"This Is Possibly the Biggest Misconception About Ranking Well In The Search Engines..."

 SEO Power Strategies - Day 3

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In previous lessons I've taught you different optimization strategies. I've taught you the difference between onpage search engine optimization and offpage search engine optimization.

Quick Review:

Onpage search engine optimization are things that you can change ON your webpage.

  • Title tag
  • Header tags
  • Bolding, Italicizing, Underlining
  • Alt image tags
  • Meta Tags
  • Etc.

Offpage search engine optimization comes down to basically 1 thing, which websites are linking to your wesbite and how they're doing it. These things include:

  • Anchor text uses in your link
  • The title of the page your link is on
  • The page rank of the page your link is on
  • The "theme" of the website your link is on
  • The age of the website linking to you
  • And the list goes on and on...

By now, I'm hoping you see that it's the offpage search engine optimization factors that will get your website to the top of the search engines. NOT the onpage optimization factors like bolding text etc. Again, the onpage factors are things you SHOULD do, but are not nearly as important as the offpage factors.

Ok... Let me show you why.

Let's analyze a website!

In this example I'm going to analyze the #1 ranked website on Google for the search term "click here".

First, let's go to Google and enter "click here".

You'll notice that the #1 ranked website is www.adobe.com. That's interesting...

Now, why would adobe.com rank #1 for that search term? I would think adobe.com would rank well for terms like:

  • graphic design programs
  • create printable documents
  • web design programs
  • and other keywords related to what they sell...
A few things you should notice while looking at the picture above.

If we looks at the Google listing, you'll notice that:

1. The word "click here" isn't in the page title
2. The word "click here" isn't in the URL of the website.
3. The word "click here" isn't even in the description listed by Google!

Now, let's click on the listing in Google and check out the actual webpage.

Now, get this... The words "click here" aren't even on the webpage, anywhere!

If all of those onpage optimization techniques that many SEO companies talk about were true, then don't you think a different website would rank #1 for this term? Heck yeah!

Onpage optimization factors like:

  • keyword density
  • keyword prominence
  • keyword proximity
  • bolding, italicizing, underlining
  • etc.

are NOT critical to worry about when trying to rank well for a search term.

Yes, you should spinkle your keyword throughout the webpage and do the other onpage optimization techniques I've taught you in previous lessons, but again, I really want to drill this into your head. It is the offpage optimization that will increase your rankings in the search engines; specifically Google, Yahoo, and MSN.

Then why exactly does adobe.com rank #1 on Google for the term "click here"?

Let's open up SEO Elite and have a quick look...

1. First, we'll select radio button 1.
2. Next, we'll enter the URL from Google into step 2.
    (http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html)
3. Next, we'll select Google from the list of search engines.
4. Finally, click "ok" to run SEO Elite.

When it's finished running, let's click on the "report view" tab to view some of the results.

The first thing you should notice is the Google Page Rank of all of the pages linking to adobe.com. If you click the column heading within SEO Elite labeled "Google PR", it will sort the column in descending order.

You can see that the pages linking to adobe.com have an extremely high Page Rank. Any website with a Page Rank of 6 or higher are VERY high page ranks. Look at all the PR8 websites linking to them!

You'll also notice that there are TONS of websites with a .edu or a .gov extension linking to adobe.com. Google and other search engines give much more weight to websites with .edu or .gov extensions. So, if you can get one of those websites to link to your website, it will REALLY help improve your ranking.

Next, let's click the "analysis view" tab.

If we click the column heading titled "anchor text", it will sort this column in descending order. We can quickly see that the words "click" and "here" are within the top 10 words listed in the left hand column.

Remember, the anchor text column will show you the number of times the word in the "Word" column appears in the actual anchor text of the link pointing to adobe.com

So, by looking at the analysis above, we can see that the word "click" appeared in 6 of the links pointing to adobe.com and 4.5% of the total links pointing to adobe.com contained the keyword "click". The keyword "here" was found in 11 links pointing to adobe.com and appeared 8.3% of the time.

Now, let's do something fun. Go to Google and enter different combinations of the words listed at the top of the screenshot above. Words like "reader, adobe, acrobat, and download". So, you'd go to Google and enter things like (Or just click the links beow)

  1. Adobe Reader
  2. Acrobat Reader
  3. Download Adobe
  4. Download Reader

and so on... and check out what webstie appears #1. It's the links AND the anchor text being used in those links, that helps a website rank highly :-)

Reason adobe.com is ranked #1

The main two reasons that adobe.com is ranked #1 for the keyword "click here" is because:

  1. The websites linking to adobe.com are very quality (have a high Page Rank and come from trusted, aged websites like .edu and .gov websites)
  2. The websites linking to adobe.com used the keywords "click" and "here" many times in the anchor text of the links linking to adobe.com

There are a few other offpage optimization factors that help adobe.com to rank #1, but those are the main two reasons. After reading this lesson, I hope you can clearly see the power of offpage optimization (linking).

So, the next time someone asks you what the proper keyword density is, the proper keyword prominence, the proper number of times you need to bold, italicize, or underline a keyword on your page... You can tell them that onpage optimization is NOT critical when ranking well for a given search term.

Until next time, happy optimizing!

SEO Power Strategies - Day 4 will be coming shortly so stay tuned!

 

Brad Callen
Professional SEO
SEO Elite: SEO Software

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