Archive for the ‘SEO’ Category
Loving the new Google Panda 4 Update (Panda 2.0 Update) – sometimes, maybe not!
Ok so I have spent practically all morning checking rankings, testing results, viewing link profiles, checking authority of sites and pages, and all that across a large number of sites – some which I know and some which I have never seen before – and I really don’t get what Google have messed up on this latest Panda 2.0 update! (That’s Panda 4 to most people, especially if you follow sites such as Search Engine Land, the 2.0 is the internal name given to this update by Google as the two before this where classed as refreshes rather than updates as explained here http://searchengineland.com/penguin-4-with-penguin-2-0-generation-spam-fighting-is-now-live-160544).
After this Panda 4 Update (I will continue to use 2.0 for the remainder of this post) we now see a large number of searches I regularly follow/check for our clients are strongly promoting eBay listings and keyword rich domains again – which is something Google had fixed a while back and seem to have gone back wards with this Panda 2.0 update!
And that’s not all I can see wrong with this update! Google use to show sites with more authority in the top positions, but now they seem to be ranking more less-authoritative sites over those which hold authority in their given market! Not to mention that a vast majority of these newly ranking sites I have never seen before, and some of them look god awfully ugly, which I know isn’t a ranking factor but it just makes these newly ranking sites look unprofessional compared to the authoritative ones which Google use to rank much better than they do today – It’s important to note I am talking about e-commerce sites and mostly product or product category related keywords.
Another concern for me is that Google was meant to be – or rather meant to have been – making changes so that we don’t see so many listings from the same domains when performing a search, but that doesn’t seem to be working so well! In the vast majority of searches I perform on a daily bases I still see a good amount of them displaying results from the same domain – most of which are only somewhat related to my search, unlike sites which have been pushed down the SERPs which are much more relevant than these multiple listings!
In my honest and professional opinion as an SEO professional I feel Google have gone backwards with this Panda 2.0 update and that it should be reverted, and what’s more I don’t seem to be the only one with these thoughts/feels! Even Matt Cutts blog (see http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/penguin-2-0-rolled-out-today/) post about the update has had a large number of people complaining about it! And guess what, a large majority of those people complaining about this Panda update do have websites which should not have been pushed down the SERPs and do practise white hat SEO!
So the big question I would love to ask Google is, what exactly was this latest Panda 2.0 Update supposed to fix? Because to me and many others it seems to have made the results worse not better!
Having a blog on your real estate website is a great way to increase traffic to your website as well as the number of clients you deal with. As long as your website has a good conversion rate, the more website visitors you gain the more clients you will deal with. In order to get this good conversion rate, you need to constantly work on your blog to ensure it is providing the type of results you are looking for.
Ways to Improve your Real Estate Blog
Internal Link Structure
One quick and easy way to improve your real estate blog is to ensure you have a good internal link structure in place. This means linking to other blog posts within your content. There are several reasons why you want to make sure your website has a good internal link structure in place. One of the reasons is so that the search engines can easily index all of your content and associate it with the correct keywords. The anchor text you use to link to your old blog posts will give the search engines a better idea of what your content is about and which keywords it should be associated with.
Also, with a good internal link structure in place, your readers will be able to easily find other content you have written that they may be interested in. When someone is reading a blog post you have written and thoroughly enjoys what you have written, they will be more likely to want to read some of your other posts. Placing links to your other posts in your content makes it extremely easy for your readers to find your other content, allowing you to position yourself as a real estate expert.
Clean Up your Sidebar
It is very easy for your sidebar to become cluttered on your blog, especially since many sidebars are just widgets. Cleaning up your sidebar so it is easy for your visitors to find the content they are looking for will improve the user experience related to your blog, which in turn will improve the view someone has of your real estate business.
Test your Calls-to-Action
Each blog post should include a call-to-action that pushes a reader closer to becoming one of your clients. If you have noticed a decline in your conversion rates, you will want to test different calls-to-action to see if you cannot increase your number of conversions. Your blog could receive all of the traffic in the world but if it does not have a good conversion rate all of that traffic is worthless.
Re-evaluate your Content
Most real estate agents start blogging with a specific niche in mind. Over time, it is natural for someone to forget their original niche and start producing content just to produce content. If you have noticed your blog posts are no longer speaking to your original intended niche, you will want to refocus your content strategy and start producing blog posts that speak to that niche market again.
Place Optimized Videos on your Blog
Placing optimized videos on your blog is another good way to gain additional traffic. Search engines are starting to give preferential treatment to websites that include videos on their site. By placing a video of your current real estate listings on your website, you will be able to leverage the search engines’ preference for video content into more visitors for your blog.
Real Estate Video SEO Tips
When you do start to place videos on your real estate blog, it is important that you take to the time to SEO optimize these videos to get the best results. The first thing you want to keep in mind is the quality of your content. If you produce high quality videos, your visitors will become engaged with your content and more likely to share your videos with their friends and family. This will help give your YouTube channel, if you are using YouTube to host your videos, more authority.
When your YouTube channel starts to gain authority, your videos will appear higher in the search rankings, sending more traffic to your videos. This traffic will then share your videos with their social circles, allowing your channel to gain inbound links. These inbound links will help improve your search engine rankings for your videos, further increasing the number of views each of your videos receives.
Having a blog on your real estate website is a great way to market your business online. Making subtle changes to your blog such as improving your internal link structure, cleaning up your side bar, testing new calls-to-action, re-evaluating your content, and placing videos on your website will help you gain new visitors which in turn will be converted into new clients.
BenSawyer is in internet marketing for more than 5 years, working as SEO consultant. In this article are some of his most useful tips from his blogging campaign for one of his well known clients, http://www.arvernebythesea.com , real estate NYC company.
Have you ever heard the saying ‘content is king’? If you have ever dabbled with SEO and online marketing, you must have heard this saying a thousand times. Aside from this saying, there is also the one telling us how SEO is no longer important. Well, even though both of these saying are extremely popular and everywhere to be found, the fact of the matter is that neither of these saying is true. Yes, there is some truth to both of them, but they are not true per se. Namely, content, also known as the message, truly is king only if you manage to get the messengers right. On the other hand, the messengers could be perfect and worth nothing at all if they are delivering the wrong message, i.e. content.
The Message, aka Content – What Is Important Here?
You can have the best messenger in the world and still draw a blank, so to speak, if your message isn’t up to par. What this means is that content sells, and bad content doesn’t – it is that simple. When you think about it, you can witness written content being everywhere you look – on food packaging, on TV and newspaper ads, on billboards around the world, and so on. If this were badly written and badly thought-through content, these ads would never be effective at all. However, if the content is great, then the whole message becomes perfect and it has high chances of doing its task. Therefore, we can see that content is in fact very important, but it is very important to note that the message is not the only important aspect of SEO.
The Messengers – Can They Deliver the Message?
We all remember the famous lines uttered by Clint Eastwood: “Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?” This is basically the recipe for perfect SEO. Namely, this is great content delivered by a great messenger. If this line had been uttered by anyone else, it probably wouldn’t have become as famous as it is today. On the other hand, Dirty Harry many other great lines, but this one stands out. This is then the perfect example of good messenger but bad message, i.e. content. It is very easy to take a great message, in this example perfectly written content, and use the wrong messenger to deliver the content. So, the messenger aspect of the SEO equation must also be dead on target, or otherwise there is no talk about successful SEO.
Do Not Forget About the Receiver of the Message
In the end, we will also mention the target audience, as this is yet another crucial part of the SEO equation. Namely, if you lose sight of your target audience, you will never have the chance to create the perfect message, as you need to know everything about your readers and website visitors in order to create the content that will produce results.
All in all, there are three equally important parts of the SEO equation – the message or content, the messengers, and the target audience or the receiver of the message. You cannot even dream about successful SEO without all of these three taken to perfection.
This article has been written by Amanda for a SEO Sydney company. Amanda is a freelance writer and has clients based across Australia.
Is SEO Dead?
Yes, But Only to Some Ignorant People…
The below infographic has been created to highlight how some silly or miss in formed people have claimed the “death of SEO” for over a decade now & yet even after many algorithm updates, the social media ponzi scam imploding and much more, SEO is still very much alive and kicking and going strong for those that know how to do SEO for the long term results that matter!
Please click the image to enlarge it, and please don’t forget to read the disclaimer after the infographic!
Please note by posting this infographic I and the creators of it are in no way saying all people in the fields mentioned are hacks ignorant of SEO! (we have brilliant friends at start ups & web design shops & so on that are razor sharp with SEO). This infographic was produced by SEO Book
The “death of SEO” infographic is simply to illustrate some examples of the particularly egregious and bogus claims which have been shouted incorrectly by an absurd and very wrong few.
The goal and reason behind this infographic is to in fact help us real SEO’s have a little something to push back in the faces of anyone that may bring up “the death of SEO”, so when ever you see someone claiming the death of SEO just remember this short url as your response so you can post the image to show them once again they are wrong!
SEO and PPC are two of the best ways you can advertise a business on the Internet. Consumers are no longer using phone books to find businesses selling the products or services they are seeking, but rather they are turning to Internet search engines to find these businesses for them. When you advertise via SEO or PPC, you will be able to get your website in front of consumers interested in what you are selling, allowing you to increase your revenue.
Long Term Traffic: SEO is known for its long term traffic. Once you rank on the first page of the search engine results for a term that receives a large number of daily searches, you can bank on a lot of traffic being generate for your site. As long as you monitor your rankings and do not do anything to jeopardize your rankings, you should continue receiving this traffic for a substantial amount of time.
Great ROI: SEO also provides excellent ROI figures. It is easy to find SEO help for your website for a reasonable price. If you have large profit margins with your products or services, the increased amount of traffic being driven to your website will offset the costs of running an SEO campaign and you will still be able to see a large increase in your profits.
Increase Conversion Rates: Search engine optimization allows you to increase your conversion rates as well by only targeting keywords that people type into the search engines when they are ready to buy what you are selling. When you only target your ideal customers, you are sure to see an increase in the number of conversions your website generates.
Site Can Be Penalized: If you over optimize your website, search engines can penalize your website and drop it far down the rankings. This can be detrimental to your business if you rely on Internet search engines to drive a lot of traffic to your website. Carefully planning and executing your SEO plan will help you avoid any penalties from the search engines.
Takes Time to See Results: One of the biggest drawbacks associated with SEO is that it takes time to see any positive results. It can take several weeks before you see your website move up in the rankings. If you are in need of instant traffic to your website, SEO may not be the best option.
Instantly Drive Traffic to your Site: PPC can instantly drive traffic to your website, providing an immediate boost in sales. As soon as you create your ads and submit them for review, they will start appearing in the search results to millions of consumers. If you are targeting keywords that receive a large amount of search volume, you should start seeing traffic to your website almost immediately.
Easy to Track Campaigns: Pay per click advertising platforms make it easy to track your campaign’s success. These platforms will track a large amount of data such as impressions and clicks which will allow you to instantly measure the success of a certain campaign. If you notice your click through rate is subpar, you can make changes to your advertisements and split test a different title or copy to see if you can improve the success of the campaign while it is still running.
Dependent on Keyword Research: PPC advertising requires intensive keyword research if you hope to be successful and see a large ROI. This research can take hours and is quite time consuming. If you do not spend the time properly researching keywords related to your industry, you may end up wasting your money by bidding on terms that do not convert, which will have a dramatic effect on the ROI of your PPC campaign.
Need Good Copy writing Skills: PPC also requires good copy writing skills, which many people do not possess. If your ads are not compelling and entice consumers to click and visit your website, your campaign will not be nearly as effective as it could be. If you are lacking good copy writing skills, it can be difficult to run a profitable PPC campaign.
While both PPC and SEO have their pros and cons, both are necessary marketing tools for businesses looking to expand their online presence. Having a sound PPC foundation in place while making changes to your website to adhere to the latest SEO best practices is a winning formula every business can use when looking to market their products or services on the Internet.
Richard H., is currently working for www.newyorkstatedivorce.com, on their web page, customizing and optimizing for better loading time. Also likes to writes article about internet in general, mainly about WordPress tips & tricks.
As you may have read from my last post, googles latest set of messages via Google Webmaster Tools was aimed at sites with “unnatural links” of which we were lucky to have been sent one of the messages for a clients site at work in the early hours of morning on Thursday 19th July.
Here is the first message that we got from google on the 19th:
Dear site owner or webmaster of
link removed,We’ve detected that some of your site’s pages may be using techniques that are outside Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.Specifically, look for possibly artificial or unnatural links pointing to your site that could be intended to manipulate PageRank. Examples of unnatural linking could include buying links to pass PageRank or participating in link schemes.We encourage you to make changes to your site so that it meets our quality guidelines. Once you’ve made these changes, please submit your site for reconsideration in Google’s search results.If you find unnatural links to your site that you are unable to control or remove, please provide the details in your reconsideration request.If you have any questions about how to resolve this issue, please see our Webmaster Help Forum for support.Sincerely,Google Search Quality Team
Yesterday (Monday 23rd July) we were sent one of the new “Unnatural inbound links” messages for the same client to kind of clear up the last message google send as above. here is the new message we got last night at about 19:40 GMT:
We’ve detected that some of the links pointing to your site are using techniques outside Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.We don’t want to put any trust in links that are artificial or unnatural. We recommend removing any unnatural links to your site. However, we do realize that some links are outside of your control. As a result, for this specific incident we are taking very targeted action on the unnatural links instead of your site as a whole. If you are able to remove any of the links, please submit a reconsideration request, including the actions that you took.If you have any questions, please visit our Webmaster Help Forum.
I don’t know why google have to start sending so many messages out to webmasters over nothing? I would rather google simply messaged us if something was wrong to let us know what needs fixing. For example, if we had some bad links I would be happy for google to tell me so I can remove them. But having google simply message us to let us know they think some links are unnatural looking so they might devalue them is not of help to me or them so why waste or time?
On a plus note, Google’s Matt Cutts replied to Search Engine Land with also see this message from Matt on G+:
An engineer worked over the weekend and starting with the messages that we sent out on Sunday, the messages are now different so that you can tell which type of situation you’re in.
We also changed the UI in the webmaster console to remove the yellow caution sign for these newer messages. That reflects the fact that these newer notifications are much more targeted and don’t always require action by the site owner.
So it sounds as though googles latest round of so called “Unnatural links” messages may have been sent by mistake (that’s if you read behind the lines like I do in know that google don’t always get it right and do happen to punish sites wrongfully some times (as they have admitted in the past after the damage is done).
But google has made a stand on this and sounds as if they are saying that people will be getting different message to let them know that google might have spotted some unnatural or not so trust worthy links in their link profile. Yet still, google does not let you know which links or domains are looking bad, they simply stick the the same old ‘fix something we don’t want to fully tell you about or we will devalue it and maybe punish your site for it!’
So if you have been sent both of these messages, it sounds like you could be safe but I would recommend at least checking your link profile with the likes of OSE, Majestic SEO or Advanced Web Ranking just to make sure you don’t have some unnatural or untrusted looking links which google may want to devalue or punish you for.
Should we be paying directories or companies to remove our lower quality links? That’s the question on everyone’s minds lately and seems to be being asked in many forums, blogs and other seo/webmaster related sites.
I noticed a handful of sites doing this about a month ago, but I will come to that in a minute. First of all, my reason for writing about this is because of this post at SEL http://searchengineland.com/link-directories-want-us-to-remove-your-links-pay-us-128237 which reminded me about what I noticed some directories doing (very sneaky IMO as you will read below).
So basically the question is should you be paying these directories or other so called “companies” to have your directory links removed? I personally believe the answer is no! If you can’t remove a link to something you own for free then its time to take action on that site/persons/company for trying to con money from you for something your legally entitled to ask them to remove (unless you signed a contract to have your link on there site of course).
Thanks to Search Engine Land for the image, I hope you like my addition of the $.
Lets forget about the legal mambo-jumbo if you signed or agreed to a contract to give a site explicit rights to link to you because we all know that’s not what you agree to when agreeing to a directories terms etc.
The cheeky “pay to remove my link” scheme I spotted!
Ok so here is what I spotted the other week after reading this post by Barry Schwartz http://www.seroundtable.com/link-removals-15349.html and this is what I commented about on that post:
One of the sites mentioned in that post (deletebacklinks.com) which offers the services to remove unwanted links from directories, is in fact a con! After reading the above article on seroundtable I thought I would run a couple of tests of it for one of our clients sites at work and it came up with 3 old directories which have since been removed from googles index, but check this out…
I clicked on hometaker.com which was the first one on the list of domains/sites it gave me and I noticed that the “Remove unwanted backlinks” button in the top navigation points to… guess where…! That’s right straight back to deletebacklinks.com with an affiliate url. So it’s pointing you back to the site that offers to remove the links for a charge in the first place. A little strange right?
So I then dug a little deeper by looking into the other 5 directories which deletebacklinks.com listed for me and your never guess… 4/5 of them are exactly the same, with the same affiliate ID linking back to the very same site that warned me to get those directory links removed for a fee!
To me this quite simply screams out scam! IMO it looks like the guy either owned the directories from the start or he has simply gone out buying rubbish directories which google don’t like or have been removed from google’s index or he is out buying such domains in the hope people will use his service to get the links removed!
I bet I could find more of this type of thing and have noticed some others doing this on a small scale (2-3 sites) which are all registered to the same person’s’ and even hosted on the same server/IP.
What to do if I want my link’s’ removed from a directory.
My first step would be to email the directory and ask them if they wouldn’t mind removing the link for me because I would like to start fresh with my sites link profile. If I get no response from this I would send a second email requesting them to remove my link within 3 working days or I would have to take further action on the matter.
If that second email got no response or they still refused to take my link down for free I would remind them that the site they are linking to is my property and I have a legal right to demand that they remove the link, so they may take this email as that demand. Meaning if my link is not removed within 48hours (2 days) I would be forced to take legal action against them of which they would have to pay for at the end and I would also be in contact with there host to let them know that they have a link pointing to my site which is up for a law suit due to damages and thus if the site is not taken down whilst I am waiting for the legal parties to remove it the host would also be held liable. This might not be 100% true but who would want to risk such a bold claim if they can see you are taking action against them and have already filled a DMCA link removal request against them? (You should fill the DMCA link removal request at the same time as the second email to try and help speed the process up a little).
That’s about all I have time to write because I need to get back to work now, but if you have anything to add to it please feel free to use my contact form or leave a comment and I will add in any relevant information provided
Please note that I have not and will not link to such sites because they are owned by very bad people who are simply out to try and rob the innocent webmasters of extra cash to simply hit the delete button after searching for your domain name in their directory.
And yes it is that simply and fast to remove a link from a directory! For example in phpLD you simply search for a domain [nathanielbailey.co.uk] look to the right of the listing and hit the delete button!
So for someone to charge you to remove something you legally have the right to request them to remove is day light robbery and should NOT be allowed to continue!
Here’s an idea for the guys and girls at google, de-index these sites that are trying to con people out of money just to hit the delete button on a link!