Dumb SEO Questions

Edwin Jonk

Based in the Netherlands, W.E Jonk specialises in on-page SEO for small to medium enterprises (SME). Each week, W.E.Jonk painstakingly records the cue times of our weekly Hangouts On Air so that you can easily find the question you are looking for.

Hi, I am Edwin and a moderator for the best SEO community and the best SEO News community. I mainly do on-page SEO. I run a small business where I help SMB with their online goals. What I do is unburdening small business owners for their online efforts. Besides that I do a lot of freelance work. 

If you want to contact me feel free to ping on Google+: +wejonk

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1. Can everything you need to know about SEO be learned in a day?

I don`t think that SEO can be learned in a day because SEO isn`t a check-list. That is, you cannot make a list and curve things off because SEO is changing every (let say) a year. Besides that, usual an SEO expert (or whatever you want to call it) is specialized in a certain section of SEO. For example some SEO`s come with an outreach angle, others come a data angle (like conversions) still others come with an on-page angle. Which one works best, DEPENDS. In general, we don`t know the code behind Google Search (or other search engines) because they are proprietary and thereby the "know-how" in SEO is by far exact.

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2.  Is it better to have multiple Authors on a single website blog?

About multiple authorship on one page. Google can only handle one authorship at the moment and the advice is to use rel author only once. See the "Reference Link" section in the sidebar.

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3. What would the best practices for SEO optimization of one-page, scrolling websites?

One-page scrolling websites can be quite nice and appealing to the visitors. However I would only use them if the site has one product or one topic. That is, the site only has one specific topic. If you have multiple topics/products on the same page search users landing on that page might not be satisfied because the content the below and they have to scroll down to find the right answer/content for their question/query. This might frustrate people and the might not read/convert, instead they would go back to the search results and try a different result. So you might lose conversions.

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4. How to protect my content?

Since you are complaining about "people stealing" your ebook you might attach your authorship on it. Namely in your PDF you can link to your Google plus profile with the rel=author parameter to it: http://plus.google.com/profile_number?rel=author Alternatively you can use a verified email to send the authorship, where you verify an email which is on the same TLD. Personally I use the URL parameter because I think it is more explicit and (thereby) a clearer signal. But that is an opinion. Furthermore, this wouldn`t prevent any "stealing" of your content, nor will it force people to sign up for the newsletter, but it will help Google to credit you as the original author. And, thereby, the "stealing" might not that bad and can even benefit you in the long run. That is, maybe people convert by visiting your Google Plus profile. And there are probably other benefits too.

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5. Can an optimised landing page do well without good off-site SEO?

Yes it can. That is, if you sell a product/service that is unique and cannot be bought elsewhere or there aren`t any substitutes for your product. Then you will rank for the specific product/service. For example, think about events. If you are the organizer of a particular event in a particular place on a particular time then you will rank for it (assuming that everything is crawlable and optimized). That said (and following the event example), you probably want to reach out to local newspaper which might publish an article on their site or contact the local radio-station for a live interview, which they might publish on their site. All those "normal" marketing things can lead to links or other off-site signals. So if you are doing it right there shouldn`t be a question like "should we do off-site or on-site SEO?". In contrast, you should take every opportunity that is presented to you. Maybe you only do the on-page SEO, but that doesn`t mean the company as a whole should only do on-page SEO. Furthermore you can use the other marketing efforts on your site. For example, when the local newspaper publish an article about the event you can add a "featured on" section on your page/site.

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6. Any thoughts on designing a mobile website? Anyone have experience w/ responsive design?

We regard to mobile sites there are basically three option, namely: * Responsive Design: In short the web site responds to the width of the screen on the same URL. * Dynamic HTML: In short the CMS serves different HTML to mobile users then to desktop users on the same URL. * M Dot Site: In short this is a dedicated site to mobile users, frequently served on a sub-domain "m". All these three options are supported by Google. The dynamic HTML and the m dot site are dedicated to the mobile user and they are frequently better optimized for mobile users. However they are more complicated, in the sense that you probably want/need to sniff user agents and let the server respond the right way, and thereby it might not be the best option for the "average" user. Responsive design on the other hand is a little less complicated in the sense that you edit your CSS/HTML code. Therefore with responsive design you don`t really need to touch the server side, i.e. you leave it over to the client-side. So to me responsive design is a better option, not because it is better (in contrast), because it is a little easier to implement and manage. For more information, please check the "Reference links".

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7. Can we use the schema product tag for a house?

As far as I know schema.org does not have any restrictions. However search engines can impose restrictions. For example when reading Google`s help articles on how to use the "product" markup there is only one restriction: Adult-related products are not supported. If I would guess which product categories would be supported, Google suggest me to look at the taxonomy from Google merchant. In that list (see link in the side bar), houses are not included as a product category (unless you mean a doghouse or birdhouse). Furthermore you can at the product category to your markup without making them visible to your users by using

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8. After removing spammy links, do you see slow improvement in your keywords on the SERPs?

In short, Google crawls the web based on PageRank. This means if you remove links from pages with a low PageRank it might take many months for Googlebot to notice the removal. Furthermore, an algorithm that "penalize" spammy backlinks is Penguin. If you are in, or affected by, that algorithm you need to clean up the links. So report that one should focus or prioritize on exact anchor text. For example if you have build links to rank for red shirts, prioritize on links that have "red shirts" as an anchor text. This algorithm only runs when there is an update. If you are not able to clean up your backlink profile, Google advises you to use the Disavow tool (see link in the sidebar). The last update was in October 2013 and the update before that was April 2013. Therefore, assuming that you where affected by Penguin, it is not a question of weeks, rather it is a question of months. For example a webmaster reported that a recovery from Penguin can take as long as 18 months (see link in the sidebar).

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