Is Your Online Presence Failing to Sell?: Here Are 4 Reasons Why

There is an old saying in that ‘you can bring the horse to water but you cannot make them drink’ and never has one been so accurate when talking about web traffic…

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From an SEO or Social Media point of view, getting traffic to a site is the first big goal, but it has to be the right sort of traffic and then the site must do its job and get them to engage, taking a ‘sip’ if not a big gulp.

The Engagement Process

A part of this ‘engagement process’ is of course down to design, it has to appeal (very quickly) to the browser, or risk loosing them in those vital first seconds.

The next thing of course is the content of the page. Is it what the customer wants?, your Bounce Rates will tell you (and Google too if they come from a search) so need to be constantly rewiewed, just in case you are not doing things the way that your customers want, these after all being the final arbiter…

The site’s content and the way it approaches it’s customers is therefore key. It does not matter how many potential customers (horses) you deliver to a site if the ‘water’ does not look good and tasty.

Getting on the Customers Shortlist

But what is ‘tasty?’ A very good question and one that will change depending on what the site is about and where in the buying cycle your customer is. The article below covers this in one of it’s points saying in effect that those who are just starting in their quest are looking for very general data and thus don’t want the full nine words on your product / service, but just an initial description. If you get on their shortllist they will be back..

Besides the issue of good ‘useful’ content, there is the matter of Re-Engagement. This is another topic and one that we will come back too in the future, but it is important as just because the visitor does not buy today, does not mean that they might not buy tomorrow, so keeping in contact and reminding them that you are there waiting to serve them, is a good idea.

For the full article on Why your site is not converting, please click the link.

The cheese moved. The buying process has changed. Technology to support and further that change continues to grow and evolve. Communicating through the vast array of digital channels (website, SEM, social, email) is no longer an option. It is a must-do.

The online presence of your business must attract and convert prospects. It must engage with leads through a variety of channels as users travel through a longer and more complex buying cycle.

How we market and communicate online has come a long way from static, brochure-like internet pages and “spray-and-pray” email blasts. Unfortunately, for many, online marketing is still failing to reach its full potential.

Pointing a finger at the underlying technology would be easy, e.g., marketing automation, content management systems or any of the tools and solutions laid out in Scott Brinker’s Marketing Technology Super Graphic.

It’s easy to say the technology is failing, so the marketing effort is failing. But the reality is more complex. Here are four of the biggest reasons why your online presence is failing to drive sales.

Engagement For The Wrong Reasons

Using engagement tactics that are not aligned with business goals is a huge waste of time and money. Too often, I see engagement for engagement’s sake. This results in leads stagnated in the buying cycle and low-volume sales funnels.

Having a high number of Twitter followers or a successful content syndication program is great, but that is not success.

CMOs are being judged on sales. And following your brand or downloading an asset is not a sale.

Social followers matter. They are your advocates. They can extend your message.

But focusing on the number of followers and not their engagement and conversion ratios results in negative ROI for the money spent to generate them. It also takes the marketing eye off the important goal of a sale.

Weak Commitment To Prospects

Generating new leads through content syndication or SEM is the start of the buyer’s journey. Most leads are not ready to buy at that point.

So not using retargeting or nurture programs to bring them back for further communication is a waste of the money spent to find them to begin with.

When they fail to travel along the pipeline because they are left to rot somewhere between the marketing and sales organization, it reflects negatively on the organization.

Lack Of Good Content

Everywhere I look, the numbers show an increase in content marketing spend and usage. Businesses are spending millions to have content developed — to tell their story, engage with their prospects, and help convert their leads through the buying cycle.

And yet much of what is used to attract and engage leads is sales enablement content. It’s all about features and functions. Or it’s focused on selling something, rather than trying to educate.

Take, for example, the content used in top-of-funnel nurture programs. More times than I care to remember, I’ve seen programs use 45-minute product webinars or 20-page product briefs.

Breakdown happens when leads don’t engage, and the prospects in the funnel dry up. This is because leads in the early buying cycle don’t want to know everything about the product, and they don’t want to be sold to. Rather, they want to know what the options are and what to consider as they do their research.

Marketing Teams Are Not Living In The Now

Stagnating means not going to where your customers are by using better ways and different channels to communicate with them online. It results in low communication. And poor communication results in low sales.

Searches And Mobiles, What’s The Plan?

Google’s new algorithm is aimed at sifting through mobile searches. These days most people use their mobile phones to perform searches on the internet. If your site is not optimised for mobile, you will not rank so it is important to make sure that your website is accessible on any device. What this means is that searches performed on mobiles are going to be provided primarily with a list of sites that are mobile friendly. Recent research has shown that there is a high number of high profile sites that are not compatible with mobile devices.

The average person will not notice the changes but for those companies who have not been able to get themselves sorted, they will be affected by these changes and will find themselves either sliding down the rankings or not appearing at all. The number of searches on computers has decreased significantly so it really does make perfect sense to make life easier for visitors to your site who are using mobiles.

There is another reason for these changes taking place, the behaviour of people. Those who perform a search for a particular product on their Smartphone are more likely to be wanting to make a purchase. Often, mobile searches are not looking to research the products rather, they have often done this beforehand on their PCs so are ready to buy.

With the numbers of mobile searches, making your website mobile-friendly is in fact more important than performing SEO. The whole point of the new algorithm is to ensure that the right search results are provided regardless of the device being used. The easier the access, the more likely it is that a purchase will be made there and then. So, if the visitor can make their purchase quickly and easily, it will affect businesses who have failed to adapt.

It is important to keep up with all the changes that are taking place so that you are not concentrating on doing things that are perhaps not quite as relevant as they once were. For instance, where unique high content was the key to attracting search engine attention, there is a bit of a shift towards compatibility and how user friendly the site is. This does not however, mean that you can forget about providing quality content, this is still an very important aspect of SEO but you need to balance the user’s experience as well. Having a content rich website is still a main goal but do make sure that your site is accessible on a variety of devices so that you do not miss out on all that potential business being done via mobile devices.

 

Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales once reportedly said: “If it isn’t on Google, it doesn’t exist”.

While statements like this may be best left on the sun-blessed coffee shop terraces of Silicon Valley, as far as brand and business awareness is concerned, it isn’t far wrong.

The numbers are staggering. Google currently accounts for 88 % of the UK’s search engine market. It processes an average of over 40,000 global search queries every second, 3.5bn searches per day and 1.2tn searches per year worldwide.

On the web, sole traders can in theory compete with the corporate big boys, so being able to be found – and found easily – among those searches is essential for any firm. It’s this desire to be higher up the Google rankings that has led to the explosion of the search engine optimisation (SEO) industry.
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Successive Google algorithm updates have seen the nature of SEO change radically. Where once processes such as keyword stuffing – cramming words that are popular in Google searches into your website’s copy, whether they make sense or not – may have worked, now they can actually work against you.

These algorithm updates, such as the exotically named Panda and Penguin, mean that now – as Bill Gates once famously said – “content is king”.

Meaningful content that operates as part of a wider digital marketing strategy, with the likes of social media and blogging all playing a part, is now key. The ability to view your site on smartphones is also gaining importance at an exponential rate.

But because of the rapid speed of change, there’s a feeling among experts that some small businesses are still getting it wrong.

“There seems to be a belief that if we cram keywords into content then this will push those all important rankings up,” says Sarah Duffy, MD of creative marketing agency Red Hen Creative.

When we approached Google, they said they don’t comment on SEO, and much of what’s under the bonnet is still the subject of supposition from the outside world.
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One thing’s for sure though, Google is getting smarter. It’s now much harder to take shortcuts or to pull the wool over its eyes and cheat your way to the top – you have to earn your place.

But lack of time and writing expertise can prove hefty roadblocks for firms looking to evolve their content. A lack of patience too (SEO can take months to start showing any real impact) is also a problem.

Phil Morgan, head of search at advertising agency Delineo, says: “SEO results are only keenly felt long-term, and therefore it can be difficult for small business owners to see the value in taking time out of their day to write about their industry.”

He adds: “The online audience has evolved and expectations are high. They are mobile, they are time poor and they live in a world where sharing ideas and content on social networks is just a natural part of consuming online content.”

Cheshire-based wedding photographer Christopher Ian has seen first hand how much Google has changed.

“Google is my primary source of enquiries so it is of vital importance. When I first started my wedding photography website in 2011, I found that ranking well depended largely on key wording specific phrases,” he says. “I’d just put in a list of locations or photography styles, listed one after the other in a robotic style. But now Google will look for these words and phrases in the form of structured and real-world paragraphs that actually make sense, it is more human.”

So what options do businesses have if they want to get their SEO in order? Firstly, when it comes to creating content, it’s impossible to overstate the importance of being earnest – create content that’s enjoyable to read and genuinely relevant to your customers.
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Duffy says: “Don’t stuff content with keywords – it’s just awful to read. Yes, you’ll probably boost rankings for a short time, until Google blacklists you, and in the interim once you do get a potential customer on your site, they’ll click off within seconds. People buy from people – be natural, be engaging, be human.”

Another tick in the plus column when Google is ranking you is if reputable websites link to you, and if people are talking about you online.

Leon Brown, founder of Nextpoint, which sells education services and content, says: “I use social media to engage in conversation with people, it’s also useful for opening opportunities.

“You can use it to refer people to your content as part of the conversations and find people who can share your content, such as retweeting on Twitter.”

Faced with a real lack of understanding about this rapidly changing industry, SEO experts and agencies are still highly sought after.

Alex Fenton, lecturer in digital business at Salford Business School, runs courses at MediaCityUK. He says: “A lot of SMEs come on our courses and quite often they will have had some kind of bad experience, either being ripped off by someone taking their money and not delivering results, or some kind of search engine penalty.”

Paul Delaney, head of natural search at Vizeum Manchester, adds: “To ensure no opportunities are missed, having the right team members focus on SEO and essentially learn through training will really help get the business on the right track.”
Five ways to improve your SEO

Create great content. Google’s reputation depends on it leading users to high quality sites, so the better and more original your content is, the more Google will like you.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2015/jul/27/master-seo-google-rankings-search

How To Plan An SEO Strategy That Will Work

SEO is the process of ranking your website on the search engines. It is important to develop an SEO strategy that will suit both your website and your business. It is actually very important to know what position your website holds and what to do to improve it.

There is no magic wand for SEO, there is no exact formula to follow, it is one of those things that if you try to grab it, it disappears. It does pay to be cautious with whatever optimisation techniques you decide to use. Any mistakes will result in penalties so you do need to be sure that what you do is legitimate and is within the rules.

So, planning an SEO strategy means that you need to know what your product is and who your target audience is. This is actually the first step, understanding what you sell and who you sell it to. This will give you the understanding that you need to begin formulating your strategy. You need to identify areas where your website is not performing so well on the search engines.

Keywords: Find out whether your target keywords are spread equally around your site. Keywords are still one of the main sources used to rank your site on the search engines.

Content: Content is more important than ever and it has to be unique, well written and contain a good density of keywords and key phrases that appear in a natural fashion.

Image Optimization: make sure that keywords are showing in the ALT Tags.

Google Analytics: Run Google analytics regularly so that you can see what is going on and where you can make improvements.

Index Status: It is vital that your site is crawled and indexed, if it is not, you will never rank on the search engines.

Check Backlinks: Find out how many back links your site has and make sure that they are to other high quality sites that are relevant to your website. Use Google’s disavow tool to remove unsuitable backlinks.
Social media status: Check your website’s social media status. It is important for businesses these days to engage with their followers so make sure you update these accounts regularly.

By checking all these points, you will be in a better place for developing your SEO strategy. Your business can have a prominent online profile which in turn lead to higher profits. Having a carefully planned and executed online marketing strategy will go a long way to achieving this.

 

Millions of blog posts are being written every day for various blogs across the web. One of the obvious facts that new bloggers learn quickly is that not all blogs and blog posts get equal attention. On a particular blog, some blog posts get more attention than others. There are some blog posts on this blog that always get more traffic than others. There are also some blogs that get more traffic than other ones. Out of all of the blogs I have, this one is by far the most successful.

The amount of traffic your blog gets is dependent on social media and SEO. Social media covers the sharing aspect and growing an audience on the networks you use. However, SEO is a much deeper concept that a select few understand. To everyone else, it looks like the extensive math problem that takes up the entire chalkboard.

Understanding SEO is important because it is a big avenue for traffic. Some people get thousands of daily visitors from SEO which means it is valuable. Although SEO is not exactly the do or die stage of a blog, it is important, and here are 11 mistakes you need to avoid so your blog can have better SEO.

#1: Not submitting your blog’s sitemap to Google.

One of the reasons why blog posts do not get SEO traffic is because they are not even indexed by Google. A sitemap presents all of the contents of your blog in a way that makes it easier for Google to read them. Submitting your blog’s sitemap to Google will allow them to properly index your blog posts. Indexing your blog posts on Google makes it possible for anyone to find any one of your blog posts with a particular search phrase.

There are many options for creating your own sitemap, but out of all of the options, the Google XML Sitemaps WP plugin is the easiest to use. This plugin makes it easy to create an XML sitemap to submit to Google so all of your blog posts can be properly indexed. Once you get your sitemap, head over to Google Webmaster Tools and submit your sitemap.

#2: Not knowing the difference between http and https

Actually, there is no difference, and that’s the problem. Search engines see http://www.example.com and https://www.example.com as two different websites with identical content. This is duplicate content that search engines associate with plagiarism. As a result, your SEO ranking will go down for both the http and https versions of your website.

In order for you to identify whether your blog has this problem or not, simply enter http:// before your blog’s URL. Then, do the same thing but with https:// in the front. When you do this, check your URL for spelling because you do not want a misspelled URL to give you the wrong webpage.

Your SEO is doing just fine if one of the two options worked. If both options work, then your blog’s SEO is getting hurt. For a WordPress blog, you can change your blog’s URL by going into settings–>general. Then, you can change your blog’s URL to your preference so people can either use http or https to access your blog. Visitors should not be able to use both http and https to access your blog.

#3: Not having meta tags for your blog posts

Search engines have a big responsibility in organizing billions of blog posts based on popularity, keywords, and value. Although search engines have this big responsibility, they struggle to understand a majority of blog posts. The reason why some valuable blog posts are not getting any search engine traffic is because they do not have meta tags.

I got introduced to meta tags more than a year and a half after I created this blog. I had to go through every blog post I ever wrote and add meta tags to them all. It was painstaking work that took several months of my time, but it was all worth it. My search engine traffic jumped up significantly after making the change. Any of my blog posts that were already doing good traffic from the search engines got a big jump in traffic.

I use the Add Meta Tags WP Plugin to add meta tags to all of my blog posts. I include keywords in these meta tags so search engines can pick up on them and promote my content. Meta tags, especially the meta tags with the right keywords, make it easier for the search engines to understand what your content is.

#4: Not understanding how Google sees your blog

Google sees your blog completely differently from you. It does not see the colors and pictures that may be on your blog posts. In order to make it easier for Google to see the way your blog looks, use the data highlighter in Google’s webmaster tools. Once you verify your blog, the data highlighter will allow you to let Google know how your blog looks (pictures, text, author name, etc). Using the data highlighter only takes 10-15 minutes, and it can have a big impact on your search engine traffic.

#5: Not improving your blog’s bounce rate

Your blog’s bounce rate allows search engines to identify how interesting your blog is. If your bounce rate is 100%, that means people are visiting your blog and then leaving without reading another article. A high bounce rate is bad for SEO and results in fewer conversions.

In order to see where your bounce rate is at, verify your blog with Alexa and then see their stats. Your blog’s bounce rate should be under 70%. A bounce rate under 70% means that at least 30% of your visitors are reading multiple articles on your blog. The lower you can get that bounce rate, the better your SEO and conversions will be.

You can lower your bounce rate through a variety of ways. Here are some of them:

Include links to your older blog posts in your new ones
Use Hello Bar to promote one of your articles, or better yet, a landing page
Show related articles at the bottom of every blog post
Show popular articles on your sidebar
Redirect people to another page on your blog after they subscribe. This page should contain links to the best content on your blog.
Show summaries of blog posts so people have to click (lowering bounce rate) to read the entire blog post

Most people do not see a sudden drop in their bounce rates. It takes a few weeks before seeing a significant drop in your bounce rate, and when I say significant drop, that usually means a 5-10% drop. Getting your bounce rate under 60% means you are moving in the right direction.

Read more at http://www.business2community.com/blogging/10-seo-mistakes-will-hurt-blogs-search-ranking-01280760#LQ697pB5LWihm3OY.99

Don’t Miss Out On Local Business When Planning Your SEO

These days it is more important than ever for businesses to have an online profile. This is not only a positive step for the business itself but also so that customers and potential customers can find them. For brick and mortar businesses the use of local SEO is essential as most people now use their smartphones to locate goods and services in their area. So, it makes perfect sense to make use of the internet to provide information about business location, goods and services offered, opening hours and so on. You do not even need to have a big fancy website either, there are plenty of free local business directories that you can use so that people can find you. The best thing is that your business can be any size to make use of local search engine optimisation strategies, so whether you have an office in your dining room or have branches all over the country, you too can obtain more business.

SEO covers a whole plethora of strategies that you can make use of to promote your business locally and that will increase your turnover. In the end, this is what it’s all about, increasing business and making more money. The one thing you do need to remember is that whatever techniques you use must be natural looking. It is vital that you do not fall foul of the rules and that you don’t force anything. You could write a blog that has local information on it and optimize that content so that it is relevant to your local area. Make sure you register your business with Google My Business, this will make sure that the search engine knows about your business and where it is located which means that it will feature when people are looking for whatever you offer in your area. Don’t discount social media, it can really help boost your local profile particularly if you are willing to spend a little bit of time interacting with your local followers. If you can exchange links with other relevant local firms, this can be a real gem because obtaining really good quality links can be extremely difficult these days. It is however, vital that you only link with businesses that have a common interest with yours, so for instance, if you own a pet supplies shop, you could link with the local veterinary surgery or boarding kennels and because they are not in the same niche, they are not competitors so you can help each other.

As I’ve already said, so many people now use smartphones to surf the net and in fact, it is believed that within a few years this number will overtake the numbers using laptops or desktop computers. Do not miss out on this opportunity, being left behind now will mean that you won’t catch up or will have missed out on so much potential business that your competitors will have overtaken you.

 

Local search engine optimization isn’t just about local mom-and-pop shops anymore. Practically any business can take advantage of local SEO’s benefits. Since Google’s fan-named “Pigeon” update in 2014, the importance of local SEO has grown, leading many entrepreneurs to focus on their strategy despite going years without considering a local tangent to their inbound marketing campaign. Others, who already practiced regular local optimization strategies, saw the update as an opportunity to increase their efforts even further.

These moves are savvy, because local SEO has risen in importance, but the ride isn’t over yet. Over the next few years, I anticipate that local SEO will become even more impactful and more useful for businesses. Here’s why.

Google loves local businesses.

Over the years, Google has shown slight favoritism toward newer, smaller, more agile companies. While most of its ranking biases have to do with a brand’s history and authority, Google also wants to give the people what they want — and that often means showcasing nimbler, more popular brands.

It also has to do with enabling small-business owners, who have limited access to resources, more potential in breaking new ground. Google has a long history of providing free tools — such as Analytics, Webmaster Tools and so on — to business owners for the sole purpose of helping them increase their online visibility. Because Google cares about (dare I say “loves”) local businesses, you can expect Pigeon to be only the beginning of its locally-focused updates.

There will be more individualized results.

Google also loves giving people individualized results. While its predictive and customized search features are relatively limited for the time being, already the search engine is able to generate specific results based on the person who is searching. As long as you’re logged into a Google account, your search history and your geographic location both play into the type of results you see.

As Google grows more sophisticated and users start demanding even more individualized results, the importance of local optimization will only grow.

The growth of mobile and wearable devices.

Each year, the percentage of online searches performed on mobile devices has grown definitively, and as you might imagine, the majority of mobile searches are performed while on the go. With the dawn of wearable devices, such as the Apple Watch, users will start using on-the-go searches even more frequently, with even more immediate needs.

As a result, proximity-based searches will likely start to become popular, and local searches will be based on hyper-specific locations, rather than just on a regional or neighborhood-specific basis. In effect, wearable devices will drive a much more geographically relevant network of information and eliminate even more barriers between the digital and physical worlds.

Competition is increasing.

Every year, millions of new sites are created and thousands of new businesses stabilize as formidable enterprises. In response, potential search visibility is actively dropping in many areas, with features such as the Knowledge Graph taking over search engine results pages and long-standing blue chip brands dominating the national search landscape.

Competition is increasing, so business owners will be forced to find smaller target niches in order to achieve relevant visibility. One of the most efficient ways to do this is to optimize locally, so local SEO will only grow in importance as competition continues to increase.

How to get started with a local SEO campaign.

If you’re intimidated by the notion of starting a local SEO campaign, don’t be. It’s actually a pretty straightforward process, though it will take you some time and effort.

Local citation correction. Your first job is to make sure your business is listed accurately and appropriately throughout the web. Claim your local business profile on local directory and review sites such as Yelp and TripAdvisor, as well as any other directories that are relevant for your business.

Read more here: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/247515

SEO in 2015 – What Has Changed and By How Much?

There is always a lot of talk about how SEO is changing all the time and to a degree this is true. It is however more about the change in quantity of each part of the ‘SEO Recipe’ than the addition of new factors. However saying that, new factors do arise and in 2015 three have been added to the list of factors that affect the rankings of a site, these being ‘Vertical Search’,  ‘Direct Answers’ and ‘HTTPS’.

Positive SEO Factors

The changes in the recipe are reflected by ‘movements, both positive and negative’ in the amount that each item is likely to affect any rankings. There is no doubt some truth to much of this, but the fact of the matter is that Google only uses any of its own rules as a guide to how it will rate a site, and often seems to list sites that, based on the rules that we know simply do not deserve that high page ranking.

It must also be said that the experiments / research that have led to the publication of the data and table below cannot be said to be totally scientific, for the simple reason that there are too many variables influencing  the rankings gained. However, saying all this, the data is useful and for my part seems to be following the path / trend of Semantic SEO.

Quality Content is Good for SEO

The first indication that this is the case comes in the very first part of the SEO Periodic Table, the ‘Cq’ (for Quality of the Content’) being give an +3 factor, the ‘symbol’ below, for Research into the Keywords that you want to rank for, also being given a +3. The latter I feel really relates to the fact that this research leads on to the inclusion of the ‘right’ words on a page, words that are relevant to the search term targeted AND ones that Google ‘expects to see’.

The latter point is an interesting by the way, as it is all about the ‘Reverse Engineering’ of web pages. The process is simple enough. You decide upon the target phrase, then discover the top sites on Google for that phrase and what words are found on the majority. It stands to reason then, that using the same words (as far as is possible and looks right) on a page on a site will increase the possibility of that page being ranked for the target phrase.

This is all music to the copy writers ears, as now, besides the target words, they are also provided with a list of words to use as well as an indication to which are the most important.

However, to get back to the SEO table,  we can see the words on the pages actually has its own symbol, the with a +2.

Other factors are ‘old’ ones, but with their ‘power’ updated to take into account how much they appear to affect rankings today in 2015. One that is especially interesting is the ‘Hd’ symbol (for Meta Description). This is indeed a factor that has been around for many years now, but today, it has another way of altering the rankings of its page.

This change stems from the ‘SEO Feedback Loop’ that Google is now suspected of running. Here the CTR (Click Through Rate) % of all the links on a Google SERPS result are checked, the idea being that if a page is listed but only gets a low CTR there must be something wrong with the way it is listed and this of course is the owners fault.

The owner can of course monitor low CTR by checking on Webmaster Tools (Now Google Search Console) and then make some changes (to the Meta Description) in order to boost the CTR. However, if they don’t and the pages CTR continues to be low,  the page may lose it’s SERP’s listing (or at least be demoted), thus the need to make sure it is right becomes obvious  and why the power of the Meta Description has been increased.

Mobile Friendly Sites

Another change is that of the symbol ‘Am’ for mobile. This has increased by 2 points as well, and of course refers to the need for all sites to be Mobile Friendly.

On the other hand, we have those factors that have a Negative effect on rankings, all the old favourites like ‘paid links’ (Vp) , Keyword Stuffing (Vs) and Spammy links (VI) being present.

As I say, it is the quantity of each component of recipe that changes, not the (for the most part at least) the actual components.

The article (and table) is a good read though and I’d recommend it, and thank the hardworking staff at SearchEngineLand for it too.

The latest version of Search Engine Land’s Periodic Table Of SEO Success Factors is now out. This is the third edition since we first launched our search engine optimization framework in 2011. Below, a rundown of what’s new and changed, as well as a reintroduction to the table.

The Table’s Goal & Philosophy

Our goal with the Periodic Table Of SEO is to help publishers focus on the fundamentals needed to achieve success with search engine optimization. This means it’s not about trying to list all 200 Google ranking factors or detail Google’s 10,000 subfactors. It’s not about trying to advise if keywords you want to rank for should go at the beginning of an HTML title tag or the end. It’s not about whether or not Facebook Likes are counted for ranking boosts.

Search Engine Land Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors

http://searchengineland.com/seotable/download-periodic-table-of-seo

Instead, the table is designed to broadly guide those new to or experienced with SEO into general areas of importance. Title tags are generally important. Think about making sure they’re descriptive. Social sharing is often generally seen as good for SEO. Aim for social shares, without worrying about the specific network.

If you want to understand more about the philosophy of the table, read our posts from when the table debuted in 2011 and when it was updated in 2013.

What The SEO Table Covers

There are two major classes of factors:

On-The-Page: factors that are largely within the control of publishers
Off-The-Page: factors are influenced often by others or not directly tied to a publisher’s site
Within these two classes are seven categories of factors, which are:

Content – factors relating to the content and quality of your material
Architecture – factors about your overall site functionality
HTML – factors specific to web pages
Trust – factors related to how trustworthy & authoritative a site seems to be
Links – factors related to how links impact rankings
Personal – factors about how personalized search results influence rankings
Social – factors on how social recommendations impact rankings
Overall, there are 37 individual factors, which range from making use of descriptive HTML title tags to whether a site has success with visitor engagement. Here’s a close-up of the table, focusing on just the factors:

Don’t Make These Common SEO Mistakes

Having a fabulous website is one thing, getting visitors to it is quite another. The problem is, that there is millions of other fabulous websites on the internet so yours could easily get lost in the throng. So, how can you get visitors to your site and get it on the search engine rankings? Well, many roads lead to Rome and most people use SEO and or PPC to publicise their sites.

SEO takes many guises but there are some mistakes that you should avoid like the plague and these include:

The saying that ‘content is king’ holds very true so do not skimp on your content. It needn’t be pages and pages of commentary, it is the quality of what you have written that counts. A shorter well written piece is worth more than thousands of meaningless words, so consider your content carefully.

Don’t get too hung up on SEO, in the past, all you had to do was make sure you had the right keywords all over your content. Nowadays, that is likely to get you a penalty, so, yes, you can still use keywords but you need to use them cautiously and they must be used in context. Long tail keywords are particularly useful, more so if you are trying to attract a local audience as you can include place names in these. Using keywords in such a way that they are part of the answers to searchers queries will help your cause.

These days it really is vital to consider who is going to be visiting your site. You need to know what your target audience is looking for and make sure that your content reflects this. There is no point in attracting people who are not interested in your site, they won’t hang around and the search engines do notice this. The search engines are geared to matching content to appropriate searches and this is why you need to know exactly who you want to visit your website.

Never ever pass off someone else’s writing as your own, this is plagiarism and is in effect, theft. Create your own content, written in your own words or you might find that your site rankings take a severe downwards plunge or worse, your site could be de-indexed which means it will not be found via search engines. Duplicate content is another no-no, make sure that none of the pages of your site have duplicate content within them, each page should have totally unique content. You can use curated text however, there are rules regarding its use and these must be adhered to.

Don’t ignore social media, it is not valuable on its own, but as part of an overall SEO strategy, it does have its place and could make the difference between a prominent listing and getting lost in the crowd. It does require a bit of work to nurture it but this is well worth the effort.

 

Creating a search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy is hardly a new challenge for businesses, but many still get the basics wrong at disastrous cost in this digital age.

At the same time SEO demands continue to evolve. Google, for example, recently followed ned user behaviour and changed its search algorithms to favour mobile-friendly sites in its rankings.

So for those keen to avoid the major pitfalls, here are the top ten SEO mistakes made by businesses, according to Amo Sokhi, managing director at SEO specialist agency Polaris…

1. Not thinking about mobile users

Many businesses still conduct SEO without considering mobile traffic as a key component within their strategy. On average, over 40 percent of online visitors browse destination websites through a mobile device during their online journey. With Google releasing mobile specific algorithms to track and monitor mobile specific website performance, businesses need to start thinking about mobile users just as much as traditional desktop users alike. 

2. Inefficient website structure

Many businesses naturally develop their website structure over time without any real strategy or SEO logic. After years of adding categories, information pages and product lines, the result is an uneven, bloated site structure that gives little value to key categories and landing pages and stops users from migrating easily around the website. Getting a site -wide audit  helps to overcome this natural mistake, which mroe than 80 percent of businesses make as they develop into seasoned online retailers. 

3. Poor SEO objective setting

So many SEO stakeholders still set poor objectives for SEO based on simplistic metrics such as Rankings. A good SEO campaign will be broken down into quarterly segments, with objectives set each quarter depending on the maturity of the campaign. 

4. Duplicating meta tags across thousands of dynamic product pages

Many database-driven websites all carry duplicate meta data such as title tags and descriptions due to poor content management system (CMS) setup. By installing a plugin or having custom formats for dynamic database-driven pages this mistake can be overcome.

5. Carrying out a site migration without notifying Google

Sites are migrated onto new domains, or re-launched on a new platform (with new URLs), and the relevant notifications and redirects are not carried out. When URL locations change, 301 redirects need to be put in place to ensure users continue to arrive at desired destinations within the website. When a site is migrated to a new domain, Google should be notified using the “change of address” tool within Google Search Console, so that they can update their indexes. 

6. Forgetting to integrate Google Search Console (Webmaster Tools)

Many internal dev teams spend thousands of man hours developing cutting edge functionality for destination sites but unfortunately forget to integrate the Search Console tag. Without this, SEO-critical updates cannot be carried out and Google cannot notify webmasters of issues with sites. 

7. Not updating Sitemaps

Updating a website sitemap has many benefits. Not only does it provide easier navigation as well as better visibility by search engines when they come to index the site but it also offers the opportunity to inform search engines about any changes on site. Having a dynamic sitemap means it will update itself and also notifies search engines when a page has been added. Should webmasters choose to ignore adding a sitemap, it will take search engines much longer to crawl and index the site which is bad news if you make regular updates.

8. Migrating a website to a new platform without considering SEO

Moving a website will happen from time to time as a business evolves. Always consider the SEO impact of this move, including 301 redirects, database migration and the impact on the user journey. Putting together a migration plan at the earliest possible stage allows for all stakeholders to be aware of the work needed by each party and the timescales associated with this work. Getting a migration wrong can have an ongoing impact on traffic, rankings and overall conversions.

Click to continue reading: http://www.techworld.com/tutorial/social-media/10-seo-mistakes-made-by-businesses-3615277/

Mo Farah – Drug Testing – SMS Messaging and Newsjacking

You cannot have failed to notice all the ‘fuss’ about Mo Farah and drugs testing at the moment, it’s the sort of news that the press just love…

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Image by Ronnie Macdonald via Flickr

 Newsjacking

Such news items are however also a great time to do a spot of ‘Newsjacking’ where with a bit of creative thought, you can ride the wave a little and promote a relevant business or product.

So, when I listened to the news and found out, to my surprise that all athletes had to register where they would be an hour an hour a day for the next three months, AND BE SURE TO BE THERE, just in case an unannounced dope test was scheduled for then, I thought, WOW, this is just where one of the clients of SOM could really, really help out.

The client in question is FastSMS, the service they provide being SMS messaging. You will no doubt have received text messages from your Doctor, the dentist, your garage, etc reminding you of a future appointment (and if has not happened it soon will, as long as you have a mobile phone that is).

SMS Messaging in Action

Thus, when I heard that these poor athletes have to remember to be somewhere (up to three months in advance) I thought, is not this a great application for SMS Text messaging?

All you would need to do is to have a mobile phone number associated with an Athletes entry into the ‘Where I will be’ Dope Testing system and a little bit of ‘programming magic’ that sends them a text the day before saying where they ‘have to be’ tomorrow, with another 2 hrs before.

JOB DONE, I reckon, no excuses and less hassle for all.

I have had a word with FastSMS and they are looking into this right now, and will soon have a post up on their blog, they are even considering offering this service to the dope testing people at UKAD.

This is a good example of ‘NewsJacking’, in a positive manner and should be born in mind by just about any business there is….

Mo Farah put his hopes of competing at London 2012 at risk by allegedly missing two drugs tests in the buildup to the Games and was warned by his coach Alberto Salazar that “they will hang you if you miss another”.

Under World-Anti Doping rules, a third missed test within the space of 12 months is the equivalent of a failed drugs test – and so would have left Farah, who went on to take 5,000m and 10,000m gold in London, facing a minimum of a two-year ban.

According to the Daily Mail, which has seen an email exchange between the UK Anti-Doping Agency and Farah’s representatives, Farah missed one test in 2010 and another in early 2011 shortly after he had joined Salazar’s training group in Oregon..

See the full article

Not All Businesses Are Destined For Globalisation, Local Search Is More Appropriate

There are lots of business owners who dream of growing their small local business into a worldwide giant with outlets in all the major cities around the globe. Whilst this is not really a realistic option for most SMEs, every business has to start somewhere even if that somewhere is a bit of space for a home office in the dining room.

Obtaining a high quality website is usually an important step for the business as this is the start of its online presence. It can feel like the start of globalisation for the business owner even though in reality, most of their turnover comes from local custom. It is important to remember that actually that local trade is very important so making sure that anyone looking for the goods you sell or the services you offer are easily found by those searching in your area.

Always make sure that your business website is listed in directories such as Google Places, Yell and so on. Any directory that offers a map is going to be useful because when the searcher clicks on the results, a map will be shown and they will be able to find your premises. These days, many people do searches using their mobile phones so they can easily navigate to your business using the map. So if you own a pet supplies shop and someone is looking for a dog bowl, they can type in ‘buy dog bowl in Townsville’, your business should appear in the listings complete with directions.

Targeting local keywords will really help with local trade, so having your chosen keywords alongside the name of the town or region is key to success. People will often type in local keywords when they are searching for particular goods or services in their local area. So, the pet supplies business will have many products and services on offer which could be being searched for by potential customers. Terms such as cat treats Townsville, Bloggs Pet Supplies Townsville, flea treatments Townsville and so on could very easily rank highly in the search engines which in turn means an increase in local trade.

So, taking into account the type of business, it is possible for Bloggs Pet Supplies to become a global player but it is more likely that it will remain a small or medium sized business with 1 or more stores in the region. It may grow to the point where it is nationwide however, as most of its clientele are going to be local customers, it would be prudent to target marketing efforts on the local area rather than going global. It is up to the business and its advisors to decide whether going global is going to be beneficial and whether it is even going to be worth the investment to try.

 

Search engines have been working hard on fine-tuning their algorithms to provide high quality search results based on location.

Google is the best covered in the industry, with its Pigeon update launching in July 2014 and rolling out to UK, Canada and Australia in December. Use the links if you want to learn more about the update.

It’s one thing to know that local search is important and can affect your SERPs presence but it’s another entirely to know how to ‘do’ local SEO effectively.

Having spent some time researching, then actually implementing most of the core local SEO tactics for a few websites, I thought I’d share my thoughts on the top 10 things you can and should be doing, in order of priority (please note – my priority order, I’m not claiming it as a definitive best practice statement).

You’ll notice that this blog is geared towards organisations with local offices/stores, rather than pureplay online stores servicing a local area.

This is because a significant chunk of local search is people looking for places near to them, whether that’s to buy products or enjoy local services, and many of the effective online SEO tactics are focused on physical stores.

The search engines have also invested in tools to allow you to set-up local business listings to improve search visibility for stores.

Here’s my top 10…..

1. Create a unique landing page for each store

A unique store page can be optimised to provide content that is relevant to local customers and targeted at local keyword searches.

Start by thinking about your customers; what information are they likely to need for your store? A good store page should include:

  • Address and phone number (in a standardised NAP format).
  • Additional contact details e.g. email, contact form, social media icons.
  • Map and directions (embedding a Google Map is a popular option).
  • Opening times.
  • High quality photos of the store.
  • Store services provided.
  • Calendar of events (if relevant).
  • In-store promotions and offers.

From a pure SEO point of view, each page needs an optimised:

  • URL e.g. /stores/store-name rather than just a numerical store code like /stores/1234
  • Page title
  • H1
  • Meta description
  • Schema.org markup
  • Canonical tag (in case there are any filters that could generated duplicate content)

Please note this list isn’t exhaustive as there are lots of SEO considerations but the above is the minimum to cater for. Below is a good example from Selfridges, although the meta data could be better optimised e.g. the H1 for each store page is ‘Our Stores’ which has no reference to location.

 

2. Add a business listing for each store

You can add your business to Google and Bing free of charge using the simple online set-up forms. Make sure you verify each listing, a small but important detail.

It’s advisable to create a business Google and Microsoft account to do this rather than creating the listing from a personal account. This is especially important for Google when you start linking other Google properties like Google+ pages and YouTube channels.

It’s important to add optimised content for the store listing, so think carefully about the business name, category and description.

You want the business page to be found for relevant searches but you also want the business listing to appeal to potential customers.

The advantage of a verified business listing is greater SERPs dominance for brand searches, which can increase CTR. Below is an example of a startup I helped to build out its local SEO, showing Google results for a brand search.

You’ll notice the reviews showing in the knowledge graph area, see 4. below for more info on the benefits. This is really important for SMEs where the business isn’t established

Click the link to continue reading: https://econsultancy.com/blog/66574-10-essentials-for-local-seo-success/

What To Do When Your Link Building Campaign Fails

Link building comes in many guises and today is increasingly to do with getting Social Signals (Tweets, Likes, Shares etc) as well as conventional HTTP style links from one site to another. As we have discussed, the ‘power’ of links (for SEO Purposes, traffic is a different ball game entirely) is dropping, Google trying to move away from using links as a guide to what is best because the whole area has been ‘gamed’ by SEO companies trying to inflate the importance of a site beyond the level which it really deserves.

This is not wrong of course, Google have told people (to some degree at least) how they decide on who to rank for what, so if a business wants to sell more it is going to try to get listed for what they sell, and if this means ‘cheating a little’ that is tough, some would say that is ‘business’…

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Public Domain from pixabay

Just the like a barrister is a the judicial system, it is not my job (or any other SEO company’s for that matter) to ‘judge’ (what site should be Number 1), we simply have to do the best for our clients.

More Content Required if Rankings Wanted!

The fact  is that we do often tell them that they have to do a lot of work on their site (better content) to get better rankings, this needed as well as the links and the creation of ‘signposts’ on their site to help Google understand what the site is all about.

But to get back to the topic, the blog below is all about links, this covering all the areas of linking and giving some vey useful tips of what to do and what not to do. The full article can be found at:-

http://searchengineland.com/link-building-campaign-fails-222357

and is well worth the read..

 

So, your link building campaign didn’t perform as expected — now what? Columnist Casie Gillette weighs in on how we can learn from our mistakes.

You spent weeks crafting the perfect link building campaign. The content idea you came up with was researched, drafted, and re-drafted — and the final piece was fantastic! People were identified for outreach, emails were sent, tweets were tweeted, and then… crickets.

The piece didn’t get nearly as many shares as you’d hoped; it garnered no links; and many of the people you reached out to didn’t even respond. What gives?

Did something go wrong? Is it possible the campaign wasn’t as awesome as you thought it was?

Unfortunately, as with most marketing initiatives, not every campaign is going to be a massive hit. The key to future success, however, is being able to push aside your frustration, take a step back, and figure out what to do next. After all, you don’t want all of that time and effort to go to waste.

To help you get back on track and make sure your next campaign performs better, here are a few tips on what to do when your link building campaign fails:

Reevaluate

First and foremost, reevaluate your promotion strategy. So often, a content promotion/link building strategy simply entails finding people we think should be interested in our content and then telling them about our content. No.

Part of creating a successful promotion strategy, especially when it involves outreach to those you don’t know, is identifying people early and interacting with them before your content goes live.

That way, when your content is ready to go, you aren’t a stranger spamming them — you’re someone they know and (hopefully) like.

In addition to connecting with people beforehand, it’s important to make sure you’re connecting with them the right way.

Find The Right Medium

At an event several years ago, a speaker noted that if you wanted to reach him, you should connect with him in a place that’s less crowded. His email was constantly being barraged, and his Twitter feed was hard to keep up with.

What he suggested instead was reaching out to him through Google+ or LinkedIn. These were places where he was more likely to get the message and more likely to respond.

Tip: Connect with people where they are active but where there is less noise.

Find The Right Time

We’re all busy. Between work, family, and life in general, there just isn’t a lot of extra time in the day — and there certainly isn’t a lot of time in the day to help a random person promote their content.

When evaluating your content strategy, take a look at when you did your outreach. Did you send an email on a Monday morning? Did you look to see if the person was traveling or on vacation?

Before you actually send that email or push out that tweet, do some research on the person to find out if they are even in the office. Take a look back at previous messages or previous social updates to see when they are most active and/or most likely to respond.

Tip: By identifying the most optimal time, you increase the odds of your message being seen and acted upon.

Communicate The Benefit

When reevaluating your outreach, take a look at the messaging itself. Did you actually communicate the reason your recipient would be interested in your work, or did you simply tell them you had a piece of content you thought they’d be interested in? If it’s the latter, there’s a good reason they didn’t help you.

Tip: The outreach message shouldn’t be about you and your content. It must help the person in some way.

Track Your Outreach

There are some great free tools out there (e.g., Rapportive, Sidekick, Yesware) that will tell you if and when an email was opened.

Take a look and see if your emails were even opened. Perhaps they went to spam, or perhaps they were opened once and forgotten about. In that case, think about what you can do in the future.

 

If You Aren’t Quite Ready To Move On…

As you reevaluate, if you decide you just aren’t ready to throw in the towel on the content you worked so hard to create, consider doing a quick paid promotion. A small budget could help your piece gain some traction. Don’t believe me? Check out this piece from Larry Kim — $50 could mean major press.

Repurpose

Don’t let your great piece of content go to waste! Seriously.

After spending all that time and effort, make sure you get the most out of your content. Whether you turn it into an infographic, a Slideshare, or a blog series, make sure you don’t just set it and forget it.

Tip: Neil Patel has a really useful guide on the various ways you can repurpose content, and it’s well worth the read.

On the other hand, if your promotion plan was spot on and you can’t figure out a way to repurpose your content, perhaps the content wasn’t quite as great as you thought.

Which leads us to our next step…

Refocus

At my last job, we came up with an awesome contest that would drive links, build brand awareness, and get people talking about us. Except that it didn’t.

While I still stand by the fact the contest idea was awesome, our execution wasn’t done as well as it needed to be. On top of that, the timing was way off.

The problem is, after you’ve gotten buy-in from execs and the money to execute a campaign, failure can be really hard to swallow. It can also make it really hard to get buy-in and budget the next time around.

Refocus your efforts on some of the smaller things that can help drive results. As long as performance continues to improve, you’ll likely be able to try a bigger campaign down the road.

Retry

As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, all campaigns are not going to be a hit; unfortunately, even when links seem warranted, you may not get many. As I heard at SMX Advanced last week, links are harder to come by these days.

 

10 Common SEO Myths Exposed

I have been working in the area of Search Engine Optimisation for 14 years now and have seen a lot of changes (and also a lot of misinformation published) so it was with a lot of JOY that I found this blog and its attached Infographic.

The whole thing is 100% sense and accurate in my view, in fact I could have (should have?) written it myself. In the full article (only a piece of it included below to keep to the ‘etiquette’ of the web, so you’ll need to go there to see the Infographic) you  can see how each of 10 Myths are shown to be just that, myths.

Besides covering the fact that SEO is not Dead (love that one, keeps coming up), it also tells how ‘proper’ SEO is not a bag of tricks but a clever strategic plan that gets a site’s content the exposure it deserves.

The latter phrase is very important though, as now, with Google getting smarter and smarter by the minute (to some degree this smartness is being provided by its users – see my blog on the SEO feedback loop – it’s not all computer power) a site will soon only get really good rankings and traffic if it ie really good (sounds fair to me).

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The fact the now Google is ‘demanding’ longer pieces of work is also covered, as well as how Guest Blogging is still a good way of delivering ‘power’ to a site (but only if the site too has great content – remember that bit, it’s important).

Another great myth that is covered is that Google ‘hates SEO’, it does not and in fact needs site’s to co-operate with it and lay things out in a certain way, which after all is a part of SEO.

A great SEO Article and Infographic, do read the curated bit below and then visit the source for the rest and the great Infographic.

If you’ve done any research regarding SEO online, then you’ve probably noticed that in addition to all the tips and tricks everyone claims to know, there are a lot of contradicting statements about the use of SEO as well.
This is because there are a lot of SEO myths floating around, myths that you shouldn’t fall for, myths that makes us cringe every time we come across articles like that.

The following are the 10 most common SEO myths that you should be aware of:

1. SEO is Dead! Again!

This cry of anguish echoes across the web every time that Google releases a new algorithm. It happened when Google released, Panda, Penguin, Florida and Hummingbird Mobilegeddon and it will continue to happen.

And guess what? It’s never true. Here’s the thing – SEO is never going to just be rendered obsolete by one of Google’s algorithms. Instead, it will just become more complicated and, at sometimes, more frustrating. For example, in the early stages of SEO, keywords were all that mattered.
As long as you put as many keywords as possible into your content, your page ranking would increase. Obviously, Google didn’t like this as it diminished the quality of their search results pages. So they changed the algorithm. Now Google puts as much emphasis on social activities, high-quality content and content marketing that it does on keywords.

This made sense for Google to do since more and more content is being posted on the Internet every day, which means competition is getting stronger. In fact, it’s because of the competition that SEO will still play a vital part in online marketing and why there continues to be a growing demand for SEO agencies.

When it comes down to the bottom line, SEO isn’t going anywhere because Google needs these signals in order to accurately determine the quality of content.

2. SEO is All Tricks

Sure, there are “tricks” that you can do in order to boost your page ranking, but these tricks are considered black hat tactics that Google not only frowns upon, but penalizes. Real SEO is about improving content organization and the user browsing experience, which includes:

•    Creating helpful and informative content that meets the needs of users.
•    Making content easier to find for both users and search engines.
•    Improving accessibility through the user experience and the website architecture.
•    Optimizing your content for social sharing standards.
•    Improving technical standards in order to assist search engines in categorizing and serving content to the proper audience.
•    Increasing exposure as well as web traffic through links and mentions.

Tricks have nothing to do with real SEO. Real SEO takes effort and requires quality in order to be effective.

3. SEO is a One-time Effort

One of the biggest misconceptions about SEO is that it’s something you do to your website once and then you’re done. Anyone who thinks this is going to be in for a rude awakening as they watch their page ranking plummet over time. SEO is something that needs to be consistently worked on. The following are a few of the reasons why you need to consistently work on SEO:

•    Link degradation – A good website has links to different websites and vice versa. However, if any pages stop working or a website disappears, your links won’t work anymore. This is called link degradation, or link rot. You need to check your links on a regular basis to avoid link degradation.

•    Publishing new content – You are going to lose web traffic as well as interest in your brand if you don’t publish new content on a regular basis. New content will attract more visitors, who will then be able to share that content on social channels, causing a domino effect that could result in more leads.
 
•    Evolving search engine algorithms – You’ve got to keep up with new algorithms as they can change how your website is ranked.
 
•    Competition – If you don’t keep your content up to date and release new content regularly, your audience will end up finding its way over to competing websites that do keep their website up to date.

•    Outdated content – If you no longer carry a product or offer a service, you need to make sure this is reflected on your website’s content or else you’re going to annoy and confuse potential customers.

4. Meta Tags Don’t Matter

The meta tag includes the title tag, meta description and keywords of a page. Many experts believed meta tags went the way of the dinosaur after the Hummingbird update. Sure, Google doesn’t use them as a factor in its page rankings anymore. However, they are still important as they not only tell search engines what your site is about, they tell users what your site is about.

5. The Length of Content Doesn’t Matter

The length of your content actually does have a big impact on your SEO. If you look at the average length of the content on web pages ranking in the top 10 results for any keyword on Google, you’ll see that it’s at least 2,000 words. In fact, the higher up you look on the search listings page, the more content each web page has. One of the reasons is that longer content is more in-depth than shorter content – and people are much more likely to link to an in-depth piece of content.

Length matters, and longer content performs better.

6. Social Activity Doesn’t Matter

Anyone who says that social activity has no bearing on SEO must be living under a rock. Google takes into account the social signals of your content when determining its page ranking. Content that is shared, liked or commented on will be rewarded with higher page rankings. This is because Google takes social activity as a sign of quality.

7. Guest Blogging Doesn’t Work Anymore

There was a big uproar in 2014 when Matt Cutts announced that guest blogging no longer worked. Except that this isn’t what he said. He said that you shouldn’t use guest blogging as a way to get links. What people were misunderstanding was that he was warning against publishing poor content on other blogs as a means of improving your link building campaign. Guest blogging is no different than regular blogging – you’re posting content online.

Matt Cutts later took back what he said about guest posting and apologized.

8. You’ll Lose Traffic if You Link to Other Websites

Yes, you will be redirecting visitors away from your website if you do this. But it’s only a temporary loss of traffic. By linking to authority websites, you’re showing visitors that you are willing to provide them with high quality content no matter where it’s located. If anything, this builds trust in your visitors. Not to mention that by linking to strong websites you’ll help boost your web ranking, which in turn will help bring in more organic traffic. The following are a few tips you should keep in mind when linking to authority websites:

9. Google Hates SEO

Google doesn’t hate SEO at all – in fact, it depends on it to help better match high quality content to user search intent. What it doesn’t like is websites that attempt to take advantage of SEO in order to artificially boost their page rankings since this hurts the quality of Google’s search results. Embrace SEO as a way to create a high quality website and to improve your reach, not as a way to just get more traffic.
10. Great Content is All You Need

You’ve heard it so many times – “Content Is King.” It’s true to an extent, great content is the foundation of a successful online marketing campaign. However, just because you produce amazing content doesn’t mean that readers will start magically appearing to promote your content and brand for you. SEO is necessary in order to get your content the exposure it needs to have an impact.

These are 10 all-too-common SEO myths that you should make sure you don’t fall for!