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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – Getting on in Google

Daniel Wood 07791 100 639 Daniel@seasonsbounty.com www.seasonsbounty.com

Version 1 - 10th January 2010

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google Contents Summary / Abstract ..................................................................................................... 3  Introduction.................................................................................................................. 4  What are the benefits of the Internet ........................................................................... 5  What should be done .................................................................................................. 6  Links. ........................................................................................................................... 6  Keywords and Keyphrases .......................................................................................... 6  Semantic coding .......................................................................................................... 7  Snippet ........................................................................................................................ 7  Sitemap .......................................................................................................................7  Registration ................................................................................................................. 8  Adwords ......................................................................................................................9  Further expansion ....................................................................................................... 9  White hat and Black hat SEO ...................................................................................... 9  Time established ....................................................................................................... 11  Breakdown of design process ................................................................................... 11  Conclusion................................................................................................................. 12  References / Bibliography ......................................................................................... 13  Glossary of Terms ..................................................................................................... 14 

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google

Summary / Abstract This report looks at what can be done when a company wants to gain a high PageRanking (PR) on Google for their Website. Both types of links, Sponsored links (often referred to as Pay Per Click ‘PPC’) and Non-sponsored (Organic) links, will be discussed.

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google Introduction The key to a successful business is good marketing. The internet has provided unparalleled new business communication methods and new business opportunities. Without customers knowing of your products and services a website is not fulfilling its duty. It is widely recognised that Google is the market leading Search Engine for internet users. Adwords (Pay Per Click sponsored links) and Organic (Non-sponsored links) are the two PageRanking(PR) methods used by Google. There are competitors gaining ground so the other search engines should not be forgotten: Hof, Robert D., (2009) “Google's competition has recently gone from pitiful to plentiful: Microsoft's new Bing search engine picked up 1.5 percentage points of market share in August to hit 9.5%, according to market researcher Hitwise, while Google's share fell from 71.4% to 70.2%. Bing's gain is partly thanks to a $100 million marketing blitz complete with television ads knocking Google every which way but in name. Microsoft's pending deal for Bing to become Yahoo's underlying search engine, creating a combined entity with 27% market share, could produce Google's first sizable competitor in years…. Google has about 720 million users” CAN GOOGLE STAY ON TOP OF THE WEB?. BusinessWeek, 4150: 00077135. This report will look into ways of increasing a websites’ search result performance on Google.

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google What are the benefits of the Internet Email. Easy written communication to colleagues and customers alike. Email shots, mass communication to customer with tailored messages. Website. A good website can act as a corporate company brochure, product brochure, can also provide a depository for technical information and other archiving. This means that customers are more empowered to help themselves. The restriction of printed media being ‘out of date’ as soon as it is published (any changes mean a costly reprint, unlike a fast change with web content) is now a thing of the past. This is however a double edged sword as customers have an expectation of new information being constantly added; businesses must dedicate resources to this key area of their customer communication plan. Real time communication. Instant ‘Chat’ messaging gives customers the opportunity to ask questions to trained operators. Ecommerce. Access new customers in your current market or new customers in new markets. Secure login with respective pricing allows B2B and B2C markets to be serviced. Increase business without increasing internal sales personnel costs. Customers enter their own order. Confirmation is automated by email. Dispatch is automated by email. Customers can track their own orders. All of this hard work is pointless unless customers can find the site and use it. There are traditional methods of advertising to assist this, for example magazine advertising, adding URL to any external communication – invoice, letterhead, business card, compliment slip, etc. All of these will only mean accessing current customers, for new customers SEO and/or Adwords need to be considered for Google.

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google What should be done When designing a website for good SEO it is prudent to follow certain rules at the creation stage. If it is a re-design then the same rules apply but are slightly more difficult to implement as changes. Kent(2008) notes that whilst there seems to be many search engines, the amount of indexes that are used are only from four providers – ‘Google’, ‘Yahoo’, ‘MSN’ and to a lesser degree ‘Ask’.

Links. There are three types of links, internal links, inbound links and outbound links. Links are the most important contributor to high ranking and links from high ranking websites are desirable as explained: “Google figures that when one page links to another page, it is effectively casting a vote for the other page. The more votes that are cast for a page, the more important the page must be. Also, the importance of the page that is casting the vote determines how important the vote itself is.“ Webworkshop(no date) . A web developer ‘Add-on' (a free download for Firefox is an example https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/60 ) can be used to check internal and outbound links. Internal links are created by adding more pages to the site, this improves PR. Relevant information should be included, not just low quality pages for the sake of it. When requesting inbound links ask for ‘Keyword rich’ text to be used. The aim is to have 250 – 750 inbound links. A spreadsheet should be created to track inbound link requests and actual links. Viney(2008:135) “Has an example of a tracking spreadsheet”. As the programmer does not always have control of inbound links it is important to look at these. Viney(2008)The best way is to go to http://www.yahoo.com then type in http://yoursite.com in the dialogue box. This shows all inbound links. For a pictorial representation of the links - http://www.kartoo.com/. This is a good site to look at what links competitors have. Inbound only links have the most value with SEO, with traded links in and out having the next biggest input. Outbound links have little value.

Keywords and Keyphrases It is wise to look into what the competition is doing. No more so than with Keywords and Keyphrases. Look at each competitors Metadata within their source code. This should be compared against the site being promoted to see where the gaps are. Viney(2008) A snapshot of this data can be achieved by visiting http://www.abakusinternet-marketing.de/tools/topword.htm .

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google The aim is Viney(2008:39) “Approximately 35 – 40 one word and two-word phrases and perhaps as many as 60-75 three word and four word combinations”. The longer combinations are to capture the ‘long tail’. There are a number of different sites that will give the frequency of words or phrases, one being the Google site http://adwords.google.com/select/keywordtoolexternal .

Semantic coding Priority of importance is given to Semantic code. Whatever words are used in each section should also appear in the other section. The ranking follows the rules below Viney(2008): Title. 24-64 characters, two sentences that describe the business differently, each sentence containing keyphrases (used for Snippet). Each page with its own title. The words should appear in the other parts. Metatags. 35 – 50 words. Seperate with a comma and no spaces, lower case and plurals where possible. Heading tags from H1 downwards. Anchor text. Use keywords instead of just ‘click here’. Alt tags. Use keywords to increase density for crawling. Body text. 450 – 600 words, lower end better. 3 to 4 Paragraphs for ease of reading with Keyword sprinkling. The aim is to have a high density of keywords but still have a readable text. Multiple use of the same word in close proximity to itself will gain better ranking. The use of Keyphrases in the headings and body text will improve the chances of more customers finding the site when searching on Google.

Snippet Snippets are made up from the text in the Title as described above and the text in the final paragraph of the body text. The final paragraph must be have less charaters than the shortest of the two title sentences. Viney(2008:127) “It must contain the stem of the keyphrases and be 6 – 9 words long”.

Sitemap Often the host provider will have some basic easy to use software available to use for sitemap generation. If not then www.xml-sitemaps.com is one of the places that this can be done. Sitemaps.org(no date) How to code sitemaps is as follows: www.seasonsbounty.com

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Search Engine Optimisation â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Getting on in Google Open and close with <urlset> tag and </urlset>. Specify the namespace (protocol standard) within the <urlset> tag. Include a <url> entry for each URL, as a parent XML tag. Include a <loc> child entry for each <url> parent tag. More details on how Google interprets sitemaps is available at http://code.google.com/apis/searchappliance/documentation/50/admin/webtools_inte gration.html . Submission to Google is via the Google account control panel. To submit to Ask the following URL is to be used http://submissions.ask.com/ping?sitemap=http://www.yourdomain.com/sitemap.xml. Submission to Yahoo is through an account and has a charge associated to it.

Registration Open a Google account https://www.google.com/accounts/ServiceLogin?service=adwords&cd=null&hl=enGB&ltmpl=adwords&passive=true&ifr=false&alwf=true&continue=https%3A%2F%2F adwords.google.com%2Fselect%2Fgaiaauth%3Fapt%3DNone%26ugl%3Dtrue and register site. Add the tacking code to the website and normally within 24 hours the site is active. From this point onwards Google Analytics are gathering data. The data and reports available are the most powerful marketing tool available if used correctly.

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google Adwords This is Googles version of Pay per click advertising. Each word or phrase has an associated costs made up of a number of different things with demand being a major factor. The demand and cost for the word ‘Chocolate’ would be much more than for ‘Stick’ for example. A budget is set for these words and each time a customer clicks on this search result the cost is apportioned to the account/website owner. Viney(2008:192) The basics for setting up an Adwords campaign are to create:

Headline. 25 characters. Description. 70 characters. Landing URL. 35 characters. Split testing Viney(2008:194) “ Always test two adverts simultaneously, ‘A/B split test’ once advert B surpasses advert A in CTR (Click Through Rate) it becomes the new A and a new B is introduced. Ideally this should be done for every main product or service offered by a business”.

Further expansion The other ‘off site’ things to do to improve ranking are Blogging, online press releases, posting on WIKI’s (www.aboutus.org ), Lenses, RSS (Really Simple Syndication) and ‘Add this’ button for sharing (www.addthis.com ). These all increase the inbound links. If a document is structured for a press release not the website there are some structural guidelines to follow Viney(2008:164)”Leader, Headline, Dateline & location, Body, Boiler plate and Contact information”. Web directories can be used to improve inbound links Viney(2008:149)”DMOZ is a good example of a free listing”. Add the website and business to Google maps (www.maps.google.com or www.google.co.uk/localbusinesscentre ) to achieve local listings and being found on mobile map searches.

White hat and Black hat SEO All of the processes in this report are ‘White hat SEO’ techniques. These techniques follow the search engine guidelines to ensure that the site is not penalised for any wrong doing. Buying into this level of conduct is to ensure that all companies have a fair opportunity to progress with their SEO. There are a number of techniques that are ‘hacks’ and this is known as ‘Black hat SEO’ and should be avoided.

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Search Engine Optimisation â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Getting on in Google

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Search Engine Optimisation â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Getting on in Google Time established One thing that cannot be controlled is the time a site is established. This is a factor that improves ranking. The only thing to ensure is this time is not lost if a major redesign is undertaken.

Breakdown of design process As many relevant pages as possible to increase internal links. Outbound links to high ranking site wherever possible. As many inbound links as possible. Make a list of competitors websites then look at their links, Keywords and Keyphrases. Look at frequency of words/phrases then optimise Metatags. Create one, two, three and four word combinations. Create semantic code. Create a Snippet. Create and submit a sitemap. Submit to Google, Yahoo, MSN and Ask. Start an Adwords campaign with A/B Split test. Added extras: Blogs Online press WIKIâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lenses RSS Add This Web directories Google Maps

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google Conclusion There are certain steps that can and should be taken to improve a websites PR on Google. Most articles and books agree that there is still an element of unreleased information on how Google actually works. Google publish enough information to allow some control, but keep their own ‘trade secrets’ which allows them to maintain their dominant position based on a very strong business model. It is also impossible to keep track of a company that changes the way they do things so often as portrayed by Hof, Robert D., (2009) “Google conducts some 5,000 experiments annually on those formulas and makes up to 500 changes a year.” CAN GOOGLE STAY ON TOP OF THE WEB?. BusinessWeek, 4150: 00077135. If SEO was a simple process then Adwords would not be so desirable and would mean Googles revenue stream would be at risk. In Google Investor relations Financial Tables(no date) Advertising was 97% of Googles $21,795,550,000 overall turnover in 2008. It would be business suicide if Google did not continue to make adjustments and improvements to keep SEO a slight mystery, prompting customers to continue to spend on PPC advertising. One thing not to forget is that visitors assist with rankings, so make sure customers are pointed towards the site at every opportunity.

If you would like to discuss any points further please contact me on 07791 100 639 or Daniel@seasonsbounty.com .

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google References / Bibliography 

D.Viney. Get to the top on Google. London. Nicholas Brealey Publishing. 2008.

H.Jacobson. Adwords for Dummies. Hoboken NJ. Wiley Publishing Inc. 2007.

P.Kent. Search Engine Optimisation for Dummies 3rd Edition. Hoboken NJ. Wiley Publishing Inc. 2008.

C.Anderson.The Longer Long Tail. London. Random House Business Books. 2009.

C.Anderson.Free, The future of radical price. London. Random House Business Books. 2009.

Hof, Robert D., (2009) ‘CAN GOOGLE STAY ON TOP OF THE WEB?’ BusinessWeek, 4150: 00077135. [Online] Available at http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?vid=5&hid=5&sid=2b41349f-8ee2-488e9b540102f901ea96%40sessionmgr4&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db =buh&AN=44430912 [accessed 9 January 2010]

Google(no date) Investor relations - Financial Tables. [Online] Available from: http://investor.google.com/fin_data.html [accessed 8 January 2010]

Webworkshop(no date) What is PageRank. [Online] Available http://www.webworkshop.net/pagerank.html [accessed 8 January 2010]

from:

Sitemaps.org(n date) Sitemaps XML Format . [Online] Available http://www.sitemaps.org/protocol.php [accessed 8 January 2010]

from

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Search Engine Optimisation – Getting on in Google Glossary of Terms Crawl – Search engines send out Robots to look at the code of webpages, this is known as a crawl. Customer journey – Customer comes into the site via the ‘Landing Page’, then navigates through the site via ‘Funnel Pages’ (the minimal amount is recommended) to the ‘Money Page’, where the customer makes a purchase. Once this journey is complete it is known as ‘Goal Completion’. Deep links – Inbound links to own internal page to anchor text. Funnel Page – a bridging page from the ‘Landing Page’ to the ‘Money Page’. Goal Completion – Once a customer has navigated through the site and made a purchase, then the goal is completed. Landing Page – the page that is pointed to from a search result. This needs to contain relevant information so the customer is not disappointed. Long tail – The principle of the long tail is that as there as there are more words in the search phrase there are less companies competing. For example ‘paper’ would be highly competed for, ‘green paper with swirls’ would not be as competed for. Main links – Link to home page. Money Page – where the customer makes a purchase. PPC – Pay Per Click. Adwords is Googles’version of Pay per click advertising. PR – PageRanking. Google ranking system. SEO – Search Engine Optimisation. The steps taken to improve ranking position for a website. Snippet – The title and text displayed when a match is found by a search engine.

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