Just when you thought you had it down, Google goes and changes their algorithm. If you haven’t yet heard (and I hope you have since this is my second posting on the subject), Google has been behind the scenes modifying their search algorithm to incorporate user behavior. Which means users results will be measured by the users behavior, location and past searches. This is smart from so many angles yet it changes the game significantly for marketers.
I can’t stress enough that first and foremost content is king. I’m not just saying that because I happen to be a content writer. I’m saying it because now more than ever, big brother Google is watching and counting every time someone clicks through to your site from a served up query. So not only must you have great content on your website, but you must also have good content in your page elements. These are what will entice visitors to click through when your site shows up in their search query.
A higher click through rate (CTR) shows Google your site has relevancy. What does this mean for a marketer? That your description tags (the content that shows up in the tid-bit of info in a search query) and title tags should be enticing and relevant to that particular search term so that people actually click through to your site from their search query.
Once they have clicked through, you’ll want them to stay (obviously). It is important to monitor your bounce rate and how much time people spend on your site, as the amount of time a visitor stays on your site is becoming more and more important. Here’s an example. Say a visitor uses the search term “snowboarding in Vermont.” The search engine offers up a particular mountain resort that offers snowboarding and happens to be in Vermont. The user clicks on the link and spends 3-5 minutes on the mountain’s site. This will tell Google that the site is relevant and is more likely to show up again when someone with the same “behavior” clicks on the same search term.
As the search engines keep refining their algorithms they offer a more targeted result to users search queries. This gives us marketers an opportunity to really hone in on our target market and create web content and advertising copy that speaks directly to them. If we do this well, the web crawlers will crawl and visitors will visit and hopefully we all prosper and succeed.