It's funny going back to posts that you wrote years ago. This one first saw the light of day in 2011 when it was so much easier to get several posts, pages and YouTube videos ranking on the first page of Google for your business for a long tail local search.
Has anything changed? Not that much really. I would not rely on article directories but you do have to find another way to build back links - these days people tend to try to write guest posts on established blogs instead.
So the first thing you need to decide is what you want to get onto the front page of Google for and then focus on it.
Then you need to sit down and work out what other people will type into their search query box in order to find you.
Work out your Keyword
Almost all online interactions begin with search, whether you're doing research or shopping or looking for entertainment or to chat in social media or just attempting to conduct business.
And search is is also what happens whichever point of entry you're using – Google and the other search engines, YouTube and other video sites or social media forums.
Potential customers type their problem, question or area of interest into the search box. So, as a service or product provider, our content must be relevant to that search query if we want our site to be listed as giving an answer on the search engine results page that is produced in response to that query.
On Page SEO
So, once we've identified what search term (otherwise known as a keyword) is most likely to be used by people to find our business, when we write our content, we must ensure that Google knows what our piece is about by including this word or phrase in the title of our piece and is also mentioned once or twice within the body, along with a number of variations or alternatives that mean the same thing.
We should also make sure that any images we use are also labelled or 'tagged' with that same keyword phrase.
But, once we've created that content and made sure that it's obvious what it's about, how do the search engines decide what to rank and what to ignore when they have several suitable pieces from which to choose?
The answer is that, if all the entries providing an answer are equal in quality, then the search engines look to see which source website has the most authority. This is a site which has been on the internet for a long time and has built up a lot of trust in the search engines eyes. If a site has a lot of content with many comments and interactions on that content, it suggests to Google that it is held in high esteem by its human readers.
Remember, Google is a machine and it cannot make judgements based on taste or aesthetics. It has to rely on human interaction to highlight and verify sites which have worthwhile and relevant information to any search term.
Off Page SEO
After that, the search engines look at incoming links. This is where those human readers have actively promoted the quality of a post by highlighting it on their website. If one piece of content is shared on two different people's websites, the website which has the most backlinks will be the one that Google picks for a position on the first page of its SERPs. Backlinks can be used in two different ways – a few quality links from other sites with a Page Rank of 2, 3 ,4 +; and quantity with a hundreds or thousands of links from lower graded sites. The experts are divided over which is actually the best but my own feeling is that a little bit of both is probably the most effective.
Next up is Page Rank, a metric between 0 and 10 (with 10 being the highest), which Google gives to websites dependent upon the number of backlinks and the amount of activity. If your site has a Page Rank of around 5, it seems to be the case that its content will rank a little easier on the search engine results pages – although Google themselves have denied that PR has any bearing on their ranking algorithm
So if we want our content to have the best chance of ranking and ranking quickly, it should be posted on a site which has authority but if other people then start linking to it, it will push it even higher because it is like receiving official votes that the content is good.
So, if we say that there are three keys factors to getting onto the front page of Google with content:
Create Relevant Content
Add Content to an Authority Site
Backlink to that page
and our own website has not yet achieved authority status, then what are we to do?
Find an authority site.
This is where YouTube Video Marketing and Article Directory Marketing come in. If you have video, put it onto YouTube with the relevant keywords and a link back to your site – easy. If you have written content, find a good article directory site and submit it to them. You are using their authority and page rank to promote your article.
Once viewers on YouTube and readers on those directory sites see your good content, they will want to share it on their own sites. And they are allowed to do this, providing they link back to the original article, either through a link in the content or with a resource box at the end which you have supplied.
The more they backlink to you, the more likely it is that the search engines will pick up your content as being of interest and, with the addition of the trust level that has been built up by the authority site upon which it sits, you should be able to rank on the front page of Google for your search term.