You don’t have to be high up in the org to be influencial.
It’s not just about buying beers.
It takes making real connections and building relationships
Microsoft.com is One Website w/ Many Parts
Microsoft.com is a collection of hundreds of “websites” that share one domain name
Each website impacts all of the other website’s success
Websites are managed individually
Websites are published using various content management systems
Subsidiary website structures are not optimal or consistent
Until now SEO has occurred on a site-by-site basis, not holistically
How Organic Search Works
Three main components of a search engine:
Software agent called a crawler (also called robot, bot, or spider) discovers web pages by following links
Crawlers only fetch a limited number of pages at a time (called threads). URLs of pages to fetch are stored in a queue.
Crawler adheres to exclusions listed in a robots.txt file and/or specific meta tags in code
Saves the source code of each successfully fetched page
Collects and filters content from each saved page
Filters duplicates and low quality pages
Organizes data for speed and relevance of returned results
Software processes search keywords and ranks web pages based on unique algorithms.
Algorithms consider on-the-page and off-the-page factors including web page copy, meta data, and inbound & internal links
Each search engine has a unique formula for determining relevance.
The SCOPE of Microsoft.com SEO is BIG
Major discrepancies in pages indexed is an indicator of severe structural issues
Live Search includes more pages but many are low quality pages that clutter results
Resolving complex structural issues enables quick discovery of new content and deep indexing of high-quality pages
PAGE Pages Indexed
Microsoft.com SEO Focus Areas Enabling Infrastructure & Influencing Change Focus on Measurable Business Outcomes PAGE Site-wide SEO Initiatives Organic Search Measurement Framework Search Center of Excellence Search Technology Suite Site-level SEO Programs Proof of Concepts (POC) Page-level
Site-wide SEO Initiatives - Top Five Barriers
Duplicate and undesirable pages
From a sampling of 97,000 URLs discovered during a SEO Proof of Concept program, only 7,000 had unique content. 90,000 were duplicates of the 7,000.
Excessive use of redirects
From a sampling of 400,000+ URLs on Microsoft.com, 40% pass through redirects. This large percentage of redirects increases the amount of time it takes for search engines to crawl the site and takes up valuable space in the search engine indexes.
Improper error handling
Search engines will continue to index outdated pages that serve the incorrect server response. When a URL is requested that does not exist, it is very important that the error is handled properly.
Structure of subsidiary content
Most subsidiary websites live on the Microsoft.com domain at the directory level (eg. www.microsoft.com/canada/ . Search engines do not typically use directory names to determine the geo location of a website. This prevents users from finding content for their region.
Low quality page titles and meta tags
Titles and meta descriptions are two basic, yet important components of SEO. Most of the titles and meta descriptions on Microsoft.com have not been written with SEO in mind. Some pages do not even have titles and meta descriptions.
Components to Successful SEO Metrics Compelling offers & User-friendly Content Authority Structure