Pausing for the Season

This Thursday at my BNI meeting we collected presents for Toys for Tots. We’ve done this for a number of years, and it was very pleasing this year to see that despite the economy members were as generous as ever! Super folks at the Marlborough BNI!

Here’s pics of us cutting it up before the gifts were taken out for delivery.

2011 Toys for Tots

Katherine Wright, Mike Curtin and Me posin'

2011 Toys for Tots Drive

Dennis Maroney, Beth Bryant, Suzanne Spero and me showing off the gifts.

Photos by Emily Greenwood, EKG Networking, Marlborough, MA.

Test your SEO Knowledge Answers

Last week, I posted questions for you to be able to test your SEO knowledge. Today, I post the answers.

It is impossible to do SEO without updating the pages at my website
TRUE
– SEO is an intrusive process. Yes, some of the tasks like increasing your inbound links lie outside of the website, but equally-important tasks are re-working the words on your web pages and adding appropriate meta data to each web page.

It is good to have my web pages submitted to the search engines on a frequent basis.
FALSE
  – This is strategy from a decade ago. Nowadays, you only want to submit the web pages that you have tweaked in order to improve their standing in the search engine results pages.

The geographical location of the server my website is on affects  the ranking of my website in the search engines
TRUE
– Your hosting firm does not have to be in the next town, but, hosting your website in-country is most important. Remember that search engines are now producing “local” results. If your website is hosted with your friend in another-country, it is likely that your website will be listed as an option for your industry in that country and not the country in which you operate.

The directory structure of my website affects the ranking of my website in the search engines
TRUE
– For best results use descriptive names for all directories and files, and limit the number of levels of directories.

I can help my SEO by setting up my blog at another website so that I can drive traffic to my website
FALSE
– According to the experts from large search engine companies like Google that I have heard speak (and attended seminars and workshops, etc.), statistics show that although you can drive traffic to your website, you get a bigger bang for your efforts by blogging at your own website – and – you avoid putting yourself into competition against yourself.

I can significantly impact my SEO by using certain techniques each time I write in my blog
TRUE
– The average WordPress blogger critically underestimates the value of their efforts using keyword phrases in their post and pages and manipulating the titles, descriptions, and keywords to the meta data of a post or page.

Flash adds no value to my SEO
TRUE –
Flash cannot be read by the search engines and therefore, adds no value for SEO.

Choose the one best answer

When I guest blog or publish an article at someone else’s website, my SEO will be better if they provide a link to:

A.    My Home page
B.    My About Us page
C.    A topic-related page in my website

C is the best answer – Have other websites link as “deep” in your website as is practical. Next best answer is B, then A. You need to special request this because organizations are busy and don’t want to think and will automatically link to your Home page, which is not in your best interest.

When blogging, I’ll get the best SEO results by assigning………to a blog post.

A.    One category
B.    2 – 3 categories
C.    As many categories as are relevant

A is the best answer in order to gain the best SEO results. Search engines do not like duplicate data. When you create a post inside ONE category – there are really 3 versions of the post: the post, the post inside the category, and the post inside the (automatic) date archiving.  For each additional category you assign, another post is created (really believed to exist by the search engines). Too many copies of the same post and the search engines begin to think that you are trying to scam them… and then they start a whole new level of evaluation… You don’t want to go there 🙂

What has been your experience? What SEO tip would you add?

Business Infrastucture Week

We’ve got that week coming up – the one between Christmas and New Year’s. Usually a slow week with regard to customer interaction, so, I plan business infrastructure projects for that week; upgrade software, research & test software; transfer one of  my websites, etc.

This year, I have that week planned six-ways-to-Sunday – and – it is going to be a challenge to prioritize tasks and determine which can be left for another day. My list of To Do’s includes:

  • Transfer my website
  • Upgrade the WordPress® core software and all the plugins on my blogs
  • Research MailWasher and MailWasher Pro
  • Finish my eBook – SEO for WordPress Power Bloggers
  • Learn about Kindle Direct® publishing and determine if it is a fit
  • Certification Course
    • Write the specs
    • Write the syllabus
    • Define the registration process
    • Finish the plan
  • Upgrade security software on production and development systems
  • Catch up/meet for lunch with business colleagues
  • Review my websites for outdated info and archive outdated info (copyright dates, event listings, statements like “for 12 years…” and “a decade ago…”)
  • Add the WordPress Editorial Calendar to “Karen’s Blog” and start planning out the content as I have been advocating

What’s on your list?

Test Your SEO Knowledge

Today I gave a presentation in my BNI group.  Last week I had been given a list of questions prepared by the group so that I would know what the members wanted to talk about. There were several questions about SEO.

I answered the questions by giving the group a mock quiz.

Test yourself and I’ll post the answers next week.

True or False

T     F      – It is impossible to do SEO without updating the pages at my website

T     F     – It is good to have my web pages submitted to the search engines on a frequent basis

T     F     – The geographical location of the server my website is on affects  the ranking of my website in the search engines

T     F      – The directory structure of my website affects the ranking of my website in the search engines

T     F     –  I can help my SEO by setting up my blog at another website so that I can drive traffic to my website

T     F     –  I can significantly impact my SEO by using certain techniques each time I write in my blog

T     F     – Flash adds no value to my SEO

Choose the one best answer

When I guest blog or publish an article at someone else’s website, my SEO will be better if they provide a link to:

A.    My Home page
B.    My About Us page
C.    A topic-related page in my website

When blogging, I’ll get the best SEO results by assigning………to a blog post.

A.    One category
B.    2 – 3 categories
C.    As many categories as are relevant

Paradigm Strategies Debuts Fresh, New Look

Congrats to Kevin Lister of Paradigm Strategies on the new look-n-feel of his website. Adventures Online worked on the website October through early December. The new website is based on WordPress blog software and includes a number of plugins and widgets.  Now that the website is in WordPress, Kevin will be able to update the content whenever he wants as long as he has an Internet connection. 

Paradigm Strategies New Website

New look-n-feel for Paradigm Strategies

Wishing Kevin a bushel or two of fresh, new prospects!

See Paradigm Strategies.