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Description: One of the biggest parts of ensuring your website is ranked - and ranked highly - concerns the use of text on your website.

You may or may not know this, but search engine spiders are very selective when they come and visit your website.

A lot of webmasters think that the best way to catch the eye of anyone who visits their site is to make sure they have stunning graphics and eye catching images.

Now while these elements do have their place they are certainly not the most important aspects of a website. After all, once the visitor has seen and looked at the graphic, if there is nothing much else for them to look at they will go elsewhere and find another website that is more helpful to them.

Furthermore, in order to get listed in the search engine results it's important to make sure your website is seen by the search engine spiders - and they cannot see images or graphics.

That is why text is and always will be the most important element of any website. If you want your site to rank highly then you need to look at how you are using and distributing information on your site, and ensure it doesn't give the wrong impression or mislead the visitor in any way.

One part of helping the spiders to rank your site highly according to its relevance in response to a search engine query is to include keywords in your content. More than one keyword should be used on each page, depending on what the overall content of that page is about.

For example, a website about jewelry will have that word on every page, but it will also include other terms which are unique to the specific page they are found on. If there is a page on costume jewelry then that term will be sprinkled throughout the content. A page displaying different types of gold jewelry may have terms such as gold earrings, gold necklaces, 9 carat gold, 18 carat gold and so on. Product descriptions should of course include these terms where relevant, but there is certainly no harm in having an introductory paragraph which includes these terms as part of a description of the variety of items the site has available for sale.

Of course keywords aren't the only element which goes into creating text which catches the attention of the search engines for all the right reasons. Another important element is to provide unique content which cannot be found anywhere else.

This has a two fold benefit. Firstly it will attract more in the way of visitors anyway, since they will come to know that they can read content on your website that they won't be able to get anywhere else. This alone is a big factor in encouraging repeat traffic, and the increase in footfall will ensure your site is ranked more highly when the search engines realize how popular it is.

Secondly if an article appears all over the web as well as on your website it won't be anywhere near as valuable as it would be if it only appeared on your website. The idea is that you want your whole site to be as individual as possible, so that it gains popularity and stands out among the competition. If you can manage this then you are halfway towards a good position in the search engines.

It stands to reason that unique content should also be useful and worthwhile. If you find yourself writing articles and the only thing you are concentrating on is the number of keywords you are trying to insert, then your focus is not on your readers. Remember that you want people to read your article and then bookmark your site to visit it again, and they won't do that if it becomes obvious to them that you are more interested in what the search engines think than your visitors.

Writing your own content will always be preferable to using content that has already been published elsewhere for the simple reason that you get to have total control over how it is written. You can also tweak it whenever necessary to accommodate more popular keywords. When all is said and done, no one will have a better knowledge of your website than you, which is why it's always advisable to write your own copy if you can.

So it's obvious that the spiders love web copy. They love to see plenty of words on your site because it means they have lots to look at - essentially you are presenting a good case for achieving a high ranking with their own particular search engine.

But how much text should you be providing? Is there such a thing as too much?

The answer to that is - not really. Your role as a webmaster is to inform and educate the visitors who come to your website (and hopefully to sell products and services to them as well) and if you have plenty of web pages packed with information on a variety of related topics within the overall subject of your site, you won't go far wrong.

What's more you are far more likely to rank more highly for more keywords if you make the effort to include more content in your site. Just imagine you have a three hundred word article on each page. Three hundred words isn't very long, and it doesn't give you much room to include many keywords on there without it looking like you are keyword spamming.

If on the other hand you write a series of articles that are two thousand words plus, not only will you find it much easier to include your basic keyword or phrase, you'll also be able to include several other related keywords and phrases quite easily without it looking crowded.

You can also use your web copy to promote other products and services you are interested in, as well as linking to other pages within your own site. Using clickable links is a good way of leading the search engine spiders from page to page within your site, and it means you can make sure that they will find other pages that they may not otherwise see.

One final point - if you can make your web content timeless then it will continue to perform well in the search engine results for a longer period of time. If you write an article on a current news event it may well bring you extra traffic for a time, but eventually it will drop off as the search engine spiders find it less relevant. It can still stay on your site if you wish, but unique and long lasting content will have better staying power over the longer term.

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