Friday, April 24, 2009

Win of the Week: Search Engine Optimization for Beginners

Have you heard the term "SEO" or search engine optimization flying around lately?

It essentially it refers to thinking about the content that makes up your Web site (or blog) and being conscious about the wording you use so that it will be found by search engines when you want it to be found. This pertains to both to what you post as well as the code that makes up your blog.

I'm simplifying this, of course...there are professionals who's full time jobs are to work with mega-big companies so that when someone searches for "IP Litigation Attorney" their client's Web site comes up first and not their competitor's.

But paying attention to even just the basics of SEO can help people find your blog, or decide to click over to your blog once they find it.

I promise you the instructions I'm about to give you are very easy.

First, write up a brief description of your blog. Be brief, but understand that when people search and find your blog this description will show beneath your blog name in the search results. If you search for 'Mommy Always Wins', you'll see the following:

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OK, got your description written?

Good. Let's go on to step two.

Make a list of keywords that describe your blog. You may want to use terms like "mommy blogger" or "photography" or "menu planning". You may want to put in the city or state where you live if you write about area-specific things - you get the idea.

Got your list?

Great. Now, in Notepad we're going to "code it up".

Here's a look at sample code - you'll fill in the blog description and keywords (separated by commas and a space) in the areas indicated in red. They're surrounded by single quotes and the rest of the code must be typed out exactly as you see it below.

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Then, copy the code and if you use Blogger, go to your Layout tab then click "Edit HTML". Within the code for your blog's template, look for

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It will be very near the top. Place your cursor on the line beneath it and paste.

Save your template and you're done!

Another important aspect of SEO is the regularity in which you post. More current items will appear in search results above those that are older, so if you posted last on Monday and another blog with similar keywords posted this morning, their blog will appear in the search results above yours.

Was this helpful to you? Stumble it (click the link below) so that others can more easily find it, too. And subscribe so you don't miss my "wins" every week!

11 comments:

Stephanie @ Faithful Follower Of Christ said...

Thanks for posting this! I just added the description and keywords to my blog after reading your post. Do you know how long it takes the search engines to pick up on these changes?

Tara R. said...

That's one of the big things I don't like about the Free Wordpress.com, I can't add my own meta tags/descriptions. One day I'll get brave and go out on my own. I have my own domains, just haven't gone forth to self-host.

Kristin H. said...

I'm having trouble with this.

Organizing Mommy said...

Thanks for the techie boost in real people language. My problem is: that I don't care THAT much to have my stuff come up FIRST, if you know what I mean. I want those who want to be there to find it though. Either way, I'm glad there's someone like you out there!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Okay, so how much would you charge to help me up the ante on my blog? Seriously.

Overwhelmed Mom said...

From one working mom to another - thanks. I'm definitely going to try this - I'm a blogging newby so I need all the help I can get. Thanks again & love your site!

http://owwm.blogspot.com/

Kaycee said...

That's great information. Thanks for sharing.

Your Frugal Friend, Niki said...

This is such an awesome tip, but I am having difficulty. It says it will not save because it is not well-versed (Blogger).

What on earth does that mean???

Amy Ellen said...

Thanks for these tips! I'll have to work on that.

Nice to meet you!
Amy Ellen at HealthBeginsWithMom.com

Roger said...

So, do I type in the whole thing, including the META content part, or just the part in red? I ask, because I don't have that in my HTML stuff. I be confused, and don't want to screw my page up, etc.

Hey there Roger, this isn't an email, settle down and just leave a comment.Oh sorry. I like this post, but may need some extra assistance. :)

Melissa Stover said...

i did not know this. thanks for the info!