November 30, 2010

SEO and the English Premier League

By Simon Heseltine

I’m English, well technically a dual citizen of the US and the UK, but I hail from Yorkshire.  As the English Premier League season (soccer) has been heating up, I’ve been struck by the similarity between it and SEO.

SoccerballRanking highly matters

In the English leagues there are 92 professional teams, however the big money is only available to those in the Premier League.  The Premier League only contains 20 of those teams.  Where you finish at the end of the season reflects the prize money you earn ,with 1st place taking close to 16Million GBP, and 20th taking just over 700k GBP.  The team that finished 1st in the division below only pockets 50k prize money.  However, teams that finish in the top 4 get to play in the European Champions League the following season, which is highly lucrative, so getting a high ranking really matters.  In SEO… you get the idea.

SoccerballThrowing money != success

Sure, you can have a limitless budget, hire as many of the best resources as possible, with the goal of hitting the top of the rankings.  But as many an oligarch / sheikh / American investor has discovered, there’s only one team that can be at the top of the standings, and it takes time for the investment to pay off, if indeed it ever does.  You don’t get to pick whether you’re number one in the SERPs, you just get to try for it.

SoccerballThe best content doesn’t always win…

…but it generally does well.  A team of superstars takes time to gel, just like it takes time for a search engine to rank content at the top of the SERPs.  Your content may be the best out there, but without the right links, or tweaks to the targeted keywords, you’re not going to displace your competition / that pesky Wikipedia link.

SoccerballROI is important

Over the last 10 years, 2 Premier League clubs have spent themselves into receivership (Leeds and Portsmouth, although technically Leeds didn't enter receivership until after they left the Premier League).  Throwing money they didn’t have into players that didn’t produce.  But what about your site?  If you’re not generating a decent ROI, then you’re not going to be in business for very long, or at the very least, you’re not going to be an employee there for very long.

SoccerballManagerial Buy-in makes a difference

The best way to succeed in online marketing is to have the backing and visible support of the management team.  Without that it’s very difficult to succeed.   In the Premier League, if a player doesn’t have the support of their manager, they can find themselves left on the bench, or played out of position, neither of which is very conducive to success for that player.

SoccerballSuccess breeds success

Over the 18 years of the Premier league, 17 of the titles have gone to either Manchester United, Arsenal or Chelsea  (16 of the last 16 to that triumvirate) .  If you get things right in the search engines you’ll see your site rising up across the board on your target keywords.  The better you do, the more opportunities you’ll have to focus on your conversion driving keywords.

SoccerballThink of the long term

The tenure of a Premier League manager is fairly short.  However, Sir Alex Ferguson of Manchester United has been there since 1986.  During his first season things didn’t go particularly well, and it’s generally regarded that he was on the chopping block, but a couple of good results turned the season around, and he went on to become the most successful manager that England has ever seen (for the record:  he’s Scottish).   Your management should  be willing to allow you to make mistakes when you’re starting out, as long as you learn from those mistakes.  The learning process is what helps you to improve as an SEO, pushing you on to improve.

SoccerballIt’s a team game

Sure, Wayne Rooney may earn an alleged 250k GBP weekly, but without the other players around him he won’t win anything.  Similarly, you need a good dev team, a UI / design team, project managers, and further support in order to succeed.  

SoccerballChanging the rules can change the game

Up until this season a Premier League team could have as many players in their squad as they could afford to keep.  This year the league instituted a maximum squad size of 25 players.  Given the results so far this season, where the top teams are not as far ahead of the chasing pack as they usually are at this time of the season, and several lower rated teams are doing particularly well, this shift appears to have changed the game.  When Google makes an algorithm shift similar things can happen.

So can your site be the Manchester United / Chelsea of Google, or are you doomed to be the next Accrington Stanley?

October 06, 2008

Guess the SEO's Tattoo in 'Whose Tat Iz Dat?'

By David Temple

Dave Snyder of Snydesense was the inspiration for this seo attention diverting post. I sat next to him at a dinner in San Jose during the Search Engine Strategies Conference in August. This is one smart, genuine and quite frankly, likable guy. If you've ever met Dave, one of the first things you notice is he's covered in works of art. I was admiring his tattoos and took a couple of pics.

As I wandered around the next few days and nights I discovered other seo's who had tattoos and wondered if anybody ever noticed them. So I decided to take a few pics along with my new friend Jenny Du, who blogs at What Would Jenny Du? We managed to compile some of the many tattoos of the search world in the next couple of days. This is by no means a comprehensive list but instead a look at those who were willing to share. One seo was willing to share their tattoos but asked that we do not name them, so they shall remain anonymous.

See if you can guess Whose Tat Iz Dat? Simply match the number with the letter. And If you're at SMX East please don't go about stripping your fellow seo's to see if you can match them with the tattoos. Ask nicely and maybe, just maybe, they'll reveal a tat or two.

1. Dave Snyder
2. Jim Boykin
3. Dave Davies
4. Motoko Hunt
5. Greg Hartnett
6. Mike McDonald
7. Brent Csutoras
8. Chris Boggs
9. Jayme Westervelt
10. Brandy Eddings
11. Todd Malicoat
12. Matt Gonzales
13. Anonymous



c. Cimg1530

d. Sdc10102_2





i. Sdc10115

j. Sdc10187


Sdc10217 l.



July 18, 2008

Danny Sullivan Worshipped by Cold Play Fans for His Pimpin' Ride

By Li Evans

I'm here in San Francisco for the BlogHer Conference.  Tonight was the "Newbie Mixer".  I got to meet a few new people.  I also got to catch up with a few search industry folks.

Want to know what the topic of conversation was?

Danny Sullivan's new pimped out, tricked out ride. 


HA!  Gotcha! ;)

But I have it from a very good source Danny's got this new black Mini decked out with all the new gizmos and gadgets there are available for that car.  Apparently all the fans at the ColdPlay concert he went to, were oogling it too.

Hey Danny, glad you are back here in the states, I just hope you can avoid those speeding cameras with that new fancy ride of yours! ;)

May 03, 2008

Fun Photo Fridays: SEO Rapper Chuck Lewis Performs the "PageRank" at Unleashed

By Li Evans

Well I'm a day late today, with posting our Friday photo, but I think waiting for this post might be well worth it.  Not only do I have a fun photo, but I have a fun video too!

The folks who ran Search Engine Guide's Unleashed Small Business Marketing Conference treated the conference goers to a live performance on the night before the conference started.  Chuck "SEO Rapper" Lewis of PopLabs entertained the crowd with his newest rap entitled "Code Design".  Chuck also showed us a few of his own dance moves, which I captured here.  In this photo, Chuck's demonstrating the "Page Rank".

Fun Photo Fridays: SEO Rapper Chuck Lewis Performs at Unleashed

If you like this photo of SEO Rapper Chuck Lewis Performs the "PageRank" at Unleashed, feel free to comment and favorite it as that's how we'll be judging the photos at the end of the year! Check out the rest of the fun at Unleashed Small Business Marketing Conference, there's almost 200 photos total!

So I also promised a video!  I shot this video of Chuck's live performance at Unleashed.  If you are interested in seeing his other videos check out Chuck Lewis' m0serious YouTube Channel, he's got all his SEO Raps out there.  Hope you enjoy!

November 06, 2007

A SEO Professional on Dr. Phil

By Li Evans

Anyone watch Dr. Phil today?  I get an IM to turn on the show and what do my wandering eyes fall upon.....


Apparently "Dick" really doesn't like women and thinks that "all women are whores".  He was part of a show that introduced "The House of Judgment".  He even has a site

Dick, wasn't alone in this "judgment" episode, there were six total people, 4 women and 2 men.  One of those women is Dick's new roommate, and boy does Shirley hate men - imagine that! That should make for interesting conversation, shouldn't it?  So all six of these people have to go and live in Dr. Phil's house, first episode on them following them around is on Monday.

Have to say "Dick", you never cease to amaze us, sure hope that boss of yours is paying ya well! ;)

Check out the rest of the pics I caught from Dick on Dr. Phil.

October 09, 2007

SEO High School Confidential - Premiere Edition!

By Li Evans

I think I'm going to start another column called "SEO High School Confidential", what do you think?  I'm a little tongue in cheek with that, and I can't take full credit for the name ..... my coworker Bill helped me come up with the name.

Remember that game where you start where on one end of the circle and whisper in the persons ear and by the time it got back to you i was totally distorted and wasn't anything close to what was started with?  It's like that.

I also recently said in conversation, I want to see all my friends happy and hanging out again - not this back biting, name calling stuff, let's beat the big guy while he's up there.  I want to see happy people - not bright shiny happy people holding hands (yes, that's REM and I'm dating myself), but happy, laughing people.

So in light of that desire....I present the SEO High School Confidential ..... totally, absolutely untrue, but rather ridiculously misconstrued tales from around the industry, that I hope will bring a chuckle to your day.

  • Bo_duke_dukes_of_hazzard_2 It has been reported that Chris Winfield really does like to dress up as Bo Duke on the weekends, pictures have surfaced of him dying his dark hair blond, not putting gel in it (*gasp the horror*) and feathering his hair (my my what would Jonathan say?).

    Apparently Danielle, his wife, is also having trouble with his weekend hobby. Poor gal, cannot keep up with designing him new jeans every weekend.  It seems that Chris isn't as limber as he use to be as he seems to rip every pair of jeans he wears .... every time he attempts to slide across the hood of the General Lee.

Continue reading "SEO High School Confidential - Premiere Edition!" »

September 19, 2007

Talk Like a Pirate Day: Arrrg! Avast Ye Mateys, I Need Some Grog

By Li Evans

Li's Pirate Halloween SkullToday is one of my favorite days of the year.  Only because, something I'm rather fanatical about (other than the Eagles), has it's own "day".  What would that be?  Well today is "Talk Like a Pirate Day"!

It's no longer just an "Internet Thing" either.  As I discuss this day with Jenn Laycock, she informs me that both Noggin and Dora are doing something with Pirates today, too.

Well I took a look around the internet to see what I could find, and all I could find was a logo on Flickr:
flickr's pirate day logo

Now Barry over at SearchEngineRoundtable found a Dogpile logo (I still can't get it to come up), and he's got some talented graphics gurus over there, because even SER has a cool Pirate logo,  *wistful sigh*  I wish I was nearly as talented with Photoshop, SMG would be sportin' a Jolly Roger at the top of our sign post!

The best I can come up with, is my little red Escort ZX2:

Li's ZX2

If you'd like to see the rest of my zany collection of Pirate stuff, check out my Pirate Stuff Flickr Set

Otherwise, "Grab a mug o' Grog, sit yer limey arse down and enjoy tha day!"

May 10, 2007

Google's Gender Bias

By Li Evans

Our new SMG writer, Alex, passed an interesting find my way.  Google's apparently got something against women.  Now I know this sounds extremely silly, and well, rather sexist, but their own search results prove it.


Over at Back In Skinny Jeans, they took it a bit further by testing out:

  • She discovered
  • She published
  • She led
  • She directed
  • She created

All came up with the same "did you mean" results.


No, I really do not believe this is intentional on Google's part, and nor do I believe there's some kind of stereotype going on here within the Googleplex.  Just and interesting find that I actually find it a little humorous enough to share!

April 01, 2007

Technorati Closes April Fool's Day 2007

By Li Evans

Just one more April Fool's Day item to share.  Technorati has been changing out their logo all day today.  I didn't notice it until tonight and I got this logo:


I thought "oh this has to be an April Fool's Day prank".  I did a little search and apparently they have been changing out their logos all day and Frivolous Motion's got the whole collection of different logos, hattip to Kevin M. Keating, Frivolous Motion's author, for putting together that post!

Microsoft to Buy Digg - April Fools?

By Li Evans

Alchemistmedia In what I think could very well be another total absolute April Fool's prank, Jessie's got a post out on her blog (The Alchemy of Search) about a draft press release that is going to be released tomorrow.  The press release indicates that Microsoft is going to buy Digg.

REDMOND, Wash. – April 2nd, 2007 – Microsoft Corporation (Nasdaq: MSFT) announced it has reached an agreement to acquire Digg, Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

The deal has been in the works for several weeks, according to Microsoft spokesman Mario Nette, who noted that, “Digg is a pioneer in crowd sourcing, the Web 2.0 way of discovering what is important to a new generation of technology-friendly consumers. The Digg community is our natural consumer base and this acquisition is a great opportunity to connect with them. Digg users are passionate about Microsoft products and we are anxious to engage them through this new channel.”    ...

Yeah, as bizarre as that sounds - I can only guess that this is a total April Fool's Day prank, especially since Diggrz hate Microsoft! 

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