Website Design, Internet Marketing, DC
Written by Stu Kushner

Stop and Block Referrer Spam

 Website Design, Internet Marketing, DCI recently started noticing some new traffic on the websites that we host and manage. What was unusual was that the sites were showing up as referral sites on almost every one of our websites. Our sites all get traffic from Google, Bing, Yahoo and such. But the 2nd and third tier traffic usually comes from more industry specific sources. So, when almost all of our sites were getting referred traffic from a single new source, that was a bit alarming.

We were the victim of Referrer Spam. Referrer Spam is created by unscrupulous marketers that create a network of web crawlers that seek out websites and create fake traffic to them. The traffic gets recorded into the analytic logs on the websites in order to fool the search engines in the hopes of creating higher page rankings for the marketers clients.

The traffic that they create does not physically harm the websites. But it might damage the page rank of your site if Google and the rest decide to punish sites that don’t protect themselves against these crawlers. So, I researched how to block the Referrer Spam and found that although I can’t keep the bots from visiting my client’s sites, I can keep them from accessing the logs that record their visit. That way the traffic they are trying to create does not show up in the analytics. So, it’s like they were never there.

Do you have analytics on your site? If you do, look for Referring Visits from the following sites:

  • .darodar.com
  • bestsub.com
  • buttons-for-websites.com
  • casinobonustips.com
  • civilwartheater.com
  • co.lumb.co
  • cukwiki.com
  • econom.co
  • entourank.com
  • ilovevitaly.com
  • make-money-online.7makemoneyonline.com
  • semalt.semalt.com
  • similarpages.com
  • webstatsdomain.org

We had three of these crawling around on our sites. They boosted the traffic but the fake numbers were not helpful. And keeping our sites clean and honest will boost our credibility with the search engines. So, I believe that this was an important task. If any of these are showing up on your site, call your website develop immediately and have them install safeguards against this intrusion.

Or, call us at 202-462-4290. We will look at your site and advise you at no cost.

SEO, Content Writing,Website Management
Written by Stu Kushner

Creating Magnetic Content

 Marketing, SEO, Content Writing,Website ManagementI have two businesses. Or, maybe your can look at them as two divisions within one business. This site is my website design and Internet marketing business. And the other division is my office computer cabling business at www.ProgOffice.com. I created two separate websites because the work is very different and to put them on one site would dilute the expertise of each.

But where they do complement each other is in my ability to use my marketing skills to attract business to my cabling site. I do that by following these basic guidelines:

  • Create a site that is clear and easy to navigate
  • Make the site interesting
  • Project a professional image
  • Create helpful content
  • Optimize the content to make it attractive to the search engines

There are other things but those three are my basics. And if you do a search in Google for “office cabling in Washington DC”, you will probably see my site on the first page. You might find it there more than once.

Typically, the home page attracts the most traffic as the landing page for a visitor from a search engine. But my site gets most of it’s traffic from two special pages that I created. Those pages are a cabling pricing page and also a page that is an analysis of cabling upgrade choices. Writing those two pages more than doubled the traffic to my website and it helped establish my little cabling company as an authority (in the eyes of Google) in the cabling community.

Those two pages attract visitors to my site from all over the world. It answer two of the most important questions in the cabling industry. And the first one, pricing, is one that most of my competitors are reluctant to share.

And my reward is that if you are looking to get computer network cable installed in the Washington DC area and you look for a company on Google, Progressive Office Cabling will almost always show up on the first page.

So, what you need to do is think about the very most important questions that your clients might ask you and then write about it and put it on your website. If you do, you just might double your traffic. The worst that can happen is that will have some additional, new helpful content on your site.

Written by Stu Kushner

Most People Won’t Actually Read Your Landing Page – How to Get Your Message Across Anyway

By Sean Work

F-Pattern

The world today is cluttered and busy. With millions of pages online, people have been forced to filter their content intake. They consume only the content that is relevant to them.

The unfortunate bottom line is no one will read your great offer on your stunning landing page if it isn’t relevant. And, it can’t convert if people don’t read it. That’s why you need to write your landing page with all three types of viewers in mind – readers, scanners, and bottom feeders.

The Three Types of Readers and How to Reach Them

You can optimize your landing page to appeal to each type of reader. By looking at the behavioral psychology of different viewers and how they consume information on the web, you can create an effective landing page that will result in the most conversions.

1. Readers are your most loyal viewers. They start at the top of the page and read every word throughout the post. They are your ideal viewer. However, we live in a world with increasing Internet “clutter” and decreasing attention spans. Therefore, the vast majority of your audience will not fit into this category.

How to reach them – To take care of your readers, there’s just one thing you have to remember. Content is king. All you have to do to win over a reader is present clear, powerful body copy.

2. Scanners read your headline and a few sentences in the introduction. If they’re still interested, they continue to skim through, focusing on your subheadings, highlighted terms, and images to determine if a specific section is worth taking the time to read. Scanners read very little of your content, focusing instead on the words and images that visually stand out.

Scanners, most likely, will make up the majority of your audience.

Web usability consultant Jakob Nielsen found in …read more    

SEO, Content Writing,
Written by Stu Kushner

A Beginner’s Guide to Lead Conversion with Social Media

By Sean Work

 SEO, Content Writing, management

So, you’ve been publishing on Facebook, Twitter and maybe a few other social media platforms, and you’ve built up a decent following in each channel. Your audience is starting to engage more and more with your content.

Maybe you’re wondering, “Okay, what’s next? How can I take this to the next level? How can I use social media to drive leads for my business?”

Done right, social media can be an extremely powerful tool for lead generation, but getting there takes time, patience, a lot of testing and the dedication to post highly-valuable content for your audience.

This guide focuses on how to generate leads with non-paid content in social media. Social ads are also an excellent for leads, and maybe it’s something I’ll talk about in a future post. For now, we’ll learn how to create content for Facebook and Twitter that inspires clicks and conversions, and how to measure the results of your social lead gen efforts so that you can show your boss just how valuable social media can be for your business.

Here we go.

Optimize How You Link to Your External Content

In order to be effective at generating leads with social media you need to treat it as a key part of your overall content marketing machine. This means that social media becomes a place where you distribute high-value content to your audience––content found on your blog, the resources section of your site or on landing pages.

But it’s not just about the value of the content you’re linking to; what really counts is how you format the posts in each channel.

Before diving into how to optimize your posts for lead generation, let’s take a look at three possible lead generation paths for social:

  1. Social channel > Blog post with link to a relevant landing page (gated content) > lead
  2. Social channel > …read more    
Written by Stu Kushner

The End of Link Building as we Know It

By Gryffin.com

Posted by Gryffin.com

The entire online marketing industry is still up in arms after Matt Cutt’s post on his blog title: The Decay and Fall of Guest Blogging for SEO. Guest Blogging was one of the last horizons that people considered safe for  White Hat  link building. So what now? Is guest blogging truly dead?

Part One

What I’ve learned from being a Link Audit Junkie

Before we can talk about guest blogging, I have to share with you what I’ve learned from two years of deep-diving into link audits and detailed competitive research.

After the first Penguin hit on April 24, 2012, I focused on performing in-depth research to identify patterns in penalized sites. What I quickly noticed was that most people who were penalized had very clear footprints in their backlink profiles. These were not easy to detect if you only looked at the profile of the individual sites, but when you ran a competitive link audit and established averages for the keyword sector as a whole, this became a  meter  from which to judge a specific site link footprints.

Later I incorporated private tools that allow you to search for patterns within a site’s backlink profile. These patterns include links on the same IP address or C class, links with similar or duplicate text, links with the same anchor text, links with the words articles in the URL, even link patterns that are two levels removed (the links to the links).

For the last 12 months or so, most of the sites that I looked at that were penalized had the following in common:

  • High density of money keywords in anchor text
  • Unnatural anchor text profile
  • Many links from article marketing directories
  • Many links from …read more    
Written by Stu Kushner

50+ Google Analytics Resources – The 2014 Edition

By Sean Work

Google Analytics is one of the best free data analysis tools on the web. But having this powerful tool at your disposal is irrelevant if you don’t know how to harness its potential. People say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but whether you’re a beginner at analytics or an expert, there is untapped wisdom in the posts below.

For Beginners

These posts should guide you through getting Google Analytics set up and getting started.

  1. The Complete Guide to Setting up Google Analytics – This post is an opportunity to identify what code you’ll need, the account structure, and various other things necessary to get set up successfully.
  2. Beginner’s Guide to Google Analytics – This three-part series delves into setting up your account (part 1), setting up goals (part 2), and measuring visitor interaction (part 3).
  3. Google Analytics Tutorial for Beginners 2014 – Video guide on how to navigate the Google Analytics interface and use certain features.
  4. A Guide to Getting Started with Analytics – Goes into detail about how to understand what your traffic is doing and which trends to watch.

Data Segmentation

The ability to segment data is one of the most important aspects of Google Analytics. It will allow you to compare data and make judgments.

  1. 16 Google Analytics Advanced Segments Tips – A combination of different segments you can apply to your analytics data to get insight. Examples include segmenting based on which type of traffic spends the most or which type of traffic bounces immediately.
  2. Segment Average Visit Duration in Analytics – See how you can get a better view of what average visitor duration means by segmenting your traffic.
  3. Google Analytics: Tracking Demographics of Ecommerce Visitors – A blog post on how to get demographic reports and how to analyze this data.
  4. Calculating the …read more    
Written by Stu Kushner

10 Things I Have Learned Over the Years Running an SEO Business

By Firestarter-SEO

Posted by Firestarter-SEO

This article, blog, guest post, or whatever you want to call it, is written for those who are new and learning SEO. I hope I don’t come off as cocky or arrogant. I simply want to help make the SEO community a better place. After practicing SEO for several years and assisting businesses in succeeding online, I feel I have learned some very valuable lessons I’d like to share with those who care.

1. Read These Documents

As the SEO market becomes saturated with new content each day, there are some pieces of content that have withstood the test of time. I would categorize the following SEO related documents as  must read. I wouldn’t say they need to be completely comprehended but they definitely should be read.content

  1. The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine: This paper is essentially the birth of Google. Whether or not everything in this paper is still current and relevant is debatable. However, the article provides valuable insights on how Google is/was supposed to operate.

  2. The PageRank Citation Ranking: Bringing Order to the Web: Any experienced SEO reading this knows PageRank is not what it used to be. However, it is fascinating to study the value of links and the authority they can pass. Understanding how links work and why they are important are essential to being successful at SEO.
  3. Search Engine Optimization Secrets: I did not realize how important links were until I read this book. Danny Dover said something along the lines of, Most of the problems SEOs run up against can be addressed by adding inbound links. In my opinion this is one of the better books on SEO.
  4. Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide: This piece …read more    

wordpress, online marketing
Written by Stu Kushner

Top 5 Ways to Increase Your Visitor’s On-Site Time

By Tom Ewer

online marketing, On Site Time

You make an assumption when building a WordPress site. That assumption is that people will look at everything you want them to look at, just because it’s there.

In an ideal world, yes, the quote from Field of Dreams would ring true: “If you build it, they will come.” However, the problem has more to do with keeping visitors on your site rather them getting them there in the first place. Increasing your visitor’s on-site time has been directly linked, time and time again, to increasing lead generation and conversions.

So basically, you need to be concerned with this very important factor of web development. Thankfully, there are many ways you can optimize the visitor’s experience to increase on-site time right from within WordPress.

1. Add Infinite Scroll to Posts

WPMU DEV cites Atlantic Media’s Quartz magazine as a good example of this technique put into practice. When you read posts on this site, you’ll notice a funny thing once you arrive at the bottom of the page — a new post loads automatically. This is inspired, because instead of asking the reader if they want to read something else on your site, you automatically present new content for them to read. The mere act of scrolling presents another piece of related content, which is practically guaranteed to increase on-site time.

You can add infinite scroll on your WordPress site by installing a plugin designed for the job.The most popular choices out there right now are as follows:

Infinite-Scroll

Infinite Scroll Plugin

The Infinite-Scroll plugin is simple and straightforward. For most themes, all you have to do is activate it and it will automatically work on all of your post pages. When a visitor nears the bottom of a page of posts, the next page will be automatically loaded. There’s …read more    

online marketing, content writing,SEO
Written by Stu Kushner

The Real Truth About Google and Guest Blogging

By Sherice Jacob

online marketing, content writing,SEO

Matt Cutts, Google webmaster evangelist, recently stirred up a storm of controversy by announcing that guest blogging was “done.” He later clarified the statement by saying that guest blogging purely for SEO was done.

But you’re a KISSmetrics reader, and you already knew that – right?

So what’s the real truth behind Google’s newest announcement? Are you going to be penalized for blogging on other sites? Are your rankings going to collapse because you have blog contributors? Not likely. But there are a few caveats you’ll want to keep in mind whether you’re considering guest blogging as a promotional outlet or looking to bring guest bloggers on board to freshen up your site content.

If You’re a Blog Publisher

DON’T: send out waves of open invitations to anyone and everyone looking to contribute. You will get substandard writing, perhaps even content that has been “spun” (meaning words have been exchanged and sentences shifted to give the “appearance” of a new article to avoid Google’s duplicate content penalty).

DO: Take the time to research experts in your niche. Who are the prolific, consistently good writers that attract comments and invite discussion? Assemble your guest blogging “dream team” and don’t be afraid to reach out to knowledgeable professionals in your field to invite them to contribute. By the same token, don’t be surprised if they ask about your budget. You get what you pay for, and high quality, well-researched posts take time to write.

Quora is a great place to find knowledgeable professionals who may be open to the possibility of guest blogging for you. Simply type in your topic to find questions asked (and answered) around it.

Blogging is one broad topic on Quora with thousands of followers

You can then click on the avatar of the person answering to …read more    

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