Evaluating the competition

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Paul Allen said that when deciding if you can beat another site out in the search engines, you need to look at 3 things on their site:

1. their url
2. their title
3. their h1 tag

I’m not totally sure that the third one was his third, but there needs to be one more added to the list (which I’m sure he would add too):

4. number of their incoming links

What this all means is do they have the keywords they’re targeting in the name of the site. If they do, obviously the site must be about that and search engines know it. If they have the keywords they’re targeting in their title and the h1 tags thats very important too.

So, to evaluate the competition, you need to visit all of their websites and see how well they’re doing with having the keywords you’re targeting in those places.

You also need to see how many incoming links each site has and evaluate if you can beat them or not. The number of incoming links a site has can be found by doing a search on google for “link:www.sitename.com”. This will display to you all the pages that link to www.sitename.com that have a pagerank of 4 or higher. For example, a search for link:www.familylearn.com currently has 57 links to it. That’s subject to change at any minute, but it’l give you a pretty good idea of how much work you have to do to start showing up higher than your competition.

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