Identifying the Right Keywords

Identifying the Right Keywords
One of the most important – and very frequently glossed over – tasks you should do when Identifying the Right Keywords you want your website to rank well in the major Search Engines for.

Identifying the Right Keywords

Keyword research is not too difficult and there are several online tools that will you in this process. So what should you be doing? Here’s a summary of the basic process involved in Identifying the Right Keywords:

Brainstorm the Keywords to use.
Brainstorm and write down a list of keywords and phrases that describe your products and services. Crucially important, yet often missed by web managers, is to include the keywords you think your customers might use when searching for you or your competitors.

Another useful approach is to ask some of your customers what they might type into the Search Engines such as Google or Bing if they were searching for the products and services your business offers. We would also suggest it good practice to include brand and business names.

Include any Known Keywords Successes
To your target list of keywords and phrases add any keywords or phrases that you know or recognise which currently brings qualified traffic and business to your website. Where can you get this information? Well, ask your employees, ask your customers and, assuming you have access to web analytics such as Google Analytics (free) or other website analytics software – you should be able to identify these key phrases here.

Research the Best keywords for your Project
Now use your list of key phrases and, perhaps by using a free keyword tool, try and identify those key phrases which will work well for you. Using the likes of the Google keyword tool, you should be able to note those key phrases your potential customers really do use and type into the Search engines to locate the products and services your are looking to promote.

Online tools such as the Google AdWords Keyword Tool provides:

  • Keyword data by specific countries & territories
  • Search volumes and trends
  • Competition levels for key phrases

There are several other keyword tools available to help you identify the right key phrases for your project and these include: Bing (free), Word tracker (free and paid), Word stream (free and paid), and Keyword Discovery (free and paid).

When you’re finished your key phrase research then you should end up with a clear and relevant list of keywords / key phrases to use together with their local monthly search volume.

Finalise your list of Keyword Targets
By now you should now have a good list of keywords you want your business to use on the web pages you want to be found for, and remember that you can set up a specific set of key phrases for each individual page in your website.

Add these key phrases to your respective pages and remember it may be, for example when creating a ‘landing page’ for an AdWords campaign, to that you need to build a new page based around a specific phrase(s).

You should note that when populating your web pages with these phrases that you should always write copy for the end user, not specifically just for the Search engines. Keyword / key phrase density refers to the number of times a phrase is included in the content on a page. Repeating the phrase too often may well be considered spam by the likes of Google and should be avoided.

Good quality, relevant and well written content – aimed at the site visitor – should be the order of the day.

Tracking your Rankings
Keep an eye on your Search engine rankings for a key phrase and help direct your strategic and tactical efforts, which should also enable you to refine and update your targeted key phrases. For example if you find that you have a selection of relatively low competition keywords ranking in positions  3–10, then the chances are that pushing some great content out that links to those pages will give those pages the boost they need to get to the top.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Internet Marketing
If you would like some assistance with any aspect of your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Internet Marketing project, call Direct Submit now on 0845 2722350 or visit the Direct Submit website for further information and guidance.

301 Redirects: Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, Google Advice

Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, Google says to use 301 Redirects
On a webmaster video yesterday, Google trends analyst John Mueller strongly recommended that people migrating from HTTP to HTTPS do so with 301 redirects on a per-URL basis. He said you should not use other types of redirects, such as 303s or others; you should stick with 301 redirects for these migrations.

301 Redirects. Google Advice

Google 301 Redirects
Mueller explained that “if you start using other kinds of HTTPS result codes for redirects, then… we kind of have to reconsider and think ‘well, are they doing something unique here that’s not just a generic site move?’” He said that will then lead Google down the path of reprocessing each and every URL, which will result in making “these moves take a lot longer and make it a lot harder for us to just pass on all of the signals to the new version of the site.”

Here is the transcript from the video:

“Can we also use a 303 status code after moving from HTTP to HTTPS or as only 301 recommended?

We strongly recommend use clean 301 redirect from on a per URL basis for HTTP migrations.

So you can use other types of redirects but the 301 redirect is really the one that we watch out for. And if we can recognize that it’s really a clean migration from HTTP to HTTPS, that all of the old URLs have moved to the new one, that you’re not removing things, that you’re not noindexing or robots.txt disallowing pages differently on HTTPS. Then that makes a lot easier for us to trust that as a kind of this one big thing of a site move that is moving from HTTP to HTTPS.

So the clearer you can tell us that this is really just a generic move and we don’t have to think about any of the details, the more likely we can just switch that over without you seeing any big change at all.

So if you start using other kind of HTTPS result codes for redirects then that makes it such that we kind of have to reconsider and think ‘well, are they doing something unique here that’s not just a generic site move?’ And then, at that point, we have to reprocess really each URL individually and think like ‘well, what is the webmaster trying to do here in this specific case.’ And that makes these moves take a lot longer and makes it a lot harder for us to just pass on all of the signals to the new version of the site.”

The Importance of Local SEO

The Importance of Local SEO
You may be wondering why you should ensure that your business site is up-to-date with the latest local SEO practices. Local SEO marketing helps your company to get to the top of the Google’s natural listings, helping local customers easily find your products and services. Here we’ll detail why local SEO for your business is so important, with statistics that prove how beneficial local SEO is for a business.

Importance of Local SEO

What is Local SEO
Local SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) allows you to effectively market your business online to a local audience. Using a variety of techniques and strategies to get your business ranked in Google’s ‘Local Pack’ for your specific service will allow you to attract local customers looking for that service in their area.

The following statistics highlight the importance of local SEO for a business:

•93% – The percentage of time Google’s Local Pack appears in the top spot of searches with localised intent.
•50% – The percentage of local mobile searches that are looking for business information, like a local address.
•68% – The percentage of searches that use ‘get directions’ or ‘click to call’ in a local mobile ad.
•71% – The percentage of people who look up and confirm the location of a business before visiting for the first time.
•46% – Of searches on Google that are local.
•86% – Of people look up the location of a business using Google Maps.
•76% – The percentage of local searches that result in a phone call.

Many local companies rely almost entirely local, geographic specific business so it makes sense that ‘your business’ should be taking advantage of these search engine changes. This could potentially lead to significant increases in business enquiries and sales.

SEO is a set of techniques that help your website become more visible online. It’s a way of structuring your website and tailoring its content to show search engines, like Google, that you are a better resource than others. This can also be applied to other platforms such as social media accounts, business directories, press releases and 3rd party blog posts.

This is why SEO is so important in digital marketing – if you ignore SEO you’ll find you have difficulty moving up Google search rankings and finding customers online. As more websites use SEO it will become harder and harder to compete effectively online without it.

At Direct Submit, we specialise in online marketing and local SEO for small, local businesses. We’ve helped loads of local businesses to improve their websites ranking in the major search engines, helping attract more qualified traffic and bring in more sales on the web.

For more information on Local SEO, call us today on 0845 2722350 and get your website noticed locally.

Making a Website Work for Your Business

Making a Website Work for Your Business
In a perfect world, SEO would be developed while a website is still in infancy. While this ideal situation rarely occurs, the following steps summarise the process as it should occur every time.

Website Work for Your Business

Key Phrase Strategy and Website Development Before building your website, you must have a keyword strategy. Select key phrases that are relevant to your business and receive an acceptable level of traffic. It is often appropriate, particularly for smaller / new businesses, to avoid the most competitive phrases where the level of competition you would be up against would be significant. You can always develop to these phrases as your business grows.

Once you have selected your keywords you can begin to develop the website using basic SEO site structure principles. These include the Meta titles, Meta descriptions, linking strategy, clear site navigation, optimised coding and great content.

Web Analytics Try to include some web analytics platform that will allow you to monitor users are coming from and what search terms they are using. One free example is Google Analytics which provides a reasonable level of feedback on the traffic levels and sources to your website. This information will enable you to monitor and update your website to try and achieve the best results possible within your market sector.

Driving Traffic to the Website Obvious really, but look to get your web pages listed in the main search engines as quickly as you can.  You can submit the website, but also look to get your URL linked to from websites already in the search engines. Subscribe to directories and develop a strategy for effective link building. Remember, with links, it’s about quality, not quantity; a handful of links on top-notch sites is worth hundreds of links on irrelevant, insignificant sites.

Incorporate off site and traditional marketing methods. For example, include your web address on your stationary and have it displayed on the side of company vehicles.

Consider employing the services of an Internet Marketing specialist to help with the Search Engine process. At Direct Submit we regularly see clients who have spent thousands on a website wrongly assuming, the traffic will just come, only to find their lovely looking website is not SEO friendly and they have no identifiable SEO strategy in place.

Monitor, Evaluate & Refine After you campaign has run for a time, review and look to assess how the project has been working. Are your keywords receiving the most traffic and bringing in the best ROI, is your website listed in the major search engines and do you need to update /refine the website content.

Direct Submit Facebook Page

Direct Submit Facebook Page
The well-established Direct Submit Facebook Page has now passed the ‘1,000 likes’ point and continues to grow. The page contains loads of useful SEO news and guides, plus updates on some of the many Direct Submit clients.

The Direct Submit Facebook Page

Some of the most recent SEO guides include information on key word research, the importance of local SEO and the potential benefits to your business of SEO and Internet Marketing.

Google Adds a Third Headline to Text Ads

Google Adds a Third Headline to Text Ads
Google is letting advertisers add an additional headline and description to text ads. In total, text ads can now have up to three headlines and two descriptions.

Google has also expanded the number of characters in a description to 90 characters. This means text ads can now contain as many characters as responsive search ads.

Google Adds a Third Headline to Text Ads

Google offers one suggestion for how to use the third headline:

“To get started, try adding a third headline and a second description to your existing text ads. For example, if you’re a retailer using two headlines that show your brand name and official site, you can add a third headline showing shipping details or special offers.”

This update to text ads will be available to advertisers in late August.

Within the same announcement, Google also revealed that responsive search ads are rolling out to more advertisers starting in September 2018.

Digital Portrayal of your Business

Digital Portrayal of your Business
Your online website is the digital portrayal of your business. Viewers go through it with an intention of peeking into the functioning of your business and even the reputation of it. One of the most decisive factors behind your brand gaining business through its website is the credibility it holds. The potential customers will only bank upon your business website after they trust it and the people behind it. In case you are an ecommerce website or a website that deals with customers’ sensitive information, you will have to put in extra efforts to gain customers’ trust.

Digital Portrayal of your Business

Improving the Digital Portrayal of your Business
If you would like to make your website more credible, here is a summary of the factors that immensely influence your website’s credibility as provided by the online SEO journal, Search Engine Watch.

Search engines’ perception of your website
Search engines employ their algorithms and bots to assess the performance of your website and rank it, accordingly. If you are doing things in a right manner i.e. White SEO, following Google Algorithm updates and content policies, your website keeps moving up the search engine ranking ladder. That is a great first impression for your website visitors.

Social proof of your business
Establishing a social proof of your business website is crucial for its credibility impression. You need to put up links to all the social media pages of your business on your website. Apart from that, your website having a list of your clients/brands who have been associated with your business can be impactful.

Client/customer testimonials and reviews
Regardless of the nature of your business operations, i.e. whether it deals in product sales or services, you will always have customer reviews and testimonials coming in. Based on the customer experience granted by the business, these customers will either have a positive or a negative opinion of your business.

An updated blog
An updated blog that posts regular updates, fresh posts, and engages with the comments made on it, is termed as more credible by the audience.

Consistent website updates
It is very important to keep updating the website content because it gives the message that your business is moving ahead and is growing. Without any updates, the site audience would be free to make an opinion that your business simply doesn’t care.

Accessible contact information
If your business or brand isn’t accessible to its audience, people will deem things to be fishy. It is very important for your website to make it easy for your audience to contact you. Hence, for building your credibility, put out your phone number, physical address, and an email address on the website.

Even if your website is strictly accessible only on a membership-based model, it should make the contact information public for all the audience to see.

So if you want to look further into how the Digital Portrayal of your Business can affect your online presence and you would like to do more with your website give Direct Submit a call on 0845 2722350.

Google Confirms Broad Core Search Algorithm Update

Google Confirms Broad Search Algorithm Update
Google confirmed yesterday on Twitter that it has released a “broad core algorithm update” this week. This was after the search community noticed shifts in rankings and traffic.

broad core algorithm update

Google will release several algorithm updates per year that it may confirm, while many others are not confirmed or recognised by Google.

Google Broad Core Algorithm Updates
The March update and April update from earlier this year were also “broad core algorithm updates.” Google said its advice to webmasters on these updates has not changed.

Here is what Google said back then:

“Each day, Google usually releases one or more changes designed to improve our results. Some are focused around specific improvements. Some are broad changes. Last week, we released a broad core algorithm update. We do these routinely several times per year.”

As with any update, some sites may note drops or gains. There’s nothing wrong with pages that may now perform less well. Instead, it’s that changes to our systems are benefiting pages that were previously under-rewarded.

There’s no “fix” for pages that may perform less well other than to remain focused on building great content. Over time, it may be that your content may rise relative to other pages.

In short, Google will continue to refine its algorithms in order to make its search results better for their users. Google is telling webmasters that there is nothing a webmaster can do to “fix” their pages to rank better after an update. Instead, try to keep making your website better over time, and Google may recognise those improvements over time, and your rankings may improve.