User engagement – all brands want it, yet not all achieve it.
It’s well known in the SEO community that User Engagement is extremely critical in the success of anything you do in the digital world.
Given that Google has been constantly working on giving users what they want as quickly and efficiently as possible – it comes as no shock that Google ranks sites higher on SERP if your website meets the cut of presenting users with engaging content that help solve a pressing need.
User Engagement is essentially the way a customer responds to your offering, such as a particular product, service, advertisement or website. While there is no specific way to measure engagement, it often comes in the form of actions – such as downloads, clicks, likes and shares online.
In other words, if users are engaging with your content – it also tells Google that your website is relevant and useful, and that is what will ultimately get you to the top of the SERP page.
All that being said, it’s time to reveal 8 proven ways to increase your brand’s user engagement, starting with:
1. Don’t make basic technical SEO errors
Going back to basics – users today are extremely impatient and unforgiving when it comes to technical issues, deeming it as highly disruptive to their experience of your website.
Issues such as an error 404, being redirected to a wrong page, having broken links, duplicate content and non-mobile optimized pages is a sure way to turn off potential customers.
This is why hiring a Digital Marketing Agency with the technical know-how can be extremely helpful in lowering the chance of angry users – further impacting your rankings and conversions down the line. And to that, we say yes!
2. Not investing in HTTPS security
HTTPS is pretty much a no-brainer, especially if you are selling products on your website which require customers entering highly confidential and sensitive information.
Apply this to yourself as a web user – would you want to feel like you are able to entrust all your personal details on all your favourite websites?
Check to see if your site is HTTPS secured by simply typing in your domain name into Google Chrome and you should be able to see the “secure” message.
Otherwise, it might be time to start investing in an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate, or work with your hosting providers to guide you in configuring your website.
Increased trust and confidence = Increased business
3. Brush up on your internal linking skills
Internal linking is one of the most important things you can do for your SEO.
The whole point of internal linking is to connect one page of your website to a different page on the exact same website.
Other than being completely free and easy to implement, internal linking has 3 main benefits:
1) Aids Google in crawling and understanding your website better.
2) Acts as the architecture and internal hierarchy of your website.
3) Distributes page authority throughout your website.
Building an intricate layer of internal links means creating tons of content. Don’t forget other best practices – categorize and tag your posts appropriately so that you can refer your visitors to other pieces of content that might interest them, stringing them along and getting them to stay engaged longer.
Does internal linking sound new to you? Then consider enrolling into one of our Digital Marketing Courses, where you will be provided with step-by-step guidance on how to start doing it on your own.
And just in case you were wondering, there is no strict rule to follow when it comes to how many links you can have per page. If it’s useful, by all means, do it.
4. Offer a search button
Relating back to internal linking (see how we tried to link content here) – search buttons are equally small yet powerful.
When people come to your website in search of answers, they expect to find it almost immediately – if not, they’ll simply head somewhere else.
The search bar can be added almost anywhere on your site (typically at the header), that will allow people to search the entire site for specific keywords – especially useful when trying to navigate a website with large amounts of content.
Site search data can be useful in creating more content as well – shedding light onto potential keywords and topics that you would have otherwise not have thought of previously. It’s definitely a great tool that brands should look into.
5. Create helpful and purposeful content
And sometimes, this means giving away free knowledge.
What do you we mean by helpful and purposeful? It’s undeniable that the best content marketing strategies are the best way to increase user engagement.
Instead of haphazardly creating content from the top of your head – set a goal or purpose that your content should meet, such as guiding your target audience to solve an imminent problem that they have.
Which also brings us to our next point:
6. Create a variety of content
Short-form, long-form, text, audio or visual – you name it.
Everyone is different, and the way that individuals engage with and take in information differs from person to person. Some of us would much rather consume videos, while others gravitate towards 1,500-word long essays.
Play around with your content – try using videos and infographics, using key metrics to see how engagement and visitor behaviours change on your website. Podcasts are also fast increasing in popularity, acting as pretty handy pieces of content that are easy to digest on the daily commute.
Consider mixing up your text content as well – may we suggest e-books, testimonials, case studies, comparison sheets, user-generated content, how-to guides and reviews?
Bonus tip: creating surveys using original data that you have collected can also be exciting and fresh – both for you and your readers. Surveys can also make you more credible and become the go-to resource when people need further information, especially in today’s data-driven society.
7. Put those email addresses to good use
Emails go all the way back – proving time and time again that users love engaging and building relationships with brands through this often-underestimated platform.
Emails have been shown to provide high CTRs (Click-Through-Rate) at about 3% – a much higher number when compared to a other marketing channels.
Our advice? Keep your subscribers coming back by delivering highly-personalised content directly to their inboxes on a frequent basis. Be sure to make it a two-way thing – allow your customers to reply and contact you whenever.
Talk about your latest promotions, updates, events and any other useful nuggets of information that will be valuable to your users – working simultaneously with your overall content marketing strategy and social media marketing goals.
Bonus tip: email addresses are also extremely useful in creating custom and lookalike audiences on Facebook – generating an additional pool of potential customers that you can tap into or retarget for even better results.
8. Multiple and concise CTAs (Call-To-Action)
Ever seen an advertisement that keeps bugging you to buy a product, even though you have zero intentions of purchasing it?
It’s both haunting and annoying, and as great SEO marketers and ethical brands who think for our users – let’s try to steer clear from doing that.
Instead, use the marketing funnel to guide your CTAs, creating multiple ones that aim to gradually guide users along so that you can ultimately encourage them to buy.
And get this – we said encourage, not force.
That does not mean that you don’t be assertive when selecting your CTAs – pick one that inspires action, raises urgency, intensifies excitement and garners trust.
It doesn’t always have to be “Buy Now”, “Sign Up”, or even anything “FREE”. Incorporate your brand voice and personality into it, even if it means going borderline wacky if you can.
While SEO can sometimes seem like a huge, complicated mess of a puzzle – slowly assembling each piece step-by-step will ultimately lead you to form a complete SEO strategy that always wins.
Let’s start with user engagement.