SES London 2011: 301 takeaways and top tips

Posted by Justin Deaville on 21 Feb, 2011
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SES London 2011 - 301 takeaways and top tips from Wordtracker

SES Conference & Expo covers basic, advanced and cutting edge SEO, PPC and online marketing. Mark Nunney, Thomas Baugh, Justin Deaville and Max Holloway have collected the best 301 top tips, takeaways and memorable quotes from SES London 2011.

We also have more up-to-date tips from SES London 2013

125 takeaways from day one

Jeffrey Hayzlett was CMO of Kodak. Kodak's journey from film to digital is one of the biggest transformations in business history. He shared his experience and wisdom in the SES London keynote speech.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

1) Passion is NOT a substitute for planning.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

2) The elevator pitch has become too long. The new elevator pitch uses the rule of 118: you have eight seconds to get your listener's attention and then 110 seconds to finish the pitch. Eight seconds is the average attention span people will give a new idea. 110 seconds is the average elevator ride time in New York. Moses got his pitch across in two tablets, so you can too. What is your 118?
Jeffrey Hayzlett

3) Set clear COS (conditions of satisfaction) for your service or product and stick to them. Eg, Big Macs will be delivered quickly. Spend more time on getting this right than anything else.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

4) CMOs have an average tenure of 18 months. So you don't have much time to get things right.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

5) To make things happen in your company - cause tension. No pain no gain. Push the line of what you can do but don't cross it.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

6) You must find your team's slowest and weakest links (be they people, suppliers or processes). Fix or remove them because you can only move as fast as your slowest team member.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

7) And make mistakes. Don't worry. Did anyone die?
Jeffrey Hayzlett

8) Sell on emotion. For Kodak this is emotional technology.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

9) Use the Four Es of social media: Engage, Educate, Excite, Evangelize. Evangelizing by your users is the end goal. To get there concentrate on building relationships and not numbers of viewers or visitors.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

10) Ask your customers for ideas. Examples: Kodak added a microphone socket to a camera after a customer asked for it; users were asked to name a new camera.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

11) When asked what the ROI on a huge social media campaign was, Jeffrey answered: I don't know, what's the ROI on ignoring? Engagement is the new ROI.
Jeffrey Hayzlett

Introduction to SEO

All Dave Naylor

12) What gets a site to the top? Relevant content, inbound links, fresh content, and authority.

13) SEO is great content, site architecture and links.

14) SEO is not spam, fooling Google, quick, easy or cheap (you will have to invest). SEO is not a stand-alone discipline. It affects all aspects of a business including content, business, development and marketing.

Before launching a new site:

15) • Use keyword research to find target keywords.

16) • Look for the keywords that people use. Eg, 'sinks' not the trade term 'basins' (in the UK).

17) • Get something live ASAP. Start with a content-rich holding page.

18) Tell Google which pages are important on your site by linking to them from your home page. Fewer links on your home page will increase the power given to each one.

19) Google only counts the anchor text equity of the first link of two links (or more) on page A to page B.

20) Site speed is important. Avoid code bloat. Keep javascript, images and CSS in external files, preferably on a subdomain (because Google and browsers will then load them in parallel).

21) Site speed: compare yourself to sites within your niche not the BBC.

22) Make a page's content relevant to that page's target keywords.

23) Make your content original.

24) Links within unique body text are the best. (Better than footer or menu links.) But don't just auto-add links to the same page using the same keywords.

25) Alt text in images please. But optimize for words before pictures as images are great for traffic but it converts badly.

26) Page title tag is the most important place to put keywords. Make unique to every page. 67 characters is the limit shown on a Google search engine results page (SERP) but more than that is indexed.

27) Google is considering your clickthrough rate (CTR) so you must consider the message in your page title tag and add a call to action if you can.

28) Meta description tag: use the main target keyword and it may show on Google SERPs. Work on your meta description tags for your top delivering pages.

29) Keywords metatag has no bearing on search engine results at all. Forget about it.

30) Make your H1 and H2s keyword rich.

31) Use 'strong' and 'emphasis' but don't overuse.

32) Use keywords naturally in your main body copy. Don't stuff with repetitions of target terms. Use alternatives, including for internal link text.

33) Use external links sparingly.

34) Use CSS positioning to decide what content Google sees first and get the good stuff at the top.

35) Try the little-known IIS SEO tool kit to check your site.

Ecommerce is hard …

36) Rewrite product descriptions and don't use the same manufacturer's copy.

37) Use product reviews from customers.

38) Write user guides. 'How to' guides always work.

39) Webmaster tools is your friend. It's free, gives you an insight into what Google sees helping you to identify problems.

40) Link building is the most difficult part of SEO …

41) Google values links; Google penalizes link buyers; getting the balance right is hard.

42) Suppliers, partners, sponsors, friends will link to you naturally.

43) Get creative with your 'paid' links, eg sponsor things and people.

44) Find competitor links. Whatever your competitors are doing, do it better.

45) Use relevant anchor text, pointing to a relevant page from a relevant site.

46) Overcooking the anchor text can kill you. So mix up your anchor text. To be natural, use your brand name in link text. Also your domain name and natural links like 'click here'.

47) Use quality content to get editorial links.

Link building

48) If your link bulding campaign is good enough then you don't need search engine traffic. See paper.li
Dixon Jones

49) @Jaamit became a link magnet by helping people.
Judith Lewis

50) Start with a strategy. Why are you building links? Random rarely works.
Judith Lewis

51) Understand yourself and your voice, then be consistent.
Judith Lewis

52) Build relationships with your blog, guest posts, press releases, speaking awards, interviews and networking.
Judith Lewis

53) For content: • be controversial • be the font of all knowledge • take a stand • be a personality • share • be funny • be prolific • be mysterious • … and, er, buy links, I mean take up intelligent advertising opportunities.
Judith Lewis

54) The secret to great link building is creativity.
Ken McGaffin

55) 35% of Wordtracker's sales come from referred traffic from sites. That's the result of lots of link building.
Ken McGaffin

56) Get your link magnet content right and it will bring results for years. Eg, Wordtracker's free Keyword Questions tool was launched over two years ago and it still brings new links and traffic.
Ken McGaffin

57) To become a link building magnet become creative. See Ken Robinson's Ted talk.
Ken McGaffin

58) The Keyword Questions tool was inspired by a quote from Kipling combined with a customer request.
Ken McGaffin

59) The rudest link builder in the world is Ricky Gervais. Ken's referring to his Golden Globe hosting speech. That was pure PR.
Ken McGaffin

60) 8 steps to becoming a link magnet: • Get creative. • Identify top targets. • Create something outstanding. • Prime your top targets. • Write customized press releases. • Tweet on launch extensively. • Monitor results and add new sites to your lists for future contact.
Ken McGaffin

International SEO

61) +400% growth can happen by expanding cross the globe.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

62) Much of the spend on translations is wasted. If content is not in search engines then why translate? Focus on the ROI of translation. Cost minimization is a key part of this.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

63) Google rules in most countries but not all. So do look at other search engines.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

64) Mobile reaches the parts desktops never reach. In some countries mobile is more important than others.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

65) Don't mix languages on the same page.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

66) Keywords can't be translated. They must be localized. For each language, you must start your keyword research again.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

67) Ask local teams for local word recommendations: they know the linguistic boundaries and markets better than you do.
Andy Atkins-Krüger via Rebecca Williams

68) Never look at the SEO of one page out of its context.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

69) Creative copywriting is harder to translate. If your site is international, plan your content from the start and make it easy to translate and localize.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

70) For each country, blend original content (written for country) with translated content.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

71) When making sites for left-to-right languages, make sure the calendar reads left to right too.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

72) The basics of international SEO are: use local languages, domains, links and hosting.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

73) Local top level domains (TLDs, eg .co.uk for UK, .no for Norway) are by far the most powerful for getting local results.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

74) In the real world you sometimes can't afford TLDs for each country. It's expensive to maintain multiple sites.
Bill Hunt

75) Smart 'geo-selector' (what country's content is served) is needed for users. Must let users override any auto geo locator with manual links. Make those manual links page-to-page from one country's version of a page to all the others. Both Google and users will like those links.
Andy Atkins-Krüger

76) Some SEO issues are universal across languages. Eg, you must pick the right keywords to target, your site must be easy for search engines to spider and be compliant with search engine algorithms.
Bill Hunt

77) Create a 'missed opportunity' matrix for target keywords. For each target keyword, include estimates of all searches made and current visits to your site. Then track changes following SEO work.
Bill Hunt

78) Be aware that targeting traffic in a new country with a new site may rob your existing sites of traffic.
Bill Hunt

79) Link building should target sites in the country you are targeting. You need ilnks from German sites for a site targeting Germany.
Bill Hunt

80) Use same page templates for different regions and countries.
Bill Hunt

81) .com is global not US.
Bill Hunt

82) To place a website in a country, search engines try a detect TLD, IP of server/host and the website's language. Google detects 33 different languages.
Bill Hunt

83) Use Google Webmaster Tools to tell Google which parts of your site are for which countries. Eg, yoursite.com/uk is for the UK.
Bill Hunt

84) Page to page country links can give a huge link boost if the different sites are hosted in different countries and IP blocks.
Bill Hunt

85) Create a search engine friendly style guide for websites. Make this compulsory for new website builds for your company by making the style guide part of new contracts.
Bill Hunt

86) Never go to using subdomains (eg, uk.mysite.com) to target different countries from using diretories (eg, mysite.com/uk) because it costs more to manage subdomains and there is no gain. That's pain with no gain.
Bill Hunt

SEO metrics

87) All those metrics SEOs like are great but clients are interested in money - ROI.
Peter Young

88) SEO metrics' problems combine with a lack of understanding of SEO to push SEO into a silo.
Peter Young

89) SEO spend is up and some spend is now serious. So those clients want accountability.
Peter Young

90) Use the four Rs: Return (ROI); Response; Reach (numbers of people and share of market); Reason (why has this happened?)
Peter Young

91) You need a baseline for measurement. Benchmark all your metrics. Base your forecasts on this.
Peter Young

92) Understanding clickthrough rates (CTR) for different rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs) is key to forecasting. Now these CTRs and you can foreacast based on increases in rankings.
Peter Young

93) Track offline conversions resulting from search with software like AdInsiht and Infinity.
Peter Young

94) Make report metrics relevant to your client, not you.
Peter Young

95) Use simple forecasting at start of a campaign.
Peter Young

96) Dedupe conversions to give realistic analysis.
Peter Young

97) Don't look at hero rankings in isolation. Always look at big picture if possible.
Peter Young

98) Page views, hits, top 10 pages and monthly visits are all caveman reports.
Matt Bailey

99) CEOs need to see metrics they can understand or you lose your contract.
Matt Bailey

100) Edward Tufte said "to make charts clearer add more information".
Matt Bailey

101) Use multivariate data (more data points). Eg, add visits to ranking reports; also landing pages, conversion rates, value per visitor.
Matt Bailey

102) Show comparisons between groups of visitors (segments) eg, referrers from different sites, different keywords, different types of links.
Matt Bailey

103) Show causality: why are there differences in response rates for different segments of visitors?
Matt Bailey

104) When looking at your data, look at your website at the same time. This will help you investigate causality.
Matt Bailey

105) Give different reports for different sorts of people eg, product manager and CEO.
Matt Bailey

106) Show the money.
Matt Bailey

107) Check response rates for different resolution monitors. Stretchy layouts might kill response on wide screens.
Matt Bailey

108) Use GA to find which 404s are found by people. Webmaster reports don't show you this.
Matt Bailey

109) Segment by entry point. Find out if you're ranking with the right page - one that converts. If not then add conversion to the low converting pages or soft optimization to the high converting one.
Matt Bailey

110) Filling in your 'per visit goal value' on Google Analytics as money is a great motivator.
Matt Bailey

PPC

111) Clever marketers think about what’s going on in the media and leverage that in their choice of keywords.
Erica Schmidt via Microsoft Ad Center

112) SEM is not only a science but also an art. The art: to make sure the right keywords show your ads at the right time.
Erica Schmidt via Microsoft Ad Center

113) Ad copy is scanned, not read. It needs to be compelling enough to get clicks and to always have a call to action.
Erica Schmidt via Microsoft Ad Center

114) Humans add the Art to the Science (of bid management).
Erica Schmidt via Yahoo! UK Search

115) Adwords QS is not or is only very slightly affected by domain name according to Sony testing.
Paul Szymanski via Yannick Veys

PPC or SEO

116) Collaboration or Cannibalization? PPC efforts should help your organic campaigns.
Bill Hunt via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

117) Optimize the organic rankings for your highest CPC keywords to save you money.
Bill Hunt via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

118) PPC advantages - control when your ads appear, you can test how you like and you can tweak to keyword precision.
Bill Hunt via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

119) PPC advantage: you can have a PPC ad on a Facebook page.
Bill Hunt via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

120) Most companies don't make enough money to sustain a PPC campaign which makes SEO cheaper in the long run.
Dave Naylor via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

121) SEO never turns off. However it also never loses any money if you don’t switch it off/on at the right time. That should be considered a win.
Dave Naylor via State of Search

122) Geo-targeting - cookies now mean that Google is also delivering the most relevant local, related organic results to searchers. However at a granular level, looking at control. SEO does not focus on being that specific or that granular. It looks to cover everything.
Dave Naylor via State of Search

123) For PPC and SEO you require a totally different set of skills and tools.
Jonathan Beeston via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

124) You can do anything with PPC – running your ads when you want and to whom you want. There is complete and precise control over what you do.
Jonathan Beeston via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

125) AGAIN? I can't believe in 2011 we are still having an SEO vs PPC session at SES UK! They work together. Period!
Davide Corradi

130 takeaways from day two

From day two of SES London we have 130 new takeaways. (The numbering starts from day one's 125 takeaways.)

The first collection comes from Patrick Altoft on link building from day one. Patrick makes an important and rarely aired point about the importance of branded links.

More link building

126) Bad link building can cost you your Google traffic. Eg, after some spammy link building was reported to Google, "one moment J C Penney was the most visible online destination for living room furniture in the US … next it was buried".
Patrick Altoft

127) Links are the most important ranking factor. Links are how Google distinguishes between otherwise similar websites. At it's simplest: the pages that have the most incoming links are deemed more important. But that is a simplification.
Patrick Altoft

128) Start finding link prospects by finding the inbound links to the top sites on Google's results pages for your target keywords. Use a tool like Open Site Explorer, then export into Excel and filter results for dupes and different type of sites like trusted sites (eg, .gov, .edu)
Patrick Altoft

129) Alternatively, Wordtracker Link Builder will do this for you and sort the link prospects into trusted sites, blogs, directories, article sites, job sites, social media and shopping sites.
Mark Nunney

130) Brand links are crucial. We tested 30 highly commercial UK keywords and every single keyword followed the same pattern: sites with large brand link authority rank higher. Non-brands are using branded anchor text links to make Google believe they are brands.
Patrick Altoft

131) Most people think that paid or unnatural links are devalued if they are on a site that is openly selling links or putting groups of paid links in sidebars or footers. But ...

... we have found the opposite. Google is devaluing links based on the “naturalness” of a site's link profile. So sites with very natural link profiles can use obvious spammy or paid links with immediate positive results. The same links pointing to a site with lesser brand authority are devalued and have no effect.
Patrick Altoft

132) Success on Google requires a high amount of “natural” links with more brand authority than competitors. Once you have brand authority you only need a small number of anchor text links to rank well.
Patrick Altoft

133) Good news on brand links: It’s a lot easier to get brand anchor text than keyword anchor text in links. Plus, very few people know about this so you can get a head start on your competitors.
Patrick Altoft

134) Easy 4 step strategy:
• Analyze competitors and find out how much brand authority they have
• Find out how much target keyword anchor text link authority they have
• Increase your own brand authority (with text links) so it’s higher than the competitions
• Then build your own keyword rich links until you hit the top
Patrick Altoft

135) Content syndication works well for building brand links, including online press releases, article syndication and guest posts.
Patrick Altoft

136) Don’t assume that your big brand competitors who are using paid links will be penalized – they probably won’t.
Patrick Altoft

Information architecture

137) Plan a hierarchical taxonomy for your site.
Alan Perkins

138) Give users breadcrumbs to match your hierarchy. These are links on each page back up the hierarchy from that page. Great for users and great for internal linking for search engines. Also, Google may display your breadcrumb trails on its search results pages.
Alan Perkins

139) Breadcrumbs can be made better using microformats.
Alan Perkins

140) Link from your home page to your most important pages.
Alan Perkins

141) Build your information architecture (IA) for the long term; never change the URLs that belong to that IA ("cool URIs don't change" - Tim Berners-Lee). This maintains the SEO and social power (= visits) of any inbound links. So make your URLs end with a slash (not .html, .asp etc might not be appropriate forever).
Alan Perkins

142) Avoid words such as 'special' and 'new' in your URLs as they may imply to search engines (and users) that the content in these pages is temporary.
Alan Perkins via

143) You can get good results with more than 100 links on a webpage.
Alan Perkins via

144) Faceted classification allows users to refine a page's results, perhaps many times (eg, by price, size or color). It can be no more than search results. Creates a lot of problems - lots and lots of complex URLs for numerous category pages. This can dilute internal link power and get search engines confused as they try and follow the numerous links. Solutions:

• add rel=canonical to the faceted pages
• limit facets and don't change the URL (can control this by cookie);
• restrict when facets can be seen by users (and therefore by search engines);
• product feeds and site maps into Google.
Alan Perkins

145) IA is for users and search engines.
Richard Baxter

146) Ask how many pages are bringing traffic to your site? (Not the same as the number indexed).
Richard Baxter

147) Use Webmaster Tools to check how many of your pages are being indexed. Compare that with the number of pages that are driving traffic. Track this over time (especially after you've made changes) - did you make a difference?
Richard Baxter

148) How many clicks from home page to your deepest page? Minimize this (flatten your site structure) as deep pages have less link power (most of which usually comes from your home page), less authority and fewer search engine visits (if indexed at all).
Richard Baxter

149) Basic site navigation (internal links) go up and down the site's hierarchy (the taxonomy). Intervene by 'cross linking' to 'related' pages - these might be at the same level (hence 'across').
Richard Baxter

150) Make sure your links will work without javascript and CSS. Check Google's cached copy of your website. Especially for your global navigation which should appear on every page.
Richard Baxter

151) Make sure internal links match the page the user is on. Eg, a menu on an 'under £20' gifts page should list such products -' navigation should match user behavior'.
Richard Baxter

152) Build a page's navigation (or part of it) based on internal searches - could be bespoke to each page. This should improve search engine results and conversion.
Richard Baxter

153) How to add lots of links to a home page without messing up design and usability:

• a simple 'more' link that reveals, er, more links (easy to do with CSS). Before clicking the link, users can't see them all.
• a javascript or CSS carousel that rotates brand images (beneath the images are simple text links).
Richard Baxter

154) Make your category pages unique. Even if it's just a few hundred words.
Richard Baxter

155) User generated content (UGC) is a great way to make pages unique. Ask for a review.
Richard Baxter

Real time search

156) Google has refined which searches deserve real time results. Google is looking at keyword use on Facebook, Twitter, Friendfeed, etc. So keywords will drift in and out of having real-time results.
Paddy Moogan

157) Being an influencer (on Twitter, Facebook etc) is becoming more important.
Paddy Moogan

158) Add an image to a tweet to improve clickthrough rates (CTR) with real time results. But images can take a few minutes to show. So tweet the image first then make your tweet that links to it.

But a click on the image will take user to image hosting service (eg, yfrog) or the image only, ie not on your site. Answer: 301 from the image file (after it's been indexed) to a page with the file. Great method for infographics.
Paddy Moogan"

159) Get into Google News. For which you need: multiple authors; news site maps aren't needed; numbers in URLs. Keep applying to Google to become a news source.
Paddy Moogan

160) Blog on breaking news. Monitor Twitter and real time results for ideas. Post stories quickly.
Paddy Moogan

161) Reach out to people who show in real time as Google obviously likes them.
Paddy Moogan

162) Any advice on real time for SEO might change quickly as search engines are still working this out.
Aaron Kahlow

163) Decide if real time search is right for your site and if it is a priority. Are your target subjects relevant? If so, do you have the resources to keep up with real time news?
Aaron Kahlow

164) Remember real-time search traffic is hard to convert.
Aaron Kahlow

165) Syndicate your content out to wherever you can: Twitter, Facebook, partner blogs, friends. This works for real-time results and all search engine results.
Aaron Kahlow

SEO tools

166) Spokeo gives lots of personal info about people. Enter name, email address phone number etc.
Jim Boykin

167) Domain tools for info about sites. Google knows this stuff - make sure you do.
Jim Boykin

168) SpyonWeb.com start with a domain and see all the AdSense and Analytics codes associated with it.
Jim Boykin

169) Sitonomy.com to find a site's affiliate accounts.
Jim Boykin

170) Wordtracker Strategizer is a great tool to find the long tail. Read this page
Jim Boykin

171) SEMRush: find how many phrases a site ranks for. Estimates how much your traffic is worth on PPC and much more.
Jim Boykin

172) SpyFu: what keywords is a site bidding on
Jim Boykin

173) SpyFu Recon Files. Currently free but this will change very soon. Shows wealth of traffic, gains and what you should be ranking on. Lots more.
Jim Boykin

174) blekko: to find most trusted backlinks grouped by time, rank, type and more. Graphs showing site comparisons. Who is copying your content.
Jim Boykin

175) Yahoo! Clues: enter keyword and get demographics on those searching with it. Also shows the previous and the next search most often made. Try and rank for the 'next' phrases.
Jim Boykin

176) Xenu's Link Sleuthl: spiders a website looking for broken links and redirects. Run Xenu on older sites to find 'link rot' - links that need updating.
Jim Boykin

177) Twitturly will find what URLs a user is tweeting - all of them.
Jim Boykin

178) Social Mention will track a keyword across social sites, forums and websites.
Jim Boykin

179) Wildfire compares stats for a number of Twitter and Facebook accounts.
Jim Boykin

180) Quarkbase: a huge collection of information about a website.
Jim Boykin

181) Facebook PPC is very targeted.
Jim Boykin

182) Clicktale tracks mouse movements, heat maps and lots more.
Jim Boykin

183) Clicky is a great alternative to Google Analytics.
Jim Boykin

184) Alexa.com will now show the sites a visitor went to before and after visiting the site being reported on.
Jim Boykin

185) Wayback Machine Beta: it's been updated. Find how a site looked in the past.
Jim Boykin

186) Uptrends shows detailed reports on the time it takes to load your site.
Jim Boykin

PPC

187) PPC is a great industry for people with OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) & Excel is your best friend.
Guy Levine via Kevin Gibbons

188) Merge Words recommended for PPC keyword research.
Guy Levine via Kevin Gibbons

189) Search query reports in Google and adCenter are a great resource for negative keywords to help qualify search traffic.
Guy Levine via Microsoft Ad Center

190) Quality score determines the cost of your ad and its rank. Your clickthrough rate (CTR) is the most important factor in determining your Quality Score (more important than your landing page or relevance).
Paul Mead

191) A good clickthrough rate will trump weaknesses in other areas of your campaign (unless you have an awful landing page).
Paul Mead

192) Google rates the quality of your landing page as either (i) good or (ii) bad. Make sure it's good - with relevant quality content, and a good load speed.
Paul Mead

193) Quality score will be affected by organic search clicks. News spikes for the keyword you're targeting will reduce your clickthrough rate and quality score.
Paul Mead

194) Your quality score is likely to fluctuate at the start of a campaign.
Paul Mead

195) Adding negative keywords to your campaign can help improve your clickthrough rate.
Paul Mead

196) Don't ignore broad match ads - use them tactically to discover new search queries
Jonathan Beeston

197) Google Live ads allow you to update numerical copy in your ads - so you can keep your prices up-to-date without having to restart your ad campaigns (Live Ads is only available through the Google AdWords API).
Jonathan Beeston

198) It's really important to keep a campaign clean - remove or pause poorly performing keywords. They'll reduce your quality score.
Jonathan Beeston

199) Don't just optimize for quality score - think about revenue. Keywords that have low quality scores can be highly profitable.
Jonathan Beeston

200) Discounting can harm your business. You might benefit from selling less product at full price, rather than increasing sales by discounting.
Brad Geddes

201) The biggest mistake with image ads is including too much text. If you can't tell what the image is selling, it's the wrong image. Make it simple and easy to read.
Brad Geddes

202) Add a call to action to image ads. Make sure the call to action on your landing page matches the ad.
Brad Geddes

203) When you run tests - decide your goals in advance of the test. Are you testing for revenue, profit, clickthrough rate, or profit per impression?
Brad Geddes

204) Test plurals. Just adding a single letter can increase (or kill) conversion.
Brad Geddes

205) When testing think about the people who will be reading the ad. People see your ad copy, they don't know your Quality Score. So what's the likely emotional responses to your ad copy: what do your customers want? What do they want to avoid?
Brad Geddes

206) Test pricing. Your price should be validated by the other adverts. So, if you're advertising a $99 product and the other ads are for $189 and $199 - your clickthrough rate might suffer because your price is seen as too cheap.
Brad Geddes

207) Test the look of your text. Test sentence case against Title Case.
Brad Geddes

208) You're likely to see the most dramatic changes when you start testing. Incremental changes arrive later. So, get testing.
Brad Geddes

209) Analysis of campaigns for several million keywords shows that longer keywords get better clickthrough rates.
Thomas Bindl

Remarketing

210) Remarketing allows you display Google Ads to users after they have left your site. Better still the ad content can be based on the content they viewed on your site. Use the cost per click (CPC) model.
Guy Levine

211) You can choose to remarket to segments of your visitors, eg:
• Visitors to particular areas of your site
• Visitors who abandon during the shopping cart process
• Visitors who are already customers
• Visitors who have purchased particular items (you can cross sell related products).
Guy Levine

212) Image ads with an eye catching message or offer work far better than text ads.
Guy Levine

213) Remarketing can increase ROI because:
• More targeted ads – target visitors based on their previous interactions with your site.
• Better clickthrough rates – users who have seen your site before are more likely to choose your ad from your competitors.
• Increased brand visibility – people who have been on your site will continue to see your ads as they surf sites within the content network.
• Greater conversion rates – providing the offer is right we have found conversion rates to be up to 75% greater on these returning visitors.
Guy Levine

SEO

214) No-one can reverse engineer the Google algorithm. If your SEO company says they can, they're lying.
Mike Grehan

215) Content is Still King, it just needs to be a lot better than it used to be.
Mike Grehan

216) Search engines love a page with keywords in the Title, Headline, Body and Alt tags. In that order.
Mike Grehan

217) When a blind person reads a braille newspaper first they will check the title, then the headline, then the first line of the first paragraph. Bear this in mind when using keywords on a page.
Mike Grehan

218) Keyword stuffing used to work, now it doesn't.
Mike Grehan

219) Search engines look at all the sites that link to you, and use that to determine what hub/sector/neighborhood you are in.
Mike Grehan

220) Links are like votes. If I link to you I am voting for your content and vice versa.
Mike Grehan

221) Links from foreign countries, or non-relevant websites, are worth very little compared to local, relevant ones.
Mike Grehan

222) Find the biggest voices, with the most authority in your sector and get links from them. Do whatever is necessary to achieve those links. Anything.
Mike Grehan

223) Find the authorities in related sectors and get links from them too. If you sell computers then these would be cable manufacturers, computer accessory companies, digital camera retailers, software developers.
Mike Grehan

224) Use a linking strategy that will last. If you're spammy Google will find you eventually.
Mike Grehan

225) Links from bad neighborhoods won't harm your site. But linking TO a bad neighborhood could quickly see your site penalized
Mike Grehan

226) Data = opportunities. Don't leave it to data analysts to sort through. SEOs get stuck in.
Chee Ho Wan via Joanna Butler

Content

227) 99% of B2B businesses are using content marketing to attract leads.
Lee Odden

228) Content must educate and make it easy to follow a logical path to purchase.
Lee Odden

229) Pay attention to where your conversions come from - in some industries (say, a fabric wholesaler), image searches can convert better than text searches.
Lee Odden

230) Who are your best customers (create buyer personae). What are their characteristics? What content would they like to see? Create content to appeal to different customer groups.
Lee Odden

231) PostRank.com measures the interaction with your blog (it counts Tweets, StumbleUpons, etc).
Lee Odden

232) Flowtown.com will give you an idea of your users' social media presence. For example, should you be targeting Facebook or LinkedIn? Just import your email list, find your customers' social presence and you'll know which sites to target.
Lee Odden

233) When you create your editorial calendar include the keywords that you want to target.
Lee Odden

234) Key points: develop & optimize content with customer personae in mind. Create an editorial plan. Develop your distribution channels.
Lee Odden via SEO Chicks

235) There's an old expression: 'the more money you make, the more money you make'. In SEO, the more content you make, the more money you make.
Lee Odden

236) Be patient: stick it out. It might take a year or more to build an audience for your content.
Lee Odden

237) Repurpose content. If you've created a video, take screenshots, upload them to Flickr (and add keywords).
Lee Odden

238) Use www.prweb.com. The content needn't be a traditional press release. Try writing an article instead.
Lee Odden

239) Use testimonials - collect a whole lot and repurpose them as a blog post.
Lee Odden

240) Facts tell, stories sell. Tell stories in your blog content.
Lee Odden

241) Brands not providing good content are actually delivering bad customer service.
Lee Odden via Kelvin Newman

242) Use optimized FAQs to save on customer support costs and SEO for jobs to save recruitment costs.
Lee Odden via Kevin Gibbons

243) On-site content should not just influence customers to buy but help them through the whole life cycle of customers' needs.
Lee Odden via Hannah Yarrow

244) People on Stumbleupon love large images, people on Delicious love large lists.
Lee Odden via David Tutin

245) Great content is useful, highly sought after, easy to find, simple, funny and controversial.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

246) Understand your audience, be authoritative, try videos, give advice, use data/infographs. Don't be afraid of being controversial.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

247) Tips for editorial content, use your keyword research to influence script. Be casual (email rather than letter). No jargon, use pics.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

248) 'Best of' and 'Top 10' lists are effective - don't forget to let people know you've featured them (may gain you links)
Caragh McKenna via Abbey @ Designs The Web

249) Google Instant increased long tail searches and increased the need for recent, relevant content.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

250) Your site's description on the SERPs is your call to action so don't neglect it!
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

251) Consider semantic search factors when creating your content. Google may display a number of results which are related topically.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

252) Make your content creation keyword and intent driven.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

253) Get into other means of creating content like blogs, news, recipes, books, products, twitter, Places, maps. Unique content will always succeed.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

254) Remember the QDF (Query Deserves Freshness) algo. A well optimized page with fresh content on a trending topic may overtake a page with older links. Influence QDF with promotional domains, news, blogs, online PR and tweets.
Caragh McKenna via Carolina @ Acrylic Websites

Miscellaneous

255) The average Facebook fan spends £44 more than a non-fan.
John Butler via Intendance

Takeaways from day three

First up ...

Video search optimization

256) Video is important because everyone is watching it. YouTube is the second most popular search engine.
Paul Carff

257) Get your videos indexed with a video site map including location, thumbnail location, description, duration, expiration date, publication date, restriction (eg, location). There are tags for all these. Load on Google Webmaster Tools (can take a few days to get your videos indexed).
Paul Carff

258) Try Google's open source Drupal plugin for video site maps (Joomla coming soon then Wordpress).
Paul Carff

259) There's more to getting your videos found than search. Eg, 'the tongue brush guy' couldn't sell his new tongue brush via search but a YouTube video went viral via 'discovery'.
Paul Carff

260) You can now pay to have your video included in the 'related video' part of YouTube pages. The model is pay per view (and you only pay if the view is a certain length). This is a way to seed viral campaigns.
Paul Carff

261) Creativity is the big winner on YouTube. Make creative videos.
Paul Carff

262) Video can go on your site or you can publish on YouTube and elsewhere.
Will Critchlow

263) There are two video microformats: Facebook's and Yahoo's. Using them is a great bet for better results for the future (Google Guy nods his head at this point). I vote for Facebook's.
Will Critchlow

264) On the page, mix text with your video. Use transcripts.
Will Critchlow

265) Use Speechpad to get cheap transcripts.
Will Critchlow

266) Use more than YouTube. Try vzaar who have a great api with lots of integrated tools, eg, email recruitment forms added to your videos that upload straight into Mailchimp
Will Critchlow

267) Use analytics on your videos. Wistia is great for getting detailed viewer stats. (If you want to use Google Analytics then watch out because it's hard.) Wistia give clear graphs and is easy to set up.
Will Critchlow

268) Search Distilled for great articles giving lots of top tips for optimizing YouTube pages.
Will Critchlow

269) Standard embed code does not give you a link back to your site. Build your own embed code with links back to yourself and with your own anchor text.
Will Critchlow

270) In your own embed code, include your own embed code!
Will Critchlow

271) Make the link back to YouTube (in your embed code) a link to subscribe to your channel as there is no confirmation.
Will Critchlow

272) You can pay companies to get your video embedded and viewed on a network of relevant sites. Again, this is good way to seed a viral campaign. And if you are a publisher then you can sign up to those companies and get paid to host the videos they are promoting.
Will Critchlow

273) Videos can be UGC, cheap or professional. UGC is recommended over cheap.
Jonathan Allen

274) With Xtranormal you can create videos without a camera using text only.
Jonathan Allen

275) With Animoto you can make videos out of your still photos and add a soundtrack. Good for making intros to your videos.
Jonathan Allen

276) With Treepodia you can make videos out of your sitemap. Quality is good. Try it on your ecommerce sites.
Jonathan Allen

277) With Tadcast you can place your products in the videos of some top YouTube video makers.
Jonathan Allen

Mobile search

278) You must get a top three position on mobile natural search results so it might not be worth trying.
Steve Page

279) Long tail searches on mobile are increasing all the time.
Steve Page

280) Clickthrough rates are higher on mobile.
Steve Page

281) Top ads on mobile get about 50% of clicks.
Steve Page

282) To get your app a high ranking on app stores you need a lot of downloads. For this you need to get featured in New and What's Hot lists. Try contacting iTunes - let them now when your app is read, approved, etc.
Steve Page

283) You choose your keywords for your app and these are used in search results algorithm. Choose wisely.
Steve Page

284) Upgrades are notified to customers which reminds them your app exists.
Steve Page

285) Track your apps download numbers with Position App (it's an app).
Steve Page

286) In UK, O2 will promote your app to their iphone users.
Steve Page

287) Get featured on the iphone add
Steve Page

288) Make your app free and downloads can increase many times.
Steve Page

Social media

289) A blog is the best social media for a business to start with. Decide on the main topic, who blogs and who manages it.
Lisa Myers via Microsoft Ad Center

290) Here's my Social Media Introduction presentation from this morning http://bit.ly/dEVPO1
Lisa Myers

291) When you want to get to know your neighbors, do you start by shouting? No, so don't shout in your social media marketing.
Lisa Myers via Microsoft Ad Center

292) Blogging is the recommended social media strategy for an older demographic.
Lisa Myers via Microsoft Ad Center

Duplicate content

It is, of course, deliberate that the following tip on duplicate content has a duplicate number.

292) Duplicate content is sometimes not a penalty just a filter (not sending you to hell just but not letting you into heaven).
Ralph Tegtmeier via Sam Murray

Facebook marketing

293) Facebook marketing takes up a lot of time so you must plan how you will resource this.
Liana Li Evans

294) Give special deals to fans and there is a good reason to be a fan.
Liana Li Evans

295) Stop the spam on your Facebook group or people won't engage.
Liana Li Evans

296) Women love badges on Facebook.
Liana Li Evans

297) Try quizzes to engage users.
Liana Li Evans

298) If you tag another Facebook user (use the @ symbol), you show on their page and in front of their fans.
Liana Li Evans

299) With all content (inc. ads) you must refresh quickly as people get bored.
Liana Li Evans

300) Push the boundaries of what's allowed so you now where they are. Here's how to get killed on Facebook ...
• Don't be a human (eg, pretend to be a dog)
• Post copyrighted material (even if it's your own material)
• Import too many RSS feeds
• Post too much commercial info on others walls
• Scrape facebook data.
• Get reported for abuse.
• Starting hate groups
• Add too many friends at once
• Spam, eg, too many similar posts
Massimo Burgio

301) Avoid being banned by adopting a social media policy for all social media sites, including blogs. Try these:
• Be nice, be honest, don't release proprietary info
• Don't be stupid
Massimo Burgio

If you still want some more, try 99 takeaways and top tips from SES London 2010

An extra credit and thanks for their help goes to Caroline Routledge of AcrylicWeb, a web designer in Swindon and Abbie Haslett, a web designer in Gloucestershire.

 

 

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