A goal without a plan is just a wish – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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Win a month of digital marketing!

Small Business Saturday UK is a non-commercial campaign set up in 2013 which highlights small business success in the UK and encourages consumers to ‘shop local’ and support small businesses in the community.

This years event takes place on Saturday 3rd December and to celebrate all the other lovely small businesses in the Bristol area I am offering one lucky company the chance to win a month’s free digital marketing support.

To be in with a chance of winning answer a few short questions on my Google form below.

Good luck!


You may be able to start advertising in Facebook Groups very soon

You may be able to start advertising in Facebook Groups very soon

Facebook has already confirmed that it will reach maximum ad load (the maximum allowable ratio of paid to organic content in a Facebook user’s feed) in mid-2017.  When they get there it could very well mean the company may not accept any more new ads from businesses.

However they have confirmed that they have started testing ads in Groups.

Facebook Groups now have around one billion users and even has its own standalone app making it easy for Admins of community, professional, buy & sell and hobby Groups to manage posts on a daily basis.

The tests are only being carried out in New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Ireland at the moment but I suspect it won’t be very long before it’s rolled out world wide (presumably so they don’t lose any revenue from standard ads!).

Apparently the ads will appear in Group news feeds much the same way as they do now for ads you see in your own personal News Feed.

While this is very good news for advertisers (as they’ll be able to target their ads by Group topics therefore reaching huge numbers of people talking about their products) I wonder how Group admins will feel about having their news feed hacked by companies they may not particularly like.

If you’re an admin of a Group I would LOVE to know your thoughts.



#DMF10MinTip – create your canonical

Don’t worry – it took me quite some time to say this properly too!!

This is probably the quickest but most effective thing you can do for your overall website health.

A definition of Canonicalization from Matt Cutts at Google “It is the process of picking the best url when there are several choices, and usually refers to home pages”.

What does this mean in English?

There are several ways that you can write a website address:


Yes I know what you’re thinking – they’re all the same and go to the same place. For a person yes – but not to a search engine. Technically all of these url’s are different and could show totally different content on each url which gets search engines very confused and cross (and ultimately gives you lower rankings).

So what to do? Pick one format that you’d like to use – either www or non www and update the header section html on your website with the following code:

(you can see here I’ve chosen to go with the non www version)

The version you choose should be the one you think is most important. If you don’t mind then choose that gets the most visitors or has the most backlinks. But choose one and be consistent!

There is very divided advice in the industry about www vs non www and you can read more about it here.

Penguin 4.0 is alive

Penguin 4.0 is alive

Google has confirmed that the latest version of Penguin (which is 4.0) is now live and part of their core algorithm as of 23rd September 2016.

Penguin is the name given to part of the algorithm that deals with web spam – things like keyword stuffing and unnatural link schemes and was first launched in 2012.

What does this mean for a small business’s website? Well not much if you have high quality content that doesn’t repeat your target keywords lots and lots (like this screenshot from Google):

Penguin Keyword Stuffing






Or this example of totally unnatural links (see the links to loans in an article about getting fit):

Link spam example






While these are extreme examples think about your site – do you link out to any other websites that have absolutely nothing to do with your business area? Are there more than one or two links on each page?

If not you should be in pretty good shape to not be affected by Penguin 4.0.

If you’ve seen a dip in your SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages) I’d love to hear from you!