Archive for January, 2012

postheadericon All News is Good News

In our ever changing world of search engine optimization, there are very few things that remain constant.  Keywords will always be important, inbound links will always be helpful, and fresh content will always be necessary for keeping rankings as high as possible.  In the case of the first two, the strategy is obvious, even if the implementation is not always so straight forward.  In the case of the last however, things are quite a bit different.

When I say that content needs to be fresh, that does not mean that the style of your homepage needs to change every day, every week, or even every year in order for you to maintain or improve your rankings.  Content deals somewhat with style, but more about the pages you have and the words and images on them.  It does not always have to be your homepage that is updated either.  As long as your whole site is being consistently refreshed with new content, your site will have a much better chance at staying at the top of the rankings.  Now, this may seem like a very difficult task.  I mean, coming up with new content every week sounds quite challenging, doesn’t it?

Not at all, in fact.  You are probably already doing it but you may not realize the power you have at your disposal.  There are three very easy ways for making sure you always have fresh content on your website.  The first is one that you are reading right now.  Yes, blogging is one distinct way of maintaining content on your site.

Now when I speak about blogs, I need to be clear as there are two basic types of blogs, at least from an seo point of view.  There is an external blog, which is what this is, and an internal blog.  An external blog is one that is created at a different domain from your main company website.  It might have its own domain, like this blog, or it might have a subdomain from the blog site you are using, such as blogger or wordpress.  In either event, it can be very useful for creating buzz, telling people about the latest news, or simply creating a whole bunch of inbound links to your site from a different domain.  A useful tool, no doubt, but not for the purposes of this article.

An internal blog, on the other hand, is one that is installed and accessed directly from your site under the same domain.  Usually it will be located under a different directory from the rest of your site, such as /blog.  What you may fail to realize is that the content being generated from this blog counts as content on your webpage.  Each new posts counts as a new page when search engines look at your website.  That means, with each new post you make, your website will be judged as having been recently updated.  This does not replace updating the content on your homepage, but it does mean you could get away with doing it less often, or conversely, increase your rankings by having your site be updated more often than before.

The other two easy ways to create new content are news and newsletters.  In the case of news, many sites will have a place on their homepage, if not on every page, for recent news items.  These can be short tidbits, like tweets, describing a new deal, a new product, or other such announcements.  They are short, and so they are easy to make often.  Anything you can tweet you can make a news post about.  If your site does not currently have a place for recent news, speak to your web developer or design team.  It is very easy to put in and shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes, no matter how they do it.

Also, if you are in the habit of creating newsletters that are sent out every week, two weeks, or month, consider having an archive for them to be placed in on your website.  Each one of these newsletters can be uploaded as an html page, providing fresh content each time one is added.  Search engines will just read them as new pages, like blog posts.

Using one, two, or all three of these strategies can provide quick and easy way to keep it fresh and high in the rankings.