20th December 2014
26 Posts
622 Comments

How do users interact with SERPs on mobile devices?

As search becomes increasingly mobile, getting closer to being the majority of search visits every month, how we think about user engagement on search results needs to be updated from the old desktop paradigms of the Golden Triangle (which suggest attention sticks to the upper left and decays down and to the right).

Mobile search use cases and device features change the way users distribute their attention on a search result page. Not only does this change CTR curves for mobile, and the relative value of each position, it also changes how search engines evaluate usage metrics and satisfaction. This is compounded by the presence of Knowledge Graph (entity results, panels, and carousels) and Instant Answers (weather, scores, etc.) which may satisfy a users query without logging a click or scroll.

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Talking Back To Conversational Search

Search is becoming increasingly conversational in nature, and the growth of mobile in search is only perpetuating this trend (and the technology that powers it). This shift in search is fundamentally changing how content is discovered, crawled, indexed, understood, and ranked. To understand where SEO is going next, it’s important to understand some of the underlying changes in how search works and how we can take advantage of it.

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A Better Understanding of Personalized Search

Over the years, search results have become increasingly complex and that trend is likely to continue. The traditional model of 10 blue links and rank checking is no longer accurate as users are receiving results that are increasingly customized to them. As results are becoming more personalized, it’s valuable to better understand how personalized search results are being presented to users. Continue reading »

Google Domain Clustering Update?

A week ago, Matt Cutts posted a video discussing what SEOs could expect in the coming months. One of the mentioned updates was around host or domain clustering / crowding. I think some type of domain crowding update went out, starting last night. Hat tip to Jason Mun for noticing.

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A Disconnect in App Store SEO: Going Beyond ASO

There is an enormous ecosystem of search activity happening around mobile app discovery, but there appears to be a  disconnect in marketing strategy when it comes to using Inbound Marketing channels to drive mobile app installs. When it comes to search, a lot of attention has been given to App Store Optimization (ASO) to optimize apps for search inside of an app store. In all fairness, this channel has presented significant opportunity, but too often, major players in the mobile space are treating mobile and web as independent of lines business, instead of leveraging search demand on the web (a traditional Google search) to drive traffic to a mobile application. More often, they’re using paid channels to drive discovery.

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Sometimes SEO is Just SEO

It’s easy to get wrapped up in the growing complexity of SEO. I’m guilty of this myself.

However, sometimes it’s nice to be reminded that there is value in the same SEO we’ve been doing for years. I’ve had a reminder like this recently that I’d like to share (well, within reason… I can’t share all the details).

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Technical Hacks for Content Marketing

It seems like you can’t get through a week without hearing about “Content Marketing” or “Content Strategy”. These strategies call for increasingly complicated pieces of content, including “Big Content”, video, data visualization, photography, and robust design.

Demands for Content are Growing

This progression creates a problem for SEOs. There is a skill gap that exists across a lot of individuals. I think this is linked to the identity crisis we’re going through as an industry. What are we good at? What is our role? What exactly do “SEOs” do in the ever expanding umbrella of “Inbound Marketing”? And why do we keep doing guest blog posts when we know better?

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33 Links & How To Get Them

Transparency is something we don’t get enough of in SEO. Through hundreds of posts of strategy, theory, tools, and tactics, it’s not too often that we talk about real examples. Some of the best content at Mozcon this year were presentations that shared real examples of scrappy SEO projects.

My hope is to do something a little bit different. I’ve written philosophically about how to get links, but let’s talk about some real links, and how they were acquired.

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First Time, Every Time

Two weeks ago I stood on a stage in London as I gave a 45 minute talk to 300 to 400 people. It was the first time I’ve ever left the States. In the week leading up to my trip, I tweeted that every time I present, I stress, causing sleepless nights. I ended up getting a number of tweets, and direct messages, asking why – and some people seemed seriously concerned that I have social anxiety about presenting. I don’t.

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