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10 steps to effective seo & great ranking's


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  • 1. 10 Steps to Effective SEO & Great RankingsA checklist web marketers can use to build a foundation in strong, white-hat SEO and inbound marketing. Rand Fishkin, SEOmoz CEO, March 2011
  • 2. SEOmoz Makes Software! We don’t offer consulting.
  • 3. Why is SEO so Important?
  • 4. In Feb. 2011, Google said they had 2 Billion+ searches/day! Global Search Volume GrowthMillions of Searches (Monthly) http:/ Data via Comscore Qsearch:
  • 5. Search Engine Market Share Most of the World (except China, Russia, Korea + Czech Republic) look like this y_2011_U.S._Search_Engine_Rankings http:/
  • 6. Organic vs. Paid SearchPaidOrganic http:/
  • 7. Organic vs. Paid Search~20% of Clicks~80% of Clicks http:/
  • 8. Click-Through Rates Ranking #2, #3 and #4 would send less traffic than just ranking #1 http:/
  • 9. How Can My Website Compete?
  • 10. Step 1: Good Isn’t Good Enough; Make Your Content Great.
  • 11. “Good” Content vs. “GREAT” ContentSatisfies the searcher’s basic Surprises and delights the information requirements searcher by being remarkableWritten by a human and not Produced by extraordinary duplicated elsewhere writers/designers/producers Long enough to fulfill basic May leverage video, audio, needs of engines for graphics & photos to convey a depth/uniqueness unique, shareable experienceGrammatically correct; free of Produced by extraordinary spelling/punctuation errors writers/designers/producers
  • 12. OK Cupid Dating Blog http:/
  • 13. Hotel Reviews http:/
  • 14. Unbounce Marketing Guide http:/
  • 15. Searchers LOVE Great Content & People SHARE Great Content http:/
  • 16. A Blog Alone Doesn’t Cut It. http:/
  • 17. You Must Become a Hub for Great Answers on Q+A Content in Your Niche Referenced sites reference by industry its resources Site that offers: blogs • Unique ResearchForum discussions Mentioned in • Informed Opinions link to its pages news • News/Trend Analysis publications • Multimedia ContentLinks are Tweeted People email • Authentic Expert Contributors links to each • Quality Discussion/Interaction otherLiked/Sharedon Facebook Cited at conferences + events Sometimes, a single piece of content or just a few, can yield these results but, more http:/ often, it takes dozens to hundreds of attempts to become a resource hub.
  • 18. Step 2: Make that Great ContentAccessible to Search Engines.
  • 19. Substantive, Descriptive, HTML Text Content is a great site, but there’s no real text content for engines to see! http:/ doesn’t have a ton more, but there’s at least something for Google/Bing to grab onto.
  • 20. Google’s “Cached Snapshot” is a Great Way to Check http:/ Using the “Cached” link on any search result, you can see what Google’s seen.
  • 21. Clean, Crawlable URLsBetter http:/ More on good URL structures here:
  • 22. Preferably All on a Single Sub/Root Domain http:/
  • 23. Logical, Shallow Information Architecture http:/
  • 24. No Duplicate Content http:/ content causes problems beyond just rankings – it can hurt your esteem/trust in the engines’eyes:
  • 25. Rel Canonical to the Rescue (Sometimes) http:/ sitemaps
  • 26. Proper Redirects (301 v. 302, etc.) Good for Users301 = Permanent Redirect Good for Search Engines Good for Web Servers Fine for Users302 = Temporary Redirect Bad for Search Engines (treated as temporary) Good for Web Servers Fails for non-JS Users (including many mobiles) Javascript Redirect May not be counted by Search Engines Slower on Web Servers Fine for Users Meta Refresh Search Engines Don’t Always Treat as Permanent http:/ Slower on Web Servers
  • 27. Effective Error Handling http:/
  • 28. Step 3: Delight Your Visitors withPhenomenal Design + Usability.
  • 29. Search Engines Finally Care About Design http:/
  • 30. Panda/Farmer Update was a First Step Generic design is one of the features highly correlated with lost traffic in Panda/Farmer. http:/
  • 31. Great Design is Surprisingly Easy & Affordable http:/ Using the search query “CSS Gallery” will bring up tons of sites like
  • 32. Many Usability Basics are Intuitive http:/
  • 33. Buy “Don’t Make Me Think.” Memorize It. http:/ A great sample chapter is here:
  • 34. Use Your Analytics to Establish Baselines and Measure Progress http:/ Google Analytics is totally free!
  • 35. Employ Usability Testing Software to Get Specific http:/
  • 36. Step 4: Use Words Your Customers Use; Do Keyword Research.
  • 37. The Best Keywords Are: High Volume (many searches/month) Low Competition (weak sites/pages in the top 10) High Value (large % of visitors convert) http:/ tricky part is finding these terms/phrases
  • 38. Keyword Research Starts w/ the Right Brainstorming Process http:/ Graphic via Elliance:
  • 39. Researching Keyword Volume: Google’s AdWords Tool http:/
  • 40. Microsoft AdCenter Keyword Data http:/
  • 41. Determining Keyword Difficulty Number of results is meaningless We want to know how “strong” these sites/pages are And how our site’s/page’s metrics compare http:/
  • 42. SEOmoz Has a Tool to Help With This http:/
  • 43. Determining a Keyword’s “Value” 1,000 200 Visitors Searched “Usability Visitors Searched “User TestingTesting” and Arrived at the Site Software” and Arrived at the Site 20 40Visitors Took the Product Tour Visitors Took the Product Tour Conversion Rate: 2 0.2% 5% 10 Visitors Bought the Software Visitors Bought the Software http:/ Keyword volume is initially appealing, but conversion rate is critical to the evaluation!
  • 44. Buying PPC is a Great Way to Test How do these visitors perform? http:/ Just be aware that PPC behavior isn’t always the same as organic click behavior
  • 45. Put the Data Together and Start with Low-Hanging Fruit http:/ I like to use heat indices based on estimated value: Excel can do this automatically
  • 46. Step 5: Optimize your Pages Properly; Get Keyword Targeting Right.
  • 47. Title TagsBetter Usability Testing Software | | Usability Testing Software Usability Testing Software Usability Testing, Usability Test, User Testing, User Software UserTesting.comWorse NA http:/
  • 48. Keywords in the URL Help, TooBetter http:/ Not only is there direct benefit, but people who link using the URL will pass good anchor text, too
  • 49. Meta Description TITLE: Low Cost Usability Testing - UserTesting.comMETA DESCRIPTION: Usability testing has never been easier.UserTesting.coms online usability testing is the cheapest, fastestway to find out why visitors leave your website. A good meta description acts like ad copy and draws the searcher in: http:/
  • 50. Meta Keywords? The search engines don’t use these at all (and haven’t since the early 2000s) http:/
  • 51. Body Text Keyword UsageNot only do search engines like to see keywords in copy, but visitors will be comforted to see http:/ you have content that addresses their query, too.
  • 52. Keyword Density vs. TF*IDF vs. Topic Modeling http:/
  • 53. Images & Alt AttributesKeywords in alt attributes are surprisingly well correlated with higher rankings http:/
  • 54. H1, H2, H3 Headlines Keywords in H(x) tags are not particularly well correlated with high rankings, but may provide some, minor value. http:/
  • 55. The Trouble with Domain Names http:/
  • 56. Rel=Canonical on Every Page? http:/
  • 57. Step 6:Make Search Engine Tools & Protocols Work for You.
  • 58. XML Sitemaps http:/ program can help -
  • 59. HTML Sitemaps http:/ Sitemap Page from
  • 60. RSS Feeds http:/ - – is a great tool for setting up and monitoring feeds
  • 61. Google Webmaster ToolsIt’shttp:/ Free! Available at
  • 62. Crawl Errors & Error Sources http:/ of the time, you’ll want to fix these up.
  • 63. SEOmoz Does a Good Job of This, Too http:/ Via the PRO Web App:
  • 64. Bing Webmaster Tools http:/
  • 65. Step 7: Earn Citations Engines Can See;Build Links, Tweets, Likes & Shares.
  • 66. From 1999 – 2008, What Page Ranked #1 for the Queries “Exit” and “Leave”? http:/
  • 67. From 1999 – 2008, What Page Ranked #1 for the Queries “Exit” and “Leave”? http:/
  • 68. Ahh… The Power of Links http:/
  • 69. What Makes a Great Link? Editorially given From a trusted source Uses descriptive anchor text Points to the right page http:/
  • 70. Google + Bing Now Counting Facebook & TwitterDanny Sullivan: If an article is retweeted or referenced much inTwitter, do you count that as a signal outside of finding any non-nofollowed links that may naturally result from it?Google: Yes, we do use it as a signal. It is used as a signal in ourorganic and news rankings. We also use it to enhance our newsuniversal by marking how many people shared an article http:/
  • 71. SEO Properties of Classic HTML Links URL Rel=“Nofollow” (the link target) (a tag that indicates search engines shouldn’t trust/count this link) <p><a href= rel=“nofollow”> SEOmoz’s Website </a> is a good resource for those seeking to learn more about search engine optimization.</p> Anchor text Surrounding Text (tells the engine what (may provide context on this link is about) the link’s relevance) http:/ Text goes here
  • 72. SEO Properties of Tweets Tweeter URL (the authority/importance of (the link target) the tweeting person matters) Retweets (possible signal that a link/ tweet is more important) Surrounding Text (in tweets, this sometimes seems used like anchor text) http:/
  • 73. SEO Properties of Facebook Shares URL (the link target) Shares (how many users have shared the link) http:/ Shares, Likes + Updates must be PUBLIC or Google/Bing can’t “see” them.
  • 74. Why Do People Link/Tweet/Share? Many of these blogs will use the badge and link to the list, because it makes them look good! http:/
  • 75. Link Building & Social Sharing Resources • Beginner’s Guide: Chapter 7 – Growing Links & Popularity • Link Building Blog Posts on SEOmoz • Webinar on Link Building Strategies • 101 Ways to Build Links from SEOBook • Link Building Presentations on Slideshare • The Science of Retweets from Dan Zarrella http:/ These should help you get started!
  • 76. Step 8: Don’t Go it Alone;Help Your Community Help You.
  • 77. Encourage & Reward Community on Your Site http:/ At Moz, we’ve made community central to our site:
  • 78. Spread Your Message Across the Web News/Media/PR SEO Email Blogs + Blogging Research/White Papers InfographicsComment Marketing Social Networks Online Video INBOUND MARKETING! Webinars Forums (Find Your Audience Organically on the Web) Document SharingSocial Bookmarking Word of Mouth Direct/Referring Links Podcasting http:/ Type-In Traffic Q+A Sites
  • 79. Blogs & Blog Commentshttp:/
  • 80. Forums & Discussion Boards http:/
  • 81. Social Profiles & InteractionFacebook Company Page Google Profile SlideShare Profile Twitter Profile Crunchbase Page Reddit AccountLinkedIn Company Page Quora Profile StumbleUpon Account YouTube Account Page StackExchange Account Crunchbase Page Scribd Profile Wikipedia Profile http:/ This is my top list of social sites to register with, but there’s likely more that are relevant to your niche.
  • 82. Answer Questions on Q+A Sites http:/
  • 83. Syndicate Your Content Dozens of sites syndicate SEOmoz’s blog helping to send links and traffic back to the site http:/
  • 84. Find Unique Ways to Engage & Reward UrbanSpoon’s Blogger Outreach Program Sparked Thousands of Links + Great Awareness in Each City: http:/
  • 85. Step 9: Get Analytics Set Up Right; Track What Matters.
  • 86. Basic Google Analytics Installation http:/
  • 87. Key SEO Metric #1: Visits / Search Engine These ones here! http:/ tells you how many searches resulted in a click on your site in the results
  • 88. Key SEO Metric #2:Keywords Sending 1+ Visits / Search Engine This One! http:/ Track this over time to see if you’re ranking for more unique keyphrases
  • 89. Key SEO Metric #3:# of Pages Receiving Traffic from Each Engine This One! http:/
  • 90. SEOmoz PRO Can Help Here Too http:/ tab of
  • 91. Tracking Keyword Rankings http:/
  • 92. Critical: Set Up “Goals” / “Conversions” http:/
  • 93. Understand Your Website’s Conversion Funnel Home Page List of Cheeses Hours + Directions 15% 10% Hopefully, this means a customer is going to come buy some cheese! This is the weakest form of a funnel – applying actions to things like forms, emails, http:/ “buy” buttons, checkout pages, etc. is a better way to go.
  • 94. Step 10: The Web is Not Static; Test & Improve
  • 95. More Traffic Home Page List of Cheeses Hours + Directions 15% 10%More visits to the home page means more people will decide to visit It’s http:/ a lot of hard work to get more visits, though, and we don’t know if they’ll be the kind who love cheese!
  • 96. A Better FunnelHome Page List of Cheeses Hours + Directions 25% 20%A better “conversion rate” means more peoplewho already visit the site will come to the store! http:/ Woo hoo! Now for every 1,000 people that visit the site, 25 are potential cheese buyers!
  • 97. A/B Split Testing Resources: - Awesome tool – easyto use, popular, good plugins - Another great option withexcellent visuals - Hosted, so no dev required! Very easy to use and well made - Free, but sometimes complex/confusing - Don’t personally have experience with this one http:/
  • 98. Test Content Types Blog Videos Photos Email Newsletters Embeddable Content Webinars Slideshows Questions + Answers Infographics Research/White Papers Web Apps Community ForumSome of these may resonate with you and your audience, others may not. You’ll never know http:/ you experiment!
  • 99. Test Marketing Channels Step #1: Discover Find inbound marketing paths that look promising and make a list. Step #2:TestInvest a few days/hours building authentic value in that niche/sector. Step #3: Measure Use your web analytics to track primary + second-order impact Step #4: Repeat Throw out low ROI projects; repeat high ROI ones.
  • 100. Ranking Well is Not Enough
  • 101. We Must DESERVE to Rank in Order to Win in the Long Run
  • 102. Q+ARand Fishkin, CEO & Co-Founder, SEOmoz• Twitter: @randfish You can now try SEOmoz PRO Free!• Blog:• Email: