SEO

Search engine optimization, or SEO, has become a huge priority for marketers over the last few years. It’s easy to see why—higher search engine rankings result in more traffic, more leads, and higher sales and conversions. But how, exactly, does it work? How does adding keywords to various site elements improve your chances of ranking well in search engines? In the early days of the web, site owners could rank high in search engines by adding lots of search terms to web pages, whether they were relevant to the website or not. Search engines caught on and, over time, have refined their algorithms to favor high-quality content and sites. This means that SEO is now more complex than just adding the right words to your copy.

Keywords

One of the most basic aspects of SEO is including keywords in your title and header tags, meta descriptions, and body copy. These keywords are what tell search engines what your site and pages are about, and show them that your page is relevant when users search for those keywords. In the early days of SEO, many site owners saw this as an opportunity to plaster broad keywords all over their sites. Thankfully, search engines have gotten smarter since then. This means that you have to be a bit more careful when selecting and using keywords, but also that users are shown better results. So what kinds of keywords should you use?

Long-tail keywords

Think about the words and phrases you could use to sum up your site. For example, if your business is a car dealership, you may think that words like “cars” are worth trying to rank for. And while it would be great if all users who searched “cars” were directed to your site, it’s not that easy when there are thousands of other sites about cars. Instead, aim to include long-tail keywords, like “used car dealership.” Although there are likely far fewer people searching this phrase than “cars,” think about the intent of the searchers. People searching “cars” could be looking for a variety of things—photos, forums, the animated children’s film—but people searching for “used car dealership” are likely looking to buy a car. By focusing on longer keywords, you have a better chance of ranking well, and also attracting more qualified traffic.

Location-based keywords

In addition to including keywords that tell what your site is specifically about, you should also include location-based keywords. Google and other search engines have no way of knowing where your business is unless you tell them, so it’s important to include city and region names if you want your site to be shown to searchers in a particular area. Going off of the last example, if your dealership is located in Harrisburg, you would want to include the keyword “used car dealership in Harrisburg.” This is even more targeted, and will help your chances of being found by searchers nearby.

Content

In addition to simply including keywords, your site needs to have quality content to rank well. And although search engines can’t read your articles like humans, they can look at a few signals to determine whether or not your content is worth recommending to searchers.

Off-page signals/Backlinks

As with people, websites are judged by the company they keep. Your website is ranked based on the number of unique domain names linking back to your site, indicating how many site owners are referencing your content in their own. Let us know if we can help in this niche, We are SEO experts, and can help drive more traffic to your website.

Social Media Marketing

1. Inspire Your Audience With Visuals

First impressions are essential. We always say “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” but more times than not, visuals help us make decisions. In fact, Adobe’s Q4 2013 Index showed social media posts with images create 650% more engagement than text posts. adobe Q3 2013 index example People want visual content to help make sure their purchasing decisions are valid. When customers are able to view a product video or demo, they are 85% more likely to make a buying decision right there when compared to reading a text review. Master Instagram On social media, you have to use visuals to drive traffic to your website. One of the best avenues for visuals continues to be Instagram. With more than 80 million photos and videos shared each day, there’s a lot of competition. But when you’re able to create beautiful and engaging content on Instagram, businesses see a difference. According to data from Instagram, brands see the highest level of engagement (4.21%) on Instagram when compared to other social networks. instagram engagement example Nearly three-fourths of Instagram comments are made within two days of the post, which shows its high impact on on brand’s Instagram strategies. Provide awesome visuals that not only stand out, but speak volumes about you, your product and your story. The best visuals on social media tend to include:

  • Vibrant colors and well-designed layouts
  • High-level photography
  • Visuals telling stories
  • Visuals showing products or services in a new light
  • Consistently on point and well-planned

2. Make Your Content Easily Shareable

Every marketer or business owner by now should know the importance of being mobile friendly. Data from ComScore showed in 2013, 65% of time spent on social media was through a mobile device. Almost 40% of news content was read on a mobile device compared to a desktop. comscore graphic example Living in a mobile age means your content has to be easy to read, but more importantly, simple to share. Share buttons on mobile devices are critical to driving social media traffic. Neil Patel explained it by stating the harder it is for your audience to share your content, the less likely they will. Use Social Media Plugins & Buttons Get readers to share your content by using social media plugins. There are various plugins that can help you spread your content via social media much easier. One of the avenues is using click to Tweet, which allows readers to highlight parts of your content to share on social without leaving the page. social media buttons example Secondly, you have to include social media buttons that are mobile friendly and don’t distract your readers while scrolling. According to Slate and Chartbeat, most readers only make it halfway down page, which means you have to optimize where you want to place your social media buttons. Heatmap example Use free heat map plugins like SumoMe (for WordPress) to see where people are clicking the most on your blog content. Once you have a good idea of an area with high click volume, add your social share buttons there to immediately increase traffic.

3. Know When Your Audience Is Listening

The key to building follower count is all within consistency. The more consistent you are with your social media publishing, the higher chance you have at being seen. Once you start to see a spike in social media traffic, you shouldn’t slow down on your posting. Keeping a daily publishing schedule is crucial to effective social media traffic building. Make sure you know roughly how much to post to each site and at what times. Constant Contact and Union Metrics provided some insights on how much to post:

  • Post on Facebook 3-10 times a week
  • Tweet at least five times a day
  • Instagram around 1.5 times a day
  • Post on LinkedIn 2-5 times a week
  • Post on Google+ 3-10 times a week
Use a Social Media Calendar To make sure you’re up to speed on every channel, try to fill up your social media calendar as much as possible. Once you build a full schedule, you’ll have a clear overview of your publishing habits, schedule and tactics. Optimizing your post time through a social media calendar can be the difference to seeing a change in your social media traffic.

4. Research Your Competitors

Finding out how well your competitors are doing is a tried and true marketing strategy. The same notion should be in place for your social strategy. Social media competitive analysis simply helps you dissect your social media traffic. You can easily locate key performance metrics and see how similar audiences respond to competitors’ social posts. Try to get as much insights from your competitors first. This give you a better idea what it takes to build an audience on social. You never want to directly copy your competitors, but the analysis can shape your own strategy. Try to figure out things such as:

  • Successful post times and days
  • Most engaging social channels
  • How often they respond to their comments
  • Types of content published (images, videos, quotes, etc.)
You can completely surprise yourself with what a little bit of digging will tell you about your industry. Know Exactly What’s Engaging Followers As we’ve discussed, engagement is absolutely essential to social media. With competitive analysis, you have to know how your rivals successfully engage with their followers. Try to what type of content is driving the mont comments, clicks, impressions and shares. This can give you a better idea into your own social media content planning.

5. Continuously Engage With Your Audience

Keeping your audience engaged is one of the most important aspects of social media management. Data from our 2016 Q2 Sprout Social Index showed brands send 23 messages for only one consumer response. This means too much self promotion and not enough engagement. Before you shrug off talking to your audience, consider this:
1 in 3 people go to competitors when ignored on social 34% of people choose social media as their top choice for customer care An average of 957 messages in Q1 2016 require a response (up 18% from Q1 2015) Only 11% of people receive replies from brands.
While you don’t need to spend every waking moment waiting to answer your customers, you have a duty to provide the best customer experience. And that could be as simple as replying back to customer questions or concerns.

Web Design

1. Maintain Dynamic Website Content

A website should consist of dynamic, changing content. Dynamic websites almost always perform better in search rankings than static sites. To do this, add a press page or news section to your site and make sure the content includes your keywords.

2. Involve Your Programmer

The things you can’t see on a website can be just as important as the content you can. Since most of us aren’t programmers, make sure to tell your web developer what keywords you would like to focus on. He or she can help incorporate these into the structural attributes of a site, such as page titles and website addresses, furthering your competitive edge. Few programmers double as SEO professionals, so expect to approach them armed with information and specific directives.

3. Liaise With Key Online Influencers

As part of an off-page SEO campaign, it is beneficial to liaise with key influencers and bloggers in your industry. Encourage influencers and voices in the community to write about what you are doing, and link back to your site. Articles linking back to your site help increase your search engine rankings. You might consider writing a guest post for a blog that covers your industry.

4. Architect Your Website For Mobile

A website should be designed to be responsive. This type of site will acclimate properly on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. This allows audiences to easily view and interact with a site from a mobile device.

5. Incorporate Smart Text and Imagery in Web Design

When developing a new website or considering a refresh to an existing site, keep in mind the importance of incorporating key text, especially on the homepage. Text still remains king when improving a site’s search engine rankings. Flash website designs are almost obsolete at this point, however, powerful imagery is essential. Beware of splashy intro pages, though.

6. Consider Pay-for-Click Advertising

Paid services like Google AdWords or Yahoo Search Ads are another way you can drive traffic to a website. These services allow an unprecedented degree of microtargeting. Marketers can direct advertisements to prospective clients based on their query, and only pay for the people who click through to visit their website. While you only pay for the clicks you accrue, a cautious approach is recommended. It may be best to hire a professional to handle this aspect of your digital campaign, since the bidding formula is complicated and Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo have a lot to gain from poorly conceived bidding. Another option is to take advantage of third-party advertising platforms to run image-based advertisements on multiple websites at once. Google has a Display Network where you select a website for online advertising and then set your maximum bid for each click. If there’s remnant space available and they accept your bid through the automated process, you can run banner-style advertisements on the selected site.

7: Utilize Video On Your Website

As more people seek multimedia experiences online, video is appearing higher in search results. Consider hosting a video on your site, whether it’s an introductory or how-to type video. The video can be added to external platforms such as YouTube to maximize exposure. With constant oversight and some tweaking, your digital marketing campaign can lead to increased website traffic and can help get new business leads in the door.