Archive for the ‘SEO’ Category

Can Higher Education in SEO Help You be a Perfect SEO Strategist?

SEO as a learning stream in colleges has yet to be fully developed. That is the reason why you will not find colleges offering full-time programs on this subject. The few colleges that do teach SEO offer only a brief course and that is usually in addition to a major in IT or computer sciences.

 

The Need for SEO Education

As a business owner, you, no doubt, are deeply concerned with promoting your website. Promoting often means being found on the first page of search engine results, though that is not an end in itself. Search engines have their own set of shortcomings and, whether you like it not, you will have to be content with what they are. There are many intricacies to SEO and they keep changing. Even a few months off from SEO can leave you out of touch with the online world. (more…)

Learn to Write Blog Headlines Search Engines Love: Five Tips

It’s like having bad breath.  If your blog’s headline turns people off, they are not going to stick around to find out what you are really about.

You want people to be captivated, engaged and interested in the title of your article so they actually read it.

But you also want it to say to the search engines, “Look at me!  Look at me!”  And in order to do that, your headline must be optimized correctly for those search engines (hence, search engine optimization).

Five Tips for Optimizing your Blog Headlines for SEO

1.  Take the time.

According to Copyblogger’s 50/50 rule, half of your time spent writing content should be spent on developing the headline. Half of your time. Know the importance of your headline: only 20 percent of online users read anything more than headlines.  So before you get started on your blog, plan on devoting a decent amount of time to crafting the headline. (more…)

How to End Your Fight with Google

Here’s the problem – Google left the door wide open and people took advantage. This led to great rankings, traffic and, more importantly, money in the bank. People started to rely on the majority, if not all traffic coming from Google and then the rug was pulled from under their feet. This kicked off an almighty struggle with the King of Search, but I’m here to tell you today that it doesn’t have to be a fight. There is another way.

Stop Building Dirty Links

If you’re going to get back into Google’s good books, you need to cease using dodgy link building tactics full stop.

This isn’t one of those situations where you can be half in, half out – you need to move away from dodgy links completely.

Stop Now! (more…)

Is Google Killing the Keyword?

Organic SEO has hinged on the quality of keywords and related searches since inception. It’s a simple formula: determine how users are searching for your content or services, adjust your keyword strategy, and reap the benefits. But for over two years now, those efforts have become increasingly more challenging to accurately execute.

Why? Because the more business owners are able to determine their own best keyword strategies, the less they need to fork over cash to Google’s paid keyword advertising. That’s a gross generalization, but it seems to be at the heart of a movement Google launched in October of 2011. To understand what’s causing the demise of the keyword – and how to fight back – we have to face some cold hard facts.

Keyword Data is Almost All Encrypted (more…)

How A Successful Social Media Competition Can Boost Your SEO Rating

Engaging followers on social media can significantly improve your search engine rankings. Since Google changed its Penguin and Panda algorithms earlier this year, it has become clear that the search engine is putting more emphasis on social media metrics. The more shares and likes your online business receives, the more favourably Google will rank your website. Therefore, running a competition as part of your social media strategy will give your ratings a boost.

The key to running a successful social media marketing campaign is to engage your audience. Whatever competition you run must be appealing enough for people to get involved. It must appeal to their interests, desires or needs. Competitions should offer participants a prize or reward and be fun to play but, most importantly, it must be something your followers will share with their friends.

Search engines use “social signals,” to assess a website for quality content. They do this by counting the number of likes, shares and tweets etc. each page of a website receives. The idea behind this strategy is that if you are publishing content that people want to read, you will be given a higher rank. Google’s aim is to provide Internet users with a richer experience, therefore, your website has to meet the same ideals Google is looking to promote. (more…)

Is PageRank on Its Way Out? Focus on These Tools Instead

Since early 2013, Google’s PageRank tool seemed to be on a downward spiral. The data is no longer being funneled through the Google toolbar on a daily basis, and there haven’t been any PageRank updates recently. There are rumors that PageRank may not ever be updated again, and this means webmasters and marketers will no longer be able to view that data – the data that was an integral component to SEO and link building practices.

Because PageRank data has been missing for months now, I think many of us could agree that we value PageRank data less than we used to; although, it’s something we may still inadvertently check when making SEO decisions.

PageRank may still be important to the overarching SEO algorithm, but there are many other SEO tools that can help our efforts, even when PageRank is no longer providing us with data.

The Importance of PageRank (more…)

How the Google Zoo Has Forever Changed SEO Copywriting

As far back as I can remember (circa 1999), search engine copywriters have been told to use keywords as often as possible.  According to most, proper optimization of a page involved things like writing for keyword density ratios, including keyphrases in every file name, every page name and every tag… at least once.

The common way of thinking for a decade or longer was the more keywords you could work into a page, the better your rankings would be.  Early on in the life of Google, that was pretty much true.  But, since the release of all the animals in the Google zoo (Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird), SEO copywriting has made a 180-degree shift.

How Did We Get Here?

It’s no accident that website owners and copywriters were taught to incorporate keyphrases into their text frequently.  Search engines are text machines. They can’t see pictures or listen to podcasts.  In effect, search engines are deaf and blind.  The only thing that guides them is text, and that includes the words in file names, page names, image tags, meta tags and page copy. (more…)

Google or Facebook? The Future of Search

What on earth am I talking about? What is the relevance between a Social Media Giant and a Search Giant? Aren’t they just both enormous behemoths operating in a different digital universe? No, they are not. They are much closer competitors than most of us care to acknowledge. Certainly Google won’t acknowledge any similarities in the two platforms, that’s for sure. Although most people on the inside of the digital space have held the view I am about to share with you for some time now, it will be news to most.

Let me start by just highlighting one thing before you tune me out and put this rant into the realms of total gibberish! A short while ago Google shut down its 21st failed project! Why is this relevant? Well, just to highlight the fact that Google doesn’t get it right all the time. Like all businesses, and individuals for that matter (Richard Branson, is a great example), Google is not infallible, so please do not take the view that everything is and always will be Google search. At least not until you hear me out. (more…)

SEO Changes: Google Post-PRISM

SEO is in a constant state of flux. In fact, change is one of the only consistencies to search. Most often, the algorithm changes that affect search results have no true bearing on searchers. Or, at the very least, searchers do not notice the changes. The changes, however, are made for the searcher in an effort to serve up the most relevant results that engage searchers and keep them coming back to that specific engine.

The search engine wars were highlighted in a series of commercials beginning in 2009. Bing, a search engine created by Microsoft, entered the market by force with a mission to prove to searchers that they were more intuitive and “searcher-oriented” than Google or Yahoo. This proved to be one of the first times that searchers became interested in the way search works and the actual results that were appearing on their screens. It led to comparisons between the search engines, and the way they use SEO began to really come into play. A 2012 set of Bing commercials further brought search engines to the forefront with the “Bing it On” challenge. Their argument was that Google was a habit, but that Bing was actually a more useful search engine. It might have muddied the waters a bit, but Google still reigned supreme. (more…)

How to Track the Success or Failure of Your SEO

As you make changes to your organic SEO strategy via keywords or on-site updates, it can be challenging to know whether you efforts are actually generating positive results. Because organic SEO can take weeks and months to show tangible movement in your search engine rankings, it is essential to know how to accurately track successes and failures as early as possible. Educating yourself about the key metrics that point to the overall health of your SEO efforts can save tremendous time, money, and headaches.

Accurate measurement of any SEO campaign varies significantly based on the actual business focus and its key objectives. There are, however, a few key performance indicators (KPIs) that quickly reveal the effectiveness of any SEO strategy. Read on for detailed tips on how to become an expert at reading your SEO analytics.

The KPI Trifecta

Within hours or days of an SEO campaign launch, start paying attention to the following KPI’s: (more…)