Author Archives: Ash

Selecting Your SEO Keywords

At the start of any SEO campaign selecting the right keywords is the most important step. If you choose the wrong keywords, you simply won’t succeed with your campaign.

When selecting campaign keywords you need to consider: What, where, how and why.

  • What is my main sales proposition?
  • Where am I located in Google and the country?
  • How good is my current website and how much history do I have?
  • Why am I considering optimising for that keyword?

.Ideally you would start with a targeted keyword that is exactly what you do, what you offer and where you are located, for example if you were a “luxury hotel in Devon” that also offered spa treatments you might consider “luxury hotel in Devon with spa”.

Your first step would be to establish what the potential traffic of this keyword is. To complete this action go to the Google keyword suggestion tool.

If the above keyword had limited to no search volume, then is it worth optimising? Arguably yes, you want to show for exactly what you are, treat it almost as your brand keyword, that with good content and a well structured website you should appear in the SERP (Search Engine Results Pages) with minimum effort. Yes, it will have a low click level, but your conversion should be a lot higher the average.

In using the tool, “country house hotel in Devon” was a search suggestion with a search volume of 250 per month and when placed on exact match it had 140 ASV (Average Search Volume). This keyword should be another to consider, but it’s not going to Wow. Therefore, you need to look at more generic keywords.

Consider looking at generic searches, for example, “Devon Hotel”, “Devon Hotels”, “Country House Hotel”, “North Devon Hotel”, complete a Google search and find if you already have a ranking in the top 100. This is a simple task by simply changing your settings to 100 and using the control F function.

If you find your website ranks for “Hotel in Devon” in 63rd position with no optimsation this keyword would be a good starting point for any SEO campaign. The hardest challenge is always to get a website to rank within the top 100 places, if you are already there, you have an advantage.

Finally, review the competition ahead of you, identify your main competitors and set SMART objectives.

The Competitive Link Finder

SEOmoz Linkscape tool is part of the armory of most SEO companies. Linkscape allows you to put definable metrics on incoming links, DmR, mR, DmT. The team at SEOmoz has now developed a new tool on the back of linkscape called The Competitive Link Finder.

It works by comparing you to your competition. You simply enter your URL and compare it against your competitors. The Competitive Link Finder then reviews all the incoming links to you and your competitors website and produces a targetable lists of linking websites. This list is normally 1 – 25 and ranked on SEOmoz factors (DmR, mR, DmT,)

It works by identifying websites where you are not found, analyzing link metrics and then producing a list of target links, it is that simple.

The tool ignores nofollow links, so you’re only seeing pages that have actual, live links to at least two of your competitors.

Exact Factor

I came across this new SEO tool called Exact Factor.

Its promises to check positions on the major search engines, and alert you when you have reached the top 10 positions, including

  • Your position is up/down
  • Your competitor has passed you
  • You reached the first page in Google

The website is easy to use and navigate with a simple structure, its not trying to make the service it offers complicated.

My problem, how is it checking listings, and with Google policy on 3rd party software, where does Exact Factor sit within the market place. My big question is will clients I sign up be penalised in the search results?

I do feel it is important for the team to check and monitor there competing keywords in Google. This strategy allows you to keep a close eye on the competition and notice small differences that could make a huge difference in position, and is Exact Factor the answer to helping the team?

I am currently testing on a old website, and will let you know what the results are.

Tom

Common Mythological Mistakes of the SEO Universe!

Every specialised sector has its own set of myths. “Knowledge” that people within the SEO world take to be true is no different. Unfortunately we are more than likely to succumb to these myths as tactics that may have worked last year, month or week might not hold as much relevance today. Below we have a list of some of our Favourite SEO Myths:

1 – Submitting to the search engines is the only way to get your site listed.

2 – Meta tags are vital to SEO.

3 – Filling your alt text with keywords will ensure you decent ranking results.

4 – Search Engine Rankings are the only metric worth measuring.

5 – There’s a faultless keyword density that if you use on your site will result in excellent ranking results.

6 – Your home page has to contain every one of your keywords.

7 – You have to put keywords in your headline in order for your page to rank well.

8 – Not Using <H1> tags will prevent you from achieving top placement.

9 – More traffic always leads to sales.

10 – SEO executives are too expensive.

11 – SEO is all about secret tactics and tricks that only the “A list SEO’s” know about.

12 – The more links you have the better the ranking result.

13 – Google owes you a number 1 listing because you’ve followed their guidelines.

14 – Search Engine Optimization is a collection of tricks to fool search engines.

15 – SEO requires continual manipulation in order to keep up with changes in the search engines’ ranking algorithms.

16 – SEO is straightforward to learn.

17 – The only goal of SEO is to be number one in Google.

So Wong it’s Right!

We often hear about social bookmarking and its future importance to SEO but what exactly is it? There are many different sites who allow their users to save/organize and manage the bookmarks to their favourite sites. These are then made available publicly so that other users can check out peoples favourite or most popular bookmarks.

These bookmarks are generally saved as tags which can then be found when someone searches for that particular sector. I.E. Someone searching for “online seo blog” will come across other users favourite bookmarks to do with online seo blogs. Most social bookmarking sites also provide a feed that will show a user when a friend of theirs has added a new bookmark so that they can then check it out. Traffic wise for a site you can obviously see the benefits of new people being given access to your site every day but is there really much benefit SEO wise?

There is now, thanks to Mister Wong. Already known as an authority site in the social bookmarking world, Mister Wong has approximately 4 million visitors every month looking to use their excellent bookmarking service. As well as being able to access your bookmarks wherever you are in the world there are benefits to help you sites rankings. Mister Wong is a PR 8 site and offers do follow links this will obviously be beneficial when it comes to link building. But beware, use sparingly otherwise you might get banned!

For more info on Social Bookmarking check out this video.

Slowly, Slowly, Catchy, Monkey.

The expectation from clients of seeing top ten results in Google and Yahoo within a short space of time can be demoralizing for most SEO executives. I mean you’ve only got to make vast onsite changes as well as start link building and viral marketing campaigns…

The problem is how do you explain to a client that SEO rarely works quickly? Results aren’t visible within hours and recent links may take a while to activate. Everyone of us working in SEO understand that clients want to see positive changes as soon as possible but next time you are getting it in the neck for not “producing the expected results” remember and pass on these details to keep their business.

Search engines take time to re-crawl sites – Authority sites that are used by millions daily won’t be troubled as much but can still take days or weeks to be crawled. Sites that are slightly lower in Google’s “have to crawl” list can take up to 4 months before all of the sites pages have been fully indexed.

Linked sites need to be crawled too! – Sites that you are linking with will need to be crawled by Google too. Unless you are linking with authority sites (in which well done!) you will have to be patient to experience the fruits of you labour.

Search engines reward patience – Google and Yahoo quickly learnt that black hat link building is often made for the short term whilst good, quality links last. This will see a links power/worth increase over time thus making your site a trustworthy one. New sites and domains suffer with trust issues especially with Google but over time you will see your links having a positive effect on your rankings.

Patience is one of the most important qualities when it comes to SEO, particularly whilst we are going through tough economic times. It is advised that you give a good 3-4 months work on a client’s site before expecting the positive results to roll in.

Social Bookmarking

I came across this social bookmarking service from a webmaster forum and the social bookmarking service is called post toaster & is currently in beta stage.

Looks impressive and has been built with SEO in mind. Post Toaster is a time saving social bookmarking service which includes an option to select sites that do not support the nofollow attribute.

How to use:
Click on the lion logo above and drag and drop into your toolbar. This is your Post Toaster bookmarklet for easy posting. When entering titles and descriptions you can enter up to four of each. Post Toaster will randomly pair them for you within each submission. You must check the checkbox to the right of the title and description fields to activate your data.

SEO

SEO

For the full link please see www.posttoaster.com

Find Google/Yahoo’s favourite pages.

Here’s an oldie but a goodie, ever wondered how to check what pages on your site carry the most link juice for the main search engines? Well wonder no more, below is an example of how you can find your strongest pages on Google and Yahoo.

In Google and/or Yahoo simply type in site:addyourwebsitehere.com inurl:www and it will give you results as follows for our online seo blogGoogle Results, Yahoo Results

Both results will probably vary due to their respective algorithms but it should give you an idea on which pages have more juice so that you can redirect it to pages that need it.

Google and Back Links

Good Morning

There is a common belief that when you check Google backlinks using info:domain Google is showing all the links that influence its rankings. Unfortunately not the Google backlink checker is not a SEO Tool and it does not display all links that weight its algothrithm.

Please see below:
1: The Google backlink check is not an SEO tool.

2: The backlink search does not represent the sum total of all links that Google knows about your site.

3: The backlinks shown do not represent links that are counting as part of your backlinks.

4: Just because it shows up in the backlink search does not mean Google is using it for your ranking.

5: Just because a backlink is missing does not mean Google is unaware of it

6: Just because a backlink is missing does not mean Google is not counting it for ranking purposes.

Is LSI the Future of Search?

LSI is Latent Semantic Indexing.

This system is already being used in some forms by Google and is something that will become ever more important in its algorithm once the technology is advanced enough to use it. Sites that use LSI (and are coincidentally dominating search results…) include ESPN.com and Wikipedia.

The Latent Semantic Indexing system will hopefully take SEO to a different level by using a database system that will select certain keywords to link with one another. For example a keyword like “SEO” will be commonly found with words like search engine, ranking, website, services, internet marketing etc.

E.g. SEO –> Search Engine

This LSI technology will then measure page strength by the amount of related words that are in the content or on the page for your selected keyword. E.g. a site may rank higher in the SERP’s if its pages contain the correct related keyword(s). This means that each of your keywords will have their own “magic words” that you should add to optimise your site properly.
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