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Web_Scraping_Wide

What are Scraper sites?

Ever since the introduction of affiliate and Pay Per Click advertising, there have been web sites on the Internet that are trying to produce an income from displaying commercials without adding real value for the user or to the Internet in general. Web sites that have no unique content, or in some cases no content at all, have been on the rise for the last couple of years. Some of these attempts at creating a virtually unique advertising surface are from web sites that automatically produce pages on a certain topic, by crawling the web, copying and blending information on the theme to make it less easy to identify as plagiarism, but organizing the data for web crawling bots, and not visitors. Some of these web sites have gone to a level in accumulating unique-looking but actually scraped and then combined content, that they would simply query different search engines, and use the titles, links and descriptions of the pages from the results as their content.Scraper pages may be disguised as many things, most are giving off the feel of a search result page, some are posing as blogs, news feeds, some are exact copies of content found elsewhere on the web. The common feature is the pay per click advertising links featured on the pages, for which the content was scraped for. Scraping itself is not a negative thing, however when automatically gathered information is reorganized without the knowledge, will or benefit of the original authors/publishers, furthermore the thus created web site is compiled in a way that it clearly is of no use to the visitors either, that web site is to be considered spam. A surface created to rank high in search engines, implementing an unnecessary step for users between queries and the actual web sites, benefiting from the disguised Pay Per Click advertisements.

Known issues

Since these pages are created automatically, and some can only be manually evaluated as spam, Google will eventually index some of the many. Thus links and content on such pages may sometimes point to, or be taken from another, legit and valid web site. In such cases the better established and longer history page is nearly never affected in any way, the links from such scraper sites are rarely taken into account for judging trust or relevance. Also most of such sites are soon filtered out or reported to the Google Web Spam team, and if not automatically, then manually removed from the index. In certain cases scraper sites may however cause a lower importance page within a web site to be considered for examination as duplicate content. Another rare issue is when a massive amount of 3rd party scraper site pages link to a web site, and thus generate an incoming link pattern for it, that is similar to massive link scheming methods.

+ Resolution: Should you become aware of your content being used on such a web site, or being linked to from such pages, you should report the URL in question to the Google Web Spam team through the Google Webmaster tools panel. For some technical precautions and security tips read more on Hijacking as well.

Resources

Scraper site – Made for AdSense ( MFA ) ( Wikipedia )
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scraper_site

How can I report a site that’s spamming your search results? ( Google Webmaster Help Center )
http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=35265

Scraper sites ( Webmasterworld )
http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum89/11338.htm

AdsBlackList.com
http://www.adsblacklist.com/


SEO-for-Video

Increase your SEO by optimizing video for search

Turns out, getting to page one on Google search is significantly easier with video than with a web page. Few people are optimizing or even using video for SEO, making competition lower, and reputedly 50 times easier to reach high rankings.

So, if you’re up for the challenge of creating some high-quality relevant videos, you’re SEO will love you for it. Here are some tips before getting started:

  1. Make sure you have a YouTube account that you can dedicate to your company videos. Doing it from your personal account might throw people off and it certainly won’t help your branding.
  2. Come up with high quality ideas. If your videos are sub-par and boring, Google will know. Somehow, they always know. Just like good content gets high ranking and traffic, good videos will come out on top.
  3. Know your audience. This one should be pretty obvious. Understand your audience so you know what tone to take with your videos. Should they be humorous? Educational? Rigid? Straight to the point? Knowing your audience will help you craft videos that are a perfect fit to help you climb the ranks.

Once you start creating videos and uploading them for the world to see, there are a few things you should be doing to help with the SEO.

  1. Post the video on different mediums. To increase the visibility, upload your video onto YouTube and embed it on your company website.
  2. Maximize your metadata. The description, tags, and video title will all play a role in the SEO of the video. Make sure to spend time filling out each of these categories, it will be worth the extra time.
  3. The first 48 hours will make or break you. It’s a known fact that new videos are more likely to climb the video rankings than older videos. So, in those first 48 hours, use all of your social media power to get as many views, comments, and likes as possible.

We hope these tips give you a good starting point for videos and video optimization. Videos are a less tapped-into resource for SEO and can be a huge source of success for businesses. While it’s a bit more time consuming, we’ve seen it work, so next time you’re looking for an exciting way to beef up your SEO strategy, don’t leave video out of the equation.

 

 


Utilizing-your-blog-effectively-for-SEO

Utilizing Your Blog More Effectively for SEO

We deal with a lot of blogs at Trafficado–some are done really well, but most are not meeting their full potential (including our own at the moment). Writing content is one of those things that comes naturally for a few, but is quite difficult for many people. If you are having trouble getting started with writing, read this post for tips to get you started writing a blog.  Assuming you have begun writing and are at least comfortable publishing your thoughts, here are some characteristics of a blog that will help take your blog to the next level and increase your website’s benefit from SEO.

Ideas for posts

There are a ton of sources of inspiration for writers. Conversations, real world problems, articles or other blog posts, reviews of products, wandering minds, and a million other sources. But that doesn’t mean that you’ll be flowing with topics to write about and it also doesn’t mean you’ll write about topics your readers will be interested in. Many struggle with this. Throughout the day you may come across several different ideas but don’t think to write down your thoughts or you forget the topic when you sit down to write. To help with this I like to keep a note file on my phone (or a notebook and pen–if you still own those things) and I constantly refer to it throughout the day. This helps me think about topics to write as well as remind me to record those ideas when I come across them. And then when I sit down to write I can review those and start crafting an actual post. Usually I just add drafts with thoughts and then over time work those into a published post. Another way to generate great ideas for your blog is through the use of analytics. As you look through where your traffic is coming from you  can identify what people are looking for. You can identify what they wanted to know and see if you addressed what they were looking for sufficiently.  To do this more effectively you can use HitTail to help automate the process and come up with a systematic solution for post ideas that will help you gain additional organic traffic. They will give you recommendations for topics based on your existing search traffic and their algorithm to identify the best opportunities. The beauty of HitTail is that uses your analytics but is geared towards helping you target blog content so you don’t have to filter through a lot of other information to get keywords that you should be targeting.

 Rel Authorship/Publisher

Another step to taking your blog to the next level is setting up rel authorship. This is the process by which you verify your identity as the author of specific posts with Google. The idea is that Google will favor authors who create high quality content and social engagement. They will also show your image in the search engine results which can help catch the attention of those searching and lead to a higher click through rate. You can do this individually as the author, and then also set up a “publisher” to identify the content coming from your company. Rel Author SERP ImageThere are many posts on how to implement authorship, so I won’t do it here. Check out the following posts:

Search Engine Land: Guide to Google Authorship

Search Engine Journal: How to Setup Google+ Authorship

 

Invite Guest Bloggers

One common problem with blogs is trying to get enough content published to keep readers coming back. For SEO, the more content you have the better your site will rank for long-tail keywords. But if you can’t produce much content yourself it can be hard to get that additional organic traffic. So one thing that helps is to invite guest bloggers to your site. The goal is to provide consistent high quality content on a variety of topics targeted towards your audience. You probably will need to start off reasonably small inviting people you have good relationships with, but as your blog becomes more authoritative you will have an easier time convincing people to write for you. You may have to explain the benefits of SEO and blogging depending on your industry and guest authors understanding, but most people will understand when you tell them that your site gets traffic and the post they write will link back to their site or social profile to help them gain exposure. Make sure you review posts before they are published (at least until the writer(s) prove themselves if they are going to be writing on a regular basis for you) so you can weed out spammy posts and focus on high quality guest posts that provide real value to your readers.


GuestBloggers1

Five Characteristics of A Non-Spammy Guest Blog Post

As a marketer, I’ve seen my fair share of spammy guest blog posts and the truth is, spammy guest posts are easy for a search engine to sniff out and take action against.

I see my post today being very valuable to two audiences, those who produce guest posts as part of a link acquisition strategy, and those who publish guest posts on their website. The last thing you want to do as a publisher is get your domain torched for posting very generic, similar looking content. Let’s jump in.

 Unique Look & Feel

The first characteristic is a simple one to understand and begin to execute, that is, making sure that every post you write or publish has its own unique look and feel to it. Writing 400 word posts, four paragraphs, with a left justified image, and three links in the author bio is not only boring, but completely unnatural and is super easy for the search engines to uncover. Spend an extra ten minutes and make them all look and feel different.

 Image Usage

The second characteristic sort of plays into the first one, that is, using images in your posts. When using images with your content, make sure to switch it up in terms of placement. In one post, left justify, in the next, right justify. You can also use multiple images strategically placed throughout your content (don’t forget to optimize them). Just remember that no one wants to read a post that is just full of words, especially the search engines.

 Internal & External Link Usage

The third characteristic is making sure you are leveraging the content to link in and out to other related content. Again, you don’t want all of your links to be in the author bio. Take some time to do some research to find some other blog posts on the site you are publishing on or other external sites in the same niche. Write and link like a real blogger, not a link builder.

 Social Engagement

The fourth characteristic is working to get each placement in front of your audience to help entice the sharing of your content. You can clearly tell when a piece of content has been written just for links when there are a bunch of goose eggs across all of the share buttons on your post. Take an extra fifteen minutes and share the content yourself an ask a few of your social media buddies to do the same. You might also consider leveraging communities like Triberr or Dizzle to get the ball rolling.

 Comments

The fifth and last characteristic kind of goes hand in hand with social engagement, that is, work to get at least a few comments on your content. If you are writing and publishing stellar content and you are producing some shares, you will probably pick up a comment or two, but if you aren’t simply ask others in you organization or in your contact list if they would be willing to drop a legitimate comment on your content.  Comments add unique content to the page your content lives on as well as solidifies that it is a real blog post that is trying to create value.

So there you have it, five characteristics of non-spammy guest blog posts. Am I missing anything? If so, please share in the comments section below.

 About The Author

Steve Jensen is an online marketing specialist at Vysibility.com. Vysibility is a full service digital marketing agency that specializes in offering digital marketing services, tools, and training. To learn more about them, please visit their website.


landing-page

Five Tips For Creating The Ultimate Landing Page

In most marketers minds, there’s no question that they can drive traffic to their websites. You can do this through many different online marketing tactics such as SEO, PPC, Social Media, Blogging, Etc. For many marketers, the problem lies in the fact that it’s often times difficult to convert that traffic into paying customers. In today’s post, I want to talk about five things you should start doing today, to improve your landing pages and convert more of your traffic into dollars.

Include All Critical Elements

When it comes to landing page creation and optimization, you have to include a few critical elements in order to effectively capture leads. Your landing pages should include the following components:

  • An attention grabbing headline
  • A brief, to the point description of the offer
  • At least one supporting image
  • A form to capture your visitors information

Kill The Main Navigation

Once a visitor reaches your landing page, it is important that you keep them there and not distract them with anything other than their offer at hand. If you display your site navigation or have any other internal links pointing to other pages on your site, you are increasing the chances that they will not complete the action you want them to. One of the simplest ways to increase the conversion of your landing pages is to kill the main navigation, so just pull it and watch your conversion rate increase.

Sell The Benefits

At the end of the day, customers don’t make decisions based on features or advantages, they make  decisions on the benefits they will receive. That is why it is critical to sell the benefits and value on your landing pages. For example, instead of saying “You need our SEO services because of X, Y, or Z” you should say something like, “Learn how our SEO services can help increase your revenue by X”. Can you see how they are different?

Ask Only For The Information You NEED

When building your landing pages, you might be tempted to ask for every bit of information you can get from your potential customers. This might include, name, email, phone, company name, etc, however, asking for too much information can kill your conversion rate.

Instead of asking for as much data as you can think of, you should be limiting it to the information you need to qualify your leads before you hand them over to the sales team or plug them into your marketing automation system. In many cases, this might be name, email, and job title. At the end of the day it’s going to differ by industry and you will need to make a business decision on what data you need. However, I must stress, don’t just make a decision and stick with it. You should always be testing!!

Provide Proofs

The last component you need to work into your landing pages are proofs. Proofs can be testimonials, case studies, customer logos, or any other “proof” that you are the real deal!

Proofs do two things, first, they reduce anxiety, second, they help sell your offering long before you go in for the close.

Well, those are, in my opinion, the five most crucial things you need to work into your landing pages. Do you have any other tips you might add? If so, please feel free to add them in the comments section below.

 About Greg

Greg Shuey is the VP of Client Services @ SEO.com a leading provider of SEO services. Greg runs the day to day operations of the client services team as well as oversees strategy and execution for all SEO.com clientele.


big-brands

Don’t Get Left Behind in Google’s Move Towards Big Brands

For the last 2 years, SEOs have been finding Google giving priority weight to brands, and edging out the little guys. In fact, at the BlueglassX conference going on this week, Greg Boser said, “Google’s organic search has become so localized that companies who don’t have brick & mortars struggle.”

About this time, internet marketers start to divide into two camps. Those who say:

1. Big brands are the ones who deserve to be on top! (These inevitably work for companies with an existing brand already built).

2. C’mon, give the little guy a chance! (SEOs representing smaller brands)

The dichotomy here is interesting, and it’s easy to put the conspiracy hat on and say that Google is giving preference to those who are more able to pay for their ads. Unfortunately, this isn’t a move that Google is going back on, so it’s time to learn how to build a brand.

Recently Wil Reynolds coined the term RCS (Real Company Stuff[edited for content]) when talking about how companies should attempt to brand themselves. Next time you catch yourself wondering what the next step is to move your SEO strategy forward, the answer should be, “Do real-company stuff!”

What Do Real Companies Do?

That’s a good question. Here are some overt things that big companies do, and you should start considering doing:

  • Press releases
  • Sponsorships
  • Ads
  • Social
  • Blog
  • Newsletter
  • Get relationship links

Press Releases

Real companies have milestones, celebrations, and relationships with the media. Press releases are your best way to start that process. For your first few, it may feel like you’re shouting into a dark room, and they cost money. Don’t give up – this should be one of the staples to your media strategy.

Sponsorships

Real companies sponsor or co-sponsor events and teams. They have relationships with, and get mentioned by other brands. If you don’t have this, put some budget aside for it. Make sure that the sponsorship will be recorded online because it’s not going to pay dividends in online presence unless Google can find it.

Ads

Google has sworn for years that their paid results don’t influence their placements for search results, but now that’s seriously in question. Real companies engage in display advertising on various networks. Remember, if you put all your spend on AdWords, they know exactly how big you are.

Social

Real companies have real fans and real engagement. Those fans tend to interact with the brand on Facebook & Twitter, and a bit on Google+. You’ll never convince Google you’re a brand with no social interaction.

Blog

Real companies have something to say. They employ subject matter experts, thought leaders, and they write interesting things that get mentioned, cited, and quoted. Content marketing isn’t only the new buzzword; it also works. Your blog is the center of that strategy, so assign posts or write them yourself – either way, you need blog content.

Newsletter

Surprise! Real companies have people who are interested in what they have to say. Start a newsletter and encourage people to sign up to receive it. Abide by the regulations in the Canned Spam Act and make it really easy to unsubscribe. These things protect your brand, so they’re what real brands do.

Relationship Links

Real brands have real relationships with other companies both off and online. Those relationships manifest themselves in social chatter, links, and many other ways. Start making connections as your brand at networking functions instead of yourself. Manifest those relationships online.

Fake It ‘Till You Make It

And of course, while all this RCS benefits you on Google, remember that each carries its own benefit. When you act like a real company, doing real company stuff, it’s amazing how fast you’ll become a real company. Don’t shoot these tactics down because the ROI isn’t as high as other channels – becoming a real company isn’t an option anymore.

About AJ

AJ Wilcox is the online marketing manager for Domo, a business intelligence software as a service company. He’s an avid runner and automotive fanatic. When he’s not reading about SEO, he’s probably hanging with his 2 kids, or working on his go-kart. He currently resides in Utah, and dreams of one day competing in a destruction derby.


Dr_Evil-google

Google Getting Greedier

Over the past few months I’ve noticed Google becoming more and more greedy with data. A few examples:

  • October 18, 2011: (not provided) – Google announces that users logged in to their Google account will be defaulted to the SSL version. This was done for the sake of “user privacy” and Google said it would affect While this initially affected less than 10% of searches, it has been escalating. Recently Mike Blumenthal reported that 60% of his keywords are now not provided.
  • SERPs with only 7 organic results – This week I read posts from Larry Kim of Wordstream and Dr. Pete of SEOmoz about the increasing number of SERPs that only display 7 organic results on the first page. While most users may never notice, there are 3 sites that can’t be happy about getting knocked to page 2. But Google is happy because that’s 3 less chances of a click not generating revenue.
  • September 5, 2012: DoubleClick Ad Planner loses data – Per the email Google sent me, this is what the change means for me “You can no longer research domains or ad placements that are not part of the Google Display Network and some demographic data will not be available including Keywords Searched For, Videos Also Watched, HouseHold Income and Education.” Of course that information wasn’t helpful Google. Argh.

 

Why This Bothers Me

Google is famous for the motto “Do No Evil”.
Avarice (greed) is one of the 7 deadly sins.
In my mind sin involves a certain level of evil, therefore Google getting greedy represents a breach of their company motto.

Would Google Violate Their Motto?

Usually I would have said no, but the reasons are just too simple here to ignore. You just have to follow the money:

  • Obfuscating search query data through (not provided) means that site owners can no longer leverage their analytics for keyword data. How CAN they get keyword data? AdWords.
  • Reducing the organic listings on page 1 of the SERPs means 3 less opportunities for a click to leave the page without Google making money on it.
  • Taking information out of the DoubleClick Ad Planner is the same idea as (not provided). Instead of giving the data away for free, you tuck it away and provide it, through advertising reps, to paying AdWords customers.

There. I said it. Google is being greedy and evil. What do you think?


JesseWillms-Google-PPC-Success-post341

Google Fails Its Own PPC

While doing a little competitive research this morning we here at Trafficado ran a Google search for “SEO” to see who was ranking and who was advertising. Pretty standard protocol. However, the PPC ad from AdWords caught our eye (ever since the whole [not provided] fiasco broke out). Here is what we saw:

Google SEO SERP

Our curiosity got the better of us and we clicked the ad to see what Google had for us. Behold the most EPIC PPC FAIL:

Google 404