To get ahead of their competition, many businesses today employ experienced search engine marketing companies to increase the ranking of their web pages in search engine results. However, some of these enterprises are not aware that SEO strategies could also work on mobile device platforms. This is becoming more important now since according to a Harvard Business Review article, the number of mobile internet users is rising rapidly. (more…)
Responsive Web Design: How Businesses Risk Losing Customers by Ignoring Google’s Recommended Mobile Friendly Configuration
Mobile Internet users are expected to outnumber desktop users by next year. It is therefore no surprise that Google is paying close attention to this development. And so should you. Because if your website is not yet “mobile responsive,” you may be turning away prospects who browse your web pages via smartphones, tablets, or laptops. And frankly, mobile users are prospects you wouldn’t want to lose.
Non-Mobile Ready = Non-Customer Friendly
A study by Sterling Research and SmithGeiger for Google found that a whopping 96% of users have encountered a website that is obviously not designed for mobile. This would not have mattered to you if not for the following findings also uncovered by the same study:
- 52% of users are unlikely to engage with a company whose website brought them a bad mobile experience
- 36% of respondents say a non-mobile-friendly site wastes users’ time
- 67% of users are more likely to purchase if the site is mobile friendly
To add up to business owners’ growing woes, Internet research company comScore estimates that 52.4 million Americans now own nearly 58 million tablets. Another research group, Pew Internet, says 56% of American adults have a smartphone. Worldwide, there will be 1.4 billion smartphones by the end of 2013, adds ABI Research. That’s with a B, billion.
Take note that these devices are not just capable of connecting to the Internet; they will be connected to the Internet. Cisco estimates mobile Internet usage will skyrocket at a pace of 66% in the next five years.
Needless to say, Internet users – including your prospect customers – have been and will be viewing your website using mobile devices. That’s a major problem if your site is not designed to load properly on mobile.
Supported, Not Preferred: Dynamic Serving & Mobile Sites
In total, Google supports three configurations in serving content for smartphones: mobile responsive, dynamic serving, and mobile version website. The search engine prefers the first option. As for the other two, they are supported but not recommended.
The second supported-but-not-preferred option is actually creating another website, a mobile version of the main site. It is often carried out with a different domain, such as m.example.com, indicating it is meant for mobile visitors. The creation is the easy part. Ensuring pages properly redirect to their mobile equivalent pages is the tough task. Faulty redirects mean Google won’t be able to find and rank your mobile pages properly. And oh, now you have two sites to maintain (desktop and mobile) so you have twice as much optimization work to do.
Supported & Recommended: Responsive Web Design
And then there’s Google’s preferred method of servicing mobile users: responsive web design. Of all three configurations supported by the search giant, it leans on responsive more because of its many advantages not just in improving user experience but also in speeding up web page indexing and ranking. According to the official Webmaster Central Blog, here’s what Google has to say when building smartphone-optimized websites:
“Sites that use responsive web design, i.e. sites that serve all devices on the same set of URLs, with each URL serving the same HTML to all devices and using just CSS to change how the page is rendered on the device. This is Google’s recommended configuration.”
Because the desktop and mobile content are on a single URL, it is easier for user to find, link back to, and share that content. It is also easier for Google algorithms to assign the indexing properties to your content. “Google can discover your content more efficiently as we wouldn’t need to crawl a page with the different Googlebot user agents to retrieve and index all the content,” the company explains.
What Makes a Website Mobile Responsive
In a nutshell, responsive is serving both desktop and mobile users the same exact HTML, changing only its appearance via CSS. This means your web pages load perfectly on all devices, regardless of screen size, without needing to change the HTML for each device or to create a separate mobile website.
A mobile responsive website has three key features: a flexible or fluid grid, flexible images, and CSS3 media queries. These features allow the website to “adapt to the viewing environment”. The website adjusts for viewers so they won’t need to scroll in all directions and zoom in and out whenever browsing via smartphones, tablets, and laptops.
Why You Need to Shift to Responsive Today
Be More Visible Online – The responsive configuration makes it easier for Google to index pages since its crawlers will only deal with one set of code. Since you won’t create a mobile site, you also avert the possibility of faulty redirects, allowing pages to be discovered and ranked.
Build and Improve Your Brand, Reputation – The Sterling Research and SmithGeiger study also found that 48% of users are “frustrated and annoyed” by a non-mobile-friendly site. Being perceived as “annoying and frustrating” won’t help your brand and reputation.
Capture Desktop and Mobile Targets – Desktop users roam your site effortlessly. But what if they use a smartphone or a tablet to browse? Some 48% of users think companies that have non-mobile friendly sites “don’t care” about their business. Googdbye, mobile user leads and sales.
Dominate Your Competition – The same research found that 61% of users will quickly go to another website if they don’t immediately find what they need on your mobile site. Keep your site non-responsive and your competitors will thank you for the customers you send their way.
Save on Development Costs – You need to spend upfront to get a mobile responsive website but it’s actually more cost-effective in the long run. It’s cheaper than building a separate mobile site and then maintaining two websites. It’s cheaper than losing mobile customers, too.
Give Focus to Your Marketing, SEO Efforts – It is hard enough to make your pages rank on the first page of Google for main keywords. Imagine if you had twice the number of pages you need to carry out optimization for. Imagine promoting a doubled number of URLs. Chaos will ensue.
Prepare Your Business for Long-Term Success – More and more page views are coming from mobile, and less from desktop. Next year, mobile viewers are expected to outnumber desktop users. With a responsive site, you are ready for this long-term shift in website traffic origin.
Ignore Google, Risk Losing Customers
Google is unrelenting when it comes to user experience, and that’s why it has the largest search share.
By following Google’s recommendation, you are providing quality experience to your site visitors, whether they connect via desktop or mobile. Remember, they are not just visitors; they can turn into leads that you can eventually convert into customers.
On the other hand, by ignoring Google’s recommendation of implementing responsive web design, you are preventing your site from being indexed by search engines the best way possible. You are also effectively sidestepping a crucial advice to improve your site visitors’ user experience, and therefore turning away prospect customers. So, do the right thing for your business: get a mobile responsive website today.
Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 424-888-0291 now to see how you can avail of our free in-depth consultation… so we can make your website and business mobile responsive, customer friendly, and ready for the future.
SEO providers will almost always claim that they are the perfect solution to your online marketing problems. Frankly, we do too! But only because we know we really are. Here’s what sets us apart and why you should choose us.
Watch the video:
We understand the business side of SEO. You’ll hear providers talk about SERPs, rankings, traffic, links, and other technical mumbo-jumbo. We have gone beyond this going to the next level because we know what you need. We know that what you need is a steady stream of loyal, paying customers who want to buy from you over and over again, and then refer your business to their friends. You need loyal followers who will visit your site every day, engage in your content, and share it with their network. That’s the focus of our SEO approach.
You need to ensure that your provider understands your business and your industry. After all, your provider will serve as your online machine. They must have you marketing objectives as the blueprint in their mind to ensure that every effort is working toward your business goals.
Your online marketing company should be capable of laying out the business plan to your online success. But in order to do that, they must intimately understand your business and your business plan.
We create quality content that speaks to your target audience. We focus on creating content that is valuable to your target market – not keyword-stuffed and unreadable articles! One type of content we produce is promotional-based content, which is targeted to your existing and potential customers. This content will contain anything from promos, coupons, sales, and current discounts you have to offer. We create blog posts that your prospects want to share with their friends. We create press releases, company updates, and industry news that make your prospects more interested in your products and services. We want your prospects to think positively of you. Custom quality content has a positive effect on audience attitude, says 90% of CMOs asked by the Custom Content Council.
We will build your Google+ authorship. Unlike other providers that use it solely as a social network, we utilize G+ to improve your overall SEO footprint. Google+ authorship stamps your content with Google+ markup, identifying you or an appointed person as the author or publisher of the content published on your website and blog. When we stamp Google authorship on a piece of content, you are given credit for it through Google’s eyes. And the accumulation of authorship credits can help you to rank higher in the search engines.
We Ensure Proper Website and URL Structuring
We optimize your pages, ensuring your site has the proper structure. A proper site and URL structure make users navigate and flow easily across your website. A faulty URL structure, on the other hand, confuses users and makes it difficult for search engine crawlers to index your pages and content. We’ll also carry out URL mapping to determine which pages should be optimized for what keyword.
We Optimize Your Search Engine Tags
These include your meta tags, allowing your site to better communicate with the search engines. We will optimize page titles, descriptions, and even alt texts for images. Tweaking your coding will enable search engines to index your pages faster and rank them higher for your chosen keywords.
We Utilize Social Media and Social Publication
When we publish new content on your blog or anywhere online, who knows about it? We make sure everyone knows about it! We make sure that when we publish content about you, everyone in your social world and beyond will know about it. We set up accounts for you in the top social media and social sharing sites, the top blogs, as well as the top press release sites. When we publish content, we let the world know through the accounts that we’ve established online for your company.
We Build and Attract Natural Links
Because of the high quality content we create, we are able to attract natural links. Authority sites are more likely to link back to your site, and therefore pass link juice to your pages. We carry out natural link building techniques that do not over optimize anchor texts or use any kind of black hat scheme that violates search engine guidelines. More quality links we build to your website, the higher your website will rank, the more visitors you will get. And of course, this will turn into more sales.
We offer an in-depth consultation, first and foremost. We are committed to help you become much more successful and for your business to grow. You will see this when you see us in action right at the very beginning. We offer you an in-depth consultation before asking you to avail of any of our services.
We want to thoroughly understand what your business is, who your target customers are, and how we can meet their needs. This way, we are aligned with your goals. We’ll propose ways on how we can help you based on the research we do and our free consultation with you.
We are here to help you grow your business. We have the know-how and experience in the SEO industry. We want to understand your business and your worries. We want to gain your trust by displaying our intelligence and show you performance through our professional execution.
If people think we are passionate about the marketing industry, they should see how passionate we are about our clients’ marketing. We want to be responsible for your success and help your company to grow.
You will never find this level of quality and commitment from other SEO providers in our price range.
So go ahead send us an email us or give us a call now at 424-888-0291 to learn more about how we can help you grow your customers and your business today.
How to Comply with Google Panda and Penguin Updates
Doing effective SEO has evolved into a more “natural” and “social” process. Algorithm updates, particularly Google’s Penguin and Panda, are continuously changing the course of conducting search engine optimization. Penguin targets bad links while Panda goes after poor content. Google, through their algorithm updates, has reiterated that website owners and search engine optimization practitioners must create a better experience for users. And that trying to manipulate rankings through keyword over optimization, link schemes, and black hat methodologies will only harm your website — and your business.
See our Infographic:
Here are some Penguin and Panda update-compliant SEO methodologies.
Publish High Quality Content
The era of run-of-the-mill, duplicate, and poor content is over. If you want to get into the SEO battle and win, then producing high quality, compelling content should be in your arsenal. Great content is key to increased visitors, more engagement, more inbound links and higher rankings.
- 72% of B2B marketers use content marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy – BtoB Magazine
- 86% of B2C marketers use content marketing – Content Marketing Institute
- 90% of consumers find custom content useful. – TMG Custom Media
- 90% of CMOs say high quality content has a positive effect on audience attitudes – Custom Content Council
- 79% of marketers say their organizations are shifting to branded content – Forrester
- 72% of marketers rate branded content as more effective than magazine ads – Custom Content Council
- 60% of consumers feel more optimistic about a company after reading onsite custom content – Content Plus
Stamp it with Google+
Google+ Authorship & Publishership
Google+ is not just the search engine giant’s answer to Facebook. Plus is a social layer that connects all your Google activities. Google+ authorship in particular is a powerful SEO tool as it stamps your content on your website or blog with your identity as an author or publisher; and you are given credit for every piece of content you publish. The accumulation of authorship credits helps you to rank higher on search engines.
Google+ is Growing Fast
- Has 359 million monthly active users as of March 2013
- This is way up from 135 million in December 2012
- From only 100 million users in September 2012
Claim your Authored Content
By creating a Google+ profile and linking it to your website or blog, you can claim authorship of your content with your Google+ profile. Once authorship is claimed, your Google+ profile will show up next to your search results.
Get Indexed Immediately
Content posted on your Google+ will be indexed immediately into the Google search results, increasing the possibility of your Google+ network seeing your posted content in their search results. When your audience engages with your content it will be further advertised to your audience’s network. In this chain reaction, posts have the ability to go viral.
Great Content plus Google+ Influence Search Rankings
High quality and compelling content will most likely receive +1s and shares. These act like social recommendations, influencing what searchers see on Google SERPs while they are logged in to any Google account.
Create Content and Publish it on your Blog
Blogging revolutionized publishing content on the web and is the mother of social media. It is now, and more than ever, a great tool for providing high quality and fresh content to your target audience and for SEO.
Write informative and engaging posts that people want to read, make use of and share with their friends and you acquire back links without engaging in black hat techniques.
- Companies that blog have 97% more inbound links – HubSpot
- 92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog – HubSpot
- B2B marketers who use blogs generate 67% more leads than those that do not. –InsideView
- Companies that blog receive 434% more indexed pages on average – HubSpot
- Businesses that blog at least 20 times/month get 5x more traffic than those that blog 4 times or less – HubSpot
Do Articles, Press Releases the Right Way
Mass-produced articles and press releases are often tagged as duplicate or poor content, partly due to article spinning, anchor text over optimization and massive submissions. But when implemented the right way, well-written articles and press releases attract the right kind of site visitors.
- 70% of consumers prefer articles over advertisements when it comes to getting to know a company – Content Plus
- 80% of business decision-makers prefer a series of articles over advertisements when it comes to getting information about a company – Content Marketing Institute
Just make sure to AVOID:
- Massive submission of articles and press releases
- Submission to article and press releases farms
- Keyword-rich, overly optimized anchor texts
Use Promotional Copy
Promotional content is a powerful tool. Consumers are attracted to promotional copy because people inherently like good deals. And it’s also a type of content that they will share with friends. Consumers visit a site over and over again to check on their latest promotions. Promotions attract visitors, are shared around and produce back links naturally. Promotions attract traffic, leads, customers – and keep them loyal.
- 83% are likely to tell a friend about a company that uses sales promotions, such as special offers, discounts or coupons
- 76% said they have a positive feeling toward a company that offers online sales promotions
- 71% said they are likely to be loyal to a brand that offers online sales promotions
- 66% said online sales promotions improve a company’s image
- 65% said online sales promotions help finalize decisions for undecided buyers
Share It Socially
It’s not enough to create high quality content. You need to share it with the world; make sure everyone sees it so that they can link back to your site and share it with their networks. Social sharing completes the modern SEO methodology of attracting social and natural traffic and links. Social media is beneficial not just to SEO, but also to sales as 90% of users listen to recommendations shared from friends.
- 92% of consumers around the world say they trust online recommendations from friends and family, above all other forms of advertising
- 70% read other experiences
- 65% learn more about businesses, brands, products & services
- 53% compliment brands
- 50% express concerns about brands, products & services
- Users spend 30% of their time online on social channels where content can be shared. – AOL & Nielsen
“Natural and social” SEO focuses on creating high quality content users want to read, use, and share. High quality content can spread naturally across social networks as well as build natural links. This consequently results to higher Google rankings.
Google Penguin and Panda updates are meant to improve Google search results for users. Business owners can do their share in improving the user experience by employing SEO service providers that use natural and social methodology. Quality SEO will result in increased exposure of your website, higher rankings in the search engine, more traffic to your website, and result in more sales for your company.
So if you want quality SEO done for you, email us at email@example.com, or give us a call at 424-888-0291 today for a free consultation.
Most people think of cute animals when they hear the words “Penguin” and “Panda” but for many search engine optimization service providers, these two words are to be feared. Google’s Penguin and Panda are algorithm updates that play separate roles in improving the overall experience of online users.
While algorithm updates should be primarily a concern for companies providing online marketing services, business owners who use SEO services should also know about them. That’s because if your SEO service provider happens to violate Google’s SEO guidelines, these algorithm changes will drastically affect your website’s ranking and your business will suffer the consequences. So before it’s too late, read our guide on the dreaded Google Penguin and Panda updates and what they mean to your business.
Introducing Penguin, the Web Spam Fighter
The Penguin algorithm is targeted at web spam. It was launched in April 2012. Its second version was released just this May, with two other updates in between Penguin 1 and 2.0. “The change will decrease rankings for sites that we believe are violating Google’s existing quality guidelines,” says Google’s official announcement. “Next generation” Penguin affected 3.1% of search queries.
Google search spam chief Matt Cutts advised webmasters to build websites that “people will tell their friends about and bookmark,” as opposed to conducting spamming. Web spam is often conducted by SEO providers desperate to get back links. In short, Penguin is about links.
Get to Know Panda, the Crusher of Poor Content
The other algorithm change that shook the SEO industry was Panda, which was designed to target poor quality content, particularly duplicate articles. It was launched in February 2011, with the most recent update rolled out just this July.
“This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful,” says Google’s announcement. At the same time, Panda will also improve the rankings of “high-quality sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis, and so on.”
What These Updates Mean to Your Business
In the online marketing world, there’s a popular term called “slap” which is when Google penalizes a website for “black hat” methods, or practices that violate its guidelines. Sometimes a penalty can be as “subtle” as a slight drop in rankings. Sometimes it’s as worse as being removed from search results. Regardless of what penalty your site receives, it can lead to a massive drop in traffic and in the overall positive reputation of your website. No traffic means no visitors, no leads, and no sales.
The hard part is recovering from these penalties. You will need to clean up your website, remove spammy backlinks, and so on. And then you will need to reinvest your marketing budget on more SEO efforts, this time hoping that you will not be penalized. Investing in non-compliant SEO service providers, therefore, is not a wise move. Any black hat activity they conduct can result to penalties for your website, and lost opportunities for your business.
How to Tell Compliant SEO from Spammy and Poor SEO
Not all business owners have the technical know-how when it comes to online marketing. That’s why they rely on trusted SEO service providers to take care of their websites and online presence. In essence, they entrust their business to SEO service providers. It is therefore crucial to know if you are indeed entrusting your business to a provider that is compliant with Google’s SEO guidelines and in tune with these search algorithm updates.
Here are some indicators that your provider is up to date with SEO best practices:
- Focusing on High Quality and Fresh Content – Content must be written for the target audience and not for search engines. Content must be something of value, something useful to users connecting your business, products or services to them. It is therefore important that your provider makes an effort to understand your business, target market, products and services through consultation and provide a mechanism for regular creation of content.
- Building Natural Backlinks – The best way for people to link back to you is to publish high quality content that is engaging and worth sharing.
- Using Social Media – A smart SEO service provider uses social media to help spread your content in the digital social sphere. Likes, pluses, shares, tweets, and retweets strengthen your social signal which is important as it is part of the SEO signals that Google detects.
- Saying No to Spammy Techniques – Make sure your provider does not involve spamming in their SEO practice. Unnatural or spammy links will get you and your website in trouble. A compliant, high caliber SEO service provider does not do the following:
- Massive submission of articles to article submission sites
- Massive forum postings
- Massive guest postings
- All of the above with the same sets of keyword-rich anchor texts
- On-Page, Off-Page Optimization – Ensure your SEO provider optimizes not just the content on your site but also your navigation, SEO tags such as the title, description, alt texts; overall site structure. They also optimize (but not over-optimize) content and links placed on external sites such as blogs, press release sites, social media and social sharing sites.
- Knows Panda & Penguin Updates – Online marketing services providers must know all about Google’s algorithm updates. If they could not provide consulting about it, then it’s either they’re not yet compliant or worse, they really don’t know about them.
How to Deal with Google Algorithm Updates
Recovering from Panda and Penguin penalties will be difficult and time consuming. But if that happens, you will need a comprehensive website audit report to know what could be the possible causes of the penalties. Bad links need to be removed. Bad content needs to be improved or taken down. Your compliant provider will know what to do.
The best way to deal with algorithm updates still, is prevention. While business owners need not know the technical aspect of SEO, it will help if they can determine whether a provider is up to date with the latest search algorithm changes. All it takes is to ask the provider about the items above. Doing so will give you some idea on whether they are compliant and if you can indeed entrust your website and your business to them.
Our SEO methodologies comply with the latest search algorithm updates, including Google’s Penguin and Panda. We are not into black hat techniques, spammy practices and over optimization of anchor texts. We focus on creating high quality and fresh content, building natural links, uses social media, maximizing Google+ for improved SEO footprint, and conducting on-page and off-page optimization.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us now at 424-888-0291 to see how we can help you get more traffic, leads, and customers online.
Today is an awesome day for the new Moz. It’s great to see the industry moving in this direction. As much is gained from a highly optimized online presence, SEO will remain the core framework to accomplish this goal. And as we see today that is very clear. Moz, formerly SEOMoz, is paving the way to move in the direction of an overall inbound approach to marketing. In Rand’s post today he states that SEO today has grown to become the most powerful marketing channel in history.
But not only is SEO maintaining it’s spotlight, it’s now fueling the growth for companies that leverage full content marketing solutions to promote their brands. And also with the updates to Moz we see them now painting a clear picture of what that Old SEO world is and was, and where the New SEO world has taken us… to that of a place of overall transparency, empathy (which we mention the value of in this post), authenticity, generosity, and overall fun with your marketing campaigns. This type of human centric approach is left out when running spam content campaigns or other non-connecting type of efforts.
The focus is shifted to an overall content centric approach, where the business becomes the expert in their niche. Their syndication methods, methods of spreading their message and ability to speak directly to the things that move their audience most. The types of messages that motivate your audience to make the decision on their own to become your fan.
I think Moz hits the nail on the head with this update to their brand and message. As a major industry player clearly recognizes the new world marketing has assumed, it assures agencies deploying an overall inbound solutions that their practice will benefit small businesses for years to come. Investing in earned loyalty is here to stay.
As agencies help to generate momentum for small businesses, we can only expect to see a major boom in things like number of existing Authorship citations and Author-Expert designations. This is the type of thing that fuels local communities to connect as well as online communities to grow viral.
To sum up, here’s a good quote from Rand’s article:
“For as long as I’m active in the field, I will be shouting the value of SEO from the stages on which I present, the publications where I write, and the social channels where I share.”
The value of SEO is in the content, the message of that content, and the overall targeted reach it can achieve.