Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is and always has been a core competency of MoreVisibility. We have been advising companies’ for ten years how to make their sites more SEO friendly. That being said, it is also imperative not to forget the importance of ensuring that your site is User Friendly.
When was the last time you looked at your site from a visitor’s perspective? We all get busy with day to day nuances and before you know it, a year has passed since you completed a thorough review from the standpoint of a user. I encourage you to take the time to visit your site and go through it page by page. Really read through your content; does it read the way you want it to or should it be updated? Are there new offerings that should be included? Perhaps different or updated calls to action would be appropriate?
Important items to take note of:
Make sure your pages load quickly and without errors. Did you know that Google will penalize you if your pages have slow load times? In other words, if an advertiser’s landing page loads slowly once an ad is clicked on, the ad position and minimum bid for keywords will be affected, as will your Quality Score.
Is your site easy to navigate? Think like a customer; make it seamless for your visitors to maneuver through your site and find exactly what they are looking for. For example, if they click on “Newsletter Signup”, you will want to ensure this brings them to a simple and user friendly form to complete.
Does your site have clear calls to action? What is it that you want your visitors to do? Here are some examples of calls to action that are clear and to the point: Call Now, Act Now, Click Here, Enter Coupon Code for Discount, Enter Your Email Address, etc.
Remember, your website is a representation of you. Make sure it says exactly what you want it to say.
For many advertisers who run a search engine marketing campaign, it is very common to get comfortable with a certain amount of visitors. Over the life of a campaign, advertisers may notice trends in regard to their paid efforts.
But, what should an advertiser do when the amount of paid traffic to the site begins to decrease or halt completely? It is important for advertisers to try multiple methods in order to maintain a consistent performance level. By using an analytics platform, such as Google Analytics, advertisers can identify which keywords are causing the campaign bounce rate to increase. An analytics program can also help you identify geographic locations where your ads are performing better.
Checking the Quality Score or Quality Index of your keywords gives you an indication of whether or not a low score could be preventing your ads from showing. Also, by reviewing your minimum bid requirements, you can see if your keyword bids are not aggressive enough to have your ads display on the first page of search results. It is important to check cost per click bids regularly, as over time certain industries may become more competitive; this may cause cost per click bids to increase.
If keyword bids and quality scores are not the problem, it might be your ad copy; stale ad copy can certainly impact campaign performance. Creating fresh, exciting ads with captivating offers or specials can not only attract new visitors to your site, but also improve the amount of sales you generate.
Another suggestion to increase your online marketing campaign performance is to conduct new keyword research. Many advertisers consistently use the same keywords in their paid online efforts year after year and do not perform research on what additional keywords may be added to the campaign. The addition of new keywords allows advertisers to capitalize on ones that they have not in the past. Also, by using geographic analytics data, you can include geographic areas within your keywords to attract new customers. Geo-specific keywords resonate highly with searchers and more often than not, lead to significantly higher conversion rates.
Increasing campaign performance is never an easy task, once the traffic has slowed to a crawl or stopped completely. However, by habitually reviewing different aspects of the campaign you may be able to prevent dips in traffic from even happening.
With Google Insights for Search, you can “compare search volume patterns across specific regions, categories, time frames and properties”. Don’t you wish Facebook provided a similar tool for search and wall-posting activity that occurs within its ecosystem? They do….it’s called Lexicon….and it’s FREE! If your business is still in on the fence with regard to launching and maintaining a presence in Facebook, I suggest utilizing a combination of tools (namely Lexicon) and manual research to help determine the most appropriate strategy for gaining visibility and engaging with your customers and prospects.
A comparison of the terms “iphone” and “blackberry” are illustrated below.
Although Lexicon does not currently provide the granular level of segmentation that Google Insights does, these features are in the works and can be previewed here: http://www.facebook.com/lexicon/#/lexicon/new/. Cool new features include:
Of the new features in the pipeline, it is tough to choose just 1 favorite. Associations, Sentiments, and Pulse are my personal faves. Associations are similar to “Rising Searches” or “Breakout Searches” provided by Google Insights. The Associations graph is great for identifying related terms that are used in conjunction with the core term you are researching. See below for associations with “Swine Flu” wall posts in Facebook.
Consider using the same language in your Wall Posts as your prospective customers. Just how you should position yourself depends on your overall strategy for the channel. Using the Sentiments info provided by Lexicon can help guide the process. Lexicon Sentiments gives you an idea of positive versus negative commentary on the term you are researching. If you find that there is an overall negative sentiment toward your product / brand, be prepared to address the concerns head on!
Pulse is awesome! It gives you insight into interests (keywords) of users posting content relative to the keyword you are researching. This data can be tremendously valuable when setting up Sponsored Ads. For example, if I wanted to target football enthusiasts, Lexicon provides me with a list of keywords to include in targeting for my ad. The example below provides a breakdown of favorite TV Shows for users who posted wall content relevant to “football”.
While proactive keyword research and competitive analysis is critical to planning an engagement strategy for entering new platforms (or markets), Lexicon is not generally one of the go-to tools; it has somehow managed to go unnoticed by many online marketers. Maybe it is the excitement of Google Insights or the buzz about Twitter Search that has pulled would-be users into other channels. Perhaps subscription-based options give users a greater sense of value? Before heading down the road of paid or proprietary tools, check out what people are saying about you on Wall Posts in the Facebook ecosystem.