Monthly Archives

December 2013

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What Impact Do Status Code 404s Have On SEO?

By | SEO | No Comments

It has been established that Status Code 404s do appear frequently on internet pages without necessarily causing undue concern to either user or Search Engines. However the ambiguous nature of 404s is of concern to SEOs who believe that they can cause problems for the Search Engines if left unchecked for long periods. The possible causes could have an impact on SEO marketing results for specific pages negating the positive status achieved through hard work. It could well reflect Search Engine revised ratings in page rankings.

However by the same token 404s are a valuable indicator of possible problems on a site that should be addressed in one form or another in the long run. Users and rankings would certainly benefit from some guidance on what to do when they meet them on requested pages.

What precise problems can unchecked 404s cause with SEO?

  • They can break crawl paths and negatively affect accessibility
  • They can cause considerable problems if poor decisions made by Web Developers or SEO personnel redirect them to inappropriate pages
  • A 404 header response will break the link equities across Internet pages so a Search Engine will have to handle the algorithm to deal with the problem.

On large sites that suffer recurring 404s the impact could be even greater, where substantial loss of link credits would warrant a bot herding approach from the SEO operators ( link based tactical methodology to improve your Website navigation system by controlling the flow of page rank to boost the prominence of your most important Web pages). If your Web site is not properly configured then that could be a root cause of continuing error messages – especially 404s. Alternatively, Web site developers can use the default approach to 404s to prevent the most common issues. It is not necessarily a single method of resolution but rather a varied approach best suited to the Site in question.

SEOs should really implement an infrastructure that is self maintaining and optimising. Prevention is always better than cure.

The package of possible resolutions advised by professional SEOs include:

  • what might be considered a cynical approach – leave them alone and the smart Search Engines will take care of them – provided the site is configured properly.
  • Utilise soft 404s
  • 301 redirect all 404s to the home Page thus protecting link equity and allowing site visitors to arrive on the desired page should they visit the site from a 404.
  • Redirecting 404s to the Site Map
  • Redirect 404s to more relevant pages funnelling link equity.

One danger with using soft 404s is possibly raising the Search Engines suspicion and losing their trust. They expect to encounter 404s at some stage in your site pages – so authenticity could be an issue for them if try to eradicate them completely.

A considered collective solution to 404s may well be the best option. It does however require hard persistent work including automation or continual maintenance – a price worth paying in the long run. Greater SEO skills are really needed to implement a an effective strategy. Contact our SEO Dublin experts for fee tips and advice.

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Considering The Impact Of Google’s New Algorithm – Hummingbird

By | SEO

What is Hummingbird?

Contrary to the perceived belief that Hummingbird is an algorithm update, many are  incredulous at the news that it is actually a “new” algorithm. It represents a big change that has gone relatively unnoticed.

How does it differ from the old algorithm?

In reality it retains many of the features of the old rules such as weights, filters and systems of the old algorithm. Some experts describe it as an evolution of Google’s Caffeine, designed primarily to attract fresher results. Hummingbird is intended to be precise and fast – thus its name.

What aspects of SEO will it affect most?

Hummingbird appears to be aimed at improving results or more correctly supplying more precise answers to user queries, particularly for longer search phrases – more commonly known as “Semantic Search” The key for Google is understanding the user’s intent as opposed to the keywords being used. Coincidentally the new algorithm appears at the same time as Googles “reduced keyword referral data” denoting the reduced importance of keywords in Voice Search. Another change is the move towards supporting greater interaction with people and making the search process more human.

How does it reflect on Mobile SEO?

It would appear that Hummingbird is very mindful of the growing complications of search queries with mobile devices. It puts the emphasis on answers more than results and is clearly designed to facilitate the increasing use of search on such devices. It attaches a special importance to conversational search on mobile devices and takes cognisance of the way we now interact with Google across mobile technologies such as 4G, Voice Search and Google Glass. Hummingbird expresses the need for much more targeted and precise search results and the algorithm facilitates that by working more proficiently in mobile environments.

Have any real changes been noticeable since the very recent introduction of “Hummingbird?”

The expert SEO fraternity have concluded to date that”Hummingbird” is based on links like the old system , but to a slightly lesser degree. There is a clear continuing trend towards rewarding unique content and penalising thin content that depends too heavily on link building. Key Opinion leaders who offer fresh content are also rewarded. The changes incurred seem to point towards the importance of quality user experience with a slight downgrading of link value.

If you have any questions about the above article our SEO Dublin experts are here to help.

As a multi-award winning digital agency Dublin, we specialise ecommerce development and in profitable campaigns including: professional copy writing, high quality content placement, social optimisation and advertising, search engine optimisation SEO Dublin and PPC Dublin advertising, conversion rate optimisation, Magento ecommerce development, video production and 3d animation and modelling  that entice, engage and convert your target audience

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How To Survive The Zebra Stampede – Should It Be Unleashed On You In The Future

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The acid test for rich, relevant, credible content has been the Google algorithm updates of the past four or five years. If your Magento ecommerce store survived the barrage of changes and has continued to sustain credibility with the Search Engines indexing rewarding you with positive page rankings, then you have little worry – you have been doing things right. You have implemented a secure system that has insulated itself against attack from penguins, pandas and hummingbirds – but what about the oncoming zebra.

There are a number of elements that E Commerce marketers should implement in their Websites to build an armoury against any possible future down grading of page rankings. If you incorporate the following ideas then you will have an effective barrier not only against Zebras but also against any other marauding Google wildlife in future.


  • Ensure effective page indexing by the Search Engines by providing detailed product descriptions.
  • Have at least one internal link in each description that will lead to a top navigation item.
  • Avoid duplicate content penalties by varying the introductory paragraphs on all product pages – especially if you have lots of URLs.
  • Comply with future user disability directives which will demand a rolling progression from Responsive websites to new mobile builds.
  • Provide users with the ability to make shopping comparisons while still on your website. This should reflect positively on your conversions.
  • The major Search Engines are looking for schema mark-ups to index web pages more effectively, so be sure to implement schema in your web pages to assist the search Engines to potentially index more thoroughly.
  • Connect authors to their online content through Authorship mark-up. Generate authoratative credible content and prepare for the likely appearance of Author Rank in the Google algorithm. This has been muted by Matt Cutts in the recent past.
  • Create product or services videos and set up a company You Tube page with these videos.
  • Provide a ‘Line Chat’ facility for the user. It introduces a personal aspect to the cyber environment and shopping experience.
  • Flag up all your Company policies with a relevance to the consumer and law.
  • Incorporate an element of safety to counteract the rampaging Zebra by becoming a Google Trusted store.
  • Positive reviews from trusted reviewers will have an increasing positive effect with the Google crawlers and indexing.
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Zebra Update – Myth Or Reality

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Is the arrival of the much talked about Zebra update imminent or is it an aberration. Should the next Google algorithm update happen sooner rather than later, there is every likelihood that it will be a thematic sequel to the previous updates. There is some speculation that the friendly Zebra might turn anti social forcing the Social Web to start cleaning itself up.

If this is its raison d’etre then creating great site content which is shared by people on the web beyond your industry or niche and which has been contributing to page ranking indexing, may be in for a shake up. It is common knowledge that Google does not like influencers affecting their rankings so it could be that a Zebra update may well penalise over reliance on Social Media to achieve top rankings.

Google may register and penalise:

  •  too great a volume of retweets with keywords included around a link;
  • an over subscription of shares on Facebook from people outside your business sector;
  • suspicion of Google+ shares;
  • having a Pinterest page to purely promote SEO.


If a Zebra update is about to strike then take precautions to pre-empt any fallout. E Commerce Web sites will survive this if they have already weathered the storm of Caffeine, Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird – a major new algorithm with old parts attached. You have nothing to fear if your content continues to be authoratative and credible and observes the essential criteria cited in Google guidelines.


Build An Online Reputation By Hiring The Services Of Online Reputation Management Companies

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When it comes to life, reputation is something that is gained over time and this one single factor can take you a long way. If your reputation is tarnished even once, it can have long lasting effects. Similarly, online businesses and websites need to maintain their reputation in order to stay in the hunt and have steady growth. Online reputation management is a special service provided by many leading web service companies. It primarily helps your brand’s integrity from degradation. It is important to ensure that visitors feel positive vibes whenever they visit your website or come across your business online.

There could be many threats to a brand’s reputation such as misleading posts, baseless allegations, false claims etc., which can do a lot of bad if they are not shielded away from your potential customers. Companies, which provide this service, keep a check on all posts, blogs etc. related to your business in the world of internet and do every possible thing, to ensure that no content, which can affect your chances of finding new customers surfaces. It is important to understand that even one single sentence, which shows your business in a bad light, can take away hundreds of potential customers or investors from you.

If you need any help with regards to ORM, Magento or SEO our Dublin experts are here to help.

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Significance Of Web Marketing In Today’s World

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It is next to impossible to attract visitors to your website without implementing a marketing strategy. Today, there are millions of websites active related to every field or domain of life. Even if you own a very simple website about local accountants, there would be dozens of other websites doing the same. To make your website a profitable venture by attracting more traffic, it is very important, to implement successfully a well-planned marketing strategy. Be it search engine marketing SEO or be it social media marketing and integration or be it online promotions, marketing is the backbone of every business in today’s online world.

Given the fact that millions of people use the internet every day, if you have a good digital marketing plan, your products and business will grow and sell like never before as more people tend to notice it, and you can use the limelight to attract them with all your products and offers. Web marketing has all the potential to take any and every type of business to a completely new level. There are many agencies that offer web related services out here whom you can contact to starting planning a kick ass web marketing strategy for your business or website.

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Hire Affordable Website Conversion Optimization Services

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Website conversion can be defined as the process by which you turn curious people who visit your website into customers. Conversion rate acts as the ratio of people who have bought your product or have benefitted you to the total number of people who have visited your website. There are several good companies out here today, which offer good conversion optimisation services at very reasonable prices. As you might be aware, conversion is not an easy task as it deals with analysing what the visitors are looking for, and modifying the content, visuals and coding of your website accordingly. It also has something to do with search engine optimization. So, when choosing a company to get this task done, ensure that the company is an award-winning one or that it has a lot of experience.

Conversion rate optimization can improve your performance, increase sales and more importantly, increase loyalty. A handful of companies, which offer CRO services, and offers special packages according to your business, its type and scale. You can have a dedicated account manager, regular monitoring and modifications to ensure that the company is doing the task as per your requirements. As you might have realized, conversion rate optimization if done right, can indeed even convert your business from a small-scale one to a large business empire.