Landing pages are web pages designed for a specific purpose. For the most part the primary goal of a landing page is to encourage a visitor to take an action such as request a quote or make a booking. Landing pages are goal orientated and should be designed to funnel visitors toward achieving that desired goal. However a search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy is imperative to launch a successful landing page campaign. Let’s discuss the key components of such a strategy…
The first step is to create a landing page template that will be designed in a goal orientated fashion. This template should be available in the content management system (CMS) from where the web admin can simply add a new landing page to the website and input the content accordingly. The design of the template should structured in an accessible format peppered with diverse content such as text and multi-media. In essence the landing page should guide the user to the integrated call to action (CTA) – e.g. contact button or sign up form.
The team here at Enhance web design carried out some detailed research into the surrounding SEO elements and best practices associated with landing pages. From our understanding there is no negative connotations associated with landing pages for SEO. However we would stress the landing page must be designed and mapped out optimally and the content must be relevant and engaging, as a high bounce rate on the landing pages will adversely affect the organic search performance of the overall website.
In the world of SEO, landing pages are a key tool to capture long tail search queries. Therefore keyword generation and density are two key components of creating an effective landing page. So we would suggest incorporating distinct keywords throughout the on-page content, in the key headings and even match it up with the image and link anchor text. This combination will provide a strong foundation to attract the right users.
It is important to ensure that a landing page is not a cul-de-sac so to speak. Both internal and external linkages are key from a navigation perspective and from a search engine perspective. Linking off to relevant internal and external relevant content will provide the user with a chance to extend their journey. Furthermore such links make the web page much more accessible to search engines.
So you have put all this effort into creating landing pages and running several campaigns, how do you assess the performance of the landing pages and SEO drive? Well the great thing about landing pages is the extractable analytical data! Landing pages are created for a sole purpose therefore it is relatively easy to create a conversion goal associated with a landing page and derive key stats from the page activity.
Find out more…
If we have sparked your interest and you want to find out more how landing pages can work for SEO read this blog post on seomoz – ‘Landing Pages for SEO‘ by I, Brian
What does search engine optimization (SEO) and an endangered mammal, The Panda, have in common? Absolutely nothing! The Google Panda update was aptly named after the Google software engineer, Navneet Panda, the individual responsible for developing the Google algorithm update. This update has changed SEO forever and has reaffirmed that content is king.
Maybe you were not aware of this but Google is trying to develop an algorithm that is responsive to the human mind rather than a machine. In other words Google wants to present the best search engine results based on human perceptions and engagement. Panda is a major stepping-stone to achieving this ‘ideal’ search engine world.
Panda operates through a machine learning process. In simple terms, the process analyzes a bunch of websites using all kinds of different metrics to try and figure out why people like a website or more significantly why people do not like a website. For example, bounce rates would be a significant metric used by the Panda update. Basically if human users are consistently bouncing (i.e. abruptly leaving) from a website’s landing page on the first impression, a red flag will be raised and the website will subsequently be downgraded in the rankings. In essence the Panda update seeks to discover if a website evokes positive feelings from visitors and this can be measured through user engagement with a website.
So what has the Panda update really changed?
Rand Fishkin and the team at SEOmoz presented a short informative ‘Whiteboard Friday’ video clip about the important issues surrounding the Panda update.
- The design of a website is now more important than ever. The Panda update has put a primary emphasis on the user experience. Websites that engage visitors and websites that are easily accessible and easy to navigate around are key to enhancing the user experience.
- As we all know Google penalizes websites that present duplicate content. The Panda update signifies another significant shift towards the importance of content in relation to SEO. When developing content for your website try to make it as unique as possible by using descriptions, anecdotes, photos, similes and humour etc. If you can create interesting content visitors are more likely to engage with your content and may even go as far as sharing the content. The Panda update will recognize engaging content and reward a website significantly.
- User usage metrics are now more important that ever. Website administrators should optimize their website based on key analytics. For example, Panda will rank your website negatively if visitors are bouncing straight off your website. Alternatively if the visitors continue to browse though the website Google will rank the website favorably. Furthermore low levels of click through rates (CTR) will adversely affect a website’s Google ranking. Optimizing the title of the landing pages, snippet and the domain name will go some way to ensuring that a website does not appear ‘spammy’ in search engine result pages. Panda will even examine the diversity and quantity of traffic coming into the website, for example geo-locations must be consistent and relevant to the website’s ‘target location’. Google analytics is a key tool that will help you optimize your website and keep up to date with Google and the Panda update.
Note: The Panda update recalculates the index metrics every 40 days on average.