Posts tagged Process

Perfectly Safe Directory Submissions Your SEO Process – Search Engine People (blog)

Search Engine People (blog)
Perfectly Safe Directory Submissions Your SEO Process
Search Engine People (blog)
The important thing to remember here is not to view directories purely as an SEO strategy to boost your website rankings. You should avoid using fixed keyword heavy anchor text and under no circumstances try to squeeze your entire directory push into a
5 Ways Paid Search Can Support SEO In RetailMarketing Land
The death of SEO and the rise of
The Main Ingredients of an Effective SEO MixBusiness 2 Community -Browser Media (blog) -Digital Journal
all 26 news articles »

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How Etsy Reinvented Its Development Process

When your company is a platform for the livelihoods of thousands, you’re probably not going to have a good time with your full-scale code rewrite.

Unless you’re Etsy, that is. By involving more than 10,000 users in the rewrite from Day One, the “handmade marketplace” has all but skipped the user-frustration step of the process for its complete revamp of a new Listings Manager for sellers.

According to Russ Posluszny, Etsy’s engineering manager of shop management, this is the largest collaboration between Etsy developers and Etsy users yet.

See also: How Etsy Turned Into A Gadget Paradise

“This is the second largest prototype Etsy has ever done in terms of sheer numbers,” he said. “But in the level of participation, it was our most intensive.”

It’s part of a unique process called Etsy Prototypes, where users can opt in to testing new features before they officially hit Etsy. The program launched in 2011, and there are now 50,000 active users testing prototypes. It’s become such an important outlet for user feedback, it’s actively shaping the site’s development process moving forward.

Development The Etsy Way

The revamp began when Etsy realized that its sellers weren’t using the site’s listing tools the way the company expected them to. Users seemed to be fighting against the product in order to do what they wanted to do.

These listing tools were designed for sellers to update one item at a time. But Etsy’s research showed that sellers were far more likely to do batch updates in which they listed multiple items to their page at once. The existing tools made this tedious. 

Interviews with sellers helped identify the problem. But that was just the beginning of an arduous back-and-forth as developers forged ahead in one direction, leaving users to test the prototype and recommend big changes, starting the cycle anew.

To speed up the process, Etsy Prototypes keeps developers, designers, product managers, and users constantly in contact. Users connect and receive feedback quickly through a forum. Designers and developers use a process similar to the “agile management” used in app production to ship their latest versions.

This includes a “living style guide,” in which designers bypass ordinary wireframes and select from existing code segments to build functional interfaces very quickly. (It certainly helps that all designers at Etsy double as coders.) User feedback is implemented into new versions of the prototype with a turnaround as quick as a few hours.

“Sellers understand their business needs better than anyone else ever could,” said Nickey Skarstad, a senior product manager on Etsy’s shop management team. “By partnering with our community in the development process, we can check and balance our progress against their needs and constantly make sure we’re on the right track.”

Inside The Technology Stack

Open source was also a huge aspect of the project. The Etsy codebase is primarily written in PHP, but also uses the JavaScript framework Backbone, a small JavaScript MVC library, for establishing conventions and patterns to organize the data on Etsy pages. Straightforward HTML and CSS are used for front end design. These technologies are all open source, although Etsy’s codebase itself is closed.  

One task with a lot of payoff was integrating Marionette, a layer on top of Backbone for large JavaScript applications. Over the course of the project, Etsy took advantage of and contributed to the Marionette open source framework so much that Etsy programmer Jason Laster became one of Marionette’s lead maintainers. 

While the new listing tool has been all but ready to go since the fall of 2014, the company decided not to release it until after the busy holiday shopping season. Sellers subscribed to an Etsy mailing list have known about the upcoming feature since last year, and membership in the prototype forum has grown from 11,000 to 23,000 in a day after Etsy announced it on its blog.

These users can opt to begin using the feature right away. Others may choose to keep going with the “classic tool” until Etsy retires it next month.

“The folks that use Etsy are using it to run their business, and it’s really critical that we don’t cause disruption there,” Posluszny said. “Small hurdles like learning new products can cause roadblocks in running their business. It’s important to allow users to learn at their own pace.”

Photo by Jared Tarbell

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A 2015 Process to Removing a Google Link Penalty by @JordanKasteler

If at one point you’ve bought links, hired an SEO agency, or received a sudden decrease in website traffic, then this blog post is for you. Even if you don’t have a penalty at this time, you’ll want to review the inbound links coming into your site. It’s always better to be proactive because by the time you realize you have a penalty it’s too late. This is the 2015 process for removing a penalty and analyzing potentially hazardous links. Tools Needed: Google Webmaster Tools Tools like Link Research Tools and URL Profiler Google Docs Website email account ( Step 1: Gather Information Start by […]

The post A 2015 Process to Removing a Google Link Penalty by @JordanKasteler appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Webinar Recap: Managing the Online Editorial Process with Kelsey Jones by @dantosz

On Thursday, January 8th, SEJ hosted our very first webinar. We’d like to send a huge “Thank You!” to all the attendees who took time out of their busy day to join us. The webinar was hosted by SEJ founder Loren Baker and included a fantastic presentation by our Managing Editor, Kelsey Jones, titled “Managing the Online Editorial Process”. Kelsey’s presentation included actionable advice on how to manage any size blog: including how to build a community, choose writers, and develop content ideas. Watch the Webinar Recording If you missed out, you can watch a recording below: Or, you can view Kelsey’s slides on Slideshare.  […]

The post Webinar Recap: Managing the Online Editorial Process with Kelsey Jones by @dantosz appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Avoiding Content Marketing Spam: Content & SEO Culture, Process, Ownership

Before you map your 2015 content and SEO strategy, understand the different types of content that your organization needs, and have processes in place for authoring and production of different types of content.

View full post on Home – SearchEngineWatch

Google Penguin 3.0: Worldwide Rollout Still In Process, Impacting 1% Of English Queries

Google updated their Penguin algorithm with version Penguin 3.0 late Friday night. The Penguin algorithm primarily looks at a site’s backlink profile and may demote a site that appears to have a poor backlink profile. The Penguin 3.0 release was communicated very poorly by Google. With Google…

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

View full post on Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

How to Speed Up the Link-Building Process

Utilizing Google Webmaster Tools means that the normal time spent playing the waiting game for your content to be revealed to searchers can be cut down significantly.

View full post on Search Engine Watch – Latest

Hiring for Growth: 13 Fail Proof Ways to Streamlining the Process by @YEC

When your new company actually starts to grow, the celebration might be short-lived—growing pains are very real, particularly when it comes to staffing up in a shorter time frame than you’re used to. Every decision you make during a growth spurt impacts your future, but no individual decision matters as much as the people who show up to work for you each day. Curious about how to avoid costly, time-consuming hiring mistakes—and how to streamline the recruiting process overall—we asked 13 founders and YEC members who’ve been there to share their best tips for hiring smart. Test in Small Doses Rather than diving all […]

The post Hiring for Growth: 13 Fail Proof Ways to Streamlining the Process by @YEC appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Why Optimizing SEO Is An Ongoing Process – Business 2 Community

Why Optimizing SEO Is An Ongoing Process
Business 2 Community
Why should optimizing your search engine ranking be an ongoing process? It's really a no brainer, especially when you break down exactly what you are doing during an SEO process. Think about it. Let's first look at search engines. How do search engines …

View full post on SEO – Google News

Targeting Your Audience Earlier in the Buying Process – Whiteboard Friday

Posted by randfish

Bigger audiences and less competition aren’t actually that hard to find; we just have to reach a bit farther up the funnel. In today’s Whiteboard Friday, Rand explains the benefits of this largely unexplored place, showing you how to reach potential customers before they’re even aware that they’re looking for you.

Here’s a still of this week’s whiteboard:

Video transcription

Howdy, Moz fans, and welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. Today I’m going to talk a little about targeting your customers and your potential audience earlier in their buying process.

So you’re probably familiar and have seen diagrams, maybe even from marketing class if you went to marketing class, about the buying journey. Usually, the buying journey starts somewhere around here. There’s awareness, research, establishing criteria, evaluating vendors, and then making a buying decision.

I want to challenge us to think even a step ahead of that. Before we know that we’re going to be aware of a potential product, we are pursuing our own interests. We are living our lives. We are maybe trying to chase away boredom or downtime on our mobile phones or browsing random sites on the Internet or following our interests.

Whatever we’re doing actively, that’s the first place where we usually start to have awareness about something. That awareness of a potential problem or an issue or something that we might want to invest in, a business could have those awareness issues, an individual could, a family could.

Then, once we get to an awareness stage, then we start realizing, “Hey, I have a need. I’m going to start researching this need, this problem, this challenge.” Then, after I’ve researched a little, if I decide to keep going, I’ll establish criteria by which I’m going to make a buying decision. I’ll evaluate some vendors, and then I’ll buy.

As you can see, this is often framed in terms of a funnel because there’s usually a lot more people up here than there are down here. Some people decide the problem is just not that big, and they don’t need to research it. Some people who research it decide it’s too expensive, or they satisfice and do something else. Some people who start to evaluate vendors decide they don’t like any of them, and so they never buy anything. And that’s fine.

Here’s the problem. In the SEO world especially, but even more broadly in Internet marketing, we think about all of our marketing efforts down at the bottom of this process. Even the most broad ones usually think in the awareness and research phase. Very, very rarely does anyone think about that “pursuing interests” phase, but you can do remarkable things here.

For each of these phases, there are questions that you want to ask yourself as a marketer and your team, things like: Where does your audience spend time online, and what are they doing on the Web? Who do they listen to? 

Those big broad questions, because that can tell you, “Hey, we can create awareness even before that awareness exists on its own.” This is the challenge of overcoming that branding problem that a lot of companies face, especially those who aren’t very transactionally focused.

Then, when you get to that awareness stage, what are the earliest questions that your audience has around your topic? Not around the purchase or the criteria or the vendors, but around the broad topic. Then, in the research phase, how would someone discover the potential choices or solutions? What broad resources already exist out there that they might be navigating to in some way already?

Once you get to establishing criteria and evaluating vendors, you know what? Too late. You are too late. This is where everyone is already doing SEO. Every keyword phrase, term, every retarget or every content marketing effort, they’re all here. Only a few of them are here, and almost none of them are up here. That’s why it’s so exciting.

Early means less competition, because there are so few people operating in here. It means more link opportunities, because a lot of the content that you create down in here is going to be very transactional, very promotional, not likely to pull in a lot of links, not reference worthy.

This stuff is super reference worthy. This is where content marketing plus link earning plus social sharing, that’s where you really get that wonderful, wonderful effect of earning those links, which gets you more domain authority, which gets you the ability to rank higher for all your content, which then means the next time you produce content, it’s easier and easier. That’s the boulder rolling down the hill.

Earlier in the process means a bigger audience. A bigger audience, that means this is a great place to build community. This is a tough place to build community, not an impossible place, very tough compared to these.

But there are challenges that come along with this too. This is extremely hard, sometimes impossible to measure. In fact, I would say it is impossible to fully measure the efforts that you put in here and what comes out at the bottom of the funnel. You have to be willing to accept some serendipitous outcomes and some unmeasurable results.

Because of that, there’s a lot less competition. By the way, you get a low overall conversion rate. You’re going to target a ton of people. Look at Moz. I mean, our audience is 2.5 million, well maybe it’s 3 million or more people coming to our website every month. There’s not even close to half a percent of those people who are taking their free trial. Our audience, because we’re reaching so far up into the phases of pursuing interests and awareness and research, we’re not just spending time down here at the bottom of the funnel. For that reason, the overall conversion rate is very, very tiny.

Because of these things, because it’s hard to measure, because so many of the results are serendipitous, and because of that low overall conversion rate, it’s super hard to get managers or executives or clients to buy into a process like this. A lot of people are just going to say “no,” and not do it.

I love marketing opportunities where lots of people are saying “no.” You know why I love them? I love them because it means that there’s opportunity for me. It means I can make a lot of mistakes, I can not be perfect at it, and I’m the only one there. It’s a beautiful thing.

So, I’ve created a quick example to kind of walk you through this. Here’s Rand, and I get an email from Darren Rowse at ProBlogger, and he’s inviting me to come speak in Australia. Boy, Australia is a long ways away. But you know what? I want to make the trip. The ProBlogger conference sounds awesome, super cool audience. I love bloggers. I think they’re a fantastic group for me to be presenting to. I think I can make a really good deck, and it’s a great opportunity.

So all right, I’m going to go, but I’m also going to have three or four extra days in Queensland while I’m there. What should I do with those days?
Where should I go? Well, I’ve already been pursuing some interests, doing things around this. I happen to know some stuff about Australian tourism and particularly one of Queensland’s projects.

So I have some awareness preexisting, but the places where I hang out, social networks, technology events, tech and marketing sites have only ever once, once ever seen a company that was smart enough to do marketing alongside an event. It was like a technology search event that I went to in Utah, and a local skiing, snowboarding, slopes company had partnered with the event to run something, an offer, a discount, and this kind of thing. So a ton of people at the conference went to that skiing/snowboarding event, which was very smart because they got a lot of extra rentals. It was kind of off-season for them normally anyway. So very smart.

But these are not places where vacation folks are normally thinking about hanging out. Maybe they should. The questions that I’m asking, those early questions that I’m asking: What time of year? What will the weather be like? What about normal travel things, like adaptors and currency and prices I should expect to pay for all sorts of things? What about tipping customs? All the usual travel questions. Airlines, I’m trying to get from the West Coast of the United States to Australia.

So I have all of these kinds of questions, which a shockingly small number; I think there was maybe one or two hotel websites that I eventually found that offered this type of information. So I had to go research them elsewhere. By the way, those elsewheres were not places where any of those companies were advertising or marketing or had a partnership. What are they doing?

The places that already exist to help me find these potential choices, these are places like the Queensland Tourism Bureau and hotel resort listings and travel aggregators and blogs and forums. This is where I started to see a lot of marketers being intelligent. They had gotten to this research phase already.

But if you can take your marketing efforts and think up the funnel, rather than down, and think about keywords, websites, content, social accounts, potential influencers, all of these types of folks and opportunities, you can have an immense impact on your downstream funnel, and you can do so with far less competition and oftentimes a much larger audience.

So, hopefully, some of you are going to think a little bit earlier in the funnel around your SEO, your social, and your content efforts. We look forward to having you join us again next time for another edition of Whiteboard Friday. Take care.

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