GoodbyeHootsuite, Hello Again Twitterfeed

Twitter is quickly becoming a major referral of traffic to my site, so I need to pay attention to these tools and how they impact readership and search engine optimization. I’m a big fan of Hootsuite.

One thing to look out for are systems that generate a toolbar with your content within an iframe below it. This was something that Digg did when they launched their Diggbar. There’s a lot of pressure for companies not to use that method. If it’s your site, you can stop it from happening!

If you’d like to disable the iframe, it’s actually quite simple. Within your html head tags, add:

<script type="text/javascript">
if (window != top){ top.location.replace(window.location); }
</script>

This basically pops your page into the parent frame if it’s opened within an iframe.

URL Shorteners and SEO

The problem with these shorteners, as opposed to other URL shorteners, is that they don’t pass on authority to the destination page since they display it within an iframe. As a result, the theory goes that your site isn’t getting any search engine juice passed to it.

I converted all of the automated Tweets from this blog over to Twitterfeed so that I could control how the link is embedded in the Tweet or Facebook status update. Twitterfeed has significantly improved its service – even allowing some campaign data to be passed if you’re using Google Analytics. You can also prepend or post append additional info, like hashtags. Most important, you can select which shortener you’d like… I go with bit.ly since it provides great stats.

Perhaps the single greatest improvement is the ability to take one feed and push it out to multiple Twitter accounts utilizing a single login. Twitterfeed has really grown up!
twitterfeed.png

6 Comments

  1. 1

    I wouldn’t completely abandon HootSuite Doug. When I need to schedule Tweets, HootSuite is great. And like you, I don’t like their ow.ly links. So what I do is go ahead and convert the links to bit.ly and then add those into the message. I don’t use HootSuite’s shortener and the links all get trafficked through bit.ly. Make sense?

  2. 2

    Chuck – you’re absolutely right. My last sentence promotes the use of Hootsuite outside of the feed aggregation. I think it’s a great tool as well!

  3. 3

    Doug while I dont use Hootsuite for other reasons (group limits being a big one) I have heard your complaint from others and it makes sense. I also agree with the point Chuck makes about going around ow.ly Im not sure if ow.ly allows but I like bit.ly because you can add a custom name to your shortened URL (thanks Chuck) Too many eyeballs are lost on combos of letters & numbers when they should be seeing your sites name or a teaser tag to get you to click through instead of all those letters and numbers. I also think Tweetdeck has made Hootsuite obsolete as long as you dont mind the process slowing your computer down. With bit.ly API integration and better multiple account management I think Tweetdeck is the way to go. If you need to schedule tweets there are numerous services that can be used aside from TD.

  4. 4

    I set up some feeds on tweet feed and the SEO tracking killed the link. I was really bummed out. One thing I will point out is Feedburner by Google will now do tweet feeds as well.

  5. 5

    I tried Hootsuite (when it had another name, if I’m not mistaken). But I found it difficult to manage multiple Twitter accounts that way so I dropped it. I am now using Co-Tweet to manage and post simultaneously to multiple Twitter accounts and to schedule future-dated tweets.

  6. 6

    Doug – I agree that the iFrame on Ow.ly is unfortunate. I got a link on twitter today to a story of particular interest to me (it is about a panel where I am one of the speakers) http://ow.ly/TRvM

    I have clicked on every possible place on Liz’s website and I can’t even get to a URL. It is completely stuck in the ow.ly iFrame. At least with a Facebook iFrame you can click through to the website it is framing.

    Like Chuck, what I am doing is creating Bit.ly’s and using those. For clients that enjoy Hootsuite – I will make sure they use their bit.ly account for URL shortener.

    I appreciate your pointing out that these iFrames have to be killing the SEO juice to the website they point to.

    They are probably still OK for photos and off site documents (such as .doc) that they let you load.

Leave a Reply