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7 SEO Processes That Get Easier with Increased PageRank/Domain Authority - Whiteboard Friday
Posted by Cyrus-ShepardA rising tide lifts all ships — and it's similar story with increased site authority. What factors are affected as you improve PageRank or Domain Authority, and how? In today's Whiteboard Friday, Cyrus details seven SEO processes that are made easier by a strong investment in link building and growing your authority.

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Video Transcription
Howdy, Moz fans. Welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. I'm Cyrus Shepard. Quick Whiteboard this week. I want to talk about links.
We know in SEO we love links. Everybody wants links. But why? What do links do for you? They do a surprising amount for you that we sometimes don't realize. So the title of today's Whiteboard, "7 SEO Processes That Get Easier with Increased PageRank and Domain Authority." So why did we choose PageRank and Domain Authority?
Well, these are both algorithms that measure link power, both the number of links and the quantity of links. PageRank being Google's algorithm to rank web pages based on popularity and importance. Domain Authority, which Google doesn't use, just to be clear, Domain Authority being a Moz algorithm that measures both link quantity and quality.
For our purposes, we can basically use them in the same conversation. We're talking about the power of your links. 
1. Ranking ability

The first thing that everybody knows about is links help you rank. They help you rank in many, many ways. You can get higher rankings. You can attack more keywords, but most importantly, you can attack more competitive keywords.
A good thing I like to do is, when I'm trying to see if I can rank for a keyword, simply Google it, check the Page Authority, which is a very similar metric, of all the top ranking pages, see what your Page Authority is for your top ranking keywords, and you can kind of have a pretty good idea if you have an ability to rank for that keyword. 
2. Crawl budget

But then we get into the nitty-gritty, the other benefits of having that link equity, one of the most important being crawl budget.
When you have more link equity, Google will crawl more of your pages. If you only have a handful of links and a million pages on your website, it's going to be very difficult to get Google to crawl and index all those million pages. If you're eBay or...
What Are the Best Site Audit and Crawler Tools?

Technical SEO optimization is one of the most important aspects of organic search – after all, if your site isn’t functioning properly, users will bounce and return to the SERP, and search engines will have a difficult time crawling and indexing the content.
Position Zero Is Dead; Long Live Position Zero
Posted by Dr-PeteIn 2014, Google introduced the featured snippet, a promoted organic ranking that we affectionately (some days were more affectionate than others) referred to as "position zero" or "ranking #0." One of the benefits to being in position zero was that you got to double-dip, with your organic listing appearing in both the featured snippet and page-1 results (usually in the top 3–4). On January 23, Google announced a significant change (which rolled out globally on January 22) ...

"Declutters" sounds innocuous, but the impact to how we think about featured snippets and organic rankings is significant. So, let's dig deep into some examples and the implications for SEO.
What does this mean for Moz?
First, a product announcement. In the past, we treated Featured Snippets as stand-alone SERP features — they were identified in our "SERP Features" report but were not treated as organic due to the second listing. As of Saturday, January 25 (shout-out to many of our team for putting in a long weekend), we began rolling out data that treats the featured snippet as position #1. SERPs with featured snippets will continue to be tagged in SERP Features reporting, and we're working on ways to surface more data.
Here's a partial screenshot of our "SERP Features" report from one of my own experiments ...

At a glance, you can see which keywords displayed a featured snippet (the scissor icon), owned that featured snippet (highlighted in blue), as well as your organic ranking for those keywords. We're working on bringing more of this data into the Rankings report in the near future.
If you're a Moz Pro customer and would like to see this in action, you can jump directly to your SERP Features report using the button below (please let us know what you think about the update):
Check Your SERP Features
This change brings our data in line with Google's view that a featured snippet is a promoted organic result and also better aligns us with Google Search Console data. Hopefully, it also helps provide customers with more context about their featured snippets as organic entities.
How does Google count to 10?
Let's take a deeper look at the before and after of this change. Here are the desktop organic results (left-column only) from a search for "LCD vs LED" on January 21st ...

Pardon some big images, but I promise there's method to my...
Large Scale Study: How Data From Popular Keyword Research Tools Compare
We recently analyzed 10 of the most popular keyword research tools in the SEO industry.
Our goal?
To compare the accuracy and breadth of the data found within each tool.
Specifically, we analyzed monthly search volume, keyword difficulty, CPC estimates and search suggestions across popular SEO tools, including:

Google Keyword Planner
Moz Pro

To our knowledge this is the first large-scale comparison of the data provided by various keyword research tools.
And now it’s time to share what we discovered.
Summary of Our Key Findings:
1. Ahrefs and SEMrush generate the highest number of keyword suggestions, followed by Ubersuggest, Sistrix, and SECockpit.
2. The Google Keyword Planner provides 67.9% fewer keyword suggestions than the average output from other major paid SEO tools. However, KWFinder and KWTool both produce similar amounts of keyword suggestions compared to GKP.
3. and Sistrix tend to provide higher than average monthly search volume estimates. Sistrix’s search volume estimates are 233% higher than the median, while is 47% above the median. Moz and Ahrefs skew towards slightly lower search volume estimates. Ahrefs’s search volumes are 37% less than the median while Moz Pro’s search volume estimates are 33% below the tool-wide median.
4. When analyzing search volume data for popular search terms (>10k searches/month) Sistrix has significantly higher monthly search volume estimates vs. the Google Keyword Planner.
5. All the SEO tools in our analysis had a significant negative correlation between search volume and keyword length.
6. Certain tools tend to outperform others in terms of keyword suggestions in specific industries. For example, while they generally produce fewer suggestions than SEMrush and Ahrefs, Moz and Google Keyword Planner tend to generate a relatively high number of suggestions in the web hosting niche. And Ubersuggest is particularly good at finding keyword ideas in the marketing, travel, and diet niches.
7. We found large variations for keyword difficulty scores between tools. Our data discovered that SEMrush’s keyword difficulty scores are 110% above the median. SECockpit estimates keyword difficulty 82% below the median.
8. The median CPC across all of the terms that we analyzed was $1.68. SECockpit ($2.20) and...
Pay Attention to These SEO Trends in 2020 and Beyond
Posted by Suganthan-MohanadasanWithout a doubt, it is our job as SEOs to keep an eye on the future and anticipate what Google is planning, testing, or looking to drop on our doorsteps. Over the past 12 months alone, we have seen several changes in Google Search — each impacting how we plan, implement, and report on campaigns.
In this article, I will take a look at what is in store for SEO in 2020 and how these factors will change the way we formulate strategies throughout the next year and beyond.
Artificial intelligence will continue to evolve
Over the past half-decade, artificial intelligence has become a pioneering force in the evolution of SEO.
In 2015, for example, we were introduced to RankBrain -- the machine-based search algorithm that helps Google push more relevant results to users. Although RankBrain is coming up on its fifth birthday, we are only now catching early glimpses into how artificial intelligence will dominate SEO in the coming years.
The most recent step in this progression of artificial learning is, of course, the introduction of Bidirectional Transformers for Language Understanding (BERT), which Google announced at the end of October. For those who missed it, BERT is Google’s neural network-based technique for natural language processing, and it’s important because it deals with the very fundamentals of how people search. Google itself says that the algorithm represents “the biggest leap forward in the past five years, and one of the biggest leaps forward in the history of Search.”
Affecting one in ten searches, BERT gives Google a better understanding of how language is used and helps it comprehend the context of individual words within searches. The important thing to know about BERT (and also RankBrain), is the fact that you cannot optimize for it.
There's nothing to optimize for with BERT, nor anything for anyone to be rethinking. The fundamentals of us seeking to reward great content remain unchanged.— Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) October 28, 2019

But what does this mean for SEOs?
BERT is just one signal of how Google understands language, but it is one of the most important in the search engine’s arsenal. This means that now more than ever, webmasters and SEOs alike must focus their efforts on creating the most useful, natural, and highest-quality content. Quite simply, as Danny Sullivan says, “write content for users.”...
SEO for 2020 - Whiteboard Friday
Posted by BritneyMullerIt's a brand-new decade, rich with all the promise of a fresh start and new beginnings. But does that mean you should be doing anything different with regards to your SEO?
In this Whiteboard Friday, our Senior SEO Scientist Britney Muller offers a seventeen-point checklist of things you ought to keep in mind for executing on modern, effective SEO. You'll encounter both old favorites (optimizing title tags, anyone?) and cutting-edge ideas to power your search strategy from this year on into the future.

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Video Transcription
Hey, Moz fans. Welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. Today we are talking about SEO in 2020. What does that look like? How have things changed?
Do we need to be optimizing for favicons and BERT? We definitely don't. But here are some of the things that I feel we should be keeping an eye on. 
☑ Cover your bases with foundational SEOTitles, metas, headers, alt text, site speed, robots.txt, site maps, UX, CRO, Analytics, etc.
To cover your bases with foundational SEO will continue to be incredibly important in 2020, basic things like title tags, meta descriptions, alt, all of the basic SEO 101 things.
There have been some conversations in the industry lately about alt text and things of that nature. When Google is getting so good at figuring out and knowing what's in an image, why would we necessarily need to continue providing alt text?
But you have to remember we need to continue to make the web an accessible place, and so for accessibility purposes we should absolutely continue to do those things. But I do highly suggest you check out Google's Visual API and play around with that to see how good they've actually gotten. It's pretty cool.
☑ Schema markup
FAQ, Breadcrumbs, News, Business Info, etc.Schema markup will continue to be really important, FAQ schema, breadcrumbs, business info. The News schema that now is occurring in voice results is really interesting. I think we will see this space continue to grow, and you can definitely leverage those different markup types for your website. 
☑ Research what matters for your industry!
Just to keep in mind, there's going to be a lot of articles and research and information coming at you about where things are going, what you should do...
SEO Metrics: Why to Trust Weighted Average Rank Over Average Rank

With organic search, SEOs have many different metrics they can report on to share their progress with their team and executives. Two of those metrics that are frequently used to evaluate content performance are average rank and weighted average rank.
How to Find SEO Insights From Log File Analysis

Google’s web spider, Googlebot, is constantly crawling web pages and adding them to Google’s index. When it crawls your site, it registers quite a bit of information about how your site is working.
Google's January 2020 Core Update: Has the Dust Settled?
Posted by Dr-PeteOn January 13th, MozCast measured significant algorithm flux lasting about three days (the dotted line shows the 30-day average prior to the 13th, which is consistent with historical averages) ...

That same day, Google announced the release of a core update dubbed the January 2020 Core Update (in line with their recent naming conventions) ...

On January 16th, Google announced the update was "mostly done," aligning fairly well with the measured temperatures in the graph above. Temperatures settled down after the three-day spike ...

It appears that the dust has mostly settled on the January 2020 Core Update. Interpreting core updates can be challenging, but are there any takeaways we can gather from the data?
How does it compare to other updates?
How did the January 2020 Core Update stack up against recent core updates? The chart below shows the previous four named core updates, back to August 2018 (AKA "Medic") ...

While the January 2020 update wasn't on par with "Medic," it tracks closely to the previous three updates. Note that all of these updates are well above the MozCast average. While not all named updates are measurable, all of the recent core updates have generated substantial ranking flux.
Which verticals were hit hardest?
MozCast is split into 20 verticals, matching Google AdWords categories. It can be tough to interpret single-day movement across categories, since they naturally vary, but here's the data for the range of the update (January 14–16) for the seven categories that topped 100°F on January 14 ...

Health tops the list, consistent with anecdotal evidence from previous core updates. One consistent finding, broadly speaking, is that sites impacted by one core update seem more likely to be impacted by subsequent core updates.
Who won and who lost this time?
Winners/losers analyses can be dangerous, for a few reasons. First, they depend on your particular data set. Second, humans have a knack for seeing patterns that aren't there. It's easy to take a couple of data points and over-generalize. Third, there are many ways to measure changes over time.
We can't entirely fix the first problem — that's the nature of data analysis. For the second problem, we have to trust you, the reader. We can partially address the third problem by making sure we're looking at changes both in absolute and relative terms....

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