Archive for July, 2007

Why does Google under-report backlinks?

Tuesday, July 31st, 2007

I have spent hours in recent weeks trying to answer this question. So far I’ve come across three reasons why Google under-reports backlinks:

  1. Google only gives credit for what they consider to be high quality links. An example of a high quality link when a website links to an article or product description on your website because it has relevant information.
  2. Google only gives credit to web pages with a page rank of 4 or higher. I would take this claim with a grain of salt because ther is sooo much mis-information about page rank out there. To learn more about what page rank is and how to use it, read this post about page rank on the High Rankings forum by Scottie Claiborne.
  3. Google Deliberately under-reports backlinks. Read the post “Why Don’t My Links Show Up in Google?”

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The Search Engines Don’t Know You Changed Your Name

Wednesday, July 18th, 2007

I’m working with a new client who contacted me after their website rankings dipped. The Director of Sales mentioned that they had recently renamed a bunch of web pages and asked me if that might have had something to do with the problem. As soon as she asked, I felt a thud in my chest. It’s never fun to give a client bad news. Yep. That had something to do with it.

Changing domain names or page names without doing a redirect is like moving and not putting in a change of address with the post office. You don’t have to put in a change of address but don’t expect your mail or your website traffic to find you if you don’t.

So what’s a redirect? It’s essentially a change of address for your website or web pages. It’s a way of telling the search engines that the website or web pages formerly names ABC are now named YXZ.

A “301 redirect” is a permanent change of address while a “302 redirect” is a temporary change of address. You’re probably thinking “Then I want to do a 301 permanent redirect.” But wait we’re talking about SEO so it’s not that simple. Read the article Switching to a New Domain Name Without Losing Your Google Rankings in the High Rankings Advisor to learn more.

If you need to redirect a domain name or individual pages, all you have to do is type in “301 redirect”, “directions for a 301 redirect” or “how to do a 301 redirect” and you will get lots of help.

Fortunately things will turn out okay for my client. The name change was a good idea since the new pages contain nice juicy key words in them. In a few months they’ll be back where they were and moving upward.

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