Search Engine Academy vs Bruce Clay – SEO Training Market in the US
What happened a year ago in the United States in California?
In my posts I refer a lot to the Polish SEO reality compared with the foreign markets. This is not an empty prediction and comparison of some abstract things for me. I decided a long time ago that in order to implement high standards in my company, I need to take example from the best. So I decided to go for a month to California, where I had a chance to look at how it all works there. The training lasted for five days, so about 40 hours, the rest of the time I spent exploring the USA (it was worth it ;-)). It was a year ago. I didn’t have a blog back then and I didn’t write down my observations at the moment. To tell you the truth I didn’t wish to share my knowledge either, because such a trip costs several thousand zlotys. If I had to invest in myself, this knowledge should remain only for me. Today, my attitude has changed a bit and I can catch up with a few things, because there’s a chance.
Bruce Clay – a year ago I benefited from the training with this guru of SEO optimization in the US and I was conquering the western coast of the United States. That year many changes in Google Trends and the whole internet marketing happened. That’s why now I have come a full circle and l am conquering the east coast, Florida. I opted for the Search Engine Academy to be in touch with the market on the other side of the United States.
Bruce Clay – Seo Training
As I have already mentioned Bruce Clay, I would like to say a few more words about him. There is a whole company and people who are great specialists – SEO practitioners on a global scale behind this name. Probably a more suitable word is entrepreneurship, because how to speak of a company which has its offices on every continent? Bruce Clay is also a speaker at many major conferences. In addition, he created his own SEO optimization tools. His clients are really important players, including Facebook, Booking, NEC and others.
Anyway, Bruce Clay is a really cool guy – very professional and greatly involved in what he says and does. Although he has his age and a huge company, he’s not losing it. He still trains people in the US and continues to develop. If anyone had any questions, I can tell you what I think of SEO Training led by him and Mindy Weinstein, because I’ve attended it.
This training gave me a lot – I use the knowledge about building SEO strategy and not only all the time, so it was worth it. But it was a year ago, in the meantime I attended several other lectures, courses and trainings. All this to reach perfection doing services for customers. As in that time my round birthday anniversary (the 30th) was approaching, I decided to make myself a great gift (remember, gifts from yourself for yourself are always the best;-)) and join the Tampa SEO Training Academy. And I’m going to tell you something about it today.
Search Engine Academy – what should you know about it?
Search Engine Academy was established in 1999 by John Alexander and Robin Nobles. They have been on the market for 15 years, so you can’t say they lack knowledge of the world of SEO or their actions aren’t effective – in the end the company has been working for such a long time and it is doing very well. They are not limited to Florida but act globally. Similarly to Bruce Clay, they have their offices on a few continents and they bring together the best practitioners.
It is not difficult to guess what they specialize in – of course in Internet Marketing and various SEO activities which are supposed to attract customers to the site and, more importantly, make the site bring some income. The purpose of the Search Engine Academy is to provide all the necessary knowledge to the trainees. And don’t think that you will pay for the course and the diploma is already in your pocket. Oh no, you still have to show up on the final test and acquire over 76% of the points ? And what’s more funny, it’s not so easy to understand the questions, because the whole test was made by an American in American which had little to do with English that I know ?
Generally, you can get two certificates on the training and in order to get a Master SEO title, you need to pass the basic and advanced levels. 40 hours of training in five days. It starts from total scratch which familiarizes with the subject and during which you make sure that you know what SEO is all about. This level lasts two days and there is absolutely everything that a person associated with the industry should know. On the third day we start a more advanced level – we have both semantic search, video SEO, local SEO, Google + and a few other things. What is important – something the Americans consider basic but doesn’t really translate into Polish conditions, because in the US they have a more advanced Google functionality.
Anyway, one full day of training is dedicated to Google, so called Google Day, during which they discuss all the possible issues related to the search engine – from the user privacy analysis to personalization of results. On the last day we get, among others, Tips for Professional SEOs, during which it is described how to support the client, how to sell SEO, how to implement our strategies, how to report and generally how to work with an American client. After all of that we write the test which, as mentioned, is not so simple.
It is worth highlighting that the trainers working in this company are not the theorists-idealists who will say a few sentences from the books. All of them are practitioners who have some achievements in this industry, so it is not so easy to surprise them with a question. What’s more, they are the best practitioners who had to confirm their skills with a special license – you can’t complain about the level of the prepared trainings. The company has a total of 14 locations with the majority of them in the US, but also in Australia, Singapore, Dubai, Canada and Croatia. In each place they implement the same programs/trainings, because their version is approved by the Search Engine Academy. Personally, I really wanted to pass it in the US – I am fascinated with that market and in the end Google was born there ?
Tampa SEO Training Academy – a little information
Tampa SEO Training Academy is one of the trainings offered by the Search Engine Academy. Everything took place in the Cypress Center One in Tampa (Florida). The training was conducted by the branch of the company, in which Microsoft certification classes are held.
The whole training was led by Steve Scott – a regional SEO from Florida, a New Yorker from origin, with 16 years of experience in Internet Marketing. He conducted an intensive SEO course, whose program was scheduled for five days.
Among the topics discussed, we can distinguish:
- Keyword Research,
- Link Building techniques ,
- Google tools,
- blogging strategies,
- writing good content for Semantic Search,
- and many, many others.
It is marked in the training offer that they prefer small groups, because this way they can apply a more personalized approach, more adapted to the level of participants. It works, because after Scott found out we were mainly working with health & beauty, he tried to show most of the examples from the United States precisely in this category. It was a great solution, because I got a lot of implementation ideas and solutions which I can apply for my clients.
Moreover, they ensure in the training offer that everything is shown on real examples, which are used to analyze the best and most current solutions. And they invite you to show your own site, which is checked by SEO experts and the rest of the group – of course, giving advice on what can be improved – a trick encouraging participation ?
What can I say about the training?
Even though I truly wish to, I can’t say too much. All because of the NDA which I had to sign before the start of the Search Engine Academy classes. I can’t say most of the things, because I don’t want to end up back at court in Miami – a ticket for speeding last year is fairly enough for me;-).
Actually, I will try to give a general summary of how they train seos overseas and what SEO looks like there – I mean the trainings conducted by Bruce Clay and Steve Scott.
- in both cases the training was on a high professional level,
- in both cases, as it is in the US, a great deal of time was devoted to landing page optimization (meta data, headers, indexing, internal linking)
due to the change of Google Search Engine to Hummingbird, which took place in September 2013, a lot of time at this year’s training was devoted to description of this new semantic Google engine. The Hummingbird is a faster and more accurate search engine algorithm. It tries to understand the users’ queries better and answer them quite precisely. It also generates “zero-clic” results, eg. when answering the query about the weather, etc.
- in both cases a lot was said about local results and domination strategies for local businesses,
content … the most was about it ? I was really interested in semantic search which is writing content in the proper context. Steve showed us how Google probably reads the intentions of the query and what is taken into account when building search results. It was nice to get to know the phrases which direct Google to the context of the words in the content. Anyway, you can find opinions in the Searchmetrics presentations from Germany that “Context is King“, not “Content is King“,
- there was not much about link building in both cases… all in all manual outreach and content marketing,
- this year in Tampa Steve presented the great changes in ranking factors after the last “Pigeon” update. Local Seo is quite popular here.
- personalization of results … it crashed me completely, their Google is becoming more and more personalized to the user, I’d fear using Gmail ?
- the role of social media in SEO… no one has fully proved its impact on SEO but “there are conditions for doing so,” says Steve,
- Video Marketing – YouTube is the second largest search engine and anyone doing SEO should have a closer look at it.
- UX in SEO, but I think no one is surprised.
And what is SEO in the US?
It really is a completely different market – because of the language search (English), the Hummingbird is “at a higher level and understands more.” Probably this happens as more money has been spent on this language because of the US and the UK markets. Polish language also affects it – it is more complicated for Americans and they don’t really want to invest money in it, because our Poland is like their one/two states. Not to mention the digitalisation of Polish and American users.
Local SEO … when I was driving around the Venice district in Los Angeles (one of the algorithms for local results was named in its honor), completely different results for services and queries appeared at each intersection, like: pizza, hairdresser, air conditioning, tyres. I don’t know what our “specialists” paid for positions would do in such circumstances. Directories like YellowPages also play a big role in local SEO – there are about 30-40 of them, the ones basically to start with (opinions in them are also a part of the Pigeon ranking). In fact, “Link Building” of a new domain working locally starts with them.
A lot of softs are strictly dedicated to local SEO. As we all know, there are some other search engines in the US, such as .: AOL, Yahoo, Bing, but hardly anyone takes them seriously – they are so blindly focused on Google. What’s more, the Google search results are every time enriched with very different additives (double local results, knowledge graph, Google news, videos, photos, reviews etc.). It is changing and going the right direction in Poland too but our SERPs still look poorly in comparison to them.
A few words of summary
If not for the NDA, which limits me quite a lot, I could write more about the training. But as you can see, I had to refer only to the general issues.
What can I say in conclusion? Of course, that I would recommend this course to anyone – especially in the United States. It’s a great experience, there are great people and the American chill in the air. I won’t hold myself not to mention 24°C outside in December.
As we all know, the US market is different from the Polish one. But we are going the same direction and probably the time will come when we all have the same conditions as in the United States. When it comes – I’ll be ready and so far I suggest my customers to do what is available with us now but in the best possible release ?
The examples of SERPs with Tampa Florida location for Google.pl and Google.com with personalization with location
kebab – Search in Google pl
And this is an example of how Google uses Gmail in order to get “the best” result matches for the user ?
How could I forget that I already have one rented car
Leave a ReplyWant to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!