Monthly Archives: May 2016

Ask The Public

Typically website owners talk about keywords or keyphrases when we describe what people type into the search box, if we were being more accurate we should probably call them search queries.

We should call them queries more often,  because the person looking at the screen is ultimately asking a question. It might not always be phrased as a question but often it is. Check out this great tool called  “Answer the Public”.  It’s a tool with one simple purpose, understanding the questions people have about a topic.

When you start typing into it tries to guess what you were typing before you’ve even finished typing. These suggestions are triggered by two things, search volume and mention volume. Are people searching using those words and are websites using them as well?

These suggestions are the datapoints which feed Answer the Public. You type in a seed concept and it spits out visualisations on questions people have around that topic.

Proper genuine customer insight from a free tool. Here is a screenshot of the tool in action. Enjoy!

2016-05-24 09_40_30-'House prices' UK visual keyword research & content ideas _ AnswerThePublic.com

 

Voice search grows

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Staff at Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, stated  this past Thursday that a now quarter of all searches performed on Bing are voice searches.

They also stated that, voice searches are becoming longer, spanning between between six and 10 words, compared to the average of 1 to 3 words for text searches.

This is interesting, and no doubt amplified by the fact that three of the world’s top voice assistants are powered by Bing. Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Amazon’s Alexa all rely on Bing for their voice search queries. This is something that has to be put into perspective when reading this news.

on the other hand has not revealed how many of its searches are voice searches, but the search giant is clearly invested in the future of voice search.

While comparing  Google and Bing , it’s also important to note that Google is invested in machine learning. That means that over time it’s voice search capability can potentially learn and evolve as it gets more comfortable interpreting and responding to human voice. That’s an advantage Google’s technology has over Bing’s at this point in time.

This may well be just the start for the growth of voice search, in my opinion. Before long, I would expect closer to 50% of all searches to be comprised of voice searches.

Google makes big changes in search results

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has made a significant change to its search results pages by extending the length of titles and descriptions. This was first  reported on by Jennifer Slegg at The SEM Post

Here is what has changed

Title tags have been increased to 70–71 characters, which is up from its previous 50–60 characters. That’s at least enough to fit in another word or two.

Meta descriptions have been increased by 100 characters per line, and extended from two to three lines. That’s a significant increase, and presents far more of an opportunity to tell searchers what the page is about.

Google is still truncating the descriptions to two lines for many search results still, so you may still see them coming in at around 160 characters at times. When an three line snipped is display they come in at 278 characters per line.

It’s important to note that this may be a test which Google could reverse at any time. By the company’s own admission, it is always A/B testing. So it’s a good idea not to base your efforts on these numbers until it’s known for sure if the test will become a permanent change.

Linkedin SEO Tips

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Is your LinkedIn profile simply not getting the attention you feel it deserves?

LinkedIn, like Facebook and , relies on a custom search algorithm for retrieving and presenting results. Ensuring your profile gets the right amount of attention from potential clients and employers requires platform-specific optimization efforts.

Will loading up your profile with tons of details on your work history and education, , endorsements, and a long bio help? It certainly will. While LinkedIn’s algorithm is kept under wraps, it’s extremely likely that quite a bit of preference is lent to individuals with highly-robust, detailed profiles on the social media network. To help get you pointed in the right direction we found this great Infographic:

 

 

 

How do I approach SEO for Bing?

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The  Bing algorithm  is not publicly available and because of that there is a lot of speculation about what matters more for Bing (in comparison to ) .

Here are some factors, which are ( believed to be) of importance when Bing optimization is concerned:

are of less importance. If you compare the first 10 results in Bing and Google, it is noticeable that the top rankers in Bing have less backlinks than those in Google. It is unclear if nofollow matters with Bing.

Inbound anchor text matters more. The quantity of quality inbound might be of less importance for Bing but the anchor text certainly matters more.

Onpage factors matter more in Bing than with Google. This is one of the most controversial points, but many experts think that onpage factors matter more with Bing than with Google.

Bing pays more attention to the authority of the site. If this is true, this is bad news for bloggers and small sites because it means that search results are distorted in favor of older sites and/or sites of authoritative organizations. Age of domain is also very important with Bing.

PR matters less. When you perform a search for a competitive keyword and you see a couple of PR2 or even PR1 sites among the top 10 results.  On Google this is hardly possible but on Bing it looks quite normal.

Fresh content matters less. Bing looks a bit conservative but it seems that fresh content is not so vital as with Google. This is related to the age of domain specifics and as a result you will see ancient pages rank high (but these ancient pages are relevant to the search query).

Bing is more Flash-friendly.  It looks like Bing is more Flash-friendly, which is good news to all sites where Flash is (still) heavily employed.

It may be too early to say which factors are of primary importance with Bing,  but the fact that their search results are relevant means that their algorithm is really precise. As a result, the content is authentic, as there are less known SEO gimmicks. We’ll see if this will stay so in the future, when SEO experts learn how to optimize for Bing as well!

5 online tools to keep you sane

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When it comes to handling workloads, many of us are faced with the same problem: How do you complete all of your  work tasks on time without going crazy? Here are 5 tools that may help.

SaneBox

What’s the archenemy of effective communication? Most people would probably vote for email. That’s why SaneBox exists. Over time, the service learns what emails are significant to you. Then, it filters out the emails you don’t need, so you can focus on the most important communication and get rid of the anxiety that comes from unanswered emails.

Checker Plus for Gmail

Checker Plus for Gmail substantially expands Gmail’s functionality in Chrome by providing not only pop-up notifications when someone opens your message, but also notifications for incoming correspondence. All this means you can sort your mailbox without ever having to open it. The best part is that you can use it with multiple Gmail accounts, so it takes away the strain of switching between different mailboxes.

Followup.cc

Both a Gmail plugin and a standalone app that gives you full control over the timing of your communication, Followup.cc is a salesperson’s best friend—and saves you a great deal of anxiety. How? You can take advantage of a variety of easy-to-set-up reminders to follow up with someone, not to mention a bunch of other highly customizable settings (group and personal notifications and cancel-on-first-response are just a few of them).

Slack

Working within a team can be complicated. Thankfully, Slack takes the pressure out of work-related communication by letting you upload and share documents and organize communication by topical channels. Plus, it integrates with practically all of your work tools.

Join.me

Join.me promises better meetings for everyone, and there are good reasons to believe them. The service offers free screen sharing, video conferencing, and team collaboration, and the paid plans add advanced capabilities for an even better experience. Your team meetings will run more smoothly and online talks with clients will be more efficient with screen sharing and audio tools.

Basic on Page optimization Tips

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A Web page’s title tag is still  one of the most important attributes from an perspective.  Use the main keyword phrase in the beginning of the page title tag. The first 64 characters of the title tag are shown as the click-though link in a search result. Every page of the website should have a unique page title tag.
Meta description tags help attract visitors from the search results page. Include one or two keyword phrases that describe the page’s content, and keep meta descriptions under 160 characters.
The H1 tag is the header of the page. You should have only one H1 tag per page.
Use your designated keyword phrase at least once near the beginning of the content, and also anywhere it makes sense. Don’t use the keyword phrase, its variation or a synonym more than 4-5 times per page.
Alt tags are the floating descriptions that show up when you mouse over an image. It’s usually best  to use keywords and their variations in the alt text of an image, and also in the image filename.

 

Up your SEO Game with Googles Conversion Paths Tool

A good way to evaluate conversion paths is to understand how long it takes people to convert and how channels interact along the way.

Use analytics  Top Conversion Paths report to look at sequences of unique channel interactions (paths) that led to conversions. You will find this report in Multi-Channel Funnels section of Google Analytics. the report shows the number and value of conversions for each sequence. Chances are, the paths will be very diverse: 3%-5% of visitors followed the top path. But there are still  trends you can obtain from this report.

2016-05-05 09_11_30-How Conversion Paths Work _ Search Engine People

Skim over about 100 top conversion paths. If Referral is a stranger to the party, examine traffic from referral sites and find that bring you good converting traffic. Then, try to get links from more sites like that because you need to work on your links.

If organic traffic starts most of the paths and paid terminates them, you need to up your game. Your visitors find you in search but until they come across your ad, they are not convinced that you and them are a good match. If PPC starts the conversation and search brings home the bacon, you could be wasting money on PPC and a paid search audit might be in order.

All of the above are a starting point of an investigation. You will have to dig deeper to prove or disprove the hypothesis.

 

Google Cracks down on spam

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recently shared   their 2015 webspam repot. In it they said they served up 4.3 million manual actions in 2015 , that comes out to about 500 manual actions or Google manual penalties an hour!

Why so many manual actions? Well, in 2015, Google saw a 180% increase in hacked sites in their index, so they used both manual actions and the hacked sites algorithm to reduce them from showing up in the index. According to Google it is still a serious issue in 2016 so they have more work to do.
Google also said they “saw an increase in the number of sites with thin, low quality content. Such content contains little or no added value and is often scraped from other sites.” Google said they “sent more than 4.3 million messages to webmasters to notify them of manual actions,” and “saw a 33% increase in the number of sites that went through spam clean-up efforts towards a successful reconsideration process.”
Google received more than 400,000 spam reports and acted on 65% of them, and considered 80% of those acted upon to be spam.
In 2015 there was a 180% increase in the number of websites being hacked, compared to the same time period last year.
Spam not dealt with by algorithms was tackled manually; more than 4.3 million messages to webmasters notifying them of manual actions.
There was a 33% increase in the number of sites with successful reconsideration requests and more than 400,000 spam reports sent from around the world, Google acted on 65% of them and
80% of those acted on were considered to be spam.

 

50% of users unable to recognise ads in Google search results

According to Ofcom half of all search engine using adults do not recognise ads.

In the survey, 1,328 respondents  had to select the results they thought were ‘paid for’. 60% identified them as paid , while 49% identified them only as paid ads

Ofcom  split the results between newer and more established internet users and found that newer users were less likely to identify that the results with the yellow ad label were indeed paid results.

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One of the advantages of AdWords advertising is it allows you to target your advertisements to anyone, anywhere in the world. By tweaking your campaign you can choose to have your Ads seen by a whole continent, a specific region, or an area of just a few streets wide. With AdWords, you can run your entire campaign – targeting people from anywhere in the world – from your own home.

The benefits of Google Advertising  outweigh the costs involved. By determining how people use Google  Google Advertising takes the hard work away from advertisers, making advertising simple and effective.

  • With Google advertising there is no minimum spend.
  • It is easy to create campaigns and you can see the results instantly.
  • You can get your Google Ads up online quickly if any new developments occur.
  • You only pay for clicks on your Google Ads, not for them to appear on Google’s search results pages.
  • You can set a daily budget.
  • And you can stop or pause any campaign when required.