16- May2018
Posted By: DPadmin
10 Views

7 Lessons Every SEO Practitioner Needs To Learn

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a fairly forgiving online marketing discipline. It’s a long-term strategy, so if you make one mistake, you’ll usually have plenty of time to correct it.

On top of that, your search rankings are the sum total of hundreds of variables, so you might be able to safely miss one or two without jeopardizing the effectiveness of your campaign.

However, there are some important lessons every SEO practitioner must learn early on.

1. Don’t try to outsmart Google.

First, understand that you’re never going to outsmart Google. SEO is about understanding Google’s algorithm and working within it to provide better content for your visitors and, hopefully, earn higher organic search rankings in the process. If you try to find loopholes in that algorithm, or rely on “black hat” tactics to inch your way up the rankings, it’s only going to work against you in the long run.

 Too many newcomers believe they can get away with tactics like spamming links or stuffing keywords, but it never works for long; Google’s quality indicators have always been good, and they keep getting better, which means even if you get away with a tactic now, you probably won’t get away with it later – and you may find your website with an algorithmic or manual ranking penaltythat can be exceptionally difficult to recover from.

2. The same strategy won’t work for everyone.

Let’s say you’re working with a single client, and you have everything in order. You’ve picked the right keywords, you’ve developed great content, and you’ve built great links to see fast growth. Now you acquire a new client, with a different brand and a different audience. Do you use the same strategy? 

It’s tempting for SEO newcomers to copy and paste the same approach, but this is inadvisable; your clients (or employers) will have different goals with their SEO campaigns, different competitors, keywords, and other variables, and may respond to different variables in strikingly different ways. Learn from your past strategies, and use elements from them in your new campaigns, but avoid trying to replicate any strategy in its entirety.

3. You have to change how you talk about SEO.

The more familiar you become with SEO, the deeper your technical knowledge will become. You’ll have an internal dialogue (or a dialogue with your peers) that freely uses terms like “robots.txt” or “meta data” like everyone knows what you’re talking about. But when you report your results to a client, or a boss who doesn’t understand the technical side, you’ll have to learn to talk about these technical factors in a way that makes sense to a non-SEO-expert.

Spend some time preparing to talk in this other level of language.

4. People don’t always search the way you expect.

When you start brainstorming keyword ideas, it’s a good idea to put yourself in the mind of the average searcher, imagining what words and phrases they might use to find a brand like yours. You may also use keyword research data to indicate which keywords are potentially most valuable for your brand. These are sound strategies, helping you both quantitatively and qualitatively predict how your users might search in the future.

But you should know that users don’t always search the way you’d expect them to; prepare to be surprised, and to adjust your campaign as you learn what your users are really searching for.

5. Only trust what you can measure.

You may think you have an amazing piece of written content, but how much traffic is it attracting? How many comments has it encouraged? You may think you’ve built a high-quality link, but how is it impacting your domain authority? How much referral traffic are you getting from it?

Even though you might feel like you’re developing an instinct for how campaigns develop (especially in the later stages of your career), it’s better to only trust what you can objectively measure.

6. Audit and reevaluate everything periodically.

Just because a strategy worked for you last year doesn’t mean it will this year. Things change too quickly, from the nature of the algorithm that drives how Google search works to the consumer preferences that drive search patterns. Accordingly, you’ll need to regularly reevaluate your tactics, determining whether they’re still worthwhile and finding opportunities to improve. I recommend doing a full sweep of your approach annually.

Monthly check-ins, when you report on results, are also a good idea, to spot high-level issues or successes in time to respond quickly to them.

7. Reading and talking is the only way to stay up-to-date in this fast-moving industry.

Remember what I said about things always changing? Early in your career, you’ll learn that to stay relevant, you need to plug yourself into the community. You’ll need to read relevant publications, and talk to other people like you on a regular basis if you want to stay relevant and up-to-date with the latest strategies. If nothing else, you’ll get helpful tips—and proactive words of warning if you’re taking the wrong approach.

 Are you familiar with these SEO principles? Good. You’re going to need them if you want to be successful. Though you’ll have many years to correct your behavior and accumulate assets like content and links to improve your campaign, if your underlying SEO philosophies are out of order, you may never achieve your true potential as an SEO ninja.

Source: 7 Lessons Every SEO Practitioner Needs To Learn

16- May2018
Posted By: DPadmin
9 Views

3 essential techniques for SEO success

In today’s rapidly changing digital world, SEO techniques can change with the direction of the wind. Tricks that won you a front-page position two years ago may be useless now.

In order to drive a digital marketing campaign to success, it is vital to understand the importance of SEO. When used properly, SEO facilitates in increasing traffic to your site, engagements, as well as conversions.

Key metrics to assess your content marketing success

Here are three SEO techniques that you must master this year to ensure your content gets seen.

High-quality content is key

Though the marketing buzzphrase “content is king” often leads to a wave of eye-rolls, when it comes to SEA the quality of your content really is vital.

When creating your content, it is important to think like Google. With the search engine goliath constantly making efforts to enhance their search results, you must ensure you’re providing searchers with good quality, informative, interesting, and entertaining content.

Why not experiment with less “traditional” content such as video blogs. Source: Shutterstock

Google’s ranking algorithm has shifted towards user intent, so you must ask yourself- does your content fulfill the reader’s needs, or leave them having to look elsewhere?

Good quality content goes beyond a blog post. Less “traditional” content such as videos, infographics, images, and more have been shown to engage readers at a far higher level and is more shareable. This shareability factor is also a powerful way to build backlinks.

Tip: In order to provide consumers with what they really want, try finding out where your audience are on social media via groups and hashtags, and from this join the conversation. Ask for suggestions about topics to talk about. Additionally, creating a blog post on “frequently asked questions” will increase your SEO by showing Google that you are answering the questions of consumers.

The importance of link building

Link building is the process of acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own and is a technique that you should perfect in order to improve your SEO.

Previously, backlinks were mainly about quantity, but now the effectiveness of backlinks is about the quality of the content which they lead to.

The theory behind this technique is that when another website links to yours, they are basically saying that it is a good resource. This is a strong signal of the quality of a page and is much like making a recommendation to a good restaurant.A few high-quality backlinks will do well in helping your website climb the SEO rank.

Tips: Reach out to bloggers in your industry to link back to your content, for instance, by providing them with infographics, images, etc. Also, ensure you include strong internal links, report broken links, produce high-quality content. This will all help to increase the visibility of your site and increase traffic.

Make your content mobile-friendly

Today, more searches are conducted on mobile devices rather than from desktop. As a result, it is vital to ensure your SEO targets mobile platforms as well in order to reach success.

With more people making searches on mobile, it is vital your content is optimized for this. Source: Shutterstock

A responsive design is essential in order to attract and retain visitors to your site who are so reliant on mobile to find information. It’s also integral to the user experience you provide.

Not getting it right on the mobile screen isn’t an option, especially for businesses that deal with consumers directly. How’ll they impulse shop if you make them wait to surf through your site?

Tip: Ensuring that your mobile-website is speedy, works on all mobile devices, has key information easy to access, and offers a variety of content formats is all vital to increase your SEO ranking.

Source: 3 essential techniques for SEO success – TechHQ

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

01- Mar2018
Posted By: DPadmin
17 Views

Why PPC? – The Advantages of Pay-Per-Click Marketing Explained

Pay-per-click is a term that all Marketers are used to hearing and while it’s widely accepted as a great way to promote your business, how much do we actually know about it? The world of online marketing can get a little overwhelming, that’s why, we’re asking what are the advantages of a pay-per-click campaign and when is it beneficial to use one?

Instant responses 

PPC advertising will deliver immediate results. In fact, the minute your campaign is approved your ads can be viewed by millions of web users. The capacity to launch a campaign quickly and ensuring it reaches your market instantly makes PPC ideal for product launches, seasonal promotions and event-focused marketing.

Take advantage of business opportunities

As it is so quick and easy to launch a PPC campaign you can really use them to your businesses advantage. Is your competitor’s website down? Have they been experiencing some bad press? No problem, you can have your campaign set up in a matter of minutes and their customers may just come running to you. When you’re in a race against time the efficiency and immediacy of PPC can really be on your side.

Track the success

Everything about pay-per-click is measurable, from the amount that you’re paying to the number of hits your website receives. This makes it a useful tool for testing different campaigns, strategies or landing pages allowing you to evaluate which are the most responsive and the best option for your business. PPC isn’t just a way to drive traffic to your site, but a way to understand exactly what your customers are looking for. It’s also very handy to have a tight budget as pay-per-click can get a little pricey when your post proves popular. The more clicks, the more it costs. By measuring the CTR you can stop the campaign before it gets too expensive.

Ensures exposure and brand recognition

PPC allows you to target specific keywords related to your industry which will help to build your brand image and establish yourself as an industry leader. This will also increase your exposure, as PPC ads are usually posted at the top of search engine results pages (depending on how much you pay) which can immediately boost the traffic of your website. On average, 41% of all clicks go to the top 3 paid ads on the search results page, if you aren’t using PPC then you’re losing those clicks to competitors that are. If you’re determined to maximise your click-share of searches for keywords relevant to your business, PPC is essential.

Highly targeted website traffic

Reaching the right audience can always be difficult, yet PPC allows you to target very specific groups. You can also choose when these ads appear which really allows you to segment your market, making sure you’re only reaching the people that will benefit your business. And being picky clearly pays off, PPC visitors are 50% more likely to purchase something than organic visitors.

Costs

Initially with PPC you only need to make a small investment, one of the biggest advantages of using a pay-per-click campaign is that there can be no charge until someone clicks on your ad. You decide how much you pay for each campaign making it suitable for all budgets, although the more you pay the greater your potential results.

You don’t have to be SEO reliant

If you aren’t the savviest in terms of SEO then pay-per-click is perfect for you. Although SEO is essential for your brand’s long-term success, this method will allow you to make profitable short-term campaigns at the touch of a button. Similarly, if your website isn’t designed for SEO you can generate traffic through PPC and won’t have to worry about meeting Google’s content-heavy criteria.

Read more at https://www.business2community.com/marketing/ppc-advantages-pay-per-click-marketing-explained-01959416

Source: Why PPC? – The Advantages of Pay-Per-Click Marketing Explained

11- Oct2017
Posted By: DPadmin
97 Views

The ever-increasing importance of usability and trust in link building

Sometimes link builders identifying promising sites think only in terms of metrics. Columnist Julie Joyce explains why usability has become one the most important things to consider.

Just the other day I was showing a cool site that I’d just found to a (very intelligent and internet-savvy) friend, and he quickly became confused due to the ad placements on the site. The ads were shown on the top of the page below a nav bar, and they looked like categories for the site. So he clicked on them.

Then there was the search bar. Blacked out completely, you couldn’t see what you were typing into it, and it gave no error messages when you just hit enter. The 404 page had a broken image on it. One of the social buttons went to the wrong account.

And then I found the dreaded page with the lovely Lorem Ipsum dummy text still on it.

Bottom line: I didn’t really love the site so much anymore. It ranked well (that’s how I found it), but I didn’t trust it.

Ask yourself: Would you click on this link?

When I’m building links, I always ask myself if I’d want that link to my site if I were the client myself. I do get a bit irritated when clients complain about really nitpicky stuff, but if I were the client and my link-building company got a link on this site, I’d be super-irritated.

It’s not enough to rank well. I mean, it’s fantastic when you do rank well, of course, but everyone knows a top ranking is no guarantee that you’ll gain a new sale or a new email subscriber or whatever else you view as a positive conversion. With so much spam making its way into the top SERPs, users are finding out that they really can’t trust the rankings the way they used to.

So, while it’s really nice that you get a link on a site that ranks well and has some good metrics, if you depend on that link for converting traffic, the linking site’s usability can’t be ignored any more than yours can. Why have a link on a site that someone doesn’t trust?

I approve every single link that we build in my agency, and the main reason I’m turning down sites these days is for something related to usability. They have the metrics and look good on the screen, but something’s off. The page doesn’t load correctly until you try it three times, or it takes 30 seconds. The site is so covered up with ads you can’t tell what’s an ad and what’s the actual content. There are a gazillion pages that throw 404s.

bad usabilityAdd all of this to the usual things we look for, and you’ll see that finding a great linking partner just gets harder and harder.

What should you check?

Generally speaking, I encourage our team to do an initial quick check on a few things to see if a site is even worth digging into. We do look at metrics like Domain and Page Authority (at our clients’ requests) and we check things like the country that is sending the most traffic to the site. If we don’t see any big red flags (like 90 percent of the traffic is from Hungary and it’s a US blog), then we dig deeper.

Is the content any good? My goodness, you would be amazed at all the crappy content on the web, and on highly ranking sites. I don’t mean that it’s just not my thing. I mean that it’s written with incorrect grammar and rampant typos, and there’s no real structure to it. I recently refused to order some clothes that my daughter wanted from a site where it looked like they had gotten a 4-year-old to write their “About Us” page. They didn’t list a phone number. The descriptions of some of the items we looked at seemed to be whatever happened to come with their terrible system. I don’t want to buy an item where there’s no image but there is a line reading “insert photo of tan shirt here.”

Oh, and I love to check for a Viagra or Cialis hack. Yes, those are still all over the place! Do a “cheap online order viagra” search in Google and you’ll see.

viagra hackWe can’t forget mobile, either, and that’s only getting more important. You know when you’re on a smartphone and you go to a site that looks like a tiny version of its regular self? Why lose the chance for a mobile conversion by placing a link on a page that won’t even be seen by users on a smartphone? By the way, I like Mobi to check this in a variety of formats, but there are various tools available.

mobile check

Stop forgetting users with visual difficulties

Years ago I had a blind user show me how he navigated the web. Something I wrote then is something that I STILL see today, and it drives me nuts:

If [they] are reading a webpage that has links on it that aren’t coded to look like links which are easily recognizable as gateways to another page or site, they obviously aren’t going to find them and click. Of course, neither am I — most likely, neither are you, even if your vision is 20/20.

Sometimes webmasters (and maybe the people requesting the links) are so intent on staying “safe” that they make links blend in as if they weren’t links. It’s awful. We sometimes get links for clients and have to request that the links LOOK LIKE LINKS. How stupid is that? Why in the world would you not want your link to be clicked on? If I see a site doing this, I’m just left wondering what else they’re doing and what other bad things I have not yet found.

Always always always LOOK AT THE SITE!

It’s very clear: poor usability breaks trust. The problem is that discovering it can take time, and isn’t attached to an easy metric, other than maybe page speed. Again, we’re left with that pesky requirement to actually look at the website upon which we’re seeking links! We have to spend time going through it! And so we should.

Source: The ever-increasing importance of usability and trust in link building

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?

26- Sep2017
Posted By: DPadmin
126 Views

12 SEO Mistakes To Avoid For Better Search Engine Rankings

Are you using the right keywords?

The power of search engine optimization is stronger than ever before: As many as 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search engine results, according to stats compiled by Search Engine Journal. This is reason enough that you need to employ good SEO techniques and get your business to rank on page one of every targeted keyword search.

Employing poor SEO practices can leave your business buried in search engine searches, making it impossible for your customers to find you. Below, Forbes Agency Council members share advice on the most common SEO errors that could be hurting your search engine rankings.

All photos courtesy of individual Forbes Agency Council members.

Search engine optimization is constantly evolving. Here, 12 Forbes Agency Council members share advice on how to avoid common SEO mistakes.

1. Lack Of Quality Content

While user experience is increasingly paramount, you also have to think about what search engine bots see when they crawl your website. Your content needs to be effective in communicating to your audience and to bots. Each page on your website should have 400 words of quality content at the very least, but 700 to 1,200 words is optimal. Remember, this includes your product and collections pages as well. – Brock Murrayseoplus+

2. Seeing Double

One of the most common SEO mistakes out there is duplicate content. If you have the same content on more than one page on your site then the search engines will be confused and your pages will end up competing against each other or your website will get penalized. – Andrew MillerEnter

3. Choosing The Wrong Keywords

The definition of “wrong” keywords extends to selecting keywords that don’t accurately describe your products and services, or selecting keywords that don’t convert into customers. Select target keywords carefully, as they are your biggest determinant in SEO success. – Brett FarmiloeMarkitors

4. Not Optimizing For Engagement

While backlinks are still a heavily weighted value in SEO rankings, you should focus on user engagement. We are finding that longer, well-written content that captures the reader’s attention is increasing rankings. Incorporate images, videos, quotes, resources and infographics to assist with the reader engagement. Your bounce rate should reduce while the time on site and rankings increase. – Breynan HammonsInnvio

5. Lack Of Title Tag Optimization

One of the biggest errors we see with our clients’ websites is that the textual content is not optimized. It is a best practice to have variations of your primary target keywords in three heading tags across your homepage and any other sub-pages where SEO work is being done. The heading tags consist of H1, H2 and H3 title tags. Keeping those optimized will help boost your rankings. – Darryl StevensDIGITECH Web Design

6. Keyword Stuffing

Now that Google’s algorithms are much smarter and always change, they can recognize and penalize sites for keyword stuffing. Instead of overstuffing, use relevant keywords within your site’s content but always in moderation. Always keep your audience in mind. – Solomon ThimothyOneIMS

7. Absence Of A Blog Strategy

One big SEO initiative that we work on with our clients is developing a consistent, ongoing, informative blog strategy. Too often, people create a blog and don’t take the time to blog properly – helpful, meaningful information with regular posting that uses appropriate keywords. This is very helpful for organic search, plus it provides great content to share on socials and e-newsletters. – Duree RossDurée & Company.com

8. Thin Content Lacking Target Keywords

One of the most common issues for my clients is the use of thin and irrelevant content that lacks a target keyword and related keywords. Content needs to have depth and deep analysis of the subject, and each piece should focus on one or two keywords at most. Next, semantically related keywords are needed for algorithms to grasp the relevancy of the topic. – Kristopher JonesLSEO.com

9. Index Bloat

I’d say about 35% of the leads we receive suffer from index bloat in one way or another, whether from poor WordPress optimization resulting in tag, category, media and archive pages being indexed or from an absurd amount of thin content being indexed. Typically, an excessive number of thin pages comes from blogging for the sake of blogging, rather than providing value and answering searchers’ queries. – Kyle SandersCWR SEO

10. Not Prioritizing High-Value Non-Branded Keywords

Like with many other practices, success in SEO starts with the fundamentals. And the reality is, many firms, including prominent ones, do not include valuable non-branded keywords in their title tags, especially on their most important pages. Simply put: If you aren’t taking the effort to use the keywords your target market is, they are going to have a harder time finding you. – Larry GurreriSosemo

11. Too Broad Optimization Goals

Trying to attract everyone. Optimizing for broader, more generic keywords is an easy and understandable trap to fall into. But here are the pitfalls: 1) There’s a lot of competition when optimizing for generic keywords, and 2) You may be drawing traffic to your site that will never convert. Instead, be as specific as possible with your keywords. You may get fewer visitors, but you’ll get more buyers. – Joey HodgesDemonstrate PR

12. Title Tags Not Describing The Page/Business

One of the most common SEO errors is incorrect assumptions about how to label title tags. A lot of companies make their homepage or sub-page title tags the title of their company. Instead, this should be a short description of the product or service the company provides. – Kyle KramerHuify

Source: 12 SEO Mistakes To Avoid For Better Search Engine Rankings

12- Sep2017
Posted By: DPadmin
119 Views

The Four Most Popular Myths About Paid Advertising: Debunked

Is paying for AdWords worth it? Well, yes and no.

To someone unfamiliar with pay-per-click (PPC), opening the Google AdWords dashboard might look like a seven-headed monster that no entrepreneur can slay. I saw this time and time again during my time at Google. It’s a big reason why my co-founder and I decided to start AdHawk in the first place.

AdWords is complicated and can be overwhelming, which means there is a lot of misinformation floating out there and plenty of myths that call for some debunking.

We at Adhawk have had thousands of conversations with clients and potential clients about these myths, so I’m going to put the most common ones to rest today. Let’s get debunkin’.

Myth No. 1: The top ad position is always the best.

It’s automatically assumed that the first results are going to give you the most return for your money, but that’s not necessarily true.

study by Hallam Digital found that while the top position drove the most clicks, the second and third positions drove three to four times more conversions, respectively. They conclude that providing useful information, optimizing your landing page, adding extensions, using relevant copy and improving your overall quality score should always be a higher priority than anything else.

They further suggest that the second and third results receive more high-quality clicks because the first position draws in a mass audience, many of whom are not qualified to drive that coveted conversion.

If your ad is not in the first position and you’re still driving conversions, budgeting correctly and turning a profit, then so be it. This brings me to the next myth.

Myth No. 2: Every business needs to double down on PPC advertising.

PPC is more effective for some businesses more than others, but what it really boils down to is budgeting. Brett Farmiloebreaks it down into these three easy formulas:

  • (Revenue / Sales Period) / Average Sale = Number of Customers
  • Number of Customers / Conversion Rate = Number of Leads
  • Number of Leads / Conversion Rate on Traffic = Amount of Traffic

What this means is that if the price to acquire a customer is greater than the customer’s lifetime value, PPC is not worth it for you.

This might be the case for low-traffic and high-competition industries, where PPC advertising may cut margins and not scale.

Myth No. 3: You don’t need PPC if you have high-ranking organic content.

Organic strategies like SEO, social and email go hand in hand with PPC strategies. If you have the bandwidth and resources to execute, do all of them.

Building organic traffic is a great strategy that will pay off in the long run. That being said, managing and updating your SEO efforts after every Google algorithm update can start to feel like a never-ending game of whack-a-mole. The advantage of PPC advertising is how quickly it can be spun up to scale your business, and the relative stability it brings to the table.

The numbers speak for themselves. Paid search results drive 1.5 times more clicks than organic traffic, primarily because paid spots drive traffic to customized landing pages. Organic content is a great way to generate an audience, but if you want a predictable and direct method of acquiring customers or driving conversions, PPC is the way to go.

If you already have high-ranking content, you can double-rank on Google by creating paid ads for the same keywords your organic content ranks for. That’s double the real estate and double the chances for conversions.

Forbes Agency Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Do I qualify?

Myth No. 4: Google is far superior to Bing.

For the record, no search engine is going to beat out Google in the near future. But Bing is in second place in terms of market share and it’s starting to gain significant traction.

Bing has its shortcomings (like less-advanced ad options), but it provides options that Google doesn’t, like being able to share budgets among all your campaigns.

Bing’s future is entertained by the fact that more than 50% of all search queries are now done through mobile. With Bing powering AOL, Yahoo, Amazon and Siri, things are looking bright.

This means Bing has a different user base than Google, which can provide a profitable opportunity to reach a new audience. For Search Engine Watch, driving conversions on Bing proved to be 63.23% cheaper than on Google.

The next time you hear one of these myths, share your newfound myth-busting knowledge with a friend, or tweet at me @AdHawk.

Source: The Four Most Popular Myths About Paid Advertising: Debunked

12- Sep2017
Posted By: DPadmin
158 Views

Everything You Need to Know About Hidden Text & SEO

Hidden text, with the goal of manipulating Google’s algorithm, can get you penalized. However, here are a few valid reasons to hide content.

Hidden text is one of the oldest tricks in the SEO handbook. If you’re hoping hidden text will somehow boost your SEO efforts, you’ll quickly discover this outdated tactic is ineffective.

Back in the day, when search engines were much less sophisticated, you could hide text on webpages in an attempt to gain ranking for certain keywords not visible on the page. You could also hide links on other websites linking back to the page you wanted to gain ranking.

Also known as “content cloaking,” this tactic used to be work because, even though the text is hidden to users, search engines could still crawl it. But that’s no longer the case – search engines are much more sophisticated and better at detecting spammy tactics.

Why Hide Text?

The reasons for using hidden text, and how it is implemented, can vary.

Here are a few reasons why some SEO professionals use this tactic.

Including Keywords They Can’t Show to the Public

For instance, competitor names. In the attempt to rank for competitor brand terms, these keywords can’t be added due to legal compliance, corporate marketing policies, or stealthy SEO approaches.

There are also SEOs who use incorrectly spelled keywords and cloak them because it won’t look appropriate – and to put it bluntly, just appears wrong – if you use them on a post.

Keyword Spamming the Page

Some SEO professionals believe that increasing the keyword count on a page can help rank that keyword. This may have been an effective strategy in the ancient SEO ages (late ’90s to early 2000s) but not today.

Hiding Links

Links are still strong ranking factors. Many sites used to get links from other sites that were hidden. These links were hidden because often times they were unrelated to the content on the site where they were posted.

Sometimes, the links are added on the sites that are owned by the same company, or owned by a partner that has predefined this relationship. Other times, sites are hacked to be able to add the links; this is not only bad for SEO, but is also illegal.

Google doesn’t like these methods of optimization because they aren’t focused on improving ranking based on quality content; instead SEOs are merely trying to get around the search engine’s algorithm.

Over the years, Google has improved its capability of determining if and where hidden content exists.

If, for some reason, your hidden content gets past Google’s sophisticated crawler without detection, the quality of the hidden content or hidden links are often not good enough that they may still be ranked very low. Additionally, Google has manual reviewers whose sole task is to manually check websites for these kind of things and penalize the sites accordingly.

Valid Reasons to Use Hidden Text

Google uses various methods to determine whether hidden content exists on a site, but they also allow other forms of hidden content. Here are a few valid reasons to hide content:

Part of Navigational Elements

Too many links in the screen can be overwhelming so drop down menus, multiple hierarchy menus, accordion navigation, tabbed menus, slider menus, etc. are used to keep the page from appearing cluttered.

Content is hidden from the user in the initial page load. Techniques like using a display:none property in CSS, controlled by JavaScript, can make the initial load hidden to users; hovering over or clicking on various page elements allow the hidden content to appear.

The main rule here is that it should be visually obvious to users how the hidden content should appear. An arrow, a button, a link that can be obviously found by users to display the hidden content is valid to use without any negative SEO implications. The intent to hide the content is related to the user experience and avoiding clutter on the page.

Paid Content Subscription

Google allows websites that offer paid subscription to hide content and even honors the First Click Free method of cloaking. This means that upon the initial visit from Google, you will see the content; but on the second visit to the page, the content no longer appears, instead you will need to login and often pay to view the content.

The intent here is to just give a sample preview of what a paid subscription of a publisher has to offer.

Elements of the Pages Designed for Mobile & Desktop

Responsive sites change and adjust based on the dimensions of a page. Once a certain width limit is reached, some page elements can disappear and some appear, but in the source code they were all there at the same time but are temporarily hidden. This is done for usability purposes and Google is aware of these different viewport formats and doesn’t penalize your site for it if the intent appears to really be for proper mobile and desktop user experience.

Graceful Degradation

Some developers prepare their sites for the optimal user experience with advance web browsers and old web browsers. They ensure that – if the browser doesn’t support images, JavaScript, or CSS – this content will still render properly. However, to enable this capability, sometimes the content for the old web browsers need to be hidden on the new web browsers.

This also applies to cases in which these features are disabled on a browser and when the page can’t load simply due to bandwidth constraints. Search engines may see both pieces of content but as long as the content that appears on a degraded view is exactly the same as the content on the normal view, there shouldn’t be a problem.

The common trend in these four situations: the intent to hide content was never related to trying to game the algorithm in an attempt to improve search engine ranking.

How Hidden Text is Created & Ways to Detect It

Same Colored Text and Background

White text on white background is one of the oldest methods and easiest to detect. Simply highlighting the page can expose this text with a CTRL+A or you can always check the source code.

Disabling CSS can also expose this but using old school font color attributes of the HTML 4 <font> tag will still hide the content since it doesn’t use CSS.

CSS Hidden Text

CSS can hide content in numerous ways, like using the properties display:nonevisibility:hidden, height:0width:0text-spacing:-1000, etc. These can be easily exposed by disabling CSS or simply viewing the source code.

JavaScript can control these properties so it is also advisable to disable JavaScript as well to view any hidden content. If you do not know how to disable CSS, you can use the Web Developer Toolbar by Chris Pedrick.

User Agent Detection

Server side scripting languages (like PHP, ASP/.net, JSP, Cold a Fusion, Perl, Node.JS, etc) that detect user-agents would normally be used to determine the web browser you are using. These  can also be used to detect the search engine bots. When Googlebot, or other search engines, are detected, a different version of the page is sent. When viewed in the source code, you cannot even see the hidden content. The only way to identify if this type of content exists is to change your browser’s user agent to mimic a search engine bot. There are many web browser plugins you can install to help change the web browsers user agent and pretend to be a search engine.

IP Address Detection

Similar to the user agent detection, the IP address is detected instead. Each request to a web page comes from an IP address and there are some known IP addresses of search engines where server side scripting can also be used to determine if the visitor is a search engine crawler. This can be done by using Google Translate, or looking at Google cache. The latter detection method will not work if the cloaking page uses the Meta Noarchive tag. This method also become problematic for the developer cloaking the content because it is hard to find a very complete list of IP addresses that search engines use.

Reverse and Forward DNS Detection

IP addresses can be spoofed. So the most sophisticated way to cloak content is to reverse and forward DNS detection. Ironically, Google and Bing/Yahoo will tell you how to do this. The reason why you can find this information from search engines is because of the valid reasons to cloak content, like when implementing the first click free for paid content subscriptions. Similarly, for you to check if content is hidden this way, you can use Google translate.

What to Do When a Competitor Uses Hidden Text

Google is pretty good, but still not always perfect. Once in awhile you will see a high ranking page, outranking your site and they have hidden content everywhere.

What can you do about it? Google has a page to report this, the Google spam report page.

Just because you reported it, does not mean it’s going down. This will be reviewed by their manual reviewers and if they find the page hiding the content on purpose to gain some ranking advantage, the page can get penalized in Google. If they find the same issues occur across many sites, it may lead to an algorithm update in the future.

Source: Everything You Need to Know About Hidden Text & SEO

12- Sep2017
Posted By: DPadmin
210 Views

Visual Search: Looking Beyond Image SEO Marketing

The future of search is visual, whether it’s on Amazon, Pinterest, or Google. Learn what this shift means for SEO and how to adapt.

I want to tell you a story about a young Google algorithm.

He was born blind, in a world where a picture is worth a thousand searches. This little algorithm had one dream. To be able to see. So he got his friends to describe him images, but still he couldn’t see.

He built magical Google Goggles, but these didn’t work. Then one day, he built a learning machine and finally, after years of struggle, he could recognize images.

That little algorithm who could is named visual search and has taken on a job as the world’s personal shopper.

Image Searches Are Now Commonplace

Look at the two options below, which is more useful if you wanted to buy a handbag?

Google web vs image search results

Slyce asked that question to consumers. 74 percent of them replied that text-based keyword searches are inefficient in helping to find the right product online.

A 2017 report by Jumpshot & Moz further supports that discovery through pictures is alive and well, with around 27 percent of all searches being for images. MozCast reports image blocks in around 11 percent of Google results. While Jumpshots’ data shows images earn 3 percent of all Google search clicks.

Moz & Jumpshot image serach

Image SEO: The Early Years

Let’s be honest, image optimization is the dinosaur of the SEO world. Sure you sayyou implement image SEO for additional ranking opportunities in Google image search, but in most cases, you don’t truly believe this will have a significant impact on your KPIs.

When is the last time you looked at the sessions from image search in Google Analytics? Did you even notice years ago the change from the referral path /imgres under google.com referral to a fully fledged source medium as images.google.com?

Most of the image SEO best practices are more for user experience than search engines rankings. Take a critical look at common image optimization tips:

Primary Reason Behind Common Image Optimization Tips

User Experience

  • Rankings OtherShy away from stock to use original, high-quality images
  • Shy away from stock to use original, high-quality images
  • Context is key, be relevant to surrounding text
  • Appropriate file format so images are crisp
  • Optimize image file size for web page load times
  • Use standard image ratios
  • Use image dimensions large enough to be clearly visible on any device
  • Add descriptive captions for users who scan

Rankings

  • Descriptive image file names
  • Descriptive alt text
  • Descriptive image titles
  • Submit an image sitemap
  • Schema markup

Other

  • Open Graph tags
  • Twitter cards
  • Beware of copyright

And one can argue descriptive image file names, alt text, and image titles are used as an opportunity to add a keyword in order to rank the page, not necessarily the image itself.

Not to say the image optimization tips above are not valuable. You should still do these things.

The hard truth is SEO professionals often neglect image optimization as an afterthought to page-level optimization, if it’s considered at all. And this level of image optimization alone is not going to be enough to win users.

So why are you reading about it…

The Rise of Visual Search

In the past there was image search, where search engines took a text-based query and tried to find the best visual match.

In the present there is visual search, where search engines, social networks, ecommerce powerhouses, startups and many companies in between take an image as the query.

A change in consumer behavior is happening. In the words of Jeffrey Gitomer “people don’t like to be sold to, but they love to buy.”

When you see something you’re interested in, whether it’s online or offline, you want a fast an easy way to get more information.

For example, you see a pair of shoes in a magazine. With image recognition, you can take a photo and find similar item for sale online.

This see-snap-buy behavior is becoming commonplace and has opened up opportunities for companies to enter the purchase cycle with the photo as the search query. This places them higher in the conversion funnel than a text-based search query.

Visual search is fast becoming a staple of shopping apps. And with the impact on KPIs, it’s no surprise why.

BloomReach found that visual search is associated with 48 percent more product views. Consumers are 57 percent more likely to make a return visits and spend on average 9 percent more on mobile than those who do not use it.

Amazon, Pinterest, and many more have launched visual search capabilities on mobile. There is a battle of the brands to be your snap and shop app of choice.

Visual search timeline of brand entry

At present, early adopters Amazon (turning the world into a hyperlink) and Pinterest (promoting on online discovery) are leading the pack. But Google isn’t taking this lying down.

Pinterest visual search

Visual Search & Google

Google has been quietly adding machine learning and image recognition capabilities to mobile image search over the last years. Plotting the updates, you can see clear stepping stone technologies building on the theme of visual search.

  • Related images (April 2013): Click on a result to view visually similar images.
  • Collections (November 2015): Allows users to save images directly from Google’s mobile image search into folders. Google’s answer to a Pinterest board.
  • Product images in web results (October 2016): Product images begin to display next to website links in mobile search.
  • Product details on images (December 2016): Click on an image result to display product price, availability, ratings, and other key information directly in the image search results.
  • Similar items (10th April 2017): Google can identify products, even within lifestyle images, and showcases similar items you can buy online.
  • Style ideas (April 17, 2017): The flip side to similar items. When browsing fashion product images on mobile, Google shows you outfit montages and inspirational lifestyle photos to highlight how the product can be worn in real life.
  • Image badges (August 1, 2017): Label on the image indicate what other details are available, encouraging more users to click. For example, badges such as “recipe” or a timestamp for pages featuring videos. But the most significant badge is “product” – shown if the item is available for purchase online.

These developments highlight that Google is making a play to turn image search into shoppable product discovery. It’s easier to show than tell.

Google image search mobile functionality

The new visual search capabilities are all algorithmically selected based on a combination of schema and image recognition. Google told TechCrunch:

“The images that appear in both the style ideas and similar items grids are also algorithmically ranked, and will prioritize those that focus on a particular product type or that appear as a complete look and are from authoritative sites.”

How To Get Your Brand’s Images Featured

1. Implement Schema Markup

Badges are simple enough to win:

  • For the recipe badge, use recipe markup.
  • For the video badge, use video markup.
  • For the product badge, use product markup.

Getting into the Similar Items and Related Items sections are a touch more challenging. To do this, ensure you have product markup on the host page with the meta-data minimum requirement:

  • Name
  • Image
  • Price
  • Currency
  • Availability

But the more quality detail, the better, as it will make your results more robust. How product markup elements are populated into Google image search is shown below.

Product markup for Google image search

2. Validate Your Implementation

Run a few URLs through Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool. Don’t simply scan if there are no errors and move on. Be sure to look at the information itself to ensure it’s user-friendly.

3. Wait

It can take up to one week for your site’s images to be crawled. Like all schema markup, how items display in search results is at Google’s discretion and not guaranteed. However, quality markup will “increase the chance” of your images showing up.

4. Do a Site:Yourdomain.Com Query

Why your own site? To confirm your images have been indexed. Be sure to do this image search on mobile web or in the Android Search app. It is a mobile-first world. Not all image search functionality is visible on desktop.

If you see no image results badges, you likely have an implementation issue. Go back to step two.

If you see badges, click a couple to ensure they show your ideal markup in the details. Once you confirm all is well, then you can begin to search for your targeted keywords to see how you rank and if you are eligible for Similar Items or Related Items.

Note: While Badges and Related Items are common, Similar Items only cover a limited number of products in fashion. Google says it will expand in the coming months.

The Next Steps for Visual Search

The future is “Lens” – using your smartphone to translate real world input to digital action. No more QR codes or snap tags.

Markerless image recognition is coming. A world where nothing needs to be done to an image or object to turn it into a visual trigger to cue digital content. The static world becomes digitally connected simply by pointing your phone at it.

Both Pinterest and Google have the functionality, but I’ll let Google CEO Sundar Pichai explain in more detail:

I can envision:

  • Product packaging coming to life. You point your phone at the product and it displays recipe possibilities, maps to nearby stores with the item in stock or coupon for an online order.
  • Billboards of celebrities endorsing products will naturally connect you to the store to buy the product, but may also provide the latest gossip on that celebrity.
  • Stranger’s outfits become walking ads when I can snap a pic and literally buy the shirt off their back. This will be a world where you can spontaneously buy most items you can see.

That is the power of visual search.

So, what are you doing to make your brand more visually appealing?

Source: Visual Search: Looking Beyond Image SEO Marketing