Improving Findability in Magazine Sites
MagsU Masterclass: SEO Toolkit




Shannon Emmerson
Canada Wide Media Limited
Contents



Defining Findability
About Canada Wide Media Limited
Successes & lessons in findability
 Strategy & Organizati...
Defining Findability




         “The fundamental goal of findability is to
         persistently connect your audience w...
Defining Findability




                                     Accessibility   Usability




                              ...
About Canada Wide Media



Largest independently
owned magazine
publisher in Western
Canada
30 year history
Diverse range ...
About Canada Wide Media


Largely print-based
publishing until 2007
6 million readers ...
and growing
About Canada Wide Media


Launched digital media
division in Jan 2007
Digital team now manages
and maintains seven sites,
...
About Canada Wide Media
Starting Out in Digital
          Initial Strategy

      1. Extend brands into digital environmen...
About Canada Wide Media
Starting Out in Digital
          Initial Site Goals

      1. Give advertisers a desirable online...
About Canada Wide Media
Starting Out in Digital
          If you build it ...
About Canada Wide Media
Year One
About Canada Wide Media
Year Two
About Canada Wide Media
This Year
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization


Consider findability
from the start: hiring,
training, planning...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization

         Know Your Site Goals

        Business and strategic go...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization

        Goals: YouThink.ca

        Increase return visits, time...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization

        Goals: YouThink.ca Audience
        Know Your Target

  ...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
        Goals: YouThink.cafor the Goal
        Use the Right Tool...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization

         BCBusiness & Twitter
Success & Lessons in Findability
Strategy & Organization
Success & Lessons in Findability
Design & Development

        Prepare to Iterate
Success & Lessons in Findability
Design & Development

        Findability Must Inform Design
Success & Lessons in Findability
Design & Development

         Search Engines Adore...

        Real content - no search ...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Design & Development

        Your CMS can Help

        Open Source can support you: the...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Content

          Guess, Analyze, Improve

          Editor’s job: Provide content reade...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Content

          More IS Better

More content=more chances of
being found=more time on ...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Content

      Keywords, Metatags,
                  and more Keywords

          Title t...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Content

      Keywords, Metatags,
                  and more Keywords

          Meta ke...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Content
          Example
Success & Lessons in Findability
Bonus Lesson!

         Hire Rock Stars

You need people who are
comfortable with chaos &...
Success & Lessons in Findability
Marketing & Measurement

        Email is Not Dead
Success & Lessons in Findability
Marketing & Measurement

        Connect & Communicate

Love those inbound links
Know you...
Takeaways



Prioritize. You can’t do everything.
Encourage all roles to embrace findability.
Choose & care for your CMS w...
Questions
semmerson@canadawide.com / @semmerson (twitter)


         Can I get these slides?

                     What ar...
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Findability Seo Toolkit

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Presentation delivered at MagsUniversity 2009 in Toronto on findability and SEO.

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Findability Seo Toolkit

  1. 1. Improving Findability in Magazine Sites MagsU Masterclass: SEO Toolkit Shannon Emmerson Canada Wide Media Limited
  2. 2. Contents Defining Findability About Canada Wide Media Limited Successes & lessons in findability Strategy & Organization Design & Development Content Marketing & Measurement Takeaways Questions/Discussion
  3. 3. Defining Findability “The fundamental goal of findability is to persistently connect your audience with the stuff you write, design, and build.” -Aarron Walter, Author, Building Findable Websites
  4. 4. Defining Findability Accessibility Usability Information SEO Architecture Findability Design Development Development Marketing -Aarron Walter, Author, Building Findable Websites
  5. 5. About Canada Wide Media Largest independently owned magazine publisher in Western Canada 30 year history Diverse range of media products and services 50+ titles including self-owned and custom
  6. 6. About Canada Wide Media Largely print-based publishing until 2007 6 million readers ... and growing
  7. 7. About Canada Wide Media Launched digital media division in Jan 2007 Digital team now manages and maintains seven sites, ten enewsletters With ten employees, we are a full-service design and development house, and manage all ad sales, editorial, marketing and measurement
  8. 8. About Canada Wide Media Starting Out in Digital Initial Strategy 1. Extend brands into digital environment 2. Contract out consulting, design and development for initial sites 3. Concurrently build and/or develop in-house teams
  9. 9. About Canada Wide Media Starting Out in Digital Initial Site Goals 1. Give advertisers a desirable online platform 2. Make the most of existing content & make it findable online 3. Create sites that honour their respective brands 4. Grow communities 5. Evaluate and improve
  10. 10. About Canada Wide Media Starting Out in Digital If you build it ...
  11. 11. About Canada Wide Media Year One
  12. 12. About Canada Wide Media Year Two
  13. 13. About Canada Wide Media This Year
  14. 14. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization Consider findability from the start: hiring, training, planning, strategy ‘Build it and they will come” only works if you build it SO they will come
  15. 15. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization Know Your Site Goals Business and strategic goals must inform your findability/search strategy Discuss and agree on what you want people to find Identify tactics, assign resources Document and communicate Measure Adjust
  16. 16. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization Goals: YouThink.ca Increase return visits, time spent on site Convert readers to eNewsletter subscribers Improve interaction: quizzes, polls, surveys, comments Remind readers about the print mag Increase content submissions, enable readers to contact and find our team Increase traffic
  17. 17. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  18. 18. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  19. 19. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  20. 20. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  21. 21. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization Goals: YouThink.ca Audience Know Your Target Who do you want to find you? Knowledge of your audience informs your search/findability strategy Different, wider audiences accessible online Target digital content accordingly Observe, test and survey
  22. 22. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  23. 23. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization Goals: YouThink.cafor the Goal Use the Right Tool Advertisers shifting from raw traffic to engagement (CPM to CPA) Consider social media tools as a part of your search strategy: ‘flip the funnel’
  24. 24. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization BCBusiness & Twitter
  25. 25. Success & Lessons in Findability Strategy & Organization
  26. 26. Success & Lessons in Findability Design & Development Prepare to Iterate
  27. 27. Success & Lessons in Findability Design & Development Findability Must Inform Design
  28. 28. Success & Lessons in Findability Design & Development Search Engines Adore... Real content - no search tricks Hierarchies and web standards Established domains Easy to understand URLs with keywords Keyword-rich content (but not gamed) Indexability (spiders need room to move) Quick load times Inbound links from decent sources
  29. 29. Success & Lessons in Findability Design & Development Your CMS can Help Open Source can support you: there’s someone out there working on it... Active open source communities provide fresh updates SEO is a hot topic: guides, SEO-specific upgrades, blogs are all out there
  30. 30. Success & Lessons in Findability Content Guess, Analyze, Improve Editor’s job: Provide content readers will like If you don’t know, guess See if you’re right online; get editors acquainted with analytics tools Check what most popular, least popular, most commented, most entered, most existed, etc. Ask and answer WHY Answers direct placement of effort in creation, placement, production, promotion ...
  31. 31. Success & Lessons in Findability Content More IS Better More content=more chances of being found=more time on site Good, varied content is the best content Short works well Blogs are brilliant: time on site, interaction, speed, freshness Start collecting packages
  32. 32. Success & Lessons in Findability Content Keywords, Metatags, and more Keywords Title tags, meta description, meta keywords, and URL -- in that order Title tags: your calling card; rename them if you can and make ‘em keyword-rich; truncated at 70 characters Meta Descriptions: unique for each page including targeted keywords (search engines pull snippets); truncated at 150 words Tip: Make it interesting: it may wind up on Google’s search results page!
  33. 33. Success & Lessons in Findability Content Keywords, Metatags, and more Keywords Meta keywords: relevant themes Trick: use Google Adwords, SEOBook.com, Wordtracker or similar tool to find out what keywords are dense on your page, along with related words and phrases. URL: no query strings; include keywords where possible
  34. 34. Success & Lessons in Findability Content Example
  35. 35. Success & Lessons in Findability Bonus Lesson! Hire Rock Stars You need people who are comfortable with chaos & constant change. Varied backgrounds help. Anthropologists. Storytellers. Experimenters. Hurdlers.
  36. 36. Success & Lessons in Findability Marketing & Measurement Email is Not Dead
  37. 37. Success & Lessons in Findability Marketing & Measurement Connect & Communicate Love those inbound links Know your communities and go for a visit Reply: have actual conversations! Develop good relationships
  38. 38. Takeaways Prioritize. You can’t do everything. Encourage all roles to embrace findability. Choose & care for your CMS wisely. Design and develop for findability, not just aesthetics. Do keyword research. Lots of it. Create new content with findability in mind. Think multiplatform, think content collections. Experiment. Learn. Enjoy.
  39. 39. Questions semmerson@canadawide.com / @semmerson (twitter) Can I get these slides? What are those little things on the end of shoelaces called? What’s your sign? Can’t we all just get along? What is the secret to the universe? Don’t you just love Flight of the Conchords?
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