When it comes to search engine optimization, many people make the mistake of focusing largely or exclusively on a site's text content. As long as articles and blog posts are well written and the right keywords have been deployed in the right places, some site owners and even SEOs assume that there's little else to be improved as regards a site's front end.
Changes to the way that search engines evaluate pages mean this is an outdated attitude. Today's search algorithms, especially Google's, place much more emphasis on multimedia content than in the past. Good image content, properly tagged and titled, can really boost a site's profile. The value of image searches in driving traffic can't be overstated — especially since Google serves a block of image results at the top of its regular search results page. These naturally draw the eye and encourage searchers to click on the associated links.
The vital role of social media in determining a page...
Google Analytics is a free, but incredibly powerful tool that can provide you with a wealth of detailed data about your website or sites that you can then use for marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) purposes. Analytics is available to anyone with a Google account. The program includes quite a few innovative features – some that were included from the first Analytics release, and others that have been added more recently. Understanding these features, their use and their purposes can help you take better advantage of Google Analytics’ power.
Many companies that maintain an online presence use Google’s Adwords program to generate traffic to their sites by posting ads next to relevant search results pages. Analytics can help you determine exactly which keywords or search phrases are generating the most traffic – as well as which generate traffic that converts the best into actual paying customers.
Thanks to the emergence of big data, page tags, and analytics tools, brands and online publishers really have a lot of things going for them in data department. It’s never been this easy to gather visitor intelligence, and website owners nowadays recognize the value of analytics so they’re more than happy to track their site metrics, test components, and generate reports.
That’s the good news. The not-so-good news is that while site owners are certainly looking at their analytics, they’re not always paying attention to the right numbers. The fact is not all metrics are created equal. While it may be easier to look at the numbers on the surface (i.e. page views, total number of users, etc.), these aren't necessarily the data points that would give you the pulse of your website or company. These aren't the numbers that will tell you how your users are doing and what action steps you need to take to keep them happy.
Tracking surface metrics...
You've heard of AuthorRank, and you want to capitalize on it, but how? SEO changes so fast. It used to be that you could stuff your meta-keywords tag and rocket yourself to the top of the SERPs. A wellspring of anonymous authors got a lot of traffic, and a lot of spam sites presumably made a lot of money. Now, apparently, Google wants more quality and less anonymity. Meta-keywords have been out for a long time, but authorship hasn't been a big deal - until now.
Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are
Google is encouraging you to stop being anonymous. It's going to start following you all over the web. That's probably a good thing for a couple of reasons. First, the web is becoming more social with Facebook and Google+. It's not that the web wasn't social before though, it's just that people are wandering away from blogs and going to social networking sites. Yeah, they end up back on blogs in the comments section too, but bloggers and businesses...
Did you prank anyone on April Fools’ Day? Well you probably didn’t have to anyway because some of the biggest names in tech had more than their fair share of April Fools’ jokes.
Most of the shenanigans were pretty obvious, but there was one in particular that seemed to have really fooled a few oblivious people (more on that below).
A quick note though: Whether you were the prankster or the prankstee this past April Fools’, don’t forget that all the jokes on the 1st of April should just be made in the name of good clean fun. (And if you ended up on the wrong side of a prank, don’t worry… you can always get your revenge next year!)
Anyway, in case you missed them, below is a summary of some of tech’s best April Fools’ jokes of 2013.
Google Nose - “In the fast-paced world that we live in, we don’t always have time to stop and smell the roses. With Google Nose BETA, the roses are just a click...
There's an old joke that goes something like "99% of lawyers give the other 1% a bad name." You chuckle, but you know it's true. And that's not all - it's become something of a running gag in the SEO industry too. For years, SEOs have been beating the backlinks drum and small business owners have been marched off an optimized cliff. After Panda, a lot of the old backlink strategies just up and died. Article directories withered away into obscurity, and link networks were (and continue to be) crushed by Google.
Anchor Text Isn't That Important
SEO firms (and their clients) got a major wake-up call when Google dropped this bombshell on its Inside Search Blog in 2011:
Better page titles in search results by de-duplicating boilerplate anchors: We look at a number of signals when generating a page’s title. One signal is the anchor text in links pointing to the page. We found that boilerplate links with duplicated anchor text are not as...
Log on to Google.com any given day and enter a search query for a random person, place, or landmark and you are no doubt going to be bombarded with page links, suggestions, and image previews related to your term. Bing.com recently added a new expansion to its Snapshot feature that allows the search engine to make better associations between places, people, and things.
Bing’s Snapshot feature is found on the right hand side of the page when users use the search engine and provides images of relevant people, places, or “things” that correlate to the query term. Using a new technology it calls “Satori,” Bing is seeking to provide better image results that draw a clear correlation between subjects.
Bing posted the following statement on its official blog on 21 March:
Today, we are inviting people to check out Snapshot to experience our expansion of Satori.
Since its introduction in June, we have expanded Satori to include a significantly...
It’s been about a year and a half since the launch of Google+ and it looks like things are going well for the search giant’s social network. So well in fact, that according to a recent report by UK market research firm Trendstream, Google+ “is now the second largest social network in terms of active users.”
Forbes cites that the above-mentioned report “estimates Facebook‘s active users in December 2012 at 693 million, compared to 343 million for Google+.” Of course, the term “active users” is still pretty ambiguous, as Google hasn’t confirmed the real definition of “active” (i.e. are these users really logging into the Google+ website or are they merely using Google products?). Still though, 343 million cannot—and should not—be ignored. Especially if you’re trying to increase your web presence.
Nonetheless, it isn’t just about huge numbers. The fact is there are a number of sound...
Google is known for a lot of things. Not only is it home to the most utilized search engine on the web, but it also provides an array of services that a lot of people heavily use. The most well-known of which include Gmail, Google Docs, Drive, and Calendar. Want to watch your favorite cat videos? Check YouTube. Need to know the stats of your website? There’s Google Analytics for that. Then there’s also Android, the companies’ foray into the mobile arena, and Apple’s greatest nemesis.
Yes, Google’s tools and services have certainly made life in the digital world much more convenient. And the fact that the company keeps it all under one roof makes things even easier. All you need is one login (your Google account) and you’ll be able access its complete toolbox.
The question is though, are you taking advantage of all the tools in that box? Answer: probably not. And that’s mainly because Google is offering so many services, it’s...
There is no writing a headline for this news story that wouldn’t result in most readers thinking “duh.” Telling the world that Bill Gates believes Microsoft’s search engine Bing is a better product than rival Google, is like telling the world Steve Jobs felt the iPhone is a better product than a Samsung Galaxy S III. Gates, the richest man in America, founded Microsoft along with Paul Allen and served as the executive chairman of a company that went on to become the largest personal computer software company in the world.
Gates no longer serves as the executive chairman for Microsoft, though he does retain a position as a non-executive chairman, but that hasn’t stopped him from promoting the company’s Bing search engine. Although he now devotes his full attention to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, that didn’t stop him from boasting about Bing’s superiority in a recent “Ask Me Anything” conversation on...