Post of the Week
Algorithm Analysis in the Age of Embeddings
I'm so happy to be featuring this as my Post of the Week. The Blind Five Year Old blog was one of the first blogs that really got me into SEO. This is AJ Kohn's first post since January, and as always, it's insightful, interesting and practical. Check out 'Algorithm Analysis in the Age of Embeddings', and then get lost in all of his other great posts!
How to Work Effectively with Google Search Console Data to Analyze Google Updates
Very interesting post on how to use Google Search Console to analyse Google updates. The author found that with Search Console you are likely to get at least 5x, if not even 10x, the amount of keywords in comparison to third party SEO tools. With that in mind, it makes sense that we use Search Console for our own domains to harness as much data as we can to understand changes to SERPs.
How to rank for head terms
I saw this presentation by Tom at Searchlove, and it was one of my favourites. There's no doubt that the fundamentals are still important to rank on Google, but we need to start adapting our search strategies to rank in those higher positions.
Entity Extraction Tool (Chrome Extension)
This is such a cool tool I spotted being shared incessantly on Twitter. The Chrome extension uses the Dandelion API to extract entities from SERPs, and then ranks the top 10 entities weighted by ranking position and the most common.
21 SEO Interview Questions and Answers to Ace Interviewing SEOs
If you're looking to expand your SEO team, this post is for you. In our competitive industry, it's incredibly difficult to hire the right talent, so these 21 questions provided by Content King should help you find your next SEO star.
This week's issue has been made easy by the quality of the articles published in the last week or so. Our Post of the Week, Algorithm Analysis in the Age of Embeddings, by one of my favourite SEO bloggers AJ Kohn, looked at the obsession with Google's Rater Guidelines, and why we should stop focussing on E-A-T in particular (which sparked a bit of a twitter debate here).
I have a similar opinion. Google's Rater Guidelines are only interesting to see where Google's heading; their aspirations. There are too many SEOs making groundless recommendations based on August's update, and the change to Raters Guidelines, without taking a step back, and comprehending how Google might reflect E-A-T algorithmically.
Rand recently tweeted this, which I think perfectly sums up our industry reaction to Google updates:
"Google launches an algo update:
Making reactive changes to updates is often the worst thing we can do. After all, Google is now making thousands of them each year. What we should be doing is learning more about the trend of updates they're making, which can often be done by looking at the SERPs.
Here's a bad analogy about weather: to work out whether it's going to rain or not in the next half an hour, we can usually just look up to the sky. Based on what we've seen before, there are certain characteristics we associate with rain clouds; dark grey, low to the ground, blanket-like across the sky etc. There are then technical characteristics forecasters can use to make even better predictions, such as low surface pressure, wind direction and speed.
So where the hell am I going here? I think the same way of breaking down a problem can be applied when analysing updates and rankings. The SERPs give us the majority of the information we need first and foremost. The pages that are ranking show:
To expand on this, we can then use some of the tools at our disposal to augment our understanding of the problem, eg. are links still important to rank head terms in top positions (check Tom's post below 😉)
Please ignore the '5 ways to optimise your website for E-A-T' posts, head over to the SERPs and do your own testing.Andrew Charlton