What is Google Crawl and Indexing (Nofollow) Update? Will this Update Affect my Page Ranking?

Recently, Google announced a new update that Nofollow links will be seen as hints rather than directives as of March 1, 2020.

 

The way Google crawls and indexes web pages has evolved a lot with time; however, this is the first time when it is going to treat “no follow” links differently. The Nofollow link attribute has been an integral part of the SEO industry for around 15 years to fight the comment spam and flag advertising-related and sponsor links. Now, it is going to evolve for the better.

To ensure that you are doing things the right way and following what Google prefers can be the potion to stay unaffected or improve your link building, backlinking, and ranking strategies.

But, before we move on to Google Crawl and Index Update March 1, 2020, let’s take a glimpse of what exactly a nofollow link is.

What is a Nofollow Link?

A link with the attribute rel = “nofollow” is known as nofollow link. The main purpose of using this HTML tag is to inform search engines to ignore that link.

These links do not pass PageRank and as such, they don’t impact the search engine rankings.

However, with the forthcoming “nofollow” update for Google crawling and indexing, the way Google treats nofollow links is going to change forever.

What is [March 1, 2020] Google Crawl and Indexing “Nofollow” Update?

Google announced that-

“For crawling and indexing purposes, nofollow will become a hint as of March 1, 2020”.

Danny Sullivan, an American Technologist, journalist, and co-founder of Search Engine Land also tweeted about this new update and shared his views through a post.

image001

Recap

In 2019, Google announced a two-part update related to the handling and treatment of nofollows.

While the first part that affects the search engine ranking is already in effect and playing its role, the second part is going to be rolled out soon.

According to the announcement made by Google, the nofollow links would be treated the same way until March 1, 2020. Since the date is approaching, the hype of this update is getting intense and gaining huge momentum right now.

This new update will not only influence the digital marketing trends but also make a substantial impact on how Googlebot will treat “nofollow links” for crawling and indexing.

So, It’s Time to Revisit Your Nofollow Policy

As aforementioned, the nofollow link attribute was introduced 15 years ago as a way to fight the comment spam. Thereafter, it also became the ‘recommended method’ for flagging advertisement-related and sponsored links.

On the contrary, many SEO professionals and site owners started to depend solely on the nofollow attribute to block a web page from being crawled and indexed – which was never recommended to practice.

Though this practice hasn’t affected them throughout these years, these people need to now shift to more robust mechanisms, such as the Meta robots noindex direction.

Two Additional New Attributes Introduced by Google along with the Update

Google has announced two new attribute values that will help webmasters to identify the nature of particular links as an additional way to Google Search.

These attributes, along with nofollow, are summarized below:

rel = “sponsored”  

The sponsored attribute value will help identify the links on your website that were created for advertisements, sponsorships, or other compensation agreements.

rel = “ugc”

The ugc attribute value is introduced for links that are used within “user-generated content”, for instance, forum posts and comments.

rel = “nofollow”

Now, use this attribute in cases where you want to link to a page but don’t want to involve any kind of endorsement, for example, passing along ranking credit to another page.

For all these years, Google did not count any link marked with nofollow to use within Google’s search algorithms.

But, this has changed now.

Rather than using as directives, all of the above link attributes will be treated as “hints” about –which links to consider and which links to exclude for crawling and indexing. 

In a post shared by Danny Sullivan and Gary, they quoted:

“We’ll use these hints — along with other signals — as a way to better understand how to appropriately analyze and use links within our systems.”

Should I change the Existing Nofollow Links?

There is no need to make any change in your existing nofollows. If you are using nofollow to block your sponsored links or to indicate that you don’t vouch for a page you are linking to, it will still be supported.

Besides, you can also continue to use nofollow for flagging ads or sponsored links to avoid possible link related penalties. However, it is recommended to switch over to sponsored and ugc attributes, if and when it seems appropriate.

In case you are thinking that you don’t need to flag ad or sponsored links, remember that you still need to flag such links by using either nofollow (acceptable) or sponsored (preferred) attribute.

Can I use Multiple Link Attributes in the same link tag?

Of course, Yes. You are allowed to use one or more attributes in the same link tag. For instance, when the link comes from user-generated content and is also sponsored, you can use rel = “ugc sponsored”.

What to expect if I use the Wrong Attribute Value in the link?

Nothing major! To be honest, there is no wrong attribute except in the case of sponsored links. When you flag a UGC or non-ad link as sponsored, it would be seen as a hint. However, this link then might not be counted as a credit to another page.

Should I bother to use ‘sponsored’ or ‘ugc’ attribute?

Using sponsored and ugc attributes will help Googlebot or spider to better process links for web analysis. This might also be your content in case other people who link to you use these attributes.

These attributes will add a bit more context and describe the content they are pointed at. It will help Google to better understand unnatural linking patterns and avoid losing important information while allowing site owners to indicate that some links should not be given the importance of a first-party endorsement.

Will nofollow update have any impact on page rankings?

Right now, it is not clear how this update will impact rankings. It depends on Google what factors it prefers to crawl, index, and rank web pages. There is a possibility that it might devise new rules to determine which page to index and which page to not index. Certainly, it won’t choose to index low-quality pages.

Key Points for Takeaway

As the time comes for nofollow attribute to evolve, SEO professionals and site owners should be aware of the March 1, 2020 nofollow update of Google crawl and indexing and what attributes they should prefer for marking links.

1. Change Perception to the Use of Nofollow

While using nofollow, you need to change your perception of “Google won’t consider this page for indexing” to “Google may or may not consider this page for crawling and indexing”.

If Google comes to a point of view that this page is actually useful, the chances are that this page will be indexed by Google.

2. Use Robust Mechanisms for Blocking Purposes

From now onwards, when you want to block Google from crawling and indexing, it is better to use the robust mechanism of Meta robots noindex rather than using nofollow.

3. Prefer to switch to ‘sponsored’ for ads or sponsored links

Start using relevant attributes – nofollow, sponsored, and ugc, accordingly for better processing of links and create a clear distinction line between different links. Google recommends preferring ‘sponsored’ attribute for ads and sponsored links; however, ‘nofollow’ is also acceptable in this case.

Stay in tune with Google’s latest updates to ensure that your SEO strategies for ranking don’t become obsolete as this is the only way to be relevant in the SEO industry.

 

8 Content Marketing Skills to be a Marketing Pro in the age of Voice Search and AI

Content marketing is more than a savior in a world where people despise advertisements. According to a recent report shared by AdBlock Plus and Global Web Index, around 40% of surveyed people affirmed that they used an ad blocker on their desktops and laptops in the past month. Plus, 22% were using ad blockers on their mobile devices.

Another survey by PageFair revealed that mobile ad blocking is exponentially increasing in Asia and projected to increase in North America and Europe as well.

It clearly shows that you are missing out on a huge number of people even with paid advertisements. The good news is that you can reach these people via excellent content marketing strategies.

This is not all. You might have imagined AI automation through high-end movies like Terminator and Star Wars; however, the truth is that AI-powered tools are already commercially available in the real world and helping marketers to get far ahead of the competition. In fact, according to The Content Advantage by Colleen Jones, more than 80% of CEOs think of AI as an extremely important tool.

Before you go into the relaxation mode, think about the increasing importance of voice search and its impact on content creation and marketing.

As all these technological trends are sneaking into our daily lives and going to be present in the future as well, it is getting immensely vital for bloggers, SEOs, marketers, and other relevant professionals to develop great content marketing skills to fly ahead of their rivals and competitors.

Let’s dive deep into the top 8 content marketing skills that you must master to achieve desired results.

1. Research and Digging Deep – to find out useful information about the audience

Unless you don’t know who you are speaking to or sharing your content with, even the most compelling content will fail to make the desired impact. When you know your audience more closely and know about their behaviour patterns, it becomes easier to produce content that they would love to read or have an appetite to dig in.

Tips on How to Conduct Research on Your Audience

  • Use Google Analytics – It is a free tool for analysis with which you can find out who is your audience and get more in-depth demographic information about the visitors of your website.

google analytics

  • Visit Quora and Reddit – Know what people are talking about, what they think, and what fears, desires, dreams, or problems they have. Getting familiar with people of your niche is important to know what kind of content you should produce and market.

Quora and Reddit

  • Use tools like BuzzSumo – Know how people are reacting or responding to your content. With such tools, you can identify what kind of content engaged them most and what made your content appealing to the audience.

Buzz Sumo

  • Offer surveys with incentives – If you are conducting a survey, it is best to incentivize your audience by free downloads, a mini e-book, or a cheat sheet.

Offer surveys

  • Use comment section aptly – When you post content, ask questions, or their opinions. Carefully analyze what they are saying and respond directly and appropriately.

Use comment

2. Subject Matter Expert (SME) Interviewing – to produce authentic content

Make one thing sure. Whenever you decide to write about a topic, you need to be an expert on that topic. It’s because E-A-T is one of the critical factors that Google algorithms use to rank content. If your content does not demonstrate expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness, the chances of getting it noticed by your audience will reduce significantly.

Just take a look at what Search Quality Evaluator guidelines say:

EAT

Thus, interview SMEs to gain deeper insights and find out answers that are not commonly available on the Internet.

However, conducting an interview requires a lot of preparation. Before interviewing an expert, prepare a list of questions that address your audience’s pain points, issues, curiosity, and provide your audience with new information or revelations that are useful for them. Wondering how to make your interview more valuable? Take a look at the tips given below.

Tips to Conduct a Value-Rich Interview

A. Prepare yourself – Before calling an expert, enlist questions that you couldn’t find online and do as much research on the topic as you can.

B. Break the ice with open-ended questions – Ask questions that would make SME discuss the topic openly. Don’t hesitate to ask unusual questions and bring out more insights and new information. For instance, ask “How do you handle the challenges of your profession?” rather than “Do you find it difficult to continue this profession?”

C. Keep your content outline with you – To avoid wasting time on irrelevant questions, it’s better to base your questions on the content outline. For instance, if you are talking to an SEO expert about content marketing, it is best to skip questions related to the website enhancement.

D. Record the interview – To go back to a specific sentence said by the interviewee, having a recorded conversation will keep you from distracting and confusing with other things.

E. Ask for clarification – If you are not getting some answer properly or finding it hard to grasp, you can ask the SME to clarify more. This way, you can dive deeper into the topic.

Interviewing Subject Matter Experts is a great way to build your knowledge base about a particular topic and explore things that you and your audience want to know.

3. Setting Goal before Writing Content

When you decide to write content about a topic, first of all, set a goal. Just writing anything about any topic won’t do much good to your website. Plus, you won’t be able to attract the audience of your niche. Setting a goal is not all about selling your products or services. You can have other kinds of goals as well.

For instance, you can write content to divert the traffic to different blogs on your website or you can write content to help solve the problems of your audience that fall under the same or similar category of your business or targeted stream.

4. Finding Ways How to Outsmart Your Competitors

One of the goals of content creation is to attract your audience to read your content rather than that of your competitors. How can it be achieved? Let’s check it out.

Tips on Creating Content That You Can’t Find Online

A. Analyze your competitor’s content – Spy on what information your competitor is providing and what’s missing from their content.

B. Use a different yet compelling way of presenting content – Since you and your competitor’s niche is the same, there is a higher possibility that content can be similar and saying the same thing. But, if you present the information differently and in a more compelling way, it would give the illusion of something new.

C. Groom your writing style – So many people become the regular visitor of a blog or journal just because of the writing style. So, develop a style that your audience finds the most appealing.

5. Intensive Keywords Research

Keywords make the base of your content and allow you to stick to the main topic. We often encounter many blogs or articles these days that discuss a different topic with the targeted keyword stuffed in it. Though it may help in ranking or increasing the number of clicks, it will also lead to a higher bounce rate. Why? The reader won’t stay on the page for long when he/she won’t find anything useful. Readers are likely to be frustrated by such headings and blogs that are not coherent with the keyword. Apart from a lower retention rate and higher bounce rate, the reputation of the blogger or article author will also go down.

Thus, stay relevant to the targeted keywords. Now, you might be wondering – how to find keywords that are in trend? Let’s have a look.

Tips on How to Find Trendy and Relevant Keywords

A. Go for Keyword Planners – You can use free keyword planner tools to find out which related keywords are in trend these days.

B. Also use long-tail keywords – Since voice search is making it easy to browse for people by spelling out long sentences or keywords, choosing long-tail keywords will also help you target the audience that performs voice search rather than textual search. For instance, rather than using “wedding gift ideas”, you can use “Suggest me top wedding gifts ideas for the groom”.

C. Include low-competition keywords – Going for common or highly-competitive keywords will put you in competition with big players in the market. So, to avoid getting lost in the competition against huge brands, choose keywords with a score below 50.

D. Don’t hesitate to select keywords with low-search volume – You can use a keyword as long as people are searching for that particular keyword. Remember that millions and even billions of people surf the internet nowadays. If your keyword is targeting even a small fraction of people, it still makes up a large number of people reaching out to your content.

6. Optimizing Content for Voice Search and AI

Indisputably, voice search and AI are going to be the major trends in the upcoming days. To be honest, voice search is already making a significant impact on search results. If you are not optimizing your content for voice search, there are chances that you are already missing out on several opportunities and Google’s search engine attention. Thus, it’s better to be ready for what is going to be ubiquitous in the future.

Now, the question pops out – how to optimize the content for voice search?

Tips on How to Optimize Content for Voice Search

A. Write complete questions instead of small phrases

According to Google, 41% of people talk to their voice assistants like a friend. Consequently, they ask the whole question rather than just saying a few words.

Image Source – Think with Google

 

So, rather than using “best restaurants near me”, you should prefer to use “which are the top five best restaurants near me?” or “when do the best restaurants near me offer discounts or deals of the day?

B.  Structure your content so that it can be used by voice assistants

When people perform voice searches through their smart speakers or voice assistants, they don’t need to click on the link to get the answers. Google will do the task of finding answers through its voice assistant. Now, the thing is that the answer may also come from your website, only if your content is well structured. To increase the likeliness, categorize your content into H2s and H3s and use targeted keywords in them. If possible, also make numbered and bulleted lists.

7. Building Authority and Credibility via Relevant LinksUsing relevant and valid links are essential to show that you are not just putting out random words in the air. Authentic links show that what you are saying has a solid base and can be considered trustworthy.

Besides, there are several other benefits of using links in your content, for instance helping Google understand what your site or blog is about by linking it with higher authority sites of the same niche and allowing other influencers to link to you if you are producing great content.

8. Assessing the Success Metrics of Your Content

It is important to know how to assess your content success to make needed improvements and advancements in your content. After all, seeking feedback and performance rate is what makes us better.

3 Strong Indicators of Your Content Success

A. Bounce Rate

If people are not finding your content interesting, they won’t spend enough time and also won’t go through other pages of your website. If your bounce rate is higher than 70%, you need to make serious changes in your writing style and improve your content.

Image Source: CXL.com

 

B. Scroll Depth

Find out if people are scrolling to the bottom of your page. If most people are just reading the introduction and then leaving the page immediately, it means you need to make a strong start and introduce more appealing headings ahead to make them continue further.

Image Source: Blastanalytics.com

 

C. Click-Through Rate

Check out which series of content is getting a higher click-through rate and then analyze how it was different from others.

Image Source: MOZ.com

 

On a Final Note

Content marketing has become an indispensable part of marketing strategies to reach out to the audience that is often missed through other media. So, focus on what your audience wants to know, present reliable information from authentic sources in a unique way, incorporate features that make your content noticed by Google, and stay updated on how your content is performing in the market.

If you start cultivating the right content marketing skills, you will be able to withstand the stiff competition spurred by the emerging technologies (like voice search, AI automation, and machine learning) that are deemed to rule not only the marketing industry but also the daily lives of future generations.

According to SEO 2020 updates: You shouldn’t be doing these 10 mistakes if you are into an online business

SEO is the backbone of digital marketing that not only snuggles the site’s ranking but also helps to generate potential traffic on the web. When an online business is launched, developers wish to focus on the website’s name and URLs, page content, page outlook, the accuracy of page, Meta tags, usability and accessibility of a website. If all this is properly implemented, nobody can stop your site from coming on top of the ranking list.

According to online market trends, online business becomes relevant and successful only when they fulfil the SEO requirements. Fortunately, technology has empowered digital marketing with effective marketing strategies that help in reaching more and more customers. Traffic and ranking are two chief principles that business owners targets all the time and web developers clearly know the fact that a website loaded with original content and interesting features is all that one needs.

Just like every year, 2020 is also a year of new algorithms that are created with the aim of providing a better user-interface. It looks like major SEO 2020 updates are going to influence the online performance in a major way. This time Google is putting more emphasis on the factors required to strengthen the site’s rankings. The updates talk about the mistakes that usually developers do and then suffer from the consequences of poor ranking. Optimizing a site by avoiding the following mistakes will bring the desired results and will create a high probability of more conversion leads.

1. Poor internal links – When it comes to website building, internal links play an important role that shouldn’t be ignored in any way. The content that is uploaded on the site should have links so that Google can find your page and posts for the users searching them on the search engine query. Using the right internal linking strategy, Google will better understand the structure of your site and the relationship between the pages.

Internal linking

2. Content duplicity – Content is the backbone of SEO and digital marketing. While creating website developers make the mistake of using plagiarized content that makes the information redundant on the web and in this way the site’s ranking gets low. Users tend to look into the services of other competitors when they see the same information being circulated in different sites. So, avoid using similar content and duplicate URL’s, otherwise, your online business will not be able to withstand in the global competition.

Content duplicity

3. Inappropriate use of analytical tools – Analytical tools such as Keyword Planner, SEO web page analyzer, Search Console, etc in search engine optimization are used to analyze the structure of the content, its loading speed, and a number of people visited your site. Using the support of SEO analytical tool will help to measure the conversions and then comparing them with each other. By doing so, users will be able to optimize the whole site with better traffic and high ranking.

analytical tools

4. No image tags – Adding extra features to a site can uplift the presentation of a site and also attracts more traffic towards a web. But Google can’t find images until they are linked with image tags. Using image tags you will optimize your images by search engines for better rankings. To fetch better results it is very important not to fill alt tags with keywords, therefore, one should use real descriptions instead of inappropriate keywords.

Image Source: Kinsta

5. Not updating with SEO techniques – Every year Google keeps on updating its algorithms for better user interface and good site performance. Therefore, it is very important to remain updated with the changes made in SEO strategies and their techniques. But there are some people who still use stuffed keywords, PBNs, and other traditional methods that no more attract the users. Following the old and traditional SEO techniques, you might penalized by Google. The new update called Google BERT helps Google to understand the content structure in a better way. If you want to be a successful part of SEO it is very important for you to follow modern SEO techniques.

SEO techniques

6. No conversion optimization – At the end of the day, every business owner running an online business wishes to have more conversion leads that can create profit earning opportunities in the future. However, some people really don’t focus on conversion optimization and then they fail to flourish their business and in this way, they also start losing their audience along with revenue-generating opportunities. Being a part of 2020, one should not avoid this strategy that not only generates revenue but also helps in enlarging the circle of potential users.

conversion optimization

7. Zero focus on branding and brand searches – With the 2020 update, SEO seems to be more focused on the branding and the searches of an online business. Now the goal of an SEO expert is not just confined with getting more human traffic but also building a brand. If you want more customers generating trust upon your site and looking for your services it is very important that you increase your brand searches. By doing so, more people will be able to find you on top of the search list; therefore, it would be a great blunder if anyone ignores this strategy to grow their online business.

brand searches

8. No mobile responsiveness – Nowadays, people are looking for sites that can run and operated in mobile devices also. Around 50% of traffic derives from mobile devices and if your site fails to satisfy the users with this facility then Google will mark your site unfriendly on the web which is going to hamper the ranking and the mass of the audience. So if you are into an online business then it is highly recommended not to ignore the 2020 SEO updates of creating mobile-friendly websites.

mobile responsiveness

9. Do not target search engines – While writing content on web make sure that you are not targeting the search engines but the audience for whom you are writing. The success of an online business depends on how users are considering your services and not the search engine. The role of a search engine is to rank a particular site that is based on user evaluation. If more users are happy with your content or the information you are serving on the internet the chances are more that Google will promote your site on the search engine query with high ranking and that is why it is important for you to satisfy your customers rather than search engines.

search engines

10. Avoiding the support of paid media – According to 2020 SEO updates, ignoring the support of paid media can affect a site’s ranking on a web. In the digital world, paid media helps in generating leads and creating more opportunities for their conversion by promoting the content over various social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Therefore, it is a great way to generate more earned media and potential customers who can directly look into your products and services

paid media

It doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or an experienced person in operating an online business, support of SEO is very essential that not only focuses on human traffic but also helps a site with high ranking and visibility in the search engine. By avoiding the following above mentioned 10 SEO mistakes anyone can accomplish their business goals and objectives with high productivity and growth.

2020 SEO Basics Guide: What Today’s SEOs must be Well-Aware of?

The SEO strategies you have used a decade or five years ago are no longer that much effective in today’s time as they used to be before. The landscape of the SEO field has altered and evolved dramatically. Google is getting smarter and more intelligent with time and if you want to succeed in your goals, you need to extend the horizons of your knowledge base.

In 2020, the complexities that come with SEO have increased like never before. Now, it is not just about building links and creating content with targeted keywords. In today’s time, you also need to track:

  • Emerging trends (e.g. E-A-T, YMYL, and voice search)
  • Changes and updates in algorithms
  • Advancements (e.g. machine learning and artificial intelligence)
  • Evolving audience behavior and needs

That’s why it’s high time to brush up your concepts, skills, and knowledge to stay abreast of what’s going on in the SEO industry in 2020.

Key SEO Basics and Fundamentals [Essence of SEO]

What are the four basic components that form the basis of SEO strategies and most SEO professionals use in everyday life?

Though the answer varies on the Internet, you won’t disagree with these four concepts:

  • Keywords and Keyword Targeting
  • Keyword Search Volume
  • Organic Traffic
  • Conversions from Targeted Keywords

Most SEO strategies and concepts revolve around these four components whether it is on-page optimization; link building, content, or technical SEO. 

Consequently, the first most important thing you should know is –How to pin down these key SEO components sagaciously while running a newly launched or existing campaign?

Therefore, we have come up with a detailed 2020 SEO guide for Beginners to provide clarity of the basics and fundamentals of search engine optimization.

Keywords (and their Types), Entities, and Concepts

Keyword has always been the nitty-gritty of SEO. In fact, in the fledgling stage of SEO, keywords and keyword targeting were all the professionals had. The entire focus was on the creation of page content with targeted keywords and optimizing them to rank the page.

What’s different now? 

Nowadays, you not only have to consider targeted keywords but also synonyms and related keywords.

At present, you are not restricted to use high-performing terms. In order to improve rankings, there are different kinds of keywords that can be used based on your goals and approach for SEO.

Now, you also have:

  • Money Keywords – drive the right potential customers who actually generate business for clients
  • Head Keywords – generate high search volumes and are very competitive.
  • Short Tail keywords – have a short length, of possibly one or two words (less specific in nature)
  • Long-Tail Keywords – are more specific and lengthy than commonly searched keywords
  • Supporting Keywords – are all other keywords you are targeting (also called secondary keywords)
  • Branded Keywords – include the brand name or its variation
  • Phrase Match Keywords – whereby a search engine matches your ad against exact keywords that include the phrase
  • Broad Match Keywords – allow displaying your ad when someone searches for that keyword, its variation, or even related topics
  • Exact Match Keywords – allow you to reach customers searching only for a specific keyword or its close variants
  • Negative Keywords – prevent your ad from displaying for particular keyword phrases

And so on. If you are thinking about LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords, then don’t. It’s a total waste of time.

Having an in-depth knowledge of keywords is quintessential and it is, of course, the first requirement for the SEO profession.

Another important thing to note here is that the trend has recently shifted from keywords to topics and entities. 

While keywords are specific words or phrases, topics can be considered as wider terms and concepts. On the other hand, entities can be anything that is unique, well-defined, and distinguishable, including people, things, places, companies, and so on.

Even though the industry is witnessing a shifting trend, the importance of keywords can never be diminished. Meanwhile, this is also true that you can’t ignore entities and topics for optimization in the present time. 

So, go along with all these three building blocks of SEO.

Why Topics Matter in SEO? 

In previous times, targeting a single targeted keyword with one page was a traditional SEO practice. But, now topics have taken a plunge in the SEO industry.

There are even topic researching tools online such as AnswerThePublic.com.

SEMrush has its own tool for topic research as shown below.

Image Source: SEMrush.com

With the help of such tools, you can discover the topics that you should work on for the type of website project. This is amazing and super easy for anyone.

Since the trend is in favor of topics, it would be wise that you don’t lag in the race. Besides these building blocks, there are other basic components, for instance, content, links, and technical SEO that hugely impact the success of your page/website.

So, let’s move forward with these basics that you must learn well.

Content – High Quality, Informative, Optimized

If your content is not of high enough quality, you may be at constant war with Google’s algorithm that gets updated (and smarter) everyday.

In general, if you want your/your client’s website to perform well and rank higher, focus on creating high-quality content with a perfect balance of information, readers’ interaction, and keyword usage. 

The trick here is that the quality depends on various attributes of a marketing campaign, for instance:

  • The core industry
  • The previous work on your website
  • The current work on your website
  • Your competition within the industry
  • Google’s algorithm

You need to understand that there are variations based on the industry in SEO. Therefore, when it comes to using SEO approach, you need to go beyond one strategy.

The industry norms vary and you can find about them with a competitor gap analysis.

A competitor gap analysis will assist you in finding out how you can improve rankings and get them higher than your competitors.

Besides, it also helps in getting other valuable insights, such as:

  • Ranking of your competitors
  • Features like frequency and word counts of your competitors’ content
  • Linked profiles of your competitors
  • On-page SEO and technical SEO (though at a lesser extent)

SEO is complex!! A Simple Correlation / Causation Paradigm doesn’t work here.

Many people think that if they perform certain actions or steps, they will surely see some improvement. To be honest, this is not the case in SEO. You can never be sure of what factor will work for you. Making slight changes to some keywords on a page or links won’t necessarily give you desired results.

Similarly, if you are getting results, you cannot easily point out the contributors that produce that result.

To find out what caused the results, you have to go through detailed organic traffic data analysis and interpretation.

The way Google algorithm works is far more complex and on top of that, Google introduces changes to their algorithm daily. The updates they announced or information they release about their algorithm seem drastic, especially if you are indulged in spammy practices. 

So, you never know what exactly is going to work. However, you may have a general view or narrow down factors about what may work.

Now, let’s go further and discuss overlooked yet important topics – White Hat SEO, Black Hat SEO, and Grey Hat SEO.

White HAT SEO vs. Black Hat SEO vs. Grey Hat SEO – Which one is better for me?

In the SEO world, there are different philosophies. Thus, having an idea of which category you belong to is a wise thing.

White HAT SEOs – These are the ones who work according to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and believe in using strategies that are sustainable. They are transparent in their actions and don’t want to be a target of Google’s penalties. In fact, they are counted as the most ethical SEOs who facilitate their clients with everything they do – details, links, and posts (and whatever they should include) in a detailed report.

Black Hat SEOs – As far as black hat SEOs are concerned, they are fearless and like to implement the latest and greatest techniques and approaches, regardless of how far they are diverging from Google’s guidelines. They are tech-savvy especially when it comes to perpetual churn-and-burn machine, however, obtain only short-term results rather than long-term. They are the ones who build links en-masse to get #1 ranking until Google spots them.

Grey Hat SEOs – This category encompasses SEOs who use black hat techniques just for research but don’t implement them. For implementation, they adopt white hat techniques to generate sustainable results.

In short, if you want to be in the goodwill of Google, it’s better to stick with white or grey hat SEO techniques.

Never Ignore Industry Research, Especially When You Are Not Familiar with Client’s Domain 

The steps for gathering industry information are:

  • To reach out to your client
  • Ask industry-specific questions that you should know while doing SEO
  • Find out SEO elements your competition is leveraging for SERP performance
  • Do a competitor gap analysis
  • Define industry benchmarks
  • Do site analysis
  • Find out what has been done to the site previously and is being done to the site now

All of this information can be very helpful and insightful to run your SEO campaign.

Analysis of Competition’s Link Profiles Can Help You Improve Site 

Doing an analysis of your own links and your competitors’ links becomes necessary when things get tricky and you couldn’t find what can improve your site. Though it is not essential that you will find out the correlation for sure, you can narrow down the list of causes responsible for improvement.

No matter what techniques or approaches you are implementing, you should always keep in mind that correlation is not causation in SEO. So, remember that just because you did some changes or add something, it may or may not result in improvement.

On-page SEO and Technical SEO are crucial too!!! 

On-page optimization

When it comes to on-page optimization, you should be aware of the following factors:

  • Delivering unique value
  • Excellent user experience (UX)
  • Laser targeted keyword targeting (i.e. the keywords that precisely target market issues & strategies)
  • Easily shareable through social networks
  • Easily transferable between devices
  • Making site crawlable / bot accessible
  • Optimization in terms of authorship, metadata, schema, and rich snippets

Technical SEO

It mainly concerns crawling and indexing of the website. This is the part where you can increase the odds in your favor. We highly recommend you to optimize your website for crawlers.

In technical SEO, there is nothing to do with content or link building. It is purely technical.

In 2020, you need to learn and implement certain things in technical SEO, including:

  • All concepts that involve robots.txt
  • Optimization of the site’s navigation and architecture
  • Optimization of URL structure
  • Schema.org Structured Data
  • URL canonicalization
  • Server analysis for locating bottlenecks affecting SERP performance
  • Mobile-friendliness
  • Page speed metrics
  • Code optimization (including W3C concepts such as validation and accessibility)
  • Internal links
  • Link profile analysis for identifying penalties or algorithmic adjustments
  • Pagination like next/prev
  • Implementing international multilingual concepts
  • AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) formats
  • Cross-platform compatibility
  • Cross-browser compatibility
  • SSL implementation for security
  • Error page analysis and rectification (like 4xx, 5xx, etc.)

Search Intent and Precise Target Query

Ignoring user intent while doing optimization is a big mistake!! If you want your optimization to be successful, it is critical that you target keywords that fulfill user intent. Though this concept is in existence for a decade, it still hasn’t lost its importance.

Apart from this, you must learn about:

  • Page speed optimization (image file size, title text, alt text, image file name)
  • Page URL optimization
  • Target keywords optimization
  • Providing content that matches the intelligence level of the target audience
  • Internal link optimization during creation of content page
  • Strategic placement of images throughout the content

E-A-T –A Turning Point and a Big Deal for SEO Profession!!!

Commonly known as the medic update, the concept of Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness is a game-changer in the SEO industry.

Nobody can escape from this concept as it is implemented in Google’s core algorithm in 2018. For an idea of how much businesses lose within 7 days of its introduction, take a look at the table given below.

Image Source: Torquemag.io

 

Researchers later uncovered that it mainly affects:

  • YMYL sites
  • Health sites
  • Business
  • Finance
  • Travel
  • Technology
  • Ecommerce
  • Entertainment
  • Coupon / Deal sites
  • Adult Sites

For precise figures, here is a pie-chart:

Image Source: Search Engine Roundtable (by Barry Schwartz)

 

Creating authority and trust in a website does not solely depend on SEOs, it’s a long-term project.

One way to build authority and trust is to provide comprehensive answers to the user’s query and mind-mapping your content. 

Understand the possible pain points, needs, and desires of your users while answering queries.

If you are going to build a website in 2020, ensure that it is SEO friendly because long-term sustainable SEO will be there for good.

If you do blogging, ensure that you include important questions in a well-organized manner that are easily discoverable and can be promoted on the industry and market scale. 

Finally,

Stick to your SEO routine because wonders won’t happen overnight in the SEO world 

Though there are a few examples of achieving amazing results overnight, it is not always the case. In fact, it happens once in a blue moon. So, it would be foolish if you quit SEO after a month and expect better results for a long-time.

You need to adopt a multi-faceted approach in order to create a solid foundation to cover several SEO issues simultaneously and be consistent and organized in what you do. 

How Google January 2020 Core Update is Different from Other Updates?

Google has entered in 2020 with an update which is named as ‘January 2020 core update.’ Every year Google keeps on updating its algorithms and strategies for better user experience and this can be seen in the recent update.

There was a great talk about the latest Google update released on 13th January that has globally affected the online search results. It is believed that the update might result in certain gains or losses to the online visibility and organic traffic on a site. The update was done with the true intent of providing users with authentic content to their search query on a search engine and standardizing the ratings on the basis of the same content quality.

Content is a crucial part of web development that can’t be ignored in any way and that is why the new update is primarily focusing on the content quality.

Here are some questions that are interlinked with content quality 

  • Does the content provide useful information to the users or not?
  • Is the content is free from grammatical errors?
  • Is the headline of the content is fully descriptive or not?
  • Does the content provide statistical information for supporting argument?
  • Does the content reflect the trustworthiness of the publishers and other experts?

The most recent updates were made in September 2019 that focused on providing appropriate and authoritative content to its users followed with a new update rolled out in January that focuses on evaluating the ranking signals for better search experience.

What Google guidance says about the 2020 update?

Every year Google comes up with certain guidelines that deal with the core algorithms updates. Similarly, after the recent January 2020 update, Google has mentioned certain guidance on the new updates that are mentioned below. Violating the guidelines will affect the entire system and the traffic expected on a particular web.

  • It is believed that the recent update is done in the broad sense that is not specifically targeted and can bring certain gains or losses in the search rankings of a site.
  • It says, that the pages won’t be charged if their rankings get drop but they are being considered against the other content for better search quality.
  • The January 2020 update focuses on locating the quality content on the top recommendations so that users can easily target the desired and appropriate content without wasting a lot of time on the web.

Recent updates and its features

The following are the recent updates that were made to improve the search ranking with the quality content.

Google January 2020 Core Update

  • The update was officially rolled out on 13th January 2020 which has not implemented at every Google data center.
  • It came with the intention of improving the search quality by giving users better search results on the web. Due to this, changes in search visibility can be experienced which might bring certain losses or gains.
  • The success of a site’s ranking is based on the foundation of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness and that is why the update entirely focuses on the content quality.
  • After certain days of its arrival, many webmasters have experienced changes in the ranking positions of their sites.
  • The update has resulted in the improvement of search queries seen in the search engines.
  • The latest Google update is not responsible to fix the earlier sites that were damaged previously because of their content management system.
  • Through this update, search raters gain no control over how pages rank.

Google Update November 2019

  • Webmasters and web developers on 7th November 2019 experienced the massive changes made in the search engine rankings. The sites of small and medium-size affected mainly in the USA.
  • The affected sites belong to certain industries such as food, travel, and health.
  • The algorithm took place to connect words with concepts to handle the spam in the search results and this method was given the name ‘AI’ based on neutral matching.

Google Update September 2019

  • The update appeared on 24th September 2019 that focused on improving the evaluation of content and its quality.
  • The new algorithms brought a change in how Google ranked a site and also brought certain changes in certain sectors such as travel, health, and money but didn’t violate a specific category. Due to this, some sites experienced certainly high ranking while some were badly affected.

With a long history of Google algorithms and updates, January 2020 update seems to be the most trending and most searched update on the search engine. Every time Google comes up with new updates the user experience becomes more relevant. The new update seems to be the most significant one and was named as ‘broad core algorithm update’.

22 Voice Search Stats Marketers and Businesses Should Know to Prepare for the Upcoming Revolution in 2020

In 2020, voice search is going to be the most popular trend affecting not just a particular segment but the whole world. In fact, experts are saying that voice search is the new organic search, rapidly penetrating the lives of common people.

Several surveys, research, and studies were conducted recently to assess the impact of voice search on lifestyle, behavior, shopping pattern, and business. All of them suggest that voice-search may not be the death of text-based search, but a favorite search alternative among youth, adults, and even seniors.

List of 22 Voice Search Stats suggesting that the Voice Search Revolution is imminent:

The Demand and Use of Voice-Enabled Devices Are Increasing at an Exponential Rate. 

  1. An increase of 200% YOY in the global smart speaker shipments is reported in Q3, 2019. To be precise, around 22.7 million units of smart speakers were shipped in just 4 months last year. While Amazon topped the ranking as a popular smart speaker brand in the world, Google closely follows it, especially in Western Europe. After that, the Chinese trio –Alibaba, Baidu, and Xiaomi, is making a strong presence in the domestic market.

It clearly reflects that consumers are progressively showing interest and recognizing the subtleness of the voice’s user-friendly interactions. (Reference: Strategy Analytics)

  1. The size of the Smart Speaker Market is projected to exceed $30 billion by 2024. On the other hand, global shipments are expected to increase at over 33% CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) between 2018 and 2024.

This growth is attributable to the increasing need for more consumer convenience and network connectivity at a global level. Smart speakers will be integrated with intelligent home appliances, including humidifiers, thermostats, etc. (Reference: Global Market Insights)

  1. As per OC&C Strategy Consultants, 55% of households will possess smart speakers by 2022. Meanwhile, Amazon is expected to dominate the new channel by the lion’s share, i.e., more than twice what its close competitor has. (Reference: CISION PR Newswire)
  2. 1 out of 4 internet users is already using voice search every month. When it comes to smart speakers, there are great opportunities ahead, as 34% of respondents admitted that they are interested in purchasing a voice-controlled smart assistant. (Reference: Global Web Index)

Voice Search Will Have Dominion on E-Commerce Industry as We Will Go Through This Decade. 

  1. The increasing inclination of people towards voice search will make this omnichannel a major disruptive force in the retail. The study conducted by OC&C Strategy Consultants shows that voice shopping is expected to reach $40 billion by 2022 from $2 billion (today).

The three most common shopping categories searched through voice are Grocery (20%), Entertainment (19%), and Electronics (17%). (Reference: CISION PR Newswire)

  1. According to OC&C Strategy Consultants, around 85% of consumers are satisfied with the choices that Amazon suggests. It implies the status of “Amazon Choice” is expected to become important more than ever as it seems to have a firm hold over consumers’ purchase decisions. (Reference: CISION PR Newswire)
  2. There is a great potential for smart speaker shopping as around 56% of online grocery shoppers currently use/plan to buy a smart home speaker as compared to 47% of internet users aged between 16 and 64.

Global Web Index

Image Source: Global Web Index

Thus, marketers need to align their targets by offering something new that proves to be beneficial in the consumer shopping journey, for instance, cooking advice or reducing hassle in shopping. (Reference: Global Web Index)

  1. 51% of people use voice search to research products, 36% to add products to the shopping list, 30% to track the package, and 22% make a purchase. (Reference: Narvar)

Narvar Consumer Report 2018

Image Source: Narvar Consumer Report 2018

  1. As per Voicebot Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report, “voice shopping is the monthly habit for 11.5% (1 out of 9) of smart speaker owners”. This data translates into 5.44 million Americans using smart speakers to buy products on a regular basis. (Reference: Voicebot)

Voicebot Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report

Image Source: Voicebot Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report

  1. In 2017, Google shared that 48% of smart speaker owners are interested in receiving personalized tips and information about brands. So, one can guess that smart speakers are making people’s lives better for the last few years and are expected to do this more at present and in the future. (Reference: Think with Google)

Think with Google

Image Source: Think with Google

Voice-Enabled Device Interaction Is Progressively Influencing The Consumers’ Day-To-Day Life. 

  1. General awareness of voice search is, unexpectedly, high. 90% of surveyed people were aware of voice technology, and 72% of them have used a voice assistant. The adoption of this technology is more common among younger consumers, households with children, and households with an income of more than $100k. (Reference: PwC)
  2. Even though the younger generation is adopting voice technology much quicker than its older counterpart. Younger generation people are, statistically, less likely to use voice assistants. On the contrary, people aged between 25 and 49 are using their voice assistants more often and are considered to be heavy users. (Reference: PwC)

PwC Consumer Intelligence Series Voice Assistants Survey, 2018

Image Source: PwC Consumer Intelligence Series Voice Assistants Survey, 2018

  1. 3 out of every 4 consumers use their mobile voice assistants at home (that totaled to 74% of the consumers). 35% use voice to check weather and news, 33% play music and 32% search for something that they usually type in a search engine on a daily basis.

Apart from this, 31% of consumers daily use voice to send a text or email, and 29% to ask a quick question. (Reference: PwC)

PwC Consumer Intelligence Series Voice Assistants Survey, 2018

Image Source: PwC Consumer Intelligence Series Voice Assistants Survey, 2018

  1. On average, 80% of consumers who do voice shopping are satisfied. Food orders through voice assistants (34%) topped the chart, while travel reservations through voice assistants were the least choice of consumers. 26% would like to consider making travel reservations through voice assistants in the future though. (Reference: PwC)
  2. The use of voice assistants makes a substantial impact on smart home purchases. 44% of consumers reported to use their voice assistant to control another smart home device: Television (58%), Lights (36%), Thermostat (29%), and Alarm System (26%). (Reference: PwC)
  3. NPR survey suggested that nearly 65% of Amazon Echo or Google Homeowners can’t imagine going back to the days before they owned a smart speaker. Plus, 42% of people affirmed that voice-enabled devices have quickly become an essential part of their lives. (Reference: GeoMarketing)
  4. In the whitepaper – The Next Generation Of Search: Voice, over 20% of voice featured snippets are triggered by the following top 25 words of which the most frequently occurring terms are How, What, and Best. (Reference: seoClarity)

seoClarity (The Next Generation of Search: Voice)

Image Source: seoClarity (The Next Generation of Search: Voice)

  1. In the beginning, when Siri and Google’s voice search was introduced, it was common for queries to get misinterpreted. However, the accuracy rate for voice-search platforms has risen to above 90% for the last few years and is expected to increase more. This improvement is encouraging more and more people to do simple tasks via voice search on a daily basis.
  2. 50% of voice assistant users agreed that the use of smart speakers helps them feel organized, 45% informed, 37% happy, 35% smart, 31% confident, and 30% free. (Reference: PwC)

Voice Search Has a Direct Impact on Local Search.

  1. 22% of voice queries are made about local information, such as directions, restaurants, local services, shopping, local events, etc. As a result, local is the most significant commercial intent among voice searches. (Reference: seoClarity)
  2. 46% do voice search to seek information about local businesses daily. Besides, 27% visit the website of a local business after performing a local voice search.  (Reference: BrightLocal)

BrightLocal Local Business Study for Voice Search, 2018

Image Source: BrightLocal Local Business Study for Voice Search, 2018

Optimizing Content for Voice Search Can Help Drive More Calls and Customers

  1. Caller retention rate is 28% higher than web lead retention rate, and caller converts 30% faster into a customer than web leads. (Reference: Forrester)

So, How Can You Achieve More Lead Conversions via Voice-Enabled Devices and Voice Searches?

  • Since voice searches tend to be longer than traditional text searches, businesses should optimize their content for long-tail keywords and queries that are more likely to be spoken out loud by people.
  • Even though voice search keywords and queries are not the same as that of text searches, the same SEO strategies and principles apply. Thus, businesses should stick to the best SEO practices to get higher SEO ranking.
  • Optimize the content for local searches and include easily accessible contact and address information. Update your Google business listing, and add “near me” in the title tags, meta description, and anchor text.
  • Make a list of questions that most consumers ask about your business, products, services, and relevant things before making a purchase and add them to your website for improving SEO and CRO.
  • Perform a call analysis to find out whether you should retarget a caller and with what ad campaign. Evaluate how well each location is bringing more conversions from calls and what tactics worked in your favor.

The voice search revolution is going to become more prominent in the future. Using it to your advantage and getting prepared for it as early as possible will help you stay updated, more relevant, and surpass those who are resistant to neoteric changes. 

Are E-A-T and YMYL Important Ranking Factors in Google’s Algorithm? Read out What Google’s Latest Guidelines Say

On December 5, 2019, Google released Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines (that you can download here).

[Download link: //static.googleusercontent.com/media/guidelines.raterhub.com/en//searchqualityevaluatorguidelines.pdf]

Since the release of these guidelines, people are raising various questions such as:

  • Does E-A-T directly impact the ranking of a website? 
  • Is there an indirect relationship between E-A-T and website ranking? 
  • Can E-A-T increase the chance of visibility in SERPs?
  • What does YMYL mean for my web page?
  • Why should I care about YMYL while hiring Main Content (MC) creators or sharing some information?

If you are also trying to find answers to these questions, you can relax as we are going to cover them in this blog.

Let’s first talk about E-A-T and its related facts and possible deductions that one can conjure after reading guidelines.

What does E-A-T exactly mean? 

E-A-T is an acronym for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.

It is a paradigm used by human Google raters for the assessment of websites, web pages, and content creators as a whole. It means understanding what E-A-T refers to is of great importance for you.

According to the shared guidelines, websites or web pages that have no beneficial purpose, do not benefit readers in any way, or spread hatred, cause harm or swindle users should get the Lowest Ranking. 

Here is the screenshot of an excerpt from Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines:

msg

So, if you want your page to receive high ranking, you need to incorporate expertise, authority, and trust in your website as well as the content.

Let’s take a look at each of these parameters separately.

Expertise

The content of your website should be created by people who possess the necessary knowledge and have a better understanding of your field. However, it doesn’t mean that the content creator always has to be an expert or a degree holder in every case.

For instance, if you have a blogging website to share useful information about your life experiences that can genuinely help other people, your website will, still, be considered by Google. Why? It’s because Google has made an exception for everyday expertise.

On the other hand, if you have a website that tells people about treatments for certain diseases, healthy and precautionary tips, and medications, the content should be created by someone who has expertise in the medical field.

The main point is to find the true purpose of the page and produce content that is valued by readers of that category. Providing incorrect, misleading, outdated, incomplete, or useless information can hurt the ranking of your page.

Right from the beginning, the primary purpose of Google is to present information that helps, guides, and updates users in the most accurate manner. If you aren’t doing that, it means you are gradually being kicked out of the league of their consideration.

Authoritativeness

While expertise refers to having quintessential skills or knowledge on a particular subject, authoritativeness is more like having an online reputation.

Let’s assume you are just a random blogger telling people whether some medicine is right for them to treat a specific disease. In this case, you don’t have authority. Why? You didn’t get a degree in medical science and you are not a doctor. However, if you are a doctor, practice at some recognized hospital, then you have the eligibility to write about this topic.

This is not all that counts for authoritativeness.

How popular you are and how much recognition you have earned online also plays a substantial role in developing your authority. 

Authoritativeness also encompasses what actions people inside and outside your industry take when they recognize the expertise. That recognition can be identified in the form of links, mentions, shares, reviews, or any other citation.

The one key factor that goes along with authoritativeness is that if you are an authority, you should have either expertise or trust, preferably both things. Authoritativeness never stands alone.

Social media Klout is another element of authoritativeness. There are ways that point out authority in social media profile, such as, number of shares, followers, and reviews, time period on social media account, the coveted verified check, and so on.

Here is the example of twitter profile of Sundar Pichai. You can notice easily the coveted verified check, his designation, joining date, followers, and number of shares, likes, and comments.

Many of these metrics can be easily faked. But when all these metrics are combined together along with some social proof (as shown in this profile), it clearly states that the person has authority in the industry.

Trustworthiness

All of us know that trust cannot be built in a day or by one justified action. It takes time and a lot of hard work to earn the trust of people and Google as well.

When you expect people to invest in your business, buy a product from you, or visit your blog regularly, you need to give them something to build trust. Since people have to feel that they can trust a brand or some advice, Google wants to rank those websites and pages that it can trust.

To increase trustworthiness, the easiest thing you can do is to share and highlight the credentials of content creators and websites.

Awards, testimonials, endorsements, certifications, and various other factors are there that can help you build trust among people (and Google).

E-A-T also has its ties with the YMYL concept.

What does YMYL mean?

Google categorizes the web pages that sell products, impart services or share information that could potentially impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety as Your Money or Your Life” pages.

The topics covered under YMYL pages are:
  • News and current events about international events, business, politics, science, technology, etc. (news related to everyday lifestyle, sports, and entertainment are not included in this category)
  • Civics, Government, and Laws related information that covers topics such as child adoption, divorce, custody, will creation, etc.
  • Financial information or advice about investments, retirement planning, insurance, loans, banking, taxes, etc.
  • Shopping pages that allow people to make a purchase online and pages that allow people to transfer money
  • Health and safety advice about medical issues, drugs, hospitals, or emergency preparedness
  • Information related to groups of people about their ethnicity, race, religion, disability, age, nationality, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and so on.
  • Topics that involve big decisions such as housing information, fitness, and nutrition, job search, college selection, etc.

Google has very high Page Quality rating standards for YMYL pages because low quality can harm users in a variety of ways. 

Thus, remember that if your web page falls under the YMYL category, your content must not have a negative influence on happiness, financial stability, health, or safety of people in any manner. Have content creators who are enriched with expertise in the required field.

Take care of your readers, users, and followers and make them feel safe. And, E-A-T is the way to do it.

Role of E-A-T in SEO

The answer to whether E-A-T directly or indirectly impacts the ranking of a page is not straightforward.

However, it can be concluded from the above information that E-A-T is playing a great role in Google’s organic search results.

According to the Guidelines of Search Quality Evaluator, Google considers high-quality pages that have:

  • High level of E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness)
  • A satisfactory amount of high-quality MC (Main Content) along with a descriptive and helpful title
  • Sufficient information about the person responsible for the website.
  • Satisfying customer service information if a page is primarily for shopping
  • Positive website reputation and information of the content creator responsible for the main content of the website, if different from that of website

The web pages (and YMYL pages) that have high-quality content will have a high E-A-T level. So, your primary focus should be on creating content that your target audience wants or needs.

How to Demonstrate High-Level E-A-T in Your Website? 

To amp the on-page SEO, we are sharing some of the best practices to improve the E-A-T level of your website:

Share information about the Author of the Content with a Byline & Bio

Google advises people to create content with journalistic professionalism, which means every piece of content published on your website should have the writer’s name and byline.

If the author is a recognized expert in your field, highlight his/her biographical details. Apart from this, you can also create a separate bio page and add an excerpt from it at the bottom of the content (the author’s box).

For better understanding, let’s take an example of a popular website wikiHow. You can easily check that, at the end of the article, it has shared who helped in creating content, what the author does in real life and other useful information. Besides, it has also mentioned how many times the article has been read.

 

This is what creates authoritativeness, trust, and display the expertise of the author.

Providing essential information of the author such as full name, headshot, title/position, a detailed bio, and contact is an excellent way to build trust in the eyes of your readers and Google. 

Highlight your contact info so that users can easily spot it

You need to keep in mind that Google’s E-A-T framework assesses your website as a whole. So, make sure you highlight About Us, Contact Us, and even Customer Support page link in the main or footer navigation.

Check another example of a home page of a Digital Marketing and SEO company website. You can easily spot About Us and Contact info at the top of the page. Highlighting information about your company and contact information in this manner is a good strategy to build trust and avoid shadiness.

If there is no such page on your website, make them now. There is no leverage for sites that don’t reveal such information.

Eliminate or Refine Your Low-Quality Content

We have told you above what high-quality pages look like. Low-quality pages are the opposite of that. Deciding on whether to remove or refine the existing content can make a significant impact on the traffic.

If your content is no longer useful or really terrible, don’t waste time in improving it. Remove it immediately. If it can be improved, updated, or refined with little efforts, only then you should devote your time to the old content.

What to do to raise E-A-T level:

  • Assign a more authoritative person to create content
  • Add quotes from trustworthy sources, citations and experts
  • Improve the readability, grammar, spelling, and structure of content
  • Ensure that the content is comprehensive
  • Write a new and engaging title
  • Add visuals, charts, screenshots, and links (and optimize them)
  • Add a video if possible for people who prefer videos than textual information.

Provide Insights from High-Quality Thought Leadership 

The reputation of your brand matters a lot. Otherwise, people won’t give a try for your products or services and Google, as well, will not consider your website as trustworthy.

In this case, you can benefit from thought leadership. Share insights, tips, and tricks that your customers, consumers, users, or readers find helpful and valuable.

Final Thoughts

Google disclosed that E-A-T applies to all kinds of websites whether they are gossip websites, fashion websites, news journals, sports websites, humor websites, or discussion forums.

If your website incorporates a high level of E-A-T framework, there are higher chances that your page will appear in SERPS and so is true for vice-versa.

In the end, we will recommend you that if you, yourself, don’t have expertise in some topic that you want to share through your web page, it’s best to hire subject matter experts who can dig deep into the topic and share valuable information.

Stop sharing irrelevant, incomplete, and misleading information that is of no value for your users or can harm them.

Ensure that your web page has high-level E-A-T because even if E-A-T is not a ranking factor and you are following Google’s E-A-T guidelines, it means you are creating content that your readers want or help them do some task safely.

In other words, you are ensuring high customer experience that ultimately helps you rank high in Google, drive more traffic, and gain conversions.

How to Plan Strategies for Website Redesigning?

If you are still relying on the existing website then you might see a devastating decline in your targeted audience and conversion leads. With this, your business will fall down and your brand image will suddenly diminish in the market.

All the business owners must carry this thought in their minds that how important is to maintain a website with all the necessary amendments. Everybody is much aware of the importance of deriving high human traffic on a web or site and how it can increase the rate of conversion and revenue. Therefore, redesigning a site is the highly recommended solution that will gear up your business with high growth and productivity.

Before one goes for redesigning process there are lot of questions that might pop up on his/her head such as the results of website redesign, time taken on website redesign, required cost, how often one should redesign a site, how to plan website redesigning, what strategies should be adopted, what challenges can be witnessed in this path, and so on.

Let’s proceed to clear the above thoughts in a detailed manner.

We are living in the era of digital marketing where businesses are dominated by the online market and its audience. Maintaining business with the support of an updated site has its own benefits.

A new website or a redesigned site creates more opportunities by attracting more audience which in turn generates high conversion of leads.

Impact of Website Redesigning

A website is an important business tool that requires updates every 6 to 8 months. More than 90% audience is active on online platforms so they would prefer to look for a site that comprises special features such as attractive outlook, responsive site, creative content, animations, mobile-friendly, fast loading, easy navigation, and so on. If a site is running with the presence of these features then there is no one who can beat you in online marketing.

Let’s see how redesigning helps business owners.

  • Generates human traffic – A business would like to flourish in the presence of high human traffic. With the improvements in the site performance, more visitors will search for you and in this way more traffic will be experienced on the site or web.
  • High visibility – When more people will search you on the search engine your business will experience high ratings. Website redesigning will then accelerates business growth with high visibility in the online market.
  • High conversion of leads – The ultimate goal of any business is to fetch the targeted audience with more conversion rates. Creating an appealing site with authentic content, and other impressive features will attract potential customers which will improve the brand image and more sale opportunities.

How to create strategies for website redesigning?

Launching a site with certain updates will improve the search quality on the search results and will create better profit margins. It doesn’t matter whether the size of your business unit is large or small there will always a need for a website that is free from plagiarized content and all the faulty features that discourage the efficiency and functionality of a site as well as the business.

A successful business runs on certain strategies, therefore, developing effective strategies for website redesigning or website migration is very crucial.

  • Know the need of your website – To start with the making of strategies, one should focus on creating and identifying the URLs. The selection of URLs decides the number of visitors on the site. To initiate a strategy a business owner must know his/her requirements like what type of content you want to add on your site, how many pages you want to add, which page you want to get more traffic,  and so on.
  • Analysis of Inbound links– While considering the redesigning process a web designer should set his/her goals. For instance, URLs play an important role in improving brand visibility in the online market. Analyzing the inbound links will improve the searches of the pages. By doing this a list of relevant pages will be created which will improve the quality and efficiency of the content.
  • Support of SEO audit – SEO is the backbone of the site, having an SEO audit support will help a site in evaluating the strength, weakness, and risks. Through the SEO, webmasters or web developers are able to create a roadmap with true knowledge and creative features such as appealing title, page titles, URL structure, site speed and performance, internal or external links, etc so that in future business doesn’t get affected in any way.
  • Choose pages with high traffic – Technically, the audience target those pages which appear on the top of the search list. Paying attention to the pages with inbound links will help your business with improved rankings and visibility. This will directly send the audience to your site from other sites. Therefore, it is very important to identify the most connected links which have more traffic than yours.
  • Determine your website redesigning goals and objectives – The goals and objectives may differ from person to person. However, while considering the redesigning process, make sure that your site is a better version from the competitor’s site.

Typically a site hinders growth only if the content is plagiarized, keywords are not unique, improper navigation, and high loading time. To see potential the potential results in the online presence, one must focus on developing strategies and brand building, site’s outlook, tracking features, and so on. Website redesigning or website migration process is, therefore, the best solution for attracting potential human traffic and increase brand visibility in the online market. Before, going for this process don’t forget to consider a plan with authentic knowledge and original content through SEO. Business owners should also understand that strategies don’t fetch results overnight; it requires adequate planning and patience to witness positive changes. So web developers should plan strategies in such a way that it helps in monitoring the site performance and maintaining the website structure.

Top 20 Google Analytics Metrics You Should Keep an Eye On in 2020

Every website has some specific goals to achieve. Google Analytics (GA) is a revolutionary tool that helps in analyzing whether a website is actually accomplishing these goals without spending a penny. Not every website has the same goals. While a blogger’s website goal is to increase the number of readers, an e-commerce website’s goal may be conversion and increasing revenue.

Calls-to-action (CTAs) are the critical elements that link the objectives of a website to its goals. The CTAs embedded within your website content may range from Registration form to Sign up and Buy buttons. The only way to know how these CTAs are performing is to monitor website metrics or key performance indicators (KPIs).

In this post, we are going to introduce the top 20 Google Analytics Metrics that you must track in 2020 to stay ahead of the competition in the digital landscape. But before diving deep into the details of crucial metrics, let’s have a glimpse of what important Google Analytics Metrics you will learn about.

Most Useful Google Analytics Metrics

  • Sessions and Users – to monitor traffic
  • New and Returning Visitors – to know how often users are returning
  • Pageviews vs. Unique Pageviews – to know if your content is compelling
  • Bounce Rate – to check if visitors are being satisfied
  • Bounce Rate by Browser – to find out if there is an issue with a particular browser
  • Average Session Duration– to check the quality of traffic
  • Exit Percentage – to check which web page is underperforming
  • Locations – to monitor from which country more traffic is generating
  • Device Usage – to know the responsiveness of your website
  • Behavior Flow – to see how people go through your website
  • Top 10 Landing pages – to check which landing or entrance pages are more relevant
  • Site Speed – to know how fast your website is loading
  • Sessions by Channel – to track performance on individual channels
  • Acquisition Overview – to keep an eye on traffic sources
  • Social Overview – to find the impact of social media on your website
  • Traffic Sources – to track performance across top sources
  • Goal Conversion Rate – to see if visitors are performing desired actions
  • Organic vs. Paid Searches – to analyze the share of organic traffic
  • Top 5 Search Queries – to know the most common search queries for your business
  • Users by Gender – to check whether content is according to target group
  1. Sessions and Users

The first two fundamental metrics to monitor website traffic are the number of sessions and users. Google Analytics sees each visitor as a user and also distinguishes between new and returning users. Besides, each user who visits your website also generates one or more sessions, whereby the session is terminated after half an hour of inactivity (and also at midnight).

Where to Find

You can see both metrics on the default dashboard of Google Analytics as soon as you log into the account. Alternatively, you can also find these metrics by navigating to “Audience” > “Overview”.

  1. New and Returning Visitors

The differentiation between new and returning visitors can be helpful in gaining valuable insights to improve website performance. The behavior of both groups differs significantly and their relationship to a website is influenced by several factors such as business model, industry, user intent, and marketing channel responsible for initial contact.

When visitors return to your website, it implies they already have increased interest in your brand, service, or product and you can guide them to do the desired action by presenting dynamic and personalized content. Besides, you can raise the number of returning visitors by remarketing techniques.

Where to Find

You can track this metric by clicking on “Audience” > “Behavior” > “New vs. Returning”.

  1. Pageviews vs. Unique Pageviews

A pageview simply means any view of page tracked by Google Analytics. According to GA, unique pageview is counted when the same user goes on a single page several times per session. In simple words, when you land on a page, it’s a page view. When you reload the same page, it counts another. If you leave the page and come right back, it is also counted as another pageview. Thus, it is a very useful metric to check if the content of a page is really remarkable.

Where to Find

To track pageviews, you can navigate to “Audience” > “Overview”.

  1. Bounce Rate

This KPI describes the percentage of sessions during which a single page (landing page) was visited. As such, it is helpful in finding whether the visitors are finding the content they need on your website. If they don’t see what they are looking for, they instantly leave the website without further interaction and bounce. A low bounce rate means the higher average session duration and the higher number of pages viewed in a single session.

Where to Find

Bounce rate is located on the default dashboard of Google Analytics. You can also find it going to Audience and then Overview.

  1. Bounce Rate by Browser

You know that browser compatibility is one of the critical factors responsible for enhanced user experience and successful online presence. Since browser-related issues usually occur repeatedly due to minor display errors and browser updates, you can detect and identify browser-related issues with an increased bounce rate. Plus, you can also inspect which browsers and their versions are most frequently used by the target audience.

Where to Find

In GA, go to Content > Top Content. Go to segmentation options located above the center pane and then, go down to Browser. Now, you can check out the bounce rate.

  1. Average Session Duration

This metric is used in combination with the bounce rate to compare the quality of generated traffic. The lower bounce rate and the higher average session duration mean you are receiving the higher quality of traffic and anticipating the higher conversion probability.

Where to Find

The data of average session duration can be seen by navigating to Audience > Overview.

  1. Exit Percentage

An exit page is the last page visited during a particular session. If exit rate for a certain page is higher, you can do something to improve its performance and retain the visitors for a longer duration.

Where to Find

To see exit rate in GA, go to Behavior > Site Content > All Pages and look at each page % Exit number.

  1. Locations 

Through Google Analytics, you can find out where your visitors are coming from (by country). This metric can also be used to filter data while looking at other sections of GA.

Where to Find

To find it, click on Audience, Geo and then Location.

  1. Device Usage

The metric ‘device usage’ tells you how responsive your website is. Undoubtedly, your website should be responsive no matter what technology is used. Users come from different sources and optimizing the responsiveness feature of your website will give you an extra edge.

Where to Find

You can probe ‘Device Usage’ by clicking on Audience, Mobile and then Overview.

  1. Behavior Flow

Through Behavior Flow, one can analyze how users navigate a site based on some type of acquisition. In other words, this metric helps you see the path that visitors traverse from one page to another. Precisely, you can discover what content is most engaging.

Where to Find

You can check out Behavior Flow by clicking on Behavior.

  1. Landing Pages

It’s interesting to know that, in most cases, more than 90% of traffic is generated from a maximum of 10% of all landing pages, especially when it is about organic visits. Therefore, problems or improvements on such pages also have a massive impact on the generation of overall traffic. You can monitor quantitative as well as qualitative performance of the top landing pages as they play a great role in accomplishing marketing objectives.

Where to Find

Click on Behavior on the GA dashboard. Go to Site Content > Landing Pages. The top landing pages for the selected duration will be displayed.

  1. Site Speed

Site speed is a critical ranking factor that helps you gain a competitive edge. If your website doesn’t load quickly enough, the visitor will instantly close it and visit another website that loads faster. If site speed is too low, they won’t even see what you are offering or sharing. This is, perhaps, the most frightening nightmare for a marketer. So, the loading speed of your website matters a lot.

Where to Find

You can get there by going to Behavior and Site Speed.

  1. Sessions by Channel 

Google Analytics tool classifies your traffic so that you can track the performance of your website on individual channels such as organic, paid, direct, email, social, and so on. The metric, sessions by channel, means the number of channels assigned to each channel group.

Where to Find

You can find this metric by clicking on Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels.

  1. Acquisition Overview

This is one of the most useful metrics which you should track most often as it enables you to keep an eye on different traffic sources such as organic search, direct hits, referrals, etc. Besides, it also contains details about session, percentage of new sessions, bounce rate, and a lot more. Through this metric, you can have a bird’s eye view of how users are engaging with your website.

Where to Find

After logging into Google Analytics, you can find Acquisition Overview by going to Acquisition and then Overview.

  1. Social Overview

This tab helps you measure social relationship as you can find information about where your content gets shared, onsite user engagement, and flow of users through your website. To know more, you can also create goals to track the social media role and value for conversion.

Where to Find

You can get to Social Overview by navigating to Acquisition > Social.

  1. Traffic Sources 

This KPI provides an overall view of your sources in the form of a table. Each row denotes a traffic source and includes total sessions, new sessions, bounce rates, average session duration, and goal conversion as well. The list of traffic sources will grow as your website grows and by identifying underperformers, you can make improvements accordingly.

Where to Find

It is located under Acquisition Section. There you will find All Traffic and then Source/Medium.

  1. Goal Conversion Rate 

It is one of the most important metrics you need to track. It refers to a process in which a visitor performs a desired action such as an online purchase, registration, or subscription. In GA, you can create a maximum of 20 conversion goals or target actions. After creation, you can easily track them for in-depth analysis and sustainable optimization to attain defined business goals.

Where to Find

To find metric and set up goals, go to Conversions > Goals > Overview > Set up Goals. After navigation, you will find admin tab with two options: +New Goal and Import from Gallery. GA’ Solutions Gallery has more than 3000 goals and there are higher chances that you will find some relevant goals for your website as well.

  1. Organic vs. Paid Sessions 

This KPI assists in comparing the number of clicks in Google Search Console that provides organic traffic and Google Ads that provide paid traffic with the tracked number of sessions.

Where to Find

For organic traffic, click Audience and then Overview. Click on the grey box that says “All Users”, scroll to Organic Traffic, select it, and press the Apply button. Now, you can see organic traffic for your website.

Alternatively, you can analyze both traffic by going to Acquisition > All Traffic > Source/Medium. Scroll down the page to view different traffic sources, including organic traffic (google/organic) and paid traffic (google/cpc).

  1. Search Queries

Researching on top search queries (that ultimately results in clicks) can reveal insightful information. You can check out whether the majority of clicks are for dubious or relevant search queries and find out how many overlaps there are. It helps you improve your content, tune the keywords in a post, think about posts you might want to create, and much more. For instance, transaction search queries (e.g. buy content management software) are often covered via SEA (Search Engine Advertising) and informational search queries are accessed via SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Where to Find

First of all, you need to find Landing Pages and after that, choose a specific page or post. Take a look at the keywords being displayed. This way, you can have an overview of keywords your page or post is ranking for.

  1. Users by Gender and Age

Through Google Analytics, you can have a view of different demographic characteristics of website visitors such as age, gender, and even general interests. This type of information is significant in customizing content to specific target groups. However, this data is not available by default. So, you need to enable the reports on demographic characteristics and interests.

By using this kind of information, you can ensure that you are reaching predefined target group and identifying (or converting) new target groups as well.

How to Enable

From Admin Tab: Sign in Google Analytics and click Admin. Navigate to account and property. In the Property column, go to Property Settings. You will find Advertising Features and set Enable Demographics and Interests Reports to On. Then, Save.

From Reporting Tab: Sign in GA account and navigate to account, property and view. Click Reports and then go to Audience > Demographics > Overview report and click Enable.

Final Thoughts

The digital world is expanding beyond your imagination and you need to stay updated, informed, and prepared to lead the competition. Ignoring the importance of website analysis tools like Google Analytics and not paying attention to crucial metrics can be harmful to your business. So, pull your socks up and get ready to embrace the challenges coming your way with the beginning of a new decade.

How Python has now become a Master of all the other Programming Languages in Web Development?

Companies across the globe use the Python programming language for developing software, creating WebPages and websites, analyzing data, and automating the rest of the technical operations. It is one of the topmost languages being utilized in almost every sector that allows developers and creators to develop and manage the operations of multiple projects.But first, let us look into its meaning.

What is Python?

Python is a high-level programming language that is created with an aim of ensuring the code readability of the programmers. Google has been a great supporter of Python. It is now considered as a substantial language at Google. Besides C+ + and Java, Python has gained a lot of popularity by the time. It is used by multiple sectors for building data structures and productivity tools, encouraging program modularity, code reusing, doing scientific computing, and fulfilling web development purposes. It also supports various Internet Protocols such as HTML, JSON, Email marketing, and other protocols that help in advancing the web and internet development.

Numerous industries such as Insurance, Aerospace, Finance, Business services, Retail banking, Business Services, healthcare, hardware, Info Tech, software development, and consulting services are growing more opportunities by using Python.

Role of Python in Web Development

Web development and Python is a great choice among developers in leading an engaging business. Developing a website and building web apps is one of the most crucial tasks of Python. As we all know the website is the backbone of any business, without a website no business can survive. It is not like other languages that can be interpreted in web browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer. However, the language is used in a combination with JavaScript where web developers can execute and operate web applications.

  • The language helps web developers in creating scientific and system applications along with attractive graphics, games, and web applications.
  • Python is widely popular for its high reliability. It is read just like the English language where readers can easily get the details without facing the struggle of the language barrier. Unlike, other programming languages it doesn’t put emphasis on punctuations. Instead, it focuses on the English keywords that help in creating custom applications for a website. Therefore, python allows programmers to create programs by understanding the language.
  • Through Python, one can easily get the coding information that is required on the Internet.
  • Web development has been offered certain frameworks such as Django, Pyramid, Flask, Bottle, Grok, WebPy, TurboGears, and WebApp2 by Python to build and maintain websites. Through these interfaces, developers can create website leading businesses to greater heights.
  • The high-programming language allows web developers and programmers to create web applications with shorter and readable codes. Complex codes, on the other hand, affect the efficiency and functionality of the program. Therefore, Python is the best solution used in the process of web development.
  • Python is featured as an ideal language that helps in creating prototypes for the programs. This not only makes programs readable but also saves time and cost which is much in other programming languages.

What are the advantages of using Python in the world of programming language?

The python language has always been on the top list among other programming languages such as Java and C++ as it supports all the operating systems such as Windows, UNIX, LINUX, and Mac Os. The usage of this particular language is rampant because it reflects versatile features and fewer programming code ability. There are various applications where there is an active utilization of this programming language such as web frameworks, operating systems, network programming, gaming software and applications, business applications, prototyping, language and web development, numeric applications, web frameworks, and applications of graphic design.

Let us look into the benefits that developers and programmers derive by using python.

  • Python is free– Python is an open-source language that can be used widely by anyone without having a subscription or a built platform. Its tools and software that are needed in coding are absolutely free.
  • It requires fewer codes – Unlike, other programming languages, Python doesn’t require much codes to operate the programs that is why coders have always appreciated the language as fewer codes don’t require much space, resources, and time. For instance, C++ requires 6 lines and Python, on the other hand, needs just three lines to support the software.
  • It supports third-party modules – The language comes along libraries of modules that are written itself in Python. Coding becomes easy as the modules don’t require any special syntax. The presence of third party modules allows Python to communicate with other languages and protocols. There are numerous modules in Python such as Requests, Scrapy, Metplotlib, Scikit-learn, Pillow, wxPython, and so on that are used in coding the simpler or complex programs.
  • It enhances programmer’s productivity – The versatile features of Python language are facilitated with high speed which results in easy and quick tasks of software tools. With access to high-speed, programmers can yield high productivity towards their business.
  • User-friendly – The language is not confined to a particular operating system. Programmers or developers from any operating system such as Windows, Mac Os, or Linux can create web pages, coding, prototyping, game development, analysis of data, and automate other important development operations. Therefore, it’s a multi-tasking tool that has now replaced other programming languages.

Python is interpreted as a high-programming language that allows developers and programmers to create and operate codes for particular software. Therefore, it’s a language that is understood and accepted all over the world.

Creating websites or web apps through Python programming language is a bit costly from other programming languages. Declaring the final development cost of websites or web apps is a little difficult. It totally depends on the features that a developer wants to add in his/her site. The more complex features are added higher the cost will be. Therefore, the actual price depends on the client’s requirements.