AdWords Gets a Makeover

Image result for google adsGoogle Ads, or AdWords, has always had frequent product updates, with more automated features, allowing us to have similar results with less manual work. Along with Google’s recent rebranding from AdWords to Google Ads, they also announced the arrival of a new automated campaign type for small businesses called Smart Campaigns. It can produce significantly better results, with businesses being able to choose from varying levels of automation. Smart Campaigns will start automating ads and landing page generation based on data from Google My Business (GMB), as well as other user-selected images. So what needs to be done by the user? Budgets, target location, and language can be managed by the advertiser, but realistically they won’t change after a campaign is set up.

In May 2015, Universal App campaigns helped advertisers get more installs of their app or drive in-app conversions. It is one of the first fully automated campaign type in Google Ads. Google manages bidding, targeting and creatives and works to achieve the maximum results for the desired goal within the budget set by the advertiser. For this, advertisers just need to select a daily budget, a target cost per result and location and language targets. Google also asks for a few ad text ideas as well as some optional images, videos, and HTML5 assets to give their ad-generation system some ideas for a starting point, and the system does the rest!

There are seven automated bidding strategies from Google that help advertisers reach a variety of business goals with minimal work. Three of these are based on a mechanism called Smart Bidding, where Google uses machine learning to predict which clicks are most likely to drive conversions and conversion value. For this, automatic bidding should not be considered fully automated, as targets should be adjusted for factors that its automation doesn’t consider. How do they help? They remove the need for additional calculations that advertisers used to do manually. But because targets can change based on factors that Google has no insight into, these automated bid systems will perform best when they’re managed by people who are aware of what is best for the business.

For advertisers with large sites, Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) offer an automated solution that targets ads to relevant queries, with relevant ads and the right landing page. The advertiser can choose whether to include all the pages from their site that are in the Google index or just pages in a feed, and Google then automatically targets the ads and shows the ads with an automatic headline.

There are many other automations, with the new automations getting the word “Smart” in front of them, like Smart Campaigns or Smart Bidding. Today, July 10, Google will host Google Marketing Live, the annual launch for new ads and analytics products, so be on the watch for some up and coming technology!

SEO Tips for 2018!

The SEO landscape is ever changing, with new tips and tricks given to help improve your company’s standing. The one thing that has always been constant has been links, with companies trying to accumulate as many links as possible.

However, links might not be helping your site’s ranking or visibility too much. Google’s John Mueller said, “SEOs often focus on links too much, it doesn’t always help their sites in the long run or is probably not the most efficient thing to do to promote a website.”

Here are some things you could do instead of collecting links for your company:

Create quality video content. Fifty-five percent of all Google searches bring up videos in the results. Video content is quickly becoming more and more popular, set to make more than 80% of web traffic by 2021. People aren’t just watching more videos, Google is prioritizing pages with videos embedded in them.

Spend more time on on-page optimization. Although keywords and keyword density worked well in the past, as AI becomes more widely adopted, voice search is gaining in traction. So instead of focusing on just words, focus on keywords and phrases the way that people say them. These long tail keywords were not widely accepted in the past, but now sites that are preparing to be voice search friendly are getting ahead.

Invest in technical SEO. Usually the site’s performance and usability are directly proportional with the number of links you have. Site speed is one of the most important factors of SEO. More than half of all web users abandon a site that does not load in at least three seconds. The content of the page does not matter if the page loads slowly. Google also prioritizes websites that are secure, and from next month onwards, all sites that are HTTP only will be marked as not secure. Also, keep in mind that more browsing is done than desktops, so make sure your site is optimized for mobiles with AMP pages that Google gives points to. 

All in all, links still matter, but not if you’re linking to a thin site with a slow load that has shallow content and multiple errors. Instead of focusing all your time looking for links, make sure your content and website are optimized and ready for these changes.

For more information, click here.

How Artificial Intelligence is Changing SEO in 2018

Artificial Intelligence has been shaping the Internet for years now, allowing computers to run complicated programs and search through data, display it, and report analytics about it. Here are some ways in the past year it’s been shaping the future of SEO:

  • SEO is getting smarter by learning from each iteration, meaning it is now harder for companies to put out content that is not relevant to their users and trick users in order to be at the top of the results page.
  • The content on the page can now be automated, with companies choosing what order to have a particular user view their content. This creates new marketing and targeting opportunities.
  • AI allows companies to display ads to their webpages, getting paid without having to charge the user anything. This allows companies to achieve greater revenue than just the site alone.
  • Different versions of a landing page can now be viewed with different headlines. This can be helpful to see which version is converting better
  • AI can create quizzes that pop up on your website so the user can tell you more about them

New Website? No problem!

Having a search engine optimized website could be the difference from getting the traffic you want or staying invisible. SEO traffic takes up 70% of a company’s overall traffic, so it needs to be taken very seriously. This means a strong SEO foundation needs to be built from day one. Even if you don’t know anything about SEO, it is very easy to learn. Here are a couple tips to build a strong foundation for your website:

  • Narrow your niche: Determine who is going to view your website. The more you narrow down and define your niche, the easier it will be to cater to their needs and optimize your site. Here are a couple questions you could ask yourself:
    • Who is your ideal customer?
    • What do they do for a living?
    • What gender and age are they?
    • Where do they live?
    • What’s their favorite way to receive information?
    • What buzzwords are used often?
    • Who else are they following?
      Knowing your potential audience helps a website get popular quickly, as long as you focus on catering to your niche and your niche only.
  • Prioritize mobile: Google has switched over to mobile-first indexing, as about 60% of searches are carried out on mobile devices. This means that the mobile versions of websites are being indexed before desktop versions.
  • Make sure your website is fast: Google announced a new ranking algorithm specifically for mobile search known as the “speed update”, meaning mobile sites should be given the same treatment as desktop sites. Statistics show that if a website takes more than 3 seconds to load, 40% of visitors will leave your website and 80% of those visitors won’t return. How can you improve mobile pages’ loading speed?
    • Use a browser cache
    • Compress all images
    • Use a content delivery network (CDN), which reduces latency and makes your website load up to three times faster
  • Have a Plan for Content: Makes sure your content is aligned with your business objectives in a organized manner
  • Optimize On-Page SEO: Create high-quality content that uses keywords that matches your user’s intent
  • Set up Google Analytics: ensures you are collecting data from the beginning in order to see who is viewing your page, how they found it, and the number of sessions, as well as who is linking to your page and what content is being linked the post
  • Create a Sitemap: Sitemaps help your site more visible to search engines and provides users with more accurate search results. It also helps your site get indexed and ranked, with the highest rankings getting the most organic traffic.