Can you tell us a little about your presentation at the Festival?
I will speak about how to establish an effective SEO strategy in a multi-device search reality; which are the additional criteria to take into consideration and the tools to use to facilitate our work.
How do the approaches to mobile SEO differ from desktop?
Mobile, as well as desktop should be part of a multi-device SEO approach that takes into consideration and optimize for the specific characteristics, behavior, requirements, restrictions, specific search rankings factors and potential of each platform; making the most out of it.
Some of the aspects that are more important to take into consideration when optimizing for mobile is the balance between the content optimization (its volume, organization, technology used) vs. the speed & space limitations.
Additionally, in dependence on which type of mobile web approach is taken – responsive, parallel or dynamic – there’s the need to set it with tags, user agent detection and redirects so search engines can correctly identify it.
What are your thoughts on the best approach to mobile optimisation?
For some web businesses it could be directly a responsive web approach but for others this might not be enough.
They might need to personalize all their offer, from content to specific promotions to their mobile audience. They might have identified that their mobile audience behavior was completely different than the one of their desktop one, which would make them need a dynamic serving approach.
What do you think Google’s next move could be when it comes to mobile search?
App search. ASO is in its infancy. Google has already started enabling deep links for app content and this is only the beginning for a better and more mature app search experience and results.
Is optimising for mobile even more essential when appealing to international markets?
It depends on each country and the industry specific behavior. In some countries or in some specific industries too, like for locally targeted businesses.
For example, smartphones are more popular in some areas, or even the main way to search on the web.
This is why it is a must to always validate at the beginning with a research that not only takes into consideration the keywords and terms used, but the share per device type and the specific query behavior per device.
For example, I was doing a keyword research the other day for Mexico and Colombia for the same business, and not only the search volume and type of keywords differed but also the search audience using computers vs. mobile vs. tablets:
What are some of the mistakes you see when brands launch international sites?
Most of the mistakes are caused by the lack of an appropriate research and targeted strategy for each international web presence; which end-up making the sites:
- Not having correctly translated or localized content and overall web presence for the targeted audience.
- Showing some of the content in English despite being targeted to the French audience, leaving the URLs in English by default, showing prices in Dollars despite being targeted to a UK audience.
- Not having a clear international target, with a mixed country, language and region web versions, which end-up generating international search results misalignment issues, such as ranking with the Spain web version in Google’s Mexican results, or in the Google’s US results with the UK version etc.
- To create the same piece of content, prioritize their product or service offer and promote them in the exact same way in all of their markets without taking into consideration the different seasonalities, cultural differences and interests, etc. which will end-up making them to fail in most of the international markets.
How do approaches to SEO differ between countries?
An SEO process will differ from country to country in dependence on the spoken language and local terms used, the search behavior of the local audience, the potential search volume & competitors for the relevant products, services or business; seasonality, local & cultural preferences, etc.
So, even if two different countries might speak the same language, the SEO efforts and strategies used might differ.
This is both technical and cultural: one product could be more attractive than other, the high seasons could be different influencing the type of terms which are targeted; the local competitors might be others with different competition level and therefore the need of content and links related resources might be different, etc.
With link building becoming more difficult, is content now the main tool for SEOs?
Content, resources, assets, your own products and offering. For me is about how you answer your audience needs and connect with them, how well you identify the web ecosystem around your business operations, from brand, community and competitors and make the most of it too.
Content is of course is fundamental, but ‘just build the right content’ is a failed approach if you look to attract links.
Links are endorsements created by your audience so your content (and whatever you create) needs to be promoted to become visible to your target market, especially at the beginning.
What’s one piece of advice you would give for those looking to get the most out of mobile and international search?
Don’t implement anything based purely on ‘best practices’ without doing your own analysis and research, especially when it means a high level of investment.
Analyze which mobile approach or international market is the right one or the most attractive for you specifically; the one that would fulfill your needs, comply with your requirements and provide the expected ROI; by researching, analyzing and if in doubt, developing tests.
Aleyda will be speaking at our Festival of Marketing event in November, a two-day celebration of the modern marketing industry, featuring speakers from brands including LEGO, Tesco, Barclays, FT.com and more.