Links are like the currency of the internet.
Like a blog post? Link to it.
Like a product? Link to it.
Refer to a page on the internet for more information on any topic under the sun? Link to it.
Links from other sites to your website are great! They tell search engines that you are the trusted go-to for whatever it is they are linking to you for.
Internal links are really important too! An internal link is a link from one page on your website to another page on your website. Internal links can be found in your navigation and your sitemap but they should be in your website content too.
Internal links improve usability
As people come to your website and make their way around, internal links can help them with the flow of information. Many users even say they are more willing to click on links in your text versus a navigational item because there is a more natural transition to it.
Internal links for SEO
Search engines send little bots or spiders to regularly crawl your website. They determine what your site is about and if/when they should list it in their search results when someone searches for something. Internal links help search spiders figure out your website’s architecture. They tell the spiders the pathways on your site and which pages are most important. The most important pages will have the most links to them.
Important aspects of internal linking
When you are linking from one page of your site to another, you should make sure you have a few things:
- Make sure to add a link title that explains to the search engines where this link is going and what information they will find on that page.
- When you link a keyword to another page, make sure that keyword is on the next page that you are linking to.
- When adding internal links, make it look natural. Don’t link too much (see below).
- If you link to a page multiple times, mix up the anchor text or link title so you give the search engines an even better idea of what this page is about.
- Always add links and keywords to a site for users first and search engines second. Trust me – the happier the people, the happier the search engine.
Don’t over link
Search engines compare the amount of content on your site to the amount of links on your site. The less links on a page, the more value given to them. The more links on a page, the less value each link is given. Try not to have more than 100 links per page as a general rule.
Help out your website visitors and search engines by making sure you have a sound internal linking strategy in place!
Many businesses have a Facebook page that they use for marketing. Many times in the planning stages and sometimes after something unfortunate happens, businesses will need to decide their policy on bad Facebook comments.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of moderating a panel at the Maine Association of Nonprofits conference, Social Power: The Emergence of Social Media as a Force for Social Change. One of the panelists, Natural Resources Council of Maine, brought up a great point about bad Facebook comments. She said that leaving up bad comments and responding is actually your chance to set the record straight. I would have to totally agree!
Deleting a negative comment can actually anger the commenter more. Most times they just want an answer, help or more information.
Set some ground rules
- Talk to your team about what is acceptable, what is not and how you will handle an unfavorable comment. Of course any post that includes foul language, is threatening, malicious or spam may be removed. You can even create a page on your Facebook company profile explaining what will and what will not be tolerated.
- Figure out how you will deal with criticism. It is tempting to delete an unfavorable comment but don’t. Acknowledge the criticism and take this opportunity to educate, explain or set the record straight. Opening the dialogue may be more beneficial than you thought.
- Have a plan for if you do delete a comment. Consider grabbing a screen shot of the post before you delete it and save it somewhere. You never know if you may need that again.
It may be hard to stomach bad comments but take a deep breath, maybe a walk and respond accordingly. Like my panelist said yesterday, use this as an opprtunity to set the record straight or deflect to better news.
Photo credit: FindYourSearch
The world is moving fast, real fast and no one sees it slowing down anytime soon. Speed is the name of the game in business, technology and most aspects of our busy lives. How does your website hold up in a world where attention spans are shrinking on a daily basis?
The average search query is delivered in about a tenth of a second. The average website is loaded in almost five seconds! Sure five seconds is fast but it is exponentially more than a tenth of a second. Users expectations are increasing and your slow poke website could be hurting your business. Search engines are also punishing sites that load slower by not ranking them as high.
Check your page speed in Google Analytics
With the new version of Google Analytics there is a report for your website’s load time. Under the Content Reports there is a tab for Site Speed. There are two tabs within the Site Speed report: Overview and Page Timings. There you can see how fast your web pages load and how that speed effects your traffic flow.
Faster sites mean more engaged visitors
In this article from Google’s quarterly magazine they cite two case studies of businesses that found significant return in adjusting their page speed:
- Edmunds Inside Line, a car review site, reduced load times from nine seconds to 1.4 seconds. Ad revenue went up and pages per session increased.
- Shopzilla, a shopping deal site, reduced their load time from seven seconds to two. Their revenue went up 7 – 12% percent and page views increased by 25%
When your site loads faster, people click more, they buy more. They are more engaged.
How can you make your site faster?
There a bunch of ways that your site can be slowed down. I asked some of our developers for advice on lowering page load times.
RC said the two biggest culprits are:
- The number of images on your pages
- The size of your images and
- Not having clean and compressed code
For more technical tips and to test your site, Tim recommends Google’s PageSpeed.
Speeding up your website will help your business, your visitors and your site’s ranking. You should probably get started – quickly!