Introduction

Right now, more than ever, the companies that are going to win in 2020 are going to be the ones that understand the importance of tying all of their digital marketing disciplines together.

Think about designing a physical store. You would want to make sure that the store looks, feels, and even smells a certain way. When you move to the digital space though, consumers' senses are reduced, and they get hyper-focused on the experience they receive. Opinions of your brand are made in a matter of seconds. They expect content to be concise, load fast, and consistent no matter what channel they get to your website through.

Throughout this playbook, we interviewed six Siteimprove subject matter experts ranging from data analytics and SEO to accessibility and paid search to give you tips, actionable takeaways, and trends they see heading into 2020.

- Torben Rytt, Chief Growth Officer

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The Digital Marketing landscape has completely transformed over the past decade.

53% of visitors abandon a site if it takes more than 3 seconds to load

DoubleClick

79% of visitors will not return to a poor performing website

- Kissmetrics

PPC visitors are 50% more likely to purchase something than organic visitors

- Unbounce

61% of Google Ads budgets spent on search terms that never convert

- Search Engine Journal

84% of companies said one of the main functions of their website is to act as a company brochure

- IDG

One in four people may have difficulty navigating your website

- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Choose A Play

Pick a play from one of our Siteimprove experts and learn how to start building your digital strategy.

Create Content for Today's Searcher

Search engine results aren’t what they used to be with the rise of voice search tools such as Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. With this trend, I’ve seen people moving towards asking direct questions for instant gratification answers and away from reading 2,000-word essays to find those same answers.

To improve SEO, I suggest creating content that gets the point across clearly and concisely.

As we move forward, we will see less of people clicking into a website to find the results but rather finding answers on Google search pages and leaving.

Focus on your user, get to know them, come to love them and build content the way they want to read it. Because at the end of the day, that’s what’s going to help them reach their goals within your website.

Here’s a tip: A great place to start is Google’s free service, the Google Search Console which allows users to see what queries people use to find their websites and improve search visibility. Another great tool to discover search questions is Answer the Public.
Diane Kulseth, Senior SEO Consultant at Siteimprove

Optimize Your Website for The Instant Gratification Generation

I see the goal of web performance as two-fold:

  1. User experience - Performance is the foundation of the user experience; until your site begins to render on the user’s device, there is no user experience.
  2. Accessibility – If performance is poor, the content of the page is ultimately inaccessible to anyone until it appears.

Before you start making major performance improvements, you’ll want to have a measurement system in place. If you can’t convince people the work is worth doing, you won’t get support within your organization to do that work.

Once you have a measurement system in place, the next step is to establish baselines across all your page types (i.e., product detail pages, search pages, etc.). Then you can start making performance improvements to see how they impact conversions on your site.

Tip for Web Developers: Don’t think of web performance as a development task, but rather as a company goal. Find advocates within your team and push the performance narrative upward. When company leadership recognizes this and begins to push web performance as a company priority, your chance of success only improves.
Jeremy Wagner, Web Performance Consultant at Siteimprove

The Question Your Paid Search Strategy Should Answer

I see a lot of marketers struggling to tie back ROI to their paid advertising campaigns. The first item marketers need to look at is their website. Are the pages loading fast and are conversion events set up on the website? If your website is not performing, your users will struggle to convert and you won’t see ROI.

Once you know that your website performs well, I recommend looking at your SEO components to see what the website is ranking for. What SEO work needs to be done? And then from there comes in your paid strategy. Your paid strategy should answer, “Where can I fill the gap?” and “Where is the area of opportunity for the business?” You want to drive traffic with business intent that will convert.

Paid should focus on ROI lower funnel keywords in business opportunity areas. But don’t forget your paid strategy should come last - your website performance and SEO strategy come first.

Here's a tip: Automate SEO reports, look at the data points, and connect with your SEO team on a weekly basis. This relationship is mutually beneficial.
Karen Hager, Google Ads Consultant at Siteimprove

Three Tips for Building a Better Analytics Program

Tip 1: Set up your foundation

When starting with your web analytics program, build a strong foundation before anything else. Start by determining 3 to 4 important metrics you want to track on your website. Everyone wants to begin with A/B testing and optimization programs. But you must make sure that the foundation of your house is well done before you go building roofs.

Tip 2: Give data access to everyone

You may have heard the term data democratization before. Data democratization is about making data easily available across your organization. Having web analytics tools that are easy to use and accessible is key for empowering your teams and enabling better decisions.

Tip 3: Bring all your data together

Right now, there are so many different data sources and marketing tools to look at when it comes to measuring your digital marketing efforts. Building more cohesive views and data visualizations with tools like Power B.I., Tableau, or using APIs can help bring all your data together.

Brett Patterson, Senior Analytics Consultant at Siteimprove

Incorporate Accessibility into Your Digital Strategy

When people think of accessibility, they often think of compliance. But accessibility, at its core, means providing the best user experience possible for all your visitors. Follow this 8-step roadmap to incorporate accessibility into your digital marketing strategy:

  1. Understand the problem
  2. Gain organizational support
  3. Create a baseline with your first accessibility audit
  4. Set goals and a timeline
  5. Educate the wider team
  6. Implement the plan
  7. Communicate progress
  8. Sustain the program

If you start looking at the size of the audience that you're targeting, remember that up to one in five people may have difficulty navigating your website. Understanding your website from how it is coded, to the homepage’s readability, affect the user experience and—ultimately—conversions.

Recommended Resource: Learn more about making accessibility a priority in your organization by signing up for Siteimprove Academy’s Accessibility for Leadership learning track.
Kevin Rydberg, Accessibility Consultant at Siteimprove

The Secret Weapon for Tying Your Digital Strategy Together

Marketing operations is going to be an extremely important function over the next decade. There are many desperate solutions and products that people are using in silos. There are tools that work well, but they don't always work well together. Building a strategy and having the forethought to understand how to connect data, tools and systems is extremely important to gaining ROI and growing a marketing budget.

Enabling your digital marketing teams across all areas of your business builds a strong foundation for cross-functional collaboration. You can't move the needle on chopsticks and duct tape. Everyone today is a modern marketer, meaning there is virtually no role that doesn’t utilize a tool or data to scale efficiencies and serve your audience.

Carissa Dean, Head of US Field Marketing at Siteimprove

Thanks for reading!

We hope this playbook gave concrete advice to help you create higher quality content, drive better traffic, measure digital performance, and provide a better user experience.

Our goal at Siteimprove is to help marketing teams connect the different components of their digital marketing strategy so they can deliver results and ROI faster. By providing automated insights and recommendations, we help over 4,500 U.S. organizations improve site performance, SEO, ad campaigns, and more—all from the Siteimprove Intelligence Platform.

To learn more about how we can team up, visit our solutions for growing marketing teams.