Posts Tagged ‘Bing’

Apr
20

How to Optimize Your Brand’s Facebook Page For Search Engines

For this Wednesdays article I am giving you a great article I found on ReadWriteWeb.com about SEO for your company’s Facebook page. As we all may have noticed now, social media is becoming more popular and also more so integrated into everyday life. Backlinks can be an important part of SEO but they have to be relevant and useful. When you are linking to your site’s content within Facebook status updates, it should be noted, does not help your SEO directly, since these links include the  “nofollow” attribute, they do not count for search ranking purposes. However the links do create more relevant traffic.

Read the original article at http://www.readwriteweb.com/biz/2011/04/optimize-your-brands-facebook-page-for-search-engines.php

So your company has mastered search engine optimization (SEO) for the brand’s main Website and established a killer social media strategy, both of which are driving hordes of traffic and new business. Way to go. Both are critical to your company’s success online, but have you connected these two very important dots?

If you’re like most major companies, your brand’s Facebook page doesn’t even appear in the first 20 search results for your company on Google, even if your Website does. This is apparently the case for more than 70% of major brands, according to a recent study conducted by SEO services firm BrightEdge.

This is a huge missed opportunity. Although social media may not yet be a significant direct source of revenue, the type of customer engagement it provides is unparalleled. You want people to find your Facebook page and, if appropriate, hit the “Like” button, essentially subscribing themselves to updates and enabling you to keep in touch with them in a way that your Website can’t easily achieve on its own.

Fortunately, optimizing one’s Facebook page for search is pretty simple, and doesn’t require some of the under-the-hood tinkering that standard Website SEO does.

facebook-page-biz-info1.jpg

Snag That Vanity URL

Facebook offers brands the opportunity to set up a custom URL (or “username”), which can not only make advertising and word-of-mouth marketing easier (“Check us out at Facebook.com/companyname.”), but also plays a crucial role in SEO.

If you haven’t yet claimed your company’s vanity Facebook URL (you’ll need at least 25 “likes” to be eligible), hop to it. In general, you should go with your company’s name, sticking as close to the original brand as possible.

It’s worth noting that Facebook doesn’t allow dashes or underscore in the vanity URL, so this limits the amount of typical URL keyword trickery you can do. This username cannot be changed, so choose it carefully.

Pay Attention to Your Company’s Name

It may seem obvious, but the name you use in your brand’s Facebook page is really important. Again, sticking to the original brand is important here, as it will help people find you not only via search engines, but on Facebook itself.

You have a little bit of leeway to include keywords in this field but don’t stray too far from the company’s actual name. Don’t worry, there will be other opportunities to get those keywords in.

facebook-page-biz-info2.jpg

Fill Out the Company Information, Keywords and All

Facebook gives you three fields to describe your business from a high level: About, Description and General Information. Use them all.

As its smaller size would suggest, the About field is for a shorter, one or two-sentence tagline about your business. Description and General Information give you more space to describe, in concise detail, what the company does. This is an ideal place to include as many relevant keywords as you can.

The more fields under the “Information” tab you can fill out, the better. This will help people find your brand no matter where they’re searching.

Link to It

Let’s not forget that at the heart of Google’s PageRank algorithm still lies the hyperlink. Link to your Facebook page from your main Website and at any other (appropriate) opportunity that arises.

Linking back to your site’s content within Facebook status updates, it should be noted, does not help your SEO directly, since these links include the  “nofollow” attribute, and thus they do not count for search ranking purposes. That said, these links can be a huge source of traffic back to your brand’s site.

Apr
18

Which SEM advertising platform is good for you?

Picking the search engine you want to advertise on is often a very difficult choice. Most people will pick by personal preference or by knowledge of current traffic share the search engine holds. Google generally being the most popular. I found after working for a search engine (which I will not name) that most advertisers won’t take into consideration the content networks behind the search engine they’ve chosen. For example the websites I recognize at first glance in the Google platform are:

Some of these sites may not be the best choice for you however the traffic from Google.com may suffice for you and your business; given the fact that there are 3 Google products in the top 5 most visited sites on the internet Google.com being number one. If you are looking for a specific audience then you may want to look into content advertising. This requires very relevant ads, which means you should have an SEO expert hired. I know from personal experience that the advertisements on the Bing.com content ads system require the utmost relevancy. Some people may be weary of the Microsoft adCenter platform because of the lower share in search engine traffic. Keep in mind that it is a fair playing field and each platform has its pros and cons. The adCenter platform serves ads for the Yahoo search engine as well because of an agreement that was made years ago.

Microsoft also paid $240M for a 1.6% share in Facebook which allows them to sell internet ads for Facebook outside the United States as part of the deal. Bing search also provides all search results on Facebook.com as well, apart from this fact they have quite a reputable content network as well which includes:

View the Microsoft Content Network

You may also find these article of interest:

Rumors of Microsoft purchasing Adobe
Adobe purchase of Omniture (Formerly owned by Yahoo)
Yahoo-Microsoft Search Deal: The Key Facts
Microsoft buys stake in Facebook
List of acquisitions by Google
Alexa Top 500 Sites on the Web

My intention in this brief article is to have no bias, and hope that all the information provided can help you choose the right advertising tactics for your business. If you have any questions please feel free to email me at my website. Here are the links to the advertising platforms discussed in this article:

Google AdWords

Microsoft adCenter

Apr
08

The difference between SEM and SEO

In the recent past I have run into many encounters where I will offer my SEM services and they will respond to me with questions about my “SEO” services. I personally don’t do SEO, but I do SEM and web design (You can see my site here). For all my SEO needs I go to Cyber Stampede! This lack of understanding the two terms generally causes a lot of frustration on both sides which is unnecessary; this article will hopefully clear up some of that confusion.

To most people SEO and SEM are synonymous or they feel the terms are interchangeable, this is not the case. The key to understanding the difference is knowing the difference between paid and organic listings. Paid listings are seen at the top and right hand side of the main results (3 on top, 5 on the right), the main results are everything else. SEO pertains to organic listings which are the most important because these results are based solely on relevancy as where paid listings (SEM) can shoot to the top with a fat wallet. Sometimes this is not the case, ads that are placed that have high relevancy will sometimes appear in a higher ranked spot because of their relevancy to the keywords they are targeting. If this sounds unfair to those who want to pay their way to the top; in all fairness advertisers want to show the most relevant ads to gain the highest revenue.

That being said you are probably beginning to see where SEO and SEM are similar, but not the same. SEO is actually integral to SEM, but can exist without SEM, in the long run SEM would fail without adequate SEO. Good SEO can save you money, and make you money if it is done right, and will also increase conversion rates (The ratio of customers that visit to the amount that actually make a purchase, or reach the goal point you’ve set). SEO is so important that some SEM ads will actually be rejected because of poor relevancy due to poor or lack of SEO.  As the definition below states ” Personally, I would start with SEO and then move onto SEM.”.  Here is a quick and easily understandable definition I found on another blog:

“SEO is the act of optimizing the HTML and other content of your website for relevant, targeted key phrases in order to attain higher natural listings than competing websites. SEO provides a cheaper long term solution for increased qualified traffic and generates customer inquiries that ultimately convert to sales. Now SEM is broader than SEO. It includes SEO and other areas to improve a sites visibility in search engine results pages, like paid listings and paid inclusions. You can think of SEM as more expensive and quite possibly more targeted, while SEO is free (not counting your time of course) and its purpose is to obtain better free search listings. Personally, I would start with SEO and then move onto SEM.” PageStrength.com

Be sure to come back on Monday!

Apr
06

The Importance of Search Engine Optimization

Most businesses today have the understanding that online importance is important; however it seems that the effort stops at the point they get online. The online presence is there, but with no organized method you’re just a small being in the large world of the internet. Generally most people have way too much faith in technology and expect to do something once and have it succeed amazingly with no effort. When it comes to designing a website with purpose and power there are a few very important factors:

  • The obvious first would be design which comes down to visual appeal and user friendliness.
  • Frequency of updated material.
  • Backlinks (Sites that link to your site) on relevant sites to yours.
  • The relevancy of your material to what your demographic is looking for. (Most shoppers do their research online first.) Wall Street Journal
  • Most important of all you want the search engines to understand what you have on your site, where to find it, and what to look for.

“More than half the businesses who responded to a Small Business Search Marking Survey by American Express and SEMPO said they needed help with their campaigns, yet only 25 per cent said they would employ anyone to assist with search engine marketing, MediaPost reported.

Nineteen per cent of those questioned said that although they were planning on spending money on digital advertising this year, they would not put any money into search engine marketing.

The news provider reported that the survey said the confusion could arise from the large number of strategies which small businesses are faced with, and the potential pitfalls they may face along the way.

Almost three-quarters of those questioned said they handled search campaigns internally, despite often having no expertise in the sector.”

Equi Media

We need to remember that no matter how powerful the computer is whether it be a desktop, a Google server, or a super computer its still no human brain. This is what search engine optimization is for — to help the search engine algorithms understand your site better. This will help your site appear more relevant to the keywords you are using to target your audience and get you the most relevant traffic. Relevancy is key in top ranking whether you are talking search engine marketing or optimization (SEM or SEO). Search engine marketing can also help you research your demographic through keyword research tools and trial and error. This will also give you an idea of what the search engine is looking for; this shouldn’t stop at Google, Bing, Yahoo, be sure to include Facebook too. Quality not quantity plays a huge role in top ranking. If you are going to launch a new site a good start is extremely important, not that this means if you were off to a bad start you’ve seen the end of your online presence. Late is better than never, and that’s why Cyber Stampede is here, to help you!

For those who are familiar with the iPhone/iPod game Angry Birds, here is an SEO analogy that relates to the game.

  1. You have to play to figure out the rules
    So many webmasters want to know “the best way” to do this or that – but there rarely is a one-size-fits-all answer. Many times, we simply need to play the game and see what happens, building up the real world knowledge of what is right for OUR situation as we go.
  2. You succeed best when your site’s unique contributions are recognized
    Too much energy goes into being “like site X”. Once you’ve got the basics of webmastering down, what’s important is making your site’s unique qualities obvious in the marketplace.
  3. You can’t recover from a really bad start
    Sometimes you do need to cut your losses and move on. That’s just the reality of the world.
  4. Different problems require different specialists
    Running a website is a diverse project, and you simply cannot know everything required to make the right moves in every situation. Knowing when to bring in outside help or develop a new skill in-house is key.
  5. Blowing something up isn’t necessarily felt everywhere
    If you want to make a major change in an established web business, you often need to think holistically, and realize that there are many factors to take into consideration. You can’t just fiddle around without having some idea of how your entire web ecosystem will react to that fiddling – and that includes how it will look to Google.
  6. Most improvements are incremental
    Great breakthroughs in search traffic are rare. Mostly it’s just putting one foot in front of the other, over and over again. Google even has safeguards that keep a site from exploding onto the scene too fast.
  7. Just because you’ve mastered one task doesn’t make you master of all
    It’s a natural pitfall because webmasters do need to have a lot of diverse skill. But sometimes you need a business plan tune-up, or a conversion optimization, or a usability assessment in order to reach the next level.
  8. You can never do the same thing exactly the same way
    And that means you can never do the exactly same thing that someone else did, either. Google moves on, each website exists in a unique larger web presence, and repeating the same patterns over and over will eventually smack you into a brick wall.
  9. Some goals require more “birds”
    Sometimes you can make successful changes to a website, only to discover that the business can sustain the new level of success. It’s not just Google that needs to focus on “does this scale.” Webmasters who want major success need to look at that question in advance, too.
  10. There is more than one way to win
    Even in SEO this is true. There is more than one keyword or set of keywords that can tap into your audience. There is more than one way to get other sites to link to you. There is more than one way to structure a website. There is more than one way to write HTML, CSS, PHP. etc – even to achieve the same end.

Search Engine Round Table

Be Sure to come back Friday for an article on the difference between SEM and SEO.

Feb
10

Is Bing Stealing Google Search Results?

Matt Cutts@mattcutts
Matt Cutts

So far Bing’s response seems to be “We don’t copy Google’s results. Of course we do.” http://goo.gl/8VoDJ vs. http://goo.gl/yW4Ia

February 1, 2011 2:17 pm via webRetweetReply

Dave Winer@davewiner
Dave Winer

Oooops looks like Google caught Microsoft cheating in search. http://r2.ly/853k

February 1, 2011 3:11 pm via webRetweetReply

Dave Winer@davewiner
Dave Winer

@fxshaw The evidence is pretty convincing

February 1, 2011 3:13 pm via webRetweetReply

I really couldn’t sum it up any better than what I found here! Read more…

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