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What the Wikipedia Study Really Means for SEO

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

Intelligent Positioning performed a study that quite caused a stir among the people at SEOs. The revelation of the study was that Wikipedia featured in the very start of the page of a Google search 99.2% of the time and almost half of the time, it featured as the inception link. What precisely this translates to an SEO? Is it more or is it less?

One must consider first, the methodology of Intelligent Positioning by perusing their post on their blog. A random noun generator was used to generate 1002 words, and the team used only the English language for their study. Google’s UK site was used for searching, which was accessed through Google Chrome, with an incognito browser window in order to avoid personalization or fancy customization.

Superficially, the results spoke for themselves. For almost 99.2% of the word search, a Wikipedia article for the same appeared on the very first page.And for more than half the results, the Wikipedia article was featured as the first entry. Actually, it was completely rare for a result not have  featured as the main link, that the researchers had such an easy time to compile a list that did not have the inception link. The list had words such as mail, trainers, news, sweets, national, wardrobe, phone, and flight. Highly competitive were these words, which were wholly or part of the name of a large corporation, such as the word ‘National’, Intelligent Positioning notes.SEO India

The only shock, experienced by most SEOs is the apparent domination of Wikipedia in the search. Google apparently has the so called love affair with Wikipedia. Search Engine Wave founder, Danny Goodwin even went out to highlight that Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founder, stated that ‘Wikipedia was the best thing to ever happen to internet’ and had given so much in donation to the company.

To be frank, we won’t – at least not in the way we used to think. Looking over the study methodology again, we can observe something important. People today do not search with one word nouns alone. But the search comprised only of that.

A popular advertising data analytics company composed a research study based on the user search habits on 5 search companies including Google. Though the study lasted only 3 days, Jan 9th to Jan 12th, it had close to one hundred million search queries. Among other information it had collected, it was observed that the average query information used four words.

Single word queries, like the research organized by Intelligent Positioning aren’t being used much by people at all. Actually, single word queries just made up quarter of the entire search queries back in November. But then they made up the largest pile of searches made. But then 2 word searches dominated still at 70%.

The reasoning from this is that the previous study conducted by Intelligent Positioning does not simulate modern search methodology of people. That does not translate the fact that still the ever dominant position of Wikipedia in single word search is mind boggling.

The secret of the success is that primary importance is given for a single search term in Wikipedia. Also looking at the Wikipedia page, we can observe that there are tons of links on the page which are relevant for that particular term. This linking feature, which is internal, enables Google’s crawler to effectively search the site faster and thus helps prioritizing it.

In the end, Wikipedia has been around for a very long time, with an ever growing content and articles which are constantly updated. These two nail points give the page an excellent authenticity and a stronghold. Citations and links are constantly received– and not only from amateur bloggers, but also from many rich high profile sites.

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Our Site Speed is slower than 94% of Sites Online! How to Improve?

Monday, April 9th, 2012

These are the things to be done in order to increase page load times. Have an idea of the page load times now so that u can see later how this affects you.

    1. Utilizing the Cache Plug-in -

This saves the webpages as html files and enables fewer PHP calls to WordPress so that the page loads way faster. Super cache is what is used more, but Quick cache or Total cache can also be a viable alternative.

    1. Usage of Content Delivery Network

Using Content Delivery Network, such as Cloud Front from Amazon can easily offload network traffic like CSS, JavaScript, etc. This makes the site load very fast. Max CDN is another way when coupled with Total cache, can deliver very fast load times.

    1. Reducing clutters in Sidebar-

Loading of sidebar widgets can also affect load speeds, which consume network resources unnecessarily. Removing the widgets will present a cleaner design of the web pages.

    1. Social Button Reduction

Social buttons are a big drag on the resources as they tend to be of a large file size. The Share bar plugin especially has many links and takes ages to load. So it is advisable to keep only popular sites as shares, like Facebook or Twitter or Google. Also adding them before and after the posts may increase sharing, but reduce load times.

    1. Avoiding commenting system extras

Loading times of comment systems can be pretty huge. There are lots of comment systems including the ever popular Facebook comment system. Word press comments are the fastest to load. But usage of Facebook comments over Word press essentially results in a tradeoff between load times and popularity.

    1. Remove Gravatars

Hosting Gravatars may be looking cool and attract comments and all that, but when comments become large, loading up 200 Gravatars can really slow the load times of the page. So disable them for a clean comment system.

    1. Loading of fewer comments

Load only 5 to 6 comments and load further if the user requests it. This will load up the page faster and make it more responsive. Utilize the Word Press comment settings (Settings>Discussion) for reduction of comments to be seen. Stopping spam comments and also stopping their attempts can significantly aid in proper load times.

    1. JavaScript at bottom, minimize, compress

Shifting of JavaScript to footer can be rewarding as it does not interfere with the page loading. Combining of JavaScript too can save a lot of resources. Always loading of CSS should be in HEAD and minimize the use of CSS if possible.

    1. Reduce Images and their sizes

Keeping image sizes low, using lesser colors to save and compressing it high will result in small file sizes for embedding. Loading up few images per site is also essential. Offloading them to a CDN can also be a viable option. There are several plugins, which compress the images on the net to boost up load times.

  1. Embedding fewer videos

Embedding of YouTube videos resulted in page load times to be highest If it is also the popular page, then the visitors may experience very slow speeds.So embedded videos should be kept to a minimum.

Additionally latest browsers have facility to compress the web pages and display them quickly to us. Simple tweaks to the .ini file of the site can compress the site significantly. Some sites may also have the option directly to enable GZip. These are being implemented on a regular basis by many. But then proper tweaking can result in amazing load times, which made the site load twice as fast.

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