SES New York 2011 Roundup

The SES New York 2011 conference wrapped up last week on the heels of one of the biggest Google updates in recent years.

And although there was enough Panda talk to make a passerby think we might all be zookeepers, there were other themes running through the conference as well including content, paid strategies and tools, tools, tools.

Here’s a quick recap:

Panda: The Aftermath, as it was called essentially recapped what TopRank and other content advocates have been saying along.

Create unique, quality content that is written first for the target audience and second for the search engines. It’s those who have been living dangerously – or maybe just naively – creating what’s now referred to as shallow content who likely got hit the worst.

Here are a couple items to check if your site is seeing less results than it was pre-panda:
1. Check your content and outline a content plan to create more.
Also, remember that the navigations, call-outs etc that live on each page are considered part of the content. If you don’t have enough unique content on each page to ‘out-weigh’ the navigation, you might run into trouble.
2. Google is now paying more attention to spelling and grammar. If your site is lacking in basic writing skills, fix it up.
3.  Check your internal link structure. If you have links pointing to each page on the site, Google will have trouble determining which pages are truly important.

Next, the paid strategy called retargeting also seemed to have people buzzing. Retargeting is the process of delivering ads to people on the web who have either entered a shopping cart and abandoned, or visited your site – but not entered the shopping cart process.

To get started with retargeting, think about the user action and your next action.
For example, if a visitor abandoned the home page you likely will want them to see a promotional offer featuring the brand.

If a visitor abandoned the shopping cart, you can send them a reminder to complete the purchase or a reminder with a coupon. Think through when and how often you offer the coupon, however, because it doesn’t take long to train a visitor to abandon the shopping cart because they know a coupon is coming. 🙂

Overall, if your site is experiencing a high number of exits in the shopping cart process, then retargeting might be a good option for you.

As always lists and tools are popular at a marketing conference and came together as a list of tools! Check out some of the recommended tools:

1. Crazy Egg – helps determine where people are clicking on your web pages, visually
2. Clicktale – use this tool for user session info, advanced link and form analytics
3. Cross Browser Testing – allows you to test different OS, browser, application settings
4. MockFlow – an online wireframe tool for helping when developing a website
5. AttentionWizard.com – a tool for predicting where visual attention exits on a site
6. Clicktale – use for form analytics
7. 4Q, Kample – survey tool to illicit from web visitors why they are on their website and if they are completing their intended tasks
8.  Mongoose Metrics, ifbyphone – for call tracking
9. WebsiteOptimization.com – if your site is known to load slow, this is a tool to help you check the speed
10.  Smush.it, Dynamicdrive – a tool for smushing images

If you attended SES New York 2011, feel free to comment below adding what you thought people were buzzing about this year.

Jolina Pettice:

View Comments (7)

  • Thanks for the article. I have been before in some Search events in London and I have noticed that the recurring recommendation from all speakers is: write unique high-quality content, emgage with clients through social media, get natural links, bla bla bla.
    My question is then: why are there SEO agencies? is it to write the high-quality content? what about link builders? Do they work to get you "natural links"?
    Is social media interaction as spontaneous as it is supposed to be, now that it is becoming a job for some people?

    My point is that the Search industry is based on a cat and mouse chase between Google and spammers, with some SEO agencies in the middle trying to "spam" cautiously.

    The natural content, links and social interaction is the work of the company itself rather than the SEO agency.

  • There are a lot of amazing new tracking toos available, hoever, some of these are super expensive and not for the smaller retailers. $100k a year is not cheap!!!

    • Why would anyone pay $100K a year for tracking tools when you can find them for free or a small monthly fee. We offer tracking tools and reports at no charge for most of our SEO customers.

      • Free means little or not support and when a business is generating substantial revenue in part based on the use of "free" tools, they have no recourse or leverage if those tools go down or go away. $100k is excessive, but there are plenty of useful tools companies are happy to pay for knowing there is security and support.

  • Many online web companies are worried about Google's Panda policing of the web. But there should be nothing to worry about if you practice white hat SEO. And to answer Pain's question, "Why are there SEO agencies" - there are good SEO agencies that provide valuable knowledge and marketing to webmasters and businesses. But like every other industry, there are the best at the top of the food chain and then there are the black hat bottom dwellers. There are great doctors and the doctors that practice without a license. There are great pilots and the pilots that drink on the job. I think you get the point. You need to do your homework and find the right SEO agency that has years of experience and results.

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