Keep it Fresh

The goal of a search engine is to return the most relevant results to users.

Ravi Sen (2005) explains that search engine optimization (SEO) is where sellers can improve their listings on the search-results pages by modifying their site codes to make them more relevant and therefore more search-engine compatible.

Obviously you can pay to have your website pinned, used paid advertisements and updates to stay at the top of the search engine, however we don’t have to pay for SEO, which is great for us bloggers! The SEO Guide fully outlines professional quality Search Engine Optimization! However, I will just focus on a few key and simple areas to improve on.

This topic is relevant for me as a blogger because I want people to read my posts! Meaning my website needs to come up as a result for relevant search engine queries. So how can I achieve SEO?

Well…. Keywords and the Title of a blog are crucial in SEO. So I will discuss how to best utilize these and then analyse the concept of Freshness in order to make your website more relevant in search engines…


Keywords are the basis for communicating what we are searching for and how we interact with search engines. The engine will match pages to retrieve based on the words that we have entered to search for.

Remember: The order of the words, punctuation, spelling, and capitalization are important as they provide additional information for the engines to help retrieve the right pages and rank them.

To make your page gain a higher ranking you can use the keywords you want to be ranked for frequently in the titles and text. If the keywords used in the search engine are coherent and prominent with your pages content, your page will rank higher.

How to choose your key words: 

You should ask yourself what keywords are relevant to the content on your website/page/post? What keywords will help searches find what they are looking for on your site? Be sure to consider: will they be happy with what they find from their search? Irrelevant or misleading keywords will annoy users and cause them to display negative user behaviour (such as exiting or pressing back), which can lower your websites ranking.

For my Digital Marketing blog it would not be useful to include keywords related to sporting events or cooking recipes.

Which keywords should I use?

Which keywords should I use?!?


The title component of your page needs to an accurate, clear and relevant description of your content.


The title of your page can not be too long as search engines will only display the first 65-75 characters of a title tag in results and are then cut off. Social media sites also have a similar word limit. Keep your titles short and to the point!

However,an especially long keyword phrase or multiple keywords targeted that are necessary to the title tag, may actually require you to have a long title. 


The most important keywords should be placed at the front of the title tag, as the closer to the start they are, the more helpful they’ll be for ranking by search engines and more likely a user will select your page in the results.


You must consider how the keywords reflect your website and the brand you have created. Include your brand name in the title tag to increase brand awareness, attract customers that are familiar with the brand and have people connect to your website, not just a certain page.


Attractive and simple titles are best so readers become interested and also understand what they are going to read. Titles that are too convoluted and abstract, whilst they may seem clever, may not allow readers to find what they are looking for and may confuse them.

Try not to be too wordy: people will get bored easily, but always be informative, engaging and clear.


Obviously just having useful key words and a relevant title is not enough, so you must keep your website fresh! As Google is the search engine used by more than 80% of the population in most countries, this is the search engine I am referring to. They analyses website content based on freshness to deliver the freshest and most relevant content to users (based on the type of query). Singhal describes the types of keyword searches most likely to require fresh content:

  • Recent events or hot topics: Such as a recent natural disaster, current political movement etc… If you have a blog about fashion trends, or follow celebrity news, you have to update content quickly as people are always search for next new and exciting thing to talk about.
  • Regularly recurring events: For instance I will consistently search for information on Manchester United’s fixtures and scores. Maybe you have a blog that recaps and analyzes episodes of the Bachelor each week? Make sure you have the latest scandal and know who did not receive a rose!
  • Frequent updates: This is very important for topics such as cars and technology, for instance Apple are always updating their iphone and people like to have information about the next release and its attributes.

Google measures all of your documents for freshness, then scores each page according to the type of search query. While some queries need fresh content, Google still uses old content for other queries.

Freshness by…

1.  Inception Date

A webpage is given a “freshness” score based on its start date (or when Google becomes aware of the document/page), which decays over time, just like fruit. As the content becomes older, the freshness score will lower and so its ranking on search engines will decrease, meaning newer sites will rank higher just based on this factor.

2. Document Changes (How Much) 

Whilst how new a page is is the most obvious indicator of freshness it is not the only thing to consider. By regularly updating content for search engines will consistently score freshness as there is new relevant information (don’t neglect old posts). For you bloggers out there, it is important to maintain your website and update content to improve your freshness ranking. In saying this, changing a few words or sentence will not have as much impact as an overall site clean up or renewing the body of your post.

3. Rate of Document Change (How Often)

Continuing on from changing content, the more frequently that content is changed the better the freshness score will be than content that rarely changes. Pages that update daily/weekly will have a higher freshness ranking than those that update every few months or even just annually.

4. New Page Creation

It is not just about changing content that is already there, but adding new content is also extremely important. For a blogger this can be adding a completely new post or new branch to your website. To earn a higher freshness score, you should add new pages at a high rate! For instance I am currently updating my blog every 1-2 weeks. Other blog sites on similar topics may add new content every few months.

5. Important Content Changes Matter More

This is pretty self explanatory: content that is more important will have a greater impact on freshness scores so it is important to focus on these areas. This means the content that is at the core of your page; for a blog it would be the main body text, as opposed to the links and advertisements attached to the page.

6. Rate of New Link Growth

This involves more people linking to your webpage, which may indicate to search engines a greater level of relevance and freshness. This may be a blog that many people start following quickly if it is surrounding a particular upcoming event. However, huge increases in rate of growth may be attributed to spam or manipulative link building techniques, which will make search engines devalue the website.

7. Links from Fresh Sites

Your website can increase its freshness by through links from other sites with a high freshness. A link obtained off a fresh page will increase your own freshness by association.

8. Devalue from Changes in Anchor Text

If your website and its content change dramatically over time this will make old ‘anchor texts‘ likely irrelevant as the new anchor text directing to the page will also change. If next year I decided to start blogging about my travels through South America, within my current website, then my old anchor texts will change from digital marketing ones to more relevant ones to the new change in topic. Therefore Google would devalue the older links entirely as the links are no longer relevant to my website.

9. User Behavior

As mentioned earlier, users may exit or press back from your website if your content is not relevant, outdated or does not interest them. If less people are using your site or going on to it before then choosing an alternative site, this will indicate to Google that your website is not relevant (wanted) to users and will decrease the score on your content.

10. New Is Not Always Best

Some older and more authoritative posts may well indeed still be the most relevant and useful for users searches. In fact in certain cases, for well informed pieces, the older the document the better? (Maybe). For the concept of Digital Marketing, older are probably not going to score very highly, as this is an area that is continually developing and is extremely dynamic and fairly new.

For specific historical events this is likely to be a factor though, as it is something that does not continue to change or need to be updated. So a source at the time that was well informed could develop more and more into a trusted source and continue to maintain their ‘freshness’ score in the Google search results.

Follow the link from the image to the right to properly check out the great infographic on content for SEO and some cool statistics!

Stay Fresh

Stay Fresh

What do you do to keep your website ‘Fresh’?

What is another factor you think is more important in Search Engine Optimization?

How do you form keywords in a Search and when do you find it difficult to get relevant content?


I Like Big Data and I Cannot Lie

First, let me show you how big data is shaping the planet and influencing the entire population…


RETAIL Let’s talk about the success of one of my favourite brands: NIKE

Nike revolutionised the apparel industry by using big data as a gateway to an an entirely new market. This was done through their successful launch of Nike+, a platform that allows people to monitor their activity and progress and share achievements with friends, totally transforming the simple sport of running into a ‘data driven pursuit of social standing and a healthier lifestyle’.  Nike is one of the most innovative companies, especially in the retail industry, successfully experimenting with smart technology and big data to gain a competitive advantage with increased data access and connection with consumers.

Check out this video!

Cool right?

So what have they done: The company is an innovator in wearable devices which add a layer of intelligence to items. Using these smart sports devices increases the volume of data and information that Nike can access. This high-value data is used to predict new trends, shifts, niches and gaps in the market. The performance tracking and health monitoring wearbales provide data that is a more sustainable and constant connection to customers as well.

Not only has it revolutionised the retail industry, but big data is helping advancement in all sorts of feilds!..

HEALTHCARE Big data is reshaping many aspects of healthcare, including costs, how patients are diagnosed and treated with evidence based medicine (being more effective and cost-effective), signals and tracking to understand and predict success of medications, mapping and preventing (stopping the spread of) outbreaks, as well as smarter screening, more powerful population management, reduced claims fraud, health plans incenting healthier behaviors, more efficient surgery center operations and over all making healthcare healthier!

SECURITY Big data allows for real-time threat monitoring and automated information collection and intelligence sharing. Essentially once a threat was detected in the intelligence network, systems automatically “go on high alert”. This allows for greater protection, continuous smarter data monitoring and behavioural signals and prevention of data breaches.

DISCOVERY NASA uses big data in their hopes of ‘unlocking the secrets of the universe’, such as how the galaxy was formed at the “cosmic dawn.” They keep hundreds of satellites in the air, apply complex algorithms to data and monitor and store it from various rovers, probes, earth-bound telescopes and observatories around the world to analyse in the future.

ENTERTAINMENT The entertainment industry, is usually based on instinct, such as the music industry. Based on what sounds right, people may be referred to as having ‘a good ear’, meaning an intuitive sense of potential hits and stars or in contrast a flop. With big data, information such as downloads, social commentary, merchandise sales and more are being correlated with data like concert locations and dates and TV appearances etc. Essentially this data removes the guessing work and can understand what would be hot right now or not thanks to evidence based technology.


The digital world seems to be ever expanding and taking over all aspects of life, bringing rise to the term: The Internet of Things (IoT). This is a computing concept that describes a future where everyday physical objects will be connected to the Internet and be able to identify themselves to other devices.

Information technology has transformed in leaps and bounds especially in recent years, allowing for the Big Data movement.

Big data is often associated with new technology companies, as being very technical and specialized, when in fact big data is useful for all companies and especially for understanding the complex nature of consumers (not just who they are, but what about them, what do they want and how do they make decisions and behave).

Big data is important for all businesses in gaining a competitive advantage and to aid success, as well as revolutionizing the world in feilds of science, discvoery, education and entertainment.

Big data may just be seen as another way of saying ‘analytics’, with Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson describing the big data movement as seeking to ‘glean intelligence from data and translate that into business advantage’. However, there are three key differences:

Volume: There is now more data stored every second than there was stored in the entire internet only 20 years ago! Companies can work with many petabytes of data in a single data set, with a petabyte being equivalent to about 20 million filing cabinets worth of text!!

Velocity: This refers to the speed of data creation that now allows companies access to real-time information, which is needed in such a complex, busy and competitive modern world.

Variety:  Big data provides more information that wasn’t previously accessible and takes the form of messages, updates, and images posted to social networks; readings from sensors; GPS signals from cell phones, and more!

So not only is big data referring to the sheer volume of data generated, but to the increasingly sophisticated methods of computer analysis that can be applied to gain insights which can drive efficiency and progress.

Digital based companies that rely on data analytics such as Google, have seen great success from big data and advanced analytics. However, big data is also responsible for many breakthroughs and advancements in various aspects of life as illustrated earlier.

Wearable technology, the way of the future? 

What has Big Data been responsible for influencing in your own life?

What is the biggest contribution Big Data has made to the world so far?

How do you think Big Data will continue to revolutionise the digital world? – What do you hope it will bring?