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What is SEO – Search Engine Optimization?

What is SEO – search engine optimization? These days there are a lot of business people speaking about SEO or SEO Marketing but most people don’t really understand the concept and how important it is to the success of a business.

So what is SEO?

Here is some information about how SEO. The Rules that govern SEO are ultimately meant to make the web a more enjoyable and useful place.

Search Engine Optimization – SEO is a way to improve websites, blogs or online stores in search results such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, Safari, Facebook etc.  By following certain rules that search engines require to improve their rankings in the search results. Good SEO will makes websites more user friendly and easier for search engines to find relevant content.

Algorithms

When a user performs a search on Google, Bing etc. the order of the returning results is displayed based on algorithms. These algorithms decide in which order the websites appear in the search results displayed on the search page. There are many factors taken into account by the algorithms to decide in which order the results are displayed. Search engine algorithms are been updated all the time so website owners need to continuously keep the SEO updated.

WHY IS SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION – SEO IMPORTANT?

Search engines serve millions of users every day. People are searching for different products or services all the time. Optimizing a website correctly for search engine Algorithms gives the website a huge advantage over websites that haven’t been correctly optimized. What’s the point of a beautiful website if it’s not going to show up when potential clients do a search for products or services on the internet?

SEO needs to be maintained because search engines are constantly updating their algorithms with both best practices requirements and new technology.

Does every business need SEO?

If a business has a website then definitely SEO is needed. What is SEO going to do for any business? It’s going to bring traffic which converts into customers who bring money. Search engine optimization is what puts some websites on the first page of Google.

Google Update Inbound Link Related

The latest Google update is inbound links related.

This Google update is a big algorithm update related to links. It’s about inbound links to sites and content you submit to other sites containing links back to your site. Google wants to do away with spammy links contained in articles referred to as contributor posts, guest posts, partner posts, or syndicated posts. These are usually articles that are written by or in the name of one website, and published on a different one.

A lot of webmasters noticed drops in rankings and traffic to their sites. If your sites inbound links are in order you would have noticed an increase in ranking and traffic to your site.

Google issues warning

Google published a warning reminding site owners that it’s dangerous practices to publish content for the purpose of building inbound links.

Distributing content and links with the main intension of building links is prohibited under Google’s link schemes guidelines 

When is an article in violation of these guidelines?

  • Stuffing keyword-rich links to your site in your articles
  • Publishing articles across many different sites
  • Having a large number of articles on a few different large sites
  • Using writers that are not knowledgeable about the topics they’re writing about
  • Duplicating the content on your site across other sites
  • Using similar content in your articles across these sites

Google reminds us that publishing articles with spammy links will affect our search ranks because it changes their trust of a website.

When link building comes first, the quality of the articles can suffer and create a bad experience for users. This gives users a bad experience.

What is allowed in this Google update?

Guest posts and syndicated posts that inform users or educate users on another site and bring awareness to your company or cause.

Always remember the client come first and internet users are Google’s clients. So it’s always about the users experience on a site or been taken away from that site by a miss leading link to another site.

The best advice is to carry on producing quality content.

Google’s guidelines in link schemes

Read more on good SEO practices

 

 

 

Local SEO Tips that Deliver Results

Every business wanting to make an impact in the local search results for their niche needs to take local SEO seriously. People use search engines to find local businesses they want to buy from. This is not my opinion but Google’s own research proves it, read this PDF report on Google’s research into local search

Here are a few stats;

  • 80% of consumers use search engines to find information about local business and activities.
  • 50% of all consumers that conducted a search using a smart phone visited a store within 1 day.
  • 34% of users who did a local search using a computer or tablet also visited a local store within a day.
  • Local searches lead to more closed deals than non-local searches.

 

This shows people are taking action when they perform local searches. Imagine what this can do for your business.

Here are some tips to rank better locally

You need to focus on creating quality localized content. This should be content on or around your area and which educates users of the specific topic. Be passionate, tell your users why you started your business and what it is you can offer them. Educate them about issues and problems in your niche, educate them about new products on the market.

If you take part in the local community or offer assistance in any way post about it on your blog and social media.

Ask your customers for reviews and share these on your site.

Maps and directories

Most importantly your business should be present and optimized on Google Maps. If you don’t know how to set it get an SEO consultant to do it for you.

You should make a decision about whether to take on the task of doing your own SEO or hiring a consultant to do it properly for you.

List your business on as many local business directories as possible. Ensure to add your contact information, address, telephone number and website URL. It’s important you add the same information across all platforms, if you don’t your search results will be penalised.

Many of these directories will start emailing you promising to improve your search presence, ignore these emails, eventually they will stop.

Again consulting a SEO company or consultant will save you a lot of time as this these companies employ people to do this monotonous work.

Link building

Link building is still an important factor in the SEO process.

Back links are not the same as directory links. Backlinks are harder to find but with some good research and brain storming you will find some. Then what you do is email the website admin and ask them to add a link. Most websites will do this because it adds value to their own ranking. Don’t ever add a link for a link on your site as this works against your ranking. Most importantly never pay for backlinks.

If you follow these suggestions your local SEO rankings will improve

Keep at it week after week and you’ll see your ranking and enquiries from your website grow all the time. It doesn’t happen overnight like paid ads but when your site starts ranking it will stay up there at the top.

Website Security and Hacks – how to fix them

Website security and hacks are on the increase. This was announced this week by Google Webmaster. The number of sites hacked in 2016 increased by 32% compared to 2015. That’s a significant increase in just one year. This trend is going to get worse as more sites become outdated and hackers become more aggressive. On a positive note these hacks can be detected and removed, hopefully before serious damage is done to the infected website. In 2016 google cleaned hacks from 84% of webmasters that applied to have hacks removed from their infected websites. Unfortunately 61% of infected websites were not cleaned because the majority of webmasters weren’t aware their sites had been infected. So remember to continuously check for hacks or hire a SEO consultant or agency to do it for you but don’t ignore it.

Help for hacked webmasters

Google created the following documentation for webmaster to use when removing hacks or malware from their websites. Click on the following links for instructions

https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/top_ways_websites_get_hacked_by_spammers

https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/glossary_for_hacked_sites

https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/FAQs_for_hacked_sites

https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/how_do_I_know_if_site_hacked

Website security and hacks are often infected in similar ways. Google investigated the similarities between these hacks. Using that information they created clean up guides for specific known types of hacks.

Here are a list of these know hacks with links to guides to clean them up.

The Gibberish hack

This hack creates pages on your site with content that doesn’t make any sense. The content is filled with keywords. Hackers do this so the hacked pages show up in search engines, then when users click on the page they are redirected to other sites such as porn sites. This is how to fix this type of hack https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/fixing_the_gibberish_hack

The Japanese Keywords hack

This hack creates pages with Japanese text on the infected site. These pages are usually referred to affiliate sites selling fake brands and counterfeit merchandise. This is how you fix this type of hack https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/fixing_the_japanese_keyword_hack

The Cloaked Keywords hack

This hack creates many sentences, links and images that make sense. At a quick glance the pages look like they belong to the infected site until you read the content. Hackers use cloaking techniques to hide the malicious content and make the infected page appear as part of the original site or a 404 error page. This is how you fix this hack https://developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked/docs/fixing_the_cloaked_keywords_hack

You need to give attention to website security and hacks

Rather than having to clean up hacks it’s best to avoid them. To do this always keep your Content Management System (CMS) updated. If you don’t know how to do this ask your SEO consultant to do it for you.  Ensure that all your software and plugins are up to date.

Stay away from untrusted and untested plugins and software. Hackers often put free products out there to bait you in. Always only use products that you are familiar with. Always be aware of website security and hacks when making changes to your site.

Again ask your SEO agency or even better let them deal with everything to do with your site so you can concentrate on what you do best, manage your business and your clients.

More about SeoWebmaster and how we assist you.

 

 

SEO for Websites – how to improve website ranking

SEO for websites needs to be taken more seriously by business people. SEO stands for search engine optimization.

I see many companies with beautiful websites. Some of them stunning websites with all the whistles and horns, including all the latest technology and yet they don’t rank anywhere. Why is this?

What does SEO do for my website?

SEO is what gets my website get found on search engines. What’s the point of a flashy, sexy website if my potential new clients don’t see my site when they’re searching Bing or Google for my products or services? I see people spending thousands on the actual website without following it up with a good SEO marketing campaign. Sure an awesome website is good for your business but it’s kind of like having the latest luxury car with an older small engine to run it.

Most people click on the natural links anyway, these links are known as ‘organic search results’. Good SEO is the only way to found in search results without spending a lot of money on paid ads.

Good SEO for websites is what brings the clients to your business site. The content on the website is what converts them to clients. So it’s important to have awesome content to convert those potential clients once they click on your site.

What are the steps to getting good SEO for websites

Find yourself an SEO consultant. The best place to look is search the internet. Choose your consultant by how well their own website ranks. After all if they can rank well then they will know how to do same for your site.

The SEO consultant will do an audit of your website, assess where you are now. Then work out a basic strategy and they should then meet with you to discuss your individual needs and goals.

It’s important to note that there is good SEO and bad SEO. Bad SEO will have negative effects on your search ranking. Ask questions. Ask the consultant what tactics they use.

SEO is constantly changing. Google, Bing and the other search engines make changes to their algorithms all the time. Ask the consultant how he keeps up to tabs with the latest SEO trends.

You have probably entered a search phrase into a search engine to find this article. What brought you to this page is called good SEO.

The most important aspect of SEO for websites is that you have a vision of where you want be on search engines. When a client of mine can tell me where he wants his or her site I know exactly what to do to get it there.

Read this page for more information SEO home page

 

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization also known as SEO is the practice of optimizing website to make them rank higher in Google, Bing and other search engines, search results. There are different factors to take into account when optimizing a website. It is vital to take all these factors into consideration when implementing search engine optimization on a site, they are equally as important.

Organic ranking

Organic ranking is the natural way of ranking a site without paying for adverts. Organic ranking takes longer to rank because paid ads show immediately in search results. But once your page is ranking organically it will always show in search results. Another advantage is the majority of internet users’ click on the natural search results showing on the first page of a specific search, that’s where you want your website showing up.

On-page SEO

On-page SEO are all the factors that influence search engine optimization on the website itself. The structure of the site.  All the technical settings and coding. The page speed. Is the site mobile friendly and are there security issues. And also the content on the site, which also needs to be optimized.

Off-page SEO

Off-page SEO is all the search engine optimization that is not done on the website itself. This includes Backlinks, Social Media. Off-page SEO can be more difficult to influence the page rankings. But both off-page and on-page SEO are important, you need to spend time on both if you want your website ranking on page one of search results.

Search engine optimization is always changing

The different search engines are always changing and updating their algorithms which in turn affects search engine optimization.

It’s vital that all site owners keep up to date with these changes and apply them before they happen. If this task is too big for you we suggest hire a SEO expert to take care of your SEO.

If you are new to SEO and would like some advice from Google before hiring someone to do your website’s SEO the click this link https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35291?hl=en

Home page  this is what we offer all our new clients

 

Best SEO Company in Durban – Call Us Today

SeoWebmaster is the best SEO Company in Durban. That’s a big statement to make right? If we’re claiming to be the best then we must tell you why we’re the best SEO Company in Durban. https://seowebmaster.co.za ranks higher in the search ranking than any other SEO company in South Africa not just Durban. We say Durban because we service the Durban to South Coast area.

We check our own, our opposition and all our clients site ranking daily. We know we are the best SEO company in Durban because rank above all the rest.

We will send you your websites present ranking if you don’t know it. All you have to do is send an email request to gordon@seowebmaster.co.za / after we’re spoken I can give you your opposition’s website ranking as well, no costs involved. If we rank the best in our niche’ the surely we can do the same for your business, after all we’ll be using the same strategies.

How do we know the best SEO practices? By keeping up to date with changes made to Google and Bing’s algorithms. These changes are taking place more frequently than the market is actually aware. Google only announce major updates but the changes are happening all the time. Bing and the other major search engines then follow.

SEO tactics we use to make us the best SEO Company in Durban

  • Local search engine optimization; Google’s latest algorithm update Possum focuses big on ‘local search results’ see https://seowebmaster.co.za/local-search-results-possumamp/
  • AMP/ Accelerated Mobile Pages; as most searches are done on mobile, 73% of users that found SeoWebmaster in Google search were using mobile devices. Users abandon sites that take 3 seconds or longer to load. AMP is a new technology that loads your web pages with lightning fast speed. We set your website up so it is AMP user friendly. See https://seowebmaster.co.za/accelerated-mobile-pages-set-up-todayamp/
  • Keyword research and advice; we provide you with specific keywords and teach you how to include them in your site’s content. We then optimize the keywords so that they are found in search results when users search the internet. Keywords are and always will be what drives traffic to users searching the internet, it’s how they’re used and optimized that has changed. We receive email updates from Google Webmaster every time they are about to make a change to their algorithms. We instantly apply these changes to our client’s sites and inform them.
  • Backlinks; A lot of people in the SEO industry think backlinks don’t count anymore. They are wrong. It’s the type of backlinks to be used that has changed. We research and add backlinks to your site.
  • Search Index Submitting. We take care of submitting all your content and changes to your site to all the search engines.
  • Broken Links. Broken links are very bad for search engine optimization. If you have broken links on your site then you will be penalized in search results. We keep tabs on all your links and repair them when needed.
  • Google Analytics. If you don’t already have analytics we set it up for and show you how to monitor your website. You can use this information when planning your marketing campaigns.
  • Social media. We link all your social media pages to receive all your website posts automatically. We’ll post articles related to your business niche’ daily.
  • Website Maintenance; ensure software updates are applied and scan the site weekly.

There is lot more to SEO than listed above but this is a general overview of what we will do for you. There are other tactics we use that get fantastic results for our clients, that make SeoWebmaster the best SEO Company in Durban, but I won’t list them here because they are what make us stick out from the rest and make us the best.

Have a look at our home page https://seowebmaster.co.za  or call Gordon: 0783077711 to set an appointment.

 

Auto-generated spam – protect your site

You have probably noticed auto-generated spam in the comments section of your website, blog or forum threads. This auto-generated spam disrupts users visiting your website. It might also show content you don’t want on your site. Mostly you probably don’t want this content associated with your site to search engines.

In an attempt to get more traffic to their websites some spammers post deceiving content and links to other sites. The good content of your site can be buried by auto-generated spam in the form of keywords and links placed there by spammers.

There are ways to protect your site’s forum and comments thread from spammers.

  • Add a CAPTCHA. Using a CAPTCHA requires users to confirm that they are not robots. There are many CAPTCHA services available.
  • Check your comments daily. If a user is posting excessive amounts of posts then you should probably review their profile, make sure their posts are not auto-generated spam or spammy related comments.
  • Disable comments on old posts. It’s good practice to close threads on very old content, they most likely won’t get legit replies.
  • Make use of moderation capabilities. Change your setting to require approval before comments are publicly visible.
  • Make use of “nofollow” attribute for links. Using “nofollow” attributes in the comments field will deter your site been targeted.
  • Use automated systems. There are automated systems available that are easy to install which do the work for you.
  • Keep your updated and patched. Always keep all your software up to date, especially security updates.

Always be aware of what is happening on your website. If you are not able to or don’t have the time then hire someone to do it for you. A good SEO consultant will take care of the work for you as part of his service.

If you suspect your site has been the target of any type of spam get a professional to sort the problem as all your hard work and investment could be in Jeopardy.

https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2017/01/protect-your-site-from-user-generated.html

SeoWebmaster Home Page

 

Keep websites safe from hacks

The best way to keep websites safe from hacks is to keep it updated.

Whichever Content Management System or e-commerce platform you’re using to build and manage your site, keep up with updates. Sign up for security announcements. Set auto-updates where possible.

These links to common Content Management Systems and e-commerce platforms will give you more information about what you should and shouldn’t be doing:

WordPress  Magento  Drupal  Joomla  WooCommerce

https://seowebmaster.co.za/auto-generated-spamamp/

 

Crawl Budget what it means to Googlebot

Google released a post on their blog on 16th January 2017 explaining what crawl budget means to Googlebot.

They emphasized that if new pages are crawled the same day they’re published, then crawl budget is not something webmasters need to focus on. Also if a site has fewer than a few thousand URL’s, it will usually be crawled efficiently. So crawl budget is not something most publishers need to worry about.

It’s more of a priority for bigger sites that prioritize what to crawl and how much resource the host server can handle, or for auto generated pages based on URL parameters etc.

Crawl rate limit

Crawling is Googlebot’s main priority, while ensuring it gives the user to a site a good experience. This is “crawl rate limit”, it limits the maximum fetching rate for a site.

The number of simultaneous parallel connections Googlebot uses to crawl the site and the time it has to wait between each fetch. The crawl rate can go up and down based on numerous factors.

  • Crawl health; if the site responds quickly for a while, the limit goes up meaning more connections can be used to crawl. The limit goes down if site slows down or responds with server errors, the Googlebot crawls less.
  • Webmasters can reduce crawling of their site in Search Console.

 

 Crawl demand

These two factors that play a significant role in crawl demand

  • URL’s that are popular and are crawled more often on the internet are crawled more often to keep them fresher.
  • Googlebot’s system attempts to prevent URL’s from becoming stale in the index.

Events like site moves might cause an increase in crawl demand in order to reindex content under a URL

Crawl rate and crawl demand together define crawl budget, the number of URL’s Google can and wants to crawl.

Factors affecting crawl budget

Having many low value-added URL’s will negatively affect a websites crawling and indexing. The low value-added URL’s fall into these categories in this order of significance;

  • Faceted navigation and session identifiers
  • On-site duplicate content
  • Hacked pages
  • Infinite spaces and proxies
  • Low quality and spam content

Pages like these will waste server resources and will drain crawl activity from pages that do have value. This will cause a significant delay in discovering good content on the website.

Google Webmaster’s official post

SeoWebmaster will fix all your crawl errors – Home Page