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List Moderator: Supported by:
John Audette Multimedia Marketing Group
ja@mmgco.com http://www.adventive.com

March 22, 1999            Digest # 824

"Search Engine Optimization"
~ Rod Aries
Subject: Subject: Search Engines

Joel Slatis wrote: >> I am skeptical of anyone who proclaims they can improve the ranking of a web site. Now, lets be generous and say the searcher sees 200 results. That's 200 out of how many thousands of relevant and irrelevant sites vying for attention? How many of these sites have been 'optimized' for search engines?

Well, more of these have been optimized, than haven't... why do you think they are ranked :)) How do you tell? You look at the source code... Take your site for example:

<head> <title>Web Sites</title></head>

That is it. That is all the source code you have in the header, yet SOME search engines also index meta keywords and meta descriptions. You have lost the opportunity to receive "extra points" in the ranking algorithm. The result, you won't be ranked as high. Additionally you have just two words "Web Sites." What if your perfect client is looking for "web design" or "websites" or "web pages"? The answer: you won't be found for those words any more than you will be found for "peanut butter" or "San Diego Zoo" If the words aren't in your page, you are not gonna be found. You have to not only be found for the keywords you think are important, but the words your visitors are actually typing.

Statistically, I just don't see how anyone can claim to produce improved ratings that are worth a darn.

Ahh, statistics... that is why you want search engine optimization. If statistics worked and there are a 1,000 sites on a topic, you have a 1 in a thousand chance being listed first... But that is not how web sites rank. They rank on relevancy, not statistics. You have to write the source code on your site that is in a digestible format to the search engine spiders, because they index your site and then run a proprietary algorithm on the indexed source code to determine your relevancy... your ranking. They are not using statistics, they are using formulas. You want to be ranked? Then conform to the formula.

And if there is someone out there with a magic search engine bullet, how long will it be before.

Joel, you know the reason why this won't happen? It is not a magic bullet. It is hard work!! Not everyone can do it, knows how to do it, can take the time to do it or even knows it can be done...

the number of sites out there weeds this fellow out too?

Besides, the future is always now. If you have a business, why not get receive the traffic now, and then when the entire internet world transforms into its next shape, then adapt and adjust your web site then. Improvement and change are inevitable. Traffic now is always worth more than traffic later.

When I describe Excite to non-internet savvy people, I liken the web site to a phone book that encompasses the entire world (of course as it relates to listed web sites). That's one big phone book, right?

Even a phone book is not statistical - it is alpha order. Ever wonder why there are so many AAAAA Locksmith and #1Plumber ads. The same way these people have conformed to the rules of the phone book, is what you can do to impact where you are ranked.

In sum, I'm results driven. I would like to see someone post a message telling me that if I search on a given engine with keywords X,Y and Z I will see a listing for W's web site within the top 30. Heck, I'd settle for the top 100. I just would like to see it work, not to mention consistently.

OK, I am game... I own close to a 120 domains and my busiest site now has almost a million unique page views a year -- and I got that entirely through search engine optimization on my own site. I have applied that skill to over 50 clients and here are some examples of recent work. Just email me for my password protected web address so you can see the actual results...

Client #1 - 174 first page rankings Industry: car accessories Client #2 - 36 first page rankings Industry: manufacturing Client #3 - 111 first page rankings Industry: hobbies Client #4 - 87 first page rankings Industry: telecommunications

Note that these rankings are entirely the words selected by client as the most important words for their site. In some cases I might have rankings such as #1, #2, #5 and #9 for a single term or phrase... Clients like that.

Another client, a small 20 man firm, has already done over $800,000 in EXTRA business off of a site I designed for him, and yes, he is ranked high, very high. 116 first page rankings.

So, does search engine optimization work... I think so :)

At your service,
Rod Aries
How To Internet Your Business

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