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SEO Newsletter | Vol 116 | August 21, 2013 This Month's News
  Feature
5 Internal Resources to Mine for SEO Content
Author: Kristi Kellogg

Sometimes solutions are closer than you realize — ideas for content are no exception. Your own company is a goldmine of resources when it comes to thinking up ideas for blog posts, articles, white papers, infographics and any other type of quality, compelling content that will earn rankings and boost search visibility. Discover:

  • What untapped data is housed in your customer service and accounting departments.
  • How to leverage content that your audience likes into more content your audience likes.
  • What other hidden mines may lie around your office.

Read More

  Back to Basics
Competitor Research – How to Beat Giants in the Search Results
Author: Paula Allen
 

What does it take to beat a giant? Sometimes trying to fight your way up the ranks of search results may feel like an impossible battle when giant sites above you simply will not budge. So who are those unbeatable websites among the top 10 competitors for your targeted keywords? Here we look at four types of SERP giants and what you can do to better compete:

  • Wikipedia
  • Ehow, EzineArticles, Yahoo! Answers, Wikihow, etc.
  • Brands
  • Authority .gov and .edu sites

Read More


  Hot Topic
Does the NSA's Activity Compromise Our NDAs?

Under the justification of anti-terrorism, the U.S. and British governments have engaged in collecting emails, online chats, browsing and search histories, and phone records of millions of individuals. A search tool allows any NSA analyst to search the database with only the broadest justification.

Leaked documents published by the Guardian and the Washington Post point to a mass surveillance effort codenamed PRISM conducted by the National Security Agency (NSA) since 2007 under then-freshly-passed Protect America Act.

Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and Apple are among the communication services named in leaked documents as having assisted in the government surveillance program. The implication here is that Facebook messages, Google chat and emails may be among the collected data.

There are real-world implications for the everyday citizen. A wife searches the web for info about pressure cookers around the same time that her husband is searching for backpacks. Shortly after, an anti-terrorism task force arrives in their home, investigating the couple as terrorists. From here we can assume that our online activity is monitored, this data is shared among populations of government employees, and that judgements are being made.

Businesses, then, must reevaluate common business practices in light of recent revelations:

  • By using Google and other Internet services, have we forfeited control of our data and our business's ability to maintain private agreements?
  • Does this affect our ability to enforce a non-disclosure agreement?
  • Has a reduced expectation of privacy affected the ability to do business on the Internet?
  Education Matters
Stay on Top of Internet Marketing Optimization Trends with Industry Reports
 

When it comes to internet marketing, strategies are constantly evolving   especially when it comes to SEO. It's no wonder, considering how often Google changes its algorithm (500 times a year according to Google Fellow Amit Singhal). With new technology, new trends and new factors comes new data, and with it, new insights. Thankfully, industry powerhouses like BCI, Moz, Experian and HubSpot produce lengthy reports that deliver that data, alongside insights and recommendations.

Delving into these industry reports is a great way to stay educated on the issues concerning your search engine optimization, digital marketing, Internet branding and social media efforts. The following reports yield high-value takeaways.

BCI's SEO Factors and Trends Midyear Report 2013

Spanning 20 pages, this annual report explores the factors and trends affecting SEO right now, midyear 2013. Bruce Clay and a team of top analysts explain the most important recent developments affecting search and provide forward-looking recommendations. This eye-opening report examines hot topics such as:

  • Linking penalties and decreasing reliance on links
  • Author identity as a trust signal
  • Content marketing and what to focus on
  • Local search changes and Google+ Local
  • Mobile search and responsive design
  • Rich snippets updates for increased visibility in SERPs
  • The Knowledge Graph, and much more.

Each of these trends and factors comes complete with recommendations from top BCI analysts for how webmasters and business owners can proceed in light of these changes.

Moz's The 2013 Local Search Ranking Factors

Aimed at helping "small business owners confused by Local Search, or those strapped for time, to prioritize their marketing efforts," The 2013 Local Search Ranking Factors Report focuses on actions business owners can take to optimize for Local traffic. Discover what factors marketers saw as the most important and what negative ranking factors they saw as most harmful, followed by individual insights from SEO and marketing managers.

Experian Market Service's The 2013 Digital Marketer

This report calls marketers to "embrace our ever-changing digital world" by making "sense of your increasingly complex relationship with your customers." The report pays close attention to multichannel marketing, having determined that "orchestrating thoughtful, meaningful and coordinated experiences as … customers move in and out of channels" is a strong tactic for marketing. The report hones in on mobile and social channels. Learn how to leverage your campaigns in these digital marketing arenas based on strong data collected throughout the year.

  Shuffles
 

Yahoo has snapped up yet another company. This time it's Lexity, a company that builds apps for small businesses. This was Yahoo's 20th acquisition since Marissa Mayer took over Yahoo last year.

This month, Facebook hired its first chief marketing officer. Gary Brigg, former senior vice president of marketing at Motorola, was selected as the man for the job. Brigg's illustrious career history also includes stints at eBay, Google and Paypal.

It has been an all-around rocky month at AOL. First, at the end of July, SVP of Marketing for Patch (AOL's national platform of hyperlocal news hubs that feed AOL homepages) Mark Josephson resigned. Then, in the conference call heard round the web, CEO Tim Armstrong announced that 300 of the 900 news communities would be shut down — and he also fired creative director Abel Lenz in front of 1,000 listeners because he took a picture during the call (Armstrong later apologized).

Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, is set to personally acquire The Washington Post Co.; the deal is slated to close by early October and will set Bezos back $250 million — cash.

  Shindigs
 

The SearchLove Conference will be held in San Diego, California, September 5-6. The focus will be on the future of search.

Cleveland will host Content Marketing World Conference from Sept 9-11.

Bruce Clay will hold the next session of the SEOToolSet Training Sept. 16-20 and newsletter readers are in for a treat. As a thank you for your loyalty to The SEO Newsletter, you can save $450 when you sign up for the standard and advanced sessions (they must be taken together). The discount code NEWS13 is good for any SEOToolSet Training throughout the rest of 2013. 

For those interested in search engine strategies, mark your calendars: the SES Conference and Expo descends upon San Francisco September 10-13, and again in Chicago November 4-7.

It's time for SMX East come October 1-3, to be held in New York, New York. All-day workshops will be held prior on Monday, September 30, including the popular one-day SEO workshop presented by Bruce Clay.

PubCon takes over Las Vegas, Nevada, October 21-25. What happens in Vegas won't stay in Vegas as the social media marketers in attendance will surely be tweeting every informative detail.

The agenda for SMX Milan has just been released. Search marketers will descend upon Italy for the destination conference November 7-8. On November 6, Bruce Clay will be on the scene to provide a one-day SEO workshop for SMX Milan attendees. Bruce Clay Europe is proud to be one of SMX Milan's founding sponsors.

Search Engine Land will present SMX Social Media Marketing in Las Vegas, Nevada November 20-21. The agenda includes sessions on blogging, content, social ads, advanced Facebook tactics, social editorial calendars, social tools, social videos and much more.

  Attaboys
 

LinkedIn saw a 59 percent jump in revenue this quarter — and that wasn't the only increase. The company also reported more than 238 million members as of August 1.

Hootsuite announced that it has secured $165 million in Series B funding. Hootsuite has seen huge growth in the past year; in March of 2012 the company was valued at $200 million, and as of May 2013, the company's value had risen to $500 million.

Twelve-year-old Ethan Duggan has developed four apps since learning to code last year. Among the apps is one called "The Lazy Husband," which relays automated compliments to wives from husbands who are too "lazy" to do so. He spent the summer between fifth and sixth grade learning to code on Codecademy. Duggan and his father Rick, a web developer for Zappos, were featured speakers at last week's South by Southwest conference in Las Vegas.

  Word on the Wire
 

Have you noticed the inclusion of "In-Depth Articles" now appearing in Google's SERP? Moz spotted testing of this feature in July, and this month, the feature went live. The In-Depth Article block, which appears at the end of the SERP, displays a few rich snippets for relevant articles from reputable publishers. Moz reports that In-Depth Articles are appearing in 3.5 percent of SERPs. The following are examples of queries that render In-Depth Articles: jobs; ancestry; smartphone; led; pregnancy; and wedding dresses.

Last week, Google announced that it will soon provide unique flight, reservation, package delivery information and more for each individual user by aggregating data from Gmail, Google Calendar and Google+. The user will simply have to type "what's my flight status," for example, to get relevant, personalized information.

The Rainmaker Institute, a marketing agency specializing in small law firms, is being sued by the law firm Seikaly & Stewart for $49,000 in SEO fees and punitive damages, calling into question whether or not SEOs are responsible for outcomes.

Facebook announced that they have updated the News Feed ranking algorithm. Now, organic stories that have garnered a lot of likes and comments "can reappear near the top of the News Feed." According to Facebook, this algorithm update increased the percent of stories Facebook users read from 57 to 70.

Pinterest introduced rich pins this month. Webmasters can now implement pins that include additional details, such as prices, availability, reviews or ingredients. There are three types of rich pins: product, recipe and movie.

August saw the debut of Firefox's fourth iteration, complete with a refreshed logo for 2013. Amid the new features is a Facebook share button that helps your browser get social.

Yelp continues to take a stand against illegitimate reviews. The company issued more "Consumer Alerts" that render on business listings that are caught "offering up cash, discounts, gift certificates or other incentives in exchange for reviews about this business." The alerts remain in place for 90 days.

Instagram debuted a new function for its 100 million shutterbugs: video. Users can now create 15 second videos and, in true Instagram fashion, apply filters for cinematic effects.

After a series of tweets that violently threatened journalists in the United Kingdom, 120,000 users signed an online petition calling for the addition of a "report abuse" button on the microblogging channel. The petition drew Twitter's attention, and the Twitter rules have since been updated to clarify that Twitter does not tolerate abusive behavior and there is now a "report" button on the iOS app and mobile web.


Top Blog Posts

The Good, the Bad, and the Mobile: SEO Tips for Your Mobile Site Right Now


4 Experts Weigh In After Google Calls Foul on ‘Optimized Anchor Text’ in Press Releases


Manual Penalty Actions Reported in Google Webmaster Tools



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