And so we bid farewell to another search engine. Alas Cuil we hardly knew thee.
Launched with much fanfare by the press in late July 2008, Cuil boasted a larger index than any other search engine. It displayed it’s results with a nicely composed page of long descriptions and thumbnails, which at the time was a rather refreshing change to the stark Swiss-like simplicity of other engine . It seemed at the time a breath of fresh air but as is the fate of all search engines people collectively shrugged their shoulders and went back to Google. Leaving us once more to ponder it’s unstoppable monopoly.
I was talking to a client the other day about the factors that Google uses to order the SERPs, it made me think that this information could be useful for our blog readers. So here we go, a brief SEO 101.
On page Techniques:
- Use of keywords in your Title Tag, preferably at the start.
- Use of keywords in the root domain name, in otherwords a keyword domain.
- Use of keywords in your H1 headline, preferably at the start.
- Use of keyword anchor text in internal site links, preferably contextually and not just on your navigation.
- Use of keywords in the first 100 words of the page.
Factors the Search Engines are looking for:
- The level of trust and authority held by your domain, so PR factors like domain age, links, references on the web, returning traffic and so on.
- The number of links pointing to your page.
- The keywords used in the anchor text of the links pointing to your page.
- The keywords used in the text of you webpage.
- The amount of traffic and the click through rate from the SERP’s for your domain.
Things to avoid:
- Malware on your website.
- Buying links rather than building links – avoid known link brokers.
- Links from your site to spam sites.
- Server down time and unreliable hosting.
SEO has its fair share of buzz words these days (we are marketers after all), one that is particularly common of late is “link baiting”. Don’t worry if you haven’t heard of this term before or if you’re not sure what it actually means because it’s quite simple really…
The term “link baiting” refers to a simple strategy for naturally increasing the number of links to your website, and as we all know the more links you have coming in to your website the higher your page rank and the better your site will rank in the SERP’s. Link baiting is a completely natural approach to link building and will leave your site with genuine, organically built links; it does not involve buying links, endlessly commenting on blogs, using any automated posting software or anything wacky like that. With this system other people will build links to your website for you and best of all it is so simple that any website owner can do it.
So what is the catch and how does it work?
Ok, lets get down to brass tacks…link baiting…lets think about it. The clue is in the name – so we are laying bait to promote people to link to our sites. I guess the big question is, what is the bait?
The bait can be anything that engages people, something they like, use, need or enjoy – something so engaging and attention grabbing they just have to link to it. So what type of content can cause enough of a fuss that people, without being asked, decide to link to your website? Well the first question is probably what kind of people are you looking to attract and what will engage them? This is when market research and a good knowledge of your customers comes into play, the answer is very different depending on the type and role of your website.
Common types of “link bait” include Interviews with industry guru’s, useful industry tools, great articles, specialised reports, contests, reviews, controversial opinions, free resources and tools, “how to” articles and videos, and anything else that you think might appeal you your audience.
In short, what you are looking to do here is build a good website. If you build a high quality, well thought out, engaging website that is focused around the user then you should never need to build a single link to your website – given time they will come to you.
To go back to Google phrase from time gone by, “content is king”.
Secure searches for Google.com users are now available at https://www.google.com helping us all make private searches even if we are connecting via an unsecured network (even the Google maps sniffer car can’t snoop on that – see my previous post). With the use of an SSL Google are effectively creating an encrypted tunnel between your browser and their servers, meaning that your searches cannot be sniffed out by people wanting to gather data on you.
Using technology commonly found on ecommerce sites, Google have improved security across the web for the user, not to mention making browsing in China an all together safer experience.
Google’s all seeing eye just keeps on getting worse! As if the whole streetcar invasion wasn’t enough bad press they just had to go one step further…
Taking unauthorised pictures of people and property left a bad taste in the public’s mouth, but Google’s most recent scandal takes the biscuit! Incase you hadn’t heard, Google’s latest potential law suit involves the monitoring of data sent over unsecured Wi-Fi networks in 30 countries.
Only after the German authorities requested to view Google’s logs did Google admit to having gathered `pay load` data as well as SSID’s and MAC addresses by sniffing packets on open networks and loging what was been sent and received. Google amassed a total of 600Gb of data via their already controversial street view cars.
Just another story indicating the importance of encrypting your Wi-Fi network.