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Search Engine Optimisation

SheerSeo – Search Engine Optimisation Software




SheerSEOSheerSEO contacted me recently about trying out their online SEO software. At first I wasn’t sure what to make of the site as their logo looks identical to Awebers, but I downloaded the 90 day trial anyway and was impressed with the stats it brings up so I thought I would share it with you all.

SheerSEO offers 4 monthly packages, which cost $7, $10, $15 and $40 respectively. The more expensive packages allow you to track more URLs and keywords. Though their 90 day trial allows you to try out their software for free to see if it’s worth signing up.

Let’s look at the sign up process ūüôā

Signing Up

The sign up process is quick and easy. First thing you need to do is enter your name and email, your domain url and where you want results to be localised to. Then just choose a username and password.


Next you need to enter the search terms you want to monitor. They suggest search terms for you to track but I found these to be very inaccurate, bringing up irrelevant search terms such as 2007, 2008 and 2009. So it’s best to just enter some keywords relevant to your blog.

With the trial package you can choose up to 40 keywords.


Next you enter the URLs of the pages you want to track. Obviously the first one you want to track is your home page but it’s worth adding main sections of your blog and popular posts you have written.

With the trial package you can track up to 40 URLs.



SheerSeo provide information in 9 different areas. The data from each section can be downloaded in Excel format.


The Rankings shows you where your pages are listed on your chosen terms on Google, Yahoo and Bing. The results are saved so that you can see how your standings change in time. This section is a quick way of seeing how your blog is ranking for your main keywords.

SheerSEO Rankings

Main Referrers

The main referrers section is one of my favourites. It displays a large list of links which are linking to your blog. For each link it shows you

  • The source URL (i.e. who is linking to you)
  • The PageRank of the page linking to you
  • The link text they used to link to you
  • The target URL (i.e. the page on your blog they linked to)
  • Whether the link used a nofollow tag or not
  • The PR Boost. This shows links which didn’t use a nofollow tag. It is calculated by 10^PR/(number of outgoing links).

I found this section incredibly useful, particularly for the PR Boost figure as this shows you exactly where your PR juice is coming from. It also highlights who is attaching nofollow links when linking to you. Very handy indeed!

Number of Backlinks

This section simply shows the number of backlinks to your blog. The details are saved so you can see how this figure is changing over time.


SheerSEO also shows you who has been tweeting about your blog. There are other scripts which show you this information though it’s a welcome feature nevertheless.

SheerSEO Twitter


This section shows you how many of your blog posts are listed in social media sites. It only listed Digg and Delicious for me but I’m not 100% sure if it lists bookmarks on other social bookmarking sites (perhaps it does and BloggingTips just isn’t linked there).


Keyword Density

The keyword density highlights the most common words and phrases which are used on your blog. I’m sure some of the results your blog brings up will surprise you!

It shows you occurrences of single keyword, two word phrases and 3 word phrases. It should add some weight to your SEO research and help you understand why you are ranking for some phrases over others.

Keyword Density

Keyword Density

Indexed Pages

This section just shows you how many pages you have indexed in Google and Yahoo. I found it strange that they didn’t include Bing in this section as it was included in the rankings section.

Supplemental Index Ratio

The supplemental index ratio shows you how many of your pages are listed in Googles index. Pages listed in this index are less likely to appear in results compared to pages in the main index.

google supplemental index

Backlinks Watchdog

The backlinks watchdog lets you keep track of important of incoming links and lets you know if that status of that link changes. Here’s how they explain it:

The “guarded backlinks” is a feature which enables you to guard your site’s valuable backlinks. The chosen guarded links will be monitored daily and if there will be any change in the back link status you’ll be notified.
To add more back links use the “Add new guarded backlink” link, which opens to a web form.

To delete a guarded link press the “remove” button – this will completely erase the guarded link from our records.

Each guarded link has a status icon. A warning status means that there are alerts regarding the link. Alerts are created when there was a downgrade in the link status. You can press the “more info” link to get more information regarding the link and it’s alerts.

This could be used in conjunction with the main referrer stats. All you would have to do is track the links which are passing you the most PR juice.


SheerSeo doesn’t give you a lot of stats compared to some other SEO scripts. Many stats like the number of backlinks to your blog can be checked manually, though obviously this gets more time consuming when you are tracking more than one domain, so I can see the need for it. In particular I found the PR Boost information helpful as it’s something I haven’t seen elsewhere before.

I recommend signing up and checking the stats I have spoken of to get a better idea of what SheerSeo offers. If you do find it useful then you may be interested in staying on after your 3 months has run out. If so, there are 4 premium services available to you.

With all premium packages you download your reports via excel and get customer support directly from SheerSEO.

  • Light ($7 a month) – 20 keywords, 20 URLs and 5 guarded backlinks.
  • Standard ($10 a month) – 200 keywords, 200 URLs and 20 guarded backlinks.
  • Advanced ($15 a month) – 400 keywords, 400 URLs and 100 guarded backlinks.
  • Professional ($40 a month) – 400 keywords, 400 URLs and 100 guarded backlinks. Also includes extensive competitors analysis.


I’m not sure if SheerSEO offers value for money. I haven’t signed up to too many online SEO tracking services so I can’t compare it to other pay per month services. Thankfully, I don’t need to, as you can try it out for free for 90 days. If you find it useful during that time then you should consider looking at the premium service.

If you are not keen on signing up and want to see what SheerSEO can do then I recommend checking out their demo page.

Link: SheerSeo

Kevin Muldoon is a professional blogger with a love of travel. He writes regularly about topics such as WordPress, Blogging, Productivity and Social Media on his personal blog and provides support to bloggers at Rise Forums. He can also be found on Twitter @KevinMuldoon and .

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Search Engine Optimisation

How to Create More Clickable Google Search Snippets



Google search results are becoming ridiculously competitive. Plus, Google’s search results are becoming incredibly engaging: Many search users prefer to use search results (open “People Also Ask” results, clicks image and video carousels, etc.) that getting a click from search results is getting harder and harder.

With the introduction of new and flashier ways to be seen, you still have to learn how to creatively and dynamically exploit those offered tools. Being seen with so many others attempting the same technique is just as hard as it was when visibility relied only on ranking.

How to get more people click your search listing in SERPs? Here are three really effective ways:

1. Monitor Your Click-Through

The first step to improving your search snippet visibility is to set up monitoring of how your pages are performing right now and get alerted if anything changes.

Finteza is an advanced analytics platform allowing you to keep a close eye on your site performance in search and all the various channels.

To monitor your click-through from organic search:

  • Register an account at Finteza
  • Add their tracking code to your site and give it some time to accumulate some data
  • Click “Sources” and there choose “Search”
  • Go to “Pages” to see how your top landing pages are performing in search:


This gives you bird’s eye view on your site organic performance in organic search. It’s a great way to analyze and evaluate your old content. Using Finteza, you can also set up a retargeting campaign to target those search referrals better if they choose to return to your site.

Repeat steps above at least weekly to see if any of those pages start losing clicks from search: These might need some work. Here’s exactly what you may want to do:

2. Use Semantic Analysis

Google uses a variety of analysis methods to identify high-quality content that meets their users’ needs. One of the key components of Google’s content evaluation process is semantic analysis.

Basically speaking, semantic analysis is about clustering your key topic into subtopics and concepts that constitute it. To give a quick example, if we were to apply semantic analysis to [hiking], we’d come up with a variety of underlying concepts including, National Parks, Mountains, picturesque trails, being outdoors, and even birdwatching.

All of those concepts relate to hiking in some way or another.

Broadly speaking, semantic analysis helps machines understand natural language – the way that humans communicate – including context, goals, etc.

When it comes to search optimization, semantic SEO helps:

  • Create more indepth and richer content that meets Google’s expectations
  • Optimize for intent (what’s the end goal behind each search)
  • Give Google enough context for them to create a more clickable search snippet for your listing.

Another example of semantic analysis in action is Google’s results for [where it was filmed]. While the query is seemingly absolutely generic, Google is able to understand this question relates to the movie “It”.

Semantic SEO

Text Optimizer is the semantic analysis tool that goes right to the source, i.e. Google search snippets. For each query you type, it would collect Google’s search snippets and apply semantic analysis to them to come up with the list of underlying concepts:

Text Optimizer

[TextOptimizer’s results for [where it was filmed] – as you can see the tool got the actual context of the query and clustered it into related topics]

Including 20-25 of these concepts into your content will help Google better understand your text, and create richer more clickable search snippets. Here’s a more detailed review of the site I did previously.

3. Optimize for Rich Snippets

Rich snippets have become the new keywords. These little details are what causes your listing to “pop” in a search, catching the eye of the user no matter what place on the first page you occupy. Proper use of rich snippets are a requirement for being seen.

“Rich snippets” are search results providing the user with more answers right within SERPs. To qualify for rich snippets your web page should have rich markup:

Here are the supported types of rich snippets:


If you have reviewed a tool or a product, use Aggregate Rating structured data for your search snippet to look like this. This will populate stars in search that definitely draw an eye!



Recipes will have some nutritional and preparation information, like how long it takes to cook and how many calories are in each serving.



Events will show dates and times for each event for quick reference. Every event name is linked in search results giving you more clickable links in search.

Event schema


There’s a number of structure data types that allow you to add more details to your brand knowledge graph (NOT for local businesses though).

These include: Official social media accounts, logo, and the corporate contact:

Corporate Contact

Movies and Books

Movies and books will also show off a ranking system, and some product pages have a star rating alongside price.


HowTo markup will help Google to locate more information from your tutorial, for example, number of steps, time to complete, etc.:


HowTo Schema shouldb’t be used for recipes though. Other than that there are no official restrictions to certain types of tutorials that can have it.

One word of caution here: Only use structured data when it absolutely makes sense. Google frowns upon using Schema just for the sake if rich snippets. If it is not an actual review, don’t use the ratings markup, as it could backfire. Google actually sends manual penalties for a structured abuse, so read the documentation properly to make sure you follow all the rules!

Optimizing for rich snippets relies heavily on whichever website builder and/or CMS you are using. For most of them there are lots of plugins and addons allowing to quickly integrate structured markup.

The above tips will hopefully help you generate more clicks from your current organic positions without having to invest in improving it. See it as a low-hanging fruit opportunity to improving your traffic!

Do you have a tip for optimizing search snippets? Let us know in the comments!

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Search Engine Optimisation

Top the Charts! 5 Must-Know SEO Solutions to Promote Your Managed IT Service




According to Internet Live Stats, Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second. That’s 3.5 billion searches a day.

When someone searches for your managed IT service, you have the opportunity to attract them straight towards your website.

All you need is search engine optimization or SEO!

Here are five SEO solutions that can help drive traffic to your website. With these techniques, you can attract new customers and grow your business!

Let’s get optimizing.

1. Topics & Keywords

An effective SEO strategy starts with a list of keywords. These keywords reflect the content your customers are searching for online. Using these keywords, you can create content that matches their search intent.

To start, you can use tools like Google Keyword Planner and Google Trends. These tools will show you the popularity of each keyword.

Once you have this list, you can create pillars and clusters. Pillars give your website visitors the main page of collective content. Then, the clusters break this content into sub-topics with specified information.

This strategy can help boost your SEO plan and attract people to your Managed IT Services.

That way, you’re attracting new website visitors while providing them with an easy, efficient user experience, too.

2. On-Site SEO

Your website needs optimization as a whole as well as on a page-based level. To start, make sure your website’s content hierarchy is well-structured.

Then, there are a number of areas that require review to ensure these SEO solutions work.

Once you’ve studied your target audience to determine your keywords, you also need:

  • Descriptive URLs
  • Keyword-optimized page titles
  • Compelling meta descriptions
  • Content optimization (includes keyword placement in headers, body text, etc.)
  • Good user experience
  • Structured data markup
  • Effective call-to-action language

As part of your overall SEO strategy, on-page SEO is an important component of attracting visitors.

3. Off-Site SEO

An off-site SEO strategy includes local SEO. This strategy helps you attract local customers to your website and business.

To start, make sure your listings are updated with the correct content information.

This includes your Google My Business listing as well.

4. Technical SEO

Technical SEO ensures search engines can find your content. These areas include:

  • Crawling
  • Indexing
  • Mobile-optimization
  • Website speed
  • Hierarchy

Technical SEO solutions are essential for success. Otherwise, how will customers find your website?

5. Content

According to Fit Small Business, search is the number one driver of traffic to content sites. In fact, it beats social media by over 300 percent.

Your content should consider customer search intent. That way, you’re giving visitors content that answers their questions. This can include service content, credibility content, and marketing content.

This content should also add value to your business.

Consider writing blog posts or white papers. You can also post videos or add testimonials to your website.

That way, your SEO content shows visitors you’re a valuable resource.

Bring It in: 5 Must-Have SEO Solutions

With these five must-have SEO solutions, you can attract new visitors to your website. The right techniques will then turn these visitors into leads, then leads into paying customers!

That way, your company grows, one SEO strategy at a time.

Check out our latest posts for more effective tips and tricks!

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Search Engine Optimisation

SEO 101: The Essential SEO FAQ for Bloggers



I don’t provide SEO services and I am self-taught – which hardly makes an expert. But I’ve been blogging for a lifetime and for all these years I’ve been reading about and implementing SEO practices – which means I know more than an average blogger.

With that said, I’ve decided to put together this SEO FAQ for those who want to quickly understand the concept without going too indepth:

What is SEO?

Simply put, SEO is about making a website easy for search engines to discover, go through and understand.

This includes:

  • creating content (based on search engine users’ needs),
  • making your content “link-worthy” (i.e. attract backlinks),
  • using HTML and structured data to make content easier to understand for the machine, etc.

SEO is NOT trying to “fake” any of positive signals search engines use to rank web pages. Search engine friendliness should be authentic and SEO professionals should work together with website owners to achieve that.

Do Bloggers Need to Know SEO?


SEO aims at helping a page rank on top of organic search results, and search engines are known to bring the most qualified leads (people turn to Google when they know what they want).

No traffic source is as effective as search traffic. Unlike driving clicks with ads (PPC), organic search is NOT interrupting user’s surfing the web. Instead, it serves them content exactly when they ask

This makes SEO one of the most important digital marketing channels. It can drive highly targeted traffic and pre-qualified leads to your site on a continuous basis (no need to keep investing in ads)

How Has SEO changed over the years?

SEO is maturing fast and it has been exciting to watch. The biggest driving force behind this evolution is Google that has been working hard on their search algorithm to understand natural language and search intent, as well as penalizing any manipulating tactics.

The result: SEO has become more integrated into other marketing channels. Furthermore, SEO is more about focusing on long-term goals rather than quick traffic gains

If ten years ago SEO was all about creating fake signals (keyword stuffing, link buying, etc.), these days it’s all about creating linkable assets that rank and engage potential customers.

The future of SEO is in voice search, artificial intelligence, more diverse content types and channels.

Can SEO Be Handled “At Home”?

WordPress bloggers generally don’t have to worry about getting SEO help. WordPress is pretty well set up and there’s a variety of free plugins to help.

Here’s a detailed guide to get yourself educated: Google SEO: Should it be your only priority?

What is The Most Important SEO Element?

Content… by far! Content is the foundation of any SEO strategy. Content ranks, attracts links, spreads, engages customers and turns them into believers.

Content is not just an article or a blog post. By content I mean any kind of text you put on your site, from a landing page copy to your “About us” page or a product description.

Many businesses jump into digital marketing without willing to invest in content, and this strategy is doomed to failure. Building on-site content should be everyone’s SEO priority.

Text Optimizer is a great tool that helps you create better content by providing you with the mindmap of associated concepts and questions. It uses semantic analysis to process Google’s search snippets and break any keyword into subtopics.

Text Optimizer for content creation

While it’s primarily search intent optimization tool, it’s also helpful for overall content research showing which topics to cover and how to structure your article.

You can read my own Text Optimizer case study here.

What Are the Most Dangerous SEO Myths?

  1. Keyword density… This is one of the most persistent SEO myths out there. Why I dislike it so much is because it fills the web with trash content. Keyword-density focused strategy spoils the brand image and creates lots of problems which take lots of time to fix.
  2. On-page SEO alone will get you to #1. There are so many SEO agencies there that are happy to keep “optimizing” your website but rankings won’t come. The reality, you still need outbound tactics to gain backlinks and external visibility (branding) to achieve higher rankings
  3. SEO is dying… SEO death has been predicted for years now. These days with Google’s new SERPs features that aim at keeping the user using Google, and the fast growth of voice search, SEO is predicted to die soon again

The truth is, SEO is full of ingenuous tools and people. It is evolving together with search engines and it will survive Google’s death one day.

What’s the Best SEO Advice You’ve Received?

There’s a real human being behind each query.

Really if you stop thinking of keywords as “word strings to optimize for” and start seeing them as a real person’s question, SEO becomes much clearer (and more fun).

This mindset helps build more helpful content, optimize for search intent better (why would anyone type this into the search box? What are they willing to do once they find the answer?)

On top of that, by looking at keyword research as something that helps you serve your customer will help you understand your audience better and come up with better products and offers, on a higher-level.

Answer The Public is a nice free tool that turns keyword research into question research helping you to clearer see your readers’ struggles behind their search queries.


On top of that, the tool also mind-maps the retrieved keywords / questions helping you in brainstorming.

Where Does a Blogger Start with SEO?

As stated above, there’s not much a blogger can do to start with SEO except for creating useful original content.

Here’s also a nice clutter-free introduction into SEO: SEO Basics: Complete Beginner’s Guide to Search Engine Optimization . Here’s a much easier guide but also one that lists the most essential step: 3 Basic Steps to Making Your New Blog SEO-Friendly. Here’s also a helpful writing checklist that will help you handle the basics:

writing checklist

As you may have noticed, I am not listing a ton of tools here as I don’t want this guide to overwhelm the reader. Those mentioned are a good start!

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