Google Search Results Skewed by Knowledge Graph Gaff

When the perfect Storm of Bad Data results into a very messed up SERP! As a member of some of the Google Help Forums in which I utilize some of my years of  experience to give back help to novice users, I came across a rather odd example. One user expressed that a search for “Temple University” brought back results in the Google Knowledge Graph details for another business. In this case, as seen from the screen shot below, the address of the Philadelphia based University not only showed the address and phone number for  the “Philly Pretzel Factory” but also returned map results as well as listing the G+ profile of the Pretzel Factory Restaurant as the official G+ profile. To add insult to injury, G+ reviews lead directly to the Philly Pretzel Factory, in which at this writing were over 89 Google reviews, most of which are all related to Temple University and not the potentially fabulous Soft Pretzels one could purchase and consume.   Looking at the Official website for Temple University  http://www.temple.edu/  we see that on their website they list their address and phone number as 1801 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19122 USA, (215) 204-7000 and are utilizing the proper schema data coding to ensure proper map citations as well the the Knowledge Graph interface. The number two result in the Google search for “Temple University” brought back the Google + Local Maps /  Google My Business Page for The Philly Pretzel Factory. From the SEO factor we can only assume that the combination of Links from the Google Knowledge Graph “Write a Review” and the misinformed...

My How SEO Has Changed (Infographic)

Big Oak started out as a web design firm back in January of 2004. But by June of 2006 we had already changed our strategies and become an SEO company. Now we are focused on many other marketing specialties, which you can see here, and now we are a Internet Marketing company in the highest regard. But our roots are in SEO and seeing this infographic from QuickSprout made me wonder if the business world has accepted the idea that SEO is no longer what it was even a year ago, much less five years ago. While not all the changes are listed in this infographic, it does hit the high points, and is a cautionary infographic for online businesses who think they can still bully their way to better rankings by building links through spammy techniques. Better rankings, means better brand building and smarter marketing. In many cases this means more time and more money, but when done correctly the ROI should be there. Content strategy (see how we can help you with your content strategy) has become more important, and that includes content on your site as well as content you are using on third-party sites. Content on your own site needs to answer questions your potential customers are asking and provide thoughtful answers. This proves you are an industry leader and gives them confidence in your company. Content is good, but strategic content that draws in visitors is what is truly...

How to Tell if Google Has Penalized Your Site

We like to answer SEO questions from our readers and potential clients. This one came in and I thought it might be helpful for site owners who aren’t sure if they have been penalized by Google. How Do I Know if Google Has Penalized My Site? Not all penalties are the same. Some are manual penalties and these are usually very simple to deduce. Log in to your Webmaster Tools in your Google account and check your messages. If you do have a manual penalty you will see a message stating you have a manual action against your site and why. See an example of this manual penalty. The other type of penalty is an algorithmic penalty. Algorithmic penalties can be spotted by SEO professionals such as ourselves. But there are some things to check to help you find out (or give us a call 804-741-6776): If your website is not ranking for your company name or brand name. This is usually the first thing to check and if you don’t find your site ranking for this information it is almost a certainty you have a penalty. You see most or all of your search result rankings moving from page to page two or three or further. No first page rankings is a bad sign, especially if you have them at one time. If your site’s PageRank has dropped. Google rarely updates PR holistically any more, but they will drop PR on a penalized site out of the blue. Take a look and see what your site’s PR is. If it is a zero or a one you may...

How Do We Find the Right Keywords for Our Clients?

If you are reading this blog post, you probably already understand the concept and importance of keywords and the research that goes into finding the right keywords to bring customers to your site. Choosing the correct keyword phrases (not just keywords) can mean the difference between your site being a success or failing quickly. The choices you make when choosing your keyword phrases should take the following into account: what your customers are looking for (be careful not to simply choose industry terms your customers may not know) which pages you want them to find (inserting keywords on important pages, not just the home page) what is the competitive nature of the keywords you are choosing (no point in trying to rank for keyword phrases that are out of your reach) ROI is king at Big Oak so we want to choose keywords that bring in the best return on your investment. This means that we don’t always target the most popular keyword phrases; we target the keyword phrases that will bring the most traffic that converts to sales. Longer phrases can be much easier to rank for and usually bring in a more focused buyer, not someone merely kicking the tires. How do we find the keywords? What tools do we use for keyword research? At Big Oak we use a variety of tools for choosing the best keyword phrases for our clients: Google AdWords Keyword Planner The defacto keyword research tool for us and probably all SEO companies. We use it for both SEO keyword research and AdWords (PPC) research. If you take a look you will...

Help! My Site Has Been Banned By Google!

“Why has Google banned my website?” As an SEO company this is one question we get very often. There are few bigger problems for an Internet business or search engine marketer than to find that their website has disappeared from Google’s search rankings. Sometimes their website doesn’t even rank for their own web site’s name. How did this happen? Read below to find out some of the reasons why a site may have been banned from Google and what to do to get back in the rankings. Usually there is no warning for being banned or penalized by Google except for the steady drop of sales and visitors to your site. Many site owners and search engine optimization firms are left with little to no idea why they were removed and can be left scratching their heads as to how to get back in. While there are many reasons why a site has been banned, here are a few of the more common reasons. If your site has been banned contact your SEO company or give Big Oak a call at 804-741-6776 to help you get back on the right track to high Google rankings. You can see a case study here that shows a successful site reinclusion for a recent client. We offer a Google penalty removal service that can help get your site back in the search results. 1. Robots and Meta Tags The first and simplest solution many be that your robot.txt file has been changed to prevent search engines from entering your site. Or your meta tags could be directing the search engine robots to...

6 Articles Providing Advice for SEO Newbies and Gurus

This list was compiled by Eric Ward so you know it has to be good. Mr. Ward gives solid advice for anyone website looking to increase traffic through better SEO efforts that won’t come back to haunt you in the future. 1. Down With Toolbar PageRank And Up With… What? http://searchengineland.com/down-with-toolbar-pagerank-and-up-with-what-175886 by Julie Joyce There are quality alternative metrics to PageRank, such as the various ones used by Majestic, Ahrefs, Open Site Explorer and Link Research Tools. Let’s look at how these metrics are calculated, taking it from the source. After that, we’ll see how the numbers stack up across a few different sites. 2. 315 Businesses Boost Rankings by Optimizing Their Google+ Local Pages [Study] http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2305421/315-Businesses-Boost-Rankings-by-Optimizing-Their-Google-Local-Pages-Study by Jon Schepke Ripe opportunity still exists to boost local visibility with some focused SEO efforts. Consider the five primary optimization techniques employed by the businesses in this study and the impact the effort delivered on local visibility. 3. How Google+ Shut Me Down for Impersonating Myself http://inklingmedia.net/2013/11/14/google-shut-impersonating/#ixzz2l7m42uQ2 by Ken Mueller Despite having a YouTube channel (owned by Google) under my own name for years, and a Gmail account, along with other Google properties, I’ve been shut down by Google+ because my “profile impersonates someone.” So, I have my picture and my name, and I’m impersonating someone? Myself perhaps? 4.  Are all comments with links spam? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNDRlVSWTRY Video by Matt Cutts 5. How Google Might Use the Context of Links to Identify Link Spam http://www.seobythesea.com/2013/11/google-context-of-links-identify-link-spam By Bill Slawski In 2004, Google filed for a patent that describes how the search engine might pay more attention to the context of a link, such...