Chris Bennett, Founder and President of 97th Floor
Wes Funk, Director of Online Marketing, Omniture
This white paper addresses search engine optimization,
specifically, how to improve your rankings when you have a
large enterprise or corporate Web site. Learn how to take
some of the tips and tricks that would work for a smaller Web
site and leverage that for a larger corporate Web site for faster
results and trust with Google.
Specifically addressed will be:
On-page SEO, including
» Title Tags, Meta Data and URLs
» Internal Linking (helping the spiders find your site)
Off-page SEO, including (factors outside your site that affect it)
» Getting New Links
» Link Bait
» Social Media
Enterprise SEO: An Entirely Different Game
Keep these in mind if you have a large corporate Web site. (Particularly if the URL has some tenure
in the Web world):
» Large sites tend to have trust and authority. Opposed to a site just starting out, a corporate site that has
been around for a few years may already have hundreds or thousands of Web sites pointing to it and it’s
already trusted in Google.
» Large sites have thousands of pages; indexing can be difficult/tedious
» On-page SEO for large sites is about 80% of ranking equation for a large corporate site; changes to
existing pages have tremendous impact on your site’s traffic and overall exposure.
» New sites take several months to start ranking
» New/small sites have little authority; on-page SEO is about 20% of ranking equation
Google ranks Web pages, not Web sites—think Wikipedia (see graphic). Every important page is a
traffic generator in Google for its own specific keywords. With new sites, on-page SEO is about 20%
of the ranking equation; for trusted corporate sites, on-page SEO is about 80% of the equation
Google looks at two main things to narrow it down when assigning trust to a Web site:
1. The age of the domain. If things look stable, that builds trust
2. Links from other sites are considered votes of confidence
Title Tags, Meta Data and URLs
There are several things you can do to increase search engine optimization based on your title tags
and other descriptors on your site:
» Each page should have a unique title and Meta data, specific to the content on that page, featuring the
targeted words you want ranked.
» Write titles and meta data with keywords targeted for users. The Meta data is what shows up in your
Google search. A properly written Meta tag can get more traffic at the number two spot than a poorly
written title tag at the number two spot.
» When possible, each page should have the main keyword for that page in the URL, i.e.: …com/blue-
» When dynamic URLs have been created via a database, and are long and messy (with equals signs and
question marks, etc.), use code to extract specifics in order to properly construct them with unique Meta
data. If you have a PHP Linux-based Web site, you can use things like Mod Rewrite to create search-
engine friendly static URLs, which is not only just helpful for Google, but also for the end user because
it’s easier to remember a short, static URL. It’s also easy to link to a URL like that.
Remember: When changing URLs to follow these guidelines, use 301 (permanent) redirects rather
than 302 (temporary) redirects. A 301 will tell Google that the old URL has been updated and this
is the new URL that should be swapped out in your index. That will make sure that your indexing is
clean and the new URL gets indexed right away and you hopefully don’t lose any slip in rankings.
How long should title tags be?
Title tags should be short and to the point. You don’t want to stuff them with keywords. It’s best
to keep them to about 8-9 words; 4-5 words is even better if you can manage it. Try to keep it as
succinct and targeted as possible.
Businesses should put the name of their company in the title tag throughout their site. This is an
important practice for enterprise companies where talking about their brand is paramount. You want
to make sure that your brand stays in all those title tags. If someone types in a key industry term
looking for a product similar to yours and they’re familiar with your brand and they see your brand in
the title tag, that can bring trust and help that person find you better. Whereas, if they just read the
keywords, they might not know who you are and might not trust you.
Title Tags, Meta Data and URLs: Best Practices
These are samples of title tags for www.97thfloor.com:
1. The title tag is optimized for Utah Search Engine Optimization. The goal with this was to become known
regionally as an expert and own the Utah market.
2. In this page’s case, the goal was to rank for the Blog and nothing else other than to brand the blog in
association with the 97th floor.
3. The Hawaii page, like Utah’s in example 1, targets a specific region
4. The services page has a narrow focus. The title tag matches precisely what will be found on that page.
Marketers can actually lower their changes to rank by having the same key words on each page; put simply,
Google doesn’t know which page to serve in those cases, and the one that’s served may not be the one
that’s ideal for you.
5. A direct page linked to 97th floor and “what we do.”
6. A page existing for the specific purpose of encouraging a proposal request.
An Example with Room for Improvement
In the case of Surf Magazine, they have given themselves the same title tag throughout their site.
In addition, they missed an opportunity to put “transworldsurf” in the title tag, along with Surf
Magazine” for those who know them by that. In their case, Google doesn’t know which page to
serve and the best or optimal one may not be served.
Additionally, it appears their meta data is not adequate as Google is probably pulling footer copy
from the pages as seen in the description: “Resources Subscribe Subscriber Services…”, etc….
Looking at the third example of Surf Magazine, they miss another opportunity promoting the “surf
biz” page of their site. That description should be in the title tag. As it is, it blends in with all their
Web site Content: Unique Content is King
Google has helped create better quality content on the Web by making it more about the user as
opposed to the search engines. It’s not so much about how many times you mention your keyword,
where you place it or how many times it’s bolded. Some of those things still can help, as some
studies have shown, for instance making the difference of a ranking 3 vs. 4.
» Write content for your visitors (and the goals you have for them), not search engines
» Mention keywords within content when it makes sense
» Write for conversions. Have a clear call to action. Be descriptive, not just “click here”
» Don’t copy content for similar pages, changing only the product name. Each page should be as unique
Internal Links: Building an Infrastructure of Contextual Links
Internal links are one of the most important things a large corporate site can add to help SEO that
they don’t have already. Mentioning pages and linking to pages and creating that ‘spider web’ of
relevantly linked pages on your site.
» Think Wikipedia. If a topic is mentioned on one of their pages , and that topic has its own page devoted
to it, they always link to it.
» To find which pages are relevant for which keywords, conduct a Google search for: site:www.DOMAIN.
com “keyword phrase.” (Be sure to not have a space after the colon.) Go to those pages and link the
targeted word to the page that is optimized for it.
» If your site is hundreds of pages or more, you may need to set up sitemaps and indexes to help spiders
find your content.
(A good example is Linkedin.com: they have created an alphabetical site map. It also helps them stay
indexed in Google.)
» If you are having a hard time getting pages indexed, set up a Google Webmaster Central Account (www.
google.com/webmasters). This creates an XML feed that tells Google when pages are updated.
Note: large sites that have been around a long time and have an easy time getting indexed probably
don’t need an XML feed. If you use this, do it strategically; if you have a section of your site that has
a hard time being indexed, this might be an instance where this service is very useful.
You can also use advanced Web analytics, looking at your log files, to see which pages aren’t being
‘spidered’ by Google at all or those that are being spidered very lightly.
As mentioned above about Wikipedia, if a topic is important enough to have its own page on
their site they always link to it. In this example, you can see they link to 17 other sites in that one
paragraph. This makes it easy for Google to index all the pages and know what they’re relevant to
so they’ll rank high. This is one of the reasons Wikipedia shows up almost any time you do a search
In another example from 97th Floor’s Web site, if they want to rank better for SEO blog I will do the
“site:” search and put the “SEO Blog” in the quotes. You can see in the graphic that there are 43
pages on the 97th Floor site that have the phrase “SEO Blog” on them.
You want the correct page to highly rank for that keyword and all other mentions of it should link to
it establishing it for Google as the primary “SEO Blog” page for 97th Floor. This is an easy way to
improve rankings right away.
Blogs<Use images from slide 11>
Blogs are a valuable way to interact with and respond to your audience on a casual level. This builds
trust and brand loyalty. But don’t get caught in the trap of thinking, “If you build it, they will come.”
You must generate on-page SEO.
» Always keep it on your domain, preferably as a subfolder (ie: …com/blog)
» Create blogs to provide value for visitors and customers, not search engines
» Create layout that is similar to your site, with unique title tags, meta data, URLs and internal links
» Make it easy to subscribe via a reader and email
When a strong brand is linked, conversion rates and loyalty soar
» Google cares more about what others say about you than what you say about yourself
» Getting references and links from other sources on the net will increase your trust and rankings
» Links are about quantity and quality
Characteristics of Quality Links
» One-way links: links coming in without you linking back
» Anchor text: when the text is the actual link to your page. (Note: Text links which are your key terms are
» Contextual: links within the copy (they look the most natural). And the copy around it probably refers to
your site as well
» Links coming in to the linking page: how many links the page linking to you has linking to it
Other characteristics of a page that ranks high is one that has a lot of links to specific pages. As you
set up your site to rank for different terms, you should aim for your ranked pages not to always be your
home page. Each of your main product pages and core pages should be getting you targeted traffic
that should be turning into conversion and complete whatever goals you have for your Web site.
You need links to all of your sub pages that you want to rank, and that’s why you should be doing
the internal linking mentioned above, so you can build links within your site to those pages. You also
want other Web sites to reference those pages as that will give those pages more trust and you’ll end
up ranking higher.
To look at how many links are going to a site in Google, or page in a site, conduct this special query:
link: www.SiteName.com. Google does not return every link to that page—that would open up their
algorithm, which obviously, they don’t want to do. Google has said that the links they show are not
necessarily the good links; they may be showing links that don’t have anything to do with why you
rank—so Google is not always the best place to go look at your links.
Yahoo! and Yahoo! Site Explorer are very good. Go to Yahoo! and type in the “link:” command; (all
search engines will recognize that command). Using that command in Yahoo will show you almost
all your links and many times it will rank them in order of importance so the several links (depending
on the size of your site) will probably be the links that are helping you rank better.
Do Yahoo and Google rank the importance of a link similarly?
No, but more than it used to be. Yahoo typically values the quantity of links; get a lot of links, even
from unrelated places and they will help your rankings. (and you can still rely heavily on the meta tags).
Google is the opposite. You can have a page that is not very well optimized as far as content, title
tags, etc., but if it has a lot of quality links with the proper anchor text, it will rank in Google.
How and Where to Get Links
Tips for getting links that are based on your keywords, not just your brand:
» Start with trusted directories: Yahoo, BOTW.org, Business.com, and many more. Don’t just submit your
home page. If you have sub-pages on specific topics submit those to the directories.
» Get niche publications and organizations to link to you; search for industry related publications and see if
you can sign up.
» Press: take advantage of online press releases that allow links. Again, link to subpages when possible.
» Link “bait”: content so good it has to be linked to (breaking news, controversy, how-to, resource guides).
Submit your content to social news site.
» Sponsors or partners. When possible, be proactive and tell the proper sub-pages to link to.
When you partner with another brand, be candid on what page of your site they should link to and in
what ways. This lets you control what words the other sites use to link to you, and lets you automate
what could become a very powerful tool to increase search engine rankings.
Blogs and Social Media: leverage natural word-of-mouth influence
Help your off-page SEO by leveraging social media and social news and using blogs to create word-
of-mouth influence and buzz.
» Create content that is viral in nature, (e.g. resources, lists, studies, how-to’s, breaking news etc.) People
will link it to Digg and SumbleUpon. Millions of people use those sites, giving you the chance to
dramatically increase views by being featured on them.
» Make content sharable and easy to digest. That has a lot to do with how you lay out your site. For
content, use lists and break up paragraphs. Make it easy for someone to scan and digest quickly.
» Research social news sites as to what type of content typically “goes viral”
» Pay attention to social media (e.g. comments, feedback, reviews both on your site and the news site
where it was shared). It’s important to look (or more importantly, be) legitimate and sincere and not look
like it was purposefully meant to be a viral magnet—that turns people off.
As an example of the power of social media, 97th Floor had one client’s article that received over
30,000 links, and that alone drove over 200K unique visitors in a single 24-hour period, and millions
over one week’s time, via social media. Because of this, their ranking and trust went through the roof!
It cannot be stressed enough how much potential your Web site has. Just by learning how to
leverage it correctly, you can exponentially increase your traffic, rankings, exposure or sales within a
matter a months.
» Large brands must leverage power and trust already at their finger tips. If they do, they can dominate
» Effective SEO is still largely unused in large corporations. Implementing it can give a significant
» Don’t fear the unknown; test, test, test! Try different ideas
» Track those tactics that have positive affect and focus on those first
Omniture Search Strategy tip through SearchCenter
How does paid search strategy incorporate into organic search strategy? There are some new
features in the new release of Omniture SearchCenter that address this dynamic.
When Omniture users log into SearchCenter they will see the dashboard that they have set to be
their welcome dashboard. You’ll see the numbers and rates as consumers move through the funnel.
The first thing to do to tie in your organic key works is to navigate down to reporting in the left side
navigation bar. In the pull-down menu, click the “organic to paid” keyword report. View the list of
key words that are bringing in clicks. If you follow the categories from left to right in this chart, you’ll
see their paid “keyword status”, the associated “maximum cost per click”, the number of “natural
clicks” that keyword is pulling in, along with the other paid keyword data.
From that list you may find potential paid keywords that you currently have not paid for and be able
to organize the purchasing of them by clicking a little green button to the right of the word in the list.
Then, you can organize how you’ll manage that word (search engine, campaign, ad group). At that
point you’ll hit “ADD” and be given a screen that reviews what you’ve chosen and be able to make
any last changes if you choose, and dial in some of the finer points of that key work such as the max
cost per click, tags for the keyword, etc.
For questions about this webinar send emails to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (866) 923-8256.
If you would like to speak to an Omniture consultant to review how your website and marketing plan
can best utilize these principles of website SEO, please give us a at 1.866.923.8256