04- Apr2018
Posted By: DPadmin
19 Views

3 SEO tasks to start 2018 off with a bang

Wondering where to focus your efforts this year in order to gain an edge over your competitors? Columnist Jeremy Knauff has some ideas.

We’re just about three weeks into the new year, and the momentum you establish now can easily set the pace for the rest of your year.

I’d like to help you start 2018 off with a bang by earning three simple wins that will set the stage for further success and growth, not just for this year, but long into the future.

These wins are simple, but that doesn’t mean they’re easy — because while the concepts are not complex, a lot of work will be required to accomplish them.

That may seem like a bad thing, but it’s actually a blessing in disguise because it means that most of your competitors won’t even put in the effort, which will give you a significant advantage over them.

Improve page speed to improve ranking

Google just recently announced that beginning in July 2018, mobile page speed will be a ranking factor for its mobile search results. Page speed also has a significant impact on user experience, and several aspects of user experience are direct ranking factors, too.

Studies show that the faster a web page loads, the longer visitors will remain, and in most cases, more of them will convert to paying customers compared to visitors on slower websites.

Most people have a tremendous opportunity for improvement in this area because they don’t realize how poorly their website is performing. I was recently talking with a potential client about SEO for his website, and when the topic of page speed came up, he proudly insisted that his website “loads super fast — usually in under one or two seconds!”

If that were true, it would have been phenomenal; however, it was actually closer to thirty seconds, according to the tests I performed using several different tools.

It’s important to point out that when I talk about page speed, I’m not specifically talking about Google’s PageSpeed Insights. I’m talking about how long it takes a web page to load in general.

Some ways you can improve page speed include:

  • investing in high-performance web hosting.
  • reducing http calls by merging CSS and JavaScript files, eliminating WordPress plugins and using sprites.
  • properly scaling and compressing images.
  • implementing server caching, browser caching and Gzip compression.
  • minifying CSS and JavaScript files.

Leverage a personal brand for link building

If you’ve managed a website for any length of time, you’ve most likely been on the receiving end of a lot of link requests, and I think it’s a safe bet that most of them were probably terrible. Now I’m going to say something that might hurt your feelings: If you’ve sent a link request, it was probably terrible, too.

Cold link outreach is challenging, and you generally don’t earn very many links in relation to the number of emails you send out. This is because you’re asking for something from a stranger before you’ve built any rapport, which is an almost certain recipe for disaster. Effective link building depends on relationships, not brute force and volume.

link outreach email

While certainly not the worst link outreach email I’ve ever seen, this isn’t a particularly effective approach.

Rather than cold link outreach, a more effective strategy is to develop a personal brand that others want to connect with. This is easier said than done because it will require a tremendous amount of work, performed consistently over a relatively long period of time.

However, once you’ve developed a personal brand, it will be much easier to leverage the kind of relationships you’ll then develop, to efficiently build links. In fact, if your personal brand becomes powerful enough, often, people will link to your content without you even asking.

A few ways you can develop a personal brand include:

  • creating consistently branded profiles on key social networks.
  • regularly sharing valuable content from others in your industry, along with your insight on it.
  • engaging with your audience, both those below and above your stature within your industry.
  • regularly publishing amazing content, both on your own website and in industry publications and top-tier business publications like Forbes, Entrepreneur and Fast Company.

Incorporate video into your SEO efforts

Video is a driving force in digital marketing today, and we’re quickly approaching a point where it’s just as essential as having a website and social media presence. It can play a significant role in your SEO efforts in two distinct ways.

The first is that video often helps to keep interested visitors on your website longer. Google sees this as a sign of a positive user experience, which has a beneficial impact on your organic ranking. A side benefit here is that you’re also giving visitors more of a chance to truly connect with your brand.

The second is that by publishing your videos on YouTube, you have the potential to put your brand in front of a larger audience through YouTube’s search results. (YouTube is often referred to as the “second-largest search engine in the world” due to its position as the second-most-visited website globally after Google, according to Alexa rankings.)

On top of that, you’re leveraging the authority of YouTube’s domain, so you also have the opportunity to get your videos ranked in Google’s search results.

I know a lot of you right now are saying, “Whoa, Jeremy! There’s no way in hell I’m getting on video!”

Look, I understand that being on video can feel uncomfortable, awkward, and even terrifying, but it doesn’t have to be any of those things. Once you start doing video regularly, you’ll get used to it, and besides — it’s become a necessity, so unless you want to lose ground to competitors, you have to step outside of your comfort zone.

Video expert Holly Gillen of Holly G Studios says, “Video is one of the most powerful tools you have in business today! The race has begun, and if you’re not running you are now getting left behind. At the end of the day, you can have video or you can have excuses, but you can’t have both.”

Some ways you can incorporate video into your SEO include:

  • creating videos that answer questions your prospects have about your products, services and industry, as well as videos that demonstrate who you are and why you do what you do.
  • optimizing your videos on YouTube so they’ll show up in YouTube’s search, in conjunction with that, building relevant, high-quality links to them so that they show up in Google’s search results.
  • embedding your videos from YouTube on your own website to keep visitors engaged and on your website longer.

Source: 3 SEO tasks to start 2018 off with a bang – Search Engine Land

06- Mar2018
Posted By: DPadmin
47 Views

Why Building a Brand Is the Most Viable SEO Strategy

Google has always given brands preferential treatment.

They get better rankings with fewer links. They get “penalized” for improper conduct, only to resurface a few weeks later.

Small brands, on the other hand?

Never get the benefit of the doubt. Need to earn twice as many links. And never resurface. Ever.

And this is only accelerating. It’s only getting more pronounced.

So much so, that there’s virtually nothing else you should focus on in 2018, besides building a brand. Big brands will get showcased in the SERPs. And small companies will be left in the dust.

Here’s why.

SERPs Are Changing Dramatically

Google is known for tinkering. Thousands of times a year.

But it isn’t just the algorithm updates we should pay attention to. The cause and effect of layout adjustments also changes user behavior.

For example, featured snippets have been on the rise.

featured snippet

Moz found that they’ve risen from 5.5 percent to 16 percent in just two years. But they recently saw a 10 percent decrease in featured snippets in a matter of four days.

So, what happened?

The knowledge panels got a serious boost in visibility, for starters. Search terms like “Graphic Design,” that once had featured snippets, now have gone full knowledge panel:

knowledge graphs

And all those related searches above have it now, too. Even a generic search for “travel” will net you this:

travel knowledge graph

Moz also found a 30 percent increase in knowledge panels for SERPs without a featured snippet in the first place.

So what’s happening?

Google is trying to answer the query. With content from other people. Without requiring them to click to view the source.

Where searches for “travel” would once net travel-based blog posts or definitions on branded sites, Google now pulls data directly into the SERPs.

And most of that content is coming from huge brands and definition-based sources like Wikipedia.

That means the pool of helpful content is narrowed down to a few big players.

People don’t have to click on an organic listing to get information anymore. And currently, only one brand is being featured in a given knowledge panel.

Spoiler alert: It probably isn’t you.

Less and less people are clicking on actual search engine listings now. We’re currently at a 60/40 split.

Only 60 percent of searches on Google results in a click. That’s 40 percent generating zero clicks. And smarter people than me expect that to hit 50 percent soon.

And for smaller fish trying to swim past the reef, that’s bad news.

Google’s implementation of the Knowledge Graph is solving user problems without the need to click. And the majority of brands ranking in the knowledge panels are the big ones.

That means less traffic, fewer clicks, and more importantly: less organically-driven sales.

Brand Recognition Is Critical to Getting Clicks

Do me a favor real quick:

Perform a basic test right now on Google. Perform an obscure, long-tail search for an industry keyword and analyze the SERPs.

What do you see? What sticks out instantly?

Specific brands.

HubSpot. Search Engine Journal. Marketo.

bestmarketingblogger.com? Not so much.

Even if bestmarketingblogger.com is ranking #1, you’re probably going to skip right over it to a familiar site.

Just like you’d choose Coca-Cola over your local grocery store’s generic version.

Brand recognition is a powerful thing. Powerful enough for you to skip on Google’s top ranking post. Powerful enough to drive a more expensive sale.

We can’t help it. We’re creatures of habit.

We do what feels comfortable. What we know and what we can trust.

For example, a Nielsen study found that global consumers are far more likely to buy new products from brands that are familiar.

Sixty percent of consumers would rather buy new products from a familiar brand that they recall, rather than switching to a new one.

Take this “basketball shoes” sponsored search result for an example:

basketball shoes sponsored search

Which shoe would you buy? Probably Nike.

They’re a familiar brand that’s known for producing high-quality basketball shoes. Plus they’ve got Lebron and Kobe and Jordan.

Champion on the other hand? C’mon, son.

The Champion shoe could be cheaper. And you’re still more likely to click on Nike, first.

Trust is one of the most important factors in making a purchase decision. And it’s no different when it comes to organic search results.

You’re going to click on what you know and trust. And that all comes down to branding.

For example, with this SERP below, nearly every article is the same.

small business SEO SERP

“XX SEO tips for small businesses.” The content is virtually the same. Meaning clicks are going to come down to one thing:

Brand recognition.

Does Forbes instantly stand out in your mind as a popular source of information? They get the click. Even though it has nothing to do with their content quality (another spoiler: It’s not good).

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Research from Search Engine Land and Survey Monkey again proves this underlying trend. They surveyed over 400 consumers on one specific question:

What is most important in helping you decide which results to click on in a search engine search?

According to their data, nearly 70 percent of U.S. consumers said they look for a “known retailer” when deciding what search results to click on.

The stronger the brand recognition, the higher the odds of generating clicks. Which means the higher the odds of getting the sale.

SERP CTR Is Beginning to Outperform Rankings

Ranking number one doesn’t mean what it used to anymore.

Historical SERP click-through rate graphs are beginning to lie. You know, the ones that say ranking first on Google gets you 30+percent of clicks for an unbranded search.

The stats I referenced above prove that’s not the case anymore.

If nobody knows who you are, you aren’t generating 30+ percent of the organic clicks. The content might be amazing. But you’re a nobody. So nobody’s giving you a chance.

SERP CTR is becoming more important than traditional rankings, too.

And in fact, SERP CTR likely has an impact on rankings.

While links and content are the top two direct ranking factors, SERP CTR is creeping up as an indirect factor.

Check out this tweet from Rand Fishkin of Moz:

Rand Fishkin tweet

That’s evidence of Google analyzing search queries and clicks to see what content users preferred.

No click on the first position? That’s a signal to Google that it’s not performing like a top piece of content.

More clicks might, in fact, result in a rankings boost.

And WordStream’s own data just backed this up, finding that the more your pages beat the expected organic CTR for a query, the more likely they are to appear higher in organic listings.

But when you don’t have the luxury of brand awareness, people don’t see your content until they click. So they really don’t know how amazing it is.

And sadly, they probably never will:

The vast majority are clicking because of brand recognition, not content strength.

similar content better brand strength

It’s the same with digital advertising and purchase behavior too. Brand aware users are 2x more likely to purchase from you.

If HubSpot is two spots below you, you can bet that the lion’s share of “your” traffic is being stolen.

Those fancy headline hacks and meta description tweaks can improve your CTR, sure.

Going against the grain and producing clickbait-esque headlines might get you a 1-2 percent increase:

content marketing clickbait

But not enough to have a big impact.

Not enough to take your traffic and double it.

Small changes won’t net massive results.

If they did, we’d all be dominating the competition, and I wouldn’t be writing this post.

Simply A/B testing or changing a button color won’t do it either.

Large-scale changes are needed to produce better SEO results.

Branding is the only way to do it, and it’s the most viable SEO strategy on the market today.

Focusing on branding will help drive higher click-through rates in organic SERPs, which correlates with higher conversion rates.

A fantastic, cheap way to put this into practice is using cheap social ads to drive brand awareness.

Facebook has the cheapest CPM out of any advertising platform ever created.

You can get away with spending $1 per day, reaching up to 4,000 new users with brand awareness ads.

That’s roughly 120,000 new faces coming across your brand monthly for just $30.

There’s no cheaper way to build brand awareness than with social ads.

Use them to drive traffic to your latest content and build a brand reputation in the process.

brand awareness social media

Branding is an investment in your company’s future. Sure, the effects won’t be instant.

But when your organic traffic is declining, and brands are starting to overpower you, you’ll wish you’d invested in it sooner.

Conclusion

Google has given brands preferential treatment for years now.

And that preferential treatment only increases with each minor and major update.

It’s a vicious trap where the rich keep cruising, and the poor keep drowning.

Branding is our only hope for conducting better SEO in 2018.

The vast majority of consumers cite brand recognition as driving clicks and sales.

And that means those typical organic CTR graphs are a heaping pile of BS.

Brand recall drives more clicks and sales than positioning.

As Google SERPs shift more toward favoring big brands, it’s time for smaller brands to invest more of their SEO budget and strategy into building a memorable brand.

Source: Why Building a Brand Is the Most Viable SEO Strategy

08- Nov2017
Posted By: DPadmin
213 Views

How do explainer videos boost your SEO ranking? 

How do explainer videos boost your SEO ranking?

Explainer videos are becoming a very popular digital marketing tool. They are used on company websites, on the second largest search engine in the world- YouTube, and as a significant part of social media ad campaigns to create a social buzz.

Explainer videos often contain captivating visual cues and fun animation that make the visitor want to watch it till the end and share it with friends. Data from this study indicates that shoppers who view videos are 1.81 times more likely to make a purchase than shoppers who don’t.

What’s more, this website states that simply having an explainer video on your website makes you 58% more likely to achieve the holy grail of SEO – appear on page one of google organic search results page. How exactly do explainer videos achieve these seemingly amazing feats? Read on to find out.

Keeps your visitors on your website

Laptop illustration

Google’s algorithms may be unfathomable to the average user and sometimes even expert SEO agencies are unable to completely unravel the mysteries of google, however, Michelle Blake, SEO expert at Infintech Designs says “We know for sure that google keeps track of how long visitors stay on a website, as this indicates that the website has useful and engaging content. The average website visit time is 8 seconds.

An engaging explainer video can keep a visitor on your website for up to two minutes, sometimes even longer if they decide to watch it a second time.” This represents a 1500% increase in your average web visit time. This increase in web site visit time can increase your SEO ranking because it makes google classify your site as very useful.

This explains one of the ways in which having an explainer video boosts your ranking on search engine return page.

Google + YouTube is the ultimate combination

Although google may seem to eclipse other search engines, it is crucial that you rank highly on other search engines as well. Did you know that YouTube is currently the second largest search engine and the third largest social media website in the world?

The only way to show up on a YouTube search is to upload a video that could either be independent or used for a YouTube push ad campaign. A captivating and interesting explainer video gives you exposure on YouTube which in turn translates to increased website traffic.

Everybody knows that website traffic is an important factor in Google’s algorithm for SEO ranking. Although YouTube can be used as an independent digital marketing strategy thanks to its extensive reach and popularity, don’t forget to always leave information that links to your company’s webpage at the end of your explainer video.

Google SEO ranking likes video content

Google

Video content has increased in its popularity of use as a marketing tool and for regular online content. Explainer videos are a fun and easy way to learn about different topics no matter how complex.  62% of google search return always include websites with video content. This means that a person is more likely to happen upon a search result that has web content (more exposure for your company).

More importantly, it is also an indication to the fact that google places more emphasis on websites that have video content and are more likely to return a higher ranking for your website if it has video content. Even more interesting is the fact that from this search study carried out by Searchmetrics, 80% of video content returns came from YouTube.

It follows naturally that if you want your website to have a higher ranking then use video content. Improve your chances of being ranked higher than other video content when you upload it using Google’s own YouTube.

Explainer videos attract more inbound links

How do they do that? Explainer videos are sharable. Sharing your videos mean you are getting free promotions based on the fact that people love your explainer video. It is a known fact that animated videos are the most shared type of marketing content.

Shared videos mean more inbound links and more traffic to your website which will in turn increase your ranking on search return pages.

Apart from the impact on your SEO, having a cute and shareable explainer video that people share provides you with free marketing and can help create a buzz on social media for your company.

One word – video thumbnails (oops that was two words)

The appeal of the visual element can never be overstated. If your video appears in a search, google pulls up a thumbnail for it.  Thanks to the appeal of a visual cue, the searcher is more likely to click on the video thumbnail.

If you added your video metadata and created a video sitemap in addition to uploading the video on YouTube and embedding it on your website, then Google will associate the video with your web page.

This is a good way to harness the value of having a video on your webpage and converting it to increased website traffic which in turn improves your SEO ranking.

Viral videos

Technically there’s no real way to make a video go viral. You can only create a great video and put it out there while hoping that the stars align and your video goes viral. Several explainer videos have gone viral before.

A viral video often translate into thousands of views, and sometimes even millions. Again this often translates to heavy website traffic that is a significant factor for a website’s organic search ranking.

Videos in general, and particularly, a very well created explainer video is very important for web page ranking. A good SEO strategy that does not incorporate the use of explainer video is missing a huge piece of the puzzle.

While videos are not good to be used as a standalone SEO strategy, when added to other elements that affect organic search engine ranking the effect is often synergistic and can result in immediate and noticeable boosts to your SEO.

Some may argue that these effects are indirect and as such only have minimal value but the statistics show that these indirect effects when wielded properly has the capacity to result in optimal results.

Source: How do explainer videos boost your SEO ranking? | Easier

11- Oct2017
Posted By: DPadmin
145 Views

How to compete with national retailers by utilising the power of PPC: a guide for small retailers – Retail Times

What is PPC? Pay-Per-Click advertising is a form of online advertising in which you pay a certain fee each time someone clicks on one of your ads. In simple terms, if you create ad copy that contains the word “summer shoes”, and your target audience is women, PPC can enable your ad to show up as the top result in Google for someone searching “summer shoes for women”.

Most national retailers are well aware of PPC advertising and integrate it into their marketing campaigns. By doing so, they are able to dominate local listings and effectively leave local retailers behind. This also blocks local retailers from gaining access to a national audience.

Having a PPC strategy is essential to generate traffic to your website and thus, boost your sales. To ensure your PPC strategy is effective, you need to have certain practices in place.

So, what can be done to compete with national retailers who have a huge advertising budget, nationwide presence and brand awareness at a local level?

Utilise the power of location-based advertising

All the main search engines and social media platforms allow you to display ads (both text and image) in specific locations. This can be done at city or town level (such as “Oxford” or “Abingdon”) or by using a radius around a location such as “10 miles around Abingdon” or “5 miles around OX1”.

Because the message can be specifically targeted at a chosen location, it can be tailored to that audience. National retailers rarely push out local messages, focusing on a more general approach. This gives local retailers an advantage.

A few examples include:

  1. Using localised keywords as part of your PPC keyword selection, such as:
    • “Washing Machines Skipton”
    • “Dishwashers Portishead”
    • “Hair Dryers Oxford”

These searches are hyper localised and predominantly performed by people in the local area looking for a local retailer. Thus, Click Through Rates and Conversion Rates are likely to be high.

  1. Using localised messages in your ad copy to advertise your local presence. These could be:
    • “Washing machines Oxford”
    • “Local washing machine shop in Oxford”
    • “In stock in Oxford right now”
    • “Oxford’s number 1 washing machine centre”
    • “Get advice, drop in to our Warrington branch or call”
  1. Using the display URL in AdWords to advertise your location: www.example.com/oxford or www.hooversbuxton.co.uk.
  2. Promoting your local phone numbers in your ads and onsite, which increases local relevancy and can drive increases in calls, sales and revenue.

Mobile is everything

Imagine this: you are out and about, and suddenly realise you have completely forgotten about a birthday party your daughter is going to later in the day. What’s your first instinct?

Pull out your smartphone and search for “kid’s birthday presents”. Go to the nearest store that pops up. Job done.

Mobile has completely dominated the way we search, which opens a variety of opportunities for retailers. However, it can be a challenge. Local businesses often don’t recognise the importance of making their sites mobile-friendly.

Google uses mobile-first indexing, which means mobile-friendly pages are more likely to be found, as they will show up higher in search engine rankings. Use that to your advantage!

Make it easy for people to find you

The above-mentioned scenario relies heavily on a customer being able to find you easily. The first step to achieving that is by setting up a Google My Business account. By getting your business listed, and including all the relevant (and up to date) details, such as your address, phone number, website etc. you make sure customers will be able to find you quickly and easily.

When using Google Maps, and searching for a particular product, we are often shown a box which contains three listings in the local area which match our query and supply the product or service we are looking for. This box is called the “Google Local pack” – and it’s very convenient to be a part of it!

Ensuring your Google My Business account is set up properly, and linked to your advertising account will help you get the top spot and thus your address will show up for people who are searching for your products locally. 

Rank higher in Google, so people find you more often

It is universally known, that people rarely venture past the first two pages of Google (or Bing) search results. This means, as a retailer, it should be your goal to rank as high as possible.

You can achieve that by doing one of two things (or, for best effects, by a combination of both):

Create high-quality content for your website. Whether it be blogs, case studies, ‘How to?’ guides – the possibilities are endless. What matters is that it shows expertise, is comprehensive, goes deep into the subject and of course, focuses on the keywords you are targeting.

Even if you think your niche or specialism is not something you can create engaging content about – think again. Curiosity is deeply embedded in human nature and therefore you can be confident that the more quality content you create, the more people will want to read more.

The second part of ranking high is by bidding on certain keywords, which will help position your website higher in search results. For example, if you choose to bid on “Christmas gifts Durham”, a link to your page will be displayed to people searching for that term.

However, even if your listing shows up first, but the ad isn’t very enticing, they might choose a different website. Therefore, make sure you invest in good quality ad copy as well.

Plan for seasonality

You probably won’t run all your AdWords accounts all year round. It is important to look at trends data to ensure you are planning for product seasonality.

If you have been managing your account for a while, the data available to you is invaluable and can be used for more accurate creation of future campaigns. However, bear in mind that if you have a wide range of products, the seasonality of different products will be varied as well.

For more insight on how to plan for seasonality in retail have a look at our guide on how to get a PPC account ready for Christmas-time sales

Believe in yourself!

Finally, never forget to believe in yourself and your business’s potential. Being a small, local business doesn’t mean you don’t stand a chance with national retailers.

Remember, people love what they know – and being a local business means there’s a bigger chance your potential consumers will form an emotional connection with you.

Increasing your online presence is bound to increase your brand awareness. Whether you are a kid’s goods supplier or a car dealership, the end goal is for people to associate your area of activity with your brand.

Source: How to compete with national retailers by utilising the power of PPC: a guide for small retailers – Retail Times

11- Oct2017
Posted By: DPadmin
230 Views

Amazon SEO: A guide to improving your rankings on Amazon

Did you know that 55% of online shoppers turn to Amazon to begin product searches?

“Amazon has become the reference point for shoppers,” Jason Seeba, head of marketing for BloomReach told Bloomberg Tech. “Shoppers will go to Amazon first to find a product and check prices.”

If you are looking for a launching pad for your products that your target audience likes and finds useful, Amazon is it. To get the most from your listings on Amazon, however, you will need to employ some SEO tactics to showcase your products and business.

The following will serve as your guide to expert Amazon SEO and ranking your products on the largest online retail site in the world.

Understanding Amazon results pages

Knowing the intricacies of how Amazon displays products can be very beneficial to getting your products seen. They pretty much have two results page formats.

There is the list view with 15 product results covering all departments.

Also the gallery view with 24 results per page displayed when specific categories or departments are searched.

Understanding the results pages is kind of like knowing how many positions there are on a Google results page, with their own types of ads and organic results.

Other key aspects of Amazon’s results pages are the filter fields located on the left hand side of the page (sidebar).

A user that navigates the filter will get a subset of the originally search query. This makes completing all the fields in your product listing increasingly important.

For example, if you are listing a “16GB” iPhone 6, you will want to make sure that field is filled in when listing the iPhone. Otherwise, shoppers interested ONLY in the internal memory size of 16GB could possibly miss your listing.

There are also sponsored products listed in the bottom section of the results page. These products are PPC optimized, just like the AdWords ads you can find on Google SERPs.

Just like Google ads, you want to have a tight grouping of keywords, only this time you want them stuffed into your title or description bullet points.

Understanding Amazon’s query parameters

The next bit of Amazon anatomy you should take note of is the query string parameters the platform uses. Having a working knowledge of these query parameters will help get your products in front of consumers who are more likely ready to make a purchase.

If you are familiar with how Google builds URLs based on their set of query string parameters, Amazon’s will be easier to mentally digest.

The top three worth examining are:

  • Field-Keywords: This one is rather straightforward simply the keywords a user types in the search field. For example, “iPhone” or “Samsung 7 Case” would qualify as field-keywords, and Amazon will place them in the results URL.
  • Node: This is a very good query parameter to know, since this is the numeric number relevant to Amazon’s categories. For instance, if you were selling a camera, you would enter the node ID 502394 representing the “Camera, Photo & Video” category.
  • Field-BrandTextBin: This is essentially the brand field, and it can be quite useful for measuring your products with others of the same brand. If you are an iPhone reseller, than iPhone should be in your field-keywords, as well as your field-brandtextbin.

The hierarchy of nodes is also important:

To get more insight on how Amazon builds query parameters for products you can navigate the filter fields a bit. Clicking around on it will show how each category or selection can manipulate the URL.

Ranking on Amazon like a boss

To maximize your Amazon SEO efforts there are a few foundational ranking factors to put into action. Knowing exactly what to focus on when listing your products will get your products in front of more consumers.

Amazon uses data to determine what a user sees after a search query.

This data can be:

  • Product Pricing
  • Search Terms (keywords)
  • Range of Selection (color, models, etc.)
  • Product Availability (stock)
  • Sales History
  • Customer Reviews (star ratings and comments)
  • Click volume

There are two main categories the above factors fall into, Performance Factors and Relevance Factors. Performance factors are interesting, because these are what signals Amazon to rank products based on how much money they will make by doing so. Relevance factors are the relevancy the product has after a user search.

Performance based ranking factors

The following performance factors are vital, because they essentially equate to more profit for Amazon. This compels them to rank products with these optimized factors higher. Simply put, if your product sells well when ranked higher, it will be sure to get more search love.

Conversion rate

Conversions are pretty obvious ranking factors, but one of the most challenging ones to pin down. There are a few tactics you can employ to potentially show Amazon your product is converting well.

Amazon is tricky when it comes to getting a clear picture of conversions. You can see metrics such as units and sessions, but not enough data to really control, or A/B test.

First, find your conversion data in Seller Central by going to Reports > Business Reports > Detailed Page Sales > Traffic.

You will need to see the Unit Session Percentage to get the information needed. The Unit Session Percentage is (units ordered/number of Sessions) per product listing.

To ensure you are getting the most from your conversions in order to improve your rankings, you will need to adjust your buy box percentage. This is especially important if your products are in high competition.

For example, weighting your units ordered per buy box will signal to Amazon that you are converting more.

Optimized images

Images are important performance factors to improve your Amazon rankings. If you are not following their image guidelines, you may be losing a lot of potential customers.

Amazon requests that sellers upload product images 1000 x 1000 pixels or larger. Why? This will make your images compatible with Amazon’s zoom feature, and images optimized for zoom sell better.

Remember, performance factors are all about how you can provide a higher profit for Amazon. If they say zoom increases sales, then your images better be zoomable. This simple tweak to your listings can boost your rankings, and have a snowball effect for increasing conversions, which in turn will also impact your rankings in a positive way.

Product pricing

Price is another major factor in the ranking snowball effect you can leverage for optimal Amazon SEO. There is no secret that price is a major buying decision for consumers. If your product pricing is better or comparable to other sites, chances are, consumers will opt to buy your product via Amazon.

The more sales you receive on Amazon, the more sessions, the more conversions, and better rankings of your products.

A good example of comparable prices across similar products is for refurbished iPhone 6 16GB smartphones.

The market for iPhone 6 mobile devices is so saturated, sellers need to make their products as marketable as possible.

You should do a bit of Amazon product research in your category as well. You want to make sure your product price is also better or comparable to other sellers that will be alongside you in the results pages.

For instance, if you are selling refurbished iPhones $100 more than other sellers, you may find your rankings less desirable. This could happen due to low conversions based on higher pricing, or Amazon concluded your products would not fare well, thus ranking them lower from the get go.

Amazon ranking factors based on relevance

Now that you know how to optimize for the performance factors that Amazon uses to calculate its profit, it’s time to look at relevance factors. Relevance factors are all about search query relevancy, and can be easier to optimize for than performance factors.

6

Product listing title

The title you choose for your product listings are in fact one of the most important relevance factors. It is where you will place your most valuable keywords, as well as a few other description related search terms to help users find your products on page one and above the fold.

A few essentials to include in your title are:

  • Product Brand
  • Description
  • Line of the Product
  • Color
  • Material
  • Size or Dimensions
  • Quantity

Amazon, like Google, does advocate against keyword stuffing, but valuable keywords should be placed in your product title. A good title will influence users to click on your listing. Giving consumers a very clear idea of what the product is will secure a higher CTR.

However, a title jam packed with just keywords may have the opposite effect, causing users to shy away from your listing. Keep it clear and concise for the best results.

The smart watch listing above is an example of what to AVOID.  You want users to BUY your products – so tread carefully that line between keyword stuffing and usability.

Brand

Including the brand of the product you are selling is very important. The brand field for a product listing will be shown and it will be linked to other products by the same brand.

Think about how you would search for your product as an Amazon user. For example, if you want to purchase a new Samsung smartphone, you would type “Samsung” as the first word in the search field.

Some sellers may find themselves in a bit of a conundrum if they have a product with different brand names. The Apple Watch Nike+ would be a good example of this.

You’ll see that this top rated Amazon seller used Nike twice in their product listing:

What exactly would you enter in the brand field for this one? The best place to start would be checking the highest monthly searches for each potential brand keyword. Google Keyword Planner or Moz Keyword Explorer are both good platforms for keyword research. Whichever brand gets the most monthly searches wins!

Bullet points vs. paragraph descriptions

There are a number of ways you can take your Amazon SEO to the next level. Some are slightly challenging, and some, like using bullet points in your product description are super easy.

Using bullet points rather than paragraph descriptions can give your products a rankings boost. Why? People like very concise information that is easy to digest. Amazon knows this and products with bullet points tend to convert better.

Here’s a perfect example of a bullet point product description that converts:

Including keywords, branding, size, color, and any other optimization factors in your bullet points will increase your products rankings. It is a quick tactic to employ, and you may just be surprised by the results.

Rethink your search terms

Relevancy factors on Amazon are all about fulfilling a user’s search query by meeting the expectations of their search terms. This Amazon SEO tactic can get confusing, because it is unlike the search engine optimization and PPC search terms you may be more comfortable with.

For example, let’s say you were selling an unlocked iPhone 6 with charger. You have five search term fields to make the most of, so what would you list?

Your search terms may have looked like this:

  1. Search Term: iPhone 6 16GB
  2. Search Term: Apple iPhone 6 “space grey”
  3. Search Term: “unlocked” 4G iPhone 6
  4. Search Term: iPhone 6 with original charger
  5. Search Term: iPhone 6 smartphone 16GB

Now let’s look at the Amazon guidelines for filling in product search terms:

  • You have 50 characters per search term
  • There is no need to repeat words
  • Commas don’t matter
  • Quotation marks are not good
  • No need to use variations of words
  • Leave out misspelled versions
  • Word order may make a difference
  • Spelling differences and synonyms are good

With the above in mind, here’s what your search terms could look like:

  1. Search Term: iPhone 6 16GB unlocked with original Apple charger
  2. Search Term: space gray 4G international unlock with accessories
  3. Search Term: Apple smartphone 6 generation factory unlocked GSM
  4. Search Term: iPhone 6 dual core mobile device 8mp camera
  5. Search Term: iOS Model: 51-F3A8-A92R 1.4 GHz Cyclone Processor

It may be challenging at first to make the most of your product search terms. However, one easy way to get the information you need to maximize this relevancy factor is to browse a few products on page one of Amazon similar to yours.

Make Amazon SEO part of your product listings

The above tips and tactics are some of the most important factors that you can use to improve your Amazon rankings. In some instances, Amazon SEO is similar to the optimization tactics you would employ for search engines. However, there are a few factors that are quite the opposite.

Make sure you understand how Amazon ranks products in your niche to get a leg up on your competition. Get the most from your conversions, keep your products in stock, and optimize for relevancy factors to ensure you land on page one of results pages.

What Amazon SEO tactics do you have the most success with?

14- Aug2017
Posted By: DPadmin
378 Views

4 Proven Strategies to Get Rank-Boosting Links to Improve Your SEO

Not all links are created equal.

Contextual link building requires the most difficult types of links to get, but they have a strong impact on search rankings.

The truth is that links are still the most important component of the search algorithm. No matter how useful its content may be, a site without links is far less likely to rank highly in organic search results.

Contextual link building — links that are surrounded by text in the body of content — have a higher SEO value than links that appear in the footer or sidebar.

The rules surrounding contextual link building seem to be always changing. Through its Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird updates, Google’s making it even harder for site owners and bloggers to get quality incoming links.

It gets even worse. According to Jayson Demers, “Building links can, in fact, do more harm than good — especially if you do it wrong.”

In order to get the authoritative links that Google respects and sustain your search rankings, you need to concentrate on getting contextual links (i.e., links surrounded by relevant content).

Contextual link building is the quickest way to boost your site’s search performance. Over the past 10 years, I’ve been creating link-worthy content that people frequently cite and share, even when I didn’t ask for it.

These social media shares and off-page search activities led to my blogs attracting over 1 million organic search users per month.

If you want to build the kind of contextual link building that’ll boost your search rankings and traffic, here are four simple ways to do it:

1. Connect with content curators for contextual links.

I give the Google team a lot of credit.

They’ve done a great job leveling the SEO playing ground for both aged and new sites. Anyone with a site that provides useful content and has the right network can now drive organic traffic.

You can speed up the process of getting useful links by connecting with content curators.

HubSpot defines “content curation,” as the process of “finding information relevant to your audience from a variety of sources and sharing it strategically through your communication channels.”

If you can connect with content curators who make these resources available on the web, you’ll increase your chances of getting your links in context.

Content curators use social media and search engines to find content worth curating.

According to Curata, “79 percent of marketers use social media to find content for their curation strategy.”  This is compared to the 63 percent who rely on “company newsletters and subscriptions.”

To connect with content curators, simply follow these steps:

First step: Go to Google and try a search engine query with any of the following strings:

  • Top list blogs + your keyword
  • Best blog posts + your keyword
  • Top link building posts + month

Here’s the result that I got on the search engine, when I searched with the first string:

Second step: From the curated pages that appeared in the search engine results, click on one of them to review the page and its links. When I clicked on the first result, here’s what the page looked like:

Third step: Reach out to the author. Click on the “contact us” tab and connect with the content curator or blog owner.

Email outreach is the quickest way to connect, communicate and build a relationship with content curators and site owners. When I’m looking to get a link, here’s one of the emails that I send to site owners:

When you write emails to content curators, bloggers and influencers — especially those whom you’ve not familiar with — make sure that you do the following:

  • Keep the subject lines in lower case letters: Emails that appear casual, as if you’re sending it to a friend, work best for email outreach.
  • Personalize: To avoid coming off as spammy, use the recipient’s name in the email.
  • Be creative: Write emails that persuade people to click and respond to you. Boring emails won’t trigger a response or probably get read at all.

2. Leverage the guestographic strategy.

Back in 2011, you could use blog commenting to get 200 backlinks and quickly skyrocket your rankings on search engines. But, in today’s algorithm for search engines, the focus is on quality over quantity.

Sometimes, all that you need are five to 10 relevant links, from authoritative sites, to begin seeing results from Google and other search engines.

Through the guestographic strategy, you can get relevant links from those authoritative sites much more easily.

When Brian Dean coined the concept of the guestographic and implemented it, he quickly increased traffic across search engines by 175.59 percent over the previous month.

Now, Brian Dean ranks No. 1 for a high volume keyword — “on-page SEO” — all because he used the guestographic strategy.

Guestographics are a contextual link building service that can truly help you to achieve these goals. To implement the guestographic strategy for yourself, follow these five simple steps:

  1. Design and post a valuable infographic on your site.
  2. Find sites that write about your infographic’s topic.
  3. Show them your infographic.
  4. Offer them a relevant “bribe” or benefit (e.g., a unique blog post).
  5. In return, get contextual links to your site that’ll boost your organic performance on search engines.

Mike Bonadio used the guestographic strategy to create a search engine optimization campaign that generated 1,117 social media shares and 15 percent more organic traffic in two weeks.

Successfully using the guestographic strategy requires two separate, but essential, skillsets:

  • Creating the right infographic
  • Promoting the infographic in the right way

An effective content strategy has to nail both of these tasks. If the content isn’t right, it’ll be hard to promote it effectively. It’s like creating a product that no one wants to buy. How do you promote something useless?

Many people who started new blogs have seen tremendous benefits with incorporating their infographics into guest post pitches. Why not give it a shot yourself?

3. Interview authority site owners — and get interviewed.

Most contextual link building services and techniques require unique content as a prerequisite. But, if you’re not ready to create written content or videos from scratch, you can still tap into other people’s knowledge (OPK).

Interviews are some of the most linked-to content on the web, because they give us a deeply personal look inside what makes others tick. It’s hard for people to be dishonest during an interview.

Expert interviews are powerful ways to acquire rank-boosting backlinks from authoritative sites. But, you have to plan and be strategic about it.

When conducting expert interviews, you don’t have to use video as your medium. Yes, video interviews tend to be the most popular, but don’t let that stop you.

So, if the technical details of a video interview would be overwhelming for you, create text-based interviews. They, too, can deliver great results.

An example of a text-based expert interview is this post published at Fizzle.co. In the interview, Shannon Whitehead and Kristin Glenn, founders of Revolution Apparel, were asked to share how they generated $64,246, which was 321 percent of their KickStarter Campaign goal.

These inspiring startup founders generated highly valuable contextual link building service results from the Fizzle.co blog. Take a look:

Brand mentions and co-citations are also very important to Google, in determining the quality and usefulness of a particular web page.

Their brand name was also mentioned in the blog post, though it wasn’t linked to anywhere.

But, the good news is that both the brand mention and the actual link are surrounded by contextual editorial content. It wasn’t as though the anchor texts were overly optimized or that the keywords were stuffed into the content.

Don’t be scared to reach out to industry experts. In my experience, they’re the easiest people to connect with. The majority of them are fun to talk with and would be happy to help you succeed.

I’ve been interviewed on several blogs that are still trying to pick up more organic traffic, as well as authoritative blogs that I respect. See some of the best of those interviews below:

If it’s impossibly difficult to get a positive response from an influencer, how do you explain the fact that I’ve got over 460,000 search engine results for “interviews + Neil Patel?”

Here’s more proof that getting industry power users to answer a few questions for your expert interviews series can be easier than you may think:

Expert interviews are usually popular because users get to more closely connect with the expert. They also learn fascinating things that they wouldn’t have known otherwise.

Practical experience is something that you can’t get from books or blog posts. But, through interviews, you can share the most accurate practical information with your readers who deeply desire to achieve their goals.

A short time ago, I got interviewed by Mixergy. This interview generated thousands of targeted visitors to my blog. I also earned a contextual backlink that passed strong SEO juice to my pages.

The interview with Joost De Valk, founder of Yoast, on TechWyse, led to a contextual link building service result that linked out to Yoast.

If you want to get the most out of expert interviews, try moving beyond the standard one-expert format. Instead, connect with 20-plus experts in your industry, asking them a simple question that’s relevant to your topic.

When you receive the answers, compile them into a blog post and link out to their blogs.

This will have a multiplier effect on your link building efforts, because those experts you interviewed and linked to will gladly link back to you in their own blog posts.

Mary Fernandez recently shared a valuable blog post, on Huffington Post, where she interviewed 13 seasoned entrepreneurs on a single question: “What’s your best advice for beginners who are starting their online business?”

The expert list post generated 563 links from 11 referring domain names (most of the links are from curated pages and curation sites).

If you’re lost or confused about how to get interviewed by authoritative blogs in your industry, the post below, by Ann Smarty, will guide you: How to Get Interviewed by Popular Blogs (Even If You’re Not a Big Shot)

4. Create newsworthy content.

Finding authoritative sites that’ll link back to your pages can be difficult. But, you can make it easier, by positioning your page. How?

Simply create newsworthy content.

Newsworthy content can be defined as that type of topical, timely content that people are interested in — articles they want to read, share, cite, mention, link to and promote.

You already know that content that gets picked up and republished by media sites such as BBC, CNN and Mashable (to name just a few) generally has some useful or surprising element.

However, the term “newsworthy content,” doesn’t necessarily mean that news-related sites are the only viable sites that will amplify the content’s reach.

You’ve got to understand that authority, niche-specific and generic blogs that publish related content can do the same.

There are bloggers who understand how to create newsworthy content. One of them is Brian Dean. Although he doesn’t publish new content every week, whenever he does, his engagement level is usually out of this world.

In fact, his most recent post generated close to 750 valuable comments from his loyal audience. And there were more than 4,000 social media shares on Twitter and Facebook combined.

And, how many inbound links has the page received so far?

Well over 3,000 links, from 321 referring domains and climbing:

You can find newsworthy content that’s both helpful and interesting in your industry using Buzzsumo. Just input your primary keyword and click on the “Go” button:

Next, you’ll see the most shared content targeting the keyword — in this example, “landing pages.”

You can model these titles and craft even more clickable ones of your own. That way, you’ll attract the right audience to your content, since 8 out of 10 persons read the headline.

Social media networks can help you to give your content the initial boost it requires before the media and other interested users find it.

Begin by creating newsworthy content on Facebook and make your storytelling newsworthy.

Conclusion

A word of caution: Be mindful of your link positioning.

Yes, contextual link building is important, because they boost results on search engines. But, the number of links on a particular content page also matters to Google. Having your links above the fold is always better.

This could be one of the reasons why Google rewards the first link they crawl, assuming several anchor texts were passing link juice to the same page on another site.

There are other things that you can do to get contextual links, such as guest bloggingand mentioning other sites in your content (and letting them know about it).

You should also analyze your competition, in order to take advantage of their linking channels.

At the end of the day, Google makes decisions based on the number of links pointing to your pages and the circumstances surrounding such links.

Ultimately, it’s all about how users interact with your site. Google collects user data on your site and makes further ranking decisions to determine where your content pages should be ranked in the organic results of search engines.

Source: 4 Proven Strategies to Get Rank-Boosting Links to Improve Your SEO

11- Aug2017
Posted By: DPadmin
170 Views

How to Get Your Top Competitor’s Keyword Structure

Stop spending hours manually researching keywords. Check out this simple and effective automated solution to help you create a winning keyword structure.

Every successful online business begins with a strong SEO campaign. Every strong SEO campaign begins with a winning keyword structure.

SEO experts know that building a working keyword structure is always a challenge.

First, you search for keyword ideas. With automated tools and apps, proven methods, guides, and recommendations, keyword research is now a less tedious task than it was in the past.

After mastering keyword research, you need to smartly spread your collected keywords across your webpages. This part can be tricky. Even powerful keywords don’t work for you if you put them in the wrong place. SEOs spend tons of time testing and researching keyword behavior.

Finally, comes the testing phase. By trial and error, you’ll get a working keyword structure.

This takes too long.

What if you could get a tested, proven, and crystallized keyword structure before adding it to your website?

Luckily, this is possible.

Your competitors have already managed to build a keyword structure and reach the top of the search results. Nothing is stopping you from doing the same! Your SEO fate rests entirely in your hands.

Why would you spend hours manually researching their keyword structure when you could simply use an effective automated solution that turns this job into a piece of cake?

Meet the free Topvisor grouping tool.

How Does Topvisor Keyword Grouper Work?

Keyword grouping by page relevance spreads keywords across website pages exactly as they rank and display in the applied search engine and location. The algorithm is based on the relevant pages.

A relevant page is a page of a target website that appears in the search results for a specific keyword. The keyword grouper groups out a keyword pool by matching keywords with the relevant pages. As the result, you get a comprehensive keyword structure based on page relevance.

1. Getting Started with the Topvisor Platform

Topvisor

Topvisor is a multi-feature platform that includes much more than just a keyword grouper. To get started, create your first project. Enter a competitor’s URL as a project URL.

2. Keyword Research

Keyword research

If you don’t have a pool of keywords already, it’s high time you get it. You can use your favorite tools or try paid and free Topvisor tools. On the Keywords page, you may try Keyword research tool, Keyword suggestions tool, or a free Magnet tool to pool keyword ideas.

It’s highly recommended to do a bit of a manual research. Look through competitor’s web pages, analyzing text and titles. It can take some time, but it’s worth it.

3. Filter by Search Volume

Filter by search volume

One of the most efficient ways to check if a keyword will work for your website is to get its search volume. You can run a Search Volume tool on the Keywords page. In a couple of minutes, the tool will pull data for you.

Leave only powerful keywords. Move weak keywords to Trash.

4. Track Keyword Rankings

 Track keyword rankings

To provide you with a comprehensive keyword structure, Topvisor keyword grouper needs a list of relevant pages. To get them, move to the Keywords dynamics page and run an instant keyword check.

Topvisor Rank Tracker will match keywords with the competitor’s website relevant pages that show up in the search results and pull a rank for each page. It takes 5 minutes or less.

If a website doesn’t show in the search results or shows beyond the set tracking depth, the tool won’t be able to match a relevant page to a keyword. The maximum Google rank tracking depth in Topvisor is 1,000.

5. Grouping Keywords by Relevance

Grouping keywords by relevance

This is where the magic happens.

Get back to the Keywords page and run the Keyword Grouper. The tool will move the keywords that have common relevant URLs into separate groups. The process is instant. It takes a couple of seconds before you get your keyword structure.

Keywords that don’t have a matching relevant URL will be moved into a separate group named ‘No relevant URL’. Keywords excluded from the ranking report on the previous step are moved to the ‘Not tracked’ group.

6. Adopting Keyword Structure

Adopting keyword structure

With the help of keyword tools, you can get a complete keyword structure and save a lot of time. Analyze the results you received and decide which keywords are the best for your business.

Remember that keywords work well only in high-quality content. Make sure that your website is user friendly and provides practical information for your clients.

Summary

By trusting proven automated algorithms you can save both money and time.

What’s more, tools exclude a chance of human mistake. This means that you won’t have to spend hours testing your results.

The best way to get a perfect working keyword structure is to combine algorithms with your own expertise and creativity.

Source: How to Get Your Top Competitor’s Keyword Structure

29- Jun2017
Posted By: DPadmin
190 Views

How to Use Semantic SEO for Higher Rankings

How to Use Semantic SEO for Higher Rankings

How to Use Semantic SEO for Higher Rankings

Every year SEO gets more difficult.

More content is fighting for valuable real estate in the organic search results.

How can your search listing stand out?

By focusing on semantic SEO.

What is Semantic SEO?

Semantic SEO is the process of building more meaning into the words you use in your content.

This means optimizing for the true intent of your users, not just answering a simple query. It means you answer the first question and then immediately answer the second, third, fourth, or fifth question right after that.

Doing so gives more depth to your content and provides more value. Google loves to send searchers to pages where they will find exactly what they’re looking for.

What does semantic SEO really translate to?

  • More chances to obtain a variety of keyword rankings.
  • An opportunity to rank for a longer period of time.

Even though keyword rankings might not be sustainable over a long period of time, traffic can be.

In fact, Google’s algorithm actively tells us what they are looking for when trying to match results to queries.

All we have to do is look at the information Google gives freely to us.

We can use this information to create and deliver more relevant content.

How to Write Content Using Semantic SEO

Semantic SEO involves figuring out the deeper meaning of why someone is searching for content and strategically placing those elements within your content piece.

You can figure out these building blocks to create your content using hints Google provides within the SERPs.

Google’s “related to search” and the “people also ask” sections are windows of opportunity.

The deeper meaning of queries will help position your site to sustain the fluctuations of organic search.

Ask yourself: Once the user learns from their query being answered, what additional questions will arise from this knowledge and continue to answer the new queries in one post?

The search algorithm is also trying to anticipate the next query, so thinking like the search engine will help you understand what you have to do.

Start With Traditional Methods of Keyword Research

You can use any keyword research tool you’re comfortable with. I use Google’s Keyword Planner Tool.

Pick a topic relevant to your business or website and build from there.

Example: A plumber offers residential plumbing services. A big part of his business includes installing or servicing pipes in new and old homes. So, you’ll want to focus a post on this concept of piping.

One highly valuable broad term is “plumbing pipes”. Let’s start building from there.

My keyword research process looks like this:

  • Broad term: plumbing pipes
  • Expanded term: residential plumbing pipes (service offered)

Once you decide to build your content around the topic of residential plumbing pipes, you then have to figure out how to construct the content piece, keeping semantic SEO in mind.

  • What type of problem are you trying to address?
  • How are you going to solve that problem with your content?
  • Once you solve this problem, how do you address the additional problems that the user might have after learning the first answer?

How to Extract Semantic Information From Google

Start by searching for [residential plumbing pipe] on Google.

What do you see?

Use the information on Google’s SERPs to create the building blocks of a post.

Start from the bottom by using the “searches related to” section.

There are a handful of ideas here you can use to construct the full content piece:

related searches

Based on this information, you can make some assumptions about the intent of your customers. They want to know:

  • What a PEX plumbing pipe is.
  • What plumbing pipe types are out there and their uses.
  • Whether new homes need different pipes. What about older homes?
  • About the material.
  • Which pipes are best for their water supply.

When you put all these assumptions together, they create the skeleton for an informative and high-value piece of content.

Now you just need to create a catchy headline then include these assumptions as blocks within the content piece itself.

Semantic SEO Helps You Earn Featured Snippets

Using the SERPs to create content is valuable because it gives you direction.

It can even help you rank above Position 1.

Featured snippets aren’t new to SERPs and neither is the “People also ask” section. These sections are interesting because they are part of the new concept of “position zero”.

While it is always amazing to get the top position in organic search, now there’s ample opportunity to appear before number one.

 

SERPS for residential plumbing pipes

In the example above, the featured snippet is above the top organic search result. It’s accompanied by an image and has much larger text.

A user might not even bother to scroll down far enough to see the “number one” ranking.

The Value of Semantic SEO

To paint an even clearer picture, let’s look back at what I said about using the SERPs to your advantage when creating content.

When you click on the blue links within the field of related searches, they will generate a completely different search results page.

Clicking on [plumbing pipe types and uses] within the related searches box to be sent to the new SERP.

Query: plumbing pipe types and uses

You could also click on the query [best pipe material for drinking water supply] for a new SERP.

Query: best pipe material for drinking water supply

Three different search queries. Three different pages rank first in organic search results.

But each SERP retains the same rich answer.

Why?

Because the page that appears in the featured snippet has depth.

That depth addresses different layers of popular related search queries.

The value here is obvious:

The post can afford to lose keyword rankings for one of these search queries and still sustain a good amount of its organic traffic in the long run.

We can’t control whether our content ranks for our targeted keyword, but we can strategize to attack the SERPs with a series of different keyword targets.

The post was intended to rank for the query [plumbing pipes]. It has since lost its ability to do so within organic search results. But the post has so much depth that it still retains its traffic and continues to grow over time.

Conclusion

Offering value, building relevancy, and thinking about the new problems your customers will face is what will separate your post from all the other ones over a longer period of time.

Be the most relevant answer.

Source: How to Use Semantic SEO for Higher Rankings

29- Jun2017
Posted By: DPadmin
138 Views

SEO Best Practices For Every Page On Your Site

 

teachers-blackboardIn terms of getting the best search rankings, you can broadly break your SEO efforts into two areas: site-wide optimisation and optimising individual pages. Today we’re going to focus on the second of these two subjects, looking at how to maximise the search ranking of every page you publish.

By following the steps in this guide, the individual pages on your site will earn more exposure, generate a higher volume of leads and contribute to better rankings across the rest of your site.

The challenge of creating ‘quality’ content

The phrase “quality content” is used so much these days that it’s lost all meaning. So, to be clear, for your content to be considered quality by search engines and people it must be two things: valuable and discoverable.

Valuable content provides information people actually need and discoverable content is easily accessible when people need it most. Hitting this sweet spot of providing the right information at the crucial moment is a real challenge but one we need to overcome in the age of micro-moment marketing.

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/m-m.png

Think with Google: micro moments best practices
Source: Think with Google

The key is to understand the consumer journey of your target audiences and the role each of your pages plays along the way. This tells you the kind of information users need from each page and the kind of conversion goal you should be targeting.

10 steps to follow

Your next big challenge is creating unique content on every page you publish, which can be particularly difficult for services pages. When you have five, ten or any number of services to promote, how do you make every page unique and valuable?

Follow these SEO best practices steps to get you started:

  1. Introduce the service
  2. Differentiate from similar services (eg: SEO vs PPC)
  3. Make the unique benefits and selling points of each service clear
  4. Identify questions users will have and provide answers
  5. Explain which kind of clients use this service and what you’ve done for them
  6. Consider testimonials, case studies and social proof specific to this service
  7. Use visual content to reinforce your message
  8. Have a prominent, compelling call-to-action
  9. Provide access to further information for users who aren’t ready to commit yet
  10. Direct users to another service page if this isn’t the one that meets their needs

Try to be as specific as possible with each of your service pages, otherwise you’ll find they all end up being very similar. You need to make it perfectly clear why this is the service your visitors need and, if it isn’t, make it obvious where they should go next.

Multimedia ranking factors

It’s widely accepted that Google and other search engines take multimedia content into consideration when ranking pages. Humans are visually stimulated creatures and search engines know images, video and other visuals are the perfect way to spice up a page full of text.

Strong visual content is also more engaging than text, which can reduce indirect ranking factors like bounce rate, time on page, number of pages visited, etc.

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/b2c-content-priorities.png

Top Priorities fir B2C Content Creators

Source: Content Marketing Institute

So visuals are important to people and search engines alike, but the same old issue of quality/value comes into play. A bunch of naff stock images aren’t going to engage people and reduce those indirect ranking factors.

Aside from this you also need to optimise your visual content so search engines can recognise them and also reduce the negative impact on performance. This starts by using the right format for images so make sure you understand the difference between JPEG, PNG and other images file types.

Hopefully, you’re well aware by now that Flash is a no-no and HTML5 video is the way to go. Here are some other things to consider:

  • Relevance is still important for videos
  • Engagement metrics like views, comments, shares, etc. have an impact
  • Metadata tells search engines what your video is about
  • Keywords are believed to also have an impact

With video content there’s always the question of hosting the video on your site or embedding via YouTube. While embedding YouTube videos can by boost engagement metrics (views, shares, etc.) you could be taking ranking points away from your page by hosting your video elsewhere. So, in the case of service pages, it’s probably best to create highly specific videos and host them on that service page only. This way all the SEO points go to that page and nowhere else.

In term of performance, speed is your biggest enemy with visual content. Optimise your images and videos to reduce file sizes as much as you can without hurting quality too much. Also think about content delivery networks (CDNs), web caching and optimise your code for the best possible speed.

Also, don’t underestimate the importance of your hosting provider/package when it comes to speed and performance.

Make your visual content discoverable

As mentioned earlier, even the best content is useless until search engines and people are able to find it at the key moment. This is more challenging with visual content because search engines can’t watch videos or see infographics, which means you need to give them a helping hand.

  • Avoid loading content with AJAX (Google still has trouble crawling this)
  • Create descriptive descriptions with relevant keywords
  • Optimise your titles and meta descriptions where possible (not every image can have a title, of course)
  • Consider transcriptions for your video content
  • Use descriptive captions
  • Avoid infographics with no written content (similar to transcriptions)

The key is to provide context with your visuals so search engines can understand the purpose they serve to users.

Write for users, optimise for search engines

We’ve already spoken about creating content that meets user needs, answers their questions and provides value. This is your priority for every page you publish. Write for users first and then optimise for search engines – once again, to make your pages discoverable and prove their relevance.

Here are the SEO essentials for on-page optimisation:

  • Descriptive titles in H1 tags, including your target keyword
  • Descriptive page URL with keyword included
  • Correct formatting with subheadings (in H2, H3 tags, etc.) including keywords if they’re relevant/useful
  • Meta data, Schema and rich snippets where relevant
  • Inbound and outbound links to/from other relevant pages on your site (internal linking)
  • Optimised visuals for performance and discoverability
  • Mobile optimisation
  • Fast loading times

There are a few things on that list that we haven’t covered in-depth yet so let’s go into some more detail about meta data, URLs and the remaining on-page essentials.

Writing effective meta data

Meta data is a subject that causes a lot of confusion because it has little-to-no impact on how search engines rank your pages. However, users still see much of this information on results pages, meaning it has a direct impact on how many people click-through to your site.

Optimising your title tags

The title tags determine what users see as the blue headline text of your search results. Here’s an example of what this looks like on a listing for Search Engine Watch:

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/title-tags-sew.jpg

Google search result with title tag highlightedFor this page the HTML title will look like this:

<title>Title Tags Guide | Good & Bad Examples | Search Engine Watch</title>

This is a common formula for optimising title tags: Keyword #1 | Keyword #2 | Brand name. However, this approach is outdated now because it doesn’t provide the most descriptive title for users trying to find the most relevant result to their query.

Here are some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Be descriptive: Your priority with title tags is to accurately describe the content users will see on the other side. You want the highest number of clicks vs the lowest possible bounce rate – and this means compelling but accurate title tags.
  • Aim for queries, not keywords: Placing keywords in your title tags won’t help you rank higher but matching a user’s search query will tell them your page has what they’re looking for.
  • Include your brand name: Users are more likely to click results from brands they recognise so it’s still good practice to include your brand name in title tags.
  • Be mindful of length: Search engines tend to give you 50-60 characters (or 512 pixels more specifically) and everything after this will be cut off. Ideally, you want your full title to be visible but don’t obsess over this. Be mindful of length but focus on creating titles that will generate the most clicks.

Meta descriptions

Once again, meta descriptions have no impact on where you rank but they give users vital information about what your page contains. Much like your page titles, these only appear in search results, not your actual pages. Their role is simply to give users more information about what they can expect to gain from clicking on your listing.

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/meta-desc-sew.jpg

Google search result with meta description highlightedIn the listing above, Search Engine Watch aims to get people clicking by matching the questions they have in mind within their meta description. It may not be the most readable of descriptions but it provides a lot of information about what users can expect to find on the page. They’ve also squeezed a number of potential queries into that description, which will show up in bold when users search for them.

This approach won’t be ideal for all meta descriptions but it’s a good example of the things you need to consider when creating your own:

  • Be descriptive
  • Include search queries
  • Make it readable
  • Get users excited about clicking through
  • Focus on the value your page has to offer
  • Aim for a maximum of 150-160 characters

Think of meta descriptions as a mini sales pitch about why people should click through to your site. Every page you create should have a clear, concise goal and this where you get to put this message across to searchers in a short sentence or two.

Create amazing URLs

The final key element in our trio of meta data essentials is your page URLs. The reason URLs were created in the first place was to provide users with a descriptive version of web addresses – otherwise we’d be typing in a bunch of IP addresses to access everything online.

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/meta-url-sew.jpg

Google search result with URL highlightedThis is important because it basically tells you everything you need to know about URLs. Like the rest of your meta data, they should be descriptive for users – and this is something many brands have forgotten over the years.

Generally speaking, the shorter and more descriptive your URLs are, the better experience they provide for users. Here are some things to consider:

  • Cut out unnecessary words: Stay true to your page titles and/or headings with URLs but feel free to cut out unnecessary words.
  • Forget punctuation: There’s no place for question marks, commas or any other punctuation in URLs.
  • Stop words can be ok: Stop words (the, and, or, when, how, etc.) are generally considered unnecessary but it’s fine to use them if you think they make your URL more meaningful.
  • Use hyphens: Separate words in your URLs with hyphens (“-”) as these are considered more readable. Avoid underscores (“_”), spaces and any other special characters to separate words.
  • Target search queries: This one keeps coming up with every piece of meta data we look at – and for good reason.
  • Avoid dynamic parameters: These make URLs incredibly long and unreadable.

That last point is a tricky one, because many brands want to use dynamic parameters to track user journeys across their websites. The problem is they make a real mess of URLs and it’s not only search engine results pages where this can cause problems. Users are also left with a mess when they try to bookmark your page or if they try to remember the URL of your site/specific page.

Bringing it all together

A few years ago, the idea that content marketing was the new SEO became popular in the industry. This was largely due to Google’s Hummingbird update that put less emphasis on keywords and more on matching context between search queries and content. And, while it’s true content is the most important part of your SEO strategy, ignoring the more technical side of optimising your pages is a mistake – especially with loading times and other performance factors becoming increasingly influential in search rankings.

As businesses invest more time and money into creating content it would be a shame if your efforts fall short because your pages aren’t as discoverable as they could be. So pay attention to the smaller aspects of on-page optimisation best practices and give your content the best opportunity to make things happen.

Source: SEO Best Practices For Every Page On Your Site

15- Jun2017
Posted By: DPadmin
108 Views

Be a mad scientist to be more successful in local SEO

With my recaps of the Local SEO sessions at SMX West last month, we had a bit of a break from Greg’s Soapbox. Never fear, it’s back in full force this month!

I’ve been lucky enough to have the opportunity to attend several large conferences over the last few months, and I have been a part of many discussions about what really works for local SEO. It seems that most people fall into one of two camps, and there’s a growing debate between the two.

On one side, we have people who hold the annual Local Search Ranking Factors (LSRF) survey, now run by Darren Shaw at Whitespark, as gospel. On the other, you have the anti-LSRF group, who think that the LSRF study is opinion-based poppycock (yes, someone actually called it “poppycock”). This side favors the insights gleaned from Andrew Shotland and Dan Leibson’s massive study of local ranking factors, in which they attempted to reverse-engineer Google’s local algorithm.

In many cases, but not all, the results of the study align with those of the survey — but in some cases, there’s a huge difference.

As I sat through these many conversations and debates over the last few months, I noticed something unsettling. Nearly every person I talked to on either “side” of the question seemed to fall into that camp by blind faith. They believed one way or the other because that’s the side of the fence they were “raised on,” so to speak.

Forget what anyone says — test it for yourself!

Maybe I’m just wearing my (officially licensed and available for sale) Greg’s Soapbox Tinfoil Hat, but in my entire career as an SEO, I’ve never simply accepted anything as the truth. I’ve always thought of myself as a bit of a mad scientist, conducting crazy experiments to see what really worked… and I’m incredibly surprised that so many people don’t look at things the same way!

It’s insane to read a blog post or two, or see a dynamic speaker at a conference, or even listen to your boss and trust that you’re hearing the absolute best truth. We all know there are hundreds of factors that influence the relevancy of a site, and being local SEOs, we know that Google treats different business types and even different search queries in vastly different ways.

Don’t get me wrong — I’m not knocking the Local Search Ranking Factors study. I’ve been a participant for years, and I firmly believe it’s an amazing tool for anyone in the industry. But I also think that Shotland and Leibson have the right idea: you simply must test things for yourself to be sure that things really work the way you expect them to.

To geo-optimize or not to geo-optimize?

The perfect example is geo-optimization. Most old-school local SEOs will tell you exactly how to optimize a page for a geo term, inserting it in the title tag, H1, content, alt text, URL and so on. On the flip side, the correlations in Shotland and Leibson’s study show that geo-optimization doesn’t really do anything. So who’s right?

I’m on Greg’s Soapbox, so I’m right. Here’s the answer: none of us is right.

In some cases, geo-optimization might not do squat for a website. If it’s a competitive vertical, and every site has geo-optimized out the wazoo, then of course it won’t work. It’s exactly the same issue I discussed in my post last fall about unique content no longer being important because everyone is unique.

In other verticals that might be a bit behind or a bit less competitive, geo-optimization can be a huge game-changer. If you’re working on a site, and it’s the only one in the local market that’s well-optimized for that city, then boom — you win!

The issue is this: neither the LSRF results or Shotland and Leibson’s test will tell you what’s right for your own site or your clients’ sites. You’re going to have to test things for yourself to find out what really matters.

The Local Search Ranking Factors study is incredibly valuable because it points you in what’s probably a good direction. The 40 or so participants in the study are at the absolute top of the local SEO game, and I know for a fact that every single one of them is always testing. It’s a good bet that if the LSRF study points you in a direction, it’s a smart choice to follow and test that factor for yourself.

Same thing with Shotland and Leibson’s test — there’s a good chance their data is pure gold as well, and it should give you a starting point for your own tests.

Regardless of which camp you fall into, don’t trust anything on blind faith. Become a mad scientist and test things for yourself — you’ll be a better SEO, and you’ll get much better results for your clients.

Source: http://searchengineland.com/mad-scientist-successful-local-seo-273241