Posted October 30, 2006 10:30 am by with 1 comment

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By Harmit S. Kamboe

If you are some one like me who has not written a line of code, but understand how critical SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is, then fret not. Help, is at hand.

I have had the good fortune of stumbling across and being a part of the SEO industry and have found that SEO is more to do with good, logical thinking than any secret coding tricks.

Maximizing SEO return has two basic components:

1. Know the problem
2. Solve the problem

Know the Problem

By and large, the problems with SEO are two fold:

1. Search Engine Penetration

To be considered as a possible result for a certain query, the target page (not the site) must be a part of the search engine’s index. Lest assume that a target site has 5,000 pages but when you run a check on Google (, Google only displays 700 pages.

Clearly, there are 4,300 pages that Google is not aware of. And that of course is a problem.

2. Rankings on desired terms

Once a target page is in the search index, the next problem to solve in most cases is showing up too low for specific term. This is where there is no magic bullet. One of the best things to do is to take a close look at the links ahead of you and rationally ask yourself, why are those pages more popular than your page.

Ranking is essentially a popularity contest with a twist. The more popular you are with the “authority figures/sites�, the higher up your listings will move.

Solve The Problem

1. Solving Search Engine Penetration

Search engines are on your side when it comes to reaching out to content that they have not had a chance to index. What one should be doing is to let the search engine bots in and ensure that there are no technical road blocks in their way.

Removing these artificial road blocks is one of the best thing once can do to get more pages in the search engines. To do that, think like search engine that can read only text and follow uncomplicated urls and you will form the outline of how to address the lack of penetration.

2. Solving the Rankings issue

This is where one must be prepared to roll up your sleeves and test and wait patiently and then re-test based on results.

Ask yourself if you were the searcher, what would you type in to get to the target page. Does your page have the complete information for what a searcher would be looking for. Not only must you pick the right words, you must also have the right content.

An of course think of how you can popularize your target page. Is there a study mentioned that would be picked up news publications, is there a quote that would be picked by news wires, is it an interview with a celebrity, is there a calculator/tool that consumers will find useful and can be recommended by a consumer rights group and so on.

With SEO as in life, it is the thinking and the planning that is the key. The execution is something that is done at the tail end of the engagement. If you have something that is worth sharing and people knowing about, SEO is not as hard and mystifying as it sounds.

[The above article is a submission for Marketing Pilgrim’s Search Engine Marketing Scholarship Contest. Each Monday in October, entries will be published and the most popular article of the week will qualify for the $5,000 grand prize. If you’d like to submit an entry, please view the contest entry-requirements and guidelines.]