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Keyword Rich Domains: Do They Still Matter?

Keyword rich domains

Keyword rich domain names have long been a source of debate in the SEO community. Just a few years ago, having the exact match keyword for a search term virtually guaranteed that you’d dominate the rankings. Keyword rich domains fetched incredibly high prices on the domain name market, because people knew they would easily translate into rankings and into money.

 

Then Google clamped down on keyword rich domains. Google (rightly) reasoned that just because someone was able to pick up the exact match domain for a search term did not necessarily mean that they were the best resource. Google devalued the way they looked at keyword rich domains and many of their rankings dropped.

 

Then more recently came the Panda and Penguin updates, both of which heavily clamped down on web spam. Because many of these keyword rich domains used spammy techniques or spammy content to get ranked, a huge number of them dropped right off the front page.

 

So do keyword rich domains still matter? Do they still give you an edge in the search engines, or have they completely lost their effectiveness? The answer is clear: They still matter. A lot.

 

Matt Cutts: “Diminished” But Still Carries Weight

 

Matt Cutts, Google’s head of web spam has already made a public statement about these keyword rich domains. Cutts’ statement basically said that they’ve diminished the power that keyword rich domains have in search engine rankings, but that they still carry some weight.

 

This makes a lot of sense. A lot of legitimate brands use exact match domains. Punishing these brands, which are extremely useful resources, would be counter productive to Google’s mission of trying to bring the best search results.

 

Exact match domains will most likely always carry some extra weight. In Google’s eyes, it’s just slightly diminished.

 

But Wait! There’s More …

 

But that’s not all there is to the story.

 

When people talk about the advantage of exact match domains, they think first of the algorithm edge that the domain has. But that’s not its only advantage.

 

Exact match domains also tend to get higher click through rates. There are two reasons for this.

 

First, people associate exact match domains with trust. If you typed in “eliminate back pain” and saw “eliminatebackpain.com”, there’s a very good chance you’d click on it. It’s not because you recognize a brand, but because your brain automatically assumes the exact match domain is credible.

 

Second, the exact match domain will be bolded in its entirety when someone conducts a search. This makes the listing more eye catching and gets more clickthroughs.

 

Though nobody can tell exactly how much of Google’s ranking algorithm depends on CTR, there’s little debate that it does play a significant role. In other words, if you have an exact match domain, you’re going to get more clicks because of a high CTR. That high CTR can then lead you to higher rankings, which will generate more clicks for you still.

 

This is why the exact match domain and the keyword rich domain are never going to fully die down. Yes, there’s an algorithmic advantage – But there’s also a psychological advantage.

 

“But My Traffic Dropped After Panda / Penguin”

 

What if you were one of the many thousands of webmasters who saw their site drop off the front page after the Panda or Penguin update? Why did this happen to you and what can you do about it?

 

Most likely the reason your ranking dropped wasn’t because of your domain. Instead, you got dropped because you had too many unnatural links coming in or your website appeared to be using the main keyword too many times.

 

The latter is a common problem with exact match domains. Since your domain is the keyword, you’re going to end up saying your keyword a lot of times in your text. That could look unnatural to Google.

 

The answer to this problem is to re-do your linking strategy from scratch. Get more authentic, natural links and re-do the text on your site so it doesn’t look like you’re keyword stuffing. Then either wait for your rankings to improve, or submit a reconsideration request.

 

Keyword rich domains used to be the end all be all in SEO. Today, they’re not as powerful, but they still hold a lot of influence. The power of keyword rich domains has not gone away and likely never will.

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August 10th, 2012 by admin

Get The Pro’s Tips To Writing Good Content

Tips For Good ContentWith so much emphasis now being placed on good content and quality content by search engines, it’s become a catch phrase you see repeatedly across articles and blogs. “Be sure you write good content!  The key is quality content.”  Well, that’s all fine and dandy (and true, by the way), but just what is good content?  Is there some magical formula that automatically makes content have quality like there is with keyword density?

 

Unfortunately, not really.  Good content is just what it sounds like: the most beneficial, quality-driven material that there can possibly be; something that is extremely helpful to the reader and not filled in any way, shape or form with fluff.  So, if there’s no formula, how do you go about writing quality content?  That’s pretty simple and luckily, you’re in right smack in the middle of a quality content article that is going to show you!

 

What Is Good Content?

 

Put quite simply, quality content is a few things all at once, and can be achieved by something I like to call “dipping your pen into the ‘Wells’ of good content”:

 

  • Well-organized and researched material that is displayed in a concise, easy-to-read manner
  • Well-written content that is both engaging and free of spelling and/or grammatical errors
  • Well-documented material that doesn’t make any outstanding or bogus claims without verifying their sources
  • Well-intentioned content, meaning it is aimed at helping the reader find out information they are seeking, not selling them a product.

 

As you can see, there actually is a type of formula you can follow, but it is much more like the formula for writing a good research paper than the formula for making rocket fuel: while just as complex, it isn’t as static. 

 

Quality content means that you have to write individually unique articles, blogs, posts or whatever it is you’re looking to write.  The goal is the same: you want your writing to be found by search engines so it can funnel traffic onto your site.

 

So, how can we make sure that we have quality content? 

 

Tips to Writing Quality Content on Your Website

 

Regardless of what form or medium you are writing for, the keys to writing good content are the same.  Follow these tips and double check them against your ‘Well’ of good content above and you are guaranteed to go right each and every time:

 

  • Be Original: A lot of content writers think its okay to just Google their keywords and rewrite the top articles.  While this may give you a form of good content, it won’t be quality content for a few reasons.  First, the wording will be awkward as you attempt to mix up sentences to avoid plagiarism.  Second, the content won’t be original meaning the Google algorithms will rank your page lower for adding nothing to the table.
  • Do Your Research:  As paradoxical as it is to have this right under the previous tip, it is true that you need to do your research, especially if you don’t know a lot about your topic.  A good method of getting the perfect mix of research and originality into your content is to write up everything you know about the subject, then go and find facts to back up your content.  Chances are you’ll find new information in the process.  When you integrate the two in your website, originality and outside perspective, you’ll find quality content is an automatic.
  • Don’t Hard Sell:  People are bombarded everyday with sales pitches; they don’t need it when they are looking for information online.  Write your content and then at the very end, place a call-to-action.  If you have quality content, the reader will be sure to click on whatever it is you want them to click on.
  • Use LSI Keywords:  Not only is this a great way to get ranked higher, but it also makes your article more interesting if you don’t keep repeating the same words over and over again.

 

More on Quality Content

 

Hopefully, you’re beginning to see exactly what constitutes good content.  You’ll be amazed with how much more traffic you pull into your site with just these few simple tips.

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August 1st, 2012 by admin

Every SEO-Optimized Page Needs These 10 Elements

Search engine optimization can be a big juggling act. There are many things you need to keep in mind. Drop just one ball and your rankings could tumble – Or never appear in the first place.

These are ten of the most important elements to a well optimized page. Get these ten things right and your chances of ranking well are exponentially higher.

Title Tag

Your title tag is the most important tag on your entire website. Google uses it to determine your primary keywords. It’s also the “headline” in your listing in Google, which users use to determine whether or not to click.

Have an attention catching title tag that also contains your main keyword. Make sure you optimize the title tag so that it is different on each page.

Header Tags

Your H1 and H2 tags carry more weight in Google’s eyes than any other text on the page. Make sure your keyword is in your H1 tags and that related keywords or LSI words are sprinkled throughout the H2 tags on your site.

The Page URL

Your page’s URL should have your main keywords in it. It should also be short and should tell people something about the page. For example, “/posted=39048” is not a good URL. On the other hand, “how-to-build-quality-backlinks” is.

Description Tag

Your description tag contains the text that appears below the title tag in your search engine listing. Again, people use this information to decide whether or not to click on your site. This tag won’t actually improve your rankings, but can help improve the number of people who click on your site once they see your listing in the search engines.

Facebook and Twitter

Social media metrics are playing an increasingly large role in SEO. Google takes many factors into consideration. They consider how many fans you have on your page. They consider who shares your content, as well as the authority of the people sharing your content. A share from Bill Gates is weighed much more heavily than the average person.

They can also “read” the content of social media posts about you. If people are complaining about your product rather than praising it, search engines can read that to a certain degree.

If you don’t already have Facebook and Twitter setup, now is the time to do it. It’s not just for social media traffic, it’s also for SEO.

Highly Targeted Web Content 

The quality of your website’s content is becoming a larger and larger factor. While Google bots still can’t “read” a website and independently determine the page’s quality as a human could, they do come close.

The Google Panda update utilizes artificial intelligence as well as hundreds of different metrics, including ads to content ratio, overall design, many linguistic patterns and so on to determine the quality level of your site and content.

Nobody knows what all these metrics are. Instead of trying to game the system, it’s best to focus on providing high quality content that people want to link to.

Multi-Media

Google loves multi-media. If you’re not using images, videos and audio in your website, you’re probably missing out on a large amount of ranking power.

User Generated Content

Having a lot of content generated by your users is one easy way to take the pressure to create content off your shoulders, while giving Google all the more reason to place you higher in the search engines.

If you have a blog, try to cultivate active discussion. If you have a normal website, try to make one section of your site a wiki. If you have a high traffic website, try creating a forum. Try to create as much crawlable user generated content as possible.

Embedded RSS Feeds & News Content

Google loves to see websites that are updated regularly. One easy way to add a constant cycle to your website is to embed an RSS feed.

Keep in mind that this RSS feed should consist of only a small portion of your website. Google doesn’t like sites that use “automated content,” meaning using only feeds to fill a site. Instead, Google likes high quality content sites that supplement their content with feeds from other people’s content.

Diverse Internal Linking Structure

Try to have an internal linking structure that makes it easy for users to navigate from relevant page to relevant page. By linking to relevant pieces of content, you also make it easier for Google to do its job.

There are two main schools of thought in internal linking: Silo structure or flat structure.

A silo structure means separating your site into different keyword categories and interlinking sites only within those categories. This keeps the link juice separated, almost like mini-sites in your website.

The flat structure setup means linking to relevant content across your entire website.

There isn’t a set consensus on which method is better. The key is simply to make sure that you are linking to other relevant pieces of content across your website.

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March 15th, 2012 by admin

Benefits of Video Marketing

Benefits of Video MarketingVideo marketing is one of the hardest hitting, most powerful marketing tactics in today’s fast paced online world. Videos take a lot less effort to consume than reading text, they can be a lot more fun and they can spread like wildfire through the internet.

There are two main ways to use videos: To bring in moore traffic to your website, or to build relationships and credibility with existing vistors.
 

Using Video Marketing to Bring in New TrafficGet More Traffic with Video Marketing

Websites like YouTube, DailyMotion, MetaCafe and many more have millions and millions of visitors visiting them every day. A good video can easily get a few hundred thousand visitors; and a great video can even get several million.

In addition to the “going viral” effect, you can also bring in traffic to your website simply by creating videos that people in your industry want to share.

For example, if you’re in the weight loss industry and you did a top notch video on what scientists say about the top 5 diets in the world, it’ll probably get passed around. It’ll be “shared” on Facebook, “tweeted” on Twitter and reposted on message boards all over the world.

Videos spread, whether it’s through viral marketing or through individual shares.

Using Video to Improve Brands, Relationships and Sales

Use Videos to improve relationships and salesAnother place where videos can come in handy is in communicating with your existing customers. Using a video allows you to convey a lot more than if you were just using text.

Videos where you’re actually on camera talking to the audience can do a lot to build trust. People now actually have a face they can put to the brand. They have someone they can relate to.

When it comes time to make a decision on which product to buy, they’re much more likely to buy from someone who they feel like they know than someone who they’ve only interacted with over text.

Even if you’re only using PowerPoint-style presentations, videos can be very powerful. It allows you to communicate in images, audio, sub-videos and more.

How to Create an Effective Video

The most importCreating an Effective Videoant part of getting good video is to get good audio. If you produce a video where the image is a little fuzzy, it won’t kill the video. However, if the audio is fuzzy and people can’t hear what you’re saying, your whole video goes down the drain.

Invest in a good set of microphones. If you’re appearing on camera, consider investing in wireless mics.
Filming the video can be as easy as creating a PowerPoint presentation or using other presentation software to create the video while you do a voiceover. You can also have someone film you speaking from one or more angles.

The whole production can be done for under $500.

Editing can be done on high end software like Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premier by a professional editor, or using free software like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker. For simple videos, the quality difference won’t be big, though it’ll make a big difference for more complex projects.

Once you’ve filmed and edited the video, the final step is to launch your video with a kickoff. Send it off to your email list, as well as your Twitter feed and Facebook page. If you have a blog, post it on there as well.

Are you using videos in your business yet? If not, now might be a good time to look into it. Video marketing is an exciting way to both bring in new traffic, as well as to build a relationship with your existing fans.

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November 18th, 2011 by zeeshan