Get the Best Results From Your SEO Professional

If you have SEO on your mind and are looking for an SEO professional then it is important to ensure that you get the correct solution, the first time. Like any service enquiry, you should a) communicate clearly what you need and b) ensure that you understand what services are being offered, and what the expected results are going to be for the price. In short you should make sure that both parties have the same expectations. “Website top of Google” is a vague comment to be made by either yourself or your supplier. “To rank on the first page of the Google search results for [phrase X]” is much better: it is very clear and can form an excellent objective for the SEO work about to be undertaken. But you need to be careful here too: if your potential SEO professional starts making guarantees about Google rankings, then that is not good. Google itself states that no one can guarantee rankings in the Google search results. Identifying the keywords for which you want your website to rank in the Google search results is essential and this list should be agreed by both parties. It is easier to get a website ranking well on Google for more specific, targeted phrases (e.g. “seo sunshine coast”) than more generic phrases (such as “SEO”). In addition to this there are a number of technical aspects about your website that make your website more “friendly” to Google, and easier for your SEO supplier to optimise. These are things that should be discussed and understood prior to getting started with the search engine optimisation of your website. Here’s what I recommend you consider and discuss with prospective SEO suppliers, during those crucial discussion stages.

How you can help your SEO Supplier Do you know what the phrases you need to rank highly on Google for are? Or do you need your SEO professional to find this out for you? Your SEO professional will have a number of specialised tools available which allow him or her to research what keyphrases your target market actually uses on search engines to find your services and products. These phrases often differ from the ones you might intuitively think of, because you are thinking from your own perspective as the seller, you naturally use terminology and jargon related to your industry, and in general it can be difficult for you to really put yourself in the shoes of your potential customer. However your SEO professional will welcome your thoughts on what keyphrases to start with, and will be able to research and develop a pool of keywords for which you need your website to rank well on Google. Also look at your competitors and see what keyphrases they use, or are found to be ranking well on Google for, and generate a list. Provide these lists and ideas to your SEO supplier. Describe your target market to your SEO Professional. Who/what are they (demographics) and where are they (geographic targeting)? This will determine the terminology, grammar and phrases etc to be used on your website and the correct phrases to be included in the SEO (e.g. “optimised” in UK, Vs “optimized” in US). It will also help your SEO professional when he or she comes to formally telling Google where to geographically target your website. Let your SEO professional see your website’s Content Management System (CMS – the area that you login to, to manage your website) so that an assessment can be made as to how SEO (or Google) friendly your website is. If some crucial SEO requirement is not possible with your current CMS then this is best identified early, and sometimes a rebuild of the website might be recommended at this time. Where is your website hosted, and who by? The physical location of the servers upon which your website is hosted can be determined by Google and used to target your website in the country-specific search results (i.e. “pages from [country]”). There are a number of other factors that contribute to this, but it is important information that you should give to your SEO professional. It is also important to ensure that your website is not hosted in a “bad neighbourhood”. This can be with a webhosting provider or on servers that also hosts poor quality, or dodgy websites such as spam sites, or link farms. Being associated with these types of website can be detrimental to your success on Google. What domain names point to your website? Do you have just the one, or are there several domain names pointed to your website? If there are several domain names for your site and the management of these is not done correctly then Google may impose a penalty against one or more of the domain names. This is because Google of course doesn’t want to be displaying multiple copies of the same website or web pages in the search results (called duplicate content). Have any Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) activities been undertaken on your website previously? Importantly have any of those “submit your website to many search engines for cheap/free” – type of things been done for your website by you or anyone else? These are frowned upon by Google and if penalties have been imposed or the website held back on Google because of them, then that makes your SEO Professional’s job much harder, and results more difficult to achieve.

What you need to ask your SEO supplier You will want to ensure that you hire an ethical SEO Professional who will undertake only proper and above board SEO work on your website. Unethical or bad SEO work, where efforts are made to unnaturally or falsely increase the success of your website on the Google search results are absolutely frowned upon by Google leading to penalties, or worst-case-scenario, being banned from Google. This is extremely difficult to recover from and in worst cases the domain name has to be abandoned. These practices include buying link, participating in link farms, cloaking domain names, making text on your web pages visible to Google only and creating other content for Google only, and not humans. As with suppliers of any service you should ask your potential SEO supplier for references. Look for SEO testimonials on their website and check them, and actually ring these clients and verify the success of the work that your potential supplier has done. Ask your supplier for a list of activities they will undertake as part of the SEO of your website and check that no unethical activities are included. If in doubt ask me. If they subscribe to an SEO code of ethics of some sort, then that is desirable as well. Discussion along these lines between you and your SEO Professional prior to undertaking SEO work can really help to ensure the smooth running of your SEO programme, and the achievement of agreed goals. Regular progress updates, or questions from your SEO supplier contribute to your understanding of the work achieved and is valuable, as is your considered response to questions and feedback when requested. An effective SEO solution is one where the SEO supplier and the client work together.

Written by Ashley Bryan, SEO Sunshine Coast

About Ashley Bryan
Ashley Bryan is a website optimisation consultant located on the Sunshine Coast in Australia.

SEO Sunshine Coast

I’LL MAKE YOUR WEBSITE MORE SUCCESSFUL.

I offer website optimisation services designed to increase the success of your website, which means more leads, sales and ultimately business, for you. My services include search engine optimisation (SEO, or getting your website higher in the Google search results, website marketing (increasing the visitors into your website) and website conversion optimisation (turning more of your website visitors into customers).

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Why Most SEO Strategies Fail to Deliver

SEO StrategiesThere are many reasons why a SEO strategy fails to deliver.

In this article I ponder over 10 primary reasons why your SEO strategy could miss its mark.

1. No long term perspective

Most SEO action plans are defined for a limited period of time like 6 months to a year. Many clients feel post that period there will be no SEO needed, or at max, some maintenance to keep up the rankings. It’s this short term thinking that gets website owners caught up in a wrong SEO tactics with little results. The right SEO strategy needs to create “value” throughout the life time of your online business. Is your SEO plan the right strategy?

2. Shooting in the dark

Most SEO experts don’t have a proper strategy in place to secure your rankings. What’s amazing is that the client feels SEO is not something they will understand, and don’t feel they need too. This means your SEO tactics could be shooting darts in the dark hoping to hit the bull’s eye. Are you aware of the SEO strategies being used on your website and do you understand them?

3. Lack of alignment

Most SEO action plans are not consistent, lack participation and deep perspective into search engines. Many SEO experts build random links (from relevant sites) to your website which eventually does push the rankings, sometimes temporarily. But if you want to build a strong link reputation and earn life time traffic, then proper alignment is a must. Is your SEO plan in alignment with the new link variables – consistency, relevancy, diversity, progression, participation and age of links?

4. Playing follow the leader

Most SEO action plans play follow the leader i.e. your competitors. Most clients worry too much about the competitors (and their rankings) and lesser about the “value” they are creating. A SEO tactic that focuses on chasing competitors is like a dog trying to catch its own tail. It’s always seems close, but yet the dog can never catch it. Is your SEO plan chasing its own tail?

5. Wrong expectations

Most SEO action plans make high claims and ranking guarantees. Most clients buy into this. The clients who buy into quick or cheap SEO schemes need to understand the expectations and deliverables properly. If you do not understand your SEO tactic, how it works and why it works, then good luck for the same. Is your SEO strategy based on wrong expectations on either side?

6. Chasing a dream

Most SEO action plans present the dream of tons of traffic that will come to your website. Yes, there is business that will come, but the reality is getting business online is not always easy. It involves creating value, building a brand, communicating that brand, making the brand visible, understanding your target markets and your customer, and a long term vision. And this takes time. Is your SEO plan chasing a dream, or is it grounded in reality following real world business principles?

7. The bigger the better

Most SEO action plans aim to target maximum number of web, user and social communities while link building. And many clients get impressed with the big numbers. What to be kept in mind is that it’s not possible to participate in so many communities at the same time, and over a period of time. So bigger is not always better! Do you have a SEO plan in place that focuses on “value and participation” rather than numbers?

8. Forgetting the customer

Most SEO action plans are not focused on the customer. If your potential customers are not getting any “value” from your SEO strategy then you are on the path to failure. Create value – make that value visible – leads to conversions. Is your SEO plan creating value for your potential customers?

9. Are all SEO Strategies the same?

All SEO experts follow the same guidelines; however, all SEO’s don’t have the right SEO strategy in place to get you closer to your online business goals. So take your time to understand the SEO strategy you plan to implement and why you are choosing that SEO plan over others.

10. The wrong SEO strategy

I believe there are no wrong SEO experts, but there are SEO experts with the wrong SEO strategies. So hire the expert SEO with the right SEO strategy today!

SEO Expert and Author of ZenofSeo Blog.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Nevil_Darukhanawala/269564

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Outsourced Vs In House SEO

Internet Marketing is growing by the day. In such a situation, it is not enough for a business to have just a website. It is important for this website to be visible to the users and appear in search results when users search for related keywords. With so many companies and websites selling the same products or services as your business, how do you make sure that you get noticed and get more business?

This is where Search Engine Optimization (SEO) comes into picture. Many companies are incorporating SEO into their marketing strategies. This raises one more question. Is In-House SEO better or should you Outsource the SEO of your website to an agency? What are the pros and cons of getting the SEO of your website done In-House as compared to outsourcing your SEO needs? Both In-House SEO and Outsourcing SEO have its pros and cons. Each company needs to look into both these models and then decide based on their needs.

Pros of In-House SEO

1. An In-House SEO expert will know your business well and hence will understand the nuances of company and its challenges as well.

2. Doing your SEO In-House gives you complete control over the strategies and their execution. The SEO expert can be contacted immediately for any changes since he sits in the same office as the other members of the company.

3. The In-House SEO expert works only on your website and not on any other websites. This means that the expert can give full attention to your site and can work on improving the rankings of your website.

4. Sometimes In-House SEO is lesser expensive that Outsourced SEO agencies.

In-House SEO Cons

1. SEO is a rapidly changing field. The algorithms of search engines keep changing. One needs to always be updated with the changes. The skills in SEO also keep changing. If you decide to do the SEO of your site In-House, then you need to spend time and sometimes money to learn the new aspects of SEO and keep yourself updated with the changes.

2. It may be time consuming if you have to keep up to the trends of the business. And it is important to keep with the trends of the business if you choose to do your SEO In-House. You will also have to pay attention to the overall marketing of your website and may not find the time to update yourself with the latest in SEO. This can result in outdated SEO practices which can further affect your sites ranking.

3. SEO requires a number of tools. If you choose to do your SEO In-House, then you need to buy these tools. This can be very expensive. Just having these tools is not enough. You also need to learn how to use them which can further take up a lot of your time.

Outsourced SEO Pros

1. The biggest advantage of outsourcing your SEO needs to an agency is that you get the expertise of an entire team of SEO experts who will work on your website. Since, it is a team that only works on SEO projects, they will be up to date with the latest trends in business and hence you do not have to spend time or money in getting yourself familiar with these trends. The team will create SEO strategies for your business keeping these trends in mind.

2. SEO agencies work with a large number of clients. The advantage of this is that they have the experience of working on different kinds of businesses and understand their needs better. This wide perspective can be a big advantage in getting visibility on the web.

3. If you outsource SEO to an agency, you don’t have to spend time, effort and money on hiring an In-House SEO team, training and tools.

4. The outsourced SEO agency will not be affected by the pressures of other aspects of marketing your business and can concentrate only on the SEO of your website.

5. Outsourcing SEO means faster execution of tasks since you get a team of people working on your website as opposed to one or two in-house experts.

Outsourced SEO Cons

1. Outsourcing SEO may require you to sometimes invest a little more money than you would if you were to do the SEO of your website in-house by yourself.

2. If you outsource the SEO of your website to an agency, then they would need sometime to get to know your business and the way you work. This would take up sometime till the agency gets used to working with your company.

3. Since the agency will be handling more than just your website, you cannot be sure of the time and focus that the agency will be giving your website. You may have to constantly keep checking on the work done and on the progress of your site.

4. Some of the SEO agencies may use cheap tool based SEO or black hat SEO techniques to get the results that they promise their clients. You may have to be involved with the agency’s work to make sure such techniques are not being used for your website.

Anita Seol is a staff writer for VTechSEO. Outsource SEO to a leading SEO outsourcing firm in India and USA.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6294987

Simplifying SEO

I have been working in the SEO industry for almost 5 years now. To some I am just a young pup, but I must say the results we get from our SEO campaigns speak for themselves.

When you work in this field of SEO you tend to network with other SEO professionals and stay tuned with the latest SEO waves or updates from Google. You also interact with other SEO experts in the forums and blogs.

I want to express my concern with the amount of complexity added to the subject of SEO. About 80% of information on SEO out there is too deep and complex, with an awful lot of opinions.

Like any technology or methodology, people are looking for usability. They want something which works, creates an effect or makes a difference. This same concept applies to SEO.

Using a technology requires sticking with the basics of that technology. If you sift through the thousands of available “sources” you can usually locate the real source, and this is the information and method one should use when working out how to go about it. This is the correct way to learn and apply anything.

I find it amazing how some SEO experts throw their opinions out on their high-powered blogs, only to confuse another thousand SEO experts.

It is so laughable to watch, and it goes like this:

SEO Expert Joe, needs to get “green carrots” on page 1 of Google for a client.

He is working on it for months, bookmarking, social networks, links etc.

After 2-3 months he takes a step back and looks at his visitor and keyword stats. Not much change, he just isn’t getting the results and his client is starting to wonder.

Suddenly he realizes that a cool video on YouTube may boost things up and get’s this produced an online.

The following week “green carrots” is on page 1! It’s great, it worked and the client is all happy.

After sitting back relaxed and looking at his results, he suddenly realizes that he never optimised the content of his page with enough keywords. Oops. He only mentioned “green carrots” once and still got a page 1 result. This strikes him as strange and it seems to violate everything he learned about page optimisation in SEO.

What happens next is interesting. The SEO expert decides this is valuable information and experience. He has just seen the following new search rule in play, which should be shared with anyone doing SEO:

“Google is no longer giving any value to keyword density. This plays no part in SEO.”

He writes a nice 1000 word article about it and due to his experience, is extremely certain of his findings. He even makes a jab at Google about no mentioning it to anyone. Now he has kudos for finding this out before anyone else.

This is extremely frustrating for anyone who wants to learn the subject of SEO or even old school SEO professionals.And is because of this short-sightedness that the web is filled with millions of pages about SEO which would be better located in the trash.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not talking about the many very useful articles, digests and tutorials out there which can greatly assist an SEO expert to get his job done faster. I am talking about those people who create their own interpretations of what is an extremely precise and logical technology – SEO.

Adding confusion to the subject

I have a real example of this. Last week I read and article from a “leading SEO source”, Seomoz. In their article The Basics of Search Engine Friendly Design and Development, they state loud and bold that:

“Keyword density is, without question, NOT a part of modern web search engine ranking algorithms for the simple reason that it provides far worse results than many other, more advanced methods of keyword analysis.”

Quite a statement! Who’s your source? They referenced Dr. Edel Garcia’s seminal work on the topic – The Keyword Density of Non-Sense. If you go through this source’s article, Dr. Edel Garcia tries to break down the mathematical equation of keyword density improving search results and in the ends supposedly proves it could not be true.

The final statement in Seomoz’s comment on keyword density is amusing.

“Dr. Garcia’s background in information retrieval and his mathematical proofs should debunk any notion that keyword density can be used to help “optimize” a page for better rankings. However, this same document illustrates the unfortunate truth about keyword optimization – without access to a global index of web pages (to calculate term weight) and a representative corpus of the Internet’s collected documents (to help build a semantic library), we have little chance to create formulas that would be helpful for true optimization.”

What does this all mean? In summary, Seomoz told its thousands of followers that “Keyword density has NO PART in SEO”. Then they say at the end that they do not have access to enough search results (Google’s database) to fully validate it. Huh? Why mention it then?

How to simplify SEO

On the opposite side of this story, there are many intelligent SEO experts who work from the source of SEO itself and never deviate. These are some of the finest SEO companies and SEO experts in the world.

So back to the point, the simple question lingering on us now is, “Who is the source?”.

Let’s take a look shall we?

Who decides what ranks well?

Who decides if your content is good?

Who decides if your keywords match what people are looking for?

Who determines if an external link has authority or value?

The answer is simple: Google.

The interesting thing which I found when talking to other SEO professionals is that they like to follow other experts because of their portfolios, attractive articles and other appeal factors.

But, if you want to get into the nitty-gritty of it all, you best bet is to go back to source.

Matt Cutts from Google’s Search Team provides hundreds of videos, articles and updates to keep SEO experts like you from falling into the dark pit of failed websites.

Google wants quality, they want results and they want a great user experience. The only way they will accomplish this is getting SEO companies and their individual staff to understand what their vision is as well as how they work.

Just last week a young SEO company in London contacted us to take over two failing SEO campaigns they were running. They had gotten themselves into all sorts of odd-ball SEO practices and were, of course, failing.

Our Campaign Manager simply referred them to the applicable Google articles on SEO and website quality guidelines and they are now back on track.

Summary

When you come across “new and exciting SEO information”, take the time to verify it with the multiple resource websites available from Google. Don’t just jump in and trust everything another blogger wrote. It may or may not be true, but it is your reputation on the line as an SEO professional.

I hope this helps in getting your SEO campaigns more effective and by the book.

This article was written by Brook Zimmatore, Co-founder of the London SEO company, Sterling Kreative Ltd

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Brook_Zimmatore/225996

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Top 10 Reasons Why Small Businesses Should Hire an SEO Firm

SEO is the acronym for Search Engine Optimization, and it includes all the strategies and techniques that will lead a certain website to a higher rank and a better position in the search results of a certain search engine. Nowadays, SEO and marketing are inseparable concepts. This means that you need it in order to make your business more profitable and successful.

This is the time when, no matter the field of your business, you certainly have a pretty strong competition there. In these conditions, many business owners are happy to just keep their head above the water, but this is definitely not the key to success.

The question is how can you make noticeable progress and be successful if you have a small business? We will offer you an answer that has been already tested by a multitude of small businesses: hire an SEO agency.

1. SEO is not a piece of cake

After you read a few articles on the Internet, you may think that SEO strategies are not such a big thing. In fact, who cannot deal with keyword density, put out links and things like that? The truth is that SEO strategies are a lot more complex, and a successful one requires a lot of time searching the right ways to increase your website ranking.

Moreover, it is important to understand the previous SEO techniques and know why they failed or not. This will help you understand the actual and future SEO tactics. Concepts such as keyword density are history now.

2. Save time

SEO cannot be learned overnight. If you want someone from your company to understand the technique and be good at SEO, you have to provide him with a lot of time for research and study. Taking into consideration that your employee didn’t know too much about SEO before, he will probably be overwhelmed by the multitude of old strategies that are no longer actual. If you convince all of your employees to do some research about SEO and apply some SEO strategies, this is nothing but a waste of time and money. Let your employees do their jobs, and hire an SEO firm.

3. Save money

A wrong strategy will fail and all the time and money you have invested will be wasted. Moreover, you will need some SEO software tools that may seem quite affordable at a first glance, but they are expensive if you calculate the costs. Even low-cost SEO software tools are pricey, and they cannot do the job of an SEO expert. Not to mention that you will have to learn how to use them on your own.

4. Search engines’ algorithms are always updated

If an algorithm is updated, this means that, most probably, some of the ranking factors have changed. This happens very often. An SEO agency will always be aware of these updates, and they will change the strategies and techniques according to every new update. Keeping up with all the updates and knowing how to improve your strategy every time is impossible if you are not an SEO expert, so don’t even think to try it.

5. SEO firms use professional analytics

SEO software and tools are crucial for understanding what are the suitable strategies for your website. You have to know what works and what does not work for you in order to improve your SEO tactics. Professional SEO analytics are expensive and hard to use; that’s why you should think about hiring an SEO firm.

6. SEO experience is irreplaceable

No matter how hard you try to do quality research and improve your SEO strategy, you will never have the experience of an SEO agency. This experience is vital for providing successful SEO tactics and integrating your business into the search engine systems.

7. SEO agencies provide you quality competitor analysis

Competitor analysis is very important for the success of your business and for creating the best strategies. Keep in mind that an SEO agency has a lot of experience and it knows what worked in the case of other businesses in your field and what didn’t. Moreover, they have a complete image of the area of your small business, and they know who your competitors are. If downloading your competitors’ back link profile and analyzing their topical authority sounds strange to you, you should hire an SEO firm.

8. SEO experts bring you relevant traffic that increases sales

Some SEO techniques, such as link building, may have an effect on your page ranking, but they do not improve your sales. Furthermore, link building is not such an important ranking factor nowadays, because it can be easily manipulated. On the other hand, SEO experts are able to bring you relevant traffic, which has a high conversion potential. This means that those who are accessing your website are actually interested in the services you provide, and they are potential clients.

9. SEO firms increase your credibility and popularity

Being regarded as a credible company and gaining popularity are two essential keys to success. Applying the right SEO tactics means a lot of work, but it leads to success. SEO experts can make your business well-known on social media, increase your website ranking and so on. Of course, this is the result of a lot of hard work, knowledge, and experience. As you cannot have all these in an instant, it is better for you and your business to hire an SEO firm that will do all the hard work for you.

10. Weak and Negative SEO techniques will downgrade your website rank

The Internet is packed with negative SEO techniques, such as adding invisible text, spam links, and keyword stuffing that you may be tempted to try if you see that other strategies do not work. Even though all these can increase your page rank on the short term, they are very dangerous on the long term. Search engines will penalize you and your website rank will be downgraded. Then, it will be much harder to upgrade your page rank once again, so don’t even think of trying these techniques.

Donald McKenzie Jr. is the owner of Greenwich SEO Services, LLC. They provide hands on strategic solutions to rank business websites higher, and attract more customers. For a free website analysis and consultation, please visit http://greenwichseoservices.com today!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Donald_McKenzie_Jr/2227905

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