Google’s Second Most Important Algorithm? Before Google’s Panda, there was Phil

March 3, 2018 | SEO Resources
They named the project Phil, because it sounded friendly. (For those who required an acronym, they had one handy: Probabilistic Hierarchical Inferential Learner.) That was bad news for a Google Engineer named Phil who kept getting emails about the system. He begged Harik to change the name, but Phil it was. – Steven Levy, In The Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives. How does Google decide which Adsense advertisements to show on
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The #1 Reason Paid Ads (On Search, Social, and Display) Fail - Whiteboard Friday

March 1, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by randfishPouring money into a paid ad campaign that's destined to fail isn't a sound growth strategy. Time and again, companies breaking into online ads don't see success due to the same issue: they aren't known to their audiences. There's no trust, no recognition, and so the cost per click remains high and rising.In this edition of Whiteboard Friday, Rand identifies the cycle many brands get trapped in and outlines a solution to make th
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How to Diagnose SEO Traffic Drops: 11 Questions to Answer

February 28, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by Daniel_MarksAlmost every consultant or in-house SEO will be asked at some point to investigate an organic traffic drop. I've investigated quite a few, so I thought I'd share some steps I've found helpful when doing so. Is it just normal noise?Before you sound the alarm and get lost down a rabbit hole, you should make sure that the drop you're seeing is actually real. This involves answering two questions: A.) Do you trust the data? This
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Google's Walled Garden: Are We Being Pushed Out of Our Own Digital Backyards?

February 26, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by Dr-PeteEarly search engines were built on an unspoken transaction — a pact between search engines and website owners — you give us your data, and we'll send you traffic. While Google changed the game of how search engines rank content, they honored the same pact in the beginning. Publishers, who owned their own content and traditionally were fueled by subscription revenue, operated differently. Over time, they built walls around the
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MozCon 2018: Making the Case for the Conference (& All the Snacks!)

February 25, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by Danielle_LaundersYou've got that conference looming on the horizon. You want to go — you've spent the past few years desperately following hashtags on Twitter, memorizing catchy quotes, zooming in on grainy snapshots of a deck, and furiously downloading anything and everything you can scour from Slideshare. But there's a problem: conferences cost money, and your boss won't even approve a Keurig in the communal kitchen, much less a tic
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How (and Whether) to Invest in and Structure Online Communities - Whiteboard Friday

February 22, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by randfishBuilding an online community sounds like an attractive idea on paper. A group of enthusiastic, engaged users working on their own to boost your brand? What's the hitch?Well, building a thriving online community takes a great deal of effort, often with little return for a very long time. And there are other considerations: do you build your own platform, participate in an existing community, or a little of both? What are the bene
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How to Deal with Fake Negative Reviews on Google

February 20, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by JoyHawkinsFake reviews are a growing problem for those of us that own small businesses. In the online world, it's extremely easy to create a new account and leave either a positive or negative review for any business — regardless of whether you've ever tried to hire them. Google has tons of policies for users that leave reviews. But in my experience they're terrible at automatically catching violations of these policies. At my agency
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The Google Ranking Factor You Can Influence in an Afternoon [Case Study]

February 19, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by sanfranWhat does Google consider “quality content"? And how do you capitalize on a seemingly subjective characteristic to improve your standing in search? We've been trying to figure this out since the Hummingbird algorithm was dropped in our laps in 2013, prioritizing “context” over “keyword usage/frequency.” This meant that Google's algorithm intended to understand the meaning behind the words on the page, rather than the p
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Related Questions are Joined by ‘People Also Search For’ Refinements; Now Using a Question Graph

February 19, 2018 | SEO Resources
I recently bought a lemon tree and wanted to learn how to care for it. I started asking about it at Google, which provided me with other questions and answers related to caring for a lemon tree. As I clicked upon some of those, others were revealed that gave me more information that was helpful. Last March, I wrote a post about Related Questions at Google, Google's Related Questions Patent or ‘People Also Ask' Questions. As Barry Schwartz not
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The Biggest Mistake Digital Marketers Ever Made: Claiming to Measure Everything

February 18, 2018 | SEO Resources
Posted by willcritchlowDigital marketing is measurable. It's probably the single most common claim everyone hears about digital, and I can't count the number of times I've seen conference speakers talk about it (heck, I've even done it myself). I mean, look at those offline dinosaurs, the argument goes. They all know that half their spend is wasted — they just don't know which half. Maybe the joke's on us digital marketers though, who garner
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