Changes to Google Search Lead to Improvements in Language Understanding

Changes to Google Search Lead to Improvements in Language Understanding

Posted on Tuesday, October 27th, 2020 at 9:12 pm    

Google made another round of announcements a few days ago and it looks like their latest algorithm, which includes updates to BERT, is getting even better at understanding natural language. These improvements to search mean that the quality of your written content is going to be even more important.

Let your McAllen digital marketing experts at Cobalt Digital breakdown exactly what Google announced and how this can potentially affect your website and marketing efforts.

Quick Overview of BERT

Google’s BERT, or Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers, is a neural network-based system for natural language processes. The purpose of BERT is to help the search engine better understand the nuances of language and context so that results are better aligned with queries. Ultimately, the goal is for BERT is to understand the complexities and subtleties of language just like a human would.

When BERT was launched a year ago, it was only being used on one out of every ten English searches. In its recent announcement, Google said that BERT is now being used on nearly every English query. This should improve the quality of results for searches.

The Beauty of Language

Spelling

One of Google’s most interesting announcements is that its new spelling algorithm will improve the search engine’s ability to decipher misspellings. With one in every 10 queries misspelled, this update will definitely prove to be beneficial for Google users.

This isn’t a service level improvement either. Google stated that “this single change makes a greater improvement to spelling than all of our improvements over the last five years.” Now that’s a big difference in “did you mean” tech.

Passages

Another reason to make sure the quality of content and information you’re providing on your website is up to par, Google is now able to index passages on a page, not just the overall page. This update to their algorithm will impact 7% of search results.

As Google puts it, “By better understanding the relevancy of specific passages, not just the overall page, we can find that needle-in-a-haystack information [users are] looking for.”

Subtopics

Context is so important in search and being able to obtain a greater diversity of results can meaningfully improve the experience of a user. That’s why Google has applied neural nets to delve deeper into the subtopics around a given topic.

As Google explains it, “If you search for ‘home exercise equipment,’ we can now understand relevant subtopics, such as budget equipment … and show a wider range of content for you on the search results page.”

While this component isn’t yet activated, Google claimed that they’ll start rolling this out by the end of this year.

More Than Just Language

Furthering the reach of their AI, Google is improving their ability to understand deep semantics of videos so that viewers can quickly find key moments. The search engine giant will be using this tech to tag important moments in a video so that they can be navigated like chapters in a book.

It’s expected that 10 percent of searches on Google will use this new tech by the end of the year. But as can be seen with BERT, this update can have profound effects within a year.

Another extremely interesting component that’s going to likely play an even bigger role in the months to come is Google Maps popular time algorithm. With the pandemic changing the world of business so much, Google has decided to make its network more reliable by providing up-to-date information on businesses. For instance, soon Google users will be able to see exactly how busy a business is, popular hours, and what safety requirements and protocols they may have in place to protect clients against COVID-19.

This means that you’ll want to make sure your information is updated and accurate on your Google business profile. By being on top of this component on the backend, you’ll be able to provide your customers (and potential customers) with the information they need to visit you at a time that best fits their expectations.

The Value of Copy & Content

Google knows the power of language, so it’s in your best interest to make sure that your copy and content is up to par. By delivering valuable, informative, and quality content – such as blogs, articles, and general website content – you’ll be able to meet the needs and answer the questions of your audience.

Of course, this is always easier said than done.

Luckily, the team at Cobalt Digital Marketing has just the thing to support you.

With our Cobalt Formula™, you can get the expertise of our exceptional Cobalt content creators who know how to write engaging copy and deliver valuable content. Not only can our team help to deliver outstanding website copy that will ensure you meet the parameters of Google’s updated algorithm, but we know how to create fantastic blogs, articles, landing pages, and white papers, while ALSO getting you found on Google.

With content catalysts, SEO experts, and Google-certified analytics partners, we’ll make sure you get found.

 

[maxbutton id=”2″ text=”Request a FREE Quote” ]


Google’s Recent Glitch Disrupts Search Results

Posted on Monday, August 17th, 2020 at 10:01 pm    

Rumblings that Google was unveiling a new variable to their search results algorithm were at an all time high recently when their search engine experienced what the company called a “glitch”.

The glitch resulted in poor search results and, in some instances, did not make sense to what the user was searching for. Thus, many within the SEO community believed that Google was in the process of launching a new update to their search algorithm since it led to the disruption of search results and impacted many page rankings.

Many digital marketing agencies had to discern whether rumors of an update to Google’s SEO search algorithm would come to fruition; however, it didn’t take long for the company to address the issue.

What the Glitch Means

Ultimately, for Google, the glitch was just a disruption to their search results inquiries. Even if there were a planned update to their algorithm, the tech giant is known for guarding what exactly is implemented into their algorithm closely, so while the glitch had many of us wondering if a new update was coming, Google emphatically denied the claim.

The company tweeted that they found a problem with their indexing systems that affected Google search results. After identifying the issue, Google put their site reliability engineers to work in order to fix the problem. Moments later, everything is in optimal working order for the company’s search engine, however, many still can’t help to wonder if Google really did have something up their sleeve.

We’ll just have to take Google’s word for it. The glitch was just a disruption to Google search results page and the company looked to get a hold of things quickly, and things appear to be fine now. Blame it on 2020.

However, this isn’t the first time that Google has experienced a glitch with their search engine results. Earlier this summer, another glitch prevented new content from being indexed in Google search. Last summer, a search issue prevented results from fully populating search engine result pages for a number of users over several days.    

What This Means for Your Business

Anytime there is a disruption with Google’s search algorithm, it impacts your business. If you’re in the business of making the best sushi rolls in town and someone is searching for your restaurant on Google during such a glitch, they may end up with a recipe for baked beans, no matter how well done your SEO is.

Much like when an electric company addresses a power outage, so too must we wait for Google to fix these issues as no amount of SEO will get your site ranked in its proper position during a glitch. In order to prepare, however, it’s best to review your digital marketing plan to ensure that it’s ranking potential is high when the search engine returns back to normal.

Google did a great job of identifying and fixing the issue in a timely manner this time. Albeit, while it can negatively impact your business for that particular moment, a reputable digital marketing agency can be on top of any issues that may arise with Google, Bing, Yahoo, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and so on.

Glitches happen but our Cobalt Formula™ assures that our clients are minimally effected. SEO is important and should be done right but it is just one tactic is our lead generating formula.

 

[maxbutton id=”3″]


Google Adds User Experience as a Ranking Factor

Posted on Monday, August 17th, 2020 at 9:58 pm    

Google has announced a new algorithm, the Google Page Experience update that is set to launch in 2021. The objective of this update is to effectively analyze how web pages perform correlated to how users are experiencing it. Consequential? Most definitely. Reason for concern? Not with Cobalt Digital Marketing by your side.  

Even if you don’t have the skills to make your website more user friendly, our McAllen digital marketing agency can help you to develop a fully optimized website that takes user experience (UX) to the next level. 

In layman’s terms, if Google’s algorithm determines that users visiting your website are having a subpar experience engaging with your pages, then this can negatively affect your rankings. But since the rollout won’t begin until next year, now is a good time to start preparing for the update.

User Experience a New Google Ranking Factor

Some of the current metrics Google has in place include proactively measuring whether your page loads quickly, how users are guided through a specific page on your website, copy, and content, if your website is mobile-friendly, its security, whether content jumps around while the page loads, and the detection of too many ads.

Google search ranking factors compromise page experience and include several variables. Chief among them are page speed update, the intrusive interstitials penalty, the HTTPS ranking boost, safe browsing penalty, mobile penalty update, along with polishing the metrics concerning speed and usability.

The better these variables perform, the more enjoyable the user experience will be for visitors who come to your website. When these variables perform at an optimal level, they usually result in a higher ranking for pages on your website.

Google measures refinements with a tool they call core web vitals. 

Core Web Vitals 101

User-centered metrics consist of real-world core web vitals that evaluate the features of your web pages involving the steadiness of content as it loads, the time it takes, and interactivity. 

They fall under three metrics: 

  • Largest contentful paint – The speed of loading performance that should happen within 2.5 seconds of visitation. 
  • First input delay – An interactivity measure that should give a good user experience of fewer than 100 milliseconds.
  • Cumulative layout shift – A visually appealing metric in which your page should fall below 0.1.   

Prepping for the Google Page Experience Update

While the update isn’t going to happen instantly, Google is giving everyone a fair warning that it plans to put a critical emphasis on user experience to judge the content on your pages. 

Excellent content on your website will still be imperative when it comes to your SEO ranking on Google. If you’re familiar with the previously mentioned web design jargon, then you should be able to pull off any necessary updates to your page effectively. 

However, if you aren’t capable of doing so, teaming up with an experienced, reputable marketing agency would not only be a wise move but a priceless investment. 

Industry research and studies have explained just how important great user experience is to website visitation. It’s not alarming to many digital marketing agencies that Google will add user experience to its algorithm. The addition of user experience as a barometer metric comes on the heels of other variables such as mobile-friendliness and load speed in recent years. 

 

Need help with ramping up your user engagement to standards, improving SEO, or your digital marketing presence in general? Cobalt Digital Marketing can help you with all your online marketing needs with our Cobalt Formula™ that delivers proven results. 

[maxbutton id=”2″]


Set Special Hours With Google My Business

Posted on Monday, June 22nd, 2020 at 5:18 pm    

Many of life’s lessons are layered in silver linings. For many of us, these uncertain times have taught us that we just need to refocus our vision. The current COVID-19 pandemic has forced many customers to shop online–whether it’s for retail therapy or obtaining much-needed essentials–using their purchasing power as a means to adjust to their everyday lives.

From buying cars to online curbside pickup, the scope of how businesses work and cater to customers has definitely shifted. In fact, online sales have surged over the course of the stay-at-home orders the nation had in place, and with so many consumers getting accustomed to buying products online, that eCommerce momentum isn’t going to decline any time soon, even as we slowly reopen many facets of the economy.

The best thing your business can do is to capitalize on this momentum and start mapping out an online strategy to get these buyers to be aware of your brand and your product. There are many simple measures a business owner can take such as replying to reviews, maintaining an updated website and social media page, and even making sure their hours on Google My Business are up to date.

How to Optimize Your Hours for Google My Business 

Business owners should be aware that Google has premiered a new category within Google My Business that will allow them to set more hours for their company. These hours are characterized by types of hours, such as when supermarkets offer early morning hours for specific customers, specific access times a physician is available, or special pickup hours at a given business.

You can go into your Google My Business account and click on the tab labeled “Info,” go under your main hours, and you can select the option that will allow you to set “More Hours.” You then can select the pencil edit button to pick from a category of hours that includes access, brunch, delivery, drive-thru, happy hours, kitchen, pickup, takeout, and senior hours. With this tool, you have plenty of flexibility to set those hours by day, even if they occur at various times throughout the same day.

Always Looking Out for You, Especially During These Uncertain Times

With this update to Google My Business, your customers are now aware of any special hours that you have installed specifically for them when they look you up on Google, helping facilitate business during those hours. This update from Google is a boon to your business, especially during these uncertain times.

While this is an activity that you can do on your own, aligning yourself with a marketing company that knows how to reach both customers and potential consumers can be an effective way to not only implement the Google My Business special hours update but help you strategize other facets of your overall digital marketing strategy as well.

 

Cobalt Digital Marketing can help you optimize your Google My Business account, along with any other digital marketing needs, through our proven Cobalt Formula™. 

Contact Us Today


Protect Your Business Operations From the Coronavirus With These Recommendations From Google

Posted on Tuesday, March 17th, 2020 at 9:11 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]

As we are continuing to monitor the current state of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on a day-to-day basis, the McAllen digital marketers of Cobalt Digital Marketing are coming up with the proper solutions within our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ in order to protect our clients’ needs throughout this worldwide pandemic.

Rightfully so, many businesses across Texas and the United States are taking the necessary precautions and sanitary protocols in order to prevent the spread of the illness. This includes everything from lowering the hours of operation, sanitizing their environment every so often, and minimizing certain services.

Additionally, Google sent out an email to Google My Business users in regards to what protocols business owners should take during this time period within their listings. With this being said, we would like to take this opportunity to highlight the steps Google is recommending for fellow business owners to take in order to ensure their customers are aware of any changes made because of COVID-19.

Update Your Business Operation Information

With so many families and individuals relying on the internet and other forms of media to be kept up to date with any COVID-19 updates, Google has sent out an email to business owners urging them to update any necessary information in regards to the coronavirus affecting their operations.

In order to give out the most accurate information to its customers during this pandemic, the following listings should be updated via Google My Business:

  • Hours of Operation: If your business is minimizing its hours of operation or customer capacity, it is crucial to update this information online so your customers can be aware of the changes.
  • Business Descriptions: Updating your business descriptions will help notify your customers if there are any changes in operations and/or delays due to COVID-19.
  • Phone Number: This is only if there is a change in the phone number. If this information is already in place, no further action is required.
  • Coronavirus-Related Posts: It is recommended to create posts notifying your customers about any changes made to your business that are going into effect as well as any protocols and/or extra services provided in order to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

In addition, the World Health Organization (WHO) and Google have teamed up to launch its “Do The Five” coronavirus prevention campaign in order to inform its users of the essential steps we all need to take to prevent the spread of the disease:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Maintain at least 3 feet from anyone sneezing or coughing, a.k.a. social distancing.
  • Avoid touching your face, including the nose, eyes, and mouth.
  • Cough into your elbow, if needed.
  • Stay at home if you feel sick, and seek medical attention early on, if needed. 

Cobalt Digital Marketing: Always Looking Out for Your Health and Your Business

At Cobalt Digital Marketing, part of our award-winning Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ is to stay on top of all of the recent changes made in digital marketing, regardless if made by Google updates or shifting global events. Your health and safety is our priority, and we want to ensure that communication between you and your customers remains intact during these scary times.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_padding=”||0px|||”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off” custom_padding=”0px|||||”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]


The Shocking Importance of Click-Through-Rate: Everything You Need to Know (And Tantalizing Tips to Improve It)

Posted on Saturday, February 15th, 2020 at 4:26 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row custom_padding_last_edited=”on|desktop” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” custom_padding=”||0px||false|false” custom_padding_tablet=”||30px||false|false”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ z_index_tablet=”500″ text_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” text_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” text_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” link_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” link_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” link_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” ul_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” ul_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” ul_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” ol_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” ol_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” ol_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” quote_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” quote_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” quote_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_2_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_2_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_2_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_3_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_3_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_3_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_4_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_4_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_4_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_5_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_5_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_5_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_6_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_6_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_6_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px”]

Organic click-through-rate, or organic CTR, refers to the percentage of search engine users who click on a specific link during a search query. CTR is one of the main ways of measuring your digital marketing efforts on search engine result pages, emails, web ads, and other forms of content. Like any other form of data analytics, it isn’t enough just to understand the CTR percentage for a given link, page, ad, or website – you then have to utilize that information to make meaningful strategy adjustments that will help to get users to engage with your content or visit your website. At Cobalt Digital Marketing, our proprietary Cobalt Formula helps you dive deep into your data analytics to ensure that your search engine marketing is getting the results and conversions you need to acquire new customers and drive higher revenue. Click-through-rate is a key SEO metric and by understanding how CTR works, you can make strategic adjustments that have an immediate impact on your digital marketing efforts and bottom line.  

What does the research say about CTR?

Because click-through rate is such an important metric, digital marketers spend a lot of time tracking changes to search engine algorithms to understand how they will affect CTR and rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs). Generally speaking, the higher you rank in a search engine query, the more people will click on your link and the higher your CTR will be, which will help you move even higher up in the rankings. Research conducted by Backlinko used massive amounts of search engine query data to understand, by the numbers, how CTR is affected by SEO techniques, tactics, and strategies. The study provides invaluable data about CTR and what it means for digital marketers in 2020:

  • The top result of Google’s organic search has an average 31.7% CTR and is 10X more likely to be clicked on than a link that ranks 10th. What this means is that if your company is investing in SEO, then you should aim for the top spot or don’t aim at all. Of course, that’s not always possible because your competitors are also investing in SEO, but no company stays at the top spot forever and they can be replaced by you if you have the right strategy (for help with this, consider using our Cobalt Formula for digital marketing).
  • The organic click-through-rates for spots 7 through 10 on a search page are relatively equal. In other words, it’s crowded at the bottom so always try to stay on top. Moving up one spot in search rankings can boost your CTR by 30.8%, but this also depends on your position. Moving from the #3 spot to the #2 spot is a major boost, but moving from #10 to #9 not so much, simply because few people scroll down farther than the #3 search result (in fact, the top three results get 75% of all clicks).
  • There are many small SEO techniques that can help boost your search engine rankings and CTR and help drive new business. Simply by framing a title tag as a question, for example, you can increase CTR by up to 14.1%. The number of characters in your title tag can also make a big difference. Titles with 15 to 40 characters have an 8.6% higher CTR than those with more (or less) characters. It’s also important to use keywords and even emotional language (“Get Awe-Inspiring Results”) that grabs peoples’ attention and will get more of them to click. In fact, CTR climbs by 45% when a keyword is included in the URL because it shows people that you have exactly what they need. This is what SEO is all about.
  • On the other hand, implementing a ‘power word’ (Amazing, Ultimate, Powerful), into the title tag can often negatively impact CTR and decrease it by 13.9%. It is important to have an SEO strategy that uses best practices in all areas of digital marketing, including copywriting. Our agency is fully integrated to provide the full-stack of marketing techniques, from copywriting to web design, to make sure you have the best possible digital marketing strategy.
  • When it comes to the more-specific SEO tactics, meta descriptions on the page can also make link clicks rise by up to 5.8%. While meta descriptions are not always used by Google, these short “previews” of text and content provide SEO optimized copy in the event that Google does use it. Otherwise, Google just pulls text from the link and it may or may not be SEO optimized or have the right keywords. Wherever you can, focus on copywriting that gets to the point and shows search engine users that your company has exactly what they need – if they just click on the link.

How an Increased CTR can benefit you.

An increase in organic click-through-rate should be an immediate priority for any business and serves two functions:

  1. The more clicks a link gets, the more traffic a site generates. A click-through-rate that increases from 10 to 20 percent generates double the amount of site traffic. Again, CTR is one of the most important (and also one of the easiest) ways to improve your digital marketing efforts.
  2. Click-through-rate can have a cyclical effect, as users are much more likely to click on your link the higher up you are in the results. The higher you are, the more clicks you get, which helps you keep moving up higher. It’s all about keeping up with search engine algorithms and making adjustments to your SEO tactics on an ongoing basis. If you are committed to increasing your CTR and search engine ranking, it will show up in the results. 

In order to grab the attention of your target audience, your links need to be SEO optimized, have the right keywords, with the right tags and descriptions, the right character length, and even the right creative finesse (this is where copywriters play an invaluable role). In other words, there is a proven methodology for increasing CTR, it just takes a little time and effort to implement it.

How can Cobalt Digital Marketing deliver?

Our McAllen digital marketing agency has the essential strategies needed to improve your organic click-through-rate. Our SEO specialists, content creators, and PPC team know exactly which methods will draw the most attention to your links.  We also offer help personalizing websites that fit your brand and promote the strengths of your business. If you wish to maximize the effectiveness of your advertisement, organic click-through-rates are the way to go. Let us help you build a unique website and attention-getting link that will raise your site traffic, ultimately bringing in new clients to your business.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ z_index_tablet=”500″ text_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” text_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” text_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” link_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” link_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” link_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” ul_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” ul_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” ul_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” ol_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” ol_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” ol_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” quote_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” quote_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” quote_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_2_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_2_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_2_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_3_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_3_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_3_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_4_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_4_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_4_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_5_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_5_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_5_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” header_6_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” header_6_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” header_6_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]


Quality Trumps Quantity & Other Tips to Handle Google’s Core Updates

Posted on Friday, September 13th, 2019 at 11:05 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″ custom_padding=”||0px|||”][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]

In the fast-changing world of digital marketing, companies notice quickly (and nervously) when their website pages get “demoted” in Google search rankings. This nervousness is understandable because a high Google ranking is crucial to attracting visitors, subscribers, and ultimately, customers. The stats don’t lie when it comes to digital marketing:

  • The vast majority (87%) of shoppers begin their product searches online.
  • 81% of B2B purchasers search for content before they speak to a vendor.
  • Three out of four Google users never click past the first page of search results.

Today’s search-dependent (and time-strapped) users have to trust Google’s search algorithms to provide the most relevant, authoritative, and well-designed content on page one. Google takes this trust seriously and releases thousands of algorithm changes a year, and several “core updates” to fine-tune its results. A lower ranking following a core update doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve fallen behind in digital marketing, it just means Google has tweaked its product to make it better for users.

Here are some tips for improving or maintaining your site’s ranking when Google makes these core updates to its algorithms.

Focus on Quality Content and Best Practices

Rather than panicking every time your website gets demoted, Google advises companies to focus on the core goal of content marketing and search engine optimization. It’s not about riding the temporary ups and downs that occur naturally whenever there is a core update. At the end of the day, it’s about providing quality content that demonstrates Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (or E-A-T) and doing so on a consistent basis.

In a blog post explaining its latest June 2019 core update, Google compares search engine rankings to an ever-changing list of “best movies”:

“One way to think of how a core update operates is to imagine you made a list of the top 100 movies in 2015. A few years later in 2019, you refresh the list. It’s going to naturally change. Some new and wonderful movies that never existed before will now be candidates for inclusion. You might also reassess some films and realize they deserved a higher place on the list than they had before. The list will change, and films previously higher on the list that move down aren’t bad. There are simply more deserving films that are coming before them.”

In other words, a great movie is a great movie is a great movie, even if a greater movie comes along in the future. Likewise in digital marketing, the best practice is always to produce great content that is as good or better than the current top 10 search results. Nobody stays in the top 10 forever; there is always great new content being created.

If your company is consistently producing top-notch content, then you don’t have to be overly concerned when a core update drops you lower in the rankings. Just keep doing what you’re doing by producing content that is fresh and adheres to E-A-T standards.

A digital marketing agency like Cobalt can help make sure you stay ahead of the pack with new content that maintains these best practices and helps shift the ranking order once again — with your company back at the top.

Focus on Brand, Not Just Pages and Content

Not only is content still king in 2019, but the way people consume and engage content has changed dramatically from even a few years ago. Users are more heavily influenced by their social media feeds and are more likely to engage content if they follow a brand on social media. Think of it this way ⁠— you are more likely to stop and chat with someone on the street if you’ve seen them before or know that they have similar interests.

SEO is still vitally important, and an important part of what we do as a digital marketing agency, but ultimately, SEO is a technique for computers and marketers, not for real people. Nobody searches for sneakers or attorneys while thinking about metatags and word counts. This is how digital marketers and search engines think about content, but real people are thinking about content as an extension of the brand.

Does your content make users excited about your brand and products? Is the content informative and well-presented? Does it feel authoritative and make users want to make a purchase or pick up a phone then and there, without looking around for other search results? These are the sorts of questions that help determine how users will engage content and how the search engines will rank websites and webpages going forward. (Google has provided a longer list of questions at its blog to help you adjust content production to ongoing changes to its algorithms).

Google’s core updates and other algorithm changes (in one year the company made 3,200) are evolving along with how users engage content. If your brand shines through your content, then users will keep coming back even if you’re a little lower in the search results. In fact, they’ll seek your brand out apart from Google, follow you on Facebook, and subscribe to your blog updates. SEO will always be important, but brand presence is becoming much more of a factor in your site’s ranking.

Partner with a Digital Marketing Agency for Better Results

There are some things only your company can do, such as defining what your brand stands for and making sure your content is consistent with these values. But the actual mechanics of producing great content on a consistent basis is a full-time job that requires the expertise and resources of a great digital marketing agency.

Google will continue making regular updates to its core search ranking algorithms, and a digital marketing agency can help you stay on top of these. But just as importantly, digital marketers can combine the technical aspects of SEO with the creative aspects of branded content and adhering to best E-A-T practices. Digital marketing is an art and Cobalt is dedicated to helping our clients get to the top of the rankings ⁠— and stay there.

If you are ready to invest in your business’ future by taking the plunge into digital marketing, no one does it better than Cobalt Digital Marketing. Armed with our award-winning Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ, our catalysts have the experience and creative chops needed to keep you ranking high on Google.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_padding=”||0px|||” locked=”off”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off” custom_padding=”0px|||||”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]


Google Adds New Options to Google My Business Just in Time for the Holiday Season

Posted on Monday, November 26th, 2018 at 3:48 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” custom_padding=”||0px|||”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]

Not long ago, we analyzed some changes that occurred to Google My Business.

Now the search engine giant is once again causing waves by adding – and improving on – new features to the platform. Of course, part of what makes our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ so effective is how extensively our Cobalt Digital Marketing catalysts comb the Internet for any bit of information that will get our clients those crucial holiday leads.

This time, we are turning our gaze to these changes to Google My Business and analyzing how they can positively affect your business.

What is Google My Business?

Just as a refresher, Google My Business (GMB) is an app developed by Google that helps businesses improve website user experiences when they do a local search. For example in GMB’s Q&A, customers are allowed the opportunity to ask questions about a particular business via their profile.

It even allows business owners to pin frequently asked questions along with the top answers. This is extremely convenient for potential clients and has numerous benefits for business owners as well.

For instance, if your hours of operation will be changing during the holiday season, GMB allows you to plug in the updated hours directly to your business profile, informing customers that are performing a quick Google search.

Other key features are being implemented to will make the life of a business owner just a bit easier.

What Was Recently Added?

This time around GMB has done it again, streamlining the updating process for Business Profiles on Google and managing what search engine users see when they look up your business online.

Yet, the most game-changing update occurred to a feature that has been around for a while.

Google Posts was released last year as Google’s answer to social media searches because more business search activity was being conducted through Facebook than through Google search. With Google Posts, organizations were granted the ability to create a brief update which would then be listed in Google searches.

Now, Google Posts is becoming a hot item to use in your 2018 digital marketing arsenal because, with a press of a new Post button in the app, you can upload photos and create enticing offers or other types of events and upload them to your Business Profile. Let’s not forget that you can also still manage and upload new business information on Google from the Profile tab – it’ll even update across Search and Maps.

Not only was Google Posts improved upon, but a new “Customers” tab has also been added as well.

This nifty little tab allows you to respond to customer reviews, post current offers to entice clients, and, in time, will also allow you to respond in real time from your own device. The notifications system will also inform you when a new customer connects with your business.

The last major addition that was implemented in the recent update: how people connect with your business. This presentation improvement to the home screen is a digital marketer’s dream, giving crucial data and insights—relevant metrics and statistics presented in a Google Analytics style—of where these connections are coming from.

From there, you can tailor a masterful campaign to further attract clients through that medium or improve on another that may not be performing at an optimal state.

As Google works to make your life as a business owner easier, our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ continues to create big returns for our clients’ investment.

Digital marketing is blowing traditional forms of advertising out of the water, and with Cobalt Digital Marketing and our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ, you get for what you pay for: experienced digital marketers that have a proven track record of creating big returns that their clients can truly appreciate.

 

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_padding=”||0px|||” locked=”off”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off” custom_padding=”0px|||||”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]


Overcoming the Scary Parts of Google Ranking with the Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ

Posted on Thursday, November 1st, 2018 at 3:42 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]Want to know what spooks a digital marketer more than low conversion rates? When their Google rankings tank and they don’t know why.

It can happen to business owners and digital marketers alike if they aren’t keeping up with all the changes that occur over the course of a few months or even a few weeks. One little tweak to Google’s algorithm can send your website down in rank, taking your money-earning opportunities along with it.

But you don’t have to worry about that when you subscribe to our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ. At Cobalt Digital Marketing, you have dedicated catalysts at the ready, anticipating Google changes and preparing your website to weather the storm.

But what does that mean for you as a business owner? Glad you asked…

Google Updates ALL. THE. TIME.

One of the great things about Google’s search engine is how it stays innovative and fresh on a daily basis. That’s because the Google search algorithm is updated between 500 to 600 times a year. If you do the math, that comes out to approximately once or twice a day.

While this may seem a bit excessive, it is what keeps the search engine above the rest.

Now, consider this. If your marketing team has limited knowledge of what these changes mean, lack the tools necessary to monitor fluctuations in website traffic, or don’t have the skills to make the appropriate changes (or even all three), your revenue-generating opportunities will dry up like an ancient mummy in some forgotten tomb in Egypt.

That’s why you need the Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ. A meaningful portion of our formula involves anticipation and adaptation.

Our catalysts anticipate the change to minimize impacts on our clients’ websites and digital marketing plan by employing research day in and day out.

Once we are confident that changes are coming by confirming and reconfirming with our monitoring tools, we draft a solid plan to ensure that our clients not only maintain a first page ranking stay but also benefit from improved ranking.

And one of the many ways we do that is through SEO.

Spooky Isn’t the ‘S’ in SEO

Aside from monitoring and adapting to Google changes in algorithm and ranking, another component of our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ is reflected through our search engine optimization (SEO) services.

Briefly, and roughly, speaking, SEO is a practice that considers (and employs) many search engine ranking factors in an effort to keep a website visible, i.e. keeping your website on the front page of the search engine results page where the majority of users will look. With Google, that is over 200 factors.

Part of what makes Cobalt Digital Marketing effective is how we can shift our SEO strategy on a moment’s notice in order to maximize potential revenue streams for our clients, despite the many factors to consider.

What’s Going On Right Now with Google Algorithm?

The metaphorical “Google waters” have been churning a bit as of recent, showing upward and downward fluctuations over the past few weeks. While most of the automated tools aren’t showing much to be concerned about, many of the digital marketing, webmastering, and IT communities are acting as if they have seen a ghost.

Webmasters have claimed that the traffic to their website has decreased from anywhere between 50 to 90 percent. While this should alarm many in our industry, we remain unfazed.

A lot of the speculation that is going on in the rumor mill is that these changes have occurred to websites that either over-optimized and/or employed the use of black hat SEO. These strategies usually go against search engine terms of service because they try, in some fashion, to “game the system.”

Of course, this is all just conjecture at this point as Google has yet to confirm anything regarding the activity, but as always, we are watching.

Google is always changing. Enlist the aid of the digital marketing experts at Cobalt Digital Marketing to tame the beast.

Our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ is not just some sort of witch’s brew. It is a tried and true formula that we here at Cobalt Digital Marketing have crafted over the years to develop the best search optimization practices, social marketing strategies, digital ad campaigns, content creation – you name it.

Google constantly changes, and in order to be the best, you have to adapt and evolve. Contact us at (866) 224-5705 for more information on how our Cobalt Formulaᵀᴹ can better help your business today.
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_padding=”||0px|||” locked=”off”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off” custom_padding=”0px|||||”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]


Make Your Event Bigger and Better: Promote with Cobalt Digital Marketing

Posted on Wednesday, October 10th, 2018 at 5:39 pm    

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.22″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.25″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.25″ custom_padding=”|||” custom_padding__hover=”|||”][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]


Digital marketing has quickly become one of the most effective methods of drawing attention to your trade show, conference, or event. When done correctly, you can increase your attendance rate, expand your reach, build community, manage ticket sales, and essentially make your event bigger and better.

But, truth be told, it’s a little easier said than done. There’s plenty of strategizing that must take place in order to properly promote your event. Naturally, you’ll want a dedicated team of marketing professionals to handle this undertaking, especially if you don’t have the experience of doing so yourself.

That’s where the experts at Cobalt Digital Marketing come in. We’ve helped numerous companies and organizations promote and market their event to the fullest extent possible – and we can do the same for you.

In fact, we recently wrapped up one of our biggest successes; the McAllen Chamber of Commerce chose Cobalt Digital Marketing as the digital marketing agency to promote their 2018 Business Expo.

 

About the McAllen Business Expo

The McAllen Business Expo is the region’s premier business event, bringing together hundreds of businesses and entrepreneurs, and thousands of attendees. The goal of the Business Expo is to provide outstanding networking opportunities, learning experiences, and professional business seminars, all while furnishing the perfect setting for the showcasing, advertising, and selling of products and services.

As the leading business expo in the Rio Grande Valley, our team at Cobalt Digital Marketing understood that the promotion for this event had to be bigger and better than any year prior – and that’s exactly what we focused on.

Using a number of initiatives including social media marketing, digital ads, video content marketing, and various other channels, we were able to:

  • Help generate nearly $1,750 in online sales!
  • Update the McAllen Chamber website to include e-commerce capability so that sponsors and exhibitors could register and pay online.
  • Obtain support from expo sponsors to create videos that promoted the event.
  • Sell out all booths 3 entire weeks before the event.
  • Bring together 152 businesses.
  • Reach more than 10,000 people through Facebook Event.
  • Increase McAllen Chamber website traffic by 40% over the same period last year.
  • Increase website traffic by 20% over the previous period (June/July).
  • Reach 100,000 people with display ads.
  • Help to draw in thousands of attendees.

Amazingly, we were able to accomplish these results within an 8-week period by successfully employing the Cobalt Formula™.

You can watch the Chamber’s wrap up video here.

 

Promoting with the Cobalt Formula™

Our objectives for the 2018 McAllen Business Expo was to obtain sponsors, increase attendance, improve event visibility, and secure exhibitors. Through a multi-faceted approach utilizing website marketing, social media marketing, digital ads, and content marketing, we were able to reach our goals.

Tactics

1. Website – As previously mentioned, we updated the Chamber’s website to include capabilities that allowed sponsors to register and pay directly online without the need to sign-up in person. Naturally, this streamlined the process for exhibitors and sponsors, allowing them to focus on their own priorities without having to take time out of their busy schedules to make a trip down to the chamber; for business owners and entrepreneurs, time is of the essence.

2. Facebook – Our social media catalysts developed a Facebook Event page to reach nearly 10,000 individuals through engaging posts, videos, and ads. Additionally, we were able to complement our own efforts by increasing traffic to the McAllen Chamber of Commerce’s own Facebook page, and increased their likes by nearly 200 people. This two-front approach helped us to reach even more people than originally anticipated and gave the McAllen Chamber of Commerce a vital boost that should help them in their promotion of next year’s event.

3. Instagram – The value of social media cannot be overstated and our social media team had the creative idea to not only leverage Instagram but also develop a real-life Instagram frame with tie-in hashtags to generate interest and buzz around the event. During the period of September 6th through the 12th, we reached 858 unique accounts and an astounding 5378 impressions.

4. Display ads – We took advantage of Facebook ads to strategically target and promote to our audience. We reached over 100,000 people with an economical cost-per-click of only $0.29.

5. On-going promotion – Our entire social media team attended the event to continue engaging our audience. We went from booth to booth and attendee to attendee, capturing live video, photos, and boomerangs that have since been used to develop quality content on Instagram and Facebook even after the event ended, drawing further attention to the expo and the McAllen Chamber. We also created a number of articles to continue showcasing all the wonderful happenings of the 2018 McAllen Business Expo.

We understood that our responsibility to this project was not going to stop once the event had taken place. We were dedicated to ensuring that we saw the promotion of the event all the way through and that’s why we have continued to promote content to already begin preparing for next year’s event. A year really does fly by and we want to make sure that our reach is even bigger in 2019.

 

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_padding=”||0px|||” locked=”off”]

Our Cobalt Formula™ can help your business prosper, reach one of our catalysts today at (866) 224-5705.

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_button button_url=”/contact-us” button_text=”Contact Cobalt Digital Marketing Now” button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.26.6″ custom_button=”on” button_text_color=”#ffffff” button_bg_color=”#101a35″ button_border_color=”#101a35″ z_index_tablet=”500″ button_text_shadow_horizontal_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_vertical_length_tablet=”0px” button_text_shadow_blur_strength_tablet=”1px” box_shadow_horizontal_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_vertical_tablet=”0px” box_shadow_blur_tablet=”40px” box_shadow_spread_tablet=”0px” locked=”off” custom_padding=”0px|||||”][/et_pb_button][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]