In today’s Marketing Slot, we are going to be revising the subjects of Google and Websites.
If you’ve tuned in over the past few months, you will have heard me harping on about user experience and your website.
Today we’ve gone full circle and we’re back on the subject of Google and rankings for our site.
Search has become clever over the past 20 years that I’ve been involved with the internet and websites, we’ve gone from short search terms like ‘newborn photographer’ to long tail search terms like ‘best newborn photographer in surrey’. Voice assistants like Alexa and Siri have changed things too as we can now ask intelligent questions like ‘who is an award winning newborn photographer in camberley, surrey?’
One of the biggest parts of marketing is studying consumer behavior and changing with it. Google is fantastic at this.
Whilst as business owners algorithm changes are frustrating, Google is determined to serve up the best answers for it’s clients to make them keep coming back to Google.
When you look at it like that it’s simple isn’t it?
Let’s take that mindset into our marketing to understand the latest changes at Google.
Now, they are normally cagey about changes, but as I’ve been banging my drum so much, they’ve decided to make an announcement….
Big changes are coming.
Google has held back timescales to mid-2021 due to the effects of Coronavirus, but, changes are afoot.
Google’s question: How can they improve their users’ experience?
Remember that sentence? ‘the best answers, first time’.
Google Page Experience Update
The update is called the Google Page Experience Update, and it does what it says on the tin.
There’s a whole stack of things Google will be looking at on your site when it undertakes it’s regular spider. But here are a few to review:
- Interactivity – Are the menu’s easy to use on all devices?
- Visual stability – Do layout elements move or clash when changing devices?
- Mobile-friendliness – Is mobile load speed great? Are the menu’s easy to use?
- Safe browsing – Having issues with malicious hacks? Time to secure the barracks.
- Https – No SSL? No excuse. Game over. You’ll likely not rank.
- Intrusive interstitial guidelines – Annoying and intrusive popups? Time to clean up your act and give a better experience or you’ll get penalised.
So, these are the technical bits, but what else can we do to improve our user experience?
- Think about site navigation and a clear customer journey (be creative and different)
- Include calls to action on each page, so it’s easy to get in touch
- Think of the questions your client is likely to be asking, and answer them
- Make sure there’s words as well as pictures throughout your site, images inspire and words prompt action.
Why is this important to me:
Simply put, Google will push you higher if your overall website experience is positive.
Whilst the British love to queue, we hate to wait.
Remember those dial up internet days?
If you are waiting for content to load on your site, then your client has likely headed off elsewhere.
By introducing a mix of great content for users to view, a sprinkling of search engine optimisation, and a fast site that is safe, secure and easy to navigate, you will enjoy the benefits of a regular flow of visitors and enquiries.
Tools to help you get started:
• Test if your site is Mobile Friendly – https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly
• Google have developed a new tool called Page Speed Insights, it’s free and it’s helpful, you can find it here: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/
Running a WordPress site?
- Take a look at the great Google Site Kit plug in, it combines Google Search Console, Google Analytics and Google PageSpeed plugins into one easy module.
If you’d love to delve into the world of Google’s latest update, you can read it here: https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2020/05/evaluating-page-experience.html