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Part Three - Keywords, Tags, Categories - Oh Yey! I Am So Mixed Up!

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Okay, so now we know all there is to know about content and keywords. Hah! But you did get the basics. It may be an excellent point to stop and talk about Keywords, Tags, Categories, and all that. Logically, this should come much later in progression. Still, because there seem to be such misunderstandings about Technorati, Del.icio.us, and other tagging systems, it may be an excellent place to put this down.

These articles began because of a thread at Absolute Write called "What Is Your Technorati Rank?" On perusing that thread, I realized that many writers were placing their hopes on something that would not happen. More so, they were misreading the importance of specific "rankings" and thus ignoring the more critical factors.

If you read the previous articles in this series, you now hopefully understand "keyword basics." So we are going to use Technorati for our example.

So along comes techie #1 and says:

"Hey, you know what. Blogs are becoming a mainstay business. They are great for people without knowledge of HTML, and you can create a website Weblog in minutes. So now they are multiplying over the net faster than rabbits, and the Search Engines mostly ignore them as most contain personal musings and ramblings. So why not create a sophisticated search engine for blogs?"

"Great idea," says techie #2, "a search engine from blogs. And that means anyone with a blog will want to register with us. But how are we going to build it? Normative search engine technology is not what we want."

"You know what?" says techie #1 "we are going to take keywords, call them by a different name and create a closed system!"

And thus, Technorati was born.

In Technorati, you define what you write with "tags" Technorati tags. These are keywords (with a particular HTML parameter). Keywords just like you will learn to use in your meta tags. Technorati then connects all the blogs with the exact keywords in a CLOSED SYSTEM. Technorati does not look at the content considerably (to my knowledge); they pay attention to the tags regarding keywords that you input. If you do not need input keywords, they use your keywords in your Blog setup.

Okay, this is great for all those people looking for blogs about hairdressing. So they come to Mr. & Mrs. Hair's blog because the Hair couple input keywords as Technorati tags. Simple.

Technorati now goes one step further. Technorati rates your blog based upon a few parameters. One of those "important" parameters is how many other people in the Technorati Network (Only those IN the network or those using Technorati tags) have linked to your blog or a post on it. So by gaining links there is no concept on Technorati as "bleeding links" as far as I know), you move up the ladder. But even Technorati also keeps track of how popular your blog is. You can have 200 links on your blog, but if no one visits, your standing will not go up to the top 100.

Okay, that is Technorati. Important for bloggers? Well, it is a popular site and growing. So the answer would be yes. Important for Google, MSN, and Yahoo --- not on its own...yet there is one critical Caveat.

When someone links to your site in a blog or website, the href HTML links are in the code. The Search Engines, when they read the code with their bots (see how much web lingo you know already!), considers these links. Those get added to the number of sites linking to you. They are "hot links" or "backlinks" to your blog or posts in your blog. So linking works in the closed world of Technorati tags and the Wide World of Search Engine placement. Those links are essential. Now, if you get linked in a viral blog, that counts for a lot in the world of Search Engine placement. (As we discussed in the previous articles.)

So while it is nice to know your Technorati ranking is going up, what is IMPORTANT is to remember to use their tools of tagging and linking to get others to discover and link to your blog. That gets noticed by the Search Engines. Not immediately, to be sure, but if you are being hit a great deal and have links to you, the Search Engines will pick up your blog and your keywords sooner rather than later. They will NOT look at the Technorati tags; they will look at your meta tag keywords and content. (Okay! so many things to remember)

Del.icio.us and others work on the same concept, though del.icio.us is more centralized and called a "social bookmarking service." Just remember the rule of thumb:

The more sites that link to you and your post, no matter for what reason, the better it is for you and your position in the Search Engines.

Okay, now, what are Categories? Categories belong in Wiki format; this is not the scope or place to discuss Wiki and its technology. I own a new Wiki site, and you are welcome to peruse JewishPedia because you can view all the code for each article on a Wiki site.

Blog categories (WordPress implements them automatically) are a way to search for something. I have Categories in my blog, but this is a code implemented Category Listing in Google's blogger system, where when you click, the blog does a Google Blog search in my blog for all articles related to that word. And thus, it depends on Google's specific Blog Search Engine (not their regular search engine).

Remember, Google and others have specific Blog search engines. It is essential to be on the top in those as well, BUT for mainstream, if you are using a Blog for whatever reason, your goal is to be in the normative search engines as well, and in a good placement there.

So there you have it. Tags = Keywords. Technorati uses them in the closed world of Technorati. The employ linking counts as well. These keywords and links, if done correctly, are also beneficial for Search Engine rankings if your blog is popular. deli.ci.ous uses them for "social" blogging.

So don't give up on Technorati. I don't believe it is the golden answer to good rankings in the Search Engines. It is but one of the myriad of possibilities.

"The more sites that link to you and your post, no matter for what reason, the better it is for you and your position in the Search Engines."






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