Ways to Win Customers and Influence Rankings

Howdy, SEOmoz fans. Welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. Last week I got an email from a Moz fan who said, “Hey, Rand, I am trying to start up my SEO consulting business. My network is not that great yet. How am I going to find clients? Can you

Read the complete story: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/seomoz/~3/Uc0sZt0ILPA/ways-to-win-customers-and-influence-rankings-whiteboard-friday

How to Perform the World’s Greatest SEO Audit

World's Greatest Audit MugNow that tax season is over, it’s once again safe to say my favorite A-word… audit! That’s right. My name is Steve, and I’m an SEO audit junkie.

Like any good junkie, I’ve read every audit-related article; I’ve written thousands of lines

Read the complete story: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/seomoz/~3/JvCDDy2KdiQ/how-to-perform-the-worlds-greatest-seo-audit

Facebook plugs in WordPress for social sharing

Ways to use the “Facebook for WordPress” plugin.

(Credit:
Facebook)

WordPress bloggers rejoice, now there’s one more way to get stories out into the public. Users who use the popular Web publishing platform can now add in Facebook features via a new plugin

Read the complete story: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57452033-93/facebook-plugs-in-wordpress-for-social-sharing/

Social Annotations in Search: Now Your Social Network = Rankings

From SEOMoz

For years, the best way to gain rankings in search results was to have:

  1. Accessible pages featuring
  2. Quality content
  3. Targeting the right keywords
  4. In a way that naturally earned external links

But this changes things:

Cupcake Madness SERPs

The cupcake post from Everywhereist normally wouldn’t rank there. In fact, unless you follow Geraldine on Twitter, chances are you won’t see much of her site in even semi-competitive results. Here’s a screenshot of a logged-out view.

Cupcake Madness SERPs Logged Out

Not only is Google annotating the listing with a photo, creating social proof and certainly increasing click-through-rate, they’re also biasing to put these results on page 1 that might normally rank in utter obscurity. This isn’t just true for obscure, random searches either, nor is it exclusive to Twitter.

Web Analytics SERPs

“Web analytics” is a highly competitive query, and though they try, KISS Metrics and Market Motive aren’t normally ranking page 1 for everyone… but they are for me thanks to my connections to Neil on Quora and John on Facebook.

This should be giving everyone in search marketing a huge “ah ha” moment. As Google scales this out, concentrates on getting more people claiming their profiles and using logged-in accounts to search (supposedly this number was ~20% in March of 2010), the reach of your social network and the sharing you do to those networks will have a substantive, possibly massive, effect on your search traffic. The socialization of search is more than just Tweeted URLs or Facebook Likes or LinkedIn Shares having a positive first/second-order impact on generic rankings, it’s about influencing your social graph to see the content you share in their search results.

Rand's Google Social Content

You can see how you’re connected in Google by visiting this page (while logged into yor Google account)

Suddenly, a huge social reach is a competitive advantage in SEO. If you’re doing SEO today, I think it’s no longer possible to ignore the growth of your social connections as a big part of your SEO strategy. Honestly, I expect in 18 months, Twitter followers, Facebook connections, LinkedIn account size and engagement across these won’t just be social metrics; they’ll be KPIs for our SEO, too.

p.s. I don’t mean to suggest these features in Google are new – they’ve been around a while. But Google’s aggressiveness with showing and the user happiness and CTR that predicts, likely means this is here to stay, and will be a part of Google’s strategy for a long time. Bing’s doing this too with Facebook, and in a much more directly integrated way.