Manchester Freelance SEO Challenge Update


OK, so in my last SEO related post, I talk about gunning for the top spot in Google for “manchester freelance” which has a healthy competition of nearly three million results.

10 hours after making the SEO changes I’m on the first page of Google at position 4 which is again a lot quicker than I expected and has made me eat my words:

I don’t expect this to happen overnight though!

Edit: July 8th @ 12:30 – Now at position 2!

Some Bus drivers…

Yes, it’s true, some bus drivers just blatently exist just to piss people off and to massage their overly sized ego.

I’m sure they’re not all like that but the bus driver this morning very kindly waited until I’d ran all the way to the door of the bus, only to pull away at the perfect time, leaving me replay the Peter Kay sketch (at the bottom).

Much to my surprise (as there was no traffic) I caught the bus up 3 stops down the road, tried to summon up a snarky comment, but unfortunately I’m still recovering from the trauma of actually running!


The Manchester Freelance SEO Challenge

The other day I thought that getting to the top of Google for “Stockport Freelancer” would be too niche, too easy, and a waste of time so I decided to opt for “Manchester Freelancer” which is a tad more broad with fairly healthy competition, around 450,000 results.

However I made one blog post and within an hour I was appearing at the top of Google for “Manchester Freelancer” which surprised me a little. It goes to show though how much Google likes trusted platforms such as WordPress as publishing engines, and combined with it’s automatic pinging service, SEO starts to become a breeze.

For some reason though, Google wants to correct the search term to “Manchester Freelance” (minus the ‘r’) which has six times the competition, over 2,600,000 results. Therefore I’m going to modify the SEO strategy slightly to see if I can make a dent in that. I don’t expect this to happen overnight though!

Blank Pages in WordPress when changing themes

Whoopsie, I broke my WordPress installation (it’s fixed now obviously!) I switched to another theme/template and when it tried to refresh both the frontend, and admin area were just blank.

Going through the path of logic, I started at the beginning to find the bottleneck. The “index.php” file was fine, this then requires “wp-blog-header.php” which in turn requires “wp-load.php”. From then on I was just blagging my way through, because at that point I got lost. Logic isn’t my strongpoint.

Anyways, it turns out to be a theme problem, here’s the fix.

  1. Login to your phpMyAdmin and select your WordPress database.
  2. Go to the wp_options table.
  3. Find option_id 49 and 50 which relate to the template and stylesheet.
  4. Change these to another template which you had installed, or if you still have default installed, just change the value of these fields to “default” without the quotes.

Then simply visit your website and things should load normally!