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Search Engine Marketing

Penguin 4.0 has arrived at Google, and it’s all grown up!

penguin updateThe last update to Google’s Penguin update was Version 3.0, which landed back in 2014.  Last time Google said penguin would affect less than 1% of US/UK searches.  With that being the case, then Penguin has definitely grown up in 4.0.  Google announced the new version on September 23rd, 2016, stating that Penguin is now part of their core algorithm. (more…)

Local Keyword Ranking Reports – What they are and what they’re not.

In online marketing, certain reports become a point of fixation for marketers and business owners alike. Keyword Ranking reports are one of those reports that tend to look extremely valuable, but actually tend to leave out a lot information.  If you’re unfamiliar with ranking reports, they are snapshots of how your website is appearing in search engines for a specific set of defined keywords. They tell you your websites position on a results page, which can indicate the amount of visitors that will make it your site. If you’re ranked number one you will get a lot more visitors than if you’re ranked number 11.  Since this is so easy to understand and therefore it becomes a go to report for marketers. However, it’s up to us to explain what’s missing and stop a bad fixation.

Let’s go over a bit of a report from a service Upright likes to use Bright Local:

Local Keyword Ranking Reports (more…)

Measuring Site Usability

Did you know that site usability is one of the most important facets to a website? In fact, so important that it ‘outranks’ your sites rankings.  Even if your top keywords rank well, if the site doesn’t flow and work for the potential customer, then you have lost their business. There are several crucial things to consider when discussing site usability, such as browser compatibility (does it work in Chrome AND Internet Explorer?), layout, and overall design. But how do you measure site usability? There are numerous tests that have been developed over the last few years to help us understand how a potential customer interacts with your website. From this data, you can create modifications on your site to increase conversions, decrease bounce rates and provide a more user friendly environment for your visitors!

What software exists?

There are various software options that you can utilize to improve your visitor’s experience on your website. Whether you’re looking to test something specific or need a tool that offers a wide range of utilities, there are options for you and your business. At Upright Communications, we utilize Visual Website Optimizer. The VWO tool offers a wide range of implements including A/B testing, multivariate testing, and heat map software. (more…)

Two Resources for Mobile Optimization

The significance of mobile friendly search has been an SEO focal point for awhile now, and the importance of this trend seems only to be getting stronger. As we recently reported57% of users are accessing search engines using a mobile device, and a quarter of U.S. users report using only their mobile devices for online search. Google has remained in front of this trend, rolling out yet another update this month, aimed at helping mobile users find more relevant and mobile-friendly pages. If you have not yet optimized for mobile, now is the time.

If you are in need of assistance with developing a mobile-friendly site, Google has made two helpful tools available, which you can access at any time: the Webmaster Mobile Guide and the Mobile-Friendly Test. These easy-to-use resources provide guidance on how to improve or begin developing your mobile site.

google mobile test (more…)

Does Facebook have SEO Leverage?

Yes! Small medium business owners (and SEO professionals) everywhere are celebrating this new development. Finally, Facebook postings and videos now populate in Google. This is a really big, groundbreaking development for SEO and business owners.

For the longest time the only social media platforms that offered some sort of SEO leverage were YouTube and Google + (of course both of which are owned by Google). Up until recently (and by recently as of February 1, 2016) Facebook posts and videos are returning search results in Google.  Keep in mind that these posts are nicely optimized and support some sort of keyword strategy. Not just a random meme that was shared on the page but a post with substance that will generate search results. (more…)

Title Tags – Quick SEO & Usability Tips

title tagOne of the most important, and often neglected, content elements on a web page is the title tag. Title tags are used to define the page, and are often pulled by search engines for use as a description of the page for listings on the search engine results pages (SERPs). The title tag is meant to be a concise, keyword representation of the page content, and is important for both SEO and site usability.

Giving your title tags a quick review and update is a great way to give your website an easy SEO upgrade. Here are 5 things to look for when considering your title tags:

  1. Effective Title Elements

The format of an effective title tag will typically include a primary keywordsecondary keyword, and the company name. Depending upon the business, inclusion of the geographic location of the business may also be advantageous. The “pipe” symbol is often used to separate these elements in the title: (more…)

Smart Campaigns Elect to Use Online Marketing

ElectionEvery election year it seems to be suggested that the dirty campaign tactics and nasty attack ads are unprecedented. Many historians would argue that dirty campaigns are nothing new, pointing to the 1828 U.S. presidential election, during which there was no shortage of mud-slinging between Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams. If we are looking for something truly unprecedented in this year’s election, you could certainly make the case for the use and influence of the internet and social media.

In addition to a never-ending supply of Twitter commentary from candidates and pundits, there have been plenty of memes, sound bites and viral videos being used in an attempt to sway opinion.  While there can be much debate as to whether not most of this “information” is actually useful to voters, it does provide campaigns with perhaps unprecedented access to the thoughts, concerns, and priorities of the electorate. For example, during the debates, campaigns could monitor Google searches, Tweets and Facebook post trends to see, in real time, how viewers were reacting to what was being said by the candidates. According to Google,

“Political search interest spikes 440 percent on average during live televised debates as people turn to the web to learn more about the candidates and their platforms.” (more…)

What Google Removal of Right Column Ads Means for Organic Search

GoogleUPDATEAs of Friday, February 19th, Google stopped displaying AdWords ads in the right column on search engine results pages (SERPs). Users will now only see pay per click ads on the top and bottom of the page. Going along with the removal of the right column ad strip, reports indicate that there will be more SERPs showing four ads at the top of the page with commercial searches. The question for search engine marketers is how the removal of right column ads will impact their marketing strategies on Google. (more…)

Meta Descriptions – The Overlooked Content You Need

meta_descriptionIf you have a website and have looked at ways to increase its visibility, you have probably heard about meta descriptions. Meta descriptions are a very important SEO element, but since they are a “behind the scenes” feature, they are often overlooked by webmasters. Adding meta descriptions to your website is a simple improvement that can greatly enhance not only rankings and visibility, but also the likelihood of someone clicking on your site.

Understanding what meta descriptions do for your website will help you write them well. It used to be that search engines were the target audience for meta descriptions, but updates to Google algorithms and search result listings have changed that. Now meta descriptions can appear as part of the text that displays to describe a search result. That means your meta description acts as somewhat of a teaser, enticing a reader to click for more. (more…)

Adding Video Content – Post or Host?

YouTube_ButtoBy now we all have heard that videos are a great way to add valuable, Google rank-worthy content to a website.  These videos can include customer testimonials, product demonstrations, tutorials, or anything else that will get potential customers interested in your business, products, and services. Once you decide on a few ideas and make some videos, the next decision you need to make is where to put them.

Option 1: Post

There is no doubt that posting your video on a site like YouTube, which has over a billion users, will put it in a place that gets far more traffic than your website. But just because your video is on YouTube doesn’t mean viewers will watch it or even find it amongst the hundreds of hours of videos residing on the site. While making your video entertaining might increase the odds of it being shared, optimizing your video with meta data is more likely to increase the chances of it being found when viewers search for its keyword subject matter. (more…)

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