What To Expect From An SEO Report

Whenever you hire an SEO agency, you should expect a monthly report. But reports can differ significantly between agencies. Regardless of what it looks like, however, the report should give you a clear idea of the benefits their work is having on your business.

Unfortunately, this often isn’t the case. The vast majority of SEO reports contain too little detail or overload clients with technical info. This can be incredibly misleading for a lot of business owners. It can also lead business owners to continue working with an agency even though they aren’t benefiting your business.

By knowing what to expect from an SEO report, you’ll be able to identify a trustworthy SEO service that can help you rank. Let’s get started by looking at what makes up a good SEO report.


The Basics of an SEO Report

At its most basic. An SEO report must provide the need-to-know data about a business’ SEO. This includes:

  • Traffic
  • Conversions
  • Rankings

The whole purpose of SEO is to improve your visibility in Google, increase traffic and get you more customers. The three factors above account for all of that.


What Else Should You Look For in an SEO Report

But that’s not all an SEO report should contain. They way it is presented also counts. It must be easy to read, contain relevant information and make the ROI you are getting obvious.


1. SEO Metrics

SEO metrics are a great way to present SEO efforts and results in a way that make it easy for business owners to understand what is going on. They can quickly sum up how successful SEO efforts have been.

These shouldn’t just be any old metrics, however. The metrics that you are presented with should align with your SEO objectives. Not every SEO campaign is the same but here are some relevant SEO metrics that you could expect to see:

  • Conversion rates that show how much of your traffic is converting
  • Traffic broken down per page and per traffic source
  • Problems that are stopping you from ranking better such as site speed or page errors.



Metrics should be easy to understand on the face of it. But the SEO company should also explain what these graphs and stats are showing, too. That way the report is as easy to digest as possible and everyone can be happy that it is understood.

Some agencies will use technical jargon in their reports that can confuse business owners. This should be avoided at all costs. The easier their comments are to understand, the more open the SEO agency will be and the chances are they will perform better, too.


3. Next Steps

Your SEO report should be part of an ongoing engagement that you have with a company. That means, presumably, that they will be doing more work next month. The final thing that your SEO report should contain, therefore, is the next steps that the company is going to take and what they hope to achieve from doing that.

If you’re not happy with your current SEO report, try our services instead. Get in touch today for a free consultation.

What Website Owners Need To Know About Accessibility

The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law over 30 years ago. But it wasn’t until recently that its impact on website owners has emerged. Back in 2017, law firm Seyfarth Shaw reported an increase of 16 percent in lawsuits related to the disabilities act. Most of these were due to non-compliant websites.

ADA and Website Accessibility

The Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA is designed to protect against discimination. It was created before the web and has a very wide scope that covers:

  • Private and public spaces
  • State and local government institutions
  • Employment opportunities
  • Transportation and telecommunications
  • Building codes


A quick background on website accessibility

Of course, the original ADA did not account for website accessibility. There was no need because there were no websites. This began to change in 2003 when the Department of Justice published the first guidelines aimed at state and local governments to make their websites as accessible as possible for those with disabilities.

A revised version of Section 508 under Title II of ADA took effect in 2018. This came to be known as the Section 508 Refresh and it included now well-known standards based on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines outline a list of requirements that websites need to conform by in order to be accessible. This is a global initiative and was published by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) under the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

Despite there being detailed guidelines, website owners can still be vulnerable to ADA lawsuits.


The Problem with ADA and Website Accessibility

You may think that any lawsuits are the result of a lack of effort or awareness by website owners. But that’s not the case.

The section 508 Refresh only applies to state and local governments. This makes compliance confusing to website owners and app creators. What they need to be aware of is Title III of the ADA, rather than the more vague Title II.

Title III mandates that businesses which are open to the public remove “access barriers” that may prevent disabled individuals from accessing goods and services. In some cases, this has been argues that any website that sells goods or services should fall under this ruling, even if they are online only and have no physical presence. This is making website owners more vulnerable to ADA.


How Can I Protect Myself Against ADA Lawsuits?

The DOJ said back in 2018 that they intended to update Title III of the ADA to include outlines for website accessibility for businesses. But they have yet to make these changes. Until then, the safest thing to do is to use the same WCAG guidelines provided for state and local governments.

You could also look at the trend of ADA lawsuits in your state. California and New York, for instance, provide monetary compensation to aggrieved parties and have the highest rates of lawsuits.

For more information on website accessibility, get in touch with our website experts for a free consultation.

Everything You Need To Know About Google’s June 2019 Core Update

On June 3, 2019, Google released the June 2019 core update. The search giant claims that it was not a major algorithm update, but many SEO experts and website owners believe otherwise. We are still seeing massive fluctuations in rankings as updates continue to be rolled out.

If you keep an eye on search engine results, you’ll know that this isn’t the first time something like this has happened this year. In March, SEOs noticed significant changes to the way domains ranked and predicted an algo update before Google even announced it. Again, Google said that the March update was not a full-on algorithm update.

There’s something very familiar about this June update. So you remain in the know, we have rounded up the opinions of leading SEO experts. Here’s what they have to say.


Moz: Health sites win; no changes in SERP features

Moz’s Pete Meyers tweeted early about the change. Meyers noted that health websites such a Healthline, Dr. Axe and Verywell Health had big gains.

He also noted that he couldn’t find any change in SERP features such as the Health Panel. This means that health-focused websites that gained or lost ranking visibility can expect their pages to stay in the Health Panel…for now.


Sistrix: More domains gain and lose than before

SISTRIX were quick to use their Visibility Index Tool to take a UK-focused approach to the June update. Comparing data between June and May, they found that websites typically gained 19-54 percent visibility or lost 17-50 percent visibility. Some of the winners were the Mirror Online, HuffPost and even Tumblr.

Crucially, Sistrix noticed a small but very important detail. The June update seems to have impacted a wider range of websites than the March update, which just affected “Your Money or Your Life” domains such as health websites. It looks like the June update has affected eCommerce stores, news sites and websites in a string of other industries.


SearchMetrics: New update reverts previous changes

Marcus Tober, Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of SearchMetrics, believes that a lot of the change seen in June may have reverted some of the changes of the March update. He suspects that the wide-reaching blanket fall of health websites in March has been tweaked so that respected brands (WebMD, Dr. Axe, etc.) have regained visibility.


RankRanger: Your Money or Your Life still affected in June

Looking at the top 10 search results across the US, RankRanger took a niche-based approach to research. The company found that fluctuations typically fell within a range that can be considered normal. But they noticed much larger shifts in rankings for three particular niches: gambling, health and finance.

There you go, SEO experts have given their views on the June 2019 update. Hopefully it hasn’t hit your website too hard. If it has, however, our SEO experts are here to help. Get in touch today for a free consultation to see how we can help restore and increase your rankings.

Everything Local Stores Need To Know About Google Local Inventory Ads

There’s no denying that shopping in physical stores is losing its charm. After all, what’s the point in visiting a store when you can buy online in a couple of clicks and have it delivered to your home. A recent study by Kibo found that 80 percent of consumers won’t even visit a store if thei website doesn’t have an inventory of their products.

The rise of eCommerce has been nothing less than a nightmare for traditional mom and pop retailers. It looks like there’s no way to compete with the convenience of online shopping.

But Google has a solution that might help: Local Inventory Ads.


What are Google Local Inventory Ads?

Local Inventory Ads let small, local businesses display their products at the very top of Google to searchers who are looking for a particular product. If those users click on the ad, they are directed to a local storefront.

The local storefront is a Google-hosted page that acts as an online version of a brick and mortar store. Buyers can see the product, how many you have in store, how much it is and where exactly your store is. They can even be directed to it using Google Maps.


What are the Benefits of Local Inventory Ads?

There are several big benefits to small local stores using Local Inventory Ads.


1. Take your physical store online

This is a great way to attract searchers when you don’t have a website or any kind of online store. Best of all, the people searching are actually looking to buy this item quickly and are willing to visit a local store to do so.


2. Showcase your products

It can be hard to get your products to show on the front page of Google when you are a small physical store. Even is you use Google Shopping it can mean paying huge ad costs. But that’s not the case with Local Inventory Ads. Because the ads are specific to a particular area, the costs aren’t as high and there isn’t as much competition.

It’s also a great way to build trust in your store and show that you have a great selection of products. If people go out to visit a store they want to know they have the products that they need. At the same time, even if they don’t visit your store then and there, you’ll be in their mind the next time they want a similar product.


3. Stand out against competition

The chances are that most of your competitors aren’t using Google Local Inventory Ads just yet. So this is a great opportunity to set yourself apart and win all of the local traffic in your area.


How To Set Up A Local Storefront on Google?

Local Inventory Ads are only available to stores in the US, UK, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Norway, and Switzerland.

There are also several criteria that you must meet to qualify.

  • Owns a physical store which is open to the public
  • Sells physical products which shoppers can buy without having to pay for anything else (i.e. membership)
  • Physical store must be located in a country where ads will be targeted to
  • Store owner must take precautionary and active measures to secure their customers’ Personally Identifiable Information (PII)

If that’s you then you’re good to go! Start setting up Local Inventory Ads today!

Everything Local Businesses Need To Know About Bing

Google may be the top dog in the world of search, but that doesn’t mean local businesses should ignore Bing completely. In fact, when optimized properly Bing can be incredibly useful to businesses everywhere.

In this article, we’ll explain why Bing is a really powerful search engine, how it can help your local business and how you can optimize your site for Bing.


Why Bing is secretly great

Bing is the third largest search engine in the world, and the second most popular in many people’s eyes. In 2018, Bing was able to account for 4.58 percent of global searches. That may not seem like a lot at first glance but it accounts for billions of queries.

What you may not know is that Yahoo!, the second largest search engine in the world, is actually powered by Bing. So by optimizing for Bing you are also optimizing for Yahoo! at the same time and killing two birds with one stone.


Grow your reach with Bing

It’s only natural that most businesses focus the majority of their search efforts on Google. It is by far the largest search engine in the world and the first place that most people turn go to find the answers they are looking for.

But Bing and Yahoo! shouldn’t be ignored. They are more popular in certain areas of the world (like Asia) but they can also help you drive traffic to your website no matter where in the world you are.


How to Optimize Your Website for Bing

Bing uses a different algorithm than Google. So by optimizing for Google you are not necessarily optimizing for Bing at the same time. They do share certain similarities, however. Here’s what you need to do to optimize for Bing.


Step 1: Register your business

You’ll first need to claim your business in Bing. This will allow Bing to properly show your local business in local search results.

Doing so will ensure that you have all your bases covered when it comes to local search. Not everyone uses Google, after all.

All you have to do is go to Bing Places for Business and create or claim your business’ listing. As the two search engines are connected, you will automatically get listed on Yahoo! when you claim your Bing Places account.


Step 2: Have your website indexed

Once you have registered your local business on Bing Places ,you’ll need to make sure that your website is indexed in Bing. You can create a Bing account to do so or you can log in through your Outlook or Microsoft account.

Once logged in, head over to the Big Website Submission page and fill in the form. You’ll then be able to submit your XML sitemap for Bing to crawl.


Step 3: Perform SEO

You’ll need to do SEO for Bing, but a lot of this will be the same as it is for Google. Here’s what you should be doing to optimize for Bing:

  • Do your keyword research onBing
  • Tag and categorize your content
  • Avoid any blackhat practices. Bing is as good as Google at stopping them.

If you need help getting started on Bing, reach out to our experts for a free consultation.

E-A-T And Why Website Owners Should Care

E-A-T has nothing to do with food. It’s all about how Google determines the level of quality of your website. The better your E-A-T, the more appetizing your website will be in the eyes’ of Google.

In this article, we’ll explain what E-A-T means and why it matters if you’re a website owner.


What is E-A-T?

The E-A-T acronym stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness. These three factors are used by Google to determine the level of quality of your page.

Google’s algorithm is getting more and more complex. It doesn’t just look at the content of your page to determine where you rank. It doesn’t even just look at the backlinks pointing to it. E-A-T is just one more method that Google uses to get an idea of how good your website really is.

Now let’s look at what each of these factors are in turn.


1. E for Expertise

Google wants to serve up experts in the field above everyone else. So the first thing it looks for is the level of expertise you have.

Let’s look at the health niche as an example. If a website that offers health advice wants to have a high level of expertise, their content should be written by a medical professional and well referenced.

Of course, what counts as high expertise content will vary depend on the niche you are operating in. Levels of expertise will vary between niches, so you don’t always have to have professional writers to have a high level of expertise.


2. A for Authoritativeness

As well as having expertise, you also want to be seen as an authority in your niche. Google uses several factors to measure the authority of your website:

  • Customer reviews and ratings
  • Backlinks (the kinds of websites linking back to you)
  • Mentions and citations by other authors
  • Sites where you appear in (such as in guest posting)

To put it simply, you want your content to be recognized by everyone in your niche as some of the best around.


3. T for Trustworthiness

Google also only wants to display trustworthy websites in their rankings. Or at least to rank trustworthy websites above untrustworthy sites.

Part of this is writing high quality content, but there’s also a technical aspect to it as well. Your website should be secured with https using an SSL certificate. If you are an ecommerce store owner you’ll also need to make sure you take further precautionary steps to protect customer security.


Why E-A-T Should Matter to You

Google has said that they have officially recognized E-A-T as part of their Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines. That means it has a direct impact on how your site ranks. Google wants to provide the best and most relevant results and E-A-T helps it do this.

If you want help understanding your E-A-T score or want help improving it, our team of SEO experts can help. Get in touch today for a free consultation.

How Much Does Google Update Its Algorithm?

Google has been pretty volatile of late. Within a matter of months they have rolled out two core updates: one in March and one in June. More is coming. In July, Google will be ranking websites using their mobile site first.

This got us thinking, just how much does Google change its algorithm. So in this post, we’ll look  at some fun Google facts, how often Google updates the algorithm and why these updates are important.


Fun Facts On Google Updates

Two updates in a few months is actually nothinng compared to the number of updates Google makes every year. Looking at reports, Google makes thousands of update every year.

Take 2018, for instance. Google reported 3,234 updates to their search engine. Compare that to 2009, where Google’s Matt Cutts said the search giant made between 350 and 400 updates. It’s clear to see that the number of tweaks Google is making is rapidly increasing.

Below is a timeline of confirmed Google’s recent updates:

  • 2009. Cutts released a video stating that Google made 350 to 450 updates to their search algorithm.
  • 2010. Eric Shmidt, then Executive Chairman of Google, testified before the Congress that they made 516 algorithm changes that year.
  • 2012. In the archived page from “How Search Works,” Google published an infographic where it states that 665 launches were approved.
  • 2013. Amit Singhal, Google’s former Senior Vice President, announced in a Google+ post the 890 improvements were made to Search.
  • 2016. Google said they launched 1,653 improvements in a now-defunct page from “How Search Works”.
  • 2017. During an internal Google meeting, it was discussed they released 2,453 Google updates, according to CNBC.
  • 2018. In their latest update via “How Search Works,” Google said they performed 3,234 search improvements.


Does Google Update Its Algorithm Every Day?

There are rumors that Google updates its algorithm every single day. In fact, some say that Google updates it multiple times per day. In 2009, Matt Cutts also said that they hold weekly meetings to discuss up to a dozen updates. But not all of these get made.

The thing is that most of these changes go unnoticed, even by the most observant of SEOs. That’s because these tweaks barely change the results pages, that’s how small they are.

The truth is that nobody really knows how often Google updates its SEO algorith. Experts are constantly trying to work out a daily or weekly average but the real rate that Google changes its algorithm can change every day.


Why are Google updates important?

With so many updates happening you can be forgiven for wondering why you should bother trying to keep up with them all. But doing so is very important, at least for the major changes. Big Google updates can completely revamp the way that the search engine works and looks.

This can have a big impact on your business and may require you to make changes in order to keep ranking well or profit from the changes. So even if you aren’t your SEO agency should be. Get in touch to find out how we can improve your rankings and keep track of any search changes.

Ways to Improve Your Page Speed

Page speed is becoming a bigger and bigger factor in SEO. Google is putting much more relevance on it because people simply don’t want to stay on a slow site. In fact, Google has said that mobile pages that take longer than 3 seconds to load lose over half their visitors.

If they leave your website, they’re going to go straight to your competitors. That makes page speed critical to the overall health of your website. Here’s how you can improve it.


How to Improve Page Speed on the Front-end

The front-end of your website is the part that everyone sees. It chiefly contains the design and uses HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Improving page speed here chiefly involves making everything load quicker.


1. Optimize fonts and images

Fonts and images can make your site look great. But they can really slow it down, too, if they aren’t implemented properly.

Don’t go mad with fonts. Try and restrict your choice to ones that can be embedded as an inline SVG. This means they will load as fast as possible. An even better method would be to use Google Web Fonts which are usually already saved on servers and can be loaded instantly.

Images should be as small and as compressed as possible. The bigger the image, the longer it takes to load so make sure to minify them as much as possible without losing quality.


2. Minify your JavaScript and CSS

As well as shrinking your images, you may also want to shrink your code. This isn’t a good idea unless you are a web developer and you know what you’re doing. But by minifying your CSS and JavaScript you can significantly decrease load times.


3. Choose a content delivery network

Content delivery networks store a version of your site on worldwide servers in the form of a cache. In doing so, they serve up this version of your website much faster than it would take to load the page from scratch meaning that everyone across the world can load your site quickly


How to Improve Your Page Speed On The Back-end

The back-end of your website is much more technical than the front-end and so are the ways in which to increase site speed.


1. Set up a reverse proxy and HTTP headers

You can use a reverse proxy in the same way that you would use a CDN, to cache pages and serve them up to visitors. The benefit here is that you keep everything in house.

The same can be done for your HTTP headers.


2. Prolong the TTL of your cache

Caches aren’t stored forever. After a certain amount of time they are wiped and need to be renewed. But you can increase the time to live or TTL of your caches so that they last for much longer meaning web pages should load quicker in general.


3. Get a slow queries report

Your database can provide you with a slow queries report which will identify things you need to improve.

For more information on increasing site speed, get in touch with our team today.

New Websites Will Be Indexed Using Google’s Mobile-First Index From July

In June, everyone was talking about the new core update that Google released. But something even more important is coming in July.

Google has been talking about a mobile-first index since 2016. It has been live for almost a year now and now it will be used for all new websites from July 1.


What is mobile-first indexing?

Google ranks websites on a number of factors that include page speed, content, the age of the domain, the security of the site and countless others. This was done by crawling the desktop version of your website. The better your desktop version, the higher you ranked on Google search queries made on a laptop and on a phone.

What mobile-first indexing does is change the focus of Google’s crawls. Rather than only look at a website’s desktop version, Google will now go straight for the mobile version of a website. In cases where a mobile site version isn’t present, Google will revert to the desktop website but it may penalize websites as a result.


What can I expect from Google’s mobile-first index?

What this move will mean to you will depend on how old your website is and what kind of shape it is in.


New site owners

Google has said that all new websites will be indexed using the mobile version of their website as of July 1. This includes all websites created on and after July 1, as well as those created before July 1 that haven’t been indexed yet and are therefore not visible on Google.

The vast majority of new websites should be ready for a mobile-first index already. That’s because most modern websites are built with a responsive design that shows the same content across both mobile and desktop platforms. Any new website owner won’t be notified of this change in Google’s Search Console as it will be the default setting.


Early adopters

If you have already migrated to a mobile-first index, nothing will change for you. You won’t receive any notification from Google and the mobile version of your website will continue to be used for indexing.


Late adopters

If you have an old website and haven’t opted for mobile-first indexing yet, you don’t have anything to worry about…just yet. Google is still giving older websites plenty of time to get ready for mobile indexing.

You shouldn’t wait around, however. Do everything you can to get the mobile version of your website in line with your desktop website. As soon as Google sees that it is ready, you will be notified through the Search Console.


Is the desktop version of my site going to stop being indexed?

Not just yet. Old websites will still have the desktop version of their website indexed if they aren’t ready. New and early adopting websites will also have both looked at but the mobile version will take precedent.


When will I know my site is ready for mobile-first indexing?

You can use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool to see if you’re ready for a mobile-first index. You can also use the URL Inspection Tool in the search console to check which version of your website Google is indexing. If it was crawled by Google Smartphone then Google is using the mobile version of your site.

For more information on mobile-first indexing or to get your website ready, get in touch with our search experts.

A Business Owner’s Guide to TF-IDF

Unless you are an SEO expert, you probably haven’t heard of TF-IDF. You probably wouldn’t be reading this if that wasn’t the case. It can look like an intimidating term, and it becomes even more intimidating when you learn that it has to do with statistical math.

But there’s no need to feel intimidated when you learn about the term, what it means and how it works. That’s why we’re here to help.

Today, we’ll teach you:

  • What TF-IDF is
  • The difference between TF-IDF and keyword density
  • How to calculate TF-IDF using a free tool


What is TF-IDF?

TF-IDF is an acronym for Term Frequency – Inverse Document Frequency. It is a numerical statistic and one way that Google works out what relevance a page has to a particular search term.

That’s because TF-IDF is a numerical statistic that calculates the frequency of a term in a document compared to its frequency in millions of other documents. Let’s take an article on SEO, for example. If SEO is mentioned several times in the article it will probably have a high TF-IDF for SEO. That’s because the frequency of the term “SEO” will be very high in that article compared to the entire internet.

At this point you may be wondering if TF-IDF is the same as keyword density. But it isn’t.


TD-IDF vs Keyword Density

Keyword density is a measure of how frequently a particular term is used in an article. It is measured as a percentage: the higher the percentage, the more that term is used in the document.

TF-IDF is similar but it goes even futher. Rather than measuring the frequency of a term compared to all the words in an article, TF-IDF measures the frequency against all (or some) of the content on the internet.

As Google has become more advanced, it has started to use TF-IDF more than it uses keyword density.


How you can  Calculate TF-IDF

We’ll now look at how to easily calculate TD-IDF without doing complicated math. The first thing to do is to sign up for Ryte. You can pay for the tool but there is a freemium version, too.

  • Step 1. Log in to your free Ryte account and click on ‘Content Success’. You should find it on the left side of your screen.
  • Step 2. Under Content Success, click ‘Go to Analyze’ and input your keyword, the country, and the language you are targeting.
  • Step 3. Click on ‘Start Content Analysis’ and wait for a few seconds until the page displays keyword recommendations and competition.
  • Step 4. Next, click on the ‘Competition’ tab. You should see a list of your keyword recommendations alongside competition.
  • Step 5. To view the TD-IDF, refer to the circles under each competition. Their size and color indicate thea following:
    • Small-sized, pale blue – Low TF-IDF (Low Relevance)
    • Medium-sized, aqua blue – Medium TF-IDF (Medium Relevance)
    • Large-sized, dark blue – High TF-IDF (High Relevance)


The higher the relevance, the tougher it is to beat your competition.

When you hover over the circles, you’ll see the relevancy score of a keyword (that is, its TD-IDF) and number of times it is mentioned in a page.