Monday, April 23, 2007 - Most recent posts

Directories - the better ones! Get more backlinks

Directories - the better ones! Get more backlinks

Marketing a website is a time consuming continual task for any new or existing owner/webmaster. One of the most important marketing tasks is maintaining and improving your PageRank (PR). To do this means gaining relevant (related to your content/subject matter) good quality links back to your website. A good way to gain those links back is by giving something away free, or using viral marketing (publishing a controversial video for example) then you will have many other sites mentioning your website.

For those that do not have something to give away free (or your freebies have all gone), and your marketing tactics caused nothing more than a sniffle then don't despair as there are directories where you should list your website. But this IS VERY TIME consuming as you need to check each directory properly before adding you link. You must at least check the directory is not a banned by Google.

Also you should verify for yourself that the quality is good, the PR is worth your time submitting (if its less 4/10 then it probably will is not worth your time), cost is right, and a relevant section/category exists for your business type.

Below are several directories which I consider to be good and reliable (at least at the time of posting). Feel free to check them out before submitting. I have added the PR=Google PageRank, and BL=back links (correct at date of publishing) to help you evaluate each directory. Those in bold are the best of the best bunch.

(note that details are correct as of April 2007, quality of each site could improve or decrease over time, you should check for yourself before using any of the sites listed below)

Directories - free listings
: (free PR8 BL: 3190000) (free PR6 BL: 8770) (free PR6 BL: 12600)

Directories with reciprocal link required: (PR5 BL: 18200) (PR6 BL: 148000) (PR6 BL: 17300) (PR5 BL: 25900) (PR4 BL: 12300)

Directories - Paid listings: (cost shown is per year, but check each site yourself) (cost 50EUR PR7 BL: 57900) (cost $9pa PR4 BL: 3740) (cost $10PR4 BL: 408) (cost $10 PR6 BL: 14500) (cost $34.95pa PR7 BL: 894000) (cost $25 PR6 BL: 16200) (cost $49pa PR6 BL: 1570) (cost $40 PR6 BL: 8770) (cost $25 PR6 BL: 16200) (cost $10 PR6 BL: 2500) (cost $10 PR5 BL: 3700) (cost $35 PR6 BL: 80300) (cost $25 PR6 BL: 31500) (cost $299 PR8 BL: 85600 - IMO not worth it!)

There are a whole load more here: but you will need to sift through the tosh!

Know any more that are dependable? Post it now...

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007 - Most recent posts

Google checkout now in the UK - but how good is it?

Google Checkout is now available in the UK
(mentioned as all web hosts need to process online payments and often recommend payment solutions for their clients).

Are you a retailer using it?
Or are you a shopper that has used it?

Let me know your experiences of using Google Checkout...

I am very interested in knowing, as will many others.

I have heard (not tried it myself yet) that you need to have a Google account to buy a product via Google checkout. Is this correct? Wont this put off a potential buyer?

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Wednesday, January 31, 2007 - Most recent posts

notes before website redesign or moving host

Points to note before you redesign your website or moving host...

When you re-design your website, or move hosts (read more on moving hosts here), you need to follow certain rules else your visitors could receive 404 errors (page not found) and you really do not want googlebot find this error!

Ensure you:
1. Retain exiting page and folder names (including file extensions)
2. Never ever remove the old site and replace it with:
"This website is currently under redesign, back soon"
STUPID, stupid, never remove your old pages - upload your new pages over-writing the old pages.

If you follow these simple steps your existing pages will retain their page rank and traffic.

If you do need to remove a page then issue a 301 error (page moved permanently) see here how to issue such errors then googlebot and your real visitors will not receive a 404 error.

Hope that helps maintain your website page rankings for the long term


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Tuesday, January 30, 2007 - Most recent posts

Moving web host is stressful!

But what if you need to move hosts?

If you are not happy with your web host, or you have found your website is not listed within your own country's search results on Google as your host has placed your account on a foreign server. Here is how to check where your host has placed your website!

So you need to move...
You will have to go through some pain! Sorry. But remember this: anything worth doing is never easy.

If you have control of your domain name then it should be a simple task of changing the nameservers (so long as your website is setup on your new host). But if your web host manage your domain for you then you need to contact them to check their procedure for transfer of the domain (costs can be charged). If you are looking to transfer to the UK then try a real UK web host which do not charge to transfer in, or out.

Make it worth the effort, ensure you choose the right host....

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Monday, January 29, 2007 - Most recent posts

Google - Importance of inbound links (links from other sites to yours)

The more Google trusts your website the more traffic you will get. So you need to increase that trust.

But how do you improve Google's evaluation/trust in your website and pages?

Simple - increase your IBL (inbound links), but ensure each link is of good quality and relevant.

Before trading links with a website ensure you check them out. Check their PR and IBL. If its not high enough do not link back to them.
You can check this here:

You need to get links from relevant websites (with related content, and subject matter), you can only do this by manually checking the website yourself. Take a few minutes to check the content yourself, is it of reasonable quality? And check it is not just a website of links.

Ensure you use the most optimised keywords for your product. This is very important when building your IBL. You should offer your prospective link site something like the following:

Note the keywords are within the anchor text, here the words: WHY choose the UK for web hosting.
Spending a little time here to correctly choose your keywords will pay-off for a long time into the future, so take your time ;-)

Other things to avoid:
- link farms, never add your link to these sites, you could get banned as well as the link farm.
- linking to foreign sites (unless you need international traffic, link to your indigenous neighbours; read details on why you should host in your native country here).

Work on your IBL and you will see your PR rise and in turn your keyword relevance. This will eventually lead to more traffic to your website as Google sees your site as more relevant than others for your chosen keywords.

Hope you found that helpful? If not, or want to add your input then please post your comments below...

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Friday, December 01, 2006 - Most recent posts

HTML and Meta tags - do they help your website?

HTML and Meta tags - do they help your website?

HTML lang tag
The following can help to inform search engine robots on the language of your content, using the HTML tag like this:
html lang="en-GB"
This can help when indexing your website as per language (and may improve your country specific listing too).
You will find more on this here:

Meta tags
The robots tag - which some recommend using is the robots tag with the content attribute set to NOODP like this:
I would suggest you DO NOT use this as it tells the robot NOT to use any of the Open Directory Project descriptions. Think about this logically, the ODP is a human edited directory and is still one of the most trusted sites for website descriptions in the World, and you are telling the robot to not use it. If you were that robot collecting that data you wouldn't then trust that website, and maybe decide to exclude it or flag it for manual checking, either way the outcome is not good. Read more on the GoD (Google official documentation): Google on meta & robots

Do use the the tags:
META "description" CONTENT="Where/why you should host your website..."
META NAME="keywords" CONTENT="UK web hosting, location country, google listings, etc"

But do not over use these and do not expect them to provide you with a massive boost.

So correct HTML can help, as can meta tags but they can also hinder your website, so add them with care. And remember to ensure your website is listed within Google's country-specific saerch results you must host in your native country (or at least be using a country specific domain name, e.g.

Happy webmastering everyone


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Saturday, November 25, 2006 - Most recent posts

Googlebot: Preventing Duplicate Content

Duplicate content caused by your root AND index pages being indexed

You can find your content being indexed for the root and the index.php (the default page which can also be: index.html, index.htm, default.html, index.asp, etc.) pages like this:
www.Mydomain,com/index.php AND www.Mydomain,com
Especially if you have inadvertently linked to the index file (www.Mydomain,com/index.php), rather than the root (www.Mydomain,com). This situation can and often does occur with subfolders too.

Duplicate content caused by multiple domains on the same web space
Do you have more than one domain mapped to the same website/web content?
If so then you are not alone. This can have a negative affect on your pr and SEO.

Consider the affects it can have on search bots (googlebot, etc) finding duplicate content:
finds domain1 then domain2 which both map to the same web space. It could then decide to drop domain1 in favour of domain2, or worse still drop both domains!

Duplicate content caused by your domain being indexed with and without the "www"
www.Mydomain,com AND Mydomain,com
This is just like having two domain names pointing to the same content, it creates duplicate content.

So what do you do about it? There are two options.

The first option is where you are able to move the domain(s):
host each of the domain on their own web space with unique content.

The second option is where you are unable to host the domains on separate web space with separate unique content:
is to issue a HTTP status code: "301 Moved Permanently"

Below is the PHP code to redirect the traffic using an appropriate header and issue a HTTP 301 permanently moved status.
WAIT - is this correct? Yes, check with GoD (Google's official Documentation) here:
Using PHP you can use this to redirect traffic (for ASP, ColdFusion and .htaccess methods see other relevant reading below) and tell googlebot the pages have moved, add this PHP to the top of your PHP pages:
$PHP_URI=$_SERVER['REQUEST_URI']; // folders and filename - used over PHP_SELF as will NOT pickup on filename from root access (webserver loads default file: index.php)
$HTTP_HOST=$_SERVER['HTTP_HOST']; // domain name, may include .www
if ($HTTP_HOST=="localhost") $main_url="localhost"; // useful for testing on localhost
else $main_url="";// * CHANGE to your domain to be indexed
if( (!ereg("www.",$HTTP_HOST) AND ($HTTP_HOST!="localhost") ) OR (ereg("index.php",$PHP_URI)>0) )
$the_folder = str_replace("index.php", "", $PHP_URI);
header ('HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently');
header ('Location: http://'.$main_url.$the_folder);

*Make sure you check which domain you should add here, and whether you it should or should not include "www". Only you can know this by checking your website stats and the current indexed domain and pages with Google (the above PHP code can be downloaded here: )

Duplicate content is to be avoided at all costs, it will harm your website in the long term. You should always work towards UNIQUE content:

Other relevant reading:

Google’s Matt Cutts on Duplicate Content:

ASP, .htaccess, and Coldfusion methods of issuing a 301 HTTP status:

This post follows the information from:

Recommended UK Dedicated Servers
Recommended UK web hosting

Have fun and remember "content is still king".

Send me your comments...

Dave ;-)

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