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SEO- Obstacles, Opportunities & the Future

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Critical Mass' Richard Deere presents SEO presents search engine optimization challenges, best practices and trends.

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SEO- Obstacles, Opportunities & the Future

  1. 1. SEO Obstacles, Opportunities and the Future 2010 Richard Deede
  2. 2. What is SEO? <ul><li>SEO is Search Engine Optimization </li></ul><ul><li>SEO is the process of improving how a website ranks in organic search results. </li></ul>
  3. 3. What is SEO? <ul><li>SEO is NOT Brain Surgery </li></ul>
  4. 4. What is SEO? Paid Organic
  5. 5. Why is SEO Important? <ul><li>Increasing organic rankings can have a tremendous impact on CTR to your site. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Position matters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Top 3 positions receive over 60% of user clicks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Higher ranking improves both visibility and “crowds out” competitors and negative brand listings </li></ul></ul>Position % of Clicks 1 42.10% 2 11.90% 3 8.50% 4 6.10% 5 4.90% 6 4.10% 7 3.40% 8 3.00% 9 2.80% 10 3.00%
  6. 6. How Do Search Engines Work? <ul><ul><li>Spider Crawling : Engines crawl the web using “search engine spiders” or “bots” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data Indexing : Engines take crawled data and store them into their databases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Query Processing : All relevant URLs are retrieved from the index when a search is performed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ranking Results : A ranking algorithm is applied on the above to determine which are most relevant to the query terms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google’s Page Rank : Using its knowledge of the vast link structure on the web as an indicator of an individual page's value. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. How Do Search Engines Determine Rankings? <ul><li>Search Engine Spiders look at dozens of different site characteristics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Page Titles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meta Tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Link Popularity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Site Coding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technical Aspects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Domain Name & Age </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Anatomy of an Organic Search Result Title Tag Meta Description
  9. 9. How Do We Improve Rankings? <ul><li>SEO Rankings Can Improve by doing the following: </li></ul><ul><li>Technical Optimization – We want to make sure that spiders can find, index and crawl the site quickly and easily. </li></ul><ul><li>Content Optimization – Once the spiders are on the site, we need to present the content in a meaningful manner, focusing on the correct keywords. </li></ul><ul><li>Offsite Optimization – After all on-page factors have been optimized, we aim to point both users and spiders to the site using our targeted keywords. </li></ul><ul><li>Skipping any one of these areas can result in poor SEO performance </li></ul>
  10. 10. Technical Factors
  11. 11. Technical Factors <ul><li>With a technical analysis , we want to ensure that search engines can access the site and all pages quickly and easily. </li></ul><ul><li>Looking for anything that could be a roadblock to discovering the site content. </li></ul><ul><li>Flash </li></ul><ul><li>JavaScript </li></ul><ul><li>Image Usage </li></ul><ul><li>Improper Redirects </li></ul><ul><li>Duplicate Content </li></ul><ul><li>Navigation Structure </li></ul><ul><li>etc.. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Technical Roadblocks – Unreadable Content <ul><li>This is the home page of Looks nice! </li></ul>
  13. 13. Technical Roadblocks – Unreadable Content <ul><li>The homepage of is made up almost entirely of images. Text within images cannot be read which means that image heavy sites may look empty to search engines. </li></ul>This page suffers from a lack of content in the eyes of the search engines. What information is this page trying to convey?
  14. 14. Content Factors
  15. 15. Content Optimization – Keyword Research <ul><li>Content is KING! </li></ul><ul><li>Keyword research is the first step. We determine what terms users are searching. </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords are determined using the follow methods </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Keyword Research Tools (Google Keyword Tool, WordTracker, Keyword Discovery) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analytics Data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Competitor Websites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Client Website </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Keywords are chosen based on their search volume, competitiveness, and relevancy to the site. </li></ul>
  16. 16. Content Issue – Unbranded Keywords <ul><li>Targeting the proper unbranded keywords is crucial to capturing the audience that is looking for what you offer but do not have a brand preference. </li></ul>This page for the Audi Q7 SUV is extremely minimal and void of any valuable unbranded keywords.
  17. 17. Optimized Content – Unbranded Keywords <ul><li>The simple use of a few properly placed unbranded keywords can make a large impact. </li></ul>Note the use of the word Sedan in key areas throughout the page. This page is ranking #4 on Google for the term Sedan making it the highest listing for any car manufacturer.
  18. 18. Content Optimization <ul><li>Keywords should be used in key areas on every page of the site in the following ways: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Title Tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meta Description & Meta Keyword Tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Page Headers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Page Content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Links </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Image Alt Attributes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>File Names (page & image) </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Link Development
  20. 20. Offsite Optimization – Link Building Once all on-site factors have been optimized, off-site optimization begins. This is the process of obtaining links from external sites pointing back to our web properties using the keywords we wish to target.
  21. 21. Offsite Optimization – Link Building Links are the foundation of the Google algorithm Constantly evolving Time Intensive Hugely beneficial Site A Site B Link Vote
  22. 22. The Future of Organic Search
  23. 23. Real-Time Search <ul><li>Web users want information faster and faster </li></ul><ul><li>Google now incorporating “real-time” data in search results </li></ul>
  24. 24. Mobile Search <ul><li>Handheld devices gaining more market share </li></ul><ul><li>Smart Phones will soon replace the PC as the primary computing platform </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile search algorithm differences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Location plays a larger role </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Popularity of location based Social Sites (Foursquare, Gowalla, Meetup, Facebook soon) </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Summary
  26. 26. Key Take Aways <ul><li>SEO is a combination of “science and art” </li></ul><ul><li>Neglect and Regret </li></ul><ul><li>Patience is a virtue </li></ul><ul><li>Stay Informed </li></ul>
  27. 27. Thank You