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How To Feed Your Bottom Line, And The Search Engine Spiders... At The Same Time

By Ginger Geracitano
Posted Monday, September 20, 2004

The most effective way I've found to increase my sales, and my overall profit, is by 'feeding' my web site visitors and E- Zine subscribers to my referred products and affiliate programs. I use both my web sites and my E-Zines to funnel my clients and prospects to the areas I cover that are in their particular area of interest.

When I say that you should 'feed' your visitors to your referred products through the use of a content heavy web site, I'm referring to the entire process of "pre-selling". The same holds true for the original articles I publish in my E-Zine, and archive on my web site, (these articles do double duty by also providing content to my site!).

The thought process behind this method of marketing is that by providing your visitors with useful and informative 'content' on your web site, and in your E-Zine, you can use this opportunity to :

- Recognize the fact that since they are there, reading that particular information, they have an interest in whatever the topic is. This means that you have created a 'warm market' to sell to.

- Refer these visitors to products and/or programs that are directly related to the content they are interested in. In effect, pre-sell them on a NEED, or a SOLUTION to their problem with your content, and provide your referral as a resource. Statistically speaking, referrals made to a warm market through the pre-selling process always result in a higher ratio of sales, or stated plainly, prospects-turned- buyers.

The other side of this issue is that by offering such a content heavy web site, you are providing the search engine spiders with the 'meaty' kind of site they love to index. Remember, the SE spiders will follow and index every link on your pages, using your index page as a starting point.

Some Points of Importance for Optimized Ranking & Indexing

Include your most important keyword in your opening headline, and your second and third most important keywords in subsequent headlines! These spiders that the search engines send out to index web sites *specifically* look for the headline tags, and rate their content for keyword relevancy! Headline tags should look like this:

{H1}Brilliant Headline Here{/H1}, or
{H2}More Brilliance Here{/H2}

(The number refers to the Headline's font size. and the "{}" should should be replaced with "" and "". I had to put that there so this would be viewable in all e-mail clients.)

In the body text of your pages, you should include text links to the most important pages on your site. Using the relevant keywords AS THE LINK. The search engine spiders evaluate and specifically look for these text links on your pages, so make sure they INDEX them. Don't over do it, or your page will look littered, and the search engine may consider it their own kind of spam.

Sprinkle your keywords throughout the body text. Sprinkle, *NOT* drown! If your content is actually related to your keywords, (like it's supposed to!), this should flow naturally.

Utilize the ALT tags for any and all images on your page. This will automatically increase the repetition of your keyword use on your page, as well as provide useful information at a 'usability' level. Remember that *not* all of your site's visitors can see your images. If someone has turned off the images in their browser, or is using a non-compatible browser, they will still see the words you place in the image ALT tags. This is also the text that will appear in the mouse over pop up with Internet Explorer browsers.

- Yes, the spiders are trained to look for these HTML tags too! A simple ALT set up would look like this:

~img src="me.gif" width="1" height="1" alt="Clever image description here" border="0"~

Your index page should link to your content pages, and your content pages should link to your referral or purchase products. This leaves a nice trail, or path of links for the spider to follow, and they DO! I've just added a Site Map to my main page to easily offer up a snack to the spiders, the very first link on my home page leads them to:

(http://theportaltosuccess.com/sitemap.html)

Can you say, "All You Can Eat Free-For-All"? ;o)

What If I Don't Want To Feed The Spiders?

I feel this is an important part of SEO that is overlooked by many of the services that compare to mine in this field. The robots.txt document tells the search engines which pages NOT to index...such as private, unprotected download pages or informational pages in your directory for your exclusive use.

Although these pages may not be linked to anything on your site, if they are published to your domain, the robots and spiders used by the search engines will find them, and in some cases, index them to show in search results! I include this service in all packages, with client co-operation in supplying the information necessary.

For the guidelines in setting up a robots.txt page, visit: (http://www.robotstxt.org/wc/exclusion.html)

While you may hear there is a Meta tag that can do the same thing, please be aware that the search engine spiders are not looking for that particular Meta tag, but they are *required* to look for a robots.txt document *BEFORE* they index your site!

I sincerely hope this information helps you to publish your pages so that they are all *nibbled* up by those search engine spiders! My sites are all receiving top ranking now... it didn't happen over night, but it did happen, and I didn't pay for it!

About The Author
Ginger Geracitano offers her experience as a Web Designer and Business & Marketing Coach through her weekly E-Zine, The Portal To Success. (http://theportaltosuccess.com) Subscribers receive tips, strategies, and her product reviews every Monday. mailto:subscribe@theportaltosuccess.com