Demystifying How Search Engines Rank Your Web Pages

Demystifying How Search Engines Rank Your Web Pages

 

Whether you are in digital marketing, an SEO consultant, a web designer or simply a business owner wanting your website to be more visible it is important that you know how search engines rank different web pages.

 

 

002Digital marketing agencies are set up to utilise a number of digital tips, tools and tricks in order to best push a business and website into the limelight. The end goal is to of course increase sales and profits however many important steps along the way all include working to boost visibility via the search engine ranking systems.

 

There are two key elements to consider when a site or web page is ranked and that is to look at crawling and indexing.

 

1.   Crawling

This pertains to the search engine’s ability to navigate around the site it needs to index.

 

2.   Indexing

This is the process of actually listing pages from a website into the search engine’s index.

 

If you look at your website stats once in a while in depth you might see who or what has been crawling around your site. What you can’t see is how easy your site was to crawl and the immediate results of indexing so it is instead worthwhile taking steps to make access easier in order to “score” higher.

 

The way that Google looks at websites here in 2013 is much different to the way it has in say 2010 or even before. SEO experts and those in digital marketing will confirm that the landscape has changed dramatically in recent years thanks to Google updates which ultimately have been geared more towards organic and natural links, better quality and relevant content as well as all things socially related.

 

Signals and Graphs

 

Search engines use “signals” for want of a better term to look at the site demographic, geo-location, how it is or should be categorised and more.  Those involved in web design, SEO and even digital marketing need to understand what these signals may be and in short they include information such as the internal link ratios, how trust-worthy a site is and what authority it has, local information, the Meta data each page should include, anything link related and more. The list is extensive and you can read more on signals here which will give you an idea of what is considered when your web site is crawled and indexed.

Graphs are all about classifications. When a bot crawls a web page it adds it to the master list of other crawled pages in the same category. Called graphs these categories refer to:

 

  • Entity Graphs

Anything named for example “things”, events, people, places etc

Links: The links which connect to any sites which increase trust and authority in a given field as well as their relevance

 

  • Social Graph

This includes behavioral information, how the page is connected etc.

 

There are other categories or graphs to consider however it should have become clearer by now that these are the ones which need to be given more attention in order to help Google and other search engines index a website. How much effort the people responsible for SEO on your site put into these categories will affect how successfully the site is ranked.

 

Despite this breakdown of the ranking process which has hopefully enabled you to pick up some information which will better your changes of a better ranking no-one truly knows the ins and outs of Google or indeed any search engine’s crawling and indexing criteria. More may be found from Google webmaster tools however generally speaking being relevant, getting rid of those nasty backlinks and ensuring your site is informative, engaging, relevant and sports top quality content is the best way to work toward more successful rankings.

 

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Maximising the Potential of Your Guest Posting Campaign

imagesGuest posting is a common marketing tool used by businesses to gain more exposure. It involves writing an article with a hyperlink to your business at the bottom, finding a relevant website to post it on and requesting to do so by the website owner. It can be a really effective way of promoting your brand and gaining as much exposure as possible. In order to maximise the potential of your guest posting campaign, you should try and incorporate search engine optimisation as much as possible.

 

Good Content

 

The most important aspect of guest posting is to ensure that what you write is high quality and engaging for the reader, otherwise your campaign will be pointless. The aim of guest posting is to encourage traffic to your website, so you really need to give the reader a reason to want to click on your hyperlink. High quality content is the way to do this as it will encourage the reader to sit up and take notice. Take time to write your content, rather than just throwing it together. If you don’t have the expertise for this, a specialist external agency may be able to help. You should aim to use a target keyword in at least the title and the first paragraph of your article.

 

Relevant Topics

 

The content of your guest post should be relevant to the website you are posting on, so make sure you bear this in mind before you write it. The readers will already have some sort of interest in this subject if they are on the website, which is why you should write content which is relevant to them. Visitors are much more likely to click on your link if they believe your website will offer information that they really want to know about.

 

High Ranking

 

There is no point in using a website for your guest post which rarely has any traffic; otherwise it will be a wasted effort. You can easily check the page ranking of the website and whether it is high enough to be worth posting onto. The website may look good, but this doesn’t mean it is popular so a bit of research will be required. The higher the ranking, the more traffic, which means the better your results are likely to be.

 

Social Connections

 

If you use Facebook, Twitter or other social media platforms as part of your business, you can incorporate these into your guest posting. Depending on how many links the website owner will allow you to put on the author bio, you can have a link to your website and to your social media page.

 

Sporadic Posts

 

It is important to gain exposure but also to ensure you don’t saturate the market as this can be very off-putting. You should choose your guests posts wisely and keep them to a minimum. It is more important to post onto a high ranking website, rather than the amount.  You can find out more about using guest posts to your advantage by looking at the following video. Further reading on the benefits of guest posting can be found at here.

Content Marketing Strategies to Boost Your Business

business-boost-logo-webThe Internet has become our number one source of information, so it is no wonder that businesses are paying more attention to the content of their websites, social media, blogs etc. When you are sitting with your friends and someone poses a question, what is the first response people have? It’s usually ‘I’ll Google it.’ Informative and up-to-date content is the reason why consumers will be attracted to your website in the first instance and will keep coming back for more. There are various content marketing strategies you can implement in order to boost your business results. This video will tell you a bit more about content marketing strategies and how to make them as effective as possible.

 

 

  • Unique

One of the most important content marketing strategies is to ensure all your content is unique and not a replicate of any other work you have seen. People want to read fresh and interesting news, they don’t want to read content they already found elsewhere two months ago, so resist the temptation to do this. It is perfectly acceptable to take bits and pieces from other relevant articles you have read, but always put your own spin on it and make it as unique as you possibly can.

 

  • Invest

In order to get results from your content marketing strategy, you will have to expect to invest a lot of time and money into it. If you don’t have the time to keep on top of your content marketing, you should hire an agency with the expertise to do it. You don’t just need to consider the quality of your content but also how to incorporate SEO and to improve your ranking on Google. All of these aspects have to be taken into account as part of your content marketing strategy and it is not always easy to do this without some good investment.  You can read more about web content and SEO by reading the following article.

 

  • Regular

If you want to operate a successful marketing strategy, you will have to ensure you update your content on a regular basis. If you remain static it will not only affect your Google ranking, but it will also put off your potential customers. If you don’t have the time or resources to do this yourself, you will need to hire an external agency to take care of it, as it is vital as part of your marketing campaign. You should aim to update your web content on a weekly basis at least, more frequent if possible.

 

  • Imagine

You need to use your imagination when implementing your content marketing strategy. Instead of thinking about what you would like to read about or what your colleagues may be interested in, try to put yourself in the shoes of the consumers. Consider what is relevant to them and how you can engage their interest. If you are not quite sure where to begin with this, you can always conduct some market research to get a better insight. Again, you may want to invest some time and money into this and this may be in the form of an external agency that has more expertise.

The Importance of Effective Content Management and Marketing for your Website

A website is only as good as its content and tired, old and irrelevant copy and media will not help with SEO or encourage lead generation. Effective content management is what is needed to succeed.

 

Content-MarketingThe majority of businesses have a website. Some are better designed than others however even ones made with a free template will do the trick provided that all of the boxes are ticked with regards to design, usability and of course the quality of the content.

 

Tired web copy, out of date blogs and pictures that are well past their sell by date do not inspire visitors and will add a negative edge to the brand identity that has taken so long to build. The way to really make your website work for you is to have a content management system which is current, up to date, focussed on the brand message and engages with the public.

 

  • Focus on Different Website Types

Deploying an effective content management system does not mean that every three weeks you need to rewrite your static pages such as your “About Us” or “FAQ” sections. These do need to be periodically updated, especially when changes to your business or terms and conditions come into force. This content is however less important in terms of being updated very regularly to keep it fresh though should always be relevant and up to date.
Dynamic pages which might include your blog, special offer pages, news updates and similar do need special attention as these are the places that people will look first for what they need.

 

  • Consider Media Types

Lots of text is fine when it is needed. Some visitors however don’t want to feel they are sitting down to a lengthy article in the Times when all they want to know what the business is up to nowadays. Keep web copy brief, break it up, and use audio, visual and interactive content types to display information in an alternative way which grabs the attention and keeps people’s interest. From a content marketing point of view it is much easier and indeed fruitful to share attention grabbing content than it is plain blog post after blog post.

 

  • Be Consistent

When you refresh your content do make sure that new posts and information are grammatically correct, engaging, brand orientated and fit well with the overall tone of voice that the reader expects from your brand. Many business owners hire copywriters either in-house or as a freelancer to produce ghost written copy on a regular basis in order to keep content fresh and SEO optimised.

 

  • Structure Your Content Marketing to Allow Flexibility for Current Events

 

Having scheduled blog posts, tweets, updates and more may be advantageous in terms of organisation and maximising exposure however do allow for some flexibility so that your business may benefit from special events that are out in the public eye. The recent birth of the new royal baby is a great example as many businesses used the announcement to launch a sale, offer congratulations to the happy couple and similar. Those who did not missed out on a valuable marketing experience.

 

With a little forward planning your content marketing campaign will completely alter the effectiveness or your business website or blog to your advantage.

 

Written by Duncan Cumming