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Search Engine Marketing
Copywriter: Matt Roberts, Group Account Director, YouDirectories

Localised Content by YouDirectories

Every street is local to the people that live there.  Focusing online content on local keywords generates more search results with Google’s algorithm favouring localised sites.  This approach is required on each site that lists your store.  Online directories are effectively duplicates of your own store pages.  But, vary the content and these won’t be seen as duplicate pages, instead search engines will categorise them as ‘additional pages’ (new content).  This means more search results for your brand on page one of a Google search and less of your competitors.  Inserting local keywords into your store page’s title / meta description tags is the first step toward local ranking.

Your localised content should focus on long-tail keywords to delineate your site

Your localised content should focus on long-tail keywords to delineate your site. Long-tail keywords will help the store page rank higher than a generic keyword which will have much more competition. ‘Storage Greenwich’ may describe your service and local area, but ‘Best storage company in Greenwich’ will have less competitor noise and be more likely to reach your sales market. Don’t forget the meta description tag is truncated in search results if too long, so for geographic keywords it is better to insert them as near the beginning of the tag as possible.  

The Itsukushima Shrine (also known as the floating torii gate)

The Itsukushima Shrine (also known as the floating torii gate) is one of the most famous landmarks in Japan (shown above). Localised content that can be displayed on your store pages and your online directory listing pages alike should contain information relevant to the local area.  Detailing nearby local landmarks is perfect for this goal.  But content marketing management is (relatively) easy once you get going / have experience.  For instance, have you considered adding testimonials from local businesses you’ve served?  Suppliers or SME customers are often very willing to provide a testimonial for your store page and that is like gold to Google searching for local content in a search results page.  

Before producing localised content for your store area, identify your target audience

Before producing localised content for your store area, identify your target audience. Ask your store managers to interview customers face-to-face. Those interviews themselves can provide additional local content for that store.  Google’s Keyword Planner is a great tool to measure search volumes for the keywords that were identified out of that customer research.   If you’re lucky enough to have people willing to link back to your store page either via their personal blog or review, make sure you have content that is worth shouting about to give them reason to do so.  Some tool that represents an advantage over your competitors or at least appears new to customers will do that job.  

A tool for localised content could be a virtual tour

Such a tool for localised content could be a virtual tour where blog writers or reviewers can discuss your industry in general and then give an example of how people can now walk around a store to answer their questions without even visiting.  Such a tool is newsworthy and worth writing about, relevant to both the readers and to Google.  

Becoming active in your local town or village will also generate ideas for localised content

Becoming active in your local town or village will also generate ideas for localised content, so you can be authentic in your writing (no one else will have that content and the same keyword search terms that you know your customers will use to find your service, will be ranked higher within that content due to its originality).  

Hosting local events is one such example of being active in your local community

Hosting local events is one such example of being active in your local community.  If your store has a lot of space that will lend itself to the activity nicely.  If the local event is charity related you will also generate natural, original, localised content for your store page.  Attending local events or sponsoring local events are other ways to cultivate your community inclusion.  Now we know we are creating local content to rank better in a search engine.  But don’t forget, the main idea should also be to position your brand in the local community.  For that reason, it is essential to publish strategic content on different media channels.  

Good high-ranking local landing pages help circulate localised content

Social media should be your main channel highlighting your community activity and linking back to your store pages that display it. But good high-ranking local landing pages will add to this and accelerate the results of your hard work providing excellent localised content.  YouDirectories have a strong partnership with a local landing page company to achieve just that for our clients and priced on performance (so the only cost being when customers click through to your store page from the localised landing page or make a call to your store).  

Localised content is good for link building

Local search marketing works best when utilising store page assets such as your own local research and statistics. For example, you have customers, right?  So, you record sales history.  From this you can glean sales patterns, data trends.  You are sitting on your own gold mine of data.  So, analyse this (or give it to an agency to do it for you) and put the resulting statistics on your store page (localised content derives from such data). By doing this you are creating the opportunity for bloggers and local media outlets to reference these statistics and create new backlinks for you naturally.

Good social media marketing can bring you 1,000 new followers a month

As a specialist agency in directory advertising, contact us for more information on building localised content, circulating localised content via online directory networks, connecting to high page authority bloggers for natural link building and for social media marketing that gains 1,000 new followers a month (see our own Twitter).  All of our services are paid by performance with a cost per customer lead or cost per click (i.e. pay-by-results performance marketing). So, you only have to supply an advertising budget when we perform.     Follow the YouDirectories news posts to see the next developments.

Required reference
: YouDirectories News Article, Jul 2017, London, ‘Localised Content’.

Search Engine Marketing
Copywriter: Matt Roberts, Group Account Director, YouDirectories

Recruitment agencies are a good case study to examine for successful keyword use.  When they receive a new job description (and a good recruitment agency will ‘obtain’ one), the first stage is to find suitable candidates.  Important to that is a good keyword search on your firm’s database of registered candidates, on LinkedIn via a Premium membership, job sites or even from social media.  Identify the keywords that describe those skills, qualities or experiences which the client states are required for the job.  The more accurate the keyword search, the less time you spend placing each candidate.  The quicker you place the candidate, the higher the ROI for your agency.  

The keyword search is necessary to find a ‘probable’ match

Once you have your list of candidates, the recruitment consultant must then begin to find a suitable match for the employer. The keyword search is necessary to find a ‘probable’ match, but to find a ‘suitable’ match the recruitment consultant now needs to assess the personality. The candidate’s personality must fit with the company’s culture. To begin, scan the CV’s for any pattern of regular job changing.  Someone who changes jobs regularly may take longer to place, or simply make your agency look like they do not propose high quality candidates.  

Scan for candidate suitability making notes ready for your call

Scan also for candidates who have gaps in employment history to make a note to ask them the reason why (if they cannot provide a sufficient reason, the recruitment consultant must be prepared to move on the next candidate in the quickest way possible whilst observing minimum politeness). If the candidate’s address or location is known, then the recruitment consultant must also make a decision whether or not the job will be too far for them to travel to (this will increase probability of a quick placement).  This is another instance where keyword searches increase profitability (speed of placing a candidate).  

Listen attentively to your candidates (or clients) for the greatest ROI

When the recruitment consultant is ready to speak to the candidates on their list, they must ‘listen’ to the candidates as they explain their salary expectations (if expectations are not met, it will be very hard to place them).  Ask the candidates questions about why they left their previous employment, try to encourage them to be honest about their past (it will help you know what challenges you may face with the interviewer).  Ask them about their hobbies and interests to assess culture fit with the client’s company.  

When it's time to call the client, a good technique is to write out keywords for each candidate

When the recruitment consultant has an understanding of the candidates they will be proposing, it is time to call the client.  A good technique is to first write out keywords for each candidate that match various key qualities desired and preferred by the client’s job description (JD).  In your call, you can then succinctly say the candidate name, a short bio and your keywords.  For instance, “I have a great candidate, John Smith, he has a half hour commute to your offices, 3 years’ experience.  [and now the keywords] He is analytical, has good social skills, enjoys project planning and looking for flexible working”.  The keywords will form the ‘desire’ part of the AIDA marketing model.  

When your candidates fail to get out of bed on time, it is not just their future they’re blowing but also your agency fee

The recruitment consultant then arranges the interviews, preps the candidates, reminds the candidates (remember, when they fail to get out of bed on time, it is not just their future they’re blowing but also your agency fee) and follows up after interview.  This dedication is typical in any agency and focusing on the client’s goals is just the same in directory advertising.  Post-interview, the recruitment consultant makes their after-interview phone call where they could be dealing with a dejected interviewee or an elated one.  Both situations will make it difficult to glean information.  So, have a list of questions that will ensure you get what you need for your call to the client later.  

For every negative answer the candidate provides, have a positive keyword to match it, ready to volunteer to the client

Depending on how their interview went, for every negative answer the candidate provides, have a positive keyword to match it, ready to volunteer to the client.  For example, if the candidate tells you “The interview went badly, I got caught up in the analysis and forgot how to present” match it with the positive keyword: Analytical: “sometimes he does such a great job in the analysis he forgets his presentation skills under pressure.  Is this something you could work on with him in the role?”  

YouDirectories Logo Registered Trademark

Keywords clearly are vital to quick placement of the right candidates with a client’s role.  Quick placement is key to increased ROI and profitability.  Good directory advertising focuses on keywords in the same way as recruitment.  Many brands (and their agencies) focus on the same description for each store, when in reality each store has different content to contribute and different keywords that will help it display in the first results page.   The more accurate the results (in either candidates or a store wishing to be found by customers on Google), the more profit you will make in the year.   Follow the YouDirectories news posts to see the next developments.

  Glossary: JD – Job Description ROI – Return on Investment A.I.D.A. – Awareness; Interest; Desire; Action   Required reference: YouDirectories News Article, May 2018, London, Keyword Recruitment.

Search Engine Marketing
Copywriter: Matt Roberts, Group Account Director, YouDirectories
YouDirectories-The-Secret-to-a-Marketing-Budget If your brand’s website has less than 1m unique monthly visitors then this article is for you. If you have more than that, the chances are you are either knowingly or unknowingly already allocating the right percentage of your budget to these key marketing areas.   SEO 15 percent If you are yet to utilise video, mobile and retargeting, you should allocate approximately 30 percent of your budget to SEO. With these other advertising channels, you would see your SEO allocation reduced to 15 percent.   YouDirectories-The-Secret-to-a-Marketing-Budget-2 Search Engine Optimization takes time and should not be seen as a quick solution to turn around an ailing product or service. However it remains the standard of gathering organic search traffic, and it should be a central element of any online marketing budget. SEO is necessary for you to build organic traffic and you grow it over time.   As each cycle passes, you should reassess your progress and divert budget away to the other areas until your 30 percent comes down to approximately 15 percent.   Ensure your site has “SEO-friendly” design; research your keywords carefully by analysing your competitors and ensure they are properly used within your site. With this in place, allocate a monthly budget to spend on SEO activities such as link building and producing original content (‘content is king’).     SEM 40 percent The largest part of your online marketing budget should go to SEM. If SEO is pull marketing (attracting customers to your site), search engine marketing is push marketing. Directing customers to your site; to call your store; or to visit your store, is the single biggest thing you can do to quickly boost sales and show an ROI on your marketing budget. This will give your superiors confidence to leave you alone in future and not scrutinise your work so closely.   SEM is the process of getting your content (store phone numbers, address and reason to call/visit) across the internet in as many places as possible. More importantly to where people often visit. Generally, the higher the visitor numbers, the more it will cost to advertise. There are two main ways to use your SEM budget. PPC advertising and business directory advertising.   YouDirectories-The-Secret-to-a-Marketing-Budget-3   You will have begun researching keywords for your SEO and spent some budget to uncover their value. With PPC and directory advertising, you will also benefit from modifying your advert copy frequently in order to determine which ones generate good CTR. To establish your keyword strategy, you should first evaluate your competitors’ keyword strategy.   Remember, if your PPC ads aren’t performing so well, it might mean that while your adverts work well on Google, your potential customers aren’t connecting with them. Therefore you need to keep an eye on the CTR rate and adapt your creative, targeting and landing pages until you find the optimum combination. In highly competitive markets, keywords can be very expensive, so you shouldn’t spend a lot on PPC before you have mastered your perfect conversion funnel.   YouDirectories-Local-Search-Survey-2 There are many business directories. Find out the best ones (speak to specialist agencies like YouDirectories) and allocate a budget to them. for example looks to be a good site, it is often found in website analysis sites as a referral site (directing traffic to a company site). However it only has 14,000 views a month. though has nearly 10,000,000 views a month. Just as for PPC, you should research your competitors on each directory. If they are advertising there, then you should be. If they are not, it may be that they have yet to find it and you could gain market share and competitive advantage by advertising there. Of course it might be, that particular directory doesn’t generate enough traffic for your business sector and your competitors have already tried it and left. Business directory marketing and PPC advertising work best with advice from specialists.     YouDirectories-The-Secret-to-a-Marketing-Budget-5 SMM 15 percent The SEO content you create (news articles etc.) then has to reach as many good quality readers as possible. This is where good social media marketing comes in.   Most advertising campaigns start with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, where the advertising is established and proven. If your business sells products, it will benefit from being active on Pinterest and Instagram.   What to aim for? Look at others in your sector and work out (or ask an agency) what makes users engage with the posts? Most directory agencies for example have 1 favourite or 1 retweet if they’re lucky. Below a typical tweet from YouDirectories has over 20 retweets, 37 favourites, nearly 80 engagements and is seen by 1,800+ people. Remember, each time a user retweets your message, your brand is reaching all of their followers too. YouDirectories-The-Secret-to-a-Marketing-Budget-6   Retargeting 10 percent The majority of sites have very low conversion rates. Retargeting is how you improve conversion rates. Of course you require the visitors to find your site first so retargeting comes into play after you’ve built up your traffic. You will need approximately 15,000 monthly visitors until you can sustain a retargeting campaign. Create an excel document, monitor the monthly visitor numbers and place a marker to remind you to begin retargeting marketing activity at 10,000.   Display Ads 5 percent Display advertising is declining hence our 5 percent suggestion. How does it work on a smartphone mobile? Exactly, it doesn’t. With increasing web browsing on a smartphone, display adverts are being largely ignored by consumers. However some display ads will be necessary to match your competitor’s reach.   Email marketing 15 percent Email is often viewed as an old method of advertising, but it is still an effective low cost opportunity to reach customers. Beware the frequency parameters (too frequent emails will increase the unsubscribe rates dramatically) and change the content to maintain engagement (uninteresting content or repetitive content will increase the unsubscribe rates also).   Remember, consumers access email on mobile devices as well as traditional desktops. This makes email DM a necessary addition to your online advert strategy. If you want to manage it yourself, try MailChimp as an effective delivery tool.   There are many email DM templates you should create. It doesn’t have to be cold-calling email DM. You could send a shopping cart abandonment email with tailored messaging to bring them back perhaps mention a limited time offer, or a Cross Sell email. Of course to deliver the right email recommendation to the right user at the optimum time is essential in order to make this channel work for you. For that you’re best to utilise an advertising agency’s expertise and learn from a few campaigns.   Follow the YouDirectories news posts to see the next developments.   Glossary: SEO – Search engine optimisation SEM – search engine marketing PPC – Pay per click CTR – Click to conversion rate / Click through rate SMM – Social media marketing DM – Direct mail   Required reference: YouDirectories News Article, Sept 2015, London, ‘The budget secret’.

Search Engine Marketing
 Copywriter: Lee Bratton, Account Manager, YouDirectories
YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp   On March 12, 2014, Yahoo! announced that it had partnered with Yelp to bring local review data into its search experience for both mobile and desktop. Traditional Yelp information, such as ratings, reviews and user photos became interlinked with and fed to Yahoo!   YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-1 Following that US roll out, Yahoo! have now completed the same for the UK and some European countries. In the UK, like the US, this partnership is transparent with results clearly displayed as provided by Yelp. However due to the directory market differing greatly by country, in France where Pages Jaunes is such a dominant directory, Yelp provide the data feed to Pages Jaunes who in turn provide it to Yahoo! – See our earlier article from February 2013.  

YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-2          YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-3

  Yahoo! is no longer a company known for its search products following the outsourcing of its search technology to Microsoft. Yahoo! has since tried to slow or escape from under its search deal with Microsoft, given that the partnership has failed to perform up to financial expectations. However it does want search to be a focus for its business and with local search comes local reviews.   YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-Feedback   Yahoo! Local isn’t the only search engine to have abandoned their own local reviews and switch to a data feed from Yelp. Bing partnered with Yelp in 2012 and now include not only reviews, but ratings, images and other data. This leaves Google as the one remaining search engine giant yet to abandon their own Google+ reviews in favour of the trusted data status of Yelp’s own review system.   YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-Mayer Despite the competitive challenges, Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer recently declared that the company is “long in search,” stressing, “We do intend to continue to invest in the search user experience, and in really making sure that Yahoo! users on the network ultimately really get a tremendous experience.”   In a recent blog post, Anand Chandrasekaran the then senior director at Yahoo! was quoted as saying “Now when you use Yahoo! Search to look up a local business in the U.S. on your smartphone, tablet, or PC, you’ll see user reviews, business information, and star ratings from Yelp. We’ve also added a new photo viewing experience to show high-quality photos from Yelp, other partners, and the businesses themselves.” YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-Mobile   However, YouDirectories have identified that the partnership is not totally a good thing for business due to the nature of review management. Many business owners have built a good Yahoo! Local profile with lots of really good reviews over many years. The Yelp-Yahoo! partnership seems good for them because Yelp is very popular for leaving business reviews and it would certainly help brands to have reviews from a well-known established review site. But what many don’t realise is that years of accumulated Yahoo! Local reviews can be replaced in favour of a single Yelp review. The current process is that as soon as a business gains its first Yelp review, Yahoo! removes all the old Yahoo! Local reviews, rather than archiving them. The picture of the brand created by years of reviews just disappears overnight… YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-Elephant   When users go and look at a business to see the reviews, it’s pretty common for users to bypass those businesses that only have a single review, in favour of those businesses that have a longer history of reviews. This means that if your brand is on Yahoo! with lots of reviews and you don’t have presence on Yelp with lots of reviews, then you risk losing them to be replaced by a single Yelp review that someone decides to leave on the Yelp site. The good news for Yelp is this now makes directory listing management on the Yelp country sites more important than ever. Very simply, if you manage your Yelp listings you’ll remove the user-generated listings of your business and create a platform for future reviews which will filter into both Bing and Yahoo! YouDirectories-Yahoo!-partners-with-Yelp-Socialmedia   Follow the YouDirectories news posts to see the next developments.   Required reference:

YouDirectories News Article, Aug 2015, London, ‘Yahoo! Yelp partners’.