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How Important Is User Experience in SEO for 2021?

How Important Is User Experience in SEO for 2021?

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User Experience in SEO for 2021_
Google’s goal since its founding in 1998 was to provide the best possible user experience. To meet this goal, Google has been issuing updates to its algorithm in order to produce search results that best meet that user’s search intent. SEO used to be about rigging search engines to increase a page’s ranking. However, that wasn’t what Google intended and it’s been forcing SEO in the direction of providing a good user experience ever since.

Why Is User Experience Important in SEO in 2021?

User experience has always been a major part of SEO. Even back in the days of black hat SEO, websites that ranked highly but didn’t offer users a good experience would get a lot of views but would have a high bounce rate. They would also fail to convert a lot of visitors to customers. As Google’s algorithm has gotten better at directing users to better search results, user experience has become an essential part of SEO.

If your website isn’t providing users with a good experience, that will result in a high bounce rate. Google now takes bounce rate into account in its rankings and will decrease your rankings accordingly. The point of SEO is for the users and to help them find your content, not for gaming the search engines. Providing a good user experience isn’t just good for users, but also good for businesses. The better the experience users have when visiting your website, the more likely they are to continue to read, visit again, recommend your website to others, purchase your products or services, and trust your company.

How Important Is User Experience in SEO 2

What Is Google’s 2021 Algorithm Update?

Google is set to release another update in 2021, specifically relating to user experience. What this update will do is add UX (user experience) as an additional ranking factor. Ranking factors are what Google looks at when evaluating websites and determining their rankings.

What Should You Do to Prepare for the Update?

In order to prepare for the Google update, which should be released sometime in 2021, it’s important to look over your website for areas in which your user experience can be improved. Put yourself in the shoes of a user and think about what would help them find their way around your website. It’s also a good idea to look at your competitors’ websites for comparison. If their sites provide a better user experience, then you may be losing customers to them.

What Factors Are Important in UX?

The most important factors to consider when looking at UX are:

  • Mobile-friendliness
  • Page load time
  • Navigation
  • Interactivity
  • Stability of loading content
  • Content quality

Google’s new algorithm update will take into account interactivity, load time, and content loading stability. However, these aren’t the only factors that are important. You should have high-quality content that is informative and well-edited. Your website should be easy to navigate. If users can’t find what they’re looking for, they’ll switch to a different website where they can. Mobile-friendliness is also of vital importance. More Internet searches are performed on mobile devices than on computers now.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

A Very Covid Holiday

A Very Covid Holiday

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A Very COVID Holiday

Thanks to the coronavirus, the 2020 holiday season is going to be very different than normal. With the virus resurging around the world and cities going into lockdown again, the holiday shopping period will be more online than ever before. Online shopping has been growing in popularity for many years, but many people still enjoyed shopping in brick and mortar stores.

With the pandemic, however, online shopping has been surging all year in 2020, and looks like it will only grow as people do their holiday shopping online as well. Some may turn to in-store pickup or curbside pickup, but they’ll be filling those orders online, even if they aren’t having their purchases shipped to them.

 

SANTA with masks

 

How Do I Prepare Ahead of Time for Holiday SEO?

You’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to prepare. It’s recommended that you start your holiday strategy at least 45 days ahead of time. Content can take a while to be indexed and to be ranked, so the sooner you’re prepared, the better off you’ll be during the holiday season.

If you have events or sales, you should have an announcement or save-the-dates available online, preferably posted on social media as well as on your website. Leading up to the beginning of your holiday campaign, you can post more about it on social media to remind your audience that your event or sale is beginning.

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Does All Holiday Content Have to Be New?

If there’s a place to reuse content that worked for last year, then you can reuse content. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t necessarily reuse blogs or social media content. However, landing pages with content that still fits your holiday strategy can be repurposed. In fact, reusing landing pages may actually benefit your SEO strategy for the holidays. Simply redirecting the URL from last year to one more relevant to this year (ex. /holiday-gift-guide-2020 instead of /holiday-gift-guide-2019) and updating any necessary wording in the content will help you preserve any links you already had for the page. That will help you start out the holiday season ahead of the game.

How Important Is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing may be more important than ever before in 2020. Because of the pandemic and lockdown orders, people aren’t seeing friends and family in person as much. This means that they’ve turned to the Internet to meet their communication needs. For many, this means more time spent on social media.

In recent years, shopping on social media has been increasing. Thanks to the additional reliance on social media this year, that trend looks to be continuing. Whether you’re selling products or services, social media platforms geared towards image sharing, such as Pinterest or Instagram, can be especially helpful in showcasing what your business has to offer. Plus, the holiday season is the optimal time to introduce new products or services. People are looking to buy and they’re looking online. Social media can be a great resource for drawing customers’ attention to your new holiday offerings.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

SEO for the Holidays

SEO for the Holidays

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SEO for the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us! People are looking to buy, which means that this time of year is a prime opportunity for marketing. It also means that customers are inundated with sales pitches and marketing efforts more now than at any other time of the year. In order to cut through the noise and reach users through the flood of holiday marketing, businesses have to stand out. How can SEO help you stand out to your customers?

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When Do I Need to Start Holiday SEO Planning?

From a customer’s perspective, it seems that Christmas comes earlier every year, with Christmas merchandise appearing in the stores even before Halloween. While you don’t need to implement your holiday SEO strategy that early, it’s a good idea to start planning for it. Additionally, you should post holiday content leading up to the holiday season. If you have holiday content posted in the month ahead of the holiday season, your content is much more likely to appear and rank on Google.

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Do I Need to Update My Keywords?

Staying on top of keyword research is always a good idea, whether it’s the holidays or not. The keywords that work best right now may not always. Constantly revisiting your keywords will help ensure that you’re using the best ones for your SEO strategy. The holiday season is no exception.

The only difference with the holidays is that you may want to incorporate holiday-themed keywords into your strategy. If your company is having a Christmas sale, for example, keywords to that effect can help direct customers to your website to take advantage of it. A good tool to use for keyword research is Google Trends.

Does All of My Content Have to Be Holiday-Related?

While holiday content isn’t always evergreen, it’s definitely relevant at this time of year. Customers are searching for holiday deals, sales, ideas, and more. While you could avoid posting holiday-specific content, you would miss out on a major source of searches during this time of year. Holiday blog content is a good idea for staying relevant throughout the holiday season. It may also be a good idea to create holiday landing pages on your website. These can help keep your holiday content together on your site and separate from your regular content.

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Do I Need to Optimize for Mobile Devices?

More people shop on their mobile phones every year. This year will be no exception. A lot of holiday purchases will be done on mobile devices. Your regular SEO strategy should already include mobile optimization. Google indexes mobile versions of websites first and has since 2019. If you aren’t already optimizing for mobile, you need to start immediately.

For the holidays, it’s especially important to ensure that your web pages are mobile-friendly and load quickly on mobile devices. If the holiday pages and content aren’t optimized for mobile or load slowly, that can drive away the traffic you’re trying to attract.

Do I Need to Pay Attention to Analytics During the Holidays?

Analytics is an important tool because it can tell you how well your content has performed. You might think that you don’t need to look at the data for your holiday content until after the holidays have passed so you can see what worked well and what didn’t. However, after the holidays is too long to wait.

If you look at your analytics throughout the holiday season, you can react more quickly to what the analytics show. If your SEO strategy needs to be adjusted mid-season, it’s better to know as soon as possible so you can make the necessary changes before the holiday season is over.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

The Rise of Fake News

The Rise of Fake News

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How Social Media Has a Fake News Problem

How Social Media Has a Fake News Problem

You’ve probably heard the words “fake news.” Since the 2016 presidential election, the term has been frequently used to describe news articles. Although news published by legitimate news sources may not have been as fake as claimed, fake news has still been a major problem on the Internet.

Netflix’s new documentary, The Social Dilemma, discusses the prevalence of fake news on social media channels. But what, exactly, is fake news?

What Is Fake News?

Although some use the term “fake news” to describe any news that they don’t like, what it actually means is false information that is presented as true. Typically, fake news has a goal of negatively influencing something or negatively impacting someone’s reputation. Sometimes, fake news is aimed simply at making money because the headlines are clickbait, designed to lure in viewers with sensational headlines that are either heavily exaggerated or not true at all.

Who Publishes Fake News?

Sometimes the people posting fake news are individual users who are simply sharing something they’ve read, not realizing that it isn’t true. Others share fake news for malicious reasons. Sometimes, fake news comes from foreign sources intent on influencing an event, such as the presidential election. It can be difficult to shut down fake news websites when they’re hosted in foreign countries where American laws have no jurisdiction.

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Why Is Fake News a Problem on Social Media?

Fake news is a problem on social media because it’s sensational. Fake news is a lot more newsworthy than real news and because its headlines are often clickbait, fake news articles can trend a lot more quickly than real news can. In addition, many people believe what they read on social media. These fake news articles often receive more engagement than real news because they’re more exciting.

Social media is a great place to share content. Many social media sites, such as Facebook, include sharing news in their mission statements. However, if something doesn’t violate the social media platform’s guidelines, people can post whatever they want, whether it’s true or not. There isn’t necessarily any feature of the social media site that tells people how credible a source is. Many users don’t take the time to do that research themselves.

How Can We Combat Fake News?

Because social media is increasingly becoming how people get their news, whether it’s real or not, it’s important to address fake news. It may not be possible for social media platforms to police what people are posting and prevent fake news from disseminating on their websites. That may mean it falls on users to learn how to tell the difference between real and fake news.

What Can Businesses Do to Combat Fake News?

Businesses can help to combat fake news by ensuring that all of their content is from reputable sources. Ensure that any blog posts are well-researched. Link to your sources. Even if fake news gets more engagement, we can help combat its spread by sharing more real news. Lies may spread more quickly, but posting the truth can help give readers an alternative and may make them think more about believing what they’re reading without checking to see if it’s real.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

The Privacy Dilemma

The Privacy Dilemma

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How Social Media Algorithms Affect User Privacy

How Social Media Algorithms Affect User Privacy

Netflix recently released a documentary called The Social Dilemma that showed how social media has negatively impacted people’s lives. From privacy issues to social media addiction, the documentary has demonstrated that there is a definite dark side to the social media platforms that have become so ubiquitous in our lives.

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How Do Social Media Platforms Make Money?

Most social media platforms are free for users to create accounts. Even companies can create business accounts with social media sites and it doesn’t cost them a thing. So how do social media platforms make money?

They collect data. This data is collected by the platform’s algorithm and use it to generate ads paid for by other companies that target interested users. In addition, social media platforms also often sell that data to third-party companies.

What Does a Social Media Algorithm Do?

All social media sites run on an algorithm. This algorithm analyzes all user actions, tracking which pages you visit, what posts you like, who you’re friends with, where you check in, and any personal information you enter into your profile. The algorithm collects all of this data and uses it to provide you with more content you’re interested in.

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How Do Social Media Platforms Invade Users’ Privacy?

Have you ever wondered how social media platforms know exactly what content to show you? How they suggest articles for you to read that you’re interested in? How they invited you to follow people that you might know? Social media platforms do all of this by collecting data on their users.

If you’ve ever seen the TV show Parks and Recreation, there’s a scene in which the character Ron Swanson discovers that his computer has been collecting information about him in order to show him ads for products he might want. Ron Swanson immediately throws the computer away. The character is notoriously private, but the point stands that it’s important for everyone to be aware of the data they’re sharing online, even inadvertently.

What Do Social Media Sites Do With My Data?

Social media sites do gather data from users in order to keep them engaged with new content that they’ll like. While users may see this as beneficial, it’s actually a double-edged sword. Sure, users get more content they’ll enjoy, but at the same time, they’re also providing the social media platform’s algorithm with even more data. Many social media sites don’t hesitate to sell the data they collect to third-party companies. It’s also possible for data to be stolen by hackers, bots, and malware.

How Can Users Protect Their Data Online?

Social media sites do offer some privacy settings that users can adjust. These settings can help keep other users from seeing a user’s personal data. You can control who can see what on your social media account. You can also hide certain activities on the website to prevent others from seeing. It can be a good idea to block location tracking so the social media platform can’t see your location.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.

How to Avoid Content Cannibalization

How to Avoid Content Cannibalization

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How to Avoid Content Cannibalization
While Google doesn’t punish websites for having duplicate content, content cannibalization is still an issue. There’s already enough competition out there for rankings without having to compete with yourself as well. Content cannibalization occurs when you have web pages of similar content. Google will filter out duplicate content, but similar content will end up competing in the rankings for the same keywords. Google will typically only display one of the pages, but which one gets displayed may differ depending on the day, ultimately resulting in lost traffic to both pages.

So how can you avoid content cannibalization?

What Is Content Cannibalization?

Content cannibalization, or keyword cannibalization, occurs when multiple web pages (or blog articles) contain content that is too similar to each other. These pages will then compete with each other for the same keywords, confusing search engines. Google isn’t sure which one to rank and it may not rank the same one on any given day. This means that instead of driving traffic to both pages at the same time, you’re actually dividing your website’s traffic between the two pages.

Can Internal Links Cause Cannibalization?

The internal link structure of your website can also sometimes cause cannibalization that can occur independently of the pages’ content. If you consistently link to a sub-page on your website, much more so than the home page, then Google may determine that that sub-page is more important than your home page in the hierarchy of your website. When this occurs, the ‘more popular’ web page may be displayed in the search results. This can drive traffic away from web pages that you want to have more traffic.

How Do I Determine that Content Is Too Similar?

To discover which pages are too similar to each other, you can look at which pages aren’t getting as much traffic. The reason for the lower traffic may be cannibalization. You can also do an audit of your content. Look at the content of each page and determine its focus and intent. If two similar pages have different purposes, then there are steps you can take to further differentiate them. If they have the same purpose, then merging the two together may be a better solution.

Can I Merge Content that Is Too Similar?

One option to avoid cannibalization is to merge together any pages that have topics that are too similar. This will direct all traffic that used to be split between the pages to just one, unified web page. Plus, merging content may have the added bonus of fleshing out thinner content. The combined web page will be longer and overall more informative and useful to users.

How Can I Differentiate Pages?

If merging the pages’ content isn’t an option or isn’t preferable, you can try instead to differentiate the pages. Go over the on-page SEO for each page and check the meta-data. If you can re-name headings and the pages’ titles, that can help differentiate them further, both for users and for Google’s algorithm.

It’s also a good idea to go over the content of similar pages. Some rewriting to differentiate the focus of each page may benefit both pages.

Need some help growing your web presence and strengthening your brand? You’ve come to the right place.