Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Keeping SEO Business Alive!

This is why SEO companies stay in business :)

"A typical algorithmic change begins as an idea from one of our engineers. We then implement that idea on a test version of Google and generate before and after results pages. "

"We take a data-driven approach and employ analysts, researchers and statisticians to evaluate search quality on a full-time basis. Changes to our algorithms undergo extensive quality evaluation before being released."

search testing

Amazing Explanation page on how search works -

Monday, February 25, 2013

Duplicate Content with Google Web Master Tools

Do you ever get smashed in the face with SERPs rapidly dropping? Your index seemingly to infinitely grow? How about the lack of PR behind your website? Well if this is the case, then you probably have duplicate content issues.
duplicate titles

Things to watch for:

GET parameters in the ULR

  • session ids
  • filters
  • form fills
  • eCommerce properties
These all will create a URL with extra data that makes Google think that there are multiple unique page URLs with the same content which means duplicate content. GROSS. So make sure you take your time and resolve this issue using canonical URLS.

<link rel="canonical" href=""/>

Other solutions?

301 Redirects
URL rewriting
Meta Tags Robots.txt
Google Web Master Tools preferred Domain
Language Targeting

It’s possible that the US version will outperform the Canadian version (even on because it has more authority.
There’s a simple solution: the rel=”alternate” hreflang=”x” annotation.
If we use our previous example, we need to add the following code in the <head> section of the .us domain:
<link rel="alternate" hreflang="en-CA" href="" />
On the .ca domain we need to place this code:
<link rel="alternate" hreflang="en-US" href="" />
In essence you’re telling Google that there’s an alternative version (or duplicate) in another language. 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Google Analytics Update

Is anyone else having trouble verifying their newly setup accounts today?

Change History for Google Analytics

I love seeing new features in products I already have, especially free ones. I am in Google Analytics several times each day whether its for reporting or for gathering data for analysis, I like to stay on top of our information because we make changes daily to our website. I like to engage and watch how it impacts SEO and PPC. It effects our budget and how we proceed daily, weekly, and in the long term.

There is a new Change History tab at the account level, alongside the Data Sources and Account Settings tabs.
The Change History lists:
  • Date column: The date and time of the activity
  • Email column: Which Analytics user performed the activity
  • Activity column: The Analytics object (e.g., account, user, profile, goal, filter), and what activity was performed on the object (e.g., added to account, created, deleted)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

CSS Firefox and IE Issues

So what the french toast. When did Firefox demand that padding errors need to be explicitly stated? I don't understand the thinking behind this. Maybe I am forgetting the past, but does ever child element need to have an explicit statement saying padding:0; ? It seems extremely redundant - but that's what I had to do today. Now I was working with un-ordered lists and no I don't feel like testing this on divs, but i found it very strange that I had to explicitly state that padding must be 0 in ordered to get elements to line up. Now if this was just IE I'd get it, but Firefox 19.0.0 was punishing my ever move.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Twitter Fact

Nice little Twitter Fact I found today:

  • Study shows that URLs receive a significant boost in Google rankings when they are shared on Twitter
  • The effects of this boost seem to level out at around 50 tweets, and the subsequent benefit of gaining additional tweets is minimal until around 5,000 tweets
  • After 5,000 tweets the average ranking of URLs improves considerably
  • URLs receiving over 7,500 tweets almost always rank inside the top 5 results
  • Average rankings are heavily correlated to the number of tweets about each URL

So social media does tie in closely with organic rankings - just like we would assume. It only makes sense that universal popularity is held in high regard. This doesn't mean go out and spam your link, but it does mean make sure you promote important links and promote others links. When you take effort and help others, there is a great chance they will help you in return. This is where you form relationships. Don't be selfish or a self promoter. (: :)

I would highly suggest finding as much data as possible and convincing your bosses to allow you to start even a small unadvertised twitter. Just start interacting with people in your industry and potential clients. You will be surprised that traffic will start flowing into your website and your rankings just might increase.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Jenkins for Cron Jobs

I learned  to use an interesting web application today. It's name? Jenkins. It's purpose? To manage Cron Jobs.

The interface itself isn't gorgeous, but it is at least circa 2004. (Nothing like Moxie's Live Chat 1991 interface.)  Jenkins is a play off of Confluence.
Confluence combines powerful online authoring capabilities, deep Office integration and an extensive plugin catalogue to help people work better together and share information effortlessly.
Half of the team working on our projects utilizes Jira, Confluence, and Jenkins while the other half uses Trello and Jenkins. I personally love Trello - it's simplistic in every aspect and provides a high level easy to use interface for developers and project managers alike.

If you are new to Cron Jobs Jenkins would make it easy to understand and learn how to use it. If you are not new to Cron jobs, Jenkins could help you expand the complexity of your work by providing tools, scheduling, and tracking options not available on all systems.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Games -

A quick one right here - just launched some of the games that I have made from high school, university course work or fun.

Enjoy -

Friday, February 15, 2013

Google Experiments with Analytics and Experiments

Yes the title is Lolzy.

Has anyone experimented with the newest feature in Google Analytics? I am curious how well it works for businesses because right now I created a script in php using a regex to detect what page was showed last and update a txt file then push the user to the correct page. It is done without even a .01 delay, but I can see the benefit of using something pre-built in to your analytics software of choice.
Content Experiments is a somewhat different approach from either standard A/B or multivariate testing. Content Experiments is more A/B/N. You're not testing just two versions of a page as in A/B testing, and you're not testing various combinations of components on a single page as in multivariate testing. Instead, you are testing up to five full versions of a single page, each delivered to visitors from a separate URL.

How does this compare to Optimizely?

These are questions I hope I can answer in a few weeks. For now I must get back to doing metal research and creating content a metallurgist would be proud of. At least it makes me more well rounded - I don't find it nearly as cut and dry either :)

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Recent Updates

I am killing it here - I've got a new design in the works with RA and I am developing it fully responsive so we can scale with device. What does this mean? It means more work upfront, for a much larger pay off. We will also be making the new my account section fully responsive so anyone on their mobile device can login, create a quote, or run a report.

I plan on continuing the cutup today with only a small section of the footer left for abuse.

Happy Valentines Day!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

SEO Bonus

I definitely confirmed my suspicion on SEO ranking improvement techniques.

Last week we were ranked for these two keywords: UNS K93603 and UNS K93600 on the 3rd and 4th page respectively. This week we are ranked 5th and 8th on the first page. We definitely are doing all of the correct things on-site, but we had no off-site power behind us. I did a little magic - and poof - we are now ranking well. If only there was a way to approach the people that mattered with this's too bad it's viewed as a secondary item except when our competition is stealing away business.

While you might have a perfect 10/10 on-site, you need a supporting offsite campaign. You need back links, you need interaction socially, you need content about your product on other sites.

Inbound marketing is extremely important, it is valuable for the time and effort you put in. It will pay dividends for years to come. If you aren't doing inbound marketing - you definitely need to start.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Weekend Exhaustion

I am tired - wow - alright.

The weekend was great seeing family, it was just ravaging to the body to drive so much. I am definitely glad we did it.

I am sorry for the brief post on Friday about the university course work I am putting up. I copied an old WP installation I had with all the data and got rid of the crap inside of it and just kept the course work. Hopefully the information there is good now.

I will add a lot more as we go, but as long as the link exists in the public domain I am happy.

I should probably add a sidebar for the links I post. All in due time, but for now - enjoy Monday.

Friday, February 8, 2013

University Blog

Hey if you are looking for the University Course work I did....

Oh I know its ugly, but its at least live on the web.

SEO and Social Media Competition

I often start my dad with light reading from Hubspot. I love their whitepapers and frankly I am a little behind on my knowledge. I did great for the first 5 months of being here and keeping on top of the outside world, but lately I have been slipping with so much occurring in my life. This morning the whitepaper was about SEO vs Social Media in a time competition.
Time and again, social media and SEO take the inbound marketing cake. But for marketers with limited time and money, SEO and social media often become competing priorities. I mean,  it’s not like you necessarily have all the resources in the world to throw your full weight behind SEO and social media. And the thing is, it’s usually better to do one thing well than two things, well, not well.
In my case I know that at Rolled Alloys we will perform SEO far more often than social media. The metal industry can be a little, dated.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

My Quandry

I can't decide what I want this site to be.  I don't know if personal reflections are going to be preferable and if I should leave my code snippets, free files, and other thoughts elsewhere since creating a menu navigation based upon labels is out of the blogger realm.

I think I will start off with something simple.

I'm going to use this as a repository for things that I learn throughout the course of a day or several days. This will most likely be Velocity / dotCMS findings and then of course normal web solution architect chores like SEO / PPC, HTML, CSS, UI and UX.

So without further adieu...

Does anyone have trouble with their Galaxy S3? I sure do - I can't text worth a crap on it. I don't know why, initially everything was fine, but as I got more acquainted with it, I tried to type faster. No dice. I don't know if its the processor, the ram, the background applications, or my big fingers, but something is causing this normally wonderful device to make me look like a fool.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Beta Test for Blogger

So this is really a beta test to see how well blogger performs in a real world business environment compared to a self hosted installation of WordPress or other blogging script that allows you to manage your content easily.

I don't think an introduction is in order - you can view my "marketing site" for that.

So without wasting more precious pixels, I will be posting my thoughts and things I learn in and out of the workplace.