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Basic Squidoo SEO Techniques – A Checklist

When I started using SEO for Squidoo lenses systematically, I latched onto Webconf’s 15 Minute SEO checklist.

It was the first recommended resource I included on my Squidoo SEO lens in ’07.

Webconfs’ SEO checklist is oversimplified, of course. It was also written 4 years ago, which is eons in web terms; most search engines will have changed and refined their algorithms since that checklist was written.

Nevertheless, looking back at that page, I still agree with most of their suggestions, even if I think some things are more or less important than they do.


  • You must NOT follow SEO guidelines so slavishly that you sap all the life and joy out of your Squidoo lens for human visitors. SEO practices should be like punctuation and grammar: effective, systematic, and invisible.
  • I doubt that keyword density is as important as they say. I do think keyword proximity is important.
  • They state that links from old webpages have more weight. I’m not sure that’s still the case. I recently ran across a fascinating analysis of the so-called “Google Sandbox Patent” which shows that Google pays attention to the age difference between the page the link is FROM and the page it links TO. Links from old pages to old pages are more valuable (and thus links from old pages increase in value over time), while links from newer pages generally help other new pages more. So for example, links from webpages on the Persian “Gulf Oil spill” of the 1990s won’t have as much linking weight as recent news articles and websites about the “Gulf Oil Spill”. This is also why blog posts are a great way to announce a new lens. Same approximate age.
  • They say that cross-linking between sites is bad. I think it’s a more nuanced issue. I am suspicious of the Link Wheel technique, because it’s a well-known, artificial scheme, exactly the sort of trick that Google and friends are trying to to be duped by. However, there are some natural forms of cross-linking, like a blog and website, which I suspect work just fine.
  • There’s one technique I use but forgot to mention on my Squidoo-SEO lens: synonyms. It depends on the lens topic, but I’ve found I get plenty of traffic from “How to build an X…” and “how to make an X….” on the same lens.

Finally, as a bonus for those of you who’ve actually read this post all the way through, check out this one-year-old “SEO Best Practices from SEOmoz” post. SEOmoz is a thinktank of SEO industry experts who test and build tools to test effective SEO practices. They are not infallible, but it sounds like the suggestions they made there are based on field tests.

And speaking of SEO, I’m still trying to test one particular search optimization method, so pardon the spam: Kithyra Kithyra Grunderbar GrunderbarI should also mention Lady Elsibaton and Lord Elsibaton


  1. Hi there :) I do Seo too and I like the helpful information you provide in here. I’ll bookmark your website and check again here regularly. I’m quite sure I’ll learn many new stuff right here! Good luck for the next!

  2. any one explain me what is google sandbox and how it works ???

    1. Greekgeek says:

      The Google Sandbox is a rumor that has floated around the SEO industry for many years, never confirmed by Google. Apparently, in some niches or industries, Google seems to wait a while after a new domain has appeared to start ranking it. In 2008, I started a new domain, and it took about a month to get out of this “sandbox.” Others have reported no sandbox effect at all.

      There is no absolute consensus on the so-called Sandbox effect, but generally, when it does show up, it seems to impact new domains, not new webpages. New webpages, especially blog posts and pages on active sites like Squidoo, can be indexed very quickly. My blog posts are usually on Google within 20 minutes, and my lenses — since I use careful tagging and Squidoo categories to give search engine bots a way to find them– tend to appear in Google within a day or two.

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