We SEOs like our tools. Each one is instrumental in uncovering aspects of a site we might not have thought about or trawl information that would take years to do manually. One of the best tools, however, is often underutilised: Google itself. Google has the advantage of not only being free but storing exactly which of your site’s URLs (and competitors) are indexed. With a little persuasion, SERPs reveal all of their knowledge to execute tasks such as competitor research, content analysis and technical auditing. In this article, I’ll be focusing on the latter, giving examples so you can see them in action and use to eliminate those issues. Basic Search Operators Before we consider specific usage cases, it is important to look at the basic commands and how they can refine the SERPs. These search operators can all be combined to dig deep into Google’s index. 1.Quotation marks search operator By surrounding your search query in quotation marks, you are telling Google you … [Read more...] about How to use google advanced search operators
Use google to search a site
If you have an old, established site, chances are you’ve done something in the last few years that is no longer effective or, potentially, detrimental to your SEO. It might be anything from a too-high keyword density, too much focus on links from poor sources, unfortunate uses of code that has accrued a penalty, duplicate content; the sky is the limit.The typical advice is to make the changes necessary to comply with modern Google standards. That’s all well and good, but once you’ve made the changes, you still don’t see their effects. You run a few experimental searches and, sure enough, Google still has your removed pages indexed and your old content cached. How long does it take for your changes to propagate through the index and you can be free of their shadow?Reindex TimingUnfortunately, there’s no one clear answer to this question. When you make changes to your site, you’re at the mercy of the Google crawlers to discover those changes and make … [Read more...] about How Long Does It Take for Google to Reindex a Site?
Building links to your site improves rankings in certain search engines. Not all of the search engines put as much weight on inbound links, but one that does is Google. Google has become the 800 pound gorilla in the search engine wars, seemingly overnight. Did you know you can use Google to identify the sites you need to have links from? My friend and Web developer Stephan Spencer (http://www.netconcepts.com) helped put together this overview/tutorial for how to use Google to evaluate link targets for your site. Not all links are created equal, and Google knows this. They know that FFA links are useless, as are link farm links. They help you clog your own inbox and that's all. In Google's case, the sheer number of links doesn't determine your ranking. Google's ranking algorithm takes into account each link's importance along with other factors like the proximity of your search keywords in the documents. In other words, it's not just about the number of sites that … [Read more...] about Using Google to Identify High Quality Link Targets
The popular Firefox browser is on track to use a secure method of searching Google by default, a change that will help prevent potential “eavesdropping” of what people are searching for. It will also further reduce the ability for publishers to know how people find their sites in Google — except for Google advertisers. A loophole in Google Secure Search continues to provide them with this data. “We are currently testing the change to use SSL for built-in Google searches in our Firefox nightly channel. If no issues are uncovered, it will move through our Aurora and Beta release channels before eventually shipping to all our Firefox users. This will include migrating the changes to our non-English version of Firefox, as well,” said Johnathan Nightingale, Director of Firefox Engineering, when I emailed Firefox about the posted change. How The Change Happened Privacy advocate Christopher Soghoian noted the change on his blog today. Back in February 2011, he … [Read more...] about Firefox To Use Google Secure Search By Default; Expect More “Not Provided” Keywords To Follow
For many years there has been a debate on whether UX and SEO can really go hand in hand, but this is not the case anymore. Today we’re examining how UX and SEO can make the perfect match. There’s no need to question nowadays the need to blend UX with SEO when building a website, as none of these two can stand on its own. User Experience (UX) focuses on target groups of people and usually bases decisions on their design preferences, as well as the industry’s trends, while SEO tends to focus more on the actual site and its data, in order to increase the content’s visibility in search engines. However, there is a spot that these two meet… Make pages primarily for users, not for search engines. And this is only a reminder on why SEO cannot work in isolation from other factors that affect a site’s performance, especially when the focus of the old days on keyword-stuffed topics is long gone. Here are five points that remind us how UX can blend with … [Read more...] about Five ways UX blends with SEO to improve a site’s performance