Understanding Churn Rate and Five Tips to Retain Engagement

Understanding Churn Rate and Five Tips to Retain Engagement

Customer acquisition is one of the most important components of a successful business. Finding and attracting new customers is the only reliable way to sustain and expand a business’ performance. But what happens to customers after you have made a successful sale?

Customer retention is the second half of business success. Being able to retain customers can make the difference between spending all of your time and money on acquiring new customers and using your resources in other areas. It is also something that business owners can easily ignore if they are too focused on just customer acquisition.

Businesses often fail to retain customers for a variety of reasons. Sometimes, the business model itself doesn’t make it easy for customers to repeat their business. Other times, a sole focus on customer acquisition leaves retention neglected.

Regardless of the reason, a lack of returning customers leads to a higher churn rate which can harm the business performance. Thankfully, customer retention is easy to manage with the right understanding and strategies.

What Is Churn Rate?

Simply put, the term “churn rate” is a measurement of how many customers a business loses over a given period of time. In other words, it’s the number of customers that fail to buy more products and services or to further engage with the business.

Measuring churn rate is rather simple. First, you have to select the given period of time you will measure. A week, a month, or a year all represent common time frames that you can work with.

For any given time frame, you have to take the difference between the number of starting and finishing customers. This answers the question, “How many customers did you actually lose in this time?”

The higher the rate, the more customers you lose over time. It is common for a business to have a churn rate in double digits. If it is over 50 percent, however, it may be a sign that improvement is required. Using the right strategies and methods, you can work to reduce this rate without harming your customer acquisition process.

Techniques

There are several techniques you can mix and match to increase customer retention over a given period of time. All of these techniques have one important thing in common: they all increase value for the customer. Customers will rarely stick around if they have no reason to keep doing business

This is the very reason you acquire customers in the first place. Something about your products, services, or overall business experience attracts new customers. After the initial sales period is over, customers will decide whether to stick around or return in the future.

Added value is the key to customer retention. Anything you can do to keep customers returning time and time again will help with this endeavor.

Strategy One: Diagnose the Problem

Before you can actually lower your churn rate, you have to determine what exactly is causing the loss of customer retention in the first place. Since there can be a plethora of reasons for a high churn rate, you have to diagnose the problem using the information you have available. Common sources of information include physical and digital interaction, customer information, and sales histories.

A customer database full of important personal, demographic, and sales information is your friend in this task. If you can keep track of the last time a customer purchased a product or service, you can immediately see how many customers you lost during a specific period of time.

Customer information may also reveal potential reasons for the high churn rate. If a certain product or service isn’t selling as well as others, sales histories will reveal this.

Communicating with existing customers can also help. Getting feedback on your business, products, and services will provide valuable information that will reveal hidden issues quantitative information alone can’t. Speak with customers through your website, social media, and physical locations if you have them.

Strategy Two: Engage With Customers

Quite often, customer loyalty is more than just finding value in the products and services of the business. Many customers are attracted to businesses that offer communities and relationships.

Just think about the last time you went into a retail store with friendly customer service. The engagement and communication can create a positive experience that promotes future business.

If you have a physical storefront, make sure your customer service is warm and inviting. Use customers’ first names, if possible. Have casual conversations to inquire about their likes, dislikes, and daily happenings.

Online, use social media and your website to engage with customers. You can communicate current store news through mediums, such as social media and email. You can also interact with customers through social media, as long as the content is appropriate for your business.

Strategy Three: Offer Unique Promotions

To increase customer retention for specific products and services, you can use the tried-and-true method of the promotional deal. Whether it takes the form of an extended promotional campaign or simple coupons, deals offer extra incentive for returning customers. This is where many businesses make a crucial mistake.

Business owners will sometimes use incentives like deals and promotions to attract new customers. For example, a certain product may be 25 percent off if this is your first time in the store. While this can be effective for customer acquisition, it can have an adverse effect on customer retention.

These types of deals often discourage customer loyalty. Over time, returning customers begin to expect greater rewards and treatment for their loyalty. Reward programs that fail to meet these expectations won’t be as successful in the long run.

Divide these incentive programs up so you can target both new and returning customers in different ways. Email marketing is a great way to tackle both groups of customers.

Strategy Four: Memberships

To take incentive rewards up to the next level, create a membership program for returning customers. This can be as simple as signing up to a subscription list or membership online or in-store.

Membership programs tend to offer extra value to returning customers through exclusivity. Particularly if membership is free or earned through customer loyalty, this will create a unique experience for returning customers. It also creates more incentives for new customers to stay on board for the long haul.

The trick to a good membership program is clarity and simplicity. Don’t bog down potential and existing members with an overwhelming amount of incentives.

Ideally, tailor the extra value they will receive to the interests of the customer. Analyze what products and services they are typically drawn to for a start.

Strategy Five: Expand Your Value

Sometimes, customer loyalty and retention can be increased through something completely unrelated to your products and services. For example, content marketing has become a popular form of customer retention in recent years.

Originally meant for customer acquisition marketing, content marketing offers potential customers additional information and stories to consume. Just like a popular website, this type of information attracts customers by offering them something they cannot get anywhere else.

Content marketing is also a good way to build your business brand. The trick is to provide content that is both interesting to the customer and related to your business.

In other words, you don’t want to provide information that is completely disconnected from the types of products and services you offer. If you have an existing brand, the content should also fit to avoid any confusion.

You can provide additional content in any number of ways. Digital channels like your website and social media platforms are common for content marketing. You can also provide this information in-store, through mail, email, or any other means of communicating with customers.

Lowering the Churn Rate

True success relies on a strategic approach to increasing your customer return rate. It isn’t enough to offer a few deals here and there without understanding the core problem. This means you have to approach the process step-by-step.

Start by understanding the problem areas. Why are customers leaving your business? Once you begin to identify these issues, you’ll have a better understanding of how to approach the problems overall.

Second, think about what types of strategies and approaches will help solve the problems. Is customer engagement an issue? If so, increase your customer service efforts online and in store.

Do customers like specific products and services you offer? If not, focus on more successful offerings or increasing the attractiveness of the problematic ones.

Finally, keep up the effort. Lowering your churn rate won’t happen overnight. Sometimes, the best you can hope for is retaining future customers.

Other times, it may be possible to bring back old customers or to keep the ones you have. The important part is to keep at it and change things that aren’t working as time goes on.

Jim Rulison serves as the CEO for Media Loop LLC (formerly the National Center for Pain Inc). Jim oversees the day to day operations for all lead generation accounts, with a concentration in the healthcare industry. Before joining Media Loop, Jim was the CEO of PME Home Health and was the founder of one of the nation’s first virtual call centers. He lives in Rochester New York area where he and his late wife raised their two children. Jim spends his free time with his family and enjoying cooking and his two dogs.

The post Understanding Churn Rate and Five Tips to Retain Engagement appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

Want A Boost In Organic Traffic? Optimize and Relaunch Your Old Content

Want A Boost In Organic Traffic? Optimize and Relaunch Your Old Content

Content marketing is not a tactic born of the online era. You can go back as far as 1895 to find John Deere producing a magazine called ‘The Furrow’ that featured content promoting the company’s range of farming equipment.

But unfortunately, the catalyst or the driver for the recent wave of content marketing was not necessarily customer engagement as it was for The Furrow. Instead, it was primarily search engine performance.

Under the guiding theory that Google loves fresh content, many marketers around the globe had routinely advised that we should publish as much content as we can.

The problem with this position is that we’re reaching a point of what Mark Schaefer calls ‘content shock.’ This is the point where there is more content produced online than the global population can consume.

On WordPress alone, 83.6 million posts are published every month!  Much of this is short-form content of dubious value. But thankfully, many agencies, marketers and freelancers now subscribe to producing longer-form content with the intention of providing more value to the reader. They consider that the longer the content, the more likely it will be to rank higher with Google.

This view is supported by various studies, including one from Brian Dean at Backlinko where they found that the average word count of results on Google’s front page is 1,890 words.

Image Source: https://backlinko.com/search-engine-ranking

But the danger of concentrating on the length of content is that we’re again missing the most important factor – user engagement.

This point is arguable though. After all, marketers and content strategists perform keyword research around trending topics and keyword volume every day, showing real concern for user engagement.

I simply make the point that this research is still being influenced by what works for search. This is a mistake. For example, there are some topics that don’t need 2,000 words to provide the reader with in-depth value. So, if you take a topic that only requires 1,000 to cover it well and stretch it to 2,000 words, what do you think will happen with your user engagement?

Optimal content length aside, if we’re going to be re-focusing our attention and commitment to the user, then we should look at our entire blog and consider all our existing posts.

You should be regularly auditing and optimizing your old blog posts to ensure they still deliver the user experience you intended when you launched them.

Auditing your content – a basic snapshot

A content audit conducted by an agency will involve a more in-depth technical analysis of your website’s content than I provide here, but let me give you a quick snapshot of how you can conduct a basic audit yourself.

1. Identify time or event-related content.

For example, did you publish a piece covering your 2015 industry awards? If you did, it will have little or no value to your audience now. But will you be covering the awards again in the future? If so, use a generic URL such as yoursite.com/industry-event/ and simply update the page each year.

But if you’re not going to feature the event again, consider deleting the page (and redirecting it) to make for a better user experience. That will also save Google the effort of indexing your low-value content.

2. Identify content with high-volume traffic that converts well.

This content is likely to be generating its traffic from search, so your main objective in optimizing these posts is to find ways of increasing the conversions that you drive from each page. Start testing your calls to action until you’re happy with the improvement. Then relaunch the posts again.

3. Identify content with low-volume traffic that converts well.

This is content that engages your audience and it drives leads/sales. Do your keyword research again. Search behavior evolves and perhaps the keywords that you used to optimize the post three years ago are not the optimal targets now. Optimize your post for the latest keywords.

You should also identify opportunities to add further value to this content. This will immediately open more search traffic for you.

The benefits of re-launching your content

Beyond simply optimizing your post when you re-launch it, you should promote it like you would a new piece. Share it via your social profiles again. Repurpose it. Use your usual paid promotion channels. Conduct your outreach.

The process of optimizing and promoting your relaunched post will give you a burst of new traffic. It will demonstrate to Google that it’s fresh content and it should re-evaluate its position within their index. If you’ve optimized the post well, it will demonstrate much-improved user engagement and will continue to improve its search position.

The beneficial results of optimizing older content can be easily found among the blogging community, including HubSpot and Backlinko.

HubSpot reports some stunning results. In their analysis, they identify that they have :
a) ‘…more than doubled the number of monthly leads generated by the old posts we’ve optimized.’
b) ‘Increased the number of monthly organic search views of old posts we’ve optimized by an average of 106%.’

Backlinko’s Brian Dean highlighted that he ‘boosted … organic traffic by 260.7% in just 14 days’.

So, I encourage you to conduct a basic audit of your blog to optimize those posts that need it. Re-launch and re-promote them, then analyze the results for yourself.

Quentin Aisbett is the founder of OnQ Marketing, an Australian-based digital agency. When he’s not knee-deep in SEO, content strategy, and analytics reporting, he is traveling or watching his beloved Australian Rules team the Brisbane Lions. If you want to get in touch with him find him on Twitter @onqmarketing or follow him on Quora.

The post Want A Boost In Organic Traffic? Optimize and Relaunch Your Old Content appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

5 Artificial Intelligence Tools for Content Marketing

5 Artificial Intelligence Tools for Content Marketing

Content discovery, writing, editing, SEO, content distribution, and data analysis are some of the operations that you can automate with AI. Find out five great tools to improve and speed-up your content marketing workflow.

How can you automate and scale-up your content marketing operations with artificial intelligence? What can you do today?

In this article, you’ll find out which tools can help you create more value, speed-up your operations, promote your content. All these things, by just hiring a digital brain on your team.

What is Artificial Intelligence?

Narratives about AI go from dystopia—robots will take over human work—to the dream of maximizing outcomes. In marketing, this means better results makes us imagine a world where every single arrow perfectly hits the center of its target.

Cool, but… what are we talking about exactly?

Artificial Intelligence is an umbrella term that includes a wide range of more or less mature technologies which simulate the functions of the human brain. This big growing family includes machine learning, deep learning, neural networks, NLP (natural language processing), and NLG (natural language generation), linked data, and many other fields of computer science.

How does AI apply to content marketing?

With Facebook, IBM, Google, Microsoft, Netflix: artificial intelligence has already entered our daily lives, and we’ve barely noticed it. The results of our web searches, the social media posts that appear on our feeds, and even the suggested tv series are the result of an analysis of our preferences and needs crossed with the available content.

The good news for marketers is that AI is not limited to a few tech giants anymore. Lately, affordable solutions have appeared on the market and fit the needs and budgets of SMEs.

Content discovery, writing, editing, SEO, content distribution, and data analysis are just some of the operations that you can automate with these intelligent technologies.

Writing and Editing

In March 2016 in Japan, a sci-fi novel written by an artificial intelligence program passed the first selection of a literary award. The novel ironically titled “The Day a Computer Wrote a Novel” didn’t win, and yet it opened to algorithms the art of creative writing, with a lot of media sensation.

It’s been awhile since international newspapers such as the Washington Post integrated AI in their editorial teams, leaving to the machines the task of resuming agencies’ takes. Freeing journalists from repetitive tasks allows them to invest more time and budget on in-depth analysis, reportages, research and on such quality content where human intelligence is needed.

What about marketing? More or less, the logic is the same: you can automate the production of routine content and focus on creative and strategic operations. Even editing can be quicker and easier when you use AI tools that check the grammar of your content.

#1 Acrolinx. Structured enterprises don’t have any problem producing content, but they have one in maintaining the internal coherence between diverse documents in terms of language, tone of voice, and style. Acrolinx intelligence is focused on this issue; it analyzes your texts and then suggests orthographic, grammar, and stylistic tips in order that the overall voice of the writer is consistent with the brand it represents.

#2 Grammarly. When you need a quick proofreading on your content, you can rely on one of the most popular AIs on the market, Grammarly. The tool has a simple text editor that you can download on your computer and it can also be integrated with other tools such as browsers, email clients, and Microsoft Office suite.

SEO

If you are a web writer and you find yourself struggling with SEO, you’ll be relieved to know that you can delegate SEO technicalities to a colleague who lives in the cloud. It will optimize your texts and make them understandable for machines and even more readable and enjoyable for your human readers.

#3 WordLift. This artificial intelligence for SEO specifically designed for WordPress helps content marketers to write without worrying about how search engines work. Basically, WordLift translates your articles in metadata that machines can understand and that can be used by chatbots, crawlers, and digital assistants. Moreover, this tool enriches the user experience of articles and web pages with content recommendations, automatic internal linking, data visualizations, and images.

Data Analysis

Imagine you can integrate real-time data analysis with the optimization of your marketing campaigns. It’s a dream come true.

#4 Crystal. Specialized in performance analysis for digital content, Crystal.io monitors stats from different channels and media – including your website and your social channels. It makes easy to publish new content and automates campaign management in order to get the most out of them. Moreover, Crystal.io is a window on the most important trends you should keep an eye on and allows you to stay on track.

#5 Quill Engage. Writing reports can be a time-consuming repetitive task. But isn’t data analysis the thing that machines can do best? Indeed. Quill Engage allows you to turn data into contextual interpretations and suggests to marketers the next actions towards their goals.

Key takeaways and conclusions

Artificial intelligence is not here to replace human intelligence; it can already work side by side with human colleagues. While AI is exceptionally good and efficient in data analysis and can offer suggestions and potential solutions, it is still up to us to think out creative solutions and make decisions about strategic choices.

“We are living in an era that Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai defined AI-First, where artificial intelligence is the main interface to access content and services.” Andrea Volpini, CEO of WordLift – the AI for SEO, said. “Companies, publishers and bloggers need to use AI to organize and promote their content.”

Selecting content from a limitless quantity of data and information you can find online, summing-up data, and interpreting them on the basis of the context, editing and optimizing texts won’t be exhausting tasks anymore, but just the basis for an efficient and effective content marketing.

Automating repetitive tasks means saving time – and you know how saved time can be useful to focus on the most strategic and creative tasks.

Digital marketer focused on content marketing, Silvia lives and works in Rome since 2003. After a ten-year experience covering different roles in digital communication, in 2017 she joined WordLift, where she manages content marketing with a strategic approach and a lot of emojis. 🤓

The post 5 Artificial Intelligence Tools for Content Marketing appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

How to Use Blogging to Drive More Traffic to Your Site

How to Use Blogging to Drive More Traffic to Your Site

Blogging is arguably the most effective way to drive continuous organic traffic to a website for a long period of time. It’s why every business from big brands such as Virgin and Starbucks to even the smallest retail stores and startups create a business blog from the very first day of the launch of their business.

Having a business blog not only increases the chances of your website getting ranked on Google by 434 percent but it also allows B2B marketers to generate 67 percent more leads than the businesses without a blog.

Blogs also take a major part in helping customers buying decisions. According to HubSpot, 47 percent of consumers usually read 3-5 blog posts before making a purchase.

To build a successful blog, you need to create exceptional blog posts that not only attract the attention of strangers but also rank well on search engines. We’ll show you how it’s done.

How To Create Effective Blog Posts

The process of developing a blog begins with a market research to identify and understand your target audience. Explore your customers’ interests, habits, the problems they’re having, and then find what kind of content you can create to offer solutions.

A blog post is only effective if you have a strategy in place to generate leads from your blog. Bringing in lots of traffic to your website is not enough. You should convert those visitors into email subscribers and leads to make the most of your efforts.

Make sure you have an email lead generation system in place with email marketing and optin forms to turn strangers into leads. Then, follow this step by step process to create highly effective blog posts.

Find The Right Topics

Once you’ve done your market research, you should have a clear understanding of the type of blog posts you need to create to attract the right type of audience to your blog.

The next step is to find the right topics to write blog posts. The best place to begin this search is Quora. This platform is filled with all kinds of questions people are having. Surprisingly, these are also the questions people mostly search on Google.

Go to Quora and browse different categories to find a thread relevant to your industry. Usually, if a thread has lots of views and followers, then it’s worth targeting.

You can then use this thread question to come up with a keyword and a title for your blog post. In this example, you can target the keyword “business blogging” and create a title like “How to Avoid the 10 Common Problems of Business Blogging”.

Now, go to Google and copy-paste the title you’ve come up with. Visit all the links in the top search results page and see how good they really are. Take note because you’ll need to create your blog post even better than all other websites to beat your competition.

Research Long-Tail Keywords

Optimizing your blog post for keywords is the most important part of getting higher ranking on Google. There’s already plenty of competition for keywords, so choose long-tail keywords with low competition to ensure your blog posts get the attention it deserves.

Go to Google Keyword Planner and search for the keyword you used to create your blog post title.

As you can see, the keyword “business blogs” appears to be a better choice for the blog post title because it has low competition but a good number of average monthly searches. But, you can make it even better by choosing an even better long-tail keyword, like “small business blogs.”

Collect 3 to 5 of those best keywords from the list. Blog post title is not the only place you can use keywords. You can also insert those keywords in many other areas as well.

Best Practices For Keyword Placement

Now that you have a list of keywords, where should you insert them?

Start with your blog post title. Your main keyword should be included in the title as well as the first or second paragraph of the article. Use other keywords when creating subheads, meta descriptions, and alt-tags for images.

You don’t have to insert the same keywords in your blog posts. You can also use synonyms as well. According to Steve Baker, an engineer at Google, synonyms affect 70% of user searches on Google. Remember to use them throughout your blog post paragraphs as well.

More importantly, make sure that you don’t stuff your blog post with lots of keywords. Google hate that type of content and you will be punished for it. 3 to 5 keywords is the optimum number of keywords you should use in a blog post.

Build Social Signals

The number of shares and Likes a blog post receives greatly increase the chances of getting higher rankings. According to a study on 23 million shares, the top 4 ranking posts on Google are the ones with the most social activity, especially on Facebook.

Develop a marketing campaign to get more shares and Likes for your posts from different social media channels. Consider the paid boosting system on Facebook and Twitter paid tweets to get a wider reach for your links.

The more shares you have, the higher it will rank on Google.

Conclusion

Building a blog takes time and a lot of effort. Don’t expect results right away. It can take from 3 weeks to up to 6 months before you see your blog posts ranked on the main pages of Google.

Consistency is the key. Keep developing great blog posts and you will eventually see a slow but steady growth of website traffic that will last for a long time.

Syed Balkhi is an award-winning entrepreneur and online marketing expert. He is the co-founder of WPBeginnerOptinMonsterWPForms, andMonsterInsights.

The post How to Use Blogging to Drive More Traffic to Your Site appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

The Decline of Social Traffic and the SEO Renaissance

The Decline of Social Traffic and the SEO Renaissance

Recent trends show why SEO should always be the cornerstone of your WordPress traffic acquisition strategy.

Everyone wants traffic, and there was a time when one of the best ways to grow it was through social media. However, that particular party may be over. Twitter accounts for less than 2.5 percent of traffic to publishers, and Instagram and Pinterest barely supply 1 percent together. But the big story is Facebook. Once the single biggest source of referral traffic for many sites, it now represents just 22 percent, and that share has been falling dramatically for more than a year.

Data from Parse.ly, which tracks visits to more than 2,500 publishers, shows that ahead of the 2016 US presidential election, more than 40 percent of traffic to those sites came from Facebook. By the end of 2017, it was less than 26 percent. Whilst the data concerns big digital publishers, the trend affects everyone, including WordPress blogs and other smaller content sites.

The chart below shows the amount of traffic coming to publishers from Google and Facebook since the beginning of 2017. It’s not just Facebook’s decline – the huge growth in Google mobile visitors is very striking. This can largely be attributed to the growing popularity of AMP (and perhaps a good reason to make sure your site works with AMP).

Source: Chartbeat

Social traffic was never a steady way to grow your audience anyway

How much was social referral traffic really worth? As Scott Galloway points out in this great video, Audience vs. Traffic: “People don’t tune in to Buzzfeed because they’re fascinated by the journalism, they click because someone forwarded them ‘Pick some of your favorite potato dishes and we’ll tell you your best quality’.” Social referrals are fickle, hard to monetize, and disappear when Facebook changes the algorithms. They’re traffic, not an audience.

Even before Facebook’s changes, Buzzfeed, champions of winning traffic, had apparently been seeing a decline in unique US visitors for two years. For sites trying to make money that haven’t built an audience, the decline in social referrals is just the icing on a pretty unappetizing cake in many ways. Ad yields are declining and the use of ad-blockers is on the rise. But many special interest and magazine sites are flourishing – usually by using their users’ loyalty to monetize in other areas like subscriptions or e-commerce.

Long-term, the move away from desperately trying to drive and monetize social referral traffic is a necessary step, but right now it’s still hurting many people. So, how can you thrive even if you’re struggling to get traffic from social sources?

The antidote to declining social traffic

One answer is Google. As the Chartbeat graphic shows, Google is quickly regaining its status as the primary source of referrals. So the main question becomes, how do you drive more organic traffic to your website via the search engine result pages (SERPs)?

Basically, you need to refocus your efforts away from social traffic and re-energize your Search Engine Optimization (SEO). As a quick refresher, SEO is the umbrella term for many tactics, all of which aims to optimize your content for search engine algorithms, so that you rank higher when a potential visitor asks a query. The higher you rank, the better your natural traffic becomes, and the more chances you get to convert that traffic into a loyal, revenue-generating audience.

However, SEO in 2018 is not the SEO you remember: Google is always tinkering with algorithms and features (like AMP), and that means the best SEO tactics constantly change. Sometimes quite radically.

What are the ranking factors that influence your SEO score most these days? Google famously doesn’t give us full transparency on ranking factors, but recently large studies by intelligence platforms such as SEMrush have cast some light into the ranking darkness. The answers probably aren’t what you expect.

The days of keyword stuffing are over

No, it’s not keywords (in the anchor, body, title or anywhere else) or backlinks. It’s your engagement metrics. The top 4 ranking factors are direct website visits, time on site, page views per session and bounce rate. This isn’t surprising really when you think about it: Google wants to find the ‘best’ answers for queries, so happy Google users are a key indicator. What they’ve worked out is that engagement indicators, like low bounce rate, high pages per session and superior dwell time, are the best signs of a good search answer. They’re also hard to game, which can’t be said for keywords and backlinks.

This all means that there is now another very obvious reason to try to increase your engagement metrics: high engagement is a virtuous cycle. More engagement directly means more new organic traffic, which in turn means a greater opportunity to monetize your site and build a loyal audience, which means higher engagement and more organic traffic.

Source: SEMrush

SEMrush’s study results are backed by industry experts such as Larry Kim, Founder of WordStream and CEO of Mobile Monkey. He says that “having positive website engagement metrics is critical” and he presents the data that shows the relationship between engagement rates (such as bounce rate and time on site) and rankings here.

So, yes, you shouldn’t ignore keywords and backlinks, but the biggest opportunity to increase organic traffic from Google comes directly from boosting on-site engagement metrics. This is especially true for established sites that already rank fairly well.

That leaves one question: how do you improve your SEO? If you’re already creating great content, what can you do that will impact these metrics right now?

How to effectively raise your site engagement and search traffic

SEO expert Matthew Woodward describes internal link building and content recirculation as “the most powerful SEO tactic you are not using.” Why? It increases engagement.

Internal content recommendations, or related posts in the WordPress ecosystem, are the best way to help readers discover relevant content that they really want to read. This means fewer people leaving after reading just one article, more articles per session and more time on your site. Most importantly, the more of your content they explore, the more likely they’ll be to come back. Search visitors can be fickle if they’ve come looking for a particular piece of content and often leave as soon as they’ve consumed it. You give yourself the best chance of converting them into a loyal audience member by providing other high-quality related posts that are relevant to their interests.

Using related posts is even more important when you consider that, for over half of publishers, fewer than 10 percent of visitors enter the site via the homepage, according to research by Parse.ly. This means your content pages also have to do the job of the homepage and help people find the next piece of interesting post.

What all this adds up to is this: related posts are crucial to growing your traffic and keeping a loyal audience!

SEO has a renewed importance, and the days of keyword stuffing are behind us. You should be doing everything you can to improve your user experience, and an easy way to do this right now, as well as implementing tools like AMP, is great related posts.

Mads Holmen

Mads Holmen is founder and CEO of Bibblio, a company working to revolutionize related posts for WordPress with machine learning algorithms and a lot of hard work!

The post The Decline of Social Traffic and the SEO Renaissance appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

How to Translate Your WordPress Website Using the Weglot Translate Plugin

A collection of raised hands.

Translating your WordPress website into other languages is a smart way to reach a wider audience and increase your traffic. If your site is only available in a single language, you could be losing out on a lot of potential leads and conversions.

Fortunately, you don’t need to speak multiple languages to translate your site – the process of doing so is simple with the Weglot Translate plugin. Using this, you can automatically translate every part of your WordPress site, and manually fine-tune your translations in a snap.

In this article, we’ll discuss why you might want to translate your website. Then we’ll introduce the Weglot Translate plugin and its key features, and walk you through how to use it to add more languages to your site. We’ll also explore some of the plugin’s key customization options. Let’s get started!

Why You Should Translate Your WordPress Website

It’s estimated that there are nearly 7,000 different languages in the world, and yet over half of all websites use just a single one: English. This makes some degree of sense, as it’s the language most commonly spoken by internet users. However, it’s by far the only one. In terms of the number of speakers, it’s almost tied with Chinese, which appears on less than 2 percent of all websites. Similarly, while half a billion users speak Spanish, only just over 5 percent of sites use the language.

In a nutshell, by only delivering your site in English, you’re effectively limiting its scope. If your site has an international focus, such as an e-commerce business, you shouldn’t expect all users to be fluent in a single language. Therefore, many sites are taking steps to provide translated content in order to become more welcoming to a wider audience. For example, WordPress has its Polyglots team, who are working to translate the platform into as many languages as possible.

Beyond making your site more accessible, translating it also has a number of benefits for you:

With all this in mind, you should think about making your site more international. However, before you do, let’s look at some key considerations.

What You Need to Consider Before Translating Your Site

Before you translate your site, there are some things you should bear in mind. First, you need to think about implementation and compatibility. We’ll discuss this in more detail later, but you need to use a solution that is easy to implement on your site, such as a WordPress plugin.

You also need to consider which languages you want to use. This can be done by investigating your site’s analytics to see where your visitors are based. You should also perform keyword research with a focus on multilingual keywords. This should give you a solid idea of who your visitors are, and which languages may help you grow your audience.

We also recommend researching ‘language pairs’. Basically, this is a combination of the language your content is currently in, and the potential translated language. In short, consider the most common language pairs and which ones make the most sense for your site.

Finally, you need to find a translation solution that works for you. Let’s look at some right now.

A Look at WordPress-Specific Translation Solutions

The most basic way you can translate your website is to simply hire a translator. While this can yield good results, it’s not without problems. You’d likely need a translator for each language you’d like to use, which can get expensive. If your site is quite big, it would also take a significant amount of time, not to mention the upkeep as your site grows.

A more efficient option is to use machine translation. If you’ve ever used Google Translate, you’ll be familiar with the concept. Essentially, this is an automatic process that translates your site without human interaction. This is a lot less time-consuming and often cheaper, but it’s also notoriously imperfect. For this reason, you need to ensure the solution you use enables you to customize the generated translations.

There are several WordPress plugins you can use, such as Weglot Translate, WPML, and Polylang. You need to make sure the plugin you choose is compatible with both your site and your other plugins. For instance, if your site runs WooCommerce and your plugin is incompatible, large chunks of content will be left untranslated.

Introducing Weglot Translate

Weglot Translate is a plugin that enables you to automatically create a fully-translated version of your entire WordPress site. This plugin is one of the easiest options available to use and can translate your site in seconds. It offers over 100 different languages and is fully compatible with all themes and plugins, including e-commerce solutions such as WooCommerce. Weglot also has links to professional translators, giving you the option of ordering translations if required.

Key Features

  • Translates your entire WordPress site and is fully compatible with any theme or plugin, including WooCommerce.
  • Requires minimal configuration due to the quick plug-and-play setup.
  • Automatically applies Google’s SEO best practices for multilingual pages.
  • Gives you full control over your content and translations, enabling easy collaboration.

Price: Weglot offers a free version and several premium plans, starting at around $12 (€9.90) per month.

How to Translate Your WordPress Website Using the Weglot Translate Plugin

Let’s now put all of this theory into practice by translating a site using Weglot Translate. We’ll be using a site running WooCommerce and the Storefront theme, but Weglot Translate is compatible with all WordPress sites, regardless of theme and plugins.

Our site is currently only available in English but we want to create a version in Swedish. Here’s the original site:

A WordPress site running WooCommerce and featuring sample products.

To start, you’ll need to download, install, and activate the Weglot Translate plugin from the WordPress.org Plugin Directory.

Installin the Weglot plugin.

Next, you’ll need an API key, which you can get for free by signing up for a Weglot account. You’ll see your API key appear, as well as a link to your personal dashboard. We’ll return to that in a minute, but for now, copy your key and return to your WordPress site.

A Weglot API key.

Click on the new Weglot option in your WordPress dashboard, and you’ll be taken to your translation configuration page. Here, you can create new translations for your site and determine how it will appear within WordPress:

The Weglot translation configuration page in WordPress.

Start by pasting your API key in the first field, then begin creating your first translation. Keep the original language set to English and then select Swedish as the Destination Language.

The next section lets you determine how the language selector will appear on your site. You can set its appearance, and also where it should appear on your pages by default:

Configuring the Weglot language selector.

Finally, you can add exclusions to restrict translations to certain parts of your site:

Setting the translation exclusions.

Click Save Changes when you’re done and your site will now be multilingual! In order to check out the result, open your site and find the selector you created. By default, it will appear in the bottom-right corner:

The language selector as it appears in the bottom-right corner of a page.

Select Swedish and the site will load with a new extension to the URL that represents the language. In this case, /sv/.

The Swedish translation of the original site.

This is looking great, but because the translation is automatic it may need some minor fine-tuning to get it perfect. You can do this easily by returning to your Weglot dashboard, which you can access via the Main configuration page in WordPress:

Accessing the Weglot dashboard from WordPress.

Click Edit my translations to access your dashboard. Here you can click Translations List to see all of the translated elements on your site:

The Weglot translations dashboard.

You can see that all elements have been machine-translated, but you can edit one by simply selecting the translation and typing in a replacement.

Updating a translation in Weglot.

You’ll notice that the translated element will be saved automatically and marked as Human reviewed. It will also be updated in real-time on your site:

The updated element as it appears on the site.

You can also use the Weglot Visual Editor to add and edit translations directly on your page.

Weglot's Visual editor.

When you click Start Editing, your current site will load. By hovering over any page element, you will notice a green button overlay appear:

Weglot's live editing feature.

You can click this to add or edit a translation for the selected element. A pop-up will appear where you’ll see the original text and the current translation:

The "Human Reviewed" designation in Weglot Translate.

Change this to your requirements, then click OK to save. The new translation will appear immediately on your site, just like before. With that, we’ve created an entirely new translation for our site! Of course, you should repeat this for however many languages you’d like to translate for.

Conclusion

Translating your site into multiple languages might seem like an impossible goal, especially if you’re not multilingual yourself. However, thanks to the Weglot Translate plugin, you can quickly create a site that reaps all the benefits of catering to non-native speakers, but without the time-consumption and hassle.

In this article, we’ve discussed these benefits in full, including how it enables you to reach a broader international audience, and increase your SEO rankings and conversions. We recommend taking time to consider which languages your site would benefit from, then use Weglot Translate to add translations to your site with ease!

Do you have any questions about translating your WordPress website? Let us know in the comments section below!

Image credit: geralt.

John Hughes

John is a blogging addict, WordPress fanatic, and a staff writer for WordCandy.

The post How to Translate Your WordPress Website Using the Weglot Translate Plugin appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

4 Secrets to a Successful Retargeting Campaigns

4 Secrets to a Successful Retargeting Campaigns

Retargeting is currently one of the most-used digital marketing strategies on the market. The proven effectiveness of retargeting campaigns and the level of personalization you can now do are great things to have in your arsenal, especially with the market being as competitive as it is today. Retargeting – differs only in method from remarketing – isn’t just useful for sales purposes, but also for building a better relationship with potential and existing customers.

Similar to other digital marketing tools, you have to know how to use retargeting to your advantage. Simply taking raw data and hoping the campaign will work will not cut it. That is why in this article, we are going to take a look at the four secrets to a successful retargeting campaign.

Relevance

The first secret is relevance. Relevance is everything in retargeting; in fact, it is the underlying principle that makes retargeting so popular and effective. Instead of displaying the same ads to every visitor or potential customers, you utilize the information you have on those customers to deliver a more personalized message.

By using cookies and other tools, you can get to know your potential customers better. Let’s say a visitor browses through your collection of T-shirts. The ads displayed to that particular visitor will focus more on T-shirts and other relevant items. The way this is achieved is by reading cookies generated when the visitor browses through your site. Of course, you have to be non-intrusive (and present a clear privacy policy) to incorporate retargeting successfully.

There are advanced retargeting tools too. For example, OnSite Retargeting from OptInMonster is one of the most comprehensive retargeting tools you can use today. The suite offers so many features, from the ability to gather insights on customers to tailored advertising messages and retargeting campaigns. You don’t have to do anything manually either, since the entire suite is automated.

Variation

Relevance is important, but there is another secret that will boost the effectiveness of your retargeting campaign: variation. Sure, the main goal of retargeting is to remind users about the items they searched for – or have added to the shopping cart – in the past. That said, you should recommend other items in the same category or complimentary items that will get users more excited about making a purchase.

Variation is what will separate your retargeting campaign from the rest of the market. Instead of displaying the same items over and over again through display ads and other channels, you can now recommend more items from your catalogue to attract the users into returning to your site. This is a strategy that many businesses have used successfully as well.

Try searching for hotels in a certain area on Agoda or other travel sites. It will not be long before you start seeing ads on special deals and offers for hotels in that area when you open other ad-supported sites. What’s interesting is the fact that these ads will not only display the hotel you were interested in, but also other great deals in the area.

Some retargeting campaigns take it a step further. Using the previous example, you may start seeing ads for flights to the destination, holiday packages, and tours that are even more affordable than when you choose to book things separately, and of course additional services that compliment a visit to the destination of your choice.

Positioning

Next, we have positioning. Retargeting isn’t about spamming your potential customers with ads; that will only drive them away. You have to be strategic with the ad placement and timing. Instead of bombarding customers with ads – and wasting a lot of money in the process – you now have the option to fine-tune details about the campaign for maximum effectiveness.

If you’re selling holiday packages, for instance, you can take advantage of the industry insights to refine your targeting. For example, you can display the retargeting ads during peak office hours – usually around 3pm when workers are already tired but still have plenty to do – to capture impulsive customers. Some potential customers will make their purchases almost immediately.

Where the ads are displayed matters too. Many businesses are more interested in beating their competitors than reaching actual customers. As a result, you see many retargeting ads being displayed on competitors’ sites or on search results for certain keywords associated with the competitors. This is a strategy that may work from time to time, but it is not the strategy that offers the highest return on investment.

Instead, focus on the customers. You already know who your target customers are, which means it is relatively easy to learn about the sites they normally visit and their online behavior in general. Use those insights to position your ads strategically and you’ll be surprised by the return on investment you get from the campaign. You can also use analytics plugins like MonsterInsights to review how your visitors are behaving on your site. If the bounce rate is incredibly high on a page where you’ve just placed an ad, you’ll know it needs moving.

Delivery

Last but not least, there is the delivery of the ad itself. This covers more than just the content of the ads. What the customers see after clicking on the ads matter just as much. Fortunately, you also have more tools to use and a wider variety of contents to add to the digital ads. You can even display multiple items and set up hotspots that lead to different landing pages.

Customers are much smarter – and much more sensitive – today. Instead of using the old-school strategy of extravagance, you can get better engagement with subtle and clean display ads. Limit the number of colors and animations you use and try to make the ads appear seamless regardless of where they are placed.

The next part of this equation is the landing page itself. There is no point in doing a retargeting campaign if you’re only going to direct customers to the home page of the site instead of the actual product page; unfortunately, this is also a mistake many businesses still make today. Create a landing page that personalizes the customer’s experience and you can take your conversion rate to an entirely different level.

Using Retargeting Effectively

Aside from the four secrets we covered earlier, there are strategies that will also help you improve the effectiveness of your retargeting campaign. The one thing you always have to keep in mind when using this digital marketing instrument is that the customers need to feel good. This means improving user experience (UX) at every turn.

Small things such as displaying the customers’ abandoned shopping carts when they revisit your site are the kind of touches you need to deliver that feel-good UX. They will appreciate the fact that you remember the items they were interested in; they are far more likely to finish the checkout process too, since there are only one or two more steps to complete.

Lastly, always go the extra mile to make the user experience very personalized. Offer exclusive discounts for the specific purchase the customer wants to make, deliver a variation of your key message that works for that particular customer, and don’t forget to offer support whenever possible.

These are strategies that you can implement easily, but they are strategies that will further enhance the impact of a retargeting campaign. With the four secrets and top strategies tailored to the needs of your business, a simple retargeting campaign can turn into an incredible investment that keeps paying off.

Zoe is a young, passionate writer with ample experience in blogging and all things e-commerce.

The post 4 Secrets to a Successful Retargeting Campaigns appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here

How To Create Killer Content And Get Noticed

How To Create Killer Content And Get Noticed

Quality content is incredibly important for any website whether you’re a travel blogger or a large enterprise company. To grow your brand, you need a way to connect with your audience on a deeper level. This is where a blog comes in. If you don’t have a blog, you are doing something wrong. In order to create a complete digital experience for your viewers, you’ll need to create many touch points by which to reach them.

However, once someone comes to your blog they better be reached with really good, quality content, otherwise, they may not take you seriously as an expert in your field and move on.

When your blog’s content is better, the results will be better. Therefore, pay attention, take notes, and make sure you implement everything you’ve learned here.

Always Know and Understand the Audience You Address

Every blogger needs to understand his target audience. The audience you’re writing for should be specifically defined and understood. By knowing what your customers think and do, by understanding their biggest issues and challenges, and by studying their desires and dreams, you will only then be able to bring relevancy into their lives.

Your content is designed to be useful. Therefore, you have to know your audience inside and out before even attempting to distribute anything online!

Be Relevant, Concise, and Easily Digestible

For content to be highly efficient, it needs to be relevant, concise, and easy-to-digest. Any writer needs to understand the art of transforming complicated concepts, details, and information into simple words and sentences, in a way that anyone could understand.

Moreover, every time you’re writing a post, you need to consider whether it’s relevant to your target persona (create one if you haven’t yet). Don’t write unnecessary words unless you want to bore your readers and witness a high bounce rate!

Have a Clear Objective

Effective content can only be called effective once it delivers certain benefits. Your business and blog’s objectives might be varied. Through amazing content, you can:

  • Improve your brand awareness
  • Generate leads
  • Improve website traffic
  • Pitch a sale
  • Acquire clients and contacts
  • Get high search engine rankings

Depending on what you want to achieve, you should plan and write your content in such a way that it will naturally lead the reader toward your desired destination. Never develop content without knowing its primary objective.

Develop and Perfect Your Unique Voice

Every writer has a unique voice. Once you become accustomed to the grammar and spelling issues and with the way you organize your sentences, you can finally start working on your writer’s voice. When we start writing, we always tend to copy other people. And it’s good – it helps us write correctly.

However, correct content is merely enough to attract remarkable results. You’ll need more than that, and one of the things you can initially focus on is your writer’s voice. This voice of yours will constantly be optimized throughout your writing journey, so don’t worry, as long as you stay consistent, you’ll define it better and better.

Craft Great Headlines

Your headlines are as important as your content. Without the initial impact of a well-written headline, your blog posts will rarely benefit from a lot of traffic. To improve your marketing campaign’s CTR’s and also to decrease your marketing costs, you should focus on your titles.

Think of it this way: in a sea of information, you need to stand out and the best way to do that is with your headline. If you see 10 white cows and one green cow on a field, you’ll probably note that green cow. It will become your main focus of attention for a while. Making your titles interesting and informative is a quick way to get noticed and stand out.

Pay Close Attention to Editing and Proofreading

If you expect impeccable results, you must deliver impeccable content. There’s no doubt that careless mistakes such as grammar and spelling errors throughout your texts will lead to negative effects. Besides the fact that your brand’s reputation will be under attack, you’ll also lose a lot of potential leads and sales.

Charles Carrey is the CEO of one of the best essay writing service reviews platform on the web. I asked for his opinion as a CEO of a service that deals with editing and proofreading, here’s what he suggests:

“Web readers never like to read text that is poorly edited and proofread. One mistake could be enough for some to simply stop trusting your authority. If you can’t handle it, take advantage of tools like Grammarly, or perhaps leverage the help of a professional editor/proofreader.”

Engage with your Readers

When you write something, try not to be boring. As you read through this article, you can probably notice that I’m talking directly to you, using a lot of “you,” “your,” and so on. Moreover, I’m also interrupting my sentences every now and then. I’m underlining the important words whenever I want to emphasize something or to capture your attention.

The reason for all this is simple: the more I engage the more you’ll stay with me. To engage with your readers means to address them like if you were talking to a friend. Make it a discussion, not a report!

Align Your Content’s Message with Your Marketing and Sales Message

Your content should have the same message as your marketing and sales material. This concept is in a close relationship with your branding. Basically, if you want to be a blog that is tough with its customers, you need to be tough throughout all your content. On the other hand, if you have a blog that speaks to people with medical issues, for instance, your message must be milder and smoother.

You don’t want people who visit your website because they’ve clicked on a relevant ad to be shocked by the differences between your ad and your actual content.

Take Advantage of Writing Tools and Outsourcing (When Needed)

Taking advantage of digital tools that are addressed specifically to writers is a smart move. For example, you can use grammar and spelling tools, SEO writing tools, and general content writing tools. Skip through these tools and see which of them would fit your business needs the best.

Considering that your blog is growing and you need help, building a professional relationship with a freelance content creator is yet another good decision that you can make. As long as your outsourcing delivers a visible ROI, you’re on the right path towards progress.

Analyze, Measure, Optimize

Lastly yet most importantly, you should consistently analyze, measure, and optimize your content development process and your content marketing strategies. The more content you create and measure the better you’ll know what works best and what doesn’t.

Testing is the key to great marketing. Now, if you can create terrific content and promote it in the most efficient way, your blogging performance will skyrocket in no time. Remember to stay consistent. You can’t become an amazing writer overnight. It takes practice, repetition, and true commitment. There are really no shortcuts to becoming a better writer, so start grinding!

Takeaways

Content writing is both skill and art. You first learn the ropes, practice for a while, test, optimize, observe, and when you’re ready, when you got it all covered, you can begin making art. There are lots of ways to develop extremely powerful content marketing campaigns that will not only make your target audience more emotional but also more prone to take action and follow your directions. That usually means that you end up with leads and customers. It’s all linked. Better content, better business!

Julie Petersen is a blogger and an editor. She works for College Paper Writing Services Reviews to help students and other people with writing assignments.

The post How To Create Killer Content And Get Noticed appeared first on Torque.

Read Full Article Here