SEO Test: Do Your Blog Comply With Google Webmaster Guidelines?

By Guest Author // 10 comments
SEO Test: Do Your Blog Comply With Google Webmaster Guidelines?

This is a Guest Article Written by Abrar Mohi Shafee – A passionate blogger who loves to do blogging, Especially for the beginners.

Now-a-days, blogging and SEO are totally relying on each others. We do blogging and consider SEO processes to make the efforts successful. One simple question to you, what did you operate at first on your blog’s SEO campaign? Probably a good amount of people will answer, “Yeah, I submitted my blog to the search engines and the webmaster tools”.

For sure, you went to Google before all. Just like me, you would have submitted your blog to Google Webmaster Tools. But did you ever check what they were expecting from your blog? You might not. Many times we experience problems from the webmaster tools. Even how good is your strategy, generally we see no effective result from them. Do you know why? It’s because Google couldn’t get expected stuffs from your blog.

Do you know you will get higher priority from Google complying their own guidelines? It’s because Google loves to see blogs as per their recommendation. So I think following their guidelines would be the plus points to beat your search competitors. It is sure that all of your competitors won’t be friendly with the guidelines. That’s why it would be easy to simply outrank the competitors with some actionable guidelines. Let’s see how to make it happen.

First of All, Let’s Check Our Blog According to Their Guidelines:

Before all, we have to make sure which elements are missing and what is to implement. Google Webmaster published their own guidelines, but it would be really disgusting to check each element one by one. Why not we use an engine to detect the problems? Yep, there is an awesome resource what we would be happy to use especially in this case. And that is FeedTheBot.

It’s a tool that detects the faults against Google’s webmaster guidelines. So, let’s get into the site and insert our blog addresses. Then see what the report says. For this purpose, I will go with my own blog BloggingSpell:

FeedTheBot Report

Here we can see that my site is almost complying with their guidelines. There is only one major priority to correct and that is sitemap for visitors. And there are two medium priorities, page speed and paid links. The rest guidelines are passed through my blog. So let me explain how I complied with the guidelines and the additional works, what I would need to consider.

#1 Add Value to The Readers

Blogs are intended to provide value to the readers through such quality contents. And that is what Google expected. They generally love blogs that are focused on serving the best to the readers. But unfortunately most of the bloggers misjudge their recommendation. The new generation bloggers think optimization is the first and the foremost thing beyond blogging. But I think that is exactly not.

Yes, it’s true that without SEO there would be hardly visitors. So we have to get ourself involve into it after thinking about the visitors. We have to give higher priority to the readers and then the others. As Google wants, we also have to think about visitors at first. And then we should go for seo and other activities.

#2 Make Blazing Fast Load Speed

Another recommendation from them is page loading speed. To ensure the best user experience, it’s a must to improve the page loading speed. However, in my above report you can see page speed has medium priority that is saying to more improve the speed. Let’s have a look at my blog loading report from Google PageSpeed Insight:

Page Speed Insight Report

You can see my page loads fairly well on the desktop, which could be more improved. My blog loads in less than 1 second. To pass on the FeedTheBot report, you may need 90+ marks there. But that is not necessary to have loading time in less than 1 second. I think loading speed in less than 3 seconds is enough for this purpose. However, you can improve more by following the recommendations by Google Page Speed Insight.

Also Read: 7 Ways To Increase Your Blog's Crawl Rate in Google

#3 Add Sitemaps For Both Users and Search Engines

Now you have to add two different sitemaps, one for your users and another for search engines. Both sitemaps are necessary in two different purposes.

User sitemap provides better user experience with a collection of important links. Here you have to add your important pages where the readers could look and easily navigate to the pages. This type of sitemaps is called HTML sitemaps. And these are especially for users. I haven’t set up it yet. But I will do soon and will recommend you to do also.

Also Read: How to add Cool User Sitemap for Blogger blog

Search Engine Sitemaps are basically XML sitemaps which are created for helping the search crawlers. In XML sites, all the index-able pages are included. So the crawlers could easily look into it and quickly index the pages. That’s why it is necessary for the search engines.

Also Read: How To Submit Sitemap to Your Blogger Blog

According to Google’s guidelines, both of these sitemaps are necessary. So we have to build two different sitemaps for two different purposes.

#4 Add Robots.txt File

In blogs, Robots.txt files are specified to control the indexing of pages. Sometimes we need to exclude a page from being indexed. So what we would do? The better solution is to noindex it through Robots.txt file.

That’s why it is recommended by Google to specify which type of links should be indexed and which types shouldn’t be. Simply create a robots.txt file and you will be successful with this guideline.

Also Read: Blogger Introduced New Search Preference Option

#5 Add Alternative Texts to Images

Generally Google couldn’t read what is written in an image. So they always recommend to use alternative text to the images. In order to add this, we have to add alt attribute to the img html tags.

Here is an example of it: <img src=”image-source” alt=”alternative-text”/>

We have to add the most relevant text to the alternative text section to give an idea to the crawlers what the image is about. It plays an important role in seo as well. So it is necessary in all purposes.

#6 Avoid Dynamic URLs

Google and other search engines can’t properly crawl dynamic urls. A dynamic url means a url with question marks (?) and other similar symbols. This type of urls are not friendly to both users and search engines. So the best practice is to avoid all sorts of dynamic url.

#7 Be Serious of Paid Links and Nofollow Links

Expecting good ranking in search engines, many people buy links which are supposed to be paid links. A few years ago, paid links have been strictly prohibited. Even, a site with paid link would be penalized. So make sure you are not among them.

On the other hand, nofollow links are those types of links which don’t pass link equity. We especially use these for advertisements and other irrelevant links. Nofollow links are similar to paid links. So we have to ensure that the no-follow links are done for reasons. In the above report, there is paid link priority. But that is not a paid link warning. It’s because I have a nofollow link on my homepage. So the notification is to make sure that I am using it for reasons, not as paid links.

Final Words:

We do SEO mainly targeting Google. So we must be complying with their rules and requirements. The requirements are not so hard, but implementing these would surely help you in any way. So I recommend you follow the basic rules I specified and I am sure you will see changes in your ranking.

Wish you all the best for implementing the guidelines.

About The Author
Abrar Mohi Shafee is a passionate blogger who loves to do blogging for especially the beginners. He is the CEO and Founder of BloggingSpell.com. His expertise areas are blogging, seo, social marketing and web designing, You can follow him on his Google+.
Read more

Do You Know These Little Known Benefits Of Creating Longer Posts?

By Guest Author // 1 comment
Benefits Of Creating Longer Posts
This is a Guest Article Written by Ammar – A young blogger who blogs on All Blogging Tips and likes to help small bloggers in building a profitable blog.

After deeply analyzing the benefits and harms of longer blog posts, I think its time for me to let the world know about it too.

In simple words, don't just always trust and follow what someone else, me or your friends say and instead try and experiment it yourself.

If you believe that something can work better if you add some points from your side, you probably should. With that being said, let me take you to the list.

Also Read:

6 Benefits of Creating Longer Posts

Opportunity to Deliver the Best:

Its just that simple. The longer you speak the better you can explain things. So, The longer you write the better you can help out your readers. Hence, longer posts give you the opportunity to explain your point at the best level possible.

I don't believe in "Content is King" and instead I like to add the word "Quality" into this quote. Perhaps it is not possible to count and figure out all the benefits and advantages that one has if he delivers quality content.

Give Them all At One Place:

There is nothing better than getting all things of our needs at one place. Readers really love when they are given more than what they were expecting and that's where longer or extensive posts come into play.

There are a lot of things you can explain related to any topic that you are delivering. Not only you can deliver the high quality content, but you make your readers happy at the same time.

Better Conversations:

Basically, Blogs exist for one purpose and that is conversation on some specific topic. Since, longer posts contain a lot of words, facts and things to think, follow and talk about they result in better and longer conversations.

In simple words, extensive blog posts result in more popularity, exposure and bring a lot more comments, shares as compared to shorter posts.

Anyone who blogs about anything surely wants to hear what people have to say about his work and his thoughts hence, getting good number of comments is always a pleasant thing for bloggers in all kinds of niches.

Improved Writing:

There is a very famous quote that is "Practice makes a man perfect" and it is 100% true. No doubt at all. The more you work on something, the better you get in that. Blogging and writing is no different.

Hence, the longer you write the more beneficial it becomes for you. Writing more and more brings and amazing flow in your articles which is very essential if you want to make a living as a writer/blogger.

And, nothing can be better to improve your writing skills than writing prolonged articles to explain everything at the best level possible.

Chance to Have A Break:

While reading a shorter article, the words are over before a reader actually realizes what kind of information is being poured on him. While on the other hand, the longer articles give the reader a break and Give Some time to think about your words and what you are trying to convince them about.

And, this is why the longer articles result to be more effective and mostly spark the ideas in minds of readers and readers end up praising you and sharing your content around at Social Media.

Easy to Follow:

Since, you get more time to talk to your readers, it is easy for you to tell them what's right and what's wrong.

And, for readers it is easy to get their problems solved using your words. Think about yourself for a moment. What do you find better when you are in trouble?
Guest post by Ammar – A young blogger who likes to help small bloggers in building a profitable blog. Visit his blog.
Read more

Page Rank Update (Unexpected): December 2013

// 31 comments
At last after 10 months, Google has rolled out an unexpected PageRank update yesterday(6th DEC 2013). Last Page rank update was on 4th February 2013.

This is really an unexpected Update. Many webmaster didn't expected that the PageRank update would happened within 2013. Just a couple months ago Matt Cutts said he would be surprised to see an update to Google Toolbar PageRank by the end of this year.

Google Pagerank Update On 6th December 2013

Even through it is an surprise update. I'm happy with this update. After a long time Page Rank for BTNT is increased from PR3 to PR4. BTNT got PR3 on November 2012. After that there has been no change in the PR of BTNT.
I'm happy to announce, Now BlogTipsNTricks is a Page Rank 4 Blog. :D

What is your Page Rank?

You can Check your Page Rank here

Previous Page Rank Updates

Google updates Toolbar Pagerank every 3 or so months:
  • December 5, 2013
  • February 4, 2013
  • November 7, 2012
  • August 2, 2012
  • May 3, 2012
  • February 7, 2012
  • November 7, 2011
  • August 5, 2011
  • July 18, 2011
  • June 27, 2011
  • January 20, 2011
  • April 2, 2010
  • December 30, 2009
  • October 30, 2009
  • June 27, 2009
  • May 27, 2009
  • April 1, 2009

Is Page Rank Really Important?

After the introduction of Google authorship and the long gap in PR update, many webmaster started to think Google has dropped the Page Rank. But yesterday’s update indicates that Toolbar PageRank is not dead.

Google Page Rank is one of many factors taken into account by Google’s search algorithm it’s important not to obsess over it too much. But, Considering the current Google Update, it still has some value in measuring the overall quality of the links pointed to your site.

Has your site’s PageRank changed in this update? Let me know in the comments section.
Read more

Infographic: How to Choose a Domain Name

// 14 comments
Infographic: How to Choose a Domain Name

In all areas of your business, you put time and consideration into the decisions you make, and when it comes to your domain name, consideration is key. Choosing a brand name is one of the most important things you can do for your business. And not just a brand name, but a domain name, as well. Whether you use your company's name or a different name when you set up your website, you have to take many things into consideration. Your brand should convey a great deal of information about you company, your product or service, your goals, and your personality, as well.

Any trademarks, logos, and images that are a part of your website and marketing scheme should be considered when choosing your domain name, and understanding the importance of the extension (whether .com, .net, .org, or another option), as well. If you're only selling in a specific country your domain name extension will be different than if you're selling internationally, for instance.

With so much to consider (and so much resting on the ultimate decision), it is helpful to have actionable steps to follow in order to arrive at the result you want. Below is an infographic that will help you understand the complexities of choosing a domain name in a simple, easy to understand format.

How to Choose a Domain Name [Infographic] by Who Is Hosting This: The Blog
You can use following code to embed this Infographic.
<div class='infographic'>
<img alt="How to Choose a Domain Name [Infographic] by Who Is Hosting This: The Blog" class="infographic_embedder" src="http://www.whoishostingthis.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Domain-Name-for-your-website-1.jpeg" width="100%" />
<div class="infographic_attr"><p>Source: </p><a href="http://www.whoishostingthis.com/compare/" target="_blank"><p>Who Is Hosting This.com</p></a></div>
<div>

P.S. Sorry Guys, It's been almost three months since I published last post, I can't get enough time to publish articles like before. I'll try to update frequently in future. Thanks for your support. Stay Tuned... :D
Read more

5 Reasons Why Bloggers Fail To Make Money

By Guest Author // 30 comments
5 Reasons Why Bloggers Fail To Make Money

Do you make serious money from your blog?

Do you make any money?

About 90 percent of bloggers will answer no to the first question, and many of those will also answer no to the second. Making money online has never been more difficult. All of the methods we used a few years ago have become incredibly ineffective, leaving bloggers scrambling for new ways to earn. Many of them have stopped blogging completely.

You don't want to stop blogging, do you?

The good news is that you can, indeed, earn a decent income while blogging. In a recent guest post I talked about getting people to buy from your blog, which is a great way to turn traffic into money. But today the focus is not on how to make money from your blog, but rather why you're not making money right now.

1. Your design is terrible

The old adage claims that content is king, but that's not necessarily true. It is at least prince, but there is one element that is probably more important: design. Think about it this way. If you visited a site that was poorly designed, would you even bother to read the content? Chances are you'd just leave and think that the page was spam. If your site isn't well designed, it doesn't matter what kind of content you have.

Thankfully, there are many resources for fixing your design problems. Chandeep recently wrote a guide about design mistakes bloggers make, and it covers a lot of basics that I see on too many blogs. Most particularly, image sizes and fonts are the biggest errors that bloggers make. Make your text easy to read, and people will read it. It's really that simple.

2. People can't navigate your site

Navigation falls partly under design, but it is also a category unto its own. A website is not just a single page, but rather a series of pages that link together -- which is why they call it a web. Yet too many bloggers make the navigation process far too difficult. If people don't know how to get around your site, how are they going to become regular readers or customers? When people can't find their ways around, they tend to leave.

What irks me most about poor site navigation is that it's so easy. The WordPress engine allows you to add a full and robust navigation menu, complete with drop-downs, on every single page of your blog. So why not take advantage? Create navigation bar entries for your most popular pages. Add drop-downs for categories and tags. Make sure there's a clear and click-able "home" button. In other words, make sure that you can get essentially anywhere on the site, no matter your current page.

3. You don't make it easy to pay you

To repeat, selling stuff is probably the most effective way to make money blogging these days. Your readers are your potential clients. You can use your blog in large part to inform and entertain them, and in small part to steer them towards your products. It is a balance that has worked for many a blogger seeking to make more money than is available through CPM advertising. Yet even bloggers who get the balance right sometimes don't execute the sale correctly.

The No. 1 rule for any sales process is to make it as easy for the customer as possible. Don't make them fill out extra forms. Don't make them hop around to different sites. The fewer steps between adding an item to a cart and successfully completing an order, the better. Offering more ways to pay also helps. Sure, PayPal might work for some, but not for all. Offering mobile payments is another way to make things easier for your customers. Ease leads to sales. It's the one lesson any online businessperson should never forget.

4. You created your site to rank in Google

In the mid-00s there was a gold rush on the internet. Google had risen to prominence, and by 2003 or 2004 it was driving obscene amounts of traffic. If you ranked highly for a commercial search term, you were almost guaranteed sales. That's when SEO really took off. Of course, when Google realized all the money people were making within its ecosystem, it decided it wanted a larger slice of that pie. In recent years they have made it much more difficult to rank for highly commercial search terms.

This is a problem for bloggers who create their sites with an eye on ranking. Those practices have been flagged by Google. Bloggers who used them in the past have been penalized, and those who continue to use them will continue to get penalized. While you might not rank as highly as before, it is highly recommended that you follow Google's guidelines for high quality sites. Google shouldn't tell you how to make your site, but you should also recognize Google for the potential sales it can bring -- if you do it right.

5. You don't make yourself visible

When people buy something, they want to know the source. Big brands have a huge advantage here. They're instantly recognized, and so people trust them more naturally. When you're a blogger trying to sell products or even services on your site, you have to be forthcoming with people. So smile for the camera and be prepared to divulge a lot about your self. The more people get to know you, the more likely they will be to trust you with their money.

Here are some quick tips for better visibility:
  • When you design your site, leave room for a headshot on the front page.
  • Tell a full story on your About page. Not just what you do, but who you are.
  • Provide your email address. Contact forms just don't cut it.
  • Link to all of your social profiles
If you're failing to make money with your blog, chances are you're failing at one of the points listed above. As far as I've seen, they're the biggest reasons why people fail to make money online.

Let me know do you experienced any of them or do you have any other reasons that blogger fail to make money.

About the author
Joe Pawlikowski has been blogging since 2005, when he launched a free blog on the Blogspot domain. He now writes and edits for several blogs, earning his living through blogging and consulting. He keeps a personal blog, A New Level.
Read more