Ever wondered how online shops seem to know what you want before you do?
Each time you browse, Amazon (for example) will pop in that scrolling bar of items at the bottom of each product page called “Customers who bought this item also bought”. It’s (usually) full of relevant products like the one you’re looking at.
Now flip back to the Amazon home page and you’ll be presented with “Related to Items You’ve Viewed”. This is where things get interesting, because the choices it shows you are not necessarily directly linked to what you have just been looking at.
As Akira's SEO guru, I'm fascinated by this kind of search results. I just looked on Amazon at the DVD box set of the kids animated films “Hotel Transylvania 1 & 2.” As I’d expect, the “Customers also bought” section shows me other light-hearted children’s animated films, such as ‘Minions’ and ‘The Good Dinosaur’.
Flip back to my home page, and the choice gets more eclectic: “The Lady in the Van’, “Bridge of Spies”, “Spectre’. These mix what I’ve looked at previously with my current viewing, but all within the same category - DVDs.
What has this to do with website SEO and a wet dog? Read on and find out....
What has this to do with my website SEO?
Actually, quite a lot. Amazon’s software knows I’m interested in various film genres from past purchases; animation, spy films, quirky comedies. That’s fairly basic stuff.
It therefore would be logical to assume I own a DVD player and a TV set, and might want to update these soon with newer models. So far so good.
The software might also think that it’s time I watched TV through an Amazon Fire TV stick, and sign up for the Amazon Prime service to stream all the latest movies without cluttering the house with DVDs.
All very logical, and, co-incidentally, exactly the kind of connections search engines look for when assessing the quality of a website and its on-page content.
Quality content for search engines
Search engines are looking for content that is:
- high quality
So, the more information you can supply that is helpful, relevant and linked to your core subject, the better.
Say, for example, your business is a mobile dog grooming service. Search engines will come to your site and look for semantic connections and related topics within your on-page content, i.e. phrases and topics around dog grooming. So you could have text on the best dog grooming shampoo, the sharpest dog grooming scissors, how using your local mobile dog groomer saves time and money over dog grooming parlours. (You’ll find examples of these kind of keyword phrases in your SEO keyword research from Akira. Not had this done? Ask us for a quote!)
Think outside the box
Now it’s time to think outside the box. As Rand Fishkin at Moz.com put it in a recent blog:
What are the topics and concepts, words and phrases that Google probably wants me to cover, that users and searchers probably also want me to cover?
hair of the dog
OK, let’s talk dog hair. People interested in dog grooming presumably have a dog that, well, needs a lot of grooming. It probably means it sheds a lot of hair, so they might be interested in vacuum cleaners specially designed to pick up fine dog hair. They might be interested in dirt trapping door mats to catch muck from muddy paws. They might be interested in lint rollers to remove white dog hair from dark business suits, waterproof dog coats, dog training classes or dog-friendly holidays. The list goes on.
If you add content relating to these related topics to your website, search engines will view it as a source of valuable, useful and quality information for search enquiries - and up your SERPs rankings accordingly.
Blogs are pages too
So, where is the best place to put all this fabulous information so that it’s there to be found, but not cluttering up your Home or services pages?
On your blog.
Website software creates a new page for every blog you write, and search engines see it as such, a stand-alone page of quality information. Over time, your blogs build into a library of useful, related information that can appear on a whole variety of search results, not just searches for ‘dog grooming’.
Here’s the best bit: blogs are a great reason for real people to come (back) to your website. Put a short teaser and a link on your social media sites pointing to the blog, and you’ll drive traffic to your website. More traffic = more people = more potential sales.
Keep on trucking
And it works too. Just today, I noticed a single post written by Akira for a trucking client’s Company Facebook page had got 10,000 views. Pretty impressive for a page that has an average reach of about 400 views per post.
But it got better. Much better.
That Facebook post linked back to a blog on their website - and 9,000 people had clicked through from Facebook to the blog. That’s 9,000 visitors to their website from just one blog post alone, which by any reckoning is awesome!
And of course, the search engines will be tracking those visitors and will come by to see what all the fuss is about. Search engines take into consideration the flow of traffic from social media sites to your website in their algorithm, up to an estimated 15% of the overall measure. So, a good flow of visitors will raise the ranking of that blog page (and therefore your website) in their future searches. Which will generate more visitors to the website who see the blog in their search results and click through. And so on.
Blogs: pages that keep on giving
OK, this doesn’t happen every time we blog (we wish it did!). Hoiwever, it is proof positive that if you cover subject matters that potential customers care about in your blog, they will share and they will want to read what you say. And that all comes from thorough keyword research and thinking outside the box, to discover smart semantic connections and relevant, related topics to write about.
If you’d like help writing great blogs for your website, or keyword research into the phrases potential customers are using right now to find services like your in your local area, call us at Akira. We're happy to help.