Monday, January 6, 2014

Using Keywords Effectively on the Internet

By Laurie Epps

Back in the old days, the best form of publicity was the phone book. To have your company at the top of the list, you simply had to begin your company name with the letter A. That would ensure your company would be called first in your type of business.

But today, when you need a plumber, or a math tutor for your kid, you reach for your computer and search for what you need using a phrase and the name of your town for results. All of this is determined using keywords and SEO. We'll tell you what this means for you with the helpful advice of Edie Melson in her book, Connections: Social Media and Networking Techniques for Writers.

Google, as in the number one search engine, has now become an adjective. We no longer are going to search for something, we're going to Google it. But how can we ensure that our audience can find our writing, or the business we are writing for? The answer is simple: keywords, and SEO.

First we'll talk about keywords. Keywords are those words that we use that help Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines use to identify our work.  

Here are some basic tips to get your work noticed:

  • Always use keywords in the title. Usually my keywords start with the title.
  • Repeat keywords in the first 50 words of your article.
  • Spread keywords throughout your article. For example, if you have an article that is 400 words long, you should use your keywords a minimum of four times. (Once for the title, and then again three more times.)
What is SEO? = Search Engine Optimization.

Basically, this is using the right keywords to make sure your readers can find you. To do this, each search engine uses a precise mathematical equation called an algorithm. Of course, this algorithm is very safe guarded.

But how do you make yours appear first? Well, this is where we come in as writers. You want to use a catchy title, but not too unique for nobody to be able to match it. So instead of calling your meatloaf, "The in-cahoots with the Mexicans meatloaf" you might instead call it "Southwestern Turkey Meatloaf". That will likely yield a much better return for your blog. Then anyone wanting to make a meatloaf with ground turkey instead of ground beef can find you.

What kind of titles have given your blog the highest readership? Please share your stories below.

What can you do to make sure your marketing is working? Try these tips:

  • Check to see where you come up in a search using different search engines like: Google, Bing, Yahoo, Ask, etc.
  • Search for your blog topics using the various search engines.
  • Search for your overall blog's focus topic, if you have one. For example, Edie's topic would be Writing Instruction. To view her personal site, and get more information on Social Media, click here.
  • Finally, search for yourself by your pen name. Where do you come up?

Join us next week to learn about Analytics.

Laurie Epps is a senior at Anderson University majoring in Creative Writing. Already Laurie is most published as a feature article writer, essayist, and poet. A seeker of beauty and world traveler, Laurie hopes to grow into a career in travel writing illuminating the many stories that make us human despite our differences. Currently, Laurie also has a Thoughtful Thursday column dedicated to the fine art of poetry.

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