Category Archives: Content Creation
Content marketing, as part of a wider strategy, can make a world of difference to any business. It must, however, be done correctly. It’s easy to sign up to Facebook and anyone can start a YouTube channel – it’s what you do with them that counts.
The ever-evolving commercial landscape requires more thought from businesses than ever before, but that isn’t to say it has to be difficult to get attention. It’s now all about earning the attention of your target audience, not buying it or forcing it. This is achieved with the provision of high quality content.
What constitutes high quality content?
Content is a pretty broad term. In this context, it basically covers anything you’re able to create and publish in order to attract the attention of consumers. This is often text-based – articles, studies, news stories – but it also includes things like infographics, videos and even podcasts.
Why is content so important now?
People don’t respond well to pushy selling techniques anymore. While in the past, this was how things were done, technology – particularly the advancements of the Internet and mobile devices – has changed the way consumers want and need to interact with the businesses they choose to give their money to. Also, the web has led to a significant rise in the number of start-ups, making it even more difficult for small businesses to stand out among the competition.
Content must be relevant
Content marketing is all about reaching your target audience on their level. It’s about providing them with material they’ll find useful, informative and entertaining – and this needs to be done consistently to ensure attention is maintained.
Start by looking at the members of your target audience – what do they want and need? Make sure the content you create is original, accurate and, above all, relevant. A news piece on medical supplies won’t necessarily be of any interest to someone who’s interested in IT support. Try instead to cover the latest goings-on in the world of computer technology.
To ensure the content you create is useful, put yourself in the consumer’s shoes – what questions do they want answering? If you’re able to help them with an informative article, they’re much more likely to come back at a later date.
The importance of accuracy
Anything you publish online will be available for viewing across the whole world, so it’s important to get it right. For a start, inaccuracies can be embarrassing and can cause irreparable damage to a business’s reputation. This is particularly true when it comes to grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. As many high profile cases have shown, people will lose trust in a brand if they come across as unprofessional by making simple mistakes – and seeing as a company’s website is the first port of call for most info-hungry consumers, this is especially important online.
Inaccuracies can also cause legal issues for a site owner. For example, if a piece of text puts an individual, a business, or an organization in a bad light based on unverifiable information, lengthy and costly legal issues could follow.
Overall, using content to entice customers to your business is not just a shrewd move; it’s almost become a necessity. The use of traditional methods – or outbound marketing – simply won’t be enough to make a significant difference these days, especially without a considerable amount of money being thrown at it. Just take a look at the online activity of the world’s major companies. While they may all still use billboards and TV advertisements, most complete their strategies with social media profiles and viral video content – and the focus towards such methods is rapidly shifting.
Rebecca works for Direct Content, a company specializing in high quality content for businesses of all sizes. The firm, which is based in Cheshire, also provides content for a number of SEO consultancies and internet marketing agencies. More information can be found at http://www.directcontent.co.uk/.
Stickiness: It’s a word that website owners dream of either pleasantly or in nightmares. The aim of any good site is to get traffic in and then convert those surfing by in to a community of regular users. For someone with an internet addiction (I think I may well fall in this category) then the presence of stickiness can also be a problem.
I work as a copywriter for online retailer The Watch Hut, so trying to attract repeated viewings of sections of the site is my stock in trade. However, in spite of my line of work, I’m a borderline internet addict. It’s not hyperbole; it genuinely has become a dependency. I check the BBC News site from my phone before I even get out of bed in a morning and I check Facebook before I sleep. So what do these sites have in common, and how can their underlying stickiness be replicated?
The common thread running through these is that they have content that creates a connection with the reader by providing them with information of interest. In the case of the BBC, this is a mix of customisable news and human interest stories. Facebook reverses this formula.
Whilst many of the news organizations will post content and many people will follow this, the core of the content is the information from family and friends and people who you wish were your friends such as the celebrities, causes and brands that you follow. Facebook in particular has become successful through this and has kept its costs low. After all, it isn’t paying journalists to write this great content. It is relying on your friends to be interesting enough to attract advertisers. Your work is making Mark Zuckerberg a very rich man
It’s not just the content that we crave in stickiness, what we are really addicted to is the update. Newspapers and social media have an inbuilt advantage here in that they able to use information that is happening in the world around them to update their readers.
Let’s use a non web analogy to illustrate this. Say you are watching Sky News or its American sister station, Fox News. The stickiness is generated in large part by the “Breaking News” banners that scroll across the screen for even quite unimportant stories. You are drawn in by the immediacy of the content, not by the content itself.
Now let’s go back to Facebook. Internet addicts like me can pass time commenting on the mix of pictures and status updates. We have a similar reaction to the flashing of the notification banner that we do to the breaking news strap. We click it and look at the “breaking news” from our friends
The behavior is hard wired in to our psyche. Back when we were smart chimps, knowing where predators where, was the exact information we needed. We may have evolved a little, but the ability to profit, either financially or socially from being the first person to know is still with us.
So how can you use these techniques in building your site? After all, you are unlikely to have huge resources.
1.) Harness what you do know:
In the case of the company I work for, retailer The Watch Hut, we have a significant following of people who are interested in elements of the watches we sell. Our customers tend to be interested in fashion, or see a designer watch as a status symbol. We use our connections with our suppliers to update customers on celebrities who have been seen wearing the items, or in the case of the more male oriented ranges, the sports with which the watchmaker is associated.
We also report the latest trends from trade and fashion shows to our clients, particularly if something unusual is coming on sale shortly.
Unusual items also encourage sharing, which is a particularly important technique in creating identity online. Again, this is wired to our culture. If we are making friends, then an introduction from a existing friend is more likely to be successful in joining a group than simply walking up to them and saying hi.
2.) Encourage feedback:
Seeking to improve social signals we built our Facebook page as a means of encouraging and welcoming comments from customers past, present and future. By creating this space we are effectively carving out a little path of neurons that can be used to retarget those who we regularly interact and subsequently their friends in to regarding us as a company they would like to do business with. Whilst it would be uneconomic to take the bricks and mortar real estate we can buy the “mental real estate” of our customer base. These frequent visitors are often amongst the stickiest and our greatest promoters.
The future will probably bring with it more video. Video is great for creating sticky content as it engages the viewer on a more passive level. People are usually in a “lean back” relaxed position when watching video. This relaxation makes it easier for content to be accepted. If nothing else, the dwell time on each page will typically increase – great for marketing, but likely to bring even more pain to myself and fellow internet addicts.
Outsourcing has become a popular choice among many business owners worldwide and it is because of the great advantages outsourcing can offer a business.
From cutting down on operational costs and having access to greater knowledge, to streamlining businesses processes and increasing internal business productivity, outsourcing has proved to be an effecting tool for many companies and businesses.
The list of what tasks and jobs can be outsourced, is long, but below is a list of the most commonly outsourced tasks and jobs. You will find that most of these services are specialized services, requiring expertise and professional understanding in a certain, specialized field.
Information Technology (IT) Services
The outsourcing of Information Technology (IT) services has become very popular and it because of the great advantages outsourcing in this field can offer a business or company.
Having IT personal on staff can be quite expensive and, by outsourcing, it can cut costs. It also has the added benefit of having not only one or two IT employees at your disposal, but the knowledge of an entire company. Keeping up with advancing technologies are also more effective and less expensive when outsourcing.
Very few companies have a Graphic Designer on staff simply because it is not an employee they have a use for on a daily basis. Having the option to outsource graphic design services, businesses have access to a lot of talented designers at competitive prices. Another added bonus is the fact that a company can look through the portfolio of a freelancer or company and decide which styles best suits them and their companies.
What also makes outsourcing in this field so popular is the fact that a company has the choice of sticking with a tried and tested graphic designer, or looking for someone with fresher and more effective design skills. This is great for when you are looking to give your business or company a ‘visual’ makeover.
Copy Writing/Blog Writer
Having a Copy Writer or Blog Writer on staff to do tasks that come around once or twice a month, will be more expensive than outsourcing the task to a professional or to a company. There are quite a lot of freelance writers out there, and a company can choose a professional that best suits their style and needs. This gives the company more freedom in terms of content by allowing it to play around with content styles.
Outsourcing these types of tasks can be quite tricky, but asking for samples and ‘testing’ the writer, will help you decide if he or she is the right person for the job.
Not all business owners are equipped to deal with the business’s accounting and other financial needs. Outsourcing this task to another company can help to save time as well as cut down on costs. It also enables the business to have contact with a group of professionals in a field that he/she might not completely understand.
Web Developers and Web Development Companies are the type of professionals that specialize in the design and implementation of websites for example. A business needs only one website and website design, so outsourcing this once-off deal is much more cost effective.
Many smaller businesses cannot afford to have marketing team on staff twenty-four-seven and thus opt to outsource marketing and marketing related tasks. It is an effective way of getting a foot in a market and industry the business owner might not fully understand. Outsourcing to professionals in this field will allow a business to have a full marketing plan without having to use its own human resources.
Outsourcing the above services does not necessarily involve using another company or business, but freelance individuals as well.
Many services, including Graphic Design, Web Development, Copy Writing and Editing, as well as Programming and Coding, are many times outsourced to freelance professionals.
Great places to find Freelancers include institutions such as LinkedIn and Elance, to name but two examples.
Always remember to do your research before outsourcing any services to a company or professional. A portfolio of samples of work can be shown by many companies and freelancers in specialized fields such as Graphic Design and Writing services.
|Author Bio: Linda McMahon is an illustrator and writer at backofficepro. Her favorite blogs subjects are outsource and Graphic Design. She loves sharing her knowledge with others.|
If a brand wishes to survive on the Internet, then Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is truly imperative for it. SEO is a process through which a brand or company can boost its visibility in the result pages of different search engines. One of the strategies to do so is to publish SEO-based articles through which a company can promote its products or services on the Internet. Such articles also help in making a more renowned online presence and increasing traffic to your site. This makes article writing the most effective strategy of the marketing campaign online although there exists a myriad of other techniques for optimizing a Web site.
What Kind of Articles Can Work?
An article written for promoting products/services or sharing business vision or goals should be such that it makes a long-lasting impression in the minds of the readers. This can be only achieved by writing original, error-free, and relevant content. It is only such content that can trigger an interest in your business and make them feel that your business is truly genuine. It is this writing strategy that increases the chances of your site to be ranked at the top of search engine result pages. Here are some great ways for writing really effective SEO articles for attracting more traffic.
- Organic Content: This simply means writing original content that is useful and relevant. You can decide what kind of content you require if you know your targeted audience so that it becomes easy to build reliability in the minds of customers. Not only that, but also the original content encourages online crawlers to put your site ahead on result pages.
- Smart Keyword Usage: Customers can visit your site only if the search engines can spot and list it in the initial pages. This is possible only if you use well-searched keywords in your article. Keywords are the phrases that customers enter into the search box of the search engines. Therefore, these words must be present in your articles so that the search engines can find your site as per what customers have entered. However, it is a bad practice to fill your articles with repeated occurrence of keywords. This can irritate both crawlers and customers, and can spoil your reputation immediately. In order to know what keywords are in use, you can use tools such as Google Keyword.
- Keywords in Title/Meta Tags: It is vital to optimize title or meta tags with the relevant keywords that cater to the topic. The article’s title should be such that the customers come to know what kind of content they can expect in the article. The meta tag must also contain the keywords so that the search engine crawlers know what type of content the article provides. It needs to describe the information in the article. The characters that form the title are mostly limited to 60, and that the title needs to be descriptive and short. For example, if the main keyword is ‘acne treatment’, the title can be ‘5 tips for effective acne treatment’. If you take care of such rules, your site will not get penalized by search engines.
- Suitable Length: The article must not be too long or too short. Its length must have a satisfactory amount of words. If the content is too short, it seems that the article lacks proper research. On the other hand, if the article is too long, it may look exaggerated. The word count is not that vital for search engines but it will influence the number of customers visiting your site. Therefore, you need to identify the targeted audience for deciding a suitable length.
- Links: If you insert hypertext in your article, you can easily improve your visibility online. Hyperlinks form several reciprocal links from different high-quality sources. It is vital to obtain pertinent inbound links to make your site look reliable.
These are the elements you need to take care of while writing SEO articles. If they aren’t composed well, remember they will not be ranked well due to which your site won’t become popular at all. So, ensure that your articles are optimized well.
The author is a blogger and loves to write on topics related to SEO and online marketing. He is running a small campaign in his office wherein he is training people on how to ensure effective SEO after to get rid of penalty from algorithm updates.
As the year comes to an end, or when a new year has just began, most of the blogging sites are flooded with articles on new year resolutions and trends. I don’t know what we exactly gain from all this, except having an “I-Told-You-So” attitude. However, I am also sure that most of you must have read many such articles for understanding the needs and demands of the industry. And to be honest, I confess having written a few such article myself, telling people what would probably happen in 2013.
It is not very difficult to predict the upcoming trends, not because they are very easy to be predicted, but because most of them are already there. It is just that they hadn’t, until now, been able to grab the attention of the people. And, not many are groundbreaking things. However, if you have to move from all the “trending stuff” to reality (thinking about what actually the future holds), it is going to be a completely different thing.
Without beating much around the bush, I would like to proceed to the facts. Well, in that case, I think there is much more to the future of web design. E-commerce websites and enterprises will be based in video. I am not saying that this will happen in 2013 itself, but there is certainly some push for it in the market.
HTML5 is Exceptionally Easy
There is nothing new about the fact that flash has long been dead. We also understand that web development is much more than just fun. It is more of coding and development, than simply designing the website. If there is something that has changed here, it is the new standards for designing a website. HTML5 is that new standard. Designing with HTML5 is more common sense, because it tries to be more compatible with several browsers and platforms. Now, that being said, it is necessary that we understand how much can video be easier in HTML5 than in any other. It makes video easier because there isn’t a need to use embed tags for using outside plugins. In fact, it makes possible for us to host our own video and present them too. Moreover, it is also mobile compatible, which is a massive positive point in today’s time. Flash barely matters to designers and developers any more.
Branding with Videos
People have changed the way they used to make purchases earlier. Gone are the days, when an emotional commercial would induce a customer to go an buy a particular product. People no more rely on familiar advertising. People these days, look forward to be connected with the brand and its product or service. It’s more about being loyal and sharing the brand with others these days. There is also more emphasis on Internet, only because that video can be found easily in there.
Now, if you have already made your mind on making more videos, there is one valid point you should consider. Why online? If you have so many videos, why not make them ad spots for television? Although this sounds to be fair enough, there are several arguments to it. One of the prime factor why people prefer online is because of money and reach.
Moreover, you need to reach every set of audience – those using desktops as well as those using tablets and SmartPhones. People these days are using Internet not only to access some E-commerce website and buy products online, but also to find out more information. With the changing nature of web, we notice remarkable differences in the development section as well. There is more of responsive design and retina ready displays today. There’s effortless coding and consumers need effortless access to information. Videos do exactly the same. Listed below are some examples of effectively used videos.
1. Experimenting with HTML5
‘The Pathway of Smokers’ has tried experimenting with some of the ways video can be used in connection to the current surroundings. People interested in a video game that ends up with an interactive story line will definitely find it to be entertaining.
2. Video to Inform
‘Adek’ uses the video to simple show what they do, how things work and the advantages. The intro of the video will give you an idea of what they do and how to use the products offered by them.
3. Watch Your Favorite Band Play
Metropol is a good band with good visual. They have a website built entirely on HTML5 allowing the users to open up singles and watch their video. Exceptional concept is the award winning aspect for this website.
4. Effective Video Demonstration
Teehan+Lax is an establishment also uses an interactive and effective video to tell us who they are and what they do as a brand. Although it doesn’t have a great story line, you would want to rely on the headlines to get a clear idea. I say, its quite stunning.
5. Video That Explains Who They Are…
Social Design House has put ample of efforts in developing a video that helps you through the process of understanding what exactly they do to enhance your brand. Take a quick look to get the real thing.
We usually tend to forget that web design is not only focusing on the aesthetic value and quality of the web, but rather focusing on the placement and understanding of every single thing on the web. You may get ample of suggestions and designs that mesmerize you and you may also hear about the next best thing for web design. However, it is important you determine how practical those trends are going to be for your website. You cannot deny the fact that its useful content that still rules the works, no matter if it is text, images or videos.
Ellis is a digital marketing manager and associate with web development outsource firm. He has 8 years of experience in IT Industry and seen many effective change day by day. Right now he is doing research with well-known technology HTML5 and sharing his thought with people around the world.
Ever since Google rolled out its Penguin and Panda updates, a lot of internet content marketers got affected. These dramatic updates designed to reduce rankings for low quality sites and to improve the relevance of search results transformed the basic principles and algorithms involved in successful SEO strategies and colossally impacted the inner workings of the World Wide Web.
Because of these changes, a lot of people have turned to guest blogging and blogger outreach strategies to continue building their businesses on the Internet without heavily relying on spammy links and keywords. With these strategies, article marketers are able to increase exposure and get additional backlinks by finding blogs from the same industry or niche who can host their content and on a bigger scale promote what they have to offer.
The needs that arose from these strategies have also given birth to networks designed to connect industry-specific blogs and businesses. There are networks that exist today which will help both companies and blog owners get started with these exciting new strategies that erupted in response to Google’s latest updates in its search algorithms. Here are some of the networks I’m talking about:
Dubbing itself as the blogger outreach dashboard, BlogDash proudly boasts of its 100,000 plus strong blogger database. Here, you can find, engage, and pitch bloggers based on keywords, categories, Klout score, gender, location, and more – helping them to find and connect with the right bloggers for their content marketing campaigns using sites that really care about the client’s industry.
This London-based website that’s still in beta phase has helped make guest blogging easier for both bloggers and advertisers. Signups for PostJoint works in two ways. One, you can sign up as an ‘advertiser’ if you produce content to give your marketplace (targeted blogs) a sneak peak of the articles you produce and then just wait for offers from blog owners who are willing to post your content. Two, you can sign up as a ‘blogger’ if you want to publish quality posts from content producers; all you have to do is to offer your chosen advertiser a spot to publish the article they’ve put up. Through this community, the entire process of guest posting can become more streamlined.
If you want to find new content or if you’re a writer who’s in need of guest posting opportunities, you can take advantage of Guestr, a free service that lets website owners and guest posters connect. It currently has over 800 websites on its list and the admins of the site are capable of accepting content ranging from arts to shopping and from sports to gardening. Each directory entry shows the page rank (PR), the estimated number of monthly visits, plus more current details about the blog or site where you can pitch stories to.
When it comes to guest blogging and blogger outreach, these are the sites to watch out for. Get started in the interesting world of guest blogging and blogger outreach by signing up with any (or all) of them.
After Google rolled out its Penguin and Panda updates which dramatically changed the way search engine optimization (SEO) works, many websites were hit hard. The Mountain View, CA tech giant heavily penalized, flagged, and really went after those that featured low-quality, thin content. Despite Google’s valiant efforts however, some sites which featured quality content weren’t able to recover and were forced to deal with low traffic.
This problem eventually gave birth to guest blogging or blogger outreach campaigns. By submitting articles to niche-based blogs that are looking to upload content, internet marketers can still increase exposure for certain brands and market their offerings through additional backlinks. At first, people did a lot of manual searches – contacting webmasters one by one, pitching topics, and the like – but eventually, they started looking for something that will collate the posting opportunities available in a common location. The advent of guest blogging networks like BlogDash and PostJoint, many internet marketers have found a way out of the search engine slump.
But being a part of a guest blogging network doesn’t automatically guarantee you a spot in one of these high-quality and high-traffic websites’ pages. Whether you want to do a lot of legwork and contact webmasters one by one to publish your articles or whether you have a high page rank (PR) site and you want to host good quality guest posts for your audiences to read, you still have to talk to them. And you need to remember some things when doing so.
Keep it personal.
If you want your content to be posted on a reputable site or if you want someone to do regular guest posts for you, don’t resort to the usual “Hi,” or “Dear Sir/Madam,” when contacting the person. Generic greetings appear lazy; do your research and find out who the blog owner or writer is so you can properly address them in your email or message. Don’t just go around sending the same template-based request, go out of your way and personalize each one of them.
Don’t just contact any webmaster just because his or her site is ranked high or generates heavy traffic. Don’t contact a writer just because his or her name pops up every time you do a search on “phone services.” Try to find a site or a writer that really fits your niche; try to really interact with whom you want to conduct business with. Invest some time in engaging and getting to know the webmaster or article marketer first before drafting that request. Comment, like, and share their work online so that you’ll get a bigger chance of getting approved.
Read, read, and read.
Webmasters have their own set of guidelines to ensure the quality of the content that goes into their blog or website; guest writers are obliged to follow them. On the other hand, writers also have their own styles, preferences, and specifications in terms of pricing or placements of links that webmasters need to be considerate about as well. Both partners must read up or make clarifications about these things to make the strategy work and keep it as seamless as possible.
If you really want to kick off your SEO or marketing campaign so that it gives you strong, well-aimed results, you will absolutely have to take an analytical approach to it. This means doing your research and studying your target market, your keywords as well as your competition in the process.
Let’s go into detail about how to do all these crucial things for maximum optimization success in beating out your competition.
Market Research Part I: Getting to Know your Niche
Your first job if you want search success is getting to know your niche well. Thus, as a starting point in your campaign planning, make sure that you’ve really fleshed out what you’re all about and what kind of audience you’re most likely aiming for.
You won’t always be able to gauge your eventual and actual target audience clearly simply through an analysis of your content, but you should get your guesswork as finely tuned as possible. This should be the case because, once you’ve already produced content, recalibrating it for new audiences is difficult and time consuming; it’s easier to nail it as closely as possible right from the start.
One further niche research step that you should delve into involves really getting a feel for the existing online community that exists around your niche. Explore blogs, forums and other content or information sites that relate to your core site topics, participate even and have conversations with the people you see commenting or writing.
Get a feel for the questions asked, the problems faced and the information needs of your possible audience; note all this information down. Also note down all the keywords you run into, they will nicely complement your own list of words and phrases and will help you create a far deeper research process in the next step we’ll be discussing.
Market Research Part II: Keyword Research
You should have a well-established list of keywords on hand with which to start really analyzing your target audiences search habits as well as what words will work best.
With these words in hand, start conducting analytics through tools such as the Google Keyword Search Tool. You can gain even further insight if you use services such as www.wordstream.com or www.wordtracker.com.
Whichever of these you’re working with, you need to look up the keywords you have listed, take into account the additional keyword suggestions that pop up as a result of them and note numerous key metrics for all words and phrases that you examine. Some of these key metrics will include competition for particular words, how well they convert, how often they’re searched for and how they relate to each other.
These are the words that you will use extensively in your content; they are also the words that will form the basis of which direction your content goes in.
Keyword quality is something that you need to keep in mind at all times. This means that just any keyword isn’t good enough and many keywords with high search volume don’t automatically mean high value for your SEO. If some of the words you study are too generic for your niche, too competitive or notoriously low converters; ignore them, they will usually be a waste of effort that produces poor optimization results.
A final keyword possibility is the slew of local search phrases that apply to your area. This might be something that gives you a special edge and narrows down your competition dramatically. Thus; instead of focusing on “SEO services”, for example, focus instead on analyzing and using “SEO services in X region (X being your town, city or state).
Market Research III: Self Analysis
One final component to your initial market research involves conducting analytics on your own site as it is now. Use tools such as Google Analytics (www.google.com/analystics) and the conversion tracking tools at a site like www.crazyegg.com to find out some of the following:
- where your inbound visits are coming from
- how many visitors per month you’re getting
- what keywords you’re ranking for (and how well)
- how visitors are looking through your page (what’s causing bounce backs and what’s converting well) –CrazyEgg is a great tool for this.
- what percentage of your inbound visitors are coming from organic search results, what percentage from advertising, and what percentage from inbound links on other sites
- what sites are linking to you
Also analyze what keywords you already have littered throughout your site and make sure you know their density. This is important since you don’t want to later overdo your keyword use and add more of the same words you’re already ranking well for.
Finally, see if you’re ranking for any kind of local search and how your local search terms are lacking or working out if you’ve decided to use them.
Market Research IV: Knowing and Beating your Competition
Now that you’ve done the above –understanding your target audience, knowing your keyword market as thoroughly as possible and understanding how your own site’s metrics are performing– you can now focus on getting to know your competition.
The first step in this process consists of actually finding out who your competitors are. You can do this easily by simply doing your own searches on your best prospective keywords and picking out the 3 to 5 top ranking results for each. Focus especially on results that are the same across numerous words –these will be your biggest competitors.
Having found these people, analyze them just as you did your own site. Run their sites through Google Analytics, Crazy Egg if possible and examine the sites with your own critical eye.
The key things you should look out for include the same metrics as you found out for your own site (as listed above) and also some or all of the following:
- Content Quality
- keyword density
- URL structure
- Site layout (how easy the site is to navigate, how well it connects things in sequential steps for deeper conversion)
- internal link structure (how thorough and easy to navigate it is)
- Conversion methods and calls to action (what kinds are they using, how are they structured)
Keeping all of these things in mind, you should focus on making your site outdo your competitors in at least several of these categories.
Ultimately however –and this is vitally important—you should really try to beat out your competition by increasing your own visitor engagement so that it results in lower bounce back rates and higher conversions than the pages of your competitors. This last aim is what will do the most to improve your rank, even if your opponents in the ranking game have more fresh monthly visitors coming to them. Why? Because what Google values above virtually all else seems to be how well a site makes people take interest in it, how much value it gives them. One of the most accurate ways by which the search engine can measure this is through its examination of how much time people spend on a page and how deeply they enter it.
If this is something that you can achieve for a high percentage of even a more limited number of monthly visitors –especially because you have learned to really understand your audience through the above means—then you will truly start seeing long term results in your SEO campaign.
About the author:
Ray Nelson writes about online marketing strategies and small business branding. Ray enjoys writing and blogging on a number of different marketing topics.
The common saying is that a picture says a thousand words, and while this is true – you can go ahead and throw this notion out when it comes to your website. No, I don’t mean get rid of all of your images, far from it. Image optimization should be a dedicated part of your onsite SEO strategy, but it shouldn’t make up the entirety of a page’s content if you want to rank well for keywords in the search engines.
More important than links is a websites content. It is the glue that holds the site together and keeps people coming back for more, promotes sales, and helps a site to rank within the SERPs. The main landing pages should feature great content that inspires viewers to click deeper within a site. Google takes into account the bounce rate of your site (along with 200 other factors). Bounce rate is a measurement of how often a visitor goes to a page and leaves in a short amount of time, and having a high bounce rate is a sign to Google that people are not going deeper into a site and don’t find the content worthwhile. Your site can suffer from high bounce rates if is without content that catches the reader’s attention. You can track more than just your sites bounce rate with Google Analytics.
On Home Pages
On About Pages
Well developed “About” pages often end up being a large landing page from search engines and links due to the fact that they should feature a healthy amount of keywords, and it’s a natural place for people to link to when talking about your company. With this in mind, don’t use generic phrases in your about page. New visitors are not likely to know what your site is about, and this is your chance to tell them straight forward while pumping up the page with worthwhile keywords in a natural way. About pages shouldn’t just be content rich, they should have rich content.
Natural Link Building
Since Google’s Panda and Penguin updates have made link building an expensive and time extensive ordeal, it can be difficult to find the resources to link build efficiently. However, strong content will build links naturally over time since more people will be likely to link to a page that offers something of value. You could also call this passive link building, or link earning, but either way it takes very strong content if you want people to link to you on their own accord.
Don’t Try to Cheat
CSS is a fantastic way to make your site look great, but some people are seduced into using CSS in a spammy way. These webmasters use CSS to cover up and hide weak content and images that serve no purpose but to manipulate the crawlers. The visitors see a clean page with some nice images and content, but lying underneath are keyword abusing phrases that the bots will see while visitors do not. This is deceitful to visitors and Google is known to penalize sites that use this kind of tactic, or any kind of black hat SEO tactic.
If you’re trying to improve your onsite SEO and get more search traffic to your landing pages then you’ll want to beef them up with strong content that inspires visitors to keep on going into your site. This benefits you, the readers, and the search bots who are trying to index your site.