SEO methods have changed considerably since Google announced its penguin and panda updates. However, the effect that hosting had on old methods still remains the same today. With increasing numbers of businesses now realising that SEO is an essential element to their online success, we want to outline exactly how hosting can make a ranking difference whether positive or negative.
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Many people like to predict the end of search engine optimization and online marketing as we know it. SEO will change and evolve as the web becomes more advanced and desktop oriented but it will not disappear.
As Mark Twain would say, the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
Here is a quote from a popular web forum:
A large domain name registrar has been an innovator of low cost domain name registration and web hosting services for over a decade, and they are always hunting for business.
How do they want to grow in the competitive web hosting marketplace? By using search engine optimization of course!
Unfortunately this SEO experience is not seamless, and is as inconspicuous as a vegan driving a Hummer.
This is my favorite part. If you look at the source code, this is in the footer.
If you are trying to trick Google, at least try to make them work. Real search engine optimization is not adding 5 paragraphs of keyword laden text to the footer of your website.
Real SEO is adding valuable information that is designed to help your users make an informed decision.
I love seeing what other webmasters do to try to improve their rankings. This SEO technique (used extremely loosely here) demonstrates why SEO’s have such a bad reputation in the online marketing industry.
This webmaster makes no effort to hide the keyword stuffed text, and trys to direct search engine spiders to his special content.
I give this is a search engine optimization blooper a 10.
Please excuse me while I increase our chances of getting to the top of the engines. I will repeat myself.
see this in action (warning do not try this SEO technique on your own website)
Using good keyword research and educating editors on proper search engine optimization techniques helped the Hearst publishing empire increase traffic to their web properties by 150%.
Hearst publishes 15 of the world’s most popular magazines including Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Oprah’s O Magazine, and Good Housekeeping as well as 5 web only magazines. Their Senior SEO Analyst for the Digital Media team overcame the challenges of introducing SEO to management, staff writers and editors.
Choosing the right keywords is essential. An online writer must adapt to the online world, which means using different words than for a print publication. Below is an example of using keyword research to write title tags that will reach the largest audience:
When writing for women’s fashion: titles are big part of what they do, so early on we made the decision that we’d instruct them to run some comparatives on the keywords ‘fashion’ and ‘style’. In the print context they like to use the word style, but I stressed to them that style is somewhat nebulous in that it can mean a number of things. People’s behavior online is different because when they are looking for content they tend to be much more literal, because they have to be. The Wordtracker keyword research data showed us that 7:1 people were more likely to use ‘fashion’ than ‘style’ when looking for the kind of content we were promoting.
Here is a great tip on assisting editors with search engine optimization, and coding the keyword research tools into the web based publishing platform.
We have incorporated a link to the Wordtracker keyword tool directly into our CMS (content management system) so that when someone is entering a critical field, like the meta-title, right next to it there’s a link to Wordtracker, which acts as a ‘call to action.’ They can at least check to see if the keywords they have chosen are a solid choice, or if there’s something better out there.
Hearst probably uses a custom CMS, but this could easily be added to the ‘write’ page in wordpress.
Read the full article on how Dan Roberts helped increase Hearst Publication’s online traffic. This is a good thing, because the Hearst.com design looks like it was last updated in 1996.
The popular Long Island New York newspaper Newsday was penalized by Google for selling text links that pass pagerank.
Here is a screenshot of the crazy amount of nofollow tags used by Newsday.com
There are nearly 100 no followed links, but it’s quite curious to see which links are still passing PR. Semi related links to small local destination sites are still getting a link boost from this PageRank 8 site including a wedding, travel, health and shopping site.
Links that are directly related to this large print publication including the LA Times, Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sentinel and other huge newspapers are nofollowed.
The archive shows a section labeled ‘ Featured Links’ which carry sites such as :
- Mesothelioma Lawyer Lung Cancer
- Personal Injury Law Firm
- Buy Mets Tickets
- Buy Yankees Tickets
- Wicked Tickets
- Hamptons Travel
So Newsday.com can boost its fledgling sites while trying to negate the association of major newspapers, and the Hamptons Travel site is still linking with full credit. Hey newsday, i’ll sell you one of my content sites so your PR8 site can link to it and we can dominate the SERP’s.
Google has always been inconsistent in dealing with link sellers. There seems to be no complete method to find out which sites will receive a penalty for selling links that pass page rank. Google has not algorithmically solved the problem of link brokering and must rely on a semi accurate computer model with heavy human intervention.
The SEO Manager, who was hired after the link selling program was implemented, posted a request in Google Groups and apparently got the problem resolved within 1 week. Newsday.com instantly jumped from a toolbar PR 5 to 8.
Google Engineer Reid
Thanks for your post. I’m glad you’re posting here in the Webmaster
Help Group, because the discussions here help educate webmasters
around the globe. I just checked over newsday.com and compared it to
the most recent version of newsday.com that was indexed by
Scrolling near the bottom of what your site used to look like, I see
the following “Featured Links”:
Mesothelioma Lawyer Lung Cancer Personal Injury Law Firm
Buy Mets Tickets Buy Yankees Tickets Wicked Tickets
Please remember that participating in link schemes intended to
manipulate search engine rankings, including buying or selling links
that pass PageRank, is a violation of our Webmaster Guidelines, and
may impact your site’s standing in Google:
If you believe your site was at one point in violation of the
Webmaster Guidelines, and you have since made changes to your site so
that it fits within the guidelines, you can request reconsideration of
your site by following the steps here: