Browsing articles by " Gerald Weber"

Searching the Real Time Web with Sency

Dec 2, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  4 Comments

sency

The real time web is one of the hottest areas of the web right now. The reason why is that internet users want to know what is happening right now. With the advent of user generated content, there is real time data out there and real time search engines can show you what is happening right now.

Below is a review of Sency – one of the up and coming real time search engines.

Sency allows internet users to navigate the real time web from two angles. First users can search for what is being said about a specific term. So, if users want to see what people are saying about an athlete, celebrity, or other news event, they can get that information in real time. Sency also shows users today’s most popular link for a specific keyword. So, users can search to see which links are the hottest right now.

In addition to a search engine for users, Sency also offers two widgets for publishers. The first widget gives websites and blogs access to real time content. The second widget gives publishers access to today’s most popular links for a given keyword. Each widget is easy to customize, and free to use. Also, there is no Sency branding above or below either widget.

Many startups, such as Sency, have begun to navigate the real time web. It will be interesting to see which ones emerge and also, it will be interesting to see the new tools that these real time web companies create.

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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When SEO Advice Goes Wrong

Sep 11, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  82 Comments

FAIL

Before I start this post, I want to make it clear that I like the SEO Hosting Blog. In addition to being a regular reader and commenter, I also have a professional relationship with two of the SEO Hosting writers. However, with that being said, I have to admit that I was quite disappointed with a post that I came across on Wednesday.

The post that caught my attention was titled “Why Does a Blog Help SEO?,” and was written by Garry Conn. Since I am a blogger and own an SEO company, I thought this post was going to be right up my alley. However, my opinion of this post changed once I reached the second half of it. In the spirit of fairness, I’m going to quote the entire section of the post that I have an issue with:

Last item is gaining inbound links to your site. Now, this part is something that not many people do very often. If you have a website and you’re trying to get it to rank for top rated keywords, the blog itself is what can thrust your website into top rankings. The key to doing this is to make sure that you’re blog is completely separate from your website. Meaning, if your website is YOURBUSINESS.COM, don’t make your blog YOURBUSINESS.COM/BLOG or BLOG.YOURBUSINESS.COM.

Instead, make your blog something like YOURBUSINESSBLOG.com. Additionally, your blog and website should be different IP addresses, in fact, maybe hosted by different companies. The purpose of doing this is to have the ability to point links back to your website and have search engines credit these links as true external inbound links.

This part handles a portion of inbound links to your website, which there should also be other link campaigns going on as well. Perhaps a second or third blog as well.”

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Who Are You Gonna Call When You Need A Guru?

Jun 25, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  20 Comments

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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The Lowdown on Sub Digger Plus

Jun 23, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog, Social Media  //  18 Comments

subdiggerplus

Chances are you’re familiar with both StumbleUpon and Digg. Have you ever wished it would be as easy to Digg posts as it was to Stumble from site to site? Well, now it can be. Sub Digger Plus wasn’t created by Digg (so it’s uncertain if using it will get your Digg account in trouble), but it’s a great way to make keeping up with your friends’ Digg submissions. Not only is this tool helpful, it’s not difficult to use. In fact, if you know your Digg username, that’s all you need to enter to start using the tool (which works on Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome browsers.)

With no plugins to download or software to install, Sub Digger Plus makes it simple to easily check out Digg submissions from your friends. After entering your Digg username, you’ll go to a screen with a toolbar on the bottom. Your friends’ submissions will load in the top of the screen. All you have to do is click one button to see the next submission. There’s also a handy list view that’s sortable. Depending on your personal preferences, you can choose to sort the list by Date, Diggs, Title, Submitter, Topic or Read (and any of these options can be sorted in ascending or descending order). This makes it super easy to see what your friends are doing at Digg, and provides you with the opportunity to create a really personalized Digg experience.

subdiggernext
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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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How to Make WordPress More Secure from Hackers & Robots

Jun 8, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  57 Comments

Bad Robot

WordPress is one of the most popular open source blogging platforms. Unfortunately, this also seems to make it a popular target for hackers. While keeping your WordPress installation up to date can prevent a lot of potential security breaches, that’s not a guaranteed way to stay safe. Today, I’m going to cover a few steps you can take to give yourself extra layers of protection against hackers and evil robots.

Although these first steps may seem extremely basic, it’s always good to be reminded of the fundamentals. A great example of this was the Twitter happiness fiasco that occurred a couple of months ago. While it did have some entertainment value, it also served as a reminder that even the most basic security measures can be overlooked if you aren’t proactively taking steps to be more secure. Here are a few lessons that can be learned from that fiasco:

Don’t use words from the dictionary for your password

For example, passwords like password or happiness.

Most brute force attacks attempt to gain access by trying a prearranged list of dictionary words. If you choose a password that is not a word from the dictionary, you won’t leave yourself open to this type of attack.

Don’t use passwords that aren’t strong

For example, all lowers case with no numbers or other characters.

What exactly makes a password strong? Strong passwords have the following characteristics:

  • Lengthy: Each time you add a character, your password becomes exponentially more difficult to guess.
  • A combination of letters numbers and symbols: The more characters the better
  • Uses both upper case and lower case letters
  • Use a password that is easy for you to remember but difficult for others to guess

Microsoft has some more detailed tips on how to create strong passwords that are easy to remember but difficult for others to guess.

Whatever you do, don’t allow UNLIMITED login attempts!

In the case of the Twitter fiasco, the hacker actually launched an automated brute force attack which ran overnight while he was sleeping. The WordPress Limit Login Attempts Plugin is an ideal way for WordPress users to protect themselves from such brute force attacks. It works using both IP addresses and cookies. It can be set to notify you via email when someone has been locked out due to four failed login attempts. The first time four failed attempts occur the user or potential hacker is locked out for twenty minutes. After the next four failed attempts, the lockout last for twenty-four hours. These are the default settings, but they are fully customizable.

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Digg Says Goodbye to Shouts, Hello to Facebook and Twitter

May 28, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog, Social Media  //  22 Comments

Last Tuesday (May 19th), Digg held their latest Townhall. After talking about upcoming Digg events, they began answering questions from users, and a screenshot of the first question they answered is below:

Digg Townhall Question

When presented with this question, Jay Adelson and Kevin Rose stated that they were planning on shutting down this feature in a few days. They said that while they realized this was a controversial decision, they had decided to replace it with new sharing options. The two sharing options they mentioned were Facebook and Twitter, and they said that these changes would make the sharing process simpler and more streamlined.

Digg stuck to this promise, and on Tuesday of this week (May 26th), they made the official announcement on their blog that they were removing the shout feature. In addition to discussing the ability to quickly share via Facebook or Twitter, the Digg post also stated that while they have removed the “Blog This” feature, they still have a shortcut for sharing via email (as you can see from the screenshot below):

Digg Sharing Options

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Revisiting SheerSEO One Year Later

May 11, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  32 Comments

Last week, I was browsing through some Search Engine Journal posts from last year when I came across the following post by Ann Smarty – SheerSEO : Another Way To Track Your Google Rankings. After reading her post and noticing that the tool had some very interesting features, I decided that I wanted to try it out for myself. Although Ann wrote a great post, it was written nearly a year ago, so I thought it would be useful to share my more recent experience with
SheerSEO Historical Positions

If you want to use this tool to provide information to your clients, you can also take advantage of their white label feature, which allows you customize and brand the information that you show to your clients:

SheerSEO White Label

In Ann’s original review, she noted several shortcomings of SheerSEO. However, it looks like they have responded to her constructive criticism. Below are the shortcomings that Ann noted in her original post, along with information about any responseSheerSEO has made to them:

-direct links to the aggregated data: There are now links to these pages in the Position? column

-more backlink data: Although their Backlinks Watchdog feature could come in handy, I agree that this is one area where the tool could still be improved

-more sorting and filtering options: Currently, you can now select the Date Range, Search Engine and Search Term on the Historical Positions page

-the ability to track multiple projects: It looks like SheerSEO solved this issue by introducing a Master Account feature

One other main difference between when Ann reviewed SheerSEO and now is that while it was completely free to use when Ann reviewed it, a new pricing structure has been introduced for the tool. However, not only can you use the tool without paying for a full three months, but their paid options after the trial period are quite reasonable, as you can see from the table below:

SheerSEO Pricing

After my experience with this SEO tool, I feel comfortable recommending that all of our readers sign up for a trial account. Given the fact that you can useSheerSEO for a full three months before paying a single cent, you should have no problem deciding if this tool fits your needs during that period of time.

When you try out SheerSEO for yourself (or if you have done so already), be sure to leave a comment with your experience for us all to read!

Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Is the New DiggBar Pure Evil?

Apr 23, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog, Social Media  //  20 Comments

On April 2nd, Digg launched the DiggBar. In Digg’s words, the DiggBar allows you to “Digg directly on the destination site, easily share stories, access, view comments while on the story page, discover related stories, see more stories from the same source and discover random stories.” In reality, as TechCrunch noted on the day that this new feature from Digg was launched, the DiggBar is a way to keep “you on Digg and shows the site being pointed to in an iframe wrapper.” This means that while Digg used to send large amounts of traffic in exchange for being able to feature great pieces of content on their web site, they are now trying to have the best of both worlds by not only using content from other publishers but by also benefiting from the traffic that content generates.

Not surprisingly, this new feature has generated a lot of controversy throughout the Internet community. While there has been a lot of scattered discussion about why many people feel the new DiggBar is pure evil, here is a centralized look at the three main reasons people are getting upset:

Steals Traffic and Links: As some people have stated, “Digg is just a glorified scraper site now.” The reason that this statement has some validity to it is because not only is Digg stealing traffic by framing in content from other publishers, but because the DiggBar includes a URL shortening feature, people will be linking to the “Digg URL” instead of the actual URL of the content. Regardless of how you feel about SEO, social media optimization, linkbait or any other related topics, I think we can all agree that when a publisher takes time to create a piece of content that people enjoy, they should be the one to receive the links and traffic generated from that piece of content, and not a third-party service. Just imagine if Google started framing all of their search results and creating their own URLs instead of linking to the original URL of the content!

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Automatically Perfect Your Blog’s SEO

Apr 4, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   SEO Blog  //  33 Comments

On the last day of March Marko from HowToMakeMyBlog.com wrote a post, Do not worry about SEO, just concentrate on your blog readers encouraging bloggers to worry more about interacting with their readers and creating great content instead of SEO. As someone who is active in the blogging and social media world, I agree that this is solid advice for bloggers. However, as someone who also works in the SEO world, I do know from experience that a well-optimized blog can increase the amount of traffic that you receive from search engines. So, while Marko provided several good tips for your initial blog SEO in his post, I wanted to write today about how you can automatically do SEO for your blog.

SEO Books
Balancing blogging, social media and SEO; photo from Marcio Okabe

As long as you are using WordPress, you can perfect your blog’s SEO with the Platinum SEO plugin. Now, before I discuss this plugin, I want to address one issue. I am sure that many of you have heard of the All in One SEO Pack (and some of you may actually use this plugin). While it is a very good plugin, the reason that I prefer the Platinum SEO plugin is because it has all the features of the All in SEO Pack, along with some additional ones.

Now that you know why I recommend the Platinum SEO plugin, let’s dive into it’s features:

-This plugin will automatically optimize your post and page titles for search engines. This means that you can focus on writing great titles that will attract human readers, and the plugin will make sure that the titles are optimized for the search engine crawlers.

-The Platinum SEO plugin will generate all of your meta tags automatically (however, if there is a specific change you want to make to a meta tag, you can easily do so). So, instead of spending five minutes creating meta tags for your post, you can use those five minutes to embed a great picture into your post from Flickr that will grab the attention of your visitors.

-Although WordPress is a great platform, one of its biggest problems in terms of SEO is that it creates a lot of duplicate content issues (which can negatively impact your search engine rankings). Fortunately, this plugin has features built into it which will take care of those duplicate content problems.

-While Marko mentioned that you should change your blog’s default permalink structure to a “prettier one”, if you already have a blog, you may be worried that changing your permalink structure will create a lot of broken links. However, with this plugin, you can change your permalinks in the WP Dashboard and the plugin will automatically take care of any broken links by creating a search engine friendly 301 redirect.

-Since there are certain pages of your blog that you may want readers to have access to but not search engines, the plugin makes it easy to add the following tags to any post or page that you choose (all of which are designed to block search engines from indexing that specific post or page):noindex, fnofollow, noarchive, nosnippet, noodp or noydir.

By using this plugin, you will be able to get the best of both worlds: not only will you be able to enjoy more search engine traffic, but you will still be able to keep your focus on interacting with your readers and writing top notch content that keeps them engaged!

Do you have any , questions, opinions or insights? Please let us know in the comments below.

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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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Social Voting Madness! (Reader Poll Included)

Apr 1, 2009   //   by Gerald Weber   //   Copywriting, SEO Blog  //  66 Comments

Arguably, the most popular type of social media web sites are social voting sites. The reason that social voting sites can be more addictive than crack and more alluring than the song of a siren is because they can send a huge surge in traffic if a piece of your content gets popular.

As many of our regular readers know, I have taken time to explore most of the major social voting sites. While they are all alluring, I have discovered that they have their distinct advantages and disadvantages, as well as their own unique social culture. So, without further ado, let’s review six of the most popular social voting sites:

Digg.com: Digg seems to be one the most popular and well-known of the social voting sites. My personal views of Digg are that they can be excessively picky about the source of the content, and it definitely takes a significant investment of time and commitment to succeed on this platform. However, I still think Digg is a lot of fun, as well as a great platform for networking. I know that I have personally made many great friends from Digg!

digg pride! - mobile advertising
photo credit: NightRPStar
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Gerald Weber

I founded Search Engine Marketing Group in December 2005. More recently I co-founded viralcontentbuzz.com. which is the free platform that helps bloggers generate REAL "social buzz" on their best content. Feel free to follow me on Google+

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