Tag Archives: google

SEO, how you have changed !

I had lately a couple discussions which made me realize there are loads of misconceptions about SEO.

SEO used to be magic. Some guys with a magic wand would be able to boos your ratings to Google top result list by tweaking a few tags here in there in your pages. Some dark wizards pretending to wield such powers still roam the web but let’s face it : they have largely become extinct – or at least have evolved as provider of best practices to improve your site as SEO technology has evolved to behave manly instead of being a simple easy-to-trick algorithm.

I’ll try to get a few points straight – and if you have specific questions please let me know:

1. What is SEO

My definition of SEO varies greatly from what it used to be: SEO is the art of making sure a human can easily navigate your site contextually and discover it all.

This means that your site’s backbone will enable a user to reach leaves answering specific questions by narrowing progressively the field of research.

“Easy navigation” also means making sure your content is easy to read and understand in a glimpse.

2. I’ve been stuffing keywords and paying for backlinks to get my SEO up – am I a fool ?

Well…. basically yes. Those techniques have become largely counter-productive.

Traditionally, the SEO “techniques” would incorporate the following elements:

  • keyword stuffing
  • link exchanges

But those techniques have become largely inefficient. If you want proof, check out what happened to Rap Genius a couple months ago: they got banned from Google! And indeed their link exchange technics were pure SEO Spam.

But back-links from high-reputation sites will help your ranking – so where’s the line will you ask ?

3. You must think of Google as a human

Google is special – it’s  the key source of organic traffic for many – and unlike Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and others he actually understands your HTML content from an end-user prospective. The other sites will look at tags and will not try to “understand” the content – hence you can easily fool them with keywords that have nothing to do with your page’s content and push them into doing the social actions you intend (i.e. share a cat picture from a very serious blog post when liking it).

But Google understands native language. It doesn’t really handles properly javascript and CSS yet, so you can still get some flexibility regarding how the content marked within your HTML page actually shows up to users, but he DOES understand your words.

If you follow simple HTML structure rules, and use the HTML tags properly (<title>, <h1><h2><h3>…) then Google will be able to understand what this page is about and it will make its way at the right spot in the search results.

If you focus on making sure that a user will easily be able from your homepage to discover the whole site by recursively following links within your site, you can be sure Google will be able to properly index the site. Even the sitemap is getting “deprecated” – a site without a sitemap will get indexed just as well.

4. So what matters?

The best way to do SEO is to focus on the site usability and on its content, making sure that each page has its own url and can be easily found within the site.

Backlinks matters, but beware of spamming backlinks or sophistically created links (with plenty keywords stuffed in your link tags…). Don’t think of it as pagerank, this ok it as third parties giving “trust” to your resources – google understands and appreciates that.

What matters most from my experience is how original and dynamic your content is. If your content is user generated and will be commented / edited by users regularly, Google will LOVE it and come check it back often. This is typically whi Wikipedia has so high rankings : heaps of backlinks get high trust and very dynamic content scores additional points.

5.  Are there any tools I should use ?

The best tool is Google Webmaster: it will help you assess wether Google bot can access and parse your site easily.

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Google maps indoor comes to France

Google just announced on their google maps blog that lucky Android users in France (as opposed to sad apple maps users) now have access to indoor maps in a bunch of popular venues :

Whether you use indoor maps to view the different departments of iconic French retailers like Galeries Lafayette Montparnasse, or simply to find your way to a fresh loaf of bread at the local Carrefour supermarket, Google Maps for Android can help you explore the great indoors. For a list of locations for which indoor maps are available, check out our Help Center article here.

Setting up your venue for indoor location is actually surprisingly issue, first, create and upload a floor plan, then use the Google maps floor marker app to improve location (by collecting publicly broadcast data on sample points on the floor plan)


Google’s Project Glass

Is Google 3vil?

It’s true that sometimes when you think about all the intel google gets on your lives it’s scary – hopefully they don’t really care about your lives themselves and only want the advertisement money.

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Google latitude on Android

Finally managed to have latitude work on my Android phone this costed me a firmware update and a complete factory reset but now it’s working! Basically it’s built right into google maps 3.0 and it’s fairly easy to use : just add friends from your address book and latitude will share with them your position. When on your PC a widget lets you see where they are.
Nothing really groundbreaking here – Mobiluck has been doing the same for years now but still it’s nicely implemented and maybe it will be easier for Google to reach critical mass which is key for that kind of service in order to be fun and useful !
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