The vibe at this month's SES conference demonstrated the need for more sophisticated tracking and usage of data in everyday marketing. And yes, this applies to both companies big and small, and to every channel you’re actively marketing within.
So, how do you turn regular old data into compelling stories about your online users, their needs and goals? Context. And asking the right questions.
Matt Bailey, author of “Internet Marketing: An Hour a Day” and founder of SiteLogic Marketing presented the “Introduction to Analytics” session at SES. In this article he answers questions about how businesses should approach analytics. Read More
The SEOToolSet is made up of about 12 tools, plus a few different views and variants. The data and reports generated by these tools can be used to inform SEO strategy and tactics in myriad ways. Toward the goal of improving overall on-site quality, we can examine the SEOToolSet's contribution to the SEO process in terms of:
1. Optimizing Meta data
2. Optimizing current page text content
3. Optimizing new page content
For each of these objectives, use the SEOToolSet to give you info to make educated decisions about strategy, focus and next steps. Here are the tools you can use and how to use them during each of these critical on-page SEO tasks.
Unnatural link warnings sent out by Google recently alerting webmasters to bad link profiles, have contained confusing mixed messages.
Mass notifications began in February 2012 when Google decided to become more vocal about linking schemes outside of their Webmaster Quality Guidelines. This message was reiterated by Matt Cutts at SMX Advanced in June 2012, saying “not to ignore” Google messages, and warning that failure to take action would probably result in further penalties.
However, it was the Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) warnings in July 2012 that have caused angst and confusion amongst webmasters. Read More
Survey Reveals Tactics, Tools and Where Time and Money Go
The results of the SEO Industry Survey, a comprehensive appraisal of Internet marketing practices, budgets and priorities, have been published.
The biennial temperature taking conducted and analyzed by SEOmoz surveyed nearly 6500 Internet marketers. The survey ran for about 7 weeks last spring. Respondents identified as independent consultants, in-house marketers and agency SEOs. More than 100 countries were represented.
Industry Survey Results
The survey's 53 questions revealed salaries, marketing budget and spend, the marketing mix and time spent on individual channels and tactics, preferred educational resources, tools and reporting.
A few highlights:
The top 5 services respondents report are in their service mix:
Link building 71%
Content marketing 71%
Social media and/or community management 70%
The top 5 tactics respondents reported their teams are spending time on:
Link building 14%
On-page optimization 11%
Social media marketing 10%
The top 5 tactics respondents reported they spent more than half their individual time on:
On-page optimization 11%
Link building 10%
Social media marketing 8%
Content marketing engagements that respondents reported using:
Internet marketing professionals are engaging multiple channels for clients. Businesses are choosing to integrate Internet marketing channels under one holistic umbrella instead of choosing single service providers.
SEO is reported to be the most practiced Internet marketing discipline, with nearly a quarter of respondents spending half their time on SEO. However, the specific SEO tasks that are being performed is called into question by the results of that same question. It shows 11% report on-page optimization and 10% report link building, while only 6% report content writing makes up the majority of their time. One analyst criticized this approach as pointing to an oversight regarding the vital role of content.
This data could, however, be a result of the division of work between technical SEO, such as on-page optimization and link building, and marketers specializing in content creation. One indicator that this may be the case is the data that illustrates where marketing teams are spending their time, showing that time spent on content writing and SEO aren't so disparate.
Bootstrappin' with the Best
If you read the Hot Topic in this month’s newsletter, you’re aware of some of the trends in the search industry. One statistic that stood out was many of the people surveyed said they have $0 to budget for Web marketing.
That’s right: zero dollars.
If you’re like many, you bootstrap your marketing efforts. You take a class here, watch a webinar there, and do a whole lot of self-teaching by “doing,” using your own site as a testing ground.
While this is sometimes a necessary way to market, where you gather your information from is key. Then, how you understand and apply that information is the next important step.
One way to ensure you’re on the cutting edge is to follow thought leaders in the industry. Anyone can put up a website or a blog and call themselves experts, but find out who has a share of the voice within the discipline you’re trying to learn.
It’s also important to remember that in Web marketing, there is no concrete or “blanket” way of doing something. And the reason why that concept is important is because you will run into competing ideas — even amongst the thought leaders — on how to perform a discipline.
So don’t be discouraged or overwhelmed if you encounter various approaches to Web marketing; it’s a lost cause to try and figure out “who” is “right.” Rather, what strategies can you pull from here and there to customize it to your business?
And even though there will be competing ideas, certain standards will always apply. When you’re in the process of learning about Web marketing, you will begin to see the acceptable practices within the disciplines emerge.
You want to be sure you understand these standards well before you seek out tips from others. That way, you can be sure the people you are learning from practice them, too. This is especially important when it comes to guidelines for digital marketing — those rules that when violated, can negatively impact your business.
A great place to start bootstrapping your Web marketing education is with books. When you learn from published authors — those published by established publishing houses — you can usually rest easy knowing that author has a share of voice in their space and is sharing something of value.
Books for the Self-Taught Marketer
That said, we’d like to share with you some of the books we know, love and trust to help you along in your Web marketing:
We also give some great resources on learning Web analytics in our feature story this month. So don’t miss that if you’re interested in measuring your return and finding missed opportunities.
Typically, we see people go through an iterative cycle when they are bootstrapping their Web marketing education. It often starts with a book and some reading on the Web, then practicing on their site. Then, SEO training and practicing on their site. And the cycle continues.
The good news is, if you have a bright, guiding light and the drive (and time) to learn and practice, you can market your site on a tight budget until you have the money to invest in professional resources.
Less than eight months on the job, GoDaddy CEO Warren Adelman steps down while GoDaddy investor Scott Wagner steps in as interim CEO.
In its first major acquisition, SEOmoz swoops up Twitter app Followerwonk along with its team. The free version of the app will still be available, and the Pro version is now rolled into SEOmoz Pro memberships.
Didit announces the acquisition of Inceptor, a provider of SEO, CSE management, and paid search and social media marketing. The acquisition expands services for existing clients of both Didit and Inceptor.
Facebook acquires Mac iOS developer Acrylic Software and its two employees in what seems like solely a talent acquisition. Acrylic Software is known for apps such as Pulp and Wallet.
Seven West Media has appointed the CEO of Yahoo!7 to be the group's chief operating officer. Rohan Lund was appointed to the new position by Seven West Media CEO Don Voelte after five years in Yahoo!7's CEO position.
Between now and December, cities around the world will be holding Usability Week events. Upcoming seminars, tutorials and networking events centered on tools and practical applications to improve site usability will be held in San Francisco, London, New York, Seattle and Las Vegas.
SEO copywriting workshops will be held in Sydney on September 20 and November 28. These half-day workshops teach principles for writing content to support SEO and conversion.
Majestic SEO launches two keyword functionalities, one of which used to be available by the search engines, but has since been taken away.
The Structured Data Dashboard by Google now allows webmasters to better understand what structured data Google knows about their site.
Applications for the 2013 Google RISE (Roots in Science and Engineering) awards is open. Google grants up to $25,000 to organizations supporting K-12 education in these fields.
A new Facebook ad type has been created specifically for those developers who are looking to promote their apps. The new mobile targeting will allow developers to promote app installations to the 543 million active Facebook mobile users. Over the past 30 days alone Facebook has sent people Google Play or the App Store 146 million times; these new ads are expected to grow those numbers.
In a move that would boost the tech company's lackluster social assets, rumors circulated this month about Apple investing in popular social network Twitter.
Twitter showed its political interest as the company threw its hat into the social analysis ring. The Twitter Political Index is a measurement of sentiment surrounding this year's presidential election that will be published daily.
Facebook faced criticism after an advertiser on the social network claimed 80 percent of clicks came from bots. The suspecting company, Limited Run, developed tracking software that showed bots made up the vast majority of ad clicks.
URL shortner and bookmarking tool bitly released Realtime, rt.ly, a real-time content discovery engine that ranks resultrs based on popularity and attention on social networks including Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Linkedin.
Twitter played a visible role in the Summer 2012 Olympics. Athletes extended their time in the public eye thanks to social media megaphones. One Twitter user who was not competing in the games but rather covering it for the media, Guy Adams, was also in the spotlight after he tweeted the email address of the president of NBC, the television network overseeing Olympics coverage. Twitter suspended Adams's account and later apologized due to apparent corporate conflicts of interest.
Social media marketers declared social aggregator Digg dead with a the launch of Digg version 4. The relaunch saw all users' historical data deleted, including submissions, comments, user profiles, links to Digg Web pages — essentially the entire site scrubbed of value.
Seven blue links may be the new norm for Google search results pages. The spike in 7-link SERPs may be tied to whether or not Sitelinks appear on listings as well as the occurrence of site clustering, multiple results from the same site.
Penalties on iAcquire, a victim of Google's Penguin punishment for unnatural link practices, have been lifted. The penalty, first levied in May, were removed after extensive efforts to demonstrate the abandonment of paid link strategies, and iAcquire says they are still doing more to clean up the link profile of their clients.
Due to Instagram’s rapid growth to over 80 million users, marketers are piling on board the social app. A recent study by social data & reporting company SimplyMeasured, shows that 40 percent of leading brands are active on Instagram.
Each month, our developers make improvements to SEOToolSet V5 to ensure users have a more efficient experience. The following updates were made this month.
Switched the ranking monitor to use the new Bing API as the old one is now defunct. We haven't seen a noticeable difference; the performance may be a little better.
Fixed a bug in our Page Analyzers where the detected encoding of a webpage from a Meta tag was incorrect.
Fixed a bug where the Keywords tool would timeout for large keyword lists. We're still testing, but things seem to be working for those affected.
Fixed ranking percentage output for non English/US users of the SEOToolSet in some of the tools.
Fix a back-end SQL bug for large project lists.
Added foreign engine support to the Research Summary. Now, the Research Summary will use whichever country is selected in your monitor configuration.
Cleaned up some of the Ranking Monitor error messages.
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