4 Tools You NEED as a Digital Marketer [2022]

The title reads '4 Tools You Need as a Digital Marketer'. The image shows a phone with different tools and software shown. Apprentice Tips logo sits in the bottom left.

As a digital marketer, your primary role is to define, design, build and implement digital campaigns across online and social media platforms. Creating and tracking campaigns require essential digital tools such as content creation software, design tools and analytic trackers.

This guide will outline the vital tools you need to use, as well as our top recommendations for the best software out there to level up your marketing – let’s begin!


1. Canva

A demo of how to use Canva is on the right and the Canva logo sits on the left.
canva.com

Canva is an Australian graphic design platform, used to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, documents and other visual content. It also allows users to upload templates for other marketers to use.

This is one of my favourite design tools, as it is user-friendly and produces professional content without the cost of a top-end graphic designer. This is great for businesses with a small budget, who prefer to do in-house design rather than out-sourcing.

Canva allows you to collaborate with your team on the same platform, giving you the option to share directly with team members or set permissions on who can edit the content.

The tool is free to use with some features being restricted to a premium plan. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Removing the background of images
  • Resizing
  • Full access to photos, elements and fonts

Canva Pro is £99.99 a year and is limited to one person. Canva for Teams is £129.90 a year 2+ people.

2. Mailchimp

If you’re one of the 8/10 marketers who use email marketing, Mailchimp is for you!

Mailchimp is a marketing automation platform which is designed for businesses using email to reach their target audience. It’s an all-in-one tool, allowing you to manage mailing lists and create email templates. Being a web-based application means you don’t need to download and install any software to your devices, and instead can use it on any web browser.

If you’re not clued up on everything coding, Mailchimp offers a range of readymade templates to use in your email campaigns. You can change colours, fonts and structure without needing to know HTML, CSS, or JavaScript. This is the perfect fix if your company is without an in-house web designer.

Mailchimp is free to use, with certain features being restricted to those who pay for the premium plan.

3. Yoast

A demo of how to use Yoast is on the right and the Yoast logo sits on the left.
yoast.com

If you’re familiar with WordPress, you will be familiar with Yoast.

Yoast is an SEO plugin, designed to help businesses optimize their websites for search engines. The plugin makes it easy to write titles and description tags inside of website pages. It also shows you a ‘Snippet Preview’ of how the page will look on Google’s search results page.

SEO is all about keyword research and Yoast allows you to set a ‘focus keyphrase’ to analyse the web content on a page. It determines how your content scores on different factors. For example, the length of text, using internal links etc. It then organises these scores using the traffic light system, with helpful tips to improve your rankings.  

Yoast is free to use with certain features being locked for Yoast SEO Premium members at £99 a year.

4. HubSpot

HubSpot has several marketing tools at hand, with everything you need in one place.

HubSpot offers a full stack of software, including a CRM, Marketing Hub, Sales Hub and a Service Hub. Coined as an ‘all-in-one marketing software’, it provides tools that can help your company with blogging, SEO, social media, email, landing pages and web analytics.

The ‘holy grail’ of inbound marketing, HubSpot’s tools can help you to grow your traffic, convert leads and prove ROI for your inbound marketing campaigns. With everything in one place, it couldn’t be more ideal for a digital marketer.

HubSpot offers a ‘free tools’ package, as well as other premium packages to unlock more features – starting at £38/month.

A hand holding a phone that has software logos on it.

Final Thoughts

Marketing doesn’t have to be overwhelming, and with the right digital marketing tools, you can create a marketing strategy with ease. Incorporating social media marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing and consistent content gives your business the best chance to succeed and grow.

Digital tools are always changing, so be sure to keep up with trends and have an updated list of tools at your fingertips.


Is there something we missed? Do you have a great tool that you want to recommend?

Help us keep this list updated by leaving a comment with your favourite digital tools. For more information on digital careers, check out our blog.

SEO tips: Top 6 tips for keyword research in 2022

A laptop showcasing a Google search page, to be used as a header image on a keyword research article.

Are you looking to create strong content that will rank highly on search engines? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we’ll explore the top 6 tips for keyword research in 2022. No matter what service your site provides, SEO should be at the forefront of every marketing strategy. 

Often overlooked, SEO is crucial to ensuring that you drive the right kind of traffic in as high of a volume as you can. What good is a product if you can’t reach the audience you’re marketing to? A major aspect of SEO is keyword optimization and research. By targeting the right keywords for your business, you’ll be able to increase traffic and ultimately conversions.

As well as being an important skill for any entrepreneur, it’s also a crucial knowledge point for any budding marketer. After all, 75% of people never scroll past the first page of Google – so you can see how important it is to shoot for rankings on the first page. Throughout this article, we’ll offer 6 keyword research tips for effective SEO.

What is keyword research?

Before we divulge in our selection of top tips, let’s start with a little introduction on keyword research. What exactly is keyword research? To put it simply, keyword research is the process of researching search terms in order to optimise your site and content for higher rankings on search engines results pages. 

How to do keyword research for beginners

If you’re completely new to keyword research, you may appreciate a small guide of things you should be considering when carrying out keyword research. Let’s take a look at things to consider:

Search volume 

Is there enough search volume to justify including this keyword? Depending on how niche your topic is, you may struggle to find high volume keywords within your topic. However, you should always aim to include keywords with a higher search volume if possible. 

Difficulty 

How difficult will it be to rank for this keyword? Keyword research tools will often provide you with a number to gauge how difficult the keyword will be to rank for. Depending on how well established your site is, some keywords with higher difficulties may not be attainable. Some sites will have stronger authority and SERP positioning, making it near impossible to rank against them with a smaller less established site. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Why not include a range of long tail and short tail keywords with a variety of volume and difficulty? 

Relevance 

Are the keywords relevant to your content?  There are plenty of keywords with a super high volume and low difficulty, but that doesn’t mean you should target them. You should only focus on keywords if they are relevant to your content. For example, a business themed blog targeting food related keywords simply will not work. After all, Google’s main goal is to provide perfect content for users, and adding irrelevant keywords into your content will only signal to Google that your content is not useful to users. 

Current SERP results

What pages are currently ranking for your search term? Before you start creating content based on your keyword list, it’s important to scout out the competition. Who holds the top positions, and can your site realistically compete with the current top ranking content? It’s good to use pages which are currently ranking as a baseline for the quality of content you need to produce. By creating an article stronger and longer than what currently holds position 1 for your term, you may be able to overtake it! 

Utilise free tools

Depending on how far into your search marketing journey you are, you may not be ready to invest in keyword research tools. While paid tools are very powerful, they aren’t always necessary for smaller businesses or those looking to get a taste of keyword research. Free tools can offer strong insights into keyword difficulty and volume without charging you a fortune. Some useful free keyword research tools include: 

  • Answerthepublic
  • Wordstream
  • Google trends
  • Moz keyword explorer
  • Semrush
  • Ubersuggest

Do some independent searching

While this may seem silly, this is actually a fantastic way to determine what users may be searching for. Put yourself in your target audience’s shoes and do some Googling. Oftentimes, one search will spark new ideas and branch out to new keyword ideas for you to look into. 

While doing your own Googling, another useful thing to take into account is the autocomplete function on Google’s search bar. This will offer you related terms based on what previous users have searched for. These could prove to be useful keywords in themselves, or may also help you think of new ideas to look into. 

Consider the intent of your keywords

When you come across a relevant keyword with a high search volume and low difficulty, it can be tempting to immediately incorporate this into your target keyword list. However, you should always think about the intent behind a keyword before you target it. 

Ultimately, we need to find traffic that will convert. If users are landing on our page but we aren’t satisfying their search needs, we are leaving these potential customers with a bad experience on our site. Not to mention the bounce rate that will influence our SERP rankings. If you’re going to target a keyword, make sure that the content you’re providing will fulfil the intent behind a user’s search and answer any questions they may have. 

Find synonyms and alternative phrasing

Often overlooked, synonyms and alternative phrasing for keywords can be an incredible way to increase traffic to your site. In a world where we search for things as fast as possible, a lot of us search for things in the shortest way we can. Whether that’s a shortened version of what we’re looking for, or a synonym instead of a full term, there’s search volume behind these terms. 

You can include these variations in your content to increase visibility alongside using your main target keywords. Oftentimes these variations can offer a lower search difficulty than a more established standard search term. 

Analyse competitor content

As well as analysing the current top ranking content on SERPs, you can also find similar content to what you want to produce and check which keywords it’s currently ranking for. This can help you identify keyword gaps within your own content, and also ensures that you aren’t lacking in any areas that your competitors are performing well in. You can use tools such as Ahrefs to analyse each URL and find out which keywords they’re ranking for. 

Always check your content

It’s handy to have your list of keywords on hand when writing, but it’s not uncommon to forget to weave a few in. But don’t worry, there’s an easy way to double check that your content is well optimised. SEO content checker tools such as Yoast will allow you to run your content through the tool and tell you which keywords you’re targeting, along with any gaps that you aren’t utilising. 

The Semrush content checker is an incredibly powerful tool for this, and analyses a range of different SEO aspects, even offering an overall score to let you know how strong your content is. Checking your content for keywords is essential before pushing your work live, else you may miss out on potential traffic from missing keywords. 

Conclusion

It’s clear that keyword research is an incredibly powerful skill to possess in a world dominated by search engines. We hope that this article has offered some useful insight into the topic, and has left you ready to go do some keyword research of your own. 


Hungry for more SEO tips and tricks? Check out our recent post on SEO strategies that generate traffic in 2022. Don’t forget to follow us on Linkedin, Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date with the world of apprenticeships.

My experience of using the Surfer tool to do on-page SEO

SurferSEO is a useful tool for digital marketers that are looking to carry out on-page analyses of their sites. The audit tab on the SurferSEO site allows marketers to fully optimise their pages, in an attempt to improve their ranking on the Google SERP. Surfer pulls data from the search engine results page, comparing your content to your top competitors. If you or your company want to improve your on-page SEO, then Surfer could be the tool for you.

This blog post will cover the basics of using SurferSEO and its most beneficial features, including Surfer audits and Surfer content editor. Keep reading if you want to explore the Surfer tool in more detail and find out top tips on how to use the platform effectively.

Surfer SEO
SurferSEO

Features of a Surfer audit

There are many features of running a Surfer audit that will help you to improve your content, and in turn, improve your page’s ranking on the SERP.

Word count

When you run an audit on your existing page, Surfer will provide you with a suggestion of the ideal word count for your specific title and niche. The suggested word count is based on your top competitor’s content and is a guideline that you should follow to achieve a first-page ranking on the SERP.

Keywords

One of the best features of running a Surfer audit is that they highlight which essential keywords are missing from your page. Keywords are crucial if you want your page to rank highly on the SERP, so the fact Surfer showcases keywords that aren’t on your page is extremely beneficial for digital marketers. By adding missing keywords throughout your audit, your Surfer score will increase. You should aim for a Surfer score of at least 70 if you want to see any improvements in your page’s ranking.

Headings and paragraphs

Surfer suggests how many headings and paragraphs your content should have. The number of headings is important, as if your page has fewer H2s than recommended, it could mean that your page is not covering the topic in its entirety.

Surfer Audit
SurferSEO Audit

Surfer content editor

Not only can you run audits on existing pages using SurferSEO, but you can also create new content using the optimisation platform. By accessing the content editor tab, you can write your unique content directly onto the Surfer platform, taking full advantage of the features of an audit, such as keyword suggestions.

Surfer Content Editor
Surfer Content Editor

Similar to a Surfer audit, the Surfer content editor highlights the recommended word count, heading count, and paragraph count. It also spotlights keywords related to your niche that you should include in your content. Once you have completed your content using Surfer, then you can copy it over to your preferred platform, such as WordPress to publish the page. Remember to clear the formatting once you have copied the content over from Surfer to avoid any faulty code.

Top tips for using Surfer

Here are a few top tips to remember when you start using SurferSEO to either optimise existing content or create new content:

  • Make sure you set the location as your target geographical demographic. For example, if you want to target an audience based in the UK, set your location as the United Kingdom for your audits and content.
  • You can change your competitors using the SERP Analyzer tool, to remove sites that have extensive domain authority that will make it hard to rank against.
  • SurferSEO is a beneficial tool but it isn’t always perfect. If a keyword doesn’t make sense within the context of your article, don’t use it. Use Surfer as a guide but make sure to rely on your own digital marketing knowledge to make informed decisions.
  • If you are uncertain about how to use certain features on the SurferSEO site, then access the How to Use tab. This tab has a series of blog posts that outline how to use every Surfer tool.

Customer testimonials

Don’t just take it from me. SurferSEO has amassed many 5-star reviews from customers that have used their platform to optimise their own pages. Here is an example of a testimonial left by a previous client:

With NLP words introduced into three, already optimized articles, we managed to reach the top five in Google search for relevant keywords. Within the first month of using Surfer, we recorded 15% organic traffic growth. Now it’s an essential part of our content creation process.

Oksana Kosachenko
GetResponse (Via surferseo.com)

Summary

For digital marketers looking to improve their digital marketing strategy, SurferSEO is a beneficial tool that they could incorporate into their marketing plan. SEO specialists can use the audit feature to optimise existing pages, with the intention of improving their ranking in the SERP and increasing the organic traffic to their site. They can also use the content editor feature to create unique and optimised content for their websites. As a digital marketing apprentice, this tool could help you create high-quality content that produces results for your company. It is easy to use and has been proven to help improve organic traffic and SERP ranking.

Our Top 5 SEO Tips for Apprentices

seo tips blog title

If you’re new to the world of digital marketing, some of the fancy jargon and terminology can be a tad intimidating. But it doesn’t need to be. We’ve put together our top 5 SEO tips for beginners and apprentices who are struggling to know where to start with their marketing.

Before we go any further, let’s address the elephant in the room. What is SEO? Simply put, it’s an abbreviation for a marketing phrase that you’re likely to come across countless times during the span of your career. So, drum roll please…

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

SEO is the process of driving more organic traffic to your website through free and natural search engine results. It’s all about taking steps to help a website or piece of content rank higher on search engines like Google, whether that’s on-page or off-page.

On-Page: Building content on your site that’s relevant and provides a good user experience.

Off-Page: Enhancing your website’s search engine ranking outside of the site through backlinks. We’ll get to those later.

Let’s get to the juicy stuff.

1. Keyword research

seo tips: keyword research

In simple terms, keyword research is the process of discovering words and phrases that people use in search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. Having said that, it’s important to not just choose the first keyword you find. Do your research.

When optimising your website content, you want Google to pick your website for being the most relevant. That’s why it’s important to make sure you’re using appropriate keywords. To find them, you can use any online keyword research tool which will bring you results for the term you searched as well as any similar ones.

Some useful tools include Ahrefs, Ubersuggest and SEMrush. These tools will also tell you more about the search volume and the keyword difficulty too.

Using relevant keywords within your content is part of what’s known as a “white hat strategy”. You’ll create the best content possible and in return build a sustainable audience. However, you want to make sure that you’re not stuffing your keywords. That’s where one of our next SEO tips comes in.

2. Avoid black hat strategies

seo tips: avoid black hat strategies

Black hat strategies refer to going for quick gains and this is a big no-no with the search engines. It involves duplicating content, keyword stuffing, adding invisible keywords, and linking from sites with irrelevant content. Although this may work in the short term, if your website is found to be doing any of this, search engines will penalise you and could even blacklist your site. Don’t do it!

3. Understand user intent

SEO tips: understand user intent

This is an important one. Google puts A LOT of emphasis on intent. It wants to understand what the searcher is looking for when they type something into the search bar. As the content creator, it’s important for you to understand this as well.

Having a clearer idea on what users are searching for is a head start to being able to optimise your web content. Answer the public is a great tool that shows you popular searches and queries that you can then use to create useful content that matches the searcher’s intent. This could be informational, transactional, navigational, or local. Make sure you’re the one providing the user with the right answer.

4. Monitor the results

seo tips: monitor the results

Next on our list of SEO tips – monitor the results! As with any activity in marketing, you need to make sure that you’re monitoring the results of whatever it is you’re doing. That includes SEO.

If you can see an improvement in your work, great! Keep it going and remember that SEO is a constant marketing activity. You don’t just do it once. You need to keep coming back and checking it.

If you see little improvement or worse, a decrease, then stop. Try some new keywords or maybe a different blog topic. By monitoring the results, you’ll be able to quickly identify any issues.

5. Build trust with backlinks

build trust with backlinks

Backlinks are links from one website to a page on another website. They’re crucial to SEO. Authoritative backlinks are one of the most important signals that Google considers when ranking content. Having high-quality backlinks from reliable sources that are relevant to the content on your website is a recipe for SEO success and building trust. It may take a while to build up, but the results are worth it. Guest posting and creating content that people find useful are the first steps in generating backlinks for your website.

The SEO Tips Takeaway

To conclude, SEO features a variety of activities that need regular and consistent maintenance. That includes researching the right keywords, sticking to respectable techniques, knowing your customer, monitoring results and building trust with backlinks.

For more tips and tricks on how to develop your digital marketing skills and the latest apprenticeship opportunities, keep up to date with our blog.

How to Improve SEO in 5 Simple Steps

The acronym “SEO” on a plain white background

Why is SEO Important?

SEO, also known as search engine optimisation, is the process of improving your website in order to increase its visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs). SEO is vital to every online business, whether you have an e-commerce website or run a blog like us, search engine optimisation can benefit everyone. The better visibility your site has, the more traffic and new visitors you will get to your website, and we all know that increasing organic traffic is one of the most important tasks in digital marketing.

Improve SEO in 5 Easy Steps

  1. Research relevant keywords
  2. Improve website speed
  3. Optimise page content
  4. Optimise title tags and meta descriptions
  5. Build links

Research Relevant Keywords

Keywords are the ‘key’ to successful search engine optimisation. Keywords are used by potential users and customers every day. When you’re using a search engine, what are you searching for? Most of the time you are using keywords to find relevant results, you probably used keywords to find this blog! That is what makes keywords the foundation of SEO.

So how do you perform keyword research? Researching for relevant keywords is easy, there are loads of keyword researching tools available to help you in your search for the perfect keyword list. The first tool we suggest is Google. 5,6 billion searches are done on Google every day, so where is a better place to find keywords. You can use features such as auto-complete search, ‘people also ask’ section, and top search results. These features from Google show what potential customers are searching for, helping you to get in the mind of the customers.

You can also use keyword research sites to help you find the best keywords for your business. The benefit of keyword research sites is that you can see search volume and difficulty. The volume shows you how often that keyword is searched for, this is useful because you want to get a high volume of searches, however, you need to take into account the difficulty of the word. Keyword difficulty refers to how easy it is to rank for that specific keyword. If you are a small business it will be easier for you to rank in SERPs for low volume, low difficulty keywords. One free keyword tool you could use is Uber Suggests.

Once you know which keywords you want to rank for it will make SEO seem a breeze!

Improve Website Speed

Improving website speed can be difficult, that’s why we have one simple tip anyone can do that will help you improve your website speed instantly! This tip is to remove any images that are over 300KB and replace them with images that have a smaller file size. Large file size images take longer to load, this can result in pages that aren’t fully loaded and can also cause page shifting when they finally do load in. So now, you may be wondering how do you make image sizes smaller? It’s easy, there are hundreds of free sites that you can use which will make your images smaller, all you have to do is upload the image. One site we suggest is Reduce Images.

Optimise Page Content

The second step you can take to optimise your page content is to add image alt text. Image alt text is copy that appears in place of the image if that image fails to load, it also helps webpage crawlers understand what the image is showing and how it relates to the content on that page, in turn, this will improve your ranking. Image alt text is important to get right, you want to be detailed while not having too much text. Using keywords in your image alt text can also help with boosting your page rank. Below we have attached an example of good and bad image alt text to give you a better idea of what it should look like.

A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background

Bad Alt Text: “cute small dog pink background”

Good Alt Text: “A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background”

Optimise Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

Optimising a title tag and meta description is just like content optimisation, all you need is relevant keywords for the content. When you have your relevant keywords, you are able to create your title tag. You want this to be similar to the page title, and you want to use similar keywords in your title tag that you use in your page content. Doing this allows search engines to understand the content of your page, and will rank it highly for being consistent in its messaging. 

Meta descriptions are harder as they are longer summaries of the page, but make the most of this space. Meta descriptions should keep between 140-160 characters long. This gives you enough room to hit a few keywords and give a brief summary of the contents of the page. When writing your meta description keep in mind your USPs (unique selling points) this is a feature search engines will praise you on. You want your description to be a compelling argument as to why someone should click on it. Below we have added an example of a good and bad meta description. 

Good meta description: “Find all of the best phones and tariffs on the official Carphone Warehouse site – Shop Apple, Samsung, Sony and Google for a new phone with all the latest deals”

Bad meta description: “Apple iPhone 6.9” screen touch screen face ID, 11th gen great deals O2, Three and EE. Shop Carphone Warehouse”

Building Links

Last but not least is linking. Building inbound links allows Google to see how trustworthy you are, if you have inbound links coming from big, trustworthy companies, then Google is more likely to see your website as credible and so will increase SERP ranking. One easy way of building these links is through affiliate marketing sites such as Awin. Affiliate marketing is when you gain publishers to put ads on their website for your company, and they get a commission from doing this, these commissions can be from sales made or generated leads. By using affiliate links you are able to communicate with big and trustworthy companies to give a larger online presence to your brand and website. It also allows you to choose whose site you have links on, meaning you can pick websites and pages related to your company.

You can also do external links, this is where you add links on your website to other websites. By doing this you further increase the credibility of your website, while also improving the reader’s experience by providing them with outside references.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, SEO doesn’t have to be as hard as it looks. If you follow these 5 simple steps, whether you’re a business owner or are doing a digital marketing apprenticeship, you can increase organic traffic with ease. 

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Top tips for your Web Content as a Digital Marketer

Man in Striped Long Sleeve Shirt Sitting on Table Using Laptop writing web content with ApprenticeTIps.com logo in bottom right

Having trouble with your web content? As a Digital Marketer your web content should be the cornerstone of your output. As a result of this it is crucial that what goes on your website is to a high standard and above all engaging!

No matter what Content Management System (CMS) you use whether it is WordPress, Joomla or Jadu, this article will help provide an easy-to-follow web content framework for you.

Aims of Web Content

Before you post anything on your website it is important to identify what the aims and objectives are for that web content. This should have been agreed in a marketing plan or campaign plan during the planning stage of a project/campaign. An example of this could be: To provide information on apprenticeships in the UK to help grow the business.

All content should work together to help reach the agreed goal, in other words don’t just post for the sake of posting but upload content that is engaging, original and targeted.

Having a content/project managing plan is helpful to ensure what you are posting matches the aims.

User Experience

Now you know why you are posting; the next step is thinking how you are posting. You will have heard the phrase ‘customer is king’, this applies to web content too! If the user doesn’t find what you are posting easy to read, engaging and original it is unlucky they will return to your site or content in the future. Using the Yoast plugin’s readability function can help with ensuring your content is of the highest quality and what you may need to improve it. If text is too long and confusing then it may need simplifying, think to yourself can I say this in less words?

You need to ensure all links within your content are up-to-date and working because if someone is sent off your site to the wrong place, they might not find your content trustworthy or could not return. Using website monitoring tools such as SilkTide and Monsido run regular scans of your site’s content and provide reports on spelling mistakes, grammar issues and broken links.

Accessibility within your Web Content

When posting anything to your website you need to take everyone into consideration. As a result of this you provide yourself the biggest possible user base. When including links into your content make sure it is within the text and makes sense instead of just having a ‘click here’ link, as these can cause an issue for those using screen readers on your site. Similarly, if an image has been used Alt-text should be applied to it. Alt-text allows for an image to be described to someone who is using a screen reader on your site, so this will allow them to engage with your content the way you intended.

"Designers should always keep their users in mind" on laptop screen

SEO Optimisation

The next step is to ensure your web content can be found. There is little point to posting content no one is going to see; this is where SEO comes in. You will need to do some keyword research and decide what search terms you want to be found for. Using tools like Google Trends can help you decide if you want to target a highly competitive keyword which will be harder to be found for or a less competitive keyword which will have a lower possible user base.  Now you know your keyword you want all the content you post to be SEO Optimised. Using Yoast plugin will help you track how optimised your content is.

Key factors in SEO Optimisation include:

  • Keyword Density
  • Meta Description length
  • Mobile Friendliness
  • Internal and External Links
  • Content length

Success of your Web Content

You’ve posted your engaging, optimised and accessible now what? The next stage is to track the success of your web content. The most popular tool used by digital marketers is Google Analytics, this is because Google is the most used search engine, this is what you want to be ranked on.

Google Analytics provides a wide variety of data such as:

  • Unique Page View
  • Time on Page
  • Bounce Rate
  • Sessions

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) will have been agreed in a marketing plan and these will provide the framework for what you are tracking. An example of a KPI for web content could be: Increase our average page views each month by 20%, this can be achieved with SEO optimising the posts and increasing the rankings.

Conclusion

These tips should help you on your way to posting engaging, optimised and accessible content, to meet those aims! If you would like to know more about any of the topics mentioned within this article, please find out more on our website.  

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5 Reasons Why Blogging Is Essential For Your Marketing Strategy

why-blogging-is-essential-image

When it comes to marketing it is important to ensure that you are always up to date with the latest trends and marketing techniques. A consistent marketing tactic that has been used for several years is blogging, although it has developed along the way. Some people may view blogging as an old-fashioned approach however when used to its full capabilities it becomes an essential element for any business. Regardless of what genre of company you run, it’s vital that you have a blog and here are 5 reasons why.

  1. Blogs can help to attract new customers
  2. Blogs provide an insight into your brand
  3. Blogging improves SEO
  4. Blog content helps with your social presence
  5. Blogging boosts brand awareness

Blogs Can Help To Attract New Customers

Blogging is a key component to any digital marketing strategy, and it is proven to increase leads as well as direct more traffic to your website. Provided that your blog posts are well-written and informative readers should be able to gain an insight into your business and the products or services you have to offer. Blogging not only provides a platform for creative and informative content but it also allows you to showcase calls-to-action that make it easy to convert into leads.

Blogs Provide An Insight Into Your Brand

A blog provides a platform to tell your brands story, it is a great way of giving consumers a better insight into your company, employees and the product or service you offer. Writing a blog post is an opportunity for marketers to share the brand identity through tone of voice and personality which will in time build up a customers trust and increase brand likability.

Demonstrates how to create a blog post

Blogging Improves SEO

Content is key when it comes to producing blog posts and as marketing has evolved blogging has played a huge part in improving a company’s SEO performance. When you develop a blog, you are able to reach a wider range of search queries. Blogging is great for generating broader search results that your website alone would not be able to attract.

Adding a blog to your website is an easy, yet effective way of increasing the amount keywords and search queries you can rank for on Google. This makes it easier for potential customers find YOU!

Blog Content Helps With Your Social Presence

Creating regular blog posts for your business can help to direct people to your social media platforms. Every time you are publishing a new article you are producing helpful content that people can share across various social networks which in turn will help with brand awareness. Blog content helps to boost social presence by driving new visitors to your blog via different social channels.

Blogging Boosts Brand Awareness

When you product blog content on a regular basis this will naturally increase your brand visibility. It can only take one relatable post for your post to go viral which will in turn increase your audience. Blogging allows you to determine an authentic voice and persona behind the brand image and logo.

The best way to grow your business is by providing the information that customers are searching for. Blog posts can broaden your site visitors while still staying within an appropriate target audience.

To Conclude

Whether you’re a small business owner or blogger, your blog is an extension of the company’s online presence. It provides value by providing information on what sets them apart from others in the industry. It also showcases products that can help people achieve success with whatever goal might be important enough for this purpose!

A blog is a great way to reduce your marketing spend, increase website traffic and generate new leads. But most importantly for businesses: blogging provides value in the form of content that helps build strong customer relationships!

What is SEO?

Imagine you are a bakery owner who wants to expand your business, so what do you do? You decide to create an online presence by creating a blog. You begin posting on your blog regularly, however even after regular posting of your blogs there were hardly any visitors. What’s your solution? Search Engine Optimisation

SEO is used to improve the quality and quantity of people coming to your website from search engines. It can also increase brand awareness, attract local customers and build credibility and trust and all this is possible without the pain of throwing money at it. In order to do this you’d need to utilise both forms of SEO which are on and off page SEO. On page should always come first which involves you optimising your website both in terms of content and technical aspects including the html source code schema meta tags and more!

You begin by using Google ads to find hot keywords/phrases used when people search for the recipes you are planning to post on your blog. Look for the search terms also linked to wider areas of baking such as cooking and hand related topics. Once you find these search terms begin incorporating these into your recipes, start by providing an introduction to the recipe and with this you can provide a really engaging start to your story like how this dish is close to your childhood and naturally include your search terms into the blog.

 Also include these keywords in the actual recipe where you can. Additionally add images, time lapses, videos and more to increase credibility & engagement for your content and consequently convince the search engines to show your content to more people. After this you should move to the site’s meta content which search engines display when your blog appears in search results. Optimise your search tags, alt tags and more. In simplistic terms this completes the on site part of your SEO. 

Now let’s explore what you can do off page to improve your pages visibility on search engines like google. Off page requires you to do things outside your site’s page in order to improve your search engines ranking. Making optimisations outside your site will help improve your website’s popularity, trustworthiness and relevance. This is possible when reputable sites vouch for your content with backlinks, social media marketing, guest blogging, linked/unlinked brand mentions, influencer marketing and much more. Using social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will help give you a wider reach for your site by sending powerful social signals to search engines leading to your page being highly relevant to related searches and audiences. After knowing and implementing all this you have still just scratched the surface of what is possible with SEO.

Once you understand the fundamentals of SEO you will begin your journey to becoming an SEO expert. If you follow the structure discussed in this blog you’ll have a great foundation going forward and all you need to do now is delve deeper, continue to learn and most importantly give it a go! Practice makes perfect and this is no truer than when it comes to improving a site’s SEO. Trial different keywords and writing styles, start social channels to compliment your site and if you’re feeling adventurous reach out to influencers in your field and ask them to promote your blog.

Dos and Don’ts for Google Analytics in Digital Marketing

Photo of Google sign on the top of a building.

Google Analytics is a free web analytics software used to look at the current performance of websites and identify web traffic. It has many capabilities and is arguably a tool that you could continue developing your skills in with time.

DO: Take the time to do Google Certifications

There are free Google Analytics certifications that you can complete which are provided by Google itself. They’re extremely comprehensive and give you the opportunity to learn more about the platform from a theoretical and practical standpoint.

Google Analytics Academy only requires a Google account so it won’t require a separate account. If you have no prior knowledge about Google Analytics, Analytics Academy will walk you through the report and analytics basics. If you already know the basics, there are Advanced Analytics courses you can complete which will give you a better understanding of more advanced things you can do on Google Analytics.

The form of each learning differs, but most follow the structure of videos that goes through the learning. If videos don’t work for you, there are transcripts which offer as much information as the videos. On certain modules, there are additional resources you can use to help recap what you have learnt. Other modules have Google Analytics demos so you can walk through what it would be like to create reports and generate data.

If you are someone that works best with mini assessments, then you’re in luck! Analytics Academic has small assessments at the end of each module that recaps what you were taught. You can’t progress any further until you get a pass mark of at least 80% and completing that in every assessment means you can gain a certificate of completion.

You can also complete the Google Analytics Individual Qualification which is available on Google Skillshop. This certification only lasts for a year so you will need to refresh your certification every year. However, it tests you on knowledge from the Google Analytics for Beginners and Advanced Analytics courses.

DON’T: Forget to include Google Analytics tracking code to webpages!

It’s all well and good to have Google Analytics to collect data, but where does it come from? Without linking the Analytics account to the webpage, it won’t collect any data. For any webpages you want data on, connect it to Google Analytics using the Google Analytics tracking code.

If you find there is still no data coming through, check to see if your tracking code is up-to-date. Any outdated or invalid tracking codes will not collect any information, so this will be worth updating for Analytics data.

Photo of someone working on a laptop with a Google Analytics report.
Photo by Myriam Jessier on Unsplash

DO: Make use of segments

Segments are a subset of your visitors that match certain criteria that you set ahead of time. They can be extremely useful to understand how people of different demographics may behave and see if there are trends in any particular data. You can get extremely detailed with segments and this can be applied to other reporting. Segments can also help you create custom audiences for your marketing campaigns as well as providing clear insights.

For example, you can create segments with a geographical segmentation of people living in England, or a town in England. You could also create segments that track returning users based on browser history or IP address.

DON’T: Lose sight of what you are tracking

Google Analytics has a lot of capabilities and it can get very complicated and overwhelming if you try to understand everything at once. Therefore, it is important to understand what you want to look for, and what your targets are. Important metrics like bounce rate and organic traffic are good ones to always look out for as it can give you an idea of what to improve on your website.

Take some time to sit down and do some research on industry benchmarks so you know what to reach for. Analytics does update regularly, but work on your website will take time, so it’s good to be patient and wait to see how it improves.

DO: Use Google Analytics’ Custom Reports

Using Google’s standard parameters, whilst handy, has limited personalisation to your business. Custom Reports are ways of creating reports with specific filters or segments that can make your reports more personalised to your business as well as easier to navigate. It is likely you will be looking at many similar reports, so using Custom Reports to create reports that are personalised to what data you want will be extremely beneficial.

With Custom Reports, you will be able to customise five elements of custom reports: users, sessions, hits, metrics and dimensions. You can change the presentation of the report as well, so it represents your data in the best way possible. The different report types include: explorer, flat table and map overlay. Explorer is the basic report with a line graph and data table; a flat table is a sortable data table; and a map overlay is a global map with colours to indicate engagement, traffic, etc.

For example, you could create a custom Acquisitions report to look at the activity on your website at specific dates and times. This could help you understand what times your website has more traffic and try to identify why this may be.

DON’T: Forget to check your Google Analytics data regularly

This may be an obvious tip, but if you leave your data for a long while, you won’t get a long-term view of how your website is performing. It’s good to pull weekly and monthly data to see if there are any sudden changes on your website. You can also leave notes on reports so you know what the state of your website was at that time.

The longer you have Google Analytics, the more data you can use to your advantage. Keeping a reporting spreadsheet can be extremely beneficial to not just yourself, but to any SEO and SEM work.

Conclusion

This isn’t an exhaustive list and there are definitely more things you can and can’t do with Google Analytics. As a digital marketing apprentice, you will learn how your company uses Google Analytics and what you can do. With basic training and application, you’ll find the data analytics software to be incredibly useful across multiple marketing disciplines. By remembering some of these key tips and spending time to familiarise yourself with Google Analytics, you will be a pro at generating data and reports in no time!

If you’re interested in finding out the technical applications of Google Analytics, check out some of our other articles:

Dos and Don’ts for PPC Digital Marketing Campaigns

How to Build a Strong Website and Increase SEO

UTM tracking parameters | Digital Marketing Apprenticeship Tips

Top tips for a digital marketer

Work can sometimes feel overwhelming, and you aren’t sure what to do. Marketing is no different. Knowing the right tricks of the trade or the best method for completing tasks is something you usually learn as you develop into your role. With technology being ever-changing, especially online, any digital marketer needs to have a strong understanding of trends.

Email marketing and social media can be difficult to perform well at. Understanding how to market to your target audience is pivotal to the success of your brand. In order to fully get a grip on your role, here are 5 top tips for any new digital marketer.

digital marketer

Understanding your target audience

Before you can even start marketing, you need to have a firm understanding of your audience. Completing a market analysis is a good way forward for this. Alternatively, you can have a look at competitors in your industry and see who they market to. Market research can help you define your target audience so that you can market accurately. You wouldn’t want to create material that appeals to over-50s if your products are popular with 16-25s.

If you have joined an existing company in a training role, then they may have this already sorted out. Make sure to ask colleagues if you are unsure. Once you know who your audience is, you can see what they are into. With research, you can get a fundamental understanding of how to proceed. See what interests your audience, and then create content relating to it.

SEO

SEO or Search Engine Optimisation helps how well your website ranks on search engines like Google. Everything that you post, from social media to blog posts, can be affected in some way by SEO. It is always a priority to make sure content has been optimised fully. There are many different factors to SEO, such as meta titles/descriptions, images, tags, and the content itself.

Keywords and topics are also very important for your ranking. Make sure to always use a relevant keyword for what you are wanting to rank for. Topics, which are groups of related keywords, can also help you with your ranking and optimisation.

Generally, SEO can seem quite straightforward. Meta descriptions should be kept between 140-150 words, keywords should be used, and content should be fresh and relevant. However, there are many more factors to SEO you will need to understand as a digital marketer. There are plenty of sources online to help you learn the best SEO techniques

The importance of backlinks as a digital marketer

Backlinking is when other websites link back to a target webpage on your website. High DA websites linking to your website is a serious ranking factor on Google. The more sites that can link to your website and webpage, the higher authority you will have, and the better ranking.

Consider outreaching to others to link to your site. You should always try and aim for high DA sites, as having too many low DA rating sites can seem “spammy” to Google, and negatively affect your rating.

Email marketing

Email marketing is a good way to reach your audience on another platform other than your website and social media. There are tools out there, such as Mailchimp, which can help you learn good techniques for marketing effectively. Keywords and word counts come into play when email marketing. Ideally, any text should be kept short and concise, to help with click rates. People don’t enjoy reading a large amount of text when opening a newsletter, so keep it to the point.

Another factor is the subject and title you use for the newsletter. Make sure the title is snappy and attention-grabbing. Consider a variety of different email campaigns. Promotional emails may do better than an average newsletter. Find out what works best for your business.

Conclusion

There are many different factors to working as a digital marketer. Some factors can change overnight in some cases, so it’s always good to keep a close eye on the trends. If you are interested in learning more, visit ApprenticeTips.