What is SEM? • Search engine marke.ng, or SEM, is a form of Internet marke.ng that seeks to promote websites by increasing their visibility in search engine result pages (SERPs). According to the Search Engine Marke.ng Professional Organiza.on, SEM methods include: search engine op.miza.on (or SEO), paid placement, contextual adver.sing, and paid inclusion. wikipedia.com
What is SEO? • Search engine op.miza.on (SEO) is the process of improving the volume and quality of traﬃc to a web site from search engines via "natural" ("organic" or "algorithmic") search results. wikipedia.com Example SEM SEO
SEM & SEO Pre-‐requisites • SEM: Budget • SEO: Pa.ence! • Willingness to deal with ques.ons like: So, once we ﬁnish our SEO, my site will be #1 in Google right? Why isn’t my site listed in all the search engines yet???
Types of SEO Black Hat SEO The Dark Side of the ForceWhite Hat SEO Origins?
Black Hat SEO • Black hat SEO aempts to improve page rankings in ways that are disapproved of by the search engines, dilute Darth Vader image copyright Lucasfilm. the quality of content on the web or involve decep.on.
Black Hat SEO • Manipula.ng search engine results via: – Hidden Text – Meta Spam – Comment Spam – Content Scraping – Domain Spamming – Parasite Hos.ng – Page Cloaking – Link Spamming & Link Farming – Keyword Overloading – Duplica.ng Sites
Black Hat SEO: Hidden Text • Hidden Text: Tricking search engine bots into ranking your site higher by hiding keywords within the page. example *Spider Food
Black Hat SEO: Meta Spam • Meta Spam: Manipula.ng search engine results by one or more of the following techniques (among others): 1. Using Mul.ple Keyword Meta Tags <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-‐//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transi.onal//EN" "hp://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd"> <HTML> <HEAD> <TITLE>University of Missouri -‐ Kansas City – free tui.on</TITLE> <META name="keywords" content=“tui.on, fees, free, scholarship, waiver"> <META name="keywords" content=“umkc, university, college ..."> 2. Repea.ng Keywords within your meta tag <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-‐//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transi.onal//EN" "hp://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd"> <HTML> <HEAD> <TITLE></TITLE> <META name="keywords" content=“tui.on, fees, free, scholarship, waiver, tui.on, fees, pay, online, fees, free"> 3. Using too many characters within your meta keyword tag (>1000 characters including spaces) 4. Using misleading words or phrases/Using keywords that have nothing to do with any product or service your website oﬀers. <META name="keywords" content=“umkc, university, missouri, ku, jayhawks, kansas, metro">
Black Hat SEO: Comment Spam • Comment Spam: Adding un-‐related informa.on/marginally relevant informa.on (keywords + links) to a website’s commen.ng mechanism in an eﬀort to increase page rank on the external site prac.cing Black Hat SEO. Image sourced from publishing2.com
Black Hat SEO: Content Scraping • Content Scraping: Using bots/programs to ‘scrape’ content from various sites (rela.ng to a given keyword) with the inten.on of claiming it as an original ar.cle. • Why do people do it? • To develop a splog (spamblog) through which they feed ads • Gain page rank for their site Image sourced from publishing2.com
Black Hat SEO: Domain Spamming • Domain Spamming: Trying to own more than one of the ﬁrst page SERPs on diﬀerent domains for the same search term. • Some.mes known as ‘reputa.on management’ J • Based on the idea – ‘Why sele for being the ﬁrst link in the SERP when you can have all ten?’ • The Black Hat SEO may accomplish this via parasite hos.ng plus mul.ple ‘legi.mate’ looking sites (which may have diﬀerent looks, be on diﬀerent servers and have some iden.cal content and links) Image sourced from publishing2.com
Black Hat SEO: Parasite Hos.ng • Parasite Hos.ng: Onen used as part of Domain Spamming. Black Hat SEO’s will use hos.ng providers such as MySpace, Blogger and university hos.ng services to develop keyword targeted pages rela.ng to their sites. Exploits the search engine vulnerability of trusting older domains! Image sourced from seomoz.org
Black Hat SEO: Page Cloaking • Build web pages that show diﬀerent content to humans and search engine bots. • Used in bait and switch schemes. • Page Cloaking Defense: Why to cloak? Ø It allows the site admin to present a more visually appealing and well wrien site to actual users as opposed to a plain and keyword overloaded site to the search engine bots. Ø How does this work? – User Agent Info & IP based. Ø How Search Engines defend against this? Image sourced from seomoz.org
Black Hat SEO: Link Spamming • Seeks to exploit weaknesses in link-‐based algorithms such as Google’s PageRank algorithm. • Link based algorithms onen use the ‘it’s not who you know, it’s who knows you principle’ • This implies that >> the more sites that link to you, the more important your page is and (in theory) the higher your page rank. • Used in Link Farming • Doesn’t always work! • Can lead to your domain being banned by Google.
Black Hat SEO: Keyword Overloading • Keyword Density: Keyword density is a measure of the number of .mes your keyword appears on a page expressed as a percentage of the total word count of that page. • Keyword Overloading relates to having an abnormally high keyword density on your page. • Includes informa.on within meta, alt and .tle tags and page content.
Black Hat SEO: Duplica.ng Sites Example • XYZ company sells an.que ornaments under their domain www.xyzinc.com. • Wants to improve their ranking and is thinking of crea.ng a second domain/site to sell these ornaments. • Ethical/Unethical?
Black Hat SEO: Dangers • Can lead to revenue loss (for sites that have legi.mate rank) • Dilutes overall content quality on the web • Can be used for iden.ty then • Could get your site BANNED
White Hat SEO • Achieving great page rank via ethical SEO techniques and by following search engine guidelines. – Google Guidelines for submission. – MSN Guidelines for submission. – Yahoo Guidelines for submission.
White Hat SEO Techniques • Preface to White Hat SEO: We have no control of the user or the search engines. • What do we have control of? • Snippets/Site Descrip.on – Example: Search for ‘Fitness Center Kansas City’
White Hat SEO Techniques: Basics • Page Names • Flash usage • Text in images • Domain Names – picking the right one • Dis.nct page .tles & Ordering
White Hat SEO Techniques: Page Names • Page Names: Use relevant names when crea.ng pages. Ø about_umkc_informa.on_access.html is beer from an SEO standpoint than aboutus.html
White Hat SEO Techniques: Flash • Limit ﬂash usage on websites. • Avoid full-‐ﬂash websites. • Update: Google and Yahoo are working with Adobe to incorporate technology that will allow their bots to search swf ﬁles and retrieve both links and content.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Text in Image Files • DO NOT post text content in the form of image ﬁles. Your pages will likely never be indexed by the search engines.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Picking a good domain • SEO experts recommend picking domain names that contain a related keyword. – E.g. www.abcelectronics.com is beer than www.abc.com • Side Note: When picking domain names, be aware of how your domains may be interpreted/read: • Experts Exchange > www.expertsexchange.com • Mole Sta.on Nursery > www.molesta.onnursery.com
White Hat SEO Techniques: Dis.nct page .tles and ordering • Always give your pages meaningful .tles. – Remember to change <.tle>Un.tled Page 2</.tle> • Carefully choose keywords for inclusion in the .tle of your page. • Ordering is of importance in page .tles: len to right – <.tle>Kansas City’s best jewelry retailer</.tle> – <.tle>The best jewelry retailer in Kansas City</.tle> • Page .tles should be no more than 12 words long.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Meta Tags • Meta Descrip.on: • <meta name="Descrip.on" content="The University of Missouri-‐Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 14,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a three-‐part mission: visual and performing arts, health sciences, and urban aﬀairs. “> • How many words can I use in the meta descrip.on? – Somewhere in the 150 – 160 character range. • Meta Keywords: • <meta name="Keywords" content="UMKC,Campus,Missouri System,kansas city colleges,missouri colleges,missouri universi.es,colleges in kansas citycolleges in missouri,kansas city colleges,life sciences, theatre, music, arts & sciences, engineering, biology, pharmacy, den.stry, nursing, research, educa.on, business, law, medicine"> • Posi.oning of more important keywords • Inclusion of misspellings and synonyms • How many keywords should one use – popular opinion is at most 20
White Hat SEO Techniques: Content • Key to Content: Don’t write content for bots. • Pages should have a sprinkling of keywords. • Include keywords in the ﬁrst paragraph and bold them. • Make use of the H1 and H2 tags in conjunc.on with keywords. • Give relevant names to your images. • Be sure to include informa.on in the ALT tags for images. • Image tag lines.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Links & Naviga.on • When linking to sites/pages, help their ranking by including relevant keywords: – Click here for info on the power and light district – OK – Kansas City’s best entertainment venue is the power and light district. • Keep Naviga.on vanilla and avoid graphic links if possible. • Include footer naviga.on (example) • Link to other pages on your site in the content (if relevant). • Create a sitemap document for submission to the search engines.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Landing Pages • Don’t use home pages as landing pages, instead create a highly targeted landing page for your ad campaigns. • Gets the user to the info they want. • Can help reduce conversion drop-‐out. • Maximize return on PPC campaigns. • Can help avoid Home page dilu.on.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Site Submission • Which engines to submit to? • Directories • Local Lis.ng Sites
White Hat SEO Techniques: Site Submission • Which engines to submit to? – Google – Yahoo – MSN • Search Engine Rela.onship Chart
White Hat SEO Techniques: Site Submission • The DMOZ.org Open Directory • Uses an army of volunteers to catalog not bots.
White Hat SEO Techniques: Site Submission • Local Lis.ng Sites – Verizon Super Pages – Yahoo Yellow Pages – Google Local Business Center • Auto Repair example – Many many more…
White Hat SEO Techniques: Checking Progress & Maintenance • Backlinking via Google Tools • Monitor page rank via site: – example -‐ site:umkc • Reciprocal links • Add url via ‘add url’ – Example – ‘add url’ search on Google
White Hat SEO Techniques: Example of a Highly Op.mized Site • Let’s search for ‘Kansas City Web Development’ • Google Search • MSN Search • Yahoo Search • Dogpile Search
Key Item: Remember, it is content and users that drive Page Rank!