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Great Content, Yet All Is Not Well


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Indeed, content is king, but like the stock market it has its highs and lows. I've been told that stocks on average return 12% but that's over the long haul - short term is high potential at high risk. If you use an SEO shortcut then you are facing the same risks ... if they change the search engine (SE) programming the bottom may drop out on you. Any good SEO expert will tell you that patience is a requirement to do well over time.


Now, a couple of observations that I hope will help.


1. You have your site name in the keywords. Unless "Ant & Sons" is well known and someone will be searching for it by name this will not help you and may hurt.


2. Stocks/investing is a pretty competitive area - it will take a LOT of work to rank well.


3. Repeating your keywords won't help either. In "the old days" you had to list "stock, stock market, stocks," etc. Now many of the SE's have intelligent word parsing so this may actually seem like a duplication to them. If you put the most commonly searched for variant of a word then it is likely any relevant search will look ok to the engine.


4. I would put what your site is about in the title... something like: "Stocks, bonds and other investments." or something that tells what you're about. (see next.)


5. At first glance I can't really tell what your site is about. I know it's about investing but it neither draws me in, nor, I suppose, would it draw a search engine. Without using your reasoning abilities, look at the text and see if you can find a theme... to a stupid computer (and a hopefully not-as-stupid me) it is just a bunch of words... you talk about:

surges in demand US debt

baby boomers pension funds

investors Europe

Japan treasuries

bond prices yields


And that's just the first paragraph. You can probably imagine the computer having a hard time pegging this site as whatever it truly is. The copy seems to have been written by an advertising person trying to draw the viewer in to whatever solution it is you have to offer, but for a search engine helping a person find "investment guidance", it has no chance of making the match.


The bottom line is that the person sitting out there that is looking for your services will type in certain words and phrases... you need to find out what they are and use them generously on your site's pages so the engines can see that you are a match for them when they type in that particular phrase/word.


I trust that these comments will help get you inside the head of the search engines a little and see where you can change your site to best meet their and your needs. Above all, have patience - things in the search engine world changes on the palentological timeframe (or so it seems).

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Thanks Rob and Jim for the thorough analysis.



Another question that I am curious about...


Take a look at this page for example:




<title>Trader's Corner: Cramer's "Mad Money" Combines the Craze and Reality of Wall Street</title>

<meta name="keywords" content="James Cramer, Jim Cramer, Mad Money, TheStreet.com, Lightning Round, Valero Energy , Sears Holdings, LSI Logic, Kudlow & Cramer, CNBC">

<meta name="description" content="Ant & Sons is an independent provider of investment commentary, research and news.">



Should my description be changed? Does that have a huge impact on Search engine results?

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It is my understanding that meta data like keywords and descriptions have little bearing in most search engines. I still use them just for the few that may need them. As far as I know, the description is mostly for what is displayed on the search page when you see your link in the search pages. I will let Jim clarify though.

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Rob and Jim really hit the nail on the head. You got a very valuable analysis of your site and some very helpful tips.


I'll add a few more. First, you need some h1 tags. The only heading tags I found on my quick skim of your site was h4.


Second, more important than content is the number and quality of text links pointing back to your site.


Unfortunately, if you get a text link with your site name in it 'Ant And Sons' I bet Google will come to the concusion your site should be about either ants or sons. So, ideally you'd get text links like 'Investment advice', or 'Stock and Bond Trading'.


Many businesses are discovering that a well run blog can help get good links coming your way if you (1) create fantastic content (2) name your articles with SEO and traffic in mind


Good luck.

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Sorry for the delay. I agree completely with what Rob said (oh my gosh, did I say that? :)) about the meta data.


Surefire's right also about the tags being a big help and the text of links back to your site.


Check the older messages here for a start... there are many good older messages in the Website Promotion section here.

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Since you asked... nope.


Let's say your most important keyword phrase is 'investment advice'.


Title: Investment advice - Investments analyzed by Ant and Sons


h1 needs to be on your page high as possible in html and be something like: Investment Advice from Pros


(Keep in mind you can style the h1 to fit the layout of your page. But you're currently using h4... and that's not the best use of your tags)


Currently 'investment' only appears twice on the page. You need it to appear more, whilst striking a balance and not 'spamming' the page with the word. It should appear natural, but you still want the word more than twice, if that's your key word.


Given the url and name of your site, and the fact that your keywords are not present in either, I'd strongly recommend that you'll need to separate all branding strategies and SEO efforts. In other words, you need to target what people are looking for... not who you are. People go to the search engines to find a solution or to do research. Unless your primary keyword phrase is 'Ant and Sons' you need to drop it off of the important tags of your site. Especially the title.


Something that hasn't been mentioned before is the level of difficulty in the niche you've chosen. I imagine there's a LOT of competition for 'investment advice' so if you were my client, I'd do research for you to find some smaller ponds where you could become the 'big fish'. For example, maybe you want to focus on exercising stock options for employees of publicly traded companies. Or tax managed mutual funds. Or investment scams people should be aware of.


If you're not examining the supply/demand of your keyword phrases before making these kinds of weighty decisions then you're making a big mistake. The great thing about the internet is that you could really drill down to something excrutiatingly specific and still be very successful, or more successful.


Now, having said these things, I still say that off page factors are more important than on page factors. If you could only do one exceptionally well and the other exceptional poorly, you'd want to focus on off page factors. Specifically, links back to you with your keyword phrase in it. (Not 'Ant and Sons')

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<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">



<title>Ant & Sons: The Roadmap of Investing</title>

<meta name="keywords" content="PIPE transactions, convertible financing, Pink Sheets, NYSE, Nasdaq, bond markets, bond market, bond, bonds, U.S. debt, stock blog, wall street blog, Analyst Scorecard, Gooogle, Cisco Systems, Deutsche Bank, Analyst Chris Whitmore, James Cramer, Jim Cramer, Mad Money, TheStreet.com">

<meta name="description" content="Ant & Sons is an independent provider of investment commentary, research and news.">


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<h3><b>Independent provider of investment commentary, research and news.</b></h3>



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<h2><a href="http://www.antandsons.com/faceoff/bondmarket">Face Off: The Surging Inflows to Bonds and the Factors Sustaining It</a></h2>

<h3>In the past year, there has been a worldwide surge in demand for United States debt, coming from baby boomers, pension funds, and investors in Europe and Japan. These investors have been buying long-term treasuries that have created a rise in bond prices and have...</h3>


<h2><a href="http://www.antandsons.com/therealdeal/pinksheetpromotion">The Real Deal: Beware of the Pink Sheet Promotion</a></h2>

<h3>Investors, especially small cap traders, are often lured into buying a company's stock in order to live up to the dream of making a quick buck, easily and without pain. To do this, one would have to bypass the higher exchanges such as the NYSE and Nasdaq in order to...</h3>


<h2><a href="http://www.antandsons.com/takesalook/pipetransactions">Takes a Look: Structured PIPE Transactions Take Hold</a></h2>

<h3>To raise money for operations, companies usually must raise it on the open market through privately placed convertible securities that have a floating conversion ratio. This conversion ratio adjusts based on the market price of the company's share price at the time of the conversion...</h3>


<h2><a href="http://www.antandsons.com/traderscorner/jamescramermadmoney">Traders Corner: Cramer's "Mad Money" Highlights Wall Street Craze</a></h2>

<h3>Former Goldman Sachs financial advisor, James Cramer, went on to co-found the well-known TheStreet.com (Nasdaq: TSCM) during the roaring internet decade of the 1990's. From there, Cramer started "Mad Money," one of the most intense, entertaining and smart American...</h3>

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