Kamis, 29 Desember 2011

The Best of 2011 - Posts & People Who Rocked Our World

What's better than unicorns and kittens happily leaping over rainbows with gold at the end? The Moz community, that's what!

At the end of every year we like to take a look back, not only at which posts made an impact, but which people made an impact on the community as well.

This year we're taking a peek at the top content on the blog based on thumbs up, visits, root domains, tweets and comments. Plus we have the added bonus of looking at community members who left the most comments, and those whose comments were the most thumbed up. If you've missed any of these posts over the past year, I invite you to grab a cup of coffee and start reading. I look forward to hearing about your favorite posts, plus your thoughts on why these posts did so well this year.

Before we get too ahead of ourselves, I wanted to again remember GoodnewsCowboy, a long time community member whom we lost to cancer earlier this year. GNC was an amazing man and is sorely missed around here.

For quick reference, check out the Top Posts of 2011 by:
Thumbs Up
Unique Visits
Linking Root Domains
Tweets
Total Number of Comments

And the community members who rocked our world:
Top Comments of 2011 by Thumbs Up
Top Users of 2011 By Total Comments

A few notes about the data: 1. I'm no scientist, I did my best putting this together and I apologize now if I've screwed anything up. 2. All data was pulled in the past 24 hours, so some of the numbers may have changed slightly. 3. I'm not a scientist. :) Plus, I need to send a huge thank you to Casey Henry who helped me gather quite a bit of this data. Thank you Casey!

Let's get this party started. First things first, I wanted to note that last year there were three posts with 100 or more thumbs up. This year, there were 41 posts with over 100 thumbs up. FORTY ONE. That's just crazy pants (as Joanna Lord would say). This of course made me want to figure out if the thumbs up was just a general inflation, better content, more traffic, what. I think you'll see it's a generous helping of all of that combined. For the first time the blog schedule was pretty well organized (ehem.. I may be the one who organizes this ;), we specifically reached out to get great guest bloggers, we added more amazing Associates to write for the blog and our traffic was through the roof (more on that later). But enough of my mumblings, let's get to the good stuff.

jennita

Thumbs Up: Help Raise Money for New Zealand
March 3rd, 2011 - Posted by jennita
This post is actually the top post in every single category listed below. But in order to show off more great content, I pulled it from the other lists since it dominated them all. :) I wanted to call it out here and again thank everyone for all their donations to the New Zealand Red Cross after the horrible earthquakes earlier this year. It was absolutely amazing to see the community come together so quickly.

Aaron Wheeler

1. How Google's Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever - Whiteboard Friday
June 23rd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler
Panda. As the title says, Google Panda changed SEO forever and everyone wanted to watch the video about it. Number one Yo!

Dr. Pete

2. Duplicate Content in a Post-Panda World
November 16th, 2011 - Posted by Dr. Pete
Panda... again. Pete knocks this one out of the ball park and inbound marketers across the globe liked this puppy. In fact people liked it so much they asked for him to make a PDF version that they could print out for themselves and others. Sweet.

randfish

3. The Responsibilities of SEO Have Been Upgraded
July 12th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
So, an SEO isn't just an SEO anymore, we've become so much more. Inbound Marketing anyone?

invseo

4. How Organized Spam is Taking Control of Google's Search Results
January 28th, 2011 - Posted by invseo
Whee! This awesome post started out in YouMoz and very quickly got promoted to the main blog. It really got people riled up as we headed into the new year.

randfish

5. 4 Graphics to Help Illustrate On-Page SEO
November 8th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
In grand Rand fashion, he put together these great images that will help us to demonstrate a bit easier what on-page SEO really is. You know for that boss or client who just doesn't get it. ;)

jamesagate

6. Which Type of Link Anchor Text is the Most Effective? [An Experiment]
October 11th, 2011 - Posted by jamesagate
Another top post that started off in YouMoz (YAY YouMoz!!) and won the hearts of the community. James ran an experiment and walked us through what seemed to work best!

Oli Gardner

7. The Noob Guide to Online Marketing (With Giant INFOGRAPHIC)
February 9th, 2011 - Posted by Oli Gardner
I'm not quite sure this one even needs any introduction. If you're reading this post, I'm sure you've already seen the Noob Guide (as we call it around the office). Once again Oli hits the top 10 list with an infographic (he was on it last year too #goOli!).

iPullRank

8. Just How Smart Are Search Robots?
November 29th, 2011 - Posted by iPullRank
They are smarter than you think, and Mike King explains it all, Pacman style!

randfish

9. Quantifying the Impact of Google's Keyword Referral Data Shutdown
November 14th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Whoa, whoa, whoa! What's up with this (not provided) bs?

Justin Briggs

10. Better Understanding Link-based Spam Analysis Techniques
July 31st, 2011 - Posted by Justin Briggs
Justin gets into the mind of a search engine to help us understand link-based spam detection. Sounds geektastical, doesn't it?!

Great, we've seen the posts that got the most thumbs up, but are they the same as the ones that got the most traffic? I'll give you a hint, only two of the top thumbed, are the same as the most trafficked. Which means eight of them are different. The question is, does this mean these posts got a lot of traffic from new users that didn't create accounts in order to thumb up the posts? Sadly we may never know. I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments though. Now let's look at the traffic!

Oli Gardner

1. The Noob Guide to Online Marketing (With Giant INFOGRAPHIC)
February 9th, 2011 - Posted by Oli Gardner
Yep, you'll notice a trend here... the Noob Guide is on ALL OF THE LISTS. :) #goOli

Aaron Wheeler

2. How Google's Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever - Whiteboard Friday
June 23rd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler
Pppppppppanda!

randfish

3. White Hat SEO: It F@$#ing Works
April 10th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
This was in response to a post claiming that White hat SEO is a joke, which Rand easily proved otherwise.

caseyhen

4. The New Google Social Network - Google+
June 30th, 2011 - Posted by caseyhen
z0mg! Google created a social network that doesn't suck! Everyone go get your account noooowwwwwwww.

Cyrus Shepard

5. 10 Ugly SEO Tools that Actually Rock
September 5th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Apparently people like ugly. Kidding, kidding. What this really says is that people love tools and especially ones that kick booty.

randfish

6. Facebook + Twitter's Influence on Google's Search Rankings
April 19th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Rand takes a look at some early correlation data on social influence in Google SERPs. You'll notice a trend this year and that's social, social, social.

Aaron Wheeler

7. An SEO Checklist for New Sites - Whiteboard Friday
September 22nd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron
And the crowd went wild! Seriously though, everyone knows someone who has a new website, and they came to watch this one in droves.

Cyrus Shepard

8. Blog Design for Killer SEO - Infographic
July 12th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
These days everyone tries their hand at Infographics. But Cyrus (and his wife who designed it) put the "fogra" back in Infographics. It's a great visual on blog design with SEO in mind.

Cyrus Shepard

9. Beating Google's Panda Update - 5 Deadly Content Sins
August 16th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Everyone wanted to learn how to make sure they didn't get hit by Panda, or pull themselves out of the Panda abyss.

randfish

10. New Edition of the Ranking Factors for 2011 is Now Live!
June 6th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Can I get a w00t w00t!

Well we're SEOs aren't we? Then we must take a look at the posts that have received the most backlinks! The best way to do this is to look at the number of linking root domains instead of total number of backlinks. As with everything else, you'll notice that last year there were three posts with over 100 linking root domains. However this year, there were twelve posts with over 100. SEO really does work?! What?!

randfish

1. Facebook + Twitter's Influence on Google's Search Rankings
April 19th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Everyone who wrote a post about how Facebook & Twitter are now helping with rankings, must have linked to this post. Love!

Aaron Wheeler

2. How Google's Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever - Whiteboard Friday
June 23rd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler
Poor little photos of pandas all across the web being used in posts about Google Panda. All the while linking to this highly informative Whiteboard Friday.

jennita

3. A Tweet's Effect On Rankings - An Unexpected Case Study
February 15th, 2011 - Posted by jennita
Well lookie there, I MADE IT TO THE LIST. I don't need no stinking thumbs or traffic, I'm down with the backlinks! :) (ok... I'll move on now)

Oli Gardner

4. The Noob Guide to Online Marketing (With Giant INFOGRAPHIC)
February 9th, 2011 - Posted by Oli Gardner
Noob. Guide. 'Nuf. Said.

randfish

5. Google's Farmer/Panda Update: Analysis of Winners vs. Losers
March 3rd, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Oooh everyone wants to know who made out well with Panda and who got crushed.

Tom Critchlow

6. Google +1 And The Rise of Social SEO
March 30th, 2011 - Posted by Tom Critchlow
Remember when Google +1 came out before Google+? Yea, that was odd. Anyway... Tom wrote a great post on how it changed SEO!

Cyrus Shepard

7. Blog Design for Killer SEO - Infographic
July 12th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Infographics = links.

Cyrus Shepard

8. Experiments on Google+ and Twitter Influencing Search Rankings
July 5th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Hmm more talk of this social thing helping SEO, we might be on to something here.

randfish

9. White Hat SEO: It F@$#ing Works
April 10th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
And if you haven't read this post yet, go F@$#ing read it! (sorry for the bad language, but Rand started it)

randfish

10. Social Annotations in Search: Now Your Social Network = Rankings
June 22nd, 2011 - Posted by randfish
If your aunt Betsy shares a post about gluten free brownies, you might see that in your SERPS. Wait. What?!

Ya'll have been tweeting your little fingers off this year. In 2010 there were only two posts with over 1,000 tweets, but in 2011 there were 55. This may very well be the reason for all that traffic above. :) I need to give a huge thanks to Dr. Pete for gathering this data for me at the last minute (that's how I roll). Now let's see what people like to tweet about. I should probably note that five of the 10 top tweeted posts ARE ABOUT TWITTER. heh. I know what I'm going to be writing about more in 2012.

Oli Gardner

1. The Noob Guide to Online Marketing (With Giant INFOGRAPHIC)
February 9th, 2011 - Posted by Oli Gardner
Holy tweets batman.

caseyhen

2. Yes, You Really Can Build Links With Twitter - Whiteboard Friday
September 1st, 2011 - Posted by caseyhen
You can build links with Twitter? OMG I have to tweet this!

randfish

3. Facebook + Twitter's Influence on Google's Search Rankings
April 19th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
This is starting to be like deja vu. :)

Cyrus Shepard

4. 10 Ugly SEO Tools that Actually Rock
September 5th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Any time I see a post being tweeted that has the word "ugly" in it, I totally click. Cyrus is a tweetbait master, who knew?!

Aaron Wheeler

5. How Google's Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever - Whiteboard Friday
June 23rd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler
Panda. SEO. Changed. Forever.

jennita

6. A Tweet's Effect On Rankings - An Unexpected Case Study
February 15th, 2011 - Posted by jennita
Ooh Ooh Ooh! That's me again. (Every post from here on forward shall be about Twitter)

Cyrus Shepard

7. Experiments on Google+ and Twitter Influencing Search Rankings
July 5th, 2011 - Posted by Cyrus Shepard
Google+. Twitter. Rankings. Tweet it.

dohertyjf

8. The Tweet Effect: How Twitter Affects Rankings
June 1st, 2011 - Posted by dohertyjf
Hehehe this is just getting funny the number of top tweeted posts talking about twitter. It's so meta I might cry. But really, John's post rocked the twitters.

randfish

9. Tracking the KPIs of Social Media
September 7th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Love, love, love this post. I may have even tweeted it 20 times or so from various accounts. I mean... wait... you can't prove anything!

randfish

10. White Hat SEO: It F@$#ing Works
April 10th, 2011 - Posted by randfish
Don't make me tell you again.

Here's the thing, mozzers comment a lot. It's really quite amazing how many comments a post will get, even the mediocre ones. There are tons of exceptional industry blogs out there, but I've never seen one get this many comments to every post. I absolutely love that the community is so generous! Below we'll take a look at the top commenters, but for now let's see which posts caused the most disucssion. Oh! Most of these have been mentioned above, so I left out my comments (since you're probably getting tired of them anyway).

Aaron Wheeler

1. How Google's Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever - Whiteboard Friday
June 23rd, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler

Lindsay

2. 32 SEO Tactics to Avoid in 2011
January 18th, 2011 - Posted by Lindsay

randfish

3. White Hat SEO: It F@$#ing Works
April 10th, 2011 - Posted by randfish

Oli Gardner

4. The Noob Guide to Online Marketing (With Giant INFOGRAPHIC)
February 9th, 2011 - Posted by Oli Gardner

Aaron Wheeler

5. Article Marketing: Mostly A Scam - Whiteboard Friday
August 25th, 2011 - Posted by Aaron Wheeler

Dr. Pete

6. Duplicate Content in a Post-Panda World
November 16th, 2011 - Posted by Dr. Pete

randfish

7. Quantifying the Impact of Google's Keyword Referral Data Shutdown
November 14th, 2011 - Posted by randfish

Tom Anthony

8. Competitive Analysis in Under 60 Seconds Using Google Docs
May 15th, 2011 - Posted by Tom Anthony

randfish

9. The Responsibilities of SEO Have Been Upgraded
July 12th, 2011 - Posted by randfish

Tom Critchlow

10. Google +1 And The Rise of Social SEO
March 30th, 2011 - Posted by Tom Critchlow

Yay! Now we get to take a look at some of the people making "waves" in the community. This list shows the top 10 comments based on the number of thumbs up it received. Some of them are cooky and fun, while others are direct and to-the-point. Take a peek:

SandroM

1. SandroM | January 19th, 2011
32 SEO Tactics to Avoid in 2011

Jonathon Colman

2. Jonathon Colman | September 24th, 2011
Crawl Outage - An Update and What We're Doing

randfish

3. randfish | September 2nd, 2011
Yes, You Really Can Build Links With Twitter - Whiteboard Friday

russvirante

4. russvirante | September 26th, 2011
Crawl Outage - An Update and What We're Doing

iulian lita

5. iulian lita | January 18th, 2011
32 SEO Tactics to Avoid in 2011

Liza Shulyayeva

6. Liza Shulyayeva | July 12th, 2011
The Responsibilities of SEO Have Been Upgraded

Dan Deceuster

7. Dan Deceuster | September 15th, 2011
5 Reasons Why Copying Links is Bad for You

Frederik Hyldig

8. Frederik Hyldig | August 26th, 2011
Article Marketing: Mostly A Scam - Whiteboard Friday

gfiorelli1

9. gfiorelli1 | July 12th, 2011
The Responsibilities of SEO Have Been Upgraded

randfish

10. randfish | July 6th, 2011
Experiments on Google+ and Twitter Influencing Search Rankings

So who commented the most you ask? Well if you're around the blog much you probably already know that Gianluca is the king of comments. I wanted to also note that our friend GoodnewsCowboy (who I mentioned above) was the top commenter last year. This year he fell to the 15th spot, and that's only with having comments through March 16th.

One note about the top users, all Associates and staff have been removed from this list (There were five that would have made the list: Rand, Dr. Pete, Cyrus, myself & iPullRank). So who are our chatty Kathy's?

gfiorelli1James NorquayJenni BrownMoosa Hemanialgogmbh_petraDubs

6. Dubs
mozPoints: 284 | Rank: 162

webpagefxseojoshuahedlundSEOTakeawaysStephen

10. Stephen
mozPoints: 1724 | Rank: 15

Are you as enamored as I am with this post? I sure hope so! It was a ton of fun to put together (even though you may have heard me grumbling on twitter about it). I always love taking a look back at the past year's posts and realizing how much has really happened in a year! This year the obvious themes were the convergence of search and social, plus the Panda update. I hope you'll bookmark this post and read through the ones you may have missed throughout the year. What was your favorite post this year?

Spectacularly awesome image of unicorns, kittens and rainbows from Sarcastic Monday.

About jennita — Jen Lopez is the Community Manager at SEOmoz and a devotee of the fine arts of Twitter, Facebook and all things social media. She has a background in web development and will always be an SEO at heart. Follow her on Twitter @jennita.

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