Archive for the ‘SEO Getting Found on the Internet’ Category

How you Sabotage your SEO

Friday, May 15th, 2009
  1. Leaving older versions of your web pages on the server
    The search engines send programs to review your website. A program thinks that ‘aboutus.html’, ‘aboutus-old.html’, and ‘aboutus-save.html’ are 3 different files. This looks like duplicate content and can cause your website to descend in the search engine ranks. (Learn more about duplicate content and SEO.) Ask your web developer how they are archiving your pages. Confirm with them that the obsoleted (and previous versions of your) Web pages are on a local machine and not at your website nor at a development, staging, or test website
     
  2. Maintaining your own website after SEO work
    I am seeing this more and more during these difficult economic times and want to highlight how damaging this is to your SEO efforts. Let’s say that last year, you had SEO work done by a professional. This year, money is tight so you want an employee to maintain your website. Now you have a non-SEO-trained person updating your website.  Due to their inexperience, they will inadvertently unravel the complex connections your SEO professional put into place last year, and gains that were achieved after the SEO project will begin to disappear.One option is to send the employee to SEO training. With that you end up spending the money you intended to save.  Plus, SEO standards are constantly changing, so you will need to continue sending that employee to training – and now the employee is truly distracted from his/her core competency.

    Set yourself up for success! An SEO professional knows what the search engines are looking for. They work more efficiently, and, in the end, will cost you less.

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Determining the SEO Health of Your Website

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Last night, I attended a SEMNE (Search Engine Marketing New England) event in Peabody, MA. Jill Whalen, co-founder of SEMNE and CEO of High Rankings, presented “Determining the SEO Health of Your Website.” Although I have experience and successes doing organic search engine optimization for my clients, I was hoping to pick up a nugget or two, and, make new connections by networking with other professionals. I scored on both counts!

Jill outlined the  process that she uses when auditing a website for search engine worthiness; 5 or 6 major areas. Then, she discussed each of the areas in detail. That was followed by live audits of several websites managed by people in the audience.

Common SEO mistakes Jill sees are that companies: 

  1. Choose too broad keyword terms
  2. Create web pages that are simply not link-worthy
  3. Create menu structures that are unreadable by the search engines
  4. Hide content
  5. Write content that does not include the appropriate keyword terms for the given page
  6. Use poor quality analytics tools

One interesting tool that I will check into in more detail later is Google’s KeywordToolExternal. Jill has stopped using WordTracker and Keyword Discovery and now uses Google’s keyword tool exclusively. I have always used WordTracker, so, I look forward to learning more about Google’s tool. As a quick look-see, this morning I used KeywordToolExternal to review my website.  It was very revealing to see what Google is suggesting for keywords. The keyword terms that I most want to be found with today  – are not on the list.  Hummm got some work there.  

Another tool that Jill recommended is a Firefox plugin called KGen. I installed that this morning, took a quick look, and will play with it a while in order to determine how it can enhance my SEO efforts.

Also mentioned were: Google’s text cache, site operator, and Analytics, as well as http header checks(http://www.randycullom.com/headerchecker.php).

Recommendations made by Jill:

  1. Optimize a single page for three keyword phrases (not just one)
  2. Create Titles Tags of 10 – 12 words
  3. Use CSS-based pull-down menus (not JavaScript-based)
  4. Use 301 redirects (and not 302’s)

All in all an informative presentation. Thanks Jill.

What tools are you using? Have any tips for SEO? 

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Kudos to SEMNE

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

Last night I attended the SEMNE event held in Providence, RI. Nick Gerner of SEOmoz was the presenter of “Inside the Black Box: How Search Engines Rank Web Pages“.

Nick is a Search Engineer and co-developer of SEOmoz’s new Linkscape product. (He mentioned the other primary co-developer several times, and it is my bad that I didn’t record his name. Maybe Nick can remind me… And he did – see comments below – Ben Hendrickson and the whole SEOmoz development team!)

Nick was prepared, knew his material, and his enthusiasm was contagious. He shared relevant information, and was at ease answering, and indeed, was excited to answer questions ranging from right-on-target to related-through-several-layers of “what ifs”.

Nick talked about the delicate balance of providing valuable user experiences and attracting search engines at the same time. Topics included Text Classification, Page Rank, Rank Time Techniques, Semantic Links, Sentiment Indexing, Document Structure, Link Analysis and Link Spams, Linkscape and mozRank, and more…

I was impressed with his presentation skills and his knowledge. His slides were a great complement to his message, and made understanding the concepts easy… and thought-provoking.

My goal at any event is to walk away with a nugget or two. Goal accomplished – AND – I have 4 pages of notes to review and think about. …About what the search engines are looking for, how they categorize, the super (have you heard it before?) importance of inbound links, and the importance and relevancy of products like Linkscape.

So Kudos to SEMNE for inviting Nick and Kudos to Nick for a great presentation and re-energizing my thoughts around my approach to SEO. 

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Internet Directories Facilitate Getting Found on the Internet

Friday, February 22nd, 2008

So, your SEO expert told you to get your website listed in as many industry-related directories as you can, and you hesitate because it sounds like you will have to spend hours and hours searching.

Not any more! Take a trip to Internet Search Engine Database (ISEdb). Look at the menus on the left: “Free Directories”, “Paid Directories”, “Local and Regional”, “Weblog Directories”, and so on. Yep, ISEdb has done the bulk of the leg work for you!

Action: Take time to understand your choices. Be choosy. Add your website to the directories that are most closely related to your work.

Tip: It is better to be listed in fewer content-related directories than in more “general” directories. Peanutbuttering doesn’t pay with this task.

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Google News – A No-Cost Way to Help Your Website Get Found

Monday, June 4th, 2007

Site Owners and Maintainers: Getting found on the Internet can be a very challenging and expensive task. You can help your website get found by reinforcing the work your SEO expert has done. Here’s a no-cost way to remind Google that your website is alive and well.

Take advantage of Google News – a service provided by the famous search engine.
Submit your press releases for display as “news” and subsequent indexing. Issue press releases containing current information about new products and events your site is involved with and Google News will likely pick it up.

How? Here’s a link to help you get started: Google News – Help for Publishers

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