The “Holistic Marketing” Craze….What’s it all about?

By | eCommerce Marketing, Google Adwords, Internet Marketing Fundamentals, Internet Marketing News, SEO

There is no such thing as a modern successful digital marketing campaign that focuses only on one aspect of digital marketing. Search engine optimization, pay per click marketing and social media strategy cannot be run independent of each other in order to work. There are simply too many barriers to entry from every angle – the major social media sites like Facebook are burying free organic content; SEO is based upon human interaction, and pay per click marketing campaigns are too short-term to work on their own.

When these and other digital marketing techniques are combined, they create visibility and conversions that are much better than the sum of their parts. This is becoming known as “holistic marketing.”

– Holistic Marketing

Los Angeles Holistic Digital MarketingWhen SEO, SMM and PPC are put together, holistic marketing occurs. Each of these three disciplines support each other more than you can know, and slowly but surely people are figuring it out. If you are trying to stay ahead of the curve, then you need to incorporate holistic marketing into your digital marketing plan immediately. Here is a simplified version of how holistic marketing works.

First of all, you must realize that most of all holistic marketing is focused on creating a positive relationship with the major search engines. 85% of new businesses found through Google, Yahoo and Bing – having a high rank in the search engines is the new word-of-mouth.

The major search engines are much more sophisticated than they were even five years ago. In more ways than one, they now function more like a human than ever before. They are able to determine not only how long people have stayed on your website after clicking there, but also their general attitude while they were there. If the people are clicking away from your site five seconds after they click on it, you will definitely not have a high ranking within the major search engines.

In order to rank highly on the three major search engines, you need more than search engine optimization today. A large part of the analytics that make a difference in search engine ranking come from the major social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter. Google, Yahoo and Bing are also set up to analyze statistics such as “social momentum,” “stickiness” and “link building momentum.” In short, if your site is not becoming more popular by having real human visitors tweet and post about it, then you will not achieve the high search engine ranking that you may think you deserve.

In order to obtain these new social engagements, you need to understand the ways in which the social media sites curate content on their pages as well. The same keyword functionality that defines how search engines index content are now a huge part of how the major social media websites index content as well. In short, you need “red flag words” for the major social media websites to properly index the content that you are trying to bring to your followers. In some extreme cases like Facebook, your content may not even be served to the people who like your page if top keywords are not used in the content.

One of the ways in which you can find these keywords is through a pay per click campaign. Pay per click campaigns bring back results more quickly than either search engine optimization campaigns or social media marketing campaigns. From the results that you are able to garner from a PPC campaign, you can more easily find the keywords that will work in your SEO and SMM.

The above timeline is only one of the ways in which you can generate positive feedback for yourself online. However, any other dissemination of data will function in a similar way – all three of the major digital marketing disciplines work off of each other in order to create a total profile for your website online. This profile will then be used by search crawlers in order to determine your relevance to the audience that you are targeting. If you are seen as relevant and popular, you will be shown more often to the audience that you are trying to reach.

All of this may seem very complicated; however, starting a holistic digital marketing campaign is actually quite easy. Make sure that you have original content that is relevant and up-to-date. Try not to syndicate content, and try to write with a personality that will keep people on your page for a long time.

 

Top 5 Tips to Generate More Traffic To Your YouTube Videos

By | Internet Marketing Fundamentals, Internet Marketing News, Los Angeles SEO, Paid Advertising

YouTube Digital Marketing Tips

With millions of people watching videos on YouTube, seems like it has become the second largest search engine. Or maybe it has become one of the favorite social media website. We can rightly say that it has successfully captured the interest of web-users present across the globe.

Well then, there is no denying that it has a great potential to draw unimaginable traffic. But hold on, with YouTube been quite over-crowded as countless businesses are frequently found uploading a lot many videos, how do you expect your video content to go viral? This is when Video SEO can be a great source of help for you.

Still alien to Video SEO? I would love to introduce it to you. Video SEO, is defined as optimizing the video content with an aim of drawing search engine traffic. The only goal of this type of SEO is to make your video content appear in video search engines along with organic search results.

Youtube, forms an integral part of Video SEO. Simply uploading a video and expecting some magic to happen that multiplies the number of viewers coming watching your video, sounds pretty unrealistic. Instead, it would be ideal if you devote ample time in optimizing your videos for SEO, and gradually you will witness how impressively target traffic comes rolling.

YouTube is a large place and is dumped with plenty of videos by your competitors itself. So you will have to use Video SEO quite smartly to beat your competitors and win the race. Not many have much idea on how to correctly perform Video SEO for YouTube.

1)Feel free to write interestingly long-video descriptions

Do not be sacred to use your writing skills for preparing a really long video description for your video. Like we humans YouTube or Google are not blessed with ears so that they can listen to your video. But that’s okay, they have another way of analyzing your video and that is through the text that is present around your video.

The mantra used by YouTube is that, if it knows your video properly it would confidently give higher rankings for your target keyword. Note that, it would take into account the keywords that you must have mentioned in the description for ranking your way too long keywords.

The informative descriptions with some super smart techniques will fetch quick rankings to the targeted keyword. So make sure you use keyword-rich descriptions to gain desirable results.

2) Focus your strategies around video keywords

Getting higher rankings in YouTube is a matter of pride indeed, but wouldn’t it be great if along with YouTube your video gets ranked in Google as well.

Did you know that the search engine giant Google, gives an advantage to YouTube videos in the Search Engine Page Results (SERPs)? Anyhow this applies only for some specific keywords. Here comes the good news- these specific keywords are known as ‘Video Keywords’.

So while you are brainstorming the ideas for which keywords should be included in your video, browse the web to see which video results appear with a similar keyword on the very first page. Supposedly, if you find any such keywords in the search results do consider them for getting your video ranked in Google and YouTube.

3) Increase video views through online communities

LinkedIn and various other online communities, offer you a superb chance for generating more traffic. The catch here is that, most of the online communities don’t really appreciate the idea of entities coming over and leaving links on their content. Perhaps because they do not find it pleasing enough.

However, they do not stop you from sharing YouTube videos, so you can go ahead with that. You surely must be aware of the fact that how vital are video views. The YouTube ranking formula is very simple, it prefers to give rankings to those videos, which have the maximum views. More views equals to more rankings. Online communities can be a brilliant source of help to accelerate your video views.

On your end all you would have to do is, make efforts in finding a question in the community that your video has the potential to answer. Then persuade the visitors by letting them know that they can get the correct answers by watching your video.

Do not hesitate in sharing your video on online communities, nothings bad in that. In fact this would serve as an incredible advantage. Wondering how? It will knit your video with just the kind of quality and fairly high-retention views, that YouTube has always looked forward to.

So, definitely online communities have got the magic wand in their hands so make sure you make the best use of it.

4) Subscribing and Liking are two powerful tools

Unlike Google, the algorithm of YouTube does not entertain backlinks. In contrast it pays more emphasis on user experience signals. You can expect your video to thrive with success, if the web-users have had a good time watching it.

When users hit the like button or choose to subscribe, it clearly states that they loved watching your video. This in return lets YouTube know, that your video has succeeded in capturing the attention of users and pertains fair chances of creating a revolution.

You need to reach out to your users and include a strong message for call to action, at the end of your video that asks them to subscribe.

Since subscribing and liking play a determining role in YouTube rankings, so make it a point that you ask the users to comment, like and subscribe to your video.

5) Avoid the mess and create playlists that are keyword-rich

Do not make the mistake of creating an impression that your YouTube channel is nothing more than a complicated maze. The safest way to direct more YouTube search traffic to your video is by sorting your videos into playlists.

If you are successful in forming a keyword-rich playlists, this would help YouTube in developing a deeper insight about the topic of your video.

In case you have been frequently posting videos on YouTube, it would be ideal to create fine playlists.

Not only will your videos appear on the first page of YouTube rankings, but also the chances of them getting viewed will improve.

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WordPress & SEO – A Happy Marriage :)

By | Search Engine Optimization, SEO, SEO Company, Wordpress

wordpress-seo-los-angeles

There are many reasons why people choose WordPress as their platform for websites, blogs, and e-commerce sites. The platform is easy to learn, easy to use, and it’s great for creating a site that is search engine friendly. That’s because sites that use this platform come with a few tools that help with search engine optimization. Several features of WordPress sites combine to make it a great way to build a site, regardless of one’s experience level. Even basic sites on this platform come with some basic SEO-friendly qualities built into them. A WordPress site helps search engines find sites, understand those sites, and make them appear in search results almost immediately after content is posted. Here are ten reasons that illustrate exactly how WordPress helps with SEO.
1. WordPress works well with mobile devices.

Search engines favor platforms that are compatible with mobile devices. A large percentage of internet traffic now comes from people who are using phones to access the web. Because WordPress sites are very mobile-friendly, this is a benefit when it comes to search engine optimization. Sites that can’t be viewed using mobile phones are missed by lots of web users. As more traffic comes from smartphone users, the importance of having pages that are accessible from any device will only increase.

2. It allows for customizable SEO. 

Because there are lots of different options for search engine optimization on WordPress sites, they are easy to customize in ways that search engines favor. Highly customizable options mean that it’s simple to add features that make a site even more search engine friendly. For example, WordPress sites make it easy to create an organized system of categories and tags. They also help users understand the best way to format urls and titles.

3. Its site architecture is spider-friendly.

Because they are structured well and designed by experts, WordPress sites are made to be spider-friendly. A spider is a program that processes the information on a website to determine its functionality and usefulness. Good site architecture is important when a spider is crawling a site because if the spider cannot understand the content, it cannot properly makes its determination. This can hurt a site’s ranking. Having a well-structured sites is an important component of being search engine friendly.

4. Text based platforms get preferred treatment.

Search engines favor text-based sites because they’re easier for spiders to understand. Spiders crawl through all the content on a site, and text based sites make the most sense to these programs. While spiders can’t understand images, videos, and other forms of media very easily, they do understand text. Text-based platforms make it simple for bots to crawl, index, and rank websites. For this reason, these types of platforms make content accessible to customers and readers much faster than platforms that are image-based.

5. WordPress pages get indexed quickly.

Because they have good site architecture and are text based, these sites get indexed quickly. This is useful for several reasons. Pages that are indexed get seen. They also establish their web presence sooner. In very competitive search rankings, being first can be an advantage. Once a page is indexed, it can start appearing among search results when someone types in a keyword or keyphrase. Pages that take a long time to index take longer to show up in searches. The pages can be directly accessed in the meantime, but until they are indexed, they will not show up in search results.

6. It uses basic web design principles. 

Most search engines favor basic web design for all the reasons previously mentioned. They are less confusing to spiders and easier to index. This gives them a significant advantage when it comes to optimization techniques. Because the foundation is already structurally and architecturally sound, any extra optimization only increases the site’s value.

7. WordPress sites come with excellent content management systems.

Its excellent content management system makes WordPress easy to use. This means fewer SEO mistakes because users have a way to understand exactly how to keep their content properly organized. Detailed systems of creating hierarchies of tags filed under different categories add greatly to a site’s search engine optimization, and this platform greatly simplifies that process.

8. WordPress sites automatically ping major search engines. 

Each time a new post is added, each of the major search engines are notified. This means indexing happens quickly. Once pages are indexed, they can then begin appearing in search results for their particular associated keywords and keyphrases. Once search engines know that new content has been added, the indexing can begin. The fact that WordPress has automated the process of pinging various search engines the moment new content gets posted is one of its major advantages.

9. It allows for plug-ins. 

There are lots of different types of plug-ins that have different functions, and some are specifically geared toward optimizing for the web. These additional options add value for site users as well as search engines because well-organized content is easier to find, access, and use. Plug-ins can be used with all types of WordPress sites, and they can greatly improve a site’s functionality.

10. Eliminates the need for redirects. 

Redirects happen when websites change their web address to a different URL. If each page of a site is linked directly to the site’s address, a change in address will mean that each page has to use 404 redirect. Search engines don’t like redirects, and WordPress makes it possible to avoid them altogether. Users create pages that link internally within a site. If the site address changes, it’s not a problem. The pages can still be accessed using the new web address without any redirects at all.

These are just some of the reasons why webmasters and search engines love WordPress. The platform provides the perfect foundation for a search engine optimized website. Combining the power of this open-source program with more in-depth search optimization techniques gives sites that are built using this platform a chance to quickly become powerhouses when it comes to search rankings. While other platforms offer certain benefits, few come close to offering as much SEO-friendly and user-friendly design elements as WordPress sites. SEO experts know what an important tool WordPress can be in building a fully-optimized website.

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Google Algorithms: Bane or Boon?

By | Local SEO, Los Angeles Internet Marketing, Los Angeles SEO, SEO, SEO Company

Google SEO Algorithm Update

The end of 2014 has seen a lot of drastic changes as far as Google and SEO is concerned. With Google on a mission to eliminate low content sites and broken pages, SEO marketers are having a hard time coping up. The dreaded Panda 4.1 is finally here, bringing with it a wave of restlessness within the SEO industry. All their known techniques are failing, fast. So what do we do to overcome this problem? The answer is pretty simple. We try and understand Google, and evolve accordingly.

First, lets understand why Google penalizes websites. It is because of two reasons; using black hat SEO, that is manipulative methods and providing a low quality experience to users who visit your site. Manipulative methods may include both on site and off site techniques. On site techniques refer to the methods within the technical set up of the site. Off site techniques refer to the back links, which is used primarily by Google to determine the standing of the site. A penalty can either be manual or an algorithmic one. A manual penalty happens when someone from the Google team reviews your site and deems it to be penalized, if it does not meet with Google’s guidelines. An algorithmic penalty happens because of Panda and Hummingbird updates.

In my personal opinion, it is more of a boon than bane. How? Lets discuss a few things to back my point up.

Allows fresh content – Being constantly under the threat of Penguin, Panda and HummingBird makes a SEO marketer more consistent with the content on their pages. Google specifically uses these algorithms to eliminate pages with low quality content. It gives the SEO an ‘inspiration’ to constantly update their pages with engaging content, hence allowing more traffic and contented users, which ultimately helps increase the overall rating of the page. It allows the SEO to not only release better content, but also update their old content, if they want their old pages not to be penalized.

Removal of unnecessary links – If Google finds that their are just too many useless links on your site or on other sites which lead to yours, it can be penalized. Until last year this was not a problem, but now Google is taking special care towards this issue. All in all it helps. How? I believe that having two or three good quality links is better than having one hundred irrelevant ones. These links lead users to unnecessary pages which are not relevant to them, thereby decreasing the overall feasibility of your site. To avoid all this, a SEO marketer must take special care as to what links are being used on the web page.

Helps keep a tab on your page – Sometimes, Malware can cause a lot of problems. You might not even be aware when a Malware has hit your page, causing useless ads and links to pop up when your page is opened. When a user hits your page and faces such Malware, which is generally linking to pornography and gambling, they might get irritated and leave your page. Even if your site is offering a good content and information, such pop ups can ruin the overall hits on your site and give Google algorithms a chance to strike at it.

Google SEO Secret Graph

Overall, I think that progress is not possible without deviation from the norm, and until now, during the early age of SEO, malpractices are being used to boost the search optimization. Black hat SEO might not be visible to the eye of the user, but it cannot escape the all seeing eye of Google. It might seem like the difficult path, which it is, but it is the correct way of going about things. Google does not want to trouble SEOs, on the contrary it aims at providing with a satisfactory user experience, and all these penalties imposed give SEO the encouragement to take care of such problems and meet with the Google guidelines. If followed, it can considerably give your site traffic a boost and also gain a goodwill with your users.

What is your 2015 SEO Strategy look like?

By | Search Engine Optimization, SEO, SEO Company, seo los angeles

SEO Agency 2015 Los Angeles

Come 2015, Google fails to disappoint yet again. With its new algorithms like Panda 4.1, it induces panic into the minds of several search marketers. Google has taken upon itself the responsibility of removing low quality content pages, especially those which are practicing black hate SEO. So with the traditional techniques of SEO drawing to an end, what chances are we left with to survive this ordeal?
Well, surprisingly a lot. With the ever changing scenario of Google’s algorithms, all we need to do is change with it and evolve. Here are a few techniques which I believe will help a search marketer to take a sigh of relief in 2015.

1. Re-frame your URL structure

You may have noticed that the best search results in Google often have a streamlined URL than the search results down below. A URL structure and links are the backbone of any site. The clearer they are, the better the SEO. For example, the URL which ends with strings like id=54637&color=8&size=2 are generally very long and have no relevant keywords. Such pages end up way below in the search results. Hence, it is better to use static URLs than the dynamic ones.

2. Choose links with extreme caution

As I have always stated in all my posts, it is always advisable to have three or max four relevant links than having hundreds of links not relevant to the user. Google does not favour such sites and the overall ranking of the site will fall, unless you remove such unnecessary links. Broken links and 404 errors are also responsible for lowering the search rating. Identify and locate such links and eliminate or fix them as soon as possible. Try and focus on few, hard earned and reputed links. If you really have that many relevant links, try dividing them on different pages.

3. Widen the scope for Hummingbird friendly keywords

With the arrival of Hummingbird, Google changed its way of parsing queries. Instead of matching separate keywords to pages, it now searches for actual content. I am not saying that keywords are not important, just that the way they are to be put down. First, try and determine phrases people might use while looking for your product. For example, in lieu of just courier service, you could write express same day courier, or inexpensive courier service etc.

4. Consider Secure Encryption

A few weeks ago, Google hinted that websites using a secure encryption may get a boost in search rankings. All sites starting with HTTPS would now become a ranking signal. Using secure encryption is a method of exchanging data across the web using methods to protect the transferred information. As per Google, sites using a secure encryption will have better search results over time, than the ones still using HTTP.

5. Look beyond personal search results

Since most of the Google searches are so highly personalized, it sometimes gets difficult to get an accurate idea as to how much is the overall ranking of your page for users who have never browsed your page and for users spread across various locations. It will be impossible for you too, to track these search results accurately from your computer as Google personalizes your search too. Your IP address is the thing that makes all the difference. Your IP address and the location registered under Google search tools determine the location based search results. Similarly, if you are using web based tools for SEO, Google will allow you to change the location settings but still check rankings based upon your IP address. It can be solved by using a simple tool called Rank Tracker, that allows you to optimize your search from both the locations.

Most of the topics mentioned above are pretty simple logically once you have gone through them, but they can get tricky when implemented. But in time, if applied correctly, they are fruitful. These tips should help you optimize your search and live peacefully during 2015.

Radical New Thinking To Prosper in SEO

By | Los Angeles SEO, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, SEO Company

If you want to excel in SEO in 2015, there is only one way. You need to be open about ideas and provide new and fresh ideas to the industry. Over the last few years, SEO has become such a big practice that there are so many different categories now, content marketing, online reputation management, public relations, technical consultation and others.

These services can often be standalone practices but more often than not we see the titans are clashing. The copywriter thinks the SEO PM is crap and doesn’t understand a word how to promote a copy, the web designer might argue that the on-page optimisation checks are clearly ruining his best ideas. Thus, although heated at moments, the people get to discuss a lot, all these specialists and that way the industry is benefiting from this extensive brainstorming. The industry is growing at a pace never seen before.

Nowadays I often wonder whether SEO should come under the marketing category or not and more often than not, I felt that this service is more of an inherent feature of web development and not exactly a stand-alone marketing process.

If you ponder along with me, you might see SEO under a new light. This way SEO guys can be different from other marketing chaps in the business and also can become a formidable opponent to counter-attack, for the web designers and developers.

When we start thinking of SEO as a feature of the product, the website or a software may be, instead of a marketing service, it is streamlined with the total effort being put in the whole process. Agile development method, user-centric design and a very responsive system.

SEO, at its very core, is still a marketing method, the process in which you optimise your website for better exposure. I have, somehow, found it easier to get newer ideas by putting it under newer lenses, regularly.

Improve The Product

SEO has been added much later after the initiation of many businesses. This is true in most of the cases. Once the whole site has been designed, it is given to the SEO people to push the website on different search engines. This team then executes their tricks on the website to gain traffic and increase visibility.

Many SEO workers believe in this method as well. They tell people how to gain more market share by improving the ranking in the search market. The marketing pitch often contains how they can really gain considerably by using those tricks. They use all their weapons in the colt to win their way to their client.

Still this approach pushes SEO to a corner where it gets stuck rather badly. This creates an illusion about SEO that it’s a magic solution for every online marketing problem, comparable to paid social or paid campaigns like PPC, using which new and old customers are diverted towards a website. In this process, however, the optimization is done around the website than from within it.

In recognising the SEO to be a product, rather than a service, which we suggested earlier, iterative and not delivered, we can actually make SEO a feature which should be built into the product rather than sticking it on the top of the product when it is done. The product is only finished when we see every SEO aspect has been interwoven in the product to neatly and closely. SEO is all about pull and not push. No more developing a channel for selling the product after it is done.

The major difference here is to see the total SEO thing as a completed product than to finish it and try to shove it in the search engines. The off-site white hat SEO is a different thing, it is not obsolete, nor is it unreal. It is, on the other hand, a channel where the returns are really diminishing. This practice looks to gather the signals which are then added to the finished product to call it a part of the product.

This is the way how you can differentiate between earned media and paid media. Those who prefer content marketing might prefer uploading infographics or exploit advertising but these services have two drawbacks, they are limited in scale and also the success rate is somewhat lower. On the other hand, if you are into grey hat manipulative techniques, you are vulnerable to penalties.

When these things happen, SEO becomes defunct and as a marketing channel. But if SEO is maintained as a feature of the product, it will glow brightly though.

Build Your SEO Roadmap

SEO roadmap is basically a mix of two steps. The first jab is to pump the website up and then as the uppercut start building links on various nice sites, in whatever way possible if I might add that. While the second process goes on forever, we start measuring the percentage of success or failure we have by the ranking and showcase your abilities if the organic traffic improved.

I have other ideas though.

Rajen Seth actually demonstrated a remarkably different technique at Google Ventures for structuring product roadmap that tells you how to get a more structured SEO effort and also clarifies the SEO PMs and clients of their roles and benchmarks.

While this might look a bit uninspiring to a few ambitious people, this is also a very crucial and detailed process. It also shows the relative positioning of websites after months from starting it.

Three points from that roadmap, here for you, in short.

Commitment: whatever is under development should have a date ready and this date must be clearly mentioned to the client.

No Timeline: Committing things which are under development without any specific date.

Visionary: These are more desires than pans. These are in no phase of implementation and need to go through the process in future.

We can actually move away from the tried and tested Plan- Build- Optimise- Measure framework and then you can actually build a streaming content about the building process, how you improve and add particular features and communicate or priorities things as situations develop.

Understand the User Better

Recently two things happened, the context became more important than content and Google stopped providing keyword data in Google Analytics. This has forced many website owners and SEO managers to focus more on user behaviour. This has also changed the definition and understanding of keyword. The user intent behind a search is becoming more important nowadays.

Nowadays we need to answer questions like

  • How near is the customer of becoming a buyer?

  • How well am I serving to the mobile traffic?

  • What is the user looking for when he is searching for my keywords?

These things are surely positive from a user perspective but if you notice closely, these points are exactly what a marketeer also ponders about. If we adopt the product development model, as I suggested previously, it may look like the following.

  • How near is the customer of becoming a buyer?

  • Is my mobile experience good enough to please a visitor?

  • What are those features which can be added or removed to make the experience even better?

These questions are not what the traditional SEO used to think about but more of UI designing or CRO but the answer to these questions will surely help the optimization if we stick to the idea of the product based SEO.

Summary

The SEO world is clearly divided into two distinct segments about what exact “New SEO” is. While one group strongly believes that creating great content and getting high quality natural link is needed, the other group believes that product development with integrated SEO is the way.

It is true that organic search and SEO will remain forever relevant and also profitable marketing channel. But you need to think about changing the perspective to understand, survive and prosper in SEO in near future.

SiteLinks Can Increase The Quality of Your Paid Campaign

By | Link Building, Los Angeles Internet Marketing, Paid Advertising, SEO, SEO Company

Last year in June, when Google introduced enhanced campaign, they also introduced another feature called, enhancement to sitelinks, which enables site owners and SEO guys a chance to add descriptive test for exact sitelinks. Sitelink is a great feature really, the best way to increase your CTR if you ask us. This is also good for branding terms, as Google stresses upon.

There are two direct advantages of having this, enhancement to sitelinks. Firstly, it allows you to add direct link to multiple pages of your website when you are running your paid campaigns. Secondly, it gives you more real estate on the SERP screen for your paid search results, obviously.

Sitelinks directly influences ad rank and a better written sitelinks description can easily improve the rank of your advert on the search page. Ad rank used to be decided by the cost per click CPC and the quality score of the ad but the ad extensions and sitelinks are also being taken into the calculation.

So, how difficult is this to implement? Sounds easy, doesn’t it? However, the reality is little different. Firstly, what surprises me is that very few and rare companies are taking advantage of this, at least to the fullest possible extreme. This is the reason why Google was forced to actually note this thing publicly, in a blog post, last January. If you google, may be 1 out of three companies are using this and the two which are not using, they are also knee deep into the SEO as well. As surprising as it might sound!

These additional descriptions can actually be more handy in describing links to specific pages of the website. For example, if you are writing more about a link, then the user will understand more by simply reading the link structure. They are getting more useful information and relevant information. Google tested it and found the CTR is significantly improved once you start using these enhanced sitelinks over traditional sitelinks.

However, when we googled for products, we saw mostly the traditional site links are being used, instead of the descriptive text versions which are so much more effective.

Surprising as it might sound, implementing this feature is rather easy. When you add a new link, Google provides you with a field to write the descriptions. You can put the description here and use a call to action button here or even promote a special offer.

When this descriptive sitelinks are used, which many companies did when they became available, the CTR for branded links become significantly higher. Not only the companies were able to supply more information to the clients but they were able to actually gain ad ranking on the display page. The ad captured much more space and also the ad looked much more relevant to the search query as well.

Some major points which you should remember while utilising these links are:

  • Use call to action as much as you can. This is a great way to move traffic to your site’s internal pages directly which are more relevant.
  • Use information to entice users more, like free shipping or discounts.
  • Consider each site link as a different ad or an ad inside another ad. With each sitelink being described, you can gain from multiple ads.
  • Run tests regularly. Use this Pauline Jokober’s article and audit your sitelinks. This way you can know what is working and what needs a tweak.

Sitelinks can give the users much more information about your site and make them land on the exact page which has the things they want. When more information comes with ad, the user likes it more. We all should ideally be using this feature, shouldn’t we?

 

Three No-Brainer Ways to Optimize Your E-Commerce Site

By | eCommerce Marketing, eCommerce SEO

Optimizing your e-commerce site to drive more business there is an integral part of creating a thriving e-commerce business. Taking these three ‘no-brainer’ steps will ensure you’re making the most of your site’s traffic potential and leading customers toward the conversion you want.

Think Locally and Update Your Meta TagMeta tags help search engines understand what your site is about and how to place your site in search results. Make sure you’re clear on what a ‘meta tag’ does and why it’s important. Consider carving out some time to draft a concise, short description, complete with keywords.

If you haven’t already done so, make sure your meta tag includes what region or major metropolitan area the site is located in. For Google, knowing where a site is located helps differentiate how to index that site in ranking. Including the region or area your business is based in creates a human element for a potential customer, and this adds credence they’re going to do business with a site serviced by actual people. Sites that include their region fair better in search results, so they have the potential for increased business through local customers. For most sites, you can updated meta tags by doing one of the following:

  1. Select ‘Tools’ and then ‘Meta Tags’
  2. Select ‘Format’ and then ‘Page Property’
  3. Use a plug-in, like ‘Add Meta Tags’

ecommerce-optimization

Consider Mobile Design and Content

Most people are viewing your e-commerce site on a mobile device. If you make them work to find the information they need, chances are, they’ll leave the site fast. Many people still choose to think of mobile as a secondary part of optimizing their e-commerce sites, but this is one of the most costly mistakes you can make. So, one of the best use of time and money in optimizing your site is considering every facet of how that site shores up on a mobile device.

There are certain steps you must take to optimize for mobile:

1.Make sure your site can direct visitors to the mobile version. You should design your site so that if a consumer’s on a mobile device, they’re directed to the mobile version, ensuring they have a better user experience for their device. This is particularly crucial for an e-commerce site, where conversion is well-suited to a mobile site design, since the primary purpose is to click through to a cart for a product or service.

2. Bring the branding elements from your main site to the mobile site. It creates user confusion if the format, font or color choices are disparate from the main site. Many times, businesses focus on function forgetting form. They skimp on design elements and risk losing customers because their brand message is no longer clear. Instead, focus on a more streamlined, simple design. Keep sentences short and concise, font size larger and limit contact forms or flash elements, and highlight call to action buttons. In fact, doing so for your main site won’t hurt either.

Keyword Rich Content Counts

It’s tempting to overload your site with keywords. But resist the temptation. You should focus on five keywords for your brand and about two to three long-tail keywords for each page. This helps Google know that the site is legitimate and not spam. It helps the site rank faster and allows Google to index each page properly, according to keywords used.

If you take just these steps, you’ve set a sound foundation toward a sales generating s-commerce site. Paying close attention to your mobile design and content, your meta descriptions and well-researched keyword will help drive the traffic you want to your site for increased sales.

InternetMarketing

 

Track your Customers with Google AdWords Conversion

By | Paid Advertising Social Media, Pay Per Click, Pay per click Advertising

Build-Successful-PPC-Campaigns

Google, has become the favorite search engine of every web-user. Any questions or queries that pops up in our mind, we probably don’t even waste a single second to ‘Google it out’.

Google It out, has become a phrase that is happily enchanted by millions living on this universe. Of course is it the strongest of all other search engines. It seems to have captured our minds and souls. With so much fame already in its bucket Google AdWords recently announced the launch of Flexible Conversion Counting. Well you can imagine how pro-actively is this new launch going to rule the world of Internet marketing.

Flexible Conversion Counting, is relatively a new form of conversion that permits advertisers to determine the types of conversions that are the most profitable for their business.

This has significantly changed the manner in which conversions appear in the interface of AdWords. For example- Conversions (1-per-click) changed to ‘Converted Clicks’ and conversions (many-per-click) changed to ‘Conversions’.

Flexible Conversion Counting, is going to give a new platform for the advertisers to revise or rethink that which conversion perfectly suits the requirements of their business. While you take a look at the latest types of conversions that AdWords have brought, in this blog we see also take a dive into what types of conversions should you be using and why.

The conversions listed below have been divided into three broad categories- Hard Conversion, Estimated Conversion And Percent-Of-Conversions

1) Hard Conversion Types

They are basically hard numbers, bottom-line numbers and the numbers that you have been consistently been reporting on. Tracking is set up appropriately, after analyzing all of your conversions.

Converted Clicks

This indicates that how many clicks did you receive in one or more conversion actions. To avoid confusion, different conversions column are created for counting the actual number of conversions. The number of converted clicks gives you a fine idea about how many consumers are you likely to draw.

Let’s say for an example that a web-user clicked on your online advertisement and bought two goods. In this case you will see only one converted click in the column, anyhow you will see two separate conversions in the conversions column. So in this way converted clicks are of great help in tracking leads when the same consumer purchases more than one good, that perhaps serves no substantial value to your business.

Conversions

This particular column helps advertisers estimate the sum of conversions among all conversion actions. This type also makes a note of which method of counting have you chosen for your conversions, as it is believed to affect the number of conversions that are showcased in the column.

Phone Call Conversions

All those who own a set up for call extensions, their phone call conversions column will highlight the total number of calls that went on for longer duration than they might have mentioned in particular call extension. Make sure that you have access to a Google call forwarding number so that Google can easily trace your call extensions.

2) Estimated Conversion Types

Comparatively they are pretty new sort of conversions brought by Goggle and work on estimated data. You would not require any other additional conversion tracking to review these conversion types since they reckon upon Google’s reliable tracking systems, they successfully give more accurate details about consumer behavior.

Estimated Cross-Device Conversions

These types of conversions happen when a consumer clicks on an ad through one device and later switches to a different device or browser. This conversion type gives you the opportunity to witness how your advertisements affect conversions that take place over diverse devices as well as browsers.

You will not have to promote your ads on various devices to draw consumers to this column since it relies on how the web-users complete the conversion.

If you wish to develop a better understanding about the behavior of your consumers and get a hassle-free way to reach them, then this conversion type is the most suited for you. It would be no surprise if you are this encouraged by this type that you even begin advertising on cell phones.

Estimated Total Conversions

It is perhaps the finest estimate of the sum of conversions run by AdWords. This would consist of estimated cross-device conversions, conversions (previously called as many-per-click) and also phone call conversions. Every advertiser has the curiosity to know the returns on investment that they receive. So by using the conversion type you can derive all the information about ROI and further take more valuable decisions in terms of allocating the budget.

3) Percent-Of Conversion Types

More than often advertisers tend to optimize and adjust bids by taking some percent of these conversions. But it is seen that many advertisers do not trust this criteria, however gradually they will realize their importance and utilize them when need be.

Click-Assisted Conversions

It is widely used for search campaigns. It is actually a calculation of conversions that are counted by the keywords that lured the consumers to one or more assist clicks. Thinking what assist clicks are? They are the total number of clicks that are received by a keyword before the conversion takes place and the last click is likely to be excluded.

So as to adjust the bids and budget, an advertiser would ideally take into consideration nearly 50-80% of their assisted clicks.

Impression-Assisted Conversions

It helps in gaining the information about total number of conversions fostered by a keyword to assist impressions before the last click. It is almost similar to click-assisted conversions, the only notable difference is that it depends more on assist impressions in-spite of relying on assist clicks.

It enables the advertisers to understand the aspects that lead the user to perform an expected action.

View-through Conversions

This type of conversion takes place while a consumer is looking at your images or wealthy media advertisement prior to converting, but never really clicks on the ad. If later any such consumer converts, this would count their conversions and mark them as View-through conversions.

These conversions would on their own eliminate conversions from the visitors who have also clicked on the search ads posted by you.

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SEO & User Experience – A Happy Marriage

By | Search Engine Optimization, SEO, SEO Company

One of the things which I ran after during this whole SEO and instructional engineering career was to couple SEO aspects with aesthetics aka user experience. This means you need to think beyond the Google spider and think about ranking and traffic and happy users.

Every SEO campaign must take care of the objective of the site while being adaptive in gaining organic visibility. SEO is becoming much more obsessed with satisfying the end user than the Google bot.

However, the bot is still important and you need to listen to it and satisfy it. Thus there are times when you need to make deal. The bot needs to be satisfied without making the site unusable. So, the million dollar question is, where do we draw the line?

Do we really need that line? Probably no.

SEO, Meet Usability….

It might look difficult to blend SEO tricks and recommendations with best user experience but once this is done, the SEO and the site will be simply invincible.

There are a few factors which we work on, continuously, while working on sites for our clients. I have tried to list those factors here.

Issue

We need content above the fold, or the screen portion which is visible without scrolling, but that will push other important things like the products or services we offer below the fold. We can make the bot happy with the contents above the fold but what if it makes the user scroll a lot to find the products? Will he be happy?

Solution

Using tabs or the expanding element of HTML can help. You can choose to show a little amount of text to the user by default and keep your products listing above the fold as well. The interested reader can click on the [read more] or [+] to expand and see the full text.

This is not a black hat trick, if you are openly using an expanding function which is visible to the search engines, then you shouldn’t have any worries. However, avoid using framed texts, these texts aren’t visible to the bot.

Issue

Instead of posting a very lengthy text, we might want to make it more entertaining and post a video instead.

Solution

Video is a nice idea but you shouldn’t venture there without a plan. You should use every trick in the urn for video SEO. Proper titles, optimised descriptions, transcriptions or subtitles, video schema, placement and sharing them on video sharing sites, video sitemap and many other things to take care of before you can really go for it.

Now the transcript the we are talking about, place the same in an expandable area. This way, you can take care of the positioning issue. You can even place the transcription under the fold. It will not hamper your SEO much while improving the user experience by a good degree.

Issue

The PDF we keep on the site are many but we need to keep them easily accessible as users likes to read and print them while on the go.

Solution

PDF pages are not as good as the HTML pages when it comes to SEO. This is why so many SEO workers simply hate PDF pages on the site (while adoring it for off-page activities). PDFs don’t allow much tracking codes in them and thus we lose track of the traffic. However, PDF pages rank so very well.

If the “convert them to HTML” option is stuck down, make sure that they are optimised. They should have proper tiles and they should have embedded link to the site and also have relevant content.

Best thing is to keep a HTML version of those pages and then place a link to the PDF file on that page for the mobile crowd. The HTML version will take a few weeks but it will start ranking as well and will overtake the PDF version in ranking and using the robots.txt file, we can actually block the PDF which will then become duplicate.

Issue

Our client was required to keep a large chunk of ‘disclaimer’ texts, which was the very same, and this disclaimer needs to appear on many pages, as per the lawyer has told him. Now, Matt Cutts have said that this type of duplicate content shouldn’t harm the site and thus the notice should cause no big news.

While it is tempting to believe him about the point, Google also speak a lot about content quality. If the disclaimer texts make up a good portion of the total text on those pages then we are having a few pages with highly duplicated content.

Solution

Make the text available as an image. The purpose is served, the lawyers are happy and still we are not publishing any duplicate text.

SEO & Usability Can Coexist Happily

These are only a few very direct issues where we could blend SEO and user experience nicely. It doesn’t solve every problem but it proves that they can happily coexist. However, you need to be creative and think for unique solution. For every situation, there is a solution and I am sure of this.

You need to have the inputs from SEO managers and the user experience designers, make them sit together and do a little brainstorming. If there is a will, for sure there is a way.

One of the things which I ran after during this whole SEO and instructional engineering career was to couple SEO aspects with aesthetics aka user experience. This means you need to think beyond the Google spider and think about ranking and traffic and happy users.

Every SEO campaign must take care of the objective of the site while being adaptive in gaining organic visibility. SEO is becoming much more obsessed with satisfying the end user than the Google bot.

However, the bot is still important and you need to listen to it and satisfy it. Thus there are times when you need to make deal. The bot needs to be satisfied without making the site unusable. So, the million dollar question is, where do we draw the line?

Do we really need that line? Probably no.

SEO, Meet Usability

It might look difficult to blend SEO tricks and recommendations with best user experience but once this is done, the SEO and the site will be simply invincible.

There are a few factors which we work on, continuously, while working on sites for our clients. I have tried to list those factors here.

Issue

We need content above the fold, or the screen portion which is visible without scrolling, but that will push other important things like the products or services we offer below the fold. We can make the bot happy with the contents above the fold but what if it makes the user scroll a lot to find the products? Will he be happy?

Solution

Using tabs or the expanding element of HTML can help. You can choose to show a little amount of text to the user by default and keep your products listing above the fold as well. The interested reader can click on the [read more] or [+] to expand and see the full text.

This is not a black hat trick, if you are openly using an expanding function which is visible to the search engines, then you shouldn’t have any worries. However, avoid using framed texts, these texts aren’t visible to the bot.

Issue

Instead of posting a very lengthy text, we might want to make it more entertaining and post a video instead.

Solution

Video is a nice idea but you shouldn’t venture there without a plan. You should use every trick in the urn for video SEO. Proper titles, optimised descriptions, transcriptions or subtitles, video schema, placement and sharing them on video sharing sites, video sitemap and many other things to take care of before you can really go for it.

Now the transcript the we are talking about, place the same in an expandable area. This way, you can take care of the positioning issue. You can even place the transcription under the fold. It will not hamper your SEO much while improving the user experience by a good degree.

Issue

The PDF we keep on the site are many but we need to keep them easily accessible as users likes to read and print them while on the go.

Solution

PDF pages are not as good as the HTML pages when it comes to SEO. This is why so many SEO workers simply hate PDF pages on the site (while adoring it for off-page activities). PDFs don’t allow much tracking codes in them and thus we lose track of the traffic. However, PDF pages rank so very well.

If the “convert them to HTML” option is stuck down, make sure that they are optimised. They should have proper tiles and they should have embedded link to the site and also have relevant content.

Best thing is to keep a HTML version of those pages and then place a link to the PDF file on that page for the mobile crowd. The HTML version will take a few weeks but it will start ranking as well and will overtake the PDF version in ranking and using the robots.txt file, we can actually block the PDF which will then become duplicate.

Issue

Our client was required to keep a large chunk of ‘disclaimer’ texts, which was the very same, and this disclaimer needs to appear on many pages, as per the lawyer has told him. Now, Matt Cutts have said that this type of duplicate content shouldn’t harm the site and thus the notice should cause no big news.

While it is tempting to believe him about the point, Google also speak a lot about content quality. If the disclaimer texts make up a good portion of the total text on those pages then we are having a few pages with highly duplicated content.

Solution

Make the text available as an image. The purpose is served, the lawyers are happy and still we are not publishing any duplicate text.

SEO & Usability Can Coexist Happily

These are only a few very direct issues where we could blend SEO and user experience nicely. It doesn’t solve every problem but it proves that they can happily coexist. However, you need to be creative and think for unique solution. For every situation, there is a solution and I am sure of this.

You need to have the inputs from SEO managers and the user experience designers, make them sit together and do a little brainstorming. If there is a will, for sure there is a way.

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