Cardiff-based website design company SpinDogs has offered businesses advice on how to improve their search engine marketing strategies without resorting to less than ethical "black hat" techniques.

A spokesman for the firm, Liam Giles, explained that the key to successful search engine optimisation is to identify realistic goals. Firms should refine keywords ensuring that they are appropriately specific in order to increase the number of visitors to their sites.

He also noted that good internet marketing takes time, money and persistence. It is a good idea to invest money into web marketing strategies such as Google Adwords, paid links and adverts, he said.

Inbound links are a particularly good way to organically improve search engine optimisation results.

Mr Giles went on to say that it is important that firms ensure their content is interesting, relevant and unique, as well as search engine specific. Good content increases the chance of repeat visitors and makes it more likely other sites will link back to it.

The key, he explained, is to be patient. Organic ranks, particularly in Google, are not instant and results will depend on the competitiveness of the target market.

Earlier this month, Lee Odden, founder of TopRank Online Marketing, said that click conversion and channelling traffic have overtaken ranking as the principle measurables in the SEO and internet marketing sector.

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ClickThrough is a digital marketing agency, providing search engine optimisation, pay per click management, conversion optimisation, web development and content marketing services.