Optimizing a personal web site for search engines presents a unique challenge as compared with business or commercial sites that need a whole team of SEO experts working on nothing else but to make sure that the web site is prominently positioned on search results returned for the keyword phrase being targeted.
The most limiting factor that personal web sites faces is the lack of financial resources do undertake the search engine optimization project. A second but less significant difference but more favorable for personal web site owners is that the keyword phrase that the site seeks to target is not as competitive as those of the bigger web sited. A third and likewise favorable difference for the personal web sites is that the web site being optimized is typically less small and the task can be easily undertaken by one person.
Perhaps the most important factor that should be well taken care of beforehand is the clarity of the keyword phrase being targeted. This is to make sure that there are enough and definite keyword phrases to work on when building the landing pages.
Start by reviewing the on-site landing page for congruence with search engine optimization principles. Make sure that the description Meta tag contains the keyword phrases being targeted. Next review the text on the on-site landing page. Make sure that the most important keyword phrase is used in this landing page. Put the keyword phrase on the title tag as well as on the title of the text on the landing page. Ensure also that the keyword phrase is used on the headings of the on-site landing page.
The next thing to do is to write off-site landing pages that can be posted on any of your other web sites that are older than the one being optimized. Off-site landing pages are highly optimized pages that are strategically posted on other older web sites which have a greater chance of being placed prominently on the initial search engine results pages. They will contain a link that will point to the web site being optimized. Make sure that the linking phrase used for this link matches the title of the on-site landing page. As many off-site landing pages may we written and posted as there are keyword phrases that are being targeted. The important thing here is to focus each off-site landing page on just one keyword phrase that is being targeted.
Off-site landing pages accomplish two things. First, they provide a means to enable more prominent search engine results placement that the new web site cannot hope to accomplish. Secondly, it provides for a means to establish a valuable link to the new web site which would hopefully add to the new site's page rank.
The next thing that needs to be done is to write landing page articles and post these to article submission web sites that provide effective search engine placement services. By submitting highly optimized landing pages to these web sites, the opportunity of landing on the first few pages of the search engine results is increased tremendously. This is because the developers of these web sites know how search engine works and they have this uncanny ability to place high on the search engine results pages. Submission of highly optimized landing pages to these sites can tremendously push the landing page higher on the search engine results especially if the keyword phrase being targeted is a highly competitive one.
Submitting highly optimized short news items to announcement services could provide an added boost to the traffic that can be pushed to the new web site. These services also have their own way of ranking high in search engine results so it would really be a waste of free resources not to use them. Again, as many highly optimized short news releases should be submitted with each one targeting a particular keyword phrase.
The last activity which could take a lifetime to accomplish is to continuously monitor the ranking of the landing pages on the search engine results pages and to adjust keyword parameters in the text or Meta information of both on-site and off-site landing pages.
Finally, let me reiterate the old SEO adage that all your efforts will be thrown to waste if you happen to target the wrong keyword phrase. However, as humans we are bound to make this mistake which means that we have to start again from the beginning and redo all the landing pages using the correct keyword phrases. But the best reward for making this mistake is the tremendous increase in know-how and the phenomenal increase in confidence that we develop as we pursue our goal of conquering the search engine.
Lastly, I leave this word of wisdom to you search engine optimization practitioners: Conquering the search engine is like Don Quixote fighting the windmill; that makes SEO work really challenging.