Let’s Make Money: 4 Tactics for Agencies Looking to Succeed – Whiteboard Friday

Posted by rjonesx.

We spend a lot of time discussing SEO tactics, but in a constantly changing industry, one thing that deserves more attention are the tactics agencies should employ in order to see success. From confidently raising your prices to knowing when to say no, Moz's own Russ Jones covers four essential success tactics that'll ultimately increase your bottom line in today's edition of Whiteboard Friday.

Agency tactics

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Video Transcription

Howdy, Moz fans. I am Russ Jones, and I can't tell you how excited I am for my first Whiteboard Friday. I am Principal Search Scientist here at Moz. But before coming to Moz, for the 10 years prior to that, I was the Chief Technology Officer of a small SEO agency back in North Carolina. So I have a strong passion for agencies and consultants who are on the ground doing the work, helping websites rank better and helping build businesses.

So what I wanted to do today was spend a little bit of time talking about the lessons that I learned at an agency that admittedly I only learned through trial and error. But before we even go further, I just wanted to thank the folks at Hive Digital who I learned so much from, Jeff and Jake and Malcolm and Ryan, because the team effort over time is what ended up building an agency. Any agency that succeeds knows that that's part of it. So we'll start with that thank-you.

But what I really want to get into is that we spend a lot of time talking about SEO tactics, but not really about how to succeed in an industry that changes rapidly, in which there's almost no certification, and where it can be difficult to explain to customers exactly how they're going to be successful with what you offer. So what I'm going to do is break down four really important rules that I learned over the course of that 10 years. We're going to go through each one of them as quickly as possible, but at the same time, hopefully you'll walk away with some good ideas. Some of these are ones that it might at first feel a little bit awkward, but just follow me.

1. Raise prices

The first rule, number one in Let's Make Money is raise your prices. Now, I remember quite clearly two years in to my job at Hive Digital — it was called Virante then — and we were talking about raising prices. We were just looking at our customers, saying to ourselves, “There's no way they can afford it.” But then luckily we had the foresight that there was more to raising prices than just charging your customers more.

How it benefits old customers

The first thing that just hit us automatically was… “Well, with our old customers, we can just discount them. It's not that bad. We're in the same place as we always were.” But then it occurred to us, “Wait, wait, wait. If we discount our customers, then we're actually increasing our perceived value.” Our existing customers now think, “Hey, they're actually selling something better that's more expensive, but I'm getting a deal,” and by offering them that deal because of their loyalty, you engender more loyalty. So it can actually be good for old customers.

How it benefits new customers

Now, for new customers, once again, same sort of situation. You've increased the perceived value. So your customers who come to you think, “Oh, this company is professional. This company is willing to invest. This company is interested in providing the highest quality of services.” In reality, because you've raised prices, you can. You can spend more time and money on each customer and actually do a better job. The third part is, “What's the worst that could happen?” If they say no, you offer them the discount. You're back where you started. You're in the same position that you were before.

How it benefits your workers

Now, here's where it really matters — your employees, your workers. If you are offering bottom line prices, you can't offer them raises, you can't offer them training, you can't hire them help, or you can't get better workers. But if you do, if you raise prices, the whole ecosystem that is your agency will do better.

How it improves your resources

Finally, and most importantly, which we'll talk a little bit more later, is that you can finally tool up. You can get the resources and capital that you need to actually succeed. I drew this kind of out.

If we have a graph of quality of services that you offer and the price that you sell at, most agencies think that they're offering great quality at a little price, but the reality is you're probably down here. You're probably under-selling your services and, because of that, you can't offer the best that you can.

You should be up here. You should be offering higher quality, your experts who spend time all day studying this, and raising prices allows you to do that.

2. Schedule

Now, raising prices is only part one. The second thing is discipline, and I am really horrible about this. The reality is that I'm the kind of guy who looks for the latest and greatest and just jumps into it, but schedule matters. As hard as it is to admit it, I learned this from the CPC folks because they know that they have to stay on top of it every day of the week.

Well, here's something that we kind of came up with as I was leaving the company, and that was to set all of our customers as much as possible into a schedule.

Annually: we would handle keywords and competitors doing complete analysis.
Semi-annually: Twice a year, we would do content analysis. What should you be writing about? What's changed in your industry? What are different keywords that you might be able to target now given additional resources?
Quarterly: You need to be looking at links. It's just a big enough issue that you've got to look at it every couple of months, a complete link analysis.
Monthly: You should be looking at your crawls. Moz will do that every week for you, but you should give your customers an idea, over the course of a month, what's changed.
Weekly: You should be doing rankings

But there are three things that, when you do all of these types of analysis, you need to keep in mind. Each one of them is a…

Report
Hours for consulting
Phone call

This might seem like a little bit of overkill. But of course, if one of these comes back and nothing changed, you don't need to do the phone call, but each one of these represents additional money in your pocket and importantly better service for your customers.

It might seem hard to believe that when you go to a customer and you tell them, “Look, nothing's changed,” that you're actually giving them value, but the truth is that if you go to the dentist and he tells you, you don't have a cavity, that's good news. You shouldn't say to yourself at the end of the day, “Why'd I go to the dentist in the first place?” You should say, “I'm so glad I went to the dentist.” By that same positive outlook, you should be selling to your customers over and over and over again, hoping to give them the clarity they need to succeed.

3. Tool up!

So number three, you're going to see this a lot in my videos because I just love SEO tools, but you've got to tool up. Once you've raised prices and you're making more money with your customers, you actually can. Tools are superpowers. Tools allow you to do things that humans just can't do. Like I can't figure out the link graph on my own. I need tools to do it. But tools can do so much more than just auditing existing clients. For example, they can give you…

Better leads:

You can use tools to find opportunities.Take for example the tools within Moz and you want to find other car dealerships in the area that are really good and have an opportunity to rank, but aren't doing as well as they should be in SERPs. You want to do this because you've already serviced successfully a different car dealership. Well, tools like Moz can do that. You don't just have to use Moz to help your clients. You can use them to help yourself.

Better pre-audits:

Nobody walks into a sales call blind. You know who the website is. So you just start with a great pre-audit.

Faster workflows:

Which means you make more money quicker. If you can do your keyword analysis annually in half the time because you have the right tool for it, then you're going to make far more money and be able to serve more customers.

Bulk pricing:

This one is just mind-blowingly simple. It's bulk pricing. Every tool out there, the more you buy from them, the lower the price is. I remember at my old company sitting down at one point and recognizing that every customer that came in the door would need to spend about $1,000 on individual accounts to match what they were getting through us by being able to take advantage of the bulk discounts that we were getting as an agency by buying these seats on behalf of all of our customers.

So tell your clients when you're talking to them on the phone, in the pitch be like, “Look, we use Moz, Majestic, Ahrefs, SEMrush,” list off all of the competitors. “We do Screaming Frog.” Just name them all and say, “If you wanted to go out and just get the data yourself from these tools, it would cost you more than we're actually charging you.” The tools can sell themselves. You are saving them money.

4. Just say NO

Now, the last section, real quickly, are the things you've just got to learn to say no to. One of them has a little nuance to it. There's going to be some bite back in the comments, I'm pretty sure, but I want to be careful with it.

No month-to-month contracts

The first thing to say no to is month-to-month contracts.

If a customer comes to you and they say, “Look, we want to do SEO, but we want to be able to cancel every 30 days.” the reality is this. They're not interested in investing in SEO. They're interested in dabbling in SEO. They're interested in experimenting with SEO. Well, that's not going to succeed. It's only going to take one competitor or two who actually invest in it to beat them out, and when they beat them out, you're going to look bad and they're going to cancel their account with you. So sit down with them and explain to them that it is a long-term strategy and it's just not worth it to your company to bring on customers who aren't interested in investing in SEO. Say it politely, but just turn it away.

Don't turn anything away

Now, notice that my next thing is don't turn anything away. So here's something careful. Here's the nuance. It's really important to learn to fire clients who are bad for your business, where you're losing money on them or they're just impolite, but that doesn't mean you have to turn them away. You just need to turn them in the right direction. That right direction might be tools themselves. You can say, “Look, you don't really need our consulting hours. You should go use these tools.” Or you can turn them to other fledgling businesses, friends you have in the industry who might be struggling at this time.

I'll tell you a quick example. We don't have much time, but many, many years ago, we had a client that came to us. At our old company, we had a couple of rules about who we would work with. We chose not to work in the adult industry. But at the time, I had a friend in the industry. He lived outside of the United States, and he had fallen on hard times. He literally had his business taken away from him via a series of just really unscrupulous events. I picked up the phone and gave him a call. I didn't turn away the customer. I turned them over to this individual.

That very next year, he had ended up landing a new job at the top of one of the largest gambling organizations in the world. Well, frankly, they weren't on our list of people we couldn't work with. We landed the largest contract in the history of our company at that time, and it set our company straight for an entire year. It was just because instead of turning away the client, we turned them to a different direction. So you've got to say no to turning away everybody. They are opportunities. They might not be your opportunity, but they're someone's.

No service creep

The last one is service creep. Oh, man, this one is hard. A customer comes up to you and they list off three things that you offer that they want, and then they say, “Oh, yeah, we need social media management.” Somebody else comes up to you, three things you want to offer, and they say, “Oh yeah, we need you to write content,” and that's not something you do. You've just got to not do that. You've got to learn to shave off services that you can't offer. Instead, turn them over to people who can do them and do them very well.

What you're going to end up doing in your conversation, your sales pitch is, “Look, I'm going to be honest with you. We are great at some things, but this isn't our cup of tea. We know someone who's really great at it.” That honesty, that candidness is just going to give them such a better relationship with you, and it's going to build a stronger relationship with those other specialty companies who are going to send business your way. So it's really important to learn to say no to say no service creep.

Well, anyway, there's a lot that we went over there. I hope it wasn't too much too fast, but hopefully we can talk more about it in the comments. I look forward to seeing you there. Thanks.

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Improve Your SEO in 30 Minutes With These Google Analytics Insights

improve-seo

SEO is a vast topic.

I’ve written countless articles about SEO over the years.

In fact, if you search for “SEO tactics” on Google, you’ll get over 4 million results.

Almost three out of every four searches start on Google.

And the first five results that show up on Google get 67% of all clicks.

So you can see why SEO is such an important topic.

Thankfully, you don’t need to study the subject for years before you can excel at SEO.

I’m going to show you four quick wins you can easily achieve to boost your SEO.

These won’t take you weeks or months of trial and error. You can uncover these wins in Google Analytics in less than 30 minutes.

But first, let’s make sure that you’ve set up your Google Analytics properly.

Make sure you have the basics of Google Analytics down

Google Analytics has no shortage of reports, tools, and data.

At times, it probably feels like there’s too much.

There are times when all of this data can be downright misleading.

Fortunately, I won’t worry about taking you into the advanced settings of Google Analytics right now.

Today, it’s all about finding those quick wins.

I’m going to give you the critical 20% of the work you can do to boost 80% of your results.

However, to get those quick wins, we first need to make sure that you’ve taken care of your Google Analytics and Google Search Console basic setup.

If you don’t have a GA account at all, you can check out a beginner’s guide on how to set it up.

Step 1: Check your XML Sitemap.

You should have your sitemap registered with Google Search Console to help Google properly analyze your site.

A standard sitemap looks like this:

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If you use WordPress, you can simply download the Google XML Sitemap plugin.

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However, just syncing your sitemap isn’t enough.

You need to make sure that Google is reading it properly and that you don’t have any errors.

Indexing errors will skew your Analytics report and make it more difficult for you to capture quick wins.

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Next, you need to find out if Google is actually using your sitemap.

Step 2: Make sure Google is crawling your site.

First, you need to log into your Search Console and click the site you want Google to crawl. Then, click “Fetch as Google” in the “Crawl” section.

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You can then enter the path to the page in the text box.

Select either “desktop” or “mobile” from the drop-down list and click “Fetch.” You should test for both desktop and mobile.

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Once it finishes testing, you can request indexing.

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This helps you make sure that Google is crawling it. You can also ask Google to crawl all of its direct links.

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Additionally, you should use Google’s robots.txt Tester tool to see if you’ve correctly set up your robots.txt file for all of the pages you want Googlebot to crawl (or not crawl).

You can even send your own crawler to your site to check it out.

And there are tools like Screaming Frog that can test for you to make sure that Google’s bots won’t run into any errors.

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Step 3: Check your indexing.

You can check your indexing in two ways.

Your first option is simply to go to Google and type “site:yourdomain.com.”

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This will instantly tell you how many pages Google thinks your site has.

The second method is to go back to your Search Console and select “Index Status.”

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This will also show you the number of pages Google has indexed. (The number you see here should match the number you got from trying the first method.)

If Google is showing fewer pages than you actually have, it means that Google hasn’t yet indexed some of your content and you won’t be able to get any Analytics data on it.

If, on the other hand, Google is showing more pages than you actually have, it suggests that you might have a duplicate content problem.

You can use Screaming Frog or a tool like Copyscape to identify any duplicate content that Google believes you have.

Now that you know that Google is capturing your data correctly, there’s one more piece you should set up to maximize your Google Analytics data.

Step 4: Create some goals.

Google defines goals as measurements for how often people are taking the actions you want them to take.

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For example, one of my goals on my site is for people to click the orange button. pasted image 0 321

Setting up goals allows you to measure GA data alongside the specific outcomes that are important to you.

To get to the goals section, click the admin tab inside Google Analytics.

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Then, in the column furthest to the right, select “Goals.”

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Click the “+New Goal” button.

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Now, you can either select one of their templates to start from or choose the “custom” button at the bottom.

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I’ll walk you through a template for now, but Google offers further info on setting up custom goals if you’re interested.

Let’s choose the “Make a payment” template as an example.

Select that option and click “Continue.”

From here, you can name your goal and give it a type.

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I’ll choose “Destination” and click “Continue.”

Now, enter your checkout confirmation page URL into the bar and keep the “Equals to” option.

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You can leave the “Value” option off but turn the “Funnel” option on if you want your goal to track a specific journey to conversion.

For example, let’s say you only want to track buyers who go from your homepage to a product page, then from the product page to a checkout page, and finally go to a confirmation page.

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Be careful when you narrow down funnels, though.

Your funnels will make it so that only buyers who follow those exact steps will count toward this goal.

After you finish this section, click “Save.”

Your goal should now be live, and Google Analytics should be recording them. Congrats! pasted image 0 329

Now that you have your goals all set up, let’s look at some quick ways that you can boost your SEO.

1. Find your best content

There will be some pieces of content on your site that naturally rank and convert better than others.

Using GA, you can quickly find which pages are performing well so that you can capitalize on them.

Let’s start by looking at how you can find your content that’s converting the best.

There are two ways to go about this.

First, you can look at your attribution path to conversion.

Google offers a number of attribution models so that you can see where your customers came from before converting.

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You have to keep in mind that GA’s default is “last touch attribution,” which tends to lie.

If you’re going to use attribution models to identify converting content, then make sure you’re aware of the buyer’s journey.

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As you can see, it’s rare that only one touchpoint is solely responsible for conversion. Buyers typically go through multiple stages.

With the buyer’s journey in mind, you can use the attribution model that will help you best interpret your data.

The second way to find your best-converting content is by looking up your Reverse Goal Path.

Log into GA and look under conversions in the left-hand menu.

You’ll see a “Goals” drop-down, and underneath that, you’ll see “Reverse Goal Path.”

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Simply select the goal you want to track. On the right-hand side, you’ll see the previous steps that happened right before someone converted.

It should look like this:

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Your confirmation or “Thank You” page is on the far left.

Next to that, you’ll see your purchase page or opt-in page.

Then, to the right of that, you’ll see the pages that brought your traffic to make the purchase.

These will often be landing pages. However, you may also see other pages or posts on your site that have strong calls-to-action.

You want to focus on funneling people to the pages in the right-hand column when they’re in the “ready to buy” portion of the sales funnel.

Now that you know that this content is helping conversions, you want to promote it to boost the traffic to those pages.

You can also create more internal links back to those pages to help direct your site visitors to that content.

This is a great approach to help you increase your conversions. But your best-converting content may not be your best-ranking content.

Here’s how you can quickly find your top-ranking content.

In the GA left-hand menu, select “Acquisition,” then “Search Console,” and finally “Queries.”

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This will show you all of the keywords that pages on your website currently rank for on Google.

You can see which pages correspond to which query or keyword and which page they currently rank on.

You should identify any pages showing up on page one and note which keywords they are ranking for.

This allows you to do two things.

If the keywords and content complement one of your top-converting pages, make sure you provide a link and a CTA on the high-ranking page to help draw people over to convert. Add more internal links to your high-ranking pages to and from other content to help boost its rankings. 2. Help out your lower ranking content

The method I showed you above will help you identify your best content. Now, here’s some good news:

You can use this same method to help you find your second-best content, too.

Why would you want to do this?

Because updating and improving your old content to boost its rankings can be a quick way to improve your SEO.

Unbounce stopped publishing for two weeks in order to go back and update their old content.

Their efforts paid off with 275% more conversions from their 17 highest-traffic posts.

But, if you have a lot of content, how do you pick which posts to focus on?

That’s where Google Analytics comes in.

It can help you find your content with the best potential to perform considerably better with a relatively small amount of work.

You want to keep in mind that there’s a huge difference between page one and page two of the SERPs.

At the beginning of this post, I shared with you that the first five results get 67% of all clicks.

On the other hand, if you end up on the second page of Google, you’re going to get less than 6% of clicks.

So, what does this mean?

It means that the most worthwhile content to focus on is stuff that’s near the top of page two. If you can push it onto the first page, you can expect to see a big jump in traffic from it.

To pinpoint that content, go back to your query page in GA.

Then, click on the “advanced” option and set the “Average Position” to “Greater than 10.”

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Save the results, and you’ll see all of your content that’s currently hanging out beyond page one.

Now, if you have a lot of content sitting on page two, narrow it down to the ones with the most impressions.

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You can also pinpoint all of the potential long-tail search queries that might be sending traffic to the same page.

Now, what do you do about it?

First, refer back to the last strategy. If you have high-ranking content that naturally complements content on page two, then make sure you link the two pieces of content together.

You should also refresh the content and follow the right steps to optimize it, such as:

Make sure that you’ve optimized all of your content for mobile Gain quality external backlinks Boost engagement with social shares and comments Improve your visuals

Make sure you’re targeting the top-ranking factors:

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If this looks overwhelming, don’t worry. Just focus on the basic, quick wins for SEO.

After all, you’re already on page two, not page ten. That means that you’re on the right track.

Just do a little extra to get your content out of the graveyard.

3. Reduce abandonment on high-traffic pages

Site-wide bounce rates are too broad to provide any use. They’re simply vanity metrics.

Bounce rate will vary according to industries, geographies, user demographics, devise usage, and many other factors.

Bounce rates for blogs tend to be higher than for e-commerce pages.

So, how do you figure out what’s causing abandonment?

Well, you first want to focus on fixing the pages with the most traffic since they’ll have the biggest impact.

Start by pinpointing your high-ranking pages that are bringing in lots of search traffic.

Then we can identify which of those valuable pages are failing to convert your visitors into your customers.

You can do this by looking in your GA account.

In the left-hand menu, under “Behavior,” click on “Site Content” and then “All Pages.”

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If you just want to look at landing pages, you can do that too. But right now, we’re going to stick with all pages.

Once you’re in there, click on the “advanced” option.

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Now make sure that your primary dimension is “Source” and then choose sources containing “Google / organic.”

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This will make it so that your results will only show the top-performing pages you have coming directly from organic Google search results.

It excludes all paid campaigns and any results that are getting big traffic due to social media efforts or other advertising efforts.

Now, when your results populate, you want to sort them so that the highest traffic pages are at the top.

Remember: these are the biggest and quickest wins, so they’re where we want to focus our attention first.

In the columns furthest to the right, you can see the “Bounce rate” and the “% Exit” for each of your highest traffic pages.

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The average bounce rate is just over 58%.

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If you’re seeing higher rates, don’t panic just yet.

Remember that a lot of things can impact bounce rate. The average varies across business type and industry.

If you’re a blogging management consultant site, you should expect a bounce rate that’s higher than the average.

On the other hand, a financial services e-commerce site should have a lower-than-average rate.

Rather than worry too much about your exact number, just focus on your highest rates.

Particularly, focus on pages that have both a high bounce rate and a high exit percent.

Those two metrics combined are a good signal that your page isn’t doing a great job of matching searcher intent.

Check the obvious problems first:

Is your content outdated? Is it easy to read with lots of relevant visuals and white space? Have you optimized it for mobile? How long does the page take to load? Is the page too brief to sufficiently answer the topic?

Also, consider the keywords your page is ranking for.

Do any of them have a double meaning?

If your page is ranking for a keyword that can mean more than one thing, this could create a high bounce rate.

If this is the case, make sure your meta tag is very clear about what your content is about.

There are lots of ways that you can use GA to slice and dice your bounce rate further to better understand what is causing it.

However, another quick method is to do some testing to see exactly why people are leaving these high traffic pages.

You can start by using a heatmap.

Heatmaps like those from Crazy Egg, allow you to see where visitors are clicking on your site.

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You can also use them to see which content your visitors have scrolled through.

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These can help you pinpoint what people are paying attention to and which content they touched right before they bounced.

Another way to lower your bounce rate is by A/B testing.

You can use A/B tests and an A/B test calculator to help you identify which changes are helping to decrease bounces.

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Some things you may want to A/B test include:

Color of your CTA buttons Position of your CTA buttons Images Headlines Subheadings Phrases on your navigation bar Number of form fields required Length of product trials Time-sensitive bonus offers 4. Pinpoint and improve your mobile conversions

Google now uses mobile-first indexing.

Mobile is getting the priority on SERPs.

There’s no real wonder to this since the use of mobile is continuing to grow.

Check out device usage on a regular work day:

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Tablets and phones are dominating the traditional “out-of-office” hours.

But look at this concerning research from Monetate.

Smartphones are responsible for over 51% of website visits.

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But their conversion rate is less than half of the rate for desktop users.

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Most of your site visitors are mobile, but they’re less than half as likely to convert as your desktop users.

So, what can you do about it, and how can GA quickly help?

First, log into your GA account and look under the “Audience” section in the left-hand sidebar for mobile.

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Expand it and select “Overview.”

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This will give you some information on how your site is performing on mobile devices.

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On the far right-hand side, you can select a goal completion for GA displayed next to your mobile performance breakdown.

Then, you can see the difference in conversion rate and total goal completions during that period.

Now you can clearly see if there’s a quantifiable difference in how your mobile site performs versus your desktop site.

Chances are, based on the study above, you will see it converting less. On average, it will convert around 2% less if you exclude tablets and isolate smartphones.

What can you do about it?

You need to make sure that you optimize all of your content for mobile.

Take a look at these two examples:

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Focus on these ten ways to improve your SEO by improving the mobile experience:

Use Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) markup Implement schema markup Choose a responsive web design Compress images Remove Flash Use a heatmap on the mobile version of your site to check for differences from desktop Check out Google’s repository of info for improving the mobile experience Make sure your mobile site is blazing fast Tag posts based on mobile searches Remove pop-ups from your mobile site

For quick wins, focus on improving the content that Google Analytics tells you is already getting mobile traffic.

In particular, focus your attention on those pages with high bounce rates on mobile devices.

Conclusion

Improving your SEO doesn’t have to consume all your time and energy. But too often, we make it more difficult than it needs to be.

We overcomplicate it or worry about things outside of our control instead of focusing on what’s actionable.

Focus on these quick and easy Google Analytics tips to pinpoint simple SEO fixes you can make right away to boost your performance today.

Optimize your best content.

Try to increase the rankings of page-two content to push it over onto page one.

Focus on decreasing your bounce rate on your high-traffic pages.

Finally, focus on mobile traffic and optimization.

What fast wins have you gotten out of Google Analytics?

The post Improve Your SEO in 30 Minutes With These Google Analytics Insights appeared first on Neil Patel.

Read more: neilpatel.com

How to Build and Manage a Private Facebook Group

Facebook is one of best available programmes to build and succeed a private society that will help flourish your business.

And I should know.

During my go as DigitalMarketer’s Lead Community Strategist, I managed over 11,500 members( and stretching) across 7 private Facebook groups–answering questions, providing support, and bridging the gap between DigitalMarketer’s clients and business.

Suzi Nelson answering a member in DigitalMarketer's private Facebook group, DM Engage

These private, online societies have had a tremendous impact on DigitalMarketer’s bottom line.

Establishing a thriving online community within the company’s patient base congregates a number of important business goals including…

Improved customer satisfaction Reduced pays Increased retention in monthly participations More marketings generated by word-of-mouth recommendations

There is a lot of gold to be found in creating and maintaining a private Facebook Group and offering it as a premium bonus with DigitalMarketer’s products–so here’s how it’s done at DigitalMarketer.

But before I depict you how to create an employed Facebook Group, first we should talk about why Facebook is one of the right place to host your online community.

Why Host Your Community on Facebook?

So why is Facebook the# 1 BEST place to host your online community?

Let me count the ways.

1) It has the users.

They’re a lot more likely to come back to their own communities, again and again, and actually engage with it.

( Almost 2 billion of them .)

In other utterances , no matter what niche or industry you’re in, your gathering is virtually guaranteed to be on Facebook.

And you know what else this implies?

People are already using it.

Your future community members are already calling Facebook on a regular basis. They already know how to use it. They’re previously comfy with it.

And as a result, they’re a lot more likely to come back to your community, again and again, and actually engage with it.

2) Facebook continues to come out with great new society management tools.

When I was firstly get into community handling, I actually thought that we should move our community to a brand-new platform( away from Facebook ). My intellect was simple: I just didn’t recall Facebook Groups were a good parish administration platform.

But today, I have totally changed my spirit about that. Now I reckon Facebook Groups are a GREAT region to start a community!

And you want to know why I did such a 180?

In part, it’s because Facebook has really invested in giving us the tools we need to be truly effective community managers.

Like the “Mute” feature. In the past, if someone was reacting inappropriately( like being inconsiderate to other members ), your alone option was to kick that person out of the group. But that’s not ever the best action to take–especially when your group consists of paid patrons like DigitalMarketer’s.

But now you can just subdue the person for 1-24 hours, give them time to cool off, and ultimately save that relationship.

And that’s only one small-scale lesson. There are many more tools–like Group Insights and the ability to report individual comments–that followed up with make it easier for you to manage your community on Facebook.

3) Facebook is investing in building community.

Especially communities their members find meaningful!

In fact, at the Facebook Community Summit in Chicago last year, Mark Zuckerberg announced that the Facebook platform is committed to constituting Groups an integral part of the Facebook experience–and they are using AI to do it.

In other words, Facebook is redoubling down on society by exploiting its AI to pour more people into high-engagement groups.

And research results have been impressive, to say the least 😛 TAGEND

“In 6 months we’ve facilitated 50% more parties find meaningful parishes on Facebook than had joined in the part biography of the product.”- Mark Zuckerberg

We’ve appeared the effects inside the DigitalMarketer Engage Facebook Group, too.

Starting in January of 2018, I started to notice something…strange.

The number of active members in our group was increasing. Significantly.

And it didn’t stop!

Engagement maintained going to go and up and up, even 60 days later( and weighing ):

A graph showing a significant uptake in community engagement starting in January 2018

Here’s the catch: I didn’t do a single concept to intentionally spur this upward trend.

It happened as a natural result of Facebook’s brand-new emphasis on community.

And if you can create a Facebook Group that is significant to your members’ name, then Facebook will reinforce you by showing your community announces more often, expanding your group’s contact, and helping your group to grow larger and more engaged.

So, the next happening you’re likely wondering is … HOW do you create a community like that?

Well, house and conserving a private Facebook Group for your purchasers is comprised of 5 major elements 😛 TAGEND 1. Create an Exclusive Facebook Group

A red arrow pointing the the

Private Facebook groups are private for a reason–not everyone can participate. There are certain diplomata that have to be met before the admin clicks “approve” to the join request.

Having some sort of aptitude for admittance in the working group naturally constructs a stronger community–people feel like they are a part of a special squad. They know they are all an integrated part of different groups for the same reason. If you merely make best available in, you’ll merely get the best of communities!

Exclusivity seldom requires a thick skin on the part of the admin. You can’t tell precisely anyone in. You will have to have to turn people apart, you will have to have embarrassing the talks with applicants who don’t satisfy the access specifications, and you will have to be consistent with your requirements.

You’ll also need a organization in place to remove those who no longer meet your suitabilities for membership.

This deters your member list neat and healthy.

Suzi following up with a person in Facebook Messenger about their request to join DM Enage

But the payoff is WORTH IT–you will end up with a community that is bonded by common attitudes, fascinates, and objectives instead of an aimless, eclectic group with a variety of motives and the justification for joining.

Facebook currently offers two options for creating exclusivity in your group: CLOSED groups and SECRET groups.

Options for creating a new group in Facebook

Secret groups are not searchable via Facebook–that intends no one but representatives( and in some cases, onetime representatives) can see the group identify, who’s in different groups, the group’s description and tags, or legends about different groups in Facebook’s newsfeed. Anyone can assemble, but they have to be invited or supplemented by a member or admin, is dependent on your group settings.

In contrast, shut radicals are publically viewable. They can show up as suggested groups on newsfeeds and the designation, description, and member listing are noticeable to anyone.

At DigitalMarketer, we opted to create a closed group, so our patrons would be able to locate our groups easier. This does result in an influx of requests to join from incompetent representatives, but the tradeoff is worth it–we make the world know that we have a tribe of thousands of digital sell supporters, and use the “publicity” of an exclusive group to build FOMO( “fear of missing out” ).

As a result, local communities is also possible positioned as a value overture, and we can use it as a highway to mount sales of our commodities 😛 TAGEND

Email sent to a person trying to join DM Engage, notifying them that first they must join DM Lab before they can be admitted to DM Engage

2. Establish Guidelines in the Facebook Group

It’s important to give your group some kind of guidance on what the different types of communication are fostered( or discouraged) in order to conserve a thriving community.

Expectations of behavior…

Supply a safe space for people to ask questions Render carry And build relationships with your business and other members

It accepts members to make ownership of how they can influence and encourage huge parish behavior.

While it can be persuasion to create a schedule of what members can and can’t do, I advocate appointing guidelines that describe how members can work together to create a healthful environment.

I’ve noticed … … that guidelines( as opposed to rules) create a better parish experience…

Previously, our rules were a directory of DON’Ts( as shown below ):

The previous DM Engage rules

Creating some kind of behavior promise is essential for creating a safe cavity in your community, but having a directory of do’s and don’t’s can feel terrify and vigorous to new members.

That’s why I generated Community Guidelines with simply two hard-and-fast powers( no promoting and no being a schmuck ), and then delineated 8 standards of expected behavior.

This not only positions “rules” in a more positive illuminate, but it allows members to take possession to seeing how they can influence and promote huge society behavior.

Here’s an excerpt of our specifications 😛 TAGEND

An excerpt from DM Engage's current Community Guidelines

Will your specifications inspect the same?

Of course not.

Take into account the goals and culture of your members and adjust accordingly.

3. Moderate Your Facebook Group

So what happens when someone infringe relevant rules? What if someone has a problem with other members? What happens when a member is disappointed with the group?

Moderating is vital to maintaining a healthy community–whether it is on Facebook or any other social media meeting. If you don’t render some sort of command over the conversation, others will control it for you.

With over 11,500 members in our DM Engage Facebook Group alone, settles are bound to get smashed; and they are broken often. Parties get upset with other beings and reach out for resolves. Now are the basics of how to handle it 😛 TAGEND Delete announces that violate relevant rules. Whether it is someone being inconsiderate or pitching their recent Lead Magnet, the affix comes removed as soon as I( or someone on my team) sees it. Many times I am sent links to the annoying post and is necessary to induce the final decision. The station is that we try not to leave questionable poles up for long–often they are only visible for such matters of hours. This remains our weaves healthful and is of the view that safe medium that our members experience. Handle sensitive issues in a private send. If I delete a upright, I generally send the author of the affix a private word and explain why their post was deleted and fix myself available to answer any questions. Ninety percent of the time, they didn’t recognise the latter are separating any rules or they posted in the group by mistake. Be nice, be firm, and make sure they understand that you’re not trying to be want or unjust, you’re exactly deterring the group on topic so that its own experience is better for everyone.

An example of Suzi reaching out to a DM Engage member privately about a rule violation

This also croaks for members who are seeking a resolution to a number of problems with other members.

I always move these speeches to a private message–it establishes the questions my undivided tending and keeps the conversation between me and the involved parties.

The last thing I want to encourage is a public polemic where anyone can weigh in. Situations are much easier to resolve when it is between 1 or 2 beings than between 1 and 11,500 people.

( NOTE: Crave to build a thriving online community that positively affects your business’ bottom line? Become a Certified Community Manager Specialist and taught to leverage Facebook Groups, gatherings, and social scaffolds to build a community that will drive leadings, marketings, and patron patriotism today !)

Get certified as a Community Management Specialist. Learn more!

4. Connect People With ___________

My role as Lead Community Strategist had 3 main functions 😛 TAGEND Connect beings with content Connect people to beings Connect people with makes

The more you make bonds for beings, the more beneficial different groups will be to your customers–and thus the organization.

Here’s an example of me connecting people to content.

An example of Suzi connecting people to content that will answer their question

I actively set aside day each week go to through DigitalMarketer’s content( and believes me, there is a lot of material to go through ): blog affixes, certifications, podcasts…you epithet it. The more familiar I am with our content, the better I can help people in our group.

Here’s how I hinder myself unionized so I can point our group members to the right content( in this case, our blog )…

A Google Sheet Suzi uses to keep track of DigitalMarketer blog content that the community will find useful

The search feature on the working group page is also my best friend–it helps me locate best available members to answer specific questions.

For example, local communities representative was looking for people who live in Thailand to give some recommendations 😛 TAGEND

A DM Engage member reaching out to the community about Thailand for their upcoming business trip

So I only did a speedy research in the group…

Using the search bar in DM Engage

And noticed several people to connect him with!

Answering the member and connecting him with other members who live in Thailand

Lastly, in many cases, DM Engage members ask which of our makes they should acquire to solve an issue they are having.

I’m not a pushy salesman by any stretch–but part of a community manager’s position is to be familiar with your products and services so you can assist with these queries.

Answering a customer about the best products from DigitalMarketer that will help solve their problem

5. Open/ Close Feedback Loops

Effective community management revolves around feedback loops–and these are particularly successful abusing the Facebook calling system.

A flowchart for feedback loops

I persistently keep an eye out for these loops.

There are all kinds of feedback loops-the-loops that occur in the working group: technical curves, customer service curves, content loops … and I can easily calls another crew member to “loop” them into the issue and get a resolution. It’s stellar customer service, plain and simple.

It likewise helps us identify material divergences, concoction spreads, and even possession strategies for our business.

For example, the DigitalMarketer Lab society frequently proposed a referral platform for the product–and within a week of propelling the referral planned, we had over 300 requests to join DigitalMarketer Lab!

The referral program inside DigitalMarketer Lab

That’s the ability of feedback loops.

Here Are the Numbers for DigitalMarketer Engage …

So, how many parties do you need before you launch a private Facebook group?

I hate to be vague, but there is no “magic” number–I would say have a good 1,000 possible members before you look into establishing your online community.

Back when this pole was first published in June 2015, our private Facebook Group for DigitalMarketer Lab had approximately…

12,000 members 50% have joined the private Facebook Group announced DigitalMarketer Engage 19%- 20% of Commit representatives are actively involved in different groups during any established week( the residue don’t stay or, when they do, they just “lurk”)

So, on the basis of these amounts, if you have 1,000 customers you’d was ready to move a group to, you can expect…

500 to join the private group 95 to 100 people to like, observe, share, and otherwise becoming involved in your group during a 7-day date

Our metrics poised now for a while — 50% of compensating members connected the group, and 20% were active overall, and I recommend that brand-new client communities use these as general guidelines when determining best available time to opening their own groups.

However, as DigitalMarketer Engage has been an increase as their home communities, our numbers now gape more like this 😛 TAGEND Over 13,400 compensating representatives 86% have joined the community A continuous 20% of members are active in any presented week

The increase in members who joined the community is evidence of the changes that happen when you actively invest in creating a healthful, fertile seat for your members to connect.

Private online groups are a superb style to add value to customers and satisfy important business goals like shortening indemnities and increasing retention.

Which is why creating a community is so powerful.

( NOTE: Demand to build a thriving online community that positively impacts your business’ bottom line? Become a Certified Community Manager Specialist and learn how to leveraging Facebook Groups, gatherings, and social pulpits to build a community that will drive leadings, marketings, and purchaser allegiance today !)

Get certified as a Community Management Specialist. Learn more!

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