Google Personalized Rank More Important Than Page Rank

Browsing through my Google+ stream today I notice a post by Rand Fishkin about how Google+ content is showing up within serps more and more.  It reminded me of a deck I put together back in March, 2012.  The purpose of the deck was to emphasize the importance of Google+ as part of any “SEO” strategy.  It was clear to me, as it was to some others at the time that Google had gone all in with G+ and there was not going to be any turning back.

Remember The Google+ vs Facebook Debate?

You have to remember this was a time when almost everyone was discounting Google+ and trying to compare it to FACEBOOK in terms of a social media platform.  For those that understood how Google operates, and their core mission from their start up days of providing the most relevant results to a visitors query, it was pretty obvious Google+ was going to be essential to performing well in organic search results.

Google Personalization Patents

Back in early 2012 I began to comb over Google’s patents and began to put the puzzle pieces together.  Based upon what I found in the patents it was CLEAR that Google+ was going to be utilized to drive greater personalization of search results.  At the time it was clear that “PERSONALIZED RANK” was going to be more important than “PAGE RANK” going forward.

For SEO’s/Marketers who have been around since Google was a startup, it was pretty clear that Google was going to use Google+ to enable them to finally be able to provide relevant, personalized results.  Yes, they had tried and failed before, but as we all know, there are some pretty smart people over at Google, Inc..  They learned from past mistakes, took their time and it was clear they were going “all in” with Google+ as their “personalization engine”.

Google Personalization: It’s All About Terms, Categories, and Links

I found a post that Bill Slawski posted in September, 2012 about Google user profile personalization and Google+ based upon his reviews of Google patents.  In his post, he still questioned whether Google was going to use Google+ to help with personalization.

As I mentioned previously, Google has always maintained that their primary goal is to return the most relevant results possible for any given query.  Their “Page Rank” based algorithm was a game changer, but it still has flaws, which they quickly discovered.  The biggest issue with the page rank algorithm is that it can be “gamed”, as we all know.  Google has spent a decade updating, and tweaking their algorithm with funny animal named patches in an effort to slow down the “gamers”.

However, way back in 1998 Google knew that “personalization” was the key.  They continually tried to build in systems and applications that would allow them to know more about the search visitor, so that they could provide more relevant results to that visitor.

Based upon Google’s patents at the time, there are 3 key profiles for determining their “personalized rank”, categories, terms and links.  Below is the slide I created explaining these profiles.

Google personalization profiles

 

Google Personalized Rank: How Does Google+ Help?

Within Google personalization patents I found that they list numerous personalized ranking factors.  The factors that I believe can be influenced the most by Google+ are direct connections, relevance, degree of separation, engagement, age, popularity, and authority.  In my opinion the most important factors that Google+ helps with are direct connections and the degree of separation.  Below is the slide…

Google personalized ranking factors

 

Content From Websites Connected to Google+ Pages I’m Connected to Bubble to the Top of Search Results!

As Rand points out in the whiteboard mentioned at the beginning of this article, Google+ content “bubbles” up to the top of search results when you are logged into a Google account.

Personalized Content

 

At the time what was so interesting to me was that content on a website that was relevant to my search would rise to the 1st page of results, just because a Google+ page that I was following, was linked to it!  Content from a web site that was NEVER shared or posted to Google+!

The below images illustrate how content from a web site climbed to the top of results just because a Google+ page I was follow was “linked” to the site (recommended links within Google+ about section).

 

 

Following-Personalized

It’s Vital To Create Direct Connections With Individuals (building social authority):  Google+ is the Tool!

It seems that Google values direct connections between content and you in order to provide personalized search results.  Because of this, as a web site owner, or brand it is important to “connect” your content with as many individuals as possible.

Google+ About Page Best Practices

Remember, the personalization patents mention 3 distinct profiles for each individual, so there are a lot of factors in play, but having direct connections is very important!

MORE CONNECTIONS = MORE SOCIAL AUTHORITY

Use Google+ to build social authority

 

Google+ Best Practices

There are a lot of posts out there about Google+ best practices, but here is what I had mentioned in early 2012.

Google+ best practicesStop Worrying About Google’s Page Rank and Start Worrying About Google’s “Personalized Rank”!

If you are reading this then I’m sure you have already read about how Google has recently stated people are “obsessing” over page rank and they need to get over it.  There has been numerous posts about how Google hasn’t updated the page rank toolbar and doesn’t plan to anytime soon.

Personalized rank of content is already a primary element of Google’s search engine and will continue to become more prominent within Google’s search results over time.

Thoughts?

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DMCA – Effective Tool to Eliminate Competition?

Okay, we all know you shouldn’t be copying content from other websites, right?  But, after noticing an “interesting” use of DMCA complaints, I began to wonder if DMCA complaints are being used by some to eliminate competition from SERP’s?

I’ve noticed some DMCA removals within some personalized legal SERPS over the last few months.  Some lawyer related searches I performed displayed a notice that some results were removed because of  DMCA violations.

Here’s an example:

DMCA violation notice

Since this was only displayed in my personalized results (logged into Google+) I figured I must be “following” or connected to the “violator” in some way.  So, looking at the DMCA complaint I found that I was following 1 of the 4 listed violators

In this case, it was one of the large legal directories that I follow.  The specific page noted in the DMCA complaint was UGC from an attorney.  But, according to the publish date on the page it was “Posted over 3 years ago.”.

Which Site Has The Original Content?

That must mean that if the content was “copied” from the “original site” as claimed in the DMCA, then I should be able to find it in the web archive in 2010.   So, I did a search in the web archive for the specific page noted in the DMCA complaint, and it is not in the web archive.  Okay, so maybe they changed the url.  I began looking through the site that was archived in 2010 and could not find the content by browsing through the available links.

I checked 2011 and 2012 archives and still couldn’t find it…what gives?  Could the archive has missed this copyrighted material, or did the site make it so hard to find that I can’t locate it using the links on their archived pages?   I will note that the “claimed” original content is very easy to find using the sites “new”  layout…

Okay, so the “violator” that I’m following shows the content was on their site over 3 years ago, so I went to the archives to check that out.  I searched for the specific url listed in the DMCA complaint, and there it is in the archive dated April 10, 2010.  In addition, the archived page says “Posted 8 days ago.”   So, it seems this “violator” posted the content on April 2, 2010.

How Did Google Verify The DMCA Claimant Published The Content First?

We all know Google spiders crawl everything they can, so maybe they have archives showing that the “copyrighted” content was in fact posted on the DMCA claimant’s web site first.  But, I would have thought I could find it in the archive as well, since the site was being archived during the times in question.

Can DMCA Complaints Be An Effective Tool To Eliminate Competition?

The claimants site is maintained by a well known web design and SEO company that specializes in the legal field.  As you may or may not know, the legal field is HIGHLY competitive in terms of online marketing.  So, this made me wonder, is this an isolated case or are there more DMCA complaints like this from the same firm?  Well, as it turns out doing a search for this firms exact name pulls up 190 DMCA complaints starting in May of 2012. Some of the complaints I read noted violations by paragraph and even sentences, so we are not always talking situations where an entire page of content was copied.

It does seem that at least one marketing firm is using DMCA complaints to hit back at competitors that seem to be taking shortcuts in creating content.

Moral of the Story….

  1. Don’t copy content from another site.
  2. Don’t block your site from the Web Archive (user-agent:ia_archiver) unless you have a specific reason of course.  You may want to have a record of your original content in case you get a DMCA notice in your webmastertools….
  3. If you do find that a competitor has copied ANY original content from your site, then file a DMCA.  It seems to be an effective way to get that competitors infringing page/post removed from Google’s index….
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Google SEO Guide – A Great Place To Start

Google SEO Guide for DIY SEO’ers

Okay, so most people on the planet know about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and the importance it plays in today’s online world.  Thanks to Google (sorry Bing/Yahoo your results still stink) we are able to type in what we are looking for into a small text box and get back very relevant results for what we are looking for.   So, this makes it essential that websites are “optimized” for search engines and the Google SEO Guide was created by Google to help people better understand how they can build websites that is easier for Google to understand.  Our SEO company specializes in optimizing websites to rank for targeted key phrases or keywords to help drive traffic to our clients.

Use the Google SEO Guide if you have time and low to moderately competitive keyword targets.

However, we know there are a lot of DIY (Do-it-yourself) types out there that have the time and want to see if they can get search engine rankings on their own.   Depending on the competition and industry you need to rank for, you may just be able to get decent rankings by following the Google SEO Guide recommendations.  Keep in mind that Google is always changing their search engine algorithms which impacts search engine rankings on an almost monthly basis, so this is where an experienced SEO services firm can help you continually achieve high search engine rankings.

Is everything you need to know about SEO in the Google SEO Guide?  No.

You won’t find everything you need to do in order to rank highly for competitive key phrases within the Google search engine guide, but it is a great place to start for DIY SEO’s if targeting low to moderately competitive key phrases.

I’ve been optimizing websites since 1998 and a lot of things have changed over the years in the “SEO” industry, but one thing has remained the same in terms of what Google wants to provide, and that is:  Useful, Relevant Search Results

Google SEO Guide is a great place to start your SEO adventure.

So, the key to ranking high in Google is to figure out how to “show” Google your site is the most useful and relevant site for your targeted key phrases.  The Google SEO Guide gives a very good foundation of the key elements that help “show” Google what your site is all about.  So, read it, learn from it and start building a useful and relevant site!

We can help with what the Google SEO Guide doesn’t teach you.

If you need the help of an experienced SEO consultant, give us a call or use our contact form to get in touch.

 

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Criminal Lawyer Marketing SEO Services

T3SEO was contracted to build a new web site for a Virginia Criminal Attorney.  The law firm had used another Richmond web development and seo company, but the website failed to produce phone calls or leads.  This client was referred to T3SEO by another Richmond law firm that has been utilizing T3SEO’s attorney Internet marketing services for several years.

We developed an SEO optimized DUI website for the client and created a Google+ page for their law firm.  Within 30 days the client’s new website was ranking on the 1st page of Google for the majority of our targeted terms.  The client is now receiving calls and leads for Richmond DUI cases from their newly SEO optimized DUI attorney website.

virginia criminal attorney seo marketing

Services Provided:

If you have a law firm and want to rank above your competition, contact us today for a FREE SEO analysis and quote!

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Richmond DUI Lawyer SEO Services

T3SEO was contracted to build a new web site for a local Richmond DUI Attorney.  The law firm had used another Richmond web development and seo company, but the website failed to produce phone calls or leads.  This client was referred to T3SEO by another Richmond law firm that has been utilizing T3SEO’s attorney Internet marketing services for several years.

We developed an SEO optimized DUI website for the client and created a Google+ page for their law firm.  Within 30 days the client’s new website was ranking on the 1st page of Google for the majority of our targeted terms.  The client is now receiving calls and leads for Richmond DUI cases from their newly SEO optimized DUI attorney website.

seo for richmond dui lawyer

Services Provided:

If you have a law firm and want to rank above your competition, contact us today for a FREE SEO analysis and quote!

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Richmond Traffic Attorney SEO Services

T3SEO was contracted to build a new web site for a local Richmond traffic law firmThe law firm had used another Richmond web development and seo company, but the website failed to produce phone calls or leads.  This client was referred to T3SEO by another Richmond law firm that has been utilizing T3SEO’s attorney Internet marketing services for several years.

We developed an SEO optimized website for the client and created a Google+ page for their law firm.  We noticed almost immediate results and within 30 days the client’s new website was ranking on the 1st page of Google for the majority of our targeted terms.  The client is now receiving calls and leads from their newly SEO optimized attorney website.SEO for attorneys

Services Provided:

If you have a law firm and want to rank above your competition, contact us today for a FREE SEO analysis and quote!

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97 Percent of American Looking Online for Local Products and Services

Being visible within search engines and other online media including business directories, social media networks and comparison shopping sites is critical to the survival of your business.  When 97 percent of shoppers say they are looking online for local products and services, it is pretty clear that having an “optimized” website that ranks at the top of results should be a priority.  T3SEO specializes in Search Engine Optimization (SEO Services) to help websites rank on the 1st page of major search engines for the keywords people are searching for.  Contact us today to find out how we can “search engine optimize” your website, products and services where consumers are looking!

“Nearly all consumers (97 percent) now use online media when researching products or services in their local area, according to BIA/Kelsey’s (www.bia.com and www.kelseygroup.com) User View Wave VII, an ongoing consumer tracking study conducted with research partner ConStat. Among consumers surveyed, 90 percent use search engines, 48 percent use Internet Yellow Pages, 24 percent use vertical sites, and 42 percent use comparison shopping sites.

“The Internet has indeed become an integral part of consumers’ local commercial activity,” said Steve Marshall, director of research, BIA/Kelsey. “The data suggest we’re at an inflection point where the balance of power in local shopping is shifting to online.”

According to the study, on average, consumers are using 7.9 different media sources when shopping for products or services in their local area, up from 6.5 sources in 2009 and 5.8 in 2008, revealing a noteworthy increase in audience fragmentation. Additional findings include:

  • 58 percent of respondents report using an online coupon when shopping for products or services in their local area in the past year.
  • 19 percent of respondents report making an appointment online in the past six months for a service other than a restaurant reservation (e.g., business appointment, health-care appointment, auto service or personal service such as a beauty shop).”

Source: http://www.biakelsey.com/Company/Press-Releases/100310-Nearly-All-Consumers-Now-Use-Online-Media-to-Shop-Locally.asp

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Over 2100% Increase in Organic Search Traffic

T3SEO provided SEO strategy and optimization services that helped grow a start-up companies traffic over 2100% in just 14 months! We were able to rank the site within the top 5 positions on Google for some very competitive terms including Free Credit Score. In addition, we helped setup and integrate the companies Google+ page, as well as perform link building, on page seo optimization, and search engine rank reporting.

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SEO Services for 15 Websites – 13 Million Visitors per Month

T3SEO provided SEO services for a network of 15 websites that received a total of over 13 million visitors and 52 million page views per month.  Our search engine optimization recommendations resulted in double and triple digit growth in visitors and page views for the sites within the network.  In addition, our seo recommendations helped drive all time high traffic levels for several of the sites during seasonal and other key events.

Our social media integration and engagement recommendations helped the sites experience triple digit growth in the number of website likes and recommendations.  This growth in social engagement help increase the traffic for all the sites from social media referrals.

Website Samples:

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Over 10 Million Page Views

T3SEO provided search engine optimization services to an online conservative magazine website during the 2010 elections that resulted in over 10 million page views during the week of the 2010 elections.  These traffic results were a dramatic increase from previous election years for the website.

We provided SEO optimization recommendations as well as internal linking suggestions that resulted in the site ranking #2 on Bing and Yahoo, as well as a 1st page ranking on Google for “election 2010”.

Contact our San Jose, California SEO consulting firm today to see how we can get your website ranking high in the major search engines!

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