Bill and Ammon's Bogus Hangout #73
Weekly discussion and chat show by marketers, but not necessarily about marketing. The regulars chat with diverse guests about anything and everything. Bill and Ammon (+Bill Slawski and +Ammon Johns ) reprise their role as the "Wyld Stallyns" of SEO, with bodacious babe +Kristin Drysdale helping wrangle comments, and stop them chasing squirrels. (okay, a more realistic goal: prevent them chasing too many squirrels). +Terry Van Horne joins us to release more squirrels when Kristin isn't looking. Bodacious SEM babe +Jennifer Slegg has somehow been convinced that joining the band is a good idea. (No squirrels are harmed in the making of this program) About *Bill and Ammon's Bogus Hangout* This is _not_ a polished, planned and scripted event. This is a casual hangout with old friends and new, shared with all. It is a virtual meetup group of genuine conversation. Somewhere around the halfway point, we'll post the link for anyone who wishes to come and join us (space permitting) allowing us to meet even more old and new friends. The idea of pre-planning, a set topic, or even simply knowing who will be on the show this week? All totally *bogus*. Free Air-Guitars to all attendees (exact model and colour may vary with imagination) Our general style is to issue *uninvited invitations*, naming folks we think might like a chat, without asking first if they are available (or willing). This week we're going for our version of a jam session again, with no particular invitations, and an *open invitation* for any of our viewers to jump in and join us for the conversation. We'll post the link to join us live once we start. We have no idea yet who will actually turn up, and that's how we like it. Excellent! #beexcellent #bogushangout *Notice* Hangouts On Air is moving to YouTube Live. We'll need to use YouTube Live to schedule events happening after 12 September. We're not sure what this may mean for G+ Event pages just yet, so be ready for possible changes to our procedures.
How Reliable are SEO Tools?
SEO Theory June 3, 2016 Hangout with Michael Martinez of Reflective Dynamics, Inc. and Kent Yunk of Roaring Pajamas SEO. * Each SEO tool brings something different to the search optimization experience * SEO tool vendors are aggressively reaching out to agencies * How reliable is the data provided by SEO tools? * Kent uses Advanced Web Ranking * Running rank checking tools from your own IP address leads to Google blocking you * AWR now handles the crawling (through multiple IP addresses) * SEO tools sometimes use data partners to populate their dashboards * Some SEO tools now provide auditing tools * They are moving toward "one size fits all" products & the industry will probably shake out * SEO tools would all go out of business if the industry adopted standards * SEO tools are nothing but a waste of money * Michael once made up very convincing charts with fake data * There will never be accurate, reliable all-in-one SEO tools * The tools need data from Bing and Google, which they cannot get * Rankings vary widely now so even ranking reports are useless * Google's interpretations of user intent are often wrong * Even Bing & Google ranking data is not very helpful * The only useful ranking data from any source is a verifiable trend * Some tools and people pull data from Webmaster dashboards * Lack of standards leaves analytical methods in confusion * Larger Websites cannot pull enough data from Bing & Google * Data truncation and sampling destroy statistical relevance * Daily time slicing helps with some sites but not on the most popular * Kent has used SAS to process data when Excel is inadequate * Google's analytics tools don't make any sense at all * Search Console now allows people to aggregate query data in sets. WHY? WTF? No value. * An SEO tool's usefulness is based on its intention * New Moz keyword research tool replicates Ubersuggest function without adding value * Should you always be crawling your site? No. * People are developing SEO tools and requirements that have no SEO value * Crawling Websites overloads servers and ties up connections. It's irresponsible. * Let the client decide if you should crawl their Website. * SEO crawlers do not "see" Websites the way Bing & Google do. * SEO auditors should not simply follow check lists. They need to understand why they should be performing each audit task. * If you take the job you have to fulfill the requirements & that includes using useless SEO tools if client/employer requires it. * When more experienced SEOs recommend tools they often omit explanation of how they got extra value from the tool. * Most people lack the background & aptitude to understand why they should use any given SEO tool. * SEO checklists had good beginnings but have become indecipherable black box projects. * SEO classes, all basically worthless due to lack of standards, usually provide checklists * Real SEO standards would provide a common frame of reference for everyone to use to gauge benefits of tools & tasks. * "Right now SEO is largely a ripoff" as an industry because it has no standards. * Employers and clients have nothing by which to judge the quality of work performed. * SEOs who do a lot of link research don't get much actionable data. * Only a spammer would send out 10,000 link outreach emails. * Diminishing returns kill the value of link research. * Link research tools don't vet their data against search indexes. * What does it mean if a search engine does not index links? * People have different opinions of links. * Low SEO metric values for Websites are misleading. * "A high quality Website can have very few links pointing to it and it's not going to rank well on a lot of these SEO metrics." * Google reranks search results in personalized search based on its faulty interpretations of intent * Many SEO auditing tools use a very small subset of what is important * On a large Website some auditing tools are helpful, such as identifying duplicate titles & meta descriptions * Bing & Google Webmaster dashboards report duplicate elements & should be given weight over SEO tools. * Indexation is a big problem because there are no reliable tools for checking indexation. * Using a "site:" query is inadequate. * Search engines don't tell you everything they know. * Michael's partner Randy Ray often analyzes search referrals to landing pages * If the search engine is not sending traffic to the page then there is something wrong with the page * Decide how much of your time any given page is worth before trying to "save" the page * Michael & Randy have fixed many sites hit by the Panda algorithm * Getting rid of content may be a better use of your time if you can create new content more efficiently * An SEO tool that provides benchmarking may be able to help you perform a gap analysis * It comes down to how you can measure performance * The best thing third parties can do is utilize your own data * None do it well