Rand(om) SEO Insights into Panda

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The “Monthly Moz-Letter” almost got deleted today on my crusade to clean out my Gmail inbox. Glad I decided to open it – I almost missed this gold nugget from the Rand(om) Question section:

One last thing I’ll say about Panda in particular – you need to be willing to take dramatic action to respond. The sites I’ve seen recover are those who’ve done a complete redesign and a refresh of their content, making things so wonderfully amazing that they stand out as the best result for the query. Those who’ve made iterative attempts to reduce ads a little or throw some extra paragraphs on a page so as to hopefully get over the Panda algo generally haven’t.

Best of luck!
Rand

My take away? The huge light bulb moment SEO insight? If you want to rank first in Google in a post-Panda world, you’ve got to be a resource the best resource on the topic you’re targeting. Lead-aggregation sites (one of our biggest local rankings enemies in the moving industry) can’t just add tons of bogus content with a few keyword mentions, and increase their link buying budget and hope to outrank legit, helpful sites. But this also means that the websites of legit, authoritative businesses might not rank well if those biz owners don’t share their knowledge , and instead get caught up in the “Everyone needs to be on every social network to talk about themselves as much as possible” scamvice. Self promotion across social networks is not the same as being a helpful resource contributing to the betterment of your industry. I’m worried for the thousands of mom & pop businesses across the country that might miss that.

Mom & pop, if you’re reading this, here’s the best SEO advice I’ve got – be the best, most authoritative, most comprehensive, most helpful resource in the world on the topic you’re selling. Give all that helpful information away for free so that it spreads easily (Seth Godin shout-out). Then people will want to visit your site, want to find it in Google, Bing, Yahoo, Blekko, etc and, in turn, those search engines will want to deliver your site to the people using their search engines.

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Guest Post Counterpoint to “Social Signals and Algorithm Changes – Industry Dependent?”

An SEO friend, Alec, emailed me after reading my theory on a “relativity factor” in the Google algorithm. He had to respectfully disagree and explained why. I loved his point of view and asked if I could post his thoughts here as a guest post. He also has an intriguing article on the side effects of too much sleep over at the Healthy Way. Check out his side of the discussion and let me know your thoughts in the comments…

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Photo credit to quinn.anya

I just ran across your last post and being my usual contrary self, I have to disagree with you when you say a “one-size-fits-all approach wouldn’t work.” In this case I think it would. Market forces make it more equatable and eliminate the need for “fair metrics relative to [each] industry”. Besides since when is G fair? (but that is another discussion)

Big G wouldn’t necessarily have to have another algo factor for movers or any other industry (isn’t each industry unique?) as the industry itself will create their own relative effect on one another’s rankings by their willingness or ability to participate in each of the ranking factors.

Here is what I mean: Continue reading “Guest Post Counterpoint to “Social Signals and Algorithm Changes – Industry Dependent?””

Social Signals and Algorithm Changes – Industry Dependent?

During my rabid consumption of SEO knowledge in the form of podcasts, webinars, and blog posts, I’ve come to the conclusion they’re all wrong.

Not entirely, and not necessarily individually. But as a whole, if you combine all the suggestions & theories, they’re very one-size-fits all. I hear over and over again “social is important,” “You gotta build a Facebook community of thousands of followers around your brand,” “keywords in the URL are on the out,” “get your url tweeted & re-tweeted.”

From what I’ve seen in the moving industry, these are not true for everyone. Continue reading “Social Signals and Algorithm Changes – Industry Dependent?”

Bing [Almost Fails] Serving Results to Yahoo

So the Bing Yahoo search extravaganza has begun. Bing now provides all the search results for Yahoo’s searchers – both paid and organic. The funny thing is I haven’t tried it out yet. I mean, there’s not much to try out – Bing’s results have always been there. But regardless, I needed to see it with my own eyes. So I went to yahoo.com and put in a search (after being distracted by an article on the World’s Fastest runner, Usain Bolt and his dreams of playing soccer) for the term ‘movers’ and got this:

First Impression Fail by Bing Yahoo PartnershipI went back to the yahoo.com homepage 2 more times, trying the same search query Continue reading “Bing [Almost Fails] Serving Results to Yahoo”