To help keep you up-to-date with the latest news and ideas from the industry, we have compiled the latest articles from industry leaders and corporate blogs. New content is pulled hourly from each blog's RSS feed. The article links will take you directly to the related blog.
Friday February 22, 2013 @ 1:00PM EST / 10AM PST
Common Mistakes & Best Practices for Successful Pay-Per-Click Marketing
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Did you "try Google AdWords" and feel like you threw your money away, with nothing to show? It's not so easy, is it? Here is a step-by-step Webinar that shows where the pitfalls are, and what it takes to set it up and do it right.
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Friday February 22, 2013 @ 1:00PM EST / 10AM PST
Another great testimonial from one of my many satisfied clients. Thanks Diane!
I have had the honor of having Ryan Whitten as my Marketing Manager for my SEO Campaign. Ryan has gone above and beyond the call of duty to assist me.
His professionalism and committed service has been a breath of fresh air. He always takes extra time to explain the technicalities of my SEO Campaign, and consistently makes sure that I thoroughly understand every aspect. I have witnessed my rankings quickly increase, which has brought more visitors to my site, as well as more clients for my practice.
I have recommended iPage, and specifically Ryan, to my colleagues who would like their site to receive more traffic, resulting in more business.
Diane Larson Seattle City Reiki
Here is another testimonial from one of my happy customers!
In the spring of 2012, members of our psychiatric clinic decided that it was time to retain a new SEO provider. Prior to that date, we were served by a major software company, with unsatisfactory results.
We explored several SEO providers, and eventually selected SEO Gears based on the company's reputation, the quality of its responses to our questions and the demeanor that the SEO Gears staff exhibited during our courtship period. The SEO Gears team, headed by Pedro Jané, Marketing Program Manager, has been knowledgeable, informative, courteous and supportive. It has been a pleasure.
Further, I am pleased to say that the results of our first phase of implementation have been very positive and cost effective. We are looking forward to acquiring more of SEO Gears' services and accelerating our marketing activities with this company.
When I went to FatCow for hosting, I wanted my website, The Lazy Gardener, to be in the top 3 rankings for Landscape Design in Westchester, NY. One successful strategy was buying an SEOGears search engine optimization package through FatCow. My account manager, Mr. Pedro Jane, took me through the various packages and helped me decide which words to optimize for. The results couldn't be better. I am often in first position for the big 3 search engines. Pedro answered my questions by email promptly and was always professional. I would not hesitate to recommend him and FatCow.
Catherine Wachs The Lazy Gardener High-Style, Low-Maintenance Landscape Design & Organic Garden Care Catherine Wachs 646-246-5022 31 Edgewood Avenue Larchmont, NY 10538 http://www.lzgardener.com http://twitter.com/lazygardenerny
Read about how our service was able to increase rankings and generate business from one of our satisfied clients.
"I started a small Microsoft Excel consulting business 13 months ago and after much research decided to create and host my website on iPage. The main reason I went with iPage is that they offered great tools for building my website and appeared to have the strongest SEO support team with SEOGears. A year later I couldn't be happier! "I was able to build a simple yet effective website in only a few days, and while I was building the website Merrill Lawson was assigned to me as my SEO account manager. Merrill walked me through the entire SEO process, starting with target keyword selection, and explained each step along the way. "Shortly after my website went online my SEO campaign started, a couple of weeks later I received my first lead, and within two months I was near the top of the search engines. And whenever I have a question Merrill is just a phone call away. In just one year I have secured almost 20 clients through my website and have all the business that I can handle." Michael Souder MS Excel Solutions www.msexcelsolutions.com
An early Happy New Year from all of us here at SEO Gears! Exciting news….starting in January we’re going to be expanding your SEOGears keyword ranking dashboard to include the past 3 months of results so you can better monitor the success of your SEO campaign. Also, we will no longer be emailing the .PDF version of the ranking reports since all of your SEO campaign data is in the SEOGears portal (rankings, status of your campaign, a list of the tasks we’re working on for you, and your Marketing Manager contact information). Visit your dashboard by clicking the link below to find out more information. Click here to log into your SEOgears account to view graphs just like the one below along with a lot of other valuable information about your marketing campaign. The New Year is an exciting time for us as we enhance our marketing platform and work to provide you with more information and services than ever before via SEO Gears. We look forward to our continued relationship as we work towards helping you, Grow Your Business Online! Sincerely, SEO Gears Staff
We just wrapped up the first webinar for our DIY customers!
If you missed it and want to check it out here is the link to the recording: https://seowebinars.webex.com/seowebinars/lsr.php?AT=pb&SP=EC&rID=6160002&rKey=5be13a3d6305f46a You can Download or Watch the webinar from the link above!
With Google Adwords, you pay Google to be listed along the right hand side of their search results and sometimes along the top of the results in the faint yellow “Ads” section of the Google results. In order to be listed in these results, you bid against your competitors and pay Google a varying amount each time someone clicks on one of your advertisements (as opposed to Organic SEO, where you do not pay for any of the clicks on your site). This amount is based on how much your competitors are currently paying to be listed and can vary from $0.10 - $150 per click based on your industry, though most businesses are able to purchase clicks for only $3-$6 per click. You can view a quick synopsis of Google Adwords below
In order to help you get started with Adwords, most of the hosting companies we've partnered with provide you with a free $100 credit to use on Google Adwords directly inside of your control panel. This credit is good only for new Google Adwords accounts, so if you've used Adwords in the past, you’ll want to make sure you create a new account to use the credit. Once you have created your Adwords account you’ll want to select the right keyword phrases for your campaign with the help of the tools Google provides you. We recommend running multiple Ad Groups within your campaign for different aspects of your business. Each Ad group will allow you to run various advertisements. We recommend between 2-3 different versions of each ad for the best results. This will allow you to monitor which advertisements are doing the best, and cycle your ad copy to ensure that you are getting the very best click through rate at the lowest cost possible.
On average expect to spend between 1-2 hours per week managing your Adwords campaign doing things such as rotating advertisements, checking quality scores, adding negative keywords, and tracking conversion rates from each keyword phrase. With the help and training provided by Google’s team, Adwords takes minutes to learn and years to master. Many of our most successful clients run Adwords simultaneously with their Organic SEO campaign. This allows them to get immediate traffic through Adwords while we work on their Organic ranking to get Free traffic. Once they have earned strong Organic rankings, they then scale back the Adwords campaign accordingly. While we do not offer training on Google Adwords, we can run your Adwords campaign for you for a small maintenance fee and offer discounts if you already have an Organic SEO campaign running. This helps ensure that you are playing the lowest amount possible per click in order to get the most out of your marketing dollar. Feel free to give me a call if you have questions about our managed Adwords campaigns or would like me to get one setup for you.
Many people have heard the term “blog” thrown around but are not exactly sure what a blog is. A blog is simply a website where the owner writes articles, opinions, information, etc on a regular basis. In fact, if you’ve taken advantage of our free starter website, you’re already on a blogging platform called Wordpress! There are a variety of blogging programs available, as well as third party sites to host a blog on. We recommend installing Wordpress on your account for a few reasons.
Most hosting companies we work with have an easy to use 1 Click Wordpress installation that takes care of all the setup and technicalities.
Google knows how to easily read Wordpress and the easier you make a task for Google, the better you should rank.
It’s fairly easy to learn the basics of Wordpress, and if you are struggling many of the hosting companies we partner with offer walkthroughs of the program.
Wordpress has a growing community of users, making it easy to find a local designer if you need extra help on your blog.
Adding content to your blog is considered “blogging” and each piece that you write on the blog is considered a “post”. The most recent post will always be at the top of your blog and each time you add a new post the old posts will be pushed down the page. This is a big reason that blogs have become so popular; it’s very easy for a visitor to view the most up to date information about your business by glancing at the first few posts. Blogs have a slightly different feel to them, and allow for a much more casual form of writing. Where as with your professional site you want to keep your messaging as professional as possible, you can be more relaxed with blog posts. Think of your website as making a presentation to a group of business professionals, and a blog as sitting down for coffee with a perspective new client.
Since the purpose of a blog is to always show the most recent information about your business, it’s important that you make sure to post on the blog at least once every week or two. This will not only keep your customer’s coming back to the site frequently to read your latest posts, but it will also encourage Google to visit the site more often. The more often Google visits your site the quicker it will see changes and affect your ranking. Trying to write a post every week or two may seem like a daunting task at first, but there are a variety of things that you can add to a blog.
Create posts that talk about new features of your business (Are you a bakery that just got a new oven, a plumber that just added a new vehicle to the fleet, etc…)
Write about changes that are occurring in your industry and your opinions on these changes
Offer helpful tips and how to’s
Feature one of your products and go over it’s features
Cover customer success stories
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly having a blog on your site allows you to easily create lots of content on your site. Google likes to see updates to a site and they really like content / information. Adding more posts to your blog in conjunction with your SEO campaign will help you start to pull up under new keyword phrases which will drive even more traffic to your site, helping you get even more for your marketing dollar with minimal effort on your part. If you've started a blog for your business, or have any tips for other small business owners let us know in the comments below.
Regardless of if you are a local or web based business, it’s incredibly important to keep in touch with current and past customers. Some people do this through Social Media such as Twitter and Facebook, but this can be time consuming for a busy business owner. I cover how to connect with your customer’s through Social Media channels in more detail in my "Plus 1’s and Tweets and Likes Oh My!" post.
Email marketing has gotten a negative connotation in some circles due to some companies purchasing lists of email addresses and then sending lots of junk email or spam to them. Other companies will send emails every few days with little to no value which can be frustrating for their customers. The best practice for email marketing is to collect email addresses only from your own customers, as they are most likely to read the emails you send them due to recognizing your name. You can collect these email address by asking customers to sign up for your mailing list on your site, in your place of business, or when they make a purchase from your site. Be sure to let your customers know that you respect their privacy and will not sell / distribute their address, or spam them into oblivion. If you plan on offering deals and discounts via email, make sure you tell your customers this in order to entice them to give you their email address. A great way to keep in touch with your customers is through monthly newsletters. Depending on your business model, what you’ll include your newsletters will vary. I've listed a few ideas below to get you started:
Provide helpful information and tips to your customers
Inform your customer’s about new products or services that you've recently started offering
Keep customer’s up to date with changes in the industry
Cover success stories from your customers
Interview a customer or industry expert to provide unique insight into a certain aspect of your business
Have one of your employees write a “guest” newsletter where they cover a topic they are an expert in
Another great use of email marketing is to advertise special promotions within your company. Be sure to send these emails a bit more sparingly as they can be viewed as spam from customers if sent to often and they’ll ask to unsubscribe. To accurately monitor the effect that your promotional emails are having, offer your recipients an email only deal where they have to mention the email, or a code from the email to receive a discount. You can also create a special page just for your email offer and direct recipients of the email to that page to take advantage of your offer. Many email marketing companies have tracking integrated into their systems that let you see how many people read your email or clicked on a link in your email, which can provide loads of valuable data. There are numerous companies out there that allow you to send mass emails to a mailing list and track your results, and the majority of them offer similar features. Most of the hosting companies that we work with have partnered with a company called Email Brain and they provide a free 30 day trail directly through your hosting companies control panel. This is a great way to try out the service and make sure it’s right for your business. In order to take advantage of this offer, log into your Control Panel and look for the “Email Brain” icon in the “Marketing Services” section of the Control Panel. Let us know if you've ran a highly successful email marketing campaign, or have found another service such as Email Brain that has worked well for you.
The Industry Buzz section is divided into three major sections, which is then subdivided into smaller sections.
Corporate Blogs which include official blogs from web hosts, registrars, search engines and other related sites.
Magazines & Blogs include interesting websites related to the hosting industry, but not necessarily from official company blogs.
Industry Leaders include personal blogs from important industry leaders, such as employees from Google and WordPress. These blogs sometimes include insights on how industry leaders think, but also may contain topics not related to hosting.