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CitrusKiwi's Web Design and Internet blog

Here we give hints and tips about web design, seo, and internet things. We also discuss online security issues and showcase new client websites.

What to look for in your SEO company

SEO is one of those industries which has, somewhat fairly, developed a bad reputation as a bunch of "snake-oil" salemen (and women!). How so? If you have a business email you'd have, at least in your life, gotten an email (usually from some foreign company) promising #1 on page 1 of Google - guaranteed! The problem is, no one can guarantee such results (at least shortterm) as no one but Google knows their algorithm that does the ranking. SEO usually takes time and the client needs to view this as an investment and know that they are trying to help their business for the longterm. The bad news/The lies "Guaranteed" results are only achievable one way - scamming the system. The problem with this is that Google is smart. They'll catch you. Guess what happens to your ranking then? That's if they don't totally ban your site from their index. Get to...
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Small business should benefit from Pigeon

In the ever-changing world of search engine rankings, Google recently released a major upgrade to their algorithm - the first major release in quite a while. Nicknamed "Pigeon" it promises to be good for local based businesses, which make up a huge percentage of the nation's businesses and covers almost every "Mom and Pop" one. Local business directories - you've all used them before, they're Yelp, TripAdvisor, etc - have received a boost and the long-running fracas between Yelp and Google seems to have been fixed, with Yelp results now showing up properly in searches. So what's in it for me? If you're a local business, that is, you don't try and grab your customers right throughout the nation, you could see a significant improvement in search rankings - depending on the search phrase of course. If someone searches for "Pizza, Phoenix", or "sporting goods, surprise az", then, assuming your site...
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Back links v Content - who wins?

Content v Back LinksIn early web days, back links didn't exist so this was an easy question to answer,, well, it never got asked! The last 4-5 years have seen back links take on enormous weight, which lead to link farms, and link buying. Depending on who you are, this was either good or bad. Today, Google takes a very dim view of either of these practices, and regularly penalizes sites caught doing it - even if they did it a few years ago. So it's not uncommon to receive "link removal" requests from webmasters or SEO people in an attempt to get into Google's good graces again. So, does this mean that all back links are bad? No, but you need to be careful where they're coming from and how. If your site had 5 backlinks yesterday, but today has 500, Google is going to smell a rat. It's about a natural progression....
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Max Cutts on backlinks

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Is link building dead?

Google's Max Cutts on backlinksSEO has gone through so many changes over the years. When I first started building websites in the mid 90s the term didn't really exist. There were so few site (relatively speaking) that you had be be doing something awfully wrong not to rank OK. Then came metatag stuffing, keyword stuffing, link farms, link building, and it's slowly working it's way round to quality content; which, IMHO, is where it should be. Why should the fact that 10,000 sites, profiles, or whatever link to a certain page make it relevant, good content or even true? We all know that there's an enormous amount of rubbish and misinformation out there on the web. And also a lot of users who don't know right from wrong! In a video published by Google Webmaster Tools (click the image to watch Max Cutts talking about backlinks), Google Webspam team member, Max Cutts, talks candidly about...
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