How to Handle Tag Sprawl

By | SEO, SEO Strategies | No Comments

Nothing operates in isolation in a market situation. Products and services on offer are either complementary or supplementary. Hence, pushing your products towards success requires more than just offering them for sale due to the immense competition. Gaining a competitive edge over these other brands is the key to having the upper hand in any market. The online platform works under similar terms as well. To make massive sales, you have to make your products unique, such that they stand out from the rest. User-generated content will work out perfect for you.

User-generated content (UGC) is exceedingly valuable when well utilized. It is a rich source of content and site organization. More so, it helps in building natural language descriptions and human-propelled arrangement of site content. Most sites, be they blogs or e-commerce sites, benefit mainly from the use of tags that are a product of user-created content. Webmaster can use these tags to create taxonomies and categories of products for browsing, power site search, and provide well-endowed descriptions of site content. However, their use if not regulated can lead to SEO problems. Their submission in bulk could be cumbersome or even impossible. Leaving them unchecked, on the other hand, can lead to thin content, duplicate content, bad content, and general content sprawl. Fortunately, several forces have teamed up to solve massive tag sprawl problem.

Many site users have little or absolutely no idea what a tag sprawl is. In simple terms, it is the unchecked growth of unique, user-contributed tags that result in a lot of duplicate pages and unnecessary crawl space. It creates URLs of pages appearing to exist for the sole purpose of building an index across a complete range of keywords. The approach is an efficient solution for small blog sites but not the big ones like the e-commerce sites, which heavily depend on tags for products categorization. Users maximize on tag placement in an attempt to optimize exposure of their products.

To correct tag sprawl, useful review of each tag in the database and placing them in groups so that further action can be taken is paramount. The process starts with the determination of the quality of a tag and followed by finding out if there is another tag similar to it that has a higher quality. These tags could either be good tags or bad tags based on the numerous methods that could be used. The methods assist in the determination of whether the tag is valuable or in the identification of other tags that are valuable.

Some of these methods include spell correction feature, which utilizes built-in spell checkers and enables the fixing of large volumes of issues and bid value feature, which assists in determining whether a tag is commercially viable. In addition, the tag search volume method seeks to know the potential value of a tag while unique visitors feature helps protect tags that receive traffic from Google.

The tag count function is used to count the number of time a tag was used on the site while Porter stemming is used to identify the root word from a tag. Other methods include lemmatization that maps the tag to a dictionary form; Jaccard index that uses similarity coefficient; Jaro-Winkler distance that measures the difficulty of changing one word to another. Keyword planner grouping method is also common, and it helps identify highly related words while Wikipedia disambiguation feature assists in the determination of the master term to represent related terms.

Why Reviewing your Business is Important

By | Marketing, Reviews for SEO | No Comments
In the business world of today, many people spend their time to check the reviews of places they go for services like restaurants and banks. It is also a trend for most people to find an accurate NAP for business listings to find their locations for your business. Reviews are the reason why most businesses are chosen. As a business owner, you need to understand consumer sentiments, authenticity, responses, velocity and third-party or native website reviews.

This article is about the importance of reviews for your business. For profitability of your business, you need to ensure review management campaigns that will show the importance of this marketing strategy.

Rating icons will always show a 1-5 star or circles to consumers which they interpret quickly and know whether to buy from or invest in your business. This system has been there for a long time and is in itself a judge for value.

So, when an internet buyer is surfing the net looking for the ideal milkshake joint in town, he will always go for one that has 5 stars. Reviews simply work for or against sales. When you understand all this as a business owner, you also need to understand the impact of star ratings on rankings which is usually done to local packs. Some local packs have been ranked as ‘best X in the city’ for example best fries in the city. But Google is highly focusing on star ratings than local pack rankings.

The world is now getting to a point where high ratings are compared to high local rankings and that businesses should start to view its barriers of low ratings and make serious adjustments. If you are a big brand and you keep ignoring low star ratings, you may soon be forced to close shop, and also suffer the losses arising from it. You may also start to fight to maintain or improve the ratings for your existing/remaining stores. For every business to thrive in the market, it is imperative that it keeps upholding high business standards like customer relations, quality productions, and cleanliness.

Always consider the most basic expectations of your customers, like for a hotel, modesty can go a long way in keeping your clients and attracting others. When you don’t meet this expectation, the customers will most certainly share their sentiments in reviews, resulting in low ratings.

However much you may try to correct a bad business review, customers will always have a backing. They will always scan through your ratings and create a lasting perception about your business. If reviews keep repeating mention of a certain bad aspect of your business, this goes a long way in creating lasting Images in the minds of your customers and keeping them away.

We’ve looked at how the customer’s feelings can affect your business tremendously. Bad reviews can be a way through which you can change your problems. They are very valuable for your business. It also carries a high accountability value that seeks to find out if a business can confidently respond to customers or simply ignore and keep losing them. A business can provide all it can offer on their web page but when reviews come, they may be showing very different results and it’s only very obvious that the consumer will trust the reviews.

Always ensure you check your review in this regard, don’t let them go too low. The reviews will help you stay on top of your game.

Image SEO in the Visual Internet Era

By | SEO | No Comments

For all the talk surrounding virtual assistants and voice-enabled Internet search, online marketers and brand managers should not keep their eyes off search engine optimization for images.

There is no doubt that online searches conducted by the Google Assistant, Apple Siri and Microsoft Cortana are bound to become more commonplace over the next few years, but the visual appeal of the internet should never be ignored. There was a time when online search was mostly dominated by text elements; this started to change a few years ago when Google developers noticed a certain trend among people who specifically crafted their search queries to look for images.

Let’s say a young woman in a romantic relationship meets her boyfriend’s parents, who happen to be from the Lastovo islands of Croatia. Intrigued, she launches a search from the Bing app on her smartphone; since Lastovo is a very scenic archipelago, she is likely to tap the image browsing tab and swipe through the various photos. This search and image browsing practice is very common; one third of all Google searches focus on images, and 12.5 of searchers will specifically browse an image collection.

Why Image SEO Matters These Days

Jaded online marketers and brand managers often complain that the current paradigm of image search is not conducive to SEO. This complaint is only valid insofar as searchers who simply browse images; in the example above, the young woman may simply enjoy great photos of Lastovo and may not bother to visit the websites that actually host the images.

What if the young woman’s relationship progresses to the point that she entertains the thought of a future seaside wedding and honeymoon in Lastovo? In this case, image SEO will be quite powerful if it is done properly. An image that shows a seaside chapel will certainly capture the attention of the young woman, but only if it was properly alt-tagged with keywords such as “Lastovo weddings” or “Lastovo honeymoon packages.”

Aside from alt attributes and tags, proper image SEO includes captions, page title, URL, surrounding text, and the file name. Of equal importance is the quality of the image and the engagement it has produced; to this effect, a Lastovo tour operator should take scenic pictures of wedding chapels against dramatic sunset backgrounds and post them to Instagram. The idea is to get likes, comments and shares that the search engine spider will consider; additionally, embedding popular Instagram photos is another effective SEO tactic.

The Bottom Line of Image SEO

Searchers who browse Google or Bing image galleries, and who click or tap on the button to visit the corresponding website, are sending strong signals about their intentions. In the case of the woman who dreams of getting married in Croatia, her click on a Lastovo image hosted on the site of a travel agency is a strong signal of her potential plans.

Image SEO must fit within overall SEO goals; it starts with an analysis of the opportunities that can be pursued and continues with decisions related to the image. For example, a Croatian travel agency can create a section for Lastovo tour packages, weddings and honeymoons; the goal here is to develop a nice mix of content with images that are complementary. There should be articles with bullet points and videos as well as maps, but it is important to include an image with every content piece. At this point, the images can be properly tagged and shared across social networks.

Creating A Blog That Connects With Your Market

By | Content Marketing, SEO | No Comments

Businesses today don’t just have clients and customers, they have a following. Marketing today isn’t as much about selling a product as it is creating connection with your customers. Creating a blog is a great way to stay in touch with your client or consumer base to maintain ongoing connection. What you put in your blog, however, is very important. Like almost every other aspect of marketing, blogs must be strategic to create maximum impact. Here are 5 steps to creating a great blog.

1. Establish your goals

Ultimately, it’s important to define what you want the outcome of your blog to be, because if you don’t know what the goal is, you won’t have any way of determining if you are achieving it or not. Your goal might be to simply create positive association with your brand, boost sales of a certain product, increase your profile in a certain region or even climb higher in search engine rankings. Sometimes, you can achieve several of these outcomes with a number of blogs, but ultimately, you want to identify one over-arching goal and stick with trying to achieve that.

2. Create your content

There are a wide variety of ways to create great content and no matter what your ultimate goal is, you should offer a wide variety of content. Some content should be for the purposes of educating and informing, but don’t be afraid to just entertain sometimes too. Most of all, your blog should contain viable, actionable information. Think of your blog as the best way of offering a “freebie” to your clients and consumers. BOGO specials are great, but the knowledge you have about your given field is probably far more valuable.

3. Grow an audience

Creating a great blog doesn’t do you a whole lot of good if no one is reading it. Creating great content is the first step, but the second and most important step is letting people know it’s there. If you are not already active on social media channels, your first step is to establish a presence there, and then blast your blog through as many outlets and channels as possible.

4. RESPOND to your readers!

Regardless of what your specific goal is with creating a blog, ultimately will achieve it by creating connection with your audience. You can’t create connection if communication is a one-way street. If people are responding to your blog, that means they are reading it. If you want them to keep reading it, one of the best things you can do is respond to their comments, interact and engage with them.

5. Decide in advance how to deal with negatives

No matter who you are, what you do, create or put out into the world, you are always going to have detractors and nay-sayers. While it can be highly fulfilling to put an argumentative reader in their place, you want to do so carefully, with great caution and a great deal of humor if possible. In some cases, you may simply want to ignore negative comments (or simply delete them) but in many cases, it is important to actually respond – but to do so wisely, carefully and appropriately. Comments and responses on social media can quickly go viral and gain national attention. If or when that happens, you want to make sure the attention you are getting is for you and not against you.