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Holistic SEO and Drupal

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Updated for Bay Area Drupal Camp (BADCamp X) - October 22nd, 2016

Holistic SEO is a term used to describe building sites in which content, marketing, technical SEO, performance, security, user experience, and much more come together to create an ideal url on the internet.

Many factors are calculated by each search engine's algorithm to rank websites. SEO is no longer a few tricks done on or off site. Proper SEO, one with a Holistic approach, should be factored into absolutely every aspect of business goals, content strategy, development, site building, theming, content creation, and content marketing.

For years, search engines and good SEO consultants told webmasters that creating good content is better than focusing on SEO trickery. With every Google update this becomes more and more relevant, as you can see results moved away from being specifically keyword focused, to results more defined by user intent, user location, and popularity. While some content disappears from the search engine results, others remain, and even thrive.

This presentation reviews:
* The most common search engine ranking factors, and how to keep up to date.
* An overview of Content strategy and how it can guide development.
* An overview of technical SEO best practices in Drupal

Learning Objectives & Outcomes:
Attendees will come away learning common search engine ranking factors, best practices for technical SEO using Drupal, and ideas on how to guide and empower their administrators to create the best content to achieve their goals.

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Holistic SEO and Drupal

  2. 2. Holistic SEO is a term used to describe development in which content, marketing, technical SEO, performance, security, user experience and user intent come together to create an ideal url on the internet, about a certain topic.
  3. 3. WHY TAKE A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO SEO? It defines a set of best practices that ultimately benefits the user. As search engine algorithms get more complex and intelligent, we won't be able to control or predict changes.
  5. 5. Once upon a time, we were able to create small pieces of keyword specific content... kr2fowdogudo999dvwdlkvnldkvn
  6. 6. And we were able to get it to rank on the search engines!
  7. 7. These days, one piece of holisticly created content can be returned for different worded search terms.
  8. 8.'s Guide to Hardwood Floor Finishes Is listed for the following search terms: hardwood floor finishes wood floor finish how to finish a hardwood floor wood floor finishing
  9. 9. It is a very well written article in an excellently architected site, from a domain with value. Nice big image Over 1000 words Great meta tags JSON-LD Markup Fast Mobile and more
  10. 10. HARDWOOD FLOOR FINISHES 1ST RESULT BASIC TYPES OF SEARCHES Navigational Informational Transactional Primarily Informational, but also has Transactional elements Lots of informative links, and a shopping box. We also have similar results for "wood floor finish"
  11. 11. Here's where it gets interesting: "how to finish a hardwood floor"
  12. 12. HOW TO FINISH A HARDWOOD FLOOR 8TH RESULT Informational Search Knowledge box and videos all are "How to" Knowledge box is from the 7th result, same site as our page Our page is a product guide, not a How to, but the information is still percieved as valuable.
  13. 13. WOOD FLOOR FINISHING 3RD RESULT Transactional Search Business listing showing local floor finishing companies Yelp business reviews, and Home advisor business listings Contractor websites The page in question does not fit in with Transactions, but is still listed!
  14. 14. One more example, showing how semantic Google is.
  15. 15. LITTLE BUB FIREPLACE Now, Google knows the piece of content I need, even if I get 2 of the 3 words wrong! "little" nor "fireplace" exist on the page, yet I get the result.
  16. 16. Lil BUB's Magical Yule LOG Video GOOGLE IS Topic based - Returns good content that is related, but not specific to the search term. Semantic - Understands synonyms, pluralities, misspellings, homonyms and more Focused on User Intent - What the user is trying to acheive by searching
  18. 18. ON MAY 24TH, 2016 GOOGLE REVEALED THAT USERS MAKE AT LEAST 2 TRILLION SEARCHES PER YEAR Google now handles at least 2 trillion searches per year - Danny Sullivan, Search Engine Land
  19. 19. HOW THAT BREAKS DOWN Searches per year: 2 trillion Searches per month: 167 billion Searches per day: 5.5 billion Searches per hour: 228 million Searches per minute: 3.8 million Searches per second: 63,000 least...
  20. 20. Rand Fishkin, Moz Founder
  21. 21. Which would put it closer to 3 Trillion searches a year!
  22. 22. Over half of those searches happen on smartphones. Nearly one third of all mobile searches on Google are related to location. Location-related mobile searches are growing 50% faster than mobile searches in general. More than half of all web traffic for the millions of website owners using Google Analytics now comes from smartphones and tablets. Google Execs Share 10 Incredible New Mobile Web Stats - Larry Kim, Inc.
  24. 24. Search engine ranking factors are on- and off-site items that search engines use to evaluate a web property's placement in the search results for a certain query.
  25. 25. SEARCH ENGINE RANKING FACTORS Each search engine has their own algorithm to how they weigh factors. On occasion, Google will publish factors. Pay attention! Schema markup ( ), ( ) Factors can be ranked differently for each and every search term! Mobilegeddon Page Speed HTTPS AMP'ed results in Search Reviews in Search Rich cards Separate Mobile Search Index
  26. 26. THERE ARE POSSIBLY 200 RANKING FACTORS Google’s 200 Ranking Factors: The Complete List - Backlinko Google's 200 Ranking Factors - Search Engine Journal Penguin is now part of our core algorithm - Google Webmaster Central Blog
  27. 27. ON MAR 23, 2016 GOOGLE'S ANDREY LIPATTSEVM STATED THAT LINKS, CONTENT AND RANKBRAIN ARE THE TOP THREE RANKING SIGNALS IN GOOGLE'S SEARCH ALGORITHM. Now we know: Here are Google's top 3 search ranking factors - Barry Schwartz, Search Engine Land
  28. 28. LINKS Quality of links Keywords in links Quantity
  29. 29. CONTENT Quality writing Keyword Research Freshness Images, Video, News related to content or vertical Does the content answer questions?
  30. 30. WHAT IS RANKBRAIN? RankBrain is a machine learning artificial intelligence system ... If RankBrain sees a word or phrase it isn’t familiar with, the machine can make a guess as to what words or phrases might have a similar meaning and filter the result accordingly, making it more effective at handling never- before-seen search queries. - Wikipedia
  31. 31. LEARN MORE ABOUT RANKBRAIN How to Use Google RankBrain in SEO FAQ: All About The New Google RankBrain Algorithm Artificial intelligence is changing SEO faster than you think Optimizing for RankBrain... Should We Do It? (Is It Even Possible?) SEO Trek: The Search for Google RankBrain* [New Data] Content Marketing and SEO The four pillars of the future of SEO
  32. 32. THOSE WHO MONITOR AND DECIPHER SEARCH ENGINE RANKING FACTORS Search Engine Land Searchmetrics Moz Backlinko
  33. 33. Searchmetrics Search Ranking Factors Infographic 2015
  34. 34. Searchmetrics separated the ranking factors into the following categories: Content User Experience Technical Backlinks Social
  35. 35. Search Engine Land - The Periodic Table Of SEO Success Factors
  36. 36. Search Engine Land separated the ranking factors into the following categories: Content - On Site Architecture HTML Trust - Off Site Links Personal Social
  37. 37. Search Engine Ranking Factors 2015 Expert Survey and Correlation Data "Every two years, Moz surveys the opinions of dozens of the world's brightest search marketers and runs correlation studies to better understand the workings of search engine algorithms."
  38. 38. ACCORDING TO BACKLINKO, THERE ARE OVER 200 SEARCH ENGINE RANKING FACTORS "Some are proven. Some are controversial. Others are SEO nerd speculation. But they’re all here." - Google’s 200 Ranking Factors: The Complete List by Brian Dean
  40. 40. THE CONTENT STRATEGY QUAD Content Components Substance Structure People Components Workflow Governance Brain Traffic Lands the Quad - March 2011
  41. 41. THE BASICS OF CONTENT STRATEGY Content-oriented Components Identify Goals and Substance - focuses on what content is required to successfully execute your core strategy. Determine Structure - focuses on how content is prioritized, organized, and accessed. Content Strategy Basics -
  42. 42. IDENTIFY GOALS AND SUBSTANCE Who are the users the client wants to visit the website? What content is the client going to be able to create and publish? Who are the client's competitors, and what content are they ranking for?
  43. 43. TOOLS FOR CONTENT CREATORS Google AdWords Keyword Planner Searchmetrics Essentials Moz Pro Keyword Explorer Readability Score
  44. 44. DETERMINE STRUCTURE Content Types and Entities Sitemap Menu Structure Functionality/Views
  45. 45. DRUPAL TOOLS Once you can define your Content Types and Entities, you can use these Drupal tools to connect them. can be used to render other entities inside your main entity can be used on top of reference fields to allow the user to add new, or select existing entities. , and are great modules to build reorderable, custom entities that reference other structured data entities can be used to bridge your entities fields and Metatag fields and JSON-LD Views Entity Reference Fields Inline Entity Form Paragraphs Entity Construction Kit (ECK) Token module
  46. 46. TECHNICAL SEO BEST PRACTICES IN DRUPAL Let's review the major ranking factors, and present ideas how we can implement in Drupal.
  47. 47. IS THE SITE EASILY CRAWLABLE? Well thought out menu Breadcrumbs with Friendly URLs from Markup XML Sitemap module Pathauto module
  48. 48. NO DUPLICATE CONTENT , set Canonical URL Redirect module Metatag module
  49. 49. DOES THE SITE WORK ON MOBILE? Make sure you use a responsive theme, and it passes the Google Mobile-Friendly Test
  50. 50. DOES THE SITE LOAD QUICKLY? So many different types of Caching available in Drupal. CDN like Responsive Images/Small image sizes in Image Presets Cloudflare
  51. 51. DOES THE SITE CONTAIN KEYWORDS IN THE URL? Use the to set friendly URLsPathauto module
  52. 52. IS THE SITE SECURE? Use HTTPS with an SSL certificate for all sites here on out. Keep core and all modules up to date Limit server access, and keep server up to date if not managed Require strong passwords - Require Strong Passwords module
  53. 53. DOES THE PAGE TITLE CONTAIN KEYWORDS? Properly set up html title in Metatag module
  54. 54. DOES THE META DESCRIPTION DESCRIBE THE PAGES? Add a "Teaser" field which can be used with the Token and Metatag modules for meta description and search results. Same goes for a Feature Image field, used for OG/Twitter Card Meta Images.
  55. 55. DOES THE SITE USE STRUCTURED DATA? markup in content & <div itemscope="" itemtype=""> <span itemprop="name">WAAY-TV</span> <span itemprop="broadcastDisplayName">ABC</span> <span itemprop="videoFormat">SD</span> <span itemprop="broadcastTimezone" content="-8:00">PST</span> <div itemprop="broadcastAffiliateOf" itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.o <span itemprop="name">ABC</span> </div> </div>
  56. 56. DOES THE SITE USE STRUCTURED DATA? View block/pane using a contextual filter JavaScript Object Notation for Linked Data (JSON-LD) <script type="application/ld+json"> </script> { "@context":"", "@type":"BroadcastService", "name":"WAAY-TV", "broadcastDisplayName":"ABC", "videoFormat":"SD", "broadcastTimezone": "-8:00", "broadcastAffiliateOf":{ "@type":"Organization", "name":"ABC" } }
  57. 57. PROPER USE OF HEADERS Proper, ordered use of h1, h2, h3 Remove h1 from WYSIWYG if set by template In the theme, remove h3 from block headers, to reserve for content use.
  59. 59. TIPS & TOOLS FOR DEVELOPERS Google Defines Best Practices Google Structured Data Testing Tool (Schema) Google Structured Data Markup Helper (Schema) Google PageSpeed Insights Google Mobile-Friendly Test Google Email Markup Tester Google Search Console Google Amp Test
  60. 60. GOOGLE SEARCH CONSOLE Has the following tools: View (and fix) Crawl Errors Fetch as Google robots.txt Tester Submit Sitemaps Configure URL Parameters
  61. 61. STAY UP TO DATE: Search Engine Land Search Engine Journal Searchmetrics Blog Moz Blog Google Webmasters
  62. 62. THE END CONTINUING THE CONVERSATION: Created by Jim Birch @thejimbirch Xeno Media, Inc.