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Why is my website being outranked by a low quality site?

A question we hear all too often here at B*Different HQ. Why is my page rank 6 homepage being outranked by this old page rank 3 website?  

To start at the beginning too many people look at Page Rank, Domain Authority, Page Authority and even inbound link numbers as the be all and end all of their search engine optimisation (SEO) tactics. All of these are important elements but on their own they mean nothing.

Page Rank is what Google uses to determine the importance of a web page, It was developed at Stanford University by Google founders Larry Page (who it assumed to be named after) and Sergey Brin. Page Rank uses links as votes, and every unique link to a web page from another is counted as a vote in that pages favour.  That should mean that a website with the most links should just rank number one organically shouldn’t it?

Well no… With the evolution of SEO over the years, there has always been black hat SEO’s looking to rank quick and fast by any means possible, Keyword Stuffing, Directory Links, Spam Comments, Link Farms, Link buying and Selling whatever it took they did it.

Google are constantly updating their ranking algorithm to make sure that they serve the user the most relevant content. Over the last two years Google Panda and Google Penguin have been hard at work making sure that these manipulative strategies won’t work, when it comes to ranking.

Google’s ranking algorithms take over 200 ranking factors into consideration and is constantly being refreshed. For all the factors we know about there are 10 others that they keep to themselves.

There is no magic trick to ranking your website at number one in Google, but fresh relevant content that adheres to the Google Webmaster guidelines is the only way in which to do it long term, so next time you get an email offering you the number one spot on google for €99 a month or 500 backlinks for €45 just press delete and save your website and yourself from the stresses of getting knocked out of Google Results.

For a brief look into some of the Ranking Factors we know Google use check out this cool info graphic from the team at Search Engine Land.

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Social Platform Phlok to create 100 jobs with $600,000 investment

Phlok Helping People Shop Local!

 

Irish owned Social Platform Phlok, are delighted to announce the creation of 100 new jobs over the coming 18 months following investment of $600,000.

With the investment of $600,000 from private and institutional investors, Phlok will be recruiting over 100 new staff in the areas of Software Development, Sales, Training and Account Management over the coming months across the island of Ireland.

Phlok is a unique rewards platform that offers end-users the opportunity to earn virtual currency as they interact with businesses on Phlok. Paul Graham (CEO) said, “Gaining these investors allows us to execute on our vision to assist local businesses to attract consumers back to their main streets.  Phlok’s goal is to connect local businesses with local people incentivising consumers to Shop Local.

 

Having launched just six months ago Phlok has already gained 300 businesses throughout Ireland including shops, restaurants, bars, off licenses, pharmacies, coffee shops, car dealerships, clothes retailers and even clairvoyants. Phlok businesses have already witnessed in excess of €200,000 worth of sales and over 10,000,000 social media impressions occur through Phlok’s innovative platform.

A unique social media concept, Phlok is the new web and smartphone platform that incentivises consumers with virtual currency (Phlok points), collectable and spendable with any business on the Phlok network. Businesses worry less about their social media presence as their customers are promoting them when collecting their Phlok points and consumers gain more than Phlok points, they are exposed to exclusive promotions that local businesses can target them with from time to time. The innovation with Phlok is the ability to collect immense value as a consumer without it costing any individual business more than a few cents. Phlok points accumulate extremely quickly and can become quite addictive, bringing people back to Main Street more often. 

Paul added “We established Phlok to be the key digital incentive platform and become pervasive in the marketplace. Phlok is becoming an additional integral element of the business to business and business to consumer economy.  Our overall aim is to get local customers to transact more often with local business and support an ongoing vibrant community. Phlok makes the term ‘Shop Local’ make sense

The impact that Phlok can have on a business is extremely measurable. Phlok’s Business Control Panel gives simple to use and vital information on the people that have connected with them on the Phlok platform. Not only, can they see who is connected to them, but they get visibiity of key consumer data based on spending habits with the ability to communicate individually or by demographic group when encouraging them to try their service or product.

Phlok is not targeted at a specific demographic, in the past six months statistics have shown a range of user profiles expanding across all ages, professions and geographical areas.Phlok uses virtual currency incentives to make social media easy and profitable for businesses giving consumers a reason to shop local.

To download Phlok, click here

Phlok for business, click here 

To visit the main Phlok website, click here 

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KickStarting 21st Century Patronage with Kickstarter

The greatest artists of history required the financial assistance of the wealthy when they wanted to undertake projects. Fast forward centuries and how do modern-day innovators fund their work? Well, there’s a site for that. That site is the four year old KickStarter. It is the new facilitator in canvassing people for money in backing your proposed project. You create a page with your proposal, the amount you are targeting to collect and date by which you want to collect it by. If visitors to the site have not pledged the complete target amount by your proposed date, then the project is cancelled and the creators receive no money.

The creator who proposed the project retains 100% ownership. Why do people support such projects and initiatives when they do not receive any shareholding in the company themselves? It is quite simple. In most scenarios the pledger may just receive an early copy of the album if they have supported an artist, or a discounted unit of the product if they back an engineer. Sometimes it is products that visitors to the site wish to see created and will gladly support its development in the hope of the product being brought to market. Once such example of this type of project is the Pebble Watch. This watch is the most supported venture ever on the KickStarter site, with the project having over $10,250,000 pledged from 68,928 visitors to the site. This is far greater than the relatively smaller sum of $100,000 that the creators originally targeted to collect.

This new form of crowd sourcing could be the way forward for anyone looking to fund any ideas, but the reach of such sites comes at a cost. Traditionally you may have been able to cross the street if someone was looking for funding, but now they can send you the link anywhere and at anytime. Not only that, but one may also receive a large number of requests from connections in your network that you may not know very well from all over the globe.

There is also the perceived lack of control by site management over what appears on the site and what happens to the money that has been raised. The creator could easily just used the money to go on holidays. There is no assurance that the cash will be used responsibly or efficiently or at all. The site also charges a 5% administration fee, excluding the 3-5% additional charge that Amazon charges to process the money. A 10% collectors fee is still better than the assignment not starting at all due to cash flow difficulties.

With the site’s vices in mind, it is still difficult to ignore the impact it is having and its potential into the future. KickStater claims that over 4.3 million people have pledged over $670 million, but we don’t know what proportion of this figure has been passed onto project creators.

Also striking is the power of the cumulative help of modern day patrons. Similar to Obama’s election fundraising strategy, it may be more beneficial to have many smaller donators rather than a limited number of larger givers.

So it’s the working class helping first time artists and developers? Well, not in all cases. For example Zach Braff , star of the hit TV sitcom Scrubs, raised over $3.1 million dollars for his film “Wish I was Here”. Braff has an estimated net worth of $22 million so it really proves that the site is open to all. Celebrities like Braff, and others with large social media following, can really effectively raise money.

With Braff passionately supporting  KickStarter, and with other well-known faces almost certain to utilize the sites tools in the future, it would appear that the sites success and popularity is only set to rise. So why don’t you post that project that you’ve always wanted to complete but never had the support of the cash? If you do, please send us on a link so we can help you in your efforts. 

About The Author: 

Shane McCarthy Business Information Systems student in University College Cork. 

Shane can be found tweeting from @TechShane and is always open to chats about business and technology! 

Check out his Webasite, Twitter and linkedin

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Part 3: A Need to BDifferent – Claremorris Colts RFC

As the season entered the home straight we were about to have our biggest moment as a club to date. Firstly our girls were chosen as the Connacht representative to attend the Aviva mini rugby festival in Ashbourne, Co. Meath. In a truly magical day our girls were fantastic in the way they conducted themselves on and off the pitch. Then in early April our secretary got a letter to say we were one of three nominations for Connacht rugby club of the year for the 2011/12 season.

To say we were shocked was an understatement, however although we were nominated we really didn’t think we would win as other nominees Connemara RFC & Loughrea RFC were more established than us and surely in our view in with a better chance of winning.

A wedding on the same night meant I was unable to attend the black tie affair in the Connemara Coast Hotel however when the phone rang at approx 11pm I knew from the crackling voice on the other end we had done it. Connacht rugby club of the year in our third season WOW!

As the season wound down things got even busier for us in the committee room. Recently we acquired 5 acres of land in town and we knew we had to put a plan together to fund the development of the grounds.  George Hook agreed to broadcast his Newstalk show the Right Hook live from the McWilliam Park hotel Claremorris. We then held the launch of our pitch development fundraiser that night in the McWilliam. The following day we planned a scrum clinic for local coaches,  truly was a rugby first for the West of Ireland.

So the Newstalk crew rolled into Claremorris on the Friday afternoon with George all set to do his thing. Club chairman Fergal Leonard and yours truly even got 10 minutes on air with the gregarious broadcaster to help spread the rugby gospel country wide.

It didn’t stop there however as later that night came the launch of the ‘Buy a Sod’ campaign. The draw was launched by a who’s who of the rugby world including, George Hook , ex Irish international Jim Glennon, current Connacht captain and Mayo man Gavin Duffy, world renowned scrum coach the great Roly Meates and ex Connacht, Munster and Wasps man Peter Bracken. The idea of the night was to boost the profile locally and help generate some sales. As the night went on the four post squares were auctioned off to crowd who had assembled.  The auctioneer for the night was Jim Glennon who judging by his performance certainly has a backup career if he ever gives up the day job. It was a fantastic night for all involved with the club.

The club also received a huge surprise on the night when local women Liz Killeen presented the club with an Ireland jersey signed by the grand slam winning squad of 2009 on behalf or her cousin John ‘The Bull’ Hayes who could not attend on the night, but promised to give the Claremorris Colts ‘New Field’ the once over once it was up and running.

The fun didn’t stop there as the Mayo club had an even bigger day planned for Saturday. We organised a Scrum Clinic and invited every club in Connacht to send their youth rugby coaches along to the clinic and hear the rugby bible according to Roly Meates. We also organised a Family Day and invited all locals to come and watch the scrum clinic and enjoy the activities such as bouncy castles, face painting, a BBQ and many others.

There was a fantastic turnout with over 70 coaches from across Connacht learning from Roly Meates, George Hook and Peter Bracken. Roly Meates gave a master class in how to coach the scrum and I can certainly say that every coach learned something new from the great man. There were also an army of parents and helpers on hand to ensure everything ran smoothly on the day and more importantly everybody got fed and watered. This was a truly magical rugby weekend from a fledging club and we now plan to build on this success and know we must continue to grow if Claremorris RFC are to have a home of their own in the very near future.

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Appy Monday – SwiftKey Keyboard

This week I downloaded the SwiftKey Keyboard as it was half price (€1.99) in the Google Play store. For a long time I have had issues using the standard issue keyboard on my Samsung Galaxy. Many people have texted me back acknowledging my badly predicted words, mixed up spelling and general confusion of my seemingly encrypted messages. According to the reviews on the Google Play store Swiftkey Keyboard was going to be the answer to my problems.

SwiftKey is currently the Google Play Editors’ Choice app and number one in the paid app category. What makes this keyboard different from the many others available is the apps capability of understanding not just the patterns in your typing style, but also how different words work together. Swiftkey Keyboard is weirdly accurate at predicting the next word in your sentences giving you a choice of three words on top of the keyboard to save you typing it out. The more you use Swiftkey the more accurate it gets learning from your use of words in email, texts and social media.

One of the best features of the Swiftkey app is its Flow technology, flow allows you to input words by holding your finger down and dragging it along the screen like swype. Flow allows you to continue typing even inputting spaces so you can type multiple words with out lifting your finger from the screen, this can be tricky at first but after a while you will gain some speed and will be sending your messages as quick, but more accurately than ever.

I was so happy with this app, that i actually just typed this blog post using it! You can download SwiftKey from Google Play Store Here

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Perfect Image Sizes for Facebook Pages

 

Cover Photo:

The ideal size for uploading a Cover photo to Facebook is 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall. If you upload cover photo that is smaller than 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall, the image will get stretched to these dimentions losing quality and appearing blurry.

Profile Picture:

The image uploaded as a profile picture needs to be 180 pixels wide by 180 pixels tall or larger, Facebook will shrink the picture to 160 x 160 pixels with a 5 pixel white border surrounding the image

Timeline Photo

Photos uploaded to your timeline are automaticly sized to 403 pixels by 403 pixels, images larger than this are automaticly sized down for this reason we recommened uploading images at 806 pixels by 806 pixels.

Images smaller than 403 pixels by 403 pixels are streached to fit. Larger images are shown on the timeline at 403 pixels by 403 pixels. They are shown centered which may mean a message may be lost by been cut off.

 

Timeline Photo Hilighted

If you wish to highlight an image on your timeline upload it at 843 pixels by 403 pixels otherwise the image will be resized and will not display as uploaded.

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Polish Theatre Ireland trying to BDifferent with Fundit

Fundit is an all Ireland crowdfunding website started with the aim of helping Ireland’s creative minds make their projects happen. Project creators on Fundit set a funding goal and deadline. If people like a project, they can pledge money to make it happen in return for a tangible reward. 

Today we talk to the Polish Theatre Ireland who have turned to Fundit to try get their production of Foreign Bodies up on stage!

The Polish Theatre Ireland have decided to put a campaign on FundIt to help fund their newest production Foreign Bodies due to the lack of funding. They hope to raise €1500 in seven days in order to cover the costs of author’s copyrights, set materials, props, costumes, transport and printing of the scripts and promotional materials.

PTI is a theatre group formed in 2008 and and that are producing shows that are accessible for both Polish and Irish audiences. They are always trying to bring socially engaged productions, constantly searching for new audiences. PTI treat theatre not only as a form of artistic expression but also as a way of social debate and bridge of the cultural divides, which means that they want people to react and discuss social affairs with them. The Polish Theatre Ireland want to intertwine Polish and Irish theatre making and to merge two qualities: Irish theatre system with the nature of Polish drama. The goal is to create a new voice in the Irish cultural scene. They also provide a platform for Polish immigrants to have a place in the Irish cultural sector befitting their skill, expertise and experience.

Foreign Bodies is based on a script written by a Polish playwright Julia Holewinska and translated by Artur Zapalowski (one of the most recognised translators of Polish dramas into English). The play has been acknowledged by the Gdynia Drama Award committee as the best Polish drama in 2010. With the help of the online community through Fundit It will be presented in the Project Arts Centre from 22nd July and 3rd August 2013.

For more information check out The Polish Theatre Ireland on Fundit visit Facebook or The PTI Website

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A start up that needed to BDifferent – Claremorris Colts RFC Part 2

 
After the excitement of George Hook paying we knew we needed to continue our momentum and ensure that we were still doing things a little differently from the other clubs around us. 
 
We did this by securing a visit from the Heineken cup trophy. After of number of weeks nagging the Leinster branch they relented and let us have the trophy for the weekend. As per usual it was rainy Saturday morning on the pitch but that didn’t stop everyone enjoying themselves. The cup got passed from small hands to big and back again as everyone wanted to get their pictures taken with the famous trophy. The biggest concern some players had with it was why we couldn’t fill the trophy with coke. Once training was over the cup got brought from house to house many locals wanted to get a snap with the trophy, I’d hate to imagine the amount of car boots the trophy was in over the course of the weekend.
 
The season rolled on and we did quite well in a number of Connacht blitz’s however a notable achievement was just around the corner. It may have been Grand National day in England but the Claremorris Colts U10 team had their own race to run as they headed to An Cheathrú Rua for the Connemara cup and like the race across the water the outsider came out on top by the smallest of margins as U10’s won the first trophy in the history of Claremorris Colts RFC.The final itself without doubt the tightest game of the day with both teams not giving an inch. It was clear both teams didn’t want to lose and as the game entered the final moments neither team could be separated but all that was about to change. After been camped on the An Ghealtacht line Kyle Leonard somehow spotted the smallest of gaps and wriggled his way over to win the cup for the Mayo men. The roar that greeted the final whistle must surely have been heard across the Atlantic Ocean as the cup was heading out of Galway for the first time. Each and every player and their coaches Eddie McLoughlin and Fergal Leonard can be very proud of the display of rugby that was produced on a historic day for the us. Next up a Connacht club award and some rugby legends…
 
Claremorris Colts RFC can be found online here for more information and training times contact Paul Cunnane

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#jobfairy

#JobFairy #InternFairy

 

With so many people asking us about jobs and internships we decided to put a resource together to help people find the perfect Marketing and Tech jobs. to add your job listing contact lisa@bdifferent.ie

#JobFairy

Digital Marketing Executive – West Dublin 

Copy & Community Manager – Dublin 

Marketing Executive – Grand Canal Hotel Dublin 

Content Manager SEO – Groupon Dublin  – For more Groupon Jobs click here

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Appy Monday – Sonic The Hedgehog

 

Searching through the Google Play store over the weekend I thought all my Christmases had come at once when I came across Sonic the Hedgehog as the number 4 paid app. Retailing at just €2.85 (€2.69 on iTunes) it was a steal for 90’s gaming addicts such as myself! Sonic was the preferred game of my childhood. We were a Sega Mega Drive family, My boyfriend’s a Nintendo/Mario man! This game is sure to keep us occupied for a few hours.

The original Sonic The Hedgehog was released on the SEGA Mega Drive in 1991, the game including sound track has been completely remastered for mobile, with new additional features that include widescreen support with a frame speed of 60 frames per second, as well as access to online leaderboards, achievements and a time trial mode. Another great addition to the game is the ability to play as Tails and Sonic after unlocking with sonic first.

Download from Google Play Store Here or Download from iTunes Here

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Young Irish Entrepreneurs Spotlight – Jean Kennedy

Young Irish entrepreneur Jean Kennedy from County Laois answered a few questions for B*Different on what appearing on Junior Dragons Den with Scr!bble TimeTable Pen has done for her and her business.

How was your business doing before appearing on Junior Dragons Den?

I set up Scr!bble in 2011 with four close friends as part of the Student Enterprise Awards in our Transition Year Program. This project gave me the chance to experience entrepreneurship and test out my product which proved to be a great success. Scr!bble was awarded best innovative idea in Laois and as the inventor I was so proud to have succeeded in transforming a simple idea into a profit making product.

I came up with my idea while I was walking through a stall at the National Ploughing Championships 2011. I was given a promotional pen, which contained a scroll advertising this company’s service. In school the next day there were many students who had got the gadget and were using it to write with.

I had been planning on coming up with a product for students as I knew what problems we faced on an every day to day basis and as I could easily sell them at school. I decided to adapt the banner pen idea to create a product that helped students and even teachers keep themselves organised throughout the week, The Timetable Pen.

My first order was for 1000 pens. Our mini company team sold this batch to students and teachers in my area, through sports teams, youth clubs, basically by word of mouth. By the end of our school year, the mini company project ended and we were all thrilled to have each received some wages for working hard all year. During that summer I decided I’d like to continue with this product, the problem was I had no more stock, that’s when I saw the advertisement for ‘budding entrepreneurs’ to apply for Junior Dragons Den. The €2000 bursary could get my company back up and running. And so it did, Scr!bble is now a sole trader company selling to students and teachers throughout the nation.

How has the show helped you?

The journey from filling out my Junior Dragons Den application form to pitching my business to the Dragons is without doubt an experience that I will never forget. I remember seeing the advert for ‘budding entrepreneurs’ to apply for The Den if ‘you’ve got what it takes to face The Dragons’. It was the day before the closing date and I was just home from work, I love a good challenge so I decided I’d apply and put my previous transition year mini company idea forward and hope for the best.

All of a sudden I found myself telling top business men and women all about my company at the Regional and National finals of the JDD selections. I loved every minute, answering questions, getting people’s point of view about the product and meeting other talented junior entrepreneurs. It was a great opportunity to find out more about the world of business and how it works, what type of a personality you need to be successful in business and also how important contacts are!

I was in school when I received the email to say I had been picked from the National finals to pitch my business idea to the Dragons. It really is a once in a life time opportunity standing in front of five top business people and pitching my idea not only to those millionaires, but to the entire nation. And of course, I was super excited to be on the television!

The weeks seemed to fly by and before I knew it I was standing at the bottom of the famous stair case casually chatting to one of the filming crew. I was so calm until I managed to reach the top of the staircase and then, it all hit me! I stepped inside ‘The Den’ (which is a lot bigger and intimidating than it looks on TV) and made strong eye contact with ‘The Dragons’. I introduced myself, I began my pitch and I honestly cannot remember one thing that happened after that! The combination of adrenalin and nerves just overwhelmed me, it felt great. I came back to reality as I shook hands with Gavin Duffy and Sean O’Sullivan, after sealing the deal. I was so happy I could have kissed them but I managed to contain myself until I got back out to my parents! I was so grateful to have gotten the chance to be part of this series ‘Dragons Den’. I learned so much about myself as an individual and how important it is to work hard in life if you want success, The Dragons are all so inspirational to me!

I would certainly recommend other entrepreneurs to apply for Dragon’s Den in the future. It’s a brilliant way to get your company up and running especially in the current economic climate. Not only do you learn more about your business and get to expand your ideas but you also get to meet other companies and make some great friends and connections in the world of business!

What have you done since the show?

I have been very busy since the screening of Junior Dragons Den, I have set up an online store where students and teachers everywhere can order pens via PayPal and have them posted to their home. There was over 2000 hits on my website the night the show was aired, which proves how beneficial business screen time is. I have spent a lot of time approaching businesses who would be interested in advertising their company on the opposite side of the timetable pen, I do all of the graphic designing on the banner myself so I spend most nights on the computer working on them or filling out orders. I am currently focusing on the marketing side of my company as it’s getting close to the ‘back to school season’ and retailers will be particularly interested in my product during these months. Bank of Ireland has also recently held their ‘National Enterprise Week’ where I launched my new 2013 stock, sponsored by Bank of Ireland.

What are your plans for the next year?

I am lucky that the majority of my product selling is done during the summer time/ back to school season, it means that the company isn’t too time consuming while I study for the Leaving Cert, within the next year I want to see teachers and students all around the country using their timetable pen to help them adapt to their new timetable routine. I’d also love to get involved with colleges and universities around Ireland.

My target market is first year students as they find the timetable pen particularly useful as they make the transition from primary to secondary school. It takes time for them to adapt to the hectic school timetable routine, their Scr!bble pen is an essential survival gadget! I will be busy with college over the next few years so I probably won’t expand my company product until I have time to put all my energy and work into it. For now I’m concentrating on getting my first product out on the market. The Timetable Pen, The Original! 

For more information see: Facebook  Twitter  Google+ or The Timetable Pen Website

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Google’s Matt Cutts – Common mistakes made with the Disavow Tool

 

 

Matt Cutts, head of the Google Webspam team released this video today discussing some of the most common mistakes people make when using the disavow tool in Google webmaster tools. 

Google launched the disavow tool last October. It’s primary goal was to help website owners who were impacted by Google’s Penguin Update, an update which focused on paid and spammy links. Another use for the disavow tool was to combat negative SEO – to help innocent webmasters targeted with paid links by competitors. 

Matts video today focus’s on the main mistakes Google see:

  • Upload a plain TXT file only as files can be rejected when people upload Microsoft Word and Excel spreadsheets.
  • On first request users are often too specific with links, trying to disavow a link from a certain page on a website when they should disavow links from the whole website, this can be done by using domain:nameofsite.com 
  • Wrong syntax in the TXT file upladed. When using domain:do not use https or www. just “domain:sitename.com”
  • Do not describe the context of the links you want to disavow in the TXT file. You can use the reconsideration request form for this.
  • Manually try to clean up your links without the use of the disavow tool as well, don’t just try using the disavow tool as a short cut. 

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