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SEO Website Audit

High Rankings Advisor: Google's Secret - Issue No. 111

September 1, 2004
~~~IN TODAY'S ADVISOR~~~

*Introductory Comments:
---->   Confirm Subscription

*Search Engine Marketing:
---->   Optimize for How Many Keywords?

*This Week's Sponsors:
---->   SmartSearch Marketing
---->   New HitsLink ver. 3.0
---->   High Rankings Seminar and Workshops

*Guest Article:
---->   Google's Secret

*Stuff You Might Like:
---->   Search Engine Marketing Book

*High Rankings Forum Thread of the Week:
---->   CSS and Accessibility

*This Week's Sound Advice:
---->   Optimizing a Framed Site for High Rankings

*Advisor Wrap-up:
---->   Where's Corie?
________________________________________________________

~~~Introductory Comments~~~

Hey all! I'm running a bit late today, so just a quickie reminder for
whoever hasn't confirmed their email addresses on my upgraded list.  I
don't want to lose you as a subscriber, so if you didn't receive your
confirmation email you can have it resent by going here:
</subscribe.htm>.

[Please note that I've inserted this message to all those who are on
the *old* list. So please check your settings through the subscribe
page, asap. If you reconfirmed earlier today, you should be okay.]

Also, our 2-day seminar is only a few weeks away, so be sure to
reserve your spot as soon as possible -- we're filling up fast!

Okay, on to the good stuff! - Jill


~~~Search Engine Marketing Issues~~~

++Optimize for How Many Keywords?++

Hi Jill,

From your own personal experience, what do you think of the
following...

When you work on a site that sells a certain product, say baby
products, it can't be in the top 10 for all the top keywords related
to the industry, as competition is fierce.  Plus it takes time doing
link exchanges with anchor text for your keywords, etc. In these cases
I usually would take maybe 3 of the product pages like:

baby cribs
baby strollers
baby bedding

...and focus on getting those 3 product pages ranked highly for the
related keyword phrases.

Is that what you would do?  Like when you build a site do you think of
each page as a page you could potentially get in the top 10 but
realize that you might only get 3 of your product pages in the top 10
and only manage to maintain them?

Maybe a better way of putting it would be, do you think for every site
you create you should aim to have that site ranked highly for about
4-5 keyword phrases?

Thanks,

Jon M.

++Jill's Response++

Hi Jon,

I'm not quite sure I follow your logic.  My question to you would be,
why shoot for only 4 or 5 keyword phrases when you can shoot for
hundreds?  Perhaps you're thinking that you can have only your home
page show up in the engines?  If that were true, then I'd agree that
you should optimize for only 4 or 5 phrases.

Luckily, you can theoretically have every page of your site listed in
the search engines, so there's no reason to limit the number of
phrases you optimize for.  If you're worried because you have a
dynamically generated site and you think the search engines don't like
those, there's no need to worry about that either.  These days most
dynamic sites can be spidered just fine (aside from some special
circumstances) if you are careful with your programming.  (See my
interview with Alan Perkins on this topic:
</issue065.htm#seo>.)

So let's see how we would approach a baby products site like you
mentioned.

First, we'd want to categorize the different products so that we had a
limited number of main topics.  For instance, baby toys, baby
furniture, baby clothes, etc.  Then we'd want to create a page on the
Website for each category.  We'd do some keyword research at
Wordtracker </wordtracker> and focus on
keyword phrases that described the main category elements within the
copy on these pages.

For instance, on the main baby-toys page we'd research the phrases
people use when searching for baby toys at the engines.  We wouldn't
worry too much about the individual toy products at this time, but
we'd probably want to know at least which toys or types of toys were
the most popular, as we'd want to target them on this main category
page also.

Once each category page was completed (and we'd create as many as were
necessary to get the job done), we would then concentrate on breaking
things down further into more specialized categories or individual
product pages.  Some products might deserve their own pages, and some
could probably be grouped together with others.

The hard work would be writing the keyword-rich marketing copy for all
the pages.  We'd want our baby-products site to not simply use the
standard manufacturer's text that everyone else uses because then our
pages wouldn't have as much of a shot at showing up in the engines.
Instead of simply listing our various products, we'd have to make sure
that everyone who came to our site knew why we were different from the
other sites.  Why our service or prices or whatever was far above the
rest, and not only that, but how all that would make it worth the
shopper's time and effort to buy from us.

When the copy was taken care of, we'd go back and figure out ways to
generate Title tags and Meta description tags that were unique to each
page.  The beauty of a dynamic site is that you can create a few
different template Title tags for various levels of the site, and have
the system insert the important keyword phrases as necessary.

That would nearly cover our on-the-page optimization.  We'd of course
need to work out an ongoing link-building plan, but for such a
comprehensive site, it shouldn't be too hard to create a strategy
where we were adding a good 20-50 links per month once we got in the
groove.  I imagine that there are tons of kid-friendly businesses that
might like to offer their own visitors a special deal on baby
products.  (Think schools, daycare centers, OB-GYNs, etc.)

When all is said and done, every page of the site should be a gateway
to the rest of it.  This is the best way to convert those
window-shopping visitors into customers.  If someone is searching for
"Tickle Me Elmo" and you sell it, you want your Elmo page to show up.
(Okay, so that probably hasn't been a hot toy in many years, but I
don't know what's in and what's out in baby toys these days!)

I hope this has convinced you to reach for the stars with your SEO
campaign.  There's just no reason to think in terms of only a few
keyword phrases when you have an entire universe of phrases to work
with!

Jill


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__________________________________________________


~~~Guest Article~~~

++Google's Secret++

Catherine Parker from Quirk in South Africa is back with us today, to
let us in on Google's secret! You may remember Catherine from her
previous High Rankings guest article, "Folders vs. Subdomains"
</issue105.htm#guest>.

Welcome back, Catherine! - Jill

Google's Secret
By Catherine Parker

I've got a piece of ground-shaking news about Google that trumps even
knowing their algorithm. It's so classified even GoogleGuy doesn't
know it. It hasn't even been made known on any forum or SEO news site,
let alone Google's Webmaster Guidelines. So what do I know that
everyone else doesn't?

Google is a female.

It's true. All the signs are there.

For starters, she's smart and capable. She has a pleasing exterior,
and she can multitask (what with all those millions of searches
conducted daily). On top of that, she can raise a family too! Just
look at all those kids she feeds: AOL Search, Netscape, Lycos,
Hotbot...

She tends to get a bit emotional and slightly tempestuous every now
and then. After each update, webmasters reel over Ms. Google's latest
tantrum. Today, Google is showing a whole different set of backward
links that weren't there yesterday, and many are from pages with a
PageRank lower than 4!  Webmasters who have optimised their site using
one criterion do not know whether they're coming or going. "What is
going on with this latest update?" they scream. "This wasn't in the
guidelines! This doesn't make any sense!" they rant. Well, neither
does the link: command, but she didn't tell you that either.

Google has her reasons. And because she's top-of-the-pile of search
engines, she can pretty much do what she likes. She's also allowed to
change her mind on a regular basis about the things she likes in a
website. First it was the Meta description and keyword tags. Then it
was the alt tags. Then it was reciprocal links.  These days, she's a
fan of one-way inbound links.

And of course, there's nothing like a woman scorned. All you have to
do to see evidence of this is to talk to the guys over at a certain
high-profile search engine marketing company or their poor
unsuspecting clients. This company (and its clients) has recently been
kicked off Google for using spammy doorway pages to cheat the
algorithm. Because of their spam tactics, they've been punished, and I
suspect it will take a very long time for them or their clients to get
listed again, let alone climb the rankings.

But underneath all the tantrums and apparent irrational behaviour sits
a young lady who's yearning for something quite simple. All she's
really looking for is a stable, long-term relationship with a nice
guy. That of course would be a useful, relevant website with loads of
scintillating, informative copy and some great inbound links. (This
would of course assume that websites are males, but that's another
story altogether.)

So you want to be liked by your favourite lady? Then don't be a
player. Don't use underhanded tactics and try to spam the search
engines to climb the rankings. And don't cheat on her by setting up
link farms and running around with every bad guy on the block. Be
nice, and be decent. Give her what she's looking for in a long-term
relationship -- a stable, meaningful site with a lot beneath the
surface and someone who's in it for the long haul and for the right
reasons. Because when Google smiles on your site, the rest of your
target market will smile too! And of course, you'll have one smart
girlfriend.

Catherine Parker
Quirk: One-2-One eMarketing
http://www.quirk.co.za/


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__________________________________________________


~~~Stuff You Might Like~~~

++Search Engine Marketing Book++

Just wanted to let you know that my good buddy Mike Grehan has updated
the second edition of his Search Engine Marketing Book which I
reviewed back in issue #018
</issue018.htm#stuff>.

Not only has the book been updated, but it's also on sale!  If you
haven't purchased it yet, you can now buy it for only $67 US (down
from $99).

Mike tells me that he's updated the information about the search
engines, as well as added some interviews.  He is also working on a
completely new 3rd edition, scheduled to be published in a few months.
The good news is that if you purchase this updated 2nd edition, you
will receive a courtesy upgrade to the 3rd edition when it's out!

You can learn more and purchase it here:
</searchenginereport>


~~~High Rankings Forum Thread of the Week~~~

++CSS and Accessibility++

Forum member "linux_lover" asks, "How does everyone code for
accessibility?"  Little did he know he'd start such a heated debate!

Read the thread and share your comments here:
</forum/index.php?showtopic=8765>


__________________________________________________

High Rankings Seminar and Workshops - Sept. 23 & 24
__________________________________________________

Don't miss out.  Meet Jill and the gang in Boston!

Learn search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, SEO
copywriting, link popularity, usability and how to measure the success
of your search marketing campaigns.

Reserve your seat now! </111seminar>

Meet us for dinner on Thursday the 23rd -- open to all!
__________________________________________________


~~~Sound Advice~~~

++Optimizing a Framed Site for High Rankings++

</soundadvice>
(This audio recording changes each week.)


~~~Advisor Wrap-up~~~

I mentioned at the beginning that I was running a bit late today.
That's because I had to go with my oldest daughter, Corie, to have her
senior pictures taken.  She promised me that in return she would write
my Advisor wrap-up...but do you see her here?  Nope.  She mumbled
something about homework or shopping or the phone or something and
then disappeared.  Of all the nerve.

Anyway, I got to see the photos on the monitor as they were taking
them, and they are gonna look great!  Corie is so photogenic...she
could really be a model.  I'll sneak some photos online when she's not
looking so you can see what I mean.  Actually, her prom pics are
online somewhere...but I better not post that link here...she'd kill
me...but still...she did say she'd write this wrap-up...so it's only
fair...hmmm.  I better not.  Who says I'm mean?  :-)

Catch you next week! - Jill

 
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