Smash Digital

This Week in SEO #111

Smash Digital SEO Agency

Hey! Did you see we’ve rebranded to
Smash Digital?

(if not then you might want to get your eyes checked)

If you’re new here, we do a weekly(ish) recap of the best and most important news and tips from the SEO industry. In this weeks edition we cover title tag best-practices, an anchor-text study, and once more… a bunch of schema stuff.

Anchor Text Study

Authority Hackers took a break from trying to capture the search traffic for every single business/website product review imaginable to write/produce a pretty interesting study of anchor text.

The biggest takeaway for me:

In our study, we found a very solid negative correlation with naked URL anchors. It seems to be the factor for evaluating the quality of the backlinks.

It’s not so clear from the chart, but the rank #20 contains on average 50% more naked URL anchors when compared to rank #1.

It might also be the case that higher-ranked pages just get more links from better websites. Forbes isn’t going to use a naked URL as anchor text, right?

A worthy thought experiment. I know I’ve spent time trying to hedge against future Google updates by diversifying anchor text–but is trying to diversify strategically itself a footprint? Maybe! There’s no one True and Correct answer to this, as things change by niche, and things change over time as Google makes daily tweaks to the algorithm.

The real point of this study: keep your head down and build links, because backlinks matter waaaaay more than anchor text (unless you are really F-ing up your anchor text).

PS: We can help you with link building, check it out, dawg.

Title Tags: Best Practices

If the 80/20 of SEO is backlinks (20% of the work that drives 80% of the results), and you’ve got link building covered, and you’re done obsessing about your anchor text ratio, why not turn your attention to title tags?

All right… damn.

If your main keyword is very short and you don’t have any secondary keywords that are relevant or make sense to add into your title, add a call to action or try to make it catchy.

For example, if your title is simply “Ski Rental Prices” and there are no other keywords that have search volume or make sense targeting, then you can add “50% Discount for 1st Time Clients” or “Best Prices in the Entire Resort”.

This way, you are taking advantage of the real estate instead of wasting it.

Not a bad thing to think about if the rest of your site is optimized and free from errors. If you’ve dealing with shit like thin content, no backlinks, poorly thought-out architecture, these title tag tweaks won’t save you.

Schema Benefits Google, Like Everything, In the End ★★★★☆

Quick lesson:

^ scheming

^ schema

This article on schema is pretty toothless… it’s just showing you examples of schema, basically, and nothing in the way of HOW to implement schema, but there is one point worth considering, and so that’s why it’s featured here:

There is some risk involved with implementing this Schema: if the content is too informational in nature, it can create a situation where users to get the answers they need entirely within the search results. This is exactly what happened when we first rolled out FAQ Schema for one of our clients at Path Interactive — impressions to the page surged, but clicks fell just as quickly.

This screenshot of clicks vs. impressions tells you all you need to know: schema is super good for Google.


WordPress SEO Plugins

Simple and straightforward post on the top tier WordPress plugins you should be using on your WP site. I use probably 85% of these plugins myself. It’s a solid resource, and you may find one or two to add to your arsenal that will make some tangible difference.

Just, do me a favor: don’t just install Yoast and try and hit all the green dots or something. If SEO could be automated like that it’d be a very different industry, but put a little more thought into it. Those green Yoast dots do not an SEO strategy make.

I couldn’t find any solid gifs related to “plug in” so here’s a Glade commercial (“plug it in, plug it in”) edited to include ICP:


Advice For Hiring Content Marketers

If you’ve ever tried to hire content writers for your real high quality, non-bullshit money posts–the posts that require some real content muscle, you probably know:

Siege Media does some solid content work, and they hire a bunch of content marketers. Their process is super involved, and they have good perspective on what hiring a good, lasting content marketer looks like, and what does not work.

So give this a read if you’re in the market, and then lower your standards because you know your pay is super low…

Once the test project is completed, they email it back to us. Our HR manager looks over it and sends it along to myself again, or a content director that’s available. We review the phone interview you’ve had with our HR manager and also the corresponding test project, resume, and all the cover letter information that you’ve provided. So we have a pretty good substantial package of a candidate at this point.

Good stuff!

Bonus Gifs in Honor of the Rebrand: Smash!

We’re all pretty stoked about this rebrand. For one, it’s letting us combine all of our brands under one roof. And for another, it makes finding solid memes and gifs MUCH easier than before 🙂





smash smash smash smash


Get it? We’re Smash Digital


Weeeeeee Smash Digital Rocket of Doom

Follow us on da social:

November Core Algo Update, Bert, Google News, and More!
On Page SEO Guide - The 80/20 Of It All

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