BrightonSEO October 2022 - Martijn Scheybeler - SEO Testing: Find Out What Works for SEO

Martijn Scheijbeler
Martijn ScheijbelerSVP Marketing at RVshare
SEO testing: Find out
what works for SEO
@MartijnSch
Martijn Scheybeler
VP Marketing at RVshare
👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋
Who has done SEO testing?
@MARTIJNSCH
🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵
I bet, you’ve all done SEO testing
@MARTIJNSCH
👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋
Who has done SEO experimentation?
@MARTIJNSCH
What is SEO Testing?
How can YOU do SEO
experimentation?
What’s been tested?
@MARTIJNSCH
“WHAT MOVES THE 💉 ?
* NEEDLE
”
@MARTIJNSCH
“ WHAT CAUSES THE
NEEDLE TO MOVE.
”
@MARTIJNSCH
Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
“ WHAT CAUSES THE
NEEDLE TO MOVE.
”
@MARTIJNSCH
Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
Consistently!
BrightonSEO October 2022 - Martijn Scheybeler - SEO Testing: Find Out What Works for SEO
Can you
fi
nd what works
across multiple sites?
@MARTIJNSCH
Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
Does changing X work for site Y?
@MARTIJNSCH
Lucky you! You’re moving the needle for your business, keep it up! 🥇
Does changing X work in vertical Y?
@MARTIJNSCH
Holy smokes! You might have found something that is repeatable and could impact results in 1 industry.
Does changing X work in vertical Y,
across industries Z, A, B, C?
@MARTIJNSCH
Well holy 💨🔥 you might have found something that could mean correlation == causation.
Can you create a 🛝📕?
@MARTIJNSCH
Taking the 🎨 out of 🧬
@MARTIJNSCH
Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
Don’t worry, 🎨 is still important.
@MARTIJNSCH
You still have to come up with what to test, and be creative on how to best implement/strategize it.
This is NOT simple.
@MARTIJNSCH
Have you ever read a science paper? Doesn’t matter the type of science.
What is SEO Testing?
How can YOU do SEO
experimentation?
What’s been tested?
@MARTIJNSCH
WHAT WORKS & CAN SCALE?
@MARTIJNSCH
How to Test
@MARTIJNSCH
@MARTIJNSCH
@MARTIJNSCH
Pre - Post
Content Testing Technical SEO Internal Linking
Uplift Uplift + Pre/Post
✅ ❌ ❌
❌ ✅ ✅
Analysis
Engineering
Scalable
@MARTIJNSCH
Version A
Template
Version B
Version 2
Version 1 Version 4
Version 3
Distributing Tra
ffi
c in SEO Experimentation
25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages
50% of pages 50% of pages
@MARTIJNSCH
Lessons Learned (the 🤺 way)
Learning 1:
Divide in 4,
not in 2
Learning 2:
Have a
hypothesis
Learning 3:
Be able to
analyze!
Avoid Analysis = Paralysis
Having One is Better Than Nothing
Provide More Control For Anomalies
* HARD
@MARTIJNSCH
Bonus Lesson
Learning 4:
Business
Criteria
Make Money & Be Aware of Business Rules
@MARTIJNSCH
Solutions/‘Software’ for SEO Testing
🛠
DIY Similar.ai
@MARTIJNSCH
Going Advanced 🛠
Aka. You don’t have engineers or support to solve (your) issues.
@MARTIJNSCH
Edge SEO
Through
@MARTIJNSCH
or other providers.
Rewrite on the 🦋
* FLY
How do you know what worked?
@MARTIJNSCH
Measurement Framework
Often Measure Backwards: Transactions > Sessions > Indexed > Crawled > Published.
@MARTIJNSCH
Pre-Post / A versus B / Combined
@MARTIJNSCH
Pre-Post Analysis
@MARTIJNSCH
————
July 2022
Initial launch of the page.
————
September 2022
You changed the META description
and tweaked the title to better align.
🚀 📈
————
October 2022
Results are taking off!
Version A
Template
Version B
Version 2
Version 1 Version 4
Version 3
A/B Testing
25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages
50% of pages 50% of pages
@MARTIJNSCH
Version A
Template
Version B
Post
Pre Post
Pre
Combining measurement theories
Month X Month Y
50% of pages 50% of pages
@MARTIJNSCH
Month X Month Y
Did the 🌎 around you change?
@MARTIJNSCH
Offsetting 🦢 Black Swan Events with Actual Results
Upstream/Industry Metrics
Google Search Console
Search Volume & Number of Ranked Keywords + CTR%
@MARTIJNSCH
SEMrush / Ahrefs
Search Visibility & Average Ranked Keywords
Internal Metrics
🪵
Log Files
# of Pages Crawled & Crawl Frequency
Google Search Console
# of Pages Indexed & Other Metrics
Google Analytics
Tra
ffi
c + Transactions & Other Business Metrics
@MARTIJNSCH
SEO Experimentation should
drive revenue but it’s not always
the intent
@MARTIJNSCH
“ ”
Case 1:
Internal Linking
Case 2:
HTML Sitemaps + XML Sitemaps
Case 3:
Title & META Description
@MARTIJNSCH
XML SITEMAP PING
🛠
Letting a search engine know that an XML sitemap
has been refreshed/updated by pinging them seems
like something that could speed up the crawl of the
actual XML sitemap which speeds up indexation?
Idea
By pinging Google and Bing after an XML sitemap is
updated, we expect to see an increase in time to
discovery/crawl of the new URLs and the XML
sitemap being crawled.
Hypothesis
After an XML sitemap has been regenerated, we
send a ping to Google and Bing with the URL of the
XML sitemap.
Solution
Measured the impact in our log
fi
les of Google and
Bing looking at the XML sitemap after the ping and
saw an immediate crawl basically start to happen.
Down the line this was leading to faster discovery of
URLs and re-crawls which was a primary objective.
Learning
💡
🤑
🧐
🛠
@MARTIJNSCH
INTERNAL LINKING
After creating hundreds of guides over the years
around popular destinations for camper rentals. We
needed to make sure that all the long-tail keywords
that it picked up along the way are properly getting
attention through internal links.
Idea
Will adding internal links push the internal authority
of guides for long-tail keywords. We think this will
push the average ranking of pages.
Hypothesis
Implement Similar.ai to enable us to create link
blocks on the
fl
y based on our own business needs.
Solution
Don’t have all learnings, yet. But important to realize
that the smallest impact on this test will have a long.
Learning
💡
🤑
🧐
🛠
@MARTIJNSCH
If you’re hoping for just 📈 results…
Yeah, I’m sorry! 📉
@MARTIJNSCH
HTML SITEMAP
🛠 DIY
With the amount of orphaned pages it’s becoming a
problem to get more additional pages ranked for
long-tail keywords.
Idea
By adding HTML sitemaps we’re able to provide
internal links to currently orphaned pages. This will
help power additional rankings for long-tail
keywords.
Hypothesis
Implement HTML sitemaps that will list links to
currently orphaned pages.
Solution
Adding HTML sitemaps and providing a crawlable
structure increased the number of pages indexed by
X%.
Learning
💡
🤑
🧐
🛠
@MARTIJNSCH
Who’s already doing this❓
&
Who can you learn from❓
@MARTIJNSCH
Share results! 📈📉
@MARTIJNSCH
A negative result of your experiment is NOT a failure, it’s a learning. So share it!
👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋
Want to do more with this next week?
@MARTIJNSCH
Confidential Do Not Share
Thank you.
Enjoy BrightonSEO!
1 of 48

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BrightonSEO October 2022 - Martijn Scheybeler - SEO Testing: Find Out What Works for SEO

  • 1. SEO testing: Find out what works for SEO @MartijnSch Martijn Scheybeler VP Marketing at RVshare
  • 2. 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 Who has done SEO testing? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 3. 🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵 🫵 I bet, you’ve all done SEO testing @MARTIJNSCH
  • 4. 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 Who has done SEO experimentation? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 5. What is SEO Testing? How can YOU do SEO experimentation? What’s been tested? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 6. “WHAT MOVES THE 💉 ? * NEEDLE ” @MARTIJNSCH
  • 7. “ WHAT CAUSES THE NEEDLE TO MOVE. ” @MARTIJNSCH Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
  • 8. “ WHAT CAUSES THE NEEDLE TO MOVE. ” @MARTIJNSCH Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation. Consistently!
  • 10. Can you fi nd what works across multiple sites? @MARTIJNSCH Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
  • 11. Does changing X work for site Y? @MARTIJNSCH Lucky you! You’re moving the needle for your business, keep it up! 🥇
  • 12. Does changing X work in vertical Y? @MARTIJNSCH Holy smokes! You might have found something that is repeatable and could impact results in 1 industry.
  • 13. Does changing X work in vertical Y, across industries Z, A, B, C? @MARTIJNSCH Well holy 💨🔥 you might have found something that could mean correlation == causation.
  • 14. Can you create a 🛝📕? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 15. Taking the 🎨 out of 🧬 @MARTIJNSCH Figuring out if correlation actually does mean causation.
  • 16. Don’t worry, 🎨 is still important. @MARTIJNSCH You still have to come up with what to test, and be creative on how to best implement/strategize it.
  • 17. This is NOT simple. @MARTIJNSCH Have you ever read a science paper? Doesn’t matter the type of science.
  • 18. What is SEO Testing? How can YOU do SEO experimentation? What’s been tested? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 19. WHAT WORKS & CAN SCALE? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 22. @MARTIJNSCH Pre - Post Content Testing Technical SEO Internal Linking Uplift Uplift + Pre/Post ✅ ❌ ❌ ❌ ✅ ✅ Analysis Engineering Scalable
  • 24. Version A Template Version B Version 2 Version 1 Version 4 Version 3 Distributing Tra ffi c in SEO Experimentation 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 50% of pages 50% of pages @MARTIJNSCH
  • 25. Lessons Learned (the 🤺 way) Learning 1: Divide in 4, not in 2 Learning 2: Have a hypothesis Learning 3: Be able to analyze! Avoid Analysis = Paralysis Having One is Better Than Nothing Provide More Control For Anomalies * HARD @MARTIJNSCH
  • 26. Bonus Lesson Learning 4: Business Criteria Make Money & Be Aware of Business Rules @MARTIJNSCH
  • 27. Solutions/‘Software’ for SEO Testing 🛠 DIY Similar.ai @MARTIJNSCH
  • 28. Going Advanced 🛠 Aka. You don’t have engineers or support to solve (your) issues. @MARTIJNSCH
  • 29. Edge SEO Through @MARTIJNSCH or other providers. Rewrite on the 🦋 * FLY
  • 30. How do you know what worked? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 31. Measurement Framework Often Measure Backwards: Transactions > Sessions > Indexed > Crawled > Published. @MARTIJNSCH
  • 32. Pre-Post / A versus B / Combined @MARTIJNSCH
  • 33. Pre-Post Analysis @MARTIJNSCH ———— July 2022 Initial launch of the page. ———— September 2022 You changed the META description and tweaked the title to better align. 🚀 📈 ———— October 2022 Results are taking off!
  • 34. Version A Template Version B Version 2 Version 1 Version 4 Version 3 A/B Testing 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 25% of pages 50% of pages 50% of pages @MARTIJNSCH
  • 35. Version A Template Version B Post Pre Post Pre Combining measurement theories Month X Month Y 50% of pages 50% of pages @MARTIJNSCH Month X Month Y
  • 36. Did the 🌎 around you change? @MARTIJNSCH Offsetting 🦢 Black Swan Events with Actual Results
  • 37. Upstream/Industry Metrics Google Search Console Search Volume & Number of Ranked Keywords + CTR% @MARTIJNSCH SEMrush / Ahrefs Search Visibility & Average Ranked Keywords
  • 38. Internal Metrics 🪵 Log Files # of Pages Crawled & Crawl Frequency Google Search Console # of Pages Indexed & Other Metrics Google Analytics Tra ffi c + Transactions & Other Business Metrics @MARTIJNSCH
  • 39. SEO Experimentation should drive revenue but it’s not always the intent @MARTIJNSCH “ ”
  • 40. Case 1: Internal Linking Case 2: HTML Sitemaps + XML Sitemaps Case 3: Title & META Description @MARTIJNSCH
  • 41. XML SITEMAP PING 🛠 Letting a search engine know that an XML sitemap has been refreshed/updated by pinging them seems like something that could speed up the crawl of the actual XML sitemap which speeds up indexation? Idea By pinging Google and Bing after an XML sitemap is updated, we expect to see an increase in time to discovery/crawl of the new URLs and the XML sitemap being crawled. Hypothesis After an XML sitemap has been regenerated, we send a ping to Google and Bing with the URL of the XML sitemap. Solution Measured the impact in our log fi les of Google and Bing looking at the XML sitemap after the ping and saw an immediate crawl basically start to happen. Down the line this was leading to faster discovery of URLs and re-crawls which was a primary objective. Learning 💡 🤑 🧐 🛠 @MARTIJNSCH
  • 42. INTERNAL LINKING After creating hundreds of guides over the years around popular destinations for camper rentals. We needed to make sure that all the long-tail keywords that it picked up along the way are properly getting attention through internal links. Idea Will adding internal links push the internal authority of guides for long-tail keywords. We think this will push the average ranking of pages. Hypothesis Implement Similar.ai to enable us to create link blocks on the fl y based on our own business needs. Solution Don’t have all learnings, yet. But important to realize that the smallest impact on this test will have a long. Learning 💡 🤑 🧐 🛠 @MARTIJNSCH
  • 43. If you’re hoping for just 📈 results… Yeah, I’m sorry! 📉 @MARTIJNSCH
  • 44. HTML SITEMAP 🛠 DIY With the amount of orphaned pages it’s becoming a problem to get more additional pages ranked for long-tail keywords. Idea By adding HTML sitemaps we’re able to provide internal links to currently orphaned pages. This will help power additional rankings for long-tail keywords. Hypothesis Implement HTML sitemaps that will list links to currently orphaned pages. Solution Adding HTML sitemaps and providing a crawlable structure increased the number of pages indexed by X%. Learning 💡 🤑 🧐 🛠 @MARTIJNSCH
  • 45. Who’s already doing this❓ & Who can you learn from❓ @MARTIJNSCH
  • 46. Share results! 📈📉 @MARTIJNSCH A negative result of your experiment is NOT a failure, it’s a learning. So share it!
  • 47. 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 Want to do more with this next week? @MARTIJNSCH
  • 48. Confidential Do Not Share Thank you. Enjoy BrightonSEO!