High quality content is the foundation upon which a hub is founded. Poor content, with the appropriate research and marketing process, may attract a constant stream of traffic — but will generally lead to high bounce-back rates and poor reader loyalty (few returning visitors).
This article is about everything but the writing of your hub. I will deal with the pre-production, editing and post-production routines that will help your hub break free of the clutter and gain both visibility and a little profit.
I’m aware that many hubbers have little interest to re-invent themselves as online marketers and SEO experts. The problem is that no matter how good you are you will need to compete with other (usually lower quality) resources in order to have your work read. In order to tap into a traffic source, you will need to begin by considering your keywords (which you will insert as tags in your hub).
Google Keyword Tool (free) – Allows you to generate efficient keywords by comparing and understanding their popularity, competition and profitability. Simply insert your choice of generic keywords into the text field and play around with the results. Do not attempt to choose keywords based purely on the volume of their traffic, the competition is too high and you will inevitably be swamped. It is better to gradually build up to more popular keywords as your hub increases in authority.
For a more in-depth understanding of Google’s keyword tool, please click here.
Market Samurai (free trial) – Possibly the most popular and celebrated commercial tools available today. Market Samurai allows you to generate laser-targeted keywords swiftly and expertly by filtering results by a large array of variables. A free 40 day trial is available to new users, I suggest trying it out!
Micro Niche Finder – My personal favorite commercial tool. It makes the task of generating boatloads of golden keywords a breeze (works similarly to Market Samurai though I find it much more rapid — also includes trends and brainstorming options for when you are feeling creatively handicapped).
Wordtracker – Wordtracker is a hugely popular commercial keyword tool and knowledge-base. The product itself offers more features and opportunity for golden keyword hunters. The catch? It costs a fair amount of money, (currently $239 per annum) I would recommend this only if you are comfortably able to cover this from your Hubpages earnings (though if you’re reading this, chances are you aren’t).
Keyword Density Checker (free) – This is a tool which measures the amount of times a keyword (both phrase or exact) appears on a page. Wikipedia quotes the following regarding keyword density usage:
Keyword density is the percentage of times a keyword or phrase appears on a web page compared to the total number of words on the page. In the context of search engine optimization keyword density can be used as a factor in determining whether a web page is relevant to a specified keyword or keyword phrase
Keyword Suggestion Tool (free) – Ideally, the above tools grant you far better depth and information, but using this tool is fast, and perfect for testing some ideas.
(under construction — will be constantly updated!)
Your hub’s content, however well-written, is only half the job. Driving traffic to your website will require two forms of maintenance — post-production maintenance and circumstantial updating (i.e updating your hub, should events require an update). Luckily for us, Hubpages allows you to alter the content and structure (including keywords and title) after publishing, without resorting to an editor’s queue, that is fantastic for our SEO purposes (search engine optimization).
(a) Post-Production Tools
Meta Tag Analyzer (free) – A meta tag analyzer will give you a great deal of information about your hub, as seen by a crawler. While many of its findings are not directly within your control (the amount of links, robots and author tags) you can use this tool to get an idea about how relevant your page is to the title and how quickly the page loads — both important tools for SEO. Make adjustments as necessary.
Link popularity (free) – A fantastic tool that allows you to see how popular your hub is compared to some benchmarks and how your inbound link empire is coming along!
(i) Free writing (hub or not) tools – I encourage hubbers to copy and paste their work from a word processor instead of using the text capsules as an editor. Good word processors allow you greater features, performance, flexibility and a locally saved version of the file will save your hide in the unlikely event that a database or script collapses (yes, it happens!).
Open Office (free) – An open source clone of the Microsoft office suite (including Powerpoint and Excel!).
Google Docs (free) – A solid web based word processor.
Abiword (free)- A lightweight, cross-platform editor will all the popular features you need (it can open MS files as well, so fear not).
There is a lot more to cover about Hubpages SEO and SEO in general so look out for my next post!