Lane Ellis

10 Smart Question Research Tools for B2B Marketers

Lane Ellis on Jun 4th, 2019     Search Marketing

10 Smart Question Research Tools for B2B Marketers, who, what, when, where colorful image.

Getting to the heart of the questions most important to your potential audience is an unbeatable path to providing best-answer solutions.

Let’s look also at why question research is such an important facet in marketing, and some of the primary ways to uncover precisely what people are using search engines and other search technology to ask and learn more about.

In 2017 our Senior Content Marketing Manager Caitlin Burgess looked at this topic, in “Beyond Google Keyword Planner: 7 Easy-to-Use SEO Research Tools for Generating Content Ideas,” and in the interim new tools have become available, and new features have been added to several.

Let’s look at 10 smart tools and tactics to help uncover the questions your audience is asking.

Nick Nelson

How B2B Marketers Can Win at Search with Best Answer Content

Nick Nelson on Feb 21st, 2019     B2B Marketing, Search Marketing, SEO

Winning Search with Best Answer Content

Marketers are engaged in a continuous battle to gain an edge when it comes to SEO, seeking those crucial advantages provided by top visibility where customers are looking. Multiple disciplines from technical SEO to creative content can be leveraged to win the search marketing game. At TopRank Marketing, we believe the best answer to this quandary is… well, to be the Best Answer.

To simplify and clarify, it might be helpful to take a step back.

In October of 2000, Larry Page laid out his ambitious vision for Google, a company he’d founded along with Sergey Brin just two years earlier.

Page foresaw his creation as “the ultimate search engine that would understand everything on the Web. It would understand exactly what you wanted, and it would give you the right thing.”

Lane Ellis

Our Top 10 Search Marketing Posts of 2018

Lane Ellis     Search Marketing

Woman looking out from heart-shaped cave at sky with pink clouds.

Search marketing has continued to mature throughout 2018. At each twist and turn along the way, we’ve done our best to not only cover each change, but also offer insight and research-based strategy to help savvy digital marketers along the way.

We’re fortunate to have a fantastic group of digital marketing professionals contributing to the TopRank Marketing Blog, with our CEO Lee Odden, Associate Director of Search & Analytics Tiffani Allen, Vice President of Client Accounts Alexis Hall, Content Strategist Anne Leuman, and others, each contributing search marketing insights, tips, and tricks this past year.

To help our blog community grow its search marketing knowledge, we’re happy to offer this list of our most popular search marketing posts of 2018.

Anne Leuman

Google Game Changers: 5 Recent Updates and How They Affect Marketers

Anne Leuman     Google, Search Marketing, SEO

2018 Google Updates & What They Mean for Marketers

Since the inception and rise of digital marketing, marketers have been keeping a watchful eye on Google — the ruler of the kingdom of search.

From research project to technology giant, over the last two decades Google has cemented itself as the dominating force in internet search. And while there are other rising contenders in the space, as of June 2018, Google owned 72.21% of all desktop searches. And the domination continues if you look at mobile, with Google owning a whopping 90.20% of searches.

Of course, Google’s market (and marketing) domination isn’t because of their speed to market in the late 90s, but rather the company’s dedication and investment in evolving the platform. And some of the latest evolutionary tweaks and new features are hitting soon — or have just recently arrived.

Anne Leuman

5 Powerful Types (And Examples) of Link-Worthy Content

How to Create Link-Worthy Content

Since the inception of the search engine, marketers have spent an obscene amount of time optimizing their content and strategy for search. And while the old days of keyword stuffing and other black-hat SEO tactics are behind (most marketers), there’s two constants that remain the same for driving organic search results: The importance of good content and getting credible links to that good content.

In fact, Google’s former Search Quality Senior Strategist and current Partner Development Manager, Andre Lippattsev, made it official in a recent interview stating that content and backlinks were the top two ranking factors in Google’s elusive algorithm.

As a result, there’s little doubt that we marketers must create something irresistible for searchers and search engines if we want to score good results.

Anne Leuman

SEO + Paid Search: An Aristotelian Lesson in Search Marketing Integration

Paid and SEO Search Marketing Integration

The first search engine was created in 1990, over two millennia from when Aristotle, the famed Greek philosopher, walked the earth. Having never lived in a world that included a search engine, let alone paper, you might be wondering what advice Aristotle could possibly offer when it comes to search marketing, but one of his most famous quotes offers an invaluable lesson:

“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” 

Even in ~330 BC, Aristotle understood that combining two tactics together results in powerful outcomes that are greater than their individual parts.

Adopting this classic teaching to your modern paid search and SEO tactics, means getting more bang for your buck in search marketing. For starters, integrating paid and organic search has been found to increase conversions by 200%, according to Search Engine Watch. If you want to maximize your potential return on your search marketing efforts, they need to work together.

Kevin Cotch

What You Need to Know About Optimizing Content for Voice Search

Kevin Cotch     Search Engines, Search Marketing, SEO

Voice Search Content Optimization

Thanks to the emergence of technologies such as mobile personal assistants, Amazon Echo, Google Home, Cortana, and others, there’s no doubt that voice search is on the rise. These days, consumers can send text messages while driving or use a mobile personal assistant to complete simple actions. In fact, Gartner predicts that about 30% of searches will be conducted without a screen by 2020. In addition, another study from ComScore, states that voice searches will account for nearly 50% of searches, too.

That means we marketers need to start thinking how we can get our content in front of our audience via voice search channels. While optimizing content for voice search can seem daunting, there are a few easy tips that can help you start gaining more visibility for those types of queries.

Caitlin Burgess

Digital Advertising Tips: 5 Scenarios Perfect for Pay-to-Play Tactics

In today’s competitive and content-saturated digital landscape, it’s no secret that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to connect, engage and inspire action from our audiences using only “free” or organic marketing tactics.

As a result, digital advertising, often dubbed “pay-to-play” by marketers, is steadily on the rise. In fact, last fall, eMarketer forecasted that digital advertising spend would surpass TV ad spending for the first time in history by the end of 2016. And that trend is definitely expected to continue.

However, despite rising ad spend, consumers are actively avoiding our ads, according to a 2016 HubSpot Research report. For example, four out of five consumers reported that they closed a browser or exited a website because of an autoplaying ad or a pop up.

Caitlin Burgess

Working Together in Perfect Harmony: Digital Advertising + Content Marketing

Content marketing has emerged as an incredibly effective way to arm consumers with the information they seek and need, increase brand awareness, enhance engagement, and ultimately inspire action and conversions. As TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden likes to say:

“Content isn’t King. It’s the Kingdom.”

But the kingdom is crowded. According to Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProf’s 2016 benchmark reports, 88% of B2B marketers and 76% of B2C marketers say they use content marketing.

With so many marketers in the content marketing game—many of them creating and publishing new content daily—competition is stiff. In addition, evolving algorithms for social media news feeds and search engine results make it even more difficult to get the right eyeballs on your content.

Ashley Zeckman

7 Tips For Deploying A Successful Ad Retargeting Strategy

Ashley Zeckman     Digital Marketing, Search Marketing

ad-retargeting-examples

There is no replacement for a sound organic optimization strategy. However, there are many ways that you can augment your organic strategy, including paid search tactics. Ultimately, your job is to ensure that prospective and current customers have a good user experience and can find the information that they need quickly and efficiently.

One tactic that has gained steam in the past couple of years is ad retargeting. In fact, Criteo found that visitors that are retargeted with display ads are 70% more likely to convert on your website than those who are not.

To help you navigate through the sometimes daunting and complex approach that is ad retargeting, here are 7 tips to help ensure that your advertising dollars don’t go to waste.

Leila De La Fuente

How 3 Mega E-Commerce Websites Approach Title Tag & Meta Description Optimization

Leila De La Fuente     Online Marketing, Search Marketing, SEO

ecommerce-shopping

Here’s a test: Google “fairy wings” right now. Your job is to quickly find which result will sell you a set of glitter fairy wings and preferably include free shipping.

Now that you’ve begun your search, how do you know which result will bring you to the most qualified products? One way is to visually scan the title and description snippets in your search results.

There are nearly 12 billion Google searches per month. Consumers conduct searches for products or services they need, and often use the snippets in search results as deciding factor on whether to click, or keep scrolling.

The examples below show how three mega e-commerce sites approach title tags and meta descriptions, what they’re doing right and some additional opportunities.

Alibaba.com

alibaba logo

Evan Prokop

Danny Sullivan on the State of Search Marketing in 2015

Danny Sullivan Authority Rainmaker 2015

To say there have been major changes in search marketing in recent times would be a big understatement. From the increased complexity and intelligence brought about by several Google search algorithm updates to the meteoric rise of mobile device usage, search marketers have had plenty to keep them busy.

Founding editor of Search Engine Land, Danny Sullivan has been an authoritative voice in the search marketing industry for nearly two decades, so he’s certainly seen and weathered plenty of big changes since the inception of search.

In his presentation at Authority Rainmaker 2015, Danny educated and entertained the audience with insights into the current state of search and how businesses and marketers can prepare for the future.

There isn’t One ‘Front Page’ of Google Anymore

Google Search Results Page Components - Authority Rainmaker 2015