Our team reads hundreds of articles every week from Search Engine Optimization and Pay-Per-Click Advertising and Web Design and just general news. We strive to stay on top of the current digital trends as well as keeping and eye ahead for what’s to come. This information search is highly important for not only our company but industry in general. Each week we recap the top articles to provide our readers with the main stories they need to be following. If Google released a new algorithm, or an apps blowing up on the market you’ll hear about it here. So if you didn’t get a chance to read your usual feed or are just looking for a way to cut down on read time we have you covered. Come back every Friday for a new collection of our favorites and the most noteworthy pieces from the digital news sphere.

What we are Reading for May 26th

Why Link Building for eCommerce Matters

Creating a sustainable SEO strategy that not only picks up steam but avoids fizzling out can help ecommerce brands. Building quality links is one of the first steps to a well thought out strategy. As you grow it’s important to not forget that link building is a continual process. By monitoring and avoiding problems your effort will not go to waste, staying on-top of changes and technical problems will allow your site the opportunity to grow even more. Stay consistent and persevere! (Contributed by Sr. SEM Specialist Anna Horn)

Amazon to own 70% of the Voice Controlled Speaker Market this Year

We have been saying for a few years now that search is much more than typing on a keyboard or phone, search is visual and increasingly audial. With Alexa powering hundreds of thousands of requests a day, Amazon is now forecasted to control over 70% of the market. This is huge, especially if you are a product company selling ecommerce. Since Amazon already controls more product related searches than Google, you should probably already be on Amazon, but if you aren’t, talk to us… like now. (Contributed by Director of Search Marketing Justin Emig)

The Link Debate: Relevance vs. Authority

Relevance and authority are two of the most important factors when evaluating a link. Search Engine Land asked link building experts which they value more: relevance, authority, or both. Between relevance and authority, more people chose relevance. Read this Search Engine Land article to read what arguments the experts make for each side. We emphasize finding quality links that are relevant for our clients. (Contributed by Sr. Online PR Specialist Ellen Borza)

SEO Friendly URL’s

SEO friendly URL’s are important when it comes to ranking. In fact, URL length, path, keywords, and stings all rank between #46-#52 in Google’s top 200 ranking factors. Here are a few ways to optimize your URL’s. 1. Choose a top level domain, “.com” is ideal 2. Use HTTPS rather then HTTP 3. The shorter the length, the better the rankings. Try to stick around 50 characters or less 4. You URL’s should be readable and easy to understand 5. If you have to use a special character use a hyphen instead of an underscore 6. Stick to lowercase letters 7. Don’t use stop words, or fillers. Words like “a, “ “or,” and “an” do not bring value to the URL and are often overlooked by search engines. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Michelle Arnold)

The Showdown: SEO vs. PPC

Which one brings in the most ROI? That is usually the question. But there really is no definitive answer. Each business is different and all efforts show return. For a new business starting out, you would have to look at specifics, but maybe your best bet is PPC. Where as a company who is well established sees a greater harvest with their SEO efforts. The best way to look at your situation is to reflect on your digital marketing strategy and know exactly how to reach your prospective customers or clients. Both efforts work extremely well; analyze the pros and cons of each. Still unsure? Just ask! (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Angalena Malavenda)

Digital Marketing Continues to Eat Traditional

Google’s annual I/O conference was last week and with it comes a myriad of product announcements, fanfare, and optimism from the Google camp. However, this year was a different tone. Many of their major updates had less to do with digital and more to do with marketing. We feel this is coming to an inflection point in digital where it is less about being a separate discipline, and becoming the only discipline. Google Adwords is now showing in-store attribution (meaning they know you went to the store and saw an ad), YouTube is showing location to the nearest store after you watch a 30 second clip. These are the tip of the iceberg and if you aren’t considering your next evolution of digital strategy, you are significantly behind. (Contributed by Director of Search Marketing Justin Emig)

Snapchat Offering Discount Codes to Ad Buyers

In an attempt to make up for poor Q1 results, Snapchat is incentivizing media buyers to advertise with discount coupons. With Insta Stories largely slowing down Snapchat’s user growth, many advertisers are looking to spend their dollars elsewhere. Many also question if Snapchat advertising is truly a good deal. Because it’s a new platform, there’s nothing to compare it to. As Digiday points out, the discount codes suggest to advertisers that they are indeed getting a good value. (Contributed by Sr. Online PR Specialist Ellen Borza)

Google Expanding Audience Targeting Capabilities for Search

Google is making it possible to target “In-Market” audiences in Search campaigns. In-Market audiences include people who are ready to become a customer, based on various intent signals such as recent search history and browsing activity. This is a potential game-changer, because it’s now possible to tailor text ad messaging towards people who are much more likely to become a customer. I anticipate these campaigns will generate higher conversion rates at lower costs. (Contributed by Paid Search Specialist Kevin Koehn)

Google Adds Tool to Bridge the Gap

During their Marketing Summit this week Google announced their newest tool, Attribution. This free product is set to combine data from AdWords, Analytics, and Double Click into one interface. The tool has been long requested as digital marketers struggle to find the right way to report from multiple platforms. With this new tool Google also introduced a new attribution model. This model machine learns the account and is able to attribute conversions to the correct source, a refreshing take on attribution. (Contributed by Sr. SEM Specialist Anna Horn)

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