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Rand Fishkin | Founder & CEO
The Search World in 2018
What’s changed in how people search the web, and
how search engines ...
There’s a Lot of Misleading
Data Out There...
Google has 63% of US Searches?
Facebook sent
more traffic than
Google the last 3
years?
This seems
important…
But when the media amplifies these stories, the
headlines are immensely misleading 
How Do We Get Trustworthy
Data?
The data I trust most comes from clickstream
sources like Jumpshot:
It’s biased by the panel of browsers, but not by the w...
Breakdown of Searches
on Major Web
Properties
(May 2017)
Via Rand’s Blog
Core Google
Search
61.6%
Google Images
22.6%
YouTube
4.3%
Yahoo, 2.4%
Amazon, 2.3%
Bing, 2.2%
Facebook, 1....
Good News for SEO
Google’s Growth
2017 trended ~10-15% higher than 2016, not
including voice or Apple devices
Via Rand’s Blog
For every paid ad click on Google, there are 20
clicks to an organic result.
Via Google Trends
Via Google Trends
Bad News for SEO
95% of clicks, 10%
of marketing spend
5% of clicks, 90%
of marketing spend
Via GetResponse
2,510 marketers surveyed by GetResponse in 2017 said SEO
is only the 4th highest ROI channel they invest in
Via Geoffrey Weg
In Q3/4 2017, there were (seasonally) fewer clicks available for SEO
for perhaps the first time since Google’s launch
Via ...
What are the Web’s True
Top Traffic Referrers?
Via
Google.com
Oct 2016
Facebook.com
Reddit.com
YouTube.com
Imgur.com
Bing.com
Wikipedia.org
Gained/Lost
59.2%
6.5%
5.4%
4...
Via
Google
Facebook
Yahoo
Bing
Reddit
GoogleAd Services
Twitter
YouTube
Amazon
Traffic Referrer % of Referrals*Rank
Wikipe...
Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+
Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2%
Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3%
Yahoo 39.2% 1...
Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+
Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2%
Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3%
Yahoo 39.2% 1...
Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+
Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2%
Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3%
Yahoo 39.2% 1...
Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+
Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2%
Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3%
Yahoo 39.2% 1...
Mobile CTR
2.0% on Paid
40.9% on Organic
57.1% Don’t Click
2.8% on Paid
Desktop CTR
62.2% on Organic
35% Don’t Click
CTR on Google Mobile vs. Desktop
There may be more traffic opportunity from
desktop STILL due to higher CTR Source
The move from SERP ranking
to SERP Features
SERP Features Are Near-Universal
SERP Features Massively Impact CTR
Many Features Remove SEO Opportunity
But, in 2018, There’s
Also More Feature
Opportunity Than
Ever Before
You can do SEO
to show up here
And here
And here
Here And here Here too Also here Yup!
16 Features Every SEO Should Consider:
Videounits
SERP Feature Type How to Get In
“PeopleAlsoAsk”
FeaturedSnippet
Maps Box...
Books
RelatedSearches
Tweets
SearchSuggest
Sitelinks
SectionSitelinks
In-DepthArticles
Carousels/ListResults
Write a book,...
The move from results
to answers
Many Queries
Get No Clicks at
All
According to Moz’s
clickstream data, <25% of
searchers will click from a
result like thi...
This is so common that, according to Jumpshot data,
49% of searches results in 0 clicks!
Why Sacrifice Ad $$ for
Answers?
These are high CPC
ads, with high ROI
Why is Google hurting ad
CTR w/ these answers?!
Google’s willing to lose a lot of short-term revenue in
exchange for addictive search behavior
Answers  More Searches
The addiction of search is
powerful, i.e. “Google always
knows just what I mean!”
Ads Can Be Answers Too…
In Organic, Featured Snippets Are Google’s
Primary “Be the Answer” Bet
These Snippets Also Power Voice Search
Extracted, Card-Style Answers
are Also on the Rise
More on How to Become the Answer:
Via Dr. Pete (and more Dr. Pete)
The move from expressed to
implied intent.
Past: Query Terms Determined Results
Today: Google Knows What You Want Better
Than (& Before) You Do
Elements Google (Probably) Uses in
Predictive Intent:
Location & Prior Behavior of Users in That Location
DeviceAttributes...
Different Devices/People; Different Results
Seattle, WA Northampton, MA
It’s Not Just Search Suggestions;
It’s Rankings Too
In San Diego,
comics rule:
I stumbled across an article
mentioning this resort in
Japan early in my trip-
planning research
By searching for & clicking the site in Google, I
biased the engine to show me more results from
that domain in the future.
By the time I reached evaluation
stage, it was too late to convince me
to stay anywhere else…
If Google Becomes a Suggestion Engine,
Marketers Will Be Left With Two Choices:
Capture attention here Or compete, unaided...
But Rand, How Do I Rank
My Site in Google?
8 Broad Areas of Google’s Ranking Algorithm
(for classic, ten-blue-links style results):
Links
Quality of Host
Domain
Quer...
Does the text match what Google’s ML systems
calculate to be relevant, high-quality, & a match
for the searcher’s intent?
...
Editorially-given, anchor-text-rich, followed links
from high quality sources still matter to Google
(esp. in competitive ...
If Google sees high rates of pogo-sticking or
other signals that your page/site isn’t solving
search queries, they’ll like...
Using the searcher’s keywords intelligently on
your page still matters for rankings (and for CTR
in the results)
Keywords
...
Domains accrue signals of quality & value.
Powerful domains may give the pages they host
a boost in ranking ability.
Quali...
Google wants to see sites provide an easy-to-
use, intuitive experience on every device, at
every speed, without impedimen...
Speed & accessibility to crawlers still matters, and
Google still doesn’t handle non-text, or non-HTML-link
accessible pag...
The geography, device, search history, and
timing of a searcher’s query can all change
Google’s results significantly.
Per...
Rand Fishkin | Founder & CEO
Bit.ly/seoin2018
The Search & SEO World in 2018
The Search & SEO World in 2018
The Search & SEO World in 2018
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The Search & SEO World in 2018

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Rand's presentation covering data on where people search, how Google is changing results, and what's needed to rank in 2018

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The Search & SEO World in 2018

  1. Rand Fishkin | Founder & CEO The Search World in 2018 What’s changed in how people search the web, and how search engines serve results (and what that means for marketing)
  2. There’s a Lot of Misleading Data Out There...
  3. Google has 63% of US Searches?
  4. Facebook sent more traffic than Google the last 3 years?
  5. This seems important…
  6. But when the media amplifies these stories, the headlines are immensely misleading 
  7. How Do We Get Trustworthy Data?
  8. The data I trust most comes from clickstream sources like Jumpshot: It’s biased by the panel of browsers, but not by the websites that install a given tracker
  9. Breakdown of Searches on Major Web Properties (May 2017)
  10. Via Rand’s Blog Core Google Search 61.6% Google Images 22.6% YouTube 4.3% Yahoo, 2.4% Amazon, 2.3% Bing, 2.2% Facebook, 1.4% Google Maps, 1.3% Pinterest, 0.5% Twitter 0.4% Breakdown of Searches on Major Web Properties (Feb 2018)
  11. Good News for SEO
  12. Google’s Growth 2017 trended ~10-15% higher than 2016, not including voice or Apple devices
  13. Via Rand’s Blog For every paid ad click on Google, there are 20 clicks to an organic result.
  14. Via Google Trends
  15. Via Google Trends
  16. Bad News for SEO
  17. 95% of clicks, 10% of marketing spend 5% of clicks, 90% of marketing spend
  18. Via GetResponse 2,510 marketers surveyed by GetResponse in 2017 said SEO is only the 4th highest ROI channel they invest in
  19. Via Geoffrey Weg
  20. In Q3/4 2017, there were (seasonally) fewer clicks available for SEO for perhaps the first time since Google’s launch Via Rand’s Blog
  21. What are the Web’s True Top Traffic Referrers?
  22. Via Google.com Oct 2016 Facebook.com Reddit.com YouTube.com Imgur.com Bing.com Wikipedia.org Gained/Lost 59.2% 6.5% 5.4% 4.5% 2.2% 2.2% 1.4% Yahoo.com 6.0% +3.4% -1.3% -2.0% +0.3% -1.2% +1.5% -0.1% -1.7% Amazon.com 1.3% +0.1% Top Traffic Referrers Feb 2018 57.8% 5.2% 3.4% 4.8% 1.0% 3.7% 1.3% 4.3% 1.4%
  23. Via Google Facebook Yahoo Bing Reddit GoogleAd Services Twitter YouTube Amazon Traffic Referrer % of Referrals*Rank Wikipedia Gmail Comcast Microsoft Online Imgur MS Office DoubleClick Ebay AdServer DuckDuckGo Deloton 57.8% 5.2% 4.3% 3.7% 3.4% 2.7% 1.9% 4.8% 1.4% 1.3% 1.2% 2.3% 1.2% 1.0% 0.9% 0.9% 0.8% 0.8% 0.7% 0.6% #1 #2 #4 #5 #6 #7 #9 #3 #10 #11 #12 #8 #13 #14 #15 #16 #17 #18 #19 #20 *Methodology: Forthisdata,Jumpshotcombinedthe largest30trafficreferral sourcestositeson theweb (mobile+desktop),andisshowing thepercentof thosetop30combined(thus, thelongtailof referralsisn’trepresented here) *Biases: JumpshotdoesnotcollectdataoniOS devices,somobileisbiasedtoAndroidand desktopisbiasedtoPC.DataisforFeb.1- 28,2018,USonly.
  24. Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+ Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2% Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3% Yahoo 39.2% 15.8% 15.6% 14.0% 15.4% Reddit 75.2% 11.0% 7.2% 4.4% 2.2% Youtube 80.1% 7.2% 5.4% 4.1% 3.2% Not All Referrers Send Traffic Equally (data below from May 2017)
  25. Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+ Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2% Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3% Yahoo 39.2% 15.8% 15.6% 14.0% 15.4% Reddit 75.2% 11.0% 7.2% 4.4% 2.2% Youtube 80.1% 7.2% 5.4% 4.1% 3.2% Not All Referrers Send Traffic Equally (data below from May 2017) Google distributes traffic pretty evenly
  26. Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+ Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2% Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3% Yahoo 39.2% 15.8% 15.6% 14.0% 15.4% Reddit 75.2% 11.0% 7.2% 4.4% 2.2% Youtube 80.1% 7.2% 5.4% 4.1% 3.2% Not All Referrers Send Traffic Equally (data below from May 2017) Facebook is strongly biased to the top
  27. Top 10 11-100 101-1K 1K-10K 10K+ Google 22.2% 14.9% 18.0% 18.7% 26.2% Facebook 42.7% 17.7% 15.3% 12.9% 11.3% Yahoo 39.2% 15.8% 15.6% 14.0% 15.4% Reddit 75.2% 11.0% 7.2% 4.4% 2.2% Youtube 80.1% 7.2% 5.4% 4.1% 3.2% Not All Referrers Send Traffic Equally (data below from May 2017) Reddit & YouTube even more so
  28. Mobile CTR 2.0% on Paid 40.9% on Organic 57.1% Don’t Click
  29. 2.8% on Paid Desktop CTR 62.2% on Organic 35% Don’t Click
  30. CTR on Google Mobile vs. Desktop There may be more traffic opportunity from desktop STILL due to higher CTR Source
  31. The move from SERP ranking to SERP Features
  32. SERP Features Are Near-Universal
  33. SERP Features Massively Impact CTR
  34. Many Features Remove SEO Opportunity
  35. But, in 2018, There’s Also More Feature Opportunity Than Ever Before You can do SEO to show up here And here
  36. And here
  37. Here And here Here too Also here Yup!
  38. 16 Features Every SEO Should Consider: Videounits SERP Feature Type How to Get In “PeopleAlsoAsk” FeaturedSnippet Maps Box KnowledgePanel Top Stories(News) Images Apps Create & optimizeonYouTube(or, rarely,Vimeo) Branding– get searchedfor with/afterthe query Phrasing& positionof short answerin content Claim GMB, get links,earn citations,be nearby Earn brand association,use structuredmarkup Get in GoogleNews,earn links,title w/ KWs Relevant images,alt attributes,& directembeds KWs in title/description, get popularin app stores
  39. Books RelatedSearches Tweets SearchSuggest Sitelinks SectionSitelinks In-DepthArticles Carousels/ListResults Write a book,use KWs in the title,have an ISBN Be searched+foundcommonlyw/ the KWs Verifiedaccounts help,use KWs in tweets As w/ relatedsearches,also geo-sensitive Get links& visitsto severalpop pgs; use markup Grow popularsubsectionsw/ popularsubpages Authorlongerpiecesthat receiveattention/links Be listedalongsidecommon sets on the web 16 Features Every SEO Should Consider: SERP Feature Type How to Get In
  40. The move from results to answers
  41. Many Queries Get No Clicks at All According to Moz’s clickstream data, <25% of searchers will click from a result like this.
  42. This is so common that, according to Jumpshot data, 49% of searches results in 0 clicks!
  43. Why Sacrifice Ad $$ for Answers? These are high CPC ads, with high ROI Why is Google hurting ad CTR w/ these answers?!
  44. Google’s willing to lose a lot of short-term revenue in exchange for addictive search behavior
  45. Answers  More Searches The addiction of search is powerful, i.e. “Google always knows just what I mean!”
  46. Ads Can Be Answers Too…
  47. In Organic, Featured Snippets Are Google’s Primary “Be the Answer” Bet
  48. These Snippets Also Power Voice Search
  49. Extracted, Card-Style Answers are Also on the Rise
  50. More on How to Become the Answer: Via Dr. Pete (and more Dr. Pete)
  51. The move from expressed to implied intent.
  52. Past: Query Terms Determined Results
  53. Today: Google Knows What You Want Better Than (& Before) You Do
  54. Elements Google (Probably) Uses in Predictive Intent: Location & Prior Behavior of Users in That Location DeviceAttributes: Type, O/S, Speed, InstalledApps, etc Search,App, & Browser History Gmail Behavior (& possibly all keyboard behavior) Temporal Elements & Time-Based Patterns
  55. Different Devices/People; Different Results Seattle, WA Northampton, MA
  56. It’s Not Just Search Suggestions; It’s Rankings Too
  57. In San Diego, comics rule:
  58. I stumbled across an article mentioning this resort in Japan early in my trip- planning research
  59. By searching for & clicking the site in Google, I biased the engine to show me more results from that domain in the future.
  60. By the time I reached evaluation stage, it was too late to convince me to stay anywhere else…
  61. If Google Becomes a Suggestion Engine, Marketers Will Be Left With Two Choices: Capture attention here Or compete, unaided, here
  62. But Rand, How Do I Rank My Site in Google?
  63. 8 Broad Areas of Google’s Ranking Algorithm (for classic, ten-blue-links style results): Links Quality of Host Domain Query Satisfaction User Experience Personalization Technical & Crawl KeywordsContent
  64. Does the text match what Google’s ML systems calculate to be relevant, high-quality, & a match for the searcher’s intent? Content
  65. Editorially-given, anchor-text-rich, followed links from high quality sources still matter to Google (esp. in competitive results) Links
  66. If Google sees high rates of pogo-sticking or other signals that your page/site isn’t solving search queries, they’ll likely rank you lower Query Satisfaction Via WB Friday
  67. Using the searcher’s keywords intelligently on your page still matters for rankings (and for CTR in the results) Keywords Ring failed to rank until they changed their page title to include “video doorbell”
  68. Domains accrue signals of quality & value. Powerful domains may give the pages they host a boost in ranking ability. Quality of Host Domain Via OSE
  69. Google wants to see sites provide an easy-to- use, intuitive experience on every device, at every speed, without impediment. User Experience
  70. Speed & accessibility to crawlers still matters, and Google still doesn’t handle non-text, or non-HTML-link accessible pages well. Technical & Crawl
  71. The geography, device, search history, and timing of a searcher’s query can all change Google’s results significantly. Personalization
  72. Rand Fishkin | Founder & CEO Bit.ly/seoin2018

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