Mar 19 2013

Video: How To Fix 404 Errors (Page Not Found)

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Identify broken links in your site: Continue reading “Video: How To Fix 404 Errors (Page Not Found)”

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Mar 12 2013

Is Google Considered Evil?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

An interview with Joe Youngblood of WrightIMC

Continue reading “Is Google Considered Evil?”

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Feb 26 2013

7 Ways You Create Your Own Duplicate Content Problem

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Duplicate content isn’t just caused by content stop-the-pressscrapers. Content scrapers do create issues with your own content, but what happens more frequently is that webmasters generate their own duplicate content issue without realizing it. If you’re still doing clean-up on your site because each Google Panda update inflicts more pain, be sure to review the common duplicate content causes and rid your website of these issues.

The Unlucky 7

Continue reading “7 Ways You Create Your Own Duplicate Content Problem”

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Dec 11 2012

Everyone Knows SEO Status Quo

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

It seems like most people I talk to now “know SEO.”

Sometimes people want to pay me to do a SEO task for them, but I have a problem taking their money because I know it won’t make the difference.

Quite often people who have experienced success with SEO in the past, now want to do the same things that worked before. The assumptions go like this: Continue reading “Everyone Knows SEO Status Quo”

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Nov 11 2012

Six Trust Indicators That Google Sniffs Out

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Google has some degree of trust or distrust of the sites it crawls, and Google’s degree of trust with a site can go up (highly credible) or down (spam site) based on the factors revealed here.

Exact match domain names

Continue reading “Six Trust Indicators That Google Sniffs Out”

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Oct 15 2012

Top Problem For Businesses New To SEO: Conversion

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

This is a classic issue that can come up for newcomers to SEO and most don’t know what they should be asking before engaging.

The basic assumption from people new to this space goes something like this: “Yeah, we’ve never done this before but we have to now, so tell us about your pricing.”

Continue reading “Top Problem For Businesses New To SEO: Conversion”

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Sep 10 2012

SEO Checklist – Tom Shivers Interview

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Jeff Beale interviewed Tom Shivers recently and had a lively discussion about SEO…

What are the common SEO mistakes you see?

Continue reading “SEO Checklist – Tom Shivers Interview”

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Aug 27 2012

Video: Which One WWW or non-WWW Is Best For My Domain?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

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Search engines distinguish these as separate domains which can create duplicate content issues for your site – you don’t want that…

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Aug 06 2012

How User Experience Impacts Search Rank (SEO)

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

At the end of this post I’ll share a link to download the User Experience Checklist for SEO & Conversion to help you evaluate your website and landing pages.

Businesses can get into trouble when they do not balance user experience and SEO or SEO and conversion. Some businesses put too much weight on search rank for their keywords or too much emphasis on social media, overlooking on site SEO and user experience. You can’t do that today and expect good search rank from Google. Instead you must balance out the focus between user experience and SEO so that your target audience not only finds your site but it is useful and even excites them.

Continue reading “How User Experience Impacts Search Rank (SEO)”

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Jun 11 2012

Why Should I Invest in SEO, What ROI Can I Expect?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Recently a colleague of mine who provides virtual CIO services sent me some intriguing questions about how he handles or screens SEO partners.

"Why should I invest in SEO, and what ROI can I expect if I invest with Capture Commerce?"

Continue reading “Why Should I Invest in SEO, What ROI Can I Expect?”

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May 14 2012

The Five Most Common Canonical Tag Errors

Category: organic seoGuest Author

The canonical tag was one of the handiest developments in SEO in a long time. It’s thanks to this useful piece of information in the header of our websites that we can essentially eliminate any duplication that might be occurring without needing to go through the development teams to get 301 redirects handled (how many times does it turn out to be a 302?). Unfortunately, as with all things, there’s a lot that can go wrong with them, especially if the people putting them in aren’t quite sure what they’re doing.

If you’ve been in the game for a while, you’ve probably seen some shockingly bad implementations of them. I know I have. Today, I’m going to talk through a few of them.

Continue reading “The Five Most Common Canonical Tag Errors”

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May 07 2012

What The Heck Is Penguin?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Google launched the latest algo change named Penguin on April 24th and gave plenty of warning about it. At the South by Southwest (SBSX) conference in March, Matt Cutts mentioned an algo update they were working on to better deal with sites that have been “over optimized.”

Most people complain about Google’s algo updates, but consider that the same percentage of sites that moved down also moved up; can I hear somebody say – “ain’t that sweet!”

Continue reading “What The Heck Is Penguin?”

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Apr 24 2012

5 Steps To Agile SEO

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Most businesses treat SEO like a one time project – get everyone on board, do it and then it’s done, right? But…

  • Competitors for your search terms are willing to execute SEO until they outrank your site, pushing your site down in search rank
  • Search engines change regularly and new features come along which can benefit search listings and user experience
  • Missed opportunities abound when no one is skillfully monitoring keywords, landing pages and conversions

Continue reading “5 Steps To Agile SEO”

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Apr 09 2012

Are You a Victim of SEO Trends?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

Hey, did you hear about this SEO trick?

  • Adding a bunch of links to the bottom of the home page
  • Acquiring a large number of social bookmarking links, directory listings, article directory submissions, etc. in a few weeks
  • Creating duplicate sites to get a keyword in the domain name
  • Using hellotxt, onlywire, etc. to broadcast your link through social media
  • Paying someone on fiverr to do a SEO or link building task
  • Paying someone to comment on your blog and/or other blogs
  • Paying to acquire lots of links relatively quickly
  • Dabbling with keyword density
  • Trying to fit as many keywords as possible into a web page
  • Using automated link distribution networks

These are some examples of “SEO tricks” people used in the past with varying degrees of success, but today use them and you may be another victim of SEO trends.

Continue reading “Are You a Victim of SEO Trends?”

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Jan 30 2012

Google Algorithm Changes to Expect In 2012

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

An interview with Chris Burns of SERPd

Google is expected to rely less on backlinks as a way to determine the value of websites. This seems to be the theme of most of the changes we are seeing with Google’s algorithm with respect to SEO.

Continue reading “Google Algorithm Changes to Expect In 2012”

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Jan 25 2012

Does SEO Trump Conversion?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

There are instances when SEO is not the best solution as a traffic source, the squeeze page is one of them. Here’s a good example of a question I’ve seen in marketing forums a number of times…

Q: “I understand that SEO is content and backlinks and all that mumbo jumbo. Now normally I’d think you’d stick your squeeze page out there and SEO that, but with that there’s no real content so no real SEO. The other issue I have is that I went and wrote some articles a while back and when I really changed to what’s working for me now, none of the directories will except my new squeeze page as its very small and has about zip content (but has been converting the best for me). So do I need to completely reconstruct everything I”m doing to get started with SEO or is there something I’m just not getting about what pages need SEO and what pages can get subscribers?”

Continue reading “Does SEO Trump Conversion?”

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Jan 03 2012

Does SEO Support Marketing or Does Marketing Support SEO?

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

It’s interesting how many businesses act like Does your marketing make the mark?SEO is in a different department than marketing… “oh that’s IT.” This is a real problem for people who implement SEO because the expectation is often: “go do your technical thing to get our site ranking but don’t expect any help from us, that’s your job.”

This kind of thinking might have worked out fine a few years ago but today the search engines treat sites that don’t engage as not so useful – and that impacts search rank. “But it’s just a program, how could it know what’s engaging or not?” Oh my friend, the algorithm is a program, but don’t be naïve, that’s not all search engines have at their disposal to evaluate and rank sites today.

Continue reading “Does SEO Support Marketing or Does Marketing Support SEO?”

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Nov 21 2011

Google’s Quality Raters Are Looking At Your Site

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

People hear about the algorithm so much they don’t realize the other side of Google’s ranking matrix – human raters.

A few years ago, conversion optimizers wondered whether their work to improve a landing page’s conversion rate also influenced search rank. Well, today it most likely does because of human raters.

Continue reading “Google’s Quality Raters Are Looking At Your Site”

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Oct 10 2011

Top SEO Skills for Today and Beyond

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

This article is intended for SEOs who want to stay fresh, but others may find it useful as well:

  • Companies hiring for a web project
  • SEOs on the job hunt
  • Businesses who want to do better with SEO

Continue reading “Top SEO Skills for Today and Beyond”

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Oct 03 2011

Search Rank Factors: Page Level Keyword Features

Category: organic seoTom Shivers

SEOmoz’s 2011 Search Engine Ranking Factors offers some interesting details about Google’s current algorithm as it relates to individual page features and their correlation to search rank based on 10,000+ pages they tested earlier this year.

The correlation chart below outlines how features on a page tend to relate to higher rankings on a scale from 0 to 1. There are also negative correlations which means the more the particular feature showed up on a page, it tends to relate to lower rankings. But, remember these are correlations, not causes and based on a test of 10,000 pages. So, don’t run off and change your site just because you see something here that correlates to higher or lower rank, but do consider it especially in light of the Panda updates.

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