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Archive for the ‘Search Engine Optimization’ Category

How to Use Landing Pages to Turn Attention into Business

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Landing Pages - Social LogosDo you ever envy those folks with hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers, massive numbers of Facebook “Likes,” or floods of blog traffic you can only dream about?

Well, don’t envy them until you’re absolutely sure they actually have a successful business, not just a hefty Klout score.

Unfortunately, building a massive online presence doesn’t magically translate into business. But the happy flip side is — you don’t need to have a zillion social media fans in order to have a successful business, either.

Today we’re going to talk about how to translate attention (which is fleeting on the web, as we know) into paying customers.

Let’s get it started.

First, let’s look at what a landing page is and what it does for your business.

Landing pages turn attention into action

A landing page is a web page designed to focus the attention of your audience member, get her thinking about the right things, and convincing her to take action.

Some actions might be:

  • To make a purchase
  • To sign up for your email list
  • To register to vote
  • To sign up for a volunteer activity
  • To sign a petition
  • To make a donation

It doesn’t really matter what action you want that audience member to take. The landing page is the right tool to get it done.

That means you minimize distractions, pull out all your copywriting skills, and do everything you can to persuade this person to take the action you desire.

Attention on the web is scattered

We’ve all been there — we’re going to seriously focus on something we find on the web … and when we look up 45 minutes later, somehow we’ve just spent all that time reading chocolate cake recipes on Pinterest.

The web is a highly distracting place, and that’s not good for your audience when it comes time for them to focus on what you have to offer.

That’s why landing pages are primarily an attention focusing device. They take a sort-of-paying-attention prospect and dial up her attention level.

That’s why, incidentally, landing pages typically don’t have sidebars, navigation, or links to anything other than the desired action. Once you have your prospect’s attention focused, the last thing you want to do is send him ping-ponging around the web again.

Landing pages use your best persuasion skills

Anything and everything you know about copywriting will go into your landing pages. As you pick up more skill, your landing pages will only get better.

Some important elements of your landing page include:

  • A compelling headline to draw readers in
  • A thorough discussion of benefits (what your product does for your customer) and features
  • Enticing fascinations that build curiosity and desire for what you’re selling (even if it’s free, like your email autoresponder)
  • A clear call to action that lets people know exactly what to do next
  • Some great testimonials, if you have them, to show your expertise and credibility

Article Provided By CopyBlogger

If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

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Do Your Customers Want What You Have to Offer

 

 

 

 

Marketing Core: Getting Started with Content Promotion

Friday, May 22nd, 2015

Marketing Core: Getting Started with Content Promotion

Content Promotion

What’s the first task of every marketer? To grab the Attention of our potential customer. Until we have that, we don’t get an opportunity to deliver our marketing message.

So before we get down to it, first things first. We can’t talk about content promotion without pointing out an important fact.

None of this will work for boring content.

There is no shortcut or workaround. Your content has to be remarkable, period, in order to get the sharing and links that will make you successful.

It’s not a matter of being able to write something that could be published in The New Yorker. But you do need to be able to create content worth talking about. Otherwise — well, no one will talk about you.

We’ve talked before about what makes for remarkable content. For most scenarios, look to create a combination of:

  1. A strong, unique, and memorable voice
  2. Content that’s remarkably useful
  3. Content that’s interesting and reader-friendly

Within that so-called formula is room for infinite variation. Make it your own, butmake it remarkable.

Important: You personally may not be the best person to create remarkable content for your site. If not, start beating the bushes for a contract writer. You might even consider entering into a formal business partnership with someone who does have a strong writing voice (and typically an audience to go with it). It’s that important.

Cultivate your network

Once you have something worth talking about, you need to go find some people to talk about it.

The first question to ask is,

Who else has the traffic you want?

Somewhere out there are people who have the attention of the audience you’re looking for. Your task is to figure out what you can create that will put you on their radar.

Sometimes, this is another blogger or content publisher in your topic. But sometimes it can also be a publisher in a related topic. For example, guest blogging expert Jon Morrow talks about an extremely successful guest post he wrote for Penelope Trunk’s Brazen Careerist blog. He was promoting his own blog, On Moneymaking (which he has since sold). Her blog covered a different topic, but she had the readers he wanted.

The post reached the desired audience and delivered a terrific result — the traffic and subscribers Jon was looking for.

Understand why people share content

It’s very important to realize that influential people share content because it increases their influence with their audience.

That dovetails nicely with our description of remarkable content above. Content that has a distinctive voice, that’s useful, and that’s reader-friendly will also make influential people look smart with their audiences when they share it. Everybody wins.

You’ll also want to be sure to put a solid headline on every piece of content that you want to get shared and linked to. (Which typically means, virtually every piece of content you publish.) The right headline can make all the difference between content that soars and content that fizzles.

Nice guys finish first

You know that successful person who’s awful to everyone? Who makes a name for himself being rude, disrespectful, snarky, and just plain mean?

Yeah, he’s not actually successful. He probably gets a lot of social media attention— and he’s also probably broke.

It should go without saying, but when you’re building your network of content publishers, be a nice person! Be polite, be (genuinely) interested in what your network is doing, be friendly.

Your professional network can make or break you as a content marketer. And social media is already too full of name-calling jerks. Be a good egg. It will serve you well.

How about SEO?

Search engine optimization is a key strategy in content promotion. Fortunately, all of the same techniques you use to get social shares and links will also benefit you with search engines. Be remarkable, develop a solid network of influential content publishers, create lots of useful content, use powerful headlines, and you’ll find that 90% of your SEO work is done.

(The remaining 10% can be taken care of with Scribe — Here’s a link for a nice deal if you aren’t already a Scribe owner.)

Article Provided by: Copyblogger

If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

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How Does Google Rank Your Website?

 

 

 

 

SEO Doesn’t Have to Be Ugly

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

SEO Doesn’t Have to Be Ugly - Marketing related words in tag cloud

 

Do you hate the thought of getting better at SEO?

I totally understand where you’re coming from.

For so many years, SEO seemed either a) impossibly technical, or b) really gross and spammy.

Or both.

Early SEO was a pretty brute force kind of deal. Jam a bunch of keywords into your copy (no matter how nasty it looked). Play a lot of lame tricks on the search engines, like cramming your keywords into hidden tags, or white text on a white background. Pour a ton of money into paid links.

Creepy.

But that kind of SEO just flat out doesn’t work any more, and the pages that went with those tactics got slapped — hard — by Google.

The pages that didn’t get slapped were using a quality-first approach.

It’s more enjoyable to create. It’s (a lot) more enjoyable for your audience to consume. And it’s an area where you, as a Copyblogger reader, have a massive head start.

Is Google a bad guy?

Google’s corporate motto is “Don’t be evil,” but they’re challenging that pretty hard these days.

Moves like killing Google Reader and the Google Promotions tab nonsense have been bad news for pure content creators (like bloggers) and ethical content marketers. (Kind of ironic, given that Google is the biggest and most profitable direct marketer on the planet.)

So an argument could be made that they’ve gone to the dark side.

But here’s the thing: That doesn’t matter.

Whether Google is Chaotic Good, Neutral, or Lawful Evil — Google is the search engine people use right now.

(And always keep in mind — that could change. Don’t pin your business’s future to any outside force, including Google.)

Just like Facebook or Amazon — they’re too big to really think much about you and me. So it’s our job to take care of ourselves. Just like it always has been.

Most of us small businesses find that we get the best experience with Google when we stop trying to cater to Google.

Cater to your audience. Spoil them. Nurture them. Show them a ton of love.

That tends to be what works best for Google … but if Google gets taken out by a meteor tomorrow, your relationship with your audience is still in place. Put that first and you’ll always succeed over the long haul.

Isn’t Google really hard to predict?

Some people refuse to learn anything about SEO because it changes all the time.

Which it does … sort of.

For the most part, what changes is the way that Google chases down and weeds out spam.

This is going to be slightly politically incorrect to say, but … If you don’t publish spam, Google doesn’t change as much as you think it does.

Do some non-spam pages get caught in algorithm changes? Yes. But more than 9 times out of 10, when I look at a page that’s crying foul … the quality just isn’t there. They might follow the letter of the law, but they’re not following the spirit.

The site lacks Awesome.

Matt Cutts is head of the Google webspam team. (He also runs his blog on Genesis. Not that, you know, we’re boasting or anything. OK, yes we are.)

His pronouncements get pored over by SEOs looking for hidden meanings and secret codes.

You want to know what Cutts says every time he opens his mouth?

Don’t publish crappy, low-quality content that no one wants to read in your effort to rank well in the search engines.

(I’m paraphrasing.)

That’s why the audience-first approach works so well, and why it endures.

What works long term

The Copyblogger blog has always done nicely with SEO. It currently ranks for some very competitive terms.

People often think we have an unfair advantage — but Copyblogger started out just like everyone else’s blog does. It had two subscribers, Brian Clark and his mom. And you know his mom wasn’t actually reading it.

Brian wrote about interesting topics in a way that his audience hadn’t seen before. He’d studied copywriting, and he noticed that putting a great, benefit-rich headline on a blog post worked just as well as a great, benefit-rich headline works for a sales page.

He also cultivated relationships with other web publishers, and he was exceedingly careful with his reputation.

Copyblogger has never bought a link. We’ve never run pop-ups to boost our email subscriptions. While others were chasing “tricks,” Brian earned all of the attention the site now receives, by being more than a little obsessed with serving the Copyblogger audience.

Content that’s both useful and interesting. Paying close attention to the audience and what they’re asking for. Sticking to high editorial standards. Evolving and updating the site to keep up with our audience and what they need.

If all of this sounds like a lot of work … it’s true, some days it is. But we’d rather do this than run around being chased by Google’s (or anyone else’s) spam team. It’s just more satisfying work.

It’s more profitable, too. (Nice when those two go together.)

Article Provided By CopyBlogger

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If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

SEO – Search Engine Optimization

Monday, May 4th, 2015
SEO - Search Engine Optimization - How Does Google Rank Your Website?

How Does Google Rank Your Website?

What is SEO?

A simple definition of SEO – search engine optimization in 2015 is that it is a technical and creative process to improve the visibility of a website in search engines, with the aim of driving more potential customers to it.

An Introduction

This is a beginner’s guide to effective white hat seo. I deliberately steer clear of techniques that might be ‘grey hat’, as what is grey today is often ‘black hat’ tomorrow, as far as Google is concerned.

No one page guide can explore this complex topic in full. What you’ll read here is how I approach the basics – and these are the basics – as far as I remember them. At least – these are answers to questions I had when I was starting out in this field. And things have changed since I started this company in 2006.

The ‘Rules’

Google insists webmasters adhere to their ‘rules’ and aims to reward sites with high quality content and remarkable ‘white hat’ web marketing techniques with high rankings. Conversely it also needs to penalise web sites that manage to rank in Google by breaking these rules.

These rules are not laws, only guidelines, for ranking in Google; laid down by Google. You should note that some methods of ranking in Google are, in fact, actually illegal. Hacking, for instance, is illegal.

You can choose to follow and abide by these rules, bend them or ignore them – all with different levels of success (and levels of retribution, from Google’s web spam team). White hats do it by the ‘rules’; black hats ignore the ‘rules’.

What you read in this article is perfectly within the laws and within the guidelines and will help you increase the traffic to your website through organic, or natural search engine results pages (SERPS).

While there are a lot of definitions of SEO (spelled Search engine optimisation in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, or search engine optimization in the United States and Canada) organic SEO in 2015 is mostly about getting free traffic from Google, the most popular search engine in the world (and the only game in town in the UK):

SEO - Search Engine Optimization - Top Search Engines in the UK

The guide you are reading is for the more technical minded.

Opportunity

The art of web seo is understanding how people search for things, and understanding what type of results Google wants to (or will) display to it’s users. It’s about putting a lot of things together to look for opportunity.

A good optimiser has an understanding of how search engines like Google generate their natural SERPS to satisfy users’ NAVIGATIONALINFORMATIONALand TRANSACTIONAL keyword queries.

A good search engine marketer has a good understanding of the short term and long term risks involved in optimising rankings in search engines, and an understanding of the type of content and sites Google (especially) WANTS to return in it’s natural SERPS.

The aim of any campaign is increased visibility in search engines.

There are rules to be followed or ignored, risks to be taken, gains to be made, and battles to be won or lost.

A Mountain View spokesman once called the search engine ‘kingmakers‘, and that’s no lie.

Ranking high in Google is VERY VALUABLE – it’s effectively ‘free advertising’ on the best advertising space in the world.

Traffic from Google natural listings is STILL the most valuable organic traffic to a website in the world, and it can make or break an online business.

The state of play STILL is that you can generate your own highly targeted leads, for FREE, just by improving your website and optimising your content to be as relevant as possible for a customer looking for your company, product or service.

As you can imagine, there’s a LOT of competition now for that free traffic – even from Google (!) in some niches.

The Process

The process can successfully practiced in a bedroom or a workplace, but it has traditionally involved mastering many skills as they arose including diverse marketing technologies including but not limited to:

  • website design
  • accessibility
  • usability
  • user experience
  • website development
  • php, html, css etc
  • server management
  • domain management
  • copywriting
  • spreadsheets
  • back link analysis
  • keyword research
  • social media promotion
  • software development
  • analytics and data analysis
  • information architecture
  • looking at Google for hours on end

It takes a lot, in 2015, to rank on merit a page in Google in competitive niches, and the stick Google is hitting every webmaster with (at the moment, and for the foreseeable future) is the ‘QUALITY USER EXPERIENCE‘ stick.

If you expect to rank in Google in 2015, you’d better have a quality offering, not based entirely on manipulation, or old school tactics.

Is a visit to your site a good user experience? If not – beware MANUAL QUALITY RATERS and BEWARE the GOOGLE PANDA algorithm which is looking for signs of poor user experience and low quality content.

Google raising the ‘quality bar’ ensures a higher level of quality in online marketing in general (above the very low quality we’ve seen over the last years).

Success online involves HEAVY INVESTMENT in on page content, website architecture, usability, conversion to optimisation balance, and promotion.

If you don’t take that route, you’ll find yourself chased down by Google’s algorithms at some point in the coming year.

This ‘what is seo’ guide is not about churn and burn type of Google seo (called webspam to Google).

Article Provided By HOBO

Mojoe.net has more than 16 years of experience with SEO – search engine optimization for our customers websites. Let our team help your website reach the top 10 of Google’s online search engine.  If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your SEO, web security, logo, website, web application, custom programming, or need an IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

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Google May Someday Rank Web Pages On Facts, Not Links

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

facts-myths-knowledge-ss-1920

Google May Someday Rank Web Pages On Facts, Not Links

Will Google someday rank web pages based on how accurate they are? A new paper suggests they might.

Close your eyes and imagine a world where web pages are ranked not only on popularity — i.e., the links that point to them — but also by the accuracy of information they contain. That world may not be too far off.

As New Scientist recently reported, a team of research scientists at Google has published a paper (PDF) explaining the idea of Knowledge-Based Trust (KBT), an alternate way of determining the quality of web pages by looking at how accurate they are.

The quality of web sources has been traditionally evaluated using exogenous signals such as the hyperlink structure of the graph. We propose a new approach that relies onendogenous signals, namely, the correctness of factual information provided by the source. A source that has few false facts is considered to be trustworthy.

The paper goes on to describe how Google could use an extraction process to compare the facts it finds on web pages to facts that are stored in a knowledge base (think Knowledge Graph/Knowledge Vault), and reward pages that are found to be more accurate. In cases where a single web page doesn’t have enough facts, the paper suggests relying on other pages from the same website to determine trustworthiness.

Google has been building a massive database of known facts for years, and in 2012 introduced its Knowledge Graph. That’s the source of those information boxes that show on the right side of Google search results (primarily) for searches involving people, places and known entities.

The authors say their early tests of Knowledge-Based Trust have been promising. “We applied it to 2.8 billion triples extracted from the web, and were thus able to reliably predict the trustworthiness of 119 million web pages and 5.6 million websites.” (Note: The paper uses “triples” to describe the factual elements found and extracted from web pages.)

This KBT concept wouldn’t necessarily work uniformly across the internet, since many web pages don’t exist to share facts and aren’t about entities that exist in a Knowledge Graph-style database.

Along those lines, the authors say this way of measuring trustworthiness “provides an additional signal for evaluating the quality of a website,” and could be used “in conjunction with existing signals such as PageRank” — not necessarily as a replacement.

Article Provided By Search Engine Land

If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

On March 15, 2015, the article “SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal” was posted on the web. It is a most read for any website owner.

SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal - Responsive Design

New Changes Start April 21

Do you have a mobile or responsive site? If not, on April 21 you may find it harder to rank in Google’s mobile search results.

Google announced algorithm updates that will have a “significant impact” on mobile search results worldwide for mobile searchers. The update improves rankings for sites that provide a mobile-friendly experience to searchers on mobile devices, and, by association, demotes sites that do not.

Google announced algorithm updates that will have a “significant impact” on mobile search results worldwide for mobile searchers.

Note that the mobile-friendly update only affects mobile search results — i.e., searches from smartphones and tablets — not searches conducted on a desktop or laptop computer.

In addition, the algorithm is applied worldwide, page by page, on a real-time basis. “Worldwide” means that the algorithm update affects mobile searchers and search results in all countries at the same time, rather than just rolling out in the U.S. first.

“Page by page” means that each page’s mobile friendliness is judged separately. That’s good news if your ecommerce catalog is mobile friendly but your forums or other content sections are not. The unfriendly sections will not cause your entire site to be ranked as unfriendly.

“Real time” means that you can expect to see the mobile ranking benefit of making your site mobile friendly right away. The next time Googlebot crawls your pages and determines that they are newly mobile friendly, the mobile-friendly ranking algorithm would kick in for those pages. This is especially good news because some algorithm updates have been processed on a monthly or unknown time cycle and applied to the algorithm in batches.

Beware, though, because real time also works both ways. If an update were made to your site that makes pages unfriendly, the mobile-friendly ranking algorithm would kick in for those pages the next time your site is crawled.

In addition, content from indexed Android apps can now be ranked in search results for searchers who are signed in to Google and have that Android app installed on their mobile device. Since Google would have no access to Apple’s iTunes database, iOS apps would not be included in this app ranking improvement.

Google’s stated goal is to improve searcher experience. It’s frustrating to search on a phone and land on a page that’s so tiny you can’t accurately click the links without pinching and zooming and scrolling to find the right text or links.

Google is converting that frustration into an improvement in its search results, so that more mobile searchers will land on sites with positive mobile experiences. It makes sense from the searcher’s perspective, which is what matters to Google.

But from an ecommerce perspective, it could possibly be a very costly update in terms of lost mobile traffic and revenue.

Example of Mobile Impact

Say you use your smartphone to search for “formal dresses.” Starting April 21, the results on your smartphone will be reordered based on the relative mobile friendliness of the sites. The image below shows my mobile search result for “formal dresses.”

SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal - mobile impact

Keep in mind that the mobile search result is probably personalized in some way. Your mobile search results may vary. The important thing to note is that the first, second, and fifth organic search results are already deemed “Mobile-friendly,” as I have highlighted above.

Google has already been annotating mobile-friendly pages for searchers, in an effort to help influence mobile searchers toward a better mobile experience.

On April 21, the annotation will become part of the ranking algorithm, affecting the order of search results directly. In Google’s words, the change will have a “significant impact” on search results for mobile searchers.

The burning question is how significant the impact will be.

Will the fifth ranking site move up to the third place, ahead of the non-friendly sites so that the new ranking order becomes 1, 2, 5, 3, 4? Or will the sites that rank third and fourth today disappear completely from the first page of results, so that only mobile-friendly sites grace the first page? There’s no way to know until April 21.

Ecommerce Impact

Maybe it’s easy to dismiss the example above. It’s one keyword, likely not even related to your industry. How many people even search for formal dresses on their phones anyway?

It turns out that searchers want to find “formal dresses” over 100,000 times a month, according to Google’s Keyword Planner, and nearly 300,000 more want some variation of formal dress keywords, such as a semi-formal dress.

Of all those nearly 400,000 searches on average per month in Google in the U.S., only 39 percent of them happen on a computer. That means that 61 percent — about 240,000 searches a month — occur on smartphones and will be significantly impacted by Google’s mobile-friendly algorithm update on April 21.

SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal - stats

If a consumer is searching on a mobile device for a product sold specifically by your ecommerce brand, my prediction is that your brand will continue to rank at the top regardless of mobile friendliness. For example, for site-branded keywords, such as “macys formal dresses,” mobile search results are unlikely to change dramatically. There’s no way to know for certain until April 21, but logically Google should respect the searcher’s ecommerce brand navigational search intent.

The same would presumably not hold true for product brand searches, such as “UGG boots,” where many etailers sell that brand. We should expect the mobile-friendly update to impact product branded keywords in the same way as it would a completely unbranded keyword like “winter boots.”

Impact on Your Ecommerce Performance

First, determine if Google sees your pages as mobile friendly. It doesn’t matter if you think they’re mobile friendly or your agency tells you that they are. What matters is what Google determines algorithmically because it has 100 percent control over how your site ranks.

Google has provided a mobile-friendly testing tool that analyzes each page that you enter and tells you whether it’s mobile friendly or not. The image below shows a page that is not mobile friendly, and the resources that Google recommends to resolve those issues.

SEO: Google to Make ‘Mobile-friendly’ a Ranking Signal - mobile friendly

Resolving the issues could be as simple as asking your developer to update your robots.txt file to remove a block on certain files (your developer will know what this means). Or it could be as difficult as a redesign to implement responsive design or mobile site best practices.

How this affects your ecommerce business depends a great deal on your mobile search performance today. Remember that the only traffic and sales at risk here is organic search driven via a mobile device (smartphone and tablet).

Analyze the risk in any change that will impact search engine optimization in terms of worst-case scenario.

The worst-case scenario is that all of the sales-driven organic search traffic via a mobile device disappears instantly when the change happens. That’s the worst case. It can’t get worse than losing it all. In all likelihood, the worst case won’t actually occur, and the decrease would be more like 80 percent, or 50 percent. But measuring the worst case helps you decide if the issue really is significant enough to act on immediately.

Start by measuring the amount of affected traffic and sales today and determine the real impact of losing it all. Remember, filter the visits and sales so that the data only contains organic search-driven traffic via a mobile device. Then determine the impact to your ecommerce business if those traffic and sales disappeared completely on April 21.

That’s how to determine the actual cost. What’s more difficult to measure, however, is the opportunity that this algorithm update represents.

How many of your competitors will be boosted by the mobile-friendly update? How many will be demoted? Can you capitalize on their loss? Is this an opportunity to surpass the competition?

Keep in mind, receiving few visits and sales via mobile search today does not in any way indicate the true size of the opportunity.

Head to the Google Keyword Planner and identify the actual opportunity that mobile search represents. Test your assumptions using keyword research and determine the true size of the mobile search opportunity before dismissing it as a useless channel.

I was skeptical, for example, that “formal dresses” would drive any real mobile search traffic. I was wrong.

Article Provided By PracticalEcommerce

If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

Social Media Strategies

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

 

Social Media Strategies

Pamela Lund is a well-known PPC marketing specialist, and an upcoming speaker at the SEJ Summit in Santa Monica on February 24thThe conference ticket cost for attendees is being covered by our partner, Searchmetrics, which delivers enterprise SEO and content marketing analysis, recommendations, forecasting and reporting for companies that want potential customers to find them faster.

Want to attend? We still have a few spots open – so if you are in the LA area and want to learn from Pamela (and other speakers like Neil Patel, Stephan Spencer, Morgan Brown, and more), sign up for an invite now. If you aren’t in the LA area, check out where else the SEJ Summit will be this year, including Chicago, NYC, San Francisco, London, and Dallas.

 

We are excited to welcome Pamela next week. and can’t wait to hear what she has to say. But for now, here is some insight from Pamela on PPC and paid social media:

1. Out of all the platforms you run PPC campaigns for clients (AdWords, FB, LinkedIn, Bing, etc), which do you find to have the largest ROI?

As with all things SEM, the answer is it depends.

For e-commerce, the best performing channels in my experience are AdWords and Bing search, including Shopping/Product Listing Ads campaigns. Buyer intent is higher when people are specifically searching your keywords and you can qualify them with the ad message. Shopping ads work particularly well for sellers who have the best prices in their market or unique products that stand out from the competition when users see product images. You can be successful with AdWords and Bing search based ads with almost any budget (within reason).

AdWords and Bing search based ads also work well for lead generation if you have a landing page optimized for converting this type of traffic. Frequently people are in research mode when searching, so you need to give them just enough information to convince them to contact you or offer them something in exchange, such as a relevant white paper, in exchange for submitting their contact information.

Display/banner advertising can work well for almost any business if proper targeting is employed in combination with good banners and a strong landing page. You may want to expect lower performance from display advertising in exchange for the branding you receive. View through conversions can indicate if display advertising is offering any lift in conversions.

Facebook ads and Twitter ads can be successful for e-commerce if you have a product or service that is inexpensive and interesting enough to be an impulse buy and you’re targeting the right audience. In many cases though, I use social network advertising for branding, for giveaways and contests, and for cheap traffic generation so we can tag users with remarketing pixels so we can reach them with ads when they are in a buying mindset. I also usually encourage clients to run a likes/followers ad campaign so we can increase the number of quality fans both for page engagement and branding as well as to improve the data available for building lookalike audiences for ad targeting.

LinkedIn Ads work well for B2B products and services, but usually when used as lead gen with the actual sale happening through an email drip or personal contact. The LinkedIn Ads platform offers fantastic targeting options if you know the job title of your decision maker or if you are trying to reach people who work in certain industries. Unfortunately, the minimum CPC is $2 so if you do not convert well or have a high CPA threshold, the leads may be too expensive. Volume is also a limiting factor for LinkedIn Ads.

For app installs, Twitter and Facebook ads perform well. If the app is free, the conversion rates can be phenomenal. You need to have some form of app analytics implemented to track the quality of the installs to optimize your targeting for the long-term, but if sheer volume of installs/user signups is the goal, such as with start-ups raising funding, social ads are a good approach.

2. What types of companies should focus more on paid social campaigns via paid search?

Companies trying to boost app installs, grow fan engagement, build remarketing audience size, or building buzz for an upcoming offering will most likely have better results from social advertising than from paid search. Anything with a social component will also work well if you are targeting users in the network you want them to use to share your content. For instance, if you are running a contest that people get an extra entry to if they share your content, they will be more likely to share it if it is as easy as possible. So, targeting people within Facebook with a request to share a Facebook post will be more successful than targeting people with an AdWords ad that links to your website with a request to share the page on a social network.

Companies that have a longer buying cycle or those that get repeat purchases from their users tend to see a significant boost in conversions if they incorporate social network advertising in their overall strategy because they keep the brand in the user’s consciousness. Even if the conversions don’t come from clicks on the social ads, the consistent reminders bring users back for future purchases. Just like television advertising doesn’t cause people to immediately get in the car and drive to the store to buy a product, it influences their buying decision next time they are shopping.

Any business that has a strong social presence can also be successful advertising on social networks. Without a strong social presence (active Facebook page or Twitter stream), the advertising may not be as effective as people tend to look for multiple cues before buying.

3. When I do PPC campaigns for clients, writing “perfect” ad copy can get tedious. Can you give us a few strategies for writing ad copy?

Good PPC managers are a wonderfully crazy bunch. We have to have a bit of a split personality in order to be successful at and enjoy our jobs. That being said, optimizing ad copy can be tedious, especially if you’ve been working on an account for a while and think you’ve tested everything that can be tested. However, there are always new things to try. Some of my favorite tips are:

  • When writing ads for a new client, read their website to get comfortable with any language specific to their business, ask the client to describe their product to you in their own words, read their competitors’ ads and websites, and read forums or product reviews to see how consumers refer to the product. Use phrases that the consumers use, even if your client doesn’t use them. You’re not trying to get your client to click the ad, you’re trying to attract buyers.
  • When writing new ads, don’t try to change every piece of the ad. You only need to change one line, and sometimes only one word, to have a significant impact on performance. If you change too many variables at once, you won’t know what caused the change in CTR or conversion rate and you’ll use up all your good ideas in one ad. Instead, try a new headline or change the context (use an exclamation instead of a question).
  • Don’t try to be too clever with text ads. You have a split second to get people to pay attention and decide to click. Never underestimate the value of just telling people what to do, such as “Buy Now To Save 20%.”
  • The formula of “ask a question and solve the problem” works well in most industries. If you ask the right question to the right audience and have the right solution, you will get a good CTR and conversion rate. If someone is searching for a roofer you might show them an ad that says “Need A New Roof? Mention This Ad For $250 Off.” Needing a new roof is their problem and giving them $250 off a new one is your solution.

4. What made you decide to specialize on PPC instead of trying to focus on multiple areas of marketing?

I love SEM because I get to do something different every day, even if I’m working on the same accounts for extended periods of time. There are so many facets to internet advertising from keyword research to writing ad copy to data analysis to audience identification that it never gets boring. I also love the instant gratification you get with advertising. I can put up a campaign and have data within minutes. Not that I ever obsessively refresh the Google Analytics real-time reports right after launching new campaigns. Nope, I never do that.

And if I’m being honest, I have absolutely no website design ability nor do I have the patience to chase search engine algorithms by doing SEO. My skills just fit perfectly with advertising management.

5. I’m always trying to create a dialogue about women in search marketing since we are usually the minority. What are three tactics you can give to new women search professionals trying to make a name for themselves in the search industry?

This is the hardest question in this interview by far because my first instinct is to say “Don’t think of yourself as a woman in the search industry.” I’ll quote my friend Rae Hoffman who has written on this issue and has somehow done a much better job of conveying how I feel about it than I can:

“Be yourselves, never see being a woman as a disadvantage, an advantage or above all, an excuse.”

That being said, here are a few tips for anyone of any gender in any industry, mostly geared towards freelancers:

  • Network with people who do something other than what you do. You’re more likely to get referrals from people who aren’t your competition than people who are. Yes, I refer work to other SEM agencies and those agencies refer to me but the majority of my referrals come from SEOs, web designers, and happy clients. It’s important to know people who do the same thing you do so you can ask them questions when you have a problem, but if you’re trying to grow your profile, network with other people, too. Yes, that includes people who aren’t even in the search industry.
  • Be trustworthy and be a resource for others. If you develop a reputation for being honest and trustworthy, people will be more likely to recommend you for jobs and will be more interested in what you have to say, leading to more speaking engagements, blogging opportunities, or other exposure.
  • Don’t trash your competition to get ahead. This is a small industry and whatever you say will get back to whomever you say it about. Just don’t be that person. You’re better than that. If you aren’t, become better than that.
  • Charge what you’re worth and stand behind your prices. If you aren’t confident about your rates, your clients won’t be either. If a client doesn’t think you’re worth what you’re charging, rather than reducing your rates to keep them, let them go so you will have time to work on a project that pays you what you’re worth. Now, if none of your clients think you’re worth what you’re charging, you may need to look at the value you’re providing.
  • Don’t work with clients you don’t like or for businesses you morally disagree with.You will perform much better for clients you enjoy working for and will do a much better job of selling products you believe in.

If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your logo, web site, web application, need custom programming, or IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at dwerne@mojoe.net.

Article Provided By Search Engine Journal

Digital Footprint – Cracking the Code

Friday, February 21st, 2014

Cracking the Code: Web Design and how it affects Your Firm’s Digital Footprint

Digital Footprint, Mojoe.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tips and Practices for understanding your digital footprint

The creation and marketing of a Web Site for a Law Firm’s is a unique type of undertaking. Law firms unfortunately are restricted as I am sure most of you are well aware of when it comes to advertising, endorsements and discussing cases. This does not make marketing a law firm services and identity an easy task.

And now you have to contend with your firm’s digital footprint and brand identity that has been released out into cyberspace, people are constantly dreaming up new ways to hijack your brand and siphon off its value. From phishing attacks to counterfeit domains and bogus Facebook accounts, each new digital channel quickly attracts its share of “black hat” operators. In conjunction your firm has to combat anonymous complaints because of your firm’s web site and its content.

(Note: This situation will get more complicated in the coming years due to the gTLD program which will create 1800 new domain name extensions.)

So how do you establish your firm’s digital footprint while still adhering to the rules?

The expansion of social interaction, email, web sites, smart phones, tablets, and e-blast have driven down cost, but in-turn created a global audience and have given multiple ways to reach clients.

So how do you as marketing professionals measure and develop a digital reputation for your law firm that shares excellent resources and presents a compelling narrative for learning more so a client or potential client can make an informed decision about who your law firm is and what services your law firm offers.

Which you hope will prompt them to perform a call to action, that creates business for your firm. That is quantifiable.

So, what is your firm’s digital footprint and what is the message your firm’s digital footprint is conveying?

How big is your brand’s digital footprint? Likely bigger than you think Geographic or country domains, email addresses, Twitter handles, Facebook pages, LinkedIn pages, mobile apps, blogs—many brands have all of these and more.

Here are some basic tools you can use to get a better understanding of your firm’s digital footprint.

So now you have an understanding of your digital footprint.

  • You may have a footprint
  • You may have a partial footprint
  • Your footprint may belong to someone else
  • Your footprint maybe small
  • Your potential footprint maybe extremely large

Depending upon whether your firm’s digital footprint is easy to find, difficult to find or there was nothing to find, gets back to how you market your firm’s web site and its digital presence.

Social Media is one of the most effective ways to manage and promote your digital footprint as well as increase business. Using the following tools can make your firm’s digital footprint easier to manage and maintain. You can also manage your firm’s overall message while making sure to stay within the rules and keep your disclaimer easily accessible.

Search Engine Optimization and Registration the ongoing battle

One of the most overlooked or under-utilized tools for sharing a part of your firm’s digital footprint is search engine optimization and search engine registration. Good and effective SEO is not done only once but is a constant ongoing battle. You have to wage a word WAR in order to accomplish effective SEO placement.

Here is a list of correct common practices that all web site should do for effective optimization

  • Content Creation with Keyword Strategy
  • Google Keyword Planner Tool
  • Deep Linking
  • Alt Tags
  • Title Tags
  • H1 Tags
  • Meta Tags
  • Sitemap.xml
  • Robots.txt file
  • Blogs
  • SEO Plugins and Modules
  • Wikipedia Page

Once you have completed optimization of your site; you need to be sure to register your site every 30 to 90 days with all 30,000 search engines and link directories.

Be sure to continue the battle for your digital footprint (Initial Keyword Strategy)

  • Blog Post
  • Social Post
  • New Page Creation
  • All Digital Content

Analytics and what it means to your firms marketing efforts

Now you have all of this incoming traffic from multiple sources all being directed back to your firm’s web site. You NOW have all of this great analytical data, but what does it mean to you and how can you show the benefit to the rest of the firm.

(Slide 15 Analytics Logos)
Make sure that you have some type of tracking software installed into your site. We prefer Google Analytics because it is free and it offers so much analytical information. There are other analytical engines out there.  Suggested analytics tracking programs that can be installed on your web site.

Looking at Statistics can make your head swim and it is easy to get confused when looking at Google Analytics. There is so much analytical data to sort through that it can seem overwhelming.

Understanding and discerning the statistical information in Google Analytics can be simplified, by breaking it down into the 5 main categories:

  • Real-Time
  • Audience
  • Acquisition
  • Behavior
  • Conversion

Real time, tracks actual visitors on your site, live in real time. You can break that information down into locations, traffic sources, content, events, and conversions.

The audience section will break down the demographics, interest, geo, behavior, technology, mobile, custom and visitors flow. The last two categories have been newly added in the last 6 months. Each one of these sub categories can be broken down even further. The main statistical sections you want to look at are the Overview and Mobile.

  • Overview*
  • Demographics
  • Interests
  • Geo*
  • Behavior*
  • Technology
  • Mobile*
  • Custom
  • Visitors Flow

This section will tell you where your traffic is coming from, whether it is organic, direct, ad words, social, ad word campaigns, or paid search. It is broken into the following sub sections:

  • Overview
  • Channels
  • All Traffic*
  • All Referrals*
  • Campaigns
  • Keywords
  • Cost Analysis
  • Ad Words
  • Social
  • Search Engine Optimization

Behavior is another main section that has a great amount of statistical data, however there are only a couple of sub sections, which are important in helping you determining your traffics behavior. Understanding which pages are attracting traffic to your site and what pages your traffic is leaving your web site. This is critical to the continued health of your firm’s web site.

Overview
Behavior Flow
Site Content*
Site Speed
Site Search
Events
AdSense
Experiments
In-Page Analytics*

Conversions are combined user interaction information with Google Ad words. This section can be extremely important if you are running a Google Ad word campaign and spending ad dollars with Google. This metric will show you conversions from your ad word campaign to a quantifiable action on your web site.

Bringing this all together… Getting a clear view of your digital footprint and taking the necessary steps to optimize your site along with analysis can seem daunting, not least of all because the digital landscape is changing so quickly. However, with the right partner you can ensure that you are prioritizing the actions best suited for your law firm’s digital footprint.

Google Penguin Update: Seriously, Avoid Doorway Pages

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

If you want to avoid Google’s Penguin update (or recover from it), you’re going to have to make sure your site falls in line withGoogle’s quality guidelines. We’ve been posting various articles on these guidelines, such as:

Google Penguin Update: Don’t Forget About Duplicate Content

Google Penguin Update: A Lesson In Cloaking

Google Penguin Update Recovery: Hidden Text And Links

Recover From Google Penguin Update: Get Better At Links

Google Penguin Update: 12 Tips Directly From Google

Google Penguin Update Recovery: Getting Better At Keywords

One of Google’s guidelines is: “Avoid ‘doorway’ pages created just for search engines, or other ‘cookie cutter’ approaches such as affiliate programs with little or no original content.”

So, let’s look at exactly what Google has to say about doorway pages (from Google’s help center):

Doorway pages are typically large sets of poor-quality pages where each page is optimized for a specific keyword or phrase. In many cases, doorway pages are written to rank for a particular phrase and then funnel users to a single destination.

Whether deployed across many domains or established within one domain, doorway pages tend to frustrate users, and are in violation of our Webmaster Guidelines.

Google’s aim is to give our users the most valuable and relevant search results. Therefore, we frown on practices that are designed to manipulate search engines and deceive users by directing them to sites other than the ones they selected, and that provide content solely for the benefit of search engines. Google may take action on doorway sites and other sites making use of these deceptive practice, including removing these sites from the Google index.

Google’s Matt Cutts recently posted a video confirming that Google doesn’t consider tweets from Twitter accounts that post every article from a site to be doorway pages.

 

 

It might seem strange that someone would even ask about that:

@AnnieCushing
Annie Cushing@mattcutts Someone actually asked that? 6 days ago via TweetDeck ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@mattcutts
Matt Cutts@AnnieCushing *shrug* I can’t help what people ask. :) 5 days ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

…but, as Cutts has suggested more than once in recent memory, people shouldn’t have to be SEO experts or worry too much about SEO to still be found in Google, if the quality and relevance is there.

Also, as Google has admitted in the past, no algorithm is perfect, and when they launch a major update that impacts a lot of sites, webmasters who don’t know what they did wrong (if in fact they did do something wrong) are looking for any possible thing that Google’s imperfect algorithm might have found questionable.

They say, “There’s no such thing as a stupid question.”

If it were all so simple, Cutts wouldn’t have any reason to record endless Webmaster Help videos.

Anyhow, Google views doorway pages as those who are deceptively leading users to low quality specifically-optimized pages, and that’s what you want to avoid doing. Just don’t use pages designed to take users to places they’re not trying to go. That’s where they’ll get you.

In that particular guideline, Google says to avoid appoaches with “little or no original content.” That’s an important thing to consider, as well. Whereas Penguin is designed to target sites violating the quality guidelines, this could get you in trouble there, but it could also get you in trouble with the ever-refreshing Panda update (2 refreshes in April alone), which is focused specifically on content quality.

Google actually has a help center article specifically defining “little or no original content,” where the company says, “One of the most important steps in improving your site’s ranking in Google search results is to ensure that it contains plenty of rich information that includes relevant keywords, used appropriately, that indicate the subject matter of your content.”

“However, some webmasters attempt to improve their page’s ranking and attract visitors by creating pages with many words but little or no authentic content,” Google adds. “Google will take action against domains that try to rank more highly by just showing scraped or other auto-generated pages that don’t add any value to users. ”

Google goes on to give examples as being: thin affiliate sites (noting that being an affiliate is no problem as long as there’s added value), doorway pages, auto-generated content and scraped content.

Here’s a good piece of advice Cutts gave on his personal blog back in 2005: “Do not hire an assclown SEO that makes doorway pages with sneaky redirects.”

He also offered the following advice a few months later:

If someone came to you and said “I want to rent out your mail server. I’d like to send out some emails from your server, and I’ll give you $N to do it,” you’d be suspicious and probably say no–unless you wanted your mail server to end up on email blacklists. In the same way, if someone comes to you and says “I’ll give you $N to rent subdomains, subdirectories, or pages from you. Just link to my doorway pages from your content,” I would recommend to say no as well. It can affect the reputation of your domain if you host doorway pages for someone else and then that other person creates spam on the pages on your domain.

About a year and a half ago, Webmaster Tools started sending out notices about doorway pages.

Image: Batman Returns (Warner Bros.)

Follow up to Lunch and Learn with Greenville Marketing Lab – Blogging, SEO, and Learning Greenville, SC

Thursday, April 12th, 2012
Deveren WerneJay Spivey and Kamran Popkin offered great advise on blogging and using digital magazines at yesterday’s Lunch & Learn! Thanks!!

www.greenvillemarketinglab.com

Thanks to all who attended and presented at our Lunch & Learn at Ford’s Oyster House! I’m following the advice of Kamran Popkin, one of our speakers, who recommended blogging each morning while the coffee is brewing. Make blogging a habit, find your voice! Looking forward to our upcoming You Tub…
Useful links for Search Engine Optimization
  • Use Google Keyword Tool to create check your keywords and see how popular they are.
  •  Use Web Site Grader to analyze your site; its a free tool and if you search you can find other ones for analyzing your site
  • Check Link Popularity – If you are being linked to or are linking to other companies check their page rank to see how popular their site may be. The higher the page rank the potential for more of that traffic to visit your web site. You can check your page rank at Google Page Rank
  • Add Google Analytic s or Re-Invigorate – At Mojoe we use both of these tools Google is free and re-invigorate it $10.00 dollars a month. We do this so we can have cross comparison of analytical data for your web site.
  • SEO by Yoast This is a great plugin for WordPress
  • You can also check out one of our Blog posts that gives you a Step by Step checklist when designing and developing a web site

If you would like additional information on designing and developing your web site please check out our Blog.

Web Design Greenville SC | Mojoe Blog is proudly powered by WordPress | Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS).

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