In the coming weeks, I’m going to be writing a series of blog posts here on PokerAffiliatePrograms designed to give you an overview of what’s involved in search engine optimization in today’s online poker affiliate market.

The biggest name in search engine optimization is undoubtedly Google. This is an interesting time in the world of online business, in which we’re seeing a growing backlash against Google and its dominance of the search engine market — not necessarily because people have a problem with Google’s service(s), which is/are generally regarded to be excellent, but because there’s a growing discomfort with how dominant Google has become, and that if you concentrate your online business solely on this one company, you’re putting all your eggs in one basket. And that’s generally never a good idea in any business.

Still, Google is the industry standard, and efforts by Microsoft and Yahoo to compete have come up short. Microsoft’s Bing is doing okay, but it’s barely tapped into Google’s enormous marketing share. So as a new online affiliate marketer, you’ll want to start by engineering according to Google’s standards, but, as the Search Engine Journal states, you’ll also want to keep your eye on the bigger picture, knowing to occasionally look beyond Google’s pastures.

Luckily, the basics of starting your SEO strategy are going to be fairly universal, no matter what search engine is most dominant. The most important elements are choosing a domain name that includes your most searched-for terms, and also placing those terms heavily in your content. (But also doing so in a smooth, readable manner, which is something a lot of sites fail at and suffer therefore for housing content that doesn’t appear entirely professional or trustworthy.) Linkbacks are also crucial; I’ll get to that in a future entry.

So the very first step is the domain name. And that’s the toughest part of getting started as a poker affiliate. As you definitely know, “poker” is one of the most difficult words to optimize for, because it’s so damn ubiquitous. It’s everywhere. Go to any domain registrar and search for a domain name including the word “poker” and, chances are, unless it’s something completely obscure, it’s already taken.

So your first assignment: Find a domain name that contains the word “poker”, and hopefully at least one other highly searched-for term that isn’t already taken. The more ambitious (or well funded) among you may choose to buy an existing domain. But for those not willing to take that option, the best solution is to conduct research into the hottest Internet poker affiliate keywords and phrases, and figuring out how to build a memorable, short-but-sweet domain name that has those terms.

Basic knowledge, but essential for beginners. I’ll expand into the intermediate and advanced stages in future entries. Stay tuned, and good luck!


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