Posts Categorized: SEO

Black hat SEO tactics that are killing your search rankings

Firstly, what do I mean by ‘black hat’? These are search engine optimisation techniques used to get higher search rankings in an unethical manner. These practices might provide short-term gains in terms of rankings, but when you’re caught using such spammy techniques you’ll be penalised (and even banned) by search engines. Some companies may be prone to using these practices because they’re impatient and don’t see immediate results from their ‘white hat’ SEO  techniques. Remember, SEO is a marathon and not a sprint.

To avoid getting penalised by search engines, we have listed a few black hat tactics that you should be aware of.

Examples of black hat seo tactics:

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Increasing the visibility of your construction product website in search engines

I was kindly asked to present at the RIBA Insight Consultancy Day for its members, mainly product manufacturers and suppliers. Over 100 delegates attended the day which saw a range of topics presented and discussed including ‘BIM take up amongst professional services’ and ‘what do Architects want from product CPD’s’ and an ever popular topic ‘Adding Social Media to your Construction Marketing Mix’ presented by Paul Wilkinson.

Finally my presentation on increasing the visibility of construction product websites in search engines and ensuring they are found by specifiers, architects, engineers and designers when they are looking for new products, services or businesses for a particular project or problem. The presentation can be viewed below. Feel free to leave any comments or questions in the comments section below.Read More

How to Create Construction Content Using Search and Google Analytics

So you have a blog. What do you write about? How do you intend to make sure that the content on your blog is relevant to your website visitors and your prospects? Online content is the most important part of any website when it comes to converting visitors into leads. If your content is valuable and usable then it is more likely that the visitor will subscribe, download, share or register in order to get more valuable content from you. If your content is poor, don’t expect visitor growth, increase in leads or conversions from your website.

I am going to share with you a simple technique which I have been using for a while now to help kick start a content strategy for construction product manufacturers to help them produce content which is relevant and useful for their prospects and customers. This technique may only apply to websites which have satisfactory levels of search optimisation applied and are already acquiring a good level of traffic from search engines. Why? Put it simply, you will be using search to drive content to drive search.

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Calculating your website’s ‘share of search’ and prioritising your SEO

A common request we get from prospects/clients is “I want my building product website to be ranked on page 1 or at the top of Google for these search terms” and pulls out a piece of paper with 20 or so search phrases scribbled on it. My reply would always be “How do you know they are the search terms or keywords your prospects use?”

To help clients understand the impact of search engines on website performance, search traffic generation and implementing a search engine optimisation strategy we need to understand where they are now by benchmarking. I wrote in a previous post about the importance of benchmarking to help identify where improvements can be made and where additional efforts are required through controlled experiments (small changes but made often).

The benchmarking process involves gathering data from various analytical sources to help identify:

  • What are my top 20 non-branded search terms? (non-branded = excluding company name and this is where your SEO should be focused)
  • Where is my website currently ranking in Google for those non-branded search terms?
  • How many visits have been generated to the website from those non-branded 20 search terms over a 6 month period?
  • Approximately how many ‘exact’ searches are made in Google for those top non-branded 20 search terms over a 6 month period?
  • What is my % share?
  • Which search terms should I prioritise and optimise? (Note: This is the outcome, actions!)Read More

What is link building and how can I build more links to my website?

Construction marketers know that content is king, but also that it does not work alone. Search Engine Optimisation and building quality inbound links is vital for the spread of good content. Building links from other quality and authoritative websites to your website helps to increase the authority and importance of your website and thus has a great impact on your search engine rankings. Quality always reigns over quantity so a website with 50,000 poor quality links will rank lower and degrade the quality of the site than a website with 100 good quality links. Search engine rankings are affected by the quality of the content on your website as well as how many links it has from authoritative sites. Having links from sites that Google trusts, tells it that your website contains some useful and important content. However building these quality links is not a quick and easy process. It can be time consuming and can take some effort researching for quality sites to link from but the results are worth it because according to search engines, the more quality links you have to your website, the more visible your website will be within search engines resulting in more traffic to your website for you to then convert into leads.

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Google Expands Site Links

Yesterday, Google changed the way it displays and formats site links for any website by expanding each link to show more content within the site. Previously, a website listing would appear in the search results page and you would see 8 listings (2 columns with 4 links in each column) like this:

old sitelinksRead More

Google Plus: what makes it different from other social networking sites?

Since its release over 3 weeks ago Google plus has seen tremendous growth, with nearly over 20 million users already. People who are even remotely interested in search, social media and marketing have probably been spending a lot of time figuring out how best to use this new platform. This growth will probably continue once Google+ becomes available to everyone (it’s still in beta) and Google starts marketing the social network through its other widely used, and trusted, channels such as YouTube and Blogger.

Below is a graph to illustrate the tremendous growth of the platform compared to Twitter and Facebook. Yes, we could say the growth of Google+ can also be attributed to the fact that it was largely promoted and shared through these other 2 platforms which could have contributed to it’s rapid adoption but it’s still a massive difference.


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Why Marketers must also think about User Experience when optimising their construction websites

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is changing. Google recently changed the way it ranks and displays quality individual web pages within its results. Gone are the days where webmasters and marketers can solely rely on inserting keywords into page titles, descriptions, URL’s, headlines and the body copy in order to improve a websites optimisation. Google is getting cleverer and its getting cleverer faster. There were 500 changes and tests made to the Google algorithm in 2010 which just goes to show that SEO is no longer an obsolete task, its a constant moving living breathing machine. Marketers must pay attention or risk losing traffic and also a complete vanish of their websites in search engines.

Marketers must also now think about the overall ‘user experience’ of the site and MUST take into consideration various metrics such as Bounce Rate, Time on Site/Page, Browser Rate, Click through rate from search listings and strong social signals such as  Twitter shares and Facebook Likes. Most of your websites or website uses Google Analytics so therefore Google uses the data from your Google Analytics profile to get a better picture of how your website performs and how people interact with your site.

  • What level of activity does this site get?
  • How long to people stick around on this site?
  • How long do people stick around on this page?
  • How many times has this page been shared on Twitter or LinkedIn?
  • Does this website generate conversions or goals?
  • What do people type into Google to get to this site and then go onto complete a task?

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6 tips for optimising your construction product pages

Optimising your website and web pages for search engines is crucial in order to raise visibility and make it easy for your customers and prospects to find detailed information on your products or applications. It is now common practice that most Architects, Specifiers and Engineers turn to the web when they require specific product information, service offerings or details for an actual business.

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Don’t just focus solely on rankings, focus on quality and conversions

When developing an SEO (search engine opimisation) strategy it is quite easy to focus all of your efforts solely on improving rankings alone. “I want to be #1 or #2 and that is it!”

Marketers want their websites to rank either #1 or #2 for relevant search terms to their business and oust their competition from the dizzy heights of being listed number one in Google, but with an improvement in rankings also comes additional traffic.

Why do you want to add more traffic to the top of the funnel when your website can’t convert the hundred or so visitors it currently attracts?

If your current website is failing to convert any of its traffic into some sort of measurable result (i.e. download, subscription, registration, request) then your website needs fixing first before you add any more traffic top the top of the funnel. Identify poor performing pages with high exit rates and bounce rates, test and refine the content and the design. Always ensure your pages have clear calls to action pointing visitors towards completing those goals. Read More