10 Types Of Visuals That Instantly Improves Your Content Marketing


AdWeek predict that by the end of 2018, 84% of marketing will be visual. This is because humans process visual data faster (up to 60,000 times faster) than text. The largest proportion of our brain is dedicated to processing visual stimuli, and our posterior cortical hot zone, which helps synthesize information into experiences, is closely connected to this primary sense.

Physiologically, our brains prefer visuals to text or audio alone, so as a marketer, visual content should be an area for you to focus your mastery.

Of course, visual content is high on stimulation while being relatively low on richness: an image can tell you of a moment captured in time, and its best in conveying the story of a sentence. But it can’t tell you in-depth information, like how to use visuals in your content marketing strategy. Hence, this blog.

So, we need to combine words with images. We can do this through audio-visual content like video, or by peppering our written content with visuals that augment the message of the piece (essentially creating a comic book effect).

These visuals give you a better chance to use storytelling to land your messages. Stories are remembered up to 22x more than mere facts, so a powerful storytelling tool can be a great asset to your marketing.

Finally, as I keep saying in these articles, emotions rule us. Imagery can be uniquely stirring and evocative, and coupling that power with your message will help your strategy be as affecting and effective as possible. Fortunately for you, there are many visual marketing solutions available.

Where Should I Include My Visuals?

Picture of Where to put the visuals

Left? Right? Bottom? Top?

Good question! The most important image is at the beginning – you need a compelling single image that will provide a hook for your readers and frame the experience they are about to have in a compelling way.
The images also help with skim-reading: they provide vital clues about what the content is saying in different sections, helping determine whether or not the content is worth a second, more detailed pass.

I recommend breaking up your articles with an image every 300-500 words, depending on the total length of the article.

What Types of Visuals Should I Use?

1. Images

Type of Visuals - Images

Let’s start with the obvious. Images are the most common form of visual media. They are also arguably our earliest form of storytelling. We have always liked pictures, from cave paintings to renaissance masterpieces, until today, when we take 1.2 trillion photos a year, on 2.5 billion camera-equipped cell phones.

Images allow us to enrich our content, and articles with images get a 94% boost in performance. That being said, it’s important to ensure images are used purposefully, and chosen to be relevant to the points being made in the text.

Social media has become more image-centric, and virality depends on the ability to make a strong first impression. Your title image will do this most of all.

A word of caution: obvious stock photos put people off. It makes a website feel more generic and unfeeling, and can make content feel like it’s there as placeholder or filler content. If you can’t take your own high quality images, then stock libraries are a really useful source, just avoid the bleached, highly saturated images of women laughing at salad and the like.

Being a good curator of imagery, and carefully selecting pieces, will add a real stamp of quality to the piece. You can get started with any number of copyright free sources of marketing pictures.

2. Videos

Types of Visuals - Videos

Video used to be difficult to produce effectively, as it requires a combination of good quality camera, sound and lighting to deliver a professional feel. The market is addressing this with lower-cost, higher quality gear, and with alternatives such as animations. What’s more, how-to’s can be put together very simply, as can product demonstrations.

While video requires a larger investment of time and energy to produce (unlike images, video HAS to be original), the investment pays off. Moz got a 300% bump in inbound links by including a video. Studies also show that videos give Press Releases 2.5x more views than those without.

It’s important for you to focus on viewer’s wants and needs when creating video. Video is also a way for you to harness personality to promote your brand. If you have relaxed, charismatic experts in your workspace, putting them in front of a camera can build bridges and make connections between your audience and your company.

Video allows you to show, not tell, and that’s the golden rule of storytelling.

3. GIFs

Types of Visuals - Gif

GIFs are a fun and easy way to create a more entertaining, human and personal touch to your writing. GIFs capture emotions and moments from pop culture that people can instantly connect with. Denny’s has used GIFs to great effect on tumblr, creating original pieces that have high virality.

Type of Visuals - Gif

That said, throwing GIFs around willy nilly will result in your post looking like a 90s geocities page – which can undermine the professional and high-quality nature of the rest of your content.

Use GIFs sparingly and deploy them at the right times, and your posts will enjoy greater engagement.

4. Memes

Types of Visuals - Memes

Memes have become an inescapable part of our culture, and they exist in pretty much every possible variation, helping people with niche interests share humour around the jobs they work in. As a content marketer, The Incumbent Agency frequently makes me laugh on Instagram, with their all-too-real burns on working in the creative industries. One of the key things that make a good meme is an inside joke quality.

Memes are a way for you to frame real challenges in humorous ways, helping to create a sense of empathy and personal connection. They lighten the mood, and they follow patterns that you can replicate with original content relevant to your field. Here are 100 to get you started.

Memes are popular, and you can even use them to link to your articles on sites like Imgur and Tumblr, helping you generate traffic and make your content more shareable.

5. Data Visualizations and Graphical Data

Types of Visual - Data Visualizations and Graphical Data

Math is hard to grasp, and turns a lot of people off. Explaining data based research, where there are complex relationships between many pieces of information that have been understood only through the complex application for formulae… well, yeah. Now we’re all bored. Which is a shame, because data is essential to business success, and Big Data is Big Business.

Fortunately, the realm of data visualization is burgeoning right now as a practical way to break up text and easily convey the hard data from research in a more accessible way. Visual aids can ‘shortcut’ the comprehension stage when readers try and process data.

At the entry-level, data visualisation includes things like charts, maps, diagrams, and graphs, that illustrate the point you are trying to make.

Just so you know, Creative Bloq has created a great list of tools you can use to create these visualisations. Have fun exploring!

6. Screenshots

Types of visuals - Screenshots

Screenshots are a really great way of explaining processes to people, illustrating the actions you want them to take during things like tutorials and guides. That’s a great example of how a single image can save you a lot of work. By showing people what you’re seeing, and what they should see.

I personally use Greenshot when taking a screenshot. I find it particularly useful when as it has an intuitive interface, lots of features, extendable through plugins, and a built-in image editor for quick touch ups- nearly an all-in-one package. Allow me to show you a screenshot I took using the tool.

Rankreveal Blog Screenshot

A screenshot of Rank reveal’s blog. Have you read through the articles?

Screenshots can essentially create a step by step slide show of a helpful procedure, much more clearly than trying to explain it long hand. Have you ever had to explain to a parent how to change something on their computer over the phone? Would you ever choose to read a transcript of that intensely annoying conversation? Exactly – screenshots are your savior.

7. Infographics

Types of Visual - Infographics

Back in 2012, infographics were going to be the answer to everything. Now, some leading lights in online marketing believe they’ve had their time, and bad examples have undermined the potential of the medium after a promising start.

An infographic can’t just be throwing your written information onto an image background. Neither can it be creating a compelling image that doesn’t tell people anything nuanced.

The best time to use an infographic is when you are making an argument that comes from bringing together a wide range of different data points. This way, you can summarize the data visually, storify the journey you went on connecting the dots, and simplify the complex conclusion into a go-home that focuses on the impact.


An example of infographic extracted from SEOPressor’s blog post: https://seopressor.com/blog/the-10-qualities-of-a-good-inbound-marketer/

Infographics are a useful asset across many different touch points, performing well in emails, on social media, and in blog posts.

Just remember, you have to simplify the process to strengthen the argument. Here is an infographic of infographics to help you digest the major trends and themes.

8. Drawings and Comics

Types of visuals - Drawings and Comics

Comics narrativize a moment or situation in a fun visual shorthand, often in a comical manner. Dilbert was probably the first to breakthrough hit of short comics that attempted to satirize work and life, and has bred a whole genre of specialist interest comics such as XKCD, Cyanide and Happiness, The Oatmeal, and Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal. These comics explore niche topics such as maths, philosophy, history, biology and more. They make factoids easy to digest and use the power of surprise to seed deeper meaning with their readers.

You can do the same, by employing comics as a way to convey your argument. Drawings and illustrations take time and talent to get good at, but if you have a concept and simply need the execution, you can even get original sketches created on websites like Fiverr.
Illustrations can allow you to quickly storify the benefits of your products, the challenges you can help clients overcome, and more.

9. E-books

Types of Visuals- Ebooks

An E-Book, while not limited to being solely a visual piece of material, will greatly benefit from having a primarily visual design. Presentation aids the absorption of the material, and makes a great first impression at the same time.

Amazon makes it as easy as possible for you to publish an E-book, which gives you an opportunity to create a monetized product from your existing knowledge. What’s more, E-Books can drastically improve your brand image and credibility, by establishing you as an authority in your field.

Publishing a book is no easy task, but having a book cover, and a visual design to the book, will greatly improve how professional the book appears, and by extension, how professional you and your brand appear. When done right, an E-book that has a genuine value proposition for the reader can transform your business.


Types of Visuals - Quotes

Pull quotes can give you a great way to break up your text, peppering it with hooks that encourage people to read further and find the broader context and value of the excerpt. That said, you can boost your quotes to the next level by giving them a visual component. This is easily achieved with any number of apps.

Framing your quotes with beautiful imagery, or even using an app like Legend to create animated text to further draw the eye. These pull quotes can also have a second life as shareable material that can help you and others promote the article itself.

Pulling out the most valuable points and presenting them in a visual format can help you deliver value even to those who are just skim reading, and earn trust and loyalty from them in the process.

Build Out Your Visual Content

Picture of Build out your visual content

Remember, Carl Sagan once said, “Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs… A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.”

Writing will never disappear. But Sagan himself worked in a visual medium – TV. Nowadays, the internet is becoming a far more visual place, and you need to keep pace with that change if your content strategy is to find success.

Do you have visual content marketing strategies to share? Talk about them in the comments section below! Have you found one particular approach is more successful than the others? Give our other reads the heads up.

Updated: 18/1/18

5 Steps SEO Keyword Research Helps Google Ranking

5 Steps SEO Keyword Research Helps Google Ranking

Keywords are one of the most fundamental part of marketing your business online. It is through keywords that people searching for your service can find you. It is also through keywords that you can get your business on the first page of Google ranking. Keywords are basically the building blocks of your business. It is the very foundation of SEO.

Search engine optimization, or SEO, takes careful thoughts and is a long-term process. The impact of this investment on your business growth makes it well worth your time. Maybe you’ve even wondered too; “Is first-page ranking even possible today?”

It’s not impossible. Ranking for the right keywords can make or break your website. By researching your market’s keyword demand, you can not only learn which terms and phrases to target with SEO, but also learn more about your customers as a whole.

Why Is SEO Keyword Research Important?

Everytime when someone does a search, search engines must decide which results to display among the hundreds of thousands possible pages. It’s up to the search engine algorithms to determine the best and most relevant matches for every single search.

Not only is it important to rank on the first page of search engine results page (SERP) for relevant search terms, but it’s equally important to rank in the top positions of the first page. Here’s a breakdown of average traffic percentages by Google result ranking for results 1-15 as explained by Chitika.

Google Result Page Rank and Average Traffic Share by Chitika

As you can see, the closer you are to the top of Google ranking for relevant search terms, the higher the traffic (and potential sales) you’ll obtain. The difference in just a few positions can represent a significant drop in your traffic in the long term.

With that in mind, let’s look at 5 steps SEO keyword research helps Google ranking.

1. Know Your Audiences

Buyer Persona - Know Your Audience

It’s not always about getting visitors to your site, but getting the right kind of visitors.

To know which keywords to focus on, you must first know who your audience is when they’re searching online for your products or services.

One of the best ways to start is by developing specific “buyer personas” that represent the main demographics you intend to target with your content. Rather than making assumptions or wild guesses about your audience’s needs, this method will force you to sketch out a portrait of your “average” customer, including their basic information, disposition, interests, family life, professional life, wants and needs. Treat it as if you’re developing a fictional character.

If you haven’t created buyer personas for your audiences, now is the time to do so. Create at least two buyer personas for your main targeted audiences; primary audience and secondary audiences.

By knowing who you want to talk to, you can craft a better approach. Who are they? What do they need? What keeps them up at night? What do they want most? Understanding the important drivers behind their actions allows you to form a stronger relationship through creating content that is important and valuable to them.

2. Target Your Keywords

Target Your Keyword

Target the right keywords for Google AND your Readers.

Once you have a clear idea of exactly who your customers are, it’s time to do SEO keyword research and find keyword phrases that will be of interest to searches. There are many SEO tools that can help with your keyword research.

Google even shows you the most frequently searched terms when you start typing in search keywords in the query box.

No matter which keyword research tool you use, chances are the tool has a way for you to not only find keyword ideas and variations to target but also allow you to analyze the competitiveness of the keywords you’re trying to rank for. Your goal is to identify keywords that have a relatively high search volume but are less competitive.

Google Keyword Planner makes it easy to see whether a keyword you’re evaluating has a lot of competition (High) or if it’s going to be a little easier for you to rank for because the competition is less (Medium and Low).

Google Adwords Competition Level

Search volume is also a crucial piece of data to look at when selecting keywords.

Sure. You could rank on page one of Google for a keyword, but if only 25 people search for that keyword each month, you probably won’t go very far. Instead, look for search volumes that are at least high enough to make the SEO keyword effort worth it.

After you’ve done your initial keyword research, you’ll want to refine it to include long-tail keywords and semantic terms. When selecting keywords, think “semantically”. Google’s RankBrain is smart enough to recognize synonyms and other ways of saying certain words or phrases. You typically only want to use your targeted keywords two or three times on a page. These will help ensure that you’re writing topically comprehensive content, identify user intent and create resources that answer common queries.

3. Analyze Competitor’s Winning SEO Keywords

SEO is a winner takes it all game. The whole point of SEO is to beat your competitors on search engine results. But before you can create a plan to outrank your competition, you need to find out who your competitors are and how they rank for the keywords you are targeting.

One such keyword research tool that lets you know what keywords you already rank for is RankReveal. RankReveal is a tracking software that uses a technique known as “Reverse Rank Tracking”.

RankReveal Banner

You start by entering the URL of the website you’d like to track, and follow up by tossing in a few keywords that are relevant to your site. Once RankReveal understands the intent of your keywords, it will start tracking which keyword your website is ranking for in Google.

WhoRanksWhat Landing Page

Head over to WhoRanksWhat today and be amazed by its ability!

Another good news is they have recently launched another FREE tool named WhoRanksWhat that enables you to find out your current ranking keywords and optimize your content based on the data. Their ever expanding keywords database is spanning over 17 million keywords from 101 million webpages. There goes your chance to analyze your competitors winning SEO keywords!

4. Can You Rank For Special Features?

I’m sure you’ve noticed that Google has added some helpful features to the top of their Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Those are known as instant answers or answer box, featured snippets, reviews and videos that often show up at the top of search pages on Google.

Google's Answer Box

An answer box result is the answer provided for someone seeking the answer to a question or topic; typically following a how/what structure.

The Answer Box is a unique SERP result that is powered by Google’s knowledge graph or taken from a site that provides an answer to a question. Knowledge Graph made search results more relevant by understanding entities and the nuances in their meaning. This was a huge shift in search, requiring a new way to execute SEO keyword research.

Google Knowledge Graph Seopressor’s Blog: 9 Simple Steps To Increase Your Domain Authority

An example of Google’s knowledge graph taken from Seopressor’s Blog: 9 Simple Steps To Increase Your Domain Authority

Typically, these instant answers are a box with a text answer and a source URL. To increase our chances of being selected for a featured snippet, we want to take multi-pronged approach that includes:

  • Content that clearly answers the question
  • Clean code and tagging that Google easily understands
  • Positive user engagement signals

Getting a page listed in Google’s Knowledge graph should be a main goal of your SEO and keyword efforts.

5. Put Keywords In Right Places

Now that you’ve got your basic keyword research started, you need to know where to put these keywords on your website.

Keyword Stuffing

Never encourage keyword stuffing.

Just throwing a keyword on a page a dozen times won’t do much signal that your page is useful and relevant to a user’s search. You need to use your keywords in the right way, in the right places to show search engines that your website can help a searcher achieve their goal. Let’s go over the 4 main parts.

1. Page Title

The title tag is a great place to use your keyword phrases. It’s the first place that Google looks for for keywords. Page titles are displayed at the top of web browsers and on search engine result pages.

2. URL

The structure and words you use in your URLs are very important. Optimized URLs are vital for search engines and human usability, and play a big part in your SEO. Use keywords in your URL to tell readers how relevant the page is to a keyword and what sort of content they should expect to find on the page.

3. Page Content

Your page content is the backbone of your site, and theoretically the whole reason your page exists in the first page. Your content also needs to be unique and high quality. Duplicating causes penalty and keep you from ranking in search results. You also need to proofread your content as spelling, grammar and vocabulary mistakes make your site look bad and cause a high bounce rate.

4. Meta Descriptions

Meta descriptions aren’t used as a ranking factor by search engines, but you can still use your keyword here to improve your SEO. Search engines combine meta descriptions with title tags and URLs to create a page’s search snippet.

The 4 elements mentioned above won’t individually make or break your SEO efforts – search engines look at more than 200 factors when ranking websites in search results. However, including your keywords in the right places will give them a strong hint that your page is relevant to a particular topic and will provide value to a searcher.

Conclusion: See You At The Top!

Rollercoaster See You At The Top!

Keep going with these SEO efforts and you’ll reach the top eventually!

The good news is that after completing your keyword research and slowly implementing your chosen keywords throughout your site, Google should have a better understanding of what your content is all about so it can better match you to the correct searches.

Keep in mind though that SEO keyword research is an ongoing process. It takes time and patience to research and implement your keywords and more time for Google to pick up these changes. SEO changes, search engine algorithms changes, so does the terms your customers use, so make sure you routinely go over your keyword research to make sure it is up-to-date and accurate.

Do you have any SEO keyword research tips that you’ll like to share? What are your favourite keyword research tools? Comment below and get the conversation going!

Updated: 3/1/18

6 Different Ways To Create Anchor Text

Picture of 6 different ways to create anchor text

The Internet is an overwhelming place to be in.

Imagine going to a restaurant, reaching out for the menu and seeing a variety of food to choose from that looks like this:

  • A burger page with 18 different burgers
  • A salad page with 10 side salads and 10 dinner salads
  • A sandwich page with just about every kind of sandwich you can think of
  • Also, a random page with just about everything; fish, meat, vegetables

Now, after spending about 1 hour pondering at all the options you’re presented with, you often end up going to the first one that caught your eye. Or, if it is stated which ones are the “best choice”, I might choose one of those.

In another way, the Internet is like the restaurant menu – it has millions of clothing store sites, tons of content marketing sites, several thousand food delivery services and the list can go on and on.

So, how is it that anyone ever makes their decision on which site to select?

Well, when you do a Google search for something like “content marketing services,” like most people you will click on the first few sites that appears on the first page of search engine result page. Most people assume that the first sites they see are the most credible.

But why? Because of search engine optimization.

You see, search engines order their database of content based on complex algorithms that take into account hundred of different factors. But of these many factors, one of the important factor is the number of links that a website has to it.

Today, we’re diving into one of the most fundamental aspects of SEO: the anchor text that is used in links. Let’s get started.

What is Anchor Text and Why Is It Important?

Picture of What is anchor text and why is it important?

Anchor Text is quite simply the visible, clickable text that links to another piece of content or page. In modern browsers, it is often blue and underlined, “such as this link to Rank Reveal’s homepage.” Rank Reveal’s homepage is the anchor text. You can create it using this simple HTML code:

    <a href="http://www.example.com">Example Anchor Text</a>

As long as backlinks are an important SEO ranking factor, anchor text is going to play a significant role. It’s added for the benefit of search engines, so that they can determine what the “linked-to-page” is about. In other words, the keywords in an anchor text are one of the many signals search engines use to determine the topic of a web page.

In the earlier days of SEO, a site’s rankings in search results were determined not only by the number of links pointing to that site, but also by the anchor text of those links. Google, being unable to manually check what every page is about, relied on those signals. Later on, just like many other past SEO techniques, this one became abused and resulted in SEO’s creating links, featuring targeted anchor texts on a commercial scale.

The 6 Types Of Anchor Text

Optimizing your anchor texts involves having a clear understanding of the various types of anchors. Here are 6 types of anchor text that you may opt to use:

1. Branded Anchor Text

Branded anchors are those anchor text that includes the actual brand name of the business as the link’s text. It is great for building authority within Google and your anchor text profile should predominantly consist of branded and brand variation anchors.

Sentence Sample: “Over at SEOPressor you can learn more about search engine optimization.”

Picture of Branded Anchor Text

Branded anchor text by madlemmings.com on SEOPressor.

In other words, if a link from another site points to SEOPressor with the anchor text SEOPressor, that is a branded link. The reason branded anchors are preferable is because they are not seen as an attempt to manipulate Google, especially since most sites easily rank for their brand names already. Moreover, mentioning a brand by name seems very natural as it is commonly done by people when writing reviews, journalists or people citing sources.

Usage Percentage: 50%

2. Generic Anchors

A “Generic” is just that: it does not contain keywords, branding, or the URL itself. These anchors are typically calls-to-action (CTAs) like:

  • Click here
  • Head Over To
  • Check This Site Out
  • Read This Here

Sentence Sample: “Head over to Rank Reveal if you are looking for more SEO information.” – “Head over to” is the generic anchor text.

Picture of Generic Anchors

As seen on one of my recent blog, “Why is SEO important for your business in 2017 and 2018.”

Usage Percentage: 5%

3. Naked URL Anchor Text

Any anchor that uses a raw URL is considered a “naked” link. It points directly to your website, but the link itself is the anchor text.

Sentence Example: Remember to check out http://blog.rankreveal.com if you’re interested in SEO.

Picture of Naked URL Anchor Text

These types of links are common in a bio, a source list, or even on resource pages.

Like branded and partial brand anchors, naked URL links should make up the majority of your anchor text profile.

Usage Percentage: 20%

4. Exact Match Anchor Text

Exact match anchor text is what it sounds like: the anchor text matches exactly the keyword you want to rank for.

Picture of Exact Match Anchor Text

Exact Match means clicking on this link on “B2B marketing” will lead to…

Picture of Exact Match Anchor Text

…this. A B2B Marketing Blog, matching the exact keywords.

It is the most important type of anchor text as it has the power to improve your ranking. However, you should always exercise caution when using exact match anchors as they could be the reason on why you get penalized. For instance, trying to rank for “content marketing” and your anchor text is also “content marketing”, you’re running a risk of landing yourself a penalty.

Usage Percentage: 1-2%

5. Partial Match Anchor Text

This is a much more common type of anchor text. For example, a link with “creative content marketing strategies” as the anchor text linking to a page about content marketing. Note that content marketing is still part of the anchor text, but not the whole phrase.

Picture of Partial Match Anchor Text

Despite the phrase, the key focus here is “mobile friendliness”. Clicking it then leads to…

Picture of Partial Match Anchor Text

An article about Google’s mobile-friendly algorithm boost, partially matching the anchor text.

As with exact match, you want to make sure that you do not abuse the usage of partial match anchors either. For both exact and partial match, no one phrase or term should make up more than 5% of your total links.

Usage Percentage: 1-5%

6. Image and ‘alt’ Anchor Text

The use of images in website contents are highly acclaimed today. It is an attribute added to pictures that describes what they portray in words. It also helps to increase the interaction of the use with the content. When you use an image as a link to another location, you also provide a relevant ‘alt’ tag for the image. Search engines read this ‘alt’ attribute as the anchor text.
The alt text appears in a blank box that would normally contain the image.

Picture of Image and alt Anchor Text

The alt text appears in a blank box that would normally contain the image.

It is also useful to keep your focal keywords in mind when writing the descriptions.

Usage Percentage: It is recommended to use about 8 words in your alt tag, as being an adequate amount to provide a basic description of your image.

Tips To Consider When Using Anchor Text

Picture of Tips to consider when using anchor text

If you are a regular visitor of Rank Reveal, you will notice that I frequently link back to my older posts using anchor text.

If you are a regular visitor of Rank Reveal, you will notice that I frequently link back to my older posts using anchor text.

So, what is the key to a good anchor text? There are a few and fairly simple to make out from the types above.

1. Concise

SEO friendly anchor text is brief and straight to the point. A long sentence that links to another page does not work well: a couple of keywords or a phrase is the best. Simple and natural is ideal. Page titles are the on exception to this rule as they are often a longer phrase.

2. Diverse

If every link to your site contains the same anchor text, search engines might view this as suspicious, since it could be a sign that you’ve paid people to link to you. It’s a good idea to use a variety of different types of anchor text in links to your site, including branded links, generic links, naked URL links, exact match links, or even partial match links.

Ideally, the anchor text you use should be whatever provides the most value to a site’s user and to people who are using search engines to find information. If you can make sure the links you create to your site are helping people find what they need and accomplish their goals, you and Google will be on the same page. At the same time, your search rankings will benefit too.

3. Relevance

While including targeted keywords in the anchor text of links to your site can help improve search rankings, that doesn’t mean you should cram in as many keywords as possible. Don’t even think about placing these links on sites or pages that does not make sense.

Always make sure these links are used in a way that is relevant to the content of the pages that are linking to your site, and use natural language rather than unwieldy phrases built around keywords you want to target.

Don’t Overdo It

GIf Of Don't Overdo it - anchor text

Too much of a good thing is a bad thing. This is true in life, and in SEO. Too much SEO can cause over-optimization.

Matt Cutts, the then head of Google’s web spam team once said, “ The objective is not to make your links look natural; the objective is that your links are natural.” Poorly selected anchor texts are a pretty easy way to spot an unnatural link profile, which is not something you want your site to be known for.

Unnatural links, even from high authority sites, can harm your rankings. Due to the abuse by SEO’s and webmasters, Google began penalizing sites that used keywords as anchor texts too often, since it is seen as a clear attempt to manipulate rankings.

One final reminder, focus on building your links organically by using quality contents and a diverse range of anchor texts with proper co-citation and co-occurence. This will help you optimize your link profile and make it almost impossible for Google to penalize you.

Good Luck and Anchor Away!

Do you have any tips or tricks for anchor text? How do you use these links to increase your traffic? Feel free to share your stories in the comments below!

Updated: 21/12/17

Organic vs Paid Search: Learn The Difference

Picture of Organic vs Paid Search: Learn the Difference

In this era of globalization, search engines have completely shaped the world of internet, our lifestyle, habits and even the way we do our businesses. The phrase “Go Google it” has become a solution to so many problems. Whether you’re looking at the reviews for the next restaurant you plan to dine at or how to change car tyres, this sentence has certainly became our daily mantra.

Google, in all its tech glory, represents two completely different, yet equally valuable traffic sources to inbound marketers: organic search and paid search. The methods for gaining traffic from these two sources are known as search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) respectively.

So back to our main topic, what’s the difference between organic and paid search results? Telling you their primary differences, benefits, drawbacks and when it is best to use them will be my job today.

Let’s begin!

Organic vs. Paid Search: Understanding the Basics

First and foremost, here is what it looks like on an average search result.

A normal search on Google looks like this.

What is Organic Search?

Organic search results is also known as natural search results. Marketers use various SEO tactics to get higher rankings in search engine result pages (SERPs). Your organic traffic can come from search results for keyword phrases, from your blog visits or from social media posts that drive visitors back to your website or landing page.

Organic Search Example- Christmas Presents

This is a list of organic search.

Your goal is to make your site be on the first page and then move into the top three rankings for specific keywords. These appear purely based on the quality and content of the page. Remember, organic search result comes from the algorithm of the search engine.

What is Paid Search?

Paid search accounts are those that companies have paid to appear on the top of search results. It is also commonly known as Pay Per Click (PPC) advertisement.

Why is it named “pay per click”? Because you have to pay for every user who clicks on the ad you are promoting. Basically, you have to pay a certain amount to display the ads in when searches enter a specific keyword in the search box of the search engine.

Paid Search Examples - Christmas Gifts

These paid ads are usually displayed either on the top or to the right of the organic search results.

These paid ads are usually displayed either on the top or to the right of the organic search results.

The placement of the paid ads is decided by means of bidding and quality score. The fees you pay for such advertisements depend on the number of clicks or views received by your ads. Rather than having to wait patiently for your SEO to build up, you can pay for the chance to get seen on the first page of Google immediately.

Benefits of Organic Search

1. Trust and Authority

When your site shows up in an organic search, you are perceived as having a higher degree of authority, authenticity and credibility.

2. Organic Visibility

Sustainable too. That’s an important SEO advantage, results are slow but steady and it grows over time. When you honor your human audience, wide fluctuations in visibility are rare. Remember, slow and steady wins the race.

3. Cost Effective

If a company adopts effective organic SEO strategies over time, the cost is minimal or none and becomes less and less instead of more.

4. Increased Conversion Rate

Picture of Increased Conversion Rate

Increase your conversion rate using SEO today!

Being organically ranked at top positions triggers your website’s conversion rate. This further translates into more sales, widens customer base and gives more exposure to your business in manifold ways.

5. Triggers ROI

Websites which have better click through rate generate more sales and eventually lead to a better Return on Investment (ROI). The cost and benefit analysis of any business is also reflective that organic search results are efficient in minimizing the cost and maximizing the return.

Drawbacks Of Organic Search

1. Long and Difficult Process

Attaining a first page ranking is a long and difficult process. While PPC is an expensive sprint, organic marketing is a patience-testing marathon. While there is no direct financial cost, you must be willing to devote a lot of time and energy to developing a successful organic SEO campaign. And yes, time is money.

2. Results Not Guaranteed

Truth to be told, there can be no guaranteed results as search engines themselves decides the ranking of sites.

3. Changes Required

At times, there are certain changes required to be made on your websites. These changes tend to be invisible to visitors. If you have invested time and money in building an unfriendly website for search engines, then the process can be costly as well as time consuming. Some of the changes required to your website under such circumstances may be – navigation, design and site’s copy.

Benefits of Paid Search

1. Buy Qualified Traffic

Paid search results are immediate and deliver highly targeted, motivated traffic. These visitors are actively looking for the products or service you have to offer.

2. Targeted Website Traffic

All paid search results ad campaigns allow you to target specific subsets of searches, especially ad retargeting, which displays your ad to someone who recently visited your website.

3. Measurable ROI

Measurable ROI in Paid Search

This is one of the major advantages of paid search results. By using PPC analytics, you can easily measure your PPC campaign results for return on investment and immediately determine what is working and not working.

4. Niche Market Strategy

The advantage of niche marketing is that you can target your PPC advertising campaign to reach specific niche markets, days of the week, times of the day, and target specific cities or countries.

5. Full Control

You are always in full control of all aspects of your pay per click advertising management campaign and your PPC costs.

Drawbacks of Paid Search

1. Temporary Listing Results

The main disadvantage of pay per click advertising is that the moment a specified budget runs out, your listing will disappear.

2. Fewer Clicks Than Organic

Studies shows that on average, about 85% of online searches will click on organic listings first and only 10-15% will click on PPC sponsored ad.

3. Increasing PPC Advertising Costs

Picture of Increasing PPC Advertising Costs

Another disadvantage is that PPC advertising bids can become quite expensive especially if you get into a bidding war with a competitor or your are in a competitive industry to start with.

When Is It Best To Use Organic Search?

So, when should you use SEO techniques? Below are some circumstances when SEO would prove highly beneficial for your business.

1. When consistent results are desired

SEO has a relatively long gestation period. Getting to the first page of search engine results won’t happen overnight. Getting to the top of the SERPs takes time. However, once your website gets there via SEO, you will enjoy sustained traffic.

Also, if you keep up with your SEO campaign, working to maintain and improve results, you can stay on top for a long time and reap long-term benefits.

2. When you wish to build a site with authority

Building an authority site

An authority website is an established resource center for a particular niche. It is people’s “go to” website whenever members of that niche need certain information. An authority website, once it gets going, will be able to generate lots of traffic based on URL recall alone.

The best way to establish an authority website is by sustainably generating traffic to your pages. Eventually, build up a reputation until it becomes popular enough to dominate its market. Plan your SEO strategies smartly.

3. When you want to increase the value of your website

Websites are virtual real estates. There are many factors that can contribute to increasing its value. Among them are amount of traffic generated, consistency of traffic generated, page rank, search engine rankings over a period of time, link popularity and the like. All of these fall in the realm of SEO.

When Is It Best To Use Paid Search?

Now that you know when you should use organic search, what about paid search? Let’s see.

1. When immediate results are desired

Yes, PPC deliver results fast. Very fast in fact. You can count the minutes before a rush of visitors come cascading to your pages. This is because the moment your PPC campaign is approved, your ads will immediately be displayed for millions to see. The traffic will almost be instantaneous.

Hence, PPC works amazingly well with product launches, affiliate marketing involving high converting offers, joint venture projects, seasonal promotions, and analogous online business campaigns.

2. When promoting a time-sensitive offer

Marketing products, services or events with an expiration date is always a race against time. Often, the long gestation period of SEO campaigns would produce belated results. For these time sensitive offers, the effectiveness of PPC marketing would be a life-saver.

Promoting an offer that will end in 3 days? No problem! PPC can deliver the traffic you need in a matter of minutes.

3. When highly targeted traffic is sought

Unlike SEO, PPC marketing will allow you to narrow down your prospects based on their demographic data. Many PPC platforms, like social media sites, allow you to promote to the age range, gender, income bracket, education level, and even marital status of the people who will be able to view your ad.

Popular social media sites like Facebook also allow you to target people based on their hobbies. These make PPC a powerful way of reaching the narrow band of people your business needs, and leading them to your web pages.

The Bottom Line: Which Should I Focus On?

Organic vs Paid Search?

The truth is, an effective marketing campaign should include a bit of both strategies.

“Which” is a matter of opinion, of course. The best approach for you depends largely upon the type of business you have, the objectives of your web presence and your budget.

For a short-term, a paid search campaign can give your business a quick boost, helping you gain exposure to customers searching for the relevant keywords in your campaign; however, sometimes consumers don’t trust—or even look at—paid ads. Using organic search methods, which consumers tend to see as trustworthy, will help drive traffic and increase revenue over the long haul, and solidify your position as a leader and authority in your niche.

Learning new marketing techniques isn’t difficult. Unlike teaching an old dog new tricks, which often seems impossible to do, using methods like organic search and paid search takes some getting used to. But once you’ve committed yourself to the process, you’ll see the outcomes, and sing its praises. Before I end my post, I’d like to share another related write up that I found to be interesting: SEO vs PPC: Which Is Better For Your Business.

If you’ve had experiences with either organic vs paid search, do let me know in the comments section below. Let’s keep the conversation going!

Updated: 12/12/17

15 Types of Bloggers: Can You Identify Yourself?

Feature image of 15 types of bloggers can you identify yourself?

Blogging has come a long way since the last decade. Over the years, it went from pure hobby to a respectable career. Now? A worldwide phenomenon.

Like most new innovations on the Internet, many entrepreneurs saw a marketing potential in having a blog, and blogging took off from there. With millions of bloggers around, there are a certain number qualities that can be seen in them. This blogger right here aims to break down the different types of “personalities” you may have stumbled upon.

Have fun reading!

What is Blogging?

Blogging is a term taken from ‘weblog’. Blogging is a part of sharing your knowledge in which you not only share your perception, but readers can also comment and participate in the discussions made on the blog. Blogs provide information on a particular issue, event, or subject.

A successful blog is the result of a lot of blood and sweat by the blogger(s) who run it. The extent of its success depends on the blog’s style, its content, its focus on its core subject matter, as well as its marketing and publicity.

Now that you know the definition, let’s dive straight to the types of bloggers, shall we?

Types Of Bloggers

#1) The SEO Fanatic

Picture of an SEO Fanatic brain

What goes in the minds of an SEO Fanatic.

Are they writing to you? Yes, of course. On the other hand, you can catch the SEO fanatic constantly having an “affair” with Google. Oh, would you just look at how passionate they appear to be trying to rank well in organic search (Guilty as charged!).

Time after time, they vow to share their voice with a larger audience and increase their authority on a given topic. To these bloggers,
improving their SEO
means that their website is more likely to be found by Internet users and customers compared to their competition. It’s something everybody wants right?

Pros: Search engine optimization done right can result in massive traffic to your site and help with business growth.

Cons: Stuffing an article with keywords may trigger Google to see it as unoriginal and repetitive. So, the risk of being penalized is always present.

#2) The Marketing Guru

Picture of of marketing expert

The marketing guru knows what combination of words can psychologically induce you to buy a product. Scary yet amazing at the same time right? These bloggers are often found in the money-making online niche and simply know how to promote themselves and products.

Needless to say, the blogs of these gurus are read by millions of readers worldwide. Influencers that you can learn from are namely Seth Godin, Neil Patel, or Guy Kawasaki, just to name a few.

Pros: If you’re an expert marketer, you stand a higher chance to make a great deal of money online. In most cases, they are able to showcase excellence in the marketing of an average product.

Cons: If you’re the type that is constantly marketing and selling, people will grow weary of you and you might lose potential business. Once a customer feels that you see them only as a sales opportunity, they will be hesitant to purchase from you. Then again, smart marketers know how to avoid this perception from occurring.

#3) The Inspirator

Picture of Gary Vaynerchuk Quote

One of the most inspirational bloggers, Gary Vaynerchuk.

If you’ve been around long enough, you’ll notice that the blogosphere is full of inspiring people and stories. Stories about losing their job and resorting to blogging. Success stories of bloggers making five figures a month and traveling the world.

This is such a vast category because inspirations come in many different forms of different sources. Sometimes the people inspire us, other times the content does. I’ve come to think that blogging is a communication packed with inspiration. Aren’t we living in such a wonderful world?

Pros: More often than not, everyone loves to be inspired or rather needs inspiration to lead their daily lives. Only the good comes from it – successfully changing lives and the world.

Cons: There isn’t much to say here. The only con would be if you inspired others to live incorrectly instead.

#4) The Spammer

Spammer is also known as Sploggers. If you ask me, spam is any comment on my blog that doesn’t ask for a relevant question. It also doesn’t contribute a relevant thought or compliment to the article. Comment spam is annoying, disappointing part of life online. As your blog grows, comment spam becomes a daily hassle and it’s inevitable.

Picture of a spam message from Google+

See, this is a spammer.

Picture of Genuine Comment on SEOPressor

Instead of spamming, you can try doing it like Vishwajeet!

The picture above is a difference between an irrelevant spam and an excited, engaged reader who enjoys your writing. Us as bloggers, should all learn from Vishwajeet, leaving true and genuine comments.

Most of the time, spammers will covertly use your comment area as a platform to advertise their blogs and products. A blog’s commenting feature should only be used to add value to the post.

Always remember, quality is better than quantity.

Pros: It can work to get sploggers more traffic and a whole lot of money too! Talk about being unethical!

Cons: Instead of earning a link by creating valuable content, you just leave a comment containing a link to whatever you want to promote. Long story short, it gives Google and your readers a reason to dislike you.

#5) The Niche Blogger

Instead of merely focusing on broad topics, niche bloggers tend to post specific stuff. Some of the niche blogs might be on food blogging, training programmes and much more. These bloggers usually pick topics that appeal to them and are passionate about. By choosing your niche of interest, you’ll be able to differentiate your blog from your competitor.

Picture of Jamie Oliver Blog - Super Food Family Classics

Best example of a good niche blog – Jamie Oliver, with interesting food recipes and cooking ideas.

Pros: You’ll obtain a whole bunch of dedicated readers. People who are interested in your subject are very likely to return to you. You’ll be easily remembered. Rejoice!

Cons: Needless to say, you are only aiming at a small number of audience. Small audience = lower potential “customers”. It can also be harder to get other sites to link to you thus, taking a longer time to start getting search traffic.

#6) The Guest

Picture of guest-bloggers monkey

Guests are always seen writing for other blogs. In short, they have a habit of guest posting. You’ve seen it don’t you. You’ll read three articles on three different blogs only to see they were actually by the same author!

Guests feel at home on other blogs that have more influence than their own. There is certainly something warm and cozy about traffic spikes.

Pros: So long as you’re working with high-quality guest blogs, guest posting is good! Inbound links for SEO, increased traffic, valuable connections. What more can you ask for?

Cons: This applies if you’re guest posting on a relatively dead blog. You’ll find yourself constantly refreshing the page to see if there’s any action – but nothing. You’ll be awaiting incoming traffic on your own blog – nothing either. There goes your hopes.

#7) The Host

Picture of Barack Obama hosting White House Senate Dinner

Ex-President Barack Obama hosting the White House State Dinner.

When there’s guests, there’s hosts. These hosts are blogs who live off guest post. Fortunately, they have enough traffic and reputation to consistently attract top-notch contents.

The host may blog once in a while, but more often than not, guest posts will be popping up more. With that, guests are very thankful for the opportunity to contribute,

Pros: You don’t have to write another article on your blog ever again if you don’t want to. There is enough content coming in that you can simply post whenever he feels like it. Premium hosts can ride the wave of success just by doing this.

Cons: A heavy workload awaits you. Sorting through guest posts, editing them, and managing the whole guest-posting process. Takes up quite a bit of work, doesn’t it?

#8) The Social Operator

Picture of Social media apps gif

Are you the masters of the social world?

Social operators are on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn more than their own blog. These bloggers decided that they are not just writers – they’re strategists, editors, promoters, and data analysts.

Amazingly enough, there is something about the way they conduct themselves online that draws tons of followers towards them.

Pros: Social Operators are very popular. They know what social media platforms to use and how to use them best. Besides that, they are also always up to date with the latest social trends and gadgets.

Cons: Oh, I’ve forgotten that they have blogs in hand too. Social media is notorious for sucking away our precious time for trivial socializing. Social operators are particularly vulnerable to this especially when their popularity demands many social interactions.

#9) The Eager Beaver

Picture of Eager beaver shows up for work on Satruday

Eager beaver is forever the enthusiastic one.

The eager beaver often works fast and know how to pump out contents, like a print machine. They post on a daily basis and sometimes multiple times per day. Just look at the biggest blog in the world, Huffington Post, publishes up to thousands of articles per day.

Thousands! Shocking? Not to an eager beaver.

Pros: SEO benefits coming right up. The more content you have, the more information Google has to work with. The readers of the eager beaver will enjoy this because they know they can visit everyday and still get fresh contents slapped on their face – possibly boosting reader engagement and traffic.

Cons: Fatigue. I can’t imagine having to post every single day (let alone multiple times a day) without getting mentally exhausted. That could be because some of my posts take me two days to write, but I know I’m not alone in this. Yeah? Most importantly, quality could suffer from the burden to produce everyday and forcing it when inspiration is lacking.

#10) The Ninja

Ninja on social media

Ninjas are stealth bloggers and the complete opposite of eager beavers. While the beavers are pumping out blog posts like crazy, the ninjas are sitting back for days or weeks without posting.

BUT, when the time is right, the ninja will strike with an astonishing post and disappears for another few days or weeks.

Pros: Every post written by the ninja is special. Like the Olympic Games and FIFA World Cup are unique for being held every four years, new blogs are a rare treat for fans of the blog. There’s not a need to worry about the quality of the blogs as it is being crafted over a longer period of time.

Cons: Your audience might forget the existence of you if you post on your blog let’s say, twice a month. Simultaneously, if your new post fails to impress, there is a high probability of unsubscribers or generally upset readers. The stakes are higher and the consequences are greater when you post scarcely.

#11) The Commentator

Jim Carrey is pressing the keyboard gif

This blogger is everywhere.

No, they are not guest posters, they are commentators. After reading the entire blog post, the next thing you’ll see is the comment section. Sure enough, there is this person there that commented on most of the blogs that you’ve visited.

Similarly, there are various types of commenters too. From the long-winded to the truly interested ones.

Pros: Every blogger loves comments. It is enjoyable to engage with others who produce quality content. I also believe that commenting is an applicable traffic-generating strategy.

Cons: Some comments are better than others. If you leave a generic “Great Post” or “Interesting” comments everywhere you go, nobody will take the initiative to visit your blog. If leaving comments is your main strategy for getting traffic, I doubt it is going to get you far. Correct me if I am wrong.

#12) The Comedian

Comedian laughing out loud gif

The Comedian is there to make us laugh.

Who doesn’t like adding a dose of humor in their life? Oddly enough, some blogs have that as the only goal. The comedian just can’t resist to squeeze in a one-liner or share a funny story.

In our hectic, busy lives, some good old humor is like a whiff of fresh air. Plus, laughter burns calories. It’s like a workout for the brain and mind. So, why not more of them?

Pros: Who doesn’t love laughing? No one, that’s who. The obvious fact is that laughter is enjoyable and contagious. A successfully comedic blogger will be able to gain fans quickly because everybody loves to share funny contents.

Cons: If your humor fails to impress, it has the opposite effect of “gaining fans quickly”. There will be some people out there that don’t appreciate your particular style of humor.

#13) The Grammar Nazi

Theiry'r Grammar Nazi

Do you haet typos? If you spot a gramma error, does you’re blood boil?

The grammar nazi like words. They believe words should be treated with kindness and respect. It pains them when they see them being abused.

If you don’t know yet, grammar nazi is a popular and catchy phrase for referring to people who condemn errors of grammar – or what they think are errors and who correct other people’s language.

Pros: Strive for perfection. Blog posts written by grammar nazis are more than perfect. By using proper grammar in all of your writing, you’ll be less likely to slip into sloppy writing when you need to be precise. With that, readers can focus on your message.

Cons: The first thing that comes to mind is someone who is attentive bordering on fussy, who believes strongly in the importance of rules. When someone writes professionally, your hands are sometimes faster than your brain. So give us break yeah? At the same time, we definitely appreciate when you point out our mistakes, which leads me to my next point.

#14) The Grammatical Error

English Fail

These bloggers aren’t the best with written language. I hesitated for some time wondering if I should include this, but it is what it is. Most readers won’t demand perfect grammar, but we all have our limits of what we can tolerate.

Pros: It is possible to write posts very quickly if no attention is given to grammar. 3 posts a day? No problem.

Cons: Poor user experience I would say. If the grammar is bad enough, I and many others won’t revisit a blog. Undoubtedly, many promising blogs have died from grammatical failure. But that is a case of one in a million.

#15) The Freelancer

Freelancers are those who are paid for providing services. They cover topics provided by their clients. Some market themselves as experts in a particular industry or niche, while others market themselves as general writers who can cover any aspect with a bit of research.

Pros: You have a multitude of clients and can walk away from one if it’s not working with you. You can also make an unlimited amount of money with the flexible schedules.

Cons: Communication problems. It happens when you are not given specific, detailed instructions. Accepting an occasional last-minute project and having a week where workload seems heavier is another thing.

Which Are You?

The blogosphere is bigger than this article of 2500+ words, and I simply couldn’t cover every single type of bloggers. Please feel free to tell me if I’ve missed some of the honorary mentions.

Blog writing isn’t as easy as what other people think, but it can be enjoyable if you thoroughly enjoy doing it. Whatever kind of blogger you are, always remember the purpose of establishing your blog in the first place. Don’t lose sight of your goal and the rest shall follow.

With that, I wish you’d continue doing what you’re doing no matter what category you’ve fallen into. I hope it is as educational as it is engaging for you.

What kind of blogger are you? Are you any one of the 15 mentioned in this article? Share with me your thoughts in the comments below!

Updated: 10/11/17