Category Archives: SEO

SEO Course for Newbies: Lesson 2 – How to Perform SEO Audit?

Lesson 1

 

First question you may ask – how long does it take to audit my website? Based on my experience, most of the common problems can be identified in 10-15 minutes.

Before we get started, we need to tweak our Internet Browser to act more like the search engine crawlers – to identify simple crawling errors. In order to do this, you will need to do the following:

  1. Disable cookies in our browser
  2. Switch our user agent to Googlebot
Next, let’s look at our homepage and do the following:

  1. Pay attention to your first impression – how do you feel about the page
  2. Look at the Title tag and see if it can be improved
  3. See if our URL changed or redirected
  4. Redirect all of the variation URL to your canonical* URL

*Canonical URL: the search engine friendly URL that you want the search engines to treat as authoritative.  In other words, a canonical URL is the URL that you want visitors to see.

Next step is to verify the Global Navigation on our website. In order to do this, we need to temporary disable Javascript and reload the page and see if the global navigation still works. Many times it won’t work and it will cause major indexing issues. For now, just take note and move on to the next step.

Categories and Tags are important for search engines – not just visitors. It’s all about navigation – sorting and grouping our content to help visitors find related information. Firstly, we need to make sure we have enough interesting content on these pages to be useful as a search result. Many people don’t realise that category and subcategory pages actually stand a very good chance of ranking high in the search engine result page. When optimised correctly, these pages will have links from all of the children content pages, the website homepage and include a lot of information about a specific topic hence promote relevancy. Combine this with the fact that each link that goes to one of their children content page also helps the given page and you have a great pyramid structure for ranking success.

Next thing to do is to check the format of the Title Tags, Meta Description, URL of our website. If you are trying to rank for a very competitive term, it’s best to include the keyword at the beginning of the title tag. But if you’re competing for a less competitive term and branding , it is best to put the brand name first.

Now that you have an idea of how the website is organised and it’s time to see how the world thinks about it. Here, I would like to talk about ‘Links‘ found on the website. Links are incredibly important in the search engine algorithms. Links provide a complete view of a website. The following tools can be used to find out your ‘backlink’ and popularity

Lastly, search for your domain name to make sure it isn’t penalised and see roughly how many pages are indexed on the result page. Type in three of the most competitive keywords that relate to your website or business and see roughly how your site are displayed on the result page.The last thing to do is to quickly search for duplicate content. Duplicate content is bad because it is forcing the website to compete against itself for the rankings and for the search engine to decide which page is more valuable.

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How to Boost our Search Engine Ranking – Part 3

Links:

 

In my last post I have discussed about the important of using ‘Social Media’ to drive traffics to our site.

Today, I would like to share with you some of the paid strategies such as using Google AdWords campaign. Google AdWords is a pay per click (PPC) advertising. What does it mean? Literally, you pay a small fee to Google when someone clicks on one of your ads that shows up on the ‘Sponsored Links’ section of the Google results page. You may prefer to focus on boosting your natural search results for free with SEO. But if you have a budget, sometime trying a paid strategies even if only for short periods of time, can catapult you to success online faster – especially when you first launch your website and have no traffic or when you launch a new product or service that you want to raise awareness.

Please remember, both free and paid strategies work and they both work effectively. The only difference is speed.

Please remember, both free and paid strategies work and they both work effectively. The only difference is speed.

 


SEO Course for Newbies: Lesson 1 – What and Why SEO?

Lesson 2

SEO stands for ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ and it’s the process of getting traffic from the ‘free’, ‘organic’ or ‘natural’ listings on the search engines. As you may already aware, all major search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo will rank web pages based on what the search engine considers most relevant to the users. Therefore, SEO plays an important role in structuring a web page so that it is found, read and indexed by search engines in the most effective way possible.

Why SEO should be important to you?
Some of the issues have been discussed in my earlier post ‘Why do we need SEO‘. Literally, companies spend thousands of dollars in building a fantastic website but when someone is searching for a particular product/service in that town or country the major search engine such as Google will just show someone else website.

Typical example:
Let’s ask Google to look for ‘Malaysia National Car’, ‘Malaysia car’, ‘Malaysia Car Maker’ … without typing the word Proton. Can someone find out if Proton website ever appears on the first result page(SERP)? Now let’s try ‘Malaysia Budget Airlines’. Can you see the different?

For many people, the SEO task can be daunting, but Without proper SEO, your site could appear on page 100 of Google’s results and getting no visitors.

In the next Lesson we’re going to audit/access our current website/weblog using SEO auditing tools. To ensure you don’t miss out on this exciting lesson, please click on the link below to subscribe to my RSS feed or follow me on Twitter or Facebook.


Google Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide (FREE)

Do you own a website or blog? Are you serious about getting more traffic to your site? If the answer is YES, you need to learn how to optimize your website  or posts correctly using Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques.

SEO plays an important role in ranking our site on the first page in Google’s results by using a particular keyword and getting thousands of visitors. For many people, the SEO task of identifying the right keyword or tag can be daunting. Without proper SEO, our site could appear on page 100 of Google’s results and getting no visitors.

Good news is Google recently published a free “Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide“.

In this valuable Guide, you will learn how to: –

  1. Create unique, accurate page titles
  2. Make use of the ‘description’ meta tag
  3. Improve the structure of your URLs
  4. Make your site easier to navigate
  5. Offer quality content and services
  6. Write better anchor text
  7. Optimize your use of images
  8. Use heading tags appropriately
  9. Make effective use of robots.txt
  10. Be aware of rel=”nofollow” for links
  11. Notify Google of mobile sites
  12. Guide mobile users accurately
  13. Promote your website in the right ways
  14. Make use of free webmaster tools

Google Search Engine Optimization Starter GuideFinally..

SEO can be daunting but it’s necessary !!!

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8 major phases in SEO

(Adviseo, 2006)


Why do we need SEO?

  1. Google receives several hundred million queries each day through its various services.
  2. Nearly 80% of people searching for information online type their searches into a search engine’s search box.
  3. Nearly 50% of online searches, your prospect selects a website found on the first or second Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). So, if your company is not found in the first 10 to 20 results, you’ve already lost out on at least 50% of your potential business – while your competitors, who are highly ranked, are enjoying a lion’s share of the traffic.

(The Search Guru, 2010)

The main purpose of Search Engine Optimisation services is to improve our website ranking on major search engines. SEO is a strategy to drive not any visitors but targetted visitors to our website and turn them into our customers.

So what does the whole SEO process involve?

  1. Identify Keywords that best describe your business and receive highest search volume
  2. Improve existing content and develop new content with images and meta information
  3. Use of social media and any other strategy to maximise external websites that link to our site.
  4. Analyse your competitors and take advantage of their weaknesses in online marketing

Interested to find out more? Please join our FREE SEO Course for Newbies now.


What is SEM?

I have recently bumped into my old best friend from high school. We had couple of drinks in the pub and shared some of the ‘moments’ during our school days. She is now married with 2 kids and running a high street boutique store in Singapore. She thought of setting up an online store to market her collections but she worried if anyone will actually buy from her online store later.

I am really glad, she see the potential problems! To be honest, by having an online store on the internet doesn’t mean people will have to or automatically buy from us. There are so many similar stores around the world selling the same stuffs. Question now is, how can we make sure our store get listed when someone perform a search via Google or any other search engine. What sort of strategy should we use?

SEM is The Answer!

Wikipedia defines “Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in search engines via the “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results.”

How Google works?

Google crawls the internet every seconds for web pages and indexes them in a huge catalogue.  Unlike in the past, we no longer require to manually submit our website to Google. Google will find your pages via incoming links from websites that are already indexed. This is why you may want to have other sites to link to yours.

To get your pages to rank at the top of the search result is the hardest part.  Google decides which are the best pages (combination of best match for the search query and the ones that have the best rank). HOW? This is what Search Engine Marketing (SEM) will achieve for you.

Please note: Without a website, you DON’T exist but without a good search strategy, you EXIST but you’re invisible in the online world