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September 6, 2010

The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | Learning the Basics of SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is all the organic (unpaid) techniques and tools websites, bloggers and companies use to try and get their product or service to show up in searches using Google, Bing etc. The fact that you can do most of it yourself for free is why I take issue with companies that charge for this and do not do as much as I am going to show you today. After you have read this check your web pages and plans to see how much you already do or can do for free.

SEO Basics for Establishing a Web Presence

Creating quality content goes beyond being able to write coherently. It also involves the planning of content, the behind the scenes coding of key elements and the strategies to bring web traffic to your page. I see countless professional practice and new technology websites or blogs with lots of content but very poorly done. There are 6 general parts to SEO and it is importance to realize you do not need an advanced education to learn this just a little bit of effort. If you have been approached by an SEO marketing company and are considering purchasing their services make sure they cover all the categories below.

  1. Basic HyperText Markup Language (HTML) coding for web pages and blogs. The most critical element for SEO. Small amounts of html coding can double or triple the number of keywords found on your page.
  2. The importance of internal and external links.
  3. Writing calendar for schedule frequency planning and internal linking. Fresh content is important but the frequency of fresh content depends on what you goals are. The key is consistency.
  4. Promotional strategy for establishing a web presence. The use of social media plays an important role here.
  5. Directories. Being able to find your site using different business directories is a matter using your time and efforts wisely.
  6. RSS feeds. RSS feeds are critical for sites that change or update content frequently. For example the The Entrepreneur’s Advisor RSS feed allows potential customers to know when we have updated or added new content.

This post will discuss the basics of html coding. There will be an additional 5 sub-post on each of the other items above.

Basic HTML for Entrepreneurs and Professional Practices.

Writing content to establish a web presence for your new technology web page or professional practice blog is only half the job. In order for the search engines to recognize what is important on your page they read the HTML or source code. This is not the visual image you see on your page. For example, to view the source for a page using Windows 7, click on the page tab and then click view source. For most people, this may look like a lot of gibberish, however, it is one of the keys to SEO.

There are 6 major areas to make sure your content is properly coded. The purpose of using html coding is to establish authority with the search engines. In addition, the greater your authority the higher your page or MOZ rank is likely to be. You will find that all code editors including WordPress, Thesis, HubSpot, Coffee Cup and MicroSoft Expressions have this capability:

  1. The use of anchor text in links. Anchor text is the visible text you see in a link. For example, when I create a link to The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | How to Determine Your Keywords The words The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | How to Determine Your Keywords are the anchor text. Always try to use your keywords in your anchor text for links. Google assigns them a greater value to what is important on your site.
  2. The use of titles in links. Titles in a link are the words that appear when you hover your mouse over the link. Using the example; The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | Understanding Sales Metrics, the title text are the words How entrepreneurs can learn more about sales metrics which appear when you hover the cursor over the link. This tells the search engines which words you think are important. It also gives you a 2nd opportunity to have a keyword listed on a page. Using this method each link can give you 2 or three additional keywords credits for SEO. ALL Links should have a title attached to them. This is the first thing you should look at when checking out a site that is trying to sell you SEO services. If you do not see hover titles – run away. (Of special note -laughing, there are several links on this page without a hover title, this is a result of a plugin from Ultimate SEO to automatically create links for certain words.)

The code can be done by either using the code editor attached to your site or by manually inputting the html. The preceding link looks like this in html when coded properly.

SEO Link Coding for Entrepreneurs

  • Pictures and Alt Text. Pictures are an easy and free way to place another keyword on your page or blog. Again, code editors always ask for ALT Text when uploading a photo. Use your keywords to describe the photo and to add a caption. The best part about photo Alt Text is that it can be changed anytime and the same picture can have different keywords associated to it. Photos and videos seem to have positive effects on SEO metrics which is why you see a lot of them. Every web page and blog should have a photo with keyword alt text.
  • H1, H2 and H3 titles. If you look at this page you notice different size headings. This was not done by adjusting the font size. It was done by coding each heading as a H1, H2 or H3.
    • H1 tags: The title of your page or blog is always a H1 tag. Code editors usually make this an H1 automatically. You should only have one H1 tag per page. H1 tags tell the search engines what the page or blog is about. Try to have a keyword in your titles.
    • H2 and H3 tags. Major heading are H2 tags and subheadings are H3 tags. For example you can use these tags to identify your invention, product or type of professional practice specialty. H tags in html look like this (it is actually used above):

      H Tag SEO Coding for Entrepreneurs

  • Abbreviations. The use of abbreviation coding gives your page or blog authority in the eyes of the search engines. Every abbreviation should be defined as such. For example, If you place your mouse over the abbreviation SEO on this post you will always see the full meaning of the abbreviation spelled out. The same authority principle applies to glossary terms and quotes. Each must be coded appropriately. An example of abbreviation coding is below.
  • Abbreviation coding for Entrepreneurs

  • Blockquotes are used in place of quotation marks. When a blockquote is formatted properly it raises the level of authority your page has on that subject. It is also a great way to start establishing links with other sites. The following is an example of the proper use of a blockquote:

    Blockquote coding for Entrepreneurs

  • The above examples do not require you to know much html. There are a lot of free sources that can guide you through the steps like W3schools and html tutorial. Most good bloggers write their pages in html as I do. Others write in WORD and copy over. The drawback to using WORD or similar program is that they do not allow for the proper coding to be input for links, tags etc.

    The Entrepreneur’s Advisor wants to stress this point again. The most basic of SEO html coding on each page and/or blog is far more important for establishing a web presences than the purchase of ad words or paying for links. The reason is, what you put on your own pages is permanent and will be read each and every time your website is indexed. The basic html coding is the reason potential clients will be able to find your site and learn about your products and expertise.

    We mentioned in a previous article why I can claim to know more about SEO coding than most and how I can tell if someone selling you SEO optimization knows what they are talking about. I write professional content for other companies with great results. To see an example of a blog that is keyword heavy with all the proper coding you can read Why is There CMMS Implementation and Training.

    The next sub-post of SEO Basics for Establishing a Web Presence will cover how to create a Writing calendar for schedule frequency. In this post we will cover how to address writers block and setting a schedule for the frequency that suits your web presence needs. If you have any questions or would like us to review your web page please contact The Entrepreneur’s Advisor®.

    Articles in The Ultimate Checklist for Entrepreneurs, Innovators and Micro-enterprises so far are:

    1. The Ultimate Checklist For Entrepreneurs, Innovators and Micro-enterprises
    2. Choosing Your New Venture Legal Entity
    3. Choosing Names for New Ventures, Domains and Social Media
    4. How Entrepreneurs Can Determine Their Web Presence Needs
    5. The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | Choosing What To Do With Your Website

    4 Comments on “The Entrepreneur’s Advisor | Learning the Basics of SEO

    Rich Marshall
    December 12, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    Well put and to the point.  I found this article to be a very helpful explanation of the mechanics of SEO.

    Geoff Holman
    January 13, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Very nice review of the basics for SEO.

    student grants
    December 17, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Couldnt agree more with that, very attractive article

    rosanne slates
    September 8, 2010 at 1:47 pm

    hey… wow… i read … or shall i say looked at your article..
    nice work….. however. i was bit lost …. didnt understand much.. but im sure other webies … do…. hehehe … good job stu

    Comments are closed.