This week, we interview Dagmar Gatell about Accelerated Mobile Pages and how they can affect your rankings in the search engines. Accelerated Mobile Pages (https://www.ampproject.org/) is an open source project launched by Google and Twitter to help improve website speed and performance on mobile devices.
For WordPress users, plugins are available to create your AMP pages. Dagmar explained that you will also want to use the plugin Glue for Yoast SEO & AMP by Joost de Valk (https://wordpress.org/plugins/glue-for-yoast-seo-amp/) to make sure that your meta information is presented correctly so that the pages are indexed correctly.
Dagmar’s Top Plugin Recommendations for AMP
AMP by Automattic (https://wordpress.org/plugins/amp/)
AMP for WP – Accelerated Mobile Pages by Ahmed Kaludi and Mohammed Kaludi (https://wordpress.org/plugins/accelerated-mobile-pages/)
More About Dagmar
Dagmar Gatell is an internationally respected SEO consultant, coach and strategist. She is the founder of Global Empire SEO Consulting.
Dagmar successfully guides entrepreneurs, subject matter experts, and businesses, by turning their expertise into successful global revenue generating businesses. She uses her expertise and instinct to create cutting-edge, targeted solutions to help you attract the right customers, convert leads and grow your business. Her SEO expertise is especially appreciated by her clients when creating demand and lead generating websites and online social presence.
Dagmar’s purpose-lead SEO consulting and coaching will help you leverage your companies expertise by becoming the go-to expert/product in your industry.
Full Transcription of the Interview With Dagmar Gatell
Kim: Hey everybody. Welcome to the WP-Tonic Podcast episode 222. We’re so happy to have you here. And we are interviewing a great guest today, Dagmar Gatell. We’re going to be talking about Accelerated Mobile Pages and other things you need to know to make sure that your in bound marketing is getting you where you want it to. Dagmar, please tell us about yourself.
Dagmar: Hi everybody. I’m Dagmar Gatell. I’m originally from Germany. I live now in beautiful Florida and I do SEO and Online Marketing since the last 6 to 8 years. But I really love SEO the most because it connects humans with the search. And that’s where I have my fun to help anybody who wants to build their authority globally.
Kim: Excellent. Thank you. And my now co-host Jonathan Denwood. Please introduce yourself.
Jonathan: Oh and you did a fantastic intro there Kim. Yes folks. Kim’s back from her bad cold. About me. I’m the founder of WP-Tonic. We’re a maintenance support company. We only support WordPress. It’s our passion and we talk a lot about it, don’t we Kim?
Kim: Yes we do.
Jonathan: So back to you Kim.
Kim: And I’m Kim Shivler. I am a Communications Instructor and Strategist who also focuses on taking your technology and using it to reach your audience, particularly with membership websites and online courses. Let’s get started. So Dagmar, this kind of came about, Dagmar and I are close friends, when you were telling me about the importance of the Google Accelerated Mobile Pages. And I said, “Okay. Tell me more”, because I’m like her worst nightmare when it comes to actual SEO folks.
Dagmar: That’s true.
Kim: I just do what I want. So tell us a little bit about what that means and why it’s important.
Kim: And so, is that making both your desktop site and your mobile site faster? Or is the just for mobile?
Dagmar: Just for mobile. AMP, Accelerated Mobile Pages, it’s only about mobile because having in mind that in 2018 we will have mobile index first where the search engines first go into the mobile version, look for a performance which is mostly load time. They look for a performance. They look for UX, User Experience. And look for content. And that’s how your keywords will be ranked from next year on. So the assumption is in the next, I just would say 2 to 5 years, it’s totally moving over to mobile and you will have a very small portion of your traffic coming into the desktop. You will perhaps 85 percent coming into your mobile.
Kim: Excellent. And so, you said this is a plugin. What’s the name of the plugin? And tell us a little bit about what we would need to do to configure it on our site.
Dagmar: Believe it or not it’s so easy to install it. It takes a little bit more thought to configure it. But with me, I have notes. Left brainer has notes for everything. So give me a second to get there and I tell you what plugin it is.
Kim: A lot of our listeners like us are WordPress people. They’re going to be definitely interested in the name of that plugin.
Dagmar: Yeah. Absolutely. So I would say there are three main plugins which I’m testing right now. So I’m a practitioner. I’m not an expert in AMP. Just getting my feet wet. But I’m so excited and my clients are so excited because it’s like, the speed. So one of the plugins I tested and so far I found it pretty good, it’s AMP by Automattic. And the Automattic is double T.
Kim: Right. And Automattic is the company that manages WordPress. The WordPress Foundation, wordpress.com, all of that. I see Snow White has just joined us which is okay. We allow cats on this Podcast.
Dagmar: Snow White is sick today. So I cannot not take of her. So the second one which I’m testing right now is AMP for WP and it’s by Ahmed Kaludi. So AMP for WP. And Ahmed, A – H – M – E – D, Kaludi is K – A – L – U – D – I.
Kim: We can find that. Thank you.
Dagmar: And the third one, and I did not test that yet is Better AMP. It’s WordPress complete AMP by Better Studio.
Kim: All right. And then from the first two that you have tested, the one by automatic and then the other one. What would you say the pros and the cons of the two of those are? Is there a big difference?
Dagmar: No, so far. I’m not the best person to ask about the big difference because it’s depending on the themes and the plugins and the style you use. So I use mostly Divi. So for Divi, it did not make a big difference. But depending on, if you have a lot of customization, if you have logos and designs and a lot of images, it for sure will make a difference. So I would highly recommend what I learned from Kim to do a test site first. And to look at it on the test site because it could break and it could screw up your design and your style.
Kim: That’s always good to know. And I think Jonathan you would agree that testing things on a test site, not your live environment, is a really good idea.
Jonathan: Just a little bit. Unfortunately I not full of advice. like the shoe maker. Have holes in my shoes. And I resist it now. I’ve been a lot better Kim. I’ve been a lot better. I understand now why my clients do it even in the most nicest way. It’s tempting Kim, isn’t it?
Kim: It’s tempting to just push that update button and I screwed up several sites many a times so I now have a staging site and I push that staging button first.
Jonathan: It’s like the devil’s itch, isn’t it? Just can’t resist it. You just. And I’m a hyper tidy person. So if I see a plugin not up and anything not right, it’s got to be dealt with straight then.
Kim: Right then. Straight away.
Jonathan: Straight away.
Kim: Yeah. Well. I get that. Now Dag, I really appreciated that feedback Daggie on it depends on the theme and the plugins. Are there are specific conflicts you have found with these from people?
Dagmar: Not conflicts. But the other thing that we want to have in mind and I’m saying it in my German English and please you add to it what I’m missing. So the AMP is an advanced coding and it really creates separate pages. So it creates this kind of a separate version of your site for mobile compared to desktop. So what you want to have in mind if it does do this, you need to make sure from an SEO perspective, your metas are displayed in the AMP. And for that Yoast has a plugin and it’s Glue like the stick, G – L – U – E, Glue for Yoast SEO and AMP. And you want to install this because you really want to make sure that not only the pages are faster, but also, they still stay indexed ranked. And then the other thing is having in mind because it’s kind of a second version of your pages and it’s so much more simpler. So normally you won’t find the header the top. You won’t find sliders on top. It’s just simply. So you have the headline. You have the text. You have images within the text. But you don’t have all the fancy schmancy stuff we have on a desktop. So because of that with the Yoast plugin and with the AMP plugin, you can at least create the header font, the colors and you can create the text colors. So you can think about how do you want, install it and look at it. How do you want to have the display of the AMP pages? So that’s what I highly recommend. See it as an addition to your website.
Kim: Excellent. And yes, from a technical perspective, they actually are a simplified HTML is really what you’re looking at. So it is a separate page. It’s simplified HTML. We’ll add some other links in the show notes to more technical detailed information on what really goes on behind the scenes for those of you who are interested. Now what interested me with this, is that it is a second site and in 2015 and 2016 when Google really was wanting, you know going crazy over the responsive themes, at the time they were discouraging having a separate optimized site.
Kim: What’s changed there?
Dagmar: I had a client who came with me at the beginning of the year and he had a separate mobile site compared to his real website. So the separate mobile site, so far what I see that the benefit is, now with the AMP it had a totally different display. It was an interruption of credibility and trust when you look at it from the mobile perspective or from the desktop perspective. So the mobile site was really all about making it very simple in mobile but limited to buttons. What’s mostly buttons where you could click on. So now really it is your website. You still have your branding, perhaps limited, but you still have your branding. So you can have one your online presence where no matter if people go to your website, to your social media, to your mobile version of your site, they still will see the same there. And then, what I see the biggest benefit is really with the AMP, it’s reliable. So sometimes with just mobile responsive sites, they’re not reliable or they can have broken elements in it. With the AMP, because of the simplicity of it, it really has a structure which has a consistency and it’s not showing elements who don’t belong there. So it’s interesting. It looks like it has its own artificial intelligence. It will pull in, because I tested it, it will put in the elements what it finds is important for mobile. Isn’t that amazing?
Dagmar: It restructures what you see on desktop and what you see on the mobile responsive side without AMP, it’s different as what you see in AMP. So it cleans up the site kind of.
Kim: Oh. That’s interesting. Now, what about video? Will you still see video?
Dagmar: I did not test video yet. I know with Divi we have the option to embed it or to have the URL right there. My experience with Divi, if I have the URL right there, it breaks sometimes that the video doesn’t come up so I normally embed it. But I did not test video yet.
Kim: Okay. So that was just your regular experience with the theme was that it was better to embed it.
Kim: Okay. Excellent. That definitely answers most of my questions about our Accelerated Mobile Pages. And we will make sure that we get all the links to these plugins. And I had read one thing of the Glue for Yoast. So just wanted to see if you had any, it sounded like in his article, that one did not take a lot more configuration. You just kind of put in it and boom, it would allow you to make sure the metas were there.
Dagmar: Right. So first you define for what do you want to use AMP mostly. And mostly, if you have a regular website, it’s for articles or blog posts. So you would define it for what type of pages do you want to use it and then the next step is like with the header colors, the font colors, the regular text colors and things like that. But may I add something from an SEO perspective, an aspect of AMP?
Dagmar: The benefits of AMP first is when it comes up in the search it will come up with the green AMP symbol. So this for sure will be more and more in the future a trust symbol. And it will be similar, what I read, similar seen as the HTTPS. So it’s a more trust symbol. So better it will in ranking without a question. So faster a site is, it’s already a ranking factor, but it will a huge ranking factor with mobile index first. So it only has benefits to put a little time and effort in installing the plugins and testing it on the test site and everything. It will have a ranking effect and so if I have two websites who perform like 15 percent better after I install the AMP. And they had the challenge before, they had a lot of images and they were so slow and we tried everything to, what’s the word for that? What you do with the image? Compress?
Kim: And optimize them?
Dagmar: And optimize them. But still, they just had so many. So now with AMP, it’s unbelievable how this changed what we got with that.
Kim: That’s fabulous. And one of the things I love with Dagmar is she tests everything. She’s very left-brained. She tests and tests and tests. She tries and tests. So I always know when she’s telling me something, she’s really getting numbers. So like you said a 15 percent increase. And what it sounded like, I just wanted to confirm. It wasn’t just that they’re looking for a faster responsive site. You actually, when it can detect those Accelerated Mobile Pages, in the search you will get a little green AMP in the actual listing? Okay. So that’s part of your social proof I guess as a trust symbol.
Dagmar: It’s a trust symbol. And not only that. I don’t know if you had the chance to see the AMP pages. So the AMP pages, they look a little bit like news pages. So they’re very limited to what they show, but they show the core of the site. They show the core of the content. Where normally you have the banner. You have all these distracting elements in it which takes away from user experience and content. So a lot of times when I see the websites, the user experience, it’s not what they have in mind when they created it. It’s more their own taste. So now with AMP, it really minimizes it in such a compact way that it’s all about user experience and then finding the relevant content which is awesome. Because it’s a great tool. It takes away the pressure off us that we need to figure out what is it that the searcher wants to see. And then the other thing that I love, in Google Analytics, you can integrate that with the AMP. So now you understand much more the user behavior because it’s so simple, the AMP pages are so simple. So you have less elements. So it’s clear. You can see where do they go, what are they most interested in. Where before on the desktop, the desktop is huge. You could test everything. So desktop you’d test one element at a time. But that, it takes you a while with A/B split testing. But now with AMP, the data you get out of that is so much more impactful.
Kim: Right. Thank you so much. Everybody, we are at our break. I’m going to turn it over to my co-host Jonathan.
Jonathan: Oh. Hi there folks. So we’re going to go for a break. It’s been a fascinating conversation about these pages that Google are planning to dominate the mobile sector with. We’re all going to be fired, not needed anymore as designers. I’m only kidding folks. So we’re going to go for our break and we’re going to come back and we’re going to learn some more about that and SEO and a lot of other things. Back in a moment folks.
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Jonathan: We’re coming back. It’s been a fascinating show. Kim’s back. Recovered from the black death. I’m going let you take over again Kim and then I’m going to butt in later on with my question. Fire away Kim.
Kim: Excellent. Yes. Back from the black death. So grateful for that. Well. I love the idea actually. It was something you said Jonathan tied into Dagmar. Well does that mean, are we joking that we really don’t need designers? But I think in more we do need designers because it’s really pushing us to the importances user experience as you pointed out. And designing a good user experience is definitely important and definitely a design piece. It means it’s taking us away though from maybe these giganto hero images across everything, right?
Kim: Will it remove those if you’re on the mobile? So you need to be building with that in mind? Or how does that work?
Dagmar: May I say it’s different. We need a different type of designer. But yesterday I worked on a website with a client from South Florida. And her designer designed her menu bar. So her menu bar where normally it’s a button, it had images in it. The whole menu bar was images. The whole blog category were images. The site broke whenever we touched it. Whenever we installed a new plugin, the site broke. So the new designer is not about making it pretty. The new designer is about making it perform better, getting better conversions with the content we put out there and the content needs to fit the design we put out there. Because a lot of times what I see the images and the headers and the text and bullet point have nothing to do with each other and there is no flow. There is no. In the future because of the semantic search, because of the artificial intelligence of the search engines which does not stop with the keyword at all. So more and more the designer of the site needs to be partial a brand expert, needs to be partial UX practitioner. So it has to be a much more complex knowledge. It’s perhaps years ago where it was about designing a graphic element or structuring a website by putting in the text and the images and the videos.
Kim: Sounds to me, I liken it to back when we really, when I was first developing websites back the mid-90s and trying to get through to people that you’re not developing print. So you would work with designers who were used to building these beautiful brochures and manuals and all. And then wanting to put that on the web, particularly back in the dial up days which were slower than even phones, you just couldn’t do it. And it seems like maybe we’re going back to some of that, wanting to get rid of some of the really bloated stuff that might look nice, but maybe isn’t actually serving us particularly in mobile. And from what I have heard and we’re going to, I’m hoping to have someone on who is an expert on conversions, that frequently the big images and stuff really aren’t helping us at conversions either even though we want to think they are.
Dagmar: I can see that because at the end if you open a mobile site without AMP, if would open a mobile site, you have this huge bloated image coming up first. You have to scroll down to find the core. Perhaps people with the attention span of a gold fish, they are already gone.
Kim: And more and more of us have attention spans of a gold fish these days.
Dagmar: Think not only that. Think about I’m so much in areas where I don’t have the perfect Internet connection.
Dagmar: So then I’m waiting forever for this huge image to load and I just want to have one detail of what I was searching for. I get impatient. So I think that we have to come back to and that’s really what I love about SEO. It goes back to the core again. Because the direction is voice search. So we’re going back from people searching for whole sentences into people say very short two or three words, what do they want. So how we communicate on our mobile devices is so much different as how we communicated on the desktops 2 years ago or 3 years ago.
Kim: I think even now when we’re looking for something on a desktop we’re likely to be looking for something different than mobile. In the sense of, on the desktop I might do some deep research where I’m actually going to go, really want to read something, find big documents. For example, maybe a training piece that I want to learn. Whereas if I’m looking up a restaurant because I’m out, I either want the directions there, maybe a quick menu and what’s their phone number. I’m not looking to dig into some on these other things necessarily.
Dagmar: Right. So what you just described, there’s a difference between a one click search and a multiple search. So the mobile is normally the click search. I search for one thing. I search for a restaurant phone number, a menu or who can provide me what services. Where on the desktop it’s normally a multiple search. It’s normally up to three searches where you start with one search term and then depending on what results you get you go deeper into it, where on mobile you normally never go deeper.
Kim: That makes perfect sense. I definitely know for me when I’m out and about if I’m searching for something it’s usually a phone number or I’m lost and I need to know how to get there. That’s my norm except for when we’re watching TV and I have to look up something in IMDB because I just think that I recognized an actor. And Michael and I play this game where we see who can pick out people who are the most obscure from old movies. But other than that, I’m really just looking for numbers and things like that when I want to find somebody. Jonathan, do you have some AMP questions too before we go into some more just general SEO stuff for Daggie?
Jonathan: Not really. It just opened a chest of research that I’m going to have to do the next couple of months. Thank you so much.
Dagmar: You’re welcome.
Jonathan: Thank you. But I think it’s fascinating that Google’s going down this path. And the real emphasis on mobile is so evident by that move. Let’s just do a bit of general SEO. So what are some of the basic things that you regularly see people still doing wrong, people like Kim that just might do it? Sorry Kim.
Dagmar: Okay. I think the one thing, and Kim doesn’t do that, the one thing people do, they write content for themself and not for what people search for. That’s the most thing that I see. They have hundreds and hundreds of pages where they have beautiful beautiful content written for people if they would land on the site. But they are missing the bridge, the SEO bridge. They’re missing keyword that they connect what people search for to bring them to the site and then bring them down to, “Okay. You search for this. But in reality, you really need this”. So they’re missing the bridge. Meaning where their websites, they’re invisible. They stay unknown. They have no reach. They have no recognition. They get frustrated about that. So by the time they come to me and they created all this content, going back and to reoptimize the content is sometimes hard for them because their ego comes in the way. So it’s really good and what helps me a lot and what helps my clients with, focusing on, if you want to create an impact. If you want to make a difference in your client’s lives with the services you offer or your product, how can you do this? What are the problems they’re dealing with? How can your solution help them? And then it becomes easier for them to integrate keywords, related keywords, semantics, SEO. For example, it’s such a simple example but I love it. So if you think about cars, C – A – R – S. So everybody I’ve asked thinks perhaps of something different. So there are car dealers and they use the word “Cars” and then also there is the movie Cars from Disney. And there is an organization which is C – A – R – S which is Cars. They write it in the same way and has nothing to do with cars at all. So now the artificial intelligence that the search engines understand, if you use words like “buy” and “sell” or “car types” or “Ford”, that’s a car dealer. Or the movie you have the actress. You have the content of the movie. So they understand it’s the movie. And then whatever their organization is relevant to. So there is the artificial intelligence. So for us compared to a few years ago, it’s much easier to create great content without using a keyword redundantly which we shouldn’t do at all. But we still need to have a keyword or a word combination to build the bridge from what people search for to how we can help them. And that’s what I see many many people missing. They don’t have the bridge.
Jonathan: Oh. I totally, so I used to be one of them and I’ve learned in a very hard bit of way that you’ve got to do exactly what you’ve just said. A question that’s kind of linked to this. I’m a great connoisseur of Brian Dean’s material. He’s a quite famous SEO person. I’m sure you’ve heard of him and his Skyscraper system. Basically, look at the competition, look at something, look at the competition. It gets a little bit tricky though, doesn’t it? Especially if you’re a learner.
Jonathan: Because you need to look something that your competitors have done that you could produce that’s better. But it’s got to be something that’s getting a reasonable amount of traffic to make the effort worthwhile. But not so competitive that you couldn’t compete. Have you got, A, do you agree with Brian’s outlook there? And secondly, got any tips about how you, tools or how you select something that you’re going to produce that’s going to be better than the competition?
Dagmar: Okay. I’m familiar with Brian and I know his Skyscraper.
Dagmar: Skyscraper. So what I see and you just referred to, if you’re familiar with SEO and if you understand his process, it works very well for you. If you’re a beginner, it could be just because you don’t have the basic understanding that you implement it not in the best way for you. So for beginners, I would recommend they need to have the tool. They need to do keyword research. If they Google keyword research tools, they’re endless on the market. So you need to have a keyword research tool. And you need first to figure out what is it you want to be found for, to understand who is your competitor in this area. Because sometimes I have clients and they think what their competitor is and they know everything about these competitive websites. But in reality, their niche is totally different. Their niche is not what they thought in the first place. So first, you need to figure out what is your real niche. What is it, where your service provides a solution, where you can create content? And then second, I would look who’s ranked number 1 for this specific niche and then go in and see why are they ranked. Do they have images? What is their social media activity? Do they use videos? What type of content do they use? How do they approach the content? How do they structure the content? So for a beginner, I would suggest to them that they do it step by step.
Jonathan: Yeah. I think that’s also a great point. Well, we’re coming to the end of the Podcast part of the show folks. Kim’s done an excellent job. We’re going to continue the discussion afterwards which you’ll be able to find on the website, at the WP-Tonic website and on the YouTube channel that’s getting more and more popular. Probably we’ll have a chat, a further chat for 10 to 15 minutes or about SEO. So we’re coming to the end of the actual Podcast. So Dagmar, how can people find more about you, your services and what you’re interested in?
Dagmar: Okay. So the best way is to go to my website dagmargatell.com. It’s D – A – G – A – R G – A – T – E – L – L.com or they just can email me at email@example.com or just give me a call at 321-209-0208.
Jonathan: Oh. That’s great. I’ve really enjoyed the conversation. Kim, how can people find more about you Kim? My beloved co-host.
Kim: You can find me on Twitter @kimshivler. You can find me on kimshivler.com and of course whiteglovewebtraining.com and reach out. I’ve been doing a lot more tweeting lately so find me there.
Jonathan: You’ve become the Queen of Twitter. And how can people find me? It’s quite easy folks. My name’s pretty easy, Jonathan Denwood, you can that in search and it all comes up. All my history, all my bad history, my bad boy stuff or you could Twitter me @jonathandenwood or you could just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And I do answer any questions or any comments or suggestions about people that you would like to come on the show. Any feedback we get is great. And to finish off folks if you can go to iTunes, put in search WP-Tonic and then give us a review, that would be really handy because it really does help the show. So we’re going to wrap up for the Podcast part. But remember there’s bonus content on the YouTube channel which you can also see on the website. Be back next week for another fantastic interview with a Web professional or a WordPress junkie. Be back next week. Bye.
What Your Favorite Motivation or Business Books?
“Hustle” – The Power of Charge Your Life with Money, Meaning and Momentum
“Be a Mindsetter” – The Essential Guide to Inspire, Influence and Impact Others
“Influence” – The Psychology of Persuasion
Can You List Your Life Success or Leadership Principles?
“Get up even if you can’t”
“How you do one thing is how you do everything” “It is how it is”
“Talk the Talk, and Walk the Walk”
“Imperfect action beats Perfect Inaction”
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