Thursday, January 1, 2015

Pigeon Unrolled in Canada on December 22

The Pigeon has Landed

Pigeon is sitting on head of statute that looks troubled.

Those who know me know I always follow ranking closely, an understatement, since really I'm obsessed with it. It's no surprise then that on December 22, 2014, I noticed right away that most of my sites and client sites had changed ranking in local listings. One of my client sites went from 6th in ranking to 1st organically and to 2nd on the map from 3rd.  Another went 2nd on the map to 1st and 2nd organically.  Another went from the 2nd page to first organically.  Another finally showed up on the map for a keyword.  The SERPs they were a-changing.  So many changed that I knew something major was afoot (should I say awing? Lol.)  I suspected that Google's Pigeon update had just landed in Canada. (And no, I don't mean or am misspelling Penguin, this is a totally different bird and Google update.) Pigeon had unrolled in the US in July and was due to unroll in other English-speaking countries as in Canada, UK and Australia sometime this last fall. Even though I suspected Pigeon right away, I couldn't find confirmation of it online for a few days except for a few random rumblings and tweets from others suspecting the same thing.

Most of my sites went up luckily and only a couple went down on the Google local listings with Pigeon so I was pretty happy. Yet local listings themselves had also changed and in places quite dramatically. Where once seven businesses had been listed on the first page in Google results for certain queries, now were only three. Some search queries even lost their local listing packs completely.

Here is an example of a seven pack listing for the query "Calgary computer repair" previous to the changes:

Now the listings are in a three pack:

As you see can above only three businesses are listed for the same query where before there were seven.  If  your company was number four to seven on the local listings map, it now didn't show at all.

Finally I saw this post on Blumenthal's blog confirming my hunch.  (By the way, if you want to learn more about local search Blumenthal's is the blog to read.) Yes, Pigeon had unrolled! Now local search in Canada is very different and, a week and a half later, still seems to be unsettled and in a bit of turmoil, the site listings shuffling around in ranking and in and out of the smaller three packs.

For more in depth information about Pigeon in general, read this post from Search Engine Land.

If you want to improve local search ranking for your website, Ducktoes SEO can help.  As you can see above we are number one for an important and competitive query.  We can help you achieve similar results.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Penguin Unrolled, Finally!

On October 17, 2014 Penguin unrolled again finally. This one is being called Penguin 3.0.  If you used the disavow tool and used it correctly then you'll find your poor ranking has improved or is improving.  If you had a lot of bad links or too high of percentage of keyword-rich anchor text, your ranking may have gone down.  Clients who turned to me for Penguin penalty recovery are now back on the first page.

Here is an infograhic from a great post about recovering from Penguin penalties.  It's from Ahref''s blog.  Ahref is a tool that I find very useful for finding and analysing backlinks.

This infographic is from

Google Penguin Penalty Recovery

If you want to discuss this or have an observation that is relevant, please leave a comment.  All comments that are just their for a link, will be deleted. Thank you.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

This is the End (of Yahoo Directory)

Yahoo Directory to Close

Yahoo announced on it Tumblr site that it is going to close the Yahoo Directory.

This is what the report says, "Yahoo was started nearly 20 years ago as a directory of websites that helped users explore the Internet. While we are still committed to connecting users with the information they’re passionate about, our business has evolved and at the end of 2014 (December 31), we will retire the Yahoo Directory. Advertisers will be upgraded to a new service; more details to be communicated directly."

Since I usually recommend to my clients that they buy a listing in Yahoo directory to help improve traffic and exposure to their web content, now I want to wait until December 31, 2014 and see what the new advertising will be like before recommending it.

In the meantime I still recommend Best of the Web and Dmoz directories. I met the Best of the Web directory representatives at Pubcon and they are a great company and reputable, effective directory.  I'm now a Dmoz editor, just learning the ropes and am really happy about that.

In the meantime if you want to get on the waiting list to be a Ducktoes internet marketing client, contact me.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Directories can be Problematic

Directories can be problematic in SEO.  You don't want to be listed in spammy, low-ranking ones. Even high ranking ones can be devalued or penalized by Google and end up being low ranking or toxic. Sometimes the directory owners, especially the owners of penalized directories, ignore your request for removal or make it impossible to request it, and then you have to disavow them.

Local directories are good to submit to.  They help you rank organically and on the local Google map for your search terms.  Woorank has an excellent list of local Canadian directories that I refer to as a resource all the time.  They also have local directories for the US and other countries.

As I have said in previous posts, Yahoo Directory, DMOZ, and Best of the Web directories are all high ranking and safe.  DMOZ is free but difficult to get into.  Yahoo Directory and Best of the Web are not free.  You can buy Best of the Web for half-price ($150 for life) the Monday after Thanksgiving, that is US Thanksgiving. Yahoo Directory is $300 for one year.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Hey, I Did It: Ducktoes Site makes Dmoz!!!

Hey, I did it.  I got my site listed on  This is almost impossible these days, since it is ridiculously hard to get a listing there.  For those who don't know, it's the directory to get into, a goal worthy of achieving. Go to this page and you can see my site listed.  You can also see the listing itself on its own.  I must be doing something right. They spelled my company name a bit wrong (it should be one word instead of Duck Toes) but I'm over the moon or maybe I should say "Over the Rainbow." This is how I'm feeling:

This is a photo from my balcony in Calgary.

Now I'll try to list all my clients on dmoz.  If you want to get in on the action go to my website and check out my services.  Next month I'm going to stop taking clients for a bit so don't wait too long.  I'm getting too many. I mean SEO clients not computer repair or web design.  I don't have time for more SEO clients.

Here's another post about Dmoz Directory (and Yahoo.)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Squidoo to Go Away and Delete (or Transfer) All Your Content!

This is just in.  I went to my Squidoo site to work on my lenses and found out that Squidoo is closing.  What a shock. This is the message:
Squidoo is shutting down

You have a couple of weeks, almost, to move your content to Hubpages or it will all be transferred automatically.  All content will be deleted in October. Yikes.  I have several lenses that I've made for my clients and myself on Squidoo which has been an excellent site until now.  There's a lot of work however I stand to lose if I don't move it. Some of my lenses are great and others are still works in progress, soon to be greater.  They'll have to be greater Hubpages now.  Squidoo has been frustrating lately since some lenses would unpublish without any reason and then I'd have to spend time getting them republished. This was a minor inconvenience compared what this news means.  Now I have to move all the Squidoo content to Hubpages.

I tried the transfer button button as shown above but since I already have a Hubpages account it says my user name already in use. Of course it is.  There should be a way of moving to an existing account. Maybe I'll move them manually.  I hope I don't get flagged for duplicate content since the content is already on Squidoo, if only temporarily.

I wonder if some people who are not be paying attention to their lenses or are on summer vacation will try to log in and find all their content transferred automatically.  

I was planning on writing a blog post this weekend about using Squidoo or Hubpages as an SEO strategy. Creating Web 2.0 sites IS an acceptable white hat way of a creating a good link if you do it right. The Squidoo lens or Hubpage needs to be well-written original content.  No spinning or duplicate content is tolerated and will cause trouble for you.  Duplicate content isn't fair to the original writer.  Photos and other images spruce it up.  There shouldn't keyword stuffing or too many links to your site.  Creating Hubpages and other 2.0 sites is a lot of work for just a couple of links and some are "no followed" but it is great for traffic and an SEO boost. People link to your Hubpage and your Hubpage links to your site and it is all great organic natural linking happening for you.   

Here's a Hubpage I created:

I'm proud of this Hubpage.  I think it is gorgeous

If you would like Ducktoes to create Hubpages for your company's internet marketing, our web design team does content creation.  We can also help your transfer your Squidoo lenses.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Creating Video Content for your Clients

Filmmaking at Ducktoes Computer Services

A really good way to get more traffic and higher ranking is to create video content for your clients and yourself.  Google loves high-quality content created to help users find information.  This is potent seo for your website or sites.

You can do this a pretty low cost if you do the following:

What you need to do:

  1. Find a filmmaker who specializes in videos for businesses and hire him or her for a morning or day.  This way you'll able to get a discount for your clients since the filmmaker doesn't have to move equipment or drive around and has instant business without advertising. 
  2. Prepare your clients ahead of time. Ask the filmmaker for the questions, he or she will be asking. Email the clients the questions they will be asked so they can prepare their thoughts.  Don't let them memorize or read from notes because that will often provide a stilted conversation on the video. 
  3. Bring in your clients by appointment and let the filmmaker film them.   
  4. Put the videos on the clients' websites and on Youtube.  This makes great content, which Google loves. 

Video production of content is a win-win-win for everyone involved: for the clients, the filmmaker, and you.

If you would like a video for your website or business, click here.