Excel Tables, Pivots and VLOOKUP
Because Excel is Fun...

Troy Boileau | SEO & Inbound Marketing Consultant

For Powered b...
We’re in business because we believe that great brands need
both voice and visibility in order to connect people with what...
Using VLOOKUP
Proper Table Use
Fun With Pivot Tables
Using VLOOKUP
http://xkcd.com/
Using VLOOKUP
What is VLOOKUP
VLOOKUP is an Excel function that can find the value of a specific column in
a data-set that...
Using VLOOKUP
What is VLOOKUP
I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that
the equation is:
...
Using VLOOKUP
What is VLOOKUP
I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that
the equation is:
...
Using VLOOKUP
What is VLOOKUP
I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that
the equation is:
...
Using VLOOKUP
What is VLOOKUP
This equation on the sheet below will return the result “2.1”
=VLOOKUP(“widgets”,A2:D7,4,FAL...
Using VLOOKUP
Tricks
Locking Formulas:
Always lock ($) the data set when you’re filling down. If I have the simple
formula...
Using VLOOKUP
Problem: Fill It Down
This is our data set, which is in ‘Sheet 1’
We want to use our “widgets” equation
but ...
Using VLOOKUP
Problem: Fill It Down
The answer is:
=VLOOKUP(A2,’Sheet 1’!A$2:D$7,4,FALSE)
We only changed two things. One,...
VLOOKUP Case Study

Rank Tracking with GWT
Questions?
Proper Table Use
Proper Table Use
Hierarchy Issues
Normally we think of information hierarchy as flat but defined by tags, e.g.
• H1
• Data...
Proper Table Use
Hierarchy Issues
Tables like that lose out on all of Excel’s functionality. They also miss the
point of E...
Proper Table Use
Disparate Tables
We also tend to think of tables as answers to one specific question.
Here I’m finding or...
Proper Table Use
Disparate Tables
But now the client wants to know how much organic traffic each persona
has. Unfortunatel...
Proper Table Use
Disparate Tables
Going back to our original rule,
Every cell is a value of its header and is contextual t...
Table Use Case Study

On-Page SEO Document
Questions?
VLOOKUP Case Study

Mapping Emails to Domains
Fun With Pivot Tables
Fun With Pivot Tables
Pivot Table Fields
Let’s find a couple of ways to visualize this data set:
Fun With Pivot Tables
Pivot Table Fields
The Field List just includes the column headings, which we can use in our
reports...
Fun With Pivot Tables
Pivot Table Fields
While you’d Filter to see only one or a subset of data for specific Months,
you c...
Fun With Pivot Tables
Pivot Table Fields
You can also nest rows and columns to make them foldable. For example, I
want to ...
Fun With Pivot Tables
Value Types
The basic value types (SUM which adds everything, COUNT which counts
the number of rows,...
Pivot Table Case Study

Keyword Position Change
Questions?
VLOOKUP Case Study

Number of Links to Target Pages
Questions?
A Big Thanks to Alex Rascanu and #InboundTO

Stay in Touch
Twitter: @troyfawkes
Google+: google.com/+TroyBoileau
Email: tr...
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Excel Training for SEOs

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Excel Training for SEOs

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Excel Training for SEOs

  1. 1. Excel Tables, Pivots and VLOOKUP Because Excel is Fun... Troy Boileau | SEO & Inbound Marketing Consultant For Powered by Search Internal | December 2013
  2. 2. We’re in business because we believe that great brands need both voice and visibility in order to connect people with what matters. A boutique, full-service digital marketing agency in Toronto, Powered by Search is a PROFIT HOT 50-ranked agency that delivers search engine optimization, pay per click advertising, local search, social media marketing, and online reputation management services. Some of our clients... Featured in...
  3. 3. Using VLOOKUP Proper Table Use Fun With Pivot Tables
  4. 4. Using VLOOKUP
  5. 5. http://xkcd.com/
  6. 6. Using VLOOKUP What is VLOOKUP VLOOKUP is an Excel function that can find the value of a specific column in a data-set that matches a key. The function looks like this: =VLOOKUP(KEY,DATA-SET,COLUMN,FALSE) Just remember that it’s always false.
  7. 7. Using VLOOKUP What is VLOOKUP I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that the equation is: =VLOOKUP(KEY,DATA-SET,COLUMN,FALSE) The Key is obviously “widgets”. The key always has to be in the left-most column of the table, and the table that you’ve looking for has to be sorted alphabetically. So our equation now looks like this: =VLOOKUP(“widgets”,DATA-SET,COLUMN,FALSE)
  8. 8. Using VLOOKUP What is VLOOKUP I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that the equation is: =VLOOKUP(KEY,DATA-SET,COLUMN,FALSE) A data-set can either be a table (Excel usually numbers tables, so Table1, Table2) or a block of cells. To outline a block, we put the top left cell first, followed by a colon and then the bottom right cell. Since we want all of the values from “widget corp” in the top left (A2) to “32” in the bottom right (D7), our formula will be =VLOOKUP(“widgets”,A2:D7,COLUMN,FALSE)
  9. 9. Using VLOOKUP What is VLOOKUP I want to find the Avg. Position of “widgets” in this table. Remember that the equation is: =VLOOKUP(KEY,DATA-SET,COLUMN,FALSE) The function will find the row that the key is in, but what column do we return? The column is actually the column index number, which just means if it’s the 4th column from the left then you put “4” in column. =VLOOKUP(“widgets”,A2:D7,4,FALSE)
  10. 10. Using VLOOKUP What is VLOOKUP This equation on the sheet below will return the result “2.1” =VLOOKUP(“widgets”,A2:D7,4,FALSE) The point of this is to be able to have a dynamic key and fill it down, as you might want to use it in, say, the table below.
  11. 11. Using VLOOKUP Tricks Locking Formulas: Always lock ($) the data set when you’re filling down. If I have the simple formula of =A1 (which returns whatever value is in A1) and then fill it down, the equation will automatically change to =A2 in the second row and =A3 in the third row, etc. If I want to make sure it always returns the value in A1, the equation needs to be =A$1 Addressing Other Sheets: If I’m working in Sheet 1 and I want to use the value of A1 in Sheet 2, I can’t just use the equation =A1. That’ll return Sheet 1’s A1. Instead I have to use the name of the sheet in the equation, like this: =‘Sheet 2’!A1
  12. 12. Using VLOOKUP Problem: Fill It Down This is our data set, which is in ‘Sheet 1’ We want to use our “widgets” equation but fill it down to address two other keywords. How would you change the equation so that you could fill it down in D2? Remember our old equation: =VLOOKUP(“widgets”,A2:D7,4,FALSE)
  13. 13. Using VLOOKUP Problem: Fill It Down The answer is: =VLOOKUP(A2,’Sheet 1’!A$2:D$7,4,FALSE) We only changed two things. One, instead of putting “widgets” in as the key, we let Excel fill the value in dynamically. We also added the sheet reference and locked ($) the rows in the data set. When we fill our equation down, the key will change but the data set that we defined in the formula doesn’t. If you look at the formula in D3 it’ll be: =VLOOKUP(A3,’Sheet 1’!A$2:D$7,4,FALSE)
  14. 14. VLOOKUP Case Study Rank Tracking with GWT
  15. 15. Questions?
  16. 16. Proper Table Use
  17. 17. Proper Table Use Hierarchy Issues Normally we think of information hierarchy as flat but defined by tags, e.g. • H1 • Data • H2 • Data In Tables of Content we might see it as: • H1 • H2 Which tricks us into making funky table hybrids that only Jemar can love:
  18. 18. Proper Table Use Hierarchy Issues Tables like that lose out on all of Excel’s functionality. They also miss the point of Excel’s two dimensional data. Every cell is a value of its header and is contextual to its row. Let’s take the corrected table as an example. Cell A2 contains the value “Website 2.” Based on our rule above, it is a value of its header. So, it’s a Website Name. It’s contextual to its row, which means that B2 (a Title Tag) is related, as is C2 (a Meta Description).
  19. 19. Proper Table Use Disparate Tables We also tend to think of tables as answers to one specific question. Here I’m finding organic search traffic for some financial keywords: And here I’m associating keywords to personas: They answer different questions, so I’ve created different tables.
  20. 20. Proper Table Use Disparate Tables But now the client wants to know how much organic traffic each persona has. Unfortunately with the two separate tables I can’t really get that data unless I use a complicated equation and make a third (even more disparate) table.
  21. 21. Proper Table Use Disparate Tables Going back to our original rule, Every cell is a value of its header and is contextual to its row. It’s easy to see that these tables are all contextual. Let’s just make one big table. Using this data I can get all sorts of information. How many (count) keywords are associated with each persona? Or how much organic traffic does each persona have?
  22. 22. Table Use Case Study On-Page SEO Document
  23. 23. Questions?
  24. 24. VLOOKUP Case Study Mapping Emails to Domains
  25. 25. Fun With Pivot Tables
  26. 26. Fun With Pivot Tables Pivot Table Fields Let’s find a couple of ways to visualize this data set:
  27. 27. Fun With Pivot Tables Pivot Table Fields The Field List just includes the column headings, which we can use in our reports. The Report Filter lets us only show a subset of the data that we’d otherwise see. Most of the time I just use Row Label so I can get a simple report like this: Values are what really “pivot.” I’ve got Sum of Search Traffic set now. If I change Location to Keyword the Search Traffic will “pivot” by keyword instead of country.
  28. 28. Fun With Pivot Tables Pivot Table Fields While you’d Filter to see only one or a subset of data for specific Months, you can also set the Month as a Column to see every month side-by-side.
  29. 29. Fun With Pivot Tables Pivot Table Fields You can also nest rows and columns to make them foldable. For example, I want to see search traffic for every keyword by country over February and march. When stacking rows, the... parent should be on top.
  30. 30. Fun With Pivot Tables Value Types The basic value types (SUM which adds everything, COUNT which counts the number of rows, AVERAGE which... averages everything) are obvious. So let me just add one value type to your repertoire:
  31. 31. Pivot Table Case Study Keyword Position Change
  32. 32. Questions?
  33. 33. VLOOKUP Case Study Number of Links to Target Pages
  34. 34. Questions?
  35. 35. A Big Thanks to Alex Rascanu and #InboundTO Stay in Touch Twitter: @troyfawkes Google+: google.com/+TroyBoileau Email: troy@poweredbysearch.com www.poweredbysearch.com www.troyfawkes.com
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