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Jon Wuebben | SearchLove San Diego, 'Optimizing Content in a World of Never Ending Algorithm Changes'


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Most people in this industry know the ins and outs of the Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird Google updates. But how many of us understand exactly how content and SEO are interlinked? In this talk, Jon is going to teach us how to adopt a more advanced approach to optimizing our content, talking through real case studies and the latest algorithm changes

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Jon Wuebben | SearchLove San Diego, 'Optimizing Content in a World of Never Ending Algorithm Changes'

  1. 1. Optimizing Content in a World of Never Ending Algorithm Changes Jon Wuebben, CEO
  2. 2. Fundamentals • Google makes over 600 changes to its algorithm in a year • Vast majority of these are not announced • When Google makes a big change, they give it a name * Panda algorithm * Penguin algorithm * Hummingbird algorithm 2
  3. 3. Ensuring Great Rankings • Create content that answers users queries! • Don’t just try to rank for a particular keyword. • Google's goal: encourage webmasters to publish content that’s best of its kind & to deliver answers to people who are searching. • Lost rank? Google has lost trust in your site's quality, either on-site quality or the legitimacy of backlinks. • Fix the quality issues to regain the algorithm's trust and see improvements. 3
  4. 4. Checklist for High Quality Content * • Would you trust the information presented in this article? • Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow? • Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations? • Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers or does the site generate content by guessing what might rank well in search engines? • Does the article provide original content or information, reporting, research, or analysis? 4 (From blog post by Google Employee Amit Singhal)
  5. 5. …Continued…. • Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results? • Does the article describe both sides of a story? • Is the site a recognized authority on its topic? • Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites? 5
  6. 6. Panda – Launched 2/23/11 • Purpose: try to show high-quality sites higher in search results and demote sites that may be of lower quality. • Many called it the "Farmer" update as it seemed to affect content farms *(sites that aggregate information from many sources, often stealing that information from other sites) 6
  7. 7. Penguin - Launched 4/24/12 • Goal: Reduce the trust that Google has in sites that have cheated by creating unnatural backlinks in order to gain an advantage in results. • Also impacted “Anchor text” (text underlined in a link) • SEO’s manipulated the hell out of anchor text 7
  8. 8. Anchor Text Example • Landscaping company in Orlando • Cheating: Create a bunch of self made links & use anchor text in links that contain phrases like Orlando Landscaping Company, Landscapers in Orlando & Orlando Landscaping. • Pre-Penguin: Creating links from low quality sites was effective. (directory listings, self made articles, and links in comments and forum posts) • Post-Penguin: Not so much • Penguin algorithm is Google putting a "trust factor" on your links. 8
  9. 9. Hummingbird – 9/26/13 • Completely different from Penguin or Panda. • Was a total overhaul of the entire Google algorithm • Panda & Penguin – new engine part (filter or fuel pump) • Hummingbird wasn't a new part; it was a completely new engine. • Goal: for Google to better understand a user's query. • And for Google's voice search to be more effective. *Typing a search query: "best Seattle SEO company” * Speaking a query: “Which firm in Seattle offers the best SEO services? • Point of Hummingbird: better understand what users mean when they have queries like this. 9
  10. 10. Content Tactics 10
  11. 11. Goal: Start Title With Keyword • Most important on-page SEO factor • study: pages that started title with a keyword ranked higher than pages with the keyword in the middle or at the end 11
  12. 12. Add Search Love Bling with Multimedia • Text can only take your content so far • Engaging images, videos & diagrams reduce bounce rate & increase time on site • These are 2 user interaction-based Google ranking factors • Increases perceived value of your content: people more likely to link to it. 12
  13. 13. Add Modifiers To Your Title • Adding modifiers like “2014”, “best”, “guide”, and “review” can help you rank for long tail versions of your target keyword. • Great trick to wrangle in those long tail searchers that use 5-9 words per search • These modifiers aren’t targeting any particular long tail keyword. 13
  14. 14. Post Long Content • Adage “length is strength” supported by a industry study • Found that longer content ranked significantly higher in Google. • Aim for at least 1500 words when targeting competitive keywords. • Brings in more long tail traffic 14
  15. 15. Sprinkle LSI Keywords (Latent Semantic Indexing) • Synonyms that Google uses to determine a page’s relevancy (and possibly quality) • Long content makes it likely that you’ll naturally include LSI keywords in your content • Search for your keyword in Google and scroll down to the “Searches Related to…” area at the bottom 15
  16. 16. What Quality Content Can Do • Repeat visitors • Chrome bookmarks • Time on site • “Dwell” time *Measures how long a searcher stays on your page before hitting the back button. *Increase dwell time by writing long, engaging content that keeps people reading. *Shows Google you gave them something of value while there 16
  17. 17. 17 Ranking Factor Weighting
  18. 18. What is Your Reward? (From Rand Fishkin) • Have the best opportunity to rank highly in Google and Bing • Earn traffic from social networks like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ • Be worthy of links & shares from across web • Build your brand's perception, trust, and potential to convert visitors 18
  19. 19. “Uniquely Valuable” Content (Rand Fishkin) • An optimized page doesn't just provide unique content, but unique value. • Unique content: those words don't appear anywhere else on the web. • Unique value: usefulness & takeaways derived by visitors to the page. • Many pages can be "valuable," but few provide a truly unique kind of value • Put yourself in the minds of potential visitors; imagine a page that provides something so different & functional, it rises above everything else in its field. • Result? More social shares, links, bigger branding impact, and better ranking signals. 19
  20. 20. Examples • “The Baby Name Wizard” • “How Much Does a Website Cost” • “Scale of the Universe” • “The Best Instant Noodles of All Time” • “Top Social Networks by Users” 20
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  22. 22. Other Important To Do’s • Focus each piece of content on 1 keyword phrase. • Include the keyword in the content title. • Add the keyword to the content’s URL • Use your keyword in first 50 words • Link to credible outside sources • Create your content for human beings • Optimize images & video • Eliminate duplicate content 22
  23. 23. Prepare 12–Month Content Plan • Creating content on a whim when inspired is not viable for the long term. • 12-month content calendar allows for planning content around: *Holidays & Company milestones & Events *Variations in team workload and resource availability • Can include information needed for proper content optimization: *Ideas for SEO-friendly titles *Suggested links *Blog category and tags *Meta keywords and meta descriptions *Sample social media posts • Becomes much easier to publish content successfully, on time, and with appropriate optimization. 23
  24. 24. Questions? 24
  25. 25. Contact Me • (909) 437-7015 mobile • • Twitter: @jonwuebben 25