“Stacking” refers to the number of relevant results for a specific brand or website that appear when a search term is entered. If a person is searching for “cheap leather furniture” and ten different links to the same furniture store appear, the webmaster has successfully stacked the listings. If the search term turns up ten links that are not related to a particular brand or website, the keyword has not been effectively stacked. If a website or brand can successfully stack a particular term, it is more likely to reinforce itself as the main provider of a particular good or service.
Stacking is not purely an accident. The savvy use and integration of keywords plays a major role in elevating a particular site’s organic rankings. However, stacking must also play a role in choosing categories for bread crumbs.
• Reflecting Stacking in the Bread Crumb
When a person searches for a website such as Automotive.com, that website appears in the search rankings with a series of specific “bread crumbs” listed underneath the main URL. These bread crumbs are links to different pages of the website that are usually categorized by a particular interest or topic. Automotive.com has bread crumbs for the “Latest News,” “New Cars,” “Cars for Sale” and other topics. Each of these links has been carefully categorized by the webmaster in order to attract and direct website traffic. What is the best way for a webmaster to determine categories for his website? How should these links be stacked, and how should this affect the site’s article content?
In terms of bread crumbs, it’s vital for a webmaster to choose those pages that he feels will generate a substantial number of visits and visitor interaction, or conversion. Although the URL Automotive.com technically only shows up in the first search position, the six stacked bread crumbs help it claim more virtual real estate. The order in which the bread crumbs appear also will help or hurt Automotive.com’s future success with conversion rates and organic rankings. In this case, the website has chosen “Used Cars” and “Latest News” as its primary bread crumbs, followed by “Check Gas Prices” and “Explore Forums.” The webmaster has clearly attempted to determine categories for his bread crumbs based on the most popular sections of his website.
The popularity of any given page or section is often related to the article content on that page. The “Latest News” bread crumb is a link to continually refreshed content that covers the spectrum of automotive related news. In each case, the content on this page features brand names of desirable vehicles along with updates on the progress of various brands and manufacturers. It is an accurate reflection of both the overall purpose of the website and the specific bread crumb category. The webmaster has noted that a large number of people are searching for both news and deals on used cars. He therefore stacks his bread crumbs in an attempt to serve the interests of those who are searching for those topics.
However, the category name for each bread crumb is remarkably abbreviated. How does a webmaster choose the right wording for the anchor text in order to attract the most visitors?
• How to Stack Keyword Rankings
The wording of each bread crumb should be based on the popularity and ranking of keywords. Google Webmaster Tools allows a webmaster to view the popularity of each keyword he uses on his website. To return to an earlier example, imagine that a webmaster must choose between the keywords “cheap furniture,” “leather furniture,” and “cheap leather furniture.” He first consults the keyword rankings that the Webmaster Tools provide. He discovers that “cheap furniture” is a more popular search term than “leather furniture” but that “cheap leather furniture” has a higher overall conversion rate.
Every webmaster wants to increase his conversion rate. If a keyword generates 3,000 page views that results in a 5 percent conversion rate, this is not worth as much as a keyword that generates 300 page views with a 90 percent conversion rate. The webmaster should weigh his options and choose the keyword with the highest conversion rate.
However, he should not entirely abandon the other keywords, especially if they are used in combination with higher conversion keywords. The webmaster may choose to label one of his bread crumbs as “Cheap Leather Furniture.” He may then choose to incorporate “cheap furniture” and “leather furniture” into the article content on that particular page in order to amplify the effect of the highest conversion rate keyword.
• Quality Not Quantity
It’s important to stress that no matter what the ranking of any individual keyword, content creators should always focus on quality, not quantity. While fresh content initially helps a site bolster its organic rankings, poorly written material will eventually cause the site to lose its relevance. “Keyword stuffing” should be avoided at all costs.
Crafting original material that is both accurate and interesting will help the site gain prestige and respect. In some cases, a single well-written article on a specific topic will earn an almost permanent place among the top search results for that topic. This can help the website increase its stacking, especially if that article is linked to from a variety of other websites or sources. By creating content that is authoritative and thoroughly researched, a site can count on receiving a steady stream of relevant visitors.