Archive for September, 2011

Google Slips, Bing Up : A sign of things to come?

Compete.com has released US search engine market share statistics. The figures reveal what has been observed over recent months. Bing is slowlybut surely chipping away at Google’s market share.

According to Compete’s research, Google-powered search (which includes both Google and AOL) had 68.3% of the US market in August, down from 69% in July. Bing-powered search — Bing and Yahoo combined — held 31.7% of the market in August, up from 31% in July.

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Web Browser Market Share for September, 2011

Web Browser Market Share: September, 2011 Update

Web Browser Market Share: September, 2011 Update

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Is Your SEO Campaign Built Around Algorithm Chasing?

Chasing Google?

Chasing Google?

Almost every online business nowadays has a SEO campaign with various rates of success. The success of any SEO campaign is largely determined by the targeted traffic it is able to deliver to the website. Traffic is increased by researching for the most relevant and popular keywords. Once the keywords have been selected, a website is optimized and a link building campaign is initiated. Hopefully, if dome correctly and consistently, all these activities result in a website rankings for all or many of its selected keywords.

But over the last few years, SEO has evolved. It is no longer about delivering traffic to a website but also encompasses analytics.

Usually, a SEO company will do the needful and deliver the traffic. If and when a search engine updates its algorithm, the campaign is tweaked accordingly. This becomes a never ending cycle where the bulk of efforts are spent on chasing algorithms. Rather than building a website according to your initial goals, the focus of an algorithm chasing SEO consultant is now what a site should be as dictated by the latest algorithm update.

With every algorithm, SEO consultant will be frantically making changes to the site’s SEO campaign but by the time SEO consultant is done with them next update m ay be around the corner.

Also, algorithm chasing means overwhelming attention on just one search engine at the cost of other search engines. This means putting all your eggs in one basket which is not a wise decision when you business depends overwhelmingly on your online presence.

Chasing algorithm means creating a one size fits all solution which takes in to account various signals which can affect the SEO of a site. But as we know such solutions don’t work across industries and niche. Such an approach can be a perfect recipe for disaster if followed to a T.

Chasing analytics is a better technique than chasing algorithms because it forces you to concentrate on much better and tangible statistics which make more sense.

Analytics involves focusing on your audience and serving them with best way possible. This is how search engines actually want the sites to perform in the first place. This also saves SEO consultant from always figuring how to game search engines or how to get off the penalty imposed during last update.

But analytics is only successful if you have considerable traffic. Without any traffic even the best designed and most UX friendly site may fail.

To get the best of any SEO campaign, a SEO consult should marry analytics with their SEO campaigns if possible. A traffic may not necessarily be converted in to sales and it’s here the power of analytics can be unleashed. Analytics can unearth user behavior and trend which can help a site convert visitors in to customers.

This will mean a much more successful website which doesn’t need to be tweaked with every algorithm update.

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Young US Adults are Heavy Texters

A recent study has found that young American adults are heavy users of text messages. The findings have revealed that Cell owners between the ages of 18 and 24 exchange an average of 109.5 messages on a normal day.

The other significant findings were:

1) About 83% of American adults have a cell phone.

2) 73% of these cell phone owners send or receive text messages.

3) 31% users said they preferred texts over talking on the phone

4) A majority – 53% – preferred a voice call to a text message

5) Text messaging users send or receive an average of 41.5 text messages on a typical day.

 

These results come from a nationally representative phone survey of 2,277 adults ages 18 and older conducted from April 26-May 22, 2011, including 755 cell phone interviews. The margin of error for the whole survey is +/-2.3 percentage points, while the margin of error for cell phone users is +/-2.7 percentage points.

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Top 5 Reasons Why Your SEO Campaign Failed

Top 5 Reasons Why Your SEO Campaign Failed

Top 5 Reasons Why Your SEO Campaign Failed

SEO is thought of as a panacea which can cure low business and make site suddenly popular and successful. What is often ignored is the fact that a good SEO campaign will get your traffic. What a site is able to do with that traffic is outside the scope of SEO. If the SEO is getting you inbound traffic but you still fail to see any increase in your sales then your problems may lie somewhere else.

1) Website design: The first thing a site visitor encounters is the website design. There are numerous ways, one can scare away the potential customer. A site with old design signals that the company is out of sync with modern innovations. Old fashion sites score very poorly on credibility.

Slow loading sites also turn off visitors. No one has the time to wait for your site to load when there are hundreds of sites which are prompt to load on screen and eager to serve their clients.

A website with poor navigation and structure may also witness low sales activity. A client will not be able to find the information, services or products easily which may force the potential client to seek it on some other site.

2) Page content: A website’s page is the sales letter which convinces the buyer to buy your services or products. If the content is ridden with grammatical mistakes, inconsistencies and fails to attract the site visitors then traffic will not get converted to sales.

3) Errors: A website with broken links, blank pages, non-working contact forms and broken images send out very poor signals. A website has few seconds to establish trust and rapport. A website with such errors will stop visitor on his track and leave your site immediately.

4) Social Media: Social media is the most effective way to build trust. A company with no social media presence may look like fly by night operator. Social networking enables customers to send you feedback and establish your reputation.

5) Call for action: Many times websites do not have a strong call of action buttons or options to call. This leads to lost sales opportunities.

A SEO company should be able to analyze and determine which  factors are hampering the effectiveness of their SEO campaign and  suggest appropriate measures.

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5 FAQs about Link Building

Backlinks is the spine of any SEO campaign. No other aspect of SEO is as much mired in mystery as link building. Today, we will answer some questions regarding back links and link building.

1) Is there any 1 best link building method: The answer to that will vary depending on who is answering the question. For many article submissions have worked wonders, for others blog comments and still others may prefer link buying.

The best way to go about acquiring backlinks is to have a mix of various sources. If all of your backlinks are of same type then your site may suffer in case these kinds of links are downgraded in some future search engine algorithm update. Your basket of links should have links from all possible sources such as articles directories, web directories, social networking sites, blogs, and social bookmarking sites etc.

2) Do we need to acquire only high PR backlinks: High PR backlinks are preferable as they give maximum benefit. But, you should mix up your backlinks in this case also. Make sure that backlinks come from sites with same or similar themes and should not totally unrelated.

3) Do nofollow backlinks pass any juice? Though Google and other major search engines do not pass on any PR juice, nofollow links from quality websites may translate in to higher traffic and visibility.

4) How many links should I have to get first page spot: There is not defined number of links needed to get a position in first page of search results. Your position depends on other websites as much as it depends on your efforts.

5) Can I have good rankings without any backlinks? Yes, maybe 5 years back for some very low competition keywords. But no longer the case now with so many businesses with online presence.

A SEO company India needs to plan a SEO campaign which has a judicious mix of traditional as well as out of the box link building techniques for maximum results for your efforts.

 

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How To Add Your News Site To Yahoo News

How To Add Your News Site To Yahoo News

How To Add Your News Site To Yahoo News

If you have a news site, then you would like to maximize its reach as much as possible. Apart from usual SEO practices, submitting your site to Yahoo News is a good way to get more visibility and free traffic.

If your site is included in Yahoo News, then content from your news site will be added to Yahoo! News search results.

Submitting to Yahoo News is a simple procedure involving a News Source Submission Form, which asks for rudimentary information about your and your website.

Once you submit the form, Yahoo! News Editorial Team will get all the necessary information they need to review your submission suggestion.

Your website or blog will then be considered for addition to the Yahoo index. The decision is based on quality and editorial guidelines.

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Bing tips on effective SEO

Bing tips on effective SEO

Bing tips on effective SEO

Since its inception, SEO has always been mired in controversies, lies and obfuscation by many parties with vested interests. So any news related to SEO coming form the horse’s mouth (Google/Bing) shed light on many aspects of SEO and makes life easier and less confusing for webmaster and SEO consultants alike. Bing also posted 18 things you need to know about SEO for our benefit. Here is the list

1) Crawlability: Make sure your site is accessible to search engines or else your site won’t be ranked. As simple as that! A no brainer but still many webmasters flunk on this first point. Use XML sitemaps and search friendly URL structure.

2) Site Structure: Your site should be functional with both inbound links and outbound links from and to quality sites with good content.

3) Content Hierarchy: Create content which users are searching for. Keyword research can help you find that out. Avoid putting content and links inside rich media applications like Flash & Silverlight or images since search engines can’t read the content embedded in them.

4) On-Page Factors: Effective use of Title, meta description tags. Include keywords in them. Apart from this, rather than wasting too much time on various minor points, try creating great content.

5) Content Production: Create great content which satisfy users search. Thin content approach won’t benefit you and get you in to trouble.

6) Link building: Use keywords as anchor text to increase the relevancy of the link. Use social networking icons to increase sharing. Stay away from paid link services.

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Chromebooks now to have offline access

Chromebooks have often been criticized for not having offline access. This is a serious limitation in situations with no access to internet. One cannot use anything on Chromebook with no internet connectivity. Faced with the criticism, Google has introduced Gmail Offline app on Chrome Web Store. Offline for Google Calendar and Google Docs will be rolling out over the next week.

Here is an excerpt from the Google’s blog

Gmail Offline is a Chrome Web Store app that’s intended for situations when you need to read, respond to, organize and archive email without an internet connection. This HTML5-powered app is based on the Gmail web app for tablets, which was built to function with or without web access. After you install the Gmail Offline app from the Chrome Web Store, you can continue using Gmail when you lose your connection by clicking the Gmail Offline icon on Chrome’s “new tab” page.

Such measures will surely increase the popularity of Chromebook and it concept.

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