Google, What Should We Expect in Terms of SEO?

Google’s head of search spam, Matt Cutts, talks about the search engine’s algorithmic changes coming down the pike in the Summer of 2013 (see Cutts’ 7 minute video below). The changes will be an attempt to improve user experience and hinder spammers.

To avoid problems, Cutts encourages web owners to use high quality content with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind. He says Google’s changes will promote doing a better job of detecting the authority of website and content authors. They are also looking at their filtering software, Panda, to find additional signals to refine things on sites and soften effects, as well as seek additional signals of quality. Google will supposedly be making improvements to how search results are viewed, too. For example, once you’ve seen a cluster of results from one site, you’ll be less likely to see more results from that site as you go deeper into the Google search result pages.

For the average Google user, you probably won’t notice anything has changed or maysimply find search results are better than before. But for website owners who utilize SEO strategies, be aware of your site content and keep it high in quality with clearly defined keywords and phrases. Avoid anything that may be considered ‘black hat’ and be sure to put emphasis on your authorship. If you don’t prepare for the changes, you may see your rankings and traffic take a hit this fall.

Drive SEO Traffic to Your Website Through Strategic Campaigns

When building an SEO campaign, it is important to gauge the results of your online marketing strategy by setting goal tracking on specific areas of your website. The information you glean from any strategic campaign can be used to improve your site’s overall performance, view what action people take while visiting and adjust future campaigns accordingly.

The easiest and cheapest way to gauge results is by setting up goal tracking in Google Analytics using conversion goals and funnels. Once this is set up, not only will you be able to track visits and leads by organic search engine traffic, but you’ll know how many leads came through direct traffic, pay-per-click (if applicable), referrals (in bound links) and emails campaigns as well.

The graph on the left shows the results of one of our client websites a day after they sent an email blast to their own client base. The search traffic, referral traffic and direct traffic are roughly evenly distributed. The ‘campaigns’ shows the percent of traffic received so far on an email blast sent to their own client base a few days ago. This is the current goal funnel we are focusing on right now. The email blast referenced a website link and the readers are clicking to view the page. We will track the results of this campaign to determine its effectiveness and continued marketing strategy.

For assistance with setting up an online strategic campaign for your own website, contact Gallop Web Services. Ask us about improving your website’s referral traffic through our local business listing services.

Start Off the New Year with a Stronger Online Business Presence

When business owners discuss Search Engine Optimization (SEO) with us what they are basically saying is they want to bring people to their website “now!” and it doesn’t really matter how they get there. Well, it does matter “how” you get people to a site and it also matters “why” you are trying to drive them there in the first place. If visitors go to your website and aren’t satisfied with what they find there then they don’t ultimately become customers. And getting customers is what the SEO game is really all about.

Heading into 2013, here are 5 current trends to consider with regard to your website and your overall on-line business presence.

1. Do you have a Responsive Website? – New to 2012, a responsive website is designed to adjust itself to size when it is viewed on a wide screen monitor, iPad, laptop or smart phone. You can check to see if your own website fits the bill. How? View the website on your computer screen, click to minimize the screen and then click and drag the sides of your browser window to resize the website’s width. If the website still looks good, and is easy to read and understand, then it is probably adequate for today’s web design standards.

2. Consider a Blog on your website – a blog is a great way to start a conversation. If you have ideas or knowledge to share with others why not put it on your own website to attract potential customers? You’ll build your online credibility with not only people, but the search engines as well.

3. Use social media and tie it to your website – If you own or manage a small business and are not using social media, then you are missing out on one of the most cost-effective tools available for promotion, branding and customer service. Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, etc. are all free and user friendly. At the very least, every business should have a Facebook company page! After setting it up, link your website the Facebook page and/or use a widget to feed the posts to your website for viewing.

4. Get on LinkedIn – every businessman and woman should have a LinkedIn account. It’s free networking!

5. Optimize your online presence as much as possible – perform a Google search on your business name to see if and how it is listed. Review the search results to see what’s what then take steps to build or improve your online presence. If you have a storefront, claim your local business listings and optimize the information with more details—business hours, logo, videos. Consult a professional to optimize your website for higher technical functionality, analyze keywords in the content, and increase visibility with the search engines. To see examples of online business listings, do a Google search on “Gallop Web Services, LLC”.