Google’s mission as stated on the company information page is “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Yet, most websites are nothing but a hodge-podge of disorganized content without any central theme.
Unfortunately, that’s exactly what makes it impossible for them to rank for any competitive (read: traffic-bringing, money-making) keywords.
Take, for instance, internet marketing blogs.
Internet marketing in and of its own is a hugely vast topic that includes any and every subject from your mindset and personal development, to how to create a distinct social media presence, to how to rank your site on Google, to how to bring more targeted traffic to your site, and so on and so forth.
Writing content around ALL these topics is the very trap many bloggers fall into.
Not picking a specific niche within the internet marketing industry will most likely mean sporadic readership (readers like to visit blogs if they know what content they can expect from them) and lack of attention from the search engines (since you are not clearly telling them what your site is REALLY about).
Search engines are very sophisticated creations indeed; however, they still need to be told what the site is all about clearly and distinctly. That’s the only way they can decipher meaning.
If you want to bring TARGETED website traffic, you need to provide TARGETED information.
Establishing relevancy to a particular topic is what Google needs to see to tip the almighty search engine ranking scales in your favor.
Here’s why it’s so important – from the horse’s mouth:
As a rule, Google tries to find pages that are both reputable and relevant.
If two pages appear to have roughly the same amount of information matching a given query, we’ll usually try to pick the page that more trusted websites have chosen to link to.
Still, we’ll often elevate a page with fewer links or lower PageRank if other signals suggest that the page is more relevant.
For example, a web page dedicated entirely to the civil war is often more useful than an article that mentions the civil war in passing, even if the article is part of a reputable site such as Time.com.
It is the key to how Google works when it comes down to your site rankings.
So how do you establish a clear relevancy for a certain theme in a way that the search engines can easily match your site with the topical keywords?
First of all, you need to know what your site is all about.
High search engine ranking optimization can be easily damaged in two ways:
If you know what your site is really about, it’ll be easy to avoid either one of these mistakes.
The commonsense objection here is “of course, I know what my site is all about; silly question“.
I understand where you are coming from, but the thing is that there’s a huge difference between your perception of what your site is all about and the way the search engines actually see it.
In order for us to be objective here, we need to ask the following questions:
Let the digging begin!
The first most obvious, as well as the easiest way to determine your site theme is to analyze the data provided by any tracking software you might be using on your site.
Start by looking at what Google itself thinks your site is all about.
Google Webmaster Tools will actually provide you with a better picture than Google Analytics would in this particular case.
From your dashboard, simply click on “Keywords“.
Here’s a snapshot of what Google thinks of my site:
Of course, this is the analysis of my home page and it’s greatly influenced by the every-changing posts that I display there at any particular time.
Apparently, it’ll serve me right to stop mentioning my own name as much as I do now; as it is, Google thinks that Traffic Generation Cafe is more about “Ana” than any other subject theme…
Mind you, these are the most used keywords that Google found when crawling your home page, NOT the keywords that actually bring you any search engine traffic.
And this will be our next test to determine what our overall site theme actually is.
What are the most popular search terms that Google lists your site for?
Google Analytics is the best free tool to determine that.
To find the information in your GA account, from your Dashboard go to “Traffic Sources”, then “Keywords”.
That’s where you’ll see the ACTUAL traffic-generating keywords that Google finds your site to be relevant for.
Start checking them out to find common themes that connect them.
Yet another way to see if you are on the right track with your theme is to check out the sites that you consider to be your main competitors and see what they are currently ranking for.
Obviously, you wouldn’t have access to their analytics accounts, so I’ll give you one of the best tools I’ve ever used to spy on my competition.
SEMrush.com will give you a list of all the keywords any site is currently ranking for – the first 10 results for any search will be shown even if you are not their premium user.
You can dig even deeper and check out each individual page to see how well your competitors are doing in ranking pages for specific keywords.
At this point, you should have enough data at your fingertips to interpret which topics your site is legitimately relevant for and to understand why you have your current rankings.
Your next big step should be to make sure your blog structure reflects your overall theme and then continue writing the kind of content that will reinforce your standing with the search engines for those specific keywords, thus confirming your site relevance to the topic at hand.
Do you really want to write on the subjects that your site is not truly about? What’s the point of diluting your site theme and risk losing already existing rankings plus acquiring new rankings within the same theme?
Once you establish your site theme, it’s extremely important to stick with it: both for your readers’ and search engines’ sake.
After all, you want everyone to see you as first among peers – the most relevant resource on your subject.