I've decided to change up the format of this and subsequent blog posts. As I intend this to be a resource for myself to help me review I'm going to start posting the links I find from my class (and my own investigation) on the topics we are studying. I'll also continue to talk about my reflections.
So we talked about landing pages. First a few links:
Understanding Landing Page Experience
Basic Strategies for Optimizing Websites and Landing Pages
Create Better Websites: Introducing Content Experiments
Content Experiments the Benefits
So the first key take away for landing pages is to AVOID POPUPS. No seriously stop using them! I was happy to find that piece of advice from google that they specifically prohibit landing pages with popups for the advertising policy as I hate them yet I had read (and even blogged) about how people see increases in sales with them. I'm glad google is starting to penalize people for using them.
The reality is the old way of doing landing pages was to try and keyword spam the page to make it so it was more relevant to google's SEO and advertising algorithms. Now a days they want you to have content that just flows naturally (so talking about related concepts, synonyms, etc). If you keyword spam google will penalize and possibly eject you from adwords and their SEO rankings.
I also really liked on the basic strategies link for the tips I had there. The biggest tip for me on my landing pages was to drive a single call to action. I thought I was leaving money on the table if I didn't try to throw every possible email signup, product purchase, video watch, etc at people to give them every possible option. However, focusing on a single thing I want people to do actually increased my conversion rate as well as the time people spend on my pages. Which was fascinating.
The other element, which I have tried but I am going to when I get a bit more time is the content experiments. I already do a bit of A/B testing by sending people for the same ad to different landing pages, but with content experiments I can have the SAME landing page and present different tests to see which ones perform better. I'm really interested in this and I just need to devote more time to it.
Next up SEO.
So here are some links to help remind me about topics of SEO:
What is Search Engine Optimization/SEO
Perfecting Keyword Targeting & On-Page Optimization
Backlinks Checker Tool — Backlink Watch - Check to see how many backlinks (external links) to your site you have.
So I actually worked for an SEO company when I first got back from my LDS mission and it was awful because we went through creating these spam landing pages to generate links back to our website. Our content writers would create tons of articles and post them out on the internet in all kinds of random obscure places in order to drive up search traffic for our clients. The days of that working are no longer. Now Google specifically looks at how you are targeting your keywords and the reputation of the links coming back to you. Highly reputable sites linking to you? Higher ranking. Continuously fresh content? Higher Ranking. Spamming articles and websites that all link to each other with no external links? Likely to be banned from google search.
Overall I recognized I need on my business to have better schema organization of my site, target a few specific keywords I've identified from my best performing adwords campaigns and write a lot more content, frequently.