Wednesday, September 21, 2005

How To Write Effective And Unique Articles That Are Optimized for the Search Engines

By: Karl Augustine

It is a well known fact that writing, distributing and posting articles to various location on the web is an extremely effective way to generate targeted traffic and establish yourself as an experienced marketer in your field. Unique articles that help solve the reader's problems, assists the reader in advancing their marketing acumen, or otherwise generally inform tend to stay posted on many web sites throughout the Internet and usually generate targeted traffic for the writer.

In order to further maximize the benefits of writing and posting unique articles, it makes good business sense to optimize the articles so the search engines list the URL's associated with those articles on search engine results pages (SERP's). Ideally, you'd like to see your article URL on the 1st page of the SERP's so you can capitalize on the free and targeted traffic from these listings.

So, what type of strategy can be utilized to optimize your articles for the search engines?

There's quite a few different ways but here are some tactics that you may want to use:

Article optimization tactic 1: Choose keywords that complement your USP and name your article page accordingly. When choosing keywords that will be the central theme of your article, it is necessary to define what your article will be about, who the information in the article will benefit, and how it will tie into your USP before choosing your keywords. After you've thought through this, then come up with a list of keywords that will be suitable as the central them of the article.

Next, decide which keywords you will center your article around based on the number of searches that keyword gets per day and by assessing how much competition there is for that keyword phrase. Once you have chosen your keyword phrase for the article, name your page.

Example: If 'green widgets' is the keyword you wish to base your article on, you may want to name your web page 'greenwdgets.htm' or 'greenwdgets.html' or 'greenwdgets.shtml'.

Article optimization tactic 2: Utilize keyword in the title tag. Utilize your keywords that you've chosen for your article in the title tag of the web page.

Example: Green Widgets | The best green widgets available

Article optimization tactic 3: Utilize keyword in headline tags. Using keywords in headline tags will increase rankings of your web pages.

Ideally you would use the keywords as the headline, but usually this doesn't look natural.

Keep the h tags before and after the entire headline.

Example:Green widgets: We have the most affordable and powerful green widget available anywhere, guaranteed!

Article optimization tactic 4: Utilize keywords in the 1st sentence of the initial paragraph. This an easily be accomplished and still make the paragraph read well and in a natural sounding tone if read back. Remember that you want your reader to feel like they are being talked with not "at" and you want your reader to not realize that your placement of your keyword phrases might be planned.

Article optimization tactic 5: Utilize keywords in text with appropriate keyword density After you write your article, you can easily edit to try to obtain the best keyword density for the search engines you'd like to target.

Google's optimum keyword density is between 1.5% to 2.5% keyword density at the time of this writing.

Once you have the article written you can use GoRank's keyword optimization tool (http://www.gorank.com/seotools/) to check what the keyword density is of the text of the article so you can edit accordingly.

Remember, you don't want to 'stuff' the page with your chosen and targeted keyword phrase but you do want to make sure that you utilize your keywords when you can up to the required amount for the desired keyword density.

Article optimization tactic 6: Bold or italicize keywords in text. When bolding and italicizing your keywords in your articles, it isn't necessary to bold and/or italicize every keyword phrase. When the reader comes across bolded and italicized words they add emphasis to the text at the time they read those words. So you should use your best judgment as to what looks right and 'reads' right when you edit your article.

One key item to remember to write naturally so you get your message across in a human manner.

You want the reader to click to your link at the end or in the body of the article and the more human and conversational your article comes across, the more likely that the reader will travel to the URL you'd like them to see. Some marketers write their articles without search engine optimization in mind and then go back and edit them for the search engines.

After your article is optimized, do all you can to get it posted to other web sites so the number of relevant links pointing to that article is heightened. If you get your article posted to some of the heavier web sites that post articles and have the correct categories where your article will fit, the faster your article URL will get indexed by the search engines.

Be humble, work hard, work smart.

About The Author

Karl Augustine Author, "9 Deadly Mistakes To Avoid...". http://www.9mistakes-online.com "65 Answers To SEO Questions" http://www.seoexpertinterview.com

85 Comments:

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