Why Don’t You Rank For (insert keyword)?

the dark side

July 2013 update: The website I discuss in this article no long ranks #1 😉

If you’re so great, why don’t you rank for SEO Perth?

I used to run into questions like that quite a bit when I worked at a dedicated SEO services company. I recall whispering “serenity now!” under my breath, taking a deep breath, and enlightening dear prospect.

The truth of the matter, in my experience, is typically twofold;

1. SEO Companies Infamously Neglect Their Own Sites

Often because we’re too busy focusing on paying client work. I think we’ve justified it in the past to some extent because SEO is the type of service where the best leads come via referral. Having someone vouch for your services provides instant credibility. That is no excuse of course, and I firmly believe all SEO companies should drink the Kool-Aid.

2. The Dark Side

SEO keyword rankings for phrases such as; ‘SEO (location)’, ‘SEO services (location)’ and ‘SEO company (location)’ are some of the most obsessed-over and spammy online. The bragging rights of being able to demonstrate to potential clients that you practice what you preach is too much for the common SEO to resist, leading to a dark, downward spiral of reckless abandon!

Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will.
-Yoda

Want an example? Continue reading…

Introduction to Google Adwords Presentation

I was recently tasked with giving the account managers at Sumo an overview of Google Adwords, to help make them more familiar with the Adwords platform and it’s offerings. While I didn’t record the live presentation, I have made the slide deck available on SlideShare:

5 Easy Keyword Research Hacks for New Content Ideas

keyword research

Ever since Google dropped a giant penguin shaped bomb earlier this year, content marketing has been all the rage. But what if you’re in a rather dry or relatively dull niche that doesn’t lend itself well to blog posts or articles? Maybe you think you’ve exhausted all of the good content ideas for your topic, or perhaps you’re looking for a more tactical approach to researching new ideas for content creation. Whatever the case, the following 5 tips will reveal a veritable feast of fresh content ideas that people are actually searching for to keep you busy for the foreseeable future! Continue reading…

Diversifying Traffic Sources for Long Term Success

diversifying traffic sources

Talk to any experienced investor or wealth creation expert, they’ll tell you the key to long term success is to diversify your investments. When it comes to building traffic to a website, diversification is not only a smart investment, it may be critical to your success.

Why Diversify?

Many websites rely on one source to provide the majority of the visitors to their site, often that source is Google. Google is currently the clear front-runner in search engine referrals and provided a rich, flowing source of traffic for many years, but there’s no reason to limit yourself to one source. Many websites have actually noticed a decline in traffic from Google and there are a number of reasons why. Continue reading…

Your Burning Google Questions Answered!

You’ve noticed Google search suggest, right? It’s Google’s autocomplete algorithm that offers searches in real-time when you being typing your search query. Sometimes the suggestions are similar to what you may have been typing, often they can be actually quite bizarre, mostly I find it annoying because it seems to accidentally autocomplete my query changing it from what I intended to search for. Anyway, out of curiosity I started typing ‘is Google’ to see what would be suggested…
your Google questions answeredInteresting, right? It seems like a lot of people are searching for the answers to questions like, is Google gay? Is Google evil? Is Google God? Well, someone had to step up and answers these questions, once and for all. Continue reading…

Is Google Anti-SEO?

Does Google Hate SEO's?

It seems to be quite commonly believed that search engines are anti-SEO and hold those that call them selves SEO’s in comtempt. While I would agree that search engines hate spammy, low quality websites and attempts to manipulate search engine rankings using nefarious methods – I would argue that search engines actually value websites that are optimised for the right reasons, in accordance with their guide lines.

Why? Because it makes it easier for them to categorise and value websites.

It’s quite easy to see this is true, and just as easy to learn how to stay on their good side when Google has gone to the lengths of producing an official SEO guide, as well as many videos and blog posts over the years.

There are hundreds of ranking factors, but very broadly, here are some major factors that I believe Google, and other search engines love and hate. Continue reading…

Bing ‘Borrows’ Google Search Results

Google today made waves in the search industry claiming they had set a trap, and busted Bing using Google Search results. This seems like a pretty big deal, but Bing are calling it a PR beat-up to steal the spotlight from their search event and redirect some of the negative attention Google has been receiving lately regarding their spam/relevancy issues.

Either way it likely probably the most interesting, controversial thing to happen in search for some time. Here here’s a break down of all the juicy goss and name calling, as it happened: Continue reading…

Is it Worth Paying to Look Good on Google?

I just read a story on news.com.au headlined, ‘Is it worth paying to look good on Google?’ The title itself rang alarm bells. The article was a bit of a mish-mash of interviews and speculation, but what stood out to me is that beneath the surface, the real story seemed to be a company gloating about their methods of manipulating Google search rankings.

It seems they managed to impress journalist Simon Black by ranking for his name using this method:

Step 1. Register an exact match domain
Step 2. Install a default wordpress theme
Step 3. Scrape content from Wikipedia
Step 4. Obtain 40 low quality inbound links

That’s all it took to get to page one on Google for ‘Simon Black’ and to land a company called Online Reputation Management Australia a front page feature on news.com.au! Continue reading…

Reasons Not to Use Wix.com

Recently I’ve had two acquaintances contact me to give them some feedback on their websites. After looking into the first website, I quickly came to the conclusion that the online website builder and host they were using was detrimental to securing decent search engine rankings.

The service ignored the most basic fundamentals of search engine optimisation. When the second person came to me, I noticed they were using the same service and realised that it must be somewhat popular. The service I’m referring to is call Wix and they claim to currently host over 6 million websites!

Wix is NOT Search Engine Friendly

What? They are actually advertising that they are search engine friendly? Is this not paramount to false advertisement? Not only would I describe wix.com’s website creator and hosting service as not search engine friendly, I would suggest it is actually quite search engine unfriendly.

I can see the appeal of the service, it actually makes creating a website from scratch easy enough for most people to be able to produce something presentable, in little time. But the trouble comes when they expect search engine traffic.

Fist let me clarify, I’m describing Wix’s premium paid service in this post. I can’t imagine anyone half serious about their business or website using the free service, as you cannot use your own domain name and the free version plasters your site in wix ads.

So, what exactly makes Wix websites so search engine unfriendly? Continue reading…

Google Confirms Social Media as a Ranking Factor

Many SEO’s had assumed it, now Google has confirmed that they do in fact use data from social media profiles, like Facebook and Twitter as part of their ranking algorithm.

But before you run off and create 1,000 Twitter profiles and circle jerk them all in a linking / following scheme, Google has stated that just like links to your website, the quality of your profile and followers is more important than the quantity. Matt also mentions in the video below that Google is only using social media data, at least initially, as a very light influence in there ranking algorithm, which includes over 200 other factors. See the video below to get it straight from the horses mouth.

Does Google use data from social sites in ranking?

For more checkout the comprehensive article on Search Engine Land, What Social Signals Do Google & Bing Really Count?