My Newest Project!

I’m currently in the process of providing fully integrated websites with matching domain and WordPress blogs that come with a social media following across the board on every major channel (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram). I’ve been working to only using white hat strategies, and my goal is to provide every amazing web package fully optimized in it’s SEO through Google Analytics and Adsense.

 

This means that I’m do all the back-end work- work that’s often time-consuming and tedious for most professionals. By freeing up that time for my clients, they are then able to enjoy the revenue stream that their growing web package and social media presence provides them- that comes from me!

 

I do the work, you reap the benefits. Simple.

 

I’m partnering exclusively through Flippa.com and I’m very excited! My very first listing is live right now– feel free to check it out HERE.

The Algorithm Circle Of Love – How To Improve Your Google Ranking NOW!

How to improve the Google search ranking for your ideas or business~

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I’ve broken down into brief snippets a blog post by: Jane and Scot Noel ** about what is needed for your web site to rank higher in the “Google machine” (that’s what I like to call it!). This is a very important post and one well-worth reading! I’ve summarized all the important points at the bottom, so if you are busy and just want to get there, you can… BUT, I truly believe it will be worth it to read the guest post, then see what I have to say…

mysteryTo the business owner with a website, what happens in a Google search is a mystery.  Why doesn’t your site show up when you do a search?  What’s the magic formula for getting to the top of Google?  It feels like there must be a simple secret that no one’s talking about?  Right?

Breaking Your Site Down, by the Numbers

secretYou bet it is! When trying to get your website noticed in Google, there is a formula, it’s a well kept secret, and there’s nothing simple about it.

Instead of the word “formula,” let’s say “algorithm.”  An algorithm is a set of rules or a process followed in a problem solving operation.  In this case, the algorithm belongs to Google, and the problem is how to evaluate websites and use them in answering online searches.

Of course the process is entirely automated, performed by computer programs that constantly evaluate and re-evaluate your website along with everyone else’s.  It goes on all day long, every day.  And the kind of things the Google algorithm looks for include your website’s age, the information it contains, and inbound links.

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The parts that are underlined, bolded and colored red are the main points that I will touch on at the bottom. I would like to propose an idea that can help boost your ranking, increase your traffic, and give you more sales! I’m going to make it easy and fun…

1. How Old is Your Domain Name?young

Just as adults are given more respect than children, older domain names (www.mycompany.com) get points just for being old.  They’ve been around the block.  They haven’t gone out of business.  If two websites are equal in every other way, but one is older, the “mature” website will get preference in a Google search.

2. How Informative is Your Website?

contentMany people don’t want a lot of words cluttering up their website.  That’s all well and good, but then they shouldn’t expect great success in the world of online search.  Searches are not popularity contests that go to the prettiest webpage.

From Google’s point of view, their search engine is answering someone’s question.  Therefore if you are looking for a “Custom Home Builder in Pittsburgh,” for example, the site that presents only pretty pictures of custom homes takes a back seat to the one that is informative about the process of acquiring a custom home, and also happens to mention that they are in Pittsburgh.

How much content do you need?  There is no set number of pages or words, but if you want to show up above your competition, you’d better check them out.  If they have 15 pages of professionally written, informative content, averaging 200-300 words per page, and you have 2 pages, 50 words each, that you wrote yourself – well, you just lost that match.

[Here’s the kicker ——->>>>>>] Google favors well-produced content, and the algorithm reads through the content to find keywords, keyword phrases, and their synonyms.  It considers whether the page is “keyword stuffed,” or if the language flows naturally and is informative on its subject.

imagesS22MMREVAs best we know, the algorithm analyzes whether the keywords are used in headlines, links, bullet points, key sentences, etc.  Point by point, the Google algorithm breaks down your content by the numbers and compares it against all the sites competing against you.

By now you may be getting the idea that the only magic formula here is hard work and finding a good writer.  But even content is only a part of what the algorithm is looking for.

3. Who are Your Friends and Neighbors?

wallflowerIf your website is shy, just hanging out there on its own, it may get about the same attention from Google as the wallflower at a High School dance.  The Google algorithm counts every other website that links to yours.

Then it starts figuring out who your friends and neighbors are.

If a respected and authoritative site links to your website, that’s great!  An example might be the New York Times with an online article about your business that provides a link to your website.  There would be a lot of respect (and search value) given to your site for having such a link.

But if your website hangs out with the wrong crowd, where links were purchased by the hundreds from some fake business directories overseas just to make your site look important, then you’re going to be in trouble.

linkingFor most of us, the truth is somewhere in between.  You should certainly have links coming to your site from your own social media pages, including the likes of Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and others, depending on what is appropriate in your line of work. You may also have incoming links from your local Chamber of Commerce, trade association, municipal website, a local business directory, etc.

Over time, bloggers and other site owners will find your website and link to it just because they see it offers something useful to their audience. What they find of interest may be an article, case study, a specific product or service, or even some basic information of value to their audience.

Of course, if you want to affect Google’s opinion of your site by acquiring great links and cutting away possible bad ones, you’ll need some professional help.  That process is generally called Link Building, and it can be as complex and time consuming as any good marketing effort.

4. When Websites Shut the Door, or Send Wrong Signals

homeWhen the Google bots come to your website and say, “Hey, nice to meet you, we’re here to help the algorithm learn about your website, can we come in?” does your website slam the door and say “Go away!” If your website is hostile to the process, even great content and good links won’t help you.  We’ve even seen sites engineered (not deliberately we suspect) to appear as a blank page to the Google bots and algorithm.

All websites are not born equal.

Some menu driven systems, coding styles, and basic web development technologies simply don’t work well with Google. They may result in a fine looking, compelling design that customers love, but fewer clients will find you if Google hits a brick wall when it tries to analyze your website.

In general, your web developer needs to create search-friendly site architecture.  At a minimum, this can include such things as CSS style navigation, internal anchor links, image alt-tags, text on the page (not embedded in images or in code like JavaScript), and individually crafted meta-code for each page (including Page Titles, Keyword Tags, and Page Descriptions).

blackSending the wrong signals can be equally problematic.  There are still many developers who attempt “black hat” ways of attracting search engine attention.  These can include invisible text, keyword stuffing, duplicate websites, and much more.  Every day, Google finds ways to shut out such practices, and if your website is caught trying to scheme its way to success, it could take a long time to recover its credibility, if ever!

5. It’s Not the Same Everywhere

Naturally, when you type something into Google and see a page of search results, you assume that everyone who typed in the same thing got the same list of results.  Not so.

you-are-hereYour website is also evaluated for where and to whom it should appear.  At a minimum, Google knows approximately where the person doing the search is located.  If the searcher uses any of Google’s products, from Gmail to Google Docs, or Google+ to YouTube, then Google learns about the search patterns and online habits of the individual doing the search.

And  it modifies its search results accordingly.SEO

No, the results list is not drastically different for everyone at every computer, but the results do shift and the variances do make a difference.  While your Yard Equipment website may show up #1 for “lawn mower parts” locally, it may have no national presence at all.  Or if you use Google+, the search results may give preference to your website when you do a search, but no one else will see that spectacular result.

Obviously, what you see when you search is only part of the answer.  But Google does provide some free and effective tools to give you a sense of how your website is doing online, overall.  Have your webmaster sign up for and install Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools.

6. This is Not your Grandfather’s Google

Zeus-blog-post-keep-calm-follow-the-rulesAnother common misconception about Google is that whatever the rules are, they are THE rules – kind of like the formula for Coke is the formula for Coke.

Not quite.  The engineers at Google are always hard at work adjusting the algorithm, trying to improve search results overall.

Minor tweaks happen all the time, and major updates get cute names like Penguin and Panda (although perhaps they should be named after hurricanes instead).  These changes can and do affect traffic to your site all the time.

Why the changes?  Two primary reasons.  The first is that Google would like to improve search results and make them more relevant and personally useful to everyone who uses a Google search.  The second is to deal with websites that are built with black hat techniques (cheaters) and block them or devalue them in a search.

Unfortunately, no one can say exactly what effect any particular change will have.  Google’s intentions are clear, but the system is far too complex for anyone, even Google, to know the full effects of an algorithm adjustment until it happens.

If adverse consequences happen to too many valid websites, Google may adjust their adjustment.  If the results are beneficial, Google betterwill look for ways to improve them even further.

The bottom line is that if your website was search optimized 3 years ago, even if the techniques used were completely valid then, they are at least partially out of date today.  And what is being done today will need looked at again, sooner rather than later.

7. Summary

So now you know.  Secret formulas called algorithms check out your website and make judgments about where it should show up in a search.

images89EK6GO7These algorithms look at and weigh hundreds of factors, but a few of the major ones are:  the age of your domain, the content of your site, and the number and character of other sites linking to yours. Over time, the algorithms change, sometimes to your benefit, sometimes not.  Keeping up with it all has spawned entire industries, including Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Link Building.

These general concepts apply not only to Google, but to other search engines like Bing, Yahoo, Ask, and others.  For each one, their algorithms represent proprietary formulas (somewhat like the differences between the formulas for Coke and Pepsi).

While we hope this article is instructive, you should keep in mind that it represents an over-simplification.  Nevertheless, it should give you hope that you can take steps to make the Google algorithm look more kindly on your website.  Certainly, your competitors are out there trying…

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So… here we go.

I don’t know if this would be called, “adding my two-cents”… maybe it is. However, I have an idea that I would like to build on with your help based on what I learned in the above article. Keep reading 🙂

imagesEP3K5V1D#1: The Age Of Your Domain – Unfortunately for this one, I have no control over how old your web site domain is. Hopefully, it’s been around a while! If not, get your domain registered NOW. My preference is GoDaddy with whom I purchased my domain for 2 years for under $20 bucks- pretty good deal. Just be sure to Google: GoDaddy promo codes and use one! They will save you money. Once you have your domain, just forward it with masking to your home web site.

expert#2: How Much Content Is Written On Your Web Site – There should be some good, valuable, written content on your site. I hold to a good saying that goes like this, “Write what you know best and link to the rest.” Fortunately for everybody there’s no hard and fast rules when it comes to content. You can hire out for just a few dollars and have someone else write it, or you can do it yourself (to know how to hire out, just ask me HERE and I can tell you how to do this if you are on a very limited budget). Just make sure that you have good, quality content. As mentioned in Part 3 of my marketing series, hit the library and assign yourself a book report. Make yourself an expert on what you know and offer that information up on your site.

heartcircle#3: Link Building – This is where we are going to have some fun! I have a proposal for all my readers. What would you say to creating an “Algorithm Circle Of Love”? I would like to grab a hold of ten of you that are socially plugged in and do some link building based off of part 3 written above! Who’s with me? Let’s write some content for each other and boost our Google page ranking! I’ll post info about you on my top three sites:

          • Facebook
          • LinkedIn
          • My blog (here) and my web site

What are your thoughts on that? Think we can do it? I do!

a-update#4: Optimizing The Pages On Your Web Site – I know that this one was a hard one for me. I was so anxious to get my web site developed and published that I didn’t “baby” the page titles, keyword tags, and page descriptions like I needed to. Neglecting this baby will result in “starving” that search ranking in Google. So, as a tip and trick for y’all, get on your laptop (get off the internet and concentrate) and create a page in Notepad; write out all your keywords and tags. Then, on the next line write up a page title for each page and make sure that it’s good and contains awesome, relevant keywords. Then, write out a brief description for each page; again, incorporating your awesome, relevant keywords.

Once you have that information, login to your account settings for where your web site is being hosted at. Just copy and paste all of your wonderful information into those boxes. Get every single one for each page completely filled out the best that you can. This will help you get found so much better on all the big search platforms!

a-master#5: Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools and Alerts – I did briefly talk about these things in my blog post titled, “Getting Traffic, Growing Your Business – How To Go Viral TODAY!“. So, if you haven’t been utilizing these invaluable tools, make it a point to get going as soon as you can. If you’re super busy, like me, and the rest of the world, don’t be afraid to set an alarm on your phone. Make a date with yourself to devote just one hour to getting these tools implemented for your business.

a-fresh#6: Evergreen “Fresh”! – If it’s been some time since you’ve gone over the information on your web site, whether it’s information we can’t see: like keywords, tags, and page descriptions in your web hosting account settings, now is the time to just run over there and check it out. Be sure to update your information on a regular bases. As shown by the article, Google’s algorithms are continually changing, so be on top of this one!

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Well, that’s it for today folks. Drop me a comment if you are interested in my proposed Algorithm Circle, or contact me HERE. Hope to hear from you!

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**Jane and Scot Noel are the owners of CME Websites {Code Media Essentials}, a web development company.  Since 1999, CME’s reputation for developing search engine friendly websites has attracted a variety of industrial, consumer, and professional web clients.

Getting Traffic, Growing Your Business – How To Go Viral TODAY!

untitledMaybe I’m the slow kid in class, but the idea of going “viral” just came to me. It was a real light bulb moment, if you will, and I couldn’t NOT post about it. Sadly, there’s sooooo many different things to keep in mind when it comes to marketing and advertising your business and as an entrepreneur it’s hard to keep it all straight.

Not only that, there are umpteen-million different sites and blog posts chronicling each and every possible way to gain traffic and what you need to do to be successful on the internet; how does one wade through it all?imagesLL7D0PIB

To be truthful, I’ve come to this conclusion- through trial and error. Maybe years of trial and error. I know it has been this way for me (and many others). But, it hasn’t been a bad thing because it laid the foundation of where I am NOW. I’m at a place where I have finally constructed a good system that has worked for me. And, I can’t wait to share that with you!

untitled2Throughout the years I have gleaned this, picked out that, plugged this in, rejected that. I’ve learned what works, and what doesn’t. And, that is what the majority of this post is going to be about. It has been on my mind for a very long time (even though I’m just learning about going viral).

The sad thing about technology is that it changes so fast! I can grab a book that looks to be quite new, open up the copyright page, see that it was printed in 2008 (not that long ago, if you think about it), start reading and immediately know (and become disappointed) that the content is outdated.

Another sad thing I notice is all of the swimming a person has to do through all of the SAME information, or nearly duplicate content to find some answers. For example, I can do a Google search on SEO How To’s, and the first page pulls up multiple pages all pretty much saying theimagesPXJSBNCZ same thing. Obviously, the perfect one I’m looking for explains it in the simplest language possible (I’m slow at times, remember?) and sometimes that can take several click-throughs to find what I’m looking for.

…just to let you know, I STILL haven’t found it. But, rest assured when I do, I’ll probably post about it in simple ENGLISH!

untitled3Is it time to come down? Off the soapbox?

All right, if I have to. Must keep chatter at a minimum today…

So, let’s dig in. This post is going to tell you in the straightest way possible what I’ve learned when it comes to having an online business. Most importantly, these are the non-negotiables; the sites that you absolutely cannot get away with not being affiliated with if you want to work online and create an automated income so you can be the globe-trotter you want to be.

Before I being, please note, this post is going to be spotlighting the sites I use. You may not use them, have radical opinions about that, and that is OK. But for me, these sites are what have worked best for me.teacher

Let’s just put it in a bullet-point list, shall we?

Since the old adage can still be seen around the scene: “Content is king.” You need to be publishing it. Content that is. And not only do you need to produce it, it needs to be “share-worthy”. So, in order to do this (which by the way you can either write it yourself or hire someone else to do it for cheap), you have to have the following, or what I call, “the bare bones”:

  • A website

    • In this day and age, you just can’t get away with not having a web site. It’s a no-brainer. I’ve tried many “build your own site” platforms and Wix.com is my favorite. It’s where I keep my clothing store found HERE. And the hiring page I have for clothing models found HERE. There are so many others, time (and my fingers) would fail to list them all, so I’ve just listed what works best for me.
  • Blog

    • I put off having a blog for the longest time. I even toyed with the idea of blogging straight from my clothing web site, but decided against it. So, here I am at WordPress… my second blog with them and I wouldn’t go anywhere else. Maybe I’ll start a third one… ehhhhh, nevermind.
  • Squidoo

    • Reviews are mixed on this one. Some love Squidoo, some don’t. Many question, ‘why write lenses, labor to drive traffic to them when you can just do the same with a blog and keep all profits yourself vs. splitting it with Squidoo’ (and trust me, there ARE perks to writing lenses on Squidoo)). Sure, you can measure up the pros and the cons all day long, but for me, I thought two little words on why I have both- can’t hurt.
    • (Psst… it doesn’t hurt at all, if you catch my meaning)

4000478-515030-decorative-elements-border-and-page-rules

imagesRIQ5MEF7Now unless you run your business in a cave, you have to know that virtually every person on the planet agrees that social media is crucial to business success. So, if you don’t have an account with the following, sign up now:

          • Facebook
          • LinkedIn
          • Twitter
          • Pinterest
            • “Pinning” is the latest and greatest thing that can be a great launching pad for your website, blog posts and Squidoo lenses. Just make sure you use high-quality, eye-grabbing pictures. Many will click through based on the picture alone.

commAs far as social media goes, traffic is a very big part of having an online business. I mean, if no one is seeing you, what good does it do for you? The object of being involved in a social community is just that- community. The good news is a simple Google search has a plethora of articles on how to increase web site and blog traffic so I won’t list them here. Maybe I’ll write my own How To one day!

Even if you don’t use these news sites, sign up for them anyway! I’ll tell you why in a minute:

  • Delicious
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Digg
  • Tumblr
  • Yahoo! Buzz

imagesZ5LDAC28The reason you want to be registered on these sights is to share links to the GREAT content you are producing (whether written by you or someone else you hired). Submitting your content via your bare bones links will get you views to your web site, blog and lenses.

#1 IMPORTANT>>>>>>>>> I don’t know how other blogging sites work, but here at WordPress when you customize the settings for the appearance of your blog, you can pick and choose which “sharing” buttons you want to put at the bottom of your blog posts. As you will see on the bottom of this post, most of what is on the above bulleted list has its own share button.

Why?

#2 IMPORTANT>>>>>>> When I publish my blog post, I then scroll to the bottom of the page and right-mouse click on each share button one at a time and select the option, “Open in New Tab”. Once I’ve shared my post on each site, I don’t close the tab when I’m done sharing. This way I can keep track of which site I’ve shared my blog post on.

images543G31EBWhen all the tabs are up and I’ve seen each and every news site I’ve submitted my blog post to, I then close them all down. If I don’t do that, I get confused and can’t remember what I’ve submitted and what I haven’t!

By going through and sharing my post via one share button at a time, to me, it’s a nice, systematic way to make sure my latest post gets to the most popular news sites.

The buzz on going “viral”:

  • Google WebMaster

    • Utilize the tools here for SEO, XML Site maps, authenticating your site, and more. Although it appears I’m not the brightest bulb in the box when it comes to this, apparently SEO by Yoast is the most popular guru around that you may want to check out. There are many step-by-step articles that can help you.
  • ViralContentBuzz

    • You can do a Google search on “How To Go Viral”. There are plenty of pages that explain how. These two sites here (the one above and below) are supposedly the best when it comes to social media exchange (you share content, others share YOUR content, an exchange, get it?)
  • Outsourcing Promoters

    • You can hire virtual assistants to do all this for cheap so you don’t have to! Have them post and promote your blog and site to various niche forums and message boards, it’s almost too easy…

4000478-515030-decorative-elements-border-and-page-rules

viralSince I’m learning about going viral today, this portion is a work-in-progress sort of. But, I can share with you my favorite top five sites and ‘how to’ pages that I came across:

32 Ways To Make Your Blog Post Go Viral (I got the best information from the comments section, actually)

Make Your Blog Post Go Viral  – In 60 Minutes or Less

How to Make Your Content Go Viral

4000478-515030-decorative-elements-border-and-page-rules

So, there you have it. The literal bare bones of what is needed when it comes to running an online business. As a quick recap, you need a web site, a blog, accounts on all the major social media sites, and accounts on all the major news sites so you can easily submit links to them about your content.

Once you’ve accomplished that, are you done?

Of course not!

You thought you were getting off easy, now didn’t ya?

imagesCGD2GWIRListen- it’s not enough to just establish these things- that is why I called it the “bare bones” of what’s needed. Now you need to give birth to and grow relationships with others in your field. Find your audience, find other experts, join groups, make a group, it goes on and on (maybe I’ll post on these topics too one day).

Don’t get overwhelmed though. It may sound overwhelming, but it’s not… if you can get all these accounts up and running- I’m telling you for real, that’s the most overwhelming part. And, once the bare bones are done, and you can keep track of all the user names, emails and passwords, now you get to go on to the FUN part- growth! Growth that comes from making connections, promoting others then having them promote you back, seeing the traffic, engaging and promoting others, and then…

Maybe going viral?

This is where the excitement is!

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Till next time,

–Joy