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Search Marketing for
Travel.
Your digital growth partner.
Organic & Paid
Search - The
Fundamentals.
Your digital growth partner.
— SEO & PPC - understanding the basics
— The importance of SEO and content marketing
— The changing nature of SEO & opportunities for
travel businesses
— Ad vs content ratio
Agenda.
Your digital growth partner.
— Understanding basic concepts behind SEO & PPC
— Gaining an intro to key concepts for content
marketing
— Understanding ways to ‘move the needle’ when it
comes to SEO in the travel market
— Understanding best practices for ads, and how we
can ensure we’re following best practice
Learning Objectives.
Your digital growth partner.
SEO - Intro.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Input
Output
Algorithms
Crawling
Your digital growth partner.
Indexing Ranking
Crawling
Your digital growth partner.
Indexing Ranking
Crawling
Your digital growth partner.
Indexing Ranking
Crawling
Your digital growth partner.
Indexing Ranking
PPC.
Paid search advertising has a similar result as
SEO, in the sense that the ultimate goal is the
same. To capture relevant traffic (and
conversions) for our websites.
Your digital growth partner.
The difference is that with PPC, you pay to
appear in the search results, and you can
choose exactly what phrases and words you
want to appear for.
Your digital growth partner.
PPC.
Your digital growth partner.
PPC offers much more control over targeting
and enables you to appear for your desired
keywords and searches almost instantly, but it
comes at a (financial) cost.
PPC.
Crawling
Your digital growth partner.
Indexing Ranking
How do SEO & PPC Fit Together?
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Create efficiencies
through sharing of tasks
(keyword research,
audience research etc).
How do SEO & PPC Fit Together?
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Save money on
expensive terms.
How do SEO & PPC Fit Together?
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Expedite growth
through a constantly
moving strategy.
How do SEO & PPC Fit Together?
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Search Strategy
Combined Search
Combined Search
Keyword Targeting
SERP Optimisation
Data Sharing &
Testing
Intent Driven
Search Strategy
SEO PPC
● Crawling, Indexing & Ranking Approach
● Topic Clustering & Semantic
Optimisation
● Technical SEO, Content Optimisation &
PR Focusses.
● Branded search campaigns
● Non-brand search campaigns
● Google shopping campaigns
● Display remarketing campaigns
● Display user acquisition campaigns
● Video awareness campaigns
Our PPC and SEO team work with you to
understand your commercial goals and
keyword objectives.
We then plan which search terms we’ll need
to have improved visibility for, if we’re going
to encourage more users to your site, to buy
your products.
If we don’t have any existing search presence
there at all, our PPC team will build a campaign
around this, ensuring your brand has
immediately visibility for that term.
Whilst our PPC campaign is running for your
search term, our SEO team are working to
ensure your website is suitably optimised to
appear for this term. This is a long-term
process, and could take some time.
We begin to see your organic search listings
appear on Google and climb up the rankings.
We review this continually to see how organic
search performance increases.
Once we’ve reached a comfortable level with
our organic search listing (for example, position
#1) we take a ‘benchmark’ to see how much
traffic we’re getting from both the organic and
paid search listing for that term, and the total
advertising cost.
We then begin to trial restricting the PPC ad
spend for this term, all the while keeping an
eye on those traffic levels, before looking to
move away altogether.
We can then utilise this PPC spend to move
onto another search term that your brand
doesn’t yet have an organic presence for, and
the whole cycle begins again!
Combined Search
Process
Your digital growth partner.
SEO & Content Marketing.
How to get the greatest ROI.
Best-in-class content:
— Engages users
— Positions your brand effectively
— Gains traction with wider sites (useful for link building)
— Guides users to a particular action
— Generates an ROI
Your digital growth partner.
Rules to live by.
We’ll go into copywriting in more detail later, but first we’re going to
touch on some general rules which will help you to create efficiencies
in your SEO & content marketing campaigns to gain the best ROI.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
1. Quality >
Quantity.
Your digital growth partner.
2. Start with
your
audience.
Your digital growth partner.
3. Divide &
Conquer.
Your digital growth partner.
4. Structure is
everything.
How has SEO changed, and where are the
opportunities for travel businesses?
Your digital growth partner.
The travel market is an
anomaly.
Your digital growth partner.
Competitor landing
pages still work.
Your digital growth partner.
RIP Sponsored Posts.
Your digital growth partner.
The opportunity lies in
proposition.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
“...there is no question that this is a new
type of algorithm update that aims at ad
heavy, low value content created with the
purpose of generating ad revenue.”
Search Engine Roundtable, commenting on the FRED Update
Ad vs content ratio.
Your digital growth partner.
Google’s Fred update actively penalises sites with poor quality
content or heavy/interruptive usage of ads on pages.
The best way to achieve the perfect medium is to refer to the Better
Ads Standards, which give you the exact guidelines to ensure that
you’re not falling foul of ad guidelines for your content.
Key
takeaways.
1. SEO involves controlling what we feed in to
Google’s algorithms
2. PPC enables you to appear for your desired
keywords and searches almost instantly
3. The best way to get value out of PPC & SEO is to
run them as ‘search’
4. Quality, targeted content is better than quantity
5. We should all be following the Better Ads
guidelines where possible
Your digital growth partner.
Content Strategy.
Creating unique, engaging
and relevant content.
Your digital growth partner.
— Understanding core copywriting principles
— Learning how to perform basic keyword research
— Understanding how to optimise for YouTube
— Understanding how to roll out personalisation on
your site
Learning Objectives.
Your digital growth partner.
— Copywriting - top tips
— Latest on keyword research
— YouTube optimisation
— Personalisation & Retention
— Blogs & website content
Agenda.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Each piece of content you
create should have...
— A clear audience
— A focus on topic & key terms
— An easy to follow, logical written structure
— A place in your site structure
— A goal/key take-out
Ultimately, writing great content comes down to being able to...
Your digital growth partner.
...tell a story.
Your digital growth partner.
Don’t
— Focus just on your product/service
— Over exaggerate
— Over use exclamation marks
— Patronise readers
— Write without your user’s vocabulary
in mind
Your digital growth partner.
Do
— Always check spelling & grammar
— Speak the language of your user
— Back information up with data where
applicable
— Focus on the user - speak to their
context & not your service - be helpful
— Read your copy back (multiple times,
out loud)
𐄂
✓
Research is key.
The dos and don’ts that we’ve just been through all broadly
relate to one thing - knowing your user inside and out.
Creating an avatar is a good first step, but to create highly
effective copy, you should also:
— Collect feedback from them to gain a deeper
understanding
— Analyse the way they speak using their interactions
at various touch points
Your digital growth partner.
Keyword
research.
Your digital growth partner.
Keyword research is the process of finding the right
keywords that you’d like your site to appear for in
search results.
When researching keywords, we need to pay attention to:
Your digital growth partner.
Search Volume
(how many times they’re
searched per month)
Intent Relevance to your
product / service / brand
Competition
Level
Challenging the norm.
Keyword research isn’t as simple as it used to be. It’s now
less about individual keywords, and more about topics.
As natural language processing has evolved, so has our
need to think of more than just keywords. One of the
biggest shifts has been towards the use of co-occurrence
for keyword research.
Your digital growth partner.
Co-occurrence refers to keywords and phrases that are often
seen used in close proximity to each other in content.
Search engines identify phrases that are frequently used
together and use this as part of their algorithms.
To put this simply, search engines will expect to see certain
phrases grouped together for certain topics. If these are not
seen grouped together, they may see content as less relevant.
Your digital growth partner.
Co-occurrence.
Tools of the trade.
Your digital growth partner.
Everybody researches
keywords differently...
My research methodology is quite simple:
1. Identify your tool of choice
2. Consider top level keywords/topics that you want to go after -
perform keyword research for each of these
3. Break your top level topics into silos, then research queries for
those silos
4. Map keywords to intent, and therefore type of page they’ll need
5. Map their place in the site structure
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube
Optimisation.
Your digital growth partner.
You might already know...
… that YouTube’s algorithms are somewhat akin to Google’s earlier search
algorithms. They still place heavy importance on:
Your digital growth partner.
Keywords in titles
and descriptions
Click through rates
on videos
Session duration /
watch time
User engagement
Your digital growth partner.
View velocity
View velocity refers to how quickly users view your content after it has
been published. It has been proved to have the largest impact on
video rankings.
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube Keyword Research.
YouTube keyword research isn’t too dissimilar from traditional
keyword research. To find your target keywords, you still
have to research:
— Search volumes
— Related keywords
— Search intent
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube Keyword Research - Platforms.
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube Optimisation Tips -
Keywords.
— Use your keyword in your title, and keep it
under 60 characters
— Use keywords & related keywords in your
description
— Use VidIQ to find related tags for top ranking
videos for your keywords, assess search
volume for each and include the better ones
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube Optimisation Tips -
Engagement.
— Create a thumbnail that matches your title to encourage CTR
— Keep users on YouTube through end cards, series playlists and
suggestions in videos
— Promote your videos as much as possible across all platforms
— Hook users in your first 20 seconds - it’s the same concept as
headlines & leads in on page copy
— Plan your videos thoroughly - poorly planned content struggles
to keep users’ attention
— Edit your videos with different cuts, transitions & visual effects
to keep viewer interest
Your digital growth partner.
Why just stop at YouTube?
Your digital growth partner.
YouTube videos aren’t just discoverable through YouTube - they’re also visible in Google Search.
Optimise for them here too by:
Analysing SERPs for your target keyword. If it contains a video - there’s an opportunity
Analyse keywords/competitors for these videos, and create video content to replicate their success
Personalisation
and Retention.
Your digital growth partner.
Direct address always wins the game.
Personalisation gives us the opportunity to:
Your digital growth partner.
Speak directly to our
audience.
Connect with our audience on a
deeper level through contextual
references.
Personalisation Technologies.
Your digital growth partner.
But we shouldn’t always
rely on automation.
Your digital growth partner.
Blogs and
website content.
Your digital growth partner.
Landing pages or blogs?
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to when to use blogs or
landing pages, but my personal preference is:
Your digital growth partner.
Landing pages
for evergreen, bigger
content.
Blogs / Posts
for reactive / topical content.
Featured
snippets.
Your digital growth partner.
What is a featured snippet?
Your digital growth partner.
Featured snippets are used to describe the prominent answer boxes that provide
snippets of content from a site directly in search results.
They usually appear in direct response to a query, and have been nicknamed
‘position 0’ by many in the industry.
Why do they matter?
Your digital growth partner.
How to optimise for them.
Your digital growth partner.
— Research potential featured snippets, and take note of
the structure present for each (is is free form content?
Bulleted lists? A table?)
— For each query you’re trying to achieve a snippet for,
ensure that you are 100% in tune with the intent
— Use schema markup
— Test consistently
— Cut out ambiguation - use NLP to help with this &
define clear relationships between concepts & entities
Introducing...
Your digital growth partner.
Natural Language Processing.
Your digital growth partner.
Beyond keywords.
Natural language processing takes content analysis to a
whole new level.
We used to be able to get away with researching related
keywords for text, now we have to do more.
Ditch the keyword-only focus, start focusing on topics,
entities and relationships in your content.
Your digital growth partner.
Google’s NLP API
Google’s NLP API has a demo aspect that allows you to
subject individual pieces of content to natural language
processing algorithms.
It’s a one-at-a-time process, but it can be opened in
multiple tabs and used as a comparison tool (albeit a clunky
one).
Your digital growth partner.
Key
takeaways.
1. Traditional copywriting can teach us a lot about
how to write content for web
2. Keyword research is more than just picking the
most searched for keywords
3. YouTube optimisation is based on keywords and
engagement - not dissimilar to search
4. Personalisation should be achieved through a
mixture of tech and copywriting
5. Pages are easier to optimise than posts, so
should be used for your most important content
Your digital growth partner.
Interactive Exercise
The NLP tool in action.
Your digital growth partner.
Technical SEO
Best Practices.
Your digital growth partner.
— To understand how to structure your site effectively
— To understand the basic concepts of mobile first
SEO
— To change our perceptions of crawl budget, and
how to understand/optimise it
Learning Objectives.
Your digital growth partner.
Website structure.
Site structure is an often overlooked, but an extremely important part of technical SEO.
Google is an information retrieval system at its core, and information retrieval systems rely
on logical structures and content groupings to gain a deeper understanding of data.
Your digital growth partner.
Data points needed.
Your digital growth partner.
Site structure should never be an afterthought, and it
should never be implemented without research. The
two key areas you must explore first are:
— Your target keywords & their ‘children’
— Competitor site structures
Keywords.
In an ideal world, keyword research would be conducted
in full before any site structure is planned & finalised.
It’s not good enough to guess - map out all of your
potential keywords, understand the terms that relate to
them and could be seen as ‘children’, and structure your
site accordingly.
Unfortunately, most keyword research is done
retroactively, so where do we go from there?
Your digital growth partner.
Competitors.
Competitor research is a key part of most areas of SEO.
Search engines deal with algorithms, and naturally there
will be some competitors that satisfy these algorithms
better than others.
Let go of your perceived competitors, and open your mind
to those ranking for your target terms. Treat this on a
SERP by SERP basis and reverse engineer.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
An ontology encompasses a representation, formal
naming and definition of the categories, properties and
relations between the concepts, data and entities that
substantiate one, many or all domains of discourse.
Ontology • noun
Your digital growth partner.
Something to note about ontologies is that they don’t always stay static.
Relationships between entities evolve, and new ones are discovered over time.
It’s also unlikely that you’ll 100% nail your site structure with your first attempt.
Test absolutely everything.
Mobile First.
Your digital growth partner.
What is it?
Mobile first indexing refers to Google moving
away from their historic model of using
desktop content for indexing and ranking.
With the rise of smartphone usage, it now
makes sense for Google to use mobile
content for this instead.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Dec 18
50% indexed
As of December 18, Google confirm that
around 50% of the web have been switched to
mobile first indexing.
Jul 19
Mobile first indexing for all new sites
Google announce that as of July 1st, 2019, all
new sites will automatically be indexed using
mobile first.
March 18
Mobile First Index rolls out
After testing in December 2017, the mobile first
index rolls out to a small batch of ‘mobile
friendly’ sites.
Jul 18
Speed update
Google roll out the mobile speed update,
designed to impact only the slowest loading
mobile sites
Mobile first timeline.
Who should, and
shouldn’t worry (as much)
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Shouldn’t worry
— Responsive sites
Should maybe worry
— M dot domains
— Dynamically served sites
Beyond the panic.
Fundamentally, mobile first index doesn’t really change
the way in which we should think about SEO:
— Users still come first
— Relevance is still a factor
— Algorithms still look for the same signals
Your digital growth partner.
Page speeds.
Site speed has always been a factor for desktop, so it’s
unsurprising that it is for mobile.
Google’s mobile speed update only affected the slowest of
sites, but we should always try to make our mobile sites as
fast as possible regardless.
The best way to audit site speed on mobile for the biggest
gains is through Google Lighthouse.
Your digital growth partner.
AMP and PWAs.
If you’re looking to further optimise your site speed,
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) can sometimes be a
good option. If you’re using WordPress, there are many
plugins that can help to implement this.
If you want to take your site to the next level, then
PWAs (Progressive Web Apps) are where you should
be looking to.
Your digital growth partner.
Crawl Budget.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
If you ask Google...
Your digital growth partner.
If you ask
SEOs...
Your digital growth partner.
So, we need to change our
understanding.
Your digital growth partner.
Start with log files.
For any technical SEO, log files are an absolute must have piece of data.
Log files, or web server log files are records of the interactions that user
agents have with your website, and are stored on your server.
They can tell you who visited your site, when they visited, how they got
there, and much more.
They do need to be configured correctly, and this is something that your
web team can help you with.
Your digital growth partner.
Your digital growth partner.
Screaming Frog
Log File Analyser.
Your digital growth partner.
Screaming Frog Log File Analyser is one of the best, and
most cost effective log file analysis tools available.
It allows you to turn those log files into something
digestible, and to create actionable next steps from the
data that they provide.
Bonus...
Screaming Frog Log File Analyser integrates seamlessly
with their SEO Spider tool, and you can match URL data
with log files.
Connect the SEO Spider with GA, GSC and other APIs,
and you have a completely full picture of all of the URLs
on your site.
Your digital growth partner.
Log file analysis basics
Your digital growth partner.
— 404s and 500s
— Frequently crawled URLs
— Page size comparisons
— Traffic & bot correlation
— Log file & URL data discrepancies
Understand your directives.
Your digital growth partner.
Things that don’t affect crawl budget:
— Noindex tags
— Canonical tags
Things that do affect crawl budget:
— Robots.txt rules
— Redirects/htaccess file rules
𐄂
✓
Shift away from crawl budget, and
towards crawl efficiency.
Your digital growth partner.
Key
takeaways.
Your digital growth partner.
1. Site structure should be planned using
keywords and competitor research
2. Planning a site structure is all about creating
relationships
3. Mobile first isn’t as scary as you might think
4. Crawl budget is ‘overrated’
5. Log file analysis doesn’t have to be overly
technical
Thank You.
Your digital growth partner.

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Search Marketing For Travel - ABTA | 2019

  • 1. Search Marketing for Travel. Your digital growth partner.
  • 2. Organic & Paid Search - The Fundamentals. Your digital growth partner.
  • 3. — SEO & PPC - understanding the basics — The importance of SEO and content marketing — The changing nature of SEO & opportunities for travel businesses — Ad vs content ratio Agenda. Your digital growth partner.
  • 4. — Understanding basic concepts behind SEO & PPC — Gaining an intro to key concepts for content marketing — Understanding ways to ‘move the needle’ when it comes to SEO in the travel market — Understanding best practices for ads, and how we can ensure we’re following best practice Learning Objectives. Your digital growth partner.
  • 5. SEO - Intro. Your digital growth partner. Your digital growth partner. Input Output Algorithms
  • 6. Crawling Your digital growth partner. Indexing Ranking
  • 7. Crawling Your digital growth partner. Indexing Ranking
  • 8. Crawling Your digital growth partner. Indexing Ranking
  • 9. Crawling Your digital growth partner. Indexing Ranking
  • 10. PPC. Paid search advertising has a similar result as SEO, in the sense that the ultimate goal is the same. To capture relevant traffic (and conversions) for our websites. Your digital growth partner.
  • 11. The difference is that with PPC, you pay to appear in the search results, and you can choose exactly what phrases and words you want to appear for. Your digital growth partner. PPC.
  • 12. Your digital growth partner. PPC offers much more control over targeting and enables you to appear for your desired keywords and searches almost instantly, but it comes at a (financial) cost. PPC.
  • 13. Crawling Your digital growth partner. Indexing Ranking
  • 14. How do SEO & PPC Fit Together? Your digital growth partner. Your digital growth partner.
  • 15. Create efficiencies through sharing of tasks (keyword research, audience research etc). How do SEO & PPC Fit Together? Your digital growth partner. Your digital growth partner.
  • 16. Save money on expensive terms. How do SEO & PPC Fit Together? Your digital growth partner. Your digital growth partner.
  • 17. Expedite growth through a constantly moving strategy. How do SEO & PPC Fit Together? Your digital growth partner. Your digital growth partner.
  • 18. Your digital growth partner. Search Strategy Combined Search Combined Search Keyword Targeting SERP Optimisation Data Sharing & Testing Intent Driven Search Strategy SEO PPC ● Crawling, Indexing & Ranking Approach ● Topic Clustering & Semantic Optimisation ● Technical SEO, Content Optimisation & PR Focusses. ● Branded search campaigns ● Non-brand search campaigns ● Google shopping campaigns ● Display remarketing campaigns ● Display user acquisition campaigns ● Video awareness campaigns
  • 19. Our PPC and SEO team work with you to understand your commercial goals and keyword objectives. We then plan which search terms we’ll need to have improved visibility for, if we’re going to encourage more users to your site, to buy your products. If we don’t have any existing search presence there at all, our PPC team will build a campaign around this, ensuring your brand has immediately visibility for that term. Whilst our PPC campaign is running for your search term, our SEO team are working to ensure your website is suitably optimised to appear for this term. This is a long-term process, and could take some time. We begin to see your organic search listings appear on Google and climb up the rankings. We review this continually to see how organic search performance increases. Once we’ve reached a comfortable level with our organic search listing (for example, position #1) we take a ‘benchmark’ to see how much traffic we’re getting from both the organic and paid search listing for that term, and the total advertising cost. We then begin to trial restricting the PPC ad spend for this term, all the while keeping an eye on those traffic levels, before looking to move away altogether. We can then utilise this PPC spend to move onto another search term that your brand doesn’t yet have an organic presence for, and the whole cycle begins again! Combined Search Process Your digital growth partner.
  • 20. SEO & Content Marketing. How to get the greatest ROI. Best-in-class content: — Engages users — Positions your brand effectively — Gains traction with wider sites (useful for link building) — Guides users to a particular action — Generates an ROI Your digital growth partner.
  • 21. Rules to live by. We’ll go into copywriting in more detail later, but first we’re going to touch on some general rules which will help you to create efficiencies in your SEO & content marketing campaigns to gain the best ROI. Your digital growth partner.
  • 22. Your digital growth partner. 1. Quality > Quantity.
  • 23. Your digital growth partner. 2. Start with your audience.
  • 24. Your digital growth partner. 3. Divide & Conquer.
  • 25. Your digital growth partner. 4. Structure is everything.
  • 26. How has SEO changed, and where are the opportunities for travel businesses? Your digital growth partner.
  • 27. The travel market is an anomaly. Your digital growth partner.
  • 28. Competitor landing pages still work. Your digital growth partner.
  • 29. RIP Sponsored Posts. Your digital growth partner.
  • 30. The opportunity lies in proposition. Your digital growth partner.
  • 31. Your digital growth partner. “...there is no question that this is a new type of algorithm update that aims at ad heavy, low value content created with the purpose of generating ad revenue.” Search Engine Roundtable, commenting on the FRED Update
  • 32. Ad vs content ratio. Your digital growth partner. Google’s Fred update actively penalises sites with poor quality content or heavy/interruptive usage of ads on pages. The best way to achieve the perfect medium is to refer to the Better Ads Standards, which give you the exact guidelines to ensure that you’re not falling foul of ad guidelines for your content.
  • 33. Key takeaways. 1. SEO involves controlling what we feed in to Google’s algorithms 2. PPC enables you to appear for your desired keywords and searches almost instantly 3. The best way to get value out of PPC & SEO is to run them as ‘search’ 4. Quality, targeted content is better than quantity 5. We should all be following the Better Ads guidelines where possible Your digital growth partner.
  • 34. Content Strategy. Creating unique, engaging and relevant content. Your digital growth partner.
  • 35. — Understanding core copywriting principles — Learning how to perform basic keyword research — Understanding how to optimise for YouTube — Understanding how to roll out personalisation on your site Learning Objectives. Your digital growth partner.
  • 36. — Copywriting - top tips — Latest on keyword research — YouTube optimisation — Personalisation & Retention — Blogs & website content Agenda. Your digital growth partner.
  • 38. Each piece of content you create should have... — A clear audience — A focus on topic & key terms — An easy to follow, logical written structure — A place in your site structure — A goal/key take-out Ultimately, writing great content comes down to being able to... Your digital growth partner.
  • 39. ...tell a story. Your digital growth partner.
  • 40. Don’t — Focus just on your product/service — Over exaggerate — Over use exclamation marks — Patronise readers — Write without your user’s vocabulary in mind Your digital growth partner. Do — Always check spelling & grammar — Speak the language of your user — Back information up with data where applicable — Focus on the user - speak to their context & not your service - be helpful — Read your copy back (multiple times, out loud) 𐄂 ✓
  • 41. Research is key. The dos and don’ts that we’ve just been through all broadly relate to one thing - knowing your user inside and out. Creating an avatar is a good first step, but to create highly effective copy, you should also: — Collect feedback from them to gain a deeper understanding — Analyse the way they speak using their interactions at various touch points Your digital growth partner.
  • 43. Keyword research is the process of finding the right keywords that you’d like your site to appear for in search results. When researching keywords, we need to pay attention to: Your digital growth partner. Search Volume (how many times they’re searched per month) Intent Relevance to your product / service / brand Competition Level
  • 44. Challenging the norm. Keyword research isn’t as simple as it used to be. It’s now less about individual keywords, and more about topics. As natural language processing has evolved, so has our need to think of more than just keywords. One of the biggest shifts has been towards the use of co-occurrence for keyword research. Your digital growth partner.
  • 45. Co-occurrence refers to keywords and phrases that are often seen used in close proximity to each other in content. Search engines identify phrases that are frequently used together and use this as part of their algorithms. To put this simply, search engines will expect to see certain phrases grouped together for certain topics. If these are not seen grouped together, they may see content as less relevant. Your digital growth partner. Co-occurrence.
  • 46. Tools of the trade. Your digital growth partner.
  • 47. Everybody researches keywords differently... My research methodology is quite simple: 1. Identify your tool of choice 2. Consider top level keywords/topics that you want to go after - perform keyword research for each of these 3. Break your top level topics into silos, then research queries for those silos 4. Map keywords to intent, and therefore type of page they’ll need 5. Map their place in the site structure Your digital growth partner.
  • 49. You might already know... … that YouTube’s algorithms are somewhat akin to Google’s earlier search algorithms. They still place heavy importance on: Your digital growth partner. Keywords in titles and descriptions Click through rates on videos Session duration / watch time User engagement
  • 50. Your digital growth partner. View velocity View velocity refers to how quickly users view your content after it has been published. It has been proved to have the largest impact on video rankings. Your digital growth partner.
  • 51. YouTube Keyword Research. YouTube keyword research isn’t too dissimilar from traditional keyword research. To find your target keywords, you still have to research: — Search volumes — Related keywords — Search intent Your digital growth partner.
  • 52. YouTube Keyword Research - Platforms. Your digital growth partner.
  • 53. YouTube Optimisation Tips - Keywords. — Use your keyword in your title, and keep it under 60 characters — Use keywords & related keywords in your description — Use VidIQ to find related tags for top ranking videos for your keywords, assess search volume for each and include the better ones Your digital growth partner.
  • 54. YouTube Optimisation Tips - Engagement. — Create a thumbnail that matches your title to encourage CTR — Keep users on YouTube through end cards, series playlists and suggestions in videos — Promote your videos as much as possible across all platforms — Hook users in your first 20 seconds - it’s the same concept as headlines & leads in on page copy — Plan your videos thoroughly - poorly planned content struggles to keep users’ attention — Edit your videos with different cuts, transitions & visual effects to keep viewer interest Your digital growth partner.
  • 55. Why just stop at YouTube? Your digital growth partner. YouTube videos aren’t just discoverable through YouTube - they’re also visible in Google Search. Optimise for them here too by: Analysing SERPs for your target keyword. If it contains a video - there’s an opportunity Analyse keywords/competitors for these videos, and create video content to replicate their success
  • 57. Direct address always wins the game. Personalisation gives us the opportunity to: Your digital growth partner. Speak directly to our audience. Connect with our audience on a deeper level through contextual references.
  • 59. But we shouldn’t always rely on automation. Your digital growth partner.
  • 60. Blogs and website content. Your digital growth partner.
  • 61. Landing pages or blogs? There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to when to use blogs or landing pages, but my personal preference is: Your digital growth partner. Landing pages for evergreen, bigger content. Blogs / Posts for reactive / topical content.
  • 63. What is a featured snippet? Your digital growth partner. Featured snippets are used to describe the prominent answer boxes that provide snippets of content from a site directly in search results. They usually appear in direct response to a query, and have been nicknamed ‘position 0’ by many in the industry.
  • 64. Why do they matter? Your digital growth partner.
  • 65. How to optimise for them. Your digital growth partner. — Research potential featured snippets, and take note of the structure present for each (is is free form content? Bulleted lists? A table?) — For each query you’re trying to achieve a snippet for, ensure that you are 100% in tune with the intent — Use schema markup — Test consistently — Cut out ambiguation - use NLP to help with this & define clear relationships between concepts & entities
  • 67. Natural Language Processing. Your digital growth partner.
  • 68. Beyond keywords. Natural language processing takes content analysis to a whole new level. We used to be able to get away with researching related keywords for text, now we have to do more. Ditch the keyword-only focus, start focusing on topics, entities and relationships in your content. Your digital growth partner.
  • 69. Google’s NLP API Google’s NLP API has a demo aspect that allows you to subject individual pieces of content to natural language processing algorithms. It’s a one-at-a-time process, but it can be opened in multiple tabs and used as a comparison tool (albeit a clunky one). Your digital growth partner.
  • 70. Key takeaways. 1. Traditional copywriting can teach us a lot about how to write content for web 2. Keyword research is more than just picking the most searched for keywords 3. YouTube optimisation is based on keywords and engagement - not dissimilar to search 4. Personalisation should be achieved through a mixture of tech and copywriting 5. Pages are easier to optimise than posts, so should be used for your most important content Your digital growth partner.
  • 71. Interactive Exercise The NLP tool in action. Your digital growth partner.
  • 72. Technical SEO Best Practices. Your digital growth partner.
  • 73. — To understand how to structure your site effectively — To understand the basic concepts of mobile first SEO — To change our perceptions of crawl budget, and how to understand/optimise it Learning Objectives. Your digital growth partner.
  • 74. Website structure. Site structure is an often overlooked, but an extremely important part of technical SEO. Google is an information retrieval system at its core, and information retrieval systems rely on logical structures and content groupings to gain a deeper understanding of data. Your digital growth partner.
  • 75. Data points needed. Your digital growth partner. Site structure should never be an afterthought, and it should never be implemented without research. The two key areas you must explore first are: — Your target keywords & their ‘children’ — Competitor site structures
  • 76. Keywords. In an ideal world, keyword research would be conducted in full before any site structure is planned & finalised. It’s not good enough to guess - map out all of your potential keywords, understand the terms that relate to them and could be seen as ‘children’, and structure your site accordingly. Unfortunately, most keyword research is done retroactively, so where do we go from there? Your digital growth partner.
  • 77. Competitors. Competitor research is a key part of most areas of SEO. Search engines deal with algorithms, and naturally there will be some competitors that satisfy these algorithms better than others. Let go of your perceived competitors, and open your mind to those ranking for your target terms. Treat this on a SERP by SERP basis and reverse engineer. Your digital growth partner.
  • 78. Your digital growth partner. An ontology encompasses a representation, formal naming and definition of the categories, properties and relations between the concepts, data and entities that substantiate one, many or all domains of discourse. Ontology • noun
  • 79. Your digital growth partner. Something to note about ontologies is that they don’t always stay static. Relationships between entities evolve, and new ones are discovered over time. It’s also unlikely that you’ll 100% nail your site structure with your first attempt. Test absolutely everything.
  • 80. Mobile First. Your digital growth partner.
  • 81. What is it? Mobile first indexing refers to Google moving away from their historic model of using desktop content for indexing and ranking. With the rise of smartphone usage, it now makes sense for Google to use mobile content for this instead. Your digital growth partner.
  • 82. Your digital growth partner. Dec 18 50% indexed As of December 18, Google confirm that around 50% of the web have been switched to mobile first indexing. Jul 19 Mobile first indexing for all new sites Google announce that as of July 1st, 2019, all new sites will automatically be indexed using mobile first. March 18 Mobile First Index rolls out After testing in December 2017, the mobile first index rolls out to a small batch of ‘mobile friendly’ sites. Jul 18 Speed update Google roll out the mobile speed update, designed to impact only the slowest loading mobile sites Mobile first timeline.
  • 83. Who should, and shouldn’t worry (as much) Your digital growth partner.
  • 84. Your digital growth partner. Shouldn’t worry — Responsive sites Should maybe worry — M dot domains — Dynamically served sites
  • 85. Beyond the panic. Fundamentally, mobile first index doesn’t really change the way in which we should think about SEO: — Users still come first — Relevance is still a factor — Algorithms still look for the same signals Your digital growth partner.
  • 86. Page speeds. Site speed has always been a factor for desktop, so it’s unsurprising that it is for mobile. Google’s mobile speed update only affected the slowest of sites, but we should always try to make our mobile sites as fast as possible regardless. The best way to audit site speed on mobile for the biggest gains is through Google Lighthouse. Your digital growth partner.
  • 87. AMP and PWAs. If you’re looking to further optimise your site speed, AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) can sometimes be a good option. If you’re using WordPress, there are many plugins that can help to implement this. If you want to take your site to the next level, then PWAs (Progressive Web Apps) are where you should be looking to. Your digital growth partner.
  • 88. Crawl Budget. Your digital growth partner.
  • 89. Your digital growth partner. If you ask Google...
  • 90. Your digital growth partner. If you ask SEOs...
  • 91. Your digital growth partner. So, we need to change our understanding.
  • 93. Start with log files. For any technical SEO, log files are an absolute must have piece of data. Log files, or web server log files are records of the interactions that user agents have with your website, and are stored on your server. They can tell you who visited your site, when they visited, how they got there, and much more. They do need to be configured correctly, and this is something that your web team can help you with. Your digital growth partner.
  • 95. Screaming Frog Log File Analyser. Your digital growth partner. Screaming Frog Log File Analyser is one of the best, and most cost effective log file analysis tools available. It allows you to turn those log files into something digestible, and to create actionable next steps from the data that they provide.
  • 96. Bonus... Screaming Frog Log File Analyser integrates seamlessly with their SEO Spider tool, and you can match URL data with log files. Connect the SEO Spider with GA, GSC and other APIs, and you have a completely full picture of all of the URLs on your site. Your digital growth partner.
  • 97. Log file analysis basics Your digital growth partner. — 404s and 500s — Frequently crawled URLs — Page size comparisons — Traffic & bot correlation — Log file & URL data discrepancies
  • 98. Understand your directives. Your digital growth partner. Things that don’t affect crawl budget: — Noindex tags — Canonical tags Things that do affect crawl budget: — Robots.txt rules — Redirects/htaccess file rules 𐄂 ✓
  • 99. Shift away from crawl budget, and towards crawl efficiency. Your digital growth partner.
  • 100. Key takeaways. Your digital growth partner. 1. Site structure should be planned using keywords and competitor research 2. Planning a site structure is all about creating relationships 3. Mobile first isn’t as scary as you might think 4. Crawl budget is ‘overrated’ 5. Log file analysis doesn’t have to be overly technical
  • 101. Thank You. Your digital growth partner.