SEO Hot Topics 2012


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SEO Hot Topics 2012

  1. 1. SAScon 2012Presentation By: Amy Harris, Oliver Ortiz And Ian Wright
  2. 2. Key Points• Creating a brand is vital• Mobile is growing rapidly• Quality content is more important than ever• PRs and SEOs are increasingly operating in the same arena• Exact match anchor text and over optimised on-page content are on the way out• We’re all Blackhats now
  3. 3. Big Brand Perspective• We may now finally be in the year of the mobile• Mobile causes problems for site design (app v. site)• Social is much easier for some brands - Seatwave v. Moneysupermarket• Focus on consumer benefits, provide value or a gimmick• Goal for all brands is to turn users into ‘Brand Evangelists’• Build on top of Social rather just building for Social• Google updates mean more natural looking pages and link profiles – use a softer touch• Brand traffic ultimate goal, which also helps PPC
  4. 4. Stat-o-Rama: An Industry in Numbers• How many visits to search engines per month in the UK?• What month is the most popular for people to buy contact lenses? Why?• People are becoming wary of social media• Focus on terms in your industry luxury v. designer jewellery• Llloyds TSB – Facebook and Olympics 65% Social Media – 8% left to visit another page on Llloyds site – 50% of whom had never been on their site before• 1 in 5 minutes online is spent on Facebook• Non-PC share of internet growing quickly - 10% now
  5. 5. Running a European Search Campaign• Every country needs a different approach• Understand the market and do research• “About Us” page is important• Site needs to have a flavour of localization• Localize templates: Structure > Physical layout > Navigation• Local Domains are by far the safest• Send Google signals that eg. is the local Search Engine
  6. 6. • Landing page > always in preferred language• Use languages within the country, eg. Catalan• Newly translated Domain > at least 10 pages• Colours play a role• Education website for MBA, targeting Scandinavia and India.• In Scandinavia > Young people doing research (English)
  7. 7. • Main Factors to consider: • Design • Language • Colour • Their Own Payment Systems
  8. 8. Social Commerce• Evolving from something that already exists• “Social Giving”• Seal of approval from a friend > inspiration and discovery• Important to get key influencers to purchase• It is key to get someone who is engaged in the product they purchase
  9. 9. Are PRs from Venus and SEOs from Mars• SEOs and PRs increasingly operate in the same arena but approach things differently• PRs most concerned with revenue not other KPIs• PRs measure influence and brand rather than links and rankings – Brand links rather than anchor• Launch new things in January as everyone wants to write about the next new thing• Writing press releases try to think what we
  10. 10. Breaking Free of Panda
  11. 11. Google Updates?• Google Panda (Feb 2011)• Google Venice (Feb 2012)• Google Panda (April 2012)• Google Penguin (May 2012)
  12. 12. According to Googles official blog post when Panda launched...“This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites – sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful. At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites- sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on.”
  13. 13. What do these updates mean?• Google is clamping down on sites that have: (a) a large quantity of low quality links (b) over-optimised keyword anchor text• Not tolerating black hat tactics• The changes lower the rank of low-quality sites and put higher quality sites near the top of search results
  14. 14. Impact in Numbers• 60% of sites – no effect on rankings• 30% of sites – drops on specific keywords but other keywords are still ranking high
  15. 15. How to break the cycle?• Not all content is good content• Push for quality• Utilise a varied link profile to promote your site
  16. 16. Final Tips• Get your link profile brand friendly – over reliance on non brand anchors = slippery slope• If possible - tie into Google Authorship Programme• Brand anchor text to protect yourself + good quality sites + building authority• Create a website with the user in mind
  17. 17. Search And Social – The Legal Perspective• UK companies can’t own twitter followers even if the account is branded as long as only one person is using it.• Issues of social media use off hours• Normally companies own what’s produced by employees during work hours – but freelancers are separate• Headlines can be copyrighted• Linking, in theory, can get your in legal trouble (TBT)• Hate sites can operate as long as they don’t profit• EU cookie law comes into effect today
  18. 18. How to Create an Online Brand through Search• Used the quote:“The consumer is not a moron; she is your wife”• Understand your customer and what they are interested in• Important not to look down on them!
  19. 19. • Originality• Learn by copying then start deploying your own style• Buy a Product > “Does”• Buy a Brand > “Says”• Stories are key to brands• We don’t like to think > Rely on shared knowledge• Meta description > Benefits instead of a feature• Create something of social meaning• Good way to understand a brand is by knowing what it stands against
  20. 20. • He organises #BrightonSEO.• A free SEO event in September.• Tickets to the last event sold out in less than 13 minutes•
  21. 21. Building An In-House SEO Team• Companies that do well with SEO employ PPC like ROI expectations and invest accordingly (with risk discount)• Branding is good for defensive SEO• Small experiments before big ones• Monthly contracts for agencies• PR key to success for many online brands (e.g. MoneySupermarket)• Need short, medium, long terms content/link strategies
  22. 22. Social Media Meets PR• “Social Media is still PR”• Just a different channel• Social is about relationships• Crucial: Fans and metrics
  23. 23. Reputation Management in a Digital Age
  24. 24. A brand isnt what you think it is – its what your customers think (and say it is)• Good examples - BP oil spill - Primark and ethical trading• Bad examples - Interflora on Valentines Day – didnt deal with tweets about missed deliveries
  25. 25. Reward the Positive• Acknowledge positive feedback• Keep a record of who they are• Dedicate a member of your team to network with the followers• Respond to any questions they have• Engage with followers
  26. 26. Dealing with the Negative• Uncover and respond to all mentions• Respond publicly so others can see• Never respond posing as a happy customer• Dont ignore negative press (it wont go away)
  27. 27. Brand Monitoring Tools• BrandsEye• Brandwatch• Trackur• Sprout Social• Free tools? Tweet Deck, Google Alerts, HootSuite, Social Mention
  28. 28. Brand Monitoring Dashboard
  29. 29. Is There a Place For Blackhat SEO In Modern Day SEO Campaigns?• We’re all Blackhats now: “While SEOs can provide clients with valuable services, some unethical SEOs have given the industry a black eye through their overly aggressive marketing efforts and their attempts to manipulate search engine results in unfair ways.”
  30. 30. Social, Mobile and Twitter• Interstices: It means the gap between things• If you want to understand mobile you need to really mind about the gaps
  31. 31. • The potency of gaps between things (now often filled with social media)• Bring those moments (like reading media) to a space that didn’t exist• Exploit Interstices, 3 Rules:1. Truly Mobile2. Simple3. Easy to Action
  32. 32. Anyone recognise this in themselves?
  33. 33. • Development of the web is accelerating – not slowing• Two lessons of what is changing:1. It is mobile first2) What used to be the gaps are nowbecoming the main event1. We are using our phones to bring connectivity in every conceivable space.
  34. 34. • Anyone feel like they cram more into their life now than they ever did before?• Anyone always use their phone while they are waiting for a coffee?• Anyone routinely find themselves walking down the street on their phone?• By putting mobile phones in people’s hands we have changed what people are able to fill their time with
  35. 35. Interstices 3 Rules:1) Truly Mobile• Design web for mobile too• Be genuinely and uniquely mobile• Massive shift towards mobile2) Simple• Text is Much quicker than email. Email > 2 days, Text > 4 minutes• The potency of simplicity• Text is > Mobile, Simple and Easy Action3) Easy to Action• Ease of transaction > Most important• Glances• People look at mobile an average of 150 times a day
  36. 36. General Twitter• Twitter Ads• Discovery Tab: Surfacing things that are adjacent to your interests• Mobile is point of Sale.• Create a hashtag (#) for a campaign/program - eg. Nike #makeitcount, X-Factor• It directs people to the program• Incredibly strong for holding a conversation together. eg. #prayformuamba• Journalists use Twitter handle• 60% of audience tweet and create content, 40% of people don’t• David Guetta
  37. 37. How Social Media & The Internet Are Changing The Media• Technology is changing rapidly – we don’t know the winner yet• Personal/Professional dilemmas exist for many people in the media• We don’t have a lot of control over social media, but no one else does either
  38. 38. Increasing Site Engagement
  39. 39. What is engagement and what works? · Things to keep people interested, content that sparks curiosity, encourages them to stay on your site · Levels and nature of engagement on your site need to be determined by KPIs and objectives · Engagement is only a metric: with this measure you cannot gauge the level of
  40. 40. Good Site Engagement· looks like a cluttered and off-putting site· offers a unique brand experience – engagement comes from the personality of the brand
  41. 41. Link Building 1/3• Scalable link building very tough in post- Penguin/Panda world• Buying links no longer a good idea• Creating massive content still a good idea• Know your and competitor’s link profiles• Outreach key• Label links as retractable• Build to what Google wants two years from now• Providing education materials one way to get links• PR increasingly key to media mentions/good quality links
  42. 42. Link Building 2/3• Debate about if Google is correlating anchor text with PPC value• Google may be monitoring those who’ve sold links• If you get a warning screenshot e-mails, but don’t send• Negative SEO can work – outsource to India or do a campaign badly (xrumer spam may be too obvious)• WHOIS fake link requests are happening• Links as part of partner contracts• Less than 20% of all links using exact match anchor text
  43. 43. Link Building 3/3• Variation key in link building – heavy on brand terms• Incentivise users/customers to build links for you• Ranking content based on 7 day likes/tweets/+1s• Competitions still work• Rel=author should be used• We have to think more like PRs• LSI keywords next to brand link can still be powerful
  44. 44. Marketing across Multiple Platforms• 1.2 billion Mobile web users• Don’t forget TV, non-digital space• Tablets > content consumption not creation• A form of business communication• Tablet KPI is focussed around engagement• PC/Desktop KPI is focussed around engagement and response• Smartphone KPI is focussed around response• Tailor message to device• Smart TVs, connective TVs > Not current from a commercial perspective
  45. 45. People will be accessing devices at different times
  46. 46. Delivering Insights from Social Media
  47. 47. Social Media Tips?· Use “their language” to help build “our language”· Social cannot stand alone and needs to be part of the entire marketing strategy
  48. 48. How to Measure Social Media?(1) Outreach (propensity to share and engage) - Klout: Influence
  49. 49. Psychology in Search• Psychological factors: • We trust the opinion of authorities • We like to spread the word • We want what others have • We are open to peer pressure > want to belong to the group • We can’t resist our kids
  50. 50. • Google > Own background > Making it personal• Google + is an identification management tool•• Google are making connections• Targeting and the way people think > Then make it personal• People do click on personalized results/rich snippet results
  51. 51. • Jesus was the first social marketer. “He had 12 followers, and one unfollowed him”
  52. 52. • Target a “Talker” > Shares content• Clients are not going to trust you if you say you’re good, but will do if others do• Target people to influence each other by getting them talking• Target people based on trust
  53. 53. Creating Effective Search Campaigns• Expectations, measure results, report, refine, start again• Make sure data is not just in one person’s head – have a back-up• Links are still about relationships• Use connectors to launch new campaign – special Press Release, pictures, go live URL, advance warning• Outsourcing works so long as there is a project manager• Peer review for dev. teams
  54. 54. Understanding the Role of Social in Search
  55. 55. Will link building die as a result of social signals in search?· It wont die but will decline· It is easy to manipulate search results using links, but doing the same with the social graph is much harder to do· “If you have social signals and no links, then it will look as unnatural as links with no social”
  56. 56. Key Points• Creating a brand is vital• Mobile is growing rapidly• Quality content is more important than ever• PRs and SEOs are increasingly operating in the same arena• Exact match anchor text and over optimised on-page content are on the way out• We’re all Blackhats now