Search Engine Ranking Factors 2015

It is out again, a Moz survey of factors affecting search engine rankings. The purpose is to gain insight into the factors that may help a website’s visibility in search engines.

Moz surveyed this time over 150 leading search marketers who offered their expertise in over 90 ranking factors. They also ran an extensive correlation study to determine which features of websites and webpages are associated with higher search rankings.

These factors are showing the characteristics of web pages that tend to rank higher, but are not “proof” of what search engines use to rank websites. Combine this survey with your experience and knowledge of search engine algorithms, it will lead to better SEO practices!

You can read the full article through the following link: Search Engine Ranking Factors 2015

SEO Training for Women Executives

Nordic Search is organizing a two-day SEO training and networking event for women executives 4-5 September, 2014. It will be held in the Japanese Spa Hotel Yasuragi Hasseludden (www.yasuragi.se).  It is an unique opportunity to learn SEO and network in relaxed settings!

yasuragi-300x120WHAT IS THE COURSE OFFERING?

SEO is a cross-discipline effort and it requires across-the-board training of key management, influencers, and implementation staff in order to gain momentum and share common language. During the two days we will go through the following areas:

  • Basics of SEO
  • Understanding Google
  • Challenges of SEO
  • Optimizing Press Releases and Content
  • Content Marketing
  • Blog Advertising

There will be a lot of practical examples and exercises during the training. These examples and exercises will help you to learn and understand search engine optimization through practice.

HOW YOU CAN USE THE KNOWLEDGE GAINED IN YOUR DAILY WORK?

  • You will know the basics of SEO and you understand how Google works and the importance of following the changes in its algorithm.
  • You will be able to make website improvements that will have immediate effect on your traffic and revenues.
  • You will understand what challenges SEO faces.
  • You will learn to write press releases in an optimized way and help those reach the target group better.
  • You will understand SEO reports and it is possible for you to have a better dialogue with vendors such as marketing and digital agencies.

WHO IS IT FOR?

The course is targeted for middle and top level female managers within marketing and/or communication.

PRICING

The price of the 2 days training and networking event in the Japanese Spa Hotel Yasuragi Hasseludden is 12 000 SEK. The price includes:

  • Accommodation in a single room in the Japanese Spa Hotel Yasuragi Hasseludden
  • Morning and afternoon coffee both days
  • Lunch both days
  • 4 course dinner on Thursday
  • Breakfast on Friday
  • Japanese Spa with Yukata (cotton bath robe), slippers and bathing suit; to be taken home
  • Course material
  • SEO Course Diploma
  • SEO support via email one (1) week after the event

Booking latest by Aug 15th, 2014. For more information about the course, please contact Laura Lilja, tel. +46 704 82 52 12, laura@nordicsearch.com.

Google Penguin 2.0 rolled out

Since the last Google Panda update in March this year, webmasters have been waiting for Google Penguin 2.0 to hit the search results. Yesterday, the 22nd of May, Google rolled out “the next generation of Penguin”, Penguin 2.0 update.

According to Matt Cutts, the new Penguin will have much bigger impact in certain small areas and it will go deeper than the previous update:

“It’s gonna have a pretty big impact on web spam.”

Matt Cutts stated that about 2.3 % of Eglish-US queries are affected to the degree that a regular user might notice. The update will affect non-English queries as well, and the scope of Penguin varies by language: languages with more webspam will see more impact.

But what will Penguin 2.0 bring?

Penguin 2.0 was specifically going to target black hat spam, but it will have significantly bigger impact on spam than the other Penguin updates have had.

Sources:
http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/penguin-2-0-rolled-out-today/
http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2270007/Google-Penguin-2.0-Update-is-Live

5 Ways to Boost Your Local Search

Online results for local search vary based on the location of the searcher. In a recent study it was discovered that 97% of consumers search for local business online.

This is true in many situations where buyers first enter a location-specific search term into Google or Yahoo. For example, if a person is searching for a diving school, he or she may spend time on the Internet searching for information about diving locally. If your business is local brick-and-mortal, a great way to boost your online visibility is via local search (SEO). The infographic below is a sneak peak data from the local search study results.

Improving Your Local Search

Local directories: Not everyone is using search engines to look for info, some visit local directories. Look for local directories and list your website in the right section of a directory. Make sure you provide them with enough of accurate information to ensure your site shows up in local searches. Other benefits from submitting your site to local directories is that they have higher value (they are focused only on one area) and you can increase inbound links .

Blogging: On a regular basis, post well written and relevant content, aimed at attracting attention of the local buyers. Google still claim to have the same objective as before: to return the most relevant information as quickly as possible. This is why you should use specific keywords in your content writing, those that match local buyers keyword search. Frequent content writing can also help you increase your position in location-based searches.

Local Business Listings: Add your local listings on Google, Yahoo and Bing. For example, by using Google places for business you will be able to update the information, upload images and add other company details such as business hours, specializations and so on. You can also create, claim and verify you business listing not only in search engines but also on popular social sites such as on Foursquare and Facebook. The benefits are being visible not only to online visitors but also mobile users. The keyword in the process of improving your local search is location, location, location.

Location pages: It is essential that you include a physical location on your website with the information such as business address, service areas and the name of the cities you offer your services. Your detailed information you provide on your “contact us” page will help both visitors to find your place and search engines to discover your address and show it in a search.

Social Sites Optimization: On your social sites such as Facebook Twitter, Linkedin, Google + and other social networks complete your contact information and turn on your location. The information you provide should match the real information, such as your physical location address and phone number.  Also, remember the high quality written content you uploaded on your website with the specific local keywords selection? Share this content on your social sites. More your content is shared more Google will put value to it and more frequently your business will show in local search.

You Should (Not) Avoid Black Hat SEO

Ranking high in search became harder and the practice of SEO is changing.

Most probably you have heard from your fellows web publishers about their website been negatively affected by latest Google updates and their website rankings falling. The majority of these websites were negatively affected as a result of practicing ‘Black Hat SEO’ tricks, others because of offering bad user experience.

Frequent updates or algorithm changes can damage website rankings. They are also necessary in order to reduce the spam and improve user experience. The constant changes however, will sometime mean what was considered to be legal white hat SEO method yesterday, it turns out to be black hat SEO today. This is why it became questionable what is actually black hat SEO and why you should (not) avoid the black hat SEO method.

Black Hat SEO vs. White Hat SEO

The black hat SEO does not necessarily follow the search engine guidelines.  While this method is very tempting it is often used by sneaky marketers who want to achieve big results fast, or rank high for the web’s most competitive terms. Their practices include short – cuts such as: link farms, content cloaking and other secret methods which promise only short-term gains. On the opposite side is the white hat SEO. Its method aim is to follow search engine guidelines, almost all the time and implement long term strategies. It is considered to be safe showing positive results on a long run, but being very slow in achieving set goals.

Both methods have the same goal, for a site to rank high in search, or to naturally fall near the top of the search engine results pages and boost website visibility. The fact is that SEO is not easy. It is hard, it is not fast process and it can get complicated. However, it is possible to stick with right methods and avoid bad tactics for your SEO efforts to work.

Avoid Keyword Stuffing. This is an old black hat SEO practice not valid anymore. Having only pages stuffed with keywords not related to what you do will only get you penalized by search engines. Instead, learn what keywords to use, where and how. Keywords you choose should be relevant to what you do.

Get rid of Invisible Text. Are you trying to trick search engines by adding keywords or text on a white background hoping to attract more search engine crawlers? That is an ancient practice and against search engine rules. Get rid of this habit, be open with what you have to offer and try not to be sneaky.

Have valuable content. “Content is King.” It can be optimized, searched and shared. Avoid writing content only for search engines. Rather, optimize your site for search engines by offering unique and well written content that brings value to your readers. Good content is also worth linking to. Write quality articles targeted to your customers yet search engine friendly. More your customers like what you write, more likely they are willing to share your content. More they share your content, comment on your work, more search engines give relevance to your website and your site has better chances to be indexed fast. A good page is considered to be the one that has a quality text and that answers to the search query.

Quality inbound links. One of the most effective and highest impact SEO practices is to promote your content on other websites that link back to your website. More you have inbound links to you site better off you are and search engines gives more relevance to the content of your page. But there are good links and bad links. Before you engage with link building tactics conduct a link profile analysis of the client’s website. Make sure you have only good inbound links to your site otherwise you risk to be penalized.

Always measure and tweak. Set up your goals monitor and measure your SEO efforts. Make changes accordingly.

SEO can go wild because of the frequent updates and algorithm changes. Putting too much effort to figure out if your method is white hat SEO or black hat SEO is also exhausting. A good approach is to stick with techniques that target the right elements of the website and to make sure they are as optimized as possible. The results might not be fast, but at least they will be permanent, you will get website ranking, drive organic traffic, and capture more leads.

Article by Daliborka Krstic

Nordic Search Ltd & Clever Solutions Ltd Announce Cross-Marketing Partnership

Nordic Search Ltd is pleased to announce a new partnership with Clever Solutions Ltd. Partnership to include cross-marketing of Nordic Search Ltd SEO services and Clever Solutions Ltd IT solutions.

With the explosion of the Internet and its vast diversity of choices, both online consumers and businesses experience different challenges. To stand out from the crowd, companies of any size are continuously searching for ways to differentiate their products. Alternatively, online consumers are puzzled whom to trust.

Nordic Search believes the cross-marketing will not only open new markets and ensure the success of both of companies, but also enhance positive experience for the clients.

Clever Solutions Ltd offers high level technical support, quality software solutions and fast, round-the-clock services. Their offerings include:

  • International IT Consultancy
  • International IT System Administration
  • Document Management System
  • Project InLine
  • Software Development
  • It Security

Find out more about Clever Solutions Ltd, visit their website and make sure to follow them on Twitter at: @CleverSolutions.

Article By Daliborka Krstic

A new ‘shiver,’ this time from Facebook

You bought 11K ‘Likes’ for your Facebook fan page? New Facebook updates might not ‘Like’ it at all!

Recently Facebook updated its integrity system in order to prevent false Likes (Facebook Security page). The improved system wants to offer to fan pages and brand owners more accurate and measurable results of fan count and demographics.

This new method aims to identify and then take actions for suspicious Likes.

For instance, purchased (bulk) Likes or Likes gained by malware will be removed.

The company said the change will impact less than 1% of the Likes for any particular page.

The idea is that people connect only with those pages and brands they have chosen to connect. Here’s what Facebook update says:

“We have recently increased our automated efforts to remove Likes on Pages that may have been gained by means that violate our Facebook Terms. On average, less than 1% of Likes on any given Page will be removed, providing they and their affiliates have been abiding by our terms.”

The inventive process of buying Likes might seem a smart move. This could be especially attractive for new pages and brands in order to increase their online awareness. Buying fans however is similar to buying email list. You end up with a large number of people who actually don’t know anything about your business. Meaning, they will most likely never buy from you.

While any page or brand would like to have instant large number of followers, buying Likes may not be such a good idea. It may bring more harm than good. What works is to understand what motivates people and then give it to them. Two main reasons why you should not buy Facebook Likes are:

  1. It is against Facebook regulations.
  2. Bought Likes are not targeted.

People will not like your page only because you have 11K fans. They will like your page because it benefits them. Also, slowly increasing fan base gives you less of that “shiver” feeling.

Article By Daliborka Krstic

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!