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Orange SEO blog discusses anything new and current in the digital marketing industries. Because we work with influencial people in the digital marketing scene we are always on the cutting edge.

 

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of SEO

Michael Richmond

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SEO is not an easy business to be in. The clients have unrealistic expectations and they have no understanding of the SEO world even if you have explained it to them. In this blog I will give you a real world idea of being in the SEO business. Some of it is good, some of it is bad, and a lot of it is ugly!

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SEO is a skill that a lot of people don't have because they don't teach it in traditional schools. There is very little that the general public knows of SEO. I mean, you can read a bunch of SEO blogs and try to get an understanding but the truth is you probably just hit the peak of the iceberg. If you tried to dig deeper you probably found out that it was confusing, overwhelming and there not an easy guidebook to read about SEO. 

SEO has taught me a lot and here is a long list to give you an example of what you have to know to be successful at it:

  • Website development
  • Website optimization
  • Create unique content
  • Keyword research
  • In-depth data and analytics
  • Maximizing user experience
  • Utilizing the funnel processes
  • Keep up to date with trends
  • Maintain a social media presence 
  • Make pay-per-click campaigns
  • Create promotional advertisement
  • Understand ranking tools
  • Crawling tools
  • Analytics tools
  • SEO software
  • Link building
  • On-page tactics
  • Off-page tactics
  • Reputation management
  • And much more

The skills you have to learn to do SEO effectively is a long list but once you learn them you are very valuable to companies, people, your own business, and other organizations that simply need help online. Once you are a true expert of SEO you can help companies get maximum exposure online so their customers can find them easily and that knowledge in today's world is priceless.

White hat SEO is the best method to rank organically on the search engines. Without it, the odds of you ranking high out of pure luck is very low. Proper SEO make sure the websites are using the Google webmaster guides so Google can get the right information from your website and rank you properly. If you do good SEO for a long period of time and your visitors keep coming back to your website Google will give you the honors of ranking on the first page. There is no better way to rank on the search engines than by having an effective SEO strategy.

The Bad

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SEO is a process. Customers want to get ranked high under a keyword right away and they think that once they reach that goal their business will be successful. That's the idea, right? In theory yes that is the goal but it is not that simple. If you are trying to rank for a highly competitive keyword that has high search volume that could take six months to a year or more.

Most people are not willing to wait that long and so they go to another SEO company that lies and says they will get them the number one spot for that highly competitive keyword right away. The problem is they didn't tell that customer that it will be under the Google AdWords sponsor section and not under the google organic search section. Now there is nothing wrong with using Google AdWords but they just lied to this company because they don't know better. Now, this company has to do pay per click campaigns and for being in that sponsored section it is very expensive and does not have a high ROI if you do it incorrectly. 

My advice to companies that want to do REAL SEO is it is a process and you are not going to see results right away. Especially if it is a competitive keyword. If you can't pay for SEO services for 6 months to a year then don't do it because you will be wasting your money. True SEO takes time because this is a natural process if your website and SEO strategy are doing everything right you will see progressive results for the keywords you are targeting. So the first month you might rank 50, then the next month you will rank 42, and the next month you might rank 35 and so on.

Don't expect to rank number one right away unless you are trying to rank for a low competitive keyword that has no search volume. Also, if you are a small business don't try to rank for a short-tailed keyword and is not specific to an area. These general national keywords are highly competitive and large companies spend millions a year to get the top spot. For example, if you are searching "car insurance" expect to see Allstate, Geico, State Farm and so on. Try to go after keywords in your area such as "car insurance Jacksonville, FL." You have a better chance to rank on long-tailed keywords that are geo-specific. 

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The ugly truth is even if you have the best SEO company working for you and they get you that number one spot on a keyword that is competitive or has a high search volume that does on mean they are going to buy from your website. There is a million reasons why your customers are not buying from your website. It could be because you have a bad click-to-action, a poor online reputation or your prices are too high.

JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE A HIGH RANKING WEBSITE DOES NOT MEAN YOU ARE GOING TO MAKE MILLIONS OF DOLLARS A YEAR. Of course, you can narrow down the issues by testing the site but if you are a small business the odds are you don't have the budget to test a site out for a long time and make a lot of tweaks and changes to increase the user experience because it is expensive. SEO only helps you rank hight and get more traffic to your website it does not gaurantee that people will buy on your website.

In Conclusion

Yes, SEO will help rank your website high under specific keywords and could get you more traffic on the website but it does not guarantee that people will buy whatever you are selling. That is up to the invisible hand and if you are selling a product that no one wants or that they can find cheaper elsewhere then you have other issues on your hands that is not SEO related. With that being said if your business is interested in doing SEO keep the good, the bad, and the ugly in mind because SEO is a rollercoaster and you are not guarantee anything in the SEO world.

 

 

Using Wikipedia for Link Building

Michael Richmond

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Throughout the years, Wikipedia has turned into a minefield for advertisers, regularly causing more inconvenience than it's worth. Notwithstanding, Wikipedia is as yet successful and can be utilized by content advertisers to both help with SEO and add to the mission of the world's biggest reference book. 

Content advertisers frequently misconstrue how backlinks function in Wikipedia. They surmise that if the subject is applicable, basically adding a connection to the "outside connection" segment of a page is adequate. Not really. 

Adding a connection to Wikipedia resembles surgery – if not done effectively it can cause many issues, including having your additional space recorded as spam and prohibited from Wikipedia. 

It is so hard to get and keep up a Wikipedia connect that I stopped offering this administration quite a while back. In any case, realizing that numerous advertisers will do it at any rate, I needed to share some prescribed procedures on Wikipedia backlinks. On the off chance that done effectively, it can in any case be an awesome advantage to your SEO. 

Going from do-take after to no-take after 

To start with, how about we take a gander at how backlinks have changed in Wikipedia throughout the years. At the point when Wikipedia propelled in 2001, backlinks were all "do-take after" – made for SEO purposes. With Google's substantial weighting of Wikipedia and its backlinks, advertisers rushed to get on the SEO impact. 

Wikipedia editors rapidly got on that spam was galore. The people group found a way to enable check to spam, including changing connects to "no-take after," which have less SEO impact, and making a boycott to square areas they considered spam. 

Presently, despite the fact that no-take after backlinks have less impact on SEO than do-take after backlinks, Wikipedia backlinks are still the absolute most desired in the advertising business. This is on the grounds that Google gives substantial weight to Wikipedia joins regardless of the way that they're no-take after. 

Recognizing where to interface 

I will share what truly works in securing Wikipedia backlinks, in light of my expert experience. 

Don't just search for reference required sections. Wikipedia consequently looks for and examines finished reference required formats. On the off chance that the additional connections don't add to the section's quality, they will be evacuated and possibly boycotted. 

Discover sections in critical need of cleanup and development. In these cases, you have a superior chance to contribute quality substance – extending the information shared on that theme and adding to Wikipedia's objective of uninhibitedly sharing learning. 

To discover an article requiring greater quality data, go to the all-articles-to-be-extended page. More than 1,800 articles fell into this classification in one month this fall. Investigate over one month for a perpetual supply of pages that could profit by your information. 

Knowing the sorts of connections 

Since you know where to discover places for your connections, how about we take a gander at the most appropriate sorts of connections: 

Ensure the connections originate from a dependable source. Wikipedia's tenets on dependable sources are protracted. Essentially, don't utilize independently published sources (official statements, and so forth.) and ensure that the connected site utilizes certainty checkers to guarantee exactness of substance. 

Suggested FOR YOU: 

How Well Do You Fact-Check Your Content? 

Check whether Wikipedia as of now considers the source as solid. Check whether the refered to site has its own article. For example, AdAge has its own particular Wikipedia page, which improves the probability that connections from its site will be acknowledged as a solid source. 

Check whether your refered to site has been utilized as a backlink. Go to the pursuit box and sort in the URL that you need to check. A site that has been utilized various circumstances additionally expands its odds being acknowledged as a solid source. 

In this screenshot, you can see that AdAge has been utilized 301 times as a kind of perspective in Wikipedia. You additionally can see the best outcome is AdAge's own Wikipedia page. 

Maxim wikipedia 

Snap to develop 

Ensure the connection is more than a greeting page. A connection to a point of arrival without data to help the substance is considered spam by Wikipedia editors. 

Connection specifically to the important substance page. The connection must have content that backings the data you are including. For example, in the event that you are including data about promoting, you can't just connect to your site's landing page as the legitimate source. You should interface with the correct page that backings the substance, like how you would refer to sources in an exploration paper or industry think about. 

Assembling it 

Presently it's a great opportunity to include the connection. To do things effectively, you should add to the reference book – including a larger number of connections than simply the backlink you need to incorporate. 

Here is a case of how it functions: 

Suppose you need to include a connection from The Motley Fool to the Big King sandwich article on Wikipedia. The connection identifies with the publicizing of the Big King in 2014 – that area is unfilled in the section. Including the connection not just empowers you to put the connection you need however it additionally contributes emphatically to Wikipedia. 

How-it-functions 

Snap to develop 

You likewise have a USA Today reference about promoting of the Big King – in spite of the fact that you're not hoping to secure a backlink to USA Today, consolidating it adds validity to the section. 

Presently, you should compose the substance for the passage that is bolstered by the references: 

"In 2014, Burger King reintroduced the Big King as immediate rivalry to McDonald's Big Mac. (USA Today reference) Part of its promoting effort was that the hamburger utilized on the sandwich was greater than that of the Big Mac. (The Motley Fool reference)" 

By fusing two dependable sources into the additional data, you increment the odds that your expected connection (The Motley Fool) will survive examination. I additionally recommend including, significantly more, substance to the section to really improve the estimation of your commitment. 

TIP: Follow the best possible organization to include joins. I go top to bottom into how to do this with a three-advance guide for including references. Make a point to comprehend what you are doing – including a connection erroneously can prompt a proofreader blaming you for spamming notwithstanding when you aren't. 

Taking everything into account, I can't emphasize it enough – don't just connection from Wikipedia for connecting. Make a point to do it effectively and contribute en route. Acquainting content that includes quality with the reference book is probably going to enable your connect to keep going quite a while and enormously advantage your SEO endeavors. Keep in mind that there is NEVER a certification with Wikipedia so any procedure you utilize isn't idiot proof, only a best practice.

Advantages of the Google Webmaster Tool

Michael Richmond

The google webmaster tool has come a long way. Previously it was a useless tool that you can use to verify your website and see different errors. Now it is essential for your business to have and can also help you rank better.

Since I have been using it for all my clients there ranking went up 120%. Just verifying your website on the google webmaster tool is not enough. Below is six step process you can do when you first start using the webmaster tool.

Google has been adding more features and value to the webmaster to so more people and businesses use it. Even though it seems like another thing you need to verify with google it is now becoming more and more important. You will see your website ranking and traffic go up if you use it correctly and it can tell you some mistakes you are making as well.

1. Verify your website

Verifying your website in the Google webmaster tool is easy compared to what you had to do previously. The easiest thing to do is by using the alternate method of taking the google verify meta tag and adding it to your website home page header code. The second easiest way is by taking the Domain tracking information and adding it to your website domain information. The third easiest way is by downloading the google verification page and adding it to a file on the backend of your website. Some of these processes like the domain information will take a day for google to verify.

 

 

2. Add a Sitemap to help Google index relevant pages

A sitemap is like an index in a book.  It tells Google about the structure of your site.   You don't have to build this sitemap manually, there are tools available that can do it.  For example, there are WordPress plugins that will build a sitemap.

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A Sitemap outlines the structure of your website

If you have the video on your site you also need to install a video sitemap.  This allows Google to index video on your site instead of redirecting visitors off to YouTube or similar sites.

 3.  Optimize Existing Posts to Increase Traffic

In the traffic section under search queries, Google shows you the keywords that are used to find your website and the position in the search results.  You can review this, improve it and generate better results.

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Google Webmaster displaying impressions

In the example above there are some search terms that are appearing in search results but not many people are clicking on these results.  For example,  Google Keyword tool appeared 2,500 times and got less than 10 clicks.   I have a blog post directly relevant to this so I should be getting clicks.

Blog post – How to use Google Keyword Tool to Increase Traffic to Your Blog

Title – How to use Google Keyword Tool to Increase Traffic to your blog

So there are a few things I can do to increase traffic to this post:

a). Linking from another post to this blog post.  In this post, I have linked to the post using the keywords ‘Google Keyword Tool', that will help Google understand what this post is about.

b). Change the title.  The words at the start of a title are more important than the words at the end so I've updated the title to the following which will help:

Google Keyword Tool – How to use to increase traffic to your blog.

With the keywords at the start that will help.

c). Get links back to this post.  The best way to increasing ranking will be to get links back from external (high profile) websites that have these keywords in the link!

 

4. Tidy up your site links

When Google starts liking your site it displays a few additional links within the search results as follows:

These site links are automatically created by Google but within webmaster tools, you have some control over them. You can demote up to 100 different links so gives you a better chance of putting in the best links.  By demoting links that are not useful this should help point out the better links and you'll get more clicks.

 

5. Resolve any HTML Errors

Google reports on some HTML errors that will affect the indexing of your site so it's important to resolve these issues.  If you resolve these issues this will improve the chances of getting more traffic to your site.

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Some improvements required to Meta Descriptions

In the above example, the description tag (which is displayed when someone searches) is duplicated on some posts. This needs to be resolved.  Quite often you will find some Titles that are duplicated which should be resolved also.

6. Resolve any server errors

It is not going to do you any benefit having server errors and it's likely that it will cause your harm.

The following shows errors returned for content that should not be indexed.  So, to resolve these issues I had to block access to this directory from google.

 

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Server Errors Displayed within Google Webmaster Tools

One way to tell Google not to index content is to update the file robots.txt.  This file is read by Google when it attempts to index that site.  If I wanted to remove access to the plugins directory I'd enter the following: disallow: /wp-content/plugins

How and Why Should I Start A Blog On My Website?

Michael Richmond

Something I get all my clients to do, even before I start working with them on their digital marketing strategy, is starting a blog on their website. This is not easy because most small to medium size business owners are so busy they don’t have time to write a blog post on a regular basis. If you are reading this and you are that type of business owner let me tell you some reasons why having a blog on your website is so important from a search engine optimization (SEO) standpoint. If you are still not convinced then I will have other options as well on how to start and maintain a blog.

Search engine optimization (SEO) reasons why you should have a blog:

1: A top ranking factor for Google is to see that you have new and relevant content on your website on a consistent basis such as once a month or once a quarter at the very least.

Google Ranking Factors

2: Google looks at something called keyword density on your website to decided what your business is about and what you offer. The more relevant keywords you use related to your products or services the higher Google will ranking for that keyword in the search engines.

3: A blog lets your customers know you are an expert in your field if they can see a lot of educational blog posts on your website.

4: You can tag or cite other people or businesses in your industry to gain interest. If someone with many followers shares your content on their network it will give you a boost in traffic and rankings on the search engines

5: You can use your blog posts on your social media networks to keep your followers interested in your company and gain new followers which also helps push traffic to your website. This lets your previous and new customers stay in the loop of your new or existing products and services. If it catches their interest enough they might message, email, or even call you.

Adding a Blog:

You can add a blog on to any website no matter if it is a Drupal, WordPress, Joomla, Squarespace, Wix, and any other website creation platform. If you don’t know how to do it you can contact your website guy. If you don’t have a website guy you can just contact us, Orange SEO, and we can set one up for you. I won’t explain how to add a blog on all the website platforms so I will just do it for the most popular one that many of my customers have which isWordPress. Now, WordPress is not my favorite platform to use but most of my clients use it because it is what they have had for years. There are newer a better platform in my opinion but everyone has different preferences.

WordPress Blog Setup:

1.       Go to Categories and create new one and title is as blog or something with the blog name in it

2.       Go to Post

3.       Add a new post

Wordpress Blog

4.       Give the post a title of what you are writing about

5.       Write the blog content in the body or description

6.       Make sure you check off blog in the categories section next to the body

7.       Add photos in to your blogs using add media next to the title

8.       Press the publish button when you are done

Wordpress publish

 

9.       Go to the menu section in appearance

10.   Add a new link menu titled blog

11.   Add the URL for the blog category to the menu link

12.   Save the changes to the menu section

13.   The blog link should be live on your website

14.   Test it out on the website if you are having issues.

If you don’t see the blog link or you messed up you can watch this YouTube video for visual help

Lastly, if you know you can’t keep up with a blog on a monthly or quarterly basis you can hire a content writer or you can have one of your staff write it for you. At Orange SEO we have writers that will put content on your blogs and distribute it on multiple online networks. In the long run, you are going to need a blog section if you want to rank high on the search engines. It does not have to be the best blog ever but it does have to consist of your time or your money to get it done. It will help get new customers to the website and keep them there so you don’t have customers leaving your website after a couple seconds. Most importantly Google will start to notice your website more over time and rank you higher.

What is Schema And Structured Data and How Does It Apply To SEO

Michael Richmond

What is Schema Markup?

Schema markup is code (semantic vocabulary) that you put on your website to help the search engines return more informative results for users. If you’ve ever used rich snippets, you’ll understand exactly what schema markup is all about.

Here’s an example of a local business that has markup on its event schedule page. The SERP entry looks like this:

Schema tells the search engines what your data means, not just what it says.

The content on your website gets indexed and returned in search results. Obviously. But with schema markup, some of that content gets indexed and returned in a different way.\

Schema markup helps your website rank better for all kinds of content types. There is data markup for…

  • Articles
  • Local businesses
  • Restaurants
  • TV episodes and ratings
  • Book Reviews
  • Movies
  • Software Applications
  • Events
  • Products

Steps on how to use it on your website

  1. Go to Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper.

2. Select the type of data tha you plan to markup

3. Paste in the URL of the page or article that you want to markup

4. Highlight and select the type of elements to be marked up

5. Create the HTML

6. Use the Structured Data Testing Tool to find out what your page will look like with the added markup.

Once the code is pasted, I click “preview.” The testing tool shows me what the article will look like in Google search results:

Tips on using schema markup.

The purpose of this article was to get you started in the world of schema markup. It’s a big world.

The next few tips will show you how to dive even deeper, and gain even richer results from schema.

Find the schemas that are most commonly used.

Schema.org provides a list of the most common types of schema markup. You can visit the Organization of Schemas page to see this list. Check out the types that are best suited to your business.

Schema Markup for Now and the Future

As simple as schema markup is to implement, it’s surprising how few businesses and websites have taken advantage of it.

Schema markup is one of those SEO innovations that will probably be with us for a long time. Now is the time to learn and implement the relevant microdata to improve your search results. Doing so right away will put you ahead of the curve, giving you a leg up on the competition.