Why Technical SEO matters – 2015

Technical SEO is the first phase of any SEO Campaign

If you can address your Technical SEO issues in-house, you will be well on your way to gaining some valuable wins on the organic landscape.

A man walks into a doctors surgery and says “Doctor I am having trouble with my knees, I need to be able to run faster and i need you to repair my Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury.” So the doctor takes his word for it, books the surgery and preforms the operation straight away. The results are not conclusive. Who do you blame? Does this process even sound right?

This is what is common in the SEO world. All to often site owners will come to SEO agencies or consultants and say nothing more than i want more links to my site. Using the analogy above, i hope you can understand why we as SEO practitioners think it is crazy in all instances. As in the example of the doctors surgery, the first thing that needs to be done and should be done is a full appraisal of the patient, in this case the website. I have seen too many cases to ignore the value of a technical SEO audit in the first instance. Massive gains can be achieved from simple technical fixes.

To give you any example of technical recommendations making a difference i have highlighted a clients SEO visibility timeline. SEO visibility represents the organic search visibility for a domain over time. It is made up of a domain’s ranking keyword search volumes and positions. What this graphs shows is a series of peaks and troughs, all related to technical faults and fixes affecting the site. You can see the impact technical issues can have on a site, pretty conclusive.

technical SEO-visibility

 

As a reference for Technical SEO issues, Moz have just released a 2015 Technical SEO Guide. It is very comprehensive, so rather than try and better it i am just going to link to it. Please review it as it is the best around. http://moz.com/blog/technical-site-audit-for-2015

Given the length of the guide you will see that there are quite a few elements to technical SEO. Hopefully this will give you more of an insight to the array of issues that need to be reviewed. I suggest you work your way through this and address what elements you understand and what ones you don’t. The ones you understand proceed to fix accordingly in-house and the other please consult your local SEO manager for advice.

As normal, before any of the changes are done, benchmarks should be established to measure the final results related to the improvements.

Get to it.

Colour Design Optimisation for Graphic Design

Optimised Colour Design for the Beginner

Video Transcript….

Hi, there guys. I want to talk to you today about Colour Optimised Design.

In keeping with the general theme of the web, it’s all about optimising a theme, with the right colours in mind that will give first impressions to your users that will leave a lasting impression, as well.

In this instance, I’ve created my WordPress theme and as with other Drupal, Dream-Theme, you can go out there, and you can actually just buy themes straight off the shelf. But a lot of these themes actually give you the chance to customize the colour variations within the themes themselves.

This is what I found challenging, because I want to, ultimately you want to add your own style to anything that you do, and that’s totally understandable. But, I don’t really have the experience as a designer, to know what colour combinations work best, to deliver that user experience.

So, got onto a website called Adobe Kuler, K-U-L-E-R. Fantastic website for straightaway, just getting colour swatches, and colour palettes that work great in combination. You can go there. They’re designed by designers who, obviously, have that experience, so you’re mad not to sort of use their resource and their user experience to your advantage.

You get, generally there’s a five swatch palate variation within each theme, and you can take that away, and use those colour combinations, which will naturally work well, and apply that to your theme on your website. You can use this as a base colour range to set your whole style, your website, and it’s invaluable. It’s brilliant in every sense of the word.

I guess, like all things on the web that need to be optimized, we have PPC optimisation, we have search engine optimisation, we have conversion optimisation. So, in this instance, I’m talking about colour design optimisation, and it’s something you really need to do. You need to have a website that, upon first impressions, really engages with that user, catches their eye, has a strong identity, and a strong feel to it, and the best way to do that is, well, it’s obviously, a graphical design layout, is through the use of colours.

I recommend this site, Adobe Kuler. By all means, check it out, and I hope it goes a long way to helping you optimize your site for a coloured theme.

I have chosen to go for a simply colour theme here using the Neutral Blue palette. What i might do in the future is split test different colour themes from the good to the bad to see if colour has any impact on interactions amongst users.

Thanks

Top SEO Ranking Factors 2013

The Top SEO Ranking Factors within Search in 2013.

 

Video Transcript

Hi there. Just came across SearchMetrics’ updated report for SEO ranking factors, 2013. It’s quite a lengthy document. I think it’s about 70-odd pages in total. It’s an interesting read. SearchMetrics. if you don’t know, are one of the leading platforms for search monitoring if you like. They constantly go out and they crawl over a 100 million Web pages. They have about 75 million keywords in their index, and they use this index to constantly crawl the Web.

Pretty much the way that Google does, but that feeds into their own platform, so you can instantly get an idea of the landscape, and how it’s changing in reference to Google and all the other search engines, as well, Bing, it just depends on what geographical location you’re in. Because you can preset your preferences in terms of the search landscape, but going back to the report, it was quite interesting, because there were three, for me, three key take-aways of that report, in terms of what were the major ranking factors that’ve changed or evolved over 2013, compared with 2012.

For me, and I think everyone will be pleasantly surprised, was the presence of Google Plus. Shares and Plus ones and the emergence and the social activity within this platform. It definitely had a correlation with significant ranking signals. But, in saying that, in 2012, were they really monitoring Google Plus as well as they were in 2013? That remains to be seen, as well, because as a platform in 2012, Google Plus was still evolving, so there’s a little bit to be read into it. But, definitely, about 2014 compared with 2013; I think that will be a fairer metric that you could look at, or a better metric you could look at, just to see the true significance of it.

The other thing that was quite interesting was content. They found that search…Web sites that were ranking within the search environment tended to have more content on the page, so again, it’s coming back to content, and the quality of the content. And sometimes quality of content naturally flows over to more content, so it’s…if you’re gonna do any posting or writing, it’s probably better to write less often, but to have better quality. So, on-page, more content, and better quality content. So when I say more content, this is, ideally, they said up to 500 words, so I would suggest 500 words-plus, and that gives you, if anything, a minimum starting point from which to base good content. And good content should be interactive, should be able to entertain, and they really should get a lot out of it. So, 500 words minimum, you should be able to achieve, no problem at all.

The other thing, as well, which was quite interesting, which had a major…moved on significantly since 2012, was the presence of the keyword within the page title. And they’ve found that the closer the targeted keyword was to the front of the page title, it was having more of an impact within the rankings, than what it had from 2012. So, if you were trying to define a Web page, and that Web page is targeting a particular keyword, that keyword needs to be at the front end of the page title. Make it a priority. Don’t tag it towards the middle or the end; get it at the front end, and I think, that will definitely have a better ranking signal, and do you some good results.

So, just to summarize again, those three factors which you want to look at for 2013. Ideally, create great on-page content. Make it engaging, make it resourceful, and make it unique. Make it over 500 words. And after you’ve created your on-page content, create your page title, with that keyword optimized towards the front of the page title. That’s imperative. And then after you’ve built that out, you need to go out into Google Plus, as a first point of reference, and get it out there. Get it interactive, get it shared, get it plus-oned, and then, obviously, explore your other social channels. But, I think as a first point of preference, Google Plus is your preferred platform. And this is a platform that’s pretty much in its infancy, and it’s gonna grow, and being as it’s so intrinsically linked with all the other Google services, it’s something you need to be on. So, by all means, get out there.

I hope these take-aways are of value, and talk to you soon. Thanks.

SEO Agency Price Structures

How much does an SEO Agency charge?

 

Video Transcript

Hi there. Just wanted to point you past the directory I found the other day I was looking at which is quite interesting. Because, being an SEO agency, we all have price structures that we charge to clients, and clients are always interested in how that structuring works. We’re a service led industry, so, you know, it’s basically man hours towards a task and then billed accordingly.

At the same time there’s a lot of people out there that may be thinking about starting their own SEO agency, wondering about what sort of price structures to charge. Or, even if you’re an existing agency and you just want to sort of compare where you stand in terms of other rates with other agencies.

So, have a look at this. It’s from Moz which was formerly SEOmoz which has now been rebranded into Moz. They’ve got a list of probably the top SEO inbound marketing agencies on their site. But, if you hit the little drop down that says ‘Find out more’ you can see all the different pricing structures and tiers which is quite interesting. For instance, you’ll get some agencies that are charging $2,500 per month with a fixed twelve month contract, and then you’ll get other agencies that are charging $5,000 or $6,000 a month.

Again, it just depends, locked in contracts, I mean this is still very much a broad overview, and it would be very dependent on the scope of work that the client was looking for. But at the same you get an understanding of, you know, what’s out there and in terms of the different pricing structures within the different agencies.

The other thing to think about it as well is: if you look at it from a resourcing point of view. Say, for instance, you were just going to look at purely a time rate per hour. I don’t know, you might look at, say, $1,500 U.S. dollars a day or maybe less, you know. It might be £1,000 a day. Straight away you get an understanding of the service and the price rate that’s being offered to the client, whether they’re going to work on four, five or six man days to service that client.

So, yeah, it’s interesting. It just gives you a bit of an overview. I found it quite interesting, so I thought I’d give it out there and share it to you.

Thanks a lot. Bye.

Success

THIS IS ALL I WANT.

To laugh often and much to win the respect of intelligent people and affection of children.
To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends.
To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others.
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child a garden patch or redeemed social condition.
To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.

This is to have succeeded.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson-

This is all I want

-Daryl Cygler-