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SEO Guide – Branding

Why a Brand is Crucial for Good SEO

Many marketers will make the mistake of viewing their SEO and their broader marketing as being separate. The assumption is that marketing entails things like social media marketing and advertising, whereas SEO involves adding lots of content to your website and using keywords. The two are entirely different and there is no crossover… right?

Some site owners will even go as far as to eschew marketing altogether and instead focus on only SEO as a tool to boost the status of their website.

But marketing and SEO are not separate. In fact, they go hand-in-hand and each supports the other. If you’re going to come up with an effective SEO strategy, then it needs to take into account an effective marketing campaign. And this includes things like social media marketing, web design and branding…

Why Brand Matters

So how does creating a great logo, web design and site name help you with SEO specifically?

Firstly, creating a brand for your site is something that Google highly recommends. Real companies are not called ‘How-To-Get-Big-Biceps.Com’, they are called ‘CrushingMuscle.com’. Brands help to give a business – and a website by extension – a persona and an identity. Think about the sites that are most successful on Google and you’ll likely find that they all use a brand rather than just a keyword as their site name!

Another reason that brands matter to Google is that brands matter to users. If your site has a great logo, a smart web design that matches the logo and a clear ‘mission statement’, then you’ll find that your visitors find it much easier to get behind your message and to become fans of your content.

That in turn means that they’re likely to spend long on your site, reducing your bounce rates. It means they will be more likely to share your links too. These are both things that Google will look at and view as a sign of a high quality website.

Another important reason to build a strong brand and spend time creating a site with high production values, is that it will send the right message to other site owners. You know, the sites that you want to work with when building links? Try and get a guest post from a top blog if your site looks like spam and see how it works out for you…

How to Design a Great Brand

So how do you create a great brand?

A great brand doesn’t start with a logo but rather with a mission. It starts by knowing exactly what it is that you want to deliver to your users and exactly what sets you apart from the rest. Your logo is then an expression of that and a label that will tell people what to expect when they come across your site.

It should also be well designed though and that means that it needs to be an AI (Adobe Illustrator) file and that it needs to be unique, identifiable and not overly complex.


SEO Guide – Future of SEO

The Surprising Future of SEO

SEO Guide – If Google’s devastating Panda and Penguin updates taught the internet anything, it’s that content creators can’t rest on their laurels and hope to keep relying on the same SEO techniques forever.

Google is constantly updating, improving and tweaking its algorithms to make its search tool smarter and more effective at matching search terms with the right results. If you don’t adapt and evolve with those changes, then you’ll be left behind!

The best SEO strategies then need to involve an element of prediction and speculation. Creators need to look at trends and clues and use these to predict the future of search and of Google. So where exactly is the industry heading? The answers might surprise you…

… Google is Becoming an AI

The big change is that Google is moving away from simple search to become a much more powerful AI. This is most evident when we look at Google Home and the Assistant packaged with Google Pixel phones. Google wants users to be able to talk to it and it wants to provide them with answers without them having to open up a web page and search through the content. More and more people will be relying on voice search and this fundamentally changes the game: we use voice very differently from the way we type our searches!

When typing, most of us will tend to write the precise search term we’re looking for. For example, you might search:

… “Length of a piece of string”

When asking Google by voice however, you’ll be much more likely to use a conversational tone and that means you’ll be more likely to ask:

… “How long is a piece of string?”

How This Changes SEO

So, what does this have to do with SEO?

Your initial impulse might be to assume that you now need to use search terms that sound more like questions. But that would result in some pretty awkward-sounding content. Instead then, Google is aiming to deliver on this ambition by changing the way it matches content. Instead of looking for precise matches in search terms and content, it is now able to understand the actual question and the context and use this to provide a much more relevant result (most of the time).

This is where LSI – Latent Semantic Indexing – becomes so important. LSI is the use of synonyms and related language in conjunction with classic key phrases. And when used properly, this can give Google much more context while also avoiding keyword-stuffing practices.

Another thing that search optimization now needs to take into account, is the role of structured data. This is content that uses markups to tell AIs like Google what particularly content is about. This is what lets Google show recipes, times, ratings and other key information right at the top of the search through ‘Google Quick Results’ and the knowledge graph.

Don’t try to second-guess Google but keep this direction in mind when designing your own SEO strategies. Google is more than a search engine – it is an AI.


SEO Guide – The Correct Way

The Correct Way to Think About SEO

The quickest and most effective way to start improving your success with SEO, is to change the way that you’re thinking about it. This ultimately comes down to a ‘cognitive shift’, which will improve the way that you approach your on and off-page changes and simultaneously give you a big boost in performance.

By focussing on the underlying philosophy of your SEO, rather than individual principles, you will be able to keep your strategies changing and adapting to those that Google introduces.

So, what does this entail? Where have you been going wrong with your SEO? And what do you need to change about your approach to start seeing positive improvements for the long term?

Stop Trying to Trick Google!

The first and most important thing to change about your approach is to stop looking at SEO as a bid to ‘trick’ Google as many people do.

It’s this mentality that causes people to spend a lot of time and effort spamming the web to build links, to steal content and ‘spin’ it in order to change it sufficiently for Google to view it as unique, to ‘keyword stuff’ and more. It’s about working out Google’s algorithm and then employing that knowledge in order to try and get your content to jump straight to the top of the SERPs… right?


Google, as you might imagine, does not like being gamed. It did not design its algorithms in order to create a convenient way for site owners to get to the top of their search terms and it doesn’t want to see people using spam as a way to thrive online.

As such, the more you take part in these kinds of practices, the closer you will come to getting penalized by Google and completely removed from the index!

Even if you can find a ‘private blog network’ and get to the top of Google in short term, in the long term Google is bound to evolve and to find ways to remove ‘cheaters’.


So what do you do instead? Simple: you focus on delivering amazing quality content for you visitors and partnering with other high quality sites. You make yourself a trusted brand and you help to properly answer the questions that Google’s users want answered.

Google’s job is to make sure that when someone searches for a particular subject, they are provided with a useful, relevant and well-written response. Google needs to keep doing that in order to keep one step ahead of Bing and Yahoo!.

By creating high quality content, you are aligning your goals with Google. By showing Google that you work with trusted brands, you are suggesting that your content is trustworthy and high quality.

And when you do that, Google will want to try and pair your site to the right search terms. Make it so that visitors will be glad they found your site and Google will be glad to show it to them!

SEO is simply: doing anything that will help you to rank higher in Google. And right now, that just means creating great quality content and links

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