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2014 State of Search Update: 5 Significant Highlights

2014 State of Search Update: Sunday Mo Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Saturday 1 2 3 4 5 5 Significant Highlights 7 13 20 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 31 We're now nearing the end of 2014. It's a great time to take a look at what transpired in the past few months and determine where we are now – and most importantly, check out what might be in store for us in the incoming year on the subject of search. 1 Content marketing is king, but... Investing in original, high-quality content that's customized to your brand is the biggest thing this year. A lot of businesses have made content the most dominant part of their SEO strategy; not a few have admitted that it is in fact their strategy. It's no surprise: the top search engine today always defines great quality (and therefore high-ranking) sites as having high-quality content. More reasons to make content the heart of your marketing strategy: B2B brand building: Content marketing is Brand validation: 70% of consumers choose to know more about a company via original used by 93% of B2B articles businesses %3D Cost-effective: Businesses save 62% and get 3x more leads when using content marketing vs. traditional marketing W/O W/ Conversion rate increase: Website conversion rate increases to 6x higher for Traffic growth: Unique site traffic grows 7.8x more annually for companies using the right content marketing strategy companies with a content marketing strategy vs. those without BUT! To make sure that the time, money and resources you spent in crafting great content will work according to their purpose, you need to support it with a solid SEO foundation. To get results, remember that content marketing does not replace SEO – but rather, it should work with SEO. Quick Tip: That means creating and publishing content while employing the following: Relevant on-page SEO elements (Title tags, Google Authorship integration, optimized URLS, heading, image tags, etc.) Technical knowledge of SEO Solid keyword research with focus on topic- based and long-tail targets The right strategy and optimization tactics 2 2 The death of Google Authorship and the rise of... Google Authorship is officially dead. But Author Rank continues to live and in fact poses a strong influence on your search engine results. It is believed that the leading search engine still has a system of tracking author information, and in a recent release of their "human rater handbook," or their search quality evaluation guide, they included Expertise, Authority, andTrustworthiness (EAT). Author Google Authorship RANK Quick Tip: Some ways to increase your EAT: Publish tutorials, guides and other helpful educational materials Be associated with authority people, websites and Work with influencers in brands your field (e.g., invite them as guests to your podcast, ask them to publish on your site, etc.) Show your face! The leading search engine may have removed author Attend conferences photos from search results but your customers will still prefer doing business with a and workshops; leverage your participation through networking and online exposure familiar face than with a new one. 3. The signal for SSL use is still very lightweight, but then again... The top search engine supports secure and protected sites in their effort to constantly improve user experience. They announced that sites securely encrypted with SSL certificates and adopting HTTPS will experience a slight boost in rankings. The signal they are using is still very lightweight, but it is expected that the ranking signal may get stronger over time. Quick Tip: You may want to make your website more secure, especially if you are running an e-commerce site. For those with a robust website, at least having HTTPS on your checkout pages is industry standard and highly recommended. It will also make your potential customer feel more confident buying from you. 4 A Guest blogging was killed (but only the old-school style) %23 Matt Cutts did it, with this famous announcement: "Stick a fork in it: Guest blogging is done." However, it should be specified: It was really high time for guest blogging - according to the old definition of posting and littering the Internet with low- quality blog posts with spammy and manipulative links – to rest in peace. But guest blogging with relevant, high-quality content is still an excellent tactic to build your audience and earn their trust and engagement. Quick Tip: Cutts further clarified his point in the comments thread: "If the links are nofollowed, then they don't affect PageRank, so it would be outside the scope of my team at that point. follóW A high-quality guest post with nofollowed links can still be a good way to get exposure to a new audience, branding, etc." 5 Mobile-friendliness is now an official criterion (Fresh update!) Google announced just recently (Nov. 18, 2014) that they will be adding a “mobile-friendly" label to the mobile search results. The update will be rolled globally over the next few weeks (it should have been rolled out by the time of publication). The intention is to make search easier and to reduce the frustration often experienced by mobile users from viewing websites that have been not optimized well for mobile. Quick Tip: Google guidelines for a mobile friendly site: • Avoids software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash Aa • Uses text that is readable without zooming • Sizes content to the screen so users don't have to scroll horizontally or zoom • Places links far enough apart so that the correct one can be easily tapped Resources to help improve your site's mobile-friendliness: Mobile-Friendly Test Webmasters Mobile Guide Mobile usability report on Google Webmaster Tools How-to guide to customize your third-party software like Word- Note that these are just the select 5 search updates to pay attention to – dig further and you will still need to consider a long list of factors and sub-factors that influence your rankings. Take the guesswork out of your optimization efforts and avoid mistakes that can cost you big time. Head over to http://www.superfastbusiness.com/products/traffic/ and get help with your website traffic now. Designed by superfastbusiness Sources: http://blog.ahrefs.com/important-google-updates-2014/ http://www.forbes.com/sites/jaysondemers/2014/05/06/the- definitive-guide-to-seo-in-2014/ http://www.searchenginejournal.com/google-authorship- dead-author-rank-interview-casey-markee/119730/ http://writtent.com/blog/59-killer-content-marketing-stats-2014-edition/ http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.ca/2014/11/helping- users-find-mobile-friendly-pages.html } 0OZTENTMARKETING LO 0OZTENT MA

2014 State of Search Update: 5 Significant Highlights

shared by superfastbusiness on Dec 30
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As the year draws to an end, it's a good time to look at the recent developments in search that will continue to have significance in the year to come. Check out 5 particular search highlights in this...

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