Digital Marketing by the sea: welcome to BrightonSEO
By Marion Hirtzig - Head of Digital Marketing.
I had the chance to go to BrightonSEO for the second time, last week, and I can say it gets even better with time. I love digital marketing conferences because they are a great opportunity to learn new things, meet new people and exchange ideas. We have published other post-conference blogs, on SES London, SearchLove, and on the September edition of BrightonSEO, if you’re interested, have a read! There is so much information and there are so many talks by talented speakers that it's always tricky to sum things up; this is why this time I have decided to share with you 21 (random) things I will take away from BrightonSEO.
1) '10 things' blogs remain popular
‘+5 things’ blogs are definitely not dead, and apparently 21 is a good number;
2) Female Digital Marketers Lunch
If you're a female digital marketer, the Female Digital Marketers lunch is a lovely way of meeting fellow SEOs;
3) Raise your Twitter profile easily
If you want to gain followers and get interaction on Twitter, just tweet about the talks and you’ll see the numbers rise; you will also play a role in making #BrightonSEO trend, and that’s always fun!
4) Kelvin Newman likes his props :)
Be it glittery gloves, black boxes or artificial fireplaces (how else would you have a proper “fireside chat” like he did with Apprentice winner Mark Wright?), I haven't seen Kelvin without a prop yet – and I wouldn't dream of the contrary;
5) Fireside talk with The Apprentice winner
During his "fireside talk" with Kelvin Newman, Mark Wright revealed that his original business plan didn't include SEO, but he was told that without SEO or web development, it wouldn’t work;
6) Digital Marketers are a friendly bunch
Digital Marketing may be a competitive business, nevertheless, I haven't met a marketer who wasn't happy to share his knowledge and experience;
7) It’s always best to team up
Bring your colleagues along if you can, it's great to discuss the talks afterwards, and you can attend different talks to get even more out of the conference;
8) Build brands, not links
Build good brands and links will come;
9) PR and SEO are becoming one and the same
The difference between PR and link-building is fading, and the best links you can acquire are by-products of good PR;
10) There is a formula for good content
A good content idea should have the following attributes: simple, unexpected, concrete, credible, emotional, shareable, and telling a story;
11) Pitch ideas, not formats
Don't try to create a video, an infographic or a guide, create an infographic about an idea that has potential to be shared, i.e. that would make the person sharing look good;
12) Some link-building strategies are simple
Simple link-building methodologies include replying to press requests, sponsorship, guest blogs, and also using Reddit and Wikipedia;
13) Monitoring backlinks has several benefits
Checking your competitors' backlinks allows you to find websites that could link to you too, and auditing your own backlinks will help you discover any bad quality backlinks that you may have (buying links isn't dead for everyone);
14) Are we really building websites for the best UX, or for Google?
Google said to build a website for user experience, but let’s be honest, which user would complain about a website lacking hreflang tags? UX definitely is important and we should all try to give our visitors the best UX possible, but in the end we’re really building websites for Google, don’t you agree?
15) Check GWT even if your website is responsive to make sure you’re good for 21st April
If your website is responsive and mobile-friendly by 21st April (Google's announced update) you may not be off the hook, check on Google Webmaster Tools if you follow their guidelines;
16) Mobile: lower rankings may be linked to low conversion rates
Mobile and desktop rankings tend to differ, and this may be due to the fact that mobile conversion for ecommerce is low – 5.8% on average – so if Google thinks a mobile site is not the most relevant result to a query (for instance a purchase-related query) they won't show it high;
17) It’s important to index your Apps
If you have a mobile App, make sure to index it – Google may downgrade your site if they know you have an App;
18) Watch out for fluxes in rankings
If you see a flux in rankings and your website drops for a keyword, look out for cannibalisation, and find out if you don't have competing pages from the same website, domain or brand;
19) Optimise your search pages on ecommerce websites
On ecommerce websites make sure to index your search pages and to optimise them to offer the best user experience possible – they are more likely to convert since search pages offer the visitor a choice, meaning that potential buyers have more chances to find what they are looking for;
20) Make fun competitions
If your competition is fun, you don't need a major prize to encourage people to participate and share;
21) Use enhanced ecommerce on GA to improve the purchase process
Enhanced ecommerce on Google Analytics needs some setting up, but it allows you – among other things – to discover pain points in the purchase process by analysing high “Add to cart” product pages.
I could add quite a few things, like for instance how Majestic and R are undeniably favourites for backlink monitoring and data visualisation respectively, or how many hours can be needed to promote great content and have fab results (about 60...). I will however leave you here, and hope that you enjoyed BrightonSEO as much as I did, if you were one of the lucky ones to get a ticket! If not, do try and get a ticket in September!