Tag: Google

3 Ways to Use Google AdWords to Help Your SEO

3 ways to use Google AdWords to Help your SEO

There are a lot of tools out there to help you with your on-page SEO. We use many of these tools here. But there’s one tool that gives you the ability to see what Google sees in terms of keyword rankings and search volume. That tool is AdWords. AdWords is Google’s main driver of revenue, and in it, they give their buyers insights that Analytics and Webmaster Tools doesn’t offer.

We’ll discuss how to use AdWords to help your on page SEO and your overall SEO strategy. We will take a look at both the paid and “free” things that AdWords offers to help you make the right choices to drive traffic to your website.

Use the Keyword Planner

The Keyword Planner is undoubtedly the best tool out there to help you track the phrases that have the best ROI for your AdWords spend. What people may not use if for, but should, is to help them plan the targeted SEO keywords on their page.

For example, if you’re looking to have a page rank for “graphic t-shirts” you might find that the search volume is through the roof, and the cost-per-click is low. This would tell you that a lot of people search for something and that it takes a lot of clicks to get a sale from this.

In SEO terms it means, this phrase is going to be hard to rank for, and your bounce rate will probably be high. Using the keyword planner you can find terms that might be more applicable to the exact product you’re selling. While the traffic volumes may be lower, the conversion rate would go up as it’s more specific to your searcher’s needs.

Find Your Easy Wins

By finding terms that are the most focused on user intent and directing them to pages that are specific to that intent, the ability to have a lower cost-per-acquisition can get a lot easier. AdWords gives you the ability to quickly try different phrases that match the optimal intent of a potential buyer without having to wait for organic rankings to happen.

Going back to the t-shirt example, if you specialize in humorous t-shirts, instead of using the term “funny graphic t-shirts” using several specific long-tail phrases will help you find which of them lead to the most sales. Once you have that, optimizing your page against the winning term will mean your organic rankings for that will be more effective for sales.

Test Quickly, Test Often

It’s hard to A/B test your SEO strategy quickly. Because of the amount of time that it takes for pages or whole websites to rank, knowing which language will have the best outcome can take months if not years. AdWords give you some unique advantages to do this.

You can have 4 ads in an ad group all pointing to one page or product. You can then have other experiments in terms of the page’s language, the ad text, call-to-action, etc. that can all be running simultaneously. You’ll get your answers to what is working and what is not much faster than through organic means.

The ability to test is crucial to finding your optimal language and on-page SEO strategy. This, in-turn, is crucial to creating your optimal outcome in terms of lead generation and sales.

Conclusion

While the keyword planner is great starting resource, leveraging the full capabilities of Google AdWords is a fast and effective tool to building the best website you can for your goals. Buying AdWords obviously has a cost associated with it, but, so does any marketing activity. The difference between AdWords and other marketing activities is that you can see the results faster, and when you’re done,  you can just shut it down.

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How to Get Your Website to Rank in Google Search – Part Two

Beyond the Core SEO Signals

Think of the core signals listed in Part One as the broad picture signals of what it takes to get your website to rank: relevancy, popularity, authority, and technical SEO. Within each signal, there are smaller factors that provide an opportunity to vastly improve your website. Part Two below will get into the nitty-gritty details of what it takes to rank.

On-Site Factors

Cleaning up the on-page issues of the website is probably the best place to start. After all, you want to leave a good impression on your visitors. It doesn’t matter how good the off page optimization is if you can’t convert your website visitors into customers.

Google Wants Unique Content

The old saying goes, “Content is King!”

Google loves a website with a lot of great content. Remember to keep it relevant and accurate to the searcher’s query. Don’t stuff unnecessary keywords for products or services you don’t offer in hopes of getting more traffic. That’s considered spamming and against Google’s best practices.

Quality content can be hard to come by, so do research on your competitors who rank well to see what works for them. That can help inspire creativity for your content, but you have to make sure your content is unique. That is the biggest factor for any content you place on your website.

DO NOT USE another website’s content. Google has indexed millions of web pages and can cross-check content very quickly. If the website crawlers read content on your site that was first published elsewhere, Google will likely reduce your page rank in favor of the original owner.

Don’t skip out on how much content you place on your website either. Content length is a big factor. That doesn’t mean every page you have needs to be crammed with content. But, if you have quality content that is longer than your competition’s, Google will probably give your site a boost.

Unique On-Page Content Site-Wide

This is something that seems to be missing on a lot of websites – it’s actually more common to see websites with duplicate content throughout the entire site. This won’t necessarily result in a penalty from Google because you are only duplicating your own content. However, this may give Google the impression that your website is lacking quality. If your content is unique sitewide, this could be the difference between where you and your competition rank.

For example, if your company has multiple locations, you can create additional web pages for each city you serve. You should not simply copy and paste the same content on all the city pages but make each page unique to that specific city, while still delivering the same message your consumers will need to satisfy their search across each page.

Keywords

Keyword rich content is crucial.

When writing your content, do keyword research to find out what searchers use to find your product or service. There are many tools that you can utilize to help the process. Keyword.io is a useful tool to see what keywords are used across the web. Just place your potential keyword in the search bar and the view the results. This can help you come up with new keywords and phrases to add to your content.

The right keywords are also very important.

It is very common for business owners use the wrong keywords for what users are searching. Be careful when you optimize based on your knowledge. Being the authority in your industry, you probably know the industry jargon. Don’t focus on the keyword you think you should optimize for, focus on what the research says that users search for, because if your potential client base doesn’t know your keyword, then they probably won’t search for it.

You can even try typing a keyword into the Google search bar and see what comes up from auto-suggest. This is a useful tool to see what keywords searchers have actually used in Google.

Be careful with over optimizing though. Although it is important write content that is easily read and indexed by crawlers, the trick is to write meaningful content that is keyword rich and written for humans. This means writing content that is a happy medium between being easy for the user to read and understand versus optimizing for Google bot crawlers.

Video

Video is an excellent way to add content to your website. It creates a visual opportunity to get your message to the website visitors without the user having to read. Unfortunately, most people skim content – but utilizing video can combat a user’s natural urge to skim.

Optimizing your videos properly can help with search ranking as well. YouTube is owned by Google, so Google tends to prioritize Youtube videos over other video sharing platforms. Creating a YouTube channel for all your videos creates an additional resource for your web visitors that can enhance their experience.

Google has shown favoritism to websites with video links embedded in their web pages. An increase in your time spent on site by users watching a video shows Google that your website provides a value to web users.

Dwell Time and Click Through Rate

Time on site was touched on earlier, but here we can dive into the details. Remember how an increased bounce rate can reduce rank? The opposite can be said as it relates to time on site. Depending on your industry, time on site is a good thing. It creates relevancy signals to Google, while potentially adding to your website authority. Google recognizes long dwell times on sites as an indicator of a satisfactory user experience.

A high Click Through Rate (CTR) from the search page to your website suggests to Google that the information on your website is worthwhile. More clicks to your website compared to how often your competitor’s website is clicked in similar searches indicate quality. This is a trust signal Google uses to determine the value of the information provided onsite.

These are factors that are impacted by website content and overall user experience.

Security

This is a ranking factor that Google has admitted to using.

In an effort to improve the privacy and security of web searchers, Google has been reducing the search rank results for websites that lack the SSL certificate. Their end goal is to have all sites with an HTTPS display higher than those without. If your website needs the SSL certificate, you can purchase, activate, and install the certificate at a low cost. The benefits outweigh not paying the fee because you’ve created a trust factor for Google that offers a better user experience to your customers, which results in improved website performance.

Keyword in Root Domain

This is a great way to start off your website with a strong ranking signal. The downside is that most businesses choose their name as the domain, and it is understandable why. But, if you can purchase a domain with your keyword included, then you have an edge on the competition.

For example, let’s compare West Marine and Overton’s. Both companies provide products for boating and maritime recreation.

Westmarine has the domain www.westmarine.com and Overton’s is www.overtons.com.

Both URLs are the company name, but for the example, this will show how important the keyword in the domain can be.

Searching for marine products and boating products provides a significant variation in results, yet they are both keywords that can be used interchangeably.

For the search term “boating products,” Overton’s is number one, but West Marine is third.

The results show that for the term marine products, Overton’s is nowhere on the first page, and West Marine is second.

 

 

As you can see on the left image, Overton’s failed to place on the marine products page but each company listed shows marine in their name. This is a prime example of how having a properly placed keyword in the main domain URL can lead to an improved search result.

If you are asking, “how did West Marine rank for boating products?”

This likely comes down to relevancy, authority, and popularity. Marine products are boating products. Overton’s didn’t show for marine products because the competition for that key term was too strong.

Even though it is not an exact match, if the domain was www.overtonsboating.com, then there is a chance the keyword boating could boost the site for a marine-related search. The URL www.overtonsmarine.com would almost certainly receive more domain authority in a search query.

Companies that offer services can really take advantage of this. A plumber with the URL www.raleighplumbers.com has a solid chance that their website will rank for the search term, “Raleigh plumbers.” This is going to be competitive domain and will probably cost a little extra to purchase, but it is worth the cost.

Page Load Speed

The slower a web page loads and takes to display to the visitor, the more likely you are to lose that potential customer. Not only do you lose a customer, but over time this will increase your website’s bounce rate. This is a bad signal to Google. If your visitors are leaving quickly, this indicates to Google that the website is irrelevant to the keyword search or there is a poor user experience after a searcher clicks through to the website. Either way, this will hurt your rank.

Additionally, Google tests website speed on their own. You can be sure they take note of slow load speeds and adjust rank accordingly. That is why it is crucial to make sure all aspects of your website are tidy and fast. From HTML code to any plugins and images, it is essential to reduce the amount of data that has to load when a page opens.

One way to improve page loading speed is to compress images and other large files. Google’s Page Speed Insights is a good place to test your page’s speed. Google even offers tips on how to decrease your load time. Download the compressed files and upload to their correct location in your FTP server.

Responsive Web Design

Mobile traffic continues to grow as the primary search traffic. That is why it is essential to have a website with responsive design. This means that your website will provide a seamless, easy to use interface on mobile, just like a desktop. Basically, your website reacts to the type of device used and displays accordingly.

Google is shifting to a Mobile First index format, which means rankings could be displayed based on mobile instead of desktop versions. If your website doesn’t have a mobile design, this could negatively impact your SERP rank. If your website is not mobile friendly, then it is time for a redesign.

RankBrain and User Experience Signals are Key to High Search Rank

Google uses RankBrain as a way to monitor user patterns when interacting with search results. The data is collected and helps to analyze the behavior of searchers. If feedback on your website is positive, then Google may place your website higher in the SERP. If the data points to a poor user experience from the examples listed above, then you can expect to fall below your competition.

Let Us Talk about Link Building for a Bit

There aren’t many people who truly enjoy link building, but those that do have formulated ways to make the process work for them. Their success is usually through providing quality content that someone else values and wants to share or by trial and error link building. The process is arduous but necessary to help elevate your website’s rank.

Be sure to use strong anchor text for links built on and to your site from other sources. Strong backlink profiles have been shown to provide certain websites with a boost over others in the SERP rank. It is time-consuming and sometimes the value of a specific link doesn’t seem worth the time it took to get it.

Focus on creating quality backlinks from sources that are trusted, but also can use your help. Guest blogging is a great way to get a high authority link to your content. Reach out to a few sources and see how they respond. If they are enthusiastic about your contribution, they may have found a fountain of links that you can gain over time. Just be professional and avoid spammy tactics.

Improve Your Website Google Search Ranking

The digital marketing professionals of TheeDesign can optimize your website to improve search ranking, thus allowing you to the increase in sales opportunities.

Updating your website with valuable content, repairing technical issues, and providing a better overall experience for the user, offers the best chance to increase your visibility in the Google search results. So many factors are at play, that unless you have the support of a qualified marketing team, you are probably missing out on several key areas for a better ranking. Utilizing the expertise of digital marketers who understand the intricacies of how Google applies rank factors will free you up to focus on what matters: running your business.

Contact the internet marketing professionals at TheeDesign in Raleigh, NC at 919-341-8901 or schedule a consultation to find out how your business can benefit from strategic video marketing.

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What Google Chrome Ad Blocking Means for Your Business

On February 15, 2018, Google added a feature to the Chrome browser that allows users to block especially disruptive and annoying advertisements from websites. The intent of Google’s ad blocking software is to improve the user experience, keeping users from having to deal with intrusive and frustrating advertisements while they are online. Though the concept of comprehensive ad blocking is appealing, the reality has raised some serious concerns for other businesses. Google’s continuously growing power over online ad revenue is worrisome for many companies, and ad blocking could have a significant impact on businesses around the world.

How Does Google Chrome Decide What to Block?

Google is basing its ad blocking criteria on the Better Ads Standards set forward by the Coalition for Better Ads, a group created by companies and trade associations interested in improving the ad experience for consumers. Google’s blocker takes the qualities in online advertisements that frustrate people and filters out ads with those qualities. Some of the frustrating attributes that Google blocks are video ads that play at an obnoxious volume, blinking display ads, popups with exit buttons that are difficult to locate, and prestitial ads that cover the majority of a webpage and make it difficult for people to see the content.

Google is not, however, blocking anchor ads (ads that stay anchored on the screen and do not move as you scroll through the page). Anchor ads can be on the top or bottom of the screen. According to a survey of 25,000 internet users, approximately 85 percent of mobile users reported that anchor ads did not bother them.

How Does the Evaluation Work?

Google gives websites passing, warning, or failing grades. The grades are based on the percentage of people who had poor experiences on the site and on whether the sites adhere to the Better Ads Standards. A site receives a failing grade if 7.5 percent of page viewers had poor experiences on the site in the first two months of the program, 5 percent in the four months following, and 2.5 percent after that.

You can view grade assessments online through Google’s Ad Experience Report. If a site receives notice of a violation, it has 30 days to fix it before Chrome will begin blocking ads on the site.

What Happens When a Site Receives a Failing Grade?

Once a site receives a failing grade, Chrome will begin blocking ads using a filtering system. First, Chrome’s ad filter checks whether the URL the user is visiting is from a site that has passed the Better Ads Standards. If the site has failed, Chrome then checks the network requests for URL patterns that are known to be related ad content. These requests can be for items such as JavaScript or images. If the one of the network requests matches one of the list of ad-related URLs, Chrome will block the advertisement from appearing on the page.

Once an advertisement has been blocked, users on the site will receive a notification on their screen saying that ads have been blocked and asking them if they want to “allow ads on this site.” The user then can choose if they want to see the advertisements.

Common Concerns About Chrome’s Ad Blocking

While many might feel that Google’s ad filtering efforts are completely legitimate and helpful to the user, there are some compelling arguments against Google taking ad blocking into its own hands.

One Company Having Too Much Sway

Many businesses are concerned about one company having so much control over what users see online. Yes, Google is basing their filtering criteria the the Better Ads Standards, but the creators of these standards are the Coalition for Better Ads, a group where Google holds significant sway. In fact, Google led the research and had a considerable influence over the study that led to the creation of the Better Ads Standards. Many of the companies that are also in the Coalition for Better Ads have reported that Google dominated the creation of the ad blocking criteria and find it suspicious that the majority of Google’s ad revenue comes from methods that are not banned by the Better Ads Standards. Google already has a massive impact on online searches, and this added control over the internet is worrisome for businesses all over the world.

The Decision-Making Process Is Too Black and White

Google’s ad blocking software requires have strict guidelines to follow. In the system as it has beens set up, the filtering process is a straightforward practice without any room for ads that may technically violate the Better Ads Standards but should not be filtered. Many businesses are worried that the strict filtering guidelines may lead to some advertisements being blocked that are not annoying or offensive to users. Various companies have requested that Google create an appeals process to give businesses the opportunity to state their cases if they believe that their advertisements have been blocked unfairly. So far, Google has not responded.

Future Impact of the Chrome Ad Blocking Feature

It is still unclear exactly how much of an impact Google Chrome’s ad blocking feature will have on the internet, user experience, and other businesses. The concerns that many businesses have are significant, but it is difficult to determine whether they are true threats so soon after the software has been created. If the feature succeeds in creating an online environment that is easier and more appealing to users, however, it could be an overall improvement for businesses and users alike.

Contact the PPC Professionals at TheeDesign

If you’re worried that your business might be impacted by Chrome’s ad filtering, contact TheeDesign today. Our PPC professionals can make sure that your remarketing ads meet the Better Ads Standards.Contact our pay-per-click specialists in Raleigh, NC at 919-341-8901 or schedule a complimentary consultation.

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