Raven Tools Remove Rank Tracking

I started typing this as a comment on this post but the comments there are getting a bit overwhelming so I’ve moved it to my blog so I can have a proper rant, and also direct my clients to this page.

Yesterday afternoon myself and thousands of other Raven Tools customers got the message below, letting us know that we had less than a month before Raven would shut down the SERP tracker tool that sits at the heart of its toolset. Continue reading

A New Way to Fake PageRank?

Lately I’ve noticed a few sites coming up for sale and selling link with ridiculously high Google PageRank. Most recently this PR10 on Flippa (copy of that page here for when the auction ends).

Now obviously the PageRank of virginia11.info is fake. It has virtually no links, was only registered a few months ago and doesn’t rank for anything. But its interesting that this seems to be a different type of PageRank faking than I’ve seen before. Continue reading

Are Your Rich Snippets Breaking the Law?

You’ve probably noticed by now that its become very easy to get star rating ‘rich snippets’ to show up in organic search results. It used to be a select few sites which would get approved for rich snippets but recently that seems to have gone out the window and you can now see star ratings showing up on all kinds of SERPS, not just stuff where you’d expect to see customer ratings. Continue reading

Optimising Internal Link Anchor Text with WordPress Menus

One of the points I suggested in my post on SEO theories which I can’t prove was that

“Internal links are more important than external links”

In this post I’m going to show you how to get much more value out of your internal linking using a simple technique, but first let me put some flesh on the bones of that statement above.

A site cannot function or rank without internal links. Don’t believe me? Try removing all your internal links from your site and just see what happens to your rankings. That’s why I say internal links are more important than external links- remove all the external links to a site and Google can still find and index your pages. Remove the internal links and Google will only index the pages which have external links pointing to them. Continue reading

How to Beat A Panda

Run for your lives it’s another post about the panda update! I don’t usually blog about SEO news and algorithm shifts for a couple of reasons- firstly it’s boring and other sites will always be better for that sort of thing. Secondly because of the approach I take to SEO I rarely get effected by changes at Google.

Actually most of my sites and my clients, have either gained slightly or been unaffected by the panda update. I do however think it’s pretty significant and have spoken to a few site owners who have been smashed by it although not nearly as badly as some are making out (and no I won’t be linking to searchmetrics here!).

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How to beat Q & A sites at their own game

Another quick post today…

I really hate Q & A sites, they’re 95% morons asking questions and other morons wasting their time answering them (if you’ve got that much time on your hands get a blog and make some money people!). However I can’t deny they have something of a magic formula when it comes to bottom feeding off long tail search traffic because plenty of people like to search in that Ask Jeeves style of “how do I”, “how can I” or “what is”.

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Finding similar sites for your link research

One of my favourite ways to build up a link building prospect list is to find a few sites which I think I can get a link from, either with a simple link request, a guest post, a payment or something more creative, then to dig around for similar sites which might also make good prospects.

Here’s a run down of a few tools you can use to make this research a bit easier. All these tools work best if you use them for general queries or themes rather than something very specific.

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Content Development with Raven Tools & Textbroker

When I wrote my Raven Tools review before christmas one of the points I made was this…

What I’d really like to see here is an integration with the textbroker API so you can order content and have it dropped straight into your Raven account to push out to your blogs.

Sure enough Raven announced last week that they had added this exact feature to the toolset, so I thought I’d take it for a spin.

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Online Casino SEO

There was a talk on this subject at the SEOmoz pro seminar earlier in the year which I was looking forward to but which I felt really didn’t give anything useful away so I want to make this post as detailed and useful as possible. If I miss anything you think should be included let me know and I’ll add it.

In this post I want to share with you some ideas for how I do SEO for online casinos, some of this will of course be transferable to other gambling sites as well as any other competitive vertical. As is the way with all things search, the more lucrative a new customer acquisition the more competitive the space and therefore it stands to reason that a casino player (or gambler in general) is going to be a fiercely competed for prize. Ranking number 1 for a term like ‘online casino‘ is literally worth millions of pounds a month so if you’re getting into this market you better come prepared!
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Raven SEO Tools Review

Raven SEO tools logoDon’t you hate it when SEO blogs start doing reviews to try to shift shitty tools with big affiliate paychecks?! I’ve wanted to do a review of Raven tools for a while but have resisted it until now for that very reason. As a precursor to the first review type post I’ve written here I wanted to give a bit of background to my involvement with raven tools and tell you why I think I’m in a position to write this review.

I was first introduced to raven tools about 18 months ago by my colleague at the time Kelvin, we were shopping around for a new tool to manage our SEO campaigns and Raven had recently launched publicly. On the face of it the tool did a lot of the stuff we were trying to develop ourselves at the time, it wasn’t perfect by any means but it was better than any other SEO tools I’d come across. We gradually introduced Raven into our processes and watched as the tool grew, added new features and the team behind it seemed to continually expand.

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SEO theories I can’t prove

This is a post I started writing ages ago and didn’t finish. This week people have been talking about Google’s latest revelation that they’re using Tweets and Facebook likes as part of their organic search algorithm. If you read my post on building links to ecommerce product pages you’ll know that this is something I’ve been talking about for quite a while now. Hopefully if you read that post and believed me when I said this you’ll already have been working on ways to get deep links from Tweets and Likes and will be ahead of the curve with this already…

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Ranking for competitor brand terms

This is one of those techniques which is rarely talked about when it comes to commercial SEO campaigns but its one of my favourite ways to grab extra traffic and piss off competitors in the process;-)

As any affiliates out there will know one of the easiest and most profitable ways to make money with affiliate marketing is to rank for the brand names of your merchant advertisers (be it in organic or paid search results). So if I’m an affiliate of Argos I want to rank for ‘Argos’, ‘Argos voucher code’, ‘buy toasters on argos’, ‘www.argos.co.uk’ etc. Look at any of those voucher code sites and you’ll see this is part of their core strategy.

The reason its so effective is because branded terms have far higher conversion rates than non-branded. If I’m searching for Argos.co.uk its probably because I want to buy something on Argos. I often recite with glee the story of when I ranked position 2 and 3 for a merchant brand term and they screwed up their site during a redesign causing Google to drop it for 2 weeks. During that time my affiliate link was the only way to find that brand in Google. Happy days indeed!

Anyway, while affiliates do this all the time, ‘real’ companies are far less likely to acknowledge competitor brands on their site, let along actively try to rank for them. If you’re feeling cheeky, here’s some ideas how you might go about ranking for competitor brands…
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How to change your ranking page & get an indented listing

Here’s the situation- you rank for a keyword. Great. But the wrong page is ranking. Not the end of the world sure but just like with a PPC campaign making sure the most targeted page is ranking for any particular keyword is the easiest way to improve your conversion rate. Also if you find you’ve got the wrong page ranking chances are with a bit of work you can also go for a second indented listing.

I see this happening ALL THE TIME with big travel and ecommerce sites and its such a quick win if you’re not looking at this kind of stuff you’re throwing money away.

I’m going to demonstrate how I do this with a real example. Continue reading