John Shehata

Guest Bio:

John is a highly experienced SEO with over 25 years of expertise in the digital marketing space.

He has worked with numerous major companies, including Disney, ESPN, The Atlantic, and more.

He has served in leadership roles directing SEO teams of over 100 experts.

He founded the enterprise SEO company NewzDash and the news SEO conference NESS.

He is widely recognized for his technical SEO innovations and strategies tailored for news and enterprise sites.

He is a sought-after consultant, speaker, and writer who continues to shape the SEO industry.

Please welcome John Shehata!

Knowledge Bombs:

19:18 –  How does John get ranking on page one of Google?

John emphasizes hard work, quality content, and technical hygiene for high Google ranking. He believes there’s no one-sentence shortcut to success and emphasizes dedication and effort in achieving top rankings, citing his experience with major publishers. 

20:02 – How did John got into SEO?

John was on the verge of becoming a pharmacist before switching to computer science and learning about SEO while creating marketing tools. Learning from books and conferences, he developed a whole business around SEO, demonstrating his love of computers and arithmetic.  

25:57 – How to outrank YouTube?

John’s early SEO experiments, including using keywords and techniques to outrank YouTube, led to his own sites outperforming established platforms. His hands-on approach and continuous testing of tactics contributed to his ability to outperform larger websites in search engine rankings.

23:16 – John’s love for SEO

John’s passion for SEO stems from his work on marketing tools at an agency. He finds it fascinating and emphasizes hands-on experience. His dedication has led him to build a business and share industry insights.  

24:17 – John got to work with such great names

His accumulated expertise and long-standing experience in working with major publishers and platforms equipped him to work with such prominent names. This journey emphasizes the value of hands-on experience and continuous learning to make significant professional strides.

26:30 – Key foundational principles that publishers should know

News SEO results are immediate, and visible within minutes. Publishers should focus on technical SEO, schema, XML sitemaps, and fast crawling for authority with search engines. Crucial for quick indexing, especially for breaking news or niche content.

28:58 – Strategies of implementing solid news by John

John emphasizes the significance of evergreen content, timely news updates, technical aspects like schema and XML sitemaps, fast article indexing, and authority signals for publishers to enhance their online presence and traffic.

33:25 – Some mistakes that John’s see on some publishers 

John warns publishers of a risky shift towards Google Discover, which could lead to unreliable and volatile traffic. He advises them to prioritize SEO best practices and balance leveraging Discover with sustainable SEO strategies. 

34:44 – The importance of search intents for news

User intent for news content is primarily informational, often focused on current events or specific topics. Publishers should align their content with trending topics and recognized entities to meet audience needs, enhance relevance, and increase visibility.

38:45 – Content strategies to increase chances of being featured on Google Discover

To boost Google Discover feature chances, publishers can optimize titles, use high-quality visuals, and prioritize SEO best practices. Despite the volatility of Discover traffic, a balance between leveraging Discover and focusing on SEO can enhance their chances.

58:49 – John’s one tip for someone who wants to become a SEO professional

John emphasizes the importance of hands-on experience in SEO, suggesting starting with WordPress website creation and optimization, following trusted SEOs, and understanding the effectiveness of SEO strategies, rather than relying solely on reading.

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