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Inbound Links – free directory listings

Inbound links are links from pages on external websites that link back to your website. Inbound links can bring new users to your site, and also give a positive signal to Google about your website’s importance.

Here are some examples of websites where you can get your business advertised in a free directory listing:

http://www.the-free-directory.co.uk/

Yell.com free listing

Thomson Local free listing

www.freeindex.co.uk

UK Small Business Directory

InUKLocal

BizBuzz

TouchLocal

Qype

thelocalweb.net

All-in-London

fyple.co.uk

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Long Tail Keyword Research

What are long tail keywords?

Keywords can be split into two main groups: short tail keywords (‘broad’ keywords) and long tail keywords (‘narrow’ keywords).

Long tail keywords usually consist of between three and five keyword phrases which are very specific to whatever you are selling.

Like normal keywords, you can use long tail keywords to define what is on your web page and what the you want to be found under in the search engine results pages (‘SERPS’).

As these long tail keywords are highly specific, they attract less traffic for the website, but the traffic you do get will tend to be higher quality traffic, so will hopefully lead to more conversions than normal keywords.

Using long tail keywords can be less expensive when it comes to pay per click campaigns, as there are less people trying to place bids on those keywords for pay per click ads on search engine results pages.

A long tail keyword could be something like ‘pilates’ while a short wail keyword is something like ‘pilates class east london’.

How do you find long tail keywords

To start with, it’s a good idea to brainstorm the topic – conduct an imaginery search or ask friends to suggest long tail keywords if they were to search for products.


Next, you could do some analysis of your competitors – look at their website to see what long tail keywords they have used.


Using analytics you can see what long tail keywords people have used to find your website. Ignore keywords that are irrelevant or too broad to define your product.

What to do next

You can use on-site seo (search engine optimisation) techniques to incorporate these long tail keywords into your website structure, navigation and content pages, titles, and so on.

To summarise, it is easier for a page to rank for a “long tail” keyphrase, because it is more specific and therefore has less direct competition. However, the downside is that less people will search for it, so the potential number of visitors is far smaller.

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Useful free seo tools

Before using any ‘SEO’ (search engine optimisation) tools to improve your website’s chance of being listed highly by search engines such as Google, it is necessary to identify what your business goals are: do you want to increase your search engine rankings, sales, click through rates, or traffic? What is it that you want your website to do better?

Search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo can be used as a starting point to see what comes up when you type in keywords, brand names, and so on. For example, typing your company into Google may bring up results that show your website, blog, Facebook page, Twitter account and so on. You can check which webpages Google and Yahoo currently index by entering ‘site:www.yoursite.com into the search box. You should also make note of your competitors to see what they are doing well.

Next I would suggest using Google’s Keyword Tool and looking at information such as ‘Global monthly searches, by volume’, ‘broad/exact/phrase match’, ‘local monthly searches’, and so on. Tutorials on how to use this tool can be found on YouTube.

Hubspot’s keyword grader tool can be used to check what is your current marketing grade and obtain information on how to improve your website score.

Another useful tool is Google’s Webmaster tools, especially ‘your site on the web’, and ‘search queries’ – an analysis of keywords used by people to find your website.

Google’s keyword difficulty tool or SEO Chat keyword difficulty check tool can be used to analyse and find keywords.

Google’s Page rank checker can be used to check the current ‘page rank’ of your website.

Free online sitemap generators are available which can be used to create an XML sitemap that can be submitted to Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines to help them when they crawl your website.

Google Trends is a tool that shows you terms that a lot of people are currently searching for on Google which you can then use on your website to generate traffic.

Google Alerts allow you to monitor important activities going on in your marketplace or niche.

You can check your backlinks and the backlinks of competitors using tools such as Majestic SEO or Open Site Explorer.

Google Analytics can be used to check for website information such as crawl errors, which pages are viewed most, landing/exit pages, keywords, html suggestions (eg duplicate titles).

I hope you find these tools useful.

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10 things to measure using Google Analytics

Using Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a free tool that can be used to measure the success of and to improve the performance of a blog or website. In order to use Google Analytics you will need to sign up for an account, and also to add some of Google’s ‘tracking code’ to each of your website pages that you wish to monitor.

Here are 10 examples of things you can use it to measure:

  1. Number of daily visitors
  2. Average conversion rate (for example: convert to a sale, sign up, download a document)
  3. Which are your most visited pages
  4. What is the average time spent on your website
  5. How often do visitors return
  6. What is the geographic distribution and language setting of visitors
  7. What is the bounce rate (do visitors stay on your website, or just visit one single page)
  8. Which pages do visitors view first (landing page) or last before they leave
  9. What type of web browsers are your visitors using
  10. If a visitor came to your website via a search engine, which keywords did they use to search

Although Google Analytics is a useful tool, you should be aware that (like many other similar packages) it is not 100% accurate, due to factors like Javascript being disabled – these users would not be counted – and automated robots being counted as a visitor.

 

 

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6 seo tips

6 seo tips
1.Choose the right keywords to optimise for. Focus on search phrases, not single keywords, and put your location in your text. There are a number of good tools available for discovering keywords.

2.Don’t be obsessed with PageRank (a score that Google assigns to a webpage). It is just one part of the ranking algorithm. A site with lower PR can often outrank one with a higher PR.

3.Use a unique, keyword focused Title tag on every page of your site.

4.Add an XML sitemap so that search engines know and understand how your website is organised.

5.Make sure that you don’t have 2 websites – www and non-www version. Decide which you want to use and 301 redirect the other to it. In other words, if you prefer to use the http://www.domain.com version, then http://domain.com should redirect to it.

6.When link building, quality is more important than quantity. One single, good, authoritative link can do more for you than a number of poor quality links.

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10 seo tips

10 SEO tips for getting your website noticed

General tips about how your website looks:

  • Make sure that your navigation buttons such as ‘Contact us’ can be seen without scrolling – try looking at your website on different computers.
  • Display your telephone number or call to action prominently on your main landing/home page.

On-page SEO tips:

  • Use meaningful page names, such as prices.htm instead of page7.htm
  • Use meta descriptions – this will help with seo and look better in Google results

Keywords:

  • What keywords do you want to rank well for? It is advisable to use Google’s Keyword Research tool to look at which keywords are going to work best (ie they have low amounts of competition and high monthly local web traffic). Then these keywords and phrases need to be inserted into Titles, Headings, bold text, alt tags and so on – in a natural way, to avoid over-stuffing with keywords.
  • Don’t overdo keywords – some people will use the term over and over again. That’s called “keyword stuffing.” This can lead to your site being removed from Google.

Off-page seo tips:

  • Google My Business: https://www.google.co.uk/business/ is a place where business owners can submit a site so it shows up in local searches, with a map attached. The first 10 non-advertising results that Google shows are often are from Google Maps, so if you have a business and haven’t submitted it, you’re losing out on potential customers.
  • Build links! Check out why Google thinks links to your website are so important:

http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2008/10/good-times-with-inbound-links.html

  • Submit your company details to online directories that are free to advertise in such as:

www.freeindex.co.uk

www.uksmallbusinessdirectory.co.uk.

  • Analyse your website hits by using software such as Google Analytics – a free tool that can be used to analyse traffic to your website.

This article was written by Jane Walker (tel. 0777 169 1194). I hope you found it useful.

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Website health check

Website Health Check

With regard to your website, how many of these suggested good practices can you tick …

□   Is your website organised into 5-8 main pages?

□   Have you tried not to rely heavily on images, with little accompanying text, which could cause problems for search engines such as Google?

□   Have you tried to avoid large images which are slow to load?

□   Have you avoided using frames, which can be difficult for search engines to follow?

□   If your website uses dynamically generated webpages which are created ‘on the fly’ such as Forums and Online stores, and can cause problems for search engines, have you considered using the ‘robots’ file to control which pages search engines visit?

□   Do you have a memorable URL (web address)?

□   If you have an intro page that uses Flash or Shockwave files, do you offer a non-flash version for older systems to access? Have you considered if your welcome page is needed?

□   Is your website written in valid HTML code? You can check this at: http://validator.w3.org/

□   Have you checked that you have meaningful page titles for each page? (the title is what appears at the top of your web browser)

□   Have you reviewed the navigation structure of your website and checked for any stray webpages that are hard to navigate to?

□   Have you considered having a sitemap on your home page?

□   Where possible, have you used filenames and directory names that are keywords?

□   Do you need to research new keywords?

□   Does your website use meta tags containing concise and precise information?

If you need any further help or advice, you can contact Jane Walker – telephone 0777 169 1194.

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Website promotion

Website Promotion Guide

Once you have a website, you need to promote it.

Check your web page design

Your website should include interesting and useful content. Use meta tags, titles and headings. Keywords are important, so think about which words you will use on each page. Your code should be HTML compliant – you can check this at: http://validator.w3.org/

Submit your website to major directories and search engines

Google is currently the most popular search engine. Google uses a complex algorithm to determine the ‘PageRank’ or importance of a web page. For this reason, you should consider submitting your website address (URL) to each of the following search engines and directories:

Google

Yahoo!

The Open Directory Project (ODP / DMOZ)

It can take some weeks before your website is ‘found’ by Google or Yahoo!, or accepted/rejected by ODP.

Web Analytics

Google Analytics is a free tool that allow you to analyse the ‘traffic’ to your website.

Online Advertising

If you have some money to spare, you could use Google AdWords to create an advert which is shown when relevant keywords are searched.

Other options include Facebook.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is the advertisement of a product, service or brand through electronic mail. It is popular as it can be much cheaper than traditional mail marketing, and can reach a wide audience in a short period of time. If it is abused, it can be regarded as spam (emails that are sent to a large number of people with little discretion). Always include an option for people to easily leave the distribution list.

Email Signatures

Whenever you send an email, a few lines of text can be added automatically to the email. These can include contact details and a tag line, advertising your product, service or brand.

Blogging

You can promote your website by writing a short article or blog which can often include a link to your website. Your article should be useful, informative and relevant.

I hope that these ideas help to improve the presence of your website on the Internet. If you need any further help or advice, you can contact Jane Walker – telephone 0777 169 1194.

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SEO tips

Marketing and SEO – some useful tips

Do you want to generate new leads and sales? If so, it is important to regularly review your marketing strategy.

Marketing is not just about improving your website or advertising online – it needs to be approached from many different angles. For example,

  • Have you done your research about who your competitors are, what they do well or what puts you off their products?
  • Who is your target audience? What products / services do they want – and are you providing it?
  • How do you reach potential customers – do you attend networking events? By email newsletter? Advertising?

Writing an article or online blog can increase your market, but you should write about what you know, and make sure that it is of interest to your readers – don’t just try and sell your product directly. When drafting a media release you should write in the third person.

Do you need to use the services of a professional photographer – for printed media such as glossy magazines the quality of images is important.

Don’t forget about printed materials and branding – do you need to update your business cards, flyers, and so on?

Branding is a way of clearly highlighting what makes your product or service different to, and more attractive than, your competitors.

The main benefit of branding is that customers are much more likely to remember your business. A strong brand name and logo/image helps to keep your company image in the mind of your potential customers.

People usually associate branding with larger businesses that have the money to spend on advertising and promotion. If you can create effective branding, then it can make your business appear to be much bigger than it really is. This can be especially important when a customer wants reassurance that you will still be around in a few years time.

If you have a website, what first impression does it give? People usually on stay a website for a few seconds, so first impressions count. Colour schemes can be off putting – is your website easy on the eye? Does it look professional?

Think about what makes you stay on a website, or click away.

  • Can you add to the content, or give away something for free such as a downloadable PDF brochure?
  • Do you have testamonials from other clients on your website?
  • Do you have a professional email address (rather than a web-based free service)?
  • Do you use an automatically generated email signature at the end of emails that you send out?
  • Is your domain name effective? Does it include hard to spell words, such as jewellery (or jewelry) which is spelt in different ways by the UK and the US?
  • Have you used keywords in your titles, and changed them to reflect each individual page?
  • Have you submitted your webpage to directories, search engines and link exchanges?
  • Have you thought about adding a sitemap to your website?
  • Do you use analytics to look at traffic to your website?
  • If you have a shop or restaurant, have you placed yourself on Google Maps? You can add videos to your website, and link them to Youtube.com or Google Video. When searching Google, videos from Youtube.com, Google Video and Google Maps all appear before the normal results.

More search engine optimisation help can be found in our seo checklist blog.

I hope you found this article useful. Please feel free to contact Jane Walker on 0777 169 1194 to discuss website matters and for more SEO advice.

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SEO checklist

This checklist is designed for people who have a website, but would like to improve their Search Engine Optimisation (eg Google rankings).

□   Make sure that you use keywords, and combinations of keywords, that clearly describe the content and purpose of your website. There are tools available to help with choosing keywords, for example: www.wordtracker.com and www.keywordspy.com

□   Use the <TITLE> … </TITLE> tag to create a separate meaningful descriptive title for each page.

□   Consider using meta description tags on each page – some search engines display this information in their results lists.

□   Use keywords and phrases several times, near to the top of each page.

□   Place your keywords and phrases between Header Tags (H1, H2 or H3) in the first two paragraphs of your page, and use bold type for keywords and phrases at least once.

□   Avoid using non-descriptive page names such as “page1.htm”? Instead, try to use descriptive page names, such as “contact_us.htm”.  Similarly, for images try to use descriptive names such as “wooden_bedstead.jpg” instead of “image1.jpg”.

□   If you use a left navigation bar, the search engine will read it before the body of your page – so make sure you include your most important keywords there, too.

□   If you use graphics, include image tags which search engines can understand (for example, alt=”Wooden Bedstead”).

□   Avoid placing text in graphic format since the search engines won’t be able to read it – for this reason you should seriously consider using text rather than graphics / images for menu / navigation buttons.

□   Avoid describing all your products or services in one page. Instead, create different pages, each with its own optimised content and key phrases.

□   If you use Flash, include an HTML version of your site for users and search engines.

□   If you use a JavaScript navigation menu, include an alternate text menu at the bottom of the page, so it can be followed by search engines.

□   Create a sitemap. This includes all the pages in your site, and can be linked to from your homepage. This helps search engines to find and index all the pages in your site. Make sure that all your internal pages link to your homepage.

□   Manually submit your website to the most important search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN.

□   Work on creating inbound links to your website from quality sites.

□   Find out who is linking to your website – go to Google and type in the search box:

link:http://www. yourwebaddress.co.uk

Alternatively, in Yahoo!, type:

linkdomain:www.yourwebaddress.co.uk

□   Check how many of your pages Google has indexed – go to Google and type in the search box:

site: www.yourwebaddress.co.uk

I hope this helps with your SEO. Alternatively, contact Jane Walker on 0777 169 1194 for free advice or to discuss how I can help you on a regular basis.