Thursday, February 7, 2013

Is Google Page Rank Still Relevant?

It's 2013 and a lot has changed in the world of search engine optimization. After all of these years, is Page Rank still relevant? I remember when Google and Matt Cutts would update everyone with Page Rank updates and news every three months. Now they update it whenever they feel like it. So is it still relevant when it comes to search engine optimization, or relevant at all?

For a while webmasters would track their Page Rank religiously and use it as a factor in selling their websites thinking it gave their websites more value, which until a couple of years ago it did. Google would update Google Page Rank every three months and people would talk about it, create blog posts about it, etc. It was important and you bet it was relevant. But is it still relevant?

As time went on Google Page Rank was less talked about and it holds less importance than it did, say, five years ago or even two years ago. Maybe people finally realized that Page Rank was only one of hundreds of factors that determined your search engine rank.

Some people confuse Google Page Rank as being a metric, but it is actually an algorithm. Page Rank cannot be measures with confidence so it can't serve as a metric. Understanding this and how it works can be useful to webmasters.

Due to the heavy increase in the use of social media, Google had to find a way to factor social media into its algorithm. Although it is not clear how Google factored this in it's clear that they have and social media does influence a website's rank. Whether social media affects a website's Page Rank is still uncertain.

Page Rank helps deliver more relevant results in the search engine. But is Page Rank still relevant? If Page Rank is still relevant then what should webmasters do about that? Will be continue to build and develop our websites around link building to increase our Page Rank? Or will we ignore Page Rank like Google has for the past couple of years?

I personally think that we still need to focus on creating unique content that will entice our visitors to link back to it, therefore creating natural backlinks and increasing our rank in the search engines while increasing our Page Rank. But that may just be the search engine optimizer in me. Page Rank can be manipulated like Alexa can and right now Page Rank holds the same amount of importance as Alexa does (to me).

What do you guys think? Do you think that Google Page Rank is still relevant?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Hurting Your SEO With Social Media

If you're an avid reader of this blog, SEO Blog, you have probably read the article I wrote on how social media can help your search engine optimization efforts. But I'm here to tell you the down side of social media when it comes to search engine optimization as well.

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, MySpace, etc. are all parts of social media. A lot of big(and small) companies(and websites) use social media to keep their visitors up to date on what is going on with their company. Everyone is jumping on the social media bandwagon and attempting to promote their websites on them. What some, if not most or all, of these webmasters do not realize is that their promoting on social media websites may be harming their website's search engine optimization efforts.

Social media can be fun to use but it was not made for the promotion of websites, it was made for keeping in touch with family and friends. Promoting over social media outlets can be difficult due to this. But because of the simplicity of and the easy to use platform of social media it can sometimes appear that everyone with a Facebook or social media profile is a professional marketer.

It becomes a reputation managemenet problem when social media lead to unfavorable search results. A search engine optimization specialist may even need to be called in to save you from the damage negative comments on social media websites have caused your brand and website to receive, especially in the search engine results. These negative comments that are so easy for you to receive if you have a social media profile for your website is one of the main things that hurts your search engine optimization efforts. It makes it difficult for people to see your website and brand as authorative, serious and even clean.

There are plus sides to marketing through social media websites though. Social media may help search engine optimization through citations and link construction. Each reference to your website without a link, in addition to each link, all goes through a search engine's algorithm and computation resulting in a higher position in search results. Although a link will help you more, a simple reference to your website also helps because of the relevancy, trust and authority. Social media backlinks do count toward your website's search engine optimization efforts and helps generate a bigger buzz about your website.

Make sure your social media efforts are targeted and relevant. This is very important to your search engine optimization efforts. Make sure not to "Like" or "Comment" on unrelated pages or topics while using your website page or profile. Being linked to irrelevant things may hurt your search engine optimization efforts.

Just like typical search engine optimization, a plan is necessary when it comes to social media search engine optimization. You must research keywords, competition, etc. Concentrate on relevancy and social media will assist in your search engine optimization efforts. Don't and it will hurt your search engine optimization efforts.

Top AdSense Alternatives

AdSense is an advertising placement service owned and operated by Google that allows you to run ads on your website and earn revenue from your traffic. They are the leading PPC(paid per click) network on the web but they are extremely strict and are quick to ban a website for breaching their terms of service. The slightest thing could get you banned. Luckily, the Google AdSense network is not the only Pay Per Click program in town. That's where the AdSense alternatives come in.

There are many alternatives to Google AdSense and I am going to go over the most popular ones.

AdBrite was a great alternative to AdSense. AdBrite use to be the number one alternative, at least in my eyes, but as of February 1st, 2013, AdBrite shut its doors due to a business deal that fell through. This would have been one of the only ones that I suggested but I guess I'm going to have to be unbiased here and suggest some other companies that will also do the trick.

Another program that I would suggest would be Bidvertiser. Although they are a little smaller and their ads aren't as flexible as AdSense ads, the rates are pretty good. Plus, you can cash out through PayPal! This is a hard thing to find with Pay-Per-Click programs such as AdSense.

Chitika is also a great alternative to AdSense. If a visitor used a search engine to find your website, Chitika will deliver them ads based on the search terms they used. That is a big plus of the network. But there is a downside. This network is more for websites with a lot of traffic. I recommend using them only if you get a lot of traffic and if you sell stuff from your website. It's kind of like being an Amazon affiliate so Chitika is best used with a specific type of audience.

Clicksor would be another way to go. Clicksor has been around for a while. Their ads are pretty nicely displayed and they look a lot like AdSense ads so it's pretty high quality. They offer quick approval of ads and have a great support team behind them if you run into any trouble or have some questions regarding their program. Their rates are also decent.

InfoLinks seems like another great AdSense alternative. Although I haven't tried this program myself, I have ran into a lot of people that have and they all seem to love it.

Now if you have an adult related website then you can try AdultSense. It's an excellent "xxx" Pay Per Click program that is the adult rival of Google AdSense. AdultSense's rates are great and the ads, although all extremely adult oriented, are of high quality.

There are many alternatives to Google AdSense but the above Pay Per Click programs are the best ones in my eyes, and a lot of other webmasters. But if you feel different and would like me to add any other Pay Per Click programs to my little list here, please feel free to use the Contact Page above and email me them.