Weekly Roundup #86 - SEO Content, The Answer Box & Uber Retargeting
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Weekly Roundup #86 – SEO Content, The Answer Box & Uber Retargeting

Summary:

Before reading this weeks blog, might we suggest catching up on last weeks where we took a look at ways to improve customer experience, how to improve UX for mobile apps and what eye tracking has revealed to advertising giants. Afterwards you can read the newest roundup of whats happening in the world of digital advertising…

 

How to: Keywords and SEO Content Strategy

In order to drive consistent organic traffic to your site it is imperative to publish SEO content, meaning that your content is designed to rank highly. SEO content is effective at gaining organic traffic because it’s strategic – by targeting topics that have a proven search demand you can promote your products and services…

It is vital to target the right content topics, and furthermore you want to target the topics that are fueled by relevant, intent-driven keywords with proven search demand. We take a look at how to find the right keywords, and how to turn them into unmissable, high-ranking SEO content that will bring growth and traffic to your site.

Finding Your Keywords

Keywords are essential to your strategy for several reasons – they inform topics, they gauge demand and they help you to understand the searchers intent. Additionally, keywords give a measure for how likely your content is to rank highly – as the greater the monthly search volume, the harder it will be to rank for that keyword, so you can work out if you will be able to outrank your competitors before you set out to do so. This means that you can prioritize your content topics according to the popularity of your keywords, and you can track your rankings for your keywords as a way to evaluate how your content is performing in the SERPs.

Finding and using the correct keywords for your business is the most important element of your SEO content strategy, so with that in mind we list some of the best tools for keyword research. As a general rule, use Google Keyword Planner for the bulk of your research, which can be cross examined for additional ideas with one other tool from the list. Use these resources to find keywords that are relevant to your product and your target audience:

  • Google Keyword Planner
  • Google Search Console
  • Google Trends
  • Google Auto Suggest
  • Moz Keyword Explorer
  • Moz Keyword Difficulty Tool
  • Ahrefs Keywords Explorer
  • SEMrush Keyword Research
  • KeywordTool.io
  • GrepWords
  • Ubersuggest
  • Term Explorer
  • KWfinder
  • Serpstat
  • Bing Webmaster

Another way to find keywords is to analyse your competitors’ sites. By doing this you can see which keywords they are targeting and which of those are the top performers that drive the most SEO traffic.

It is worth noting that keyword research is a time consuming task, so it is advisable to cast a wide net in order to gather as many relevant keywords as possible as this will give you more topic opportunities. Make sure to stay organised during the process – create a system in order to manage your keywords that allows you to group, refine and iterate the large and expansive list into core groups of your strongest keywords.

Refining Your Keywords

To begin, take the most relevant, core keywords for your company and run them through a keyword planner. This will result in a list of related search terms as well as the amount of monthly searches each term receives – copy and paste this information into a document or spreadsheet with a dedicated tab labelled for that keyword.

Focus on search volume to start with – as it is the most important KPI in SEO content strategy – however, it is also interesting to note the keyword difficulty. Keyword difficulty can be found using Ahrefs Keyword Explorer or Moz Keyword Difficulty, and you should look for keywords that have a combination of not too much competition and not too little search demand.

Having cast a wide net when researching your keywords, it is essential to review the results and to remove any keywords that aren’t relevant, that are too broad or general or that are too competitive. Other keyword that should be removed are those that are job-hunting related, salary-focused or keywords that are branded.

Keywords into Content

With a refined list of relevant keywords, it is now time to brainstorm topic and content ideas. The majority of search queries are informational – where the user is looking for facts or an answer to a question – and as such, Google gives this type of content priority on its SERPs, so this is the type of content you should focus on. To choose the right form that your content should take you should research the current SERP results for each keyword in order to determine what type of content is preferred (and add this information to your document or spreadsheet). User intent is also an important factor in deciding what type or form of content will be most successful.

User Intent

When deciding on the content types and topics remember: match informational keywords to information seeking topics and match transactional keywords to transactional content topics. To understand if a keyword is informational or transactional, search the current SERPs to see what type of information is returned in the results – and these results will determine what type of content you should be producing.

Once you know what type of content you should produce for a keyword it is important to be clear and concise – meaning that you should really only target one core keyword and two or three very closely related variations of that keyword in each piece of content. Any more keywords or variations will confuse the search engines, meaning that your content will not rank as highly on the SERPs.

Your keyword research will be a source of inspiration for your content – your competitors sites can be too, as it is a good strategy to replicate their content topics that had a proven record of performing well. There are also tools to help with SEO content ideas, which include BuzzSumo, Answer the Public, BloomBerry, FAQ Fox and Autosuggest Keyword Tool.

Prioritising Your Keywords

In order to prioritise your content topics you should consider the audience interest, the search demand, the level of difficulty and your objectives and goals. These are pretty straightforward and should create a list of prioritised content ideas that are most suitable for your brand.

An effective SEO content strategy is the key to regular, consistent and growing organic traffic, so make sure to follow our advice, tips and tricks for an improved digital presence.

See More At The Digital Examiner

Google: Featured Snippet and ‘People also Ask’

People also Ask Google Digital Marketing

Just when you have completed your basic search engine optimisation (SEO) and have successfully found yourself in the top 5 results on the search engine results page (SERP), they change the rules! The featured snippet and ‘People also ask’ feature from Google mean that there is now an even higher ranking to aim for…

The featured snippet, or answer box, provides a summarized answer to the user’s search query and is often referred to as ‘Position Zero’ as it appears in large font at the very top of the SERP. The snippet includes a brief answer to the query, a linked page title and the page URL, which is great exposure.

‘People also ask’ is a feature that is found just below the featured snippet, and lists further questions that are relevant to the original search query. Should you click on one of these questions the answer is revealed on that page, and further questions are added to the bottom of the list. The ‘People also ask’ feature has the potential to grow and grow, meaning that the organic listings get pushed further and further from the top of the screen.

Interestingly, the answers to the ‘People also ask’ questions come up as the featured snippet if you directly google that enquiry, which suggests that there is a link between the ‘People also ask’ results and the featured snippets. A recent Ahrefs study looked at the featured snippet, and noticed that content can rank for many featured snippets – in fact, the top performing page in the Ahrefs database had 4,658 featured snippets for a single page.

This page – and the site as a whole – had a writing style that may explain its popularity within the featured snippet. Writing in short, practical sentences with paragraphs often being just one sentence, the site had made itself snippet-friendly as it is easy for the search engine algorithm to read and digest the information…

Optimising for Google’s Answer Box

There is some guidance on optimizing your content for the featured snippets, which we break down here:

  1. Make sure that your content is already in the top five results on the SERP for the targeted search query.
  2. Take a look at the current featured snippet and use it as a template for your own – make sure to create a better answer that summarizes both the question and answer as this is a great opportunity to usurp those with stronger results to ‘position zero’.
  3. Match the format of your content with the format of the current snippet – if you are targeting a snippet that has a paragraph then aim for a short, 40-50 word paragraph that includes the question and, of course, a summarised answer. If the snippet has a table or list then format your content to match this.

By using the ‘Fetch as Google’ feature in Google Search Console you can track how the changes that you are making to your site affect your ranking, and whether you have made it to ‘position zero’…

These tips will greatly improve your chances of getting the top spot on the SERP, however, do not forget the SEO basics as you must be high ranking to have any chance of being the featured snippet.

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How to Craft the Perfect ‘Abandoned Cart’ Email

Reducing cart abandonment is one of the top priorities for any eCommerce website development, and a cart abandonment email can be a very effective weapon in your arsenal. We take a look at some brilliant examples in order to inspire your own cart abandonment email…

“A gentle reminder… Remember you have the following fabulous items still in your shopping bag. Log into your account to shop them now.”

This gentle and friendly reminder from Net-a-Porter is followed by 6 reasons to shop on their site, which is a great way to remind customers of the top-notch service that they provide.

Kate Spade takes the opportunity to remind the potential customer that there are no shipping costs and returns are also free which may remove one of the main barriers to a sale. Levi’s offers a 25% discount for a limited amount of time in order to encourage a sale, whilst asos creates a sense of urgency through the clever copywriting that accompanies a large image of the abandoned item(s), “I’m waiting in your saved items. Snap me up before I’m gone.”

Bonobos has a more unique approach to the abandoned cart email – their attention catching headline and image is followed by copy that focuses on offering help to the customer, which has a strong sense of authenticity. A clear call-to-action is placed at the bottom of the fun, engaging and authentic email.

Adidas has created a cart abandonment email that speaks directly to its audience with its tagline, “We know you hate to lose. Anything.” The humorous and personal email creates a sense of urgency and successfully continues the brand’s tone. Another example of an email that continues the brand’s tone of voice is Nasty Gal, that uses the line, “I want you to want me” to appeal to their customers sense of humour.

To summarize, a great abandoned cart email requires you to know your audience, to personalise your message and to add value without annoying your customer. Knowing your audience will come about by learning as much about them as possible – their language, habits and the best time to contact them via email – think like your consumer in order to maximise your conversion rate. Try to avoid annoying your customer with constant emails – finding the right timeframe within which to contact them is vital. The first email can be sent 24 hours after the incomplete purchase, with a second after 36-48 hours.

Personalising your emails can be done in several ways, so start by segmenting your customers and creating different emails for each segment. Change the copy, image, call to action and layout of your email, as the increased relevancy will ensure that the emails are most effective. Ensure that the copy is not sales-focused as it has been shown to be off-putting and therefore achieves a lower conversion rate than informative, fun copy.

One of the best ways to increase conversion rates from abandoned carts is to create copy that seems to offer genuine help and value. Discount codes, free shipping and additional customer support make the customer feel valued, so make sure to offer something in your email. Automation can also be a great help in increasing the conversion rate as it will make the process more seamless, quick and efficient. A series of 2-3 emails can be sent in a specific timeframe for each customer which will be able to follow each of the above rules and should see good returns.

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Uber: The Evolution of Retargeting

Uber remarketing

It has been discovered that there is a disconnect between the rise in mobile internet use, and the low levels of conversions on mobiles. Only 1.5% of people on mobile convert the first time that that visit a website, which is compared to 4% on desktop. This is fascinating because 2016 was the first year that more people used mobile devices than desktops in order to access the internet, with 20% of millennials going mobile only.

In combination, these two figures suggest that digital marketers are not taking mobile seriously enough, often using retargeting techniques that are annoying, foster negative feelings and encourage many to install an ad blocker…

Uber is an interesting example of how to successfully get people to convert on a mobile device. It is safe to assume that people click on the Uber app because they want an Uber – which one can then assume means that their conversion rate is far, far higher than 1.5%. Visiting a website and converting there is clearly different to visiting an app, which is why Uber does so well from its app-only system.

For Uber, retargeting ads through cost per click (CPC) and cost per thousand impressions (CPM) is irrelevant – instead, cost per install (CPI) is key. Furthermore, instead of pushing retargeting ads at people who have visited their site, Uber gets its own users to retarget to potential customers, which is encouraged with discounts and incentives for both parties. Uber’s strategy is still retargeting, however it has evolved to better serve their brand and their customers…

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The Role of Good Design in Improving AI

Google launched People + AI Research (PAIR) as a way to establish design principles for AI systems, as a way to improve AI as it moves from the research lab into real-life products. At the first PAIR conference earlier this week, a panel of researchers discussed some of the problems that AI is currently facing and how good design could solve them…

Karrie Karahalious, Professor of Computer Science at the University of Illinois has performed research into the folk stories that people tell themselves about their Facebook News Feeds. People tend to come up with theories about who, why, what and how often they see information in their newsfeeds – believing that, for example, if you visit a person’s Facebook profile a lot you will see more of their posts, and that you will see more posts from people who have similar interests and friends to you.

As neither of these assumptions are true, Karahalious concluded that these folk stories come about as a way of helping us to understand the system that controls our newsfeeds, and to some extent, our lives. As a way to combat the myths and suspicions around people’s Facebook feeds, Karahalious created a tool that shows people the inner workings, and the algorithms behind their newsfeeds.

The transparency that this tool offered to its users evoked more satisfaction from them – the people in the study were generally happy with the algorithm’s decisions, and they had increased trust in the brand. With their improved understanding of the algorithm, users also felt that they wanted more control over the content that they were being fed, which is where designers come into play. In conclusion, designers should be looking to build interfaces that firstly make the AI’s decisions and reasoning very clear and understandable, and should then include mechanisms for control and feedback.

Another issue that was raised is that currently only the technology is driving the development of AI. Jess Holbrook, UX Lead for Google’s machine learning research group, thinks that better AI-based products would be made if designers were more integral to the process…

“What if we started to take what we’ve used in the UX field for a long time and we approach machine learning development through that lens?” asks Holbrook.

His idea is to start each project with a problem rather than a technology – development would only be started once it has been seen that machine learning will really solve that problem. Holbrook believes that designers should be present at each stage, from when the data set is first analysed through to the final stages of UX.

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by:

Sebastian Paszek

Marketing manager

Controlling the chaos of the digital landscape, Sebastian is a multiplatform executive, project manager and photographer.