Tag

Technology

Browsing

If you operate a website in order to promote your business or services you’ll know how tempting it can be to throw money at it if it’s not performing. Over time this can make operating costs skyrocket, so it’s important to be aware of the free tools that are available to you to help make sure your website is performing at its optimum level. If your biggest priority is generating as much organic traffic for your website as possible, then the tool you NEED to know about is Google Search Console.

Formerly named Google Webmaster Tools, on the surface Google Search Console appears to offer a lot of the same functionality as Google Analytics. But whereas the analytics tools help you to analyse who is coming to your website, where they’re coming from and how long they’re staying, among other things, Google Search Console is more focused on internal technical information that is crucial to ensuring your website is achieving what it needs to be.

How Do I Get Google Search Console

Anyone can make an account and use Google Search Console. You can sign up online, and you’ll then need to enter your website’s URL. You then need to verify ownership of the domain. This is most commonly done by entering some code, provided by Google, to your website, which digitally indicates to Google that you are the owner of the page. There are a number of in-depth tutorials online on how to set up your account, but as it’s Google, the sign-up process is easy and straightforward, so if you’re not a computer whiz, there’s no need to worry!

What Can I Do With Google Search Console

Some of the most important and useful features of Google Search Console include:

  • Tracking the performance of specific URLs
  • Checking for site errors or penalisations
  • Submitting your website for indexation manually
  • Exclude pages on your site from the search engine
  • Add a sitemap

All of these actions are designed to make your website easier for Google to understand, and hopefully improve your website’s ranking for relevant search terms. The ability to track specific URLs on your website and ascertain which search terms are sending visitors to your URLs will enable you to finetune your search engine optimisation and focus on optimising for terms that are more successful and eliminate the ones that aren’t working so well. 

Your website will be penalised and therefore be less likely to rank highly in searches if it has a number of broken links, or you’re found to be stuffing your website copy with keywords in order to cheat your way up the rankings. Google Search Console flags up these kinds of issues, enabling you to keep abreast of any issues and rectify them quickly as they arise. After making large changes to your site, Google Search Console enables you to submit the site manually for indexation, meaning Google’s crawlers will get at it quicker, and the changes you’ve put into place will be actioned in terms of your search engine optimisation much faster. 

Through Google Search Console, you are able to instruct Google’s crawlers to ignore certain pages on your website via uploading a robots.txt file that tells the crawlers which page on your site to avoid. This can help your SEO efforts by making sure irrelevant content is not considered when judging your website’s usefulness against competitors. Similarly, uploading a site map gives valuable information to Google’s website crawlers and is crucial for giving your website the best chance of ranking highly.

The Benefits of Google Search Console

Using a free tool such as Google Search Console can be hugely beneficial to your digital marketing efforts – it can help you avoid and quickly rectify mistakes or errors that might otherwise go unnoticed and potentially multiply into a larger problem that’s harder to fix. Not only that, it costs nothing, so it can really help you keep a lid on website costs. While this has been a crash course on how you can get involved with Google Search Console, here at Koncept we’re always on hand to provide you with detailed help and advice on how you can use the online tools to achieve your business goals. For help with any of your website needs, contact Koncept today!

 

Voice controlled computers, once a dream in the heart of every sci-fi enthusiast who has watched a little too much Star Trek, now a reality, although not quite to the same extent. Voice search has exploded since the advent and commercial success of voice-controlled personal assistants. If you ever fancied your own version of Tony Stark’s Jarvis controlling and organising every aspect of your life, well, we might be edging towards that point, albeit incredibly slowly. The appeal of voice search is the convenience – if you have your hands buried in a baking bowl and need to know the next step in your recipe, is it easier to ask Alexa or to smear batter all over your tablet? Just one example, but all signs point to the fact that voice search is here to stay and, not only that, usage is set to soar over the next few years. So, with 2019 around the corner, what better time to ensure your website is ready for the revolution? Koncept have compiled a few top tips to optimise for voice search and future-proof your website.

 

Voice Search 101

Voice Search is a mechanism which enables you to search the web using just your voice. You will no doubt be very familiar with some of the most popular platforms through which to do this: Google Voice Search, Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, and Microsoft Cortana. Users will typically say a “wake” phrase, such as ‘OK, Google’ or ‘Hey, Siri’ and their query will follow after. It’s all about providing convenience to the end user, and the results from a voice search are virtually identical to those garnered through a conventional search. So what is all the fuss about, and why do you need to worry about optimising for this when your site is already optimised for conventional search?

If you were thinking that voice search and virtual assistants are a fad soon to die out, well, you’d be wrong. According to ComScore, by 2020 we could be seeing up to 50% of searches conducted via voice search. It’s just so much easier to say your query into a device than to type it and, while people may initially use it when their hands are full or they can’t reach their device, their usage of voice search will likely steadily increase. At their 2018 event ‘Everyone’s Talking About Voice,’ Head of Design at Apadmi Marcus Duffy said, “Choose something the user was going to do anyway – and make it easier for them.” So, what can you do to ensure you’re not missing out on valuable traffic during the voice search revolution?

 

It’s All About Mobile

 

Person Holding Space Gray Iphone 6

 

Voice search is primarily used on mobile devices. As such, it is crucial that your website is properly optimised for mobiles. If your website is not currently mobile optimised it should be a key consideration in your ongoing marketing strategy. If a website is not optimised for mobile a user will, more than likely, immediately click the back button. This will harm your ranking. The same goes for load times. You are four times more likely to suffer a bounce with a website that loads in five seconds compared to one that loads in one. When thinking about this in the context of a voice search, the likelihood is that someone using voice search is busy and does not have time to wait for a website to load. Make sure your website is fast and mobile friendly and you’ve crossed the first hurdle towards voice search optimisation.

 

Think Local

 

Person Giving Fruit to Another

 

According to Search Engine Watch, voice-related searches are 3x more likely to be local-based than conventional, text searches. It’s incredibly simple to make sure that you don’t miss out on potential customers or sales from local voice searches. Ensure that your Google Business Page is fully up to date with your correct phone number, opening hours and address. Ask your customers or clients to leave favourable reviews and consider joining some local business directories to increase your local online presence.

 

Curate Simple, Sharable Content

 

Flat Lay Photography Blog Scrabble Bricks

 

A study conducted by Backlinko suggests that simple and easy to read content with high levels of social engagement tend to do very well on voice search. In fact, The average Google voice search result is written at the level of a 14-15-year-old. Consider altering your content marketing strategy to include more lightweight blogs and listicles, things that are informative, fun and easy to share, but still relevant to you and your business. If you’re looking for a boost in terms of how much your content gets shared, it might be worth implementing a strategy to increase your social followers to ensure that more of your content gets viewed and shared.

If you need any further help or advice on optimising your website for mobile, or perhaps how to create shareable, exciting content, get in touch with Koncept today and find out how we can help your business.