1549 – Understanding Usability and Relevancy with GreenBananaSEO’s Kevin Roy

In this episode of the Thoughtful Entrepreneur, your host Josh Elledge speaks to the Chief Executive Officer & Co Founder of GreenBanana SEO, Kevin Roy.

The Future of SEO: How AI is Changing the Game

As the world becomes increasingly digitized, it's no surprise that artificial intelligence is starting to play a bigger role in search engine optimization (SEO). In a recent podcast episode, Kevin Roy, CEO of Green Banana SEO, shared his insights into how AI is changing the game for SEO experts.

According to Kevin, AI has the potential to revolutionize the way we approach SEO by making it more efficient and effective. However, he also acknowledges that there are some concerns about how search engines will process the massive amount of content being generated on a second-by-second basis.

One of the biggest challenges with AI and SEO is ensuring that the content is still relevant and high quality. Kevin warns against simply cutting and pasting content from AI tools, as this could lead to low-quality content that doesn't resonate with users. Instead, he advises SEO experts to use AI to their advantage by analyzing data and identifying trends that can inform their content strategy.

Despite the potential challenges, Kevin is excited about the possibilities that AI presents for the future of SEO. He predicts that savvy users may start turning to chatbots instead of Google search, which could take away some market share from search engines. This means that SEO experts will need to pay close attention to AI and adapt their strategies accordingly.

Overall, the podcast episode highlights the importance of staying current with SEO updates and focusing on core principles like usability and relevance. As AI continues to evolve, it's clear that SEO experts will need to stay ahead of the game to ensure that their clients' websites rank well in search engine results pages.


About Kevin Roy:

Kevin is a dynamic leader renowned for developing growth strategies and new market entries. His diverse experience spans various sectors, including technology, finance, and biotech, where he has generated tens of millions in revenue. Recognized as transformative, Roy effectively increases profitability and innovatively solves complex problems. He has earned a reputation as a digital marketing pioneer in Boston over the last 15 years. His expertise encompasses marketing, branding, and advertising strategy, focusing on SEO, SEM, web analytics, and digital commerce in online and social media.


About GreenBanana SEO:

GreenBanana SEO is a versatile company that provides tailored SEO solutions to clients of all sizes, ranging from small businesses seeking local SEO campaigns to large corporations running national SEO campaigns. The company stands out for its unique “Pay Per Performance” model, offering genuine value and accountability. Their strategies aim to optimize clients' online presence and increase visibility, ensuring success in competitive digital landscapes. GreenBanana SEO's diverse clientele and successful track record demonstrate its adaptability and effectiveness in various market environments.


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Check out Kevin Roy on LinkedIn at

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Speaker 0 (00:00:00) - Go with us right now. Kevin Roy. Kevin, you are the c e o of Green banana, s e o, found on the Kevin, thank you so much for joining us.

Speaker 1 (00:00:16) - Yeah, thanks for having me.

Speaker 0 (00:00:17) - 15 years in business, 15 over 15 years in business. Congratulations on your longevity. That is saying something for an S E O F firm.

Speaker 1 (00:00:27) - Yeah, it's, um, it's been quite a journey. ,

Speaker 0 (00:00:30) - What has, why have you been able to continue and thrive and grow, uh, when maybe others have not?

Speaker 1 (00:00:39) - So, I, I, I think it's, it's almost two. It's two things. It's, uh, or I would say three, it's, number one is relationships. So forming relationships with our, um, clients. Um, uh, number two would be, um, transparency. So we're really transparent about what we do. And then the third is referrals. So, um, we have just started the drink our own Kool-Aid, uh, and, and apply SEO to our site almost as early as six months ago. The rest of it has been referral business and we're helping people succeed and we're being transparent about everything we do. And next thing you know, you're getting a call and then another call and another call. And I think that's what's, you know, that's what's helped us grow. And also staying, you know, staying current with all of the SEO updates and what, what changes. So I'm continuously learning, um, uh, the newest and greatest tricks to, uh, things that are ranked factors to get people ranked and applying them.

Speaker 0 (00:01:39) - Yeah. And I think, uh, a lot of folks have had experiences with kind of more very transactional service providers, maybe a higher freelancer. Mm-hmm. . And, you know, um, you, you had mentioned that, um, relationship is pretty key. Um, can you break that down? Like what does that mean?

Speaker 1 (00:01:57) - So, uh, so part of it is when you're in the digital space, people are hiring us cuz they don't understand what we do and how we do it. Mm-hmm. . So when, when, um, when someone starts at, at Green Banana, especially if they come from another agency, the first thing that I say to them is that if you're really, really good at this job, you can sell reporting for a couple months, but you can sell leads forever, right? So it's really important to talk with a client and say, um, Hey, I, I, rather than hitting 'em with this is the click through rate, and this is what latent semantic indexing is, and we're gonna do all these, you know, funnel pages, so this, that they typically have no idea what you're talking about. And a lot of them come because they've been burned by another agency, but they, so they already have their guard up.

Speaker 1 (00:02:44) - So it's really about, Hey, what do you need to do to be successful? And how can we help you? And how can we explain to you what we're doing enough so it makes sense that you're comfortable, um, with us. And, uh, let's say that, uh, one of our larger clients, we're running a big Google AdWords campaign with even, you know, we, we do more than just seo and part of our weekly calls are with their sales team. So when leads come in, we're asking them specifically, Hey, when we're running a campaign for you and we're seeing these leads come in, we can't tell if it's a great lead or a crappy lead. Um, we need you to help us get more information. And so they'll come in and say, these leads were great. These leads were terrible. Well, why were they terrible? And what can you tell us about that?

Speaker 1 (00:03:35) - What that does is helps them trust you a little bit, but it also helps our team learn even more about the business. So we have like FinTech clients and biotech clients and chiropractors and defense clients, and our job is to learn from them as much as they're learning from us. And the kind of the, the whole ends up being greater than sum of its parts. And the one constant between successful campaigns at Green Banana and campaigns that just wither on the vine are the ones where the clients are participating and sharing with you, um, is much about their business. Yeah. And trying to understand what we're doing and how to make them successful so that Yeah. Then that builds relationships.

Speaker 0 (00:04:19) - Yeah. Right. So it's more, you know, kind of a holistic alignment with what their actual goals are. You know, my background in, in pr I mean, that was the mark of a decent PR firm versus an amateur one. Amateur one is just gonna sling placements. Like, and they're, they could care, they couldn't care less what happens after they get that placement as opposed to, it sounds like, you know, you're tapped in a little bit more to, well, what are your actual goals? Um, rather than, well, we got you this ranking. Cool. Am I making any money with it? Not that I can see, not that I know, like, it's gonna be hard to keep that client on the books if they're not meeting their goals. Um, they might have some good vanity metrics or something like that, but it's not gonna do anything to drive sales.

Speaker 1 (00:05:04) - Right. And a lot of those people, a lot of the people that you're working with are not the head of the company. So they have to talk up about what's going on in marketing. So they're gonna, they might, if, if you arm them with enough information, um, and you focus on their goals, their boss is gonna come down and say, what are we spending all this money for? And, and advertising. And they're gonna be able to come in and say, well, this is how much we spent, this is how many of our goals that we hit. It's gonna be really hard for them to say, well, our impression share increased significantly in the, you know, in our market region and we have a higher clickthrough rate. The, the, it, it's, it's hard to sell that. It's hard for them to sell that to their superiors.

Speaker 0 (00:05:45) - Yeah. Um, so Kevin, you're, um, obviously, you know, you've seen trends, you know, over the past 15 years. What is Google really liking today?

Speaker 1 (00:05:58) - So one of the things I tell people is that if you understand the principles, the core principles of seo, and there's two of them, then the methods will all make sense. So there are two core principles. One is usability and two is relevance. And, um, the reason that they're important is that Google wants people to continue to use Google. So the usability piece is, it'll all make sense when I tell you. So you do a Google search, you go to a website and it doesn't work on mobile, you get frustrated and then you leave, you go to a website, um, after a Google search and it takes, you know, 17 seconds to load before you can interact. You get frustrated and you leave, you go to a website and, and it's not relevant to the keyword that you typed in, you get frustrated, then you leave or you get a virus, you get frustrated and you leave.

Speaker 1 (00:06:47) - So Google's gonna ding you for the those things. Um, but SEO aside, you should have a site that loads fast. You should have a site that works in mobile. You should have a site that's secure. So you, you check off all those boxes, here're in good shape. That's the usability piece. The relevance piece is Google's job is to return the most relevant page, not keyword phrase, I mean not website, but page for the keyword word phrase that you type in. So if you google the word basketball Yeah. More often than not the, the Wikipedia outranks the NBA because that page is just about basketball. Yeah. Right. And it's got other, other, like, they have content about scoring. Uh, they have something probably about LeBron James or Michael Jordan. They've got, uh, when basketball was originated, and then there's all these other links in that page that go and support that relevance.

Speaker 1 (00:07:37) - So those, those are the things that Google is always focusing on. So if you are talking about, um, let's say chat g p T, right? Can you write content to help with seo? You can help it to structure something with content, but the content has to be relevant to that. Um, there's no, the, the big secret to ranking in SEO is there's no secret. You have to create relevance. You have to be the most important page for the keyword phrase that you're typing in, and your website has to, has to work. Um, so all these other things that, that I hear, um, like, uh, are, are gimmicks for seo, if they don't align with one of those principles, then it's usually junk. Like I heard the other day, uh, um, a client called and said, I need to, um, I need to register for voice search.

Speaker 1 (00:08:31) - I'm like, what do you mean you need to register for voice search? Well, someone's gonna, you know, if, if you can't do it, I'm gonna pay someone else to do it. Like, you don't need to pay me or them to do that. So just think about when Alexa comes out and you say, Alexa, where's the closest pizza shop to my house? Do you think Alexa is only gonna return the people that have registered for voice search when that first came out? No. It's gonna go look at Google Maps and say, yep, all right. I I know your proximity. I understand pizza. You're two and a half miles away from this pizza place. That's what they're doing. So the registration doesn't make sense. It doesn't align with us. It doesn't align with relevance, it doesn't align with usability. So it's, it's just a gimmick.

Speaker 0 (00:09:13) - Uh, uh, how are you seeing, or like if you were look, your crystal ball, how is AI going to, uh, ultimately, um, impact SEO and people getting search results? It's, it's an exciting what's happening, but I'm pretty uncertain what the future looks like.

Speaker 1 (00:09:32) - so am so am I to tell you the truth, I think that, um, I think that that good SEOs are gonna use it to their advantage. And they should be smart enough to know that they're not gonna cut and paste some something from chat G P T. Yeah. And, uh, or a, you know, AI or Zim writer any of these things in and put it into their, their page. I think what, um, what I am having a hard time wrapping my head around is how is Google gonna process the amount of content that's being pumped out on a,

Speaker 0 (00:10:06) - I know

Speaker 1 (00:10:06) - On a second by second basis, if you and I can write 1500 words in two and a half seconds and it takes another five minutes to put it on a webpage in a minute to hit publish. Right. Think about that. So I, I think that Google is gonna, Google and Bing are who the search engines are really gonna have a hard time processing all this information and all this data that's pumping out. Um, and then the other side, I think people that are savvy are gonna go right to, to chat rather than a Google search. So it's gonna start taking away some market share, um, uh, because it can answer a question faster. Um, but it's also, the data's two years behind, so there's a little bit of, uh, um, that's, I'm sure that's gonna catch up. Um, so the answer is, I don't know the answer, but I think that if you're in this industry and you're not paying attention to it, you, you should.

Speaker 0 (00:11:01) - Yeah. Um, you know, certainly from a content perspective, I, I mean, it's been brilliant for us, uh, to at least get blinking cursor out of the way. Right. Right. And so, um, and, and, and then that would be my biggest criticism of chat G p t content. It's just, it just doesn't, like, there's not, there's no human stories in it. The, the example, like it's just, it's dry, it's very, very dry. It's,

Speaker 1 (00:11:25) - And it's predictive, so you can tell. Yeah. Um, there, there's a, there's another, there's a myth out there that there's code inside of a ch a chat output that Google can see. Yeah. I think that's a, I think that's a complete myth because you can take it and stick it in a, in a Word doc, and then stick it in a, in a Google sheet and then pop it, you know, it's, you can move it from place to place. So there's no code in there. But I think what, what chat does not so well, and what Google can see is the predictive nature of, of the story. So, um, you know, I I, I like long walks on the beach at, it's gonna be like night every single time. Right. What you should be saying is like, I like long walks on the beach with a beer in my hand and, you know, uh, sandy flip flops, right. Something like that. So yeah. That you, you have to go in and look at all that predictive stuff and go change that. That's why it's dry. It doesn't understand everything as much as these, they're super cool prompts that you can do to make it a little bit more human, but it's still predictive.

Speaker 0 (00:12:31) - Yeah. Um, a lot of folks, uh, that listen to this program, um, they serve clients, um, you know, in addition to, you know, offering frontline services through Green Banana, you have a partner program. Did, can you share a little bit more about that?

Speaker 1 (00:12:44) - Yeah, we, we have a program where we have other agencies like, uh, creative agencies that are super, super good at branding. Like, no one hires us to do branding. Um, and, um, they need, they don't have the technical chops, so we're like executioners. So if someone is running a campaign for someone and they don't know Google Ads really well, I mean, we do, um, we manage about $800,000 a month and just Google AdWords. So we, we do a lot of Google ad campaigns, we do a lot of Facebook campaigns. We execute, um, people typically don't call us to say, I need a beautiful brand position. People call us to say, I've built my client this beautiful brand position. I need to get it out there. I need to market at these events, or I need to get them leads. So that's what they hire us to do.

Speaker 0 (00:13:33) - Yeah. And then to our friends that are listening and they're like, man, I can identify when they've, you know, when they, maybe they've had like a not great experience with an SEO professional mm-hmm. , uh, what, what would, you know, let's say they came across this podcast cuz they're doing some research on Green Banana and now they've listed our conversation. Uh, what's kind of that next step that they can kind of learn what engagement might look like and maybe help set, kind of co-create some goals together potentially?

Speaker 1 (00:14:01) - So, th that's a great question. I think the first thing that you should, that they should look at is do they need seo? So Google, what if Google what you do, what you sell, if you're local, what you do and where you do it, right? Like, you know, sneaker shop in or you know, pizza Inn. Um, if you're ranking really well, you might not need seo. So I've had people call me and say, I got this really nasty report from an, you know, online and it's got a lot of red lines and bad graphs and things in there and I, I need to fire our s e o agency. And then I go and Google everything I can possibly think of in their ranking in the top three. I'm like, well, you might not be happy with the interactions you're having with your SEO o agency, but they're doing a great job.

Speaker 1 (00:14:41) - Right. So if you're ranking for, because the only reason you need SEO is to bring relevant traffic to your website. Mm-hmm. . So if you're ranking for all the keyword phrases that matter, you don't need seo. If you're not, then you need seo. If you're not sure what keyword phrases are gonna produce the best results, you can try Google AdWords campaign because I can get you on page one and 48 hours with a Google Ads campaign and you can find out if that's generating leads. Um, you know, or, or you can go look at your competitors and see what they're ranking for.

Speaker 0 (00:15:18) - Yeah. Uh, Kevin Roy, again, your website, green Banana, s e o, your c e o and co-founder. Uh, is there anything that, uh, like what should folks click on? Or when they go to the website, what should they look for?

Speaker 1 (00:15:32) - Uh, so they can just go to the homepage and hit contact if they're looking for us, um, uh, you can fill something out and if you have a question for me, the, the team will route it to me and I'm more than happy to, to help. We don't charge for, um, recon and proposals if someone's stuck, you know, um, we we're happy to help.

Speaker 0 (00:15:53) - Yeah.

Speaker 1 (00:15:54) - Excellent. That's what kinda makes this fun.

Speaker 0 (00:15:55) - Yeah. And hope, hopefully you're comfortable with gigantic gorillas cuz you're gonna see a 900 pound gorilla right on the front page.

Speaker 1 (00:16:01) - Page . There you go. Yeah, I know. Love

Speaker 0 (00:16:04) - It. Yeah. Awesome. Again, Kevin Roy, thank you so much for joining us. Green Banana, s e Thanks Kevin.

Speaker 1 (00:16:10) - Thanks so much.

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