How Do You Measure Visitor Engagement?

What’s the most important metric when it comes to determining the health of your site? It’s not really a fair question since no one metric tells the entire story, but for a long time page views have been considered one of the most important metrics. Page views don’t tell the whole story of course. Does someone look at a lot of your pages because they like your content or because they can’t find what they’re looking for? And with the rise of Ajax applications how meaningful is to to measure when your entire application is on one page? Recently there’s been a movement toward time spent as a measure of engagement with your site, though that has it’s share of problems too. So how is one to measure visitor engagement with your site.
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Google’s Supplemental Spin Is BS

Earlier in the year a reader commenting on SEO Book mentioned a Google query that claimed to show all of the pages that were supplemental for a given site. Last week Matt McGhee noticed the query wasn’t working and his post on Friday has set off some debate about whether or not Google should show webmasters which pages are included in the supplemental index. Matt Cutts has chimed in with the idea that he’d essentially like to see all mention of the supplemental index removed so webmasters stop fixating on it. But there’s a good reason for the fixation with the supplemental index. Pages in the supplemental index simply won’t rank as well as if they weren’t supplemental, despite what Matt and Google would like you to believe.
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How Do You Get A Million Links?

A journey of a thousand million miles backlinks begins with a single step link
-Confucius (sort of)

I hope Confucius will forgive my changing his quote around, but if you haven’t heard SEOmoz recently moved past the one million mark for links flowing into the site. Congratulations to Rand and the rest of the Mozzers on their well deserved achievement. Rand posted today on how SEOmoz gained those one million+ links, all in under three years no less, and since I’ve been answering a lot of questions the last week on how to get links I wanted to add a few thoughts of my own.
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Search Friendly vs Search Optimized

Last month Stoney DeGeyter wrote an excellent post about the differences between developing a site to be search engine friendly and one that has been optimized for search engines. Joe Dolson followed that post up with one equally deserving of comment and a little over a week ago Joost de Valk added another post in the chain. Now it’s my turn.
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Do You Really Need Search Traffic?

Jennifer Laycock is starting an interesting experiment where she’s out to prove a business can survive without Google. Actually she’s out to prove that a business can survive without any search traffic at all. In time the search engines will be allowed back in, but the idea is to show that search traffic while useful is not necessary to build a business and drive both traffic and sales. The best part is we’ll all get to find out how it goes and most likely learn a lot along the way.
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