On-Page Optimization Tactics You Don't Hear About

On-Page Optimization Tactics You Don't Hear About - Backlinking, backlinking, backlinking - it seems to be the only part of SEO anyone ever talks about these days! Let's get our noses out of everybody else's sites and back into ours.

On-page optimization is often overlooked and neglected, but your on-page SEO builds the foundation for all of your off-page optimization efforts. We're going to cover some of the basics here: domain names and title tags, but we're also going to get to topics less discussed when dealing with on-page optimization. I'm talking about things like stemming, your outbound links, your use of synonyms and more. Let's get to it!

Domain Name

Your domain name has a powerful effect on how you rank. Having an EMD (exact match domain) for your keyword is going to do a lot for your ranking. However, this is not crucial to your ranking success. Many people, such as myself, choose to have a domain name that they can brand. It depends on what you're looking to do with your site. If you want to make a small niche site targeting a single keyword, then clearly you will want to get an EMD.

But what if the EMD is not available?

This is a very common problem for internet marketers. From a SEO standpoint, you want to choose an EMD with a non-.com extension first if available. If none are available, then tack another word onto the end of your domain name. You will still have your keyword in your domain and receive SEO benefits from this. For the record, it is better to start your domain with your keyword first. For example, it would be better to choose "dogtraineronline.com" rather than "mydogtrainer.com".

Another trick is making your domain name the plural or non-plural version of your keyword. Google now uses a process called "stemming" that understands plurality and "ing" endings on words among other things. If you add plurality to your domain name, you will rank almost as effectively as for the non-plural version. These same principles can be applied to your title tags, header tags, and meta tags.

Title and Header Tags

We're going to apply the same ideas to our title and header tags. You want to include your keyword, but you can't always just use your keyword. In this case we are going to do the same thing we did with our domain name. Put your keyword first then add more text. Also, with stemming in mind, you can use different tenses or plurality for your keyword. There is also another clever strategy you can use to rank for your keyword without even using it!

Ranking with Synonyms

People don't talk about this too often, but Google actually considers synonyms when choosing results for queries. What does this mean? It means that you can rank for the word "manual" with the word "instructions". Do a Google search right now, seriously right now! Pick a word (manual if you'd like) and put a ~ in-front of it. Example search: ~manual. Every bolded word in the results page is considered to be a synonym. This means that using these words more often is going to help you rank for your keyword as well. They are like super-related LSI keywords.

Text Formatting

There are ways to optimize your text besides keyword density. Text formatting is using bold, italics, font-size, and word placement to improve the relevance of your page to your keyword. Making your keyword bold and/or increasing its font-size will add importance to it in the eyes of the Search Engines. Also, where you put your keyword has an effect as well. Placing your keyword in the first and last sentence of a body of text will improve the relevance of your page as well. With this in mind, here's how you can make a super-optimized blog-post or article:

1) Place your keyword in the title
2) Include your keyword in the first and last sentences
3) Bold your keyword both times
4) Wrap your keyword in the first and last sentences with h1 and h2 tags respectively

and here's the final tip for internal linking or backlinking

5) Use your keyword as anchor text AND bold it

This last trick gets ignored a lot. It's a great way to add even more influence to the importance of your keyword and get more out of your anchor text. These are the little steps that people who say on-page optimization doesn't really matter either forget or don't know about.

The biggest on-page optimization blunder of all is negligence of your link profile and how you link out. The links leading to your site aren't the only ones that affect how you rank!

Outbound Links

How you link out to other sites affects how Google trusts and ranks your site. In the TrustRank white papers that included a patent adopted by Google, they mention how good sites link to other good sites. They also say that "good sites seldom link to bad ones". Use this knowledge to enhance your rankings. Link out to authoritative and trusted sites. If you have a ton of links leading to spammy sites it's going to hurt how your site ranks. You can't control who links to you, but you CAN control who you link to, so don't harm your rankings by linking to bad sites.

As an example of this principle in effect, check out Huffington Post's homepage. Their articles rank very well in the search results and they have a PR 8 homepage. If you scroll to the bottom of their site, you will see a massive amount of "dofollow" links all leading to other major, authoritative sites. It's no coincidence that they rank well in the SERPs (search engine results pages). This is a clear example of a site benefiting from linking out to other good sites and gaining trust from Google.

We have complete control over our on-page SEO, and this means our content and our links. We just talked about outbound links and that leaves us with only one other type of link.

Internal Links

Internal links are the links that lead from one page on our site to another. Now is a good time to state a quick fact about search engines and how they index the web. Search engines do not index websites, they index web pages. This means that a site doesn't have authority; rather a web page has authority. The reason all the pages rank well on an authoritative website is because of internal links.

When a large authority site makes a new page, what does that page have? It has a ton of powerful links from other authoritative pages already on the site. This all occurs because of internal linking. So what does it mean for us? It means we need to have a solid internal link-structure to take advantage of our own link juice.

There's no exact science to how you link your pages. Just having a consistent nav-bar is a start, but there is a lot more you can do. If you use Word Press, there are many different related posts plug-ins you can use that will automatically create links to other related posts for you. I recommend having more internal links than external links. A 1 to 3 ratio is a good reference for your outbound to internal links ratio.

There is a practice called PageRank sculpting that involves severely limiting the number of outbound links you have in order to keep more link juice internally. It sounds like a decent idea, but it fails in practice. PageRank moves more cyclically than recognized and a lot more will stay on your site naturally. Also, we just talked about how outbound links can help you rank - don't be afraid to link to other great sites.


I know that many of us have read through (and possibly purchased) countless guides on SEO and been over the same on-page optimization basics again and again. But that's the thing, they are just the basics! This is why everybody assumes that there's nothing more to it and it's deemed as less important than backlinking. Don't fall into the trap! Take care of your site, optimize the way you use your text, optimize the way you use links, prune it daily like a precious shrub. ( sitepronews.com )
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8 Microsoft Word Shortcuts You Probably Don’t Know

8 Microsoft Word Shortcuts You Probably Don’t Know - Microsoft Word: Love it or hate it, practically everyone uses it. I've been using it so long, I thought I knew everything about it. But I stumbled across some super helpful shortcuts — hidden tricks and timesavers that make Microsoft Word easier and faster.

One caveat for these tips: different versions of Word may have different commands, so some of these may not work in your version. That said, here are my top eight shortcuts:


1. Double Click And Drag

If you're like most people, when you want to move a section of text from one place to another, you use Control-C to copy and Control-V to paste. That's fine. It works. But there's a faster way: Double click or highlight what you want to move, then simply drag what you've highlighted to where you want it to land.

2. Double Underline

You know you can affect text by hitting Control-B to make it bold or Control-U to underline. But if one line of underlining just isn't emphatic enough, Control-Shift-D will double underline. (On a Mac, use Command-Shift-D.)

If that doesn't make your point, you may have to go to ALL CAPS, and I've got a shortcut for that too…

3. Change Case

Instead of retyping everything to change from lower case to Title Case or to UPPERCASE, just highlight the text you want to change, click the case button, and then choose which case you want.

4. Adding Buttons to Your Toolbar

Suppose you just tried using shortcut #3, but the case button isn't on your toolbar, no worries; you can add it (and almost any other command). Go to View, Toolbars, Customize Toolbars, Commands, then scroll to find the command you want — and drag it to where on the toolbar you want it.

5. Add the Date

How many times a day do you type the date? If you do it even once, that's too much. Next time, just hit Alt-Shift-D (or Control-Shift -D on a Mac) to add the date automatically.

6. Quick Parts

This next tip builds on what the Autotext function did in older versions of Word: If you have a certain paragraph of text you regularly need to add to a document — like a boilerplate disclaimer, or maybe directions to your office — turn it into a Quick Part. Here's how:

1. Highlight the text you regularly use
2. Click the insert tab
3. Hit Quick Parts, and choose "Save Selection To The Quick Part Gallery"

Now any time you want to insert that chunk of text into a document, either a new one or and old one you're editing, just hit that Quick Parts button. Just one more click will select which saved Quick Part to insert. This trick will even work as a shortcut for adding a logo or letterhead.

7. Conform Fonts

This one used to drive me crazy: I'd copy and paste some bit of text from another document or from the Web, and then I'd have to click all over the place to get the font size and style to match the surrounding text of my existing document. No longer. Here's all you need to do: Highlight the non-conforming text, then hit Control-Spacebar. Done.

8. Customize Quick Access Toolbar

There is one way to get your most commonly used commands in the same place- that's to customize the Quick Access Toolbar. It's like the center drawer in your desk that has all the stuff you use most in one easy-to-access place. No organization, just (as the name implies) quick access. So take the things you like most and add them to the Quick Access toolbar. Click the little down arrow tab to get to the Customize Quick Access Toolbar drop down menu:

Hit "more commands" and add whatever you use most. You can also position this toolbar below the ribbon if you prefer it to be closer to your document text. ( Upgrade Your Life )
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Excel Shortcuts You Probably Didn’t Know

Excel Shortcuts You Probably Didn’t Know - Microsoft Excel is an incredibly powerful spreadsheet program that millions of people use. It's got so many tools in it that even experts don't always know all the shortcuts. But just knowing a few tricks can vastly speed up — and simplify — your workflow.

Note: Different versions of Excel may have different commands, so a couple of these may not work in your version. That said, here are my top Excel shortcuts that can make you a star amongst the spreadsheet crowd:


1. Insert Sum: Alt =

Summing has to be Excel's most commonly used task, and this trick can save you several clicks every time. To sum a column of numbers, select the cell at the bottom of the column. Then, Alt = will insert the sum function.

2. Select an Entire Column: Ctrl-Spacebar

You probably know that Alt-a will select everything on a page, but if you simply want to select one column, hit Ctrl-Spacebar. And if you want to select a single row, use Shift-Spacebar.

3. Navigate to Top: Ctrl-Home

Big spreadsheets can be many pages long. Instead of scrolling, Ctrl-Home takes you back to the first cell: A1. And Ctrl-End takes you to the last cell.

4. Hide Data: Ctrl-0

Sometimes, you just want to hide some data without deleting it. Here's the shortcut for that: select the column you want to hide, then hit Ctrl-0. To unhide it, use Ctrl-Shift-0. (Note: the "0" is the number zero, not the letter O.)

5. Delete a Cell: Alt-E-D

When you want to fully delete a cell, you can certainly right-click and then hit delete, but I find it faster to keep my hands on the keyboard rather than going for the mouse. Alt-E-D. In my mind, it stands for Express Delete.

6. Add Date: Ctrl-Semicolon

Ctrl-Semicolon inserts today's date. Ctrl-Shift-Semicolon inserts the current time.

7. Show Formulas: Ctrl ~

Functions are the math formulas that give Excel its power. They are math equations that Excel computes and displays. Normally, you enter a function either in the formula bar or directly in the cell, and — when you hit enter — it displays the result. Once that's done, the underlying formula becomes hidden from view. But sometimes you need to check those hidden formulas. Sure, you can go back and click every cell to see them, but if you hit Ctrl and the tilde key, all your formulas will be revealed in their cells. Oh, and in case you didn't know, the tilde key is usually in the upper left corner of your keyboard and looks like this: ~

We'd love to learn your favorite Excel tip in the comments below or on our Facebook page. ( Upgrade Your Life )
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All the Texts, Without All the Costs

All the Texts, Without All the Costs - Frank Radice, the former president of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and now a media consultant, is a compulsive texter. But after racking up more than $1,000 in texting charges on a monthly mobile phone bill two years ago, he began searching for a less expensive way to communicate.

He found apps that allowed him to text free. “Once you try them, you’ll never go back to regular texting,” said Mr. Radice, 62, who texts on an iPhone and iPad using either TextNow or Skype IM.

Even though a text message usually costs the carriers less than a penny to route between mobile phones, they charge customers as much as 20 cents to send a text and another 20 cents to receive one. This adds up to an estimated $20 billion a year in revenue for the wireless industry and a lot of grumbling from consumers who feel abused.

But in the last two years there has been a proliferation of mobile apps, the latest being Apple’s iMessage, that allow users to text free. While they differ in format and ease of use, they all work on the principle of sending and receiving texts via cellphones’ data streams.


“Traditional texts are sent over a defined protocol, like their own channel, that is different from the voice and data channels,” said Michael O’Brien, senior vice president for marketing solutions at Syniverse Technologies, a company in Tampa, Fla., that develops products and services for the wireless industry.

A single text message sent via a texting app uses no more than 160 bytes of data. Most cellphone data plans are 2 to 10 gigabytes (one gigabyte is about a billion bytes). So even if you texted someone all of “War and Peace,” 160 characters at a time, you would still have ample data left on your plan — although you might lose a friend.

TextFree is one of the oldest (circa 2009) and most popular texting apps, particularly among teenagers and preteenagers, who use it to text beyond the limits of their parents’ payment plans. They can also use it to text from their laptop computers, iPod Touches and iPads (bad news for parents who thought they could keep their children from texting by taking away their cellphones). Pinger, the company that offers TextFree, says the median age of its 15 million subscribers is 14.

Advertising supports TextFree and its chief competitors, TextNow and textPlus. Ads flash and bob on the bottom of the screen as you type messages, although your recipients see nothing but your text.

Or you can pay to remove the ads. On TextFree and TextNow, it costs $5.99 a year to avoid ads imploring you to buy, say, Energizer batteries. To use textPlus ad-free costs $4.99 a year, but the company is now offering it for $1.99 per year as part of a promotion.

Registered users of these apps get a new phone number for texting. Texts sent to this new number are automatically forwarded to your cellphone or other wireless device. It also appears as the originating number when texts are sent using the app. TextFree and textPlus work on iOS (i.e. iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch) and Android devices, while TextNow is only iOS compatible. But the apps are agnostic about recipients’ devices. You can send texts free to just about anyone, including the more than 60 percent of Americans who don’t have smartphones.

“Some of my friends complain about having to text to a different number,” said Barry Asch, 40, a middle-school teacher in Wellington, Fla., who uses TextFree on his iPhone. “But in this economy, if I can save $20 a month on texting fees, they can get over it.”

TextFree, TextNow and textPlus allow transmission of picture files within texts and have customizable options like special ring tones (sounds like tropical birds, marimba and even flatulence) to announce texts from particular people in your address book. And of course, they have a full range of cartoony emoticons, called emoji, if you’re into that.

On a recent test run of all three services, TextFree was the fastest, most reliable and easiest to use. It also allows you to send texts free to 25 foreign countries while its rivals do not support international service beyond Canada. Moreover, TextFree allows you to text from your computer — a boon to all who prefer a full-size keyboard over a tiny touch screen when they have the choice.

Another option for free texting are instant messaging apps like iMessage, Skype IM, Kik, Google Talk, Facebook Messenger and GroupMe. These might be thought of as digital cliques that offer free texting as long as the people on the other end, even if they are in different countries, have the same app. Regular texting charges apply if users send a text via Facebook Messenger, GroupMe or iMessage to nonusers. Kik, Google Talk and Skype Chat allow correspondence only between users.

You don’t get a new phone number when using instant messaging apps but rather a user name. These services tend to sling messages back and forth with lightning speed and allow texting to groups as large as 100 people, which is good for organizing gatherings. Picture files are also accommodated.

With the exception of iMessage, which is available only on iOS devices, instant messaging apps tend to work well on all types of smartphones — iOS, Android and BlackBerry. Those with a Windows Phone, however, are limited to Kik and GroupMe. Skype IM and Facebook Messenger have the bonus of allowing you to send text messages from your computer when you log onto the Skype and Facebook Web sites.

And then there is Google Voice (not to be confused with Google Talk), which is a no-cost comprehensive communication app that is in a class by itself. While it has a range of useful services — like voice mail, call recording, call forwarding, telephone number porting and voice mail transcription — it also offers unlimited texting to anyone in the United States. Users can elect to have texts sent to their mobile phones as well as have them delivered to their e-mail inboxes.

Texts can also be viewed from the Google Voice Web site, which allows texting from a computer. And since this is a service offered by Google, the texts saved online can be searched using keywords. But, unlike other texting and instant messaging apps, you cannot attach pictures to Google Voice texts.

Deryck Wong, 21, a senior at the University of California, Berkeley, who is majoring in business and economics, uses Google Voice to do all his texting. “I got tired of all the fees from my carrier,” he said. “I’ve gone over my limit before and it was ridiculous how much they charged me per text.” Now he has a cellphone plan that includes just voice and data. He has no texting charges at all, saving him at least $15 a month.

“I spend the extra money on sandwiches at the school’s cafe,” said Mr. Wong, which spares him the frozen food or ramen he would otherwise make for himself at home. “It’s more convenient and tastes a lot better.” ( nytimes.com )
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Gaddafi Shows Why Google is Failing Its Mission in Search

Gaddafi Shows Why Google is Failing Its Mission in Search - Don't expect Twitter-based realtime search anytime soon

As you may recall, Google used to have a realtime search feature. When some topic was hot at any given time, and you did just a plain Google search on that topic, Google would show realtime results mixed right in with the regular results, and you can actually see them rolling in in realtime. It was quite useful in many cases, particularly in breaking news situations. Even when it didn't automatically show up in the search results it was available as an option from the left panel. It was always a useful tool to see what people were saying about anything during the moment.

Do you miss Google's realtime search feature? Let us know in the comments. Find this topic interesting? Why not share this article on StumbleUpon, Facebook, Twitter, or Google+?

The absence of realtime search is glaringly evident on a day like today. This morning, everyone was scrambling to find out the latest on Muammar Gaddafi. As of the time of this writing, the best Google could do on search results, in terms of timeliness, was a news story from about a half hour ago. That may or may not be the best result, but it doesn't help me for finding the very latest, especially in a situation like this where people are frequently tweeting from Tripoli.

No, in this case, Google is no doubt driving a lot of people to Twitter Search, simply because they're not meeting the demand. It seems like a fundamental problem for Google when it is not meeting a search-related demand, given that Google is at its core, still a search company. It's mission is "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful."

Well, realtime information is generally useful when it is accessible in real time.

All Twitter is reporting that Twitter CEO Dick Costolo indicated we should not expect Twitter and Google to come to an agreement to renew their deal any time soon.

That said, Google has indicated in the past that it would bring realtime search back, using data from other sources, including Google+. It had other sources before, but it was clear that Twitter dominated the results. This point was made even clearer when they just removed the feature entirely after losing Twitter data. Apparently, it just wasn't even good enough to offer without Twitter.

So now, they want Google+ updates to replace it. I'm not so sure if there's enough material there, however. Larry Page announced during the company's earnings call last week that Google+ surpassed 40 million members, but how many of them are posting public updates as often as Twitter users tweet? One key obstacle here is that Google+ was designed to offer users the maximum amount of control when sharing updates. This Circles method of sharing practically encourages people not to share data publicly, so that's less data for the realtime search engines, although I could see Google including results from people in your Circles that were shared with you. But I don't know if that's enough to make a huge difference.

One thing, in terms of data from other sources, that could work to Google's advantage, is the subscribe feature recently launched by Facebook. Facebook users can now let people subscribe to their profiles without having to actually be friends with them. This no doubt encouraged a lot of people to share more stuff publicly, knowing that people might want to subscribe to their posts, as if they were following them on Twitter. Again, though, I don't know if there is enough here to make a huge difference, because Facebook and Twitter are just different in the way most people share info.

Twitter is public by default. It's just a better source of public realtime data that is unrivaled at this point. That's just how it is. Without Twitter, Google's realtime search will never be as good as it could be with it. Unless people stop using Twitter, and it doesn't look like that will be happening anytime soon.

Just how important is realtime search? Well, that depends on the user, but as I said, this whole Gaddafi thing is a prime example of when its absence is incredibly obvious. On the anniversary of 9/11, Danny Sullivan reminded us of how awful it was trying to find the latest info about the attacks when they happened. Imagine how much easier that would have been in the realtime search era.

Realtime search is clearly important enough for other companies to continue to try and improve upon it. Just in the last week or two, we've seen new offerings from Bitly, Topsy, and even Google+ itself.

Google+ Update: Real-time Search & Improved Hashtag Support

While each of these options may have be useful, and can probably co-exist with one another, I think most people that think about searching for what's happening right now, think about Twitter. In fact, if you go to Twitter's search page, it actually says, "See what's happening right now."

Without the ability to search "what's happening right now," Google has at least one weakness in search, and is simply not a complete search engine.

What do you think? Does Google need to get Twitter data back for realtime search? How important is realtime search to you? Let us know in the comments. ( WebProNews.com )
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