Digital marketing is tough. Anyone who wants to improve a website and raise its visibility in search knows that.
As a marketer or business owner, you have to make about a zillion decisions for your website along the way to prominence and profitability.
Naturally, questions come up that you need help answering. And you might not have the luxury of an expert at your beck and call.
Since articles and experts abound in digital marketing, it’s hard to know what answers to trust. That’s especially true with SEO questions.
Advice you find around the web may be conflicting, outdated, or just plain impractical.
So for marketers who are trying to figure out how to do search engine optimization, content marketing, search engine marketing, or social media marketing on their own, we would like to help clear up the confusion …
Read more of the Ask Us Anything video series announcement.
May 24, 2018
Obtaining “white hat” SEO links is really only in part about the link itself. It’s also about serving the audience and community of the site that links to you … and real relationships.
People should link to you because you have earned the link, not because you bought or bartered for it.
It is our opinion that link building is less about the number of links and more about the number of linking domains from within your industry. Quality over quantity always.
Our list of 50 ways to get quality SEO backlinks is different from other link-building-idea lists in one important way. We stay focused on how you can add value for your ultimate audience through your website.
February 20, 2018
The relationship between a business and its SEO consulting firm is a delicate balance of give and take.
In order for an SEO strategy to deliver the best results, the SEO consultant must give accurate and useful recommendations, and the client must take that guidance and implement those recommendations.
This is a team effort where the consultant solves problems and mentors the client, and the client then learns and implements. Seems fairly straightforward, but it’s not always so.
You have no doubt experienced this in your business. A project can have great energy at the outset. But as time passes, progress can be delayed and momentum stalled for a variety of reasons.
Here’s the good news: We’ve observed that there are five common roadblocks affecting SEO consulting projects that can absolutely be surpassed — once you know how to identify and push through them. In this article, I’ll go over the five common issues that threaten an SEO consulting project’s success AND how a business can overcome them:
- Misaligned expectations
- Time constraints
- Budget constraints
- Lack of SEO knowledge
- Website back-end and architectural issues
February 15, 2018
On 12th February 2018, Dhananjay Kumar from Max Life Insurance fulfilled his five-year long dream of meeting Bruce Clay in person. Dhananjay, who was the lucky winner of Bruce Clay India’s SEO Contest, arrived at BCI’s Gurgaon office to claim his prize — an exclusive 30-minute Q&A session with the Father of SEO, Bruce Clay.
Dhananjay, who calls himself a big fan of Bruce Clay, is passionate about SEO. With an eager clasp of hands and the words “can’t wait to get started,” he shot off questions for Bruce, which the SEO guru answered with his characteristic composure and just the right dose of humor!
The excerpt below contains Bruce’s advice on various SEO issues including compliance restrictions, press releases, voice search, local market confusion, PWAs and more.
January 29, 2018
It’s now 2018, and we are officially living in a mobile-first world. In fact, Google has begun the switch to a mobile-first index — which means Google will rank your website based on your mobile content, relevance and UX.
Your mobile navigation (menus and internal links) contribute to all three.
Good mobile navigation makes it easy for people to find what they need, without bogging down page speed or cluttering the screen. It also needs to keep PageRank flowing to the important pages that you want to rank well in search.
Site navigations historically included everything on a site in huge, multi-tiered lists. On mobile, that approach doesn’t work. It looks cluttered. It requires scrolling. And it causes your visitors to bounce away.
Here I’ll lay out seven mobile-friendly navigation best practices that make life easier for people visiting your business site on a mobile device:
- Keep mobile navigation short and sweet.
- List the most important pages first.
- Think of search as part of your navigation.
- Make your navigation intuitive.
- Be thoughtful about fonts and contrast.
- Design for touch.
- Design for the multi-screen mobile user.
January 16, 2018
Marketing teams across the board will face receding budgets as the C-suite becomes increasingly unwilling to dole out money without solid proof that it delivers results. As a result, I expect to see a focus on attribution tools and better data reporting as the industry scrambles to connect the dots of customer journeys and justify marketing spend.
Predictions for digital marketing in 2018 are fairly easy to make — at least compared to the last 13 years of annual prediction posts I’ve written. I am sure that most in the SEO industry who follow Google see these trends already progressing. In a nutshell, the hot buttons SEOs know now will stay hot.
Here are my predictions for mobile first, voice search, content, linking, speed, SEO, ecommerce, machine learning, virtual reality and video — to help you be informed to make the right marketing moves this year.
January 10, 2018
We’re in a time when writers carry a heavy responsibility. They produce the fuel that SEO and marketing engines need to drive sales forward.
That’s because content marketing requires a LOT of content. In fact, 72% of marketers surveyed said relevant content creation is the most effective SEO tactic.
It makes sense, then, that writers should be equipped with tools that help them make informed SEO decisions along the way to making relevant content.
Read about why original content is harder to produce and the solution to the growing need for SEO-skilled writers who can analyze data and decide what content needs creating in this post.
November 29, 2017
The good news: Showing up in Google’s search engine can be extremely beneficial to your local business.
The bad news: Google doesn’t care if you rank high or low. It cares only that there are quality results that answer the query to the total satisfaction of the searcher.
So the pressing question is, how do you rank higher on Google Maps and Google local search results? Improving your local search rankings is possible, and the results are very real. A Google study found that:
- 4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find local information.
- 50 percent of local smartphone searches lead to a store visit in less than a day.
- 18 percent of local searches on a smartphone result in a sale within a day.
If you’re asking, “How does Google local search work, and how can I rank higher in local search?” then read on … this local SEO checklist is for you!
November 20, 2017
We are well on our way with the fourth Industrial Revolution, and the internet is alive … almost.
All around the web are speculations regarding artificial intelligence (AI) and the future of our civilization. The idea that computers will take over the majority of jobs in the workplace today has become well accepted. Some careers will be destroyed, although many more will be born as a result.
From the great benefits to the potential risks to our species, some of our modern day economic titans have expressed their hopes and concerns. A few examples …
Warren Buffett stated that he believes AI will kill jobs but is ultimately good for society.
Elon Musk is attempting to morph nature and technology with his new idea for Neuralink, a company he is launching to merge man and machine.
And Mark Cuban thinks that the world’s first trillionaire will be as a result of AI.
So what? How does this affect your day to day, or even your future?
What if I said that this future applies to PPC search engine marketing? We’re talking about the wave of SEM automation and the not-far-off day when search engine marketing runs itself.
Prepare for marketing automation. Read How Close Are We to Search Engine Marketing Running Itself?
November 15, 2017
It’ll be 10 years ago this January that I first walked through the doors at Bruce Clay, Inc. and entered digital marketing.
I was fresh out of journalism school, which I’d studied because I wanted to write truth to the world. By making information publicly available, I thought I could contribute to the greater good. I saw myself educating readers by sharing the stories of the world. Pretty altruistic, right?
I never thought I would work in marketing. Who plans on a career in marketing? What 10-year-old says, “I want to be a marketer when I grow up, Mommy!”
Well, I’ve learned that marketers play a similar role as journalists but in the private business sector. We’re in the business of communications — crafting messaging and figuring out how to get those messages in front of as many people as possible.
We use our storytelling talents and distribution know-how for our companies and our clients. Our job is to get the right story in front of the right audience. I’ve learned that SEO wins happen at the intersection of identifying storytelling opportunities and maximizing the visibility of those stories through search.
And yet I think it can be easy for an SEO to forget a critical role they play for clients and for organizations: that of the content evangelist. SEO’s can fall into a trap of focusing on the technical requirements for making content findable by search engines. And while crawlability and accessibility issues are key SEO responsibilities, big brands today are demonstrating that the competitive advantage lies in the crafting of 10x content.