Does your copywriter even know what they are talking about?

Introduction

Let’s say that you moved into rather impressive offices, you and your management team are now ready to start managing your company.

All well and good, you even have a local web design agency that are beavering away building your new company website.

However, you’ve now decided that the main way that you want to draw in new customers for your company, is by using SEO.

Which is maybe why you landed on our rather brilliant website?

Well for those that know a thing or two about organic SEO, they will know this, that is the core of any digital marketing strategy is often “content marketing”. That’s to say when you need SEO services, often the work that is offered by an agency, is focused partially on writing content marketing.

However, the quality of this work can vary considerably from agency to agency.

And what do we mean by this?

Well, there are some agencies, which write brilliant work, that’s to say they employ highly skilled copywriters, who publish work that will help your customers when they are trying to find an answer to a question that they might have.

The work often involves a lot of research, it looks at questions that your customers often ask, and aims to answer these is best as is feasibly possible. So for example, if you run a business which sells coffee, you might get asked the following questions:

-Is the coffee ethically sourced?

– Do you sell organic coffee?

-Which type of coffee beans go into each blend?

Now, the business that best answers these questions, might help the companies’ customers, so this might lower the companies bounce rate.

With that said, there are the other agencies which are just happy with trying to do as little as possible, and publish work which that might well be deemed as “content thin”. And it is this content thin work, which will damage your businesses organic seo.

If you don’t know what “content thin” means, then do not worry, we shall elaborate on what this means a little later on in this article.

Your content marketing needs to be high-quality

So why does content marketing need to be such high-quality?

After all it takes a very long time to write a good article, which is well researched and proofread, so why bother?

This doesn’t even take into account the amount of work that is also needed to analyse the content marketing to see if it is working to improve the SEO, so that’s right there’s still work to do after it has been published on your company’s website, for example to see if it has say a high bounce rate or not?

A lot of time might be spent writing an article, but also time needs to be spent using an tool, such as Google Analytics to see how many organic visitors the work is getting, also to see how high the bounce rate is as well.

So why should an agency go through all this bother, of having to write detailed work to help your customers?

Well a simple answer is this is if your business is serious about getting your business in Cardiff, onto the first page of Google, then you have to invest time and effort into writing good quality content marketing. As if you don’t, then without this, it becomes very hard to get a company onto the first page of Google.

Yet here’s the thing as well, its not just about implementing work, sitting back and then reaping the results.

Nope, it’s a lot more complicated than that.

You are therefore pitted head-to-head against your main rivals, often they will not be sit back and let many businesses climb to the top of Google unchallenged, no, they will want to be at the top of Google as well, so they will be working hard also to improve their SEO at the same time, this is why its often a constant fight to improve your SEO.

No believe us it is pretty savage out there, the competition are often investing in SEO as well, some might even have deeper pockets and can therefore invest more in organic SEO.

So that’s right, your businesses website is constantly being weighed up against your direct competitors, if they publishing better quality work and are implementing greater better-quality SEO over a longer period of time, and the likely to overtake your business.

Also if the business is not serious about what they can achieve with their marketing budget, that’s to say there up against much larger companies, that have a much higher marketing spends, then you do have to sit down a cup of coffee be realistic as otherwise you could be setting the seo strategy up for failure before its even begun.

There are some agencies, which will tell you that anything is possible, that the sky is the limit, but then in reality you might be up against serious competition, which can simply invest more and may have done so for longer, so you have to weigh up whether you can honestly beat these competitors or not with your marketing budget?

Thin content is likely to damage your businesses SEO

Thin content, it’s something that a lot of agencies do produce, in a nutshell it’s just low-quality written content.

You have to put yourself in your SEO agencies shoes just for a second, they are likely to employ copywriters, now in the morning these copywriters might be writing work for one business which sells ladders, and in the afternoon they might be writing work for a business that sells insurance products.

So that person, the copywriter, may not have much knowledge about what your business actually does, you might just have what we refer to as “superficial knowledge”, that’s a bit of knowledge about what your business does, but they may not have in-depth knowledge about your company.

And guess what?

If a business hasn’t got the marketing budget, or the marketing agency hasn’t got the inclination to do the right research when writing the written work, well it is likely to be mediocre at best and offer any useful advice to your customers.

This work is not likely to offer any helpful advice, it is therefore likely to be say 1000 words of text, which to be honest, is likely to send the reader to sleep! Therefore, its likely to be 1000 words of waffle!

Not only is this damaging to the business, in terms of it being seen as not offering useful advice to your customers, it is also possibly damaging to the businesses SEO as well.

If you want to get on the first page, it’s all about implementing quality.

It’s all about implementing quality SEO, quality is the absolute name of the game. So if your trying to find an SEO company in Cardiff, make sure you hire one which offers quality work.

Your copywriter needs to know what they are talking about

If you’re hiring a copywriter, which simply doesn’t know much about your business, you guessed it the written work is likely to be substandard.

So if you can take away any advice from this article, this would be it, you need to employ a marketing agency, which knows about your industry.

To be more exact, the SEO company that is writing the content marketing, needs to understand your business, and the business sector that you operate within.

It’s not about quantity

Content marketing is not about using your copywriters as if they are working on a factory floor producing goods on a conveyor belt.

What we mean by this is, it’s not about churning out as much work as possible in the shortest period of time, it’s not about “quantity” it’s all about “quality”.

So if your company thinks more is better, at the cost of quality, then you very much mistaken!  

So, what you need is more quality work, with the time taken to research the work, and written by people actually know what they’re talking about, in order to offer useful advice.

How we can help

Here in Cardiff there are hundreds of various companies offering SEO services, therefore you are absolutely spoilt for choice in terms of which agency to go for.

However, if you were business wants quality work a reasonable price and give us a ring?

 

 

What does your agency think should be included in an SEO report?

In this article you can talk about:

–        SEO reporting

–        Why we use Google Analytics when reporting

–        Why we use Google Search Console

–        Why we report on bounce rates

–        Average time spent on site

–        Number of organic visitors

–        We use “Google Search Console”, to see the average position for a range of keywords, for example “seo companies in Cardiff” would be a keyword we track for our own agency

–        Backlinks

–        Digital Marketing Strategies

–        Organic SEO

–        Keywords

–        SEO tools


Why good solid SEO reporting is needed

So, you’ve found an agency, or indeed an SEO consultant that you want to work with? Well, now that’s all well and good- but how you going to know if you are hitting those marketing goals each month?

This means, sure you may like the sales representative for that agency, they are the person that you can most see yourself working with- yet how do you know if the SEO is improving each month?

That’s right, it all boils down to the reporting, and some agencies report in totally different ways. For example, some will use an off-the-shelf SEO tool, of which there are many which generates reports which are then e-mailed straightaway to the clients. So, for example, the actual seo consultant might not have any input into the reporting, there’s no human interpretation of the statistics, there simply e-mail off and that’s it.

Some other businesses might gather the data from multiple different SEO tools, write their own conclusion on the data and then write an opinion to the client. Obviously, the latter, is going to involve some assessment of the data, then this can take longer to write, and is therefore normally reserved for larger SEO projects.


Does your agency use Google Analytics and Google Search Console?

Yes, we most certainly do, here at this agency, we use Google Search Console on a daily basis, the data is reliable, plus it gives us the following data that we need to report to clients:

-Average position data

-Backlink information

-Number of clicks


 

Plus, we also use Google Analytics, again because the data is reliable, we use this for the following purposes when reporting to our clients in Cardiff:

-Number of organic visitors

– The bounce rate

-Time spent on site

Now before we dive into the subject a bit further, we would say that the SEO reporting you require will depend solely upon what your business wants to achieve, for example you might want to drive more social media visitors to your website say via Facebook advertisements, you might want to invest heavily in paid advertising, like Google’s PPC (Pay Per Click) or you might want to improve your organic SEO? So, you will need reporting based on what digital marketing you are investing in, and what your business here in the great city of Cardiff, what’s to achieve.

Therefore, this article is written in the general sense, in that here are some of the details that we think are important when writing an organic SEO report.


Make sure that the report is reporting on what you want

Here’s the thing, too many businesses get baffled by the science (marketing jargon), what do we mean by that?

Sometimes a PDF document can be sent over to a business, which contains the organic SEO report, there might be over 20 pages in total, which is full of marketing jargon, now you have to ask yourself is this really what your business requires?

So don’t be afraid as the client to turn around the agency and say, that you want a simplified report and to say what you want reported on every single month.

This might help some business owners which are rather time constrained, to better understand how the SEO is progressing, so the point we’re trying to make is this, don’t be afraid to say how you want the report to be laid out.

For example, you might run a plumbing business, and you haven’t got the time to flip through 30 odd pages of graphs, pie-charts, and diagrams. So, why not call your agency, and say, look, all I want to know is where the sites ranked each month, for the keywords that you’ve agreed optimise the website for.

So, for example it might be “emergency plumbers”, “central heating repair” and “boiler repair” in the city which you are based, so you’ve agreed this with your SEO agency, so may ask for simplified reporting if this makes it easier for you to keep track of if your businesses seo is improving.


Number of organic visitors

If you are trying to improve your companies SEO here in the rather brilliant country of Wales, we would say that is very important that you have a comparison month on month to how many organic visitors your website is getting. But remember, there’s no point in having millions of organic visitors, unless they are likely to purchase, so you need customers that are looking for the exact products and services you offer.

For example, there’s no point in having 1 million visitors a month, as you visitors coming to your site as you write a lot about classic cars, when what you actually sell is wax for cars, you want shoppers who want to buy car wax that day. A good digital marketing company, so like good seo companies, will make sure they are funnelling the right sort of shoppers to your site.


A comparison of where your businesses visitors are coming from

If you are investing in different forms of digital marketing, for example, you might be paying for pay per click PPC, social media marketing, like on Facebook, Instagram and on Twitter and organic SEO improvements, via a local seo agencies like ours, then you might want to ask for a pie chart from the marketing company, which simply illustrates where the majority of visitors are coming from that month.

For example, you will want to know the percentage of visitors that come from:

-Social media advertising

– Percentage come via your organic SEO

-How many visitors come via PPC


An assessment of the backlinks

Your agency should write an assessment on how many backlinks have been built, and if these are good quality.

What work has been undertaken that month

You should get a written breakdown of what work has been implemented by the SEO consultant that month. For example, if they been working on backlinks, content marketing, or improving the web design?


A written summary by an SEO expert

You should get a written summary which is written by the agency, which gives an opinion on how the SEO is progressing.

How our company can help

If you run a company, and your business is based here in South Wales if you need help to improve your organic SEO then why not give our business a call today?

What are Google’s ranking factors?

Introduction

It simply doesn’t matter if you run an online business, which specialises in selling a luxury dog food in the U.K or you are one of the largest retailers of used cars, if you want to rank higher in Google’s organic results, then you going to need to improve your companies “ranking factors”.

So, what are Google’s ranking factors?

And, does Google weight all of these ranking factors the same?

And how do you go about improving these said ranking factors?
 
And how long does this all take?
 Well as you can see, as with all things SEO related, there is often one question that can open up millions of others, however our SEO experts located in rather wonderful Cardiff, will detail below what are ranking factors, and why they are so important in terms of the SEO process.

What are Google’s ranking factors?

So, let’s say that you are looking for a nice pair of running trainers for your morning runs, so you simply tap into Google, “running trainers” into the search box.

Then Google’s search engine is likely to be present you with over 1 million results, yet like the majority of people, you may well be interested in the companies that are on the first page right in front of you. That’s to say, most people will only click on the businesses on the first page of Google’s SERP’s.

That’s to say, nobody has the time to go through say the first 11 pages on Google to find that ideal pair of trainers, so obviously, the businesses that are on the first page have a rather distinct advantage, in having more organic visitors- so how do you get there? How do you get a business ranked on the first page of Google?

The simple answer is to have the strongest “ranking factors”, If you were to talk to any good digital marketing agency that’s worth their salt about this, well their bound the say well, there is in excess of over 200 ranking factors. So, yep, this is what makes organic seo so mighty complicated, because a good agency, whether there based here in Wales, or another part of the world, will need to improve a businesses ranking factors, which there are hundreds of different factors, and they must follow Google’s WebMaster Guidelines as well, so in a nutshell, they must follow white hat rules.

Is it true, that SEO businesses, don’t know the exact ranking factors themselves?
 

Yes, the long and short of it is this- no marketing agency here in Wales, or across the Globe for that matter knows the exact ranking factors that Google uses to work out where a business should be ranked, that’s right we said it, the only business that knows the exact SEO ranking factors, and how the algorithm works in its entirety is Google.

Obviously they’re not going to go publishing their blueprints of how the Google algorithm works, otherwise everybody would know the companies secret sauce and how to get there business onto the first page.

So, instead, SEO agencies, like ours need to learn as much as we can about white hat seo, how to implement the work so that it follows “Google’s WebMaster Guidelines”.

Is Google’s PageRank still used as a “ranking factor”?
 

Things have moved on a lot since then, that’s to say a lot of people know about Google’s PageRank formula, as they were the early days of how the algorithm works, now things are a lot more complex than that, the algorithm is more sophisticated. This means if you have a marketing team at your company, or you’ve hired an agency, you have  to start thinking about “machine learning” and AI, that’s artificial intelligence, as well, that’s not to mention all the new ranking factors as well.

So for example, if you were to step into a rather fancy agency, you might be sipping a nice cup of latte with them, and they might be talking about bounce rates, UX, time spent on site, the need for split testing, how evergreen content marketing is keeping shoppers on site for longer, so as you can see, things have moved on massive since Google’s PageRank, which mostly looked at incoming backlinks.

Is it true that Google’s ranking factors can change in terms of importance?

They most definitely can- if any SEO agencies were to let the grass grow under their feet, they wouldn’t be very good at what they do.

This means that agencies have to constantly be refreshing your SEO knowledge, as new ranking factors are used by Google’s algorithm for example, the introduction of Google RankBrain and AI, but also, because ranking factors change in terms of how important they are.

What happens when Google rolls out an algorithm update?

Well, quite simply put, normally what happens is a lot of “ranking flux”, which is businesses moving up and down, as Google adjusts its algorithm. So, for example, during the roll-out of Google’s Penguin update, a lot of businesses which had “spam links” or low-quality links, that didn’t follow Google’s WebMaster Guidelines, would have received a penalty, which means that businesses with spam links, could have been “de-indexed” removed from Google due to an “algorithmic penalty” or via a manual penalty.

Does Google state, what exactly it take’s into account when deciding on where to rank a business?

There are well over 200 plus ranking factors, these range in terms of how important they are, that’s in determining where your Cardiff business is positioned on Google.

Why it’s now all about quality
 

When it comes to organic SEO, it’s all about quality work now, the work must be of the very highest of quality, otherwise it will work.

Artificial intelligence is now part of the algorithm

It’s a well-known fact, that artificial intelligence (AI) now plays an important part in deciding where a business is ranked, for more information, read about “Google’s RankBrain”, AI and machine learning, and how this is changing seo.

You also have to factor in “machine learning” when you start to think about where the business is ranked

It’s also widely thought by many agencies (not just ours in Cardiff), that machine learning is now used by Google, that’s to decide whether business should be ranked.

Why you shouldn’t concentrate on improving just one ranking factor

If you are only concentrating on just one SEO ranking factor, then it’s likely that you haven’t got a rounded SEO strategy, which might be to the detriment of the business,  a good agency normally concentrates on optimising many ranking factors each month.

How our white hat agency can help

If you run a business here in the heart of Cardiff, or perhaps your company is based further afield?  If you are looking for an agency to help improve your businesses seo ranking factors, then why not get in touch, our team at Adore can improve your SEO.

 

 

 

 

What exactly is Semantic SEO?

Introduction

Semantic SEO is not something that gets talked about all that regularly on various marketing agencies websites, it is therefore something that a lot of business owners will not know about.

However arguably, we think that it is one of the most important aspects of SEO, and once it’s understood, it often shifts some businesses understanding of SEO and how they may implement a marketing strategy.

For example, so many businesses are still stuck in the past, thinking that they have to keep churning out content marketing week after week just to add new work to the companies blog, but here is the thing, if it does not offer any value to the reader, then it could be damaging the businesses marketing.

Instead, what is needed now is work which shows real understanding of what you are writing about, answers the question at hand, but also other questions which are related to that query.

As this article will illustrate, it’s so important now not to keep writing content marketing, just because you feel that you have to keep adding more and more work, to keep up the competition this strategy is dead, that’s if its just focused on “quantity”. Instead in this new era of seo, you must focus on quality instead.

What is needed now is to add work which really helps your customers, which shows that you have high level of expertise, and that the work has had a lot’s time spent on it to create a really solid answer to a question.

So, yes instead of churning out 6 articles a months, of say 500 words, which are rather mediocre at best, you must instead focus on quality. Yes, this is likely to mean more time needs to be spent on the work, more coffee, more tea and more working into the evening, but if the work is done right, well it can be worth it, after all, it’s the reason your reading this! That’s because the work is quality.

What exactly is Semantic SEO?

In a nutshell, it’s about thinking about what your customers ask you on a regular basis, and then providing the best possible answer that you can.

You should aim to be better than the competition’s SEO- you should think about “entities”, and why these are so important when answering a question.

It’s not therefore about writing 500 odd words, with the vague attempt of trying to improve your businesses digital marketing.

Instead, it’s now much more complex than that, as this article will go on to explain, Google now uses something called a “Google’s Knowledge Graph”.

It’s well known, that Google knows how entities interconnect.

So, for example, let’s say that your business sells books online, the Google Knowledge Graph might know the author, in might know which books have been bestsellers, which ones have won prestigious book writing awards, and also it will know the sequence of when the books were published.

So, if somebody was to ask a question about the author, instantly, the search engine that’s Google , will know information about the author, such as the date of birth, the books that they have published, and also other key information, as well as questions which are likely to be asked about the author.

It will also know through “Google’s RankBrain”, which businesses best answer that query, by having for example a low bounce rate, high time on-site, and which was the business that had the last click?

As this article will go onto explain- “Google’s Machine Learning” now plays a huge part of organic SEO.

Google’s organic search results- and the race to provide the best possible answer

It used to be the case, and sometimes still is, that when an seo agency would present what they can offer to a client, they would want to be seen as the seo company that’s offering more.

However, quantity is now not the name of the game at all, it’s all about quality.

So, what do we mean by this?

Well, if you hire an agency on the basis that they are writing say five articles a month, and you dismiss another agency, that’s simply because they are only writing one, then you might be making a mistake.

Because the five articles written by one agency might be “content thin” (low-quality), meaning that they don’t offer any useful advice, to your customers, so you got it! If the works low quality, then this could damage your companies seo.

However, the agency that just offered just one article, and the supporting SEO, might theoretically, offer you better value for money, because the article might be well-written, well researched and it might be written by an expert.  So, the point we are trying to make is this, you should aim to obtain high-quality seo, and not focus on quantity of work, that’s if it comes at the sacrifice of quality.

It is the higher quality seo work which ranks higher now in Google.

Google’s algorithm   

One thing is definitely for sure, that is Google’s algorithm is getting more and more complex, the algorithm and has to be, in order to fight low quality seo, the algorithm also incorporates AI, machine learning and also the Knowledge Graph.

So, you have to make your website the best resource possible, it’s not just about selling products or services anymore, but offering the best customer service, through answering customers queries, the best way you possibly can.

As you can imagine, organic seo is not fast process at all for a lot of companies, especially when “user engagement signals”, such as how long a customer spent on your website is now so important to seo.

Keyword stuffing is definitely finished

If you’re thinking of doing SEO yourself- or you run your own agency, you have to acknowledge this, that is “keyword stuffing” is totally thing of the past. In matter of fact, if you use this, your business is most likely going to incur a penalty.

It used to be the case that some really low quality seo companies used to think that they had to write the same keyword so many times, over and over again, that’s in order to improve the businesses ranking, this is now totally finished as a strategy, and is likely to get your business penalised if you were to use it.

Aim to be the very best

Instead you know have to aim to be the best, better than the competition in answering a query, this is you can imagine not that simple. Yet, this is why so many companies are hiring top quality agencies, like us at Adore in Cardiff, Wales.

Content marketing needs to be more “useful” and focus on “searcher intent”

You need to focus on “searcher intent”, so whether you sell camping gear, classic cars or you sell chocolate brownies online, you have to focus on the questions that your customers are likely to ask on a routine basis, and aim to offer the best possible advice.

Yet you can’t stop there- with SEO you can never get complacent, you have to constantly try to improve your answer, to keep it updated, that’s if the advice was to become obsolete, then you need to make sure that the advice is up to date.

Focus your content marketing on helping your customers

All of your efforts should be focused on helping your customers to find an answer to their query.

What is Google’s Knowledge Graph?

Remember earlier we mentioned “Google’s Knowledge Graph”- well, it’s all about thinking how things are connected.

So, if you sell for example luxury chocolates, why not link to the business that has certified your chocolate as “fair trade”, why not provide a link to the business that has certified it as “organic”, why not link out to a chocolate connoisseur website, that has awarded your business a taste award, this will help you to define your business as a supplier of luxury and artisan chocolates.

Make sure that you capitalise on your company’s expertise

Don’t hire copywriters that haven’t got a clue about your business, or what you can offer as a company, you need to show you have expertise, you need to show that you know what you’re talking about when your writing content marketing.

That’s why so many Welsh businesses hire us, as we will take the time to understand your company.

What are “entities”?

Entities are events, things, places brands, people, they can be anything in matter of fact.

What is entity building?

Entity building is connecting the dots, for example as we mentioned earlier about quality chocolate, your business might be connected to people that certify it as good quality, in terms of it being fair trade, won taste awards, is certified as organic?

Therefore the prestigious awards that you have won, in terms of taste awards, might be a known entity in terms of being awarded a well-known award. The organic certification company might be well-known also around the world, for having high level of rigorous testing to make sure that the food is organic, then also the fair trade body, they might also implement their own procedure to make sure that the food is exactly that fair-trade, as you can see this helps to define your brand, which we would say is an entity.

 

How did Google’s ‘Hummingbird’ update in 2013 change SEO?

Google’s algorithm is most definitely not stupid that’s for sure, and what we mean by this is sometimes people think that they have to put into a sentence exact keywords that they want to rank for over and over again, however often these don’t read naturally at all.

For example, you might run say a web design company, so you keep mentioning “web design” + name of city, so many times, yet this is a sure-fire way, yes you guessed it, of getting a penalty.

Google launched ‘RankBrain’

Machine learning is now definitely part of the algorithm that’s used by Google, so what do we mean by this?

Well machine learning is used to better understand if that query has been answered well or not.

This give you an example, let’s say somebody is looking for a pair of “running trainers”, and over 10,000 people a month search for running trainers, for use on the road.

Now, the machine learning algorithm, says that for business one, the average shopper spends 60 seconds on the website, website two, that is the business that is ranked number two only retains the interest for under 20 seconds.

However, the business that is now ranked number three on Google, that company retains the shopper’s interest for well over five minutes on average, and is often the last clicked on website as well, which could be an indicator that a purchase has been made, so you guessed it, it is likely that business better answers the query, that business might move up.

How is AI changing SEO?

It’s changing S.E.O by constantly using “AI” to evaluate if that question (query) has been answered, and which business best answers the query.

User experience (UX) is now a very important part of Google’s algorithm

A business shouldn’t just aim to improve its “organic SEO”, they have to make the website simple to use and also fast, so that customers can find the products and services they want even quicker.

Why is my business fluctuating in terms of where it ranks on Google?

This is a very common question that a lot of agencies get asked, that is why does a company’s website fluctuate in terms of where it ranks on Google?

Business owners often get especially confused, when the website fluctuates when there are no changes that they have made to the design or to the search engine optimisation.

This article is going to look at some of the factors which can influence where a website ranks, and also what can affect the website moving up or down.

Google algorithm changes

So here’s the most obvious factor which can influence where a website ranks, that is an algorithm change that is made by Google. Now, before we do start, well its definitely worth mentioning there’s a lot of different reasons which can influence and therefore cause changes as to where a business ranks, but lets look at some of the more common reasons.

Now for those that know a thing or two about search engine optimisation, they will know that Google employs a lot of people that are constantly working on improving the algorithm, and also roll out algorithm changes.

So, for those that think that Google’s algorithm stays the same for long periods of time, well they would be wrong. The truth is Google is thought to make a lot of changes to its algorithm every single year, some agencies even go as far to say hundreds of various of rollouts to Google’s algorithm are made every year.

Now, don’t get us wrong, some are more important than others, for example, some seriously large updates were the Googe Hummingbird update and The Google Panda update, but even though they were large updates, there’s hundreds of others.

The vast majority of businesses that we work for, pay us to improve their SEO for Google’s organic results, you have to bear in mind that where a business is ranked on Google is solely dependent therefore on Google’s algorithm, therefore if a change occurs, the business can change in terms of where it ranks.

Sure, it’s the agencies job to improve the “ranking factors” so that when Googlebot indexes the work, Google’s very clever algorithm can make a decision in terms of where the business should rank. However, with that point made, what we are trying to get across here is, Google’s algorithm is also going through changes, so when an update is rolled out, its entirely possible that a business will shift up the SERP’s (Search Engine Results Pages) or move back down.  

So, for example, let’s say a major algorithm update is rolled out such as the “Google Penguin update”, now if the business had a lot of spam links, that is a low-quality backlinks, then it was entirely possible and still is today, the business will drastically change where it ranks. In some instances, when a business doesn’t follow Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, well, the whole website could be subject to a “Google Manual Action” or a “Google Penalty” that’s dished out by its algorithm, in this case, its not a matter of the business moving a few positions on Google, nope, it could be removed fully in some cases!

Here’s the thing, Google only wants to supply the best quality answer to any query, so what all business owners need to understand is, if there are competitors that are simply better at answering the query, then it’s entirely possible that the website will shift where it change it ranks. This is why organic seo is a continuous process.

So, if a rival business improves its seo to a better standard than another business, then it can overtake that other businesses, this in itself is a major cause for why businesses move up or down on Google.

The website is deemed less relevant

Let’s say that you sell online cooking kits, that’s for people to make Mexican food while following a set recipe.

Let’s say that your business specialises in Mexican food, but, what might occur is that another business that also sells cooking kits, that becomes a better resource for cooking Mexican cuisine and starts to climb higher on Google.

Therefore, this might be because their business appears to be offering better information, and it might be getting more engagement, for example a lower bounce rate and more people reading through the various recipes, that business might quickly replace the one that is ranking higher.

Therefore, when somebody is making a query about trying to find somewhere that sells cooking kits for Mexican food, that business might be ranked higher, simply because some or all of the following might be stronger than a lot of other businesses:

·        The content marketing is better

·        The business has better engagement, lower bounce rate, customers are spending longer on the site

·        The information, for example how to cook Mexican food is better, so the business has a much stronger backlink profile.

Not all ranking factors are visible

It’s a common question that we are asked here at our agency, that is that the business seems to be updating their website more often than a competitor, and trying to improve the SEO, but the business is still struggling to understand why it is not ranking higher?

These questions normally get asked initially when a business contacts us, we will explain that with ranking factors, some are not visible on the website, for example backlinks are links that lead to a page or a post on the website, for example they may point to the homepage.

However, by just visiting a website, it isn’t apparent without the necessary SEO tools, to know how many backlinks are pointing to a page. So, therefore, yes some of the SEO work is visible, for example a 10,000 word article, that’s a piece of evergreen content marketing.

However, backlinks, without an SEO tool, or using say Google’s Search Console, you wouldn’t know how many links a company has.

Google’s RankBrain

This is something else that business owners need to think about, that is it’s not just about content marketing, and on-site SEO, it’s also about “engagement signals”.

For example, how long is a shopper spending on your website? How high is your “bounce rate” on each of the pages? How many products is a shopper looking at?

A business that has much higher engagement, is arguably better answering that query, that’s because the shopper is spending longer on that company’s website, so an agency should therefore also work hard to improve engagement signals.

Worst-case scenario, the business has incurred a penalty

Okay we hat to throw this into the mix as well, that is a business might change where it ranks, because the company has flouted the rules, it has therefore failed to adhere to the SEO rules and could have incurred a penalty, and therefore been removed from Google.

Whether your company is located here in Cardiff, and is implementing all of the SEO work yourself, or you employ one of the largest digital marketing agencies on the whole planet to do the SEO tasks for you, all companies, irrespective of company size, should follow what is called “Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

 

 

How do we even begin to start to climb the ranks on Google?

There are so many well-written articles online, that talk about the various areas of SEO, ranging from how to build do-follow backlinks, through to how a “well-written meta description” can help to improve a business’s click through rate (CTR).

However, we think, that it is something of a rarity to have an article which helps the business at the very start the seo journey, that’s to say that doesn’t talk about all of the different ways to optimise a website in isolation of one another, but simply talks about how a business can even begin start to climb the ranks on Google. Do believe us when we say this, regardless of what type of business you run, if you’re a start-up business, with a new website, well the process of climbing Google’s ranks, also commonly referred to as the SERP’s, well it can be a long one, so order the espresso machine now!

That’s because, if you’ve got a brand-new website, and the main way that you wish to promote your company is using what’s referred to as “organic SEO”, then you have to also be realistic.

So, what do we mean when we use the word “realistic” well, when you first send your website for indexing, the website is unlikely to surface on page 1 of Google, it’s much more likely to enter on page 11 of Google’s SERP’s, and that’s when the uphill struggle begins to get your business to climb the ranks.

You therefore have to be realistic of whether a business has the marketing budget to move a website from say page 10 of Google, where it might first surface in the SERP’s, to where it needs to be, as it’s a long road, and often many businesses with strong seo need to beaten.

But here’s the thing, that a lot of businesses forget, sometimes to even get on page 10 needs a lot of work because the competition might be truly massive.

Let’s say for example you are an online retailer of running trainers, that is you don’t manufacturer the trainers yourself you simply retail shoes which are made by many different brands. Yet here’s the thing, there are thousands of stockists that retail this same brand of trainer, so how are you going to get your business onto the first page of Google for that brand of trainer?

Well, the simple answer is it’s not going to be easy, in reality it’s likely to be extremely difficult to get on the first page of Google’s organic results, that’s because when your website is first indexed by Googlebot, well its likely to surface on a low-page, perhaps page 11, therefore often a lot of work is needed to push the page up the ranks.

This is especially so when you factor in what many agencies refer to as “Google’s Sandbox Period”.

So within this article, what we’re going to cover is when we as an seo company are presented with a brand-new website, that either we’ve created or another web developer has, we are going to start a look at the factors (ranking factors) that we going to look for, to even start the SEO process.

Now for some businesses we know that it’s realistically going to take sometimes over six months, or it might take over 12 months the business to even get on the first page of Google’s results, so we know that the foundations must be solid right from the start of the process of optimisation, and now we’re going to talk about here in some detail some of the factors that our SEO consultants look for to make sure that we get a good foundation, so that from that foundation we can build the rest of the SEO up from.

Therefore, rather than writing a rather long-winded article on say how to write anchor text, this article is going to instead explore the process that our team uses to start planning on how we start going about to implement seo for our clients, and some of the tasks that we complete.


Keywords

Now this is something that your marketing company is likely to mention a lot at the start of the process, that is keywords, and why great deals of time should be spent working out which ones you are going to target.

Therefore, our teams often start by making a nice cup of tea, and then start quickly thinking of keywords to optimise the website for, and this needs to be deliberated over and thought about for a great deal of time. The keywords shouldn’t be so difficult its next to impossible to deliver on with the marketing budget that’s presented, neither should the targets be set that they are so easy, that the keywords have no search volume, and therefore present no value to the customer.

So therefore, we often crank up the coffee machine to its strongest setting (double-espresso mode), then we sit down with our marketing team, and start thinking about which keywords to target for our new client.

Now the inexperienced will simply comment that you should go after the most obvious keywords, so for example if you sell car waxes and polishes, you should simply optimise the whole website the “car wax”- however as any good seo company will note, it’s not often as simple and straightforward as this, and we shall explain why.

Why you must evaluate how hard it is to target a keyword or group of keywords

You might be a new business, that manufacturing your own car waxes say in Cardiff, and you want to sell these directly to the customer via your website.

So far, so good, SO it would seem logical just to optimise the website for car waxes, however what you might quickly find is that the competition for this is very strong, especially if you are implementing Global SEO. Not only will there likely to be hundreds of competitors, the seo is likely to be completed to a very high standard, for example they may have been investing in organic SEO, through a respected agency, which delivers quality work might have done so for the last six years let’s say. So, the point we are trying to make is this, the up hill struggle, the volume of work needed to go after that keyword, to the point where you reach page one on Google, well to put it rather bluntly, the business may not have the financial reserves for it.

They may therefore run out of marketing budget, because the competition have been investing for longer, and may have deeper pockets.

So, what you have to be realistic about is can you beat that standard set by your direct competitors?

Be sensible, set achievable goals, as otherwise the marketing strategy is set to fail.

So you have to be sensible about what your marketing budget can achieve, also you should weigh up with your chosen seo agency, if you were to go after that keyword, so for example car wax, have you got the budget to ensure that you can pursue that until it reaches the first page? For example, if the agency estimates that it will take them 10 months, to get the keyword “car wax” on the first page, have you got as a business the financial resources to do this? As when the website is climbing Google’s SERP’s lets say from page 10 to page 8 to page 6, the website may not be generating any income via its organic serps, so have you got the ability to keep paying while improvements are made?

Because here is the nuts and bolts of the situation, you might have a group of companies in the organic results, on the first page, which have invested over 1 million each making sure that their website is a leading resource in selling all manner of car accessories.

So if another company thinks that it can get on the first page for say 10,000 pounds, then is this likely to be unrealistic, and probably won’t be achievable , as going after a keyword, such as “car waxes”, may well be too competitive and the company may run out of its marketing budget before it is even sold its first tin of wax!

Don’t pick a keyword that has a huge amount of competition

What you don’t want to do, is to pick a keyword that has a huge amount of competition, and that you don’t have the marketing budget to rival. If you were to do this, you are simply biting off more than you can chew and by that we mean that you might be up against businesses, which have heavily invested in SEO for prolonged periods of time, they might have done this for over 10 years, they might have paid a really good respected agency like ours, so the work is of a really good standard as well. So to say that you can beat there seo efforts quickly, often will not happen.

What exactly are long tail keywords and why do businesses target these?

If you are just starting your company say here in South Wales, you have two think about ways where you can get more organic visitors to your company website, but, not to go after words and phrases that are too difficult, and are going to take too long to achieve, or require too much investment, which we have covered in great detail above.

So, for example, let’s say that you sell used cars, yet your business is based in a really large city, and within that area there are thousands of other car dealers. Some are established names, and will therefore be extremely hard to beat.

You will have to think about with your marketing agency which keywords should be the priority, in terms of targeting and which ones are simply too difficult to achieve in the short term.

So, for example, you might find that targeting used cars, or car dealerships is simply too difficult, even if the city name is mentioned within the search query.

So, you may go after what agencies refer to as “long-tail keywords” instead, that is queries which are a bit longer, have a much lesser search volume on Google, (Google Search Console) but are still worth targeting, quite simply because they can bring in organic visitors, which the marketing agency might deem to have purchasing intent. Which means, that although the volume of visitors is likely to be less, these shoppers still are shopping for the products and the services that you sell.

So for example, you might add car brand + used cars, you might add car brand plus car dealerships or you might go for a much longer tail keywords such as “used-car dealers that offer hire purchase agreements.

Now, although these might have a much lesser search volume, they are still worth going after as they might help to draw in customers.

Now, you might well be thinking, why go after keywords which have a lower search volume and a simple answer to that question is, they are often easier to get the business to rank for, and by that we mean that for a more competitive term, such as car dealers, it might take over a year to get the business to rank for that term, however for a term such as car dealers plus a brand of calm that is mentioned, it might take much less time it might take for example 6 months.

 

What is content marketing?

So, you will see how we’ve talked about keywords, that’s prior to us mentioning content marketing, and that’s with good reason, that’s because your agency should have picked which keywords that they are going to target before the start writing any text.

Now, you might not know what content marketing is, well, quite simply put its mostly the written work that is added to your website, but it could also include infographics, which you might have also added as well as let’s say a YouTube video which you might have embedded into the page.

So, what’s a good example of content marketing?

Well, exactly what you are reading at the moment, that is it should be written text, which offers useful advice, which is written by an expert.

Now, because our company has over 10 years’ experience, we believe this renders us as experts, we also aim to offer the most useful SEO advice that we can.

So, the point that we are trying to make is this, you shouldn’t just focus solely on trying to improve your company’s SEO, what you should do is aim to offer advice, now this might seem counterintuitive, if your business is charging for advice.

So, for example let’s say that you are an architect, a solicitor or let’s say a mortgage adviser, you might be thinking why would we give away free advice on our company website, when we charge by the hour?

Well, here’s the thing, if you want your business to rank on the first page of Google, for let’s say mortgage adviser plus the name of the city which you are based, you are going to have to prove that your company website is the most relevant for that query, that offers the best advice, that it is a place where people who want mortgage advice go to.

Now it is very unlikely, if not impossible that the business is going to rank on Google’s first page, unless it has well written text.

So, for example is going to need to offer information about your business and a lot of businesses give away useful advice for free, because not only will it help the company’s customers but they are also wanting to make their website relevant and also the source for good quality information.

So, you might be thinking well, how will Google know if I add good quality content marketing?

Well, the simple answer is this Google’s algorithm, will use “Googlebot” to “crawl and index” the work, it will then use Google’s Knowledge Graph, to see how factual the written information is, it will also use AI, that is artificial intelligence, and also computer learning, to manage how engaged a shopper is with the website.

So, by this we mean, how high is the bounce rate, and also is the website the last one the shopper clicks on, also how long does the average shopper spend on the website.

Now let’s look at each one individually, if you were to walk into a shop and you see that it does in stock what you want, are likely to leave straightaway, and make your way to the exit, this is the same for a company website, and this means that is likely to have a high bounce rate, which can sometimes be negative to the businesses SEO.

Equally, if you are the last clicked website for that query, then is likely that you have satisfied what the shopper wanted.

So, for example if somebody is looking to purchase a tennis racket, and the visits 10 websites, but you are the 10th website that they have clicked on, and they click no more businesses, then is likely that they’ve made a purchase from you or found what they were looking for, because they haven’t gone to any other retailers, so as a business you should aim to be the last business they visit, as this is an indicator that sale might have been made.

Speed

it’s important that no matter what your business sells, whether it be chocolate brownies to be delivered by post, we sell car insurance, we your business sells classic cars, it’s important that your website is fast.

If the website is not quick to load, then this likely that you are going to have a high bounce rate, as you have to put yourself in your customers shoes, if they can’t purchase will be what quickly, and they are likely to leave your business for another company.

Engagement

It’s difficult to monitor engagement, with the website this brand-new, it is likely that your business will be say on page 10 of Google. This basically means that nobody is going to find your business easily, this means being that lowdown on Google is likely to mean that there is no engagement.

However, as you start to get engagement, you should monitor whether the bounce rate is high is low, you should see how long somebody spending on your website and how many pages that they visit.

On page SEO

there are a lot of things that you can do to improve the businesses on page SEO, however you must make sure that they are white hat.

Your agency may therefore improve the page, by adding well written the meta titles met and meta descriptions, it might improve how fast your website is, it might also use internal links in between the content marketing that you write.

Are many ways to improve the on-site SEO, this should be done by a white hat agency.

Backlinks

the final chapter that we would like to talk about backlinks, they are arguably thought by many digital marketing agencies to be one of the most important ranking factors.

You may have noticed that at the start of this article we were talking about that Google takes into account well over 200 different ranking factors. Yet what you need to remember is, as a business, was an agency optimising a website, is that these ranking factors are all weighted differently.

For example, you might rewrite every meta description on an e-commerce website, and that might mean rewriting over 1000 product descriptions, which is obviously a lot of work, yet once you’ve done this, you may notice with the SEO tools that you use that the organic traffic does increase by that much.

However, on the other hand, if you were to have incoming thousands of really good quality relevant backlinks which is being can built using white hat methods throughout the whole process, and this might severely jump where your business ranks on Google.

The point we are trying to make therefore is that some ranking factors are worth a lot more than some others, where some may make no difference whatsoever to weigh your business ranks, others can have a dramatic effect, yes regardless of this, time must be taken to make sure that you do this the right way, and the right way is using white hat methods.

The road is long, do not rush it

as a business owner, or a manager within a marketing team, you’re going to want to get your business is high on Google as possible, and you may want to do this in a short period of time, however he is the truth of the matter, and that is it is often a very slow journey.

Regardless of what a pushy sales executive might tell you at some companies, that it can be a fast process, trust us when we say it is often not a quick process by any stretch of the imagination.

Often the process is slow, and how fast you move forward depends on quality of the SEO as well as how strong your competitors are.

Picture this just for a second, imagine your competitors SEO like you would a brick wall, they have had the time to slowly build their wall is tall and the strong as they possibly can, therefore making it hard for any competitor like yourself to scale it.

You therefore need to keep this in mind, the businesses which turnover millions per year or doing well through the SEO not going to want new companies to infiltrate onto the first page and to take their advantage away from the. This is why SEO is often a long journey, requires patience and an agency with great skill in order to do the work.

Therefore, the wall that you need to scale is often vast and quite daunting, yet there are no shortcuts, you will find companies that are willing to bulldoze their way through, the algorithms are now so clever that Google uses that there are no ways to accelerate the process, if methods are used which are not condoned, that’s the say they are not approved by Google, then it’s more than likely that the algorithm or a manual penalty will be applied on the website.

This simply means that the website can be fully removed or demoted on Google, this is the last thing you want, as it can mean that your business is fully removed in some instances.

Therefore, what is needed is an agency which has a huge skill set and understands Google’s algorithm, and fully explains the challenges that lay ahead, they should honestly and accurately tell you how much of a challenge it will be, and which have your competitors pose the biggest problem in terms of trying to overtake them online.

Organic SEO is therefore not for every business, as often they will not have the financial resources to pay for this type of digital marketing, however for those that do, the partner with the right agencies, which offer top quality work can see the fruit from their labour.

Here is a door, we are very much about offering really good quality work, we don’t believe in cutting corners, and have some of the most talented SEO professionals in Cardiff working for us.

If you therefore would like a quote for web design organic SEO then why not give our business today

 

 

 

What are internal links? Why do SEO agencies use them?

Introduction

Whether you a multi-national PLC company with thousands of staff, or you’re a start-up restaurant, that’s opened its first premises here in the rather great city of Cardiff, you most probably want to know a thing of two about how to improve your onsite seo.

Afterall, it doesn’t matter if you run a restaurant, and need more diners, or you run a business that makes a product, and then exports it across the entire globe, you’re going to need more often than not a good website.

A website which doesn’t just advertise the products, or the services you offer, but also rises to the top of Google’s SERP’s- all this means is this, you want your company to rank high on Google for relevant terms.

So for example, if you manufacturer and retail directly to public, vacuum hoovers, well, your going to want to be on the first page of Google for this, if you sell craft coffee, and you sell this not to the public, but the trader, well, your going to want to find various seo agencies which can optimise the website for say “trade coffee suppliers”- as you want to sell in bulk, so you might be thinking, well, what’s the point that we are trying to make here?

Well, it’s a simple one, whatever you sell, you need to hire a good seo agency, or to do this work yourself, but often an agency is hired, then you need to make sure through offsite seo, and onsite seo, that the “ranking factors” are improved, that they are made stronger, so that your business, whether its in Cardiff, or in another part of Wales, that your website can climb the ranks, so it can get on the first page of Google in the SERP’s, and so that you can generate more business.

What are internal links?

Okay, so lets say your having a cup of tea with your marketing company, and you’ve hired them to improve your seo, but here’s the thing, do you think that there’s just a few leavers that the agency can pull to improve your seo?

Nope, there’s hundreds.

And because each “ranking factor” which Google includes in its algorithm, is complex, that’s why agencies like ours split each ranking factor normally into its own blog post, because each one, out of the hundreds needs its own blog post, and to be explained fully, as there’s a right way to implementing organic seo and there’s a right way.

 

Why are internal links important?

Well, as you might have gathered, seo companies, do spend a lot of time, carrying out keyword research, then with this, they then start to optimise the companies onsite seo, this normally means drinking a lot of coffee, as often, as part of the work thousands, and thousands, and thousands of words need to be written, as part of writing the companies content marketing, now with that said, normally the written work, well it will sometimes overlap.

So, lets give you an example, lets say that you sell bikes, you sell mountain bikes, electric bikes, and you sell fold-up bikes, ideal for when you hop on say a train, now if your writing an article, let’s say reviewing 10 new mountain bikes, that have been launched in 2021, well, one of those bikes might just be electric, and it might have been a model of bike that you’ve already reviewed, lets say on a blog post 3 months ago.

So, what you can do, is in your latest blog post, you could link to it, now this is called an “internal links”.

And you’re probably thinking, well why? If I have the shopper on the website, and there happy drinking a cup of tea, reading our review of the top 10 mountain bikes of 2021, well, why offer a link to another part of the website, that has a long review, and say a review via you talking on YouTube, of a electric bike?

Well, for two reasons really, here’s the first, GoogleBot, that’s like a piece of automated code, which Google uses, it’s job is to “crawl and index” the web, now, what does that even mean?

Well, most companies websites don’t stay the same for long, a lot of the time, they hire seo agencies, like ours to do work, on a monthly basis, so this means adding new work, improving the onsite seo, and much more. So, how does Google, and its algorithm, well, how does it know about this new work? How will Google’s algorithm know lets say that for a lawyer we work for, that we have just added a new job post, that details exactly the solicitor that we are requiring in the Cardiff area, and we’ve just added that new blog post, and we’ve also added it the “vacancies” section of the website, how will Google know we’ve added this?

Well, via Googlebot, that’s because Googlebot uses links, whether they be external backlinks, or internal backlinks, to follow the link, to see if its new work, if it is, it works out whether the work is quality, in that whether it should be added to Google’s index or not, also, if the works quality, what does Google’s algorithm make of it? Is it so good, that it enhances the seo, so that the business should move up Google’s ranks? Or is the work rubbish quality, it’s been written by a low-quality agency, and it doesn’t follow white hat methods, so should Google’s algorithm move the website down?

What exactly is Googlebot?

GoogleBot is therefore a bot, that’s used by Google, its purpose is to discover new work. So, for example, lets say you run a car dealership, and you’ve started stocking a new brand of car, you want to make sure, that when someone is on Google, and there looking for that brand locally, that your business appears in the SERP’s as a retailer of that brand of car, so your hire seo companies to do this for you.

Now part of the work that they might do, is to add meta titles, meta descriptions, to add new content marketing, for example in the form of a review of that car, with an embedded YouTube video, of a car sales person walking around the car, telling the listener of the benefits of owning that car, and then to help improve the organic seo a bit more, the digital marketing agency has written up more details, such as the MPG of the car, its safety features and also the optional extras such as alloy wheels.

So, the whole point of this work, that the seo company is doing, is to get the company to rank locally on Google for that car brand, and to make it clear the car dealership stocks that car.

So, lets say on a cold winter’s day, lets say on a Monday morning the boss of the car dealership says yes, that’s good work, add it to the website, so how will Google know you’ve done this SEO work?

Well, it may take a while, but sooner or later, its likely Googlebot will “crawl and index” the work, now how is that done, well its done by following backlinks, whether they are internal backlinks, or external backlinks, and to follow them, so that the page can be indexed, the seo work, that the agency has done can be evaluated by Google’s algorithm, simply meaning, how good are the ranking factors for that page? For example, does the page have good quality do-follow backlinks? For example, the car manufacturer may well have appointed your car dealership in Cardiff, as say the only authorised dealer in the area, that’s to say, the manufacturer may have stated your company on their international website, provided a do-follow backlink, from the car manufacturers site to yours, which may well be a really high-quality link, which may well be picked up by Google’s algorithm and therefore this can improve your companies seo.    

Why would a company want to lower its bounce rate?

Lets say that you hire an agency and they manage to get 10,000 organic visitors to your websites- that’s great right? Well, not if the bounce rate in Google Analytics is 99%, which simply means that percentage is leaving the businesses website, after visiting the first page.

Why would a company, want to improve its time on site?

Okay, so let’s say you run a department store, on a high street in say Cardiff, yet you notice, that shoppers spend on average less that 60 seconds in the store, you would wonder why right? Well, this is no different when you hire a marketing company, they should aim to keep shoppers on your e-commerce website for as long as possible.

What are engagement metrics?

Engagement metrics are bounce rates and many other signals, your seo companies, should aim to improve these.

Why must we follow Google’s WebMaster Guidelines?

It doesn’t matter whether you hire an agency to help build just backlinks, or you hire a copywriter, or the whole SEO team at one of the U.K’s largest digital marketing agencies- what the agency must do, always is follow Google’s WebMaster Guidelines, the work must therefore be top-quality.

Can be helpful to your customers

An internal link on your company’s website can be useful, for example let’s say that you sell chocolate, you may well be talking in a blog post about the luxury organic chocolate you now sell, so you may link from the blog post to that page.

Why good website design and organic SEO go hand in hand

You might wish to hire a company that has web designers and seo consultants which are working for the same company, that’s why so many businesses in Wales hire us, as we have link builders, seo experts, website designers all under one roof.

How our agency can help?

If your business needs help to improve its Cardiff SEO, then why not call us?

 

What are Google’s Core Web Vitals?

Okay, so its fair to say that Google improves its algorithm on a very regular basis, so, seo agencies up and down the land should know that potentially hundreds of updates are rolled out every year.

These are sometimes referred to as algorithm updates, which, may roll-out, and then roll-back, sometimes in-between causing what SEO’s call “ranking flux”.

Then once the dust has settled, some businesses will have moved up, some down, its then up to the really good agencies to grab a really strong espresso, and start figuring out what has caused the change, which ranking factors are deemed more important?

Now, sometimes it takes agencies many weeks to work this out, as often different business sectors are impacted differently, yet this is how seo agencies work out, if a ranking factor has grown importance or not.

And such an update to Google’s algorithm is the “Google Core Web Vitals”– and as this article will explain, its mostly down to how you can improve your company’s website, so it offers a better user experience.

A bit like when a business owns a department store, how can they improve the shopping experience, so that the customer finds what they want, so that the store looks better, so that the shop offers a better experience you will want to return to, and the ultimate objective is to make more sales, sell more goods, and improve the brand awareness.

Well, this is the same when it comes to improving your companies organic seo, you could be writing content marketing until you drop off your chair of exhaustion, if simply put, the websites slow, the page doesn’t stabilise all that quickly, and its difficult to press a button you want, because of a poor design, well, the bounce rates likely to be super high, machine learning and AI technology, such as Google’s RankBrain, well, that’s likely to spot, you know what, that business is not offering the best user experience, otherwise, that bounce rate wouldn’t be 90%, when on the first page of the SERP’s the average bounce rate is only 20%, so quickly that site gets flagged, as having a rather high bounce rate.      

User experience

So, if we had to summarise here at this agency what is the main theme of the Google Web Core Vitals update, we would say it’s about user experience.

Is the website fast, is it easy to use, once the page has loaded, is it stable. So, just for a second, put yourself in your customers shoes, and let’s say you sell running trainers, your whole business is focused on selling trainers made by leading suppliers.

Now, let’s say one website is fast, it loads on a smartphone fast, its also very stable, so it can load 50 pairs of trainers, then almost instantly the shopper can click on the trainer they want to know more about- that’s an example of good user experience, as the business has invested in good quality hosting, and had the entire website built so its centres around useability.

Lets take an example of a business that gets it wrong, for example, too many trainers load at once, the design is poor, so its slow to load, the hosting is unreliable so its also slow, plus, once loaded, the page jumps, and moves as more elements get added, causing someone who’s say on a moving train, looking to purchase a pair of running trainers to click on the wrong pair, then its slow to get back to the other trainers, this is an example of poor user experience, which can result in a higher bounce rate, which will also be picked up by Google’s Web Core Vital update, and AI, such as Google’s RankBrain, which may spot that the site has a high bounce rate, plus, the average shopper doesn’t go beyond the first page, or second page, which is not a good sign, as another business, lets say a direct competitor, they have a high-average time spent on the website, by each shopper, the bounce rate is low, plus, the average customer visits over 10 pages, which means, that the shopper, is spending a while browsing the trainers, which is a sign that there is high engagement, and that the website is helping the shopper.

A Google Ranking Factor

The Google Web Core Vitals, is a Google ranking factor, which means that Google’s algorithm and AI will use the information to work out where a company should rank, yet, as any good digital marketing agency will also state, this is not the only ranking factor which Google uses to work out where your website should rank, nope, in matter of fact, most agencies, ours included, believes that there are over 200 different ranking factors.

So, what does this mean?

Well, this is why companies hire SEO agencies on a monthly basis, as there’s often so much SEO work that needs doing, your going to need a respected, white hat, quality agency, like Adore, to do the work.

As there’s so many different ranking factors, from anchor text, through to “Google’s Web Core Vitals”, there’s often a lot of work for your SEO team to be working on.

Must make your company’s website is fast and stable

So, if you were to take away any tips on what this Google update is all about is this, you must make your company website so its well-designed, so that its super-fast, and that its stable.

Of course, it goes without saying, yes, the seo work must be good quality also.

Is your company website mobile friendly?

Your company website should be “mobile friendly”.

LCP-How fast does each page load?

Whichever seo agencies that your company hires, or web developers, you should aim to make your companies website as fast as possible.

This means that your agency may use Google’s tool to test speed. You may therefore use Google’s Page Speed Insights

How fast does the page become stable?

You should also test how long does it take to make each page stable?

 

Google Analytics- why we think it’s an essential SEO tool

 

Introduction

In this article we will discuss:

  • What is organic traffic?
  • How using Google Analytics can help you to see if the traffic is organic traffic, direct traffic or traffic coming from social media, such as Facebook advertisements
  • Why your business should monitor its bounce rate
  • When shoppers use your website are they using mobile device or desktop- Google Analytics can tell you this

So, your brand-new website has been live for quite a while, and although you’re over the moon with the design, you think its simply ace, you don’t know how well the websites doing.

That’s to say, sure the phones not ringing off the hook, and there isn’t much in the way of orders, however with that said, you did know, that by trying to improve your companies organic seo, that it was going to take a lot of time.

Yet, with that said, you still need to benchmark progress, for example, in January it be nice to compare the number of shoppers with February and then March-right?

Exactly, somebody who’s aiming to lose weight, well, they would rarely do it without having a set of scales, as otherwise, how would they know there losing weight each week?

So, this is the same with SEO, you’re going to want to know if things are improving, if you’re gaining more visitors, and this is where Google Analytics is simply a fantastic SEO tool, one that’s reliable, and used by everyone from SEO agencies which have say 100 staff, through to a sole trader business owner.

What is Google Analytics?

So, what is Google Analytics? Well, it’s a tool, that can connect to your website, and then start providing you with important stats, for example, what percentage of visitors are using a desktop, how many are using a mobile device, how many are on tablet.

So, for example, let’s say you sell coffee, and Google Analytics tells you that over 90% of your shoppers come via a smartphone, you may therefore work with your web developers so that you improve the design further, perhaps using what web designers refer to as “A/B testing” to try and improve the design.

So, what is Google Analytics, well its kind of what a dashboard is to a car, it’s a way of seeing stats that relate to your website, such as number of organic visitors, new vs returning visitors, bounce rates, location, how long the average shopper spends on your site.

Why do we think it’s a must?

Well, whether you’re running a sole-trader business, or a really large company, Google Analytics tell you really important information

Such as:

Number of organic visitors:

If you’re sipping away on hundreds of strong coffees and burning the midnight oil, trying to get your business to rank higher on Google, well, you’re obviously going to want to know whether each week whether you’re gaining more organic visitors or not?

For example, let’s say you’ve earned a really good quality backlink, you’re a lawyer, and you’ve won a prestigious award, and the company that issues the award, well they have provided a detailed blog post about you, what your solicitors practice offers, and also, they’ve stuck a do-follow backlink back to your site, which, could help to improve where your site ranks, that’s if the backlink is good quality, and yes, of course follow’s Google’s WebMaster Guidelines.

Let’s presume it does, well, it could mean that you see an increase of over 100 visitors follow the link, and where can you see an increase in your organic visitors’ numbers? Well, through Google Analytics, so the tool is most often used at our agency to see if organic visitor numbers are increasing, and also then seeing the bounce rate, and also how long that shopper then spends on the website.

Is Google Analytics easy to use?

Yes, its really easy to use, even if you haven’t got much experience with SEO terms, its still very useful, for example the line graphs show easily how the site is doing, for example, you may set the time range for the last 6 months, then instantly you can see, is the volume of organic traffic increasing?

Is it hard to obtain?

No, setting up a Google Analytics account is very easy, we would recommend that its set up as soon as your website is designed, so you might want to ask your web designer to do this work for you.

Is it just meant for SEO agencies?

Most definitely not, although its true, an seo agency like ours will spend a great deal of time using the tool, a lot of businesses use this tool, that’s from say a sole trader business, lets say a cake maker, through to a company that employs thousands of staff, so Google Analytics is widely used, by many different businesses.

Acquisition

If you’re paying an agency to improve your seo, well, you’re going to want to know where your visitors are coming from, for example, are they coming from your company’s social media posts, are they coming direct, because lets say you have your business address written on the side of your companies vans, or are they coming via your organic SEO.

So, why Google Analytics is so super useful is, as the business owner, you can see how many visitors are coming from each source.

Organic traffic

When you hire various seo companies, such as an agency like Adore, well, our business is centred around helping companies to improve their organic seo, now sure there’s a million and one tools that can be used to see how many organic visitors a company website is getting, however, we here at this agency use Google Analytics, as we think this is a reliable source to see how many organic visitors our clients are getting.

Audience- mobile, desktop, tablet

Okay, so on what devices are shoppers accessing your company website?

For example, are they using a desktop, mobile or tablet? Now, this is important, that’s because, let’s say you’re a lawyer, and over 90% of traffic is via desktop, yet the bounce rate on a smartphone is high- you must ask well, why is that?

Why is the bounce rate on a smartphone so high? And could the design be improved, so what you might find is the main menu, well, its not easy to use, and on some smartphones, well, you might find that it doesn’t work properly at all! For example, the main menu extends beyond the screen, so this could be a reason for why the bounce rate is so high.

So, then it’s a matter of improving the design, you may find after some design improvements, that the bounce rate on smartphones decreases.

Geo

Okay, so let’s say you sell your products online, and your manufacturer and retail lawn mowers online, yet you only deliver throughout mainland U.K.

So, if when you log into your Google Analytics account and see that the number of organic visitors is all over the world, well this might not be what you want, as you don’t deliver your products outside of the U.K, therefore the SEO agencies will need to focus on building more organic traffic in the U.K, as this is where you sell your lawnmowers.

It’s very useful

As you can see Google Analytics is very useful, its quick to set-up, and if you don’t know how to add the Google Analytics Verification Code, your web designer should.

Then when you add work to your site, so let’s say you write a new blog post, because you’ve just launched a new electric lawn mower, you can see how many organic visitors the article is getting.
Should help you when aiming to improve your businesses organic SEO

So whether you’re an SEO consultant at the top of your game, working from a capital city here in the U.K working for major PLC companies, you most likely use Google Analytics, or on the other hand, whether you’re a start-up business, making chocolate brownies from your kitchen, and you’ve just built a website yourself, a wide range of businesses, SEO agencies, use Google Analytics, that’s because the data can help you when aiming to improve your seo

A guide on how to use Google Search Console

Introduction

Okay, so in business there’s a million and one things to check on daily, staff that may appear at your desk with a question, your phone might seem to buzz every two seconds with a new e-mail that requires your attention, not to mention the calendar which sets out a row of meetings, and things that need sorting in your business.

So, normally, with that said, a business owner wont normally has the time to checking on a tool that’s designed to inform them of the performance of their website, you might say, well that’s the seo agencies job, that’s what I am paying them for.

Well, lets put that in a different perspective just for a second, for some businesses here in Wales, the main way that they draw in business is via their website, so its not just say another form of marketing, its mission critical that things are running right.

Now, with that in mind, if you 100% trust your appointed SEO company then sure, you may outsource the management completely to them, but for a lot of businesses, they want to keep an eye on how their website is doing, whether that’s every day, week or once a month, and Google Search Console is great for that purpose.

In a nutshell therefore, this tool can tell you the following:

-Where your websites ranking for certain words (Performance tab, average position information)

-What some of the backlinks are that lead to various pages on your company’s website

-Which queries people are typing to find your website

-Number of impressions for each keyword

-If Google has places any “manual actions” on your site

Why use Google Search Console?

Google Search Console, is not like some SEO tools which are complicated, difficult to use, and just sometimes show “vanity metrics”

No, Google Search Console, is what a dashboard is to a car, it tells you the essential information that you need to know, which allows you to adjust your marketing strategy.

So, for example, lets say the business has started to target a new keyword, let’s say “organic chocolate” now, your going to want to know, where you rank for this term now, is it improving month on month, are you getting closer to the number 1 spot on Google?

And the “Performance” tab on Google Search Console can provide you with this information.

Is it worth using even though I have paid for other SEO tools?

Yes, even though our marketing agency does use other seo tools, we use Google Search Console as our main tool, that we use to see how well a business organic seo is improving.

The main reason for this is that the data comes from Google, we therefore know that the data is reliable, its accurate, and therefore we as an agency can build marketing strategies around this, for example, once one keyword “organic chocolate” is number 1, we can then focus our attention on say “fair-trade chocolate”, the business may rank number 50 at the moment for “fair trade chocolate” in Google Search Console performance tab, now as the client wants to rank on the first page of Google’s results for that, we know we have some work to do, we therefore need a marketing strategy, we can then start to see how strong are the competitors for  this, what seo are they doing, how can we make ours better.

What information can Google Search Console offer me that is valuable?

Google Search Console is an essential tool, if you are planning on improving your businesses organic seo, the main tab that is often used is the “Performance” tab which can let you know, where your website ranked for say “luxury chocolates”- say if you a chocolate business.

And for a lot of businesses in Wales, they will want to see where their website has moved to, sometimes on a daily basis.

For example, you might rank number 2 for “companies that deliver chocolate” this week, but the following week, well for the same term you might rank 10th, this is why businesses often need a reliable tool, like Google Search Console, to see where the business ranks.

Is it just for SEO agencies to use?

No, most definitely not, businesses of all sizes use Google Search Console, from sole trader businesses, through to really large multinational companies also use this tool.

Property

Okay, so for some businesses they may well be part of a group of companies, for example, let’s say you run a construction company, that’s based here in South Wales, well, you might have say 10 different websites, yet, you can add all of these to just one Google Search Console account, which makes this much easier to manage.

That’s because you can simply, log into your Google Search Console account, then click on “Property” and select which domain name you want to see the SEO information for.

Click on the “performance tab”

The performance tab is by far the most commonly used button that our agency uses, that’s because it offers reliable information, which can be sorted by say just one day, a whole week, or a custom length of time, for example for the last 10 months, then you can see, is the number of clicks going up?

What is the average position of a chosen phrase or word for your business?

Okay, so we did mention this part a bit earlier on within this article, but it’s definitely worth mentioning again, that is, Google Search Console is often used to see where a phrase, such as “organic chocolates” ranks for-  this is what seo agencies, like ours call the “average position”, so for example, let’s say over the last 10 months, where did the site rank on average?

Then you can compare this with say the last week, does it look like your company has moved up, so for example, over the last 10-months for “organic chocolates” the business might have been ranked 49th, now in the last week, you might be “26th”- which is a good improvement.

What is a query?

A query is simply something someone types, or uses Google voice search to find your company, so for example, if you sell ladders, a query might be “ladder companies that deliver”.

Number of impressions

Impressions are simply the number of people that make the same search, so for example, lets say you’re a company that sells, luxury coffee, the number of impressions might be 1000 per day, meaning 1000 people have searched for luxury coffee.

What backlinks are leading to the site?

Our agency, and many other agencies, use Google Search Console as one of the tools to see which incoming backlinks the site has, our agency also uses other SEO tools as well.

URL inspection, and how this can sometimes be used to speed up indexing of a website

Let’s say your marketing agency has just written a mammoth 30,000 word article, that’s an evergreen piece of content marketing, its about coffee, as you own an independent coffee shop in Cardiff, yet you’ve invested in an e-commerce website, as since lockdown, you want to sell your Fabolous coffee all over the U.K- so, if you’ve spent so much time writing an article, or lets say your SEO agencies have, then you can sometimes speed up the time it takes to get indexed by “GoogleBot” and indexed into Google’s algorithm- how do you do that? Well, you can just use Google Search Console’s URL inspection tab.

What does the “manual action” tab mean?

Your business should check to see if Google has placed any penalties on your site, for example a manual action. This most definitely will need attention, and often needs rectifying by an seo expert, who can resolve the issues, that the Google Manual Action has flagged.

How our agency can help:

We run an agency within Cardiff, we work with many different types of Welsh businesses- we specialise in offering SEO services, yet we also build very high-quality websites, we also offer to write content marketing, so, if you need help to improve your seo, why not call our company?