This Week In SEO 10
Big Brand Links, Devaluing Content, Long Search Queries, & New gTLDs

Another week, another killer update.

As always, before we get into the tips, tricks, and news from the past week, here’s this week’s Quick SEO Tip video.  Watch and find out how to easily identify what kind of content Google wants to rank in their top 10.  This can be a quick win and potentially save you a lot of headaches.


Targeting “Where to Buy” Pages for Large eCommerce Sites

This is a solid, but complicated (in that there are many steps) post on getting large brands to link to your ecommerce site.  It’s a great, in-depth write up on how to generate some tasty links.  Seriously, if you’re in ecommerce, don’t miss this post.  It’s money.

Money Dancing

Even if the post isn’t 100% directly relevant to you, there are a few tips & tidbits (i.e. my Mechanical Turk project settings, a few outreach tips, etc.) that should be useful to anyone.

I wanted a chance to share an advanced link building process that we’ve been using internally for large eCommerce sites that carry thousands of different brands in their inventory.

For these kinds of sites, there’s one type of low-hanging fruit that’s an absolute no-brainer: retailer listing pages on brand websites. To give you an idea of what I mean, try out this search:”where+to+buy”

These brands want to tell people where they can buy their products, and in a lot of cases, they’ll list off online stores. When they do, they usually link. And if they’re to a brand category page on your target site, then there’s none more relevant you could possibly get (i.e. Acer linking to your Acer category page).

Google Planning to DeValue Content Behind Interstitials

You: WTF is an interstitial?

Me: Good question.

An interstitial is a page that is displayed before you reach the content.  It’s like paywall, but temporary, and you have to give it attention instead of money.  Like this:


But in Google’s completely altruistic mission to put the user first, there is talk of lowering the value (in a ranking sense) of the content behind the interstitial.

This, of course, leads to the question of whether they will devalue content with a pop-over or overlay, something that some people suspect has been a negative ranking signal, so many sites code it to only show up on a second page view and not the first, so Googlebot doesn’t see it.

From a user perspective, this is great news. And since we all know Google does put searchers first, it is not surprising that interstitials are on a hit list by Google.

More Findings From Google Phantom Update A.K.A. Quality Update


If you’re having thin content, I feel bad for you son,

…because you’re gonna get penalized.  Knock it off.

At the time of this writing, it’s been seven months since the last Panda update.  That’s a damn long time to be getting 85% less traffic than you used to.  The point of this hmtweb post is that ranking is a long game, and if you get penalized, you need to stay focused on the long game and not try any “tricks” (like URL tinkering) to try and get around the penalty.

It’s not necessarily a filter like Panda, but can act the same way for low quality content on your site. Google says it’s a page-level algorithm, so it presumably won’t drag an entire domain down. The jury is still out on that… In other words, if you have a lot of low quality content, it can sure feel like a domain-level demotion. For example, I’ve seen some websites get obliterated by the Phantom update, losing 70%+ of their traffic starting the week of April 27th. Go tell the owner of that website that Phantom isn’t domain-level. 🙂

Longer Search Queries Are Becoming the Norm: What it Means for SEO

With the rise of mobile phones and voice/dictation searches, longer queries are becoming a thing.


This post talks about how to take advantage of these longer/long tail searches from an SEO stand-point.  Though the recommendations in the post are a bit obvious, it’s still good to think about them, and consider if you are addressing them or not.

Your first step is to eliminate any trace of keyword-based SEO tactics from your overall campaign. Stuffing your site’s titles, descriptions, and articles with keywords in the hopes of ranking for associated user queries is no longer effective. Google doesn’t even consider keyword matching as part of its ranking algorithm anymore, and user queries are so long and complex that it wouldn’t matter even if it did. Add to that the fact that over-stuffing your site with keywords can actually earn you a ranking penalty, and trying to rank by using specific keywords becomes a potential disaster.

A Breakdown On the Numbers For New .gTLDs

Possibly of interest to SEOs, these are the cold, hard numbers.

The biggest loss of domain registrations on its first renewal appears to be .Guru which was around 83,000 registrations in April and now has around 68K

The number of new gTLD’s registration by Donuts sits at 1,363,369.

The big question, though, is where is SEO.GURU, and when will he/she save us all??

TWS11: Google Helping Google, The End of WHOIS, and More
TWS9: G+ Fading, .Gov links, Pinterest Buy-now Buttons & More

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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.
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