SEO Blog By Niche SEO Blog By Niche Mon, 24 Aug 2009 16:06:16 +0000 en Matt Cutts On SEO Basics Mon, 24 Aug 2009 16:06:16 +0000 admin Recently, Google employee Matt Cutts was at a seminar explaining some of the basic concepts behind creating search engine friendly websites and blog posts. For those in the know, much of this will be already known. However, this recent video is one of the best the Matt has posted for some time. It clearly explains concepts such as back-links and PageRank, as well as debunking myths about keyword density.

All in all, this post serves as a very good guide for those who have only a basic understanding of he key concepts of search engine optimisation and the principles of Google. Furthermore, it is entertaining from start to finish. I highly recommend this video for any bloggers or anyone who is interested in SEO or Google’s practices.

Common SEO Mistakes Mon, 17 Aug 2009 14:37:18 +0000 admin Search engine optimisation is partly about knowing what to do and also knowing what not to do. Although many people understand the basic principles behind SEO, such as link building; targeted meta tags and so on, they often overlook the pitfalls.

There are a lot of SEO mistakes that I see repeated over and over again. However, the most common is probably the inclusion of “index” when linking to the website homepage from the sub-pages. When linking to your home page, it is best to include nothing more than the domain name (eg. “” and not “”).

If you link to, or any other file extension, it is possible that the search engines will see this as a separate page from This can cause duplicate content issues and will also split the link-score of the index page, reducing your potential search engine rankings and traffic.

Google and other search engines are fairly good at spotting that these pages are in fact the same page, but they do sometimes get it wrong. If the content has changed between robot visits, for example, it is much more likely that Google will treat them as different pages. If the PageRanks of and are different, it is a clear indication that you have a problem. However, they may have the same PageRank even if they are considered to be different pages. A more accurate way to test would be to look at the cache date of the pages. This can be done by typing “cache:” and the page URL into google (eg. “” and “”). If the cache dates are different, there is a problem.

This is a very common SEO mistake but can be easily avoided by using correct linking structure on your site. However, you may also consider including a 301 redirect in your .htaccess file to completely safeguard yourself from this kind of problem.

Google Caffeine Thu, 13 Aug 2009 16:22:48 +0000 admin Google are currently working on some big changes to their search infrastructure, which they have branded the “caffeine update”. Google makes small changes to infrastructure and algorythms on a regular basis and many of them go unreported and unnoticed. What is different about Caffeine however, is the sheer size of the update and the publicity that it has received.

Matt cutts has stated that the Caffeine update consists of changes that are largely “under the hood”; affecting the way Google indexes websites. The aim is to make a more powerful, flexible and robust infrastructure. However, with so many changes taking place, there are bound to be some knock-on effects, which affect websites’ positions in the results pages.

Google are being very open about these changes and have even published a preview of Google Caffeine at . Unfortunately, there is currently no UK version, so comparing these results to could give some very misleading data.

Twitter Hacker Attack Fri, 07 Aug 2009 14:57:31 +0000 admin Yesterday, the popular social networking site, Twitter was temporarily offline as a result of a malicious attack from hackers. Apparently, the downtime was the result of a “denial of service” attack. These are generally the result of a virus that spreads to thousands of computers before simultaneously attempting to log-in to a site via the infected computers. So many simultaneous log-in attempts cause the website servers to be overwhelmed and crash, bringing the site offline.

What is worrying about denial of service attacks is the ease by which they can be created. As far as computer viruses go, they are fairly simple, yet they are powerful enough to bring down big sites such as Twitter. In theory, a denial of service attack could be carried out without even using a virus. It is possible to carry them out with a large group of people and some good timing - in much the same way as flash mobs are created.

Over the past year, there has been a huge rise in malicious attacks towards social networking sites, especially towards FaceBook. Unfortunately, such attacks are inevitable for sites with such high profiles. One good side effect to these attacks is that they often expose weaknesses that are later patched, making the sites much more resilient in the long run.

Twitter for business Fri, 31 Jul 2009 08:34:12 +0000 admin Twitter has been around since 2006, but has only really shot into mainstream use in 2008-9. It allows companies and individuals to update their followers with thoughts, what they are doing, what has their attention or any little tit-bit of information they choose to share. These short (140 character) posts known as ?Tweets? can be accessed on line or on your mobile phone.

So other than being updated on what your best friend had for breakfast or that their job interview went well, how can this new form of communication be used to benefit your business?

Business wise, Twitter is mostly used for professional networking or sharing promotional offers with your customers or following. Here?s a few ways you might use Twitter for business:

? Gain quick answers to questions you may have or answering other people questions to increase the credibility of your company.
? Build up contacts in your industry / networking.
? Create links to your website or blog (these links have no search engine benefit, so there is no benefit is overdoing this).
? Promote special offers or events.

Of course these will only work if you have followers, and the more you have, the more networking or promotional opportunities you have. So how do you go about acquiring followers?

? Follow others and they?re likely to follow you back.
? Post useful and informative tweets that might be of interest to your target audience.
? Complete your bio. People don?t like to follow strangers. A short summary about who you are and a link to a website helps ?tweeple? feel they know you.
? If you have followers on a blog, Facebook or any other networking media, add your twitter feed to encourage your audience following your on twitter.
? Reply to tweets put out by people you are following, especially if they are not following you yet.

Many of the top twitter accounts currently consist of celebrities and big brands such as Google, however, there are some examples of smaller businesses commanding a high volume of followers (mostly in the US at the moment), such as @wholefoods, a food store based in Texas with over 1 million followers. Whole foods use their account to share special offers, customer support and company news with their customers and this activity has led to over 600,000 new followers in the last four months.

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