Refresh or Rebuild Your Website - Clever Marketing, Hampshire Digital Agency

4: Refresh or Rebuild Your Website

8 Steps to Increase Traffic to Your Website: Part Four

So what happens when you’ve installed the full suite of industry-standard analytics tools, conducted in-depth keyword research and made that all-important audit of your website? Do you need to refresh or rebuild your website?


Most likely you will have found that your website has a lot of flaws. Even if you’ve spent a lot of money on the design, you may have chosen a web design company that hasn’t got a clue about information architecture, keyword and content strategy.

The most beautiful websites may be just that – very good looking but poor performing in search and not particularly easy for the user.

There are so many issues that your website audit will have flagged up that you may be a bit worried to start with. Well…

Don’t Panic!

The first thing to remember is that your audit may have flagged up a lot of issues that aren’t really a big issue. They may be “low hanging fruit” such as you need to enable GZIP compression on your webserver and, voila, you’ve just nailed 500 issues on your “to do” list.

Other problems may be non-secure links, your WordPress site isn’t set up correctly etc etc. There are SO many things that can be wrong with your website but just look at the website objectively.

1. Ascertain if Small Fixes Alone Will Fix Your Website

Is this just a regular long-term Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) job? Do you have to do daily tasks every day to stay on top of the issues?

Good, then keep doing SEO. You will reap the rewards of your hard work. If you get stuck and don’t now where to start or go next then ask us about our SEO services.

You may have a massive laundry list of technical issues that you have to systematically plough through. Once you’ve got to the end of that list your website will still look good but function and perform well too.

However, if small and regular technical SEO fixes alone wont help your website then you may need to look at the next level. Does your website need a refresh?

2. Does Your Website Need a Refresh?

Is there something more than on-page SEO that is needed to boost your website’s performance?

Has your SEO guy (or girl) optimised all the images, title tags and descriptions? Has he or she tweaked the copy and consulted your in-house writers on how to produce great copy?

If it looks perfect but goes slowly have you moved to a new webserver?

Great. But what if your website is five years old now?

Is your design looking a bit tired? Do visitors show up and say “Ugh, that looks a bit 2014″ and you get a massive bounce rate?

Sometimes the fact that your site design is a few years old may the biggest problem. In the last few years there has been a real push towards making websites work better on mobile devices. Only in 2015 did Google say that websites should work on mobile or risk sliding down the rankings. In April that year they started taking mobile-friendly websites as a “ranking signal”. So if you didn’t keep up with that memo than maybe that’s why you’ve suffered.

One thing that can really help, especially with modular Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress is that you can search for and install a new template or theme. These days just a template refresh alone can make a big difference.

But sometimes it takes more than that. A template switch could break your content so you need to do your research, test thoroughly and be as sure as you can before you go live.

3. Does Your Website Need a Rebuild?

If a refresh doesn’t work and new templates make your site look really ugly then there must be something fundamentally wrong with your website’s build.

Maybe it’s time to have a really good look at it and make the decision to get right up to speed with the twenty first century.

Is your website designed for mobiles first and then tablets and desktop computers? Is it easy to navigate? Is everything easy to get to? Does your site load quickly? Are the images fresh and appealing? Can visitors easily get in touch? Is the whole User Experience (UX) an absolute breeze?

No?

Then this is when you need to seriously sit down and decide what you want to do to drive your business forward.

Decide on your structure, the information architecture. Make your website as logical and easy to navigate as your local library. Because that’s all it is ultimately – A well-organised repository of information.

It may be full of pretty pictures, videos, audio and downloads too but you want your website to reflect your business, present it in the best light and be an excellent experience for your users.

Rip it up and start again works for many websites. Otherwise it can be just like putting lipstick on a pig.

Rebuilding websites can be hard work if you’re not sure about it. But if you consult with Clever Marketing we will let you know whether you need regular SEO, a refresh or a complete website rebuild. We’ll advise on how to structure your website, what content to create or revise and our designers and developers will make it look good and feel good too.

All of these tasks are a serious undertaking so you have to get each one of them right. That’s where our Hampshire digital agency can do the heavy lifting for you and we are happy to do your SEO & PPC, and be your designers and developers.


Clever Marketing - Hampshire Digital Agency - Refresh or Rebuild Your WebsiteIf you need any assistance with getting your website up to speed for 2020 then do give us a call on 01276 534 680 or send us a message via our contact form.

We are a full-service digital agency with a track record of success so feel free to tap in to our many years of professional expertise.

Audit your website - Clever Marketing, Hampshire digital agency

3: Audit Your Website

8 Steps to Increase Traffic to Your Website: Part Three

Once you’ve got the right stats and analysis tools in place and you’re armed with a clutch of keywords that you want to drive traffic to your website, then the next thing you need to do is audit your website.

How do you audit your website?

Easy. Well, it can be easy and it can be quite complex too; it really depends on how deeply you want to audit your website.

Audit Your Website with Google Search Console

The first thing you can do is go and check your Google Search Console. Formerly called Google Webmaster Tools, it’s great because it’s a free tool.

Look for “manual actions” and “security issue” – unless your website is particularly badly built or you’ve been up to some shady SEO practices, these should be all clear.

However, if you have issues in these areas you should take the actions to mitigate them as Google suggests.

Check your “coverage” on the GSC splash page:

Google Search Console - Coverage

We had a look at our portfolio and we don’t have any errors on any of our professional sites but if you found any “pages with errors” just click “OPEN REPORT” and explore the errors you find.

These are usually crawl errors so make sure that those URLs listed are published and live, look to see that your XML sitemaps contain the correct URLs.

When you’ve finished fixing your pages then you can resubmit your pages to Google’s index.

To get the most out of Google Search Console, make sure you submit the correct version of your website: there is a massive difference between your…

  • http://
  • https://
  • http://www. and
  • https://www.

…versions of your website.

You should only have ONE of these, an https version preferably because

  • the search engines like these (https is considered a “ranking signal” and can have a positive influence on your rankings) and
  • so do your visitors (Website users like to know payment and personal details are transferred securely)

so make sure that you have all your rewrites and redirects in place and work on the one version.

GSC will also help you to identify:

  • Whether your pages are in the Google index. And if not then you can submit them
  • What your Click Through Rates are – Do you need to rework your meta descriptions to make them more appealing in search?
  • Your rankings – Can help you decide which keywords you need to work on to get them into the top ten
  • Your link profile – is your internal linking structure correct? If not what do you need to do to “sculpt” your site structure.
  • Thin content – Pages with not enough text to capture users attention
  • Duplicate content – Using the same content in different sections
  • Mobile friendliness – Does your website work well on mobile devices?

Audit with Google Analytics

Again, rather than dive straight into expensive paid tools, you can use Google Analytics which is absolutely free.

Google Analytics helps you Audit your Website

In the above image you can see all the positive data in green but where you see red you’ll want to start investigating.

Pages per session are down compared to the same time last year, so here’s a starting point for your efforts.

Other “low hanging fruit” you can pick are:

Site speed: Go to Behaviour > Site Speed > Overview

This section of Google Analytics will show you which pages are slow so you can look at how they are delivered and make decisions on optimisation: do you need to strip out any fancy animation, reduce image sizes, look at minimising your scripts, GZIP and compress files, load your scripts in a different place in your code, get a new server etc.

Other Tools Are Available

Google’s Analytics and Webmaster Tools are great free tools to start your audit. You may also wish to look at Bing as well, as a companion to GSC, but also a number of other incredible tools:

Google Lighthouse

This audit tool is available in Google Chrome’s developer console. Open the webpage you want to expect, open the dev console and run an audit. Lighthouse will show you your performance, web best practices, accessibility and SEO audits. Run it in an incognito Chrome browser window so that any extensions don’t slow it down.

Google PageSpeed Insights

Go to PageSpeed Insights and enter the URL of the page you need to inspect. You’ll get a wealth of info that’s integrated into Lighthouse but you can see the speed issues alone here.

PSI will show you where your pages need attention. Fix the issues that are flagged up, speed up your site, get better scores and hopefully you’ll get better rankings and more traffic.

Xenu Linksleuth

This is a very old tool that’s not been updated in years but it still does exactly what it says on the tin.

Linksleuth crawls your site and gives you lists of broken links. and which pages in your site point to these broken links.

This tool doubles up on Google Search Console but does the job in a different way and so it may be appropriate to have this in your toolbox as well.

Screaming Frog SEO Spider

A staff favourite here, Screaming Frog’s SEO Spider will crawl your site and pull all the data you need to analyse in a simple spreadsheet.

It looks at your titles, descriptions, the length of these fields (Not enough or too much text?), any redirects in place, h1 and h2 tags, file sizes, word counts, inbound links, missing image tag alt attributes etc.

The raw data is so handy that you can spot issues at a glance and it gives you all sorts of options to slice and dice your data.

Moz

When Rand Fishkin started SEO Moz in Seattle in 2004 his online tool was a cool extension to the SEO findings his company published.

Spidering websites, the eventual Moz SEO toolbox is a SaaS subscription toll that you can enter your URLs and parameters into and see the errors in your website.

Moz gives you a laundry list of all the problems with your site with priorities and what to do to fix the issues.

SEMrush

Just like Moz, SEMrush is another tool that crawls your “project” websites and reports on what is wrong and how to fix it.

As with all tools, you will need a level of expertise to interpret and act upon the issues that SEMrush flags up, but it is a useful tool to have in your web audit arsenal.

And there’s More…

Other tools that are also worth a mention are:

  • Ahrefs
  • MajesticSEO
  • SEOptimer
  • SpyFu

As with all website audit tools, you may have heard great things from different users. Ultimately it’s entirely up to you how you work and which tools suit your workflow. Do you like free tools? Is the interface right? Are there too many switches and dials to monitor and flick?

But the big question really is do you have the knowledge, the skills and the time to delve into a new tool/set of tools and do the work yourself? If you do then good. If not then let us know.


Audit your website - Clever Marketing - Hampshire Digital AgencyIf you need help to understand audit tools or you’d rather let us do it all for you, then get in touch. Clever Marketing are a premier Hampshire digital agency with many years of website SEO audit experience and the results to show for it too.

Call us on 01276 534 680 or complete our easy contact form.

Analyse Your Keywords

2: Analyse Your Keywords: Both in Real Life and on Your Website

8 Steps to Increase Traffic to Your Website: Part Two

The foundation of all web searches is… keywords.

How did you reach this page? If you came through organic search which keywords were you searching for? keywords or analyse your keywords? Maybe something else?

There are so many potential keywords that can get traffic to your site and keyword analysis is an art form in its own right.

It is also the bedrock and the basis for your organic traffic.

So before you progress any further with trying to increase traffic to your website it’s worth sitting down and auditing your website to see which keywords your website is being found for.

Google Analytics

If you read the first part of this series, Have the Right Analytical Tools, then you should have Google Analytics installed on your website (Other analytics & stats tools are available)

Logging in to the Analytics interface you’ll see a wealth of options to view the data for your website but the most important one here is:

Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels

Then you want to focus on your Organic Search traffic

Analytics tells you what percentage of your traffic is coming through organic search against all your other channels such as direct traffic (people typing your URL into the web browser’s address bar), referrals (links from other websites, forum…), PPC (Google Ads, Bing Ads…) and social (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook etc.)

However… there is ONE small problem. Google hides organic search terms from Analytics when users are logged in to their Google account. This affords a level of privacy to users but hides that valuable keyword data from webmasters, website owners and marketers – the very people who need this information.

You’ll see organic search keywords but may notice that as much as 98% is “Not Provided”.

But don’t panic.

Google Analytics has so many useful applications that you can see which are your most popular pages, how users travel through the website, where they enter, where they leave, how long they spent on certain pages and so on. This is a veritable goldmine of information for you but that limited keyword data.

Take what you can out of Analytics then move on to the next tool…

Google Search Console

Formerley called Google Webmaster Tools, Google Search Console gives you all the keyword data that you need from the Google Search Engine.

You can look back as far as 16 months and see:

  1. Which keywords get you the most clicks
  2. Which keywords get you impressions in search
  3. What the Click Through Rate is and
  4. Your keyword ranking

Export this data to a CSV and import in to Excel or output to Google Sheets and then you can analyse your keywords’ data to your heart’s content.

Real World Keyword Data

Now this is the most important and most overlooked aspect of keyword research. Some very detached “SEO experts” will only look at the online data. But you must look at the real world keyword data before you go any further.

Who are you?

What do you do?

The answer to the first question is your name. Your brand. There may be different versions, just like we are Clever Marketing, Clever Marketing Ltd and Clever Marketing Limited. We are also found for Clever Marketing agency, Clever Marketing Farnborough and so on. So you can see that brand is incredibly important for getting you that relevant traffic.

Also bear in mind that you may have competitors with similar names – where do they rank? Above you? Do searchers confuse them with you?

And what do you do?

Widgets? Great. Purple widgets? Even better. Organic purple widgets? That’s more like it. Ethically-sourced organic widgets? That’s good.

Website Keyword Data

Now, looking at your Google Analytics and Google Search Console data what does that tell you? Are people finding your brand? Do people even know about your brand? Or are people looking for and finding your site for products? Maybe it’s a bit of both?

What we find in keyword data analysis is that very often our new client’s websites have been built to look good but they don’t always perform well in search.

This poor search performance is often due to a failure to optimise your site and include your correct keywords.

If you’re selling the most innovative ethically-sourced organic purple widgets then how will anybody find you if you only ever say the word widget?

Compare Real World and Online Keywords

Now that you have your real world list of keywords and the things that you do, compare that to your digital data.

What does that Google Search Console data say?

If your website data does not align with your real world keywords then you’ve got a problem.

Once again, don’t panic.

In Search Console you may not be getting clicks for your keywords but are they at least appearing in search? Are you getting impressions for those keywords?

If you are getting impressions for your keywords but no clicks then look at your rankings next.

How far off the coveted first page of Google are you? Are you just bubbling under the top ten rankings or are you out by a country mile?

If you’re not far off then you can focus on these keywords to try and get better rankings for them. If you’re way off then you’ve got a lot more work cut out for you.

If you are neither getting clicks nor even any impressions for your keywords then you really need to look at your plan immediately.

The most pertinent question is do you even have the content on your website that includes your keywords?

So this is where your offline and online worlds meet and that you analyse your keywords in both spheres is absolutely vital. Because if you’re optimising for the wrong keywords then you’ll not get relevant traffic. Your bounce rates will be massive and the search engines will take this into account. Why would they show your results in the search pages if your visitors don’t like what they see when they get there?


Analyse Your Keywords: Clever Marketing - Hampshire Digital AgencyIf you need help to analyse your keywords and conduct keyword research, let us know. Clever Marketing are a premier Hampshire  digital agency with many years of deep keyword research experience and the results to show for it too.

Call us on 01276 534 680 or complete our easy contact form and we will analyse your keywords with you, ready to go into a new digital strategy that will catch attention, get traffic and generate leads.

Have the Right Analytical Tools - Clever Marketing, Digital marketing Agency, Hampshire

1: Have the Right Analytical Tools

8 Ways to Increase Traffic to Your Website: Part One

One of the biggest reasons why clients come to us at Clever Marketing is because they need more traffic to their websites. That and they need more leads of better quality.

Getting traffic to your website is all “a numbers game” and the best way to know what those numbers are is to have the right analytical tools.

So, whilst having the right analytical tools will not, in itself, increase traffic to your website, it is absolutely essential to have these tools to see what your traffic is and how your efforts to improve it are coming along.

Google Analytics

If you do nothing else you should at the very least have Google Analytics installed on your website.

Most web designers know about Analytics and will usually have installed this for you. However, we have seen websites where this is not the case. This is the twenty first century so we really need to see GA installed as soon as your website goes live.

All you need to do is:

1) set up an Analytics account and

2) copy the code snippets that Google provides and 3) place them in the code of your website.

At a very basic level that will give you the insights into how many visitors you get every day, how long they stay on your website for and which pages they look at.

This is all provided in a (we think) very simple to understand interface and you can customise it and deep dive into the data to your heart’s content.

If you want a more in-depth analysis of how your visitors behave, then you can look at things such as which pages they look at after they reach your website. You can follow the flow of users from your homepage to your product pages to your enquiry or contact pages and then to your “thank you” pages which show successful interactions or goal completions.

Analysing this data you can see if users start to “drop off” at any stage as they move through the website. Armed with this information you can start to optimise individual pages to make them more appealing, improve your Calls to Action (CTAs) and make the whole user experience more easy and enjoyable.

You can even see whether your users are on desktop, tablets or mobile devices. If you need to know whether its iPhone users or Android visitors, Google Analytics will show this too. Which iPhones your visitors are using is also possible to see.

Google Analytics is your friend so you really must use it.

Google Search Console

The next tool that you really must have in place is Google Search Console.

Re-branded in 2015, Google Search Console (GSC) became the new name for what was formerly known as Google Webmaster Tools.

GSC allows webmasters to do a number of very cool and useful things such as control which XML sitemaps are submitted to Google, if there are any errors with pages and which pages are in the Google index, when they were last crawled etc.

But one of the biggest bonuses of Google Search Console is its ability to show website owners the value of the search terms that are shown as “not provided” in Google Analytics.

Keywords in Analytics became “not provided” in 2011 when Google decided to protect user privacy and make search more secure.

For website owners this was a great blow at first. How can you tell which search term campaigns are working successfully? Which keywords are attracting people to your website?

That’s where Search Console helps webmasters and marketers to fill in the gaps.

Search Console provides keywords, click through rates (CTR) and rankings, so you can look to improving your content, building a successful content strategy and also how to markup your descriptions so that they work better in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Google Search Console is absolutely invaluable, so we recommend it as one of the right analytical tools to include in your website build.

Google Tag Manager (GTM)

Google Tag Manager (GTM) may not be quite as essential as Google Analytics or Google Search Console but, for best practice reasons, we absolutely must include it.

Google Tag Manager is the perfect tool for delivering tags or snippets of code to your website via its dashboard.

As an example, if you run a site with display ads, you will want to rotate those ads and the code snippets on a regular basis.

GTM has a simple interface where you log in and easily publish all your JavaScript tags.

Google Tag Manager has all the controls to add and remove, swap snippets and keep in control of your website’s scripts – Google Analytics tags, Hotjar tags, Pardot snippets etc.

At a more advanced level we can do other clever things with GTM such as control how long sessions are and whether your users scroll through your pages. So it’s an invaluable tool that many designers and website builders often overlook.

But to a digital marketer GTM is absolutely essential as it provides levels of control and insight that quite literally add another (data) layer to your performance.


Clever Marketing, Hampshire Digital Agency, have the right analytical toolsThose are the essential and right analytical tools that you absolutely must install in your website. Once this “holy trinity” is in place you have virtually everything you need to analyse your traffic, how users interact, what they look at, where they came from, which pages they landed (and left) on and how long they spent on your website.

If you need help, please free to ask us to implement these tools for you. Call 01276 534 680 or fill in our contact form and we’ll be happy to help you.

8 steps to increase traffic to your website

8 Steps to Increase Traffic to Your Website

Increase traffic to your website! One of the biggest issues we hear from clients who come to us is that they just don’t have enough traffic to their website.

This may be because their site is very beautiful and the designers were great at creating a good looking website. But when it comes down to functionality, they missed a few tricks.

Here we list eight steps to increase traffic to your website…

1: Have the Right Analytical Tools

Firstly, how do you know that you don’t have enough traffic to your website?

You need to make sure you have the right analytical tools in place and these will help you to analyse the data so that you can make informed decisions going forward.

We recommend that you at least have Google Analytics (GA) and Google Search Console (GSC) set up. We also recommend having Google Tag Manager (GTM) in place so that you can do this on a basic level and then have more advanced tools at a later date.

Top tip: One of the biggest reasons for having GSC installed is that you can see all of the “not provided” organic keyword search terms that GA hides from you.

2: Analyse Your Keywords: Both in Real Life and on Your Website

Everyone obsesses over their Google Analytics data. We know because we do too. It’s very addictive hence why our digital marketing team pore over the figures every day.

However, do the keywords in GA match your keywords in real life? What do people talk about when they discuss or look for your product or service?

If you’re starting up and trying to push an unknown brand name when you’re actually selling purple widgets then you’ll be missing a trick if you never actually mention your purple widgets and only your brand.

3: Audit Your Website

If you really want to increase traffic to your website, in addition to looking at your analytics traffic, your site will really need to have a digital health check.

When you audit your website you’ll see more than just the fact that you don’t have as much traffic as you want, you’ll start to understand why.

A website audit will identify where you may have missing or duplicate titles and descriptions, broken links, both internal and external links, whether you have too much or too little text in your pages and whether your images are marked up correctly.

There are so many things that an audit can highlight so it’s worthwhile running your audit now and regularly to ensure you are chipping away at and reducing all the issues that can slow down your site’s performance, both with users and the search engines.

4: Refresh or Rebuild Your Website

If you have an already fantastic website you may only need to perform some minor modifications to make it more effective.

A UX audit may reveal some issues that you need to address so that your Calls To Action are more obvious or appealing. Your template may need a spring clean.

Deeper problems will need more drastic action. For example; a designer may have removed half your content because they thought your website was “too wordy” and “nobody’s going to read all that”. Yet your traffic plummeted and you lost half your visitors. Now what?

This is where you’ll need a serious look at and a rebuild of your website.

5: Revisit Your Content Strategy – You do Have a Content Strategy Don’t You?

What do you mean you’ve never posted anything new to your website for the past year?

You’ve spent time and effort researching and creating new products and services so you really need to create a content strategy where you can regularly post about what you do and what you’re up to, what the latest news is and why people should speak to you, buy from you.

Everything you do needs to be talked about and that content strategy will feed the appetites of your audience when you tie it in with all your SEO, PPC and social media activity, but more on that next…

6: Keep Doing SEO

When you’ve invested in a solid content strategy you then need to support this with an equally decent content marketing strategy.

The first step is to keep doing SEO. There have been lots of premature predictions over the years that “SEO is dead” but there is no sign of a let up in the skills need to make a website perform well in search. In fact, finding experienced search marketers with the truly right skills is getting harder.

That’s where you need a trusted partner to step in and build upon those years of experience with the latest insights into what does and doesn’t work in getting your website the attention it deserves.

7: Invest in Paid Search (PPC)

What if your brand is new? What if your product is new? What if the re is so much organic competition that you haven’t got a cat in hell’s chance of “ranking number one in Google”?

That’s where Pay Per Click (PPC) comes in and the likes of Google Ads (Previously Google AdWords) and Bing Ads.

By entering what is effectively an auction to rank above the organic listings, you can achieve some great results. Now we have seen some real stinkers off campaigns but we have a good nose for these and can tell you what will work and how much it will cost.

But it is always worth investigating that you invest in paid search and at least run brand campaigns to dominate the search engine results pages.

8: Get Social

Last, but not least, you need to get social.

Social media campaigns will bring you traffic for free if you only take the time to build a relevant and engaged audience and you post the right things at the right time.

Again, just like paid search, you can invest in paid social and get some quite excellent results by paying for targeted Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn traffic.

We took one obscure product from zero to nearly four thousand followers on Facebook recently as a way to build brand awareness. It is the first step on a campaign to create an interested and engaged audience who will hopefully develop brand loyalty as they resonate with the posts and the product.


Clever Marketing - Hampshire Digital AgencySo there you have it. A very top level overview of 8 steps to increase traffic to your website. We will be expanding all of these points so that you can delve in further and understand just what it takes these days to have a successful traffic strategy that will drive visitors to your website.

If you would like to know more about any of these individual items, or the suite of digital services as a whole, then please do give us a call on 01276 534 680 or complete our contact form.

Marketing Your Business with Limited Resources

Marketing Your Business with Limited Resources

Marketing is an essential part of running a business. Without it, people won’t know that your company exists, and you’ll be hard pushed to find any customers. There are a wide variety of ways companies can market themselves, from the small but cost-effective local marketing initiatives to the big extravagant campaigns you couldn’t possibly miss.

But today we want to talk about those business owners who aren’t quite so quick to spend time or money, who maybe have a tighter budget, or who are held back by time constraints or even a skills shortage in their company. There are a lot of reasons why a business may have “lean resources”, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be able to market themselves at all.

Becoming a Juggler

In order to deliver marketing effectively as a business owner with limited resources, you need to become very good at juggling. In particular, you will have “four balls” you need to keep in the air at all times:

1. Marketing Strategy & Tactics

Your marketing strategy should be aligned with your business strategy and goals (see What’s the Secret to Delivering Meaningful Marketing). With a strategy identified, your tactical campaigns and initiatives are simply those individual initiatives designed to deliver to the plan. Coming up with the goals for your marketing campaigns, identifying the key channels you want to use, creating the resources needed for each one. Working out how you will approach each challenge and then deploying them.

2. Brand

Marketing is about so much more than individual campaigns. In order to market your business effectively you also need a brand and a brand identity that encompasses your proposition. That entails the creative elements of a logo and a visual style, as well as identifying your tone of voice – the type of language that you use.

3. Industry Landscape and Competition

You also need to understand the environment you are working in and your strengths and weaknesses in relation to your offer, versus your competition. Understanding this enables you to best position your value proposition. Also by reading more widely through marketing media (such as marketingweek.com) can provide other inspiration for new ideas to try or a new way to reach your audience. Monitoring the competitive landscape can be a great source of ideas, if you can invest the time into it.

4. Marketing Channels

Considering your target customers, you need to decide on the key channels that you will need to focus on that resonate with them the most. Will you be running offline or online marketing campaigns, or a mix of both? How much can you manage yourself or will any external resources be required?

Now we know that’s a lot to keep track of, especially when you have the normal day to day duties to do as well. But unfortunately, we’re not quite done yet. Those are just the things you need to be able to manage within your business and your industry. If you want to be really successful with your marketing, then you need to keep an eye on the ever-changing marketing world as well.

Managing a Changing Landscape

The marketing world is always changing. New technologies, styles or trends will impact the way you market your business, and what your customers expect of you, and the changes can happen at the drop of a hat. To give you an idea, here are some of the changes we have identified for the coming months:

General Changes

The digital marketing landscape is set for a huge overhaul during 2019 and 2020, and most marketing professionals are already working to get their businesses well positioned for the new changes. Voice search will become a bigger factor for online marketing, which means Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) practices will start to look very different. Growth will need to happen through multiple channels, meaning you can’t just invest all of your time and money into one marketing channel. Blogging will become more of an art form as search engines demand fresh content that isn’t regurgitated, and businesses will need to focus on search engines other than Google (like Bing, Yahoo, Ask.com, Baidu or Wolfram Alpha) to see results. And that’s just the start! There are general changes to the marketing landscape happening all the time, and you need to be aware of them.

Google Algorithms

Google updates its algorithms 2-4 times a day, sometimes more – which means at least 700 updates a year. There have already been four ‘large’ updates this year, with multiple smaller updates in-between. If you’re relying on online marketing channels, this means you will need to stay on top of at least the major changes made to their algorithms so that you can stay ahead.

Google Ads

If you advertise on Google through Pay Per Click (PPC), you will also need to know when they change something, add something, or take a feature away. Google are pretty prolific when it comes to updates, and already this year there have been four big updates to Google Ads. If you don’t keep up with these changes, you will start to see fewer results from your campaigns, and consequently your Return On Investment (ROI) or Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) will drop.

LinkedIn Ads

Just like Google, LinkedIn has its own ad platform, and that too is changing. LinkedIn rolled out a range of new features in the last twelve months which are only just starting to get a foothold, which means now is the perfect time to get onboard. From video ads to new reporting interfaces and even a campaign manager, LinkedIn is trying to make it easier to market your business through them.

Clever Solutions

So, how do you manage all of this? How do you choose where to focus your efforts, time and money to get the best return on your investment? Frankly, how do you even know where to start with marketing when your business has minimal time, knowledge and staff to invest in marketing? The answer is simple – you ask for help.


Clever Marketing - Hampshire Digital Agency.At Clever Marketing, we work closely with companies of all shapes and sizes who have limited marketing resources, but want to maximise those they do have. We can act as your outsourced digital marketing specialists, helping you understand where your skills are best used, providing you with extra resource where we can, and helping you get the most of your digital marketing efforts.

We can even help you create strategies for SEO, PPC and general marketing, and implement them for you. Our monthly fee structure means we are better value than hiring another employee – and you don’t need to buy us a birthday cake every year! If you would like to find out more, just get in touch with the team today.

5 SEO Myths Debunked - Hampshire SEO agency Clever Marketing

5 SEO Myths Debunked

Starting a business isn’t always easy, especially when you’re looking to expand and grow. In order to develop your business you need to make sure you have a strong digital presence, and that means  “playing ball” with the search engines. This can feel like an uphill battle at first, especially if you don’t really know what you need to do – just that you need to do something. To help you out, we’ve put together a myth-busting blog post all about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Read more