Virtual Theming: One way to revitalise your website structure
There are many factors that play into a search engine’s determination of your website’s ranking in its SERPs (search engine results pages), and trying to stay on top of the heap of results Google, Bing or Yahoo! may return, entails employing a number of SEO tactics regularly. This can keep your content fresh and your pages favourable in the eyes of web crawlers.
In an earlier post, we detailed important strategies websites can employ to increase their rankings. One of which, virtual theming, can help you capitalise on building links throughout your website, thus promoting the site to search engines as an authoritative source on your selected keywords and subject areas.
Whether your website already has enough relevant content or not, you’ll still need to start out by identifying keywords you’d like pages on your website to carry. In any case, you’ll want to choose a key phrase consisting of two to five words, then a secondary set of keywords and phrases if you like.
For example, if this blog post was a dedicated, static page, we might consider a key phrase of “Virtual Theming”, and for secondary key words we could choose something like “SEO tips“. Since we may have similar articles on the website, we may want to choose some commonly recurring keywords as well. Here’s how:
Once you have a general idea of the subject area you’d like to focus on, it’s a good idea to have a thorough search of your own website for pages that possibly relate. This can be achieved by searching with Bing, Google and other search engines by using your terms and the “site:yourURL.com” qualifier.
Your preferred search engine will return all results from your site related to the original query. It may also be a good idea to search your key words both with and without quotes around it, as this may change rankings for the pages.
Creating a web within your website
Virtual theming can be thought of as creating a secondary index of your web page based on purposeful contextual links connecting to a main page, as well as cross-linking to other secondary pages.
First, you’ll need to choose your ideal landing page from your existing pages or, if you will be creating fresh content, identifying the most general terms related to the subject web users may be searching for. From there, you can create links in new or existing content that use relevant contextual clues and which will send users and search engines back to the preferred landing page, establishing it, in the search engine’s eyes, as the predominant page for the subject area on your website.
You can sometimes gauge how best to implement virtual theming by analysing competitors’ pages to see what works and what doesn’t. Top websites for your chosen keyword could hold the answers of how to best deploy your background network of interlinked pages. Simply browse top websites returned for your keyword and find how they’ve been structured, gauging how many pages link back to the primary page and how they link. You can search other sites simply by using the previously mentioned “site:” qualifier on your preferred search engine.
According to experts, these ranking pages will prove to have over 50 per cent of total pages in their ‘web’ linking directly back to the landing page – boosting its authority – and so should yours. Just ask Wikipedia, which pioneered the method to a certain extent. Through effective interlinking, the online encyclopaedia now ranks in the top ten for many specific key phrases.
In time, after you have made changes to establish your landing page as an authority on the subject material and search engines pick up on these changes, you should hopefully notice an increase in your page’s ranking in search results pages for certain key terms.
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