One of the most important, if not the most important, skill sets to acquire for affiliate marketing is search engine optimization (SEO)
This skill set can be applied to all aspects of online marketing.
It doesn’t matter if you are doing referral marketing, running an online store, a blog, or any kind of online venture.
You are going to need how to optimize your content for the best rankings in search engines.
In this article we will look at what I consider to be the best place to learn SEO for affiliate marketing.
What Is Search Engine Optimization?
SEO is the practice of using techniques that make your content qualify as the most relevant to search engines such as Google.
In the old days, getting ranked in search engines was far easier than it is today.
It was so easy that quality, but poorly optimized, content could end up ranked far lower in search results than poor content that was well optimized.
This lead to readers finding spammy content rather than content that actually helped them with the term they searched for.
There were all kinds of what is known as black hat techniques.
Keyword stuffing, and even hiding keywords in white font on a white background, in order to make search engines think that the content was more relevant and therefore should appear top in results.
Those days are gone.
Now, the search engine algorithms are FAR more sophisticated, and aspects such as keywords are only part of the key to ranking.
Now, in order to rank, the content is judged by an estimated 200 factors by the algorithms.
No one is 100% sure of what these factors are or if there is actually 200, but everyone is in agreement that it is nothing like the old days.
Content now is judged on it’s usefulness to the user, page loading speed on both mobile and desktop, user interaction via comments on blog posts, outgoing backlinks to more relevant information, and much more.
SEO can be a balancing act.
Too many incoming backlinks can be an issue.
Backlinks from bad suspect sites can be harmful to rankings.
Not enough backlinks or too many outgoing links can be a negative factor.
Some people call it the “Google dance”
The algorithms are also constantly being tweaked and sometimes go through a huge update that can take a site that ranked top in results and slam it into obscurity overnight.
Best of all?
Google will not make public what they changed.
So this leaves the online world to figure it out for themselves.
Ahh, the Google dance…
Usually the SEO experts of the world figure things out pretty quickly and the world adapts.
Search results re-stabilize and the online world is back in order.
So long as your content is optimized to the new criteria.
If not, your content will find itself without traffic from search engines.
As you can imagine this is not good for revenue.
Can’t you just rely on social media traffic?
Of course, you could if you wanted to.
But by not getting ranked in search engine results you are leaving a LOT of traffic, and therefore potential revenue, on the table.
Social media is great for traffic, but it also a very crowded place these days.
Everyone who has an online venture is busily blasting out Tweets, Instagram posts, YouTube videos, and posts across multiple platforms.
It is a crowded field these days.
Unless you have a notable following built up, traffic will be slim in comparison to search engine results.
Search engine results are also more targeted in regards to customers.
A customer who searches for content is far more likely to purchase a product or service than someone who randomly encounters your tweet in a seemingly endless stream for that hashtag.
Thee is a huge difference in the mindset towards someone looing for something and someone who stumbles across something.
Although social media can provide a lot of traffic, it is not really targeted traffic.
After all, if you are looking for a product, service, or an answer to a question, do you search in Google or Twitter?
Again, I’m not saying ignore social media, it should be part of your online venture.
I am saying that if you are selling a product or service, the results will seriously pale in comparison to search engine traffic.
This especially rings true for affiliate marketers.
You can post links to your link filled content all day on social media, but the customers you seek are more likely to come to you if you can rank in search engine results.
Ok, so where can I learn search engine optimization?
You can attempt to learn SEO by searching for information online.
There’s plenty of it available with more every single day.
Some of the information is outdated, flat out wrong, or, even worse, straying into black hat territory.
If you implement the wrong, or dubious, techniques, your content will not rank or even get de-indexed from search engines.
You may have the best intentions and be trying to stay as far away as possible from black hat techniques, but do you really know the difference?
There are a lot of self proclaimed “experts” online who will gladly sell your courses that contain “secret techniques” to smash search engine results.
I can almost guarantee you that these techniques, even if they are effective now, will be punished by search engines at some stage.
Google and co hate SEO techniques that try to fool their algorithms and manipulate results.
Those days are gone.
Once they find a loophole, rest assured it will be closed very quickly if it causes content of a lesser quality to dominate search results.
If you want to stay on top of search engine results, then you need to apply the correct techniques.
Dance in step with Google, don’t tread on it’s toes.
The best, and most reliable, place I’ve found to learn up to date cutting edge, and ethical, SEO is Wealthy Affiliate.
The basic training is free with a premium advanced training option if you so desire.
Obviously the advanced training is exactly what it says.
But the free basic training will still teach you what you need to know in order to rank in search engines.
The training, basic and advanced, is primarily aimed at learning affiliate marketing, but the techniques can be applied to any online business venture.
So, even if you do not practice affiliate marketing and have your own products, you can still benefit greatly from the training.
The training is updated daily and is extensive, current, and most importantly, effective.
If you wish to take a look around for free and even start learning techniques today, then simply read the article I have written that describes the platform and also links to the free training membership.
There are no credit card details or any private details needed to join.
Simply create a use name and log in password.
It can be beneficial to fill out a basic profile so you can interact with the community there.
It is 2.3 million members strong and is full of very knowledgeable people who can help with questions you may have.
Read the what is wealthy affiliate article
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But there are other methods.
The one we will look at here is by using your mobile phone.