Archive for the ‘Search Marketing’ Category

Google search and the banner ad

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

The Search Marketing Group wants to bring your attention to a new and innovative way in which companies can have their profile raised in Google search results. Google has announced that now, when your search results appear, so will banner advertisements above the text listing.

This change appears to be a step up from the images that Google have already incorporated in their search results. A large grey box will be filled with the standard text listing and above it will be displayed a big banner advertisement of your site. For instance, a google search producing Virgin Airlines, will have a banner advertising Virgin Airlines above the text listing.

Here at The Search Marketing Group we realise this is a much bigger and bolder way of advertising. As compared to a standard text listing, the banner ad will entice and draw in more page views and clicks. When clicked, it will direct the user straight to your site.

This banner ad will go a long way to promoting brand awareness too. Big brands will instantly have their brand recognised which will lead web users to their site. Brands that are on a smaller scale, will have their profile raised by appearing on the search results too.

Our Search Marketing Company understands this new update places significance on the quality of these ads. There will be no room for poor quality banners on the Google search page. Instead, what will be needed is high quality, respectable banners to set the standard.

This new update is not something that is currently on the grand scale, in fact, only 5% of search queries are showing the banner ads. Some of these companies include; Crate and Barrel, Southwest Airlines and Virgin America.

A question that has been raised is why Google has blurred the lines between paid and organic search? This is a question yet to be answered by Google.

 

Search Marketing Group’s guide to cookies (part two)

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

As a reputable search marketing company, we feel it is not only necessary to remain up to date with the search marketing industry but also other news relating to websites and the net in general.

Here at the Search Marketing Group, we have previously brought you part one of our guide to cookies that outlined what they actually are and how they work. In this second instalment, we are going to give you a brief overview of the advantages and disadvantages of cookies.

The advantages of Cookies

Whilst many are sceptical about cookies, they do in fact have various benefits. They are designed to make the web experience better for users by allowing for personalisation. As we have mentioned in our previous blog post, the information from the cookies allows the website to remember your previous visit. If you haven’t signed out of your account on Amazon, for example, it will remember you when you return and greet you by name. It will also remember items that you have placed in your shopping basket but not purchased thus making it quicker to go through the checkout.

However, the benefits of personalisation extend further than shopping. For example, cookies can be used to remember that a particular user prefers a larger font size than normal and so making the website more appealing when you return. The possibilities really are endless with cookies however the role of them is generally beneficial; making the interaction between users and the sites they frequently visit smoother with no extra toll on the user. Without cookies, shopping online would be much harder.

The disadvantages of Cookies

Many people dislike the idea of organisations storing information about them. Whilst there is nothing especially secret or exceptional about the information gathered, you may just generally feel uneasy. You may view them as invading your privacy. Since most websites will not allow their website to be accessed unless cookies are enabled, browsers are usually set to accept cookies by default.

Cookies are also actual files that are stored on your hard drive. As with all files, they take up precious storage space. The more you surf the internet, the more cookies you are going to accumulate which in turn will fill quite a bit of storage space.

We have only briefly covered the advantages and disadvantages of cookies. Keep checking our blog, Search Marketing Group, for more information on cookies or visit our website.

Search Marketing Group’s guide to cookies (part one)

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

When browsing the internet, you may regularly come across pop-up boxes asking you to accept the use of cookies. These are not edible freebies – so what are cookies?

Cookies could be explained as an intrusive spying mechanism that constantly tracks your every move on the internet however, here at the Search Marketing Group we are going to give a brief two-part guide to cookies to ease any concerns you may have about accepting them.

What are cookies?

It is important to note that they are not programs. They are simply ‘text files’ that you are able to read using Notebook on your computer. A cookie typically consists of two pieces of information: a site name and a unique user ID. They are sent from a website and stored in a user’s web browser whilst a user is browsing that website.

How do they work?

As we have just mentioned, when you visit a site for the first time, a cookie is downloaded. When you visit that particular website in future, your browser will check to see if it has stored a relevant cookie (that is, one containing that site name) and then send that information from that cookie back to the site. The website can then use this information to tailor various pop-up screens, for example. They can also be used to remember log in details or your ‘basket.’

To learn more about cookies, including the advantages and disadvantages, make sure you check our blog or visit our website, the Search Marketing Group.

Search Marketing Company: Why do Google shut down products?

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

As all search marketing companies will be more than familiar with, Google is constantly researching, adapting and changing to explore the space and try new things. They are always pushing themselves and their products further. However, those in the search marketing world and internet users in general are often left wondering why the search giant chooses to shut down various products which people may deem as successful.

Matt Cutts, head of search spam, attempts to answer this question. He states that Google often try out a variety of different ideas at the same time and naturally some of these newly released ideas are not going to succeed. If in the early stages, or indeed later on in the development, that this is clear then it may seem more beneficial to move those resources onto a different project.

On the other hand, it could be that the internal infrastructure underpinning the service has not evolved. It may get to a point where the coding is three generations behind, for example, and so it is sometimes easier to think about shutting that particular products down rather than taking the time to upgrade the technology.

Relating to search and search marketing, Matt states that services must earn its way in terms of the pixels that it uses. For example, the feature to block domains. Whilst the feature is fantastic, if not enough people click on it then perhaps those pixels could be put to better use.

Following these explanations, it shows the search marketing world that Google aren’t purely thinking about what to kill. It may seem surprising but the search giant has a finite number of resources and so these need to be deployed in the most effective way. It is well known in search marketing companies that Google is continually improving and so by putting their resources to new projects rather than dead ends this is how they can develop new features and services.

 

Search Marketing Company: Image Extensions in Google AdWords

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

In the search marketing industry, it is familiar to be constantly inundated with changes, developments and new products from Google. From Glass to search and from Google Maps to Gmail, the search giant is constantly evolving. Recently, the UK’s favourite search engine has announced the official beta for Image Extensions in AdWords. Users of the search marketing nemesis have been spotting the image extensions randomly appearing over the past few months and Google is still currently experimenting with how the images are to be displayed.

 

adwords extension

 

The feature will allow those businesses using AdWords to display relevant images alongside their text ads. The search engine giant has stated that one in six searches on Google provides results with visual content. Images are increasing in demand on the internet. This can be partly reflected in the significant growth of image orientated social media methods, such as Pinterest and Instagram. Now, PPC ads can incorporate this demand by allowing images. Previously, image content could be added into AdWords campaigns solely through product image ads however these were limited to product results only. This new development allows image options to be explored further by a much wider range of advertisers.

Whilst advertisers are able to choose the images that they wish to include alongside their text ads, they must also have the rights to the images that they submit.

For more information on how to engineer a cost effective PPC campaign, contact the Search Marketing Group today for a no obligation chat.

Search Marketing Company: Engaging with users via social networks

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

Many companies are starting to recognise the benefits of social media. With a vast majority of people in the UK holding at least one social network account, social media is a fantastic platform to attract and engage with new customers. The search marketing industry is also recognising the benefits of social media from a search marketing perspective. At the Search Marketing Group, we are going to give a brief overview of why it is important for you as a business to begin a social media campaign.

Those that maybe unfamiliar with the concept of social media may wonder how these popular sites, such as Facebook, Twitter and Google +, can be beneficial for their company.

Many companies, both those that already have an online presence and those that do not, are finding that social networks are a fantastic method to attract and engage with new and existing customers by running competitions, sharing stories and announcing new products and offers.

Google’s Webmaster Help videos give a good example using the social network, Google +. If a customer has a positive experience with your company they can then find your profile on Google + and give you a “+1.” This is the equivalent of a virtual recommendation. They can also post about their positive experience which will then be available for those in their “circles” to read. If an online friend has already used your company, you will be viewed as more of a trusted organisation and so they will be more inclined to click on your website, thus gaining a new customer.

This is a fantastic way to spread digital word of mouth and engage with new customers. For more information on setting up social media accounts from a business perspective or if you are curious about engineering a successful search marketing campaign, visit the Search Marketing Group or contact our team.

 

 

Search Marketing Company: Possible crawl errors

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

In the search marketing industry, it is a well-known fact that Google is not shy when it comes to issuing warnings however the search engine also sends webmasters to let them know of various site errors.

At the Search Marketing Group, we are going to discuss errors that Google may find and report whilst crawling your site. If the Googlebot is unable to crawl your site, the search engine will send you an error message to your webmaster tools account.

There are many types of crawl errors however there are two distinct categories of such errors. These are site errors and specific URL errors.

Site errors mean that Google has been unable to access your site at all. This error is often attributed to your sites robots.txt file however this error message could be returned to you if Google is unable to get through to your sites server to be able to crawl your sites content. Whilst it is natural for you to have various errors, these types of errors can be classed as critical and need to be resolved as soon as possible.

The second class of errors, specific URL errors, occur when the Google crawlers have problems with certain select pages of your site. This could be caused by problems with permissions or server errors however the most common reason for such a problem is broken links. That is, the crawler is attempting to access a page on your site that actually no longer exists.

With the complexity of websites, it is generally the norm that your site will experience some form of error however, you should pay close attention to resolving issues raised to you through your webmaster tools account.

For more information relating to search marketing, please visit our website or contact our team for a no obligation and free audit of your current search marketing campaign.

Search Marketing Company: creating fantastic, user focused content

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

Those that are unfamiliar with the search marketing industry may wrongly assume that search marketing entails a significant focus on link building. However, this is not strictly true. When you are marketing a business offline, you incorporate various different strategies into the campaign in order to see successful results. Search marketing is no different.

Google has made no secret of the fact that uploading fresh and user friendly content will help your rankings in the search engine results pages (SERPS). However, when creating such fantastic content what factors should you take into consideration?

The key is to create content that is user focused as opposed to content that is generated purely for search engines. Ensure that you think about what key points your site is about and how your site is different to others. The content you produce needs to be original and unique so make sure that it is personal to both your company and your industry. Make sure that you upload fresh content to your site at regular intervals. One method that many webmasters use is to create a blog and upload regular content here. If you produce an interesting blog, you will be engaging your users who will check back regularly to read new posts.

However, ensure that you periodically evaluate your site and archive any old content. Google’s goal is to provide quality and relevant search results to users and so by uploading quality and industry-relevant content to your site regularly you are helping to show Google that they should display your site in their search results.

For more information on how to engineer a successful search marketing campaign and the different elements needed, please visit our website or contact our team for a no obligation chat.

Search Marketing: Why do the rankings of new pages fluctuate?

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

Many companies begin to research ethical search marketing and sourcing a reputable search marketing company following a drop in rankings or an inability to break into the top positions in the SERPS (search engine results pages). One such problem that webmasters may encounter is a fluctuation in the rankings of a new landing page. However, why does this occur?

Launching a new landing page with top quality content could be thought of as “breaking news” therefore the new page will receive higher rankings to show users the new information. Over time, the Google algorithms will use a variety of different sources of information to make an informed decision regarding the origin and relevancy of the content which can result in a decrease in the rankings for the page.

The algorithms feed off information so the more information it receives, the better decision it can come to therefore whilst this process is taking place the page is likely to see fluctuation in rankings. Eventually, the rankings for the page will stabilise.

For more search marketing related queries, make sure you check out our website for regular news and technical updates.

Search Marketing: Google as trustworthy as religion?

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

Alongside boosting visibility within the search engine results pages (SERPS), companies also strive to commence successful search marketing campaigns to increase their perceived trustworthiness and reliability. Those that feature higher in Google’s SERPS are often considered to be more reputable companies by users.

Google must be viewed as a trustworthy source within the online world; search marketing companies strive to boost their clients within the SERPS whilst users conduct millions of searches every day using the site. However, have you thought about how much you actually trust Google compared to other institutions?

A recent report by The Future of Britain has highlighted that the world’s favourite search engine is now regarded as being as trustworthy as religious institutions. Whilst Google ranks behind the NHS and the police, they are still considered more trustworthy than banks and insurance companies. Some 17% of people said they had the most faith in Google.

It is no surprise that the highest figures of trust in the search engine came from the younger generation, with 20% of 16 to 24 year olds saying they have the most trust. This is compared to only 17% of the same age group choosing religious organisations.

As well as ranking higher than the media, lawyers and banks, people also have more faith in the search engine than they do in the social media giant Facebook. The social media network is considerably newer than the search giant and people are very aware that the site needs to make money because of its high profile IPO.

For more information on devising successful search marketing campaigns or for news, visit our website today.