Since starting as an apprentice, it’s safe to say there has been a lot to learn; through a combination of various training programs and hands-on experience, I’ve discovered different programs, tools, tips and tricks surrounding digital marketing so I have compiled an A-Z list summarising some of the key terms…
Using Google Analytics on your site can provide you with data about your visitors, sales and site performance in order to give you the insights you need to optimise your website accordingly. Using Analytics means you can track data such as bounce rate, time spent on your site and newsletter signups to give you an indication of what’s happening to your business and where you should be going.
Creating and maintaining an updated blog on your site allows you to keep your audience updated and informed on all aspects of your company and industry topics. Ensuring your blog is frequently updated is key – after all, who wants to visit your blog only to find your latest post was written months ago?
Once you manage to drive traffic to your site, the last thing you want is for your content to drive them all away. In order for content to be successful, it should be shareable to create awareness and on a range of platforms to reach a variety of people. It’s often good to include user generated content, such as ratings and discussions, to help customers to make their decision since people tend to put their trust in customers reviews. Good content can lead to a positive impact on SEO so in order to get your content seen, it need’s to be well thought out.
Your domain name is unique to you and is what your customers are typing into the search bar in order to reach your site, so it should be memorable and relevant to your site. Different websites can use different top level domains (such as .co.uk, .fr, .com, etc), which can provide a reference to both the user and to search engines about what country that website is relevant to.
Email marketing is one of the most powerful ways to connect with your customers; being able to send your content, whether it’s a new offer or promoting your services, directly to your mailing list is bound to get your name out there. With the option to create mailing lists – such as those based in a certain region, or those who’ve signed up to your newsletter, you can target your emails to a more relevant audience to improve the likelihood of your content being seen.
With 71% of adults using a Facebook account (as of 2014), having your business on Facebook will allow you to stay connected to your customers and allow customers to search for you. You’ll be able to reach large groups of people with updates and promotions as well as having one-on-one conversations with those that ‘like’ your page.
A goal is a trackable ‘success’ which allows you to measure conversions, for example, when a customer signs up to your newsletter or purchases a product. It can be particularly useful to create goals in order to track users’ time spent on your site and pages views etc so you can evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns.
Ensuring your social media feeds are regularly updated will make people more inclined to follow your account and keep up with your latest posts. Hootsuite allows you to manage all of your social network accounts in one place as well as allowing you to schedule posts for future dates, so you can plan your posts in advance to avoid gaps in your feed during those busy periods.
An impression occurs when your website is displayed in a search result. Impressions don’t necessarily mean clicks, but when someone lays eyes on your website or ad, regardless of whether or not they click through. Impressions are important when you want to increase brand awareness as you’re getting your name and logo displayed in front of large amounts of people.
Ensuring you incorporate keywords in your site content and headings will not only be useful for your audience but will also help improve where you rank in organic search results. However keyword stuffing should be avoided at all costs as it will increase your bounce rate and potentially have you penalized on search engines. Knowing what your customers are searching for using Google Analytics will give you an insight into what it is they’re looking for – are you providing it?
When someone searches for a specific term, the most relevant page of your site should be optimised for this audience, so when they arrive on your site, they should be greeted with the information they asked for. Your ad quality score in Adwords also affected by your landing page experience so it should be relevant and useful, easy for customers to navigate around your site and engaging so customers want to spend time on your site.
Putting time and thought into title tags and meta descriptions can pay off as this is one of the leading factors when a user is deciding who’s site to click on. The keywords from the users search will be highlighted if they are included in your meta data therefore it’s beneficial to include keywords relevant to your page content. Nearly all search engines also take in the relevance of meta title to user query into account when ranking pages.
Creating a network of contacts allows your name to be circulated amongst the online community. Connecting with multiple people; whether they are customers, other companies or just individuals who may benefit from your services, having these contacts means your brand name is out there and people know where to look when searching for the products or services that you offer.
Generating natural traffic means people are finding your website based on the relevance and quality of your content and website as a whole and is often the ultimate goal of many company’s digital marketing efforts. Search engines take into account a wide range of factors to organically rank website, from the uniqueness of content and relevance to the user’s query, to how many other websites link to your domain and how people interact with the website once they land on it.
Pay-per-click advertising allows you to bid for a placement on a search engine or web page and you are charged based upon how many people click through to your site. This form of marketing, when carefully managed, tends to generate a high ROI as your ad is shown to those searching for what you are advertising. Using PPC drives immediate results unlike SEO, which takes much more time.
A query is the exact word or phrase that is entered into a search engine. By reviewing your keywords report on Google Analytics and/or AdWords will give you a good indication of the terms your customers are searching, allowing you to make your content relevant and optimise your keywords to improve the likelihood of ranking higher in web results.
If a webpage is moved or deleted, a 301 redirect will permanently direct the visitor towards the new URL or to the most relevant page. 301 redirects are recommended for SEO purposes as search engines will carry the page’s value, and by consequence often rankings, over to the new page.
Search engine optimisation is the process of optimising your marketing strategy in order to gain higher rankings in organic search engine results. There are a wide range of aspects that influence SEO, from relevant content and good quality links, to the site’s technical optimisation and performance. It is crucial that when building or marketing a website that you are taking into account as many of the key factors as possible, in order to improve the position of your website, and the higher up in the results you are, the more traffic your site is likely to receive.
Twitter is a social network worth investing time into as it allows you to connect with individuals and businesses from all over the world using short, text-based posts. You can keep up to date with the latest from industry professionals, competitors and clients as well keeping your followers up to date with the latest from your business. With the option to add links, send direct messages, tweet images and now even videos, it’s a quick way to get snippets of information across and get your brand name out there. Twitter also offers an ad platform through which you can easily target people and demographics.
As a web based company, keeping your content up to date shows that you’re staying on top of the latest updates and trends. Search engines tend to favour websites that have fresh content on, as often it is far more relevant, insightful and better designed than similar content that was made years ago.
The internet has evolved to be far more interactive than it was fifeteen years ago. No longer are discussions constricted to message boards, but are continually perpetuated on a diverse range of social networks and in the discussions sections on many websites. This has given birth to viral marketing – the concept of the spread of information naturally by people through these channels. Often benefitting humourous or sensationalist content, viral marketing can help engaging promotions easily spread on a small budget.
WordPress can be used as a blogging, or as a full content management system to create websites upon, with a range of customisable themes and features. With it’s free and open source nature, as well as the wide range of possibilities that can be achieved through plugins and customised development, it has swiftly become the de facto standard for website back ends.
An XML sitemap is a file that generally lists all the URLs on your website, alongside key information on them such as when individual pages were last updated. This means that search engines can easily crawl your site, as well as discover new pages and updates a lot quicker. Although not compulsory, a sitemap is highly recommended in ensuring your site is indexed properly, especially if you have a lot of pages.
Although creating quality video content may be time consuming, videos are a great way to get large amounts of information across whilst engaging customers. Videos could include product demonstrations, ‘how to’ videos, client testimonials etc to give customers a visual insight into your business.
Google’s yearly review was originally christened Google Zeitgeist. Although in 2014 it has now become referred to as ‘Year in Search’, it still offers a powerful insight into search engine trends, popular news and how information is flowing through the internet. Why not check our 2014 in Search now?