Weekly SEO news: 9 August 2011

Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

Optimizing the content of your web pages is important if you want to get high rankings on Google. Most people know that they have to work on web page titles, web page content and links from other sites. The internal link structure of a website is often overlooked although it has a big impact on the rankings of a website.

Also in the news: a Google patent might reveal further information about Google Panda, for some searches, Google finds ads more valuable than organic results, your ISP might hijack your search queries and more.

Table of contents:

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Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Optimize your internal links to get higher search engine rankings

Optimizing the content of your web pages is important if you want to get high rankings on Google. Most people know that they have to work on web page titles, web page content and links from other sites.

The internal link structure of a website is often overlooked although it has a big impact on the rankings of a website.

Why the internal link structure of your website is important

Internal links do not count as much as links from external websites. Nevertheless, search engines use them as an important signal in their algorithms.

Search engines consider links as votes. By optimizing the link structure on your web pages, you can lead search engines to the important pages of your website and you can show them the keywords for which you want to get high rankings.

1. Start by optimizing the main navigation on your website

The main navigation on your website are the navigational links that are visible on all pages of your site. The main navigation is the most important part of your website navigation.

It usually includes a "Home" link (including a linked company logo image) and links to the main sections on your website.

  • Make sure that the links in your main navigation contain your most important keywords.
  • Avoid Flash and JavaScript menus. Most search engines won't index your pages then. Use standard HTML and CSS to design your website navigation.

2. Consider breadcrumb navigation for sub-pages

Sub-pages can benefit a lot from breadcrumb navigation (Home > Category > Sub category > Product page). Sub pages usually aren't linked form the main website navigation.

Breadcrumb navigation links can help search engines to put the sub pages into the right context:

  • Use breadcrumb navigation links on your web pages to show search engines and website visitors the exact location of a page.
  • Use descriptive and keyword rich words in your breadcrumb navigation: Shoe shop > Sports shoes > Buy soccer shoes > Adidas deals

3. Make sure that the first link on the page is the right link

Google seems to consider only the text of the first link on a page. For example, if page A links to page B with the anchor text "further information" on the top of the page and with the anchor text "buy adidas soccer shoes" at the bottom of the page then only the first anchor text will be used by Google.

  • If you link more than once to another page, make sure that the first link on the page contains the keywords for which you want to get high rankings.

linking pages

Optimizing the internal link structure of your website can have a major impact of the search engine positions of your web pages.

If you want to get your website on Google's first result page for keywords that deliver paying customers to your website, analyze your pages with IBP's Top 10 Optimizer. IBP's Top 10 Optimizer will show you how to change your pages so that they get the best possible rankings on Google and other search engines.

 

2. Search engine news and articles of the week

Discussion: Google Panda

"Have we seen a roll back yet? Is Panda update done? Is it time to dump the sites and just let them flow on the net and make new once? [...]

Pandalised pages tend to be witty, irreverent and off-beat sales pitches, where as unpandalised pages are generally the ones where we were lacking inspiration or inclination and just said wrote something plain, descriptive and unadventurous about the product. Structurally, everything else is the same."



LocalLocal AdWords ads dominate the hotel SERPS – the new normal? Or a test?

"It is not clear if this is the new normal or a test but on this search for bed and breakfast St. Augustine and every hotel search, Adwords with Location Extensions and Adwords Express are now showing as interactive local content on hotel searches. No non local ads need apply. [...]

Must be that Google doesn’t think organic results can be as useful to searchers as ads."



How Google may fight malware using document classification

"The paper was originally published in 2009 and the patent was filed in 2008, and we’ve been told by Google’s Matt Cutts and Amit Singhal that this was roughly the same time period that work on the document classification system behind Panda started.

There has been a lot of speculation and guesses about what types of features might be involved the classification of pages for quality in Google’s Panda, including things like numbers and sizes and locations of advertisements and a ratio of advertisements to content, reading levels and originality of content, and many others."



TrafficDiscussion: does more content mean more search traffic?

"Having more pages that are optimized for different keywords gives you increased opportunity for traffic. It doesn't necessarily mean more traffic, though, since it depends on how popular and how competitive those new keywords are. [...]

The pages have to create unique enough value that they can be distinguished from other similar pages by the search engines. Lacking that intrinsic value, they will have to be distinguished by inbound linkage."



US internet providers hijacking users' search queries

"Searches made by millions of internet users are being hijacked and redirected by some internet service providers in the US. [...] More than 10 ISPs in the US, which together have several million subscribers, are redirecting queries in this way. [...]

The Berkeley team has identified 165 search terms, from 'apple' and 'dell' to 'safeway' and 'bloomingdales', that are passed to marketing companies and then redirected to the appropriate retail website."



Search engine newslets

  • How Google may transform your search into multiple related searches (without your knowledge).
  • Google tests listing numbers in search result snippets.
  • Google has updated the toolbar PageRank once more.
  • Google's site: search operator doesn't show the index page for some sites.
  • Google Chrome becomes UK's second most popular web browser.
  • Nine Google complainants in EU probe.

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