7 Do’s & Don’ts For Working With A Technical SEO During A Redesign

In the past few months, I’ve been the technical SEO consultant to 6 companies who have been in the process of redesigning their websites. The companies range in size from a one-person show to a world-reknowned Boston hospital, and everything in between. All of the companies were smart enough to know they needed expert SEO […]


Cheers to SEO: How It Pays To Be Optimized

The Free Dictionary definition for optimize: op·ti·mize:  To make as perfect or effective as possible. My long-standing definition of Search Engine Optimization (SEO): “Making your site the best it can be for users and search engines.” SEO is both as simple and as difficult that Making something optimal by its very nature is going to […]

Link building

Is Choosing Search Engines Over Users A Fatal Flaw In SEO?

I recently read an article by Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz, entitled “Terrible SEO Advice: Focus on Users, Not Engines” that could potentially set SEO back at least at decade, in my opinion. In the article, he apologized to his audience of budding SEOs for having ever told them to do what’s right for their users. […]


Organic SEO As Another Marketing Channel

SEO is confusing to many. It’s shrouded in mystery, often has a bad reputation and is not generally understood by traditional marketers. Heck, it’s not even understood by website developers nor some who sell SEO as a service. Yet SEO is nothing more or less than an additional marketing channel for your business. Let me […]


3 Things I Learned About Business On My Summer Vacation

…and how it relates to your business and your SEO. As I write this, I’m on vacation in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, CA.  While this won’t be 100% organic SEO as is usually the topic, I’ll try my best to tie some of my vacation experiences to the SEO world, and to […]


Is Most Of SEO Just A Boondoggle?

The SEO industry is beset with people who are making unnecessary changes to client websites based on unfounded theories that at best produce the teeniest boost to the site, and at worst "fix" problems that never existed in the first place. Jill Whalen explains why most of SEO is just a boondoggle.

Analytics & conversion

Using Analytics To Measure SEO Success

I’ve previously discussed why rankings are a poor measure of success, but only touched upon how to instead use web analytics to measure SEO success. My hope is that once you have a good grasp of what to review and how to use that info, you’ll be more inclined to wean yourself (and your clients) […]


Are The Search Engines Really Indexing Flash?

It seems that once a year for the past five years or so, a search engine representative will stand up at a conference and announce that they are now indexing Flash. Website designers jump with glee, and SEOs lament that all the work they did educating their clients on why they need to curb their […]


The Answer To All Your SEO Questions!

I recently appeared on Vanessa Fox’s new Webmaster Radio show, “Office Hours” where we discussed some of the simple things business owners can do to increase search traffic to their website, but which are often neglected. During the show, Vanessa answered a bunch of frequently asked questions, and her answers often started out with something […]

Google Analytics

SEO Trends From 2008 & A Look Into 2009

In January of 2008, I issued my predictions for the upcoming year in the SEO industry. Now that it’s a year later, let’s look back and see how I did. My first prediction was: SEO Becomes a Top-Of-Mind Priority in Larger Companies I predicted that more large companies and big brands would realize the value […]


Why Usability and SEO Go Hand-in-hand

Many years ago, when Danny Sullivan was still part of Search Engine Watch and the Search Engine strategies conferences, a few of us approached him on having a session on usability. Surprisingly, he dismissed the suggestion saying that while usability was a great topic, it wasn’t really a search marketing issue. Thankfully, Danny did eventually […]


SEO For Big Brands

For the 13+ years that our SEO company has been in the biz, we’ve consulted with businesses of varying sizes and types. From one-person professional practices–to huge, globally branded corporations–and just about everything in between. While SEO best practices are nearly the same for most websites, there are different tactics and strategies you need to […]


Best SEO Practices During A Website Redesign

Performing a complete website redesign is a lot of work and a daunting process. Whether you want to keep your existing rankings and targeted search engine traffic, or you are using your redesign process to get started on a new SEO campaign, there are a number of best practices to keep in mind.


Stop the Confusion! Use SEO Terms Correctly

We have a problem in the search marketing industry, and it’s getting big enough to potentially threaten our livelihoods. The problem is especially dangerous in that customers seeking out SEO services are more confused than ever, which is unfortunate since SEO is no longer a new industry. A big reason for the confusion is the […]


6 Common Website Mistakes That Are Costing You Money

As I’m reviewing company websites to prepare for our August SEO Training Class, I’m struck by how often I see the same website mistakes. Since we’ve been offering the SEO classes over the past 7 months, we’ve reviewed over 40 websites. In each class of 6 online marketers, there’s never a dearth of problems to […]


3 Types Of Blogs That Totally Suck

Blogs. They’re the best thing since sliced bread. Everyone with a website needs one. Or do they? Lately, I’ve seen numerous instances of blogs that exist because people have heard that they need to create a blog for SEO purposes. The problem with this, of course, is that any time you do anything just for […]


What You Can Learn From Google’s “Site” Operator

Google has a set of advanced search operators that can be accessed either through the advanced search page, or by using specialized commands in conjunction with your query from any Google web search box. One of the most useful for search engine optimization is the “site:” operator. Google’s “site:” is an advanced search operator that […]


Diagnosing The SEO Health Of Your Website

Is your website sick? In many ways, SEO consultants are like doctors, only instead of analyzing your personal health symptoms, we analyze the overall health of your website. It’s true we’re not working with life or death situations the same way doctors do, but having a website that is not receiving all the targeted search […]


We Don’t Need SEO Standards!

Last month I attended the SMX West session in Santa Clara entitled Is it Time for Search Marketing Standards? It was an interesting session, but I wasn’t really sure where I stood on the issue at the time. Now that I’ve had a few weeks to think about it, I’ve come to the conclusion that […]


Is Your Website Copy Crystal Clear?

Pretend you don’t know anything about what your company offers and you stumbled onto it somehow. Can you tell immediately what it’s all about? Can the search engines? Do this exercise with each inner page of the site as well. Is what each page has to offer truly crystal clear? Or does your website presume […]


How SEO Has Evolved Over The Years

As I write this on New Year’s day, I can’t help but reflect on how SEO has changed during the more than 12 years since I first started optimizing websites. I was browsing through my hard-drive looking for a document I had saved that had various article ideas in it, when I stumbled upon a […]


SEO Is Not An Option, It’s A Requirement!

Recently, there was a thread in the High Rankings Forum asking whether SEO is an extra skill or a prerequisite for any website designer/developer. It was a great question that spurred a lot of conversation. It goes without saying that the average small-business owner in 2007 knows that they need a website. But do they […]

Paid social

Social Media Marketing: The New SEO?

Fall is the time of year when we start to look at where search marketing is heading. Looking at the latest search marketing conference agendas, articles, and online news in the SEM space, it certainly appears that social media marketing and networking are the wave of the future. To a certain extent, they are. Social […]


Avoiding Clueless-Is As Clueless-Does SEO

Sometimes I think SEOs have lost the plot. Not all SEOs, mind you, but many, especially the newbies. It’s like they don’t understand the reason for doing the SEO things that they know they need to do. I think many walk around with a checklist of SEO-type duties and set off to do them, yet […]


Top Ten Organic SEO Myths

SEO myths get crazier every year. Some are based partially in reality, and others have spread because it’s often difficult to prove what particular SEO action caused a resulting search engine reaction. For example, you might make a change to something on a page of your site, and a few days later notice that your […]


Over-optimization Is Like Being a Little Bit Pregnant

Here’s a quick test for you. Don’t worry, it’s only one question. True or false: Today’s SEO techniques could be tomorrow’s search engine spam with one turn of the algo crank. What do you think? Is what you do to optimize your site going to be considered search engine spam one day because of a […]


Keyword Stuffing Is Gross And Disgusting!

June was a busy travel month for me. I spoke at the SMX conference in Seattle and SES in Toronto, as well as at our own High Rankings Search Marketing Seminar. The common thing throughout my travels (besides discussing search marketing) was the abundance of food! On the road, you can’t help but eat, and […]


Keep The Faith When The Algo Changes

One common mistake I’ve seen SEOs make since the dawn of search engines is tweaking their pages every time a change in ranking occurs. This is partially due to the fact that SEOs are notorious for mixing up cause and effect. Rankings for any given keyword phrase change constantly due to a variety of factors. […]


You Can’t Fake Real Content

If you read SEO articles and forums, you’ve surely read over and over again how important “good content” is for your SEO efforts. You’ve heard how you need to write lots of informative articles about whatever it is you offer. Some SEO types even say to write an article a month or a week or […]


Don’t Sweat the Small SEO Stuff

Among clients, forum members, newsletter subscribers, and seminar attendees, many hours of my day are spent answering questions about organic SEO. One thing I’ve noticed is that newbies and oldies alike are paralyzed when it comes to optimizing their websites because they have an irrational fear of doing something wrong. Part of this fear and […]


The Duplicate Content Penalty Myth

One thing that has plagued the SEO industry for years has been a lack of consistency when it comes to SEO terms and definitions. One of the most prevalent misnomers being bandied about is the phrase "duplicate content penalty." I’m here to tell you that there is no such thing as a search engine penalty […]

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