Rebecca's Thoughts on . . ., SEO - Search Engine Optimization

How Google Knowledge Graph Changes Search and SEO Forever

How Google Knowledge Graph Is Impacting Search and SEO

In February  2012 I wrote a blog post covering Google’s shift from word-based index to the knowledge graph. I based my presentation at PubCon Paradise social media and search conference in Waikiki to an audience of SEO and social media professionals on how the Knowledge Graph would change how search connected the dots between things, people and places.
On May 16, 2012 Google officially launched the Knowledge GraphGoogle Shares Knowledge Graph Search Results

How Does Google Knowledge Graph Impact Search?

Google Enhances Search in 3 Ways

Delivering the Right “Thing”: Google will leverage its broad database of knowledge to further define search. So, when you search for”prince”, Google will go a step further to identify whether you are looking for Prince the artist, Prince William and Kate, or Prince tennis equipment.Google search after release of Knowledge Graph

Provide the Best Summary: Google will connect the dots between the topic and relevant data, attempting to anticipate what users will find of interest or value. The use of artificial intelligence will enable them to anticipate the context of search requests based on the history, profile and preferences of the individual conducting the search.

Deliver Deeper, Broader Results: Google will go beyond the “word” (or keyword) to introduce relationships with other content, people, data, places saying, “…we can now sometimes help answer your next question before you’ve asked it.” Google will use what it knows about users to anticipate their question in to provide the best answer in search.

Google explains how it has launched the Knowledge Graph to connect the dots between the words that represent the 500 million “things” and more than 3.5 billion facts they have collected in a more relevant manner for those conducting search.

Google’s Amit Singhal told Business Insider:

“The Knowledge Graph enables you to search for things, people or places that Google knows about—landmarks, celebrities, cities, sports teams, buildings, geographical features, movies, celestial objects, works of art and more—and instantly get information that’s relevant to your query. This is a critical first step towards building the next generation of search, which taps into the collective intelligence of the web and understands the world a bit more like people do.”

Google Video on the Knowledge Graph

A piece by Wall Street Journal on May 16th on this topic put this discussion in the mainstream. SEO, financial and business communities became engaged as Danny Sullivan who was quoted as saying “...Knowledge Graph creates a more addictive experience for Google search users, who can now easily follow a series of links to related information on a topic. That in turn could boost the amount of searches users are conducting on the site.

Knowledge Graph Increases Search Volume on Google

It appears the launch of Google Knowledge Graph has done just that as Wall Street Journal states that Google has reported in increase in searches since the launch of Knowledge Graph on May 16, 2012.

 How will Knowledge Graph Impact SEO?

Because the name of the game is to deliver what search engines seek in order to achieve optimum visibility, SEO must incorporate the Knowledge Graph into their thinking.

Inevitably the optimization of digital assets for search must move beyond words (or keywords) to connecting the dots between the relationship between things, people and places. I believe this will come much more naturally for those who have historically taken a strategic, marketing approach to SEO and have leveraged a Long Tail SEO method. However there is plenty of room for “keyword” focused SEO’s to adapt their methods to enable Google to connect the dots for their customers.

Will the Knowledge Graph Change How YOU Think of SEO?


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Agency iAcquire Banned by Google for Covertly Buying Links for Dunn & Bradstreet Brand

Google Blacklists and De-Indexes Agency iAcquire for Covertly Buying Links Agency delisted blacklisted from Google for link buying practices

Reminiscent of the early days of search when SEO’s more frequently publicly about websites they’ve worked on being de-listed, blacklisted or banned from Google, it appears the fall-out of Google Penguin Update continues over a month after the “rules of search” have changed.

Covert Link Buying for Brand of Fortunte 1000 Company

On May 25, 2012 the SEO community was all abuzz discussing how Agency iAcquire has recently been banned in Google for buying links for clients, more specifically; Dunn & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. which has rights to the Fortunte 1000 D&B brand, and to sell Dunn & Bradstreet products.

On May 21, 2012 a blog post by Josh Davis exposed the link-buying practice just days prior to the Agency being delisted. Search Secrets: How a prominent SEO company is covertly purchasing backlinks for Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corporation includes the dialogue that exposed the process being used to purchase links as well as an update from D&B Credibility Corp and their position on subsequent events.


The fallout from Google’s action is huge, as you can imagine. This warning shot across the bough undoubetedly has captured the attention of SEO’s who may have pushed the envelope in search.


Interestingly, this appears to have bubbled up two perspectives in the SEO community as Google search becomes an increasingly difficult environment for some SEO companies to operate in. Some are vowing to rebuild their businesses while others appear to feel vindicated by the fall-out created by recent algorithm updates.


Industry Divided: White Hat vs Black Hat


I recall a rather heated discussion I had with the principal of an SEO firm at an industry event in the Dallas Fort Worth area. After exchanging the basics, we got into our SEO philosophy. When I explained that my digital marketing firm did not (ever) offer link-building services the debate became heated. This SEO company president emphatically discredited my statement. That is until the company’s chief programmer was summoned into the conversation and stated that achieving top position in Google can be done without link-building schemes, but that it was simply much more difficult to do. This conversation has occurred numerous times in recent years. Two sides always emerge: those who build SEO around link-building, and those who rely on strategic, white hat SEO without links or other trendy aggressive practices that have come and gone over the years.

This is indicative of how the SEO industry is defined today: White Hat vs Black Hat SEO.


Link-Building Fall Out Forces Change in Many SEO Firms

Those who have stayed the course, resisting the temptation to implement SEO methods that were not strictly white hat have long been the silent winners in this long battle. Black Hat SEO’s who enjoy highly-profitable stints of promoting aggressive methods have become victim to cyclical changes driven by highly sophisticated search engine algorithm updates over the years. Penguin is nothing new. I believe it has hit a raw nerve because so many have placed themselves under the umbrella of search engine optimization. Yet, far fewer have developed proven white hat methodologies over the years. Those who didn’t see this coming, are evaluating and modifying their business models to survive the latest changes in search, including Thinkit who posted in a press release today why they are adding social media services to their company offerings… “It’s no secret that Google takes a dim view of certain types of services that LinkWorth offers, but Thinkit Social will be 100% ‘white hat”.


Will there be more fallout from Google algorithm updates?
Undoubetdly yes. The best advice is to align yourself with what Google promotes as best practices for quality websites.
If you do not, all you can do, as the boyscouts say, is “Be Prepared”.

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Seminars & Events

PubCon Video Introduction to SEO and Keywords Featuring Rebecca Murtagh

PubCon Blog:
A Free Video Introduction to SEO and Keyword Research

Click to View Rebecca Murtagh Video Intrdouction to SEO and Keywords for PubConPubCon invites speaker Rebecca Murtagh to share her strategic approach to SEO and Keywords.

SEO has become complex and challenging. Recent algorithm changes are forcing webmasters, marketers and entrepreneurs to adapt their SEO methods to achieve visibility in search.



Beyond Keywords: A Strategic Marketing, White Hat Approach to SEO

In this video, PubCon Speaker Rebecca Murtagh shares an introduction to SEO and keywords, that breaks from the mainstream approach to keyword-centric SEO.  Rebecca offers beginners and advanecd SEO’s insight on how deploy a more strategic marketing approach to search engine optimization in this free video introduction to SEO.

Google Rewards Quality Websites – Encourages Marketing Approach to White Hat SEO

In a recent blog post, Google stated that recent search engine algorithm updates such as Panda and Penguin are designed to reward quality websites, encouraging a marketing approach to White Hat SEO as a means to achieve desired results in organic search.

Rebecca has successfully done just that for over 10 years. Her unique, marketing-focused White Hat SEO methodology has delivered results for clients of her digital marketing firm for years. So, while others focused their search engine optimization efforts on a list keywords, Rebecca has always driven White Hat SEO from a marketing perspective.

Click to Watch the Video
Join Rebecca Murtagh as she shares with PubCon’s Vanssa Zamora, how to:

  • optimize digital assets
  • target qualified customers
  • pre-qualify the click
  • differentiate from customers
  • convert visitors to customers.

See Rebecca Speak at PubCon Las Vegas

Rebecca will join the world’s leaders in search, social, mobile and digital marketing as a speaker at PubCon Las Vegas, October 15-19, 2012. Rebecca has presented on the topics of search engine optimization, social media and search, mobile websites, as well as Live website reviews and PubCon Labs at PubCon Dallas, PubCon Las Vegas, PubCon Paradise in Waikiki, HI.

SEO Methodology That Sustains Google Updates

Rebecca’s marketing-driven approach to White Hat SEO has been successfully in achiving top visibility in Google for 10+ years. Rebecca provides In-House SEO Training, SEO Training for Teams, Individuals, Marketers, Webmasters and to the trade (agencies, new media firms, PR firms, website design firms, etc.). Contact Rebecca to learn more about her SEO methods.

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Rebecca's Thoughts on . . .

Google Penguin Gives Black Hat SEO The Cold Shoulder

Google Penguin Update Rewards
White Hat SEO

Over the past year we’ve seen continuous efforts by Google update its search engine algorithm to improve quality of search engine results. The latest, the Google Penguin Update, has apparently shaken many up. However, just as with the Google Panda Update, many of the same SEO’s that have seen performance improve have also survived the Penguin Update seemingly unscathed.Google Penguin Update

Natural Selection – Survival Of The Fittest in SEO

Just as in nature, those that adapt will survive. For years professionals that are legitimately able to put websites in the path of customers and sustain search engine changes have had to endure the “snake oil salesman” mentality cast on the industry due to the malpractice and/or abuse of client trust by amateurs.

Google Penguin Hearts White Hat SEO

Interestingly, White Hat SEO’s seem to be faring better than their darker counterparts (Black Hat SEO’s) when it comes to survival and continued performance in the wake of Google Updates.

Clients of my digital marketing firm have done very well amidst the Panda and Penguin. We have always deployed ethical, marketing-focused search engine optimization. And, believe it or not, we have never entered into link-building campaigns. (I’ve had heated discussions with self-proclaimed SEO’s that claim that you cannot achieve top search position without link schemes)…it can be done, and we’ve done it for years. 

In fact, when done properly, many websites have either solidified their top positions, or expanded visibility. Our clients have done quite well throughout numerous Google Updates due to our marketing approach deployed with a long-tail SEO and integrated social media approach. Some of my peers with similar success in persevering recent search algorithm updates have reported similar results. Bill Grunau of Esotech, Inc. has shared with me his search engine optimization clients have fared well amidst recent changes.

Some declare SEO is dead. Others move their search engine business to paid only…citing that Google has ruined SEO. I submit that if you deliver what the customer is seeking, without scamming the system, the search engines will do the rest for you. It’s been proven over and again for my clients over 10 years.

What say you?

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Rebecca's Thoughts on . . .

Will Your Brand Sustain the Test of Time in Any Light?

How Timeless is Your Brand Story?

This morning I came across a stunning time-lapse video called Yosemite Range of Light by Shawn Reeder (shared below).
[vimeo 40802206]

If you’ve ever visited Yosemite, or any other landmark more than once you know how different the view is depending on the time of day, season and light. This landmark has impressed visitors for generations. And, although a different image is projected based on how and when the image is viewed, the landmark remains the same. The same is true with your brand. You must be consistent in managing your brand to all audiences, at all times, if you wish your brand to stand the test of time.

Does Your Brand Shine In Any Light?

Are those that interact with your brand at any given moment offered the same experience? Whether your audience interacts with you personally, through the internet, via a mobile device, or through a recommendation made via social media, each should be offered the same brand message. Of course this can be adapted according to the unique circumstances of their experience. For example, if they are coming to you through a specific offer, they should be presented with the offer, supported by your overall brand values. A mobile experience may require a streamlined interaction with your brand, just as the introduction to your brand on the floor of a convention hall must also convey your brand story.

Is Your Brand Consistent?

Take a look at your brand from all entry points and through all possible paths.
Begin with your marketing plan and evaluate each communication with fresh eyes and ask yourself whether all levels of audiences will gain the information they need to know who you are, what you offer, why they should choose you, when the best time to act is, and how to respond to your offer. When approached holistically over time, you present a consistent, predictable interaction with your brand.


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