An important capability of an employee at a B2B online marketing agency is the ability to adjust on the fly and be there to offer a helping hand whenever clients might be in a pinch, or simply need some advice. Throughout the years, my colleagues and I field questions from across the online marketing universe in an effort to arm our clients with the knowledge they need to succeed, and to ensure their brand is getting the most out of its online marketing efforts.
With these questions in mind, we decided it would be beneficial to share some of our recent interactions with clients from various industries, and shed some knowledge on common inquiries.
Below are examples of some the most recent (and common) questions we have received from clients pertaining to online marketing in the past few months. Enjoy!
How Does Google Determine Featured Snippet Content and How Can We Show Up?
According to recent industry data, about 12% of keywords (U.S.) return featured snippets in the search result. Of course, depending on the industry and keyword set, this percentage can fluctuate. The bottom line is, we are now seeing more and more keywords and keyword phrases returning a featured snippet result. As such, we have very frequently received questions from clients asking how exactly they can get content in the featured snippets, as well as how Google determines the content to display.
Google states that the featured snippet content is “extracted programmatically from a webpage. When we recognize that a query asks a question, we programmatically detect pages that answer the user’s question, and display a snippet as a featured snippet in the search results.”
Of course, this information is pretty vague, but through experience, we have identified a few key steps to take when attempting to create content for featured snippets.
- Select a Question to Answer: Be sure to work in a keyword phrase with search volume and provide an answer that has some depth. Google automatically displays results for queries such as “What time is it in Florida?”
- Create Relevant Content: Be direct in answering the question. Think “quality over quantity.” The length of the content does not necessarily impact your chances.
- Focus on Structure: Think about using lists on your page when answering “How to” questions and paragraph structure when answering “What” queries.
- Remember SEO Best Practices: Link to reputable sources, create well-optimized title tags and descriptions, and consider Schema markup.
- Be Patient: Google will have to “trust” your content before it is featured. We have seen content appear in featured snippets a year after the original content was published.
Does Keyword Density on a Page Impact Rankings? How Many Times Should We Use a Keyword on a Page?
When asked about keyword density, we believe it really comes down to educating the individual asking the question about how Google’s algorithm has changed, and therefore SEO best practices. At one point in time, keyword density was certainly an influential factor. But, today, Google is much smarter.
If your content doesn’t read naturally, you’re missing the mark. The quality of content is much more important than how many times you include a keyword on a page.
Of course, there are SEO best practices and optimal locations on a page where a keyword should be included (page tagging, heading tag, etc.), but only if it makes sense.
There are a couple of steps we recommend to ensure content sounds as natural as possible when it’s created:
- Always read the copy out loud before publishing
- Ask yourself: does this sentence, phrase or paragraph offer value to the reader?
- Would this sentence, phrase or paragraph make sense without the keyword? Or, would it make more sense with another term?
How Should We Deal With a Product or Company Name Change Pertaining to Online Marketing?
You spend years building a brand, marketing a product, and then, with the click of a button, the name changes. Whether you are a reseller or a company going through a rebrand, this can be a big challenge, specifically for SEO.
When dealing with a rebrand, we face some common challenges:
- Users Still Search the Old Name: In this case, it’s important to still use the old name in the copy but balance brand guidelines as well.
- Brand Continuity: The brand or product will be referred to across the web in many different ways. SEOs need to help organizations update business listings, links, and other copy to maximize continuity.
Other tips to consider if your brand is undergoing a rebrand is to use “formerly” (name of brand or product) in copy where applicable. This will still cover the old name of the product when users are searching, while also pushing the new name forward.
SEOs should also consider creating a page on the website that’s dedicated to providing users and search engines with information about the new brand or product name, specifically noting that an update has been made.
How Much Should I Spend on Google Ads?
Our paid search team gets this question very often. If you find yourself asking this question, consider the following steps to offer initial insights:
- Log into Google Ads keyword planner, which is a free tool.
- Identify high-value terms you want to target and download the historical performance of those keywords.
- Do some research to determine what is the avg. CTR on your industry and multiply that for the estimated monthly visits Google believes you can get per month. The result will be the number of clicks you can get.
- Then, multiply the number of clicks by the estimated CPC Google Ads provided you. This will represent your cost per keyword per month.
- Look at the sum of all the estimated costs, and this will be an initial idea of how much you should spend per month on Google Ads.
Disclaimer: Your cost can be affected by many factors, such as match types, competition, ad rank, and budget, among others.
Can I See My Competitors’ Ads on Social Media?
Due to the Cambridge Analytica scandal and the social media inquiries about transparency during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Facebook is now allowing users to see all active ads linked to a page by following these steps:
- Go to the page you are interested in.
- If you are on a desktop, on the left side menu, you will see info and ads.
- If you are on mobile, you will see an “i” icon in the top right corner where you can find the active ads.
Twitter also launched their Twitter Ads Transparency Center, where you can plug in any username and see their active ads for the past 7 days.
Note that platforms like LinkedIn, Quora and Reddit do not allow you to see competitors’ ads.
The world of search and online marketing is always evolving, leading to questions and much-needed answers. We hope this post helped answer some questions that you may have as your brand embarks on its digital marketing efforts. Keep an eye out for similar posts in the future!