The Art & Scienceof Organic SearchMonica Wright@monicawrightDirector of CommunityMarketing Land & Search Engine Land
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
The Knowledge Graph@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
Authorship &Authority
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
20 Billion Searches(March 2013)No more excuses.@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
Monica you!
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League
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The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League


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A Pecha Kucha presentation shared at The Broadway League's annual Roadshow Conference on May 17, 2013 explaining the art and science of SEO, dissecting and applying the Periodic Table of SEO as elements of a theater production. See #srconf2013 and @thebwayleague for more coverage of the event.

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  • Hello my name is Monica Wright, I am the Director of Community for Marketing Land and Search Engine Land, both news and information sites covering search marketing and the digital marketing industry includng social media, mobile marketing, analytics and more. We also put on the SMX conference series worldwide, with one of our flagship events happening here in New York in the fall.
  • I thought I’d break the ice out sharing this really awful self-portrait of me from 1993 – it was part of an installation when I was an art student in Boston, it’s possible that this is the most people who has ever seen this atrocity. And in case you were wondering, that’s toothpaste – not paint, or clay, or anything else.
  • Which brings me to today. This is the periodic table of SEO, Search Engine Land developed this as a tool for marketers in 2011, especially ones who are just getting started in understanding search. Has anyone seen this before?If you haven’t seen this before, it seems pretty daunting doesn’t it?Search Engine Land is in the process of developing an updated version which will be released in June.
  • As you can imagine, the Sheldon Coopers of search think this is the best thing since Old Spock met new Spock in the Star Trek movie (which technically came out after the Periodic table of SEO but nobody really is keeping track, right?)
  • But there is also creativity that is spurred by curiosity that many good SEOs have. The SEO elements are best practices, and you’ll start seeing a lot of it common sense if you put your audience first.WHICH IS WHAT ARTISTS DO – APPEAL TO THE AUDIENCE.Well-optimized sites do the same thing. And not only do they attract the viewer, they ATTRACT GOOGLE.So let’s look at these elements by putting the audience first.
  • Let’s start with a stage. You cannot put on any kind of performance or expect anyone to see you without a good location. So if we think about a website foundation as a stage this would be:- your URL- making sure your site is discovered LCOALLY (include your address, phone number, etc.)- Your site speed- Using site maps to help search engines index important pages- Your robots.txt files- Response headers (nobody likes to go to a 404 page)- If your site is well-optimized for mobile
  • Next is set design.Set design gives the audience a sense of place, just as your site design and navigation provides a sense of place to a user. Don’t make it hard for users to find what they want.Good URL structure helps users (and Google!) in navigation. Google is in the business of answering questions – you know your audience best, get those questions answered in a logical format.
  • On stage you want great performers and a really good script. Your cast is your content on stage. You want quality, fresh content, you want the audience to be engaged. This is where your reputation and authority as producers come into play. You want good reviews, great photos and video, content that will be easily shared by users, and found by Google (yes Google prefers video.)
  • Now it’s time for the show to hit the road. Your crew is what makes this happen.Marketing, outreach, ticket sales, social media, lights, effects, backstage, front of the house, making sure everything WORKS, consistently on time and on budget. You’ll see many of the elements overlapping here – keeping your site quality up, maintaining reputation with good reviews, how long the show has been in production…Broadway Across America Facebook pageThe BroadWay League Facebook Page
  • Congratulations, we’ve applied art to some of the science of SEO and voila, we covered the basics. But we aren’t done yet, as I mentioned earlier – we are updating this table, and there are a few other elements that aren’t listed that are worth mentioning, so I’ll just give you some live examples.
  • GOOGLE IS ALWAYS TRYING TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS.They do this with suggested results (as you can see.) Also with the Knowledge Graph, Google can understand the difference, helping you more precisely express what you mean as you enter your search. Knowledge graph for brands is done by having a branded Google+ page (and if you are a local business, such as a theater, Google+ isintegratingwith local search as well.)For an established brand like Beauty and the Beast, Google will pull fromother sources, but youcansee the brandedresultpotential.
  • There is another element coming into play called authorship. Peoplewith a Google+ profile that has authorship set up on their site will show up like this. This seems to be an ongoing topic with many publishers, simply because having an icon positively increases clickthrough rates, even more so than having a video result (in some cases.)
  • So at this point, what are your excuses not to think as search as an important piece of marketing your business? It’s not in the budget.We just built our site.It’s someone else’s job.There are better things to do right now.It’s not a priority.It can’t be measured.Who’s responsibility is it anyway?We’ll do it next year.
  • Search is important. So no more excuses!ComScore’s latest report estimates that there were over 20 billion searches during March — that’s desktop-only, thereforedoesn’t include mobile.So no more excuses!I’m going to give you some tips on how to get started, or at least, how to talk to someone about getting your search efforts on track.
  • Your website may look mahvelous, but it may not feel mahvelous. You can’t fix what you don’t know is broken. Do a site audit and competitive analysis before any other work gets done. It’s the best starting point, and provides the road map on what to focus on in the short term and long term. If it’s better search traffic you are looking for, you need an evaluation that involves a technical analysis, content review, an inbound link analysis and a usability assessment. Before work starts, BENCHMARK.Before the work starts, have your agency capture benchmarks and make annotations of work completed or any site changes within Google Analytics. Take screenshots of your search results and of your pages. If you’re not sure what to benchmark, make a list and ask.
  • Which leads to this – Band-Aids don’t work.If your site isn’t operating well overall, SEO isn’t going to help. (On the other hand, you also don’t want to break something that is working – see the previous point about starting with an audit.) No matter what, good information architecture and design matters. SEO is not a feature that can be applied after a site is created, nor will a Band-Aid approach to fixing a site design deliver the results you would expect.
  • Pay attention to your competitors, then let it go.As part of the assessment process, it’s OK to see how competitors rank, or how they are optimizing and promoting their sites. But just because your competitors are doing something doesn’t mean that they are doing it right, or doing it the way that will work for you. Take some notes, capture the benchmark, then let it go. Allow your SEO consultant or agency to track your progress against competitors.Your job is to keep your eye on the outcome, so don’t get distracted by what the other guys are doing.
  • Diversify your traffic.I really can’t say this enough – from a search perspective, it’s fantastic to see search traffic grow and convert, but it also can be extremely risky. If you don’t diversify traffic sources, there could be trouble down the road. You may have awesome search numbers while your referral traffic is in the toilet. Understand attribution. Get the best sense of where your business is coming from.
  • Don’t be held hostage by what you don’t understand.Don’t just collaborate, learn. If you don’t understand terminology or where numbers are coming from, ask. If you feel like it’s over your head, say so. A good consultant will stop and make the time to explain things. I am not advocating for micromanaging your campaigns, but you should hold your agency accountable to empower you. If a search marketer can’t explain it in a way you understand, that’s a big red flag.
  • Thanks to Bruce Granath, Victor Hamburger and the Broadway League for inviting me today, I look forward to a fantastic event!
  • The Art & Science of SEO - Pecha Kucha Presentation for the Broadway League

    1. 1. The Art & Scienceof Organic SearchMonica Wright@monicawrightDirector of CommunityMarketing Land & Search Engine Land
    2. 2. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    3. 3. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    4. 4. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    5. 5. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    6. 6.
    7. 7. The Knowledge Graph@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    8. 8. Authorship &Authority
    9. 9. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    10. 10. 20 Billion Searches(March 2013)No more excuses.@marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    11. 11. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    12. 12. @marketingland / @sengineland / @monicawright
    13. 13. Monica you!