Kevin Gibbons is founder and CEO of Re:signal – a strategy-driven SEO and content marketing agency in London.
Winner of 15x UK/EU Search Awards, he was named search personality of the year at the UK Search Awards (2018) and listed in BIMA’s top 100 people shaping the digital industry (CEO and leaders category) in 2019.
He has helped to grow Re:signal into a fast growth digital marketing agency, as recognised by Deloitte Fast 50 UK & EMEA (2017) and the FT 1000 fastest growing companies in Europe (2018). Working with clients including Expedia, Auto Trader, Pottery Barn and Deloitte.
Kevin has spoken at over 100 events internationally over the last 10 years, including; Search Marketing Expo (SMX), Pubcon, ClickZ / SES, BrightonSEO, SAScon, State of Search, Reykjavik Internet Marketing Conference (RIMC), Content Marketing Association (CMA), Performance Marketing Insights, SEMCamp and many more…
Columnist writer at Econsultancy, Search Engine Watch, The Drum, Fast Company and Search Engine Land. Judge at US / MENA Search Awards, The Drum Content Awards and DADI Awards.
At the start of March, Paul Martin (Global Retail Lead & UK Head of Retail at KPMG) kindly joined me for a video interview to talk about the trends of the UK retail sector since we last discussed the topic in early 2022. In this interview, Paul and I looked back at how the UK retail sector fared in 2022, amid a number of unique market challenges. We also discussed the main category movements witnessed so far in 2023, and provided a forecast for the next 12 months of trading!
This will be hosted at the stunning Ham Yard Hotel, and we’ve been working very hard to secure what is an incredible line-up of 15 speakers, 5 breakout session leaders, 4 moderators, 1 emcee and a partridge in a pear tree…
I genuinely believe we’ve curated the conference line-up of our dreams, and we’re very proud to share this with you.
Rory Sutherland: I first saw Rory speak live at an A4U Affiliate Marketing event about 12 years ago. I’m showing my age a little here… At the time, it was the best talk I’ve even seen live, he was captivating. It still hasn’t been topped yet!
This is a topic which I feel agencies and brands alike are perhaps never the biggest fan of, but it can play an important role, especially for larger enterprises, in order to select the best partner to help support your objectives.
We’ve just updated our eCommerce SEO Report based on Sistrix organic visibility data, showing which brands have seen visibility changes in 2022, and providing a look back at how industry trends and challenges have impacted the market over the last 12 months.
I recently interviewed Paul Martin from KPMG to discuss the market movement and industry trends we have seen so far in 2022. It’s been fascinating to see how the sector has had to navigate through a huge range of obstacles, including geopolitical and macroeconomic. pressures, supply chain problems, and the cost-efficiency agenda. During this time we’ve seen lots of fluctuation in the visibility within a number of categories. We’ve picked out some eye-catching insights below.
Last week, Paul Martin, Global Retail Lead & UK Head of Retail at KPMG kindly joined me for a video interview to talk about the trends of the retail sector since we last discussed this in 2020, what’s to come in 2022 and where we should be focusing our attention/efforts in order to be successful.
Key themes retailers need to focus on:
1: Geopolitical implications and COVID-19 impact
COVID-19 is still affecting large parts of the world, especially Asia –
We’ve just updated our travel SEO report, based on Sistrix organic visibility data, in order to show the latest trends from Jan 2022, and look back at progress over the last 12 months.
We launched the report in March 2021, and during that time the trends show packages and travel guides have seen the slowest growth / the biggest declines. Whilst transport, hotels + flights are increasing in visibility.
Tripadvisor.co.uk have maintained a clear lead in organic visibility, despite a dip which has recently started to recover.
Expedia has seen the biggest drop in organic visibility (58%), which takes them from 3rd to 5th overall.
Tripadvisor.com, Trivago and Travelsupermarket all drop out of the top 10. Replaced by Hotels.com, Skyscanner and British Airways.
Hotels.com have grown by 52% and are the biggest winners (based on visibility points increased over the last 12 months).
Transport sites (TFL and National Rail) have performed well, which possibly indicates a reflection with increased search demand on 2021 vs 2020.
Equally, flights have seen a big increase (EasyJet and British Airways both increasing their visibility).
Within packages, it’s interesting to see a comeback for the relaunched Thomas Cook, alongside increases for TUI, Love Holidays and IHG (hotel group).
Expedia has seen a significant drop in organic visibility (58%) over the last 12 months.
TripAdvisor despite retaining a strong position as market leaders, have seen the 2nd biggest drop when you combine their .co.uk and .com domains.
This appears to be a trend across price comparison OTAs, with Trivago, Booking.com, Lastminute.com, Kayak, and On the Beach struggling too.
It also wasn’t a great year for content sites / guides, with Lonely Planet seeing a large drop, as did Culture Trip and Trip Savvy.
Within specific categories, you can see the progress vs closer competitors for each brand.
Flights: you can see Sky Scanner and British Airways have started to pull away from the rest of the pack a little:
Hotels: you can see Hotels.com have performed very well, whilst Trivago have struggled. IHG have gained visibility recently:
Packages: the whole category has struggled to grow.Booking.com have dropped but retain their position as clear market leaders. Expedia have the biggest drop, which has seen LastMinute.com overtake them and TUI close the gap.
Luxury: interestingly, Kuoni who have always been very dominant in this category have significantly dropped in organic visibility. Audley and Trail finders have closed that gap now, in what could be an important year for luxury, seeing there are many predictions of people going / spending big in 2022:
Content strategy is a hugely important part of the SEO process. Quite often it’s not given the level of attention it deserves, but done right it can be a significant driver of organic revenue and customer acquisition.
To create an SEO data-driven content strategy that works, we need to understand what good content looks like. To do that we need to look at data and conduct research. It sounds time-consuming and expensive, which might put many businesses off. But actually, you can create an SEO data-driven content strategy in just 3 steps.
When we talk about SEO, we used to work on the principle that creating content was about making it work for Google. That meant content that was littered with keywords, known as keyword stuffing, and didn’t necessarily provide any value to its readers. As long as it was on topic, it ranked.
But now it’s about creating content for people. Content needs to answer questions, provide content, be accurate, and add value. It should still have the essence of keywords, but you can’t just take a keyword and hire a copywriter on the cheap anymore. It’s all about quality – creating quality content that is accurate and adds real value. And that doesn’t come cheap, you need to invest in it.
Why Invest in Your Content
Creating content needs investment to make an impact. But when it comes to it being part of an SEO strategy, it feels like the content is under-rated and under-invested.
It seems like SEOs and marketers are aware of the value of content. If you look at our LinkedIn poll of where people see the best results from their efforts, we can see that 50% of us get the best results from content rather than technical SEO or digital PR. But this isn’t reflected when we think about where our businesses spend their marketing budgets.
We need to address this problem of under-investment in content for SEO because the benefits are endless. Even without any extra search traffic, the pay-off of additional content could be significant. Creating content can drive better user metrics, more clicks, and can also support the traffic you drive from your other marketing channels like social media and email. But if you can level up and create high-quality content that provides better information than your competitors and attract better user metrics, the benefits are even greater. Your content will be more likely to outrank your competitors in the SERPs, giving you the potential to gain additional impressions, increased clicks, and ultimately more conversions. That is without considering the benefit your content can have on your other SEO efforts, like generating backlinks.
So investing in the right quality of content should pay for itself several times over. But we still see that most of SEO spend goes on fixing technical aspects of a website (page speed, structured data, etc.) or on link acquisition and PR to improve authority and brand reputation. But why are we consistently overlooking the importance of having a strong content strategy and delivery plan?