How to develop apps for Android, iPhone and iPad?

Developing apps for mobile devices needs to be done in the device specific programming language. Developing for iPhone or iPad needs to be done in Objective-C while develpment for Android powered devices is done in Java. Fortunately there are SDKs like appcelerator of Titanium out there that make it possible to develop one app that runs on both Android and Appale mobile devices.

Titanium translates your hard won web skills into native applications that perform and look just like they were written in Objective-C (iPhone and iPad) or Java (Android). You can build applications that are more social, local, media rich, interactive, and extensible with this free and open source development tool.

How to use JMeter to test the performance of a website?

JMeter is part of the Apache Jakarta project. It is an open source desktop application designed to load test functional behavior and measure performance. It was originally designed for testing Web Applications. Apache JMeter can be used to simulate a heavy load on a server, network or object to test its strength or to analyze overall performance under different load types. You can use it to make a graphical analysis of performance or to test your server/script/object behavior under heavy concurrent load. This makes JMeter a very usefull tool for testing the performance of websites when stressed with heavy load. 

For download and documentation see: jakarta.apache.org/jmeter

lostboys.nl

The first full service internet agency in Amsterdam that worked for big international clients.

blastradius.com

Blast Radius is a strategic interactive agency that advocates moving away from interruptive traditional marketing and toward strategies that engage and create open brands. They have multiple international offices. The Dutch office is located in Amsterdam.

How to find and prevent broken links / 404 page not found errors?

For SEO and your users it is important to prevent your site from containing broken links. To be able to fix any problems regarding “404 page not found errors” you first have to discover these links. There are at least 3 ways in which you can discover if your websites contains broken links.

  1. server logs 
    Check your server logs manual or with a log analyser for the occurrence of 404 errors
  2. custom 404 page
    Create a custom 404 page that is fired every time a visitor or bot hits a file that does not  exist and have the file notify you about the error.
  3. link checker tool
    Use a tool to spider your site that reports back all broken links on your site. 

The first two methods are only usable in environments where users and/or bots are present because they needed to trigger the 404 error pages. Without a bot or user actually clicking a broken link server logs or custom 404 pages will not be of much use. Both of these tools are very usable for detecting links from other websites that point to pages that do not exist (any more) and therefore every SEO should use at least one of them. No one would not like to have incoming links that end up at a 404 page not found error. That would be link juice waisted.

To make sure your own site does not contain any broken links, a link checker tool is a necessity. A good link checker tool will spider your whole site and find all links on all pages and report back which response those links give. Xenu’s Link Sleuth is probably one of the most popular free link checker tools available: Xenu Link Sleuth

Here are some other free / open source link checker tools:

How to use CSS sprites to increase page speed?

The use of CSS sprites is a technique which can decrease the amount of server calls per page drastically. By using CSS sprites you can move the images that are used on all or most pages of your website into a single file. This way only one server call will be needed to load all these images into the browser. The increase in page speed this will have as result, will not only be appreciated by the visitors of your website but also by the search engines.

The search engines are taken page speed into account in their ranking algorithms. See: Using site speed in web search ranking. Google even made a project out of helping webmasters to speed up their websites. See: http://code.google.com/page-speed/

How to use Blekko as a SEO research tool?

Blekko is a search engine that lets you look under the hood. With the slash tags /rank, /seo, /urlseo and /links it gives you valuable information about any domain or page. There are a lot of other free and paid services that offer similar data, but Blekko is definitely worth giving a try. I doubt very much if they will ever become a serious rival to Google or Bing, but if they improve a bit more on their SEO related slash tags they could become big as a SEO tool.

If you watch the video because you are interested in the SEO slash tags, skip the first 15 minutes.

Can Facebook’s social plugins help your SEO efforts?

Facebook’s social plugins can help your SEO efforts a lot. As Google’s algorithm is giving more importance to relevant links from reputable Facebook and Twitter profiles, it is clear that any plugin that helps you to get links, likes or mentions is good for SEO. The video below illustrates nicely how Facebook’s social plugins can help your online marketing efforts. All the plugins are easy to incorporate into almost any website. Three of the current Facebook plugins are particular interesting for SEO are:

  • Like Button
    The Like button lets users share pages from your site back to their Facebook profile with one click. What more do you want for SEO than a simple plugin that provides the option for your users to generated links for you one click.
  • Comments
    The Comments plugin lets users comment on any piece of content on your site. People writing about your brand or product can even be better than just a like link as this will make the context of the link more on topic.
  • Like Box
    The Like Box enables users to like your Facebook Page and view its stream directly from your website. The more like your Facebook page has the more credibly it will be. The credibility of your profile will increase the value of the links you post on your Facebook page.
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For more information see developers.facebook.com/plugins

Are Twitter & Facebook becoming more important for SEO?

Yes, Twitter & Facebook are becoming more important for SEO. Matt Cutts, who works for Google, clearly states in the video below that Google’s algorithm is adjusted to take social media into account more last December. Google always used links from sites like Twitter and Facebook as they used links from any other website in their algorithm. Now they start to treat (links from) social media slightly different. On sites like Facebook and Twitter there are other factors than links to base the credibility or reputation on of a page / profile that links to you. On Twitter, the amount of tweets, followers and mentions someone has and the number of times their profile is listed says something about their reputation. On Facebook very similar, but slightly different factors influence how credible Google will judge a profile of people linking to you.

It is becoming more and more important for online marketing in general and SEO in particular to build reputable profiles on relevant social media platforms. Getting links, likes, mentions, etc. from credible members of social media platform like Twitter and Facebook might very well become the new link building. Social media presence already was an important part of online marketing and is now becoming more an more important for SEO.

How useful are nofollow links for SEO?

If we beleive what Google (Matt Cutts) says about nofollow links, there is no SEO value in getting nofollow links. In the video below, Matt Cutts does admit that there can be some value in nofollow links, but not for SEO.

There are a few reasons why building nofollow links can be useful, even for SEO purposes.

  • Nofollow links look natural
    To make sure that the link structure of your site looks natural it cannot consist only out of dofollow links.
  • Nofollow Links can send traffic
    As Matt Cutts mentions in his video: a good link (followed or not) will drive traffic to your website.
  • Search engines seem to follow nofollow links
    Contrary to what the search engines state, there are tests conducted that suggest their spiders do follow nofollow links. (See: http://www.seoverflow.com/ or http://www.seo-writer.com/
  • Trust & relevance 
    Even though spiders are not supposed to follow nofollow links it is very hard to believe that Google would not use link from Wikipedia or other trusted domains. These links are most probably you to determine trust and relevance.

http://www.youtube.com/v/g37bwBlifnk?fs=1&hl=nl_NL