This Week In SEO
Yandex, Backlinks, Ranking With Content & Google Getting “Loved Tenderly”


Hey there Guys and Gals, It’s April 22nd, 2015.  That means the Google Mobile Algorithm update lovingly called “Mobilegeddon” is rolling out as we speak.  Hopefully you’ve double-checked that your site was mobile friendly, and you’re not seeing a dive in the rankings.

Here’s a quick overview of the update if you’ve been procrastinating.  Find out what the update is, and how to check if you’re site will be fine:

google mobile update infographic

Remember that these big updates don’t just happen like a gun-shot, they roll out over a week or two. So if you’re not noticing much (hopefully on your poorly optimized competitors) don’t worry, it might just not have happened yet. Or… it might just be a big Google propaganda ploy, but I doubt it.

Next up, I think my tweet can speak for itself here:

Travis Jamison Twitter

French Senate Backs Bid to Force Google to Disclose Algorithm Workings!!
Boom Google Boom

Wow.  This would definitely change the SEO game, but would it make it easier or more difficult? Personally I’m against it as the noobs would run crazy causing hassle for us vets. As the article says, it’s been a tough week for Google in Europe.  A five-year-long anti-trust suit is ramping up, and could result in a fine that runs into the billions.  Stay tuned to this one…

Meanwhile in France, the upper house of parliament yesterday voted to support an amendment to a draft economy bill that would require search engines to display at least three rivals on their homepage. And also to reveal the workings of their search ranking algorithms to ensure they deliver fair and non-discriminatory results

Realistic SEO – Understanding rank potential

rank potential

How do you determine the ease or difficulty of ranking a site in a particular niche?  Nick Eubanks takes it to another level in this impressive post by trying to figure out the cost of ranking for a particular keyword.  Highly recommended.  If you’re a beginner you’ll learn a lot, but an intermediate to advanced SEO will really appreciate this research.

Rank potential is an analytical approach to understanding where a given webpage can actually rank in organic search, with respect to two axes of consideration; time and investment*.
It’s not realistic to project that you’re going to outrank a Wikipedia page for an informational query, or a Fortune 500 brand for their brand or branded product name – at least not without significant investment, if ever. My approach is to analyze a page’s rank potential based on the qualitative SEO metrics for the current top 10 ranking URL.

Yandex to Bring Back Links to Their Ranking Algorithm

Yandex SEO

I’m particularly fond of this update, as it lets me know that backlinks aren’t losing value anytime soon. More than a year ago, Matt Cutts said that Google had experimented with search results that don’t use links as a ranking factor, but “the quality looks much much worse.”  In December 2013, fed up with SEOs that kept buying links and manipulating the SERPs, Yandex (Russia’s biggest search engine) pulled links as a ranking signal.  But things didn’t go so well, and now they are bringing back the links.  The main reason why?  Stubborn search engine optimizers:

Alexander Sadovsky – Head of Natural Search at Yandex, confirmed at the Bynet conference in Minsk Belarus today that Yandex will be changing the way links are handled in its algorithm for commercial queries in the Moscow region. He says that Yandex was disappointed with the inertia shown by the search industry, which showed only a 16% reduction in the acquisition of paid links even despite them being told that Yandex was ignoring them.

How Content Can Increase Rankings Without Links

number of links from content

I’m a big believer in content. I’ve bitched about people ignoring this for years now. Thin sites ranking for big-money keywords is not the future of SEO.  This post is a fascinating look at the different aspects of using content as an SEO strategy.  This post not only the size of a post’s wordcount, but dives deeper into how click-through-rate increases rankings, and the amount of links different kinds of content attract.  Good stuff.

There is a misconception that all content is capable of attracting links. In reality, certain types of content are more likely to attract links than others and these can vary by site. For we found that news, research and entertainment content attracted the most links. “How To” or guide type content, which people are often advised to create, attracted few links by comparison.

To put that quote into Travis-esque terminology. If you’re a local plumber, no one wants to link to your boring article on drain cleaning. You have to manufacture those links yourself.

16 Actionable Copywriting Secrets That Will Drive More Traffic to Your Site

Brian Dean’s post mostly focuses on tips that will help your site with click-through-rate, engagement, and bounce rate (which we know is a ranking factor), so it’s definitely worth a read.  The section on LSI (latent semantic indexing) and why it’s important to SEO is one of the best, easiest to understand explanations I’ve seen.  If you check it out just for that, you’ll get your money’s worth, but it’s a great overview of ways to tweak your copy to increase rankings (and a great companion post to the Dejan post you just read about).

Today’s super-smart Google doesn’t care how many times you cram a keyword into your article. Instead, it pays close attention to Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) keywords. (LSI keywords are a fancy way of saying: “synonyms and closely related words”). And these LSI keywords help Google understand what your page is all about.”

This Week In SEO - KW Research, Facebook & Writing Copy
This Week In SEO - Mobile, Doorways & Parasites

Learn How To Rank Your Site

Get our simple, straightforward guide on how to rank your site.

Sean Markey

Sean Markey

Obsessive consumer of SEO news and strategies, writes the This Week in SEO column. Loves playing drums and writing fiction. Bets you he can throw a football over them mountains.
dotted line pointing to the void

Smash your traffic records with quality SEO.

SEO emphasis line

If you’re tired of the empty promises… Tired of the mediocre results…
Tired of SEO companies taking you for a ride… Tired of reading the word tired…

Let Smash Digital help.

Scroll to Top