Maximizing your SEO visibility and SEO rankings will help your website reach the right audience at the right moment. Find expert advice and information to help increase your site's SEO popularity.

SEO Popularity: The Third Ingredient for Long-Term SEO Visibility

by icrossingSEO
The previous two articles, SEO Fundamentals and SEO Marketing Strategy, focused on the controllable aspects of SEO - eliminating technical obstacles, and using relevant keywords to achieve SEO visibility and engage a wider audience with your business.

SEO popularity, the third and final component to maximize SEO visibility and rankings for your business, addresses the external tactics to drive traffic and conversions to your website.


The primary method search engines utilize to find websites is from following links from other relevant, on-topic sites. Quality links from other websites can play a significant role in the SEO visibility of your web page(s).


When acquiring external links, it's important to focus on deeper areas of your site instead of your homepage - category, sub-category and product pages are ideal. This can improve the SEO popularity of those pages and ultimately improve their SEO rankings. Improved search rankings for deeper pages can also lead to a shorter conversion path and improved online sales.


Where should I find relevant sites to solicit links? A great place to start locating links to your product pages is your business partners - wholesalers, manufacturers and other suppliers. Not only can this improve the SEO popularity, it can lead to greater sales of those products, which creates a win-win opportunity for you and your business partners.


Moreover, web directories can be useful sources for inbound links, due to the fact that they are trusted sources of information for consumers and search engines. Directories such as Best of the Web,, Yahoo! Directory and DMOZ are high-quality, trusted directories to which every business should submit their listing. When submitting a business listing to a directory, be sure to include your web page's targeted keyword(s) in the link text and description.


Although some directories require a nominal fee to review your business listing - which is an acceptable practice - it is never recommended that you pay for links. Google, Yahoo! and other search engines publically state that buying links from sites can lead to the buyer's site being removed from their indexes.


Social Media


In addition to actively soliciting links, there are other tactics that can improve SEO popularity and rankings virally. Allowing consumers to post comments and links about your site via social media sites such as Digg, Facebook, Delicious and Twitter can greatly increase exposure for your business, lead to viral traffic and links, as well as improved SEO visibility. Consumers will have the ability to post negative comments about your business, so it's recommended to research this option carefully.


Publishing content via articles and blogs can also create additional consumer reach and can lead to greater SEO popularity. Publishing this information via RSS and email marketing are excellent, cost-effective ways to ensure your consumers receive this information. Please note: To maintain consumer interest, this type of consumer engagement requires publishing information frequently - and on regular schedules.


Sitemap Feeds


If your site has a significant amount of "unchangeable" obstacles, sitemap feeds can be an alternative method to help search engines find and index your site's content. Not to be confused with a web page sitemap, a sitemap feed is an XML file of your site's URLs that can be submitted to search engines. Google, Yahoo!, MSN Live and Ask use the same sitemap feed protocol via


Removing obstacles and enabling search engines to crawl your site naturally is preferred over sitemap feeds. Sitemaps are highly recommended for mobile sites due to the limited amount of inbound link opportunities.


Integrated Marketing Channels


Integrating all marketing channels into a cohesive message can help create long-term SEO popularity.


It's important to understand that your other marketing campaigns drive search behavior. Defining targeted keywords as the core of your overall marketing strategy and integrating them into all marketing channels, such as paid search, banner/display ads, email marketing, social and offline marketing, can help ensure that your business is visible for all residual searches from other marketing campaigns, such as TV and print.


In conclusion, a comprehensive SEO marketing strategy addresses all technical issues, clearly defines and integrates targeted keywords, and ensures other relevant sites and marketing outlets speak to your business.


About the Author: Richard Chavez is an SEO Manager at iCrossing, a leading digital marketing agency, who develops search strategies for Fortune 500 clients in the financial services, publishing, CPG and pharmaceutical sectors. He is also a frequent search-industry conference speaker.