Creative Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization (SEO) has become more than just a way to create additional revenue from the internet; it has become the primary source of affordable online marketing. Beyond best practices, businesses must now become creative to compete with SEO, and do so in a way that keeps costs low.

Is creative search strategy really that important?

Before you add this article to your "maybe later" stack sitting in your office, consider this: one of my clients recently earned nearly a quarter of million dollars in gross revenue online, 62% of which came from natural/organic search. Granted, they had a high ticket item, but the results were within a three month time frame.

Another client continues to recalibrate their website content and drive links through creative search strategy. Their innovative ideas have produced nearly two million dollars in sales from organic search within a twelve month time period. Once again, organic search drove the majority traffic and revenue; and in this case, responsible for three times as much revenue as the second highest producing medium.

Regardless of whether you are a Fortune 100 business or run a small mom and pop store, natural search engine traffic could be where most of your online revenue comes from. Having the right creative strategy will be the one element that stands between you and success.

Competitive creativity on a website

Most companies don't stop to think that their competitors may be watching every move they make online. Perhaps a company invested a year creating dozens of keyword rich web pages, invested time and resources acquiring keyword rich links to those pages, and possibly even invested in sponsored advertising. Thanks to online tools, within one day a competitor can find and list every single keyword the competition is targeting and each and every link they have acquired; rendering a year of hard work nearly in vain.
The same creativity could lead a business to crawl a competitor's website, index keywords in page titles, meta data, headings, HTML site maps, page nomenclature in XML site maps, and scrutinize internal linking structures. Aggregated, categorized and emulated with better content, the on-page search engine optimization playing field has just been leveled.

Creativity of a website

With tools such as Wordtracker's Link Builder and others, an advertiser can not only find and prioritize links acquired by the competition, but also catalog the keywords used within the link text and the actual pages being linked to. (Search engines prefer a diversity of activity as opposed to a pattern of influence.)
Using a bit of creativity to track keyword ranking of competitors, a business can identify changes in position and isolate the exact destinations used to earn them. In a nutshell, your competitor could begin to appear everywhere you do almost instantly after you acquire a link you may have worked hard to research and obtain.
Advanced query tools are plentiful to help you find links from relevant niche directories, associations, indexes, blog posts and articles that all start with a simple query, such as 'list of florist directories'. But is all this work in vain if the competition is hot on your trail?
Here are a few creative strategies to consider:
  1. Produce one to two amazing pages of content per week. Use your blog, celebrity contacts, survey results, humor, downloads, videos, diagrams, controversy, joint contribution, sex (if appropriate), emotion, direct response to a hot topic, or anything that makes you confident that the reader will share, link, tweet, like, comment and drool over.
  2. Conjure up something users can embed on their own created their CPD Organizer for nurses in Australia to track, manage and (hopefully) post how many nurse education hours they have completed (over 1,000 nurses use it now). Business Speaker Bodine Balasco offers motivational tips at that you can add to your website that rotate each time the page is loaded. Beneath each of these innovative ideas you'll find one of a batch of keywords that link to various pages within Ausmed's and Balasco's respective websites. Reload the 'get your code' pages to find the rotations.
  3. We need stinking badges. Creating a set of requirements along with a badge users can embed on their website upon completion is a great way to create links. If you have a product or service that requires safety instruction, offering a quiz and a certificate of completion badge (button and link) may be something to consider. See an example of a badge by taking the SEO quiz at
  4. Affiliates will rule the world. It's true. The only internet marketing industry more exciting than SEO is affiliate marketing. Websites such as have already caught on to this fad and are allowing affiliates to register the websites they plan to promote with; so that when they link they do so without tracking codes, which Google and other engines can detect, and many times, filter out.
  5. Get into college, again. You may need to collaborate with your team on this one. Many colleges have earned trust with the search engines and carry with them more weight when it comes to link building. Aside from just searching for pages themed around student discounts and employee discounts, consider a creative strategy that involves getting in-context links posted willingly by teachers, faculty and students on an ongoing basis and your competition will have no idea what hit them.
Having keyword-themed content on a website will always play an important role in SEO. However, before you begin checking off a list of link building tasks written five years ago, you might want to take the team out for a day and work together on creative strategies. Campaigns you think up should not only invoke the desire to share, link, tweet, like, and comment, but may also contain features that can be embedded, syndicated, or have transparency with affiliates and partners.
Great SEO in 2011 and beyond will take creative thought and innovation. Embrace this idea and you've put your SEO strategy on autopilot, trumping anything the competition may have on their outdated checklist.

Keyword Competitive Intelligence 101

In my last column on keyword forensics, I pointed out how keywords can provide insight into human behavior. In this column I will share a few tips and tools that can be used to learn more about your competitors. This knowledge can provide insights into what your competition is, or is not doing. Armed with this information, you will have the means to make your Internet marketing campaigns even better.


Who Is Your Competitor?

For our purposes, a competitor is any known organization you are competing with for market share. However, you should also consider any organization that is similar to you in size, business model, etc. So don't be too narrow-minded as you put together a list of your competition. You might find some great information as you do research on other organizations that you might not be in competition with.

If you are unsure of who your competitors are, you can do research online to help. For instance, when I looked up using SpyFu I discovered a list of organic and paid competitors. This can be handy as you are putting together a list of your competition. You might know the main players but you could be missing some of the lesser known ones. To dig a little deeper, don't forget to research who is in competition with your direct competitors.

competitors paid-competitors

A Look Under the Hood

One simple way to learn more about what keywords your competition is using in their campaigns is to go to any page of their website and do a view "page source" to look at their HTML tags. This is usually found under the "view" menu tab for most browsers. What this does is let you see the html code that makes up the Web page. You are just looking for the keywords used in their title, meta keyword, and meta description tags. Putting your keywords in the meta keywords tag won't help you much with SEO but it will provide some insight in to what many websites are being optimized for.

Let's take a look at Petco's website. What you should look for is the

Keywords That Are Not Being Used

In some cases it may not be the keywords you see, but the keywords you don't see that matter. This could represent a good opportunity for you. As you do your research on your competitors you should conduct a kind of gap analysis. Find out what keywords are not being used and add them to your keyword list. You can also use tools like the Google Keyword Tool, Keyword Discovery, Wordtracker, or WordStream to help you find words that are less competitive. Keywords that fall into this category are usually easier to rank for organically and cost less with paid search.

Keyword Competition Tools

We have already taken a look at SpyFu for identifying who your competition is, however, it provides more competitive data. Most of these tools below will provide you with a free version or a 30-day trial. But to get the real good stuff you need to upgrade to the paid version.

As you can see below, SpyFu shows display information about a domain's AdWords ad budget, average ad position, and organic SEO traffic, just to name a few. Additionally, you can identify the top "paid" keywords as well at the top "organic" keywords. This is obviously very helpful as you consider building your own paid search campaign.


ISpionage is another great tool that will provide information on an organization's PPC and SEO efforts. It helps you review your competitors' ads, their ad budgets, and the top performing keywords. You can even do a keyword search instead of a domain search. Here is a snapshot of a search on the keyword "web hosting." You can see the top advertisers as well as the top keywords.


The next tool is KeywordSpy. This is similar to the others and helps you keep track of the most profitable keywords. It can also provide insight on which ads are the most profitable as well as CPC information. You can also see from the tabs that you can look at the actual ads, PPC competitors, and organic competitors.


Other notable keyword competitive tools you should look at are Compete and Quantcast. Both of these tools go beyond finding your competition's keywords. They provide insight on your competitor's site traffic and demographic data. There are more great tools out there but these will really get you started in the right direction.

Look at Your Own Site

You may think that these tools are pretty cool. But be careful. Your competitors can use this same information to look at your site. So use these tips and tools on your own site to see what you are revealing about yourself.

As you may already know, I am an advocate of the use of keywords as a strategic tool for anything you do with your marketing efforts. This is just another case where you can learn about your competition armed with a few tips and tools.


Ketika Anda memikirkan pemasaran menggunakan mesin pencari, maka anda akan  hidup di dunia yang jauh lebih besar dari sekedar Google, Yahoo, dan Bing.
Pada Konferensi strategi mesin Pencari  di Chicago, saya duduk di pada sesi untuk optimasi mesin pancari dengan YouTube  dan Facebook.
Menjawab apa artinya menjadi pengoptimasi mesin pencari lebih rumit daripada dulu.
Menurut Alexa, tiga besar situs adalah:
1. Google
2. Facebook
3. YouTube
Jika Anda mencari untuk mendapatkan eksposur yang paling kepada khalayak terbesar, Anda mungkin ingin serius mempertimbangkan beberapa jenis kampanye dengan situs tersebut.
Dalam kolom ini, saya ingin memberikan lima rahasia yang mungkin tidak anda ketahui tentang optimasi search engine YouTube. Memahami rahasia ini bisa memiliki dampak besar pada peringkat Anda.
Aku punya sebagian besar dari Greg Jarboe pada sesi tentang optimasi video. Aku ingin memberikan kredit dimana kredit ini jatuh tempo.
Rahasia # 1
Dapatkan ide kata kunci dari saran autocomplete.
Ini adalah saat ini dicari kunci frase di YouTube. Jika Anda mencari untuk membuat video tentang orang-orang tertarik pada sesuatu, Anda pasti ingin memeriksa fungsi autocomplete di YouTube.
Hal ini sangat mudah frase kunci untuk melakukan penelitian. Dan Anda mungkin akan menemukan beberapa topik menarik untuk mendapatkan video Anda membuat jus mengalir.
Rahasia # 2
Gunakan Perangkat Kata Kunci Saran YouTube.
Ini adalah tempat yang bagus untuk menemukan ide untuk frase kunci untuk video Anda. Anda juga dapat meletakkan ID video YouTube dalam perangkat dan akan memberikan saran untuk frase kunci untuk ditambahkan ke video Anda.
Rahasia # 3
Gunakan semua ruang diperbolehkan untuk judul, deskripsi, dan tag.
Judul harus sekitar 100 karakter.
Deskripsi dapat berisi hingga 5.000 karakter, tag bisa 120 karakter. Buatlah tujuan untuk menggunakan setiap salah satu batas untuk setiap video Anda.
Dari posting blog YouTube, "Kata-kata yang Anda memasukkan di dalam deskripsi Anda, kesempatan Anda semakin tinggi dari yang ditemukan oleh pencari, yang berarti audiens yang lebih besar dapat tumbuh, dan potensi pendapatan lebih anda bisa mendapatkan."
Rahasia # 4
Gunakan penjelasan dari blog ini:

* Mendorong pemirsa untuk berlangganan dengan sebuah tombol berlangganan dijelaskan.
* Gunakan anotasi untuk link ke video, playlist, saluran, dan banyak lagi.
* Gunakan anotasi untuk mendorong umpan balik.
OK. Penjelasan tersebut tidak secara khusus untuk optimasi pencarian. Tapi mereka adalah cara terbaik untuk membuat orang baik berlangganan ke saluran Anda atau menonton salah satu dari video Anda.
Rahasia # 5
Cobalah promosikan lewat youtube
Hal ini dibayar mencari video Anda. Ini adalah langkah-langkahnya:

* Pilih salah satu video Anda, menulis beberapa teks promosi, dan memberitahu kita kata kunci yang harus memicu promosi Anda.
* Menggunakan kata kunci, promosi video Anda sekarang akan muncul di samping hasil pencarian kontekstual yang relevan.
* Ketika klik penampil YouTube pada promosi Anda, mereka melihat video Anda. Anda hanya membayar ketika orang klik untuk melihat video Anda - bukan ketika orang melihat promosi Anda.

YouTube adalah kesempatan besar untuk lalu lintas baru. Semoga tips ini akan membantu Anda menavigasi ruang yang dalam cara yang lebih efektif.

12 Most SEO Mistake

Have you ever embarked on some SEO work and got that sinking feeling that you might be doing something wrong? You're not alone. Our expert Mark Nunney gives us the dirty dozen top mistakes he sees being made in SEO, as well as tips on how to negotiate the pitfalls.

1. Missing the big picture

Most SEO advice is given for a single page, word or technique. But if a site is to be responsible for a profitable small business then in most situations it will need hundreds of pages targeting hundreds of thousands of keywords using a wide range of techniques.
All of these pages, keywords and techniques need to work together so you need a plan to coordinate that, including:
• Keyword research looking for potential keywords with Wordtracker Keywords Tool and existing traffic with Wordtacker Strategizer)
• Strategy (your prioritized groups of target keywords)
• Site structure (matching your target keywords) and navigation to distribute link power around your site
• On page SEO
• Link building with Wordtracker’s new Link Builder tool and online PR.
To work at any scale beyond a micro-niche business, you must change your perspective from single (or exact match) keywords to keyword niches – groups of keywords sharing the same seed ...
... so right now I’m helping a site selling slippers and I might focus a lot of SEO and link building on the single keyword slippers but I’m really interested in tens of thousands of keywords containing slippers, including leather slippers, men’s slippers, ladies slippers, etc.
I designed Wordtracker Strategizer to work with this shift in perspective from single keywords to keyword niches.

2. Not having a keyword or SEO strategy

What are you trying to achieve? Most importantly your SEO strategy should serve the company, marketing and brand strategies. A keyword strategy is a prioritized list of the company’s target markets' niches, as defined by the keywords used in those niches - the words and phrases used in search engines.

3. Putting too much trust in an SEO company

You need to get whoever you have approached to prove what they've done, even when you have a personal reference for that company. You should take a step back and ask yourself, "what is being delivered?" Make sure you are getting your money's worth.
Often they (businesses) will see a company with a nice website and they may be inclined to trust them because of that. Here are a few simple questions to ask any agency you might be talking to:
• Do you always give complete ownership of site analytics accounts to your clients? If not, why not? (The answer is they want to ‘lock you in’.)
• How do you build links other than paid, directories, press releases, article sites and using your own websites?
• Can you list all the link building techniques you have planned for me, give the weighting you’ll give to each and why?
• Give examples of how your strategy and tactics might change with circumstances.
• If their given link building techniques include the likes of comment spamming and buying links ask: I understand they can work now, but what happens when Google stops them working?
• (Following up on the question above) Remember the Florida update? If the person you’re speaking to doesn’t remember 'Florida', ask to speak to an SEO who does.

4. Having a company structure or systems that are unable to accommodate change

Change is always difficult. But combine it with something completely new and you’ve got a problem. The new thing is SEO and online marketing - neither is particularly well understood or even trusted, and in some cases companies have never heard of it.
Change is never going to happen unless those with authority and responsibility absolutely insist it does. This slows down many large companies and allows the small, who do embrace SEO, to do well. Here’s a nice example - do a search for hotels in London, Paris or New York. You would think you would see all the big names at the top, but you’ll see plenty of companies you’ve never heard of.

5. Not coordinating SEO with your editorial, sales and marketing departments

New content without SEO to maximize the number of target visitors seeing that content is a waste.
SEO without marketing to convert those visitors is a waste.
Your content, SEO and marketing should work together as part of a process.

6. Not monitoring response or acting on results

You have to monitor response eg, the numbers buying your product or signing up to your newsletter.
You may find that the market niche you hoped would work ends up being lame. If so, move on.
Monitor traffic, rankings and response for relevant searches. If you are getting good or bad results you need to act appropriately. That might be moving on to the next target niche, or investing more resources into the same ones.

7. Poor content management systems

It’s a cliché to say you need the right tools to do the job. One of SEO and online marketing’s tools is a content management system (CMS) that gives you complete control over most of the content, on most of the pages, including site navigation, menus and all marketing. Not having that is like entering a car race on a scooter.

8. Letting developers control website content

Partly as a result of companies having no existing knowledge and systems to accommodate online marketing and SEO, those who build the website have by default often become in charge of its content.
But letting developers take control of online content is like letting the mechanic drive the racing car. Or buying a car from a Ford garage and letting the mechanics decide where you can drive.
Take control of your website.
The developer's job is to deliver the functions you want and keep the site working. What goes on the site and where and when is the responsibility of editorial and marketing, including SEO.

9. Not doing SEO now

Here’s a simple point; every day you wait to start SEO means it will be more expensive to get the same results when you do start. If you can get to the top of Google for a collection of keywords this will give you momentum and help you stay at the top, and it becomes cheaper.
Serious search engine success allows for serious business success - put these things together and you’ve basically got a gold rush. If you don’t do the work now it’s going to cost you a fortune to do it in the future. There is a simple reason for this and it’s inbound links.

10. Neglecting the importance of site structure and navigation

Most reasonable sites for reasonably sized businesses are going to need hundreds (sometimes thousands) of pages.
If you have hundreds of pages you need an optimized site structure and an accompanying site navigation. Even on a small site it’s possible to get this wrong and waste all your work.
You might have wonderfully optimized pages and links but if you don’t have your navigation right, or your structure isn’t right then your success will be limited.
What should you do? It’s hard to give a quick answer, but you should organize your site content into categories of related content. Let’s say you had a site selling chocolate - you would have all your Belgian truffles in one place and chocolate cake recipes somewhere else, almost working as different sites with their own home page (category home pages.)
On larger sites, related categories can be grouped together into channels.
Make sure your home page links directly to your site’s most important category pages. See Are your Superman Pages trapped in a basement full of kryptonite?

11. Neglecting your home page

Your home page is by far your most powerful page because most of your site’s inbound links will come to there. Use that power with copy to both target your toughest keyword niches and help other niches with links to their category home pages.
You can test what works, trying keywords of varying degrees of difficulty and ambition.

12. Over-relying on your home page

This is just as problematic. There are only so many different keywords you can effectively target with one page. When success is achieved for a keyword niche with your home page – move that success to other pages using internal and external links.