We all know that content is the master of this universe. Search engines and social media provide compensation for original, applicable and factual content.
There was a time when you push articles that had no real girth with a few keywords, however; that time is passe. People in the the social media world are
more saavy. They will pick up pretty quickly if you were to try to pawn off work that is depthless or hollow. And plagiarism is easily discovered.
Therefore; ensure published content is unique.
Captivate your audience with your content. Make the content’s title captivating. Ensure you identify with your customer base, phrases and sayings
that are unique to a specific field or group. If you “speak their language”, your content will be more readily acceptable and interesting.
With this leverage, one can easily see how users will anxiously get to your page, and with Google’s Humminbird update, keep in mind mobile voice search.
In order to monitor user interest on specific topics, use the following links:
Google Search Autocomplete
Good AdWords Keyword Planner
Since users will likely read a short description of your content first, include key phrases in the first 100 characters of post text. If the user can place value in the first few sentences of the content,
your mission have been accomplished.
Your ultimate goal is to provide valuable content to users that will keep them coming back. Content marketing is so popular because it keeps your audience engaged and the returns will be phenomenal,
if properly done. You can have the perfect page, well designed and eye-catching, but without good content, the page falls short. And good content isn’t something that can be
“built” by anyone else.
APPROPRIATE ON-PAGE TAGS
Search engines and social media want to helpe the user, but the user need to understand what is being said to them. On-Page tags assist you by communicating the most
valuable information about your page.
Meta tags are important, but this is limited to some of them. The least your page should have is a title tage and a description. This ensures that you
have the ability to control what appears on search engine results pages (SerPs) and it provides you with the chance to summarize the information offered.
Whenever using title tags, use unique and relevant page titles on each page. Search engines show up to 50 characters of a title. Only the most important
words and phrases should be included in the meta description, of which generally show in search engines, up to 150 characters. Make it short. If your site
includes too many pages, these tags can be automatically generted by using a content management system (CMS) or plugin based on the content of a page.
Keywords are passe. When the internet was in it’s infancy, keywords communicated additional information about pages. But after spammers entered the system,
they became another useless tool. Google has admitted they haven’t used keywords since 2009 and Bing provides a penalty for those who even use them.
Social media meta tags have become extremely relevant. Social meta tags determine what content is shown when anything is shared, such as images, title, and author.
Open Graph, is the most popular social meta tag protocol. It is the standard structure for anything shared on Facebook. It is used on Linkedin and
Pinterest, while reserved as a fallback for Twitter and Google plus. There are a number of different tages available for the Open Graph protocol. Below, you
will find a few:
Open Graph tags for Facebook, Linkedln, and Pinterest
-og:title-The name of the title of the content, for example; “My First Post”
-og:type – The Open Graph type that describes the content succinctly
-og:image – The location of an image that should be shared with the content
-og:url-The canonical URL of the content
og:description – A short description of the content
og:site_name – The top-level name of the website
og:video- The location of a video that should be shared with the content
Facebook also allows you to include an admin ID:
-fb:admins – This provides ownership and determines the facebook ID of an admin, who has the ability to access Facebook functionality directly on the site.
Twitter Cards are meant to supplement media content to tweets. Using Twitter Cards ensures the tweet stands out in a feed and it allows users to view content like photos or video and prevents the need to navigate
away from their browsing experience. Some cards allows the collection of email addresses (lead generation) and also provide product information. Below are a few tags used to create
-twitter:card – The type of Twitter Card used (e.g. Photo Card, Apple Card, Summary Card)
-twitter:site – The Twitter username of the website sharing content
-twitter:description – A short description of the content
-twitter:creator – The Twitter username of the content creator (may be the same or different than twitter:site)
-twitter:image – The location of an image that should be shared with the content
Schema.org is the primary protocol for on-page tags for Google Plus and Google’s search engine.
Schema.org tags were originally designed as a single language to communicate between search engine and websites but are now also
being used for social media platforms. In any HTML element, these attributes can be applied anywhere in the markup of a page.
Schema.org is extensive, but we have a few common tags listed below:
-itemtype-“https://schema.org/” – The type of content referenced
-itemprop-“description” – A short description of the content
-itemprop-“image” – The specific image that should be shared with the content
Tying content back to verified sources, is something that which Google excels. The Executive Chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt, has recently stated
“Information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification.” Initially, Google Authorship tags
were used to work with Good plus profiles. Google has since dropped authorship markup from search results, however; it’s difficult to believe they’re
ignoring authorship completely.
Final notes on social meta tags:
-Image sizing has different standards on every social platform. Choosing one image size that will work for all services it the most simplistic way to go.
-The best bet is the basic set of Open Graph tag for the social meta tag, because they work on most significant social media platforms.
Use header tags (e.g. h1, h2, h3) to show important text and prioritize important. To illustrate, wrap the most important header in a h1 tag, followed
by slightly less important information in a h2 tag, and so on. Despite what you may hear from some guides, you an actually have more than on h1 tag, just don’t
In using a SEO Strategy, images are sometimes overlooked, but using “alt” attributes and intuitive file names for images helps
the subject matter of a piece of content be more easily understood. Akt attributes should be precise, specific, distinctive and should not include “image of”
or “graphic of”. Additionally, this is a needed for members of your audience who are visually impaired. Ironically, Google’s crawlers
see a website the same way a visually impaired person does.
Spammers frequently target your content so they can gain more links to their own sites. This is revealed in blog comments or message boards.
Nofollow tags prevent this by removing the effect of tagged links to search engines. Nofollow tags tells the user that a specific link
should not be followed by search engines. This negates any effect on search engine rankings.
Conversely, links that should be followed by a search engine must have appropriate anchor text. Anchor text is the text displayed when linking to
another page. The use of anchor text in a search engine is one way to ensure if the subject of a piece of content is recognized as being important by others in
the community. Search engines also look at the spread of anchor text leading to a page, therefore; if too many terms are exact or initiate from
websites lacking relevant content (which the system recognizes as someone trying to outsmart the system), it can damage rankings.
Oftentimes, a site displays the same content on multiple pages. This occurs if one product comes in different colors and each color has its own
page, the content on each page will be replicated. Because the duplicate content is punished by search engines, indicate the preferred URI with
canonical tags. For example, if the page has moved URLs, it can retain its link notoriety with a 301 redirect. Additionally, this the type of
redirect is used by most link shortening websites likes bit.ly and goo.gl, which is SEO-friendly.
Robots, Sitemaps, and Tools
A sites robots.txt file and XML sitemap, while not technically on-age tags, are two other ways to communicate with search engines. Search engine’s
crawlers review a website and checks for these two files automatically.
The robots.txt is a simple text file that is uploaded into a websites root directory to guide site indexing. It’s fundamental function is to
identify those pages to index and which ones to bypass. You can also use a robots meta tag on-page if you desire to do so, however; a text
file is recommended by all search engines. Also, the location of a sitemap in the robots.txt file can be specified.
An XML sitemap, succinctly put, is an exhaustive list of website URLs that should be indexed by search engines. It also contains more detailed
information about each page. For example, the last time if was changed and how it is relevant in relation to other pages. An HTML sitemap
differs from an XML sitemap in that it’s seen by site visitors and is used primarily for user navigation.
It’s also useful to know how to use Webmaster Tools like those provided by Google and Bing. As a free service to users, search engines offer these tools, and
they allow webmasters to:
-Optimize Schmema.org tags to communicate page content and organization
-Review how page listings will appear in results
-Check for crawling errors
-Scan for security issues
-Submit sitemaps to search engines
INTUITIVE SITE IA (Information Architecture)
It is vitally important, to create an optimal experience for all audiences using intuitive IA. In order to achieve this, one must provide clear
organization and navigation to ensure an intuitive flow and rovide structure for human visitors. The focus must be on human visitors because building a site
foundation with human beings in mind will result in positive performance on both search engines and social media platforms.
Human beings have an instinctive need to organize information and prioritize it. They must be able to relate and structure material in an intuitive way,
especially material with large amounts of information. Providing a systematic and well-documented sitemap, will guarantee information is grouped intuitively
and that important pages are indexed. Navigation requires instinctive internal link structure so that users will be guided in the easiest way possible. The
goal should be to reduce the number of click required to get to a certain page.
The URL slug, the part of the URL after the domain name, is another important way to organize information. Slugs should be easy to understand, and this is
important, because they are picked up by search engine results and social media posts. Using a clear URL like “viget.com/advance/responsive-design-an-overview”
and avoid strings of random characters, gives a clear indication of content that a user can see, by glancing at a URL. Using a URL to communicate
content information is an easy way for both search engine and social media users to decide whether or not a piece of content is worth reading (and ultimately,
Make sure you have no broken links. Broken links leaves users with a negative experience and increases the chances of the user leaving the website.
Users get the dreaded “404 error pages” when they rech a non-existent page, if they incorrectly type in the UrL or if they click on a dead link.
Building a useful 404 page to visitors to find the right information and access relevant content.
Choose a good Content Management System (CMS) to do the work for you.
CAPABLE FRONT END DESIGN
The first thing a visitor notices on a page is front end design. It also plays a huge part in SEO and SMO. When a user has to hunt for information, it can be
frustrating. It is important to design with your audiences’ needs in mind, and to communicate information efficiently.
It is important to create a design strategy for all devices. The user should have a good experience, no matter the medium, smartphones, tablets, laptops or desktops.
Responsie design is the way to go. Google states they prefer responsively designed sites over those with separate mobile experiences. Sites unable to adapt
to a mobile-friendly design my not fare well in desktop searches, but Google’s Hummingbird update takes care of that. However; if you have a separate mobile site,
make sure to alert search engines through their corresponding webmaster tools.
This is important because it allows a user to surface content quickly, and piques the interest of visitors. If you have advertisements on your site, limit their
intrusion. This goes for affiliate links as well. If you allow too much “stuff” content with them, you’ll go to the bottom of the class in search rankings.
Using images to display tex and Flash can be tempting to get things done quickly, however; don’t forget that search engines use
crawlers to index sites. Text is vital to help search engines communicate content on a page and the user’s experience. Use text in navigation to make sure
Using Flash is an easy way to animate and produce stylish images and text, however; it comes at the expense of your SEO, and it creates a bad experience on
The creation of lean pages are important for search engines. A browser must request all necessary files from a site server, when first visiting a page, which
are then stored in the cache so only unique page elements must be loaded in the future. Site speed plays a factor in search rankings, according to Google.
And even if this wasn’t the case, visitors would have a poor experience if pages load slowly (another reason you shouldn’t use code-heavy Flash). Plugins
are often used to solve problems, especially on popular CMS platforms such as WordPress. Many plugins are helpful, however; many add redundant code to pages.
The use of social sharing buttons, encourages the sharing of content across the web. Users can easily share content by hooking into social media APIs. However;
users tend to share content that’s already popular, therefore; content with low, or no shares, may discourage some users from sharing. User experience can also
be affected by buttons, depending on their size, and having too many social sharing options can have a negative impact on social sharing and lead to a user
who is unable to decide or commit.
Sturdy Back End Systems
The foundation of any experience is the back end systems of a page. It plays a significant role in SEO and SMO. When it’s functioning properly, users may not notice the back end, however;
when it isn’t functioning properly, they’ll certainly notice! There are a number of different SEO and SMO factors that are affected by page’s back end. Speed, reliability, IP address,
security protocol, and content management.
For years now, site speed has been a factor in Google’s algorithm. Because of this, it’s goal is to build fast pages that load quickly.
The overall page size is more important than speed, as it is needed for good hosting. Servers that are trusted and of quality, located near the majority of your
audience is needed to provide a good experience. If most of your site users come from Finland, it would be detrimental to have a server in Norway. Aside from
SEO implications, the faster the site, the more engaging to users, thus making it more prudent for users to consume and share content.
The “time to first byte,” or the amount of time it takes for an internet browser to get a response from a server when navigating to a specific page, is more important
than what many people believe, that is, page load time.
Knowing who your neighbors are, have always been important. This is especially true online. If using shared hosting, there is a high likelihood to have
a number of other sites on your same C-Block. A C-Block is essentially the collection of all IP address in which the first 3 bytes of data are the same.
For illustrative purposes, if the IP addresses 10.10.10.3 and 10.10.10.8 are on the same C-Block. If the majority of a certain C-Block of websites are
acting inappropriately, and you have the precarious position of being stuck in the middle, your ranking will suffer. While this situation is unique, you can avoid
this type of situation by dealing with reputable hosting services.
HTTPS is a secure protocol that prevent malicious activity like “man in the middle attacks.” Google recently announced HTTPS as a SEO ranking factor. Websites can take advantage of better SEO,
by protecting visitor security. Expenditure of precious resources occurs when switching to HttPS, and this isn’t for everyone, however; there is a number of other benefits that arise from using the protocol
such as access to additional analytics data.
Common SEO issues can be resolved with a structured back end using a content management system (CMS). Some advantages include automated:
-URL structure and slugs that give a preview of content
-Mega tags to inform search engines and social media sites of key information
-Image alt tags to communicate image content and make a page to index
-404 error page handling, which occurs when a visitor clicks a broken link or enters an incorrect URL
HEALTHY DIGITAL PRESENCE
Maintaining a health presence online is a key component of doing well on search and social websites. Communicating
with audience is now simpler than ever before, however; it’s just as easy to make mistakes. Management of reputation is a vital
component in succeeding digitally. You must build strong online relationships with trustworthy and reputable sources and avoid
Search engine algorithm factors like Pagerank, links have played a much larger role in the rankings of specific pages. The
quality and quantity of inbound links is a major factor in the organic search ranking algorithms. One should be cautioned, that
this invites the black hat SEO strategy of link building. This is where webmasters try to inflate search rankings by pointing links to a page from
Google’s Penguin update, combat this strategy. You must always be diligent in your awareness of a seemingly honest site could be
guilty by association. Search engines have long communicated that “earning” links works better than “building” then in the long run.
Therefore; some consistently buy links and use this as a standard. You should be cautious where you links are from and how they
may reflect upon you. A philosopher once said “Show me your friends and I’ll show you who you are.”
This same mindset should be kept concerning social media. Online reputation is integral in the imparting of information in mediums
like Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin. Social media platforms are working to keep out unscrupulous strategies by preventing the
practice of slick-baiting and updating sharing algorithms to take care of those who actually engage their audience. Facebook’s news
feed algorithm, known as Edgerank, takes into account many factors. While some social media accounts buys followers, through
a conscious effort, algorithms that track how much of an audience engages with a piece of content will put these accounts
at a disadvantage when fake audience don’t engage with any content. That must be one of the reasons
Twitter announced a roadmap including key algorithm changes.
Social media is useful because it engages an audience. This is why it is vitally important to contribute to ongoing conversations.
A common mistake is that too many accounts and brands broadcast without engaging users and/or don’t publish relevant content. These
costly errors can be prevented with a four-step cycle: gather data, analyze, implement change, repeat. You’ll likely find
that certain media resonate better with an audience than others. Questions are welcomed and participating in conversations with
users and groups will reap much more engagement than just tweeting without a plan into that vast space. To stay relevant, be relevant
and speak to your audience in their language.
In order to be relevant, one must actually have a social media presence. Keep your audience in mind when deciding which platforms are
most appropriate (hint: Google likes Google plus).
Create a solid strategy and focus on the message and the core values you wish to communicate. Expansion and growth are great, but ensure
your growth is with your targeted audience. The bottom line is that posts on services like Facebook gain inertia baed on engagement,
dictated by the news feed algorithm. If your legion of followers aren’t interest in what you are saying, a potentially great
piece of information and energy could all be for naught.
To manage social media accounts is cumbersome, but many social media management tools were developed to make scheduling and posting easier.
The appropriate frequency of choosing how often to post social media is difficult to determine. However; research has
uncovered general best practices. Posting to twitter, for example, may times a day is generally welcomed, but that type of
frequency may be overkill for other social media platforms like Linkedin. Remember, every audience is unique. Analyzing the
results of different strategies will help yield the best combination.