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Two of the best from Brighton SEO

Digital specialists Paul Edge and Tom Roberts attended Brighton SEO last week, the digital event that has grown from 20 people chatting about SEO in a pub to selling out all 3,500 Brighton Centre tickets in 13 minutes. Here’s some of their highlights.

Brighton SEO is so much more than just talks about search engine optimisation (SEO). The agenda is jam-packed with training led by some of the most talented digital marketers from across the world. To give you an idea of the breadth of training available in this two-day event, Tom and I split our time across sessions spanning local SEO, site speed, planning campaigns for the Black Friday retail extravaganza and how to work smart in PPC. Here’s a quick run-down on two stand-out talks from the day …

10 Dos and 5 Don’ts for Local SEO Success – Claire Carlile

Link to the slides

Local SEO is the first place to start work if you own a small business. If you’re not a small business owner reading this, stick with me, it’s still relevant because the principles of local SEO are applicable to bigger health businesses that have a regional network of vet or medical practices. Claire gave clear actionable tips that could be completed without spending a lot of money to increase the visibility of a business in local searches.

What is local SEO?

Research shows that 50 per cent of all local searches lead to a person visiting a shop, so if you want your practice to be found locally it’s time to move from the yellow pages to digital strategies, such as setting up your Google My Business (GMB) profile.

Google My Business (GMB)

Since Google closed its social media platform Google+, it has invested its energy in GMB, the business profiles you find on Google Maps. Claire spoke about how new GMB features are continually being rolled out to enable customer interaction. Coming away from the presentation, it certainly felt like having presence on GMB is essential in the local SEO toolbox.

Need reviews?

Once you have your GMB profile set up, Claire showed us how to use the GatherUp plugin to gain off and online Google reviews using the “Write a Review” function. Claire explained the importance of replying to reviews to manage your community and your online reputation.

Adding images

It won’t matter if you have five-star reviews if you don’t post new images of your clean and tidy business that employs super professional staff. Posting new images regularly will avoid Google pulling in the closest photo it can find to your postcode, which is normally the dreaded car park picture!

Get a free website

I was amazed to find out that you can create a professional business website for free. Every GMB profile gives the option to build a mobile-optimised website and Google will automatically use the information and photos from your GMB listing to help you with the site design.

If you’re thinking of getting started with local SEO, here’s Claire’s big list of local SEO resources to help you kick things off.

Land Grab: How to win business from your competitors with Google PPC – Tenesha Stafford

Link to the slides

Learning the data

Learning data from your competitors is nothing new within Paid Media and it’s something that has been around for some time. With over 85per cent of ‘over-the-fold’ areas in Google now being occupied by paid adverts, it’s only right that taking an in-depth look into your competition is taken seriously.

Free data within Google

You can find competitor data within the Google Adwords platform with minimal fuss. With impression share data, you’re able to determine which competitors are competing with you for the same keywords. By analysing the data, you can determine if your competition is being more aggressive than you in their bids and their overall budget.

Another important detail about your competitors can be found within the outranking share. This metric allows you to see how often you outrank your competition when you appear in the same keyword auction.

Key learnings

The main takeaway from this talk was that it’s great to look at competitor research with an investigative eye, however don’t lose sight of the overall account goals and progress. Competitive research is only useful if used as part of a Paid Media Strategy, not the lead driver in determining the best way to move forward.

If you are looking for help with PPC and local SEO, then just drop myself or Tom an email.

is a Digital Account Director with over six years experience making engaging digital content convert.