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Happy Friday, What did you do this week to optimize your site?

     
12:39 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Let's share what we are doing to optimize our websites. Hopefully this will give each of us some fresh ideas or remind us of some good old ideas.

I've been working on a new video series for my site to stay ahead of the competition which have basically copied most of my good text articles.
1:33 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Last month's focus was speed tweaks.

My project in recent days has been snippet polishing. Editing the meta description can sometimes make one's listing in the SERPs look a lot more attractive.

I check the search query reports in Google Search Console and start with the queries that are sending the most traffic. One by one i work down the list to check each search to see if I'm happy with how my listing looks or if I think it can be improved.

Editing the meta description won't affect rankings, but better snippets can definitely improve one's click-through rates.

Take special care with non-branded searches which reach people who haven't heard of you yet!
3:07 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've mostly been busy cutting costs to a minimum, ditching relatively expensive or underperforming servers and adding new ones from affordable hosting providers I hadn't tried yet. Canceled some subscription services, too. Not out of necessity, but the costs do add up and the value isn't always there. ... Oh, this is the Google SEO forum. Haven't done much in the way of that, but sometimes it's easier to increase profit by reducing costs than by increasing traffic. And if these servers are indeed better, who knows!
4:38 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I am currently working on building quality backlink to my site. is there any best way to find Quality backlinks? instead of using tools.
4:56 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Money Pages: Putting them into a list of ten best earners on each site and trying to identify why they work best. Detailing traffic sources (direct or through search or social media, etc.). Is it working better now, or was it always good. History shows some pages come up and others drop as the SERPs shift and trends change.
It's quite detailed because I analyse every part of a page, its performance in mobile and desktop, and links, etc., and it takes quite a while just pulling together the data before I undertake the analysis.

I don't do this all the time as it's quite time consuming, but the recent "Fred" update meant it was going to be worthwhile for certain sites.

I'll give you an example of why it's worthwhile. One particular page was pulling in traffic because it already had a keyphrase that had become trending in social media and in search. It was a coincidence. That phrase was then used, very carefully, on other pages to maximize money-earning opportunities and drive other long tail search opportunities. It worked for around six weeks until the social media trend declined. The phrase remains in place and each page still generates a strong conversion.
6:40 pm on Mar 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I moved my site from http to https -- It's been kind of a rollercoaster since with traffic. I tried to be super careful and follow all the guides. Hoping things normalize and I don't see any duplicate stuff happening :-)

I've also been removing low traffic pages -- something I've been meaning to do for awhile. Just slowly going through all pages of the site and either updating and adding content, removing and redirecting or just removing altogether.
12:50 am on Mar 25, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've been looking at on page optimization - where I should be placing related articles and reviewing search popularity for keywords in low traffic pages to see if I can replace keywords with the ones that attract more search volume.

@Frost_Angel
Just slowly going through all pages of the site and either updating and adding content, removing and redirecting or just removing altogether


Where possible, I convert my low traffic related articles into "chapters" or "sections" with the money pages rather than removing them. I find that this works really well.
1:24 am on Mar 25, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Various speed tweaks.
Image optimization. Got featured images down to between 15 to 29 kbs
5:21 am on Mar 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've been spending the past few months going over old articles and updating them significantly, not only adding additional information but also images. But this seems to have backfired lately and those articles have dropped while the neglected ones remained the same. Before I re-publish I also do a 'news' search on the topic I've been writing about to see if anything super current has occurred. Just this Saturday I did that and found some very new information on my most read article. So it can be of help.

I added a comments section to the bottom of all pages just to let visitors post questions or feedback.

This week I just plan to keep adding new content and forget about improving old content. Having a new logo made, not that that's going to have any impact on traffic, but my current one is old and a bit outdated.

Does internal linking help in the grand scheme of things?

One thing I did (but not this week). A few months ago I broke my collarbone and was on fairly heavy drugs for two weeks and not really in the right mind to add content. I added a spell/grammar check/editor to my browser and went through every single page on my site and corrected errors. It's not 100% foolproof, but it did pick up a few typos. I always eyeball my content before I publish, then go back a few days later and eyeball again, but it's still easy for mistakes to remain. Not that it helped with optimisation, but I felt it at least gave my pages a bit more credibility.
3:12 pm on Mar 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Our main site is literally a mom-and-pop site (with me being the pop). We used to have our names and a photo in the right margin of each page, but I took them out a couple of years ago in the interests of streamlining. Last week, I added them back (except on pages served to smartphones), on the theory showing the real human beings behind the site might be appealing to readers.
7:56 pm on Mar 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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That's a good idea. I have a photo on the 'about me' page, but that's all.

I've noticed that the Internet has become a bit more personal the last few years. Instead of 'don't contact me, ask on the forums', webmasters are more open to direct communication. I hope the new comments section will also make the site a bit more personal and allow for interaction between me/my visitors.

I just ordered some custom designed images for my pages. I hope that will help the readers to understand what I'm talking about with some of the more complicated topics.
8:05 pm on Mar 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've noticed that the Internet has become a bit more personal the last few years.

I'll confess that I've vacillated a bit. We used photos in the early days of the site (which has been around, in one form or another, since 1996). Later on, with the proliferation of bloggers in our sector--all promoting their "personal brands"--it almost seemed more professional not to have photos.

Still, now that every angel and his brother is investing in generic sites made up of 250-word filler content written by third-world freelancers, there may be value in celebrating our status as real people who have been dispensing professionally-written, expert advice for a long time.
3:39 am on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yes, me too. In the early days I was happy for people to know who I was, but the site grew, we had some crazy people (in the days my forums were popular), I received threats when having to ban troublesome members, had young children and preferred to be a bit more anonymous. But I am happy for people to know who I am now. I feel Facebook may have been a part of the re-personalistion, as many people (myself included) lost our fear of people knowing who we are online.

Do the 250 words really cut it though? Sure they may get a brief lift but surely over time they would sink down the search engines? I think people are less tolerant of filler text now. They want good quality information.
3:53 am on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Wrote two articles, creating 2 pages

Created 6 images

Updated events guide

Updated index page

Minified CSS

Combined two scripts

Broke up with GF as it interfered with online time

Continued daily Social Media posts/tweets/etc (3rd largest source of traffic)
9:05 am on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Broke up with GF as it interfered with online time

Sssh. The #1 secret to ranking in Google.
12:12 pm on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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i will do nothing as working for 1 year on my site and injecting thousands of dollars equated to me having lower traffic than when i started! nice update google.
12:39 pm on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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...working for 1 year on my site and injecting thousands of dollars...
So the 30k_a_month is what it's costing you?
12:46 pm on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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no that was my profit target per month. last year i was spending 3-4k a month for the whole year and 40 hrs of my time per week.
12:58 pm on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Our sites do become a labor of love, highly frustrating at times though. I would never put in the same amount of hours on a client's site as I do on my own.
2:44 pm on Mar 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I think people are less tolerant of filler text now. They want good quality information.

I agree. In our niche, there are thousands of sites with content that could be described as "broad but shallow." I prefer a "narrower but deep" approach, and it's been working for us in terms of rankings and traffic.

There's also a bonus: By targeting visitors who read (and who have a decent attention span), we attract an audience of educated, high-income readers who stick around long enough to generate revenue.
9:28 am on Mar 29, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Wrote a parser for check.torproject.org/exit-addresses to block exit nodes from accessing/trying to scrape our ECom sites.