Google

Local SEO for Website Owners

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local-seo

Local SEO is a term that refers to techniques and conceptual frameworks used to make it easy for a prospective client of customers to locate a company or service website that is closest to their proximity and will accommodate their unique search needs. In most cases, people are looking for the particular types of services or products that you sell or provide but they usually do not have a specific provider in mind. At such a juncture, Local SEO services aids the search engines in locating the businesses that can best suit their needs by displaying them on the search results page.

It is, therefore, inherent that you have a domain website that contains all the necessary information related to your services and any other pertinent information. Furthermore, It is also important to implement appropriate SEO techniques to make that information as clear as possible for the search engines.

Major developments

It is vital to note the importance of the key developments that Local SEO has obtained in such a short period and the marked upswings that have occurred:

  • The Pigeon algorithm completely changes because of Google gaining a better understanding of local searches and queries.
  • Late in 2014, the popular software service company known as MOZ published a report on local ranking analytics, the first ever since the debut of the Pigeon algorithm, provides web user some insight on changes in Local SEO. One of the main observations related to local results is the importance of a user’s location when using the search engine.
  • There is a notable change in the search results for some categories such as restaurants and hotels. The conventional images that come with local results have been eliminated, and much more information that is now beneficial is incorporated.

Some of the Local SEO developments you can expect to come across in 2016 include page tagging, local or vocal searches, conversion rate improvements and app store optimization amongst many others.

Web

Young People Like Tinder Apps

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sunset

Tinder refers to how people connect with other or meet. It is quite an interesting way and in fact fun. You know why? Because what you experience is like real, where you can meet people in person. For easier understanding, this App was discovered as a dating App, and is key to the dating world. So, this is a dating site if you like. When it first came, it was not quite known, but day by day, it has become a very important App for very many young people.

Tinder is used by young people who are desperately up for dates or hook ups. Sometimes they use it for just fun and to mingle with other people, their age mates in dating topics among others.

Initially, it could not be trusted, but believe me that today, it is providing efficient ways to meet mingle and seriously make up a relationship. The App was launched in 2012, and as I said, it has developed to be popular. For example, on April 2015, there were 1.6 billion profiles for users. 6 billion matches have already been made, and 2.6 million matches or more are made daily. As you know, young people looking for lovers are said that they like to ‘explore.’ This App provides such an opportunity. Young people get a chance to find a love of their dream through a hook up that they will not regret. That is simply why these Apps have become popular. We have young people calling them ‘dating world,’ and sure they are. They also like it because it is always there for them (readily available).

There are big changes coming to this App. One is that we will offer a new way to swipe. That looks like giving new power to our users. You can now swipe upwards. It has started in Australia and it is just excellent. It is also expected to go global. By swiping upwards, it gives you one opportunity to ‘star’ who attracts you.

Web

7 Best Free Web Design Blogs

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web-design

We should all want to become better web developers. Whether you are a hobby blogger or full-time web designer, improving your site design and development will help you deliver better service, boost site traffic and convert views into clicks. Here is a list of my top seven web design and development blogs. Don’t worry, they’re FREE!

  1. Smashing Magazine

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/

By far the most popular online resource for web designers and developer, Smashing Magazine has a huge following for good reason. It covers all everything a web developer of any level would need to know in a language we can all understand.

  1. CSS-Tricks

https://css-tricks.com/

This blog is another resource for tutorials, articles, code snippets and forums for those who use CSS and want to look cool doing it.

  1. Tuts + Web Design Tutorials

http://webdesign.tutsplus.com/

Whether it HTML, CSS or UX, this site has tutorials on every aspect of design and development. Covering topics from graphic design and animation to music production, there is no aspect of web design left untouched.

  1. 1stwebdesigner

http://www.1stwebdesigner.com/

The Freebies page on this blog is enough to keep you coming back for more. But in case you are looking for an awesome resource for web tools, design inspiration, WordPress themes and tutorials, 1stwebdesigner is your ideal destination.

  1. WPBeginner

http://www.wpbeginner.com/

The name says it all. This blog is everything Word Press, for the novice and the non-professional. The tips, tricks and tutorials are designed to help newbies and bloggers navigate the most popular content management system online.

  1. Codrops

http://tympanus.net/codrops/

This experimental blog quickly morphed into a credible resource of article and tutorials about web design. More than just a how-to guide, it has a vast collection of plug-ins and code blocks that you can download and use. Enjoy!

  1. Webdesigner Depot

http://www.webdesignerdepot.com/

This blog dispenses tutorials, news, freebies and tips that you will quickly find indispensable. Just give it a try.

The internet is a fast paced world for businesses and hobbyists alike. Keeping abreast of what is new and evolving as a designer is made easier by design and development blogs like the 7 listed above.

Google

The Basics of Link Building

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link-building

Link building is one of the most important elements in SEO. The quality of the links leading to a website, and the number of those links, are factors used by search engines for ranking content in search results. It is important to know what type of websites your links should appear on how to go about building those links.

The Best Sites for Link Building

Educational sites and official source sites are considered to be good authority sites for link building, but only when they have some connection with the topics covered by your own website or blog.

The higher a site is ranked and the more traffic it is getting, the more impact it will have for your own site. Your content and its ranking in search results will benefit more if some of the top blogs feature a link to your site, and when your content is linked from high quality sites, it greatly boost your Search Engine Optimization in Singapore.

Three Legitimate Link Building Techniques

  1. Article sites are very popular with website owners who want to increase their SEO. There are a few article sites where links can be placed in the text. Others will permit only one link, which features in an author profile box at the end of every article you submit.
  2. Some directories are little more than link farms, but there are some where it is worth submitting your link. These are business or niche directories where your listing will be a page filled with content relating to your line of business or what is featured on your website. For instance, a niche directory featuring listings of psychics and spiritual healers will give each psychic healer a full page of content, which gives details of services provided, specialist knowledge and techniques, contact details and a link to their website.
  3. Writing blog posts for high ranking blogs is another technique for link building, but it is important to understand that Google can identify guest blogs that have been written only for the purpose of link building. The legitimate way to use guest blogging for link building is to have only genuinely informative content appear in guest posts which show some expertise in the subject. Your link will appear in a brief author profile at the end of each published guest post.

Link Building is Here to Stay

Since Google has started to penalize websites for artificial link building, some people have been scared off from attempting legitimate link building and will no longer consider it as an effective way to increase ranking.

Genuine links to your content will have a beneficial impact on your site’s ranking in search engines and legitimate techniques are used by the most successful SEO experts and online marketing businesses.

Search engines will continue to give a higher ranking to sites with a good number of links leading from authority sites, and from high ranking content, when those links appear on pages with plenty of relevant content.

Google

First Steps To Ranking On Google With SEO

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step-seo

Search engine optimization or SEO is an important part of online business. It can be defined as a method to increase one’s position on Google Search. This ranking is significant because many people who search for a certain topic never go beyond page two, most will never go beyond page one. The subject can be very complex, and many persons with new businesses are intimidated by all of the information and rules surrounding it. Happily, there are steps that can be taken to increase page rankings by companies that can’t afford an SEO expert.

1) Keywords and Long Tail Words

A keyword is simply a word that describes what can be found at a site. For example, a freelance writer may choose to use the keyword Author. The big issue here is that some keywords have been used by many large and older businesses meaning that the writer may not have a chance to rank with it as so many others already have.

There are tools such as Google Adwords Keyword Tool or other free keyword tools on the internet. Just enter the word, and it will tell you how popular it is. For a new company, the goal is to find a keyword that has a high ranking without being to high. It is often better for a new business to use long tail keywords. These are simply phrases of more than two words that searchers may use to find what they are looking for in a search. Our writer, for example, may use the long tail freelance article writer. A thesaurus is handy for finding long tails.

2) Keyword Stuffing

The more time a keyword is used, the better, right? Wrong, Google calls the overuse of keywords or long tails as keyword stuffing and will penalize the site by drop it’s rank. It’s important to play by Google’s rules, or you will be punished. As a general rule, a keyword or long tail should not be used more than five times per page. Also, it should be used at least once in the title.

3) Link Building

One way Google determines how well a site ranks in quality is through links. A link should only be made to quality sites. Many times if a person mentions another site and lets the owners know then they will politely add a link back to the original article.

Be very careful with this. Google will only reward quality links and only a few at that. Make sure the site you link to is not a spam site or one that overuses links. At one time, some sites would over links to other nonquality sites for a price in attempt to increase their rank. Do not try this, Google will penalize you and possible drop your site altogether.

One last word, Google will check to see how often you offer new content. This is vital in ranking a page for quality. Many people add new content at least once a week to improve or keep their ranking.

Google

Q & A Session Regarding gTLDs, and TLDs

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tlds-google

There are many new generic top-level domains (gTLDs) available, so we would like to give some insight into how they are handled in Google’s search engine. We will also address the many misconceptions, and questions regarding the treatment of new top-level domains (TLDs) such as .guru, .how, or any of the .BRAND gTLDs.

Question: How will new gTLDs affect searches? Is Google changing their search algorithm to favor these TLDs? Will the new gTLDs and TLDs give an advantage or disadvantage in keyword search?

Answer: Overall, the system regards new gTLDs the same way they treat the older ones, such as .com or .org. Keywords, in the new TLDs, do not give an advantage or disadvantage when searching.

Question: What happens with IDN TLDs such as .????, can Googlebot crawl and index them. Will they be able to be used in search?

Answer: Yes, those TLDs can be used the same way as other TLDs. You can check with a query site, like site.????, with the same ease as any other site. Google deals with the Punycode version, of a hostname, equivalent to the unencoded version. You do not need to redirect, or canonicalize them separately. You must remember to use UTF-8 for the remainder of the URL. This is critical for the path and query string, in the URL, when using non-ASCII characters.

Question: Will a .BRAND TLD be given more or less importance then a .com?

Answer: No, all TLDs will be treated the same as gTLDs. They will require the same geo-targeting configurations and settings. They will not influence the way we crawl, index, or rank URLs.

Question: How are the new region and city TLDs, such as .London or .Bayern, handled?

Answer: At this point, they will be treated as gTLDs, even if they look region specific. This is consistent with the handling of regional TLDs, such as .eu, and .asia. There may be exceptions at some point in the future, after the evidence of how they are used in practice. Please see our help center regarding additional information on multi-regional , and multi-lingual sites. Please make sure to set geo-targeting in the Search Console where relevant.

Question: Regarding real country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), will Google favor ones like .uk, or .ae as local domains for people searching on those countries?

Answer: Most ccTLDs, by default, result in Google using them to geo-target websites. It informs us that the website is probably more relevant in the appropriate country. However there are some exceptions. Please see our help center for more information regarding multi-regional, and multi-lingual sites.

Question: Will Google support SEO efforts to move domains from .com to new TLDs? How are websites moved without losing any search ranking or history?

Answer: Our Help Center contains extensive site move documentation. We treat these moves the same as any other site move. However, domain changes can take additional time to be processed for search. Outside of search, users should expect email addresses to remain valid over a longer period of time. It is generally best to choose a domain that will fit your long term needs.

We hope this question and answer session gave you good additional information about how top-level domains are handled. If you have further questions, please drop them here, or ask about it in our help forums.

Design

Inspiring Top 5 Design Blogs

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design

We all need regular inspiration and ideas to help us on our creative journey. The Internet is the perfect place to explore, discover and find inspiration but finding those niche blogs that can add a spark to your creative life is sometimes difficult. So with that in mind, we have made a list of five design blogs chosen for their inspiring and cool design tips and ideas. Ideas to jump-start your own journey to create or achieve what you want in life. We have also written a bit about why we love these blogs and how they inspire and inform our own thinking.

  1. Apartment Therapy

“Helping people make their homes more beautiful, organized and healthy by connecting them to a wealth of resources, ideas and community online.”

The blog Apartment Therapy (UK link) is brimming with ideas for indoor as well as outdoor projects. We love to read their style tips and to choose from their wide selection of awesome DIY ideas.

  1. Hop Interiors

“Eye Candy for the Interior Hungry”

We enjoy Hop Interiors because it explores fun ideas that you can adapt to transform your home.

  1. Fabric of my Life

“Online scrapbook of inspiration”

We are intrigued by the mixture of international styles in the blog Fabric of my Life. You find everything from trendy colourful Japanese design to understated elegant Scandinavian furniture.

  1. Inhabitat

“Green design is good design

Good design is green design”

If you want inspiration for eco-friendly, sustainable and stylish designs then Inhabitat with its focus on future designs is perfect.

  1. Design Squish

Art + Design + Nature + Lifestyle

The blog Design Squish has inspirational nature photography. You find everything from wooden puzzle toys to lamps made from mushroom mycelium in this blog filled with sustainable ideas.

Web

The Slow Death of Internet Explorer

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death-of-ie

To think it has been a decade or two since the Netscape and Internet Explorer debacle. It has been a decade since the infamous Internet Explorer 6 came into existence and lit up our screens with pop up ads for products that we did not want or need or not safe for work ads. Those ads would popup at the most awkward moments. There was no popup blocker then for IE at the time. The frustration of sites not working or how long it took to load pages. AIM and AOL were big back then and dial up was king. Chat rooms and instant messaging were the norm and not the exception. Junk emails filled email accounts without much of a spam filter. Nokia companies has closed same with certain features of Yahoo. Some have nostalgia for those days while others called it ‘the Dark Age of the Internet’. ‘IE’ aka Internet Explorer was the browser everyone disliked and computer security specialists loathed. The internet has evolved since then and Internet Explorer still to this day remains notorious.

Microsoft is hoping to bury Internet Explorer for good with their new browser Edge. The browser Edge comes with Windows 10 and has a host of features. Microsoft claims that it runs faster than both Chrome and Firefox (the two main browsers that are used right now). The search function is fast and easier than before and the UI has changed to make it easier for the user. The hub has everything from your downloads to your reading list. If an article is informative you are able to write notes on the page. The reading list makes it so interesting reads can be saved. Cortana makes her debut to Microsoft’s new Edge to help with searches. Just ask Cortana something and she will answer. The browser has so many features available for it. It may or may not live up to the hype.

The browser could end up like Internet Explorer if Microsoft does not listen to it’s users. Users love Firefox for it’s customization and Chrome for it’s speed and flexibility. They have spend years making sure they were user friendly and used Internet Explorer as an example on how not to make a browser. Internet Explorer was disliked for a reason. It was filled with security holes which could give a person malware from just going to a site. It did not work with a lot of websites and gave website owners lots of trouble when making or updating their sites. Active X has now became a dirty word due to the security risks and frustration. Microsoft either stopped caring about IE or just got too arrogant. They need to be open to new ideas and listen to the site admins or web designers about Edge’s problems if any come up. To get the users they have to gain the trust of them. Safety is a big concern now with PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs), Rogue Anti-Virus, Ransomeware, rootkits, and other scary malware. There is also another thing Microsoft needs to know so history will not repeat itself. Privacy is a main concern as well among users and if they disregard that they will stay relevant but instead of beloved Microsoft would become infamous.

If Microsoft thinks they can stay relevant forever they are wrong. The browser, and Windows being high quality products will make sure they are kept alive and relevant in today’s internet.

Google

R.I.P. Google+

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google-plus-rip

With Google no longer requiring its millions of users to have a Google+ account to use the many different services that the search engine giant has to offer, the Google+ service itself is essentially in the process of dying. If people wish to use different Google services, all that is required is one of two things: a Google account or a Gmail account.

This also means that YouTube will now revert to being used exclusively through normal Google accounts rather than Google+ accounts. Furthermore, YouTube users will no longer be required to have a Google+ account if they want to comment on a video, upload their own, or even create their own channel.

Bradley Horowitz, the vice president of photos, streams, and sharing for Google, went on record to state while Google got certain things right, they were forced to rethink a few things since many people stated how much more convenient it was to access Google’s services with a single account. Horowitz said that they also realize how much it doesn’t make sense that a Google+ account should be the only form of identity that someone has when using Google products.

Horowitz also says that, in addition, unlike Google+ accounts, normal Google accounts will not be able to be followed or searched by anyone else, as well as offering better options for users to both manage and remove their public Google+ profiles if they wish to do so. This comes off the heels of the identity of a transgender woman being revealed to colleagues who had not previously known that she had undergone gender reassignment surgery.

At the Google I/O event in June, Google Photos was announced, which began the essential dismantling of Google+, as the end of photo sharing and services such as Hangouts through Google+ had further signified this would be happening.

It has since been announced that Google+ will continue to operate as a separate and optional social network. This will involve posts being organized by topics rather than by individuals.