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Preview: Comments on: 13 Deadly Google Sins – Is Your Website Committing Any of These?

Comments on: 13 Deadly Google Sins – Is Your Website Committing Any of These?

Search Engine Optimisation Ireland

Last Build Date: Sat, 28 Mar 2015 13:21:35 +0100


By: Alex

Tue, 17 Aug 2010 10:03:21 +0000

Hi Richard,Thanks for this information. It appears that I'm guilty of a few of these "sins". Looks like I've got a bit of work to do to get my site in order but at least I now have something to work on.Regards

By: Aanee Flowers

Wed, 14 Jul 2010 02:25:58 +0000

Richard, That is a pretty good list, I think it help me with my new flower shop.Hopefully, I can use this as checklist and do things right up front.Thanks for sharing, Aanee

By: Richard Hearne

Wed, 17 Mar 2010 11:49:00 +0000

@Evan - it's one or the other or both. If you want to target CA then I'd use .ca ccTLD. If you think you might want to sell into US later then try to use .com gTLD and host initially in CA.@Alex - glad it was useful.@Graham - funny that after nearly 4 years most, if not all, of this is still absolutely valid.

By: Graham

Fri, 26 Feb 2010 15:58:45 +0000

I think the majority if not all of those points are as valid now as when they were written. I think the comment about "both www and non-www URL" is a good one.

By: Alex Muir

Mon, 08 Feb 2010 14:48:52 +0000

Thanks for very informative article. To my horror, I was making more than one of these errors - now thankfully resolved!Alex

By: Evan Kendal

Mon, 20 Jul 2009 13:10:55 +0000

your guides are excellent, one thing I wonder about geo-targeting, does having a host in your country (Canada in my case) stack with having a Canadian ccTLD domain??is it one or the other, or is it better to have both?

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Mon, 13 Jul 2009 15:40:53 +0000

[...] ‘13 Deadly Google Sins‘ I looked at a few of the most serious issues that can affect a website’s ability to [...]

By: Dave Gange

Sat, 23 May 2009 18:09:30 +0000

Only 13 deadly sins I am sure there are more. Thanks for getting the word out there. There are many who don't understand the rules and requirements and any education provided is welcome as far as I am concerned.

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Thu, 20 Nov 2008 15:04:23 +0000

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By: Richard Hearne

Sun, 09 Nov 2008 18:58:40 +0000

@Gilles - It may add some benefit, but I'd imagine nothing like using a right ccTLD, hosting location, or setting your geotarget via GWT. I wouldn't relay on text helping set your geographic relevance though.

By: Jeff

Sun, 09 Nov 2008 08:14:47 +0000

Thanks for the tips. I didn't know about the sessions - but I guess it makes sense because Google doesn't want to send users to pages that require log ins.

By: Gille

Tue, 04 Nov 2008 13:27:52 +0000

Does adding content that uses Irish locations such as Dublin, Ireland etc help then too to let Google know its Irishness.And we are talking about pages from Ireland Right as opposed to just under the general As many people dont seem to use "Pages from Ireland" does it matter. Once I come up in the main listing under that would be enough.

By: Richard Hearne

Tue, 04 Nov 2008 02:29:39 +0000

Hi GillesThanks for dropping by. You can set the geotarget to Ireland within Google Webmaster Tools. Then your .com will be perceived as Irish by Google. It takes a couple of weeks to kick in however.Rgds Richard

By: Gilles

Sat, 01 Nov 2008 11:51:15 +0000

Hi,With all the talk of having people move hosting to country specific IP spaces when a non country tld is used could we not just use Googles webmaster tool and set the preferred geo location there or doesnt that work.My site is irish, my audience I'd prefer are Irish but I use a .com and my host uses a dutch IP range. Do I have to move host or is that my only option?Thanks Gille

By: Demtron

Fri, 10 Oct 2008 12:47:37 +0000

The first point about Flash sites is right on! I see an increasing number of new sites, especially for small businesses, that use only Flash content. They look pretty, but who cares if nobody's finding them?I read recently that Adobe has provided technology to Google and Yahoo that will begin crawling and indexing Flash content. Does anyone here have any experience with this change and how it has affected their site?

By: grafix

Thu, 18 Sep 2008 04:05:48 +0000

Re; Canonical URL issueFirstly may I compliment you on this most informative website.In an attempt to get my website ranked as high as possible, I verified my site with Google Tools, used all their checking resources and came out with a clean bill of health with no issues as far as Google is concerned. The only things I can think of is (a) that my website is fairly new(2 months) although I have had the domain for 13 months. (b) My site is a one page only and I have no back links.With regards to the subject matter, I did notice that Google give 3 choices in the ' Set preferred domain' option, does this mean I should select the www or the none www, or simply leave it on number 3 (default) as use both?.It is some years since I had a website, which was a geocities site for genealogy lookups where I had top rank, but it appears much has changed since those days.Finally! how many of you are aware of the new search engine at and what will its future be?.Again this is a great site.grafix.

By: Integrisearch

Thu, 07 Aug 2008 19:37:09 +0000

I would add "Over-optimization" as one of the deadly sins. Google has become adept at devaluing sites that stuff title, meta description, alt text and body copy with tons of keywords. And using the anchor text over and over again is another form of that.

By: Andy Millar

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 09:18:05 +0000

I would be more hesitant. Theres may just a lot more searches going on from the UK for your search terms. Moving server isn't an insignificant task. You don't mention whether or not your Australian traffic has declined in numbers or just in proportion? If its just a % change, I wouldnt move it without a lot more thought. Andy

By: Richard Hearne

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 03:07:12 +0000

Hi NigeMy advice to you is to move off UK IP space. I really think that Google's geotargeting is completely borked right now.Find a reliable Australian host and move your site into AU IP space.Best rgds, and good luck with it Richard

By: Nige

Fri, 11 Jul 2008 08:19:10 +0000

My site is hosted in the UK on UK IP but has a COM.AU address and is targeted towards COM.AU but we seem to get more traffic from rather than Help!!

By: Richard Hearne

Thu, 22 Nov 2007 07:45:44 +0000

Hi AndyJust to clarify - you can only use the targeting tool if your domain is non-geographic. cTLD domains cannot use this function. They released the tool about 2 weeks ago. I've heard about results being quite fast, but I'm still waiting on a number of sites.Rgds Richard

By: Andy Millar

Thu, 22 Nov 2007 00:10:28 +0000

Hi Richard, youre right I should have noticed the date!...just discovered your site and its great - very useful. And talking about dates and things changing, I've also just discovered today that google have a new tool that lets you specify your location even if your domain name isnt a geographic TLDCheersAndy

By: Richard Hearne

Wed, 21 Nov 2007 08:42:51 +0000

Hi AndyThanks for dropping by.Just in case you didn't notice this post is over 1 year old now - a year is a long time in search :grin:The UK market in particular has been plagued with Google problems over the past year - domains hosted outside UK not appearing in PFUK.Another point to make is that Google now lets you set your preferred target country for non-geographic TLDs (.com, .net etc).Most hosting companies dont have a clue about SEO, so yes I would agree with your last comment.Rgds Richard

By: Andy Millar

Tue, 20 Nov 2007 23:36:29 +0000

Richard, Re Deadly sin #6 This article: seems to make it clear that if there is a top level domain name that has regional significance, thats the factor that will feed results from a regional search. IP address (server location) only comes into play if there isnt a regional domain name.That agrees with your answer #23 above, but perhaps the mention of server location in the deadly sin causes confusion.Isnt it enough to say that all you need is a regional TLD to match your target market? I think hosting companies overplay the importance of the location of their server...would you agree?Andy

By: mick

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 18:07:34 +0000

phew , had me totally taken in grrr Regards Mick

By: Richard Hearne

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 18:02:18 +0000

A 'Pages from Ireland' option to me quite clearly states my desire to be returned Irish results. In this case I think it's a feature they have introduced which may have be buggy. I know that they are currently hunting international bugs.Page Rate was a fake - do you honestly think they'd let surfers decide? Spam Central.Don't believe everything you read :grin:Rgds Richard

By: mick

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 17:54:29 +0000

Hi Richard im unsure if i submitted last comment , you may of wished for more relevant results ,but the site still returns in the prime position none the less,watering down the argument for the previous, maybe the bot is given more weight to the query item than the query country ?, also on another matter as a site { red cardinal} with a good page rank, what are your views on googles plans to do away with page rank and replace it with the new page rate system that they are currently working on, where by the surfers will decide on whats popular and whats not,via on page vote for page and the trip over option on the toolbar regards Mick

By: Richard Hearne

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 17:32:11 +0000

I wouldn't consider that result for free games to be relevant at all - I ask for pages from Ireland, and that quite obviously has no relation to Ireland (that I can see). Nice find though.Your second link gets nofollow BTW.Rgds Richard

By: mick

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 17:27:54 +0000

Thanks for the quick reply, my own personnel opinion is that it relates to relevancy , as i have come across plenty of sites which return in the country filter whilst being hosted elsewhere for example a search for free games via the ireland filter will return as number one despite ip address for america and being a .com, as they would be the most relevant return for the query free games, relevancy must be the overriding factor, even for my own keywords im coming out on top of a lot of locally hosted local tlds, Kind regards, Mick

By: Richard Hearne

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 17:15:01 +0000

Hi MickSeeing more and more of this, which signals to me an increasing ability to discern where a site is 'from'. However, we're still not clear on what drives this and it seems to be still the exception rather than the rule.My advice - stick to the guidelines until such time as they are updated by the powers that be.Thanks for popping by Richard

By: mick

Fri, 26 Oct 2007 17:01:47 +0000

Hi Richard, very informative blog, how ever the issue of local tld and local host seems a little off to me , i think if google deems you relevant enough they will include you in the country filtered results, if you search for my site via the ireland results we are still in the same position as the web filter, main keyword phrase is web design tipperary despite using a .net hosted abroad, would love to hear your thoughts on the matter, Kind regards Mick

By: mlankton

Sat, 06 Oct 2007 12:26:45 +0000

Yeah, apparently I got on akismet's blacklist for a week or so, and I didn't catch it right away. Akismet is great, but it's kind of scary that you can get stuck in akismet limbo so easy and they don't give you a heads up. They were nice about it when I contacted them and removed me right away.

By: Richard Hearne

Sat, 06 Oct 2007 08:01:06 +0000

Hey mlankton - this is very delayed as your comment got caught where it didn't want to be :)I doubt it will cause you much trouble. If it's from multiple forums then try easing it in. The best thing to do is experiment a little and watch your rankings. But bear in mind it might take some time for Google to crawl and find all those edited links.Also - sig links are going to be pretty low value. And it really depends a lot on what fora your sig links come from. Too difficult to really advise you. Just watch the reaction from Google and act accordingly.Rgds Richard

By: mlankton

Mon, 17 Sep 2007 13:41:01 +0000

My site is 6 weeks old, and I am getting an insane amount of backlinks from having my link in my sig on web forum posts. The sig is retroactive and displays on every post I've made in the last 3 years that included a sig.Is Google going to penalize me for having so many backlinks when my site is so new?

By: Vs - Page 2 - Irish SEO, Marketing & Webmaster Discussion

Tue, 14 Aug 2007 02:30:58 +0000

[...] you're into major duplicate content issues there... @aOnghus - I posted a response over on my blog 13 Deadly Google Sins - Is Your Website Committing Any of These? | Search Engine Optimisation & ... Rgds Richard __________________ .: Search Engine Optimisation Ireland & Online Marketing [...]

By: Richard Hearne

Tue, 14 Aug 2007 02:26:56 +0000

Hi also mirror on You'll find that that results in duplicate content issues. ( has been dead now for many moons BTW.)I cannot find using a 'pages from Ireland' search. Same goes for you can post the URLs for the searches where you say they appear?One thing I can say with 100% confidence - if you host a .com in Canada you will not appear in any Google searches with 'pages from Ireland'.Rgds Richard

By: a0nghus

Mon, 13 Aug 2007 18:48:51 +0000

Hi RichardI posted a comment today to one of your earlier posts on irishwebmastersforum. Link attached: and it relates to cardinal sin no. 6 above. Basically I want to get spotted on 'pages from ireland' searches but will have a .com hosted in Canada. You seem to be saying that this is impossible but have found some sites that are hosted overseas with a .com e.g. irelands-directory.comany advice would be appreciated Regards Aonghus

By: abhishek

Wed, 01 Aug 2007 12:55:54 +0000

hi i have a forum within my portal. regard the /index.php issue i checked few top sites have this issue but are stll well ranked on googlesearch....

By: Louie

Sun, 20 May 2007 11:28:11 +0000

I wouldn't take that as a complete YES. Is still a grey area regarding search engines as is considered duplicated content. SE rewards well developed websites, and the index.* or no index.* is part of it, as are pages for print which shouldn't be indexed and can easily be achieved by adding the meta tag nofollow.

By: Richard Hearne

Sun, 20 May 2007 10:13:31 +0000

Funnily enough, from recent observations this may no longer be an issue. It seems that Google is able to see that index.* is one and the same as the root page. Certainly the cache timestamp for both seems to be identical for most sites. PR seems also to be identical.I've not checked on a large number of sites, but it seems like a no-brainer for Google to fix this particular issue. Of course, that's not to say that redirecting index.* onto root / won't benefit your site.Rgds Richard

By: Louie

Sun, 20 May 2007 09:17:12 +0000

I think is one of the most common mistake made when it comes to SEO.

By: Richard Hearne

Sun, 20 May 2007 04:03:44 +0000

@Nixon - Google is your friend.@Louie - was advising a very large website about that very point just last week.

By: Louie

Wed, 16 May 2007 19:58:15 +0000

Home page it's also a duplicated content issue. For example and shows up the same page, so best is to give up on the index.phpcan be easily done in .htaccess like this #redirect index.php or htm or html to / RewriteCond %{THE_REQUEST} ^GET\ .*/index\.(htm|html|php)\ HTTP RewriteRule ^(.*)index\.(htm|html|php)$ /$1 [R=301,L]

By: Nixon

Thu, 10 May 2007 08:56:37 +0000

Eh... what happened to BMW?

By: TerryG

Tue, 27 Mar 2007 13:40:52 +0000

Oh I'm glad you wrote this. I went through the check list and could not check a yes to any of them. Seems I maybe on the right track with my site. Great post.

By: Pete

Tue, 20 Mar 2007 14:06:32 +0000

email sent :)

By: Richard Hearne

Tue, 20 Mar 2007 10:11:59 +0000

Hi PeteIf you like post it or send it to me [richard a t redcardinal period ie].I presume you are using absolute positioning? I cant think of any other way to do this?Rgds Richard

By: Pete

Tue, 20 Mar 2007 09:21:42 +0000

Sorry, Richard, are you looking for an example of the technique I was talking about?

By: Richard Hearne

Mon, 19 Mar 2007 20:05:20 +0000

Hi DermotGoogle uses the IP and the ccTLD to filter you into country level searches. A hosted here in Ireland should get the same result as a hosted in the UK.If you have a hosting arrangement here then having the applicable ccTLD should suffice.Hope that helps. Rgds Richard

By: Dermot O'Sullivan

Mon, 19 Mar 2007 19:07:53 +0000

Hi Richard, We have a .ie hosted in Ireland presently and want to have, .net and possibly use other country specific tlds. Will there be a big difference in google rankings if it is all hosted in Ireland? Would you recommend a per-country hosting solution?Rgrds Dermot