5 Reasons Why You Should Add a Blog to Your Website

5 Reasons Why You Should Add a Blog to Your Website

Having a blog on your website is a powerful way to cost effectively market your business online. Here’s 5 ways that adding a blog to your website can benefit your business:

1. Boost your websites SEO

Search engines love websites that are constantly updated with fresh content and posting regular blog posts is one of the best ways to do this. Also, more content on your website means more pages of yours to be found in the Search engines. See #2 below for the third SEO benefit that you get when your content is shared.

2. Reach more potential customers when your blog posts are shared

You don’t often see product and service pages being shared online, but blog posts with interesting or helpful content do get shared through social media, email and other websites. Having your content shared means two things: More people visiting your website through the shared link, and SEO benefits from these inbound links to your site.

3. Show your credibility and gain more trust

Sharing the valuable knowledge you have in your field through informative, helpful or insightful blog posts shows your customers that you know what you’re talking about and that you can give them the right advice. This extra insight into your knowledge allows you to gain trust and credibility with your customers.

4. Engage with your customers

The comment section at the end of each blog post is a great way to engage with your customers. Whether they have questions about the content you’ve posted, want to learn more about your business, or just want to say “thanks” for the helpful information you’ve provided, this interaction is an excellent way to also build rapport with your customers.

5. Differentiate your business from your competitors

Having a ‘voice’ online through a blog allows you to differentiate your business from your competitors by showing the unique personality and knowledge in your business.

Have you added a blog to your website? Let us know by commenting below and how it has been of benefit?

 

Keyword use and SEO

Keyword use and SEO

Using keywords correctly on a web page and throughout a website is critical when you are trying to improve search engine ranking. It is just one of the many factors needed for successful on page Search Engine Optimisation.

The number of keywords a site targets for organic SEO will depend on the particular business and what type of keywords will bring the site properly targeted, profitable traffic. Finding the right keywords to target takes a great deal of research and analysis, and is a whole other topic in itself.

But what should you do once you have your keywords selected?

Here are five important quick tips:

1. Include the keywords in the page URL

URLs describe a site or page to visitors and search engines. A correctly structured URL which is relevant and contains your keywords is one key to ranking well.

Poor URL:
“http://www.yourwebsite.com.au/?p=123”
“http://www.yourwebsite.com.au/archives/123”

Good URL
https://www.clarkmarketing.com.au/web-services/

https://www.clarkmarketing.com.au/web-services/seo-services/

2. Keyword use in headers

Place your primary keywords in your headers and sub-headers. These areas of content give the keywords a greater weighting and relevance to search engines. Headers are generally in a larger font and are represented by heading tags that look like <h1>, <h2> etc. in the website code. The <h1> tag is the most important to the search engines, and it is used for the main heading on the page. The other tags from <h2> through to <h6> are generally used for subheaders and have less importance.

3. Keyword proximity & density

Where you can, place your primary keyword or keyword phrase as close to the beginning of the first sentence of your text content. The close proximity to the start of the article continues to tell the search engines that your page is relevant to the keyword you are targeting.

Keyword density is the percentage of times a keyword or phrase appears on a web page compared to the total number of words on the page. There is no optimal ‘keyword density’ percentage, however having a really high keyword density will by no means translate into higher rankings. In fact, over-using the keywords (known as keyword stuffing) can cause a penalty.

4. Keywords in body content

Include the keywords in the body content of your text, but don’t use them un-naturally or out of context. Make sure the way your keywords are incorporated is relevant with the rest of your content on the web page.

5. Keywords in image file names and ALT tags

Google and other search engines are basically visually impaired! But there are two ways you can optimise your images to help the search engines understand what they are.

The first is optimising the file names of your images. (See our article on Optimising Website Images for SEO). Your image file names should indicate what the image is and include your keyword. For example driveway-repairs.jpg rather than the non-descriptive names that are generated by the camera like IMG1234.jpg or DSC12778.jpg.

The second way you can optimise your images is through ALT tags that are descriptive, relevant to the image and contain the keywords where applicable. An ALT Tag is a caption that will replace the image when it cannot be viewed by a browser or a Search Engine crawler.

Optimising Website Images for SEO

Optimising Website Images for SEO

A picture or an image might be worth 1,000 words, and can be attractive on a website. They can make the user experience more memorable, but they also need to be read well by Search Engines to be of benefit your website’s Search Engine Rankings and SEO.

Images may seem like a straightforward component of your website, but often many websites don’t perform as well as they should because of a few critical image factors that, if done correctly in the first place can improve the website design and also benefit your SEO results. We’ll briefly look at just three of them:

  • Image File Names
  • Image ALT Tags
  • Image Size and Resolution

For us humans to view an image and register what it is it takes a combination of the human eyes and brain to do so. However for Google and other Search Engines they are basically visually impaired! It is therefore important to ensure your images are correctly formatted and have the correct file names and ALT tags that help Search Engines understand what they are.

Image File Names

Giving pictures an appropriate file name will help Search Engines determine content. In other words, name your image files something that is indicative of what the image is, for example web-design-melbourne.jpg rather than what is generally recorded from the camera e.g. IMG1234.jpg or DSC12778.jpg.

File names are best when they’re short, relevant and descriptive. When renaming images use hyphens, rather than underscores.

Web-Design-MelbourneFile Name: Web-Design-Melbourne.jpg

 

 

 

 

Image ALT Tags

The ALT Tag attribute provides alternative information for an image if a user for some reason cannot view it. This is a caption that will also replace the image when it cannot be viewed by a browser or a Search Engine crawler. As Search Engine crawlers are basically visually impaired, they use the ALT Tag to read an image and work out what it is about.

Therefore it is essential for the ALT Tag to be descriptive and relevant to the image, where it is applicable we highly recommend using a keyword in your ALT tag name.

Below is an example of what Google and other Search Engines read when they come across and image, the ALT tags are shown.

ALT-tags-for-SEO

 

Google recommends you be as descriptive as possible. The following is an example of what Google would deem bad, better, and best alt text for an image:

Bad: alt=”” (just left blank)

Better: alt=”design” (not descriptive enough)

Best: alt=”web-deign-melbourne”

Google also advises against using an alt text by simply over stuffing the Alt Tag loaded with keywords.

Avoid: alt=”web-design, web-design-melbourne, website-design, web-page-design, web-site-design-company, web-site-design-company-melbourne, …..etc ”

Image Size and Resolution

Web images take up the majority of the download time in most website pages. The speed of a website is important to visitors. You need to capture their attention quickly and convince them to look further. If the website page takes a long time to load, a potential customer visitor will be lost. Slow website pages can also cause a website to be downgraded by the Search Engines.

Most digital cameras take photos that are way bigger than the average web page can display; what’s more these images generally have large file sizes. Therefore having a good imaging manipulation program that can optimize images for website use (resize/crop/ adjust/ optimize) is essential to help manipulate images direct from your camera before they are uploaded to your website.

Many aspects make up getting an image “just right” for the web, however these are too numerous to detail in this brief article. One aspect however that is often overlooked to help reduce the file is by adjusting the image resolution to 72dpi.

Again you’ll need to check the image properties in your imaging program and if the image shows a resolution of 200 or 300dpi then use the program to resize the image to 72dpi. To simplify ~ this will help to reduce the file size. For example a 200 x 200 pixels image at 72dpi, 150dpi, or 300dpi will all display exactly the same on the web, however the 72dpi file will be smaller in size and therefore load quicker!

If there’s anything you think we’ve missed that you want to know? Do you have anything to say about optimising images for SEO? Let us know by commenting below.

 

Web Redesign Melbourne & SEO Case Study

Web Redesign Melbourne & SEO Case Study

Client Background Information

CMD Bathroom Renovations and Plumbing Services are a bathroom renovation specialist situated in Melbourne’s Eastern suburbs. They initially engaged another Melbourne web designer to develop and build their website. Unfortunately after 7 months it was not finished to their satisfaction. Visually, content and navigation were poor. The site had no Google presence.

Website Before

website-Redesign

What We Did To Rescue Them:

The first course of action was to gain a full understanding of their business and the type of clientele they wanted to attract by having a website, and their website objectives. It was immediately obvious the original site did not covey the right information, messages and imagery about what they offered, who they were targeting and the level of craftsmanship they produce when completing a bathroom renovation. The website needed a total overhaul!

Clark Marketing & Design had to work with the original website theme. All content and text was revised and implemented after important keyword research and competitor analysis was completed. Headline statements and text now showed what the site offered in less than three seconds. Hero Images showing the quality and craftsmanship of their bathroom renovations were added. Value content was added in the form of a frequently asked questions page, and elsewhere throughout the site. Easy navigation was incorporated and tailored to other key aspects of their business and their desired audience. A strong call to action on every page was paramount and consistent for when a prospective client needed to act. Finally close attention was paid to all Search Engine Optimisation factors.

The number one search that they wanted to aim for was a high ranking for the high volume key search term Bathroom Renovations Melbourne.

Results Website After:

Website-Redesign

Cleaner, content rich, highly search engine optimised website.

In the first month or so after launching the redesigned web site traffic began to increase steadily. For the client the phones began to ring and inquiries via email also increased. Clark Marketing & Design were reengaged to conduct on-going Search Engine Optimisation and web reviews. Within two months website traffic had increased nearly 9 fold with a significant number of hits, leads, quotes and jobs being secure daily.

Late in May 2013, the key search term Bathroom Renovations Melbourne, saw the new website achieve Google Page 1, Number 1 position ranking. Over the next few months a further 8 key search terms achieved Google Page 1, Number 1 position rankings!

Google-Page-1-Number-1

 

 

 

See the website live here

or Google Bathroom Renovations Melbourne

What The Client Said:

“Wow! I just wanted to say that you have turned our business around! In 13 years of being in business, business has never been so good.!!! What you suggested and advised for the website has worked. The phones are running hot and what can I say, you have gone above and beyond what we expected – 8x GOOGLE PAGE 1 RANKINGS for all key search terms and phrases. Thank you so much!”

 

SEO in 2014: Two critical things you should pay attention to.

SEO in 2014: Two critical things you should pay attention to.

2013 was an eventful year in terms of updates from Google. You would have heard of updates with names such as Penguin, Panda, and Hummingbird all affecting how websites rank where websites appear (their position) on Google’s search engine results page.

Also in 2013, if you have been reading your Google Analytics reports you would have noticed the steady increase in Google encrypted data (not provided, not set). The vast majority of keyword and keyword phrases searches, are now no longer shown therefore making our ability to access keyword data for research purposes more difficult than ever before.

These factors alone make Search Engine Optimisation increasingly more challenging in 2014.

So what are two basic things you should be doing to increase your SEO performance results in 2014, and what has Google indicated?

1. Content Marketing in 2014 will be bigger than ever.

From an SEO perspective, Google will be looking closer at websites that have a strong content marketing effort.

Content is basically adding either new visual content, written content or auditory content, such as videos to your website. It includes everything from new articles and information text copy, blog posts, photos, video and more.

Companies that are producing high quality content that’s both engaging and informative on a regular basis, for their target audiences generally tend to perform better in Search Engine Results.

So tip number one is to review your website, and see when you last changed or added to your content. If its been a while, then you need to start considering what you can do that can add value on a regular basis targeted toward your audience.

From a Google perspective it shows signs that your website is alive, well and growing.

If you haven’t started with regular content marketing yet, it’s time to get moving now.

2. The Mobile Responsive Website

Website-Design-LilydaleHave you checked your website on a mobile phone or tablet device recently? Your website’s mobile performance matters to your SEO rankings!

The environment for accessing and viewing websites has changed dramatically in the last few years. Australia has one of the highest smartphone penetrations in the world. In fact Australians have adopted smartphones and tablets into their everyday lives faster than consumers in many other developed countries. Smartphone penetration has exploded to an estimated 84% in 2013, and continues to grow. The statistics for tablet computing devices are similar. The tablet has become the fastest selling computing device in history on a global scale with estimates that by the end of 2013, about 75% of Australians will also own a tablet, this up from just 12% 2010.

So nearly everyone is accessing your website on one type of portable device or another!

If you don’t have a mobile-optimised website, this needs to be on your top priority list in terms of SEO and design investments for 2014! 2014 will be the year of mobile SEO.

Of course there will be many other factors, old and new that will affect your website’s performance this year, but ensuring you develop a high quality content marketing strategy and make sure you website is mobile responsive will be a good start.

 

Website Design and Google Search

Website Design and Google Search

If your contemplating having a website designed, then it is important to gain a basic understanding how your business is found online. That is ,what exactly happens when someone does a search, by typing some keywords on a Search Engine such as Google, hoping to find your business, product or service, or other information?

Google-Search-SEO

When a consumer has made a decision that they are ready to buy, or need a product or service they generally turn to the Internet to look for a supplier. It’s that simple. This is where search, and how well your website is optimised (SEO) is so important from a marketing perspective and for your website performance.

This Google insight should help explain, how a search works click here…..oh and by the way in the 30 seconds you have taken to read this, over 1.2 million searches were performed world-wide!