Bing Search Spam Fighter: Interesting Reality Check From SEOs

Frédéric Dubut is a Bing spam fighter, he works on search quality and safety at Bing – we quoted him here a few times. He attended the TechSEO Boost search conference yesterday and posted on Twitter “I always find it fascinating to hear the “reality check” from SEO folks.”
What does he mean by that? He said “particularly the small things where the systems and algorithms that we implemented don’t necessarily behave exactly as we think they do.” Two examples he gave, but here are more include (1) implicit local (triggering local intent without “near me”) fails 50% of the time and (2) robots.txt parsing is not 100% consistent across all the tools.
Here are his tweets:

A couple of the “reality checks” (related to the other search engine) that I learned from the experimentation panel:- Implicit local (triggering local intent without “near me”) fails 50% of the time- Robots.txt parsing is not 100% consistent across all the tools#TechSEOBoost
— Frédéric Dubut (@CoperniX) November 29, 2018
I love getting a reality check on what search engine representatives see from the SEO community – so it goes both ways. In fact, listening to search engineers and their concerns around search quality has always given me a perspective outside of the SEO community. So hearing it from both ends is always interesting.
Forum discussion at Twitter.

5 Ways You Can Drive More Organic (Yes, FREE!) Traffic with Chatbots by @virginianussey

Chatbots are making waves largely because chat and text is the preferred communication method for Millennials and Gen Z.
Businesses are using chatbots to provide instant customer service, product recommendation guidance, and for advertising and marketing.
Chatbots have emerged as a top-of-funnel tool for lead generation in both high-performing paid and organic campaigns.
If you’re a social media manager, Facebook Page admin, or digital marketer who wants to zero in on the organic traffic opportunity of chatbots, here are five ways to send more organic traffic to your site with chatbots.
1. Direct Organic Traffic with a Facebook Comment Guard Chatbot
Wouldn’t you love to turn your Facebook engagers into traffic on your site, or better yet, a lead?
With a Facebook post autoresponder chatbot, you can send an automatic response to someone who comments on your Facebook post.
If you’re strategic, you can funnel these engaged commenters as traffic to your website.
Plus, anyone who interacts with your chatbot becomes a Messenger contact that you can send follow-up messaging to.
A comment guard takes what you’re already doing on Facebook and turns it into a conversational interaction — more engaging than a static post in the News Feed.
See how this Facebook post autoresponder sends traffic to a website.

Whether you find a Facebook post is generating a ton of comments and engagements already, or if you dream up a Facebook post geared for engagement – throw a comment guard on it and turn comments into traffic.
2. Drive Organic Traffic with a Chat Blast
Most businesses use email marketing to drive website traffic, that’s a given.
You can design a similar experience with a chatbot with 3x or better open rate in chat compared to email.
Schedule and bulk-send custom, interactive, and engaging chat blast campaigns that send engaged traffic to your site.
Just as email marketing platforms allow for list segmentation, Facebook Messenger marketing platforms like MobileMonkey (disclosure: I work for the company) allows for advanced contact segmentation.
Send specific messages – like a newly published guide, white paper or webinar invitation – with a link to your site to audience segments by defining unique attributes.
Recipients will receive a relevant message according to their interests, preferences, demographics, or any other category you define.
Doing a Facebook Messenger chat blast is free if you follow certain guidelines.
3. Invite Engaged Traffic via Chatbot Drip Campaign
Wouldn’t it be great to set up an automated sequence of messages that send members of your audience relevant links to a funnel on your website?
You can with Facebook Messenger drip campaigns.
With a drip campaign chatbot, you keep leads engaged and active over a period time, an approach that can be ideal for selling complex solutions, training leads, and onboarding.
Here’s an example use case:
Automate four or five messages to send to new contacts, each pointing to a link on your website with more information.
You have the ability to nurture audience segments in different ways, ensuring each group gets the unique form of attention they need to stay engaged and propel them through the pipeline.

What is a drip campaign like in Facebook Messenger? In this example, choose your own adventure – donkeys or unicorns – to see a short drip in Messenger. Don’t worry, no judgment if you go for the donkey.
4. Push Organic Traffic to Your Blog via RSS-Powered Chatbot Blast
When you publish new blog content, an RSS feed automatically updates.
That feed can be integrated into your Facebook Messenger chatbot, which will automatically send it to your subscribers.
RSS-powered chat blasting lets your audience subscribe to your blog and get notifications in Messenger.
Because open and click-through rates are higher in chat than email and other digital channels, an automated blasting feed for new blog content is an obvious win for sending your website traffic.
The Messenger mobile app sends users push notifications.
That means your readers receive a friendly and highly visible alert when new content arrives, increasing the odds that they will see what you have to say.
5. Forward Organic Traffic from Chatbot Link to Messenger
When you’ve integrated chatbots as a communication layer in your marketing mix, you’ll notice a few awesome things:
You can send follow-up messaging to anyone who messages your bot.
You can create automated sequences that qualify leads and activate customers.
You can forward people from your interactions in chat to anywhere you like in your conversion funnel.
So as you’re designing your chatbot funnels, you’ll find you’ll want to link people directly to a strategically designed chatbot experience.
For example, you might want to link people to an engaging chatbot that signs them up for a virtual event,
Or you might want to link people to the chatbot that provides research or a resource.
A Messenger chatbot provides an awesome user experience because it’s dynamic and interactive, personalized and engaging, and always mobile-friendly.
Using a chatbot, you can drop a link to your website where a conversion can be completed, be it a sign-up, subscription, or purchase.
Because you can automate each of the tactics described here, build them once and let your bot do the heavy lifting for you.
More Resources:
Image Credits
All screenshots taken by author, November 2018

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Who Should Win as the U.S. Search Personality of Personalities? [POLL] by @A_Ninofranco

There is so much to like about the SEO community.
As our Executive Editor Danny Goodwin puts it:

“SEO is such a giving community. We share strategies, tactics, tips, tools, data, and so much more on social media and at conferences – as well as in articles, research, and blog posts.”

The community is lucky to have industry thought leaders who contribute to the overall growth of the space by providing valuable insights derived from their own experiences.
Since 2013, several digital marketing celebrities have been awarded Search Personality of the year at the annual U.S. Search Awards – a competition that celebrates the very best in SEO, PPC, digital and content marketing in the U.S.
The Search Personality of the year award recipients include:
2013: Marty Weintraub
2014: Duane Forrester
2015: Larry Kim
2016: Eric Enge
2017: Melissa Fach
2018: Barry Schwartz
If we pitted the winners against each other, who should win as the personality of personalities?
We asked our Twitter community to find out.
Who Should Win as the Search Personality of Personalities?
Here are the results from this #SEJSurveySays poll question.
According to SEJ’s Twitter audience:
42 percent voted Barry Schwartz worthy to be the personality of personalities.
34 percent thought Larry Kim should win the title.
13 percent picked Eric Enge as the rightful winner.
11 percent believed Melissa Fach should be the personality of personalities.

NOTE: Past winners Marty Weintraub of Aimclear and Duane Forrester of Yext weren’t forgotten. Twitter only let us put up to four poll choices so we chose the four most recent winners.
One thing all these great personalities have in common?
Ties to Search Engine Journal.
Eric Enge, General Manager of Perficient Digital (and the founder and CEO of Stone Temple, which was acquired by Perficient in July 2018) wrote a chapter of our Complete SEO Guide: What to Do When Things Go Wrong in SEO.
Melissa Fach is the Social and Community Manager at Pubcon, the blog editor at SEMrush, and works as a consultant with a few select clients. She is also a former managing editor of SEJ from 2011-2013.
Larry Kim is the CEO of Mobile Monkey and founder of WordStream. Nearly 100 posts he wrote have been published on SEJ since 2010.
Barry Schwartz is the CEO of RustyBrick, the founder of the Search Engine Roundtable, and the News Editor at Search Engine Land. What people might not remember is that from 2005-2006 he was a news writer for SEJ.
While Schwartz may be the most recent winner of the U.S. Search Personality winner – and the winner of our poll pitting the four most recent winners against each other – it’s important to remember that everyone mentioned here is a winner.
They’re all awesome at what they do.
All six of these brilliant people have helped countless people in our industry over the years through speaking at conferences, writing for top blogs and publications, and sharing their knowledge and expertise with our community in other ways.
So, here’s a big THANK YOU to all six of you – Marty, Duane, Larry, Eric, Melissa, and Barry – from all of us at Search Engine Journal.
The Leading SEO Experts, Publications & Conferences You Need to Know
Want to learn more about search engine optimization (SEO)?
Have Your Say
Who do you think deserves to be called the “Search Personality of Personalities?” Tag us on social media to let us know.
Be sure to have your say in the next survey – check out #SEJSurveySays on Twitter for future polls and data.
Image Credit
Chart created by Shayne Zalameda

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Google Posts Large AMP Indexing FAQs For SEOs & Webmasters

Dong-Hwi Lee, a Googler, posted in the Google Webmaster Help forums a large FAQs around indexing questions related to AMP. This is a very comprehensive FAQ around the topic and I thought it would be useful to bring more attention to this document to the community.
The questions include:
In general, how long does it take for AMP pages to be indexed and served from Search?
If I launch X number of AMP pages, how long can I expect indexing will take? What factors affect selection? (with and without the assumption that the canonical page is being crawled and indexed)
Is indexing different by page type – i.e. home page vs. product detail page?
If pages are likely to be changed or removed often, are they still good candidates for indexing?
Is there any way to accelerate the pace of indexing (for example, by creating Adwords campaigns)?
What is the impact of AMP on ranking?
Should I be concerned if only a small percentage of my AMP pages have been indexed and are surfacing in Search?
Why do two results appear (AMP and non-AMP) when I search?
Should I tag my AMP pages any differently in this scenario? Desktop site (www), mobile site (m.) and AMP pages (on m.) when AMP points to m. and m. to AMP.
Why is my AMP page not showing up in the top stories carousel?
Is AMP crawling coming off my crawl budget?
So check it out to find all the answers.
Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

Why Search Engine Land Is Not Currently Indexed In Google

I woke up this morning to probably close to a hundred messages across email, social media and other channels that Search Engine Land is not currently in the Google Index. People want to know why.
Update: I do know why now, it was a mistake – Google thought the site was hacked, it was not. See below for what I wrote earlier with a link to more details.
I honestly do not know why. I do not have access to the code base or Google Search Console access. I have no information at this point. I totally suspect it will make for a good story on Search Engine Land when we do get all the details. But as of now, I know as much as everyone else.
I figured it would be easier to post this here for now then respond to every single message I have received about this situation.
There are a lot of rumors about why Search Engine Land is down and so far none of them seem to be real. One was that there was an iframed noindex on an article or a bunch but as John Mueller of Google said, that would result in some pages dropping out of the index slowly, not the whole site all at once:

Wondering if this iframe coud’ve caused @sengineland to get deindexed recently… I don’t see any other obvious reasons? HT to @maxjpeters for noticing it was gone from Google. Any ideas/fyi @dannysullivan pic.twitter.com/UNj0OoZJNy
— Matt Tutt (@MattTutt1) November 30, 2018

I have no comment on the current situation (I’m on a train with my phone :)), but in general, if a site were to add noindex to all its pages, the effect would take place over time, as we recrawl & reprocess the URLs. Some URLs would be fast, many would take longer.
— 🍌 John 🍌 (@JohnMu) November 30, 2018
Same with ScreamingFrog tool, they said the same:

On SEL – The noindex in the rendered source is in an iframe, and GSC URL inspection tools classes it as indexable (from a quick test). Noindex generally works slowly, not that I’ve been checking SEL index status – but this feels more abrupt.
— Screaming Frog (@screamingfrog) November 30, 2018
So what is going on here? I really honestly do not know. I hope it is a simple technical glitch where someone on the tech team pressed the wrong button and is accidentally blocking Google.
Forum discussion at Twitter, Black Hat World and WebmasterWorld.
Update: Turns out this was a Google bug and Google mislabeled the site as being hacked. You can learn more about this at Search Engine Land.

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