SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) can be puzzling if you’re either just starting out with a new website or even an experienced web-master. With thousands upon thousands of websites giving hundreds of tips and tricks to optimise your site, it can be a bit overwhelming and off putting not knowing where or how to start.
Many sites even offer their services to you for payment that claim they will get you traffic and high search rankings, but who to trust? Anyway, why pay someone else to do what you can do for free.
This guide will show the best simple SEO tips in my opinion to get your Gaming site or similar site off to a good start when trying to increase traffic and more importantly, those Search Engine rankings.
Meta Tags and Descriptions
The most easiest and efficient starting area when it comes to SEO is making sure your site has Meta Tags and Meta Descriptions.
This is the HTML code for adding Meta Tags and a Meta Description:
Within the tags in your pages you need to insert this piece of HTML unless it has already been put in for you. Either add this code to each page you have on-line or if you have a large website and are using Header and Footer sections, you can add this code to your Header.php file again between the tags and then this will add the Meta details to all your pages that run the same Header.
Meta Description –
The description should be a short sentence or two that describes your website, what information you have to offer and what you do. Preferably don’t have it any longer than 150 characters as most search engines will only read the first 150 characters before they deem to have enough information about your site.
Meta Description Dont’s –
*Don’t put your URL in the description.
*Don’t have more than 150 Characters.
*Don’t capitalise every word.
*Don’t overly spam your keywords (no more than 2 of the same words).
Meta Description Do’s –
*Do make it readable and with proper grammar as human users will use the description to decide if they want to view your site or not.
*Do make it to the point, short and sweet.
*Describe exactly what users will find on your site.
Meta Tags –
Meta Tags are keywords relevant to your website and the content that is available on your website. Search Engines use Meta Tags for when users Search specific keywords in their Search Engine and match the keyword up with the Keywords you have in your Meta Tags and in your site. We would suggest to have no more than 15 Keywords, but make sure that they are relevant to your sites content for maximum usage.
Meta Tag Dont’s –
*Don’t add words that don’t match up with what’s on your site.
*There is no need to have multiple tags of the same individual words.
*Don’t have more than 15 Keywords.
Meta Tag Do’s –
*Do use a variety of phrases. E.g if you have playable games on your site don’t just have ‘games’ as a meta tag word, also use phrases like ‘free online games’, ‘play free games’, ‘play certain game name’ as this will give a more exact match in the search engines.
*Do match up the Meta Tag keywords with words that will be found on your site (this is needed to increase Meta Tag relevance).
Once you’ve added or updated your Meta Tags it may take from 72 Hours to 2 Weeks or more before they are Updated in the Search Engine listings depending on how often the Search Engines crawl your site for updates. So you wont see results straight away. Work and patience is the key with the engines!
Writing and Distributing Articles
Articles are a great source for exposure, visibility and high PR back links.
If there’s a specific area or category that you have a high interest or knowledge in then why not write a short article about it. Articles can then be used to add to your blog, adding a new page for your site with the article in and submitting it to article directories.
Articles are useful as they can bring in visitors that are interested in the content and by adding the article to article directories you can add a link back to your site. This means that you can get free high pr backlinks from the article directory sites back to your site. Other website owners can also use your article and add it to their blog also importing the back link, so from one article you get the chance of it being added to multiple websites all containing a link back to your site. This is a great way to get traffic and free back links.
For the best relevancy, if you do write any articles try and make them relevant to the content of your website. So if you write an article about games, and it has links to your game site then they keywords are all linked to the same category of gaming, meaning the Search Engines give the article and back links higher priority.
Article Do’s –
*Ensure each article has a minimum of 400 words.
*If you use the article on your own site/blog add some relevant pictures to make the writing more appealing and eye catching.
*Add the article to well known article directories (this is free).
*When adding to Article Directories insert a link to your website in the Author details area.
*Do spell check and grammar check before you release the article.
Article Dont’s –
*Don’t add URL’s inside the article itself as this will get rejected by the Article Directories.
*Don’t spam the same word, don’t use the same word for more than 3% of the entire words. E.g for a 500 word article don’t use the same word more than 15 times.
Game Reviews & Walk-through’s
Game reviews can also be used along with Articles, especially if you have playable games on your site.
Instead of writing an article about a random thing, pick a game that you like and write a review about it. You can include things such as: Game play, Controls, Interface, Graphics, Upgrades and Overall Experience.
Game reviews are great if you have flash games on your site as they will match your content perfectly and with new releases you can write new reviews which players can find and read before they play.
Guides and Walk-through’s are great for mega traffic, especially if you are one of the first to get a Walk-through out for a new game. These type of guides can take a lot more time and research to complete, but the pay back is worth it if you play your cards right.
If you decide to write a Walk through I would suggest you to add it directly on your site, as when a user searches for the certain guide there is a higher chance it will show up high in the search with your sites URL.
The best games to write walk throughs for are Escape, Strategy, Physics and then new advanced games like SAS Zombie Assault and Sift Heads.
Walk through Do’s –
*Add images that both make the Walk through less dull and help the user with certain information.
*Pick a game that is recently new or has few or no walk throughs already (search in advance).
*Write clear and useful information.
*Include lists such as Weapons, Upgrades and Levels and what they cost or what you need to do to unlock them – this is information that users look for.
Walk through Dont’s –
*Don’t copy or rip off someone else’s work – this will bite you back in the end for copyright and non-unique content.
1 Way Link Building
1 Way link building is getting or creating links back to your site from other websites, preferably with high traffic and/or PR. These links will contain Anchor text with your sites keyword. Search Engines sometimes determine Search Rankings on websites by the amount and quality of back links they have on other websites.
What is Anchor Text?
When you create a link, instead of the link text being the URL;
You can change it to say text;
Your Keywords (these words will be clickable and redirect to your site)
This is done by the following link code:
*<a* href=”http://www.yoursite.com”>PUT KEYWORD HERE</a*>*
(remove the stars)
Having links on other websites is good but if you have your sites keywords in the URL Text it is even better as this is one of the ways some Search Engines use to determine your Search Rankings.
Creating links can be done in a few ways –
*Add your details to Website Directories, Site Directories are like catalogues full of other websites in category order. A lot of Website Directories are free to add your own site.
*Add your site’s link with Anchor text in your Forum Signature – Do not flood or spam forums with your links, just add one link in your signature.
*If you have a favourite blog you like to read and comment on then add the above link code at the end of your comment. If you spam blogs then 99% of your comments will be rejected, so make it genuine!
*As I said above, write articles and have a link back to your site!
Link Trading is swapping Back links with similar sites to your own. If you use a Forum with other people that have similar websites or have friends with the same category sites then you can enquire about Link Trading with them.
Link Trading is the basis of you adding a back link to your friend’s site on your site. And in return they add a link to your site from their site.
Link Trading Do’s –
*Try and only Link Trade with people with the same site category as you.
*Use Anchor Text in your friends back link to your site.
*Add an area on your web site for these Link Trade links to go under a heading like: ‘Friends’, ‘Similar Sites’ or ‘Useful Sites’ etc to keep them all together.
*Try and Link Trade with high PR and sites over 12 months old.
Link Trading Dont’s –
*We wouldn’t recommend more than 7 Link Trades at any one time, you do not want too many outgoing links on your site as this can have an adverse effect.
*Don’t link trade with Gambling, Porn, Hacking or Hate sites.
Advertising is a good method to gain traffic to your website if you have the money to spend.
However, most of the big Advertising companies such as Google and Microsoft offer free advertising for signing up to their services. They will normally send you a voucher code for a certain amount up to $100/75 that you can use to try out their services before you need to make a deposit.
Hosting companies also from time to time offer these same type of Voucher codes when you join with them as an incentive. There’s plenty of vouchers to go around for first time users of these advertising services, all you need to do is have a quick search!
Playable Games Content
The content that is on your site is what you want people to see and use, so you need to make every effort to make the content on your site different from the thousand other sites, make it unique, make it look good and make it easy to use.
As I am talking mostly about Gaming sites, you may have playable games embedded in your site for users to play. Even this game content is easily SEO-able, all these games will have an area of text on your site for Instructions on how to play or a Description about the game. This is the part you should be looking at making unique as it will be the main piece of text on the game page for the Search Engines to read.
For each game I recommend you to re-write the description/instructions yourself. This gives you a chance to add in juicy keywords and more relevant information that is both useful for your players and in search.
I would try to get each Game Description up to 70-100 Words – make it unique, don’t copy other people!
With the new Google update codenamed ‘Panda’, now is the best time to make your site as unique as you can. Panda is Google’s new weapon in finding unique websites that don’t just copy other peoples work and text. Pushing unique sites to the top of the rankings while other sites that contain the same standard game descriptions as another thousand sites will get knocked off the rankings quite a bit!
Every one of us on this Earth is unique – Make your website that way too.
Thumbnails & Images
This is a simple tip – users don’t want a web page full of text. Use images (good quality ones) to liven up your sites pages and make it look more interesting to the users eye. Break up large pieces of text with relevant pictures of what your talking about.
For your game categories and lists include good quality and appealing thumbnails or screen shots to get the user interested.
Image Tips –
*Keep each image as low a file size as possible, preferably under 25kb each or less.
*Don’t use overly stretched or blotchy images – this is very off putting to a user.
*Use Alt Tags on all your images…
Using Alt Tags is basically naming the images that are showing on your site. As Search Engines can’t see what the image shows, using an Alt Tag will tell the search engine what the image is about. This can also help increase your sites visibility in the search engines. especially if your site has a lot of images.
To edit your images to include Alt Tags all you need to do is add a tiny tiny extra piece of code.
This is your normal image insert code with size proportions:
This is the code with an Alt Tag:
You can tell if you have set these up properly or not as if you hold your mouse over the image, the Alt Tag text will be displayed.
So, these are some simple yet effective methods of starting out when SEO’ing your site. But remember that getting your site noticed in the Search Engines is not instant and will take work and patience. It can take anywhere between 72 Hours to 8 weeks for any benefits to start working. Just don’t give up, try to do a little SEO once a week but keep it constant and soon enough the effects will start to show.
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