Feel like you’re being left behind by the search marketing industry with all the talk of semantic search?  Rest assured, you’re not alone – a significant minority of search marketers themselves are ignoring this area of development as they focus on their familiar, traditional areas of benefit (and expertise)!

Needless to say, however, this subject is not going away and if you don’t keep up with subjects as they grow, you could soon find yourself (just like our grandparents with VCRs) staring in wonder as kids run rings around you.

With that in mind, this article couldn’t come at a better time, providing a helpful guide to the basic principles that underpin the shift in how search will analyse and present meaningful data in the future.

Going hand in hand with that primer, Rand Fishkin at Moz has recently given a Whiteboard Friday video on the same subject – running the rule over entities, etc – and the two together should ensure that you can keep up with more complex conversations and ensure your site isn’t left behind in optimising for these algorithmic benchmarks.

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Having looked to the future of search, the next article I’m highlighting is a little bit of a blast from the past – with a comprehensive analysis of the impact of exact match domain names on search rankings.

I think it’s safe to say that the industry consensus has been agreed for some time that SEO has gone way beyond picking a good URL – as such, it’s interesting to have solid data demonstrating the enduring value of keyword orientated domains (along with the branding and broader market value).

The more things change, the more things stay the same?  Well, not quite but it certainly raises solid questions about ensuring you know what your long-term business plan is before you opt for a site URL.

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Continuing the theme of how things have changed in the industry (and chiming well with our earlier references to semantic search), I wanted to give a link to these week’s article from Marcus Tober.

Most well-known for the annual Searchmetrics Rankings Guide, Marcus is a renowned data-hound which explains why, even when looking at the relatively artistic side of search marketing – content development – he still backs up his (very strong) advice with statistical justifications.

A great insight into what works (algorithmically) and when considered in tandem with more holistic articles, it’s fascinating to be reminded how efficiently Google is turning the analysis of textual meaning into a science.

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Lastly, having mentioned negative SEO last week, I’m glad to be able to follow up with a very useful piece from Search Engine Watch on monitoring and fighting potential negative marketing activity.  Along with detailing a number of useful third-party tools to help discover and analyse, it’s very helpful at identifying how to start your efforts – as the conclusion puts it, it never hurts to monitor your presence in search.