SEO: forth steps

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OK, the report is essentially quite simple. For my blog and what it is concerned with (self publishing and marketing an ebook), the report gives a long list of search terms, starting with ones you should target (because there’s not much competition) to those it’s a complete waste of time targeting (because the competition is too strong). If you’re so inclined, look at: Why is it hard to be noticed by Google?

The first one on the list is: ‘best price kindle’ and the last (number 327) is: ‘social media marketing’

In other words if I cunningly and skillfully target this blog at Googlers who have typed in ‘best price kindle’ I might – just might – have a chance of appearing high enough in Google to be noticed.

But of course if I did and was clicked on, having ‘Abigail Saltminder’ turn up instead of ‘Sale!! Kindles at low prices!‘ would be a big turn-off.

And as for ‘social media marketing’ well, unless you’re a giant corporation with an unlimited budget, forget it.

So what am I left with? I have to find search terms relevant to both Abigail and SEO, and then learn how best to utilise them. I suspect it’s a bit more subtle than simply splattering the terms around, because Google isn’t daft. I’m sure its algorithms would screen out too many duplicate terms.

OK. Let’s start with selecting a couple of search terms and then read up about what we do with them.

(20 minutes later)

OK, so I’ve selected one: ‘writing an ebook‘ and – because none of the others seemed relevant – I’ve made one up ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’  which I’ve just typed into Google. It only generated ‘about 7,830,000’ hits. Well, it’s a start and – interestingly – the top one in the pile didn’t have that exact phrase. So for comparison I’ve done the same exercise with ‘writing an ebook‘ which generated ‘about 63,700,000’ hits. But again, the phrase was not present in the one at the top of the pile.

So, what’s going on? What has my small exercise in reverse engineering revealed?

Very little, if the truth be known. Or – as my Dad would say more succinctly – bugger all.

But stop press! In the ‘WordPress SEO by Yoast’ panel I’ve just noticed a ‘page analysis’ tab. It shows an SEO assessment for the post. Have a look Here (I’m opening this in another tab, so’s you can flip backwards and forwards without reloading the pages each time.) Now this is very informative, and tells me many things, which I’ll have a go with in a little while, because I’ve had another idea ….

… stop press again!

It’s a little crude, and generally I’m against testing things out on live systems, but I don’t have a test version of Google to play with. So how about this. Supposing I try and target the search phrase ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’ in the title page of this blog? Then I can go into Google and type it in, and we’ll see if the blog appears anywhere.

Well, why not? I want people to read what I’ve written, and ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’  isn’t completely insane as a search term if you want to market a self published kids ebook.

So I’m going to flip over to the home page and see what I can do. Be back soonish…

(about an hour later)

I’ve done the following things:

  1. Changed the website alternate name to ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’
  2. Changed the page name to ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’
  3. Rewritten the text on the page to use the words/phrases ‘marketing’ and ‘kids ebook’ and ‘self publishing’ near the start.

Now I believe changes like this take a while to filter through to Google. So I’m going to watch a bit of TV and go to bed. Resume tomorrow.

(next day)

Tried Googling  ‘marketing a self published kids ebook’ but no Abigail on the first few pages. Pity, but to be positive, I’ve discovered loads of interesting sites! I’ll leave it another day or so before I call this experiment a bust, but I have the feeling it’s kaput.

(two days later)

Well, blow me down with a feather duster, as my Dad never said. This blog is actually now on page 2 of Google if you type in ‘marketing a self published kids ebook‘. Seeing it there, towards the bottom of the page, squashed between The creative pen and An interview with A J Cosmo is actually extraordinarily scary. Somehow this whole project has become real because it’s been validated by a God-like Google. Hello world, Toby Zara exists!

Or maybe – and even more scarily – the outside world is shouting:


I’ve got this mental image of a small. diminutive figure standing alone on a vast flat plain and – looming over him – an enormous composite face looking down. Only needs a melting watch draped over a stunted tree and it’s Salvador Dali.

A bit like when John Ironmonger started following me on Twitter, (click here) I haven’t much of a clue what to do next.

Deep breath, let’s get real. It’s only on the second page of Google, and only if a googler types in the exact phase (‘marketing a self published kids ebook‘). If they enter ‘marketing kids ebook‘ it immediately drops down to page 5. Y’know what? I could get a bit obsessive about this.

Time for a think, ’cause I’d almost given up on this whole SEO stuff to concentrate on getting the book out there.

So it’s a three pipe problem Watson! I’d take the dog for a walk, but I’m meant to be on vacation, so the dog’s with friends. Back later.

Back to SEO and this blog

2 thoughts on “SEO: forth steps

  1. well Toby, blow ME down with a feather duster – when I googled ‘SEO “website alternate name”‘, I found ONLY your page. I’ve been trying to figure out what that Yoast ‘website alternate name’ actually does in SEO terms. Trouble is that you changed 3 variables at the same time so we still don’t know whether your Page 2 google search success was the changed alternate name, page name, or text changes……

    • Hi Catherine. I feel honoured. Only one in Google, apart from those that pay to be there! How many other people can say that? It seems strangely irrelevant your search was only tangentially looking for my site, it’s given me a real buzz! Sorry it wasn’t more help. I was just fiddling about, trying one thing and then another. Maybe I shall have another go, I’d rather given up. Good luck. Cheers, Toby

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