Sunday, December 14, 2008

Local Search, SEO, Joomla, Revenue

The topic of Local Search, SEO, Joomla, Revenue is pretty confusing. It's a jumble. Welcome to my world. I try to think thru all these problems at once. In any case, here's a plan with some questions. What do you think?

I have a site - - which is a link magnet. Schools and parents love it. They link to it. They bookmark it. They tell their friends about this great way to prep for spelling tests. I'm lucky to say it's mine. (It's also a money pit but I won't whine on about this since in retrospect, most of these software money pits are essentially due to lack of clear thinking. Which in retrospect, appears really stupid).

SpellingCity has hidden, in it's fertile joomla-php-html body, a home page for each public and private school in the country. Wouldn't it be cool if these pages came up high in the search engines?

School Page Positioning in the Search Engines. There are a few steps: Setting the pages up right, telling Google about them with a Google Site Map, and getting some links.

The Google Sitemap is a bit of a mess of a project. Joomla, you see, has a set of automatic site map generators. But, with our version and implementation of Joomla, none of these seem to work the way that we want them to. So we will probably write our own.

Setting up the Pages Right - We have (I should check if this is true) set up the pages so that the:

H1 Tag - School
H2 Tag - City
H3 tags - zip code, street address, city, state, school name

Content: All of the above plus (still to be optimized).

Somerset Elementary School has this page for it's teachers and students and parents. Any parent or teacher who would like to, can create an account on, and save their spelling and vocabulary lists for the use of the students. Many schools to help their students with their homework and studying, link directly to this page. - SpellingCity helps build spelling and vocabulary and reading skills. Anyone can enter their spelling word list and take the tests, use the TeachMe funtion, or play the educational word games. Free! To save lists, you must register and become a member which costs between $19.95 and $39.95 per year.

There are plenty of questions to resolve about page titles, URLs, metatags, metadescriptions, and alt tags. We'll work them.


1. If I want to appear high in the search engine rankings for the school, what is the best use of the Heading tags? Page title? URL? The problem is that since we're using joomla, we have uneven control over these elements. But it would help if we had any sense of what people have already learned about how Google is treating these issues.

2. Over time, I will put up some modest advertisements on these pages. Lets say for instance that we get Huntington Learning Centers as a sponsor. Ideally, we would have some way of providing direct links to the local centers. So, on each page for instance, there could be a generic Huntington advertisment followed by a listing or link to the sites that are closest to the school. I guess this could be done by Zip code. The same concept would work with book stores (BORDERS - want to sponsor SpellingCity?), Kumon, Sylvan Learning Centers, or, if I can't do better, McDonalds health centers or the 7-11 value stores.

One possibility for making a few bucks might be to try and put up google or yahoo local advertising. Questions:
- Does this make more generally than other Google ads?
- If I want local advertising, is this automatic or do I have to do something different?
- I have never really understood what google keys it's adsense from. I doubt many people do. But is it the same mysterious complex array of info including page title, anchor text of incoming links, H tags, and content analysis? I would guess that it's simpler. I would guess that local advertising starts with:
A. The location of the viewer
B. Title tags, Heading tags, and content

Any special insight into these challenges?

1 comment:

Miss Suzy said...

Joomla is, unless you are vanilla, always a mistake.