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The SEO Revolution Will Not Be Televised

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Rand Fishkin's presentation from SMX Munich on the major changes to search and SEO.

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The SEO Revolution Will Not Be Televised

  1. Rand Fishkin, Wizard of Moz | @randfish | The SEO Revolution Will Not Be Televised
  2. Be Kindly Advised: This presentation features an above-average quantity of Rand’s personal opinion & perception
  3. This Presentation Is Online Here:
  4. Major Shifts in Search (of which most folks are aware) 5
  5. 1) Far More Diversity of Result Types Only 15% of SERPs are “10 Blue Links”
  6. Local Results Above Organic + Map
  7. Local Carousel + Map
  8. Sitelinks + Knowledge Graph + News
  9. AdWords Top + Sitelinks + Knowledge Graph + Recent Google+ Posts + Also Search For
  10. Recipe images via Schema markup + mini- sitelinks + video snippets + ratings, calories, & reviews rich snippets
  11. Mini-sitelinks + images box + knowledge graph + video snippets
  12. Ignorance via Google Suggest (also embedded Q+A links)
  13. 2) Cannibalization of Traffic-Referring Queries by Google Themselves
  14. If I were the NCAA, I don’t think I could stomach paying Google to appear in these results.
  15. This is even worse.
  16. And it’s not just happening for popular queries.
  17. It’s even happening to your friends 
  18. 3) Sacrificing Transparency Under the Guise of Privacy Via Not Provided Count
  19. G+ = Author Photos & Knowledge Graph Posts 1 2
  20. G+ Gives You Follower Counts, a Follow Button, More Posts from Your Account, & Can Show Up in SERPS 3 54 6 7
  21. If You’re In Someone’s Circles, All You Have to Do is Mention Their Search Phrase to be on Page 1 8
  22. Even for Incredibly Competitive Queries 8
  23. 5) The Long-Awaited Dominance of & Bias Toward Brands in Search Has Arrived Via Mozcast 27% Growth in 24 Months
  24. Brand Gets You Rankings, & It Gets You Out of Trouble. Via Techcrunch
  25. Subtle Changes to Search (that not everyone might know) 4
  26. 1) Content Growth Exceeding Query Growth Search stats via Comscore and AJ Kohn on G+;
  27. 2013 Actually Had 11 Months of YoY Growth Search stats via Comscore and AJ Kohn on G+;
  28. Content May Go the Way of Advertising Ad cycle & content graphic via Rand’s Blog
  29. Standing Out May Become Much, Much Harder Ad cycle & content graphic via Rand’s Blog
  30. 2) On-Page’s Impact Growing After Years Of Shrinking Instead of carefully keyword-matched content from sites like eHow & Journeymart, Hummingbird has helped Google “intent-match” and return more valuable (though less classically “SEO’d”) pages
  31. 3) A New Philosophy/PR Approach to Spam 1997-2011: Spam is our problem 2012-2014: Spam is your problem
  32. 4) Introduction of Machine-Learning to Search Quality Algorithms Quora thread with Edmond Lau’s response here
  33. A Brief Look at Machine Learning
  34. A Brief Look at Machine Learning Search quality filters Sites G don’t like Any & every signal New Algo Signals that correlate w/ bad sites
  35. Ways Our Industry is Taking These Changes 3
  36. Anger, Distrust, Resentment, & Retaliation Young fools. Only now do you see the folly of retweeting “sick burns” on Matt Cutts as your primary mode of defense.
  37. Modification of Strategic Approaches Many of Dr. Pete’s weekends were burned to bring us this information.
  38. Reject and (or) Ignore Hey, if I want to buy some links, you’ll shut up and sell me some $%&# links.
  39. Landscape Upheavals for SEOs Themselves 2
  40. The Evolution of Technical SEO
  41. What’s insane is that this same pattern holds true for every facet of SEO, not just the technical side. Whoa.
  42. LinkedIn Members w/ “SEO” in their Job Title LinkedIn Members w/ “SEO” in their Job Description Via LinkedIn and Moz’s 2013 Industry Survey 1997-2010: “I’m an SEO”
  43. Via LinkedIn and Moz’s 2013 Industry Survey 2011-Present: “SEO is a part of my job.”
  44. Quiet Revolution 1
  45. New Spam Tactics + Brand Biasing + Broader Algorithms = Decline of Classic SEO (aka keywords & links)
  46. Search Growth Leveling Off + Google Taking Many Queries for Themselves + Increasing Competition = A Need to Find New / More Creative Opportunities
  47. Increasing Complexity + Perception of Accessibility = Continued Lack of Respect, Influence, and Resources
  48. 3 of My Big Takeaways
  49. We Need to Create Better Expectations (or our teams/clients will continue to demand the impossible) #1
  50. We Must Educate Clients, Managers, and Teams About What Modern SEO Entails
  51. About the New Timeframes for SEO Success Via Case Study: How Long It Takes to See Organic Results
  52. AKA “The SEO Slog” Via Surviving the SEO Slog
  53. And about the Reality of SEO’s New Risks Penalty? Cannibalization? Drop in Demand? Technical Issue? Competition? New SERP Types?
  54. It’s Not Just About What’s Expected of SEOs, But What We Expect from Our Teams & Clients If SEOs are expected to have broad marketing knowledge, other teams need to have SEO knowledge, too.
  55. Early Adopters of New Channels or Tactics Will Earn Outsize Returns (more than ever, it’s paying off to be on the bleeding edge) #2
  56. TripAdvisor Got a Pass b/c There Was No Panda Tripadvisor in 2011 featuring virtually no unique content
  57. Many Got a Pass b/c There Was No Penguin Don’t worry… I’m not going to tell on you 
  58. Infographic Peddlers?
  59. Guest Blog Abusers? How Geraldine replies to guest post requests.
  60. Getty Images Will Get a Pass Because They’re a Brand and They’re Early Via Rae Hoffman’s SMX “Meet the Search Engines” Takeaways
  61. Earning an Engaged Following on Google+ Today May Be Hard
  62. But So Was Earning a Following on Facebook
  63. Instagram? Pinterest? Secret?
  64. Those Who Aren’t Building Brands Will Struggle Mightily in the Years Ahead (The “find & abuse exploits” era of SEO is ending. The only logical strategy today is to be so good that Google looks bad taking you out) #3
  65. Link Building ≠ Brand Building
  66. Keyword Targeting ≠ Brand Building
  67. Short-Term Rankings ≠ Brand Building Official airport website Major brand Major brand Major brand Major brand
  68. You’re Probably Sick of Hearing About Content Marketing
  69. You’re Probably Sick of Hearing About Social Media Marketing
  70. You’re Probably Sick of Hearing About Earning Press
  71. You’re Probably Sick of Hearing About “Going Viral”
  72. Guess What?
  73. Content Marketing Social Media Marketing Earning Press Going “Viral” = Brand Building
  74. Google made SEOs into brand builders by making the algorithm love brands.
  75. Welcome to the Revolution
  76. Rand Fishkin, Wizard of Moz | @randfish |
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Rand Fishkin's presentation from SMX Munich on the major changes to search and SEO.


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