How to build a strong brand using SEO – Interview with Hannah Thorpe

hannah thorpe

Hannah Thorpe, SEO specialist, founder and business director of FOUND., joined us for the first time as a speaker at the May 2019 edition of GPeC SUMMIT. We sat down with her and talked about trends in SEO, how to build a strong brand, her take on voice search and digital assistants. 

During her presentation, Hannah talked about ways to measure performance other than relying on revenue results. She says that brands should be looking at the engagement level, they should track online brand presence and personalize customer experience after analysing customer data, since branding has become important in e-commerce in recent years. From an SEO perspective, online shops can start building a strong brand by first setting up a Google MyBusiness profile (even if you don’t have a physical location for your shop), Hannah advises. This way, Google can easily recognize you as an entity and you will get better brand recognition from people searching for you. She also suggests using affiliates or partnering with influencers to boost your online exposure.

One thing Hannah advises against is duplicate content. She says a frequent mistake that e-commerce brands recently make is using the same product description on their website or affiliates sharing the same product description as the original owner, rather than personalizing the content to match the target audience.

Voice search is predicted to be 50% of all online searches in 2020, so we asked Hannah what can a business do in order to do well in this type of search. From her experience, online shops should optimize for position 0 in search, since 80% of search answers are read from it.

Speaking of voice searches, since these are triggered mostly by using a digital assistant, we wanted to know how will they impact SEO in the future. It appears that people tend to treat digital assistants as a friend, asking questions for advice rather than searching for information (for example, asking “How should I cut my hair?” instead of searching for “haircuts”). And because of this change in user behaviour, assistants have become more important. Assistants also minimize the amount of display ads that advertisers can show to the users, because they provide solutions. So, to be able to become better than your competition, Hannah suggests having “a better product offer, a better price, better service or some form of better brand loyalty“.

For more SEO insights from Hannah and her list of interesting people to follow, check out the full interview on our YouTube channel. Don’t forget to subscribe to the GPeC YouTube Channel for more interviews, insights and live transmissions.


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