Category Archives: Content

Customer Acquisition Solution Fluent says that most Active Users skip Ads on Snapchat

Content Originally posted on Website Magazine

Survey data from customer acquisition solution Fluent reveals that publishers using Snapchat are having a hard time attracting an audience to consume their content (and, of course, their advertising). While publishers are actually quite common on Snapchat (CNN, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times each have a presence), Fluent data revealed that 61 percent of those surveyed said they did not follow a news organization on the platform.

It’s not just news publishers that are being ignored either with 50 percent of survey respondents indicating they do not follow sports publishers (such as ESPN, NBA or NFL) or entertainment publishers (The Daily Mail or E!). Perhaps worst of all, however, is that Snapchat users are ignoring ads. Fluent’s data indicates that 60 percent said they “always” or “often” skip ads on the application, spiking to 80 percent for those in the 18-24 year-old demographic. One of the problems really might just be that Snapchat is so new in its model that advertisers metrics haven’t evolved to keep pace.

Snapchat is about brief, exclusive, engaging content and it is possible that publishers (and advertisers) are simply struggling to optimize their presence within that community.

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Search in 2017: 5 Things We Already Know to Be True

Regardless of whether it’s flying by or moving at a snail’s pace for you personally, it was just seven weeks ago when industry watchers predicted what search would look like in 2017. While it’s way too soon to know whether those many (many) predictions will come to fruition or not, we already know at least five things to be true about search in the new year. Read on to discover the steps your digital enterprise should be taking to be in compliance with search engine expectations.

HTTPS is a Priority

Google announced late last year that in Jan. 2017 it would begin marking HTTP pages that collect passwords or credit cards as “non-secure,” as part of a long-term plan to mark all HTTP sites as non-secure in Google Chrome.

The industry is already supporting site owners who are ready to be in compliance with Google’s “request.” BigCommerce, for instance, teamed up with Symantec for a solution called Encryption Everywhere, which will give Big Commerce customers access to a suite of encryption products, including a free standard SSL certificate, which can enhance security and improve shopper confidence (Google’s Chrome browser is marking any page with a password or credit card field as unsecure if the page is not on HTTPS).

A “not secure” label has the ability to impact conversions, key performance metrics and search rankings. When a person visits a site on their Chrome browser and Google indicates the site is not secure, it is very unlikely he or she will stay on the site (reducing time on site and increasing bounce rate – all ranking factors) let alone enter their personal information. What’s more, Google indicates that sites served over HTTPS load significantly faster than their HTTP counterparts, and page speed is considered one of some 200 ranking factors that Google considers and definitely impacts conversions as well.

Algorithm Update Rumors Are Alive and Well

There’s no way seven weeks could have passed in the new year, without a rumor or two about Google algorithm updates. Rumor has it, for example, that Google may have improved how it detects spammy links (including those from/within private blog networks) with many search result tracking tools including MozCast, Algoroo and RankRanger showing significant turbulence starting in early February 2017.

Small Business Owners are Still Intimidated by SEO

Small businesses owners (SBOs), including many car dealers, are relying on strategies such as social media (45 percent), public relations (31 percent), display advertising (24 percent) and mobile marketing (21 percent) to promote their businesses, according to a recent poll from Manta, but far fewer are using true, professional grade SEO. While social media has its benefits (like brand awareness and loyalty), of course, organic search remains the top driver of website traffic for most organizations, yet very few business owners plan understand the correlation between SEO and Conversion Optimization relative to website visitor conversion into lead generation.

Content Marketing and SEO Need Each Other

Nearly 80 percent of content marketers say that increasing their company’s online visibility is their primary content marketing goal according to a new study from Clutch released today, but there is still confusion over how much content is too much and when quality is more important than quantity. In addition, the majority of content marketers say they want to improve their company’s content, according to the study findings, making optimizing content for access across multiple devices (26 percent), creating more original content (24 percent) and including more visual elements (21 percent) all priorities.

“As far as SEO goes, without content there are no rankings and there is no opportunity to appear in results,” said Moz Founder Rand Fishkin in an interview with Clutch. “[Content marketing and SEO] are two practices that very much need each other.”

The survey also explored the types of content businesses produce in order to support three goals: brand awareness, SEO and lead generation. Clutch found that companies focusing on brand awareness tend to create infographics (19 percent) and product reviews (18 percent), while those focused on SEO and lead generation are most likely to produce research/original data (21 percent) and infographics (14 percent).

Fishkin warns, however, that “the age of infographics is dying, and most of them are quite bad” anyway.

“The ones that have success do so in a slightly manipulative way,” said Fishkin. “The embed gets linked back with very particular anchor texts that take advantage of search algorithms.”

Rather, using content to rank on the first page of Google requires paying attention to the quality of content produced. It needs to be “10x better than anything [you] can find in the search results today,” according to Fishkin.

Google My Business More Important than Ever

With recent updates to the dashboard as proof, Google My Business is already playing a prominent role in the search landscape of 2017. Mike Blumenthal has reported on two significant improvements to GMB like the upgrade of “the interface and functionality of the photos section within the My Business Dashboard” as well as support for temporary business closures with a process within GMP and an appropriate messaging on the business Knowledge Panel. In addition to those two updates, it’s reported that Google is testing a Google My Business website builder tool, which as of now is a “super simple” single-page website builder, but one has to imagine it will grow in capabilities and support Google-friendly elements from the start (e.g., HTTPS, responsive, etc.).

Agreement with On Page attributes is part of the ARA method discussed in this SEO Lesson on the basics by Sphere Control SEO

ARA stands for Agreement, Relevance and Authority. This is part one of a basic SEO lesson dealing with On Page SEO and how to achieve Agreement in the on page attributes. Throughout the year, I teach Search Engine Optimization to a wide audience of individuals. These individuals vary in SEO knowledge from a passing interest to people who actually wind up teaching me! One thing is for sure, the function of Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is dynamic, a constantly moving target. However, once we learn how a Search Engine “thinks”, the function of SEO becomes clear and much easier!

It is important to remember that, at this juncture, Google is primarily a Text Matching Engine. I often liken current search engines to everyone’s favorite old video game “Pac Man”. You might recall that Pac Man went about his video game life eating little white dots. Much like Pac Man, Google, Yahoo, Bing and other Search Engines do much the same thing. They have an insatiable appetite for Text! And it seems the more the better! And even more important with Google Panda 2.5, Google wants Unique Content AND Fresh content. Yikes! Someone call Jenny Craig!!

Why Agreement is so Important for On Page SEO

Many people ask me why Agreement is so important for On Page SEO. If you have ever watched any videos by Matt Cutts (Matt is the head of Google’s web spam team), you will notice that he often uses the term “Signals”. So, let’s put ourselves in the shoes of Google (Free Food!! YAY!!), and think about what Google has to decipher every minute of every day as they index every website in the whole world. Yes, you read that right, the whole world as in all of them! Obviously, Google can’t send Matt out to every business and make sure each business or blog is what or who they say they are. So, Google looks at “Signals” that help them determine what a web page is all about. One of those signals is On Page Agreement. By taking steps such as this, Google is better able to give us all the search results we are actually looking for. Is Google perfect in this regard? No! But no one else is either, and I strongly suggest that since Google has more money than most nations and their name is now synonymous with Online Search , they are on the right track!

So what is On Page Agreement anyway? How does it effect SEO?

On Page Agreement effects SEO in several different ways, but many people still wonder what the term “Agreement” means or eludes to. So, knowing that Google is a text matching engine, and Agreement in this lesson deals with on page attributes, let’s take a look at several of the most important on page attributes and how agreement works. We will be dealing with basic HTML such as the page’s <title>TITLE TAG</title>, the header tags such as the <H1 TAG>, the page’s URL (like, and text body of the page itself. Let’s assume that we have already written text on the page with the goal of explaining what the page is all about. Hopefully, we understand what Keywords are, and have included them semi-liberally throughout said text body. And it would be a good idea to know what Stop Words are when creating a Title Tag, and leaving those words out. Now, let’s dive into Agreement!

How On Page Attributes and Agreement work together to create proper optimization

Proper website optimization begins with agreement between On Page Attributes. If we look at the most important attributes on page, we would all agree that the Title Tag, URL, Header Tags and Body Text are critical. And that is really where good SEO lays. If we have our important Keywords in the page Title, and if we can pick up a few of those keywords in the Page URL…and if we can reiterate those same keywords in the H1 tag on page we are doing well! Now, if we can RE-REITERATE those keywords (found in the Title, URL, and H1) in the first sentence of the Text Body under the H1 Tag, we are doing very good! And if we have those keywords in the Text Body as a whole, in a natural writing/speech format, we are doing really good! Superlative on page SEO would also mean that I might have these keywords relative to Image Title and Image Alt tags as well! And if you can keep this agreement format with all of your Header tags and the text below them, you are on your way to a page that will optimize quite well!


Many people approach me at this point in our SEO Training Seminars and ask me if this is all there is to SEO? My first answer is a resounding NO! However, as simple as it may seem, this is a huge part of Effective and Durable Search Engine Optimization, such as our Find Me™ SEO service. Keep in mind the premise of this blog post: It’s about On Page Basics! What are some other tips and tricks you like to employ on page for better optimization and page ranking? Please share those with us in the comments section below!

Is this all there is to Agreement with regards to SEO?

You might be wondering if this is all there is with regards to Agreement and SEO? Well, the answer to that question is no, too! Agreement addresses many things, some of which are not relegated to On Page SEO alone! In our next lesson, we will look at how Agreement and Authority intersect during Off Page SEO, and how to build Web Trust using those two factors for better page rank and effective local SEO.

Tiny Malone is a military veteran and a 21 year veteran in the automotive and technology field. Tiny built and ran several extremely successful internet sales departments for car dealerships in Louisiana, Texas, Nevada, Arizona and California. As Chief Operating Officer of Sphere Control SEO, Tiny heads up day to day operations. Tiny has five kids, loves to fish, is a huge LSU Football fan, and is a working professional photographer living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. You can e-mail Tiny Malone here, or visit Sphere Control SEO home page. Please keep in mind that the opinions expressed on this blog post are those of Tiny Malone, and that as search engine algorithms change, so does effective methodology of appropriate SEO practices. The opinions expressed on this page are valid as of publish date under Google Panda 2.5. This is a basic lesson that does not cover all phases of in depth seo, which are available as a service from Sphere Control SEO and Sphere Control LLC.