A quick tutorial on the new keyword research features in Scribe v4

Keyword research isn’t everyone’s favorite part of SEO. It can be time-consuming and can seem complex, which is one great reason for using a user-friendly tool like Scribe.

But of course, it’s essential. An effective search strategy means we have to be optimizing consciously … and that means keyword research.

And it’s not just a simple matter of pulling together a list of terms and search volume.

The new keyword suggestion tool in Scribe goes deeper into keywords, so you won’t just find popular content ideas, you’ll also find opportunities to publish online in under-served spaces.

Keyword research for content marketers requires more than just getting a list of terms and search volume.

In the new Keyword Suggestion tool from Scribe, we not only provide a list of related topics, we also provide a graphical representation of both popularity and competition.

Scribe Content Suggestions

As a content marketer, your goal isn’t just to find popular content ideas. You’re also looking for content opportunities that aren’t being pursued by others.

A unique new feature of Scribe Keyword Research is the ability to quickly drill into a term and compare your site’s online presence to sites that are already ranking for the term you are researching.

Scribe Keyword Detail

With Scribe, we analyze the term you are researching and compare the strength of your site to those who are already ranking for the term – providing you with an overall difficulty score.

This difficulty score is derived by comparing your site for the term to sites that already rank — including comparing the amount of content, links, authority, and social media shares.

In addition, Scribe provides you with extended demographic information, including the gender and age of people who search for the term as well as estimated search volumes and average pay-per-click cost.

With Scribe it’s easy to keep a pulse on online conversations for terms you are researching — which helps you craft headline ideas for your content.

Headlines from Twitter and Google+ are integrated into Scribe research, providing you with a real-time view of how people are conversing about your target keyword.

Scribe Google Plus Integration

Want to know the historical search trends for a keyword you are researching? With Scribe v4, we make it easy.

Integrated with Google Insights for Search, content marketers can quickly see historical trending information along with additional search terms and ideas that are gaining more attraction.

Scribe Google Insights for Search Integration

We hope this quick walk-through of the new keyword research functionality has been useful! As always, if you have feedback or concerns, login to myScribe and submit a v4 support ticket on the Help page.

3 Killer New Features are Waiting for You in Scribe 4.0 (Beta)

In case you missed it, last week Brian Clark sent out an email letting you know about the new Scribe for WordPress, version 4.0 (beta).

We are providing you with this beta version so that we can get your feedback before we release the final product.

For more information on how to get this beta version and see some helpful videos on the new features, go to http://scribeseo.com/v4beta.

What’s in the new version; why should you test it out?

We’ve added some powerful features specifically designed to dramatically improve your ability to increase traffic to your site, and to make your content marketing efforts much more effective.

Here’s the scoop:

While the current version of Scribe does a great job of analyzing content, it misses one important aspect – building a high-quality, well-focused site.

You might have the most perfectly optimized page in the world. But if the content of your site overall is out of line with that single page, then your optimized document won’t do well on search engines.

In other words (as we all knew), search engines are looking at our content more holistically. They want to know that you’ve created a quality experience for the reader beyond a single web page.

When we set out to upgrade Scribe, we knew that the key element in content marketing was to create sites focused on specific ideas – and to making sure that each new piece of content added builds up on each other.

So with version 4 of Scribe we set about to build a way to analyze both your content and your site.

So what’s changed in the new version? Well, a lot.

It starts with Keyword Research

Obviously, researching the right keywords is one of the foundations of search optimization.

We’ve reworked the entire keyword research functionality of Scribe to focus on the needs of content marketers, helping you to more easily find the relevant keywords for your goals.

Not only have we improved the types of keyword suggestions, but we also help you compare the popularity of a keyword to the amount of competition for that term. (It’s really a supply and demand question … how many sites out there are trying to rank for the term, and how many searchers are looking for it.)

With our new keyword research you can quickly identify niche terms that are both popular and with low competition – so you can improve your chances of becoming an authority online.

We’ve also included some additional research tools so you can quickly see how people are using a particular term in social media – which helps you craft relevant headlines based on online conversations.

If you want to know even more about a keyword, Scribe Keyword Research lets you drill down to measure the difficulty your site will have to rank for that term.

For content marketers, Scribe provides the information at a glance that will help you quickly research keyword usage, both online and on your site – so that you can be smart about how you’re using your time and energy.

OK, what about content analysis?

Content analysis is at the heart of Scribe. For this version, we built on those core ideas and went one step further – analyzing your content in the context of your site.

Of course we still provide the overall “how to write” features you have always used, but we went a big step further.

The new content analysis contains a feature called the Keyword Graph. We think it’s pretty cool, and we think you will, too.

This graph visually shows you not only the keywords that are in your document, it also shows you how well those keywords align to your site.

With the Keyword Graph, you can quickly visualize how well your content and your overall site are aligned. That kind of alignment leads to the editorial focus that search engines are looking for in high-quality content. (And if you’re not in alignment yet, the graph shows you what to focus on to improve that.)

We also introduced a new Site Score – a numeric value that scores the alignment of your document to your site.

Just because a piece of content is optimized does not mean it will fit with your site. As Scribe co-founder Sean Jackson always likes to say, no matter how much domain authority Copyblogger has, it’s never going to rank for the word pizza– because “pizza” isn’t what the site is about.

What link research is … and isn’t

Finally, we’ve also improved Link Research for you — though to tell you the truth, we’re not crazy about this term and will probably change it on final release to reflect what it truly is.

And what is that?

Think of the new Link Research tool as an online contact database for your content marketing work.

Anyone who’s focused on creating quality content will tell you that it’s vital to create connections with other high-quality content publishers. 

That doesn’t mean you try to spam, pester, or annoy them. It’s about creating strong networking relationships based on your mutual commitment to your topic.

With Scribe, we help you find those people – whether they’re bloggers or on social media networking sites like Google+ or Twitter.

So what do you think?

Are you ready to try out the improved keyword research, content analysis and link research tools? We think you’ll agree that they represent a real advance in what Scribe can do for your content.

If so, simply log into https://my.scribeseo.com and follow the instructions at the bottom of the screen.

Just keep in mind, this new version is in beta — so handle with care, and make sure you check out the instructions at http://scribeseo.com/v4beta for instructions on how to set it up.

P.S. One last point, and this is important – we want your feedback!

The new version of Scribe is a dramatic departure from every other tool available. Before we upgrade everyone, we want to give you the chance to let us know how it’s working for you. Whether your feedback is positive or you’ve found some areas we can improve, we would love to hear about it.

Should You Be Worried About the Penguin Update?

Welcome to the launch of our new Scribe newsletter! We’ve created it to answer your most pressing questions about the latest in SEO. Straightforward, ethical SEO advice — in language that real humans speak. :) Enjoy!

You probably know about Google’s “Panda” update last year, which created a major shift in which sites ranked well on Google’s search results pages and which didn’t.

Now there’s a new update called “Penguin” (what is it with the cute animal names?) that has the internet buzzing again.

So is this something you should be worried about, or need to re-optimize your content for?

Today we’re going to talk about why you should not fear the Penguin — and why it’s probably actually a good thing for your site.

Penguin isn’t as new as you might think

For the most part, Penguin is simply automating work that the Google search quality team was already doing manually.

Were you doing something tricky to cloak your keywords, or participating in dodgy link exchanges? Before, Google had a quiet army of employees out scouring the web to look for spammy practices like this.

Many SEO researchers actually thought this work was automated already, because the Google team was so diligent. (They only looked like a robot army …)

Now Google’s algorithms have at least partly caught up with their manual work. Which means they’re just getting a little better at catching what was already “against the rules.”

What is “overoptimization”?

One of the specific targets of Penguin is what’s called “overoptimization.”

That means search optimization that’s a little too perfect. When 99% of the links to you are using your preferred keyword term as anchor text, for example.

The penalty also applies to what’s called keyword stuffing. You’ve probably noticed that Scribe will let you know if you’ve used your keyword phrase too many times in your content. That’s because “stuffing” your keyword too many times into your content is actually probably more harmful than slightly underusing your term.

(Of course, one of the functions of Scribe is to get you to that Goldilocks “Just Right” level.)

It’s still possible for you to “stuff” keywords that are related to your term. So if your keyword is contract attorney, you might squash in dozens of references in to contract law, contract lawyer, negotiate contracts, etc.

There’s a very simple test to see if you’ve overdone this:

Read your content out loud and see if it will make sense to a human reader.

If it’s useful and “sounds right” to a person, it’s unlikely to trigger any red flags with the search engines, today or tomorrow.

Why you should love the Penguin

Updates like Panda and Penguin exist to weed out the bad actors who are using scripts and other practices to make poor-quality content rank better than it should.

That means they’re getting rid of the content that ranks purely because it was optimized by a clever SEO — content that isn’t actually useful to human readers.

And what does that make room for?

It makes room for your content. Written to be useful and shareable for real people in the real world, not robots or scripts.

Attracting natural links from real web sites.

Serving a real purpose for readers by educating them, informing them, and keeping their attention with good writing.

Search engine updates will tend to clear out the clutter and allow your content to find the audience it deserves. Your best defense against Google or Bing/Yahoo updates is to write excellent content, then promote it ethically and without too many automated shortcuts.

If you write well, you will rank well. And no Google update has ever altered that.

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