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Ziggy's Website

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by Phil A, Feb 21, 2011.

  1. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    A big thanks to Clueless1, who has been helping with advice about building my website up :dbgrtmb: Cheers Dave.

    I'm finally getting the hang of html codes, putting things in the website source codes & key words.

    But despite my best efforts i'm still only on page 17 of a google search. Wonder if you guys & gals all hit the link http://www.searchfieldhistoricbuildings.co.uk/ wether it would improve my rating, or am I barking up the wrong Quercus here ?

    Had an advert out in 5 different papers this week & still no response:DOH:Need the sun to come out & people to look at their buildings & think "Hmm, that needs doing, better get a man in"
     
  2. redstar

    redstar Total Gardener

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    Looks good Ziggy. But no expert on the subject. It works.
    Lots of historic places around there. Do you also keep a "grave yard" of historic pieces from fallen buildings? Must be interesting to work inside of them, so rich with personality. And maybe a ghost here and there.
     
  3. clueless1

    clueless1 member... yep, that's what I am:)

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    Ziggy, can you use 'Google Analytics' with your site (It seems to be a templated solution so you might not have access to put scripts in the headers). If you can then you can get a wealth of information from there. It basically tells you who is visting your site, where from, how they found it etc, all polished up into a nice easy to read graphical report.

    In any case, it takes a little while for google to reassess your site and reindex you.

    I'll have a look when I get home, and see if I can see anything that needs doing, but after a quick look just now, it looks good. Its come on a fair bit since the first time I looked:dbgrtmb:
     
  4. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    Hi Redstar,

    Cheers for that. I'm trying my best, building websites is all new to me.

    Did have a collection of bricks, masonry, plaster samples & stuff that we used to take round to trade fairs, but it all got skipped when the old company went bust :DOH:

    The building all have a different feel to them and, yes, some ghostly goings on. I was working 13 lifts of scaffold high on the Black Castle in Bristol, built in 1780 by slave labour.

    I knew I was the only one up there at the time, but kept getting the feeling there was someone else there:rolleyespink:[hr]
    Cheers Dave,

    I'll look into that one :dbgrtmb:

    Willow has been helping me too:D
     
  5. Kristen

    Kristen Under gardener

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    You didn't ask me? :( (but one less job to have to do today :) )

    We have people who do search-engine-optimisation for our clients, so its not my strong suit, but here's my 2penny-worth for what its worth (it won't be worth more than face value for sure!)

    Move all the inline <SCRIPT> stuff into a single INCLUDE file. That will reduce the amount of "volume" before the meat, and Google may give more weight to the article text (as it will appear higher up the page). (Your site isn't going to load slowly, its too small, so nothing to worry about on that score, but moving the SCRIPT stuff to an external file will mean it is cached, which will make a difference to load time after the first page view). [That might be part of the "Template" you are using though]

    I'd like to see the <Hn> tags being more structured. Currently the Banner and the Navigation use them - I think it would be better to only use them for Content (and to be religious about using <Hn> tags for section/paragraph headings within the article content).

    Replace all FONT tags with Style/Class - using P or DIV tags instead.

    "Samples of Work" page. Change the link so that an English Description is used within the <A> tag. Google will index that. So instead of:

    <a href="http://www.xxx.com/yyyzzz" rel="nofollow">http://www.xxx.com/yyyzzz</a>

    use

    <a href="http://www.xxx.com/yyyzzz" rel="nofollow">A really descriptive name</a>

    and I feel strongly that you do NOT want the rel="nofollow" in there - Google indexing the images on Photobucket makes sense to me - if there is any descriptive content in the linked Photobucket page Google will add that into your come-from page search "merit".

    But, for me, the real issue is that you don't have anything like enough pages. Your case studies are all on one page. Make each one a separate page. Get rid of the all-caps. Create an index page or put a section of

    <ul>
    <li><a href="LinkToPage1.htm">Article A</a></li>
    <li><a href="LinkToPage2.htm">Article B</a></li>
    ...
    </ul>

    cross reference list at the foot of every page (your left-pane menu will probably do the job just fine, if so don't do anything more than that)

    Is there a forum on Historic Buildings where people ask numpty question,. or requests for work, or "How do I repair THIS" questions? You know ... just like Gardens Corner does for gardeners ... ??

    If so register there, put a link to your Site in the SIG. Get active answering questions to build up some REPUTATION. Then, each time you answer a "generic" question in the forum write a new, fuller, article in your blog. You can cut & paste from your answer (its your copyright after all!) and imbellish, and link to other sites etc. to make an article out of it. Even if you don't embellish it much, as new ideas occur to you in the future you can go back an improve it. Google's algorithm is smart, and it behaves like humans do (clever that, eh?!). So if you have lots of articles, linking to lots of sites, and generally good material, your ranking will improve. Moreover if your site becomes THE reference that people turn to first, then those people will tell their mates and you will be a hub for people in your trade. Its very much "spend some to make some" I'm afraid. (Don;t expect overnight improvements, Google should index your new pages within hours / days (that's also impressive :) ) but adjustments to the "Page Ranking" only happens once every few months I think :(

    Separate from that you need INBOUND links. LOTs of them. But NOT from directory sites that just have lists and Lists and LISTS!! of links. You need to annoy everyone you know to put a link on their site to point to yours. The more you can get people with sites about YOUR subject matter to link to your site the better, but less-relevant sites are OK too (they just score a bit less in Google's eyes).

    But, sorry, its like gardening. Ask two people and you will get three opinions!
     
  6. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    Blimey,

    I didn't ask you Kristen as I didn't know you knew of such magic.:DOH: I've been struggling with Dave's input & will have to look at all that in the morning with a sober mind :dbgrtmb:

    I know my buildings but struggle a lot with the new tech stuff.
     
  7. Alice

    Alice Gardener

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    [size=medium]I'me sure you've had brilliant advice there Ziggy, but it's all gobbledegook to me.
    I've hit your link, just incase it helps in some small way.
    Hope it all picks up for you [/size]:thumbsup:
     
  8. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    Cheers Alice,

    Something is going on as i've moved up from page 17 to page 14 :dbgrtmb:

    Keep on clicking :thumbsup:
     
  9. Aesculus

    Aesculus Bureaucrat 34 (Admin)

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    easiest way to get up Google search listings is to do what your doing now =] the more mentions your websites has on other websites the further it will go up in Googles rankings
     
  10. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    Like this then. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7iD_qZ3hTDo

    :dbgrtmb: Cheers me old Chestnut :dbgrtmb:
     
  11. clueless1

    clueless1 member... yep, that's what I am:)

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    Ziggy, Kristens advice is bang on, but if you've used a site builder you might not have control over everything.

    A jump from page 17 to 14 is a very good sign. Once a site starts to float up, they generally keep floating as long as you keep changing stuff.

    Google tend to keep their ranking algorithms a closely guarded secret. There is a good reason for this, they want content to be relevant to the search and if they published their algorithms everybody would just milk it regardless of site content. However they do give tips, most of which tally with the established 'understandings'. One of the things google like to see is the site being maintained, so that abandoned sites don't get onto page one (although they sometimes do but that's another story). You have an opportunity to milk this fact.

    As your site is floating up now, now is the time to make some changes to keep the site fresh. Have a good think about what people will put into the search box when they want to find your site. Best ask people who know what you do without knowing the terminology because at the end of the day, most customers won't know the terminology either. An example might be 'historic building restoration'. Armed with a notepad and pen, note down all the search terms you and non-building friends come up with. Once you have that list of words and phrases, you need to find a way to wangle them into your site. If you can get the terms into headers (<h1> etc) or the description of links (<a href="blah">some keywords making a good title</a>), or page titles, then that's a distinct bonus.

    Your keywords are the single most important, yet easiest (in technical terms at least) things that are under your control as far as search engines are concerned.

    That said, make sure you don't complete ram pages full of keywords. Google marks you down if it thinks you're 'spamming' keywords. It has to make sense to humans, while containing plenty of your keywords.

    Have a look at Google Adwords. You can sign up for free and there is a tool in there that suggests extra search phrases based on what people have actually been searching for, so for example if you put the search phrase 'restore historic building', adwords might tell you that hardly anyone searches for that, but thousands search for a similar phrase like 'historic building restorations'.

    So just to reinterate, keywords and keyphrases are the key, and need to be in your pages. Just in the text if you like, but better still if you can get them into headers, links and page titles.

    On your images, never overlook the 'alt' attribute (<img src="yourpic.jpg" alt="A description of the image, another opportunity to wangle in some keywords" /> )

    Apart from keywords, the next big thing is to get other sites linking to yours if you can. You could start with the link you have in your signature here. Change the link text to contain not just your company name but also a couple of keywords, e.g. 'Searchfields Historic Building Restorations' or something. One of the tricks is to propose link swaps with other site owners. One very important point here though is that you only want relevant links. A few years ago entire websites went up dedicated to managing link swaps. They were horrendous and dragged good sites down because google decided they were link spamming. So the links need to be from genuine sites, and ideally, something relevant to what you do.

    Google also likes sites that comply with the W3C spec (just makes sure your html is error free really). Every time you upload any changes to your site, run it through a validator just to check you haven't forgot to close any tags etc. Here's one such validator:

    http://validator.w3.org/

    If it throws any errors up and you don't understand, give me a shout.
     
  12. Phil A

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    Nice one Dave :dbgrtmb:

    Will have to really have a good look at all this in the morning, cheers for all the advice. I owe you and the others quite a few vegetables now.
     
  13. clueless1

    clueless1 member... yep, that's what I am:)

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    Ziggy, I searched for your site on google and found another site that appears to be yours. When your mate did the original site do you reckon he might have had a second attempt and not told you?

    http://www.searchfieldhistoricbuildings.org.uk/
     
  14. Phil A

    Phil A Guest

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    Yep, couldn't get into that one to change any of the spelling mistakes :DOH:
     
  15. Kristen

    Kristen Under gardener

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    Although beware that links from forums usually contain rel="nofollow" which means that Google won't follow them (although amazingly on this site that isn't the case - I'm surprised that GC doesn't become a magnet for spammers because of that, but I see almost zero spam here :thumb: )

    Having said that, I have read that Google may still rank links which have rel="nofollow" - but its a black art, so best to devote energies where that isn't used given a choice ...
     
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