Better Return of Investment: Pay Per Click or SEO?

For people new to blogging, you should know that in the world of online marketing, there’s always been an on-going war: SEO versus PPC. Which do you think gives the better return on investment or ROI between the two?

Your site’s success is dependent on its visitors, readers, and loyal subscribers. If you’re selling a product or service, or if you’re aiming for personal popularity or fame—ranking on the top 10 sites of search engines (Google, Bing, or Yahoo) will definitely put you on the map.

The question is, which is the best way to get your brand out there? How will make your website number one?

Pulpit rock

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Is Guest Blogging Dead in 2014?

Is Guest Blogging Dead

Have you been guest blogging all the time to build links back to your site and rank high in Google?

Well the chances are that you did make your guest articles a good and regular source of traffic for your blog or website. My perception for guest blogging was just the same as yours(most of you) till yesterday, until I came through this just today. Let’s take a look on what Matt Cutts from Google’s Webspam Team has to say about Guest Blogging in a quote on 20th January, 2014 :

Okay, I’m calling it: if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop. Why? Because over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.

Then to end the long awaited speculation, he added :

So stick a fork in it: guest blogging is done; it’s just gotten too spammy. In general I wouldn’t recommend accepting a guest blog post unless you are willing to vouch for someone personally or know them well. Likewise, I wouldn’t recommend relying on guest posting, guest blogging sites, or guest blogging SEO as a linkbuilding strategy.

What Guest Blogging Has Been to Me?

I will be fair in saying that I never ran much after guest blogging. I won’t say I didn’t want to. Somehow I couldn’t do it. I have been writing one guest post every month on different blogs. I managed to get a lot of traffic to my own blog through those articles. I also managed to interact and network with some awesome bloggers and writers as well as readers.

So to conclude my experience of guest blogging, it has been swift, easy, beneficial and awesome.

Why Google Might Hate Guest Posting From Now On?

There is a trend on the internet that a white hat SEO technique today tends to get spammy as more and more people start to follow it just to gain high rankings and SERPs. There is no doubt that guest posting is being used just as a medium to build backlinks. With quality of content getting lost somewhere in the race of building backlinks, I would judge the move by Google as pretty much correct and necessary.

Is There Any Hidden Motive of Google Behind This Action?

With guest blogging also being seen as a spam link building technique, what else remains on the cards for bloggers and webmasters? Article marketing faded long before. Isn’t that a sign that now Google wants us to take a slight look on the Adwords as the next source of marketing? Well it could be just me thinking too much, but what remains as a genuine source for marketing and promoting a blog  is what Google runs on.

Do We Stop Guest Blogging Completely?

No would be my answer for this. At least I have planned two to three guest posts in this month only.

A solution to escape from Google’s penalty would be to nofollow the links back to your own site from your guest articles. This way, you can still manage to write for a wider audience. You will still be getting traffic to your site from those articles but without the wrath of Google.

How do you intend to promote your blog now with Guest Blogging soon going out? I would like to have your opinions and suggestions on this.

3 Excellent Ways to Manage 404 Pages For SEO

Page.not.found.

404 is an HTTP Status Code returned by a server for any particular page.

HTTP Status Codes?

Let’s take a look at what are these status codes and what are they meant and used for.

HTTP Status Codes are generally three digit codes or numbers which are returned by a browser for a particular page or an element when it is accessed by a visitor.

Generally, there are five types of status codes returned by any browser :-

  1. 200 OK/Success
  2. 301 Permanent
  3. 302 Temporary
  4. 404 Not Found
  5. 500 Server Error

What we are most concerned with in this blogging tip are the “404 – Page Not Found” status codes. Though we might discuss rest of the codes someday later.

404s are returned when the server is unable to find anything matching for the requested URL. In that case, your server or CMS will display a 404 – URL Not Found Page.

Even if you check your blog’s or website’s Google Webmaster Account, you will certainly find some 404 pages returned by your server.

Though 404 pages are not something to be worried for. In fact, they are not supposed to harm your site directly in terms of SEO. Though, by managing them wisely, you can use them for greater benefits. Let’s see how.

3 Ways to Manage 404 Errors on Your Website

  1. Do Not Redirect Every 404 Page :- There is absolutely no reason to fear 404 pages. No one has ever given proof that major search engine like Google will ever penalize your site for 404 pages directly. Hence, you must not panic to redirect every 404 page to your homepage or any category. The best way to sort out this is to conduct an audit of your 404 pages. Those 404 pages which have high number of quality backlinks pointing to it or have a decent traffic to them from Google for certain keywords should be redirected to homepage or any other page of equivalent relevance and importance. This will help you save link juice to your website and will even conserve traffic from search engines and natural links. The rest of the 404 pages which you think are not of that importance and bring nothing to your website should be left as they are.
  2. Keep a Count on the Number :- Another result of a large  number of 404 pages on your website can be that your webpages are either not accessible or do not exist. If this number of total 404 pages on your website grows beyond a certain limit, for example, 500 pages out of a total of 1,000 pages on your website are 404s, then there is something to worry about and you need to to take a deep look on your site’s structure and server’s configuration.
  3. Design and Customize Your 404 Page :- This useful technique is used by many expert bloggers and webmasters (not me of course) to gain more subscribers and visitors. All they do is that they design and customize their 404 pages beautifully to redirect their visitors to homepage, sales page or any subscription form. This will help your website to grow from pages which do not even exist on your website. 

404 pages can be extremely useful and handy if used with caution and great mind. How do you manage the 404 pages on your website? Where do you redirect the traffic from 404 pages? Please feel free to leave any suggestion below in the comments.

Key Elements For Search Engine Optimization

You will need a method to promote your website to the search engines as well as to visitors. You will need a course of action according to a few key elements, which should be considered wisely prior to taking any additional steps.

The Website’s Goals

What exactly are your objectives for the web-site? These objectives will generally detail the website’s goals. When it comes to commercial websites, the diverse objective is direct – to market plenty of goods and/or solutions in order to become profitable.

Nevertheless, you may also wish to inform, inspire, convince and notify along with, or in place of, attempting to sell. An evaluation of your website’s desired goals is the perfect place to begin the creation of your plan of action. When you have decided the website’s targets, make sure you keep them at the forefront throughout the whole growth of your search engine promotion strategy.

Market Statistics

Who will be your target – your sales market? What are the needs of the demographic market you are promoting to? How are they purchasing decisions made? Will they be computer wise? It is vital to the concept and execution of a search engine promotion technique to recognize your market.

The most ideal starting point to learn starts with your competition. Search Google for the competition to determine the accomplishments of your competitors. Wonderfully honest and a considerable, genuine self-help guide to learn exactly what succeeds and what does not.

However you cannot stop at that point. Market analytics are usually an integral part of an excellent promotion approach. The creation of multi-faceted metrics will be helpful in practically each step of the concept, improvement and search engine optimization stages. There are many performance metrics applications on the market. A Few are even totally free.

Advertising and Optimization

Nowadays, website achievements will depend on marketing and search-engine promotion. You may advertise on a shoe string budget or you could certainly establish an all inclusive strategy with advertising ads, Google Adwords, link generation and opt-in socialization. Considering you aren’t skilled with SEO, you will be better served by experts who are able to monitor activity, create practical metrics and develop and apply an approach for enhanced website performance.

Then there is conversion search engine optimization – converting site visitors into buyers. Much of this occurs at the introduction level. Will the website satisfy or surpass the visitor’s objectives? You’ve got 6.4 mere seconds to persuade a site visitor to examine your website. That is the length of time internet users dedicate to website evaluation.

Do It Yourself or Opt For The Pros?

Ninety-four percent of all e-commerce projects fail. A lot of of these downfalls are derived from bad business brands, but merely as much are caused by low-quality website design, lack of search engine recognition.

If you are knowledgeable with e-commerce, build a strategy that involves some of these critical aspects. If you do not understand how e-commerce works, retain the services of a professional to get it done.

Author Bio: Joana Hall is an avid writer who likes to write blogs on SEO. She has written many articles on search engine promotion optimization. In this article she is providing the readers some valuable information on Key Elements For Search Engine Optimization.

5 Ways to Use Google Webmaster Tools to Improve Your SEO

Google Webmaster Tools

You must have been using Google Webmaster Tools if you are a blogger or a webmaster. Or at least you must have heard about it or read about it on the internet as a blogger’s best friend when it comes to performing on Google.

What do you use Google Webmaster Tools for? Some use it to keep a watch on the backlinks to their site indexed by Google. Some bloggers use GWT to check which queries are making their website appear in the search results and where.

The truth is that Google Webmaster Tools is a platform which is extremely capable of reforming your website’s SEO. There is no doubt that Google is the biggest organic traffic provider and organic traffic converts the best. So, it’s important that you remain at the top in Google’s eyes.

Let’s take a look at how we can use GWT to extract maximum benefits out of it.

5 Must Use Features of Google Webmaster Tools

  1. Crawl Errors :- You will fine “Crawl Errors” under the section “Crawl” for your website. Crawl Errors are basically the URLs belonging to your site which could not be crawled by the Google bots but were submitted in your sitemap. This may result in some highly important pages not being crawled and not indexed by Google resulting in loss of quality and ultimately traffic to your blog. Hence you must always be keeping an eye on this section.
  2. Link to Your Site :- You will find “Links to Your Site” under the section “Search Traffic” for your website. You can find each and every page which is linking to your site or any of its pages on the internet here. As you know, Google has warned bloggers and webmasters to be extremely cautious with the quality of links they build for their websites. Hence, through this section, you can find which websites are linking to which pages of your blog or website. You should try to eliminate low quality or spam links, if any, to your site and focus more on building backlinks on high quality websites.
  3. Content Keywords :- Google is all about fair and optimized usage of keywords. In this section which is found under the “Google Index” menu for your site, you can find out for which keywords your blog or website is ranking and where you have to improve your keyword analysis. You can use this section along with Google Analytics to build a powerful keyword strategy for your blog.
  4. HTML Improvements :- “HTML Improvements” is found under “Search Appearance” menu. You can find out any duplicate meta descriptions or duplicate tags for pages of your website. Duplicate content in any form is punished by Google and therefore you must resolve the duplicate descriptions or tags issues if there are any on your blog.
  5. Sitemaps :- You can submit sitemaps of your blog in .xml format to Google under the “Sitemaps” in “Crawl” menu of your site. This will help Google understand your site better and index your links quickly. You can even submit a sitemap for images and videos on your site. I suggest submitting your sitemap each time any page or link is added to your blog.

Last but not the least, you can use “Instant Previews” to see how your website appears in the search results. You can make use of “Remove URLs” if you want Google to demote any links of your site from its index.

How do you intend to use Google Webmaster Tools for SEO and other purposes? Please say your heart out in the comments below.