My SEO Method

Recently (especially on Google Plus) I’ve seen a lot of tricks, schemes, and SEO ‘programs’ claiming to be the best way to increase your search engine rankings and traffic.  These SEO tips & methods that I’ve read about usually involve everything from massive keyword research to link building pyramids, “leveraging social media trends for maximum effective engagement” and every other kind of BS or big-words that you can imagine.  Sometimes it even seems like these self-proclaimed SEO ‘experts’ get paid more if they use bigger words!  These tactics are complicated, sometimes under-handed, often a scam to take your money, and considering who the ‘expert’ is pitching the method, I wonder if they even do any good.  I mean, why do I see the same guy making a post in one online-forum asking why his website was penalized by Google over on another online forum spouting off about his super SEO tricks?

Anyway – seeing so many of these “great SEO” methods got me thinking about some of the techniques that I use and I remembered this one. Back when I first published my (free) ebook, I touched on this method that I was using that seemed to work, and because it is so simple and still works for me today I wanted to re-share it.

My big SEO & traffic building method revealed:

Throw a lot of different mud at the wall, see what sticks, then throw more of that same kind of mud at that same spot and go with the flow.

Not quite what you expected, was it?

Here is the breakdown of what it means:

  • Start by writing as many good, original, articles or posts as you can, on subjects that are within the scope of your website or blog.
  • Try to stay away from insanely popular and broad topics like “Windows 8” or “iPhone”.  The more competition there is on the topic or keywords obviously it is going to be more difficult to get any traction.  Focusing on a narrower topic like “GPS Track iPhone” or “reformat PC” will tend to work better. (BTW, feel free Google those terms to see who comes up at or near the top)
  • Be sure that your articles are 100% original, and high quality.  This means no shortcuts, no cheating, and no copy and paste.
  • Spell-check everything, and be sure that you use good grammar.
  • Be aware of what keywords that you are targeting, but focus on good writing instead of keyword stuffing.  Always write naturally with nothing more than a slight lean toward your keywords.
  • Include your keywords or phrase in your page title if you can, but make sure it’s natural and grammatically correct.
  • Try to make your page or post at least 600 words in length, preferably more.
  • When using images, use good alt=text with your keywords and be sure the image file has the keywords in the file-name.  You don’t want to miss out on that potential Google Images traffic.
  • Publish your page/post/article, then go do something else for a few weeks (like, creating more good content).  It will take time for the page to get indexed.

Basically, up to this point, do all the standard on-page SEO stuff – nothing special so far.

Throwing more of the same mud and going with the flow:

Now – Start watching your analytics closely and try to determine which of your pages are bringing in the most traffic – even if it’s not a lot.  Early on, for me, after 30 days only one or two pages would be will be bringing in more traffic than the others, if any.  A few would sometimes be drawing much more traffic.  It is the topics and keywords of these pages that you want to focus on.  If your website is newer it might take a while, so it’s important to always keep an eye on your stats.  I’ve had pages that sat dormant for a year or more and then for some unknown reason suddenly started brining in traffic.  If you notice a lot of comments or questions being posted (if your site or blog accepts comments) on a particular subject focus on those topics and keywords.

Now that you have identified which topics and keywords are picking up momentum and bringing in some traffic, focus on them by creating more pages on that same subject but with a slightly different twist.  For example if your first post was about creating a PayPal account, make the next article about how to verify your PayPal account.  Then another new post or page about how to transfer more money into your Paypal account, then another page about how to use the PayPal Resolution Center.  The key here is to pick up on which keywords started to rank well and then expand on, and create more content around those subjects and keywords.  If you start getting traction on multiple keywords and subjects, go with all of them and build more content around them.  That’s it – it is that simple.

Does this method work?

This whole “going with the flow” thing was a key part in my early success with Grownupgeek.com.  One year after I had created the website, because of this method the website was almost 100% different than when I created it. The website had grown with content and subjects that I never would have imagined or written about otherwise.  It was this constant going with the flow that that helped the website to grow and generate $5k after only six months, and much more each month since then.

I’m sure that a lot of SEO “Experts” are going to poo-pooh this method as too “over simplified” or “basic” to do any good.  My response to those self-proclaimed experts is “ok, Mr. Expert.. How many websites do you have that have generated almost half a million dollars in ad-revenue over the last few years?“.. In other words, be careful which ‘experts’ you pay attention to.  I’m not saying that all SEO experts are full of shit, but I am saying that a lot of them are. Bottom line is that this method works well enough for me to generate 10k – 20k visitors per day, so it can’t be all that ‘wrong’.  That much traffic isn’t record breaking, but when combined with the right monetization strategies, it’s more than plenty to generate a substantial income.

That said, this method will not work for everyone or on every website.  For best results (or, any results) you need a content-rich site with varying topics.  I have several websites, but I can only use this method on two of them because the scope of the others is too limited or it just does not make sense.  This method also will not translate into high traffic on every page that you create.  The “throw a lot of mud” part means that you must create a lot of good varying content because not all of it is going to ‘stick’.   But since good content is the cornerstone of good SEO and success, you really should be doing this anyway.

It’s all almost common sense, but I am surprised at how many new webmasters don’t think about about it. It’s not “fast”, nor “quick”, and it’s not a “weird trick”.  It takes work, some brain power, and patience – values that are strangely common amongst successful webmasters and bloggers.

5 thoughts on “My SEO Method

  1. I think this is a very strong method Rand, and thanks for sharing your experience. It’s funny that you mention this because I have a post that was published just last month that is bringing in about 100 visitors a day via search. Now I’m working on getting another post out asap. I probably haven’t taken advantage of this in the past, and have paid for it with volume drying up.

    Write good stuff a lot (don’t worry about Epic, that’s silly), and have patience. Capitalize when you uncover a topic that drives traffic.

    1. @twitter-18077461:disqus, you are right.. Between the SEO basics (that all webmasters should know/learn) and the “new” SEO (authorship, social signals, etc), I think that a lot of these “experts” will be going back to their jobs at McDonalds.

  2. Some of the ideas you mentioned are in the Yoast SEO Plugin. Great, short titles with the keyword. Well over 300 words of content and images. Subheadings are mentioned as well but not as important. I think everything you said makes perfect sense. Now with Google+ I can get even more out of these specific niches because my Google+ profile ranks for posts. Lots of great stuff in this article Rand.

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