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How Do You Improve Your RaSof Score (And Thus Your Search Engine Ranking)?

3 January, 2008 (11:05) | Search Engines, Tools | By: Nick Dalton

Yesterday you learned what the RaSof results meant. Today we’ll build on that knowledge and learn how to increase your RaSof score. If you have not already done so please download my product rApogee – my Christmas gift to you. It will be very useful in this exercise.

In yesterday’s example you noticed that the page had a ranking factor score of -10 for a keyword count of 12 for the page. That seems like a score that is low hanging fruit for improvement. If having the keywords exist 12 times on a page results in a negative score, then there are probably values that are positive. Look at google-page.txt for the various entries “Does having a keyword count of x for the page affect ranking?”. And find the one which has the high score as the first number on the “Data” line. This is what I found:

Q. Does having a keyword count of 18 for the page affect ranking?
A. No; It does not significantly affect ranking.
Data: +32 7 3 6 5 3 5 6 2

Just by adding the keywords to the page 6 more times for a total of 18 will increase the score for this ranking factor from -10 to +32. That’s a good improvement and probably pretty easy to do.

However, the best value for this particular ranking factor is:

Q. Does having a keyword count of more than 50 for the page affect ranking?
A. Yes; It increases ranking.
Data: +92 123 100 95 95 93 81 81 77

For the best search engine ranking benefit you should have your keywords appear more than 50 times on a page. Now this is more of a challenge. How do you work in your keywords more than 50 times into your text without it sounding like gibberish? If you can that’s great. If not, then just focus on some of the other ranking factors. Keep in mind that search engine ranking is not a goal in itself. What you want is customers who buy your products. If they find your web site through a top listing in a search engine, but they get turned off by the text on the web site because it suffers from keyword stuffing, then you haven’t gained anything.

Locating the right entry in the ranking factors data files and correlating it back to the RaSof results can be rather time consuming. That is one of the reasons I wrote rApogee. If you’re using rApogee all you have to do is look in column E to see the value of the ranking factor. Just scan the rows to find the one with the highest value. That’s your target.

rApogee ranking factor scores in column E

There are a couple of things to keep in mind while you’re doing this process:

  1. Adjusting your page for one ranking factor can have an impact on another factor. For example if you were to add your keywords to your page 50 times it’s very likely that the page would get longer. Total page length is another ranking factor.
  2. Make small changes at a time and note the new total RaSof score after each change.
  3. If you are optimizing a blog, keep in mind that the content of the blog home page changes each time you write another post. Therefore you should not pay too much attention to ranking factors like number of keywords on the page. Focus instead on elements of the page that do not change with each new post: the page title tag, and anything you have in your page header.

Here’s an extreme example of how a small change can make a large impact on your score due to the compounded effect of multiple ranking factors. Say you want to rank for the keywords “golf bags”. If you change your title tag on the page to be just “golf bags”, nothing else, then this is the RaSof score you would get for just that one item:

  • KeywordExists: +71
  • KeywordBeginning: +78
  • KeywordEnd: +42
  • KeywordCount of 1: +35
  • KeywordCount of 1-10: +71
  • KeywordDensity of 91-100%: +32
  • SectionLength of 1-9 characters: +67

For a grand total of +421 !

Where do you start?

My recommendation is that you tackle the page elements in this order:

  1. Title
  2. KeywordsMeta
  3. DescriptionMeta
  4. Head – Optimizing the first three items will often give you a good score for the Head section too.
  5. FirstAlt – If you have an image in your page header this is easy.
  6. Page and Body – Your page presumably already contains your keyword multiple times, so this should just be a matter of tweaking the number of keywords.

Another important tip

Until you’re comfortable working with rApogee and RaSof, do your changes and experiments on a test page. Make a copy of the page you’re trying to optimize and call it www.yoursite.com/test.html. RaSof can score any web page that is publicly available. When you’re happy with the RaSof score then copy the page back to its original location. You can even create multiple copies, e.g. test1.hml, test2.html, where you keep a copy of the highest scoring page and then try to beat it.

Side Note: This is like the method you use in Glyphius to refine your headlines to ever increasing scores. Note that James Brausch is currently running a 24-hour special on Glyphius and Glyphius 2007. The price is now $100 instead of the regular $300. After the 24-hour special Glyphius will no longer be for sale by James Brausch.

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