Saturday, 4 February 2012

Optimizing Your Web Page

Now that you know how to structure your site, you next need to optimize your web
page content for Google. Put another way, this chapter discusses those aspects and
elements of web pages that determine relevancy in Google.

Keyword Factors Used in the Algorithm

The following factors play a part in the portion of the Google algorithm that
determines page relevancy. Google looks at the following keyword factors and
assigns a relevancy score for each page of your site. The factors are listed in
approximate order of importance, however, like all factors in the Google algorithm,
this is subject to change.

Keyword Proximity
Google looks at individual words that make up phrases. Keyword proximity is a
measure of word order and closeness. The closer all words in a keyword phrase are
together, and in the correct order, the better.

Obviously, exact matches score the best. As an example, say someone does a
search on “country house plans”. Google will assign a higher score if your page
contains “country house plans” than if it contains “country and farm house plans”. For
the latter, all three words are contained on the page, so the page would receive
some score, but since this is an inexact match (there are words in between “country
and “house”), the page score would be lower than for the exact match of country
house plans.

Keyword Placement
This measures where on the page keywords are located. Google looks for keywords
in the page title, in headings, in body text, in links, in image ALT text and in drop-
down boxes.

Keyword Prominence
A measure of how early or high up on a page the keywords are found. Having
keywords in the first heading and in the first paragraph (first 20 words or so) on a
page are best.

Keyword Density
Also known as keyword weight, the number of times a keyword is used on a page
divided by the total number of words on the page. There is some confusion over
keyword density. Part of this stems from the fact that different software programs
look at different parts of the page and calculate this differently.

There doesn’t seem to be an ideal density value for Google. Just don’t spam. In
other words, don’t fill your pages up needlessly with your keywords - not only will
customers think your site is amateurish, but Google may penalize you

Keyword density used to be more important in the past for search engines, and you
may still find books that stress the importance of this factor. For Google, it is not
important so don't get hung up on it.

Keyword Format
 A measure of whether keywords are bolded or italicized on the page. The best
place to do this is in the first paragraph of the page. This isn’t a real important factor,
but every little bit helps.

How and Where to Use Keywords

Don't try to use all of your keywords on the home page - rather focus only on your
Primary Keyword Phrase and your best Secondary Keyword. Use your product or
service pages to focus on the more specific keyword.

You will likely want to use the plural form of your keywords. However, you need to
verify this using KeywordDiscovery or WordTracker as sometimes the singular form
of a word is searched on more often.

Google treats hyphenated words as two words: “house-plans” is the same as “house
plans” on Google. However, words connected by an underscore or slash, such as
“house_plans” and “house/plans” are treated as a single word “houseplans”

Google is not case-sensitive, so HOUSE PLANS, House Plans, house plans, and
HoUsE pLaNs are all treated the same.

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