Why SEO and Searching is important

When someone starts a search, they are starting a journey. Digital Marketers love to talk about something named “the consumer journey”, which is a fancy word of referencing a user’s direction from inception of their task to the end – and these journeys start with a simple search.

What is a long tail keyword?

There is a new SEO sheriff in town and it’s name is Long tail keyword. What are these? These are longer and more specific keyword phrases that a visitor is more likely to use when they’re closer to buying or when they’re using voice search.

Why video testimonials boost your SEO

Some will tell you that the key to success is hard work, but if you don’t have anyone vouching for the hard work you put in then you’ll find yourself going round and round when it comes to proving your values to prospective customers.

What is a cornerstone article

Making your website easy to navigate can be the difference between keeping visitors or losing them to your competitor’s site. A cornerstone content is a important factor in keeping traffic within your site and improving your user experience.

A Beginners Guide on Keyword Research

beginners_guide_Keywords_research

Google is constantly keeping us on our toes with all their algorithm updates, but one thing that has stayed pretty consistent for marketers looking to optimise their websites for the search engines is keyword research.

Well, the need to do keyword research has stayed the same. How you actually do it hasn’t.

What is keyword research?

Keyword research is when online users use keywords to find and research search terms that users enter into search engines. The knowledge about these specific search terms can help inform content strategy, and marketing strategy.

Below is a keyword research process you can follow to help you come up with a list of words you should be targeting.

This way, you will be able to establish a strong keyword strategy that helps you get found for the search terms you actually care about.

How do you research for keywords to suit you’re SEO strategy?

Step 1: Start by making a list of important and relevant topics based on what you know about your business.

Think about the topics you want to rank for. You can come up with about 5-10 topic keywords that you think are important for your business, and then you will use these topics to come up with some more targeted keywords later.

If you blog regularly then these are the keywords you blog about most often, or they could be the topics that come up the most in you sale conversations. Basically put yourself in the shoes of your buyer, what type of topics would your buyer or target audience search for to get your business found? If you were a company like us, for example keywords such as “graphic design” or “logo design” – you also might have general topics like “web design” or “SEO.

Step 2: Fill in those topics with keywords.

Now that you have a few topics you want to focus on, the next step is to identify some keywords that fall into those topics. These are keywords you think are important to rank for in the search engine results pages because your target audience is probably looking for those same terms.

For example, if we took that last topic for an graphic design agency – “graphic design” – I would brainstorm some keyword phrases that I think my customers would type in related to that topic. They might include:

  • graphic design adelaide (location helps)
  • logo design adelaide
  • looking for graphic design
  • need branding for my new business
  • web designers in adelaide
  • email marketing
  • SEO experts

And so on and so on. The point of this exercise isn’t to come up with your final list of phrases – you just want to end up with a brain dump of phrases you think potential customers might use to search for content related to that particular topic.

Although more keywords are getting encrypted by Google each and every day, another intelligent way to come up with keywords is to find out which keywords your website is currently getting found for. To find this out you will need a website analytic like Google Analytics. Look into your website’s traffic sources, and search through you organic search traffic topics to identify the keywords user are using to arrive at your site.

Step 3: Research related search terms.

If you’re finding it difficult to think of more keywords people might be searching for about a specific topic, go to Google.com and take a look at their related search terms that appear when you type in a keyword. When you type in your words and scroll to the bottom of Google’s results, you will notice some suggestions for searches related to your original input. These keywords can trigger ideas for other keywords you may want to take into consideration.

key-related-searches

Step 4: Check for a combination of long-tail keywords and head terms.

Head terms are keywords phrases that are usually shorter and much more generic, they are typically just one to three words in length. Long-tail keywords are longer keyword phrases usually containing four or more words.

It’s important to check that you have a combination of long-tail terms and head terms because it’ll provide you with a keyword strategy that is well planned with long-term goals and short-term wins. This is because head terms are generally searched more frequently, making them often more competitive and harder to rank for than long-tail ones. Let’s take the following for example. Which of the following terms do you think would be more difficult to rank for?

  1. I need to find a graphic designer in Adelaide
  2. graphic design Adelaide

If you answered number 2, you’re right. But while head terms generally boost the most search volumes, the traffic you’ll get from the term “I need to find a graphic designer in Adelaide” is usually more enticing.

But Why?

Because if a user is looking for something that specific then they are probably a much more qualified searcher for your services than someone looking for something just generic. And because long-tail keywords tend to be more specific, it’s easier to tell what people who search for those keywords are really looking for. Someone searching for the head term “graphic design Adelaide,” on the other hand, could be searching it for a whole lot of other unrelated products or services than just your business.

Check your keyword lists to ensure you have a good mix of long-tail keywords and head terms.  You definitely want some long-tail keywords, but you should also try to look at more difficult head terms over the long haul.

Step 5: How are your competitors ranking for the same keywords.

Just because a keyword is important to your competitor, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s important to yours. But, understanding what keywords your competitors are trying to rank for is a good way to help you give your list of keywords another look.

If your competitor is ranking for similar keywords that are on your list, it definitely makes sense to work on improving your ranking for the same words. However, don’t ignore the words your competitors don’t seem to use much or don’t have. This could be a great way for you to own those important terms.

The ultimate goal is to end up with a list of keywords that provide some wins, but also help you make progress toward a bigger and more challenging SEO goal.

A great and free tool to use to see what keywords your competitors are ranking for is SEMrush, it allows you to run a number of free reports that show you the top keywords for the domain you enter.

Step 6: Use Google’s AdWords Keyword Planner to edit down your list.

So you have the right bag of  keywords, it’s time to narrow down your lists with some more data. You have a lot of free tools at your disposal, but let me share our favourites.

We use Google AdWords Keyword Planner (you will need to set up an AdWords account for this though, but this does mean you have to create an ad) and Google Trends.

Use Google Keyword Planner to avoid any terms on your list that have way too little, or way too much, and don’t help you maintain a good mix like we talked about earlier. But before you do delete anything, just check out their trend history and projections using Google Trends. You can see whether some low-volume terms might actually be something you should consider.

Or perhaps you are just searching for a list of terms that is way too massive, and you have to narrow it down. Google Trends can help you determine which terms are trending upward, which are worth more of your focus.

Once all these steps have been done you are finished, and on your way to having a better SEO plan. Good luck!

Choosing the right SEO Keywords

choosing-right-keywords

Ranking in the search engines is a complex process, so choosing the right SEO keywords is important, but if you’re not a SEO expert where do you start?

You start by doing a keyword research first and getting inside the heads of your customers, by knowing exactly what words they use when searching. How do you choose which keywords to optimise for? Should you focus on long tail keywords, or go straight for the most competitive head terms?

 

Check your competition

Whether you target long tail keywords that are specific and consist of multiple key words, or you target after head terms depends on your competition. If the competition in your business is high, then you will have a hard time ranking on competitive head terms. If you have little competition, you’ll even be able to rank for head terms. 

Most people are not very good in assessing their chances to rank highly, they usually overestimate their chances, and focus on head terms that don’t attract to much traffic.

The question is how do you determine your competition? What should you be looking for? There are two ways to do this:

  • Google and study your competition
  • Try, evaluate and then try again

Google and study your competition

Start off by Googling the keywords that came out of your keyword research. Start with the most ‘head’ term keyword, then cross reference the search engine result page. These are the sites you will be competing with once you optimise your content for the same keywords. To check whether or not you’ll be able to compete with these websites analyse the following points:

  • Are the websites professional looking? Ask yourself whether or not you’re business is an equal to these businesses. Does your website belong with these sites? Is your business a similar size, and does it have as much influence in your industry?
  • Does the search engine result page display well-known brands? It’s going to be much harder to rank when you are competing against strong brand-names websites.
  • What is the content of these websites? Is the content professionally written and well optimised? How long and rich in content are the articles? If your competition has poor content, you have a better chance to outrank them (remember content is king!)
  • Are there any Google ads ? And how much is the pay-per-click in Google Adwords? Search terms that have a high pay-per-click are usually also harder to rank for in the organic results.

It all comes down to one question: how does your website hold up, compared to the websites in the search engine result pages? If your’e business is of equal size then go ahead and focus on those head terms, but if not perhaps try a more long tail keyword.

The next stage is to do the exact same analysis as you did above with a keyword that’s slightly more long tail. Longer and more specific search terms are going to generate much less traffic, but ranking on these terms is going to be much easier. Focusing on a whole bunch of long tail keywords can generate a lot of traffic. Once you have managed to rank for those long tail keywords, and aiming for more head terms is going to be easier.

Try, evaluate and then try again

When you have completed a thorough analysis of your chances to rank on a specific term, you then are going to write rich and appropriate content and optimise it correctly.  Don’t forget to include some backlinks. Then wait. Then check out your rankings. Does your content pop up in Google? Does it hit the first page of Google’s search engine pages? Or is it hidden on page 2 or 3? Just make you evaluate your articles in the search engine result pages. Google the keywords you’ve optimised your content to. Then check whether or not your SEO is working!

If you’re not able to rank on the first page, then try to write a different article, but focus it on a even more long tail keyword. Try making it a little more specific, then see how that displays. Evaluate it again. You should be constantly doing this process until you hit the first page.

In summary

Choosing the right SEO Keywords to get the most traffic to your website can be rather intimidating.  Just be persistent because it will definitely pay off! After you have thoroughly analysed your competition start testing. Write articles and see how they rank. After evaluating your rankings, adapt a strategy, you will get there if you just keep on trying.

Benefits of having a Blog page?

benfits-of-having-a-blog

We are often asked by our clients whether having a blog on their site is really a necessary.

As a business owner ourselves we have built a successful business in large part thanks to our blogs and content. I’ve seen firsthand the difference it makes in terms of Google ranking. We are a huge advocate of investing heavily in a content strategy, and that strategy begins with your company blog.

Below are some major reasons why having a blog is critical to a successful site:

1. Drives traffic to your website:

First, and most important a blog gives you the opportunity to create relevant content for your customers. Use this as a marketing tactic to drive traffic to your website.

Your business might be on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or anywhere else. Posting links  – with relevant images – of your blogs article to your social sites, gives your social followers a reason to click through to your website.

Additionally, post inbound links directly in your blog articles, to drive traffic to specific landing pages of your website.

Think about how many pages there are on your website? Probably not too many. And think about how often you update those pages? Not that often, right?. Clients always ask me how are they meant to update their website once it’s already established and built. I mean how often can you really update your About Us page.

Blogging helps solve this problem.

Every time you write a blog, it’s one more indexed page on your website, which means it’s one more opportunity for you to show up in search engines and drive traffic to your website. It’s also one more way to reach out to Google and other search engines that your website is active, which means they will be checking in frequently to see what new content appears.

Blogging also helps you get discovered via social media. Every time you write a blog, you’re creating content that users can share on social networks, which help expose your business to a new audience.

blogging-drives traffic

 

2. Increases your SEO

Blogs do increase your SEO. Remember Google’s saying ‘Content is King’ and fresh content is still a key to beating your competitors in the search engine results page.

Always use keywords in your blogs. List out the keywords, tags, and categories you want your business to be found with. Use these words, and related words when writing your posts.

Whether you actively seek these out or not, blogging usually about your business will increase your search keywords.

Keywords and topics on your website are a helpful way in which Google find your site for these search related keywords.

3. Positions your brand as a industry leader

A well written blog demonstrates your company as the industry leader. By writing blogs that resonate with your market shows your knowledge, and your’e marketing skills for your business also. Your customers will benefit from learning what you provide them.

For example if you are a retailer you would write blogs about your products. Your customers would then get to know you as a knowledgelable source for the products they want.

You are also building trust with your customer. The more you can show them that you are experienced in your field, the more your consumer will trust your’e product.

The best websites answer common questions their customers have. If you’re creating content that’s helpful for your target market, it will help establish you as an authority in their eyes.

Establishing authority is not as sell-able as traffic and leads, but it’s powerful anyway, because at the end of the day, that’s what many of your blogs are.

In summary:

You can see by reading the above that the benefits of having a blog is very useful for anyone who wants to know an answer to a question. These days Google’s algorythym is becoming more and more about helpful information. You would have already see it taking action, if you type in a question in Google’s search engine you receive a bunch of links that answer those questions, so this is why blogging in very important, because ultimately it boosts your SEO.

Hello world!

Welcome to our blogs. Have a read through and let us know what you think.

What is UI Design?

What-is-UI-Design

What is UI (user interface) Design? is difficult to answer because of its large variety of misinterpretations. While User Experience is a mishmash of tasks focused on optimisation of a product for effective and enjoyable use; User Interface Design is its compliment, i.e. the look and feel, or the presentation and interactivity of the product. But it is easily and often confused by the industries that use UI Designers. To some extent that different job roles will often refer to the profession as something completely different (i.e.UX).

You will find perception of the profession that is alike to graphic design. Sometimes spreading to branding, and even front end web development as well.

If you look at an expert explanation of User Interface Design, you will mostly find descriptions that are in part the same to User Experience. Even mirroring the same structural techniques.

So what is the right answer? The conflicting answer is: Neither of them.

But both are close in minor ways. Like User Experience Design, User Interface Design is a all-round and challenging role. It is responsible for the transportation of a product’s research, development, content and layout into an appealing, guiding and responsive experience for a user. It is also a field that dissimilar to UX, is a strictly digital profession, as per how the dictionary defines it (as per below):

user interface
noun Computing
the means by which the user and a computer system interact, in particular the use of input devices and software.

Whether you choose UX design or UI design, it is important to understand how the other one works, and how to work with both of them.

Below are some of a UI designer’s key responsibilities:

Look and Feel:

  • Customer Analysis
  • Branding and Graphic Design
  • Design Research
  • Branding and Graphic Design
  • User Guides/Storyline

Interactivity and Responsiveness:

  • Interactivity and Animation
  • Implementation with Developer
  • UI Prototyping
  • Adaptation to All Device Screen Sizes

As a interactive and visual designer, the UI role is important to any digital interface and for customers a key element to trusting a brand. While the brand is never the responsibility of the UI designer, its translation to the product is.

A responsibility for “implementation” of the design with a developer is generally how UI have worked in the past, you should be aware that the lines are dim, as the term “Web Designer” (in short is a UI designer who can code) is being replaced by expertise of User Interface Designers. While UX has no need for coding, UI is a role that as time will  progress, will rely on it as part of building interactive interfaces.

Google Sends Warnings for HTTP Sites

If you’re website is using HTTP at the start of the domain name you may get a warning notice from Google, they already have begun sending out warning notices to owners that their website will be flagged as a “non secure” in Google Chrome starting in October 2017.  Their first step in the plan is to display a “Not secure” label in the address bar.

So what does this mean for you?  If your website uses a form which includes things such as a comment form, Google can show the website as not being secure if you use the Google Chrome browser.  Google will also show this warning for ALL your pages when viewed in the Incognito mode.  If your website has no forms but is the sort of site that your users might prefer to visit via Incognito, then that website will be shown as not secure.

The is all set to take place in the beginning of October 2017, with the version 63 of Google Chrome, so you still have a month or so  to implement HTTPS for your site.

Some websites will receive these notices even if they are using HTTPS,  and this is because some owners use both the HTTP and HTTPS versions of the site verified in Google Search Console.  Even if the HTTP version is correctly re-directing to the HTTPS, Google still will send a warning notice.

This is what the notice looks like:

google-HTTP-warning-notice

Google Chrome’s long-term plan to mark sites with HTTP as insecure, also with the free Let’s Encrypt initiative is helping close the gap on the web’s remaining unencrypted sites.