If you’ve ever wondered what are the benefits of working with an SEO agency, instead of optimising your website yourself, we’ve got some insights that might help you to understand what makes an SEO agency a great marketing partner.

As a leading digital marketing agency in Manchester, the team here at Digital Next know a thing or two about executing SEO strategies that work. There are a number of benefits to outsourcing your SEO to an agency, and you can bet the benefits will outweigh the cost in the long run too.

So, if you’re hoping for some insight into hiring an SEO agency, look no further.

Digital next

Good SEO takes time

No matter the business you’re in, it’s safe to say that you likely don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to marketing resources; especially if you’re a business owner. While some businesses may turn to hiring an in-house marketing team, an SEO agency can provide you with a ready-made department who can work as an extension of your business.

SEO executives and account managers deal with search optimisation day in, day out, and can provide you with complete transparency. What’s more, they are also on hand to offer full reporting so you know exactly what services you’re getting and what impact it’s having on your business.

SEO is too important to ignore

In today’s digital age, not having an SEO strategy in place can be detrimental to your business. SEO is not just necessary in getting ahead of your competitors, but also staying ahead. Our SEO team understand that the strategies are a long game and can help you months and years down the line.

Paying attention to SEO now could see your business reaping the rewards for a long time to come.

Digital Next the sharp

Cut through the noise

The world of SEO can be a complicated one if you don’t know it very well, but luckily an SEO agency has the expertise to understand exactly what needs to be done and when. SEO is forever changing, with new algorithm updates, and it can be difficult to keep up.

What’s more, SEO agencies have their finger on the pulse and know what the most important ang significant ranking signals are, so they can identify what needs to be fixed or improved on your website.

SEO agencies can turn traffic into sales

SEO agencies have great insights that can help you turn search visibility into new customers, which can be hugely valuable in helping customers travel through the sales funnel.

At Digital Next, we are a full service agency which means you can also gain access to content marketing experts, web developers and paid search specialists. This means you can unlock the benefits of marketing campaigns outside of SEO, for even further advantages of being visible online.

Finding the right SEO agency in Manchester

We are a full service digital marketing agency, going above and beyond to help you get the most out of your online business. Make sure your digital strategy is hitting the mark, with Digital Next as your marketing partner.

To find out more about what we do, or to get a tailored proposal to determine what’s next for your business, get in touch today.

Whether you’re already involved in content marketing for your brand, or you’re just starting out, it’s important that you understand the weight content can carry for your business. Many people will assume that having a content marketing strategy simply means publishing a blog every now and again with something interesting. While this is definitely part of it, content marketing goes much further than that.

A content strategy requires careful thought, planning and execution; all aspects that are time-consuming and needing ample resources to carry out effectively. It’s likely that you’ve been put off investing in it for these very reasons, especially if you’re a small team or just starting out as a brand. However, we believe that content marketing should underpin the rest of your digital strategy; after all, content is something that’s used everywhere for pretty much everything. Content can also influence many other marketing strategies and help to drive better results. Still not sure? Let us give you a few reasons why you should consider investing in a content marketing strategy.

Content marketing complements all other marketing strategies

As mentioned, content strategies have the ability to reinforce and support other areas of your marketing efforts. Whether you’re running a PPC campaign, implementing SEO or creating social media ads, having a content strategy can tie them all in together and give you more opportunities for creativity and originality.

54% of surveyed UK marketers have a documented content strategy, while 93% of marketers agree that creativity and skill when it comes to content creation is very valuable.

The content in your emails can contribute to a higher click-through rate, while web content fuels conversions and rankings. When you put it like that, suddenly content marketing becomes inescapable.

Content can inspire trust and loyalty

Many customers will read content about a brand before engaging with it; often to find out more information, or to make sure it’s what they’re looking for. User-generated content can reassure customers that they’re going to get what they pay for; through authoritative branded content, industry experts writing guest posts about you or even guest posting on other respected websites in your industry.

These content marketing strategies can paint a trustworthy picture of your brand and set you apart from competitors, so it’s important that you’re putting out the right content with the right message. 20% of marketers struggle to deliver content consistently, citing the need for investing in extra resource to help fill the gaps.

You can measure its success

It doesn’t matter what marketing strategy you’re deploying; the bottom line is that you want to see results. While it’s easy to measure PPC campaigns or track keywords, you shouldn’t neglect tracking your content marketing efforts.

You can measure results within your content strategy by identifying KPIs such as reach, engagement and social sharing. 38% of surveyed UK marketers aren’t clear on what an effective or successful content marketing campaign looks like, which could have an impact on content strategies moving forward. After all, if you don’t know what works, it’s more difficult to drive further victories.

16% of marketing teams struggle to demonstrate how content marketing has increased audience engagement, with 13% not able to show how content has increased number of leads. Investing in content with a dedicated marketing agency means you have a helping hand in creating content that is both successful and measurable.

Content marketing is diverse

The majority of UK businesses’ content marketing is organised through a small team serving the entire organisation, which can put pressure on time and resource. Creating blogs is just the tip of the iceberg; email marketing, video marketing and infographics are all forms of content and can all impact your online presence.

Allowing your business to run around the clock, releasing relevant content in engaging formats can put you in a strong position for success.

Choosing to work with a digital agency that can enhance your existing efforts can make a world of difference, helping you to construct and implement content strategies that drive traffic and results for your brand in the long run.

With Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas all on the horizon, it’s important that both your business and your website are ready for the busiest period of the year. It’s also crucial that your website is functional all year round, as adverts and other seasonal trends can provide spikes in sales and traffic. Your online marketing must be spot on if you want to make a difference to your sales and traffic.

The Bank of England revealed that a typical household spends around £2000 a month. However, in the run up to Christmas the same household will spend £500 more in the month of December, and it’s not just on presents. We eat out more and drink more too; well, it is the season to be merry after all! On top of that, in 2016, the UK spent a huge £1.23bn on Black Friday. Suddenly, the pressure mounts on having a website and an online marketing strategy that performs to its optimum.

As Black Friday has expanded to include Cyber Monday, some retailers are also offering deals in the run-up and aftermath of the huge sale events too. This means your business will experience busier and busier periods each year. So, how do you make sure you can handle the influx of extra customers in your busy periods?

Increasing conversions

It’s no use driving people to your website and increasing traffic if they aren’t converting. The customer journey can sometimes be a long one, and you’ve got to keep them interested until they have made it to their basket and paid. In other words, customers can drop off your site at a number of different points, so it’s in your interest to make sure it’s a seamless and easy path from browsing to buying.

Even the smallest tweaks to your website and online marketing can result in a higher conversion rate, which is perfect if you’re building up to a busy period. One of the key places to start is your mobile website.

Two-thirds of mobile users prefer a website to using an app, so making sure your website is mobile friendly is no longer a recommendation; it’s mandatory. Go a step further than just making sure your website has a responsive design by improving your mobile-specific SEO. This refers to things like localised search and device-specific speed optimisation.

Building trust

The public are becoming more savvy when it comes to online shopping and making a decision on a retailer. With this in mind, you should be doing everything you can to reassure your visitors that you are legitimate and trustworthy; it’s too easy for them to drop off your site and head straight to a competitor if they see something they aren’t sure of.

You can measure so many different metrics on your website to see performance, but trust isn’t one of them. Make sure your website has things like an ‘About Us’ page, links to your social media accounts and customer testimonials. This can prove to your customers that you are what you claim to be.

online marketing

A personalised experience

Personalising your service now goes further than just putting a customers’ name in the subject line of an email. As the capabilities of AI increase, your ecommerce store has a better chance of predicting your customers’ next steps and making it easier for them to take it.

Knowing your shoppers’ habits through online marketing metrics can mean you’re able to predict what they’re thinking of putting in their basket and putting the perfect products right in front of them. A live chat feature can be critical in giving your website a more personal feel, while using analytics to your advantage can help you to win business where you lost it in the past.

Easy-to-navigate UX

If you’re experiencing a high number of people abandoning their baskets, it can be for a number of different reasons. Most of the time it’s because the navigation on your website is too complicated or too long-winded to get to the right page. Customers are more demanding than ever before, and are looking for a smooth, fast process to get the things they want. User experience throughout the whole website should be seamless. You should also take into consideration stages such as registration and the payment process to ensure they are fine-tuned and faultless. The easier the buying process, the less time the customer has to abandon their basket!

When it comes to creating content, our ultimate goal is to create a piece that our reader’s not only engage with, but also share it with their friends, peers or colleagues; but this can be tricky. There’s SO much content out there, more than ever before. So creating something that is unique is key to getting noticed, and getting shared!
shareworthy content

But, Why Do We Want Our Content Shared?

Well, this is simple. From a content marketing perspective, shareable content will ultimately engage an audience and enhance brand trust. Creating a thought provoking piece that is shareable will encourage an audience to remember you for all the right reasons!

Isn’t It Hard To Constantly Think of New Ideas?

No! Depending on your type of business, creating content doesn’t have to be complicated; developing a content marketing plan that spans either three or six months (or even longer in some cases!) will help you schedule relevant and share-worthy content that your audience wants to read.

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Using content calendars is a great way to see what you have coming up, helping you to create a strategy. Content marketing doesn’t have to just be a blog with some words and images thrown on it, it could be video marketing, infographics, quizzes, anything you can think of! There’s no pigeon holing when it comes to shareworthy content.

Creating Share-worthy Content

Whether you are creating content for an on-site blog or for outreach purposes, the key things to remember when you produce this content are the same. And one of the most important things we want you to remember is to not create content for contents sake, if you’re half-way through writing something,and realise that it’s a bit naff and pointless. Then stop. Re-evaluate the topic, and maybe look to link it in with something else to create a longer, in depth article that will add much more value to an overall strategy.

Here are a few quick tips for creating share worthy content:

  • Understand your audience
    There’s no point in trying to create anything unless you understand your target audience, delve deep into their demographics; age, interests, geographical location etc. can all help determine what kind of content they want to read.
  • Crafty Headline
    Now, we all know that click-bait is the devil in the content marketing world. Those crafty headlines that get you clicking on an article and discovering the content inside has nothing to do with the headline will turn your readers off, and unless you work extremely hard, they just won’t come back. Create a headline that cleverly entices your audience to want to read more
  • Use images/videos
    You know what they say “a picture says a thousand words”, well a video can say even more. Video and image content is the most shareable out there, easy to view and convert into real, engaged readers.
  • Don’t forget to share across social
    If you’ve done all of this and you’re still wondering why your content doesn’t seem to have hit the right spot, when you’ve put a lot of effort into it and thought it was the best piece ever it COULD be because you’ve failed to share it across your own social platforms. 

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Often, it is the smallest thing that could lead to the biggest impact on your marketing campaign. If you need a structured content marketing campaign that will help you create shareworthy content, contact Digital Next today.

Keywords used to be the heart and soul of every SEO campaign. Google would rank sites solely on the keywords in their content and their links. This, therefore, meant that people could judge the success of their SEO campaign purely on how well their keywords ranked. All people had to do was figure out what keywords they wanted to rank for and away they went. This made it easy for almost anyone to set up their own SEO campaign.

However, these black hat SEO ways of working are now gone, although some SEO experts still believe keywords are important. It is true that keywords do still offer some insight on how well your SEO is performing, but there are now that many factors that contribute to the ranking of your website, that the relationship between keywords and SEO success is now far weaker.

Below, we look at a range of on page factors that Google now sees as far more important that keywords.

Website Structure and Navigation

Compass
 

Google now sees website structure as a hugely important factor in terms of how it ranks in the SERPs. As Google has become more sophisticated over time, it has also become more thoughtful about its users. If your website is structured smartly and is easy for users to navigate, then Google will reward you for this. They would rather you use a user-friendly website than be pulling your hair out over a badly constructed, hard to navigate website. The basic structure that Google believes websites should follow is as follows; header, body, sidebars and footer, all including relevant information.

One way to improve the navigation of your website is with internal links. The more internal links on your website, the shorter the journey for a user to travel from one page to another, thus making your site more user-friendly. It is also very important to have a crawlable XML Sitemap that lays out your site. This offers a quick way to communicate directly with the search engines and helps you get new pages and content indexed quicker.

Keywords Placements

It is obvious that keywords aren’t completely dead; Google still needs some form of text to figure out what it is your company/website does. There used to be a relationship between keyword quantity and rankings. However, as explained before, this black hat technique has now retired. Now, Google prefers to see highly relevant, natural information in and around your website with small doses of keywords included in them.

You can break your site down into key areas in terms of where Google offer more authority for keywords. Meta information and headers take top priority with body copy second, and side bars and footers taking the least priority.

Meaning

With the progression of Google’s algorithm comes sophistication and intelligence. Over the years it has developed so much it is scary and it continues to improve every day. In the past, Google took the keywords on your website and paired them with relevant search queries. Now, Google takes in all the data from your website and makes its own assumptions of what your business does. So, theoretically, you could optimise your site for 3 separate keywords, but be placed under 1 category by Google.

Therefore, when optimising your site today, you should forget about keywords altogether and focus on making sure your site is natural, to the point and highlights exactly what you do as a company.

Semantic Search

Back in August 2013, Google introduced the Hummingbird algorithm. The major talking point of this update was the switch to ‘conversational search’. Before the Hummingbird update, Google would try and find matches for certain words e.g. for the search “Where is the cheapest place to buy a sofa in Kent” Google would take ‘buy’ and ‘sofa’ and try and find pages to match these key terms. However, the Hummingbird update took search to the next level. Rather than taking specific keywords from a search, it now looks past this and looks at the meaning of the search, bringing a far more personalised and accurate SERP and reducing the importance of specific keywords.

Therefore, if your website content makes you seem like a seller of cheap sofas for locations in and around Kent, you would have a good chance of showing up in the SERP, even if your site isn’t optimised for this phrase.

hummingbird algorithm

Site Speed and Security

It’s no secret that the quicker your site loads, the better it will rank. As we know, Google are always working to the customer’s best interests and a customer is always going to want to be on a site that loads quick over one that doesn’t. Therefore, it is hugely important you work on cleaning up your site’s cache, optimising your images to make sure they are the correct format and dimension, cleaning up your code and getting rid of any unnecessary scripts etc. It is also good to know that SSL encryption helps give your rankings a boost. The key here is to make sure your site is as fast and secure as it can be.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are now many factors to consider over your choice of keywords when it comes to making sure your website ranks.

The onsite optimisation of your site is now far more complex than making sure you have the right keywords in the right places. You now have to factor in Google’s intelligent understanding of the human language and remember that it will make its own assumption of what your company/website does, rather than you telling it through specific keyword phrases.

So, to conclude, the importance of keywords has dropped significantly over the years due to Google giving more importance to other factors, and although they are still part of an SEO strategy, they have fallen down the pecking order a fair bit.

Local SEO first began to make headway in 2005, thanks to the introduction of Google Maps, and Maps data being merged into the Local Business Centre. This allowed users to search for specific businesses. Since then, local SEO has developed and evolved into something much larger; and much more influential. In 2007, Google began to present local business information in SERPs while also letting business owners have more control over their Google listings.

Google Updates for Local SEO

Over nearly the past decade, local SEO has continued to grow thanks to Google’s regular updates, bringing us the likes of Venice, Pigeon and more recently Possum. These updates have allowed for a number of different strategies, including unique results and specific keywords based on location.

possum google update

With the launch of Google My Business in 2014, it’s clear that local SEO is still an ongoing development that continues to be streamlined and improved.

Now, local SEO is more useful, and more competitive, than ever before. 46% of all searches on Google are local, while 50% of those searching for local results are looking for business information such as addresses. The most recent update, Possum, has diversified local rankings; including an update of Google’s filter that applies to local results. Businesses that originally fell outside of the city limits have benefitted, while the physical location of the searcher is now more important.

What’s more, Google’s Local Pack has now been reduced from 7 to 3. This was rolled out across all platforms, and all countries almost immediately. Desktop search results now appear similar to mobile searches; 3 Local Pack search results fit perfectly on a mobile screen. It may be that Google did this from a user experience perspective, or it simply just wanted to show the most relevant results. The Local 3 Pack appears in the top spot in 93% of searches with local intent.

local seo

But why should you really get involved in local SEO? What if you’re a national brand? Local SEO can help businesses of all sizes, in all locations. The amount of ‘near me’ searches has increased drastically over the last 1-2 years, so even if you have stores all over the country, you can implement local SEO to help people find your closest location.

At the end of the day, if you don’t have a successful local SEO strategy, your customers might never find you. Your aim is to dominate your area when it comes to your industry.

So how do you create a local SEO strategy that will boost your business’ ranking and ensure that you stand out amongst your competitors? Local search ranking factors have changed over the past years, making it more difficult to rank for local search keywords, but there are a number of strategies you can put in place to help.

Create a Google My Business Page

Having a Google My Business page is still very relevant, and Google have been pushing this and encouraging local businesses to claim their page. Adding as much information as possible to a Google My Business page can help to set your business apart from competitors and those who haven’t verified their own listing.

By adding more information, you can also increase your chances of appearing in Google’s Local Pack.

google my business

Write local content

To allow your business to compete successfully for local SEO, it’s crucial that you are writing local content on your site. This could mean anything from regularly updating your blog with local news and events, to creating city-specific pages for your website.

Write your content with city-specific keywords and unique pages for each of your locations, if your business operates in multiple cities.

Create authoritative backlinks

Taking advantage of online business directories can provide those necessarily backlinks to your local business’ website. Many citation sites actually have credibility with Google, which can have a positive effect on where it shows in the search results.

In some cases, online directories can actually dominate the top few searches, helping your business to appear at the top.

Depending on your business-type, you may benefit from different kinds of backlinks. For example, if you are a small local business in one town, make sure you’re listed on the business directories that operate in that town. This can ensure you are found for searches relating to your business or your area. If you’re a national business with various locations, you can aim a little higher and reach out to bigger publications in order to boost your outreach efforts that little bit more.

Encourage online reviews

It’s recently been revealed that online reviews are a major factor in achieving higher local rankings. Sites with the most reviews will actually outrank other businesses, while positive reviews will naturally help to gain customers’ trust and even attract new business.

local seo

A recent confirmation from Google themselves has revealed that ads are now coming to the Local Pack. The first result in the 3-pack will now be a paid-for ad, with the following two results being organic listings.

It’s clear that quick fix SEO no longer works; both customers and Google itself are cleverer than ever before and are incredibly savvy to shortcuts taken by local businesses. Development in local SEO has come a long way, and more diverse strategies are needed to ensure your local business ranks high on Google.

To get your local SEO strategy up to scratch, get in touch with our SEO experts!


In our recent blog, Ditch What You Know, And Open Your Mind To Multi-Channel Search, we discussed the many ways in which you can go beyond SEO and PPC to improve your digital footprint, but let’s not leave the staples behind just yet. Today, we’ll discuss how by combining the two you can greatly benefit your business’ online presence and success.

The Partnership     

SEO and PPC are integral parts of any digital marketing strategy, yet many businesses choose to focus solely on one while ignoring the other completely. While certain strategies are best suited for certain situations, e.g. small start-up companies choosing the cheaper, slower SEO over the more expensive, instant reward PPC; it is generally better for most to combine the two to gain the most success. Even some companies that offer these services themselves mainly treat them separately with little communication, when in fact their goal is the same: ‘to achieve the most effective results, as efficiently as possible’.

Double the Data

Double the Data - SEO

The main point to bring up first, in support of a combined SEO and PPC strategy, is that they provide a large amount of similar data that you can funnel into your digital marketing strategy such as:

  • Click through rate (CTA)
  • Bounce, entrance and exit rates
  • Visitor time and sessions
  • Conversion rate

Using this data, you can focus specific keywords that are gaining the most results and are rewarding you the most, enabling you to make smarter and quicker decisions to get the most out of it.

Tip: Double the strategies, double the data to work with. 

SEO Vs. PPC? Or, SEO and PPC?

Google conducted over 400 studies in 2011 on whether search ads cannibalise their organic traffic, if search ads were paused, would clicks on organic search results increase, and make up for the loss in paid traffic?

As revealed in the collection of all the data,

The percentage of paid clicks that are not made up for by organic clicks when search ads are paused. The results were surprising. On average, the incremental ad clicks percentage across verticals is 89%. This means that a full 89% of the traffic generated by search ads is not replaced by organic clicks when ads are paused. This number was consistently high across verticals.”

This shows that using both PPC and SEO has a huge effect on the results generated. Conclusively, it is only when they work together on the same page that they provide the results you are looking for in these campaigns.

Visibility

One of the most important results of combining SEO and PPC would be the extra visibility it provides. A solid strategy for both would provide added results on search engine result pages (SERPs) enabling your business to appear twice on the same page and double the clicks, which could potentially lead to doubling your revenue.

Visibility - PR

Since Google removed the ads in the sidebar to the right of search results, it has increased the value of paid for ads and drove up competition of organic search. With less room on page one for organic search, it becomes vital that you ensure every avenue is explored to elevate your business ahead of your competitors.

Along with this, providing high quality content enables information to appear about your business on the sidebar, increasing your visibility by a large margin. This further stresses the need for a multi-channel digital marketing approach starting with the combination of PPC and SEO.

Some business owners may cancel their PPC ad campaign once they have organically reached top 3, but don’t be too hasty. What’s better? A paid ad at the top of Google and top 3 organically, or one organic link that’s top 3? The choice is easy.

 

Negative PR

A combination of SEO and PPC can help in regards to bad reviews either left maliciously or genuinely. It is almost unavoidable in most industries and you must be prepared for when it does, or at least have strategies in place to dampen the effect. You can greatly control the conversions by controlling a certain term in regards to the negative PR.

Negative PR - PPC

A real-world example of this would be the BP Gulf Oil Spill in 2010, for a while after the event, BP paid for PPC ads to be linked to the keyword ‘oil spill’. This way, anyone searching for details on the oil spill would be shown a page about BP’s clean-up efforts at the top of the list, where a large majority of people would choose the first link shown. Similar strategies like this and a mix of SEO would go a long way to ensure your brand is protected from negative reviews.

Conclusion

In summary, when businesses merge SEO and PPC they gain excellent results from their digital marketing campaigns at an exponential rate. Reducing or completely shutting off one side of this partnership greatly reduces the results. Depending on your situation, this could be a great way to give your company the boost it deserves.

Get in touch with our Digital Next SEO and PPC teams today to see how they can help you get the results you’re striving for!

Content Marketing and SEO have long been described as two people working hand in hand to improve the performance of your online presence. Like Batman and Robin, they make a great team! Fighting crimes, wearing Lycra and attracting a clearly defined audience, but being two separate marketing strategy techniques entirely. However, it has now been said that instead of them being a Batman and Robin team, they are actually more of a Batman and Bruce Wayne collaboration. They are two different personalities in the same person rather than two separate people.

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But what does all this mean? Does it mean that content marketers are walking around wearing capes? Does it mean that we need to start thinking about our alter egos? Let’s just start with some simple definitions and go from there.

What is Content Marketing and SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. The strategies and techniques used to increase the amount of visitors to a company’s website. Therefore, by creating a high-ranking placement in the search results on search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. Companies can see that their online presence is improved with a better SEO plan, campaign and strategy but what about Content Marketing?

Content Marketing, on the other hand is, the strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing relevant and consistent content to retain/attract a clearly defined market audience to drive up profitable customer action.

How Do They Work Together?

SEO without Content Marketing is rather difficult. The content might be fantastic, the social side of the website might be great. However, if there are no strategies in place to promote it online, then no one is going to see it. You need to market your content! SEO is not all about traffic, views and conversions, its success is based on content planning and promotion.

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If you lose the Bruce Wayne in Batman, he becomes a scary guy in a dark mask solving crimes. If you take Batman’s personality away from Bruce Wayne, you end up with a millionaire that has nothing to spend his money on except for lavish parties (that might sound great but the hangover would last a lifetime).
They work well together, so why think of them separately?

Why Are We Telling You All This?

When it comes to increasing your audience and retaining that number for the future, it all boils down to a great SEO campaign. With three aspects of your marketing strategy: Social, content and SEO, you will see that a multichannel approach works well for any business.

Once you find the right digital agency, you can improve your online presence and rank higher on search engine sites. You can then beat off any competition, increase your audience and therefore improve profitable customer action in your business.

Seo and Content Marketing

Don’t sit there with a great Facebook following, average rankings on Google and poorly marketed site content when you could have so much more, contact Digital Next today.

Link building is a hugely vital facet of any digital strategy as the process of acquiring links has shifted over the years to ensure that links are earned for the provision great content. Now while this aim should be a coherent commonality shared by anyone looking to generate more links, it is often misconceived that quantity of links is more important than quality. However, I strongly refute this point and would much rather have one link from a top-tier site, than 10 links from less authoritative sites. “But why would you prefer this, Tom?” you may find yourself asking, well, read on and you’ll find out why.

Just to be clear, this isn’t just another one of those ‘Link Quality vs. Quantity’ debates because the best answer should be obvious… 

Quantitative Link Building

In the days of old, quantitative link building worked exceptionally well and garnered pretty quick results for those who were willing to spend more than their competitors. However, as we’re all very much aware, Google’s updates ground this practice to a halt and eradicated black hat SEO from the face of the digital landscape. Because of this, a quantitative approach to link building has naturally become less effective in generating the desired results. Why? Well it’s simply because Google’s updates over the past few years have guided SEO practices to focus on creating quality content to earn links, rather than buy them.

building blocks link building

Fundamentally, though, there is no set number of links that you need to accrue per month, and similarly, there is no set pace at which you should acquire links either. In fact, as long as your link building efforts and pace that you acquire them is natural, then you’ll be plain sailing. Google will only ever take action against websites whose link building efforts appear unnatural; by this I mean websites that will build 100 links one day, then 0 the next, then another 50 the day after, then 0 the next day. All this will indicate to Google’s algorithm is that your rate of link building appears to be automated, or at least spammy, so try to make it look as natural as possible. Ultimately, as long as your links are from good sources, the pace at which you get links shouldn’t matter.

So we’ve just established that quantitative link building isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and in some circumstances it can be unavoidable, but how does this compare to a more qualitative approach?

Qualitative Link Building

As mentioned in another of our past blog posts entitled ‘Link Building Myths’, quality links trump quantity every time. And referring back to my earlier statement pertaining to my preference in link building techniques, I’m going to explain why you should be focusing your efforts and resource on securing less links on more authoritative websites, as opposed to more links on less authoritative websites. Hence, the qualitative link building approach.

A couple of months ago we published a blog on the go-to-site for all the latest industry news, Search Engine Journal (SEJ), and the results that we monitored in the days following the post going live were somewhat eye-opening…

What did we do?

To generate this link, we created a blog post titled ‘Voice Search: The Future of Search?’ which was published on our website. Following our promotion, this was noticed by one of the team at SEJ who took it upon themselves to contact us enquiring as to whether they could include this within one of their pieces. We obliged, of course, then a week or so later they published the piece (on 30th June) titled ‘Proper Local SEO Citation Building Helps Users’ with a ‘DOFOLLOW’ link back to our Voice Search blog.

What were the results?

The results generated to as a consequence of this link acquisition provided an uplift in organic rankings, and in turn, an increase in traffic as a direct consequence of this enhanced exposure and trust. When tracked over the next 30 days, our website increased 147 keyword positions for a number of our major terms.

rankings graph

Not only that, but our blog post on Voice Search dropped in at position 21 for the term ‘voice search’ and continues to fluctuate on a daily basis anywhere between positions 11 and 37. With this increase in ranking for our major terms, as well as the newly garnered ranking for our blog post on Voice Search (which has a monthly search volume of 4,400), we saw a traffic increase of over 12% across all of our keywords as a consequence. Moreover, when reviewing its performance after those 30 days, we saw that it has continued to generate traffic at a steady rate. As such, the attraction to our Voice Search blog has exceeded the usual two-week ‘honeymoon’ period where it would naturally generate the most interest.

Summary

In summary, when you’re devising a strategy for manual outreach always focus on quality rather than quantity. If you create quality content that people want to read and distribute well, then it’ll generate results on its own. Ultimately, though, no matter what pace you acquire links, as long as they’re from relevant, trustworthy and authoritative sites then it’s more likely to generate better results.

Today it has been confirmed that Google Penguin 4.0 has started to roll out, and that it is now part of the core algorithm.

For several weeks now there has been chatter about an update from Google. We have seen some great movement ourselves across a range of industries, all with very different backgrounds (when it comes to historic link building activity). Google conveniently confirmed a local-based update but was also testing the latest and last Penguin refresh that they named Penguin 4.0. During the last few weeks, Google have actively denied a Penguin update was to blame.

What is Penguin 4.0?

To put this into perspective, Panda 4.0 is the 4th iteration of the Panda update that was first implemented in April 2012 when Google first dropped the update. It hit the industry hard and devastated rankings for a large number of websites. As part of their work, Google also for the first time sent out messages in Webmaster Tools to inform people they had been penalised.

Penguin was used to combat spam links and their ability to influence the search results. The 4th update for Google Penguin has come over 4 years after the first, which is a very long time in the land of Google. As a comparison, the first and last confirmed Panda update, which combatted poor content, was also a 4-year period, starting in 2011 and ending in 2015. In this time, they rolled out 28 confirmed updates.

Why is it the last?

With this latest update, Google have also said that Penguin is now part of the core algorithm. Before this, Google used to collect up all the data it needed for the algorithm to work, then systematically pushed out the update to the main search results. This is when they confirmed updates to the world and they get numbered. Now the Google Penguin algorithm is core, it means it just works in real time. When you make changes or carry out work within links, Google reacts once it sees the work.

This means that in the past, many agencies and webmasters that did work to clean up any spam links that a website had didn’t have any effect for up to a year or more when Google pushed out more updates. We were aware of this in October 2014 when Google released the Penguin 3.0 update.

What does Google Penguin actually mean?

Very little! As an agency, we very rarely need to do links work anymore to rectify link penalties. We have seen some good increases in our clients’ rankings over the last couple of weeks, probably from work we did back in 2014, or checks on disavow files that have been made when a client comes on board, but in reality, spam links are not a huge issue and haven’t been for a long time.

These updates first hit in 2012; if you hadn’t cleaned up your act and done what Google wanted you to do by Penguin 2.0, then you were slow on the uptake or your agency was poor. By Google Penguin 3.0 there should have been no issues whatsoever with links as this was 2 years after the initial update. That’s more than enough time to fix the issues and change your ways.

If you have seen drops over the rollout of Google Penguin 3.0 (it can take some time) then call us immediately! We see very little activity of poor spammy link building anymore and for the last 3 iterations of penguin, we have only seen increases and good results. If you have seen a negative response, then you need to get help and speak to an expert.

The Future

This doesn’t mean that spam links are a thing of the past. If you try and manipulate Google through the use of manufactured links, then I fully expect you to get penalised. I believe they will still be using the manual action penalty, but at the same time, it should be much quicker to fix this type of issue.

If you continue to conduct outreach and build links in a manner that is best for your client and its users, then you should encounter no issues.

 

We’re proud to announce that we’ve officially been named a ‘Google Premier Partner’. This comes on the back of months of hard work from our Paid Search team, headed up by our very own Google expert, Sherline Kumanan.

Google Premier Partner

What is a Google Premier Partner and what does it mean for you?

This accreditation, we’re told, recognises us for exemplary service for our clients. An agency can only achieve Google Premium Partner status when they have done the following:

  • Created and completed a Partner company profile to be listed on Google Partner search
  • At least 2 AdWords certified colleagues to show they have advanced AdWords knowledge (Knowledge capital)
  • Meet a higher spend requirement across managed accounts to demonstrate that the agency has a healthy amount of activity (High quality, large accounts)
  • Meet the performance requirement, by delivering solid overall AdWords revenue and growth, and maintaining and growing the customer base (Performance of the accounts and client retention rate)

Digital Next has met all of these criteria and is therefore accredited as a Google Premier Partner.

Google Premier Partner

Advantages of working with a Google Premium Partner

  • Total flexibility on your strategy
  • Direct line with Google
  • Only Google Certified Consultants will work on your campaigns and strategy
  • Access to special Betas

Head of Paid Search, Sherline Kumanan said:
“After working with many companies from a paid marketing perspective, I know how much your investment into digital marketing is vital. You need a digital agency you can trust and the Google Premier Partner network gives us access to be able to do just that for our clients”.

CEO of Digital Next, Justin Blackhurst added:
“As an official Google Premier Partner agency, we are recognised as a trusted business partner by Google. When you work with us, you’re working with digital marketers who have proven expertise and the ability to help your business succeed online”

Ultimately it means our Search and Web Development agency is healthy and delivering tangible results for our clients, through using the latest products, tools and knowledge.

Very few agencies within the UK have been awarded this prestigious accreditation and that makes us proud of our work and the teams here at Digital Next.

If you want to talk further about the accreditation and how we can help you leverage paid online methodology, get in touch with our head of sales Jade.

As mentioned in yesterday’s blog post, I’ve created a typical customer journey in order to demonstrate its complexities and erraticism. In this scenario, the customer’s buying decision is influenced by a variety of different factors; be it marketing, advertising, price, location, convenience, chance, etc.

But can you identify the points where the consumer’s buying decision changes? And, what the reasons are for changing them?

Micro-Moments Customer Journey

You’re sat at home watching football on Sky Sports and you see an advert in the background for the new FIFA 17 game and (naturally) you can’t help but wonder when the release date is. So you draw out your phone from your pocket and type ‘fifa 17 release date’ into Google before hitting enter. Within a mere 0.43 seconds, you’re presented with the date ‘September 27th, 2016’ within Google’s Knowledge Graph (I Want to Know Micro-Moment).

FIFA 17 release date

“Excellent!” you proclaim, because it’s less than a month away and you can beat your mates sooner than you thought! ‘I’ll click the paid search advert and pre-order it from Amazon with free UK delivery’ you think, but then you see an article headline in the Google News section stating that you can receive Bonus downloadable content when you preorder in-store at Game with a £10 deposit and you can benefit from attending their special midnight opening event.

At this point, you’re among the 82% of smartphone users that turn to their device to help them make a buying decision.

micro-moments

In that moment, you decide to visit your local Game store to take advantage of this offer. You know where it is but you don’t know how to drive there. So you take out your mobile and search ‘game stores manchester’, before finding that the closest store is at Manchester Fort Shopping Park as it’s shown in Google Local listings. Then you click directions to show you how to get there using Google Maps (I Want to Go Micro-Moment). Now you’ve arrived and parked up at Manchester Fort, you enter Game filled with the excitement of preordering FIFA and finding out what the Bonus content is. But when you look at the counter there’s a big queue, so you take some time to browse other products in the meantime.

micro-moments

In this moment, brands enable users to buy & reserve online before collecting the goods in-store ensuring that the consumers’ buying decision is facilitated by the merchant and business is retained.

Whilst browsing, you come across ‘Star Wars Battlefront’ for £20; a game that your mate has been mithering you to pick up since its release so you can both play together online. However, you still have reservations about the game, so you take out your phone and search for ‘star wars battlefront reviews’ before clicking ‘Video’ search on Google.

Star Wars Battlefront video review

In the results, you find a video review from trusted source, IGN, so put your headphones in, jump in the long queue at Game, then watching the review on YouTube (I Want to Do Micro-Moment) … Once watched, and taking into account that it’s been rated 8/10, you decide to purchase ‘Star Wars Battlefront’ from Game as well as ‘FIFA 17’.

With over 1 million YouTube channels with product reviews, where the audience for this type of content is bigger than ever with views growing 50% year on year.

However, while in the queue, you also see that there’s an ‘Ultimate Edition’ of FIFA 17 available for £59.99 with heaps more downloadable content than last year and you decide to stump up a little more for that edition instead. You’re close to the front of the queue now, when you get a text on your mobile from your mum – ‘I’ll message her back when I leave Game’ you think to yourself – but as you go to put your mobile away, you’re reminded of ‘Amazon’ because you see their app on your phone. So you decide to check the price for FIFA 17 Ultimate Edition on Google Shopping, where coincidentally Amazon have it listed at a lower price than Game with free UK delivery… “That’s a no-brainer.” Kevin Bacon says in your head because that EE advert has programmed you to think that line every time you spot a bargain, and you decide you’re going to buy it from Amazon instead (I Want to Buy Moment).

In this case, it would turn out that you’re just like 1 in 4 people that change their buying decision while in a checkout line after reading something on mobile.

In addition to this, while price checking FIFA you see that the ‘Star Wars Battlefront’ game is suggested to you based on your recent search history and listed at £5 cheaper from Amazon than it is at Game, as echoes of Kevin Bacon bounce around your head again… ‘Bit of a wasted journey really – wish I’d listened to the Go Compare guy’, you think to yourself before leaving the queue, just as the store assistant says “Next!” and looks right at you. But it’s too late, you’ve found the products to be cheaper elsewhere, and you’ve already decided to make the purchase online from Amazon instead of in-store at Game.

Amazon 1-0 Game. FT.

Ultimately, at the end of this journey, you’re situated among the 93% of consumers who use a mobile device for research go on to make a purchase.

Although fairly drawn out, the above journey signifies the complexity of the purchasing journey of a typical consumer, whilst also demonstrating how crucial the role of a mobile device is in facilitating the entire process. Moreover, Google’s vast range of products and services only serve to further complement the journey by making it faster, easier and informative. So whatever/wherever it is you want to; know, go, do, or buy; you can do it all in a Micro-Moment with Google.

In order to keep ranking well on Google, it is essential to develop a holistic SEO approach. Such an approach appreciates the need to focus on every part of your website. This includes technical SEO, website security, user experience and page speed optimisation. Include these in your overall SEO strategy and you will reap the benefits.

Make sure your website is built securely

Best practice SEO starts with the website. We have had many clients who have invested thousands into a website which lacks basic search engine optimisation capabilities, often built on a system which is ineffective and inferior to the likes of WordPress.

As well as the system, security is a big consideration that is surprisingly overlooked by many companies. Not only is it important to prevent hacking and to protect data, but it is valued highly by Google’s algorithm. Therefore, ensuring your website is secure provides immediate value to your SEO strategy.

Setting up a secure site means that you require HTTPS to allow for the transfer of encrypted data over the web. The user will notice the padlock icon within the browser, indicating the site is secure. It is still surprisingly common to see websites, that allow for credit card transactions, to not have an encrypted connection (this is not good). A secure website will ensure sensitive data is encrypted and, importantly for marketing, means your website will be seen in a more positive light by Google.

SEO strategy

Don’t forgot to optimise your page speed

Your website speed impacts everything. It directly has an effect on ranking, conversions and your bounce rate.

There is a myriad of ways to influence your site speed. Tools such as Google Page Speed Insights can give you an indication of how your website is performing.

SEO

There are many approaches you can take to speed up your site. Compressing and re-sizing images can save many bytes of data. This will allow for the images to load faster and more efficiently for the benefit of the user.

Installing a caching plugin may also be of use. This can be done via your hosting or via tools such as WP Super Cache for WordPress. Using a page cache will significantly decrease your load time, as static files from the website will be saved in the browser.  This means that returning users will not need to load the page from scratch.

However, the most important tip to note would be avoiding clutter on your website. Getting rid of unused images, drafts of content and unused pages will ensure your website can run as smoothly as possible. Optimising your page speed will dramatically improve your website’s performance for the user and advance its capabilities to rank well on search engines.

It is all about great user experience

Optimising websites is a multi-faceted discipline. Not only do you want to get visitors to your website, you want them to have a positive experience of your website. Or even ensure that visitor to trigger a call to action, such as subscribing to a newsletter.

SEO user experience

With website UX, everything needs to be considered to help guide the user and encourage them to perform a certain behaviour. For example, your call to action may need to be designed into a button. This button needs to be clear and recognisable, with a certain shape, colour and size to encourage users to click. In terms of design, you want the overall website design to be clean, intuitive and easy to use, leaving the user with a positive experience; a website they would happily visit again.

The way a potential customer behaves on your website can be monitored and analysed via tools such as Google Analytics. This will allow you to develop an understanding to how people move around your website, what the most popular pages are and what aspects you need to improve.

Don’t leave your technical SEO behind

Your website needs to be constantly under review to ensure on page and technical SEO signals are optimised to their full potential. You will be surprised how many websites miss out on basic SEO fundamentals.

technical SEO

Duplicate content is still an issue we see; content must be unique throughout the website to avoid being penalised by Google.

You also need to ensure your website is easy for the search engine to crawl. Making sure your title tags and meta descriptions contain your keyword allows the search engine to understand your webpage much more clearly. Best practice tips such as making sure your meta description is never longer than 160 characters, or making use of internal links in your blogs to lead users to further information on your website – ensuring these basics are complete will only go towards strengthening your website.

Ultimately SEO is more than just content and links. It requires holistic thinking across a whole range of different online techniques. In 2016, without this integrated way of thinking you will be left lagging behind your competition in a digital environment which is only getting more and more competitive.

The planning, organisation and execution of a marketing strategy is not always such a straightforward process. However, there are literally tons of creative marketing tips to explore in order to generate more business for your company, without blowing up your entire marketing strategy.

Marketing Tips

Well, in this blog we have combined a list of marketing tips and ideas full of strategies that we have previously executed for ourselves or our clients for you to take note from. The marketing campaigns have been used to generate inbound leads and are taken from past techniques implemented in-house here at Digital Next.

Winter is slowly approaching, which can only mean one thing… There are only 20 weeks left before the big man comes down your chimney! This is the BIGGEST season for both shoppers and retail stores, which makes it a critical time to up your marketing game and stand out against your competitors during the holidays.

E-Commerce

Ensure your marketing efforts are on the mark this winter, particularly paying attention to huge retail dates such as Black Friday.

A brand who did this well in 2015 was O2 who went all in claiming “no price is safe” on Black Friday. The brand sold devices such as the HTC One M9, Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy Tab S2 for as little as £1!

This could generate more traffic to your site just in time for Winter. The below marketing tips will help you optimise your online presence by focusing on the latest trends in online shopping.

Homepage Links

Homepage links may seem common knowledge to most, but it’s still a common omission from a lot of websites and it can be detrimental the overall experience of your customers.

It’s very important to ensure your homepage has links to product categories, and all deeper layers to your website. You should also be regularly creating content that caters to relevant keywords and is based around your products/services.

You should also ensure that each page has a unique page title that is 70 characters or less, and a meta description that’s 150 words or less; which basically outlines to Google what keyword you want the page to rank for.

Email Triggers

The dreaded three words: ‘out-of-stock’… We all fear seeing this when we’re trying to add products to our basket.

Instead of losing custom, add functionality by encouraging shoppers to submit their data. This can allow the user to be alerted when the items are back in stock.

If customers know they’ll eventually be able to get the item from you, it mitigates the possibility of losing them to the competition. You can also try suggesting similar items that are in stock to demonstrate that you’re business still remains able to understand and meet the needs of the customer.

Urban Outfitters automatically sends this email to users when they request to unsubscribe from their emails. The purpose of this automated email is a last-ditch effort to convince recipients not to unsubscribe. To appeal to their young adult target audience, this email creatively plays on the idea of a salvaging a relationship.

urban-outfitters-unsubscribe

This was an excellent method of engaging with their customers to show how valued they are to their business, and that they’re in touch with their target audience through means that they can relate to – on multiple levels.

Become A Google Trusted Store

Becoming a Google Trusted Store can help customers to recognise that you are both trusted and safe to shop with, but it’ll also help to increase the exposure of your brand.

Take the necessary steps to meet the correct requirements to do this; once you meet the criteria, you are given a badge that appears on Google Shopping.

This could also have a positive impact on your search rankings on Google in the future, as more and more alterations to the search listings become display oriented.

google-trusted-store-badge

Audits

Carrying out regular audits on your online store can help to identify places where you can improve the buyer journey.

Auditing your site can help to determine amends and changes to your current customer journey; starting with click through and bounce rates, to testing different landing pages in order to gauge with tweaks might improve results.

Items You Might Like

An ‘Items You Might Like’ section could encourage users to browse for longer on your website; adding photos or other relevant items to each product landing page could provide that item the customer may eventually choose to add to their basket.

Website Ideas:

When it comes to your website, there are tons of ways you are able to utilise, test and optimise your web pages to generate more, relevant traffic. Below are some tips to drive more online traffic to your business.

Pop-ups

Test pop-ups on your website with special offers; there’s so many different types of pop-ups you’re able to utilise on your online store. Some of my personal favourites are:

  • Multi Pop-Up – The website will launch multiple pop ups upon entering. Different techniques are used.
  • Come And Go – Pop-ups are launched upon entering and exiting.
  • Timed Pop-Up – Pop-ups are programmed to launch after a certain amount of time. Normally, 5 seconds.

Mobile

After the Mobile-geddon release in April 2015, Google made it clear anyone without a mobile optimised website would not reap the benefits of mobile optimised search in the future.

Google released a mobile-friendly test which means you’re able to ensure your website is Google-friendly.

Reviews

Consider starting a triggered email campaign that asks your past customers, who value your business, for online reviews.

This can work well in order to spark trust amongst your new audience, and is also a great way to enhance SEO. We advise Google Reviews and Trustpilot as great review tools.

dn reviews

A/B Test

A/B testing, a.k.a split testing, is comparing two versions of a web page or email campaign to see which one performs better.

The aim is to identify changes that increase the chance of what you want to happen, to happen!

CTAs

A big part of utilising your website is by ensuring you have the right CTAs (Call to actions) to help speed up and guide a user on its journey by providing them with targeted and relevant content by their stage in the buying cycle.

A great example of a website with compelling CTA’s is Evernote.

“Remember, Everything.”

The design on Evernote’s website makes it super simple for users to see quick benefits of using the app and how to actually sign up to use it.

Plus, the green color of the main and secondary CTA buttons is the same green as the headline and the Evernote logo, all of which jump off the page.

evernote-cta

Social Media Ideas:

You should already know the true value of using social media to expand your reach.

Keeping up with trends and constant changes within the social realm is incredibly important; it’s not enough to just follow the same old rules and tactics.

Below we have noted some tips and promotional tips for you to execute as part of your winter campaign.

Video Ads

We all read how video is the next BIG thing on everyone’s mind, and how it’s here to stay.

Once such benefit of video advertising, specifically on Facebook, is you don’t necessarily need to have a strong presence.

download (1)

Facebook Live

Facebook’s livestream is still a new concept which many brands aren’t utilising. Try using it, as Facebook’s algorithm ranks these higher than regular content!

live-android-screen

Social Influencers

Partnering with social media influencers, such as bloggers, celebrities and users with a excessive social media following can work wonders integrated into a social media campaign.

When it comes to making purchasing decisions, users look for endorsements on products from influencers and it’s great to generate that organic reach.

Targeted campaigns

There’s a wide range of different re-targeting campaigns that can leverage reach on your best performing offers and best selling products.

The tips we have given only scratch the surface of what ideas can be implemented as part of your seasonal campaigns.

If you’re looking for even more, in-depth marketing tips and ideas, take a look at our Digital Next blog.

Humanity has always valued convenience and ease in our day to day activates. In turn, technology is always being created to meet these needs. Google CEO Sundar Pichai recently announced that 20% of queries on the Google mobile app are voice searches. This is a large percentage, but in many ways it is not surprising as voice search applications continue to arise. Virtual assistance programmes such as Siri have encouraged a more conversational interaction between device and user.

Searching online is a tool we now take for granted, but why type when you can speak to your device?

Digital Personal Assistants

Using digital personal assistants is becoming second nature to many people. Becoming more and more integrated into every day products. For example, you can use Cortana on your laptop to add an event to your calendar, or you may have asked Siri on your iPhone to send a text to your friend. Those who consider themselves tech savvy may have made use of Amazon Echo to control their house lights or even add things to their shopping list.

As AI technology advances, it is starting to learn our behaviour when speaking to these devices. During voice search the user tends to ask a questions as though they are part of a conversation. Such voice queries often provide richer user intent, as the question is explicitly asked. The assumption from the user is that the search engine will be able to answer back accurately.

Voice input is the most likely reason there has been a rise in longer tail searches on search engines such as Google. With users often extending their question to entire phrases, rather than selecting key words via a keyboard. We speak differently to how we write. Using our natural language, we tend to be more specific and more phrase led. Therefore, in SEO terms we need to consider optimising pages for high value voice searches, as well as traditional written searches.

When we speak we are much likely to say “where is the nearest Indian restaurant”, as opposed to “Indian restaurants Manchester”. There is a change in discourse and search related queries. Questions are becoming based around words such as who, what, where and when.

Google is becoming frighteningly intelligent. Breaking down questions to understand the intent with increasingly good relevancy.

As voice searches rise, so does the wealth of new data from the user and their habits, which reinforces the knowledge it has already developed. Artificial intelligence technology is beginning to gain insight into user intent. Whilst utilising context signals – such as previous searches, past actions or behaviour and location. The self-learning technology is designed to anticipate your exact search needs.

voice search

At present, there is no way to tell who is reaching your site through the use of voice search, however such a feature is apparently being developed for Google Analytics. Currently we have no real way of tracking Voice Search, this means we are unable to understand its impact on conversation or how it impacts Search engine result pages. Once accurate data can be gleaned from Google Analytics, we can truly have insight into Voice Search and where the opportunities lie.

Voice search is certainly not full proof yet and still struggles to understand certain accents, dialects and abbreviations. However, by its very nature it is constantly learning, evolving to be more and more accurate for the user. It is only a matter of time.

How can we take advantage of Voice Search?

Voice search is being used more and more frequently, therefore as digital marketers we need to consider how to take advantage of this. Businesses that pay attention to the growing trends of voice search and converting customers via this route will have the upper hand as this search medium grows.

To drive voice search related traffic to your website – here are a few tips to consider:

  • Develop a conversational tone within your content to match natural language queries, ensuring the language on your website reflects how your customer would talk.
  • Consider what questions will be typically asked. Gain an understanding of your audiences queries and questions. Gather intelligence from your customer. Use an interview process to understand how they speak, how they ask and answer questions. Understand what phrases are being used in your industry to develop search strategies to match your customers tone and style.
  • Feature a Q and A section within your website, answering general questions that begin with the search terms – who, what, where & when.

Whilst voice search isn’t all there yet, it is bound to play a prominent role in the future of search. As wearable technology becomes more prevalent and more apps utilise voice, we will begin to see the integration of voice search into our everyday lives.