This Week In SEO 44
SEO Audit, Evergreen Content, & Google Updates


Official Google Updates

Guidelines for bloggers who review products they receive for free


Google has caught on to your link-building schemes. No longer can you send beef jerky or facial scrub to review sites in return for that sweet, sweet DoFollow link.

New guidelines now indicate you must:

  1. Use NoFollow links
  2. Disclose the relationship
  3. Write compelling, unique content


As a form of online marketing, some companies today will send bloggers free products to review or give away in return for a mention in a blogpost. Whether you’re the company supplying the product or the blogger writing the post, below are a few best practices to ensure that this content is both useful to users and compliant with Google Webmaster Guidelines.


The Webmaster Blog has a new domain name

New google webmaster url

You can find the new site at, instead of the old address:


…starting today, Google is moving its blogs to a new domain to help people recognize when they’re reading an official blog from Google. These changes will roll out to all of Google’s blogs over time.

Even GOOGLE doesn’t use blogspot anymore…


16 SEO Experiments

I love SEO experiments. Even research-backed SEO experiments can be easily disproven, because the algorithms that drive search placement can be manually tweaked to cloud the waters.

That’s the case with the first of the 16 experiments presented in the post. Rand Fishkin’s CTR test produced an amazing result, pushing a result halfway down the page up to the #1 spot in a matter of hours.

When SEO Sherpa sought to reproduce the same test, they ran into some very lackluster, inconclusive results.

Rand was concerned that in response to his public post showing how clicks may influence Google’s results more directly than previously suspected, that Google may have tightened their criteria around this particular factor.

It could be that the private tests didn’t use enough clicks for the niche, or that the clicks were not as diverse as when Rand tweeted, or 500 other things that weren’t controlled.

In trying the test again, they were able to reproduce results similar to the first test (shooting a newly published blog post to the top of the page). So while, in the end, they achieved the same result twice, a series of failed tests between the two successful ones is hard to ignore (though the post seems to do just that).

There are 15 more experiments that are really interesting and worth reading. Like everything else related to SEO, take with a grain of salt…


The Guide to Online Publicity Campaigns

Last week we shared an article on PR wins and fails. This week, we’re highlighting an article that takes you through the process of running an online PR campaign for your business. It takes you through how to publicize yourself, how to take advantage of media tie-ins, how to land great interviews, and more.

It’s a meaty post that deserves your attention if you’re using content to generate traffic (and get links, of course).

“Content marketers” pitch me:

1.) To share or link to some random article, and they do so often when
2.) I have no connection to or interest in the topic at all

Publicists pitch me:

1.) To write about an idea because
2.) They already know that I have a connection to or interest in that topic

I ignore or delete the pitches from “content marketers.” Following the pitches from publishers, I may choose to include their source, study, or idea in some future piece in the publications to which I contribute. Most “link earning” methods are poor imitations of traditional publicity practices.


SEO Audit Checklist


It’s always a good idea to give your site(s) an audit if it’s been a while. Like how you go to the dentist twice a year to make sure all’s well, it’s a good idea to give your site a once-over every now and then to fix any stray SEO issue that could be holding back your organic traffic.

This guide takes you through several steps for making sure everything is okay, from competitor analysis, to keyword cannibalization:

One of the most important factors to look for in an audit is keyword cannibalization.

“Keyword cannibalization” is when two pages are competing for the same keyword.

This can confuse Google and force it to make a decision on what page is “best” for the search query.


Updating Evergreen Content

when you don't update your content

Evergreen content is the BEST content.

In this post, Benjamin writes about how he boosted page views to a two year old post by almost 500%.


  • Rewriting sections of the article with the most up-to-date info
  • Republishing it to bump the freshness date
  • Updating your older metadata

After making these optimizations — which took a grand total of 15 minutes at most — I added the post to our usual content promotion process:

We sent an email out to our blog list, posted it on Reddit, and shared it to our social media accounts with Buffer.

And, within just 4 days, the page climbed from #8 to #3 in Google for its target keyword and traffic to that page increased by 486%.

It’s a great reminder that well-written content can continue to help your SEO game years after you wrote it, so don’t forget about it!

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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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