What we learnt from Brighton SEO

September 19th in Events 6 minute read

Ben and James from our SEO team were lucky enough to head down to one of the largest digital marketing events of the year, Brighton SEO. With attendees coming from far and wide, this event is one of the highlights of the SEO calendar. 

Read on to find out what Ben and James took away from the day:

Ben Duke – SEO Executive

This was my second marketing event of the year after attending Search Leeds a little closer to home than Brighton SEO. There were some great talks with most of my time being spent at the “Azooma Stage”. Here’s my take on the things I learnt on the day:

Use your content to create a story

The first few talks I attended were related to link building and getting your site “out there”. One of the main points I took away from the talks was that you need to create a story, an angle that you know will draw the eye and attract the attention of journalists to make them have to share your story. 

You can make your article look pretty with infographics, photos and videos but this isn’t always what the journalists are looking for. They want exclusives and a storyline that they know will work. So, you need to make sure you’re focussed on what the hook of your content is first and foremost because this will make the execution far easier. 

Below is an example of where Burger King created a story to coincide with Pride in San Francisco. They produced a new “Proud Whopper” gaining coverage in publications like Time Magazine and the Washington Post. 

Think like a PR but act like an SEO

One of my favourite quotes of the day was “Think like a PR, but act like an SEO”. SEO and PR work hand in hand, because a good PR campaign = links and quality links = authority to your website. 

You don’t need to spam forums or upload your infographic to the 100’s of sites out there, it just goes back to creating that story that you can share. Create something that people can’t help but link to – this means you’re thinking like a PR and getting the SEO results, a win-win for you and your client. 

Video works

Video is a great source to provide with your content. Not only does it provide SEO value by increasing the time spent on page and helping to tell you the story, but it also really gives your piece that edge. One speaker mentioned that “Video increases organic search traffic by 157%”. 

Videos have both SEO and PR benefits. For PR, when you’re pushing stories out to journalists, providing them with a video is likely to appeal. It gives them additional content to add to the story and makes their life easier when they’re building the story out. For SEO, Google displays videos on SERPs (search engine results pages) and users are far more likely to click on content with a video attached. 

Here you can see an example of how Google displays videos in the SERPs:

Google video

You have to be reactive 

Most of the best PR angles come from people being reactive to relevant news that people can’t help but share and link to. ASOS were the main focus, when, following the viral leak of Easy Jet’s ‘backless seat’ photo, ASOS released a backless dress in response to the breaking news. You can see the tweet below:

ASOS tweet

This shows, that when you’re reactive to the news and what’s going on in the world, it’s quite easy to get yourself covered on major news sites. 

Don’t be afraid of failure

Last but not least, one of the most important messages I took away from the day was to not be afraid of failure. Not every campaign is going to work, some will work brilliantly and others not so much. Some campaigns will be a huge success but you need to prepare for some of your ideas not coming together. The ones that do go right, though, more than make up for it. 

James Exley – SEO Assistant

This September me and Ben took the opportunity to go down to the biggest SEO conference in the world, Brighton SEO. With this opportunity I took it upon myself to learn everything there was to offer for the future of SEO. I decided to’ learn about the SERP’s, how to make the most effective E-commerce sites and the future of machine learning in SEO, these were insightful talks and I feel learnt a lot coming away from it.

It’s all about making SERP rich content

In E-commerce it’s important to get an understanding of the SEO world on businesses. One of the main points that were talked about from these talks was optimising websites for the SERPS. When looking on search engines only 40% of the first page is organic. The rest includes features, snippets and ads. This makes it harder for businesses to gain organic traffic through keywords and other SEO methods. 

Google search results

Similarly to PR writing, product pages place best when they have videos and photos linked to them. This allows google to represent the products in their navigation bars at the top of the SERPS as snippets answering questions.

Keyword data can help write your product pages

Long tail keyword searches can consist of questions by customers when they are unsure what product they can be searching for. When listening to Kenneth Wernt Christensen I realised there is more to product pages than a simple description. Using fragrance as an example you can find that there are a lot of searches you can become a result of when writing a good product description.

Google search results

By putting in what scents make up a particular product you put yourself forward for searches that mention the specific smell. This helps businesses publicise their products on navigation bars such as the one above. 

Mobile optimization and site speed is everything

When creating websites and product pages it’s key to make sure your site is quick to load on both mobiles and desktops. However, when we require reviews, images, videos and detailed product pages it can put a lot of pressure on the domains to load quickly. This speed is key as its been found that a website will lose 12% of their users for every second it takes for a page to load. Solutions are manageable through techniques such as embedding videos from youtube, compressing images on the website and creating sitemaps help speed up your website keeping those potential customers on your site.

Page ranking and domain ranking aren’t the same 

Page rank

To finish the day at Brighton SEO I decided to test myself with a more complicated topic. Looking into how page rankings work on Google I decided to dive into the Page Rank algorithm. This helps to show how Google works within page ranking and domain ranking. Looking at how linking web pages affect the page ranks of others. When sharing pages across different websites this algorithm explains how no matter how many links a certain domain shares for another is given the ranking shared doesn’t change. When looking at the diagram it can show that although a site may have a high page authority it may not have the same domain authority. This is important for when you are trying to improve your own website as you need to look more in-depth as to how strong a domain is when attempting to get links.  

That’s all from us and our time at Brighton SEO. Make sure you keep your eyes peeled for our monthly SEO round-up posts. If you missed out on August’s update, you can catch up on the news here.

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