Saturday, 13 July 2013

How to Rank for a Keyword in 10 Steps

Ranking for a keyword in organic search is a repeatable process. You won’t get the results you want 100% of the time, especially if you’re a new website trying to rank for a popular keyword, but if you take content marketing and SEO seriously, you can start to make things happen. Things like rankings, and traffic, and sales, oh my!
Here are the ten steps to rank for a keyword in Google.

Step 1: Lay the Groundwork

This is really more of a pre-step than a first step. You’ll need to have some basics in place before you can hope to rank for any random keyword. These pre-requisites include:
  • A strong website – The longer your website has been around, accruing authority and links, the better. It’s also key that your entire site follow SEO best practices – start with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines if you don’t know what that means.
  • A network to draw on – In order to rank quickly for a keyword, it’s very useful to have a built-in network to share new content with – a blog following, an audience on social networks like Facebook and Twitter, email contacts you can reach out to for occasional help with a link. If you don’t know what that means, it’s time to start thinking about link building as relationship building.
Don’t rush this stuff in your race for Internet gold. If you don’t do things right the first time, you’ll just have to do them again later.

Step 2: Do Your Initial Keyword Research

You may think you know what keyword you want to target, but fact-check your instincts. Use several keyword tools to get a sense of the search volume for the keyword as well as the competition before you finalize your keyword choice. Your main considerations will include:
  • Choosing a keyword with good volume, but not too much volume – In general you don’t want to target a keyword that has low relative search volume if there’s an equivalent term that is much more popular. For example, there are usually over twice as many searches for “blah blah jobs” versus “blah blah careers.” However, don’t always automatically go for the keyword with the highest volume; some keywords are simply too competitive and not worth your time. You’re not going to rank for “airline” unless you are, in fact, an airline.

    find keywords to rank for
  • Choosing a keyword that’s relevant to your business model – You’re more likely to succeed in ranking for a keyword if the term is relevant to your site and your business. You’re also more likely to get some real return on your ranking – remember that rankings in and of themselves aren’t particularly valuable, unless they’re driving worthwhile traffic and leads. For example, a party planning business might target “how to cook for a party” – but “how to cook rice” isn’t really going to be relevant to them or their target audience.
At this stage of the process, you should also make a list of close variations on your primary keyword. These will be helpful in writing and optimizing your content later on.

Step 3: Check Out the Competition

Once you’ve settled on a keyword, do a search for it on Google and a few other search engines to see what your competition is already doing. Pay particular attention to:
  • The domains and URLs – How many are exact match domains? Does every URL in the top 10 include the keyword?
  • The titles – How do the title tags incorporate the keyword?
  • The type of content that’s ranking – Product pages? Blog posts? Videos?
  • The types of businesses that are ranking – Are they huge brands? Small businesses? News sites?
  • How authoritative those sites are – You can use a plugin like SEO for Firefox to check the age of the sites in the top 10, the size of their link profiles and so on.
You’re looking for ways that you can differentiate yourself. You’ll need to do at least as much as your competitors are doing to beat them. Ideally, you should be doing more, and doing it better.

Step 4: Consider Intent

The more specific the keyword (think long-tail keywords), the easier it is to gauge the searcher’s intent, and the easier it will be to serve up what those searchers are probably looking for. In search marketing, “intent” is our best guess at what the person using the search query really wants. Consider the following keywords and notice how much easier it is to guess the intent from the words alone as you go down the list:
  • glasses
  • eyeglasses
  • discount eyeglasses
  • discount eyeglasses frames
  • discount eyeglasses frames for kids
Ask yourself, what kind of content best serves the keyword? In this case, it would obviously be a selection of kid’s eyeglasses for sale. From the first term, you can’t even tell if the person is looking for eyeglasses or drinking glasses. And even for the second, the person might just be looking for pictures of eyeglasses; there is no clear intent to buy. An e-commerce business is mostly going to be trying to rank for commercial keywords.
Google’s founders have said that the perfect search engine would serve only one result. You want to be that one result that satisfies the searcher’s need so they don’t bounce back to the search results, looking for a better answer.

Step 5: Conceptualize the Content

Next, form a plan for the actual content you’re going to create that will – hopefully – rank for your chosen keyword. There are many paths to ranking for a keyword, including but not limited to:
  • An article
  • A blog post
  • A product page
  • An index or directory of links (to other pages on your site or around the web)
  • An authoritative guide
  • An infographic
  • A video
How long will it take to create the content? Who should create it? Will you be doing everything in-house or outsourcing? Do you have all the resources and budget you need? Don’t get defeated: No matter your size or your budget, you have the ability to create a blog post. Content like infographics and videos will require more resources. Sometimes, the best way to answer a search query is with some sort of tool, like a mortgage calculator. If this is the case, you'll need engineering resources.

Step 6: Execute

Here’s where the rubber meets the road. Execute on your plan. Again, you shouldn’t rush any of these steps, but it’s especially important not to rush this one. More and more, search engines are looking for high-quality content that benefits the searcher, not keyword-stuffed spam or pages full of ads that only benefit you. If you’d rather buy traffic than put in the effort it requires to earn “free” organic search traffic, investigate PPC. “SEO isn’t easy” should be your mantra.

Step 7: Optimize for Your Keyword

In reality, steps 6 and 7 should be intertwined. Optimize your content while you’re creating it, rather than applying optimization after the fact. This is where the list of keywords you formulated in step 2 comes in. Leverage those keywords where you can in your content, but not to the point of sounding like a crazy robot. Remember that there are a lot of “invisible” places for keywords, and I’m not talking about using white text on a white background or anything else that violates Google guidelines. I mean stuff like image file names – users won’t see these if they’re not looking for them, but they can increase your keyword rankings.
For a full list of on-page optimization factors, check out SEOmoz’s guide to the “perfect” page. Another good tip is to copy Wikipedia, whose pages tend to have stellar on-page optimization.
Wikipedia Keyword Rankings
Before you hit “publish,” it’s a good idea to quickly double-check your keyword research. It’s possible that your content has evolved during the development and creation phases, and you’ll need to make sure that there’s still alignment between keyword and content.

Step 8: Publish

It’s (finally) time to push your content out into the world. Depending on the type of content it is, you may need to be careful about scheduling this step. This isn’t usually a consideration for evergreen content, but it may be important for content that’s tied to something in the news, an event or a trend. You may also need to coordinate with PR or other interested parties at your company, for example when launching content related to a new product or service.

Step 9: Promote

This step is important and should come immediately after publishing – in fact, for big pieces of content, it’s great if you can do some media outreach before the piece goes live. Make sure you do what you can to get your content in front of as many eyeballs as possible before it even has a chance to rank for the keyword:
  • Share your content through your business’s social accounts – Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn et al. If you can, do this through your personal accounts too.
  • Use social buttons or widgets on your site to promote independent sharing – Make it easy for readers and viewers to keep the chain going. They’re more likely to tweet or share your article if all they have to do is click a button.
  • Build links to your content – Link building is still a huge part of SEO (even if it is the most annoying part). Check out our blog archive on the topic if you’re looking to learn about link building.
How to Increase Keyword Rankings
Accruing page views and social shares will help you accrue links, which will help you earn that ranking.

Step 10: Analyze

You’re not quite done yet! The web is a living medium, and it’s never too late to better optimize your content. Check your keyword ranking manually (be sure you’re signed out and not seeing overly personalized results) or with a rank checking tool. Also use your analytics to see what keywords your content is actually ranking for – they might not be the exact ones you initially targeted. If, after a couple of weeks or so, you’re not ranking for the right keywords, you have more work to do. Make sure that your content:
  • Is truly optimized
  • Is truly high-quality
  • Is truly visible
It’s also possible that the keyword you chose is too competitive and you need to scale back your ambition. Try targeting less competitive keywords until you’ve built up more authority.
That’s it! This is the process we follow to rank for hundreds of keywords related to search marketing. Whatever your business niche, you can make the same process work for you. So GET STARTED!

Friday, 3 May 2013

Continuing Google Update March 2013 EVERFLUX

Well the weather finally calmed down yesterday Monday March 25 2013, as high temperatures have been occurring since Friday March 22 2013. Usually when we see temperatures this high at Mozcast a Google update is occurring. However, as Matt Cutts and the Google web spam team mentioned, there will be no more confirmations of updates from Google. This does not mean we won’t be seeing them in action!
On Twitter yesterday on the Mozcast profile the question was asked is this a “Panda Everflux.” Well Google is constantly changing the algorithm so therefore it is always changing anyway. Now it just has more heat behind it and a much bigger punch to the websites that are hurt by this flux.
Recent Reports
On Monday at Seo Hop there was a post published to find out exactly what is going on. A large website in the UK had reached out and said their website lost rankings over the weekend.

Is It Connected?
I do think this is something new with the recent activity and is not connected to the Google Update Panda #25 on March 15 2013.There was no continuous activity from March 15th to now. There is continuous activity from March 22-25th. The longest span of time of high activity we have seen so far.

On the other hand Matt Cutts did mention that the Google Updates will now be rolling updates and would be continuous instead of manually being pushed out. Now we are seeing a new generation of Google updates after two years of manual updates.
Panfecta New Google Update Resource
A website will be published on April 8 2013, teaching how to fix Google penalties, stabilize search engines rankings, and increase traffic. Seo ‘s, internet marketers, and anyone who owns a website will benefit from this as every website needs to learn the future of SEO and how to future proof their website from more Google updates so their rankings and traffic do not decrease. Even websites that were hurt in the past will be able to fix their errors by watching hundreds of videos organized into courses teaching what needs to be done in order to please Google’s algorithm now and in the future. This website is Panfecta and will use the hashtag #GUO, which stands for Google Update Optimization.

google march flux
Serpmetrics is also reporting higher activity than normal along the same dates that Mozcast has reported. In fact a 30% increase in search engine flux. This is no coincidence, we are seeing exactly what the Google web spam team said was going to happen.’s recordings are off the charts, the highest we have ever seen. All the tools gauging the search engines are showing major activity these past few days. It is time to adapt and evolve entirely. This is the new normal!
google activity march

Google Update March 2013 Panda Update & Penguin Update Coming Soon

On March 12, 2013 Matt Cutts head of web spam at Google, announced a panda update coming Friday March 15th or Monday March 18th in 2013. This will produce Google Panda Update #25. A suspected panda update may have occurred this past week as many webmasters were in webmaster world chatting about how many things have changed in the SERP’s.
Also announced is that the search quality team is currently working on a major Google Penguin Update coming very soon. This is regarded as a major update as many websites will be affected. This will produce the Penguin 4 update we have been waiting for.
March 11, 2013 Changes
Changes that occurred included sites like yellow pages ranking above original sites that have a link from the yellow pages website. I noticed this as well in some niches and sites like yelp and yellow pages ranking above sites that should be ranking above these somewhat “directory” websites. Doesn’t make much sense at all that Google would rank a “directory” type-site above results that deserve to be there. Especially because Google de-valued links from directories in the past.

Other changes include websites stealing images and ranking above websites that were the original creator of the image in Google image search. This should definitely not be happening and seems to be an error on Google’s part in their image search tools. Seems like they are still toying with this image search algorithm as many changes were recently made to the whole display of this portion of Google search.
One more noticeable occurrence during this time period is that webmasters noticed websites with stolen content ranking above originators of this content. Another big no no for Google as they defend that the originator will always be rewarded over the copier. Well this doesn’t seem to be the case and is very unfair, as originators should always be rewarded for their hard work in producing original content.

Link Networks Being Manually Targeted
Big announcement last week that Google is manually targeting link networks and really cracking down hard in 2013 on these types of sites. Many adverse affects will happen if your site is getting links from these link networks. Even if a site that links to you that is caught for having a link on these networks will affect your site as well. Be on the look out for link devaluation to your site and fix it accordingly with high quality links. Matt Cutts explain that these penalties are for clear cut cases and that webmaster guidelines are very straight forward in what is expected from a website.
Google Quality Raters
In other news Google has given insight to its quality rater system. This is where real live people grade websites in accordance with user experience. It is said to not have a direct affect on algorithms, but is used when pushing out Google updates to an extent after the web spam team reviews it.
Website Advertorial Penalization
Prior news releases mention that major sites have been penalized for using advertorials in their content. This goes to how you that the Google team is on top of all aspects of spam and to do things right as you may get caught.

Google Seo Video Tutorial Website Launching April 1, 2013
Speaking of doing things right. Seo Hop has decided to launch a Seo video tutorial website with hundreds of high definition videos teaching webmasters how to do things right in Google’s eyes. This will be the most valuable website for seo’s and internet marketers, or anyone hurt by Google updates panda & penguin. We will be announcing the release of this site very soon.

Google Panda Update & Penguin MK2

Internet content is becoming a trickier force to deal with. The number of websites, blogs, and links all over the web make it difficult to sift through and gain accurate information on the subjects you are after. Content generating companies should note that they can no longer get away with stuffing their informative articles with keywords related to the links they are spreading. Users have more access to information via data plans and interfaces found on smartphones and tablets, so readers and surfers will be more discerning on what they look for.
In the SMX West panel of “The Search Police: Matt & Duane’s Excellent Search Engine Adventure” the two speakers talk about how paid links, blog posts, and comments have become spam issues when it comes to the search results on Google. These usually drive away site visitors. To assure your site and links of long-term visits, prioritize the content. The articles you produce should be what your market is looking for and give them new information. Once you have accomplished this feature, then you can focus on the links’ social presence. A well-written article will be shared on networks such as Twitter and Facebook, leading its increased readers to your website, and eventually your product or service.
Google has also put effort into raising the standards of content with its Panda update. This update will avoid any more website spam from showing up in the search engine results. Also referred to as a “real time update”, Google Panda was launched during the second week of March. Apart from preventing links to spam, the update will decrease the rank of offensive websites, thus providing users with more useful and content-centric links. Website developers will have to step up their game in making sure that the link comes out in the highest rankings. There is that fear of having the website rank lower due to misinterpreted spam or a mix of content that relies on pad links and blog posts. But according to some reports, Panda update filters are not as reliable as they hope to be, so web developers and owners will also have to wait and see what this upgrade has to bring for their rankings and traffic.
Given this development, web content developers need to stress the importance of content in the rank, followed by social networks, and with SEO as the last priority in the lineup. SEO will largely be determined by the previous two features, with Google reporting that they will also employ more use of the social metrics.
The SMX West panel talk continues to stress that “long term, social identity” holds the biggest relevance and will continue to do so in the future. Stepping up your content’s game will be sustained through the work of your brand or product’s presence in social media. Google rank will also depend on how many links are seen via Twitter, Facebook, and other websites that rely on a large, connected network. Website managers and developers need to envision how their content will work under such a setting.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Possible Google Update February 18 2013 After Decreased Web Traffic

In talking with many webmasters, checking rankings, and traffic we have seen many changes since February 18, 2013.
Traffic has been rather odd this month with many websites having lower traffic than in January. This may have been due to recent Google panda updates. However, since yesterday traffic has been increasing and has increased even more today.
Search engine rankings have changed quite a bit from the past two weeks, which would definitely have an affect on traffic.
I talked to many webmasters and internet marketers this week to investigate how their traffic was in the month of February. They all said traffic was down until yesterday.
In talking with one of my clients today, they sent me an email around 5 p.m. stating that, “Thought you might like to know that today’s new apps were even better than yesterday… best since 1/24/13. Maybe Google’s made some changes.” Yesterday they reported that they received the most new apps in the entire month. And they got even more today, beating yesterdays numbers.
Google Update February 18 2013
Something definitely happened as even Mozcast is reporting higher numbers than usual for February 18, 2013. Mozcast reported a temperature of 78 degrees and whenever the temperature reaches past 75 there is usually an update occurring or something big happening.

What have you seen with traffic and search results for your own websites?

“Links to Your Site” count increased in Google Webmaster Tools on 12 February 2013 !!

On 12th February while checking up the GWT account we noticed that Google Webmaster Tools displayed a hike in the number of links to your site Section.
After a series of updates so far now I guess Google is trying to resolve the possible bug because of which, a huge number of links got disappeared and many of webmasters including me started worrying about the drastic fall in number of links.
But now it seems like they are on the track to resolve the issue. But on the other part the “Links to Your Site” section is still not showing up the actual results as the number of links that already removed by webmasters are also there in the list. So can we assume that the bug still exists ??
Looking at the list the links to Main Domain are also listed so I guess this was surely a bug and we had started to assume that the domains now onwards will not be considered for links and just for Branding. I hope that was a wrong assumption. thank god we didn’t started to work on the new strategy and decided to wait and watch for sometime.
At then end we hope that the actual count will be updated and we will get results of all of the efforts applied so far before the bug encountered. Keeping Fingers Crossed !!
Please share your views on the same readers !!

All latest Google SEO updates of 2013 – Check recent updated news

A new year 2013 has been started and all of Webmasters and promoters going to wonder what blenders they are going to see in SEO world in year 2013. Whats the latest Google SEO changes and News for 2013 related to SEO, which usually affects SEO & Search results with each SEO update. The days go and each day we saw something new happening and updating in SEO.  Google updates its algorithms on regularly bases now as Google confirmed that they will be doing almost 500 updates yearly in their system and we just keep curious to know what all latest Google SEO updates of 2013 going to take place and how they are going to affect their years of SEO work on websites. The time Google SEO update news come in market and we just keep searching for the affect or benefit of these latest SEO updates on our websites. On this page we are going to share each update either its Google Algorithm Update 2013, Google Panda Update 2013, Google Penguin Update 2013, Google Page Rank Update 2013 or Google SEO Update for 2013.  So lets start to check what all recent seo updates has took place till now in 2013.
Update 1 on 17 January 2013 – Google Algorithm Update :
The first Google update of 2013 we have seen on 17th January 2013 when suddenly all SEO results has been changed and it was confirmed that their was a Google Algorithm update has took place. But Google officially denied that their was no update from Google but according to Webmaster their was a Google Algorithm Update for sure.
Check this article for more details : Possibly Google Algorithm Update
Update 2 on 22 January 2013 – Google Panda Algorithm Update #24 :
Soon after the unofficial Google algorithm update which webmasters seen on 17 January 2013, Google has announced an official Google Panda Algorithm update on 22 January 2013. This was Google Panda update and affected low quality website. Officially this update has affected 1.2 search queries.
Check this article for more details: Officially Google Panda Update #24
Update 3 on 25 January 2013 – Google Page Rank Update :
The very first Google Page rank update of 2013 took place on 25 January 2013. According to webmasters this was a very minor Google pagerank update and change has been seen on fewer of websites only. Majorly this was assumed like this was a downgrade Google pagerank update only and it has affected only high page rank websites having more or less 4-5 page rank and a downfall in their page rank has been seen.
Check this article for  more details: Downgrade in Google Page Rank
Update 4 on 27 January 2013 -  Google Rolled Back Its Recent Google Algorithm Updates
SEO Webmasters has confirmed that they have seen a lot of signs that Google is rolling back its recent Google SEO algorithm updates which took place on 17 January 2013 and 22 January 2013. As we knew Google never says and disclose these kind of activities but the SEO affect of this has been seen.
Check this article for more details: Google Rolled Back Algorithm Updates
Update 5 on 30 January 2013 – Google Dance
SEO webmasters have seen that their was a Google dance going on soon after that latest Google SEO update happens on 22 January 2013. This was either a Google Dance or the google rolled back its algorithm update. But fluctuations of keywords in google search results keep moving and was not stable at all.
Check this article for more details: Google Dance
Update 6 on 4 February 2013 – Google Page Rank Update
Today On 4 February 2013 Google Toolbar Pagerank has been updated. This is a major page rank update of this year 2013. We have made predictions of this earlier and Google Page rank update has took place on exact time.
Check this article for more details: Google Page Rank Update February 2013
Update 7 on 12 February 2013 -  Signs of Google Algorithm Update May be Google Penguin
On 12 February, thousand of webmasters reported a downfall in their rankings. According to our observations and all feedback we received from SEO Executives and Webmasters, we have seen some strong chances that it was Google Penguin Update on 12 February 2013.
Check this article for more details: Google Penguin Update February 2013
These are all latest Google SEO updates of 2013 which we have seen till now. As Google is doing changes very frequently these days and we can expect a new Google SEO news daily :) So keep checking for recent and updated SEO news of 2013 or share if you have any other SEO Updates or SEO news for 2013.