9/18/14: top 10 mistakes in seo and how to avoid them

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Whitney Eden of GroupM joins us to share the top ten things to think about when approaching SEO. Whitney is an Organic Search Manager at GroupM, where she develops and drives organic search strategy for Fortune 500 companies. After spending the a couple years being a freelance writer, she discovered SEO as a natural means of content amplification. When she’s not throwing around five-dollar words, she likes to spend her spare time cooking, walking her Corgi, and mixing up gin cocktails. Follow: @WhitneyCEden



2. TOP 8 SEO MISTAKES ANDHOW TO AVOID THEM2 3. 1. CREATING CONTENT WITHOUTA CONTENT STRATEGY Keyword Research is Clutch Includes: Business Goals Target Audience Keyword Volume Keyword Competition Website Content User Intenthttp://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo/keyword-research 4. 1. CREATING CONTENT WITHOUTA CONTENT STRATEGY Content Gap Analysis What keywords are wealready ranking for? What are ourcompetitors ranking for? What are some frequentlyasked questions wereceive from users? Can we leverage currentevents to make ourcontent newsworthy? 5. 2. NOT HAVING AROBOTS.TXT FILEPURPOSE OF A ROBOT.TXT FILEBlock Specific Areas of a WebsiteThe robots.txt file is designed to allow anddisallow search engine robots access to filesand folders throughout your website. Allowing allows crawling Disallowing prohibits crawling 6. 2. NOT HAVING AROBOTS.TXT FILEIMPORTANCE OF A ROBOT.TXT FILE Decreasing Site Bloat Discourage Crawlers from Visiting Certain Pages Disclaimer for Secure Information Search crawlers request your robots.txt by default Links to XML Sitemap 7. 2. NOT HAVING AROBOTS.TXT FILEHOW TO CREATE A ROBOTS.TXT FILESEO Tools Robots.txt Generator:http://tools.seobook.com/robots-txt/generator/Google Webmaster Tools Robots.txt Tester:https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6062598SEO Tools Robots.txt Analyzer:http://tools.seobook.com/robots-txt/analyzer/# robots.txt!User-Agent: *Disallow:Disallow: /searchDisallow: /style!User-Agent: GooglebotDisallow: /css!User-Agent: SlurpDisallow: /!User-Agent: msnbotDisallow: /fun!Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml 8. 2. NOT HAVING AROBOTS.TXT FILEDONT DISALLOWYOUR ENTIRE SITE!# robots.txt!User-Agent: *Disallow: / 9. 3. NOT HAVING AN XMLSITEMAPPURPOSE OF A XML SITEMAP Designed for Search Engines Provide a detailed roadmapof each pages Location Change Frequency Priority 10. 3. NOT HAVING AN XMLSITEMAPExample of XML Sitemap: http://generalassemb.ly/sitemap.xml(view-source:https://generalassemb.ly/sitemap.xml) 11. 3. NOT HAVING AN XMLSITEMAPHOW TO:1. Generate sitemap at http://www.xml-sitemaps.com2. Upload to your directory of choice Example: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml3. Submit to Google Webmaster Tools4. Once uploaded, add sitemap URL to robots.txt file Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml 12. 4. NOT HAVING AN HTMLSITEMAPPURPOSE OF A HTML SITEMAP Navigation Aid for Users Help Search Engines Find andIndex Content An opportunity to increase theamount of keyword-rich linksto preferred landing pages 13. 4. NOT HAVING AN HTMLSITEMAPEXAMPLE OF AN HTML SITEMAP - www.Apple.com 14. 4. NOT HAVING AN HTMLSITEMAPEXAMPLE OF AN HTML SITEMAP - www.Apple.com/sitemap 15. 4. NOT HAVING AN HTMLSITEMAPHOW TO CREATE AN HTML SITEMAP1. Create an HTML Page for your site map www.apple.com/sitemap2. Add a link to every IMPORTANT page on your site. Limit to under 100 pages3. Include keyword-rich anchor text4. Make sure theres a link to the HTML sitemap in your footer5. Dont forget to update the sitemap when you add new webpages. 16. 5. CONTENT AMPLIFICATIONWHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?http://moz.com/blog/weighting-the-clusters-of-ranking-factors-in-google-analytics-whiteboard-friday 17. 5. CONTENT AMPLIFICATIONTYPES OF CONTENT AMPLIFICATION: Social Media Manual Outreach Link Building Influencer Outreach Ego Bait Broken Link Building Organic/Editorial Links Create shareable/viral content Be newsworthy/current Create an authoritative bloghttp://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo/growing-popularity-and-links 18. 5. CONTENT AMPLIFICATIONHOW TO DO SOCIAL MEDIA: Include links in all posts Use a solid link shortener, likebit.ly (301 redirects, not 302) Link to homepage in profile bio Moar social media best practiceswww.socialmediaexaminer.com/social-media-seo/Does social media really effect rankings?http://moz.com/blog/do-tweets-still-effect-rankings 19. 6. SKETCHY LINKINGPRACTICES White Hat Content Community Relevancy Black Hat Trying to game thesystem Cloaking Hidden text Keyword StuffingMoz.com Beginners Guide to Link Building:http://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-link-building/ 20. 6. SKETCHY LINKINGPRACTICES Buying Links $$$ Links Goods/services Links Sending a free product inexchange for writing aboutit (and linking to it) Excessive Link Exchange Guest Post Campaigns An increasingly spammypracticeLinking Schemes: Google Webmaster Tools:https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/66356 21. 7. DUPLICATE CONTENTProblems with DuplicateContent1. Which version(s) toinclude in indexes?2. Direct link equity to onepage or separate itbetween multiple?3. Which version(s) shouldrank? 22. 7. DUPLICATE CONTENTCauses of Duplicate Content www vs non-www www.widgets.com/blog vswidgets.com/blog If both www and non-wwwversions of the URL are200, youre splitting linkequity.SOLUTION!301 Redirect! 23. 7. DUPLICATE CONTENTCauses of Duplicate Content URL Parameterswww.widgets.com/blog?ref=123 Printer-Friendlywww.widgets.com/print/blog Session IDswww.widgets.com/blog?SESSID=123SOLUTION!Canonical Tags! 24. 8. IGNORING 404S, ESPECIALLYSOFT 404S404: Not Found Regular 404Dude, that page doesn't existanymore! Soft 404 = Dead-end pagesIt should be a 404. But itsreturning a 200. Im soconfused!Google: Soft 404s can limit a sites crawl coverage by searchengines because these duplicate URLs may be crawled instead ofpages with unique content. 25. 8. IGNORING 404S, ESPECIALLYSOFT 404SHow to Find These Blasted 404s 26. 8. IGNORING 404S, ESPECIALLYSOFT 404SHow to Find These Blasted 404s 27. TWO BUCKETS O SEO Technical Robots. txt HTML Sitemap XML Sitemap Duplicate Content 404s Content Linking Content Amplification Content Strategy 28. QUESTIONS?