SEO It’s Not Voodoo

I’m up late writing this SEO Liverpool post, because the subject has been on my mind for a few days now. I’m going to dispel a myth. The myth that has helped less reputable SEO companys peddle their snake oil and simply rip businesses off.

“The notion that there are 1001 things to do in SEO is ridiculous”.

I’m not a member of some sort of magic circle, I won’t find a horses head in my bed but some SEO’s won’t appreciate me telling you this.

There are labour intensive tasks that need to be undertaken, but please understand, it’s not that complicated. You don’t need some Matrix style coder and some über geek in residence. There isn’t a 2000 point route map that needs to be addressed for each client.

I’ll say It again ‘It’s an art not a science” and in my opinion, creative marketers make the best SEO’s.

SEO requires a comprehensive understanding of the business in question. The SEO team must understand their goals, have detailed product and brand understanding. You’ll need buyer behaviour insight and a good understanding of different persona’s of searcher behaviour and interactions.

You’ll need buy in from all the other associated departments and managers (everyone needs to sing from the same hymn sheet). Most importantly being able to manage expectations and a lot of creativity are invaluable.

Your SEO must be a reader, the first part of my day will be spent catching up with 20 or so blogs, and then check over my data.

Just wanted to let you guys know.

How Many Links Would be Too Many?

When I’m reading over notes for SEO Liverpool and Summit Online Marketing, I feel it’s quite important to revisit important information, especially if I’m receiving questions around the subject.

I received an enquiry about a website that had lots of links and believe they’re getting penalised for it. The copy seemed succinct, keyword rich and the meta data looked good.

A few years ago I remember reading that over 100 links on a page can be considered a link farm.

My quick bit of advice revolved around PageRank sculpting to enhance search engine ranking. The classic way to negotiate lots of links is in changing them to no-follow links. This is a quick and easy way of not passing on your hard earned ‘juice’ to unnecessary third parties.

Although how much juice still gets through is debatable.

On closer inspection they had gone with the classic ‘ball’ linking structure (Every page links to every other page). It’s not very effective at conserving and spreading the link juice (PageRank, link reputation and link popularity).

I wasn’t saying this was a bad thing, but with SEO, testing is key. I advised changing the structure to what is known as a ‘pyramid’ linking structure.

A pyramid linking structure

Typically all the links leaving the home page are no-followed, except the one leading to the sitemap. The sitemap has normal links to everything, except the home page. With internal pages, everything is no-follow except the link back to the home page. It creates a feedback loop, concentrating all the link love back to the home page. This could mean you’ll be getting a lot of traffic from your internal pages… depending on your content!

Food for thought.