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Best-Kept Secrets for Search Marketing Success

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  1. Best-Kept Secrets for Search Marketing Success Stephan Spencer, Founder & President, Netconcepts

  2. Advanced SEO: Part Art, Part Science • Stay tuned for the tools and tactics that most search agencies won’t reveal… • These tools and tactics will be broken into three major categories • Technical Optimization • Content Optimization • Link Building

  3. Technical Optimization

  4. Grouped Google Results • Science: • Finding the true position of an indented result by appending &num=9 to the URL of the Google SERP, then &num=8 etc. • http://searchengineland.com/070705-123736.php • Art: • Knocking out your competitor’s indented second listing

  5. This isn’t really #3

  6. Nope, not yet

  7. Gone! It’s true position was #9

  8. SEO the title of #12 to bump it up to page 1 – it will be grouped to #2. Then link to #11 and bump it up to page 1 to knock #4 to page 2

  9. Indexation • Science: • Essential tools: Yahoo Site Explorer, Netconcepts URL Checker, Netconcepts Product Page Checker (www.netconcepts.com/productcheck) • Set Google preferences to “English Only” to get a more realistic number, minus pages not crawled • XML Sitemaps generators • Art: • Figuring out the main indexation threshold for your level of PageRank/authority

  10. Results estimate decreased by 2/3rds

  11. Flowing PageRank • Science: • Using rel=nofollow on low-value internal links • SEOChat PageRank Search tool • SEOChat PageRank Lookup tool • SEO for Firefox tool • Art: • Knowing which of your pages to nofollow • Iterative testing

  12. 301 Redirects • Science: • When moving sites • For canonicalization • “Conditional” redirects? • Art: • When to use 301 and when to use 404 or 302

  13. Cloaking • Science: • Viewed cloaked content with Google Translate and translate it from English to English • http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=en&u=URLGOESHERE&sa=X&oi=translate&resnum=9&ct=result • Art: • Good cloaking vs bad cloaking • For bots only, drop tracking tags and other superfluous parameters from the URLs of your links • Use “user agent” detection and don’t “noarchive” the pages to obscure what you’re doing • http://searchengineland.com/070301-065358.php

  14. Supplemental Index • Science: • Figuring out which pages are and are not in “Supplemental hell” • http://www.mapelli.info/tools/supplemental-index-ratio-calculator/ • site:www.xyz.com -allinurl:www.xyz.com • Popping pages out of supplemental with robots.txt disallow, rel=nofollow, internal linking, link building

  15. Duplicate Content • Science: • Scanning for duplicate content • Blocking duplicate content without blackholing the PageRank (i.e. disallowing with rel=nofollow) • If using tracking parameters in URLs, use 301 redirects or JavaScript • http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/444/SEO-The-Duplicate-Content-Penalty/ • Art: • Augment and/or revise duplicate content with APIs, unique titles/metadata,

  16. CSS • Science: • Reordering content above navigation • Image replacement technique • Progressive enhancement for Flash & AJAX • http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/251/SEO-Harness-the-Power-of-CSS/ • Art: • Design worthy of CSS Zen Garden

  17. Content Optimization

  18. Keyword Research • Science: • Mastering tools such as KeywordDiscovery, Google Suggest, Spyfu,WordTracker, Google Trends, Googspy, SEOSleuth, Yahoosearchranking.com • Art: • Working in misspellings without looking stupid • Thinking like a thesaurus - finding related words that machines can’t

  19. Keyword Density/Prominence • Science: • Ranks.nl • Art: • Increasing keyword density and prominence in a way that looks natural to the engines and reads well

  20. “Thin Slicing” • Science: • Mass edit admin • Mechanical Turk • Art: • Separating the wheat from the chaff

  21. Link Building

  22. Reverse Engineer Competitors • Science: • Yahoo Site Explorer • link: on Google & on Google Blog Search • Backlink Analyzer or Neat-o tool • Art: • Negotiating links from the same sites • Outing competitors’ dodgy link schemes

  23. High-Value Link Targets • Science: • Build spiders to find sites with super high PageRank, 1 click away from Google, .edu or .gov, high Alexa ranked • Avoiding situations that erode the value (e.g. reciprocal, in footer, site-wide, adjacent to paid links, too many links on page) • Use tools like SEOMoz Page Strength tool, SEO for Firefox, SEO-Links Firefox extension • Art: • Identifying sites with a propensity to give link love (e.g. acknowledging patrons/sponsors) • Crafting approaches & incentives • Buy them

  24. Mining Your Own Links • Science: • Locating inbound links with poor anchor text with BLA or Neat-o • Art: • Negotiating with these linkers to change the anchor text. Pull some favors with friends who link to you. It helps to be a blogger when reaching out to other bloggers.

  25. Wikipedia • Science: • Wikiscanner • Article monitoring (e.g. trackengine, changenotes, urlywarning, changedetect, watch function) • Building up a long & virtuous contribution history • Flowing pagerank internally with Disambiguation pages, Redirects, Categories • Art: • Negotiating with an article’s “owner” • Making friends who will back you up in AfDs • Earning Barnstar awards & adminship status

  26. Digg • Science: • Stripping away all commercial links during the initial Digg swarm • Friending popular Diggers • Timing your presence on the Digg front page for daylight hours • Art: • Crafting a killer title • Getting a powerful Digger to submit your story

  27. YouTube • Science: • Proper formatting • Tagging • Title and description • Channels • Art: • Entertainment value • Finding that viral hook

  28. MySpace • Science: • Configuration of your profile and page (e.g. profile type) • Establishing critical mass with #s of Friends by targeting bands • Art: • Getting your brand in the URL • Creating a viral MySpace avatar, comment graphic, layout etc. • Having a profile layout that differentiates you without killing usability

  29. Flickr • Science: • Tagging • Title and description • Albums / photosets • Creative Commons licensing • Commenting (note: links in comments no longer pass juice) • Art: • Photo quality • Viral hook

  30. Blogs • Science: • Knowing which blogs pass PageRank to commenters (e.g. Mark Cuban’s) • Decoupling your blog’s title tags from the post titles (e.g. “SEO Title Tag” WordPress plugin) • Using “Sticky” posts to improve keyword prominence on your blog • Art: • Courting bloggers • Commenting in ways that add to the conversation so they get approved and stay

  31. More SEO Tools • For link analysis and PageRank • TouchGraph • Live PageRank • WebmasterEyes • Google Webmaster Central • Thumbshots Ranking tool • SEOpen

  32. More SEO Tools • Technical optimization • User Agent Switcher • SwitchProxy • Scrutinizer • Copyscape • Poodle Predictor • Xenu Link Sleuth • Robot Replay • CrazyEgg • What’s That Site Running • Wayback Machine

  33. More SEO Tools • Other reporting • Alexa • DigitalPoint Keyword Rankings • Urltrends • Hitwise ($$) • List and links at • www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/368/SEO-Toolkit/ • www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/176/SEO:-Tools-for-Link-Building/

  34. Q&A! • For an ebook on Google power searching, SEO checklists & worksheets, and audio recording, executive summary & transcript of an SEO thought leaders teleconference, email seo@netconcepts.com or give me your business card • Any questions come to you later, contact me: stephan@netconcepts.com