Update: this now includes day one and two! This week I’m at SES London and I’m going to try and keep my notes of the event up-to-date on here and Twitter across the three days. Wish me luck!
Image credit: Andrew Girdwood
So far, here’s what I’ve picked out as the best tips – favourites highlighted in bold. I’ve tried to credit the speakers where possible and thanks to the useful tweets from @gfiorelli1, @wordtracker and many more:
- Calculate the economic value of the micro conversions and you will have the real picture of the efficiency of your site
- 1st click attribution is like giving your 1st girlfriend credit for marrying your wife!
- John Lewis online success isn’t just sales – measure micro-goals; credit card apps, brochure requests, email captures
- Measure both macro & micro conversions – don’t just focus budget on 2% that converts. Improve the 98% that doesn’t!
- Measure social metrics that matter; interaction, amplification rate, applause rate (quality), economic value
- Use GA multi-channel visualiser to find channels drive conversions w/ multiple touchpoints
- Multi Channel Portfolio Optimization > Incrementability > To calculate the incremental value of your mrkt actions
- Media Mix Modeling > don’t figure out the order of the channels, but the optimal mrkt channel mix
- Don’t let your ad write cheques your site can’t cash!
- Insane focus on: Price, Cost, Share, Size = making huge amounts of money!
- HITS = How Idiots Track Success
Social Media & SEO Tools (@andrewgirdwood, @pauldavidmadden, @theukseo, @davenaylor, @richardbaxter)
- Yahoo Pipes & ifttt recommended for collecting feeds on keywords. But interact, don’t broadcast
- strawberryj.am for monitoring blog posts
- RSS Graffiti, Easy Promos & YouTube for Pages all recommended as Facebook apps
- Use http://www.bufferapp.com to enhance your social campaigns. It works out when your tweets should go and sends them.
- Engagement vitally important for social media – but automation can boost ROI with volume
- Social tools; SocialOomph (auto tweets), TweetAdder (follow/unfollow), dlvr.it, oDesk outsourcing
- Look out for Pinterest tools next – big opportunity to build strong social presence
- Why use SEO tools? Solve a problem, collect data or improve efficiency
- SEO Tools; Copyscape (find scraped/duplicate content), pingdom (downtime), xenu/screaming frog (crawl errors)
- KissInsights, FiveSecondTest & WebsiteOptimiser recommended as low-cost conversion optimisation tools
- Sistrix Research (PR history), SearchMetrics (panda), GTmetrix (site speed), LinkResearchTools
- APIs are all around us… use them and create tools to complement the ones you’re using already
- How to check for 404 errors in your XML sitemap: http://bit.ly/excelsitemap
- Use tools for measuring social media but 80-85% should be good ol’ human analysis.
- Is my link still live? > Excl =IF(XPathOnUrl(C2,”//a[contains(
- NetPeak Checker recommended as tool to grab loads of SEO info
SEO Sales (@lisadmyers, @lorenbaker)
- Estimating traffic worth; 1) what is conversion worth? 2) current rankings/traffic/rev 3) estimated volumes
- SEO sales; ban words like XML sitemaps, robots.txt from a pitch – talk to them about the money, not detail
- Sometimes you have to say “no” to clients when their available budget can’t get them the desired results
- Clients bringing broader marketing team into SEO pitches now, PR/Marketing, not just search opens up branding budget!
Technical SEO & Site Migration (@leeodden, @russosullivan)
- Use http://www.snippetoptimizer.net to show clients how the site will look in google
- Failure to plan is a plan to fail – SEO migration considerations; technical, process, people
- Technical migration considerations; CMS, redirects, links, maintain SEO, sitemaps, custom 404, analytics, webm tools
- Process migration considerations; design, content, linking, benchmarks, monitoring
- Businesses consolidate = combined company website. Design w/ SEO migration in mind (KWs, CMS, links etc)
- Crawl each site for assets and links. Map old pages on CC site. ID top converting pages. ID most powerful links..
- Ensure New CMS SEO Features: Title Tags, meta descr. separate title tag and on page titles, Image alt txt editing, URL editing
- Mapping of old to new content most important factor during site migration – preserve URLs wherever possible
- Audit & benchmark, preserve URLs, update backlinks/301, submit new sitemap & work with SEO agency from day 1
- International SEO tip – Use rel=canonical & hreflang to consolidate link equity across trust of main domain
Duplicate content (@SamuelCrocker)
- 1) Identify dup content 2) create sensible IA 3) create mapping & rewrite rules 4) create process & stick to it
- Justify budgets by stating how much search % contributes to online revenue – ask client how much they spent on TV/display?!
- ”Legacy” & Other Orphan Pages > Ask for a full DB dump? – Dig through server logs? Ask for a proper XML sitemap
- PPC landing pages; noindex/follow or rel=canonical if duplicate
- Templated SEO pages (e.g. car brands), why not spend money on unique content instead of links?
- What to do? Focus on the high converting pages > Create at a minimum some unique content > Focus on the high-converting
- How to create unique product descriptions; Fiverr, interns, UGC, video
SEO Metrics (@andrewgirdwood, @theukseo, @kevgibbo, @boggles, @willcritchlow)
- SEO forecast; Adwords volume, add 8% (other SEs), add 30% (KW variations), * by 65% (organic CTR vs PPC), * by 5% (CTR on page 1)
- Calculate your SEO efficiency by analysing costs vs results; traffic = organic CPC & conversions = organic CPA
- Track micro-conversions closely, so that you can ensure you are on right track before you can measure macro conversions
- SEOs should make sure they tie their search goals with business goals. Learning from PPC is a good start
- PPC works so well because marketing directors understand it
- Treating SEO as a PPC campaign >> helping convince executives to provide bigger budgets
- Google Webmaster Tools is a solution to the “not provided” problem as it provides all the queries/keywords
- Try http://whichtestwon.com/ for learning about which ads will be the most successful. Then implement your own
- whichmvt.com list of ab testing tool with all features
SEO General – Keyword Research & Competitor Analysis (@richardbaxter, @andrewgirdwood, @jonaths)
- Google considered marking slow and fast sites with special icons in the SERPs
- 1.75 in-store connections are driven by Search for every one online in Vodafone’s case study
- John Lewis do local very well, with location pages for all stores
- KW Modeling > Brainstorm >> Refine >> Categorize >> Test <<< this is the standard process to follow
- Search Engine Optimisation should be renamed Search Everything Optimisation – technical, content, links, social etc
- Combing seo and ppc budget is a good way to reduce risks of questionable strategies that may have been adopted by competitors
- Useful competitive analysis site queries, Google; intext: inurl: intitle: Bing; linkfromdomain: (finds who they link to)
Mobile (@AngelaHoAtWork, @aschottmuller)
- If you can’t read your site on any mobile device (without zooming in) then your site isn’t mobile ready.
- Use the WordPress WPtouch Plugin to make your blog mobile friendly
- 584% growth in mobile online revenue YoY (2010-2011)
- Kiddicare & John Lewis encourage customers to price comparison shop by offering mobile wifi in store
- Mobile search tips; split campaigns by device, analyse time of day/geography, use offers to entice
- Search position 1 or 2 is critical for tablet traffic
- Device & location big factors for mobile organic search results
- 65% of mobile rankings have specific mobile site, as opposed to using a single URL for both web & mobile
Link Building (@lisadmyers, @patrickaltoft, @optimizeyourweb)
- Different types of links; Giveaways, linkbait, paid links, guest content, syndication, reciprocal, social links
- Google+ may not be a ranking factor at the moment but it is a visibilty factor so don’t ignore it
- The biggest way social signals effect rankings is the way they syndicate out to other sites as links
- Every paid link should look like a natural link. More about what it looks like than if it’s paid!
- Link outreach; email people you know, blog editors in sector, give products away (carefully)
- Confused.com linkbait generates large volume of social shares – yet not generating links. Make sure you target bloggers
- Bad links do hurt sites & only way to recover is remove links & submit reinclusion request
- Large scale link prospecting tool by Justin Briggs recommended
- Research your competitors in the top 10 (pick comparable samples) – look at their backlinks and how they got them
- Goal of link building = build enough links to rank #1 for target keywords. Don’t take risks by going link crazy!
- Choose landing pages, not keywords for link building – mix it up & think about the content first
- Search by image to find which sites shared/linked to competitor infographics
- Content seeding; articles, blogs, emails, forums, infographics, RSS, Twitter, Facebook etc
- Advanced link building = be patient & manage client expectations. Think long-term strategies, not quick wins
- CNN wont link to you, so get links from websites that CNN already link to
- Get links from competitors, crawl outbound links on Xenu Link Sleuth – “look for no such host”, buy that inactive domain!
- Get indirect competitor links; use LinkResearchTools to find common links which competitors link to & target them!
- Use a good URL for competitons – e.g. /snowboarding – then you can update landing page content once comp is over
- Post a link on Wikipedia even though it’s nofollow. People will use that link where it might not be nofollow
- Image search by image = great link building opportunity. Find image theft (e.g. infographics) & ask for link!
Social Media & Video (@avinash, @jakelangwith)
- Most of what’s measured in social media is garbage – so actions are not innovative, e.g. Facebook just used for comps
- National Express (Facebook) & Marks & Spencer (Twitter) highlighted as great examples of social strategy – Disney UK (Twitter) bad example
- LinkedIn is the best platform for sourcing SEO staff
- LinkedIn tips: use advanced search, current job, multiple job titles, location radius, filter by keywords
- Retweet an influencer. If they retweet you back, you can gain a lot of followers
- Plan ahead to schedule social strategy around large events, Olympics, Super Bowl, X Factor etc
- Consumers exposed to a brand on social media are 50% more likely to click on a search ad
- 38% of users access videos via search engines
Google+ (@lorenbaker, @aschottmuller)
- There are 3.5 Million Google+ users in the UK
- When does a search, he wants to see best results on web – not just his Google+ friends & local results
- “Search Plus Your World” is really just “Search Plus Your Google” – but is that really in the best interest of users?
- Google wants to be the Google of social – why wouldn’t they bring Twitter/Facebook/Flickr etc into results?
- Will people take the big leap from Facebook to Google+? Why would they? How will G get them to do it?
PPC/online advertising (@guylevine, @duncanparry, @daxhamman, @caroline_rolfe)
- Why invest in PPC? It works – your competitors are already doing it.
- Make sure you set time spans on remarketing….few weeks can be ok a few months will annoy customers
- A ranking in position 3 or 4 with review stars can generate as much traffic as number 1 position
- Think about your brand when you’re writing a PPC ad – it may look spammy and may not be good for it.
- Search retargeting company Chango are now active in the UK
- Retargeting is broader than site retargeting. Infographic reveals 7 types effective retargeting
- Adding order ids to remarketing ads to do attribution modelling super quick
- Counterfeit products big problem for Links of London, 1,100 sites contain luxury brand name & drives PPC prices up
- Taking down counterfeit competitor sites = 41% decrease in brand PPC & 50% traffic increase for same budget!
- http://Luminate.com: lets publishers put ads on their images
- Use http://cannedbanners.com/ to help make your own banner ads