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52 seo-tips Document Transcript

  • 1. 52 SEO Tips - Jan-Dec 2007presented by:Big Oak SEOhttp://www.bigoakinc.comcontact@bigoakinc.com
  • 2. A word from the authorThis all started during Christmas of 2006 while I was home on vacation. My brain, being boredfrom all the downtime a vacation provides, began thinking of ways to get other sites to link tomy SEO company website BigOakInc.com. Instead of coming up with a EUREKA solution, Istarted writing some on the Big Oak SEO blog. Then it hit me that I should write one SEO tipper week for an entire year. I mean, how hard could that possibly be? Famous last words.So, over the year spanning January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2007, I endeavored to createtips that were based on Big Oak’s experiences in SEO. I also provided references when I could tosupport the tips offered and presented the information in a way that would be easy for the SEOdo-it-yourselfer to follow.This document contains all SEO tips written as blog posts for the year 2007. Rather than makethis an incomplete volume and delete some of the out-of-date tips, I felt that all the tips should beincluded. I do want to share the tips that are somewhat obsolete:• How to Build Links with Flickr - SEO Tip Week 33 (Flickr links arent as helpful forSEO anymore, try Zooomr.com or read another post we wrote on how to use Flickr.)• Google’s Supplemental Results - SEO Tip Week 29 (Google no longer labelssupplemental results.)• Find Competitor Backlinks with MSN Live - SEO Tip Week 46 (MSN has stoppedshowing backlink information, but this may return.)In the end, the most important nuggets I take from this experience aside from a sense ofaccomplishment are that:1. Coming up 52 unique, robust, non-fluffed pieces of SEO advice is a difficult task.2. Technology has changed, but the core best SEO practices remain the same.3. Even those like myself that know a great deal when it comes to SEO can still learn a greatdeal when it comes to SEO.ThanksDue to the constraints for publishing blog posts into a pdf, I add to erase the author credit for twovery intelligent people who assisted me writing these SEO tips: Chris Alexander and WillPaoletto. Chris wrote the following tips:• When to Use a 301 vs. 302 Redirect - SEO Tip Week 35• Google’s Supplemental Results - SEO Tip Week 29• Underscores vs. Dashes - SEO Tip Week 24• Control What Gets Indexed - SEO Tip Week 19As you can see, Chris wrote the more technical posts and left the easy tactics to me.
  • 3. Will helped me at week 47, as I was officially burning out at that time, and wrote the followingposted tip.• The Dangers of Buying Links Through a Service - SEO Tip Week 47If you find any of the tips helpful, please send us an email at contact@bigoakinc.com or betteryet, come by and visit our blog: http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/.If you need help with your own SEO efforts, we are a full-service SEO company specializing inorganic or natural search results. You can learn more about Big Oak SEO athttp://www.bigoakinc.com or call us at 1-804-741-6776. Feel free to ask to speak with me.Thanks,Shell HarrisPresident, Big Oak SEOhttp://www.bigoakinc.com
  • 4. Contents1 2007 71.1 January . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71.1.1 52 SEO Tips for One Year (2007-01-01 15:27) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71.1.2 Create A Blog - SEO Tip Week 1 (2007-01-05 12:01) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71.1.3 Keyword Research Tools - SEO Tip Week 2 (2007-01-12 02:00) . . . . . . . . . . . 81.1.4 Use the META Description Tag - SEO Tip Week 3 (2007-01-19 02:32) . . . . . . . 91.1.5 Deep Linking - SEO Tip Week 4 (2007-01-26 02:37) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101.2 February . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111.2.1 Internal Linking - SEO Tip Week 5 (2007-02-02 02:38) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111.2.2 Create a Website Sitemap - SEO Tip Week 6 (2007-02-09 02:45) . . . . . . . . . . 121.2.3 Duplicate Content & URL Canonicalization - SEO Tip Week 7 (2007-02-16 08:35) 131.2.4 Social Bookmarking - SEO Tip Week 8 (2007-02-23 01:00) . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141.3 March . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 181.3.1 Link to Your Home Page Correctly - SEO Tip Week 9 (2007-03-02 06:29) . . . . . 181.3.2 Seven “Secrets― to SEO Success - SEO Tip Week 10 (2007-03-07 18:08) . . . 191.3.3 Get to Know Google Services - SEO Tip Week 11 (2007-03-16 09:07) . . . . . . . 201.3.4 Internet Marketing with Articles - SEO Tip Week 12 (2007-03-22 06:50) . . . . . 231.3.5 Graphic Headlines Can Work for SEO - SEO Tip Week 13 (2007-03-30 07:30) . . 261.4 April . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 281.4.1 Every Web Page Should Be Unique - SEO Tip Week 14 (2007-04-06 06:23) . . . . 281.4.2 Register Your Domain for More Than One Year - SEO Tip Week 15(2007-04-13 07:27) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 301.4.3 Submit Press Releases - SEO Tip Week 16 (2007-04-20 06:41) . . . . . . . . . . . 311.4.4 SEO and Flash - SEO Tip Week 17 (2007-04-27 07:08) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 321.5 May . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 331.5.1 Search Engine & Directory Submissions - SEO Tip Week 18 (2007-05-04 14:37) . 331.5.2 Control What Gets Indexed - SEO Tip Week 19 (2007-05-11 13:47) . . . . . . . . 35c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 3
  • 5. BlogBook CONTENTS1.5.3 SEO for Interior Webpages - SEO Tip Week 20 (2007-05-18 13:45) . . . . . . . . . 371.5.4 Finding the Perfect Link - SEO Tip Week 21 (2007-05-25 07:04) . . . . . . . . . . 391.6 June . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 401.6.1 Keep Fresh Content on Your Homepage - SEO Tip Week 22 (2007-06-01 20:15) . 401.6.2 Keep Current on SEO Techniques - SEO Tip Week 23 (2007-06-09 22:09) . . . . . 411.6.3 Underscores vs. Dashes - SEO Tip Week 24 (2007-06-15 15:58) . . . . . . . . . . . 431.6.4 SEO Titles, Using the Title Tag - SEO Tip Week 25 (2007-06-22 05:35) . . . . . . 451.6.5 Click Here For More Information - Bad Text Links - SEO Tip Week 26(2007-06-29 19:28) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 471.7 July . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 491.7.1 Flat Site Architecture is SEO-Friendly - SEO Tip 27 (2007-07-06 11:56) . . . . . . 491.7.2 Research Your Competition with Yahoo Site Explorer - SEO Tip Week 28(2007-07-13 09:55) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 501.7.3 Google’s Supplemental Results - SEO Tip Week 29 (2007-07-20 18:19) . . . . . 521.7.4 How to Find Relevant Links - SEO Tip Week 30 (2007-07-27 08:02) . . . . . . . . 531.8 August . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 551.8.1 How to Improve Local Search Results - SEO Tip Week 31 (2007-08-03 11:42) . . . 551.8.2 Google Supplemental Index Label Disappears (2007-08-09 15:40) . . . . . . . . . . 571.8.3 Squidoo for Traffic & Link Building - SEO Tip Week 32 (2007-08-12 17:19) . . . . 581.8.4 How to Build Links with Flickr - SEO Tip Week 33 (2007-08-19 21:45) . . . . . . 631.8.5 Reviews Can Improve Your Local Search Rankings - SEO Tip Week 34(2007-08-25 20:12) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 641.9 September . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 661.9.1 When to Use a 301 vs. 302 Redirect - SEO Tip Week 35 (2007-09-02 09:51) . . . 661.9.2 SEO Toolkit: Everyday SEO Tools - SEO Tip Week 36 (2007-09-09 17:13) . . . . 681.9.3 How to Use Keywords - SEO Tip Week 37 (2007-09-17 07:25) . . . . . . . . . . . 691.9.4 PRWEb vs. PRNewswire Press Release Service for SEO - SEO Tip Week 38(2007-09-25 18:31) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 711.10 October . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 721.10.1 Google Alerts for Link Building - SEO Tip Week 39 (2007-10-02 22:29) . . . . . . 721.10.2 Unique Product Descriptions - SEO Tip Week 40 (2007-10-08 12:11) . . . . . . . 741.10.3 Build Links with Blogging - SEO Tip Week 41 (2007-10-18 12:33) . . . . . . . . . 751.10.4 Avoid Blinding the Search Engine Spiders - SEO Tip Week 42 (2007-10-22 13:11) 761.10.5 YouTube or Self Hosting Videos - SEO Tips Week 43 (2007-10-29 14:32) . . . . . 761.11 November . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 771.11.1 Finding Links with High PageRank - SEO Tip Week 44 (2007-11-02 16:00) . . . . 774 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 6. CONTENTS BlogBook1.11.2 Images Provide SEO Traffic - SEO Tip Week 45 (2007-11-11 23:33) . . . . . . . . 781.11.3 Find Competitor Backlinks with MSN Live - SEO Tip Week 46 (2007-11-20 11:30) 791.11.4 The Dangers of Buying Links Through a Service - SEO Tip Week 47(2007-11-28 16:01) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 801.12 December . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 811.12.1 Wordpress Plugins Help Google Index Your Blog - SEO Tip 48 (2007-12-05 00:14) 811.12.2 Digg-ing Links by Commenting Socially Responsibly - SEO Tip Week 49(2007-12-11 15:37) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 831.12.3 Go Green, Recyle Old Links - SEO Tip 50 (2007-12-14 20:50) . . . . . . . . . . . 841.12.4 Nofollow Helps Internal Linking and Conversions - SEO Tip 51 (2007-12-20 15:45) 851.12.5 Create an Wonderful Super Awesome Resource Directory - SEO Tip 52(2007-12-28 15:11) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 5
  • 7. BlogBook CONTENTS6 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 8. Chapter 120071.1 January1.1.1 52 SEO Tips for One Year (2007-01-01 15:27)We’ve made a commitment in January, 2007 that we would post one tip every week. We’ve read many tipsmyself and I’ve often been surprised at the number of low quality search engine optimization tips that arefloating around. So rather than list tips that are uninspired have have no examples to back them up, wehave decided to create SEO tips that are meaningful and we have actually used. You will see SEO strategiesthat we employ successfully with many of our clients and we’ll even let you in on the behind the scenes workfrom time to time. And we will try to do it once a week. So please forgive us if we are late occassionaly,remember we are running a SEO company in our spare time. ;-)Feel free to send in any suggestions, questions or encouragement as we do this for one year!Update: So far so good, although we have been late a few times, the SEO tip has always been up byMonday. We try to post on Fridays.nsilva (2007-08-30 16:20:25)I’ve just found this blog and I have to say that I’m really impressed, I really like the compilation of tips you havecollected, I guess you have a new returning visitor to your blog. Thanks for the outstanding informationShell Harris (2007-08-30 16:44:37)Thanks for the compliment and welcome aboard. We try to keep the blog full of good advice and not a rehash of oldtips. ..at least for one year. ;-)Alex Vitti (2008-01-20 22:59:53)Just love your blog,every time im getting something new Thanks a lot1.1.2 Create A Blog - SEO Tip Week 1 (2007-01-05 12:01)[1] Blogs can be helpful if correctly used. But, blogs will not guarantee high rankings.Blogs provide aneasy way to add new and hopefully unique content. Search engines love new content and they love originalc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 7
  • 9. BlogBook 1.1. Januarycontent even more. Blogs are a great way of adding new information to your site because if search enginesknow a site is adding new articles or posts on a continual and frequent basis, they will come around moreoften to index the site. You can add a blog internally to your site directly (http://www.sitename.com/blog)or as an external site (http://sitename.blogspot.com).Think of your blog as a way to reach potential clients on a more informal basis. Your blog will also al-low you to tap into ”lower hanging fruit” keyphrases that you use in your posts. You will be surprised at thekeyphrases typed in the search engines that will bring users to your blog. It may even inspire a new Internetmarketing initiative.I recommend [2]Wordpress as the blogging tool of choice. Easy to set up, very powerful with the abilityto add plungins and it has a great support network.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.wordpress.com/Peter Carr (2007-01-31 20:06:51)Please keep up the tips.. it’s on ly the 31st of january but i’m already hooked. is there any way to get these tipsemailed each week?Shell Harris (2007-02-01 18:05:50)Sorry, but at this time (2/1/07) we are hosting on Windows servers and the Wordpress feeds are working correctlywith the server as well as some other functionality. We are working on it, but not sure when or if it will get correctedso we can add a subscription to the site. You can subscribe to our [1]SEO newsletter which has additional information.Otherwise you’ll have to visit us now and again for the next seo tip. If there are any requests I’ll take them.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/seo-newsletter.phpShell Harris (2007-02-06 12:41:49)You can now subscribe to our feed through feedburner at [1]http://feeds.feedburner.com/BigOakSeoBlog or click thelink in the top right of this page. You can also register for the blog and become a direct subscriber by clicking[2]Register or click the link in the top right.1. http://feeds.feedburner.com/BigOakSeoBlog2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-login.php?action=registerPeter Carr (2007-04-02 16:23:57)Thanks... I’ve signed on! keep up the good work!Seo Tips (2008-01-24 04:17:41)Peter Carr, Nice rankings for your chiro practice. Keep it up1.1.3 Keyword Research Tools - SEO Tip Week 2 (2007-01-12 02:00)[1] In hind sight, I should have put this [2]SEO Tip first but better late than never. You must dokeyword research before you start optimizing your site, that much is obvious, but what tools should you use?There are two excellent keyword research tools that I can recommend as professional tools. They are[3]Wordtracker and [4]Keyword Discovery. Both are great and both are different. At Big Oak we startedwith Wordtracker and move over to Keyword Discovery after a year or so. We felt KD had an easier interface8 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 10. 1.1. January BlogBookand liked they way it worked us. This is not to say Wordtracker didn’t do a fine job for us, because it did.It was really just a matter of preference. You may find Wordtracker better for your method of research.If you are just getting into the game you may want to try something else that is free to do your initialresearch. You can use [5]Overture’s keyword search tool, but it is limited to one month of keyword searchesand often isn’t working because too many people are trying to use it. You’ll want to move to the pay-for-useprograms quickly if you are truly serious.In any case, do not overlook this important step and don’t assume you know how people are searchingfor your product or service. If you optimize a site with the wrong keywords you may end up with a highranking site but won’t convert your traffic! Correctly identifying the best keywords and search terms usinga keyword search tool will help your odds of success and give you a fighting chance to target prospects whoare more likely to turn into clients.My colleague, Holly Rodriguez has written about [6]choosing keyword research tools on her [7]SEO copy-writing blog, [8]SEOScribe.com. Check it out if you would like more information.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://www.wordtracker.com/4. http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/5. http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/6. http://www.seoscribe.com/?p=187. http://www.seoscribe.com/8. http://www.seoscribe.com/1.1.4 Use the META Description Tag - SEO Tip Week 3 (2007-01-19 02:32)[1] All web sites should use the META description tag. If you have too many pages to add it to, at leastput it on your home page and any core pages that bring in search result traffic. Google will use the METAdescription you place on your site if the user searched for a keyword that exists in the META description.Google is giving us some measure of control.How best to use this you may ask? You need to think like a radio advertising writer. What can yousay in one brief sentence that will entice a user to click your link rather than the one above or below. A littlesensationalism never hurt.A brand message can help or you can put your phone number in the META description. Think out ofthe box; how about a offer a discount or advertise a sale. Be careful though, if you put a sale message andwhen the sale ends your message might still display until Google updates your site listing. You don’t wantyour text in the search results still announcing a sale that is over. Ultimately you should tell searchers yourunique selling proposition.Remember that your META description will only show if the search term is in the META description.While this can be tricky, it can be done with some forethought. You can do this for all of your targetedpages and have dozens of marketing messages.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 9
  • 11. BlogBook 1.1. January1.1.5 Deep Linking - SEO Tip Week 4 (2007-01-26 02:37)[1] While linking is key to success in the SEO game, deep linking is what will set you apart from yourcompetitors.Be sure to acquire links to all your important pages, not just your home page. It looks odd to the searchengines when they notice so many links all pointing to your home page - it isn’t natural. Besides you wantvisitors coming to the page that will most likely convert them from a visitor to a customer and usually thehome page isn’t the best page to accomplish this.You will have the added benefit of having two pages show in the rankings which always attracts more atten-tion and aids your click through rates. Here is an [2]example. Notice how Big Oak is the shown in the firsttwo listings and the indented listing is more targeted on the search term ”seo richmond”. Here is a [3]screenshot in case the link no longer shows the same results.Deep linking also alerts the search engines to the fact that you probably have good, targeted content ifpeople are linking to your interior or sub-pages. It gives your site a vote of confidence to the search enginesto have links pointing throughout your site. If all your links come to your home page it might give theimpression your site has little value or its rankings are being inflated unnaturally.While it is tempting to concentrate links to your home page, you will have many more visitors if you spreadthe links around. Linking to sub-pages will help those pages rank well, giving your visitors a better chanceon finding what they were looking for with one click.Find a new [4]SEO Tip Every Friday.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=Ab4&q=seo+richmond&btnG=Search3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/images/deep-link-results.gif4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/David Taboada (2007-01-26 16:12:54)I understand that Digg and the other social bookmarking services people use help with deep linking, so I assumethis is becoming an important SEO issue. So I would like to ask if you think these services will follow Wikipedia’sNOFOLLOW policy? And also, if you know of research on the behaviour of social bookmarking?Shell (2007-01-26 18:20:48)David, It would seem this is the next step. After all, the only people who would care about such a move are SEOcompanies. On the other hand ”real” links are used to establish true popularity and Digg (and other social bookmark-ing) are a perfect indicator. It would be a shame if this happens. Of course, most people won’t realize the nofollowwas put into effect and still spam the Diggs of the world, just as I am sure wikopedia will continue to receive spameven though the nofollow is in effect. If I were a betting man I would say this will happen this year and all socialbookmarking sites will follow suit. Too bad, but it seems unethical SEO companies have coruppted another usefultool on the web.10 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 12. 1.2. February BlogBook1.2 February1.2.1 Internal Linking - SEO Tip Week 5 (2007-02-02 02:38)[1] As with most [2]SEO tips, this one is simple, overlooked and easy to do. Your site’s navigation isan important part when providing a pleasant user experience and it can be beneficial in aiding your SEOefforts. Even important is how you handle your internal linking strategy, or your body text links.Repeat after me: ”I must include internal links within my content.” This is the very foundation for Internet:hyperlinking text to provide more information about the linked text. Not only is it crucial for SEO it justmakes good sense.For example, let’s take a look at this page on our client’s site, [3]Agee Woodworks. Within the copy ofthis web page are a number of keyword phrases that link to other pages within their site. Some of theseinternal linking phrases include ”custom fireplace mantel” and ”fireplace shelf”. This is simple and clever wayto increase the link popularity of other pages within the site. A text link from the home page is deliveringPageRank to internal pages with a targeted keyword phrase. This helps both pages. The only links you cancontrol are the links on your own site, so use them to your best advantage.Another example, [4]Grote Consulting Services Page, shows how internal linking can guide you throughthe site and provide a lift for the link destination pages. One of the terms linking on this page is ”per-formance appraisal systems” and when I [5]search in Google for that term it shows a first page listing forthe link destination page ([6]http://www.groteconsulting.com/services/performance-apprai sal/index.asp).While other factors clearly play a role, don’t discount the helpfulness of an internal link especially when itis one of the few things you have total control over.Fortunately, for you, very few sites are aware of the importance of internal linking. By using this [7]SEOstrategy you help the search engines index more of your site and more importantly those internal links willcontribute to higher rankings because of the keyword-rich anchor text that is being used.Don’t ignore internal linking; use it and watch your own rankings increase.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://www.ageewoodworks.com/4. http://www.groteconsulting.com/services/index.asp5. http://www.google.com/search?q=performance++appraisal+systems6. http://www.groteconsulting.com/services/performance-appraisal/index.asp7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/seo-strategies/Shell Harris (2007-02-25 13:32:56)I took a look at your Booster Page article and I totally agree with your hypothesis and I can guarantee you are goingto find successful results. In fact, I think any quality SEO company does this as part of the optimization process oras part of the monthly service they provide. Since this is a strategy you are using in your seo work I would say youare ahead of the game and understand the right way to do things. Good SEO is usually a large dose of common sensewith the research to back it up. Well done!Industrial Search Engine Marketing (2007-02-23 16:04:56)Great post. We’ve recently found another element of strategy to inject into the creation of an internal linking structure,having to do with keyword weight and visibiltiy variance between [1]Booster Pages and destination pages. Thoughts?c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 11
  • 13. BlogBook 1.2. February1. http://www.industrialsearchenginemarketing.com/blog/2007/02/22/building-an-internal-linking-structure-with-booster-pages/1.2.2 Create a Website Sitemap - SEO Tip Week 6 (2007-02-09 02:45)[1] Some SEO tips can be hard to explain, but this is one of the few that is relatively easy to do andcan be done manually with small or large sites. Create a sitemap of your website. There are a few goodreasons to do this.It allows easier indexing of your site by the search engines.In other words, it helps the search engines find all the pages on your site. Some websites only have a few oftheir pages in the search engines and this can be due to poor linking, sparse navigation or a host of otherreasons. A sure-fire cure is to have a sitemap links to all of the major sections of your website. If you havea small website, linking to all the pages is a good idea. Web-crawlers will thank you for making their busylives easier.It provides PageRank or link popularity to all pages it links to.If you read about SEO then you have read how important it is to have high-quality links pointing to yoursite from other sites. While this is true, don’t underestimate your own [2]internal links (as seen in [3]lastweek’s SEO tip) pointing to your own pages. A sitemap can become another source of quality links withdescriptive text for your own pages.Sitemaps help with usability and site navigation.You website users can now access any important page on the site with only two clicks. This allows for deeplynested pages to be found easier and not just by the search engine spiders but by people visiting your site.Making navigation easier by including a sitemap is just good business sense as well as SEO sense.Examples of good sitemaps• Even if you have a large site, using a sitemap to provide quick access to major areas and importantpages is very helpful. The [4]Apple sitemap is a good example of this.• A more detailed 4-column [5]sitemap by A.M.Best• Small sites, like Grote Consulting, only need [6]small sitemaps• Organization and categorization is crucial for an [7]ecommerce sitemap as created by Danforth Diamond• Sometimes sitemaps can be a more integral part of the site. Look at this ”[8]footer sitemap” by AgeeWoodworksDo I really need a sitemap?Sitemaps can be viewed as a luxury, but for new sites they are critical. It can take the search engines monthsto crawl your new site and they may never crawl the entire site. Adding a sitemap can speed this processup. It also helps when adding new pages or sections, the search engines have easy access to all pages throughyou sitemapDon’t overlook this simple step in your search engine optimization success.12 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 14. 1.2. February BlogBook1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internal-linking-seo-tip-week-5/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internal-linking-seo-tip-week-5/4. http://www.apple.com/find/sitemap.html5. http://www.ambest.com/about/sitemap.html6. http://www.groteconsulting.com/site-map.asp7. http://www.danforthdiamond.com/company_information/site_map.htm8. http://www.ageewoodworks.com/David (2007-07-06 15:43:19)Does anyone know if sitemaps help Blogs? Do all posting pages get indexed?Arthur (2007-05-01 08:10:49)If you have any problems to create XML sitemap files for your sites or to notify search engines about updated sitemapfiles, try [1]Sitemap Writer Pro. It is a powerful tool that helps you to create and keep up-to-date sitemaps for yourwebsites. Sitemap Writer Pro has [2]new tools - FTP manager for uploading sitemaps, search engine [3]notificationtool (now supports Ask.com and MSN.com), site [4]crawler for adding an URLs into the sitemap and YahooIndex viewer.1. http://www.sitemapwriter.com/2. http://www.sitemapwriter.com/onlinedocumentation.php#tools3. http://www.sitemapwriter.com/notify.php4. http://www.sitemapwriter.com/onlinedocumentation.php#crawler1.2.3 Duplicate Content & URL Canonicalization - SEO Tip Week 7 (2007-02-16 08:35)Before we get into this week’s tip, let me provide a definition for the term [1]Canonicalization.”It is the process of converting data that has more than one possible representation into a”standard” canonical representation.”For SEO purposes this means it creates a definitive and unique page to represent more than one possiblepage on your site. You want to avoid duplicate pages on your site.Sometimes duplicate content is a result of two pages sharing the same information in two different files.Sometimes you have duplicate content because of the technology causing two different urls point to the samepage. Both of these problems have simple solutions. It is important to correct this because search engineswant to show only unique web pages and text.If your site has multiple pages with the same content possibly through a Content Management System(CMS) or through duplicate navigation, or because it actually exists in multiple versions, you are could behurting your search engine ranking results. We all know how important linking is to any SEO campaign andif links pointing to different urls of the same information your link value will be diluted because 2 incominglinks may point to one version and 3 links to another. It would be much better for all 5 links to point to oneurl.301 Re-Direct to the RescueThe solution is to take any current duplicate pages and use a [2]301 re-direct to point all versions to a single,c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 13
  • 15. BlogBook 1.2. February”canonical” version of the content or web page.Most often this problem can be found on a site’s homepage. For example: Search engines view yourhome page as having more than one version. How? Take a look at the following urls. All point to thesame page, but to the search engines they are different: http://www.yoursite.com, http://yoursite.com,http://yoursite.com/index.html and http://www.yoursite.com/index.html. The search engines may find upto four home pages that have the same content.While this may not cause your site to be unranked it is certainly not helping and can easily cause poorrankings. That is a shame for something that is so easily corrected. Most often this is caused by links point-ing to different versions of your site. You can’t change all the links coming into your site, but you can use the301 re-direct to solve this by pointing all versions of your home page to the full url (http://www.url.com).You can read more on how this is accomplished on our [3]301 re-direct blog post.1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canonicalization2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-to-do-a-301-redirect/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-to-do-a-301-redirect/Shell Harris (2007-02-22 13:34:14)Sam, You should contact your host to see if they can make the changes for you, but you can control it by accessingfiles such as .htaccess on your server, if you are hosting on a Unix system. Your host is a good place to start if youare unfamiliar with the inner workings of your server set up. The different urls should show the same information,after all it is showing the ”default page” that is identified by the server. Usually this is an index.html or default.htmlpage. The extensions can be different, but you get the picture. So there shouldn’t be any worry of different pagesshowing up. Finally you can tell Google which version you want to show up. You have to sign up for webmasteraccount and verify that you are the owner of the site, but ther are other nice features provided by Google’s webmastertools to make it worth your while, besides telling them what your preferred domain should be. You can sign uphere [1]http://www.google.com/webmasters/ I agree they should be directed by default, but alas that isn’t the wayit works.1. http://www.google.com/webmasters/sam (2007-02-22 13:07:35)awesome tip! I think this has caused me some problems which I will now fix. It seems like this is somethingthat should happen automatically somehow. Are there hosts that do this by default? Are there ways thathttp://www.samwilson3d.com and http://samwilson3d.com could even show 2 different pages? If why would youwant this and if not why are they not redirected by default?Seo (2008-01-17 13:48:38)I haven’t experienced any problem or rankings drop when using www and non-www version of a site at the same time.Or some link pointing to index.html instead of root. But is always better to add those lines of code in .htaccess file ifyou can do it. And I saw once 2 different sites on www.domain.com and domain.com. I think they were hosted on 2servers and 2 different DNS used for each one. Kinda funny for me..:D1.2.4 Social Bookmarking - SEO Tip Week 8 (2007-02-23 01:00)[1] What is Social Bookmarking?Social bookmarking involves saving bookmarks (web addresses) to a public Web site such as Digg orDel.icio.us so you can access these bookmarks from any computer connected to the web. Your favoritebookmarks are also available for others to view and follow as well, hence the social aspect. If you wish to14 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 16. 1.2. February BlogBookcreate your own social bookmarks, you must register with a social bookmarking site (we have many listedbelow). No you are able to store bookmarks, tag your bookmarks, and share with anyone interested in yourbookmarks.Hopefully you can see the value and power of social bookmarks. You can think of it as viral or guer-rilla marketing in a way. It can be a powerful grassroots method of marketing your site. Be careful though,like everything else on the web you can spam these sites and make your list of bookmarks appear unappealingor an obvious marketing ploy which will net you very little.Keep it honestBookmark sites you generally would like to share or feel are valuable, which of course can contain bookmarkedweb addresses of your own site. If enough people agree with the value of a bookmark you have placed theywill bookmark it to and as the popularity grows your site traffic will grow.Don’t abuse this by submitting every page of your site, try to be judicious and think about what pagesof your site may be helpful and of interest to other web surfers.All things must endAt some point you will reach a place where you are no longer drawing significant traffic from your olderbookmarks, but that’s okay. Your social bookmark page should be included in the search engine’s cachedsites and they are following your links like any normal web user. In fact, you have created an external linkto your site that should be using useful keyword text in the link. The real beauty of this is the fact thatothers are also providing free one-way links from their own social bookmark pages. So even after the trafficfrom the bookmarks slow you have the added benefit of a grass roots linking campaign providing solid linksto your site, increasing your site’s ranking in the search engines.While you don’t want to base your SEO campaign on this one technique it should be in your SEO tool-box of tasks.A Good Start for Social Bookmarking WebsitesHere are some of the better social bookmarking websites. It wouldn’t be feasible to become a member of allof these but choosing a few couldn’t hurt. I have listed them in order of their Alexa ranking, which suppliessome measure of popularity that should be taken with a grain of salt the size of Rhode Island. In any casehere are some of the more popular social bookmarking sites:1. [2]Digg2. [3]Del.icio.us3. [4]StumbleUpon4. [5]Reddit5. [6]Squidoo6. [7]Furl7. [8]BlinkList8. [9]Blogmarks.net9. [10]Ma.gnoliac 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 15
  • 17. BlogBook 1.2. February10. [11]Simpy11. [12]Spurl12. [13]BlinkBits13. [14][15]Shadows14. [16]Raw Sugar15. [17]Yahoo MyWebWould you add any others? Do you have a social bookmarking favorite, please send us a comment and shareit.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.digg.com/3. http://del.icio.us/4. http://www.stumbleupon.com/5. http://www.reddit.com/6. http://www.squidoo.com/7. http://www.furl.net/8. http://www.blinklist.com/9. http://www.blogmarks.net/10. http://ma.gnolia.com/11. http://www.simpy.com/12. http://www.spurl.net/13. http://www.blinkbits.com/14. http://www.blinklist.com/15. http://www.shadows.com/16. http://www.rawsugar.com/17. http://myweb.yahoo.com/Michael (2007-02-25 02:11:59)Thanks for providing such a useful list.Justyna (2007-02-23 12:47:35)Yep there is another one not listed yet: www.playtxt.net Itâ⠬⠢s a location based social network- really fun,doesnâ⠬⠢t sent you any rubbish and user friendly. JustynaJennifer (2007-03-21 18:47:47)Thanks for the list! This is exactly what I was looking for.Steve Waganer (2007-02-28 06:43:53)i read it and i find it good. Thanks for thatShell Harris (2007-02-23 12:56:08)Justyna, I wasn’t sure if this was a spam comment but I checked it out and it is a social bookmark site. While itmay not be one of the best out there, it does have the distinction of being a bookmarking site created for your mobiledevice. Not sure how well it will work, but it is an interesting concept. Thanks for the comment.16 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 18. 1.2. February BlogBookCriminal Lawyer Phoenix (2007-10-18 14:30:41)Good article. It used to be extremely difficult to get links. Before Google started tracking how one got links it wasjust a matter of buying links... The good old days. Now with social bookmarking sites one can get not only links buttraffic. This stuff is so cool!Chicago cleaning service (2007-11-05 16:13:50)Agree - good article , Is there any software you can recommend or bookmarking script?Shell Harris (2007-11-05 19:00:18)We have used bookmarking application called [1]Bookmarking Demon. It has been a solid program, but use it withrestraint.1. http://www.bookmarkingdemon.com/Phil (2008-01-31 14:38:38)Excellent Google ranking for this information. Social Bookmarking plus Blogging equals good search engine optimiza-tion techniques. Your position in Google proves one of them works... Thanks for the help.Gel Nails St George (2008-02-23 00:40:50)I would love someone to point me in the right direction on social bookmarking and how it helps SEO. I appreciatethis overview you have created, but would love to learn more. Thanks all!Maggie (2008-02-24 16:27:23)Thanks for the info - very helpful. Has any one used Submit Edge to set up Social Bookmarks? I am consideringusing them but what they offer seems too good to be true.... 250 Social Bookmarking for US $65. thanks.Levi Page (2008-02-25 15:56:52)Do you feel having outbound links to every one of these bookmarking sites hurts you seo? All of them seem to workbased off of URLs going directly to ”their” site. Should people hide these with JavaScript?, because it would appearthat this would make the links reciprical in nature and not one way links. Is there an effective way to hide links withJavaScript? Although... I guess you could technically use nofollow.Online marketing agency (2008-02-27 12:37:27)I have been using some of those sites for SEO purpose and it has brought us some good traffic!Shell Harris (2008-02-27 17:18:41)Social bookmarking has limited appeal for the the SEO consultant. We don’t count on it to increase site rankingsdirectly, but indirectly it can increase awareness which may eventually provide additional natural linking.International Trade (2008-01-07 07:29:23)Shell, Thanx for the list of sites and making me aware of the importance of Social Bookmarking and SEOc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 17
  • 19. BlogBook 1.3. March1.3 March1.3.1 Link to Your Home Page Correctly - SEO Tip Week 9 (2007-03-02 06:29)[1] The last few tips have been a little longer than I planned when I originally came up with the ideato post [2]one SEO tip per week. On the other hand I wanted the SEO tips to have some meat to them soI’m okay with making the posts more than a few sentences. But I thought I’d give everyone a break and doa tip that was short and sweet, but very important, of course.Be sure to provide a link to your home page.Pure genius, right? Of course we all know we should do this, but how you do it is just as impor-tant. I think examples work best so here are some ways not to link to your home page. Let’s assume yourpage filename is index.html.<a href=”/index.html”>Home</a><a href=”http://www.mysite.com/index.html”>Home</a>What is wrong with this you say? The problem is linking to the filename. Always link to the rootaddress. Your links on your site and any external links pointing to your site’s home page should looksomething like this.<a href=”/”>Home</a><a href=”http://www.mysite.com/”>Home</a>The reason we do this is so the search engines don’t split our PageRank to multiple web addressesof our home page. If all the links are pointing to the root address (http://www.mysite.com) then all thePageRank will be gathered in the root address and not split between the root address and the filename(http://www.mysite.com/index.html).Get on the Same PageBe sure all the links on your site point to the root and check them to be sure; even images on your siteshould follow this advice. It doesn’t matter if you are pointing to the root with just a ”/” or using the fullurl (http://www.mysite.com/), both work the same way. You want any external links to point to the fullurl as well and ask anyone linking to your website to use the ”www” in the link. The key is uniformity. Wewant all links pointing to the same web address for maximum PageRank and search engine rankings.Bonus TipAs a bonus tip, try to use a keyword in the internal links to your home page when possible. Using thelink text ”Home” provides little ranking support unless you sell homes. Don’t let this cloud your judgmentthough, having a link to your home page with a three word keyword phrase might look ridiculous andunprofessional.Next time you are surfing around, click a link to a home page and see how many are linking correctly andhow many [3]aren’t.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/18 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 20. 1.3. March BlogBook3. http://www.arborday.org/1.3.2 Seven “Secrets― to SEO Success - SEO Tip Week 10 (2007-03-07 18:08)[1] This week’s [2]SEO Tip is more than a tip, it is strategic overview on SEO. I recently spoke witha potential client interested acquiring our [3]SEO services and when I said that SEO really isn’t that com-plicated he raised an eyebrow. I followed by saying that search engine optimization doesn’t have any bigsecrets or tricks that only we SEO consultants know. It common sense applied with industry knowledge -knowledge that can be with due diligence and research. So with that in mind, I am revealing the ”SevenSecrets of SEO Success” and I’m doing it all for free.1. Research Your Keyword Phrases. Invest the time and do your research. What do users type inthe search engines when looking for services or products on your site. We use a few tools such as[4]WordTracker, [5]Keyword Discovery and [6]Overture’s Keyword Selector tool among others to findout what keyword phrases are best to target. Never assume you know which keywords to targetuntil you do the research. I guarantee you will learn something about your business and your targetaudience when you do. Finding a keyword you didn’t realize was being searched on can add visitorsand [7]increase [8]conversions.2. Design an SEO-Friendly Website. I cringe every time I see an all Flash site and I’m asked to achievehigh rankings for said site. As much as Flash can hurt a site for rankings there are other things tobe aware of, such as: sparse text, poorly written code, javascript on your pages, 404 errors, usinggraphics instead of text, javascript navigation, deeply nested pages and pages that can’t be found byclicking a link are just a few. Make sure a someone with SEO knowledge with the site design and build.While later is better than never, ideally you want the SEO consultant to work with the designers andprogrammers.3. Write Unique Page Titles. I wrote about this earlier so take a look at my post on [9]How ImportantAre Website Titles. It is critical that every web page on your site have a different and unique title.It is the most important part of your web page when search engines are determining your web pagemessage and ranking. This is easy, so be sure to do it.4. Write Focused Content. This may appear to be simple common sense, but too often a web page willtry to be too many things and dilute its true message. Each thought, theme or topic should have itsown web page. If you sell dog products, then a page for each category would be needed. Dog toyswould be a major category with its own page, but chew toys would be a new page and so on. Youwouldn’t mix chew toys and dog bedding. The search engines want to see a focus so they know whatto rank your web page for as well as where to rank your web page.5. Insert Keywords. If you have written a descriptive and keyword-rich title it follows suit that your pagecontent is also going to have keywords throughout. Write for humans, but keep in mind the searchengines. You don’t want to overdue it, but you do want your page theme to be evident. List yourkeyword phrase in your titles, headers and content and the search engines will know reward you withhigher visibility.6. Build Keyword-Rich Links. There is nothing more important for the high ranking success of your sitethan strategic link building. And with that said, there is nothing more important than choosing theright text to link to your site. If your company name is ”[10]Big Oak Studios” and you are an [11]SEOc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 19
  • 21. BlogBook 1.3. Marchcompany then you better be sure to request any links pointing to your site have similar terms such asSEO, company, firm, search engine optimization, marketing, Internet somewhere in the links. Let thelink state your business, not your web address or company name.7. Find Quality Links. Since acquiring links is the most important off-site task you can do, then itwould reason you should do it right. While having a large number of links is important, making surethey are quality is tantamount to your site’s success. This is especially true in high competition areas.Quality links from sites with authority (popular and trusted sites) carry more weight. One link froman authority site can be worth a hundred or more low-quality sites.As an SEO company, we do these things and many more to achieve high rankings. Some of the ”secrets”listed above require many hours and creative ingenuity to accomplish the task at hand. But the bottom lineis this: there is no secret and if you have the time and initiative and do the research you will have success.Sometimes you don’t have the time and that is when you should consider talking to an SEO Company to help.If you are at such a point, please give us call at 1-804-741-6776 or email us at [12]contact@bigoakinc.com.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/4. http://www.wordtracker.com/5. http://www.keywordiscovery.com/6. http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/increase-conversions-on-your-website/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/increase-conversions-on-your-website/9. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-important-are-page-titles/10. http://www.bigoakinc.com/11. http://www.bigoakinc.com/12. mailto:contact@bigoakinc.comShell Harris (2007-03-11 23:46:15)A few methods we use involve checking the backlinks or your competitors. Yahoo has the most accurate list-ings of backlinks so use them. Go to Yahoo.com and then type this in the search box, inserting your domainname of choice: linksite:www.sitename.com The sites with links pointing to the domain name you entered will nowbe seen. Usually the high profile linking sites are displayed first. Target these site for your linking campaign.There are other tools to find quality links. Here are a few that I have used. http://www.webconfs.com/backlink-builder.php http://tools.seobook.com/general/link-suggest/ http://www.linkhounds.com/hub-finder/hubfinder.phpYou should also be submitting to paid directories. Here is a list of some the best paid directories:http://www.avivadirectory.com/strongest-directories/Lists (2007-03-10 13:12:12)Any tips on how to actually implement item #7? Thanks. :)Eric E. Smith (2007-03-19 12:10:47)#4 is a big one and one I see violated more often than any of the others. If a site visitor can’t tell what your webpage is about, how will a search engine?1.3.3 Get to Know Google Services - SEO Tip Week 11 (2007-03-16 09:07)[1] Get to know Google. What would an SEO Consultant’s life be like without Google? An interesting20 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 22. 1.3. March BlogBookquestion but one we are likely never to have to answer. Google is the new Microsoft and will affect ourlives forever more in ways we don’t even realize yet. Don’t believe me? Do you think Google just does websearch? Think again.I’ve listed many services that Google offers and I’m sure you may be a bit surprised at how many dif-ferent pies the search giant’s thumb is actuall in. The list is growing so please contribute if you know of anyI may have missed. I have bolded the Google services I view important for SEO purposes.Google Services Web AddressGoogle AdSense [2]https://www.google.com/adsense/Google AdWords [3]https://adwords.google.com/Google Analytics [4]http://google.com/analytics/Google Answers [5]http://answers.google.com/Google Base [6]http://base.google.com/Google Blog [7]http://googleblog.blogspot.com/Google Blog Search [8]http://blogsearch.google.com/Google Bookmarks [9]http://www.google.com/bookmarks/Google Books Search [10]http://books.google.com/Google Calendar [11]http://google.com/calendar/Google Catalogs [12]http://catalogs.google.com/Google Code [13]http://code.google.com/Google Code Search [14]http://www.google.com/codesearch/Google Deskbar [15]http://deskbar.google.com/Google Desktop [16]http://desktop.google.com/Google Directory [17]http://www.google.com/dirhpGoogle Earth [18]http://earth.google.com/Google Finance [19]http://finance.google.com/Google Groups [20]http://groups.google.com/Google Holiday Logos[21]http://www.google.com/intl/en/holidaylogos.htmlGoogle Images [22]http://images.google.com/Google Jobs [23]http://www.google.com/intl/en/jobs/Google Labs [24]http://labs.google.com/Google Local [25]http://local.google.com/Google Mail [26]http://mail.google.com/Google Maps [27]http://maps.google.com/Google Mars [28]http://www.google.com/mars/Google Mobile [29]http://mobile.google.com/Google Moon [30]http://moon.google.com/Google Movies [31]http://www.google.com/movies?qGoogle Music [32]http://www.google.com/musicsearch?qGoogle News [33]http://news.google.com/Google Page Creator [34]http://pages.google.com/Google Personalized Home"¦ [35]http://www.google.com/igGoogle Reader [36]http://www.google.com/reader/Google Remove URL[37]http://services.google.com/urlconsole/controllerGoogle Research Blog [38]http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/Google Romance [39]http://www.google.com/romance/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 21
  • 23. BlogBook 1.3. MarchGoogle Scholar [40]http://scholar.google.com/Google Sitemaps [41]https://www.google.com/webmasters/sitemaps/Google Search History [42]http://www.google.com/searchhistory/Google SMS [43]http://www.google.com/sms/Google Suggest [44]http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=1Google Talk [45]http://talk.google.com/Google Toolbar [46]http://toolbar.google.com/Google Transit Trip Planner [47]http://www.google.com/transitGoogle Translate [48]http://www.google.com/translate_tGoogle Trends [49]http://www.google.com/trendsGoogle Video [50]http://video.google.com/Google Web Accelerator [51]http://webaccelerator.google.com/Google Web API [52]http://www.google.com/apis/Google Web Search [53]http://www.google.comGoogle Zeitgeist [54]http://www.google.com/press/intl-zeitgeist.htmlPlease leave a comment if you have more Google services to add or subtract (some beta items don’t lastlong).Visible links 1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. https://www.google.com/adsense/3. https://adwords.google.com/4. http://google.com/analytics/5. http://answers.google.com/6. http://base.google.com/7. http://googleblog.blogspot.com/8. http://blogsearch.google.com/9. http://www.google.com/bookmarks/10. http://books.google.com/11. http://google.com/calendar/12. http://catalogs.google.com/13. http://code.google.com/14. http://www.google.com/codesearch/15. http://deskbar.google.com/16. http://desktop.google.com/17. http://www.google.com/dirhp18. http://earth.google.com/19. http://finance.google.com/20. http://groups.google.com/21. http://www.google.com/intl/en/holidaylogos.html22. http://images.google.com/23. http://www.google.com/intl/en/jobs/24. http://labs.google.com/25. http://local.google.com/26. http://mail.google.com/27. http://maps.google.com/28. http://www.google.com/mars/29. http://mobile.google.com/22 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 24. 1.3. March BlogBook30. http://moon.google.com/31. http://www.google.com/movies?q32. http://www.google.com/musicsearch?q33. http://moon.google.com/34. http://pages.google.com/35. http://www.google.com/ig36. http://www.google.com/reader/37. http://services.google.com/urlconsole/controller38. file://localhost/home/blogbooker/tmp/bhydq65r/39. http://www.google.com/romance/40. http://scholar.google.com/41. https://www.google.com/webmasters/sitemaps/42. http://www.google.com/searchhistory/43. http://www.google.com/sms/44. http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=145. http://talk.google.com/46. http://toolbar.google.com/47. http://www.google.com/transit48. http://www.google.com/translate_t49. http://www.google.com/trends50. http://video.google.com/51. http://webaccelerator.google.com/52. http://www.google.com/apis/53. http://www.google.com/54. http://www.google.com/press/intl-zeitgeist.htmlUbuntu Linux (2007-07-20 08:59:07)What about Searchmash, Google’s testing ground for new features: http://www.searchmash.com/Shell Harris (2007-07-26 10:06:36)i hadn’t heard of searchmash.com but I like it. Thanks for the link.abi (2007-06-21 14:13:25)google’s programmers search engine http://devshots.com Devshots returns Google search results, but emphasize onprogramming related sites and resources. So the search result will be smart and accurate.Audi (2007-05-25 05:33:13)Nice list, eventhough google suggest is inside google labs, I think it deserves its own link. And maybe Google’s urlremoval service @ http://services.google.com/urlconsole/controllerShell Harris (2007-05-25 10:10:55)Thanks, Audi. Done and done. ”Google Remove URL” was added.1.3.4 Internet Marketing with Articles - SEO Tip Week 12 (2007-03-22 06:50)[1] If you have been involved in the mad world of search engine optimization for any time you knowthat building links to your site is importance in achieving high search engine rankings, especially in Google.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 23
  • 25. BlogBook 1.3. MarchYou might also know how important writing and submitting articles can be in your quest for one-way linkswhich lead to page one results.Before starting an article marketing campaign, make sure you invest in a sound strategy. You don’t want towrite an article, submit it and then forget it. Article writing should be part of a bigger SEO plan. Whatdo I mean? Well, I like real world examples and Big Oak has many great [2]SEO success stories, so letstake a look at one of our many successful clients who have used articles in their SEO campaign: [3]DanforthDiamond.Articles, A Gem of a StrategyDanforth started with us with a brand new site, no search engine visibility and a small budget. Of coursethey had lofty goals. They wanted to rank highly for search terms such as diamond engagement rings and[4]engagement rings. Both are very competitive search terms and needed an aggressive, yet [5]ethical [6]SEOCompany. We have helped them achieve the rankings they were hoping for ([7] #4 in Google, for engagementrings) and article marketing was an important part of the SEO process.We have published many [8]well-written articles for Danforth, with a variety of links from the author’sbox and the article itself pointing to the jeweler’s home page and internal pages of the site. Quality writingis a standard at Big Oak and this has allowed us to have a greater distribution across of the Internet whichprovides more inbound links for Danforth. Be sure your writing stands above the competition. Take a lookat similar articles and be sure your article says something new or at least says it better.SEO and the Article: Working TogetherSo what is the strategy I’m talking about? Use articles are part of a coordinated marketing effort. Backup your article with multiple SEO strategies to make the article more effective. Danforth decided to sell anew metal called Palladium. They are ranked [9] #3 in Google for the search term ’Palladium Jewelry’ andrank well for other palladium search terms so our strategy works. Here is how we did it. (Links show actualexamples)1. Write the landing page for [10]palladium jewelry.2. Write [11]article about palladium and why it is a good choice for jewelry. Distribute article.3. Write [12]press release about palladium being available at Danforth Diamond. Distribute press release.4. Frequent posts on [13]company blog about palladium.5. Focus link building with keywords such as palladium, jewelry, rings, etc.6. Be patient a few months and watch top rankings appear.Trusting the Article SourceAll of these steps were vital to search ranking success but article marketing was key. Not only did it provideone-way links, it gave the potential customer information about Palladium so they could make an informeddecision. It also established Danforth as a trusted and knowledgeable merchant, which made buying fromthem with confidence a given.Running a successful SEO campaign requires a lot work and expertise. Well, it requires a lot of qualitywriting and expertise. Don’t overlook the importance of article marketing and be sure to use it wisely withother SEO efforts. It will be a better tool as part of a holistic SEO strategy rather than a one-shot, short-sighted strategy.24 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 26. 1.3. March BlogBookArticle Submission SitesIt is good practice to find article sites that specialize in your article’s topic. It will give you a higher chancefor being published and makes backlinks more relative. Be on the lookout for sites that have articles cateringto your web site’s subject matter. You can easily find such sites by searching for your ”keyword” + articlein the Google search box. Here are some generic article submission sites we use at Big Oak.• Idea Marketers - [14]http://www.ideamarketers.com/writers.cfm• Buzzle.com - [15]http://www.buzzle.com/secure/become-edit or.asp• Article Central - [16]http://thewhir.com/find/articlecentral/suggest.asp• Go Articles - [17]http://www.goarticles.com/ulogin.html• EzineArticles - [18]http://ezinearticles.com/submit/• AMAzines - [19]http://amazines.com• Article City - [20]http://www.articlecity.com/article submission.shtml• NetterWeb.com - [21]http://www.netterweb.com/articles/• Article Insider - [22]http://www.articleinsider.com/start.phpThere are hundreds more to be sure, but I would say less than 30 generic article submission sites are worthyour time when submitting. Be sure they article submission site you are looking into will provide goodmarketing exposure for your masterpiece!–We hope you are learning from our [23]weekly SEO tips. If you have any suggestions or questions, [24]pleaselet us know. If you submit a good question, we may use it in our tips. If you wish to contact Big Oak tohelp you drive traffic and sales to your site we look forward to speaking with you. [25]Contact us today!1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/portfolio/clients/full-client-list.php3. http://www.danforthdiamond.com/4. http://www.danforthdiamond.com/engagement_rings/index.html5. http://www.bigoakinc.com/6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/7. http://www.google.com/search?q=engagement+rings&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a8. http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Jill_Renee9. http://www.google.com/search?q=palladium+jewelry&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a10. http://www.danforthdiamond.com/palladium/index.html11. http://ezinearticles.com/?Palladium-Jewelry:-The-Affordable-Treasure&id=28816312. http://www.prleap.com/pr/47545/13. http://www.danforthdiamond.com/blog/palladium-jewelry.html14. http://www.ideamarketers.com/writers.cfm15. http://www.buzzle.com/secure/become-editor.aspc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 25
  • 27. BlogBook 1.3. March16. http://thewhir.com/find/articlecentral/suggest.asp17. http://www.goarticles.com/ulogin.html18. http://ezinearticles.com/submit/19. http://amazines.com/20. http://www.articlecity.com/article_submission.shtml21. http://www.netterweb.com/articles/22. http://www.articleinsider.com/start.php23. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/24. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/contact-big-oak.php25. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/contact-big-oak.phpBill (2007-04-09 16:01:16)All good stuff. The trick with article marketing, I find, is to actually write an article that’s really worth reading ANDis easy to read. If Digg and Reddit are anything to go by, ”easy to read” often means having a list structure, or atleast avoiding large and off-putting blocks of text.Shell Harris (2007-04-09 16:20:41)Bill, I agree. We try to walk the thin line and write quality material in our articles giving them a new point of viewand then we try to make it easy to digest for the casual reader.Brian (2007-03-26 21:49:55)Great post, very informative.Wesley Warren (2007-03-26 12:38:36)Nice article. Writing quality articles is a great way to build up readers and links.kabababrubarta (2007-03-26 19:19:46)Cool! kabababrubartaWordPress Wizard Advice (2007-07-29 22:53:57)I must say there is considerable amount of info in this article. First I did not know so many sources of writing articles.Secondly you have outlined the article marketing with step by step process that makes it easy for people who are juststarting up the seo of theoir site and know very little about it.1.3.5 Graphic Headlines Can Work for SEO - SEO Tip Week 13 (2007-03-30 07:30)[1] This examples in this tip are no longer online. The recommendations are still the same. Usinggraphic headlines are still okay if you use the title and alt tags.This week’s tip is for those sites which are graphically heavy or rely on a specific typeface for their headlines.While we at [2]Big Oak SEO always prefer a HTML text headline, we understand that sometimes the clientor designer would really prefer to use a typeface that isn’t available through HTML. Instead of being heavyhanded and insisting the site be changed to all HTML text we have gone with another, simpler approach.Let me clarify this: I would prefer to see HTML text used and with all things being equalHTML text will always be better than any techniques applied with graphic text.26 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 28. 1.3. March BlogBookAs I have written in the past, I feel that examples are the best way to learn and we have applied this tech-nique to [3]Grote Consulting, a long-time client of Big Oak.You can view the [4]Performance Appraisal page we will be using in the example.We used the following HTML code to place a <H1> tag around our graphic text and allow the searchengines to read it as a heading:<h1><img src=”/images/headers/performance-appraisal.jpg” alt=”Effective Employee Per-formance Appraisal Tools” title=”Effective Employee Performance Appraisal Tools” width=”750”height=”96” /></h1>The key is using both the alt tag and the title tag within the image source HTML code. Matching both tagswith the same text is helpful. The search engines may devalue the alt and title tags, but when they conformwith the HTML text and title of the page they can contribute to higher search engine rankings.Further using this web page as an example I have provided a link the the [5]Google cache for this page.The H1 header is clearly identified even though we used graphic text on page. And finally, to prove thatGoogle respects the proper use of this SEO technique I did a search for the H1 header ’Effective EmployeePerformance Appraisal Tools’ and the example page is the [6] #2 result in Google.Let me repeat this, using HTML text is always better, but using graphical text with the technique I haveshown you will help your rankings too. If you try spamming the alt or title tag in the image code you areabusing this technique and lower rankings will follow. Use this wisely and be honest when adding text tothe alt and title tags, especially when wrapping an H1 tag around them.–Hope you have enjoyed this weekly [7]SEO tip. If you have any suggestions or questions for Big Oak,[8]please let us know. If you submit a question we like, we may use it in our tips. [9]Contact Big Oak SEOto help you drive traffic and sales to your site.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/3. http://www.groteconsulting.com/4. http://www.groteconsulting.com/expertise/performance-appraisal.asp5. http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:http://www.groteconsulting.com/services/performance-appraisal/index.asp&hl=en&strip=16. http://www.google.com/search?q=Effective+Employee+Performance+Appraisal+Tools&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/contact-big-oak.php9. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/contact-big-oak.phpemil (2007-03-30 15:01:54)wow, thanks for the tip. I will use this !c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 27
  • 29. BlogBook 1.4. AprilShell Harris (2007-03-31 00:07:07)Emil, Glad you found this useful. If you do use it, please submit a link. I think it is extremely helpful to see exampleswhen giving out SEO tips.Seo (2008-01-15 19:17:46)the page and the rankings are gone today but the experiment is interesting..of course the keyword is not very difficult,that page has some links using similar anchor text(more than 20) but the experiment is still pretty interesting for me.Would like to test it without the links pointing to that page though and weight better the factors of this equation.Thanks1.4 April1.4.1 Every Web Page Should Be Unique - SEO Tip Week 14 (2007-04-06 06:23)Every page on your web site should have its own story and clear message. You must be sure that the searchengines have no doubt what each page should rank well for. Do not mix signals or too keyword phrases ona page. If you are selling [1]vinyl replacement windows, have a page directly focused on that product line.If you look at this [2]example link from [3]Creative Energy, a local [4]client of Big Oak, you can see thefocus on vinyl replacement windows is clear from the content.. Being a local Richmond, VA company, theirgoal for this page was top placement in Google for the search term ’Richmond vinyl replacement windows’.They have the [5] #1 and #2 listing. But we also have them [6]ranked #12 for the term ’vinyl replacementwindows’. How did we accomplish this?We gave this page individual attention and that made the difference. Let’s look deeper and check outthe factors that make a web page unique in your web site.TitleThe title sets up the page for the search engine. Short and direct, this is a good title that states clearly whatthe page is about to the search engines.<title>Vinyl Replacement Windows from Simonton Window | Creative Energy of Richmond,Virginia</title>Meta TagsWhile the [7]importance of meta tags is questioned, using the description tag has its uses. And if you aregoing to use it, make sure it mentions your targeted key phrases. Thr meta description tag on our examplepage also contains the key phrase vinyl replacement windows.<meta name=”description” http-equiv=”description” content=”Creative Energy, the exteriorexperts, installs vinyl replacement windows in the Richmond, Virginia region and recommendsSimonton Windows to homeowners in central Virginia.”>Even though the meta keyword tag is ignored for the most part, if it is part of your plan, make it count andmake it different for each page.28 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 30. 1.4. April BlogBook<meta name=”keywords”http-equiv=”keywords”content=”vinyl replacement window, simon-ton window, replacement window, replacement window, vinyl window richmond virginia ”>Keyword DensityI just wrote post on the [8]myth of OPTIMAL keyword density, but having the keyword phrase on the page,of course, makes good sense. If you check out the keyword density for this page for the term vinyl replacementwindows it is 4.21 %. This may be a little high but if you read the page it doesn’t feel ”spammy” so it isacceptable. Remember, you are writing for the search engines and people.Linking, External and InternalMake sure you have a few keyword-rich links to your important pages from external sites and your internallinks. This is referred to as [9]deep linking and will help your site’s ranking.Here you can see an [10]article written for the replacement windows with the exact link text we want inthe author’s box. For the internal linking, the footer on Creative Energy’s web site contains a link to theVinyl Replacement Window page with the link text ’[11]REPLACEMENT WINDOWS’, a good text linkeven without the keyword ’vinyl’ included.Building Your Web Site One Page at a TimeAs you can see this page was given the individual attention it needed to show high in the search enginerankings, but the real message of this [12]SEO tip is that this page is has its own voice on the client’s site. Ifyou view the other product web pages for Creative Energy you will find they follow suit with targted titles,meta tags, content and linking. Take the time to craft each web page individually and take care to spendtime on the components I’ve listed.1. http://www.creativeenergyexteriors.com/windows.htm2. http://www.creativeenergyexteriors.com/windows.htm3. http://www.creativeenergyexteriors.com/windows.htm4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/portfolio/clients/full-client-list.php5. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=OY7&q=richmond+vinyl+replacement+windows&btnG=Search6. http://www.google.com/search?q=vinyl+replacement+windows&hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&hs=hDS&start=10&sa=N7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/use-the-meta-description-tag-seo-tip-week-3/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/keyword-density-myth/9. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/deep-linking-seo-tip-week-4/10. http://www.centurionexteriors.com/nashville_windows/lower_bills.html11. http://www.creativeenergyexteriors.com/windows.htm12. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/WordPress Plugin Advice (2007-07-16 22:36:35)This is not the first place I heard that internal linking does help SEO, but somehow you did not explain why. Maybe You have reserved that for some other post ?Shell Harris (2007-07-26 10:10:12)Internal linking helps the same way that external linking helps. Links from inside your site count just as links fromoutside your site. The big difference is you can precisely control what your internal link text is and where it pointsc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 29
  • 31. BlogBook 1.4. Aprilto. Take care of your own ”house” first and use your linking strategically before going after external links.1.4.2 Register Your Domain for More Than One Year - SEO Tip Week 15(2007-04-13 07:27)I have an easy [1]SEO Tip this week. Make sure you register you domain name for more than one year.Register it for a minimum of three years and more if you can. This is especially important for new sites.The search engines, particularly Google, want to see that you believe your site is going to be successful.They also want to be sure that your site will be meaningful. A good indicator can be fort the length oftime you register your domain. And the first place they check is with your domain register company (e.g.[2]Godaddy.com).Google has also filed United States Patent Application 20050071741 stating this very fact.”Valuable (legitimate) domains are often paid for several years in advance, while doorway(illegitimate) domains rarely are used for more than a year. Therefore, the date when a domainexpires in the future can be used as a factor in predicting the legitimacy of a domain and, thus,the documents associated therewith.”•Another good reason to increase your domain registration period is it will prevent you from accidentallylosing the domain name because you overlooked or didn’t receive the reminder email to renew.While this tip is not going to rocket you to #1 in the search results, it can provide a quicker exit fromthe [3]Google Sandbox and may provide some boost in your rankings. With so many contributing factorswhy overlook one of the easiest things to do. Go ahead and renew, it’ll do a website good!1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http:///3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/seo-articles/googles-sandbox-effect.phpVjeko (2007-04-20 07:36:25)Hi to all! I don’t have a lot experience but I am certain that this is very important factor. I have just realised whymy site went down from 10th postion to 80th!!! I am not joking. I was on free server and the service was free ’forever’. When I changed IP address of the site, and paid domain for 1 year it went down. Regards, Vjeko from Croatia.Shell Harris (2007-04-14 11:43:08)There are many sources that agree with my post. Here is another article about this from [1]Search Engine Guide.Google has also filed United States Patent Application 20050071741 backing up my theory.Valuable (legitimate) domains are often paid for several years in advance, while doorway (illegitimate) domains rarelyare used for more than a year. Therefore, the date when a domain expires in the future can be used as a factor inpredicting the legitimacy of a domain and, thus, the documents associated therewith.Of course there are also people who think this is a ploy cooked up by the domain name registering companies. I stillhold that it is good business practice and a small investment. Whether you do it for 10 years or 2 years is up to you.I still say it makes sense for a host of reasons, betting rankings is just one of them.1. http://www.searchengineguide.com/hartzer/005144.html30 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 32. 1.4. April BlogBookOrderer (2007-04-14 07:24:58)Is that a fact? I always only pay for a year in advance cause I figure I can’t trust the registrars for too long a periodof time. Would you please share the source of the info, if there is one? Thanks a lot!1.4.3 Submit Press Releases - SEO Tip Week 16 (2007-04-20 06:41)Submit Press Releases for Link Building[1] Finding one-way links to your website can be a tough task. Finding quality one-way links to yourwebsites can be even more difficult.Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people put links to your site without you even asking them to? Well, sub-mitting a press release can help accomplish this. Similar to my tip on [2]SEO[3] with articles, using a pressrelease to build links and increase search engine rankings can also be effective. What so many people overlooksubmitting press releases, which are copyright free, is the fact that you can put links to your site within thecontent of the press release. We used this method of promotion for our [4]online toy store client and you cansee one of their [5]press releases.Not only can you place helpful links to your home page in the body of the press release but you canuse [6]deep linking and link to interior pages of your website. Deep linking is often harder to do as mostwebsites would rather link to your home page. We use PRweb.com and the cost is higher to use text linksrather than actual URLs.Press Release Submit SiteAs I wrote, PRweb.com does charge a fee for submission, but there are many free press release submissionsites as well. Here are some that we also use:• [7]www.24-7pressrelease.com• [8]www.prfree.com• [9]www.prleap.com• [10]www.pressbox.co.uk• [11]www.press-world.com/add• [12]http://www.express-press-release.com• [13]http://www.free-press-release.comPress release submission is not the magic bullet for SEO success, but it is a valuable tool in the SEOconsultant’s toolbox. Whether it is a product release, a major hire, or a strategic acquisition you can makethe press release perform double duty as both a internet marketing tool and a link building tool. Big Oakprovides [14]press release writing & submission as part of our SEO strategy.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internet-marketing-with-articles-seo-tip-week-12/http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internet-marketing-with-articles-seo-tip-week-12/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 31
  • 33. BlogBook 1.4. April3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internet-marketing-with-articles-seo-tip-week-12/http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internet-marketing-with-articles-seo-tip-week-12/4. http://www.sillyasstoys.com/5. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2005/2/prweb204256.htm6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/deep-linking-seo-tip-week-4/7. http://www.24-7pressrelease.com/8. http://www.prfree.com/9. http://www.prleap.com/10. http://www.pressbox.co.uk/11. http://www.press-world.com/add12. http://www.express-press-release.com/13. http://www.free-press-release.com/14. http://www.bigoakinc.com/capabilities/seo-press-releases.phpAbdul Hayi Mansoor (2007-08-05 02:59:13)Very informative and profession. Would be of great help for me in future.1.4.4 SEO and Flash - SEO Tip Week 17 (2007-04-27 07:08)Flash-based sites have problems with SEO or ”Skip This Intro”Update: I laughed out loud after reading this post theGoogleCache.com. View the [1]Should I Make a FlashSite Flowchart?Using Flash is a slippery slope, even [2]Adobe’s Flash page is light on the Flash. I hesitate to bring upthis topic as it can be very heated. Why, I myself used to be an avid Flash developer about 8 years ago.But back then not many people understood the concept of SEO or Internet Marketing and Google was justa twinkle in the Internet’s watchful eye.Well, now SEO has become one of the fasting growing industries on the Internet and Flash has lost some ofit’s...well, Flash. In other words, more often than not, we search frantically for the ”Skip This Intro” buttonwhen we see animation start flying around the screen. If not the first time then definitely the second time.We don’t have time for Flash intros and tedious downloads in today’s world. We want information and wewant it fast. Flash is contrary to this in many cases.Don’t get me wrong, I like Flash, and think it can be helpful and entertaining of sites for entertainment,gaming and site’s that have inherit brand popularity such as [3]Coca-Cola. Most of us running a business onthe web need visitors, customers, users and clients coming to our sites. Truth is though, it is hard to find aFlash website vs. a non-Flash website. Yes, I know that [4]Flash can be indexed, I also know that an HTMLsite will beat a Flash site every time when all things are equal.Of course, using Flash in a traditional website can be fine and dandy. When used efficiently, Flash canenhance a website without damaging it’s search engine rankings. But Flash must be used with caution.If all of your content and menus are in Flash, search engines will have a harder time following the links. Ifyou feel strongly about using Flash, be sure to create an HTML version of the page as well. Your users willthank you as they will now be able to find your site with the help of the search engines. You may wish toblock the Flash version of your pages from the crawlers with a robots.txt file, since you don’t want your32 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 34. 1.5. May BlogBookpages indexed twice. If your website contains Flash, be sure put the navigation outside of the Flash contentor the search engine spiders won’t be able to navigate your site. Your content should also reside outside ofFlash’s influence.Think of Flash as accent material for you site. Use it for graphical callouts, [5]product images, interac-tive portions of your site and anywhere you can enhance the user experience without causing problems forthe spiders or confusion for the user. Remember, never use Flash as your entire site if you want any searchengine visibility. This is important because you can optimize the [6]page title, [7]meta tags and other contentplaced on invididual pages making sure each [8]web page is unique.Finally, give your users a Flash and a HTML version of your site. Watch the visitor stats and I’m bet-ting you see a much higher number of visitors view the low-bandwidth verision of your website. In any caseyou will have given the spiders something to follow and the search engines something to index and searcherssomething find. It may seem like extra work, but the traffic you will acquire from it will be worth it.1. http://www.thegooglecache.com/?p=462. http://www.adobe.com/products/flash/3. http://www.coca-cola.com/home.htm?lang=en_US4.http://www.webpronews.com/topnews/2004/09/07/google-can-now-index-flash-an-interview-with-michael-marshall5. http://www.cartoonsmart.com/product_display_techniques.html6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-important-are-page-titles/7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/use-the-meta-description-tag-seo-tip-week-3/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/every-web-page-should-be-unique-seo-tip-week-14/jefe (2007-06-15 22:31:01)Site needs traffic because Search Engines are not picking up your Flash? Then submit your Flash based website forfree at FlashSEO.net! HOW DOES IT WORK? Search engines will Index our pages, direct traffic to your new autocreated page on our site, and then we direct the traffic to your website automatically. Free Services: Search EngineOptimization for Adobe Flash Sites and DirectoryVoluntary Death (2007-04-29 14:31:30)I like Flash too but that was ages ago. I still do include flash or do flash projects and accept clients who wants flash.However, personally, my site is now a blog and most of the other sites are now blogs too. Well, why? Just as you’vesaid, search engines love blogs and non-flash sites more than flash.1.5 May1.5.1 Search Engine & Directory Submissions - SEO Tip Week 18 (2007-05-04 14:37)[1] Directories are an easy way to build links because anyone can submit and get listed. Directoriescan, therefore, be of little use for the same reason. Of course getting in directories can be time consumingbut it is a one-time affair and usually worth the time. They provide one-way links which will increase youronline presence. Not all directories are created equal and paying for the better ones is often money wellspent.Inclusion Tipsc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 33
  • 35. BlogBook 1.5. MaySelect the best category for your site and follow the instructions on the submission form carefully.Write your descriptions without sensational text. Descriptions of sites should describe the content of the siteconcisely and accurately When submitting to directories, make sure to vary anchor text and use keywordsin the description and title fields.Choose the most appropriate category for your site. Finding a category that best matches yoursite’s theme or content will increase traffic from the directory and provide higher quality one-way link toyour site for the search engines to follow.Good DirectoriesA few of the more search engine friendly directories for valuable links are the following:[2]Yahoo! Directory: The Yahoo! Directory is the biggest and oldest directory on the web, and oneof the few directories that can provide traffic.[3]DMOZ: The Open Directory Project (DMOZ) is a free, volunteer-run directory. Google and manyother sites pull information directly from DMOZ and display the description in the search engine results.[4]Business.com: A huge business-related directory.[5]Best of The Web: One of the oldest directories on the web.[6]Aviva Directory: A well-marketed directory.[7]GoGuides.org: Another well-run directory that has been around a while.Blog DirectoriesHere are some recommended blog directories.[8]MyBlogLog: Everyone who reads a web site or blog can learn about and engage with one an-other, and in the process take the conversation to a whole new level.[9]Blogcatalog: Labeled as ”the premiere blog directory on the internet”. Promote your own blog orfind blogs on various topics.[10]Bumpzee: join a community, you are fed with an ever-updating list of blogs and blog posts sub-mitted and chosen by like-minded individuals.A more complete [11]list of online directories is on our website. Aviva Directory has has a list ofthe [12]best directories.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://search.yahoo.com/dir?fr=yfp-t-5013. http://www.dmoz.org/4. http://www.business.com/5. http://www.botw.com/6. http://www.avivadirectory.com/34 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 36. 1.5. May BlogBook7. http://www.goguides.org/8. http://www.blogcatalog.com/9. http://www.blogcatalog.com/10. http://www.bumpzee.com/11. http://www.bigoakinc.com/limb/seo-directories.php12. http://www.avivadirectory.com/strongest-directories/John Hunter (2007-07-04 19:05:06)The [1]Curious Cat Cool Connections directory has been around for over 10 years and provides SEO friendly links.The ”catch” is it is actually designed to be used by people and only the best sites are included (plus the scope islimited). But for the right sites it is a useful resource, I think.1. http://curiouscat.net/cool/Akhilesh (2007-05-08 19:19:17)It’s sad that the good ones are not free and that the free ones (like DMOZ) have a lengthy review process. I’m notinto blogging for the money, and so can’t spend any. Oh well.Andy Beard (2007-05-08 09:36:00)You should probably add sites like MyBlogLog, Blogcatalog and Bumpzee to the list. I get more traffic from themevery day than I receive from DMOZ over a few months, and the links they are already providing are more valuable.Shell Harris (2007-05-08 09:47:12)Great suggestions, Andy. I have placed links to these sites for blogs in this post. Thanks for taking the time tocomment, I’ve always been a big fan of your blog. And purely coincidentally I added a link to Bumpzee today frommy [1]Dofollow post. I submitted my blog as well.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/nofollow-no-more-seo-blog-joins-the-minority/1.5.2 Control What Gets Indexed - SEO Tip Week 19 (2007-05-11 13:47)[1] Before reading this tip, make sure that you have read the tips from week 7 ([2]Duplicate Content &URL Canonicalization) and 14 ([3]Every Web Page Should Be Unique) to understand why unique content isvaluable.Under normal circumstances, you want every page to be unique, and for there to be one, and only one,URL displaying that content. However, there are situations where you might use multiple URLs for specificpurposes, such as tracking your Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns. Giving your PPC ads individual specificURLs makes them easier to track in your website statistics or analytics packages.Example Original URL: www.company.com/mypage.htmlExample PPC Ad URL: www.company.com/mypage.html?src=ppc001The problem with giving ads unique URLs is that they may end up being indexed by the search engines,especially Yahoo. The best solution is to use a [4]301 redirect to the original URL for that page, therebyc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 35
  • 37. BlogBook 1.5. Maycapturing any importance the individual URLs may have. If you cannot use a 301 redirect for technical orother reasons, you can stop these URLs from being indexed with your robots.txt file.If you only have a few URLs that you want to disallow, you can list them individually:User-agent: *Disallow: /mypage.html?src=ppc001Disallow: /mypage.html?src=ppc002This can become problematic if you are trying to disallow hundreds or even thousands of different URLs.This is where wildcards come in. While wildcards are not part of the standards of robots.txt files, Google,MSN, and Yahoo all support them. This can be extremely helpful in trying to get rid of some of those trickycontent duplication problems.The two supported wildcards are the asterisk ”*” which matches any sequence of characters, and the dollarsign ” $” which signifies the end of a URL string. Trailing asterisks are redundant, and not needed, sincethat is the natural behavior of the robots.txt standard.CompUSA ExampleThe [5]CompUSA home page is indexed hundreds of times by Yahoo with many variations of referral andtracking parameters.If they wanted to get rid of all URLs with parameters on their default.asp page, they could use:User-agent: *Disallow: /default.asp?Additional ExamplesIf you have printable versions of all your HTML pages that contain ” print” in the URL, you would use:User-agent: *Disallow: /* print*.html $If you use a session id parameters called ”sessionid” with users who are logged in, you would use:36 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 38. 1.5. May BlogBookUser-agent: *Disallow: /*sessionid=If you have a private folder called ”private memories” and you don’t want hackers being able to know thefull name of the folder simply by looking at your robots.txt file, you would use::User-agent: *Disallow: /private*/As you can see, there are many uses for the robots.txt file now that all of the big 3 search engines supportwildcards. Hopefully the official specification for robots.txt will support wildcards in the future, and all botswill understand them.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/duplicate-content-url-canonicalization/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/every-web-page-should-be-unique-seo-tip-week-14/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-to-do-a-301-redirect/5. http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/search?ei=UTF-8&p=http%3A//www.compusa.com/default.asp&bwm=p&bwms=p&searchbwm=Explore+URLFrancisco Cheng (2007-06-29 08:28:18)Good post, this could be very useful information.Orderer (2007-05-16 11:17:30)Wow that compusa stuff is really weird.Chris Alexander (2007-05-18 09:55:32)Yes, the noindex meta tag will also accomplish this. However there are many instances where it’s difficult, or notpossible, to use the noindex meta tag.Perfect Wealth Formula (2007-05-17 20:54:15)Can you use the noindex meta tag to accomplish this?Shell Harris (2007-05-13 22:27:04)Chris, That is a great tip and one that can literally bring your site back into the rankings practically overnight.1.5.3 SEO for Interior Webpages - SEO Tip Week 20 (2007-05-18 13:45)Most websites focus on their home page which is of course a good idea. It is the most important page ofyour site whether you are looking at search engine optimization, internet marketing or customer conversion.Making sure you homepage is optimized and marketed should be of primary importance, but be sure not toforget your interior pages.Often the arm chair optimizer will make the mistake of only trying to rank their home age. By this Ic 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 37
  • 39. BlogBook 1.5. Maymean they will only build links to the home page or make sure it is titled with the most important keywordsand so on. And while the home page should get the most SEO love, it is also important to your onlinemarketing success that you show your interior pages some SEO attention. Do you interior pages that aren’tranking well, but should be? Not every keyword can be crammed on to your home page, although I’ve seenit attempted. A car dealer has [1]tried this approach.Supporting the Home PageWhile marketing the home page is a monthly focus for us here at Big Oak, we are also aware of the powerinterior pages have for converting visitors into clients. We think of the home page as a lobby that helps directyou to the page that will provide the information or product you are searching for. If we can skip the lobbyaltogether and get the user directly to the page that would be better. That is unlikely to happen withoutproviding [2]deep linking to your interior pages.Marketing Interior PagesI like providing examples so here are some real world examples from our own clients. Our client ExhibitDealprovides [3]trade show displays and accessories. Their number #1 term is ”trade show displays” and as oftoday May 18, 2007 they are ranked #1 in Google ([4]Trade Show Displays Ranking). They also rank #1in Google for the term ”trade show flooring ([5]Trade Show Flooring Ranking Screen Shot). If you click thelinks to view the screen shots you will notice the #1 ranking for trade show flooring is an interior page ofExhibitDeal.Trying to rank the home page for trade show flooring would have been impossible. So we marketing bothkeyword phrases for their respective pages and achieved high ranking rankings for both. Currently the tradeshow flooring page has [6]89 backlinks according to Yahoo. Not an extremely large amount but decentamount when a targeted strategy is applied to a single interior page. Of course it helps that the site has[7]4,374 links overall, but only [8]3,009 links are pointing to the home page.Obviously it works for ExhibiDeal. Leading searchers to a page about trade show flooring when the searchmatches will increase sales.Choosing Interior Pages for SEODecide on a a few interior pages that can help your conversion efforts. If placing a user directly on an interiorpage, bypassing the home page, would help the sale or get them calling wouldn’t you want that? After youhave decided which pages might help your business if they ranked well, maybe 2 or 3, start optimizing themand then start link building.Providing deep linking to these pages will allow your site to have increased value overall and not juston your home page and the search engines like to see a site with popularity throughout on just on the homepage. This can increase you authority and your ranking for your entire site.Sound link a lot of work? It can be, but the rewards will be a website with much higher search enginevisibility. If you need help, [9]Big Oak SEO is available.1. http://www.wheelanddeal.com/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/deep-linking-seo-tip-week-4/3. http://www.exhibitdeal.com/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/05/trade-show-displays-1.gif5. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/05/trade-show-flooring-1.gif38 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 40. 1.5. May BlogBook6. https://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/search?p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.exhibitdeal.com%2Fproducts-flooring.html&bwm=i&bwms=p&bwmf=u&fr2=seo-rd-se7.https://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/search?p=http%3A%2F%2Fexhibitdeal.com&bwm=i&bwmf=s&bwmo=&fr2=seo-rd-se8. https://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/search?p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.exhibitdeal.com%2F&bwm=i&bwms=p&bwmf=u&fr2=seo-rd-se9. http://www.bigoakinc.com/1.5.4 Finding the Perfect Link - SEO Tip Week 21 (2007-05-25 07:04)[1] This week’s SEO tip gets to the heart of the linking question. We know we need links, but whatkind of links? (See our article on [2]Dissecting Links) Well, what if we could choose a link to have all thequalities that would benefit our site? This ”perfect link” would benefit our SEO efforts, and it would be use-ful at driving traffic through clicks as well as inflating our link popularity and increasing our search enginerankings. Of course, this is can be subjective and I always welcome differing opinions, so if you feel I’vemissed something, please add your comments to this post.The anatomy of a perfect link:• It would be a simple HTML link as follows: <a href=”•http://www.yourdomain.com/page.h-tml”•>keyword phrase</a>.• The anchor text would would include keywords that are important to your site.• It would be part of a sentence, which would be part of a paragraph.• The content surrounding the link, and the entire page, would be on topic with your site.• It would reside on a site with a similar theme as your site.• The page would have links to other sites similar to your site.• It would be on a [3]trusted site, with the site itself having backlinks from many sites including .eduand .gov sites.• The link would drive direct traffic to your site...targeted, highly converting traffic.• It should be an [4]authoritative site.• The site the link resides on should be popular and well-read.I think you can also see why the perfect link is only slightly easier to find than [5]Bigfoot or [6]Nessie - muchof the link’s perfection is derived from the site and page where the link resides. The old adage in real estateapplies to link building too, it all about location, location, location!1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/newsletter/200701/link-building.php3. http://www.seobook.com/archives/000661.shtml4. http://www.webworkshop.net/seoforum/viewtopic.php?p=1457975. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1999/01/24/SC86886.DTL6. http://paranormal.suite101.com/article.cfm/the_search_for_nessiec 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 39
  • 41. BlogBook 1.6. June1.6 June1.6.1 Keep Fresh Content on Your Homepage - SEO Tip Week 22 (2007-06-01 20:15)[1] Adding fresh content to your site and your homepage is an often heard bit of advice from SEOconsultants and advice columns. Yes, It is a good idea to keep your content up-to-date and fresh, but usinginformation that isn’t pertinent to your site such as a weather feed or generalized information you can findon a host of other sites, it isn’t likely to draw much attention from the search engines. You need somethingmore substantial and more on topic with your site.Look for content that speaks to your audience. For example, maybe you own an SEO company and addingnew content to your home page looks like a good idea. Well, if you write a blog on a consistent basis thenyour own blog posts can become homepage content through an RSS feed. As a matter of fact we haveimplemented this very tactic today on our own home page. If you look at the [2]Big Oak homepage you willsee an area that is displaying an RSS feed of this blog ([3]SEO Blog) with a snippet from the two most recentblog posts. Now we have content that will change whenever this SEO blog is updated and most of the timethe posts will be on topic. The search engines will notice my home page changes frequently and visit moreoften and give our site a higher value because of this.If you aren’t an avid blogger, you can add content from other blogs or from search result and news feeds,but this can draw traffic from your site if your visitors follow links included in the third-party feeds.Problems can occur as fresh content can cause your rankings to change based on the content displayed,but these fluctuations are usually minor and the benefits outweigh the negatives. Keeping a watch on yourfresh content should be part of your strategy.Be creative and think about what content would be of use to your visitors. Think about adding newproducts to the homepage or specials that change frequently. The key is to stay vigilant and automation isgood answer. RSS feeds are a great way to do this and many shopping carts have the option to provide anRSS feed. Other ideas are writing tips, maybe [4]52 Industry tips in advance, that change out weekly. Theydon’t have to link anywhere and can simply be placed on the home page every Monday and so on. It isimportant to make it fun and easy, otherwise it will become a struggle especially if you are trying to providethe content yourself rather than displaying content from other sites or feeds. Be sure to get permission ifyou aren’t sure about copyright issues when using the content from other sites.Please pass along any ideas you have for keep your homepage fresh with relative content.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/Shell Harris (2007-06-02 13:10:19)Joel, We use a program called [1]CaRP from Gecko Tribe that pulls our RSS feed from our blog (or any RSS resource)and will place the pulled content anywhere you like. It is configurable and inexpensive. It is only for PHP though.I’m sure there are other programs like this for ASP if needed. But the idea is the same. Be careful and make sure thepulled content is not part of a javascript feed, it must be real html or else the spiders won’t read it.1. http://www.geckotribe.com/rss/carp/40 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 42. 1.6. June BlogBookjoel cohen (2007-06-02 12:50:50)Putting a summary of your recent blog post is a great idea to do to your homepage. Do you just add this in eachweek, or would you recommend inserting a widget of your blog post. Would a widget have the same SEO advantagesas opposed to just inserting text copy?? Thanks, Joel Cohen www.RestaurantMarketing.comjoel cohen (2007-06-02 13:23:31)You got me on the PHP and ASP bit. I”m just a marketing guy! Can you tell by looking if my blogwww.RestaurantMarketingBlog.com would be compatible to the Carp program?Shell Harris (2007-06-15 08:34:48)The best source for checking backlinks for me is Yahoo’s [1]Site Explorer. Yahoo is the most accurate.1. http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/Gavin (2007-06-05 18:51:41)Good article and very true. I have found that good content that update regulary can help with search engine place-ment. Just as long as the content is rich in keywords and relevant to your website, you will be fineSuchmaschinenoptimierung (2007-06-14 19:21:04)Can somebody tell me where i can get a ”realtime” backlink check for free for the SEO Results? I have the problemthat every backlink checker in the Search Engines gives a different result â⠬â¬S sometimes more than 500 + or-. Do you also know which is the best backlink checker in web for an SEO beginner? Thank you for your answer andgreetings.Shell Harris (2007-06-03 11:36:56)Your blog is using PHP so you can install CaRP on the your blog and push an RSS feed to it. If you want to pullblog posts from that blog you will have to have PHP installed on your destination server.1.6.2 Keep Current on SEO Techniques - SEO Tip Week 23 (2007-06-09 22:09)Obviously one of the most important parts of an SEO Company’s success is keeping up with the new trends,latest techniques and search engine news. The best way to do that is to read the best SEO blogs out there. Ihave listed some in my blogroll to the right. I hold them all in high esteem, and of course, I would recommendreading my own [1]SEO blog.SEO ForumsKeeping up to date with SEO forum browsing is also a good idea. Here are some of my favorites:• http://www.webworkshop.net/seoforum/• http://forums.seochat.com/• http://www.highrankings.com/forum/• http://forums.searchenginewatch.com/• http://www.sitepoint.com/forums/• http://www.seo-guy.com/forum/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 41
  • 43. BlogBook 1.6. June[2] Search Marketing Standard MagazineI have recently discovered something almost unheard of in the Internet world, a printed magazine that stillhas relevance. It is [3]Search Marketing Standard. I read my first issue this month and was impressed withthe wealth of information and the breadth of subjects covered.As an avid researcher and online reader it is refreshing to sit away from my desk, or outside, or at myhome, or anyplace other than my office, and read a printed document. There is something comforting evenin the this digital age about holding a glossy magazine and flipping casually through the pages. I even lookedat the advertisements, something we have trained our eyes to avoid online.Looking at a colorful magazine is one thing, finding it useful and informative is quite another. SearchMarketing Standard did a nice job in both areas.Search Marketing Standard (SMS)The issue of Search Engine Marketing Standard that I read (picture to the right) covered many topicsin the search engine marketing arena. Of course they had articles about search engine optimization andsearch engine marketing, but they also gave commentary about social media marketing, SEO certificationand a few other gems, including blogging and linkbaiting.One of the most useful items in this issue was a very informative listing of SEM training courses andcertification. I would have like to have seen a review of each course, but that could be very subjective,time-consuming and costly so I can understand the omission.I also felt a nice job was done bridging the sometimes enormous gap between beginners and profession-als in the SEO industry. It is something I try to do on this blog so I was pleased seeing SMS attempt thisas well.SMS also realizes a magazine without a website is a missed opportunity, so they have built a compan-ion site. While you can’t read the published articles (why would you subscribe if you could?) they certainlydon’t withhold information about the SEO tips and advice. The site is a useful tool for research with [4]help-ful blog posts.Yearly subscription to the magazine starts at just $15 for 1 year/4 issues for US-based readers and $20for international subscribers (shipping included). [5]Click Here to subscribe today, I recommend it.42 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 44. 1.6. June BlogBook1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/06/search-marketing-standard-magazine.jpg3. http://www.searchmarketingstandard.com/4. http://www.searchmarketingstandard.com/blog/2007/02/6-surefire-strategies-for-bringing-your-old-blog-posts-back-to-life.html5. http://www.searchmarketingstandard.com/subscribe.htmlJason (2007-06-25 22:43:33)I find it so hard to keep track and up to date in all the different forums. I’d also like to add wickedfire.com to the listfor seo discussion with attitude1.6.3 Underscores vs. Dashes - SEO Tip Week 24 (2007-06-15 15:58)[1] Spaces should never be used in a URL or file names because the space character gets translated to” %20” by the browser, and this can wreak havoc with both readability and statistics or analytics programs.The question then remains, which is better to use instead of spaces, underscores ” ” or dashes ”-”.As far as Google is concerned Big Oak consists of one word, ”Big Oak”, and Big-Oak consists of twowords, ”Big” and ”Oak”.The reason Google does not treat the underscore as a word separator is because Google was created byprogrammers who knew that programmers often wanted to search about programming. Many computerprogramming languages use the underscore character in such ways that CLASS is different from CLASS.Because of this, I always recommend using dashes instead of underscores in your filenames and URLs.Be careful not to use too many dashes in your domain name, as that could get your site flagged for otherreasons. I prefer to have a domain name with no dashes, and to use dashes where appropriate in the directoryand file structure.Example URL:[2]http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/Other things about Google to keep in mind when choosing filenames and URL structure.• There is no difference between lower-case and upper-case: big oak, Big Oak, BIG OAK, and biG Oakare all the same.• The ampersand ” &” is a word seperator: Big &Oak is treated as two words.• Singular words are not the same as plural words: oak and oaks are treated as different words.• Google cannot read words that are within other words: bubble will not be seen inside of bubblegum.As with any tip, keep in mind that it’s a combination of many factors which will ultimately decide yourplacement in the search engine rankings and quite often every little bit counts.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 43
  • 45. BlogBook 1.6. JuneUpdate: A TestI created a [3]test page to illustrate how Google reads words.Examples:A search for [4]Test travveran shows the sample page.A search for [5]Flibstopper Test shows the sample page. The two words are even highlighted in theURL. The word ”test” appears in the page title.A search for [6]travveran shows no results in Google. Google did not read my made-up word fromthe URL or content because it only appeared in phrases with underscores.A site search for [7]choosing colors shows all the pages in our [8]Out on a Limb section becausethose two words appear in the navigation on all pages.A site search for [9]”choosing colors” (in quotes) shows no pages because those two words do not ap-pear together in our site, choosing colors on the test page is treated as a single word.A site search for [10]”the blue pill” (in quotes) shows our test page since dashes are treated as wordseparators.A site search for [11]”bush seo” (in quotes) shows our test page since the ampersand ” &” also actsas a word separator.Similarly Google can find the page with [12]reality tv and [13]bubblegum, but it cannot find thepage with [14]bubble or [15]1971.Even though many of the stranger examples have little relevance to SEO, it’s a good idea to under-stand how Google reads and understands words.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/limb/my-flibstopper-test_travveran.php4. http://www.google.com/search?q=Test_travveran5. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Flibstopper+Test6. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=travveran&btnG=Search7. http://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.bigoakinc.com+choosing+colors&hl=en&filter=08. http://www.bigoakinc.com/limb/limb.php9. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+%22choosing+colors%22&btnG=Search10. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+%22the+blue+pill%22&btnG=Search11. http://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.bigoakinc.com+%22bush+seo%22&hl=en&filter=012. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+reality+tv&btnG=Search13. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+bubblegum&btnG=Search14. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+bubble&btnG=Search15. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+1971&btnG=Search44 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 46. 1.6. June BlogBookChris Alexander (2007-07-10 15:11:57)Using a single hyphen or even a couple hyphens in a domain name is perfectly fine. If you have a domain name with5 or more hyphens, then you could run into not only SEO problems, but usability problems as well. It’s my personalpreference not to use hyphens in domain names, because it’s easier to tell some one, ”Go to big oak inc dot com,”instead of saying, ”Go to big hyphen oak hyphen inc dot com.”Francisco Cheng (2007-06-29 08:29:53)I never completely understood why we use dashes instead of underscore. Now that I read your post, it really makessense.Wordpress Advice (2007-07-10 14:44:59)I must ask why having a hyphen in your domain name is a bad idea, while it is not bad for filenames. I heard thisfrom others as well. I have a single hyphen in my domain name. Is that bad ? or you just consider having more thenone as bad ?Chris Alexander (2007-06-25 11:34:02)Steven, I wouldn’t worry about the number of hyphens in the blog post title or file names. I was warning againstregistering a domain name with too many hyphens. For example, making your domain name something like search-engine-optimization-seo-website-design-application-developmen t-services.com is probably a very bad idea in manyways.Wordpress Advice (2007-07-09 22:28:40)Two Thumbs up. You made me a fan. I guess I have to read the rest of your advice for the last size months.Steven (2007-06-22 18:10:22)Chris, you mention that too many hyphens are not a good thing, and I agree. Most blog posts, including mine, haveseveral hyphens but the search engines seem to still index and find the pages. Do you think there is any harm in blogURLs including hyphens?MorganLighter (2007-06-16 20:59:36)Chris - Thanks for the tips on using ”-”, ” ” and ” &” as well as upper and lower case. I learn something everyday -Thanks again.1.6.4 SEO Titles, Using the Title Tag - SEO Tip Week 25 (2007-06-22 05:35)[1] Page titles are one of the most important parts of any web page, especially when performing searchengine optimization. A page title is located at the very top of your browser’s window. It can bring trafficin abundance or completely isolate your site. Knowing how to properly word a page title is critical to yoursite’s SEO success. Let’s look at how page titles can be used to increase your site’s traffic.Snowflakes and TitlesIt is said no two snowflakes look exactly the same. Well, the same should be said for page titles on your site.Every page on your site should have a different focus from the other pages on your site, or you are re-peating yourself and duplicating content. So if all your pages are telling a different story, shouldn’t they allhave a different title? And that title should effectively reflect the content of the page.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 45
  • 47. BlogBook 1.6. JuneMissing an OpportunityIn my daily web searches, I see many missed opportunities with poorly titled web pages. Pages simply named”Untitled” or ”Untitled Document” can be found in the millions (79 million were found in a Google search).Search engines depend on titles to gather information about your web pages. And a page title without aunique description does not help the search engines - in fact, a generic page title makes the page nearlyimpossible to find...Putting Your Company Name in the Title TagI’m not against putting your company name in your page title - after all, it will help build brand awareness.But, I am against putting only your company name in the title and until you become a household name, Iwould suggest putting your company name at the end of your title. The focus of your web pages should beon what people would search for to find your company. In other words you want targeted keyword phrasesin the title. Let me give an example:If your company name is ”Miller & Sons” and you sell fishing equipment near Whitefish,Montana you should not limit your title to ”Miller & Sons”. Instead try ”Fishing Rods & Reels inWhitefish, Montana - Miller & Sons”. With this you are netting traffic searching for your product,your location and your company name. Keeping the location in the name is very important ifyou are serving only a regional or local market.Let Your Copy Be Your GuideWhen deciding on your page titles, read the page first and let that guide your decision. If you can’t confinethe theme of your page copy into a concise page title, you may need to break the copy into more than onepage.If you sell toys on your site, your page copy should have the keyword ”toys” and so should your pagetitle. Even better it should include what type of toys. Do you sell dog toys? Cat toys? [2]Children’s toys?Your title should convey this. Adding in other possible search terms is also a good idea. An example of atoy site home page title could be ”Children’s toys and games - toys for boys and girls of all ages” You haveyour most important keyword, ”toys,” listed twice and have added some other important keywords such as”games,” ”boy” and ”girl.”Suppose one of the sub pages of your toy site showcases Leap Frog’s Discovery Ball. What type of toyis this? It’s an educational toy and you should use that in your title along with the actual toy name. Thisgives you an opportunity to be found in the search results for the toy name, the popular toy company andthe heavily searched key phrase ”educational toy.” A title catering towards SEO for this example would be:”Leap Frog Discovery Ball - Educational Toys”. Since the more targeted term is the name of the toy you putthat first. Educational Toys would be shown first on a category page.Now that you have integrated your keyword phrases from your page copy into your title, you’ll find thatgetting found in the search engines is a much easier task.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.sillyasstoys.com/Business Blogger (2007-06-23 10:20:23)Great tips that every blogger should follow.46 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 48. 1.6. June BlogBookWeb Design Lincolnshire (2008-04-01 09:44:43)Page titles are very important if done correctly you can make the difference on your search engine rankings.1.6.5 Click Here For More Information - Bad Text Links - SEO Tip Week 26(2007-06-29 19:28)If you have been following this blog or looking into SEO you know how very important [1]building linkscan be to your site’s success in the search engine rankings. Link building involves two types of links: Linkspointing to your site (external linking), and links on your site pointing to other pages of your site (internallinking). While we don’t always have the ability to control external linking, a poorly worded internal linkis inexcusable. The single, easiest and least low effort thing to remember is to make your links descriptive.If that is too much to remember, then just remember this, no links should be labeled click here,” ”moreinformation,” ”read more” or any other variation of these words.I realize this might bring disagreement from the user experience community but I think we can all agree thatyour average user doesn’t need to be told to click a link and if it isn’t obviously a link (underlined) you havebigger problems on your site with usability.Every time I see a ”click here” link I shake my head at the wasted link opportunity that is being lost.You probably know how powerful link text can be in helping your rankings so it shouldn’t be a surprise tofind that the site that ranks for the term ”click here” doesn’t even have those words within the text of thepage that is ranking for ”click here”. Care to guess what company’s site is ranking for it?I’ll give you a hint; you’ve most likely downloaded the application and probably more than once. Thesite, or page actually, ranked number one for the term ”click here”is the [2]Acrobat Reader download page.Make sense? This clue might help: [3]Click here to download Acrobat Reader. This proves the power of thetext in your link, so why waste it with a non-descriptive textual link?I can provide thousands of examples, but let’s look at a few examples where a descriptive text link would bemuch better.• [4]Prevent Blindness Home Page I found six instances of the phrase ”Find out more here”. I’ll use oneexample from the home page:Early Detection Key to Preventing Vision Loss from Glaucoma More than 2 million Ameri-cans over the age of 40 have glaucoma, but many of those living with the disease don’t even knowit. - [5]Find out more HEREInstead, remove the ”Find out more HERE” and place the link on the headline text and bestof all it doesn’t require any rewriting:[6]Early Detection Key to Preventing Vision Loss from GlaucomaMore than 2 million Americans over the age of 40 have glaucoma, but many of those living withthe disease don’t even know it.• [7]Apple’s iPhone Page Being the huge Apple fan that I am it pains me to point to them as a badexample, but the new iPhone page is just that, a bad example. On this page I count five ”read more”links and one ”learn more”•. It can be argued that Apple doesn’t need SEO help for the iPhone, butthe principal and lost opportunity still applies.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 47
  • 49. BlogBook 1.6. June• [8]Joint Commission Home Page I count five ”read more”• links, incredibly listed below descriptivetitles without a link. What better way to get listing for their top stories than linking to them withkeywords in the story? Placing the link on the headline would solve this, much like we suggested forthe Prevent Blindness site.• [9]Burst Media Contact Page One of the more ridiculous offenders of the ”click here” mistake.Making simple changes would have helped all of these sites make better use of their internal linking as wellas helped with their site’s ranking for the words in the link.Of course, going beyond the decision to not use useless text links and thinking about the best keywordsand phrases to use will help even more. A few seconds, or better yet, a few minutes applied to thinkingabout your internal, contextual linking can bring in great rewards. Take the time and...Think before youLink!1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/linking-building/2. http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html3. http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html4. http://www.preventblindness.org/5. http://www.preventblindness.org/news/releases/121906_1.html6. http://www.preventblindness.org/news/releases/121906_1.html7. http://www.apple.com/iphone/8. http://www.jointcommission.org/9. http://www.burstmedia.com/about/contact.aspWordpress Advice (2007-07-10 14:53:37)90 % of wordpress blogs utilize their front page with more tag. This result in a teaser of the story. Although the titleis made a link as well, but do you think using more tags like this is bad as well. I don’t see more tag used on yourfront page. Would it not duplicate contents in some areas of your site or have you taken care of that ? [1]When ProsGet It Wrong | Using More Tags1. http://contents-magic.com/21/wordpress/robotstxt-when-pros-get-it-wrong/Shell Harris (2007-07-10 18:11:24)I have to admit that I change my opinion of using the more link sometimes. My last opinion is to only use it when Ihave a particularly long blog post. I use it then so I am not monopolizing my blog home page with one post. I don’tworry about duplicate content because it only stays on the home page for a week or two and there is so much othercontent on the home it doesn’t get flagged as duplicate content or if it does it is only for a short time. In the endI’d rather have the whole article available on the home and sent in the RSS feed. It is a personal preference and fortoday, I stand by it. ;-)Billy (2007-07-01 15:18:21)Certainly easy to point out to clients on what’s wrong with their unoptimized link anchors, but it is hard for themto implement your recommendations because high level management like to treat their website visitors as idiots (whoneed to be directed to click here).Mike Belasco (2007-07-16 22:15:26)I’ve also seen this taken the extra step. Let’s say for management you need to keep the click here link. If you adda ’keyword rich’ link as in the examples here and then implement the ’click here’ in Javascript, the search engineswill really only count the text link as the link, and ignore the JS implementation. I believe I learned this from Leslie48 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 50. 1.7. July BlogBookRhode who created optilinkShell Harris (2007-07-02 12:06:02)Billy, Yes, we often run into management that will have their own ideas about what is best, but gentle reminders thatthey are paying us to help them can work. Sometimes though, they don’t. All we can do is keep trying.Marti (2007-07-01 04:50:25)If anything, putting a proper link text is recommended for usability and consistency. Not everyone ”clicks” to activatea link (some tap with a stylus, some use a keyboard and it seems fingers are all the rage now) and more importantlythis sort of text doesn’t really help you figure out what the link target is.1.7 July1.7.1 Flat Site Architecture is SEO-Friendly - SEO Tip 27 (2007-07-06 11:56)Why you should use a flat site architecture rather than a deep, or nested, site architecture if SEO is impor-tant to your site?[1] In my previous life as a website designer and HTML developer I loved to have a folder/directory foreverything. While I’m not a organized person (ask my wife) I did like keeping my files structured in clearlylabeled directories. So nesting directories 4 or 5 levels deep was common practice. When I transitioned toan [2]SEO specialist my ideas on structuring files and site architecture began to change and here is why.A flat site offers quick access to all the pages within the site. A minimal number of clicks are neededto find all the pages within your site, usually no more than three clicks is ideal. According to the views ofthe search engines (SEs), less clicks mean higher importance. The view of the SEs are that more importantinformation will be easier to reach. Home page information is the most important, one click from the homepage is secondary information and two clicks is tertiary information and so forth.Think of it like bodies of water. Your home page is the ocean and off of the home page are large riversand then smaller rivers, then streams, then creeks and brooks and finally the smallest trickle of water is allthat is left. Don’t let you products, services or information be at the end of the trickle, drying up eventually.Closer to the ocean is always better and that is how the search engines will rank your pages too.I’ve seen some site place everything in the root folder and this isn’t good practice either. Structure your sitesas to what makes sense, but be aware that more clicks can mean less viewers, both for search engine trafficand visitors on your site.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/our-company.php#shellShell Harris (2007-07-08 17:43:04)Urbanist, Google will spider your entire site unless you instruct them otherwise. You can code your xml sitemap withnumbers relating to the importance of each page. If you have the time to do it it can’t hurt but with a large site it canbe time consuming. Building external links to important pages may be a more reliable options as Google will noticemore links and usually give more importance to those page.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 49
  • 51. BlogBook 1.7. JulyShell Harris (2007-07-08 17:50:39)Susan, if you are using Wordpress, which is what I know and recommend you can set up your permalinks to beat the top of the the site architecture. You’ll notice on our blog we follow this convention for our posts (Ex.[1]www.bigoakinc.com/blog/create-a-website-sitemap-seo-tip-week- 6/). I looked at your blog and is appears to beset up this way as well. Everything looks good and I don’t see that you need to change anything. Your directorystructure is flat and Google has almost 400 pages indexed for your site. Rest easy, you have done well. Thanks forthe mention on your site and I do love Stumbling.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/create-a-website-sitemap-seo-tip-week-6/Michael Haislip (2007-07-17 14:26:36)Flat architecture is good usability, too. I hate going to site with nested directories and getting lost. My first instinctis to hack off the extraneous parts of the URL in an attempt to get back to some sort of navigational element. But,usually, I get a 404 because most servers are set to not display directory content by default. Was that too complex?It makes sense in my sleep-deprived brain.Susan (2007-07-08 16:14:19)I understand that a flat structure can certainly help with fewer clicks, less muss and fuss etc. what I don’t get is howthis can be applied to a blog, or more intimately my blog. I am sitting here thinking that everything is really no morethan 3 clicks away. The homepage links to all the archives, categories etc. Sorry not trying to be dense just trying tosee how I can apply this tip to my particular situation. Thanks. I would like to thank you for making my stumblingthat much more enjoyable. Your blog made the [1]Life Is Risky Blog Stumbling for today! (Note: The post is updatedas I am stumbling. If you don’t see your site listed check back!)1. http://lifeisrisky.com/blog-stumbling-8-july-07/Urbanist (2007-07-08 03:41:07)Good advice - but what do you think about submitting something like a Google Sitemap in order to clarify what areimportant vs. redundant pages on a site. Do you think that helps them sort through things and give more importanceto what is important to your site?Marios Alexandrou (2007-07-28 11:09:39)Unless I misread this post, it sounds like you’re talking about two different issues with a flat architecture. Whendiscussing architecture you can look at the folder structure and you can look at how many clicks something is awayfrom the home page. If something is in 4 sub-folders, but requires just one click from the home page, would you saythe site has a flat architecture? I believe a while back folder depth mattered, but now it’s largely about click depth.Shell Harris (2007-07-28 21:35:29)For SEO purposes I am referring to the depth of your sub-folders. When we began our work with Snagajob.com thatis something we changed immediately with good results. There were items that were one click from the home pagebut 4 levels deep when looking at the URL. That is not good for SEO. Keep your important pages as close to the rootas you can with minimal clicks to get there.1.7.2 Research Your Competition with Yahoo Site Explorer - SEO Tip Week 28(2007-07-13 09:55)[1] I’ve got a simple [2]SEO tip today. As an SEO Company we are always doing competitive research.Many of our clients are astounded at the wealth of information that can be discovered using Yahoo’s [3]SiteExplorer especially for competitive link research. Site Explorer can help you track down the links pointingto your competition and allow you to contact those same sites and request or pay for a link to your site.50 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 52. 1.7. July BlogBookYahoo’s search engine also provides information about competitor backlinks. You can find tools to dothis for you but going to [4]Yahoo! Search and typing in the following commands will work just as well.• If you are looking for web pages that link to multiple competitor, usually you will find good backlinkpages like this, you would type in: linkdomain:competitor1.com, linkdomain:competitor2.com• We also should all know how important .edu and .gov links can be to our site. So why not look forcompetitors who have these links. I’ll give an example as if I was looking. I would type in a keywordsuch as ”seo” and then do a search for only .edu domains. I would type in: [5]seo site:.edu Replace the.edu with .gov for government backlinks.Of course there are many other things you can do for research and seeing what advanced options are availablecan be a great catalyst so be sure to view the [6]advance search options in Yahoo! for more ideas.Google also has [7]advanced search but I think Yahoo! does a better job with options and functionality,especially when it comes to researching backlinks.Please send any suggestions or add them to the comments on this SEO tip. We are always looking fornew ways to improve our SEO research methods.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/4. http://search.yahoo.com/5. http://search.yahoo.com/search?n=10&ei=utf-8&va_vt=any&vo_vt=any&ve_vt=any&vp_vt=any&vd=all&vf=all&vm=p&fl=0&p=seo+site:.edu6. http://search.yahoo.com/web/advanced7. http://www.google.com/advanced_search?hl=enWordPress Advice (2007-07-14 08:09:14)Probably this is th only area in which yahoo has a lead over Google. Google does not give you accurate results, Iknow that is on purpose. As Google want to create a mist around the way they index. I had been only using yahooto check back links for a few of the domains. but combining two domains in one query is new to me.Free SMS Andy (2007-07-16 01:18:30)I’ve found Yahoo Site Explorer extremely useful for searching my competitors backlinks. The Google search seemsbroken in comparison The challenge though is trying to get your own links back from those sites! Any tips on that?Turism (2007-07-23 08:49:58)Until I read your post, I never used yahoo for these kind of queries. After reading I gave it a try and it really gives adifferent result, and I think more accurate results than Google.Shell Harris (2007-07-26 10:13:27)Free SMS Andy, The big challenge IS getting links from your competitor’s backlinks. We do all that we can startingwith an email or a phone call (Yes, you can call people to request links). If an exchange is appropriate that can workas well. Offering them content such as a article that would be useful for them is a good idea and can have links toyour site within and finally offering a financial reward is often accepted for placing a link.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 51
  • 53. BlogBook 1.7. Julym7mmad (2008-02-16 00:07:45)Really helpful information , Thanks .1.7.3 Google’s Supplemental Results - SEO Tip Week 29 (2007-07-20 18:19)[1] Google is indexing more pages now then ever before, but that’s not always a good thing. Sometimesthese pages get sent to the [2]supplemental index instead of the main index. It’s perfectly normal for mostsites to have some pages in the supplemental index, but if your main pages (and especially your home page)get sent to the supplemental index you’ll likely not see much traffic from Google any more.My site’s listed in the supplemental results, what does that mean?As Google states, ”Supplemental sites are part of Google’s auxiliary index.” Google will always show resultsfrom their main index before showing results from the supplemental index. This means that supplementalpages will almost never show up for searches, and will only show up for super specialized searches if few orno results come from the main index. With so many blogs and tag pages out there, even [3]crazy many-wordsearches will bring back at least a few non-supplemental results.How did my site get in the supplemental index?One way pages end up in the supplemental index instead of the main index is a lack of PageRank (PR). Thiscould be because you orphaned the page (no [4]links pointing to it), the page lies too many clicks away fromyour home page, or your home page itself has a very low PR. If this is the case, you should work on your[5]link building to those important pages of your site and build up their PageRank.The other way your pages end up in the supplemental index is by having [6]duplicate content on yourpage. This could be because you used the same manufacturer written product description that dozens ofother sites use, you copied content from another website, or your pages have very little content and too muchtemplate which is duplicated on all pages. If this is the case, try writing unique content or changing yourtemplate so it doesn’t have the same elements on every page.I changed my pages, what’s next?Now that you’ve fixed your pages, it can be a long and hard process for getting them out of the supplemen-tal index because the supplemental spider doesn’t come along very often. You should create or edit your[7]Google sitemap XML file and hope that will be enough. If that doesn’t work, try changing the name(URL) of those pages and delete the old file.Feel free to add your own observations about supplemental results here, we’d love to hear your stories.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.google.com/intl/en_extra/webmasters/faq.html#label3. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rlz=1B2GGGL_enUS175US175&q=purple+butterflies+blue+tables+clowns+jumping+one+foot+juggling+peaches+bowling+pins+grapes+star+wars+joss+whedon+is+my+master+now&btnG=Search4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/internal-linking-seo-tip-week-5/5. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/finding-the-perfect-link-seo-tip-week-21/6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/every-web-page-should-be-unique-seo-tip-week-14/7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/sitemap-support-from-msn-yahoo-and-google/52 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 54. 1.7. July BlogBookKirkwood (2007-07-25 15:37:31)If you delete the old pages and rename them, should you 301/302 them for those who do happen to stumble ontothem? Or would that just keep them stuck in the supl. ??Shell Harris (2007-07-28 21:42:29)I can give you tip that I did for a pet site of mine, [1]Smoothie Recipes. I had the same problem, about 95 % of mypages were supplemental. I did three specific steps which helped dramatically. I have over 300 recipes on the site, butI have almost 100 pages in the normal index, a huge increase. Here are the tasks I did which I think really helped: Istarted pointing links to some interior pages (recipes) by using a random post plugin. It places random post links onevery page. I created a most popular blog post page, such is on this site as well if you look in the top nav. This alsocreates nice links to old posts and helps show visitors what is popular. And finally I made sure all my pages have adifferent meta description. Try these tactics and let me know how it works for you. Good luck!1. http://www.smoothieweb.com/Some Guy (2007-07-27 17:38:16)I had a bunch of pages in the supplemental index and assumed it was due to Wordpress’ structure. I created agood robots.txt, optimized titles, created 301 redirects. Slowly - slowly - google began properly excluding pages inaccordance with the robots.txt file - but still, several weeks later, my supplemental count is horrible - sometimes 90%. I guess it just takes a really long time to shake them out.Chris Alexander (2007-07-24 12:23:44)Hello WordPress Guru, That is a problem many blogs face. I’ve seen some large blogs with 90 % of their indexedpages be in the supplemental results index. There used to be [1]a method for easily checking your supplemental pagesvs. main indexed pages in Google, but Google seems to have stopped that functionality. A [2]site search on yourdomain shows 44 pages indexed & by my count 15 of those are in the supplemental index. That’s a pretty good ratio.1. http://www.seobook.com/archives/002047.shtml2. http://www.google.com/search?q=+site:contents-magic.com&num=100&hl=en&lr=&as_qdr=all&filter=0WordPress Guru Advice (2007-07-24 11:29:57)The duplicate content issue is what keeps me awake at night. Since WordPress creates many URLs to reach the samecontents I used to think that I get penalized. Though there are some who say that it is only a penalty when you havecontents duplicated outside the domain. What do you think ?Shell Harris (2007-07-25 15:47:59)Using a 301 permanent redirect is this safe and wise choice here. Sometimes you can do a 302 in the beginning andthe change to a 301 after the new page gains popularity, but I’d just do the 301 and move on.1.7.4 How to Find Relevant Links - SEO Tip Week 30 (2007-07-27 08:02)[1] SEO companies have two major functions when working with their clients: optimize the site contentand finding quality, relevant links. So please forgive me if you already know this simple yet effective [2]SEOtip, I’m sure those new to the SEO game will find it helpful. This tip on [3]link building will help you findlink opportunities but it will be up to you to acquire link placement.I am posting this tip in response to a question I receive on a continuing basis from perspective clients.How do you find links?c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 53
  • 55. BlogBook 1.7. JulyWe have many methods but the simplest way to find links, that aren’t paid links, is to search for them.Searching with the right terms will increase your efficiency and success in securing the maximum number oflinks in the shortest time. What are these terms? I’ve listed some of the search terms we use to find goodlinking sources. Of course there are many others to try but this list should get you started.Search Terms to be used with your keyword or phrase:• Add URL• Links• Resources• Related sites• Related urls• Submit a link• Submit a site• Submit URL• Suggest a link• Suggest a site• Suggest URL• Suggest an URL• Directory• Recommended Sites• Add Profile• Add Site• ArticleFor example, if you are trying to find quality links to help market your website which is selling pet turtles(We bought two, Bear and Grylls, while on vacation last week.) you would type into the Google search boxsomething like this: ”add url” + pet turtles. It would give you these results [4]Links for Pet Turtles. Thepage shows five promising link opportunities that are already in the Google index. From here you can trymore of the search phrases and then try different keywords and phrases to match with them.There are also free tools that will help in finding backlinks. Some that I like are:[5]http://www.webconfs.com/backlink-builder.php[6]http://tools.seobook.com/general/link-suggest/54 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 56. 1.8. August BlogBookIf you have any other tips on finding links, please share by commenting, we are always looking for newand better ways to do our jobs.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/ten-great-link-building-idea-sites/4. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=RGq&q=%22add+url%22+%2B+pet+turtles5. http://www.webconfs.com/backlink-builder.php6. http://tools.seobook.com/general/link-suggest/Cheap Web Hosting Phil (2007-07-29 16:33:39)That’s a very comprehensive list of the different search terms. I only ever searched for submit link and add url/link.Thanks!WordPress SEO Advice (2007-07-29 16:21:09)Well, I guess finding the relevant pages in the age of Google is not the biggest problem. the real problem for me ishow to persuade people to actually link to me.SEO Specialist (2008-01-23 05:34:38)Found you by searching for ”how to find relevant links seo” and thats exactly what i found, Thanks1.8 August1.8.1 How to Improve Local Search Results - SEO Tip Week 31 (2007-08-03 11:42)[1] In SEO, local search should never be overlooked. It can provide a boost in traffic has a highertendency to convert more visitors to customers since most people prefer working with local companies, evenSEO companies.Here are some factors that Big Oak SEO feels are important and should be considered when tryingto get higher rankings for your site, whether or not you are marketing to a national or local market. I havetried to list them in order of importance but it really depends how important local traffic is to your site.Location in the Title of your PagesIncluding your city and state, especially if you are counting on local customers is imperative. Don’t overdueit, but be sure to include it. I talk about this in detail on my [2]SEO Titles: Using the Title Tag post.Link Building with City and State KeywordsWhen building links to your site, include some with local terms like we do in this example: [3]RichmondVirginia Search Engine Optimization Company. You get the idea.Tell the Search Engines Where You WorkThe physical location of your site should be on the footer of every page. If you work from home, get a P.O.box and list that address. It is important for the city, state and zip code be on every page.Submit Your Site to Google’s Local Business Centerc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 55
  • 57. BlogBook 1.8. AugustYou can’t get found in a search unless Google knows where you are. Submit your business to [4]Google’sLocal Business Center even if you don’t have a website...yet.Keep Your Contact Page ConnectedYour physical address should be at the top of the contact page, above your contact form. At the very leastit should be easy to find and accurate.Link to your address on the Google Maps and Yahoo Maps. For example, go to [5]Google Mapsand then do a search for you physical address. After finding your location you will see a ”Link to this page”link. Click that and then copy and paste that link on your contact page.Adding written driving directions will allow for many local keywords to be included so having thisin addition to a link to maps.google.com is a good idea.List Coverage AreaBig Oak SEO is located in Glen Allen, Virginia, but very few people have heard of or search for GlenAllen. We are in the [6]Richmond, Virginia area so we use Richmond in our footer and mention it on our[7]company page as well as other local locations. Try to include the metropolitan areas on your site if thatis what people will be searching for.Add Listings in Yellow Pages, Superpages & Similar SitesWhile I don’t often feel the cost is warranted for phone book sites, if you can get a free listing or a discountbecause you are already paying for a printed listing it can help to have a link pointing to your site from theonline listing.Provide a Local Phone number on Every PageIt is a no-brainer to have your 800 present at the top of every page, but be sure to list your local number inthe footer as well. Don’t forget to include the area code.List your Site in Directories for Local businessesSites like [8]Yelp.com and [9]Citysearch.com are good places for local businesses. They can also provide realtraffic and not just higher rankings. I’m looking more into Yelp and hope to write a post about them soon.Get your site or business reviewedI think this is undervalued in importance, but getting a few reviews from a site like CitySearch and Yelp isa good thing for search engine rankings. Submit your site and ask friends to review for you. Of course thisisn’t applicable to all businesses, but it should be part of the marketing plan if you count on local consumers.Google CouponsThis isn’t new but not many people are using it. [10]Google coupons was announced in August 2006. It mayhelp your ranking, but it can’t hurt, especially if you have actual cost savings to offer over your competition.Do you have any ideas or have any advice that has worked for you concerning local search. If so,send us an email or submit a comment to this post. We are always looking for new ideas to share.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-important-are-page-titles/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/4. http://www.google.com/local/add5. http://maps.google.com/56 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 58. 1.8. August BlogBook6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/richmond-virginia-seo.php7. http://www.bigoakinc.com/company/our-company.php8. http://www.yelp.com/9. http://www.citysearch.com/10. http://www.google.com/press/annc/maps_coupons.htmlUniversos Virtuais (2007-08-04 15:07:42)Shell, thank you for sharing this SEO tip. I am trying to learn about SEO. Here in Portugal we have some local SE,that have 50 % of the searches, the other 50 % are from Google. Yahoo just is known for advance internet users!!Have a great weekend!Brian Whaley (2007-08-09 15:50:35)This series of articles is fantastic! I have referred my readers to 52 SEO Tips as a primary resource for SEO Tips onmy blog, http://btw73.blogspot.com. Keep up the great work!Local Biz Bits (2007-08-04 11:02:29)These are great tips. Another idea is to create a separate busines profile page, which links to your main website.Shell Harris (2007-08-07 11:33:24)Adding a business profile page is a great idea. You can do this on other sites, but of course adding it to your ownsite is easiest of all. I can see it being used in addition to your About page. Good suggestion. Can anyone provide aexample? I did find this site with and about us page on Big Oak we added. http://www.aboutus.org/BigOakInc.com1.8.2 Google Supplemental Index Label Disappears (2007-08-09 15:40)Google representatives posted this on August 1st, ”Given all the progress that we’ve been able to make sofar, and thinking ahead to future improvements, we’ve decided to stop labeling these URLs as ”SupplementalResults.””Well, this isn’t good news. Google announced that the supplemental index label is being removed. Googleclaims, ”The distinction between the main and the supplemental index is therefore continuing to narrow,”but I’m still skeptical. This now means we won’t know which pages need help and which pages are doingwell. We use the supplemental label to help us see which pages need more attention as well as to see if apage can provide a quality link.The bottom line is this, the supplemental index will still be there, we just won’t know which pages arein and which pages out. Seems to me Google is providing less information and trying to keep SEO compa-nies and site owners in the dark.Supplemental Results are pages residing in Google’s supplemental index, a secondary database containingpages of less importance, as measured primarily by Google’s[1] algorithm.1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PageRankc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 57
  • 59. BlogBook 1.8. August1.8.3 Squidoo for Traffic & Link Building - SEO Tip Week 32 (2007-08-12 17:19)[1] Update October 29, 2007: Well, after a brief few months my first Squidoo pages have acheived PRvalues of 5 and 4. My Jean Grey Squidoo Lens is a PR5. So as a high PR link building service Squidooworks quite well.As an search engine optimization consultant I sometimes have a hard time deciding what is the best use ofmy time. Research, link building, writing or what have you. Well, this week I did more research than usualand found a site that I had heard about, but had yet to fully explore: [2]Squidoo. What is Squidoo? Well,to put it simply, it is a collection of web pages that users can build on any topic, and I mean any topic thatyou can imagine. And if you can’t find it, you can create a new page on Squidoo yourself. Squidoo says youcan do it in under 5 minutes, but you’ll want to take longer to build a respectable page, or ”lens” as theycall it.[3] Once you do you can add modules that let you make money fromaffiliate sales to online stores such as Amazon and Overstock. I don’t know how much of a money makingopportunity it is and I would dare say you [4]can’t make a lot of money with Squidoo, but it did give mesome ideas on how to use it for SEO purposes. As a business owner and website owner, you can use Squidoofor two important tasks to help your website: link building and visitor traffic.Testing SquidooI decided totest this out and I built two lenses for fun. I like smoothies, so I tried my hand at creating a [5]smoothiedrink lens to support my personal [6]smoothie recipe blog. It was simple to build and I followed the advicefor getting the word out and then spent the next 4 days investing a few spare moments here and there,adding new content and pulling information from my smoothie recipe blog and now I have a fairly largelens, compared to most. As of today (8/12/2007) there were over 213,000 lenses on Squidoo. My smoothielens was ranked #132 and at times has been as high as 128 with less than 8 hours of work total over oneweek. The second lens is for a favorite comic book character, [7]Jean Grey (Phoenix) from the X-men andhas done for pure entertainment and even that has achieved a rank as high as #376. The lenses were fun tobuild and I enjoyed both immensely.Getting Traffic from SquidooOkay, big deal on my ”success” within Squidoo, it hasn’t earned a single cent yet and might notever. I have many links on my smoothie lens pointing to my smoothie blog and the good news is that theselinks have driven more traffic to my smoothie blog in the last week than all other incoming site trafficcombined. The reason it has been successful is the fact that the Squidoo lens I created is already showingup in the search results, after less than a week, for terms related to smoothie recipes. ([8]See results.) Soit is driving traffic to my smoothie blog and could be doing the same for your business. If you sell toysyou may want to create a Squidoo lens one of your products like yo-yos. The idea is to create a lens aboutsomething specific so your lens can rank for it and then link to your site. Which brings me to my otherreason for creating a lens. My SEO heart practically skips a beat.Link Building with SquidooAs any SEO company can tell you, [9]link building is the most time-consuming and hardest part ofour jobs. Everything come down to link building. That is what increases your rankings, helps people findyou and so forth. If you have an SEO company working for you now and they aren’t putting forth a majorityof their time finding and placing links for you, it is time to move on. With Squidoo you get an awesome link58 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 60. 1.8. August BlogBookbuilding resource where you control the anchor text in the link, where the link points to, where it lives onthe page and what is written around it. It also comes from a high PR site. It is almost the exact definitionof my idea of the [10]perfect link. If you look at my smoothie lens you can see dozens of links pointing tomy smoothie blog. And not links just to the homepage, but [11]deep linking to internal pages which areimportant links very difficult to get usually. Well, with Squidoo you can make many deep links which willhelp your site’s search engine visibility and increase rankings to those deep pages. One-way, keyword-rich,high-quality links are all made easy with Squidoo. If you spend a little time with your lens you may soonsee it increase to a [12]PR 4 or [13]PR 5 webpage on its own and we know how hard PR 4 and 5 links canbe to get on our own.Google & SquidooOf course, with all good things there come people who look to ruin it by misuse. Well, the samecan be said of Squidoo. Many spammers have tried and are trying to create a glut of spammy pages onSquidoo for the purposes of SEO. Google saw this and minimized the importance of Squidoo but in returnSquidoo has made spamming harder and set the bar higher for a Squidoo lens in hopes of getting morequality lenses. It looks as though Squidoo may have weathered the fury of Google and for the time I wouldrecommend highly creating a quality Squidoo lens to help your own site. Heck, create more than one if youneed it, but be good stewards if you do and create lenses that have weight of their own and are not a puremarketing ploy. Those lenses will be the most effective in the long run and help Squidoo remain a usefultool in your marketing tool belt.Final Thoughts on SquidooGive it a try, it will only take an hour or so, despite the 5 minute promise from Squidoo, and thensee what you think. We will be including it as part of our work for our clients, as we do with all newstrategies that can help. Of course, Google could decide they don’t appreciate the work being done bySquidoo members, Squidoo could decide to make all links not SEO-friendly (nofollow or redirects) or anynumber of SEO killing decisions, but until then I personally think it is a good use of a few hours.YouTube Video about Squidoo MarketingYou can find many videos on how to use Squidoo and here is one of the better ones I watched.<1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.squidoo.com/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/08/logo_h_sm.gif4. http://www.frommyexperience.com/using-squidoocom-for-profit.php5. http://www.squidoo.com/smoothies-lens/6. http://www.smoothieweb.com/7. http://www.squidoo.com/jean-grey/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/08/squidoo-smoothie.gif9. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-to-find-relevant-links/10. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/finding-the-perfect-link-seo-tip-week-21/11. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/deep-linking-seo-tip-week-4/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 59
  • 61. BlogBook 1.8. August12. http://www.squidoo.com/articlehowto/13. http://www.squidoo.com/laptopbag/SEO Beginner’s Blog (2007-08-16 15:50:31)Hi, very informative blog. Thanks for visiting SEO Practices Blog for beginners, we are a guide to the best searchengine optimization and marketing resources. I’m on squidoo, my user is seopractices, I have add some affiliate linksfrom books on amazon, I’m waiting to see the results.Andrew Christiansen (2007-08-17 16:53:56)nice read :)Hobo (2007-08-17 18:36:53)Nice article Shell. I used it for citation purposes a while back, but not to your extent. ShaunShell Harris (2007-08-19 18:15:47)Martin, we use two tools that can both do what I think you are asking. One is Web Position Gold, $150(http://www.web-positiongold.com/standard-web-position-gold.html) and the other is Internet Business Promoter,$250 (http://www.ibusinesspromoter.com/download/index.htm). Both do a lot more than just show ranking results.But they both have free demos to try. Good luck.Shell Harris (2007-08-19 18:17:08)Hi, Shaun. I always know I’ve done something good when you comment. Thanks for the compliment. Feel free topost a link to your Squidoo article.Xavier (2007-08-14 23:46:11)I’m enjoying reading this post! Thanks!Kimberly Dawn Wells (2007-08-13 17:07:10)Glad to see youâ⠬⠢re having fun with Squidoo. Keep up the great work!Shell Harris (2007-08-13 17:12:30)Hi, Kimberly (never Kim). Thanks for visiting my blog and I’m flattered that you took notice of my post. I amenjoying Squidoo and lenses such as your are a reason why. Keep up the great work as well.Louiss (2007-08-15 08:23:29)Thanks for this weeks tips. I have try to do links from Squidoo, but I still cannot see the effect, do I miss out anything?I just need at least get some backlink from them. Thatâ⠬⠢s all. Hope you can help me fix it up. my squidoo ishere: www.squidoo.com/bloggingsecretInkode (2007-08-19 00:36:18)Thank you so much for such a great article about using Squidoo for SEO. Goin to give it a go right now for marketinga clients site. But like you said, I can imagine it won’t be long till people ”ruin it by misuse”. CheersAngie Hartford (2007-08-25 12:47:39)This sounds so very cool! I can think of a couple of clients who could really benefit from this. Thank you.Martin (2007-08-15 02:27:40)Hello, can somebody tell my where i can find a seo tool which can show me the positions from a website (5, 10, 20Keywords)? Please give feedback to me. bye60 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 62. 1.8. August BlogBookAndy (2007-10-31 16:11:38)http://services-seo.net/pagerank-calculator/index.php?do=1 check how to get good PR.Pizza Köln (2008-02-19 10:06:05)Thanks for your great information. very very good.Squidoo Marketer (2008-03-06 03:38:16)I typically spend about 3 hours making each lens on Squidoo, $10-20 in social bookmarking services, and then I watchthe traffic pour in through Google. Once Squidoo imposes a nofollow tag I will simply take my content elsewhere andcontinue to make money, but once there are mandatory nofollow it will cease to be a profitable company in my honestopinion.Shell Harris (2007-11-11 22:44:53)Just a Guy, I took a look at your lens and that is a good start! Be sure to put a few more modules up and put somemore content on the lens. You are linking to your outside site correctly, although I would make all the links to thefull url (www.domain.com rather than domain.com). Keep an eye on your site’s traffic. You may see a nice jump invisits from your Squidoo lens.Shell Harris (2008-01-24 12:18:44)Dave - Traffic on all my Squidoo lenses dropped off about 20 % on average, but as high as 50 % my Jean Grey Lenswhich is currently ranked #45 overall. I get about 30 visitors per day. From my 13 lenses I get about $80 per month,but I don’t update them anymore. But they all have achieved PageRank and the links from the Squidoo lenses arethe real reason I created them, which support the ”main” sites. Google traffic was the biggest decrease of all sourcesso I believe Google isn’t ranking the lenses nearly as well anymore. Overall, still worth the 2-4 hours it can take tobuild a simple lens, especially for the deep links you can create.Dave @ Seo Blog (2008-01-24 16:26:28)Thxs for the response Shell ! Interesting the traffic dropped that much...it also looks like it are not really ’buyers’that are being redirected to your money site..guess the links are the only reason to create some Squidoo pages :) thesedays. DaveDomain (2008-01-29 03:54:58)Thanks for this information, it‘s very usefuljust a guy (2007-11-10 22:37:47)Shell, I’ve been putting this off for a while because I didn’t really understand the whole Squidoo thing. However,tonight I took the plunge and launched my [1]Going to Seminary Squidoo lens. We’ll see how it all pans out. Thanksfor the tip.1. http://www.squidoo.com/payingforseminary/just a guy (2007-11-12 11:56:04)Thanks for the advice. I’ll make the changes tonight. I was trying to figure out how to increase the pagerank of thelens. Any advice there? I’ve joined some groups that have good PR and posted blurbs with links to my squidoo lens.Any other ideas?quiel (2008-01-12 06:43:38)Wow! Amazing, your article gave me an idea about squidoo. Thanks! You’re a big help! I think I’m going to try it inthe near future to introduce myself and promote the site that I’m currently working on. I think I’m excited to createc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 61
  • 63. BlogBook 1.8. Augustmy own squidoo lens(page) after watching the video.Jeremy (2008-03-09 22:24:21)After reading your review of Squidoo and the process of setting up a lense i figured it was time to revisit Squidoo andtry out making a lense. I’ve noticed lenses in google results occasionally but there doesn’t seem to be a flood of themso it does seem like you need a pretty popular lense or a fairly niche topic. So i setup, ’Australian web design’ andshall see how it goes: http://www.squidoo.com/australianwebdesignShell Harris (2007-11-12 19:50:43)You are doing all the right things. Google just did a PR update at the end of October so you will have to wait a whileto see it change again. A good squidoo marketing (group submissions and commenting on other lenses) effort shouldbe enough to achieve a PR4 or PR3, but PR is only a number not a declaration of your page’s importance.Suchmaschinenoptimierung (2008-01-16 00:53:50)Great article, and great information, i got all my information about squidoo through your article thanks. But thevideo no longer exists :(Shell Harris (2008-01-16 12:24:18)I just checked and the video is playing fine for me. Just in case here is the actual url:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiR5BIX- RQYaprak Dökümü Fan Sitesi (2008-04-01 16:59:48)Great thank you very very much. Great Article. Keep up your great work!edwin (2008-02-27 05:32:53)I made my own lens a week ago, it is worth the effort, but don’t make the mistake thinking its a small effort. Buildinga well ranked lens takes some time. And there is the risk of Google forcing nofollow upon squidoo in the long run.Shell Harris (2008-02-27 17:24:06)We put at least 4 - 8 hours in making a decent lens. Yes, one day the dreaded nofollow tag may be inflicted, but Idon’t think so. Squidoo makes their money on increasing the page count and therefor increasing viewership. Addingnofollow might cripple the number pages being built and reduce traffic. I feel they’ll keep the nofollow out of theequation. Of course if a 800lb. Gorilla asks you to add it, you probably will. ;-)Just a Guy (2008-01-23 13:32:27)Shell, Just an FYI. After taking your squidoo tips my [1]seminary and [2]photography web hosting squidoo pages bothhave PR 3. Also, using a lot of the tips from your blog my [3]Going to Seminary website has a PR 4. As you say,”PR is only a number” but it feels good to see the effort pay off in such a short time. Thanks!1. http://www.squidoo.com/payingforseminary2. http://www.squidoo.com/photographywebhosting3. http://www.goingtoseminary.com/Dave @ Seo Blog (2008-01-23 18:43:31)Maybe a little late for a reply (when checking the original date of posting) but I would like to know if you still thinkthe same way about squidoo and if your test is still running, how about the traffic, did it change and how about theconversions ? It looks like squidoo is till doing fine in Google and they still didn t implemented the nofollow tag so itstill looks like a good Seo technique to use to get deeplinks to your site. Thanks ! Dave62 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 64. 1.8. August BlogBook1.8.4 How to Build Links with Flickr - SEO Tip Week 33 (2007-08-19 21:45)[1] If you read my [2]post about Squidoo last week you know I got addicted to it just a little bit. OurSEO company has started using Squidoo as a tool and sometimes one tool can lead you to another. Thisdiscovery was totally serendipitous. As I was trying to market my own Squidoo pages (lenses as Squidoocalls them) I had a thought on how to use [3]Flickr to build links. (Flickr is an online photo management,photo sharing web 2.0 site.) I had been placing some images on Flickr so I could then link to them from my[4]Squidoo page. Once all the images were in place I went back to Flickr to start naming them and addingdescriptions. Then I thought, ”Can I place text links in the descriptions?” And you what, I could and youcan too. Flickr allows you to place links in the photo descriptions and they are real HTML links that arefollowed by the search engines.I’m sure you can see the uses for this. Does you site sell products? Can you place thephotos on Flickr? If so, you should add your product photos and each photo should have a title, descriptionand link to that product. These links meet many of my [5]perfect link criteria especially since you controlthe anchor text of this one-way link. Of course you should always make sure the link makes since. If you areselling a bike, take a picture of the bike put it on your Flickr account and then link to that bike on your site.Flickr images are returned in search results and Google currently has 26 million pages cached so Flickrhas good search engine visibility.To further prove this works, do a search in Google for ’[6]dark phoenix costumes’. I’m a bit of an X-men fan and so I posted some artwork of the [7]Phoenix character which is the subject of my Squidoo page.As of August 19, 2007 you should notice that the #9 search result is my Flickr page I created and the #6result is for my Phoenix Squidoo page. The Flickr [8]Dark Phoenix Costume page only took one week to becached by Google and now a one-way link has been cached with keyword rich anchor text.Please don’t abuse or spam this technique but instead try to provide information for your customers withthe photo. I’m sure Flickr would have no problem turning all the links to redirects or nofollow links such asWikipedia. Don’t abuse, just use.Let me know if you have tried this already or what success you have had with this strategy.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/squidoo-link-building/3. http://www.flickr.com/4. http://www.squidoo.com/jean-grey/5. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/finding-the-perfect-link-seo-tip-week-21/6. http://www.google.com/search?q=dark+phoenix+costumes&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a7. http://www.squidoo.com/jean-grey/8. http://www.flickr.com/photos/byronshell/1081718611/Mr Handy (2007-08-29 14:33:06)You can do this at other photo-communities like pbase.com, too :) I agree that you shouldn’t abuse this thoughKimberly Dawn Wells (2007-08-21 22:16:32)Great tips for using Squidoo and Flickr! Did you know about our Photo Phights on Squidoo?http://www.squidoo.com/photophights/hqc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 63
  • 65. BlogBook 1.8. AugustWordPress Guru Advice (2007-08-22 19:26:08)This has been a great revelation. Thanks . The only practical problem seems to be that you have to have great photosfor Flickr to work for you. Lately I released a plugin on my site for Flickr that is really worth looking. It allowssearching for images right from your admin area .. and does more.Prepaid Tarif (2007-12-10 12:20:47)Great advise! Never thought about it until I read your article, I’m impressed.Jo (2008-04-01 05:48:39)Wow.. thanks for this one! Haven´t thought about building links with photo communities yet. Cool!Shell Harris (2008-04-01 15:22:20)This post is dated now and some of the things mentioned here aren’t passing link juice any longer. Check for no followwhen you look for link building opportunities on Flickr. Zoomr may get you more link juice but it isn’t as nice asFlickr in my opinion.1.8.5 Reviews Can Improve Your Local Search Rankings - SEO Tip Week 34(2007-08-25 20:12)A search engine optimization company can sometimes forget about the little guy. Sometimes working forweb sites who need search results for terms that have national competition can overwhelm you and blind youto the company who is competing for search terms in a local geographic area. I wrote a post on improvinglocal search results a few weeks ago and in doing so discovered a new tip: Add Reviews. Or better yet askyour customers to add reviews.[1] For example I have done a search for[2]Home Improvement in Richmond, Virginia. Click on the [3]screenshot to the right and you can see the#1 search result is a client of ours, [4]Creative Energy. You can also see they have 2 reviews listed. Localreviews can help boost your search engine rankings and if they are positive reviews they can boost your sales.imagine if you were looking at the results listed, wouldn’t you read the reviews? If they were positive youmight visit their site or give them call. Every advantage helps.64 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 66. 1.8. August BlogBookSo how do you add reviews? Visit [5]Google Maps and do a search for you business by name and yourcity and state. When you find your business click the more information link. (Or you may see a review linkto click from here, it depends on your search results). From there you will see a link to write a review. Youcan provide this link to customers and if they have a Google account, as many people do, they can add areview. You can also add reviews through other sites, Google will find them, such as [6]Yelp and your local[7]CitySearch.com, but they customers will need accounts to use these as well.So am I telling you to manufacture or make up reviews? No, of course not. But if you have clients who havegiven you a written letter or verbal review it might be worth it to ask them to post a review online. Givethem a coupon for future work or send them a gift of [8]Virginia peanuts. Don’t think of it as bribery, thinkof it as good customer relations.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/reviews-improve-local-search-rankings/creative-energy-search-results/2. http://www.google.com/search?q=home+improvement+richmond%2C+Virginia&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/08/creative-energy-search.png4. http://www.creativeenergyexteriors.com/5. http://maps.google.com/6. http://www.yelp.com/7. http://www.citysearch.com/8. http://www.vapeanuts.com/Shell Harris (2007-08-29 13:42:24)Thanks for the nice comments, Shawn. We have noticed it can take months to move up, but some of our clients movedin a few weeks. If you see upward movement, let us know about your success.Shell Harris (2007-08-29 13:44:53)Teresha, Thanks for a well-thought-out comment. You go beyond my simplistic SEO-focused post and get to the heartof a much bigger issue of company brand, which I can agree with whole-heartedly. Make sure the right address andphone number are being shown to your clients and potential clients.Paparazzzi (2007-08-29 16:30:56)That’s a very useful tip. Google Maps aren´t working fine yet, here in Portugal... but i think it´s just a matter oftime!Shell Harris (2007-08-26 10:29:54)Thank, Raymond. I feel you can go two directions with any blog. Talking about ideas and thoughts on the web orgiving ideas and thoughts on the web. I’ve been focusing on the giving of ideas this year. I’m glad you have noticed.Spread the word!shawn smith (2007-08-28 08:23:14)Nice tip Shell. I actually just did my first local business listing with google yesterday and was surprised to see it listedso quickly in the results, although it wasn’t very high. I think adding reviews could definitely help. P.S. - I like whatyou’re saying about customer relations - those peanuts are great!Teresha (2007-08-29 01:36:47)Interesting post. The most interesting part is that it’s the first I’ve seen that actually states this fact. Maybe otherssimply feel it’s a given, it should be. With so many sites, including our own business wiki, allowing customer reviewsit’s essential to educate your clients on why it’s important to ask happy customers to review as well as to ensure thatc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 65
  • 67. BlogBook 1.9. Septemberthey do it. Whilst I agree it’s now very important to have reviews on Google and Yahoo local, it’s just as importantthat small businesses check their listings in other online phone books to ensure a) their listings are correct (phonenumbers, maps, etc...) and b) what people are saying about them (assuming the OYP allows reviews). It’s simplybrand management but too few small businesses are aware of the need to monitor online business directories unlessthey have paid for the listing. Google, Yahoo and Yelp aren’t the only OYP, there are many and they are showingup in search engine results, often higher than the business’ website due to better optimisation. So it’s important thelistings are correct and reviews monitored.Money Blue Book (2007-08-26 01:20:24)Interesting..you postings tend to be different from the other SEO sites I’ve read. Just passing by.. - Raymondwww.moneybluebook.com1.9 September1.9.1 When to Use a 301 vs. 302 Redirect - SEO Tip Week 35 (2007-09-02 09:51)[1] There are two types of redirects you can use, a [2]301 and a 302. These numbers refer to the HTTPStatus Code returned by the server for a given URL. A 301 redirect tells the search engine that the page hasmoved permanently to the new URL. A 302 redirect tells the search engine that the move is only temporary,and you may decide to show content at the original location in the future without a redirect.301 RedirectsAll three major search engines handle 301 redirects the same, that is to say they ignore the orig-inal URL and instead index the destination URL. For example, [3]www.beekerfurniture.com uses a301 redirect to [4]www.hendersonsfurniture.com and Google, MSN and Yahoo all return the resultwww.hendersonsfurniture.com when searching for ”beeker furniture”. The word beeker doesn’t appear any-where on the hendersonsfurniture.com site, and [5]a site search in Google shows that only the home page hasany relevance for the word. Clicking on the Cached link in the site search results further shows that the wordonly exists in links pointing to the site, ”These terms only appear in links pointing to this page: beeker.”Those links Google is referring to are actually pointing to www.beekerfurniture.com and the 301 redirect ispassing along the relevance of the word beeker to hendersonsfurniture.com.301 redirects can be very powerful when you redesign your site and the URLs change, move to a differ-ent domain, acquire a new domain, or implement a URL rewrite. In most cases, this is the type of redirectyou want to use because you know exactly how the search engines will respond.302 RedirectsThe three major engines handle 302 redirects very differently, and because of this 302s are typically notrecommended.Google treats 302 redirects differently depending if they are on-domain or off-domain. An example of an on-domain redirect is [6]athletics.mlb.com which uses a 302 redirect to http://oakland.athletics.mlb.com/index.j-sp?c id=oak. If you search for ”[7]oakland a’s” in Google you will see that athletics.mlb.com is displayedin the results because links point to that URL, which in turn uses a 302 redirect to the destination page.This is a great example where 302 redirects can be used effectively, since the shorter URL looks much moreenticing in the results pages.66 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 68. 1.9. September BlogBookOff-domain 302 redirects would be ripe for hijacking situations if treated the same way. Because of this, inmost cases, Google will treat off-domain 302 redirects like 301s, where they will ignore the original URL andinstead index the destination URL. I say most cases because Google will sometimes determine that the 302is legitimate & index the original URL instead. An example of an off-domain redirect is [8]pets.roanoke.comwhich uses a 302 redirect to a third-party site http://www.gadzoo.com/roanoke/pets.aspx. In this case,Google determined that this was a legitimate use of a 302 redirect and displays [9]pets.roanoke.com whensearching for ”pets roanoke”.MSN treats 302 redirects exactly how it treats 301 redirects, it will always ignore the original URLand instead index the destination URL. A search for ”[10]oakland a’s” in MSN shows the URL oak-land.athletics.mlb.com/index.jsp?c id=oak in its results. And a search for ”[11]pets roanoke” showswww.gadzoo.com/roanoke/pets.aspx in its results.Yahoo takes the same stance that MSN takes, except that they reserve the right to make exceptions inhandling redirects. A search for ”[12]oakland a’s” in Yahoo shows the URL www.oaklandathletics.com in itsresults. (www.oaklandathletics.com also uses a 302 redirect to http://oakland.athletics.mlb.com/index.jsp?cid=oak) But a search for ”[13]pets roanoke” shows www.gadzoo.com/roanoke/pets.aspx in its results.There are very few times where you actually want a 302 redirect, although they are used more often than301s merely because most people don’t know the difference. 302 redirects are often the default redirectin website control panels, and JavaScript or Meta redirects will produce a 302 status as well. In certainsituations however, 302 redirects work wonders.As with all our tips, please use them responsibly. When in doubt, use a 301 redirct.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/how-to-do-a-301-redirect/3. http://www.beekerfurniture.com/4. http://www.hendersonsfurniture.com/5. http://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.hendersonsfurniture.com+beeker&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rls=GGGL,GGGL:2006-22,GGGL:en6. http://athletics.mlb.com/7. http://www.google.com/search?q=oakland+a%27s8. http://pets.roanoke.com/9. http://www.google.com/search?q=pets+roanoke10. http://search.live.com/results.aspx?q=oakland+a%27s11. http://search.live.com/results.aspx?q=pets+roanoke12. http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=oakland+a%27s13. http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=pets+roanokeArticlesGarage (2008-02-18 18:25:48)Using a meta refresh what header will return?Optimizare Seo (2008-01-14 12:43:09)I think there is a small mistake in your post regarding the pet 302 redirect..you say it shows the old site, but itshows the redirected to site..which is ok and what you explained before. Maybe you can modify that because is a bitconfusing thanks for the useful post Marius,c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 67
  • 69. BlogBook 1.9. SeptemberJumpions (2008-01-16 04:19:06)I had a 302 redirect for some time on my site but I was doing fine with Google. Do you know cases when Googletreated 302 redirects in the wrong way?Seo (2008-01-17 13:31:54)I am bit unsure about 302 redirects. Let’s say I redirect my domain with 302 to a bigger site with bigger traffic andall that. I am talking about how Google treats 302 redirects. So let’s say my site is showing up in the searches(thebad site)- like in the Oakland example. People will see my site listed but when they click they will get to the good sitedue to the 302 redirect. Or I am missing something here and the problem with 302 redirects was not about stealingtraffic? Thanks1.9.2 SEO Toolkit: Everyday SEO Tools - SEO Tip Week 36 (2007-09-09 17:13)[1] SEO consultants always have their favorite tools and a few months ago we hired a new employeewhich necessitated showing what SEO tools I like to use. That led me to come up with this list of my favoritetools for SEO. I wanted to list the tools I use most frequetly rather than a list of sites with large collectionsof SEO tools. Maybe that will be a future post.My SEO Toolkit:[2]SEOpenI use this dozens of times everyday for client and competitor sites. Provides some basic tools to helpwith search engine optimization. Including google backlinks, yahoo backlinks, PageRank check, http headerviewer, and more. All features are available by right-clicking on an open area of a web page, or by using theincluded toolbar. I wouldn’t leave home without it. You will need Firefox, but that shouldn’t be a problem.I can’t imagine an SEO consultant or SEO company not recommending Firefox over every other browser.[3]Keyword DiscoveryKeywordDiscovery compiles keyword search statistics from over 180 search engines world wide, to create avery powerful research tool. It has a free trial, but it is well worth the money to get full access.[4]WebPosition GoldWeb Position Gold offers a nice set of tools that we use for monitoring search results. I know it does muchmore than this, but we do most things manually around here. I like the way it displays the search resultsonline for our clients to see anytime they like.[5]Wordpress Blogging SoftwareAll of our clients, and this blog, run Wordpress. It is the BEST software for blogging in my opinion. Theablibity to add funtionality through plugins will always be the deciding factor, especially with so many plu-gins being created to support our SEO efforts.[6]SEO for FirefoxWant to know why Google or Yahoo! ranks pages? SEO for Firefox pulls in many useful marketing datapoints to make it easy get a more holistic view of the competitive landscape of a market right from the searchresults. You can turn it off and on easily.[7]Google Toolbar for FirefoxDo I really need to explain this one? Google search in your browser with lots of helpful toos, especially for68 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 70. 1.9. September BlogBookon-page optimization.[8]SearchStatusAdd-on for Firefox that displays the Google PageRank, Alexa rank and Compete ranking anywhere in yourbrowser, along with fast keyword density analyzer, keyword/nofollow highlighting, backward/related links,Alexa info and other SEO tools.[9]Google Webmaster CentralBe sure you have signed up all the sites you manage SEO for. This is very helpful for understanding howGoogle sees your website.[10]Yahoo! Site ExplorerI mentioned Site Explorer in an earlier post, [11]Research Your Competition with Yahoo Site Explorer butit bears repeating, this tool is indispensable in my daily routine. Fortunately, SEOpen (see above) accessmost of the features for Site Explorer from its menu.If you have any tools you use, please take time to comment and let me know.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5703. http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/4. http://www.web-positiongold.com/product-web-position-gold.htm5. http://wordpress.org/6. http://tools.seobook.com/firefox/seo-for-firefox.html7. http://www.google.com/tools/firefox/toolbar/FT3/intl/en/8. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3219. http://www.google.com/webmasters/10. http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/11. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/research-your-competition-with-yahoo-site-explorer/everyday seo (2008-03-20 16:57:58)thanks for the list of tools.. im using some tools that you mention above.. its really a help.1.9.3 How to Use Keywords - SEO Tip Week 37 (2007-09-17 07:25)[1] I just returned from giving my latest SEO Presentation to a Virginia Portal/Newspaper. I spent thelast week or two creating the presentation and in doing so had to put myself in the place of someone brandnew to the world of SEO. Of course I do this all the time when talking to people looking for an SEO, butthis was slightly different. This time I was having to teach someone how to do SEO and that meant goingback to the basics for everything including keyword usage.So many times, as an SEO expert, I think of much of my knowledge as general public knowledge. Forexample, everyone must know what a keyword is, right? Wrong. And even if they know what a keyword isthey usually don’t know how to use it to effectively optimize their web pages. Showing how keywords couldbe best used was of particular interest to the group I presented to so I thought I’d share my thoughts withyou as well.Here is my personal suggestions on where and how to use your keywords on your webpage you want rankedc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 69
  • 71. BlogBook 1.9. Septemberfor that keyword:• Use it at least once in your Page Title or <title> tag, twice if you can use it in another form, butdon’t feel compelled to have it twice. Once is usually sufficient. Example: <title>How to Use Key-words</title>• Use it once in your Meta Description Tag. This won’t help with your SEO efforts, but can help convinceusers to click your search results. See more about this at my meta description post. Example: <metaname=”description” content=”Want to know how to best use keywords to optimize your webpage?Click here to leanr and read other SEO Tips.” />• Use it at least once in your H1 <h1> Tag . This should be main heading or title of your web page.On this blog post the H1 title is ”How to Use Keywords”. The H1 tag should different on each page,and not the web site name. Only use ONE H1 tag on any given page.• Use it in one of your subheads. Your subhead should be an H@ <h2> tag. H2 tags can also, andshould, hold secondary keywords, but including the main keyword is effective. Most web pages wouldbenefit from subheads from a user perspective as well as for optimization help.• Depending on the amount of body text on the page, you should try to include keywords within thetext at least 4 times. This comes with a BIG CAVEAT though. Only do this if it makes sense anddoesn’t appear spammy. Remember you are writing for human and search engines. Spammy contentcan ruin all the efforts you made to get the user to the page. Be sensible and read your content. If toomany keywords are making it sound silly, take them out. Avoid keyword stuffing.• If you have images on the page, and it makes sense, you should add it to the alt <alt> tag.• If you have images on the page, and it makes sense, you should add your keyword to the image title.This isn’t something most people to but it is helpful, in my opinion and only takes a few seconds.So your image tags should look like this: <img src=”image.jpg” alt=”keyword phrase” title=”keywordphrase” />.• Add your keyword to link in other pages of your site, pointing to the page you want ranked. Linkingout from the page you want ranked is fine, but do not use the keyword you want that page ranked forin the anchor text.I think this will cover your optimization efforts. Of course tweaking my suggestions is encouraged and evennecessary most times, but this is as good a guideline as any to start with. After you have used your keywordsdon’t forget to begin link building using the same keywords. Your efforts will be rewarded.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/(2007-11-29 01:53:21)I’m gald i came upon your blog here. I wasnt sure how to use keywords accordingly. I have just started blogging acoupld days ago and i just kinda wrote a whole bunch of blogs. Then I started to get a little more serious today. Ifyou can help me a little that would be nice. Here is a link. I hope you can give me a few pointers!mackie (2008-01-15 09:01:24)that would be a great help in choosing the right keywords targeted for a site..having right keywords of choice will isone way of inpage optimization that will help in acquiring the potential visitors..really nice post70 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 72. 1.9. September BlogBookDaphne (2008-01-17 05:52:22)this is definitely a great source of information in terms of choosing and using the right keywords for a website. Gettingyour right keywords on the first process of the on-page optimization could lead your site into success in ranking thrumajor SE’s.Shell Harris (2007-12-01 10:14:42)Anon, You didn’t include a link in your post.Haden (2008-03-17 04:53:43)Nice to read this summary. Really it is a great post. SEO is a growing field now a days.[1]http://www.sysconpl.com/blog1. http://www.sysconpl.com/blogOptimizare Google (2008-01-18 16:24:15)Is a good idea to add a keyword also in the URL ..not sure how important it is in the ranking algorithm, but is boldedwhen matching the search. That means Google believe is useful and relevant for the search-as it bolds the keywordsin title and page content. And second it can increase CTR for that listing. Also is important how someone useskeywords in the Title-which is the most important on page factor in my opinion. Thanks for the tips. Marius,1.9.4 PRWEb vs. PRNewswire Press Release Service for SEO - SEO Tip Week 38(2007-09-25 18:31)[1] When submitting press releases as part of our SEO services we are often asked why we chose[2]PRweb.com as our vehicle for submission rather than PRNewswire. When compared across our big threeparameters PRWeb is the better service for our purposes. PRNewswire seems more like something largecompanies use to get out news because they send your release more to journalists and less to Web outlets.This summarized it nicely: ”Services such as PRNewswire and Newswire provide a far more targeted channelto specific demographics than the cheaper alternatives, however unless you’re willing to pay top-rates, theSEO benefit (on a keyword level) is less.”PricingPRWeb.com is more affordable, which our clients certainly appreciate.PRWeb PRNewswireNo membership fee. Their "average" press release costs is $80 withthe SEO Visibility option being $200. Membership based with annualfee of $150. From their site: "The cost of distributing your newsrelease is determined by the newsline you select and the length ofyour news release. Each newsline covers a specific geographical arearanging from local, regional, national and international. Prices startat $180 for a city/metro or statewide distribution. A nationaldistribution starts at $680."[3]PRNewswire ToolkitReachc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 71
  • 73. BlogBook 1.10. OctoberThe reach appear to be better on the web, which is our focus.PRWeb PRNewswire"Gets picked up in leading online news sites like Yahoo! News, GoogleNews, Ask.com, and Topix. Additionally, your press release isdistributed through a host of other online news sites including ourown PRWeb.com and eMediaWire.com, which deliver over 50 million pageviews each month." "Your message will reach mainstream and industry[4]trade media, thousands of [5]web outlets and PR Newswire forJournalists, a digital media channel serving more than 85,000registered journalists across the globe." No mention of Google News "among 3,600 of the world’s most widely accessed Web sites"Cached PagesOf course this is just one example, but Google may index PRWeb better as well.PRWeb: [6]August 28 press release - [7]CachedPRNewswire: [8]August 28 release - Not cachedBoth sites have their advantages, but for SEO, it would appear the PRWeb.com is still the best choicesfor helping your rankings.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.prweb.com/3. http://toolkit.prnewswire.com/wsjsb/distribution.shtml4. http://www.prnewswire.com/company/trade.shtml5. http://www.prnewswire.com/company/online.shtml6. http://www.prweb.com/releases/phonics/reading/prweb547676.htm7. http://72.14.209.104/search?q=cache:http://www.prweb.com/releases/phonics/reading/prweb547676.htm8. http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/08-28-2007/0004652852&EDATEGabriel Gervelis (2008-01-01 21:59:29)I have not used PRWeb or PRNewswire, however i am in need of a good press release system. Thanks for the info,leaning to PRWEB!1.10 October1.10.1 Google Alerts for Link Building - SEO Tip Week 39 (2007-10-02 22:29)As a senior member of a successful SEO company I’m always on the lookout for waysto make my job easier. Usually my job consist of defining an SEO strategy that will help our clients achieve72 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 74. 1.10. October BlogBookhigh rankings in the search engines. High Rankings are supported by high-quality links, so how do we findhigh-quality links without doing a lot of work?Hello, [1]Google Alerts.Google Alerts is a nifty tool that will monitor Google results with predefined search terms and then emailyou those results. They will send the email to you once a day, as it happens or once a week. You can insertany topic or query that you wish to keep tabs on.For example, you can type in a competitor’s business name and/or his web address as an search termalert. Every time Google finds the search term they will send an email detailing where it was found in anemail. It is like having a paid researcher always on call for free.How best to use this for SEO you ask? Easy, here are just a few ideas. Let’s assume you have writtenan article or press release. You submit it through your normal channels but then you set up Google Alertsto notify you everytime it finds the exact title of your article. Be sure to put the search term in quotes so itlooks for an exact match (”My Article Title”). Now you can track in real-time where you article gets pickedup and then contact any of the sites that have placed your article or press release and contact them directlyabout a partnership. Maybe the next article you write can be given more prominence on their site or youcan provide the webmaster original content with embedded links to your site.Or you can track competitors by their name and URL find websites where that information has been postedand follow the same strategy by offering original content of your own. If you find a blog that has postedabout you or your industry maybe you can become a contributor.You can track a product name or service you want to sell or any word or phrase that will help you marketyour site to the search engines. And since Google is providing the information, you have a good shot atGoogle finding your link the next time they visit the site you have partnered with.As with most SEO strategies you need to be creative with this idea and strike while the iron is hot. Constantalerts can keep you motivated and attentive to the market within your industry as well helping you keep avigilant eye on your competition.Has anyone employed this strategy for link building? I’d love to hear success stories.1. http://www.google.com/alertsWelcomeToMyIsland (2007-10-29 10:22:58)I don’t know why I didn’t find out about Google Alerts sooner! Thanks for telling me about it!Southwest SEO (2007-10-21 20:10:45)I’ve used Google Alerts for monitoring keywords and articles but not for link building. I’ll have to give your suggestiona tryArnie - Link Building Pro (2007-10-22 20:25:25)Ah one of my best secrets is now out... Google Alerts! Use them all the time. Speaking of letting some secrets out...We are building a new site called Link Building Best Practices and are looking for success stories. For the next fewweeks, anyone can log in as a contributor and post their best practice stories & suggestions. In exchange for writinga post, they get to add text links back to their site in the post. Do a Google search for ”link building best practices”– our site is ranked #1. It’s a new site, so no PR yet, but as you can tell, we are building traffic and links to the sitec 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 73
  • 75. BlogBook 1.10. Octoberright now. Easy way to get free contextual links and publicity for link building expertise! Check out a Submit Postat [1]Link Building Best Practices.1. http://www.linkbuildingbestpractices.com/submit-a-postWordpress Consulting (2008-03-31 17:32:12)Hey, I’ve commented here a couple of times and wanted to invite you to join this panel I’m putting together to discussUniversal Search and its implications on SEO. If you wanna be part of it, just sign-up in the comments on this page:http://www.bradleyspencer.com/archives/97 and I’ll get a hold of you in a week or two when we start the email panel.Thanks, BradColumbus Web Design (2008-03-22 17:21:13)Another great way to use this is using both ”link:www.mysite.com” and ”site:www.mysite.com” to see (respectively)when people link to you, and also when your new pages get indexed on Goog. Thanks, Brad1.10.2 Unique Product Descriptions - SEO Tip Week 40 (2007-10-08 12:11)[1] This is a niche SEO tip, but if you fall into the category of those who resell products and are goingagainst many other competitors selling the same item you will find this extremely valuable. If the manu-facturer supplies you with the product description then it is likely that many of your competitors are usingthat same description which means you may be devaluing your product page because the search engines seeyour product page as duplicate content. Or your page might not even show up as Google would consideryour site duplicated material not relevant enough to make the cut due to lack of popularity when comparedagainst other sites showing the same results.Here is a perfect example of how duplicate content can hurt your site rankings and your traffic. I picked arandom child’s toy: Turbo Twist Math by Leap Frog. I did a search using the manufacturer’s initial textin the product description (”Be a Math Whiz with Turbo Twist Math”) and here are my [2]Google searchresults. If you visit the link you will see only one result with the following text underneath:”In order to show you the most relevant results, we have omitted some entries very similar tothe 1 already displayed.If you like, you can [3]repeat the search with the omitted results included.”Google is telling you that this description is used so often that they are only showing you one result. Youmust expand the list to see other results which is still only 6 which could mean they are not even includingthe dozens or hundreds of other similar listings in the results. This is an extreme case since I’ve searched fora specific phrase, but the theory still applies: Duplicate content will hurt your rankings.You will have a much better chance of showing in the search results if you add your own unique infor-mation about the product you are selling or the service you are providing. This is good for SEO but alsofor better converting potential customers. Feel free to interject your own opinions or thoughts on why theproduct is useful and include information your visitors might be wary to know. Anything you can write ofadd to distinguish your product information from other sites will help.Being different is better.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=mIk&q=74 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 76. 1.10. October BlogBook%22Be+a+Math+Whiz+with+Turbo+Twist+Math%22&btnG=Search3. http://www.google.com/search?q=%22Be+a+Math+Whiz+with+Turbo+Twist+Math%22&hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&hs=Cy4&filter=0Web Design Lincolnshire (2008-04-06 03:41:31)Amazon are great for creating product reviews, customers do this for them. Increasing a social network status andexpanding the brand.Stephan Miller (2007-11-26 16:26:52)Sometimes you do luck out and happen to be the only one who sells a product online. And every now and thenyou find a niche full of the products. I lucked out there with one site. Now everyone else has the duplicate content,including our vendors since our site ranks higher and has been around a while.1.10.3 Build Links with Blogging - SEO Tip Week 41 (2007-10-18 12:33)As any SEO company will tell you, link building is the backbone of a successful SEO campaign so many ofmy posts revolve around methods of building links without actively searching out links. If you can createbuzz and get links naturally just by having creative and helpful content you will increase your chances ofhigher rankings.[1] One of our clients, F. Curtis Barry & Company, [2]a warehouse consulting firm, has done anincredible job writing on their [3]multichannel company blog. They have done so well that their blog actu-ally has a higher PR value than their company blog. The blog acquires links more naturally and thereforehas the opportunity to drive traffic to their company site, so having the blog rank well is good thing; it is aonline sales tool that is at work 24 hours a day.In our experience with writing and managing blogs for our clients we have discovered that writing aboutother blog posts can sometimes have a side affect of a link pointing back to the post from the outside blogpost. For F. Curtis Barry this backlink came from the Wall Street Journal. The post on the F. Curtis BarryBlog commented on an article (and linked to it) by the Wall Street Journal and a few days later trafficwas coming from an automated link back on the WSJ artilce. It is good thing to get traffic and links fromWSJ.com...and we didn’t even have to ask.Be careful though, writing about other comments and posts is a good strategy but only when done withsincerity. It can show that you are only writing about other articles for pure marketing results if you aren’tcareful. Have a valid and well-thought out opinion if you do try this. Also realize that you may not receivea link back or that the link may have a no follow attribute negating any link juice ([4]We DoFollow links).So be sure your post is valid on its own merits.Comments and linking to blog posts on this site are always welcome. We check out links to our con-tent all the time and will comment on other posts about us frequently. Have anything to add? Please add acomment or post on your own blog.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.fcbco.com/services/warehousing-distribution.asp3. http://www.fcbco-blog.com/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/nofollow-no-more-seo-blog-joins-the-minority/c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 75
  • 77. BlogBook 1.10. October1.10.4 Avoid Blinding the Search Engine Spiders - SEO Tip Week 42 (2007-10-22 13:11)[1] Last week I was asked to consult with a design firm. One of our new clients was using a design firmto build their new site. I was asked to provide some advice when designing for search engine optimization.At Big Oak we are not SEO Nazis who insist everything must be HTML text and the site must be visuallylifeless. Far from it. I was a web designer not to many years ago so I am very sensitive to outside influencesgiving direction to your design, especially when your artistic integrity is being put at risk. After all, mostdesign shops are trying to build a impressive portfolio and ”search engine people” appear to be the enemy ofdesign to some.With this in mind I submitted some things to be wary of, but didn’t need to be avoided. I explainedthat the idea is to let the search engines know what your page is about and you have to have some text forthe spiders to read in order to do that. So these items can be added, with moderation and strategically, butremember to think like a spider when you do.Graphical text: Spiders can’t read graphic text and and I would prefer to use HTML text for all text,but headlines can be enhanced through graphics so using graphic text is okay, but be sure you are using thetitle and alt tags with these images. Wrap it in a H1 tag if that is warranted for a heading.Read more about this on my previous post: [2]Graphic Headlines Can Work for SEO.Images: Obviously spiders can’t read images whether they are text images or otherwise. Our main con-cern is an all image page. All images means no text, which means no traffic. Images are okay, even fornavigation as long as you are using a [3]sitemap and text navigation in the footer. Of course all imagesshould have alt tags and title tags as referenced above in an earlier post.Flash Animation: This may be news to some of you, but the spiders don’t read Flash and although you canadd some context to your Flash through programming, I would never rely on that entirely. Instead use Flashas an enhancer and let the site speak through body text on the page.If you do decide to create an entirely Flash site (may the SEO gods be with you) then be sure to cre-ate an alternate HTML version for the spiders and for those of us who prefer good ol’ HTML sites.Read more about this in my earlier post: [4]SEO and Flash1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/graphic-headlines-can-work-for-seo-seo-tip-week-13/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/create-a-website-sitemap-seo-tip-week-6/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/seo-and-flash-seo-tip-week-17/1.10.5 YouTube or Self Hosting Videos - SEO Tips Week 43 (2007-10-29 14:32)[1] Rarely would I ever give advice that included putting material on an external site rather than yourown site. But when considering videos I have to say that making sure it is branded correctly and postedto YouTube.com is critical. YouTube.com gives small businesses the possiblity to have national exposure,possibly even more than a a network advertising campaign. It would require an extremely viral video but ithas been done by many companies as well as individuals.76 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 78. 1.11. November BlogBookThere are just too many viewer on YouTube.com to pridefully say you are going to post your video onyour site and wait for the video linkbait to catch on. With YouTube.com this can happen overnight with theright video and your traffic would be derived from the grass roots marketing of your video on YouTube.com.Once the video is posted on YouTube.com you can post it on your site and YouTube.com will pick upthe link to your site. It will be tagged with NoFollow, so no link juice, but it will provide traffic through thelink. You will also want to brand the video with your web address.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/Quality Nonsense (2007-11-06 22:19:14)Don’t forget that video hosting can also be a revenue source if you already have traffic. According to a Revver pressrelease, [1]WillItBlend.com earned $9k in Revver commission between January and July this year. Plus, of course,there’s no reason you can’t cross-post videos to YouTube too.1. http://www.willitblend.com/michelle (2007-11-23 04:52:52)You get more customization if you host it on your own site and your vidoes will probably get lost in the sheer numberof vidoes uploaded everyday. It could be a good ideal to host the video on your website and also send out videos tothe useal sources.Gil Tabasa (freelancecowboy.com) (2007-12-10 01:00:17)You provide such great tips, It’s hard to find simple but effective ways to market your site using SEM but you makeit happen. Best wishes!SEO Videos (2008-01-05 15:44:09)I really agree that the inherent nature of Youtube makes it a gold mine for the marketers. I agree with your blog postand looking forward to your posts.tapety (2007-11-20 00:07:39)It is good that someone writes articles which really matter. Thank you for this information, it’s full of useful knowledgewhich is hard to find in tons of rubbish in our famous world wide web. Regards and good luck!1.11 November1.11.1 Finding Links with High PageRank - SEO Tip Week 44 (2007-11-02 16:00)Link exchanging has certainly lost favor and some SEO consultants don’t do link exchanges period. I amalso of the mind that link exchanges don’t count for much, but I also know that link exchanges can be partof a SEO strategy. Two of our largest clients are still employing targeted link exchanges and are rankedhighly for very competitive terms.So, if we can all overlook the great swell of negativity for link swaps lets take a look at how to find goodexchanges. There is an excellent tool from SEOChat.com: [1]Page Rank Search Tool. If you visit this pageyou can type in your keyword and then a phrase with ”exchange links” or ”add links” and it will find thestrongest ranking page with those terms. A real world example: ”diamonds” exchange linksc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 77
  • 79. BlogBook 1.11. NovemberWith some modifications, you can also use it for non-reciprocal link building and article placement. Becreative![2]1. http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/pagerank-search/2. http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/pagerank-search/Shell Harris (2007-11-21 12:37:28)We publish what we do and it has worked for us. There are very few ”secrets” to SEO and those things that are secretsare probably going to be frowned upon by the search engines, which is why they may be secrets. Wow, I confusedmyself. We disclose most of what we do and hopefully our readers will share as well.Dan Anton (2007-11-07 04:03:45)This sounds like an extremely useful tool. Seriously thank you very much as I am against link exchanges or haveheard nothing but bad things, but this tool sounds like it would help find a credible partner(s)Inchirieri Masini (2008-01-16 15:42:02)I like this tip to find related sites with high PR Thanks for sharing it with us.BlogOxide (2007-11-20 11:45:07)I read somewhere that about 80 % of SEO is still unpublished, but this blog tipping so much on SEO seems a com-pletely different story! Good tips BTW, and yes, the tool does work!1.11.2 Images Provide SEO Traffic - SEO Tip Week 45 (2007-11-11 23:33)[1] Any good SEO campaign will put the emphasis on ranking your site for the content of the site.But overlooking the images on the site can be a big mistake especially if your site is selling products whichnaturally use imagery as part of the sales pitch. So why not use those image to draw visitors through organicimage search?Your first step should be to set up a Google Account where you can use [2]Webmaster Tools. Inside theWebmaster tools you will find an option under Tools named ”Enable enhanced image search”. When thisoption is enabled Google will start cataloging your images for placement in the search engine results forimages which can increase your traffic, especially if you can show in the search results that show imagesabove the organic search results. (See example of [3]Google search with images above organic results for thesearch term ’oak tree’)After you have instructed Google to look for your images, you want to be sure your images are tellingGoogle and the other search engines exactly what they are about. How do you do this? Here are some thingsto pay attention to and think about when using images. I’ve listed them in order of ”my importance”.1. Image Size Does Matter - Larger images tend to rank better. Most image results that show in the topthree I have done test searches on have been over 280 pixels in both directions. Bigger images makesense to show first, all other things being equal. I would shoot for 300 x 300 to be safe.2. Image Close to Relevant Text - Keyword above or below the image in the same DIV -or- keyword inthe same paragraph as the image, close to the image. Keyword should be in the same <td> (tablecell) as the image.78 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 80. 1.11. November BlogBook3. Page Title & Page Theme - The title, content and image should all be connected.4. File Name - It can be difficult to add the name of the image to the file name, especially if the shoppingcart software doesn’t allow it, but when you can, be descriptive.5. Alt Tags - Alt tags are designed to provide alternative text when the images cannot be displayed.They should be descriptive of the image. Example: <img src=”oak-tree.jpg”width=”200”height=”350”alt=”Oak Tree”>6. Image Title Tags - This text shows up when you rollover the image in a popup. They should also de-scribe image. Example: <img src=”oak-tree.jpg”width=”200”height=”350”alt=”Oak Tree”title=”OakTree”>7. Image Sitemap - Okay, this is an idea which may or may not be of any help, but it certainly can’t hurtand if you feel your images are important enough to help your rankings then creating a sitemap withdescriptive links to your important images might be the extra boost to get your images to the top ofthe search engine results.Alt/Title for images have been spammed too much (like Meta tags) so I don t think they play much of afactor at all anymore in images search.Please share any successes you may have had with image search orideas you have tried. I’m especially interested in anyone who has tried an image sitemap or what you thinkof this idea.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/docs/en/about.html3. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=oak+treeMarios Alexandrou (2007-11-12 17:30:49)I agree big images are good, but you can’t always have big images on the page. So to deal with this, display athumbnail and link that thumbnail to the larger version. Google is smart enough to understand which URL is thereferrer and which URL has the large image. This way you can get the benefit of context from the copy surroundingthe thumbnail while still getting the boost from having a large image.Shell Harris (2007-11-12 19:52:13)As usual you give a helpful and insightful post, Marios. Thanks for the advice and your time to post.John Simpson (2007-12-22 02:28:19)I’ve heard of and I employ 1-5 whenever I perform SEO duties on someone’s site, but I was not aware of 6 & 7. Thanksfor the information. John Simpson SBTV.com1.11.3 Find Competitor Backlinks with MSN Live - SEO Tip Week 46 (2007-11-20 11:30)Update 1/15/08: This feature is no longer working with MSN Live.Check on the backlinks from your competitors is part of the competitive analysis of any good SEO con-sultant or ”expert”. Up until recently using [1]Yahoo to research competitor backlinks was the only searchengine you could do this in effectively. Well, now Live.com is also back in the game and showing you backlinksto websites. But they also have a nice trick for using keywords to narrow your search.If you visit Live.com and search for the following: +linkdomain:www.bigoakinc.com ”seo tips” you will bec 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 79
  • 81. BlogBook 1.11. Novembershow search results that have links pointing to bigoakinc.com and also have the phrase ’seo tips’ on that pagethat links to bigoakinc.com. Be sure to include the plus sign (+) at the front or else you won’t get any results.You can click this link to see the Live.com search results for yourself: [2]+linkdomain:www.bigoakinc.com”seo tips”.This can be an extremely useful research tool and adding the keyword phrase to the search makes it aeven more valuable tool in your [3]SEO toolbox.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/research-your-competition-with-yahoo-site-explorer/2. http://search.live.com/results.aspx?q=%2Blinkdomain%3Awww.bigoakinc.com+%22seo+tips%22&go=Search&form=QBRE3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/seo-toolkit/Optimizare Seo (2008-01-14 12:57:19)Is not working today...maybe was working back when you wrote the post. I tried with many sites and keywords andnothing.web design Longview (2007-11-27 23:35:28)Ah very good. I was wondering what the trick for MSN was, but hadn’t really looked into it. ThanksShell Harris (2008-01-15 10:40:14)Live.com is no longer allowing this to work. Shame, it was a very nice feature.fitness singles (2008-02-14 10:11:11)Good post, it’s always good to know who is linking to your competitor.just a guy (2007-11-20 14:31:28)Great tip and much fun. The keyword addition is really nice. I’ll waste lots of time reviewing this on all my site.thanks!1.11.4 The Dangers of Buying Links Through a Service - SEO Tip Week 47(2007-11-28 16:01)[1] Should you buy links through a link service? Ever since Google slapped [2]Text-Link-Ads.com (it nolonger appears in the first 30 results for its own name), that is a question webmasters have had to wranglewith more than ever. Generally, Google regards buying links as a form of spam and as threat to their businessmodel.Google hasn t been shy about punishing sites who engage in this behavior lately either. Many who boughtand sold links with Text-Link-Ads have reported a significant drop in their PageRank since the last Googleupdate. This is partly because escaping the eyes of Google is difficult. Doing a search for [3]function tla adswill uncover all the sites selling links using Text-Links-Ads who have not yet upgraded to the latest TLAplug-in, which hides this information. If Google can see who is selling links, they can logically conclude whois buying them as well.[4]JohnChow.com s recent Google slap represents one of the more drastic punishments doled out to a web-master. Chow had ranked number 1 in Google for the keyword make money online for over a year, buthe also aggressively pushed link selling services. Now, he doesn t even appear in the top 30 results for the80 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 82. 1.12. December BlogBookkeyword John Chow. (He clocks in at #57). A cynic might point out that Chow s collapse coincided withhis decision to remove Google adsense ads from his site.Analyzing Google s behavior becomes confusing when one considers that Chow s site still has a toolbar PRof 4. Likewise, Text-Link-Ads still boasts a PR of 7.If one wants to remain in the good graces of Google, avoiding the use of link brokers such as TLA orTNX.net would probably be judicious. But reading Google s mind is not an easy task, as evidenced by theerratic nature of their penalties.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.text-link-ads.com/3. http://www.google.com/search?q=function+tla_ads&num=100&hl=en&rls=en&filter=04. http://www.johnchow.com/Shell Harris (2007-12-11 15:53:40)I think that buying text links is always going to be a part of the SEO landscape. I believe the world Google paintswith only the best site’s getting real links is a false reality. If that were the case many times only the sites with brandrecognition or the most marketing dollars will actually get real links. Small businesses won’t be able to compete.Seo (2008-01-16 15:16:11)of course their money us good because they can advertise their services through Adwords...isn’t that cute G?http://www.google.com/search?hl=en &q=text+ads+links &btnG=Search we take our cut and you can sell andbuy links safe..Patrick Altoft (2007-12-03 14:43:29)I try to avoid buying links altogether nowadays.Webmaster Marty (2007-12-04 16:55:17)Same as Patrick above, i try to avoid buying also. It’s not worth it, being penalized would be too much for me tohandle lol. Good post. Marty.Terry Reeves - Mr Unkie to you (2007-12-04 17:44:57)Personally, I have never really understood link buying. I know some webmasters feel this is the only way to gainPageRank quickly. However, the site with the greatest PR is not always the site on page one. Buying links for thetraffic does not seem to be the best way to spend money either as text link traffic can be very thin. This whole textlink slap does not bother me at all. Google has been warning of this for years.1.12 December1.12.1 Wordpress Plugins Help Google Index Your Blog - SEO Tip 48 (2007-12-05 00:14)Having the best blog in the world, won’t do any good if no one knows it exists. Make sure Google visits andindexes all your posts with a few simple plugins. These are for Wordpress only, but why would you be usinganything else? The following Wordpress plugins will help provide numerous links to older posts on your blogthat might otherwise be buried. The added benefit is your blog readers will also be inclined to read moreposts when using these plugins.Similar Postsc 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 81
  • 83. BlogBook 1.12. DecemberURL: [1]http://rmarsh.com/plugins/similar-posts/This plugin will search the text of all posts and display other posts which are similar or related. This willhelp provide links to older posts making them more accessible to the reader and to the search engines.All in one SEO PackURL: [2]http://wp.uberdose.com/2007/03/24/all-in-one-seo-pack/This plugin is a must have SEO plugin and combines all many SEO features in one plugin, where beforehandyou needed two or three. You can control the following options with this plugin:• Define your home page title, description and keywords• Define your post, page, category, archive, tag and search title formats• Use categories for META keywords• Avoid indexing of duplicate content (prevents indexing of category, archive and tag archive pages)• Autogenerate descriptionsThis particularly replaces the SEO Title Tag many blogs use.Top PostsURL: [3]http://www.macalua.com/2007/02/01/top-posts-by-category-plugi n/This plugin will post your most read blog posts automatically a blog page, providing a good starting pointfor new readers. While giving new readers some direction if you have an overwhelming number amount ofposts, this will also provide the search engines with a direct link from a top level page to deep posts in yourblog. Think of it as a super sitemap.You can also create a smaller top post list that can be shown on every post of you blog in the right column.Making sure your blog is well read by readers and well known by search engines is a critical step towardsincreasing your blog’s popularity.1. http://rmarsh.com/plugins/similar-posts/2. http://wp.uberdose.com/2007/03/24/all-in-one-seo-pack/3. http://www.macalua.com/2007/02/01/top-posts-by-category-plugin/Jo Dane (2007-12-10 19:53:54)Absolutely stellar! Great tools for blogs to add ’spiderability’! That ”similar posts” plugin is deceptively simple.However if you tend to blog on related topics (and who doesn’t) that can help get older posts read by new readerswho usually don’t delve too deeply into the archives. James Brausch, whose blog I also read, expounds on the virtuesof using a blog to gather traffic to sell your products more efficiently.Web Design Lincolnshire (2008-04-06 03:37:48)The SEO All in One pack is a great plug-in and easy to use.PR Online (2008-01-04 23:48:54)Great Plugins! All in one SEO Pack is very nice. Thx for sharing.82 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 84. 1.12. December BlogBookRiccardo Giuntoli (2007-12-05 06:40:51)In the new version of my blog i’ll put for keywords tags and not categories like the All in one SEO Pack do. What doyou think about it?Suchmaschinenoptimierung (2007-12-05 20:22:20)where can i find this in german language? my english is to bad. but i think this wordpress tool can help me with myavz-projects. if you can help my - please post here.1.12.2 Digg-ing Links by Commenting Socially Responsibly - SEO Tip Week 49(2007-12-11 15:37)[1] Social Bookmarking is in fashion and many people are submitting web pages to digg.com, stumble-upon.com and delicious.com. I have written about the advantages to [2]bookmarking your own web pageswith these social sites and how your traffic can increase (see [3]StumbleUpon Shark Surfaces). But what doyou do if you have nothing worth bookmarking at the moment but want to get involved and build links atthe same time? Try intelligently commenting on other bookmarked pages. I’ll use Digg as an example sincethey follow commented links and are the giant in social bookmarking.Take some time and search through Digg for a article that has been ”dugg” and is related to your site’scontent and make a comment on it. Usually there are relatively few quality comments and as long as youare genuine and thoughtful you stand a good chance of keeping your comment and your link. The key is tomake sure the link to your site is related to the dugg subject matter. While this can be done easily, whatelse can be done to utilize Digg’s popularity?Try following the link to the dugg web page see if that allows comments. If the content is on a blogyou can probably comment on it there as well. That page will have many links coming to it, especially ifit was popular on Digg, so placing a comment with a link to your related web page will benefit from the[4]Digg popularity.Maybe this is perceived as an around about way to get a link, especially since it may be a no-follow link,but the traffic will usually be more targeted traffic with a higher chance of converting once the visitors reachyour site.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/social-bookmarking-seo-tip-week-8/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/stumbleupon-shark-surfaces/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/diggn-it-social-media-optimization/SEO Specialist - Terry reeves (2007-12-11 17:02:00)Thanks for that tip. I was not aware that Digg comments are followed. I am really not a big fan of Digg. I have toomuch to do to participate at the level you need to become successful there.Angela (2007-12-21 10:50:42)Many people with websites are still not aware of the great benefits of social bookmarking sites. Indeed social book-marking is a great way of getting backlinks, and more importantly traffic to your website.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 83
  • 85. BlogBook 1.12. December1.12.3 Go Green, Recyle Old Links - SEO Tip 50 (2007-12-14 20:50)Well, I m almost done with my [1]52 SEO tips, only 3 more to go so I m trying to finish strong. And sincegoing green is the theme lately, I m following the trend. Recycling links can be an important part of yourlink building campaign.We often overlook the links we already have or links we didn t actively build ourselves. Your site mayalready have links pointing to it, but if those links aren t keyword-rich links then you are missing out onpotential SEO benefits.Let me give you a great example of a missed opportunity. SnagAJob.com is a leading job search web-site and the have thousands of links pointing to their site. A large number of links is a good thing, but themajority of their links have the link text Snagajob in the anchor text. Many of these links are on EDUsites which pass along wonderful link popularity but so much is wasted when the anchor text is your domainname, or worse, your website address (www.snagajob.com).As part of our strategy for SnagAJob we have been contacting sites with SEO-unfriendly links asking theanchor text to be changed to keyword terms they are trying to rank for such as part-time jobs, [2]jobs, jobsearch, etc. Our success rate is much higher than seeking out new links. And keyword-rich links that haveage is a great combination for moving up in the search results.Do a [3]backlink check with MSN for your site. MSN allows you to search for anchor text too which you cansee how to do in my [4]MSN backlink check post. Look for links that could be improved such as those usingjust your domain name and start contacting those sites linking to you. Requesting changes to your anchortext is a worthwhile investment of your time that could reap better rankings in the search engines.Going Green never felt so good and your site may thank you with an influx of new traffic.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://www.snagajob.com/3. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/using-backlinks-in-msn-live/4. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/using-backlinks-in-msn-live/diggpig (2008-04-14 20:54:37)Based on your experience in SEO, how long will it take for a new link with a keyword as anchor to weight on a site srankings for that keyword? Right after the page with the link was re-indexed?diggpig (2008-04-14 20:54:19)@Shell: Don t get me wrong..I never said you are wrong or right. I just pointed out a few potential problems withyour method which is great anyway. Maybe I am too cautious but those were the problems that I thought shouldbe taken in consideration. And you didn t mention that client had already 90 % links with the domain name in it :)Marius,diggpig (2008-04-14 20:54:09)I still stand by my tip especially when the client in question has such a high number of links with the url already.Almost 90 %, so they have plenty of domain name links. We targeted links on high authority pages and we haveseen great improvement with this strategy for highly competitive terms involving search terms for job search . Wehaven t had anyone remove the link yet. We have many examples of link building in our link building category:http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/linking-building/ Thanks for all your comments. Shell84 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 86. 1.12. December BlogBookdiggpig (2008-04-14 20:52:40)J.J. I really try to take everything Matt says with a grain of salt. You must remember that Matt still works for Googleand therefore has Google s best interests at heart, which he should. On the other hand making sure your links aredescriptive is also a good thing that Google likes so why wouldn t you go back and change the links to make a betteruser experience. It wouldn t make sense for Google to penalize the rewriting of a link to help users know what theyare click towards.diggpig (2008-04-14 20:52:47)Furthermore, it is Google who rewards sites with targeted search results based on the anchor text of the links pointingto the site. If this was a bad thing, it would not work the way it does. I have found this process to be much moreeffective that simply starting a new link building campaign for an established website.diggpig (2008-04-14 20:52:56)I must disagree and here is why: 1. Changing an old link on an old domain and old page doesn t make sense in theeyes of a search engine. Why would do that? - would be their question. 2. Any link passes link juice and you canalways use internal links to have the desired keyword targeted on each page. 3. If I offer a clean link to a site thatI like and appreciate and I receive this kind of mail-please use a keyword for my links- I would remove the link, notchanging the anchor text. 4. Having backlinks with the domain name in it is very natural for search engines so weneed those too. 5. Great posts on your blog-hope you will add some real life examples on old classical link buildingmethods. Thanks, Mariusdiggpig (2008-04-14 20:52:30)This is still considered to be unnatural in Matt Cutt s America.1.12.4 Nofollow Helps Internal Linking and Conversions - SEO Tip 51 (2007-12-20 15:45)I am a big fan of [1]Marketing Sherpa and I have recommended them before when I posted [2]’About Us’pages can increase conversions. Well, another Marketing Sherpa study has caught my attention, describinghow [3]words increase conversions.A few months ago I wrote an SEO tip explaining why you [4]don’t want to use ’click here’ for SEO, but wealso know conversion rates increase when visitors are instructed to ’click here’, ’read more’, ’buy now’ andso on. What is an SEO company to do?How can search engine optimization and good user experience coexist? Both are important to the suc-cess of your website, but at times they seem at odds with each other. The solution is very simple, if not wellknown. Use the ”nofollow” tag on the ’click here’ links and make sure you also have a descriptive link withkeyword-rich text available as well.While the ”nofollow” tag was originally set up as a spam fighter, it can be used with surgical precisionto increase conversions, without hurting you SEO campaign. ([5]Read more about the uses of nofollow)It helps because it will tell the search engines not to count or follow the link with the nofollow attribute.This means the keyword-rich link, without the nofollow, will be followed, helping the destination page’s linkpopularity.How do you use nofollow?Normal link:<a href=”http://www.site.com/page.html”>Click Here</a>c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 85
  • 87. BlogBook 1.12. DecemberAdding the nofollow attribute:<a href=”http://www.site.com/page.html” rel=”nofollow”>Click Here</a>Using it on your site might look like this:[6]Click here for the best deals on [7]dog treats.The HTML code would look like this:<a href=”http://www.bestbullysticks.com” rel=”nofollow”>Click here</a> for the best deals on <ahref=”http://www.bestbullysticks.com”>dog treats</a>.Finally, SEO and Site Usability living in perfect harmony, until we start talking about [8]graphics vs. text.;-)1. http://www.marketingsherpas.com/2. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/about-us-page-lifts-ecommerce-conversions/3. https://www.marketingsherpa.com/barrier.html?ident=301244. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/click-here-for-more-information-bad-text-links/5. http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/blog/050118-2047286. http://www.bestbullysticks.com/7. http://www.bestbullysticks.com/8. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/avoid-blinding-the-search-engine-spiders-seo-tip-week-42/Pinky (2008-01-24 08:08:54)Nice tips.SEO Solutions (2008-01-25 16:04:57)Using the no-follow command could really help a site in terms of polishing its outbound links and controlling PR passSeo (2008-01-15 18:24:27)Maybe you guys should write an article about how to detect hidden text on sites...I recommend disabling CSS andthe sites are very different right? Of course is risky for a client’s site..think about competitors who can find that andreport it to Google..this is the stuff Google bans a site for..trust me works very well..too bad... I was starting to loveyour blog Good luck Marius,Dan - Life Coaching (2008-03-26 06:30:07)That’s really helpful and immensely simple! Thanks for this.Gabriel Gervelis (2008-01-02 04:08:02)Using noFollow tags to control link juice is a good idea. I have used noFollow and shot out links from home pageswith no worries!Omaha SEO (2008-03-28 22:08:26)”Nofollow” links are still followed. They just don’t pass weight. Search engines lie. This is similar to how pages thatyou insist that you do not want to be crawled in your robots.txt are still crawled by Yahoo.86 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 88. 1.12. December BlogBookMatt (2007-12-20 16:32:12)yeah, I would tend to avoid ”click here” like you stated but no follow is a good solution around it. I was going to makesome links on my site no follow like about/faq but realized someone might need/want to find it through SE’s.1.12.5 Create an Wonderful Super Awesome Resource Directory - SEO Tip 52(2007-12-28 15:11)[1] If you have been playing the SEO game for long you know that using directories are one way tobuild links. How effective this is to your SEO campaign is debatable nowadays. But I’m not talking aboutsubmitting your site to other directories, I’m recommending you start your own directory. I can practicallyhear the moans and protests through the Internet now. Let me explain my [2]modest proposal. Here aresome ideas for creating your own wonderful super awesome resource directory.Build the directory on your current site. Do not start a site just for the sake of being a directory.There are thousands of unsuccessful directories and we shouldn’t be adding to the overcrowded market. Youcan see an example of a [3]resource (vendor) directory we have created for [4]F. Curtis Barry & Company.The directory was created as a subsection of their business site so it resides in their main domain.Be selective. This directory isn’t supposed to be all-inclusive, it is being created to be a resource foryour customers. It should have perceived value so only include vendors that are recommended by you oryour company.Be opinionated. This is YOUR directory, right? Well, say what you want but back up what yousay. Give your opinion. Why was this vendor or company selected for placement in this directory? Let youraudience know.Be verbose. Make the directory worthy of being read. After all, you aren’t including many compa-nies. Remember, it is a privilege and only the best get included so you won’t have to write about a largenumber of companies or products, but you should write enough to be helpful about each one. Each listingshould have its own detail page - often the company selected will give you all the text you need. If you don’tlike what they have written or the tone of writing ask for edits. More than likely they will accommodate.Be Greedy. The point of creating this directory is to build links. This can be accomplished in twoways. The first is through [5]reciprocal linking (more on the other link building method later). Yourdirectory is free or at least it should be. You don’t want your directory listings to be paid, it would reducethe validity of the listings. If you are gong to provide a link to outside companies with content and arecommendation, then asking for a link in return seems reasonable. At the least, they should link to theirown detail page.Be Proactive. This isn’t a ”build it and they will come”scenario. You will have to solicit companiesyou want to include in your directory. After you have set up your categories (if needed) and have addeda few companies you may start receiving requests at some point, but be vigilant and only let in the topcompanies that you would recommend. You don’t want to compromise your directory’s integrity withlow-quality listings.Reap the benefits. Here is the second way to build links. Now that you have a selective and highquality directory, other sites will be more inclined to link to it of their own accord. You have created ”linkbait” and will attract links pointing to you industry resource directory.c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 87
  • 89. BlogBook 1.12. DecemberTo wrap this up, here is the main idea to keep in mind. The directory should be considered usefulby all parties. You should request links and use the directory as a link bait opportunity. The directoryshould represent only the best, recommended companies in your industry and should be focused.This will require some work but you will also have created a useful tool that will attract attention.The time you use to build this directory will be well spent. You may even show up in the search results forthe companies you list.Good luck on your wonderful super awesome resource directory.52 SEO TipsI also want to thank everyone who reads this blog and has been here for my year long commitment tocreating a new [6]SEO Tip every week. This is the final tip out of 52 SEO Tips for the year 2007. It startedas something I thought I could in a few minutes once a week, but turned into a much bigger effort as Itried to create tips that were more than just writing ”Do keyword research.” It has been fun and frustratingand I’m glad to have completed my goal. There will be more SEO tips, but not every week. I’ll also beattempting to write more commentary now that I can focus less on SEO tips. So keep coming back andkeep commenting and maybe we can both learn something.1. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/2. http://art-bin.com/art/omodest.html3. http://www.fcbco.com/vendor-resource-guide/vendor-resource-guide.asp4. http://www.fcbco.com/5. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/why-reciprocal-linking-works-for-seo/6. http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/category/52-seo-strategies/byron2Peter K. Carr (2007-12-30 17:28:09)I d like to build a directory& Do you recommend I build it entirely on my own, or use a canned program to do it?Shell Harris (2007-12-30 17:30:18)I would do it by hand, especially if you have a knowledge of HTML or a program to help such as Dreamweaver. Thewhole idea behind the directory is it should be small, and not look like a typical directory that only has a short anchortext link and a description underneath. You should aspire to have a few important categories and no more than 3 orso listings in each. Each listing would have robust information that would help visitors make decisions. A few qualityentries is much better than a lot of low quality entries.SEO for Yahoo Small Business - Terry Reeves (2007-12-28 16:34:09)This tip is one that can create tremendous benefit to the small specialty niche or business and is a great idea for anylocal or regional web site. The best part is you can actually get visitors to recommend content for the directory whichmakes adding the content much easier. Allow them to submit their own reviews or opinions and soon your directoryis social. The possibilities are endless.Shell Harris (2008-01-15 10:42:00)Has anyone seen examples of selective directories? I would like to post some examples.Seo Tips (2008-04-04 02:48:33)links working now....have to fire my copy writer!88 c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’
  • 90. 1.12. December BlogBookWeb Design Lincolnshire (2008-04-03 09:18:51)A high traffic website is an asset. If you have lots high traffic coming towards your website, then you can advertiseon the website. A high traffic website can open many opportunities to you and your blog, website, business or brand.Internet Markting Amsterdam (2008-03-17 08:05:38)This will require a lot of work! But hee.. linkbuilding is a lot of work. It’s a synonym: Linkbuilding = a lot of work.:)c 2008 ’http://www.bigoakinc.com/blog/’ 89
  • 91. 52 SEO Tips - Jan-Dec 2007presented by:Big Oak SEOhttp://www.bigoakinc.comcontact@bigoakinc.com