03/08: Digital Marketing News

Iain Curran, Laura Colford

This week, Iain Curran highlights the benefits of User Generated Content for your content strategy, Laura Colford gives insight into the SEO impact of Google's 'Speed Update'.

UGC; letting influencer’s build your brand for Gen Z

There is no doubt the rise of influencer marketing has been meteoric, and companies recognise its unparalleled ability to connect with their audience. So why are brands placing so much trust in influencers - instead of their own marketing teams? 

One of the main reasons is user-generated content, which has been shown to yield a significantly higher level of engagement and drive more conversions than other forms of media. Using influencers to create content lets the consumer see a product through their peer’s eyes, which feels more authentic and instils trust in the quality. Social Media Today surveyed 500 organisations and report that 75% of respondents find UGC makes content more authentic. Pretty powerful stats!

Once the brand has identified the right user-generated assets they can reactivate them on their own social accounts and website, creating a curated selection of the most relevant content. Doing this can help make those all-important conversions, a theory backed up by statistics – Digital Doughnut reports that User-Generated photos are 5 times more likely to convert customers vs non UGC.

The affinity with this form of marketing is particularly high in millennials and generation Z, whose trust and influence largely lies in the online domain.

Of course, with any marketing campaign decision making needs to be strategic. Brands and marketing professionals need to have done adequate research to make sure the influencers they choose don’t have brand crossover, are producing assets that align correctly and have an engaged community of followers.

If all of this is done correctly, you are looking at one of the most impactful way to communicate with your consumers, gain high ROI and ultimately drive more conversions.

Iain Curran, Digital Marketing Executive


Site speed ranking updates

With Google now using page speed as a ranking factor in mobile searches, what does it mean for mobile SEO strategy?

Google announced the Speed Update back in January this year and has now rolled out the algorithm to all mobile devices. Page speed has been a significant ranking factor with desktop searches since 2010, and until this year Google has always promised to review how this is applied to mobile – without any indication on when it would come into play.

With the continued increase in smartphone use, Google now serves a higher number of mobile results than desktop results. This shift means the weight at which ranking factors are prioritized in desktop vs mobile will start to change, this being a key example.

Finally, the Speed Update has arrived, and it means as marketeers ­we need to adapt our SEO mobile strategy to reflect the new requirements. Google is usually pretty shy about announcing updates and as they have in this instance it probably indicates the long-term impact will be significant. 

So, how can we optimise our page speed in mobile sites? There are multiple quick wins that can be done to enhance page speed including making sure images are compressed, minifying source code and using Google’s own Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) technology.

Implementing this into the wider SEO strategy will mean you increase your reach to mobile search queries, rank higher for consumers on the go and drive the goals of the website.

Laura Colford, Content Editor