• http://www.brysonmeunier.com/ Bryson Meunier

    Great post, but I have serious doubts about your conclusions with regard to mobile search. Over a year ago Google said that the average % of total searches done on a mobile device was 14%, with some industries (like restaurants) getting as many as 30% of all searches coming from mobile. Performics also reported at the beginning of this year that mobile paid search clicks were up to almost 25% of the total. Since the total % of mobile searches available on average and the numbers released by Performics are much higher than your 11% today, it makes me think that the 25 sites you’ve chosen either aren’t optimized for mobile devices and therefore aren’t getting the search traffic; or are just in categories with less opportunity than the average.

    No doubt there is some hype around mobile search, since it still doesn’t have the lion’s share of traffic, regardless. I do believe that people who are developing with a mobile first mindset today may be jumping the gun a bit. However, given the rate of mobile search growth as reported by Google, and where the number is today, it’s likely that your sample (however large) is not representative of opportunity in the market, and shouldn’t be used as such.

  • http://www.facebook.com/matt.vanwagner1 Matt Van Wagner

    Great post, Nathan. Thank you!

    Interesting discussion on mobile. Certainly there are market segments where mobile is at critical mass now and should be high priority investment, especially since it takes months to get experience and learning and the market is clearly rising.

    But in general, I agree with Nathan, as to the prioritization of mobile vs. other important initiatives.

    Here’s a my observation of some early data we’ve been accumulating on mobile (smart phone) websites.

    I believe that we are seeing poorer conversion performance for non-brand terms and equal or slightly better performance on brand terms when smartphone users visit a mobile version a website.

    There are lots of variables, including thinning of content and navigation on the mobile site, and other things we don’t understand quite yet, but it makes intuitive sense to me that someone early in the buying process prefers consuming more detailed information on a desktop site, while the brand term searcher, who is more transactionally-oriented will use their mobile phone for that purpose (to the extent that the conversion is as easy or easier on the mobile site vs. the desktop version).

    Anybody seeing the same trend? Different Tren?

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    People like to pretend they do link earning rather than link building. The people winning are doing both.

  • http://twitter.com/CoffyGroup Coffy Group

    Thanks for your insights, Nathan. This article would serve as a good resource to check back on next year for our efforts. To add though, I think citation will become something “hot” in 2013. With respect to Google AuthorRank, having your business NAP listed across the internet will boost up your SEO ROI.

  • http://twitter.com/Nathan_Safran Nathan Safran

    Thanks for the comment Matt and for your observations re what you are seeing with mobile. I’ll let others jump in what they are seeing in that regard.

  • http://www.stoneig.com/ Matt Roney

    I would add that the differences in how users use mobile versus how they use desktop and laptop computers also justifies a certain degree of effort optimizing specifically for mobile. It’s fair to assume that a user searching from a desktop computer on Google and a user searching from a desktop computer on Yahoo have goals that are far more similar than to anyone using either engine from a mobile device.

  • http://www.q3tech.com/database.html Database Management System

    Great set of information provided Nathan. This is a well-known fact about the recently changed strategies in SEO that targeting mobile users and focus on the quality content highlights your company and influences your overall ranking in SERP.

    Keeping SERP as a base ground and than working upon with SEO strategies will bring no traffic and no reputation for the website instead it will only ruin your rankings.

  • Michaela McNamara

    What are some traffic trends for 2013? Already practicing SEO, blogging, PPC/CPV, Facebook… need some new diversified streams of traffic this year!