Sunday, March 3, 2013

Never exploit search engine loopholes

Many people in my industry were hit hard by the penguin and panda updates. They found that the updates not only nullified prior search engine optimization efforts, but in many cases saw their rankings drop to all time lows.

Ethical marketing is important in all aspects of business marketing, but is probably most important in SEO and email marketing.

Both SEO and email marketing have had major algorithmic changed making it imperative that you follow honest business practices to succeed. It’s odd that we live in a time where these ethics must be explained in order for one to understand what the ethical practice is.

In search engine optimization and back linking the number one rule is to never exploit a loophole. Search engines have been viewing this as kicking them when they’re down. A search engine is in the business of providing the best results for a visitor. When you exploit a loophole in the search engines algorithms you are directly messing with their business. When the search engines discover that you have exploited them they are likely to blacklist you. We know this because we have seen it in the past. In fact a large part of both the penguin and panda updated were to close up exploited loopholes, thus so many optimization companies going under.

As I often say your best bet is to chase what the search engines are chasing. Search engines want to deliver high quality search results from high quality sites and businesses. You best bet for showing up is to create that high quality site that they are looking for. This way you and your site will always be relevant and valuable to the search engines results.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What is Ethical Marketing?

Marketing ethically is when you take responsibly for your marketing and advertising message.

Sharing a message via media, be it TV, radio, the web etc, is being in control of a lot of potential power. Doing so you have the option to hurt or help people and businesses. As marketers it is our job to help people find what they want and need, not to tell them what they want and need.

There are two major concepts to Ethical Marketing. Firstly, we must work with in a business’s or website’s TOS (terms of service). Taking advantage of loopholes or purposely bending the rules can hurt a business or company. You have been given control of a business or company’s reputation. I can assume that you do not want to be responsible for damage to a business’s reputation. Plus surviving negative publicity can be very expensive and it is much less expensive in the long run to not constantly be running damage control.

Breaking TOS can also leave you in a situation where your prior SEO efforts are no longer helping you… they are now hurting you. We saw many sites and businesses adversely affected in the organic search results by the Penguin and Panda updates.

The second concept is responsibility and accountability. As a marketer it is our responsibility to covey the truth. This does not mean that crafting a better message or finding the right demographic is out. It really just means that it is our responsibility to convey the truth. We should set standards and not slide below them for any reason. Lying or misrepresenting a product or a business can hurt a company’s reputation as well as heavily damage your own marketing business’s reputations. Always remember that you have a responsibility to the world in which you live and it is your job to help maintain the quality of that world.

I know many do not agree with my views of Ethical Marketing. I feel we would all be happier and healthier if we did. I am in no way perfect and do not expect anybody else to be perfect, but we can always try to be better people and better businessmen/women. Our spouses will thank us, our families will thank us, our clients will thank us, and the world will take notice of your effects and reward you with success.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Optimize Tumblr with Dynamic Meta Keywords

Tumblr Theme Optimization Tip

Tumblr is a great micro blogging platform, for both ease of use and SEO. Out of the box, however, does not provide all the necessary SEO tags and labels that we need for good on page optimization.

One area that is lacking out of the box is Meta Keywords. This is not a hassle for us though because Tumblr has made it very easy for us to alter our chosen theme.
Open your theme editor and click “Edit HTML”. Look for the Meta Description tag at the top of your template. Mine looks like this:

We are going to copy that line and paste is right under it. In our new line change name=”description” to name=”keywords”. Now in the new line where it says {MetaDescription} replace it with:

{block:Permalink}{block:Posts}{block:Tags}{Tag}, {/block:Tags}{/block:Posts}{/block:Permalink}.

Click “Update Preview” and then click “Save”.

You can double check by going to a Tumblr post (not the home page) and clicking CTL+U. This will open the source code where we can see our new keywords at the top of the header code.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Get The Point Across With a Quality H1 Tag

Help Search Engines Understand Your Webpage

It’s certainly true that a page can rank high in search engines and have no structural tags in them at all. But chances are that this is because those pages are already very popular and have a lot of backlinks to them that get them a better rating. As a Web designer you can choose to ignore structural tags altogether and focus only on backlinks. But why? H1, H2, and H3 headlines are easy to add to your pages, and with CSS they don't have any detriments. And since they help search engines categorize your pages more efficiently, you'll rank higher in search engines and thus get backlinks more quickly.

If you think of a Web page as an outline, the H1, H2, etc. heading tags serve to divide the page into sections. Your most important headline is your H1 headline. This generally indicates the topic for the entire Web page and is where most people look first when they're trying to figure out what the page is about. Since search engines first priority is to provide search results that people want, they try to use the same techniques to determine what a page is about. So content in the H1 tag will be considered most important and given a slightly higher rank than other content on the page.

The H1 is a great place to optimize your webpage for a specific key phrase. Be sure that your H1 contains the key phrase that you are targeting… preferably at the beginning of the H1. Search engines will immediately know what your page is all about.

When pages are constructed in a hierarchical fashion with the proper use of H1 and H2 tags you create a page that is easy for both people and search engines to follow. And after all… isn’t that the ideal goal of almost any webpage? Pages that have been structured in a hierarchical fashion will score better in the search results.

Many people like to use images instead of H1 tags for their headlines. This is not accessible so search engine robots can't read the text in the image. So you get a double-negative. The robots can't read the headline and there's no structure. If you must use images for your headlines, consider using some form of image replacement or wrap you H1 is a display=none div so that you can still use H1 tags.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Ethical Marketing Can Be Difficult

Many Do Not Believe

The problem with ethical marketing is that most businesses are not interested. They either have thought about it and don’t care or they never really thought about it in the first place.

Same goes for my wife’s eco friendly house keeping. People either think she costs more or they think she can't clean as well... and believe me she can.

I believe the panda and penguin updates taught us that the unethical practices of previous marketers can heavily affect or current advertising situations and search rankings. I still  practice ethical marketing with my company Archaic Media and always will.