Showing posts with label steve plunkett. Show all posts
Showing posts with label steve plunkett. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

2015 - SEO and Social Media Prophecy and 2014 Digital Advertising Notables

As we begin 2015 there are things that made a lasting impact on 2014 and some that are just about to raise their ugly heads and catch many marketers unaware and unprepared.
Here is your future checklist for Digital – Mobile Application Development, SEO, Social Media Management/Marketing, Digital Advertising and Digital PR in 2015

1. Voice Search – More to come on this, in detail, but as “users”, (Search and Social Media), move to mobile devices, specifically phones, Voice Search Optimization is going to be a really big thing and is going to catch many marketers by surprise. Hint: We have been researching Voice Search at Rockfish since 2011, (Google Labs), and have been actively doing VSO, (Voice Search Optimization for clients).

2. KBO or Knowledge Base Optimization – Brands, Brands, #Brands – With Google keeping the searcher on Google’s network longer, (See Google Play, Google Knowledge Graph and Google Plus), being able to make a change to Wikipedia by having that editor friend or the media person who works in PLAs assist you in modifying what your client doesn’t like to see about their own brand in Google. Learn how to fix anything….  including Wikipedia.. Or perish.

3. YouTube – Video Search Optimization – YouTube Hashtags work on Google + now.  Dec. 2008 YouTube was 25% of all Google Searches. Now, More U.S. Based 18-34 Year-olds Watch YouTube than Cable and YouTube videos influence the purchasing decisions of 53% of all consumers in the U.S. YouTube has now replaced the TV set.

4. Digital Media Distribution – Someone hacked Sony Pictures, “The Interview” was released via Digital distribution methods BEFORE it was released in theatres for the first time in History. Personal Note: I watched it on Xbox Video, I purchased it for $15.99 downloaded it and watched it the day before it was released in theaters.

5. Television Content Viewing Habits – Similar to the above but “Binge Watching” is now a thing. Personal Note: Still have not watched Breaking Bad – but one day, Binge Watching it. Commercial Television has made the leap with APPS. Phones, Tablet and Gaming Consoles now have applications where you can watch network television complete with commercials. Unlike TiVo, it’s not when you want it, or like AT&T UVerse where you can pretty much pick your own time schedule for your own shows, but that is for digital cable users, which also have another app. Welcome to the world of multi-screens and cross=platforms, Netflix now charges by the screen.

6. Mobile – It’s everything and it’s everywhere. Google considers Tablets more like Desktop than a mobile device and sees Smart Phones as totally different. Overall, smartphones and tablets accounted for 39% of Google organic search traffic during the third quarter of 2014. Personal Note: The big change I made in October 2014 in mobile was I removed Facebook from my phone after they launched Facebook Messenger. Life is actually a lot more peaceful, calm and I have been sleeping more. Facebook Messenger was never installed on my IPad either.  2015 Mobile trend prediction – Look for devices to have LESS memory, and more services expecting data to be stored in a cloud.
Actually, isn’t there a lawsuit about this? “iPhone users sue Apple over iOS 8 device storage squeeze” see hashtag #itoldyouso for most of these "predictions"

7. Mobile Payments – 2014 saw the debut of Apple Pay with Google Wallet still lurking around, Apple leap-frogged PayPal and Google Wallet for Mobile payments. Storyboard Messaging Service Snapchat got hacked, many private pictures of celebrities unclothed were released in October, known as the “Snappening”, next month in November of 2014 introduced Snap Cash, See a pattern here?

8. Hacking – The reason why I purchased #The Interview on Xbox360 was that Hackers from somewhere, (Either Korea or the U.S. supposedly, I can’t comment), broke into mail servers and got email from Sony executives somewhere that shouldn’t have been having private conversations in email.  (Ask Mark Cuban about his messaging app - Cyberdust ) - Hackers then also did Denial of Service attacks on the sources of bandwidth for XBOX and PS4, shutting Sony PlayStation Network down.

Personal Note: I didn’t notice, I was watching The Interview on Xbox Video during the time of the Xbox attack. While Downloading Destiny and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare updates.

 Wait before I forget, entirely TOO MANY RETAILERS got hacked in 2014, let’s hope, actually pray, it doesn’t get worse in 2015... But it will... you have no idea... #beafraid #beveryafraid

Our openness with online websites like Facebook, Snapchat, Foursquare,
(Foursquare got booted in 2013, remember?), and mobile devices, security and privacy should go hand in hand... however we are not doing it right..  I’m still not using a credit card, cash only at some stores.

9. Selfies - 2014 was the first year I took a “selfie”. I took 9 last year, have taken 4 this year, maybe if I get prettier, I’ll take more? Instagram is built on a foundation of selfies. Thank God Pinterest hasn’t fallen victim to the Selfie trend. Facebook has, Twitter has, and Television and Magazines have, ok, prediction.  Some study comes out showing guys that take #selfies too much are serial killers or something..

10. Video Conferencing – Aside from the multi-BILLION dollar Adult industry built around video conferencing platforms like Skype, how soon in 2015 does it add FaceTime and Google Hangouts? Pinterest made private boards and thankfully Instagram picked up the adult traffic before they ruined Pinterest. However Facebook and Twitter are now seeing the Adult spam deluge with Vines just like the Adult invasion that pretty much killed Myspace.  Right before we all left and went to The Facebook. Never fear. Google hangouts are being used for business. Google even has a business unit named Google Hangouts for Business. Let’s hope it’s not overrun with Adult like Snapchat, look for more Google Hangouts to be catalogued in YouTube search results for educational purposes.

Social Media isn't "new" it's just a term for Internet Socialization. We used to "Go outside" and "play" - now we sit and watch Youtubes on our phones.. or we sit and play Xbox or PlayStation, which.. now has people playing and "watching them play".

From XboxOne..

It’s easy to make group video calls on Xbox One using Skype. Before you make a group video call, your Kinect sensor must be plugged in. At least one person on the call must have a Premium Skype account. You can initiate a group video call with a maximum of 4 people in a group (including yourself). However, if someone else on Skype initiates the call from another device such as a Windows 8 PC, that call can include up to 25 people.

Also, Didnt Amazon just buy Twitch? Where you can watch models play video games..

11. Stock Market – Facebook will continue to have a higher valuation than TWTR but Twitter will become more useful and more a part of our lives and Facebook will be ravaged by a virus. But to my dismay, will bounce back and the stock price will still go up. Facebook Offers and Twitter Cards will still provide excellent opportunities for businesses but Twitter Cards will rule Google.

Dear CNBC people, watch TV, Are you showing everyone's Facebook Page or Twitter /Nick?

Why is Twitter Stock worth less? I truly don't get it.

12. Private Messaging Fragmentation – Here are words to live by in 2015 – “If you don’t want it public, don’t connect to the internet or a mobile network” – Mark Cuban created Cyber Dust for this reason. Look for security and privacy to suddenly become big deals in 2015 when we realize how clueless we have been with our data. Governments are going to try and legislate this in 2015

13. Candy Crush vs. Kim Kardashian – Candy Crush (free) and Minecraft (paid) are the two most downloaded games in 2014. (Google Play) Any guesses on 2015?

14. As people look to express themselves more in a predominately 140 character world, blogging will resurface, video blogs will become bigger and better as well as more people looking for places other than Facebook  and Twitter, Instagram, Still the "@"  will still rule social media.

15. People will realize people are using Google+ and as it gets more integrated into Google Search, brands and businesses, a Google hangout may be akin to a Fax machine but probably not in 2015. Maybe 2016. Google + will be this place hidden in search results, hmm.. (light bulb)

Reference –

Friday, September 05, 2014


Online Music Revenue Optimization 

What are the differences between tablet and mobile in terms of how users listen to music and where are the revenue optimization differences? Where is your best bet for spending time in social media to generate Music sales? SoundCloud? Beatport? ITunes or Google Play. How can online Music on FaceBook, ITunes and the Google Play Stores be optimized within the digital ecosystem. - See more at:

When Good Enough to Launch Isn't Good Enough

Creative professionals no longer live in a studio bubble. In the digital age, what we do is deeply integrated with the pressures and limitations of our technologies, partners, and investors. Many of us work with or for startups, teaching us crucial skills about perfectionism on quick turnaround, and how to embrace the minimum viable product. As a result, things like deadlines, launch dates, and speed to market are often the measure of success.
At the same time, increasing pressure to perform has made craftsmanship more important than ever. Because in a world with democratized creative, great work is a weapon in and of itself. See how to balance the competing interests of craft and urgency, and how to avoid the trap of “good enough for launch."
- See more at:

Brands, Games and Music Revenue Optimization

Online Optimization... Optimize your Brands, Music and Gaming assets.
Apps, Games and Music are the top items purchased on Social Networks, in Search and In-Game. What are the differences between tablet and mobile in terms of how users play games, listen to music and where are the revenue optimization differences? Where are you best bet for Music sales? SoundCloud? Beatport? ITunes or Google Play. How can online games and Music on FaceBook, ITunes and the Google Play Stores be optimized within the digital ecosystem. How can games be used to promote business? How can advertisers judge in-game advertising? How can game and apps companies provide a better user experience and optimize game play to increase loyalty and user numbers? How can these numbers be used to determine advertising rates? How can ROI be shown to brands that wish to participate? What Tools are available for Music purchases, game downloads and user beahviors within online games and music purchasing.
- See more at:

What's Up With Your Online Rep?

In today's marketplace, consumers have a myriad of online sources to learn about brands. The information they find online will greatly affect their decisions about how and where they spend their money. It is imperative that brands understand their online reputation and formulate a systematic approach to improving how they are viewed by current and potential customers, business partners and even current and potential employees. This session will show you the importance of maintaining a good online reputation, a 3-pronged approach to monitoring and improving your online reputation from domain defense, search and social reputation defense and content defense. - See more at:

How the Cool Kids Attract and Retain Talent

A shortage of the smartest and most creative thinkers continues to challenge key sectors like software development, design, marketing, and engineering. In a highly competitive, highly skilled labor market, how are the coolest and most creative companies using processes, technology and a culture of innovation to attract and retain these people?

In this session, two experts on company culture help navigate company cultural differentiators and open up a discussion about what companies can do to appeal to current and future job candidates. When all else is equal, what works to persuade top talent to join your company vs. the one across town? What cultural expectations are we seeing from Millennials that differ from previous generations?

The session will be framed around key themes including physical space, community impact, meaningful work, connectivity, and appreciation.
Active audience discussion will be encouraged and all attendees will receive a best practices takeaway.
- See more at:

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

SSS and The Meld - We Should Just Change SEO to "S"

I wanted to just change it to S.  There is also the SSS concept for SearchExchange Keynote which is similar...

Stabilization, Seeding and Semantics?

nope.. it was..

Except from Guest Post (after the jump below):

The acronym SEO equates to Search Engine Optimization, which is a facet of SEM, Search Engine Marketing, but SEO is NOT SEM without PPC."

We Should Just Change SEO to "S" for Strategy 

Monday, October 01, 2012

10 SEO & Social Media Myths on Social Fresh

SEO is dead.
Social Media has replaced SEO.
Tired of all the confusion?
Not sure where to turn for solid advice?
Let’s try to alleviate the fuzziness and get down to brass tacks.
Check out these 10 Social Media and SEO Myths debunked…
1. Search Engine Optimization is something where we get as much information from as many SEO vendors as possible and hand it off to our IT people to do SEO with that info
FALSE: Your IT guy/girl has email issues, security issues, server updates and social media malware on employees computers, i.e., the health of your Information Technology structure as responsibility, this is not their job.
2. Search Engine Optimization has been replaced by Social Media
FALSE: Search is what you use to find what you are looking for in all the social media content. Search will always be around, it will be more important in the future as more stuff is posted online. hello?
3. Social Media has nothing to do with our Brand
FALSE: Social Media IS your brand, online. Unless you are Nickelback, then someone else is your brand on Facebook.
4. Social Media has nothing to do with Customer Service
FALSE: Social Media IS Customer Service. Wait.. your social media doesn’t have a reporting system to customer service? Ut oh.
5. PR Firms should control ORM and Social Media
DEPENDS:  I worked at a PR firm for 6 years, so I know at least one has been for a while, but also know one that doesn’t. ORM utilizes PR, SEO, Social Media and #Mocial, [Mobile Social Networking]. ORM does work without search, social and PR but you also need content, and heavy integration with client’s customer service departments. Oh, It never ends, it’s a consistent battle, daily.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

PubCon Las Vegas 2010 Black Hat Session and Discount registration code

Black hatImage via WikipediaBelow is a 20% off coupon to PubCon Vegas
Enter Code: rc-3099415 when you register and get 20% off.
I'm Speaking on the Black Hat SEO panel.. it's going to be fun.. i'm going to out some famous websites doing stuff that @mattcutts and @google could remove them for.
(you better hope it's not one of your clients...)
PubCon Vegas 2010
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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

SMX Advanced London 2010 Full Agenda Day 1

"Advanced Organic Track
Leveraging Digital Assets For Maximum SEO Impact – When Google introduced Universal Search in 2007, it sent shockwaves through the search marketing community. The typical reaction: 'How can my optimised content rank when local, news, video and images results are pushing it off the SERPs?' The simple answer is to optimise multiple types of 'web assets' in addition to the text on your web pages, and you’ll often get more exposure on search result pages. Though the answer is simple, the SEO techniques to achieve the desired result usually aren’t. This session looks at the state of universal search today, and how to leverage different types of content to gain maximum advantage.


Rob Kerry, Head of Search, Ayima
Steve Plunkett, Dir, Search, M/C/C (see below)

SMX Advanced London 2010 Full Agenda Day 1

(unavailable - time conflict)
(Speaking @SearchExchange on the same day -

Friday, February 20, 2009

SEO: A Process, NOT a Project

SEO: a Process NOT a Project
by Steve Plunkett

Organic search engine optimization (SEO) is not a one time project, it’s a process. Similar to a garden, you must tend to it. Sometimes you have an existing garden where the weeds have grown over or nothing is growing. Sometimes you just have a section of yard you are going to rope off, till, then plant stuff in. Like a garden, organic SEO takes time and attention. It may be as simple as setting a timer to water or as complex as starting from scratch. Organic SEO is like a garden – if you don’t water it, it dies.

Soil Considerations

What is the history of the things that have been done to your website for SEO purposes?

Do you have pages chock full of links to websites unrelated to your company, where some of the website no longer exist or even some link to an "adult" website? Did someone hide a bunch of keywords the same color as your background at the bottom of the page? Maybe the site you are going to work on has commented out a bunch of keywords in the HTML code?(I know this is 2009, but some company, somewhere, has this on its Web site, right now.)

Sunlight, Rainfall and Other Factors

Traffic Analysis – Are there metrics on the company’s website? What kind of information can you gather from the statistics on what is going on with keywords, referrers, exit pages, entry pages, bounce rate, etc.? What metrics program does your company use?

We always ask our clients to install the website analytics program we use - - simply because it provides the measurements we need for our clients and also allows for consistent report formats for all clients.

What Plants shall we put in our garden?

Keyword Research - Gather the keywords out of the client's current website metrics and obtain client input on what they think someone might type to search for them.

We usually use a method that I have used for many, many years. We ask the CEO, (get's them involved at the top), the receptionist, the sales managers, the marketing director, the CFO and the COO (these two help get things done and also make sure you get paid) to provide five to 10 keywords each and not to share them with each other. This becomes statistically significant when you have different people come up with a keyword phrase more than once. Take these and put them into spreadsheets so we know what department wants what traffic and also to refer to later.

This is the primary keyword stage. You can also correlate what keyword terms got the most traffic and the lowest bounce rate to their Web site compared to what the client expects. Now obviously, you must factor in the fact that if the content doesn't exist on their Web site right now, they won't be found for it.

What kind of pesticides would be best to use to combat bugs?

Competitive Analysis – Look at the competitor’s HTML code, what can you observe about the competitor's SEO strategy? Do they have one? What keywords are the competitor's using? How do these differ from what the client gave you? Do they all apply directly to the client? Are the competitors using CMS systems, does the HTML code reflect the presence of another SEO firm?

These are the people your client thinks are their competitors in the business sector, not neccessarily on the web. Sometimes this works in your favor because the people your client thinks are your competitor may not be you, the SEO's competitor, and as such you may rise above them to obtain market share over the competitor’s rather quickly.

What plants grow best in your locality?

Competitive Keyword Research - What keywords are crowded? What keywords are open? Does your client provide a niche service where very few people in the channel are doing SEO? Is your client a start-up, where the market is bare or are you going for terms in real estate or insurance that are very crowded already?

Audience Metrics - What do clients think of when they search? In addition to Web site metrics, what does your client's customer think of them in terms of search? Can you obtain some of your client's customers’ contact info? (say that 3 times fast)

Purchasing your plants

Keyword finalization - With the market up and down so much these days, if you tied your key performance indicators (KPI) to your client's Web site traffic, you are indeed in trouble. While some people say keyword-specific search engine ranking is a poor measurement of SEO success, I would disagree and state that qualified converting keyword rankings ARE important.

If three out of 10 times a certain keyword phrase motivates Web site visitors to fill out your client's contact form, then this is a qualified converting keyword phrase. The fact that you are number one or number 31 for that term is somewhat important to your client and their potential customers.

This is just the beginning of SEO. We haven't even started modifying the Web site yet. Send the final round of keywords to the client for them to sign off on before you do your baseline measurements. Also at this point it’s a good idea to make sure to find out what the company’s “bread and butter” is and what areas it is growing in its organization.

Knowing this will help you pick your first keyword focus point for quick ROI and know what areas you are going to help the company grow in. The client’s expense for SEO should give them at least a triple return on its investment after a year.

Baseline - Where does client rank now in the search results of Google, Yahoo! and MSN for the agreed upon keyword terms and phrases? You can shoot yourself in the foot if you try and measure vague terms. Your best bet is to use what will make the cash register ring and track qualified keywords on a monthly basis to show progress. You might also want to measure the market share against the client's specified keywords and show them a competitive market share baseline.


Planning - What needs to be done and who are the people to be involved client side and agency side? You don’t want everyone watering the plants at the same time.

Prioritization - What needs to be done first? What needs to be done last? This is critical so that there is no wasted effort or wasted expense to client. Is there a new Web site in the future for the company? Make plans so you are not wasting the client’s money.

Garden Upkeep

The biggest misconception in SEO is that you can "do" SEO once on a Web site then you can just walk away. Just like a garden, if there is no water the plants die.

The nature of SEO is simply this: Today's rules or procedures may or may not work tomorrow. Google is usually the target we aim at for SEO, but that target moves quite frequently. Google, in fighting off the "bad people" who spam the listings, will change the way they rank Web sites often. By monitoring results on a weekly and monthly basis you can see which plants need more water or which ones are getting eaten by bugs.

Apply that to keywords that may be on page three of the results but need to move up because they are highly converting keywords. Just like you would get rid of weeds, get rid of bugs or change the angle of the hose for irrigation, there are steps you must take full time to keep your SEO growing.

Linkage and Niche Marketing for a Web Site or Company Channel – submit the Web site to Yahoo! directory, DMOZ and other places on the web where applicable.

Monitoring and Maintanance – observe statistics weekly, water the Web site where it needs it the most.

Baseline reports – Refer to your baseline reports. Did that plant have three leaves last week or two? It was one inch tall two weeks ago, but now it’s four inches. Report this progress to the client.

Bounce Rate and On-site Modifications - If you notice one of your plants is doing really well, give it some more space, more room to grow or more soil to spread out into. In other words, you can be number one out of 380,000,000 results on Google, but if being number one doesn’t bring the company business, you want to adjust your strategy. Change your focus to the keywords that convert, remove the weeds that are growing in your garden and prune the keywords on a page to come to a bounce rate of zero percent. Organic SEO, like a garden, needs to be tended. It’s a process not a project.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

An Interview with Steve Plunkett: SEO Experimentation Done Right

"Steve Plunkett is a well known for his SEO insights. You can follow him on Twitter or view his online resume at LinkedIn. Check out this interview by Ann Smarty on Search Engine Journal"
An Interview with Steve Plunkett: SEO Experimentation Done Right  

Steve Plunkett is a well known for his SEO insights. You can follow him on Twitter or view his online resume at LinkedIn. And now enjoy an interview with Steve:
How long have you been in SEO and how did you start?
I got on the “Internet” in 1994.. (at 2600kbps) I was doing mac tech support for AOL and also moderating a chat room and bulletin postings (kinda sounds like Social Media a bit, no?), and if we count making sure my bulletin postings ranked first.. if you want to count ranking first for channels on IRC, then 1995. Otherwise, Brian was starting webcrawler and Jerry was starting Yahoo! Directory in 1995 while i was a webmaster/sys admin in the Univeristy of Texas System and I was experimenting with spam controls for webcrawler (I accidentally got all the first 30 listings for about 10 terms), and would modify my website and they would recompile to see if the filters worked.. then I started up a web design component to the ISP I was working at in late 1995 and ranking websites kinda just was part of our service. Back then charging $150/month for hosting a website was still kind of expensive.. We just bundled SEO in with hosting.. but since we designed the websites we kinda just did SEO from the first step.
Do you believe SEO is evolving and getting “more white” so to say (no paid links, no spamming, etc)? Do you think Google will ever be able to win the war with Black hat SEO?
That depends.. the only links I have ever “bought” were Yahoo! directory once they started charging for it.. and free website listings I would get from buying ads in print publications or by being a member of this community organization or that professional organization. Because I was working at an ISP/Web Dev., and kind of an “anti-spam” editor @ yahoo while I was an higher up category editor for ODP/DMOZ I hated spam. So I never really did anything other than follow the “Golden Rule of SEO” – provide unique content specifically relevant to the search query. I’ve always been very vocal about not using links and following Google’s implied rules to the letter, it’s not only my client’s website, it’s my career for the past 14 years.
Back in 96 I remember the big thing was domain shadowing.. you would buy a domain and point it to a subdirectory of a website so a website with 7 subdirectories might be listed under 7 domains.. I never really did this for SEO, but I sure hated it when I would find the same site submitted to Yahoo! or DMOZ like 14 times (each URL could be listed in 2 categories), and have to hunt them down and remove them.
Honestly I think there are many things that are a bit black hat in how Google utilizes them to rank websites, but if you understand the basic premise of Google you can do good SEO. If you want to serve up completely unique and relevant content edited for humans’ search queries, then you should do well. I think SEO is evolving in the terms that there are more people doing it. Hence more people, more tactics, more qualified population per query.
You seem to Twitter a lot. What are you using the tool for?
Networking, i’ve met some cool people like @karlrove is following me now… @mchammer is a die hard raiders fan (Raiders 4 Life!~)
Twitter/FaceBook/Myspace has replaced Yahoo! IM – it’s also a good barometer of people, those that consistently push out negativity on twitter are people I don’t want to work with.. nor follow, etc.. I like the shiny happy people.. It’s similar to moderating an online chat room. I also use it for experimentation collaboration.
Are there any other social networking tools you use more or less often?
Myspace is good for the entertainment and fashion industry. FaceBook is a good local social networking site. LinkedIn is the premier business networking website. I stumble a bit.. I’m actually doing a lot of experimentation with RSS feeds and music, and different types of searching patterns on different music blogging websites. It’s part of my job to test everything so I have tried almost everything, ranking for podcasts, (HINT: It’s totally like ranking bulletins on AOL). Video search, Image Search, book search are all different search types that I deal with for varied clients.
I know you are quite active at SEOmoz. What other SEO communitites do you frequent and why?
I was active with SEOmoz and I would credit my professional membership there with a lot of my contacts on the web.
SEOMoz was the first SEO community I really got into because at first it was nice and clean. I met some people who didn’t really need to hear themselves speak, but wanted to learn and collaborate, which was what Iwould want in an SEO community.
I personally dont’ think there is a better website for people to read about SEO and i still read their blog from time to time.
You once mentioned you very often deal with SEO experiments. Could you list most important rules one should follow when running an SEO experiment?
My actually job title should be “SEO Scientist” instead of “Director of Internet Marketing”, every day I sit in my office and turn up the music and experiment all the time. I am running about 70+ experiments right now. Using blogs, social media websites and several other websites I have access to. (HINT: A good reason to donate some time to a non-profit) And of course just modifications on some Organic SEO clients I have, and documenting the progress after I have tested on non-client websites then pushed the tactics to client’s websites.
a. NEVER do an un-tested experiment on a client’s website. (never done it, it’s just common sense)
b. Document ALL the factors prior to conducting the experiment, add additional factors at baseline, first measure, secondary measure and tertiary measurement points.
c. Always allow for variances among subject and properly validate any outlying factors and account for them.
d. Re-evaluate your hypotheses at each stage of the experiment.
e. ALWAYS allow for statistical regression analysis.
f. Perform the same experiment 3 times before coming to a conclusion.
G. Either re-test or modify experiment if additional variables introduce themselves prior to experiment completion.
I know you’ve been conducting your own experiment on some issue I described in one of the recent post on internal anchor text over-optimization. Could you share your experience?
Well, I read the experiment but never saw the website, so my mind went to about 200 variables. So i re-created the test (my version of it, because I didn’t have all the factors the first person did, I guess?) on 2 brand new websites where there was no domain age, inbound links, etc. I tried in 2 ways, one standard top nav, sitewide, modifying one anchor tag sitewide.
Version 1: this worked positively and I am still #1 for the term.
Version 2: I modified the top nav on 8 different sub-sections to include the original anchor but NOT any of the global navigation elements. (still testing)

What are most common mistakes people make when condusting an SEO experiment?
1. Coming to a pre-mature conclusion.
2. Incorrectly diagnosing all the variables in an experiment.
3. Removing one variable from one of two competing subject groups
4. Not testing in a vacuum (running proper controls)
What are your plans for 2009? Any new projects in mind?
I started 8 different experiments right before I left the office for 2 weeks prior to NYE, the basics, title tags, ALT tags, anchor tags, etc. I did this to see what if any different weighting factors might be applied to on-site optimization as the year changed and also as a control group for newer sites i am launching this week. That experiment is on-going and by making slight modifications to certain variables, we have been able to bring some members of the control group to #1.
I think I am speaking @ IMSpringBreak (Apr. 2-4th, 2009) on IED (information environment design) – contact @davesnyder for more info about a good IM conference. It’s kind of like a spring break version of the ScarySeo conference in Ft. Lauderdale.

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