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What We Can Learn About SEO From Game Of Thrones

What do you know about SEO?

you know nothing jon snow

 

There may be no new episode to look forward to, the Night’s Watch may be serving no real purpose, and we may never know what is West of Westeros… but for now we’ll keep talking about Game of Thrones. We might not be able to provide answers to any of the questions the end of Season 8 left us with, but what we can do is help answer your SEO questions. For those of you who are new to SEO and love Game of Thrones, we took 6 SEO Concepts, one for each Kingdom, and explained them in terms of Game of Thrones. **WARNING** Spoilers ahead…

 

 

  1. Backlinks

When a website has a link pointing to another website, that is what is known as a backlink. Backlinks work like endorsements or votes for your website to help them appear more prominently on SERP’s. The more quality endorsements you have pointing to your website, the more likely your website is to show up in Google’s search results for your desired keywords. The more relevant the linking website is to your industry the better, and the more authoritative the site the more power the endorsement is. This can be thought of as all the alliances Daenerys formed on her way to claim the Iron Throne. The more people she had on her side, the more votes she had in favor of her claiming the Iron Throne.

Not all links have equal weight. Though Daenerys had thousands of Dothraki on her side, they weren’t necessarily a more powerful ally than Tyrion was when he joined Daenerys. While Tyrion was just one person and the Dothraki, Tyrion’s strategic brain and family history made his vouch for Daenerys much more powerful than the Dothraki endorsement. Similarly, some websites that are more credible within your industry will have a more powerful link than those websites that are smaller and don’t have as much relevance within the industry. Many allies can be great, but a few strategic allies can take you even farther. So ultimately, while all endorsements can be beneficial, having stronger endorsements from more authoritative and credible websites within the industry will take you farther than lots of “votes” from players that are irrelevant.

 

tyrion

 

 

     2. Internal Links

Every successful Army in Westeros has a strong and clear structure. This is vital in order to assign authority to the different ranks within an army, and to make sure all soldiers know exactly who they are reporting to. Without structure within the army, the soldier wouldn’t know who to receive their responsibilities from, who to follow into battle, or even who they are serving in the first place. Likewise, it is just as important to have a strong internal structure on your website.

Internal Linking has a few different advantages. They can make it easier for your website visitors to find what they are looking for and easily manoeuvre through your pages. It is also a way of showing Google that a certain page is important, and helps the search engine decide which pages to rank. If a page takes numerous clicks to find, Google will see this as less important. This is where the hierarchy coming in, with one of these pages resembling a foot soldier. Show the search engine who are your generals with numerous, clear internal linkings with descriptive and relevant anchor text.

A strong internal structure makes for happy clients (and happy soldiers).

dany

 

 

 

       3. Be an Industry Leader

When Jon Snow goes to join the Night’s Watch, he meets Samwell, or Sam, Tarly. Compared to the other warriors, Sam is neither the bravest or the most skilled. While in the assets category Sam may fall behind, what he lacks in skill he makes up in intelligence and knowledge. In the end, it is Sam’s insightfulness that gives the Night’s Watch an edge in their battles. In that sense, just because Sam didn’t have the same level of assets that the more skilled warriors had, that didn’t mean he wasn’t able to excel from a different angle.

 

From an SEO perspective, regularly uploading good quality, industry relevant content is a big plus on Google’s end. The search engines value when you provide something of value to your users, and this can be done in the form of blogs, whitesheets, articles, PDFs etc. You have an an opportunity to be a leader in your industry by providing this value if you are in a position to do so. These pieces have numerous other advantages, such as driving traffic to your site or garnering leads if you a downloadable element. Utilise your knowledge and get once step ahead of your competitors!

 

sam

 

 

     4. Results don’t happen overnight

Arya Stark is known for her swordsmanship and dedication to the art. Throughout the series, Arya spent a lot of her time sword training. However, she didn’t master the skill automatically. She started off slowly, with Syrio having her improve her agility by chasing cats. With SEO, you will see that the results of your work will also not show immediately. The benefits of SEO cannot be seen overnight. Just because you won’t see the results of your work immediately, you shouldn’t stop. Like Arya, you must use SEO techniques to build up your ranking, and be patient while you wait for the outcome.

 

arya

 

 

    5. Maintain Results

Once you finally reach the top of the rankings, you may think that your website is fully optimized and you don’t need to focus on SEO anymore. However, if you do this, you risk losing your ranking over time. In order to stay at that top ranking, you must continue working and adapting to industry updates to maintain the level that your website is at. As the Google algorithm changes, you must continue to upskill and adapt accordingly. For this point, Arya once again proves to be a perfect example. From season one when Arya trained with Syrio Forel, up until the moment  when she killed the Night King in season eight, Arya never stopped upskilling and practicing. If Arya had stopped training, she wouldn’t have been able to maintain the level of skill she had achieved. With SEO, you should implement the same mentality. Never rest on your laurels, as with SEO, there is ALWAYS work to do!

 

 

 

      6. The Importance of Tracking

Somebody once said “use statistics as a drunk man uses lamp-posts — for support rather than for illumination.”. For SEO, there are few different elements you can track on Google Analytics; organic traffic, sales from organic visitors, improve the ranking of particular keywords etc. These metrics all depend on what your objectives are. Assign desired results and use Google Analytics to measure your performance every two weeks, monthly or quarterly; depending on the objective. These can help keep you on track and fully aware of where you are and what needs to be done. If Daenerys didn’t have a council of people close to her, who were always brutally honest, she would have also been lost. Analytics do not lie, but as soon as Daenerys started  ignoring the advice of her council, she started derailing and making questionable decisions. If you were to ignore what your analytics were telling you, then you could end up spiralling down the wrong path. With SEO, remember: Do not be like Daenerys — Listen to your advisors (or web analytics).

 

 

 

 

      7 (Bonus Kingdom) . 404 Pages and Redirects

Seen as The North is now an Independent Kingdom, lets take a look at one extra concept and relate it to the Starks. Think back to when Robb Stark entrusted Theon Greyjoy to go back to the Iron Islands. Remember when Theon decided to go attack Winterfell instead? Well the feeling of betrayal that Robb Stark felt is what your customers feel when they land on a broken link. While attacking Winterfell and betraying those close to you is not exactly the same as landing on a 404 page, neither is a desirable outcome for your customer. When removing a page on your website, or indeed undergoing a site merger, you must be wary of the URLs that will be considered obsolete. These URLs may exist through external linking, on social media, be bookmarked or even part of the internal linking structure. Users do not like landing on a broken page, and when something is not user friendly, Google will penalise you. This is why it is vital to set up 301 redirects, or even have a helpful 404 page.

Even though Theon initially betrayed the Starks, he later returned to redeem himself by providing them with the help that they needed. In this way, Theon resembles a redirected page. If your customer happens to click on a link that lands them on a page that no longer exists, having a redirect will guide that person to the correct page that they are looking for. Whilst having too many redirects is not ideal as they can slow down your site, in many situations they are a necessary evil to your SEO strategy.

 

theon

 

We know we weren’t able to provide you with the Season 8 answers that we were all looking for, but hopefully some of your SEO questions have been answered. We hope you use this information to claim your right to the Iron Throne top position on Google’s search results!

 

 

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How to Optimize your Twitter Practices in 5 steps

How to Optimize your Twitter Practices in 5 steps:

Today, Twitter averages about 321 million monthly active users, with 42% of those users sending hundreds of millions of tweets every day. For small businesses, Twitter can serve as a helpful promotional tool. With over 300 million monthly active users, Twitter allows businesses to reach and connect with new audiences. Twitter offers small businesses the opportunity to grow their company through effective communication with customers and fans. If your brand is not already on Twitter, or if you are not familiar with the platform, it can be confusing to navigate. We’ve outlined five steps to help you fully optimize your brand’s Twitter profile.

 

 

twitter

 

  1. Engage in Conversation

With Twitter, it is best to focus on building relationships rather than just pushing your products or services. Encourage interaction with your followers by answering their questions, offering industry relevant advice, share interesting content, and even asking your own questions for your followers to answer.

Twitter also serves as a good platform for customer service. Twitter’s platform is very conversational, meaning that handling customer service issues on the platform can be done with a more personal touch. In addition to this, the transparency of these interactions can help to create deeper relationships and better trust.

 

     2. Promote Your Twitter Profile on all Your Channels

Sharing your content across all your social media channels broadens your reach and allows you to connect with a wider audience of people. Some people may regularly check your website or Facebook page, but have no idea that you also have a Twitter profile for your brand. By promoting your Twitter profile on your website and other social media platforms, customers who may not follow you on Twitter will be aware that you do have valuable content on Twitter. Additionally, if your Twitter following is not as great as your followings on other platforms, promoting your Twitter on your more popular accounts will be beneficial in increasing your Twitter following.

 

3. Make Your Profile Representative of Your Brand

Your Twitter profile is what separates you from your competitors. Incorporating your brand throughout your Twitter profile gives your profile a unique identity. You can incorporate your brand logo, designs, colors and other relevant visuals to make your profile stand out while looking cohesive.

Use your logo as your profile picture as it is one of the quickest ways for customers to identify your brand. Your bio should also describe your business, as it appears in Twitter and Google search results. Choose a meaningful profile banner, possibly featuring a new product or drawing attention to a special promotion. Create a unique handle, or username, to help your customers easily identify you. Ideally, your handle should not change too much across social media platforms. You also want to make sure that your business name is clear on your profile. Finally, keep a pinned tweet that highlights your current news, promotion, or campaign so that visitors to your profile will see it immediately.

 

4. Build Your Credibility

By offering tips or solutions with your followers, you can showcase your expertise and increase your brand’s credibility. Share your recent work on your Twitter profile so that your followers know that your brand is keeping active and staying relevant. Interacting with other Industry professionals or engaging in industry related discussions shows your followers that you are an expert in your field.

 

5. Fill Your Timeline with Relevant Content

Make sure to follow people who are relevant to your business. By doing so, you can keep up with news from industry experts, competitors, and customers. This helps you to continue to build relationships and research your market. This also ensures that your Twitter timeline is filled with content that is interesting and related to your industry, instead of clogging your timeline with irrelevant content. Following hashtags is also important as hashtags increase exposure from more than just your usual audience. For example, if you hashtag your post with a trending hashtag, anyone on Twitter who searches that hashtag will be able to find your Tweet. This not only allows more people to find you, but it also allows you to discover new profiles, articles, and other relevant content tagged with that particular hashtag.

 

Whether you are starting a new company, or your brand is just not on Twitter yet, exploring Twitter as a marketing tool can be very useful. When used correctly, Twitter can help your business with generating leads and sales, increasing brand awareness, and building community. We hope these tips will help you to take advantage of all that the platform has to offer!

Want more insights like this? See how we can help your business with Social Media Marketing by calling us today on 01 2885118.

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What You Missed at The Ecommerce Expo 2019

This year the Ecommerce Expo returned to Croke Park as an even bigger event than the years previous. With over 25 exhibitors and 10 incredible speakers throughout the day, it’s hard to pick out just one highlight from the event. Attendees had the opportunity to learn exclusive industry tips from the big players like Facebook and Google, as well as receive first hand advice from successful startups. From SEO strategies to sustainable business methods, the Ecommerce Expo covered important need-to-know content for business owners. If you weren’t able to attend the expo, there’s no need to stress about what you missed because we’ve picked out 6 tips from the day with takeaways from some of our amazing speakers to share with you.

 

    1. Leverage Google Machine Learning to Simplify and Grow

The “Age of Assistance” means that customers are getting more curious, demanding, and impatient than ever before. It’s really hard for companies to predict what a user will do, and that’s where machine learning plays a part. Google Ads machine learning will help to automatically optimize your account by predicting user behavior based on browsing history, context, and user data. There are 4 main ways to simplify & grow with Google ads machine learning: targeting, creatives, bidding, and attribution.

 

     2.  Remember Sustainable Business Models

As the subject of responsible shopping and its impact on the future of the environment grows in recognition, the more important it is to people to support sustainable forms of business. Next to oil, retail is the second dirtiest industry in the world. Shoppers can change this. 86% of consumers want to support companies who make a stand for social issues. 87% of millennials attributed sustainability as something they would be willing to pay more for. With that in mind, a more sustainable business model can help your brand help your customers to reduce the shopping industry’s carbon footprint.

 

    3. Use AR in your eCommerce Business when Applicable

75% of consumers expect online retailers to have AR. In 2016, return costs for UK retail amounted to £60 billion. In the future, AR will be an indispensable tool for online retailers. The objective of eCommerce is to provide customers with a convenient alternative to shopping in stores. However, the potential of having to go through the hassle of returns will often deter potential customer sales. AR serves as a solution to this problem by further enhancing customer experience and convenience of online shopping. AR allows customers to visualize and test out your products before purchasing, increasing their willingness to purchase and decreasing potential sale losses.

 

    4. Combine SEO & PPC Practices to Increase Profit

Using SEO, you can optimize your brand’s website to increase organic traffic through higher rankings in a search engine. A good SEO strategy is necessary for customers to find you online. PPC practices allow you to rank higher in paid results at the top of the page in a search. This is important because if your brand doesn’t rank highly on the page, then a competitor’s brand will, which will result in lost sales for you. While each strategy is important on its own, combining both will allow you to have a stronger digital strategy, giving you the optimal online presence.

 

   5. Take Facebook Ads to the Next Level

Use ads manager for more advanced advertising. Ads Manager will allow you to see analytics for your campaigns so you can check their progress and make adjustments if necessary. By installing the Facebook pixel on your website, you can track if users take certain actions on your website after clicking on your Facebook campaign. This information can help you to further optimize your campaigns. When making new campaigns, creating custom audiences can serve as advantageous for your business. Not only will creating a custom audience help you to tailor your campaign to the most relevant users, but it will also allow you to retarget visitors who have visited your profile in the past. Additionally, you can use Lookalike audiences to reach new customers and further grow your brand’s reach.

 

  6. Create a World-Class Customer Experience from Day Zero

The rate of change today is rapid, and will continue to increase exponentially in the future. Therefore, it is important to provide your customers with a world-class experience from the beginning. To do this, you must be responsive on all your platforms. If customers cannot reach you, they will not bother doing business with you. Having top quality products with a clear warranty and consistent delivery time helps to create transparency and trust between you and your customer. A distinguished logo, user-friendly website, and localized content helps your brand to appeal to customers from across the world, in turn, broadening your audience reach. Keeping your company up to date and continuing to make bold choices will help to distinguish your business from others. Ultimately, in order for your brand to grow, it’s important to offer a big company type of service even as a startup.

 

We hope these tips from some of the best experts in the industry will help you and your business to thrive. Make sure to check our updates about the Ecommerce Expo so you don’t miss out on what’s in store for next year!

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