Archive for the ‘SEO’ Category

#TWT5 Youtube Now Second Largest Search Engine

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

Check out this week’s top 5 digital marketing stats and key takeaways!

Digital Marketing stats | PPC Management Agency

Key Takeaway:

Video and images can convey your business and marketing messages much quicker than any piece of written content. If you don’t yet have a YouTube presence for your company, it’s about time you start. Just make sure that your strategy matches with your end goals. (Stat Source: Social Media Today)

Key Takeaway:

As a digital marketing specialist, this statistic jumped out at me because honestly I expected it to be a much higher percentage. It’s typically considered best practices to remove main website navigation on your PPC landing pages. This is because you want the visitors of that page to make one single action, and you want to do everything in your power to drive them take that action. So navigation buttons are just distractions and ways for visitors to easily leave your landing page and forget all about your juicy offer on the page. (Stat Source: MarketingSherpa)

Key Takeaway:

I constantly hear people saying statements like “email is dead” and “no one reads emails anymore” which is why I love this stat. Email is not dead. Email marketing can be a solid component to your online marketing strategy, it just shouldn’t be the only way you market to your audiences. Great email campaigns that run with a solid SEO and PPC strategy can prove very successful for many businesses. (Stat Source: HubSpot)

Key Takeaway:

I’m going to let you in on a little secret: Google’s keyword planner tool is not very helpful when conducting keyword research for your business. It almost feels like they are trying to make it difficult for you to uncover terms people are actually using. It’s best to use it for reference but also use other tools and research methods to uncover the terms people are actually using to find the types of products and services you offer. (Stat Source: Webbiquity)

Key Takeaway:

For years, business owners doubted the power of social media, but this stat makes it clear that the majority of businesses should be using social sites to their advantage. Social media is about authentically connecting with your audiences and building trust. (Stat Source: Top Rank Online Marketing)

So there you have it! We hope you learned something new today. If you have any questions about how these stats relate to your business, shoot us an email!

#TWT5 Digital Marketing Stats & Key Takeaways: Inbound Marketing, Click-to-Call Advertising, & More

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

Check out the freshest marketing statistics we’ve compiled just for you.

PPC Management Agency

Key Takeaway:

The days of pushing your message onto consumers are over. Rather than dumping your budget into traditional outbound methods of direct mail, tradeshows and telemarketing, you should be focusing on inbound marketing, which includes SEO, blogging, and social media. It’s much easier to attract prospects to your marketing messages rather than forcing them onto prospects through outbound marketing. (Stat Source: Search Engine Journal)

Key Takeaway:

The great thing about most social media sites now is, not only are you building brand awareness through your social presence, but you also have ample opportunity to experiment with social advertising platforms. Plus, there is advanced ability to target your key audience through social advertising as well. (Stat Source: Content Marketing Institute)

Key Takeaway:

It’s imperative that you make it as easy as possible for people to contact you no matter which device they are using to look at your products or services. It may seem silly, but most people believe it takes too much time to copy a phone number from a website in order to call up the company. If they can’t click to call, they will probably get distracted and you’ll lose that potential customer. You may also want to consider creating instant chat features on your website too. (Stat Source: Marchex)

Key Takeaway:

Practically every mobile marketing statistic out there continues to increase year after year. Yelp is especially important for local businesses, as many people are searching for businesses on their phones from their Yelp apps while they are out and about. If you’re not on Yelp, you’re potential customers will have a harder time finding your business. (Stat Source: Yelp)

Key Takeaway:

That’s a BIG number. That means only 11.5% of websites use fixed widths. By the way, these stats are based on Alexa’s top 100 sites, in case you were curious. Additionally, 40% of the responsive websites have a max-width between 900 and 1000 pixels, while 26% go above 1800px. The bottom line here is that you just need to make sure your website looks great across all devices. (Stat Source: Code It Down)

If you have any questions about how you can improve your online marketing, feel free to drop us a line!

Top 10 Tips for Optimizing Your Website

Monday, July 7th, 2014

Optimization is an ongoing effort. The Internet is in a constant change of state and you should be too. It can be a challenge to keep up on the latest tactics and best practices for SEO and as such we’ve put together these top 10 website optimization tips to take a little weight off.

website optimization tips

1. Monitor Your Current Status

It’s important to know where you stand before you jump into anything else. Check your websites PageRank, Alexa rank, and the number of indexed pages on Bing and Google. Additionally, checking traffic (by total and by source) and goals will give you a baseline understanding of your current status on the web so you can create goals and benchmarks for the future.

2. Keyword Research

Even if you’ve already conducted keyword research in the past, it’s important to update your findings on a consistent basis. Whether you work in an ever-changing industry or one that hasn’t changed in decades, the way people search is and always has been evolving (think trends, nomenclature, industry speak, customer speak, etc.) Search query data will show you how your customers are evolving and searching for your products and services. These data insights will help you continue to target traffic-generating terms related to your customer.

3. Internal Link Strategy

Beyond your website navigation, your site should include contextual links that point to other pages throughout the site within your copy. Also, make sure all the links on your site include optimized title tags. Think about how each page touches the customer in their purchase journey and add next step links accordingly.

4. Create a Sitemap

The sitemap is where people go when they can’t find what they’re looking for. It’s an organized list of all the content on your site. It’s also used by search engines so they know all the pages on your site and can index them.

5. Search Friendly URLs

Make your URLs search friendly using those keywords you discovered in your keyword research phase. This will give you a better chance at ranking higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for those targeted terms.

6. Title & Meta-Description Tags

Review your Title and Meta Description tags on every page of your site to make sure they are also optimized using your keywords. Keep in mind the title tag should not be more than 70-80 characters max and the description tag should not be more than 170 characters max.

7. Image Descriptions

Check your image alt tags and descriptions. Are they optimized with the keywords you want to rank for? If not, go through and add optimized alt tags and description to every image. You might even want to try naming the image itself with your keywords.

8. Social Media

Social media is an integrated part of SEO in today’s search landscape. Make sure your social profiles are accessible from your website. Also, allow visitors to share your web content easily by adding social share buttons to every page. You’d be surprised how many companies mess this up. You find an article you like and want to share it, click the Facebook icon, only to be taken to their company profile. FAIL! Really take the time to ensure the social sharing features are working properly on your site to boost your SEO strategy.

9. Link to Other Sites

Linking to other sites is a great way to start nurturing relations with other publishers. In the future, they will be more inclined to link to you if they know you’ve linked to them. Just don’t be spammy. Be authentic and you will be successful.

10. Download our eBook

Get the 10th website optimization tip in our eBook – 25 Website Must-haves for Driving Traffic, Leads and Sales.










Are You Targeting the Right Keywords in Your On-Page SEO?

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

When was the last time you updated or reviewed your on-page search engine optimization efforts? Reviewing your on-page SEO on a regular basis is imperative to staying current with search habits and nomenclature of prospective customers. If you’re targeting the wrong keywords, this can generate unqualified audiences to your site resulting in high traffic and low conversions.

on page search engine optimization

Taking the time to target the right keywords in your on-page SEO not only will help bring targeted audiences to your front-door but will also help with achieving search engine visibility and rankings. It may also contribute to earning traffic from social networks and building trust among visitors.

Selecting Primary Keywords

When determining which keywords to choose for your site, take it page by page. Make sure that each page targets a single searcher intent and use an associated keyword phrase to go alone with it.

Additionally, think about how each page of your site ties into your purchase cycle. For example, if someone is on your case studies page, they are evaluating whether you are the right firm to hire. This would fall into your consideration phase of purchase, so you would want to choose your keywords accordingly. Mapping user intent in this way will help you maximize leads.

Next, it’s important to look at the search volume data for each keyword. Picking long-tail keywords with lower search volume can help you target a very specific audience that is interested in your products and services. Alternatively, picking keywords with ridiculously large search volume and competitive data is going to make it very difficult for your site to rank for that term (unless you have your site has a lot of authority).

In general, it’s best to pick one main keyword per page to optimize around, and then choose a handful of related keywords to support your top pick. Since Google doesn’t really use the meta keyword tag anymore, but as a best practice we recommend including it. Your primary keywords should be placed in the following areas of each page on your site:

  • First word of the title element
  • Meta description
  • Appears in the page URL
  • Headline
  • Content
  • Phrases should be highlighted in bold/italicized/sized as appropriate
  • Image alt attributes
  • Anchor text in links pointing to the page

Including Secondary Keywords

Also, your secondary keywords can be used throughout the page as appropriate in headlines and body copy. As always, you want to make your copy well-written so that it sounds good to a human first, and a search engine second. If your keywords are making your page sound awkward you need to rework it and try again until it’s worthy to be read by a human.

Finally, just remember that on-page SEO is about balancing competing priorities. There really is no such thing as a perfectly optimized website. However, if you focus on creating pages that are uniquely valuable to your audience, targeting the appropriate keywords, and providing a good user experience, you will see an increase in traffic, leads and sales.

We will also note that keywords and keyword placement is just one component of your on-page optimization. There are many other factors at play, such as:

  • Domain http response time
  • Social metrics
  • PageRank
  • Content quantity and relevance
  • Brand mentions in news and media outlets

It’s not just about getting the keyword choices and placement down, but this is a good place to start. Then, focus on the other relevant SEO components and you’ll be positioning yourself as best you can for online success and visibility.










How to Build Inbound Links to Your Ecommerce Website in 2014

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

You may have the most fabulous website in the world, but if no one visits it, what’s the point? This is why everyone spends so much time trying to get found online. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a critical component of any website strategy, and when you’re aiming for the first page of search results like most businesses, it takes dedication and consistency.

how to build inbound links

One of the main elements of SEO is building inbound links. There’s always quite a bit of debate around this topic of inbound link building as far as what works, what doesn’t, what’s outdated, and what’s considered spam. But one thing is for sure…. Gone are the days of “creatively” leaving comments on other websites with links and optimized anchor text back to your site, in the hopes of them being approved.

In 2014, you need to seriously step up your game if you want to earn high quality inbound links from trustworthy sites. Here are some of our top tips for how to build inbound links to your ecommerce website in 2014.

Create high-quality, educational or entertaining content.

Hands down, this is the #1 thing you should be concentrating your efforts on when it comes to building inbound links. If you create stellar content, people are naturally going to want to link to it.

If you’re creating a piece of content that has been covered by many other sources, make sure you put your own unique perspective on it to make it different than what’s already out there.

Also, consider the power of visual content. Infographics, compelling images, and short videos. Pinterest is one of the top sites out there right now that helps drive traffic to other sites. If you can create something pin-worthy to promote your content, do it! For more on this, check out our articles: 3 Ways to Improve Your Visual Marketing and How to Generate Leads with Pinterest.

Submit your website to online directories.

This is an easy way to build inbound links. However, it needs to be done in the right way.
When submitting to online directories, keep the following in mind:

  • Don’t use services that offer automatic submission
  • Check the page rank of each directory you submit your website to
  • Don’t trust any list of “best” directories. Do your own research to discover the best for your business.
  • Track your submissions.
  • Don’t rely solely on directory submissions. They are a small part of the bigger picture.
  • Write guest posts for other blogs.

The topic of guest blogging has come under much scrutiny as of late. Mainly because people are abusing it, and the volume of people trying to guest blog solely to get a couple of links back to their site is resulting in an abundance of bad, low-quality guest posts.

That being said, you should strive to find opportunities for guest blogging on sites that are highly related to your industry and customers. Start with reaching out to associates and other people you know that work in your industry to discover appropriate blogs for contributing content. The main goal of guest blogging is to provide another point-of-view or expert advice that is not traditionally covered on that website. Focus on providing value and nurturing human relationships.

Researching link building opportunities with other websites.

This is a slow process that needs to be handled with care if you want to do it correctly and not get dinged by search engines. One of the best things you can do to start forming relationships with other site owners is offer help.

For example, let’s say you know of a blog that covers topics related to your industry. Rather than contacting the owner and immediately diving into your link building strategy with them, send them a link to a 3rd party article and just say, “I saw this article, and I thought your readers would find it of interest.” This will lay the groundwork for future opportunities.

Don’t borrow, beg, barter, bribe or buy links.

Do not, under ANY circumstances, beg, borrow, or buy links. These are the worst things you can do! The search engines will quickly penalize your site for participating in black hat marketing tactics. This could result in your site not getting crawled or indexed by search engines, meaning your site will have a heck of a hard time showing up anywhere in any search results.

These are just a few tips to help you determine the best way to build inbound links to your site. As you get going, feel free to share with us some of ways that have worked for you.










Marketers Need to Know the SEO Effects of 301 Redirects

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

As marketing professionals, it’s necessary to understand the technical side of websites and the internet. Understanding how 301 redirects and SEO work together is essential if you’re in charge of directing web marketing for any company.

301 redirects and seo

So how do redirects work?

Remember the last time you clicked on a broken link and saw the dreaded 404 or “Page not found” error? This usually occurs when a page has been moved to another URL and there is NO 301 redirect in place (or worse, it’s been deleted).

User experience

When a webpage is moved to another location, a permanent 301 redirect is needed in order to direct the old link to a new page. Otherwise, your customers and potential customers will not be able to find the information they were trying to locate. This can tarnish the overall user experience of your site leave a scratch on brand reputation.

How it affects SEO

Permanent 301 redirects are important for SEO because they help retain the SEO status of the old page. For example, let’s say you have a page on your website that has a high SERP (search engine results page) ranking for an important term in your industry segment, such as “Los Angeles Digital Marketing Consultants.” If you move that page and do not set up a 301 redirect, you lose any SEO status the old page once had. Which may in turn mean having to start from scratch to rank for that term once again. And no one has time for that! We’ve often been the ones to clean up severe losses in traffic and revenue due to this very topic.

However, when set up properly, the search engines will be able to determine that the old page has changed location and that the content can be found at the new URL. The search engines will then carry any link weighting from the original page to the new page.

Helpful tips

  1. Be patient when working with 301 redirects. It can take some time for search engines to discover the 301, process the information and credit the new page with the old page’s ranking and other factors. The time it takes all depends how often the spiders crawl your site pages. Make sure your team or your IT team have webmaster tools setup to monitor crawl errors and 404 errors.
  2. Be cautious of other forms of redirection, such as 302s and meta-refreshes (these are temporary and not permanent). These do not work as well as 301 redirects in terms of SEO. The only time you’d actually want to use these, is if you purposefully do not want to pass on the SEO info from the old page to the new page. A 302 redirect may be appropriate for vanity urls or holiday landing pages, temporarily redirecting them during the off-season or campaign pause.
  3. If you’re moving sites completely and not just changing a couple of pages, you should expect 301 redirects to take even longer to be recognized by search engines. You’ll want to monitor webmaster tools accounts closely from launch and the first four weeks, dependent on traffic to your site. You’ll want to check it regularly thought as a best practice.
  4. Also, pay attention to whether or not you have control over your domain both with and without the “www” after the “http://”. It’s best to set one to redirect to the other. Otherwise, you won’t see any statistics on people accessing the site from the alternative version. There are many free tools you can use to check for this on the web such as this one.

Resources

No need to feel overwhelmed with this concept. There are tons of other resources that can help you get a solid understanding of 301 redirects and SEO:

Check out this in-depth video by Google’s Matt Cutts on permanent 301 redirects.

Moz also has a great article on 301 redirects and SEO.

HubSpot offers tips on how to avoid SEO pitfalls with 301 redirects in this post as well.

If you have any questions about 301 redirects and SEO that you can’t find the answer to in these resources, we’re always here to help. Give us a call at (818) 806-3868 or shoot us an email anytime.