Tag Archives: Web search engine

Directory Advertising

New Dmoz ?

New Dmoz ? (Photo credit: Cmic Blog)

Everyone is looking for ways to get their name out there and expand their business.  One such way is to get listed in Internet directories.  Just like everything else out there, there are advantages and disadvantages to this type of advertising which we will look at below.  If the advertising is free, it is not such a risk as if you are paying for the listing.

Advantages

One stop shop – easy to find you or a consultant in their local area

Organization – tend to be categorized by area or company so easier to locate a consultant

The more people that get listed on the site, the better resource the site is and therefore, more people will use it.

Most sites tend to have more information than just consultant listings so people stay on the site longer and are more likely to find your listing.

Better advertising – as many sites are paid, they want to get traffic in order to get advertisers and be able to charge more for advertising spots.

Depending on the site, you have the opportunity to say something about your business and list various contact information including your website.

Disadvantage

One stop shop – easy to contact several people at once – same company or competitor and people will likely book with the first one to reply.

There is a cost – monthly/yearly to be listed (usually)

For the money you invest, you may not get any results

The site may only allow a limited amount of vendors for an area (can be an advantage too)

There are a lot of directories out there and it can be expensive if you start getting listed at multiple ones

Only you can decide if directory advertising is the right method for you to advertise your business.  Depending on the investment involved, it is a good idea to do some research on the site itself.  See how easily you can find it in the search engines and ask friends what terms they would use to search and see where the site ranks.

You should be able to email the administrator of the site and ask for the various statistics before you commit to the advertisement.  If they are not willing to share the information, then you likely don’t want to advertise there.

 

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Social Media and Search Rankings: Keywords Are Your Friend!

You’re probably aware of how companies go to great lengths to appear on the first page of Google’s search results. High rankings usually mean increased traffic and better sales. Social sites like Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn are also great places to be noticed. Keywords — a tried and tested SEO element — are becoming an important part of social networking.

keyword blueprint

keyword blueprint (Photo credit: SocialMediaScience)

Optimizing a website with keywords and phrases helps search engine algorithms rank it. While significant for companies, individuals can also take advantage of keywords when starting a business or looking for a job. Companies have gone the distance to optimizing their websites, even hiring an SEO company to maximize success.

Can a Profile Be Search Optimized?

Major social sites are increasingly being used to find information on companies, for example by HR departments to vet candidates, and to search for experts in different fields. In effect, their search functions are often used in a similar way to larger search engines. As such, you need to decide which words will best optimize your profile.

The individual site can make all the difference in the keywords. On professional networking sites like LinkedIn, industry terms and job positions are better listed in their full form. You may, however, get away with abbreviating words and giving the actual product more priority on Facebook. Study the tone of the site, the competition, and the keywords most associated with your type of company before proceeding.

Is There a Smart Way to Add Keywords?

Most social media sites offer you a chance to write summaries, headlines, and status updates. All are excellent opportunities to include keywords; the ideal word in a headline, for example, will make your profile more visible on the social site and Google at the same time. Any chance you get to provide a description, like with a summary, is an opportunity to steam ahead of the competition.

Photos, a common thread with most social networks, are another focal point for profile optimization. When you write a caption, including keywords can help search algorithms index your profile. Plus, most people cannot resist looking at images and reading their captions, which enables you to hone in on your social media marketing. In addition, don’t forget about the words you place in status updates; getting this right can put you at the top of the search results.

When Keywords Are Not Your Friend

Basically the same rules apply to optimizing a website as a social media profile, as far as keyword stuffing and other questionable SEO tactics are concerned. Use your phrase too many times and in an unnatural way and the rankings will likely suffer. The search engine powers that be will strip your high rankings title, or eliminate your profile from any search queries.

Do your research and don’t jump into things too quickly. A good profile takes time anyway, so you can get a start on things while social media picks up steam as a marketing tool. Begin planning your strategy for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and even Google+ now and once the competition discovers the benefits, you’ll be ahead of the game.

Byline: Carly is an aspiring writer who currently works for a SEO company. She’s passionate about everything related to marketing, specifically Internet marketing. In her spare time she loves writing about anything and everything. She loves that blogging allows her to share her writing with people all over the world.

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Digital Marketing How To

a chart to describe the search engine market

Image via Wikipedia

This is a guest post by Lily

Because the field of digital marketing is still so new, many businesses find that it can be tempting to become overzealous in their online marketing strategy. Here are several misconceptions about how online marketing can promote your business, and ideas for what you should do instead.

1) SEO

What not to do:

When it comes to SEO, the list of “what not to do” might very well be longer than the list of “what to do!” Because Google and other search engines are constantly working to improve the algorithm they use in their searches, many old SEO tricks are becoming outdated day by day.

These search engines are much smarter than you think! Today, search engines can determine the “authority” of pages that are linking to other pages, which makes buying paid links and using other cheap methods to spread your business’ URL around less effective. Many of the SEO programs you can purchase for your business employ these tactics, which could end up penalizing your business and destroying your search engine rankings in the long run.

Similarly, while “keyword stuffing” was once believed to be a useful method of improving your business’ rankings, search engines have become too smart for this as well. In order to effectively use SEO for your business, you will have to keep track of how search engine algorithms are changing and keep your website up to date.

What to do instead:

The answer is truly quite simple: make your website as useful to your customers as possible, because search engines know the difference! Rankings are being determined more and more by usefulness of content, relevancy to the user, and whether or not the user had a good experience on that site.

Yes, search engines can now determine all of these things. The lesson here? Work on improving your business in general and the experience that your customers have with you, and simply try to keep your website consistent with these good business practices. Keep your content as up to date and informative as possible. This way, the high rankings will happen naturally.

2) Facebook

What not to do:

Using a Facebook page for your business is still a brand new concept to most business owners, and therefore it can be easy to abuse it. First of all, don’t use a personal profile for your business – they created the page feature for a reason.

Once you create a Facebook page, don’t ignore it! Make sure all the content is filled out so your users know how to reach you, or at least access your website. Lastly, don’t become overenthusiastic while logged into your business’ Facebook page. Keep it professional and in line with your business’ customer service standards.

What to do instead:

Keep your customers informed about your Facebook page and encourage them to “like” it. This is essentially the same as having an email list, except many users now check their Facebook profiles more often than their email addresses.

Update your Facebook page whenever there is a new development with your business.

If something noteworthy happens at your business that you would like the public to know, a Facebook page is the perfect place to talk about it.

Conduct surveys and take advantage of the other useful resources provided by Facebook specifically for businesses.

3) Twitter

What not to do:

There is an art to using, and not abusing, your business’ Twitter account. Instead of “tweeting” every single time something happens at your business, try to keep your posts relevant and interesting. Don’t use hashtags after every other word in your tweet – this just makes your tweets incomprehensible. Hashtags actually serve little to no function on twitter unless the word or phrase you are hashtagging is already trending or is something that people would definitely search for.

What to do instead:

Tweet about recent blog posts or recent developments at your business.

Interact with your followers. When people message you on Twitter, always respond enthusiastically. This is an extremely useful method of cultivating good relationships with new and existing customers and expanding your customer base to new areas.

Lily is a blog writer for Entrust Cash Advance, a trusted merchant cash advance company.

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