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Archive for 2009
Drupal (for those that don’t know) is a very popular open-source content management system (CMS). It is built to be very lightweight at the core level. Features are added in by using modules that are submitted by the Drupal development community. They can help to create new content, work with users, add media, and of course, help automate the process of search engine optimizing your site. The following modules are essential to help the SEO of your site.
SEO Drupal Modules
Pathauto – Creates automatic URL aliases based on patterns created by the Token module. Includes options for taxonomy, user, content types, and others. This module is very flexible and allows you to modify the URLs for any page on the site.
XML Sitemap – Creates a sitemap based on the sitemaps.org spec. Also allows for submission to search engines with the required api keys. An XML Sitemap is the best way to show the search engines of new content on your site and this module can create that sitemap very easily for you.
Google Analytics – This is a fully loaded analytics tracking solution. Just imput the UA number for your site and the tracking code will be included on every page. Allows for blocking tracking on certain pages, tracking by role, downloads, and other metrics.
Page Title – Similar to Pathauto, but for meta Title Tags. You can setup patterns for different pieces of content. It also allows the option for a user to override and individual page’s Title Tag.
Global Redirect – Creates 301 redirects for different urls on the same site, like node/1, node?q=1, and /about-us/. This is great for making sure you aren’t splitting your rank between different URLs for the same page. Global Redirect also makes sure your URLs are all uniform by stripping the final “/”. This is a great help in Google Analytics reports so you know that every pageview is counted appropriately.
Nodewords – This allows you set meta description and keywords for individual nodes and views. Newer beta versions also include the ability to add a meta confirmation tag for Google Webmaster Tools. This way you do not need to edit your templates or upload a file.
SEO Checklist – This module is a great place to help keep track of all of the above modules and more. There are quite a few things that can be setup to automate your site’s SEO performance. SEO Checklist helps you keep all of these things straight.
Drupal SEO Performance
Because of these wonderful modules, Drupal is regarded as one of the top performing CMS platforms for SEO. With the tools above, you are able to configure everything to run in the background, so you can focus on your pages and your content and not have to worry too much about the technical details.
Other CMS platforms are able to accomplish some of these things, but very few if any are able to do everything for CMS that Drupal does with these modules. The other SEO benefit is that as search engine optimization changes, the Drupal community can adapt and quickly update the modules. The Drupal admin system can notify you of updates to you modules to make sure your site is kept up-to-date.
Most of us are aware of Holiday Trends and Planning as we scurry to find the best deals on Cyber Monday or Free Shipping Day. If you are a little late in getting your site optimized for this year’s holiday rush, start planning for upcoming seasonality.
Online shopping and events can make effective use of campaigns related to keyphrases such as free shipping, discount, gift, coupon and last minute deals. Use Google Insights and Trends to discover seasonal trends for your segment of the market. Whether it is a gift membership, free shipping or other discount, savvy shoppers are on the lookout for value.
Start planning now for health and fitness related topics in the early January, flu and cold season topics, and upcoming holidays for Spring Break and Valentines. Coordinate a combined effort from on-page web optimization with off-page marketing efforts including newsletters, events, and social media announcements. Spend some time looking at your past year’s analytics and scour for traffic spikes or increased opportunities around industry events. Setup coordinated campaigns which may include a targeted PPC campaign.
Not sure what dates are important for your business or association? Check out the calendar for editorial planning from the presentation by the Schipul SEM Team.
Previously you could only have 4 goals per profile. Now you can have up to twenty, made up of 4 sets of 5 goals. Additionally, you can now setup Engagement Goals which allow you to use Time on Site and Pages per Visit as goal-capturing metrics. This is valuable for many types of sites (like Blogs!) that may consider a Goal accomplished without actually capturing contact information or making a sale.
Advanced Filters allow you to create single one-off filters for different reports. Currently, you would need to use the Advanced Segments to accomplish this. Now, filtering top landing pages with over 10 visits and bounce rates over 80% is a snap. This will help you find the pain points in your site and make positive changes. This can also help you identify your top performing keywords and markets.
Automatic and Custom Alerts
If you use Google Alerts then you know how valuable it is to have this kind of automation. These alerts will allow you to track increases in certain activities or to certain pages on your site. They will be very useful when tracking different campaigns and when monitoring the effects of social media. These alerts can be viewed and grouped by date or by type, so you can create clear reports for the things you need to watch, and they can be emailed to you automatically. Alerts are not available yet but should be out by the end of the month.
Many of these features are available today and the rest will be rolled out very soon. Check back with us at theSEMblog for more tips on how to use these great new tools.