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Popularity Versus Use Of Keywords


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22 replies to this topic

#1 TheGreatDane

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 04:33 AM

Hi Jill,
and 1.000.001 thanks for a smashing newsletter and now this very exciting forum!! :aloha:

I’ve used your advice (from the newsletters) doing SEO on my site with very good results. As you might have guessed the competition here in Denmark is not as hard as in the States, but still: I’ve moved from “not to be seen” to position 2-8 in the search results, which I find to be very satisfactory. :D

Now to my question:
Searching for one of my keywords on Google (searching danish pages only) my site gets position 2 in the search result. Now, it is not important whether I get position 1 or 2, but here comes the strange part: My site is optimized using the keyword in the copy (9 times within a copy of 227 words), in the meta tag <title>, in the meta tag “Description”, in <h> tags and even in a “home” link. The other site holds one (1) occurence of the keyword within a copy of 266 words. The keyword is NOT present anywhere else what so ever on the page! :zz:

I have even checked (using Lynx) if the other page uses copy between <noframes> tags (which I do), but that is not the case either. So I guess my question boils down to this:
Is it possible, that a page can end up with top position in the search results maybee because of high popularity (many backlinks a.o.) even though the page - judged on keywords - has a very low relevance?

I’m looking forward to hear your opinion (and other members as well) – and once again, thank you very much for the valuable information put out here and in the newsletters! :)

TheGreatDane

#2 compar

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 09:32 AM

Hi GreatDane,

That an interesting question. Could you give us the two URLs involved?

Have you looked at the backlinks for both sites. Does the number 1 site have a large number of backlinks?

#3 Mel

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 09:57 AM

Hard to say Great Dane, without seein the pages, but there could be other differences, like differences in the anchor text of the links to the page that could make the difference in rankings, as could the page title, alt tags on graphics or.......

#4 Jill

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 10:30 AM

Welcome, GreatDane! :aloha:

Yes, it's absolutely possible as you have seen! If there are many backlinks pointing to that page which use the keyword phrase in the hyperlinks, that would cause what you're seeing.

But even without that, you often just see weird results like that which are difficult or impossible to explain. Google isn't always right, unfortunately! And sometimes sites that are less relevant are ranked higher than those that are.

Jill

#5 TheGreatDane

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 11:18 AM

Hi Jill, Mel and compar, :aloha:
and thanks for your response!

I didn't include the Urls, because I didn't know, whether that was acceptable (Jill?)

Anyway here goes:

The keyword in question is: "peptalks" (so even though the sites are in danish, you would be able to recognize the keyword :D )

The urls in question are:
www.sitewise.dk/sw-viden/peptalks.php (my site)

www.thinkheart.com/peptalk.html (other site)

As for the backlinks, I've tried using LinkSurvey, but it gives very different results from time to time, so I'm not sure, how much weight I should give that. Maybe you have other suggestions on how to check for backlinks?

TheGreatDane

#6 Bernard

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Posted 16 August 2003 - 06:18 PM

Whether the keyword is used in the anchor text or not, it is used in the URL for both pages. I would guess that if they have significantly more links than you, this would be the reason.

#7 donaldcroswell

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Posted 17 August 2003 - 05:58 PM

Hi all
I find this odd. Does Google really place more emphasis on the links to your page, rather than the actual content itself? I do see the value in sites that have lots of links to them from external sites using a keyphrase in the link but it seems that would only be a small part of the equasion. Surely a page with 700 words using your keyphrase often (and no backlinks) should rank higher than a page with two graphics and lots of backlinks. Are these equations designed for use with all types of sites? Is that where the system falls over? Where in the list of priorities does CONTENT fall?
Don
:aloha:

#8 Mel

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Posted 17 August 2003 - 10:27 PM

Wish I could answer you questions in detail, but anchor text is an important part of the Google algo. IMO anchor in links from third parties to your site are a reliable indication of what the page is about.

I do not believe that it is an either or thing but a summary of the evaluation of all 100 or so things Google looks at.

#9 bwelford

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 08:17 AM

I have seen cases where a site higher than mine in the SERP's had none of the keywords on the page itself but only in the links pointing to the page.

This used to be confirmed by looking at the cached version of the page after clicking on it from the SERP. The header to the cached page would indicate if the keywords only occurred in links to the web page.

Something seems to have changed now. If you go to the cached version of a page from the SERP and then look at the cached version, you still get a header to the cached version that includes the following sentence:

G o o g l e's cache is the snapshot that we took of the page as we crawled the web.
The page may have changed since that time. Click here for the current page without highlighting.

But surprise, surprise the cached page does not include any highlighting of keywords. Has anyone else spotted this change in the way Google shows cached results? Has this been like this for some time?

Barry Welford

#10 qwerty

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 08:19 AM

I still get highlighting, Barry.

#11 bwelford

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 08:33 AM

qwerty,
We must be doing something differently.

Before, I used to get the highlighting showing automatically when I looked at the cached version of a SERP reference.

Now, if I set the option on the toolbar to open the SERP reference in the same window, then the keywords remain in the Search frame and I can click on Highlighting to highlight the words. But they do not come up automatically.

I had set the option on the toolbar to open the SERP reference in a new window. In this case the keywords are not in the Search frame and I have no way of highlighting the keywords in the cached copy.

Can you see anything you are doing differently?

Barry Welford

#12 qwerty

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 08:40 AM

It sounds like we're using the same settings. I've always had the toolbar set to open results in the same window. I did a search on Jill Whalen and went to the cache of her home page. Here's what I got:

#13 bwelford

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 08:49 AM

Thanks, qwerty. I am absolutely baffled.

I have gone over options carefully and even Reset all Options. I still don't get cached pages coming up with highlighting.

I am using the latest update of the Google Toolbar. Is this the one you are using?

Barry Welford

#14 qwerty

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 09:22 AM

I've been using 2.0 since 2 or 3 weeks after they first released it. Maybe you should try reinstalling it.

#15 compar

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Posted 18 August 2003 - 09:30 AM

I may not understand exactly what you are trying to achieve, but I don't understand why you need to go to the cached copy to highlight the keywords on the page. On my toolbar I have an icon for highlighting. When I click this the page in my browser will be highlighted for every occurrance of the keywords that are in the search box.

Isn't this what you want? Or have I missed something?




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