96% of New Zealanders start every web search on Google.
Even when they know the address of your website (the domain name or URL) some 44% of site visitors will type the address into Google's search box, instead of the browser address box.
This underlines the crucial importance of getting on those search engines...
With a new site or a new client I go through these stages:
1. Getting on Google
And Yahoo, MSN, Ask Jeeves, etc.
I use a combination of direct submission, sitemaps, and link-building to get new sites visited and indexed within a few days.
2. Measuring results
There are only 2 real measures of an SEO campaign:
- Total traffic from search, and
- Money you earned from search visitors. Dollars.
Any other numbers can be misleading. Even traffic figures can include thousands of visitors who have no plans to ever do business with you.
3. Page 1 for "your business name"
This is an important milestone - and so is ranking first for your business name.
4. Page 1 for every relevant search
This is where the hard work starts.
Remember that search traffic is not under your control. You can be on page 1 then tomorrow you are half-way down page 3 for the same search.
That's why I recommend getting visitors from other sources as well. Like PPC.
The SEO optimization work divides into 3 areas:
Technical site set-up
There are some behind-the-scenes issues to check against a 15-point checklist. If your site is wrongly set up then your SEO results will suffer.
You may need to split some pages, combine pages, just change other pages.
In 2009 this is still a very effective way to get a good ranking on all search engines.