Archives for July 2013

Understanding Social Signals In Relation to Search Engine Optimization

Social media are now considered as one of the most effective SEO strategies that can be used by online businessmen for their website in generating traffic. That fact has already been long proven, and with almost all people always spending their time more than one hour on networking sites, the more it became possible for it to help in generating traffic. However, no matter how helpful social media is, it can also be as that damaging. That is why it became so much for SEO experts to understand the ways on how they can fully take advantage on several social signals from networking sites. Due to the said fact, SEO experts will be able to control it for their website to gain authority not for it t be taken away.

Social signals are the relevant signals that you have to create through gaining the attention of your target audience. These signals must be relevant to your target audience because that is the only way that you can gain their attention. The more relevant your social signals are the more you will also earn your audience’s attention, which means that the greater your audience will also be.  There are three aspects of social signals that you have to understand so as for you to earn audience and for your website to be optimized. These are:

•     Social Signals and Authority or Influence – This is one of the aspects that you have to understand and ensure to earn your audience’ attention. In this case, once you create a profile for your business in a social networking site, your main purpose will be is to earn plenty of followers. The only way for you to make that happen is to give your followers reasons in interacting with the contents on your business profile regularly.

•     User Engagement as Social Signals. Those social media profiles that are using effective SEO strategies are also the one that are often obtaining higher SERP results. That is made possible because of the number of users who became engaged on the contents in their profile. That only means that the social media profile has more content interaction and more relevant information that can be considered by search engine spiders.

•     Versatile SEO Contents. SEO contents must not only be engaged and shared with by your followers. It must be ensured that the SEO contents will be shared for several times. That is why it is essential that the content can also be shared on other media platforms not just in the place that it was originally posted. When the SEO contents are shared by more people, then it will be considered by the search spiders as more helpful and influential.

These are social signals that you have to understand, and consider for your website or profile to be optimized. That is because it is not just about getting your users to Follow and Like your profile. It is also about getting your users and visitors engaged on the contents that your profile has.

What Are Social Signals?

Simply put – a social signal is a link from someone’s social networking profile to your web page. If you were to click on a ‘like’ button on this site, then you have given me a ‘social signal’.

Why do people think they are important?

Reason #1 – When you see a blog post and notice that 100 people decided to share your content across several social networks, you assume that it is content worth reading. You are essentially giving your visitors proof that you are important and an authority in this space.

Reason #2– Google is increasingly rewarding websites for their social signals. Every single time Google updates its search algorithm it seems to add more weighting to them.

I put Google to the test

I always knew that these kinds of links should be in the overall link building strategy, but I have never isolated it. So I drew up the following experiment:

  1. I took a couple of highly competitive keywords (Phoenix web design & Websites for small businesses)
  2. I steadily (over a month) built an additional 30 social signals to each page.
  3. I reviewed the results.

Keyword: Websites for small business

I have a screen shot below showing what happened to the rankings. At first, nothing really happened. Then all of the sudden it shot from 37th to 7th in the rankings. Since then it has climbed up to 5th.

Websites for small businesses ranking report

Here is an image of the social signals it got:

Websites for small businesses blog post

Here is my Google ranking:

Websites for small businesses Google ranking

Keyword: Phoenix Web Design

I didn’t really expect anything to happen with this keyword, because it is VERY competitive. I will get to the top of Google for this eventually, but it’ll should take another 6-7 months. So what happened? Well, it went from 37th to 18thin the rankings. That might not seem like much, but for a keyword like this jumping a full 2 pages it is a huge deal. Especially since I only built 30 social signals to it.

Phoenix web design ranking report

Here is my Google ranking: Phoenix web design google ranking

So do Social Signals work for SEO or not?

Like I said previously, everyone ‘seems’ to know they make a difference, but I had no idea they would make such a big difference in such a short period of time. To think that just 30 social signals will boost your rankings for such competitive keywords is definitely an eye opener for me.

So to receive your 200 FREE social signals, try our 7 day trial by clicking HERE.

– adapted from an article by Peter Visser (www.socialmediatoday.com)

Search Engine Optimisation Services

What is SEO? If you are new to the internet or still trying to get your head around making a search engine friendly website, then here is a brief introduction to what search engine engine optimisation services do.

SEO is the process of improving the  visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine‘s search results. The higher the ranking on the search results page, the more visitors it will receive .

SEO services then, consider how search engines operate, what people are searching for, the words typed into search engines (like Google) and which search engines are preferred by their targeted audience.

SEO services  work with a website to remove barriers to how a search engines views your website, and make it more accessible to the search engines. Promoting a site to increase the number of backlinks, or inbound links, is an SEO tactic.

8 Essentials When Optimising Your Site

Basic search engine optimization (SEO) is fundamental. SEO will help you position your website properly to be found at the most critical points in the buying process, or when people need your site.

What are search engines looking for? How can you build your website in a way that will please both your visitors/customers, as well as Google, Bing, and other search engines? Most importantly, how can SEO help your web presence become more profitable?

What is SEO?

The purpose of SEO is to:

  • Create a great, seamless user experience.
  • Communicate to the search engines your intentions so they can recommend your website for relevant searches.

1. Your Website is Like a Cake

think-of-your-site-like-a-cake

Your links, paid search, and social media acts like the icing, but your content, information, content management system, and infrastructure act as the sugar and makes the cake. Without it, your cake is tasteless, boring, and gets thrown in the trash.

theyre-both-cakes-right

2. What Search Engines Are Looking For

Search engines want to do their jobs as best as possible by referring users to websites and content that is the most relevant to what the user is looking for. So how is relevancy determined?

  • Content: Is determined by the theme that is being given, the text on the page, and the titles and descriptions that are given.
  • Performance: How fast is your site and does it work properly?
  • Authority: Does your site have good enough content to link to or do other authoritative sites use your website as a reference or cite the information that’s available?
  • User Experience: How does the site look? Is it easy to navigate around? Does it look safe? Does it have a high bounce rate?

3. What Search Engines Are NOT Looking For

Search engine spiders only have a certain amount of data storage, so if you’re performing shady tactics or trying to trick them, chances are you’re going to hurt yourself in the long run. Items the search engines don’t want are:

  • Keyword Stuffing: Overuse of keywords on your pages.
  • Purchased Links: Buying links will get you nowhere when it comes to SEO, so be warned.
  • Poor User Experience: Make it easy for the user to get around. Too many ads and making it too difficult for people to find content they’re looking for will only increase your bounce rate. If you know your bounce rate it will help determine other information about your site. For example, if it’s 80 percent or higher and you have content on your website, chances are something is wrong.

4. Know Your Business Model

While this is pretty obvious, so many people tend to not sit down and just focus on what their main goals are. Some questions you need to ask yourself are:

  • What defines a conversion for you?
  • Are you selling eyeballs (impressions) or what people click on?
  • What are your goals?
  • Do you know your assets and liabilities?

5. Don’t Forget to Optimize for Multi-Channels

multichannel-optimization

Keyword strategy is not only important, but should extend to other off-site platforms, which is why you should also be thinking about multi-channel optimization. These multi-channel platforms include:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Email
  • Offline, such as radio and TV ads

Being consistent with keyword phrases within these platforms will not only help your branding efforts, but also train users to use specific phrases you’re optimizing for.

6. Be Consistent With Domain Names

Domain naming is so important to your overall foundation, so as a best practice you’re better off using sub-directory root domains (example.com/awesome) versus sub-domains (awesome.example.com). Some other best practices with domain names are:

  • Consistent Domains: If you type in www.example.com, but then you type in just example.com and the “www” does not redirect to www.example.com, that means the search engines are seeing two different sites. This isn’t effective for your overall SEO efforts as it will dilute your inbound links, as external sites will be linking to www.example.com and example.com.
  • Keep it Old School: Old domains are better than new ones, but if you’re buying an old domain, make sure that the previous owner didn’t do anything shady to cause the domain to get penalized.
  • Keywords in URL: Having keywords you’re trying to rank for in your domain will only help your overall efforts.

7. Optimizing for Different Types of Results

In addition to optimizing for the desktop experience, make sure to focus on mobile and tablet optimization as well as other media.

  • Create rich media content like video, as it’s easier to get a video to rank on the first page than it is to get a plain text page to rank.
  • Optimize your non-text content so search engines can see it. If your site uses Flash or PDFs, make sure you read up on the latest best practices so search engines can crawl that content and give your site credit for it.

8. Focus on Your Meta Data Too

Your content on your site should have title tags and meta descriptions.

  • Meta keywords are pretty much ignored by search engines nowadays, but if you still use them, make sure it talks specifically to that page and that it is also formatted correctly.
  • Your meta description should be unique and also speak to that specific page. Duplicate meta descriptions from page to page will not get you anywhere.

Title tags should also be unique! Think your title as a 4-8 word ad, so do your best to entice the reader so they want to click and read more.

Summary

You should always keep SEO in the forefront of your mind, and always follow best practices. Skipping the basics of SEO will only leave your site’s foundation a mess and prevent you from fully maximizing revenue opportunities.

by Victoria Edwards

What Steps Should Be Taken To Improve Your Website’s Social Signals

Similar to SEO, there are two core elements to social media: onsite and offsite. In order to properly establish and grow a social media campaign, both elements must be present and refined.

Onsite elements include:

  • Share buttons (like, recommend, tweet, bookmark, etc.)
  • Connect buttons (Like a Facebook page, Follow on Twitter, Follow on LinkedIn, etc.)
  • A blog

Offsite elements include:

  • Facebook page
  • Twitter account
  • LinkedIn company page
  • Pinterest account
  • Youtube account
  • Guest blog posting
  • Other social media platforms

– adapted from an article by Jason DeMers

How To Create A Potent Marketing Campaign

 strategy-execution-success

How much time and money should a business invest in social media?

If this is the first question you’re asking, it’s the wrong one. If you’re attempting to develop a successful strategic marketing plan, then it’s imperative to stand back, and re-evaluate two things. Your:

  • Marketing Plan
  • Content Development Plan

Re-evaluating these higher-level items will show you how social media, SEO, analytics, blogging, and content development can work together to aid in online marketing success.

The main thing that successful businesses do can be summed up in one word: Plan. Failing to plan will only prevent you from executing a strategy, as you will be too busy reacting to what is wrong.

Asking the Right Questions

Before you start, you must make sure you know the answers to two critical questions about your business:

  1. How do you make money as a company?
  2. Why do you make money in those ways?

Answering these questions will help you define proper goals while also helping you to define your intentions and goals within social media.

How Do You Organize Your Online Marketing?

This is bigger than just social media, so you’ve got to outline how all channels can effectively work together to get your message across successfully. Four ways to organize your message are:

  • Narrative: Narrative is creating the story around your brand or product that will best communicate with your consumers.
  • Development: Once you have your story outlined, the next thing is to develop the right message and then develop it to the right people in the way they wish to digest the content.
  • Interaction: Talks about how will you interact with your consumers across all platforms. Blogging, email and social media are all different mediums and should be messaging should be unique to those platforms
  • Planning: Developing content calendars and looking at trends should be a part of your marketing activities. This is done so can you deliver timely content to your consumer when that topic or idea is in the top of mind.

Blogging Benefits

Blogs (if you’re doing it right) are a more active type of medium versus your website, as the messaging on your website tends to be more static and doesn’t get updated as often.

Many benefits come about from utilizing blogging as a marketing medium. Not only do you have control over the message and data, but it also has benefits from an SEO perspective.

Using your blog to promote calls to action and build your email list is another great benefit for having a blog. Several other benefits include:

  • Increase your SEO efforts
  • Build for Long-Tail Content
  • Community and Market Education
  • Communicate High Trust Content
  • Build Lists, Conversions and Reach
  • Build Brand Value and Equity

Email Benefits

Email is another marketing channel that people don’t tend to really focus on. Email is a great way to segment your customers and market directly to their interests, but you must build the lists first.

Capturing emails within your blog is a great conversion goal you can use. Email consumption is increasing overall and mobile devices are part of this occurrence, as most people primarily use their mobile devices to check their email.

Another reason email marketing is a great is that’s where a lot of your consumers are hanging out, especially first thing in the morning.

Social Media Tips & Facts

Bailey also mentioned that while social media is a great addition to your marketing plan, it should be considered like all other marketing efforts. Each site is used differently and not all are alike.

Here are some tips and facts around various platforms:

YouTube

  • It’s portable. You can create a video, upload it, then promote it easily to other platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
  • It helps out with search engine optimization. Since YouTube is owned by Google, creating video content and optimizing it for terms you wish to rank for, will only help your search efforts. Your YouTube video will have a better chance of being ranked at the top of the page (provided it’s properly optimized) versus your website.

Pinterest

  • Pinterest is a good social media platform, but once again isn’t for everyone. The ideal Pinterest strategy is highly visual and highly segmented.
  • Efforts must be specific and be about a certain topic for it to be successful.

Linkedin

  • If you’re in B2B, then you should be doing LinkedIn.
  • Linkedin is the most affluent membership as the users either have jobs or are looking for jobs.

Twitter

  • Twitter is a great place to get opinions about your brand from your followers.
  • Great way to get ideas from your consumers and discover what they want to hear about.
  • Immediacy is a huge benefit that comes with this platform.

Facebook

  • It’s about the conversation so let your consumer’s voice be heard.
  • Ask them to share their stories, photos, and opinions to gain insight into what they want.

4 Tips for the Planning Phase

The more you plan your marketing efforts, the only more success you will have. Here are four tips Bailey shared with the planning phase for marketing strategies.

  1. Rely on your SEOs: Get keywords from that that people are looking for to get to your site or blog. Search data is more than trying to rank but getting ideas for what people want to know.
  2. Build a long-term and daily content plan.
    • Long-Term Content Plan: Use Google Trends to compare products and primary searches.
    • Daily Content Plan: What trend terms are big the past 7 days and figure out what is trending right now that your company can take advantage of.
  3. Create a publishing schedule so you can see what content is going live when. The key is to plan your marketing according to your content.
  4. Measure your efforts to see what was successful and learn to make more money.

If you put effort into planning your marketing and content strategy you will have a higher success rate and also continue to execute based on a strategy, versus reacting to what is wrong due to lack of organization.

– by Victoria Edwards