Today saw another epic Brighton SEO and in typical Kelvin Newman fashion it was the biggest one yet. In this round-up we’ve compiled our favourite tips from over 30 talks spread across nine separate sessions from the day.
As you may have already seen earlier today Koozai’s very own Tara West spoke at the conference with a look at AdWords tips for Local Businesses. You can find all of her slides via that link as well as a 3,500 word writeup of everything she covered.
Always test social with your own data – studies are irrelevant if you’re not using own data
For Twitter, use Buffer for scheduling at right time and use Follower Wonk data to find time when your followers are most active. Unified (used to be LageLever) gives you Facebook data on the most viewed and engaged posts. Simply Measured tool helps for Google+ posts engagement data.
It’s important to test timing of publishing blog posts for most engagement – Only ever adjust your schedule after testing.
Test which content types are working better than others and post more of these types. Try location tests. Always test and then test again!
Find your influencers with these tools – Google Ripples, True Social Metrics, Social Engage, Follower Wonk.
Facebook Insights can also be used to check unlikes, see who is no longer following your brand and determine why (too many posts etc.).
Grow locally – a one size fits all approach doesn’t work. Local knowledge is the key to success, including search habits and alternative search engine knowledge (for example, Yandex is Russia’s market leader).
But without centralisation, it can become messy. Have a wider overall strategy overlaying good local knowledge.
Don’t fall behind. English language algorithm changes come 6 months before international changes are rolled out.
Links from bordering countries, speaking different languages can be harmful and irrelevant.
Implement HREFLANG. It can work very well for counties with a smaller population.
China accounts for 14% of worldwide online sales, despite low broadband penetration and “the great firewall”. There are also government dictated forbidden keywords
Baidu is the market leader, outgrowing google more over time – but they dub SEOs as the enemy of search engines. By comparison, baidu is technically crude
For the Chinese market, optimise for speed first. The Chinese mobile browsing market is the largest and fastest growing.
Be aware of Chinese searching habits. Organic results tend to be exact match. Ads tend to be broad (based on simplified Chinese text).
Baidu has a spam problem. Their Penguin updates are called Money Plant. They have recently targeted article submission and linking directory sites, but they are still some 3 years behind Google’s tech.
Qihoo 360 could be the market leading search engine in China in the next few years, after knocking google off second spot
In Russia, Yandex has an extensive webmasters section. They help greatly with optimising sites for their search engine.
Yandex introduced matrixnet, a ranking system that changes for every product and keyword.
Sape.ru is the largest Russian linking directory.
In the USA, Blekko is emerging as a spam free alternative to Google that is entirely user focused, giving results based on content category.
Duck Duck Go uses around 50 sources and focuses on user privacy. Partnered with Yandex, it takes data from Wikipedia, Wolfram Alpha, Yahoo and more.
In Japan, Yahoo beats Google on page views
Ecommerce players, bet on China and Russia. Their markets are skyrocketing.
Investigate search culture. Work with local specialists. Use local hosting – just for optimised speed benefits.
Graeme Benge – Session 1, Track 3
How do you Trust people and pages you’ve never seen online? (Dixon Jones)
Prism has opened consumer’s eyes to how their data is not their own
Marketers are getting mugged based on our reliance on third parties
Notional value exists on influence – Twitter followers skews this, Klout reduces this.
This doesn’t just apply to people, pages too, even chrome extensions.
The problem is how do we measure and scale trust across multiple channels?
Majesticseo can measure trust metrics now for twitter URLs, extensions as well as standard web pages.
Take a goal driven strategy – The content you use needs to be the right type – Don’t create video for the sake of it. Use YouTube keyword tool to look at what is popular.
Lighting is the most important way to create a professional looking video. Good sound is also vital – Keep the microphone close to your face, not attached to the camera, as it picks up echo.
You cannot outsource the whole video process – You can outsource technical issues, but not your USP – Work closely with local freelancers if you can’t do projects in-house to avoid creating something generic and not branded.
Use transcriptions on videos to provide value to users.
Mark unpopular videos as unlisted instead of deleting them; so they’re not indexed but still count toward your overall views.
The Rules of ‘The Game’: 6 tips for successful outreach (Danny Ashton)
Asking for feedback when outreaching can open up opportunities and build trust for relationships.
Honesty can help build relationships – It’s better not to create personas when outreaching as they won’t last.
Dig deep into content to find affinities that are not just on a surface level. Outreach beyond the obvious topic links.
Overcome the fear of outreaching to bigger more authoritative sites – You never know what will happen if you take the right approach.
Be confident and try new techniques in outreach.
Actionable Content Marketing and Strategy (Tony Samios)
Identify your objectives by understanding your capabilities with past content and your competitors.
Define personality types to determine types of content – Create backgrounds of buyer personas, their motivations, habits and needs.
Map content to buying stages – Focus on key insights of customer and give them what they need.
Outline standards such as writing style, target key words, editorial standard and identify the workflow. Who will create? What will be created? Can it be repurposed?
Create content that people can be passionate about. User generated content works well for this. Listen and engage with audience to share this passion and show you are interested in their passions
Linkbuilding that “seemed like a good idea at the time” (Paul Madden)
Don’t take the easy option, take the quality option.
Look for article sites, directory sites and obvious paid links when you do clear up.
Link audit – Look at a site by how likely they are to be disavowed or marked as spammy.
Remove all bad links to avoid penalties.
We need to be auditing our links carefully according to Google’s standards, not just our own opinions on link sources.
Mobile is huge so be mobile friendly. Big brands are still getting this wrong.
Have a mobile friendly site, be it responsive, dynamic or mobile only on a subdomain. A responsive template is recommended for small businesses. No budget? Use Facebook and google+. Start saving up!
Local search optimisation – a much bigger factor in mobile search. Google+ places and profile pages should be in place and these can be merged. Name address and phone number (NAP) listings should be used
Social media. 4/5 Facebook users are accessing it via mobile. Be cool – Imagine yourself at a dinner party. Would you share the most boring things about your business?
Bypassing the search process: apps are not always needed but can serve returning users, like a loyalty app for coffee shops. Social media competitions can bypass search altogether. Email marketing – Make sure your emails are mobile optimised. More people use mobile devices to read email than to make phone calls.
Responsive design uses the same template and content, repurposed for a certain device type. Adaptive design uses an alternative template and design, bespoke to that device type.
40% of mobile searches are searches with intent. 50% of all online sales for mothers day this year came from mobile devices. £13 billion in online transactions expected in 2013 from eBay alone.
Mobile users have a lower tolerance to speed issues and irrelevant content. The user doesn’t care about the technology driving your site, they want the content. The user experience on mobile is key – such as ‘click to call’. See the NHS DIrect site as an example of a badly optimised user experience.
Establish the users intent and cut the clutter. imagine the circumstances that the mobile visitor will visit under. Optimise for the required outcome, eg a sale. Go for your most popular devices by visit using Google Analytics – test with the opera Mobile browser emulator.
Disable autocorrect! Add the right kind of keypad in the right place. Why put a qwerty keyboard for the credit card number field? Serve the user and be smart. Think like a consumer; a hat tip to Dave Trott.
You don’t need a website to appear In local search. Distance, relevance and prominence drive search. Local listing sites are not link building sites – local listing sites bolster local search information.
Use local listings to project your brand. Addresses are the bedrock as while businesses and phone numbers change, physical addresses always remain the same. Maintain these and consider the following:
the NAP anchor (Name address and phone number) – that combination is the unique identifier for your brand in local search and listings.
Brand and local works when people know the brand but not where to find it. If you don’t have a physical address, you can use PPC, buy an address, use a virtual address or work with ‘distributors’ (retailers etc). You can create separate listings at the same address using NAP – as long as combinations are unique and you have permission.
A survey found what people want from local search most. Phone numbers and address are the top 2. Links to click on are third. The best numbers for click to call are 07 and local numbers. 08 and 07 have very low click to call rates.
Effective AdWords Tactics for Local Businesses (Tara West)
Account structure. Have 2 campaigns for each product or service for locations nationwide and a generic geotargeted campaign. Don’t lose out to inaccurate ip address locations!
Bid on your brand. It’s cheap, gets a lot of traffic and converts well
Use modified broad match. Discover new keywords, boost impressions and improve quality score
Location bid adjustments. Google wants you to bid more for these, but what if you’re already performing well? Drill down to location level and judge your bids based on performance. Schedule bid adjustments should be used in the same way.
Mobile. Set bids at ad group level and adjust on the fly based on performance. -30% is a good place to start.
Does the weather affect your business? Use weather bid adjustments with Adwords and free weather API. For example, bid up on raincoats or garden furniture ads for rainy or sunny days.
Bespoke landing pages are awesome. conversion rates and quality score can go through the roof.
Block ip addresses. You can block competitors IPs by Whois lookup or checking Their email headers – these can reveal the senders ip.
Non profits get up to $10,000 free Adwords credits!
Review extensions, image extensions and call extensions can be great for local businesses. Schedule call extensions to your office hours to save ad spend while you’re out of the office. You can add special offers as an extension too. Improve CTR and quality score.
Don’t obsess with last click: not all visits are equal, not all visit once,not all convert once.
How do you track a visitors subsequent purchase via offline channels?
How do we track across device?
We can: use user segmentation this segment visitor so looks at data across multiple user sessions (visits) this way you can understand what customers are most valuable
Universal Analytics: this promises to sync offline and online data. It will also allow custom dimensions and metrics. In the future it may also track cross device data as long as the user is logged in to your site.
Attribution: using multi channel funnels looks beyond the last click to purchase journeys. This allows analysis of channels that contributed to a goal completion.
Remarketing the ones that got away via Ga: create lists to target cart abandonment to target again. Focus moves to site visitors rather than the unknown.
The cost of acquiring customers is increasing. SEO and PPC costs are rising. The Internet is becoming closed
Claude Hopkins, an advertising revolutionary, said that direct mail was then” severest test” of a marketer. Free, no obligation trials were one of the ideas he pioneered
Market to the undecided. Give them all the information they need to decide.
Try buying the product or service yourself to find user experience issues – the best marketers are often in sales as they understand the end user and their complaints better
Whichtestwon.com is great for comparing button placement and layout. Test responsive designs and exploit every pixel by optimising for different screen resolutions
More Offline Leads from Online Traffic (Ali White)
use dynamic phone numbers – track visitors by the calls they make. Make sure follow up calls happen.
Optimise for REVENUE, not conversions.
Answer the phone. On average, 9% of calls go unanswered. Don’t assume callers will leave a voicemail or that they will call back. Don’t assume that ecommerce sites don’t apply to this – 83% of users seek assistance during a purchase, most by phone.
How do you manage your leads? Make sure you get as much information as possible and don’t put the lead off. Think about retargeting: including location info or phone numbers can increase ctr by 6-8%
IP lookup and mobile responsive phone numbers can optimise for devices and locations.
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Unlike 08 numbers, 03 numbers cost the same to call as geographic landline numbers (starting 01 and 02), even from a mobile phone. They are also normally included in your inclusive call minutes. Please note we may record some calls.