".......and unfortunately nearly all make money online blogs are crap, so he, Dave, decided to write his own. It's pretty spankin."
Dalai Lama
Jun 292010

How To Rank Better In Google: On site tips and numerous ramblings

Hot water freezes before cold water. Put a cup of hot water and a cup of cold water in the freezer and the hot water will freeze first.

Just one of those weird inexplicable things, just like the fact that some sites attract visitors easily and rank well and rank for tons of buying keywords but simply fail to get any significant numbers of sales. Waiting for a site to get traffic to see if it is a winner is one of the most frustrating things that we have to do when it comes to Internet Marketing. But that is the game we are in and we simply have to get on with it. It amazes me every time I build a new site and begin to slowly see a few visitors. Man, it is hard work, many sites fail, and it takes a ton of work, backlinking being the most important of all. And boy do we need plenty of them unless we find that magic keyword list somewhere over the rainbow. But, keep at it, day in day out, write content, get backlinks from everywhere you can, and the magic slowly happens.

But there is a great way to really get our sites going that little bit quicker and it will certainly help to attract those that will hopefully be buying our products or clicking on the infamous blue links.

C’mon Dave get on with it.

Hey, you should know by now that I will get around to it.

I am talking about improving the speed with which you can get traffic by ranking in the search engines by adding more text to the top of your site, and the sidebars. Running an article directory and also looking at other peoples sites before I steal them (joking, there are more than enough niches to go round), I simply have lost count of the number of sites I see where the site description is either non existent or very short.

Add to that the fact that the sidebars are only used for recent posts or categories and not a lot else, apart from maybe an affiliate banner (which convert terribly by the way in comparison to text links like I mostly have here), and many people are leaving a lot of potential cash on the table.

Let’s take a look at just how we may be able to give our site a good boost when it is relatively new and also set ourselves up for the future to get a lot more good quality traffic and potential customers or clickety clickers (aaargghhh).

Should You Add A Long Site Description?

I am not talking about an essay but for wordpress blogs there is the setting to add your site description. I have definitely found that as many buying keywords within reason will help to re-enforce just what our site is about and give us a good number of extra potential keywords to rank for. This site description is one of the first things a bot crawls and if the keywords are all based around the niche we are in then we are saying in no uncertain terms just what we are about and what we want traffic for.

Get a handful of good keywords and add them to your site descriptoon, but don’t just add them and nothing else. Making it visitor friendly. Not done here yet but it will be, no rush for this poor blogger with his stupid niche that is impossible to get in to.

But at some point it ma;y read something more like:

Make money on the Internet, how to make money blogging, how to earn money online and real life tips to make money with affiliate programs

or some such thing. Anyway the point is that a site description still seems to hold some weight as far as I can tell. In time it will allow us to rank for these terms and having them site wide on every page indexed is no bad thing. Met tags do not seem to be worth using any more but they will certainly not hurt either.

Should You Use Sticky Posts

I do not use many sticky posts but on one site I use it to great effect. I have a short post that is always on the home page and in it I have a god number of my main keywords. It means that the home page always has its main terms present and I then have the latest post beneath this.

It keeps it dynamic and as I always only allow a post to show ion the home page if it is related tightly to my main niche for the site then the adsense ads are always good, but adsense and its $60 odd a day is not a great earner and not something that is pursued on more than one site or two as it is not my preferred way of making money online.

Give me the $300, $400 and more a day from affiliate programs instead, there is more to be made in my opinion. Which brings me to the importance of internal linking to the home page. Mix it up a little, it really does help.

Internal Links To The Home Page

We have our blog or site description set up, either in wordpress dashboard or in the all in one SEO pack if we do not want them to be seen by our visitors so we now have more keywords as the main targets than just our site name.

As we write content that ranks well and our site ages and begins to perform we will begin to rank for those terms. As we build the site every now and then add a link from a post to the home page. Use your main term more often but do not forget to re-enforce what you are about by also linking with your other terms.

It simply makes it much more weighted what the site is about.

And when out getting your backlinks ensure that you mix up the home page links. Apart from anything else it gives you a more mixed profile and as they terms are all related it does nothing but show search engines that you are an authority for your niche. I have a site that is now a massive earner for us and it has just past the year mark.

Man, what a slog. A year of hard work, more articles written for backlinks than I care to even think of. But as it began to rank for its main terms and for hundreds of product terms within the niche I began to rank for other main terms as well, naturally, without me using them as anchored backlinks.

Then away we go.

I add the terms to my site description, I get a few backlinks and they sky rocket in rankings. I did the same on another year plus site that was ranking well for a crazy tough term, and I had not even written an article about it. This happens for sites that have authority. Make money on the Internet that little bit easier by going with what you are given by the search engines as you go along. It will do nothing but help the site. Mix up the home page links internally as well as from the many resources on the side bar that can really boost your rankings.

My main site is now number 1 for its main terms thanks to a final push and rising for others all the time, hopefully it will never end and the sales will continue. But always have a backup plan. Get new hosting and at least begin to re-do what you have already done for a successful site, in time they will rank well, you get more positions in the search engines and obviously make more money. And you have a great backlink source too as it is on a different IP address. So, internal and all other links to the homepage should be varied a little, you may just be surprised at what you rank for in a year or so, even for mad competitive terms. Making sites on more focused niches within your main niche is invaluable. You already have a good set of keywords and you can set yourself up with some top banana backlinks, which is no bad thing. Plus extra earnings which is the name of the game.

But here is something that is often overlooked on product blogs and it really can draw in more traffic and seems to work very well on newer sites for some better long tails.

What To Put On The Sidebar

When writing about how to build an authority site I think I mentioned this and it is to put price ranges on the side bar for products.

Use Price Ranges

On news sites I do it when I can get around to it, and ad it to old sites too. If you are selling items under a niche then add price ranges to the sidebar.

I definitely seem to find that even early on I get longtails from people looking for so and so item under $30 or whatever the ranges are. You can then also write posts for general items under a certain price. But there is no doubt that adding a price range may give you extra traffic, it shows the bots just what your site is all about and gets more sales.


Direct affiliate links.

Link direct to a price range on Amazon or any other affiliate program from the sidebar. Do it for price range, do it for brand, size, etc. Don’t just have links to your own categories, add that lower down maybe, but if you do that then when people are browsing ht site and want to see just what you have under Alien Workshop Skateboards, guess where they go, to cookie heaven my friends. We are not being sneaky, we are showing the searcher just where to find, in the easiest manner, exactly what they want.

This is the most direct route from them apart from going to Amazon direct to buy the product. This is what they have been searching for.

Will all these affiliate links harm my rankings?

For me it has not, so that is all I can say, usual disclaimer though, not my fault if you crash and burn.

We can also add this type of setup at the top of our site by adding html direct on to the theme templates, and I do it more and more. Add a list of the main sellers, price ranges for the products, or a link to the full range. It is a little extra content, makes you look more like a store and gives people a quick way to buy.

My top earning website has absolutely no affiliate links in the posts at all. They are all above the fold and on the sidebars.

When writing product posts for buying keywords no one wants to read your inane witterings in an attempt to reach 300 words. They want what they typed in so a simple way to give our loved searcher what they want is to add it above the fold in the easiest possible way to buy. It cannot be done for every niche but if you are selling a specific brand of perfume and there are only 10 options then a simple list at the top of the site for people to click on is the best way to improve sales by a very long way, and you have keyword content site wide too which shows exactly what we are about.

So, try adding some price ranges on the sidebar, it may give you some good longtail traffic and at the very least it gives the site searcher another way to buy the product if they do not click an in post link or above the fold text link.

This is often one of the first things a new site I make gets traffic for until things settle down and posts are crawled and indexed properly

Many wordpress themes have all manner of stuff in the footer: Click view and page source here and nearly the very last piece of text, also a link, are some good keywords and then the bot goes. Sure leave the link of the maker of the theme but add in your own too. Just another way to make sure that your site is known for your terms and it will certainly do no harm.

This may not be as important as once it was but we are not going to do any harm and it is certainly worth a try.

The problem as I see it is that too many people have been setting up these little sites only to totally get blasted from the serps.

Game over for that one for many it seems.

Let’s give some love instead.

Let’s nurture our websites and really make them something worthwhile. Why not take some time to make it look good, add convenient links for the visitors and for gods sake let them buy what they came looking for. WordPress is a great medium to use in a variety of ways and is easy for quickly adding content. But they do not have to look like blogs.

If we want to sell a small range of products then do we really think that the searcher wants to actually read about your nonsense about buy buy buy. Sure, many approaches mean that the content is all important. When we are talking about a review or why a certain something is the best possible thing for the problem.

But in many cases the model is to rank for a keyword where someone wants to buy something. Allow them to leave your site before they even see your daft and boring post. They simply want to get something for a good price. These sites work well as they offer up as soon as possible what the searcher came for.

I have a number of different approaches to making money from afifliate sales, and often it is giving opinions about what is the best product and why. These work great and should be a part of a site too. People compare products often and you should definitely take a look at your niche and write posts that compare x to y. And answer the question “What is the best……..?”

Get a good mix like that and your site will fly and eventually rank for a ton of great terms. Compare products explain why this is better than that, but always keep an eye on opportunities to allow someone to buy what they want as soon as possible.

Although off site work, i.e getting backlinks is the most important aspect and should take up most of your time let us not forget that on site work is crucial for getting conversions.

Why Some Sites Suck

Sometimes a rough and ready look is the way to go. Especially when we are selling products by giving personal experiences and making it more of a casual looking site where people buy because we have explained why something is so great.

But many people do not work like this. A site that has Amazon image and text boxes and some boring blog post and a poor theme will never convert the same as a site with a nice above the fold layout with links to buy in price ranges and then the article. Heck, I had one myself until the other day.

It never used to convert to sales to a made adsense above the fold and had nasty looking Amazon boxes on the side to pick up a few sales and to make it look more real.

The other day I re-designed the site. Got a nice theme, put links to Amazon above the fold for price ranges and a few categories, and then left adsense in a div wrap in the posts themselves. Not usually recommended but I never take my own advice anyway.

The result, it still makes $7 or so in adsense a day but also makes a sale or two most days as well. Lesson learned for me and shows why it is definitely worth experimenting.

You can listen to idiots like me all day long and—————–INTERRUPTION!

It was pointed out to me the other day that you lot are very naughty. Sure we all miss Grizzly, I owe him my whole online life really as I was lost before I found him. But it was pointed out to me that the only reason you lot read this site is because you love the excuse, just as I did, to read a long article and not get back to work.

Grizzly where have you gone?

He will be back but don’t forget that it is work that makes the money. You may pick up a few tips here and use the link at the bottom to give me a tip (you better) but the fact is that this has probably taken a good part of your work time to read. And you will often maybe read parts more than once. This is fun for me and I have done my work, just make sure that you do too. Maybe it is better if you bookmark this post on a do-follow site and return to it later? That would be nice wouldn’t it? Just a suggestion 😉

I ain’t no Grizz you know, you are better off reading his stuff if you have already made your money for the day———————–END OF INTERRUPTION

while the advice may be helpful it should never be taken as gospel. I say use affiliate programs or adsense and then go on to say that on a site I use both.

Well, it has been through a few stages. Affiliate stuff only with one network, it never converted, adsense and ugly Amazon links, did quite well, a nice look with Amazon text links above the fold and adsense in post, double your money. Keep trying different things and see what works the best, don?t listen to muppets telling you it has to be one way. You may just hit on the perfect formula for conversions and sales and make some serious money. Or not, which is what usually happens to me.

Bottom line is if your niche does well then get the site looking the best it can and get some new sites up to hone in on the sub niches and rank for those keywords. Ideally with a reseller account so you get a few different IPs but at least with another hosting account. Or a Hubpage that you put some serious work in to. But owning your own properties is much better, why rent when the whole thing could come crashing down at any moment. Squidoo took a beating, it seems that at least now in late June there is some weird stuff happening with Infobarrel which I hope is temporary, but invest your time with sites you own. If you make $4 a day then it is time for new hosting so you can give yourself some proper backlinks. 1 day from the months earnings is worth it. Guys I know it seems like I am after you using my affiliate links to get hosting and I am, but it is the truth as well. I put it off for so long and I could kick myself. I could have made my online content more secure in case something happened to one hostign company and for the same work and $4 a month I could have gotten better quality backlinks too. Just being honest here.

So, a few tips to improve your site by making it get the right longtails by adding prices and a good set of keywords. Make it look right and conversion will go up. Add price ranges and you will get longtails for them, use the site description properly. Work for a year and then you can retire.

But if you are writing 1 article a day and getting a couple of backlinks you are going to have a long wait. That is the reality. Work hours every day. If you can’t then work all weekend.

Story time (Goodie)

Up until late last year we were just ticking along. We were making some but nothing like we do now. We could eat and had a bit of cash but it was nothing to write home about. It had been a year since I first tried to look in to making money online. My partner had to go back to the UK for 3 months and left me alone with the 3 Dogs. Sad times at the end of 2008. Come 2009 and we had some sites but did not know what we were doing. It was probably April or maybe a bit before when I found Grizzly’s site.

What a relief. We built new sites, changed direction and began to make some progress but money was still a nightmare.

We had 1 old laptop and that was it. One of us had to get up at 6am to do work online until 1pm then the other had the laptop. We did it for probably 8 months or so until we could afford to buy 2 new laptops. Now we both work all day for 5 or so days a week.

The sites that make the most money are really less than or just about a year old. the 20 or so month sites get plenty of traffic but not for terms that make money. We did not know what we were doing. But if you have a solid basic understanding of simply picking a niche and following the advice that I have here and on a few other decent blogs then a year and you could see some serious financial return.

We worked with what we had but we worked hard. If you really want to quit a crap job then I say this:

Suck it up and get on with doing it.

I have mentioned before that some friends laughed at my gorgeous partner in life when she said I was looking in to making money on the Internet. Apparently they had tried it and you can’t make money online.

In your face.

Get a good looking site, do some proper work and you can live the rest of your life how you want. A year is a long time in Internet land. Our main earners are only that old. But we are two peopleworking every day.

But, we do not make money just to live on anymore. It is beginning to be weird.

I never imagined that I would ever have a job that involved me nipping out for a coffee on to my own land in Spain with an amazing view and not be worried just a little about money. Sure we had this place but it was going to be frugal living all the way.

I cannot tell you how pleased and happy it makes me to be able to simply tell my lady to pick up a nice new dress whenever she feels like it and yes you can buy that bloody expensive face cream (HOW MUCH!!!), and to feel like that is great.

So, a year even part time of a good few hours every day and the weekend if you have a job and things can be very different in a year. Very very different.

Up to you if it is worth the sacrifice.

Make them sites, make them look right for conversions. Test and test and never stop trying to see if you can get better conversions. Don’t listen to may advice, try something new and tell me so I can do it too. I am a noob after all.

But get them backlinks dudes. It is the way the game is played for now and when it changes we will too. Start slow, use all the usual resources then step it up and don?t forget that the best possible links are going to be from aged sites that you own in the same niche. So find a niche that makes some money and build it out.

Who says we need a hundred sites? Play it right and you will be spending most of your time on a couple of them once you find one that works. Why can’t you make your living from 2 or 3 sites? I see no reason why not. But begin a new one and build it a little just in case who knows what happens.

Add longtails to your site on the sidebars and the description. You find very few bloggers do this so get at it before everyone catches on. I know many are still on the mini site format and that is great if it works for you but think about something with a little more leeway and the chance to build in to a real authority too.

See you on the other side Dudes, I can tell you it seems to happen all of a sudden and when the bank balance is the right side of zero the motivation increases. To sum up in a sentence what took over 4000 words to write:

Um, build a site with good keyword rich post titles and get backlinks innit.

Should be all you need if you want to know how to rank better in Google.

  17 Responses to “How To Rank Better In Google”

  1. OK, I got to ask. Who is Grizzly??

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Cathy Grizzly is Da Man. Great honest advice and the best resource to learn how to make money with blogs and websites. I would recommend everyone read his site from the beginning, including the comments.

  2. Also, for your CJ sites do you just go through the advertisers “links” and add whatever you can find, or does CJ have some kind of functionality that I’m not aware of?

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    I pick an advertiser that runs in the niche I want and then use their product links, but if Amazon have it I will use them. Their trust makes them the first choice for me, everyone had heard of them so the conversion rate is better.

  3. I meant for your price range and category links you put in the side bar.

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Josh I just use a link to the product supplied by the advertiser and change the text of it to a price range or specific price. You can easily change the supplied html code to whatever text you want.

  4. Cathy:
    Google is your friend.

    Wow, I’m way impressed. One of your best. You really do have that work ethic. In particular, the biggest message people who want to make money on line (or those who want to move to the Philippines, or those who want to retire early, etc.) just never seem to get is … yes, you do have the time, but ‘the time’ is probably not sitting there empty waiting for you to use it … most likely something else (like watching Friends reruns, or even sleeping until 10am) will have to give.

    That’s just the long and the short of it … we all have the exact same amount of time as Steve Jobs or Bill Gates or even The Griz has, no more, no less … just have to decide the right way to spend it.

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Dave Starr that is exactly what we have learned. We worked out of sheer financial problems and it paid off. Maybe of others already have money to live on they will not be as motivated. But if you want to change your life then you have to work hard and make some short term sacrifices. Well worth it for a totally different way of life as far as I am concerned but I think most people fail to make good money online simply because they do not put in the required hours.

  5. Thanks for telling me about Grizzly’s blog. Wish he was still updating (last post was in April) it. He’s got some good info there.

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Yep Cathy, it really is a fantastic resource. If I had found that at the beginning I would have saved months of wasted time.

  6. Excellent post Dave. I have a site that is only 2 months old but is suddenly getting 30-50 visitors per day and making a couple of Amazon sales per day. Looks like it will make just under $100 this month. Not bad for a new site. Based on your post I just took the good looking, but totally unproductive amazon widget out fo my sidebar and put links by price, by brand, and by review type in the sidebar. Love the way it looks. As you say it looks more like a store. This is one of several Amazon sites I have started in the last couple of months, but it shows more promise by far than the others at this point. I have a bunch of adsense sites, both small and large. They made just under $1000 last month, but on June 3 google dumped rankings of all but 3 of them into oblivion. So adsense for June is less than $300. That was a big hit, and a big lesson about diversifying. Sorry to be so longwinded, but thanks for the good information. I love hearing success stories like yours, and you put all the “how to” stuff out there for us to chew on. Thank you!

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Hi John, that is going to be a great site if it is making that kind of money already. Nice one. It is always a great feeling when something new takes off like that.

    Sorry about the adsense sales, that sucks, but you are right, diversity is key to try to safeguard online earnings.

  7. Hi Dave,

    this was a great post… rants and all and I’ve picked up quite a few tips. Including the yelling to take action.

    A few weeks ago I decided to dive into IM and learn as much as possible to get going. I cam across your blog, Griz, Mike Iser and many more.

    Definitely want to thank you for the great resource & now it’s off to take some massive action.

    – TRENDS

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Hi Trends,

    Rants? Moi?

    Good luck Dude, put in the work and the world is your mollusc.

  8. When doing your internal linking, do you add them as you are writing the posts for your site? Or do you wait until your internal pages have some PR before you decide to interlink?

    Maybe it doesn’t make a difference but thought that Amazon Dave might have the answer.

    Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    Andy at the moment I am doing internal linking as I go for new sites. But once they rank I will go back in to them and do more. I like to let Google pick what it wants an article to rank for and then add some internal links to it. Often it ranks posts that are not what I initially wanted to rank for. I then write a new post with the keywords that the other article ranked for, interlink the two and get a good ‘ole double listing. I am currently trying to get rankings by pointing lots of internal links to one post to see what happens, but on a week old site so nothing happening yet.

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