bryan coe digital marketing strategist

Why You Always Need Editors #HomeDepot

As SEOs we often look at a lot of website pages. It can sometimes be monotonous to write meta-descriptions, titles, H1 copy and other SEO bits that go into a site. But it’s always a good idea to have an editor (or at least a second set of eyes) no matter how little or if it seems like something trivial that is behind the scenes.

After all, you don’t want people to miss your best iffer!

Sometimes things slip through.. even for big national companies!

home depot - bad meta description

Sometimes Google is Smarter Than You Think

sundar-pichai-google-ceoI learned something new today that made me realize Google is sometimes smarter than you think and yet still pretty dumb.

Since starting at Armstrong Floooring, I’ve been working on the SEO for our new international website. International SEO can be quite complicated especially when you are using the same language in multiple countries. I know I’ve been quiet in terms of blogging for a long time, but I’ll be posting about some of the interesting things I’ve learned and accomplished with the new site.

Anyway, what I learned today has to do with a bug. Something went wrong in AEM (Adobe’s content marketing platform) and some of our non-English sites were showing the URL as their title. So if you went the sites and looked in your browser’s tab you’d see a URL instead of the title of the page. Google crawled the site while the bug was still in place, but was able to determine a title.

Armstrong Commercial Flooring Mexico SERP result

Since this isn’t actually the title I did some digging to see where it could have come from. It turns out it is the Alt-Text from the logo. I didn’t realize Google would look there if there was no proper title on the page. Great!

But then I checked the respective English version of the Mexican site, which does have an actual title on the page, but Google is still using the Alt-Text from the logo. So smart, but at the same time so dumb. Oh well.


Micro-Moments That Every Marketer Should Know

This spring Google Announced that mobile-search has surpassed desktop search in the US. Knowing this we as marketers need to evolve to understand how people are going online and what is driving their usage.

What micro-moments are driving engagement for your brand?

Check out the infographic from Google.

4 New Moments Every Marketer Should Know


SEO Trends In 2015 – Penguins, Pandas & Hummingbirds, Oh my!

SEO Trends In 2015 - Penguins, Pandas & Hummingbirds, Oh my!

With all the changes we’ve seen over the past few years it may be tempting to say, “SEO is dead.” It seems we hear it every year, but every year SEO continues to be relevant. The key is to be adaptable.

One of the most significant updates and maybe the best change in terms of user experience, is the way the Hummingbird update changed how Google parses queries. Rather than simply matching keywords to pages, Google now understands search intent.

This doesn’t mean keywords are no longer important, it means you have to widen your scope of niche-specific phrases. Plus, these phrases should come from normal conversational language.

If you are selling chocolates. You might try phrases such as “gourmet chocolate gifts”, “holiday gift baskets”, “milk chocolate shops”, “the best white chocolate truffles”, or “where to buy artisan chocolate.”

To understand this further. Think about why someone would perform a search, i.e. what is their intent?

seo for artisan chocolateSomeone that searches “where to buy artisan chocolate” clearly is looking to buy chocolate, so this would be considered a transactional search. This type of search is indicative of someone who knows what they are looking for and is probably close to making a purchase. For this type of intent, use target keywords such as, product names “Hershey’s milk chocolate” or generic products “chocolate raspberry truffles”. You should also include terms like, “purchase” or “buy” in your pages to attract transactional searchers. Other types of intent include informational and navigational searches.

Navigational searches are often when people already know the brand, product name, or they are looking for a particular site. So they may search for “youtube” or “godiva.” It would be difficult to rank for someone else’s company name or website, so targeting for navigational searches is usually reserved to your brand.

Informational searches are typically early on in the decision making process and at the time when someone is looking for information or just performing a general search. Typical searches could be, “chocolate” or “holiday gift ideas.” To rank for informational searches, create educational content, or content that genuinely provides helpful information relevant to the target query. This is where content marketing comes into play. Then to drive traffic to your products and services add links to product and services pages.

For SEO 2015 will be the year for understanding search intent. To make sure you don’t get left, behind start thinking about how your website and content are a solution for what people are searching.

Really tired of “SEO Pros” from India friending me on Facebook!!

So, as many of you know I’m on Facebook. I use it for personal and professional reasons. So, I keep getting friend requests from people who work for some company in India. I’m not going to dignify them by giving their name or a link either, because that would just help them. They know who they are! But, anyway… What they do is friend you and if you accept they start chatting with you and throw a bunch of web addresses at you and then start asking for outsourced SEO projects. It’s really agressive and quite frankly annoying! And by the way.. the site is crap. The English on the site is very poor.
I made the mistake, twice now, of accepting the friend request. Dumb I know. The second time was a bit better. The person on the other end could kind understand what I was saying.. I think. The first one’s English was so bad he didn’t know that I was taking the piss out of him… or US English “making fun of him” 😉 …
So, seriously. If you are a self proclaimed “SEO Pro” from India.. don’t waste your time trying to friend me. Got it???

A Nice Pat on the Back for the Blackbird e-Solutions SEO Team

From e-Life: Discussions about Blackbird e-Solutions and the Search, Tech and Localization Industries

If you remember in the past six months I’ve posted about a Search Engine Optimization client of ours, Superior Wash of PA (See links below). There was some buzz about the deal because the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce was excited that we made our connection at the new members welcome event. It was the first event I visited for Blackbird e-Solutions. The subsequently did an article about us in their monthly newsletter.

The project was finished several months ago, which has given enough time for an evaluation of the effectiveness of the campaign. It took about a month for the sites to climb into a good position in the search engines, but then as you can see in my previous posting: SEO Project a Success for Superior Wash of PA they, reached a top ranking. Today I received the following email from Jen at Superior Wash:

I just wanted to tell you that we have had an increase in Superior Wash’s website traffic. I am sending out 3 quotes to companies who found us on the web and completed the “contact us” form! Very exciting! I owe that all to you and I just wanted you to know it’s working!!

Hope you are having a good summer and maybe I’ll see you at a Chamber event

This is great news! I’m excited that they are seeing results from our campaign. It’s always good to have satisfied customers. 😉

Other Superior Wash of PA posts:
SEO Project a Success for Superior Wash of PA
Blackbird e-Solutions Secures SEO Deal With Accubright Systems, LLC and Superior Wash
Blackbird e-Solutions Featured in Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce and Industry Newsletter!

SEO Project a Success for Superior Wash of PA

From e-Life Discussions about Blackbird e-Solutions and the Search, Tech and Localization Industries

This is a follow up to my posting on February 29th, 2008: Blackbird e-Solutions Secures SEO Deal With Accubright Systems, LLC and Superior Wash.

In conjunction with their sister company Accubright Systems, LLC, where 4 pages were to be optimized, Blackbird e-Solutions was contracted to optimize 1 page for Superior Wash’s site. The page to be optimized was their mobile truck washing services page….

…Superior Wash’s target search query “mobile tuck washing lancaster pa“, the page Mobile Truck Washing and On-Site Fleet Cleaning Services- Superior Wash of PA, is ranked number 1.

Read the full story at e-Life: SEO Project a Success for Superior Wash of PA

I will take an S for one million

Pat can I buy a vowel? Wait! Make it an “S”. “Ok, that’s $1-million.” What?!? I thought you only had to buy vowels??? Oh the state of the alphabet these days.

“S” may be the most expensive letter on the internet. Well, at least is for the British travel company that recently bought the domain for 560,000 pounds ($1.1mln). Seeing that they already own, that’s the price of an “S”. The company bought the domain from a German travel company in a bid to continue their dominance in the highly competitive cruise market. “Cruises” consistently performs at the top terms Googled for the travel industry, and “cruise” is a close behind. The amount bests the previous deal of $300,000 paid for domain last year.

From e-Life Discussions about Blackbird e-Solutions and the Tech and Localization Industries

Blackbird e-Solutions Procures SEO Deal with TriStarr Staffing

On January 16, 2008, Blackbird e-Solutions signed a deal with TriStarr Staffing to take over their Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaign.

TriStarr Staffing is a leading staffing company serving central and eastern Pennsylvania, that specializes in Administrative and Professional Staffing. They plan to use SEO to help continued promotion of their well known specialties, as well as their newer services such as Recruiting Support and Human Resources Advisory Services.

The project will be a collaboration with the marketing firm; Haley Marketing Group. Haley will be creating the site design and the copy. BbeS is providing “Organic Site Optimization”, which includes the following: Site Evaluation, Keyword Research and Analysis, Site Optimization and Manual Submission to Major Search Engines. (Follow the link for more information about our Search Engine Optimization services or Contact Us).

We look forward to working with TriStarr Staffing, as well as collaborating with Haley Marketing Group.

I’ll also post and update when the site goes live.

From: e-Life Discussion about Blackbird e-Solutions and the Tech and Localization Industries

Wikia Search Alpha Goes Live Today

From e-Life

Wikia Search is the new user-based, or social search engine. The brain child of Wikimedia Foundation’s founder and CEO Jimmy Wales.

Wales admits that comparing Wikia Search on day one to Google is not possible. Here’s what he said on Tech Crunch:

“(Wikia Search) is a project to *build* a search engine, not a search engine… So the comparison to Google on day one is just mistaken. Google didn’t launch a project to build a human-powered search engine, they launched an algorithmic search engine with a clever new idea. So they didn’t have to wait for the humans to come in and start building it. We aren’t even running with a real index yet, just a placeholder index. Yeah, the search sucks today. But that’s not the point. The point is that we are building something different.”

Will it be a Google killer? Certainly not for sometime. The whole concept is that people will be driving how the search engine works. That takes time. The project is said to be based on the following four principles (from the about Wikia Search page:

Our Four Organizing Principles (TCQP) – the future of Internet Search must be based on:

  1. Transparency – Openness in how the systems and algorithms operate, both in the form of open source licenses and open content + APIs.
  2. Community – Everyone is able to contribute in some way (as individuals or entire organizations), strong social and community focus.
  3. Quality – Significantly improve the relevancy and accuracy of search results and the searching experience.
  4. Privacy – Must be protected, do not store or transmit any identifying data.”

I’ll have to be honest I’m not exactly sure how giving people the ability to edit and create entries that will be displayed when you search for something is going to make “search” better. It does sound like there is a big chance for manipulation. All the talk is about Google’s strangle hold on the search industry, and that they use ever changing algorithms to produce their results, and getting the general public involved is the way to make this better. Actually Google also has a human side to it’S results. A fact seemingly not known to many. At Google they call them Quality Raters. The Quality Raters are paid telecommuters (meaning the work from home) that spend their time rating how well the search queries match up to the results that the algorithms are producing, including whether or not someone is trying to manipulate the algorithms for their own use. So, in that way they also have human controls to improve the quality of their search.

It will be interesting to see how the quality will be controlled with Wikia Search. Although Wikepedia is smashing hit and I believe that collaboration is the wave of the future. It is true that just because something is a product of the masses, doesn’t always mean it is good. I guess time will tell…