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Bruce Clay, Inc. Newsletter
  SEO Newsletter | Vol 131 | March 31, 2015 This Month's News

Oh, the Challenges SEO Tools Can Solve — Announcing SEOToolSet 6

Author: Paula Allen

The SEOToolSet® is a suite of organic optimization tools built by SEOs, for SEOs. We created these tools to help us do our jobs better and we hope, in turn, they can help you do your job better, too.

Today we’re launching SEOToolSet 6, the sixth generation of our tools. Our SEO software has always had a singular goal: Give SEOs the tools they need to increase a website’s visibility in search.

While there are many power tools in SEOToolSet 6, we could only spotlight a few here to get you acquainted with how it helps solve the challenges SEOs face every day. See how SEOToolSet helps search marketers:

  • Prove SEO progress with reports that monitor objective rankings
  • Figure out what’s “natural” among top-ranked competitors
  • Efficiently find missing meta tags, duplicate titles, and problems with canonical elements

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  Back to Basics

Power Hour with Bruce Clay & David Amerland: Video HOA Power Talk Lives Up to Its Name

Author: Kristi Kellogg

If you want to hear Bruce Clay's latest thoughts on what matters in search and social, this article is a must-read. Earlier this month, Bruce spent an hour talking forward-thinking SEO with semantic search author and marketing expert David Amerland on Social Media Today Power Talk, a digital marketing show.

The hour-long video chat inspired takeaway-roundups and comments. "He had so many quotes that, post-event, we were all quoting his talk in different ways. Each (quote) became its own conversation piece ━ it was kind of a micro-conversation, but when you have a guest like Bruce on, you have a lot of potential and opportunity there," said David Dietrich of Nod3x.

On the Bruce Clay, Inc. blog, you'll find highlights from the conversation regarding:

  • The evolution of SEO, including why 10 percent of people polled persist in saying it's dead
  • The necessity of planning your marketing strategy two to five years ahead
  • Practical tips on how to make cross-channel departments work together
  • The effect of social buzz on ranking

Read on to learn practical SEO tips and strategy to infuse your digital marketing.

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We're Hiring Top Search Marketing Talent


The name Bruce Clay is synonymous with SEO, and we are offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with the man himself and become a valuable member of our consulting team. We are on the hunt for talented, energetic and experienced marketing professionals to fill two positions in our main offices in Southern California. Interested candidates with at least four years of experience should apply through LinkedIn for the senior SEO analyst and senior SEM analyst positions.


Hot Topic


In an unprecedented move, Google announced a new ranking factor in advance and specified the exact date it will take effect. The search engine plans to implement mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal for all mobile searches worldwide beginning April 21. Sites should expect that search results will move either up or down.

Google clearly wants websites to be prepared. The search engine has released a string of features, including a tool for analyzing a site’s mobile-friendliness, in order to help webmasters make their sites work well on mobile devices. Websites should heed the warning and prepare for the mobile-friendly algo change.

Second, the announcement also stated that app indexing would start affecting search results effective as of that date (Feb. 26). Google search has started including information from apps that reside on the user’s search device (for signed-in users). In other words, if users have an app loaded on their phones, their mobile searches have a strong likelihood of including links to the app’s information.

To capture this SERP opportunity, app developers can help Google index links deep into their applications. App "deep linking," as it’s known, is basically a new frontier for SEO. Developers can learn more by reading Google’s app indexing guide as well as the liveblogs of two cutting-edge presentations on app deep linking given at SMX West earlier this month.


Education Matters


Learn from the Brightest Minds in Digital Marketing

Digital marketing conferences are a chief opportunity to learn SEO, PPC, content marketing and social media tactics and strategies from the experts of each discipline. In an industry that is constantly changing, it's especially important to keep on top of the newest trends and developments. If you get the chance to attend a conference, don't hesitate.

Digital marketing conferences bring together the brightest minds on the hottest topics with a goal of education. Earlier this month, thousands of digital marketers attended Search Marketing Expo (SMX) West to hear sessions led by Google's Gary Illyes, Bing's Duane Forrester, aimClear's Marty Weintraub, Stone Temple Consulting's Eric Enge, PushFire's Rae Hoffman, Experian's Bill Tancer and other digital marketing thought leaders.

Armed with press passes, Virginia Nussey and Kristi Kellogg documented many of those takeaways by liveblogging more than 20 SMX West sessions for publication on the Bruce Clay, Inc. blog. These liveblog posts cover sessions on critical digital marketing concepts including: app deep linking, structured data implementation, analytics hacks, cross-channel integration, mobile friendliness, conversion tactics, penalty prevention, the importance of online reviews and more. Learn the latest digital marketing trends and ideas as you read these thorough recaps here.

If you have conference attendance in your budget, use the Digital Marketing Conference Calendar to find the right conference. With more than 150 conferences throughout the year, across the globe, find the one for you.




Patrick Pichette announced via an SEC filing that he will be retiring from his position as Google’s chief financial officer. In his Google+ farewell post, Pichette explains that "working at Google is a privilege, nothing less," but he wants to spend more time with his family. Pichette came to Google in 2008; his exact retirement date has not been specified.

Amazon launched Amazon Home Services, a local service provider reviews competitor to Yelp and local search listing providers including those by Google and Bing.

Search engine Blekko announced acquisition by IBM Watson.

A deadline has been extended in Yahoo-Microsoft talks to renegotiate terms of their search partnership.

Education-focused online marketplace Online Marketing Institute was acquired by popexpert, a live, online classroom coaching platform. The move is intended to broaden popexpert's corporate training arm. OMI founder Aaron Kahlow joins popexpert as CEO.




Here is a roundup of Internet marketing conferences happening soon. For a schedule of events throughout 2015 across the globe, check out the Digital Marketing Conference Calendar brought to you by Bruce Clay, Inc.

Don’t miss SMX Advanced, which comes to Seattle, Washington, on June 2 and 3. It’s our favorite search conference each year, and the Bruce Clay, Inc. team will be there in style! As the official SEO training partner of Search Marketing Expo, Bruce Clay will be presenting the one-day SEO Training Workshop on June 4, so plan to stay one extra day. TIP: Newsletter subscribers can use the code SMXA15BRUCECLAY when signing up to save 10 percent on conference registration.

The eMetrics Summit San Francisco is happening March 29–April 2, including events for Predictive Analytics, Text Analytics and Affliate Management.

The MarTech conference takes place in San Francisco March 31 and April 1.

Pubcon Austin is set to return to Austin, Texas, on April 20.

The European Search Awards takes place in Berlin, Germany, on April 22. Bruce Clay Europe is sponsoring the Best SEO Campaign category, so be sure to say hello if you get to attend.

A regional digital marketing event, Digital Summit, comes to Atlanta, Georgia, on May 9 and 10.

The next SEOToolSet Training course is set for May 11–13 for Standard SEO training, May 14 and 15 for the Advanced class. If you take this renowned SEO training class, you get in-person instruction in a beautiful Southern California setting and a free subscription to use our latest tools, SEOToolSet 6. Find out more on our Training page.

The Social Tools Summit is scheduled for May 12 in Boston.

The Content Marketing Conference Las Vegas is set for May 12–14.

Copyblogger's content marketing summit Authority Rainmaker meets in Denver, Colorado, May 13–15.

To celebrate their five-year anniversary, Yoast is hosting a one-day YoastCon on May 27 in Nijmegen, Netherlands.

eMetrics Summit Chicago happens June 8–11 and includes events on Predictive Analytics for Business and for Manufacturing.

Social Media Today’s Social Shake-Up conference comes to Atlanta, Georgia, June 9 and 10.




On Feb. 26, the FCC approved net neutrality rules and redefined Internet service providers as public utilities. According to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, the rules will preserve a "fast, fair and open Internet" and prevent ISPs from controlling which sites get served fastest.

The FCC also voted to preempt state laws in Tennessee and North Carolina that prohibit local municipalities from expanding broadband service to neighboring communities. The landmark decision could have future implications for 19 states that have similar prohibitions.

Apple joined the Dow Jones Industrial Average effective March 18. The tech giant is taking AT&T's spot in the index, which is limited to 30 companies chosen by committee. Apple reported a profit of $18 billion last quarter, the highest of any public company in history.

Google is assisting Hollywood to raise girls' perception of computer science-related careers. Two Disney-ABC television shows, "Miles from Tomorrowland" and "The Fosters," feature young female characters who are science-minded. Google acts as consultant, advising the show creators on computer scientist personalities and even helping write code sequences that would work well in the TV-show format.


Word on the Wire


It’s official: Microsoft is sunsetting the Internet Explorer browser and getting ready to launch a new cross-platform browser codenamed Project Spartan.

Google is doing a major push to help local businesses show up in Google called Let’s Put Our Cities on the Map. The new service helps businesses check the accuracy of their data in Google My Business, and even offers those without a website a free year of website hosting to get them online.

A new feature in Google My Business gives businesses more control over images that show alongside their search and map results. For example, you can choose to show a company logo or business photo instead of a map thumbnail next to your SERP results.

Google paid $25 million to purchase the .app top-level domain. It’s the highest price any company has paid so far in ICANN’s auctions for various TLDs.

Google announced that doorway pages are now in the Google Search Quality team’s crosshairs.

Google is testing search ads for apps within Google Play. The initial text allows only existing Google search ad publishers to advertise to a limited group of users.

Google launched an Android app for AdWords, which is the first native app that lets advertisers monitor and manage their AdWords campaigns. A version for Apple iOS devices is in development.

Some Google AdWords data can now be viewed sooner, within three to six hours, including data on search terms, geographic performance and automatic placements.

A team of Google research scientists published a paper introducing a system that would rank pages based largely on the accuracy of their content (i.e., based on "facts, not links"), using a new quality metric called Knowledge-Based Trust.

The first Google shop opens in London this month. Shoppers can try out the full range of Android and Chrome products and experience Google products in unique, experiential ways, such as "flying" through any part of Google Earth.

Google launched its Android for Work program, which allows people with Android smartphones to create work profiles that isolate and protect work data separately from their personal data. Google is hoping this program will increase its mobile enterprise market share; the latest Mobility Index Report from Good Technology reveals that Android device activations dropped to 25 percent in Q4 2014, while Apple’s iOS market share grew to 73 percent.

In a mobile SEO session at SMX West, Google spokesman Gary Illyes revealed that the search algorithm’s upcoming mobile-friendly ranking factor will be applied per page, not per site, and run in real-time.

Google has been spotted trying out several new search engine results page (SERP) design elements. 1. A red "slow" label has shown up on some mobile search results (a chilling thought for non-mobile-friendly websites). 2. The review ratings in rich snippets below a SERP listing have shown up as green stars instead of orange, and Google has confirmed doing color testing. 3. Colored line separators (using the various Google logo colors inserted between results) must have passed the test, because Google’s rolling them out in mobile SERPs.

YouTube launched cards, a new way to add clickable overlays on a video. Cards is an evolution and eventual replacement of annotations, a feature many publishers currently use.

Meerkat, a Twitter-centric live video streaming app, was the talk of South by Southwest (SXSW), the music and culture festival that took place this month in Austin, Texas. Meerkat offers versions for iOS and, more recently, Android devices.

Twitter is ramping up its video capabilities and offerings. First, the company launched an embedded video widget that lets websites embed a Twitter-hosted video on their site. Twitter also confirmed that it acquired Periscope, a live-broadcast streaming app with user interaction, that is currently still in beta.

Twitter has been experimenting with a new homepage for logged out users that displays selected topic streams of tweets rather than just a static image. The goal is to entice the 500 million people who visit the site each month to sign up and join the 288 million active monthly users.

Facebook is making "topic data" available to select partners. The new service sifts activity from posts and conversations (except for Messenger) to provide anonymized, aggregate data related to a brand, product or other topic and give marketers a more comprehensive, clearer view of audience thinking, demographics, etc.

Facebook ads can now target expatriots. Advertisers can specify both the country of origin and the country of residence. The feature is currently available for expats from Brazil, Indonesia, China, South Africa and India.

Facebook’s F8 developers conference runs for two days instead of one this year, happening March 25 and 26. The company’s recent tremendous growth, stock rise, acquisitions (namely, What’sApp, Oculus and Instagram), apps and advertising opportunities have given the Facebook community a lot to talk about.

The Apple Watch was officially unveiled at the Apple Event on March 9, along with other upcoming products. Apple CEO Tim Cook previously predicted that the Apple Watch could be used in place of car keys, work as a credit card for making purchases, prompt the wearer to go for a walk if not getting enough exercise, and provide a platform for many new apps.

Snapchat’s Our Stories are generating millions of views for each individual snap. Our Stories are collections of event-based snaps submitted by users that remain viewable for 24 hours before disappearing.

Etsy, the popular online crafter’s marketplace, has filed for an IPO, hoping to raise from $100 million up to $300 million by going public.

Leading link-shortening service Bitly has announced Deep Links, a new feature that allows Bitly enterprise customers to create links that send mobile users to an appropriate in-app location rather than a web page.

If you use the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress, be sure to get the latest update, which fixes a security hole that could expose millions of non-updated sites to a Blind SQL injection.

A report released by examined the state of Internet connectivity around the world. The report found that 37.9 percent of the world’s population access the Internet at least once a year (the figure is 79.2 percent in developed countries and 29.8 percent in developing countries). This represents a 6.6 percent growth rate, which is slower than the adoption rate in previous years.

Hot Topics





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