Online Marketing & SEO Blog

For a long time, reciprocal links have remained at the forefront of most inbound linking strategies. This is going to have to change. Google now discounts all reciprocal links. The algorithm has been altered to identify the exchange of links by two parties for the purpose of increasing their number of inbound links.

The concept of reciprocal linking defies Google’s original intention with the algorithm. Quality content should attract links. The exchange of links is nothing more than a mutual agreement to unjustifiably promote others’ content with the end goal of promoting your own. Google doesn’t particularly like this (see Link Schemes).

Some even claim that Google is now able to identify three-way linking schemes (i.e. website A links to website B, who links to website C, who links back to A). Whether this is true or not is hard to say. One thing is for certain though: inbound linking strategies should NOT be centered around reciprocal linking. This manufactured form of link creation is not well-received and is ultimately a waste of time. Instead, focus on creating unique, high-quality content in a given niche. The links will ensue.

When assessing page structure and layout, there is a subtle, yet strategic way to use images in an SEO-friendly manner (beyond ALT tags) that improves your search rank while allowing you to integrate the necessary marketing message(s). Confused? Let’s look at an example:

Suppose you operate a travel site and you want to optimize a given page for the term “Las Vegas hotel”. Suppose that you also want to include an enticing marketing message such as “Book now and save 20%!”. The aforementioned tagline lacks descriptive text, but possesses persuasive characteristics. That being said, you may want to place the tagline in an image and the key phrase (i.e. Las Vegas hotel) in a header tag. This places emphasis on the desired term, yet still provides a marketing opportunity without compromising keyword consistency.

In other words, images are a great place to insert marketing messages that lack the necessary keywords and phrases. Leveraging this technique will ensure that descriptive text is indexed, while less marketing jargon is overlooked. The combination of keyword-rich content and enticing messaging will satisfy both sides of the strategic equation.

SEO is not an exact science. This becomes apparent when trying to incorporate both SEO and branding into a strategy. This process is finicky to say the least. On the one side, SEO deals with the placement of keywords and phrases. On the other side, branding deals with company loyalty and culture. Incorporating both sides dilutes the prominence of both. But eliminating one or the other may not meet all strategic and marketing goals.

Once again, it should be emphasized that SEO is a series of guidelines rather than an exact science. Having said that, the following recommendation can be used to satisfy both sides of the equation. In general, keywords and phrases (i.e. SEO) should remain the focus of any early-stage company, while the incorporation of company branding should appear later in the evolution. This is simply a general statement and should not be taken word for word.

The reasoning is pretty straightforward. At first, no-one knows the name of your company, but perhaps they are searching for your products or services. In other words, you want to target keywords and phrases that focus around your offering rather than your company. As you build loyalty and credibility, branding becomes more important. It’s at this point that you may want to incorporate corporate messaging to strengthen the relationship with customers and instill trust in your brand.

One final thought about branding: if a searcher types in the name of your company, they are likely to find your website anyways. This is due mostly to anchor text and back-links. Therefore, optimizing for the company name is rather insignificant in most cases.

I know we’ve been singing the same tune for a while now – but there’s a good reason why…

 

The biggest “bang for buck” right now in SEO is cleaning up & optimizing onsite factors. Without question.

 

This has a MASSIVE impact across literally all of your site’s current rankings (it boosts them across the board) – and unlike external promotion, it can happen very quickly.

 

Also, unlike external promotion – onsite is a one-time investment.

 

What many people don’t realize is that Google’s Panda algorithm isn’t so much a “penalty”, as it is a sort of organic “content quality score”. And, just like with Adwords, the higher the quality score, the higher ALL of your pages will rank, across the board.

 

Unlike with a true penalty (like Penguin), all the data suggests that every site has a “Panda score”. And even the slightest fixes, improvements and optimization can drive awesome lift.

 

That’s why, just recently, we’ve released a new service called:

 

* Full-Scale, Comprehensive Onsite Audits

 

And in a nutshell, this is a deep-dive audit that uncovers virtually every red-flag, problem area and outright Panda trigger that is currently holding your site(s) back.

 

This is backed up with a detailed action-list that lays out not only the problems your site has, across the board – but also provides detailed “here’s how to fix it” instructions for each one.

 

We have direct experience with fixing on-site issues for well over 1000+ sites in our collective experience. This is an area we know intimately – and we also know from seeing it play out many, many times, that onsite is the biggest multiplier in the organic traffic environment.

 

Remember that even a handful of “thin pages” or other “red flags” (in Google’s eyes) will negatively suppress every other page of your site, without bias.

 

And in the same way – resolving those issues will not only significantly lift a site’s current visibility – but it also multiplies the effectiveness of every subsequent promotion in the future, as well.

 

So, if you’re serious about driving measurable results for you, for your clients – and in general – then you definitely want to check this out.

The importance of anchor text with respect to a linking strategy cannot be overstated. Back-links are a huge part of the search engine algorithm. When initiating a linking campaign, it is vital that external sites link using the appropriate keywords and terms in the anchor text.

Almost always, linking candidates will use the company name as anchor text. This does not provide any type of description of the target company’s products or services. Sure, it may be great for branding purposes, but it isn’t usually needed. In most cases, companies already rank very high (if not first) for searches that incorporate their brand.

Here is an example using fictional company “Acme Plumbing Supplies”:

Most people will link simply using the terms “Acme”. This is alright, but it does not describe the company’s products or services, nor provide any context. By adding the word “plumbing” or term “plumbing supplies” (i.e. “Acme Plumbing” or “Acme Plumbing Supplies”), you may be able to drive additional traffic that may not have otherwise attained the corporate site.

The debate between absolute links and relative links continues to live on in the SEO world. The individual significance of each has been contested, but it is widely regarded that absolute links provide better SEO value on the whole than relative links.

Many believe that absolute links have less potential for getting messed up when search engines index your page. It shouldn’t really make a difference, but many conclude that this is reason enough.

Furthermore, content scrapers and RSS services may ‘repurpose’ your content legitimately (or not). In either case, shouldn’t a proper back-link be attributed to your site? This situation favours absolute links. Although this is a minor argument, it’s still worth considering.

There’s no question that ranking higher than your competitors on Google is a must. But, what if you don’t know the SEO tips and tricks that will get your e-commerce site to the top? If you’re missing out on clicks, you’re probably also missing out on sales.

Whether you’re just getting started with a new website or improving an existing site, this complete guide provides useful tactical suggestions for stepping up your SEO game.

These days, reaching the first page isn’t enough. You must rank #1.

In 2011, Search Engine Watch reported that a research study by Optify discovered that “websites ranked number one received an average click-through rate (CTR) of 36.4 percent; number two had a CTR of 12.5 percent; and number three had a CTR of 9.5 percent.”

Another study by Gabe Donnini at Marketing Land last year supported Optify’s findings. It showed that “the share of impressions coming from the first position is almost double that for the second position, truly illustrating the value the first spot holds.”

What does this mean in layman’s terms? If you don’t have a strong SEO strategy in place, you are losing out on brand impressions, clicks, and sales.

Do you want to know how to rank your e-commerce site? Read this step-by-step guide, and you’ll be on your way to becoming an SEO savvy business owner or marketer.

Part 1: Research

Before you begin any SEO work (on-site or off-site), you need to start with research – keyword research and competitor research.

Why?

Research is the most important piece of SEO. Targeting the wrong keywords can ruin your campaign by generating low quality traffic and few conversions, and no business wants that!

A: Keyword Research

There are three primary areas you need to focus on when conducting keyword research:

1. Find keywords for your homepage and product pages

When it comes to optimizing the most important pages of your website, you should consider relevancy, search volume, and ranking difficulty.

I suggest going for keywords that are highly relevant to your brand or products, that have a high exact match search volume (local, not global) in Google’s free AdWords Keyword tool, and that have a low difficulty score from Moz’s keyword tool.

search terms

Be careful to not choose keywords that are too broad or too competitive. If the match is too broad, you likely will end up with a high bounce rate and low conversion rate because of people clicking through to your site and not finding what they are looking for. Additionally, if you go after keywords with high competition, it will take a long time to achieve high rankings (if ever).

For example, if you manufacture “all natural” coffee filters, you should not go after broad keywords like “coffee,” “natural coffee,” or “organic coffee,” as these are not specific keywords for people who are looking for coffee filters. Also, those keywords have high competition, and your site probably won’t rank for them against large coffee manufacturers.

2. Pinpoint keywords for blog topics

Creating blog content can assist in ranking your e-commerce business for additional keywords that might not have a place on your main website. Plus, you can capitalize on long-tail keywords with your blog.

What are long-tail keywords anyway? These are unique searches that people use to find things online. They consist of more than one word.

For example, it might sound like a good idea to try to rank for “coffee” if you sell coffee beans; however, the data shows that “popular” search terms like “coffee” make up “less than 30% of the searches performed on the web.” This is where long-tail keywords come into play.

popular keywords vs longtail traffic

According to Moz, “The remaining 70% lie in what’s called the ‘long tail’ of search. The long tail contains hundreds of millions of unique searches that might be conducted a few times in any given day, but, when taken together, they comprise the majority of the world’s demand for information through search engines.”

With this in mind, go after long-tail keywords that have a high exact match search volume (local, not global) and low difficulty score. After you have exhausted that list, you can start targeting lower volume keywords that still are highly relevant.

Note: You should never stuff any of your web pages or your blog posts with keywords. When writing for your blog, focus on developing great content on topics that people will want to read and share.

In essence, always write for people, not search engines. Google’s algorithm now rewards sites that create great content and penalizes sites that keyword stuff or use other tactics that can be seen as manipulative.

3. Avoid keyword cannibalization

Keyword cannibalization occurs when multiple pages of the same website are trying to rank for the same keyword.

In a post on On Page SEO, Sean Work from KISSmetrics notes “The problem with this is that it’s confusing to the search engines. You end up forcing them to choose which page is more important for that particular keyword out of the group of webpages. This weakens your ability to obtain traffic for that keyword.”

So, what does this mean? It means you should not even write a blog post using a keyword that you focused on for one of the pages on the main portion of your website.

In order to avoid keyword cannibalization, list each page of your website on a spreadsheet with the keywords you are trying to rank for. If you sort the keyword column, you should not see any doubling of exact keywords.

B: Competitor Research

After you’ve done keyword research, you’re half way there! Now it’s time to conduct competitor research. You should consider:

1. Which keywords are your main competitors going for?

Compile a list of keywords your competitors appear to be using with their SEO strategy. Also, you should look to see if they have a higher Domain Authority (DA)than you? Do their web pages have higher Page Authorities (PA) than you?

Luckily, Moz makes this really easy for you. You can find the information by installing the free Moz toolbar.

In the Page Elements tab, you’ll see meta data as well as header tags. It will look like this:

webpage analysis

In the Link Data tab, you will see Page Authority and ranking information:

moz page analysis

If your competitors have significantly higher DA’s or PA’s than you, it may be a good idea to focus on other keywords, as competing against them will be very difficult. Try to go for easier wins, if you can!

To determine the DA or PA of any website or webpage, simply install the free Moz toolbar for Chrome or Firefox.

2. Where are they getting their links?

One really important thing to remember is to pull a list of the places your competitors are getting their inbound links.

To get this list, you can use a tool like Open Site Explorer:

 moz open site explorer

You can attempt to get a link from these sites as well through blogger outreach, press outreach, or setting up your own company pages. Don’t worry; there is more information on blogger and media outreach later in this guide!

Before reaching out to the sites on the list, first delete any site that has a low DA score. Getting an inbound link from a site with a low DA score actually can hurt your rankings as Google may suspect that a bad site is linking to you because you also have a bad site. Good to know, right?

3. What is their site architecture like?

Look at the site architecture of competing sites. What is their navigation like? How deep do their links go? E-commerce stores should pay special attention to the architecture for:

  • Popular products in a particular category
  • Related products
  • Top rated products
  • Recently viewed products

Once you have an idea of how the biggest companies within your industry organize their architecture, you can decide if you want to go the same route, follow the same route with modifications, or take a completely different route.

According to Moz in 2011, “most SEOs argue that pages buried very deeply in the architecture might not receive enough link juice to be visible in search engine rankings. Certainly, it remains true that by promoting content ‘up’ the architecture, you can improve its overall rank.”

So, if you see major competitors with deep navigational architecture, you should not copy them simply because they are a big brand.

4. From a strategy perspective, how can you differentiate your website?

This question ties in closely with what we’ve just discussed about site architecture. What can you do for your site that will make it different and better than your competitors? Can you improve the navigational architecture? How can you make your site more social? Will you add a blog if your competitors don’t have one? Make a list of actions you can take to ensure your site is better for consumers than theirs.

Part 2: Identifying Current Problems

After you have conducted your keyword and competitor research, it’s time to begin auditing your site for problems that need to be fixed. The top things we recommend focusing on in the auditing stage are:

A: Quickly Find Site Errors

I like to use Screaming Frog to find any website errors. Screaming Frog is free to use and will “spider your websites’ links, images, CSS, script and apps from an SEO perspective.” Then, it will provide you with a summary of data including errors, redirects, duplicate pages, missing header tags, and so on. Awesome!

The top errors you will want to correct quickly include:

  • Redirecting any 404 pages to actual content
  • Changing 302 redirects to 301 redirects
  • Updating duplicate content pages, meta titles, and meta descriptions

Screaming Frog will help you identify the above and many, many other site errors that will help improve your SEO and overall usability and conversion rate.

B: Determine Your Website Speed

Once you have taken care of the big errors, it’s time to focus on website speed.

Visitors will not hang around and wait for a slow website to load. Your customers will click back to Google to find a faster website, which is likely to be a competitor!

In fact, research shows that 40% of people abandon a site that takes longer than 3 seconds to load! Don’t lose customers because your site is slow.

every second counts

This is why it’s mega-important for your website to load quickly. If you need a way to test your website speed, use a free tool like Pingdom.

 pingdom website speed test

If it takes more than 3 seconds for your website to load, you can increase the speed by buying more server space, using a different CMS (for example, Magento is notoriously slow, whereas WooCommerce is known for being fast), or reducing image and file sizes.

In the example above, you can see that Mashable loads in under 2 seconds!

For more tips on increasing site speed, check out this post by Neil Patel.

Part 3: On-Page Optimization

While off-page search engine optimization (that is, link building) is important, on-page optimization is just as important. On-page optimization includes all of the actions you take within your own web pages to help your site rank better.

Think of on-page optimization as the low-hanging fruit in the SEO game. You can control this, which is great.

When it comes to on-page optimization, there are eight key targets you need to focus on:

  • Keyword Optimization
  • Site Structure
  • Internal Linking
  • Usability
  • Mobile Version of Website
  • Customer Reviews
  • Rich Snippets
  • Social Media Integration

A: Keyword Optimization

As mentioned earlier in this guide, you want to optimize your page and blog posts on your site for one keyword. In order to optimize a page, you need to ensure that page has the keyword in strategic locations, including:

  • The page title
  • Headers
  • Subheaders
  • Paragraph copy
  • Product descriptions
  • Image file names
  • Image alt tags
  • Meta title and description
  • URLs

When creating URLs, be sure they are user friendly. This means they should include real words (your keyword) and not a lot of numbers and gibberish.

Also, remember that your meta title and descriptions should not sound like gibberish or be packed with keywords either. They should read like an ad because the higher your click-through rate (CTR), the higher Google will place you in its results. Makes sense, right?

For example, when I search for “conference promotional products,” here are two listings that come up on the first page:

8 conf

9 conf

Which of these two descriptions would get YOU to click? The keyword stuffed one or the one that entices you with a benefit (that is, learning how promotional products can create a lasting impact on your company)? Once you break it down like this, on-page optimization begins to make a lot more sense.

B: Site Structure

If you’re building a website from the ground up or executing a re-design, information architecture is a must. We’ve talked a bit about architecture, but let’s dive in a bit deeper.

As you know, great architecture can dramatically affect your website’s usability, rankings, and conversions. In addition, proper planning will make expanding your product lines in the future a breeze. This is especially true with e-commerce websites because of the sheer size of the website.

With usability in mind, use a tool like LucidChart to create a chart of your website’s information architecture.

Focus on creating a “flat architecture” for your website, meaning design that requires as few clicks as possible to go from your home page to your product page. This way, the maximum amount of “link juice,” or authority, will pass from your home page to your product page via internal links.

website architecture

Then, take your findings from the keyword research you did at the beginning, and base your architecture on your targeted keywords in a way that still provides your customers and search engines a logical path from the home page to product pages.

For example, if you run an online pet food store, your site structure could look like this:

pet food

Of course, these examples are very simple, and your website may be more complex. If you get totally stumped, reach out to the SEO community through a consultant, bloggers, or the Moz.com Q&A section to ensure you get it right the first time. There also are other in-depth information architecture guides that can be found here, here and here.

The layout illustrated above obviously has links from the home page down to the product page. It’s also helpful to link between pages and categories to distribute “link juice” to pages that have a higher priority for ranking. I’m sure you’re starting to get the picture now!

C: Internal Linking

The next step is internal linking. You might not have heard of this before, but I’m sure you know what it is. This is when you link pages of your website to other pages within your website.

Internal linking allows you to establish your own anchor text, which can help you with ranking for your top keywords.

site structure

However, when it comes to internal linking, you should be sure to use it somewhat sparingly. If you pack all of your pages with internal links, Google will think you are trying to do something suspicious. Google is smart and the algorithm will pick this up. Rather, you should place internal links only where it is natural to do so.

Additionally, don’t add a lot of links with the same exact anchor text. Google looks for anchor text variety from both inbound and internal links.

Finally, once you have completed your website, you should create and submit a sitemap to Google so it can crawl your entire website and index each page.

D: Usability

Usability is super-important for SEO and for making your site visitors happy. If your e-commerce site has great usability, your customers will start visiting your site repeatedly, which is the goal!

Great user experience means a website is easy to use, fun, and helpful. Great user experience also means your users will spend more time on your site.

Part of your usability testing should include making sure there are as few steps as possible in the checkout process, ensuring the checkout process works seamlessly, giving your visitor quick ways to contact you, making it simple for visitors to navigate to other important information, and guaranteeing your site loads quickly.

I often recommend using a live chat widget. This works well to lift conversion rates and also increases the average time on site per session, which is great for SEO purposes.

olark chat

If you’re looking for a live chat tool, check out Olark.

E: Mobile Version of Website

Do you know how hot mobile shopping is becoming? Many people are not only browsing the web, but also making purchases through mobile devices, which means it’s really important to have a mobile-friendly version of your site.

Need some convincing? Check out these stats:

  • 31% of mobile Internet users “mostly” go online using their phones (Pew, 2012)
  • 61% of customers who visit a mobile unfriendly site are likely to go to a competitor’s site (IAB)
  • 58% of mobile users expect mobile sites to load as quickly or faster than desktop sites (Google, 2011)

Many companies have had issues with the mobile versions of their websites. Because they produced duplicate content, it creates SEO problems and affects Google’s algorithm for your ranking.

With the advent of responsive website design, you can code a site so that it works on any device (desktop, tablet, mobile phone) without creating multiple sites. This is great news for e-commerce sites.

If you do not have a web developer on your staff, you can purchase and customize a responsive design template from Themeforest.net or any number of other template sites.

Themeforest has a particularly good selection of e-commerce templates.

F: Customer Reviews

Of course, a staple for any e-commerce site is customer reviews for each product.

According to Internet Retailer, you can increase your e-commerce conversion rateby 14-76% by adding product reviews to your online store. Jupiter Research also found that 77% of consumers read reviews before purchasing online.

In addition to increasing conversions, customer reviews also positively impact your SEO because more reviews = more content, and frequent reviews = fresh content, which Google loves to see.

To obtain more customer reviews, you can use a reward-based plugin like WooTheme’s Review for Discount option.

You also can send an email out a few days after you know a customer has received a product asking if they need any assistance, and, if not, would they please leave a review. Simple tricks like this will really help your SEO!

G: Rich Snippets

If you’ve used Google recently, you’ve probably noticed results looking like this:

14 rich snippet

Or this…

15 rich snippet

These are “rich snippets” and they have a huge impact on a website’s rankings.

There are types of rich snippets for authors, business information, events, music albums, people, products, recipes, reviews, and videos.

Rich snippets are HTML coded bits that tell search engines what searchers should be able to understand about your website before even clicking through to see it.

When people see results in Google with images, they’re more likely to click and convert into a customer.

To install rich snippets, follow these instructions:

  1. Get into your HTML of each page that you want rich snippets on.
  2. Add the microdata for the desired rich snippet. Read this guide from HubSpotto learn how to get the appropriate code. Then, publish the changes.
  3. Test to make sure it works here:http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/richsnippets.

H: Social Media Integration

An e-commerce site wouldn’t be complete without social media! Social media signals (growing your community, engaging with customers, and sharing content)impact your SEO.

ranking factors

Having a lot of social signals tells Google that people find your website and brand valuable.

You can begin growing your social signals quickly by adding social buttons to your product pages, blog posts, and homepage.

According to Jayson DeMers at Forbes, “A branded social presence can help build word of mouth that gets you customers, mentions, and links.”

Perhaps the #1 social media channel you need to set up and engage on is Google+. Forbes says, “Google has been explicit that social signals play a role in its algorithm. Twitter and Facebook matter some, but many of the search results from both networks are restricted. Therefore, the network that carries the most weight is Google+.”

Part 4: Further Testing

After you have worked on your on-page SEO (including usability), it’s important to put a testing and optimization strategy in place.

You should:

  • Use analytics to see which keywords are converting the highest
  • Use PPC campaigns to find high-converting keywords you should add to your SEO strategy
  • Test meta titles and descriptions to increase click-throughs
  • A/B test page content to increase conversions from web traffic

Having a strong testing strategy in place will help your results continue to improve. Without constant iteration, your rankings could drop and you could be losing out on leads or sales due to a poor conversion rate.

Part 5: Adding Blog Content

As mentioned in Part 1: Research, keyword research is crucial to any SEO strategy. Since each page of your site should be optimized for only one keyword, there will be plenty of important keywords that don’t make it onto a page of your site.

The way to rank for those keywords is through a blog. With a blog, you can optimize each post for a keyword that you aren’t targeting with the main pages of your site.

As with your website pages, your blog posts need to be high quality and reader-friendly. You should hire an experienced, professional writer who not only understands your industry, but also has a basic knowledge of SEO.

If your posts are keyword stuffed or low quality, your customers will not read them and they certainly won’t share them. Also, as you know, Google will penalize you for keyword stuffing and you won’t earn any social signal points either.

When you’re creating blog content, consider packaging together various posts on the same theme into a downloadable eBook or guide.

Kyle Lacy, Senior Manager of Content Marketing and Research for ExactTarget says, “The contents of an eBook can be easily published in their entirety or as teaser content to drive more interaction, downloads, and overall interest in your eBook. Basically, when it comes to content marketing, your goal shouldn’t be to generate a ton of content, but rather use the content you create effectively.”

As an example, if you are an e-commerce business that sells jewelry, you might write a series of posts on how to select the perfect diamond for an engagement ring, how to finance the cost for the ring, and you might even include creative, romantic tips for a memorable proposal. Then, you could package those posts together into a downloadable eBook or guide.

The eBook or guide could be downloaded after buyers entered their email address into a lead generation form or landing page.

Later, you could send them a series of sales and marketing emails prompting the potential buyer to purchase the engagement ring from your store.

While you’re putting together this type of content marketing and email campaign, remember when it comes to writing any web content, always be thinking about quality!

Part 6: Link Building

Similar to content, you will want to concentrate on earning quality inbound links, when it comes to link building.

Not only will Google penalize your site if a lot of low quality sites are linking to you, but also the referral traffic won’t do anything positive for your business.

A low quality inbound link would be one from a low authority website. (Remember: you can use Moz’s toolbar to quickly see the authority level of any domain, as we discussed earlier!)

You usually can tell a low quality site just by looking at it. They tend to be full of ads and contain poorly written, keyword stuffed content.

Speaking of which, content farms (sites that accept guest posts from anyone about anything) usually will provide you with a low quality link. Google does not like content farms so stay away from them if you can!

Instead, focus on earning links from really good, high authority sites by offering something of value to them in exchange for a link.

You can do this by offering a high-quality guest post, providing a quote for a story, co-authoring a research study, putting together a great infographic, and so on.

Try using a free service like HARO (Help a Reporter Out) to find press opportunities.

Here are a few types of links best suited for e-commerce websites:

dsw write a review

A quick note about broken link building: while it is an effective means for generating inbound links, it should be low on the prioritization checklist.

According to Dana Lookadoo, president of Yo! Yo! SEO:

“Broken link building is not a primary focus on a new SEO project, usually. An SEO audit would uncover needs, and from there a prioritization action list would be developed. Information architecture issues usually get priority and then a clean-up of any issues that affect the site’s authority and trust in the eyes on the search engines. Once the on-site SEO and content strategy are solid, then broken link building outreach can be considered as part of the off-site [link building] efforts.”

As you’re working through the above list of link building tasks, keep in mind that when it comes to link building, you should NOT:

  • Use the same anchor text repeatedly – go for variety
  • Link to the same page repeatedly – link to the most relevant page
  • Get links from low authority websites

Of course you won’t always be able to control the anchor text or which page is looked to, but that’s okay. This probably will lead to variety naturally.

If you have a close relationship with the website owner, you could kindly request specific anchor text, but otherwise you should just say thank you and not bug that person to change the anchor text or link. It’s better to establish positive relationships with high authority sites than to argue over one link, which alone will not hurt your SEO.

The answer is simple – inbound linking cannot hurt your search ranking. How is this known for certain? Well, for one, if inbound were to hurt your rank, your competitors would continually link to your site from link farms. Such a scenario is beyond your control. For this reason, Google cannot penalize your site for any inbound linking.

On the other hand, you can be penalized for illegitimate external linking. It is highly advised that you not link to any website or group of sites that may be involved in shady or unethical search practices. Doing so could result in being black-listed by Google, ultimately ruining your SEO strategy. Avoid this situation at all costs and ensure that all external links point to trusted and reliable sources.

Having been involved in the internet industry for a large part of my working life, I have spent a lot of time researching and browsing the internet and reading websites, mainly for client design research, but also for occasional personal use. The one thing that I find most disappointing, is the apparent lack of thought going into website creation and it’s purpose, which in turn creates a missed opportunity for many e-businesses to become successful.

My personal perspective on e-businesses and their websites, is that if they don’t take pride in their websites and show to their customers a passion for what they do, chances are, they won’t take pride in their products, and the passion for providing good customer service will also be missing.

What you must remember, is that your web site is a direct reflection of you and your business. The appearance of your site is the most important factor in determining your potential success rate. In short, if your site doesn’t look professional or pleasing to the eyes at first glance, the majority of people will assume your products and/or services to be of similar poor standard.

At the other end of the scale, you could fall into the trap of going overboard with the design and over complicate things with incorporating high costing flashy graphics. You may end up with a great looking and highly aesthetic web site, but the danger with this is that your site may prove unreliable and at times may take too long to load. There is nothing worse for a customer than trying to visit a slow loading site, and most will close the browser window in complete frustration. As i’m sure you will be able to work out, this will ultimately cost you business.

The other major consideration (if not the most important) when designing a website is your content. Not just links, but content with passion, relativity, and understanding to the customer. When someone is searching for something in particular and they visit your web site, they’re visiting for a reason. Your site has something they want, Whether this be your product, service, and/or information. If they are unable to obtain what they’re looking for, they move on to the next site and so on. To be able to get your visitors to stay and look around your website, you must give them a reason to. Providing them with quality content will achieve this goal.

There have been countless other lists and articles on the subject of website designing mistakes, but I have compiled my own list, from a designer’s perspective, of some pitfalls to look out for when considering either designing a website or purchasing a template. Remember that the simple, clear, informative and well designed sites are the most successful. If you are a current e-business and your sales aren’t what you had hoped, consider the above and take some time to look openly and honestly at your site. Spending money on improving your website is a much better investment than throwing money away on trying to advertise and market a site that just isn’t good enough to sell your product or services.

If you are looking for a template or a custom designed website, be aware of the above and be prepared to ask your chosen designer or template provider questions to ensure that your hard earned money doesn’t go to waste on an inferior design, which contains any of the above. Asking questions won’t cost you a penny, and in doing so could actually save you a lot of money over the long term. Getting your website right first time is vital in terms of saving money and time. The earlier your website is up and running properly, the quicker you will be able to reap the rewards of a successful e-business.

The prime mistake Newbies make is to put their website name into the Anchor Text. Unless your website contains your keywords this is a waste of a perfectly good link. Remember that Google puts a very big importance on those Anchor texts and they should always use your keywords.

The second mistake is trying to put every single keyword into your anchor text and give that to everyone. There are two mistakes with this technique. 1.) Google assigns weight to each word in anchor text so if there are a lot of filler words (common in long sentences), they will “dilute” your target words.

According to two recent surveys, conducted by Forrester Research and Gartner Group, ecommerce sites are losing $1.1 to $1.3 billion in revenue each year due to customers click- away caused by slow loading sites. If a page takes too long to load, your potential customer will not wait. Ultimately costing you business.

Make sure you include proper META tags in the HTML of each page of your web site. META tags are HTML code that enable the search engines to determine what keywords are relevant to a specific site. About 80 percent of all web site traffic originates from the eight major search engines. It would be a good idea to make sure you’ve done your homework and fully understand how to optimize your web pages prior to designing your site. This will save you a lot of headaches in the long run. For further information on META tags read the tutorial entitled, “Building Your Site.”

Be cautious when selecting your background and text colors. Busy backgrounds make text difficult to read and draw the attention away from the text. Always be consistent with your background theme on each page of your site. Your site should be nicely organized and uniform throughout. Keep in mind, colors affect your mood and will have an affect on your visitors as well. Bright colors such as yellow and orange, cause you to become more cheerful or happy, while colors such as blue and purple have a calming effect. Dark colors such as brown and black have a depressing effect. A good rule of thumb would be to use colors based upon the type of effect you’re trying to achieve.

Your main page should specifically let your visitors know exactly what you’re offering. How many times have you visited a site and never figured out exactly what they were selling? If your potential customer can’t find your product or service, they definitely won’t waste a lot of time looking for it. They’ll go on to the next site and probably never return. They’re visiting your site for a specific purpose. They want something your site offers. Whether it is information, a product or service.

Design your site to be easily navigated. Place your navigation links together at the top, bottom, left or right side of the page. Use tables to neatly align your links. If you are planning on using graphic buttons to navigate your site, keep in mind that with each graphic you add to your page, it will take that much longer for your page to load. If you only have a handful of navigational links, using graphic buttons will be fine. If you have over six links, it would be wise to simply use text links to keep your load time down.

If you must use frames, use them sparingly. Frames, if not properly used, can make your site look unprofessional. Avoid making your visitors have to scroll from side to side to view your content. This can be very irritating and cause your visitors to leave. If you must use frames, offer your visitors a choice. Frames verses No Frames. Try to keep the number of clicks required to get from your main page to any other page on your site down to four. Keep in mind, your visitors may enter your site from pages other than your main. Always have good navigational links on every page and place your company logo on each page.

Design a quality e-book to give to your visitors. It’s not as difficult as it sounds. If you can create a web page, you can create an e-book. The focus of your e-book should compliment your web site. Simply write about your passion. If your passion is sales, then you could share some of your knowledge and experience by designing your e-book to provide a complete sales training guide. If your passion is home based business, you could write an e-book about how to start your own home based business. If you’re writing about your true passion then you shouldn’t have any trouble coming up with something to write about. For further information on e-books, read the article entitled, “How to Create an E-book and Drive Massive Traffic to Your Site by Giving It Away.”

Having been involved in the internet industry for a large part of my working life, I have spent a lot of time researching and browsing the internet and reading websites, mainly for client design research, but also for occasional personal use. The one thing that I find most disappointing, is the apparent lack of thought going into website creation and it’s purpose, which in turn creates a missed opportunity for many e-businesses to become successful.

The simple answer is no – search engine submission isn’t necessary. The majority of search engines nowadays (most notably Google) crawl and index pages by following links. Using that logic, a single inbound link from any already-indexed page will identify your page to the engine. Subsequently, if that page links to other pages within your site, they will also be indexed… and so on.

For this reason, inbound linking is very important. In fact, acquiring back-links may be the most important of SEO. In theory though, a website owner shouldn’t have to ’scout’ or ‘hunt’ for links. If the presented content is of interest, useful, and/or important, there is a natural tendency among web users to link to information. This is the basis for the Google PageRank algorithm.

With all due respect, submitting your site to the search engines can’t hurt. Plus, it only entails about 5 minutes of added work assuming you only submit to the big guys. And once is enough… you don’t need to submit your site more than once. It doesn’t help or get your site crawled any quicker or more often.

It should be noted that submitting your site to Google, Yahoo, MSN, and many others doesn’t cost a fee. Many SEO companies assert that you need to pay to be indexed. This isn’t the case and I would stay away from these companies. They are money hungry and aren’t looking out for your best interest.

Would you ever consider going on a vacation across the country without bringing a map? It is hard enough to find your way in some places with a map. How hard would it be if you tried this adventure without one? Yet, this is exactly what people do every single day in the online world. They tried to build their own businesses online without having a roadmap to success. Then, after months or years of just wandering around online, they give up in frustration and quit. They walk away saying that the Internet doesn’t work for them. The reason it didn’t work is that they didn’t pick up a map and follow it!

You don’t have to end up lost in the online shuffle. Below I will give you ten steps to help you map out your course and get you started in the right direction. It isn’t everything that you need to know by any stretch of the imagination, but it will give you a basic foundation to build upon.

Consider it your beginner’s map to Internet marketing profits.

1. Choose a targeted market

The biggest mistake most people make when starting a business is that they choose a product and then try to find people who want to buy it. If that is the direction you are starting from on your journey, then you are going the opposite direction from your destination. Wise businesses operate from a different concept. They pick a market first, and then they pick a product those people are searching for. In other words, instead of trying to find leads to sell their product to, they find targeted leads and then ask them what they are wanting to buy.

Don’t even consider starting a business until you know exactly where you are going to get your leads from. Think targeted customers first. Then, you can come up with a product for those individuals. Would you rather have 1,000 hits a day at your site of a general audience OR 10 hits a day of people who are desperate and willing to pay any price to buy your products? If you are smart, you will choose the people who are ready to buy!

2. Develop a Product

Next, you need to develop a product or service for this market. Don’t just jump on the bandwagon of affiliate programs when you come to this step. There are three major ways to selling a product online:

a. You create your own exclusive product.

This is the best opportunity you have. If you develop your own product, you can pick it’s price, sell reprint rights to others, set up an affiliate program, etc. Don’t tell me you can’t do this. Tens of thousands of innovative entrepreneurs have used their own information products to get their careers started. You can to.

Throughout your life, I am sure that there is something you have learned that you can share in a How-To product. Maybe you know someone else who has the right knowledge for a How-To product and you could offer to help them create a product if you both shared the rights to it. Don’t just jump past this opportunity and say it can’t be done.

b. You buy the rights to a product or you JV for an offline product.

You can buy the rights to successful products for $500 – $20,000. If someone else has created a product that you know your targeted market is interested in, offer them a large up-front fee for the rights to it. This way you can get your own product and never have to pay a penny in royalties. You can also search through magazines your targeted market reads and look for products people are selling. Then, give them a call and ask for the exclusive Internet rights to their product for a certain percentage of the profits or an up-front fee.

c. You join an affiliate program.

If you are just starting out online, this can be a good choice. You do have to keep in mind though that it doesn’t offer quite the profit potential that creating your own product or obtaining rights to one has.When choosing an affiliate program, make sure that it is something your targeted market cannot be without. They absolutely have to have it. Also pay special attention to the profits you receive from each sale.

If you are only be paid 5% commissions on the sales of $10 books, you will only be making 50 cents per customer. It would take 2,000 customers just to product $1,000 in profits. You cannot make money like this online! Look for higher priced products and higher commissions…especially commissions in the 25% or higher range.

3. Create a USP

Create a Unique Selling Position for your product or service. Too many companies are just trying to be me-too companies online. You cannot be just like the next guy and expect to make a profit in a global economy. Just going to the next guy’s web site to order is too easy for your customers.

You have to create a Uniqueness to your product or offer. What can you offer that no one else can? Can you offer better guarantees, better customer service, more technical support, faster shipping, or lower prices. Think of something that will set you apart from all of your online competitors and tell in complete detail what it is.

4. Pick a Domain Name and Hosting Service

The next step is to pick a domain name that describes your company, USP, and offer. Try to keep them as short and descriptive about your business as possible. Avoid using dashes or misspellings of your product. Both of these things will cause people to leave out part of your domain if they type it in. Someone else will be getting free traffic that you worked hard to obtain.

For hosting, I personally choose to use Virtualis since they have the Fastest customer service and technical support in the industry. Test them out. They will respond to you within the hour…anytime 24 hours a day. No other company I have ever been with has even come close!

5. Develop a Customer Friendly Site

The next step in the process is to develop your web site and put it up for the world to see. If you are planning to own a full-time Internet business, I recommend that you learn how to design the site yourself using one of dozens of programs which are readily available at any software store.

You will save so much money if you can do the work yourself on just the editing alone as your site grows. If your main business is offline and you are just adding a secondary income, then you may want to consider having a professional do your site for you.

When designing your site, keep the customer in mind always. Provide order forms for online credit card orders. Make all of the links easy to understand. Try to keep your site simple. Think like a customer, not the business owner.

Your customers are not nearly as interested in your business as you are. Make sure to put the benefits of your site and your USP right on top of the site. More than half of the web surfers never drop down past the first screen full of information. So, you have to give them the information they need as quickly as possible. The rules for any type of business are Benefits, Benefits, and more Benefits.

6. Offer a Freebie

One of the major keys to developing traffic and sales at your site is to always offer some type of freebie as a drawing factor. For example, I offer dozens of free reports, weather reports, news, and more. My greatest drawing factor throughout the past 8 months though has been the two free e-books which we offer on our site to people who subscribe to this newsletter.

You need to come up with a freebie no matter what type of business you are in. Create a free report and give it away. Add in a message board or some other type of CGI program on your site. Give a free demo of your software. Create something that you can give away for free on your site to draw in the visitors.

7. Start Your Own Opt-In List

Almost every full-time Internet marketer I know has developed their own Opt-in email list of some type. For most of them, it is a weekly newsletter they send out by email. For others, it may be a Tip of the Day. Other people might just have a list that they send out important updates to.

No matter what you choose to do, odds will be on your side if you concentrate on building a list of loyal email subscribers. Very rarely do customers purchase from you the first time they visit your site. Most of them will get on your list, hang out for a few weeks or months, and then they buy from you. They have to get to know you before they are willing to spend their money with you.

I have found that the most effective leads come from offline advertising. For example, you could purchase ads in a popular targeted magazine for your business. You could also purchase a postcard in one of the card decks. Start up a co-op and get 10 other people to advertise with you and run your own ads for free. Offline leads which come to your site often turn out to contain a much higher percentage of buyers than any of the online advertising methods.
Once you put our short 10 step outline together you have a basic map to creating your own Internet success story. You wouldn’t consider going on a trip without a map. So don’t try to go it alone online without a map.
Terry Dean’s Brand New Fr-e eBook, “10 Quick and Easy Ways to Increase Profits to ANY Web Site Overnight!” Reveals More Time Tested Proven Internet Marketing Secrets Than 99% of the Paid Products Available…Showing You Step-By-Step How to Increase Your Traffic, Drop Your Expenses, and Drive Your Profits Through the Roof

These are the best local business directories

Getting your site listed and ranked in local search results takes a bit of elbow grease to do it properly. We always like to start with this list and then research speciality directories to list businesses in. To help with your online rankings we recommend setting up accounts at all of these sites. Or if you want us to do it for you we have a low cost SEO options that can help.

There is also a new 12 Week Mastery Training system that will help you get more done in 12 weeks that typically would take over a year. Be sure to check that out as manually listing to all of these 50 sites could take some time.

Top 50 Business Directory Listings

  1. Google Places
  2. CrunchBase
  3. Bing Places
  4. Linkedin
  5. Super Pages
  6. Yellow Pages
  7. Yelp
  8. Local
  9. White Pages
  10. Manta
  11. Angel.co
  12. Merchant Circle
  13. Yahoo!
  14. Yellow Book
  15. City Search
  16. MapQuest
  17. BBB
  18. Angie’s List
  19. Biznik
  20. Foursquare
  21. Area Connect
  22. Magic Local
  23. Mojo Pages
  24. Yellow Bot
  25. Local Pages
  26. Yellow Wise
  27. Get Fave
  28. Tupalo
  29. Zip Local
  30. EZ Local
  31. City Squares
  32. US City
  33. Kudzu
  34. Express Update
  35. Alexa
  36. Dmoz
  37. Dizila
  38. Locality
  39. Brown Book
  40. Judy’s Book
  41. BOTW
  42. City Slick
  43. Business Journals
  44. Just Click Local
  45. Twibs
  46. Directory Company
  47. Yellow Assistance
  48. US GEO
  49. Navteq
  50. ABC Directory

Google is Still a Simple Machine.
And This is How it Works…

Updated: Feb 28, 2017

I’m gonna keep this one short, because it’s truly a very simple matter to rank a site, a page or a video in Google’s SERPs right now.

And before I just dive in and lay it out… I need to make it clear that though Google is indeed a “complicated” machine, the bottom line is that it’s still just a machine.

Google can’t “detect” good content. They can’t “detect” the motive of a link. And they can’t “detect” a legitimate site from one that’s been built for promotional purposes. They truly can’t.

If they truly could detect those things – then why are they so heavy-handed when it comes to handing out penalties, manually de-indexing link networks (that they have to physically discover), insisting that people use “nofollow” when linking to their own stuff, and actively encouraging people to report “link sellers”?

 

The SEO recipe is simple. Here are the ingredients:

1) Unique content

Whether your ranking target is a single page (like a press release URL), a YouTube video, a 5-page minisite, a 20-page official client site, or a 1,000 page ecommerce store… the bottom line is that everything that Google indexes on that property needs to be unique, and not published elsewhere.

The content should just be naturally relevant to the respective page’s title tag (keyword target). No need to worry about keyword density levels.

2) Relevant, focused title tag(s).

This is still the primary ranking signal, pretty much across the board. Your target keyword needs to be prominently featured in the target page’s title tag. So if you want the homepage of a site to rank for “Cosmetic Dentist Phoenix”, then the title tag should be something like: “Dr. John Doe – The #1 Cosmetic Dentist in Phoenix, AZ”. No need to stuff, repeat or overdo it.

And on that note…
3) Just target 1, or at most 2 keyword targets per “thing”.

By “thing” I basically mean URL (video, page, root domain, etc.). So this means that your title tags should only contain 1-2 keyword targets, essentially.

4) Make sure it loads fast.

This only pertains to sites that you’re hosting. Use tools like GTMetrix.com to see how it scores on the load-time front.

5) Only have Google index “full content” pages.

By “full” I mean each page on your site that a spider can access should have minimum 300 words of text, all unique. Basically, this is so you can avoid tripping a Panda penalty.

6) Get high PR backlinks, period.

Depending on the keyword, it could literally just require a handful. Whether these are white hat (guest-posts or tiered/pyramids), gray hat (High PR niche posts, High PR squared, etc.) or all out black hat (buying links from other sites directly, doing SAPE blasts, etc.)… it truly doesn’t matter. The quality of the links is basically just a risk level.

The result will be the same. A PR4 link is a PR4 link, regardless of whether it’s “real” or not. The only variables that matters are cost and purpose. If your goal is to rank an off-site traffic asset that can easily be “rebuilt” or resubmitted, etc… then you should get the cheapest High PR links possible, in the most consistent format possible.

If you’re ranking a client’s official website, and they’ve got the budget, then acquire all of your High PR links with guest posting primarily, and some tiered linking (which takes longer to build pagerank, but is a good complement to the guestposts).

Vary your anchors with these High PR links. Ideally, every link should have a different anchor or variation.

How many do you need? No idea. Depends on the market, keyword, etc. Start with at least 5-10, and then just keep ’em coming steadily until you’re on the 1st page.

7) Throw in a press release & some local business listings (if it’s a local biz) for nothing other than diversity… This is not really where your rankings will come from, but it’s a good way to naturally round out the link profile, and keep your High PR stuff a bit more under the radar.
With these, it is literally ESSENTIAL that you’re not using keyword anchors. Use branded, & naked URLs only.
And finally…

8) Do this with something FRESH.

This is not a rescue recipe, for an old site that has a history. This is for new stuff: New web sites, new videos, new blogs, new authority URLs (like a press release on PRWeb or SBWire), etc. Fresh stuff will rank fast.

And that’s it.
That is how you rank literally anything, for anything, in 2017 – all day long.

Sound too simple? Too easy?

Well, why don’t you run a split test. Try this approach, and see how it stacks up against creating “good content”, and waiting for the world to share it naturally.

Feel free to report back with your findings 🙂

But in all seriousness, folks… it really is that simple. So don’t be paralyzed, or stuck in the mindset of having to do “everything right” and follow Google’s “guidelines” to a tee.

This is what works. It works basically every time, barring few random exceptions.
Need Help?

PopNet Media has all the SEO plans that will give your site that search engine presence that you expect. Contact us today to find out which plan will suite your needs.

I have actually been publishing Sites because August 1996. Although I have worked at enhancing exposure for sites through all those years, I have actually never seen content cannot bring traffic, links, and leads. I have actually even enjoyed spam blogs drive traffic, links, and leads.

When Web online marketers smugly tell you that just publishing content does not accomplish anything, I understand they have actually never ever done it (right). I ‘d like to state it’s easy to release content that fails to attract traffic but when even spam blogs can generate traffic, links, and leads you need to ask exactly what these marketers are doing that they can not even match the performance of spam blog sites.

It doesn’t take amazingly viral material to earn links. You don’t even require great material to earn links. People link to Wikipedia all the time, and yet most of their articles are anything but “very good content” due to the fact that on a website with countless articles the huge majority are going to be of mediocre quality or below. It is statistically impossible for anything else to take place.

The “quality” of your material has nothing to do with whether another person connects to it. People will connect to anything that they believe is useful. In fact, not to put too fine a point on it, a great deal of actually bad SEO articles earn links simply because they were composed by someone whom the linkers understand, follow, or trust. That’s a dreadful reason to connect to any SEO post, but the majority of link-earning SEO posts earn links for those reasons more than any others.

There is no such thing as a universal or objective standard of quality. Google certainly doesn’t use any requirements of quality consistently. By their own admission they make sure customers can find well-known brands in their search engine result even if the brands are captured violating search engine guidelines (although in a couple of egregious cases some severe penalties were distributed till some corrections were made).

You’re simply not going to win any argument based upon the presumption that simply releasing material can not achieve anything on the Web. The information is against you. The search results page protest you. The Web marketing mantra of you MUST promote your content represents a terribly distorted version of a simple truth: active promotion speeds up the acquisition of traffic, links, and leads.
Why Merely Publishing Material Suffices

We reside in a world of RSS feeds, hyper crawlers, and DNS-aware Sites. It’s an unusual Site that cannot get indexed within a couple of weeks, unless the publisher takes actions to prevent that indexing.

Publishing an RSS feed attracts crawl particularly if your Site PINGs. If you are simply releasing a blog site on a platform like WordPress you don’t need to do anything other than release posts. Let the blog’s default habits of sending out PING notices work for you. Your material will be indexed, in some cases within a matter of days, in the worst cases I have actually tracked within a few weeks.

That is passive promo. You do nothing however publish the material.

Of course, you can now feed RSS information to all sorts of social networks autoposting tools however I think about that to be active promotion. Any plugin or module you use to autopost your material to social media is also active promo.

Hyperactive crawlers are those busy little bots that are looking for RSS feeds and new content. Bing and Google run hyperactive crawlers but so do numerous RSS feed directories.

Those crawlers index your content so that it can start making traffic from search websites (consisting of feed reader and blog search services).

Don’t assume that all hyper crawlers are rogue crawlers. Rogue crawlers do not honor “robotics” meta instructions or “robots.txt”. Rogue crawlers might use phony user agents. Rogue crawlers take your full content, neglecting your RSS feed.

DNS-aware Sites are typically disavowed by Web online marketers who don’t understand that these websites are not just harmless, they actually help you. A DNS-aware Website keeps track of the activation of domain names. It may send out a crawler to scan the site or it may just release “whois” details about the website.

These Websites exist for a few factors. The majority of them carry some advertising. Some of them are tied to Web marketing competitive intelligence tools. A really small number of them appear to be working with or subsidiary to business profile websites.

There is nothing incorrect with these type of links, a number of which drive crawl to your freshly published Websites. Web marketers tend to presume the internet search engine will punish them for having these kinds of links but the search engines understand you did not create the links. They either ignore these links or give them very little weight. But they do drive crawl.
Random Queries Develop Real Exposure for Your Content

Ask a group of Web marketers what they consider to be “long-tail” questions and they seldom provide a definition that matches those used by Bing and Google. Google often specifies a long-tail inquiry as any query that drives 10 or fewer visitors within a 28/30-day duration.

There is no length demand for a long-tail query. They can be 1-word queries or 20-word questions. The “long tail of search” consists of seldom used queries. There are a Great Deal Of these kinds of inquiries.

More notably, these long-tail inquiries often reflect specific user needs. When your material is a clear match for a long-tail inquiry you have an excellent possibility of making a conversion. I have actually seen these sort of conversions on both high-traffic and low-traffic Sites.

In fact, I once ran a comprehensive analysis of where the cash was originating from on a number of large lead-generation Websites with millions of regular monthly check outs. On every site a minimum of 65 % of the earnings was originating from queries with 4-to-8 terms. Those critical 1-word and 2-word generic inquiries that were so vital to the marketing goals drove far less income than was predicted by designs built on click-through rate analysis.
[You are losing out on weekly SEO case studies, link acquisition pointers, answers to questions, technical ideas, and more. Click here to subscribe NOW …]
If you can only publish 1,000 pages on your site that each make no greater than 1 visitor each month you can depend on 1,000 highly interested visitors monthly. Your conversion rate doesn’t depend upon how popular the questions you rank for might be; conversions depend on how well you fulfill the visitor’s expectations and how well you earn their trust.

Better yet, if you’re making 1,000+ visitors per month through real long-tail query traffic, you’ll make natural links and build brand recognition, which means those individuals will remember and search for your site once again.

All you have to do is publish useful material.
Search Recommendation Optimization Disregards Arbitrary Goals

An arbitrary goal is anything like “we have to rank for [2-word term] or “we need 1,000 visitors each month”. You can not optimize through approximate objectives. In fact, setting arbitrary goals for a website degrades optimization.

You can develop traffic that is not ideal. You can develop traffic outside the search optimization channel. People do this all the time however they label it as “SEO” because they have no idea exactly what else to call it.

Search recommendation optimization simply develops the very best possible relationship between an online search engine and a website. A new Site does not optimally earn traffic from high-volume inquiries unless its content spikes into virality (and you can not require that no matter how many “viral marketing” posts you read).

Virality is random, inspecific, unforeseeable, and genuine sufficient to take place totally on its own. If you are nudging your material into some sharing funnel it is not true viral material even if you gather numerous thousands of shares or links.

Optimization is everything about enhancing how the system performs according to its maximum practical capacity. What you are doing is not SEO if you push your performance metrics beyond the limit of what natural search optimization can produce.
The Length of Your Material Does Not Matter

Long content has actually become the brand-new Web spam. 2 years ago I published a definition for content spam that, while still legitimate today, is reasonably insufficient for the Long-form Material Spam that has emerged from the Web marketing community. My original definition was:

Online it’s easy enough to determine content spam because:

It’s only there to offer context for advertising (or a lead gen type)– OR
It’s just there to supply context for 1 or more marketing links– OR
It’s there to serve as a place holder and still attempt to get some traffic

Long-form content spam contributes to this list by pretending to be comprehensive, total, and authoritative. A couple of examples of Long-form material spam include:

Articles including lots of quotes with little or no transitional context
Articles which contain lots of images (especially screen captures).
Articles that contain many unassociated truths with little or no transitional context.
Articles that are written to cover as numerous “long tail” queries as possible.
Articles that are difficult to read because of incessant popups and calls to action.

Long-form spam in some cases earns a lot of links and draws a great deal of discourse but it has the tendency to fall into the class of material that is just there to obtain you to purchase something, register for some training course, or register for a Webinar. And, honestly, the people probably to count on Long-form Content Spam are the marketers who have actually built up huge followings. They are milking their audiences for all they can enter terms of sales and referrals. The user experience is of no importance to them.

If the content were really crucial it wouldn’t be obscured by popup registration types and checkered with regular calls to action (often 2 lots or more) or long sequences of page-wide images. You’re simply utilizing long short articles to draw people into your popup types and calls-to-action. You’re not actually attempting to produce a valuable, helpful Site experience.

Somebody who is totally unknown might be able to build up a successful Site with Long-form Content Spam but I have yet to see it occur. Every example of a successful Long-form Material Spam website that other individuals have brought to my interest has gained from other aspects, frequently extremely aggressive marketing practices. The content would never succeed by itself because random visitors would be switched off by the awful user experience. One advantage of aggressive promotion is that people are more likely to endure aggressive on-page promo if they are available in through an off-site aggressive promotion channel. They are already in a tolerant state of mind.

The truth the internet search engine presently reward Long-form Spam doesn’t indicate it’s not spammy. It just indicates the internet search engine’ standards have actually not yet reached the current spammy practice. Long-form Spam has to do with where guest posting remained in 2012.

While it’s true that nagging your visitors gets them to sign up for whatever you are selling (we run advertisements for our newsletter and SEO services), aggressive nagging that obscures the user experience has actually constantly been a hallmark of a number of the sort of Sites that online search engine have long-since discarded in the trashbin of bad user experiences.

You might be content to milk Long-form Spam for all it deserves now, however do not lie to yourself about what you are doing. It’s spam, plain and simple, and absolutely nothing more.

Brief content posts are still completely great. What matters is whether they deliver the goods to the visitor. Artists, cartoonists, humorists, and even major news Websites still release a lot of short articles that go to fewer than 500 words and they remain to top the search results page for lots of high-volume questions.

If length truly mattered my own 1,000-2,000 word posts would have been buried now. I sometimes write 3,000 word short articles however I never count the words and I stop when I can’t add anything of value. I anticipate people to read my posts. I anticipate a small portion of people to click the advertisements. I’m a “material first” marketer. I’m not scared to lose your attention since I know you’ll be back.

I have actually been doing this for nearly Twenty Years. It never fails to work. In some cases it takes a little longer than we want.
Yes, Seo Does Include Active Promotion.

Lest I leave you with the impression that I am stating you’re not enhancing for search if you actively promote your content, that is not the point I want to make. You can build links, target inquiries, and do all that SEO things and it can make a contribution towards optimizing your website’s relationship with the online search engine.

What is essential to keep in mind is that SEO should always support the business choice. If the business choice is to do absolutely no active promo then the worst thing you can do is conclude that your hands are tied and the job is destined failure. I publish Websites that prosper on content alone. Any social networks sharing came long after the fact and remains a secondary consideration.

It’s the content that matters most, not how you promote it. Make content that you yourself will wish to read in a couple of years and it WILL last that long (and it will succeed). Simply correspond.

This is something I get asked about all the time from small business owners.  Please look at our responsive web design service for full details.

 

WHAT?

Responsive web design (RWD) is a technique to web design targeted at crafting sites to offer a most favorable viewing and interaction experience throughout a large range of gadgets (from desktop computer monitors to any mobile devices; Recommendation: Wikipedia) In simple words, Responsive web design indicates a design that adjusts to its environment.

WHY?

The popularity of the use of different sizes of gadgets is increasing ever since. Making use of mobile phones to search the internet accounts the half of the overall users all over the world. Enhancing mobile users have actually made it imperative to create websites that exclusively fit these different sizes, which is extremely tedious. Thus, the advancement must be performed in such a method, that the site must fit huge or little any screen with minimal differences and changes.

HOW?

Responsiveness is the capability to read and browse with ease offered minimum resizing, less scroll and minimum panning. Now the question is, THE BEST WAYS TO do this with minimum efforts while making the design pixel perfect?

Responsive website design uses fluid to adjust to the container along with that it uses, proportionate grids, versatile images and CSS3 media inquiries.

The fluid or liquid idea uses percentage instead of pixels that is otherwise utilized in repaired principles. The advantage is that you do not have to consider the device size; setting a portion view will make it fit perfectly, the design will adjust to the size of the device by itself.

Versatile images are sized in relative devices to prevent them from spreading outside the container while advancement.

Media questions judge the ability of the device. They assist the site to adjust according to the gadget and its requirements such as width and height of viewport & gadget, orientation (landscape or portrait mode of the device), resolution et al. to make the design look ideal.

Adaptive and responsive is frequently misused and used as synonyms but they are not. There is a distinction between fixed, fluid and responsive web-development.

Adaptive websites use media inquiries to target certain media i.e. gadget sizes, displays, mobile device screens, etc. whereas, responsive sites are constructed with the fluid to adapt to the environment aspect easily and make use of media questions to manage the resizing in accordance with the device or web browser.

Conclusion

A responsive site is a fundamental shift to how we’ll create our websites for years to come. PopNet Media has currently recognized the shift and provides every site with a responsive design. All the websites we have actually designed and developed are completely responsive to every sizes and shape of the device. Here’s one we love:

project-thumb-3

SEO audits are the single best method to recognize why your SEO project isn’t working.

It is the very first activity my agency participates in when bringing on a new customer.

In this article, I’m going to show you how you can carry out a total SEO audit in 2016.

SEO Audit

Remember two things prior to you begin:

1. The time financial investment for any audit depends on the size of your website.

2. An excellent SEO audit is all about asking the ideal concerns.

What is an SEO Audit?

An SEO audit reveals methods for you to improve your SEO campaign. The goal is to recognize powerlessness in your project that are injuring your performance. This procedure will provide you a list of action items that you need to repair. If you act on this list, you should see enhancements in your SEO efficiency.
When Should You Do An Audit?

As I discussed, we constantly perform an audit when we induce a brand-new client. But, we will likewise audit a current project every quarter. This is to guarantee that we didn’t miss anything and to determine any brand-new problems. An audit is constantly a great way to examine our performance.

There are 2 times we perform audits:

1. at the beginning of every new project
2. once a quarter

Now that you comprehend the basics, let’s jump into the initial step of the SEO audit.

The Total 9 Step SEO Audit

Follow these 9 tasks and you will leave no stone left unturned. Remember, an effective SEO campaign is the product of hundreds of favorable ranking elements. That is why it is critical that you analyze every detail of your campaign. You don’t need to be 100 % ideal, however that ought to be the goal.

Let’s start:
Action 1: What Are Your Strategic Objectives?

Strategic Objectives

Goal: to identify what your long-lasting goals are for your SEO campaign and company.

I have stated this before and I will state this again:

SEO is a method to an end.

It is absolutely nothing more than a marketing channel to grow your business.

That’s why your Strategic Objectives need to be exactly what your company is trying to attain through SEO.

Clear Strategic Objectives keep your project focused and assist you attain your objectives.

If you currently have a Tactical Objective, then this is the time to examine it.

Are your goals Particular, Measurable, Achievable, Pertinent, and Timely (S.M.A.R.T.)?

You need to improve them if they are not.

If you do not have Tactical Objectives for your SEO project, then now is time to produce them.

Here are some examples of Strategic Goals for an SEO project using the S.M.A.R.T. concept:

“Blue Widget Inc. will quickly enhance its natural search exposure by 50 % within the next 6 months.”.
“Blue Widget Inc. will easily grow from 20 connecting root domains to over 100 link root domains within the next 6 months.”.
“Blue Widget Inc. will easily grow its lead volume from natural search by 20 % within the next 12 months.”.

Your Tactical Objective should be a mix of SEO KPIs and business KPIs.

Now let’s go into keyword analysis.
Task 2: Keyword Analysis.

Keyword Analysis.

Goal: to figure out whether the existing keyword targeting technique deserves it. And, to discover untapped keywords that might result in “simple” wins.

You have to reexamine your current set of keywords before jumping head initially into your audit.

The first thing you want to ask is:.

Are you targeting the ideal keywords?

Oftentimes, the keywords that some businesses are going after are way out of their league.

They believe they can win on “homerun” keywords … But they will more than likely end up failing.

A great audit will help you identify the quality of your keywords.

Typically, I will have the customer target less competitive long tail keywords.

My group and I refer to these keywords as “simple wins”.

It is a thorough practice to examine your current set of keywords.

You ought to do this on a quarterly basis.

It’s constantly much better to focus your resources on keywords that are carrying out well.

Do not spread your resources across numerous keywords.

Separate your winners and go after those.

However, now you are most likely questioning:.

How do I understand if I’m targeting the “best” keywords?

Think of your keywords as goals.

Every keyword that you choose to target is an objective you want to achieve for your SEO campaign.

That indicates you have to make use of the S.M.A.R.T. principle.

Specific.

You need to select a specific set of keywords to target.

A list of a thousand keyword is not specific.

Choose 10, 20, or 100 keywords depending your budget plan and resources.

Quantifiable.

You should measure the performance of your keywords.

There are some SEOs that say you shouldn’t track keywords anymore.

I concur that tracking keywords without tracking other important KPIs isn’t really efficient.

However, tracking your core keywords is an outstanding way to see how Google is valuing your website.

It’s likewise a way to measure the effect of your link acquisition.

To measure the performance of your keywords, I utilize Pro Rank Tracker.

Attainable.

Are you targeting keywords that are beyond exactly what your website is capable of?

The truth is:.

New sites battle to rank for competitive keywords.

That’s since:.

The sites that rank for competitive keywords are aged and trusted.
These same websites will be more authoritative than yours since they have actually been getting backlinks for years.
Considering that they are ranking for competitive keywords, that indicates they will likewise have a much larger budget than you. This will enable them to purchase authoritative link positionings to maintain their position.

You need to be realistic.

If your site is new, then you ought to target long-tail keywords.

Don’t let your ego identify exactly what keywords you wish to go after.

I’m not stating you are egotistical.

I’m saying that because I have let my ego identify my keyword selection procedure in the past.

It went something like this:.

“Guy, I’m so proficient at SEO and I can literally rank for anything.”.

Yup.

That’s how I used to be.
Moral of the story: do not let your ego determine your project.

Be realistic and use the information to identify your path.

Relevant.

This must be obvious, however your keyword needs to pertain to exactly what your business does.

Time-Bound.

How long do you believe it will take you to rank for your existing set of keywords?

You have to put a due date.

Remember, improving your site’s performance for a keyword is goal. You need to aim to achieve that goal as fast as possible.

The S.M.A.R.T. concept is just the primary step to confirming your current keyword set.

You now have to assess the competition for those keywords.
Action 3: Competitor Analysis.

Rival Analysis.

Goal: to validate your keywords and find missed link opportunities.

A great audit will assess the competition for a few factors:.

Initially, to see whether a keyword is too competitive.
Second, to see what kinds of material is carrying out well for the rivals.
Third, to scrape the rival’s link profile for possible link chances.

Keep in mind:.

You have to examine your rivals to verify your keyword choices.

You need to be asking yourself:.

“Are my keyword choices too ambitious?”.
Or, “are my keyword selections too conservative?”.

We split our rival analysis into 2 sections.

The very first is just a fast analysis of PA and DA in the SERPS.

You will need the Moz toolbar for this.

Let’s state we wished to rank for the keyword “marketing automation”.

Enter “marketing automation” into Google and scan the outcomes.

PA – DA Analysis-min.

We search for sites that have a DA less than 50. In this case, there is one site ranking for the keyword “marketing automation” with a DA less than 50.

DA is a decent gauge for figuring out whether a keyword is worth going after or not.

At scale, this procedure is the quickest way to eliminate keywords from your list.

Bear in mind:.

Competitors is all relative.

For instance, it would be foolish to target “marketing automation” if your website is brand-new. However, if you have a well established website with authority, then it might be something to consider.

The 2nd analysis is more in-depth since we are trying to find link chances.

I will not go unfathomable into this, however make use of Ahrefs or Majestic to examine the link profiles of your rivals.

Read this overview of find out how to examine competitors.

Are There Any Low Hanging Fruits/ “Easy” Wins?

Now let me show you how you can find low hanging fruits.

We will utilize SEM Rush and Google Browse Console for this.

Enter into Google Search Console and click on “Search Traffic” and “Browse Analytics”.
Select “Impressions” and “Position”.
Then arrange the outcomes by “Position” will the lowest ranking position at the top.

Like this:.

Google-Search-Console-min.

These are low hanging fruits that you can target.

If you website isn’t ranking for any keywords, then you will have to utilize SEM Rush to find low hanging fruits.

Go to SEM Rush.
Get in a competitor URL.
Go to “Organic Research study” and “Positions”.
Sort the keyword list to reveal least expensive search volume keywords.

I prefer to start with the lower volume keywords due to the fact that they are the simplest to rank for. Here are some low hanging fruits I discovered digging through BodyBuilding.com’s traffic information:.

SEM Rush-min.

Now let me show you how to perform a technical analysis.
Step 4: Technical Analysis.

Technical Analysis.

Objective: to identify technical problems that are harming user experience and hurting your internet search engine efficiency.

Technical issues can pester your website’s SEO efficiency.

Fortunately is that you have tools like Shouting Frog SEO Spider at your side.

These tools will assist you determine a number of the prevalent problems.

Let’s begin:.
How Fast Does Your Site Load?

How fast your site loads effects user experience in either a favorable or negative method.

That’s why it is at the top of the Technical Analysis list.

Usage Pingdom and Google’s site speed tool to obtain your benchmarks.

Any website that takes longer than 3 seconds to load has room for enhancement. It is ideal if you can your site load under 1 second, but this is tough.

Here are some resources that will accelerate your site:.

Ways to Improve Your Page Load Speed by 70.39 % in 45 Minutes.
10 Ways to Accelerate Your Site– and Improve Conversion by 7 %.
11 Low-Hanging Fruits for Enhancing Website Speed (and Conversions).

Is the Website Mobile Friendly?

This is a no brainer, however you need to check whether your website is mobile friendly or not.

Google considers this to be a strong ranking factor, so do not take it lightly.

Use Google’s mobile friendly check for the analysis.

The option is very simple here:.

If your site isn’t mobile friendly, then make it mobile friendly.

 

 

Sitemaps

You website should have a sitemap because it helps with indexation.

If you are on WordPress, Yoast will automatically create one for you.

If you aren’t using Yoast then install the XML Sitemap plugin.

For those on custom-builds or non-Wordpress websites, you will have to take the traditional route.

“site:” Search

Go into Google search “site:yourwebsite.com”.

Site Colon Search-min

This will show you how well your site is indexed.

If you site isn’t showing as the first result, then you likely have a penalty.

Or, you are blocking the search engine from crawling your website.
Is There Duplicate Content?

Duplicate content can plague your website and could land your website a Panda penalty.

Ecommerce stores are most susceptible to duplicate content issues because they will copy manufacturer product descriptions.

To top it off, they will also use cookie-cutter META information for those pages.

This creates a duplicate content tsunami.

Let me show you the issues with duplicate META data first:

Duplicate META Data

Duplicate META data is most prevalent on Ecommerce websites.

This is because many Ecommerce websites have many pages with similar products.

As a result, they will get lazy and paste similar META descriptions on pages.

This isn’t a good practice.

If your Ecommerce has many similar pages, then you should consider consolidating them. There is no reason to have several pages for different colors or sizes of the same product.

Once you have taken care of this issue, then you need to write unique descriptions for every single page.

Yes, that’s right. Every single page.

You should strive to have unique META data and unique content on every single page on your website.

This will take a ton of effort and resources, but it’s worth it in the end.

Remember: you don’t have to complete it in one day.

If you improve only 10 pages a day, you will have 3,650 optimized pages within a year.

To find duplicate META data you can use Screaming Frog SEO Spider and Google Search Console.

Let’s start with Screaming Frog:

Enter your URL and start the scan

Go to “Meta Description”, on “Filter” dropdown select “Duplicate”, and “Export”.

Duplicat META Descriptions-min

The next place to look for duplicate META descriptions is in Google Search Console.

Go into Google Search Console and go to “Search Appearance” and “HTML Improvements”:

Meta Descriptions – GSC-min

In this section you will find duplicate META descriptions and title tags.

Page-Level Duplicate Content

Now that you have identified all duplicate META data, you now need to find page-level duplicate content.

To perform this task you will need to use Siteliner.

This tool will show you what pages share the same or very similar content.

Go to Siteliner.com and enter your target website. Click on “Duplicate Content” and see what pages are suffering from it.

Siteliner-min

Keep in mind that this tool isn’t always accurate. For example, it may not know that you have “noindexed” your category pages. So, it will likely classify those pages as duplicate content. Use your best judgement.
Are There 404 Errors (With Link Equity)?

Not all 404 errors are equal.

First, let me dispel a common myth that “all 404 errors are bad for SEO”.

This isn’t true.

404s are an effective tool for telling search engine that the page no longer exists.

When a search engine like Google finds a 404, it will remove that page from the index.

For intentional 404 errors, this is exactly what you want.

Think about it: would you want someone to find this dead 404 page through a Google search?

Of course not.

That’s why Google removes them because it isn’t helpful for the user.

With that myth dispelled, there ARE 404 errors can actually hurt your site’s performance:

404 pages that have backlinks.

These types of 404s are leaking authority on your site.

What you want to do is reclaim these backlinks by 301 redirecting the 404 page to a relevant page on your site.

If there isn’t a relevant page, then redirect it to the homepage.

To find 404 errors, I recommend you use Google Search Console:

Go to “Crawl” and “Crawl Errors”. Click on the “Not Found” tab to see your site’s 404 errors:

404 errors-min
Is Your Site Architecture Efficient for SEO?

Many audits skip right past site architecture, but this is a big mistake.

Most websites are not designed with SEO in mind.

Weirdly, this isn’t always a bad thing. That’s because many businesses create their website based on what they believe the user wants.

You should always be user-centric with your SEO strategy.

But, you still need to guide and please the search engine at the same time.

A strong site architecture makes both the users and the search engines happy.

When examining site architecture ask the following questions:

Is the navigation clean or is it cluttered?
Are the internal links using effective anchor text?
Can you improve the navigation to make it easier for users and the search engines?

Are the URL Structures SEO Optimized?

We always analyze the URL structure during the audit to make sure they are SEO friendly.

But, we are also careful at this stage as well.

You do not want to change URL structures if the client’s site is performing well.

The reason is because you have to 301 redirect the old URL to the new URL.

301 redirects are spotty and won’t always send the trust and authority from the old URL.

This means you could end up losing rankings for an extended period of time.

Changing your URL to a more optimized and clean version will likely help your site in the long run.

You just have to be willing to lose some organic traffic upfront. Or, you can just avoid changing the URL at all.

Now, if the client isn’t ranking for anything, we will always suggest to change the URL structure (if it’s bad).

You have to use your discretion and remember that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.

 

Inspect these guides for additional support:

10 Ways making Your Website More Mobile Friendly
Google’s Mobile Friendly Guide

Exists Keyword Cannibalization?

Among the most essential elements to look for in an audit is keyword cannibalization.

“Keyword cannibalization” is when two pages are competing for the exact same keyword.

This can puzzle Google and compel it to make a choice on what page is “finest” for the search question.

It’s constantly better to direct Google instead of letting it make decisions.

You should do away with keyword cannibalization to attain this objective.

There is one form of keyword cannibalization that is most common:

When you optimize the homepage and a subpage for the exact same keyword.

This is most common on the local level.

Example:

Let’s state it’s a regional accident legal representative from Chicago.

The homepage title would resemble this:

“Chicago Personal Injury Attorney|Awesome Law Firm”.

At the same time the customer will likewise have a subpage optimized like:.

“Finest Chicago Injury Lawyer|Awesome Law Firm”.

These needs to be prevented.

Select one page to enhance for “Chicago Personal Injury Legal representative” and unoptimize the contending page.

There is another cannibalization problem you have to search for and it includes your blog.

There is nothing incorrect with writing about the same subjects more than once.

But in excess, it can cause some confusion.

Google will have a hard time to identify exactly what page is most authoritative for that keyword.

More notably, Google wants you to compose comprehensive, original, and well-thought-out content.

Not short, thin short articles that do not fully discuss a topic.

There are exceptions to the rule, but thin material ought to be prevented for a lot of companies.

Remember that effective and well-developed content carries out much better in the internet search engine and will produce better user engagement.

On the contrary, releasing thin, underdeveloped content will likely cause keyword cannibalization and Google might interpret your activity as long-tail keyword manipulation.

If that occurs, the Panda algorithm will kick your website to the curb.

With that said, let me reveal you how you can rapidly identify keyword cannibalization issues:.

Open Yelling Frog SEO Spider.

Enter your site and start the scan:.

1-min.

Go to “Page Titles”:.

Titles-min.

Get in one of your primary keywords into the search bar (this will reveal you all pages contending for that keyword).

Look through your page titles and recognize pages that might be competing for the exact same keywords.
Exist Redirect Issues?

There are four types of redirects that can injure a website’s SEO efficiency:.

302 redirects.
reroute chains.
non-preferred version of domain not 301ing to chosen.
non-secured variation of domain not 301ing to secured version.

Let’s start with 302 redirects.

302 Redirects.

302 redirects are “short-term” redirects and do not pass authority. 302s need to be altered to 301 redirects to pass link authority.

To see if you have any 302s, open Shouting Frog SEO Spider.

Enter your target URL and begin the scan.
Go to the “Response Codes” tab.
Click the “Filter” dropdown and choose “Redirection 3xx”.
Click “Export” to export all 302 redirects.

Redirects-min.

Redirect Chains.

Redirect chains are when there are a string of redirects connected together.

Like so:.

Reroute Chains.

Breaking the chain will send out all authority to the final destination page (instead of partial authority).

Here’s how you find redirect chains with Shrieking Frog SEO Spider:.

Go to “Configuration” and click on “Spider”.
Click the “Advanced”, choose “Always Follow Redirects”, and click “Ok”.
Enter your target URL and start the scan.
After the scan is total go to “Reports” and click “Redirect Chains”.

Reroute Chains-min.

Is the non-preferred version of the domain 301 redirecting to the liking variation?

Every website owners have to decide what version of their website they want to show to their users.

Some individuals prefer the “www” while others prefer non-www. domains. Understand that whichever one you choose will not have an impact on your SEO efficiency.

Google treats them the same way, so it is a matter of choice.

Problems occur if you do not reroute the non-preferred domain to the chosen.

For instance, let’s say you choose to go with “www.awesomewebsite.com”.

By doing so, www. becomes your preferred domain.

And now, the non-www. becomes your non-preferred domain and vice versa.

You must 301 reroute your non-preferred domain to the chosen. Otherwise, you will end up with two duplicate sites AND you will leak authority.

I have actually discovered that websites built on customized platforms will suffer from this problem.

The designers underestimate the consequences of keeping 2 variations of the site live.

They typically will not 301 reroute the non-preferred version of a domain to the chosen.

In essence, if you do not redirect, you have 2 duplicate websites.

I utilize this tool to see if the appropriate redirection has been done.

301 Redirects-min.

Is the non-secure variation of the site 301 rerouting to the secure variation?

Let’s just state that the shift to SSL hasn’t been quite.

Lots of websites have made an excellent choice to protect their sites with a certificate.

However, many are having problem with the application the certification.

Many customers forget to 301 reroute the non-secure (http) site to the safe (https). This has a comparable impact of not redirecting a non-preferred domain to the preferred.

Determining this concern is basic:.

Go to your target URL: https://www.gotchseo.com/.
On the address bar in your internet browser, eliminate the “s” from http and hit get in.

It must redirect back to the protected variation.

If it does not, then you have to get it repaired!

You can also utilize the tool above to inspect as well.
Is the Site Being Indexed Well?

Your site can just get traffic if your pages are indexed in Google. That’s why it’s constantly a smart idea making sure your ENTIRE website is being indexed well.

A good place to start is with your robots.txt file.

robots.txt.

Often by mishap, website owners will obstruct the online search engine from crawling their site.

That’s why you have to audit your robots.txt file to make sure that your website is being crawled well.

The command you need to look for in your robots.txt file is “disallow”.

Robots-min.

If you utilize this improperly, you might stop search engines from crawling your website.

The specific command you wish to look for is “Disallow:/”– this instructs online search engine spiders not to crawl your site.

 

Over-Optimized URLs

In attempt to game the search engine, some clients will keyword things their URLs. Keyword stuffing anything on your site is never ever a great practice. In fact, it will likely injure your efficiency more than assist it.

Here is an example of a keyword stuffed URL that we encounter a lot:

http://www.coolwidgets.com/cool-widgets/cool-widgets-with-buttons

You will observe that “cool widgets” remains in the URL three times. Whether deliberate or not, it will harm a page’s efficiency.

I recommend eliminating the subfolder “cool-widgets” so the URL appear like this:

http://www.coolwidgets.com/cool-widgets-with-buttons
Are Internal Hyperlinks Injected the Right Way?

Ineffective/non-strategic internal linking can confuse the online search engine. Internal links are expect to be clear and are usage specific match anchor text.

If you have a page about “blue widgets”, then “blue widgets” need to be your internal anchor text.

In my eyes, this appears like a very basic concept.

Unfortunately, I see this problem repeated over-and-over once more when we examine sites.

Finding inadequate internal links isn’t really easy …

You have to go page-by-page to determine them and repair them.

This is one of the most time taking in on-site SEO modifications you will experience.

To avoid this happening, just ensure you always use good practices.

The majority of your internal link anchor text need to make use of specific or partial match anchor text.
Step 5: Page Level Analysis

Page Level Analysis

Objective: to guarantee that each keyword-targeted landing page is enhanced successfully.

Every audit has to examine the quality of material and the optimization of each page.

Strong material without reliable optimization won’t carry out. Weak content with strong optimization also will not carry out.

You require both strong content and reliable optimization to drive online search engine traffic.

The first thing I instantly do is take the target page and run it through Copyscape.

Copyscape Check

I do not run the target page through Copyscape due to the fact that I believe my customer is liar.

It’s due to the fact that there are some residues on the Internet that will steal material.

All you have to do is submit a DMCA report to Google and they will remove the material from the index.

After we run each target page through Copyscape, we then analyze the basics.

Is the keyword in the title?

Your target keyword for the page needs to be in the title. And, the keyword only has to appear when.

That’s all!

Is the keyword in the META description?

Ensure the target keyword is in the META description. Do not pack it in there more than once.

Is the target keyword within the very first few sentences?

Your main keyword needs to appear once at the beginning of the content. This is to reinforce the relevancy of the page.

Is the URL SEO-optimized and clean?

The landing page ought to include the target keyword in the URL and the URL should be short and clean.

Does the ALT tag on the first image of the page consist of the target keyword?

All your ALT tags need to be filled out, however your main keyword for the page ought to appear in the very first image ALT tag.

Does the last sentence of the material include the target keyword?

The last sentence or conclusion is your opportunity to solidify the significance of the page. Make sure you include your keyword.

Exist internal links? If so, are they placed the right way?

As I mentioned in the past, if you have internal links, ensure they are using specific match anchor text.

This is all you have to examine for page-level optimization. Now let me reveal you how you need to analyze your material.
Step 6: Content Analysis

Content Analysis

Goal: to figure out whether the current material technique is working. And, exactly what needs to be improved to get more out of the content.

Your content analysis must check out both your keyword-targeted landing pages and any blog content that’s been released.

Analyzing material is the most time-consuming part of an SEO audit.

That’s because it is the most fundamental part of the whole audit.

You can get all the other parts of an SEO project right, however if your material is slacking, your results will not last.

You Required an Outdoors Perspective

It is vital that you generate a 3rd party to analyze your content technique.

Why?

Since you need an outdoors perspective. It’s difficult to self-examine and review your very own content because you will be biased.

You need an outside party to tell you the truth.

Most businesses do not have reliable material methods.

In fact, a lot of don’t have a “technique” at all.

Here are the questions you need to ask during your material analysis:

Is Your Material Distinct and Initial?

This ought to be a no-brainer, but the material on your website has to be distinct and initial.

That indicates using your innovative mind to come with outstanding concepts!

No thrown up garbage. Taking the additional effort to develop something original deserves it.

Is Your Material Useful and Informative?

In addition to your content being original, you likewise have to ensure it’s useful and informative.

That implies, it should notify, instruct, or resolve an issue that your ideal customer has.

You have to constantly consider your perfect consumer when developing content.

The content on your website isn’t really there to impress your co-workers.

Your material exists to serve and assist your prospective clients.

Is Your Material Better Than Your Competitors?

There is no point in developing content unless you believe it will be better than exactly what’s currently ranking in the online search engine.

Each and every single piece of content should have the intention to beat your rivals.

Otherwise, you are wasting your time.

Is Your Material Engaging?

Your users have to feel like you are speaking straight to them. “You” and “your” have to become your favorite words.

Is Your Info Accurate?

Do not make up facts or stats or falsify info.

Is Your Material Long Enough?

Longer content performs better in Google and this has been shown here.

You can likewise do your own research and see this shown in the SERPS.

Exist Grammar and/or Spelling Errors?

I’ve stated this sometimes however dnt rite lik dis. Utilize the Hemingway Editor if your writing is less than stellar.

Exist Broken Links?

Google hates when there are busted links in your material since it hurts user experience. Ensure you examine your pages to make sure your links are working properly. Use this free busted link checker to find damaged links on your site.

Do You Have Extreme Advertisements?

Excessive usage of advertisements can eliminate from your content, are sidetracking, and will make users hate your site.

When users dislike your website, Google will dislike it too.

If you utilize ads, do not let them overwhelm your content or Panda will be paying your website a check out.

Are You Moderating Your Blog site Comments?

Spammers like to inject nasty links in blog site comments.

That’s why you have to make certain yours are properly moderated.

You do not want to be guilty by association, so ensure you keep your comment area clean.

These questions are the initial step to identifying whether your content strategy is working or not.

The supreme indication of your material’s performance will originate from genuine user experience data.
Task 7: User Experience Analysis

User Experience Analysis

Goal: to see how well users are communicating with your content and site as a whole.

It is impossible to understand exactly what every user considers your site.

Thankfully, you can get a general photo of user experience based upon the information inside Google Analytics.

There are few data points you want to examine in your user experience analysis:

Bounce Rate

You are most likely questioning: “exactly what is an excellent bounce rate?”.

Regrettably, there isn’t a clear response.

Bounce rate is all relative and depends on exactly what type of website it is.

For instance, a “funny cat photos” website will likely have a high bounce rate.

That’s due to the fact that individuals go to the page, get their laughs in, and leave.

Websites like mine will have lower bounce rates since people will want to check out and learn more.

With that all stated, a bounce rate in between 60 %– 80 % is solid.

80 %– 90 % is enough to necessitate looking into the problem further.

If it is above 90 %, then it needs to hit the top of the priority list.

Typical Time Spent on Site.

The longer users remain on your site, the more chances you get to convert them.

Like bounce rate, average time invested in site is relative.

If the typical time spent on website is less 1 minute, then it’s certainly something you will want to look into.

As a general rule of thumb, users will invest more time on your website if there is a great deal of material to take in.

For instance, my readers spend an average of 2:52 minutes on Gotch SEO.

If this was less than 1 minute, I would have to start questioning my content method and my site in general.

There is something that will rapidly push back users:.

A lack of quality content.

Low average time invested in site typically pesters local businesses for this precise factor.

That’s due to the fact that any individual trying to find a “plumber in St. Louis” is most likely cost shopping.

They will jump from business-to-business looking for the best deal.

The very best method to combat this issue on the regional level is to produce more valuable material.

You should focus on informing your potential local customers.

Education and transparency cause trust.

Trust results in sells.

Concentrate on providing more value than your competitors.

This will improve bounce rates and force users to stay on your website for longer.

Think about by doing this: if someone wished to get to you, could they find out more in 30 seconds or in 3 minutes?

Yes, I am captain obvious, however it’s essential.

The longer users stay on your website and digest your content, the more they will feel like they “understand you”.

Objective Completions.

Tracking goal competitors is the most essential metric in Google Analytics.

The only reason your business ought to even have a website is to get conversions/goal conclusions.

It doesn’t matter if your bounce rate is low or people are remaining your website for hours … If the visitors aren’t converting into leads, sales or e-mail subscribers then you are losing your time.

The goal of improving the other metrics is to make you more cash!

Remember, SEO is just a method to an end. SEO by itself doesn’t make money.

YOU make money by offering.

You can have the best SEO in the world, however if you cannot sell, it won’t matter.

The word “offer” will have a various meaning for everybody.

However there is something that every online company shares:.

You have to offer through copywriting or through video. If you avoid this task, then no one will purchase your items or no one will end up being a lead.

With that stated, whenever objective conclusions are abysmal we instantly take a look at the customer’s on-site sales method.

Is it easy for leads to contact you?
Exists enough details about your service?
Are you showing enough social evidence?

Exit Pages

Identifying exactly what pages users leave from the most is the initial step to taking care of the concern. It should be obvious, but you need to assess the most regularly left page.

You need to ask the simple concern “why are they leaving this certain page more than others?”.

Believe it or not, it’s not always a bad thing to have a high exit rate on a page.

Sometimes the content does its task for the reader and requires them to go out and act.

Do not constantly think that users are leaving a particular page since they dislike it.

If the material fixes the user’s problem well and they leave the page, you have actually done your task.

There is one very important thing to think about when analyzing Exit Rate inside of Google Analytics.

Do not take a look at the overall number of “Exits”.

The total number of exits will constantly be higher on pages that get more traffic.

The number you wish to take a look at is the “% Exit”.

Sort your data from the greatest percentage to the lowest.

A “high” exit portion would be anything over 80 %. A “regular” exit portion is around 50-65 %.

The # 1 problem that will force people to leave a page at a high frequency is that your content did not resolve their issue or answer the concerns they had.

There are other aspects that might compel individuals to leave a page like design, but content is often the culprit.

Go the page with the greatest exit rate and ask:.

Does this page fix a problem or answer a question to the max level?
Are there still some questions left unanswered?
How is the readability of the material?
Exist a lot of huge blocks of text?
Insufficient images?
Busted images?
Does the page load slowly?
Exist distracting aspects such as advertisements that would send a user off your website?
Are you setting external connect to “open in a new window” (if not, you should)?

These questions need to be ample to obtain to the bottom of the issue. Go through this process for every single page with a high exit rate.

Return Visitors.

The amount of visitors who return back to your website is a strong positive user signal.

It suggests that your website or material deserves seeing once more.

Return visitors are also good from a conversion perspective because it offers you more opportunities to convert them into a lead or e-mail customer.

If you do not have a high percentage of Return Visitors then this might be an indication that your content is lacking. Or, your site has one or a lot of the technical or content concerns that I explained above that are repelling your users.

Branded Searches.

Like Return Visitors, top quality searches are a strong indictor that individuals want your website and brand.

If you are producing great material and your website is developed with users in mind, then individuals will wish to return. That indicates they will go into Google and look for your brand.

To see how well you are currently doing, you will have to utilize Google Search Console.

Go to “Browse Traffic” and click on “Browse Analytics”. Filter by “Clicks” so that the search query with the most clicks is on top.

Branded.

Your brand name should be one of the top inquiries.

Social Signals.

Social signals by themselves are not effective.

BUT, if you integrate them with all the other positive user metrics, then your site will get a whirlwind of favorable ranking signals.

Getting REAL social signals must be a priority for your company. The only way to obtain them is through developing excellent material and pleasing your users. You can likewise consider using social locker plugins if you are really struggling.

Now it’s time to take a look at your link profile.

Here we go:.
Step 8: Connect Analysis.

Connect Analysis.

Goal: to identify staminas and weaknesses in your link profile.

As you understand, backlinks can make or break an SEO project. This is why a big part of our audit is spent evaluating the customer’s link profile. We make use of Ahrefs, Majestic, Open Website Explorer, and Google Browse Console to examine the links.

Now you are most likely questioning: exactly what are we looking for?

We are looking at a few various factors:.
Link Significance.

Link relevance is king when it comes to link structure.

That’s almost always where I start a link audit.

Are the backlinks hitting their site appropriate?

100 % of your backlinks don’t have to be relevant, however the bulk needs to be.

To quickly determine the significance of a client’s link profile, we export their links from Ahrefs and use the bulk look at Majestic.

When you export from Ahrefs, make certain you export the referring domains like so:.

Ahrefs Export-min.

Now you are going to take those referring domains and make use of Majestic’s bulk check to see Topical Trust Flow Subjects.

Although the Topical Trust Flow Subject metric isn’t really ideal, it is the only scalable relevance metric there is.

By hand checking the significance of each linking site would be a horrible wild-goose chase.

The goal of this workout is to obtain a general significance image of the DOMAINS that are connecting to the customer’s website.

Go to “Tools”, “Link Map Tools”, and “Bulk Backlinks”.

Majestic Bulk Backlinks Analysis.

Place the referring domains into the bulk checker and export the results. Sort your CSV file based on Topical Trust Circulation Subjects.

Identify exactly what link sources are entirely off the wall.

If you are an attorney and you have a backlink from a domain with a Topical Trust Flow Topics of “Pets”, then you need to be concerned.

Mark all backlinks that are irrelevant. This does not mean you are going to get them gotten rid of.

It’s simply a way for you to know that they exist. That way, you might return to them if your site was ever hit with a penalty.
Connect Authority.

After link significance, link authority comes in a close second.

In fact, pure authority can often mask an absence of link relevance.

I like relevancy before authority due to the fact that I believe it keeps your site much safer from algorithm updates.

However to each their own!

There are a number of methods to find how “reliable” your backlinks are.

You can run a bulk examine both Majestic and Ahrefs.

Ahrefs “Domain Rating” (DR) is an accurate gauge of site authority.

It is far more accurate than PA and DA due to the fact that it updates on a frequent basis.

The information from Open Website Explorer updates at a snails rate and is inaccurate the majority of the time.

Don’t think me?

Open Site Explorer gives GotchSEO.com a DA of 25 and claims the site just has 30 linking root domains …

Ahrefs is showing 562 connecting root domains and it’s only showing about 80 % of the backlinks GotchSEO.com in fact has.

With that said, you can utilize Open Website Explorer to crosscheck, however do not count on it’s metrics alone.

Another metric that is nearly impossible to “game” is the SEM Rush traffic rating.

That’s since it based on genuine organic online search engine rankings.

SEM Rush uses its own algorithm to determine how much your organic traffic is “worth”.

It’s not perfect, however it’s a metric I rely on a daily basis to determine the quality of link opportunities.

Make use of all of the metrics readily available at your non reusable to assess the quality of your present backlinks or opportunities.
Link Diversity.

Diversifying your backlinks makes your profile more “natural”.

Various “types” of backlinks consist of.

contextual links.
site-wide footer/sidebar links.
directory links.
resource page links.
niche profile links.
forums links.
relevant blog remark links.

In addition to the “type” of backlink, you also want to have diversity with DoFollow and NoFollow links.

At this part of the analysis, simply ask the easy question:.

“Is my link profile diversified enough?”.
Connect Targeting.

Another crucial link factor you have to analyze is the ratio of homepage links compared with deep links.

If you are using a content-focused SEO method, then the majority of your backlinks must be going to deep pages.

Regardless of what approach you are utilizing, it is always a good practice to disperse backlinks across your whole site.

This will develop the total authority of the site and improve your possibilities of seeing SEO results.
Anchor Text Diversity.

Anchor text abuse is widespread and that’s why we always examine the ratios.

The first ratio we appreciate the most is the client’s portion of precise match anchor text.

After that, we want to see their percentage of top quality anchor text.

If the EMA surpass top quality anchors, then there has to be a modification of method.

As you might know, the bulk of your anchor text profile should be branded anchors.

EMA’s ought to be used far and couple of between since it is a strong spam signal to Google.

If the customer is struggling with over-optimized anchor text, there are a couple of solutions:.

Construct new backlinks with branded anchor text to balance out the over-optimization.
Think about getting a few of the EMA altered to branded anchor text.

Overall Referring Domains.

The more special referring domains a website has linking to it, the better.

The analysis we do here is absolutely nothing more than a comparison versus their leading ranking competitors.

For instance, how many referring domains do they have linking to them as compared to their rivals?

The solution is basic here:.

Get more pertinent, high quality backlinks from special domains.
Historic Link Velocity.

Has their link speed stayed steady throughout the life of their website? Or has it been erratic?

Enormous dips in link loss are suspect.

Backlinks from genuine websites hardly ever fall off.

Backlinks from synthetic websites fall off when the link suppliers stops spending for their hosting or do not renew a domain.
Connect Velocity-min.
Link Development for NeilPatel.com.

Your goal should be to accomplish steady link growth overtime like this:.

Now that you understand the best ways to analyze your link profile, let me reveal you ways to analyze your citations.
Step 9: Citation Analysis.

Citation Analysis.

Objective: to see whether or not the client has consistent NAP-W information across all listings. And, to determine business directories that the client is not noted on.

The citation analysis is used for local customers.

Nevertheless, it can be used for any business who is wanting to preserve consistency throughout all online homes.

I suggest that every business performs a citation audit even if you aren’t engaging in local SEO.

Fortunately is that citation cleanup is one-and-done activity.

Let me show you exactly what we search for in a citation analysis:.

NAP-W Consistency.

Having constant NAP-W (name, address, phone, site) consistency is among the most important ranking consider Google Local.

There are many tools for auditing your citations such as:.

Moz Local.
Yext.
Brilliant Local.

Untapped Directory sites.

There are numerous business directory sites to submit your site which’s why it’s optimal to make use of a tool. Once again, we utilize Bright Resident’s Citation Tracker, White Spark, Moz Resident and Yext to find these untapped citations.
Download Free SEO Audit Checklist.

I create an SEO audit list for you that highlights the most fundamental parts of this guide.

Here’s what you have to do to receive it:.

Click on this link now.
Enter your email.
Click “Download Now”.
Validate your email address.
Enjoy your free checklist!

Conclusion.

Wow, that was extremely long, however I truly didn’t want to leave anything out! You are now geared up to perform an extensive SEO audit whenever you want.

Please leave your ideas and concerns about this post in the remark area. I.

look forward to learning through you in a second and thanks for reading.

 

What exactly are the best ranking factors in today’s Google game? And how do they affect you? Well, when you perform a search with a keyword, a series of results turn up. Now, these outcomes are ranked in order of their quality and relevance. Many online search engine users won’t even look beyond the first couple of results so it’s important to remain at the top of the SERPs. Google and other internet search engine typically aim to give their users the very best match for their searches so the first couple of links are of really high quality.

Google determines this quality by evaluating a number of aspects of your site. Few know about the complete list of elements, but there are over 200 of them. Now, it’s not possible to keep an eye on the whole list of these factors, however you can watch on a couple of essential ones. Here’s a brief description of them.

Backlinks Reign Supreme

Backlinks are among the most important ranking elements. That’s primarily due to the fact that they reinforce your authority. After all, if a legitimate and high authority website cites your website and puts a link to your content on their page, they think that the page is of high authority as well. That enhances your online track record and respectability, which in turn is seen by the Google bots and crawlers. This is among the very best methods to get a high rank on the SERPs. Of course, it goes without stating that your general link authority would help you rank high on the SERPs.

Content Significance

It’s inadequate for you to simply compose good material; you likewise need to make them pertinent. This suggests that if the material isn’t linked to a keyword or search term, it would not rank high up on the SERPs. For example, if you’re looking for a way to set up your wi-fi router, a website that explains the process in an arranged and clear way, it would rank higher. Nevertheless, the pages that just utilize the keywords and don’t explain the procedure effectively won’t rank high.

Creating content is really a game changer for SEO today. Many people are learning to create 1 years worth of content in 12 weeks using a course like the 12 Week Mastery System. This is a recommended training program is you are wanting to get long term results in a short amount of  time.

Content Length

There’s a lot being stated about the short attention spans of people when they’re online. Not all of it holds true. Yes, individuals do have short attention spans when they’re reading things online. Nevertheless, when people look for information, they desire the most thorough and helpful material. If the content has to do with 200 words long, it won’t manage to communicate much details.

According to research study done by numerous SEO professionals, the average word count of material on the leading outcomes has to do with 1,800 words. Comprehensive short articles with 2,000 to 3,000 words gather the most attention. If a short article needs to contain that much content, it needs to be well-researched. This ensures that the quality of the material is good.

Images in Material

People choose visual material and creators are acknowledging this. Most good quality content online has infographics, videos, and even pictures. Even a single photo suffices to increase the rankings considerably. Other aspects consist of website packing speed, HTTPS, low bounce rate, etc. If you think about these in your website, you’ll see a favorable modification in your search engine rankings.

 

Take a look at this Infographic on SEO Ranking Factors in 2016

Important-Ranking-Factors-Google-2016

Looking for the best food trucks in Huntsville and around the TN Valley? Well so were we, so we decided to start this database of all of the regular food trucks that operate in the greater Huntsville area. This list is added to and updated regularly so be sure to check back from time to time.  If any are missing or if you want to add your food truck please use our contact form to add your Food Truck.

  • BACK ALLEY TRAVELING BISTRO

    • 210 Oakwood Avenue
    • Huntsville, AL 35811
    • (256) 468-6925
  • BRAIN FREEZE MOBILE ICE CREAM

    • Varies
    • Huntsville, AL 00000
    • (256) 665-2461
  • CAFE ON WHEELS NEON LILLY

    • Varies
    • Huntsville, AL 35801
    • (256) 469-8579
  • CHEF WILL THE PALATE

    • 2211 Seminole Drive
    • Huntsville, AL 35801
    • (256) 617-6052
  • CRAVE HEAT

    • varies
    • Huntsville, AL 35805
    • (256) 829-8043
  • DALE’S STUFT GOURMET STUFFED POTATOES

    • varies
    • Huntsville, AL 35801
    • (256) 572-7600

     

    • DALLAS MILL DELI

      • 500 Pratt Avenue
      • Huntsville, AL 35801
      • 256-489-3354
    • EARTH AND STONE WOOD FIRED PIZZA (FOOD TRUCK)

      • varies
      • (256) 489-9539
    • FIRE & SPICE TEX-MEX (FOOD TRUCK)

      • Visit website for schedule
    • FROSTY HALLS ICE CREAM

      • varies
      • Huntsville, AL 35801
      • (256) 656-6968
    • ANGEL’S ISLAND COFFEE (FOOD TRUCK)

      • varies
      • Huntsville, AL 35802
      • (256) 319-3424
    • BADD NEWZ BBQ

      • 1217 Grace Street
      • Huntsville, AL 35801
      • (256) 653-6893

Previously this month, Niantic Inc. (previously an internal start-up at Google) released Pokémon Go– a free-to-play, location-based increased reality mobile game– sparking a cultural phenomenon on a worldwide scale. Considering that its release, the app has actually been smashing records and logging unmatched usage metrics. To call simply a few:

Fastest rise to the top of the iOS App Store and Google Play store
21 million active users
More day-to-day users than Twitter, more user engagement than Facebook, retention rates and profits that are twice the market average

With all this interest, it’s no surprise that companies are integrating Pokémon Go into their marketing efforts. To comprehend the marketing potential behind the app, it assists if you know the essentials of how Pokémon Go works.

Pokémon Go uses Google Maps API and the gadget’s GPS to track the player’s movement relative to the real life. To play, users explore their neighborhoods and cities trying to find three things:

 

  • PokéStops– visiting these replenishes a gamer’s in-game items. Their real life corollary are public art pieces, parks, and comparable gathering areas.
  • Pokémon Gyms– players battle Pokémon here for prizes and magnificence! Much like PokéStops, gyms in the real world are represented by monoliths, museums, and other locations of cultural significance.
  • Pokémon– gamers got ta catch ’em all, and they can appear anywhere while players explore.

In regards to marketing, McDonald’s is perhaps the most prominent example as the game’s very first business sponsor. As part of the partnership, about 2,500 McDonald’s locations in Japan will become PokéStops and around 400 places will end up being Pokémon fitness centers for a minimal time– potentially drawing in the foot traffic of thousands of players (all working up their appetites searching for Pokémon).

Other businesses are doing the same– particularly ones at or near the PokéStops where gamers tend to gather. Anecdotally, I’ve seen several of the following examples:

 

  • Free gifts or discount rates when gamers reveal the app at checkout
  • Shop signage and social networks posts marketing distance to PokéStops, gyms, and uncommon Pokémon found on the properties
  • Companies establishing “Lure Modules” (a $.99 in-app purchase that triggers Pokémon to appear more frequently near a PokéStop for 30 minutes) on a schedule to draw in gamers after peak hours
  • Ecommerce and email marketing for products that gamers would be particularly thinking about, such as external batteries, fitness gear, travel gear, and even data strategies

Pokémon Go marketing trends are ending up being so extensive, Yelp produced a new search filter to show users businesses that have PokéStops nearby. At the same time, Placed, an area analytics company, used opt-in user data to assemble a list of companies that are the most likely to succeed from teaming up with Pokémon Go, ala McDonald’s. Chances are, Pokémon Go attract a minimum of some part for your target audience. Considering that the app’s popularity continues to grow, it’s worth thinking about how you can leverage it to engage with your customers

randfishkin interview

Chase Reiner: All right, so we’re on air right now Rand.

Rand Fishkin: Awesome.

Chase Reiner: Yeah. The first question I have for you … I actually added a couple more questions, and if you don’t feel comfortable answering them, you don’t have to.

Rand Fishkin: Oh, no problem. I’ll answer anything and everything.

Chase Reiner: Okay, well, I won’t hold you to it if that’s not the case. My first question is how did you start out doing SEO because that’s something I don’t know about you.

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, sure. I started actually in web design and development back in the late 90s. I was doing that a little bit through high school and then into college. I dropped out of college in 2001 to start working with my mom, Jillian, who had a small business marketing consultancy. She was sort of an independent, solo entrepreneur and worked with a bunch of businesses in the Seattle area to make logos and letterheads, business cards, all that kind of stuff. Her clients started needing websites as well, and that’s what I was building.

A couple years into that, some of them needed SEO as well. We initially outsourced that, we subcontracted it to a few folks here in Seattle, and then we ended up not being able to afford the subcontracting anymore, so I had to do it myself. That’s when I began trolling the SEO forums at the time. Contributing, participating, you know, you can go back to like 2003, 2004, and just find every single SEO forum is filled with “randfish” asking weird questions. Then I started up SEO Moz the blog as a place to share my own ideas and what I was learning, and be able to point to bigger pieces of content.

Chase Reiner: In all those forums, were there links going back to all your sites too?

Rand Fishkin: I wish. I think I might have actually tried that a few times. Try like comment … Comment spamming, even back then, I realized I really didn’t like it. It wasn’t for me, and I was not good at it.

Chase Reiner: Right. Right on. Okay, so then there goes the question of Moz, how did that get started? Why did you decide to start Moz and how did you grow it?

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, I mean initially it was just the blog, and then as the blog became more prominent, that overtook the rest of our business as the way we were earning clients. We shut down the old consulting business, and started operating solely under Moz, called “SEO Moz” at the time, when it was SEOMoz.org. Then in 2007, we had launched … Well we had built a few tools, just for ourselves to use for our clients, and we decided we wanted to make those public. I’m a big transparency guy. I hate having stuff that’s like, “Oh I have a secret sauce that you don’t know about.” We wanted to make all these tools public, but we couldn’t handle the volume of free users, so we figured, “Hey, we’ll just put up a little PayPal pay wall. You’ll have to subscribe, you pay us like $29, maybe it was $39 a month.”

It turns out we just announced that once on the blog, didn’t really talk about it a whole lot. I was actually going through the old blog posts yesterday, over the weekend because I’m writing a book now about this experience, and we didn’t promote it much at all. It turned out hundreds of people were just signing up for these tools, and that ended up becoming almost half our revenue stream by the middle of the year. At that point we said, “Wait a minute, we think we’re onto something here. Like let’s get serious about this software business,” and I think that’s really when Moz started to transition into a software as a service type company.

 

Chase Reiner: All right, next question. This is a question that I’ve been wondering for a while, and I think I’ve been asking you a lot of questions on your Whiteboard Friday‘s, or not asking you in particular but discussing with other people. One of the big things for me is staying on top of your SEO game, and I guess my first question, it’s going to be a three part question, but my first question is how do you stay on top of your game? Then the other two parts would be like how much time do you spend learning and how much time do you spend implementing to continue the learning?

Rand Fishkin: For me, I’m in a very lucky position. I think early on I had to spend a tremendous amount of time learning SEO and getting up to speed, but then once you sort of achieve prominence in the SEO blogging world, the nice thing is that I probably have ten emails every day that are not just asking me questions but furthering my knowledge. They’re sharing a, “Hey, I discovered this.” “Hey Rand, we saw this weird thing with this website.” I just got an email … Actually it was a Google+ notification last week from a research team in Germany that had done a bunch of amazing research into pagination styles and format. Stuff that I’ve never dug into, internal linking pagination and how that affects indexation on large, very large, enterprise size sites. They had done this phenomenal piece. When I found it I actually asked if I could share it around, because I thought it was so good.

It’s stuff like that, right? I sort of get kept up to speed automatically just by reading my feeds and my email and helping folks out. I probably am helping five to ten folks every day through Moz Q&A or through my personal email, and I think teaching is a phenomenal way to learn. If you’re trying to help someone else accomplish something, “I’m helping a startup here in Seattle or a non-profit or I’m helping a friend of mine.” Sometimes Geraldine, my wife lets me, I even help her with her travel blog. All of those things are points where I’m teaching, I’m helping with the implementation, but I’m also learning at the same time.

Chase Reiner: Okay.

Rand Fishkin: As far as time goes, boy. [crosstalk 00:06:54] maybe a good quarter of my day, on average, is spent teaching, learning, implementing, reading, amplifying, right, like some combination of those things. It’s usually 30-45 minutes in the morning before I walk to work, and sometimes another five or ten meetings here in between meetings at work, and then most of it is really like between 10 PM and 2 AM, like when I have that quiet down time.

Chase Reiner: Like you were saying earlier, you’re kind of in the ideal position. What would you maybe recommend to somebody who’s working a 40 hour work week, who’s the average SEO. How much time should they be spending or teaching?

Rand Fishkin: One of the things that I think is a terrific idea is to find something else that you’re passionate about outside of the pure SEO world, and start your own website on it. You don’t need it to make money, although you can if you want. You’re just trying to learn and implement and test things out and have some fun and play around. I think most of the best SEOs that we all know out there are folks who do a lot of testing, who run their own website, sometimes several of them. I remember Cyrus Shepard right, who was the head of SEO at Moz for a long time, he had a bunch of sites on the side. In fact, he decided to leave Moz so that he and his wife could both work full time on that portfolio of websites that he kind of built up on the side, and I think that’s awesome. More power to him. I miss him dearly, I hope he maybe comes back someday but not because his sites failed.

Chase Reiner: Right on. There was something that you mentioned in a blab the other day with Robert [O’haver 00:08:44], I actually asked you a question and it was about what would you recommend to somebody who’s really passionate about SEO. I don’t know if you remember it, you probably get tons of questions all the time. You said, “To become really specialized in a certain part of SEO.” What would you consider yourself specialized in? Like a lot of things or what do you target?

Rand Fishkin: I think for me my particular specialization is probably on the software and data side of SEO, and that’s just because of my experience at Moz and how much my personal success and Moz’s success depends on us being really good at building software and data and tools. I think that’s probably an area of specialization that not a ton of folks in our field have. There’s a good handful: John Henshaw from Raven obviously, Dixon Jones from Majestic, and his partner Alex, and Nick Crew from SEM Rush. There’s probably two dozen scaled up software companies in SEO, so it’s a fairly specialized skill. Yeah, that’s something I really enjoy too. I love sitting down with the big data team and saying, “How do we make our crawl more representative of Google’s crawl,” and, “How do we improve the machine learning system that works on the page authority algorithm so that page authority becomes more representative and better correlated with Google’s metrics or Google’s rankings?”

That kind of stuff I get super excited about. I’m not super technical. I can’t actually sit down in Java or C++ and start [inaudible 00:10:22] on Mozscape and helping out that way, but on the product side that’s one of my big passions.

Chase Reiner: Whiteboard Friday’s. How do you come up with them all the time? I mean, one of the struggles for me, not just for the podcast but also for the blogging, I was doing a lot of blogging previous to getting hired to where I’m at right now, and one of the challenges for me was coming up with new ideas all the time. There’s always so many people in the SEO world talking about the same thing, and it seems like you’re always coming out with new things that it’s like, “Oh, that’s not something I usually hear about.”

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, for me it is … I obviously pay attention, like you do, to the mainstream news. Whatever I’m seeing covered on search engine land and search engine round table and all that kind of stuff. I also have this, I don’t know what it is, like a sixth sense over the years. If I find something that pops up that looks really interesting. For example, that study that I mentioned on pagination and internal links on large sites, I’ll go, “Wait, that’s new and unique, and that’s interesting.” I would say most of the whiteboard Friday ideas I get are from eureka types of moments like that where I stumble across something, it seems really fascinating and interesting to me, I haven’t seen it covered a ton, and so I’ll turn that into just a short email that I send to the guys who film whiteboard Friday, that’s Elijah and Michael.

Then, you know, we get together in the room and we look at the emails that I might have sent them in the last couple weeks, and we go, “All right, let’s do that one, let’s do that one.” Then I write them up on the board and we film them.

Chase Reiner: Nice. Do you feel like your drawing has improved over the …

Rand Fishkin: Yes, yes I do. I think I started out with some pretty pathetic and amateur drawing skills, and I’m now up to the level of maybe intermediate. I’m definitely not a quality artist. I’ve seen some folks come in who can whiteboard things up, and it just looks gorgeous, stunning. In fact, Geraldine can do that, my wife can do that. She’s like this amazing artist, but I cannot. I have to stick to my little stick figures looking at their little web pages, but it works. It works.

Chase Reiner: We got an interesting question from one of my coworkers for you. They wanted to know what SEO tools do you wish existed, and why don’t they exist yet? You can think about this.

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, I have thought about this a lot. I think one of the ones that I’m most passionate about, that I wish existed, I wish you could see the webs click data, anonymized of course, but the way that you can see link data. For example, if I go to [inaudible 00:13:26] or Majestic or open site explorer for Moz, I can see here’s a bunch of links that point to this page, here’s a bunch of links that point to this page, and I can filter and sort those. How amazing would it be to do the same thing with user and click data? I want to know how many people searched this term yesterday, or searched in the last 30 days. Then I want to know what percentage of them clicked on position one, two, three, four, five, and how that differs from the average position click.

Then I’d like to see, once they made it to this website, how far down did they go? What was the average time on site? That sort of competitive data for web analytics. That would be mind-blowingly awesome. I think there are a few companies out there that have and sell click stream type of data. Moz has been buying some click stream data for our keyword research tool, so that we can have more accurate volume scores and more accurate opportunity scores and that kind of stuff, but it’s … That is a massive undertaking. You need this incredible score of data, then you need to be able to slice and dice it a million ways, but how awesome would it be to say, “Huh, I wonder if this is a good keyword,” and then being able to see here’s how many people search for it, from which regions, and here’s which sites they clicked on and here’s whether they made it to conversion. That would be heaven.

Chase Reiner: It seems like Jumpshot’s trying to get a little bit of a hang on that, but it’s still a little far off.

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, Jumpshot and Similarweb, I think are the two that have a shot at building something like that for right now, and we’ll see. I mean, I think that click level data is just essential to the competitive environment that we’re in, and I’d love to see those, one of those or both of those folks take off and compete with each other and get better and better. That’d be cool.

Chase Reiner: Yeah, it would.

Future of Moz. Speaking of tools, anything in the works that you want to talk about?

Rand Fishkin: You must have read my mind. Yeah, so next week … Is it next week? It’s either next week or the week after, we are launching keyword explorer, which I’ve tweeted about a few times. I’ve put up a little gallery of some screenshots on my public Facebook page yesterday, and it is … I think it’s going to be good when it launches, and I think within a few months of launch, thanks to lots of feedback and input, it’s going to be great. The exciting thing is I’ve been working with this small team of engineers and designers for the last almost exactly 12 months on this project, and it’s awesome. They’ve got sort of the next six months just sitting there, waiting for people to say, “I also want this. I also want that. I wish you would do this,” and the data back end of it is pretty incredible.

You know Russ Jones, who was formerly at Virante, and he has been instrumental, he and [Doctor Pete 00:16:26] both, have been instrumental in creating these high quality metrics that you just can’t get anywhere else. I mentioned the click stream data, which means that you can get a true estimate of click through rate opportunity on any given search result, depending on the features that Google’s put in there. You can get much more accurate volume scores. They’re bigger ranges, but 95% of the time, the volume, the true volume falls within those, as opposed to the weird numbers that Adwords spits back that are just bizarre sometimes.

I’m pretty psyched about that. I think it’s going to be an interesting one for sure. I haven’t launched a product where I got to work with the product team since probably the very early years of my CEO tenure, so it’s kind of fun to get back in the weeds and get to do that kind of work again.

Chase Reiner: Cool. All right Rand, so I think my last question is do you have any mentors and where do you learn most your stuff from? Other than your emails.

Rand Fishkin: Well I will say … So one of my greatest mentors in the last years have been my investors. Initially, we were totally amateur hour when we started SEO Moz and started doing software stuff. When Michelle Goldberg from [inaudible 00:17:46] came in, she was just phenomenal. She has this cool, calm, very sophisticated but very empathetic way of sharing information with us, telling us kind of, “Okay, here’s how we want to structure this, and here’s how we can maximize this. Here’s people you should talk to to learn more about churn and about lifetime value and about all the [sass 00:18:12] metrics, and here’s people you can talk to to learn more about credit card processing.” Just a lot of sophistication and advancement, and that happened again with Brad Feld from [inaudible 00:18:23] who’s been phenomenal.

Another big mentor of mine is Darmish Shah from Hub Spot. In 2007, when we were thinking about raising money, he reached out via email. We had a couple long phone calls, and then he’s been … I don’t know, it just feels like a brother to me ever since. He just sort of sends along information and it’s like, “Oh yeah, you should do this, you should try that. This would be good for you.” I don’t know what I did to deserve such awesome people in my life, but it’s been pretty amazing.

Chase Reiner: It’s probably because you attract like personalities, right?

Rand Fishkin: Well, I hope so. I mean I hope I’ve helped someone as much as Darmish has helped me.

Chase Reiner: You’ve definitely helped me a lot.

Rand Fishkin: I’m thrilled to hear it. That’s great.

Chase Reiner: Well, that’s pretty much all I’ve got Rand.

Rand Fishkin: Awesome. Thank you for having me man, that was really fun.

Chase Reiner: I really appreciate you coming on here man.

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, you bet. All right, take care of yourselves.

Chase Reiner: All right, you too man.

If Instagram’s algorithm is a point of concern for you, and you are looking to understand how you can increase your visibility on the network, it is a very good idea to get down to the basics and really understand some solid tactics to build your brand presence and announce yourself. Here are some tactics which work very well in accordance with the algorithm and fetch good results every time.

Create and Use Campaign-Specific Links on Instagram

While Instagram is a very diverse marketing platform, it may not be the best choice for selling products, because an overly promotional language does not gel too well with the algorithm. Hence, cross-platform promotion makes a lot of sense as it gets the reach of an Instagram post, and also successfully takes people off the platform and onto your website where you have full control of the content and the presentation. You can use in-post CTAs and also put your link on your bio. The links can be tracked with UTM codes and serve the purpose of driving your followers to your website or blog which has been optimized for sales. You can also use plug-ins like Have2Have.it and Like2b.uy. For optimum content engagement, you could include a teaser; a snippet of the article, that is enough to get them interested and then add a CTA to let them read the rest of the article on your blog.

Leverage Storytelling and User-Generated Content.

The new update has brought something to the limelight which has been around for ages- user-generated stories. If you can engage your social media followers with posts and stories, that automatically makes your posts that much more valuable. If posts written by your followers and customers find their way back to you through hashtags and tags, you are able to build a solid online community and greatly boost your value. The entire collection process can also be automated with services like instamacro. You could include quotes and pictures from your loyal customers to establish a certain pride and solidarity among them, and also increase your popularity. Make sure you ask for permission before using their content or provide a disclaimer at least. Also, always tag the user, or it beats the entire purpose and also infringes their intellectual property.

Go with the Flow

As a brand on Instagram, one of the easiest and perhaps one of the best things to do for you is to follow trending hashtags and post about them if you find something relevant to your business or your cause. It is a great idea to mix things up once in a while and throw some variety into your promotions with personal posts or trending tags. You can incorporate seasons, holidays, films, sports, days of the week and pretty much anything that is trending. This is a great way to attract more traffic. It is, however, important to realize that you shouldn’t pick sides like in political campaigns religious views and so on.

Use Campaign-Specific Hashtags and Video Content

Video has become integral to Instagram’s entire philosophy ever since it was integrated into the service, and hence must also be an integral part of your marketing campaign. You can put up endorsements, new product reviews, workplace videos, pretty much anything that is relevant; you are only limited by your own creativity. Don’t make the videos too long, though, as this automatically drives viewers away. Another important and effective method is to coin exclusive hashtags for your campaign or company and use them on all your posts or all related posts till they become accepted or gain cult status among your fans.

Conclusion

Change is difficult, and the entire cyberspace is always subject to change, be it a new search ranking algorithm by Google, or new algorithm updates on networks like Instagram. It is important that you hire a competent marketing team which is able to stay on top of these changes and ensure that your campaigns are effective and successful at all times.

E-commerce has exploded over the last five years. According to the US Census Bureau, in the fourth quarter of 2015, it accounted for 7.5% of all U.S. retail. Mobile shopping in 2015 accounted for 30% of all e-commerce, an increase of 5% from 2014.

Here are five improvements that have contributed to its unprecedented growth.

Retail Partnering for Fast Delivery

One of the greatest benefits of online shopping is being able to avoid the financial, and emotional, costs of driving. The time-consuming hassles of buying gas, fighting traffic, and looking for a parking space are all eliminated. Your items are delivered right to your door, and increasingly, often the same day you order them.

Expanded delivery services are elevating customer service to a whole new level. Google Express is one of the companies leading the way. By partnering with local retailers in multiple locations, they are able to offer same day or overnight delivery of a wide variety of items. Their partners include Ace Hardware, Walgreen’s and Toys”R” Us.

Plug-Ins

No matter what functions you want for your e-commerce store, a wide variety of plug-ins are available. Cart66 is just one of the many that offer nearly every feature necessary to sell products online from any post or web page.

From inventory management to multiple payment methods, these plug-ins make it possible to get your online store up and running in record time. There is even a free version. The pro version integrates with other popular plug-ins, like Gravity Forms, and also offers support for recurring payments and membership access. This is great news for the increasing number of people starting unique subscription services.

Shopping Apps

Mobile merchants reported a 68.5% increase in visits last year. 44% of those visits were by unique visitors, or potential new customers. Mobile apps and downloads generated almost $41 billion in revenue. Consumers are using their new technological capabilities and their smartphones to compare prices, read reviews, and text their friends about purchases before making them.

During the last holiday shopping season, Consumer Reports reviewed just a few of the increasing number of shopping apps available. Getting the highest quality items at the lowest prices a purchasing apps is the new name of the game with these apps.

Social Checkout

One of the highest-yielding improvements in e-commerce is the addition of the social checkout. Despite all of our technological advances, word of mouth is still the most powerful, effective, and profitable form of advertising.

Giving customers the ability to rate and share their shopping experience on multiple social media platforms with a simple click of a button is word of mouth multiplied exponentially. Profits are reflecting the power of positive experiences shared the moment they happen.

Website Content

E-commerce provides convenience and savings, but it does have one disadvantage. Consumers are not able to use their five senses to experience products before purchasing them. As anyone who has ever measured the difference between a photo of a cheeseburger and an actual cheeseburger can testify, what you see isn’t always what you get.

Through words, good website content enables customers to more accurately imagine textures, scents, sounds, and sensations. In one study, it was revealed that 55% of purchase failures were the result of content that was unclear, incomplete or uninformative. That’s why companies are spending more to improve the content on their e-commerce sites.

There are more, and better, tools available than ever before to help your e-business provide an unprecedented level of customer service. In a sharing economy, the goal is to go beyond customer satisfaction– to customer enthusiasm– shared.

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who has worked in eCommerce for the last five years.  She currently writes for Rakuten Super Logistics and recommends them for all your product fulfillment needs to further your success.

Becoming a leading blog in your industry can have incredible results for your site. Customers and competitors will look to your blog for information and news within the industry. Here you can build a reputation for both yourself and your company.

  1. Study your audience – Find out who you are trying to reach. What do these readers want to see? Learning what your readers want to see makes writing much easier. Specific topics can make creating posts go quicker, plus these targeted articles are more likely to be shared over social networking sites. There are a few ways to find out what people want to see. Locate competitors blogs and find which blog posts are performing the best. Which ones are sites linking to? Which articles are being shared on social media? This will give you an idea on what readers want to see. Another way to gather some of this information is to simply ask. You can offer follow up emails to customers, asking what questions they would like to have answered about your specific industry.
  2. Get the team writing – The largest blogs on the web do not limit themselves to one writer. By having additional writers contributing to your blog you can cover many more topics, all through different voices. Treat your blog like a magazine. Magazines have a number of different authors who contribute, which also increases the content being added to a site. If you have team members in different departments of the business, get them writing. Sales members and customer service members have different questions from customers, which means different blog topics. Get them to write an article on some of the most popular questions customers have. Increases post from one a week by one writer to one a day from multiple writers.
  3. Spin the content – First thing’s first, don’t copy content or duplicate any. The idea behind spinning articles is to touch base on popular topics often. You may find one article or topic did very well with the readers. Now is the time to revisit the topic. Take the time to spin an article with more focused points. For instance, say you have created a top 5 list that did very well with the readers. Now create focused articles on those five points. This will give you the chance to touch base with the popular topic along with provide some excellent information for your readers. *Note – this isn’t about spinning with some tools, but revisiting the topic and adding more into it.
  4. Get your content shared – There are writers around the world that are being skipped over. The main reason for this is no one is finding their content. It can be very difficult getting your articles shared and viewed, if it was easy everyone would do it. To start off get friends and family sharing your articles. If you have different content writers working on articles, have them share the content as well. Contact sites within the industry and ask for them to share your content. If it is something that is useful, informative, and entertaining chances are they would love to post it. See our Social Media Services
  5. Use visual aides – Don’t limit your blog posts to just words. Create videos, infographs, and make sure to include images with your posts. Sixty-five percent of people are visual learners, which means your articles need to be enticing. Images are a great way to boost the search engine optimization on the page. Make sure to use focused keywords within the title and alt tags, but never keyword stuff.

Author: Chris Hickman is the Founder and CEO at Adficient with 14 years of experience in search marketing and conversion optimization. In 2006 he founded Adwords Suspension and Google Penalty recovery service at GetBackonGoogle.com to help businesses and websites to get back on Google.

Google has been keeping a low profile for the past few years as far as sweeping changes to its algorithms are concerned. Of course, there has been a fair amount of change in the layout of the SERPs, the launch of a mobile-friendly update, and RankBrain, its latest effort in artificial intelligence for Google search. However, there hasn’t been any action as far as the Panda and the Penguin updates are concerned. Now, after a really extended period, a Penguin-related release has been announced by Google. Popularly being referred to as Penguin 4.0, the update makes significant changes to the way Penguin operates and hence is of great importance to SEO specialists.

The Penguin Algorithm Revisited

The Penguin update was released by Google in 2012, on the heels of the Panda update that was announced just one year earlier. The Panda update significantly overhauled the manner on which Google evaluated the quality of content and penalized sites that were perceived to have spammy or thin content and rewarded those that offered content that was relevant, useful, valuable, original, and rich. The Penguin update acted similarly; it penalized sites that had links of doubtful quality pointing inwards or links coming from really low-quality websites. Conversely, it also rewarded those sites that possess inbound links of good quality. Penguin 2.0 and 3.0 along with some smaller updates followed.

Quite unlike most of Google’s algorithms, there is no stream of constant updates to Penguin; it instead undergoes data refreshes periodically, which can change the way Google interprets your link profile. This means that there is usually a considerable lag between the webmaster’s actions and its effect. As a leading social media marketing MumbaiCompany explains that the inclusion of bad links will become perceptible only after the next refresh, and similarly, any cleanup action would also be subject to the waiting period before bearing fruit.

Changes Ushered in by Penguin 4.0

  • Complete incorporation in the core of Google: Google has openly declared the latest Penguin update to be a part of its core algorithm set. A number of different algorithms make up Google’s core and act to evaluate the rank of a site for a specified search term. With its integration into Google’s core, Penguin is now a more significant component of the page ranking technology.
  • Continuous updates: Instead of being subject to periodic refreshes, Penguin 4.0 is now programmed to update constantly. What this means for SEO practitioners, is that the cause and effect are almost instantaneous; for example, the inclusion of spammy links could have the site being penalized immediately instead of the effect being noticeable only after the periodic refresh. Conversely, if you have taken action to clean up your act, then the benefit will also be available immediately.
  • No more full-domain penalties: Earlier, if Google received an indication that the site had a bad reputation link pointing to one of the pages inside, it would penalize the entire site by driving it down the results page. Now, instead,only the page containing the disreputable link will be penalized.

Key Lessons for Marketers and SEO Practitioners

Faster consequences: Penguin 4.0 lifts and penalties are almost instantaneous. This means that if you have managed to clean up your link profile and files a request for reconsideration, you will be able to extricate yourself out of the mess more quickly than ever before. On the other hand, if you have indulged in any black-hat practices of building links, you can be sure that you will be penalized almost instantly.

Refinement in link evaluation: Although Google has not indicated that there is any change to the way it evaluates the quality of links, the launch of Penguin 4.0 is a perfect opportunity for site managers to review their practices of link-building. You need to make sure that you are only building links that are valuable and relevant to your audiences, and that you are only targeting sites that have a good reputation and high authority for the rub-off effect. It is also the ideal time to figure out if you have been using anchor text that is appropriate and enveloping your links with content that is well-written and useful.

Effect of volatility in SERPs: While it is likely that the instant consequences of Penguin 4.0 will make the search rankings more volatile, it is also quite clear that the changes at any given point of time will be incremental because of the series of constant changes rather than the potential of sweeping changes of periodic refreshes of the earlier version of Penguin. Thus the overall effect will tend to be generally far less noticeable than before.

Conclusion

Google seems to be working on algorithm consolidation so that their operation is more streamlined, less noticeable, and more gradual while being quicker. Penguin 4.0’s incorporation in Google’s core is not the first such instance – it has taken this path earlier with Panda, and it is likely that this trend will continue. Google’s seems to have attained a more solid foundation for determining rankings and consequently, it is expected that the volatility of search results will be driven down.

Before you begin to design a website, you will need to have a domain name and a reliable web hosting service. This article provides tips for the design phase as well as identifying a reliable low-cost host. This would be very helpful for small business owners who cannot afford the additional cost of professional web design companies and accompanying hosting services.

Designing your website

  1. Consider hosting on WordPress

WordPress is a popular content management system that is loved by designers and clients alike because it is flexible; constantly growing and it can be used by anyone, even if you have minimal design experience. All you need to do is select from thousands of free and premium themes add your website text for various pages and then are ready to go live.

  1. Have clean design

Forget about the flashy, multicolored designs you’ve seen with loud backgrounds, banners and loud, flashy buttons. Minimalism and simplicity are in with today’s websites. If you’re building your website on WordPress, pick out a clean yet crisp theme on which to base your website. WordPress also has a number of HTML5 themes – this means that they utilize specialized coding to make website pages load faster as well as allow for interactive aspects while allowing search engines to understand the content.

  1. Use simple navigation

Try not to overwhelm site visitors by offering ten different pages on your menu bar. Begin by writing down a navigation plan that makes sense. The main navigation pane should have no more than seven menu items, which other sub-menu items logically flowing from these seven. The most common ones are Home, Services, About and Contact Us. Depending on your line of business, you can have two or three more main navigation items.

  1. Follow the rules of white space and large fonts

Larger fonts make page content easier to read for the average web user. The standard is to have fonts being at least 14 pixels. Careful use of whitespace between elements can make it easier to scan content quickly and digest information on a webpage effectively. Choose themes that do not overload the page with information by trying to cram every detail ‘above the fold’ (the space on a webpage which can be viewed without hitting the scroll button). You may think so now, but we promise you, not everything is important.

  1. Create a responsive website

Responsive websites will ensure that your website loads optimally regardless of the device being used to access it. There are specific responsive themes that you can choose from if using WordPress or any other CMS, to ensure that viewers can see your site properly depending on device. If the text is too small or webpages do not resize according to screen size, not only will your user experience be wanting, search engines will not rank your site very highly for mobile and even desktop queries.

By 2014, the number of users running queries on their mobile devices exceeded number of users running queries on desktop sites, and this trend continues to grow with technological advancements. Imagine, therefore, how much you stand to lose by not having an optimized website.

  1. Spare your pocket

Unless you can comfortably afford it, or you need extremely customized website design, there’s no reason you should invest thousands of dollars towards web design. Many people are unknowingly goaded into investing much of their funds towards web design, only to end up with a very basic WordPress site they could have created themselves.

This is especially important for young businesses that don’t have a lot of extra funds to spare. The only things that you need to invest in are the domain name, hosting services and a premium theme that will render a quality website. If you can’t afford it, there are still thousands of free WordPress themes you can use to build your site.

  1. Stick to one or two columns

The multiple-column website looks crumped up, which is why simpler single or double-column websites are growing in popularity. 3-column websites are not only difficult to read, they provide too much information at once, forcing the user’s eye to scan too many different elements without being able to process the information. Select themes with one or two columns for the best results.

Choosing a hosting service

Not every low-cost hosting service is bad; there are many affordable and reliable web hosting service providers. As a website owner, reliability and good service are the two most important aspects to look for in a web hosting company. There are cheap hosts that are just as good as virtual private servers or dedicated hosts out there.

When starting out, you can go for shared hosting and then move to a more specialized package once your website has accumulated enough traffic for the extra resources. Provided you do your research and the web host offers adequate features for you to run your website, you should feel free to use them for your site.

So, how do you define cheap? Due to technological advancements, web hosting services have become cheaper over the years. Today, you can find reliable hosting for as little as $5 per month, with adequate features for a starter website.

Adequate features can be loosely translated as hosting for 50-100 moderately active domains, rudimentary web stats support, web mail and email services, updated MySQL and PHP, auto-script installation, basic technical support and minimum 99.8% uptimes. Additional features that would be preferred include periodic malware scanning, additional dedicated IP with private SSL certification and regular server backups. However, for $5 a month, you can’t expect the moon. Weigh your own package to see if it’s acceptable for the features you need.

 

Conclusion

Even if you’re on a budget, there are many different ways you can establish an online footprint that’s worthy of the name of your business. If you can afford to, you can hire a freelance designer to customize certain aspects of your theme to make your site more ideal for your uses. Insofar as web hosting goes, the most important detail isn’t the price-tag attached to the services. Instead, carry out your research from existing clients to find out the quality of service the host provides. If there are any problems or downsides, ask yourself whether they are trade-offs you’re willing to make for the affordability that you require.

 

Many businesses have still not taken a keen interest in implementing SEO as an online marketing strategy. Many are held up in limbo, still trying to pinpoint its relevance, and by the time they implement it, they are overtaken by events and do not realize the full benefit they would otherwise have enjoyed by fast tracking the process.

To understand why SEO is important, consider these aspects;

  1. Investment- SEO’s return on investment is huge and its impact can be felt almost instantaneously. By applying data analytics, e.g. premium or free Google analytics solutions, you are able to see the impacts of such optimization. Rising to the top search Engine result pages (SERPs), hugely increases sales and market penetration.
  2. Healthy content profile – SEO helps your business build a health online profile and rich content over time. This is important so that as the search engines and algorithms change, and new platforms come into play, e.g. social media platforms, your business’ high online presence is maintained. Without SEO, your online content profile would be inexistent, which is damaging.
  3. Competitive edge- SEO gives you a competitive advantage in realization of higher sales, better content profile, and better monitoring of performance by use of web analytics that help you keep track of your SERPs ranking and return on SEO investment.
  4. Larger market share-Today, search engines are commanding a higher share of the market unlike a few years ago. Almost 80% of the clients search for services online or check reviews before making their purchase. This gives your business a good platform to position themselves to capture this market through an elaborate SEO undertaking, by making your services, products and content easily accessible through the search engines.
  5. Cost-effective advertising- SEO offers practically inexpensive marketing, compared to other online marketing platforms, e.g. Pay Per Click (PPC), social media, or purchasing email leads. In addition, almost all online marketing platforms find their basis on SEO, so why not take SEO as the first option.

Your competitors are pulling away.

There’s a suited opportunity charge in waiting to earn involved in SEO, by way of explanation if your competitors are heretofore pursuing an SEO strategy. They’re doing two kit and kaboodle of in a class by itself importance: First, they’re cementing their ranking positions on highly lucky keywords; so, the longer you serenade, the greater has a head start they have to devise defenses for their position.Second, they’re targeting dressy keywords and finding that territory. The longer you serenade, subsequently, the greater of these nifty keyword opportunities you’ll desire out on. Getting involved as a matter of choice opens you up to more potential opportunities for visibility once up on a time they’re captured by your competitors.You can’t go unsuitable, someday if you seldom m dip your toes in.

Finally, there’s no goal to be compliant here.

Some SEO agencies commit attempt to contract mutually you for six months, or a year or longer, because for results takes time. However, you’ll have contrasting options. For instance, I don’t urge any has a head start commitments from my clients such as Office-Alliance which is a office rental company based in Huntsville, AL, and you can evermore increase or draw to a close your investment contained in each your pity level. With SEO, your options are inexhaustible, and it’s comparatively much ghost of a chance to imitate yourself facing a corner.

The answer is that if you’re in working order to do SEO, the willingly you run, the better. You’ll win to a assured ROI faster, you’ll gain more money completely the daydream haul,you’ll lack opportunities as they hit up and you’ll prohibit your democracy from back rub you to the punch.

Undertaking SEO for your business may be a tasking exercise, but a worthwhile one. There are several options that are relatively inexpensive and sustainable. You can take simple SEO classes, and be equipped as SEO expert, and be able to carry out the SEO exercise yourself.

Online networking advertising has turned into an extremely valuable instrument for organizations to use to showcase their items, administrations or thoughts they need to impart to potential customers. Online networking stages, for example, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and so on., have been on the ascent for as far back as decade and specialists are figuring out how to utilize them successfully to advertise their business.

There are four stages to advertise an item, benefit or a thought effectively through online networking showcasing. The four stages are separated to:

  • Create dependable connections
  • Serve an alluring reason
  • Paid for results, not diligent work
  • Effectiveness of your promoting technique

 

– Create Long-Lasting Relationships:

Connections are the way to being effective in any business or industry. Connections are the portal to being acquainted with the new prospects in your market for your customer base from a decent referral. A quality relationship where the organization delegate has fulfilled the client more than they had been relied upon can prompt to a referral, which is a need in web-based social networking showcasing. Advertisers ought to begin to make enduring connections at systems administration occasions where their objective prospects are situated at, and send referrals to potential prospects that need an administration while expecting nothing consequently from the potential prospect. The referrals will come in once the advertiser meets the potential prospect again when the prospect has discovered that the referral that was sent to them was alluded from the advertiser.

– Serve an Attractive Purpose:

The key to an alluring reason for existing is consummating the blend of expanding deals in the association and the reason that the objective group is pulled in to. Many organizations in the market today give a specific rate of their returns to various sorts of philanthropies or to outside nations that need assets. For instance, an organization that gives a considerable measure of continues to Kenya is an organization known as Artiken, who has practical experience in wristbands for runners. These wristbands are high quality in Kenya and are foreign to a wide range of nations and the organization has ensured to give a bit of their income back to Kenya to supply clean water and to present occupations all through Kenya. This promoting methodology is an immaculate mix of having an alluring reason to the objective group alongside expanding deals in the organization.

– Paid for Results, not Hard Work

In business, there is a contrast between objective driven and results driven. Objective driven is the meaning of diligent work, and a person that is results driven is comprehended to be accomplishment orientated. In online networking showcasing, the individual is paid by the deals that are acquired from the organization they are speaking to, which implies that the advertiser must be accomplishment orientated and comes about driven. A technique to deal with your time through advertising is deciding the most imperative exercises for the week. While dispensing with the less critical needs, the most essential exercises must be recognized and the movement that must be finished ought to be assigned as the most imperative need.

– Effectiveness of your Marketing Strategy

Web-based social networking showcasing can be an extremely viable instrument for organizations, yet just on the off chance that it dissected and measured accurately. All together for your promoting to be compelling for your business you should investigate to affirm if the present showcasing methodology is an advantage to the organization. Reliable contact with the clients will keep the agent redesigned on the client’s needs, and offering items the client is in requirement for. Numerous online administrations offer information investigating apparatuses where the web-based social networking advertiser can quantify socioeconomics, kind of industry and the age gather the organization’s motivation and items that are offered are most pulled in to.

We had a general public at some point back, however today we have online networking! A specialist of change, it has majorly affected our way of life, business and on the world-on the loose. There has been an expansion in straightforwardness, with a developing number of individuals conveying everything that needs to be conveyed on the social web.

There have been not really any aspects of our day by day lives, uninfluenced by this astonishing device. Ever thought about how online networking has transformed us? Interpersonal interaction stages, for example, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube et.al have gone ahead to upset the way we collaborate with each other.

Social Web 2017 – What does it resemble?

There are such a large number of energizing advancements on the social web, which has prompted to a monstrous uprising. Social informing stages, for example, Snapchat and Whatsapp have gone ahead to impact social circle in a manner that they’re currently being viewed as semi interpersonal organizations in their own particular manner.

Cell phone entrance has taken off more than ever, with around 1.65 billion worldwide dynamic portable social records. Portable has appeared to be an over the top innovation energizing development on the social circle, and turning into a specialist of interruption.

How Social Media has transformed us – The Positive Side

Our reality has changed into a Global Village, associated at all circumstances by the social web. So much is the effect of social in our lives that avoiding it can take you to annihilation, and who needs to go out of date in this day and age of concentrated availability?

Here’s a brief lowdown on the positive effect of web-based social networking:

  • Free Flowing Communication

 Keep in mind those circumstances when you dithered to impart your insight? Today, the social circle envelops unencumbered correspondence without cooperation obstructions. It empowers similar people meet up and opine on a typical stage. It helps in joining individuals working for shared objectives furthermore gives them a practical course to invest their endeavors.

  • Empowerment of Masses

Don’t you think about how online networking has transformed us, and engaged us besides? There is a mass strengthening, came about by sharing of thoughts on social circle. Masses have turned out to be more enabled and are more educated. It empowers people to get direct data and the world is turning into a littler place to live in.

  • Businesses and Marketing

Today limits amongst organizations and their intended interest groups are quickly decreasing. It has turned out to be simpler to associate with clients and obtain input. This has helped organizations concentrate on more noteworthy client centricity and increase the nature of their administrations.

The playing fields have turned out to be level today, and the force of solid business thoughts makes it feasible for organizations to flourish, with the impact of social expanding exponentially.

How Social Media has transformed us – The Downside

With a considerable lot of favorable circumstances, it is anything but difficult to trust that the social circle is a blushing way, prompting to positive changes. The way is in any case, not that ruddy! The thistles that stick up with the advantages of going social likewise have the ability to smother the sweet fragrance of its different points of interest. Talked about beneath are some ways the social circle hasn’t been too bravo:

  • Lack of Authenticity

There is such a great amount of information on the social circle, that it could be extremely testing to filter through genuine data. Legitimacy is left best to the tact of overall population, which makes them exceedingly stubborn as well. This absence of genuine data makes the vast majority misguided and even starts pointless tirades.

  • Mudslinging and Angry Social Mobs

Cherish devouring news all the time from your most loved interpersonal interaction site? It can be extraordinary to get news on your fingertips, however not very great on the off chance that it turns into a judgment ground for anything. While this has a positive result much of the time, there is additionally a drawback to it. Once in a while the news goes ahead to start mass social wars that outcome in monstrous political tirades took after by criticism and mudslinging on open stages.

  • Lack of Security

At whatever point confronted with the topic of how online networking has transformed us, single word that rings a bell is instability… Because of the humongous measure of educational trades on the social circle, it has turned into a main champion of doubt. It has turned out to be one of those channels of correspondence, which is progressively being considered as shaky and dishonest. It empowers dispersal of data to deceitful groups of onlookers, prompting to more prominent wrongdoing rates.

That was a legit bit about the drawback and upside of going social from our end… If I somehow managed to finish up about how online networking has transformed us, I’d say that it has its own good and bad times, however it is dependent upon us to make the best out of it. It is basic to practice alert while utilizing it, however the advantages of online networking are too great to ever be disregarded.

Author Bio 

Anand Rajendran is the founder and CEO of Zonaid technologies, a leading SEO Los Angeles company. Zonaid tech has offered services to all types of businesses with professionals for more than 6 years, enabling them to ensure progress levels in online business. One can also visit Zonaid.com for knowing more details quickly.

Advances in technology have positively affected various industries. One of these is the advertising industry. Modern technology is now being used to advertise. This type of promotion is known as digital signage. Also referred to as dynamic signage, it is a unique form of advertising where multimedia content is strategically displayed to the public to increase brand awareness for a company. This multimedia is displayed using technological devices such as LED arrangements and even LCD flat panel screens. The infrastructure that is required to perform this type of advertising is installed by professional companies such as DoPublicity. Digital signage multimedia can be static or dynamic. Static content is images, presentations and videos which do not change after you display them in your digital signage. On the other hand, dynamic content is multimedia content which changes according to the location, weather, time or even the user input in your digital signage displays.

By using digital signage, a company can improve its brand awareness by maximizing the power of visual content. By displaying multimedia material, in addition to a well rounded advertising plan (including advertising flags & signs ), a company can develop a strong corporate culture, keep their current customers and even attract new ones. One may think that creating the content for the digital signage is a challenging task. As a matter of fact, it is quite manageable if you use the right tools. There are some special tools that are used to develop the themes and templates of digital signage. These tools can help you to create and display static or dynamic content. There are tools you can use to create the content for your digital signage. Some are free and others require a small investment. Read on to discover more about them.

Google Drawings

Ideal for designing static material for digital signage, Google Drawings helps you to come up with diagrams and charts, which you can display in your digital signage. These diagrams can be used alongside any other types of media that you want to display. Google Drawings can help you to render business metrics and communicate them to your employees, customers and other stakeholders. Moreover, the charts and graphs which you create in Google Drawings are formatted such that you can simply embed them into other documents if you desire. This tool is available as a free add-on for the Chrome Browser.

Padlet

This is a tool that allows for team collaboration in the development of multimedia for digital signage. Padlet provides you with a blank canvas where you can add images, text, videos, GIFs and any other multimedia material for advertising purposes. The tool allows you to simply select, drag and drop these elements anywhere in the canvas. You can proceed to manipulate them as you see fit. It is a web-based tool. Therefore, other team members can log on and help you to design the multimedia or your digital signage. With Padlet, you can create a static design and then export it as a JPEG image. This allows you to post it in your displays for advertising. This boosts convenience and gives creative freedom to you and your team.

WeVideo

Based in the Cloud, WeVideo is a software tool that allows you and your team to create video material for your digital signage. Simply shoot some video footage and then log into WeVideo. Upload it there and proceed to edit it using the tool’s features. After that, you can share your progress with the rest of your team. They can log in too and assist you to create the material for your digital signage. WeVideo is ideal for use by marketing or creative departments in charge of digital signage.

Magisto

Sometimes, you may be short of time as you create your multimedia for digital signage. In such a situation, you need a tool that will perform the video editing for you. The ideal tool for this is known as Magisto. With this digital signage tool, you simply upload the video footage that you want to display. The tool analyzes the visual features of your footage and detects the motion of the camera, speech and expressions on the faces of the people you captured. After doing that, magisto asks you to pick a style of editing from a menu within the tool. Once you pick the one you want, it automatically applies the style to your entire footage. It is now ready for display in your digital signage.

Geckoboard

Digital signage can be used to communicate with your employees within the company. You can use the digital signage displays to inform them about company performance or market statistics. Geckoboard is a tool you can use to accomplish this. It can combine the data from your Excel documents as well as web-based sources, such as Salesforce, Basecamp and Zendesk to create an information dashboard. It is an effective tool for visually communicating strategic information to all stakeholders who walk into your company premises.

RSS to HTML tool

Everybody is interested in some type of news. This includes your employees and customers. You can use tools to design templates for displaying news in your digital signage. Many news websites stream the latest news using RSS Feeds. There is a tool that you can use to stream these feeds directly to your displays. It is known as RSS to HTML. This one allows you to identify the specific RSS feeds that you want to display in your digital signage. After that, it helps you to create a special HTML page that can hold these news feeds. Eventually, RSS to HTML allows you to display this custom HTML page to your customers and even employees through your digital signage.

Conclusion

Digital signage is the future of advertising. Today, promotional material is being displayed in LCD screens and using LED arrangements. Special tools are used to design these themes and layouts for digital signage advertisements. Some of them have been mentioned above. If you are coming up with some content for your digital signage, utilize these tools for a more efficient experience.

Bio

Emmzie Toomz is a digital signage content designer. She is always aware of the latest trends in signage design, templates and themes. To accomplish her work, Emmzie uses the latest tools in the market. For over three years, she has used them to provide work for companies such as Dopublicity.com.

Doing business on the internet is getting tougher by the day. This is one the most volatile business environments and with the increasing competition, more brands are at risk of losing business to their rivals. This fast paced marketplace is making it harder for marketers seeking to leverage growing numbers as they are not able to master emerging trends in time.

One notable trend in online marketing is the application of social media in online marketing and as an online marketer, you have to stay abreast of such developments. If you have been struggling to boost your brand on the fast paced internet market, you need to get more insight on how social media can help you do this.

Importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

One of the toughest tasks a marketer has to perform is maintaining relevance on search engines. Many websites are still struggling to make a breakthrough on search engines even though they have invested heavily in fantastic websites. The problem lies in poor search engine optimization (SEO) which leads to low ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs).

Search engine optimization remains one of the most misunderstood online marketing strategies and it is no wonder many webmasters are finding it hard to take advantage of growing internet user numbers. Without a solid SEO strategy, your site cannot rank highly on SERPs and in return, you cannot meet your business goals. A 2015 study now shows that over 75% of internet users don’t bother visiting websites that are not appearing on the first page of search engines.

An Outbrain Content Discovery and Engagement Report shows that Google search is the main source of internet traffic to websites. In essence, your website should rank highly on search engines if at all you expect to attract traffic.

There are so many factors affecting an SEO campaign. For instance, a Techcrunch study says 10 of the world’s busiest websites are found in the U.S. but then again, 86% of their visitors are from outside the country. In such a case, reaching the target audience can be tricky. At the same time, SEO tools that were hitherto popular such as link building and keyword stuffing cannot pass muster, especially due to the Google algorithm updates.

Social Media for SEO

Consider these simple figures; Facebook boasts over 1.7 billion monthly active users (MAUs) while Instagram has over 500 million monthly active users (MAUs). There are over 300 million monthly active users on Twitter and millions others on other social media platforms including Snapchat, Periscope, LinkedIn, Weibo and Google+.

These numbers highlight the power of social media which a good marketer can harness to boost their online success. If your website is struggling to attract quality traffic and better conversion rates, you can now use social media as part of your SEO campaign. Below are some tips to help you leverage the power of social media for search engine optimization:

  1. Create a Social Media Strategy

If you are planning to launch a social media campaign to boost traffic, always start by building a roadmap. There must be a plan that will guide social media usage. Most businesses which are decrying low ROI when using social media approach these networks the same way an individual user would. You will find Facebook accounts without any description of the business and no posts. This is a mark of inept social media for SEO.

Always start by finding the right social media tools to use and agree with your marketing team on what is to be posted, when and by whom. This means there will be a consistency on your social media handles which will eventually grow your brand. A haphazard social media strategy is counterproductive and you will end up disappointing your target audience.

  1. Start Getting Followers Organically

One advantage of social media is the fast flow of information and this can help boost the number of your followers rapidly. You can easily integrate other marketing mediums including print to launch your social media campaign in order to reach a larger audience. Once people start talking about your social media presence, make sure you engage the early adopters through incentives such as referrals rewards. The more brand mentions on social media, the better the impact of your SEO strategy.

  1. Stay Active on Social Media

The more visible your brand is the better. It is always tricky to balance how frequent you should post but you should always allow enough time to let your audience digest the current post before posting another one. If the conversation is going on rapidly, always make sure you guide it around the initial post in order to meet your SEO objectives. Always make sure you are engaging with your followers as this increases their trust in your brand and makes it more likely for them to visit your website.

  1. Optimize Your Content And Profiles

The same principles that guide your online SEO strategy must also be applied in social media SEO. For instance, create content and profile descriptions that utilize relevant keywords which would boost traffic to your website. More importantly, create content that can be shared rapidly and easily and always take any chance to include your contacts, call to action and physical address on your description. It is also important to tell people what you want them to do depending on the social media network you are using. For instance, do you want them to repost, retweet, like or follow?

  1. Find 3rd Party Endorsements

You can achieve your SEO objectives on social media by increasing your brand mentions. Such mentions should come from authorities in your niche. Start by visiting authority social media networks and then follow them before seeking endorsements. Internet users are more attracted to such posts and they will eventually come for more.

Conclusion

Gaining traction online is hard for a new business website. However, you can use social media to overcome such hurdles. There are many networks with a high ROI and you just need to develop the right strategy and make sure your posts remain relevant. Your SEO strategy just became easier to implement with social media; why keep struggling to gain traffic?

 

Author Bio: Lalit Sharma is an SEO consultant who runs a SEO house called Ranking By SEO. He is specialized in link building and other SEO related activities. You can also find him on Twitter, Google+ and his personal blog.

SEO or search engine optimization refers to techniques and practices used to influence a website’s ranking position in the search engine results page. Unlike traditional SEO, local SEO efforts are a lot more nuanced. There’s a lot more detail involved, more work, various elements you need to consider and, of course, a greater chance of messing it up. When executed properly, local SEO allows potential clients to find your business more easily. That said, here are 6 SEO tactics you should use to take over the local market.

1.    Title and meta tags are still important

Title tags and meta tags represent specific HTML elements which can be customized to reflect your website’s content. They are both displayed in the search results, with the acceptable length for the title being around 50-60 characters and 160-200 characters for the description tags. Titles and descriptions need to be compelling, descriptive and unique, or else you risk getting a low click-through rate. For reaching local customers, it is best to include the name of the city and the area where your business resides, as well as the targeted keyword which should be placed close to the beginning of the title tag.

2.    Claim the Google My Business page

Claiming the Google My Business, as well as Bing Places for Business pages is crucial for local businesses. Not only is it free, but it provides a good level of exposure, which is imperative for driving local traffic. Claiming the Google My Business page is simple, all you have to do is visit the GMB page and go through a simple verification process. This process is used to let Google know your business is legitimate. Once claimed, you have to optimize the page using a proper description and details such as business hours, categories, payment types, etc.

3.    Optimizing for online directories

According to a study performed by Google, 80% of consumers use the search engines to perform local searches. Unfortunately, most small businesses simply don’t claim their local business listing and miss an excellent SEO opportunity. Green Web Marketing experts recommend that you list your business consistently and correctly in various business directories such as City search, Merchant Circle, and Yelp. Your NAP or name, address and phone number need to be correct and present on various listings, as well as on citation data aggregators such as Acxiom, Factual, Infogroup and Neustar. Any discrepancies in the data, such as abbreviations, misspellings, and wrong numbers are detrimental for local SEO, so make sure to double check the information you provide.

4.    Use a local schema markup

Schema markups, or structured data markups, are used to provide major search engines with additional information regarding your business. This includes any products and services you’re offering, reviews your business has collected, etc. Schema markups are an excellent addition to doing local SEO, as they help Google’s spiders to better determine exactly what your content is all about. Google is offering a dedicated, Structured Data Testing Tool which you can use to check if your schema markup is correctly implemented. For those who don’t have enough experience, or simply don’t like coding, there’s another Google tool called Data Highlighter, which lets you mark your content up by using a mouse.

5.    Work on getting (positive) reviews

Google My Business page and your business’ Facebook page are the two single most important places you should work getting reviews on. As most people use social media on a daily basis, having positive reviews on your profile can actually help drive traffic to your business. Google My Pages is equally important; as the reviews, you collect are displayed in the search engine results page whenever someone tries to look up your business. You can use various marketing software tools to monitor and maintain your reputation on social media, such as Reputation Loop, Trust Pilot, and Vendasta.

6.    Use PPC for advertising

Getting your website to rank high takes a lot of time and while you wait you can use paid search to significantly boost your business profile. As a local entrepreneur, you can use PPC, or pay-per-click ads to target specific keywords your local customers are likely to type in the search bar. Once they do, the results should display your business at the very top. Simple phrases cost more than longer words, and as such are prone to a lot of competition. This is why it’s recommended to focus on a long tailed keyword which precisely targets the customer base. This way, you not only save money but also attract just the right kind of consumers.

There are more local SEO tactics which were not covered in this article, such as link building and advanced local strategies which help both with traditional and local SEO efforts. However, these techniques represent the utmost necessity when it comes to comes to local SEO efforts. If properly implemented, these practices create an excellent foundation on top of which you should proceed building the rest of your local SEO campaign and absolutely dominate the local market.

 

Steven Clarke is a digital marketing specialist. In his spare time, he likes to write about his ideas and share them with the world. Steven is a regular contributor to several websites.

A content audit for SEO is important to consider and includes an entire inventory of indexable content on the domain, a close monitoring and analysis of the content with the use of performance metrics in order to help determine which content to keep and which to improve. There will be SEO content which might be kept as it is and those that require improvement. Indeed, such performance metrics can be derived from various sources to improve the content through consolidation and removal. Besides this, there are several other reasons for considering SEO content auditing.

Key Reasons for Auditing SEO Content

A content audit is must to consider. It is done for better outcomes and indeed there are various purposes for doing so. When it comes to SEO, a content audit can help you determine the following:

  • Tricks to escaping search engine ranking penalty or filter relating to the content.
  • Identifying content that needs editing or copywriting for an improved quality
  • Tracing out content that requires improvement and needs to be updated
  • Content requiring consolidation just because of overlapping topics
  • Content to be eliminated or removed from the site
  • The finest way to prioritize which content should be kept and which should be removed
  • Determine the content gap opportunity
  • Determine which content ranks for what set of keywords
  • Which content must rank for a particular set of keywords
  • Determine strong pages on the domain and tricks to leveraging them
  • Finding unraveled content marketing opportunity

Although each of the above-mentioned insights and outcomes is the result of a content audit, the overall purpose of the content audit may be summed up in a few words. The chief purpose of the content audit is simply to enhance the perceived quality and trust of the domain. It also optimizes the crawl budget, the ranking signals and the PR or flow of page ranking. If you wish to achieve such goals, it is must to remove poor quality content from the various indexes of search engines.

Some Tips to Consider for SEO Content Auditing

Just like in the case of SEO, from on-page changes, technical changes to site migrations, things can go wrong when you are performing content auditing. Follow the tips to content auditing:

  • Take an inventory of the content that is available for indexation. The content will be analyzed against various metrics and the ‘action of what’ and the ‘details of HOW to do’ will be prepared.
  • The process of the audit may be split roughly into three different phases like, inventory and auditing, further analysis and suggestions for improvement, summarizing the whole thing and reporting.
  • The task of taking inventory of content starts from crawling the site.
  • Crawl all the various indexable URLs

An auditing dashboard is also needed internally for content auditing. A content audit will help you to arrive at the recommendations or tips for improving the site content.

Author’s Bio: If you are seeking SEO content auditing, get in touch with Mark Samuel belonging to the reliable SEO firm www.sandcrestseo.com/denver-seo.