How to Optimize Meta Description?


Writing a description of your blog post, landing page or web page content for search engines. The meta description of a web page is a behind the scenes summary of what your page is about. When you optimize your Meta description tag for a web page, click-through rates of your search results can improve. This is because the description Meta tag is often used by Google and other search engines in search results pages.

The Meta description is a short description of your online written piece. Think of it as a one or two sentence summary or abstract.

Visitors to your website don’t see the Meta description on the web pages they visit. The Meta description is placed in the head section of the HTML code behind the scenes using the format:

Tips to optimize your Meta description tag

1. Short and sweet

Keep the Meta description around 150 characters or so as search engines will ignore any text after that point.

How to Optimize Web Page Titles for Ranking?


One of the most overlooked aspects of web site quality is the proper use of web page titles. It’s important to give each page on a web site a unique, meaningful title to enhance the user’s experience as well as to provide good data for search engines. A page’s title is defined in its HTML title tag.

Where do visitors see web page titles?

  • In the title bar of the browser window and/or tab.
  • As a link on the top line of search results in a search engine.
  • As the default text when a page is bookmarked or marked as a favorite.
  • As the header on a printout of the page.

What are the common mistakes in web page titles?

  • Leaving all page titles set to the default title such as “Untitled Document.”
  • Using the same title, such as the company name, for all pages on a web site.
  • Using the web URL in the page title.
  • Packing the page title full of too many keywords.
  • Using misleading page titles that have nothing to do with the content of the page.

How to test website performance for business?


What is a website test plan? A website test plan is a written document that outlines detailed test cases. For a web site, the test cases are organized based on the pages of a site as well as by the main functions performed on the site.

For example, to test an e-commerce web site, the test plan may contain test cases to cover the following:

  • Navigating the web site
  • Searching for a product
  • Purchasing a product
  • Returning a product
  • Creating a customer account

There are many other areas that this test plan would cover such as printing pages from the site, testing input forms, and so on.

The test plan document also includes details about the test environment (browser, operating system, and configuration) as well as space for writing down the actual results of the test cases. These results can then be communicated to the site designer or programmer.

In a nutshell, the test plan is the overall organizing document for all testing that should be performed on the web site.

Mobile Website Design Tips


For mobile internet users, browsing the web can be a hit or miss affair — pages take forever to load, text is too small to read, or sites are impossible to navigate. This is mainly because most web sites are designed for desktop use. While the number of mobile internet users is still low, about 2% of all users, it is growing swiftly. In fact, during one month in 2008, the percentage of users browsing with an iPhone doubled.

So, how do you expand your market and reach the growing number of mobile users without compromising your main web site? The answer is to create a slimmed down mobile website design that provides basic information about your business, products, and services.

Why has mobile website?

  • To make it easier for mobile users to get information about your business.
  • So customers can contact you while they’re on the go.
  • To facilitate taking orders over the phone or through a simple web site form.
  • To point users to your main web site.

What are the main features of mobile websites?

  • Pages display on small screen sizes
  • Text-oriented with minimal graphics
  • Simple page layouts
  • Minimal or no animation
  • Limited or no use of third party plug-ins such as Flash or JavaScript

What basic information should a mobile web site contain?

  • Business logo, name, and description
  • Brief list of services and/or products
  • Contact information – phone, address, email
  • Hours of operation
  • Optional map to your location
  • Pointer to your main web site

In Mobile Web Site Design Part 2, look for ideas on how to design mobile web sites so that they work properly on different devices.

Here’s a few mobile web site examples listed along with their main sites. In your desktop browser, open the main site and the mobile site at the same time. Then switch between the sites to see the differences.

  • Main Site: http://www.mlb.com/
  • Mobile Site: http://wap.mlb.com/Yahoo!
  • Main Site: http://www.yahoo.com/
  • Mobile Site: http://m.yahoo.com/CNN
  • Main Site: http://www.cnn.com/
  • Mobile Site: http://m.cnn.com/

Quick Tip: See if your current web site is mobile ready. View it on an iPhone, BlackBerry, Palm, or other mobile device. Does the site load quickly? Can you navigate it? Can you see your business description and contact information?

Did you know?

Quality Web Site Testing can evaluate and test web sites on iPhone, Windows Mobile PDA, or on other platforms using device emulators. Also, if you don’t have a mobile web site yet, we can provide you with a road map for creating one. Please contact us at Quality Web Site Testing for your free consultation and estimate.

How to Convert Visitors Into Buyer With Landing Page?


Think about the web pages and sites you like the most when you get to them after searching the web through Google or Bing. Usually, they’re the ones that have all the information you need on one page. You don’t have to click around the website to find a contact number or pricing or product benefits. This type of web page is referred to as a targeted landing page as it makes it easy for the visitors to make a decision and take the next step.

What is a Landing Page?

A landing page is a page that people reach first through internet searches, online advertising, and pay-per-click ads. It’s often not the home page of a website, but actually a page that has the keywords on it that matches the search phrase used by the visitor.

You can use a website statistics package such as Google Analytics to identify the top landing pages of your website. You may be surprised that many people enter your website through pages other than the home page. These other landing pages are important as they identify what people visiting your website are most interested in.

Benefits of Targeted Landing Pages

  • Highlights a specific product or service that you want to sell.
  • Visitors get the information that they want all on one page.
  • Increases website traffic for specific search phrases.
  • Improves organic SEO rankings for your website.
  • Makes paid search and online banner advertising more effective, saving money in the long run.
  • Adds content to the website that visitors find valuable and that search engine spiders will index.
  • With Analytics, allows you to correlate website traffic with prospects, sales, and customers.

Creating Targeted Landing Pages

A targeted landing page is very specific in its purpose and content. If will focus on one product, service, or concept that you want to promote on your website. Use the following guidelines when creating landing pages:

  1. Choose the topic of the landing page – one product, one service, or one concept.
  2. Identify the page’s goal such as selling a product, getting a phone call for services, signing up for mailing list, completing a survey.

Research keywords using Wordtracker or the Google Adwords Keyword Tool. This step is very important as it tells you what real people are searching for on the internet related to your page topic. Keep in mind that what you call your product or service may not be what people searching on the internet call it.

SEO for Small Business 2017


SEO in 2017 is all about building an audience for your website and keeping in touch with them on all of their devices. If you’re a small business, you can use this website SEO checklist to get a head start on your yearly marketing plan.

A lot has changed in the past year or so with regards to how people search the web and use the internet. Tablets and Smartphone are now used more than desktop computers to search the web and research products online. So, having a website that is effective on mobile devices is increasingly important.

We’ve also changed how we search for information. We use voice commands, visual cues, and more intuitive search results. In 2013, Google revamped it search algorithm with the release of Google Hummingbird. This semantic search algorithm supports the new ways we are searching for information and provides the basis for future intuitive search features. You can read more about semantic search in my previous blog post: Semantic Search Myths Debunked.

Website SEO Checklist

Here are some items to consider with regards to your website search engine optimization and internet marketing. By tackling these items, your web presence and online audience will be in great shape in 2017. If you don’t have the resources to do everything, then do what you can. Every little bit you can do helps!

Audit your website for obvious errors

You only have a few seconds to get people’s attention once they get to your website. So, eliminating errors is important.

Here are some things to work on:

  • Test all internal and external website links
  • Check for misspelled words
  • Remove Flash and other older technologies not supported by mobile devices
  • Check information like pricing, special offers, and company information for correctness
  • Fix any issues as soon as you can.

Add images and videos to your website

Your web pages and blog posts should have a good mix of text and images on them. Media like YouTube videos also helps capture people’s attention. Many small business websites are very text oriented, especially B2B websites. If this is the case for you, then consider adding a relevant image or two to every page.

You can use images that you own or purchase stock images online. For stock images, check out Fotolia or iStockPhoto as two possible options. You may be violating copyright laws if you use images you find on other websites. So, this is not recommended.

Dofollow Backlinks Vs Nofollow Backlinks


Nofollow links are links that are given an attribute value in the HTML code that tells the search engines no to count these kinds of links towards ranking a given site. The code looks like the following:

SEO Blog Tips

These kinds of links were invented to try and fight blog spam comments. As webmasters and SEOs used to spam the hell out of blogs just to get links back to their site Google decided to make the nofollow to try and tackle this obstacle.

Each search engines has different rules for nofollow, some count the links, others only just follow the links to get to new pages/sites. Below is what the main search engines do:Google - follows nofollow links but simply does not pass on anchor text or page rank.Yahoo – follows nofollow links but simply does not pass on anchor text or page rank.

Bing- follows nofollow links but simply does not pass on anchor text or page rank.Ask.com – does not use nofollow links at all.

How to Spot Dofollow/Nofollow Links?

There is a Firefox add-on that tells you which links use the attribute. You can download the attribute HERE. The add on works like the following:Nofollow= Links are highlighted in redDofollow= Links are highlighted in blue. When you have the add-on installed, you can enable it by right clicking and pressing “NoDofollow.” Have a look above to see the Nofollow highlighted in red and the Dofollow highlighted in blue.

How to Index Your Website in Google Fast?


To get your website indexed by Google you could submit your site to their index: Submit site. This can get your site indexed if Google decides to, but it can take weeks and even months. Some websites offer services which they will submit your site to hundreds and even thousands of search engines, but this is unnecessary and is a waste of money as there is a way for search engines to come to you.

If you do feel the need to submit your site to the search engines then you can submit your site to the top 20 search for free: Submit your site.

What You Need to do First

You need to make sure your site is actually up and running, if your site is just a blank page, or it is still showing hosting ads your site will not get indexed. You need to make sure your site has some content on it. A few pages is better, but you can get indexed with just one page of content.

Get the Search Engines to Come to You

You may ask, “how is this possible?” Well, it is simple, you need to get backlinks to your site. Backlinks are websites that link to your site, just like the “submit site” link above. Below are a few sites that you can get dynamic links from and will improve your chances of your site getting indexed. Enter your URL on the following:Dynamic SitesAboutUs -Enter your URL in “Search” box, then press “search.”Alexa – Enter your URL in “Search Alexa,” then press “search,” then press “Get Details”Markosweb – Enter your URL in “Check Website”Quarkbase – Enter your URL in “Enter a website”CQcounter – Enter your URL in “Enter Domain Name:,” then press “search.”Cash81 – Enter your URL in “Calculate your website “Twitter

Go to: Twitter, create an account and then post a link back to your site, both in your account setting and on your wall once your account it up and running. You then need to start following people. This can be done by following “The Top 100” or by searching for people related to your site using Twitter’s Find option. Following people will give you a greater chance of people following you and is needed to get your twitter account indexed.

Add a picture to your twitter account and details about yourself to show people that you are a real person. People will follow you more if they can tell you are a real person.

Local Search Engine Guide 2017 - SEO


Getting your website on the local search in 2017 is turning out to be a blockbuster year for changes in the world of Local Search. As a small business SEO consultant, I admit it’s been a challenge to keep up with the announcements from Google which have been coming fast and furious since springtime.

For me, it means a few changes to the way I optimize the web presence for local small businesses. But for small business owners and the marketing companies that service them, it means being aware of the changes and positioning yourself to take advantage of them.

What is Local Search?

People use local search to find businesses online in their local community or while they’re on vacation. For example, you may search for a “chiropractor in wheaton illinois” or a “house painter in chicago.” These searches can be done on the main search engines like Google and Bing, on local search oriented sites like Dex Knows, or on maps applications on iPhones and iPads.

Online local searches are similar to looking up a business in the paper Yellow Pages.

Generally, in order to be found in local search and on the maps, your business needs to be listed in an online directory such as Google+ Local (formerly Google Places), Bing Business Portal, Yelp.com, etc.

Google has started migrating its Google Places content into Google+ Local. For now, you still log into Google Places to edit your Place listing. Your listing appears in Google Maps, but also in Google+ Local. In addition, your Google+ Local listing will show reviews from Zagat.com.

More changes are coming in the next few months. Receive updates from Google on changes to Google Places here.

Checklist for SEO Translation of Website


If you’re thinking about redesigning your website, don’t forget to include an SEO Transition Plan in your redesign project. If you skip this step, you risk losing the entire organic search and referring traffic that you’ve built up over the years that your current website has been operational.

An SEO transition plan doesn’t need to be complicated. It just needs to highlight the elements you want to preserve for SEO and identify how to do it. It can even suggest improvements to the existing web content that can enhance SEO.

What main SEO factors are affected when redesigning a website?

1. URL Structure

Your website content is stored in a folder or a database that assigns addresses and file names to web pages. If you change the path to a web page, then search engines and other websites won’t be able to find it anymore, resulting in broken links.

2. Web Page File Names

Same as with the URL structure. If you change the file name, the search engines and other websites might not see your content, resulting in broken links.

3. Page Titles

If your web page titles were optimized, then you need to consider if they should be retained or modified. Each web page should have a unique title containing keywords related to the content.SEO Meta Tags – The description and keywords meta tags are often overlooked and forgotten when redesigning.

4. Page Headings

Preserve any optimized H1 headings that you are using. Search engines consider these important.

5. Content

While it’s great to rewrite content for a new site, plan out what you are going to keep and what you are going to redo. Search engines index your content, too. So, if you have a page that ranks well in organic searches, you may want to retain that content.

6. Analytics code

If you are tracking web traffic, then you’ll want to preserve your tracking code on the new website. This will allow you to compare performance of the old vs. new website so that you can make adjustments in the future.

How to do SEO Audit?


Here are some basic tests you can perform yourself on your web site. For best results, run these tests on every page of your web site whenever changes are made. Take notes and share the results with your website designer.

If you just want to see how your website stacks up, then try these website testing tips on your home page. If you’re writing a website test plan, you can use these tests as a basis for some test cases

Check Web Page Titles

The page title shows in the title bar of your browser window, it’s usually is part of the header when you print out a web page, and it shows upon in search engine results. See our article for more information on optimizing web page titles.

For each page on the site, examine the page title for the following criteria :

  • The page title should be unique for the site.
  • The page title should contain the business name.
  • The page title should identify what is on the page being viewed.
  • The page title shouldn’t contain the web site URL address, unless the URL is also the business name.
  • The page title should be less than 65 characters.

Test Navigation and Links

For this step, you can use an automated link checker. To be thorough, you’ll want to systematically check every navigation, image link, and hyperlink on every page.

Keep in mind that links that work may refer to the wrong page. To test for this case, you need to examine where every link goes.

For every link on every page, note the following:

  • Link Type – image or text
  • Link Text or Image Alt Text for that link
  • Destination Page Title after link clicked
  • Destination Full URL after link clicked
  • Note if the link is broken
  • Note if the link goes to the wrong page
  • Note if the link text makes sense for the destination

Hint: After you click a link and note the results, use the browser’s back button to return to the original page.

Why getting the right traffic to your website is important?


There are a lot of misconceptions floating around about search engine optimization (SEO). Part of my job as a website optimizer is to educate prospects and clients on what works and what doesn’t.

The biggest problem I see is that people go for sheer volume of website traffic, mainly to the home page. They think that more traffic equals more customers, but that’s not necessarily true. This can work for you if the “right type” of people are visiting your site and your website has engaging content. By “right type,” I mean your potential customers.

Here’s an example, let’s say 1000 people visit your website every day, but 800 people exit your website right away for a bounce rate of 80%. Of the 200 people that stay, they view 2 pages for an average of 30 seconds each. Clearly, this website is not engaging its visitors. (In order to get these statistics, you need to use a website statistics package like the free Google Analytics application.)

When I evaluate a website, I look at statistics like in the above example. My initial optimization goals are to get the bounce rate fewer than 50% and visitors to view 3-5 pages per visit for an average of 3 minutes per visit. These may just be numbers to you, but the bottom line is to revise your website strategy to get the right type of traffic, engage the visitor, and get them to take action with the ultimate goal of turning them into a customer.

Improve website findability for your target audiences

Another common problem is that the findability of the website is low. What this means is only a few keyword phrases such as the business name and key service categories are used for SEO. In addition, I often analyze websites where no local geographic phrases (town, county, state) are used. So, search engines can only find the website through the business name and a few other limited phrases. Since the goal with web marketing is to find new prospects in your target area, these prospects probably won’t know your business name and thus won’t be able to find your website easily through a search engine.

SEO Through On Page Optimization



Another SEO tip is to use on page optimization. What this means is that the keyword or term shows up on your actual webpage or site page. An individual page will suffice for on page optimization. When a user does a search, they will be directed through the search engines to the column of links, and generally, each in the search results is to an individual page.

This isn’t always the case, as some results point to links to an actual home page. It is simpler to grasp when analyzing an individual page for on page optimization, for most often, each and every page of a site is not geared towards that exact keyword or keyword phrase, so with one single page, you can be more specific.

So ideally, you want to carry the keyword, or keyword phrase on the page that you are optimizing. There are general guidelines that you can research, even on Google, where they have a guide for webmasters. It will tell you to aim to have the keyword or keyword phrase in the title, in the beginning of the article, and towards the end.

Top 10 Black Hat SEO Techniques



I would firstly like to point out that I would not recommend any webmaster to use any black hat techniques on their site. Although some techniques may get you higher rankings, if you are found out by the search engines they will either penalize your site, or worse, ban your site completely from ever showing up at all in their search engines.

What is Black Hat

Black hat are techniques that are used to help boost your rankings that the search engines do not like. There are many black hat techniques that people do and I will go over some below.

Keyword stuffing

The Keyword Meta tag used to be a high ranking factor years ago but SEOs used to abuse them to gain higher rankings. Keyword stuffing is repeating a lot of keywords, both on your page and in your meta titles to try and achieve better rankings.

As the search engines look at a sites content to see if that site is relevant for a given keyterm/phrase they look to see if that word(s) is/are mentioned on that page. If a page mentions “dog collars” a lot then it must be relevant for that term.

Hidden Text

This technique was also bigger years ago more than it is today, it can also be linked with keyword stuffing. As people do not want sites with over used keyterm people sometimes put their keyterms hidden on their page so you are unable to see them but the search engines can, this techniques is used to try and trick both you and the search engines.

Hidden text is hidden by either making the text the same color as the background or setting the font size to 0. Hidden text is usually used at a bottom of a page on a white background. Hidden text however does show up on the page source and search engines are easily able to detect hidden text now.

Link Farms

Link farms are just websites with loads of random links on them and serve no informational purpose at all, they are used to try and boost rankings.

Bad Neighbourhood Sites

Linking to a bad neighbourhood site typically with a reciprocal link can hurt your ranks, what bad neighbourhood means is, if a site is doing something that Google does not like and you link to them Google may think that you are involved or you would have not linked to them.

Top 5 basic SEO tips



Search engine rankings are an important factor to consider when building or developing a website, as well as the use of links, keywords and content. The need to use such information is to ensure the site achieves high rankings, for example, a good selection of links and the more links you have related to your site equals more traffic, plus, search engines are more likely to like the site.

Many larger corporations and anyone who can afford to use SEO companies and/or multilingual SEO organizations are there to improve or enhance your site in order to gain better search rankings; however there is no guarantee that an SEO company will improve your site rankings. Search engines tend to keep you in the best position for your site, and unless you suddenly produce the best possible site there is a limited possibility that you will drop your position.

What is Google Panda in simple terms?



I’ve seen quite a few forums recently where people are asking what is Google Panda, so I thought it would be interesting to try and answer that question as best as I can on here. Essentially, Google Panda is a change to the Google algorithm (which calculates the search engine rankings) but as that probably sounds like gobbledeegook to a non-technical person, so I am going to try and explain it in non-technical terms.

It is probably best to start by giving some background information on how Google works roughly, in terms of how it decides which websites to put at the top of its search engine results, and which websites to relegate to page 10.

So how does the Google search engine work?

When you put some keywords into the Google search engine, Google then has to decide which websites are relevant to your search, essentially Google takes into account numerous factors about a website in order to understand how relevant it is to what you are searching for. The factors may include things like how old the post or website is, how many other sites have linked to it, whether the title and body of the post contains the keywords mentioned in the search query etc. To weigh up all these factors and decide which website posts are the most relevant to the words that you put into the search engine, Google uses a very complicated mathematical equation known as the Google algorithm.

If the algorithm is adjusted in any way, it will affect the order that websites and posts appear in the search engine results. For instance, if Google alter the algorithm so that the age of a website is given more importance, websites that are older will appear higher up in the search engine results. ‘Google Panda’ is just a nickname for a major adjustment to the Google algorithm. The term “Panda” comes from Navneet Panda, an engineer who works at Google.

How to write a perfect headline with perfect length?



This week the BBC announced that they are publishing two versions of their headlines – one for search engines and the other for readers.

This highlights how publishing has moved on and answers the question; “What is the perfect headline?” Answer: “You need two of them to cover all bases.

Back in the day, headline writers were mostly bothered about space – and they still are if they are working on print publications.

Punchy, snappy, short – this is the style that most of the memorable newspaper headlines adopted. Take the Sun front page headline on the sinking of the Belgrano: GOTCHA! Its boldness made it famous, but it would have baffled the search engines.

One of my favourite headlines of all time is from a report on an expected victory by Inverness Caledonian over Celtic: Super Cally Go Balistic Celtic Are Atrocious - it’s perfect…as a memorable headline, but less so as an search engine-friendly title.

Title tags are incredibly important to search engines, but they aren’t the only important part of the story as the keywords (and repetitions of) in the main body, category of news, tags, alt tags, links in etc. all play their part in the search engines reaching an understanding of the content. Or not – see examples of Google News screw-ups.

So, unless you have a content management system that can deal with dual headlines, you’re best to aim for a couple of these options per headline.

Straight-forward, factual – using well-rehearsed keywords. Thus, the Sun’s Gotcha would be “Falklands War: Controversy over sinking of Belgrano”.

Be bold and controversial, but keep some keywords in. “Bloggers revolt over scandalous Belgrano sinking”

Think, to hell with the search engines – and go with puns!

Top 10 Twitter Marketing Tips



Twitter is one of the biggest and most successful social networking sites on the internet today. But as well as a fun way to connect with friends and family, many individuals, businesses, groups and organizations have realized that they can get their message out in to a wide but targeted audience by using Twitter as a marketing tool. Whether they are marketing a product, person, brand, event, organization, or company, they gain from Twitter marketing. Here are my Top 10 Good Reasons for using Twitter as a Marketing Tool.

1. It is free. There are no starts up costs, rental costs, or maintenance costs. Of course, using Twitter as a Marketing tool will use up some of your time, especially when you are getting it going, but once set up, Twitter marketing can require only short bursts of work (10 or fifteen minutes per day) to keep everything flowing smoothly.

2. Twitter marketing is versatile; you can use it to promote a product, blog, website, person, event, group… pretty much anything really, although it generally works best if you stick to one niche, person, product, subject or thing for each Twitter account.

3. Twitter accounts are easy to set up and maintain, so you can have multiple accounts to reflect different blogs, businesses and websites etc. For instance, if you have more than one blog or business, you can run a Twitter account for each blog or business that you have. That way you can keep both your Twitter marketing focused and your Twitter followers effectively targeted.

4. Twitter is fashionable with a huge following from young people especially. By using Twitter as a marketing tool you can reach lots of groups, such as young people, who might be difficult or expensive to reach by more traditional marketing methods. Twitter marketing also shows that your company or organization is up to date and has a modern outlook when it comes to marketing methods and approach.

5. By using Twitter as a marketing tool, you can also forge and keep direct contacts with your customers and readers, providing you with precious feedback that can help you identify areas where you are lacking and help to define where you might want to take yourself or your organization in the future. Customers might suggest new products that you might want to stock, for instance, or topics that you might want to cover, if you are a blog or a news site.