Tag Archives: websites

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How SEO and Search Trends are Impacted by COVID-19

COVID-19 will undoubtedly have long-term impacts on the economy and global market as a whole, with its effects possibly spanning far into the future. Unfortunately, some businesses may never recover from the detriment it has caused. When hopefully, in the coming months, businesses begin to reopen and we attempt to return to a normalized state, one has to wonder what that state will look like in the aftermath of COVID.

Not only has the virus affected the economy, but it has also impacted the digital landscape on all levels. Certain trends in searches have increased, different types of websites are seeing more engagement, and SEO trends are changing as well. Here’s what you need to know about SEO and search trends that are impacted by COVID-19:

 

Increases in Search Trends

 

With people needing a variety of different services and items that were not necessarily “hot” items before, different search trends that have increased include:

 

Ecommerce Businesses Providing Essential Items

The items that tend to be searched for most these days include:

• hand sanitizers

• toiletries

• face masks

• disinfectant

• sanitary wipes

• thermometers

• cold & flu medications

Generally, these searches are made on a “near me” basis.

Health and Wellness Information

Searches in these areas are on the rise and include keywords such as:

• COVID-19

• COVID-19 symptoms

• coronavirus

• COVID-19 prevention

• prevention methods

• healthy foods

• antibacterial

• self-help

• essential oils.

In-Home Activities

People are searching for more ways to keep themselves entertained while complying with stay-at-home measures, and searches include:

• in-home activities

• activities for children

• how to draw

• how to paint

• cooking recipes

Food and Recipe Websites

Food and recipe website are seeing an increase in search trends. People are commonly searching keywords for recipes including:

• homemade pizza

•homemade Asian food

• homemade Thai food

• soup recipes

• pasta recipes

• how to cook a steak

• how to cook chicken

 

Websites Seeing More Engagement

 

Many businesses are seeing more traffic and interaction on their websites than ever before. Websites that are seeing more engagement include:

 

  • Health and wellness websites
  • Retail sites with essential goods
  • Food and recipe websites
  • Social interaction websites
  • Ecommerce websites
  • Fitness and exercise websites
  • News and publishing websites

 

These businesses and keywords are seeing the most action during the “stay at home” initiative and will likely continue to see a rise in searches and engagement until the mandates have been lifted.

 

SEO Tips During COVID-19

 

Here are some tips for SEO efforts during the pandemic:

 

  1. Continue to utilize Google Trends effectively
  2. Reduce the amount of paid searches you make
  3. Increase email marketing efforts
  4. Create reminders that your services that are still available
  5. Maximize customer service support
  6. Avoid exploitation and coronavirus sales or promotions
  7. The market as efficiently as possible
  8. Provide all support possible to your network and community

 

These tips will help you to optimize your SEO during these uncertain times and will increase your digital traffic.

 

Addressing COVID-19

 

For SEO purposes and for the purpose of informing the public, websites currently should either have something specific on their home page addressing COVID-19 or a separate page devoted to describing the services your business is still offering during the pandemic. Websites may even go as far as describing in detail how their services have changed to fit to the current situation, how sanitizing and safety measures are being employed, and the ways in which staff are adapting to continue to meet client needs.

 

Not only will addressing coronavirus on your website draw more search engine traffic, but it will also keep your website relevant to current events, which is important when maintaining SEO. Blogging about how your business is adapting to the current COVID situation is another way in which your website can currently rank higher and with more authority in search engine rankings.

 

During COVID-19, with stay-at-home orders still in place in many states, the use of SEO is one of the most cost-efficient ways to improve business. Investing in SEO during this pandemic will not only benefit your business during this crisis, but also long after lockdowns are over when businesses are reopened.

 

Steps to Begin or Improve SEO for During COVID-19

 

Perform an Audit

In order to be able to see where your website may be falling short, an audit can be made to determine opportunities for improvement, especially now during COVID-19. Online tools and professional services such as those offered by SEO Tuners can help your business determine what to change and how to improve.

 

Utilize Services Provided by Google

Google provides many tools such as Google Search Console and Google Analytics. These tools can be used to help track your website’s SEO and will also be helpful to whoever is performing an audit.

 

Improve Your Metadata

Improving the metadata on your website may improve your SEO exponentially. Whether your titles, headings, alt tags, and other descriptions are altered and improved by professionals or not, metadata improvements and changes are important. COVID-19 related metadata should also be updated on business websites.

 

Polish Pages and Blog Posts

Your pages may need to be updated with unique information, new and relevant keywords, or entirely different, quality content that supports SEO. With coronavirus as a new and highly ranked keyword, utilizing it naturally while informing your website users about how your business is adapting to COVID-19 will provide a big improvement to SEO during this time.

 

Develop Long-term Strategies

Developing long term strategies that plan for SEO improvement in the future, especially during these times, can be very beneficial to your business. Aspects like link building, long-term keyword and topic optimization, consistent site audits, and changing navigation are all aspects that will benefit your website and search engine rankings over time. With an unprecedented future ahead, optimization of your website is an investment that can continue to reap rewards long after this pandemic has passed.

 

The Full Impact

 

Concerns associated with COVID-19 have undoubtedly changed what keywords are being searched for and what websites are seeing increased activity by users. Organic searches have increased for essential goods and services and will likely continue to increase even beyond when the “stay at home” order is released. As families are becoming accustomed to stockpiling resources, especially with the uncertainty of how long lockdowns in their area will last, businesses these essentials should see increases in the website traffic and may need to constantly update the SEO because of it.

Support for customers and the representation of these businesses is extremely important during this time. User behavior has been focused mainly on these businesses, and the need to monitor keyword profiles for COVID-19 will continue. SEO will remain very important for essentials businesses both during and after this pandemic.

 

Need help with improving and maintaining SEO amidst COVID-19? SEO Tuners provides a number of search engine optimization services to businesses looking to optimize their websites such as branding, e-commerce, Google Local, organic SEO, and Link Building  If you’re interested in improving your website’s search traffic, get in touch with us today. Seo Tuners can offer an affordable solution for your business to increase exposure and SERP rankings with organic SEO strategies like keywords. We are confident that we have a solution for all your business marketing needs. Stay safe, stay healthy, and contact us for your SEO needs.

dating app swipe

Wooing Google Online Through Reviews

When you think about it, creating a website is much like dating online - you create a public profile in the hopes of meeting potential mates, or in this case, potential customers. When you put yourself out there, other people now have the opportunity to weigh in with their opinions – and what they say online can have a far-reaching impact on your reputation.

84% of consumers said that they trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. Not only do studies show that reviews are essential to a successful business, they have also been shown to affect your SEO ranking.

 

Google My Business (GMB) deserves your swipe yes and frequent attention. GMB is the number one site for rankings and reviews. Online reviews are perceived as an unbiased opinion of your business, which is why 64% of consumers form their own opinion about your business after reading them. Online reviews affect:

 

  • Your rankings in local search engines
  • Which search results actually get surfaced (and clicked on)
  • Consumer purchasing decisions

 

It’s common knowledge that online reviews and SEO have been closely tied together for a long time. According to Moz, online reviews are estimated to make up 10% of the criteria for how Google displays search results.

 

SEO Tuners highlights 5 ways to use reviews when wooing Google into a better ranking:

 

Build the Trust

 

Online dating can be deceiving so you must use signals to see if your potential suitor is trustworthy and really who they say they are. Google also depends on signals to determine whether you are deserving of a good ranking.

 

If you have mutual friends on social media, a potential suitor can become more appealing and easier to trust. Likewise, when your site receives a link from another relevant site, Google sees this as a positive endorsement. Good endorsements create trust between you and Google, which results in better visibility.

 

Similarly, customer reviews let Google know that you’re a legitimate operation and that people interact with you.

 

Appeal to the Interests

 

If Google had a dating profile, their favorite hobby would be reading, and their perfect match would have a long, relevant bio. Google reads your site to understand your business. The more content you supply the search engine with, the more intrigued it becomes. When you leverage customer reviews on your site for SEO or generate them on Google My Business, Google has a lot of fresh content to read and more keywords to add to its understanding of your business.

 

Customers will unintentionally describe your products and services to Google, and those reviews add SEO value to your business without the customers even knowing that they’re helping you. Reviews can even help fill in the content gaps that may exist on your website and increase your rankings and overall visibility that way.

 

Be Persistent

 

When meeting someone you like online, it is important to get their number so you can follow up and get the date. You should do the same with your customers so you can send review follow-up emails or texts. Timing is everything, so give it a day or two before you send out a request for a second date or business review – and it’s typically ideal to send these requests in the mornings for the best response rates.

 

If people don’t respond to your review request, you definitely want to give them a nudge, but be careful not to overstep. Keep your follow-ups to no more than two contacts, and space them a few days apart.

 

The quantity of reviews plays a big role in how the search engines rank businesses on the web. That said, you can’t rely on people to review your company on their own. Do yourself a favor and nail down a rock-solid strategy early on!

 

Put Your Best Foot Forward

 

You want to make a good impression on Google, because when deciding between a 2-star profile or a 5-star profile, who do you think they will make a higher priority? SEO rankings have been known to be influenced by click through rates. If a high percentage of searches choose your site from the search results, Google assumes you are doing something right and will reward you with more exposure.

 

If you are lacking in the review department, ask some loyal customers to put a good word in for you. If they seem to have trouble following through, try offering a discount in exchange for proof of a GMB review.

 

Appeal to Your Locals

 

Reviews that contain keywords, which are the second-largest SEO factor for determining where a local business shows up, can appear in the “local pack.” The “local pack” is the box at the top of the search results, under the map.

 

When you go online, your dating platform will show you potential-suitors in your area. Google will also show local businesses that match the term searched. Research shows that your business is more likely to show up in this local pack if it has reviews which mention:

 

  • Keywords you’re trying to rank for
  • The city/neighborhood that your business is located in

 

Like a dating app, Google does allow you to customize your listing by allowing pre-populated Google Q and A’s with common questions and answers.  This is a feature that savvy business owners and daters should take advantage of.

 

People are more inclined to interact with you if their questions are answered before they even have to ask. You can fill those pre-populated questions and answers with keywords in an effort to improve your SEO rankings or your chance with someone similar to you.

 

Engagement is a Two-Way Street

 

Engagement matters when trying to get to know a new person, but engagement is equally relevant to Google My Business.

 

Instead of having consumers like your posts and photos, you’re hoping to see them leave reviews on GMB, and post questions on Google Q&A. By the same token, you can engage your consumers by making sure to respond to every review and answering their questions.

 

Google My Business has a support page titled, “How to Improve your Ranking on Google.” In that guide, Google recommends that businesses, “Interact with customers by responding to reviews that they leave about your business.” This hints that responses may affect SEO rankings. If nothing else, your response could change the way a customer feels about your business and get them to change their negative review to a positive one.

 

The more information you provide to Google, the better chance you have at securing a top spot in their heart. Taking these steps to develop a strong relationship with Google will pay off immensely for your SEO.

 

If you’re interested in improving your website’s search traffic, get in touch with us today. SeoTuners can offer an affordable solution for your business to increase exposure and SERP rankings with organic SEO strategies like keywords. we’re confident we have a solution for all your marketing needs.

cartoon computer

Using Backlinks To Your Advantage

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Everyone is trying to make a website that is search engine friendly in order to rank higher. It’s a no-brainer that people get in the SEO game since it’s still the number one way for a business to be seen. However, if you want to rank higher, you have to play by the search engine’s rules.

The more links you have coming into your site, the more people refer to you for something you’re good at. Your number of links is how Google can see how valuable your site is to searchers. The truth of the matter is that even if you have a lot of amazing content if you aren’t being linked by other people, search engines won’t acknowledge your site as valuable.

A backlink is a reference from another web page to your own web page. This is very different from the "outbound" or outgoing links from your page. Do not confuse the two. A backlink is also called an inbound link (IBL) and these links are very important in determining the popularity (or importance) of your web site for search engines.

website graph

It is better to have fewer high-quality links, than thousands of links that bring no value to your backlink profile. Weak or risky backlinks won’t help your rankings at all. It can even hurt you as these links can get you a Google penalty!

Because not all links are created equal, you need to be very careful when you start a link building campaign. Build links for your business, for your customers, make them relevant and associate them with great content. Your users will be happy, and Google will keep you in the search results causing your business to grow.

Here are some guidelines to keeping your backlinks beneficial:

Make Sure The Link Comes From An Authoritative Site

Search engines want to see links that come from high-quality sites that are associated with the outbound link given. Therefore, if you have a link from a completely unrelated site, it won’t be as valuable as a link from a related site.

For example, if you are a flooring business and you are getting links from an internet forum about baked goods, something would seem off to the search engine. And rightly so! Why would a forum discussing the types of cupcakes available want to link to your flooring company? It doesn’t make sense to users and it won’t make sense to the search engines either.

Make Sure The Anchor Text Is Specific

The anchor text for your backlinks is extremely important. Hyperlinking to a page with clear, specific anchor text is a big win for both the user and search engines. Constantly throwing sites the same anchor text will not help you. Google wants to see organic links being built and any attempt to trick the search engines will be frowned upon and isn’t worth the risk.

Make Sure They Are Relevant To On-Page Content

Backlinks aren’t just there for no reason; they serve as an SEO metric and they should enhance a reader’s experience. Backlinks need to be relevant to the content they’re in and actually provide supplemental information. Think of it from the reader’s perspective—backlinks won’t add any value if they’re bringing readers to completely unrelated sites.

Google aims to provide users with helpful, relevant content that answers queries. Unrelated and distracting backlinks get in the way of that. Google considers relevant backlinks to be much more valuable than a backlink from a random, unrelated site. A dermatology clinic site that links to a used car Q&A forum would probably send a red flag to Google (and also confuse readers browsing the site).

Make Sure They Don’t Come From One Site

Having a variety of sites that link to your site is a productive goal. If a site has a lot of backlinks, but they all of them come from one site, this will look spammy to Google.

You should actively strategize to build strong backlinks from a range of relevant sites.

However, Google has no problem with websites linking to each other for legitimate reasons. It is a natural occurrence on the web if a news story on the BBC cites an article on CNN, then a few weeks later CNN cites a story from the BBC.

This is technically a reciprocal link, but should Google penalize for it? No, because there are genuine reasons for these websites to link to each other and they are doing it in a natural way that is good for users.

Make Sure You Are Selective About Hidden Or Paid Links

A hidden backlink is exactly what it sounds like; it is invisible to a user and the search engine. Sounds sketchy, right? It is. A backlink that is hidden—whether by manipulating text and background colors or hiding the link in a punctuation mark—is a “black hat” SEO strategy that clearly defies Google’s best practices.

Paid backlinks are a grey area in the SEO world because certain methods of paid links are viewed as legitimate, while some aren’t. If a link has been paid for that doesn’t automatically mean it’s bad. Since this a grey area, you should be picky with paid methods. If the site’s content is related to your industry, you won’t be penalized for paying for ad space. Paid directory business listings are also fine, as long as they’re reputable.

The best directories are the ones that also provide useful information for your customers. The directories that provide no real value to the internet user are to be avoided.

Make Sure Your Backlinks Are Not Spammy

Spammy backlink tactics can cause real harm to your domain. The longer you allow the spammy techniques to continue, the more work you will have to get those spammy links removed. If you notice that your current SEO service is building spammy backlinks, you should notify them immediately and discontinue service. These tactics will harm your rankings!

Spammy backlinks lnclude:

  • Article Marketing Spam
  • Poorly Executed Guest Blogs
  • Single-Post Blogs
  • (Paid) Site-Wide Links
  • Linkbait and Switch

If you’re interested in improving your website’s search traffic, get in touch with us today. SeoTuners can offer an affordable solution for your business to increase exposure and SERP rankings with organic SEO strategies like keywords. we’re confident we have a solution for all your marketing needs.