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Archive 2012 · My report on your SEO
  
 
tobicus
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p.3 #1 · My report on your SEO


Yes, we continue to work on our SEO, and have moved from page 4 to page 2 on our primary keywords, and are bearing down on page 1 : D


Mar 19, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Scott Mosher
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p.3 #2 · My report on your SEO


On a semi related note, is there a way to clear out old information from webmaster tools? A year or so ago I used to have my sports & working work combined onto one blogsite, and I've since split it out into two separate sites. Webmaster tools should be linked to my main wedding/portrait site but still shows that my old sports keywords are relevant to my wedding/portrait site.


Mar 19, 2012 at 08:04 PM
TomHarmon
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p.3 #3 · My report on your SEO


Scott Mosher wrote:
On a semi related note, is there a way to clear out old information from webmaster tools? A year or so ago I used to have my sports & working work combined onto one blogsite, and I've since split it out into two separate sites. Webmaster tools should be linked to my main wedding/portrait site but still shows that my old sports keywords are relevant to my wedding/portrait site.

I'm not sure, but I'll look into it.



Mar 19, 2012 at 10:29 PM
eNoBlog
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p.3 #4 · My report on your SEO


Scott Mosher wrote:
On a semi related note, is there a way to clear out old information from webmaster tools? A year or so ago I used to have my sports & working work combined onto one blogsite, and I've since split it out into two separate sites. Webmaster tools should be linked to my main wedding/portrait site but still shows that my old sports keywords are relevant to my wedding/portrait site.


My site was cached with old stuff for a while, including a month-old warning about my site being "unsafe" (after it got hacked). Submitting an updated sitemap.xml file did the trick. Sit tight for a week or two, though, to let the crawling do its thing.



Mar 19, 2012 at 11:06 PM
Scott Mosher
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p.3 #5 · My report on your SEO


Gotcha. I resubmitted my sitemap about a week ago and I saw that Google crawled it today. I also went through my FTP and deleted a ton of old crap that was way obsolete.


Mar 19, 2012 at 11:11 PM
eNoBlog
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p.3 #6 · My report on your SEO


Scott Mosher wrote:
Gotcha. I resubmitted my sitemap about a week ago and I saw that Google crawled it today. I also went through my FTP and deleted a ton of old crap that was way obsolete.


Isn't spring cleaning a good thing? Just went through my site this weekend. Still have much to tie up (found some broken links which aren't good for Google). I hope you didn't create a bunch of broken links by deleting stuff from your site? I think GWMT will give you a run-down under Diagnostics->Crawl errors



Mar 19, 2012 at 11:23 PM
mavrik
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p.3 #7 · My report on your SEO


I've been talking about getting reindexed on my fb page but if your site gets attacked and you need it re-indexed quickly, post it with some content to G+. Google instantly indexes their own products. I did a test on this and reconfirmed. You can update your site pretty quickly that way and with sitemap submissions on GWMT.

If you create a bunch of broken links by deleting things, make sure you remove the old links. If you use Wordpress, there's a plugin (just called Broken Links I think) that finds those links and helps you edit/remove/update them.

Found it: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/broken-link-checker/ Broken Links Checker.



Mar 19, 2012 at 11:31 PM
Scott Mosher
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p.3 #8 · My report on your SEO


eNoBlog wrote:
Isn't spring cleaning a good thing? Just went through my site this weekend. Still have much to tie up (found some broken links which aren't good for Google). I hope you didn't create a bunch of broken links by deleting stuff from your site? I think GWMT will give you a run-down under Diagnostics->Crawl errors


None of it was showing up in my webmaster tools. I had a couple basic gallery type websites that I did in 2006 when I was just starting. I'll be watching my crawl errors though to see if anything needs to be fixed.



Mar 20, 2012 at 02:04 AM
paparazzinick
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p.3 #9 · My report on your SEO


There is also a plugin you can get that auto forwards broken links and incorrectly typed links to a valid link on your site. Ill check later for it.



Mar 20, 2012 at 12:36 PM
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p.3 #10 · My report on your SEO


Thanks Tom for all the info

I have a question:

If I look at my site in Google webmaster tools it shows that I have 1631 links to my site, but if I check on backlinks checker it shows 383 Backlinks.

What is the difference between the links on webmaster tools and back links?



Mar 21, 2012 at 05:10 AM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



TomHarmon
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p.3 #11 · My report on your SEO


joeydw wrote:
Thanks Tom for all the info

I have a question:

If I look at my site in Google webmaster tools it shows that I have 1631 links to my site, but if I check on backlinks checker it shows 383 Backlinks.

What is the difference between the links on webmaster tools and back links?

A lot places try to hide your total number of backlinks, especially Google, so the other site might be using a different formula to look at your links.



Mar 21, 2012 at 01:51 PM
eNoBlog
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p.3 #12 · My report on your SEO


This topic of backlinks is a squirly one. I know I get a ton of hits from dpreview.com, but Google shows zero backlinks from dpreview.com. OTOH, Flickr links are "nofollow" but I get a ton of backlinks from my participation there. And to add more confusion, I have not participated (signed off years ago, actually) in nikonians.org, and yet, GWMT tells me it is the 2nd highest source of backlinks from me. Maybe a lot of people love me over there and are linking to my Nikon-specific blog entries, but it sounds over the top -- no way anyone over there is linking to my site that much.


Mar 21, 2012 at 04:40 PM
TomHarmon
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p.3 #13 · My report on your SEO


If you participated in a forum where your website url is in your signature, it will show that you have a link from there for every post, but it doesn't mean much because its all from the same forum. And Google hides back links, so they won't always show you the source of all of them.


Mar 21, 2012 at 05:23 PM
eNoBlog
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p.3 #14 · My report on your SEO


Thanks again, Tom. While we're on the general topic of linking, I just went through an exercise yesterday of cleaning up nearly 200 broken internal links. GWMT still shows them as broken, so now I have to wait for it to re-Crawl my site. Any idea of how damaging broken links are to SEO?


Mar 21, 2012 at 05:29 PM
TomHarmon
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p.3 #15 · My report on your SEO


They can be damaging, but not so much that you have to lose sleep over it. You look like you're taking the right steps, and if keep at all the SEO stuff, you'll definitely see improvement.


Mar 21, 2012 at 06:04 PM
Kegan Shattuck
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p.3 #16 · My report on your SEO


Hey Tommy! Last I read, broken links have zero impact on your google rank (links that no longer exist on your page)...I think that was straight from webmaster tools...


Mar 21, 2012 at 06:52 PM
TomHarmon
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p.3 #17 · My report on your SEO


I thought he was talking about internal links on his site that point to pages that are no longer there. But I could be wrong.


Mar 21, 2012 at 08:20 PM
eNoBlog
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p.3 #18 · My report on your SEO


That's right Tom: links that erroneously point to other pages/images on my site that I moved without updating the links, or removed altogether. Fortunately for me, it was mostly just things I moved, so updating the links healed 80% of the problem. How I remember reading this hurts (or could hurt) you with Google is that the Crawler may not efficiently look through your content, so your keywording and relevance may go off the rails a bit or a lot, depending on how widespread the problem.


Mar 22, 2012 at 08:22 PM
TomHarmon
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p.3 #19 · My report on your SEO


eNoBlog wrote:
That's right Tom: links that erroneously point to other pages/images on my site that I moved without updating the links, or removed altogether. Fortunately for me, it was mostly just things I moved, so updating the links healed 80% of the problem. How I remember reading this hurts (or could hurt) you with Google is that the Crawler may not efficiently look through your content, so your keywording and relevance may go off the rails a bit or a lot, depending on how widespread the problem.

Yeah, internal linking is VERY important. It gives Google a web to crawl through. So optimizing very other page is vital as well, and if there is missing links, Google tends to be turned off a bit.



Mar 22, 2012 at 08:52 PM
tjsix
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p.3 #20 · My report on your SEO


I normally don't chime in much around here anymore but I figured I'd offer up some information and touch on a few points in this thread..

First off, Tom, I applaud you for reaching out and offering up help to anyone who might need some direction when it comes to this stuff. SEO in general is somewhat of a grey area with very few things that are clear cut and in black and white. That being said, you have to approach SEO with a plan, not doing so will do you more harm than good a large majority of the time. There have been some good points brought up in this thread but there has also been some things you really are going to want to stay away from, and I'll try to explain why as much as possible.

First and foremost - as has been said already, content is king. Before you spend any time working on your SEO, first focus on the content of your site, and please know this is not a one time thing, this is ongoing and should always be priority number 1. All the SEO links, keywords, descriptions, etc.. will do nothing for you if your content is lacking, irrelevant or stagnant.


Page Titles & Meta Descriptions - If nothing else, spend your time optimizing here first (after content of course), it's the first two things search engines are looking at to decide what's on your page and what category you should be placed in. They should be clear, descriptive and to the point. Utilize keywords here but don't go overboard as it's not going help you, if anything, it'll hurt. Use the meta descriptions as a means to portray exactly what your site is about, and what you would want people to see in search results, as it's one of the main things Google uses in their snippets. You should write clear and description titles and descriptions for each unique page, which accurately describes the content of that page.

Keywords - You should initially only pick a few keywords to focus on, and Before you do that, you should be analyzing those keywords for their popularity and overall searches. Only pick keywords that are relevant, and actually being searched for.

Homepage SEO text - Putting blocks of text littered with keywords on your homepage specifically for SEO worked in the past, it now does very little anymore in terms of SEO and since many people try to throw as much as they can into a few sentences, it's going to do more harm than good. The main reason this has a negative effect when done this way is because it's not organic, and the search engines know this. It makes matters worse if this is the only thing on the page other than a single image or slideshow. Text on your landing/homepage should be simple and to the point, don't use keywords every other word that are bolded or in larger fonts (this does not help, <b> or <strong> tags are not viewed any differently by search engines, and haven't been for some time), only provide relevant information and links to other relevant information within your site. Remember, the search engines are looking at your site as a whole and gauging many different metrics, keep things consistent and natural throughout. The second reason this can hurt is now becoming even more important, which is experience and engagement. People don't like ugly websites, or a bad experience when they go to a site. If its bad, they leave, this is becoming a larger factor in the search engines rankings, large bounce rates and lack of engagement (people reading text, clicking links, navigating through the site etc.) is starting to play a larger role. Adding unsightly blocks of text diminishes your visitors experience and can add to these bounce rates..

Backlinks - Links are important.. BUT you need to be careful here, the very last thing you want to do is go from having 1 or 2 links to your site, to having a 100 in a short period of time, anything more than an absolute max of 10% increase in a short time frame (typically monthly) will hurt you, this is well documented. Second, the source of the link has alot to do with it's effectiveness, 1 link from CNN or similar site bears much more weight than 50 from Joe the blogger, who gets maybe 100 unique visitors a month. This also applies to the type of site is linking to you, if it's not relevant to your site, it's really not going to help you much.

Another factor that is being weighed more and more is social engagement, i.e. are people sharing your content on social media? Do those people have a trusted reputation? You should be encouraging social interaction, provide means for people to share posts/content on twitter/fb/pinterest


Repetitive content - Do not intentionally put duplicate content on pages of your site, this is bad and your search results will be punished for it. A common occurence of this is people put that same ugly SEO text they had on their homepage, throughout their site.

Now, some of you may say, hey I've done some of this stuff and it's helped! That's very possible, but you have to put that into context, if you never optimized your site before, and then suddenly started implementing keywords, descriptions and SEO text to your site, of course the search engines are going to take notice, they now have content to gauge things on. But this will only take you so far, and then you'll plateau out..

To wrap up, I want to hit back on the content topic again, focus on relevant content first, write content rich pages and blog posts which are frequently updated. This is going to help more than anything. Things are moving in such a way that all of this extra work could very well start hurting you, Matt Cutts (Google's SEO head guy) announced at SXSW that they will start penalizing for 'Over Optimization', basically in a nutshell, they are starting to compare sites and their focus on SEO, if a site is too far away from the norm, meaning they have lots more keywords, links etc than the rest of the sites, they will be penalized. In his words it's meant to level the playing field. Here is an article with the audio attached.

Some other resources worth checking out:
http://searchengineland.com/seotable - SEO Ranking factors
http://www.youtube.com/user/GoogleWebmasterHelp?feature=watch - Google's webmaster Youtube channel
http://www.markflavinblog.com/how-to-use-seo-to-ruin-your-own-online-business/ - Some SEO don'ts
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/13/business/13search.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&adxnnlx=1332548192-52%20NFOAfv59vOtCtsGOQPQ - Interesting article in the NY Times about Black hat SEO



Mar 24, 2012 at 01:27 AM
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