4 Essential SEO Infographics

A lot has changed in the last 3 years in Google’s search algorithms, from Caffeine, to Freshness, to Penguin to Panda. Moving the emphasis to social signals and content. So, you might think the work of an SEO consultant has changed dramatically. When, in fact, it hasn’t. Even in 2009, as evidenced in this post from Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz, the majority of time is spent:

"Convincing the inexperienced that SEO is a worthwhile, high ROI channel, worthy of investment + Acquiring budget and resources to successfully accomplish critical tasks."

Even 3 years later, much of this applies to the role of SEO, and social and content marketing. 

Would you agree? Isn’t this how you STILL spend your time? 

10 July 2012 ·

SEO for Start-ups in 10 Minutes [VIDEO]

Google just released this video with tips for Start-ups on SEO best practices. As I mentioned in my post yesterday, 5 Reasons to Focus SEO on Content, “classic SEO” techniques such as stuffing keywords into the Meta data just don’t work anymore, since Google ignores all of those factors now and focuses primarily on content and social signals.

To further illustrate the point that content is king. Check out the video and these key takeaways from Google’s Maile Ohye, developer advocate on Google’s Webmaster Central Team:

“It’s great to have a fancy site, but try not to focus so much on site fanciness that you don’t actually have indexable and searchable text.

"You want to use relevant keywords naturally in your text. These keywords are like query terms that normal people would use to find your product or your business.”

"Each page should include a unique topic, title and meta description for the snippet that appears below the link listed on the Google search results page, but meta keywords tags aren’t needed. Keywords should be in the file name and typed with lower case letters."

Relevant and engaging content is the unifying factor here. For social media marketing Ohye recommends:

“Play to your authentic strengths,” she added. “It’s likely that your company has limited resources so if your CEO likes to tweet, go ahead and let them. If you have a salesperson who really enjoys Facebook, that’s terrific… and let them interact with the community there.”

You can see how this all fits into our F.A.R.E. social and content marketing model (Frequent, Authentic, Relevant, and Engaging), where frequency is key to boost the social signals, and authenticity is important as developers communicate with developers and the CEO with members of his/her community, etc. 

To learn more about how we can help your start-up, contact Make Good Social today.

29 June 2012 ·

5 Reasons Why You Need to Focus Your SEO on Content

By now, most of you have probably implemented many traditional SEO techniques, keywords in Meta Data, keywords on page, as many inbound links as possible, etc. Now, some of those factors might be actually hurting your search ranking.

According to the latest ranking factors data from Searchmetrics the following factors are most relevant for a good ranking in Google search results:

  1. Social media signals: social signals from Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are frequently associated with good rankings. So that means you need quality content that people are willing to share. Use our F.A.R.E. Content model to create content people will be willing to share.
  2. Brands have the advantage: Mainly because they produce more content and achieve higher engagement and social signals. You can start making a dent in a niche by focusing on content.
  3. Too much advertising is detrimental: The algorithms appear to prefer sites that have a balanced approach between content and ads. So focus on content, not ads on your site.
  4. Link quality is essential: Backlinks are still important but quantity is not the only important thing. Inbound links from poor quality sites can actually harm your ranking.
  5. Keywords in domains still important and frequently attract top results: despite all the rumors to the contrary, keyword domains are still alive and well and are often in the top rankings.
Here’s the ranking factors chart from Searchmetrics:

Tell us what you’re seeing on your site. Do you agree, is conventional SEO dead?
Image courtesy of Network Solutions

27 June 2012 ·

4 New Ways Google Algorithm Changes Impact Content Freshness

Google Freshness Image via the searchmetrics.com blog

As we’ve discussed previously on this blog, Google is continuously looking to improve the quality of its search results.

Chris Crum at WebProNews reported yesterday on the 4 primary factors:

  • Better detection of major new events. [project codename “Freshness”] This change helps ensure that Google can return fresh web results in realtime seconds after a major event occurs.
  • Smoother ranking functions for freshness. [launch codename “flsp”, project codename “Freshness”] This change replaces a number of thresholds used for identifying fresh documents with more continuous functions.
  • Better detection of searches looking for fresh content. [launch codename “Pineapples”, project codename “Freshness”] This change introduces a brand new classifier to help detect searches that are likely looking for fresh content.
  • Freshness algorithm simplifications. [launch codename “febofu”, project codename “Freshness”] This month we rolled out a simplification to our freshness algorithms, which will make it easier to understand bugs and tune signals.

So, what does this mean to you?

Continue to focus on F.A.R.E. Content (frequent, authentic, relevant and engaging) so you best take advantage of Google’s emphasis on what is new, high-quality, relevant content.

What are your experiences with the Google updates? Are you seeing better search results? Or, are the search results, less relevant, but more recent?

8 June 2012 ·

About Me

Chris Bechtel, Principal and Chief Marketing Officer at Make Good Social, a division of Blue Deer LLC a full-service marketing and business development consulting firm for start-ups and growth-stage organizations focused on strategy + services for demand generation, revenue and growth. Chris is a content marketing, demand generation, social media marketing, online PR professional and growth hacker who has spent more than 15 years working with consumer and B2B startup tech companies as well as leading Fortune 500 companies including ACS (a Xerox Co.), City National Bank, Epson, and Target extend the reach of their content online.

Contact Me: about.me/chrisbechtel

Make Good Social
Blue Deer LLC