I know I covered web page size a few times but I thought a few more things to say. Web page Load times are very important especially for WordPress blogs. Many people are switching to dial up or switching to lower speed broadband to save money. AT&T offers a 750k service for $20 a month now. Even if that were not the case I know everybody has dealt with slow web page load times on their expensive high speed connections. If you have a cable modem you are sharing an Internet connection with your whole street probably. Not to mention many people share an Internet connection in their home. If you live with somebody that plays games and/or downloads movies and music you have seen slow web page load times. Even if Google analytics is showing you 5% dial up users that does not mean you donâ€™t have to worry about slow web page load times.
The problem is that many websites are built on top of some CMS or shopping cart. It may be impossible for some people to make these changes. The advice I give is that if your website is doing well and making you money it is worth the investment to redo the site so that it loads faster. If your just starting out or already invested a lot into a website it may not be worth the extra expense. Slow web page load times will not kill your site I’m just talking about how to make your site better. If your running a business you should always be looking for little ways to squeeze out more profit. I mentioned in a previous post on this subject that Google Maps reduced their page size by 30% and traffic went up 30%. I have also read that you have anywhere from 3 to 5 seconds to convince people to not to hit the back button. If your content does not load very fast you will lose sales.
I have sold a lot of things online over the years and have seen all kinds of scams. I’m writing this post because I just ran into an old scam while trying to sell something on Craigs List.. This most important thing you can do when selling things online is to watch out for red flags. If it is too good to be true it is. The biggest flag is if somebody wants to pay full price and wants fast shipping. If you are selling on a craigslist type of site be very wary of somebody that does not haggle. Bad English is a big red flag as well. Shipping out of the country is also a huge red flag. Copy the first sentence or two of the offer they make to you into Google with quotes around it. This will catch the really stupid scammers.
Here is an email I got today. It has red flags all over it.
Thanks for the prompt response..I fully understand the condition of
what i am buying. I’m ready to buy it now for my personal use but am
not local and due to the nature of my work, phone calls making and
visiting of website are restricted but i squeezed out time to check
this advert and send you an email regarding it.Note that you will not
be responsible for shipping and handling. My shipping company will
come to your location for the pick up. Kindly provide me your name
and full address so i can forward it to the shipping company to
calculate the cost of pick up for me. And concerning the payment, i
will prefer PayPal because i don’t have access to my bank account
online as i don’t have internet banking but i can pay from my PayPal
account because i have my bank account attached to it. I will also
need you to give me your PayPal email address so i can make the
payments immediately and if you don’t have an account with PayPal yet,
it is very easy to set up, go to http://www.paypal.com and get it set
up, after you have set it up i will only need the e-mail address you
use for registration with PayPal so as to deposit the fund. So get
back to me with the following details:
Your Full Name:
The Pick Up Address including Zip Code:
Your PayPal email address for the payment.
Thanks and in anticipation of your response.
Managing projects for multiple clients often requires dependent tasks and strict deadlines. To keep track of the â€śwho does what by whenâ€ť details, it is helpful to have a project management tool to insure you are achieving milestones while not getting stressed out!
SEO Fox needed a solution to manage and organize our projects and tasks in order for us to efficiently fulfill our client obligations. After previous experience with BasecampHQ, Zoho, and Central Desktop (and even demoing a few more), we found a free (donations welcome) hosted project management tool called ClockingIT to help us fulfill our client and sanity needs!
I have found setting up a project in ClockingIT is easy. The interface is intuitive and every userâ€™s dashboard is customizable so users can rename titles and add or subtract widgets to make the dashboard information relevant to the specific user. Admins (configurable) are able to assign projects to clients and task to users and schedule the time allotted to both while seeing a live â€śtimelineâ€ť feed of task completions (there is also a GANNT chart display for the PM nerds in a few of us).
A couple tools I really find helpful are the task timer and the very versatile report feature. The timer allows you to easily clock the time it took to do a task (and it can also be a pop-out window) and document any notes you might want other teammates to be aware of. Using the timer tied with the different reports you can run truly makes calculating project metrics upon project completion easy.
Having a hosted solution (one less thing to worry about) was one of our requirements in a project management solution, but ClockingIT also has a local version for organizations that have a strong network administrator who knows a bit about Ruby. For more information on getting the source code or joining the ClockingIT development community, visit their source wiki and join their github project.
There are all kinds of articles on how to use certain tools to do keyword research. I would like to talk about some other tricks I have used over the years.
Check your junk mail and try to get junk mail from friends and neighbors. Many companies send out fliers with special domain names specifically for mail outs. Donâ€™t forget that URLâ€™s are keywords. I used to make $5000 a month from one kw that I did ppc for. These keywords wonâ€™t last forever so you have to keep finding new ones.
There are a lot of sites that leave their analytics open. You can do certain searches in Google to find these sites. This way you can find out new keywords. Here are some of the searches.
- july referrer usage statistics
- “Top 8 of 8 Total Search Strings”
- Total Search Strings” july
You will find links like http://example.com/.stat/ref_201007.html. What you do is start deleting the sub directories to find the links to every month. http://example.com/.stat/ You can also throw in some base keywords into those searches to find site in your area. The above searches are just something to get you started. You can come up with all kinds of searches to find sites. Look at different analytics packages to find out keywords they use on their reports to find even more.
I was messing around in Google trends yesterday trying to find out how it matched my analytics data. In Raven tools I like to compare this year and last year to see how well Iâ€™m doing. I have it set to only show organic traffic from all search engines. I prefer the Raven interface to GA over Googleâ€™s.
I had two browser windows open going back and forth trying to see the difference. I was thinking it sure would be cool if I could get this Google Trends data in one place. I did some searches and discovered that if you log into your Google account you can download the Google Trends data. I downloaded the CSV from 2009 and 2010 for the main keyword for a client. I copied the data from 2010 to the 2009 spreadsheet. I deleted the percentage cols and the extra stuff on top and bottom. Since I was comparing 2009 to 2010 I deleted the weeks from 2010 that have not happened yet and the corresponding weeks from 2009. This left me with 4 cols. I changed the heading for the numbers to the year plus AD like 2009 AD because excel did not like just a number there.
Iâ€™m not an excel expert. If you really know excel you can really get fancy with this but this worked for my needs and it was fast. Then I click on the insert tab and clicked on Line and picked the first line graph. It made exactly what I wanted.
2007 Excel File
97-2003 Excel File
* Bottom numbers are week numbers so this shows the first 25 weeks of 2009 and 2010.
Yesterday I was on Webmasterradio talking about link building. I was on with Disa Johnson aka airDisa and Daron Babin aka SEguru. We had a great time but there was just not enough time to talk about all the things I wanted to. Below is a list of link building tips that I prepared for the show.
- First step to link building is to make sure all your incoming links go to existing pages or pages that have been redirected to existing pages.
- Get a list of websites that mention you or your product but donâ€™t link to your website and ask them to link to you. You can get this from Majestic SEO or by searching for your domain name or company name or product name in Google.
- Find websites that link to more than one of your competitors. This means somebody is making a list of similar sites and there is a very good chance you can get them to add your site to the list. One tactic to help in this is to offer a coupon code specifically for that site. Donâ€™t just use a unique random code make it a word that reflects the site name or subject. Search Return will let you do this by uploading your backlinks from Yahoo or you can use an export from linkrep.seofox.com or many of the other backlink providers.
- Study your competitorâ€™s backlink profile. This will let you see what types of sites they get links from. It helps to find out what types of sites link to your type of website. It also helps find the type of content people link to. This will give you ideas to create new content that will attract links. You can do this with many of the different backlink tools out there.
Find broken links to your competitors and inform the site owner that the link is broken and ask them to link to you.
- Find sites that link to you with URLâ€™s or junk words like â€śclick hereâ€ť or â€śmore infoâ€ť and contact the site owner to change it to a keyword.
- Find bloggers that have blogged about your competitors and ask them to write a blog about you. Offer them something like a free product, or service.
- Directory submissions still work for long tail keywords. I have run a lot of reports recently and we are seeing top sites with thousands of directory links. The key is getting a good list of directory links.
Quality inbound links are key to achieving great results with organic search.
As SEOs, getting quality incoming links for clients is a time-consuming routine of content creation, web browsing, info submission, and link requests. The question is how to build link popularity efficiently without wasting time.
There are a number of ways to get incoming links, but two that show the most results are creating quality content (linkbait) and requesting links directly from relevant sites. We all know how to create quality content (or buy it). The question is really how to find relevant sites to approach for a link. Advanced keywords searches are a great way to get started. One of the most efficient ways to target potential linkbacks is still competitor backlink analysis.
Competitor backlink analysis is no stranger to SEO; our site owner David Ogletree has made several worthwhile posts about backlink research recently. There are a number of free and modestly priced tools on the market that streamline the link analysis of any website. But a new tool has entered the backlink analysis market that truly aids in streamlining your backlink management.
Link Hound is a great backlink research tool for discovering and managing any backlink endeavor. The process of adding a website campaign and relevant keywords to that campaign is simple. The tool actually suggests numerous websites to analyze based on any keyword phrase entered and determines the links with the most potential to backlink to your site based on the information you give. Link Hound also offers a contact management system within its results page which makes it easy to keep track of links and contacts within the tool instead of exporting that info to Excel. But if you are old-school, you can still export the data to CSV and have fun.
After spending an afternoon using the new tool, it definitely provided relevant potential. Even if you are already using link building software, Link Hound can serve to bolster your reservoir of potential link targets.
Bottom line: Link Hound will help you find relevant backlinks to pursue and help you manage them too.
I have been using a custom proposal generator over the last year and the guy who made it for me decided to make a commercial version. The new proposal generator is called www.phpProposal.com. It works like WordPress. You have to install it on your own server. It is very easy to install. They have a simple script to install on your web server that will tell you if your server is comparable. It works on most LAMP servers. If you have a “linux” web hosting account there is a very good chance this will work on it.
It was originally designed specifically for my needs. The new version is designed for everybody. You can make your own templates and change the wording to whatever you want. It still has built in features for SEO.
Some of the stats for potential clients
- Ranking in Google, Yahoo, and Bing for keywords
- How many .edu, .gov links
- Alexa ranking
It has several pre built proposal templates or you can create one from scratch. It saves your proposals so you can print them out later. I always have to send out proposals and this program makes it real easy.
Some SEOâ€™s have been doing competitor backlink research for a long time some people are just now discovering it and most have never heard of it.
Competitor link research is when you study your competitorâ€™s backlinks as part of your link building efforts. There are quite a few different ways to acquire links using this practice. The possibilities are endless. The best place to find links are places that are already linking.
- When you find pages that link to several of your competitors there is a good chance they will link to you too.
- Get a list of blogs and forums that link to your competitors that don’t have nofollow. Make sure to leave good comments and post good threads. Don’t just say “great site” and spam links with anchor text. It is best to do comments or posts that don’t have links at first. Contribute to the site so they don’t mind your links later. Read the forum rules to find out if you have to make a certain
number of posts before you can use links. Some forums moderate the first 4 or so posts you make.
- Study the types of content websites link to and create that type of content. You can get them to link to your site as well or you can convince them that your content is better than the one they are linking to and they might replace your competitors link with yours.
- When looking through your competitors links you might find that sites link to pages that no longer exist. You can create a page that reflects what was linked to and then inform the site owner of the broken link and let them know they can link to your page instead.
- Get a list of sites that used to link to you or your competitor and try to get a link on those sites. If they used to link they might link again. Find out what the site used to link to and improve the content then show the owner why they should link to it again.
- Find directories that link to your competitors to get your site in.
- Study your own backlinks to find sites that link to you with URL’s or junk anchor text like “click here” or “articles”. Contact them to try to get that changed to a keyword.
- Find wikiâ€™s that link to your competitors and donâ€™t use nofollow . Try to get added to that page or create your own page on that wiki with a link to your site.
- Find run of sites links to your competitors. This might be blogrolls or sometimes paid links. Try to get the link for free. This is not about the right and wrong of buying links just ideas if you want to use them.
While you are doing all this research you might find types of sites that link to your subject area you did not know about. Any time youâ€™re surfing the web you should be looking for new ideas to attract links.
My new backlink reports at SEO Fox can facilitate this type of link building. In the past it took a long time to get a lot of this information. My new service speeds things up so you can get links faster.
I got a call today from a guy claiming to be from Today’s Business Report. He told meâ€ťTodayâ€™s Business Report” is an educational Business television show that is going to air on the FOX business network. I called up and had a long conversation where he leads me to believe that I am being screened to be on the TV show. He asks me all kinds of questions about my business. He finally starts talking about how my company will be featured at the end with a segment. At the end he asks me if I’m ok with a scheduling fee. For a 60 sec spot it costs $5900 to be on their show.
This is basically an infomercial. It is not a real show. They really don’t think you have some great information they just want your money. I did a press release yesterday so I thought somebody at FOX had seen it and wanted to put me on one of their business shows.
Click on image to see un-cropped image
I did a search for “Houston Electrician” earlier in the day without being logged in. Later on I did a search for “Houston Doctor”. This is when I got this result. I’m pretty sure the electricians are not advertising for “Houston Doctor”. I opend IE and logged out of Google and did the same search and did not get those results. I went back to Firefox did the same search and still got the electricians. I then searched for “houston doctor” several times in IE and never got the electricians. I then did a search for “houston electrician” and then did a search for “houston doctor” and got the electrician ads this time.
Google has decided that because I searched for electricians earlier that I should see some more electrician ads. The electrical ads are below number 4 when I type “houston electrician” so I know they don’t have a very high bid. I seriously doubt low end bidder on “Houston electricians” beat out high bidder for “houston doctor”
Looks to me like Google is ripping off some people. How would somebody making a ppc campaign for electricians know to put doctor as a negative keyword.
UPDATE: Barry over at Search Engine Roundtable pointed out that this is an old thing that Google is very open about.