Thanks for the post Chelsea! I think Google is starting to move further away from PageRank but I do agree that a higher amoount of links doesn’t necessarily mean a higher rank. I’ve seen many try to shortcut the system and end up spending weeks undoing these “shortcuts.” I wonder how much weight PageRank still holds today, considering the algorithms Google continues to put out there to provide more relevant search results.
More specifically, who gets to appear on the page and where is based on an advertiser’s Ad Rank, a metric calculated by multiplying two key factors – CPC Bid (the highest amount an advertiser is willing to spend) and Quality Score (a value that takes into account your click-through rate, relevance, and landing page quality, among other factors). In turn, your Quality Score affects your actual cost per click, or CPC.
Basically Google uses a complex mathematical formula called an algorithm to give a score to every website and every search people to do in Google to figure out which website should rank best for what people are looking for. Think of the algorithm like a collection of empty buckets. One bucket gives you a score for the quality of your site, one bucket gives you a score for how many sites link to you, one bucket gives you a score for how people trust you. Your job is to fill up more buckets in the algorithm than any other website. You can affect your search engine ranking by having the highest score in terms of quality of your site, of having the highest score in terms of authority of your website, of having the highest score in terms of the most trusted store for that search that people are looking for. The good thing is that there are hundreds of buckets, and for every single one of these buckets these scores put together in the algorithm to figure out where you rank is an opportunity for you to fill it up and rank better. So optimizing your site for search results really means getting the highest score in as many of these points as you can.

For example, suppose you're a law firm targeting the phrase "divorce attorney" with a broad match ad. Your ad should appear on the results page for the search query "divorce attorney," but it could also show up for the phrases "reasons for divorce," "dui attorney" or "dealing with divorce for children." In these cases, you may be wasting money on irrelevant searches.

Digital marketing is defined by the use of numerous digital tactics and channels to connect with customers where they spend much of their time: online. From the website itself to a business's online branding assets -- digital advertising, email marketing, online brochures, and beyond -- there's a spectrum of tactics that fall under the umbrella of "digital marketing."
Let’s face it. To have your site ranked on Google organically can take a lot of work and involves an in-depth knowledge of how websites are put together. If you are not a web expert, and are looking to have your site ranked on Google to bring new traffic to your site, then perhaps a Google Adwords or Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaign is for you. So, how does PPC work?

PageRank as a visible score has been dying a slow death since around 2010, I’d say. Pulling it from the Google Toolbar makes it official, puts the final nail in the visible PageRank score coffin. The few actually viewing it within Internet Explorer, itself a depreciated browser, aren’t many. The real impact in dropping it from the toolbar means that third parties can no longer find ways to pull those scores automatically.
Ad Text – It’s possible that ad text is the most overlooked component of a PPC campaign. Marketers are under the impression that they can run any kind of “look here” text and people will come flocking to their site. The reality is that it’s best to get a professional copywriter involved when creating ad text. It’s also important to ensure that the ad text is related to the keywords.
The kind of content you create depends on your audience's needs at different stages in the buyer's journey. You should start by creating buyer personas (use these free templates, or try makemypersona.com) to identify what your audience's goals and challenges are in relation to your business. On a basic level, your online content should aim to help them meet these goals, and overcome their challenges.
The Nielsen Global Connected Commerce Survey conducted interviews in 26 countries to observe how consumers are using the Internet to make shopping decisions in stores and online. Online shoppers are increasingly looking to purchase internationally, with over 50% in the study who purchased online in the last six months stating they bought from an overseas retailer.[23]
It is important for a firm to reach out to consumers and create a two-way communication model, as digital marketing allows consumers to give back feed back to the firm on a community based site or straight directly to the firm via email.[24] Firms should seek this long term communication relationship by using multiple forms of channels and using promotional strategies related to their target consumer as well as word-of mouth marketing.[24]
Although the full scope of SEO is far too broad to cover comprehensively here, all you need to know is that SEO focuses primarily on achieving higher rankings from an organic perspective. Businesses may hire an agency or SEO professional to perform their SEO work, but beyond this investment, no money changes hands and all the emphasis is placed on ranking more highly in organic search.
PageRank was once available for the verified site maintainers through the Google Webmaster Tools interface. However, on October 15, 2009, a Google employee confirmed that the company had removed PageRank from its Webmaster Tools section, saying that "We've been telling people for a long time that they shouldn't focus on PageRank so much. Many site owners seem to think it's the most important metric for them to track, which is simply not true."[65] In addition, The PageRank indicator is not available in Google's own Chrome browser.

Digital media is so pervasive that consumers have access to information any time and any place they want it. Gone are the days when the messages people got about your products or services came from you and consisted of only what you wanted them to know. Digital media is an ever-growing source of entertainment, news, shopping and social interaction, and consumers are now exposed not just to what your company says about your brand, but what the media, friends, relatives, peers, etc., are saying as well. And they are more likely to believe them than you. People want brands they can trust, companies that know them, communications that are personalized and relevant, and offers tailored to their needs and preferences.

Search engine result pages are protected from automated access by a range of defensive mechanisms and the terms of service.[10] These result pages are the primary data source for SEO companies, the website placement for competitive keywords became an important field of business and interest. Google has even used Twitter to warn users against this practice[11]
Although the Web page ranked number 3 may have much more useful information than the one ranked number 1, search engine software cannot really tell which is the superior website from a quality perspective. It can only know which ones are popular, and link swaps (you link to me - I link to you) are created to do nothing more than make pages popular.
Generally speaking, “ad position” is influenced by the amount you are willing to pay (max CPC bid) and the relevancy of the ad to the keywords in your ad group (Quality Score). Quality Score is a numeric representation of the relevancy of your ads and keywords assigned independently by both Google and Bing. It is important to note that only Google’s Quality Score impacts ad position currently. Bing’s Quality Score serves only as a guideline to improve your ad/keyword relevancy. We will discuss Quality Score in further detail in Part B.
Once consumers can access this content, they want to engage with something that fits their needs and is sensory and interactive — from the early popularity of web portals to the spread of online video, to the next generation virtual realities. Their digital desires are marked by a thirst for content. The old media adage that “content is king" is correct. There is no question that the desire to engage with content is a key driver of customer behavior.

To put it simply, a SERP is a page full of possible answers that follow a query entered into a search engine. To digital marketers, SERPs are golden real estate opportunities for generating high volume traffic. In order to capitalize on those opportunities, marketers must understand the Google search page layout and how to utilize the appropriate listings to the highest visibility. 
If someone clicks on your PPC listing, they arrive at your website on a page you’ve selected, and you are charged an amount no more than what you bid. So, if you bid $1.50 maximum on the keyword ‘widgets’, and that’s the highest bid, you’ll probably show up first in line. If 100 people click on your PPC listing, then the search engine or PPC service will charge you a maximum of $150.00.
The eigenvalue problem was suggested in 1976 by Gabriel Pinski and Francis Narin, who worked on scientometrics ranking scientific journals,[7] in 1977 by Thomas Saaty in his concept of Analytic Hierarchy Process which weighted alternative choices,[8] and in 1995 by Bradley Love and Steven Sloman as a cognitive model for concepts, the centrality algorithm.[9][10]
Email marketing - Email marketing in comparison to other forms of digital marketing is considered cheap; it is also a way to rapidly communicate a message such as their value proposition to existing or potential customers. Yet this channel of communication may be perceived by recipients to be bothersome and irritating especially to new or potential customers, therefore the success of email marketing is reliant on the language and visual appeal applied. In terms of visual appeal, there are indications that using graphics/visuals that are relevant to the message which is attempting to be sent, yet less visual graphics to be applied with initial emails are more effective in-turn creating a relatively personal feel to the email. In terms of language, the style is the main factor in determining how captivating the email is. Using casual tone invokes a warmer and gentle and inviting feel to the email in comparison to a formal style. For combinations; it's suggested that to maximize effectiveness; using no graphics/visual alongside casual language. In contrast using no visual appeal and a formal language style is seen as the least effective method.[48]

The landing page from ad #2 is shown below. Again, I expected to see left handed golf clubs, and yet again, I was shown a page full of content not directly relevant to my search term. The only reason I would let this slide as a “good” experience is because it presents three major brands (along with a deal) on the landing page, which may convince me to invest a few more clicks to find what I’m looking for.
The results are of two general types, organic search and paid search (i.e., retrieved by the search engine's algorithm) and sponsored (i.e., advertisements). The results are normally ranked by relevance to the query. Each result displayed on the SERP normally includes a title, a link that points to the actual page on the Web and a short description showing where the keywords have matched content within the page for organic results. For sponsored results, the advertiser chooses what to display.
As of 2009, there are only a few large markets where Google is not the leading search engine. In most cases, when Google is not leading in a given market, it is lagging behind a local player. The most notable example markets are China, Japan, South Korea, Russia and the Czech Republic where respectively Baidu, Yahoo! Japan, Naver, Yandex and Seznam are market leaders.
Looking at the count of Impressions will provide you the total number of instances where keywords triggered ads to be shown on a search engine results page (SERP). When a search is performed in Google for the phrase “Hawaiian vacation with kids”, the following advertisers (1-3) each increased their impression count by one (+1) because of the search.

The kind of content you create depends on your audience's needs at different stages in the buyer's journey. You should start by creating buyer personas (use these free templates, or try makemypersona.com) to identify what your audience's goals and challenges are in relation to your business. On a basic level, your online content should aim to help them meet these goals, and overcome their challenges.
The content page in this figure is considered good for several reasons. First, the content itself is unique on the Internet (which makes it worthwhile for search engines to rank well) and covers a specific bit of information in a lot of depth. If a searcher had question about Super Mario World, there is a good chance, that this page would answer their query.
Winning a Related Question might resulted in a small CTR bump. However Related Questions are also useful as a method of finding Featured Snippet keyword opportunities related to your existing keywords. If you find Related Questions on a SERP, try tracking the question as a keyword in itself. Most of the time that keyword will have a Featured Snippet which you can win.
Description meta tags are important because Google might use them as snippets for your pages. Note that we say "might" because Google may choose to use a relevant section of your page's visible text if it does a good job of matching up with a user's query. Adding description meta tags to each of your pages is always a good practice in case Google cannot find a good selection of text to use in the snippet. The Webmaster Central Blog has informative posts on improving snippets with better description meta tags18 and better snippets for your users19. We also have a handy Help Center article on how to create good titles and snippets20.
With content marketing, marketers will create content that is likely to rank well for a specific keyword, giving them a higher position and max exposure in the SERPs. They’ll also attempt to build a backlink profile with websites that have a high domain authority. In other words, marketers will try to get websites that Google trusts to link to their content – which will improve the domain authority (and SERP rankings) of their own website.
Some search engines have also reached out to the SEO industry, and are frequent sponsors and guests at SEO conferences, webchats, and seminars. Major search engines provide information and guidelines to help with website optimization.[18][19] Google has a Sitemaps program to help webmasters learn if Google is having any problems indexing their website and also provides data on Google traffic to the website.[20] Bing Webmaster Tools provides a way for webmasters to submit a sitemap and web feeds, allows users to determine the "crawl rate", and track the web pages index status.
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