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SEO Questions & Answers

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Frequently Asked SEO Questions

If you can't find the answer here, then please give me a call. I will do my utmost to clarify and answer any SEO queries you have.

What are SERPs?

SERPs are the listing of web pages returned by a search engine in response to a keyword/phrase query that you enter into a search engine.

Results nearly always include a list of website pages with relevant titles, a link to the web page, and a short description (meta-description) showing where the keywords have matched content within the page. These titles and descriptions are pulled from the website being listed.

Why do I see different SERPs when searching more than once?

Data centres or servers are in abundance across the globe, they spend all day going around indexing pages. Each server will have similar but not the exact same results. So, whenever you conduct a search on Google, Google will go to the quickest route to get your query answered. This could mean using a server in another country if it means getting the result fastest. If the closest server will get results in say 0.5 seconds, but a server further away may be able to deliver results in say 0.3 seconds, it will show results from the quickest server. So, a leading factor is the amount of work load a server has.

Also, if your website is not mobile friendly it might show up on a desktop pc but not on a mobile device. Remember to ensure – Mobile First for search.

What is PageRank?

PageRank operates on a scale of 1 to 10 and is the measure of importance Google assigns to a Web page.

Google’s founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, formulated a Search Engine algorithm that shifted the ranking weight to off-page factors such as inbound links. They developed a formula called PageRank, in which the algorithm counts the number of sites that link to a page and then assigns the page an importance score on a scale of 1-10. The higher the number and importance of sites that link to your page, the higher the PageRank of your webpage.

Today PageRank is still a part of the Google algorithm, although the public score no longer exists.

My site has fallen a few places, what’s going on?
This could be down to a number of things, you could be just viewing a different set of results. Google has many data centres and they are not all in sync. It could be your competitors have a larger marketing budget and are having more SEO work than yourself. The SERPS are similar to the stock market; you don’t know if your website will go up or down, and it’s all perfectly natural.
Why are blogs so great for SEO?
Having a blog on your website can give a great boost to your SEO efforts because they give a platform upon which to offer fresh and unique content. Search engines love new content that is unique, insightful, and useful to its intended audience. If you have a blog on your website and populate it often with unique and useful content, the search engines will come along and index it regularly.
Can search engines index dynamic urls?
Dynamic URLs are less of a problem to search engine these days if the pages themselves are optimised well. Search engine friendly URLs do look nicer and offer the search engine’s a clue to what the page is about, however if the CMS (content management system) does not put more than 3 parameters in you shouldn’t have any problems.
How long does it take for SEO results to kick in?

It is impossible to be wholly accurate due to the many out of our control external factors, such as competitor budgets and Google updates. Analysis will give a good indication in formulating an answer, but the main factors are that of budget, niche, and current website state.

If these last factors equate to your website meeting its objective, you can usually start to see positive movements within a few months. Consistency is often key and positive keyword movements usually have a positive ripple effect too. A 12 month contract gives a good amount of time for an SEO strategy to be implemented, realistic results will be introduced at the beginning of the campaign.

What do you mean by SEO campaign

This encompasses the entire SEO project, from initial analysis to report on the impact. A top-line and regular approach looks like this:

1 – Analysis

I will need to do a complete review of your website and any competitors’ websites. Looking at your competitors will give me a good indication of your chances of search success.

2 – Keyword Research

Selecting the right keywords is one of the most important part of your optimisation campaign. If your keywords are very competitive I will have to research and develop a list of attainable keywords or phrases.

3 – Re-design or Improvements

Sometimes a re-design will be necessary. Flash websites look pretty but search engines cannot read flash. Other sites might just need tweaking here and there to make it more search friendly. Each page will need to be optimised for each keyword or phrase. Unique meta tags will be added to each page.

4 – On-site SEO

On-site SEO involves improving your website and changing titles headings and even renaming images so the website really screams what its about. Images are great, but search engines are text analysis systems so unless an image is named correctly then it may as well not be there.

5 – Ongoing Campaign Work

Writing and adding unique content for website but also for guest posting.

6 – Link Building

Link building is an essential part of any Search Engine Optimisation Campaign. Some of the best bought links cost from £10 – £200. I will be able to give you a list of the best directories your site should be listed in and costs. I will also source free links.

7 – Blog & Link Bait

Offering content to strong blogs is one tactice. Websites selling products can give products away for free reviews to authoritative bloggers and you-tubers.

8 – Reports

On request you can receive a monthly or quarterly report showing the progress of your search engine optimisation campaign. This will include all the chosen keyword/phrases ranking position on the 3 main search engines. The amount of pages indexed, the amount of external links, postings in blogs and bookmarking sites, and also all work carried out and how many pages are indexed.

Search Engine Friendly Web Design.

Most web design companies do not build websites for search engines, they build sites that look good and please you the customer.

Many people make the mistake of paying a web design company hundreds of pounds to build a great snazzy website. Then they ask the question “why isn’t my site coming up in the search engines “?

For a website to do well, first and foremost you must be able to find the site. Building a professional looking website to be search engine friendly needs a different set of skills than the average web designer. Search engines love websites that evolve and grow.

To be found and for it to perform well, the site must download fast on any browser or platform. Then the site must look professional with clear and easy navigation so visitors can find what they are looking for. Then obviously good products and services. (That is your bit, we cannot sell your products for you, but we can help people find them) With all the above you will get visitors and entice them to come back again and again.

May I have a list of current and past clients?

A long with the case studies on the home page, I have worked with several other companies and individuals. Just drop me an email and I will be willing to share more detail of the work I have performed with other companies and website owners.

How will you improve my search engine rankings?

I start at the foundation of your website, something we term a technical audit which will assess this area and I shall report back with the completed document. I will then assess all on-page factors, complete a competitor analysis, then formulate a campaign plan.

All these documents will be shared with you. Once the campaign plan is signed-off I get to work with implementing fixes and areas of enhancement. At the start of the SEO campaign, I will share with you a timeline document that further details any errors, along with time to fix or remediate the issue.

Depending on the niche, I shall formulate a competitor analysis document with a view to creating our own strategy that will result in outperforming the competition. This usually encompasses elements of outreach or digital PR work.

Do you adhere to search engines' webmaster guidelines, or white hat techniques?

This is our approach to all aspects of SEO. We ensure the future proofing of your website from updates whilst ensuring best practise tactics are applied that get positive results.

Are you experienced at improving local search results?

I have worked on several local SEO projects achieving top 3 positions in Google for all websites. Again, following best practise guidelines and actively pushing recommendations and enhancements has achieved these results for many bricks and mortar businesses I have worked with.

Will you share with me all changes you make to my site?

Yes. All recommendations, fixes and enhancements will be listed in the campaign plan. As these actions are put into place, I detail each element and will share these documents with you, along with discussing any major changes, whether it be to the backend server or code changes.

How do you measure the success of your SEO campaigns?

Mostly through measuring traffic and conversion factors, and monitoring this as the SEO campaign progresses. The ultimate achievement is to continually improve this.

I shall I also report on other areas of improvement to the website, such increasing the number of links, positive keyword movements and snippet success.

A lot of this will come down to what you want to see too. Along with the traffic and conversion detail, I can report on particular areas of the website you may be interested in understanding more about.

How will we communicate and how often?

You can call anytime, I usually report back each month, but this is dependent on the size of the project and any particular element of the campaign we may be performing at that time.

What are your fees and payment terms?

As a freelancer, who specialises in aiding smaller businesses, I am a lot more reasonable than any agency. Having worked within agencies for several years I have seen the amount they take for what is sometimes a small number of hours each month.

I work to an hourly rate and have a monthly fee for local website SEO projects, and national websites too. Depending on the niche my fees have ranged from £450 to £1550 a month, depending on the project requirements.

The work I do is broken down for you each month, so you know exactly what you are getting each month. There are no extras to my fee, I calculate the work required over a 12-month period and calculate my monthly fee based on the amount of work required each month that ensures your websites meets its objective.

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