|Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Information|
Search Engine Updates vs. SEO
Webmasters always anxiously wait for a search engine update. Those who rank well want to see their sites get even better. Those who didn't do well expect a major boost. Those whose sites get de-indexed anticipate a major comeback. Those who just started new sites bet on their sites will make into the first page of search engine result pages (SERPs) for their targeting keywords. Of course, not everyone will be happy about the results of search engine updates. After all, search engine traffic is a zero-sum game - someone loses and someone gains. Then, the webmasters start preparing for next update.
The Business Reasons Behind The Major Updates
All major search engines claim that they strive to present search results to users with the highest quality. But the business of search engine is business. What they won't tell us is that there're many business reasons for every major search engine updates. Search engine traffic is hot commodity - it's free and has higher conversion rate since the searchers are very close to make their buying decisions. The downside of the search traffic for webmasters is that they don't have control at all. Your sites may be ranked #1 today, but nowhere next day.
Search engine companies will, no doubt, use the search engine traffic to maximize the values for their stakeholders. Google's Feb. 2 update (allegra update or Superbowl update) once again shocked the webmaster community like last Florida update. The noticeable change in Superbowl update is that well-established sites rank well even for specific keywords that aren't even highly relevant to their pages. You may think the move is to fight spams and improve the quality of SERPs. That's only part of the story. The results of the update is that the websites of well-established corporations (with never ending press releases) will get a major traffic boost from Google. Google does this by algorithm changes, not manual manipulations.
If we think search engine traffic from Google is really an incentive to try it free before you buy. This time, Google decides to lure the major corporations to test the benefits of search traffic. Major corporations will likely increase their spending in online advertising and those news agencies may even drop their law sues against Google if they see the traffic from Google justifies that their sites benefit from including in Google index database.
Is this the real driving force behind last update? Only Google knows. If you own Google, however, you will do the exactly the same.
Will this negatively impact the user experience? - maybe and maybe not. What is the real difference between the #1 spot and the site that ranks #100? - the backlinks. Backlinks don't alter the quality of a page at all.
When they say technology, they mean business. Major technology changes are always driven by business needs. It has nothing to do with "good" or "bad".
Strategies to Cope with search Engine Updates
The Internet and the Web was once hailed as the new medium and the new opportunity for small business and site owners. They will be disappointed as big three peek into fortune 500 companies's deep packets. There're strategies they can use to cope with the search engine updates, however.
1. Create a portfolio of website using different SEO techniques. If some of your sites get hammered in a update the rest may benefit from the update.
2. Generate traffic from all major search engines.
3. Use the search traffic to build loyal user bases.
4. Build sites similar to the sites of well-established companies. The tags, on-page, off page optimization techniques will become less and less important as major corporations aren't interested in those types of things that geek webmasters are interested.
Speculation on Coming Updates
The next Google update is around the corner. I won't expect any noticeable change. If Google decides to let big apples try search traffic free. They will need a couple of months to realize the values of the search traffic.
There will be major re-distribution of search traffic in 3 or 6 months. If the same group of major corporations always get huge amount of free traffic from Google. They won't bother to open their wallets. The major traffic distribution may be from one group of major corporations to another. The search traffic will unlikely sift back to small sites.
Copyright Bruce Zhang 2005
Bruce Zhang operates a website http://www.4th-media.com that automatically aggregates and categorizes SEO news, new articles, and forum threads from over 50 sources daily ( http://www.4th-media.com/newsbot/ ) to help webmasters and SEO professionals to keep up with the latest development in search engine marketing. The website also offers original thoughts on SEO.
Search Engine Optimization - Enhancing Web Site Visibility
I've had several prospects and clients say to me "I want my web site to come up on top in search engines." And some have been contacted by an SEO company asking for lots of money and claiming that they can guarantee top search engine results, which in many cases is just false promises. There is no quick and easy way to make a web site display in the top 10 on search engines. Getting a web site to come up high in search engines "naturally" can take time and effort. When I say naturally, I mean without paying to be a sponsored link. The content of the web site has to be relevant. By this, I mean the web site content should be very descriptive, and ideally unique, about your business, product or service. This way search engines can rank your site according to this detailed, descriptive and relevant content. Some reasons that a web site will rank high:
When to Hire a Professional SEO Firm?
In efforts to increase sales and profitability, more and more companies are turning to online marketing initiatives ? specifically, search engine optimization. Search Engine Optimization or (SEO) is the art and science of blending technical and marketing skills together into a finely tuned website that is both search engine-friendly, ranks well for specific keywords and phrases, and is tailored to your audience from a buyer and seller perspective.
Winning the Search Engine Wars!
Creating and building effective Search Engine marketing campaigns is like trying to nail jello to the wall! The challenge can be daunting to many, requiring very specialized knowledge of process that must be blended with unique and disparate technology. Here is some insight gained from years of experience providing these services to clients.
So, you've just paid £300 - £10,000 for a new web site to be designed 'registered your URL' and now it's sitting on the World Wide Web. All your new stationery and Business Cards give the Web Site address quite clearly. The designer assures you that it has been 'submitted' to all the 'Search Engines' and, when you type in the address, there it is.
Make Quality Content Your #1 Priority
It is by now a proven fact that content is the most important element for getting better pagerank and, consequently, more traffic.
?Google Friendly? Solutions to Graphic-Intense Sites
We all know that the search engines can't "see" or "read" the graphics on our pages. We also know that we need to provide text on a page, so the spiders will have something to crawl and index.
Forget SEO ? It?s All About Conversion!
Which SEO hat do you wear? Is it white or black? Or perhaps it's a subtle shade of gray. Well, wherever you are on this spectrum, if you are like 99% of the SEO-fixated webmasters out there, you are doing all you can to get visitors to your site. Where you used to optimize your keywords meta tags, you now worry about anchor text and XML site maps. So, you finesse your site, schmooze the algorithm du jour and begin to climb the slippery search engine rankings pole. But this is where you have to leave your SEO tricks behind and start thinking conversion. Whoa there! Conversion? That's all about making sales on shopping sites. My site's a forum! I don't sell anything. What has conversion got to do with me? Everything, my friend. Everything?. SERP Conversion You want visitors to come your site, right? That's why you climb greasy SERP pole, after all. (And why you lay awake at night wondering when the next Florida, Hilltop or Bourbon algorithm earthquake is going to hit.) But what does it matter if you reach the peak, but no one clicks through to your site anyway? The fact is that you have to convert prospective visitors even before they arrive. You have to pique their interest, tweak their curiosity and make sure they click your link and not the other guy's. And all you have to use are words. No technical tricks will help you now ? your only tools are plain ol' words. The SERPs will show words from two of three places. Two of these you can control and one you can't: 1.Your title tag. 2.Your meta description tag. 3.A directory description. (For example, Google is known to use DMOZ descriptions in their SERPs, and Yahoo uses their directory descriptions in theirs.) Now, there's not much you can do about how Yahoo or DMOZ editors describe your site, so don't worry about number 3. But do what you can do: Place your value propositions clearly in 1 and 2, and use them to lure searchers into your website. So you have to convert people before they even get to your site. But that's not all?. You want them to stay, right? Flash Conversion No, this has nothing to do with being blinded by bright lights on the road to Damascus. Nor am I telling you to go and make a 100% animated website. This "flash" is that split second, that tiny window of opportunity that opens up when a searcher arrives at your site and decides whether they have actually found what they are looking for? or not. Typically, you'll have a couple of seconds to persuade the new visitor to stay and hang out. That's all you get. It's the ultimate in speed-dating. So, how do you wow your "date"? Do you show him a page of scraped "content" interspersed with Adsense ads? Not if you want this to be a lasting relationship. Follow these tips and be sure to impress your "date": 1. Have a clear theme Ranking high for "blue widgets"? Then be sure your visible title, copy and images are clearly focused on them. 2. Have a clean design Imagine you are taking a first date to a movie. Do you pick her up wearing your pajamas in a dirty, trash-filled car? Or do you clean the car, wash your face and dress to impress? Of course you want to impress her, so you make sure you look (and smell) good. It's the same with your site: Clean design, a nice text size and pages that don't scroll from here to eternity are going to float your first-time visitor-date's boat. 3. Write clearly and focus on your "date" Waffle on about yourself and your date will get bored. She wants you to be interested in her. And in terms of your site, that means giving her what she wants to know as quickly and succinctly as possible. This comes down to your ability to write and communicate. So, if you are like Steve Martin in "Roxanne", make sure you get a someone else (a copywriter) to compose the lines to wow your "date" for you. OK, so let's say you have successfully wooed your first-time visitor date. He's here and he has decided to stick around. You're going steady, getting to know each other a little more. That's all you want, isn't it? No, it isn't! You want to pop the question, of course! Getting hitched You've made all this effort and spent money on getting your "date" this far, so you want to get the most out of your investment, right? You want to hear those sweet words, "I do": I do? want to click your Adsense ads. I do? want to become a forum member. I do? want to buy that cool digital thingy. So how do you turn a whirlwind romance into a successful proposal? Try these ideas for size: Have clear navigation You want to make your date dizzy with excitement, not frustration! Make sure you have clear, consistent, well-labeled navigation and make your visitor-date's time with you a pleasure, and not a reason to reach for the Advil. Have a clear proposition What do you want your visitor to do? Buy something? Sign up for something? Join something? Whatever the point of your site is, it does have a point, right? So don't beat about the bush, and don't hold back waiting for the right moment: Make your "proposal", and make it clear and direct. Happily Ever After? You thought that was the end of the story? Wait a minute, it's not over yet! I thought you were in this for a long-term relationship, not a one night stand? I know, you were thinking that having made all that effort while you were dating, you could ease off now that you're "married". But don't you know that the real rewards start here? So what are the secrets of a long, blissful relationship with your visitors? 1. Feed them! You convinced him to come visit once. But how often will he come back if all you give him are the same old leftovers? Cook him up something juicy and delicious, and have him salivating for more: Enliven your content with new, relevant pages and, not only will you set the search engine robots drooling, but you will also find you have a hoard of visitors coming back for seconds. And in this age of fast-(visitor)-food creation tools called blogs, there's really no excuse anymore. 2. Shower them with gifts Everyone likes a gift - and not just on birthdays, anniversaries and at Christmas: Money talks, and if you are selling anything through your site, then discounts and other offers to previous visitors and customers will draw them back like magnets. Throw in tempting freebies as well and you will have a potent marketing mix. 3. Send them "love" letters Anyone who has been in a long-distance relationship (like my wife and I were for a year and a half), knows that if you can't be together, the next best thing is a letter or email. For your website, this means an interesting ezine that is light on sales pitch and rich in information. 4. Start a family! Not literally! But you can create a "family" atmosphere by adding a forum where your visitors can interact with each other ? not just with you and your site. People are social animals, so use a forum to keep them coming back. OK, so perhaps I overstated it a little in my title. SEO is not dead, so don't forget about it quite yet. Just remember that it will only get you so far: If you want to actually achieve anything with your site, then you need to focus on conversion like a laser.
Possibly The Biggest Misconception About Ranking Well In The Search Engines
Onpage search engine optimization are things that you can change ON your webpage.
Dont Submit Your Website To Any Search Engines
We all want to get our websites high up in the search enignes but how do you do it? One thing you shouldn't bother doing is submit your site to any search engines. Not Google, not Yahoo!, not AltaVista. Sound a bit strange? Read on...
3.5 Tips To Help You Avoid Becoming The Next Search Engine Outlaw
Want to avoid being blacklisted by the search engines and banished to the sin bin never to receive a single search engine visitor ever again? Thought so. Here's some tips to help you..
Effective Search Engine Use
The Internet is a wonderful place full of resources that can be really helpful for us.
SEO Expert Guide - Proposition Development (part 2/10)
It is literally amazing how many people start their online business presence by buying a domain name (close to their business name) and building a brochure-ware page. Only later do they turn their mind to optimizing their site for (i) their audience and (ii) the way their audience find them. Fewer still take a long, hard look at what their competitors are doing first.
What Is Waiting for Us? Tomorrows SEO Industry
Today, SEO is swiftly approaching saturation point. More and more webmasters realise the necessity of learning SEO basics, and as they do so, SEO professionals are facing difficulties finding new clients. With all the niche sites optimised, it will be harder to compete for good key phrases. Link building opportunities will be easily found and utilised by everyone, keyword density will reach its optimum value, meaning that the SERPs will consist of equally good and equally relevant sites - at least from the traditional SEO point of view.
Using Blogs for SEO
Why Start A Blog?
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) - Houses on Sand
Do you depend on free search engine traffic for your livelihood?
Search Engines: Different Types, Different Strategies
There are four basic types of Search Engines:
Google Has No Content On Page
One of the post from My SEO world Meet Up Group?.!
Get Personal With Google
Anyone who's been on the net any time at all knows that Google has been the search engine of choice for many for a while now. Whether that continues remains to be seen, but for now, with MSN still in development and Yahoo going through some growing pains, many still feel that Google is the leader. As such, it's worth dropping in to the Google Labs every now and then to see what's going on there.
Screwed: Is this an inevitability in the SEO World?
By about 2pm everyday, each of my team members has spoken to a good handful of clients and potential clients who have been speaking with other SEO firms. This an absolutely wonderful thing to see, as in the past in our industry, not enough of our consumers were questioning what they were purchasing. It is a sign that accountability will come and the bad guys will be weeded out.While this is a good sign, it's the cause of my having to answer the same questions over and over. The consumers in the SEO world are being fed out and out lies by some of the people who call themselves experts in the area of Search Engine Optimization. They hear these lies and while comparing prices, contact us at Abalone Designs. They then proceed to tell me everything that all of these other companies promised them and I am utterly astonished. Here some of the most asinine claims I hear through the grapevine."We can guarantee your rankings" Don't be fooled! Ask the company what you will be ranking for, immediately! 9 times out of 10, a company that guarantees you rankings, is guaranteeing that you will rank for your own company name, which means people on Google or MSN or Yahoo! would have to know your company name before searching. How does this produce new customers and visitors to your site? Chances are, as soon as these search engines index your site, you will rank within the top ten for your company name, if not first, because it is unique. Why bother paying someone for something that is already going to happen, anyway? Guaranteeing rankings is highly unethical. It is impossible to guarantee rankings unless you have access to Google's database itself, and even then I'm not sure it's possible. Keep in mind, we are working with a 3rd party, here. A highly guarded 3rd party that doesn't, under any circumstances, reveal it's secrets. No one outside of the companies that run these search engines knows what it is exactly that makes search engines rank sites high. Especially due to the fact that these search engines and the rigorous ranking filters they use to spit out search results change almost monthly. Even a former Google employee doesn't know how to guarantee rankings! If someone is telling you they'll guarantee top rankings, run fast! Those are some shady, shady claims. Google themselves have said:"No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google - Beware of SEO's that claim to guarantee rankings, or that claim a "special relationship" with Google, or that claim to have a "priority submit" to Google. There is no priority submit for Google. In fact, the only way to submit a site to Google directly is by using the page at http:// www.google.com/addurl.html. You can do this yourself at no cost whatsoever." - http:// www.google.com/intl/en/webmasters/seo.htmlAn ethical SEO company will not guarantee rankings. They will guarantee that their methods follow search engine guidelines, and they will guarantee customer satisfaction, but at no point in time will any SEO company with a conscience guarantee your rankings."Your site needs to be continually resubmitted to get on and stay on the search engines" When will I see the end of this one? How old is this method now? 5 years? 10 years? We're talking about the days when Webcrawler was the biggest search engine and all computers were beige! This claim is so fully untrue, had Pinocchio uttered it, his nose would have stretched from Rome to Poughkeepsie. And the good folks at Google will once again back me up on this one:"Submission is not necessary and does not guarantee inclusion in our index. Given the large number of sites submitting URLs, it's likely your pages will be found in an automatic crawl before they make it into our index through the URL submission form. We DO NOT add all submitted URLs to our index, and cannot predict when or if they will appear." - http:// www.google.com/intl/en/webmasters/1.html#A2"Meta tags are not important anymore"Sure they aren't. If you don't want a decent ranking on MSN. The new MSN search places a lot of value on the keywords and description meta tags. Without these tags in your site's code, your ranking on MSN will suffer. Just as importantly, if your keywords and description meta tags don't use proper language, your rankings will suffer. The description tag is also what MSN uses as the visible description for a site in the search results. And of course, to prove I'm not the one blowing hot air, here is what MSN themselves say about it:"Site descriptions are extracted from the content of your page each time MSNBot crawls your site and indexes its pages... ...the best way to affect your site description is to ensure that your web pages effectively deliver the information you want to see in search results." - Click here to see the page this is found on. "Your Web Site Has Been Sabotaged" This one is truly unreal. I can't believe it's even been used as an excuse for why an SEO company hasn't achieved decent rankings for you. But alas, more than one SEO company has told potential clients of ours that the reason they are not ranking well, or why their search engine optimization campaign is not effective, is because someone else has been sabotaging the site. Some of the clients who have been told this are small businesses, like bed and breakfasts or pet sitters. We always explain to these potential clients that the likelihood of someone even having the initial idea to sabotage a web site, the site in question would have to be a fairly large one, and the target of a lot of hatred. Why? Because sabotaging a web site's rankings takes a massive amount of time and energy. We're talking months, maybe even years of hard, hard work. Why would anyone devote months or years of their life to taking down a pet sitting site? Or a bed and breakfast?Once again, these are some hefty claims and it is a clear sign that the company who is running your SEO campaign is unwilling to be held accountable for their actions or lack thereof.Don't Put Up With It. The bottom line is, your search engine optimization company works for you. You are paying them. Hold them accountable as you would any other vendor. Keep reading these articles, read info at the search engines, educate yourself and if something your SEO says smells a little rotten, don't be afraid to call them on it.Is being screwed an inevitability in the SEO world? Damn near. But thanks to the increasing interest of our consumers in self-education and their increased questioning, our industry will slowly climb out of the gutter and someday down the line, send this article into antiquity. In spite of my pride, I'd be overjoyed to see that day come.
Complete Web-Site Optimization For Search Engines (Part 2)
Source code optimization.
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