June 2020 AWOS

Hi folks! It's time for a Week of SEO.
Happy "I missed the entirety of June because it seemed kind of gauche to be talking about SEO/web marketing when Important World Events were going on, but it turns out they're still going on, and there's a lot here, so" Wednesday, friends. If you can give, I'd definitely recommend giving to your local Mutual Aid Funds and Food Banks. There are a lot of people in need out there.

Anyway; web stuff. There were some updates this month-- they happen every day, but there was, in fact, a big update this month. This newsletter is really long; Here are 3 links I think you should definitely take a look at: 




Should Google not trust links in all blog posts?

Barry Schwartz reported on some kerfuffle in the SEO community with regards to Guest Posting. John Mueller suggested that links from Guest Blogs should always have rel=sponsored or rel=nofollow links attached.

Here's the thing: I think he is definitely saying that.... to SEOs. I think generally, this kind of guidance is because Joh Mu and other Googlers know people who just kinda... have websites aren't hanging on their every word for loopholes in the Webmaster Guidelines. SEOs, however, are looking for an excuse to make something a strategy. There isn't any physical difference between Suzy writing a post for her friend's blog and linking back to her own and an SEO doing a link building campaign... but there's a scale difference, and there's a difference between what is considered "natural" behavior.

(Most folks, even folks with websites, don't really know what a nofollow link is.)

Core Web Vitals

There are a ton of resources on measuring your core web vitals: you can see tools here, best practices here, and a getting started guide here There's also a Web Vitals extension in the Chrome Web Store. 

The History of Search Engines

Carl Hendy wrote a long post about the history of web search engines-- definitely worth a read for SEOs. While you're here, The History of The Web published a post called "What happened to the Webmaster" which is well worth a read.

What GoogleBot is Doing to Shopping Carts… and Why

Roger Montti wrote about what was going on with GoogleBot and shopping carts. Basically merchants who participate in Google Shopping (or Google’s back-end for sellers the Merchant Center and Shopping ads) agree to have their sites crawled, including their shopping cart.

Beginners’ Guide To Writing Good HTML

Good HTML is foundational to Good SEO and Good Accessibility. Bruce Lawson wrote this guide on Future-Proof, Good, HTML. 

How Natural Language Generation Changes the SEO Game

Hamlet Batista wrote a great article about Natural Language Generation, and Python, and it's fantastic.

Introduction to PageRank for SEO

From Polemic Digital, a great article about PageRank. PageRank is a fundamental of SEO that is often misunderstood-- having a good grounding in SEO opens up a ton of mental blocks in how PageRank works. 

How Google Might Rank Image Search Results

Bill Slawski wrote a detailed guide on how Google might look at and rank image search results. 

How to find the internal category Google uses for Google Discover content

This quick, minute long YouTube tutorial from Saijo George, he shows how you can see what category Google has sorted an Article on your site onto. 

Around The Web:

Building the Woke Web: Web Accessibility, Inclusion & Social Justice

Required reading! We do not live single issue lives; this blog talks about the ways that barriers are put up for marginalized communities around the web, from access and accessibility to hostile conditions-- and then some solutions to this. 

The Return of the 90s Web

Do you remember the web in the 90s? I do. Barely. That's where I cut my teeth on weird geocities websites. Max Bock talks about the ways we're seeing fundamentals from the 90s return today. Some of these trends include owning your own website, webrings, server side rendering, and more. Hopefully we'll be seeing some under construction gifs as well. 

The Chromium blog came out with a blog post about the efforts they have taken and are going to take to improve browser compatibility in 2020; reducing the manner in which websites look or behave differently on different web browsers. It's definitely worth a read. 

Is WebP really better than JPEG?

If you've ever had a conversation with me, you know I can't shut up about image optimization. WebP is one of the next gen image formats you may have heard of; Johannes Siipola tested WebP vs. JPEG to see if WebP really was better. While you're here, check out css-trick's guide to responsive images in HTML

Intro To Generative Art

Ali Spittel wrote a really cool introduction to generative art.

An Illustrated Guide to Graph Neural Networks

This guide, by Rishabh Anand, covers the basic mechanism of Graph Neural Networks using diagrams.  If you like that you might also like 9 Key Machine Learning Algorithms Explained in Plain English from the freecodecamp site. 

A Google Sheets regex generator tool

Sam Underwood wrote a Google Sheets regex generator tool and it's super useful, especially if you hate writing Regex like I do, but love using Regex like I do.

Compiler Compiler: A Twitch series about working on a JavaScript engine

Yulia Startsev has started a new stream called Compiler Compiler, which looks at how the JavaScript Specification is implemented. This post involves the incredible line "JavaScript …is a programming language." It sure is. If that wets your appetite for more code streams, check out Cyberbarbie

What JavaScript Developers Should Know About Curl

Valeri Karpov at The Code Barbarian wrote a great post about Curl. I think it can be really valuable even for non developers-- especially how to call HTTP GET requests, making POST and PUT requests, and authentication. You can also read "How and why to learn command line as a front end developer" from the Go Make Things blog.

How Web Accessibility Works

Seguno Alive wrote about how web accessibility and the AOM works. Once you've read this, you can read "How I fixed accessibility on my website and how you can fix yours." 

Uncommon CSS Properties

I'm a sucker for any article about less used properties in HTML/CSS/JS, and this one is great. 

In Analytics:


How To Track Featured Snippet Clicks via Chrome Using Google Tag Manager

Brodie Clark wrote a great post about using GTM to track featured snippets in Analytics. I think this can be a great view when looking at traffic. 

Using the CrUX Dashboard on Data Studio

Rick Viscomi wrote a post about using Chrome User Experience data in Data studio on the web.dev site.

Visualizing The SEO Engagement Trap – How To Use Behavior Flow In Google Analytics To View User Frustration [Case Study]

Glenn Gabe wrote a case study about avoiding user frustration using the user flow section of Google Analytics. 

Just for fun:

Tired of short bitly links? ShadyURL makes your links suspicious and frightening! 



Elevator.js fixes those awkward "scroll to top" moments by adding muzak and a bell and it's really funny. 

Printing a Physical <blink> tag

I'm obsessed with this.

Question of the Week:

What are you doing to tackle diversity problems in your company, audience, industry, speaker lineup? 

Take a look at this video about performative wokeness from T1J. Perhaps send a few dollars to this SEOs Against Police Brutality fundraiser

Oh and I wrote a thing:

Here's a post about Chick Fil A. Here's a post about ads

And you can listen to an interview I did for Dan Shure's podcast here!

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