What I did: February 2013
Well, I definitely did something this month!
Also, having had a few requests this last month for a new giveaway, that’s exactly what I did; and you can find that at the bottom of this page.
As usual, I don’t need any conditions to be met, no email addresses to be given, no newsletters to subscribe to, no subscriptions or anything else for that matter.
Just follow the link and grab the downloads, which are ten great internet marketing products this month. As I always say; if you can take just one thing from the download and make it work for you then it’s been worthwhile.
Set up BrandYourself
The new platform for optimising your entries in the SERP’s without having to know that much about SEO.
WordPress keyboard shortcuts
Every second counts; especially if you’ve got arthritis or get RSI! These shortcuts will help.
Set up your Google+ page
This might seem a little late, but if you’re new to G+, it’s new news! I receive emails about this every single month.
How to earn money from a website
This post will answer many questions I receive on a daily basis.
The meta tag ‘keywords’ in 2013
No, there’s not much weight left in keywords, but there is some and while it’s there you may as well use it.
New FTC review and content regulations
See how the new regulations will affect you and your site.
New internet addresses coming
If you have a particular name or brand that is worth protecting, now is the time to prepare for the new domain extensions.
I signed up at BrandYourself. I didn’t really need the boost for this blog or my personal name. I’ve been around for quite a while now (and still here) and a search on my name already fills the first few pages of any search, but for other sites and projects I thought I’d try it out and tested it with my name.
I got an A- and here’s the link to my profile at brandyourself.com:
I posted a brief tutorial on how to set up your profile at BrandYourself and process your links which you can see here: Set up BrandYourself
Alternatively, there’s a Facebook Page called GoogleGrader which you can find here. Follow the links through and after scrolling down the page a little, type in your choice of name or brand and press search. If the results are going to take a while, it shows a short video which is well worth a watch.
When the results have come through, run through the list of ten and click the appropriate buttons and get your ‘current grade’. You can then continue to BrandYourself where you can run through the rest of the process as described in my brandyourself overview.
N.B. Don’t forget to run all names or brands applicable to you through the process. It’s no good putting just a business name up if it’s likely that someone will search on your personal name. That was easy for me as myself, as my name is my brand and both mingle together nicely.
Keywords in Analytics
There’s a post on keywords and their relevance in the search engines which you can read here: keywords and search engines and while I’m talking about keywords, I’ve noticed recently that when I log in to my Google analytics account, the keywords that people used to use to find danieldlaine.com is changing and the ones that used to be commonly used are now diminishing and ‘not provided’ is showing up much more, especially over the last month or so.
Privacy settings and protected browsing on the internet accounts for the ‘not provided’ listing showing up more regularly but how and why did this all happen?
The internet changes on a daily basis and I forecast that it will be a totally different animal in just ten years time – just like most things in life.
Protected browsing is becoming much more common and I think it will become the industry standard in a few years time. This is good for surfers (mostly) but not so good for webmasters. Anyone who has anything to do with advertising or promotion on the internet (bloggers, SEO companies, publishers, niche site owners etc.) will now find it more difficult to gain information about the keywords visitors to their sites used, in order to chose the site.
This had been on the cards for a couple of years or so but came into common practical existence late 2011 when Google began holding back certain information. Before Google made these changes it was possible to view all search terms typed by visitors but this was partly possible due to the early browsers being used which allowed this to happen. These old browsers used searches as ‘referrers’ so there was an open record of the information.
In 2011, Google started blocking users’ search data ‘if’ they were logged into their Google account in order to safeguard privacy. You can read the Google help page about SSL searching here.
This presence of ‘not provided’ shows no sign of easing up and browsers and mobile devices are all moving towards secure searching.
Many major sites have started serving their content over SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) by default and this started as early as 2010 (Gmail). Others that followed the trend include Twitter in February 2012 and Facebook in November 2012.
Google introduced ‘Encrypted Search’ in May 2010 and made encryption the default for signed-in users starting in October 2011.
Firefox announced a switch to SSL for all Google searches in July 2012 and Safari did the same thing in September 2012. Google are now continuing this trend with Chrome and last week (January 2013) announced that the new Chrome browser will provide an ‘entirely secure’ search experience.
So how can I get keyword statistics now?
There are a few things you can do. You could use the Google analytics ‘internal site search’ feature. People who search your website are effectively telling you what content they want to find on your site. This is a great way to find out what people are looking for!
Another option is signing up for AdWords. (Google doesn’t apply the protected browsing restrictions to its Adwords customers).
A WORD ABOUT KEYWORDS
Is the keywords meta tag still used in 2013?
Yes it is… but not by all search engines.
The keywords attribute was made popular in the early nineties by search engines such as Infoseek and AltaVista (Great times) and quickly became one of the most commonly used
meta elements in website design.
Towards the end of 1997 it was quickly realised by search engine programmers that keywords placed in this tag could be used to attract unsuspecting visitors to spammy sites full of junk and sales crap.
A year or so later, search engines began dropping support for data provided by the ‘
meta’ element and by 1999/2000 many search engines had greatly reduced their reliance on meta data for search results.
Nowadays, none of the top engines (what we consider to be the top) use the keywords meta element, but some still do.
You can read more about this here: The keywords meta tag in 2013.
FTC (Federal Trade Commission)
Regulations updated for reviews and content
The FTC updated its reviews and links regulations and if you review products on your site that carry an affiliate commission on potential click-through to sale or any other form of compensation for the review, endorsement or connection, you are required by the FTC to display an appropriate disclosure notice on your page.
These FTC regulations are not new, but the guidelines have recently been updated and now include more specific requirements.
The revised Guides reflect the three main ‘truth in advertising’ principles:
- Endorsements must be truthful and not misleading.
- If the advertiser doesn’t have proof that the endorser’s experience represents what consumers will achieve by using the product, the ad must clearly and conspicuously disclose the generally expected results in the depicted circumstances and;
- If there’s a connection between the endorser and the marketer of the product that would affect how people evaluate the endorsement, it should be disclosed.
These changes were on the cards for some time and are nothing that wasn’t expected.
What does that mean for bloggers and website owners?
I wrote a post about this which you can read here: FTC Regulations which also lists some sites where you can make an accurate disclosure statement which will be acceptable.
NEW INTERNET ADDRESSES COMING SOON (domain extensions)
ICANN, (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) is preparing for the biggest change to the internet address scheme since its initial introduction in the 1980’s. Over a thousand new suffixes are being considered giving users many more choices.
The first releases are expected in mid 2013 and some of these will not be available to the general public such as .ibm and .toyota etc. Some will be geographically based such as .newyork and others will include .vacation, .app and .tech and it’s thought that these will generate a higher purchase price.
You can read more information on this here: New domain extensions.
It’s the first spam I’ve received on this blog in a quite a few months now.
Spam is just a pain in the backside so I always make a point of posting it, just not in the way the spammers thought; so here’s this months spammers:
DollieBarker23 tried to add a link to some ‘custom written essay’ site. Erm… no thanks!
Jean Drayfuss wanted me to approve a link with four hyperlinks in it, all to the same page! Hmmm… Someone hasn’t learned about comment ethics, or even how to post a spammy comment!!
I thought that was bad enough, ‘til I saw a comment that was manually submitted from a spammer called:
Superb James… Not!! 23 (twenty three) links to the same page! (Prat)
John Dennington posted a spammy comment with 8 links in it. No comments, just 8 links! Well, No thanks John Denington!
To end on a more upbeat note…
Here’s a nice little giveaway to finish this month off…
A great selection with MRR and PLR rights which you can download: HERE!
As usual, you don’t need to give your email address, you don’t have to sign up for anything, you don’t have to subscribe to any newsletter… or anything else for that matter. (unless you want to) Which you can do here! :0)
Read about my giveaway principles HERE.
Just download the free stuff, and make it worth the time and effort by putting at least some of it to good use!!
’til next month
…and finally, as usual…