How to get top rankings in Google, you can be on page one for the right targets, targets that are relevant to what you want to do with your web.
There are no SEO silver bullets. Stop looking for them and get to work. If you don't know what the work that you need to do is, go read my better search engine rankings primer written in plain language.
Google has become the most powerful search engine on the internet. My opinion why this is is that Google delivers the most relevant search results. By relevant, I mean that if you were searching for any of those phrases bulleted above and found this page, you found a web page very close to what you were looking for? Relevance creates conversions to inquiries and sales! Relevance is GOOD. It's conversions that matter, not hits!
Let me clarify that last statement a little: first you have to have rankings, then you have to have clicks, then you need conversions. So, hits do matter, but only if your content is creating inquiries and sales? That's the way I see it.
In January 2010, in the USA market Google received 66.3% of all searches, Yahoo 14.5%, Microsoft Bing 10.9%, AOL Search 2.5% and Ask.com 1.9%. The total number of searches in January 2010 was 10,272,099,000.
The process I use to get my clients top rankings on Google and the other major search engines is basically as follows, and I am going to link you off to pages in my web that provide more details about each of these subjects. You can also read this page about my SEO Project Management
Perform a Google (and other search engines) structural compliance analysis. This is something very few SEO folks do. Why? Perhaps they don't know? Google provides recommendations to webmasters in their Webmaster Guidelines, which is public information. Google also has new patents that indicate what is important to them in ranking web pages. I also use up to the minute search engine research and know what works with Google's algorithm and what doesn't. I am not talking about anything sneaky or unethical - black hat bad guy tactics will not work for long - I don't do them. I am talking about what Google says they like and want. You do want Google to be happy, don't you?
Want to see an example of the kind of similar information for beginners? Check out my Free SEO Help files, request a copy of my free help files and sign up for your Free SEO Tip of the Day at the top left in the navigation on this page. John Alexander is a great SEO teacher and good friend.
Go to Google and search for free SEO help files and see where my page is ranked? What I do works for me?
Understand your marketing plan. You need to understand your marketing plan and I need to understand what you want your web to do for you if you want me to help you. You do have a plan, right? Complete my SEO Questionnaire so that I can also understand your priorities and your market. This information gets me all set up to help you get top rankings on Google. It is a good marketing exercise for you.
Do search phrase research. We can determine through search phrase research exactly what people are searching for relative to what you are doing with your web. Read more about Keyword Services. I am in the top four out of about 285 million competitors last time I checked.
The complexity of the way people search is increasing. The long tail is getting longer; 1- and 2-word search queries are on the decline, while 4- and 5-word queries are rising, while 3-word queries are down slightly. Four-word queries are up 12% since 2007, and five-word queries are up 16%."
Write keyword rich page copy. A web page works best with Google when it has enough text properly written about ONE SUBJECT. What Google's algorithm is trying to determine when it analyzes your web pages is: what is this page about? If you have a mixed message, the algorithm can't tell what the page is about, and you get no rankings.
Read more about Web Copywriting Basics. Also read my home page copywriting tips. Creating pages that work with Google may require some rearrangement of your content by creating new pages. Many webs have good content but the way it is arranged in the web creates mixed messages. Sound familiar? Not uncommon.
Get some links in to your web from authoritative sources. Web pages with Google PageRank's of 4 and above will get you in Google's index with a positive start. For a few hundred dollars you can list your web in paid directories that Google respects and indexes every day. This is the fastest way to be found, much better than submitting directly to Google. The cost to do the best dozen is about $900.
Keep adding content. Google treats webs with more than 100 pages of good content differently from smaller webs. 100 pages sounds like a lot? Not really. Let's discuss all of the ways you can easily add content. Some are free. Read some great ideas for adding content to your website.
Start a Link Building Program When you have done everything you can do to create the best quality content, links in to your website from other websites will be the greatest determining factor for your Google rankings.
Is your web in Google trouble or the supplemental index? We make an appeal to the Google Team telling them that we have cleaned up your act, that you will be a good boy or girl from now on, and that you want to be reinstated in their index. If you made an honest mistake or if you tried to be tricky and got caught, and you will get caught, Google will give you a break one time. Don't do it again.
Write a search engine optimized press release. This will bring large volume traffic to you web in a matter of days instead of weeks or months. I work with a pro in California, a professional writer with a journalism background. Your release will be on the first page of Google, typically in 5-7 days. Cost is about $600. If you are not on Google page one you don't pay the whole fee until you are.
Use Google Sitemaps Using an XML sitemap in your web, in addition to a regular sitemap, is a great way to see what Google sees when indexing your web. The Sitemaps Beta has now been incorporated into your free Google account under Webmaster Tools.
There are a number of XML generators online. I have tested 20 of them, none of which worked correctly for websites with more than 30 pages.
An excellent tool you can download and run from your desktop is GSiteCrawler: Google Sitemap Generator for Windows Be sure to download the latest update.
GSiteCrawler is a better solution for webs with lots of content and for webs where your images are important for image search. GSiteCrawler will index everything including all pages in all directories and your images. It uses 6 simultaneous crawlers to capture your content. Making a sitemap for a web with 2600 pages took me about an hour and a half.
GSiteCrawler also generates the Yahoo Site Explorer urllist.txt file. Read more here in my Sitemaps How to for Google and Yahoo!
Open your free Google account, then request a verification code to show you have the right to monitor the web. The best bet is to add the verification file as a named html page in your website. Google will tell you what to name the file. Add the file to your website same directory as your home page. Do the same with Yahoo Site Explorer.
Then, use GSiteCrawler to crawl your website, put the sitemap in your website online, go back to Google, tell Google the name of the file and they will check it out and approve it.
Takes me about 10 minutes, but I have done a bunch of them. Google will tell you if they find any indexing errors, missing pages, broken links, etc. When you add new pages to your web, go make another sitemap and resubmit it. Other engines are using XML maps, too. This makes Google's job easier, and is a leg up for you on your competitors for get top rankings in Google.