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Fancy SEO tactics don’t mean SQUAT when the client ERASES HTML title tags in favor of "Welcome to Our New Site." Andrew Shotland offers tips to avoid such nightmares with good client communication and planning.
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from andrewsho 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 2

Leave it to Marty to add the fabulous NY Post sphinn headline.  This post is entitled "#1 Search Engine Ranking Factor: SEO QA" and if your client ever has called you in the middle of the night in a panic wondering why they have lost 50% of their traffic, this post is for you.

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from aimClear 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Andrew, It’s a TRUE story that happend to aimclear THIS week. That’s why I Sphunn your post!.m

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from g1smd 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Cool. The process you describe is what I have always called a "URL Audit".  That’s  a complete analysis of the URL footprint of a site that is exposed for indexing.Using Xenu LinkSleuth is a good first step in that task. It can show links with no anchor text - something I see on very many sites developed in dreamweaver (deleting a link doesn’t actually delete the link, only the anchor text), and inform about internal links pointing to non-canonical URLs and then hitting a redirect. It can find many other things too. I always test the 404 response for various URLs within a site, and ensure that 301 redirects really are returning the 301 status code.  I often see a 302 instead, and that can be a disaster too.What about "index.html" type links?  Do they redirect to "/"?What about URLs with parameters?  Are the parameters always in the same order?What about the response if a port number is added to the request? Does the system always strip out unecessary parameters?Are bots never shown session IDs?Are bots stopped from getting to URLs that only show content to logged-in users (and therefore dissuaded from indexing thousands of "you are not logged in"  error pages)?  There are many ways to harm a site before it has even been put online. It is good to be sure that you have dealt with all of them right up front.

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from aimClear 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 2

..and BTW we found and fixed the issue and the traffic is allready coming back. THAT’S why companies need SEM firms!!!

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from andrewsho 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 2

Good stuff g1

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from zacharyfox 3719 Days ago #
Votes: 3

@aimClearGood post, but I’m more interested in your story. You need to save those headlines.

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from ljs4iu 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 2

Like all good writing (Andrew’s Post) it’s what it means to each reader personally (in this case aimClear) that makes for good journalism! LOL

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from andrewsho 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 2

Zachary,Sorry about the bait and switch - although I love Marty’s headline I am glad it’s not my client that’s down $9MM.  :)A

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from aimClear 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 1

At the risk of "protesting too much" Andrew...there is NO bait and switch: From the Page:"but for some reason whenever there is SEO involved it gets even harder, usually because the team has not adopted SEO as a part of its everyday process. Screwing up QA on SEO features can mean losing a lot if not all of your traffic in the flick of a switch."To quote Lyndon (Master Headline Writer of All Time) "it really got me thinking"about the difficulty of making sure that everything that goes out he door correct when the "team" includes a client that is not used to working with an SEM firm.BTW it WOULD have been 9 million based on the losses over the last 7 days. aimClear noticed the issue and went "what the heck is going on." All our page titles and meta descriptions were GONE, the victim of an internal design team that uplodaded "new content" without the work we did. Andrew’s post spoke to the issue"From the post:"The Local SEO Guide SEO QA ChecklistThe following items should be tested before every new release:2. For static pages does each page have a unique Title, Meta Description and Meta Keywords tag?The title and description is all about your post resonating with me... :) I am just born to share related anecdotes!

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from andrewsho 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 2

No busting of chops intended Marty! :)

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from aimClear 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 1

...none taken babe... :)

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from IncrediBILL 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Side note: Very few QA people put QA in their job title anymore because you really can’t assure anything. It’s usually QE (Quality Engineering) these days. I wouldn’t normally know this except my wife was the Director of QE for a company that built enterprise search software.

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from Gamermk 3718 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I’m sorry, but I really don’t understand how the heading relates to the article at all.

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from cvos 3716 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I would love to see a top ten post: What Clients Did To Shoot Themselves In The Foot

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from lisamelvin 3716 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I’ll submit one for that top ten list:Not too long ago we noticed a client who had achieved solid rankings slipping a bit in the SERPs. Looking closely, we noticed that another URL they owned was now a live site on the same server which, of course, was an exact duplicate of the site they already had up and ranking. I think what made it so frustrating on our end is that we pride ourselves on our due diligence during the exploration and discovery phases and 1) they’d informed us that they owned that 2nd domain simply to keep anyone else from owning it and 2) they’d decided not to do anything with it and had assured us that they’d be sure to redirect it to the primary URL or contact us for advice based on their intentions if they changed their minds.After a deep breath and a few walks around the office we had only loving words of advice for our client to help mitigate the damages after they shot themselves in the foot.

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