Last month we soft launched SEOTools.net. Here are a few entries as a sample of things to come...
- SEO copywriting
- Introduction to competitive research
- Researching subdomains with SEMRush
- Researching affiliates with Keyword Spy
... do subscribe to the RSS feed if you like what you see thusfar.
Why create yet another site about SEO?
Good question, glad you asked. ;)
Our customer base on this site consists primarily of the top of this pyramid. I can say without doubt that I know that some of our customers know more about SEO than I do & that generally makes them bleeding edge. ;)
And then some people specialize in local or video or ecommerce or other such verticals where there are bits of knowledge one can only gain via first hand experience (eg: importing from China or doing loads of testing of YouTube variables or testing various upsells). There is becoming so much to know that nobody can really know everything, so the goal of our site here is to sorta bring together a lot of the best folks.
Some people newer to the field & a bit lower down on the pyramid are lucky/smart enough to join our community too & those who do so and participate likely save anywhere from 1 to 3 years on their learning curve...leveling up quickly in the game/sport of SEO. But by and large our customers are mostly the expert end of the market.
We could try to water down the community & site to try to make it more mass market, but I think that would take the site's leading strength and flush it down the toilet. In the short run it would mean growth, but it would also make the community less enjoyable ... and this site is as much a labor of love as it is a business. I think I would burn myself out & no longer love it if the site became noisy & every third post was about the keyword density of meta tags.
What Drives You?
When SEOBook.com was originally created SEO was much less complex & back in 2003 I was still new to the field, so I was writing at a level that was largely aligned with the bulk of the market. However, over the past decade SEO has become much more complex & many of our posts tend to be at a pretty high level, pondering long-term implications of various changes.
When there are big changes in the industry we are usually early in discussing them. We were writing about exact match domains back in 2006 and when Google's algorithm hinted at a future of strong brand preference we mentioned that back in 2009. With that being said, many people are not nimble enough to take advantage of some of the shifts & many people still need solid foundational SEO 101 in place before the exceptions & more advanced topics make sense.
The following images either make sense almost instantly, or they look like they are in Greek...depending on one's experience in the field of SEO.
My mom and I chat frequently, but she tells me some of the posts here tend to be pretty deep / complex / hard to understand. Some of them take 20 hours to write & likely read like college dissertations. They are valuable for those who live & breathe SEO, but are maybe not a great fit for those who casually operate in the market.
My guess is my mom is a pretty good reflection of most of the market in understanding page titles, keywords, and so on...but maybe not knowing a lot about anchor text filters, link velocity, extrapolating where algorithm updates might create future problems & how Google might then respond to those, etc. And most people who only incidentally touch the SEO market don't need to get a PhD in the topic in order to reach the point of diminishing returns.
Making Unknowable SEO More Knowable
SEO has many pieces that are knowable (rank, traffic, rate of change, etc.), but over time Google has pulled back more and more data. As Google gets greedier with their data, that makes SEO harder & increases the value of some 3rd party tools that provide competitive intelligence information.
- Being able to look up the performance of a section of a site is valuable.
- Tracking how a site has done over time (to identify major ranking shifts & how they align with algorithm updates) is also quite valuable.
- Seeing link spikes & comparing those with penalties is also valuable.
These data sets help offer clues to drive strategy to try to recover from penalties, & how to mimic top performing sites to make a site less likely to get penalized.
The Difference Between These 2 Sites
Our goal with SEO Book is to...
- try to cover important trends & topics deeper than anyone else (while not just parroting Google's view)
- offer a contrary view to lifestyle image / slogan-based SEO lacking in substance or real-world experience
- maintain the strongest community of SEO experts, such that we create a community I enjoy participating in & learning from
Our goal with SEO tools is to...
- create a site that is a solid fit for the beginner to intermediate portions of the market
- review & compare various industry tools & highlight where they have unique features
- offer how to guides on specific tasks that help people across a diverse range of backgrounds & skill levels save time and become more efficient SEOs
- provide introduction overviews of various SEO-related topics
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- Comprehensive competitive data: research performance across organic search, AdWords, Bing ads, video, display ads, and more.
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- Historical data: since 2009, before Panda and Penguin existed, so you can look for historical penalties and other potential ranking issues.
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