SEO 101: How to rank on the first page of Google

The way search engines work is that they attempt to deliver web pages that most closely match (or reflect) the searches that people enter into the Google search box.

So, if somebody were searching for, “ergonomic baby bottles” then Google will look for pages that seem to reflect “ergonomic baby bottles”.

Google will look for key indicators such as…

  1. “Ergonomic baby bottles” in the page title
  2. “Ergonomic-baby-bottles” in the page URL
  3. “Ergonomic baby bottles” in the page headings
  4. “Ergonomic baby bottles” in the page link text
  5. “Ergonomic baby bottles” in the image file names

When you do SEO, i.e., when you take proactive steps to make your website rank on Google and be relative to your target audience, you need to follow these basic steps:

  1. Find out who is your target audience, who do you want to visit?
  2. Put yourself into their shoes, find out what they want?
  3. Understand *exactly* how they use Google, what to they search for?
  4. Copy and paste that search phrase, VERBATIM, into the subject line of WordPress
  5. If your WordPress theme is built properly, WordPress will do all of the work

In our case, we have two primary target audiences:

  1. Nonprofit organizations in DC looking for web development contractors in DC
  2. Web developers in DC looking for web developer job openings in DC

So, taking these target audiences one by one, what would they Google to find websites like ours and organizations like us? Whatever that phrase would be, stick it directly into the subject line of WordPress, add some relevant and supporting content, upload an image or two that has been optimized for that keyword phrase, add some relevant tags (alternative or complimentary search phrases) and then publish.

Simple as that.

Now, once you’ve done this. Don’t mess with it. Don’t change the URL or the title. Don’t delete pages. Don’t delete categories or tags. Just add more and more pages of content and blog posts.

By hyper sensitive to the local dialect, slang, semantics, and terminology of your local target audience. Use their words, not yours. Don’t add any extra stuff. Copy and paste their search phrase, verbatim, into the subject line.

If you are trying to attract employees then interview people who are actively looking for a job, ask them what they would Google to find companies like us, job openings like ours, etc. Ask them to sit in front of Google and tell them to use Google to find a job opening or a potential employer. Watch what they do, take notes, observe. Whatever they Google should be the topic of a blog post or web page.