A brief ‘Where Am I?’, ‘What Am I?’, and ‘Who Am I?’ in Digital Marketing…
…Or Some Recent Useful Information for Web Masters
I wanted to put together a short post on some relatively recent developments in digital marketing that webmasters might like to think about implementing. What follows are a few brief tricks, or tips, that should be quick and easy to implement and will hopefully help leave your customer both in a better position to win more business as well as better placed to adapt to the future of the web.
Where Am I?
With the rise in both companies targeting content to users in specific locations, and the mobile web, search engines (specifically Google) are becoming more concerned with delivering content relevant to the geographical location of the searcher.
- Local: If your customer’s business serves local customers directly from a specific location, this is good reason to ensure that they have both Google Places and Bing for Business listings.
- National: Sites can be targeted at particular geographical regions in Bing by using the geo place name, and geo region codes. For instance:
<meta name=”geo.region” content=”GB-HAM” />
<meta name=”geo.placename” content=”Portsmouth” />
<meta name=”geo.position” content=”51.08952;-1.216844″ />
<meta name=”ICBM” content=”51.08952, -1.216844″ />
- International: If your customer has particular pages, or sub-folders, on his or her domain that are targeted at particular countries then these can be specified in Google webmaster tools. To do this simply add the URL of the page, or folder, to webmaster tools as if it were a new site, and then in the settings specify the target of the site to the required country. In this way you can let Google know that you consider a page in French to be targeted at visitors from France.
What Am I?
As the web continues to evolve, the search engines (in this case: Google, Bing, and Yahoo in collaboration) are looking at ways to return more intelligent content to the user. One initiative under way is the use of ‘rich snippets’, or structured mark-up, to help the search engines better categorise sites and pages (for more information visit www.schema.org).
Search terms on their own can be ambiguous. For instance, a search for ‘Mercury’ does not differentiate between the element, the planet, or the singer.
Rich snippets enable the search engines to categories the content of sites and pages. For instance: by specifying whether the page is about an event, a place, an organisation, or contains a review.
One can image that in certain cases this will allow the search engines to disambiguate a searcher’s intention, and so return the best possible result.
While rich snippets are still in the process of being adopted, they will undoubtedly make a difference to the way in which results are returned; and so if you are not using rich snippets it is worthwhile implementing them for your customers.
Who Am I?
As the web becomes more social, specifically in the light of Google’s recent move to ‘search plus [the] world’, it is important for your customer to verify his or her website to Google+. Ensuring that your customer has a Google+ for business page, and verifying it to their website, should help both appear in a search for the business name.
One benefit of this is that it takes up more of the SERP (search engine results pages) with information about your customer and leaves less room for results from competitors.
To verify a Google+ page as representative of a business you can either place the Google+ logo on the site, or add the following:
<link rel=”publisher” href=”https://plus.google.com/[yourpageID]” />
More information on linking a Google+ business page to a site can be found here .