One of the most important things any site owner or blogger must look at is the domain name. Many newbies and sometimes even those who have been online for sometime make the mistake of choosing domain names without much thought.
A good top level domain names helps SEO in a big way. It tells not just search engines, but also the users, what the site or blog is all about. It’s very easy to connect to users with a word or two that is top of mind and they can easily relate to.
When you say astrology.com, you know that the site will offer horoscope readings, compatibility reports, psychic readings, star signs forecasts etc. If you see a domain golfaccessories.com, you instantly recognize that they sell golf accessories. You see the point why a simple easy-to-understand domain name is critical to SEO and users.
Key SEO Tip
The http://www.webmasters.org/ domain name fetched $50,000 in July 2008. This site had just 3,800 unique visitors a month was earning a mere $25 a month. The value was for the domain name only. Shows how high a value one can get for a good domain name.
If it was www.xyz.com, a user will have no clue as to the content or service offered by the site or blog.
My Simple Branding Philosophy
Not all of us have deep pockets to choose a non-dictionary name and spend on marketing to build the brand. It’s wiser to choose a name that exists in the people’s minds and use it as a site’s name. Instant recognition. No effort effort required.
If you want to run a baby names site, you should look for babynames.com. If you are blogging on pregnancy, you should first look for names with the word pregnancy. Examples of good domains would be pregnancy.com, earlypregnancy.com, pregnancystages.com, pregnancytips.com, pregnancyguide.com etc. While dot.com is preferred, .org, .info, .net, .biz are also good (and of course country extensions).
When people search, search engines like google, yahoo, msn or ask show about 10 results on a page. Apart from the title and the brief on a results page, users tend to evaluate the link to click based on the domain name. If one searched for “cancer symptoms” and found a result whose domain was “ultraxgames.com/cancerguide”, chances are that users will mistrust a gaming site that shows a page for cancer tips.
Choose a site name with core words that go with the theme of your site or blog. If you plan to offer “tips for handling obesity”, then you should look at words like weight loss, fat, obese, health, obesity, overweight, and use a combination of these words with guide, tips, surgery, cure, remedies, wellness, diet, recipes etc to find a good top level name for your website or blog.
I hope these simple domain name SEO selection tips was useful.
Many search engine experts write so much on technical SEO, but not enough on the content aspects of Search. In my own experience, I have seen that Comprehensiveness of content is a kick ass SEO tip that works well with all search engines. And more importantly with users. It works great with Google since it quickly recognizes quality and useful content.
Whenever you write keep your audience in mind. What does the user want and what are the questions on his mind? Answer them and you’ll get your visitors trooping to your site. When you write, remember there are different types of readers – people who have the time to research, people who scan, people who listen and people who love to watch videos.
Example of Comprehensive Content: When I mean publish comprehensive content, I mean deal exhaustively with the chosen topic. Let’s say Cancer Treatment is your theme for a blog post. Then you should talk about recommended treatments, side effects, alternate treatments, cancer diet, exercise and yoga for cancer patients etc. Use videos, audio files, slides, graphics, podcasts and everything in between.
Comprehensiveness, in this case, is also writing about allied subjects. Cancer survivor stories, cancer support groups, cancer forums, links to quality cancer content.
A reader may not spend a day sinking in all of these, but he’ll choose his preferred content and benefit from it.
Writing comprehensively reveals your expertise on the subject. Comprehensive content also shows you care for users who want the information. Comprehensive content also shows says that you’re not a fly-by-night blogger or site owner looking to make a quick buck and move on.
Comprehensive content is a great Search Engine Optimization secret to use for rich traffic benefits.
It’s tough to select a Search Engine Optimization service for your organization. Here are a few things you should know and ask the SEO company before signing on for their service.
First, it’s difficult to judge a domain you have little knowledge about. And two, with the kind of claims and counter claims being made about SEO black hat and white hat services, you’d surely be confused.
Browse through their site, see if you’re satisfied with the content, services, navigation, design and whether the site communicates clearly what they do. Download the Google Tool bar and activate the Google Page Rank. Check the site’s page rank. If it has a page rank of three and above, I’d say they are worth considering, provided other factors are also favourable.
If the company is making tall claims about getting Google page rank or getting you onto page one of Google for all your main keywords. Then just drop them like hot potatoes. No company can promise page one results on Google, Bing, Yahoo or any search engine for that matter.
Visit the websites of their customers. Google for the main keywords of those websites and see where the sites come up. If it's on page one, it is very good.
Study their testimonials carefully. Are they talking about good relationships or recommending them for the results they delivered.
Check about their technical competency. Will they suggest technology, navigation and design changes. Do they have skills to execute them.
In their list of clients if you see any questionable clients or domains like porn or drugs, keep off.
Check their backlinks (sites that link to them). If the links are coming from reputed sites, it's a positive signal.
Read their resources section to know their search engine optimization thoughts and methods.
Can they give you case studies about clients.
What kind of results are they promising and the time frames for delivering.
What’s their experience in your domain?
Do they provide other services like pay per click? Are they certified for Google Adwords.
Would they be willing to provide references?
How long have they been in this business and how many people work on SEO.
How transparent would they be when doing business? Are they willing to explain what they plan to do for your company.
Ask them if they’d be willing to work on a variable model like fixed costs plus incentives on delivering your objectives.
Also google their company name and see if any previous client has written about unsatisfactory services or unethical SEO techniques employed by them.
Check out their Twitter account and see what they write about and how many and what kind of followers they have. Also check out their Facebook page and Youtube videos.
It’d be great if you could seek a consultant’s services in getting you a good SEO company to work for you.
Photo from Wikipedia I just heard Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s son, Martin III, say that when Dr King was held in Birmingham jail, at the height of the civil rights movement, rather than be despondent at his own state, he‘s said to have discussed with the prison guards their woes of low wages and how it’s time to improve their lives.
Reveals the deep commitment to resolving the common man’s problems. He certainly embodied a true leader’s characteristics - hope, compassion and trust.
On Fri, Sep 17, 2010 at 2:01 AM, Rajasekar Raju wrote: Dear Rashmi,
Just a few thoughts for my favorite site.
I think you might rock if you offer a series of free templates for people to quickly create ppts about subjects they like.
Allow users to comment using “openid”.
Create a resources section on how to create a great ppt, concepts/ design elements of ppts etc. Post tutorials (ppt, video, text) on how to present ideas. Interviews with top slide makers.
Featuring pro user above regular featured presentations will not go well with most users. This is almost passing of as a regular “featured” ppt just like sponsored ads on MSN being indistinguishable from search page results.
“Browse by category” should be right on top – remember users come to see presentations. Go ahead and show them the way.
Is there a forum for slideshare users – free and pro, to discuss about developing ppts etc?
When I plug slideshare (a paid service) on my Facebook page, please allow users to see my channel as default (not your home)
Social Media marketing and content professional with a proven track record of evolving social media strategies; and implementing audience engagement programs for generating business leads. Nine years online experience creating strategic content, growing website traffic and optimizing for search. Raj engages audience through social media marketing, web, email campaigns, newsletters and blogs.