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Hit A Dead End With Seo


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#1 surrealillusions

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 03:37 PM

Hi all,

After a few months in web development (due to a job i had for about 4.5 months before getting made redundant due to the credit crunch, but thats a different story), i've gone back to the part time web design job i had for a local it business, however, i used to do SEO for the business, but lately, I've hit a brick wall in terms of SEO. I've re-done the site to make it more search engine friendly.

So far,
- Made it more CSS based, got rid of alot of the tables.
- Added appropiate alt tags to the images.
- Code uses semantic markup.
- Changed the titles and description on each page to make them more descriptive and unique to that page.
- H1, H2, H3 etc.. tags where appropiate instead of <p class="bold"> rubbish.
- The site is valid xhtml strict.
- Redone in php, old pages were .html, so have added 301 redirects to the htaccess for nearly all the pages (includes all the important ones).
- Submitted site to a few niche directories that link to competitors.
- Submitted site to digg and stumbleupon.

And now ive hit a brick wall on what else to do...the site is certainly lacking in inbound links, so i would like to increase them, but not sure how. Its basically offsite SEO i think that needs doing the most. But i'm not sure what to do as, ive been off the seo market (so to speak) for a few months.

So what do i need to do? (aside from panic)

:)

#2 EGOL

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 04:01 PM

In my opinion the best way to get links is to produce content that other webmasters will link to for free. Are their articles, calculators, images, checklists or other content that you can make to attract links? Once you have that content then writing to webmasters and bloggers who link to other content will help attract the links at a faster rate than waiting for them to appear naturally.

Getting links is the most difficult part of building a successful site.

Lots of people submit articles, solicit directories and do link exchange. In my opinion those are mostly a waste of time.

#3 A.N.Onym

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 04:07 AM

Like EGOL said, creating best of the web content is key. It means that you create the most researched, well formatted and useful article on the topic.

Additionally, there is a type of content that is, probably, a useful list of resources or tips about a popular topic.

Both of such content types do well on social sites, such as Stumbleupon, Delicious, etc. The former is easier to get attention to, the latter is easier to create. I am in favor of investing as much time in an article as possible (the former variant, something that EGOL likes to work on): I wouldn't expect to spend less, than 2 weeks on a nice article. A month would be better. I am thrilled to imagine what kind of an article would it be, if one spent 3 months on it (it's more like an e-book, a series of articles or a guide, I guess).

Unfortunately, Digg is time-consuming to master and they don't like SEO sites (the word "seo" anywhere in domain, in site name, navigation or on the page), so keep it in mind. That's where focusing on a design or an IT topic might be useful and where the best of the web article has much higher chances of getting popular (though you still need a good account to go popular there).

Basically, it goes like this:
- you participate on the social websites that are close to the topic of your website (StumbleUpon, Delicious.com, Dzone and other web related social voting sites: DesignFloat for design, for example) by submitting stories/articles/posts that you find interesting on other sites to them for a while (a month at least)
- while you do that, you research the popular topics on the sites you are targetting
- also, you create the best of the web article on the topic that's most interesting (typically, photoshop/CSS/PHP tutorials or nifty gadgets, etc)
- craft a catchy, emotionally engaging headline
- after you've spent some time building popularity and trust there, you share your article there. It helps to have a friend with a high profile there, but it's not a requirement

It also helps to place the buttons of the most relevant websites at the bottom of the article (Delicious people love lists, SU love images and useful/funny resources, relevant websites love quality, professionally done articles) to help the promotion.

Edited by A.N.Onym, 22 December 2008 - 04:09 AM.


#4 EGOL

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 06:02 AM

Yura is right. Good articles require a lot of time. The average article on my site requires about 10-20 hours of my work and 10-20 hours from one or more of my employees.

Short, quickly written articles do not attract links from what I have seen. If you want links you must beat everything else that's out there.

#5 bwelford

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 09:57 AM

As in running away from a bear, it's important to know how fast your colleagues can run. :P

I think it is very important to choose the most engaging title for your article. That should be one that will really get the human eyeballs. Then do a Google search and a Google Blogsearch for the title. You'll see what others have done on the same topic and you can learn from that. I often cycle round this loop two or three times to develop a topic that will really stand out from the crowd.

#6 saschaeh

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 10:04 AM

Yura - doshdosh.com is really good!

surrealillusions - Go to http://www.doshdosh....ial-news-sites/ and read that and follow the inbedded links. Plenty of good practical information there.

#7 surrealillusions

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 05:39 PM

saschaeh - thanks for the link, have had a read, looks good. Will study it in more detail.

And thanks to everyone else for the help and advice, keep it coming!

Will try and digest everything thats said here in the next few days. Have signed up to dzone and had a look around and voted on a few articles. Will look to see to write a few articles soon.

:P

#8 A.N.Onym

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 01:18 AM

As Barry reminded, crafting the headline is probably the most important thing in creating content and promoting it.

First of all, it's the reason why some articles fail or succeed: you need to include two benefits that will touch the hearts of your audience.
Secondly, the words in the headline should rather be relevant to your site topic for you to get the benefit of targeted traffic and links.
Thirdly, if you research and then start writing the article by writing the headline, you'll get a better picture of what your article will touch upon and you'll need to get yourself to deliver and overdeliver on the headline, when you'll be writing the content.

As Barry said, searching the blogs on the topic will give you not only more info to include in your article, but it'll also give you a few posts to link to to build authority and a few trackbacks to get to get residual traffic from those posts and the attention of the blogger :)

Edited by A.N.Onym, 23 December 2008 - 01:20 AM.




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