OK, you've got a business blog or website. Raise your hands now: how many of you have a nice front page, something like a "Contact me" page, maybe a "Rates and Services" page and not much else?
If you've got your hand up you need to pay attention: You are wasting the vast power of the web to bring you business.
"Oh, fiddle-faddle", you say. Well, maybe you wouldn't quite say that, but you might say something like: "Boopy, there is just no way that my website is going to rise to a prominent position in Google or any other search engine. There are fifteen gazillion people in the same business I am and fourteen gazillion of them are a heck of a lot bigger than I am. If you search for "ding-bat bolts" (my chosen field of endeavor), I'll never turn up on the lists."
I agree. And yet I still say you are wasting the power of the Internet.
Let me tell you a story about a geekish acquaintance. I usually tell this story for a different reason, but bear with me. This person, whom we shall call "Red" because of his hair, has a website. Like some of you, he runs a part time business venture there, and also uses it for social reasons. Probably mostly social, but it isn't his web site that we really care about here.
Red was telling me that he thought Yahoo was a far better search engine than Google. I didn't argue with him, but a little later I went to his site and picked out something from one of his stories that I thought was pretty likely to be unique across the Internet. It was a short phrase, maybe three words, and I don't even remember what it was now. But I looked it up on Yahoo, and got no results. I then looked it up on Google and got one result, which of course was his site. I emailed him links to the searches and the next time I saw him, he was a born again Googler.
The fact that Google knew where that phrase lives is why I say you are wasting the power. It may be true that 99.99% of searches for "ding-bat bolts" will use just that phrase, but every now and then somebody is going to search for "blender ready ding-bat bolts", and if a page on your site happens to be the only one that has that phrase, or even is one of a few hundred that have it, that's your chance to pick up some business.
Here's where I leave the beaten path. Traditional SEO advice is to gather statistics on weak keywords and write articles to zone in on owning those words and phrases. That's fine, so go ahead and do that if you can. But are you really imaginative enough to think of everything? Which are more likely - which should you concentrate on?
Fuh-gedda 'bout it, I say. Just get yourself busy writing everything you can about ding-bat bolts: how to make 'em, how to store 'em, when to plant them, ding-bat bolt recipes for low carb diets, ding-bat bolt stories for people in love, supercharged ding-bat bolts for the racing enthusiast and the rare, low mintage ding-bat bolts that collectors prize. Write about anything that you can wrangle a mention of ding-bat bolts into.
Your site may never become the authority on ding-bat bolts. We all know that Steve's Ding-Bat Bolt Super Site has that territory locked down, Heck, he's always number one in Google and no wonder: seventy three thousand articles and a staff off twenty pumping out more every day. You are never going to usurp him in the SEO game. But that's OK, because you don't have Steve's overhead, do you? You don't need EVERY person searching for ding-bat bolts to find you; a few here and there will be fine, thanks. And that's what those articles you write can give you. Write enough of them, and hey, you might hit position ten or maybe number two for certain searches: nothing shabby about that, is there?
The beauty of search engines like Google is that your site may not have one thousandth of the drawing power of Steve's, but you can still end up listed right underneath him for the right words. That's a very good place to be. Though Steve is a thousand times bigger than you, his result and yours in Google search have the exact same font size, and if you can squeak your way close to the top, it's really just about as good as being Steve - as far as people noticing you in search, of course
Internet search is the great leveler. Don't waste its power.
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More Articles by Anthony Lawrence © 2012-07-16 Anthony Lawrence