What on earth do Chas and Dave have to do with Google and search engines, I hear you say? The answer is we ‘rabbit, rabbit, rabbit’…
We are talking to and asking questions of Google more than ever before and you need to be aware of this because of its affect on search rankings. Rewind to the early days of search and think about the clinical, targeted wording you used. Every so often an ‘and’ or a geographic target slipped in but we were all conditioned to use as few words as possible.
In middle history, we became a little more adventurous and spawned ‘long tail’ search, till using quite clinical terms but with a more liberal approach to adding a geographical location or permitting ourselves up to four words in the search term.
Today, with the advent of Google glasses, the Apple watch, Siri and self-service apps (like the Ask Google app) we are typing less and talking a lot more. The result is we communicate with Google and the search engines the same as speak to another human being and so our search terms are far more narrative and inquisitive than when we write.
But why does this matter?
Have you looked at the search results you are presented with recently? If you have looked closely, it is very rare that you are returned a simple list of topical pages. Typically now you will have a mix of video content, forums, review sites, shopping sites, blogs and traditional sites, as Google seeks to serve up the more relevant answer to our query.
So this matters because you need to ensure that your content is answering the questions your prospects are asking, not serving up the information you want them to read.
How do we do this?
We achieve this by mixing it up a little on the content front – using video, downloadable guides, FAQ’s and written copy – and making sure we highlight the most valuable content through the use of ‘H tags’ (formatted as Headline 1 or Headline 2) and categories and putting it at the very top of our navigation tree.
Here’s a thought – why do people care ‘About Us’ if they don’t even know what ‘Us’ can deliver? Avoid tooting your own trumpet and focus on delivering valuable, rich content that answers the questions prospects will ask – and when I say ask, I mean ask, like they are stood in front of you.
So as you develop content or structure your website just bear in mind that it’s not about you, it’s about them; and notably what’s in it for them. Only then will your online presence really deliver what you need it to.
Posted on behalf of Ben Cooper