5 Must-Have Spreadsheets For Online Marketing Professionals

I_love_spreadsheets_hatAs an online marketing consultant and trainer for the past 15 years, I have used a LOT of online tools to help me do my job.

I’ve seen time-saving tools come and go in crazy peaks and troughs. I’ve also seen a few that have ridden the waves of consumer fascination to become permanent fixtures in the online marketer’s toolbox.

Below are 5 spreadsheet-based tools that I use myself or recommend on a regular basis:

1) Distilled’s MS Excel for SEOs – This Excel-based workbook is like a detailed instruction manual for SEOs on how to manipulate bulky data into logical form using Microsoft Excel. If you are an Excel wizard, you’ll love this tool. If not, you’ll probably need a week to wrap your head around the analysis, but it will be worth it – I promise.

2) HubSpot’s Blog Editorial Calendar Template – If you are a content curator or social media marketer, this template will save your life. It simplifies calendar-based content allocation and helps you prioritize content deadlines and build an annual strategy to meet multiple marketing campaign objectives.

3) Shimon Sandler’s PPC Campaign Kick-Off Template – this Excel template is quite a few years old now, but I still use it as a starting point when kicking off a new AdWords or Bing Ads campaign for a client. It helps you and your client to focus on the big picture objectives and build a unique campaign to suit specific requirements rather than implementing a cookie-cutter PPC campaign that needs tweaking to fit.

4) Google SEO Rank Checker Spreadsheet – a recent discovery, this customizable Google Docs template is all kinds of awesome. It includes a clever integration of ImportXML that allows you to collect at-a-glance keyword rankings on Google in real time.

5) Outspoken Media’s Link Building Spreadsheet – another Google Drive shared doc, this is a customizable template consisting of a gigantic list of link building strategies collated by Rhea Drysdale and her team at Outspoken Media.

Sick of paying others to SEO your site? Download my Free SEO Lesson. No catch!

Spread the joy!

Search Industry Job of the Week – Creative Editor – Paid SEM Media

Job Title: Creative Editor – Paid SEM Media
Job Reference: Unknown
Position Type: full time
Name of employer: The Search Agency
Location: Los Angeles
Date Posted: 31 October 2013
Position description:

The SEM Creative Editor will be a company leader in creating, testing, and optimizing keywords and messaging for top-tier clients with the goal of maximizing reach, awareness, and new customer acquisition. They will be responsible for building organized account structures for top companies to ensure relevant ad copy appears for all available SERP queries. The Creative Editor is responsible for writing, testing, and reporting on all new SEM initiatives and taking charge of keyword development, organization, and analysis as it relates to the structure for presenting clients’ ads online.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Work closely with Account Managers, web experts, etc. to create unique and optimized search and display campaigns.
  • Develop and organize keywords into a strategic campaign structure that puts client ads in front of highly relevant online searchers.
  • Work creatively and analytically to change underperforming SEM initiatives by addressing issues with landing page relevance, quality score, and account structure.
  • Actively participate in meetings, training, and create tools to help optimize client SEM campaigns.
  • Ability to act quickly and proactively for client success in a deadline-driven environment.


The successfull candidate must have:

  • Recent SEM experience in an active online marketing environment.
  • Familiarity with AdWords Editor and UI as well as Bing UI and desktop tool.
  • Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Word and Excel as it relates to SEM account builds and optimization.
  • Knowledge of Enhanced Campaigns.
  • Great attention to detail and organization.
  • Intuitive/creative thinker.
  • Outstanding computer and online search skills.
  • Ability to function independently and as part of a team.
  • Adaptability to a changing environment quickly and easily.
  • Manage multiple assignments and prioritize work while meeting deadlines.
  • Resolve complex editorial challenges in a professional and timely manner.
  • Fun, smart, energetic people will move to the top of the candidate list.

Desired Skill Include:

  • Comfortable participating in meetings/trainings to improve account performance across multiple clients and services teams.
  • Excel template and tool creation to improve account structure and performance.
  • Excellent knowledge of third party industry tools used for tracking and reporting on key client metrics.
  • Experience with the Google DoubleClick management platform.


Market competitive salary
Equity opportunities

To Apply please send your resume and salary history to hr(at)thesearchagency(dot)com with “SEM Editor” in the subject line. Please no telephone calls or faxes. The Search Agency, Inc. is a EOE.

Salary range: Unknown
Closing date: Unknown
More info from: http://www.thesearchagency.com/join/careers.html
Contact: Send resumes via online form to: hr(at)thesearchagency(dot)com

For more search industry jobs, or to post a vacancy, visit Search Engine College Jobs Board.

Spread the joy!

Students in 60 Countries Taught by Search Engine College

SEC-smiley-150x178Staff at Search Engine College did their own version of the Harlem Shake this week to celebrate reaching students in 60 countries worldwide.

The 60 country milestone was reached when a new student from Columbia took up our $99 subscription this week.

Since its inception in 2004, Search Engine College has set new industry standards for online training in the field of Search Engine Marketing and we are very proud to have produced over 1,500 happy graduates.

Here’s a list of countries / regions where our students to date are located :

England (UK)
South Africa
Sri Lanka
West Africa
New Zealand
Russian Federation
Hong Kong (China)
Czech Republic
Trinidad and Tobago
United Arab Emirates
Dominican Republic
The Netherlands
Costa Rica
Cayman Islands (UK)
Syrian Arab Republic (Syria)

I wonder which country will be next?


Like to learn SEO? Download a free SEO lesson. No catch!

Spread the joy!

Google Targets Article Marketing, Guest Blogging & Press Releases in Link Scheme Definition Update

article-marketing-newIf you don’t pay regular attention to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, you might have overlooked it, but last month, Google made a significant change to their definition of link schemes.

The revised link scheme wording now cites the following as violating Google’s guidelines:

  •     Large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor text links.
  •     Advertorials or native advertising where payment is received for articles that include links that pass PageRank.
  •     Links with optimized anchor text in articles or press releases distributed on other sites.

Google also removed these examples from the link scheme guidelines:

  •     Linking to web spammers or unrelated sites with the intent to manipulate PageRank.
  •     Links that are inserted into articles with little coherence.

The changes are important in SEO circles, because article marketing, guest blog posts, advertorials and press release syndication are often key components of holistic SEO campaigns. Note in particular that “links with optimized anchor text” are mentioned specifically for the first time. Until fairly recently, the use of anchor text was considered a standard component of effective article writing and any on-page optimization.

With these changes, article syndication and press release optimization – unless implemented extremely carefully – may end up having a negative SEO impact on the very web sites they were intended to help.

In the wake of the changes, we took our Search Engine College Article Marketing course offline temporarily to check lesson content against the new guidelines and re-write any sections that may have been ambiguous.

If your SEO strategy uses any of these initiatives, I suggest taking a very close look at the revised Google Webmaster Guidelines and ensuring your implementation adheres to the revised policy.


Struggling with optimizing your web site? Download your Free SEO Lesson.

Spread the joy!

Q and A: Why hasn’t Google indexed our 301 redirected site?

QuestionHi Kalena,

I have been asking around forums with no luck and you were suggested. I have a site which is 4 years old. One year ago we changed our url and management system and did a 301 redirect on all urls. The problem is one year on and Google is still seeing the original page and title and not recognizing the new work and page title, Any ideas?

Thanks so very much,


Hi Steve

You don’t provide your site URLs, so it’s going to be a tricky one to answer. It’s very unusual for Google not to recognize the 301s after such a long time. I have a couple of questions:

1) Have you moved from a free hosted site?

2) Is the old site still live?

If you moved your site from a free hosted site, you may not have had full control over the redirection or the 301s may not have been implemented correctly. If you no longer have control over the old site, or you only have access to some pages (through a CMS or similar), you could try using rel=canonical instead of a 301 redirect as recommended by Matt Cutts of Google in his video below:

If your old site is still live in some form, you should try to remove any remaining pages to ensure that Googlebot can no longer index the old site. If Google can still index some original page content, it may impact their ability to obey the 301 redirects. The ideal scenario is to maintain ownership of the old domain until your new site stabilizes, but this may not always be possible.

3) Did you redirect the old pages to their corresponding new pages on the new site?

You should always redirect on a page to page basis, rather than just using a top level 301 to redirect all old pages to a new domain.

4) How many redirect hops did you use for individual pages?

While there is no limit to the total number of 301 redirects you can use, there is a limit to the number of *hops* or the number of redirect levels you can use for a single page. 1 or 2 hops might be ok, but if you have a page that has been redirected 3, 4 or 5 times (a chain of 301s), Googlebot probably won’t follow them all.

In his video for Google Webmaster Tools, Matt Cutts explains how to use 301 redirects correctly:

5) Is your old XML sitemap still being indexed? Did you create a XML sitemap for the new site and upload it to Webmaster Tools?

One of the first things you should do when migrating sites is to create an XML sitemap listing all the new pages and get that sitemap uploaded to Google and Bing Webmaster Tools. Make sure you remove any outdated sitemaps from your Webmaster Tools account/s.

Aidan Beanland of Yahoo Australia recently gave a fantastic, detailed presentation about migrating a large site using 301 redirects. This might help you.

It’s hard for me to pinpoint what went wrong for you Steve, but the points above and Aidan’s checklist should help narrow it down. Also refer to Google Webmaster Tools for more 301 redirect advice.

Let us know how you get on and best of luck.


Not sure where to start with your SEO? Download your Free SEO Lesson. No catch!


Spread the joy!