Business owners tend to think about search engine optimization (SEO) in terms of it either “working” or “not working.” That is, they believe you either dominate on Google or can’t be found anywhere in the first twenty pages of the search listings.
It’s understandable that someone looking at SEO from the outside might take this view, especially if you aren’t used to getting traffic from search engines. However, the reality is most marketers move through a progression of SEO effectiveness until they either stop trying or run into a competitor who was working harder than they are.
To give you a sense of what that progression looks like, let’s look at the five typical stages of a profitable SEO campaign…
Continue reading “The 5 Stages of SEO Effectiveness”
Have you ever gone to a website and realized it’s taking ages to come online? Don’t you hate that?
As it turns out, your visitors hate that too. Even worse, their definition of “ages” might be significantly shorter than yours. Surveys and user behavior studies suggest that you have around three seconds to interest someone in your website before they click away or visit another search result. If your website takes longer than that to simply load, your chance of winning a customer could be gone before it ever materialized.
You might be wondering, then, why some business websites are so slow in the first place. Let’s look at a few of the most common reasons…
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Amongst business owners and marketing executives, search engine optimization (or SEO) is like a professional sport. Although most decision-makers haven’t done much content writing or technical HTML work, they stay up-to-date on the latest trends and ranking on Google algorithm shifts. They become armchair quarterbacks of search marketing.
That’s generally a good thing. Anyone who has a vested interest in helping their business grow should know what SEO and ranking on Google are all about. However, there is a downside to the intense interest they have and search. Namely that new clients come to companies like ours looking for complicated answers to simple problems.
The details of the search engine optimization campaign are important. However, they only come into play once you cover the basics. To help illustrate what we mean, let’s look at a few Google ranking factors…
Continue reading “Why you Probably Aren’t Ranking on Google”
Amazing as it might seem, we sometimes meet with business owners and marketing managers who tell us they don’t have the time or patience for social media marketing. They are either overwhelmed with other tasks, or don’t see a clear benefit to engaging customers and prospects through Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
We can understand this line of thinking. For one thing, most of the people we work with don’t have a lot of free time. And for another, it is harder to use social media to create instant leads than it is to generate business from search engine optimization or pay-per-click ads.
However, that doesn’t mean social media marketing has to be overwhelming, or that it won’t pay off. To help you understand why let’s look at four simple and effective ways you can use your business social media profiles every week…
Continue reading “4 Incredibly Easy Ways to Use Your Company’s Social Media Accounts”
You’ve seen the ads on TV and online that promise that you can create a brand-new website in under an hour for one amazingly low monthly fee. Sounds like a great way to upgrade your business web presence, doesn’t it? Sign up to make your own DIY templated website and visitors will instantly come to your website. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that.
Unfortunately, the bargain probably isn’t all it’s promised up to be.
Don’t get us wrong: DIY website templates certainly have their place. If you are a solo-preneur or the owner of a startup with no budget, then crafting your DIY website is better than not having one. However, if you have an established company, or want to build one, then these services aren’t going to be a good solution.
To help you understand why their low fees for web design and hosting don’t translate into real value, let’s look at five reasons you shouldn’t move your website to a DIY template…
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WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system, with an estimated 172 million websites running on the platform. It’s not hard to see why web designers, business owners, and marketers love it so much—it’s free, flexible, and perfect for promoting content through Google. And, with tens of thousands of plugins available for customization, you can use WordPress to build virtually any kind of web presence you need.
However, that popularity and versatility also come with a small downside: hackers often target WordPress. The sheer number of companies using WordPress encourages them to look for weaknesses that can be exploited again and again.
Does that mean you should be worried about WordPress security? The best answer is probably a mixture of “yes” and “no.” On one hand, you should definitely be thinking about ways to keep your website safe. But on the other hand, it doesn’t mean you have to continually fret over the idea that thieves are going to steal data, mess with your pages, or install malicious software.
If our double-sided answer seems a little confusing, let us explain… Continue reading “Should You be Worried About WordPress Security?”
When designing a website, or putting content together, it can be easy to lose the forest for the trees. There are so many apps, design features, and new technologies available to today’s business owners and web designers that they sometimes lose sight of what they really need to accomplish.
Numerous studies have shown that you only have about three seconds or less to impress a first-time visitor to your website. Many of those in our industry point to that figure and remind clients they need to upgrade their web hosting for faster page delivery. That’s a good suggestion, but clarity matters just as much as speed. In other words, your website needs to get certain ideas across to potential customers very quickly.
Which facts or ideas do they need the most? Let’s look at seven things your business website needs to make crystal clear…
Continue reading “The 7 Things Your Business Website Needs to Make Clear”
Most business owners understand how important search engine optimization (or SEO) is to generating leads and sales from a website. Unfortunately, many are following old tips and best practices that no longer do them much good.
These include stuffing keywords on pages, buying junk links from overseas vendors, and using awkward phrases in marketing copy as a way to draw attention from search spiders. Not only are these techniques outdated, but they can actually work against you and keep customers away from your website, because Google will see them and consider your website to be a low-quality result.
If you worry that you might be following an approach to SEO that no longer works, here are a few things you should know going into 2019…
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This is the time of year when business owners (not to mention those of us in the web design community) naturally tend to look ahead and think about what a new year might mean for the world of online marketing. That’s certainly the case now, as we are fielding more questions than ever about what to expect in 2019.
There are never certain answers to these questions, of course, simply because technology moves quickly and no one can predict the future. However, from our point of view it’s easy to see that the biggest trend to pay attention to is the one that is already taking place right in front of our very eyes. In fact, it’s so significant that it’s easy to take the associated changes for granted.
We are talking, in this case, about the shift towards mobile web usage.
No matter where you look people are on their phones and tablets. Statistics back up what our eyes see, with mobile web usage approaching 60% of all Internet traffic in 2018. There’s no reason to think mobile web users won’t make up and even bigger percentage of the online market in coming years.
Smart marketers are taking big steps to adjust. Here are some of the tools we are using to help our clients to be ready for the continued growth of mobile computing in 2019 and beyond…
Continue reading “The Biggest Trend Driving Online Marketing in 2019 and Beyond”
Given the choice, nearly any business owner or marketer would prefer to have a professional copywriter craft their web content rather than spending hours and hours on the job themselves. However, not every client who needs web design has the budget for a good writer, and in some industries the huge amount of insider knowledge involved in crafting informative pages makes it faster to write than it would be to bring an outsider up to speed.
If you find yourself in either category it doesn’t mean you have to give up on having great web content. You just need to approach the project the same way a professional would. We talked with an experienced web content writer who has written hundreds of across many industries. Here was his advice…
Continue reading “How to Write Web Content Like a Pro”