I have uploaded my XML sitemap to Google, Yahoo and more recently Bing, thanks to your blog post about the Bing Webmaster Center.
However, I’m wondering if Ask.com accept XML sitemaps and if so, how do I upload mine to Ask?
Yes, Ask.com DO support XML Sitemap submissions. Here’s a blurb about it from their Webmaster Help area:
“Yes, Ask.com supports the open-format Sitemaps protocol. Once you have prepared a sitemap for your site, add the sitemap auto-discovery directive to robots.txt, or submit the sitemap file directly to us via the ping URL”
The ping URL is as follows:
To add your sitemap to your robots.txt file, simply include this line:
Actually it’s not just Ask that supports the addition of sitemaps in robots.txt. Did you know that both Google and Yahoo also support that method of sitemap delivery?
You can either submit your sitemap via the search engine’s appropriate submission interface (e.g. Google Webmaster Tools, Yahoo Site Explorer, Bing Webmaster Center) or specify your sitemap location in your robots.txt file as per the above instructions.
I have been on the internet since 2006, I re-designed my site and for the past year it still has only indexed 16 pages out of 132.
Why doesn’t google index the entire site? I use a XML site map. I also wanted to know if leaving my old product pages up will harm my ratings. I have the site map setup to only index the new stuff and leave the old alone. I have also got the robots.txt file doing this as well. What should I do?
I’ve taken a look at your site and I see a number of red flags:
- Google hasn’t stored a cache of your home page. That’s weird. But maybe not so weird if you’ve stopped Google indexing your *old* pages.
- I can’t find your robots.txt file. The location it should be in leads to a 404 page that contains WAY too many links to your product pages. The sheer number of links on that page and the excessive keyword repetition may have tripped a Googlebot filter. Google will be looking for your robots.txt file in the same location that I did.
- Your XML sitemap doesn’t seem to contain links to all your pages. It should.
- Your HTML code contains duplicate title tags. Not necessarily a problem for Google, but it’s still extraneous code.
Apart from those things, your comments above worry me. What do you mean by “old product pages”? Is the content still relevant? Do you still sell those products? If the answer is no to both, then remove them or 301 redirect them to replacement pages.
Why have you only set up your sitemap and robots.txt to index your new pages? No wonder Google hasn’t indexed your whole site. Googlebot was probably following links from your older pages and now it can’t. Your old pages contain links to your new ones right? So why would you deliberately sabotage the ability to have your new pages indexed? Assuming I’m understanding your actions correctly, any rankings and traffic you built up with your old pages have likely gone also.
Some general advice to fix the issues:
- Run your site through the Spider Test to see how search engines index it.
- Remove indexing restrictions in your robots-txt file and move it to the most logical place.
- Add all your pages to your XML sitemap and change all the priority tags from 1 (sheesh!).
- Open a Google Webmaster Tools account and verify your site. You’ll be able to see exactly how many pages of your site Google has indexed and when Googlebot last visited. If Google is having trouble indexing the site, you’ll learn about it and be given advice for how to fix it.
- You’ve got a serious case of code bloat on your home page. The more code you have, the more potential indexing problems you risk. Shift all that excess layout code to a CSS file for Pete’s sake.
- The number of outgoing links on your home page is extraordinary. Even Google says don’t put more than 100 links on a single page. You might want to heed that advice.
What salary would i have if i were to get hired as an SEO or SEM? on average hourly and annual
A great question – and one often asked by people just entering (or considering joining) the SEO community. As you’ve probably anticipated, it’s not really possible to provide a definitive answer to this question, as the salary rates you could expect, depend on a number of variable. I’ve outlined below some of the most significant factors that are likely to influence SEO or SEM salaries :
- Location – you’ve not identified which part of the world you are from, but this can have a significant impact on Salary levels. Salaries in the US and UK, are typically higher than those in Australia, which are usually higher again than those in India (which has a massive and thriving SEO industry by the way). Hot Spots within a particular country are also likely to offer higher salaries that are based on the usual factors – such as cost of living, lifestyle, and competition.
- Organisation – whether you are working In House, within a specialist SEO Agency or as a private Consultant , will also influence you salary.
For In House SEOs, the size of the business, and their awareness/acceptance of the importance of SEO will influence what they are prepared to pay. Some SMBs are not able (or willing) to justify a full time SEO role, so Search Engine Optimisation might be seen as something that is done by the Web Developer or Marketer in their spare time.
The salary for In House SEOs in large organisations (with SEO teams) is broadly comparable to that of the salary for an equivalent role within a specialist SEO Agency (although the Agency SEO is likely to have the opportunity to deal with a broader range of clients and experiences) .
Salaries for private Consultants can vary dramatically – from the highest salaries for recognised SEO Gurus to the (probably) lowest hourly rates for relatively inexperienced start-up SEOs.
[Editor Note: You might also want to review the salaries and jobs categories in this blog to get a good idea of the type of salaries that SEO/SEM staff can command. My article 11 Reasons Why You Should Consider a Job in Search Engine Marketing also lists some common salary ranges. Cheers, Kalena]
- Role – there are many different types of roles and activities within the SEO Industry, some people focus on one particular role, others undertake the complete range of activities. Typically the more experienced you get in a particular area, the more specialised you become, and the higher salary you can expect. Types of roles include – Strategist, Consultant, Analyst, Researcher, Writer.
- Experience – I say experience here rather than qualification, because there is not currently an internationally recognised SEO qualification (although given the increasing awareness of the SEO industry – this may change in the future). SEO Course’s such as those offered by Search Engine College are a fabulous way to gain an understanding of this field, and provide a valuable insight into SEO techniques, strategies and tips. However, experience – dealing with customers in real world situations is probably the single best way to justify a higher salary. Being able to demonstrate real success with high profile clients in competitive industries, proves your experience and abilities.
- Profile – the better you are at raising your profile in the industry, the higher salary you can expect. A high profile is usually (but not always) a natural result of experience and confidence. If you are outspoken in the industry – through blogging, involvement in forums, attendance and presentation at industry events, etc. your reputation will develop. If it is clear that you understand the industry and know what you are talking about; if you offer useful advice and innovative strategies; and if you can demonstrate your ability to achieve real results for your clients, you may be on your way to “SEO Guru” status gathering followers (and an increased salary) along the way.
- Supply and Demand – as in all things, supply and demand will influence the level of salary you can expect. If you have few competitors for a particular role you are likely to be able to demand a higher salary – providing you have suitable experience. Supply and demand changes from time to time and is influenced by many things including geographic location , unemployment rates, and the financial climate.
In these days of financial uncertainty, with many businesses tightening up their budgets, you might speculate that the demand for SEOs would decrease. However, the reverse seems to be true. Many SEOs are in fact experiencing an increase in work levels, as business owners realise that they need to get smarter about how to develop their businesses and spend their marketing budget.
Rand Fishkin of SEOMoz wrote an excellent post on this topic ( see : SEO Salaries – How Much Should You Make) – however this was written in 2006 – and now, 3 years on, the annual salary figures are almost certainly higher. (how about an update Rand?)
Search Engine Optimisation is a role requiring specialist knowledge and experience, and as such you should expect to achieve a higher salary than a more traditional web or marketing role. Some of the factors outlined above are outside your control (unless you are willing to move to another part of the world for example), but one factor that you are able to influence is experience. Getting some good basic SEO Training and undertaking some Search Engine Marketing Courses (through Search Engine College of course) , doing some Research, and gaining Experience (even if it is only on your own/friends websites initially) is the best way for you to improve you salary prospects.
WebConsulting Web Optimisation
One of the lessons in your SEO201 course says that if you run PPC campaigns and use landing pages for these campaigns that are similar in layout and content, you should prevent search engines robots from indexing them. Please explain why?
In my thoughts, the more files the search engines index the more exposure you may get.
PPC landing pages can often look nearly identical and the only difference between them is the target keywords used. Web pages that look too similar are sometimes filtered out of the search results as duplicate content. Too much duplicate content on a domain may impact it’s ability to rank highly, therefore I always recommend preventing robots from indexing landing pages, using your robots.txt file.
If you are using existing pages on your site as PPC landing pages and they aren’t too similar to each other, there is no need to block robots from indexing them. Make sense?