- #11: The pages are *eating* each other! Is that a problem?
- #10: Cue the dramatic hamster
- #9: 🎶 This issue has a soundtrack 🎶
- #8: 30% more cuddles
- #7: SEO Speedwagon
- #6: It's like living in the future!
- #5: How sketchy could it be?
- #4: Hieronymous Bosch levels of detail
- #3: We miss you, Kid Pix
- #2: GPT-3 is coming for your job, or it isn't
- #1: The first one
#7: SEO Speedwagon
👋 Hey, it’s the Ercule newsletter!
We take algorithms, analytics, and spreadsheets off your plate so you can focus on storytelling, branding, dollar-bill origami, dog pool parties, absolutely anything else.
In this issue:
- Google’s new content performance tool
- Cookie consent speed runs
- Why paid search performance depends on high-quality content
- Betteridge’s Law in action, and how to scale your freelance business
🐣 Google released a new content performance tool
Google just released a tool called Search Console Insights, which is going to make performance tracking a lot more accessible.
A lot of this stuff is available already in Google Analytics, but the new Insights tool combines Analytics with Search Console and sends you little updates periodically on your content performance.
Let’s take the ercule.co report as an example. Today, it’s showing:
- The query that’s driving the most traffic to us from Google
- How our newest content is doing, in terms of pageviews
- A pointer to some content that has a much lower bounce rate than our other stuff, worth investigating
Plus there are some cute badges, like a nice little trophy next to a term where we rank in the top 5. Pop pop!
🏄 What you can do
If you have Google Search Console set up, you have access to Search Console Insights. Here’s a link, too. The information that Insights will show you is not systematic. But it is a great way to start conversations with your team:
- Traffic is down on our whitepapers…
- Our organic ranking is improving for keywords X and Y. Now would be a good time to work on new keyword campaigns…
- Website XYZ is driving the most traffic to our lead capture page. How can we leverage this?
🎩 Waking up to cookie consent legerdemain
We’ve talked about devious opt-in forms before – and the miserable UX they can cause.
The same goes for cookie consent forms. And even if you’ve got the most noble intentions for the forms on your site, you might be falling into some dark patterns.
So here’s an online game to build up your cookie-consent literacy. It’s surprisingly tough (and fun!) and highlights some interesting UX features:
- Button design (and how it compels the eye)
- Visual layout (and how it stymies the eye)
- Orchestrated urgency (that timer!)
All in all, this game is a good way to strengthen your own literacy as a user, and gain a little more empathy as an admin.
(Of course, third-party cookies will be phased out in the next year or so, but that’s a separate discussion.)
💸 Content quality really matters for paid search
Paid search is organic search plus one additional ranking factor: money.
Literally. The ranking algorithm for ads takes into account very similar factors to those used for organic rankings, like
- Landing page UX
- How much you’re willing to bid for a certain keyword
That means that useful, engaging content can dramatically lower acquisition costs. And the inverse is also true: poor content requires higher bids.
Google will tell you when content is limiting you.
This is all good news. It means that you, as a content marketer, have a lot to contribute to paid acquisition programs.
🏄 What you can do
You might not want to pull paid search reports yourself. But you can talk to the person who is in charge of your team’s paid search. Say something like…
Do you know how Google Ads is rating the quality of our landing pages? I’d love to see where there’s an opportunity to rank better.
I’ve heard Google Ads uses content quality as a factor for how often our ads show up. Do you have a sense as to if we’re having to pay more because of content quality? And is there anything I can do to help with that?
🐝 Tips for quitting your job and making a better internet
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🕵️ About Ercule
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