At the beginning of this pandemic, back in March of 2020 when the whole world turned upside down, we took what we thought was a bold decision to engage with a website and SEO expert to help us build our own online presence and improve our marketing. That decision and subsequent journey has resulted in 2 engaging websites (with another in the pipeline), a growing understanding of the science behind digital advertising and how to improve our reach, with a growing online following in the local SME community – and of course, most importantly to the bottom line, a steady flow of enquiries and new tenants!
The man behind the science and the guiding support that has transformed our approach is Ayaz Ahmed of AA Internet. In this article, Ayaz shares his views on the trends to look out for in 2021!
Though I have been working with clients, designing and delivering fully SEO ready websites, for over 10 years, my real expertise lies in search marketing and lead generation. Read below to find out the three online search marketing ideas that will be relevant in 2021. Ayaz Ahmed, AA Internet.
1 – UX Signals and SEO
User experience (UX) is is a major practice for serious web designers, and now in 2021 it is a major player in SEO (search engine optimisation) and cannot be overlooked. Not only is designing web experiences and customer journeys from the user’s perspective a highly valued design practice, it is now becoming a central ranking factor for search algorithms.
According to a May 2020 Google Webmaster blog post, Google Search now factors “UX Signals” into it’s ranking algorithms. This update is underscored by new Core Web Vitals, which businesses can use to take the pulse of their UX health. “Core Web Vitals are a set of real-world, user-centred metrics that quantify key aspects of the user experience,” say the writers at Google Webmasters Central. “They measure dimensions of web usability such as load time, interactivity, and the stability of content as it loads.”
Looking to the future, if you want to rank your website, UX will be just as important as traditional SEO practices, if not more so.
– 50% of people won’t purchase from a business that has a poorly designed mobile site (Think With Google)
– 33+% of smartphone users will immediately go to another company’s site if they fail to get what they were looking for (Think With Google)
– 60% of smartphone users have contacted a business directly using the search results (Think With Google)
An excellent analytics product which can help with UX design is Hotjar, this is one of the best tools I have used for gathering user behaviour. Whether it’s using heat maps to see how pages perform for specific segments, or recordings to identify issues that stop people converting, it’s definitely a good tool to have in your UX arsenal. https://www.hotjar.com/
Think, design and build from the user’s perspective and intent. Which brings me on to my next trend.
2 – Search Intent Marketing
In 2019, Google released its update developed to “understanding” peoples’ searches better. Here’s a quote from Google Fellow Pandu Nayak on search intent:
“At its core, Search is about understanding language. It’s our job to figure out what you’re searching for and surface helpful information from the web, no matter how you spell or combine the words in your query.With the latest advancements from our research team in the science of language understanding—made possible by machine learning—we’re making a significant improvement to how we understand queries, representing the biggest leap forward in the past five years, and one of the biggest leaps forward in the history of Search.”
Since rolling out this update, the Google search experience has become much more conversational. The Google algorithm can now interpret intent from all kinds of natural language queries, long and short. Search marketers are already figuring out how to optimise for the intent behind what our audiences are searching for.
There is now a growing ‘search intent’ marketing trend which is tapping into a significant lift in organic search rankings. Here is a statistic which shows how effective this can be:
Businesses have achieved a 677% increase in organic traffic to a landing page after optimising for search intent (Ahrefs)
What would a 600% increase in organic traffic to one of your high-value landing pages do for your business?
3 – Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)
A lot of businesses ask what is conversion rate optimisation (CRO)? The best way to explain it is by two simple terms:
1 – Get people to your website or landing page
2 – Turn those website visitors into revenue-generating customers
A ‘conversion’ could be any action taken which has a desired effect for the business, examples include, the completion of a form, tapping the business phone number or downloading an ebook/brochure. The ‘conversion rate’ is the percentage of visitors that end up completing your desired goal, usually a percentage.
With this in mind, you can look at CRO from two perspectives:
1 – How people are getting to your website (the journey from an ad, social media post, etc.).
2 -How people are behaving once they’re on your website.
This gives us a broader picture of all the key ‘touchpoints’ and ‘triggers’ along the journey, from awareness to conversion, each of which can be optimised to increase the chances that somebody makes it to the finish line. These include:
– Pay Per Click (PPC)
– Landing pages and sales funnels
– Blog posts and content marketing
– Site structure, navigation, and page speed
– Website copy
– Calls to action (CTAs)
– Website forms
You can take a look at some interesting conversion rate statistics from 2020 here:
For more interesting online marketing statistics from 2020 visit:
If you want to get in touch with me for your own business needs, feel free to drop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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