Archive by Mike Grindy

Google Index Checker: Keep track of your indexed pages

12Dec

Are you sure that Google has indexed all of the pages on your website? Well, it probably hasn’t. But why should you keep track of your indexed pages and what does this mean for your website’s SEO? The truth is, it doesn’t matter how long you spent creating and optimising the perfect page for Google Search, there will be no chance of receiving traffic from organic search if the page has not been indexed. So it’s important that website owners keep a record of the pages that Google has crawled and indexed (Google might crawl a page but still not index it). However, this is easier said than done because there are currently no SEO tools that gather all the URLs indexed. But all is not lost!! Passion Digital has created it’s very own Google index checker outlined below.

What is Indexation?

Google scans the web using ‘crawlers’ which analyse pages and rank them in SERPs (search engine results pages) in order of their relevance to the user. By crawling the internet, Google also generates a repository of any new web-pages it finds. If Google hasn’t crawled and indexed your site properly, then you could be missing out on relevant traffic, and more importantly, potential customers.

Want to learn more about indexation and SEO, check out out our beginners SEO training course.

How to Check for Indexed Pages

If we open Google Webmaster / Google Index / Index Status, we can see the total number of indexed pages, but Google doesn’t offer the exact URLs for these pages. It should take around 30 minutes for a 500-page site. The more pages your site has, the more time it’ll take.

You’ll need 3 things:

  1. Google Chrome
  2. RDS bar extension for Google Chrome (helps us gather the full URL in the results)
  3. Microsoft Excel

  1. Right-click on the RDS bar icon, and click ‘Options’.

Open Search Tab/Google Search and choose ‘only full URLs’ and click ‘Apply’.

  1. Open https://www.google.co.uk/ in Google Chrome.

Once you are in Google Chrome, we can begin the process of getting almost all the pages from the Google index step-by-step.

Knowing the Target

First of all, we need to set the search settings to the ’10-results’ default option.

Settings/Search settings

  1. Type the following special search query in the browser:

Site: https://passion.digital/

With this query, we’ll get the number of pages indexed by Google. So, we already have an idea of what our target is.

Note that the number of pages showing up could vary slightly over time. This number will never be a fixed one, so we cannot ensure that we’ll be getting 100% of them.

  1. Now, we’ll be doing the same as above for each of the main folders of our site, so we get an accurate figure of how many pages there are in each of them. E.g.

Steps 1 and 2 are required due to the possible result variations that will appear when changing the search settings from 10 results to 100.

If we set the search settings to 100 results, Google will narrow the number of results down showing only relevant results when going through each of the pages in the results. See example below:

1st Page

14th Page

You might see this message appearing at some point if the search settings are set to 100 results:

Collecting the URLS

We need to set the search settings to the “50-results” default option. (Remember not to set the “100 results” option, as Google will reduce the number of results a lot)

Settings/Search settings

Site commands that we’ll be using:

  1. Type the following special search query in the browser to start collecting the pages that are in each folder of your site.

Site: https://passion.digital/blog/

Site: https://passion.digital/services/

  1. This site command will get those pages that are not in any of the main folders that we have previously searched – the orphan pages.

Site: https://passion.digital/ -inurl:/blog/ -inurl:/services/ (…and so on.)

Once we know which site command we should use, we’ll be doing the same process to copy the URLs to an excel document. In the results, the whole URL will be appearing thanks to the RSD extension so then we have just to copy the 50 results to an excel sheet.

Then by filtering the data by colour (our example is Grey), you will be getting just the URLs that you want. Copy-paste them into a new Excel sheet.

Filtered data

See below the template that I’ve been using to collect all the indexed pages

Thank you for reading and hope you have found it interesting.

If you’re interested in learning more SEO practices that could benefit your business, then take a look at our SEO training courses.

7 ways to make Networking Events work for you

06Apr

The Best Digital Marketing Event for SW London

 

Networking events are a strange phenomenon. For many, the idea of standing in a room full of strangers, making small talk and shilling out business cards is very daunting. For others, it’s the perfect way to display their skills and expand their working relationships with others in the industry.

Regardless, these events hold so much opportunity which you need to capitalise on. Where else can you meet like minded individuals who will understand when you talk about the frustration caused by persistent recruiters, or how Instagram still doesn’t have an in-app scheduling function? (Did they not see our Social Media Christmas Wishlist?)

For those who are nervous to get their foot through the door, rest assured that you don’t need a gregarious personality type or a guru-like knowledge of your industry to be a hit at these events. Just follow these 7 easy steps:

The Best Digital Marketing Event for SW London

1. Have a game plan

What are you personally trying to get out of this? Find a new job? Meet your counterpart at a different company? Go with a purpose and you are far more likely to walk away feeling like you achieved something productive.

2. Break the ice by talking about what you have in common

You might think that your joke about obese polar bears is hilarious but people bond most over things they have in common, see the similarity attraction effect. It’s why we all end up talking about the weather, it’s a universal phenomenon we all experience. Hone in on things you have in common and you’ll have no problems making connections.

3. Play jump rope with your comfort zone

Whilst it’s important to get out of your comfort zone and meet new people, you are not going to make the best first impression when you are nervous. If you need to take a breather, maybe a cheeky bit of Dutch courage that’s totally fine. Know that it’s ok not to constantly be switched on all evening.

 4. Know what your USP is

What makes you interesting or memorable? Open with your USP when you meet someone for the first time it will give you something to talk about as well as making you far more memorable in the long run.

5. Pick your networking event wisely.

If you live in a big city there are bound to be a multitude of events you could attend. Picking the right event for your game plan is crucial. If you want to learn more about the industry, then you should head to a discussion panel. If you are looking to meet peers in your industry, an unstructured more social event is for you.

6. Have a couple of questions ready

Prepping questions will certainly pay off over the evening. For example, ‘so how did you get into marketing to start with?’ or ‘have you always been in the sector you’re in at the moment?’ It helps keep the dialog open.

7. Enjoy yourself!

It’s really easy to forget to do this but at the right event you will definitely have a great time. Why not join our digital marketing networking event on the 27th April? Swindig is an unstructured social style networking event and a great way to meet your peers in the industry.

The Best Digital Marketing Event for SW London

 

Getting yourself there is the hardest part but it’s important to remember that networking events are set up with you in mind so. So tell yourself that you’re going to get a lot out of the event and you definitely will.

 

Why you shouldn’t Market to ‘Millennials’

17Mar

Last month we discussed how to market to the millennial generation and the ways in which we can most effectively communicate with this new wave of consumers. This article takes the alternative perspective, inspired by Adam Conover and his talk at Deep Shift marketing conference. The thesis of his talk was essentially:

“Millennials don’t exist and the entire idea of “generations” is unscientific, condescending, and stupid.”

Let’s dive in shall we.

As a young professional, working in digital marketing, myself and most of my colleagues would appear to fully fit the description of ’a Millennial’. I work in an office which has yoga and massages every week, and we have chosen to work in an industry which didn’t even exist when we first entered the education system and we are all active on social media.

Here are three reasons why businesses should think about ‘millennials’ more complexly.

1. Millennial is a paradoxically too broad and too narrow descriptor

Neil Howe and William Strauss are the millionaires who coined the term ‘millennials’ and in their book Millennials Rising: The Next Great Generation (2000) they ascribed 7 traits to this generation: special, sheltered, confident, team-oriented, conventional, pressured, and achieving. Because none of the generations before this one were in any way special or pushed to achieve things,  the baby boomers going to the moon was in no way a team-oriented, achievement. The 7 so called traits of this generation read like a psychic telling you exactly what you want to hear. It’s just a cold reading.

According to a quick google search a millennial is:
a person reaching young adulthood in the early 21st century.

So that pretty much encompasses anyone born in 1978 to 1994? 1996? That is possibly the vaguest definition of a target audience ever.

Moreover the things people generally think about Millennials only really applies to a shockingly small demographic. The Starbucks drinking social media addict is also in the same generation as the American Chinese 35 year old whose family ties got them into Harvard. And also in the same generation as the young girl working 2 jobs to support her family.

The “classic Millennial” that we all picture is a very western centric middle class ideal which isn’t the reality for the vast majority of the world.

 

2. Millennials themselves hate the image our society has thrust upon them

The image that we all have of the “me generation” isn’t exactly flattering. The idea that an entire generation is made of narcissists is unrealistic and also quite insulting. As one Reddit user put it rather succinctly:

 “Honestly, the word millennial has almost become a derogatory word used by people who don’t like things that are “hip”. “Look at those millennials doing all those stupid young people things. ugh millennials.””  TheNamesVox

When you approach your customer base from this perception, you sound condescending and like you are attempting to pander to a stereotype that your base probably doesn’t identify with.

 

3. Generational marketing is made up and inherently useless.

Finally, and the most important aspect to this, generational segmentation is unhelpful. Generations are just one way that society has come up with for dividing people into smaller subsections, one of humanity’s all-time favourite activities.

The question we need to answer is how useful is this particular subsection? Does it really tell us that much about the group of people we have segmented? Or would it be more useful to look at a different method of dividing up society?

For example in email marketing it is far more useful to break down a segment by looking at who opened your email to show you your engaged audience. Having a segment purely based on age makes little to no sense.

Closing thoughts

It is unproductive to assume an entire 20 year age bracket of the population like the same things or behave the same way. The best way to interact with your market is to have a solid understanding of your actual consumer base. Making assumptions based off someone’s age is not going to get great results.

 

Sources:

Millennials Rising: The Next Great Generation (2000)

By Neil Howe, William Strauss

Generation Me (2006)

By Dr. Jean Twenge

Millennials Don’t Exist by Adam Conover at Deep Shift Marketing Conference.

 

How to Market to Millennials

01Mar

According to a Guardian article from March 2016, there are 13.8 million people who would fit under the definition of ‘millennials’ in the United Kingdom alone. This is a massive segment of the market that many businesses are making a priority. So here is our handy guide on how best to communicate with them.

Step 1 – Be Authentic

With the rise of social media and the bar to fame being lowered more and more, ‘normal’ people are finding large audiences. That guy down the road is actually a famous gamer online and has millions of viewers on Twitch. That young girl buying flowers is a massive blogger with a book deal on the way.
This makes the manufactured messages cast down by big brother seem more and more transparent. One of the things millennials prefer above all else is authenticity. Using bloggers and other influencers to help promote your brand will be a much more effective strategy than large scale campaigns when it comes to reaching this demographic. The hard sell is out, your messaging should sound like a recommendation from a fellow consumer. Don’t just shout about how great your product is.

Step 2 – Collaborate with them

We have more powerful tools than ever to connect and interact with our audience, use these to your advantage. Remember, the “Me” generation – as they’re affectionately known – are dying to tell you’re their thoughts and opinions. Connect with your audience on their terms and utilise user-generated content to give your audience a voice.

Step 3 – Make it Mobile

This digital-first generation grew up with keyboards at their fingertips. Ensuring that your brand has a solid mobile presence is vital. Your website should be as easy to read on a tablet or phone as it is on a desktop. Do you have an app where your customers can engage with your content and products? You can always spot a millennial in the wild because they will have their noses buried in their phones, so make sure that your brand is where they are looking.

Step 4 – Swag

One of the best strategies used to connect with millennials is to get them to market on your behalf. A great way to market to them is to reward them for their loyalty. Freebies or discounts for getting their friends to sign up to your service or buy your product.
Last summer saw one of the greatest examples of millennial-centred marketing where popular soft drink maker, Oasis, offered Twitter user, Scott, free drinks if he donned an Oasis branded T-shirt for a month:

This lead to Scott posting selfies daily of him wearing various branded shirts and more people putting their hands up to join in! #HumanOasisAdvert

This campaign is social, interactive, involves great user generated content and made Scott and other consumers into walking billboards for your brand. Tap into this generation’s mind set and you will have a veritable army promoting your brand.


Sources:
Kate Lyons, Generation Y: a guide to a much-maligned demographic, 7 March 2016
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/07/millennials-generation-y-guide-to-much-maligned-demographic
Jennifer Lonoff Schiff, 8 tips for marketing to millennials online, MAY 16, 2016
http://www.cio.com/article/3070766/marketing/8-tips-for-marketing-to-millennials-online.html
Hattie Gladwell, Man’s dreams of free Oasis supply come true after completing 30-day challenge, 9 Sep 2016
http://metro.co.uk/2016/09/09/mans-dreams-of-free-oasis-supply-come-true-after-completing-30-day-challenge-6117976/

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