Author Archives: Dallas / Fort Worth SEO

15 Local SEO Stats for 2019 (And How To Apply Them)

Local SEO Stats 2019 Blog Cover

1.) 80% of consumers lose trust in businesses with inaccurate online info

  • Source: Social Media Today
  • How to Apply: Audit every NAP citation for your business and ensure accuracy & uniformity
  • Tools to Help: You can use MOZ Local, Yext, or hire a digital marketing agency for citation cleanup

2.) 87% of smartphone owners use Google once per day (at least)

  • Source: HubSpot
  • How to Apply: Optimize your website for mobile devices, which prompt local-based search results
  • Tools to Help: Test your mobile speed with Think With Google’s free online tool

3.) 75% of users never make it to the 2nd page of search results

  • Source: Main Street ROI
  • How To Apply: Optimize your web pages for the highest possible rankings
  • Tools to Help: SEO agencies who specialize in on-page SEO & Google rankings

4.) “Near Me” type searches grew by an estimated 900% over a 2 year span

  • Source: Chat Meter
  • How to Apply: Invest in local on-page SEO which can prompt these kind of queries
  • Tools to Help: Check out Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress

5.) Google My Business influences local map pack results by more than 25%

  • Source: MOZ
  • How to Apply: Claim & optimize your Google My Business listing
  • Tools to Help: Perform a branded search of your company name and assess the results

6.) 72% of consumers point to positive reviews a trust indicator for a business

  • Source: Search Engine Journal
  • How to Apply: Ask for reviews from customers & monitor them as they are published
  • Tools to Help: Righteous Reviews widget from Dallas Fort Worth SEO (Call to Learn More)

7.) An estimated 50% of searches will be voice queries by 2020

  • Source: SEO Tribunal
  • How to Apply: Make content clear, concise, & conversational
  • Tools to Help: Try searching for your company on Amazon Echo or Google Assistant

8.) 50% of users would rather use a mobile browser than a mobile app

  • Source: Alps Net
  • How to Apply: Invest in local SEO & mobile optimization over App development
  • Tools to Use: Any & everything, MOZ, SEMRush, Yoast, Think With Google, etc.

9.) 50% of mobile searchers look for business identification, like an address

  • Source: HubSpot
  • How to Apply: Ensure your address is listed on the footer of your website
  • Tools to Help: Your left & right eyes

10.) 81% of consumers search online before making a big purchase decision

  • Source: Junto
  • How to Apply: Establish a strong online presence through your website & other profiles
  • Tools to Help: SEO literature, agencies, & software

11.) 70% of North Americans use social media daily

  • Source: Social Media Today
  • How to Apply: Create business pages/profiles on Facebook, Instagram, & other platforms
  • Tools to Help: HootSuite, SproutSocial

12.) Review signals have a more than 15% influence over local Maps rankings

  • Source: MOZ
  • How to Apply: Generate as many customer reviews as possible
  • Tools to Help: Righteous Reviews (Sends automatic text & email alerts to recent customers)

13.) The #1 local rankings receive 24.46% of clicks

  • Source: Chatmeter
  • How to Apply: Do as much SEO work as possible
  • Tools to Help: The aforementioned; MOZ, SEMRush, Yoast, etc.

14.) Google has 80.5% of the search engine market share

  • Source: Junto
  • How to Apply: Ignore Bing & Yahoo, since Google SEO will help rank you on them anyway
  • Tools to Help: Google Analytics, Google Webmaster Tools

15.) 61% of of smartphone users prefers Ads customized to their local area

  • Source: Rev Local
  • How to Apply: Utilize Google Ads (Formerly AdWords) to run a local Ad campaign
  • Tools to Help: Google Ads (formerly AdWords) & certified campaign managers
Posted: | Updated: Jan 8, 2019 | Categories: SEO

12 Innovative Dallas SEO Concepts That Will Grow Your Business in 2019

12 Innovative Dallas SEO Concepts That Will Grow Your Business in 2019 Blog Cover

Make a Video

Did you know the best way to rank on organic search results is not with your website but with a YouTube video? That’s right, when users perform a search for certain keywords, video results will appear in what is known as the carousel. The video carousel appears above traditional results. Aside from securing another spot on a search engine results page (SERP), videos also send social signals to search engines that your brand is active and producing content. When you embed a YouTube video onto your website, it can even help that page rank as a traditional search result. With shorter attention spans, and greater access to information, consumers are naturally attracted to rich content that appeals to their visual senses. Videos can improve SEO as both standalone content, as well as extensions of other content. The former example, which cites the carousel video result would be an example of standalone content, while the latter, the embedded video on a web page would be an example of a content extension. Both are helpful.

Get Dallas Business on Google Video Screenshot

Start a Podcast

Video has been a popular form of media for quite a while. As we know, video was popular far before the internet became immersed in our culture. But one form of media that had not existed prior to the world wide web is podcasting. Yes, podcasts can be thought of as modern iterations of radio broadcasts, but they are not the conceptual equivalent. Regardless of your opinion on the origin and novelty of the medium, we can all agree that podcasting is one of the most consumed forms of media in the world. As a Dallas business, you too can take advantage of this phenomenon. Regardless of what industry you belong to, a podcast can be a brandable content distributor for your company. It is a way to increase online visibility, connect with others in your industry, and build awareness about your services. There’s many great tools available to new podcasters in today’s market. Services like Blubrry allow for hosting and distribution of episodes, and even provide a WordPress plugin known as PowerPress to publish the audio on your site.

Write a Long-Form Blog Post

A study performed on content length in relation to SEO, signals that the average first page result has 1,890 words. This finding is counter-intuitive to what we believe about decreasing attention spans throughout the world. That’s unless you dig deeper and understand the nuance of the discussion. Long form content does not mean almanac-esque write-ups of boring subjects, formatted like an 1800’s library book. Instead, long form SEO content can be a blog post, surrounded by videos and infographics, one of which we already touched on, another of which we’ll touch on shortly. Additionally, content should be formatted with header tags and bullet points so that readers don’t have to read every word to find the information they are looking for. The importance of length in content is not so users will consume the entire post in one sitting, it is so the page serves as a resource that people can keep coming back to, over and over again. If the post is missing any information about the subject, the user will navigate elsewhere to find it.

Create an Infographic

The emergence of Instagram as the fastest growing social media platform should indicate that visual media is the trend towards which we are moving as a society. When people want to consume content, they prefer it in visual formats. That’s why so many people scroll through IG posts on their phone, several, if not dozens of times per day (or more!). The same logic that allows us to understand the appeal of Instagram should be applied to web content of our own. Infographics are a better way to tell a story than text alone. We spoke about content length as a major factor for rankings, but it is only maximized when surrounded by videos and images. The most informative kinds of images are infographics. For those unfamiliar, infographics are instructional image files. They can be anything from diagrams to bar graphs, and many things in between. The object of an infographic is to inform the user of facts in a visually appealing manner. Attention spans may have grown shorter, but they can still be captured through visuals.

Infographic Example Screenshot

Network With Partners

Many Dallas business owners take on a me against the world mentality, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Partnering with other companies in other industries can help grow your brand, not only online, but offline. As a digital marketing company, it is our job to tell you how partnerships can improve your online profile. Let’s say you become acquainted with a local business in a related but non-identical industry. You decide to promote their services on your own site where appropriate, and they do the same for you. You’ve now merged your client bases together, which may very well overlap at times. Both of your services are needed by the consumer, but their respective trust of each of your businesses, will transfer over to your endorsement of the corresponding party. From a strictly SEO perspective, earning inbound links from other companies shows Google what the user is already seeing, and that’s an endorsement of trust. A vote of confidence from one website to another, very much parallels a similar gesture in a public forum.

Optimize for Voice Search

Alexa, find me a Dallas SEO company. Don’t think that phrase has never been uttered with the emergence of Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, and other voice technology software, often referred to as smart speakers. We can expect these devices to become the status quo over the next decade, and be a prevalent part of almost every household in the United States. The consequence of its emergence will impact SEO as much as anything else. Just as things changed when users started performing searches on mobile phones rather than desktop computers, so too will it when the majority transitions to voice commands. Asking their virtual assistant to find them anything from restaurants near them, to home service providers will change how content is optimized for search. Crafting language in a conversational tone is one immediately logical way to accommodate this new software. The entire trend will place an even greater premium on quality content than already existed. The same goes for format and structure.

Connect With Followers

There’s lots of social media platforms available to brands today, one of which we spoke on at length previously in this post; Instagram. IG is extraordinarily popular and can be leveraged by business owners in the same way everyday people use it for social interactions. Aside from Instagram, the major players in the social media world remain relevant. That’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube. Each of the four platforms have continued to garner world wide usage and heavy engagement under the right circumstances. Still, their evolutions have not come without controversy and challenges. Facebook for example no longer prioritizes organic brand content which makes advertising the far more profitable venture through which to market your services. Twitter is still heavily populated, but getting people’s attention as a non-celebrity is easier said than done. LinkedIn is thought of as a place for B2B networking, but it can be very useful for branding as well. YouTube is another channel we noted before, highlighting its value.

Integrate Customer Reviews

Much is made of the value of customer reviews for SEO, branding, and digital marketing. It’s true that statistics show that consumers trust reviews as much as they would a personal recommendation. It’s also true that reviews are user-generated content, which is perhaps the most valuable form of content that exists on the internet today. But what’s less spoken about is how to properly garner reviews for your business. You certainly want to steer clear of shady practices like buying them from spam farms or incentivizing customers or friends with actual financial assets. Instead, you have to make the process as convenient as possible for satisfied clients, and as importantly, remind them to do it. This is best accomplished when you integrate your review system onto your main website. This way, when you ask a happy client to leave feedback, all they have to do is navigate to your website, which will then channel them to Google or Facebook. Integrations should also execute email and text reminders to consumers.

Review Integration Screenshot

Host an Online Event

When the internet first emerged, people were so overwhelmed to have access to information, that it seemed like a magical journey at all times. The internet in its most basic form is far less interesting now, mostly because people have grown so accustomed to having it at their fingertips 24/7. Call it getting spoiled, or even lack of appreciation, but there’s another thing it can be called too; reality. Today, to engage the average internet user, you must bring something more to the table than a static page. What people crave today is interactivity and real-time events. Businesses in Dallas, TX can host online events through a number of channels. You can conduct live streams on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn. You can even open up questions to your audience “on-the-air” so to speak, so that there queries can be answered in real-time. Hosting digital events is a great way to congregate interested parties into a single space of the web, and should ultimately lead to increased brand awareness & lead conversions.

Diversify Brand Channels

As a youngster, you were probably told not to put all of your eggs in one basket. The same can be said about digital marketing in 2019. Google is the best search engine in the world, and certainly the one that is most frequently visited by users throughout the planet. Still, there’s other channels through which to diversify your brand. Let’s say tomorrow that Google decides to disband, and end the internet as we know it. What would you do? If your entire business would fold immediately, you know you’ve made poor decisions from a practical standpoint. Try to invest some of your resources in other marketing channels like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Also, be on the lookout for new and exciting social media platforms that emerge each and every day. At its core the internet is a place for innovation. Google is sometimes thought of as the internet itself, but it is really just an integral extension of it. The world wide web would go on without its powerhouse search engine, and now you should ensure that your company would too.

Evaluate Competitors

It’s not who did it first, it’s who did it right … it’s a platitude that actually holds true. Business has always been a copycat world to some degree. Sure, we encourage and reward innovation, but we often incentivize emulation. Think about Facebook, for example. Was Mark Zuckerberg the first person to ever think of a social network? The backstory suggests he was not, but he was certainly the person who executed it the best. To do so, he had to study the pros and cons of his competitor platforms, and make sure his was the most elite. Dallas businesses have to do the same thing when thinking about website improvement, and digital marketing in general. Which of your competitors has a better website than you? If you can think of even one, your have room for improvement. If you are unsure what your competitors are doing or how they’re doing it, you can use analysis tools like MOZ, Majestic, and SEMRush to evaluate their organic and link profiles and make changes accordingly. It also helps to simply visit their website and take a look.

Rethink Title Tags

SEO’s have traditionally thought of title tags as a way to speak directly to the search engine. But in 2019, they should be thinking about speaking to the user. It still helps to have the keyword in your title tag — after all, that’s what the user is searching for based on volume, but you should also add an element of appeal that is not as traditional. For example, after placement of your main keyword, you should add a sentence about how your business will help them achieve their goal. Users are particularly drawn to numbers and statistics. If you can convince them of a tangible outcome within the 60 character title tag limit, there’s every chance you will capture their attention. This is especially useful for improving Click Through Rate (CTR). Google is believed to use CTR as one of their primary ranking factors. If users click on your result because of its engaging title tag, it signals to the search engine that the page has increasing value and deserves to usurp results listed ahead of it, but that garner less clicks or CTR.

Posted: | Updated: Dec 4, 2018 | Categories: SEO, Social Media

SEO Basics: 6 Tips for Dallas Business Owners

As a small business in Dallas, TX, you’ve likely heard of “SEO” but do you know what it actually means? SEO stands for search engine optimization and refers to the refinement of digital content in order to improve or sustain rankings on Google search. Going down the SEO rabbit hole can have your head spinning like a top … so the great folks at Dallas Fort Worth SEO have decided to focus on 6 tips that best embody the basics of search engine optimization. We hope you use these tips to bolster your online presence in Dallas and Fort Worth, and earn more leads.

SEO Basics Dallas Blog Cover

Tip #1 – Claim & Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

If you could choose only one digital marketing task to perform, it should be the claiming & optimization of your Google My Business profile. In 2019, a Google homepage is even more important than your actual website. A Google homepage is what customers see when they type your brand into Google. If you’ve properly optimized your profile, they will see your company logo and business hours on the top right of the page, which is known as the knowledge graph. In an ideal scenario, your profile contains customer reviews so that users can view your aggregate star rating. The more positive reviews you have, the more consumers trust your business. Claiming & optimization involves the following:

  • Address Verification
  • Company Branding
  • NAP Information
  • Review Generation

Reviews are very helpful in optimizing a GMB profile but generating them is not always easy. That’s why you should create business cards with links to your review profiles on Facebook and Google. You should also place these links in your email signature so that clients see them when corresponding with you our your employees. You should even go as far as asking loyal clients if they can provide feedback through Google, Facebook, and Yelp. Be careful not to incentivize reviews because Google well penalize you if you’re caught. Avoid asking for reviews from former clients who think poorly of you or your service.

Tip # 2 – Buy a Dot Com Domain Name

We’ve all seen sites like myfakedallasbusiness.biz. They look sketchy to both users and search engines alike. The z at the end of biz reeks of malware, and everybody knows it. That’s one example of a non dot com domain name that is bad for SEO. Another would be myfakedallasbusiness.weebly.com. While it is technically a dot com website, it is actually a subdomain. This means A) you didn’t buy it (Weebly owns it) and B) it looks incredibly unprofessional. This tip recommends you actually buy a dot com domain name from a real hosting provider like GoDaddy or Bluehost. When you choose a domain name, you want it to be topical, readable, and memorable. Keep it simple. Here’s why dot coms are necessary:

  • Aesthetics
  • Convenience
  • Reputation
  • Trust

The aesthetics of a domain name are more important than you think. When a user looks up at the address bar and sees something that looks suspicious, they immediately exit out in many cases. This increases your site’s bounce rate which is strongly to believed to be a major Google ranking factor. When people leave your site quickly it signals to Google that they don’t trust it. That brings us to two of our other listed factors; reputation and trust. Dot coms exude both of these qualities to the users. As for convenience, dot coms are second nature to 99% of internet users. If they know your brand name, they are almost always going to think of it as a dot com.
On the other hand, dot nets are often confused with dot coms, and can cost a business valuable traffic.

Tip #3 – Publish Original Content

Scraped content is a big problem on the web and one of the main reasons sites fail to rank well online. Google explicitly states that they prefer content that is unique, valuable and engaging. Copying content from external domains and publishing as your own is not only plagiarism but it is the antithesis of SEO. Google can immediately distinguish copied or scraped content. So what’s the difference between copied and scraped? Copied text is identical. Scraped text might be altered in some way, but still holds the same general patterns and many similarities. Don’t think you can fool the search engine this way. Instead, write content that is

  • Engaging
  • Relevant
  • Unique
  • Valuable

You may feel that you don’t have time to write content for your website. There are marketing firms that provide content marketing services for Dallas businesses. In fact, Dallas Fort Worth is one of those firms. We believe that content quality is a fundamental component of SEO success. For content to be considered high quality, it must not only be grammatically correct, but also highly relevant to the website’s general subject. If your business belongs to specific industry, the content must accurately depict its intricacies. Readers can tell the difference between good and bad content fairly easily. Google values the highest quality content.

Tip #4 – Hire a Web Designer

We’ve seen an emergence of do-it-yourself website builders in recent years. They’re thought of as solutions for small business owners both in Dallas and throughout the world. While we aren’t outright condemning their existence, we know first-hand that they lack the SEO potential of an original web design. That’s why we recommend hiring a Dallas web designer to handle your custom business website. Many things go into a website that happen behind the scenes. Aspects of this process are known as technical SEO, and without it, your ranking potential is severely hindered. Here are some reasons why you should hire a professional web designer:

  • Coding
  • Originality
  • SEO
  • Navigation

Pre-made templates are cheaper right off the bat, but once you get 6 months to a year later, you’ve ended up losing far more money than you would’ve spent. Trying to nickel & dime your way to the #1 Google spot is not realistic. But it makes sense why some businesses would find the cheapest option appealing. They feel like they’re cutting costs. But in 2019, it seems that many owners are smartening up and understanding that proper marketing is actually critical to their bottom line, and digital marketing is at the forefront of all of that.

Tip #5 – Use Keyword Research Tools

Keywords are still fundamental to proper SEO but their dynamic has changed significantly in the last 5 years. It used to be that keywords were really the only way for Google to interpret the content of a web page. This is no longer the case. Google still needs to see keywords to properly rank the page, but it now wants to see supporting synonyms and a robustly written page of content that surrounds those high volume terms. Better pages are more readable and are therefore more valuable to the user. Since Google prioritizes the user first and foremost, they will support pages that satisfy user needs. Utilize the following tools for keyword research:

  • LSIGraph
  • MOZ Keyword Explorer
  • SEMRush
  • UberSuggest

Some of the tools above might look familiar, others might not. LSIGraph is a nontraditional keyword research tool that provides terms and phrases that are semantically related to primary keywords. We touched on the need for synonyms in high ranking page content, and LSIGraph is a tool to help you integrate those kinds of words. MOZ & SEMRush are more traditional tools that provide the volume and opportunity for keywords, along with suggestions. UberSuggest is a free tool that emulates SEMRush. It is not quite as accurate, but good for Dallas business owners who don’t have money to spend on a research tool.

Tip #6 – Create Inbound Links

There was a time during Google’s early onset were the only measure of a website’s authority was the quantity of inbound links pointing to its domain. Google has gotten much more sophisticated about judging links these days, but make no mistake, they still make a major difference. Today, it’s not as much about quantity (all though that still matters) as it is about quality. For instance, a link from a Dallas trade association to your local business is more valuable than a random blogger from Canada. Why? Because the former example signifies relevance and transfers authority. The latter is really nothing more than an inconsequential reference. Here are some platforms through which to build inbound links:

  • Business Directories
  • Guest Blog Posts
  • Press Releases
  • Trade Associations

The best way to earn links in 2019 is to produce excellent long-form content. These content pieces have a great chance to go viral, especially when pushed through social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn. One way to increase the virality of content is to utilize video and audio integration. Try embedding videos from YouTube onto your blog posts for demonstration purposes. As for business directories, look to BBB, Yelp, and other highly renowned platforms to build a profile. In most cases, you can claim your free profile on directories like these. While they don’t have the same “link juice” as a guest post for example, they still transfer authority. Some links automatically have nofollow tags, which means they count less towards domain authority.

For Help With Dallas SEO, Call Dallas-Fort Worth SEO at 800.231.4871

Posted: | Updated: Dec 3, 2018 | Categories: SEO

What is SEO Writing?

As a small business owner in Dallas or Fort Worth, TX, you may have heard the phrase SEO writing uttered in reference to digital marketing. It’s safe to assume that most business owners in 2018-2019 have heard of “SEO” or search engine optimization, but how many of them understand it in the context of writing? Google has often promoted their ideals as content-driven, and while content can infer images, videos, and other forms of media, content will always remain synonymous with on page text. Although we’ve come a long way as an industry in regards to content development and marketing, there are still ways to write SEO-friendly content without resorting to old-school tactics like keyword stuffing.

What is SEO Writing Blog Cover

Like with every component of SEO, evolution has taken place, and will continue to, over time. SEO writing in 2008 is far different than it is today. Truth be told, if someone were to follow and SEO writing manual from a decade prior, they would likely be slapped with a manual penalty from Google. At the very least, they would fail to rank for any of the keywords they aimed to secure, and would make their entire website seem unprofessional, antiquated, and worst of all; anti-user. Since Google’s affiliation is to their users first and foremost, user-friendliness is priority number one, and that remains true when writing SEO-friendly content in 2019, and beyond.

SEO Writing Principles

The principles of SEO writing have evolved over the years, but some elements have remained constant. For one, you want to get the keyword listed within the text. It should match your SEO title (title tag) and should also be listed in your meta description. Another aspect of SEO writing that has continued is image alt text. You should write the keyword as an alt tag on relevant images. For this reason, you want to use images that reference the topic of the page you are writing. This is true with both regular web pages as well as blog posts. Another important principle is formatting, sometimes referred to as structuring. You want your content to be easily readable and easily crawlable by Google search crawlers. The usage of header tags (which should also contain a keyword) and bullet points, helps make formatting superior for everyone involved. Review the unchanged principles of SEO writing:

  • Formatting / Structuring
  • Keyword Placement
  • Uniformity (Matches other SEO elements)

How Has SEO Writing Changed in 2019

The fundamentals listed above have been part of SEO since its inception, but as the methodology has evolved to better suit the needs of users, the standard of writing has increased significantly. You still need formatting, keywords, and uniformity, but it’s far more in depth than it used to be. Today, formatting is more commonly known is structured data, which can even incorporate with the technical side of SEO and be integrated with schema.or microdata. Keywords are still necessary, but over-using them is now a strongly discouraged. Instead of inserting the keyword over and over again within content, it should be used sparingly and supplemented with synonyms. The theory behind usage of synonyms is known as LSI or lemantic search indexing, also sometimes referred to simply as; semantic search. Another factor of greater importance is content quality. Google’s ultimate goal is to rank the material that is the best written, meaning the most engaging, relevant and unique. In summary, SEO writing has changed in 2019 in the following areas:

  • LSI: Keywords should now be surrounded by synonyms, to satisfy a concept known as semantic search indexing
  • Quality: The standard of writing is much higher, in terms of grammar, engagement, and uniqueness
  • Relevance: Google can now distinguish content that relates to the page topic from content filled with out-of-context keywords

Writing for SEO in 2019

With a better understanding of how it has evolved, writing for SEO should be easier to understand. Still, many are looking for SEO writing tips so that they can outrank competitors on search engine results pages (SERPs). Before getting into specifics, aligning your core strategy with Google’s ideology should be priority #1. Writing content for the user rather than the search engine should be the central theme of your process. As the algorithm continues to evolve (approximately 500 updates per year), following the outlined protocol is an ideal long-term strategy. Long form content is now being rewarded more than ever before, and shorter articles are You should abide by the following SEO tips for 2019:

  • Deep Dive Content: Write longer posts and pages that delve deeply into the subject matter
  • Focus On The User: Let the needs of the user drive the direction of your writing
  • Organize & Structure: Make your writing easy to consume through proper organization
  • Semantic Search Optimization: Use LSI keywords for a more robust piece of content

SEO Writing Tips 2019 Infographic

SEO Writing Examples

Below you can see the difference between an SEO-friendly paragraph, and one that is awful:

SEO-Friendly Writing

If your home has been exposed to water damage, it is critical to contact a water restoration service as soon as possible. The damages from flooding can be long-lasting and expensive, which is why addressing the problem immediately is the most ideal course of action. Neglecting flood damage can produce hazardous results, such as mold growth and a deterioration of air quality. These symptoms can be a serious threat to residents of the household.

Awful Writing

Water damage services near me is the best way to restore flood damage in your home. We are the #1 water damage service in the area and are able to repair water damage when you call us right now. We serve your location as the top company in (city). If you need water restoration services today don’t hesitate to give us call at your earliest convenience. We provide cheap water damage services.

SEO Writing Services

Whether you are looking for blog posts, articles, or web content of any kind, Dallas Fort Worth SEO is here to do the job. In fact, it is included in our SEO marketing services in Dallas. We strongly believe that SEO writing should be part of a larger digital marketing strategy that involves all aspects of SEO, including those beyond the written word. With an in-house staff of experts in the fields of web design, Google optimization, PPC management, and local maps, we have the full toolbox ready for small businesses throughout the Metroplex. Call 800.231.4871 to learn more.

14 SEO Tactics That Don’t Work

As a Dallas – Fort Worth digital marketing agency, we’ve had our share of clients come to us with complaints about previous marketing ventures. In fact, most of our current clients have had at least one negative marketing experience prior to joining our team. Some of them want to give up on online marketing altogether and have to be convinced of its inherent upsides. Others want to continue marketing, but have grown tired of the negative ROI that was being produced by our predecessors. If you are a small business owner who can relate to these concerns, we offer SEO marketing in Dallas. As a token of our appreciation for you and the litany of clients who have endured inadequate SEO tactics for years, we present 47 SEO tactics that don’t work:

14 SEO Tactics That Don't Work Blog Cover

Blog Filler

Blogging is good when done right, but far too often, it is done wrong. Many writers think that they can create a short blog post that targets a keyword, and that Google will consider it a good page of content. Not likely. But don’t be fooled into thinking long form posts will work either. They won’t unless the content is of the highest quality and is well structured and informative.

City Pages (Mass Produced)

There was once a time when mass-produced city pages were actually good for SEO. Those times are gone. Although Google’s crack down on these pages is relatively recent, it aligns appropriately with their philosophical mantra. How can a bunch of trashy city pages enhance user experience? Answer: They Can’t. It’s been a long time coming for Google to drop the hammer, and we’re glad they did. You should still use location pages, but they must be unique.

City Stuffing

Forget city pages for a moment because right now we’d like to talk about city stuffing. This refers to a homepage that tries to optimize for two or more cities. Guess what, Google’s not buying it. They want separate location pages (good ones) with subfolders for each city. The homepage should go for one city only, and if you are in a densely populated city, you need a new strategy.

Content Spinning

If we are going to pinpoint the death of competent SEO, we can probably trace it directly to the advent of content spinning software. These “spinners” take content that was written and flip the words around to prevent duplicate content (or try to). The problem is that the language produced is not English, Spanish, or French, it’s gibberish. Worse yet, the content is still looked at as duplicate because Google is simply not that dumb.

Doorway Pages

Some SEO’s create additional websites as a doorway to the main site. This ends up hurting everything instead of helping anything. Usually they use a cheap template site for the doorways, and try to go for keywords that the main site doesn’t currently rank for. Again, Google is not buying what you’re selling, and the result is not something you want to explore.

Expired Domains

Sometimes marketers will buy expiring domains in hopes of retrieving the regular traffic and reappropriating it as a different service or concept. Google knows you’re doing this, and not only that, but the users expecting the old site will be disgusted by what they see. They will exit immediately, increasing your bounce rate, and further convincing Google that your website is worthless. But what about similar sites? Hey, that’s more of a grey area, but we wouldn’t recommend it.

Hidden Text

Someone at your last service thought white text would hide keywords from the user, but still force the search engine to index them. Oh they index them alright, right into their manual penalty section. The attempted manipulation is so egregious, and the disrespect of the perpetrator is shamelessly arrogant. To think Google is that stupid is an abomination of search engine optimization.

Keyword Stuffing

It’s pretty simple, shoving keywords everywhere possible within your content will not only discourage Google from ranking the page, but possibly inspire them to slam you with a manual penalty. Good luck digging yourself out of that hole once it’s imposed. There’s no plea of ignorance that will suffice for something so blatant and contradictory to a positive user experience.

Link Scheming

Are you a farmer? Thought so. Since you aren’t, you shouldn’t be farming links to your domain or from it. These spam links are pure trash and Google has already destroyed the livelihoods of those who utilized them back in 2012. Have they let up a little bit in recent years? Quite possibly. But don’t think you’re getting one over on Google. They might not penalize websites for links, but they will ignore them altogether, meaning there’s no benefit to trying.

Negative SEO Attacks

Some bright-mind at your last firm might’ve tried a negative SEO attack on one of your competitors. They sent spam links from sketchy sources to your competitors domain. They might’ve even used anchor text like “this website is garbage” or something similar. It’s funny that any marketer could think Google would be gullible enough to penalize an innocent website for links.

Website Factories

We all love Wix and Weebly, but don’t expect to rank well with their websites. Why? They are template based sites and they tend to only succeed when associated with big brands that have an official website. The code structure on these sites is identical to hundred of thousands of others across the web, and inspire zero uniqueness. Sure, it’s a major financial incentive to choose a free site maker, but the ROI just isn’t there.

Website Templates

Speaking of templates, Wix and Weebly are not the only platforms that utilize them. Even WordPress, which is the Content Management System we use to design custom sites, partakes in the usage of for-sale web templates. Since WordPress is open source, anyone can make a theme based on the infrastructure, and sell it privately under their own name. That’s why most of the websites we see from prospective clients are using $60 WordPress templates, and fail to rank for any good keywords.

Review Gating

There’s some review software out there that will redirect the reviewer to a survey if they leave a review of less than 3 stars (or whatever number the programmer decides). The idea of this is to prevent bad reviews from ever reaching Google or Facebook. Google cracked down on this tactic and will now penalize websites and Google My Business profiles utilizing it. So don’t be one of them.

Sneaky Redirects

Do you have a website about business supplies and some hot shot marketer thought they could get more traffic by redirecting users from casino sites? In cases like these, the marketer will create pages for gambling and redirect the users to your business supplies websites. It’s an archaic strategy that has not worked since the Bush administration, and didn’t work well then.

Dallas SEO Consultant For Business Owners

14 is only a small percentage of the SEO tactics that don’t work. We know of many more. If you don’t think you want a full time SEO agency handling your marketing campaign, maybe consulting would be a better avenue for you. As a top Dallas SEO consultant, we can guide you through the constantly evolving space that is Google search. It’s necessary to have someone looking out for the latest trends and algorithms imposed by the mothership that is Google. We will be working on your behalf, and always be looking out for your best interests. We can help navigate small businesses in the Dallas – Fort Worth, Texas area through murky SEO waters.

There’s several areas of expertise that we can focus on. Whether you’d like to know more about why you website is not optimally designed, or why your title tags don’t translate to page one rankings, we can offer advice. Furthermore, we can talk about more cutting edge aspects of SEO like company branding, digital assets analysis, and Facebook pixel tracking. We have clients throughout the DFW Metroplex, and are happy to have you come on board as well. Since we know the local area so well, we might have insights that cannot be replicated with a “national” marketing firm. We hope to hear from you. Just call 800.231.4871 right now!

Posted: | Updated: Nov 21, 2018 | Categories: SEO

What is SEO Marketing?

SEO marketing is the process of promoting a brand, company, or service through search engine optimization. It is considered one of the most popular forms of marketing in the United States, including Dallas, TX. For those unfamiliar with SEO, it refers to the refinement of digital content for the purposes of improving visibility on Google, and to a far lesser degree; Bing and Yahoo.

Search engine optimization has many facets, but it’s most commonly associated with on page ranking factors like title tags, header tags, meta descriptions, and keyword density. Despite the strong association with on page content, those in the industry understand that off page factors have just as much influence on a website’s ability to rank well, if not more. Tasks commonly referred to as off site SEO, include link building, social media posts, business citations, and local mapping. Platforms like Google My Business, Google Maps, and Facebook Business are strong indicators of trust to search engines, and therefore directly correlate with your search engine visibility. Having established what SEO is, we can now more effectively describe how it’s used for marketing purposes, specifically for Dallas small businesses.

Google SERP Features Graphic

SERP Configuration

To understand SEO marketing, you must first understand the acronym SERP and its intended meaning. SERP stands for search engine results page and is the webpage produced after clicking search on Google. SERPs are presented on mobile, tablet, and desktop devices, but often vary in presentation on each. A page one SERP for a high volume keyword is the most coveted piece of online real estate. It’s a business owners best chance to market through SEO. Take a look at a page on SERP, as presented on desktop:

Google SERP Example Branded

As you can see there’s 3 different SERP features on which to market on this particular page. Depending on the search query, additional features will become available. On this page above, the 3 features are PPC Ads, Organic Results, and the Knowledge Graph. Because the search query above was the name of our own company, it is considered a branded search. Searches like these generally produce the aforementioned Knowledge Graph, which is an extension of your company’s Google My Business profile. It’s a great way to generate visibility on SERPs.

Google Ads (PPC)

The results labeled ad above are known as PPC ads. They are part of Google Ads, formerly known as Google AdWords, a bidding service that allows companies to pay there way to the top. The highest bidder doesn’t necessarily get the top spot however, as Google has regulations in place to reward advertisements based on quality and relevance in addition to bid. This gives companies who design engaging ads that best meet the user’s need a fair chance against businesses whose only advantage is capital. Although PPC ads tend to have lower click-through-rates than page one organic results, they allow companies to guarantee a spot on page one, which is critical.

Organic Results (SEO)

The results marked in numbers 1-6 are known as organic results. Google doesn’t accept advertisements for these results, but rather presents them based on their algorithmic relevance to the particular search query. In layman’s term, Google’s artificial intelligence pulls the results they deem to be most relevant to the search, and will be most helpful to the user, hence the term organic. The click-through-rates for page one organic results are far higher than PPC ads. As users have become more informed and educated, they’ve developed the sense that organic results are the most legitimate, and give them the best chance of high quality and relevant information.

Knowledge Graph

The 3rd SERP feature present on the image above is the Knowledge Graph. The KG is a snippet of a company’s Google My Business page, and serves as an important indicator of brand awareness. When a user performs a branded search, in most cases they are already aware of the company in some way. The KG can influence their perception of the company by either maintaining it, enhancing it, or diminishing it. The best way to ensure a favorable Knowledge Graph presentation is to have your Google My Business page optimized with NAP information, along with high quality photos.

Additional SERP Features

A SERP can vary based on a number of factors including location, device, and language. That’s why not every SERP is identical, even if it is related to a similar subject matter. Google has improved its algorithm to match the intent of the user more effectively than ever before. The diversification of results has lead to more marketing opportunities on search engines. It’s also created more competition. It’s not accidental, that these two things have paralleled one another. Take a look at these SERPs with additional features:

 

Google SERP Example Local

As a business owner in the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex, every position on a SERP serves as digital real estate. Just like the first organic result can generate excellent traffic to your website, so too can a featured snippet, which serves as a de facto #1 ranking. Another concept to keep in mind is SERP presentation. Google has made is possible for webmasters to mark up results so they become more appealing to the user than others. As a local business, you should be doing everything possible to make sure your result is one that stands out.

Local 3 Pack

As we noted, different types of searches present different types of features. For example, a generalized local search will produce an additional feature known as the local 3 pack. This is a group of the top 3 Google Maps listings along with a snippet of their aggregate review rating. For local searchers, this 3 pack represents one of the most convenient ways to find a relevant business. For this reason, claiming and optimizing your business on Google My Business and verifying your location on Google Maps is imperative. You should also be pursuing legitimate customer reviews to get placement on the coveted local 3 pack. Our Righteous Reviews widget can help you accomplish this.

Rich Snippet

If you’ve ever noticed that certain results have something extra, you’ve witnessed a rich snippet. For example, an aggregate review rating in the form of 5 stars is a rich snippet. These can be integrated on website pages through the use of schema.org, which is a microdata language that webmasters incorporate as a way to communicate with Google. If your website has no rich snippets, it’s likely due to a lack of schema microdata within your site’s coding. Hiring a professional web designer can ensure that the microdata is implemented, and that rich snippets start appearing on some of your search results.

Google Shopping Ads

Google Ads has an extension of their platform that produces shopping results. This feature exists primarily for businesses who sell products online via eCommerce. Like text-based PPC ads, shopping ads are awarded partially based on the company who places the highest bid, but also factors in the quality and relevance of a listing. If you sell products online, shopping ads should be part of your overall paid advertising strategy. Although Amazon is the far more popular eCommerce platform, people often research products based on Google shopping results. It is something that businesses in certain industries should consider moving forward.

Featured Snippet

For question-based queries, like those that start with who, what, where, when, how, an additional feature often becomes present. This feature is aptly known as a featured snippet. It is a box on the top of the SERP that answers the users question using a block of text pulled from a website. Google programmatically selects text from a website based on their own algorithm. There’s no way to buy your way into a featured snippet placement. It can only be achieved by writing informative and educational content on your website that answers a common question. The best way to earn a featured snippet is to pose a question in your H1 or H2, and answer it with text or bullet points in the subsequent paragraph.

Google SERP Example Featured

 

Q & A Box (People Also Ask)

Search queries that produce a featured snippet will also produce a People Also Ask box which lists related questions that are similar but not identical to the search query. The answers to these questions become visible when the user clicks the down arrow on their right hand side. Like with featured snippets, these answers are pulled programmatically from a website based on relevance and presented as a block of text. Not every question is answered by the same website. Google pulls what they deem to be the best answer to each question, which often results in a variety of websites being represented within a Q & A box. The same process used to optimize for featured snippets should be used to earn Q & A answers.

Need Help With SEO Marketing in Dallas?

Dallas Fort Worth SEO provides marketing services to businesses in Dallas, TX and surrounding areas. Our pricing is based on your company’s revenue to assure affordability for everyone interested in improving their online presence. All the SERP features mentioned throughout this blog post can be achieved through DFW SEO’s services. We are a team of 15-20 experts with diverse skill sets. From organic ranking, paid advertising, and local mapping, we put our clients in the best position to succeed while continuing to evolve alongside Google’s latest algorithm updates. Learn more about our services by calling 800.231.4871.

 

 

Posted: | Updated: Oct 29, 2018 | Categories: SEO

7 Social Media Stats For Small Business Owners

Social media is constantly evolving, and small business owners in Dallas – Fort Worth must learn how to leverage this medium to enhance their marketing campaigns. Since social media marketing is available toe everyone, it is one of the easiest and least expensive ways to grow your local business online. But before delving into the most recent social media data for businesses, we first must concede that social media as a marketing platform is free-flowing, and therefore, ways to best utilize it are constantly evolving. Before examining the statistics, let’s take a look at the top social media platforms of 2018:

Pew Research Center Social Graph

 

% of U.S. adults who use the following platforms as of 2018:

Social Media Usage for US Adults GraphsFacebook: 68%

Instagram: 35%

LinkedIn: 25%

Pinterest: 29%

SnapChat: 27%

Twitter: 24%

YouTube: 73%

WhatsApp: 22%

  1. 1. Of the U.S adults who use Facebook, 75% of them access their profile on a daily basis

Analysis – This data is hard to apply because of Facebook’s recent shift in algorithm which all but eliminates the organic reach of business posts. Facebook has focused on peer to peer interaction rather than business to consumer. Still, with the amount of users continuing to access their Facebook profile each day, companies must still devote an appropriate amount of resources to their FB business page. While organic reach is no longer a path to lead generation, the presence of a well optimized business page remains important for brand awareness

  1. 2. Instagram’s usage among U.S adults has grown by 7% in only 2 years, an increase unrivaled by any other social network

Analysis – Instagram is unquestionably the fastest growing social network, and this is a trend we can expect to continue its ascendance for the foreseeable future. IG business pages are now fully supported by the platform, making it easier than ever before for small businesses to join and market on the network. Business profiles are free, and unlike Facebook, your content has a decent chance to reach your followers, assuming that you are able to grow a base of followers in the first place. It’s best to recalibrate your resources to account for Instagram’s growing base.

  1. 3. Of Americans with a college degree, 50% use LinkedIn, as opposed to the 9% non-graduate Americans who use the platform

Analysis – Since LinkedIn is an employment based networking platform, some might read these numbers as an indictment against the non-graduate. These numbers don’t imply that non-graduates aren’t looking for employment, they are just looking through other channels. But since small businesses are part of LinkedIn’s target audience, it makes all the sense to brand your company on the network. Building business to business relationships, as well as finding highly qualified employees, can only help your bottom line.

  1. 4. 41% of women use Pinterest as opposed to only 16% of men, highlighting the largest gender gap of any prominent social media platform

Analysis – Small businesses should study their audience demographics, including gender. Who’s most likely to contact your service, is it a male or female, and what is their age? These are all questions every business should be asking, and supporting via tracked data. If your business does in fact often receive inquiries from women, it’s a good idea to establish a brand on Pinterest, even if you wouldn’t otherwise think to use the platform for business purposes. Every percentage you can earn above your competitor, brings you closer to the level of success for which your marketing campaign aims.

  1. 5. 49% of SnapChat users access their account more than once per day

Analysis – Nothing to see here for most small businesses. Since the network’s demographic leans exceedingly young, only companies whose target consumer is within the 18-24 age range should distribute resources to the platform. The general consensus among industry experts is that SnapChat is a community made up predominantly of tennagers, which eliminates many small businesses from the equation. There are however outliers that of course have a younger demographic, and therefore should go with the data takes them.

  1. 6. 73% of Twitter users say they also use Instagram

Analysis – Target these users on Instagram, instead of Twitter. All the engagement research says the same thing. Twitter is a network for celebrity engagement, while Instagram empowers the individual and in this case, the small business. That’s not to say you should ignore Twitter entirely, there’s just considerable limitations to your organic reach on this network. Much like Facebook, reaching followers organically through business posts is unlikely. Besides, tweets are published so frequently, that they become old news within minutes. Use Twitter to brand your company and to syndicate announcements made on other platforms.

  1. 7. YouTube, on mobile alone, reaches more 18-49 year olds than any cable network in the U.S.

Analysis – This data is astounding, and points to the new normal for video marketing. You don’t have to be a major brand to get video content in front of viewers in 2018, because it can be done easily with YouTube uploads. Of course, because so many users engage with the platform, the competition is fierce. To really create engagement on your YouTube channel it’s going to take time and dedication, along with a consistent effort to produce high-quality content. With advancements in smartphones, recording videos is easier than ever before, and several free apps also support the editing and branding of videos.

Social Media Marketing For DFW Businesses

If any of these stats make you wonder about your own company’s social media strategy, you should get in contact with Dallas – Fort Worth SEO today. We provide social media marketing services to small businesses throughout the Metroplex. As a forward-thinking service, we’ve crafted adaptable social media strategies to many businesses over the past decade. Utilizing Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube, we’ve helped companies connect with their consumers on their preferred mediums.

Aside from social media marketing, DFW SEO also provides social media advertising, specifically on Facebook. Because of the network’s shift in philosophy, reaching consumers organically through brand posts has become all but impossible. One solution is to invest resources in Facebook advertising, which makes sure your business and its services are being seen by Facebook’s massive user base. Call 800.231.4871 for social media marketing or advertising service in Dallas, Fort Worth, TX and the surrounding area.

Posted: | Updated: Jul 10, 2018 | Categories: Social Media

Google AdWords is Now Google Ads

Electronic Devices on Desk

AdWords Will Be Shortened To “Ads” From Now On

Google announced today that AdWords has been rebranded to Google Ads. This seemingly minor name alteration is part of the company’s large-scale efforts to simplify brands and facilitate solutions for advertisers and publishers. Google cites several driving factors that prompted this decision:

  • Advertising Opportunities: There’s simply more opportunities to advertise than their were 18 years ago, and users alternate dynamically between browsing, search, and video
  • Consumer Engagement: The buying journey has grown more complex in recent years, and Google aims to facilitate engagement at every point
  • Mobile Usage: During AdWords initial onset, mobile web browsing was virtually non-existent, and today, it represents the overwhelming majority

The change from AdWords to Ads is not the only branding adjustment announced by Google. They will also introduce Google Marketing Platform which will consolidate DoubleClick advertising products and Google Analytics 360 Suite. Additionally, DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange will be unified as Google Ad Manager.

Google Ads

Adwords is a widely recognized brand, and so its renaming to Google Ads is notable. The new brand will represent Google’s advertising capability in its entirety, including apps and partner sites that were generally not considered part of the AdWords brand. In its newest iteration, Google Ads aims to reach users through the following mediums

  • Google Maps
  • Google Play
  • Google Search
  • YouTube
  • Web Browsers

As part of the rebrand, a new campaign edition will be made available to small businesses. The objective is to eliminate some of the more complicated aspects of campaign management for businesses with less resources. Google is expected to expound on its details in their July 10th Google Marketing Live stream.

Google Marketing Platform

DoubleClick and Analytics 360 Suite are exclusive entities no more. With Google’s bombshell announcement, the two programs will merge together to form a more perfect union of advertising and analytics. This new concoction will be known as Google Marketing Platform. The tool will expand on pre-existing integrations between the former DoubleClick and Analytics 360 Suite, respectively. GMP will empower digital marketers to:

  • Buy
  • Measure
  • Plan
  • Optimize

As an add-on to GMP, yet another program known as “Display & Video 360” will be added to the mix, and its purpose is to help businesses consolidate their campaign efforts. Features present in DoubleClick Audience Center, Bid Manager, and Campaign Manager Studio, will be integrated into Display & Video 360, a tool which we should learn more about at Google Marketing Live.

Google Ad Manager

The third and final brand announced by Google is Google Ad Manager which will combine the features of DoubleClick Ad Exchange and DoubleClick for Publishers. The tool will focus on the new generation of content, including:

  • Mobile Apps
  • Multi-Platform Video
  • And More

GAM is designed to assist Google Partners in more effectively monetizing content distribution and corresponding platforms. From on-demand videos across multiple screen sizes, to mobile-based game apps on both phone and tablet, advertisements must be able to adapt dynamically. Google Ad Manager will help companies execute this adaptation more seamlessly.

What Does This Mean For Dallas – Fort Worth Businesses?

Small business owners throughout the DFW Metroplex should be undeterred by this branding announcement. The functions of Google Ads (Formerly AdWords) will remain effective, and likely become simpler to execute. Similarly, the mergers of several DoubleClick programs along with Google Analytics 360 Suite, will empower DFW business owners to monetize every checkpoint on a consumer’s buying journey. If you require assistance with any aspect of internet marketing, call DFW SEO at 800.231.4871.

Posted: | Updated: Jun 27, 2018 | Categories: AdWords, PPC

How Voice Search Might Impact Dallas SEO

Dallas SEO Experts Optimize for Voice Search

Voice Searches Will Fundamentally Alter Search Marketing

The emergence of virtual assistants such as Amazon Echo and Google Assistant will change how we approach search engine optimization. While SEO is no stranger to fluidity, prior landscape-shifters, such as the mobile revolution, were less fundamental. Although access level and medium changed drastically, the user’s objective remained consistent. Voice search’s influence is more uncertain and the industry is still learning how users interact with these devices, and what it should mean for search engine marketing strategy. Factors will include:

The question for Dallas-based small businesses is; how will virtual assistants impact search engine optimization? Based on projections, the answer is; significantly. From Google’s knowledge graphs and local 3-pack, to schema.org and structured data markup, digital marketers should prepare to embark on a philosophical shift from SEO as we know it. Here’s what to consider at the mid-point of 2018:

Actions on Google / Amazon Skills

Since virtual assistants’ usage expands further beyond search queries, the phrase “voice search” is somewhat limiting. Consumers are using these devices for everything from commands to conversations, which widens the volume of digital interactions. Both Amazon and Google have empowered businesses to develop signature applications to interact with consumers. Through Actions on Google, companies can:

  1. 1. Design a Conversation
  2. 2. Define Actions
  3. 3. Build & Deploy Fulfillment
  4. 4. Publish Custom App (Pending Approval)

The process for Amazon’s “Alexa Skills” is similar to Actions on Google’s, and includes a direct avenue for profit with Amazon Pay. For small businesses in Dallas – Fort Worth, investing marketing dollars into voice recognition apps could prove a worthwhile resource allocation. With voice searches expected to eclipse 50% of all searches by 2020, the time to stake your claim is now.

Content Marketing

Voice queries should impact content marketing strategies. Adding conversational content to each website section helps improve voice search visibility. One aspect of content marketing that has become increasingly important is the featured snippet which we will detail in greater length below. Rethinking how we market content will be important in seizing the opportunity voice search presents. Behaviors once considered commonplace will be rendered obsolete, which should influence various components, including:

  • Information: Most content should be informational in nature, which increases the likelihood of being pulled by an assistant
  • Keywords: Content should move away from exact keywords since voice queries will be posed with more conversational language
  • Navigation: Content should facilitate a voice user’s journey from consumer to customer

“Alexa, find me a Dallas SEO company” is how a dialogue might begin. Once our service is pulled by Amazon from Google, the next question might be “Alexa, what kind of SEO do they do?” and our content will be expected to provide that answer efficiently. As you might imagine, failure to fulfill a user’s request at any point throughout the buying journey can result in a lost conversion.

Featured Snippets

An estimated 41% of voice queries come from featured snippets. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a featured snippet is a block of text pulled by Google from a website, and highlighted for display atop a search engine results page. Featured snippets are most often displayed on informational queries like “how, who, what, where, when, why, etc.” There is no way to designate content as a featured snippet since text blocks are chosen programmatically by Google. There are however steps one can take to give their content the best chance to be featured:

  • Answer Questions: Ask a question in an H1 or H2, and answer it in the subsequent paragraph
  • Fulfill Needs: Ask yourself what consumers need from your website, and provide it through content
  • Organize Information: Make it simple for Google to identify important pieces of content, such as contact information

Featured snippets hold value exclusive from voice search because their presence functions as a de facto #1 Google ranking from a traditional SEO perspective. Their inclusion in many voice results multiplies that value exponentially and transforms them from a point of consideration, to the top priority. Organizing your website with FAQ sections helps generate plenty of questions and answers that address potential user queries and increases search visibility moving forward.

How DFW SEO Can Help

If you run a small business in the Dallas – Fort Worth Metroplex, DFW SEO can help you transition into the next phase of search engine optimization. From content marketing, to structured data markup, we combine innovation and skill to produce the ultimate internet marketing strategy for 2018. Furthermore, you can count on us to continue to monitor trends and keep your business ahead of competitors in every area of digital marketing.

Day-to-day operations consume most business owner’s regular schedule. Performing digital marketing tasks is a challenge in of itself, not to mention staying up-to-date on the latest trends. Outsourcing your online presence to DFW SEO alleviates much of the burden and keeps you involved with the approach and vision of your marketing campaign. Call 800.231.4871 for the top Dallas SEO Agency in the Metroplex..

Posted: | Updated: Jan 14, 2019 | Categories: SEO

Google’s Mobile Revolution

Google Mobile Revolution GraphicMore than 3 years ago, on April 21, 2015, Google began to roll out its mobile-friendly update. Marketers throughout the blogosphere referred to the event as Mobilegeddon, anticipating its impact on defiant websites. Google was exceptionally transparent in what the update would entail, whom it would effect, and what could be done to adapt to it. Citing their Mobile-Friendly Test as a point of reference, the search engine’s objective was not to punish companies slow to conform to an increasingly popular medium, but instead to enhance the experience of its users, who were migrating to mobile search in massive numbers. The update cited 3 points of emphasis:

  • Affects Only Search Rankings on Mobile Devices
  • Affects Search Results in All Languages Globally
  • Applies To Individual Pages, Not Entire Websites

While the update’s application was algorithmic in nature, its impact was cultural and philosophical. Still, a misconception exists about whether Google was setting a trend, or reacting to one. On May 5, 2015, less than a month after the update’s initial roll out, Google publicly stated that more searches take place on mobile devices than on computers. This declaration illustrated that Google’s shift in philosophy was reactive rather than proactive, conflicting what many of its detractors initially suspected. The revelation cemented Google’s priority of enhancing user experience which would be the source of each of its subsequent mobile initiatives.

Impact of Mobilegeddon

Because Google issued a warning about its mobile-friendly update, more than 2 months before the April 21 roll out, web developers had time to prepare for its implementation. More importantly however, tech companies and bloggers had time to catastrophize the update’s impact, and anticipate the worst possible outcomes. While the name “Mobilegeddon” turned out to be inappropriate, seeing that ranking’s were not exceedingly influenced, its imprint on digital culture set the stage for the search engine’s continued emphasis on mobile usability. There’s reason to believe the update’s roll out, and its anticipation, played out exactly how Google intendend, and here’s why:

  • It Initiated Change: Incentive was given for web developers to adapt to user’s evolving needs
  • It Managed Crisis: It’s relatively tame actualization prevented intense blowback
  • It Stuck To Principles: The basis of its inspiration was undeterred

The update served as the groundwork for a larger institutional shift, and one that would be less resisted when applied gradually. By prompting web developers and companies to address mobile usability, the foundation was set for subsequent improvement of the mobile experience. The foresight of Google to manage resistance while remaining on task speaks to their level of influence on digital marketing. As the world’s top search engine, and source of leads for businesses across the globe, its platform can influence change like few others. The lesson from “Mobilegeddon” is that the change doesn’t have to occur all at once, and is actually better suited to be instituted incrementally.

An Ongoing Initiative

Google Mobile Revolution TimelineGoogle’s first mobile-friendly update was the beginning of an ongoing initiative to improve the experience of mobile users. In March of 2016, a little bit more than a year after the first roll out, Google announced that it would boost its mobile-friendly ranking signal. It stressed that websites who had already established mobile usability would not be affected by this second update. It once again offered assistance to web developers yet to incorporate mobile design into their online presence. Since more than a year had passed since Google’s initial roll out, websites impacted by the signal boost had willfully ignored warnings to improve the following:

  • Mobile Navigation: User’s ability to simply navigate the website via mobile device
  • Mobile Presentation: The site’s view from the perspective of the mobile user
  • Mobile Site Speed: The expediency with which the website loads once clicked

Response the the 2nd update was less pronounced and less panicked than it was to its predecessor. By this time, most web developers understood the importance of mobile design, and that consumer’s increased mobile usage dictated a necessary reaction. With the initial roll out starting more than a year prior, and a warning of its immanency published even earlier, a failure to take steps toward mobile website usability represented either willful ignorance or dissension. As it stands, the implementation of Google’s mobile-friendly update is one of their premier accomplishments, and was handled as well as anyone could expect.

Accelerated Mobile Pages

Around the time Google boosted its mobile-friendly ranking signal (Q1 2016), the search engine was introducing a new project known as Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP). The idea was to speed up web pages, in general, to more effectively meet the needs of mobile users. The AMP project established HTML code regulations, recommending users develop web pages using stripped-down code, in which certain obtrusive elements were disallowed. The result was mobile pages that appeared to load instantly, which while was not literally true, was effective nonetheless. Despite its skeptics, the general consensus is that it works as intended, which means specifically:

  • It Enhances User Experience: The standard by which Google unwaveringly grades itself
  • It’s Really Fast: As stated previously, AMP’s appear to load instantly, even if it’s an optical illusion
  • It’s Truly Open Source: The difference between not having a walled garden and “come to my walled garden,” as articulated by Google VP of news Richard Gingras

Detractors of the project cite Google’s ambiguous financial motives as reason to pause. Although it is open source, and especially so, as articulated by vice president of news Richard Gingras, Google’s stake in the technology itself claims profit from any advertising revenue generated with its use. It’s the digital equivalent to trademarking property regulations. If a company like Google could profit from each property built in adherence to its set of guidelines, its royalties alone would be enviable. It’s not possible to know Google’s motives beyond a reasonable doubt, and therefore reaching conclusions based on beliefs or opinions proves nothing.

Quantifying Financial Implications

Search engine marketing thrives on a user base that overlaps seamlessly with consumer economics. In February of 2018, Google introduced tools to compare your mobile site speed with its Mobile Speed Scorecard and Impact Calculator, which reveal the financial incentive to faster mobile websites. The Speed Scorecard compares multiple websites’ loading times, empowering companies to gauge their mobile speed relative to competitors. The Impact Calculator offers revenue projection for speed improvement, dynamically displaying numerical values based on each second eliminated from a site’s current speed. As the most recent inventions of Google’s development team, the tools appeal to businesses in their pockets.

For Marketing Services, Call DFW SEO – The Top Dallas SEO Agency – at 800.231.4871