How Does Google Value Links

When you create links, the volume does not necessarily translate to the popularity of your site. You may be able to build links but what does Google thinks of that? Google will not increase the value of your site because of the links that you have included.

In order to win at link building, think like Google. This Internet giant has been implementing a strategy that works best for them. Google is aware that website owners and content developers have been buying links and manipulating them in order to get ahead. Since they know what’s going on under the table, they only put value on the links which are very hard to get. In fact much less value is placed on links that are sourced from link farms, directories, and related resources.

What website owners can do is endeavor to build links gradually and naturally. Diversity & velocity matter the most. Rather than employing numerous links at a very short time, create links from different sites. Google actively determines where the links are coming from. The search engine also analyzes the rate of acquisition of these links.

Let me tell you what I think about which type of SEO links really work. Take for instance social blogging networks, there are so many of these platforms around. What they do perfectly well is to build human networks and facilitate an expansion of one’s friendship circle. There may be a high number of shares, but this does not improve site optimization. Similarly, the site cannot be considered high quality. An impressive social network and hundreds of shares prove that somebody has lots of friends. However, this is not beneficial to SEO.

Google is implementing a multi-angle strategy. I believe that Google modifies the algorithm signal depending upon the niche. Blogging and money making niches are two of the most spam-ridden, and the competition is intense as well. Google probably employs an algorithm with a different signal for these sites.

The following are recommendations that you might want to consider in creating and building your site links:
> Natural backlinks must be earned. It requires hard work but the benefits are immense.
> Google gives higher value to high quality backlinks. Make sure to get only good ones because Google is very particular about these things.
> Focus on who shares your content in social networking platforms rather than the volume of shares.
> Google tends to favor well-known brands. This is a huge disadvantage for small online businesses. Your business should decide whether it wants to buy Adwords to get into Google’s good graces.

Google has redefined its definition of quality content. These days, it is not enough to post a long and unique article filled with relevant keywords. The article has to be useful. It has to illustrate example and provide video clips and infographics that entice people to share the article more.

Website owners have been given more daunting tasks in order to remain relevant in the game. The challenge from Google is to think more deeply and more intensely about content and how to diversify it. If you want to stand out, consider the recommendations that we have presented above.

 

Resource for this article was Lisa at 2 Create a Website

Facebook has once again announced another change.

Before you groan, this is one that is really exciting.

Facebook tells us, “We want to make it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and administer promotions on Facebook, and to align our policies to better meet the needs of marketers.”

You will no longer be required to use a third party app be required to run a Facebook promotion through one of your tabs.

The three big changes are:
• You may now collect entries by having users post on the page or comment/like a page post
• You may collect entries by having users message the page
• You may utilize likes as a voting mechanism

Businesses can now have a contest based upon likes and comments. A good example may be a contest of naming a funny picture caption to win an oil change by a car dealer.

Facebook also warns pages not to abuse the tagging feature.

Facebook noted, as an example, that it’s legal to ask fans to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize, but it’s not legal to ask fans to tag themselves in photos for the chance to win something. Their official policy is:

In order to maintain the accuracy of page content, our pages terms now prohibit pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. So, for instance:

•It’s OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize.
• It’s not OK to ask people to tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize

There are still some rules, and you should become familiar with them before promoting a contest.

Of course, you always have the option to have someone like me take care of it for you. It makes your job easier and is affordable.
If you find this post useful, please pass it along. Other useful information can be found at http://packerlandwebsites.com/BillsBlog/

Off-Site SEO

I am sometimes asked what it takes for a website to be No. 1 on Google’s first page of its SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). More often, you hear the question, “Why am I not ranking No. 1 for the search term I want?” For this discussion, I am going to focus on Google as our search engine.

For starters, unless you are only one of 10 websites that fit a unique search, you won’t be No. 1. The real question is, “How can I get increase my odds of getting there?”

The focus of this story is off-site SEO, since I’ve already covered some of the basics of SEO search engine optimization on my website at http://packerlandwebsites.com/Search_Engine_Optimization.html

Even if you have a good website loaded with good quantities of unique content, there are still additional elements one needs to consider off site.

A person also needs to keep in mind that the broader a search becomes the less likely you are to appear in the SERPs.

Search engines employ secret algorithms of ranking search results. Although content is king, other elements are involved.
Some of these off site elements are:

• Incoming links – Think of an incoming link as a vote of confidence from another website. Some of the referring website’s strength is transferred to you. The more links (votes), the better you will do. Of course, if these links are suspect and black hat links, you could go the other way as well. Remember, these are incoming links. Outgoing links is you voting for someone else.

• Geographical Area – Where you are located in relationship of the search being done. This can be improved my making sure you are listed properly on Google maps and places. This includes not only your information, but your profile, including industry type and links to your website. A verified account will carry much more weight.

• Directory listings – Many of these listings are free and require email verification. Not only do they help to drive traffic to your website organically, they bring in additional outside links.

• Social media listings – These will drive organic traffic, as well as bring additional incoming links.

• You Tube Videos – You Tube videos, if done properly, are searchable on the Internet and appear in the SERP’s, giving additional exposure. They bring in additional organic traffic. They give additional incoming links to your site, if set up correctly.

• Content writing – Unique articles, either on your blog or guest writing, also bring relevance for organic traffic, as well as an opportunity to bring more additional incoming links.

• Paid ad click advertising – Yeah, so this one isn’t free. But the point is, there are a number of options.
Building a website, then simply expecting visitors to come is not always realistic. Often times, websites will rank great depending upon their on-site SEO and quality of unique content. But if you want to be No. 1, chances are you will need to do off-site SEO as well.

Scam Domain Name Renewals

I received a “solicitation that was cleverly disguised as a domain name renewal that gave the impression that my renewal was due. They added other time of the essence language such as,” Failure to complete your Domain name search engine registration by the expiration date may result in cancellation of this offer making it difficult for your customers to locate you on the web.”

They did have my name and address that is on public records and used it to craft an official looking notice. Since they were asking for a faxed renewal it was easy to raise a red flag o this type of scam. Since I was aware that there was 6 month left on my domain name it added more to the ‘not right’ feeling.

Their renewal fee was $75 for a year. That is nearly five times a typical renewal cost.

Maybe my eyes are getting older, but I had to cut, copy paste their disclaimer at the bottom of the email where it states, “By accepting this offer, you agree not to hold DS liable for any part.” And “You are under no obligation to pay the amounts stated unless you accept this offer.”

Normally, I delete these types of emails. But this one got me riled when they gave an opt out address to a website URL that hid their identity and was obviously not who they are. With a little digging and some complaint letters filed, we were able to determine the registrar.

Did they break a law? Probably not. Are what they are doing unethical? I’ll leave it up to you and ICANN to judge.

My larger concern is that someone who does not relize that there are companies out there would fall prey to them.

Always make sure your renewal is coming from the company you registered with. You can often times check with your web delevloper for confirmation. I would always invite and of my clients to question these things and check with me first to confirm.

Do not let these companies make you a victim.

Facebook Hoax: Hover over my name

A new Facebook hoax about staying privately connected is resurrected on Facebook from almost three years ago.

The following hoax post is what is going around.

“With the recent changes in FB, the “public” can now see activities on ANY wall. This happens when our friend hits “like” or “comment” ~ automatically, their friends would see our posts too. Unfortunately, we cannot change this setting by ourselves because Facebook has configured it this way. PLACE your mouse over a name (DO NOT CLICK), a window will appear, now move the mouse on “FRIENDS” (also without clicking), then down to “Settings”, click here and a list will appear. REMOVE the CHECK on “LIFE EVENTS” “STATUS UPDATES” “PHOTOS” and “COMMENTS & LIKES”. By doing this, activity among friends and family will no longer become public.”

This will actually have your friends seeing less of you. If you uncheck “Comments & Likes” for example, your friends will no longer see your comments and likes.

If you want to be a bit more private, go to your privacy settings and make sure to answer the question, “Who can see my stuff?” and set it to friend only. At the same time you can also limit who can look you up.

Privacy is a big issue so it scares a lot of people. Keep in mind that while you feel you are in your living room talking on Facebook that you are also in an auditorium of “friends” that you are talking to at the same time.

If you see someone making this post, you are welcome to drop them a link to this post and help them out.

Happy, safe and hopefully somewhat private Facebook posting!

Do you see anyone missing?

A couple weeks ago we enjoyed some humor at a get together when someone asked, “Do you see anyone missing?” Obviously, that is a bit difficult if taken a bit literal. But, this is what is happening on Facebook.

With Facebook going public and having pressures to increase profits, posts like this one are not put on everyone’s wall. (–Gasp-) Yep, it’s true. So, if you liked a page and think that you will always get their updates, you probably are not over half the time.

The two options are to have the page owner promote (a nice way to say ‘Pay For’) their post or have you revisit the like button and make sure the box is checked to get the feed as seen in the photo.

Of course, those who do not get this post will not know this, so please consider passing it along. It is not only my page, but all fan pages you want to follow.

Let Your Banner Shine

Social media can either get someone excited, remind them that they need to do it for their business or make their eyes glaze over as they zone out. My eyes tend to glaze with excitement since I can see the power of exposure through it.

I will be writing a number of articles about how and why it works. So check back often.

This blog is about Facebook banners. In an earlier post we described the size requirements with a very handy image showing how to create one. A good looking banner needs to capture the visitors attention and draw in their interest. Plus it may be the first impression you make upon someone. So, don’t just throw any image up there.

Think about the Facebook message you want to send in the image and it will get you started. You actually have a decent amount of room to work with and can add multiple pictures and text to the banner. Keep in mind, you cannot have a call to action in the banner image like; click here, like us, call or purchase. You can create a great banner that will make people want to though.

Here are a few examples for inspiration:

     

     

 

So, you now have the tools for the right banner size and examples on how to be a bit more creative in making one.

See what you can do to take your Facebook banner to the next level.

Facebook Banner, Profile and Tab Image Sizes Explained

How large is a Facebook banner image? This should give you a good idea.

Facebook Banner and image sizes

Facebook Banner and image sizes

I have been creating more Facebook banners and images for clients as my own business continues to grow.

One thing I learned is whenever I do something new is to make myself a tutorial. It is written in a format as if I am explaining it to someone else. When I need to use it later, I start out running rather than racking my brains trying to remember what I did before.

Some tutorials are simply graphics like the one above. At a glance it tells you the sizes you need to know.

I have a giver’s gain philosophy. When I give and show off a few tidbits I use in my website business, I hope others will benefit and perhaps keep me in my mind or refer me to someone that I can help.

The image above pretty much speaks for itself. So, this post is more about why I do it. As Facebook continues to evolve, our use of it will also. If this was helpful to you, give a little and pass it along to another.

Are you an Edutainer?

Edutainment
Edutainment is not a misspelling or even a made-up word. You may have figured out already that it is a combination of education and entertainment. This is what most bloggers and many websites should be doing.

Television help to popularize the word as early as 1948 in describing shows that incorporated educational content or messages. You could probably go back a couple thousand years or more and look at the telling of parables.

As relevant as it was back then to engage listeners, it remains even more so today. Through a combination of both educating and entertaining we successfully engage our visitors. This helps to convert them to customers. I call it the three E’s of the Internet marketing.

The next time you perform a search on the Internet or visit a site, pay attention to why you went there. I bet it was not to find a sales pitch or commercial, but to be educated or entertained.

So, what is the bottom line? Become an Internet “Edutainer” and witness the engagement and growth of your blog, social media or website grow.

Email Your Website!

Packerland Websites newsletter

Packerland Websites newsletter

Wouldn’t it be cool to be able to email someone or everyone on your email list your website right to their door? Now you can. By using Constant Contact, you can actually customize your email to look and behave similar to your website.

Ask yourself, why do you have an email campaign? And how do you work it? Obviously it is an information delivery system. It is also a way to brand yourself, gain point-of-mind awareness and direct traffic towards taking action.

The basic way it works is to Entertain, Educate and Engage. They are the three big E’s. If you make something pleasant and enjoyable to read, people will want it. If not, it only takes a couple seconds to select delete or hit the back bar.

By the end of this week, I will email out a sample of exactly what I am talking about. It is a newsletter that mimics my site. I not only has the look and feel, but functions as the website while at the same time presenting itself as a newsletter that is both entertaining and educating.

If you would like to see one first, click the “sign up for our Email Newsletter” and I’ll send you a sample to check out. What do you have to lose and what do you have to gain?