5 Quick & Relatively Easy SEO Fixes for your WordPress site

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 I spend hours every day working on multiple sites in multiple industries and over the last year or so I’ve discovered the following potential issues when a site is not ranking on the SERP’s as expected. This is not a guarantee in any way that you will suddenly hit page 1 by making these changes but it does give you a bit of a head start while working on other concerns like quality, relevant content and building a loyal social media following.
  1. Are you Sandboxed?
    There is some debate out there about whether or not there is actually a Google Sandbox, I for one believe there is something out there in the Googlesphere that puts baby in the corner until it’s confident it will do no harm.
  2. Are  you up to speed?
    • The ideal speed is 400 milliseconds but that isn’t always realistic for the average business owner with a website on a shared hosting solution.  If you shoot for 3 seconds or less on page speed – check gtmetrix.com or https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/ it’ll improve your visitors overall experience and therefore the amount of time they spend on your site.
    • once you are done with all the design/content go get Wp smush-it or some sort of image compression plugin and reduce size of your images
    • go through all the plugins on the site and make sure you delete any you aren’t using – I sometimes will install plugins to try them out then forget to remove them when I make a decision.. so clear out all the unused plugins
    • minify your css and js
  3. Are you Mobile friendly?
    • https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly – check sites for mobile friendliness
    • https://developers.google.com/speed/docs/insights/ConfigureViewport – confirm that the mobile viewport is <meta name=viewport content=”width=device-width, initial-scale=1″>
    • avoid minimum-scale, maximum-scale, user-scalable in the viewport declaration (some of the WordPress themes actually have user-scalable in the viewport declaration so make sure to remove that) – it’s an accessibility issue and seems to make a difference on how mobile friendly Google thinks your site is…
  4. Too Many Plugins
  5. Submit that sitemap

Effective Solutions to In-House SEO, PPC and Campaigns

@LauraLippay (works @ Yahoo!)

2/3 of online search users are driven to perform searches as a result of exposure to some offline channel

$13 Million Hyundai Super Bowl Ad

Hot Trends in Google Search.

During the Super Bowl -‘edit your own” and ‘hyundai’ were “hot trends” – if you did a Google search for Edit your Own the ad nor Hyundai site showed up. Missed opportunity

We are still not connecting offline with online.

SEO as a marketing channel like Television, Direct Mail, Print, Internet, Radio, and Outdoor

SEO has rich web development background.

What can I do?

Integrating search into marketing campaigns. Hasn’t been able to find good examples of this integration. Some aspects of SEO and SEM has to connect with marketing.

Campaign strategy meetings – your SEO can tell you, if there is opportunity in search for this – there is no target market or there is opportunity.

Organic ranking for external advertising

Marketing

PPC <—-SEO Strategy

Engineering

Technical SEO

Agency

SEM needs to be recognized as an integrated marketing channel

SEO/M needs to be looped into campaign strategy meetings for clients

SEM can determine search marketing cost and opportunity

An SEO’s Tale @alli12
Allison Fabella

Launches a site, traffic goes up – Rock Star

Then traffic went down – not a Rock Star anymore

Common Offenders:

Flash

Good Solution: Speak Geek
Speak Money (competitors are getting organic search results)

Solutions: Include All Stakeholder in the discussion

Hit them in the wallet

Suggest Actionable Alternative

Robots.txt

Canonical Tags
Site Map (what can go wrong)
Incorrect Url
Incorrect sitemap protocol
Invalid date, tags, URL
Incorrect sitemap type in GWT

Be the detective

Solutions

Regular meetings with stakeholders:
-Daily or weekly
-Review upcoming & completed changes
-Carefully review code BEFORE launch

Topher Kohan

(does SEO for CNN & Turner Broadcasting)

Build evangelist

ID your support staff

Company
Division
Team

Outside:

Agencies
Contacts
Friends

Build a support network

Evangelize for SEO within the organization

They
Get it?
Wants to get it?
Gets excited by it?
Embraces it?

Find the Evangelist

Treat them as a Team
Conversations on what works and what doesn’t work

Never Stop:

Building them Up
Training Them
Improving the work flow
ID Problems
Getting help

 

Link value degradation

 

PubCon 2010 (LiveBlogging Intro)

November 9, 10 and 11 I will be LiveBlogging from the PubCon conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. PubCon is an Internet Marketing conference that features sessions led by industry experts in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), Pay Per Click (PPC), internet marketing and website operation. All of these topics are extremely interesting to me and are part of my daily responsibilities at my day job.

I live in Henderson and work in downtown Las Vegas so this isn’t an out-of-town “trip” for me. I’m really excited anyway. I’ll get to meet some of the SEO/SEM and Social Media bloggers whose informative posts I’ve read, printed and utilized in my job as Webmaster. My job involves both organic search engine optimization and ppc (as well as the usual webmastery stuff like coding and design)

That said there are the sessions I’m planning on attending (this could change depending on how fast I am and how fast the sessions fill up).

1. Hardcore PPC Tactics
2. The Best Tactics in Landing Page Optimization
3. Effective Solutions to In-House SEO, PPC and Campaigns
4.  Enterprise Level Bid Management
5. Top Shelf SEO: Hot Topics and Trends

 

1. Local Search and Mobile Optimization
2. Keyword Research, Selection and Optimization
3. Social Media, Press Relations & Brand Management
4. Super Session: Search Engines and Webmasters

1. Convergence of Online Marketing and Analytics
2. Real World Low-Risk High-Reward Link Building
3. SEO 2010
4. Interactive Site Reviews: Focus on Organic
5. Advanced PPC and other Paid Online Media Strategies

I’ll be blogging from my recently acquired pink Sony Vaio 🙂

Follow twitter.com/snowwrite for blog posting updates

Or facebook.com/snowwrite

Champions anyone?

As was mentioned in Chris’s post the end result of two days of brainstorming, synthesizing and story telling was the assignment of “champions” or “proxies” for getting our whittled down list of initial priorities “out of the gate”. Rather than an amorphous blob of “sure we’ll get to this…uhhh.. someday” we sat in our circle (and yeah.. we twinkled.. californian’s do twinkle) and started the most important hour of the entire weekend.

There is no way in h-e-double-toothpicks (my 10 yo might run across this on the web.. can’t be too careful) we could have addressed all the topics that came up during brainstorming, synthesizing (sticky dots.. basically a visible way to put +1 on each topic) and story telling. This was not a decision making exercise.. this weekend.. it was an “ok, look, we have a lot of issues out there.. let’s figure out our audience, pin down their needs and get started on the ones we can address in the near future.” At least that was my impression. No way we can possibly represent the entire community but there was an even amount of “consultants/integrators to developers” and one of the turning points.. “at least for me” was when Alec Mitchell pulled me into his work group today to discuss possible TTW content type creation and seemed sincere in wanting to disseminate what would be a dream situation for the integrator.

On Saturday, I had been invited to participate in an Integrator’s panel with the likes of SteveM (moderator), Matt Bowen, Jesse Snyder and David Glick (OneNW).

I was the veteran having started using Plone in 2001.. pre-1.0 actually.. we had used Silva previous to experimenting with Plone.

Although a veteran I managed to avoid learning how to program but I have implemented many Plone sites.  The learning curve for a non-programmer/designer/integrator was steep to begin with and then with the current changes (after I’d gone and learned how to create file system theme products) created a whole new set of things for me to learn.
I was a little miffed.. honestly.. and frankly being told.. just use paster..just use buildout only made me feel like I was on the outside looking in.. after all the years committed to learning best practices and I was finally doing it right (and then it changed? ouch)!

And so I sat there in front of everyone and I felt.. relief.. ok so now you guys know and you are listening. The best part? I’m not alone.. this is not me standing on a pulpit all by my lonesome, crying over the fact that I have to do a little work… there was a strong “theme” (sorry) amongst integrators/consultants that creating a Plone look & feel is hard.
Take a look at http://plone.org/products and you’ll note the lack of themes.

The ability to say, “hey we really love Plone, but let me tell you about our experience.. ” well it was powerful.. to say the least.

My overall “attitude” has changed since day 1 of this event. I walked away today with the following:

1. I committed to Champion(ing) the Integrator Story. Acting as a liaison of sorts, reporting back to integrators and getting a feel for the pain points (not just mine). What this means is I’ll be focusing on bringing in more Integrators like myself to participate in testing of pre-releases and provide feedback.  It tends to be the same people testing bugs and reporting back.. we need “real world” integrators to test with client sites (especially migration) and let the dev team know what breaks.. and what works really well.

2. I’ve committed to learning Plone 3 theming and quit whining (partly because of the 14 yo rock star that showed up on our last day and proved that maybe.. the fear of the unknown has rendered me frozen in 2.5 theming purgatory..although I do like the 2.5 way to theme at the moment) Granted I have to “unlearn” some things that I’ve gotten used to but I can live with that.

3. I’ve committed to start creating 2 minute screencasts for TTW customization..(thank you Nate Aune for your commitment to “teaching” us how to create screencasts)
I think my first one will be how to change the Plone logo TTW

4. I’ve committed to learning more about deliverance (it’s still got some way to go but it shows tremendous promise)

5. I’ve committed to learning how to play darts (killer) better so next time I’ll beat Mr Baekholdt (I almost won!)

Plone Strategic Planning Summit 2008 was a fantastic success and I’m looking forward to PSPS 2009!