Tag Archives: Content Marketing

How to Find a Qualified Content Marketer to Add to Your Team

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Qualified Content Marketer - Eminent SEO

Effective content marketing can take your entire company to another level. It can spread awareness of your brand, as well as create a following that’s hooked on the material you release and eager to consume your future offerings.

Content marketing that is done well should lead indirectly to more sales for the company that produces it. However, many businesses are lagging behind when it comes to actualizing the power of this type of marketing.

According to a recent Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs survey, although 88 percent of the business-to-business companies that were surveyed said they use content marketing, only 30 percent of them considered their organization effective at it. Additionally, only 44 percent thought their company was clear on what a successful content marketing program looks like.

The same survey revealed that companies that excel the most at content marketing use an average of 42 percent of their total marketing budget on this particular strategy, which is much higher than the current norm. These proficient companies also use a higher number of content marketing tactics and social media platforms on average than businesses that are struggling with this discipline.

One of the most critical steps in boosting your company’s content marketing game is to find a competent and qualified content marketer. This means looking for someone who can bring more to the table than just copywriting competence. Hiring a qualified content marketer can be a time-intensive process, but it will be worth it if you find the right individual.

Before we get into how to find a qualified content marketer, let’s back up a bit and make sure we’re on the same page about what content marketing is.

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing aims to educate or entertain consumers in hopes of retaining customers or attracting new ones. This type of content eschews a sales pitch and makes little-to-no mention of the company behind it. It also has the potential to change or enhance consumer behavior, according to the Content Marketing Institute. This material hasn’t always been free to the consumer, but as it has reared its head in the online world, it more commonly appears at no cost to the public – or even to its subscribers.

Content marketing was actually known as “branded content” for several years before marketers started to glom onto the newer term. What we now know as content marketing has existed since before the 20th century. Its origins are often traced to John Deere’s creation of “The Furrow” agricultural journal for consumers.

Other Non-Digital Examples of Content Marketing

Did you know soap opera got its name from the soap manufacturers such as Proctor & Gamble that used to exclusively sponsor this type of radio and television content?

Content marketing really started taking off in the 1980s, led by Hasbro and Marvel’s creation of a “G.I. Joe” comic book. LEGO launched what is now known as the “LEGO Club” magazine a few years after. These were indirect methods of trying to boost the sales of certain action figures and kids toys.

Other industries have followed suit, such as Red Bull launching “The Red Bulletin” magazine roughly 10 years ago. Meanwhile, beer manufacturer Leinenkugel’s has included a self-published newspaper in every 12-pack of its product for several years now.

There are countless other examples across almost every industry. For an example local to us here at Eminent SEO, the renowned “Arizona Highways” magazine is actually operated by the Arizona Department of Transportation.

What are the Main Channels for Content Marketing Distribution?

Mail Notification - Eminent SEOContent marketing online is generally cheaper to produce than past print- and TV-based material, and the barriers to entry are lower than they used to be. However, this content has to be released at a much faster rate than before. Online content marketing material almost always involves some amount of writing, but it goes well beyond just the company’s blog.

The most common digital content marketing channels include:

  • Social media
  • Blogs and other website articles
  • Videos
  • Email
  • White papers and eBooks
  • Infographics
  • Webinars, webcasts and podcasts
  • Online presentations, such as through SlideShare
  • Research reports

Many businesses that are committed to content marketing have also cited in-person events as an effective outlet for expanding their message.

According to the aforementioned Content Marketing Institute-MarketingProfs survey, the most effective social media platforms for B2B content marketers are (in order):

  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • SlideShare
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Google+

What it Takes to Find and Hire a Qualified Content Marketer

Now that we’re clear on what content marketing is, let’s explore the process you should put in place in order to find a highly qualified content marketer. The right candidate is going to need a mix of skills that goes beyond copywriting. You should probably establish this process as more of an audition rather than a series of interviews.

Start by Writing a Targeted Job Posting

Help Wanted Sign - Max - Eminent SEOGet the ball rolling by writing a strong job ad. This posting needs to catch a content marketer’s eye, and it needs to be clear and specific to the open position.

Using boilerplate language about your company will hurt your chances of finding the perfect candidate. You need to tailor the job posting to the specific tasks involved as well as the skills and qualities you’re looking for.

Don’t overwhelm the job seeker by listing every minute responsibility they would have. Nonetheless, you still don’t want your posting to be overly open-ended regarding which tasks they would be doing and which programs they need to know.

As far as where you should post your job ad, here are a few ideas:

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Inbound.org
  • Glassdoor
  • We Work Remotely (if it’s OK for the marketer to not come into your office every day)
  • Your own blog or eNewsletter

What to Ask For

For your job posting’s submission requests, here’s what you should ask for:

  • A resume (not a C.V.)
  • Three links to exemplary online writing samples
  • A sample pitch email for three topics that would mesh with your company’s existing blog

On your end, the resume doesn’t need to have as much emphasis as it would for most other positions. However, it’s still important to receive one so you can see if the candidate’s history of achievement in academia and the workforce translates well to your open content marketing position.

With your candidates’ writing samples, you need to look for someone whose writing isn’t dull and who can handle relaying high-brow or technical information in an engaging way. You also want to see if they can handle writing longer pieces, such as 1,000-1,500 words or more. And finally, if the samples they gave you have social signals, take a look at those to make sure the writer has been able to reach a sizeable audience.

In the pitch email, the candidate should feature three ideas for your company’s blog. In this email, you should also look for an engaging hook, and an overallmessage that’s concise and in line with the style of communication in your industry.

Going Beyond the Resume: Putting Their Writing to the Test

For the candidates that pass your initial assessment, you should put their writing to the test with an assignment. This will give both parties an idea of what it’s like to work with each other.

Choose one pitch for each candidate and ask them to begin bringing the idea to fruition. It’s best to pick one of the pitches that’s a little out of the candidate’s wheelhouse – judging by their resume – so that they have to do some research in order to return with the first draft. Give the candidates a few days (maybe even a week) and ask for about 1,000 words.

For each applicant, if you see potential in their first draft, give them feedback and suggested revisions. Once they have acknowledged receiving your suggestions, give them two hours to return with a revised piece. This step is crucial to see if they can work on deadline. If the applicant has incorporated your suggestions to your liking and the piece meets your company standards, then he or she gets to move on to the final evaluation.

Interviewing In-Person or via Webcam

Webcam Interview - Eminent SEONo, you don’t need to wait until this far into the process to conduct the first interview. You can actually do it right before the revision deadline if you want, as it will be clear when the two-hour deadline starts – when the interview concludes or as soon as they get home. Otherwise, you can just schedule the interview sometime after the applicant submits his or her revised written assignment.

You should block out an hour for the interview, at minimum. Ideally, an interview for a qualified content marketer would last 2 to 2.5 hours. The first half should consist of you asking them questions, while the second half should be their questions for you. As you’re probably aware, if the candidate isn’t asking very many questions about the job or the company, he or she will have a harder time earning the job offer.

As you interview the applicant, you’ll get a better idea if his or her personality will mesh with your company’s culture, which will be important in a position that usually involves a lot of collaboration. You’ll also want to ask about which platforms and digital tools the candidate is comfortable with, as well as what ideas he or she has for raising brand awareness beyond simply writing a good blog post.

Making Your Final Decision

A qualified content marketer will not only be able to write for various platforms, but will also need to possess the following qualities:

  • Networking skills (online and in person)
  • Research skills
  • Basic design knowledge (image and web page)
  • An idea of which topics can generate interest
  • Basic SEO knowledge
  • Familiarity with multiple digital tools
  • Willingness to learn new programs, platforms and methods
  • Forward-thinking ideas on how to boost your marketing efforts

Interview Candidate Checklist - Eminent SEOIt can be hard to gauge each candidate’s competence in those areas based on their writing samples, the writing exercise and an interview, but you should be able to come pretty close. Some of these skills can be acquired along the way if you find an applicant who is flexible and astute enough. Once you’ve aligned all of the variables and decided on the right person, try to make your offer within a couple of days.

Also, don’t forget to notify the candidates who didn’t make the cut. They longer they made it through your process, the more detailed of an email they should receive. Tell them where they impressed you and where they could have improved. The ones who went through the ringer to land a job with your company deserve at least that much.

Now That You Have Your New Content Marketer

With your new content marketer on board, make sure to give the individual the support they need and be open to hearing their ideas on where to go next. As you read earlier, effective content marketing involves allocating a reasonable portion of your marketing budget to this area.

Even great content marketers won’t succeed if the company doesn’t have a solid strategy in place. The B2B companies that excel the most at content marketing meet weekly to discuss their strategy (not daily, not monthly, etc.), according to the CMI-MarketingProfs survey.

What are your goals with content marketing: Brand awareness? Lead generation? Engagement Boost? Customer Retention? It’s going to differ by the industry you’re in and the existing resources you have within your company. No matter what your strategy is, it’s going be much more successful if you’ve chosen the most motivated and proficient content marketer that replied to your job listing.

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Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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Top 7 SEO Tricks and Lessons We Learned as a Team in 2015

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What We Learned In SEO In 2015 - ESEO

New Year’s Day has come and gone, and the month of January has almost disappeared before our eyes here at the offices of Eminent SEO. But, before we preview digital marketing and SEO developments to look out for in 2016 on our blog, I want to take a look back at the skills we picked up and the lessons we learned as a team last year.

Google hardly stayed static in 2015, so we had to consistently adjust to keep up at every turn. Therefore, at the end of 2015, the strategies we employed and our methods of execution on behalf of our clients were quite different than they were a year prior. The evolution of Eminent SEO was even further showcased in 2015 by our expansion as a team and ensuing move into a larger office space.

After doing a quick survey around the office, I’ve arrived at the top seven SEO tricks, skills, lessons, etc. we learned in 2015 (in no particular order), along with an explanation of how each item made us stronger as a team and better benefited our beloved clients:

1. Local Search Optimization

We found local search rankings to be increasingly important in 2015, especially considering the nature of our clients. Google now localizes search for most users anyway, so it’s best to pay attention to what residents in a target market are searching. Even businesses with a national audience should still make sure their online local info is in order. What this entails is clearing up any inconsistencies with a business’s name, address and phone number across all online listings, as well as creating more listings in local and even national online directories.

In some cases, we would even use pay-per-click campaigns to test keywords in a client’s geographic area to see what’s working. Once we figured out the answer, we would implement that keyword onto the client’s site as part of their longer-term organic marketing strategy.

To learn more about how to dominate local search, see this blog post we published last May.

2. Adding Schema Markup

Related to local search optimization is adding schema markup to a website. This has to do with code that doesn’t show up on the front end of a website but that tells Google precise data that could show up in the local map or even in the “knowledge graph” of the search engine.

Schema markup helps with local search by telling Google exactly where your business is on the map. This means that if a user searches for a certain product or type of service and uses the map to find businesses in their area, your company’s name and location could show up because you fed Google the right information.

Eminent SEO Google Map

Not only can you get the company’s logo or a custom photo to show up in Google Maps, but you can also use schema to tell the search engine exactly what kind of business you are. When you take out the guesswork for Google, it will know where to rank you in organic search better and when to show your location on the map for certain search terms.

3. Tailoring User Experience to Search

In 2015, we gained a better understanding of what engages users on a website, so we tailored our content delivery accordingly. We fine-tuned our landing page optimization practices by thinking like a consumer would when finding our clients’ content in search and clicking through.

We realized that if we could build content around what users are expecting to see and learn after landing on one of our clients’ pages from search, then we could keep them on the page and site longer. These “long clicks” routinely elicit better search results and higher chances of making a conversion.

4. Better Storytelling

Online storytelling became a big trend among marketers in 2015, and we started incorporating it on behalf of our clients for better engagement. This manifested in the forms of video and other interactive content, some of it coming from the use of newer digital tools.

Basically, if you’re a B2B company or a no-frills B2C entity, you should do more than continually make a sales pitch online. You’ve got to offer content that users find personally valuable and that costs them nothing, whether it’s entertaining or informative.

Storytelling in all its forms helps accomplish this. To learn about some tools that will help you boost your online storytelling efforts, see this recent blog post.

5. Marketing to Millennials

Last year, most businesses stopped deriding millennials and decided to center their marketing efforts on this group instead. Millennials are poised to become the top age group online, and they make up a good chunk of the workforce now. They also boast considerable buying power, especially since the economy is getting better and more of them are finding viable jobs.

Advertisers understand that the later you get in life, the more loyal you will be to certain brands and products. Millennials aren’t generally as set in their ways, so they’re usually more easily persuaded into buying from a brand they haven’t tried before.

In 2015, our team started focusing more of our efforts on appealing to millennials, whether on clients’ social profiles or websites. Undoubtedly, we’ll keep this initiative going in 2016.

6. Quality over Quantity

You’re probably seeing the title of this header and asking, “Quality over quantity in what area?” The answer is in many areas. We found that one quality backlink from a highly authoritative website can do more for a client’s search rankings than a bunch of backlinks from mediocre sites.

Likewise, one rock-solid page that summarizes a number of a client’s services can often generate more traffic than breaking the services down into individual pages. Also, writing one great, in-depth blog post will usually do better than separating some of the ideas into their own smaller posts. One outstanding social media post can often gain more likes, shares, comments, etc. than a dozen or so run-of-the-mill posts combined. You get the idea.

A stronger commitment to quality over quantity is why we’ve introduced new services like Authority Content Marketing (evergreen, in-depth content that’s designed to earn shares and backlinks). It’s also why we’ve placed a newfound focus on each of our client’s website architecture, including how each site’s navigation makes for a better user experience.

7. Clearer, Customized Reporting

Custom Reporting - Eminent SEOA client won’t stick around forever if we can’t provide proof that their website is moving them in the right direction, or if they don’t understand the numbers we’re reporting to them. We’ve always done full monthly reporting for all of our clients, but it used to be somewhat of a one-size-fits-all approach.

Last year, we realized that reporting that way doesn’t work for all clients. This is why we introduced customized, more in-depth monthly reports. Each industry is going to call for a different type of report because their goals are different, and the way their potential customers search is different. Many of our clients gauge success by the number of phone leads their website has generated, but others measure conversions by the number of online shopping cart sales, such as in the case of ecommerce clients.

In almost all cases, we had positive news to report monthly to our clients, but some of them had trouble seeing that because of the way we framed the data. Therefore, we’ve customized our reporting methods by client, collecting the right data for long-term success.

Looking Ahead Through 2016

Now that we’ve recapped what we learned last year, here are some marketing trends we’re keeping our eyes on in 2016:

  • Video and video ads will evolve dramatically, such as a shift toward the vertical format, which works better with today’s heavy smartphone usage.
  • Google will continue to index more content from mobile apps, so more companies might jump into that arena.
  • Mobile traffic will take over and dominate desktop.
  • Virtual reality will continue to emerge.
  • Wearable technology will pave new ground.
  • Google will continue to de-value thin content and place stronger emphasis on high-quality backlinks.

If you’re looking to stay on top of the ever-evolving standards for digital content and search engine optimization, Eminent SEO is ready to help keep your business ahead of the competition. Whether you need a whole new website or just more compelling content, Eminent SEO has a full range of services for your digital needs, with custom monthly reporting available to tell you which of your online assets are making progress.

We’ll take all we’ve learned in 2015 and apply it for the benefit of your company. Just call 800.871.4130 today to learn more and get started.

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Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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Boost Your Social Media Marketing Efforts with These Online Visual Tools

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Online Storytelling Tools - Eminent SEO

As 2016 approaches, you’re probably looking for fresh ways to deliver compelling content to online users, particularly those in the social media realm. Rather than trying to get people to focus on run-of-the-mill blog posts and straightforward service and product pages, why not focus on what you can do for them, not what they can do for you?

With that in mind, what steps can you take to better inform and even entertain your current audience? How can you make that audience grow, not only on your website, but on social media? What tools or practices can you employ to make your content stand out from the competition?

We’re going to tell you about three online tools you can use to help you answer the preceding questions. Not only are each of the tools listed below fairly easy to use, but two out of the three of them are free. One is fairly new to the scene, but all the companies behind all three tools happened to make moves within the last couple of years that helped them reach a wider audience.

The best part about each of the tools on the following list is that there’s a storytelling component to each of them. Telling stories is a tried-and-true way of capturing people’s attention. As far as storytelling online is concerned in the age of short attention spans, this time-tested method can help keep eyes on your content longer. Using the online tools below will help you churn out great content that’s a little different than the norm, yet readily shareable on social media.

Without further ado, let’s get into the three tools (in no particular order) that can help you boost your social media marketing efforts and overall online engagement in the coming year.

Storify

This online curation service is probably the most recognizable name on the list. It debuted in 2010 and was free for everybody to use. A business plan debuted in 2013, boasting additional features not found in the free version. You’ve probably seen Storify stories embedded on media sites like Yahoo and BBC, as the features are very useful for journalists trying to aggregate content posted to social media.

Storify lets you easily pull from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, SoundCloud and more in order to create one chronological story. You can write some text in between some of the social posts to give more context, but usually these stories are pretty light on copy, taking the best from social media and other online platforms. The stories are easily embeddable on your website, and your creations can get some extra views through custom social sharing features and on the platform itself, which functions as its own social network.

Even if you’re not in the news business, if you ever see a news story, event or trending social media topic that relates (even faintly) to your industry, that’s the perfect time to take to Storify. There you can grab social posts that either 1) best recap the online conversation, or 2) best illustrate whatever point you’d like to make. This can be a perfect way for your company to share your expertise on the trending subject and add value to the conversation. Your completed story will be perfect for sharing to social media and even embedding on your site.

When shared to Twitter, Storify stories make for one of the most interactive types of tweets imaginable.

If you go with the Storify Enterprise plan, you’ll have additional features at your disposal such as real-time story updates (perfect for live blogging) and the ability to blend an embedded story into your website’s format and color scheme. Overall, though, Storify is easy for any user to pick up and use for free.

ThingLink

This tool is the only one of the three on this list where your business is going to have to pay right off the bat, unless you’re counting the free 14-day trial. ThingLink lets you add interactive elements to photos and videos like never before. The company was founded in 2008, but arguably rose to prominence after receiving $2 million in venture capital funding in 2013.

In short, ThingLink allows you to put hot spots (or rich media tags) on a photo or video, which can bring up videos, product pages or stories (text or audio) that relate to that specific part of the image. Think of it like creating your own Pop Up Video. With ThingLink, a single image or video is just a stepping stone to a vast amount of content – as much as you choose.

Businesses that are naturally very visual-based have found many effective uses for ThingLink. Other companies have used the service to build landing pages, and even homepages, with a large photo that can take the user to various parts of the site. A spruced-up image or video through ThingLink makes for enticing content to tout on social media, bringing more eyes to the completed piece. Some images you can even share and allow outside users to tag parts of the picture and add content as they see fit.

If your business doesn’t do a lot of video or original photography, you still might try out the free trial on ThingLink and see what kind of feedback you get on a finished piece. If you see a strong ROI in that time frame, it may be worth your time to spring for a business subscription so you can work on bigger and better video and image projects.

Apester

Last but not least on this list is Apester, which has less to do with storytelling, on the surface, than the other two tools, but does allows you to churn out some visually impressive content. With Apester, you can create a slick, media-rich poll, survey or personality test to engage users and better understand your audience. Apester, a relatively young company that was formerly known as Qmerce, reached a milestone of $5 million in funding earlier this year.

Apester describes itself as a digital storytelling platform, especially when users take advantage of the service’s video quiz feature. Rather than having users passively watch a video, you can now create stopping points with Apester and ask the viewer questions – such as what the next lyric might be, if they’re watching a music video.

For other business purposes, if you have an educational video about a topic in your industry, you could use Apester to create places to, as educators would say, “check for understanding” about something the viewer should have learned from your video. The Weather Channel used Apester to quiz viewers of this informational video on extreme weather driving. After a user has voted or answered a question in an Apester-powered video or poll, they can share the content with their followers on social media.

If your company doesn’t do too much with video, the most practical use of Apester would be to create polls or surveys for your website. British media company UNILAD tends to use Apester polls at the bottom of many of their online news stories. For your business, you could embed a poll even on a services page of your website to see if visitors are understanding the content or to ask them what their most-pressing question or concern on the topic is. Well-worded polls can help you get to know get to know your audience better, which can help you market smarter to them going forward.

Did we mention the tool is free? You can use it for creating video advertisements, too. So, go ahead and sign up for Apester and start cranking out as much content as you’d like in ways that are going to boost your business.

In Conclusion

Don’t just give your audience the same ol’ same ol’ in 2016. Bring content to life by trying the aforementioned online tools, as well as any others out there that you think will help your company in some form or fashion. Now’s not the time to let your content stay idle and one-dimensional online. Let’s step our collective game up and deliver appealing (and informative) visual content to social media and other online users in the new year.

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Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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Understanding the Future of SEO: What to Expect in 2016 and Beyond

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Understanding the Future of SEO

Search is an ever-changing landscape of different variables that quantify what makes a website strong enough to rank. As we approach the end of 2015, some of us may be wondering what to expect in 2016 for SEO. My team had the opportunity to attend the Pubcon event in Vegas recently, and I’m happy to share what we learned in terms of the future of SEO.

A lot of businesses owners are still behind the times and are really going to feel it this coming year. If your business has yet to implement a responsive design, semantic markup, and a website that speaks to users, now is the time to implement those things. Otherwise, wait and fail because the future of search isn’t about the older demographic, but millennials and how they’re buying.

Focus on Mobile or Fail

We need to start looking at mobile optimization first since mobile search has finally reached a tipping point and has surpassed desktop search. Because of that, there are now mobile-specified algorithms that focus on mobile location and providing fewer results to the mobile user, but more qualified results than ever before.

As business owners and marketers, mobile optimization strategies need to speak to the mobile audience. This encompasses mobile voice search, mobile website design, mobile apps, and mobile website usability.

Mobile Effect for the Future of SEO

Optimizing for Mobile Voice Search

Traditionally, websites have been optimized for important key phrases because that’s how users would use a search engine. Now, with mobile voice search services such as Siri and Google Voice, users are approaching search in a different way. Google’s Hummingbird update directly speaks to voice search users, which allows the search engines to interpret full questions.

Instead of only optimizing websites with important keywords, start thinking about your audience and what questions they may be asking when your product or service will provide the solution. Simply adding a FAQs section to your website that answers these questions with well-researched answers would help optimize the site for voice search.

Optimizing Mobile App Traffic Sources

Since millennials are using their phones for more than just texting and searching Google, we need to be forward thinking when it comes to how they are searching within other apps. Social apps alone are a huge data source for search. Think about Pinterest. Have you searched for recipes on Pinterest? It has become its very own search engine. Therefore, businesses need to be optimized on social apps as well.

Optimizing Your Website for Mobile Users

When designing and optimizing a website, mobile design needs to be the first thought, since it’s where the majority of your traffic is going to come from. If it hasn’t happened already, it inevitably will happen soon. Optimizing the following website considerations will help provide a better mobile user experience:

  • Optimize website speed times.
  • Javascript, CSS, and image files should not be blocked from search engines.
  • Use Schema.org structured data to enhance the rich snippets for mobile.
  • Prevent the usage of pop-ups.
  • DO NOT use any Flash, since mobile devices cannot read Flash.
  • Make sure buttons and navigation are designed for big, fat fingers.
  • Localize your footer with the correct Name, Address, and Phone Number for local search.
  • Make sure the content reads well on mobile by optimizing headers and calls to action.

Use Responsive Design

Responsive design allows your website to scale to fit all devices seamlessly. There are still certain tweaks that need to be made to make sure the content is optimized correctly for mobile, but the website is pretty much the same on mobile as desktop, whereas mobile-specific sites may only show mobile users selected areas of your website, not the entirety of the site.

Mobile Optimization

Include Schema Markup in Your On-Page SEO Strategy

Schema markup can enhance your presence in the search engine results by telling search engines exactly what your data means. When search engines understand what the data means, they can provide valuable rich snippets of your content right in the SERPs.

There are different schema markup types available for different content types, including: local, restaurants, products, reviews, recipes, ratings, events, articles, apps, and more. Implementing schema markup will help increase your website CTR, which can lead to higher rankings. We’ll talk more about that later. Take advantage of Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper to determine what schema to use for your site.

Optimize Content for Long Clicks

A valuable metric which I’m sure is overlooked by many is the average time on site and whether a user is bouncing off a specific page right away. Long clicks influence rankings, which was once a speculation but now is reality, per Rand Fishkin at Pubcon.

Answering Your Users’ Direct Questions

This can be done by having an interactive website with user-engaging content that walks visitors through the funnel, page by page. This also goes back to optimizing for voice search. Having a solution to a problem will help keep visitors on your site and engaged with your content longer. Directly speaking to your audience with your content is CRUCIAL!

Social Platform Sharing and Headline Optimization

How else can long clicks be established besides from the search results? Social signals can also be a huge advocate for creating long clicks on your blog posts and website content offers. For so long, we’ve been focused on the amount of shares, when in reality, it’s the amount of long clicks your content receives from social that will be the breadwinner in achieving higher rankings for that article you spent so much time on.

To do this, your headlines must match your content and be straight to the point. That way, users aren’t surprised when they click on your article to find that it is completely irrelevant to the title, causing them to bounce off.

Storytelling with Your Content

Instead of writing some plain, boring product description, use storytelling to explain that specific product and how it can relate to your consumer. Ask yourself this, if your content was removed from the web, would anyone miss it?

Be Creative with Your Link Building Strategies

In a recent blog post, we spoke about how you can create valuable content that will increase backlinks. This is the future of link building and what every site needs to have in order for high quality sites to link back to you. Other ways to generate quality backlinks include:

  • Scraping competitor backlinks, sorting out low quality sites and going after high quality sites.
  • Crawling competitor sites to find broken links. Now look at the links pointing to that page and outreach to those sites with your page that’s not broken.
  • Discovering new sites by utilizing Twitter and other social platforms in your niche.
  • Creating infographics that speak to your audience and share them until they go viral. Once your infographic goes viral, you will see the backlinks increase.
  • Creating content on your site that speaks directly to a site you would like a link from.

Data, Data, Data: You Gotta Have It

The final important SEO factor for the future and now is accumulating as much data as you possibly can. At Pubcon, we learned that “data is the new oil.” It’s that important.

Data Capturing for Marketing

So, what kind of data should you be collecting? All of it.

Audience-Specific Data

Data-driven marketing starts with understanding the consumer and audience. Collecting this information up front is crucial to the content strategy, since you’ll want to know whether to tailor content to a specific gender, age group, geographic area, etc. Develop your ideal buyer persona based on current audience data, which can be collected from social platforms and Google Analytics.

Identify Patterns in Data Sets

Patterns tell a story with the data. There are different types of data that can provide different patterns. For example, when running a crawl report on your website, look for patterns in page types. Start by collecting the page data via crawl, identify footprints, and then sort/filter/pivot by page type. Page types can include: blog posts, archive pages, static pages, paginated comments, attachment pages, etc.

Once filtered, what do you see as the majority page type? If there’s a huge amount of a certain page type over all the other page types, chances are something is off technically with the site. You probably wouldn’t know that existed without identifying the pattern.

Other SEO patterns to be keep a lookout for may include:

  • On-page link to content ratios
  • Footer links with exact match keywords
  • Off-site anchor text exact match percentages
  • Duplicate pages and content

Use Custom Dimensions in Google Analytics

Understanding your audience can be two-fold: the buyer and the learner. In order to understand their separate ways of navigating through your site, you must use custom dimensions in Google Analytics. Once you’ve tagged a visitor as a buyer or learner, you will be able to identify patterns in how each user follows the funnel. This data is extremely important because you can better optimize for each audience, which will help increase your conversions.

Takeaways

In order to keep up with SEO, you must have these big factors in play. SEO is NOT dead, nor will it ever be dead. It’s just gotten a lot more complex. Basically if your website isn’t mobile friendly, has minimal content for users, and you’re not tracking your success, you will eventually fail. You can’t have a SEO plan without any of these factors in play. We’ll leave it with this closing quote from Pubcon:

“SEO success is adaptation. Data is critical to growth.” – Duane Forrester from Bing

If you’re overwhelmed by what goes into SEO today, don’t be. We are here to help. Give us a call.

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How to Earn Backlinks with Valuable Website Content

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Earn Backlinks with Linkbait

In order for any website to obtain any sort of search engine rankings, high quality backlinks are still necessary. Back in the day before Google updated its algorithm to get rid of spammy, manipulative link building practices, website owners could easily place their site in low quality directories or participate in some sort of link scheme to gain high rankings on Google.

Today’s link building has to be much more strategic, and you have to have content that webmasters want to link to on your site. Otherwise, you’re just wasting their time and yours because they aren’t going to link to just any site. It needs to provide their readers with something valuable. In short, the strategy for gaining highly authoritative, .edu, or .gov backlinks is to create content that’s meaningful and considered “link bait.”

What is Link Bait?

Link bait can be characterized as creating content on your website that encourages web users to share or link to, also known as viral content. Since a lot of websites are competing for the top positions in search engines, many websites are beginning to see the importance of content marketing, even for the sole purpose of increasing rankings.

Examples of what link bait can entail:

  • Blog posts
  • Infographics
  • eBooks
  • Case studies
  • Videos
  • Memes
  • How to’s
  • Stories
  • FAQs
  • Landing pages
  • Apps
  • Interactive websites or features
  • Product giveaways
  • Lists
  • Visuals

How to Create Link Bait That Encourages Users to Link to You

Creating link bait can be simpler than you think. Don’t overthink the situation. What you must understand first is your target audience. Ask yourself these primary questions to help you understand your audience and how you can develop content that will speak to that audience:

  • What is their primary problem?
  • What is the solution to their problem?
  • How can you help nurture them to reach that solution?
  • What educational content can you develop to help them potentially solve their problem?
  • What statistics can you provide to help sell your customer into learning more?
  • What is your final offer?

Create Useful Content

Now that you have those questions answered, you should have a pretty clear understanding of what kind of content can be developed on your website that would speak to your ideal audience. It’s important to keep in mind that only useful content is going to gain any sort of visibility online. You have a lot of competition that has already been creating useful content.

If you’re still stuck on the type of content that’s going to attract the right users and be shareable for their networks, think about creating content that is educational and entertaining, such as ways you can add humor to it. Keep the content highly relevant to your industry, but non-promotional. The last thing users are going to want to share is a page on your website talking about your product or your company.

Valuable Content for Backlinks

Create a Plan of Action for Your Content

Once you’ve developed a list of ideas for content, there needs to be a plan in place to promote this content so that it can start to receive the visibility it deserves. For example, if your link bait piece is an eBook, there are several things that need to be thought out in order for the promotion to be successful. Here is some additional collateral that can go into eBook promotion:

  • Dedicated landing page with quality content and optimization. This will most likely be what your users will link to, so make sure this landing page is fully optimized and speaks to them.
  • Where the content will be promoted throughout the website. If the eBook is relevant to a specific service or product you offer, promote the eBook on those relevant pages with a CTA.
  • Create link bait with other forms of link bait. Think about other content that is going to promote this offer and where to promote it. If you’re a B2B business, think about B2B social networks that would find your eBook most valuable. Create a meme or statistic graphic to give users something enticing to click on and share when sharing the link to your eBook landing page. Consider other educational content that could be turned into a blog post, and, at the end of the blog post, have the eBook be the final CTA. Do you have email contacts stored that can be segmented into lists? Send an email to those contacts and show off your eBook.
  • Promote your content in the right places. If you’re strictly targeting other business owners, think about where those business owners would spend their time online. What social networks might they be part of? What big brands might they be following? Make sure you have link bait visible to your audience in the right places online.
  • Develop the right messaging for the eBook. You want people to link to your eBook, but you have to create the right message for users to want to link to you. What do you want people to take away from this eBook? This is where those statistics can be a big help with enticing users to share and learn more. Also, this is the perfect time to add a little humor to your message, because humor can really catch someone’s attention.
  • Outreach to the right websites. Develop a list of websites that are relevant, have high authority in Google, and have trusted backlinks. Don’t be generic with your outreach approach, because everyone else is doing the same thing as you: trying to get a link. Don’t be naive and think these websites are just going to link to you when you approach them with a generic email. Be creative with the approach and have some key talking points ready about their website and EXACTLY where you see a fit for your eBook to be promoted. Whether you think a guest post would suffice or if there’s already a blog post on their site relevant to your eBook messaging, have an idea of how you’d like to promote your content on THEIR website. Being thoughtful goes a long way.

Include a Call to Action as a Final Message in the Content

Since the content shouldn’t be about your product or service, you can lead to a final CTA in your content. Every piece of content on your website should have an end goal, which is your final CTA. Make that CTA clear and concise so users are not only sharing your awesome content, but know how to reach an industry expert if they need more help. This works together with your sales funnel, nurturing website users to become qualified leads. Boom.

Boom Backlinks

Creative Link Bait Campaign Examples

There are so many ways to create link bait on your website, and existing brands have already established pieces of content that have gone viral. Some examples of existing link bait from other brands include:

Moz’s Search Engine Ranking Factors

This content piece went viral because of the visual content developed by Moz’s team to showcase different Google algorithm ranking factors. This spiked the interest of many other SEO companies who have used this content in their own blog posts and articles as a valuable source for understanding Google’s ranking factors.

Moz Search Ranking Factors Backlink Analysis

By developing this valuable piece of content, Moz has boosted the Page Authority, increased social indicators, and increased the total inbound links. You can say this content was pretty successful.

RSS Tutorial

Every blog needs to have a RSS feed. The following How To tutorial walks you through how to set up a RSS feed and why these steps are so important for websites.

Rss Tutorial Link Bait Backlinks

The success of this content lead to 2,403 backlinks, increased social indicators, and a domain authority of 74/100.

Psychology of Color Infographic

Understanding color psychology is important for any website designer or digital marketer to understand in order for websites to convert at a higher rate. showcases different colors and how they can effect moods, emotions, and more in a nutshell.

This specific infographic did better socially by creating more than 2,100 likes, more than 2,300 tweets, and more than 780 Google+1s.

100+ Ways to Conserve Water Interactive Landing Page

This page shows more than 100 tips on how to conserve water usage to help educate the world about excess water consumption.

Water Conservation Link Bait Backlinks

By creating an interactive way to educate the audience, the page authority alone is a 76/100 with more than 4,500 natural backlinks. That doesn’t even count the number of social indicators happening here. There are more than 7,900 Facebook likes, 8,240 Twitter tweets, and more than 5,500 Facebook shares.

Takeaways

Creating viral link bait is not an easy process. It definitely takes a lot of creativity, optimization, content marketing, and strategy development in order to attract natural backlinks. Many times, there is a lot of trial and error that goes into developing the right piece of content in the right form that’s going to attract the right audience. Once you’ve established the type of content users are going to share naturally and webmasters are going to link to without any issues, you can develop out your content marketing strategy to include this type of content more on your website, which leads to more backlinks and higher search rankings. The key takeaway is to create valuable content that users are going to share and want to interact with.

Don’t have time to create a content link bait strategy? Our digital marketing experts can help by developing out a viral marketing campaign tailored to your audience.
Learn More About Our Expert Viral Marketing Services Here

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Has Panda 4.2 Arrived? What to Know About The New Google Algorithm Refresh

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Panda 4.2 Google Algorithm Refresh

Have you noticed any changes in website traffic? No? It’s not a surprise that many webmasters have not noticed Panda 4.2 officially rolling out, because this one is a slow rollout: It could take months before it is complete. With that being said, a lot of us didn’t even notice this refresh that started rolling out on July 17, 2015.

What We Know About This Google Refresh So Far

  • Not a full algorithm update, just a Panda refresh
  • 2-3% of queries are being affected
  • A smaller refresh in comparison to older Panda refreshes; the previous refresh is affecting 3-5% of queries.
  • Unsure of how long this refresh will be rolling out for
  • The first Panda refresh in 10 months

Take a look at the MozCast data from the week Panda 4.2 began rolling out:
Mozcast - Google Panda 4.2 - Eminent SEO

You’ll notice a difference with Friday being cloudy, because that’s the day Google began rolling out the Panda refresh. It still doesn’t look like a huge spike, though, which is why a lot of people were unaware.

What Can I Do to Avoid Being Negatively Impacted by the Panda Refresh?

At this point, if you make changes to your website to reduce the repercussions of Panda, it’s not going to prevent this refresh from impacting your site. Once a refresh begins rolling out, you want to make sure your website is already equipped with high-quality content that is not duplicate or “thin.” Any time your website is not abiding by the Google Quality Guidelines, it could see a negative impact from an algorithm refresh or update, especially Panda, which specifically targets websites with thin content.

What you can do is run a quick crawl report for your website. If you notice any canonical issues causing duplicate content, get those fixed immediately.

Another step you can take is run a duplicate content test for internal site-wide content as well as a test for other sites on the web. Make sure there isn’t much common content on your site or worse, duplicate. You want your content to be mostly or entirely unique and high in quality.

The last thing you could do is make sure there isn’t any content on your website that’s lacking in invaluable user experience. If there are any doorway pages on your site, these could harm its search rankings.

How Do I Know if My Website Has Been Impacted?

If you’ve recently seen a sudden decline or incline in organic traffic, it could be that your website has been impacted by the newest refresh. Not many websites are showing much movement yet, but if you’ve noticed a drop within the last week and a half, that could be related to Panda 4.2. If you believe your site has been negatively impacted, read more here on how to recover from a Google penalty.

Looking to find out if your website has been impacted by this algorithm refresh? Our SEO experts can weigh in. Just give us a call to learn more about our website audits and pricing: 800.871.4130.

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5 Reasons Why Your Website Isn’t Producing Sales

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Website Sales

Experiencing high traffic volume, but low conversion rates? It’s probably because of your website. Your website is the face of your business, your online storefront, your brand identity. You want it to be a good representation of your business. When it’s not, you’ll experience very low conversion rates.

There are several important variables that go with how well a website operates and also its ability to produce quality leads. If your website isn’t constantly being updated with the best conversion practices, it will fall behind and your competitors will surge ahead of you. Below are some reasons why your website might not be producing sales:

1. Your Content Isn’t Attracting the Right Visitors

When it comes to website marketing, you need to have a solid content strategy in order to attract visitors that can convert into leads. Researching keywords that focus on producing conversions rather than just high volume is the first step. Next, you want to integrate your target keywords into the content. This includes your blog posts, social media content and your optimized website copy. All three areas should be consistent with your keyword strategy.

2. Your Website Is Outdated

Car designs have dramatically changed over the years, and still do each year. Why? So the manufacturers can eliminate any glitches in the motors and to keep up with the design trends. You can easily compare websites to cars because they both need the same things: updated designs, updated systems, on-going maintenance, etc.

Having an updated website includes elements such as: a clean, up-to-date URL structure that clearly lays out the path for users to navigate, a mobile-friendly design, a website content management system (CMS) that is search engine friendly, and much more. Just because you can easily build a website in a platform that is “drag and drop”, for example, doesn’t mean that it is search engine friendly. Sometimes using these very simple CMS systems isn’t the best plan for your long-term website strategy because they have limited capabilities for SEO.

Website designs also need to be updated every few years to stay up with today’s technology and design trends. Designs are changing for a reason, mainly because people are changing the way they use websites. If your website hasn’t been updated in a while, it’s probably outdated and not helping your business as much as it could be.

3. You Don’t Have the Budget for Website Marketing

This is something we come across a lot from smaller businesses that can’t always afford a fully managed solution. Your website marketing should be your primary focus if you expect to get more sales online. Are you investing in hiring more sales people? Why? Cold calling is an outdated sales technique. To stay up with today’s evolving marketing trends, you need to invest more into inbound marketing. It is one of the most cost-effective solutions and it always produces a strong return on investment when done correctly.

When someone is actively searching for a product or service, chances are they are a qualified buyer looking for a reputable company. If your business is lacking in online presence while they research, you’re going to lose out on sales. Think about yourself as a consumer. Would you want to have someone call you randomly with a sales pitch, or would you rather do the research yourself and contact the company with the best offer?

4. Your Website Isn’t Optimized for Conversion

The smallest things can make someone bounce off of your site. Example: it takes too long to load, your brand message isn’t clear and concise, the font is too hard to read, the background image overpowers the content, the contact information isn’t predominant, users can’t find what they searched for originally. These are all examples to consider when determining if your website is properly optimized.

Some ideas to help make your website more conversion-friendly include:

  • Add a video explaining a huge piece of important content on your site. You need the content for search engines, but the users would rather watch a video than read a long article.
  • Split test important landing pages with pay per click. It can be as simple as changing the wording in a header that encourages users to convert. Do some split testing with content changes to see which pages convert at a higher rate and make changes across the site as you find what works best for your specific audience.
  • Add trust badges and testimonials. These give users a better sense of who you are and add to the credibility and trust of your business and brand.
  • Make the phone number or contact button a primary focus in your header and multiple areas of each page of the site. This makes it easier for your potential customers to contact you without searching through the entire site.

These are just a few suggestions to keep in mind when looking at your website from a conversion perspective.

5. You Aren’t Nurturing Your Website Prospects and Leads

How many times have you filled out a form on a website and never heard back from anyone? When you don’t respond to each lead through your website with at least an email, you’re losing out on sales. If you have someone who is interested enough to fill out a contact form, that should be considered a warm lead. Those leads may not be in the buying stage yet, but they may be ready to buy in the future. Add them to an email drip campaign where your company can stay in front of them with quality content. It’s all about delighting users with content that is relevant to their interests that will keep them coming back to your site, and then nurturing them until they are ready to buy.

Closing Thoughts

If you aren’t investing a dedicated budget to your website management and marketing on a monthly basis, chances are you aren’t producing the amount of sales you need. Online marketing is a continual process of testing, researching, optimizing, and nurturing. When managed properly, your website will become profitable and your sales will continue to grow over time.

Need a strategy that is going to help your website produce sales? Learn more about our website creation services here.

 

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Why You Should Kiss Your City Landing Pages and Microsites Goodbye

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doorway pages

A few days ago Search Engine Roundtable announced that Google did a silent algorithm update targeting doorway pages. Google decided to sweep their search results and remove any keyword-targeted, or city targeted microsites and landing pages that were ranking high and added no value to the end user.

First, let’s define what a doorway page really is. In Google’s Quality Guidelines, it states that these pages or websites are created solely to rank for specific keyword phrases and capture visitors with generic phrases. Examples of doorway pages may include:

  • Multiple keyword or city-focused domain names that funnel users to different pages or websites.
  • Dedicated landing pages on the site with sole purpose of capturing users with a target keyword phrase or city that may funnel them to another page on the site.

More about doorway pages here.

How to Identify These Landing Pages and Microsites

In order to prevent your website from being penalized by Google or losing a massive amount of organic traffic, you have to make sure these websites and landing pages add value to the end user. Google’s primary goal is to create a better user experience for their users, and when your website is trying manipulate that experience for their customers, they’re going to penalize you.

If you have multiple zip code pages, city pages, or broad keyword pages on your site that contain duplicate or thin content, chances are these aren’t providing a valuable experience to your users. Ask yourself this: Is this page or website valuable because my users need this information or is it only created to rank in the search results? Is the landing page only created to focus on keyword strategy or does the user need to know this information to purchase my product or service? You can easily tell if these pages or websites are valuable or if they are manipulative, grey-hat SEO techniques.

Why You Should Get Rid of Thin Content Immediately

  1. This technique is outdated. Google is constantly updating their algorithms to target websites that are “trying to get away with something”, so if it’s working now, don’t expect that last much longer.
  2. If the pages do start to rank it is only going to cause Google to manually review your site.. When Google does a manual review of your site and finds thin content pages, don’t be surprised when they penalize you and you have to remove them anyways.
  3. City or keyword stuffed domain microsites are one of the most obvious grey-hat link building tactic. Remember that huge update that happened a couple years ago called Penguin? Your site will immediately be banned when Google sees this and could be banned from their index indefinitely. This isn’t a matter of if, but when.
  4. This could cause you to lose leads. Since these pages and websites have no value to the user experience, your visitors may just click off the page or website immediately. Especially if it looks spammy and the content isn’t very good with no call to action. You will definitely lose leads this way.
  5. These websites and landing pages can cause duplicate content. When you’re writing about the same service or product across 30 pages or multiple sites, it can be difficult to not accidentally write the same exact thing. A lot of times these pages are just duplicated with the SEO swapped out per page, but the body of the content is exactly the same. Again, this is going to cause Google to manually review your website and you could lose all of that organic traffic you were so excited about getting.

Closing Thoughts

When your primary intent is to manipulate Google using thin content with these spammy websites and landing pages, there is no doubt it will catch up with you eventually. Don’t think you’re smarter than Google because you thought you won with a high ranking landing page, this is only going to cause Google to look at your site manually if it passed the algorithm update.

Our advice to business owners and other SEO companies is to always think about the user, just like Google is. You can’t go wrong when you are constantly thinking about user experience rather than how you can manipulate search engines into ranking your pages higher. SEO is meant to be a long-term investment, not a short-term win. Any short-term win will result in a penalty that costs more to fix than just investing in your website by doing things the right way the FIRST time.

Was your website negatively impacted by this algorithm update? We can help. Just give us a call. Experts are standing by: 800-871-4130

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The Importance of a Website Content Audit During a Re-Design and How to Do It

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content-audit-dog

Content audits are primarily done before marketing begins and during the website re-design stage. We always recommend doing a content audit on a website BEFORE starting the re-design, especially if it is a larger website that has a lot of history. A content audit is necessary in order to properly keep track of all the content that is going to be included in the new site.

What is Included in a Website Content Audit?

A website content audit involves exporting the pages of the site using a tool and manually going through the pages of the site to get a better understanding of the content strategy, navigation architecture, and on-page SEO. The important information that is needed includes:

  • Navigation Title
  • Page Name
  • All Page URL’s
  • Meta Title
  • Meta Description
  • 301 Redirect Table
  • Keyword Research
  • Comments

This information can be hosted in an excel file. More on the process below.

Website Content Audit Process

Everyone performs their website content audits differently. There isn’t really a right or wrong way to do it as long as all of the necessary information is easy to access and clearly defined.

Step One: Run a Crawl Report

The best way to begin gathering content information for the site is by simply running a crawl report. This will produce necessary elements including: URL, meta title, meta description, and more. Highlight areas of the crawl report that may need improvement such as: missing meta titles or descriptions, long title tags, missing header tags, etc. By keeping this information in a separate tab, you will know if the site needs to be re-siloed, has missing content and SEO, etc. This also allows you to see all of the URLs of the site which can help you with your next step.

crawl report

Step Two: Layout the Navigation

In the same spreadsheet, different tab, begin manually going through each page of the site in order. Gather the title for the top level navigation first. Then begin gathering titles of secondary navigation pages in a secondary column. Include the URLs in the third column. Comments for each page in the fourth column. This makes it really easy to see what the focus strategy is per page at a high level. This also helps create the correct silo architecture each site should have for better rankings.

Step Three: 301 Redirect Table if Needed

When going through the navigation and content of the website, you’ll probably notice redundancies in pages, or find certain pages that are located under the wrong top level navigation. With those, you want to make sure they are properly 301 redirected, so there are no 404 errors created from moving the pages. This also is a necessary if the website has any backlinks pointing to specific pages within the site. 301 redirects are Google-friendly redirects. In the column next to your landing page URLs, create a column next to that titled “301 URL”. Create the new name of the URL so that it includes the proper category names needed to be properly siloed.

For example:

Old URL: www.example.com/plumbing/

You want the plumbing page to be hosted under the ‘Services’ silo.

New URL: www.example.com/services/plumbing/

Pretty simple, just time consuming if you have a ton of URLs that need to be properly siloed.

content audit

Step Four: Keyword Research

In order to properly optimize each landing page of the site, you have to understand how users are searching for your product or service. In a separate tab of the same excel file, you can use the Google Keyword Planner to discover keyword opportunities. This was explained in our recent blog post more in detail: How Content and Links Work Together for Better Organic Marketing

Step Five: Get to Work!

Now that you have all of the content information properly laid out in an excel document, you can get to work. Refer to your crawl report to prioritize which pages need to be re-written and optimized by looking for errors that stand out. Use your keyword research to incorporate the right keywords in each page. Once those errors and pages are complete, you can refer to the new website architecture for any new pages that may need to be written. A lot of re-architecture means writing pages that were missing before. Get those done next or simultaneously with the other pages that have errors. Lastly, implement the new optimized content with the 301 redirects.

Why a Website Content Audit is Necessary for a Successful Re-Design

As you can see, there are many moving pieces to a content audit. Some companies are quick to sell a website re-design and simply move existing content over. The content should be part of the re-design process because it is a huge contributing factor to the overall user experience and how Google indexes and ranks the site. This can easily be overlooked in the re-design process which can lead to issues later such as:

  • Loss in website rankings when 301 redirects aren’t properly implemented
  • Duplicate content issues
  • Missed opportunities for proper on-page optimization with rankings and conversion
  • Technical website errors

These are just to name a few. The website content audit needs to be done in order to catch any errors and mistakes during the process.

The content audit also helps set up opportunities for future months of marketing. When a site has a fresh design, fresh content, and fresh navigation, it will be clear if anything is missing from the content. For on-going marketing, you can collect ideas for new landing pages that can be developed in future months which will help with the organic SEO and the overall user-experience, leading to increased conversions.

When the new design is live there is also a final step, which is to review the work for accuracy. Even though you laid it out all pretty in an excel file, things still may be missed. Run a new crawl report to find any missing elements and manually go through each page to see if anything stands out. Refer to our website checklist to make sure everything is cohesive with your strategy and you’ve addressed everything found in the initial audit.

Bottom Line

In order to reduce organic traffic downtime, increase organic traffic from the re-design, and set up future months of content strategy for the website; always start with a content audit. The content audit works hand in hand with the overall sales funnel of the website. If the website is hard to navigate, missing important content, and not properly optimized per page – you’re losing money.

Learn more about how we can help you with your re-design by auditing your site here, or call us today: 800.871.4130

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How Content and Links Work Together for Better Organic Marketing

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content and links

Link building has dramatically changed in the past couple years with all of the Google algorithm updates. With the changes a lot of people started thinking that content marketing is the new SEO. That isn’t true, but SEO has changed to include a lot more content in the strategies. Both are needed to build a strong organic marketing strategy.

The Difference

Content marketing and link building work together, however, they are totally different techniques. Link building includes seeking out relevant websites and sources related to the primary keywords that the website should rank for. Content marketing is more of an inbound marketing technique used to attract target customers and guide them through the sales funnel through content..

How They Work Together in Your Organic Marketing Campaigns

Quality content can acquire natural backlinks, while quality backlinks can create conversation and more content. Same goes for each landing page on your website, the content needs to answer the end user’s problem in order to have a high conversion rate. Here are some more ways these two work together:

It All Begins with the Right Keyword Strategy and Website Content

Keyword research is is a must if you expect to attract the users who are looking for a solution your company can offer. Whenever we put together a custom strategy, we always include an initial research phase that helps set us develop the on-going organic marketing strategy and that phase includes keyword discovery and research.

After researching appropriate keywords and laying out a sold strategy, the keywords need to be implemented in the website content and on-page SEO.. Each page should have a primary root phrase along with supporting phrases that are integrated into the meta data and throughout the content so that it flows naturally.

Once the page of the website is optimized for the selected keywords, it is appropriate to write a blog post to promote that page and link to it internally, also using the same keyword strategy.

With today’s link building tactics, it looks unnatural to have only anchor text links pointing to a specific URL within a website. This is why the keyword strategy within the content of the website is so important. Links still need to point to the page for it to rank, but the content is how search engines are going to determine the keywords that page should ran for.

Users Naturally Share and Link to Quality Content

Another way you can get content and links work together is by producing quality content that users will link to. In-depth content pieces are typically linked to the most, which can include: infographics, eBooks, webinars, case studies and blog posts. If the content is suitable for the buyer persona you are targeting, this is also a great way to increase leads. Capture their information with a landing page form that is required in order for them to receive this beautiful piece of content. Encourage these users and leads to share and link to your content by having social sharing icons readily available on the content and landing page.

Leverage Social Media to Target Other Top Influencers

Content marketing isn’t only blog posts and eBooks, it’s also social media. Social indicators can help build exposure and rankings for a piece of content. For the in-depth content pieces, utilize Twitter and tweet it out to others in the industry. Don’t spam people, but target a few influencers who you know would be interested in your content piece specifically. More retweets and shares means more social indicators. Social indicators not only build exposure, but they help other linking look more natural to the search engines. You really have to have social presence and other links coming in regularly if you want your linking to appear organic. One type of linking only can look spammy.

Link to Your Content as a Primary Call to Action on Blog Posts

When there is a specific blog post that is ranking high in the SERPs from links and shares, you want to make sure you capture those users. A huge part of SEO is user behavior. You want users to stay on your website longer, so having a primary call to action at the end of each blog post will keep users interested and wanting to learn more. This tells search engines that your content is relevant and high quality. Adding a button at the end of your blog post that links to the landing page where your eBook is hosted will not only capture leads, but keep users on your site longer. Blog posts can attract users through high rankings from links, while the call to action will nurture them through the funnel and help turn them into a qualified lead. This is just another great example of how content and links work side by side.

Takeaways

Content and links work together to produce increased website viability. Search engines LOVE fresh content and so do users. When a piece of content is keyword-rich and has quality links and shares pointing to it, it not only increases your organic presence, but you can capture leads at the same time. The other perk is people will naturally link to and share content that is high in quality and useful for them which, in turn, helps build your organic presence naturally. And let’s face it, that is ultimately what the search engines want anyways.

Need help with content creation and organic marketing? Call today and we can help: 800-871-4130

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Team Eminent SEO

Eminent SEO provides strategic SEO campaigns with measurable results along with expert website design, development, pay per click, content and social media and organic website marketing. 800.871.4130.

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