Many people ask me about doing Search Engine Optimization (SEO) on their website. YCL does only basic SEO using a special plug-in called Yoast SEO. Real, in-depth SEO is done by full-time professionals who follow the trends and watch for algorithm changes daily. Minimum cost per month starts at $500. Those $99/month “specials” are a rip off! Don’t fall for them. Real SEO takes a lot of time and knowledge. This article describes some steps you can take to do some organic work yourself. It’s a worthwhile read to get a sense of what SEO actually entails and why it takes so much time. If you understand some of the basic steps, you’re better able to judge companies that are offering SEO services. YCL is always available to review proposals and give advice also. Often having someone available “who speaks the language” helps simplify the decision making. Regretfully, there are bad people out there who will try to take advantage of your lack of knowledge. Don’t be dazzled by impossible claims to fame!
Google has started partnering with WordPress. This gives all of us WordPress site owners a little lift in Google juice. Read the Article.
- WordPress now represents 59% of all content management software websites. That’s an estimated 1/3 of ALL websites.
- Google is focused on speed! They have made upload speed a priority and an algorithm factor. WordPress sites are speed friendly. You do have to be careful about the size of photos, PDFs or other uploads to your site. But the basic WordPress structure is speed-friendly. (If you’re concerned about the upload time for your site, let’s take a look and see what we can do. We have tools to shrink photo sizes, delete comments, improve the site.)
- Google is prioritizing mobile-friendly sites because so many searches are now done from mobile devices. WordPress and WordPress themes are responsive aka mobile-friendly. (If you have an old WP site, let’s make sure it’s responsive. This is urgent!)
If you aren’t using a WordPress site, let’s talk about your options. Every site needs to take advantage of every opportunity to be Google-friendly.
This is seems to be a popular question for all of our small businesses. When you can’t have both which will you choose? Let’s take a look!
Social Media Benefits: Helps improve brand awareness, builds trust and loyalty, great for driving more engagement, and managing customer service.
SEO Benefits: Builds audience, easy to measure and quantify, targeted-high quality website traffic, and less competition.
Want to learn more about your SEO and social media options? Message Your Computer Lady today to get started!
Bet you didn’t know anything was better than first! That’s what clients talk to me about all the time. This video by Eric Spellmann explains that there is something better and he starts you down the road for get it for yourself.
Eric is great fun to watch! And he knows his business. Watch this video!
I know ya’ll groan and roll your eyes when I get on my Content is King! soapbox. But read this article about Google’s new algorithm and you will join me on the soapbox. Not only are they judging relevant, they’re looking at what is most recent. For most of us, this isn’t a hourly or even daily issue. It could be if I’m a stock broker, head hunter or restaurant. Yet it stresses the importance of keeping your site up to date. It does matter.
PLEASE read this booklet! It truly breaks my heart to see companies building web sites that do them absolutely no good. Sure that FLASH is cool. The programmer had a great time creating it. Yes, that design is hip, modern, … free. But what is the web site doing for you? The attached booklet is from one of the leading online firms who specialize in SEO. (YCL does the basics but SEO is an art form so we refer clients to specialists when needed.) Their simple, clear explanation of SEO and how it works is well worth your time. You will look at your web site with new eyes!
When you build up the traffic on your web site, it’s time to consider selling ads to related companies. Here’s a good article explaining the basics.
Well written article from FireDrum Internet Marketing explaining how a blog on your web site can help with Search Engine Optimization.
I agree with Maureen that a blog is a simple, inexpensive way to add value to your site. Too many companies put up a web site then abandon it. No! The web site should be the hub of all of your marketing efforts. Posting info via a blog makes this easy to do.
What if you aren’t a writer? What to do if that blank screen terrifies you? Use an experienced copywriter (like Your Computer Lady) to take your facts and figures and massage them into an article. As long as you provide the technical expertise, an outside editor can polish up the content.
Interview with Gian Fulgoni, Chairman, comScore, from eMarketer web site
eMarketer: Have we moved away from the click as a proxy for online advertising effectiveness?
Gian Fulgoni: Publishers would be out of their minds to take an average click rate of 0.1% to an advertiser or an agency and say, “Here’s an indication of advertising effectiveness.” It’s not the right metric. It’s a really short-term view of how advertising works as a direct-response-oriented vehicle and not a branding-oriented one.
Let’s say I’m BMW. Do I want to reach a 20-year-old kid who can’t afford to buy a BMW today? The direct response people would say, “No, don’t target with the Internet.” They would target those people who are about to buy a car. That’s one view.
The branding people would say that at some point, the 20-year-old kid is going to buy a BMW or a Lexus or a Mercedes, so let’s make sure that he has the BMW brand value and equity in his head. Otherwise, he’s going to buy a Mercedes or a Lexus.
For obvious reasons we tend to focus a lot on keywords and ad copy. They’re vital to getting search users to click on your ads. But once they have clicked, then what? Hopefully, they’re A) in a buyin’ mood and B) they’ve actually come to the right place.
You can help promote both of these results by optimizing your landing pages. Here are nine tips to help get your leads to stick around and buy from you:
1. Connect the search experience to the landing page experience.
Wherever possible, use the same language on your landing pages as you do in your ads. It’s a real disconnect when you click on an ad that reads, “Online Conversion Rate Counter” only to land on a page selling a “Conversion Calculating Service.”
2. Integrate your landing page into your site.
Some advertisers make the mistake of building stand-alone landing pages for certain keywords that are more-or-less “divorced” from the rest of their sites. This can make your business seem sketchy to potential customers, who you want to be able to trust you with their credit card info. A consistent experience across all of your pages and product offerings can help create a more convincing experience. (More on this below.)
3. Gain their trust.
Use trusted, third-party security providers and make sure their badges and icons are clearly visible.
4. Offer tips and suggestions.
How can potential customers best use the product? If you’re selling steaks, offer a steak au poivre recipe. There’s a potential for up- and cross-sell here, as well. Perhaps monsieur would enjoy a nice bottle of cabernet sauvignon with his tender, juicy filet mignon, oui? Just don’t go crazy with it, mon ami. (See 5 and 6, below.)
5. Stay on target.
If your ad specifies John Deere tractors, make sure all of your tractors for sale on that page are John Deere tractors. In other words, if I had been looking for Caterpillar bulldozers I’d have clicked on an ad for them instead.
6. Cut the clutter.
Your landing page should not be too generic and cluttered. This ties in with the tip above. If your ad is for discount wholesale 7Up, don’t clutter the page up with other un-colas. This helps keep the lead focused.
7. Ban the bling.
Your landing page should be cleanly and attractively designed, but avoid distractions like music or other audio, animations and revolving logos. These can distract prospective customers from their purpose, which is to buy the product or service that they need, hopefully from you. Again, keep ‘em focused on the task.
8. Give them something to do.
A little interactivity can help keep people engaged. For some products, especially big-ticket items, things like video testimonials and 360-degree tours may be good sales aids. Just let customers decide whether or not they want to view them by giving them control. And remember Tip 7: Keep the bling to a minimum.
9. Write right.
Language counts. Think of your landing page as a salesperson in a showroom. What would a salesperson say to a prospect to help “get to yes?” Here are a few classic pointers:
- Make sure that your headers and subheads are clear and direct.
- Deliver your value proposition right away.
- Offer a persuasive message near the call-to-action—You know: “Don’t be left out of this amazing offer,” etc.
- Be nice with your call-to-action copy—”Submit” and “Buy Now” can sound like orders and put some people off. “Try it Now” sounds nicer.
For more tips on landing page optimization, visit this page in our Help Center.
from the Yahoo Search Marketing Blog