Five Quick Facts About Google Hummingbird

google hummingbird

I’m sure you are asking yourself: Isn’t there more to Google Hummingbird than five tips?

Well of course there is!  I just happen to find it is much easier to read and retain information small bits at a time.  So let’s get started shall we?

Fact Number 1

If you’ve read anything about Google Hummingbird, you’ve heard the buzzwords Conversational Search.  Without getting too technical, what this basically means is Google is using the small microphone icon in the search box.  When you click on that microphone (assuming you have configured your computer correctly) you can verbally ask what you are searching for and Google will display your question in the search box.  What you may or may not know is Google Hummingbird is using Knowledge Graph for that query.

Fact Number 2

This is something you may have noticed with the release of Google Hummingbird, but may not have made the connection.  People have been writing longer blog posts.  This is where I have a problem, because I have a tendency to write short posts.  The content is still what I would consider value-added, however according to Google Hummingbird for good SEO the best length for a blog post would be between 550 – 1000 words.  What this means for you – if you have a typical content rich blog, you should be good.  If you have one of those sites that skims the first sentence or worse yet, just the title of a great blog with a link back to their blog so you can cash in on ads – Google Hummingbird is gonna cramp your style.

Fact Number 3

The more pages of original content you have on your site the more opportunity you have for search engines to find you.  Please note, you should NOT duplicate pages and only change a few words.  If you curate content from other pages, be sure to mix it up.  If you did bullets, change to numbers and change the order.  If you had a post with Top Ten, split the post in half.

Fact Number 4

Are keywords going away?  In a word, no.  In fact, not only are keywords still being used, what are also being taken advantage of to a greater extent are long tail keywords.

“Google Hummingbird will take a search engine query using long-tailed keywords and try to decipher the context of the question rather than chase the specific keywords within the question. The goal is to provide results that actually answer the question.”  source: Entrepreneur.com

Fact Number 5

Simple How-To’s rank higher than technical jargon.  If your niche is posting educational material, keep the terminology simple and easy to search.  According to Search Engine Journal, the term “How-To” doesn’t even take an advanced algorithm, so why not use “How to build a better mouse trap” instead of “Construct a mousetrap that is better than the one you have.”
So let’s recap:

  1. Google Hummingbird uses Conversational Search.
  2. Your post should be between 550 and 1000 characters long.
  3. Multiple pages of original content is good for search engines.
  4. Keywords are not going away and Long Tail Keywords are playing a bigger part than ever.
  5. Simple How-To’s rank higher than technical jargon.

Did you find this post useful?  Do you have anything you would like to add?  Do you have more questions about Google Hummingbird?  Be sure at let me know!

 

SEO & Cross-Links: Do You Use Them?

cross-link

What Are Cross-Links?

Cross-links are the links between posts within a blog or links between pages on a website. If you want an example of a really successful site that uses cross-linking, think Amazon.  You look at one book, and they suggest others with links. Many blog themes have cross-links built in based on the category you place the post in.

your social media mogul cross-linking

Cross-linking helps the search engines decide how relevant a web page is to a particular topic.  You want to stay focused on the topic or related material you are writing about when cross-linking. For instance, this post is about SEO and cross-links, so I wouldn’t want to put a cross-link to a post about Twitter. This would not benefit this post in the search engine “crawl”.

Use Anchor Text

When you want to link one article or post to another, you will want to use anchor text. Anchor text is a feature many bloggers often don’t take full advantage of when creating cross-links. What you don’t want to put is “click here” or “more” as your anchor text. Your anchor text should be the major keyword or key phrase you are using throughout your post. If you don’t have any other posts or articles with those keywords or phrases, they should at least be the same subject or topic as your post.  As you will notice, this post has several anchor text cross-links that all relate to SEO.  I had not written about cross-links before, but I have written about SEO.

I’ve created a short video that shows you exactly how to create an anchor text link using WordPress.

Now keep in mind, cross-links are great for websites and blogs, but you don’t want to go too deep.  Search engines like the sites to be relatively shallow and wide.  If your pages have too many sub-sub-sub categories or broken links the search engines won’t find your content no matter how great it is.

Be on the look-out for other sites with great examples of cross-links.  Do you use cross-links?  Do you use anchor text?  How have you incorporated this into your social media strategy?  I’d love to to know!

 

Blog Commenting for SEO: Easy as 1-2-3

How is Blog Commenting Considered SEO?

Blog commenting is one of the easiest and common linkbuilding methods available to everyone.  When you actually read the post and previous comments, you gain valuable information and in exchange you get a backlink from the site. Regardless of what your business or industry is, chances are, there’s a blog covering your niche.  I was reading a book by Danny Dover on Search Engine Optimization Secrets and he indicated he found a blog on white board markers.  Personally, I never would have thought there would be a blog about white board markers, but I found one too.   Blog commenting requires you to think and to read the article and perhaps the previous comments.

Most blogs have similar comment features that allow the reader to input their name, e-mail address, and website address along with their comment.  Let’s face it, as bloggers, we want to get feedback from our readers.  Are we giving them what they want?  Are we providing interesting, informative, entertaining, thought-provoking, or controversial posts?  As a marketing avenue, blogs are a necessity when it comes to effective and communicative internet marketing. And almost all blogs have comments allowed because it displays the nature of their readers and the effectiveness of the blog author as he moves his audience to say what they have on their mind.

blog commenting

1.

As you can see by the image above, as the reader of the blog, all you need to do is fill in the details and post your comment.  If and when you do, what usually happens is that your name becomes a link back to your website.

2.

Now I’m going to insert a suggestion here on what NOT to do (unless you frequently comment on a blog and have built a rapport with the blog owner – and then it’s still questionable marketing).  What you don’t want to do is put an extra link inside the comment box.  If you are wondering what’s the harm, well the blog owner might mark it as spam or will look down on you because you are being self-promoting and/or edit your comment.   What you also need to know is some blogs also format their blogs as “nofollow”*.   What this means is they have coded their blog to allow you to put links in the comment section, but when someone clicks on your link, the search engines will not follow.

3.

Make sure the blogs you comment on are quality blogs, with valuable information, decent Alexa rankings, or get lots of comments by other readers just to name a few attributes.  What you want to stay away from are the blogs that are almost all ads because they are likely to have their “nofollow” enabled. (*And as Saul Fleschman stated in the comment below, there is NO SEO value. Thanks Saul for adding that tidbit of information I left out.)

Below is an example of what a comment looks like after you have posted it.   If you will notice, my name “Knikkolette” is blue.  That is the link that goes back to my website www.yoursocialmediamogul.com.

blog commenting for SEO

 

So there you have it, blog commenting for SEO.

Do you have any ideas or comments to share?  Leave them in the comment section below and take advantage of the backlink! 🙂  If you have questions you’d like answered, feel free to post them on my Facebook fan page. 🙂

How-To Review Your Favorite Blogs with Alexa

Show Your Favorite Bloggers You Care by Giving Them Reviews on Alexa

Did you know you could give reviews on Alexa?  I thought it was a pretty cool feature so I started giving reviews to fellow bloggers.  I researched the Alexa website to see if the reviews affected the rankings but I didn’t see any documentation supporting that one way or the other.   It’s still a nice way to give your favorite website or blog a “kudos for a job well done” or , if you don’t like a particular site, you can put that in the Alexa review as well.

The following video shows you step-by-step how you can give your favorite website or blog a review using Alexa.

As always, if you have any comments, feel free to comment below or check me out on Facebook.  If you like these posts, sign up for our mailing list.

How My Alexa Rank Dropped 1,461,897 Points in 30 Days

What is Alexa Traffic Rank?

According to Alexa’s website:

“The traffic rank is based on three months of aggregated historical traffic data from millions of Alexa Toolbar users and data obtained from other, diverse traffic data sources, and is a combined measure of page views and users (reach). As a first step, Alexa computes the reach and number of page views for all sites on the Web on a daily basis. The main Alexa traffic rank is based on a value derived from these two quantities averaged over time (so that the rank of a site reflects both the number of users who visit that site as well as the number of pages on the site viewed by those users). The three-month change is determined by comparing the site’s current rank with its rank from three months ago. For example, on July 1, the three-month change would show the difference between the rank based on traffic during the first quarter of the year and the rank based on traffic during the second quarter.”

On August 4, 2011 I checked my Alexa rank after a conversation with a friend Saul Fleischman, who I met through Twitter .  Saul has shared a lot of information with me, and he is the one who reminded me about Alexa.  I had some experience with it years before, but had completely forgotten to implement any procedures to improve my rankings on this blog.  Imagine my embarrassment when I saw my score!  I should know better!  O.K. – time to get over myself and get to work and the following is what I actually did to improve my score.

1.  Comment On Blogs

On my post dated August 4, I said I would post a few comments each day to various blogs.  Wishful thinking on my part – I probably posted to 2 – 4 blogs each week.  If I would have posted to that many each day my score would have dropped even more.

2.  Participate on Forums

I found one forum I thought I would participate in and signed up – but never actually did anything with it.

3. Write about Alexa Ranking and Search Engine Optimization

I didn’t write about Alexa ranking per se, but I did write a couple of posts about search engine optimization.  I only write 1 – 3 posts per week, and I try to vary the subjects of my posts so in 30 days I only wrote 2 posts on search engine optimization.  Had I increased the number of posts per week, I could have written more and reduced my number more.

4.  Submit my blog to search engines and directories

I was diligent with this task the first week after the post. I would say I probably submitted my blog to about 2 dozen directories and search engines.  After that I quit completely.  Should I have continued?  Probably.  There are so many search engines and directories out there.   Let’s be honest – the average user isn’t going to go “overboard” and submit to every single directory and search engine.  I also only used free directories and did not use any reciprocating link directories.  I wanted to perform this task as an average user.

5.  Submit my blog to RSS Feeds

There are only a few, i.e. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Triberr.   I didn’t go out a look for any beyond that even though there are more.

6. Increase Post Frequency

I should have increased my post frequency from 1-3 times a week to 3 – 5 times a week but I did not.  I wanted to see how my rank would improve keeping the same post frequency.  As you can see, it did drop quite a bit.

7. Expand Social Networking

This is one area I did work on.  I started using StumbleUpon a bit more, and Digg a couple of times.  I even signed up for a couple of new Social sites.  I think this may be one of the areas that helped my score the most.

8. Write Quality Content

Per my previous post, I am now paying very close attention to the SEO widget I installed and making sure I meet the criteria that makes a post “quality”.  I want to make sure the search engines can find my posts.

9.  Install Alexa Toolbar

That was an easy fix – I haven’t really used it, but I did install it.  I should probably go to Alexa’s website and read more about what the toolbar does and how to use it.

10.  Use Alexa Rank Widget

I found a widget that shows the rank of the site as well as Google’s page rank and the Technorati rank.  I haven’t even addressed Google’s page rank and my Technorati account won’t let me edit my profile so that’s another issue altogether.  I’m still trying to figure out why or how this affects the Alexa rank on my site – I’m sure it is measured back behind the scenes.

So there you have it – what I did the last 30 days to reduce my Alexa number.  I didn’t jump through too many hoops.  Everything I did is easily duplicated by anyone else.  What do I plan to do the next 30 days to lower my Alexa number?

1. Post comments on blogs with lower Alexa numbers than mine.

How can you tell if someone’s Alexa number is lower than your own if it’s not posted on their site?  Just go to www.Alexa.com and put their URL in the search box.

2. Increase my posts to a minimum of 3 per week.

This will be difficult for me – but I have to do it.

3. Look for more directories to submit my blog.

Whether they are regular directories or RSS, I want to find at least a dozen more.

4. Continue participating more in StumbleUpon and other social platforms.

More and more people are participating in this and other platforms like this.

August 4, 2011

 

September 4, 2011

alexa