Search Engine Marketing Tips

Landing Page Best Practices and Expert Tips (and some general SEO/SEM tips)

By Phil Yeh

  • Every page has a page name identified by a high Trellian-score key phrase most relevant to that particular page. For example, a page that talks about Jiu-Jitsu tournaments should have the page name: jiu-jitsu-tournaments.htm with the URL: (assuming "jiu jitsu tournaments" is the highest-Trellian-score way to describe that subject). Use hyphens to separate words - Google ignores underscores!

  • Every page has a unique Title Tag that includes 2-3 key phrases (63 characters max), separated by hyphens, commas, or pipes. The site name ( appears in the Title Tag only at the end (if at all). For example, for automotive site, the Title Tag might look like: New Cars - New Car Quotes -

  • Every page has a unique Meta Description and a unique set of Meta Keywords (3-5 relevant key phrases, avoid over-stuffing). Keep Meta Description to 150 characters max and include targeted key phrases in the Meta Description at least once each

  • Every page has a unique H1 tag as close as possible to the top of the <body>. Style in external CSS to achieve desired look. Use H2 and H3 for less important key phrases

  • All links (internal and external) should use anchor text that includes the keywords of the page that is being linked to. Whenever possible, don't link to any page on the site using the site name ( as the link text. Make sure the link and text are not stand-alone, but buried in as much relevant content as possible (shoot for at least one complete sentence before and after, with the anchor text existing within another complete sentence). Consult your friendly neighborhood search engine marketing expert if you're not sure how to do this. The preceding sentence is an example of how to use anchor text for the homepage of Also, whenever possible, include only one link per page to the targeted/linked page. If you have multiple links to the same target page from one page, try to use the same anchor text. If that's impossible, the link higher up in the code should have the more desired anchor text

  • An additional note on external back-links: Avoid having too many reciprocal links. Put the extra work into creating 3-way links (A links to B, B links to C, and C links to A)

  • If you have multiple homepages that were developed for A/B/multivariate testing, the version with the highest score on sits at the top-level domain. Don't forward from your index page to another page

  • Separate content from style as much as possible. Place all styles in external CSS, link to it in <head>. Avoid using inline styles and header styles. Create CSS selectors to define any HTML elements that need styling. Avoid using deprecated HTML tags for styling, including <font>, <strong>,etc.; define fonts and style text in external CSS. As much as possible, place JavaScript in external file, link to it in <head>

  • Limit tables, especially nested tables. Instead, use div elements and position/style with CSS selectors

  • Every page should have minimum 2-3 paragraphs worth of keyword-heavy text, and follow “All text as text” rule (IE: text embedded in images don't count toward this rule-of-thumb). Exceptions to “all text as text” rule: Logo of site, maybe one primary call-to-action adjacent to the form, submit button. For the exceptions, the text of the graphic needs to be an alt attribute for that graphic

  • Limit graphics as much as possible. When graphics are used, include descriptive alt attributes (words separated by hyphens). For example: <img src="new-bmw-picture.jpg" alt="All New BMW for 2008" />. Bonus: Use the alt attributes and image names as opportunities to increase keyword density

  • If the site has multiple pages, and you are building a direct-response site, then every page has the first-step call-to-action on it (EG: for new car quote sites, every page would have the make-model-trim selector). First step should be well above the fold; no part of the form, including submit button, falls below 640 pixels from the top of the page
  • . Above-the-fold rule applies to every field and button on every page in the flow

  • Create Custom 404 pages, like this:

  • If you move/rename a page that has been indexed by the search engines, make sure to do a 301/302 redirect from the old page to the new page

  • Download Xenu's Link Sleuth to make sure your site doesn't have broken links. Search engines hate sites with broken links!

  • Add XML sitemap to the robots.txt: sitemap:

  • Put <link rel="canonical" href="" /> into the head of the undesired version of a duplicate URL that you have canonicalization problems with. Google, MSN, Yahoo, etc. have agreed on this attribute as a way of recognizing which version of the duplicate page you wish to have indexed. Not doing so risks dilution in PageRank, in-bound link count, etc.

  • Also follow all rules from SEOmoz Cheat Sheet
Phil Yeh Dotcom Footer

Phil Yeh - Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization Member

Phil Yeh - Google Adwords Qualified Professional Phil Yeh - SEMPO Advanced SEO Certified

Phil Yeh - Active Mensa Member

Phil Yeh - IHIQS Lifetime Member

Active Member, Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization

Qualified Professional, Google Adwords Advanced SEO, SEMPO

Active Member, Mensa

Lifetime Member, IHIQS