How to Get More Traffic to Your Runescape Fansite Through SEO
What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
In the first article in my series on how to start a Runescape fansite, I taught you how to purchase a domain, buy web hosting, and ensure that your fansite is Jagex approvable. Now I'd like to help you get more traffic to your website. We will be using a mix of search engine optimization (I will refer to this as SEO from now on) and classic web developing techniques. While this article is targeted towards helping Runescape fansites, most of its techniques can be adapted to improving the traffic of any website.
Boosting Your Runescape Fansite's Search Engine Rankings
The first thing you'll want to focus on is boosting your fansite's search engine rankings. Most new members that stay will come from search engines and not other Runescape fansites. To get these visitors you'll have to rank high in the search engines and the only way to accomplish that is through SEO.
The basics of search engine optimization are pretty simple, though it takes years to master. Some Runescape fansites are better at it then others, but a lot seem to know little about SEO. This gives you an advantage. Here's what you need to do to ensure that your fansite gets favorable rankings in Google and other search engines.
- Get Anchored Inbound Links
- Optimize Your Site On The Inside
- Form Relationships With Other Young Fansites
Getting Anchored Inbound Links
Anchored inbound links (or backlinks) are the cornerstone of any SEO campaign and are key to getting your fansite to the top of Google. An anchored backlink consists of reveant keywords that link to your site. Here is an example:
The keywords you are wanting to rank for are "Runescape Quest Guides." To create an anchored inbound link you must turn this whole phrase into a hyperlink back to your fansite. If your fansite were Sal's Realm of Runescape, your result would be Runescape Quest Guides.
There are several ways to get anchored backlinks: add your site to directories, write articles, and get other fansites to link back to you. When collecting backlinks it's important to check the Google PageRank of the referring site. The higher the PageRank, the more influence the link will have. Here is a good reference site to check Page Rank.
Getting Backlinks Through Directories:
Free directories have lost some of their value to Google through the years, but they still can help. There are also paid directories, but I don't recommend shelling out a few hundred bucks a year just for a single inbound link. Also submit to some Runescape specific directories (usually Runescape topsites). These will send some targeted Runescape player traffic your way.
Runescape Top Sites:
Writing Articles to Boost SEO
One of the most often overlooked ethods to increasing web traffic to your Runescape fansite is article submission. You may think, "Why create content for another site when I could be helping my own?" but you really get "paid" quite well in backlinks. Article sites frequently have PageRanks over 5 and allow multiple submissions. Some quality article submission sites are:
Hubpages is the site you're currently at. At HubPages you can write hubs related to your site's content and link back to your main site. It's a great way to increases search engine rankings and transfer traffic to your fansite. As an added bonus, HubPages gives you %60 of the AdSense impressions, so you can also make some bank to help fund your site. Sign up for HubPages.
Ezine articles is similar to HubPages, but has stricter quality reviews. Each of your articles will need to be hand reviewed, a process which can take up to a week.
Optimize Your Runescape Fansite for SEO
On Your Runescape Fansite you'll want to create content that is optimized for SEO. Basically this means, for every article you write you will want to target a specific keyword. For example, for a Runescape mining guide you will want to feature the phrase "Runescape mining guide" predominantly throughout the article. Use header tags and put it there, and above all put the phrase in the page's title.
An example to follow would be my Runescape Powermining Guide. With very little effort, I was able to rank this guide in the top 10 search results just with proper keyword placement. If you do the same with your Runescape pages, you're sure to rank decently.
Build Relationships With Other Runescape Fansites
A surefire way to build traffic to your site is to form relationships with other Runescape fansite owners. However, don't go after the big dogs. Sites like RuneHQ, Tip.It, Sal's Realm, and Zybez have no need to affiliate with your site and you'll most likely be declined.
Instead, go after smaller fansites. Take a look through that Runescape Directory I posted earlier, and look for some decent, yet fairly unknown, fansites. With any luck you'll be able to link with one another (helping your Google rank) and share visitors.
Increasing Traffic to your Fansite
If you follow these suggestions, you'll surely improves your Google ranking and increase your traffic. Once you've established an SEO campaign, just continue to create good Runescape content and visitors will come! Even make a blog for your site and blog about your Runescape experiences! This will create cameraderie with your members and get some traffic as well.
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