Digital Marketing


How Diverse is 'People Also Ask'? An Intent Analysis Study

Related Questions, or as most of us know them, People Also Ask (PAA), has developed into one of the more intriguing features on the Google SERP. The feature is both prominent and powerful. This dynamically loading set of what are all but Featured Snippets has the potential to seriously alter a user's search process or search 'journey' if you will.

I wanted to qualify that potential a bit by analyzing what intent looks like inside the PAA box.

  • How many intents are represented by the initial four PAA questions?
  • Does Google prefer to dig deep into one specific topic or does Google prefer to offer a broader topical look with its PAA questions?
  • Does Google give one intent more attention than another?
  • Does Google treat one keyword category and type differently than another in regards to the PAA?

What Exactly Is the Difference Between Google's Neural Matching & RankBrain?

When Danny Sullivan recently tried to explain the difference between neural matching and RankBrain I was initially left scratching my head. I thought, why does this have to be so complicated? Couldn't the difference between neural matching and RankBrain be explained in a tangibly concrete well structured and "scaffolded" manner?

What Should Keyword Research Look Like in 2019 (and Beyond)?

Oh no! Here comes another post boding how to do [insert SEO tactic] in 2019! I bet they just took 2018's post and revamped it for 2019. But you know better than that by now! In fact, this is the first "how to do whatever in [insert year]" that I've written. Which means, there's a good reason. A lot has changed in SEO, particularly towards the end of 2018. These changes have been so subtly dramatic that I believe it has created a new mold for executing some solid keyword research.

What Is the Market Share of Featured Snippet URLs? [Study]

To what extent do URLs share a Featured Snippet? What happens when Google uses more than one URL inside a Featured Snippet? Is there one URL that dominates the zero position box? What happens when Google oscillates between more than two URLs - how much visibility does each URL get?

Based on the results of our last Featured Snippet study, which analyzed how often Google changes a URL inside of Featured Snippets, we wanted to know what the market share of a Featured Snippet URL looks like.

Here's what we found.

SERP Features in 2018 - How Stable Were They? [Study]

Whether you score or compete with SERP features, it behooves us to know how stable they are. How consistent is Google with its SERP feature showings? Which features tend to display at consistent levels from one month to the next? Which features are subject to heavy amounts of display fluctuations?

This is your comprehensive look at SERP feature stability, volatility, and consistency. This is your look at SERP feature fluctuations in 2018!

How Often Does Google Change Featured Snippet URLs? [Study]

Scoring Featured Snippets is just one of those SEO topics that has become almost mythological. Getting your URL into a zero position box is the win of all wins. But while we're all talking about winning, Google is shifting URLs in and out of Featured Snippets much the way a disc jockey switches music tracks during a radio broadcast. This, of course, begs the question... how often does Google change URLs within its Featured Snippets?

Cracking the Code: Determining How Google Interprets Intent

What is the intent of a user when they enter a search term? Rather, what are the multiple layers of intent that Google sees in that query? What has Google determined to be important when showing results for a given keyword? Google has gotten far better at parsing search terms according to the multiple intents embedded within them.

But how are you supposed to determine how Google understands intent for a search term? How do you know what content Google thinks is relevant to users? How can you determine how Google understands intent?

Here's a simple method that's worked for me.

A Look Back at SEO in 2018

What a year in the world of SEO. Sure, I say that every year, but 2018 certainly had its share of game-changing developments. Predisposed to a high volume of SEO themes, be it mobile-first or Google's new "journey" outlook on search, 2018 has a flavor all unto itself.

Now then, there are just way too many stories for me to cover in one post to catch everything that we saw hit the floor in SEO during 2018. What's to come is my best crack at grabbing all of the major stories, the biggest changes, and the most interesting advancements that came out of the world of search in 2018.

Here we go!

Why Ranking Above the Fold Matters More Than Ever (& How to Get There!)

As time has gone on, how we measure effective Google rankings has evolved. We're at one of those moments in time (again) where the ranking paradigm is changing/has changed. As you'll see, ranking above the fold is more important than ever. It's why we created a tool as part of our Beta Blitz SEO reporting initiative that tells you just that: Are you ranking above the fold or can no one see your site despite it ranking so well?

So then, why is ranking above the fold so important and how do you get there? The experts weigh in.

Keyword Cannibalization: How to Identify It, How to Fix It!

Keyword cannibalization is one of those SEO buzzwords that carries with it a certain myth and mythology. But behind the commonly held ethos of how keyword cannibalization is perceived lies a real problem that could impact your site and more importantly your bottom line. If you're wondering what keyword cannibalization is, what it's not, why it's a problem, and what you can do about it, then this post was written for you. If not, give it a read anyway, what do you have to lose?

Has AMP Hit a Wall?

Back in 2016, AMP, Google's open source project to make a speedier mobile web , was all the rage. AMP was going to be the next big thing. Fast forward three or so years into the future and AMP, while still significant, is not the dominant force we thought it would be. AMP seems to have lost a bit of steam. Though still very much a part of the search marketing dialogue, AMP has faced some pretty significant obstacles that have downgraded its "SEO prestige."

Here's why I think AMP has hit a wall.

Google's 20th Anniversary Search Updates - What Do They Mean for the Future of SEO?

Google took its 20th anniversary as an opportunity to hang a pinata of search updates that have already begun to rain down on us. From "topic layers" in what is an all but transcendental Knowledge Panel, to Google pulling site content to create its own version of AMP Stories, the updates announced at Google's 20th birthday bash event are set to change the way users interact with search.

Here's what I think the common denominator between the changes is, what it means for search, and what you might want to do about it!



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