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In this course, author David Booth explains what search engine optimization (SEO) is and how you can start using it to increase your website's visibility to search engines and attract the right kind of traffic to the right kinds of pages on your site. Discover how to read a results page and find your ranking, and see how rankings affect both large and small businesses. Then find out how to implement basic optimization strategies, like conducting keyword research, building inbound links, optimizing your pages and content, and measuring your successes and progress while planning for a long-term SEO strategy. SEO for ecommerce, local search, and an international audience round out this comprehensive look at the basics of SEO.
Earning links back to you from people and websites you don't control is a necessary but challenging thing to do, but don't forget about the links you do have complete control over. Determining how you link to pages on your own site is important for search engines as well. Internal linking helps search engines understand the structure of your website, the topics and themes of your content, and even the relative importance each page has on your site. We can break down internal linking into two different types: Navigation links and Contextual links.
Navigation links are typically links found on the top, side, or bottom of your web pages. You can think of them as part of the framework of your site. Navigation links are present on every page of the site, and they're used to help guide users as they click around your site and find what they're looking for. Search engines will analyze your navigation links to determine a hierarchy of pages that drill down from your homepage, and they will be able to see how your content is organized, and how flat or deep your site's structure is.
Outside the navigational framework of your website, you'll have contextual links. These are links within the content of a specific page that point to another page on your site. And just like external links, these can be very helpful when the content of one page makes reference to the content of another page. Contextual links help users by cross- referencing other relevant information, but they help search engines too. Search engines can look at the anchor text of an internal link to help it understand the content of the page the link points to, and internal links help the search engines determine topical relevancy between pages, and the importance of a page, by the quantity of internal links pointing to it.
When you're building your website, make sure to give some thought and planning to the navigational elements you plan to use across all of your pages. And when you're writing content, make sure you're taking advantage of linking to other pages on your site with contextual links that use appropriate anchor text. Both your users and the search engines will appreciate it.
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