Choosing a marketing automation system that fits hand in glove with your business model is an essential component of effective marketing strategy. In fact, HubSpot reports that “spending for marketing automation tools is expected to reach $25.1 billion annually by 2023.” Top performing companies see that marketing automation leads to optimized lead generation and conversion rates.
Marketers want to know that they’re using their time efficiently. Nurturing leads is important, but it’s a delicate balance between how much you spend on each lead, versus how much revenue each lead could potentially bring in. You’re wondering if your efforts are worth the resources that you put into them, and it’s an important question to ask. In today’s highly digital world, it’s getting easier to track marketing campaigns, but knowing exactly what to look for can help companies know the effect that their marketing efforts are having on their bottom line.
Your company now has the world as your playing field. While it can bring revenue in from all around the globe, it also means competition can be from anywhere, especially when other companies have products or services like or similar to yours. Understanding the buyer’s journey is vital in today’s highly-competitive playing field.
The Google I/O 2019 event took place at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, CA. At this year’s event, Google offered many key points that those in the SEO industry will find helpful and exciting.
While many think Google I/O is a developer’s conference, much of the content it shares is very valuable for marketers and SEOs. This year’s key announcement of an evergreen Googlebot got the SEO industry revved up. That news along with the other useful SEO insights gained from the event presents a bright outlook for SEO moving forward.
Google Search State of the Union
Google’s John Mueller and Martin Splitt presented the latest Google search features. They explained how to use the new APIs and features to increase content visibility in the search engine.
Google search evolves and tailors itself to be what publishers and end users need. Gone are the days when Google search results were ten blue links on a page. Today’s search results feature pages in ways that are more eye-catching and beneficial. Tools used to direct how pages appear in the search have changed as well.
It’s important to understand how Google works in finding and indexing web pages. You need to understand how Google works before you can comprehend the changes to Google’s search results.
There are 130 trillion web pages that Googlebot crawls. New websites can wait for Googlebot to reach and index it through links. Submissions to Google Search Console also work. Googlebot starts with one page and then uses internal links to crawl the remaining pages of the website.
The use of backlinks, a solid internal link structure, and unique URLs helps Google find and index content. It’s still allowed to use robots.txt to prevent Google from indexing certain pages. Googlebot can find content now in a variety of ways from APIs, manual GSC submissions, and live streams to RSS feeds and Sitemaps.
Image Search Updates
Images add a lot of value to online content and are useful in a myriad of helpful ways. Improving its image search is a priority for Google and they strive to use it to make search results more meaningful.
In the past, if you searched for “birdhouses” you would get a wide array of images that wasn’t that helpful. Searching for “birdhouses” now offers a lot more context in your image results. There’s a strong chance of finding what you’re looking for on a relevant website with the image search as it is now.
When it comes to image search best practices, John had several recommendations:
- Image placement near the top of the page with text around it.
- Vital image text should be placed alongside the image, not embedded in it.
- The use of high-quality images.
- The use of responsive images with picture element and srcset attribute.
- The use of structured data such as product or recipe markup.
- The use of descriptive file names and clean URL structure.
- Avoid CSS styles and use img tags instead to expedite Google processing.
- The use of lazy-loading with IntersectionObserver which is a new default feature in the latest Chrome version.
John also spoke of some upcoming updates:
- 3D models in search: New 3D models in augmented reality in Google search is coming. It will offer users the option of a 3D model in AR where available.
- High-resolution image opt-in program: Websites that use many high-quality images will have the opportunity to join an opt-in program that will let the images display across Google products.
- Swipe up navigation: Google will make use of accelerated mobile pages (AMPs) within Image search. When the user swipes up, the page is pre-fetched and rendered for instant display.
With mobile-first indexing, Google is using the mobile version of a given page’s content for indexing and ranking. Mobile-first indexing began in 2018 with Googlebot smartphone crawling and rendering over half of the sites.
Google’s team goal is one hundred percent mobile-first rollout. The process requires all components including content, images, data, and metadata to be uniform across desktop and mobile. They are confident they will reach this goal.
They explained that a responsive design would yield better results than keeping a separate mobile version of a site. For more on mobile-first indexing, check out our post on the topic.
Rendering Engine Updates
Crawling the web using a GET request was a simple task in the past when most websites were straight HTML. Today’s websites often have more than HTML which creates a need for Google to crawl the rendered version of a given page. In the past, Google relied on a past version of Chrome (version 41) to render pages.
At this year’s Google I/O event, they announced Google’s rendering engine will be evergreen from this point forward. Googlebot will now be perpetually updated to render using Chrome’s latest version. Google has been testing and monitoring the evergreen update for several months.
They explained that Googlebot’s user agent hasn’t updated yet. To avoid breaking or disrupting anyone’s websites, they’ve decided to plan that for a future time.
Structured Data Markup
Structured data markup can offer solid context when it comes to a machine-readable format. While John recommended the integration of structured data using JSON-LD, using RDFa and microdata is also allowed. The integration of structured data enables Google to provide rich search results.
When you decide to apply structured data:
- Determine the type of rich result you want to achieve for your website in the search.
- Apply the markup at first with a test page.
- Test everything with the Rich Results Test.
Applying structured data can help you achieve rich results in search but there’s no guarantee. It’s important to ensure the markup is error-free, compliant with Google’s guidelines, and the website is the best you can make it.
Search Console Speed Report
The Search Console is now updated with all the important features of the old version moved to the new one. The old version of this vital tool still works for those who count on features that didn’t transfer. Martin announced that there will be a new speed report and you can request beta access to it.
Powered off CrUX data, the new report provides an aggregated view of all website field metrics. The report will give you the ability to identify very specific issues and even review examples of the existing problems.
The report is important for more than search engine ranking. A website’s speed matters to its visitors and impacts bounce and conversion rates. Access to the data in the new Search Console report gives SEOS and web developers a great one-stop place to go to view vital information without accessing PageSpeed tools. The report will also provide historical data on enhancements and potential issues as they grow worse within a prescribed period of time.
When it comes to important SEO trends 2019, you can get free expert marketing advice today from Highpurple. Contact us today for a free audit. We’ll analyze your individual situation and recommend an effective strategy for achieving your marketing goals.
Ever since the advent of the Internet, the consumer base has continued to gain more and more fine-tuned control over purchasing decisions. Gone are the days of sales departments driven by face to face interactions, warm smiles, and firm handshakes. Now customers have the time and resources to carefully investigate their options from the comfort of home, without the necessity of forming interpersonal business relationships along the way.
Marketers know that great copy can make or break an ad. Effective ad copy gets your audience interested and entices them to click, which gets you one step closer to landing a sale. If you’re interested in doubling your click-through rate and boosting your ROI, learning how to write the best ad copy can give you a leg up on your competition. Read on to see how you can master your ad copy strategy so you can see results.
What is ABM?
Account Based Marketing, or ABM, is a major trend in the marketing world, especially for B2B companies. The principle is simply this: when you know that a few key accounts would create a stable base for your company’s revenue through large contracts, you focus on those key accounts. You target marketing toward them, you get the sales teams to build deep relationships with them, and you refine your approach as you continue to establish greater and greater brand loyalty.
They have to land somewhere. When your audience first gets to your website, you want them to take a specific action. That action might be becoming a lead or converting to a customer. Either way, you need a great landing page.
In marketing, you need to identify the core demographic to whom you want to steer your message, but it can be costly and time-consuming to go too deep with different demographic profiles to determine your ideal customers. It is a better use of time and many to create targeted profiles of who your customers are, which can be changed as time goes on and your customers evolve. An ideal demographics that you’re aiming to reach is known as a customer persona, and coming up with a persona can make your marketing efforts easier and more effective by targeting your message at a particular consumer who needs your product or service.
As sales cycles and buyer journey’s lengthen, you have to make sure that you’re with them every step of the way. By getting potential customers and clients into your database early, you can prepare for regular touch points designed to ultimately improve your chances of closing the deal.