There’s no going back, people – search engine optimization is here to stay. For years, skeptics and detractors have claimed that SEO is in its last throes, its heyday long past. As it turns out, they were sorely mistaken. Not only is search engine optimization still going strong, nearly every business under the sun is currently utilizing some form of it. If you’re a latecomer to SEO, you’ll need to find a way to get a leg-up on the competition. Fortunately, there are a number of helpful tools – many of them free – designed to help you do just that.
Raven Tools is a fantastic all-in-one toolkit for companies who are relatively new to SEO marketing. Although taking full advantage of the software requires a membership fee, the prices are reasonable, and you’re guaranteed to see a return on your investment. Raven Tools performs too many functions to list, but its primary purpose is providing businesses with detailed reports on popular keywords and phrases, as well as SEO trends. Drawing data from numerous sources – Google AdWords, Google Analytics and Majestic SEO, to name a few – Raven Tools produces comprehensive reports to help guide your company’s SEO strategy. In light of its many perks, it’s no surprise that Raven Tools was named Top Ten Reviews’ Number One SEO Tool.
Keywords and phrases play an integral role in virtually any SEO marketing campaign. Since these terms and phrases are what ultimately get your site noticed by prominent search engines, it’s important to do your homework before deciding on suitable keywords. This is where tools like WordTracker come in. Displaying data for over 150 million popular search terms, WordTracker enables you to gauge the effectiveness of popular keywords before deciding whether or not to incorporate them into your web content. This convenient tool also shows you how many websites are competing for the same keywords, as well as how much you can expect to pay for those keywords in a search engine bidding war.
A popular WordTracker add-on, Link Builder takes SEO research a step further. This ingenious tool searches the Internet for beneficial link prospects. Filtering results by relevance, authority and popularity, Link Builder provides you with comprehensive lists of websites to purchase ad space on and suggests effective linking practices that won’t cost your business a penny. You can also program Link Builder to automatically remove images, postings and other links that have proven ineffective at drawing traffic to your website. So in addition to providing you with helpful strategies, Link Builder essentially does your cleanup work for you.
According to Entrepreneur’s Jason Demers, SEO has become the online marketing strategy of choice for businesses of every shape and size. As a rapidly increasing number of businesses come to realize that SEO is the way of the future, you can’t let your company be left in the dust. If you need help setting a viable SEO strategy into motion, simply enlist the aid of the previously discussed tools. Being late to the SEO party doesn’t mean your company can’t reap its rewards.Read More
When it comes to running a blog to promote your business, organization or brand – even if the brand is simply you as an individual professional – you have to offer engaging, unique content on a regular basis. You want not only to build an audience of repeat visitors, but also to offer content that visitors are going to want to share on social media so they help with the marketing for you. If you’re serious about your blog, you need to book expert guest bloggers on a regular basis.
It Frees Up More Time for You
Unless blogging is your full-time job, it’s difficult to find the time to write an engaging post every day or even a few days per week. But if you want regular visitors who help establish your brand, you need to offer new content regularly. When you have guest posts scheduled into your week, it gives you a day off from coming up with new content yourself.
It Lends Credibility to Your Blog
The more professional guest post writers you have write for your blog, the bigger contender your blog seems in the industry – and the more trustworthy an authority it will be to your audience. Forbes reports that 33 percent of millennials visit blogs to do research before making a purchase. They’re more likely to buy things you recommend or trust guest posters that your own products and services are worth buying if you update frequently.
Exchange Guest Posts
Securing expert guests to write posts for your blog is a bit of a Catch-22. The more quality writers will pay attention to you if your blog has been established as a website that other experts in the industry consider worthwhile, but you need to get some guest posts first before you can do that. However, you can entice guests to write for you by:
- Starting with experts who are less popular and offering a spot on your blog as an opportunity for them to start building their own brand.
- Offering to write a post for their blog in exchange for theirs.
- Providing them with free advertising space on your blog for a limited time.
- Establishing a large following on social media to demonstrate that your blog has a large audience.
- Being flexible, as someone who might be willing to write a post for you in a few months might simply not have the time right now.
- Contacting a lot of potential guest posters but not all in the same email. Be sure to add a personal touch to each email so it shows you did your research. If you contact 100 potential writers and only 10 respond positively, that’s still 10 opportunities your efforts have produced.
According to HubSpot, marketers who prioritize their blogging enjoy 13 times better return on investment than those who don’t. Guest posts are one way to maximize the potential of your blog. It not only gives you a break from generating content, but it also lends credibility and increases traffic to your site. Consider guest posting for other blogs in your industry as well to generate more traffic back to your site.Read More
You put your all into composing fascinating, well-written articles for your business’s website. Unfortunately, the number of visitors you’ve managed to attract hardly represents the amount of hard work you’ve poured in to this endeavor. However, the problem isn’t so much the quality of the articles; it’s the fault of poor marketing. By taking strides to promote your site’s content, you can increase your audience and attract the attention of new customers in a timely manner. Getting your articles the recognition they deserve is easier than you may think.
Target a Specific Audience
While there’s nothing wrong with trying to expand your customer base, it’s important to remain true to your core demographic. If the products and services you offer are targeted at a specific group, your articles should cater to this group. Trying to please too many demographics at once is practically guaranteed to result in vague, uninformative articles that are neither entertaining nor useful. With this in mind, make sure the tone and content of your articles are consistent with what your company does. Although topics shouldn’t be redundant, they shouldn’t stray too far from your industry, either. In order to keep the tone fresh, consider alternating article-writing duties with various members of your staff. This will ensure that your audience stays entertained and informed and keep them coming back.
Grab the Attention of Search Engines
Search engine optimization is one of the most effective ways to get your business noticed in the digital age. As Venture Beat’s Kim Honjo explains, SEO has the power to put small businesses on equal footing with massive conglomerates. While there are many different ways to utilize SEO, keyword insertion is arguably the easiest. This practice entails inserting keywords and phrases into articles in an effort to get the content noticed by popular search engines. “Media consultants in Madison,” “best restaurant in Nashville” and “home repairs in Atlanta” are the types of phrases that will draw the attention of search engines. Keywords tend to have the most success when used in article titles and page headings as opposed to the actual body of the content. Additionally, using them too often is liable to have your articles labeled as spam and draw the ire of search giants like Google and Bing.
Spread the Word via Social Media
In recent years, social media has become a prominent marketing tool for businesses of all sizes. Not only do outlets like Facebook and Twitter allow you to keep costumers informed, they also enable you to market web content free of charge. According to Entrepreneur’s Jim O’Hara, many modern-day consumers get their purchasing cues from social media. The next time an article is posted on your website, don’t hesitate to share the link on your various social media accounts. Furthermore, encourage your followers to share and retweet every article link you post. You’d be surprised by how many page views a retweet from a popular follower can generate.
Creating web content can be equal parts rewarding and soul-crushing. When your articles attract positive attention and bring in scores of new traffic, you feel like you’re on top of the world. Alternatively, when they go unread, you’re utterly crestfallen. To ensure that your future articles are given their due, remember to reach out to a specific audience, brush up on SEO practices and put your social media accounts to good use.Read More
Writing for the internet today has become its own art form. That may send chills down the spines of those who grew up on Hemingway or Faulkner, but the fact is more people read articles online than in any other form today. The difference between blogging and literary fiction is not so far off – Hemingway was trying to drive traffic to bookstores to purchase his novels, whereas your goal is to drive traffic to your website in order to increase your own business sales. The main difference however is that the online audience has a rapidly decreasing attention span, and has little patience for bland and useless content. If you’re only worried about the technical side of SEO, you’re missing out on the whole point. Keep these ideas in mind when developing your next content calendar.
Go Against the Norm
Chances are by following the industry news you’re able to get an idea of what topics are being generally discussed and where the overall accepting opinion lies. But it’s always fun to play devil’s advocate. Find a relevant way to start a new topic that may go against the grain. Don’t be afraid of upsetting the status quo, the goal of your content should be to increase engagement with your audience, and if all you’re doing is repeating the echo chamber, no one will be inspired to connect with or share your writing.
Use Videos and Images
A great way for your article to get noticed is to splice in other forms of media such as videos, images, and infographics. People tend to be visual learners, and especially with videos, this is an added opportunity to showcase the personality behind the business. Infographics used to go viral just by virtue of being an infographic. That doesn’t happen anymore. Everyone has caught on and making infographics. You have to make a case for why your infographic matters and should be shared just the same as any other piece of content.
Google awards sites with greater authority if they have a diverse, relevant, and natural looking backlink profile. A great way to advertise your site while diversifying your backline profile is to write a guest post on another blog that contains a link back to you. The owner will be happy to have a unique and interesting article to add to his site and you’ll be able add another organic IP address to your profile. Obviously you don’t want to reach out to competitors, but there are no doubt a number of related industries that would value what you had to say, and would appreciate you reaching out to them. It is key to gain the interest of webmasters with quality sites to link to you in order to build a great backlink profile that will help your rankings, quality natural search engine optimization services are the most sought after in the industry. This is where a little bit of charm and genuine interest becomes an important part of your PR campaign.
Use Social Media
People today spend more time on social media sites than anywhere else on the Internet. One of the oldest adages in marketing is ‘go where the people are’ and if you’re neglecting your social media presence, you’re missing out on all the fun. Coordinate your posting schedule so that you’re making regular updates across the various time zones to ensure you’re reaching your entire audience. Keep in mind, the audience on Twitter isn’t the same crowd of people on Pinterest or Google+. Do research to find out where your niche audience tends to congregate and go find them there. Target your content based on the information you’re able to gather and take into consideration the demographics of the followers you attract. Become a consistent participant in your industry’s online community and the trust you develop will lead to direct word of mouth recommendations, which tends to be the best opportunities for converting traffic to sales.
Evergreen articles are those that have true staying power; they continue to attract page views and engagement long after they’ve been published. With a clear signal from your audience on a topic or style of writing that worked, you can then parlay that into another piece of content on another distribution channel. If you wrote a great how to guide that went viral follow it up with a video that demonstrates the product or service mentioned in your article. If there’s a photo that gains popularity on Instagram why not write an article that picks up on what resonated with the audience.
You don’t necessarily want to beat a topic to death, but repurposing content is a great way provide valuable information to an audience you’re confident they are interested in knowing.
Write Content That Answers the Most Common Sales Questions
The internet is not a place that excels in flowery rhetoric, chances are when people do a search on the internet they’re looking for something specific and quick. If you take too long to get to the point of your article (and the point should be the call to action) then your reader is most likely going to bounce away from your site before even knowing what it was you wanted them to do. If your goal is to direct them toward a certain product, or get them to download a report, whatever it is, it has to be apparent from the beginning of the page. A useful device is to mention the purpose of the article from the first paragraph, and then to summarize it again at the end. This helps your call to action resonate and stand out in a way that hopefully increases your click through rate.
Always consider, what are the pain points keeping people from purchasing your product? This will give you ideas on what posts to write, what case studies to include, and what content overall will address and alleviate their concerns. You may not be selling directly to them at this point, but by breaking down any barriers, you’re opening the way for them to come back to you again in the future. This is why trust and authority are major components to Google’s algorithm, because it takes real life effort to address the needs of your audience.
Title Tags and Meta Data are two important elements that help search engines understand the content of your webpage. To increase visibility, it is important to optimize both these components. Here is a quick look at how you can go about doing this:
The title tag defines the title of the document. Search engines use them to show a summary for a given webpage. Your title tag has to be written in a way to ensure that the search engine spiders understand it.
A title tag is meant to be a concise and accurate description of the page. Not only is this useful for search engines, but it also ends up being beneficial for viewers. Generally, it is advisable to include your primary keyword, secondary keyword and brand name in the title tag.
What is the Importance of Title Tags for SEO
- Search Engine Results: Using keywords in the title tag ensures that search engines will highlight them on the results page. It gives your page greater visibility and a better click-through rate.
- Browsers: It is the title tags that generally show up on the browser’s tabs.
- Third-Party Websites: External sites will always use the title tag of the page as the link text.
Things to keep in mind with Title Tag Optimization
- Be sure that your title tags are of an optimum length. Generally, Google displays about 50-60 characters in its search results. So make sure that you do not exceed this length. But use of the characters judiciously and ensure that important keywords are typed in.
- The most important keywords should be placed close to the front of the title tag. This makes it more useful for rankings on results pages. Also, users are more likely to click if the necessary keywords are in front.
- Use your brand name sensibly. Sometimes people keep the brand name towards the end of the title tag which can be a smart approach. It depends on how well known the brand is. For recognizable brands it makes sense to keep the brand name in front. However, if the brand is not that famous, then it can be kept towards the end.
- Apart from SEO and keyword usage, always keep in mind that a compelling title is very important. It is a creative introduction that will draw a user to your brand. So make sure that your title tag projects a unique idea that interests the visitor.
Meta data is used to describe the page content within Google. It is the description of your page that will appear below the title tag. Though Meta data is not very important with respect to search engine rankings, it is through this that you can advertise your product. You can use it as a tool to let users know that the page contains whatever information they are looking for. The Meta data tags should be about 150 words. Again, it is important to make sure that it conveys meaningful details to the users.
Both Title tags and Meta data are important to increase traffic to your page. Use them cautiously and you will see much better click through rates.
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Content marketing is quickly becoming the preferred weapon of choice for businesses that are hungry for success. However, it has also been the demise of a few even though this could be because of their own making. Like any great idea, this marketing option has great benefits for those that understand it and for those that do not, it can lead to a series of problems. The latter can be avoided but only if you know how you can shape up your content marketing.
Your audience is most important when you are going to use content marketing. You should remember that the sole reason why you are looking to get highly ranked is to get more readers. Because of this, you should ensure that you create content that resonates with the readers. Understanding their personas, identifying their needs and finding solutions to their pain points are just some of the challenges that you need to understand in order to create content that is relevant and fit for your audience.
Having trust in something comes from the conviction of the one offering it. If you don’t sound like you believe it yourself, then there is no way that others will. You have to come up with content that you understand deeply and something that you love. Something that you can write that has an authoritative voice. Do not fake it. You are better off hiring someone that is more versed in the arena to articulate what you should say before you start writing.
It has been said that it is not what you say but how you say it. The same cannot be more emphasized when it comes to content marketing. How would you like your readers to view you; a professional who is all business or a professional who is more like the next door neighbor? You have to understand the needs of your readers. If they want a person that is purely professional and serious about what they do, then the attitude and tone of your content should reflect this. Consider the audience that you are trying to reach out to. This is the only way that you will be able to make sure that you create content that matches.
When it comes to content marketing, you have to be unique. If you post what your competitors are posting, then the readers might as well get the information from them. You have to stand out in some way that makes you the preferred option. Venture into including videos and infographics in your content or perhaps being more engaging with your readers. Explore your creativity and let it be the path to your success. Do not be afraid to experiment on new ideas and see how the people respond. As long as you have your creativity, content marketing can be the ultimate success for you.
To get readers, you need to appease search engines. To do this, your content needs to be SEO optimized. While this might not be a strategy that is directly targeted at your audience, it is one that will definitely get them coming and in big numbers. Do not forget to include things like keywords and Meta tags in your content.
It does not have to be rocket science. With the right information and direction, this is a marketing plan that is not only inexpensive but one that can get you staggering results over a long period of time.