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Driving traffic to my site


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#1
ScHwErV

ScHwErV

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In recent months, I have been working hard to drive users to my site.

http://www.eoutdoorsman.com

I have added a blog to add content, I have started threads in my forum, and I have spruced the place up a bit with some lighter colors and much better images than what I started with.

All the softwares that I use are fully up-to-date to take advantage of any optimizations the software makers have done and I have installed the Google Sitemap generator into my forum to make google like me more. I plan on installing the Google Sitemap generator for my blog as soon as I have time.

So, what else can I do to increase pagerank and search hits to my site?
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#2
Johanna

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Leatherworker.net is doing better than I expected. The search engines seem to love the site:
http://www.leatherwo...p...post&p=1665
The content and keywords help, but the most traffic comes from being linked on other leather-related sites. Have you thought about using a webring or contacting webmasters with related themes to initiate link exchanges?
Johanna
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#3
ScHwErV

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I cant find it right now, but I remember reading a list of top 10 things NOT to do if you want to increase traffic to your site. Be part of a web ring was like #5. I cant remember the exact wording, but this was the premise.

When you get users to your site, you want to keep them. To be part of a web ring, you need to provide links on your site to other sites that offer the same information that you do. In effect, you are providing links to your competition.

I have, in the past, consulted with other sites and vendors who share similar sites, but still different enough that we wouldn't be competing. One accepted (leatherworker.net), but the others declined. I plan to continue working on it.
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#4
admin

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Webring = not good. :whistling:

Links from related sites = good. :help:

Good, unique content updated often = very good. :blink:

Easier said than done
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#5
Michael

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Links from related sites = good. :whistling:


The question is how to do that with out a web ring?
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#6
ScHwErV

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I have tried to do it using the "personal contact" method. I contacted Johanna who owns Leatherworker.net and said, you do leather, I do outdoors, were similar, but different. Many of your leatherworkers are interested in the outdoors and many of my outdoorsmen are interested in leather or at least taxidermy. Lets hook up.

You'll find a banner for my site at the bottom of hers and you'll find a few different links on my site that point to hers.

I have contacted a few vendors who sell hunting and fishing related equipment. I told them that I would create them their own forum on my board in exchange for a link from their site to mine. I have had some interest, but so far, no luck. I am still working on it.
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#7
Dragon

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Links from related sites = good. :whistling:


The question is how to do that with out a web ring?

do a search for the type of service you offer on your site. for example, I do web design, so i have links going to some Web Design specific search engines in exchange for putting their link in my site. You can go to my website, it's in my sig, and click on hosting and web design, as well as homepage link and you will see my banners. I also have link exchanges with some graphic design sites and other siter in my forums.

So, what else can I do to increase pagerank and search hits to my site?


Don't use a Blog page as the homepage since you have forums also, Yes this adds content to your site when you make new entries, and someone makes comments. However, by using a blog, the keywords in the meta-tags won't match very often. For the type of site you are running a Portal with outdoor activity specific rss feeds, and other content is much better. You also want to use some static content that matches the keywords you are using in your meta-tags. Don't rely on keywords only though, a lot of search engines are phasing out the use of Keyword meta-tags for their search queries. Those that do rely on the Keyword meta-tag also check the content of the page that the tags are listed on for matches. This gives a stronger hit on their search algorithm. Keywords should not just be one word each, short phrases should be used also.

SEO is one of the hardest things to manage constantly, to really get a proper SEO system running I would recommend looking into SEO software. There are some good ones out there that aren't too expensive, these do a couple of different things.
  • help determine the most productive keywords
  • they submit your website to numerous search engines every month
it depends on whether you get a paid for version or if you use a free version as to how many search engines your SEO software submits to. At work the SEO software I have submits to 2000 Search Engines, here at home the SEO software i use only submits to 10 search engines. Thats what I get for using the trial version of an expensive program.

Also make sure your site is listed at http://www.DMOZ.org. This site feeds a lot of search engines, like yahoo, lycos, excite, dogpile, and even google, specifics about your site so that it can be indexed faster. If you are listed there, check by doing a search for your site, make sure you are in the correct category, if it is in the wrong category your listing won't be indexed correctly by the bigger search engines. If it isn't there at all then submit it to the correct category for the type of website you have.

Finally, in reference to the pagerank.

PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the web by using its vast link structure as an indicator of an individual page's value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. But, Google looks at more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves "important" weigh more heavily and help to make other pages "important."

Important, high-quality sites receive a higher PageRank, which Google remembers each time it conducts a search. Of course, important pages mean nothing to you if they don't match your query. So, Google combines PageRank with sophisticated text-matching techniques to find pages that are both important and relevant to your search. Google goes far beyond the number of times a term appears on a page and examines all aspects of the page's content (and the content of the pages linking to it) to determine if it's a good match for your query.

Emphasis mine The question to ask here is: "How does Google determine what is an 'important, high quality site'?"
<Begin rant>
I don't personally put too much stock in it, they have a tendency to not "notice" strong links to your site. Also forums hurt Pagerank, because it is hard to create links to similar content without direct competition or creating a mirror of another site.

Prime example of why I don't put faith in pagerank is as follows:

When I do a link:www.iabusinessprojects.com at the "big 3" I get the following results:
  • Google -- 4 links to my site. Only one of them is related to what my business does.
  • MSN -- 28 links to my site. 25%-30% of them are related to my business. I do a Link exchange with most of them, in some form or another.
  • Yahoo -- 297 links going into my site.
So as you can see Google Pagerank is not that important, since it doesn't even see most of the links. Pagerank only effects your listing on Google, it does nothing to really effect the other search engines.
here are my sites search stats, with Googles Pagerank giving me a 2/10 status.
Posted Image
<end rant>

Edited by Dragon, 25 January 2007 - 02:10 PM.

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#8
Johanna

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I'm glad you started this thread, ScHwErV, because most of what I know about SEO has been accidental, trial and error or learning just like this from more experienced people. Leatherworker hit 500 registered members today. I have never submitted any site to anywhere but Google.

stats.JPG

I started with about 40 interested people, and "spread the word" through private emails and leather guild newsletters and lists in June 2006.

seo.JPG

My site has some major differences than eO. Leatherworker has distinct unique keywords. There's just not much on the net about the subject and the tools, aside from the reenactors and their primitive attempts at leatherwork. I've noticed youth leaders are always searching for leather crafts advice and projects, and again, there is very little available. "The Outdoors" is a much broader subject, and there is a wealth of information about each category. That has to affect page rankings. I haven't made any extra effort to link to individual sites, but some people have done it for me, and a few hits come from there. An afternoon of personal requests could probably mean 40 or better more cross-links. I'm not "competing" with these sites, though, and their visitor traffic is far less than even my own hodge-podge home page. The forum probably drives more traffic to their sites than the other way around.



I do belong to a webring that I used to "own". It has four of my leather related sites there, and nearly 100 more. People actually do browse this ring, and they will click on the forum, and the Leather Lady's links and spend hours there. As you can see, the couple of leather pages are the most popular on my potpourri website.

jnko.JPG Three quarters of that is search engine hits. Running a forum, I don't think a webring is going to drive traffic elsewhere. When I build stores for people, if they insist on listing their favorite webrings, I bury them on a "links" page, and don't make it very easy to find. I point the webring so that it shows we have the code, but I know the sites are not being driven by the webring, it's only a contribution. On Leatherworker, I will eventually have the other side of the site with people's profiles, artists, contact info, images and links (more keywords). Images are a help with the search engines, too, at least for leatherwork. Leatherworker's other biggest contributor for referrals is PSLAC, "The Rawhide Gazette" right above Oe's banner. PSLAC is an older established site, and Bob said he's getting similar referrals from Leatherworker. Again, neither of us are selling anything, so we're not driving traffic away- chances are they will bookmark both sites. Notice there are two entries for PSLAC on the list.



Then there are flukes. Look at the "Chatslang" page on JohannaNKO. When I type "web slang" into Google, it comes up #2. I took a list I had and uploaded it one night because I was bored. It's linked on "spraakservice.net" and other sites I never heard of. Same with "Characters"- it's a plain list I put up of the alt codes for characters. I have a section devoted to the Miami Erie Canal and the Great Black Swamp history and maps, but those pages are never found. They are found constantly on another site I have http://newbremenhistory.org Go figure. New Bremen's site is linked everywhere relevant, and 85% of the hits come from the search engines, and I have never submitted it anywhere other than Google. Type "leather guild" into Google and my site "Pitt Pounders" will come up first or second. The other guilds have had sites up for years. PSLAC isn't even on the first page, and the "mother guild" the IFoLG isn't always in the top five. Here's a vBulletin forum that's mine, with more than 10,000 posts, and you can't find it on a search engine if you stand on your head and whistle Dixie. PrisonSupport



So keep talking, guys, I need to learn. The stores I do are much harder to market. RLN Photography is technically sweet site, but again, it can't be found with Google, and needs special attention if it's ever going to be a viable store. I appreciate all the insight, tips and links. I would love to hear Blair's observations and experience- G2G exploded, and remains a growing site. What can that be attributed to? What helped, what was insignificant? Was the site driven by the malware references?

TIA

Johanna
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#9
coljung

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Thanks for all the info.

I've been reading as much as i can about SEO to try to improve my clients rankings. At this point, any information is very useful.
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