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FirstFocus Search Engine Optimization - Back To SEO Basics

Presented as SES Amsterdam March 17th 2009

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FirstFocus Search Engine Optimization - Back To SEO Basics

  1. 1. Search Engine Strategies Amsterdam 2009 SEO - back to basics Menno Flikkema, FirstFocus bv (dutch) (international)
  2. 2. Welcome! <ul><li>Menno Flikkema </li></ul><ul><li>Search Engine Optimization Consultant (SEO) </li></ul><ul><li>FirstFocus bv </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Since 2004 specialist in organic search for international clients (NL, IE, DE, CH, PL, BE) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Clients mostly B2B but also travel, finance </li></ul></ul><ul><li>FirstFocus audits sites, develops search tools and OnTarget SEO CMS </li></ul><ul><ul><li> (dutch) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> (international) </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Overview <ul><li>Part 1: Fact Based Marketing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Changing world of search </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quality traffic – what is your share? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make it measurable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use search to start a dialogue </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Part 2: SEO back to basics </li></ul><ul><ul><li> business case </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technology and the value of a webpage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Optimizing content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The impact of your neighborhood </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. New channels change nature of web 2001 : So I have to tell about this thing my cat did today 2004 : Pictures of my cat 2005 : Seems logical, movies of my cat 2007 : 01:12 My cat just sneezed 01:13 My cat sneezed again. 01:16 The cat hasn’t sneezed recently 01:16 Getting worried 2008: follow my cat 24/7 March 3 rd , 2009: In a survey by German broadband association Bitkom around 84 percent of respondents aged 19-29 said they would rather do without their current partner or an automobile than forego their connection to the Web. ( reuters ) 2009: Y ou did WHAT to that poor cat?
  5. 5. Changing world of search
  6. 6. This is how skittles does it
  7. 7. This is how Ryanair does it
  8. 8. I t all boils down to traffic 10-30% 20-30% 20-30% 40-60% CTR = Click Through Rate
  9. 9.
  10. 10. T ry to make some educated guesses research suggests avg. 89/11% CTR from First SERP page ~70% Second page and further ~30% Very different per keyword!
  11. 11. What is your average CTR? 20 % 18 % 15 % 13 % 22 % 10 % 5 % 3 % 2 % 25 % 0,3 % 15 %
  12. 12. Adwords gives insight in search volume Google “keyword tool external”
  13. 13. What is the potential of search marketing for you? <ul><li>Calculate the missed opportunity cost of not ranking for information, products and services that you offer </li></ul>x average conversion rate x x <ul><li>E.g.10000/day x 10% x 3% x €50 = €1.500/day </li></ul><ul><li>Ex. CPM revenues (visitors x avg.pages/visitor) </li></ul>average transaction amount # of people searching for your keywords expected click-through rate
  14. 14. Part 2 case
  15. 15.
  16. 16. What is Hotelvandaag.? <ul><li>Hotel booking site with no booking fees </li></ul><ul><li>Quality beyond hotels </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What else does a visitor need? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ratings and reviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Michelin, Gault Millau Restaurants </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interaction, Social Media </li></ul><ul><ul><li>With hotels: comments, micro blog </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>With users: Twitter, Flickr and Google Maps </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Create a community driven site and stimulate user generated content </li></ul><ul><li>Use organic search to drive traffic </li></ul>
  17. 17. The basics of SEO SEA Technology Content Authority Quick wins Time consuming but necessary Consistent content, patience, good neighborhoods €€€ Buy your way in, but not now SEO Time, effort
  18. 18. SEO: Technology Technology
  19. 19. code Make sure your site doesn’t end up like this Google “” SEOmoz crawl test
  20. 20. Standards based design Title and URL Alternative to JS Navigation Proper lists Headers
  21. 21. What’s ideal for robots? <ul><li>Search engines are programmed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Performance </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Clean code that follows W3C standards </li></ul><ul><li>A strong domain </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Name, trust </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pretty URL’s, Unique titles, Meta description </li></ul><ul><ul><li>People need confirmation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Obvious content area </li></ul><ul><li>Clear navigation structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Most underestimated SEO factor </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Internal link structure
  23. 23.
  24. 24.
  25. 25.
  26. 26. SEO: content Content This should be a continuous process
  27. 27. What is top of mind? I need a hotel reservation! Going out, weekend city trip Need hotel for business Luxury Need a hotel today Looking for reviews Want boutique hotel
  28. 28. Create new relevant content <ul><li>What else does a visitor to a city need other than a Hotel? </li></ul><ul><li>Adding selected restaurants, culture and shopping seems to decrease relevance </li></ul><ul><li>… but creates and enormous long tail of traffic for very specific searches </li></ul><ul><li>This is added value for the potential customer who needs a hotel </li></ul>
  29. 29. The long tail works for Nice hotel Romantic hotel Boutique hotel Restaurants 58000+ different queries
  30. 30. Check your focus Use online tools to check focus Each page has a content fingerprint Search “keyword cloud”
  31. 31. SEO: Authority This should be a continuous process Authority looking at who’s linking to the competition
  32. 32. Yahoo! Search “ –”
  33. 33.
  34. 34. Migrate existing trusted domains Redirect page by page The fast track to links 30 000+ links “ Never buy links, buy sites!” Marcus Tandler, SES Hamburg 2008 Use the power of your old domains
  35. 35. Many new improvements on the way <ul><li>Content </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus of pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improve bounce rates </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Booking flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>GUI design A/B testing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Conversion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All pages have similar design </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create themed designs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Even more dialogue! </li></ul></ul>
  36. 36. Improve conversion with search Make search central to fact based online marketing and improved conversion Search Optimization Analytics Reports
  37. 37. Conclusions I <ul><li>Changing times require new business models, be critical of your media mix </li></ul><ul><li>Make search a process – measure, evaluate and improve </li></ul><ul><li>SEO Basics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Each page has a ‘fingerprint’ that makes it unique </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each page has value that it can share </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Learn from your competitors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use SEO tools to your advantage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If your technology is lacking – change it </li></ul></ul>
  38. 38. Conclusions II <ul><li>Use existing sites to boost new content – old, forgotten sites may be very valuable </li></ul><ul><li>Interact with users and use social media to gain unique content and links </li></ul><ul><li>Maintain a dialogue -- Integrate channels, use search queries to improve presentation and conversion </li></ul>
  39. 39. Questions? <ul><li>Follow me! </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Menno Flikkema </li></ul><ul><li>FirstFocus bv </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>