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For the keyword 'maui cottages' our site is ranked #2 but for our most important keyword 'maui vacation rentals' it's not even in the top 100.
Strange because the page is actually optimized for 'maui vacation rentals'.
Anyone have any clues about optimizing for Teoma?
Get incoming links from directories like ODP and industry directories. (eg in this case, travel directories). Get links from sites that complement rather than compete. eg: in this case other sites about new zealand, maui, culture etc.
Admittedly it is much harder for a commercial site that are say 100% advertising than an information site, 'cause other sites dont see the advantage of linking to these sites, *unless they are gettig paid for it!* But Teoma and Google are not in the commercial site promotion business yes? They are spinning for the searchers who are looking for info, rather than "buying opportunities". They leave the latter to Overture and Overture partners, and paid advertising..
Which can probably work even with commercial sites. I happened across a site by a marine biologist couple about sailing in Hawaii. Where I found it indicated that they were open to linking relationships. I don't know what the outcome was, but I stickied a member here with the URL who's got a yacht site in the BVI. It was geographically far removed, but a perfect match.
Even though not a keyword match if it's something related a link is of benefit to surfers, and certainly can't hurt. It establishes legitimacy if nothing else.