Mastering Search Analytics

Book description

Many companies still approach Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and paid search as separate initiatives. This in-depth guide shows you how to use these programs as part of a comprehensive strategy—not just to improve your site’s search rankings, but to attract the right people and increase your conversion rate.

Learn how to measure, test, analyze, and interpret all of your search data with a wide array of analytic tools. Gain the knowledge you need to determine the strategy’s return on investment. Ideal for search specialists, webmasters, and search marketing managers, Mastering Search Analytics shows you how to gain better traffic and more revenue through your search efforts.

  • Focus on conversion and usability—not on driving larger volumes of traffic
  • Track the performance of your SEO and paid search keywords
  • Apply techniques to monitor what your competitors are doing
  • Understand the differences between mobile and desktop search
  • Learn how social media impacts your search rankings and results
  • Audit your site for problems that can affect users and search spiders
  • Create dashboards and expanded reports for all of your search activities

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Table of contents

  1. Mastering Search Analytics
  2. Dedication
  3. Preface
    1. Audience
      1. Why Measuring Search Is Important
    2. Assumptions This Book Makes
    3. Contents of This Book
    4. Conventions Used in This Book
    5. Using Code Examples
    6. Safari® Books Online
    7. How to Contact Us
    8. Acknowledgments
  4. 1. Introduction to Search Analytics
    1. How Is Search Data Different from Clickstream Data?
    2. Who Are You Optimizing For?
    3. What Are Others Trying to Measure?
    4. What Do Companies Most Want to Measure?
    5. What Challenges Do Companies Face?
    6. Business Objectives
    7. What Auditing Tools Should I Be Using?
      1. Website Analytics
      2. Link Tracking
      3. Page Authority
      4. Ranking Position
      5. Keyword Search Volume and Competition
      6. Social Links and Social Noise
      7. Keyword Volume or Keyword Density on Page
      8. Mobile and Geographic Traffic Estimations
      9. Competitor Insights
      10. Multiuse Tools and Sites
      11. Spreadsheets
    8. An Explanation of Macro, Micro, Value, and Action Metrics
    9. Presenting Search Analytics—Who’s Your Audience?
    10. Setting Expectations
    11. Establishing What You Will Track
      1. What Website or Websites Do You Want to Monitor?
      2. What Keywords Do You Want to Track?
      3. What Keywords Are Considered Branded Terms?
      4. What Keywords Are Considered Nonbranded Terms?
    12. Concluding Thoughts
  5. 2. Establishing ROI
    1. ROI—The Universal Metric
      1. Capturing Actual ROI
      2. Capturing Estimated ROI
      3. Presenting ROI Data
      4. Why Search Matters to Sales Online and Offline
      5. The Problem of Only Capturing ROI
    2. Interpreting Data and Studies to Build a Case
      1. Where Do People Click in the Search Results?
        1. Universal search result click patterns
        2. Paid search result CTRs
        3. Comparing CTRs across all types of search
      2. What’s the Average Spend of SEO and Paid Search?
      3. What’s a Visit Worth?
      4. An Example of Calculating Values
      5. Quickly Identifying Bad Investments
    3. Paid Search and ROI
      1. How to Estimate ROI for Paid Search
      2. How to Capture and Track ROI for Paid Search
      3. Conversion Rates by Keyword
    4. SEO and ROI
      1. How to Estimate ROI for SEO
      2. Accounting for the Butterfly Effect in Your SEO
    5. Capturing ROI for Site Search
    6. Tracking Offline Sales
    7. Concluding Thoughts
  6. 3. Tracking and Optimizing SEO and Paid Search Traffic
    1. Tracking Visitors and Segmenting Traffic from Search
      1. Segmenting and Tracking Offline Transactions
      2. Using Campaign Segmentation Data
        1. Segmenting programs by actions
    2. Tracking Pathing Through the Site
      1. High Bounce Rates
      2. Low Bounce, High Site Search
      3. Low Bounce, High Pathing Exit
      4. Using Pathing and Bounce Data
    3. Landing Page Optimization
      1. A/B and Multivariate Testing
        1. A/B testing in a nutshell
        2. Multivariate testing in a nutshell
      2. Running a Multivariate Test
      3. How Testing Improves Your Search Campaigns
    4. Measuring Engagement
      1. Example 1 of Engagement
      2. Example 2 of Engagement
      3. Engagement and Search Campaigns
    5. All Traffic Is Not Created Equal
    6. Volume of Traffic Versus Number of Conversions
    7. Traffic from Search Engines: Not All Engines Are Created Equal
    8. Seasonality and Traffic
    9. Is There Value in CTR?
    10. Capturing Traffic Volume Based on Positioning
    11. Tracking Mobile Traffic—SEO Versus Paid Search
    12. Tracking International Searches and Linguistics
    13. Optimizing Conversion Rates for SEO and Paid Search
    14. Concluding Thoughts
  7. 4. Tracking Words—SEO and Paid Search
    1. Tracking SEO Keywords
      1. Developing Keyword Clusters and Finding the Short Head and Long Tail
      2. Segmenting Keywords in Clusters
      3. Keyword Research for New Opportunities
      4. How Are People Finding Me Today?
    2. Tracking Paid Search Keywords
      1. Broad Match
      2. Phrase Match
      3. Exact Match
      4. Negative Keywords
      5. Tracking Broad Match Words
      6. Tracking Top-Performing Words and Underperforming Words
      7. Tracking Paid Search Quality Score
    3. Seasonality and Words
    4. Concluding Thoughts
  8. 5. Coordinating SEO and Paid Search
    1. Monitoring CTR from Paid Search and Applying Your Findings to SEO
    2. A/B and Multivariate Testing—Applying Insights from the Paid Search Page to SEO
    3. Testing Titles and Descriptions in Paid Search
    4. Finding Your Gaps and Plugging Them with SEO or Paid Search
    5. Running SEO and Paid Search Together
    6. When 1 + 1 = 3, and When It Doesn’t
    7. Concluding Thoughts
  9. 6. Site Search Analytics
    1. Site Search as Navigation
    2. Establishing Your Site Search KPIs
      1. Capturing Terms with High Exits
      2. Capturing Secondary Searches
      3. Capturing Pages with High Searches
      4. Capturing Pages with High or Low Success Rates
      5. Tracking Special Campaigns
      6. Tracking Spider Volume
    3. What Is the Value of Your Site Search?
    4. CRO for Site Search
      1. Search and Refinement
      2. Language Use
      3. Depth of Search
      4. Repetition of Search
      5. Average Ranking Clicked
    5. Tracking Trends
    6. Site Search Seasonality
    7. Concluding Thoughts
  10. 7. Correlating SEO/Paid Search and Site Search
    1. Pulling Terms from Site Search for SEO/Paid Search
    2. Applying Site Search Patterns to SEO/Paid Search
    3. Site Search—Capturing and Using the Second Term
    4. Testing Paid Search Pages on Site Search First
    5. Pulling Terms from SEO/Paid Search to Improve Site Search
    6. Testing the Effects of Optimization on Site Search and SEO
    7. Concluding Thoughts
  11. 8. Competitor Research and Competitor Tracking
    1. Tracking Share of Voice
      1. Refining Share of Voice
    2. Tracking Against Competitors
    3. Capturing Competitors’ Keywords
      1. Mining Metadata
      2. Mining Links
      3. Mining Footers
    4. Capitalizing on User Behavior
    5. Tracking Competitors’ Branded Keywords
    6. Capitalizing on Competitor Spikes and Marketing
    7. Tracking the Effectiveness of Your Competitors’ Marketing Through Metrics
    8. Brand Conquesting
    9. Concluding Thoughts
  12. 9. Tracking Off-Site Trends
    1. Analyze: Explaining the Bumps and Spikes
    2. Auditing General Trends
    3. Measuring Off-Site Link Diversity
      1. Webmaster Tools—What It Can Tell You
        1. The Site Keyword Report
        2. The Links to Your Site Report
        3. The Most Linked Pages Report
    4. Tracking Neighborhoods
    5. Tracking Diversity of Links
    6. Tracking Domain Rank and Page Rank
    7. Tracking External Campaigns (TV, Radio, Print)
    8. Tracking Social Volume and Social Media
    9. Tracking Changes in the SERP to Improve Clicks
    10. Concluding Thoughts
  13. 10. Tracking Mobile Search
    1. Do Desktop and Mobile Users Search the Same Way?
      1. Why Is This Important?
      2. Answering the Questions
    2. How Important Is Geography for Mobile Searchers?
    3. Do Mobile Searchers Return More or Less Frequently?
      1. Are Mobile Users as Site-Loyal as Desktop Users?
      2. Do Mobile Users Click Through Content at the Same Rate as Desktop Users?
    4. Tracking Paid Search on Mobile Devices
    5. Does Device Type Matter?
    6. Do Mobile Users Convert Better than Desktop Users?
    7. Concluding Thoughts
  14. 11. Social Media and Search
    1. Social Media’s Impact
    2. Social Personalization
    3. Measuring Facebook
    4. Measuring Twitter
    5. Measuring +1
    6. Concluding Thoughts
  15. 12. Webmaster Tools—Data Direct from the Engines
    1. The Basics
    2. Google Webmaster Tools
      1. Messages
      2. Sitemaps
      3. Crawler Access
      4. Settings
      5. Search Queries
      6. Links to Your Site
      7. Keywords
      8. Internal Links
      9. Crawl Errors
      10. Crawl Stats
      11. HTML Suggestions
      12. Fetch as Googlebot
      13. Site Performance
      14. Video Sitemaps
    3. Bing Webmaster Tools
      1. Dashboard
      2. Crawl
      3. Index
      4. Traffic
      5. Index Explorer
    4. Comparing Bing and Google
    5. Concluding Thoughts
  16. 13. An SEO Audit (On-Page Factors)
    1. Automating Issue Auditing
    2. How to Audit a Page for SEO Elements
      1. Section 508, Applying to SEO Audits
      2. HTML to Look For
    3. Auditing a Page for Engagement Tracking
    4. Performance Monitoring: The Speed of Your Pages
      1. Make Fewer HTTP Requests
      2. Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
      3. Avoid Empty src or href
      4. Add Expires Headers
      5. Put CSS at Top
      6. Put JavaScript at Bottom
      7. Avoid CSS Expressions
      8. Make JavaScript and CSS External
      9. Reduce DNS Lookups
      10. Minify JavaScript and CSS
      11. Avoid URL Redirects
      12. Remove Duplicate JavaScript and CSS
      13. Configure Entity Tags (ETags)
      14. Make AJAX Cacheable
      15. Use GET for AJAX Requests
      16. Reduce the Number of DOM Elements
      17. Avoid HTTP 404 (Not Found) Errors
      18. Reduce Cookie Size
      19. Use Cookie-Free Domains
      20. Avoid AlphaImageLoader Filter
      21. Do Not Scale Images in HTML
      22. Make Favicon Small and Cacheable
    5. Detecting Template Issues Versus Page Issues
    6. Auditing a Page for Keywords
    7. Auditing a Page for Placement in Your Site’s Information Architecture
    8. Finding the Bad Stuff—404s, 302s, Multiple 301s, and More
      1. Dealing with Flash
      2. Dealing with AJAX
      3. Detecting Duplicate Content
    9. Concluding Thoughts
  17. 14. Dashboards and Reports
    1. Know Your Audience
    2. Understand Why Data Is Important to You
      1. Who Is This Data About?
      2. What Does This Data Tell Us?
      3. When Did These Changes Occur?
      4. Where on Your Site Was the Impact Felt?
      5. Why Did This Occur? Why Is This Important?
      6. How Can We Learn from This?
    3. Understand Why Data Is Important to Your Audience
    4. Segment! Segment! Segment!
    5. Dashboards for Executives
    6. Dashboards for Creating Action
    7. Dashboards Versus One-Off Reports
    8. Distributing Dashboards
    9. Building and Telling Stories with Dashboards
    10. One Metric (Why Leading with One Stat Can Create Action)
    11. Information Paralysis—When Too Much Info Creates Inaction
    12. Concluding Thoughts
  18. 15. Building Your Own Audit Tools and Enabling Others
    1. Rubrics—How to Make Them
    2. Answering Questions with Analytics
    3. Simplify Your Results
    4. Linking Data Sources
    5. Creating Alerts and Triggers, Creating Response Plans
    6. Overriding Your Alerts: Why and When
    7. Checklists of Items to Have for Setting Up an Analytics Plan
    8. Building Out Timelines
    9. Establishing Roles
    10. Being OK with Numbers Going Down
    11. Concluding Thoughts
  19. A. Tool Listing
    1. Software Listings
      1. Website Analytics
        1. Google Analytics
        2. Adobe SiteCatalyst
        3. Other options
      2. Link Tracking
        1. Web CEO
        2. Majestic SEO
        3. SEOmoz Open Site Explorer (formerly Linkscape)
        4. Other options
      3. Page Authority
        1. Google PageRank
        2. mozRank
        3. mozTrust
      4. Ranking Position
        1. SEO Rank Monitor
        2. WebPosition
        3. AdGooroo Paid Search Insight
        4. Google Webmaster Tools
        5. Other options
      5. Keyword Search Volume and Competition
        1. Google AdWords Keyword Tool
        2. Trellian Keyword Discovery
        3. Wordtracker
        4. Google Global Market Finder
        5. Other options
      6. Social Links and Social Noise
        1. SM2
        2. Radian6
        3. Addict-o-matic
        4. Other options
      7. Keyword Volume or Keyword Density on Page
        1. SEO Book Keyword Density Analyzer Tool
        2. SEOmoz Term Extractor
        3. KGen for Firefox
        4. Other options
      8. Mobile and Geographic Traffic Estimations
        1. Google AdWords Keyword Tool
        2. Google Global Market Finder
      9. Competitor Insights
        1. Compete
        2. Hitwise
        3. Google Trends for websites
        4. Other options
      10. Surveys—Qualitative Data
        1. Survey Monkey
        2. 4Q (iPerceptions)
      11. Multiuse Tools and Sites
        1. SEOmoz
        2. Web CEO
        3. SEO Book
        4. ClickEquations
        5. Enterprise options
  20. Index
  21. About the Author
  22. Colophon
  23. Copyright

Product information

  • Title: Mastering Search Analytics
  • Author(s): Brent Chaters
  • Release date: October 2011
  • Publisher(s): O'Reilly Media, Inc.
  • ISBN: 9781449319076