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Social Blogging at it’s Finest

2014 August 4
by Kathy Alice
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It’s that time of year again, the #blogsofaugust Google+ challenge!

If you ever wanted to break out of your current blogging rut, try your hand at social blogging on Google+. For a month, make Google+ your primary blogging platform and see what happens. Here’s why I’m taking up the challenge:

  • WebEnso is a blog dedicated to WordPress, SEO and other online marketing topics, I write long form articles that try to fully explore the topic, I often write more than a thousand words per post. With Google+ I can write about anything I want and explore short form blogging. Since I recently digitized my photos, I’m planning to post several this month.
  • You get to meet cool new people.
  • Google+ is better for engagement than any other form of publishing. So if you ever wanted to try your hand at writing and get feedback on whether it resonates, Google+ is a great place to try. I get more engagement on Google+ than I do on Facebook, Twitter and on my blogs.

I’m still planning a few things for WebEnso, a tools resource page and some design adjustments (check out the Google+ badge to the right!). But for this month, most of my writing will be on Google+

If you are interested in joining the fun but aren’t sure where to start read this eweek article from Mike Elgan. On page 2 he says: “Blog about three things: What you experience, what you think and what you make.” That is precisely what I intend to do.

What you need to know about Canada’s new anti spam law

2014 July 23
by Kathy Alice
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Canada Anti Spam Law Canada rolled out a new anti spam law (the CASL) in late June of 2014. The majority of the provisions of the new law are already in effect (as of July 1st), however there is a transitional period to seek “explicit consent” from people you already have a business relationship with, more on that in a moment.

You might be thinking, I don’t live in Canada, so who cares? Well if you run a business that might have Canadian customers, you have to care. If you have gathered email addresses for a list, it’s quite likely that some of your subscribers are Canadian. And while some of them might have a .ca email address, plenty more will have used a free email service such as gmail or hotmail, so you really can’t tell who are the Canadians on your list.

So you might as well assume that you need to comply with CASL, which is more restrictive than the US CAN-SPAM Federal Act.

I’ve spent some time reading through the law text and various articles, and here’s what I’ve learned. Now I’m not an expert, on any law, Canadian or otherwise, but this post should serve as a starting point. If you want to learn more, I would suggest reading Michael Geist’s articles that can be found on the Toronto Star, since he IS an expert on Canadian Internet Law.

Continue reading: What you need to know about Canada’s new anti spam law

When your Child Theme CSS changes don’t work

2014 June 23
by Kathy Alice
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WordPress coding can be frustrating

Why don’t my child theme CSS changes work?

You’ve got your new WordPress theme and love it but you want to tweak it to make it yours. Unless it is a premium theme that supports customizations in the WordPress admin, you need to create a child theme to make the modifications. Why use a child theme? Yes, it can be easier to just hack the theme’s files directly, but if you ever update your theme, all your changes will be overwritten and lost. Which sucks, so use a child theme.

I’ve created many child themes. It’s usually a quick and easy process that takes just a few minutes, especially if you are comfortable with the task of creating a directory on your server.

However recently I ran into issues modifying the CSS of a child theme using the Responsive theme as the parent that took me a long time to resolve. I spent hours looking through posts and the WordPress forums and found no answer, so if you are having the same problem with your child theme read on..

– Continuing reading to solve your child theme CSS problems

5 Awesome Things About Google Webmaster Tools

2014 June 9
by Kathy Alice
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5 Awesome GWMT Tools

My Favorite GWMT Features

Most website owners I meet know about Google Analytics and have set it up (or some other Analytics package) on their website, but not everyone also sets up Google Webmaster Tools (often referred to as GWMT). This is a shame because they are missing out on an important conduit of information from Google about their website. In fact, I’ll go so far and say you are blind if you don’t have GWMT set up for your website.

While Analytics is all about your traffic, GWMT focuses on how your site is crawled and indexed. GWMT is also the place where Google notifies you of any penalties and when malware is detected on your site.

  
Continue reading for My 5 Favorite Things about Google Webmaster Tools

Duplicate Content on Dynamic Websites

2014 May 8
by Kathy Alice
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This post originally appeared in 2012. I’ve updated it to include more approaches on handling duplicate and similar content. May 8, 2014

A while back, I wrote about how Bing had duplicate content in its index even with the use of some tools that should have removed it. Here I cover the topic of duplicate content on dynamic websites. As you probably know, duplicate content is a common technical SEO problem, and it is frightening easy to get it on dynamic websites.

Duplicate Content isn't Cute

Duplicate Content isn’t Cute

First some definitions

  • Dynamic Websites are websites that are generated in all or in part at the time of access. This is often done by assembling information retrieved from a database. WordPress is an example of a dynamic website. All the content is stored in a database and it is presented as needed in multiple forms.
  • Duplicate Content here refers to duplicate content within a site (not duplicate content across domains). In this case, duplicate content is when more than one page has the same content. Or, put another way, there are multiple URLs that lead to the same page. SEOs also classify pages with very similar content as duplicate content, I touch on this briefly below, but it really deserves a separate post.

Read More on why Duplicate Content is bad and what to do about it

Google+ Facing a New Era

2014 April 28
by Kathy Alice
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On April 24, 2014 Vic Gundotra tendered his resignation. Widely regarded as the driving force behind Google+, his leaving raises a lot of questions about the future of Google+. TechCrunch reports in it’s provocatively titled “Google+ Is Walking Dead” article that a significant number of staff is being shuffled away from the project.

Google+ facing new dawn

What’s the future of Google+?

What’s in store for Google+? Is it truly the “Walking Dead?” Read More..

My Top 5 Chrome Extensions for SEO

2014 April 21
by Kathy Alice
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If you do on page SEO work on a regular basis, you need some key tools to give you information about the page you are looking at. Some, but not all, of the information you need can be obtained by viewing the HTML source, but these cool Chrome extensions make a lot easier to review key SEO on page settings such as the title, meta_robots and canonical tags as well as viewing the HTTP response headers from a page and even to diagnose a slow performing page. And if you don’t use Chrome? Not to worry, many of these are available as Firefox add ons as well.

More:5 Key Chrome Extensions Useful for SEO

Local SEO 101

2014 March 18
tags:
by Kathy Alice
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Recently I had to set up a number of citations for a local business and I also caught part of a talk on local SEO at SMXWest. So while it was fresh in my mind I wrote a 101 style blog post with local seo tips. You’ll learn how the local seo ecosystem works and the basics in getting started.

More: Local SEO is just like regular SEO but with a Twist

Excerpts in Twenty Thirteen and Other Changes

2014 March 11
by Kathy Alice
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Twenty Thirteen WordPress Theme

Vibrant Orange Header from Twenty Thirteen

I’m using the latest default WordPress theme, twenty thirteen, for a membership site project that I have been working on.

For this project my needs are simple and so far twenty thirteen has delivered, albeit with some manageable issues.

Turning off comments was a simple one line code change, but implementing excerpts turned into something a little more involved, thanks to some newer underlying functionality that nevertheless complicated the task.

Adding Excerpts to Twenty Thirteen

Moz Releases 2013 Search Engine Ranking Factors Survey

2013 October 4
by Kathy Alice
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2013 Moz search engine factors surveyEvery other year Moz (formerly known as SEOMoz) surveys SEOs in the industry and asks them to weigh in on what they think are the most important search engine ranking factors. The 2013 edition of the survey has been released and this post has the results embedded in the full post – plus an embed of the Google+ discussion.

Perhaps the most noteworthy item on the survey is the belief by SEO’s that the number of +1′s has a positive correlation with high rankings ……

Click here to see the results

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