A well thought out search engine optimization plan is important to the survival of a website but let’s take a step back for a moment. Best free and premium wp themes for any website.
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Part of your search engine optimization strategy is the study of analytics particularly when it comes to where your visitors are coming from and what search terms they are using to find you.
I know some search engine optimization consultants keep a daily watch on sites to track exactly what effects their actions are having on the sites they have been optimizing. It seem that, for about a week, Google analytics had problems with their databases and data displayed was incorrect. The admission from Google was simple and straightforward:
Google Analytics experienced a data processing error from April 30th to May 5th. Almost all of the data has been recovered and is currently being reprocessed. The recovered data will be reflected in your reports within a few days. Please note that a small percentage of data, particularly in the area of e-commerce reporting, was not recoverable from those dates.
If you do rely on Google Analytics then you may see some strange results for that period in early May. Search engine optimization can be an inexact science at the best of times, relying on analytics that may at times be astray on increases the inexact aspects. I wonder how many consultants went back to their strategies to see why they weren’t receiving the expected results?
Sometimes it pays to use an analytics source that has a fee associated with it. When using a free service there is little recourse for any search engine optimization consultant to recoup extra expenditure caused by the incorrect data supplied. At least with a paid service you could expect some level of accountability.
Consultants often rely on analytics to track the progress of the sites that they are working on; poor data can lead to poor decisions. Find an accurate data source and your search engine optimization strategies can at least be undertaken efficiently.
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If you have Adsense for Search options on your web site then you will be interested to know that Google have updated the search facility and it is now powered by Custom Search. As the name implies, you can customize many of the search features for your web site (or blog).
These features include:(courtesy of Adsense blog)
- Site Search: you can choose to provide just site search so users can find all the information they’re looking for on your site.
- Improved indexing of your pages:AdSense for search will now index even more pages of your site, as long as we’re able to crawl them, so that your users will see more results from your site in your AdSense for search results.
- Vertical search:You can also allow your users to search across multiple sites – this could be a network of sites that you own or other related sites that you think your users might find useful.
- Tuning search results and ads with keywords: Search terms can have different meanings in different contexts, so you can now configure your search engine with relevant keywords.
- Selecting ad location: Do you want ads to appear at the top and bottom of your search results? Or along the right sidebar as well, just like on Google.com? Now you can make the call on where ads are placed.
- Quick and easy updates: Just as you use our ad management feature to quickly change the settings for your ad and referral units, you’ll be able to do the same for your search engine within your AdSense account.
This should provide a much better system and possibly a better return for publishers using Adsense for Search. Customization is certainly an improvement on the previous search options.
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One feature I like about Google Webmaster Central is the Top 20 Queries tool. You can check to see what the top 20 queries for each of your websites are AND which ones are the most clicked on. This information is helpful to you as a webmaster for a couple of reasons. First, you need to know how people are finding your website. The top 20 queries allows you to see at a glance what queries people are seeking information on and which ones your site appears for. It even tells you the lineup in the SERPs for the pages you rank for. Secondly, if you see pages that you rank for but you are not appearing in the second column for (which queries people are clicking on) then you need to re-optimize those pages or tweak them so that you “get the click.”
Another detail that you can glean from this information is keywords you want to rank for but don’t. If pages that you want to rank for do not appear in the first list then you need to figure out a way to get them there. It may mean you need to optimize those pages better or it could mean you need more link building. Whatever the case, it’s time to analyze and see how you can keep improving. Search queries tell you a lot of information about where you fall in line against your competitors for your Search Engine Optimization efforts. Pay attention to them.