I had a chance to ask Sean Si of SEO-Hacker a few questions about search engine optimization and wanted to share the interview with you, as optimization is one of the most important aspects too often ignored by bloggers.
Sean reveals where he believes the industry is heading, how to take advantage of some of the emerging trends, and what to expect from the years to come.
The world of search engine optimization is always changing, so it’s a good idea to keep your finger on the pulse and adapt to the best of your abilities. Whether you’re an SEO yourself, a business, or a blogger interested in the advantages of aligning your content with your audience, search engine optimization will help you stay a couple steps ahead of your competition.
Let us know if you have any additional questions for Sean in the comments section, and be sure to connect with him!
FUEL: What’s going on in the search engine optimization world right now?
SEAN: There’s a huge shift towards content marketing this year – after the ever-popular Penguin hit. Lots of content in Slideshare and other SEO blogs about ‘Content Marketing is the new SEO’ here are some to check out:
- Crap. The Content Marketing Deluge.
- Why Content Marketing is the New SEO
- The New SEO Era: 5 New Grounds to Avoid Extinction
Penguin 4.0 will roll out soon – although that’s pretty much just an upgrade from it’s already huge debut: hitting 20% of Google search results
Can you give us a few example of what content marketing is, including some of the ways it’s being implemented by publishers?
Sure thing. Here’s the best way I think content marketing is being used:
Copyblogger uses content marketing to gain subscribers with their Content Marketing 101 short-course landing page. This goes hand-in-hand with their high search engine ranking when you search for ‘content marketing’. The landing page gives you so much stuff about content marketing and is full of CTA buttons and phrases that you would end up giving your email address to them 99% of the time. Which leads to a powerful drip-feed campaign (that even penetrates through their e-books) that would just keep on increasing their authority in your life and knowledge. It’s some sort of subtle hypnosis – but there’s no magic involved. It’s really just content.
Content that is so powerful, it makes you want to buy all the stuffs they’re selling.
I’m putting up a Content Marketing series entitled “Breaking down Content Marketing” – you might want to check it out.
Does SEO Hacker have a specific strategy in mind for the imminent shut down of Google Reader?
Perhaps the closest I can think of right now is the huge surge in search volume for the keywords similar to ‘Google reader alternative’ with which there is an opportunity for solid content that can attract links.
Do you think your readers will continue using RSS readers, or will they swing more toward social for their content consumption?
I think that RSS is such a great, convenient way to keep up-to-date with what’s happening in a specific industry of interest. I use RSS all the time. Of course, I use feedly now that Google Reader is gone. Then again, Google Reader won’t shut down if there are a lot of people like myself. In my honest opinion, the general trend is that a lot of people have moved to social (such as Facebook pages, Google+ activity feed, or twitter feeds) for their content consumption.
I use Google+ a lot when I share news or interesting stuff that I dig up on the web. You can follow me on Google+ here.
How much overlap is there between social media and search optimization now that Google is on both sides of the fence?
I wouldn’t really call it overlap. I see social media as more of a value modifier when it comes to a webpage’s SEO factors. Social signals helps verify if a webpage is really worthy of its backlinks and search results standings. On the other hand, social media is a powerful source of branding. The more social media estates your brand has, the better. There will be more information about who you are for Google to digest. That’s always a good thing.
Which social platform are people connecting with seo-hacker most?
What’s the most important thing a blogger can do to enhance their prominence in the Google index?
The best thing? It’s stupendously simple really: write great content that will attract people’s attention, interest and move them to an actionable point – whether it’s to share your stuff, to change their habit, to buy your product, to avail of your service, or to simply incept an idea. After this most important thing, there’s the second important thing: Promote. Market it out on the right social platforms, the right communities, shell out money, use some tools to do this. Getting the word out on great stuff is always helpful – and will always incur some thanks and gratefulness from people who have had the chance to find out the usefulness of that stuff. These thanks can come out in the form of links, word of mouth, search queries, positive social signals, etc.
Infographics became a great way to attract a lot of attention — how do you optimize them?
I honestly think that there are tons of crappy infographs that are published for the sole purpose of attracting links. The thing about infographs is that, only the really, really, really, really good ones make it. Any less than that, you’re just wasting your time. Infographs have a limited room for optimization. You make sure the alt text is right, don’t put in an image title (it might distract readers who mouses-over your infograph), make sure the surrounding text of the infograph describes what the infograph is about, and make sure to put in a text area below the infograph for people to be able to copy the code if they want to use it in their website.
The best infographs tells a story, not just data. I think that the best way to optimize an infograph is to have an awesome outline before you start designing it.
What are you working on right now at SEO Hacker?
We’re working on creating more lessons and video sessions in SEO Hacker school before we fully market it out. We’re mostly still on the beta testing stage but we’ve got some great stuff inside the school for those who are starting out on learning SEO. It’s a school where we pretty much spoon-feed our students through the lessons and videos and community forums. We’re hoping it would go all-out by summer.
Awesome, what’s the best way for people to stay updated with the latest from SEO Hacker School?
Right now, you can enroll for free as an Insider – this will give you an initial ‘feel’ of what it is to be enrolled in SEO School. This will also ensure that we have your email address to update you when there are new things happening inside such as new lessons, videos, design, quizzes, etc.