When it comes to digital marketing, people immediately think of search engine optimization (SEO) for more traffic, leads and ultimately sales. Optimizing your content according to SEO principles results in your website showing up more often in search results. But, it is often spoken about in hushed and revered tones because Google (and other search engines) update SEO algorithms notoriously often. (According to those in the know, Google makes more than 500 changes over the course of a year.)
As a small business owner, bang for your buck is essential. Here are 6 tips to boost your local online marketing with sound SEO practices:
The definitive way to keep Google and other search engines happy is to deliver authoritative, evergreen content. It will improve your search engine optimization because Google looks for pages that contain top-quality, pertinent information about the searcher’s query. The bonus is that quality content is what your current and future customers are going to share.
Be a Brainiac
Google’s RankBrain is part of the algorithm which infers how users find pages that do not have the exact words that they searched for. Using compound, multi-word keywords (long- and medium-tail keywords) helps RankBrain link you to thousands of similar keywords.
Be Strategic about Keyword Optimization
Using your keyword list in your site’s content needs to be done properly. Ideally, each webpage should target a core term and a collection of related terms. However, for the sake of a better user experience (which in turn leads to longer time spent on your pages and increased social sharing and links to you), the content needs to flow naturally.
Be Video Savvy
Digital marketing involves charming existing clients and new leads so that you can develop faithful relationships with them. Video ticks both these boxes because:
- Video content makes for good user engagement.
- It shows you value their time – a one-minute video is far easier to absorb than a 300-word article.
- Bonus: video is a great SEO tool when you integrate them into the rest of your content, use titles and descriptions to make them searchable and enhance their audio and visual quality.
How people perceive your business can make or break you. A well-optimized Google My Business listing gives you a measure of control in managing your online reputation, while at the same time increases your chances of appearing in Google features like the Local Pack and Maps.
Make sure that key information is clearly marked and easy to find:
- Tell page visitors how they should go about doing business with you – call, pop in or email for additional info.
- Display your location and operating hours.
- Offer a phone number, email, social media messaging options, and/or live chat.
Ask the Experts
Are you interested in digital marketing methods and strategies to boost your status and help you generate new leads? The Digital Marketing People (a digital marketing agency) offers a range of internet marketing techniques – including local SEO and lead solutions – that can be customized for your business. For more information, contact us today.
In the world of digital marketing, having a high Google ranking has always been a primary goal.
What is Google Ranking?
When a user; whether it is a researcher or a potential mega-spending client; types in a keyword or a phrase for Google to search, the position in which your website is listed in the search engine result pages (SERPs) is called your Google keyword ranking.
Because most search results show ten listings per page, a ranking of 1 means you are at the top of the list, while a ranking of 11 means you are on the second page. The higher your position on a SERP, the more organic traffic your webpage should get, which is why SEO has been such a mainstay of small business marketing.
Although Google’s algorithms change regularly, these are some factors that will up your ranking:
Behind the Scenes
When using Google, Bing and so on, the loading speed of your pages is estimated by search engine “spiders” based on the HTML code of your site. Chrome user data adds to the accuracy when Chrome is the search engine of choice. The faster, the better.
The old adage that “content is king” still holds true as there are no shortcuts and appropriate content will always be Google’s friend. However, keeping your content up to date is important as the indexing infrastructure, Google Caffeine, values recently published content.
Also, remember to regard your images as a type of content. By optimizing them with their file name, alt text, title, description and captions, you are sending relevancy signals to Google’s bots.
According to Google’s John Mueller, “Having a keyword that appears in the first 100 words of a page’s content is correlated to first page Google rankings, and having your keyword(s) appear as a subheading tag in HTML help us to understand the structure of the page.”
But don’t be tempted to over stuff your content with keywords – see point above!
The Digital Marketing People
For someone just starting out, finding the correct SEO services can be a hugely daunting task. It doesn’t have to be that way though. SEO experts use many different kinds of search engine optimization software packages to highlight which areas of your website need improvement – so that you can be ensured of your best ranking possible – be it local SEO or organic SEO.
One of the best SEO marketing tips we can give you is that you acquire the right SEO services available to you. Below, we have put together a list of some of the best SEO services and keyword tracking tools used by SEO experts today. Not all of them need to be used, but rather, you need to find out what works best for you.
Ahrefs: SEO Keyword Tool
Possibly one of the most recommended SEO tools online, Ahrefs comes in second to Google as one of the largest website crawlers on the internet today.
Google Search Console: Top SEO Tool
All that is needed to use this tool is proof of having your own website and it’s offered for free for you to monitor and report on your website’s presence in Google’s search results.
SEMRush: Marketing SEO Tools
Your rankings and changes to them, as well as new ranking opportunities, are easily assessed using this tool. If it’s comparing your website to your competitors’ websites that interest you, then this is one of the most popular features SEMRush has to offer through simple domain versus domain analysis.
KWFinder: SEO Keyword Tool
Long-tail keywords usually have a low level of competition on webpages, and this tool not only finds them, but also offers similar keywords to help improve your rankings further.
Moz: SEO Software
If it’s an educated response to a question you might be asking then Moz is the right tool for you as it has a chat portal where you can ask any questions you might have in SEO related topics.
Ubersuggest: Keyword Tracking Tool
If you are interested in whether your keyword is worth targeting and just how competitive it is, Ubersuggest shows the top ranking SERPs for your keywords and the reasons for it.
Answer The Public: Free SEO Tools
This tool is first of all free and a great way to come up with competitive content for your e-commerce blog or webpage surrounding a few specific keywords or phrases.
SpyFu: Free SEO Tools
SpyFu is an extremely useful tool for tracking keywords as well as how many times it gets used in a month and how effective it is.
These are just a few (and most popular) of the SEO tools used by leading SEO experts to increase traffic to your webpage and vastly improve your search engine optimization.
If you want to get traffic to your website, one of the best things you can do is check out what your competitors are doing to get traffic to their website. SEO competitor analysis is one of the SEO services that we offer here at The Digital Marketing People. Here is how we do it:
Find Your Competitors
You may already have a good idea of who your competitors are in the industry, but there may be a few that you weren’t even aware of. Use Google to search for your products or services and list the competitor websites that show up, especially to identify your local competitors. Use Ahrefs or SEMRush to find your closest online competitors by searching for competing domains. These tools take all the guesswork out of the equation and make it easy to see how well you compare against your online competitors.
Competitor Strengths and Weaknesses
Once you have found your competitors using Ahrefs or SEMRush, just drill down further into their web presence and review how their SEO has been performing. You can plot their information over the past 24 months to uncover:
- Their estimated budget that was spent on search advertising,
- The specific months when they engaged in search engine advertising,
- The keywords they targeted and the ad copy they used to attract search engine visitors, and
- Their SEO traffic volume over time – this metric tells you whether they are active with SEO.
Reviewing the above and other metrics will highlight their strengths and weaknesses, which is particularly helpful when you plot them against your website and other competitors.
Strategies Used by Competitors
The way in which we work out a competitor’s digital marketing strategy is to look at whether they use all or any of the below tactics to generate website traffic:
- AdWords – the use of AdWords can reveal that they are getting an ROI on their budget spend. Drill down further into the AdWords to uncover which keywords are their best performers and use this information to plan your AdWords campaign. This way, you can make sure your AdWords campaigns are running optimally right from the start.
- Keywords – the keywords that a website ranks for can reveal a lot about a competitor’s strategy. All you need to do is download their top 100 Google ranking results and filter and categorize them as follows:
- Branded keywords and the traffic they generate will show you the strength of the brand.
- The non-branded keyword traffic will be for their products or services. The value of a visitor that comes to your website by typing in a non-branded keyword search is that they are now exposed to your brand, and probably for the first time.
- Intention or commercial keywords are keywords that include a modifier such as bargain, best, buy, brand name, compare, coupon, discount, for men/women, guide to, low price/cost, on sale, buy online and other similar modifiers. If a website ranks for these modifier keywords, then they are targeting the bottom of the marketing funnel.
Users/searchers should have a seamless experience on your website. To highlight how important the user experience is to Google, here’s a quote from John Meuller, who is the head webmaster trends analyst at Google:
“I see lots and lots of SEO blogs talking about user experience, which I think is a great thing to focus on as well. Because that essentially focuses on what we are trying to look at. We want to rank content that is useful for them (Google Search users) and if your content is really useful for them, then we want to rank it.”
The main takeaway is that Google values the user experience. So, how do you go about improving the user experience on your website? It all starts with technical SEO. And, there are two parts to technical SEO that you need to understand:
- There are high-impact technical issues, and
- There are low-impact technical issues.
According to HubSpot, a 1-second delay in website loading speed can reduce conversions by 7%. Increasing your website loading speed, however, can increase conversions. Mozilla Firefox reduced their average loading time by 2,2 seconds, which increased their downloads by 15,4%. That is a massive increase for a website like Firefox, which gets a ton of downloads already.
At the very minimum, you should get your website’s loading speed to 3 seconds or less. The first thing you should do is benchmark your site’s loading speed. You can go to tools.pingdom.com and enter your URL. It is a good idea to run your site through Pingdom from at least three different locations so that you can get an average loading speed.
There are countless resources online on how to improve your website’s loading speed. But, if there is one thing that determines how quickly your website loads, it is your web hosting. You can make all kinds of micro changes to try to improve your website’s loading speed, but nothing will make a bigger difference than your web host.
Most of the people who follow this blog have already mastered other areas of SEO, such as link-building, on-page and off-page optimization and they have implemented a responsive web design. It’s time to start focusing on the user experience. Contact The Digital Marketing People for small business marketing today.
Online reputation management, when combined with SEO, is a powerful tool that businesses can use to ensure their potential clients and stakeholders get the right information about their business when they do research online. Many times, people only contact digital marketing experts for online reputation management when something goes wrong.
Events that can trigger a reputational risk include poor reviews. Sometimes the negative feedback is legitimate, other times the source can be a malicious attack from competitors. As everyone knows, when something is posted online, it is virtually impossible to remove. Your best bet is to focus on how you can use the power of SEO to improve your own reputation online.
If you type your company name into Google, what pops up? You will likely see a Google Maps result, links to your website, as well as links to your social media profiles. If a negative review has been posted on an authoritative website, such as TripAdvisor or Hello Peter, it may also appear on the first page of Google’s search results.
Instead of trying to get the website to take down the unflattering feedback, your best bet is to create high-quality content that can outrank the negative review. You should also consider posting a response to the complainant and addressing their concern.
What type of content should you post if you want to outrank bad PR? Here are a few options:
- A how-to blog post
- A guest blog on a popular website in your industry
- A white paper
- A YouTube tutorial
Make sure that the content you create is not only professionally written, helpful and engaging, but that it is optimized for the right keywords. Your company’s name, as well as any people within your business who are mentioned online, should be included in the new content you are creating for online reputation management purposes. Work with a digital marketing agency to make sure you are targeting the correct keywords. You can also use Google Reviews to write reviews and encourage your clients to do the same.
Local SEO has changed a lot over the past few years, and many people still have a lot of misconceptions about this topic. In 2015, Google changed their rankings in the map pack from 7 to 3. While it is now easier to get into the map pack, we also have to put in a little more effort when it comes to generalized SEO. To be found in the map pack, you need to focus on links and organic SEO.
In 2016, Google deployed its Possum update, which made it much more important for users to be close to their location. In a nutshell: the customized results that you see in the map back are based on your proximity, not just how well your SEO is doing.
Today, a big part of local SEO revolves around links and local content, so don’t fret if a potential client is trying to find you but isn’t actually nearby. If you do a search in Google, the top spot is the map pack, followed by directory listings, followed by organic search results.
Your top priority is your generalized SEO. Making sure you have high-quality inbound links, blog content and reviews are already a step in the right direction. The directory listings refer to websites like TripAdvisor and Yelp. Contrary to popular belief, directory listings and reviews don’t necessarily hold as much weight as the map pack and organic search results.
The organic search results under the directory listings is where the old school, tried and tested link building and SEO techniques can come in. When Google sees you are regularly updating your website with blog content and that authoritative websites are linking to your content, you will be able to sustainably increase your organic search results.
Lavish events, endless PPC digital marketing, free gifts – these marketing strategies sound fool-proof… But, what if you have just opened the doors of your new business and simply don’t have the budget to pull them off? Unless you started off with a number of enthusiastic investors, this will almost certainly be the case! Luckily, there are a few ways to market your start-up that won’t cost you a fortune.
Organic Digital Marketing
While spending a little on your digital marketing is sure to be of benefit, doing so definitely isn’t necessary. You can achieve impressive results without spending a cent! The secret is to focus on the SEO of your website, creating interesting and original content (content marketing) and engaging with your social following via social media at any and every chance you get.
Rely on Word of Mouth
Ask all of your friends and relatives to spread the word about your business in any way they can. Share information about it on social media, speak about it at parties and gatherings – you’ll be amazed to discover that good news really does travel fast!
Consider Guest Posting
One of the best ways to attract attention to your start-up is to become a guest poster on another blogger’s site. Just make sure that the blogger is relevant to your industry and that their audience consists of those who may be potential clients. This may require a bit of effort on your part, but it can lead to incredible exposure if you manage to get it right.
When you’re looking for affordable digital marketing to help leverage your start-up, you need not to look any further than The Digital Marketing People. We specialize in small business marketing and SEO. Contact us today for a quote.
Location marketing is an essential form of Search Engine Optimization needed if your business operates in a certain area. Local SEO ensures that users in your area or users who are searching for your service or product in your area land up on your site. The leaders in SEO services, The Digital Marketing People have created this list of local marketing tips to ensure you get the best results for your local SEO campaign:
Get Your Google My Business Up And Running
Whether you have a brick and mortar store or a strictly online e-commerce store, it is imperative that you create an online presence. Google My Business allows for you to upload your store details to the Google-sphere and lets your product or service be indexed online and ready to show when someone searches for it in your area. If you are a physical store, ensure you have the store contact details on your page as opposed to just a contact form.
Once you have indexed your store, it is important to understand who and where you want your targeting to be. Often times it can be a radius around your store, but it can be a particular area, demographic or route that you take. Understanding where your target audience lies, ensures you can pinpoint target them.
Ensure that you engage in social media and get reviews. The more active your site, page or review page is, the higher you will be indexed and shown when people are searching in your area. Get customers to leave a review. Yelp and Google Reviews are both extremely important in raising the relevancy of your page.
The Digital Marketing People are the industry leaders in SEO services. If you need your business to have the most impressive online presence in your area, then you need local SEO. For more information, contact us today!
A social media marketing strategy can be a great way to engage with your target audience and boost brand awareness. However, if you are not leveraging your social efforts for your broader digital strategy, then you are missing a great opportunity.
A comprehensive search engine optimization (SEO) strategy has many changeable parts. While keyword research and content creating are some of the core pillars to SEO, so are backlinks. Earning high-quality backlinks from other websites can help you succeed in your goal of dominating Google’s search results, whereas spammy link strategies will do you more harm than good.
One social strategy that you could incorporate into your SEO plan is to share your content on websites such as StumbleUpon, Reddit and Delicious. These sites are very popular, which means that not only will your content be read by people on the site, but also you can link back to your own online assets to boost your SEO strategy.
Another option is to use your keywords in updates when posting to social sites. An interior decorator in Wyoming, for example, will want to post content with these keywords on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram in case people are searching for these search terms on the site. Social media sites have high domain authority. One simply has to type in a person’s name on Google to see that their social media profiles will rank very highly. Even if you have determined that LinkedIn, for example, will not be part of your company’s SEO strategy, you can still benefit from creating a company page with your main keywords on the site.