Friday, January 16, 2009

Search Engine Optimization For Blogs

Before we can talk about search engine optimization you need to know and understand the very basics of how a search engine works. While the process is very mathematical and way more complex than most people care to know about, I will try and give you a very simple explanation.

A search engine, such as Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc... sends a "spider" to a new website. This spider is simply a bit of code, or a program if you will, which "crawls" the website. Crawling the website is simply a matter of copying the pages and then downloading a copy of them to the search engine's web server.

Once the site has been crawled by the spider, the search engine then indexes the information from the pages it now has copies of. The indexing is all about keywords, tags, and what the site itself is all about.

When you go to Google and put in a keyword to search for, your "search results" page is based in the indexed pages from this process.

So, a search engine basically sends a spider to your pages, crawls them, copies them down to their own server, indexes the information on them, and then uses their index when someone does a search. It's not really that simplistic of a process, but as far as what most of us need to know that is basically what happens.

Search Engine Optimization

Once you have your blog established and are working to get the most traffic to visit it as possible, you will invariably hear about search engine optimization, or as it is commonly referred to - SEO. While search engine optimization sounds pretty daunting, it really is a pretty simple process to understand. Being mindful of SEO can bring your blog more visitors, and thus generate more income for you by those visitors clicking on your AdSense ads.

This eBook will cover the basics on SEO, but know that just like the actual workings of a search engine; entire books can be written on the topic! And, as an added frustration, the search engines do not release exactly how they process their information and index. This means that everyone trying to optimize their sites for the search engines is doing a fair amount of guessing and trial and error to see what works for them.

When looking for something specific online you invariably go to your favorite search engine and put in the keywords to search for whatever it is you are looking for. For example, if you want to buy a new golf club you would likely go to and type in "golf club" in the search box.

Google, the search engine, would then return you a listing of probably a million or more pages of possibilities. The first website you see on the search results page is the page ranked #1 with Google; the second result has the #2 ranking, and so on down the list. With SEO being your main goal is to get to as near the top as possible of the results pages when someone searches on the keywords for your blog topic. You want to be on that first page of search engine results.

When a visitor does a search through a search engine and then clicks through to your site from there they are referred to as "natural" or "organic" visitors. They got to your website by a "natural" search engine search and not through another form of advertising you have done. Search engine optimization is all about getting you the most natural visitors to your site as possible. Why? Because these natural visitors come to you without you doing any work and then click on your AdSense ads. This gives you the best form of passive income possible!

The key to good search engine optimization is getting the highest ranking possible with the least amount of extra work on your part. When someone searches Google for the keyword which is the topic of your blog, you want your blog to show up on that first page of results, nearest to the top as possible. While the search engines use very complicated and secret algorithms to create their rankings, there are some simple things you can do to help get your blog up nearer to the top. You should be posting on your topic and often, building links, using good keywords and keyword density, tagging your posts and pinging regularly. Let's take a moment and look at each of these suggestions in more detail.

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