Use the data you collect from customers to help customers

I was poking around a clothing company site this morning, checking out a few cool looking items, but I didn’t buy anything. Soon after, I received an email “Exclusive 10% off for you” with an image of one of the products I looked at and a coupon to get that item at a special discount. Retargeting once felt creepy, but now we’re used to the companies we do business with knowing a ton about us and using that information to market to us.


An anecdote and a statistical analysis walk into a bar

The bar is dark and dingy, well-used, with a bit of danger in the air. The sort of bar that wouldn’t be out of place in a Clint Eastwood movie.

The anecdote has been through a lot. There’s the drama with his family, sure, but also the fight he had with his boss today. He needs this job, what with the payments coming due on the house, not to mention his gambling debts…

A guy walks up to the anecdote and taps him on the shoulder. A bad move at any time, but today, it’s particularly ill-advised. Putting down his beer, the anecdote turns, in a rage, about to punch the stranger in the face.

At the last moment, fist poised to strike out, the anecdote stops. This stranger–he seems somehow familiar. Could it be? Is it his long-lost brother?

The valid statistical analysis, the one that’s correct, useful but hard to believe if you haven’t been trained in statistics? He’s in the corner, being ignored.

The most effective statisticians are the ones who aren’t afraid to tell a story. Because anecdotes are the way we navigate the world.

       


"The Strategy Book" Bridges the Gap Between Thinking and Taking Action

Mini book read. New email subscribers will receive it as part of the weekly digest. Say “strategy” to anyone and their eyes glaze over. It’s not that we don’t understand the value of strategic thinking, we do. But there’s never enough time to do a proper job of it. Market pressure seems to override a desire to learn more about the problem—or focus on the right one—the context, and the players. We often don’t know enough even about our own business. Action is how we show results, we reason. Yet, we’d still want to focus on the right actions, making…


Google AdWords a Popular Form of Pay Per Click Advertising

Pay Per Click Perth

“Pay Per Click” is typically an advertising system which is quite effortless to decipher and master. Daily nearly three hundred million searches are carried out on the Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. These outcomes eighty percent of online traffic. So, to reach the maximal number of prospective customers, it is highly imperative to put your business website on all of these major search engines. Nonetheless, so that people see and click your site more often, it needs to be viewed at the top of the search list. If your website ranks lower, there is a less chance for it to be clicked, since net visitors tend to reach up to the 3rd page of Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. “Pay Per Click” advertising is a paid service where the sponsor pays only when someone clicks on his ad, online paid search ads that are displayed on search engines.

Pay Per Click Perth allows you to target keywords that are commonly searched or ones that relate to your niche, & the highest bidder attains the highest ranking. This advertising is unique since you don’t need to pay anything in advance, and you pay after someone clicks your link.

Is Google AdWords Different From PPC?

Google AdWords is a system wherein to promote a business the advertiser bids on specific keywords so that clickable ads display on Google’s search results. The advertiser pays for every click that occurs. In turn, Google earns money from every search conducted on its search engine.

Google AdWords is a leading internet based marketing and advertising system today, which is the favourite of businesses, who are looking to promote their products & services online for a higher return on investment. So, said, Google AdWords is a form of pay per click advertising offered by Google that allows the advertiser to display their website or Ads on Google search results pages (SERPs) and pay when a visitor clicks on his ads.

It is a simple, user-friendly advertising platform and can even be used by people, who are amateurs or have little knowledge about Google AdWords management Perth and augment their digital marketing campaigns.

Google AdWords the Front Runner

Google’s AdWords leads from the front as one of the most popular PPC management programs and constitutes nearly ninety percent of PPC ad dollars. Both veterans and novices find it to be the most effective alternative because of the large percentage of online traffic on Google. Anyway, Google Adwords, Perth is turning very competitive and costly day by day. Multiple competing networks are giving it a tough ride and are providing attractive traffic to advertisers seeking a larger piece of Google’s pie. Nonetheless, Google AdWords is still the most popular platform and cost-effective a well.

How Google AdWords Stands Apart from the Rest of the Crowd?

You need to pay Google to display your website on the search engine results page, however, by doing it, you are genuinely in a position to list your business in any of the spots you want, on the supported listing area. If Search Engine Optimization is a long process to attain relevant, authority organic traffic, with Google Adwords you can achieve traffic instantaneously, back to your site. Moreover, most of the traffic is high quality and relevant, with a better chance of getting converted to leads and sales.

Conclusion
To conclude, the concept of obtaining traffic whenever one wants for money makes Google AdWords a unique online advertising system. That’s why it is the favourite of online businesses looking for a higher return on investments.


And your company will pay for it

You might be surprised at your company’s reimbursement policy for education.

Not only can you expense that book that will change the way you do your job, but you can probably take a course on the company’s dime (and perhaps even get some time to work on it).

It’s a great deal for the company. You get paid the same, but now you’re smarter, more engaged and more skilled.

And it’s a great deal for you. Because one day, when you leave the company, you’re going to take the smarter with you.

It’s interesting to consider why so few people take advantage of this extraordinary perk.

One reason is that you might not be aware of it (but now you are).

A second reason is that learning might remind you of school, and alas, school has created bad associations for some people who were hurt by the command and control mindset of industrial education.

The biggest reason I encounter, though, is that people are afraid. Afraid to ask the boss, afraid to assert their desire to learn something and afraid that after they’ve learned it, they won’t be able to live up to the increased expectations.

Even as I type this, I hope you can see how silly this is.

Relentlessly lowering expectations can work in the short run (hello George Costanza) but it’s hardly a strategy worthy of you and your next 10,000 days at work.

Enroll. Engage. Learn. And level up. Ask your boss and give it a try.

       


The first database rule

If you participate in a database about people or their work, the first rule is simple: it should be as simple to fix an error as it is to make one.

If you mischaracterize something, get a digit wrong, sort it wrong, include a typo, inadvertently leave something out, put someone on a list of privilege or denial… every one of these errors is expensive–to you and to the person you’ve misrepresented.

You make it worse, far worse, when you insist that the database can’t be changed.

It’s bad enough that we’ve reduced people and their work to digits. At least we can be agile in fixing our mistakes.

(And yes, I’m talking about the conceptual databases each of us carry around in our heads, not just the digital ones on our desks).

       


Snooze is a trap

There’s a button on my email program that allows me to postpone an incoming email to a future day.

Sort of like a snooze button.

The snooze button is a trap. It’s a trap because not only do you have to decide later, but you just expended time and energy to deciding to decide later.

Do it once, move on.

‘Decide once’ is a magical productivity commitment.

There is a certain class of decision that benefits from time. Decisions where more information is in fact useful.

But most of the time, we’re busy making decisions that should be made now or not at all. You end up with a ton of decision debt, a pile of unanswered, undecided, unexplored options. And you’re likely to simply walk away.

If you open an email, you’ve already made the commitment to respond and move on. Not to push it down the road.

In or out, yes or no, on to the next thing.

Snooze is not for you.

       


Use This SEO Strategy for Your Next Website Redesign

Redesigning your website presents a significant risk from an SEO standpoint if not managed appropriately.

What can be years of optimizations to your infrastructure, design, and content are going to be overwritten, and it’s hard to predict if the organic rankings you’ve earned are going to be swept away. `

If your redesign strategy includes taking SEO into account post-launch, you’ll probably end up in for a world of hurt.

Here’s a look at organic traffic from a brand that came to us after launching a new beautifully designed site, wondering what happened to their SEO traffic.

Website Redesign Performance GraphWebsite Redesign Performance Graph

Don’t be that website.

If your brand heavily relies on organic search to drive traffic, engagement, and conversion metrics, the risks from a redesign are real, and the impact can be devastating.

But through careful consideration throughout the redesign process, you can account for potential pitfalls and mitigate your chances of a drop in organic search ranking and traffic post-launch.

Follow along as I outline how we approach this at Portent.

How to Approach SEO Strategy in your Next Redesign

For many websites, organic search is the channel that brings in the most traffic, and inherently, conversions- whether that be leads or transactions and revenue.

Adding to that, organic traffic is the acquisition channel most at-risk through a significant website redesign.

SEO isn’t a tactic to employ after the website launches to clean up loose ends. Approaching your redesign with SEO in mind from the very beginning of the project is vital to ensure your channel’s requirements are baked into the result.

The key to preserving organic rankings through a redesign is two-fold:

1. Marketers must focus on minimizing risk pre-launch

2. Marketers must have a response plan to threats post-launch

With that in mind, our approach to minimizing risk and building a response plan requires us to include an SEO-minded team member in the project from the very start, identify and address gaps in the marketing stack throughout the redesign process, and quantify the impact on organic KPIs post-launch.

This approach lines up with three stages of the project:

  • The planning and design stage (before any code is written)
  • The development stage (when the website is being built)
  • The post-launch stage (after the dust settles)

Let’s explore each of these stages further.

Get SEO Involved Early

The best way to handle potential SEO issues in a redesign project is to prevent them from existing in the first place. SEO for a website redesign starts long before the first line of code is written.

Get your SEO team a seat at the table from the very first meeting.

Their role on the project is to find solutions to infrastructure and content issues that may crop up. Providing a list of SEO requirements and expecting a designer or developer to take them into consideration isn’t enough.

SEO must be hands-on throughout the process.

Don’t wait for infrastructure decisions to be made for you. You may end up with a funky hosting plan, three subdomains, and two of them running on Wix.

(We’ve seen it happen.)

As an SEO, here are some of the questions to consider when kicking off a redesign process:

  • Is the new CMS or framework SEO-friendly?
  • Will you need to prerender JavaScript?
  • Does the new information architecture include your essential landing pages?
  • How many URLs are going to change?

Find the Gaps

As your new website starts coming together, you should ask yourself the question, “is this website more or less optimized than before?”

To answer this, you need to conduct two SEO audits of the website’s infrastructure and content: pre-launch and post-launch.

The goal of the pre-launch audit is to find all of the big problems that you can’t afford to launch with. Auditing a website that isn’t finished yet may seem premature, but it’s a great exercise; it allows you to correct any show-stopping bugs you may find.

This audit is where your SEO team will do most of the work involved with a typical redesign:

  • Redirecting old URLs to new URLs
  • Migrating title and meta description tags
  • Correcting broken links and unnecessary redirects
  • Testing mobile rendering
  • Ensuring canonicalization

The pre-launch audit should also communicate gaps between the two websites in a few key areas:

Site speed

Does the new platform have fewer site speed optimizations?

Content

Does the new content satisfy queries better than before? Are the same Featured Snippets targeted?

Site structure

Is site navigation more or less descriptive than before? Do your important pages still have smart internal links?

Conversion

Do you expect the conversion rate to be higher or lower?

Your post-launch audit should uncover any new bugs and make sure the website is being crawled and indexed correctly.

Some important factors to review post-launch are:

  • Robots.txt (It’s incredibly common for websites to go live disallowing all crawling)
  • Sitemap submission in Google and Bing search consoles
  • The index coverage report in Google Search Console
  • Checking redirect implementation

Doing two thorough audits goes a long way toward minimizing risk.

Any major threat to your rankings will be identified and hopefully addressed before launch, and everything else will be a known quantity. At this point, you should have a pretty good idea of which way your site’s performance will go.

Measure the Impact

Before you launch your new site, make sure your web analytics and rank tracking are recording reliable baseline data for your KPIs.

Also, confirm the new website has your web analytics implemented correctly. You don’t want to launch with all of your conversion goals broken.

I find these metrics and trends the most useful when gauging post-launch performance:

Organic users by landing page

If you didn’t change your URL structure, this report will be incredibly helpful in narrowing down performance gaps.

Organic users by website section

This report will help you find problems with the design or internal linking structure for sections that aren’t doing well.

Non-brand keyword rankings

For each important landing page, add the non-brand keywords contributing the most traffic to a rank tracker. If any of these rankings take a dive after launch, you’ll know which topics you need to prioritize.

Conversion rate by landing page

If your sales copy or CTA links had a drastic change in the new design, this report would let you know which pages will need their offers reconsidered.

Bounce rate and exit rate by website section

Increases in either after the launch might indicate usability problems with the new design for that section.

Common SEO Pitfalls

There are SEO problems so common to redesigns that I’ve seen one in nearly every launch I’ve cleaned up.

Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by making these mistakes:

Unnecessarily changing the URL structure

The best way to map old URLs to new URLs is to not change them at all. Plus, you won’t break year-over-year reports in Google Analytics. Unless you have a good reason, don’t change your URLs in a redesign.

Not redirecting URLs with backlinks

If you have to change your URLs for a new website, make sure you aren’t throwing your backlinks away. Redirect your old URLs to keep the link authority flowing into your site.

Not checking robots.txt on launch day

If your traffic flatlines after launching the new site, this is probably why. Make sure your robots.txt file is configured correctly.

Using uncompressed images

Please don’t make your users download 4 MB of images on every page. Use the right image format and level of compression to keep your images crisp and as small as necessary.

Introducing unnecessary subdomains

Keep your content in one place. Adding a subdomain to your site will split link authority and guarantee a migration project in the future. Always base a new website on a single platform that can do everything you need.

Time to Go Live

Eventually, it’s time to go live with your redesign.

It can be a nervewracking time for every party involved, but at the end of the day, it’s going to happen.

And while redesigning your website can have profound effects (both positive and negative) on site performance, there are ways to mitigate your risk through the process you take.

Be sure to:

  • Get SEO involved from the start
  • Find the gaps
  • Measure the impact

Sticking to this strategy can set yourself up to limit website problems that could devastate your organic traffic.

The post Use This SEO Strategy for Your Next Website Redesign appeared first on Portent.


4 Ways Technology Impacts our Ability to Make Decisions

This post is part of a new series on conversations worthy of attention. New email subscribers will receive it as part of the weekly digest. Marshall McLuhan observed the effects of media and technology. “The medium is the message,” “We become what we behold. We shape our tools, and thereafter our tools shape us,” and “First we build the tools, then they build us,” are three ways of talking about the impact of technology. True to the Canadian educator and communication theorist observation that “Every society honors its live conformists and its dead troublemakers,” we’re still working on our understanding…


A seat at the table

Short-term profits are a lousy way to build a sustainable community.

There’s always a shortcut, a rule to be bent, a way to make some more money now at the expense of the people around us.

The counterbalance to selfish Ayn-Randian greed is cultural belonging.

“No,” the community says, “we’re not proud of what you did, and you’re not welcome here.”

People like us do things like this.

It’s the community’s role to establish what “things like this” are. If you want to hang out with people like us, that’s the price you have to pay. To avoid the short-term and to invest in us instead.

The community might be wrong. The path of the person making change happen is often lonely, because change is frightening. But too often, the act of taking a shortcut or finding a short-term profit is confused with the actual long-term hard work of making things better.

Fortunately, the community often knows better.

[PS today’s the first priority deadline for the next session of the altMBA.]