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  1. #1
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    If content matters ...
    If content matters figure this out ...

    In 1997 i visited my brother-in-law on Ascension island.

    Before I visited I knew very little about the island, and had just got Internet access so had a look on the web but found only one good site by a geologist called Barry Weaver.

    When I got back to the UK after our visit I setup a few pages about our visit and actually got Yahoo to add a category for AI in its directory

    http://dir.yahoo.com/Regional/Countr...ension_Island/

    Fast forward to 2004

    My family visit might be in Yahoo's directory but is no where to be seen in Yahoo web search. However there now plenty of sites about AI on the web, some very good, some a bit basic.

    So on boxing day we set off for AI and I had a brand new digital SLR, had access to the web on AI so decided to write a daily diary, so people back in the UK could follow our daily exploits and view this relatively unknown place.

    http://www.websmith.demon.co.uk/Asce...diary-home.htm

    Six months on the diary hardly registers on Google or Yahoo yet is virtually all content apart from some minor ads at the bottom of each page.
    (When searching for Ascension Island Diary)

    I have not made any specific efforts to do any SEO work on the diary pages, but maybe perhaps I ought to.

    Les

    PS
    The diary is a good read (or so I am told)

  2. #2
    A Real *and* Darn Cool Member! lstolze's Avatar
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    Just wanted to compliment your Spelling and Math lessons at the bottom - good way to get all those keywords in.
    ~Lisa - Brilliant Mastermind, or Nut? You decide!

  3. #3
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    Great site, but it needs some basic optimization. Content by itself won't do it, in itself - the bots need keywords. Get some anchor text for Ascension Island - on the page and in some inbound links. And in an H1-H2-H3 or two in the right places, which is also an assist for readability. People read in chunks and headers help to focus on palatable segments of content.

    Do you have an ODP listing?

  4. #4
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    Thanks webworker for the prod ... I do probably need to go back and check for the SEO basics, got a bit ticked off by the wife for using my laptop too much as it was. (tip of the week : if you buy a digital SLR make sure you get one with USB2 otherwise piccy downloads to laptop take ages)

    Also noticed that I haven't got the exact phrase 'Ascension Island diary' anywhere so will try and weave that in somewhere as well as using H1/2/3


    As for ODP I see my original site is on
    http://dmoz.org/Regional/Africa/Sain...ension_Island/
    so I can't really be greedy and ask for a second entry for the 2005 diary,
    or could I ?

    It will be interesting to see if some seo work now together with the existing content can improve its ranking.

    Les

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by lstolze
    Just wanted to compliment your Spelling and Math lessons at the bottom - good way to get all those keywords in.
    Yes, that was because I could see from the logs how often things were mis-spelt. Initially I used the metatag keywords for the misspellings but then I then Google was no longer using the meta tags to any extent so I had to conjure up a way of putting the mispelling in plain view on the page.

    For anyone interested in what I did, go to
    http://www.websmith.demon.co.uk/AscensionIsland/
    and scroll to the bottom

    Les

  6. #6
    Newbie Market Watcher's Avatar
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    It's a simple formula, really:

    Lots of Content + Lots of (relevant) links + Some light SEO + a couple relevant outbound links per page = alot of traffic.

    I've used the above for over 5 years now, and haven't had a problem getting good organic traffic within 6-8 months or so.

  7. #7
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    I used to be firmly in the content camp, but these days I am not so sure.

    In terms of making money, I make far, far, more from what most here would call non-content sites, but that might be because I have found a couple of niches that work for me.

    Well it will be interesting to see if I can get the diary near the top of the ranking by applying a little and seo know-how and some gentle TLC.

    Les

  8. #8
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    I make far, far, more from what most here would call non-content sites,


    Content ain't king of anything but fevered dreams...
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  9. #9
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    If you build it, he (they) will come...
    That's why they called the movie "Field Of Dreams"...

    Reality is:
    If you backlink it, they will come later, but it'll cost you some time.
    If you PPC it, they will come now, but it'll cost you some money.

  10. #10
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    I am curious why you think you should rank high for - Ascension Island Diary. The phrase does not appear anywhere on the site that I can find.

    As for content versus sales site - both can make money and some may make more for one person that the other. While leader will go on against content sites, I will just say - while she excels at sales sites, maybe she just doesn't get how to make content sites work? Not a knock, but not everything works for everyone the same way.

    Using this site as an example, I don't see why it should rank well or make money. The failure is not on the search engines, but the site.

    Chet

  11. #11
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    chetf - good points.

    websmith - as chetf points out, the phrase you have in there - in your title, description and keywords is "Ascension Island visit". search for it, even contained within quotes, and you'll again see that your site is indexed for it, but rank is horrible. And we're back to the fallacy of content - onpage counts for a lot - but for a machine to integrate the onpage pieces and then put it into context and to gage its importance and relevance to the remainder of the Internet and all related (even remotely so) sites, it needs to weigh the offpage factors - and you have virttually none.

    Look at the sites that rank above yours for this at google:
    "Ascension Island visit" (keep the quotes at google)

    Your posts at ABestWeb out rank the content you have created... ask yourself why...

    There's also a slovakian site (that only returns a 404 error page) that outranks your content...

    Content by itself... remains that way.

  12. #12
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    The fact that "Ascension Island visit" is not present is due to an oversight on my part. I wanted to build a template page before I went but our flight got brought forward a day to boxing day and caused domestic chaos so no time for webby things.

    I hadn't looked at the dairy much since completing it, and then curosity over the last google updated prompted me to have a look. Which just goes to show how carefult one ahs to be to make sure one sorts out target words and phrases.

    I am going to put some time aside soon to put some seo effort in. The diary was for fun and not to make money, albeit I have added some ads at the bottom of each page.

    Les

  13. #13
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    I have now tidied up the titles and meta tags and Google has presumably picked them up as now the results are a bit weird.

    If you search for
    Ascension Island Diary
    this thread comes out at #4 currently
    and my pages are way down, if at all, as I gave up when I got past #100

    but if you search for
    "Ascension Island Diary"
    my diary is there at #5
    but with no mention of this thread in the results.

    Any ideas why the results for unquoted and quoted search should be so very different.

    Ascension Island is not exactly the most popular topic on the web and is not a search topic one would have thought was subject to any anti spam algorithm.

    Of course now I have moved the ball game by mentioning A*** I*** V*** string several times and will give Google most text assuming it re-crawls this thread.

    Les

  14. #14
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by websmith
    Any ideas why the results for unquoted and quoted search should be so very different.
    Since mid-December of 04 google seemed to switch to an algorithm that places far less importance on text for unquoted searches. More importance seemed to be placed on backlinks, how long the site has been up, and other factors.

    I have a key phrase that relates to one of my sites I started in Jan that is at the #1 spot with quotes but at #24 without quotes. Back a month or so the same phrase ranked around #200 without quotes but in the top 5 with quotes. Also of note is that there are completely unrelated spam results in the quoted search at the bottom of the heap. Spammers traditionally used text in the title and body repeated 3 or more times to get rankings in both quoted and unquoted (for totally unrelated content) and google decided to stop the unquoted spam results. It makes it hard to get good rankings if your site is new and one could argue that even though the new unquoted results have related sites listed near the top without the completely unrelated spam, some very relavent results end up out of reach.

    Stick with it, add more related content, and get related backlinks. Once you do get to the top of the google heap, you will probably experience even more traffic than before they made their big change.
    This World is Not My Home
    We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. . . And then we're gonna go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline! Quotes from the movie Rudy, 1993

  15. #15
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    If you backlink it, they will come later, but it'll cost you some time.
    If you PPC it, they will come now, but it'll cost you some money.~Donuts
    For a term with such low search volume (presumably), I'd probably just PPC it and save the real SEO for the kinds of terms where PPC costs a lot more.

    While leader will go on against content sites, I will just say - while she excels at sales sites, maybe she just doesn't get how to make content sites work? Not a knock, but not everything works for everyone the same way. ~Chetf
    As long as sales sites work great, content still isn't *king* even if some can make good money with it. "Content is king" means that all other ways (like pure sales sites for instance) are inferior...which they're not! So I still say, content isn't "king" of anything.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  16. #16
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    Hi Websmith. My first father-in-law (deceased) was stationed on Ascension Island during WW2.

    I was thinking that for links in you could submit your site to some of the WW2 Veterans pages. There should be plenty of them out there.

    Also try the official Island site - they have a links page.

    On the Diary links - instead of just a date - how about a short description on what to expect on that page with a keyword link.

    Just a thought..
    Ebudae


  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ebudae
    Hi Websmith. My first father-in-law (deceased) was stationed on Ascension Island during WW2.

    I was thinking that for links in you could submit your site to some of the WW2 Veterans pages. There should be plenty of them out there.

    Also try the official Island site - they have a links page.

    On the Diary links - instead of just a date - how about a short description on what to expect on that page with a keyword link.

    Just a thought..

    Thanks for the suggestions.

    In fact one of the first emails I had after my original AI site went up after our 97' visit was from a war veteran who had been stationed there during WWII.

    When I get time I will re-read the diary and split up entry up with sub-headings as it maybe improve the SEO but it will definitely make the longer pages easier to read.

    The official island site already has a link to my AI main site, so I won't be cheeky and ask for another.

    Les

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