Programming Data Collection For SEO Research

Last month, I showed you three tricks I use when gathering data on websites. I used these techniques to download webpages into a local folder. In and of themselves, these procedures are not SEO; however, a search engine optimization professional working on a large or enterprise website ought to know how to do this. In this article, I'll show you how to: Make a list of pages inside a folder Set up a development environment Open webpages from a script and extract data If you learn these procedures, I am certain you will find legitimate opportunities to use each, together or alone [...]

Optimizing Your Digital Assets To Boost Rankings & Branding

Let’s say you’re responsible for developing revenues from both traditional and non-traditional advertising. You work with a digital staff of talented people to create lead-generating Web-based content, or perhaps you are in e-commerce and sell products. Maybe you’re a brick and mortar with a website, or perhaps a pure-play Internet business with no physical storefronts. Regardless of whether you are a newspaper (publisher), e-commerce (products) or franchise (services) site, performing well within the SERPs will always lead to new customer acquisition. By identifying and optimizing al [...]

How to Automate AdWords Ad Creation & Landing Page Checks

Automating AdWords as much as possible is every advertiser’s dream, especially when dealing with the massive accounts we see in enterprise-level SEM. This article provides a few examples of how we at Top Tier Marketing have automated some of the more laborious tasks of running AdWords. Hopefully, these examples will give you some ideas for your own accounts. There’s even a full script that should work by simply copying it into your own account toward the end of this post.  Automate AdWords Ad Creation From Your Catalog [caption id="attachment_158965" align="alignright" width="212"] F [...]

How To Conduct Ad Tests In Enhanced Campaigns

Enhanced campaigns have brought about many changes to AdWords. One of the biggest changes yet to be discussed is the fact that your ad testing methods will have to change. One of the “features” of enhanced campaigns is that your campaign can now run on desktops and mobile devices with different CPCs that are controlled by bid modifiers. However, since your ads can be run on multiple devices at the same time, you need to test your ad metrics by device. This can easily be accomplished with device preference and Excel filters. First, let’s discuss why this change needs to occur, and t [...]

Web Analytics Software Comparison: Identifying The Right Web Analytics Tools For Your Business

If you’re considering using an analytics platform other than, or in addition to, Google Analytics, it can be a bit difficult to determine what the best alternative will be. Search Engine Land compiled a great buyers guide to enterprise web analytics tools, but what if you’re in the market for a free to mid-level tool, or don’t even know yet exactly what type of software you need? Analytics Software Solutions Below is a brief overview of 25 analytics software options (and one add-on) that should give you an idea of what each tool costs and what functionality each offers. Before you chec [...]

Managing The Bounds Of Profitability: iCPA & iCPC

In my previous post, From 3rd Party To 1st Party: The Evolution Of The Google Advertising Toolset, I wrote about the evolution of AdWords data and how recent changes have constricted the incremental value presented by third-party paid search tools. I wrote in loose terms about using internal analytics to calculate average profit per conversion to use in AdWords Conversion Optimizer. In this post, I will detail the logic behind and process of incorporating margins into bidding at the CPA and CPC level, in case you prefer manual bid management to cost-per-acquisition based management. Depe [...]

How To Increase Lead Conversions With Visitor Engagement

When the iPhone was first released, everyone marveled over its amazing simplicity and user experience. The world fell in love, and the mobile industry was changed overnight. Other phones, if they weren't smartphones, were suddenly viewed as cheap and not very useful. We have all experienced this same truth at the websites we visit. We inherently equate a great design with an upstanding company and a bad design with a company not quite as reputable or as good. [caption id="attachment_158424" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Image via Shutterstock[/caption] Because of this reality, buil [...]

The Ultimate Guide to Multilingual and Multiregional SEO

When you begin to get into multilingual and multiregional SEO, you know that you have taken a step forward as an SEO expert. Why? Well, because you are probably dealing with a large, complex site that demands the expertise of someone who knows what they are talking about. If you are dealing in multilingual or multinational SEO, then you are managing a complex website strategy that serves multiple locations and languages -- not just one. Lucky for you, most everything you need to know about multilingual and multiregional SEO is listed in this post. So, even if you are a first-timer, you now [...]

Using Advanced Segments & Scroll Depth To Test Content Types In Analytics

sel_advanced_segment_10 Last month, I gave readers some tips on measuring engagement using Google Analytics and WordPress. This month, I want to dig deeper into how you can use content scroll depth to help craft a strategy for your future content curating efforts. Creating a website that attracts visitors via search engine optimization is one part of the equation; engaging the users to read your content, search and come back for more is another facet of online marketing. As I explained last week, I do think how well people engage with your content may be, or may become, a type of ranking factor. It would at least [...]

How To Get Links By Writing About Other People

People usually love talking about themselves, and most people are naturally interested in the intricacies of others, whether it's business or personal. When you do an interview or put together a crowdsourced piece (and yes, I know many of you hate that term!) you're linking to the people involved. At first, this may seem counter-intuitive to earning links for yourself -- however, linking out to influential people while pumping out great content can be one of the best link building tactics out there, and here's why: Some people find it easier to promote themselves indirectly. By promo [...]

Deduplicate Your Google Analytics Reports in Excel

One of the steps in my last post on finding 404 pages worth saving involved determining if any of your404 pages received traffic in the past year. This can be accomplished by pulling a landing page report and using VLOOKUPs in Excel to see any of your broken pages used to receive traffic. However, Google Analytics (GA) content reports are case sensitive, so you might have multiple versions of what should be a single line item because of this. For example, /default.aspx and /Default.aspx are considered two different pages in Google Analytics. If you're used to exporting your content or landi [...]

Building A Macro To Download Webpages With Excel

When conducting research, it's not uncommon to perform repetitive tasks like downloading a group of webpages. A favorite tool I use to automate this is iMacros -- it's free and powerful. Just be sure to use the Firefox version, as its capabilities are limited in other browsers. Say you want a list of the Fortune 500 companies' websites. Normally, this would be an arduous task. CNN's Fortune magazine website links to the websites, but you have to visit every company profile on a separate page. Watch what I do with a spreadsheet and a macro. Get a list of company page URLs from the CNN Mon [...]

The Informational Content Advantage

You may have heard that content is king, but the truth is that informational content is king. It's estimated that approximately 50-80% of search queries are informational in nature (pdf). Most websites have very little informational content on them, preferring instead to focus on driving a conversion. These websites are missing an excellent opportunity to capture search market share. Ratios of Informational Content In previous articles, I've written about the importance of theming content -- developing a strategy that truly plays to your customers' search intent. But usually, very little [...]

7 Landing Page Tests You Can Run Tomorrow!

For many years, I've been participating in sessions/panels in which I critique PPC landing pages volunteered by audience members. As crowds go wild for this type of session, I've decided to use this space to focus on effective landing page elements and provide several examples thereof. #1 Use Credibility Indicators Include credibility indicators on your landing page such as testimonials, reviews, awards, social media information (Facebook likes, number of tweets, etc.), and seller ratings (on Google, this info is pulled from Bizrate and other rating sites). Here are some specific ideas [...]

Conversational Marketing Benefits Local SEO

I began working for a particular type of traditional business industry recently, and I noticed that a great many of the small businesses operating within it were still proceeding as though it were pre-Internet days. They did promotions as though they were a one-way transmission instead of a dialogue. Unfortunately, that's not the only industry where this mindset persists. In order to achieve better sales, attract more potential customers, and, yes, improve your search engine rankings, you need to incorporate "Conversational Marketing" as a primary tactic. The Cluetrain Manifesto came out [...]

4 Ways To Take Your AdWords Scripts To The Next Level

Last week, I presented at HeroConf in Austin and shared some advanced tips for automating AdWords account management with an audience of PPC account managers. They seemed to like what I had to say; so, I’ll share a few of the more advanced scripting tips with you here. When you manage PPC accounts, you likely experience at least one of these two frustrations: You know exactly what you should be doing, but there aren’t enough hours in the day to get it done You’ve bought a tool that automates AdWords account management, but you find yourself locked into a cookie-cutter solution t [...]

Google Autocomplete: Your Personal Brand’s First Impression

billboard-brian-patterson-reputation-management-research Pop Quiz:  What is the first thing a searcher sees when they type your name into the Google search bar? If your answer was related webpages found in SERPs, you're wrong -- that would be the second thing. The first thing they see are the Autocomplete suggestions that drop down from the search bar. This is your true first impression! There are three basic facts of our Google-centric world: first, like it or not, we each represent the brand of our personal name; second, we are humans, and thus, we all make mistakes; and third, Google searches for individual names are tremendously popular [...]

How To Prep Your B2B Search Program For Google Enhanced Campaigns

According to the great Greek philosopher Heraclitus, change is the only constant. As you have most likely heard by now, Google is making major adjustments to its AdWords platform that will have sweeping changes to the ways and means of how you execute your search campaigns. For B2B search, this is going to have a specific impact on your programs, and getting ready for the coming changes will require a bit of forethought into how you maximize the results of your campaigns. In a realm like B2B, there is always the dual challenge of a diffuse customer base with ever changing needs and a lim [...]

The Holy Grail Of Internet Marketing: Owning The Whole SERP

[caption id="attachment_155242" align="alignright" width="250"] Photo from drp.Used under Creative Commons license.[/caption] In many ways, taking charge of your search engine results page is like answering the age-old philosophical question, “Who am I” -- but for your business. You may still be in the dark about what motivates some of your personal actions, but if you’re a business owner, I’m pretty certain you know exactly what your business is all about. That’s the first step. Now you need to translate that into Google results. Sound easy? Didn’t think so. It’s a bit [...]

Public Relations For SEO: How To Target Journalists

Public Relations for SEO A few years ago, I launched a website called FindHow, and we gave it a full-court press from a PR standpoint. In this series of articles, I’m running through all the best practices we leveraged. In the first part of Public Relations For SEO: The Complete Guide, we talked about how to convince journalists that your topic is newsworthy by properly “positioning” your product or service, and then delved into the basics of writing a press release. Part 2 continues with strategies for targeting journalists and tips for scheduling your announcement. Pick A Strategy To Target Journalists [...]

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