Schema markup has been in existence for years. Yet it’s still one of the least used optimization techniques in SEO. Search engines understand it, but do you? If not, we’re here to explain how incorporating schema into your SEO processes will benefit your website. Marked up pages have shown direct correlations for higher rankings on the search engine results pages. Once you read this article, you will have a basic understanding of what schema is.
On October 24 and 25th, members of the Efferent Media team headed into New York City, this time to the annual SMX East SEO/SEM Marketing Expo, whose programming is directed by Search Engine Land. At SMX East, representatives from over a dozen marketing companies were present, offering solutions for client reporting, service automation, and more. The two-day convention, held at the Jacob Javits Center, featured dozens of focused learning sessions for SEO and SEM. There was a wealth of information presented over the two days, and each member walked away with different perspectives on the convention, as well as some sweet swag!
Members of the PPC team, including Director of Paid Media Andrea Fine and Search Coordinator Joe Czarniecki, were on hand when Google Ads representatives announced that they were rolling out four new metrics to assess pay per click campaign effectiveness. The new metrics include:
- Impr. (Abs. Top) % – Search absolute top impression rate
- Impr. (Top) % – Search top impression rate
- Search (Abs. Top) IS – Search absolute top impression share
- Search (Top) IS – Search top impression share
Andrea Fine discussed the impact of the new metrics, and shared some of her thoughts. She reported, “I gained a greater understanding of the average position metric. It’s not as cut and dry and I thought. I didn’t know that Position 1 can be above or below the organic results. I loved the benefit of learning about Google’s new, previously unannounced metrics to help bid to TRUE location on search results page.”
She continues, “I learned a new way to find where our clients’ target audience is online. Look at referral traffic in Google Analytics, sort by most conversions. Separate by device category and review ad placements on both mobile and desktop to ensure they have advertising on the site and the ads are placed well. Add qualifying sites as placements in campaign.”
Joe Czarniecki said that the new Google metrics were a major takeaway for him as well: “These new metrics are more important because they help you bid to your true location on the search results page rather than seeing an average with the avg. position metric. Measuring with these prominence metrics helps advertisers by removing any uncertainty in ad position. Additionally, it clears up any confusion in when you’re analyzing your campaign and unlike optimizing for avg. position, there’s no weirdness with bidding.”
Search Coordinator Eileen McGovern was impressed by the multitude of link building possibilities and the technical seminar on SEO siloing presented by Bruce Clay, a long-acknowledged SEO expert. Of link building, she says, “A lot of SEOs are afraid to link build, because the penalties for doing it wrong can be severe. In our post-Penguin world, it’s understandable but it causes SEOs to be too conservative. If you’re practicing black hat SEO, then be fearful. But these seminars prove that there are many effective white hat tactics to build legitimate links.”
About the SEO siloing, she says, “It’s amazing how a site’s hierarchy can affect organic rankings, and how quickly it can be done. Website design needs to be done with SEO in mind. We need to move away from old design conventions and optimize sites in a way that makes sense to Google/Rank Brain. If not, then we’re wasting time and opportunities. We always say that ‘Content is king’ but that content needs to be presented in a manner that makes sense.”
Each member of the Efferent Media team enjoyed meeting with the speakers and connecting with industry experts. Industry heavyweights include Barry Schwartz, Bruce Clay, and Eric Enge were in attendance, offering an uncommon accessibility. The two days spent attending this conference provided the team with the latest tactics and each member is looking forward to utilizing the insights that they picked up on behalf of Efferent’s client base.
On October 19, 2018, several members of the Efferent Media team headed into New York City for the inaugural Transformation of Search Summit, which was sponsored by Search Engine Watch, one of the leading sources of online information for all things search related, and its sister company Click Z, the online digital marketing community.
Efferent team members in attendance included SEO Department Manager Michael Roberts, Social Media Manager Megan Guard, Search Coordinator Joe Czarniecki, and Search Coordinator Eileen McGovern. Sessions were provided by industry heavyweights, with representatives from brands including LEGO, Microsoft, Hilton, Google, and SAP.
In between sessions, the Efferent team was able to meet and speak with representatives from Kenshoo, Botify, Acquisio, and Adthena to discover how their software could provide solutions for Efferent clients (plus they were able to pick up some pretty sweet swag!)
Each member of the team had different takeaways from the Summit. For Search Coordinator Joe Czarniecki, the topic of voice search was deeply relevant, saying, “With the rising popularity of AI like Alexa, Google Home, Siri, and voice command, search is becoming a vital aspect to SEO and search engine rankings. It seems to be no longer a strategy of optimizing for search engines but rather optimizing for strategies like incorporating the use of featured snippets, using tools like AnswerThePublic, Google autocomplete, and Google suggestions can give us a better understanding of important keywords to rank for and what information people are looking for.”
Position 0 was also on Joe’s mind: “Position 0 is also another vital aspect to strive for because the future of SEO involves an increasing number of voice searches and what’s listed in position 0 is what it reads to the user after a voice command or inquiry. As Melissa Walner, Director of Global SEO for Hilton explained, ‘80% of Google Home responses stem from a featured snippet.’ So, it’s important to be ahead of the game with schema markup for local businesses and other useful rich snippets.”
Fellow Search Coordinator Eileen McGovern was intrigued by the possibilities presented by both voice search and the Internet of Things (IoT). She says, “With the rise of AI and the increased connectivity of smart devices, search engine marketers have to really get into the minds and intentions of their target audiences. As one of the speakers said, ‘The future of search isn’t search; it’s visual, and it’s AI.’
“A Gartner projection sticks out to me: ‘By 2020, 85% of customer interactions will be managed without a human.’ AI will get smarter, more intuitive, and every business must adapt to the new paradigm or risk losing out. When your customers are looking to reorder fresh produce because of a notification from their smart fridge, you need a plan in place already to capitalize on that opportunity. It won’t be enough to just pivot. The opportunity will already be gone.”
The most memorable seminar for Mike Roberts, Efferent’s Director of SEO, was from Melissa Walner, Director of Global SEO for Hilton, regarding voice search. He said, “Much of this is what we have known/realized and been working on already…but all of the data from the hotel landscape, gave a much fuller and robust view of how voice search currently impacts, and will impact, SERP listings.”
Social Media Community Manager Megan Guard found the keynote by SAP Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing Transformation Siddharth Taparia to be particularly compelling, saying, “Free data we provide through daily usage and reliability are essentially what will allow us to push forward in technology and how we will advance in the world of SEO.”
Megan was also struck by what Kerry Curran, the Managing Partner for Marketing Integration at Catalyst said about relevant targeting “during the new customer journey…how important search keywords can be when selling to a general audience” and to “keep in mind your larger audience demographic by all regions.”
For the Efferent Media team, some of the actual ideas weren’t new for them but rather, it induced them to look at existing concepts in new and different ways. Being able to learn about real life applications of marketing principles enabled them to see just how effective some seemingly simple concepts could affect large scale businesses. The entire Efferent team is looking forward to putting these concepts to work for their clients and seeing how they can impact businesses of all sizes.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Long Island, NY; November 27, 2013
Efferent Media, continuing to emerge as a leading Long Island Search Engine Optimization company, announces its move to new and larger offices to meet the needs of a growing client list and expanded staff.
Efferent Media was incorporated in 2011, launching its website, www.efferentmedia.com, shortly thereafter, and opening offices in Lindenhurst, NY. Founder and CEO Joe Garraffo has steered the fledgling company with over 15 years’ experience in web design, as well as web and mobile development. [Read more…] about Efferent Media, Local SEO Leader, Expands Client List