Thinking Outside The SEO Box

Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

I met with some people last month that run an e-commerce website. Their story is an all too familiar one. They’re not selling as much product as they had hoped to and want to see what can be done to change the situation.

In this article I’ll share with you what I shared with them. It may surprise you to hear some of my suggestions.

The beginning of our conversation was your typical SEO talk. It started with an explanation of how Google (and others) ranks web pages. The typical reader of this blog will be familiar with this, so I’ll skip it. But if you need a refresher, read the article Google’s PageRank Explained.

After explaining to them the significance of inbound links to their site it didn’t take long before they asked the question that always gets asked at this point, “How do we get people to link to our website?”

I deflated their spirits be telling them that it’s not easy. You see, e-commerce sites, like theirs, don’t typically attract people wanting to link to them. Nobody, naturally, wants to link to a website that sells jewelry or Hungarian food condiments and trying to get people to link to a site they don’t want to can be an Lose Weight Exercise in futility. I know, because I’ve done it many times.

But hope is not lost. There is a way…

The short answer is you have to give people a reason to want to link to you. But how does an e-commerce site do that?

That’s what we’ll look at in this article. No, it’s not your typical, “How to acquire links” article so read on.

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Random Bits Podcast with Danny Sullivan

Monday, February 25th, 2008

Random Bits
Episode 17 – 02/25/2008
Guest: Danny Sullivan, Search Engine Land
Background: SEO/SEM Guru
Total Time: 24 minutes

Danny founded Search Engine Watch in 1996 and spent a decade there educating the world on search engine marketing. In 2006 he left SEW to start up a new website Search Engine Land where he serves as Editor-In-Chief. Danny also continues to speak at Search Marketing Expo (SMX West) on all things search related. Perhaps no one has done more to evangelize SEO than Danny Sullivan.

Podcast Highlights

  • 00:29 – What in the world is a technologist?
  • 01:13 – What’s new with Danny?
  • 04:34 – Does Google deserve it’s high public approving rating?
  • 12:11 – How has social media change Internet Marketing?
  • 16:20 – What are some social media strategies?
  • 17:19 – We learn about Sphinn.com
  • 21:21 – Random question time

Play the podcast now! Notice the Random Bits podcast player on the right?
Or Download the podcast for later!
Or Subscribe to the Random Bits podcast feed!

WordPress – A 5 Minute SEO Mod

Friday, November 30th, 2007

In WordPress, by default, when you click on the Read More link, the web page loads and then “jumps” to the spot where the <!--more--> tag is set in the post. Whether you like this effect or not is personal preference, but it can pose an SEO problem.

The Problem

The problem is that it creates two different links to the same page. For example, here would be the two links to Paul’s last article:
http://www.search-this.com/2007/11/26/css-a-recipe-for-success/
http://www.search-this.com/2007/11/26/css-a-recipe-for-success/#more-464

So what can sometimes happen is that if the article becomes popular, half the people will link to it one way while half the people link to it the other way. Thereby dividing the total link juice in half.

The Fix

The only way I have found to fix this is to modify a file in the wp-includes directory.

For WordPress 2.2 and up modify the post-template.php page.
For WordPress 2.1 and below modify the templates-functions-post.php page.

Somewhere around line 124 comment out the $output line with the "#more-$id\" in it and change it to the below:

  1. //comment out the old line
  2. //$output .= ' <a href="'. get_permalink() . "#more-$id\" class=\"more-link\">$more_link_text</a>";
  3. // change to the line below
  4. $output .= ' <a href="'. get_permalink() ."\">$more_link_text</a>";

Just remember that each time you upgrade WordPress you will need to remod this line. But if it helps out with SEO it’s a small price to pay.

SEO Rewind: Great SEO Articles

Thursday, November 29th, 2007

If you missed any of these past SEO articles you can now catch up with this rewind:

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