Competitors were getting hundreds of anchor text links, from lower authority sites (blogrolls)
Biggest Findings 1 authority link from NYT (buried) ≠ 15 anchor text links in blogrolls / homepage sponsors New link strategy was required
New Link Strategy Not about one offs (guest blog posts) Not about authority Unless we can dictate anchor text Unless we can get placement in plain HTML IS about heavy anchor text IS about networks
Your Takeaways DEEP analysis of your competitors (who are ranking above you) is one of the first steps in SEO today.
Your Takeaways – Anchor Text # of links is no longer sufficient Authority links are not always better than ads / sponsorships where you can’t dictate anchor text. Watch anchor text rich links in blog posts (they get archived). Homepage anchor text links to something 4 clicks away = ranking fluctuations
Impact of Threat – Rank Checking Universal search can impact CTRs for your top traffic driving queries Rank Checker Open your historical ranking tracker Don’t look for a BIG ranking drop Look for inclusion of universal search
Impact of Threat – Google Analytics Analytics Alerts At least 2 weeks Traffic and/or conversions declines significantly Google Intelligence Report (Beta) Automatic Notification!!!!!
Webmaster Tools – Identify Impact of Universal View Click through Percentage By Month If your position is similar yet your click through % decreases / increases that is an indication to look deeper into universal search factors impacting your CTR. Note: I have seen Google be way off in the ranking report, but it appears to be getting better.