Tag Archives | SEO

Learning Link-Building for the Success of Your Website

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is optimizing your website to attain higher search engine rank positions within Google or other search engines. In our “SEO: What is the process of Search Engine Optimization?” post we explained that one of the steps in the SEO process is to do offsite optimization through link-building. Link-building is the process of building links (aka backlink) to your website from other websites.

Learning link-building mistakes from others is a good way to learn what to do and what not to do when working on optimizing your website for better search engine results.  Recently, I participated in a webinar discussing JCPenney’s link-building nightmare.

JCPenney’s Link-Building Nightmare

JCPenney hired an agency to help them build back links for its website. In an effort to improve SEO results for JCPenney, the agency bought paid links from unknown and irrelevant. Irrelevant sources included links from websites such as car dealers, which have nothing to do with JCPenney’s product offering. The excessive amount of back links to JCPenney’s website raised a red flag in front of the eyes Google. As a result, the Google Spam Team did further research and ended up penalizing JCPenney for their bad link-building efforts.

Value of Link-Building

The webinar explained that links and offsite optimization make up 50% of the SEO equation. Therefore, for your website to get higher rankings in the search engine results and build credibility, one must make sure that other websites are referencing your website.

JCPenney Link-Building Problems

Problem:  JCPenney drastically increased link building.

  • Solution: No more than 50 links coming to your website per month is recommended.

Problem: Link-building from unrelated websites.

  • Solution: Backlinks should come from relevant sites. Relevant sites can be websites within the same industry as your business or an article talking about your services or offerings.

Problem: JCPenney did not optimize their website.

  • Solution: Websites content, page titles and meta tags should be optimized for better search engine rankings.

Link-Building Success

  • Time: Link-building is a process that takes times because no more than 50 links per month should be directed back to your website.
  • Types of Links: Links can come from online directories, paid listings, press releases, blogs, or forums.
  •  Building Links: Remember to use relevant keywords as your anchor text. In addition, remember to have those same keywords in the description of the page description.
  • Article & Press Releases: Always write articles and press releases with 250-500 keywords. Also, have keywords that are hyperlinked to relevant pages throughout your website, not just the home page.

Just like any project, strategizing the best way to get the most value of your investment can be very cumbersome. For help with link-building and preventing the same problem JCPenney had, contact Softway Solutions or call us direct at 281.914.4381.


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SEM or SEO: Which Method is Right for You?

In earlier posts, I have talked much about Search Engine Optimization (SEO); but what about Search Engine Marketing? Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a paid form of online marketing and complementary to SEO. SEM incorporates paid placement, contextual advertising, and paid inclusion. This is all done through the use of Pay Per Click and Pay Per Call Ads. SEM ads appear under the Sponsored Ads section in search engines or as Banner Ads across the web.

So, what is the difference between SEO and SEM?

Listed below are the categories that differentiate SEO from SEM.

Time Consumption: SEO is very time consuming in the sense of manual labor which includes extensive research, onsite optimization, offsite optimization, and monitoring results. In addition, SEO requires a person to continuously work on optimizing his/her website. In comparison, SEM requires less time. Once some research has been made to find good keywords and the ad is in place, minimal amount is required for monitoring results.

Cost: If SEO is done in house by an employee, the cost is minimal. However, if SEO is outsourced, then the cost between good SEO and effective SEM campaigns are more comparable.

Visualization: The end result of SEO is a site’s visibility in organic search or in other content around the web. The end result of SEM is a site has visibility online only though sponsored or banner ads.

Result time: SEO takes times, so the results can take two to three months to appear. SEM provides faster results, once one sets up an ad it can be seen in a matter of minutes.

Longevity of Results: Although the effects of SEO on a site take longer to notice, once SEO is in high gear, even if a person stops optimizing his/her site the results can last for awhile. In contrast, however, once a person stops SEM, the ads, and thus the site’s visibility, disappear.

Sometimes it is hard to identify which method , SEO or SEM, is best for your business. So, go ahead, contact Softway Solutions for a FREE consultation to discover what will work for your business.

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Internet Marketing Strategy: SEO, PPC, Blogging, Social Media

Now that you have read our previous post about strategizing your Search Engine Optimization (SEO), SEO Tools, and Keyword Optimization, is there anything else? YES, a good Internet Marketing Strategy will also help your website’s rankings. Listed below are a few common online strategies that any business should be utilizing.

Internet Marketing Strategy #1: Search Engine Marketing

  • Per Wikipedia that Search engine marketing, (SEM) is a form of Internet marketing that seeks to promote websites by increasing their visibility in search engine result pages (SERPs) through the use of paid placement, contextual advertising, and paid inclusion. This is done through the use of Pay Per Click, Pay Per Call and banner advertisements. These paid advertisements, also known as Sponsored Ads, are usually found as text ads on the top and right sides of the search engine results page (SERP) or appear as banner ads in numerous shapes and sizes across the internet.

Internet Marketing Strategy #2: Content Management

  • One of Content Management’s platforms is a blog. Blogs are rich with content, precise, and relevant keyword information that allows a website to be easily found by prospective customers. In addition, blogs allow for the distribution of business services, news outlet, social media updates, social responsibility and case study information.

Internet Marketing Strategy #3: Social Media

  • Social Media is a good online marketing strategy for brand awareness and customer engagement. Social Media includes the use of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and other social networks. Utilizing these mediums provides a venue for readers to link back to your website.

These strategies, SEM, Blogging and Social Media, are all good sources to help increase traffic into your website. This means, more traffic you have coming to your website the more credible your site will appear to the search engines. In turn the search engines will provide your site’s pages with higher positions in the search rankings results pages (SERPs). Contact Softway Solutions for more information on how we can help you find the right online tools for your business.


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Search Engine Optimization Tools

For the “do it yourself SEOers”, Softway Solutions has compiled a list of tools that can be beneficial for improving your website’s SEO. Some are free, some are of charge.

One of the main things to first understand is that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) requires a lot of research initially. The more you know about your website, competitors, and offsite optimization, the more you will know on what needs improvement or not. So let’s start with researching tools that will help your onsite and offsite optimization.

Website Analysis Tools

  • Websitegrader allows you to enter your websites URL and a report of your blog, website, and promotional tools is provided. In addition, you can compare your website with other websites.
  • Woorank allow you to enter your website’s URL and a grade report of your website is provided, along with all the information your website is missing.  Also, Woorank provides a report with On-Site and Off-Site Optimization about your website.

Researching Popular Keywords Tool

  • Google Adwords allows you to research popular keywords for SEO purposes.
  • UberSuggest gives you great keyword ideas – powered by Google’s Suggest.

Onsite Keyword Optimization Tools

  • SEO Bookmarklet allows you to get a report of all your website’s meta data and tags.
  • SEOQuake is real good tool in providing information about your website’s keyword density.

Local Search Optimization Tool

  • Yext provides the advantage of entering your company’s basic information and see where and how your business is listed under free online listings.

Measuring Your Work Tools

  • Google Analytics is a very popular tool to measure your website’s performance. Google Analytics provides information such as how many impressions and visits your website gets, referral sources or direct clicks, geographical information and more.
  • Omniture provides a platform of web analytics and online business optimization for your website.

Sometimes managing all this tools can become confusing. Contact Softway Solutions to help you take care of and maximize all available SEO tools.

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Which Tail Is Right For You, Short or Long Tail Keyword Optimization?

In light of the addition of a new member to the Softway Solutions team, a large focus this month has been Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Danny Gavin is the new internet expert on all things related to SEO, social media and Web marketing and has explained the differences between Short Tail and Long Tail Keyword Optimization.

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is a great way for companies and businesses to get noticed on the Web. Have you ever wondered why certain companies pop up first on the results list of Google? You can attribute that to search engine optimization and the layout of the search engine through the use of short tail or long tail keywords.

Let’s take Google as our prime example. Google has a very complicated algorithm that it uses so that certain websites come up in a calculated order. SEO is a complex skill that determines the algorithm in order to maneuver the Google searches. Without proper marketing, your website could get lost in the overwhelming abyss of the World Wide Web.

What are Short Tail and Long Tail Keywords?

Search engine optimization can be achieved through several different strategies. When choosing keywords to target there are two paths to consider: focusing on short tail keywords and/or long tail keywords.. Let’s say you have just developed a website for a company that sells homemade barbeque out of a food truck in Houston, Texas. Here, an example of a short tail keyword optimization would be for “Houston barbeque”. This would be much more time-consuming and costly to optimize your website to appear on the first page of results for this search. There are many businesses competing for the same key phrase. An example of a long tail keyword optimization would be “Houston homemade barbeque food trucks”.

Which “Tail” is Better: Short Tail or Long Tail?

There are benefits and drawbacks for both the short tail and the long tail. Through successful short tail keyword optimization, the company will get high traffic. However, optimizing your site around these keywords is expensive because of the competition surrounding these terms. Finally, since these keyword are very general – you won’t necessarily be getting “targeted traffic” so the conversion rate of visits to leads from these terms will naturally be low.

For long term keyword optimization, the benefits are that it is easier to rank (less competition), there is a higher conversion rate (the traffic you do get is looking for your product/service), and the traffic is much more targeted. However challenges do exist because there is a lower amount of traffic for each individual keyword and this method involves more work because you need pages to carry long key phrases.

Conclusion: Keyword Optimization

With the above in mind, companies should feel better knowing that there are strategies for optimizing your site on the Internet. Also, it is apparent that there are pros and cons, like anything, to short tail and long tail keyword optimization. It is important to make sure your company has analyzed what it wants to get out of search engine optimization before starting a project.

SEO is becoming very strategic and that’s why you need a company like Softway Solutions that can provide the best recommendations to help your business get more traffic to your website and thus generate more income. Feel free to contact Softway Solutions for additional information on how we can help your business gow.

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SEO: What is the process of Search Engine Optimization?

Many people today are still confused about Search Engine Optimization (SEO). So what exactly is SEO? Search Engine Optimization is optimizing your website to attain higher search engine rank positions within Google or other search engines. So what does optimization mean? Optimization is the process of ensuring that Google has a clear understanding of what each page in your site is about and what keywords you want those pages to rank for in Google. So, what is the process of SEO?

1. Pick a strategy utilizing short or long tails keywords.

  • Short Tail Keywords include broad one to two keyword phrases.
  • Long Tail Keywords include specific three or more keyword phrases.

2. Research popular keywords in

  • Top competitors website
  • Industry Associations or Organizations
  • Your website analysis for comparison

3. Do onsite optimization

  • Inserting popular keywords throughout your website, both in coding tags and visible text.

4. Do offsite optimization

  • Through a link building strategy. Link Building can be done through back linking. Back linking is the practice of getting links over to your website from other websites.
  • Some methods of how one can build back links include article distribution, press release distribution, directory submissions, social bookmarks, comment box linking, or guest blog posts

5. Measure your work

  • There are many website analytic packages out there, we recommend Google Analytics, Omniture, or Webtrends. Only through looking at the analytics can one measure what is and what is not working in his SEO campaign and discover where the ROI is coming from.

6. Work on SEO on a continuous, preferably monthly, basis by doing the following

  • On Page SEO by constantly tweaking or moving around relevant keywords to optimize your keywords
  • External SEO  by back link building from other websites
  • Upload new content to your website
  • Measure your work through the use of analytics
SEO can be very time consuming and results will start showing in about three months if an individual is continuously working on SEO for their website. At Softway Solutions, we have a team of Houston Internet Marketing Specialists that provide first-rate SEO services and the research necessary to help your website see positive results. Please contact Softway Solutions to learn more on how we can help you increase your website’s visibility and ROI.
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