The Barriers to a Data-Friendly Business: Turning Your Focus Outward

Every business wants to know their customers better. Yet many businesses are inward looking. What has to change? When you want to save a file in your favorite application, which icon do most apps offer up? Why it’s the image of a 3.5″ flopp…

Every business wants to know their customers better. Yet many businesses are inward looking. What has to change? When you want to save a file in your favorite application, which icon do most apps offer up? Why it’s the image of a 3.5″ floppy disc, of course.   Why is it that the universal icon […]

The post The Barriers to a Data-Friendly Business: Turning Your Focus Outward appeared first on Conversion Sciences.

The 3 Ps to growing your agency – position, price and pitch

Want to grow your agency profitably? Setting your agency apart from the competition is all about knowing exactly what your client is looking for and being able to frame your pitch around those specific needs. Marketing automation can help you meet those needs. And adding marketing automation to your agency’s services can help you add […]

The post The 3 Ps to growing your agency – position, price and pitch appeared first on Marketing Land.

Want to grow your agency profitably? Setting your agency apart from the competition is all about knowing exactly what your client is looking for and being able to frame your pitch around those specific needs. Marketing automation can help you meet those needs. And adding marketing automation to your agency’s services can help you add new clients and drive revenue from existing ones.

Renowned agency consultant and coach Karl Sakas discusses how to package marketing automation services within a proven framework. He explains how you can:

  • Segment your agency services into 3 easy tiers.
  • Price and bundle services within each tier.
  • Get more revenue per client by switching up your approach.

Visit Digital Marketing Depot to download “Position, Price & Pitch: The 3 Ps to Growing Your Agency.”

The post The 3 Ps to growing your agency – position, price and pitch appeared first on Marketing Land.

How to Create a Sales Funnel in 5 Minutes

Building a smooth customer journey is key to business and revenue growth. Here’s how to create a sales funnel that works in just 5 minutes. You may not believe you already have one or more sales funnels in place, but all businesses do. Maybe it’s not w…

Building a smooth customer journey is key to business and revenue growth. Here’s how to create a sales funnel that works in just 5 minutes. You may not believe you already have one or more sales funnels in place, but all businesses do. Maybe it’s not working as expected. Or perhaps you would like to […]

The post How to Create a Sales Funnel in 5 Minutes appeared first on Conversion Sciences.

The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Baby Products

Amazon’s “baby” section has certainly solidified itself as one of the site’s biggest and most popular categories, outperforming even megalith retailers like Walmart,… > Read More
The post The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Baby Products appeared first on R…

Amazon’s “baby” section has certainly solidified itself as one of the site’s biggest and most popular categories, outperforming even megalith retailers like Walmart,... > Read More

The post The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Baby Products appeared first on Retail Performance Marketing Blog - CPC Strategy.

5 Rules for Choosing the Right Words on Button Labels

What your buttons say is just as important as how they look. Using the wrong words on your button labels cause users confusion, more work, and slower task times.

What your buttons say is just as important as how they look. Using the wrong words on your button labels cause users confusion, more work, and slower task times. If you want users to take the right action on your app, you need to use the right words on your button labels.

The five rules for actionable button labels will help you choose the right words. Follow these five rules and you’ll make it easy for users to take the right action on your app whenever they come across a button.

Rule 1: Use Action Verbs

Your button labels should inspire users to act with action verbs. When users read an action verb, they instantly know what the button will do. This allows them to take action without having to read any supporting text such as confirmation screen dialog.

button_label-verbs

Compare that with generic “yes/no” button labels that are often used on confirmation screens. Users have to read the dialog before they can take action. If they skip or misread the dialog, they’ll likely press the wrong button. This not only makes taking action riskier, but it forces users to do more work.

In the example below, the buttons with action verbs are still actionable when the dialog is blocked out. But the buttons with “Yes/No” labels are not actionable without reading the dialog first.

button_label-actionable

Rule 2: Use Precise Diction

Each action verb you use has a specific connotation. If your diction isn’t precise, users can misinterpret what action the button does.

button_labels-diction

For example, the words “delete” and “remove” are similar in meaning, but they have different connotations. “Delete” implies that an item will be erased from the system. “Remove” implies that an item will be separated from a given group. Using them in the wrong context can cause users concern about pressing the button.

In the context of a playlist, the “delete” label makes users think they’ll lose their song. This is the wrong word choice because that’s not what happens. The “remove” label is more precise because the song is taken out of the playlist, but not lost.

Rule 3: Use Everyday Language

Words used in everyday language are more familiar to users than technical words and computer jargon. Familiar words on button labels allow users to understand the action quicker because they have more experience with them.

button_label-language

Everyday language does not include slang because only a small subset of people use and understand it. Use caution with slang because it becomes harder to understand when it’s translated to other languages.

To illustrate, the word “submit” is a technical term not used in everyday language. When users see it on a label, it’s unclear what the button will do. In contrast, the word “post” is used more often when discussing online publication. This makes “post” a better button label that’s quicker and easier to understand than “submit”.

Rule 4: Use the Active Imperative Form

The more words there are on a button label, the more carefully users have to read it. When you use the imperative form in an active voice, you minimize the number of words and make the button label easier to scan.

The active imperative form turns verb phrases into commands. This allows you to drop the subject and unnecessary articles for a concise button label. All that’s needed on your button label is a verb with an adverb or direct object.

button_labels-imperative

By using commands, the button labels become more authoritative and trustworthy. They give users a feeling of certainty that the button will perform the intended action. Users need this certainty when they’re making decisions.

When using the active imperative form, avoid instructional verbs that tell users how to use their device. A common mistake is to stick “click here” at the beginning of a button label. This not only makes the label wordy, but it’s also generic and redundant for the user. Instead, use verbs that are unique and describe the action to give users an incentive to “click.”

button_label-instructional

Rule 5: Use Sentence Style Capitalization

The capitalization style of your button label expresses your tone to users. Tone isn’t what you’re saying but how you’re saying it. This creates an emotional reaction in users that either engages or repels them.

button_label-sentence

A sentence style capitalization is best because it conveys a friendly that invites users to press your buttons. Most reading that users do is reading of sentences. This means they’re most familiar with sentence case. When they read it on your buttons, it feels like someone is speaking to them.

In contrast, title style capitalization has a more serious tone. A serious tone feels impersonal and makes buttons less inviting to press. When users read it, it feels like a machine is speaking to them instead of a person. Title case breaks the user’s natural reading flow and its odd appearance distracts them from understanding the message

button_label-uppercase

An all uppercase style isn’t good either because it conveys a loud and obnoxious tone. Users feel as if someone is screaming at them to press it. Not only that, but it also has lower readability due to the lack of word shape. This makes it inaccessible for users with dyslexia and other visual disabilities.

An all lowercase style conveys a flippant and lackadaisical tone. It makes users feel as if no care or attention was put into the button label. Users can sense a lack of professionalism and not trust the button.

Actions Speak as Loud as the Words

When it comes to button labels, the action speaks as loud as the words. If you choose the wrong words on your button labels, the call to action won’t matter.

The five rules of actionable button labels will guarantee that your buttons get some action. No longer will users have doubt, confusion, or fatigue when they read your buttons. Instead, they’ll have clarity and motivation to take the right action.

Case Study: How Pruning This Online Store’s Blog Boosted Strategic Content Revenue by 64%

For the subject of this case study, one of our clients benefited with a 64% increase in strategic content revenue after we helped to prune their blog content. Read on to learn more!

This content pruning case study demonstrates how deindexing blog content can lead to a better ROI from content overall.

Based on our experience auditing hundreds of online stores, we know that deindexing “dead-weight” pages is a relatively easy method to boost your SEO and revenue.

Most eCommerce stores focus on improving their content and expanding on it to improve their SEO. As you know, this often requires significant time and resources.

It’s counterintuitive, but you can increase the traffic brought in by your existing content without adding new content or improving existing content.

This can be done by deindexing low-performing blog posts.

Pruning low performing content typically requires way less work than adding more content. Thus, pruning is a tactic with a great ROI for eCommerce thanks to the high SEO impact and low investment of time and effort.

In this case study, we’re going to show you:

  • The criteria and process we use to quantitatively evaluate which content to deindex or remove.

  • How to determine which content to keep and allow Google to crawl.

  • How pruning pages for one of our eCommerce clients led to a 64% increase in revenue from their strategic blog content.

In short: If you want your best-performing strategic content to bring in even more traffic and revenue, you’ll want to read this case study. (Or contact us to see whether your site could benefit from a similar SEO strategy.)

The Benefits of Pruning Blog Content

It’s a persistently common misconception that more content is better.

Google released their Penguin update in 2012 to reward sites for having quality content. This was Google’s algorithm adjustment to improve user experience during a time when many websites tried to rank through mass-publishing low-quality content (like those 300 word keyword-stuffed articles).

Despite current best-practices, the idea that more content will always help a site rank hangs around quite stubbornly.

The bottom line is: You can’t assume that all of the pages on your site are helpful. The pages with low stats might be dragging your overall quality down.

In our audits of online stores, we’ve seen many lifts in traffic and revenue following a full content audit of both blog content and content in the store or shop pages. This involves a comprehensive analysis, followed by executing the action steps that will lead to improvement.

Usually, this results in deindexing up to 5%-20% of a store’s product and category pages in order to create better SEO results.

That said, we know that sometimes it takes a small SEO win through pruning a limited amount of content and seeing the results to get the confidence to do more.

For that reason, we’ll occasionally suggest starting with a strategic content audit (sometimes called a blog content audit) to “prove” the results from pruning non-catalog content first.

After seeing the positive and measurable results, most clients go on to perform an audit of catalog content as well.

For the subject of this case studyHomeScienceTools.coma store we assisted, benefited with a 64% increase in strategic content revenue after we helped to prune their blog content.

Pruning Dead Weight: A Real Life Example

HomeScienceTools.com is an online store that provides educational scientific products.

A screenshot of the Home Science Tools homepage

The “Learning Center” blog on this store is hosted on its own subdomain.

We did a content audit of Home Science Tools Blog

We performed a content audit of this section of the site and handed off our recommendations of pages to prune in early August, 2018.

This was followed by pruning roughly 200 pages, or about 10% of total pages from the blog’s subdomain. Starting with the worst quality offenders.

These pruned pages had little or no organic traffic, total traffic, conversions, and links pointing to them. These metric factors are the basic criteria for what constitutes an underperforming page.

The results after removing this blog content?

Pruning has provided an increase in organic keywords for Home Science Tools
Rankings went down very slightly for HomeScienceTools.com primary domain initially, then went to spike up quite a bit in the 90 days after pruning (a typical pattern we see) – with a continuous increase.

Clicks and impressions to the store reflected the upward trend in rankings:

There has been a significant upward trend in clicks and impressions since pruning, as show on this graph.

The stats after pruning blog content from the subdomain?

  • Organic sessions to content grew 104%
  • Transactions grew 102%
  • Strategic content revenue grew 64%

What HomeScienceTools.com Had to Say

We followed up to see what this store’s impression of the process was.

According to Brandy Hansen, marketing director at Home Science Tools, doing this audit was part of a general track of continuous audits and improvements to the website.

On the subject of continuous improvement, Hansen also stressed that they were seeing results continue to trend up past these cited numbers. In her own words:

“At Home Science Tools, we continually focus on improvement what needs to be done to take our service, business and offerings, to the next level. This audit was timely, necessary and strategic; it helped us not only appropriately remove underperforming assets but synergistically brought together what we needed in order to escalate our organic growth.”

In other words: this was a crucial part of a larger overall growth framework for improving performance, and it provided tangible and significant results.

A full-on audit of the site’s vast amount of catalog content could yield similar but larger performance improvements.

However, even limiting the scope of pruning to the blog content alone allowed the best content on the site to stand out to Google in terms of quality…and get recognized by the algorithm with better rankings.

Link Equity Distribution

One reason that pruning low performing content works is because of its impact on link equity distribution.

The big idea here is: if a page doesn’t bring you value through total traffic, conversions, or links pointing to it, then it’s dragging down the potential benefits provided by quality pages that do carry their own weight.

In that case, pruning the low performing content can (and should) be seen as a business decision to stop flow of resources (link equity) to a part of the business that doesn’t bring value.

What is Link Equity?

Link equity is a search engine ranking factor predicated on how links distribute value and authority to pages.

When thinking about link equity, I liken it to having a set amount of money in a bank account.

You can distribute a link’s equity any number of ways, but the more pages you distribute equity to, the smaller the amount transferred to each page.

Websites that distribute their link equity over a smaller number of pages tend toward more strength and value per page, and thus a higher quality overall.

Many sites unintentionally dilute their link equity over many low quality pages. A content audit and pruning helps to optimize link equity distribution and improve performance.

How to Identify and Remove Low Performing Pages

While you will be quantitatively evaluating pages according to their metrics and pruning them, there’s more than one way to prune.

Actual removal is generally better for SEO (for crawl budget reasons), but sometimes the content warrants a “noindex” tag.

There are going to be some low performing pages that meet most of the criteria for pruning but provide other value to your business.

For example, tag pages on a blog where categories are also present, because they help with navigating a site:

Inflow homepage

Example of a blog category / tag page on our own website listing published case studies.

In cases like tag pages that provide usability or some other value outside of their SEO and revenue metrics, a “noindex” tag reduces their weight from your site’s SEO while still allowing the page to remain usable outside of the search engine results.

The Strategic Content Audit Process

When we perform a content audit for client sites, part of that larger process is a sub-process specific to auditing strategic content.

The criteria are quite detailed but also systematic and easy to follow. You can get started with this process by downloading our content audit toolkit.

The outline of this process is:

  1. Make a copy of our “Strategic Content Audit Template” Google Sheet.
  2. Export strategic content URLs and their data to Google Sheets
  3. Determine Action and Strategy
    4. Look for Pages to Prune and Consolidate
  4. Look for Pages to Keep As-Is
  5. Look for Pages to Improve
  6. Prune Outdated and Off-Topic Content

Where should you draw the line on what to prune and what to keep?

A good general guideline is to prune pages with little to no organic traffic, little to no conversion data, and little to no links from external websites by removing them entirely.

Pages that don’t match this criteria but have other intrinsic value to your business or customers, such as blog tag pages, should remain on the site because they enhance user experience but cause SEO issues when overdone and indexed.

In these “keep” cases, you can either deindex the page or improve it if it needs to be indexed. While tag pages don’t usually need to remain indexed, the content that should be indexed are FAQ, About, and Author pages, and you can mark those pages for improvement if they aren’t performing well.

Results and Impact on Traffic and Revenue

We perform this strategic content audit process very often for clients.

As mentioned, it’s part of a general site audit where we find adjustments and improvements to make.

For clients who aren’t ready to do a full-on audit, we’ll often recommend to get your feet wet with a strategic content audit and track the results.

What tends to happen is a noticeable improvement from the strategic content audit (as in this case study). That proof helps clients become comfortable with pruning their low-performing catalog content, too, to create similar results.

A site with over 500 pages can benefit greatly from pruning. Generally, a bigger site will see bigger results from this process as the results become magnified by the size of the website.

To show you other cases of amazing results brought on by auditing and deindexing content, look at these case studies for further reference:

Conclusion

Regular marketing audits are essential to running any online business. Auditing content should be a regular audit for online stores, as eCommerce stores often deal with index bloat from too many low quality pages.

Dipping your toe into content auditing by pruning strategic content is a great place to start if you aren’t ready to do a full-on audit of your online store.

We have experience from helping hundreds of online stores perform this and other SEO audits. If you’d like to see how we can help, please contact us about auditing your site today.

Three Major Themes From the 2019 Google Marketing Live Keynote

At Google Marketing Live (GML) last week, the search engine giant made several big product announcements for advertisers during the keynote address. While many have written up the nitty gritty of each new announcement, here we’re going to focus on thre…

At Google Marketing Live (GML) last week, the search engine giant made several big product announcements for advertisers during the keynote address. While many have written up the nitty gritty of each new announcement, here we’re going to focus on three major themes and what they might mean for marketing programs moving forward.

The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Watches and Jewelry

With online fine jewelry sales expected to double between 2014 and 2020, it’s no surprise that more and more people are considering selling… > Read More
The post The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Watches and Jewelry appeared first on Retail Performance Ma…

With online fine jewelry sales expected to double between 2014 and 2020, it’s no surprise that more and more people are considering selling... > Read More

The post The Ultimate Guide To Amazon Watches and Jewelry appeared first on Retail Performance Marketing Blog - CPC Strategy.

2019 Data-Driven Marketing & Advertising Outlook

It’s hardly a secret that marketing executives of all types are using more data. Data is more powerful than ever, driving decision-making and informing strategy. For the third consecutive year, Dun & Bradstreet has partnered with Adweek to gain a deeper understanding of how B2B brands are approaching data-driven marketing. From its impact on ABM […]

The post 2019 Data-Driven Marketing & Advertising Outlook appeared first on Marketing Land.

It’s hardly a secret that marketing executives of all types are using more data. Data is more powerful than ever, driving decision-making and informing strategy.

For the third consecutive year, Dun & Bradstreet has partnered with Adweek to gain a deeper understanding of how B2B brands are approaching data-driven marketing. From its impact on ABM to programmatic, the 2019 Marketing & Advertising Outlook shines a light on today’s biggest challenges. Read this report to find out:

  • How B2B marketers are using technology in their marketing stacks.
  • The most crucial marketing and advertising priorities for 2019.
  • How data is impacting ABM and the state of programmatic advertising.
  • The differences between how B2B brands and agencies use data.

Visit Digital Marketing Depot to download “2019 Data-Driven Marketing & Advertising Outlook from Dun & Bradstreet.”

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