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SEO Efforts That Truly Matter – 3rd Annual Vermont Web Marketing Summit


 

Email jgoodman@halyardconsulting.com if you would like the audio file.

 

Jonathan:         Okay, very good.  So this is my blah-blah page.  This is Halyard Consulting.  Started in 2007.  We do small-medium sized businesses.  We’re WordPress exclusive simply because it is the best SEO out there and that’s my personal opinion.  And we do a full range of internet marketing.  This is what I really want to talk to you about—my moustache.  This is Movember so… I think you in the back—you can’t actually see me.  Hopefully you can just see the moustache move up and down.  One in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.  In 2012, 242,000 new cases in disease will be diagnosed and more than 28,000 men will die—and you can follow my moustache.  This is 14 days worth of growth.  I am very hairy.  And you can see how it grows and then we’re having a celebration December 1st because my family can’t stand this.  So…Let’s get into this.

 

SEOs—and there is a lot of information out there and some of it’s good and some of it’s bad.  What I want to do is I first want to talk to you about “What is Google trying to do?”  There are three things that Google is trying to do—crawling, indexing and serving.  And when we look at crawling, it’s the Googlebot—it’s a spider, right?  Let’s get an understanding as to what the level of comprehension is here.  If I say to you “conversion rate,” do we all kind of understand what that is?  If I say to you “Panda,” is it an animal we’re talking about?

 

Man:     Third base for the San Francisco Giants.

 

Jonathan:         Well, there you go.  That’s somebody who watches football.  Googlebot… So Googlebot is a spider, right?  It’s an application or it’s a piece of software that Google sends out to look at the websites—tries to index all websites.  But first it has the… Because there are so many websites out there, it wants to say, “Why am I crawling your site?  Give me a reason that I should come to your site.  Give me a reason I should come back to your site.  That’s going to be critically important.  How often should it be coming there and how many pages should it crawl?”  Googlebot doesn’t… If you have 100 pages and you launch your site at 100 pages, Googlebot doesn’t come in and crawl all 100 pages.  It’s determined on the value of the content that you provide.  So it might do five pages the first time and if it’s seeing that there is more and more content, that might be increased as the months go by and hopefully then it will finish up and index all of your… And hopefully you are continually adding more.

 

How do you communicate with Google?  Sitemaps and Webmaster Tools—X-amount of sitemaps and Webmaster Tools, right?  We’ll get into all of that so don’t worry if you look puzzled.  And I’m watching your faces to see whether… at what point you do get puzzled.  Indexing—so Googlebot absorbs this information and it’s looking for three things—the content on the page, the tags in the metadata and what are the attributes—where are the title tags?  When you have images on there, understand that Googlebot can’t understand that image.  So you need an Alt tag to tell them what it is.  Hopefully you are corresponding the keyword for that page to an image and then putting the keyword back into that Alt Tag with a correct sentence.

 

Googlebot has a couple of different problems.  Rich media files—like video and audio and flash—it can’t understand any of these things.  So what we have to do; we have to provide additional information in text format.  What am I doing right now?  I’m speaking to you.  What’s my iPhone doing?  It’s recording that.  What do I do with that?  I send it to my transcription person.  She then is going to provide that back to me and this is all going to go up on my website as an article.  That’s—if this was being videoed, if this is audio—now I’ve actually got something that Google can understand.

 

So what is Googlebot trying to do?  And what is Google trying to do?  They’re trying to serve the right results.  You know, when we talk about “I want to be number one in Google,” you have to say, “What am I doing better than somebody else?”  It’s not just “I’m paying my SEO four times than the other guy’s getting it” because that doesn’t make a difference.  It’s got to be fresh content.  So the search query relevancy, Google looks at 200 different algorithmic points, including page rank and speed of site.

 

Speed of site is something that they just recently added.  It probably didn’t just recently add it, but they just recently announced it.  So speed of site means Google wants you to be under—and I get a lot of “hmms” and “ahs” after I say this—four to six seconds, right?  Now if you are large e-commerce—I had a whole argument with somebody who was a huge e-commerce person—yes, they want you to load in .001 second but if you are the average website and you are loading at 12 seconds, you’re loading at 20 seconds—there is no way that they are going to like you.  This is going to be a negative effect on what you’re doing.

 

Page rank is this rank and we’ll get into backlinks and everything like that, right?  And Google constantly wants to see that you are providing information—you are providing interesting, unique content.  You have a five page website?

 

Question:         I’m sorry.  Can I ask a quick question?

 

Jonathan:         Sure.

 

Question:         On site speed?

 

Jonathan:         Yes.

 

Question:         Just before we move on from that, I am of the understanding that site speed is slowed down by large images posted to the site.

 

Jonathan:         There is a ton of stuff that slows down site speed.  It can be on your server.  All my clients are on the AWS—the Amazon Web Services—because we want to low balance it as needed.  If one of my clients writes an article that then gets republished in the Huffington Post and we went from having 100 people a day to now 1,000 a minute, I’ve got to low balance that.  So that’s a site speed issue.  Yes, you’re right.  When you have a huge image up there and it’s not broken down into CSS and everything, it is going to slow down.  There are other things that you could do.  You could write the HTML correctly.  You can compress things.  There are different ways to do that.  So it’s not just a specific image.  Okay.

 

So content every day versus content once a quarter, right?  If somebody is a dentist in this room and you built a five page website and there is a new method coming out for laser whitening and you write one article and the guy that you’re competing with writes an article every single week or hires somebody to write an article every single week.  Google is going to… Googlebot is going to see there is new data.  “I’d better come back here.  Oh, there’s new data this week?  Well, now I’ll come back every two weeks.  Oh, wait a second.  I missed a week and there was more data?  I’d better come back every week.”  And that’s what you’re trying to do.  You’re trying to entice Googlebot to come back to your site more often.

 

Okay, Penguin and Panda.  So without getting extremely complicated, Penguin is links and Panda is content.  These are two major changes that Google is trying to produce to get the black hat SEOs out of the picture, to get the Ehows and the Livestrong—or whatever website that was prior to that—the content that they were paying somebody $5.00 to publish a “…point of how to take a photograph—ridiculous content, doesn’t help anybody.  And so with Penguin, we’re talking about links for that.  Keyword stuffing—anybody has an idea as to what keyword stuffing is?  There is a whole variety of different keyword stuffings.  I could 999 somebody else’s site so that nobody can see it and stuff a couple keywords on that side.  If my background is white, I could put content that is white and that would be keyword stuffing.  Cloaking is when I am coming to the website as a human and seeing it as a human but I’m telling Googlebot to see something completely different and it’s all stuffed with information and keywords.  Link schemes is when you’re getting link farms and you’re in directories that have zero page rank or have negative page rank or they take it out of—those are kind of the link schemes that we’re talking about.

 

So I believe the future of Penguin is going to be based on a couple of conferences that I went to is that they’re going to start bad PR balancing.  They are going to be looking at… Let’s say that you have a website out there and its 1,000 backlinks.  And we all understand what backlink is?  Sometimes it’s complicated, right?  I have a website—JonathanGoodman.com—and I write an article.  I guest post on my friend Kimanzi’s website and in that I have… Jonathan is great in anchor text and it links back to JonathanGoodman.com.  That’s what a backlink is.  But when we’re talking about the load balancing, we’re saying what I believe is 900 are coming from really low quality—PR0, PR1s—some of the stuff’s been taken out of the index.  And you move down through this and you wind up with no PR7s… PR10s… Now a PR10 would be CNN, Huffington Post but PR7 might be your local community website or your local school, right?  That could be a strong enough site.  So when Google looks at all this and they say, “Well really, actually you have 0 and 1 page ranks.  We’re not going to promote you to the number one ranking.”

 

And then Panda is the content side.  So if you have a site that has a 600-word article and in that page you have ten advertisements—links and graphics and stuff like that—those heavy on the advertising.  First of all, you’re not generating that much in AdSense, unless you’ve got just tons of people coming in.  You’re not going to get tons of people coming in because you’ve got low content, high advertising.  So thin content sites are Ehow—just jargon—stuff like that.  I’m going to watch my verbiage.  I’m not from Vermont.  We curse a lot in New Jersey, especially after Hurricane Sandy but I won’t do it here.  Ask yourself a question—“Are you providing solid valuable content?”

 

Spinning articles.  What that means is I have taken 600-word article and I’ve put through an application and I wind up with ten other articles—same exact sentences moved into different formats and paths and stuff like that—but it looks like jargon.  It looks like just a mess, right?  You’re not going to read it and nobody’s going to read it.  That first original article is quality.  Those other spun articles are all to be put on ridiculous websites that hopefully get your page rank.  They’re not going to work anymore.  They haven’t worked for a while.

 

Article farms… I don’t like to call anybody out but I’ve been doing it for so many years I might as well Ezinearticles.com -  If you’re spending the time writing articles or you’re hiring somebody to write articles and you’re putting them up on Ezine, you’re wasting your time.  And this is all the stuff that Google is looking at to see where your links are coming from so that they are going to rank you accordingly or take you off the index completely.

 

And scraping canonicalization from other websites—so what we’re talking about there is there are bots that can scrape content from your competitor’s site and put it up on your website.  There are ways to protect yourself against this and we’re going to get into that a little bit later.  And canonicalizing is duplicated data, so if anybody out there has articles and they are sending the same article to ten different websites, it’s all canonicalized.  It’s all duplicated and Google has to eventually make a decision as to which one is the more relevant.  What’s going to happen is, if the guy—Site B—has been around since 1998 and has a higher page rank than you, they’re going to actually outrank you for the content that you provided them if it’s all canonicalized.

 

And are you differentiating your content from everybody else in your industry?  And this goes without saying, right?  If you are not providing informative, interesting articles—they don’t have to be… You don’t have to get a Harvard student to write this stuff.  But you need something unique.

 

So Google came up with 23 points that they have visual site monitors to review.  And I’m only going to just go through six.  We’ve got a lot of… We don’t have that much time and we’ve got a lot of stuff to get through.  Ask yourself this question.  If you are starting to fall in the rankings, look at your content and ask yourself, “Is this article written by an expert, an enthusiast who knows the topic well or is it more shallow in nature?  Does this article have spelling, stylistic or factual errors?  Was the article edited well or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?”  These are exact questions that Google’s handing to monitors reviewing sites and asking these questions.  I’m not going to go through all of those.  They’re all on the web.

 

So Webmaster Tools—this is one of… This is the most critical SEO tool that you could use today.  So Google is looking… If you have Google Webmaster Tools out there, you’ll be able to pull up all of this information and you should see is there DNS and server connectivity issues?  Is there some problem with the website that is preventing people from getting to it?  Does the site timeout, right?  This morning I was—I love to admit my own mistakes—so this morning I’m Live blogging?  I don’t know if any of you have seen my Tweets but that’s actually Live blogging so that’s taking the information that I’m Tweeting and it’s compacting it into an article on my website and I double Live blogged and I crashed my site.  So that’s site connectivity, right?  That’s your server running?  I had to reboot the whole thing and get the server back up.  And are there errors in the robot’s .txt file?  I know that I’m getting technical for some people but understand you should be going back to your IT people or you should be going back to your SEO people and you should be saying, “Can I see the Webmaster Tools?  Is there any problem with the connectivity?  Is there any problem with the robot’s .txt?”

 

XML site guide—there are a variety of different kinds of XML site maps.  And just page site map is easy, right?  You have a site… You have pages.  You’re writing it or you get something to actually go through your site and produce the XML.  But you also have to understand that there is video XML, there is mobile XML, there used to be geositemap.xml, which used to be really great but now it’s any side of the actual page XML.  And if you have been approved for Google News—if anybody here is from the journal—whatever your local journal is or USA Today is, they should be approved through Google News and if that’s the case, then you want a separate XML site for your articles to be able to connect.  And what you’re really doing from a very basic level is you are waving your hand up to the Googlebot and you’re saying, “I’ve got new content.  Please come and look at me.”  And if your site is so large—if you are an e-commerce site, if you are a new site—and you’ve got thousands and thousands of pages—and I know that this is going to be frustrating—but you’ve got to break it out because think about it this way.  Googlebot is coming to your website for five seconds every month and they want to absorb the most amount of information as possible.  They have the ability to split and review information but if you give them a site map that has 4,000 pages connected to it, you’re never going to get all those indexed.  So what you do is you go from the top level—the category—you provide that and then that should link to other XML site maps that then absorb, that then have the listings of all the critical pages.  So if you’re dealing with canoeing or kayaking and you’ve got your categorization—I don’t know Kayaking I’d better switch that.  If you’ve got Pathfinder.com—big animal lover—so dogs, cats, birds, fish.  You mark a separate XML site map for your dogs category and you want a separate one for fish, okay?

 

And then the robot’s .txt file—you want to control where Googlebot goes.  Search engines are supposed to—I say “supposed to”—supposed to obey robots.txt files.  There are rogue search engines out there from other countries as well as this country that ignore the robot’s .txt file but it’s your one way of saying, “Stop.  I don’t want you to look at this information.”  And what might you want to block, right? Well, we’re talking about canonicalization and canonicalization again, if I didn’t explain it the first time, is duplication of data.  So you don’t want your archive folder to be indexed again because all those pages were already marked in the XML site map.  You don’t want to say, “Oh, go back into the archive” because all of that… If you wrote about baseball on Sunday and you have it on an archive page, it’s going to be canonicalized.  So you want to limit that.  Your search results—whatever anybody’s searching for, it’s not the business of Google.  You want to block all that.

 

Other ways to block content—noindex, nofollow is listed there.  And the most important thing that I could say about this slide is be careful.  I’ve even made mistakes.  I’ve shut down websites by nofollow and noindex and until you realize that you’ve sank in the rankings and your visitations are zero, you go back and you say, “What did I do wrong?” and it’s mostly the noindex and nofollow was misinterpreted and misunderstood.

 

Rich snippets—I love talking about rich snippets.  Does anybody know what a rich snippet is?  We are getting to the terminator age.  We are getting to computer understanding.  But unfortunately, because we are humans and we don’t think like computers, we think like humans and so what we are doing is something called schema.org where we are categorizing information for the computers.  Instead of saying, “Hey computers, how do you want to understand this?” we’re saying, “Okay, here’s what we have.  Bat.”  Now right now half of you are thinking, “mammal” and another half of you are thinking “baseball”—and that’s what the problem is.  When you say “bat,” computers don’t understand.  So we need to provide them the differentiation for when you’re searching for “I want to buy a bat”—are you wanting to buy a bat (baseball motion) or are you wanting to buy a bat (flying motion)?  And the way that they do this is through rich snippets.

 

Skyfall—I haven’t seen the movie.  Don’t tell me how it ends.  I don’t know.  But human comprehension—I walk up to somebody and say, “What’s Skyfall about?”  And you go, “Oh, it’s the new James Bond movie.  This is the 50-year anniversary.  Stars Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem and its directed by Sam Mendes.”  Okay, what’s the computer understand?  The computer understands that the type of thing that Skyfall is a movie.  Okay, well now it’s not a product.  It’s not clothing.  It’s a movie.  The name of it is Skyfall.  The description—I’m not going to read that, for anybody who doesn’t know what it already is.  Director is Sam Mendes.  Actor—Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem.  Sam Mendes isn’t an actor.  He is the director—categorization.  Genre—it fits under action, adventure, crime, thriller.  It’s produced in the English language and the duration is 143 minutes with a rating value—current rating value—of 8.1.

 

That’s what a computer understands if it’s written using rich snippets.  Sam Mendes is a type of person.  He is a person.  He’s a human being.  He is a producer.  He is a director.  He was… His parents were Peter Mendes who was a retired university teacher and his mother was a children’s book writer.  He was born on 8/01/1965 and these are the things that he performed in.  Now here we have a critical error within the schema.  Well, Sam Mendes is a director.  Directors don’t perform.  So at some point, in order to tell the computer that he is a director and directors direct, they’re going to have to change that part of the schema.

 

So why is that at all important?  Because the more people that are sitting in this room that understand you’ve got to add rich content—rich snippets—to your content, are going to have it be significantly improved ranking for categorized data.  When Google moves now to rich snippet content, they’re going to look at what is the context of the conversation?  And if your website isn’t providing that back to the computer—to Googlebot—you’re going to be lower in the rankings.

 

Google Analytics.  So Google Analytics, the second most important SEO product, shows us things like time onsite, if you were all in the other… the bounce rate.  How long are people staying on your site?  How many pages are they going to?  Are they—now here’s a critical question—are they on a desktop or are they on a mobile?  And if you’re not building your website for mobile using responsive design, which we do in WordPress or if you are not doing an m.domain name—and Google wants you to get away from m.domain names anyway—you are going to start serving pages in a mobile environment that are more conducive to a desktop environment—two different things.  And you’re going… You’re lined up with a higher bounce rate and people are going to get frustrated.

 

What are your conversion goals?  What, at the end of the day, are you trying to do?  Now some clients are trying to make more sales.  Some clients are trying to rank for specific keywords that they could then talk about during golf—believe it or not.  Traffic sources—keywords come in organic and paid.  I know we’re kind of… We went this way and that way.  But the SEO impact of what your organic… Your organic is always going to be more valuable than your PPC.  PPC, you’re always going to have to continue to funnel.  It’s like a drug.  You’re going to have to keep funneling money into that.  Once you’re in the top ranking for a couple of keywords and you’re getting traffic from that and it’s built correctly—it’s not built using black hat—but it’s built with solid, fundamental content that is going to last a good amount of time, then that’s free.  Landing pages, where are people coming in from?  Where are they—Geography—and are they currently finding you through social media?

 

So when we look at visitor flow—and this is also something that Google Analytics is able to provide you—you are able to see what’s your drop-off rate and specific to the page.  Where are they?  Where did they move through?  Here we have 256 visits, 210 drop-offs—so that in itself says nearly all the people came to the home page and then left—and 46 went to About Halyard Consulting and 12… Then it breaks down this way and it looked at Who I am, My Google Predictions and then some of that even continued onto a third page and we see how that is.  That’s incredible because if you have a page…

 

Somebody in the last session was talking about… Well, there were two interesting questions the last time.  But they were talking about they wanted to go… They wanted everybody to go to one page to have something that converted.  Well, if you’re looking at your visitor flow and they’re never getting to that page, this is why, right?  They didn’t find anything of interest… Look, from About Halyard Consulting they went to Articles, Business Directory and then a couple of five more pages.  From Contact, they went directly to About Halyard Consulting—and that flow is going to determine if you need to change things in the design, if you need to change things in the content or in the conversion.  There’s a lot of stuff in this so we’re going to just try to get through it.  How am I doing on time?  28 minutes.

 

Okay, Google Authorship.  This is who you are, how powerful of a brand name you are and are you going to…?  Is that going to then benefit you when you’re trying to get stuff to rank?  So when I contribute to guest posts on other people’s websites I say… Well, first of all, of course I set up my Google+ page to then… This is my Google+ page there and when I give anybody articles that I have written for their website, I put this in it and I say, “?rel=author” so that I am then saying to Google, “This was written by me.”  But more importantly, I am going back into my Google+ page to the contributor section and I am… How many of you are using Google+?  Barely anybody.  I know.  Ah, poor Google.  Must’ve spent so much time on that.  But really, it’s for SEOs.  They didn’t mean it to be for SEOs but that’s what it is.  The great news is that if you use it as an SEO, it is the most powerful tool outside of… Well, it’s for different reasons than Webmaster Tools because Webmaster Tools is pretty powerful.  You want to verify that information.  So you go onto Google+, you create a Google+ profile and you say, “I contributed to kimanzi.com and here is the article link and in that article there is this link.”  It’s confirmation that I wrote that article.  And the example that they use is Barack Obama, right?  I can say that “This article is written by Barack Obama.”  I can take his Google+ page and I can change, say, “Google+ for Barack Obama ?rel=author. But because I don’t have access to Barack Obama’s Google+ page, I can’t go into the contributor and verify that relationship.  So his picture is never going to show up for this.  Was there a question?

 

Question:         Are you saying there is a specific place to do that—not just posting it on your page?

 

Jonathan:         Yes.  Within “edit profile” there is “contributed to.”  That’s the area.

 

Webmaster guidelines.  Everyone should read this.  Everybody should read it every other year when they change it.  So it’s design content, technical and quality.  These are the three areas that Google is looking at to see whether or not you’re doing SEO correctly.

 

Do you have good information architecture?  Does your site layout well or does it somehow spin people back into the same regurgitated content and they’re not even finding anything and they leave your website?  Do you have a site map?  HTML—eh… XML—absolutely, right?  HTML is a little difficult because when you’re adding an article a day, to then go back into the HTML and rewrite that… So my opinion differs with Google.  XML is critical, right?  You want to limit… On that page where there is an article—100 links.  Now that kind of gets complicated when you have dropdown menus for navigation, footer information—all that stuff—you count up those links on your pages.  When you get to 125, Google is going to have a problem with that.  Rich content—not image heavy.  You want to use the old attribute to describe pictures.  I mentioned that before.  You want to check for broken links in the Webmaster Tools.  You can go in and see all that.  We’ve looked at the crawl errors.

 

From the technical side—go home tonight and turn off Java Script and see what your website looks like.  Turn off all of the…everything except for the text and just see what it reads.  If you wind up having HTML in there, there is a problem.  If you wind up having a completely blank screen, that’s a problem.  Robots.txt—check up in Webmaster Tools, right?  That is you have the ability in Webmaster Tools to go in and say, “Here is the URL for my robots.txt.  Webmaster Tools, can you review that please?”  And they will come back with any information that is incorrect.  .htaccess files—I don’t want to get that technical but it is critically important.  URLs need to be postname—not perimeters.  Again, Googlebot has… They’re going to get stuck.  When you have a happy website “I love Vermont” in HTML—unhappy website is “?page=1&sortbind=love&sortorder=”Vermont”—it’s really hard for Googlebot to understand that.  And I know some of you sitting in this room are e-commerce people and you’re saying… Or you’re even worse—.net or asp people—and you’re saying, “Oh, we’ve just spent a huge load of money and these parameters are all over the place.”

 

Understand from this point—from SEO keyword also—if it’s good content on the “I love Vermont” page, Google understands that.  You want to put your keyword in there.  Our keyword here is “Vermont.”  How do you get “Vermont” here?  Vermont is all the way at the end.  You have to go back in to Webmaster Tools and say, “Yes, I have parameters.  I’m sorry.  Here is a question mark.  This is going to lead to a page.  This is going to be an end.  This is going to be…”  You know, by the time that you’re done explaining that to Googlebot, whether you do it correctly or not, it’s complicated for them.  And of course, watch your page speed.

 

Quality—make pages for users, not search engines.  You want… You don’t want to automatically generate content.  Never spin articles—we talked about that.  Link schemes, cloaking, hidden text, white text on white background—all that stuff, right?  A little bit of a repetitive thing but this is specifically from the Webmaster guidelines.  If you go and you read this, this is what they’re talking about.  And if you allow comments, please monitor because even on the best of days, if I can find a website that allows comments and links, I’m going to spam the hell out of them.  There is nothing I can do.

 

Here is a little bit of my personal advice.  A little bit of knowledge can be dangerous and I say this to my clients all the time because they all come back to me and say, “Oh, I had this other SEO tell me…”  Okay, but did you understand what he was telling you to do?  “Well… no.”  Okay, so you did it half right and now your site is not ranking.  And I understand you’re all… Some of you are small business owners and you are the cook and chef and waiter and maître de but gosh, this is technical and… That’s the next line.  The next line is gosh—if someone says it’s easy, don’t let them sit down for a meeting.  This stuff is complicated, right?  If you get spam email saying, “Hey, we looked at your site,” runaway.  I’m not spamming anybody here.  You don’t have to bother with that.  Guarantee number one rankings —everybody wants to guarantee…I’d love to guarantee number one ratings.  Here’s the problem.  What I want as the keyword to rank might not be what Google wants the keyword to rank—so completely different things.

 

Won’t discuss the technical side – I mean even the novice in this room—if you have a question… First of all, I love emails and I hate phone calls.  So you have an email and you have tons of questions and it gives me a day to get through it and write that whole report on why we shouldn’t put white on white?

 

Yeah, but if somebody says, “No no, don’t worry about it.”  You know, you love when you go to a car shop and you’re buying a car and they’re like, “Oh, no don’t worry.  This is great.  Rated number one.  Everybody loves this car, runaway.”  And if they don’t differentiate between organic and PPC.  This is a critical thing because when they are talking to you and they’re saying, “We’re going to rank you for number one” and you don’t understand that the first three links are paid.  Yeah, they could be charging you money and they could be… If they’ve got you on the phone and you start screaming, “It’s not ranking for olive oil!” and they go, “Oh, check it now.”  So you want to make sure at the end of the day, if you have a PPC campaign and you’re throwing money into specific keywords, you also need to back that up with an organic campaign, right?  Because otherwise, you’re just going to be throwing money after money after money and at some point… And there is data that shows this.  If you have both a PPC campaign and you’re on the first page of organic, people are more likely to click you and they’re more likely to click you in the organic.

 

And that is it.  Thank you very much.  Listen—feel free… I am always available via email.  Any questions—and I’m sure we are going to get some questions now—but if you go back to the office and say, “I heard this, this and this,” email me back.  So let me check Twitter.  Let’s see if anybody had any questions and then I’ll take questions from the audience.  I don’t see any questions.  Did anyone have any questions?  Yes, I’ll take that.

 

Question:         How much does PPC affect organic, so Google AdWords affect your ranking or feel like give them something to get something?

 

Jonathan:         No, no, no.  No, no, no.  I mean if that was the case, then everybody would be pouring money into PPC.  People are pouring money into PPC now, right?  Oh, I’ve sat in meetings where I’ve seen what they’re putting into PPC and it’s just remarkable.  Yeah, if you’re a small business and you’re going to get a phone call from Google, wouldn’t everybody like to get a phone call from Google?  Isn’t that awesome?  And you’re like, “Oh, you’re going to help me with PPC.  Yes.  Oh, I should be ranking for these keywords.  Yes.”  Of course you should—plus these keywords—plus these other keywords.  Well, after you spent $3,000-5,000 a month and you’ve had zero conversions… Again, it’s what you want to do.  What do you want to accomplish?  And at the end of the day, anybody talking to you from Google—and yes, this is going to be on my website so I’ll admit to it—they are a business.  They want to make money.  And if they’ve got you on the phone, they want to make sure that you’re spending even more money than you had been.  So there is no legitimate causation or correlation to having a PPC campaign and getting higher rankings in organic.  It is two totally, completely different things.  Yes.

 

Question:         Hi.  I have… Our company’s website right now—we’re in the process of revising it, doing one… But right now, organically our search business that I work for, like one, two, three top—like weight conditioning.

 

Jonathan:         Great.

 

Question:         Should I be worried when we do the redesign?  How does that work?

 

Jonathan:         Hopefully you are doing the 301 redirects to any of your…

 

Question:         I’d like to hear the question.

 

Jonathan:         Yes.  The question was they are doing a redesign and they are worried that they are going to lose their ranking.  So if you are moving stuff around folder-wise, you’re going to want a 301 redirect that.  So if article on bananas used to be under category “fruits” and is now under category “Africa,” you’ve got to make sure that Google understands that this was the old page and now they need to redirect to the 301 and you want to do that in your .htaccess file.  Yes.

 

Question:         I have Google Alerts set up for my company and every now and then I’ll get an alert that’s just a page on my site.  So is that a Googlebot has just all of a sudden recognized that page?

 

Jonathan:         Yeah, there should be a correlation between when you launch something… And you want to go into Webmaster Tools and any time you want to do Fetch for Google—I forgot to put that in the slides—that’s really critical.  Fetch for Googlebot, for any new pages, you want to immediately go in there and put that page on Fetch for Googlebot within the Webmaster Tools and hit “submit” and make sure that it gets indexed.  It’s going to get indexed pretty darned quickly if you are a valuable site and you haven’t been blacklisted.  Did that answer your question?

 

Question:         Yeah, that’s great.  And even like a new blog post?

 

Jonathan:         Oh yeah—every site—anything.  Don’t duplicate, right?  So if you make a change to the About Us page, you don’t resubmit that.  Yeah.  I apologize for the people in the back.  All the people in the front are getting priority.  Next question will come from the back.

 

Question:         Can you talk about how social media links relate to SEO and do links on Twitter and Facebook—are those considered backlinks?

 

Jonathan:         They are not.

 

Question:         Can you repeat the question?

 

Jonathan:         Yes.  Sorry.  The question was are Twitter and Facebook links backlinks?  And the answer is they are not.  But that wasn’t… Was that your full question?

 

Question:         Just how does social media relate and influence a SEO or does it?

 

Jonathan:         It adds traffic, right?  And there are some that believe—and I kind of am on the fence with this—that Google is watching Twitter and will automatically index any new pages that show up in Twitter.  I believe that Google Fetch… Fetch for Googlebot is a much better way because you are protecting them and you’re saying instead of it going out into the Twitterverse, you’re saying… That’s why you need to do it immediately after you launch the page because you don’t want anybody scraping it or claiming it for themselves, in addition to obviously all the Google authority… Google+ authority.  But you’re going to their… as opposed… Then you want to send it out for Twitter and Facebook and all that and get social media, get more people following you and get more traffic.  That’s my personal view but I’m not a social… I’m not a social media person.  Can I take one more question?

 

Question:         Yes.

 

Jonathan:         One more question from the back.  No, that would be you.

 

Question:         I work with a lot of clients for service providers so when I’m trying to help them with their SEO it really comes down to the local SEO is their like account in Sacramento and I find it really confusing to know how to advise some of these local SEOs so I didn’t know if you could just sort of give an overview?

 

Jonathan:         Right.  So hopefully you’re doing geo-local coding, right?  So you want to do longitude and latitude.  So go find your longitude and latitude for that place—that wherever they are—and just in the footer… Well, read up on that because there is some debate as to whether you should put it on every single page.  But you need to have something that says “local.”  And when you’re writing articles, make sure that you mention where the article is from.  Look at it like a press release.  Okay, thanks everybody.  Absolutely take my email and if you have any other questions, please let me know.  Thanks.

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