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SEO Firefox

Improve your SEO using Firefox

There are many ways to improve your SEO using Firefox, with myriad addons being available to install to help with different search engine optimization areas. SenSEO is one such addon that checks websites for on-page-SEO factors and tells you how well you’re performing in some important areas.

Be aware that you need to have Firebug installed, otherwise you’ll be unable to use SenSEO in any way.

Once you’ve got both installed, the instructions to use SenSEO are simple. While on the website you want to check, click on the Firebug logo in the bottom right of your browser and then select the SenSEO tab from the top of the Firebug panel. Another way is to click on the magnifying glass next to the Firebug logo, and this will take you straight to this point. On this tab enter in the keyword(s) you want to test the page, click ‘Inspect SEO Criteria’ and your results will be shown almost instantly.

The website is rated in seven areas on an A-F scale, giving an overall grade for your page. The sections judged are title tags, meta descriptions, robots.txt and sitemap.xml, headline tags, page content, domain and URL path. It’ll even recommended related keywords on some pages.

Each section is further broken down to show you where your page has passed, partially-passed and completely failed, allowing you to make changes in the appropriate places. The page content section, for example, tells you if you have duplicate content, if you’ve mentioned your keywords a sensible number of times and if all your images have alternative text. The ‘Show Components’ tab goes into further detail on many of these aspects, such as listing all your images and the alternative text associated with each one, if any, and how many header tags you’ve used.

These tools all come in very handy when judging a live page and making necessary changes, but aren’t so good if you want to test something before going live. It is possible to check a preview page but some of the tests will be different because of the preview nature of articles on sites such as WordPress or Ezine Articles.

While SenSEO aims to help you with raising yourself in Google’s SERPs, it even links to the Google Starter Guide as its manual, but no one truly knows the mechanics of the Google algorithm so a lot is just guess work.

The addon also has a whole section devoted to meta tags, despite Google saying that it doesn’t use this to rank sites. While it may be seen as a negative sign if you don’t have any meta tags, optimizing this area of a site is generally considered a waste of time.

Q: Does this mean that Google ignores all meta tags?
A: No, Google does support several other meta tags. This meta tags page documents more info on several meta tags that we do use. For example, we do sometimes use the “description” meta tag as the text for our search results snippets, as this screenshot shows:
picture of serp in google

Google Generated Description

meta description

Custom Crafted Meta Description

There’s also debate on how well some of these parameters are judged. On Sensational SEO’s explanation page, they recommend 5-7% for keyword density, while current thinking tends lean toward much lower percentages.

One bonus is that the plugin is often upgraded so changes in SEO are likely to be reflected in future editions, with suggestions on the official page often taken on board.

SEO Firefox addons are a valuable tool and although the ever-changing nature of search engine optimization means that some of these addons become quickly outdated, so getting one that’s up-to-date is going to be so in the future is a huge boost to your site. Although it has a few weaknesses, because SenSEO has frequent updates, it’s a promising sign for the future. It should hopefully continue to offer valuable insights on how to increase your site’s SEO performance and can be a consideration for your arsenal of SEO addons.

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