SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and SEM (Search Engine Marketing) - Seminar on Web Search

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Seminar talk about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

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SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and SEM (Search Engine Marketing) - Seminar on Web Search

  1. 1. Seminar on Web SearchSearch Engine Optimisation (SEO) and SearchEngine Marketing (SEM)Prof. Beat SignerDepartment of Computer ScienceVrije Universiteit Brusselhttp://www.beatsigner.com 2 December 2005
  2. 2. Search Engine Result Pages (SERP)September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 2
  3. 3. Search Engine Result Pages (SERP) ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 3
  4. 4. Vertical Search Result PagesSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 4
  5. 5. Search Engine Result Page  There is a variety of information shown on a search engine result page (SERP)  organic search results  non-organic search results  meta-information about the result (e.g. number of result pages)  vertical navigation  advanced search options  query refinement suggestions  ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 5
  6. 6. Search Engine Marketing (SEM)  For many companies Internet marketing has become a big business  Search engine marketing (SEM) aims to increase the visibility of a website  search engine optimisation (SEO)  paid search advertising (non-organic search)  social media marketing  SEO should not be decoupled from a websites content, structure, design and used technologies  SEO has to be seen as an continuous process in a rapidly changing environment  different search engines with regular changes in rankingSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 6
  7. 7. Structural Choices  Keep the website structure as flat a possible  minimise link depth  avoid pages with much more than 100 links  Think about your websites internal link structure  which pages are directly linked from the homepage?  create many internal links for important pages  be "careful" about where to put outgoing links - PageRank leakage  use keyword-rich anchor texts  dynamically create links between related content - e.g. "customer who bought this also bought ..." or "visitors who viewed this also viewed ..."  Increase the number of pagesSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 7
  8. 8. Technological Choices  Check whether a potential content management system (CMS) is SEO friendly  Dynamic URLs vs. static URLs  avoid session IDs and parameters in URL  use URL rewriting to get descriptive URLs containing keywords  Think carefully about the use of dynamic content and links  e.g. use of JavaScript or Flash  Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) based on AJAX etc.  content hidden behind pull-down menus etc.  Address webpages consistently  http://www.vub.ac.be  http://www.vub.ac.be/index.phpSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 8
  9. 9. Consistent Addressing of WebpagesSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 9
  10. 10. Search Engine Optimisations  Different things can be optimised  on-page factors  off-page factors  It is assumed that some search engines use more than 200 on-page and off-page factors for their ranking  Difference between optimisation and breaking the "search engine rules"  white hat and black hat optimisations  A bad ranking or removal from index can cost a company a lot of money or even mark the end of the company  e.g. supplemental index ("Google hell")September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 10
  11. 11. Positive On-Page Factors  Use of keywords at relevant places  in title tag (preferably one of the first words)  in URL  in domain name  in header tags (e.g. <h1>)  multiple times in body text  Provide metadata  e.g. <meta name="description"> also used by search engines to create the text snippets on the SERPs  Quality of HTML code  Uniqueness of content across the website  Page freshness (occasional changes)September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 11
  12. 12. Negative On-Page Factors  Links to "bad neighbourhood"  Link selling  in 2007 Google announced a campaign against paid links that transfer PageRank  Over optimisation penalty (keyword stuffing)  Text with same colour as background (hidden content)  Automatic redirect via the refresh meta tag  Cloaking  different pages for spider and user  Malware being hosted on the pageSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 12
  13. 13. Negative On-Page Factors ...  Duplicate or similar content  Duplicate page titles or meta tags  Slow page load time  Any copyright violations  ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 13
  14. 14. Positive Off-Page Factors  Links from pages with a high PageRank  Keywords in anchor text of inbound links  Links from topically relevant sites  High clickthrough rate (CTR) from search engine for a given keyword  Listed in DMOZ / Open Directory Project (ODP) and Yahoo directories  High number of shares on social networks  e.g. Facebook, Google +1 or TwitterSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 14
  15. 15. Positive Off-Page Factors ...  Site age (stability)  Google sandbox?  Domain expiration date  High PageRank  ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 15
  16. 16. Negative Off-Page Factors  Site often not accessible to crawlers  e.g. server problem  High bounce rate  users immediately press the back button  Link buying  rapidly increasing number of inbound links  Use of link farms  Participation in link sharing programmes  Links from bad neighbourhood?  Competitor attack (e.g. via duplicate content)?September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 16
  17. 17. Black Hat Optimisations (Donts)  Link farms  Spamdexing in guestbooks, Wikipedia etc.  "solution": <a rel="nofollow" href="...">...</a>  Keyword Stuffing  overuse of keywords - content keyword stuffing - image keyword stuffing - kewords in meta tags - invisible text with keywords  Selling/buying links  "big" business until 2007  costs based on the PageRank of the linking siteSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 17
  18. 18. Black Hat Optimisations (Donts) ...  Doorway pages (cloaking)  doorway pages are normally just designed for search engines - user is automatically redirected to the target page  e.g. BMW Germany and Ricoh Germany banned in February 2006September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 18
  19. 19. Nofollow Link Example  Nofollow value for hyperlinks introduced by Google in 2005 to avoid spamdexing  <a rel="nofollow" href="...">...</a>  Links with a nofollow value were not counted in the PageRank computation  division by number of outgoing links  e.g. page with 9 outgoing links and 3 of them are nofollow links - PageRank divided by 6 and distributed across the 6 "really linked pages"  SEO experts started to use (misuse) the nofollow links for PageRank sculpting  control flow of PageRank within a websiteSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 19
  20. 20. Nofollow Link Example ...  In June 2009 Google decided to treat nofollow links differently to avoid PageRank sculpting  division by total number of outgoing links  e.g. page with 9 outgoing links and 3 of them are nofollow links - PageRank divided by 9 and distributed across the 6 "really linked pages"  no longer a good solution to prevent Spamdexing since we loose (diffuse) some PageRank  SEO experts start to use alternative techniques to replace nofollow links  e.g. obfuscated JavaScript linksSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 20
  21. 21. Where to Get SEO Information  Guidelines from search engine providers  e.g. Google webmaster guidelines  Various SEO websites  http://www.seobook.com/  http://www.seomoz.org/  Blogs  Matt Cutts (GoogleGuy) http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/  ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 21
  22. 22. Webpage Validation  Browsers forgive errors in HTML documents  weakens the standard  HTML pages can be checked against standard  http://validator.w3.org/  Less HTML errors  easier parsing for search engines  might also be a ranking factor for search engines  faster renderingSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 22
  23. 23. Google Webmaster Tools  Various services and infor- mation about a website  Site configuration  submission of sitemap  crawler access  URLs of indexed pages  settings - e.g. preferred domain  Your site on the web  search queries  keywords  internal and external linksSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 23
  24. 24. Google Webmaster Tools ...  Diagnostics  crawl rates and errors  HTML suggestions  Use HTML suggestions for on-page factor optimisation  meta description - duplicate meta descriptions - too long meta descriptions  title tag - missing or duplicate title tags - too long or too short title tags  non-indexable content  Similar tools offered by other search engines  e.g. Bing Webmaster ToolsSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 24
  25. 25. XML Sitemaps <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <urlset xmlns="http://www.example.com/sitemap/0.9"> <url> <loc>http://www.tenera.ch/zyliss-trommelreibe.html</loc> <lastmod>2011-07-06</lastmod> <changefreq>weekly</changefreq> <priority>0.4</priority> </url> <url> <loc>http://www.tenera.ch/tenera-universalmesser.html</loc> <lastmod>2010-12-05</lastmod> <changefreq>weekly</changefreq> <priority>0.1</priority> </url> ... </urlset>  List of URLs that should be crawled and indexedSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 25
  26. 26. XML Sitemaps ...  All major search engines support the sitemap format  The URLs of sitemap are not guaranteed to be added to a search engines index  helps search engine to find pages that are not yet indexed  Additional metadata might be provided to search engines  relative page relevance (priority)  date of last modififaction (lastmod)  update frequency (changefreq)September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 26
  27. 27. Web Analysis Tools  Logfile analysis tools  Google Analytics  easy to "install" over the Web  website admin has to add a piece of JavaScript code to the website  Google gets information about site visitors  a user can normally choose to use a free service (e.g. Gmail) but has no choice when it comes to being tracked via Google AnalyticsSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 27
  28. 28. Product Search  Various shopping and price comparison sites import product data  some of them are free, for others one has to pay  Google Product Search  started as Froogle, became Google Products and now Google Product Search  product data uploaded to Google Base  very effective vertical searchSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 28
  29. 29. Social Networks and Bookmarking  Social networks offer another great opportunity to attract new visitors  "word of mouth"  inlinks do often not count  Offer visitors the possi- bility to easily bookmark and share a website on social networks  use sharing services such as AddThis - http://www.addthis.com/September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 29
  30. 30. Non-Organic Search  In addition to the so-called organic search, websites can also participate in non-organic web search  cost per impression (CPI)  cost- per-click (CPC)  The non-organic web search should be treated independently from the organic web search  Quality of the landing page can have an impact on the non-organic web search performance!  The Google AdWords programme is an example of a commercial non-organic web search service  other services include Yahoo! Advertising Solutions, Facebook Ads, ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 30
  31. 31. Google AdWords  pay-per-click (PPC) or cost-per-thousand (CPM)  Campains and ad groups  Two types of advertising  search  content network - Google Adsense  Highly customisable ads  region  language  daytime  ...September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 31
  32. 32. Google AdWords ...  Excellent control and monitoring for AdWords users  cost per conversion  In 2010 Googles total advertising revenues were 28 billion USDSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 32
  33. 33. Conclusions  SEO is a continous and lengthy process that should be synchronised with decisions about a websites content, structure, design and used technologies  Optimisation of on-page and off-page factors leads to increased ranking and visibility  Non-organic search as a paid alternative to increase the visibility  profits from SEO since the landing pages will be of higher quality  Many opportunities and free services  e.g. Google Product Search  Social marketing and social search is rapidly growing!September 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 33
  34. 34. References  Google Webmaster Tools  http://www.google.com/webmasters/  The W3C Markup Validation Service  http://validator.w3.org/  Matt Cutts  http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/  SEO Book  http://www.seobook.com  SEOmoz  http://www.seomoz.orgSeptember 9, 2011 Beat Signer - Department of Computer Science - bsigner@vub.ac.be 34
  35. 35. Next LectureCurrent and Future Trends in Web Search 2 December 2005

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