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Friday, August 12, 2005

Duplicate Content & Search Engine Penalties

A lot has been made of penalties for duplicate content, but as long as it is judged to be duplicate content for legitimate reasons, there should be no penalty. You ask, what constitutes a "legitimate" reason? For example, if your goal is to expand from a US market and you want to target a new market in the UK, then a sister site with duplicate content and alternate spellings (color, colour, aluminum, aluminium) may be a necessary adjustment. It may be best to set these sites up with a region domain, expanding from "" to "" This would be considered a legitimate excuse for duplicate content.

More can be read here

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Writing a Press Release for Search Engine Optimization

Writing A Search-Engine-Friendly Press Release

Press releases can contribute to an increase in search engine positioning for your site. Treat your releases like you would a well-written SEO-friendly web page. Make sure you keep these things in mind:

  1. Have a specific focus.

  2. Write copy that targets this one topic.

  3. Use keywords and key phrases liberally.

  4. Make sure you keywords are in your title.

Press releases, by nature, incorporate each of the elements used with good search engine copywriting. That makes them the perfect addition to your site.

Adding your press releases to your site is very beneficial and turning them into optimized pages that draw in additional, qualified traffic only makes good sense. When you write your next press release, try following these two steps:

  1. Choose keywords that can be easily included in your release.

  2. Incorporate keywords into your headline where possible.

With this in mind you are not only promoting your site to your readers but the search engines as well.

50 Million Americans Visited Blogs During the First Quarter 2005

We all know what they say about statistics, but just in case here is Mark Twain's quote, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."

- Autobiography of Mark Twain

First Comprehensive Study of the
Actual Online Behavior of Blog Visitors Now Available


RESTON, Va., Aug. 8,
2005 –
comScore Networks today released a report detailing the scale,
composition and activities of audiences of Weblogs, commonly known as
“blogs.”  The report, which was
sponsored in part by Six Apart and Gawker Media, found that nearly 50 million
Americans, or about 30 percent of the total U.S. Internet population, visited
blogs in Q1 2005.  This represents an
increase of 45 percent compared to Q1 2004.


Other key findings of the Behaviors of the Blogosphere report


hosting services for blogs each had more than 5 million unique visitors in Q1
2005, and four individual blogs had more than 1 million visitors each


400 of the largest blogs observed, segmented by eight (non-exclusive)
categories, political blogs were the most popular, followed by
"hipster" lifestyle blogs, tech blogs and blogs authored by women

to the average Internet user, blog readers are significantly more likely to
live in wealthier households, be younger and connect to the Web on high-speed

readers also visit nearly twice as many web pages as the Internet average, and
they are much more likely to shop online


“The fact that we found 30
percent of the online population to have visited blogs clearly underscores the
commercial importance of consumer generated and driven media,” said Dan Hess,
senior vice president of comScore Networks. 

“It’s noteworthy that while the blog audience is already quite large and
growing, its demographic composition relative to the total population will
appeal to many marketers.”

Monday, August 08, 2005

Google PageRank 10 Sites

Ever wonder who the PR10 sites belong to. I found a site that shows them and updates it when Goolge updates ther PageRank. Check out Search Engine Genie PageRank(PR) 10 Sites.

How useful is this? Not every unless you can convince them to link to you, but it is fun and interesting to see who sits at the top of the PageRank mountain.

I find it very curious that Microsoft has an interior page ranked a 10 but not their home page.

Some other interesting drops from the PR10 eshelon:

One other note of interest, Google lost most of their pr 10 pages and now most of them are PageRank 9 as well. At least we know Google isn't playing favorites. ;-)

Sunday, August 07, 2005

What are Meta Tags? Do They Help SEO

Meta tags are tags placed in the head portion of the HTML page and are intended to provide certain information to browsers and search engines such as description, keywords, copyright and other unessential information.

Their format is: META NAME="tag name" CONTENT="value"

The following meta tags are most often mentioned in connection with
SEO: "description", "keywords", "robots" and "revisit-after".

META NAME="description" CONTENT="the description of your page"

You can use this tag to add a descriptive summary of the page's
content. It will not help you to achieve better rankings in Google and will do very little for it in Yahoo!, but if the keyphrase that was searched on is in the descritpion tag Google and Yahoo! will use the content of your "description" meta tag when your site is listed in their result pages. Using this as a marketing device would better serve you than trying to stuff your keywords.

META NAME="keywords" CONTENT="your keywords"

This tag is ignored by Google, but some search engines pay some
attention to it. Do not stuff keywords here either as it won't help and can hurt you in some cases. Separate your keywords
using blank spaces or commas - it makes no difference unless you are submitting to directories. Some directories will read your site and request commas and some request spaces. I would do commas without a space.

The tag is optional.

META NAME="revisit-after" CONTENT="10 days"

This can be set at 15 days, 7 days, 1 day or whatever you like. Many
webmasters add this tag to their pages in the hope that it will force
a visiting spider to come and re-crawl the page at a frequency of
their choosing. It does nothing of the kind. Most spiders simply
ignore the tag, and many interpret it quite the other way, which
is: "Do not come earlier than instructed". If your pages contain this
tag, remove it.


This tag tells the spiders to index the page and follow all the links
that can be found on it. This is true by default, so there is no need
to add this tag.

Use META NAME="robots" CONTENT="NOINDEX,NOFOLLOW" if you do not
wish the spiders to read and index this particular page.
Use META NAME="robots" CONTENT="INDEX,NOFOLLOW" if you do not want
them to follow the links on the page.

Big Oak SEO can help you attract more targeted customers and more revenue. Visit our site today to see how search engine optimization can help you.