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SEO: Winning the Google Search Wars

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Slides from my talk at Digital DNA 2015 in Belfast, where I spoke about the three pillars of SEO and the two main SEO tactics: content marketing and outreach linkbuilding.

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SEO: Winning the Google Search Wars

  1. 1. POLEMIC D I G I T A L SEO: Winning the Google Search Wars Digital DNA 15 October 2015
  2. 2. POLEMIC D I G I T A L About Barry Adams • Founder of expert SEO consultancy Polemic Digital • Dutch (yes, really) • Twitter ranter: @badams • Lecturer on SEO, UX & Digital Strategy • Editor & blogger for StateofDigital.com • Also blogs at PolemicDigital.com/blog • 2014 DANI Digital Industries Person of the Year
  3. 3. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Value of Search Engine Optimisation
  4. 4. POLEMIC D I G I T A L UK Online Market • UK internet economy to make up approximately 10% of GDP in 2015 (± £160 billion) • 93% of online purchases start with a search engine query • 81% of consumers will research products online before making a major buying decision
  5. 5. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Search Engine Market • UK Search Engine Market: Google: 90% Bing: 6% Yahoo: 3% Other: 1% • Google handles 115 billion searches a month That’s over 44,000 search queries every second Google Bing Yahoo Other
  6. 6. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Search Engine Results Page
  7. 7. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Search Engine User Behaviour 70%+ of clicks on search results are on the organic listings 30% of users click here and on the right (Paid listings) 70% of users click here (Organic listings)
  8. 8. POLEMIC D I G I T A L SERP* Click Through Rate In Google’s search results, first place matters. *SERP = Search Engine Results Page Source: http://bada.ms/ctrstudy
  9. 9. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Three Pillars of SEO
  10. 10. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Three Pillars of SEO Technology Relevance Authority Relevance Technology Technology
  11. 11. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Technology: Website & Server • HTML code quality • Site indexing • Mobile Friendly • Load Speed • Structured Data Technology
  12. 12. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Relevance: On-site Optimisation • Keyword Focus • Navigation Structure • Title tags • Meta descriptions • Body content • Blog content Relevance
  13. 13. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Authority: Links • Number of links & linking domains • Quality of links • Anchor texts • Link relevance Authority
  14. 14. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Authority TechnologyRelevance Overlap
  15. 15. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Content Marketing
  16. 16. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Content Strategy “A content strategy for a website is a plan for the creation, publication, distribution, and management of content in various formats – text, video, images, interactive – that helps establish the online brand as a leader in its industry.”
  17. 17. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Content Strategy for SEO • Optimised content will contain the right keywords in the right places, thus increasing the website’s relevance. • Engaging content will be shared and linked to, thus increasing the website’s authority.
  18. 18. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Aspects of a Content Strategy 1. Set Objectives 2. Define Your Audience 3. Create a Content Calendar 4. Plan Your Content Promotion 5. Engage With Your Readers 6. Measure & Refine
  19. 19. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Matching Content with Search Intent Write content to match search intent at various stages of the sales funnel
  20. 20. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Content Marketing Case Study
  21. 21. POLEMIC D I G I T A L DigitalPrinting.co.uk • Online print on-demand • New brand, new website, no history • Competitors: Moo.com Vistaprint Printed.com
  22. 22. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Strategy Solid Technical SEO Great on-page optimisation Content marketing: 1 blog post (almost) every day Bi-monthly infographics
  23. 23. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Blog Posts • Focused on the concerns of print buyers What are their issues? What would they search for? How can we help them? • Examples of blog articles:  “5 tips for designing a roll up banner stand”  “How to survive your first ever exhibition or trade show”  “Top 10 things to remember when designing an A4 poster”  “Using printed brochures to tell a story”  “From design to print: how your leaflets are made”
  24. 24. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Infographics
  25. 25. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Social Sharing • Content is useless of no one sees it • Share abundantly on relevant social networks • Use paid promotions to win extra audience
  26. 26. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Results • Visitors from organic traffic increased 1300% year-on-year • Transactions from organic traffic increased 20-fold • Conversion rate from organic traffic increased 98% from 1.44% to 2.84% • Top 10 ranking on Google.co.uk for 5 targeted keywords including 1st for “digital printing UK” and 2nd for “digital printing” (behind wikipedia)
  27. 27. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Linkbuilding
  28. 28. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Links are crucial • Content alone is not enough to build authority. • Approximately 50%-60% of Google’s ranking algorithms are link-based.
  29. 29. POLEMIC D I G I T A L But… Google doesn’t like linkbuilding “Any links intended to manipulate PageRank or a site's ranking in Google search results may be considered part of a link scheme and a violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.” Source: http://bada.ms/googleguidelines
  30. 30. POLEMIC D I G I T A L So what’s a SEO to do? • We have to tread carefully and ensure that we acquire only ‘natural’ links. • That means we have to earn them. • Earned links are (or appear to be) entirely valid recommendations from one website to another.
  31. 31. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Outreach Linkbuilding ‘Outreach’ is basically PR for SEO purposes; 1. Research link prospects 2. Approach them with a personalised message 3. Offer to write guest content for their website/blog 4. Include a link in that guest article It’s a lot of manual effort – exactly what Google intends.
  32. 32. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Outreach Linkbuilding Case Study
  33. 33. POLEMIC D I G I T A L TargetDry.com • Manufacturer of outdoor waterproof clothing • Competitors: Regatta Cotswold Mountainwarehouse • Limited link authority on targetdry.com
  34. 34. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Strategy Targeted blogger outreach; Outdoor bloggers Fashion bloggers Lifestyle bloggers Send free product in return for a review + link
  35. 35. POLEMIC D I G I T A L
  36. 36. POLEMIC D I G I T A L The Results • Visitors from organic traffic have grown by 42% • New visitors grown by 45% • Transactions from organic traffic have grown by 40% • Conversion rate from organic traffic improved by 5%
  37. 37. POLEMIC D I G I T A L Questions? barry@polemicdigital.com www.polemicdigital.com twitter.com/polemicdigital twitter.com/badams

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