March 11, 2009

Follow Directions: the Answer is Boots

In junior high I had a teacher I loved. We played Pente during our free time and learned critical thinking, problem solving, and how to be better students effortlessly under his direction. This teacher really knew his stuff and how to get kids to learn and follow directions.

One thing that has always stuck with me was something he did, or should I say, said. He was teaching us how to follow directions. We all know how to do that, right? He went to each student and whispered in their ear. Then the student would say something back. He would either tell the student to stand or remain seated.

I watched as student after student was passed and most remained seated. I could not wait for him to come to me as I knew I would have the correct response. Finally he came to my desk. He leaned into my ear and said: "Say just what I say. Say boots...without shoes."

You know what I said? I said, "boots!"

Teachers like this are hard to forget. They really make learning fun and interesting.

I've been examining a few things about my blogs and doing some problem solving, critical thinking, and following directions; just as my teacher taught me many years ago. One thing I found very, very interesting was my page rank on Inspired plummeted to a big fat ZERO. Okay, so I know this blog will probably never be on top, but it was hovering between 2 and 3, which I considered fairly respectable for what it is.

During my examinations I found Inspired was not verified and did not have a sitemap. (These were things I was sure I did when I started this blog almost two years back.) Given these two factors, this blog has not been on the crawled for who knows how long. Well I've done verified and mapped it, again.

If you have a Blogspot blog, I would check if you're verified and have a sitemap submitted in the Webmaster tools of your google account dashboard. It's easy to do, just follow the directions.

To be doubly sure it gets crawled I added Meta tags. Do I know what Meta tags are? No. But I have them as supposedly they give spiders pertinent information about your blog.

I would have never known about the fall in page rank had I not been messing around with the newer blogs I've been building. Revisiting all you learn in the beginning certainly helps keep you on track in the end. Really, all I had to do all along was follow directions.
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  1. Hi! Good advise, but I get totally lost when I go into the webmaster side of it. But still, I did find a few things that needed fixing up. Whether I've done it right, who knows!

    I looked into Meta tags sometime ago and was told Google does not pay much importance on them, so in the end I did not add them. But it can't hurt doing it, can it?

    I can't remember whether you added keywords to your meta tags. I recall they may help.

    Thank you heaps for the advise. You are a good soul!

    Take Care,

  2. Hi Peter!

    I think the jury is still out about Meta tags. I read some saying they don't do a thing and I read others saying they are a must have. Either way I have them now.

    You bet I put keywords in them!

    I think the most important thing I accomplished in this is to follow directions, follow up, and follow through.

    See you soon!

  3. Meta tags aren't that important for Google, but other search engines do use them. It doesn't hurt to use them.

    I've neglected them on my blogs, but I use them extensively when I build web sites.

  4. Hello J.L!

    I was just reading that about Google, then I saw them mentioned in the webmaster tools. It's all so frustrating.

    Apparently they look for the meta description for the blog. If this information is good, they use it for the introductory line on the search listings. Or something like that.

    A little further investigation found that Google is also checking the meta keyword information.

    All I have to say is if they're crawling it, then we better have them.

    Take care!

  5. Hi, Muse.
    Great information. Finding time to implement all this stuff is my issue, but when I need advice I can often find it on your site.
    I had heard long ago that Google didn't pay much attention to metatags, but I also heard that they change their algorithms often.
    So where do we go to check our page rank? (See how much I know?)


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