The Art of SEO, 2nd Edition

Book description

Four acknowledged experts in search engine optimization share guidelines and innovative techniques that will help you plan and execute a comprehensive SEO strategy. This second edition brings you up to date on recent changes in search engine behavior—such as new ranking methods involving user engagement and social media—with an array of effective tactics, from basic to advanced.

  • Comprehend SEO’s many intricacies and complexities
  • Explore the underlying theory and inner workings of search engines
  • Understand the role of social media, user data, and links
  • Discover tools to track results and measure success
  • Recognize how changes to your site can confuse search engines
  • Learn to build a competent SEO team with defined roles
  • Glimpse the future of search and the SEO industry

Visit for late-breaking updates, checklists, worksheets, templates, and guides.

"SEO expertise is a core need for today’s online businesses. Written by some of the top SEO practitioners out there, this book can teach you what you need to know for your online business."
—Tony Hsieh, CEO of, Inc., author of New York Times bestseller Delivering Happiness

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Table of contents

  1. The Art of SEO
  2. Dedication
  3. Foreword
  4. Preface
    1. Who Should Read This Book
    2. Conventions Used in This Book
    3. Using Code Examples
    4. Safari® Books Online
    5. How to Contact Us
    6. Acknowledgments
  5. 1. Search: Reflecting Consciousness and Connecting Commerce
    1. The Mission of Search Engines
    2. The Market Share of Search Engines
    3. The Human Goals of Searching
      1. Who Searches and What Do They Search For?
    4. Determining Searcher Intent: A Challenge for Both Marketers and Search Engines
      1. Navigational Queries
      2. Informational Queries
      3. Transactional Queries
      4. Adaptive Search
      5. How Publishers Can Leverage Intent
    5. How People Search
    6. How Search Engines Drive Commerce on the Web
    7. Eye Tracking: How Users Scan Results Pages
    8. Click Tracking: How Users Click on Results, Natural Versus Paid
      1. Distribution of Search Results and Traffic
      2. Different Intents and Effects of Listings in Paid Versus Natural Results
      3. Interaction Between Natural and Paid Search
    9. Conclusion
  6. 2. Search Engine Basics
    1. Understanding Search Engine Results
      1. Understanding the Layout of Search Results Pages
      2. How Vertical Results Fit into the SERPs
    2. Algorithm-Based Ranking Systems: Crawling, Indexing, and Ranking
      1. Crawling and Indexing
      2. Retrieval and Rankings
      3. Evaluating Content on a Web Page
      4. What Content Can Search Engines “See” on a Web Page?
        1. What search engines cannot see
    3. Determining Searcher Intent and Delivering Relevant, Fresh Content
      1. Document Analysis and Semantic Connectivity
      2. Measuring Content Quality and User Engagement
      3. Link Analysis
      4. Evaluating Social Media Signals
      5. Problem Words, Disambiguation, and Diversity
        1. Where freshness matters
      6. A Few Reasons Why These Algorithms Sometimes Fail
    4. Analyzing Ranking Factors
      1. Negative Ranking Factors
      2. Other Ranking Factors
    5. Using Advanced Search Techniques
      1. Advanced Google Search Operators
        1. Combined Google queries
        2. Firefox plug-ins for quicker access to Google advanced search queries
      2. Bing Advanced Search Operators
      3. More Advanced Search Operator Techniques
        1. Determining keyword difficulty
        2. Using number ranges
        3. Advanced doc type searches
        4. Determining listing age
        5. Uncovering subscriber-only or deleted content
        6. Identifying neighborhoods
        7. Finding Creative Commons (CC) licensed content
    6. Vertical Search Engines
      1. Vertical Search from the Major Search Engines
        1. Image search
        2. Video search
        3. News search
        4. Local search/maps
        5. Blog search
        6. Book search
        7. Shopping search
      2. Universal Search/Blended Search
        1. Meta search
        2. More specialized vertical search engines
    7. Country-Specific Search Engines
      1. Optimizing for Specific Countries
    8. Conclusion
  7. 3. Determining Your SEO Objectives and Defining Your Site’s Audience
    1. Strategic Goals SEO Practitioners Can Fulfill
      1. Visibility (Branding)
      2. Website Traffic
      3. High ROI
    2. Every SEO Plan Is Custom
    3. Understanding Search Engine Traffic and Visitor Intent
    4. Developing an SEO Plan Prior to Site Development
      1. Business Factors That Affect the SEO Plan
    5. Understanding Your Audience and Finding Your Niche
      1. Mapping Your Products and Services
      2. Content Is King
      3. Segmenting Your Site’s Audience
    6. SEO for Raw Traffic
    7. SEO for Ecommerce Sales
    8. SEO for Mindshare/Branding
    9. SEO for Lead Generation and Direct Marketing
    10. SEO for Reputation Management
    11. SEO for Ideological Influence
      1. Advanced Methods for Planning and Evaluation
        1. SWOT analysis
        2. Get SMART
    12. Conclusion
  8. 4. First Stages of SEO
    1. The Major Elements of Planning
      1. Technology Choices
      2. Market Segmentation
      3. Where You Can Find Great Links
      4. Content Resources
      5. Branding Considerations
      6. Competition
    2. Identifying the Site Development Process and Players
    3. Defining Your Site’s Information Architecture
      1. Technology Decisions
      2. Structural Decisions
        1. Target keywords
        2. Cross-link relevant content
        3. Use anchor text
        4. Use breadcrumb navigation
        5. Minimize link depth
    4. Auditing an Existing Site to Identify SEO Problems
      1. Elements of an Audit
        1. Usability
        2. Accessibility/spiderability
        3. Search engine health check
        4. Keyword health checks
        5. Duplicate content checks
        6. URL check
        7. Title tag review
        8. Content review
        9. Meta tag review
        10. Sitemaps file and robots.txt file verification
        11. Redirect checks
        12. Internal linking checks
        13. Avoidance of unnecessary subdomains
        14. Geolocation
        15. External linking
        16. Page load time
        17. Image alt tags
        18. Code quality
      2. The Importance of Keyword Reviews
        1. Step 1: Keyword research
        2. Step 2: Site architecture
        3. Step 3: Keyword mapping
        4. Step 4: Site review
      3. Keyword Cannibalization
      4. Example: Fixing an Internal Linking Problem
      5. Server and Hosting Issues
    5. Identifying Current Server Statistics Software and Gaining Access
      1. Web Analytics
      2. Logfile Tracking
      3. Google and Bing Webmaster Tools
      4. Search Analytics
    6. Determining Top Competitors
      1. Two Spam Examples
      2. Seeking the Best
      3. Uncovering Their Secrets
    7. Assessing Historical Progress
      1. Maintain a Timeline of Site Changes
      2. Types of Site Changes That Can Affect SEO
      3. Previous SEO Work
    8. Benchmarking Current Indexing Status
    9. Benchmarking Current Rankings
    10. Benchmarking Current Traffic Sources and Volume
    11. Leveraging Business Assets for SEO
      1. Other Domains You Own/Control
      2. Partnerships On and Off the Web
      3. Content or Data You’ve Never Put Online
      4. Customers Who Have Had a Positive Experience
      5. Your Fans
    12. Combining Business Assets and Historical Data to Conduct SEO/Website SWOT Analysis
    13. Conclusion
  9. 5. Keyword Research
    1. Thinking Strategically
    2. Understanding the Long Tail of the Keyword Demand Curve
    3. Traditional Approaches: Domain Expertise, Site Content Analysis
      1. Include Competitive Analysis
    4. Keyword Research Tools
      1. Things to Keep in Mind
      2. Keyword Research Data from the Engines
        1. Blog search counts
        2. Related terms
        3. Common usage and phrase combinations
        4. Frequency of recent usage
      3. Keyword Research with Tools
        1. Google’s AdWords Keyword Tool and Traffic Estimator
          1. What the Keyword Tool provides
          2. What the Traffic Estimator provides
          3. Where the tools get their data
          4. How the tools are useful
          5. Cost
        2. Microsoft’s adCenter Keyword Generation Tool
          1. Where it gets its data
          2. How it is useful
          3. Cost
        3. Wordtracker
          1. Where it gets its data
          2. How it is useful
          3. Cost
        4. KeywordDiscovery
          1. Where it gets its data
          2. How it is useful
          3. Cost
        5. Google Trends
          1. Where it gets its data
          2. How it is useful
          3. Cost
        6. Experian Hitwise
          1. Where it gets its data
          2. How it is useful
          3. Cost
        7. comScore Search Planner
          1. What it provides
          2. Where it gets its data
          3. How it is useful
          4. Cost
        8. Wordstream
          1. What it provides
          2. Where it gets its data
          3. How it is useful
          4. Cost
      4. Other Tools of Interest
        1. Quintura
        2. Google (Suggest)
        3. Soovle
        4. YouTube Suggest
        5. Ubersuggest
    5. Determining Keyword Value/Potential ROI
      1. Estimating Value, Relevance, and Conversion Rates
        1. Determining keyword value
        2. Identifying relevant keywords
        3. Determining conversion rates
      2. Testing Ad Campaign Runs and Third-Party Search Data
      3. Using Landing Page Optimization
    6. Leveraging the Long Tail of Keyword Demand
      1. Extracting Terms from Relevant Web Pages
      2. Mining Keyword Research Tools
      3. Identifying Long-Tail Patterns
      4. Editorial Content Strategies for Long-Tail Targeting
      5. User-Generated Content Strategies for Long-Tail Targeting
    7. Trending, Seasonality, and Seasonal Fluctuations in Keyword Demand
    8. Conclusion
  10. 6. Developing an SEO-Friendly Website
    1. Making Your Site Accessible to Search Engines
      1. Indexable Content
      2. Spiderable Link Structures
      3. XML Sitemaps
        1. Layout of an XML Sitemap
        2. What to include in a Sitemap file
        3. Mobile Sitemaps
        4. Video Sitemaps
        5. Image Sitemaps
        6. Where to upload your Sitemap file
        7. Managing and updating XML Sitemaps
          1. Updating your Sitemap with Bing
          2. Updating your Google Sitemap
    2. Creating an Optimal Information Architecture (IA)
      1. The Importance of a Logical, Category-Based Flow
        1. Usability and search friendliness
        2. An analogy
          1. Subdomains
          2. Redirects
          3. URLs
      2. Site Architecture Design Principles
        1. Designing site architecture
        2. Category structuring
          1. Topical relevance
        3. Taxonomy and ontology
      3. Flat Versus Deep Architecture
      4. Search-Friendly Site Navigation
        1. Basics of search engine friendliness
        2. Site elements that are problematic for spiders
          1. Search and web forms
          2. Java, images, audio, and video
          3. AJAX and JavaScript
          4. Frames
        3. Search engine–friendly navigation guidelines
    3. Root Domains, Subdomains, and Microsites
      1. When to Use a Subfolder
      2. When to Use a Subdomain
      3. When to Use a Separate Root Domain
      4. Microsites
        1. Making the case for microsites
      5. When to Use a TLD Other than .com
    4. Optimization of Domain Names/URLs
      1. Optimizing Domains
      2. Picking the Right URLs
    5. Keyword Targeting
      1. Title Tags
      2. Meta Description Tags
      3. Heading (H1, H2, H3) Tags
      4. Document Text
      5. Image Filenames and alt Attributes
      6. Boldface Text
      7. Avoiding Keyword Cannibalization
      8. Keyword Targeting in CMSs and Automatically Generated Content
      9. SEO Copywriting: Encouraging Effective Keyword Targeting by Content Creators
      10. Long-Tail Keyword Targeting
    6. Content Optimization
      1. Content Structure
        1. Content length and word count
        2. Visual layout
      2. CSS and Semantic Markup
      3. and Microformats
        1. Markup in search results
        2. Supported types of markup
        3. Impact of rich snippets
      4. Content Uniqueness and Depth
        1. A word of caution to affiliates
      5. Content Themes
    7. Duplicate Content Issues
      1. Consequences of Duplicate Content
      2. How Search Engines Identify Duplicate Content
      3. Identifying and Addressing Copyright Infringement
        1. An actual penalty situation
      4. How to Avoid Duplicate Content on Your Own Site
    8. Controlling Content with Cookies and Session IDs
      1. What’s a Cookie?
      2. What Are Session IDs?
      3. How Do Search Engines Interpret Cookies and Session IDs?
      4. Why Would You Want to Use Cookies or Session IDs to Control Search Engine Access?
    9. Content Delivery and Search Spider Control
      1. Cloaking and Segmenting Content Delivery
      2. When to Show Different Content to Engines and Visitors
      3. How to Display Different Content to Search Engines and Visitors
        1. The robots.txt file
          1. Syntax of the robots.txt file
        2. The rel="NoFollow” attribute
        3. The meta robots tag
        4. The canonical tag
        5. Blocking and cloaking by IP address range
        6. Blocking and cloaking by user agent
        7. Using iframes
        8. Hiding text in images
        9. Hiding text in Java applets
        10. Forcing form submission
        11. Using login/password protection
        12. Removing URLs from a search engine’s index
    10. Redirects
      1. Why and When to Redirect
      2. Good and Bad Redirects
      3. Methods for URL Redirecting and Rewriting
        1. mod_rewrite and ISAPI_Rewrite for URL rewriting and redirecting
      4. Redirecting a Home Page Index File Without Looping
        1. The default document redirect solution
    11. Content Management System (CMS) Issues
      1. Selecting a CMS
      2. Third-Party CMS Add-ons
      3. Flash
      4. Flash Coding Best Practices
        1. Flash meta tags
        2. Adobe Flash Search Engine SDK
        3. Internal Flash coding
        4. SWFObject and NoScript tags
          1. SWFObject
          2. NoScript
        5. Scalable Inman Flash Replacement (sIFR)
    12. Best Practices for Multilanguage/Country Targeting
      1. Targeting a Specific Country
      2. Problems with Using Your Existing Domain
      3. The Two Major Approaches
      4. Multiple-Language Issues
    13. Conclusion
  11. 7. Creating Link-Worthy Content and Link Marketing
    1. How Links Influence Search Engine Rankings
      1. The Original PageRank Algorithm
      2. Additional Factors That Influence Link Value
        1. Anchor text
        2. Relevance
        3. Authority
        4. Trust
      3. How Search Engines Use Links
    2. Further Refining How Search Engines Judge Links
      1. Additional Link Evaluation Criteria
        1. Source independence
        2. Linking domains
        3. Source diversity
        4. Temporal factors
        5. Context/relevance
        6. Source TLDs
      2. Determining a Link’s Value
    3. The Psychology of Linking
      1. Why Are Links Created?
      2. How Can Sites Approach Getting Links?
    4. Types of Link Building
      1. Using Content to Attract Links
      2. Marketing Content for Link Acquisition
      3. Directories
        1. What search engines want from directories
        2. Classifying directories
        3. Detecting directories that pass link juice
      4. Incentive-Based Link Requests
        1. Giveaways
        2. Dangerous tactics
      5. Direct Link Requests
        1. Creating a value proposition for direct requests
        2. Basic email pitch
      6. Manual Social Media Link Creation
      7. Gray Hat/Black Hat
        1. Buying links for SEO
          1. Google’s policy on paid links
          2. Methods for buying links
          3. Strategies that are not considered buying links
        2. Link farms/link networks
        3. Automated link dropping
        4. Spammy giveaways
        5. NoFollow uses and scams
    5. Choosing the Right Link-Building Strategy
      1. Outline of a Process
        1. Identify types of sites that might link to a site like yours
        2. Find out where your competitors get links
        3. Review your website assets
        4. Identify any strategic limitations
        5. Identify methods for contacting potential linkers
      2. Link-Building Process Summary
      3. Putting It All Together
        1. Execute aggressively
        2. Conduct regular strategic reviews
        3. Create a link-building culture
        4. Never stop
    6. More Approaches to Content-Based Link Acquisition
      1. A Closer Look at Content Syndication
      2. Leveraging User-Generated Content
      3. Creating Link Bait/Viral Content
        1. Coming up with link bait ideas
        2. How far should you go with link bait?
        3. Encourage link bait to spread virally
    7. Incentive-Based Link Marketing
      1. Helping Other Sites Boost Their Value
      2. Offering Customer Discounts/Incentives
    8. How Search Engines Fight Link Spam
      1. Algorithmic Approaches to Fighting Link Spam
      2. Other Search Engine Courses of Action
    9. Social Networking for Links
      1. Blogging for Links
      2. Leveraging Social News and Tagging Sites
      3. Forum and Social Network Participation
      4. Offline Relationship Building
      5. Some Success Stories Using YouTube
      6. Social Media Tips for More Sites
        1. Wikipedia
        2. Wikis
        3. Flickr
        5. Facebook
        6. Google+
        7. Twitter
        8. Specialty social networks
      7. Social Media Summary
    10. Conclusion
  12. 8. How Social Media and User Data Play a Role in Search Results and Rankings
    1. Why Rely on Social Signals?
      1. Social Media Signals Provide New Tools
    2. Social Signals That Directly Influence Search Results
      1. Tweeted Links Are Similar to Web Page Links
        1. How big a ranking factor are Tweets?
      2. Facebook Shares/Links as a Ranking Factor
        1. Facebook authority is also important
      3. Facebook Likes Are Votes, Too
      4. Google+ Shares as a Ranking Factor
        1. Google+ Sparks
      5. Google +1s Are Also an Endorsement
    3. The Indirect Influence of Social Media Marketing
      1. Social Search Features from Google and Bing
        1. Google+ personal profiles
        2. Google+ Business Pages
        3. Impact of Google+ on Google Rankings
        4. Bing’s “social search”
        5. Bing’s personalization with Facebook
      2. Summary of Social Sources to Consider
    4. Monitoring, Measuring, and Improving Social Media Marketing
      1. Best Practices and Recommendations for Social Media Marketing
      2. Claim Key Profiles
      3. Deciding on a New Social Network
      4. Tracking Social Media in Your Web Analytics
        1. Facebook
        2. Twitter
        3. LinkedIn
        4. Google+
        5. Reddit, StumbleUpon, Quora, Yelp, Flickr, Slideshare, and YouTube
        6. Blogs and forums
      5. Tools for Measuring Social Media Metrics
    5. User Engagement as a Measure of Search Quality
      1. How Google and Bing Collect Engagement Metrics
      2. Potential User Engagement Signals
      3. Voting Mechanisms
    6. Document Analysis
      1. Poor Editorial Quality
      2. Reading Level
      3. Keyword Stuffing/Lack of Synonyms
      4. Ad Density and Offensive Ads
      5. Sameness
      6. Page Speed
    7. Optimizing the User Experience to Improve SEO
      1. Step 1: Build a Survey
      2. Step 2: Send It to Your Customers/Potential Customers
      3. Step 3: Record Responses and Leverage Them to Build What the People Want
    8. Additional Social Media Resources
      1. Social Media Blogs
      2. Tools
    9. Conclusion
  13. 9. Optimizing for Vertical Search
    1. The Opportunities in Vertical Search
      1. Universal Search and Blended Search
      2. The Opportunity Unleashed
    2. Optimizing for Local Search
      1. Foundation: Check Your Local Listings
        1. Search engine local management portals
        2. Directories and aggregators
        3. Additional local info guides
      2. Introduction to Local Business Profiles
      3. Local Agency Management
      4. Optimizing Your Website for Local Search Engines
    3. Optimizing for Image Search
      1. Image Optimization Tips
      2. Optimizing Through Flickr and Other Image Sharing Sites
    4. Optimizing for Product Search
      1. Getting into Google Product Search
        1. Product search optimization
        2. Performance reporting
    5. Optimizing for News, Blog, and Feed Search
      1. RSS Feed Optimization
      2. RSS Feed Tracking and Measurement
      3. Media RSS (mRSS)
      4. Other RSS Optimization Considerations
      5. Blog Optimization
        1. Structural blog optimizations
        2. Optimizing your anchor text
        3. Sticky posts
        4. Author profile pages
        5. More blog optimization basics
        6. Links remain critical
        7. Can you do this?
      6. News Search Optimization
        1. Optimizing for news search
        2. Submission details
    6. Others: Mobile, Video/Multimedia Search
      1. Mobile Search
        1. User-agent detection
        2. Using the same URLs for your mobile site
        3. Setting up a mobile subdomain
        4. Common considerations for a mobile site
        5. Mobile SEO tools for creating mobile-ready sites
        6. Other mobile SEO tools
        7. Google resources for mobile SEO
      2. Video Search Optimization
        1. Other video optimization tips
        2. Publicizing your video
    7. Conclusion
  14. 10. Tracking Results and Measuring Success
    1. Why Measuring Success Is Essential to the SEO Process
      1. The Tracking Cycle: Produce, Launch, Measure, Refine
      2. How to Establish a Proper Baseline
      3. Using Analytics as a Business Case for SEO
    2. Measuring Search Traffic
      1. Basic Overview
      2. Selecting the Right Analytics Package
      3. Valuable SEO Data in Web Analytics
        1. Traffic by search engine
        2. Branded versus nonbranded traffic
        3. Traffic by keyword
        4. Number of pages getting search traffic
      4. Segmenting Search Traffic
      5. Referring Sites
      6. Using Analytics Dashboards
      7. A Deeper Look at Action Tracking
      8. Separating the Analytics Wheat from the Chaff
        1. Common analytics mistakes
    3. Tying SEO to Conversion and ROI
      1. Attribution
      2. Setting Up Analytics Software to Track Conversions
        1. Conversion tracking strategy
      3. Segmenting Campaigns and SEO Efforts by Conversion Rate
      4. Increasing Conversions
        1. The link bait bump
          1. Action tracking by referral source
      5. Determining Project ROI
        1. An alternate theory and calculation
    4. Competitive and Diagnostic Search Metrics
      1. Search Engine and Competitive Metrics
      2. Site Indexing Data
        1. Bing Webmaster Tools and Google Webmaster Tools
      3. Link Building, Link Tracking, and Link-Based Metrics (Including Anchor Text Analysis)
        1. Search engine–supplied tools
        2. Third-party link-measuring tools
          1. Open Site Explorer
          2. Majestic SEO
          3. Link Research Tools
          4. Raven Tools
          5. Link Builder and Link Galaxy
        3. Third-party link-building tools
          1. LinkMaps
          2. Conductor Searchlight
          3. Stone Temple Consulting LinkFocus
          4. Google Blog Search
          5. Exalead
        4. Measuring the value of a link
      4. Ranking
      5. Shelf space
      6. SEO Platforms
      7. Crawl Errors
        1. Tools from the search engines
        2. Third-party tools to check for crawl errors
      8. Tracking the Blogosphere
      9. Tracking Your Blog(s)
        1. Blog subscribers
        2. Blog links
        3. Google and Yahoo! Alerts
      10. Search Engine Robot Traffic Analysis
        1. What is crawl efficiency and why is it important?
        2. Google Webmaster Tools
        3. Altruik SEO platform
      11. Web Traffic Comparison
        1. Google Trends for Websites
        2. Alexa
        3. Compete
        4. Quantcast
      12. Temporal Link Growth Measurements
    5. Key Performance Indicators for Long-Tail SEO
      1. Tracking Duplicate Content
    6. Other Third-Party Tools
      1. SEO for Firefox
      2. UrlTrends
      3. SpyFu
      4. SEMRush
      5. Covario Organic Search Insight (OSI)
      6. Covario Organic Search Optimizer (OSO)
      7. Searchmetrics Essentials
    7. Conclusion
  15. 11. Domain Changes, Post-SEO Redesigns, and Troubleshooting
    1. The Basics of Moving Content
      1. Large-Scale Content Moves
      2. Mapping Content Moves
      3. Expectations for Content Moves
    2. Maintaining Search Engine Visibility During and After a Site Redesign
    3. Maintaining Search Engine Visibility During and After Domain Name Changes
      1. Unique Challenges of Domain Name Changes
      2. Pre-move Preparations
    4. Changing Servers
      1. Monitoring After Your Server Move
      2. Other Scenarios Similar to Server Moves
    5. Hidden Content
      1. Identifying Content That Engines Don’t See
      2. Identifying the Cause of Non-Spidering
        1. Blocked by robots.txt
        2. Blocked by the robots meta tag
        3. No direct links
        4. Requires form submission
        5. Session IDs
        6. Not enough link juice to remain in main indexes
      3. Hidden Content That May Be Viewed as Spam
        1. Unintentionally creating hidden text
    6. Spam Filtering and Penalties
      1. Recognizing Low-Quality Domains and Spam Sites
      2. Competitors Can Report You
      3. Duplicate Content
      4. Basic Rules for Spam-Free SEO
      5. Identifying Search Engine Penalties
      6. Reinclusion/Reconsideration Requests
    7. Content Theft
    8. Changing SEO Vendors or Staff Members
      1. Potential Problems
      2. Documenting SEO Actions and Progress
      3. Rapid Training
      4. Cleaning Up
    9. Conclusion
  16. 12. SEO Research and Study
    1. SEO Research and Analysis
      1. SEO Resources
        1. Websites
        2. Commentary from search engine employees
        3. Interpreting commentary
      2. SEO Testing
        1. Sample experimental approach
        2. Other useful SEO metrics
        3. Start with a hypothesis
      3. Analysis of Top-Ranking Sites and Pages
      4. Analysis of Algorithmic Differentiation Across Engines and Search Types
      5. The Importance of Experience
    2. Competitive Analysis
      1. Content Analysis
      2. Internal Link Structure and Site Architecture
      3. External Link Attraction Analysis
      4. What Is Their SEO Strategy?
      5. Competitive Analysis Summary
      6. Using Competitive Link Analysis Tools
      7. Competitive Analysis for Those with a Big Budget
    3. Using Search Engine–Supplied SEO Tools
      1. Search Engine Webmaster Tools
        1. Google Webmaster Tools
        2. Bing Webmaster Tools
    4. The SEO Industry on the Web
      1. Blogs
      2. Forums
      3. Communities in Social Networks
    5. Participation in Conferences and Organizations
    6. Conclusion
  17. 13. Build an In-House SEO Team, Outsource It, or Both?
    1. The Business of SEO
      1. Understand Your Market Opportunity
      2. Get Buy-in Across the Organization
      3. Lay the Groundwork
      4. Motivate Resources That Don’t Share Your Goals to Help You
      5. Progress Through the Stages of SEO Maturity
      6. Build an SEO team
    2. The Dynamics and Challenges of Using In-House Talent Versus Outsourcing
      1. The Value of In-House SEO
      2. The Value of Outsourced Solutions
      3. Leveraging SEO Knowledge in an Organization
    3. The Impact of Site Complexity on SEO Workload
    4. Solutions for Small Organizations
      1. In-House SEO Specialist
      2. Outsourced Agency/Consultant/Contractor
      3. Working with Limited Resources/Budget
        1. Basic low-budget SEO ideas
    5. Solutions for Large Organizations
      1. Contracting for Specialist Knowledge and Experience
      2. Applying SEO Recommendations Intelligently
    6. Hiring SEO Talent
      1. How to Select the Right SEO Practitioner
      2. Pitching the Person
      3. Sample Job Opening
      4. Making the Offer
    7. The Case for Working with an Outside Expert
      1. How to Best Leverage Outside Help
    8. Selecting an SEO Firm/Consultant
      1. Getting the Process Started
      2. Preparing a Request for Proposal (RFP)
        1. Step 1: Nominate a “point person” for the engagement
        2. Step 2: Define “needs” and “wants” using a decision matrix
        3. Step 3: Define your success metrics
        4. Step 4: Prepare to disclose all known influencing factors
        5. Step 5: Provide an estimated timeline and budget for project completion
        6. A sample RFP document outline
      3. Communicating with Candidate SEO Firms
      4. Making the Decision
    9. Mixing Outsourced SEO with In-House SEO Teams
    10. Building a Culture of SEO into Your Organization
    11. Conclusion
  18. 14. An Evolving Art Form: The Future of SEO
    1. The Ongoing Evolution of Search
      1. The Growth of Search Complexity
      2. Google’s Dominance
    2. More Searchable Content and Content Types
      1. Engines Will Make Crawling Improvements
      2. Engines Are Getting New Content Sources
      3. Multimedia Is Becoming Indexable
    3. Personalization, Localization, and User Influence on Search
      1. Determining User Intent
      2. User Interactions
      3. New Search Patterns
      4. Growing Reliance on the Cloud
    4. The Increasing Importance of Local, Mobile, and Voice Recognition Search
      1. Local Search
      2. Mobile Search
      3. Voice-Recognition Search
    5. Increased Market Saturation and Competition
    6. SEO as an Enduring Art Form
    7. Conclusion
  19. Glossary
  20. Index
  21. About the Authors
  22. Colophon
  23. Copyright

Product information

  • Title: The Art of SEO, 2nd Edition
  • Author(s): Rand Fishkin, Eric Enge, Stephan Spencer, Jessie Stricchiola
  • Release date: March 2012
  • Publisher(s): O'Reilly Media, Inc.
  • ISBN: 9781449304218