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Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Online Content Publishers

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Online Content Publishers

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Kurt Krejny and Phil Van Treuren talk about creating a strong SEO foundation and implementing search engine optimization techniques on news-based websites. …

Kurt Krejny and Phil Van Treuren talk about creating a strong SEO foundation and implementing search engine optimization techniques on news-based websites.

The Society of Professional Journalists
Region 4 Spring Conference
April 10, 2010

More in: Technology
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  • 1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Online Content Publishers - Creating a Strong SEO Foundation - Search Engine Optimization Techniques The Society of Professional Journalists Region 4 Spring Conference: Rise Up in Cleveland April 10, 2010
  • 2.
    • Kurt Krejny
    • Director of SEM Best Practices
    • Phil Van Treuren
    • Senior Account Executive
    • About Fathom SEO
    • Search Engine Optimization, Online PR & Link Building,
    • Pay-Per-Click Management, Opt-in E-mail Marketing,
    • Display Advertising, Internet Video Marketing, Website Design
    • Experienced Team
    • Senior Account Executives, SEM Specialists, SEM Copywriters,
    • Video Production Specialists, Web Designers & Developers
    Introduction
  • 3.
    • Scent of Information
    • Search Behavior
    • Components of SEO
    • Website Goals
    • Website Publishing Tips
    Creating a Strong SEO Foundation
  • 4.
    • A web page consists of graphical and text elements that aid navigation (where can I go?) , orientation (where am I?) and deliver valuable content (should I click on this link?) .
    • These words and images are the scent of information
    • Understand how and why people are searching
    • Learn searcher experience , goals and behaviors
    • Develop unique, authoritative and timely content
    • Utilize relevant keywords that will display in search listings
    • Improve qualified traffic to support your website goals
    The Scent of Information
  • 5. The Scent of Information
  • 6. The Scent of Information
  • 7.
    • Navigational Searches (Where Can I Go?)
    • The searcher’s goal is to go directly to a site homepage or specific page
    • Highly actionable visitor
    • Approximately 10-26% of web search queries
    • Indicators: brand name, domain suffixes (.com, .org), part of URL
    Search Behavior
  • 8.
    • Informational Searches (What Can I Learn?)
    • The searcher’s goal is to obtain info about a general or specific topic
    • Approximately 48-80% of web search queries
    • Indicators: longer keyword phrases, question-based keywords, plural form for lists
    Search Behavior
  • 9.
    • Transactional Searches (What Can I Do?)
    • The searcher’s goal is to perform an activity beyond just reading
    • Critical point in the buying process
    • Approximately 10-24% of web search queries
    • Indicators: buy, find, download, join, register, apply, hire, contact
    Search Behavior
  • 10. Components of SEO On-Site Off-Site Technical Management GET CONVERT MEASURE
  • 11. Components of SEO (On-site) Look at… URL / Domain Name Visible Text Navigation Site Age Depth of Content “ Meta Data” Page Titles Footers Intra - Linking Keyword Density Search Engines Like..
  • 12. Components of SEO (Off-site) Search Engines Like.. Look at… Blogs Articles / Guides News Releases Inbound Links Videos Social Media More Credible From… Than From… Directories Also Direct Traffic from… Forums Local Search Listings
  • 13. Components of SEO (Technical) Look at… Search Engines Like.. Crawler Friendliness Content Mgt. Systems (CMS) Site Maps Code / HTML Analytics Navigation Can’t See Images Looks at… Duplicate Content Frames Error Pages CSS Validation / Errors No Roadblocks!
  • 14. Components of SEO (Management) Understand Business Goals and Audience Accurate Analytics Keyword Rankings Quality Organic Traffic (relevancy, time on page, time on site, bounce rate, pages per visit) Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) (RSS & E-mail Subscriptions, Social Media Sharing) Conversions (Member Registrations, Clicks on Ads, Article Sales, Freelance Service Inquiries)
  • 15. Website Goals - GET / CONVERT / MEASURE
    • GET
    • Build quality content with relevant categories and keyword themes
    • Monitor strategic keyword rankings
    • Attract and seek out inbound links with online public relations and social media
    • Leverage other marketing channels (print, radio, TV)
    • CONVERT
    • Provide a fast loading and usable website
    • Funnel users with solid calls to action (text and graphics)
    • - Do not ask for more information than you need on forms
    • MEASURE
    • Understand website analytics
    • Determine the value of KPIs and conversions
    • Analyze and adjust
  • 16. Website Publishing Tips – News & Article Websites
    • Domain Name Selection
    • Consider keywords in your domain. Make it easy to remember. .COM, .NET, .ORG
    • Website Hosting
    • Will it accommodate your CMS or custom coding? What is the bandwidth? Reliable Uptime.
    • Content Management System
    • WordPress, Drupal – SEO Friendly
    • Revenue Model
    • Google Adsense, Text Links, Banner Ads, Custom Ad Packages, Sponsorships, Donations
    • Invest in Design
    • Good design & usability can enhance delivery of content. Don’t settle on a permanent design.
    • RSS / Email / Social Media
    • Provide additional channels to deliver your content to encourage repeat visitors.
    • Analytics & Webmaster Tools
    • Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools are free! Consider using Google Website Optimizer to test homepage and article layout and design elements.
  • 17. Website Publishing Tips – Freelance Writers
    • Pick the Right Keywords
    • Optimize for the keywords you want to be found with on search engines.
    • Content Portfolio
    • Include downloadable articles, and links to live articles on the web. Turn scanned images into PDFs. Include a copyright disclaimer to protect your work.
    • Resume Versions
    • Include HTML, PDF, and Word formats. All versions can get picked up in search engines.
    • Is Local Work Important?
    • Include your home address and the cities and zip codes you cover.
    • Blogs are Powerful
    • Blog posts can rank for timely topics and get indexed quickly by search engines.
    • Connect your blog posts to social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn)
    • Contact Mechanisms
    • Allow people to contact you via an easy to find form, email address, and phone number.
    • Social Media
    • Link to your site from your social media profiles. Be mindful of how you represent yourself on these sites if clients can view your posts.
  • 18. Search Engine Optimization Techniques
    • On-Page SEO
    • Targeted Keywords
    • Internal Linking Strategy
    • Timely and Unique Content
    • Domain Age
    • SEO Link Building
  • 19.
    • On-page optimization is the one element of SEO that you as webmaster and writer have the most control over.
    • Your on-page SEO will help the search engines better define what your site and articles are about, and decide where to rank you for specific search terms.
    • On-page SEO best practices differ slightly for news and current events websites as opposed to static product or company sites.
    On-Page Search Engine Optimization
  • 20.
    • How you name your page titles and URLs is one of the most important things you can do for on-site SEO.
    • From a site-wide perspective, having your coverage area in your domain name will help your site rank for that keyword.
    • Likewise, you should always try to include a few keywords that you think your targeted audience will be looking for in your individual page titles.
    • Make sure that your URL structure is SEO FRIENDLY! Let’s take the example of an article entitled “Man Stops Robbery in Cleveland.”
    Page Titles and URLs
  • 21.
    • NOT SEO FRIENDLY:
    • www.news.com/articles/2010/04/07/news/doc4bbcafd2850.txt
  • 22.
    • SEO FRIENDLY:
    • www.news.com/articles/news/man-stops-robbery-in-cleveland
  • 23.
    • As journalists, your first priority should be to write for your readers, NOT for the search engines.
    • Keep in mind, though, that by adding appropriate keywords in your titles and content, you will make the discovery of your articles easier in search engines.
    • Before writing your online article, take a moment to consider what terms web surfers might use to look for similar information in a search engine.
    • Be sure that you include any relevant keywords in your title and content, but not so much that it makes your writing seem keyword-stuffed.
    Using Targeted Keywords in Titles and Content
  • 24.
    • The number of words used on a web page DOES have an effect on its visibility in the search engines.
    • While there is nothing wrong with publishing shorter pages, generally you want to ensure that pages have at least 200 words of content.
    • Flash animations and graphical banners DO NOT count as readable text! Search engines are not able to read text in pictures, and it will not help with keyword rankings.
    • If your homepage is flash-base or image-based, consider adding a text block beneath the images or feeding snippets of your most recent articles onto the page.
    Word Counts & Using Scannable Text
  • 25.
    • Your link structure, or how you link to other pages on your website, helps the search engines determine which pages are important and relevant.
    • Site-wide links, or sidebar and navigation links that are the same on every page of your website, should be limited to more important pages.
    • When you publish a new page or article, try to link to other relevant pages on your site.
    • Additionally, make sure you include a sitemap that allows visitors and search engines easily browse all of the pages on your website, and category pages that include lists of article links.
    Link Structure and Linking to Relevant Pages
  • 26.
    • One of the most effective things you can do to get your site to rank highly in the search engines is to update your homepage with new content on a regular basis.
    • The more often you update your homepage, the more often search engines will crawl your site for fresh info, the higher you will rank.
    • This is especially important for news sites: you want your breaking news articles to get indexed in the search engines RIGHT AWAY!
    • NEVER let the content on your homepage become stale and stagnant. Update with links to new published articles, and snippets from articles to add more text to the homepage.
    Updating Your Homepage Regularly with New Content
  • 27.
    • If you post the same content on your website in more than one place, the search engines may have a hard time determining which is the original.
    • Try not to reproduce large sections of previously posted content in new pages on your site. Instead, limit duplicate content to snippets.
    • Re-publishing content that has already appeared online in another website (AP articles, for example) will not hurt your existing rankings, but you probably won’t rank highly for that article.
    • Remember: search engines LOVE ORIGINAL CONTENT and can tell if you took content from another website!
    Dangers of Duplicate Content
  • 28.
    • The age of a website matters in SEO!
    • Remember: the older your domain and internal pages get, the more authority it will be given in the search engines, and the higher it will rank for relevant keywords.
    • If you have just launched a website, it could take six months to a year before you start seeing a significant amount of search traffic.
    • If you are thinking of starting a blog or website, BUY THE DOMAIN RIGHT AWAY and toss up some content so it starts to age!
    Domain Age and SEO
  • 29.
    • Off-Site Search Engine Optimization primarily consists of building and earning links on other websites that point back to your own.
    • Link Building is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT if you want to build authority for your website and get it to rank highly in the search engines.
    • Links to your website from other sites that have a high link authority themselves are much more valuable than links from low-authority sites.
    • More links: more traffic from search engines!
    Off-Site SEO and Link Building
  • 30.
    • There are many ways to build links to your site, but as a current events site your biggest source of links will be from readers.
    • By writing compelling, interesting content, your readers will naturally link back and refer to your site on their blogs, websites, etcetera.
    • Encourage readers to link back to you: it’s money in the bank!
    • Other link sources include paid links, directories, forums, article marketing
    • Build links GRADUALLY and CONSISTENTLY!
    Encouraging Readers to Link From Their Sites
  • 31.
    • ANCHOR TEXT is what the link back to your site actually “says.” It’s important for getting your site to rank for specific keyword phrases.
    • For instance, if you wanted to help your website rank higher in the search engines for the term “Cleveland News,” then you should make an effort to ensure that links back to your site used the anchor text Cleveland News .
    • Always use descriptive anchor text, including links on your site that point to other pages on your site. NEVER use anchor text like Click Here or other generic, non-descriptive phrases.
    The Importance of Anchor Text
  • 32.
    • Questions?
    • Slides available for download at:
    • http://www.slideshare.net/fathomseo
    • Visit the Fathom SEO Blog at:
    • http://www.fathomseo.com/blog