When it comes to being more rigorous on your website and especially with individual web page analysis, one should start at the top of the page and look at every single element on the page and ask themselves questions about how you can optimize things to make it better. For example, at the top of your homepage, you may have a slider highlighting new products or important messaging or an ongoing deal/discount. Ask yourself, is it the right number of sliders? What’s getting the most attention? Is attention determined by the messaging or is attention determined by the positioning/order? Is there an award ticker on your page or are there categories that your products are divided up by?
Each can have a set of 2 to 5 questions that you should be able to ask yourself when it comes to performance. All these different questions that you can ask should allow you to leverage Google Analytics or WebTrends or whatever your analytics tool is to see what people are doing when they visit your website and so, you can make sure you’re optimizing to provide the best possible the user experience for each visitor.
9 times out of 10, no matter what industry you’re in, search will drive most of the traffic to your site. As such, developing new content that the search engine spiders will find and be able to index is paramount. One trick I love that can produce a good amount of new content would be to develop a glossary of terms that are pertinent to your vertical. There are tons of words that are specific to certain products or services that may even have a different definition when used in another context. An added plus of this strategy is that if you structure your glossary in the form of a question, you have the upside if also qualifying for Google’s “People Also Ask” section which automatically gets higher placement on the search results query page than even regular organic results. Be sure to have one page that lists each term and when the reader clicks on the keyword phrase to see the definition, that definition is on a new standalone page. This will also increase the number of pages that Google has the ability to index which is also a very good thing.
I’m sure you’re already sending an email every week or month touting your “holy grail” of a product, your “best thing since sliced bread”, your amazing widgets, services or content. One pretty effective technique I’ve started to implement is to task my ESP with resending my newsletter to my list but only to those who didn’t open it the first time it was sent. I recognize that although I want to believe that my content is showing up in inboxes with a glowing, vibrating, singing subject line that can not be ignored, the fact of the matter is that sometimes things are overlooked. It may have had nothing to do with how expertly your subject was wordsmiths and simply be that the recipient was out sick that Tuesday afternoon when your blast went out! By resending, you allow for people who just missed the first send the opportunity to catch your must read material the second time around. This technique will have a lower open rate than what you normally average but will boost the overall number of unique opens you typically get.
When it comes to search (both organic and paid), you really need to put yourself in the shoes of the searcher and not only operate as the marketer. One search hack that I’ve implemented in the past was to look at how traffic is driven to our “Gift Guide”. Gift guides have been around since butter was churned by hand and are still being used today as you can still find them on many a retailer’s websites. One subtle change you should think about is that you’ve probably never popped open the Google machine and put in “Father’s Day Gift Guide”. Mainly because fathers get shafted for this day of celebration and are regulated to socks, ties and the big piece of chicken that evening but also because people type in searches in the same way that they speak and as such, a search for “gift ideas for dad” or “10th-anniversary gift ideas” is much more likely. The key here is that humans say “gift ideas” and businesses say “gift guides”. As such, be sure to swap all out those references to “guides” for “ideas” and watch how Mr. Google & Sir Bing all of a sudden will believe that your pages are suddenly more relevant to these types of search queries and you shoot up the leaderboards of search engine results. Think of what phrases apply to your business and optimize your pages for how people search as oppose to traditional corporate talk and watch the positive effects it can have on search.
A Digital Day in The Life – Actual Actions and Marketing Hacks to Drive Your Business Forward.
I’ve read countless blogs, attended numerous conferences, received innumerable emails, watched uncountable webinars and one of the more frustrating outcomes is when I start to realize that I’m not going to learn anything new. Sometimes it’s only 15 minutes into an hour-long session which is fine but it’s much worse when it’s after day one of a 3-day summit. My only recourse at that point is to hope that the bar is open and I’m not much further than a stone’s throw from a body of water. As I’m sure that I’m not the only one who has experienced that rising feeling of dread when you start to recognize that you’re about to lose minutes/hours/days of your life that you can never get back, I’ve made the promise to myself that I would always attempt to provide real value whenever I’m talking shop. The realization of that promise is what you’re going to get here. Please check out some (or all) of the posts below to get actionable insight that you can put into play across a wide range of digital marketing and ecommerce initiatives.
One of the stronger tried and true methods of digital marketing has always been the “email newsletter”. I still wholeheartedly believe that a consistent and insightful email marketing campaign can do wonders for keeping one’s brand top of mind for consumers and potential customers. Your content team should spend hours poring over the topics and priority at which you place them in the newsletter but I don’t care if you’re writing the most captivating copy since the unseen script of the last episode of Game of Thrones, it doesn’t matter if no one opens the email. One great email hack is to talk to your ESP (email service provider) and see if you can implement staggered email sends that factors in the time zone of the recipient. Best practices around email send times state that early afternoon on weekdays not including Monday or Friday tend to have better open rates than other times of the day. In my experience, 1 PM ET is the best time to send but that also happens to be 10 AM PT. To combat against this, I simply send at 1 PM local time for each recipient of my newsletter to make sure I’m catching everyone right after they get back from lunch and they have a bit of energy to peruse my rantings before they have to scurry off for that dreaded 3 PM meeting! Local send times allow you to send at the perfect time of day to all of your readers. Look into it!