WordPress Redirect Plugin

redirect plugin

A redirect plugin can be really useful if you have re-built a site, are re-organising your site or have shifted from a HTML platform to a CMS.

I discovered today that an old link (a friend had kindly provided for me) actually pointed to a non-active page. This was because the link had ‘index.htm’ as part of the URL. The original site was built using Dreamweaver WYSIWYG which turns pages into HTML, so the link was valid until I switched to WordPress. The solution was simple and only took a few minutes, so I thought I’d quickly share it with you.

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Website Spider Simulator tool

spider

Some content and links visible to your visitors on a web page may not actually be visible to the Search Engines, eg. Flash based content etc.. Part of your SEO research should include tools that will allow you to check that spiders see what they are supposed to see. I recently came across a tool which simulates a Search Engine by displaying the contents of a webpage exactly how a Search Engine spider would see it. It also displays the hyperlinks that will be followed (crawled) by a Search Engine when it visits the particular web page along with meta tags and description.

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Social Media

facebook

Social media is a great way to promote businesses and engage with your clientèle or audience. That doesn’t mean that ‘Facebook’ is for every business, so take a look at what ‘Twitter’ and ‘LinkedIn’ can offer for your business.

My general rule of thumb is that face-to-face public dealing companies should use Facebook firstly and then Twitter secondly. Business-to-business companies should (I think) use LinkedIn and/or Twitter depending on their resources. Resources are important because Twitter is more demanding of your time in my opinion. It’s not really OK to occasionally take to Twitter, you should really be able to almost constantly monitor it, and be prepared to engage daily. Facebook is fine for occasional engagement and I have seen LinkedIn used as both fairly passive, and also very vigorously when it comes to updates etc..

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Directories and services

review

I mentioned before that I use ‘Hot Frog’ directory, and I get quite a bit of local business through it although I am not set up primarily for local users on my ‘cassette2cd‘ website.

I am also on ‘FreeIndex‘ for the same cassette to CD service, and as well as being a free directory listing (no doubt ‘no-follow‘ – see my previous post) FreeIndex also has a section where clients can leave a review. Now it’s unlikely that your clients will make a bee-line for this, but it is something you can promote to your clients through a badge-link on your site or providing a link in emails etc..

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‘do follow’ ‘no follow’

These are expressions that relate to links between websites, whether they are linking to your site from an external site, or relating to a link within your site going to a third party. For instance, you may want to link to a client, or a supplier may want to link to you.

The ‘follow’ status is used by indexing ‘bots’ (Google mini-programs that ‘spider’ the internet looking for links between sites) as an indication of whether any ‘kudos’ form the link should be shared from the source to the target. For instance a ‘do-follow’ link from a renowned site can be beneficial in terms of the way your site is viewed by a search engine. In most cases, links are ‘no-follow’ because Google regards the overuse of ‘do-follow’ links as generally a negative indication possibly flagging up a ‘link-farm’ trying to ‘game’ the indexing process.

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Web directories

Although most generic web directories only offer ‘no-follow’ links (especially free submission web directories), I have found that trade directories which are geared towards ‘locality’ of the business has bought in a fair proportion of business since I started using them. I use one called ‘Hotfrog‘, I believe the original Hotfrog is based in Australia, but it now has a worldwide presence.

Services like Hotfrog allow you to place a business profile on-line, list your services, show some photos and all for free (although of course there is a ‘paid-for’ version which gives you a higher profile). Naturally, many domains will be registered with DMOZ open directory as a minimum, but there are a bunch of free directory services out there which may be a good fit for your site.

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