Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tips and trick for 2019

DESIGNA was founded by Andrew Rulnick in 2013. Since starting our business we have documented some of our most important Search Engine Optimization (SEO) finding and shared them with the general public. Our aim is to take all the mystery out of SEO and make it easy enough that your mother could do it! DESIGNA provides world-class marketing & SEO management services for businesses in virtually every industry.

We have conducted extensive research and collected data for some of the following types of businesses: professional services such as lawyers or law offices, legal services, professional cleaners, realtors or real estate brokerages, accountants or CPA, home improvement companies, technology consulting, and consumer packaged goods ranging from nutrition supplements to virtually every product sold online or on store shelves. Our SEO strategies and SEO tips range from intermediate skill level, up to advanced best practices. DESIGNA provides ongoing one on one support, consultation and training to small businesses and Fortune 500’s, we work on behalf of hundreds of marketing agencies and with dozens of leading channel partners to fulfill their SEO needs. Many of our findings are documented here for your reading pleasure.

PageSpeed Insights Analysis and Test Results
Pro Tips

PageSpeed Matters

Welcome to my next entry on the basics of SEO. These are the industry inside tips and tricks that will take your organic rank to the next level! Follow my blog and get the basics, which in my opinion are the most important factors when working to improve your position in the search engine results page (SERP). In this lesson we’re going to the heart of your pages, it’s code. Now Google had a hosted service that was available for the public to use called Google PageSpeed, but that PageSpeed Service hosted by Google is being discontinued and now you need to work with an engineer, hosting company or CDN that will continue to work with this product. Thankfully I’ve been working with this service for the past three years, perfecting how our customers can benefit from the fantastic code advancements that PageSpeed provides at runtime. The long and short of this SEO basic lesson is this, your code and how you program matters. The way your server operates and delivers content will influence how your website ranks organically. It’s becoming a more important part of search engine optimization every year. Businesses used to be able to run on super inexpensive/cheap hosting plans for $4 or $6 a month but these plans has limitations and Google can tell if your host is limiting the number of concurrent connections to pages or databases. Google can also determine how fast your pages load due to coding, render blocking issues or your overall server

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Don't clone your content
Pro Tips

Avoid Duplicate Content

This week, in part two of ten in my lessons on the basics of SEO, we’re going to review the problems of repetitive or duplicate content and ways to avoid this problem. Let’s face it, it’s never easy to come up with new ideas! If you find yourself grasping at straws it’s really easy to accidentally get caught in a loop and repeat ideas or content. It’s fine if there’s an occasional overlap but you can’t continue to write about the same thing over and over without risk of an automated or manual penalty. So how do you avoid the pitfall of duplicate content? My advice is to review what’s popular in your Google Webmaster Tools report. Identify keywords that have high impression but lower position and consider creating a series around that topic. Another trick I like to use is to review your previous posts and pages to identify ideas that you may not have had enough time or room in your posts to include. Another problem we all run into now and again is trying to incorporate older ideas of content into new posts. In my opinion this is a bad idea because your regular readers (and therefore search engines) are likely to pick up on this trend. It’s going to turn off your audience and make them not want to continue reading articles, especially if they are intended to be part of a series or additional information on a particular topic. For example, in this series on SEO basics I’m

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Google SEO Panda 4.0
Pro Tips

Panda 4.0 and SEO

Are you ready for this? Panda 4.0 released as announced by @mattcutts on May 20th 2014. “Google is rolling out our Panda 4.0 update starting today.” — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) May 20, 2014 What does this mean for the world of SEO?  Well does Matt Cutts gives us a good hint a few days before the update? “Encrypt all the things! http://t.co/YPq3D1KySrpic.twitter.com/0TUojWAObe” — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) May 19, 2014 Possibly.  I’ve been explaining to people for almost over a decade that I strongly believe Google looks at your page speed, server speed and server security.  I strongly believed this when I started working at Go Daddy.  I still believe (and think that this validates) by larger suspicion that Google has been looking at this as a factor of SEO rankings algorithms.  I also believe that Google applies the laws of physics to determine rank algorithms but most SEO companies and consultants I speak to find that too “absurd” to be true.  I believe that OpenSSL is a part of the factor that’s been running for almost a decade but not many believed that theory.  I’ve got many more ideas about what Google’s new principles are and how they will shape the way we think of SEO for a company or your business. Local SEO is changing, we’re using more Rich Snippets.  Rich Snippets are tiny pieces of more information (including local business address, phone numbers, authors, product, prices and descriptions) that are submitted to Google regularly.  I believe that this is

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build natural backlinks
Pro Tips

What is SEO in 2017? Get Free SEO Tips and Advice!

This article was originally written by me in 2014. I’m in the process of updating to meet the current standards and best practices in 2017. In short, I believe many of the best practices remain the same, with the addition of compute, web service resource utilization, and as always good content to draw your audiences, then retain them with new, relevant and important information about the topics they are searching for. I’m also a big believer that media is still, and always will be, an important part of SEO. You overall effort, quality, and activity are still essential. The following is an edited version of my article of SEO tips and advice from 2014: SEO in 2017 is the year a lot is changing, in my honest opinion.  I keep getting asked questions repeatedly about backlinks, I can assure you that if any SEO has heavy emphasis on backlinks they are clearly steering you in the wrong direction.  Why?  One example is my blog.  It has virtually little to no backlinks and the places I do have little to no PR to pass on; yet I still manage to rank incredibly well, on the first page of Google for competitive search terms.  I had someone recently tell me that “backlinks 2017” wasn’t competitive.  Okay, really?  Never assume you know more than the next guy.  Don’t assume that a lower volume search term isn’t more valuable compared to a broad, higher search term with a significantly reduced conversion rate. As is the

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SEO Title and Description Meta Tags
Pro Tips

10 TIPS FOR SEO IN 2014 #10 – Titles & Description Meta Tags

Meta tags are often thought to be a thing of the past.  Not so much really, title and description meta tags are probably more important than ever before!  Clickthrough rate (CTR) is important for increasing your organic position as it’s an indication of relevance and quality (just like AdWords CTR will influence your Quality Score).  A higher CTR on an organic listing will help to increase and maintain position on the page.  Title and descriptions meta tags are more important than they were before because this will influence your listings CTR.   If your title is a close or exact match to what a user searches, then the probably of receiving the click had been proven to increase exponentially.  Your title tag influences the blue link of your organic listing and the description appears below the title tag in black text.  The description should typically be a compelling summary of the pages content.  It’s important that your description and title are closely related to the topic of the page but also interesting, putting a unique description will increase interest and in turn the probability that someone will want to visit your website over all the others that are listed in the search results.  If you’re not sure how to write a compelling description, I advise that you study other popular listings.  Whatever you do though, don’t copy another websites description or title.  Otherwise, you run the risk of getting penalized – being removed or having position change for the worse.

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build natural backlinks
Pro Tips

10 TIPS FOR SEO IN 2014 #9 – Learn About Building Natural Backlinks

Building natural backlinks is important because it’s what causes PageRank to flow freely from one page to the next.  It’s important that Google+, Facebook, twitter and Linkedin backlink to your company’s website.  All roads should lead back to your business, try to make it personal.  Balance personal profile images with strong branding in the background.  Do not let your branding replace your personal profile pictures, they should still be present and branding is secondary in the background.  Don’t stuff links all over the web trying to pass PageRank and “link juice”.  This is a poor SEO tactic and frankly I find it to not only be a ludicrous gimmick but a complete insult to what search engine optimization (SEO) is really about.  I consider link builders to fall within “blackhat SEO” territory.  Avoid people boasting massive link building strategies like the plague.  This isn’t how you should be increasing your position on the search engine results for popular keywords and phrases.  Trust me, I do not go on massive link building escapades and I rank higher on search engines and make it to the first page of Google search results plenty.  It is not, I repeat, not about building massive quantities of links from other websites.  You need to be focused on your standard set of links from other website properties you manage, such as social media and standard directory websites like Yelp, but under no circumstance should you go out and buy our create tons of unnatural links.  Guess what’s

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SEO Tips in 2014 - Blog Frequently Using WordPress
Pro Tips

10 TIPS FOR SEO IN 2014 #8 – Blog With Frequency.

If you’re not blogging at least once every two weeks, (in a Brooklyn accent) forget about it…  The frequency and quality of your blog updates still matters, you can see benefits and gains when you blog within one to two days – if you don’t then you’re doing something incorrectly.  You’re missing a very important step in the SEO process.  There’s a lot that goes into a good blog, even more that goes into planning, writing, editing and scheduling your content.  There’s no fast and easy way to manage this process besides either investing the time and doing it yourself or hiring a company to do this work for you.  If you hire a company, make sure they staff writers in the USA.  Google knows the differences in writing styles from one country to another, not to mention literary proficiency.  It’s not to say you couldn’t outsource overseas but we don’t because we’ve found that high quality of the writing is what help get companies to the first page of Google.  We typically employ Masters of English and Journalism Majors, this ensures the absolute best in quality, completely original content and very dedicated blog writers (bloggers). Blogging shouldn’t be a hobby if you’re trying to rank on the first page of Google.  This should be something your planning in advance and creating at least a blog post once a week if you’re not in a super competitive industry or market.  If you are then you’re going to have to produce two

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How You Submit a Sitemap in Google Webmaster Tools (top right)
Pro Tips

10 TIPS FOR SEO IN 2014 #7 – Optimize and Submit Your Sitemap

If you’re not creating sitemap and submitting using Google Webmaster Tools, good luck!  This is a simple way to ensure that your most important pages have a better chance of ranking on Google and counting toward your overall authorship ranking.  See more on authorship profiles in tip #4. There’s a lot of really easy ways to build and optimize your sitemap, my favorite way is to use WordPress and the Yoast SEO plugin.  It automatically builds an effective, well structured sitemap and includes images which I believe it a best practice.  You can build a sitemap manually but it’s a very time consuming process.  Many site building and content management tools such as WordPress have easy to use plugins.  After you optimize your sitemap you need to login to your Google Webmaster Tools and submit it for index.  It generally takes 24 to 48 before you can get a good indication on how content is going to influence your rank and if you’re going to make it to the first page of Google or not.

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Edit Webmaster Tools Settings in Google Analytics
Pro Tips

10 Tips for SEO in 2014 #6 – Link Google Webmaster Tools to Google Analytics.

This helps to determine what content drives impressions, traffic and position higher.  It makes it easier to determine when CTR is low, indicating that you may need to work on your titles and descriptions.  There’s a lot of very interesting data that can be obtained by doing this, you can see position change over time, there’s also a ton of data that pertains to segmenting position change by various types of content you’re publishing.  It’s really important you complete this step and it’s also very easy to do. Step #1 – Assuming you have used the same email to setup Google Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics, sign in to your Google Analytics account. Step #2 – Click into the website profile and property you will be linking Google Webmaster Tools to. Step #3 – In the top right, click admin.  Then under the “PROPERTY” (middle) column, select “Property Settings”. Step #4 – Scroll to the bottom of your Property Settings and you will find a section called “Webmaster Tools Settings” select “Edit”. Step by Step Gallery to Help You Link Google AdWords and Analytics Together: You will be able to choose your Google Webmaster Tools from the list, if it’s grey or not appearing there’s something wrong with how you have configured your Google Analytics or Webmaster Tools settings and you should call our team for help at (480) 277-3675.

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Social Media Following
Pro Tips

10 TIPS FOR SEO IN 2014 #5 – Build #SocialMedia Following

This is going to be the recurring theme in 2014 –  “personalized search” is influenced by the people you and other people in your circles follow.  Building a genuine social media following online isn’t easy, I find that content typically has to be 10% about your company, product or services and the remaining 90% to be unrelated.  Remember that most people on social media are there to connect with friends and for entertainment, so if you think shoving advertisements in their face will build your following then you’re fighting a losing battle. If you’re trying to take more than you give, you’re going to fail.  If you also don’t follow our other tips pertaining to social media, engagement and content then you’re wasting your time because people wont be able to identify value in your content very easily.  It’s less likely they will want to follow you, share your content or any engagement that would be an indication or signal of value to the major search engines.  Bing is personalizing search using facebook following and Google personalized search results using twitter and Google+ as far as I can tell.  When your follower(s) search content closely related to a topic you have posted about, it’s very likely they are going to see the content you’ve posted related to their search on the first page of Google search results. To build a following you can purchase paid marketing, use organic methods of engagement, thank people for sharing content and typically I find

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Setup Author Profile in WordPress for SEO
Pro Tips

10 Tips for SEO in 2014 #4 – Setup Author Profiles

If someone follows you, it’s much more probably that they are going to see content that has your authorship profile associated with it.  It’s a factor of new personalized search results by Google. WordPress and Blogger are excellent ways to do this easily.  From WordPress admin, you login into your admin panel, then go to the “Users” section.  Select “Your Profile”  and then complete the “About Yourself” section.   It also helps a lot if you’re using Jetpack Publicize, it breaks sometimes but overall it’s a very useful and easy to use tool to link your WordPress with social media websites like Linkedin, Twitter, facebook and Google+.  Gravatar can be a benefit to keep profiles uniform. Author profiles can also be made manually by using authorship tags but I suggest avoiding these whenever possible because standards are bound to change eventually and it would be a pain to have to update all your web properties to match or use the latest standards of authorship tags and information. Quick Instructions: Login to WordPress admin area. Under “Users” Select “Your Profile” Complete the “About Yourself” section. Use Jetpack Publicize to link your social media. Make sure you have setup your Google+ profile with the same email as you use on WordPress then verify authorship on Google. Author profiles are a very good way to build reputation with followers and search engines.  They are becoming more important in the PageRank algorithm and search engine optimization (SEO) process.  I highly recommend you start settings

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Engage with your followers on social media.
Pro Tips

10 Tips for SEO in 2014 #3 – Engage With Followers

Social media on Twitter, facebook and Google+ isn’t just about building following, it’s about meaningful conversations!  Yes following is important, but if you’re not connecting one to one and still trying to connect one to many then you’re doing it wrong in my opinion.  Thank people for following you whenever possible, let them know you appreciate it and engage with fans of your work.  You would be surprised how a little of this goes a long way.  I try to always reply to posts or comments within 24 to 48 hours.  Sometimes a couple may fall through the crack but it’s not the end of the world.  Leave more meaningful comments on other blogs, posts and reply to other comment threads.  They don’t always even have to relate to your industry, remember Go Daddy built a massive customer base focusing on fans of NASCAR.  You don’t always have to try to shove your brand into relevant conversation, try to be social.  People are using social media to connect with friends or family and for entertainment!  I try to follow a ten to one rule when using social media, for every 10 posts one of those will be about our DESIGNA or our services. Your engagement and relevant contribution may have an impact on your ranking.  We know that when a person follows you on Google+ it does affect their personalized search results and as long as you’re using authorship profiles, you’re more likely to have your content, blog posts or

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Define a Value to Your Readers
Pro Tips

10 Tips for SEO in 2014 #2 – Provide Value

Are you just publishing articles in hopes that you will rank on the first page of Google or are you actually publishing useful information that provide greater value to your visitors? If content provides little to no benefit to your reader, the odds of them considering useful, sharing it or following you is slim to none. It’s better to give too much than not enough.  It’s important to try sharing images, video and links to other useful information.  If you’re not building backlinks using anchor text then you’re clearly doing something wrong.  Careful not to pass too much PageRank by linking to too many external websites.  It’s okay to do once in a while, especially if the content is relevant and/or about your company but too much and you may do more harm than good.  My general rule of thumb is one external link for every ten internal links.  This is a good ratio to maintain the majority of the PageRank acquired through natural flow without coming off as useless spam.  From my experience, if you’re writing and creating original content about subjects you love, you’re ten times more likely to rank on Google.

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Using Google Webmaster Tools - Position Change Reports
Pro Tips

10 Tips for SEO in 2014 #1 – Measure Success

Are you measuring your position change using the percent change reports in Google Webmaster Tools? If not you’re missing the boat, big time! Try and use these to show clients that your work is providing value, if you’re still struggling at increasing position there may be on-site factors or poor link building strategies (backlinks) being used that are inhibiting you from getting that highly coveted, first page ranking.  Hitting the first page of Google isn’t easy, but with careful planning and a lot of hard work it can be achieved. If all else has failed, give our search engine optimization (SEO) services a try!  Our rates are incredibly reasonable, starting at just $280/mo.  We give our clients exceptional value and work hard to keep your business.  Call (480) 277-3675 and ask for Andrew!

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What is SEO? Learn More With DESIGNA.

People ask us all the time, “What is SEO?”  SEO stands for search engine optimization and its the process of organizing your website and it’s content so that it’s more accessible by people and major search engines,such as Google.  The process typically involves writing specific content about a subject (such as search engine optimization) that is commonly searched for by users on the web.  Writing compelling content is paramount as ranking depends partially on the quality of the writing. Then we go through the process of creating your meta tags (title, description and keyword) to help search engines to easily identify what your content is about.  It’s important because this influences the title and descriptions that display in the search results when you rank in the search results.  Another important and primary factor are backlinks, which are anchor text (hyperlinked) from other authoritative sources on the internet crediting your page or articles.   Backlinks need to be highly focused on quality and not quantity.  We would personally take one or two high quality links over a hundred poorly constructed spam links that could get you banned from search engines altogether.  When you anchor text and build backlinks they should be compelling, thought-provoking or informative in nature and be very highly targeted so there’s a strong relevance between the page you’re linking from back to your website, page or blog article.  When you build backlinks you’re passing PageRank (named after Google Co-founder, Larry Page).  PageRank is a quality score that Google assigns

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Google Webmaster Tools Search Queries Report
Pro Tips

SEO Tip #2 – SEO Queries and Landing Page Reports (#SEO, #keyword, #content, #reports).

I’ve always subscribed to the theory that “you can’t improve a metric unless you measure it” my entire life but never really recognized that until the philosophy had been drilled into me by Bob Parsons and Go Daddy’s Management through the almost four years spent working at Go Daddy.  Now, having spent two years working for Teletech (working for their client Google),  I have to say it’s something that has stuck with me now in my positions as Supervisor, Manager, now Business Owner and lead Marketing Analyst for DESIGNA’s customers. I play double, triple duty a lot in my line of work but I love it!   Not only  am I measuring how we’re working individually and as a company but also in the SEO and AdWords results we get for our customers!  It’s thrilling to see true, verifiable success in Google AdWords, Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools!  You need to know whether or not your company is on the first page of Google, what keywords you’re there for and what their average position is and when you’re not there you need to understand why. This brings me to my second SEO Tip.  One of the factors of success is to measure your keywords (Search Queries) average position and their change as it relates to specific keywords and content (Search Queries and Landing page) reports.  Wow.  What does that even mean? What it means is your position on the page will almost constantly change.  Sometimes literally within a day.  The

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DESIGNA for SEO Services and Google PageRank Experts
Pro Tips

SEO Tip Number One – Nobody’s Perfect #Imperfect #SEO

It’s come to our attention from some of DESIGNA’s adoring competitors (if you would even call them that) commented that we don’t rank PageRank on 1) highly competitive terms and 2) our brand name “DESIGNA”.  So we sat down and decided it was time to write a series of tips to help you. While select terms are important for our business and we would love to rank for those today, we are only in our third month of business!  What’s even more exciting is that we’re already getting impression share for some very competitive keywords related to our services.  DESIGNA’s team is always looking for ways to make improvements to both its own and client’s PageRank – for higher position on Google’s search results and local search listings. So that brings us to our first SEO Tip in a long series in the making.  Nobody’s perfect!  That’s where “Search Engine Optimization” comes from!  It’s about constantly identifying flaws in your design, code, content and/or backlink strategy. Understand and accept that nobody’s website, landing page or blog are perfect.  That’s precisely what  keeps SEO interesting!  There’s always room for improvements. SEO Tip #1 summary – Nobody’s Perfect: Stop trying to have everything perfect it’s virtually impossible. Continue to develop new and original content with some regularity. Google PageRank is constantly changing – it’s a long ride! Create a sitemap file and submit to Google using Google Webmaster Tools.  I typically update our sitemap and resubmit at least once a month. The quality

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search engine optimize (SEO) "to infinity and beyond".
Pro Tips

SEO to Infinity and Beyond!

DESIGNA hit a tipping point today in our massive overhaul of our website’s search engine optimization (SEO) and we’re only tipping in “to infinity and beyond”.  Even after an exhaustive list of completely obsessive compulsive overhauls (including but not limited to) The layout of our content and how it displays (on both mobile and desktop devices). Restructuring our meta tags (title, description and keyword). Setting up robot.txt and sitemap.xml on our website, shopping cart and blog. Rebuilding anchors and building new back links. Integrating social media and syndication opportunities. Beginning to add structured data on both our website and blog. And we are still only just getting started.  It’s an everyday process, every little minute detail makes a difference in how you rank on search engines like Google, bing and Yahoo! It’s all never-ending…  That’s why our philosophy isn’t just to search engine optimize but borderline obsession.  When you think you’ve got your content dialed in, analyze to find new ways of making improvements to increase your PageRank.  I guarantee that even some of the best companies in search engine optimization miss steps and have to double back to optimize.  Search engine optimization isn’t that you get it right on the first try, it’s about going back and making improvements over and over “to infinity and beyond”!  Get involved on forums, start blogging using WordPress, become more social with your brand and create content that’s more meaningful to your website visitors. Go back through your website with a fine tooth

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Andrew Rulnick

Andrew Rulnick

"I'm Andrew Rulnick, the Founder and CEO of DESIGNA. I worked four years for Go Daddy then two and a half years at TeleTech for Google! I've consulted for other companies like Reach Local, Gannett and have over ten years of SEO/SEM, AdWords, and Analytics experience. My education and experiences are in business, marketing, and management so I decided to create DESIGNA. A company geared towards solving all your SEO / SEM, analytics and design service challenges. We deal in the management of all the services and products needed to produce a successful marketing campaign(s) that consistently produces top dollar returns on ad spend. Nobody does it better than DESIGNA, many have tried only to realize they aren't prepared to service the middle market, your growing business! You want to expand with highly effective, targeted digital advertising or search engine and optimization? You've come to the right place! We're the best at advertising your business to make it grow, in the world. We've been a Google Partner since 2013. You can't beat you prices, products, or service, period!I work on all of our customers projects personally, I'm very responsive and you're welcome to call me with questions or to enquire about our services. Many of my peers and colleagues recognize me as an expert in SEO and Analytics, I just love working with Google products! It's honestly been a pleasure watching the industry grow and evolve as it has over the last decade. Find me on Google+ or follow me on twitter. Hope to hear from you soon!"