Local SEO Service

If you wish to rank highly in Google and other search engines for local search terms, it is important that your website is optimised to target a range of local keyword phrases, that are relevant for your business.

Local search terms are usually made up of a generic keyword with the addition of a local town or region, for example:

  • Chinese Restaurant Manchester
  • Carpet Cleaning Birmingham
  • Structural Engineer Edinburgh
  • Cosmetic Dentist Sussex

The following top local search engine optimisation tips will help you to achieve top Google organic listings for your chosen local keyword search terms:

1. Meta Title Tag

It is extremely important to include your location in your meta title tag. Including your location in your title tag will definitely help to improve your local rankings on Google and other search engines. Many website owners fail to include their location in their title tag, which is a missed opportunity.

For example, if you are an interior designer based in Brighton, then the content of your title tag should look something like this:

“Professional Interior Design-Brighton”

In addition to targeting Brighton, if you also wish to target the surrounding areas, then your title tag should look something like this:

“Affordable Interior Design-Brighton-Eastbourne-Sussex”

Reinforcing your location in your Description and Keywords Tag is also worthwhile.

2. Business Address

If you have not already done so, you should consider including your actual physical business address on every page of your website. Including your address in the footer of each web page is an easy way to inform Google that your site is highly relevant for a specific location and any relevant local search terms.

Therefore if the majority of the content on your website is about interior design, and every page also mentions Brighton, Google and the other search engines will determine that your website is highly relevant to customers searching for “Interior Design Brighton”.

3. Google Places

You should also make sure that your website is registered with Google Places, in order to appear on their local map listings. Google Places is a free service which allows you to provide Google with up to date information about your business.

4. Local Business Directories

Getting listed in local business directories will help to build incoming links to your site which are closely related to your industry and location. Some of the local directories to consider are as follows:

By following these Top Local Search Engine Optimisation Tips you should have a strong foundation for achieving a high ranking on Google and the other search engines, for your local targeted keywords.

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As ever, please feel free to comment on this post and share this information with your friends and colleagues.

Getonfast SEO Link Building

I recently came across a recent blog post on the Google Webmaster Central Blog, which outlines a number of different link building methods that should be followed in order to secure high quality back links to your website.

According to Google there appears to be some confusion, especially among less experienced webmasters, on understanding the most effective link building methods.

The official Google viewpoint on how to build quality back links to your website, is explained as follows:

“If your site is rather new and still unknown, a good marketing technique is to get involved in the community around your topic. Interact and contribute on forums and blogs. Just keep in mind to contribute in a positive way, rather than spamming or soliciting for your site. Just building a reputation can drive people to your site. And they will keep on visiting it and linking to it. If you offer long-lasting, unique and compelling content — something that lets your expertise shine — people will want to recommend it to others. Great content can serve this purpose as much as providing useful tools.”

“A promising way to create value for your target group and earn great links is to think of issues or problems your users might encounter. Visitors are likely to appreciate your site and link to it if you publish a short tutorial or a video providing a solution, or a practical tool. Survey or original research results can serve the same purpose, if they turn out to be useful for the target audience. Both methods grow your credibility in the community and increase visibility. This can help you gain lasting, merit-based links and loyal followers who generate direct traffic and “spread the word.” Offering a number of solutions for different problems could evolve into a blog which can continuously affect the site’s reputation in a positive way.”

“It’s important to clarify that any legitimate link building strategy is a long-term effort. There are those who advocate for short-lived, often spammy methods, but these are not advisable if you care for your site’s reputation. Buying PageRank-passing links or randomly exchanging links  are the worst ways of attempting to gather links and they’re likely to have no positive impact on your site’s performance over time. If your site’s visibility in the Google index is important to you it’s best to avoid them.”

“Finally, consider making linking to your site easier for less tech savvy users. Similar to the way we do it on YouTube, offering bookmarking services for social sites like Twitter or Facebook can help spread the word about the great content on your site and draw users’ attention.”

If you found this link building post helpful, why not subscribe to my Blog by RSS Feed or Email and receive free Professional SEO Tips and Market News, direct to your inbox. As ever, please feel free to comment on this post.

Ecommerce Web Design Services

Attempting to improve the conversion rate of an ecommerce website should be high on the list of priorities for any webmaster. Focusing on optimising your product pages, in order to achieve a higher conversion rate, is a worthwile investment of your time, and can help to improve both sales volume and profitability.

Google recently published a range of worthwhile tips on how to improve the product page conversion rates, for ecommerce websites. The top 10 most useful tips from this report are as follows:

Product Descriptions

  • Sell the benefits of your products, not their features. Your customers are only interested in purchasing the benefits of your products, not their features. Therefore explain to your customers that the fridge freezer they are considering buying is energy efficient and the low running costs will save them money, rather than highlighting the extra deep shelves and a built in wine rack.
  • Try and create original sales copy instead of using the standard product description provided by the manufacturer. This is a great way to set you apart from your competitors.

Product Images

  • It is essential to use professional, high quality, product images.
  • Use a minimum of 3 to 4 images for each product. This will enable your customers to view each product from different angles.
  • Adding the functionality for visitors to zoom in and get a closer look at the product is a useful feature that helps to improve the overall online shopping experience, especially if this feature is not available on your competitors websites.

Delivery and Stock

  • Include up to date and accurate stock levels, prominently displayed on each product page. Your customers will have more confidfence in purchasing from you if they know that the product is in stock.
  • Your customers want to know how quickly they will receive their orders and the delivery cost. Provide this information on every product page, if possible.
  • Run free delivery promotions. This offers a great way to boost conversions during slow sale periods.

Other Important Elements

  • Product reviews will help to improve conversions, but make sure to only use legitimate reviews.
  • Make sure that your product pages display a concise and clear call to action such as an “add to shopping cart” button.

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Highly affordable search engine optimisation solutions

Sometimes it is necessary to delete a page from your website either permanently of temporarily. When this happens it is important that you provide specific instructions to the search engines, in order to protect your Page Rank and back link profile. If you do not follow the correct procedure for this, then you will lose all of the ranking collateral and link popularity for the deleted page.

You can protect the Page Rank and Link Popularity of a specific web page by implementing a Meta Redirect. However, it is important to ensure that you set up the correct type of redirect to ensure that this does not have a negative impact on your rankings and prevent out of date web pages from passing on their full ranking and link popularity value.

There are three primary types of redirect:

301 Redirect

This type of redirect informs the search engines that your web page has been permanently redirected to a new URL. This is commonly used when redesigning websites and when web pages have been permanently deleted. The key benefit for this type of redirect is that it transfers all of the historical ranking authority including Page Rank and back links to your new URL. 301 redirects are considered to be the most SEO friendly.

302 Redirect

This type of redirect informs the search engines that your web page has been temporarily suspended. It is commonly used when it is necessary to make major changes that requires a web page to be suspended for a period of time. 302 redirects do not transfer Page Rank, link popularity, or any other SEO value to alternative URL’s.

Meta Refresh Javascript Redirect

A Javascript redirect involves placing a snippet of Javascript code in the header of your website which redirects users to a new page after a specified number of seconds. Search engines do not like this form of redirect as it can be subject to abuse.

The actual code that is used to create these redirects will depend on your website/server configuration. It is therefore recommended that you seek further advice from your web designer on how to do this.

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As ever, please feel free to comment on this post and share this information with your friends and colleagues.

Social Medial LinksCreating an awareness of your online brand should be an important part of your internet marketing strategy. Many customers use Google and other search engines to find more details about your company before they purchase. Therefore, an effective brand management strategy can help your business convert more online customers.

Developing social media profiles across a range of popular social media websites offers an ideal opprtunity to improve the general awareness and visibility of your online business. When customers are searching for information about your company, your social media profiles will provide them with additional information, positive reviews and links to your website.

You will need to register with each social networking site in order to create your brand pages and social media profiles.

When creating your social media profiles remember to include as much information as possible about your company, your products and unique selling points. Include any positive reviews or testimonials you have received and always remember to link back to your main site where possible.

To help boost the ranking of these pages it is a good idea to link to your social media profiles as much as possible. This can be achieved by linking from various pages of your website, cross linking between the social media pages and including links in your articles or blog posts.

Examples of popular social networking sites you can start with are as follows:

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Have you ever considered how the loading time of your web pages might impact on your search engine rankings?

google-page-speed-serviceBoth Google and Yahoo! have commented on this issue recently, so it might be a good time to take a closer look at how long it takes your web pages to load.

Google’s position on the issue has always been that the time taken for a web page to load does not have any impact in their ranking algorithm until now! As part of their initiative to “Speed Up The Web“, Google have stated that page load times might possibly become a consideration in the future.

Google’s Matt Cutts has stated that, “We want the web to be faster and we want sites to load more quickly, so it’s very possible that, in the future, Google could consider rewarding fast loading websites, via improved search engine results.

Take a look at what Matt Cutts has to say about the topic below:

Another interesting development has come from Yahoo!, who recently filed a patent with regards to web page loading times.

Their Patent Abstract summary states the following:

“Methods and systems are provided that may be used to characterise in some manner the performance that a user may experience when accessing a web document.”

The patent application goes on to discuss establishing some kind of user experience information which could be used to rank search results. Obviously web page load time will play a big part in the user experience, so this would be a contributing factor.

The patent application states:

“For example, information relating to whether a user might abandon or wait for a web document to be displayed may be useful when establishing certain quality or relevance factors for the web document.”

As both Google and Yahoo! appear to be placing increased relevance on the issue of page load times, it might be a smart move to ensure that your website has been optimised to load as quickly as possible, ahead of any potential changes to the search engine algorithms. Your Web Site Designer should be able to help you with this.

Apart from helping to make your site more search engine friendly, any improvements in speed will definitely help to improve your sites appeal to your visitors as well as improving your Web Page Optimisation efforts.

If you found this post helpful, why not subscribe to my Blog by RSS Feed or Email and receive free Professional SEO Tips and Market News, direct to your inbox. As ever, please feel free to comment on this post.

Getonfast Banner Advertising Service

Internet Banner Advertising and Search Engine Advertising  are very different online marketing models.

Search engine advertising (commonly referred to as Pay Per Click Advertising) offers a very basic form of presentation, in as much as the content of your advertisement is restricted to text only and a limit is placed on the maximum number of characters that can be used per line. The maximum number of lines are also restricted.

Search Engine Advertising has limited text available to promote your product.

Google for example will only allow 3 lines of text plus your URL. The first line is reserved for the title of your advertisement and is restricted to a maximum of 25 characters. This is followed by two lines of description, each restricted to a maximum of 35 characters per line. Obviously this limits the amount of information you can use to promote your product and you will need to consider the content of your advertisement very carefully.

This type of text based advertisement will only allow you to promote a small number of product benefits and offers only limited value, in terms of promoting and increasing the brand awareness of your product or service.

If the criteria for measuring the success of your advertising campaign includes both brand awareness and sales achieved, then web banner advertising offers a more flexible solution.

Internet Banner Advertising allows media rich display advertisements.

Internet Banner Advertising Campaigns will enable you to use media rich, banner display advertisements. Web banner advertising design can include your logo, your corporate colours, flash animation or even video. Internet banner advertising campaigns allow you to promote your brand image in a similar way to offline advertising, except that the creative content can be more dynamic and interesting.

Obviously you will need to factor in the creative costs of producing your web banner which will be significantly more than the cost of creating a simple text based advertisement. However, in my opinion, the brand building benefits of running a media rich, web banner advertising campaign, far outweigh the cost of production.

Web Banner Advertising campaigns can include a wide range of different banner shapes and sizes.

Most internet banner advertising networks will accept a wide range of different sizes and shapes of web banners and there are no restrictions on the amount of words/characters you can use in your message. The most common banner sizes used for internet banner advertising campaigns are as follows:

  • Banners (460 x 60 pixels)
  • Leaderboards (720 x 90 pixels)
  • Skyscrapers (120 x 600 pixels)
  • Rectangles (300 x 250 pixels)

Search engine advertising (PPC Advertising) has proven to be a very popular method of online advertising, as the advertiser only incurs a cost when a potential customer clicks on the advertisement and visits the advertisers website. What is not so well known is that internet banner advertising campaigns can be purchased on exactly the same basis. The average cost per click for web banner advertising compares very favourably to search engine advertising. Depending on your industry category you may find that internet banner advertising offers a considerably cheaper alternative.

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It would seem that the official view from Google regarding the use of Geo Meta Tags, is that there is no major benefit to be gained, in terms of Web Page Optimisation.

Google’s Matt Cutts has posted a video discussing this topic and states that Google attaches very little importance to assigning country association Geo Meta Tags, to your website.

You can watch Matt’s video below.

Geo Meta Tags are recognised meta tag elements that provide information on your website’s location and country.

According to Matt, there are more established elements Google can use to determine the home country of your website, including your IP address, top-level domain and association in Google Webmaster Tools.

An excellent tip, if you have different content (on subdomains for example), is that you can specify each of these in Google Webmaster Tools, and assign country associations to each specific page. This can be very handy if your website is available in multiple languages for example.

 

google-sitemaps-logoSitemaps are an ideal way for website owners to help search engines crawl deeper and index more pages on their sites.

A lot of websites have a dedicated web page that contains links to all of the sites internal pages. This is primarily used to assist the user in navigating around a website and can be very useful, especially on large websites containing hundreds of pages. Additionally this type of Sitemap provides additional navigation links for search engines, which will help them to find more of your sites internal pages.

However in 2005 Google announced an ‘approved’ XML Sitemap format as the preferred method for indexing websites. This was quickly adopted by Yahoo and MSN. An XML Sitemap is actually a source file which is uploaded to your server. This file will be found by the search engines and used as their preferred navigation route, when indexing your web pages.

I review many websites where a number of internal pages have not been indexed by Google and installing an XML Sitemap will help the search engines to find these non indexed web pages.

Until now, there has been very little research to determine how effective XML Sitemaps really are. However, Google have recently published a detailed XML Sitemaps study, which provides us with an insight into their effectiveness.

The purpose of the Google study was to measure XML Sitemap usage over the last few years in order to determine how Sitemap files have improved the following:

  • Coverage – how effective are Sitemaps at assisting Google to crawl the web deeper and find new content that it might not have found previously
  • Freshness – do Sitemaps assist Google to crawl new or updated content faster, when compared to the normal crawl.

The study was based on three large websites, Amazon, CNN, and Pubmed.

Amazon’s sitemaps include around 20 million URLs. They also make every effort to indicate the best URL versions, of product pages in their XML sitemap.

CNN,s approach to XML sitemaps focuses upon helping search engines find the many new URLs which are added daily.

Pubmed contains a large archive of URLs listed in their XML sitemaps, however these are only updated on a monthly basis.

This is quite a detailed study with the final paper being 10 pages long. It is a great read if you are interested in understanding how Google Sitemaps work and how they can benefit your website. Download a copy here.

Some interesting facts from the study:

  • Approximately 35 million Sitemaps were published, as of October 2008.
  • The 35 million Sitemaps include several billion URLs.
  • Most popular Sitemap formats include XML (77%), Unknown (17.5%), URL list (3.5%), Atom (1.6%) and RSS (0.11%).
  • 58% of URLs in Sitemaps contain the last modification date.
  • 7% of URLs contain the change frequency field.
  • 61% of URLs contain the priority field.

If you are not using XML Sitemaps on your website, then this study highlights the need for you to consider adding them.

If you would like help adding an XML Sitemap to your website please Contact Us or alternatively visit our Professional SEO website for further information.

reconsideration-request

Has your website been banned  from Google’s search engine results or penalised in some way?

Learn how to submit a best practice “Google Reconsideration Request”.

If you are responsible for developing or maintaining a website, it is important that you familiarise yourself with the Google Webmaster Guidelines.

In particular you should pay close attention to their  “Quality Guidelines” which detail some of the illicit practices that may lead to your site being removed entirely from the Google search engine results or otherwise penalised.

According to these guidleines the following practices will almost certainly result in your website being penalised by Google:

  • Avoid hidden text or hidden links.
  • Do not use cloaking or sneaky redirects.
  • Do not send automated queries to Google.
  • Do not load pages with irrelevant keywords.
  • Do not create multiple pages, subdomains or domains with substantially duplicate content.
  • Do not create pages with malicious behaviour, such as phishing or installing viruses, trojans or other badware.
  • Avoid “doorway” pages created just for search engines or other “cookie cutter” approaches such as affiliate programmes with little or no original content.
  • If your site participates in an affiliate programme, make sure that your site adds value. Provide unique and relevant content that gives users a reason to visit your site first.

Although the above cover the most common forms of deceptive or manipulative behaviour, this is not a comprehensive list. Google states that they may respond negatively to other misleading practices not listed here, such as, tricking users by registering misspellings of well-known websites. It is not safe to assume that just because a specific deceptive technique has not been mentioned on this page, Google approves of it.

If your website is judged to be in violation of the editorial guidelines and has been removed from the Google index or penalised in some way, you will need to fix the violation issues and then submit a “Reconsideration Request”, to ask Google to reinstate or stop penalising your site.

What is a “Google Reconsideration Request”?

The following official Google video, featuring Rachel Searles and Brian White, from Google’s Search Quality Team, explains the process and provides tips on how to create a good, best practice  “Reconsideration Request”.

The main tip from the video is that you should check the Google Webmaster Guidelines, before submitting your “Reconsideration Request”, if you are unsure why you have been penalised.

Rachel also mentions that you should include in your request all the changes that you have made to fix the problem, rather than just telling them that your site now follows the guidelines.

Brian states that you should not try and fool Google by submitting misleading information. This will not help your case, as your request will be reviewed by actual humans and if the information you provide is incorrect they will simply disregard your request for reconsideration.

If you are having issues with Google penalising your site, then I would recommend watching this video.

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Alternatively visit our main Website Promotion website for further information.