08Aug

How does Content Syndication Effect SEO

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In this video, we are going to discuss the topic of how Google treats content syndication across multiple websites.

If Google finds multiple versions of the same content on different websites, they consider this duplicate content. You can refer to my video on what is duplicate content for a little bit more information on that. But essentially Google does not want to show multiple pages which have the same content if it can be avoided. So if they find these many different pages for a particular search which are relevant, but they look pretty much the same or very similar, then they’re going to filter those out and they’re going to pick one to show.

The problem for you if you are doing content syndication is, this could quite easily be the one that’s not on your website. So you wrote an article on your website and then syndicate it to multiple other websites, then Google is quite luckily, or quite possible that Google could pick one of the syndicated versions of the page to show on their search results, and not the one you want, which is the one in your website.

The way that Google suggests that you get around this problem, is by linking, always make sure that there’s a link back from any syndicated versions of that page to the original article on your website or wherever the preferred version of that article appears.

Another situation to consider is if you’re syndicating your content across multiple mediums. For instance, you have a video (like this one) and you also transcribe that video into an article. So this is syndicated content – the content of the video and the content of the article are the same (it’s the same words) but multiple different mediums. And this is video reference will appear on Youtube, wherein the transcription appears on our website. So it doesn’t seem like Google is treating this as duplicate content at this stage, and perhaps they will in the future when they have become a bit more sophisticated and able to analyse video a little bit better, but this stage they don’t seem to be treating it as duplicate content. However I still suggest that you link back from syndicated versions of multiple mediums to preferred version. So for instance, we do in fact link from my Youtube videos in the description to the website here, where you can get the transcription and the video, and that’s the preferred version for us. So we recommend you do that as well.

06Aug

What is Duplicate Content?

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In this video, I’m going to discuss what is duplicate content. Duplicate content is where lots of content or entire pages are very similar or exactly the same across multiple pages or multiple different domains.

When someone makes a search, Google tries to return multiple different page with distinct and unique information. So, if there are duplicate content across your website or across multiple websites (including your website) then Google is going to filter out all the duplicates and just show one o f the pages with that information.

Where this can be a problem for you, is if that page that they decide to show is not the one that you want them to show. It can also affect you if people are linking to your website, but (there) you have  multiple different websites they could link, sometimes to one type of page, sometimes for another type of page, and then when Google comes to sort of add up these links, and give that value to your website, it’s going to divided amongst these two pages, and it’s not going to be consolidated, and won’t give you the best results. If not, have someone to go over your website and do a search engine optimisation audit or if you’re using a content management system, they’ll probably find that you do have duplicate content already.

Some of the common ways this can happen, is your website’s available both at www.example.com and example.com (without the www),  technically these two different pages can be different for almost  all websites they are the same, but Google can’t treat them as exactly the same if you don’t tell them, because they can actually be different, so that’s just one example, if you have an online store (an e-commerce store) and you have a product page, sometimes the URL, that page can be reached by having example.com/category/product name, and sometimes it can be example.com/product name. So that’s another example where it’s fairly easy for you to have this duplicate content without really realising it.

There’s also other many, many examples, for instance if you a have a printer-friendly version of a page and the regular version of the page and they’re the same, that’s a duplicate content. If you have parts of your website where you have summaries of different posts – perhaps a blog homepage versus an individual article for a blog – that can also be considered a duplicate content.

Most of these problems in these duplicate content issues can be fixed up using a few different methods and that is fairly easy to do. The other thing to think about is that sometimes people will deliberately create duplicate pages or pages, which are very similar to try and get more real estate in the SERPs, so SERP that’s Search Engine Results Page, and if you have many different pages, which are very similar, Google may, in fact, take manual or algorithmic action against your website and you find yourself in a bit of a penalty, so absolutely don’t deliberately create very similar or exactly duplicated content across your website or across multiple websites, it could neutralise Google, because this could lead to you getting a penalty of some description.

And if you do have duplicate content on your website, then you should use one of the multiple methods you can use to get rid of that. So those methods include: doing a 301 redirect from the less preferred versions of the page to the preferred one; you can also implement what’s called canonical URLs, which something that goes in a code in your website, to let Google know this is the correct and the preferred version of this page or this URL; and there’s a few other methods you can use as well, which are outlined below this video in the description.

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/66359?hl=en

29Jul

How can I leverage multiple keyword domains?

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In this video I’m going to discuss what you can do with multiple keyword domains.

In the past, Google gave a special boost to domains which had keywords in them when people were searching for those keywords. For instance, if you had the domain accommodationadelaide.com.au and someone’s been searching for the keyword ‘accommodation adelaide’ on Google, then this website, accommodationadelaide.com.au would have a special ability to rank above another website, for instance, you know, hotel.com.au/adelaideaccommodation.

However this sort of extra little boost that these keyword domains (exact match domains often called) had was largely depleted at the end of last year (the end of 2012) so I still see them having a little bit of an advantage, but it’s going to differ from market to market and in general, they don’t have as much of an advantage as they once did.

So many people who bought these keyword domains in the past, hoping that they could use them for their SEO, unfortunately now you’re going to find that it’s unlikely they’re going to be able to put up lots of little websites with your keywords then get them to rank more easily than putting that information in your website.

Certainly the recommendation would be to focus on your key website (your main website) and if you have extra content to put up there, rather than putting on different websites with these different keyword domains, put that content on your main website, just, you know, have your main website slash and then your topic (main website/topic) and put your content up there. And that’s going to have a better long-term effect on your SEO.

If you really do want to try and do out some websites with these keyword domains, and maybe do some experiments and see if you can get a little bit of leverage there, then this is something you can do, of course. I would try it carefully, don’t be manipulative, don’t try to do it manipulatively, be careful with duplicate content issues (which I have discussed in other videos), and make sure that any information you’re putting up on these other domains is unique, is also useful and interesting, and it’s better to have more than less – so don’t put up 1 or 2 pages, put up, you know, 5, 10, 20 pages and try and build it out as really rich resource on that particular topic, and then you may find yourself getting some benefit from that.

26Jul

What is the Ideal Keyword Density?

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In this video I’m going to discuss the ideal keyword density for your articles.

People have been going crazy for keyword density for many years. And I think in the beginning, there probably was some way to it from Google that probably did look at articles and look at the density of a particular keywords in there, to try and see what the article is about, but their algorithms are much, much more sophisticated now, so you can’t really think of optimising a website in terms of keyword density anymore, so it’s just far to simplistic.

Google is looking at things like other pages linking into your page, and what those pages are about; looking at other words on the page, which are related to different keywords and how they relate to each other; and many other different factors. And they’re obviously also always improving their algorithms as well.

So my advice would be, do not focus on keyword density for the most part of your content, more focus on making that content relevant for user, making sure that it solves a problem for them, gives them interesting and useful information on your topic.

I guess one way that you could look at density as being useful is the difference between a 0% density and anything above that, so in order for the most part – in order for your page to appear in the search results for particular keyword, that keyword must appear on the page somewhere, so if you have a 0% keyword density, you’re going to find it very difficult to rank for different keywords. And this may seem obvious, but some people actually do, sort of struggle with this, so they don’t really realise until you point it out to them.

If that keyword does not appear on that page or in some cases, a synonym of that keyword can also work, but if there’s no synonym or no keyword on there, it’s going to be very difficult for Google to associate that page with that keyword. So you definitely should have a keyword density above zero for the keywords you’re trying to rank for, but beyond that I wouldn’t worry about it too much.

Make sure the keyword appears on the title of the page, make sure it appears at the heading of the page (if possible), and make sure it appears in the content (obviously), keyword density above zero, and perhaps towards the top of the page it would be good to mention it, and then (just) after that just mention it as it is natural, don’t try and get an exact percentage, don’t think, you know, if you go over a certain % it’s going to have a negative effect, just use it as it appears naturally or is natural to have it in there, and this will be the best way to approach keyword density.

15Jul

SEO for E-commerce Websites – Product Page Content Ideas

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In this video, I am going to explain the importance of content on your product pages, on your E-commerce website.

One of the big mistakes that businesses make, especially small businesses who have an e-commerce website, is they don’t put enough unique information on their product pages. Now maybe they have the manufacturer’s description just copied and pasted on there, or if they have more unique product, perhaps their own product, they just don’t put enough information up there, and a lot of businesses that we deal with (within our SEO business, Wicked Cow Marketing) have this problem, especially with small businesses that don’t have a big budget, but also big businesses who just don’t know what they’re doing.

So it’s important that you put as much unique, interesting, and useful content on your product pages, so that Google can associate all the keywords related to your products to that page, and anyone who’s searching, they’ll be directed towards that page on your website.

Now, if you’re wondering, you know, what kind of information can I put up on a product page? Then a great site to go and check out is an Australian business called The Video Guys – I recently bought a microphone from them and I was really, really, happy to see all of the great information on their product pages (I’ll link to the product I actually bought on the website here, below this video, so you can go check it out) but you’ll see things like: specifications, features of the product, 1,200 words of features, customer review (so this is usually a generated content), there’s also a Q&A section where you can actually ask questions on the product page and someone from The Video Guys will actually go in there and answer it (so that’s more sort of semi user generated content as well). And the thing with the reviews is, I actually got email about two weeks or so after I received the product, saying, hey, hope you’ve enjoyed the product, we’d really love it if you’ve left us a review on our product page here, and it’s actually incentivised with entry into a competition to win a prize – a $150 prize.

Product Page Information Ideas from Video Guys Website

So that’s another way that you can encourage your customers to leave reviews on your product pages, which is of course, content are going to be relevant and useful, and it’s a little bit easy than you have into do it.

So definitely go check out The Video Guys and see what they’re doing, and try and get some ideas for your product pages on your e-commerce website.

Zoom H1 Audio Recorder & Accessory Kit Bundle

10Jul

SEO Effect of New gTLDs

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In this video I’m going to explain the possible impacts to SEO of the new gTLDs – that’s generic top level domains.

In my most recent Web Marketing Adelaide podcast episode, episode #40, I interviewed Shaun LeCornu from Slam Strategy. Shaun is very up to date on the new gTLDs coming out onto the marketplace – this includes branded top level domains such as .coke ; .mcdonalds ; .google ; plus things like city names, .adelaide ; .sydney ; .melbourne, and more generic things like, .pizza – so you could have a local pizza shop, which has the domain name: yourbusinessname.pizza.

So this is definitely going to change the landscape of URLs and domains, it’s going to be very different to what we have now where there is a very limited number of top level domains – such as .com, and .com.au, country specific ones, and the more generic ones, .org – so it’s going to have a major impact.

Shaun is very adamant that he thinks that its going have a big impact on SEO and that the people who have the ability to get these top level domains are going to have major advantage, as far as SEO is concerned. I’m not as convinced as he is yet, I think we’ll have to wait and see what the full impacts are going to be. The stuff I’m seeing coming out of Google (Matt Cutts is the head of Google’s Webspam team) doesn’t suggest that they necessarily going to be giving a special boost to these domains, which seems makes sense to me because why would they give special treatment to those who can afford to pay more but don’t necessarily have more relevant or authoritative content? From a branded perspective, certainly this is Shaun’s area of expertise, it could have a major impact being to brand your name even more, and we’re just going have to wait and see what the impact is there.

But as far as SEO is concerned, I wouldn’t heaps worry about it yet, but we will really have to see how it happens when those domains come out in a few years time.

Thanks to the Majoran Distillery for the jumper I’m wearing in this video, more on that here.

08Jul

Four SEO Company Red Flags you should Watch Out For

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In this video I’m going explain a few red flags that you should be aware of when hiring an SEO company.

First up, the meta keywords tag – now this is a tag within the HTML, where we can put some keywords in there for the page. Way back in the beginning, this was a way that search engines used to figure out what the page was about, but the major search engines have come out and said that they haven’t used this keyword tag for 5+ years. So any SEO who’s saying “we can optimise your meta keywords tag,” obviously isn’t up to date on SEO news, and this is bad news for a company who’s gonna be doing SEO for your business.

Search engine submissions – The process of submitting a website to a search engine is ridiculously easy, it’s just a simple form to fill out, so this shouldn’t really be considered as a selling point for an SEO company. It’s more likely, that they’re using this language to make you think it’s a plus for their service as when it’s really not. They might say something like, “we will submit your website to X number of search engines,” it could be 100, 150 to 500, or even like 10 is still a red flag. It’s also worth considering that you don’t actually need to submit a website to search engines for them to find and crawl it. As long as there’s a link pointing to that website from somewhere else, then the search engines will find it and will get indexed anyway. And if you do submit versus getting a link – this isn’t going to actually impact your rankings, it’s just going to affect when your website gets found, so your actual rankings are not going to be impacted at all by the submission process, so this is definitely a red flag. I think they’re using this language to manipulate you into thinking that this is a plus for their service when it really isn’t.

If the SEO company talks about a number of links they’re gonna get you each month, this is definitely a red flag. First of all, it’s quality not quantity of links that really makes a difference in your link building, so just having a number doesn’t really tell you anything about the quality of those links. Also, the fact they’re giving you this number without even knowing anything about your business, about your industry, and about the market that you’re targeting, suggests that they’re actually going to be using black hat tactics to get these links, and this something you certainly want to avoid.

Ranking guarantees – now this is a very popular way of marketing SEO services. You probably know that most of the top SEO services in the world do not offer any kind of ranking guarantee, and there’s a reason for this – it’s because ranking guarantees almost certainly suggest that the company is using black hat tactics to get those rankings. Think about it, they’re offering this guarantee without knowing anything about your business, or your market, or your industry, so it’s almost certain that they are using some sort of scalable technique, probably buying links, which is a definite no no as far as Google is concerned and this is a black hat tactic which you do not want to be participating in because it could negatively impact your website; and not in a short term, but possibly for a long term as well.

So be very careful of these four red flags when you’re trying to hire your SEO company or if you’re sort of doing SEO for your own website. Stay away from information that describes these techniques as being useful for your website.

Thanks to the Majoran Distillery for the jumper I’m wearing in this video, more on that here.

27Jun

SEO is Not in a Vacuum Anymore

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The topic of this video is “SEO is not in a Vacuum Anymore”. In the early days of search engines, SEO pretty much operated within a bubble, however fast forward to modern times, in particular the last couple of years, and Google and other search engines have got much more sophisticated in the way that they rank websites and web pages, so it’s very difficult to be successful in SEO these days without incorporating other elements of the online marketing mix into your SEO, so there could be things such as content creation, I discussed content creation in many of my SEO videos, it’s a very important part of the process now, social media marketing, it doesn’t have an immediate or direct effect on SEO just yet, it will almost certainly in the future, have some effect. However, things that are shared on social media, content that you create that’s shared on social media can bring you social media traffic, of course, but it can also indirectly relate to your SEO if someone that has a blog or a website finds your content on social media that might impact a link to it, which could help you with your SEO, definitely.

And relationship building is also very important within the link building side of SEO, it’s much more likely that someone will link to you if they already know and trust you, and you have some sort of relationship, perhaps you’ve interacted online a little bit, interacted in person a little bit, or both, so if they have some sort of idea of this, then it contributes to the mix that they trust you a little bit more, they’re going to be much more likely to link to you, share your content on social media, mostly fair work to you so you may not necessarily be directly related to SEO, but then that could send you an offline referral, or a referral through a different avenue.

So the takeaway is always think about SEO within the context of the other parts of your online marketing mix, and never think of it within a bubble or a vacuum anymore.

24Jun

SEO News about Getting Links from Bloggers

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In this video we’re going to be talking about another SEO Tip concerning advertorials. A popular and effective way of getting links to your website is to reach out to bloggers within your industry and within your location, give them a free or discounted product or service that you offer, and then hope that they’ll write about it on their blog, with the link back to your website.

However, in light of a recent penalty placed by Google against a company in the UK, a flower company, which was using this sort of technique, you need to be very careful about how you approach this promotion technique moving forward. Basically, there’s two ways of approaching this blogger link building strategy.

One, is to make it very clear to the blogger that in order to get this free product that we want to give them, they have to write about us and they have to link to us. This is a manipulative and spammy way to approach this and it is the reason that the UK flower company received a penalty from Google.

The second way to approach it is to be much less explicit about what you want the person to do. So, basically, give them the product and say, “hey we’d love to give you this product, we want you to review it, we want ways to improve it, so we value your feedback. If you want to write it on your blog and perhaps give us a link then that would be great, but it’s not required.” This way if they link to you it is their choice and not a paid link. You should also encourage the blogger to make a note to their readers that makes it clear that while the product was given for free, their opinion is in no way distorted for paid for.

So this is the correct way to approach this, and approaching it in this way should ensure you don’t get any penalties, but you can still benefit a lot from the links and the promotions, in general, which reaching out to bloggers in this way it can bring.

21Jun

How to Target Long Tail Keywords for SEO

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In this video I’m going to explain the two different methods you can use to target the Long Tail of search within your industry. There’s two basic ways of targeting the Long Tail of search with your website.

Number one is to identify a specific amount of phrases, which have enough traffic to make it worthwhile to target them specifically. One way of doing this is to go to Google’s keyword research tool, which I’ll link to below this video, and this tool will allow you to type in keywords, either long tail phrases, which you think people might be using, or just type in a search keyword and it will give you some suggestions, then it will tell you much traffic on average these particular search terms have each month on Google, and you can actually use this to determine which keywords you want to target and which keywords you’ll perhaps leave to later and those that you won’t worry about. By doing this you can find various keywords to target on your website, which you may not have thought of before and they can bring in significant traffic especially when you start targeting lots of them.

Google keyword tool

The second method for targeting the long tail is just to write lots and lots of useful and interesting content and put it on your website. The more content you create, the more keywords, or the more words you have on your website, so the more chances you have for appearing in search results, it’s really that simple.

One caveat I should say is always, always, always, focus on the users and the customers when you’re creating your content. Never write your content for the search engines, always write your content and create your content to help the needs of your customers, your potential customers, your current customers, your general audience, and try and meet their needs with your content, don’t be thinking specifically about search engines when you’re writing that content.

–> Google’s keyword research tool