Yoast SEO Sitemap Not Appearing? Try This…

fix-yoast-seo-sitemap-permalinks

Fix your Yoast SEO Sitemap in two clicks

Recently we came across an issue where the Yoast SEO Sitemap was not appearing. It was not giving a 404 page not found error, instead the homepage of the website was being shown.

These types of issues can be frustrating. The issue could be in the .htaccess file, or it could be a plugin conflict. In this case the fix was very simple, but it took a while to find the issue.

Fixing permalinks brings back the sitemap

In this case the site was a brand new wordpress install. We usually set the permalinks up before launching the site, but in this case the settings were left on the default setting with the query string variables that look like this: ?p=123.

After setting the permalinks to “custom” the sitemap began appearing normally again. These permalink settings can be found in the WordPress menu under Settings -> Permalinks. Hopefully this little WordPress tip will quickly help you fix your Yoast SEO Sitemap not appearing issue.

How to choose a SEO Company
in Denver

choose-a-denver-seo-company

The Light Bulb Division Front Lobby in Denver, CO

Denver is a great place to be a business owner. The Colorado economy is one of the best in the nation, but that doesn’t mean business owners don’t have to work hard. Finding the right marketing partner can be a big part of your company’s successful business plan. Here’s some information that will help you choose a Denver SEO Company.

#1: Ask if they are a Google Partner

To find out if an SEO company in Denver is a Google Partner you can search for them here.

There are less than forty Google Partners that show up in the search for the Denver area. Official Google Partners have to pass tests to show they are proficient in things like Google Adwords and Google Analytics.

If you want your SEO company to help you rank well with Google, why not pick a company that has shown they have learned as much about working with the search engine as possible?

Ask them the right questions

The 5 worst SEO mistakes

Don’t make these SEO Mistakes

common seo mistakes

Sometimes the secret to success is just making sure you don’t make too many mistakes. This is very true with Search Engine Optimization, as making one of these mistakes can cause a website to drop drastically in rank.

If you’re looking to improve your sites ranking on search engines these rules are a quick way to know what not to do so you don’t make the worst SEO mistakes.


SEO Mistake #1 – Hire a bad SEO company

How do you keep from hiring a bad SEO company? Just like any other contractor that you would hire, get multiple bids, check references and most importantly make sure you know what they are doing to help your rankings

For more details on what to ask your SEO company you can go here, but the bottom line is; if your SEO company starts using the word ‘proprietary’ that’s a problem.

With a bad SEO company you have no idea what SEO Mistakes they might be making that could affect your site. Make sure you know exactly what your SEO company is doing to help you. Legitimate SEO strategies can be explained to business owners. They are not magic, but well thought out actions that follow Google Webmaster Guidelines.

SEO Mistake #2 – Bad Backlinks

Backlinks are links to your website from other websites. There are good backlinks that help your website. Some examples of good backlinks would be a link to your website from a manufacturer or a legitimate organization. Links like this might come from a Chamber of Commerce that you belong to, or a manufacturer that links to you because you sell their product. Another example of a good backlink would be a forum post from a real customer that likes your product.

Good backlinks come naturally (or organically) as your website grows. People like your product or are associated with your business and they link to you.

Bad backlinks are ones that are artificially created. Some SEO companies will place backlinks to your site on “secret blog networks” in an effort to try and improve your rankings. At one time these “fake” backlinks might have helped rankings, but Google has figured out how to tell the real backlinks from the fakes. Now days having bad backlinks will almost certainly hurt your business’s search rankings.

SEO Mistake #3 – Bad Content

The content on your website should be original and talk about your businesses services. Your content should tell visitors what makes your business unique from your competitors.

Content that is copied from other websites or pulled from manufacturers content can actually hurt your search results.

If you can’t or don’t have time to write your own content, hire a content writer. The money you spend to create good original content for your site is well worth it when it helps search engines to rank your business.

SEO Mistake #4 – Bad website design

Websites that load fast, and work well on multiple devices, like phones and tablets will rank better in search. How much better we don’t know, but Google has told us it’s important to pay attention to these things.

For a quick link to Googles site speed test go here.

SEO Mistake #5 – Don’t read Google Webmaster Guidelines

We mentioned Google webmaster guidelines in #1, but this is really important.

Take the time to read Google Webmaster Guidelines. You don’t have to understand all of it, but it will give you a good idea of things to be aware of so you don’t make big SEO mistakes.

How can we help you?

Our company has helped many local businesses with their websites, SEO and Pay Per Click marketing. Let’s talk about how we can help your business grow.

Web Developer
Won’t Call You Back?

“My web developer won’t call me back”

web geek

Unfortunately we hear this all the time.

You hire someone to build you a website. You pay a lot of money. Maybe it’s $1,000. Or $2,500. It could be $4-5,000 or more.

After the website launches you need some changes, maybe it’s something simple… like a phone number or an address changed. Or maybe it’s more critical like your site not working on phones.

You call up the person you paid all that money to build your site…

And the Web Developer won’t call you back!

We help people with this problem everyday.

How do we help? It’s actually kind of simple:

We don’t charge clients a lot of money up front to build a website.

You pay a monthly fee for us to build and manage your website.

Managing your website means…
making sure it WORKS…

If your website WORKS…
that means it brings you business

We don’t just build websites. We build websites that work.

Let’s talk about how we can help you make your website work for you.

Do I own my domain name?

get-found-fast-shark

Just because you are paying for your domain name doesn’t mean you own it. Unfortunately, some web development companies will purchase domain names for customers, but maintain ownership.

Here at the Light Bulb Division we’ve created a free tool that helps you quickly determine if you own your domain name. It’s free and only takes a few seconds to use.


5 Rules For Domain Name Purchases

Always buy your domain names

Don’t allow anyone to buy your domain names. Buying domain names is easy and relatively inexpensive. We usually use GoDaddy.com because their customer service is amazing, but it really doesn’t matter who you buy the domain from as long as you buy it.

Use an email address you will have access to Forever

When you buy the domain name you will need to put an email address for the “registrant” (that’s you). Don’t use a work email address unless you own the company. Don’t use an email address that you might lose access too.

This is important because your email is how you will access your domain name in the future. If you don’t have access to the email address you bought the domain name with it can be a huge hassle to get control of the domain name later

Don’t buy a dot net address if your competitor owns the dot com

You may want to buy supergreatwidgetcompany.com… but the only thing available is supergreatwidgetcompany.net.

If your competitor sells the exact same widgets as you do… don’t by the dot net address for your main website

Doing this will probably result in people mixing up the dot com and the dot net… and you’ll be sending them business

Don’t worry about a domain name that describes exactly what you do or sell

If you sell Widgets in Wabash County don’t think the best domain name for you is “widgetsinwabashcounty.com”

In the past search engines used to give lots of credit to “exact domain name matches” but this has changed. The content on your site will help you much more that just relying on your domain name

Your domain name matters less than you think

Amazon.com doesn’t sell the most books online with the domain name books.com (books.com actually redirects to Barns and Noble). Owning a really “good” domain name doesn’t ensure that you will get lots on traffic and be successful.

What matters more than your domain name is the content that is on your site.

Need help with your domain names or website? We can help. Let’s talk about how we can help your business grow.

Does Above the Fold Matter?

Chocolate chip cookie in half makes us question above the fold

Above the Fold. Better than below the fold?

 

For years people talked about website content being “Above the Fold”. I was one of those people who talked about it. It was a big concern when we designed websites 10 years ago.

But how important is Above the Fold today?

Above the fold is just as important as it was years ago. But the perspective has changed.

I’m not going to discuss how Above The Fold has grown on desktops and shrunk on cellphones. The arguments about pixel height can be resolved elsewhere.

The Idea Behind “Above The Fold”

The important idea behind “Above the Fold” always has been “Don’t make your Visitor work hard to get your message”. In the good-ole-days “work hard” ment making a user find the scroll button on the browser to move down on the page.
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Should you use discount hosting?

Should you host your website with a discount web hosting company?

monkey chooses suspect apple

Know what you’re getting before choosing discount hosting.

In certain situations using a discount hosting company might not be a bad idea, but make sure you know what you are getting.

Managed v.s. Unmanaged Hosting

What managed or unmanaged hosting means will vary from each hosting provider, but following will usually be true:

  • Unmanaged means you are getting some space on a server for your website, and probably not much else.
  • Managed hosting means your hosting provider will provide space on the server and will also manage backups and updates. They may also provide others services like monthly updates to your website.

Unmanaged website hosting can be as low at 99 cents a month, or it might even be free. As with many things in life, discount web hosting can be a great deal “until it isn’t”.
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How to do your own SEO

do your own seo we can

You can do your own SEO. Here are a few steps to get you started on improving your own Search Engine Optimization.

Many SEO companies do not want you to know how to do your own SEO. Basic SEO can be done by many small business owners, if you invest the time.

Listen to Google

Many SEO companies see Google as the enemy. While we may not believe that Google always follows their motto “Do no evil”, we do believe Google wants search results to be the best they can possibly be for consumers. This is just good business. If Google did not return relevant search results to users they would quickly lose market share.

So when Google tells you what they are looking for in your website, listen to them. The Google webmaster guidelines provide you with information on how to make your site look “good” to Google.
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Use WordPress for business websites?

Summit County Ski Slopes. Winter in Breckenridge

Breckenridge Ski Resort, a popular Lightbulb Division destination in the Winter.

People often ask me which content management system (CMS) I think is the best for small to medium businesses. The answer is WordPress.

Why use WordPress for business websites? WordPress powers close to 19% of the the entire Internet. It’s the largest CMS by far. But popular doesn’t always mean better, so am I just a WordPress fanboy?

While every software developer has their favorites my reasoning for using WordPress extend beyond blind loyalty. Here’s why:

1. WordPress usage is growing.

WordPress is Open Source. That means anyone can download the code and use it on their website for free. It’s not actually important that WordPress is the most popular… it’s more important that usage of WordPress is growing.

Open Source means that lots of developers contribute to WordPress and WordPress plugins to make it better. Anytime you choose an Open Source product you want to make sure that the product isn’t becoming less and less popular. This does happen with CMS, Joomla is one that is decreasing in popularity. If less people are using it, less developers want to contribute to the code base. Less contributors in the future will probably mean less features.

2. WordPress is becoming more secure

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5 Things to Ask Your SEO company

colorado convention center

The Colorado Convention Center at Sunrise

The Search Engine Optimization industry has gotten a bad image the last few years.

Many small to medium businesses have had an experience with an SEO company that left them feeling taken advantage of… perhaps even lied to.

Here’s a quick list to ask your SEO company to see if they are being honest with you:

1. What services do you provide for my monthly payment?

This seems simple enough, but many irreputible SEO companies will hide behind terms like “proprietary” when asked what they actually do for the money.

If your SEO company can’t give you an itemized list of what they actually do for the money you pay them this only means one thing: They aren’t doing anything for the money you pay them. Or worse, they may be doing things that could really harm your site. Read more about the 5 worst SEO mistakes here.

2. What are the websites or blogs you use to backlink my website?

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