Online advertising, and especially its bulky older brother, “programmatic,” are darlings of the digital marketing world. Even folks who typically focus on the content and SEO side are dipping into the implications of bot-driven ads. The ability to deliver highly targeted display ads and sponsored content to key consumer segments, with (literally) super-human speed and precision sounds like the data-driven answer businesses have been waiting for since the dawn of “personas.” But what if there’s something wrong? Not with programmatic, but with the system itself: the vehicle on which ads arrive on consumers’ desktops and phone screens? For many niche and local publications, plans for profitability already feel tenuous; if a startup with $132 million in the bank and a network of incredible talent can’t foresee sustainability in digital ads, what do the next few years look like for the little guys? The Medium move Earlier this month, Ev Williams, … [Read more...] about What does Medium.com’s profit model pivot say about the future of online advertising?
While there are some websites that are doing e-commerce incredibly well (looking at you, Amazon), there are very few that cover all of the bases: SEO-optimized, easy to navigate, mobile-friendly and fast. Generally, e-commerce websites miss out on at least one key piece of the puzzle. That being said, if you were to sew together elements from many different websites, you could create a powerful e-commerce Frankenstein. That’s the idea of this post. I’m going to show you my ideal home page, category page, product page, blog, mobile website and site based on speed. Read on if you dare! Homepage: BikeBandit It may not be “pretty,” but I like what BikeBandit has going on with their homepage. They carry a ton of inventory, which can make it tough to navigate. They do a great job of structuring the homepage with a search bar in plain sight, and the icons make it easy to pick the right category. They have four clear reasons why you should shop with them. If you have … [Read more...] about My SEO optimized & UI-friendly e-commerce Frankenstein
Link building has had a rough year. Thanks in part to Google’s John Mueller’s comments that link building, in general, is a strategy to avoid, a number of SEO practitioners have moved away from the practice. More specifically, they’ve flocked to a more natural form of link building involving the creation, syndication and promotion of thoroughly researched original content; the idea here is to attract or earn links naturally without ever manually building a link on an outside source. I’m a big fan of this approach. It’s safe, natural and can earn you a ton of links if your content is good enough. However, I still believe there’s a place for manual link building — as long as your focus is on providing valuable content to your readers. So what exactly differentiates a “good” link from a “bad” link in Google’s eyes? How can you be sure that a link you’ve manually built isn’t just going to get your website … [Read more...] about The 7 Characteristics That Can Make A Link “Bad” For SEO
With the news that Yahoo! would be shutting down the very directory it built its fortune on, it seems wistfully poetic to me that as one human-edited directory leaves us, a new player, ZEEF, has emerged. This past week, I had the opportunity to talk with Rick Boerebach, ZEEF.com’s Co-Founder and Business Developer. Below is a Q&A with Rick, where he discusses the inspiration for ZEEF, how ZEEF will attack the enormous task of curating the web, and what will make ZEEF’s expert-filtered link directory different from others. But first, a little background. What Is ZEEF? ZEEF.com has picked up $2.38M in funding in the past ten months, the latest being a $1.55M Series A (EURO) funding round in September, according to TechCrunch. ZEEF’s funding and current PR surge is fortuitous timing, certainly; but, we all know the challenges faced by human-powered efforts to organize and link to everything on the web. Just look at Yahoo, LookSmart/Zeal, the Open Directory (DMOZ), … [Read more...] about Yahoo Says Goodbye, ZEEF Says Hello
The floodgates have opened. According to a Reuters story, following Tuesday’s European Court ruling establishing a Europe-wide “right to be forgotten” (RTF), Google is preparing for an anticipated “flood” of removal requests across the 28 country jurisdiction. The ruling provided a right to individuals to request (and ultimately compel) removal of unflattering or undesired information about themselves from search results, even if the underlying content is legal and maintained online by a publisher. The European Court offered no tests or procedural guidance to determine what sorts of legal information would be considered “outdated” or “irrelevant.” Right now, the RTF pertains to individuals. It’s not clear whether it will eventually extend to small businesses and even larger companies. But what’s the difference between a private individual requesting removal of a long-ago personal bankruptcy (the facts of the Spanish case … [Read more...] about Google Readies For Flood Of Removal Requests After EU “Right To Be Forgotten” Ruling