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SEO News Roundup for February 25, 2011

February 25th, 2011 | | SEO News Roundup

There was an interesting post this week by Tad Chef on SEOptimise about attacks on SEO for poor search results.  Particularly, Tad is commenting on a recent article claiming that search sucks.  Is it fair to blame search engine optimization for poor search results, considering the definition of SEO is to fix and improve a website so it can be found?  Tad doesn’t think so, and would rather consider an SEO specialist as a metaphorical mechanic rather than the road engineer.  Check out the article for more interesting views on SEO’s role in search and Tad’s opinion on the controversial content farm.

According to the writers at Searchenginejournal.com, there are some definite reasons why the SEO Industry changes so often. The industry isn’t just a ball rolling downhill with no real direction—there are a few factors that influence it indefinitely. The first reason is that spammers always find a loophole to exploit; any advancement has to deal with spammers. The second reason is that social media has revolutionized the world of SEO and continues to do so at breakneck speed. And finally, search engines are constantly evolving to combat both of these two factors. So what to do as an SEO firm? Well, for lack of a better term, adapt and evolve or get out of the way!

Neither users nor search engines like it when a search ends up at a 404 page error.  However, sometimes a 404 cannot be avoided – especially when it results from user error.  So how do you keep your users happy when a 404 gets in the way?  Shimon Sandler recommends, on his self-titled blog, to customize it!  This can put users in a good mood, and more willing to move onto your main website.  This is just another example of how a bad situation can be turned into a branding/user experience opportunity…just look at what other companies have done to customize their 404s.

Google’s PageRank algorithm can be a difficult subject, especially when we consider the fact that they are constantly throwing changes our way. In fact, it was recently rumored that there was a new PageRank algorithm in effect. However, this was actually not the case as Val Danylchuk’s assumption backfired. In his article, he explains what really happened and clarifies the mistake. As it turns out, Google’s PageRank system has been known to lag substantially after an update, so you should keep this in mind. Thanks to the help of a few different SEO experts, everything is clear once again. Check out the full article for a more complete overview.

Whether you are launching a new website or redesigning an existing one, drastic changes to a site’s structure can have a significant impact on SEO.  Fortunately George Aspland at Search Engine Land laid out 8 essential steps to maintain SEO performance when redesigning a website.  Aspland suggests that the best approach is to begin with a site audit and then start examining things like a site’s keyword structure, navigation, error pages and inbound links.  These are all things that can be impacted by a site redesign, but can be managed effectively with the right planning. Read his post to find out how!

Abby is an Account Executive at Hanapin Marketing, a search engine marketing firm focused on generating results through PPC and SEO.

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