I was talking with Julian Chadwick of PDXPipeline this Monday about the tools he uses for search engine optimization. We recorded a podcast that will be posted Monday night on Hazelnut Tech Talk. However I wanted to pass on some of the information he gave me regarding the SEO plugins he uses for Firefox. I’d like to review the SEO Quake, as it has been very useful to me.
There are a few baseline pieces of baseline information that any SEO beginner. One of these is Page Rank, or Google’s consideration of what a given page is worth. Page rank varies from site to site, and there are a number of factors that contribute to pagerank. One of them is the amount of websites linking to a given website. This is called ‘inlinks’. One can find out this information by going to Google and entering the string “link:http://www.yoursite.com”.
The amount of links from a site to you website show up differently in Yahoo! Search vs. Google search vs. MSN. Obtaining this data takes a while without a good tool to help you find it. There are additional metrics one can find about a site, such as the page rank, sitemap, alexa rank, and whether the site has been indexed in search engines or not. Site indexing is different from checking inlinks.
If the pages of your site are not indexed by search engines, it is difficult for searchers to find them. Making sure your website has a sitemap and submitting it to Google Webmaster tools is an essential baseline step in the SEO process. You can generate an .xml sitemap for free by using the free tool provided at XML-Sitemaps.com.
SEO Quake for Firefox
SEO Quake is a plugin that adds another layer of information on top of your brower’s basic information. Instead of having to search for inlinks, the inlinks are displayed right on top of the site for you. You can also choose what information you want displayed about the site. There are plenty of options (accessible from preferences) that allow you to view any information you want about the page you’re on. There are Yahoo! inlinks, links to domain, Alexa rank, Page Rank, inlinks from MSN, compete rank, sitemap, and the robots.txt file, just to name a few.
Using SEO Quake rocks. It’s super-customizable and generates a ton of rich information without the need to click. Plus, you can click on the information and download into a spreadsheet or text document for later use or data analysis. Highly recommended.
This is a link to the download site for SEO Quake. Again, it is only available for Firefox browsers, so if you aren’t using Firefox (which you most undoubtedly should), then you’ll be missing out.
For more information on SEO, Julian and I both recommend SEOMoz.org, a Seattle-based company providing an extremely comprehensive database of resources and tools for beginner, intermediate, and advanced SEO specialists. Try the free Trifecta tool on your site for starters.