Tag Archive for: seo

The Power of Social Media Marketing

What is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing refers to the process of gaining website traffic or attention through social media sites. Social media marketing programs usually center on efforts to create content that attracts attention and encourages readers to share it with their social networks.

Social media itself is a catch-all term for sites that may provide radically different social actions. For instance, Twitter is a social site designed to let people share short messages or “updates” with others. Facebook, in contrast is a full-blown social networking site that allows for sharing updates, photos, joining events and a variety of other activities.

How Are Search & Social Media Marketing Related?

Why would a search marketer — or a site about search engines — care about social media? The two are very closely related.

Social media often feeds into the discovery of new content such as news stories, and “discovery” is a search activity. Social media can also help build links that in turn support into SEO efforts. Many people also perform searches at social media sites to find social media content. Social connections may also impact the relevancy of some search results, either within a social media network or at a ‘mainstream’ search engine.

As long as you think of search and social media as separate projects and place them in silos, you won’t see the maximum impact for your business. Create a cross-functional process between the search and social so that you can integrate the search learning into social media, and the social media learning into search. The search keywords, social conversations, and the target audience behaviors are some of the key information that you should be sharing between the two.

The Bottom Line

It’s vital that you understand social media marketing fundamentals. Besides increasing brand awareness and establishing the legitimacy of the brand, social media marketing can affect the bottom line of a business by increasing sales. Learning about the importance of social media for marketing should also underscore why these efforts need to be continuous and the harm it does when social media marketing isn’t up to consumer expectations. Long story short, social media marketing is something that every business needs to do and needs to do well.

An integrated social media platform can enhance marketing campaign effectiveness, help improve brand building across the enterprise, and make a real impact on sales and the bottom line. Integrated social capability brings another great benefit by keeping the enterprise updated with the latest innovations in social media. Sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn are constantly innovating and updating their collaboration tools, content-sharing formats, etc. With integrating social capability, customers don’t need to change business functions in sales or marketing to catch up with these changes.

In today’s much-hyped world of social media marketing, integrated social capability can make a direct and positive impact on the business. Leveraging the power of content and social media marketing can help elevate your audience and customer base in a dramatic way. But getting started without any previous experience or insight could be challenging. Speak to an expert today at Onimod Global to learn how YOU can leverage your company’s social media marketing.

The #1 Reason Why Position #1 Doesn’t Matter

That’s right — position #1, the elusive goal for so many SEOs, may not matter so much anymore. Crazy statement, right? Trust me… follow me for just a minute.

The screen shot below shows what Google refers to as a featured snippet, also known as a direct answer. (It’s also one I searched recently when baking, realizing I forgot to buy self-rising flour and hoping I wouldn’t have to go back to the store. Anyway, moving on… )


As you can see, the direct answer information is displaying above the initial search result. I don’t even have to click on the link to find the answer I need. I’m able to see that if I pull the baking powder and salt out of the cupboard, I can save myself a trip to the store.

While this is great for the end user, it means that MyRecipes.com provided me the information I needed, but I never visited their site. In many instances, however, the consumer is still going to visit the website because they need more information than what’s displayed in the direct answer.

So why does position #1 not matter as much? While the direct answer shown above does come from the #1-ranked website for the search query, it doesn’t always work this way. The direct answer is pulled from the site with the best answer, and Google doesn’t seem to care how it’s ranked.

In the example below, the featured snippet has been pulled from the #3-ranked result. (Not that I’ve ever searched this particular query in a sleep-deprived moment during the past year… )


Can you imagine the difference in traffic for the #3 result with the direct answer vs. the #1 result without? Normally, the top organic ranking would have the highest click-through rate; however, the direct answer is likely taking traffic from the top result here (if not getting the majority of the clicks).

It’s important to optimize the content on all of your properties, not just your website. Yes, you really do need to include full content descriptions on your social profiles, because you never know what Google’s going to deem the best candidate for a direct answer.

In the example below, Google has chosen a featured snippet from a video on Pottery Barn’s YouTube channel for the search query, “how to hang drapes.” A page from Pottery Barn’s website that contains tips and how-tos for hanging drapes is #1 in the SERP — but because they’ve optimized their YouTube video description, it’s been selected as the direct answer. This benefits Pottery Barn in the long run, because now they have more real estate above the fold.


The video is embedded in their website, along with additional supporting content on hanging drapes. Pottery Barn’s how-to guides provide a great information resource for customers, and that’s likely why Google’s rewarding them with both the featured snippet and the #1 position in the SERP.


The featured snippet is pulled from the video description on YouTube:


So, what does all of this have to do with your SEO content strategy? When you provide useful information that’s easy to follow and understand, it could be used as a featured snippet in Google search results. If that happens, you will likely see a boost in traffic to your site — perhaps even more than the top organic result.

If you have optimized your site and your social channels, you can potentially gain a bigger portion of the SERP landscape through the featured snippet and position #1 ranking. However, even without #1, if you have the featured snippet, you are essentially the new #1.

Now that you understand the reward, you need to determine how to go after the direct answers. Start by searching Google for some of your target keywords (especially long-tail variations that take the form of a question) and find out if these queries trigger a featured snippet.

If these searches do produce direct answers, look at the sites that are obtaining them and evaluate what they’re doing differently. If you have the right information on your site to answer the query, double-check your setup. Do you have a dedicated page for each question with comprehensive, high-quality content? Or do you answer the question as part of a larger FAQ page? You may need to make some changes in order to win the featured snippet placement.

Direct answers are still relatively new, and they’re not on all queries. You may find that they’re starting to add them for queries related to your vertical, but the number of questions being answered is limited. Remember, even if a particular query doesn’t trigger a direct answer now, it may in the future — so you can always start creating content with that in mind.

Keep in mind that featured snippets are more commonly found on informational queries rather than transactional ones, so optimizing your content for direct answers will primarily be for the purpose of capturing searchers at the top of the funnel. In other words, plan your content accordingly; don’t try to use product pages to obtain featured snippets unless it’s appropriate to do so.

Position #1 isn’t as important as being the direct answer. Focus on creating great content that’s useful to your audience, and target the queries that would send someone to your site. While simple answers such as “what is a substitute for self-rising flour” may not drive tons of traffic, queries like “how to hang drapes” will likely drive traffic and quite possibly revenue in time.


H/T: Search Engine Land.

Is Your Brand Prepared For Voice Search? 3 Steps to Get The Conversation Started

Whether you work in SEO or PPC, you’ve likely noticed a new trend emerging in your search reports: a rise in longer-tail searches and question-based search phrases. The likely culprit? Voice input.

Voice search is easier than text input; we all know this. We can speak something much more naturally than we can type it. Most of us are looking for a fast fix or a way to make multi-tasking more efficient, and conversational user interfaces fit that bill perfectly.

Whether we want to ask Alexa to clarify a recipe while cooking, ask Siri for directions while driving or run quick searches during the commercial breaks when second-screening, we’re all getting increasingly comfortable using voice search and digital personal assistants.

Take a look at the rapid adoption rates that Search Engine Land reported on back in December:


The vast majority of folks reported adopting conversational search just within the last several months, showing how dramatically it is growing.

Why does this matter?

There’s an obstacle that brands face when adjusting to voice input for search. The obstacle is that we will turn this easy input into a complicated problem because we haven’t adjusted for it.

Here are three simple steps you can take today to prepare.

1. Rethink how you’re showing up for branded searches

Do you follow the comedian John Oliver? I love how good he is at skewering companies or people who are doing things they shouldn’t. Recently, he did a report on the problem of mistaken identity in credit reporting with the three big credit reporting companies.

John Oliver’s investigation revealed that as many as 10 million people in the United States have major errors on their credit reports as a result of mistaken identity, but the major credit reporting companies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) have no system in place for fixing these errors which cause a lot of havoc in people’s lives.

Here’s what he did:


He suggested his viewers visit parody sites his team created at equifacks.com, experianne.com and tramsonion.com. Because, as he said, “It would clearly be a horrible thing if these actual companies were mistaken for these fake companies. But don’t worry – 95 percent of the time, that won’t happen. And apparently that’s good enough, right?”

While this is a hilarious parody, we do need to take into account variations in pronunciation when it comes to voice search, since the margin of error here can be quite vast.

I could search for these brand names and still come across the parody sites, like here:


As you can see, this is not ideal for the credit company’s brand.

I’m going to walk you through a true example, and this is your cautionary tale.

I did a voice search on Cortana on my desktop for Bobbi Brown makeup. I noticed that Cortana spelled “Bobbi Brown” differently from the brand name:


Here’s what the SERPs looked like:


Great job on the shopping ads here, and the organic results were on point, too. In this case, misspellings had been accounted for within the search strategy.

But what about brands that are not in English?

Let’s take Yves Saint Laurent as an example. I searched for “show me Yves Saint Laurent bags” using both Siri and Cortana:



Cortana did much better here than Siri did, but the variability in pronunciation means that we can’t count on voice search getting it right every time — at least not for a while.

Advertisers need to anticipate these issues and commit some time to resolving the voice search picture for their brands.

What can you do?

  • Research misspellings that can result from common mispronunciations of brand name, product name or key search terms.
  • Add them as a test to your keyword optimization strategy, though be careful to add in relevant negative keywords, as well.

2. Adjust for natural language

Natural language shows intent more strongly.

When you type a search, you use computer language — “Bahamas vacation deals,” for example. When you speak a search, you use your own language: “What are some Bahamas vacation deals for June?” or “How much does it cost to fly to the Bahamas?”

The advantage of this is the degree of specificity. That’s also where brands can stumble.

If your listing in the SERPs for one of these specific queries is a generic page, chances are you’ll lose the click. To boost your chances of winning, make sure you offer search results that can answer the query most closely.

For example, here are three of the ads that showed up for a conversational search for “What are some Bahamas vacation deals for June?” Which one would you have clicked on?


The third ad mentioning the “summer sale” has a very high level of relevancy, and it is the only one that factored in the specific timeline mentioned by the searcher. That’s the one I would have picked!

What can you do?

  • Optimize your landing pages and ad copy to account for high-value natural language searches.
  • Since broad match may not always account for natural language queries, consider adding these high-value natural language queries as keywords within your PPC campaigns.
  • Select keywords based on the degree of intent the searches reveal. For example, I may not want to bid on “Who lives in the Bahamas?”
  • Adjust bids based on degree of intent. For example, I would want to ensure I raised my bids for relevant queries such as “What are the best vacation packages for the Bahamas?”

3. Adapt for top of funnel

Of course, you’re showing up for branded searches or transactional searches directly asking for your product. But what about being helpful to your customers by answering their questions with information you have to share?

As you know, content marketing helps brands build loyalty. When it comes to conversational search, it also helps you show up for long-tail queries, which is another aspect of voice search that is becoming more critical.

Since voice search queries have been shown to frequently contain question words, marketers could benefit from informational creative that addresses top-of-funnel queries, as well.

While they may not immediately be transactional, this content could help build your brand’s goodwill and engagement levels.

For example:


What can you do?

  • Research a list of FAQs relevant to your products, and try optimizing those pages for the natural language query version of the questions.
  • Monitor additional KPIs, such as assisted conversions for PPC, as well as micro-conversions, such as form fills or content interaction.

In summary

Think of the last few searches you did using voice. How often are you using it? This is a great time to get a jump on voice search and voice inputs, as we all try to figure it out together as an industry.

The early adopter gets the advantage, so why not get the conversation started at your company?


Article H/T: Search Engine Land. Image: Alexander Supertramp / Shutterstock.com

Search Drives 10X More Traffic to Shopping Sites Than Social Media

SimilarWeb data argue that search remains the dominant source of traffic to desktop sites. Read more

Seven Ways to Jump-Start Your SEO Before a Site Launch

You’re about to launch your new website. You have a fantastic idea/product and a great team. You understand the basics of SEO. But you think you cannot do SEO without a live site. It is impossible, right?

Actually… no!

It is more than possible. In fact, it is critical.

Way too often, website owners fail to do pre-launch SEO. This results in a poor index of their site. So instead of jumping up in the rankings, their site is ignored by Google and the other search engines and buried deep in the results. They then are stuck with a long climb, even, in many cases, for their branded terms.

Following are seven smart ways to jump-start your SEO before your site launch, and I’m going to show you exactly how to implement each one.

1. Create a “coming soon” page and optimize the basics

Creating a strong, optimized “coming soon” page should be one of the very first things you do as you contemplate your new site. There are lots of reasons why this is important:

  1. Search engines give older sites more authority. Remember, it takes time to get ranked by the search engines, so start doing it with your “coming soon” page to cut some wait time after your launch. Robots don’t care if there’s a “coming soon” message on the page; they care about the content, keywords and user experience.
  2. Your coming soon page is a source of leads. Include a strong call to action here and entice visitors to fill out a lead form, perhaps by giving them something like a PDF guide, a video, an entry in a giveaway or detailed infographic in exchange. Keep adding to this leads list and nurture these leads throughout the process of getting the site done.
  3. This page can help build your brand. Express all of the information on your page in your brand’s voice. Use high-quality images on the page. Make sure all messaging is on point.
  4. You can begin to connect with users, even without a full site. Connect your “coming soon” page to your social media presence. Use your growing social media circle to create buzz about the new site and your content. Engage with people to entice them to visit the site as soon as it’s launched. Let everyone know that something big is coming soon.
  5. You can showcase press mentions and make it easier for press to contact you. Include a media kit on your “coming soon” page. Your media kit should be attractive, colorful and easy to access. It should include all of the basics about your business and website, and this is yet another chance for you to optimize content on this page with rich, descriptive content. In your press kit, include:
    • logos that media contacts can download and use;
    • all contact information for you and the business;
    • your mission statement and company overview;
    • a FAQ section, bios for you and your core staff; and
    • a summary of media coverage to date.

    Update the kit frequently. Not only will this ensure that it is more complete, but it’ll lead search engines to see fresh content here regularly. Make sure to do the kit on standard web pages so that it can be linked to and ranked.

If you’re still not convinced, remember: Google has advised webmasters to use a “coming soon” page in the past.

2. Build out all your social media profiles

It is absolutely critical to start building your social media community before your site launches. You want to make sure that you already have a loyal following who is invested in your business when the launch happens.

By engaging your audience on relevant social media platforms and sharing great content, you are fostering trust in your brand and business and furthering your reputation as an authority.

Make sure you have complete profiles on all of the biggies (Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+) and any of the other platforms that specifically speak to your target audience.

Connect each profile with your “coming soon” page, and make it simple for people to follow your social media presence and get updates about the launch by just clicking a button.

3. Get (at least) 10 blog posts ready

Well-optimized, actionable content will bring tons of organic traffic to your site even when it’s still very new. There is no shortcut here; you need your content to be high-quality. And while you need to keep that content coming long after the site has launched, you should already have a healthy content reserve in place at launch.

This is because the web crawlers will be visiting your site to index it right away, and you want them to have plenty of information-rich content to index from day one. Long-form content, in particular,  is going to provide a depth to your brand-new site that can’t be replaced, and it simply ranks higher in search results.

Also, in some cases, it is a good idea to start a blog pre-launch. This will allow you to do pre-launch announcements, add continual fresh content and build up a little SEO authority and buzz.

Hopefully, you will also be able to attract some links. In addition, when you start doing press releases, you will have your blog ready so that news sources and consumers can refer to it for more information.

4. Create all your pages, and make sure they are optimized

Along these same lines, you need multiple pages within your site, and each must be optimized. Include long-form, high-authority content that your target visitors will use on each page. Don’t reinvent the wheel from page to page; instead, make sure each page is focused and useful.

Remember to use keywords, long-tail keywords in particular (Your site will not rank for large terms right away), on every page and in page titles. Put your keyword database for your site to work on every page. You want to make sure you’ve created a fantastic, optimized page for every possible aspect of the business before the launch happens.

Then, when you go live, search engines will index the pages properly and (hopefully) give you some initial rankings.

5. Guest blog to build links to your domain

When I bring up guest blogging to build links to your domain, I’m not talking about spammy self-promotion. I’m talking about producing some of your best work to share with the audiences of sites you admire.

When done properly, guest blogging is a fast, powerful way to generate traffic to your site and leads for your email list. It also allows you to build your credibility and eventually become an influencer.

Search for the best guest blogging opportunities by checking the sites in your niche and finding out what kinds of guest posts they’d like to see. You can also search out the keywords and phrases that you want to be associated with to see where people read and write about those topics.

Finally, you can simply search for “guest blogging opportunities” or “write for us,” along with your niche keyword or phrase.

6. Put your site in key, niche directories

This step is critical before your launch. A directory simply lists sites and businesses and breaks them down using categories and sub-categories.

By getting your website listed in the right ones before launch, you will have built authority to your “coming soon” page that will be transferred to the rest of your pages when they go live.

If the directory is well-known and widely used in your area of business, it will be worthwhile. But don’t pay for just any directory. Make sure you know the directory is a real powerhouse in your field before paying.

7. Sign up for core sites

These core sites include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Google +
  • Yelp
  • Best of the Web
  • Bing Places

There is a great service called KnowEm, which can help you do this more quickly.

The Checklist

There are a lot of things you can do prior to launch; I have not added every idea under the sun here. But this is generally a good checklist to build upon:

  • Create a “coming soon” page.
  • Create a media kit.
  • Get 10 blog posts ready, or just start blogging one to five times a week pre-launch.
  • Create and optimize all your pages on the back end before you launch.
  • Guest blog (shoot for one to four posts a month for the three months leading up to launch).
  • Sign up for niche directories.
  • Site up for core websites.
  • Do a series of press releases (product or company updates, benchmarks and so on).
  • Create YouTube videos if relevant.
  • Send products to bloggers to review before launch.
  • Pay for pre-launch advertorials, if possible.
  • Start building an email newsletter and send out updates.
  • Get in the press. (Craft your story and pitch it to editors. Respond to Help a Reporter Out requests and promote your product.)

Post-launch bonus: Remember to use metrics to monitor your results

The time immediately following your launch is crucial to your success. This is the time you must monitor your traffic, assess your results with metrics and test/tweak your strategy. Don’t lose time here. Stay on top of it.

Watch for red flags like these:

  • unusual dips and gaps in traffic, as well as general trends;
  • losses in keyword ranking;
  • spikes of 404s which signal crawl errors; and
  • unusually slow pages on the site that may be getting missed in the indexing process.

Also, make sure you have a great launch strategy. This will be the time to really hustle.

A little more wisdom…

One of the worst things you can do is launch an unoptimized site. Ask yourself this: How many websites do you think are launched a year?

You want to stand out, and to do it right, you need to have an optimized site. And not just optimized a little, you need to really put in the time. If you are new to the online space, make sure you work with someone with experience, so you have an optimized site and a great pre-launch SEO strategy.


R/T: Search Engine Land

Link Wars: The Force Awakens

Link building looked different a long time ago (in a galaxy far, far away). Columnist Winston Burton explains how things have changed and what works today.

Google’s algorithm to impact website visibility takes hundreds of factors into account, but none of them have been as important and impactful as the almighty link.

“When I first started in SEO more than 10 years ago, the link was the most powerful factor in improving your search engine rankings, especially if you secured links from high-quality, trusted domains with keyword-rich anchor text from sites with high Page Rank.”

Getting a link used to be the way Google found and indexed sites. A lot of companies made a lot of money by selling links, because back then it was easy to manipulate rankings in various ways, including:

  • getting links from affiliate networks;
  • purchasing links from high-authority sites;
  • obtaining links from .gov and .edu sites by exchanging some services or items;
  • using blog networks;
  • procuring links from microsites;
  • and purchasing domains just for links.

Those were the good old days. But now, a link is just a link, unless it is clicked on many times by humans with specific intent, which is the new force in search.

Search engines have been devaluing some link tactics over time because of past abuse, which is evident by all of the Penguin updates. However, securing high-quality links is still absolutely necessary for ranking high with Google, Bing and others.

In short, a lot of tactics and strategies that were used back in the day no longer offer any value and, in fact, can be harmful. These days, it’s all about building high-quality content, securing (and maintaining) links from relevant and authoritative sites and weeding out spammy backlinks to your site.

Offering High-Quality Content

One of the best ways to secure links is to offer high-quality content that meets the needs of users based on their intent. Offering content in a user’s moment will increase conversion rates and drive more sales.

Consider a consumer’s path to purchase. For example, if a person’s car battery dies, he or she may turn to the web and do a search for “car battery.”

This is the beginning of the research phase, just seeing what’s out there. The consumer will continue to refine the search based on the kind of battery that fits their vehicle and price range. Once the consumer figures out exactly which battery to buy, he or she may perform a branded search (e.g., “DieHard Advanced Gold AGM PowerSport Battery 9-BS”) and make a purchase from there.

Each of these searches represents an opportunity for a car accessory retailer to be found by the customer and gain brand exposure. Brands must have high-quality content for each stage of the user journey to maximize this opportunity.

Having great content at all stages of the user lifecycle provides consumers with a great experience that has the potential to keep them coming back for more.

Pro tip: When you build new content, test it through paid social media to give it the extra boost it needs to get in front of your target audience and attract more endorsements and links.

Monitoring Your Existing Links Closely And Taking Action Where Necessary

Always monitor your existing links, keeping track of the good ones and pruning the bad ones.

Ensure that your links are contextually relevant and provide value to the user by offering additional information, products or services that will help them. Remember that Google is taking user engagement into consideration in its algorithm.

Carefully monitor any losses from high-quality and authoritative sites. For example, if you’re a computer manufacturer, and you had a link from CNET with a great review of your product, you want to ensure that you keep that link. Not only is it a relevant link from a well-respected site saying positive things about your brand, but the presence of an easily clickable link has the potential to drive sales.

If you lose such a link for some reason (e.g., you change domains or someone updates the page), you must contact the webmaster to get it back. Otherwise, this could have a negative impact on your search engine rankings.

Additionally, you should seek to remove any suspicious or unnatural links to your site that have the potential to cause website penalties. This might include paid links, links from spammy blog networks, links from questionable sites or links from pages/websites that aren’t relevant to yours. If the webmaster doesn’t want to remove those links, you can use the disavow tool in the Google Search Console.

Final Thoughts

While the very fabric of the web originally was built around links, that was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. It pays to keep in mind that links were invented to be clicked on, not just for search engines to consider in their ranking algorithms. Thus, end-user behavior is the new force in link power.

Obtaining high-quality links is still very important for improving search engine visibility. Brands should focus on creating high-quality, engaging content that meets the needs of end users based on their intent at all stages of their journey.

Always focus on quality over quantity, because it is not about who has more, it is about who is more trusted and offers value and a great user experience. Quality and relevance win every time.


Ref: Search Engine Land. Winston Burton. 

Goodbye Keyword Optimization — Welcome To The Age of Topical Optimization

Every business should have but one goal: to be an authority in its industry.

You might think the number one goal should be gaining new customers or making more sales. Obviously, that’s what any business wants. But businesses pursuing sales are often left in the dust by the businesses who are actively seeking to be industry authorities. That’s because sales and customers are like love — they are usually found when you’re not looking!

Many businesses succeed for a time by competing on price, but sooner or later, people realize they get what they pay for. Once that happens, they are gone, and the businesses pursues the next sucker.

The cost of keeping a customer is far, far, far (far, far) less than going out and getting a new one. That means getting people in with the lowest prices is going to kill your profits if you can’t keep them. And you’re only going to keep them by demonstrating, day in and day out, that you are the authority in what you do.

And all that starts with content.

When it comes to businesses, web searchers today are often looking primarily at two things: 1) customer reviews, and 2) authoritative content supplied by the business. The former is a reflection of the service you provide. The latter is a reflection of how well you “know your stuff.”

As we know, today’s search engine ranking algorithms have a heavy focus on content. We’ve always sought to optimize content with keywords, but now, keywords matter a whole lot less than actual topical authority.

But just how do you build that authority into your site?

If you said, “Content,” you’re half-right. Yes, content matters, but not just any content. Gone are the days of sites producing truckloads of “thin” content of little value. And gone are the days of optimizing any given page for keywords and hoping it will rank. Instead, search engines are looking for authoritative content that is more topically optimized than keyword-optimized.

Keyword Research Isn’t Dead

Keyword research is not dead

Many are proclaiming that keyword research is dead, and you might assume I’ve drawn the same conclusion. I haven’t. In fact, I think keyword research is more important now than ever, if we are going to write topically optimized content.

But the focus of our efforts isn’t on finding keywords just so they can be sprinkled into the site’s content. Instead, we focus on organizing the keywords into meaningful topical groups and considering searcher intent. From that, we are able to create meaningful, authoritative content.

My company, Pole Position Marketing, performs keyword research in two phases: 1) core term research, and 2) phrase research. If you get Phase 1 wrong, you’re going to have problems with Phase 2.

Essentially, core term research entails finding as many relevant keyword topics as possible. For example, if you sell salon products, your keyword topics might be shampoo, conditioner, hair color, hair dye, acrylic nails and so on. Each of those is a separate core term.

Once we have found all our topics, we can research each independently for a more lengthy list of phrases. For example, you might find “childrens shampoo,” “full body conditioner,” “permanent hair color,” “natural hair dye” and “acrylic nail kits.” That’s just a single example for each core term. Your keyword research is likely to produce a list of anywhere from 50 to thousands of phrases for each core term.

Obviously, not all the phrases you find will be relevant for your business, and those that are can’t all be included in a single piece of content. Any attempt to optimize a single piece of content for every relevant phrase is more likely going to end up diluting your content, rather than creating a single-focused authoritative piece.

Searcher Intent Determines The Content Focus

Searcher intent

One of the things you’re likely to find when sorting through all those keywords is that different keywords have different intents. Some searchers are looking for information, some are seeking out specific products and some are just beginning to see what’s out there and make comparisons. And surprisingly, some keywords are for a different product altogether.

For example, a keyword research for “acrylic nails” reveals a lot of different intents. Most searchers using that core term are looking for acrylic nails. No surprise there. But some are looking for designs, glitter, supplies, tips, kits, powder, polish, brushes, art and primer. The first thing to note here is that we’re likely not going to produce a page focused on all of these keywords. It’s just too broad.

So that means we have to divide these up. But we’re in luck, because searchers looking for “acrylic nail designs” have about 15 different ways for searching for that. Which means writing authoritative content on that topic shouldn’t be that difficult.

The same holds true for most of the other phrases mentioned above. Each produces a small list of keywords all narrowly focused on a subset of acrylic nail searches. Each one is worthy of a page of expert-knowledge content for either a page on your site or a blog post.

Topical Optimization Versus Keyword Optimization

Topical Optimization example

So far, we’ve talked pretty much about standard keyword optimization strategies. Maybe in the past, you felt that you could only optimize one keyword per page, or maybe you were already grouping keywords together like this. So where does the whole topical optimization come in?

Let’s go back to our salon store. We listed a number of different product lines offered on the site. Most businesses want immediate optimization for each category page on the site that represents those products. For our acrylic nail section, that would leave us with a handful of keywords for content focused on our most-searched group of phrases.

And that’s where most optimizers move on. They go from the Acrylic Nail category page to the Shampoo category page to the Conditioner category page and so on. The more product lines offered on a site, the more important it is to move on so that each product line gets authority content optimized for search.

But maybe moving on isn’t such a good idea. Maybe before we move on to the shampoos, we spend some more time on our acrylic nails. Take the time to optimize a page covering each of the keyword groups within the topic. For acrylic nails, this might mean optimizing more than 30 pages and blog posts. That builds up total topical dominance for a single topic.

Yeah, that means it may be a while before you get to the other products, but that’s okay. Better to have a single topic optimized to the hilt than to have 30 topics barely optimized. Why? Because by optimizing out the entire topic, you’re giving the search engines exactly what they want. Not only will you rank for hundreds of keyword phrases, you’ll also dominate for that topic. With one topic fully optimized, you’re ready to move on to the next.

Topical optimization doesn’t mean you have to have a single page or post that covers everything that needs to be said on the topic. Not only does that limit the number of entry points, it also doesn’t necessarily help searchers to land on the page that best represents their intent.

Instead of optimizing your site for keywords and hoping to rank here and there, focus on building the site out to dominate a topic with multiple pages and blog posts.

Each page or post will target a tightly correlated group of keywords, but all built around a slightly broader topic. That gives you a chance to dominate a topic through multiple related pages, each focused on a specific visitor intent. That’s tough to beat.

Topical Optimization

                                                                                                          H/T: Search Engine Land

5 Reasons Your Business Marketing Is Incomplete Without SEO

Search Engine Optimization is a tool to increase your visibility in the digital space. Organic Search Engine Optimization or SEO, is absolutely vital to achieve long term search engine visibility for your website. It is treated with high regard in the online marketing sphere because it increases your chances of reaching relevant prospects and proves to be an efficient marketing strategy by targeting the user intent. If you delve deeper into the science of SEO, you will surely find it to be very effective and proficient tool which brings good results in no time if implemented well.

When we compare both outbound and inbound marketing services, we get to the conclusion that inbound marketing tends to bring in interested parties who are looking for information based on your business. This is exactly what SEO tends to do. If your business is looking for more ROI with minimal investment, ensure that SEO forms the part of your marketing initiatives. Rather than embracing outbound techniques that are interruptive in nature, SEO is customer-centric and the message is only presented to the prospects when they need them.

Here are 5 reasons that will prove why your business needs the best SEO services:

1. SEO Brings Traffic

Within 3 months of consistent and high-quality search engine optimization efforts, your business could see an unbelievable difference in the way your online visibility gets positively affected. The main aim for any SEO initiative is to help you in gaining valuable rankings on search engines that could result into more click-through-rates and more traffic.

SEO also focuses on on-site optimization that brings greater visibility on search engines. It is beneficial to have optimized tags and web pages to help you in increasing the click-through-rate for your website. More relevant traffic to your website means more conversions and revenue.

2. Measurable ROI

SEO offers quantifiable results for all kinds of business’ sites. So, you don’t have to worry about measuring the ROI of your SEO. The agencies providing search engine optimization services are capable of scaling almost all the aspects of their SEO campaigns, such as traffic, conversion rate, revenue and more.

Detailed analytics report helps in getting accurate information of all the visitors of your site and their journey in the conversion funnel.

In the case of e-commerce websites, SEO agencies helps by short-listing people who used a particular keyword that you are targeting.

3. SEO is Cost effective

SEO has earned the reputation of being one of the most reliable and cost-effective marketing strategies due to the simple fact that it only targets relevant visitors who are searching for the goods and services or any information that you are providing.

In complete contrast to outbound marketing, where you target several people you don’t even know whether they are interested in your brand, SEO methodology only targets interested audience and that’s why it is cost effective as it saves you from spending hugely on outbound such as newspaper ads, tele-commercials, billboards, cold-calling and more.

The traffic generated by SEO is more qualified than other marketing strategies.

4. Increased Site Usability with SEO

When you implement the various factors of SEO into your website, it will make your website user-friendly and the focus would be on making it more navigable. Not only does the user will find it easy surfing through your website, but it will also help you in getting a better ranking on search engines.

The principles of SEO tend to rearrange the website’s links and architecture and this will make your website user-friendly. The users find it easy to find out more information on your website, which boosts the engagement rate of your website, lessens the bounce rate, and could increase conversion rates for your website.

5. Brand Awareness

SEO is the most cost effective way to enhance your brand awareness. Undoubtedly, SEO will help you in gaining more exposure and click-through-rates, but the best things that SEO could do is to redefine your brand with some great content. You could definitely try and get better rankings with extensive SEO, but what will retain the visitors on your website is your content.

Search engines factor the quality of your content in their SERPs and have released some strict algorithms that help them in considering only those websites that fulfill the user intent. Every search request is an opportunity; each action on a social site is an opportunity. Having the correct brand, product or service positioning is essential.

For further expert advice and services in SEO contact Onimod Global today.


Ref:  Lifehacker  Onimod Global

Google Panda Update Coming Soon

Google’s Gary Illyes announced that the next Panda update will happen in the upcoming 2-4 weeks at SMX advanced.

Illyes referred to it multiple times as not an algorithmic change but a data and info refresh. This is an interesting piece of rhetoric as it has been noticed that the organic results in the last few weeks have been uncharacteristically stagnant.  This data update refresh is sure to shake up the organic rankings a bit, however we are not expecting an algrothimic shift style change.

Illyes also explained that it is in Google’s best interest to keep this data fresh, so the they want to keep it updated as frequently as possible. This particular algorithm needing manual refreshes as it is not as automated as algorithms in the past.

Keep an eye on our Blog for more updates as these changes come live.  As always do not hesitate to contact an Onimod Global expert to discuss your organic rankings and website visibility.

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#Mobilegeddon: Did Your Mobile Site Survive the Google Algorithm Update?

It’s happened, Google Algorithm Update is now upon us. But what’s changed? And how has the world reacted?

Web publishers around the world are commenting on Google’s mobile-only algorithm and the common theme is one of concern for the deadline, but also a desire to do what’s best for their site visitors and the long-term goals of the business. Jim Olenbush, a real estate agent in Austin noted:

“The old site works well and it is quick loading and error free. The new responsive design was slower initially and required some work to speed it up, plus we kept finding crawl errors. We have been working on the new site for a long time, and I thought I would have it online by Jan 1st at the latest. And when Google announced their mobile “deadline” later I thought we would be online with the new site in time. But ultimately it is not quite ready, and I would rather miss out on some mobile traffic for a little while than to release a new site with issues such as broken links, missing canonicals and other errors. Those errors are bad for users, and they are also harmful to future rankings if you accidentally send Googlebot crawling a bunch of duplicate content pages on your site.”

Mobilegeddon is here

According to Neil Marshall, the head administrator at WebmasterWorld.com, there are four major concerns dominating discussions:

1. Inherent shortcomings of mobile friendly designs

2. Lingering uncertainty as to the best solution; responsive design or a dedicated mobile site

3. Degradation of the search results if the best sites aren’t mobile friendly

4. Surprise that so many competitors aren’t already mobile friendly

Designing for Mobile Involves Difficult Choices

There are indeed many shortcomings in mobile designs, including aesthetics, particularly the awkward placement of various navigational links. And there is no clear choice as to the best solution, responsive design or dedicated mobile. Responsive designs often make compromises in site design which may not be favorable to either desktop or mobile visitors. While creating a strictly mobile solution means dealing with essentially two websites, and the headaches that come with maintaining two designs for the same content.

Will .Edu Web Pages Disappear from Google?

The concern that the mobile algo will favor lower quality mobile-friendly sites at the expense of the best sites is justified. Content hosted on .edu websites represents some of the most authoritative information available online. Will that content disappear if it’s not mobile friendly? I spoke with Gregg Banse, the Web Services Manager at George Mason University who noted that many university websites are composed of independently developed websites, with each department responsible for their own web design.

“The sites are undergoing a major overhaul as I write this. The issues stem from the fact that George Mason University departments (much like many of the larger universities) developed websites on their own because of a lack of central leadership back when it mattered most. The result is 500+ silos that we’re working to apply a common brand and bring on board a brand new CMS platform. The initial launch will be late this summer and won’t be completed until summer of 2018.”

If George Mason University is typical, then this could pose an issue with the quality of Google’s search results for which university websites are the most relevant result. 2018 is a long time to go with what may be compromised search results.

Was Mobilegeddon Not Publicized Enough?

According to Neil Marshall, web publishers have noted that many competitors are not yet mobile friendly.

“There’s surprise amongst many how few sites in their niche’s are mobile friendly, especially as we all know mobile was the next big thing a few years back.”

This is true even in Japan. I asked Daisuke Nakata, a search industry authority in Japan if Japanese websites were mobile friendly by now and he responded, “Not in general.” Then added that web publishers are concerned,

“Japanese web masters are serious about this algorithm change.”

Lada Kalashnickova of the Russian search industry news site, SearchEngines.ru, noted that web publishers have been anticipating this deadline with great interest.

“Russian web publishers are concerned with the mobile update, of course. We are trying to stay up to date with mobile friendly sites regardless of Google’s deadline, we find it very important. It is not so much fear that is motivating concern for the deadline, but then again we can not say it is business as usual either.”


That may very well sum up the general mood of web publishers around the world. For many this may be a non-event because they’ve already updated their sites. For others it’s business as usual, just one more thing to deal with. How this affects .Edu websites is an important consideration and how that will be resolved remains to be seen. Will high quality university sites be whitelisted and receive a free pass or will their authoritative information go missing on Google? How about you, are your sites mobile friendly? What is happening where you are at?



R/T Search Engine Journal. Featured Image: Create by Author for Search Engine Journal Using Shutterstock Images 1, 2 and feature image Google Images.