Archive for the ‘Training, Conferences, Webinars’ Category

Information Architecture: Navigation Best Practices for Big Site SEO (Webinar from SEOmoz with Rand Fishkin)

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

This is a recap from a webinar SEOmoz did a while back, with Rand Fishkin. Follow Rand on Twitter here.

Goals of successful information Architecture

  • Semantically logical structure (Zoo animals –> African Savannah –> Lions) – If your site architecture is logical, your users will spend more time on site, find what they want easier, and convert more often.
  • Minimize click depth (not JUST for search engines!) – so that users and search engines can reach any point on the site in a minimum number of site. Usability and SEO best practices are nearly identical.
  • Maximize usability of navigation

Tips for Semantically Useful Navigation

  • Initially design without keyword research – so that you aren’t bias in the way you organize by the keywords you discover. Rand suggests first organizing your content the way it makes sense to you and then incorporate the keywords that make sense for search engines, where they make sense.
  • Add  in keyword research based modifications to your draft IA
  • Validate architecture/path with non-SEOs – make sure that your navigation still makes sense to non-SEOs and non-web users

Tips for Minimal Click-Depth

  • Imitate the ideal navigation pyramid – in the first example, you’ll see you can get to 1 million pages with three clicks; in the second, you can only reach 150,000 pages with three clicks.

  • Broad linking at top levels – at the top level, link to very broad categories; link to popular subcategories from the homepage. Rand uses Metacritic as an example.
  • Editorial categorization > user-defined (hack: multi-level HTML sitemap – like this page at Rotten Tomatoes)

Tips for Usable Navigation

  • Obvious navigation elements (like with MailChimp)
  • Naming Conventions that Make Intent (not like Media Temple) – don’t use language no one outside your company won’t understand
  • User & usability testing (using something like Silverback 2.0)

Avoiding Common “Big Site” Problems

  • Duplicate content issues:
    • Rel Canonical tags (although sometimes it isn’t perfect) – you’ll lose a tiny bit of PR, but you’ll save yourself before bad things happen. Rand always suggests using the rel canonical for the absolute URL of pages for your article/blog/products section(s).
  • Google Webmaster Tools – use to ignore duplicate content
  • SEOmoz web app

Scraping and Re-Publishing

  • Scrappers (good or bad) that take content can be shown instead of original content.
  • Employ absolute URLs (as in <a href=””> anchor </a>) not relative (<a href=”…blog”> anchor </a>)
  • Don’t go overboard with bot blocking

Incomplete Indexation

  • Don’t look at the site: command and compare it day to day. (Read this post by Rand.) Use track referrals instead.
  • Check page “types” that don’t receive traffic (see this post by Rand)
  • XML sitemaps – helps search engines crawl large websites
  • Content syndication (use the allintitle: command)
  • RSS feeds
  • Twitter for indexation

“Search Results” in the SERPs

  • Create category “landing” pages
  • Remove obvious traces of “search” on landing pages

Faceted navigation

  • Rel canonical can help
  • Use AJAX to reload pages
  • Watch out for Google crawling Javascript
  • Offer facets only to loggin-in/cookie users


Sorry couldn’t stick around for the whole webinar, but here are two juicy tips:

Google Image search – less a new algorithm than a new interface. Text around image seems to be doing better than alt text.

Want a copy of Rand’s Firefox bookmarks? Here they are!

Lessons Learned and Action Items from the Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East 2010

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

The following is a selection of takeaways from the Search Marketing Expo (SMX) EastFind conversations around the conference on Twitter.

I apologize for those of you who kept up with my pseudo live blogging yammering last week. I’m taking some time to make some observations and actionable takeaways from the conference. If you want to skip ahead to something you’re especially interested in, the following are the topics covered:


Analytics for Social Media (from SMX East)

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and this session on Twitter.

Social Media Analytics with Jack Bauer

Preparation is key. Start with a social media checklist.

Part 1: Discovery

Identify your business objectives

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Increase brand trust
  • Increase interaction with customers
  • Increase brand loyalty
  • Sell more [your service/product]
  • Better understanding of user behavoir

What characteristics do you want associated with your brand?

  • Great customer service
  • Convenience
  • Low prices
  • Refreshing

How much time and resources are you willing to invest?

A few stats

  • 67% of Twitter users who follow a brand, are more like to buy that brand’s products
  • 60% of Facebook users who like a brand are more likely to recommend a brand to a friend
  • 74% of consumers are influence on buying decisions by fellow socializers

Part 2: Understanding your Audience

Listening – your parents were onto something

  • How are your customers using social media
  • Where are they participating?
  • Are they currently interacting with companies via social media?
  • What are they already saying about you?
  • What is their activity level on each social network?

Part 3: Defining KPIs

  • Define KPIs specific to each business objective
  • Cool social media marketing analytics
  • Use KPIs to measure, like:
    • Share of voice – Brand mentions/total mentions
    • Audience engagement – Comments + Shares + Trackbacks/Total Views
    • Conversation reach – Total people participating/Total audience views

Examples of Actionable KPIs

  • Number of people in a specific location who follow us on Twitter
  • Reduction in support costs
  • Number of product improvement suggestions from Facebook fans
  • Increase in product reviews & ratings
  • Reduction in sales cycles

Other KPIs to consider

  • Volume of consumer-created buzz
  • Seasonality of buzz
  • Rate of virality
  • Embeds/installs
  • Increases in searches
  • Rankings improvemnts
  • Demographics
  • Interaction/engagement rates
  • Number of interactions
  • Store locator views
  • Registrations by channel

KPI Evolution

  • The key to successful social media measurement is asking questions

Part 4: Tools for Insight

  • Scout Labs
  • Radian 6

Configuration Tips

Setup separate searches for:

  • Brand mentions
  • Product mentions
  • Events
  • Promotions
  • Competitors
  • Product launches

Taylor Pratt, Raven Internet Marketing Tools

Social Media Metrics

Content-oriented social media

Consumption = branding and organic social media presence


  • Traffic
    • Unique visits/page visits
    • CPM revenue
  • Visibility
    • Branding/buzz
    • Links
      • Long tail traffic
      • Search rankings (leads/sales)
  • Stickiness
    • Newsletter/RSS subscribers
    • Return visitors

Quantitative Metrics (KPIs)

  • Engagement
    • Comments (Not including spam, but do include negative comments)
    • Social votes/bookmarks
  • Consumption – traffic count
  • Micro-conversions
    • Subscribers
    • Fans/followers
  • Virality
    • Social shares/mentions
    • Links

Granular Metrics: Links

  • Volume of links for a number of pieces of content
  • Amount of links based on number of visits
  • Shift in link count over time
  • Competitive link growth
  • Links by category/topic
  • Links by social channel


  • Bookmarks
  • Downloads
  • Favorites
  • Feedback
  • Forward to a friend
  • Groups
  • Install widget
  • Invite/refer
  • Uploads
  • Wishlists

URL shorteners

  • Google URL shortener (

Comment engagement

  • Bring social comments into your blog with Disqus
  • Conversion rate = # visitor comments/# pieces of content
  • Compare to regular content vs. promoted content

Google Analytics

Google URL Builder

  • Create trackable link (Google URL builder)
    • Campaign name
    • Promotion start date
    • Delivery method
    • Medium
    • Format
  • Shorten your trackable link
  • Add your shortened trackable link
  • Track your URL in Google Analytics

Advanced Segments

  • Segment social visits from regular visits through Advanced Segments
  • Tie Advanced Segments to Goals

Other GA social analytics sources

  • Content > Content by title > Entrance Source
  • Click Map (content overlay)
  • Infographic tracking through GA
  • Google Social Analytics - GreaseMonkey for Firefox/Chrome
  • Google Analytics for Facebook pages – FBML markup

Social Sharing Measurement

Data Use

  • Start with a baseline measurement
  • Then do monthly audits


  • Social media metrics vary with strategies, goals, sites, etc.
  • Track anything possible for insight
  • Social media is not just about numbers
  • Measuring social media does not = ROI for social media

Jordan KastelerBlueGlass Interactive Inc.

SEO & Competitive Analysis (from SMX East)

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Why competitive analysis?

The value of competitive analysis in organic SEO:

  • No lonely metrics
  • Managing expectations
  • Steal ideas & strategies
  • Ammunition

No lonely metrics

What can context do for you?

  • It can make more impact
  • Benchmark where you stand against your competitors
  • Makes you more persuasive (or sexy) – like using rich snippets

Competitive Analysis Tool Roundup

  • Keyword research – what keywords are your competitors targeting?
    • SpyFu
    • iSpionage
    • KeywordSpy
    • SEMRush
    • Google Keyword Research Tool
  • Keyword research – what’s actually sending traffic to your competition?
    • Alexa
    • Hitwise
    • ComScore
    • NetRatings
  • Goals and benchmarking
    • Google allintitle:, allinurl:
    • SEOmoz keyword difficulty
    • siteopsus – for bulk allintitle search
    • SEO for Firefox
    • Google AdWords Tool for paid
  • Ranks and traffic
    • Quantcast
    • Google Trends for Websites
    • Google Analytics Benchmarking
    • Advanced Web Ranking
    • SEMRush
  • Link building
    • Majestic SEO
    • Open Site Exployrer
    • Wordtracker Link Builder
    • Advanced Link Manager
  • Social media listening
    • Twitter
      • Follow on Twitter
      • Twazzup
      • Topsy
      • Tweetdeck
      • Tweetbeep alerts
      • The archivist
      • Trendrr
    • Facebook
      • Facebook’s own search
      • SocialSenseFB
      • Like their company page
  • Reputation monitoring
    • iGoogle and Google Alerts
    • BrandsEye
    • radian6
    • socialmention
    • netvibes
    • Sprout Social

Gradiva CouzinGravity Search Marketing

Competitive Research

How much should I be spending on my SEO campaign?

  • How much am I spending now?
  • How large is my market share?
  • How large do I want my market to be?

What kind of content do my competitors have?

  • Training?
  • Introductions?

What do I need to do?

  • Blog mentions – check out Digg,, Yahoo Site Explorer
  • Social media widgets
  • Press releases

Jeff MacGurn, Covario

Where can you compete now?

If you are more established: Decide where you can make progress

Tools for competition research

  • Compete for traffic funnel
  • SpyFu for keywords
  • Google Insights for search

Natural search

  • Open site explorer (has anchor text and page importance)
  • Majestic SEO

Pay attention to

  • Content analysis
  • Add content
  • Add alternative keywords and phrases to your pages to cast a wider net
  • Internal links
  • External links

Dave Cook, TheFind

SEO & Competitor Analysis: This is War

Identifying Targets

Identify broad and niche competitors:

  • Broad competitor: competitor in your market
  • Niche competitor: competitor for a segment of your market

How to identify competitors

  • Take note of competitors routinely showing up for related searches
  • Ask client for 10-20 competitors
  • Survey customers
  • Research industry associates, forums, and networks

Operation Search: Internal Structure

Keyword analysis

  • What keywords do they believe are a priority?
  • What keywords they are targeting that you should?
  • How well are they ranking for their targeted keywords?
  • How are they optimizing their title tag structure?

Content Analysis

  • What keywords are they focusing headlines on?
  • Are they focusing heavily on branding/optimization?
  • Are they optimizing their internal link strucutre?
  • How often are they creating new content?
  • What types of content are they creating?

Technical Analysis

  • How well is their site rendering in the search engines
  • How well are they optimizing their navigation?
  • What are their calls to action? (Are they obvious?)
  • How well is their site being indexed in the SERPs?
  • How clean is their HTML?
  • How quickly is their site rendering?

Operation Anchor: External Structure

Backlink Profile

  • Total number of backlinks (Majestic SEO)
  • Date backlinks were created
  • The pages receiving the most backlinks (Majestic SEO)
  • Anchor text being used
  • What percentage are images/nofollow?

Types of Links

  • What forums are they participating in?
  • What associations/organizations are they members of?
  • What conferences are they sponsoring?
  • What blogs are they guest posting on?
  • Can you tell if they are buying links?


  • What are they doing to acquire these links?
  • What is their content creation strategy? (guest blogging, viral content, free tools, widgets, conducting interviews, holding contests?)
  • Are people reviewing their products on their own site?
  • Where are they getting mentions and what are the sentiment of those mentions?

Enemy Surveillance Program

  • After initial competitor review, revisit every quarter
  • Determine how their strategy is evolving:
    • Rankings increased/decreased?
    • Inbound links?
    • Site grown?
    • Link bait programs?
    • Successes? Failures?
  • How does this compare to your site?
  • Are there any new links, communities, keywords for you to target?

Taylor Pratt, Raven Internet Marketing Tools

Credit Where Credit is Due: Demystifying Attribution (from SMX East)

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Cross Channel Attribution

  • Unified Tracking: track interaction of the user with all media channels at one place.
  • Attribute and Analyze
    • Model how different factors contribute to conversion
    • Model how factors interact with each other
  • Optimize: Allocate media spend based on cross-channel models

Unified Tracking

  • On average, there are 4-6 touchpoints across before conversion
  • Conversion Data (over 10,000) for several clients
  • Identify key variables influencing conversions
  • The more time it takes to convert, the less likely a conversion will take place.
  • Relative importance of conversions
    • 70% time to convert
    • 20% first touch source
    • 7% search engine
    • 3% brand term

What is the chief limitation of revenue attribution?


  • First prerequisite: unified tracking program
  • Attribution is a partial solution
  • Attribution + Algorithmic Optimization is the solution for answering the media mix question

Siddharth Shah, Efficient Frontier

Improving ROI through Web Analytics

Success means different things to different people.

Test A/B pages with bounce rate, but be sure to check conversion rates down the funnel!

3 Tips for Better Attribution

  1. Look at the whole picture
  2. Use a fair measure of success
  3. Know your limits

1. Look at the whole picture

  • Window shopping
  • Entering the store
  • Asking questions
  • Trying it on
  • Buying it

Look at the whole sales cycle

  • Awareness
  • Interest
  • Consideration
  • Purchase
  • Retention

Solution: create a weighted metric

Assigning value to behaviors for “assists”

Which is more valuable?

  • Identify online behaviors that correlate with conversion
  • Analyze trends to assign to corresponding value
    • Regression Analysis – built into MS Excel
  • Optimize to align with weighted metric

When to use weighted metrics

  • Long sales cycles
  • Multiple “successes”
  • Offline sales
  • Efficient campaigns

2. Use a fair measure of success

The problem with “last click”

Tools that are starting to get the message

  • Omniture Markeitng Channels
  • Google Search Trends
  • Google Analytics “first click” hack
  • Interim solution: combine first + last click

3. Know your limits

  • Correlation does not imply causation
  • No crystal ball
  • Review regularly

Always be testing!

David Sprinkle, ROI Labs

Demystifying Attribution: Two myths

Myth 1: We need to be perfect in order to do it

You don’t need to have a PhD in Math to get attribution right

The perfect is the enemy of the good. -Voltaire

Evolution of Attribution Management

  • Last click
  • Even
  • Exclusions
  • Rules based
  • Algorithmic

Myth 2: Isn’t attribution just about moving money around?

Just because you have the same amount of money at the end of the month doesn’t mean you should attribute where it comes from so that next month you can optimize accordingly.

Adam Goldberg, ClearSaleing

Demystifying Attribution

Deep down:

  • Consumers are constatntly moving around the purchase path
  • Multiple touchpoints could all lead to a conversion

Early on looking at attribution:

  • Lots of data, no clear takeaways
  • Data would only show certain channels based on system redirects
  • Or to get the whole picture, you were looking at a hefty price tag

First steps toward attribution:

  • Attribution through an ad serving platform
  • Able to track 2 channels and 10 touch points
  • Found a 15% overlap in revenue attributed
  • Proved the need for a deeper level of understanding

What they needed to make some impact:

  • A solution built to track all digital activities
  • Easy to implement with strong customer support
  • Flexible in its attribution models and accommodated multiple views
  • Ability to report back at an actual profit level

In action: affiliate valuation

  • Ensure affiliates aren’t over inflating credit
  • On last click model, affiliate was converting over 10%
  • Affiliate was only ‘introducing’ the transaction 2% of the time
  • Action: renegotiate pricing structure

In action: network valuation

  • Better evaluate individual network performance (consumer path and strength of performance)
  • Layer in segmentation (acquisition, LTV)
  • Use data to make more targeted and efficient buys

Mixed Media Modeling

  • Weight the incrementality of channel buys
  • Assign credit in a conversion path against these findings
  • Allows for real time ‘exclusion’ set
  • Leads to more accurate judgement on each individual channel’s impact

Danielle Smith, Range Online Media

More coverage of this session

Actionable Metrics and Diagnostics (from SMX East)

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Optimize the Google Store: SEO in 15 minutes


  1. Sign up for Webmaster Tools email forwarding
  2. Utilize search queries
  3. Focus on one item

1. Webmaster Tools email forwarding: Receive site alerts from Google straight to your inbox

  • Malware notification
  • Alerts in crawl errors

2. Make the most of search queries

  • Highlight/star the terms for which you want to rank
  • Deprioritize queries that are unlikely to help your conversions

Focus on starred search queries within Webmaster Tools

Improve your query in search results:

  • Check for appealing titles and snippets (descriptive and matches user’s intent)
  • Learn tips from the other results

Sell like hot cakes!

3. Target your content to match your audience (Keywords)

  • Write content that matches your query terms
  • Webmaster Tools provides an overview of keywords

Check for duplicates in results

  • May be possible to consolidate PageRank between duplicate/near duplicate pages
  • Pages displayed should be diverse in content

Reduce duplicate content

  • Check search queries
  • Review HTML suggestions
  • Select canonical
  • Use 301 permanent redirects where possible
  • Implement rel=”canonical”
  • Utilize URL parameter handling

Improve crawl efficiency

  • Recommend behavior to Googlebot through URL parameter handling
  • Check for 404s
  • Fix broken links: crawl error sources – bring users and linking properties to the right URLs
  • Prioritize your content – internal links
  • Help users and engines quickly find your important pages
  • Verify you’re linking as expected
  • Make text/links accessible
  • Fetch as Googlebot
    • Links and text should be clearly visible
    • URL rewriting/redirect issues uncovered
  • JS loaded text common issues with video, even Video Sitemaps

User happiness: site performance

The recap

  • Email forwarding
  • Search queries
  • Keywords to content
  • Reduce duplicated in crawling and indexing
  • Crawl errors to fix broken links
  • Prioritize content: internal links
  • Verify crawler access: Fetch as Googlebot
  • Site performance review in Google Webmaster Tools

Maile Ohye, Google

18 Metrics to Answer Questions

1. How much SEO do I really have?

Filter out branded traffic

2. Is my site what I think it is about?

Google Webmaster Tools –> keywords (Does Google think my site is about what I do?)

3. Is my site authoritative?

  • SEOmoz authority rank (part 1)
  • How many indexed pages does Google have for you? (part 2)

4. How does my site’s authority stack up against competition’s

  • How many domains link to your’s vs. your competitor’s
  • How many links to your’s vs. your competitor’s
  • (Data warning: link data is inconsistent)

5. Am I a good linkbuilder?

How many links do you have to your homepage? (Google Webmaster Tools links to site à links to homepage only)

6. Was that a valuable link? (A valuable link is one that gives you traffic)

Google Analytics – traffic from links

7. Have I lost some links?

Google Webmaster Tools – check 404 errors for pages that are losing links

8. How spammy is my link profile?

SEOmoz report (Domain mozTrust vs. mozRank – should be very similar)

9. Should I give up on this keyword?

SEOmoz report (backlinking report)

10.  Do I nail the long tail?

  • Look at the number of keywords bringing traffic to your site (Google Analytics)
  • Look at number of landing pages (Google Analytics)
  • How many pages does Google have indexed in my site (site: command)

11.  Is my site a bunch of useless templates?

Crawl vs. Index ratio (just because it’s crawled, doesn’t mean it’s indexed)

12.  Does my site look fat in these jeans?

  • Site performance (Google Webmaster Tools spped)
  • Site speed (YSlow)

13.  Will prospective partners take my call?

Business often starts with PR review

14.  Does my site lack fresh content?

Review site logs to see what your most-crawled pages are

Conrad Saam, Avvo

More Metrics and Diagnostics

Check server log to see how often GoogleBot:

  • Number of pages crawled
  • Canonicalization
  • 302s

Better than rankings reports (combo of Analytics and Webmaster Tools)

  • Query clusters
  • Traffic
  • Search behavior
  • Google impressions and clicks

Vanessa Fox, Search Engine Land

Go from Interested to Informed

Social media metrics that count

  • Hit the right target
  • Social metrics for social intelligence
  • Online metrics: bridging the gap
  • Additional resources

Hit the right target

Goals ensure that metrics are aimed at the right targets

Answer these 4 questions before you track social media

  1. What business questions are we trying to have answered?
  2. What are we planning/willing to do with the findings?
  3. What are our short-term goals for our social media program?
  4. What are our long-term goals for our social media program?

Social media goals

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Decrease customer attrition
  • Uncover valuable market insights and trends

Social metrics for social intelligence

  • Brand awareness metrics:
    • Volumes of conversation around your brand
    • Volumes of conversation around your competitors
    • Affinity groups and influencers
    • Sites where your brand conversation happens
  • Audience sentiment metrics:
    • Audience sentiment around your brand
    • Audience sentiment around your compeititor’s brand
    • Audience affinity groups and influencers
  • Corporate engagement
  • Outcomes and findings:
    • Causes in shifts and spikes in volume
    • Causes in shifts and spikes in sentiment
    • Insights and ongoing metrics that track back to your original goal

Vicki Blair, Visible Technologies

More coverage of this session

Facebook SEO: Free Ways to be Found on Facebook (from SMX East)

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Facebook Organic SEO & Naughty Ranking Tips

It’s hard to get in the SERPs for Facebook

aimClear tested 5 account (4 mature accounts, 1 totally new)

Personalization effects

These elements affect personalization and the way results appear when you’re logged in:

  • You like it
  • Your friend likes it
  • You’ve got 2nd degree friends
  • You’ve been invited
  • You’ve visited it before
  • You’ve listed it as an interest on profile

Inside the autocomplete box

  • 2-8 results
  • “I’m feeling lucky”
  • Masking crappy SERPs
  • Most important to rank

How to rank in autocomplete box

  • Your name
  • Evens you are invited to
  • Friend with keyword in name
  • 2nd degree friend with keyword in name
  • Questions with keyword in it and number of answers
  • App you’ve used
  • Internal/external page and interest you have on profile
  • Page friend likes (in tandem w/ number of friends and total likes)
  • Group you have joined

Facebook SERP Anatomy

About All results

  • Previous de facto search hub
  • Requires additional click to see results
  • All FB content types battle it out!

How to rank in All Results

  • People – Friends or 2nd degree friends with keyword in name
  • Page – with enough like can beat friends…sometimes
  • Keyword in posts by friends
  • Web results (fueled by Bing)

About People results

  • Purely human search
  • Pay attention to filters!

How to rank for People results

  • Keyword in friend or 2nd degree friends (Name)
  • Keyword in friend or 2nd degree friends (workplace, school aka network)
  • Keyword in anyone’s name/city/workplace/school/network

About Pages results

  • Confusing
  • Lumped together – admistered pages, community pages, non FB pages
  • Heavily affected by personalization

How to rank for Pages results

  • Too messed up to rank logically
  • General guidelines – keywords play a large role, keyword density
  • Put keywords – name, description

About Group results

  • Being a member
  • Friends are a member
  • Keywords in title
  • Number of members

About Event results

  • Not based on geo
  • Not based on friends attending
  • Not based on invited
  • Not really keyword relevant
  • (basically, it sucks)

How to rank for Event results

  • Get people to RSVP as attending (not maybe)
  • Get people to visit page at least once
  • Put your high value keyword  first
  • Don’t make event names too long

About Apps results

  • You are already a fan/user
  • Your friend is a fan/user

How to rank for Apps results

  • Keyword in title, body
  • Buy fans/users

Facebook questions

  • Often outrank more valuable/verteran content

How to rank for Questions

  • Keyword in title, answer, in URL
  • Multi-user engagement
  • Generate something of value to community

Naughty to the Naughtiest ranking trick (Don’t do this at home)

  • Facebook PPC and personalization
  • Create ads to FB properties (those can’t help but click ads)
  • Internal page destination has keyword rich title
  • Shows up in search box
  • Keyword rich profiles
  • Gain friends somehow
  • Wait a bit to get FB indexed
  • Promote on your wall
  • Create an even with keyword in title and body
  • Invite non-friends (with just email address)
  • Invitee types keyword  – they don’t even have to RSVP!
  • Dominate search box for any keyword

Marty Weintraub, President, aimClear

Facebook SEO

Facebook search is punctuation sensitive

Methods for ranking pages

  • Use a relevant page name
  • Build the number of fans (and number of fan friends)
  • Engage in relevant current all searches
  • Search results

Facebook Questions – Shows heavily in suggest box – not necessarily all search results

Facebook Events – Be aware of spam (because of messaging from events)

The Future? Page browser – see pages you’re a fan of and suggested pages

How to prepare for Facebook Page Browser? Ads – make sure you include likes and interests to drive traffic to page

Free Tricks to Boost Your Fans

  • Charity – donate money to a charity to acquire fans
  • Must be a fan to comment (or even see) wall; for every comment, we’ll give money
  • Create exclusive content – “visible to connection” tag (If you want to see (coupons, % off, deal), then become a fan) Use it for: coupons, sales, etc.
  • Typical method – “Find us on Facebook” = NOT GOOD; fix = use QR code instead, use for FB places too

Greg Finn, Cypress North

Facebook SEO

Optimizing your status updates in Facebook

  • Status update doesn’t appear on public page, unless you plan ahead and do some research to have them show up
  • Appears to be private/controlled page, search for the “open” page
  • Include popular keywords
  • Tag referenced pages to increase presence

Optimizing page code for Facebook

Use open graph code: (Yelp does a good job of this.)

Chris Silver Smith, KeyRelevance

Keynote Conversation with Yelp COO Geoff Donaker (from SMX East)

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference on Twitter.

Yelp stats

  • 38 million unique visitors last month (both web and mobile users)
  • 13 million reviews

Yelp usage

  • Weekdays: is used far more than Yelp mobile
  • Weekends: Yelp mobile usage jumps far above
  • Saturday: 50% of Yelp searches are mobile

Tips for success

  • Responsiveness – get in touch with your customers
  • Keep it positive and respond to negative reviews

Is mobile “here” for Yelp?

Yes. Most popular apps are used on iPhone, Blackberry, and Android. There are approximately 3 million unique devices using Yelp monthly.

Ecommerce on Yelp

  • Offer more options
  • Email Deal of the Day


Put listings at the top of your feed that have been reviewed in your area (without having to log in!)

Fun facts

  • #1 form of contribution on desktops: reviews
  • On the mobile app, you can only draft a review. Then you have to go online and finish writing it and publish.
  • “Yelp is a lifestyle blog”

What does the future hold?

  1. Mobile
  2. Cities – deeper reach in cities and increase the number of cities included
  3. More ad products – continue to offer more products

Geoff Donaker, Yelp

Location Services: The New Local Search? (from SMX East)

Monday, October 4th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Foursquare “Advertiser” Survey a Few Months Later

Highlights from 1st survey

  • Majority of “advertisers” have been on Foursquare for about 6 months
  • More “advertisers” believe Foursquare helps grow their business than not
  • Most are tracking check-ins
  • Most have claimed Google Places page (and now Facebook Places)
  • Only 10% say they’d pay for it

Interesting location-based services user statistics

  • Between June and October 2010, advertisers are still seeing the benefit of using it
  • Advertisers are (overwhelmingly) using Yelp and Facebook Places
  • Advertisers have started valuing Foursquare users less over the past four months


  • Yelp and Facebook Places are gaining in adoption
  • Majority of respondents on Foursquare greater than 6 months
  • Mobile and social users 70% likely to make a buying decision

Will Scott, President, Search Influence

The New Local Search

Changes in Local Search

  • Address & Map
  • What’s nearby
  • How good is the place
  • Who’s nearby
  • How “worthy” is that person and their opinion
  • It’s all about reputation

Additional data points

  • Every data field accepted by a publisher represents traffic and revenue opportunities
  • Business overlook simple ones that are vital – like hours of operation
  • Video is the future – even if it is a simple slideshow hosted on YouTube
  • Small businesses can use a Facebook page if they do not have a website

How to Make Businesses Disappear

  • Messing with names – stuffing keywords
  • Call tracking numbers
  • Address social climbing
  • Category lapses
  • Missing data elements
  • Insufficient distribution

Chris Travers, Universal Business Listing

Yelp Mobile

1/3 of searches come from the mobile app

Case study: Optometrist in Brooklyn

  • Offers customers a gift card for ice cream down the street and $25 a visit if they check in on Yelp
  • Has 5-star rating with 76 reviews

Kevin Lee, Yelp

Evolution of Local Search

  1. Find out what
  2. Find out what and where
  3. Find out the what and where with context of who
  4. Find out the what and where with context of who and when

NAP = Name, Address, Phone number

Gib Olander, Director of Business Development, Localeze

What’s New with Local Search (from SMX East)

Monday, October 4th, 2010

The following is a recap from a session at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) East. Follow the conference and session on Twitter.

Google Maps has an evolved algorithm

  • Improved spam detection/reducation
  • Increased numbers of information sources
  • Has begun absorbing microformats/RDFa/Micro-data
  • Shifted to include “PlaceRank”

Google Maps spam detection/reducation

  • Hired more human staff reviewers to check data
  • Reported doing phone verification from offshore
  • Algortithmic “skepticism” – new listings need to have reinforcements from multiple authoritative sources (IYPs, data aggregators, local info sites, etc.)


Relative Popularity – what can help you rank better on Google Maps

  • Buzz
  • Wikipedia
  • Photos
  • Videos

Businesses might have to focus on PR to promote area to drive popularity and improve business popularity

What are citations/references?

  • Links to website
  • Mentions of website domain in plain text
  • Mentions of business name
  • Mentions of business street address/place
  • Mentions of business phone number

What else might produce citations?

  • Tweets about a place
  • Checkins and Facebook

What to do:

Clean up your profiles with something like UBL Citation and Auditing Tool

Chris Silver SmithKeyRelevance

Tools for Local Search

Local tools to save time

Local tools for competitive analysis

  • Location Citation Finder – find top places for citations
    • Uses user input
  • – competitive analsis
    • Uncover and emulate common attributes
    • Citation scraper
    • Review scraper
    • Category scraper
  • – industrial strength multi location data confusion tool (best for chains, multi-location businesses)
    • Checks listings on important local sites
    • Sales and reporting tool

Mary Bowling, seOverflow

Local Search, Today: Facebook Places & Google Instant

Facebook Local Business Pages

  • Address/info optional
  • Interact with Facebookers
  • CS, Events
  • Like button
  • Embed web page
  • Promote, ads

Facebook Place Pages

  • Location/info required
  • Lightweight Local Business Page
  • User check in
  • Claiming process
  • Can merge with a Local Business Page

Google Places - SEO benefit via web citations

Facebook Places – is SEO void

Facebook Local Business Pages - 25-50% associated!

Smartphones – Facebook Places (ContextOptional, PlacePop, NearbyFriends, and more)

Targeting “location keywords” may become less relevant for local businesses. (Google automatically uses your location.)

  • Google can triangulate your location from their street view
  • IP address
  • Logged into account

David Rodecker,

Call Advertising: Three Trends in Local Search

1. Advertisers are getting more sophisticated in how they track calls

  • Establishing more granular ad groups
  • Incorporating call mining to:
    • Reverse-engineer conversion data
    • Discover keyword “nuggets”
  • Leveraging call recording to learn how ad copy impacts consumer intent
  • Piloting IVR testing and targeting

2. The debate over tracking numbers in ad copy is getting more intense

  • Fans think:
    • It adds legitimacy to the listing
    • Gives consumers another way to respond
    • Increases Search ROI
  • Non-fans think:
    • It takes up too much space
    • It may depress quality score
    • Might create user dissonance

3. Mobile search provides an opportunity to reach a completely new audience

  • Consumers are leveraging feature phones to become more efficient
  • They are placing calls to businesses as a way to redeem dead time (when they wouldn’t have been able to in the past)
  • Many calls happen instantly at need
  • Consumers are increasingly likely to place a call in response to an ad

Brent Turner, Marchex, Inc.

What’s New with Local Search?

  • Searchers now EXPECT Local Results…
  • Engines are responding with relevant products
  • and Advertisers are responding with budgets (1/$10 of local ad spend is online; in 3 years, it will be 1/$4)

The Holy Grail? Measureable return!

  • Calls
  • Leads
  • Conversions

Sivan Metzger, KENSHOO

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