Spring Cleaning: How To Find Broken Links On Your Website And Fix Them

If you’re looking to rank in the top spot on search engines for your preferred keyword then you need to have a solid SEO strategy. Search engines like Google crawl your website and take into consideration a wide range of factors before ranking it. Some of these factors are meta-data, the actual copy of the page itself and links to and from your website. There are also some factors you want to ensure search engines don’t find like broken links, wordy copy or a non-responsive website. All of these factors can affect your search engine ranking negatively. For the sake of this blog post, we’re going to be talking about cleaning up the bits you don’t want Google to find, in particular – how to fix broken links.

What are broken links?

In short broken links are links you have created on your website that link to another page that has now been removed. The link could be to another page on your website or an external website. When people click on these broken links they will get a 404 “page could not be found” error. These links can make for a frustrating user experience, which is the main reason why search engines penalise your for it.

How do I find broken links?

Broken links are not as hard to find if you think – even if you have a website with countless pages. All you need to do is crawl your website just like the search engines do. Thankfully there are a lot of tools out there that can help you with this. We would recommend you start out with Google’s Search Console. This is a free tool that you can link to your website. After it’s crawled your website it will show you a few recommendations to get your website into top SEO shape. For your broken links it will show you what page the broken link is on, the anchor text (the text you have to click on), and the link itself.

How do I fix broken links?

Now that you’ve seen all of your broken links on Google Search console, you can now fix them. Firstly, go to the page where your broken link is and find the link. Once you’ve found the link you have a few options. You can either just get rid of the link and replace it with some regular text or you can find another piece of appropriate content to link it to. We’d recommend that you do the latter because more relevant, external links can help your website benefit from a higher search engine ranking.

We hope this has inspired you to do some broken link fixing of your own. If you need any further assistance on how to fix broken links or with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing!

Evergreen Content Ideas for your SME’s Blog

Finding content for your SME blog can be difficult. It can be tricky to nail your ideas down and make sure that your next post is going to capture the right audience. The most successful SME blogs combine both seasonal and evergreen content. Seasonal content consists of articles where the topics are “right now”. For example: “digital marketing trends to kick off 2020”. Whereas evergreen content would be articles that would be searched for no matter what the time of year like “are PPC ads really beneficial to SMEs?“. However, for the sake of this blog post we’re just going to be talking about a few different evergreen content ideas that you can publish on your SMEs blog right now! 

FAQs

If you’ve been running your business for a while, you’ve probably got a few questions that keep cropping up. So instead of internally rolling your eyes ever time you hear them why not make them into a blog post? Not only will this be a useful resource for your customers to refer to, it’s also a great way to capture new ones too. 

Listicles

We’re a big fan of listicles. A listicle is basically any article that is broken down into a quick snappy list. We have loads of listicles on our blog ranging from ten quick and easy online marketing ideas to 12 digital marketing lessons learnt in 2019. The possibilities really are endless with listicles.

Tutorials and Guides

How-to styled blog posts are among some of the most popular on the web. Whatever your business, there is definitely a guide or tutorial to go along with it. For instance, if you run a local coffee shop, a blog post entitled “how to create simple yet impressive coffee art” would do the trick.  

Infographics

Some of our favourite pieces of content are infographics. Not only can you get creative with them and how they look – they are also a great way to convey a large amount of information. The key to a great infographic is to display a mix of interesting and statistics and actionable advice. 

Case Studies

You should always place case studies on your website when you can not just because they make for great evergreen content – they also show what impact your business has on your customers. If you have a customer who you have had particular success with, ask them if they’d like to be featured in a case study. Not only does it make your business look good – it makes your customer look good too. 

Glossaries

We have a series called busting buzzwords which is basically a bank of blog posts that make up a digital marketing glossary. Just take a buzzword that has been floating around your industry and dissect it on your blog. Don’t just explain what the word means – also show how it is used in practical terms in your industry. 

We hope this has inspired you to come up with some of your own evergreen content ideas. If you need any further assistance with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing

Digital Marketing Trends to Watch in 2020

We’re well into the beginning of 2020 and honestly we cannot wait to see what this year has in store for both web design and digital marketing. When technology is constantly changing, so are our consumer habits. Therefore, as marketers we have to change our marketing strategies in order to capture our target audiences’ attention. That’s why we thought we’d put together a list of some of our favourite digital marketing trends that will be rife throughout 2020.  

More personalisation (again)

As the years have gone on personalisation has become more and more important. We’re so used to receiving personalised services wherever we go. A coffee cup with our name scrawled across it, our own bitmojis that looks just like us and of course online stores like Amazon who show us recommended products we actually want. The bottom line is we all want all of our experiences to be tailored to us because then we know we will enjoy them more. A few ways to make your marketing more personal could be to add name tokens into emails, remarket your ads to people who have already engaged in your website, or show recommended products or articles based on your customers interests.  

A helping hand from AI

In order to create a personalised marketing experience, sometimes we need a little helping hand from some AI (artificial intelligence). When we picture AI we usually conjure up images of some kind of sentient being that looks like it should have been in the Matrix films. But in reality AI can be something as simple as a predictive algorithm that collects data regarding user behavior and calculates what this user would most likely enjoy to see on your website in the future. Alternatively AIs could also be chat bots offering support on your website or social media platform. By adopting simple AIs like this you can create a more personalised and supportive user experience. 

Vlogs and live streams

Currently, videos are one of the most powerful marketing tools. You’ve heard of the good old phrase “a picture paints a thousand words” – so how many words do you think a video is worth? Not only are videos easy for your target audience to consume (if done successfully), they also contain many opportunities to boost your SEO strategy and brand awareness marketing. Just make sure your messaging is clear and the end result leaves users feeling some sort of emotion. You can even go a bit further and use channels like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube to stream live to your audience. Users who are subscribed or following you can even receive a notification about your live stream as soon as you start it. 

Omnichannel mindsets

We said that focusing on doing one ting well is always better than doing everything at a mediocre standard. However this year is going to be the year you broaden your digital marketing channels. We don’t necessarily mean you have to go and create a social media account for every channel under the sun – we’re just saying that perhaps you should start thinking about some more consistent digital coverage for your business. For example – do you post similar messages around similar times across your social accounts for maximum impact? Did you do a live stream about current digital marketing trends and then the next day send out a newsletter recapping the session? If not, you’re missing out on cementing your marketing messages into users minds, which can be more powerful than you think. 

Voice search and smart speakers

Alexa. Google. Siri. All of these voice activated personal assistants are quickly becoming household names and for good reason. They’re convenient, quick and can even spark a little joy through our interactions with them. That’s why if you want to keep ahead of the digital marketing curve it’s obvious that you need to optimise your website for voice search. Think about the questions people would actually ask their virtual assistants and cater to those in your meta data and blog articles. 

So are you ready to change up your digital marketing strategy this year? What digital marketing trends are you going to implement this year? If you need any further assistance with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing!

12 Digital Marketing Lessons Learnt in 2019

Digital marketing is something that we think is extremely reactive. It is always changing and growing, therefore we have to learn to keep up with it if we want to succeed at it. So, now that it’s coming to the end of the year, we thought we’d look back on the campaigns we’ve done and reflect on the 12 digital marketing lessons learnt in 2019.

Technologies change – principles don’t

Technology is a fundamental part of digital marketing and unfortunately for us, this means algorithms are always changing. However, the core principles of digital marketing don’t. Even without algorithms, it all comes down to providing the optimum way in which users get information they are looking for. So, as long as you’re providing great content, on the right platform then you’re going to get some traction.

There’s no quick fix

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was the top spot of Google for your ultimate keyword. Digital marketing takes time no matter which channel you’re looking at. Social media, search engines, email marketing – all of these take consistency and experience to get right. You can’t just apply one small fix and expect to see results. Success in digital marketing is a slow process but well worth the wait.

Test, test and test again

When it comes to digital marketing lessons we think that testing is the biggest one. Testing out ideas through A/B testing is key to learning more about your audience and what they want. So, make sure you do your tests across all your digital marketing channels and make notes on what won users over.

Data is your best friend

Bouncing off the above point – data is your best friend. Data is how you’re going to know what is working and what isn’t working. Monitor campaigns closely – did they bring more web page visitors? Did they bring more conversions? If not, can you find out the reason why? Check out exit rates, bounce rates and other behavioral statistics. Whilst they may not paint a full picture, they could give a small indication as to what went wrong.

Don’t get caught up in the latest gimmick

We all love a good trend, but if it’s not beneficial or delivering anything in return it’s not worth it. Basically the bottom line is that parallax scrolling and Facebook prank videos are cool but they’re not the reason customers want to work with you.

Nobody has a crystal ball

Digital marketing is unpredictable. No one knows for certain what is going to happen in the future. So instead of trying to stay one step ahead of the algorithm changes or digital marketing trends, just keep an eye out for changes. This way you know you’re going to be getting your strategy right and not building it around some crystal ball prediction.

Focus on messaging

Messaging is key for any business using digital marketing to gain more exposure and customers. After all, your messaging is what people will take in the most and remember the most. Remember – messaging is not just about words, it’s also about what people can perceive through your website design, email layout or social media branding. So make sure you focus on what you want to portray and get it right.

Social isn’t about followers anymore

We’ve already explained the rise of the micro-influencer on here. Engagement, and not followers, is now the metric all businesses should be chasing.

It’s all about the user

Social media platforms and search engines are always searching for the best ways to provide the user with the best user experience. Therefore, you should take the same stance with your website. Make sure everything is easy for the user to find – popular pages should be clear, CTAs should be prominent and contact forms should be easily accessible. We’ve even listed some of the best ways to improve user experience right here on this blog if you want to find out more.

Content is still king

Long live relevant and useful content! We know content marketing has been around for a while now, but it doesn’t show any signs of disappearing yet. Users spend more and more time digesting content now than ever before, so it makes sense that although it is 2019, people are still chasing that content!

Be human

Of course you can do things to your digital marketing campaigns to appease the search engines and crawl bots. But you should be more concerned about changing your website to please your customers. Again, it’s all about user experience! Make your campaigns human and relatable, not soulless for the SEO purposes.

Have fun!

Having fun and experimenting with digital marketing can produce some pretty great results. So just let your business be itself and have fun, after all, there isn’t another business quite like it.

So those are the top 12 lessons we’ve learnt about digital marketing in 2019. What were your biggest lessons?

As always, if you need any further assistance with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing!

Are PPC Ads Really Beneficial To SMEs?

One question that comes up more often than not when talking about online advertising is: are PPC ads really going to benefit my small business? First of all, PPC ads like Google AdWords, aren’t a one size fits all solution. There are many factors you should consider before investing a decent amount of your advertising budget in online ads. 

What are your reasons for using PPC ads?

Before you even start to consider using PPC ads you need to ask yourself – what is my end goal? What do I want to achieve from creating and publishing these ads? If this goal is measurable like, you want more sales on your website, more enquiries or more traffic than go for it. However, if you’re looking for ways for customers to become brand advocates, then this isn’t the way to go. 

Will PPC ads be able to reach your target audience? 

Once you’ve thought about your goal, you need to think about where your audience are. Depending on your business, not all target audiences are going to be attainable on PPC platforms. For example, if you run a online boutique you’d probably capture more shoppers by advertising on Google’s shop network – not their search network. Likewise if you’re a business consultant, you’d probably reach more potential clients on Google’s search network than their shopping one. If you don’t think you’re business will fit into any of these networks, it’s probably best to start thinking about some other advertising opportunities. 

Are you thinking about CTAs and your sales funnel?

Similarly to your reasons and goals, you need to think about CTAs (call-to-actions) and your sales funnel. What is going to make potential customers buy from your website or get in touch with you? You have to coerce them into taking these action through your PPC ads. If you’re using a display ad, include a button that says “shop now” or “enquire now”. If you’re using a search ad, include your SMEs phone number in the ad copy. There are many things you can do – however if you don’t highlight CTAs then unfortunately your venture into PPC ads will be a waste of time. 

Do your PPC ads have a positive return on investment?

The bottom line with all advertising is – do you have a positive return on investment? Basically after you calculate how much money you made from advertising minus the cost of advertising were you making money? If the answer is no, then you probably need to rethink your strategy. 

As you’ve read – there is no clear answer whether or not PPC ads can be beneficial to your SME. But now you’ve considered a few of the most vital points around PPC campaigns, will you give them a chance? However, of course, remember that these are just general tips and that how you should utilise and market your business is very dependent on what industry you are in as well as your target audience.

As always, if you need any further assistance with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing!

 

Ten Quick and Easy Online Marketing Ideas For SMEs

When you run an SME, quite often you can find yourself strapped for resources and time. After juggling being the founder, accountant, marketer and sales rep for your business it’s no wonder that sometimes things to fall into the cracks. That’s why you need to adopt strategies for your business that not only work but are efficient on time too. We know it’s not always easy coming up with new online marketing ideas that are not only quick and easy to execute but also provide a positive return on investment. That’s why we’ve created a list of our top ten quick and easy marketing ideas specifically designed for SMEs. All of them take a matter of minutes to carry out, require very little digital marketing knowledge and can help you reach those extra customers you’ve been looking for. 

1. Research your successful keywords

You’re probably already ranking well for a handful of keywords, so why not start off by giving yourself a little confidence boost? All you have to do is sign up to activate Google’s search console. Then it’s simply explained step-by-step within the tool itself.

2. Dig into your not so successful keywords

Now that you’ve seen what you’ve done well – take a look at where you can improve. You can use Google’s search console for this as well. Start with the keywords where you are ranking anywhere between 11 and 25 then see if you can improve on your ranking. Do this by adding new content around these keywords or optimising meta-data.

3. Run your website through a speed test

Search engines use the speed of your website as a determining ranking factor. Why not see how your website’s doing? Run your homepage URL through Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool. Not only will this tell you how fast your website is – it will also tell you what you can do to improve your website’s speed.

4. Create a subscribe or sign-up landing page

Have a mailing list? Make sure to create a dedicated landing page where users can sign up simply and easily. Add it to a prominent space in your navigation bar for optimum exposure.

5. Check out your back links

Backlinks are another determining factor when it comes to how search engines rank your website. The more reputable website that link to your website the better. You can check out your own metrics on Moz.

6. Clean up your own links

When you have links on your website that don’t link to anything search engines will rank you down. Do yourself a favour and crawl your website for broken links. You can use tools for this like Screaming Frog’s SEO Spider. You can download a free version. Once you’ve identified these links either update them with new links or remove them.

7. Try business listings

We wrote a whole article about local business listings and whether they can work for your business or not. Check that out first and then decide to add your SME to Google, Bing, Yelp and more.

8. Create a blog

This one’s pretty obvious and one of the most fun. Create a blog on your website where you answer common problems some of your customers may have. Not only is this helpful – but you could also capture some new customers who are searching for solutions to these common problems online. They get their answer and you get more traffic.

9. Use multimedia

Social media platforms that use video and becoming more and more popular by the day. Think about YouTube, TikTok and IG TV. Try your hand at some of these channels by making a video telling your SMEs story. It’s guaranteed to garner some attention.

10. Research, research, research

Probably not one of the quickest on our list but you can never go wrong with a bit of research. We even created a list of some of our favourite digital marketing resources to learn from. Happy reading!

That pretty much sums up our simplest and easiest online marketing ideas for SMEs. However, of course, remember that these are just general tips and that how you should utilise and market your business is very dependent on what industry you are in as well as your target audience.

As always, if you need any further assistance with any website or online marketing projects then please don’t hesitate to contact us right here on our website. Until then, happy marketing!