Category Archives for "blog"

SEO Experience

Daryl Cygler, owner of DC Digitas


Have recently stepped away from the professional agency life, but still looking to be involved with SEO & digital marketing.

I was working for Jellyfish Digital Marketing Agency, one of the top tier UK digital marketing agencies from 2011 to the start of 2015 as a SEO & Social Manager. At my peak, I was managing SEO client campaigns with monthly billings of £60,000 plus in revenue.

My rate card was £100 per hour ($150 USD) and we always delivered value and a return on that investment.

It was a joy and pleasure to work for Jellyfish, both internally with my colleagues and friends but also in respect to the clients we served. Good memories.

Here is a list of some of the clients I have served on an agency and private basis.

As good as it was I have now decided to step away from it and follow my own business interests. I am taking the extensive digital marketing experience and applying it to a traditional bricks and mortar business model. It is going to be an exciting journey and I am sure a prosperous one. Everyone needs to follow their own path and mine has just begun.

That said I still have a passion for SEO, so it is with one eye forward and one ear to the ground that I am always on the lookout for new clients. Let me be clear here, it is not about growing my own digital agency, no it is about me doing this because I still enjoy it.

I get a buzz out of SEO and fixing sites to make their visibility and traffic increase. It is an old cliche but now it is not about quantity, it is about quality.

I definitely bring value and it is that value I want to establish for a few select clients. What areas of digital marketing and SEO is that value defined in?

  • SEO Management
  • Technical SEO
  • International SEO
  • Video Optimisation
  • Image Optimisation
  • Social Engagement and Monitoring
  • Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager
  • Google Shopping Ads & Feed Optimisation
  • Conversion Rate Optimisation

Whilst value is clearly one of the major fundamentals of business for me, it is more about building long term relationships and delivering on client expectations. So let me be your SEO and Social Manager today!

So what does an SEO & Social Manager do?

• Supports and leads a SEO & Social team on an ongoing basis.
• Reporting to heads of departments.
• Collaboration with internal specialists such as SEO engineers and copywriters to facilitate the delivery of client or internal projects.
• Produce & manage keyword research, technical, content, link and social audits – analysis and documentation.
• Make recommendations to clients regarding optimisation, or implement directly when appropriate.
• Guide and partake in offsite activity such as authority optimisation and link generation.
• Work closely with internal Account Directors’ and Account Managers’ to develop integrated digital strategies.
• Project managing activity and processes required to effectively run SEO & Social campaigns.
• Producing client-facing reports, studies and presentations to brand standards.
• Increasing my own and the client’s knowledge in the field of SEO & Social Media.
• Working closely with the Heads of Departments to plan natural search campaign strategies and deliver excellent SEO service to clients.
• Nurture and develop relationships with clients for the day-to-day requirements of search campaigns.
• Analysing the performance of campaigns, identifying strategic opportunities, facilitating change in order to hit and exceed client expectations and KPIs.
• Provide SEO training to internal teams and clients.
• Stay abreast of industry trends and all applicable technologies, including developments in – SEO, social media, PPC, analytics, online marketing, E-commerce and online consumer behaviour. less

Technical SEO

Technical SEO if implemented right can be a massive quick win. More so than what any link acquisitions may achieve. Done wrongly it can be devastating for a site’s SEO visibility.

A technical SEO audit and recommendations can increase SEO visibility up to 15-20% once implemented. This is not unusual if a site exists in a poor state of affairs. All too often the focus is around the aesthetics and creative appeal of a site rather than the SEO migration protocol or technical aspects. Don’t be one of those webmasters that suffer because of it.

technical seo data on errors
An example below of how Technical SEO can go wrong and right for a site.

International SEO

Brands which are expanding and are having an international presence with a diverse range of customer groups. With international expansion comes a need to achieve the most impact within a targeted region.

The management and marketing departments will have their own strategic approach to achieve this but it is how you align that from an SEO perspective so that you don’t lose your:

  • Visibility in your target region and language group.
  • Appeal to your target audience in your targeted region.
  • Ability to avoid search engine penalties

Video Optimisation

Before the video snippets update of July 2014, I could rank a hosted video snippet for all of my clients.

video optimisation for FES TANKS

What is the difference between a hosted video snippet and a YouTube snippet?  When it was a hosted video snippet the click of the user would go straight through to the webpage hosting the video as opposed to YouTube. It was a really targeted way of

  1. Standing out on the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) landscape
  2. Deliver targeted search traffic from a video snippet result to a specific web page. 100% relevance and more engaging from a users perspective.

Video snippets on the SERP landscape have changed with 82% of results now favouring YouTube videos.

Videos Appear for 55% of Google Keyword Searches: 82% of Results From YouTube

That is fine, as SEO evolves so does the approach to deliver visibility and traffic.

Given the current SERP landscape for video snippets, YouTube videos are now favoured as a platform and with the right approach they to can be ranked to a keyword target. That said not all video should be pushed through YouTube by default, other platforms offer keyword rich and schema mark-up that surpass YouTube for on-page value.

Your video content and audience will determine your placement and distribution strategy. Get in touch to discuss.

Image Optimisation

Image optimisation is an area of SEO that clients fall to exploit with massive opportunities for big wins. Images are playing more and more into what was the traditional SERP landscape.

Also, lots of social platforms are now implementing more rich media so as the enhance the user experience. Ultimately images allow us to digest a theme quicker, the intention is to capture the user with a special image and that image once optimised can appear in multiple social platforms not just in the traditional SERPS.

Images with the social sphere are equally important. Image optimisation includes tagging shareable images on-page and off-page so as to preview an image to accompany a social update.

I will work with your developers to ensure the correct implementation of social cards so as when social updates are done images are integrated seamlessly in the content delivery.

Social Engagement and Monitoring

Social platforms have the ability to drive masses of traffic to your website. If a particular piece of content has the attributes that connect with your audience there is every chance they will naturally want to share it.

Humans by our social nature like to share content that informs, educates or provokes an emotional response. It is these social interactions that enable opportunities to understand and address an audience.

  • Social and SEO synergy processes are virtuous and reinforce each other in research, content creation and promotion.
  • SEO campaigns can get added traction through the social nature of sharing. The social voice of a campaign can lead to more exposure and more opportunities for engagement. Increased engagement often leads to a greater chance of successful link acquisitions.
  • Social monitoring in the first instance helps a business understand the conversational landscape within a particular area of interest. By mapping these conversations it helps with brainstorming and generation of content creation. Content creation that addresses the need to answer questions or inform.
  • Brand monitoring is another great example on identifying what people are saying online about your business.  Do you actively listen to what customers and 3rd parties are saying about your brand? You may be surprised.

Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager

The first thing that attracted me to online marketing was the ability to obtain and analyse data. I had a five year stint in food retailing and sometimes my marketing and advertising efforts were really hard to measure and gauge success on. That was in comparison to the level of spend i had committed.

I still remember my first viewing of a Google Analytic’s dashboard, my world and mind just exploded with excitement. Excitement at being able to measure and benchmark every action.

Suddenly this was hard data that could help you understand what worked and what didn’t. Google Analytics is still my preferred platform of choice in understanding online performance.

Reading any web analytics platform comes down to three fundamental principles. I call it the “ABC Attribution Model”.

A – Audience & Acquisition

B – Behaviour

C – Conversions

How you acquire users, their demographics and location, behaviour on your site after acquisition, and their conversion patterns. Understand all these aspects in synergy and you better understand your website and the user journey it delivers for your visitors.

Held a Google Analytics Individual Qualification which was completed once in 2011

Google Tag Manager is a great platform that allows snippets of code to be implemented without the constant need for developers. So as an example, you would place Google Tag Manager (GTM) code on your site once, then be able to add supporting GA code easily and instantly from that point on. Works equally well for other software snippets of code that needs to be added for tracking purposes or integration.

If you are looking for GTM or GA integration on your site as well as data discovery and user insights, please get in touch to discuss.

Google Shopping Ads & Feed Optimisation

SEO BRAGGING RIGHTS – Once had the first 64 pages of organic listings on Google Shopping for a HUGE high volume generic keyword. This was also strengthened with position 1 listings for product modifiers attached to the top generic keyword. They were good days.

screenshot of when we ranked for the first 64 pages of SERP

The organic shopping ecosystem has now evolved into a paid model.

What is interesting is that the paid model is still underpinned by a similar data specification and feed structure from the old organic days. So it is with great insight that I am able to apply historic understandings to the paid version of Google Shopping.

Whilst being a paid model, bids, visibility, tracking and money can be lost with under optimised shopping feeds. Let me optimise your Google Product Listing Shopping ads for maximum exposure.

Conversion Rate Optimisation

Conversion Rate Optimisation or CRO is very much part of digital marketing and in particular SEO.

Google understands the time a user spends on a webpage having come from the search results. If a user should bounce (exit) from that webpage back to the search results straight away, Google feels the result did not deliver a good user experience and as such may not have the relevance for that particular search term. This lack of relevance, user experience and time spent on a page can all impact on rankings for webpages.

SEO can deliver users to a page, however, it is the on-page experience that determines if a conversion takes place. All marketing activity being constant and changing nothing else except on-page aspects to influence conversions, imagine if you were able to convert an additional 1% of visitors. That would be a massive increase in revenue straight up.

I look to structure webpages with SEO best practices in mind but the need also exists for CRO best practices to provide a better user experience and deliver key metrics (goals, conversions) from a business perspective.

It is the consideration of both aspects that make for a big sky thinking SEO consultant.

Don’t want to lose the opportunity to get SEO? Click here to learn more.

Back to the Top

How to Rank a Potato on Page 1 for “Gaming Console”

Potato Gaming Console

Using Reddit to Rank a Potato on Page 1 of Google across the World.

A recent Reddit callout has been able to rank a potato image on page 1 of Google across multiple geographic locations all due to the power of the community driving the viral nature of the thread.

Reddit the self-pronounced “front page of the web” has been a massive platform for users from the early years of the web. Its community is vast and spans multiple intertest and following all contained within subreddits. These subreddits all contain strict protocols and procedures which strictly administer the moderator gatekeepers. Cross them at your peril.

Content shared within these reddit thread have the ability to go viral within the space of a very short time given the nature of the community. Sometimes threads started within a subreddit break mainstream and make it on to the front page due to the sharing nature of the post. I think you get the picture it is an incredibly powerful platform from a community perspective. The power and voice of Reddit also seem to feed outwardly with Google news syndication Reddit posts into its news platform.

A recent dare (experiment) by DANNYonPC has shown exactly how the power of Reddit can influence Google and not necessary in a relevant way. Danny posted a thread that was bound to get a response.


The challenge originally was to show (rank) the potato within image search for ‘Gaming Console’. In fact, within 9 hours of the post going live it had over 4126 upvotes with over 480 comments from people enjoying the thread. Some have shown great passion around the cause and from an SEO’s perspective, the thread has shown great relevance to the cause, especially these contributions.

All in jest, but you could argue, totally on topic.

As I said before, the dare was originally posted with the intention to rank the potato within the image search feature, however, it has gone one better and is now sitting proudly at the top of page 1 of Google due to it being syndicated via the Google News platform.

United States

Potato gaming console on reddit US

Lets all rejoice the power of people and potatoes.

No doubt really given that the US of A is the home of the Reddit platform. My curiosity drove me to check what was going on globally, assuming each countries news stories are underpinned by local content not just global events.

I have checked globally via local proxies and this is how it stands within the major countries for Google.

United Kingdom

Potato gaming console on reddit UK


Potato gaming console on reddit AU


Potato gaming console on reddit DE

Changed my browser language settings so as to be totally German. No spuds…..


Potato gaming console on reddit SE

Changed my browser language settings so as to be totally Swedish. No spuds…..

Changed my browser language settings so as to read English content. Bingo POTATO…..


Potato gaming console on reddit fr

In fact to save you the pain of duplication I observed the same results with the French search results as well. Local language browser settings turned on, no potato, English language turned on, potato identified.

That single Reddit thread had the power to be syndicated across multiple regions within the news feature, on page 1. POWERFUL STUFF

What i find interesting is that Google is syndicating Reddit post in the first instance. Does it potentially syndicate the platform as a whole? I can understand the principle behind it because sometimes articles will appear first on Reddit before anywhere else and from that gain a viral nature to them. But Reddit also has an anti-establishment nature to it and if a practical joke is going to be had, it will also be launched on Reddit, as the potato gaming console demonstrates.

In fact, it has been taken to a rather sinister level because now people are trying to rank a Nazi flag for the term ‘COMCAST’ and the upvotes are pouring in.

potato reddit nazi

Don’t think this one will work…….

Overall, jokes aside this has reinforced yet again how powerful Reddit is and the influence it can have from an SEO perspective.

Reddit needs to be part of your SEO Strategy.

PS. When the POTATO gaming console is launched please let me know where I can get one, they look “AWESOME”.