November 18, 2022

Series: Evolving The Mawla Website - Entry 2 Progress.


Entry 2 - The Problem

Mawla is a Digital agency, as part of this series we're going to document the process of evolving and upgrading our website.

We're going to run through the SEO, Content, Web Design and development problems we've encountered and how we approach them for clients.

0: Hey, so welcome to entry number two in the progress

on upgrading, uplifting the Mawla websites.

I think I'm doing more than just uplifting the website in my current process.

I'm also trying to improve the business plan and just generally sort of holistically

strengthen our marketing and sales presence.

I might go into that a little bit more further down the track.

But for now, let's look at some of the progress that we've made in

the site. So I am going to roughly run through

these topics. So recapping on the

last video I really pointed out sort of some of the

problems that were coming across. Those problems generally came down

to our sort of weak seo, came down to some technical difficulties that

we were encountering, like just missing features in the website.

And then, yeah,

there's a whole lot of other stuff you're interested to go back and watch

that one.

0: We have made a lot of progress since then,

which is great to see. I'd love to hear the opinions of other agency

owners, but Q4 of last year was quite slow,

especially sort of December. I think that's not too crazy,

like a lot of people are probably thinking about wrapping up initiatives rather than

starting new initiatives, but it was quite slow. But then moving into q1,

now we're starting to see a lot of traffic. We're starting to like actual

like site traffic, but we're also starting to get a lot more leads,

which is great. The sources of the leads is still a bit of a

mixed bag. Like what I'm really trying to push on here in

this sort of topic is pushing on organic inbound SEO from

like blog content, from website content,

that sort of thing. But we are still sort of seeing good traffic come

in from review sites like Clutch from partner agencies,

that sort of stuff.

0: So one of the big things that we did just

sort of finishing up last year was I engaged with copy

and content specialist. Shout out to Carrie,

what is your website? It is got Save the serp.

So shout out to Carrie. Carrie is from Belfast living in

Barcelona and she's a traffic content and just sort of copywriting

magician. So we started working together and I asked so

I sat down a whole heap of goals. You know what we've already spoken

about. It's the, the, the purpose is to communicate

better with the customers, describe what we do better engage people.

So it wasn't just you know,

blog content that we were focused on. It was also website content.

Cuz in the last site last video I mentioned,

you know, like our header on the website didn't make a huge amount of


0: Now we have a snappy new one. You don't want a website,

I don't want a website. What I'm here for a website.

So we got a whole heap of stuff.

So one that cool little stuff reminder is from

you don't want the website. So Carrie's thoughts on that is that when you

do something like a pattern interrupt, it makes people see something negative and it

sort of, it stops and makes them think this is

like the first draft of the copy that we were working on,

but the draft before that.

So when we spoke let's see,

does it actually say what the problems that I wanted to attack are boo

boo boo boo boo, okay.

So you can't create new

copy. You can't, you know what, actually just to stop people getting distracted,

you can't create new copy.

You can't get closer to your customers.

0: You can't market unless you know who are you talking to.

So finding your niche and trying to understand the problems your niche

is experiencing is super important. So we up for the last two

years or so, a huge part of the business model has been working with

other agencies. So we call that sort of targeting the fishermen rather than the

fish. Because it is hard when you're starting a business or

starting a new business model, which is what we are doing, it's hard to

go directly to consumer or to customer because you don't have the infrastructure,

you don't have the confidence, you don't have the reputation

yet you don't have that sort of stuff. So what we wound up doing

instead was working with a lot of partners and that worked great

at the time, but as the business grows,

you need to scale and you need to start going direct to customers.

0: So like that,

sorry my brain turned off for a second there.

So the niche, so when we were going originally just to other

agencies, the niche was just other agencies and it was sort of up to

we got a mixed bag of different customers coming in.

We still get somewhat of a mixed bag, but we are trying to focus

in on niches that we know we can do a lot of good

for. And one of the big niches that we wanna focus in on is

mark B2B SaaS is one of the big ones that we wanna focus in

on because we feel we can do an awful lot for them. But like

essentially marketing websites are our niche.

Marketing websites focused on creating conversions and

focused on sort of describing a product,

describing a a service marketing it through content and

creating sort of funnels that make it easy to understand what you're doing,

nurture leads, and then actually get them to turn into market qualified leads or

sales qualified leads.

0: So that is our niche.

And the first part of this like brand cookbook,

the brand cookbook essentially is if you want to create copy,

if you want to create content you sort of need to know who

is your niche and you need to know their struggles and you need to

know your tone of voice, you need to know all that sort of stuff

if you wanna start creating content. And this cookbook essentially is sort of our

like brand bible when it comes to content and copywriting.

So it sort of describes here. So if I'm a new copywriter joining the

team, I come here and I'd be able to understand, you know,

who is the core audience, head of marketings at b2b,

SaaS, real estates, that sort of thing, additional people that might be involved in

the buying process, cto, CEO or founder.

0: What are their pain points, what are their limitations?

That sort of stuff. This is super valuable because it gives you stuff to

begin the to begin sort of the thinking process for

creating the content for your site, for creating sort of just like landing pages

and even structuring your service. I'm gonna get my big face out of the

way here so you can see the rest of the table of contents here.

But it goes through what are the desires,

what are they what are our goals,

what are the customer's goals as well? And then there's some really cool stuff


testimonials and stuff, which is super handy to be able to pull out if

you're creating like a landing page, you're creating an outbound email,

that sort of thing. Having this for content people to drag from is a

really great thing to have.

0: So this,

that was the first thing we did. And a big part of that was

customer interviews, so speaking to actual customers of ours.

So that's where all these testimonials come from. But speaking to the team as

well, speaking to my own team,

speaking to people we work with,

that is where we sort of started from the brand cookbook.

And it, it already has been super useful because we've,

we're doing Upbound emails we're gonna start doing like blog posts and copywriting

and it just gives everyone like a shared resource that they can sort of

say like what way does Mawla talk? What have past clients said?

What are their struggles? You know, what do we start to like focus the

content creation around? So that brings us to

copywriting, which I sort of jumped a tiny bit ahead,

which showing you this page, but copywriting essentially now pulls

from that brand cookbook but starts to describe what is it that we do.

0: Here you can see sort of like what the nav bar might look like

and you can see over here like roughly the table of contents of what

we do. So there's

a lot here and there's a lot of like deep thinking coming in here

from Carrie as well. On what way to describe our service,

how to get people to stop and actually read it prove

our value. Describe the actual like individual

services that we have. Does

a lot in there. It's already starting to be reflected on the

site now. We haven't done any development work on this yet,

so it's really just pulling over what we can and what fits into the

current format. But I think it already describes what we do a little bit

better. It describes who you are,

what are your problem points. Here are some of our services

testimonials. Like there's some really good feedback on testimonials,

trying to break them up into individuals per page rather than into sliders

of testimonials. So that is what

we've done so far from a content brand co sort

of cookbook and copywriting. The other big thing that we are doing

is around SEO and what

is your website Luke?

Write fits. So my good friend Luke here,

is it gonna be a lovely picture of you?

0: It is. Luke is great. He's great.

What a lovely man. Luke is helping us

figure out what, ah,

f**k. Hang on. I'm gonna need to pause and find this document.

Okay, we are back. So Luke and

myself started to look at our traffic.

We started to look at some of the research that Carrie and Natalie had

already done around the target market,

around the ICP and around sort of their problems.

And we started to try to figure out like when people are searching for

these problems, what are the like keyword topics or pillars that

they start to think around. And then we from

that started to pull out sub topics

or sub keywords. So this, there's a co concept of like topic and cluster.

So you can see, let me see here's the keyword and here's

a whole heap of clustery stuff around those keywords.

This isn't particularly meant for human consumption.

But from there you get titles for potential content

written around those keywords and topics.

Let me see if I can get something a little bit better here.

SaaS SEO services, that might be better.

Nope. SaaS web development.

0: Sure. Yeah, that's not too bad. So if I was looking for,

if I was a marketer looking for a SaaS web development,

you can see the volume of searches which is super low.

So that makes that a bad search. Hold on, let's go back.

Web development maybe fork.

Okay, great. What you wanna look at when you're looking for keywords is both

the volume, the competitiveness of that keyword.

So how many other people are ranking for that sort of keyword?

What's the intent that goes along with it? This one's a little bit funny

because there's multiple intents and the tools that you use for gathering these keywords

don't always figure the intent out correctly.

So what Luke is doing here is pulling out like an importance index,

which is using some, I don't think it shows you the formula here,

but there's some magic that shows you volume competitiveness.

0: Cost per click is another really good indicator and then just sort of says

like, should you be interested in this or not?

So you can see web developer, we want to bid for that.

We probably won't win on those sort of things cuz they're super vague.

But if you pick web developer as a keyword,

you can then go into clusters below it. So that's one of the places

that we started for SEO and we

end up pulling out topics. So web development being the topic,

some of the keywords below it, you can then go into web development companies

keywords below it. And then we went and pulled that all into

s SCM rush. So that was good and a bad day.

Good in that we now have loads of keywords in here.

Bad in that our visibility dropped significantly.

Let's see if it actually shows us that it

probably won't cuz it's now tracking visibility against stuff that actually matters.

0: You can see I've got some other people in the similar,

in a similar niche here, so I can sort of track how we compare

some very lovely websites.

No, so it's not gonna show me what it was previously,

but our visibility was high because we were tracking against wrong keywords that nobody

was searching for. So it doesn't really matter if we have high visibility,

it doesn't actually equate to people getting to the site,

but at least now we are measuring against stuff that we care about.

So as we start to create content, create back links upgrade

our copy, get more traffic, become a little bit more authoritative in the domain,

we'll start to see this visibility rise. You

can see that we are in one to three for some keywords,

but those keywords I think have low volume like JAMstack

website, b2b, sas, yay, you were number one.

But it has less than 1% visibility.

Woo. One cool thing

here that we've started to see over time,

let's see if I can just jump back to our site.

And this was one of the things that was nice to see in the

last video was that yes,

we goed the sas this SEO

over the last year or so,

but we're starting to see it come roaring back,

which is just super because there's nothing worse than

going into one of these consoles and seeing,

0: Let me just see, seeing dips like this, like that was just tragic.

But you can see over the last 16 months,

like we had a pretty good average of 200 to 300,

never really sort of topping four. Oh, we got four there for a few

days, but you can see now we're starting to rise up and it looks

like we're averaging out now at sort of the 500 to peaking 600 range,

which is great. And the clicks are clicks is,

looks a little weird in anywhere here,

but you can see it's up and down.

It's pretty good though. Analytics

actually look, analytics are sort of never

the most appealing to look at, but let's see if we can hope.

I'm not gonna go to today because we're not gonna have any traffic today

yet. Hey, stuff is happening,

we're getting some direct traffic,

some referral traffic, some search traffic. It's still not

enormous because we still are like we're appearing and we're getting impressions,

but we're not yet at the point where we're in the like top five

for a lot of them. So we're on the page,

we just need to rise up a little bit more before we start to

see the actual onsite traffic improve. But progress is being made.


0: Brand copywriting, seo, what is next for the ci?

What are we thinking about next? So there's

a heap of things in no particular order here that I'm starting to think

about. One of the ones is that I want to have in our CMS

a lot more content types that are specific to the niche of agency

websites. So if you jump

to our website CMS right now,

you'll see that it's mainly just pages now footer,

that sort of stuff. But it's not laid out in terms of projects,

case studies, services, FAQs or anything that's like app structured content piece that

we could pull to a higher level and reuse across the site.

Even when it comes to our blogs,

resources, white papers, those aren't yet available in

the version of the CMS that we are using now.

We do

0: Have that in many of our newer sites and we do have it in

our demo sites that anyone can go and play around with.

Like if you go to Knowledge hub or yeah,

knowledge hub is probably the best one. You can see that the,

we now have all those different content types, which makes it easy to know

where to put something when you're building it and it's also structured in a

way that makes it easy to fill in the right fields.

So pulling a lot of this stuff over is gonna make our life a

whole heap easier once we get there. You can see two client examples.

Here's a marketing site based around people,

offices, jobs, and then here's a

law firm. So it based around attorneys, staff members and stuff,

but it just makes it a little bit clearer where you put what.

0: I wanna go deeper on HubSpot and forms.

Like right now our site actually is starting to get into a pretty good

place when it comes to forms. So to create a form,

I just have to go in here, I click new and then I just

throw in the ID of a HubSpot form and then we have this

sort of UI and we can style it whatever way we want.

I haven't gone super deep on our site on it just yet,

but it means that you're able to create like a contact us,

you can create different forms for different use cases.

You can create lead magnets like eBooks or just for contacts,

which is really handy. I think there's more

that we can do there. So right now our site is directly connecting to

HubSpot. I'd love to put that through some

third party marketing tech like or something.

So we could add like lead enrichment so we can send the source to

maybe our Slack and to HubSpot and just

to do sort of cooler stuff like that because then that means that like

from a no code point of view, you're able to add a lot more

to just like a simple lead.

You could add more like right now somebody signs up for Contact Us,

we, they would get a response email, which is cool,

but we could probably make that even richer if we could get some personalization

about them.

0: Boo boo boo. We are going to do design sprints to think a little

bit more about the structure of our site to think about some of the

visual elements of it as well. I think the nav bar for example

could do with a lot of love. As I said,

we're on an older version of the cms so I wanna bring that up

to the newest version, which is gonna mean that we'll get a lot more

speed. We'll be able to stick with new features that we roll out to

the engine as well. Our content right now,

this is both a technical thing and just from,

for copywriting in general, we don't have as much content split

across the funnel as I'd like and we don't have any way to visualize

it in the c m s just yet.

0: So I would love as we write a new blog people to tag it

as like top of the funnel, bottom of the funnel. So somebody coming in

would know what campaign or what type of user the content is aimed at.

Obvious stuff around blogs, being able to search,

categorize all that stuff. Yeah,

and there's a whole heap of other stuff that we wanna do here.

This site map page is actually a really good one that Luke mentioned.

To have a page that is just links to all the pages.

So like right now we only

have like a site map xml, so just having a page that was like

site map and was just a load of pages,

it just makes it easier for crawlers and stuff to wander around or even

for us when we lose track of a page and don't know how to

navigate to it. And then just having better control of the h

elements of this site. So those are a whole heap of

the features we wanna do. One cool feature that

I wanted to just give a little highlight to,

oh, there's two, hold on, I'll be back to you in one second.

0: I wanted to show you another feature,

but it actually has loads of client info and it,

and I can't get it out. So let's just look at the other feature.

So big one that I've used to get us back into good shape

visually has be like visually on the site and also from like just site

structure has been presets. So presets is a thing that we use to let

you set up a module in a particular way and then reuse it across

the site. So let's see what's one that I've been using a lot.

0: Almost all of our pages were missing some call to action at the end.

So like book a marketing success workshop or sign up for our

newsletter. We were missing that on so many sites.

So I just built one preset and it meant that's just a screenshot that

I messed up. It meant that we are able to now go across all

the pages and just drop the preset in and then it's just done.

Which is so handy and you can even preview what that fella looks like.

So it'll look a little bit better than that screenshot.

Boom. So what does that look like in reality?

So one silly thing that we had done was loads of our blog posts

did not have links to other blog posts.

So the blog posts were pretty much just black holes of content.

So I was able to go in to pretty much every blog post and

drop in a feed of you might also like,

which is some other blog posts, a form to sign

up for the newsletter. And then also a,

if you don't want the newsletter, maybe you want a marketing conversation,

0: Scrolling, scrolling, scrolling. Here's the preset for that.

You might also like then your newsletter and then success plan.

So like if I wanted to do that again, I'd just go modules.

Do I wanna build one from scratch? No, I don't have time,

but I would like to pull out one that's already configured,

that's someone who knows more than me configured or someone who have more time

than me and I'd just be able to drop into the page.

So for example, I wanna drop in like a example some of our work

and that's gonna go down the bottom and there you go,

slider of some of our work. But I actually don't want that so I'm

just gonna remove it and you get to see it all happen in near

real time. Real time. Okay,

so that's roughly where we are right now.

So the next pieces that I want to do going onwards is going to

be bringing us back up to speed with the en up to speed with

the engine starting to create, we're working on content for a whole heap of

other pages.

0: So I think five of the pillar, five to seven pillar pages.

And then we're going, we're also looking at ongoing content creation.

Just on the top of content creation before I leave you,

when you look at our Google search console stuff over the last to

do 12 months and then look at queries.

So queries by impression, we're getting some Google queries for like agency

jam tech, that sort of stuff. But when you look at where is our

traffic coming to or coming from and going to,

a lot of it's starting to go to the blog. So one important thing

about thinking about blog content is that it takes a whole heap of time

before you start actually getting any traffic for this.

And that also needs, you need back links.

You need it to be posted to other places, either organically by people saying

like, Hey, this is a really interesting blog post and I'm gonna reference it.

0: Or you can do some evil s**t and repost it all over the internet.

That's up to you. I wouldn't, but the blog posts are contributing in a

big way to the number of impressions we're getting. We would've written these blog

posts in June, July, that sort of time.

So it takes a few months for it to start paying off.

So if you are kicking off a content creation campaign it's

a slow burn. Yeah,

so that's some of the stuff that we're gonna be doing. Focusing on content,

upgrading some of the visuals at the site and some of the technology.

So leaning into the work that we have put down now as a foundation.

So if you look at our normal process,

we are sort of like, we normally go through discovery,

which is somewhat of what we've done here.

We don't always follow it a hundred percent when it's our own projects,

but we've done a lot of the design stuff.

0: But we wanna do more on the visual. But some of the customer interviews

and stuff is done. Positioning. I think we really know where we stand now.

We've done our SEO content Copywriting's on it's

in progress. Conversion rate optimization is something I also want to invest in we

have in gs. But we should, and then designing it visually

is one of the things we're gonna need to start doing next.

We've got our SEO strategy,

we don't have a content calendar yet,

but we need to do that. And then we need the content creation

kicked off and then we would go into development and we,

if we were doing it from actua upload zero,

we'd do all of this stuff, but we don't need to worry about that

too much for now. So that's where we are in the overall journey of

it. I hope this is interesting.

I hope it is valuable for anyone else trying to build up their site.

Yeah, best of luck.

I do not know if we have comments, but if it's on social media

or anything like that, let me know what you think. Have a great day.

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