What is a Keyword?

A Keyword refers to a word, phrase or sentence used in online search. (in a nutshell, whatever you would type into google’s search query box)

A Keyword can be a short-tail keyword (can be as short as a word) or a long-tail keyword (could be a phrase or a sentence). Short-tail keywords are broader (i.e. television). Long-tail keywords are more specific, and make for much more targeted searches and results (i.e. sony 55″ lcd bravia television best price). 70% of all searches performed are Long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords also catch people when they are closer to purchasing something.

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Google Algorithm Updates: Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird and More

Panda: Feb 23, 2011

The first major algorithm change affected roughly 12% of searches. It focused on quality and user experience. It cracked down on thin content sites, content farms, and sites with too many advertisements in proportion to amount of content, etc. This was an all-out assault on web content. It looked for the amount and quality of content that appeared ‘above the fold’.  THAT SAID: your quality content should start as close to the top of the webpage as possible. And don’t clutter your site. Content must be well-written, well-researched and error-free. You must take the time to answer questions — in the best possible manner.

Penguin: April 24, 2012

This was the next in a string of algorithm adjustments, affecting about 4% of search results. It targeted those who were severely over-optimizing their content, for example using ‘Black Hat SEO’ (stealth) techniques such as keyword stuffing, hidden text, sneaky re-directs, etc – BUT it also went further than that. It also targeted Link Schemes (i.e artificial links). Google used a formulaic approach to find the artificial links, i.e. if you went from 10 to 10,000 links in one month. Penalized sites were sent to google’s Sand Box, where sites were punished by going to the bottom of the rankings.

Hummingbird: August 30, 2013

After the dust settled on the prior adjustments, google released its latest big algorithm update, which focused on contextual search and the semantics of search. It moved away from indexing for specific keywords and moved towards more LSI (Latent Symantic Indexing) — comparing words based on mathematical computations —  so that google can ‘understand’ words and their relationships (i.e. Best Diet Tips = Nutrition Advice for Weight Loss).  It also moved toward understanding questions and their answer (i.e. what is the weather in NY). In a nutshell, this was a complete overhaul of google search — it affected 90% of searches on google.

Mobilegeddon: announced in late April 2015

Impacted 60% of all searches but has far reaching implications. Web design needs to take mobile into account, as well as tablets, etc.  This is going to be an important factor going forward. You must approach your site with a design perspective as well as a content perspective. Your site must work well on all browsers AND all devices including Phones and Tablets.

What is a SERP?

Simple… it’s a:

Search Engine Results Page

In other words it’s the list that you see when you ‘google’ something

Adding a Blogroll or Blog List

Three simple steps:

Step One: (Add a Link ‘Category’ to your Page)
(the Link Category that you are adding here will eventually show up in the Widget that you are going to add later in Step Three)

1) In your Dashboard, via the Left Nav Bar: click on ‘Links’, then click on ‘Link Categories’

2) Add a Link Category called “Blog Roll” or “Class Blogs” or “More Blogs” or something similar; you can also add an optional description (i.e. favorite blogs, or blogs I read, or simply Blog Roll)

Step Two: (Adding links to your blog roll)
(the blog links that you are adding here will eventually show up in the Widget that you are going to add later in Step Three)

1) In your Dashboard, via the Left Nav Bar: click ‘Links’, then click ‘Add New’

2) Add the actual name of the blog that you want to appear in your Blog Roll (i.e. Classic Movie Hub), then add the url (i.e. https://www.classicmoviehub.com), and add an optional description

3) Scroll down and ‘check’ the Category called “Blog Roll” (or whatever you named the Category that you just added in Step One). PLEASE NOTE that, until you add a link here, you will not see anything appear in the Link Widget that you will be adding below in Step Three

Step Three: (Add the Link Widget to your page)
(This is where you actually add the Widget itself, and since you’ve already addressed Step One and Step Two, everything will ‘magically’ appear after you successfully add the Widget)

1) In your Dashboard, via the Left Nav Bar: click ‘Appearance’, then click ‘Widgets’ (if your interface doesn’t show ‘Appearance’ in the Left Nav Bar, look for ‘Menu’ there and click that; then you should see the Left Nav Bar with ‘Appearance’)

2) Scroll down the Widgets page until you see a Widget called ‘Links’ (in the Available Widgets section) — and drag that ‘Links’ widget into your Primary Widget Area (upper right-hand side of page on most interfaces); Note: some interfaces won’t allow you to drag the widget, instead you will see an add/plus button on the upper right-hand side of the widget, so click that to add it to your Primary Widget Area.

3) Once your ‘Link’ Widget is in place in the Primary Widget Area, click on the little arrow on the upper-right-hand side of the widget so that the widget box opens up. You will see a field where you can add a title (optional) and you will see a drop down list. That drop down list will contain the Category that you added in Step One. Choose that Category and hit Save at the bottom of the widget.

That’s it!  You have now added your Links Widget that contains your Blogroll to your blog.

Blogging – Outreach

So, why bother adding a Blog Roll to your Blog?

Because the blog you are linking to will see it — and hopefully return the favor with a reciprocal link.

So, why bother commenting on other people’s Blogs?

Because the blog you’re commented on will check you out.  If they like your blog, they will link back to you.

IN A NUTSHELL: IT’S ALL PART OF THE ONGOING PROCESS OF BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS… THE SAME REASON YOU RETWEET OTHER PEOPLE’S TWEETS, SHARE OTHER PEOPLE’S FACEBOOK PAGES, ETC. — YOU WANT THEM TO GET TO KNOW YOU — AND IF YOU ARE CONSISTENT WITH THIS IN A GOOD WAY (i.e. not just spamming junk) THEY WILL GET TO KNOW YOU.

Adding a Archives Widget to your Blog

Adding an Archives Widget to your blog…

1) In your Dashboard, via the Left Nav Bar: click ‘Appearance’, then click ‘Widgets’ (if your interface doesn’t show ‘Appearance’ in the Left Nav Bar, look for ‘Menu’ there and click that; then you should see the Left Nav Bar with ‘Appearance’)

2) Scroll down the Widgets page until you see a Widget called ‘Archives’ (in the Available Widgets section) — and drag that ‘Archives’ widget into your Primary Widget Area (upper right-hand side of page on most interfaces); Note: some interfaces won’t allow you to drag the widget, instead you will see an add/plus button on the upper right-hand side of the widget, so click that to add it to your Primary Widget Area.

3) Once your ‘Archives’ Widget is in place in the Primary Widget Area, click on the little arrow on the upper-right-hand side of the widget so that the widget box opens up. Please click/choose the option that says ‘Show Count’ — and ‘Save’.

That’s it!  You have now added your Archives Widget to your blog.

Google Analytics vs WordPress Analytics

Please remember to check out your WordPress Analytics… There you will see:

1) Referrers — how people are coming to your blog (for example, how many people are coming from twitter, facebook, google, or a particular blog or website)

2) What country they’re coming from

3) What posts they’re visiting

4) Search Terms: What keywords they’re using to find you

Now, even though you cannot connect your wordpress.com blog to Google Analytics, you need to know what Google Analytics can do for you… You can use Google Analytics if you have a wordpress.org blog, a blogger blog (blogger is owned by Google), or a website…

1) Referrers – how people are coming to your blog (same as above)

2) What country they’re coming from — but also what state, and what city!

3) What posts (or webpages) they’re visiting (same as above)

4) What keywords they’re using to find you (same as above)

5) How long they’re staying on your site

6) How many pages they’re viewing in one session

7) Returning vs New Visitors

8) Bounces — who visits a page and IMMEDIATELY leaves

9) You can even see everything in ‘Real Time’ — as it happens

10) If you also happen to be running Google Advertising, you can see results