December 14, 2017

Optimizing Your Website’s eCommerce to be more SEO friendly

Webmasters all over share certain goals and one huge goal is to make sure that their sites are optimized to be more SEO friendly. This is especially true for ecommerce websites. SEO is a necessary component of any organic search engine traffic. Ecommerce sites are generally utilizing many marketing tactics already, but that does not mean they should limit themselves. Search engines can provide a lot of power for ecommerce sites and help the company gain exposure.

That being said, many ecommerce websites are still not utilizing all of the components of SEO which they could. For ecommerce sites to truly expound upon SEO to their advantage they must cover a few basic necessities. By doing this you will help generate traffic to the site in a fast and simple manner.

The first step is to ensure that your company is using an SEO-friendly shopping cart. When you have to modify your pages at a later date and change the page optimization for your site you will be glad that the shopping cart is ready. Things are simpler with the use of an SEO-friendly shopping cart. It is important that when you are deciding upon the many shopping cart options that you do not make it harder for yourself, but instead you are able to easily apply SEO.

The next most important thing is to use a proper internal linking structure. You want to make sure that the impression you leave on search engines is a positive one. To do this you need to have a great internal linking strategy which makes it easier for search engines and users to navigate. You should focus on more than just your visitors—focus on the search engine spiders and make your site friendly for them. If your focus is on authority websites you will quickly see that their related content is linked. This makes it easier for visitors to travel from page to page and not face any problems. This is very useful and relevant for visitors and also helps SEO by providing lots of internal links and influencing rank. Search engines take ranking very seriously. If you integrate anchor text when linking related pages together search engines will be happier and you will get a higher ranking.

It is also important that you make new material for your website so that you can rank higher based upon your group of keywords. With an eCommerce website you might find it challenging to keep your material fresh. You can do this by having customers write product reviews. With an ecommerce site you will have lists of products. Customers should be given the opportunity to place positive and negative reviews and opinions related to your products. This can create active conversations and thus direct traffic to your site. People who are new to your site will see lots of happy reviews when they first arrive. Doing this means that the search engines have new material to crawl since customers are continually leaving new material and comments. It is a simple idea which can generate a lot of SEO results. Treat an ecommerce website the same as you would another website. Your goal is to achieve the highest rank.

Optimize Your SEO for Local Businesses

Local Search is really taking off these days, especially with the inception of Google Plus.  Right now Google Plus is good for personal pages, but Google + for Business is right around the corner and will be a huge “plus” for local search.

In order to optimize your localization SEO for your business, you need to utilize keyword research. Your on-site optimization is based upon keyword research. Google Analytics is the industry standard for analyzing web keywords.  The use of the keyword filter should help you to target the local used keywords for your small business.  Keyword research is one of the most important SEO components for any business. It is this research which determines who is able to find your website and who is not and by what keyword are being searched for.  If you neglect to incorporate important keywords then you lose targeted traffic. The less traffic you have the lower the opportunities for sales conversion.

When you use keyword research tools you will get national search volume information. However, in order to determine keywords for a local small business you do not need national level rankings. What you need is to help your company appeal to the local levels. This can be done with Google Places.

Use of Google Places:
Google places is referred to as virtual real estate for businesses that are listed in the top keyword searched spots. Small businesses can submit their site to Google Places, a virtual directory, for free. This is particularly useful for small businesses which are new or on a tight budget. Small business owners cannot afford to overlook the importance of using Google Places. The purpose of the directory is to connect local smart phone and internet users to local businesses near their area. With a smart phone, users can take advantage of the Google apps to find locations near them at any time. This is not only beneficial for the customer but for the local businesses. In order to take advantage of this, businesses must place their complete listing on Google Places, and enjoy the benefits reaped from it in terms of increased customers and profit.

The rise of the iPhone and Google Android smart phones, using Google Places has become one of the most popular means of marketing a small business. Out of all the daily online activity conducted via smart phones, nearly seventy five percent of it relates to local content on Google ( Now, more than ever, small businesses should use the services provided with Google Places to increase their local customer base and draw attention to their company. Google Places is a viable tool for local marketing because it includes all of the same features that social customers need. There are demographics based upon geo-location, as well as reviews, recommendations, connected sharing, and mobile based marketing. Customers using social networks can even make recommendations to others on their network, which increases your small business. Whether you are a dry cleaners, dentist, or café, using Google Places means that people in your area and nearby can find your company instantly, review the pertinent information about the company, and then get directions to your doorstep.

As a free web marketing service, Google Places offers businesses an opportunity to describe their services and their products, including their hours of operation, their email address, phone number, address, and website. Small businesses can include photos and videos as well as customer views to enhance the Places page. When customers conduct localized search queries, Google Places pages appear at the top based upon category and location. They are generally accompanied by a red push pin which indicates the location of your business. From there users can click directly to the business website, read reviews, or read the Places page.

There are new tools offered to small businesses thanks to improvements on Google Places. Google places offers local maps which highlight the most popular places on the left hand side, which—if your business makes it to the top seven—is a very useful tool. It also puts local places listings above organic listings which help to increase your size and visibility. The listings with Google Places are more social than with organic listings because it leaps into the space for reviews and recommendations. It also ties directly to Google Maps and all of the related mobile applications for Google Maps which are used by potential customers.

I suggest digesting this infographic created by Mike Blumenthal.

Click to Enlarge



How Social Networks Affect Your Website’s SEO

Social networks, such as Facebook, Google+ and Twitter have become one the most relevant aspects of building a respectable SEO (search engine optimization), good page rank or a social media promotion campaign.  Social media just isn’t simply another tool which connects clients to businesses. It’s a great tool to connect businesses to client as well.  Facebook Fan Pages for businesses is a great powerful tool that harnesses the power of Facebook’s members.  Google+ for Businesses is also on it’s way. Even though Google+ hasn’t announced that business pages or business profiles are allowed, many are trying to jump on the bad wagon of the power of Google in promoting their businesses with Google+.  There isn’t one social media platform that carries the utmost authority in terms of matching businesses with success. Facebook does a good job, but the question is how will Google Plus for Businesses handle it’s strength in allowing businesses to promote themselves online?  There are over 750 million users on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Google and Bing have recognized the power that these sites hold by linking your page rank directly with the authority your business has on these pages.  Google has announced that +1’s will be counted towards SEO, so this is big.

How will Google Plus for Businesses handle it’s strength in allowing businesses to promote themselves online?

Twitter is a crucial aspect of any successful business. In terms of reputation management, Twitter is one of the best tools businesses have. Using the @ and # symbol, businesses can directly contact customers to show that they care. In order to directly emulate link building, your company needs a good quality of Twitter followers, a large number of followers, and a large number of retweets and mentions.

In terms of the quantity of your followers, the more you have the better you can build your links. The number of followers you have will directly affect where your company ranks. Therefore, the more followers you have linking your sources as well as your articles, the higher your page rank will become. In terms of the quality of your followers, you want to ensure that you have high quality followers, not just followers for the sake of followers. It is important to have high authority authors following your business, mentioning your business, and linking to your site in order to positively affect your rank.

The number of retweets and mentions will directly affect how many times your company is linked. This will draw more traffic to your site and provide your original link with more authority. Being an authority does not means that you must be an authority on every topic. Posting relevant Tweets is one of the best ways to increase your ranking. You want to ensure that you are not limited to a single topic, but that your content remains relevant.

Facebook has become a tool imperative to the success of your SEO strategy. Everything mentioned pertaining to Twitter should also be applied to Facebook. The quality and quantity of your fans and friends is very important. You can also connect your Twitter account with your Facebook profile to increase the visibility and accessibility of your site and company. Along that note one of the best ways to build your rank is to utilize internal linking. Facebook offers users entire profiles which means you can link your twitter account, your website, your blog posts, your author bio, etc… you can literally link everything relevant to your Facebook to keep your friends and followers updated. Whenever possible it is good to offer incentives to people for friending your company page or linking your articles to their page or Twitter. Be sure to turn to friends, family, and coworkers first to help increase your personal networks and spread your page. The more people who see your page, the more traffic you can get toward your articles and your SEO rank.


How Outdated SEO Tactics Hurt Your Website’s SEO

SEO is one of the most important components of any online success. If you have a website then you know that SEO tactics have changed quickly over time with very large leaps and bounds. Things which might be useful one day are suddenly outdated the next. Understanding a complete guideline to SEO is challenging because the rules are constantly changing. New features ware being added and old features are being removed.

No longer can you simply build a website and get top rankings through metatags and keywords. There are many tactics now which are outdated and will ruin your website’s SEO. The first is keyword stuffing. Stuffing tons of keywords into your keyword metatag is useless. Using keyword metatags at all is an outdated SEO tactic. The algorithms used by search engines have become more complex which means that they search for content rather than just keywords. The keywords need to be tactfully integrated into the header, body, title tags, footer, and sub headings.

The second outdated SEO tactic is blog comment spamming. Webmasters might leave comments in online forums which link to their website but this is now considered spam. Google will see which links are posted in online communities or forums and will not give you credit for that link popularity. It is better to post well written comments and blogs with the links instead of spamming.

The third outdated SEO tactic is search engine submission. Many people used to provide services for submitting things to search engines. Today that service is dead. Create unique content and get links instead. Use social media accounts to link to your website. Search engines are recognizing the usefulness and authority offered by social networks.

The fourth outdated SEO tactic is meta tag optimization. Meta tags once played a large role in determining your page rank but not anymore. Search engines no longer notice them. Google has stated on record that they do not pay attention to meta keywords tag. Therefore, stuffing your content should no longer happen. Instead you can use tag and category systems to label and organize the content on your website. If you actively tag your pages and posts in an effective manner you can enjoy better usability, functionality, and search-ability.

The fifth outdated SEO tactic is link exchange. Exchanging links was once a popular method of building your websites’ links but no longer. Reciprocal link exchange was fine in moderation, but interlinking in order to increase your popularity is. When website owners actively engage in schemes to increase their link exchange and influence their rankings, Google will take notice and the website owner will be punished. Instead of this tactic, try to get active testimonials and reviews from vendors with whom you work. This is a favorable method of getting links to your website. Along the same lines, link buying is another outdated tactic. Link buying is when you buy links from websites in order to improve your search engine rank. This includes paying for reviews and using a link brokering service. Both are now frowned upon and can severely hurt your SEO.

How Duplicate Content Can Kill Your Website’s SEO

Many people and businesses type websites think that they can increase their search engine rankings or obtain multiple listings by providing multiple copies of the same page or similar copies of the same page because the presence of keywords is higher. Therefore, it’s important to keep in mind that duplicate content can be a silent killer and be detrimental to your website. Search engines, as Google, want and need fresh, new, unique relevant content on every page. Many websites, blogs and companies do not realize that having duplicate content means they could face a loss in traffic and SEO will ultimately suffer, especially new website marketers.

Duplicate Content = The Silent Website Killer

Google seeks to bring results that are based on relevant keywords. When you see multiple pages which have the same content, it means that content was taken(or stolen) from someone else’s site. This results in search engines being unable to differentiate between which site holds the authority to the copy. This is a large problem if many people start to link many versions of the same copy. Google Webmaster Tools will help you to diagnose whether or not your site has duplicate content, as well as

It is common to see two forms of duplicate content on sites today:

  1. Identically written pages which are listed on different websites. In simplistic terms, this means that the same article or blog post is listed on two different websites. This is considered to be duplicate and therefore considered unacceptable in Google’s eyes. This is a problem for associated sites which have the same or similar look and feel to them. With identical content, they are at a high risk for being marked as spam.
  2. Scraping (also called Web harvesting or Web data extraction) is a technique of extracting information(or text) from websites. It simply means that you are using a program to remove the text from one website and place it on yours. The biggest problems associated with duplicate content are that search engines are unable to identify which version or versions should be ranked for query results. Search engines also do not know which of the version or versions should be included or excluded from their indexes. Another major issue with duplicate, scraped content is that the search engines do not know whether they should direct the link metrics to a single page or keep the link metrics separated between the multiple versions.

When search engine robots crawl through a website, they will read, store and sort the information found in their database. After this, the robots will compare the findings on one with information already contained in the database. Using multiple factors, including the overall relevancy score related to the particular website, the search bot will determine which content is duplicate content. It will then filter out the pages which qualify as spam or the websites which qualify as spam. If your pages are not spam but they still contain enough similar content to be considered as such, they still run of the risk of being regarded as spam.

Many popular sites have been caught scraping content from other websites for the purpose of increasing their SEO, which happens at the expense of the other sites which already contain the information. Larger websites, which scrape content and post duplicate content for the purpose of SEO rankings, will outrank smaller websites and blogs, which leaves the smaller sites marked as spam. Google works very hard to ensure that duplicate content does not exist.

Buying Backlinks Can Produce Positive AND Negative Results

Backlinks are links from one site that point back to your website. They can be posted in forum discussions or an affiliate website. Typically when you buy Backlinks the link to your website is posted on a related website in exchange for their link being posted on your website. This is a form of affiliate marketing which can generate better SEO results for your company. When you buy Backlinks you can produce negative and positive results easily. Buying Backlinks can increase the number of backlinks to your site which than increases your search engine rank, but if you are not careful, it can result in your site being removed completely from search engines instead of being increased.  Links on Google Plus will also help your site immensely!

Understanding how buying backlinks can produce positive and negative results is an imperative part of your SEO success.

Google and Yahoo both rank your website in terms of the quantity and quality of the backlinks which direct to your website. The quality of the backlinks is determined by how relevant the other sites are to your site and where the link is placed as on the page. When you buy backlinks it is important that you avoid buying in mass because this might not contain sites relevant to your company.

Understanding how buying backlinks can produce positive and negative results is an imperative part of your SEO success. Good backlinks are links which include anchor text. This means that the text can be seen in the hyperlink. This uses relevant keywords in order to increase your rank among the search engines. Other good backlinks include links to and from websites which already have authority. This means sites which already have trust of search engines such as authority websites like Having backlinks from here can greatly increase your rank among search engines. Another form of good backlinks is when you link one useful website to another. For this, the sites should be relevant to one another. When you have forum signature linking, it means a discussion forum placed outbound links to relevant websites such as yours. This is a great example of good backlinks.

Bad backlinks present themselves in one of two forms. The first form is follow. This means it takes you somewhere. No-follow means it leads you no where. No-follow backlinks will considerably harm your search engine rankings. It is imperative that your links always lead somewhere. Other forms of bad backlinks include link spamming. This occurs when you add as many links as you whether or not they are relevant to your website. Sybill linking takes place when you establish a handful of websites under different domain names and then you link all of those together to try and trick search engines into giving you a higher rank. Using linking software to create many link connections and speed up your SEO process is another form of bad backlinks. These do not create links relevant to your site which then results in the links being marked as spam. If you use bad backlinks your site might get removed from search engines which will damage your business. If you do use backlinks it is important that you seek out good backlinks as a part of your complete SEO strategy.

10 SEO Mistakes That Will Kill Your Site’s SEO

There are many mistakes which people can make that result in killing your website. These are often simple and avoidable mistakes which can cripple your chances of optimizing your site. The first mistake is coding. Coding can hurt your SEO if you choose to use difficult coding such as Javascript. Simpler code can offer the same results with less spider issues.

The second mistake often made is the choice of keywords. When people decide upon the keyword phrases they should pick a select few which will then be integrated throughout their site. By focusing on a small group of important keywords you can increase your SEO. If you try to incorporate every keyword which relates to your niche then you will waste all of your time trying to incorporate each word in all of your web content and will lose out on many search engine results.

The third mistake people make is having long and confusing URL’s which cannot be navigated with ease. The best URL will have relevant keywords and only use dynamic characters or a few slashes. The pages and names should be in line with your specific content so that the spiders and visitors can appreciate it.

The fourth mistake made is thinking that title tags do not matter. You cannot get away with only using a single title tag throughout your website. You need to create a unique title tag for each page which will explain what the page is about. These title tags will show up in all search engine results and as such can better convince visitors to click on your website.

The fifth mistake is not watching out for splash pages. It is important not to leave your home page bare. You need to keep it focused. If you do use a splash page you want to ensure that the content contained therein is relevant and has lots of navigation in it so that the search engines will go through your entire site.

The sixth mistake is thinking that all of the search engines are the same. Each search engine has a unique plan and your business might rank better with one search engine than another. The top search engines are Yahoo, MSN, and Google because they can attract local attention to your niche through vertical and visual search engines. The seventh mistake made which can kill your company’s SEO is just trading backlinks instead of getting good backlinks. It is important that you get links from related sites which are of good quality. If you trade backlinks with other webmasters you might not help your SEO rank as much as you think, especially if they are unrelated to your niche.

The eighth mistake is not balancing graphics and text. It can be very detrimental to have underutilized graphics or excess graphics. With a lot of flash or too many images your rank will go down instead of increasing. You need to always have text to back up the images.

The ninth biggest mistake which can adversely affect your SEO is not delivering your promises. Your site should offer everything that you say it offers so that visitors find what they want and expect on your site.

The tenth and final mistake made is thinking that only SEO matters and not paying attention to the other facets of your balanced marketing plan.

3 Steps to Monitor Your Website’s SEO Health

Monitoring the health of your website SEO(search engine optimization) can be done in a few short steps. These steps are all interrelated and made simpler by online tools from locations such as Google.

Step One: Manage Your Keywords:
In order to manage your keywords you need to select a few optimum keywords which are best suited for your niche. It is better to select between one and three main keywords which can be integrated throughout your website content. Keywords rich content is the answer to your blog’s health.  If you use more keywords than that they should be incorporated as secondary keywords. No longer can your website be sustained through keyword stuffing. No, more than ever, it is imperative to your SEO health that you follow a strict rule for keyword integration. Your content needs to be of the highest quality. If your site doesn’t engage the  reader with viable information then search engines will take note and you will receive poor ratings and worse than that, no redership. Your information, big or small, should always be concise and not full of fluff, and easily digested by the reader. Readers want to gain answers to their questions quickly and know that your company can help them. This step goes hand in hand with step two.

Keywords rich content is the answer to your blog’s health.

Step Two: Manage Your Content:
The second step is to manage your content. This means that when you create content you use your main keyword in the title as well as the sub-heading. However the main keyword should be used exactly, not changed even slightly. The keywords should then be tactfully placed in the first sentence of the first paragraph. After this you can monitor the health of your website’s SEO by verifying that any and all content posted on your site integrates the keywords at least once per paragraph in the body of your content. When you reach your conclusion, the keyword needs to be placed once in the conclusion.

If the content you are writing is for another site, such as an article directory, then you can utilize backlinks. The best way to utilize backlinks in this manner is to place the link to a keyword throughout the text, rather than placing the link at the end of the content. This goes hand in hand with the third and final step.

Step One: Manage Your Inbound Links:
The third step is to manage your inbound links. In order to manage your inbound links you need to first verify the current health of your website’s SEO. This can be done using Google Analytical tools or through Open Site Explorer. These sites will show you a pie chart break down of from where your inbound links are coming. It will designate them based on categories and show you percentages. This will also include “no follow” links which are good in terms of generating traffic but bad in terms of advancing your search engine rank. You want to be sure to verify the current state of your SEO health for inbound links before you move on to fix the problem and make the inbound link quality and quantity better.

By tactfully improving your inbound link quality, you will naturally improve the content for your site, where the content is posted, and which keywords are integrated into the content.

The Best way to Manage Inbound Link Quantity and Quality

Making sure that my clients’ websites have their fair share of inbound links is a challenge, but even more of a challenge is monitoring the quality of those links is becoming a task that only a person with 80 fingers can manage. As a business owner and your online presence is important to your business, it is imperative that you manage your inbound link quality and quantity. The problem lies in determining how much time to spend on inbound links. These links come from other sites back to your page. They are referred to as incoming links, back links, inlinks, and inward links. Caring about the quality and quantity of inbound links is important because it is an imperative manner in which your website is found online. Our article Backlinks, Good vs. Evil – The True Breakdown, showcases the good and evil in back links. In order to have your website found, you must rank high on search engines. In order to do this you must utilize SEO which includes inbound links. Inbound links have quickly become one of the biggest indicators of the quality of your website content. As such, inbound links are an important facet of keeping a high rank among search engine results.

This begins with getting links posted on relevant directories. But be cautious of using back-link repositories. Search engines are improving to notice when people are using link brokerage services or spamming their links all over the internet and website owners are being penalized. Those sites which are found to have these spam links receive a low quality rank. The more low-quality ranks you have the lower your site will rate overall.

In order to improve your rank and manage your inbound links you want to make sure that they are relevant links and are engaging. They should be integrated into keywords inside of high quality content rather than merely posted at the end of an article en masse with many other links. The quality of the link should come naturally to your site through compelling service, thus offering a unique service to customers.

You can better manage your inbound links by posting them into quality blogs or presentations upon which people can share or comment. Building high quality inbound links includes links from search engines, links from referring sites, and links from direct traffic. Prior to searching for inbound links you want to determine where your site stands with tools like Open Site Explorer or Site Explorer. You can also utilize Google Analytics to produce a comprehensive view of your inbound link quality over the past six months. You can verify “nofollow” links which are active inbound links which are not noticed by search engines. “nofollow” links will bring traffic to your site when people click on the links but they will not help your search engine rank. These are generally links included in blog comments where the owner of the site has not allowed you to include a link with your comment. This essentially means the owner of the website is not vouching for your link.

You can monitor good inbound links by posting only through good sources. These include things such as writing guest articles for other publications, or writing blog posts. These will both have a brief bio and link to your website. Other good inbound link sources include directories, online news release and article sites, vendors, suppliers, business allies, and sponsorships, charities, and associations. Another great location for inbound links includes social networks.

The Proper Use of Keyword Density in Articles

As a webmaster and writer, I love writing strange analogies. Correlating wine consumption and SEO tactics seem like a far off comparative subject, don’t they?  I think that that my comparison, in this article between those two items of discussion will prove some matching points and you will find it interesting.

It can be said that keyword density and everyday wine consumption can be compared. Some doctors feel that daily red wine consumption can help in the

prevention of heart attacks and it can lower LDL or bad cholesterol. On the other hand, drinking too much red wine can also have detrimental effects as well. This

red wine and keyword-density analogy does apply to the use of keywords density in articles in the world of SEO or Search Engine Optimization. Websites that take Search Engine Optimization very serious will support this analogy. Website page rank has a direct reflection of search engine results and how well they are linked with proper keywords. In order to be successful, the proper use of keywords or keyword phrases that is relevant to the products and services that these websites offer. Therefore, many inexperienced webmasters, that think they know SEO, are

convinced that the more they use the keywords in their articles, the higher the level of SEO will be provided in those particular articles and ultimately delivering better page rank. However, it doesn’t really work that easy. Like the analogy of drinking red wine, if there are too many keywords on the articles, the articles will get receive SERP penalties as they are considered overuse or spam like in nature. Hence, there has to be the proper proportionate use if keyword density on articles that are considered well written articles.  The culminating use of keywords in the proper portion is achieving a balanced density, which means the number of repetitive keyword uses should be balanced with the amount of words in the articles.

Calculations for Keywords vs. Keyword Phrases

The calculation of keyword density and keyword phrases is very similar, in fact.  The main difference lay between humans and software. The thing (or person) who analyzes the relation between keywords and user queries is really a search engine, not a human being. In order to get the proper keyword density, the percentage should not be more than 5% of the total words written using your keywords. Based on the advice of some highly regarded search engine optimization experts, the ideal percentage of keywords density is only 2%-3%. So, if you would like to use keywords, you have to calculate the density by dividing the number of particular repeating keyword with the entire sum of words in the article.   For example if your article has 1000 words and you use a keyword 20 times, that would equal 2% and that is acceptable. If you use a keyword 100 times in that article that would equal 10% and that is way too high and unacceptable.

Keyword phrases are to be considered exactly the same way as keyword density and they are just calculated similarly but using the phrase instead of the actual word.  For example, a “keyword” consisting of multiple terms, e.g. “wide screen monitor” should be considered an entire word in itself. It is the frequency of the phrase “wide screen monitor” within an article that determines the key phrase density.

In conclusion, all you need to know when writing an article just use common sense in how you are conveying the article and, at the same time, use the (key) words as how you would speak them to another person.  Each search engine has its own equation formula to make a standard of density measurement. So, if Google has a certain keyword formula, Yahoo may be different. Most people target the most-used search engine, Google, though.