Tag Archive | "June"

Early data around the Google June 2019 core update shows some winners, losers

This Google update that began rolling out on Monday seems like it was pretty big and the scary part, it isn’t done rolling out yet.



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Google sunsetting two bidding strategies in June

IF you’re using target outranking share or target search page location bidding, prepare to make a switch next month.



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Writers: Doors Are Open for the Copyblogger Certification Program (through Monday, June 12)

"Apply to join Copyblogger's list of recommended writers." – Sonia Simone, Chief Content Officer

You may have noticed that we’ve been talking up our Certified Content Marketer program lately. We’ve already had some amazing folks join us and get started … but we still have room for you.

Click here to get all of the details.

Here’s the two-minute run-down:

Who it’s for

Strong writers who want to make more money and find better clients.

What it will do for you

  • Teach you solid content strategy, so you can get better results for your clients
  • Give you tools to improve your professionalism with clients, so you look better and do a better job
  • Get featured (if your application passes review) on Copyblogger’s list of recommended writers

What you should do next

Go check out the program details. We have no plans to open the program again in 2017, so if you want in, don’t wait. We’ll close the doors on Monday, June 12 so we can keep our focus on delivering an excellent experience to our students.

If you really want to join us but you worry it might not be what you need — don’t stress. We offer a 30-day money-back guarantee — no questions, no hassles. If you get into the program and realize it’s not a good fit, just let us know in those first 30 days and we’ll part as friends.

Click this link for all of the program details — and I’ll look forward to seeing you there. :)

P.S.

If you’re a member of our Authority community, make sure you’re signed in when you click the link — as an Authority member, you get special pricing. :)

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2017 Content Excellence Challenge: The June Prompts

2017 Content Excellence Challenge: June Prompts

There’s something about June … maybe that it’s the sixth month, so you have that reminder that the year is half over. Or maybe it’s the June sunshine (at least in my hemisphere) that makes you want to be ultra productive so you can sneak out for a before-dinner walk.

In any event, I’m feeling rather conquer-the-worldish at the moment, and I hope you are, too. To help with that, here are our community prompts for June.

Each month in 2017, we’re giving you a pair of prompts — one to make you more productive and one to improve your creativity or writing skills.

You can jump in anytime — and let us know about your experiences in the comments!

The June Productivity Prompt

Weekly outreach

Last week I wrote a post about the two ugly problems that plague freelancers, especially when they’re starting out: the lack of clients and the lack of good clients.

One solution to these terrible woes is to put a marketing system into place — a regular, consistent process you follow to find more of what you want.

This could apply to …

  • potential clients
  • potential customers
  • potential blog readers
  • potential podcast listeners

… you get the idea.

Your productivity prompt for this month is to decide on a day of the week and a time. Maybe it’s Thursdays at 10:00 a.m.

Then, every Thursday at 10:00 a.m., do one outreach task. You might use June to experiment with tasks and find one that works for you.

What’s an outreach task? It’s a repeatable process to find and connect with new people who don’t know you yet.

Some possibilities include:

  • Logging in to LinkedIn and connecting with potential customers
  • Setting up or tweaking a low-cost Facebook ad campaign that sends traffic to a strong content asset on your site
  • Cold-calling five good prospects (not a good fit for me, but it is for some — just be sure you do your homework first)
  • Reaching out to a solid web publisher to propose a guest post
  • Participating in an online group in your topic and making yourself useful (not spammy)

The point is to make a weekly habit of reaching out to find your audience, rather than creating content and hoping someone stumbles across it eventually.

I do have an ebook that could be helpful. It’s called Effective Content Promotion, and it’s free when you register for the MyCopyblogger library.

If you’re in our Authority or Certification communities, we’ve also been focusing on outreach (Beth Hayden did an amazing session with us in late May), and we have more workshops scheduled with techniques that will help you actively get out and grow your audience.

Outreach is often one of those tasks that lives outside our comfort zones, so it really helps to figure out precisely what you’re going to do, and then schedule a fixed time to do it at least once a week.

Here are some resources for the whole comfort zone thing:

And a shout-out to Mark Butler, the Budget Nerd, for his recent comments about outreach at a live event that sparked this prompt idea. :)

The June Creativity Prompt

Find your alter ego

We all have areas where we just don’t feel very strong. Like I mentioned above, cold-calling is one of mine. When I’ve needed to do it, I haven’t felt confident or capable — and it showed.

This month’s creativity prompt is to invent an alter ego who’s great at the thing you’re not good at.

You’re going to imagine this person as a character in a novel or a film. Know what they look like, how they talk, what they wear, where they live.

Then, when you’re doing the challenging activity, you’re going to write as that character.

You don’t have to be a fiction writer to pull this off. It’s much easier to do in writing than it is to try face to face or on the phone, although those are also options if you feel ready for Expert Mode.

  • Are you too timid when you discuss your services with a client? Write a pitch using the voice of an ultra confident alter ego.
  • Are you too blunt when you email colleagues? Write an email using the voice of a nurturing, benevolent earth mama.

You don’t have to share what you write — but you may well find that you want to. When it’s time to be tough, or patient, or steely, or suave, it’s handy to have a well-developed alter ego who can handle those states effortlessly.

Let us know how you’re doing with these!

What kinds of outreach have you found valuable? And what will be your day and time to schedule them this month?

What’s your alter ego amazing at?

Let us know in the comments! I’d love to hear more. :)

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Desktop Search Activity Up 12% YOY In June, 4th Straight Month Of Double-Digit Gains [comScore]

Desktop search activity continues to rebound, and was up 12 percent year-over-year in June according to the latest comScore qSearch data just out today. ComScore estimates that there were 19.2 billion “core” desktop searches last month. That’s down four percent from the 20 billion…



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Good Eggs: Wordtracker’s weekly SEO round-up, 27 June 2013

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Businesses who see seasonal patterns in their sales should have a read of The Skyrocket Guide to Seasonal Link Building Campaigns by @jamesagate

Writing copy for your website has the best of us scratching our heads but hopefully this post by @bmassey will help: Five Ways To Flip Your Copywriting For Higher Conversion Rates

Here’s an excellent, in-depth piece by @tnooz aimed at travel brands: A (very) deep-dive into using Facebook for marketing in the travel industry

A nice reminder of just how important Google Authorship is as it stands at the moment: Please, stop talking about AuthorRank by @gfiorelli1

You may have noticed that paid ads have blending into the organic results in recent years. Hopefully this ruling will put a stop to that: FTC Updates Search Engine Ad Disclosure Guidelines After “Decline in Compliance” by @dannysullivan

This is an interesting way of looking at how to nurture your blog and create a loyal community around it: 5 Ways Copying Politicians Can Grow Your Blog

Case studies are always fun. Here’s a look at how actual users took to using the Google Local Carousel: 10 Random People’s Reactions to Google Local Carousel There’s more about the carousel in our blog post on the subject: The Pros and Cons of Google Local carousel search

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Early Look at Google’s June 25 Algo Update

Posted by Dr-Pete

If you follow our MozCast Google “weather” tracker, you may have noticed something unusual this morning – a record algorithm flux temperature of 113.3°F (the previous high was 102.2°, set on December 13, 2012). While the weather has been a bit stormy off and on since Penguin 2.0 and the announcement of 10-day rolling Panda updates, this one was still off the charts:

MozCast Temperatures

I’m usually cautious about over-interpreting any single day’s data – measuring algorithm change is a very difficult and noisy task. Given the unprecedented scope, though, and reports coming in of major ranking shake-ups in some verticals, I’ve decided to post an early analysis. Please understand that the Google algorithm is incredibly dynamic, and we’ll know more over the next few days.

Temperatures by Category

Some industry verticals are naturally more volatile than others, but here’s a breakdown of the major categories we track in order by the largest percentage change over the 7-day average. The temperature for June 25th along with the 7-day average for each category is shown in parentheses:

  • 68.5% (125°/74°) – Home & Garden
  • 58.2% (119°/75°) – Computers & Consumer Electronics
  • 58.1% (114°/72°) – Occasions & Gifts
  • 57.8% (121°/77°) – Apparel
  • 54.8% (107°/69°) – Real Estate
  • 54.1% (107°/69°) – Jobs & Education
  • 50.6% (112°/74°) – Internet & Telecom
  • 49.4% (112°/75°) – Hobbies & Leisure
  • 49.4% (102°/68°) – Health
  • 44.9% (105°/73°) – Finance
  • 44.5% (116°/80°) – Beauty & Personal Care
  • 43.0% (116°/81°) – Vehicles
  • 39.7% (104°/74°) – Family & Community
  • 38.0% (109°/79°) – Sports & Fitness
  • 37.3% (89°/65°) – Retailers & General Merchandise
  • 34.7% (101°/75°) – Food & Groceries
  • 32.4% (107°/81°) – Arts & Entertainment
  • 25.9% (92°/73°) – Travel & Tourism
  • 25.6% (93°/74°) – Law & Government
  • 25.5% (92°/73°) – Dining & Nightlife

Every vertical we track showed a solid temperature spike, but “Home & Garden” led the way with a massive 51° difference between the single-day temperature and its 7-day average.

Some Sample Queries

There are so many reasons that a query can change that looking at individual cases is often a one-way ticket to insanity, but that doesn’t seem to stop me from riding the train. Just to illustrate the point, the query “gay rights” showed a massive temperature of 250°F. Of course, if you know about the Supreme Court rulings announced the morning of June 26th, then this is hardly surprising. News results were being churned out fast and furious by very high-authority sites, and the SERP landscape for that topic was changing by the hour.

Sometimes, though, we can spot an example that seems to tell a compelling story, especially when that example hasn’t historically been a high-temperature query. It’s not Capital-S Science, but it can help us look for clues in the broader data. Here are a couple of interesting examples…

Example 1: “limousine service”

On the morning of June 25th, a de-localized and de-personalized query for “limousine service” returned the following results:

  1. http://www.ultralimousineservice.com/
  2. http://www.uslimoservice.com/
  3. http://www.fivediamondslimo.com/
  4. http://www.davesbestlimoservice.com/
  5. http://www.aftonlimousine.com/
  6. http://www.awardslimo.com/
  7. http://www.lynetteslimousines.com/
  8. http://www.chicagolandlimo.com/
  9. http://www.a1limousine.com/
  10. http://www.sterlinglimoservice.com/

The following morning, the Top 10 for the same query was completely rewritten (yielding the maximum possible MozCast temperature of 280°).

  1. http://www.carmellimo.com/
  2. http://www.crestwoodlimo.com/
  3. http://www.dial7.com/
  4. http://www.telavivlimo.com/
  5. http://www.willowwindcarriagelimo.com/
  6. http://www.asavannahnite.com/
  7. http://www.markofelegance.com/
  8. http://tomscruz.com/
  9. https://www.legrandeaffaire.com/
  10. http://www.ohare-midway.com/

One possible pattern is that there are no domains in the new Top 10 with either the phrase “limousine service” or “limo service” in them, which could indicate a crack-down on partial-match domains (PMDs). Interestingly, the term “limousine” disappeared altogether in the post-update domain list, although “limo” still fares well. This could also indicate some sort of tweak in how Google treats similar words (“limo” vs. “limousine”).

Example 2: “auto auction”

Here’s another query that shows a similar PMD pattern, clocking in at a MozCast temperature of 239°. The morning of June 25th, “auto auction” showed the following Top 10:

  1. http://www.iaai.com/
  2. http://www.autoauctions.gsa.gov/
  3. http://www.americasautoauction.com/
  4. http://www.copart.com/
  5. http://www.interstateautoauction.com/
  6. http://www.indianaautoauction.net/
  7. http://www.houstonautoauction.com/
  8. http://www.ranchoautoauction.com/
  9. http://www.southbayautoauction.com/
  10. http://velocity.discovery.com/tv-shows/mecum-auto-auctions

Just one day later, all but the #1 spot had changed…

  1. http://www.iaai.com/
  2. http://www.copart.com/
  3. http://www.autoauctions.gsa.gov/
  4. http://www.barrett-jackson.com/
  5. http://www.naaa.com/
  6. http://www.mecum.com/
  7. http://www.desertviewauto.com/
  8. http://www.adesa.com/
  9. http://www.brasherssacramento.com/
  10. http://www.voaautoauction.org/

In the first SERP, eight of the top ten had “auto auction(s)” in the URL; in the second, only two remained, and one of those was an official US government sub-domain (even that site lost a ranking spot).

Top-View PMD Influence

Ultimately, these are anecdotes. The question is: do we see any pattern across the broader set? As luck would have it, we do track the influence of partial-match domains (PMDs) in the MozCast metrics. Our PMD Influence metric looks at the percentage of total Top 10 URLs where the root or sub-domain contains either “keywordstring” or “keyword-string”, but is not an exact-match. Here’s a graph of PMD influence over the past 90 days:

PMD Influence Drop

Please note that the vertical axis is scaled to more clearly show rises and falls over time. Across our data set, there’s been a trend toward steady decline of PMD influence in 2013, but today showed a fairly dramatic drop-off and a record low across our historical data (back to April 2012). This data comes from our smaller (1K) query set, but the pattern is also showing up in our 10K data set.

For reference and further investigation, here are a few examples of PMDs that fell out of the Top 10, and the queries they fell out of (including some from the same queries):

  1. “appliance parts” – www.appliancepartscenter.com
  2. “appliance parts” – www.appliancepartscenter.us
  3. “appliance parts” – www.appliancepartssuppliers.com
  4. “bass boats” – www.phoenixbassboats.com
  5. “campagnolo” – www.campagnolorestaurant.com
  6. “divorce papers” – www.mydivorcepapers.com
  7. “driving school” – www.dollardrivingschool.com
  8. “driving school” – www.elitedrivingschool.biz
  9. “driving school” – www.ferraridrivingschool.com
  10. “driving school” – www.firstchoicedrivingschool.net
  11. “driving school” – www.fitzgeraldsdrivingschool.com
  12. “mario game” – www.mariogames98.com
  13. “monogrammed gifts” – www.monogrammedgiftshop.com
  14. “monogrammed gifts” – www.preppymonogrammedgifts.com
  15. “nickelback songs” – www.nickelback-songs.com
  16. “pressure washer” – www.pressurewashersdirect.com
  17. “tanzanite” – www.etanzanite.com
  18. “vibram” – www.vibramdiscgolf.com
  19. “wine racks” – www.wineracksamerica.com
  20. “yahtzee” – www.yahtzeeonline.org

I’m not making any statements about the quality of these sites (except nickelback-songs.com), since I haven’t dug into them individually. If anyone wants to take that on, though, please be my guest.

The “Multi-Week” Update

Recently, Matt Cutts warned of a multi-week algorithm update ending just after July 4th – could this be that update? The short answer is that we have no good way to tell, since Matt’s tweet didn’t tell us anything about the nature of the update. This single-day spike certainly doesn’t look like a gradual roll-out of anything, but it’s possible that we’ll see large-scale instability during this period.

Some (Quite a Few) Caveats

This is an imperfect exercise at best, and one day of data can be misleading. The situation is also constantly changing – Google claims Panda data is updating 10 days out of every 30 now, or 1/3 of the time, for example. At this early stage, I can only confirm that we’ve tracked this algorithm flux across multiple data centers and there is no evidence of any system errors or obvious data anomalies (we track many metrics, and some of them look relatively normal).

Finally, it’s important to note that, just because a metric drops, it doesn’t mean Google pulled a lever to directly impact that metric. In other words, Google could release a quality adjustment that just happened to hit a lot of PMDs, even though PMDs weren’t specifically the target. I would welcome any evidence people have seen on their own sites, in webmaster chatter, in unofficial Google statements, etc. (even if it’s evidence against something I’m saying in this post).

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SearchCap: The Day In Search, June 24, 2013

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the Web. From Search Engine Land: Google AdWords New Top Movers Report Aims To Automate “What’s Changed” Reporting The new Top Movers report in Google AdWords shows you which…



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Good Eggs: Wordtracker’s weekly SEO round-up, 20 June 2013

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Hashtags are popping up everywhere: Google+, Vine and now Facebook: Here’s Why Facebook Wants to Edge In on Twitter’s Hashtags by @MikeIsaac

Links and social media are just a part of off-page SEO. Here’s a detailed look at important it is in ranking for search engines at the moment Off-Page SEO in 2013 and beyond by @jasonacidre

Social networking site FourSquare can be a boon to local business marketing if you know what to do with it Here are 3 Smart and Creative Ways to Use Foursquare for Marketing by @rickmulready

@writebeard reminds us about all those little bits of text on forms and the like that can be improved on Five Ways to Prevent Bad Microcopy

There’s nothing quite as informative as learning about how a real company does things. Read How Econsultancy uses Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ by @lexx2099

In Clever Uses for Facebook Graph Search @halophoenix gives some tips on how local business can use the soon to be released to everyone (we think) Facebook feature.

The biggest web companies have been falling over themselves to prove how honest and open they are in the wake of Prism revelations. Read what Time has to say about it in NSA Scandal: Tech Titans Jockey to Be the Most Transparent of All by @samgustin

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Good Eggs: Wordtracker’s weekly SEO round-up (Week ending June 13, 2013)

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Good news: Majestic SEO have just announced that their Site Explorer tool is now free for verified domains: Site Explorer goes Free for Verified Domains
@MajesticSeo

Why hitting the publish button isn’t enough to get your golden content shared and a very nice picture of Ryan Gosling: Content Marketing Fairy Dust @buzzstream

An in-depth look at some SEO queries (including Google algorithms, private blog networks and social signals) Answers to Questions About Search Engine Optimization @seo_theory

If you didn’t manage to get to BrightonSEO, @kelvinnewman has very kindly posted them online. Here they are: Videos

Interested in content curation? Here’s a list of free tools to help with that: Time-Saving (& Free!) Curation Tools For The Modern Multitasking Content Marketer from @aimclearblog

Here’s some very useful information you need before you start putting your e-book together How I Turned a 40,000 Word Guide into 361,494 Visitors and 8421 Email Opt-ins @quicksprout

@sengineland have revised their really useful Periodic Table: Now Updated: The Periodic Table Of SEO Success Factors

Last but certainly not an interesting take on the reasons behind the PRISM program ;o) Obama Admits “(Not Provided)” Drove Decision To Use PRISM Program @localseoguide

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