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Marketing in the Age of Google: Your Online Strategy Is Your Business Strategy

Book Description

Search has changed everything. Search has become woven into our everyday lives, and permeates offline as well as online activities.

Every business should have a search strategy. How a business appears online can impact consumer influence as much as if not more than offline advertising like TV commercials. A business's search strategy can have a dramatic impact on how consumers interact with that business.

But even more importantly, search engine activity provides amazingly useful data about customer behavior, needs, and motivations. Accessing search data is like conducting focus groups with millions of people for free. Search isn't just for marketers and techies. It can provide valuable insight on business strategy and product strategy.

Companies of all sizes – from startups to global enterprise level corporations, and even businesses without web sites – can benefit from understanding how consumers are searching for them and talking about them online, both as a powerful acquisition channel and a vast repository of market research.

In this non-technical book forexecutives, business owners, marketers, and product managers, search engine strategy guru Vanessa Fox-who created Google's portal for site owners, Googgle Webmaster Central -explains what every marketer or business owner needs to understand about how search rankings work, how to use search to better understand your customers and attract new ones, how to develop a comprehensive search strategy for your business, and how to build execution of this strategy into the businesses processes. This isn't another book about paid search for advertisers. This book focuses on organic listings – the unpaid results that receive 86% of searcher clicks.

  • Written by search engine guru Vanessa Fox, formerly Google's search engine strategy spokesperson and creator of Google Webmaster Central

  • Explains from a businessperson's perspective how to develop a successful search engine strategy

  • Shows how to use the easily accessible data from search engines to increase qualified traffic, better understand customers, and strengthen customer relationships

  • Reveals how smaller companies can leverage search engine marketing to achieve parity with larger brands

With this book in hand, every businessperson will have the knowledge and the tools to maximize the potential of search engine marketing to build a brand, draw new prospects, and generate sales.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. Foreword
  3. Preface
  4. 1. How Search Has Changed Your Business
    1. 1.1. Doesn't Google Show the Most Relevant Sites to Searchers Without My Input?
    2. 1.2. The Keys to an Effective Search Strategy
      1. 1.2.1. Search as the Entry Point of the Web
    3. 1.3. Every Day, Millions of Potential Customers Are Telling You Exactly What They Want
      1. 1.3.1. How Search Has Changed Marketing
      2. 1.3.2. Buyers Are Shifting to Searching
      3. 1.3.3. Paid Search Isn't Enough
      4. 1.3.4. Organic Search Performance
      5. 1.3.5. The Additional Lift of Ranking in Both Paid and Organic Results
      6. 1.3.6. You Can Get Ahead of Your Competition by Focusing on Organic Search
      7. 1.3.7. How Search Performance Can Impact Offline Ad Campaigns
      8. 1.3.8. Reverse Advertising: Avoiding the Advertising Death Spiral
      9. 1.3.9. How Search Has Changed Business
      10. 1.3.10. Search Data as Market Research
      11. 1.3.11. If You're Not Among Consumers' Choices, They Can't Choose You
      12. 1.3.12. The Level Playing Field of Search
  5. 2. How to Use Search Data to Improve Your Business and Product Strategy
    1. 2.1. How We Use Search for Research: Planning a Trip to Lake Tahoe
    2. 2.2. Market Research: Where the Wild Frontiers of Human Nature Meet the Wild Powers of Technology
      1. 2.2.1. Search Acquisition Strategy: The New Product Strategy and Customer Acquisition Strategy
      2. 2.2.2. Building a Better Digital Camera
      3. 2.2.3. Search Data: A Powerful Source of Market Research
      4. 2.2.4. Using Keyword Research for Market Insights
      5. 2.2.5. How Keyword Research Is Valuable
      6. 2.2.6. Predicting Future Trends
      7. 2.2.7. Search Data as Economic Indicator
      8. 2.2.8. Seasonality and Prediction
    3. 2.3. Using Search Data for Better Business Strategy and Stronger Customer Engagement
      1. 2.3.1. Business Goals
      2. 2.3.2. General Trends
      3. 2.3.3. Diving Into Keyword Research
      4. 2.3.4. Determining Keywords to Use
      5. 2.3.5. Meeting Your Business Goals
      6. 2.3.6. Using Web Analytics Data
      7. 2.3.7. Using Paid Search Data
      8. 2.3.8. Competitive Research
      9. 2.3.9. Site Comparison and Traffic Tools
      10. 2.3.10. Using Search Results for Competitive Intelligence
    4. 2.4. A Better Strategy for Increased Customers and a More Successful Business
  6. 3. How We Search
    1. 3.1. Query Types
    2. 3.2. Determining Intent
    3. 3.3. Query Refinements
    4. 3.4. Using Demographic Data
      1. 3.4.1. How Searchers Interact with Results
      2. 3.4.2. How Working Memory Plays into Evaluating Search Results
      3. 3.4.3. What Compels a Click?
      4. 3.4.4. How Important Is a Number One Ranking?
      5. 3.4.5. Breakdown of the Search Results Page
      6. 3.4.6. Enhancing Your Results
    5. 3.5. How Searchers Evaluate the Page They've Clicked On
      1. 3.5.1. From Page to Conversion
  7. 4. Building Searcher Personas
    1. 4.1. Search Acquisition Strategy Process
      1. 4.1.1. Identify Your Business Goals
      2. 4.1.2. Assess the Market Opportunity
      3. 4.1.3. Evaluate Site Pages for Alignment with Content Strategy
      4. 4.1.4. Assess the Conversion Potential
      5. 4.1.5. Create a Tactical Plan
      6. 4.1.6. Monitor Progress
      7. 4.1.7. Creating Searcher Personas
      8. 4.1.8. Creating Searcher Conversion Workflows
      9. 4.1.9. What Queries to Target
      10. 4.1.10. Ensuring Each Page Has a Clear and Valuable Call to Action
      11. 4.1.11. Site Purpose
      12. 4.1.12. Audience
      13. 4.1.13. The Target Searchers Agenda
      14. 4.1.14. Business Goals
      15. 4.1.15. Conversion Metrics
      16. 4.1.16. Harnessing the Long Tail
      17. 4.1.17. The Hotel without a Sign: Branded Search and the Importance of Title Tags
      18. 4.1.18. You've Been Warned. Search: 2012
  8. 5. How Search Engines Work
    1. 5.1. The Evolution of Search Engines
    2. 5.2. The Introduction of PageRank
    3. 5.3. The Current State of Search Engines
    4. 5.4. How Search Engines Work
    5. 5.5. The Difference between Organic and Paid Results
    6. 5.6. How Search Engines Rank Results
    7. 5.7. How Search Engines Are Using Data About Searcher Intent
    8. 5.8. Search Engine Suggestions and Prompts
    9. 5.9. Personalization
    10. 5.10. Anatomy of a Search Engine Result
    11. 5.11. The Evolution of Organic Search Results: Beyond Web Pages
    12. 5.12. Blended Search: Images
    13. 5.13. Blended Search: Video
    14. 5.14. How Do Universal Results Impact Searcher Behavior?
    15. 5.15. Internationalization
    16. 5.16. Getting Technical: How It All Comes Together
      1. 5.16.1. Crawling
      2. 5.16.2. Indexing
      3. 5.16.3. Ranking
  9. 6. Implementing an Effective Search Strategy
    1. 6.1. Would You Like to Exchange Links with My Site Buy-Cheap-Viagra-While-You-Play-Poker-Online-and-File-a-Mesothelioma-Class-Action-lawsuit.info?
    2. 6.2. Beyond SEO
      1. 6.2.1. Web Architecture
      2. 6.2.2. Strategic Development
      3. 6.2.3. Content Development
      4. 6.2.4. Advertising Initiatives
    3. 6.3. Becoming Too Focused on SEO
    4. 6.4. Search Engine Guidelines and Penalties
    5. 6.5. Building Search into the Process of the Organization
      1. 6.5.1. Content Architecture
    6. 6.6. Marketing, Advertising, and Public Relations
    7. 6.7. Market Research and Product Development
    8. 6.8. Metrics and Analytics
    9. 6.9. Customer Support
  10. 7. Working with Developers
    1. 7.1. Crawling
    2. 7.2. Discovery
      1. 7.2.1. Crawl Allocation
      2. 7.2.2. Indexing
    3. 7.3. Ranking
      1. 7.3.1. Page Components
      2. 7.3.2. Syndication
      3. 7.3.3. Content That's Not Unique
    4. 7.4. Search Engine Tools for Webmasters
  11. 8. How to Cut Through the Data and Get the Actionable Metrics You Need
    1. 8.1. Conversion Rates
    2. 8.2. Defining Goals
    3. 8.3. What's Not Important
    4. 8.4. Competitive Intelligence as a Benchmark to How Well You're Really Doing
    5. 8.5. Having Actionable Analytics Data Is a Competitive Advantage
    6. 8.6. Attribution
    7. 8.7. How eBay Uses Analytics to Inform What They Should Do, Not Just Show What They've Done
    8. 8.8. Can Software Accurately Calculate Attribution?
    9. 8.9. What About Offline Attribution?
    10. 8.10. The Trouble with Data
    11. 8.11. The Value of an Experienced In-House Web Analytics Expert
  12. 9. Social Media and Search
    1. 9.1. What Is Social Media?
    2. 9.2. Other Types of Media
    3. 9.3. Being Visible in Search Results
    4. 9.4. The Synergies of Search and Social Media and PR
    5. 9.5. Online Reputation Management
      1. 9.5.1. Lessons from the TSA
    6. 9.6. Helping Your Company Site to Rank Well
    7. 9.7. Market Research
    8. 9.8. Finding Out Where People Are Talking about You Online
    9. 9.9. Averting a Public Relations Disaster
    10. 9.10. But We Want to Control Our Branding!
    11. 9.11. Tactical Suggestions
    12. 9.12. The Value of User-Generated Content for Search Acquisition
    13. 9.13. You Can Compel Visitors by Being Compelling
  13. 10. What's Next?
    1. 10.1. New Search Interfaces
      1. 10.1.1. Image Search
      2. 10.1.2. Mobile Search
    2. 10.2. Social Search and Real-Time Search
  14. Notes
  15. References