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How to Win the SEO Game: Getting Them There is Only Half the Battle

You’re working on a website, to sell products and have a second stream of income. You’ve studied SEO, and you think you’ve got a list of keywords to bring traffic flowing to your site like the Mississippi flows to the Gulf of Mexico. What do visitors find when they get to your site? Getting traffic to your site is only half the battle – to keep them there, you’ve got to haveHow to Win the SEO Game: Getting Them There is Only Half the Battle something they want, and it’s got to be presented in a way that keeps their attention, or you’ve lost the war, so to speak.

What is Your Website About?

You have to know your product, and your audience, to successfully build your keywords list. However, knowing your product and audience does not guarantee you a website that converts traffic to sales. Users give you about two to five seconds on your landing page (the page your hits brings them to) before they decide to explore your site further, or to move on to the next entry in the results pool. It pays to develop a high-quality website, and to have someone who understands the user interface and design principles either help you build it, or build it for you.

Keep the Distractions to a Low Roar

Far too many websites build an extremely “busy” front page. They have animation and slide shows, and bright, vivid colors all screaming for your attention, not to mention the videos and ads on the sidebars. A good user interface designer understands the use of color and white space, when to use animation or not, and whether or not a slide show is productive. Most users click off a page when it’s so busy they can’t find what they need, and they got there in answer to a question about a need they have; chasing them away in an effort to appear catchy is not a good idea. While it’s one of your goals to make money on your site, sidebar ads that take a long time to load can contribute to a user leaving your site without converting a sale. Choose the ads you put on your landing page carefully; they’re there to make you money, but be sure they aren’t costing you more in the long run.

Don’t Require a Compass to Navigate Your Site

Once a user hits your landing page, keep the site navigation simple. Complex menus are not needed here; simple, drop-down menus to get to your content pages are your best bet. You don’t have to use the same verbiage as Microsoft – you can be witty with your items; however, don’t take too long to get to where they need to be, or the user will get discouraged and go back to the query results.

Keep Your Checkout Process Easy

You want return sales from users who find you through a query, but you don’t want to scare them away with a difficult checkout process. Let them fill a cart as they browse your site, and when they checkout, consider letting them do so as a guest. You can require an e-mail address on your guest page, so you can stay in touch, but requiring them to register in order to pay you money may just push them away. Give them the option, and if they’re truly hooked, they’ll go ahead and register; if not, use the e-mail to send sales notices, coupons – anything to keep your site in mind. Accept credit cards; if you don’t, use PayPal, or accept checks and money orders. It needs to be easy, or the user will find someone else to buy from.

Having spent the time and energy to build a great keywords list, be sure you have a great website to back it up.

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