Gavin Hirst - Wednesday 10th April 2013

Data and the importance of context

I read a really interesting article recently which looked at the importance of providing context with data in which the author, Bruce Ernst, highlighted the recent issues Google have had around the release of some data relating to the number of Americans who potentially had the flu.

Basically, to summarise Bruce’s post, Google created an algorithm based on the number of people searching for information about flu and created something called Google Flu Trends – this compiled a number of good indicators to estimate flu activity. The magazine Nature took exception to this, highlighting that only about half the number of people identified by Google’s Flu Trends actually had the flu. What Nature did was assume that because Google had released this data, they were saying ‘this is the number of people who have flu’ whereas what they were actually saying was ‘this is the number of people who…

Gavin Hirst - Thursday 4th April 2013

Successful link building

In the last post, we talked about the importance of link building and the various factors that search engines look for when ranking the importance and relevance of a link such as global popularity, topic-relevance, anchor text, domain authority and social media. We are now going to look at how you can start to think about building links with external sites and maintain this moving forward.

Link building

There are three main ways of building links with external sites:

Natural – these links are given naturally by other sites that find the information on your site relevant to their customers and deem it important enough to link to. You do not need to do anything with these links other than ensure you provide great content when they get to your site and also ensure that the anchor text that the site is using is keyword rich and relevant to the page on…

Gavin Hirst - Thursday 21st March 2013

The importance of good links

If you want to improve your search ranking and traffic success, you have got to start thinking about link building. Links are like tunnels, connecting sites and pages together, helping people to navigate the world wide web and find the content that is most relevant to them. Links are like a popularity contest; the more you have got pointing to your site, the better your search traffic and like all good popularity contests, if the cool kids are voting for you, then you are likely to be the winner.

How do search engines rank links?

Well, there is no specific evidence to support how search engines rank links, however over time, it becomes clear what factors are important to search engines and these are the things we can start to focus on. First of all there is global popularity. The more popular and trusted a site is, the more value search…