The Artemis Marketing blog is an excellent resource for news, information and advice on the world of Search Engine Optimisation and digital marketing. Whether you’re a seasoned SEO expert or looking for tips on the basics of SEO, the Artemis Marketing blog has what you are looking for. The blog is regularly updated by the expert SEO team at Artemis with features, news and more.
As marketers, we can spend all day writing about our fantastic products and services; how it works, what the benefits are and answering FAQs. But customers are increasingly savvy – they understand that any company can create great marketing copy, and where can they find content that they can really trust; customer generated content, of […] The post How your customers can add content to your website appeared first on Artemis...
As marketers, we can spend all day writing about our fantastic products and services; how it works, what the benefits are and answering FAQs. But customers are increasingly savvy – they understand that any company can create great marketing copy, and where can they find content that they can really trust; customer generated content, of course.
“More than eight-in-10 global respondents (83%) say they completely or somewhat trust the recommendations of friends and family. But trust isn’t confined only to those in our inner circle. In fact, two-thirds (66%) say they trust consumer opinions posted online—the third-most-trusted format.” – Nielsen
Word-of-mouth marketing should be at the forefront your online strategy. Embrace user-generated content with effective strategies including testimonials, case studies, social media feeds, enabling comments and social sharing.
A classic; written testimonials. There are plenty of tools available to help you collect and manage reviews. Choose from third-party suppliers or review plugins to generate review ratings, testimonial sliders, rating badges and more.
- Ask your customer directly, share with them how delighted you’d be to receive their feedback.
- Make it simple, provide customers with a direct link and ensure the process is as straight-forward as possible; the less a customer has to do, the better.
- If you have physical premises, setup in-shop tablets to collect reviews then and there, ideal for service providers.
Create ‘case studies’ by working with your customers to share how your business helped them. This is the perfect opportunity to showcase your work and how your products or services have impacted the lives of your customers.
- Consider the title of this section, ‘case studies’ isn’t necessarily the most enticing tile. Consider ‘recent projects’, ‘customer stories’ and ‘clients we’ve helped’.
- Introduce your ‘case study’ with a testimonial from your customer, whether it’s captured on video or written in a quote, this creates an engaging introduction for your potential customers.
- Briefly outline the challenge or problem, relating the story to other users.
- Provide a summary of results, driven by facts, statistic, graphs or photographs. Use colourful, custom images. A picture is worth a thousand words; even stats can have visual appeal.
You’ve probably spent months, even years building great social profiles by engaging with customers daily. Don’t miss the chance to showcase this social proof on your site using social feeds. You may even increase your social follower count at the same time – it’s a win-win.
- Add social feeds to your site, pulling through social engagement. All those likes and comments you’ve received demonstrate just how popular your brand is.
- Start a #hashtag campaign on Instagram and add the feed into your website. Push bright and vibrant user-generated content to your website.
Written a great blog post recently? Allow your customers to express thanks and contribute thoughts by enabling comments.
- Enable comments in WordPress discussion setting.
- Allow for nested comments, letting customers interact with each other and allowing you to reply directly.
- Communicate with customers, keep an eye out for any questions they have or show your gratitude for their engagement by replying.
Whether it’s a product, service or post give your user the option to share the page on social media or email it to a friend. Pages with high levels of social sharing help to capture users’ interest by portraying positive engagement for other users.
- Add social sharing buttons to your posts and products.
- Demonstrate social proof by choosing social sharing buttons that display the number of shares received.
It’s all about the conversion
Combine user-generated content with clear and bold requests to users. Improve your conversion rate by capturing users who have engaged with your content.
- Add calls-to-action to your case studies
- Tell users to share your page.
- Take the next step after checking out a ‘Recent Project’
Keep track of your feeds, ensuring content displayed on your website hits the mark, but don’t be afraid of a challenging review or comment. Embrace the opportunity to show customers that you care by replying and resolving.
Enjoyed this topic? Leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts about customer-supplied content.
The post How your customers can add content to your website appeared first on Artemis Marketing.
In Part One of our series on artificial intelligence (AI) and search engines, we looked at how AI is changing the way the users search and how search engines function. Welcome to Part Two, where we will be taking a closer look at the ways in which the SEO industry will have to react to […] The post Artificial Intelligence and Search Engines. Part Two: Changing SEO appeared first on Artemis...
In Part One of our series on artificial intelligence (AI) and search engines, we looked at how AI is changing the way the users search and how search engines function. Welcome to Part Two, where we will be taking a closer look at the ways in which the SEO industry will have to react to AI and what it will mean for your website rankings on Google.
For as long as there have been search engines used by millions of people, there have been advantages for those websites and businesses that have been able to influence the rankings in their favour. As early search engines used relatively crude methods for determining results, it was historically relatively easy to optimise a site. However, over the years, algorithms have expanded and become more complex. AI is just the latest factor in this constantly evolving process. And to understand how AI is changing SEO, we need to first understand how SEO has evolved over time.
How SEO has evolved – a brief history
Today, SEO is big business: companies are willing to spend significant portions of their marketing budget to attempt to rank above their competitors in Google’s search results. The earliest recognisable search engines emerged in 1994 and the algorithms they used in order to rank the websites were fairly basic. Factors such as how many times a website used a specific word, whether that word was in the URL and the meta data, were crucial in determining where websites would be placed. This meant that a website owner simply had to ‘stuff’ their pages and their URLs with keywords to rank well – early SEO was simple.
The first major advancement in the intelligence of search came when they began to factor backlinks into their algorithms. When Google launched in 1998 it was revolutionary in the way it ranked pages because it looked at the internet as a whole, not just the content on the one website. It was able to see which websites were linking to others, and it recognised these links as an important factor in determining the importance and relevance of a site – akin to the way that a university essay cites sources. However, initially the algorithm worked on a relatively basic premise – the more links that a website had pointing towards it, the more valuable and powerful was deemed to be.
This led to a situation in which if websites wanted to perform well in Google’s search results they could continue to utilise keywords, but also boost their site further by building a huge number of links, regardless where these links came from. For a period of time this was standard practice. However, when Google realised that many businesses were using these sorts of underhand tactics to receive an artificially-inflated ranking, they deciding to do something about it. This saw the launch of two large scale updates to Google’s algorithm: Panda, promoting the value of high quality content, and Penguin, punishing sites with large numbers of links coming from poor quality sites.
This is where SEO became a far more complicated and delicate process, and website owners and SEO specialists had to think very carefully about everything they did to a website to ensure it wouldn’t fall foul of the new rules.
A more advanced algorithm
The fallout from Penguin and Panda was enormous, and it indicated that Google was going to be continually refining its algorithm to attempt to make it impossible to manipulate or artificially enhance a website’s position. The next major update, which was known as Hummingbird, focussed on a shift towards natural language.
While webmasters and site owners had become used to using text and content to serve a purpose (to drive sites up the rankings), Hummingbird placed a greater preference for sites that used ‘natural’ language. This meant that websites that were filled with useful and interesting content ranked higher than those that simply contained a good density of relevant keywords.
There is no doubt, then, that Google’s algorithm was evolving and becoming more advanced with each change. But at this point they all had in common that there were ideas that were programmed into the algorithm by humans. However, this changed with the deployment of RankBrain.
The rise of RankBrain
Google began using RankBrain as a factor it is search results in 2015. It is an AI system that is considered to be the third most important ranking factor, behind content and links. RankBrain uses AI to analyse words and phrases that it has never seen before – it can then make a guess at the meaning of the phrase based on similar phrases. This means that it is extremely effective at showing relevant results even if it does not necessarily understand the query.
As search has become more conversational and in the form of long-tail, complicated questions, this AI is designed to help the algorithm translate the questions into something it can understand and provide search results for. Data from previous search queries is fed into RankBrain and it is uses this data to learn how connections are made between topics. It is also able to spot patterns between searches that might appear unconnected.
This is one of the first examples of AI being used to improve search results, but this begs a question: how should website owners optimise their sites for an algorithm that is learning by itself?
This is good news for SEO!
It might seem as if the addition of AI to Google’s algorithm spells trouble for those in SEO – after all, as AI learns more about websites and what kind of content a user is searching for when they use a particular search query, it becomes much harder to manipulate or influence the system in any way. However, on closer inspection, this is actually excellent news for SEO – or, more specifically, those businesses using ‘white hat’ SEO techniques.
Reputable SEO agencies and experienced professionals already know the steps that they need to take to ensure not only that their site will rank well in search results, but also won’t fall foul of penalties under the algorithm: focus on creating the best possible content and achieving links that the website deserves.
However, it has always been frustrating for white hat SEOs when they can see competitors utilising black hat techniques and getting results without being punished. Not only will AI reward reputable and genuine SEO, it will make it easier for search engines to spot poor practice. AI is definitely bad news for those agencies and companies using underhand methods to artificially inflate their rankings.
What this means for content creation and link building
Let’s take a look at what Google itself describes as the two most important ranking factors in its algorithm: content and links. These will be affected by the rise of AI.
For example, Google’s is AI becoming better at recognising the difference between genuine high quality content and simply average, non-duplicated text. This means that those websites that create the best possible content that is genuinely useful and interesting to their audience will see the rewards. This effectively means that the best advice is to carry on with the same plan that Google has been recommending for a long time: create amazing content that answers the questions of your audience and provides value to the reader.
In terms of links, things have moved on dramatically from the early days when a link from any site would do. And yet, links remain a vital aspect of determining the quality of a website. This means that websites that focus on gaining strong, earned links from powerful and relevant sites will continue to see a benefit.
Additionally, as we have seen with RankBrain, Google is getting better at understanding search intent – what the user is trying to achieve with their search term. This comes from the AI being able to more clearly understand what a user means when they type in a query or use voice search. From an SEO perspective, you can take advantage of this by tracking how visitors use your site and drawing conclusions from the behaviour of those who convert.
How to prepare your site for AI
So, what should you do in order to prepare your website for the increasing use of AI in Google’s algorithms? The truth is that AI itself will not make any changes to the way that the algorithm operates – nor will it change Google’s priorities. The use of AI is to make it easier for Google to meet its main goal: providing the best possible search results for its users.
This means that to prepare for AI you simply need to follow the same advice that Google has been suggesting for a long time. Firstly, create the best possible content that is going to be genuinely useful and informative for the user; never has the phrase ‘content is king’ been more relevant.
Remember additionally that AI is constantly getting better at understanding natural, conversational language. This means that when you create your content you must always do it with a human reader in mind. Gone are the days that you could trick the search engine with content that was ‘optimised’ – if Google spots content that looks forced or unnatural, it will be able to tell the difference.
You also need to ensure that you are earning your links. With the help of AI, Google is getting better at noticing patterns and trends. So if you are still engaging in the practice of buying links this is something that Google will notice, more so than ever before.
Finally, it is more importantly than ever to stay up-to-date with what search engines are looking for from sites. As Google and others increasingly utilise AI it will make them more capable than ever to enforce their algorithms. So it is vital to stay ahead of the game. Working with experienced SEO professionals is crucial, as the development of AI in search is fast and it can be easy to get left behind without expert advice.
We hope you have enjoyed our series on artificial intelligence and search engines. This is still very much an emerging field and an exciting part of the future of SEO. Please check back to the Artemis blog regularly as we will be updating our content which further specific developments in AI and search engines, as well as providing insight into all areas of SEO best practice.
And if your business could benefit from our SEO expertise please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us today.
The post Artificial Intelligence and Search Engines. Part Two: Changing SEO appeared first on Artemis Marketing.
Team spirit is brimming over at Artemis this week after our brilliant picnic by the pond last Friday. The event was organised by our CSR Manager, Julia, to raise funds for local charity Kangaroos, who we are partnered with. The charity runs fun clubs and outings for children and young adults with disabilities in […] The post Artemis cake sale and picnic by the pond appeared first on Artemis...
Team spirit is brimming over at Artemis this week after our brilliant picnic by the pond last Friday. The event was organised by our CSR Manager, Julia, to raise funds for local charity Kangaroos, who we are partnered with. The charity runs fun clubs and outings for children and young adults with disabilities in Mid Sussex and they rely heavily on donations to contribute to their operating costs.
We’ve been partnered with the charity since the end of 2017 and we are always looking for fun ways to help raise much-needed funds for this brilliant organisation. Our cake sale raised a magnificent £270.80, which takes our total raised for the charity this year to £6,083.52 – wow!
We are so very lucky to be working in the beautiful Sussex countryside, so a cake sale made perfect sense to give us some time out to enjoy a lazy lunch by the pond and catch the last of the summer sun before autumn sets in. And it was a great chance to get to know our neighbours better too, so all of the businesses here at Danworth Farm were invited along.
Last week began with some carefully orchestrated lists of who was to bake what and picnic food requirements were divvied out to the team. We had everything crossed that the weather would hold out and it did.
The cake offering was amazing with everything from beautiful apple cakes baked by Nicole, to deliciously moreish chocolate and raspberry cake lovingly prepared completely gluten-free by Julia, and scrumptious bread pudding slabs made by Samantha from Kangaroos. There were many more, so sorry I can’t mention you all here! They were all yummy, judging by the delirious grins and crumb-filled laps afterwards!
We had lots of savoury snacks too, including a generous array of sandwiches donated by our MD, Mike Knivett. Everyone in the Artemis team contributed in some way and it was great testimony to the way we work and support each other.
We were bowled over by the generosity of everyone who attended. Kangaroos are delighted and so are we! A big thank you to the Artemis team who pulled a stupendous spread of food out of the bag, and for the picnic essentials, such as gazebo and chairs loaned to us by Matt, one of our account managers who also happens to be a hog roast catering extraordinaire.
Thank you to the other businesses who came, gave generously and hopefully enjoyed the gathering. It was great to meet you all. Huge thanks to Geo Environmental, Beauty Concepts, Pet Id Microchips and Cutters Barn for your donations. We hope you enjoyed the cakes and our company! Let’s do it again next year.
Work on our brand new office continues and the team at Artemis is looking forward to getting started working in our new (temporary) home. If all goes to plan the new office will be ready for us in just four weeks time. The windows and doors are in place, as is the decorative […] The post Office countdown – the work continues appeared first on Artemis...
Work on our brand new office continues and the team at Artemis is looking forward to getting started working in our new (temporary) home.
If all goes to plan the new office will be ready for us in just four weeks time.
The windows and doors are in place, as is the decorative wooden cladding.
Check back onto our blog soon for further progress updates on the new Artemis office.
In one of our recent blog posts, we took a look at image optimisation and some great online tools to reduce the file size of your images. In that post, we suggested that the ideal file size for images should be 100kb or below. This is because big images with large file sizes can slow […] The post The big picture – what to do with bigger images appeared first on Artemis...
In one of our recent blog posts, we took a look at image optimisation and some great online tools to reduce the file size of your images. In that post, we suggested that the ideal file size for images should be 100kb or below. This is because big images with large file sizes can slow down your website, which is a key factor for site optimisation – as well as keeping users from leaving your site to go somewhere else.
However, getting your image to this file size isn’t always achievable. In fact, there are some cases where you might not want to lower your image to 100kb at all. If you’ve got a big hero image that needs adding, then it is more than likely that reducing that larger image to 100kb will lower the overall quality of the picture.
When should images be 100kb or less?
So, you might now be wondering when you should actually aim to get your image to 100kb or less. Imagine you are working on a service page for your website, taking our previous blog post about image compression as an example. If you are putting an image in a content area like this, it doesn’t need to be very big. This includes the actual dimensions of the image, as well as the file size itself.
Say you have taken a great photo of one of your recent projects, and you want to include a preview of that on your service page. The photo itself probably looks fantastic, but you don’t need to squeeze in print quality images from a HD camera into a small section like this. Take a look at the file size and the image dimensions before you upload it to your page. You can check this easily by right clicking and going to the properties and details section of the image. If it is really big, try and reduce this to fit the area it’s going to be put. If you don’t have Photoshop, you can use a free tool like Pixlr.com or GIMP.
When should images be over 100kb?
Again, you should always aim to keep your file sizes low. In some cases however, this is not an option – and as mentioned, reducing the file size can have an impact on the quality of the image. If you are adding a big hero image, or maybe a gallery of photos to show off a recent project, then the image dimensions and file size are naturally going to be bigger. Still, you don’t need to upload images that are several MB in size. This is going to have a notable impact on your site speed if you do.
Try some of the tools from our previous post to see if you can get your file sizes down. There are a lot of great, free tools out there on the internet that can reduce your file sizes. Some of them also include a handy tool that let’s you preview the image as you adjust the size. This way, you can see whether the image quality is getting too low for your liking. You should also think about the dimensions of the picture you want to use. Does it fit the section you’re trying to put it? Does it need to be several 1000 pixels wide by several 1000 pixels high? Reducing the dimensions can also help to reduce the file size.
In summary, you just have to think about what’s best for the image that you’re uploading. Try and get the file size down as much as you can, but keep an eye on the quality of the image. See if you can reduce the image to an appropriate size. WordPress and other Content Management Systems might automatically scale down your images on the page itself, but it will still be loading the full-size image. A small image within your text doesn’t need to be several MB in size, neither does a larger image.
Performing a content audit can be extremely valuable. It can help you to improve your website and plan marketing activity, and it is something that almost every business could benefit from. Here at Artemis we regularly carry out content audits for our clients – if you are interested in having one conducted on your site […] The post How to perform a content audit appeared first on Artemis...
Performing a content audit can be extremely valuable. It can help you to improve your website and plan marketing activity, and it is something that almost every business could benefit from. Here at Artemis we regularly carry out content audits for our clients – if you are interested in having one conducted on your site by professional content and SEO specialists, please get in contact with our team today. In this blog we look at some of the benefits of content audits and how you can carry one out for yourself.
What is a content audit and what is its purpose?
A content audit takes a look at all of the content on a website to assess its strengths, weaknesses and performance. It is an evaluation of data and key performance indicators (KPIs) to help you to understand how well content is doing the job it is intended for, as well as gaining insight into how content could be improved and to guide potential new content creation in the future.
More than just an inventory of the current content on a site, a good content audit establishes the performance of all aspects of content and helps to guide future marketing activity.
Understand your goals
To get as much as possible out of a content audit, it is first important to understand why you are performing it and to establish the goals you are hoping to achieve. There are many different reasons to carry out a content audit:
- SEO – you may be conducting an audit to help you to identify areas of potential improvement for search engine optimisation (SEO). In this case it would be important to focus closely on aspects such as keywords, image optimisation, word count and current page rankings.
- Content marketing – it could be that you want to gain insight into the success and failures of your content marketing. Here you could take a look at visit metrics, social shares and user behaviour.
- Conversion rate – you might be most interested in improving the conversion rates across your site – a content audit can help to achieve this too
Create a spreadsheet listing your content
The first step in the actual auditing process involves finding all of the content on a website. This is where it can be useful to use a crawling tool such as Screaming Frog, as this will find all of the URLs associated with a site and provide them as a list, along with helpfully listing many of the relevant details about a page – such as its word count, headers and more. Many of these tools allow you to export the list in full, so this can allow you to easily create a spreadsheet with the content details you will be needing.
A more time consuming process could be to manually enter all of the pages and their details into a spreadsheet. Clearly for larger websites this would be impractical, but it might be possible if you are auditing a smaller site.
Analyse your data
Gathering relevant data is also an important aspect of your content audit. You will need to utilise various tools to pull in key facts. As discussed above, this will depend on the goals of your content audit, but you may wish to get data such as the last time the page was updated, how the page ranks on Google and how many conversions or goals that the page has achieved over a set period.
Once again, how you analyse the data is based entirely on the goals you are trying to achieve from your audit. But as an example, if you are looking at the conversion rates of your content you might be able to look at key metrics such as average time on page, bounce rate and completion of goals.
You can then see which pages are doing well, and which need improvement. It might be prudent to arrange the pages by those which get most clicks, so that you can focus your future content work on the areas of the site that are most active, but that convert at the lowest rate.
Look at the competition
You can take your audit further than the current content on your site by examining the content of your competitors as well as the most popular content found in the subject matter. Tools like Buzzsumo allow you to explore content in a niche to understand which is the most successful. No matter why you are carrying out your content audit, it is always beneficial to understand exactly what you audience is looking for.
If you would like to learn more about content audits or you are interested in having one carried out, please contact our experienced team today.
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