Mads Singers is a people management consultant, outsourcing & SEO expert with 7+ years of experience. Mads’ clients include some of the most well-known people in the SEO & eCommerce industry such as Xerox & IBM. He also runs SEO Mastery Summit and Mads Singers Management Podcast. To know more about Mads, follow his Twitter page.
1. How many years of experience in digital marketing, SEO do you have?
I started in the online marketing space in 2007, where I build my first affiliate website. I had dabbled with a few websites previously, but nothing monetized.
2. What projects have you launched recently that you are proud of?
I kicked off an online conference last year, the SEO Mastery Summit, that has been absolutely awesome. We have a unique concept, where we have 40+ speakers at each event with no-repeat speakers. There are a ton of smart SEO’s in the world and we want to give many an opportunity to shine and share.
3. In your opinion, what are the most common SEO errors?
Lack of focus is probably the biggest issue – the grass is always greener, other projects more fun, etc.
4. What SEO tactics do you think are underrated?
The core of SEO is still content & links, if you aren’t spending 80%+ of your time and resources on those, you are probably chasing golden fixes.
5. What are the 2021 SEO trends?
Lots of schema and structured data, lots of focus on keyword clustering & lots link wise things are turning much more towards valuable PR rather than the more old fashion link strategies.
6. Do you believe that backlinks are Google’s past? Is link building important for increasing the website’s positions nowadays?
You can build a site without backlinks and do relatively well in many niches, however, you can always walk 100 miles instead of driving, which doesn’t mean it’s the fastest or what brings you the biggest ROI. If you have amazing content, links are still rocket fuel.
7. In your opinion, does the technical health of the website affect the ranking positions in search engines?
Obviously! However, I think too many people spend too much time on it, overthink and try to find clever fixes that will change the world. My experience is that some tech issues can 100% kill your site, however, in most cases, they are minor things and you are often much better focusing on the basics of links and content. Then once in a while pay someone with technical expertise to take a look for any horrible mistakes.
8. In your opinion, does a user’s behavior impact on website ranking in SERP?
Yes, the volume of users and generally how they behave on your site makes a difference, but like many other things, it’s probably not where you should spend the majority of your time.
9. How to make a website search engine friendly? Could you please name the main steps?
- Create solid content that answers the searchers’ queries.
- Structure the sites with internal relevant links, so the bots can easily crawl your site and it’s obvious to them what content is related.
- Make it fast and avoid obvious errors such as 404’s, orphan pages, etc.
10. SEO is such a controversial thing. Every SEO specialist rates its success differently. What is your way to rate SEO success? What metrics do you look at?
There’s only ever one metric in business – Are you making money? Are you getting decent ROI on what you are putting in? Simple as that.
11. In your opinion, a good SEO specialist should be a good analyst? What extra knowledge should SEO specialists have to succeed?
Specializing in behavior and management I have worked with a ton of people, the single most important skill for success in SEO is Focus and persistence. It will bring you a lot further and you will make a lot more money, than being the “know it all” super detail-oriented data nerd. If you look at the most successful (well at least in terms of money) SEOs out there, you will see that they are generally very driven and competitive individuals.
12. Should a business have a corporate blog?
A business benefits from evaluating where they expect to get a solid ROI for investing their resources (Time and Money), SEO isn’t always the best solution for every business at every moment. It’s typically a longer-term strategy that has a high ROI in the long term for the majority of businesses, but you can be just as successful in business without doing any SEO.
13. How can start-ups and early-stage businesses use SEO effectively to drive traffic to their sites?
Sharing valuable content for their audience. In the beginning, it can be helpful targeting lower competition keywords, as it’s often helpful with traction and traffic before you start targeting higher-level keywords.
14. How to build effective SEO teams?
Like with all businesses, building a team is about working with your budgets, understanding where investments make the most sense, and hiring great people.
Sitting down building a longer-term plan for how it would make sense for the business to look from a manpower point of view is a great starting point.
When looking at the near and short term, looking at these 3 areas you can often find where it makes the most sense to hire right now:
- What are the things that could easily be done by others? (Simple processes and workflows)
- What are the things you/your team is spending a lot of time on, that could have someone do the work fully focused and specialized, free up existing manpower with more time?
- What are things that you/your team suck at right now or hate doing, that someone could be brought in specifically for, that they would like to do?
15. Have you ever used black hat and grey hat SEO tactics? What do you think about them?
I think in any business, one has to always weigh risk and rewards – sometimes a business takes a loan and invest in growth, sometimes it goes well, and sometimes it doesn’t… SEO is no different and reality is whatever you call the tactics, you can get slapped by a Google update. Many no matter what color of hat they are wearing, have had a slap (or a punch) – so at the end of the day, the question is what way you feel you get the best long-term ROI.
16. What can you tell about mobile SEO? Is it true for you that mobile SEO will absolutely force out desktop soon?
It’s not about forcing out desktop, it’s about knowing where your audience is and making sure your site towards them look absolutely stellar – if 70%+ of your audience is on a mobile device, your site needs to be optimized for that big piece of customers.
17. Structured data is becoming more and more important these days. What do you think about it? Why did Google start to pay so much attention to structured data sites?
Data and helping good understand your site, helps you in the longer run, however like with most things it’s very much an ROI question – for some sites investing a lot into it makes sense, for other sites, perhaps not so much.
18. What is the best approach to developing an SEO strategy?
The best plan is to have one – Most people don’t….
So sit down, develop a simple framework of how you work with the types of sites you have, including a solid content plan, then do the work.
Most SEO’s end up spending a bunch of time on stuff that doesn’t make a big difference, in my mind content+links is still 80-90% of the focus, as that’s what moves the needle, whereas focusing too much time on “hacks” and “shortcuts” just end up being a waste of time.
19. Does your university degree help to succeed in SEO and digital marketing?
I don’t have one, so wouldn’t know 😉 However, generally, I’m not a big fan of ordinary education.
20. Are you going to surprise the SEO and Digital Marketing world with something new (tool/app, course, product)?
Not any of mine, however, we’ve started using a new tool called writerzen.com, that despite the name is a fully-fledged SEO tool with some new unique functions, particularly around keyword research, that’s been super interesting.
21. How do you see the future of SEO (in 5 years)?
I expect it will keep developing, don’t see SEO go away in the next 5 years, but people need to adapt to more mobile/different types of search.