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Archive for the ‘Search Engines’ Category

Google’s Disavow Links Tool

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

 Google Announces New Tool in Your SEO Arsenal

One of the primary factors Google takes into account when determining your website’s rankings are the quality and relevant websites that link to you.  As an example, if you are a certified Whirlpool technician and the Whirlpool.com website lists your business and links to your website, that is a quality, relevant link coming to your website.

With the introduction of their Panda and Penguin algorithm updates over the past year and a half, many in the SEO industry have speculated that you could damage your competitor’s rankings by building spammy links to their website.  This is called “negative SEO”.   It’s also possible a website owner hired an SEO company who was not following best practices, and built spammy links to their website and damaged their rankings.  Because of the importance of links it would be nice to have a way to tell the search engines to ignore those bad links coming into your website.  When Bing launched their Disavow Links tool back in June the industry called upon Google to do the same.

Yesterday Google announced the launch of their own version of the Disavow Links tool.   Matt Cutts encourages website owners to use the tool judiciously, and only after you’ve tried to have the bad links removed from the offending websites and blogs.

 Here is Matt Cutts’ video on the subject:

 

 

Client: “SEO My Site”

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

Response: “Not Without a Culture Change”

One of the biggest challenges in our industry is the endless cornucopia of bad advice, misinformation and misunderstanding about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  A basic thing to understand about SEO is that it is not the be-all-end-all.  It is only a single tool in your online marketing toolbox.  SEO is also not something super-secret you do to your website.  It is not something you do once, high-five each other and forget about.  It is part of a comprehensive strategy.

Comprehensive means blogging, social media and all the things that cause loud groans and eye rolls when I mention them to clients.  Which typically means a Culture Change within your organization.  Sorry, but if you’re in a competitive market you must be doing these things for your SEO.  And guess what?  If you’re doing them right it will also increase your exposure to potential customers!

And therein lies the culture change that many organizations must decide to embark upon for their future health.  Not many people like to write, and fewer people are actually good at it.  Blogging and content writing are often the largest objections I get when people ask “what needs to be done so I rank better?” and I explain how crucial social media and blogging are for SEO.  Sure you can hire some company to post things on your blog and social media channels that they post on hundreds (sometimes thousands) of other blogs and social media channels.  But do that and you lose the one thing that Google loves über alles: high quality, unique content. 

At minimum your online marketing company should be your strategic advisor–helping you dream up creative ideas and campaigns.  They can also help you properly distribute your content and maximize its potential for the search engines.  However, sorry to be the purveyor of bad news, but you really should allocate internal resources to blogging and content creation.   You are, after all, the expert in your field are you not?  Leverage that expertise, tell the world about it.  Take some ownership of your online marketing — and gain some SEO love and customers in the process!