One of the most profitable marketing techniques I've used for my businesses is without any doubt search engine optimization.
Since venturing into SEO, I've encountered much success for my websites. At first when I saw the top 10 websites in Google for a popular search term in one of my markets, it was kind of dream for me. I knew what they did to get there but I knew there was hard work to be done. But certainly it was achievable.
I have to admit it was a kind of obsession to get my website in the top 10 placement because I knew once I am there I will receive targeted traffic and sales for a long time to come. That thought just keep coming in my mind.
All I know is I have to take action right now and I was also really motivated to attain my goals. I know getting search engine traffic is passive and that to profit from passive traffic, I have to start promoting my site right now or else it will take more time to get those coveted rankings.
And once I've worked on my search engine rankings, I can leave it aside and concentrate on other aspects of my business but also look for other ways to promote my business. One fundamental thing you should always remember is to FOCUS. Focus on one marketing strategy and keep at it. Give it all you can before moving on to the next one. If you try to do too many things at once, it's very difficult to find success and you will most likely fail.
The day will come when you will do a search for a keyword phrase that you have been working on and to your surprise, you'll see your site in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). This will just prove that what you're doing is working. I've been there and I can tell you that you will feel proud and happy with such an accomplishment. It's an amazing feeling. It's kind of you do not believe you are really there.
If you want to achieve those top search engine rankings in Google and other major search engines, educate yourself well and learn the search engine optimization strategies and techniques that work because you will not be wasting your time and time so so precious in search engine marketing . Have a plan like what you're going to do everyday to achieve your objectives ie doing some valuable link exchanges with related and relevant websites, article writing, directory submissions, text link advertising.
Link exchanges are not useless. In the past, they were the major ways to get top rankings but now they have been a bit devalued but still they are worth getting. Why? Simply because related and relevant links will bring direct traffic to your website and will help your link popularity too. They will help you in rankings automatically but less as compared to several years ago. Well just focus in getting targeted links and you will be surprised how much traffic you can get just with links from related and relevant sites. Even if one day, reciprocal links are completely dead, those links will still be of value in terms of direct traffic. So do not get reciprocal links just for search engine ranking benefits and for a boost in link popularity. Article writing should be an ongoing process for direct traffic and automatically, it will help your link popularity. Directory submissions will give your site a solid foundation for link building and can make your site stable in the rankings. Concerned text link advertising, if you can afford it, it's worth it. Just advertise your website on relevant and related sites and if they are high traffic sites, you can get good traffic and potential business. There was a discussion about paid text links and that Google may detect those in the future and maybe devalues them and here is what I have to say.
I think this would have happened sooner or later. Google may detect paid links depending on some criteria. Suppose a website is new and is getting a bunch of high quality links eg sites with good link popularity, high PageRank, high traffic, this may raise a red flag like this site is buying links. But that as well, it can be getting good links due to article submission.
Whatever happens in the future concerning paid links, I believe if you have to do it, do so such that you are getting targeted traffic from those links and websites alone and bypassing PageRank and backlinks. But first, check that website's alexa ranking to get an idea of its traffic levels (the lower the number, usually the higher the traffic) and check its rankings for its primary keywords in the major search engines as an additional plus because you can have high traffic websites which do not depend on search engine rankings. They can depend on other traffic sources. Now if you were to check the rankings, a top 10, a top 20 and even a top 30 is worth considering. The website's homepage html title will usually contain the primary keywords. By knowing the alexa ranking and search engine rankings, this should give you an idea whether it's worth advertising or not. This alone can justify your investment.
If there is good return on investment, why bother about the search engine ranking benefits from that link. Even if you do not get any benefit, you will not care as long as you're getting business from your text link advertisement. You may need to test which sites bring you results or not. Advertise for a month with one or two good sites and see if there is any improvement in traffic and business. You can know which site brings you more traffic via your traffic logs. You will see visitors coming to your site from another website. If you're getting traffic but no business, you have to work on your conversion and tweak it. You can have different business models like selling your own products, affiliate products and generating money from AdSense for instance. Here as well, focus is important. Do not try to give too many options to your visitors or else they can get confused and leave for good. You need to test which business model is more profitable and lucrative for your Internet business. Testing is absolutely critical in Internet marketing.
I do not think there is anything wrong if you purchase links on relevant and related sites for the purpose of advertising but if you have to do it solely for PageRank and link popularity, you might be affected if Google detects paid links in the future and devalues them. You may not get any PageRank passed to your website and your rankings might not benefit. So what's the use? You can be advertising for nothing. No traffic, no backlinks, and no PageRank. You have just wasted your money. Usually when you go for PageRank and link popularity only and not focusing on the traffic rewards, you will not be too concerned about what type of sites you are advertising on whether they are related and relevant or not. You can just buy links on unrelated and irrelevant sites simply for the sake of getting PageRank and backlinks. And usually, you will go after high PageRank websites. Well this is not recommended at all. Opt for a long term strategy which can produce results time and time again not short term results.
On another note, it's important to remember that before starting a search engine promotion campaign, it's fundamental that you have already created useful, quality and original content on your site. You may need to outsource your content creation if you have problems coming up with original content. A website without useful content will not have much merit for the search engines. Search engines love content and best of all if it's original. It's also a good idea to build a solid link structure for your site.
So here you are, to get top Google rankings, create your own Google search engine optimization plan and have your own road map for Internet success. You'll be glad you did.