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SEO Audit Glasgow

For SEO audits in Glasgow, contact Audit My Website, we will perform an SEO audit (Search Engine Optimisation) for your website to ensure the best rankings and visiblity for your website in the natural search rankings.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the backbone of all online advertising, getting this right is vital to maximising your ROI and the effectiveness of your other digital advertising efforts.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation in Glasgow)

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the backbone of all online advertising, getting this right is vital to maximising your ROI and the effectiveness of your other digital advertising efforts.

Audit My Website are leading providers of SEO Audits in Glasgow, UK. We work with clients nationwide offering vital website checks that will ensure your SEO is optimal and that no barriers prevent your website enjoying the best rankings and visibility possible. So what is needed for good SEO?

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) Audit

How To Ensure Content Is Mobile Optimised

If you’ve been following news in the SEO industry lately, hopefully your website is already mobile responsive. But is the content mobile optimised? If the content of your site isn’t optimised for mobile, it could be adversely affecting both user experience (known as UX) as well as impacting conversion rates.

WHAT IS ‘MOBILEGEDDON’?

In April 2015, Google rolled out a major global algorithm update which the media quickly dubbed ‘Mobilegeddon’. This update meant that mobile optimisation would be used as a ranking factor for mobile searches, so that websites that were mobile responsive would naturally rank above an otherwise equivalent site that was not ready for mobile users.

So the rush to make sites mobile responsive began, immeasurably improving the small screen experience for mobile internet users everywhere, and yet this development work only answers part of the question. In fact, having bespoke, mobile-optimised content is required for a positive user experience and potentially greater conversion rates.

If you have never considered mobile content, this article covers all the advice you need to make a big difference with the smaller displays.

UNDERSTAND HOW USERS VIEW MOBILE CONTENT

As you’re probably already aware, reading content on a mobile device is completely different to reading content on a desktop. In 2006, a study by Jakob Nielsen found that people read web pages in an F-Shaped pattern that consists of two horizontal stripes followed by a vertical stripe. A separate eye-tracking study carried out by Briggsby found mobile-users view web content primarily on the centre of the screen, with 86% of their attention on the upper two-thirds. In addition, a US National Institute of Health study found that internet users’ eyes are drawn more to images than text, helping to demonstrate that the placement of images and text is crucial if you want your content to stand out!

When optimising your content for mobile, it’s usually best to reduce the number of images that take up screen space and bandwidth so that focus may be primarily on the information within your text. Taking into account those studies mentioned, it would be best to ensure your most important content features in the top two-thirds of the page if you are keen to give this information prominent visibility.

CONSIDER THE USABILITY OF THE CONTENT

Although tone of voice is critical to both engage readers and ensuring your content reinforces your brand identity, there’s also a slightly different need mobile users have.

In addition to having a limited-size display, a mobile user is much more likely to either be out and about travelling or perhaps in a much more casual setting. In either case, you should keep text short and snappy. Get to the point, if your company ‘about us’ page is too long then perhaps a mobile user would be most happy with the basic information i.e. contact address, phone number (with a link) and email? You can still link to further testimonials or information about the product or service as needed.

This is probably best all around, as a study as recently as 2015 by Microsoft showed that (in general) reader’s attention spans are dropping.

It’s also a good idea to keep paragraphs short as possible, even to the point where each sentence becomes a new paragraph (although this is very subjective). You may think three or four sentences look fine on a desktop, but on a mobile this can quickly becomes a wall of text!

ASK YOURSELF WHAT THE USER WANTS

It’s important to consider what you mobile users need from the site: are thier needs the same as those using desktops? How do they differ?

A great example of this is the difference between the Trainline desktop and mobile offerings – you’ll notice the desktop offers a media-rich aesthetically pleasing page using the full width. Where a mobile has the all-important search-box that will start a user’s journey to finding a suitable train and booking tickets.

While responsive design may be vital to ensuring your site both complies with Google’s mobile algorithm and offers your visitors a good user experience, to increase traffic and conversion rates you need to ensure your content itself is fully optimised.

If you have any concerns or questions about your mobile content and want to ensure your website is fully mobile optimised, why not get in touch with our team today?

Why Is SEO Important for Businesses?

So you’re writing some fantastic, high quality content and you’re regularly posting it to your social media channels. Yet despite everything, you still don’t see your website at the top of Google. What could you possibly be doing wrong?

The most likely reason is that you haven’t fully optimised your content for search engines. Yes the content itself may be great, but if other bloggers are writing mediocre content that is fully optimised, they will always have a slight edge and better chance of ranking near the top.

So here are the top reasons why your business needs to get on board with search engine optimisation (SEO) and how your other marketing efforts can benefit.

MAXIMISE ROI

SEO is a form of inbound marketing. It’s preferable above other types of offline advertising because it continues to offer rewards for the effort you put into SEO content writing long after the blog post is published. It can also work out more cost-effective than other forms of online marketing such as Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, social media marketing and email marketing. But perhaps best of all, you want to be enjoying the best visibility possible for the content you have spent so much time writing.

PPC and social media may boost your revenue and showcase your brand image, it’s SEO that remains the backbone of your online presence, constantly working hard behind the scenes and marrying seamlessly into your other digital marketing efforts.

SEO is also favourable because it’s largely invisible and sympathetic to searchers needs: if you have optimised your site and blog post well, hopefully it will rank for the types of questions a searcher might be entering to find an answer to their question. You become a type of answerbank, and in this regard both your aims and those of Google’s become the same. Separate studies have also shown people are more willing to trust the quality of accuracy of organic search results over paid (or sponsored) Google AdWords.

SEO does the hard part for you by getting potential customers through the door, it’s then your job to convince them that you’re the best business to fulfil their needs.

IMPROVE YOUR CREDIBILITY

In the SEO world, it’s no secret that Google rules. This search engine holds credibility and the trust in the search results it delivers. It’s a natural assumption that those businesses at the top of the SERPs are the most relevant and trustworthy for the searchers phrase, while those at the bottom are probably less so.

But what helps Google trust your website? As well as considering the keywords you want to rank for, you have to consider things like backlinks, links to other websites, traffic volumes, easy and user friendly web page navigation, ensuring none of your websites pages contain errors, and more recently, attention to how fast your web pages load, SSL certificates and more.

Keep on top of all these factors and you’ll be in good stead to beat the competition by showing you’re a credible company with a trustworthy website.

INCREASE TRAFFIC

An unoptimised site will find it more difficult for customers to find you – compared with the same site when fully optimised. And it will prove particularly difficult to attract those who didn’t already know they needed your products and services.

This is why Keyword Research is a vital step to ensuring your blog post can attract the type of traffic looking for the content you are providing. It gives you a straw poll of the types of searches people do when attempting to answer the sort of questions you may be writing about. Like many forms of advertising, it’s both based on intuition and educated guesswork. While you may feel you know all types phrases people might search for, there will always be that one person out there who would say: “That’s funny, I would have searched for … instead.” And they are not wrong, hence why keyword research is necessary. Both to analyse the levels of search volume on the phrases you know about, and to highlighting any alternative keyword opportunities you may not even have considered when writing the post in the first place!

To put this into another context,if you had a high-street store selling discounted mountaineering equipment you’re much more likely to be successful by opening it in the Lake District where there is a constant footfall of your target customers, rather than opening it on London’s Bond Street next to a Prada and simply assuming people will come inside.

ANALYSE, TWEAK AND REPEAT (it never stops!)

SEO is a long term commitment and in order to see true success from it you need to continue monitoring and tweaking your approach as you would with any other marketing strategy.

Google Analytics is an invaluable SEO tool allowing historic and realtime analysis of traffic to your site. It gives you all the detail you need to identify sales funnels, your visitors behaviour including how they found you and in some cases what they searched for. It is also not limited to organic searches, but will also give you a detailed analysis of any active PPC campaigns you may also have.

So don’t lose out on customers simply because you don’t fully understand search engine optimisation, or assume it takes more time and money than you have to spare to get it off the ground. Some things are intuitive and, as the site owner, you may be best placed to understand your searchers habits and needs.

Our team of SEO experts can conduct a complete SEO audit of your website and identify what tweaks can offer a world of difference to your rankings and site traffic. If you are interested in ramping up traffic, increasing your sales leads and enjoying the full benefit of the content you’ve carefully written, you should get in touch with us today!

HTML Title Tags & WordPress SEO

Dynamic Title Tags to Benefit SEO

WordPress is a popular. In fact, according to the latest statistics from codeinwp.com, WordPress is currently makes up around 50-60% of all content management systems (CMS) currently in use!  With these WordPress popularity statistics, you can see just how difficult it can be to stand out from the crowd. What makes your website different from the others? If you’re not yet sold on the benefits of employing a dedicated SEO agency to help answer this for you, here are some of our top tips for getting the most from your HTML Title tag in your WordPress SEO efforts.

Dynamic Title Tags

Title tags are regarded as one of the single most influential factors that influence a page or websites rankings. These are within the part of your HTML and are generally not visible when looking at a web page in your browser, although some browsers may display this title at the top of the browser tab or window bar. Each page can have it’s own dynamic HTML title tag, and while you may find it helpful to keep certain keywords and phrases across the site, you also want to use each page’s title to target phrases specific to that page.

Search engines use these page titles to understand what topic is under discussion within the page itself. For these reasons, it’s worth carefully considering what you use for the title of each of your blog posts you write to understand what type of visitor might be interested in what you’re writing about.

For instance, suppose I run a website called techblogdaily.com, I may write about some of the latest gadgets and technology consumers buy. So I may be inclined to use something like “Tech Gadget News and Reviews” to target the generic searches around ‘gadget news’, ‘tech news’ and so on (hopefully finding many useful combinations of phrases being emphasized this way across the site).

Custom HTML Title Tags for Page Specific SEO

But when I write a specific blog post reviewing an item (let’s suppose it’s the “TaoTronics Bluetooth Shower Speaker”) I may build the title to read:

“Water Resistant Bluetooth Shower Speaker | Gadget News and Reviews | Techblog Daily”

Helping to tailor this page to rank for ‘water resistant shower speaker’, ‘bluetooth shower speaker’ while at the same time re-enforcing some of the major phrases that relate to the whole website.

Dynamic HTML Title Tags for WordPress

There are a number of ways to achieve a custom title within WordPress. By default, WordPress will use the name you gave the page as both the URL (Web address) and page title, though many plugins let you customise this further.

We can recommend the WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin and also the All-in-one-SEO pack. Not all themes may be set up to use all plugins, and in some cases you may be able to set dynamic titles.

With this popularity of WordPress as a CMS, it’s worth taking the time and ensuring your SEO is carried out well and ensure you can stand out form the crowd. This is why it’s a good idea to consider hiring a professional SEO company to help manage your websites online marketing and SEO. If you are in need of online marketing assistance, why not get in touch with us here?

10 Reasons SMEs Should Hire an SEO Agency

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and includes all the factors that can influence search engines to rank a website higher in the listings for particular keywords. More recently, SEO and marketing are inseparable concepts, indeed even the phrase ‘digital marketing’ has become somewhat redundant in favour of considering simply ‘marketing’ within the context of the web. This means that you need it in order to make your business more profitable and successful.

Most industries on the web will now face some pretty stiff competition. Under these conditions, we are always surprised how many business owners are happy to just keep their head above the water, but this is definitely not the key to success.

The real question here is how you can you make a noticeable difference in being successful if you have a small business (SME)? Most UK businesses are SMEs and we feel it’s important we help answer these questions before you consider the one thing we have all thought about from time to time: do you hire an SEO agency?

1. SEO is time consuming

SEO has grown up over a number of years, there are now quite a range of technical terms and concepts that might seem a lot to take in at first. While you may find some good advice online, often further reading will reveal alternative views. We often see business owners underestimate both the level of complexity of knowledge required to do good SEO and find they lack the time to research these topics in enough detail to do it properly. Whould it not be cheaper to leave it to the people who do this each day?

2. Poor SEO costs your business

If you build an SEO strategy that doesn’t work, it will not only cost you any business lost as a result, but may also make it harder to get the right kind of SEO you need to bring the right kind of business. Even low-cost SEO software tools are pricey, and they cannot do the job of an SEO expert. Even with the right tools, you may struggle to find the strategy to use them to optimal effectiveness on your own.

3. SEO is not ‘one size fits all’

There are many ways to achieve results in SEO, each website and industry will be slightly different. As a result, there is no single set methodology that will satisfy all websites. A successful campaign needs some creative marketing thinking, backed by SEO experience.

4. The algorithms of search engines are forever changing

If an algorithm is updated, this means that, most probably, some of the ranking factors have changed. This happens very often. An SEO agency will always be aware of these updates, and they will change the strategies and techniques according to every new update. Keeping up with all the updates and knowing how to improve your strategy every time is impossible if you are not an SEO expert, so don’t even think to try it.

5. SEO firms use professional analytics

SEO software and tools are crucial for understanding what are the suitable strategies for your website. You have to know what works and what does not work for you in order to improve your SEO tactics. Professional SEO analytics are expensive and hard to use; that’s why you should think about hiring an SEO firm.

6. SEO experience is irreplaceable

No matter how hard you try to do quality research and improve your SEO strategy, you will never have the experience of an SEO agency. This experience is vital for providing successful SEO tactics and integrating your business into the search engine systems.

7. SEO agencies provide you quality competitor analysis

Competitor analysis is very important for the success of your business and for creating the best strategies. Keep in mind that an SEO agency has a lot of experience and it knows what worked in the case of other businesses in your field and what didn’t. Moreover, they have a complete image of the area of your small business, and they know who your competitors are. If downloading your competitors’ back link profile and analyzing their topical authority sounds strange to you, you should hire an SEO firm.

8. SEO experts bring you relevant traffic that increases sales

Some SEO techniques, such as link building, may have an effect on your page ranking, but they do not improve your sales. Furthermore, link building is not such an important ranking factor nowadays, because it can be easily manipulated. On the other hand, SEO experts are able to bring you relevant traffic, which has a high conversion potential. This means that those who are accessing your website are actually interested in the services you provide, and they are potential clients.

9. SEO firms increase your credibility and popularity

Being regarded as a credible company and gaining popularity are two essential keys to success. Applying the right SEO tactics means a lot of work, but it leads to success. SEO experts can make your business well-known on social media, increase your website ranking and so on. Of course, this is the result of a lot of hard work, knowledge, and experience. As you cannot have all these in an instant, it is better for you and your business to hire an SEO firm that will do all the hard work for you.

10. Weak and Negative SEO techniques will downgrade your website rank

The Internet is packed with negative SEO techniques, such as adding invisible text, spam links, and keyword stuffing that you may be tempted to try if you see that other strategies do not work. Even though all these can increase your page rank on the short term, they are very dangerous on the long term. Search engines will penalize you and your website rank will be downgraded. Then, it will be much harder to upgrade your page rank once again, so don’t even think of trying these techniques.

Audit My Website are SEO specialists able to perform a range of SEO audits that include backlink checking, content analysis, competitor analysis and overall SEO health. If you have any questions or comments on this, why not get in touch?

What Does an SEO Audit Typically Include?

One of the biggest issues business people will often raise about their website, is not being able to see their website in the search rankings (SERPS). Perhaps understandably, many will want to find effective ways of appear at the top of the first search page in order to maximise visibility. What they often overlook, is why their website is not performing as it should. Website owners need to perform an analysis on why their site is not ranking high in search and not converting more visitors to leads and leads to customers. In others words, their site needs a check up. The successful approach to this, is to have a fully comprehensive website audit.  This should be done before you embark on any site changes as much of the feedback will guide both the user interface (UI) and also content and SEO changes that may be needed to ensure the best rankings possible for these search terms.

There are four aspects of auditing a website which include content and SEO health, code security and page load speed are among the most important. An SEO audit will give you an idea of how your website functions for the crawlers and search engines, how it appears in the search results (SERPS) and how you’re focusing your SEO efforts. Are you concentrating on impressing search engines or your visitors? Are you executing some SEO strategies poorly? For instance, are you using the right keywords or are you using them correcting or incorrectly, such as stuffing them into places where they don’t make sense.

There are over 20 areas of concern when you perform a technical assessment on your website. While there is not enough space to go through all of them here, let’s list some of the more important ones.

· Error messages – Is your site error message free or do visitors get error notices, such as 404 notices. Do they contain any temporary or permanent redirects, such as 301 or 302 notices.

· URL issues – Are they too long or contain characters that do not belong. Keyword stuffing your URL will hurt, not help when it comes to SEO. A good rule of thumb is to ask the question “Can I tell what this page is about by reading the URL”. If the answer is yes, you’re in good shape. URL’s should not contain dynamic characters (#,<,>,&,%,$, etc.). if you do use them, keep in mind that each character has a specific use and you must be sure you are using them correctly. The symbol # is ignored by search engines.

· Links – Links are the most important facet of SEO and are an article by themselves. For now, external links should be relevant to your site and authoritative by nature.

· Meta tags (Title, Description and Keywords) – Meta titles are the blue line you click on a search results page (i.e. Google Search) to be redirected to a site. They should contain the keyword, be 50 to 70 characters in length and be unique to the page. Each page should have its own title. The Description is similar. Make them unique to the page, do not stuff keywords. They should contain contact information. A geo qualifier is important, i.e. Milford CT. Use more than 140 characters but less than 156. Meta keywords are ignored by most search engines so go ahead and ignore them as well. Be sure to limit them to 8 words and less than 100 characters if you decide to use them.

· Other places to look at in a technical SEO analysis include: h1, h2 tags, alt tags, images, anchor text, robots, file size, page depth level, internal links, site maps, bot crawling, and follow, no follow.

Ensuring the technical aspects of your site are correct and up to date is important, but site content must be examined too. The first question to ask is “Is the content on this page high quality?” Put yourself in your visitor’s shoes and ask “Did my questions get answered? Was it easy to find what I was looking for? Was the information valuable? Was the material well written?” Answering no to any of these questions should motivate you to make improvements.

From an SEO perspective, the keyword for each page should appear in the top headline (h1 tag). This alerts the search engines to what this page is about. Every page should have its own keyword. Put the keyword at the top of the first paragraph and then use it only when it makes sense to do so. If you have images, and you should, put the keyword in the alt tag as well as a word or two that describes the picture.

Once more visitors are seeing your site, are you maximised to get leads? For instance, how easy is it to navigate the site? Are your main value propositions appropriately displayed to get the most attention? Is your site free of distractions? For instance, you should never have a link that takes the visitor away from your site. If you do have outgoing links, make sure they open up in a new window. Are your Calls-To-Action clear and easy to follow?

Websites audits can be challenging, and we would not recommend that website owners attempt this themselves, we recommend employing a team that specialise in this service such as Audit My Website in Website Audit.

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Your Pre-Launch Website Checks

Launching a new website is both exciting and stressful! The project is complete, you have a great new site, but there can so many things for everyone to check that it can be hard to know where to start. How can you be sure nothing gets missed and everything went as planned?

With this in mind, we have produced a basic website launch checklist. Depending on your requirements, we think it may be worth building your own website launch plan comprising a list of steps and a schedule for checking each based on what you need. Without further ado, here are our top points to check when launching a new website:

Post Development Checks

Once the core functionality of site site has been tested, it’s time to take that step back and review everything in it’s entirety. Only here do the really small things start start becoming visible.

  • Check for Broken Links: Even smallest websites will often have many Urls. Checking each can be a challenge in itself, even a few broken links can hold your website back in the search rankings and also have a negative impact on your visitor’s experience. Luckily, there are some great tools such as Link Assist’s Website Auditor that will spider the site and log any crawl errors such as broken links (4xx) or pages that give errors (5xx).  There is also a good free tool called Xenu.
  • Custom Not Found and Error Pages: Even when things don’t go according to plan once the site is launched (such as visitors following dead links, or mistyping a web addresses), you still want to give visitors the best experience possible. Having custom not found / error pages not only tidy up the look and feel of your site, they also reinforce your brand and help create a very professional experience.
  • Check Urls are search engine friendly and fully indexable: do you link to all places on the website? Are all pages either linked or included in the sitemap? Are there any pages with query strings that may be less easy for search engines to index and could those links be rewritten to look like a full Url? It’s worth checking that all your content is accessible.
  • Check your site displays properly: It’s fine having a site that is indexing and handles error pages and broken links, however if you have forgotten to check all the pages across all the main browsers and mobile devices, you may be in trouble. Open all the pages, navigate through the site and ensure everything displays as it should. You should be particularly careful when testing on mobiles and tablets, the times we have seen content completely disappear upon mobiles is untrue – check, check and check again.

SEO Checklist (Site Content & Structure)

Content and structure are hard to separate; they are like two sides to the same penny. You want to ensure your sites Url structure is optimal for SEO. In turn, this will also depend on what content you have upon those pages.

  • Keyword research and competitor research: This first vital step helps you identify your website’s target keywords and priorities. Whether you use the Google Keyword Planner Tool or any other, gathering together the different keywords by group and purpose, testing the levels of search and competition for each in turn provides the foundation for all other SEO activities.
  • Structure: Being guided by the results of the previous step, you can now take a look at your website structure and see if the pages allow a visitor flow that mirrors the purpose of keywords. It is probably best to think of these as grouped keywords, each grouping being bound to a particular section of the website.
  • Content optimised: In addition to structure, it’s important to check whether the content itself is well written and optimised. Does it read properly and convey your message back to your target audience in the way you need it to? Does it contain all the important information they will be interested in? Is it logically structured? Some people may visit your site with a very specific requirement, for this reason it’s always a good idea to break up the pages based on visitors need.
  • Check for duplicate content: Duplicate content can hurt your SEO efforts and annoyingly, detecting it can be tricky. There are some great duplicate content detection services such as Copyscape which allow you to paste in some copy, and it will help identify if this same copy is found elsewhere on the web.  Another way this can be tested is by copying a whole paragraph into the Google search bar and hit enter. Hopefully, your web page will be the only one that ranks (if it has been indexed) for this full paragraph search, if not then either you or someone else has copied the content.
  • Check your internal link strategy: Once you have your overall content and structure, you can now also review your internal links which really details the relationship between your content and structure. This should be aimed at not only giving you more links between pages in your site, but should also allow you to include more keywords within these links to help quietly promote various sections of the site for particular topics.  It should also be aimed at taking visitors directly to the information they came for. If you feel that one type of visitor may also be interested in another product or page, include a link in the content!
  • Check robots.txt and sitemap.xml: Make sure these are present and correct and that they allow search engines to fully index all the pages you need. If you have a content management system (CMS) don’t feel the need to include each individual admin link in the robots.txt file as this can also volunteer sensitive information to attackers by informing them of your admin Url structure and files.

Website Optimisation Checklist

  • Page load speed: This is a growing area of importance since Google announced they would take page load speed into account as a ranking signal for websites. Since then, there has been a bit of a mad scramble to see how many different ways websites can be made faster. Luckily, there are also some great tools to help test the speed of your pages. Pingdom have a page load speed test, and Google (via Webmaster Dashboard) also include their own testing tool, both of which can be used to work out where your site is failing.
  • Are Javascript and CSS minified and bundled? Most modern websites have a lot of Javascript and CSS resources. Loading all of these, particularly if they are spread across multiple domains can take a long time. Minifying and bundling these together can significantly reduce the time a user has to wait for the page to be fully functional when loaded.
  • Image optimisation: This often overlooked aspect of website optimisation can offer seriously big savings in terms of page load times.  There are a few things we suggest you check here:
    • Is the format of my image appropriate? For instance, JPEGs are best for ‘real images’ that include a wide variety of similar colours i.e. photographs. PNGs have more generic compression but support transparency and are typically smaller in size.
    • Is the (file) size of the image appropriate? Most image formats including JPEG have built in compression that can be finely tuned and can reduce most images by about 60 to 70% without a noticeable loss in quality when used.
    • Are the dimensions of the image suitable? This is a common one we see many websites get wrong with 60% of websites we encounter rendering ridiculously large image sizes. Ideally images should be as large as needed, but no larger than they will actually be used. If you upload an image several times bigger than the slideshow it will be used in, the users will never see the full detail the image includes and your server will still need to serve the entire (large) file.  In practice, this can often be many images, leading to some serious savings in page load times if images are optimised site-wide.

Site Monitoring

Just like launching a rocket, once launched, the biggest immediate risks appear over, and now it’s a case of staying the course and ensuring nothing unexpected happens further down the line.

Site Visitor Monitoring: It is important to have some kind of visitor tracking once your new site is launched. We recommend Google Analytics, but there are some other good free tools out there as alternatives. This kind of tracking is essential for monitoring your SEO and marketing efforts, but will also give you early warnings about some kinds of problems and usability issues visitors may encounter.

Site up-time monitoring: We would suggest that all websites have some kind of uptime and availability monitoring.  Pingdom and Uptime Robot are two good services that will send alerts if your website appears to stop responding. When a site goes offline, Google and search engines will begin gradually demoting the website from the rankings until it comes back online. This is also tricky to spot, so having early warning alert systems are great ways to keep informed of serious issues.

Split testing / conversion tracking: To help monitor your SEO and marketing efforts, it’s important to have some kind of performance reporting and monitoring in place. Along with Web Analytics such as Google Analytics (mentioned earlier), it’s possible to set up ‘goal tracking’ as part of conversion optimisation. By analysing which visitors completed an action (such as completing a purchase), you can obtain vital feedback about which areas of your SEO are working particularly well, which can then be useful when reviewing your SEO strategy.

Performance reporting: In order to measure the much longer term marketing strategies for your website, it’s important to include some kind of performance reporting. This can help guide some of your decisions on where to focus your online marketing efforts and tweaks next.

Backup and Recovery

Now the site is live, with all the tracking and monitoring it could need. What could possibly go wrong? Regardless, we recommend having some kind of backup strategy in place.

Plan your backups: How often will the website be backed up? If your website includes a content management system (CMS) it will likely need both files and SQL data backing up. How do I get access to these files. Do I have an offsite copy of my website?

We hope this guide can provide a basic wbesite launch plan template which will offered a few helpful insights into common tasks that need carrying out when launching a website. Hopefully if you follow the points in this guide, you won’t go far wrong.

 

Introducing : Audit My Website

Introducing: Audit My Website

Website audit service for SEO, speed, performance and security

How healthy is your website? When was the last time you had it tested and benchmarked? How can you be sure you are maximising your website’s full potential?

In an ideal world, you don’t want to wait until an obvious, show-stopping fault develops before taking action. Yet with so many professionals offering free SEO reports and website security audits it can be hard to know which advice you can trust.

The reality of the modern web is that all these factors are now important, and increasingly interdependent on one another: having reliable and optimised code that runs quickly means pages load faster, which means you will get better rankings in the major search engines. For a while now, Google in particular have employed page load speed as a ranking factor – in other words, your websites SEO and overall performance are now one and the same.

To this end, we introduce our one stop service to measure your website’s security, speed, content and performance; all increasingly important aspects of your website’s health.

To achieve this, our team have carefully developed an integrated all-in-one website audit service that covers everything you need to have peace of mind that you:

  • are getting the best performance from your website

  • can rest assured that your website is secure and will be reliable day-to-day

  • can confidently develop your website further, knowing it is scalable enough to grow with your business.

So what do you get with our website audit package?

 SEO technical audit

You receive the full, top-level SEO audit which analyses your sites pages and structure to ensure you are properly utilising the full potential. Our report covers areas such as page titles and meta tags, headings and other key content is correctly in place and setup. We will check to ensure the search engines find you easily and only search the relevant content.

We check any errors search engines encountered when crawling and indexing your site to make it a search engine friendly as possible.

Many SEO issues prove hard to spot: broken links can often arise due to pages moving or domains (of websites you link to) being discontinued but won’t be immediately obvious without the right tools. If not properly managed, these factors can have increasingly negative impacts on your rankings in search engines like Google. Similarly, you may have some very content rich pages that you are only getting two thirds of your deserved visibility from in search engines.

Code Review

Code reviews are the only way some issues can be spotted at all. Similar to taking your car for an annual service, our website audit service can head off and resolve issues before they become critical for your business. We will review the code at a high level, making sure it is suitable for your business needs, paying particular attention to ensuring it is both scalable and future-proof. If you find some pages slow to load, or doing some actions on your site take a long time a code review is a must. This can also highlight any security vulnerabilities and potentially dangerous code.

Structural Survey

Ensuring your site has an optimal page structure and appropriate navigation not only helps visitors find what they need (which will improve conversion rates), it will also helps search engines index your site which, in turn, will give you better SEO performance.

Content marketing is a discipline in it’s own right and one that is integral to your online marketing strategy. Ensuring that call-to-actions (CTAs) are well placed and clearly visible will ensure your pages are as high converting as possible.

Having an appropriate foundational structure is also vital to support your website’s growing needs as it develops with your business. Helps protect your investment in your website and give it the best outlook possible.

Content Analysis

One of the most vital aspect of your website’s health is the content. Content that is well-written and highly optimised is essential for good rankings, but this is only the first step. Your website’s copy should be engaging to the right kind of visitor you are looking to attract. Content marketing is a discipline in it’s own right and one that is integral to your online marketing strategy and efforts. Ensuring that call-to-actions (CTAs) are well placed and clearly visible will ensure your pages are as high converting as possible.

Performance Benchmarking

The last, but probably the most important in terms of SEO and marketing performance is your website’s performance. How quickly a page loads will now affect rankings and sales. In 2010 Google announced they would use page load speed as a ranking factor; if your pages load slowly, you won’t get the rankings you deserve, even if you have your website SEO optimised. Perhaps more importantly, studies carried out by Akamai and Gomez found that nearly a half of web users expect the site to load in 2 seconds or less. Does your website load this quickly? The same study showed that 78% of web shoppers who have trouble with site performance say they won’t return to buy from the site again.

If you have any concerns about any of the issues we’ve detailed here, and interested in us carrying out a website audit? Why not get in touch – our prices start from only £999 + VAT, a small investment with potentially a massive return for you.

You receive the full, top-level SEO audit which analyses your sites pages and structure to ensure you are properly utilising the full potential. Our report covers areas such as page titles and meta tags, headings and other key content is correctly in place and setup. We will check to ensure the search engines find you easily and only search the relevant content.

We check any errors search engines encountered when crawling and indexing your site to make it a search engine friendly as possible.

Many SEO issues prove hard to spot: broken links can often arise due to pages moving or domains (of websites you link to) being discontinued but won’t be immediately obvious without the right tools. If not properly managed, these factors can have increasingly negative impacts on your rankings in search engines like Google. Similarly, you may have some very content rich pages that you are only getting two thirds of your deserved visibility from in search engines.

Security Audit

Security is more important than ever; you’ve probably already seen several I.T. related security scare stories in the media this year alone.  if you run a content managed website like WordPress , Umbraco, when was the last time you updated and checked all your plugins? Is your website CMS up to date with all the appropriate security patches and fixes? If even one patch is not applied, your website may have a gaping hole in security, making potentially any information it holds vulnerable to attack.

If you have a customer login area, have you checked all your users passwords and details are secure? Storing passwords in plaintext is a source of many problems for some websites and has lead to some large fines where users personal data has been put at unnecessary risk. This is the type of security weakness that will only get found out when inspecting and reviewing code or when an attack happens. Which would you feel safer with?

If you require a more in-depth security review, we can arrange a full penetration test against your website, this is a lot more involved and very specialised but another service we can offer.

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The Art of Writing Good Web Content

The web is awash with advice on writing good content. So much advice, in fact, that you may actually get slightly different advice depending on who you speak to! Like winning an election, writing good copy isn’t about pleasing everyone all of the time – it’s about giving one specific core demographic what they want whilst at the same time trying to keep the others as happy as possible. Today we will detail some of the more universal guidelines to writing good copy that will help get better engagement from your web visitors.

First: understand your visitors!

There are a couple of characteristics you can expect web reader to have which are very different to other readers:

  1. Most of the time, they will scan the text, rather than read properly! Keep things concise and to the point. Make sure key information is clearly visible where needed.
  2. Visitors will typically be like a hunting animal; they have arrived your your site in search of something specific i.e. a product, a service, an idea etc. They will not necessarily read all the text you give them, but will keenly  ‘follow the scent’ to track whatever they came for. This is why it’s always a good idea to re-enforce your internal linking between blog posts, especially if they digress into different topics and trails.

Identify your topic

This may sound obvious: be specific about what you are writing about. As mentioned, the visitor is like a stalking animal, if you try and be all things to all people, you will confuse and throw them of the scent! When reviewing visitor stats, you may find some topics suddenly attract quite a bit of interest – if so, could this be a ‘multi part blog’ that continues to build on the successful topics you’ve written about?

Do your research

Try searching for the topics you plan on writing about to see what others have written. The first few results in Google are those that came the highest valued (in terms of social sharing, backlinks and so on).  Read these and see if you can identify what made them such as great answer to your search query. Are there any points you could further build on? Are there any additional angles you might write about?

Knowledge is universally appreciated. Be sure to research the topic you are writing about. By bringing references, facts and figures – whether the reader agrees with your points or not, your facts will stand in their own right and you may even find it attracting links from others who are also making points that rely on this information.

Write original content

Do you offer something unique in information or style? In some cases it may simply be presenting a well understood topic in a new light or with a unique spin. This is especially important since the Panda Google search update, designed to weed out ‘thin’ content and content farms. Be sure all your writing is your own and written in your own style!

Create a strong headline

An award-winning headline will help your content stand out. For most people, in almost all cases the headline of your blog is the first thing people will see (whether in the search results or a link from another website). What you write here will affect your click through rate (CTR) and also bounce rate. You can bring both SEO and creative writing skills to bear in this. Many find it best to jot down a handful of ideas, and simply mark off those that are particularly good to further refine ideas. So what makes a good headline? We recommend considering the ‘four u’s of headline writing:

  • Make it Unique – your headline should stand out in some way from all the others
  • Make it Ultra-specific – remembering the analogy of the hunting animal, your headline should be specific enough the visitor can decide in an instant, whether this is something they’re interested in or not.
  • Make it Useful – the headline should in some way, give the reader a clue about what the page includes and let people know the benefits of reading.
  • Make it Urgent  – your headline should put pressure on the reader to not risk missing out by not reading the post.

Make content actionable

Do you give visitors useful information they can apply right away? If the reader feels you are giving them valuable information throughout your blog which they can use, they are much more likely to continue reading.

The challenge is usually that, at the time of writing, you never truly know how your visitors will react.  Following these guidelines will ensure you always write copy that is fairly engaging and you can never go far wrong. But as with every creative industry, your milage will vary be sure to try new angles and explore the possibilities.