Leading SEOs Discuss AMP, PWAs, URL Parameters, Featured Snippets, KPIs and More

This is a report from SMX East 2016. Search Marketing Expo (SMX) features speakers from industry-leading digital marketers and search engine representatives. Subscribe to the BCI Blog to get coverage of key sessions sent to your inbox.

Meet the SEOs is a key SMX session where digital marketers are able to ask four leading digital marketers any question they have. The panel, moderated by Search Engine Land Founder and Editor Danny Sullivan, features:

Duane Forrester, Hillary Glaser, Aleyda Solis, Michael King, Danny Sullivan
From left: Duane Forrester, Hillary Glaser, Aleyda Solis, Michael King, Danny Sullivan

What do you think about AMP, progressive loading web apps (PWAs), and web apps?

Forrester: I welcome our new PWA overlords. If Google wants it, Google will get it if it waits long enough for it. Google is doing this for a very good reason, because the average person will fail.

Glazer: If you are a newspaper or magazine or a site with a lot of content where the amount of content that is on your site is weighing down your site’s load time, AMP might be a quick fix. But if you rely on ads to produce revenue, AMP is not a good route for you. There are other ways you can go about decreasing your load time.


Do people need to have apps?

Glaser: It’s situational. We have a healthcare client who it really makes sense for. Their clients can book appointments through the app, for example, without even having to log in. That makes the app valuable.

Forrester: I don’t know that AMP is going to have a long life span. If you don’t have an app already up and running and your app is two years away, I would reconsider building the app. PWA is blindingly fast and looks like a regular website … it just might crush AMP and apps.

Do we need URL parameters?


King: I don’t think inherently they’re bad, but they can create bad situations.

When creating tables does the formatting style influence whether you get a Featured Snippet?

Forrester: It’s not about how you formatted it, but how much the search engine trusts you. To get a featured snippet, you must be highly trusted and serve up highly relevant content.

Will Google make featured snippets sponsored eventually?

Solis: I don’t think that’s realistic.

Glaser: I don’t think that’s going to happen.

(Read our coverage of the SMX East session How to Earn Featured Snippets.)

301s vs. 302s?

Unanimous: 301s.

(Read our guide on How to Implement a 301 Redirect.)

Should we be delivering ranking reports or not?

Glaser: Yes, if you can tie back to something.

Solis: You want to monitor it and see how you are vs. your competition, because it does have an effect on the ultimate goals: traffic, conversion, ROI, etc.

What are the top three KPIs you need to report to management?

Forrester: That needs to be decided before you take on the work. Whatever that business wants or needs, those are your KPIs. Could be traffic, sign-ups, revenue, time on site — find out from them. Ranking is not a KPI, but a tool.

Solis: For a migration, however, I would say ranking is a KPI. It depends on the project.

Should I interlink related but not duplicated sites that my company owns?

Sullivan interjects and answers the question: No — you should only do it if there’s some value. Don’t do it for a boost.

Forrester: Maybe combine the content and make a single, stronger site. If you interlink them, you risk appearing like a link network and getting in hot water. Pull your content together, put it on a single strong domain, build a business and move forward.

If you had a brand new site and no budget, what would you do?

Glaser: Invest in really good content. Update your meta data seasonally and learn how to understand user intent and behavior. Learn why people come from both Google and Bing and dig into Search Console. Update your content with that knowledge.

Forrester: If you don’t have a lot of money, you better have a lot of personality. You need to have a reason for people to engage with you, and that can be writing style, tone and voice. These will get you a social presence. There’s no end to it and virtually no cost.

King: This is what guest posting is actually for. When you write something on a highly trafficked site, it’s one of the quickest ways to get eyes and links on your own site. It’s a good idea when you’re starting something from scratch. Realistically, if you’re going after a competitive term, search is not what you want to target at first with no budget.

What are some of your favorite tools?

Forrester: Bing Webmaster Tools.

King: Moz’s Keyword Explorer, KeywordTool.io and Keyword Studio.

Solis: Keyword Finder and SEMRush.

Glaser: SEMRush, BrightEdge, Raven Tools, Google Keyword Planner. 

Bruce Clay, Inc. is a global digital marketing agency specializing in SEO services, SEM PPC management, content development and social media marketing. Looking for a partner to grow your online business presence? Let’s talk.

Kristi Kellogg is a journalist, news hound, professional copywriter, and social (media) butterfly. Currently, she is a senior SEO content writer for Conde Nast. Her articles appear in newspapers, magazines, across the Internet and in books such as "Content Marketing Strategies for Professionals" and "The Media Relations Guidebook." Formerly, she was the social media editor at Bruce Clay Inc.

See Kristi's author page for links to connect on social media.

Comments (7)
Filed under: SEO — Tags: , ,
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7 Replies to “Leading SEOs Discuss AMP, PWAs, URL Parameters, Featured Snippets, KPIs and More”

Good content about SEO with one of best in the industry. Will use these recommendations to improve my agency and client’s website.

Every time i read your article and some thing new and interested.
Thanks again Kristi.

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Riba aktar

I’ve never attended SMX but will definitely be checking out the next one. Looks like there is tons of great content and knowledge at these events.

Hii Kristi Kellogg,

Woww!!! Very inspired event from this one, there all persons king of SEO’s. I have a one question, which tool is better one and provided exact results from Keyword density?. I am hoping to check out the same high-grade content by you later on as well.

I’ve never attended SMX but will definitely be checking out the next one. Looks like there is tons of great content and knowledge at these events. Thanks for sharing Kristi this was very valuable. Look forward to reading more of your content shared on Twitter.

Thanks Matt! It’s definitely a conference worth attending :) Glad you found this useful. Cheers! Kristi


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