One of the primary objectives of SEO (search engine optimization) is to create structure and manage multiple layers and processes to create an optimal signal for search engines. One of those signals is link equity. Wasted link equity is often responsible for segments of a website not receiving enough prominence for keywords from search engine algorithms.
As a result, the pages in question do not produce enough dynamism to offset the competition or relevance thresholds needed to become buoyant and “rise-up” in search engine result pages.
In order for a page to rank effectively in search engines it requires a few common denominators:
- The page should be supported by a top-down relevant and topical site architecture
- The page needs to be indexed and pass on link flow to other vital areas to prevent stagnation
- The page should receive significance in the hierarchy of pages via internal or external links
- The page should have sufficient content to distinguish itself based on the conditions of the site architecture or continuity in anchor text from both internal and /or external sources.
- The page should have enough deep links in order to support the ranking objective
Your website architecture is the most important aspect of search engine optimization. If you get this part wrong, it will require an immense amount of time or workarounds to mend the inherent flaws in poor site architecture.
For example, at the onset of any new website, the home page will always contain the lion’s share or the link flow moving throughout the site. Despite the reason why such as (1) it is always included as a naming convention http://www.domain.com/ prior to any page and (2) it is the most linked to page in the site (until new pages exist) in the site produce this phenomenon.
Only link to second tier landing pages from the home page and only link to critical third-tier landing pages from the second tier pages that receive direct link flow from the homepage. This preserves the prominence and establishes a pecking order when layered with internal links in the next phase of optimization.
All site segments linked to from the home page will transfer a proportionate sliver of link flow based on the total amount of outbound links from each page. Ideally, the only links leaving your homepage should be to other sub folders or landing pages that are included in your primary ranking objectives. Think of it like a pitcher of water and each link you have leaving that page is like poking a hole in it. You should also keep outbound or internal links to a minimum to avoid hemorrhaging vital ranking factor.
For example, a few rules of thumb are; you should not (1) link to one page with more than one anchor text or (2) link out from critical pages with irrelevant anchor text in order to preserve the impact of the link equity to the target page. For example stay away from “click here” or long strings of keywords. Each additional word you add in anchor text (in the link) the less concentrated the anchor text becomes for each individual shingle.
The same applies for title tags, the longer they become, the less emphasis and authority each word in the title becomes. The idea is make titles, H1 tags and links laser-like when possible and if you are targeting too many keywords on a single page, then make another page and segment the keywords for a higher degree of concentration.
Indexation is the first step of optimization, if a page has too many parameters (if it is dynamically generated) then you should consider using a mod rewrite or URL re-writer to consolidate URL’s and include primary keywords that are the focal point for the ranking. Also consider that multiple pages that are similar in content or context (such as multiple meta titles, descriptions or tags) or a page that is essentially the template without content will often be ignored by search engine spiders (to preserve computing power and resources).
When you consider the amount of new pages being added to the web and all of the regurgitated, re-purposed or lackluster content online, search engines like to keep their index clean by assessing the top 1000 results for any given query. Duplicate content (having similar internal content) is one of the main reasons (aside from not consolidating your server settings) for multiple pages in a site to “not make the grade”.
So, the takeaway here is to (1) make each page specific (2) link and or cross-link internal pages based on relevant keywords as they occur contextually in documents (instead of blocks such as the sidebar footer or navigation).
Internal and External Links:
Once any page starts to rank for its primary keywords, then that page can be used to rank other related keywords and key phrases. Think of it as ranking by affinity; there is no better source of peer review than using a page that you can completely control (your own sites internal links).
There are essentially three ways for a page to increase strength (1) time – such as the algorithmic grandfather effect as a result of trust (2) internal links (which can pass link flow and page rank) and (3) external inbound links from other sites.
Through successfully managing these three variables you can (a) increase indexation (b) restructure the hierarchy or relevance of page order to keyword significance and (c) cement each page for a given keyword or key phrase.
The site architecture should lend itself to acquiring the more competitive keywords and the internal links combined with the site architecture can topple most mid tail phrases. To capture the more competitive vertical phrases, you will require both the appropriate hierarchy of internal links and site architecture supported by authoritative themed links from sources already ranking for the keyword variants or sites which transcend the theme (such as editorial sources with high Pagerank).
It is the blending of the IP diversity of the inbound links being deep linked to specific pages, the site architecture, on page content, internal links and time that create a synergy that is a winning combination for methodical ascent in a competitive online marketplace.
Obviously the time line of which keywords percolate first and show signs of breaking lose and rising to the top are all concurrent to the significance of the metrics addressed above.
With search algorithms becoming more sophisticated daily, things such as link velocity, links clusters and IP diversity are being used to cross-reference validity of off page factors. Therefore, the more emphasis you can augment using on page SEO, the easier it will be for you to control your own rate of ascent as the relevance is coming from within the site, as opposed to waiting for other sites to and / or links to push you to the top.