Welcome to Week 17 of my adventure of following the Start Up Version of the Grow Your Business Marketing Plan + Calendar. In my posts, I talk about my voyage down the road of self-employment as a virtual marketing assistant, my achievements and roadblocks along the way, and I include a weekly recap at the end.
As part of the Grow Your Business Marketing Plan, we are supposed to check our search engine rankings. This means typing relevant search terms into Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc… to see where our site comes up in the results.
My Google ranking for the term “virtual marketing assistant” was hanging out around 8. This was pretty good, considering it was on the first page. But at #8, there’s always room for improvement.
I’m happy to say that today my site comes up first in Google. Why? Because of the power of anchor text. What is anchor text? It is simply the text that is linked to your site. Here’s an example. The Marketing Mix is my favorite marketing blog. In this case, marketing blog is the anchor text.
Maybe you’ve noticed that in the past 4 weeks, I added an introduction to my blog post where the words virtual marketing assistant link to my website. Over the past 4 weeks, I’ve gone from #8 to #1 in Google. Coincidence? I think not.
This is happening because by linking virtual marketing assistant to my website, it is explaining to search engines what my webpage is about. My web page is about “virtual marketing assistant.” If you use the anchor text click here, it is telling the search engines that your webpage is about “click here.” Having more descriptive link text is a benefit to your reader, and to the search engine.
Search engines use many factors to determine where our websites rank for certain searches. People dedicate their entire careers to getting high search engine rankings, but there are a few simple things we can do ourselves to improve our rankings:
- Understand what keywords and phrases your prospects are searching for (the Google Keyword Tool is a good way to do this). Remember to be specific with your ideal keywords. You might not be able to get a first page ranking for “graphic designer,” but you might be able to get on the first page for a term like “logo design Kansas City.”
- Have descriptive title and meta tags in the html code of each page (that include your important keywords or phrases )
- Have keyword rich text throughout your website
- Remember the importance of incoming links to your website. Exchange links with partners and clients. When you post on a blog, remember to link back to your website if possible. Just by keeping the idea of linking at the forefront of your mind, it will help you increase your website rankings.
Week 17 Recap: Last week I said I was going to reach out to three contacts per day on Biznik, and I have been! I’ve been commenting on articles and sending introductions. It only takes a few minutes but I feel like I’m really making a vested effort to expand my knowledge, and my network. Also, I completed last month’s promo piece—a list of services for web designers who want to offer additional services to their customers (such as content writing, blogging, article writing, etc.)