Archive for the ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ Category

6 Ways to Integrate Search and Social Media Marketing

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

1. Social Sharing Buttons on Your Website – It may seem simple, but search engines like Google are starting to use social media sharing data to influence search rankings. As a marketer, it is critically important to have social media sharing buttons on your blog and website to encourage visitors to share content in social media. These buttons will not only help to increase traffic from social media but will also play an important role today and in the future for ranking positions in search engines.

2. Integrated Keywords – The line between search engines and social media platforms is blurring. Take the keyword strategy you are using for your website and apply it to your social media conversations when appropriate. This doesn’t mean cramming tweets full of keywords. Instead, be aware of how you are wording social media messages. By incorporating keywords into social media content, you can increase the reach of your messages.

3. Include Links in Social Profiles – The links in social media messages such as tweets and Facebook status updates are traditionally no-follow links. This means they don’t pass any SEO authority to the site they’re linking to. While this is starting to change, it is important to understand that the URL in the actual bio of a social media account is a follow link. Keep this in mind, and make sure you are taking advantage of these extra links.

4. Optimise Social Profiles – Think of social media profile pages as extensions of your website. In the same way that you would optimise website pages for page titles and keywords, audit your social media profiles to ensure they mirror the search engine optimisation strategy of your website.

5. Build Links and Social Media Reach – Search engine optimisation has long been about inbound links to your website. While inbound links are still really important, a secondary metric for marketers looking to increase search traffic should be social media reach. Social media data is now becoming a major factor in search engine rankings. In order to get more people to share your content in social media, you need to increase the number of fans or followers of your account. By doing this through quality content creation and engagement, you will not only build social media reach but also inbound links.

6. Establish New Relationships – The web is now a social communications channel. Similar to sales, relationships are huge for driving inbound links and social media attention. Building relationships using social media can open opportunities for guest blog posts and other link-building opportunities.

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Search Engine Optimisation for beginners. Part 3

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Why do I need backlinks?

Who cares if you have any backlinks! Well, actually the search engines do… quite a lot actually.
They take into consideration, how many sites link to your webpage, and consider it to be a kind of “vote” for your site. I mean who would link to a site that had no useful info on it, or provided no value?

Another thing that gets factored into the equation is the quality of those backlinks pointing at you. Do you have 30 PR0 sites linking to you? Perhaps you have twenty or so links from sites on the same IP? (All from your other websites, it’s assumed) Perhaps you have mastered the art of blog commenting to the 9th degree, and have 10,000 of those, and only those?

It’s a good idea to have a healthy mix of backlinks; your goal here is to target three things.

  1. Quality –you can’t beat a high PR backlink from an authority site in your niche after all.
  2. Relevance – having a site in your niche link to you carries more weight than having one from a website on a totally different topic.
  3. Quantity – Do you know how to outrank your competition? It’s easy! Build more quality links than them!

Building backlinks should be an ongoing part of any website’s marketing plans. Do some keyword research, calculate just what you need in order to rise to the next level, or SERP (Search Engine Ranking Position) and decide on the number of links you’re going to build on a monthly or weekly basis. If you’re not comfortable you can always outsource work like this to other companies, or even other website owners.

“Remember!  The more roads that lead to your website the more potential traffic you’ll receive”

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Search Engine Optimisation for beginners. Part 2

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Research: How to Find the Right Keywords

Sure, research is a little tedious, but it’s an indispensable part of finding the right keywords. You want to uncover keywords that:

Have a high search volume (people are looking for the keywords)
Have low competition (smaller amount of results will mean your chances of ranking higher improve)
Are supported by your content (the keywords are relevant to your site).

There are lots of tools to aid you in finding the right keywords, the most popular being Google’s Search-Based Keyword Tool. It provides results based on actual Google searches, and if you are logged into an AdWords account, it will also give you a list of keyword ideas customized to the site on the account.

Before you get too far though, let’s discuss an important concept for deciding how broad or narrow you want your keywords to be. It’s called, “The Long Tail.”

The Long Tail

Popularized by Chris Anderson, the Long Tail describes a phenomenon where lots of low traffic keywords can collectively send you more visitors than a few high-traffic keywords.

For example, although Amazon may get thousands of visits from the keyword “DVD,” they get millions of visits from all of the individual DVD titles (i.e., Dark Knight, Toy Story, etc.). Individually, none of those titles get anywhere close to the traffic of a term like, “DVD,” but collectively, their volume is a lot larger than any one keyword.

How does the long tail apply to you?

When you combine them all, your long tail (unpopular) keywords should make up roughly 80% of your traffic. So, when you’re researching keywords, don’t just focus on the ones getting massive amounts of traffic. Take note of some of the less popular ones too, and then incorporate them into your overall strategy.

Crafting Your Content

After you pick the right keywords, it’s important to start crafting your content.

Search engines have bots that automatically crawl your website, “reading” it to find out what it’s about and then deciding which keywords each of your pages should rank for. You can influence their “decisions” by strategically optimizing your content for certain keywords.

This is especially true if you’re creating content bots can’t read. It’s easy for bots to interpret text, but they aren’t advanced enough yet to watch videos, look at images, or listen to audio. You’ll need to describe them, so they bot can understand and rank your pages for the appropriate keywords.

One quick word of warning, though.

Writing solely for search engines usually makes your content boring, and typically, that won’t help convert your visitors into customers. It’s far better to focus on people first, making your content as easy as possible, and then optimize for search engine bots where you can, without sacrificing the persuasiveness of your content.
Pay attention to:

  • Titles – Create eye-catching titles that raise the reader’s interest. You only have one chance to make a great first impression.
  • Keywords – Pick keywords that will help bring people to your site and are relevant.
    Links – Link to quality sites that compliment what your website is about. It’ll encourage sites in your niche to link to you as well.
  • Quality – Try to publish unique and quality content. This prompts users to come to your site because they cannot easily find the content elsewhere.
  • Freshness – If you are publishing content that does not age or become outdated, that’s great, but you also need to add new content on a regular basis. If you don’t have the time to add content to your website, consider adding a question and answer section or a blog to your website.

And most importantly, do not publish someone else’s content on your site. This creates duplicate content, and search engines can penalize you for it.

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Search Engine Optimisation for beginners. Part 1

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010


You hear the term all the time, but how do you actually rank higher in the search engines? I know when I first heard the term, it sounded like some voodoo magic that only a few people understood how to use.
The reality is, SEO isn’t rocket science. Some gurus would have you believe it takes years of dedicated study to understand it, but I don’t think that’s true. Sure, mastering the subtle nuances takes time, but the truth is that you can learn the fundamentals in just a few minutes.

So, I got to thinking, “Why don’t I lay out the basics, all in some blog posts?”

It’s a long one, to be sure, but after years of studying SEO and working behind the scenes to help companies get first page rankings, I’m convinced this is all you need to know. If you are looking to boost your traffic so that you can increase your sales, just follow these basic guidelines.

The Traffic Trap (and How SEO Really Works)

Lots of marketers make the mistake of seeing SEO only as a source of free traffic. It’s true, free traffic is the end result, but it’s not how SEO works.

The real purpose of SEO is to help people who are looking for you find you. To do that, you have to match the content on your website to what people are trying to find.

For example:

Mary sells custom knitted sweaters. On her blog, she shows how she makes the sweaters by hand, often talking about the different yarns she uses. There’s not much competition for keywords relating to yarn, and Mary is publishing lots of great content about it, so before long, she has front page rankings for several different types of yarn.

Do you see the potential problem?

The people searching for yarn most likely knit themselves, and it’s unlikely they’ll be interested in purchasing Mary’s sweaters. She’ll get lots of traffic, sure, but none of the traffic will convert, because the visitors have completely different goals.

The lesson here: if you want SEO to work for you, you need to make sure your goals match the goals of your visitors. It’s not about traffic. It’s about figuring out what you want, and then optimizing for keywords that bring in visitors who want the same things.

How do you discover what those keywords are?

Simple: research.

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