SEO, Small Things & Thinking Like A Spider: +Get Social Health Interview
Really enjoyed +Janet Kennedy
's #podcast #interview
with me about being an #epatient
. After Janet published the post it was impossible to find on Google.
Janet's original blog post had the number of the program at the far left. Many people may not realize +WordPress
titles = your #seo
title UNLESS you use the "rewrite" tools WP has.
Janet and +Get Social Health
were creating an archiving system to help know the program order. +Phil Buckley
noticed the SEO flaw immediately. By placing 009 in front of the programs keywords Google thought Janet wanted to rank for "009" instead of terms such as:
* Crowdfunding Cancer Research.
* Martin Smith (good luck with that one btw lol).
* Get Social Health.
* Curing Cancer.
etc...Thinking Like A Spider
Code Google and other search engines use to index the web is called a "spider" since it "crawls". Google's spiders act like spiders in the world too.
Ever watched a spider toss long silky threads out, catch a branch and then trapeze over to a new web location? Your and my and everyone we knows links are those long silky "content catchers", the ladder spiders use to discover and "read" our content.
I learned a tip at SEO Guru +Bruce Clay, Inc.
years ago. Use accessibility tools to "see" you content like a spider sees it. Find a list of these tools here: http://www.w3.org/WAI/ut3/ER/existingtools.html#Evaluation
Spiders don't really "read" your content they channel it (lol). Spiders are looking for words they understand - #keywords
and signals that increase / decrease importance of keywords (meta, image alt text, body copy, tags like H1 and H2).
The most important meta information is a page's title and that's what Janet flipped when she put 009 in front of her keywords. I shared Phils comment and Janet fixed her post title and so changed the URL of the post.
THE RUB is when you change your URL you wipe any social shares clean. Tweets and Facebook were wiped. +Google+
wasn't reset and I'm not sure why (anyone?). Connection to make is WP post title = URL. You can have a different URL than your visible title.
SO, Janet could have changed her title and kept the old URL. Only problem with that is it doesn't fix the problem - 009 being at the front of the URL. Janet had no choice but to scrub the URL and so trigger a social media tool reset.
And that okay. The value of the URL OVER TIME is too great to continue to try to rank for "009". Better to change, take the hit and rebuild going forward. You could 301 redirect old URL to new (NEVER and I mean NEVER under any circumstance use a 302 temporary redirect as that tag has been crushed by overuse by spammers back it the day.
Redirecting the URL protects old links and new traffic not social media widgets that won't process the redirect (in my experience). If anyone knows a #smm
widget capable of handling a 301 please share. Loss of social shares is painful, but gain of balanced keyword URL is with the pain. Google doesn't own or drink directly from Twitter or Facebook so getting your URL right even if it means tossing 30 or 40 shares is the right thing to do.Thinking Like Visitors & Spiders First
This is the real #art
of SEO. We call the ballet between keywords and content "matching the hatch". When I learned to fly fish they taught me to be aware of the natural world. If you see stoneflies hatching tie on a stonefly.
Same idea with keywords. The way you "fish" with keywords is to evaluate THEM before you talk about YOU. Janet was thinking about creating an archive system and that's a good idea just not as the first "keyword" in her URL.
Good general rule is don't use internal tags externally. When YOUR language tries to beat THEIR use of keywords as summarized on Google you lose. When you "match the hatch" of your keywords to search patterns you are more likely to win.
But there is a rub there too.
Looking at search volume, # searches per month, you have to THINK about if your term is generic and so falsely inflated. There are a lot of keywords that LOOK like they have a lot of monthly searches when in fact they have NONE or none useful to you.
"book" has 1B documents returned. It may have hundreds of thousands of searches and I bet no one pays very much for the keyword (a sure sign no one can figure out how to make money with a word is LOW PPC cost). Book costs $1.23 (higher than I thought and that speaks to fools and their #ppc
money are easily parted lol).
Here are 5 reasons "book" is a useless term despite the 110,000 searches it gets a month:
* Amazon (raned #1 for me).
* Google (so a 1, 2 punch).
* Even if you, by some miracle RANKED on page 1 you still don't convert because someone typing "book" into Google (all 110,000 of 'em) doesn't know what they really want yet and that is why generic terms like "book" will always be owned by GIANTS who are buying so much ad inventory and have so much content they blot out the sun (or your sun anyway).
* Competition (actually a mirage, bet there is less competition than it appears but doesn't matter because YOU aren't going to win or get close to winning this one since the deck is so stacked. If you ever win a term like this and you use an agency FIRE THEM since they've put you and your site as risk of being banned).
* No Money - the logistical content and collaboration plan needed to win this term CAN'T PAY FOR ITSELF. The web is all arbitrage all the time, so you COULD win the term. To do so would take MILLIONS and generate the cost of coffee so we suggest NOT doing that (lol);.
There are other reasons like the float, the coming semantic web and stuff we could tell you but then would have to lock you in a room for a long time, but "book" provides a great example of how not all keywords with search volume matter.
Good news for Janet is, despite the image below showing her old title, her post now comes up for my "float" on "crowdfunding cancer research". Janet and I are connected and that's why I see the post when you probably won't.
And that is the significant gain of getting the URL right. Janet just used her first and most powerful SEO weapon correctly - her own network as expressed through Google's float. Before, when I typed "crowdfundig cancer research" the way I thought of the content it didn't show up due to the "009". Now it does.
Great job by Janet in this interview and listening careful to Phil. Remember WP titles = URLs unless you craft a different one so make your titles keyword rich and you too will be able to use the network you've worked so hard to build.