Archive for May, 2006

Use Google Sitemaps to Help With Reinclusion Requests

May 31st, 2006 by WarrenT

A client does not have any of her website’s pages in Google’s index. What to do? It can seem daunting, but the following 4 steps can lead to a satisfactory conclusion.

1. Create an account with Google sitemaps so you can begin the process of asking them why your site is not indexed. The Google sitemaps function will point out problems with the website that prevent Google from spidering the pages:

(http://www.google.com/webmasters/sitemaps/docs/en/about.html)

2. Place a new Google site maps page inside your web directory. It needs to be in the root directory and it needs to be named with an .html extension. When you activate your Google site maps account, part of the process will give you a unique .html page that must be created and placed in your website. There are other methods to verify your website but this is the one I chose for ease of implementation.

3. Point Google to your sitemap.xml page within your website’s root directory after it has been created and uploaded to the root directory of your website.

4. Submit a Reinclusion request of your website at Google’s Reinclusion page:

(http://www.google.com/support/bin/request.py)

These are the bare-bones steps. But Google’s sitemaps page has detailed instructions that will walk you through the process.

This process also anticipates some of the steps Google will want you to take to find out for yourself why your website is not being indexed and what you can do for Google to assist it in finding your pages.

Warren Taylor – Senior Account Executive

Use Google Base to List Items in Google’s Search Engine

May 31st, 2006 by WarrenT

Google Base is a method to list your real estate, products and services in Google. For example, type seattle real estate into the Google search box and the results include an option to refine your search through the use of a drop-down menu. This function appears because people have listed homes for sale in the Google Base.

It is easy to list real estate (or other items) in Google Base and it is free. Simply create a free Google Account if you do not already have one and then go to the Google Base page: http://base.google.com/

When you arrive at that page you need to sign in (the link to do so is above the Post An Item link and also at the top right part of the page).

After you sign in a page displays listing your Active items and places to choose what kind of item you want to post.

In the case of real estate listings you can choose an existing item type: Housing

The next page is a form with fields that you can fill out describing the posted item.

A Title is required. You can also include pictures of your property but that isn’t something that has to be included.

A price is not necessary to post and the Price type offers Fixed price as well as Negotiable and Minimum. There are examples for the fields so you will know what Google Base is looking for. Below the Square footage field there is an additional area with two boxes. Inside the boxes are the words Attribute name. You place additional information in your listing. Examples of the kinds of information you can put in the fields is displayed when you click the Text link below the two boxes. There is a description of the different kinds of Attributes you can use. For example, you can input Author in one box and your business name in the other box. If you use the Location alternative and place the address of the property in your post it will appear in Google Maps. That way if someone searches on your keyword and the refine your search option appears and is clicked, a new page opens with your Google Base entry plus a map showing where the property is located. If you want to use more than one extra field, you can create additional fields through a link that shows up on the page.

After you enter the Location go to the next field. It requests some keywords for the item you are posting. Some of the keywords should be the ones we optimized your web page for, like seattle real estate.

The next field asks for a description. This can be one or two sentences describing the property you are listing.

The final steps to take include previewing your post before you publish it so you can make sure all the information is correct and that it has the right picture you want on display. You can always go back and edit any of the fields or add more fields to your post before you publish it.

This presents yet another way to use Google for your business. It is quick, easy and best of all FREE!

Warren Taylor – Senior Account Executive

Opt-Out of ODP Title on MSN.com with New Meta Tags

May 24th, 2006 by Joe Griffin

Historically the Open Directory Project takes optimized titles and turns them into nothing more than your company name. Since engines like Google and MSN will at times only display your ODP title, this creates a big dissadvantage for your “click-through” rates. MSN has actually released a new tag allowing webmaster to “opt-out” of the DMOZ title for the MSN.com search engine.

Read more here for details.
http://www.webproworld.com/viewtopic.php?t=63851

Matt Cutts discusses the Indexing Timeline

May 18th, 2006 by WarrenT

Here’s a recent post on Matt Cutts blog about how BigDaddy indexes website pages:

http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/indexing-timeline/

Interesting read. A summary is offered and discussed in Jill Whalen’s forum:

http://www.highrankings.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=22570

Seven Offline Viral Marketing Ideas

May 17th, 2006 by Brian H

Article discusses how to promote your site offline for additional traffic:
http://www.sitepronews.com/archives/2006/may/17prt.html

Summary:
Use your URL like your phone number.
Webcards.
Make every customer contact a viral marketing opportunity.
Referral Bribes.
Tchochkes.
Direct Mail.
The World as Your Billboard.

Always, always, always have business cards, web cards, brochures, tchochkes or some viral marketing medium on you.

SEO With Google Sitemaps

May 15th, 2006 by Brian H

Details how to use Google Sitemaps as an SEO Tool
http://www.sitepronews.com/archives/2006/may/15prt.html

Yahoo Real Estate

May 15th, 2006 by Brian H

Details about partnership between Prudential and Yahoo Real Estate.
http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/blog/060511-122047

Google Press Day

May 15th, 2006 by Brian H

Includes the powerpoint presentation screenshots and a link to the Webcast:http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/blog/060510-123802

Search engine friendly H1’s and other headlines

May 11th, 2006 by Adam Edmondson

The use of the headline (H1, H2, H3, etc.) tag in your website’s HTML coding is a beneficial optimization technique. A headline tag, when used with keyword phrases, adds emphasis to those keywords in the eyes of a search engine. Every little bit of emphasis we can place on our target keyword phrases can help in the overall optimization puzzle.

Making a headline look like the rest of your site while keeping it search engine friendly can be tricky. Most HTML editors like Frontpage and Dreamweaver will, by most defaults, try to style your headlines with FONT tags. FONT tag control of a headline is not search engine friendly, and actually overrides the power of the headline in regards to optimization. But, with a little bit of CSS (cascading style sheets) knowledge, we can make our headlines appear in any font color, face or size that we want, but remain visible as a standard headline to the search engines.

Here is an example of a standard H1 tag used on the word “Hello”:

Hello

The HTML would look like this:


Hello

It’s big and ugly. But, this is how we want the search engines to see it. So now we need to style it for our visitors. Let’s say that your site has a blue theme, uses Verdana font, and uses small font sizes (8pt or smaller). This headline would not match your site at all. Let’s try to code it to look like this:

Hello

This is our same H1 tag, but with the color blue, the font face Verdana, bolded, and a font size of 8pt. Ok, there are three ways to do this with CSS formatting:

  1. Include CSS styling to all headlines (H1, H2, etc.) directly in a stylesheet if you are already using one. Check your HEAD tags for the call to a file that ends in the “.css” extension.
  2. Include the CSS styling to all headlines directly in the HEAD area without using a stylesheet.
  3. Include the CSS style property directly to the headline tag itself.

Option 1:

In your pre-existing stylesheet, add this snip of code:

H1 {
font-weight: bold
color: #0000FF;
font-family: Verdana, sans-serif;
font-size: 8pt;
}

Change your properties for each variable as you desire. You can use this technique for H1’s, H2’s etc.

Option 2:

If you do not use an external stylesheet, but would rather add the style properties directly to your HEAD tags area, add this snip of code anywhere in the HEAD:


Change your properties for each variable as you desire. You can use this technique for H1’s, H2’s etc.

Option 3:

Use the following inline code right in your headline tag:


Hello

Change your properties for each variable as you desire. You can use this technique for H1’s, H2’s etc.

What you absolutely never want to see is a headline tag surrounded by FONT tags. Make sure that your headlines are free from any other external formatting in your site. You now have search engine friendly headline tags.

Pitfalls of Mass Article Distribution

May 10th, 2006 by Brian H

This discusses putting emphasis on a quality article submitted to specific quality sites rather than submitting a ’so-so’ article to 1000’s of sites:
http://www.site-reference.com/articles/Internet-Marketing/The-Misunderstood-Marketing-Method.html

Overview:

You won’t be able to write a great article in a day. Research will be required. Take the time to make an an article of journalistic quality.

Don’t advertise your website in the article. What is missing is you could place a small blurb about yourself at the bottom which includes your website address.

Only submit to quality online publications. Articles in these publications get linked to. If the publication doesn’t like the article, ask what they do like.