Jan 21, 2007 @ 6:15 pm in Uncategorized by 0

SEO and SMO – The Common Factors

Lately I have been pondering over the concept of SMO ( Social Media Optimization ) and SEO and what exactly is common in them. It goes without saying, there are two main factors that are actually common for SEO and SMO.

  1. Content
  2. Links

Yes, while, SMO or social media optimization is all about increasing the linkability of your website , all of us who have had a love-hate relationship with the search engines do know that one thing that search engines love without an exception is links. So Links are important for BOTH !

Now, if you would notice the two-point list that I have mentioned above mentions “Content” as point (a) and “links” as (b) – that was intentional! Because – you get links only and only if you have good content. So CONTENT comes first !Also, I would like to point out that while creating your content for SMO, make sure you put a Title that grabs the attention.It has been observed that articles and write ups with attractive titles and lists ( top 10, top 50, last 5 etc) gets bookmarked more easily.

For proper SEO success you need to have good optimized content on your website but for SMO its not just enough to have good content – you need to increase the linkability of the content.Provide your visitors with easy to link options. They are actually trying to help you by linking to your content so why not help them to help you by making your pages easy to link. A great tool for creating social bookmarks can be found at Social Bookmarks to enhance SMO effort

Now, when we talk about links, we all know

  1. Search engines love links – the more inbound links you have, the better it is for you.
  2. Social Media Optimization increases the linkability of your content and efficient SMO can get you huge number of links.

Keeping this two points in mind, we can easily derive that SMO can actually work as an effective tool for successful SEO. As an additional bonus, the type of links that a site gets through Social media optimization also drives loads of traffic unlike the exchanged links dug deep inside some links.html or linkpartners.php page, that are often a part of typical SEO process.

While there are people discussing if SMO is going to replace SEO, besides, being a great traffic source, SMO can actually be the means to successful SEO.SMO demands good content and those good content is going to get linked. Now once, you have got content and you have got enough links to that content – do you think you need much more for SEO success ? yes, you need to add the salt, pepper and seasonings to serve just the perfect dish that those BIg three ( Google, Yahoo, MSN ) would love but the foundation to your SEO success has already been laid by your SMO initiatives.

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog

    Jan 15, 2007 @ 8:14 am in Uncategorized by 10

    Social Media Optimization – Two More Rules for SMO

    Social Media Marketing has been doing the rounds amoung Internet marketers and Rohit Bhargava of Ogilvy Public Relations has given it a kick start with his 5 Rules of Social Media Optimization (SMO)

    He has lucidly explained the concept as

    “The concept behind SMO is simple: implement changes to optimize a site so that it is more easily linked to, more highly visible in social media searches on custom search engines (such as Technorati), and more frequently included in relevant posts on blogs, podcasts and vlogs.”

    Further contributions to the list of 5 rules was done by

    Jeremiah Owyang – Rules of Social Media Optimization
    Cameron Olthuis – Introduction to Social Media Optimization
    Loren Baker – Social Media Optimization : 13 Rules of SMO
    Lee Odden – New Rules for Social Media Optimization

    Here’s a brief list of all the rules that we have got on Social Media Optimisation till now :

    1. Increase your linkability
    2. Make tagging and bookmarking easy
    3. Reward inbound links
    4. Help your content travel
    5. Encourage the mashup
    6. Be a User Resource, even if it doesn’t help you
    7. Reward helpful and valuable users
    8. Participate
    9. Know how to target your audience
    10. Create content
    11. Be real
    12. Don’t forget your roots, be humble
    13. Don’t be afraid to try new things, stay fresh
    14. Develop a SMO strategy
    15. Choose your SMO tactics wisely
    16. Make SMO part of your process and best practices

    After reading through all these 16 rules in details, it inspired me to add the following two :

    17) Encourage new participants : “Social media optimization” as the name suggests is a social process and as with any social process, it would be most beneficial and effective with increasing number of participants. Lee Odden sited,

    “According to Hans Peter Brondmo of Plum during the SES San Jose session “Marketing with Social Media“, 1% of those involved with social media are creating content, 10% will enrich that content and 90% will consume it.”

    Now the 10% enriching the content and the 90% consuming it are actually depending on the 1% who are creating the content.So if the existing participants in this process can encourage each other to take up the role of “content creator” or atleast secondary contributors ( who enrich the content) this will inturn increase the total numberof participants in the social media optimization process making it more effective for everyone involved with it.

    18) SMO should be a continuous process : For any company to actually benefit from SMO, they should make it a continuous process. While we all understand that SMO is most effective in creating buzz, we need to understand that these buzz that is created has a particular life cycle and is bound to die out at a certain point of time.In order to sustain this buzz we need to continuously fuel it with more linkable contents, more participation and application of the priniciples explained in the previous rules.

    just my 2 cents 🙂

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog

    Jan 5, 2007 @ 1:17 pm in Uncategorized by 2

    Internal Links – They Are Important !

    Links, Links and Links !! Most of the Internet entrepreneurs who have atleast some idea about the search engines are often engrossed about links. Yes, Links do play a very important role to affect a website’s search engine rankings and the business it does. However, in most cases, I have seen that webmasters are more concerned about getting inbound links from external sites and often tend to ignore the internal links.

    We need to understand while external links are important, internal links are actually the life line of any web based business.

    As a webmaster you would definitely want your visitors to be able to visit every part of your website and for that they need a easy navigation path. Your need to set up your internal links in a way that they guide your visitors in a logical path throughout the website. Though a cool flash menu or an equally atractive Javascript menu might be pretty interesting for some visitors, think about those visitors whose browser do not support scripts or flash – It is most important that you provide a simple HTML links for all your pages.

    Besides, this ensures that search engine bots are also able to crawl your site properly. Search Engines hate flash or JavaScripts and they would not crawl the links you set in them. Feed the bots with plain HTML links and your pages will definitely be indexed.

    To add to it, if you are using suitable anchor texts to link to relevant pages that adds more value to your internal links. For example, in your site about Widgets, you can have a particular page about Red Widgets – linking to that page using the text “Red Widgets” is much more beneficial compared to using “Widgets1” or “Other Widgets” etc for the anchor text. This helps your visitors to understand where the link leads them to and also the page gets benefit in terms of search engine positioning.

    In addition to enhancing the navigation system and facilitating search engines to crawl the site properly, your links can also help to increase your conversion – Yes, Links can affect your sales.

    Think of a big retail shop, you have just picked a shirt that you like and have almost made up your mind to buy it but you dont see a salesman anywhere — you might just consider looking for a few other shirts and in the process forget about the one you thought you would buy 🙁 Yes – this happens in web too !!

    If you want to increase your conversion add links stratezically; if there’s a page giving small intro about the various products you sell make sure all of them have a link directly to the page that gives details about the products and from there it should have a prominent link to the order page.Make your links attractive and easy to recognize so that more people clicks on it.

    When I say, “Make your links attractive and easy to recognize” – I really don’t mean something flashy or zazzy.. it has been observed that most Internet users are more likely to click on the same old Blue Underlined Links compared to the fancy ones that we blend in with other content using our CSS skills.From the advent of Internet that was how a link used to look originally and in my opinion its basic e-ntuition that people tend to click or hover their mouse over any Blue and underlined text on the web. I am sure most of you have already done that to the above phrase , even though it is not linked.

    Dan gives a lot of good stuff on this and also how to track which links are more effective for your website. He has mentioned quiet a few analytics tools and stresses a bit on measuring “average page views per visitors”, though click through rate on a link is probably a more accurate measure for the links effectiveness (because a page may be accessible through multiple links and you might just change the link at one place for testing purpose). I personally find Google Analytics pretty handy for this. The “Site OverLay” link found under Executive Summary section will show you the click through rate for any link on a particular page of Your website. You can very easily compare the click through rates on a link blended using CSS and later by putting it back to the blue and underlined form.It is important that you do the testing on a measurable amount of traffic (atleast 1000 visitors) to get proper identifiable results.

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog

    Nov 28, 2006 @ 10:25 am in Uncategorized by 2

    Search Engine’s Track Your Activities – Is That Possible Jim ?

    Recently I came across a great article about link exchange by Jim Hedger here. While I do think that this is probably one of the best articles in web on this subject, however, there is a points on which I fail to agree with Jim.

    In his article Jim has mentioned,

    “As search users travel across linked pages, the search engines track how much time users spends on linked pages and the pathways they take when leaving a document.”

    To my understanding, in order to track this information, Google or for that matter any search engine would need to track the visitor’s IP address and record the pages that are being accessed from that IP. They also need to record the time duration for which a particular website is being accessed in order to judge for how long a visitor is on that site.

    They can do this only when they are installing a cookie or implementing some similar functioning technology that would track the activities on that particular machine and send that information to them.

    If we consider that the search engines are implementing such a technology, aren’t they violating privacy rights ? are they allowed to track the user’s machine or IP address for that matter ?

    I am pretty sure that most search engines claim that they do not violate the privacy rights and do not track activities on user’s PC without their consent.

    Now, if we are to believe them, Jim’s comment in his article (as quoted above) does not hold water.

    I have posted this question in one of the SEO forums, where most users have appreciated Jim’s article ( Jim is also a member in this forum and has visited the thread before) but till now I haven’t received any explanation about this from Jim or any other veteran members who have appreciated the articles. I also plan to mail the site that has published this article, in case I do, I will post the mail in this blog and if there is a reply from them.

    In case any of you people feel that you have an explanation for this please feel free to shoot !

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog

    May 4, 2013 @ 8:07 am in SEO by 0

    Penalties For Duplicate Content Issues

    A phenomenal truth for ranking good in the SE’s is feeding them with unique and quality content. Search Engines are always in search of good content related to your business or domain. “Content is the King” has been a well known proverbial phrase in the SEO community.

    Search Engines dislike duplicated content and penalize them mainly due to two reasons: First, they don’t want to show the same pages in their search results. And secondly, they don’t want to spend the resources in indexing pages that are substantially similar. Read More >>

    May 4, 2013 @ 8:07 am in SEO by 1

    Some Basics of SEO

    Basics Of Search Engine Optimization

    What are Search Engines?

    Search Engines are Websites that enables users to search for information on the internet based on the keywords that they provide. Some of these websites gather information from all across the World Wide Web and furnish them to the user in the order of importance and relevance that it assigns each page based on the entered keyword.
    Search engines use specialized softwares that take the search term you ask for and deliver a list of web pages that are deemed most relevant to what you search for. Each search engine maintains a huge database of millions of web pages.

    Search Engine Optimization

    What Is SEO?
    SEO: The Acronym for Search Engine Optimization.

    Search Engine Optimization is an expression used to describe the process/technique of preparing a webpage/website to enhance its chances of being positioned on the top of the Search Engine Results Pages for a partiucular search query or keyword. The SEO process is undertaken based on the study of various factors and algorithms the different Search Engines employ in order to rank the pages for the query terms.

    The Major Search Engines And Directories

    Search Engine’s:

    What’s Google?
    “Googol” is the mathematical term for a 1 followed by 100 zeros. The term was coined by Milton Sirotta, nephew of American mathematician Edward Kasner, and was popularized in the book,”Mathematics and the Imagination” by Kasner and James Newman. Google’s play on the term reflects the company’s mission to organize the immense amount of information available on the web.

    Search Directories:

    Oct 10, 2006 @ 1:00 pm in Uncategorized by 2

    SEO for Begineers – How To Find The Right Keywords

    From my experience, I have seen it is very difficult for freshers to learn about SEO. The
    major problem that they face is information overload and being new to this trade most
    freshers are unable to distinguish between ethical and proper SEO methods and stinky spam
    techniques. Unfortunately, though the internet is overloaded with SEO information,site’s
    providing information on how to spam search engines are more easily available than the ones
    that teach about proper SEO methods. From this line of thought I have made up my mind to put up short write ups on this blog about different aspects of Search engine optimization, in
    plain and simple language that can be understood by newbies – yes, the very basics only and
    if you can grasp this, you can definitely climb your way up the ladder.

    One of the first thing that people should learn while considering SEO is how to find the
    right keywords.

    There are ample tools available on the web that help SEOs with keyword research, however, it
    is often noticed that people fail to identify the proper keywords. The most common mistakes
    that people do is that they target the keywords that show maximum number of hits.But that is
    not the only thing a SEO should look at while search for target keywords.

    There are two main factors that any SEO should consider while choosing his keywords for
    optimization of any website.a) The number of hits for that keywordb) The competition on that keywordc) Most importantly, how closely is that keyword related to his site and what is the
    possibility of conversion.

    Generally, the keywords with maximum hits will have maximum competition, however,if you can dig deep into the keywords and analyze your website properly, you are sure to find keywords that are very specific to your niche. These keywords have manyfold advantages :a) As they are specific to your niche, the chance of conversion is very highb) These keywords generally have a lower competition, with not so low number of hits. As a result these keywords are easy to optimize for and get results and also once you have optimised a website for such keywords the conversion rate for your site is also most likely to increase.

    For example, if you are a Tourist Guide in Kolkata it wont be of any help to you to optimize for a keyword like “Tourist Guide” – of course this keyword is going to have much more hits compared to niche keywords like “Tourist Guide in Kolkata” – however, people searching for “Tourist guides in Kolkata” are more likely to be interested in your service than someone searching for “Tourist Guide”. So it is definitely beneficial for you to optimize for “tourist guide in Kolkata”.

    The objective of a SEO keyword research should be to find keywords for which the competition is low but number of hits is high. To judge these two parameters for different keywords on a even platform SEOs use a Formula called KEI or Keyword Effectiveness Index. To put in very simple word this is a ratio that identified the most effective keywords.Originally invented by Sumantra Roy – this formula has been modified by various SEOs at times.

    The higher the KEI for a keyword, the better it is.

    The KEI formula can be represented as given below:

    P = popularity of the keyword
    C = Competition for that keyword.

    This formula is based on three axioms.

    a) If the popularity of a keyword (p) increases the KEI should increase.If value of p increases, p^2/C will definitely increase.

    b) if the competition for the keyword (C) increases the KEI should decrease . If value of C increases, p^2/C decreases.

    c) If both popularity and competition of a keyword increases the KEI should increase.If both the value increases, the value of p^2/C is sure to increase.If P and C increases such that P/C is same as before p^2/C = p/C*p is sure to increase.

    In his original formula he has defined competition as the number of sites that Altavista displays for a keyword when you search for a keyword using a Exact match search (keyword within “”) and populrity as the figure displayed in the “Count” column of Wordtracker for that keyword.

    However, in my opinion, it is better to take the competition figure from Google because in most cases they display the maximum number of results for any keywords and the popularity figure from Overture (http://inventory.overture.com/ ) because Overture network receives much more hits/month compared to the meta Crawler/Infospace database used by wordtracker.
    KEI is definitely a good way to start your keyword research but it is most oimportant that your keywords are absolutely related to your niche.

    I hope this helps you to understand the basics of Keyword Research, in case you have any questions please feel free to shoot a mail, I will love to be of any help to you.

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog

    Oct 2, 2006 @ 7:25 pm in Uncategorized by 2

    SEO Kolkata Today – How It all began…

    I can’t help but believe in destiny when I think of the way I got into SEO. Around five years back, when I took up my first job on Internet marketing and SEO here in Kolkata, I hardly had any clue about what is SEO, or how to optimize a website..for that matter, at that point of time there were very few people in kolkata who knew anything about SEO.

    Though I had a First Class in my Hotel Mgmt course and also a job offer from Hyatt Regency, Kolkata, I just felt that hoteleering is not for me .. I was kind of frustrated with rejections from otherjobs (mostly call centers) and was looking for an alternative avenue when I came across the advertisement from 123greetings.com – they were looking for people in their internet marketing team and i made it through with them– then it all began..

    It was just three of us at that point and then everyday new members joined their marketing team and the only way we could know about SEO , link exchange and other internet marketing was to study..yes, that is something I hate, but I had to.. and surprisingly enough, I was never bored studying about SEO, Inetrnet marketing, link exchange and related stuff.. (even today!). That was a golden opportunity….being one of the pioneer members of the SEO and internet marketing team of 123greetings.com gave me a lot of scope to study and experiement and learn the basics.

    While doing this job, I got some offers from other smaller web dev companies in Kolkata and started working as a freelance SEO / SEO consultant with them. But the money was too less.. 🙁 I am sure most freshers today would prefer to sit back at home rather than working for someone for such a meager salary.. so I was in dilemma, I loved SEO but I needed more money and atlast the hunt was on.. I needed a new job….

    Cracked interviews with some call centers and moved on to work with them but didn’t give up on SEO, I was working as a SEO consultant/ SEO freelancer for the Kolkata based web development companies..and always kept myself updated about the changes and updates in the search engines. I spent a nice time in Call centers in Mumbai (almost 2 years), earned good money.. but my heart was lying in something else , I wanted to come back to SEO and Internet marketing…

    In October 2004 when I was back in Kolkata for a vacation, one of the companies, Digital Avenues, for which I used to freelance as SEO offered me to join them as a full timer. The offer was there for me for the last 6 months but I never gave it a thought but this time.. they had something really good to offer.. in addition, I was allured by the options of working as a full time SEO as well as staying in my favorite city Kolkata.. thought about the whole thing for a couple of days and then I agreed.

    That again marked the beginning of a new chapter in my career and life.. I started working on something that I love to do– had a lot of challenges to win.. and eventually things started to work out.. With decent SEO success on the initial inhouse projects like My Corporate Logo, we started getting external projects which turned out equally successful and now we have a project coming in almost every 15 days. Tiil today I am with Digital Avenues.. from a one member SEO team now we have a growing SEO team of 6 members and am sure there’s lot to look forward to..

    Read more on SEO at SEO Consultant India Blog