Google Updates – Avoid Being Penalized

Having skilfully designed website with super effects is not enough. And if you have followed news about Google Penguin, the webspam algorithm update, you probably learned that.

For your super website to be found online it needs to be well optimized, page by page. But the journey does not stop here. Next to having a well optimized page and the stunning design you also need to frequently update your website with a quality content, have others link to your specific landing page, follow regularly trends, observe searchers online behaviour, stay updated with latest market needs and closely follow search engine updates. Otherwise you get “slapped” by Google.

Search engines collect, store data and deliver results in SERPs for a query. They also define how, why and if your website will be found online based on their algorithms and parameters. Google, being the number one SE has also the great impact not only on your website visibility but also how searchers are getting results when they are finding information about you. In particular, with Google’s frequent algorithm swings, your website page rank or domain authority can be severely damaged which will influence how others find you online.

Google tweaks every year their algorithm with 500-600 minor changes, and every few months they release the bigger change. Recently, At SES San Francisco event Matt Cutts answered few questions about the Penquin update which keeps many webmasters on alert. At the event Matt Cutts said “you don’t want the next Penguin update.” He warned that the Google “engineers have been working hard,” on this update.

How to Avoid Google Penalization

To have your site ready for Google’s next algorithm change, follow updates and newest SEO guidelines and consider doing following:

  • Upload frequently new and original content to your website.
  • Have unique titles. They should look natural and targeted for humans.
  • Metadata. Every page needs to be in order. Remember to put keywords in the meta data.
  • Your content should be optimized for both search engines and human readable.
  • Don’t practice black-hat SEO tactics (for example, don’t add hidden text in web pages).
  • Pay attention to keyword density because if you don’t Google will.
  • Only the first anchor text link counts, don’t link repeatedly to the same page with the same anchor.
  • Don’t overly optimize your web pages. Make sure you optimize for local search engines.
  • Don’t practice manipulative linking. Check your back links and if they are coming from bad sources, contact webmasters and ask them to remove these links pointing to your site. And, avoid black-hat link building strategies (link buying, link farming).

The impact of Google frequent updates and tweaking its search engines does not affect only few. Rather, it can shape anyone’s online presence and for quite many it may result in being penalized. If you are curious to learn more about 2012 Google updates, which might also help you in adjusting your web pages, visit SEOmoz website. They did a great job listing all Google updates, here is the link: http://www.seomoz.org/google-algorithm-change.

Article by Daliborka Krstic

Nordic Search offers – Free SEO Analysis

How is your website optimized from SEO perspective? How is your website ranking today? How is your link profile?

Some websites have a great design but nobody can find them because they are not ranking in search engines. Some websites have been recently punished by Google because of over-optimization or bad design.

Free SEO Analysis

Nordic Search is offering an initial SEO Analysis for free to discover the weaknesses of your website and giving you suggestions how to improve the site from SEO perspective. The analysis can be either related to onsite optimization or your site’s link profile.

If you are interested in getting your website analyzed, contact us by sending us an email, tell us a bit about your business and target market, and what you would like to achieve by SEO.

Write “Analyzing website” as a subject line so we know immediately what your email is about.

Nordic Search recruiting: Finnish Website Promoter

Nordic Search is looking for a Finnish speaking Website Promoter.

Are you a creative, street smart and ambitious person with passion towards internet? Are you money-driven and motivated to work hard to reach your goals?

If your answer is “Yes” to the questions above, this might be a good match for you.

As a Website Promoter you will be working with different clients and make sure that they will be visible in Internet. The work can be done on freelance bases.

We are offering a young, dynamic and flexible working environment. You will get a solid base for working with Internet marketing in the future through learning a lot about Google, link building and search engine optimization (SEO).

If you find this interesting, send your CV + cover letter and convince us to take you on board!

Does Your Site Have Broken Links? Find Them Before Search Engines Do

Search engines do not want broken links in their search! Also, users don’t like dead ends.

If your visitors see a 404 or 403 error for a page they requested on your website, it means that specific page was not found. As search engines, visitors too prefer to land on your site and get the content they searched for.

Broken or DEAD links can bring quite some damage to your web site. For example, search engines may think that the page does not exist anymore and then remove it from the search. Also, your visitors might be discouraged to visit your site again, once they do not find they are searching for.

There are different reasons why would you have broken links. You might have moved the page or removed the page without doing redirection. Or, some website owner made a mistake when linking to your site. Here’s how broken links could harm your online presence:

  • Less customers – you may lose current customers if they keep running onto dead ends. Bad for reputation.
  • No customers – When other websites link to a specific page on your website which has a broken link, they may equally send new target customers to a non-existing page. With such a problem you may lose getting new targeted customers.
  • Search Engines – If search engines cannot find already indexed page, it may have negative impact on your quality score.
  • Lost traffic – With quite many broken links, your site will not be crawled as often and eventually pages / site will not be indexed.

Link Checker for Broken Links

Solution to this problem is to first check and then, as soon as possible find a way how to fix broken links. There are quite many useful FREE tools available for finding broken links. For instance Google Webmaster Tools is a free tool and it can help you find URL errors. It can also provide you with an information when was last it tried to crawl the URL and briefly explain what errors deserve your actions NOW. The problem with Google Webmaster Tools is that it is always a bit late with their analysis which in many situation can mean “too late.” One should check for broken links before Google does (to avoid penalty).

Health of your links can be checked with a link validator, a program called LinkChecker. LinkChecker is a free GPL licensed website validator. Once you install the program, all you need to do is enter the URL of your website on the command line. The LinkChecker will validate all pages as well as external links pointing outside of your URL. Here’s how it looks:

How to Fix Broken Links

Once you get your visitors to visit your website, you want to make sure they keep coming back. Here is what you could do in order to fix broken links:

  • Create a custom 404 error page so your visitors KNOW only one page is missing. Here you can offer them other links to follow. Having a custom 4o4 error page is a must for every website.
  • Redirects. Have 301 redirects when moving a page to a new destination or when completely removing a page. This way search engines and visitors will be redirected to its new destination.
  • If applicable you can create a new page and link a missing link to it.
  • Set automatic redirects (automatically redirects the site visitors to the new page) if your CMS is supporting them.
  • Regularly perform link check.

If not sure how to find out if your website have broken links and why, send us a quote at: info@nordicsearch.com. You can also visit our  Facebook Nordic Search Fan Page ‘Like’ us and share with us what is your approach when dealing with broken links by leaving a comment .

Article by Daliborka Krstic

How to Optimize Your Page Relevant to Search Engines and Users

Search engines have a goal, to find the most relevant content for a person’s search term. On the other hand, the mission of a user is to find exactly what he or she is searching on the Web. There is a one way to satisfy both and to make sure your page is properly indexed, by improving on-page optimization (On-page SEO), an important part of an effective SEO strategy.

Optimizing your page is rather important for search engines. In order to accept and show your page in SERPs (with information requested by users), search engines need to receive information first about a piece of content gathered by bots.

(Bots are programs which collect information about a page on the Web.)

More targeted information you provide, more chances for your page to be found / indexed. Users also need to have exact and relevant information they are searching for. Based on the information found on the page and its relevance, users will either engage, share the content and come back, or simply bounce. On-page optimization includes elements like content, HTML tags and keywords.

Search Engine Optimized Page

  • Keywords & Content – This is one of the most important elements of the website, particularly keywords. Keywords are useful for both, robots and users. Within the text on a page you should have specific keywords around which you form the content (keywords will also get attention of the crawlers). Spend some time learning which keywords work best for the particular page. Remember to bold and underline some of the keywords, one time each. As a rule of thumb avoid keyword stuffing. Make it look natural.
  • Title tag (at the top of the page) Include ONLY main keyword in your title tag and as close as possible to the beginning of the title. The length of your title should not exceed 70 characters.
  • Page headers or H1 Tags – Make clear headings to help users get an idea of what is the page about. Add header H1 tag. Remember, it should have the most important keyword.
  • Sub heading – Add H2 header tags. Here you can place your second most important keyword.
  • Meta description – This is a short description of your page which if done properly may induce clicks. Include keywords in your description. If possible add your keywords at the beginning of your text.
  • Image with Alt attribute – Properly including an alt tag to your images, it can improve your rankings.
  • URL – Make sure that each page on a website has a unique URL. If this part is not in order, your URL might look messy, needed to be fixed by redirects. Have the targeted keyword once in the given URL to boost your relevancy metrics.
  • Internal linking – A well structured, organized and meaningful internal linking will give positive signals to search engines and give truthful direction to users.
  • Site maps – Include sitemap.xml one for users and one for robots, they are like table of contents. Every page you consider, it will be indexed by Google.
  • Robots.txt Having robots.txt files you give instructions to robots about your site, such as which web folders to exclude from indexing.

Optimizing your pages is useful for both people and search engines. It will attract more targeted traffic, it will increase your online visibility, it will be more easy for search engines to index your pages, and it will become more accessible to your users.

Make sure your on-page (SEO) optimization is not overly optimized, but also it isn’t forgotten. Include keywords in your page title, header, have Meta description and have descriptive link text. This will not only help users find you easier online but it will also help major search engines show your article in SERPs for a specific keyword.

Article by Daliborka Krstic