Saturday, November 8, 2014

keyword research

Whatever the motives behind Google's recent removal of exact-match keyword targeting from AdWords, the resulting uncertainty makes keyword research that much more difficult. In today'st the implications of the change, and offers tips for the most effective research going forward.
For reference, here's a still of this week's whiteboard!


Video Transcription

This week we a're chatting about keyword research and the challenge that's being presented with the loss of exact match bidding capabilities inside of Google's AdWords platform.
AdWords has sort of become a keyword research and opportunity tool of choice for SEO and, of course, PPC folks for a decade now. We've always had some optionality around how we choose keywords inside of AdWords.
Say I was selling groceries online. Maybe I'm selling Asian groceries online and, specifically, fish sauce, and I want to do some modifications to which terms and phrases I bid on. So I could use things like these brackets to say exact match only, bid on keywords that are precisely fish sauce, no modifiers, no changes, not fishes sauce, not fish sauces, not Vietnamese fish sauce. I just want the word fish sauce. Or I could go with a partial phrase match, meaning no modifications to this part of the phrase, but yes if it's Vietnamese fish sauce or fish sauce recipes, that's fine. Or I could go fish sauce broad match and then let Google sort of extrapolate out and add all sorts of things on there.
Now, as of September of 2014, Google AdWords is making a change to their policy. All campaigns and keywords that you employ inside campaigns must use close variance. Essentially, they're removing the exact match and saying, "Hey, we don't think this power tool is useful, and that control is going to be lost to folks." 

There are two ways to look at this. One is Google took down their plaque on the wall that said "Do no evil" and put up a plaque that said "Be kind of evil when it makes us more money." That is one perspective.
As many folks have pointed out, including Larry Kim from WordStream, many, many campaigns, in fact a vast majority of campaigns that are integrated with WordStream he noted, don't even actually use exact match in this format. So maybe they're not losing all that much, and Google is just saying, "Hey, this is a very tight feature, and we're worried about how small businesses and people who are bidding might be employing it. Not all the users who are using it are power users. People are getting confused. So we're taking away that functionality."
My guess is the truth is probably somewhere in between. This will almost certainly lead to a considerable amount of more revenue for Google, because a lot more people will be bidding on terms and phrases that perhaps they should be bidding on and really want and perhaps they didn't intend to bid on and don't particularly want.
In any case, it loses some of that fine control. That's very frustrating for PPC folks, but it can also be frustrating for us SEO folks. Now, we honestly don't know. We don't have data. It'll be pretty interesting to see whether in September this changes.
If you go to Google's Keyword Planner today inside of AdWords -- which is free by the way, you just need to sign in with a Google account -- you can do a search term like "fish sauce" and it'll return a bunch of things. I did a search for fish sauce, and it returned for me things like fish sauce, average monthly searches 22,200, competition low. This is not competition for SEO, by the way. You can get that from something like Moz's Keyword Difficulty Score. This is competition in AdWords itself -- how many people are bidding, how aggressively they're bidding, that sort of thing.
Then, it suggests other things like Thai fish sauce, fish sauce substitute, vegan fish sauce -- I don't think that's going to work -- sauces for fish. Sauces for fish? Are you kidding me? I understand that technically has the words sauce and fish in it, but that has an entirely different meaning. It's sort of odd that they're showing that to me. Then, they give me the search volume for all these and this kind of thing.
What we don't know is whether these are exact, partial, phrase match, broad match. My guess is they're broad match, whether they include those close variance or don't include them, the number.
It's been kind of tough. It'll be very interesting to see if, when this shift happens in September, a lot of these numbers change dramatically, and we're seeing like oh, yeah, Google was showing me more specific exact data previously for these terms, and now they're showing broader numbers for each of these, or whether that's already the case today. I suspect it's actually already the case today, and it's been a while, a couple of years, since Google actually offered truer, closer to reality numbers around what these are.
I think these numbers probably include a lot of close variance and potentially even some broad case matches. 
SEO the lost ability makes it a lot more difficult. The bidding situation in AdWords makes it a lot more difficult to determine keyword performance, and keyword performance is something that's critical to us.
That is pretty frustrating, because we often use AdWords data, PPC data to say, " this is a super valuable keyword. SEO team, let's go get this search term and try and rank for it organically, because when we rank for it in paid search, we get a lot of ROI from that." That's going to make it harder, absolutely.
Possibly, it means more noise in these keyword research numbers. That noise could come from the inclusion of closer variance in the data. We will see how that happens. That potentially muddies the research and ranking process for us. It might be the case that this is already happening though.   

Thursday, November 6, 2014

How we evaluate a Website

User Context- The most important factor when evaluating Web sites is your search, your needs. What are you using the Web for Entertainment, Academic work, Hobbies or a vocational interests.Traditionally very strongly text-based.  of an academic journal with a popular magazine.

Web Context- Some of the visual distinctions that signal the nature of content in print sources hold true on the Web as well, although, because the Web encourages wider use of graphics, Web versions of printed works usually contain more graphics and more color than their print counterparts. Color graphics appeared on the New York Times Web site before they appeared in the printed New York Times, for instance.
Evaluation Criteria
  • Author
  • Date of Publication
  • Edition or Revision
  • Publisher
  • Title of Journal
  • Intended Audience
  • Objective Reasoning
  • Coverage
  • Writing Style
  • Evaluative Reviews

Evaluating Web Pages: Questions to Ask & Strategies for Getting the Answers:
  • What can the URL tell you?
  • Who wrote the page? Is he, she, or the authoring institution a qualified authority?
  • Is it dated? Current, timely?
  • Is information cited authentic?
  • Does the page have overall integrity and reliability as a source?
  • What's the bias?
  • Could the page or site be ironic, like a satire or a spoof?
  • If you have questions or reservations, how can you satisfy them?
 Evaluating Information Found on the Internet
  • Authorship
  • Publishing body
  • Point of view or bias
  • Referral to other sources
  • Verifiability
  • Currency
  • How to distinguish propaganda, misinformation and disinformation
  • The mechanics of determining authorship, publishing body, and currency on the Internet.  

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Guide to Recovering from Google Panda Penalty
First Google Panda update was released in 2011; it was announced to attack out all the low quality sites with poor content from the search results. There are many websites that have been demolished after the recent Google panda update 4.0. If you are one among them, this detailed guide is for you to recovering from Google panda penalty.
Before going into the details, first know which Google update affected your website traffic.

Also, do a simple SEO audit on your sites by going into your Google Webmaster Tools improvements, and you will see if there are any duplicate titles and meta descriptions are present in your websites.
How big is latest Google Panda 4.0 update?
Google recently released Panda update 4.0 on 21st May 2014. There are many sites that lose their organic traffic up to 60%. Even the giant e-Commerce sites like eBay lost approx.
Google panda 4.0 update has affected 7% of queries. Previously whenever Google panda updates were rolling in, they used to affect 1 to 2% of search results. It means, this time almost 7% (that’s a whooping number!) have been removed from search results just in the name of thin or poor content. This is the reason why many sites lost their organic traffic immensely, and few sites with quality contents have increased their search traffic dramatically.
Here’s the screenshot of Bloggers Passion traffic before and after Google Panda update 4.0. As you can clearly see, my traffic levels have gone up after the recent Google panda update while majority of other people’s sites have gone down.

This clearly indicates how much priority Google Panda updates are giving to the sites that produce fresh content regularly.
Google Panda Rescue Tips
If you search online for Google Panda recovery tips, you will come up with thousands of articles. But let me tell you one thing, most of these posts add no real value to the readers who really want to get back their site traffic after Google panda updates.
That’s the reason why I have carefully researched and sharing the tips to recovering from Google panda penalty. Let’s jump into the details.
Repair bad content on your websites
One of the major reasons your site is affected by Google panda updates is because you have poor content which is usually known as bad content.
These content often gets slashed by Google search engine crawlers, because they only want to show better contents to their users to give the best user experience. If you really want to get better search results, then you need to first sue your bad content.

How to find bad content on your sites?
Easiest ways to find and fix your bad content is to use your Google analytics. Know your traffic metrics to all the blog posts that you have published on your sites. The blog posts that have less SEO traffic are often the bad posts (in terms of Google eyes).
So here are few ways to repair the bad content to recover from Google panda updates quickly.
Use unique headlines
 Most people Google random post ideas and come up almost with the same headlines and use on their blogs to get better search results. Google updates slap you if you don’t have unique headlines for your blog posts or pages. Always make sure to have magnetic and unique headlines, and make sure to Google whether there are any headlines available that you want to cover.
Delete or update your bad blog posts
 I know we all have some blog posts that don’t add any value to either search engines or readers. If you know any of them, try fixing them immediately. As Google panda updates its algorithms every now and then, you will get better rankings for the posts or pages that you make some improvements by adding more quality or deleting the bad posts from your sites.
Give your old posts SEO boost by interlinking
 Interlinking your blog posts can be crucial in getting better search results. I would strongly advise you not to use any automation interlinking plugins or tools to linking. They often almost links to the same posts, so make sure to manually add the posts and maintain relevancy.

Broken links has nothing to do with Google Panda updates (Google Penguin updates are more concerned about bad links), but if you want to get fast recovery from Google panda updates, then find and fix all your broken or dead links on your websites. Because the links you add on your posts or pages definitely matter in terms of measuring your quality of the content. So focus on removing the bad links that are affecting your overall content.
Create High quality content
Content that is flawless
 If you have blog posts or pages with grammatical mistakes or typos, your sites get affected by Google panda updates. The only solution to recover is to write flawless content or hire someone who writes better contents for you to grow your organic traffic. Always make sure to double check your posts for any mistakes before hitting publish button. Google don’t want to show or give top search results to the content that is full of typos. At least hire an editor if you are not good at publishing flawless content to make sure you are not being hit by Google panda updates.
Content that is relevant
 If you are not writing relevant content for your sites, Google panda updates will slap you. So it’s always better to focus on specific keywords than confusing Google crawlers about the relevant topic.  So focus on your targeted keywords and supplement them with relevant keywords to get better search rankings and never ever use irrelevant keywords.
Content that is original
 Create content that is not shared anywhere else. Google updates like Panda and Penguin are giving more priority to the content filled sites that are uniquely written. If you are the one who is thinking to copy others headlines, description, sub heads or copy of the contents, you will definitely get penalized by Google Panda updates. And it’s hard to recover unless you remove these copied contents or and start producing really original content.
Stop too much indication of your posts
 While it’s good to have your content indicated on different platforms to get more traffic, but it’s advisable if you stop indicating your contents on too many platforms. Make sure to syndicate your content on only those sites where you are mostly active, where you share your opinions with others and help others to grow their businesses.

Conclusion about panda recovery

Google panda updates are mainly aimed at removing poor contents from the search results. Make sure that anyone is copying your contents and take necessary actions to remove the copied content from others sites. If you give better reader experience, Google panda updates give you better search results.