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Content IS king after all !!

content makes you kingImagine you make a search with your favorite search engine about "keyword phrase 1" and you visit the first result (1st URL) but you return immediately to the search results - using search engine terms you bounce back. You now click on the 2nd URL and you never return to the search results. Lets say the same exact thing happens with 1000 other users searching for "keyword phrase 1";   What should that search engine conclude ? The 2nd URL is more fit to be on the 1st position for "keyword phrase 1". The 1st URL might not even be fit in for displaying in the first page of the search results of that search !!

9 free webmaster tools I can't live without

Webmasters and developers don't need a whole lot of money to spend on tools in order to work efficiently and be productive. Here is a list of free tools that help me run my everyday webmaster chores.

Notepad++

Notepad++Dreamweaver and such designing tools might have become very advanced in the recent years but I am still far from satisfied with them. I prefer to do the coding with a simple text editor and be in total control of the code and not end up with unnecessarily long code. Recently I discovered Notepad++ which has the few bells and whistles that are desired by hard core programmers such as code highlighting, Regular Expression Search/Replace support, capability to extend functionality with plugins and nice depository of contributed ones. Worth your attention.

Where do link exchanges fit in your link building campaign?

Giorgos' recent post on link exchanges using LinkEx generated a few questions about the value of link exchanges. I thought it might be interesting to revisit some signs of quality links and then discuss where link exchanges might make sense when acquiring links.

Let me first say link exchanges are far from my preferred source of links. Google has made it pretty clear they don't care for these kind of changes and while that doesn't mean all link exchanges are bad, mass reciprocal linking is generally frowned upon as a useful seo tactic. I've never engaged in link exchange networks and have no plans on doing so in the near future. Still there can be times when it makes sense to reciprocate a link and there can be times when a direct trade of links is perfectly natural. Think trackbacks for an example of a natural reciprocal link.

Link exchanges the easy way

LinkEx - Link exchange scriptLink exchanges are time consuming. If you have done few you know what I mean. The trouble is not with arranging them and placing them; you need to maintain them as well. You need to check once in a while to see if the link partners are linking back to you and act accordingly. It gets even more time consuming if the link exchanges are 3 way in which case you have to check a third domain that has your link included. Its hard to keep track of all these, and it gets even harder the more link exchanges that you arrange.

What matters for google rankings (SERPs)

google webmaster toolsEvery webmaster (at least that I know of) wants to know how the search engines see and evaluate their websites ... especially how Google sees them. Google webmaster tools was created with this concern in mind.

Anyone who has used them knows how important tools those are; You can see information Google collects about your websites, see what matters for their index and it includes also tools that you can use to help Google "see" (crawl) your sites easier.

The tools were recently updated (1 1/2 month ago I realized the changes) and they contain even more useful stuff for anyone that owns a site ... I am going to give a brief description of the most important things one can find when visiting the tools ...

CSS post it notes

css post it notesYellow post it notes are cool and a really good way to get someone's attention, don't you think ? I had in my disposal the transparent png solution for IE using CSS so all I needed was a cool graphic and a way to position it anywhere on a page using just CSS.

The advantages of this implementation are:

  • you don't need javascipt
  • you can position it anywhere on a page by changing a few css parameters
  • any PNG-24 graphic will do, no need to think about what colors will be behind it on the page

You can take a look at the complete css post it note example and come back for the details:

Free link building techniques

link_buildingIts no secret that backlinks (links pointing to your domain) are very important factor on how google ranks your website in their search results. Most other search engines also value the links to your site also ...

Here is some free techniques you can employ to help you build links to your site, traffic will be a consequence as well. You don't have to follow them in any particular order but, the more of these that you accomplish the better job you will have done ...

  • Write or post something people would want to link to (actually called link baiting).
  • Create a resource, something that people would find valuable and will easily point their friends to
    Example: directorycritic is one of the best places to find free and paid directories; people know that and recommended it boldly, sometimes they even link to it.

Considerations for Yahoo optimization

Yahoo is the second most important search engine and if you ask anyone in China, Yahoo is the #2 search engine only behind Baidu, and in that country Yahoo is very well represented and has great partners (like Alibaba.com) that keep them in the mindshare of Chinese internet users. Yahoo has about 14% of the UK market and I believe 25-30% of the US market. Its traffic is not to be ignored.

I have my own theory about Yahoo. Yahoo as a search engine is more focused on the business field than on the information field. Yahoo has concentrated their efforts on online stores, real estate, car sales and other business related companies. I looks like their algorithm is optimized in a way to answer queries related with online business, while Google has optimized their algorithm for information in general, since Google’s algorithm works better in that field than Yahoo’s algorithm.

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