SEO Guru Shares Insights for Magazine Publishers
INBOX: What has been the biggest challenge for The New York Times regarding SEO? And how are you meeting that challenge?
SIMMONDS: Many processes in the publishing world have been institutionalized for many, many years. Altering those processes to incorporate SEO best practices can be difficult. We work to meet this challenge by diffusing the negative connotations that the voice of an article will change. Our approach is to educate [editors and producers] on how to reach the audience that is searching for the specific type of content we’re publishing. For example, we know that users search for “NFL” versus “National Football League.” Empowering the editors and producers with these tools and best practices helps people find our content through the major search engines, which is a good user/search experience for everyone involved.
INBOX: How will the increased use of mobile technologies affect SEO strategies?
SIMMONDS: Quite simply, it offers a new medium and entry point into a site. Sites that execute and optimize content will do well, those that don’t, will not.
INBOX: Do you think any search company will ever be able to compete with Google?
SIMMONDS: Google is definitely the strongest player we’ve seen in years. I think there is plenty of room for multiple players in this industry, and I do think others are competing well with Google. You see Yahoo! specializing in social media. Ask and MSN are offering great search services and tools. There is plenty of room in video and rich media to compete. For now though, no one touches Google Web search.
Editors Note: For more tips on SEO practices, read the cover story “Luring the Spiders: SEO secrets from the experts at Google, Yahoo! and more” in the current issue of Publishing Executive magazine (http:www.pubexec.com).