Why is Google not displaying the correct title of my web page on its search results?

Some times Google does not display the right title of the web page in its search listings. It does not mean that Google has not indexed your website. If you look at the Google cache of your web page you will see that it has indexed the page with the correct title.

This usually happens when Google feels that the page title is not descriptive enough of the content being presented on the web page. It also takes information from Dmoz however this depends whether your website is listed there or not. If it is listed on Dmoz then please add the following tag in the <head> section of your web page.

<meta name=”robots” content=”NOODP”>

This will tell Googlebot and other robots to ignore content from Dmoz and only use the title of the web page for display in it’s search listings.

You can read more on this on Google Site title and description

Hope the above helped!

How to use Google Analytics Event Tracking to track your clicks and impressions

Most directory and listing websites on the internet need to record how many times their listings have been viewed by visitors and how many have clicked on them. Not only that they need to discount the impressions and clicks of search engine crawlers and spam bots from the actual data so that their data is correct and they have a clear picture of the ROI they are generating.

The most obvious way would be to record all this information into the database however this would not be ideal in the following cases

1. If the same visitor refreshes the listing page several times the data would not be accurate as the code would run each time the page is refreshed.
2. The database size could grow at an exponential rate and even if it’s manageable the amount of redundant data would not help in identifying correct ROI.
3. Members and investors of the website would not get the complete picture and this may increase frustration levels.

Enter Google Analytics!

Google Analytics to the rescue
Google Analytics to the rescue

Google Analytics provides a feature called Event Tracking which helps website owners to record information such as impressions and clicks very easily. You just need to add a one line JavaScript code and you are in business.

For e.g. if you are trying to record impressions on a business listing page you could put in the following code.

_gaq.push([‘_trackEvent’, ‘Business’, ‘Listing’, ‘Business Name here’]);

If you are trying to record the number of clicks for that business you can add the following line to your anchor tag (<a>)

_gaq.push([‘_trackEvent’, ‘Business’, ‘Click’, ‘Business Name here’]);

If you would like to know how you want to place this line in your anchor tag then please see below

<a href=”javascript:;” onclick=”javascript:_gaq.push([‘_trackEvent’, ‘Business’, ‘Click’, ‘Business Name here’]);”>Business Name</a>

The best part is that Google discounts redundant clicks and impressions as well as search engine crawlers and spam bots from its data so you can have the accurate picture.

Hope the above helped!

How to 301 redirect static URLs using htaccess

If your website has static URLs i.e. do not contain any query string parameters and you need to redirect your old website URLs to your new website URLs then you don’t have to fear anymore. You can write simple redirect statements in your .htaccess file and you don’t have to be regular expression guru.

Add the following line in your .htaccess file

redirect 301 /oldname http://www.example.com/newname 

As you can see in the above statement the htaccess tells the Apache web server to 301 redirect URL if it encounters /oldname to http://www.example.com/newname. You can add as many statements as you like however if there are over 20 plus URLs then consider using RedirectMatch. You should try your hand at regular expressions and get the job done in few statements.


How to 301 redirect non-www URLs to www URLs using htaccess

If your website can be accessed by two different URLs then your website could be penalized for duplicate content by the search engines which would be costly in terms of your rankings. For e.g. if your website can be accessed by http://www.exampleurl.com and http://exampleurl.com then Google may deem it as duplicate content.

Google provides a method known as setting up your “Preferred Domain” in your Google Webmaster Tools. Once you have done that then Google would crawl, index and rank your website using the Preferred Domain however they still recommend that you should 301 redirect all other URLs to your Preferred Domain URL so that you can use any link juice on those links and improve your website ranking.

Add the following code in your .htaccess file which will 301 redirect all non-www URLs to your www URL.

RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www\.
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.%{HTTP_HOST}/$1 [R=301,L]


How to 301 redirect SSL URLs to non-SSL URLs using .htaccess

If you would like to rewrite your SSL URLs to non-SSL URLs then please add the following code to your .htaccess file.

RewriteCond %{SERVER_PORT} ^443$
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.adeelsarfaraz.com/$1 [R=301,L]

The above code should be used in the following conditions:

1. Your website used to run on https:// and now it does not use SSL.
2. Your website has case your website is not using SSL anymore and you have https:// pages indexed in Google and other search engines.


Avoid keyword stuffing with the help of keyword analysis tool

I have just developed a very simple keyword analysis tool which would allow visitors to check the number of keywords they have used in their web page/article/paragraph and in the process save themselves from committing keyword stuffing within their articles.

It works by allowing visitor to enter the number of keywords (one on each line) and then paste the article in the next text box. Then the visitor just needs to click on the Generate button and the system will calculate the number of times a particular keyword has been used in that article. The keyword which has been found will show up in the Found Keywords text box and the ones not found will be shown in the Not Found keywords text box.

Here is the keyword analysis tool

Importance of a coming soon page for a website

A Coming Soon page is an important if not a necessary step during website development. The coming Soon page usually comes at the end of website development when the website has been developed and is in the testing/quality assurance stage. Depending on the progress at this stage the client can ask the development team to setup this page on his hosting server. Most clients are very eager on the launch of their website especially if it’s their first one and some clients even place ads in the daily newspapers to attract visitors to their website.

A Coming Soon page is a one page HTML which comprises of the website logo, brief introduction of the website, “first to know when the website launches” email input box. If the website is to come up for SEO after its launch then the content is tweaked further to include some content rich keywords and phrases so that if the crawler comes about then it will index the page with those keywords. It does help with future SEO.

People tend to think of the Coming Soon page as just another HTML page however in the light of the above this usually serves as the last step before the website launch and provides good boost to the website upon launch.

Let me know your thoughts. It’s always nice to hear what others have to say.

How the Accordion effect helps to optimize your website?

We all know that content is king when we talk of websites trying to achieve high rankings on Google. To achieve this effect website owners employ content writers to write keyword rich content for their websites. Sometimes they go overboard with keyword stuffing but most of the time these things pay off and they reap huge dividends when their website starts receiving traffic on targeted keywords.

However while all the above is true there are some things which you cannot control and those are client requirements. Clients don’t want to change the look and feel of the website by much (most of the time) and you have limited space to manoeuvre. The reason is that they don’t want the website revenue function to be hampered in any way while at the same time they want their SEO team to provide them the results they are paying them for.

Well the Accordion effect has brought about a much needed solution in this regard. The Accordion effect allows you to update content on the webpage though initially hidden from the visitor. If the visitor clicks on the title of the article then the content is shown otherwise it’s hidden. This effect allows you to optimize the content for the search engine as well as the customer without the danger of Google penalizing your website for hidden content. Accordion has become a very important tool for a SEO as it provides solution in the fast moving and changing environment we live.

If you would like to see the Accordion effect in action on a website then you can browse this page and see how it uses this effect to optimize itself.

Hope the above helped.

Google Affiliate Network: A new beginning

After seeing the success of CJ.com, Linkshare.com, ShareASale.com people were expecting that Google would be launching itself in this domain in the near future. Google took its first step by acquiring DoubleClick Performics Affiliate operations in March 2008. Performics now acts as part of the Google Affiliate Network.

If you would like to apply for the Google Affiliate Network then please make sure of the following main points:

1. Your website should have considerable traffic.
2. You should know how to convert visitor traffic.

For more details you can head off to their page and read the FAQ.

How should I know if my website has good traffic?
Easy! You can check the amount of traffic on your website using Google Analytics. It gives you complete details on the pageview, hits, unique visitors etc.

Google may just be entering this field but seeing the success of Adwords, Adsense and other products I feel that they will give a good run for their money to the giants.

Let’s see what happens.