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Should You Use a Mobile Web Design for Your Business Website?

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Forty percent of those using mobile devices abandon mobile phone web sites if it is difficult to navigate, according to a study by Compuware. Your online business just can’t afford to have such a high bounce rate. Not to mention that an ugly mobile web design makes the wrong impression on customers, especially if you […]

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Penguin 4.0 FAQs – Here is everything we know so far.

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

I have been getting a lot of questions about Penguin 4.0. This article will serve as a guide to everything we know on Penguin 4.0. I’ll update it as more information becomes available. Last update: October 13, 2016 When did Penguin 4.0 launch? The announcement for Penguin 4.0 happened on Friday, September 23, 2016. However, it sounds like parts of this new Penguin algorithm were put into […]

The post Penguin 4.0 FAQs – Here is everything we know so far. appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

Hubspot Alternatives – CMS, Blog and Email

by jtroia @ Internet Marketing Consultants | Video Marketing | Greystack Digital

In our first deep dive into tools that could be used as Hubspot alternatives, we are going to take a look at the CMS and blogging platform as well as the email marketing tools. CMS and Blogging Alternative A content management system and blogging platform is the foundation of your website.  With a content management […]

Putting Peoples Names On Web Pages

by @ Internet Law and Ethics

Illustration Versus Photography in Web Design: A Comparison

by Rob Toledo @ The Deep End Design

Imagery in web design plays a significant role in communicating a message and dictating an overall tone of a site. The options for using imagery are infinite, but one major choice a designer makes is whether to use abstract illustration or realistic photography. The decision lies in which type of imagery best fits with a […]

The post Illustration Versus Photography in Web Design: A Comparison appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Facebook Ads Now Ready for Primetime

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

For years Facebook struggled to offer ads that would bring more business to companies, and until about a year ago, they failed. But things have changed… Facebook Ads now are often a great way to promote your service or product … Continue reading

Win a Free Copy of “Type & Grids,” a Graphic Design Portfolio Theme

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

I was recently contacted by Jeremiah Shoaf, a very talented theme developer who has designed a fantastic new HTML5 theme. It is called Type & Grids, and it’s specifically made for freelance designers and studios for use as an online portfolio. But it gets even better! We are going to be giving away 3 free […]

The post Win a Free Copy of “Type & Grids,” a Graphic Design Portfolio Theme appeared first on The Deep End Design.

3 Questions

by ian @ good karma

Join Us: http://mindfulmarketplace.com

The post 3 Questions appeared first on good karma.

Is Cause Marketing Different?

by @ Nonprofits on the Web

How Consistent Is Your Marketing?

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

Marketing is an ongoing process and many businesses lose sight of this. If all is going well and business is good, why would you market? The real question you have to ask yourself is why would you stop?

The post How Consistent Is Your Marketing? appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

Low Quality Content and Content Farms

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

All too often, low-quality websites pushing poor content have repeatedly appeared on the first couple of pages for search results. This isn’t what people want, no matter what they are using the Internet to do. Despite the fact that people …

Progressive Web Apps Are - Officially - The Next Big Thang

by @ All Forums

Back in February I commented

Google's other 'big' push is with Progressive Web Apps, which is definitely interesting and fun to play with. However, it is still an Android only mobile affair. Unless Apple gets on board all those high buying iOS folk may be a drag on developers' interest/uptake.

Well, Apple has apparently bit the bitter pill (or Hades has frozen) and are getting on board PWAs: Service Workers land in WebKit, clearing way for better in-browser applications by Thomas Claburn, The Register, 04-August-2017.

* Bug 175115: Add SW IDLs and stub out, WebKit Bugzilla.
* Attachment #317095: Patch for bug #175115, WebKit Bugzilla


So what has been a fun little project to play with in my !spare? time has gone right up to the very top of my 'to do' list. With this change of heart 80% of the need for mobile native apps began to fade away.

 

 

And a whole new door of site/business opportunity opens... along with a platforms worth of new accessibility, usability, UX et al concerns.

14 Ways to Build Your Platform on a BootStrap Budget

by ian @ good karma

Grow your online agency income by 200% in Sept: http://goodkarma.link/launchitlocal 14 ways to grow your platform on a bootstrap budget: These are all ideas for building an “authority” site and establishing the appearance of expertise, simply by having taking the proactive step of BUILDING something in the niche, market/industry/vertical or local area you want to […]

The post 14 Ways to Build Your Platform on a BootStrap Budget appeared first on good karma.

Five Useful Apps For Learning HTML5

by Rachel Sanders @ The Deep End Design

Let’s face it. We’re all still getting used to HTML5. There are a bazillion HTML5 reference books, but who has the time to read them? HTML5 reference websites and mobile apps can make your life easier by providing you with critical information about the new markup language when you need it. If you’re a web […]

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Mary Meeker�S 2017 Internet Trends Report

by @ Site Planning and Preparation

7 Online Marketing Strategy Mistakes You Should Avoid

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Taking the time to create a detailed marketing strategy before beginning to promote your brand online will help you convey a more powerful message and get higher conversion rates. What’s more, it will give you a sense of direction and make it easier for you to track your progress. When defining your marketing strategy plan, […]

The post 7 Online Marketing Strategy Mistakes You Should Avoid appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

6 Reasons You Should Consider Facebook Advertising

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

We love to hate Facebook, but the truth is, they do a pretty good job of optimizing user experience while providing a very affordable and effective marketing tool for marketers. As they continue to refine their algorithm to manage users feeds we’re seeing smaller numbers of views and interactions from our page posts. You can […]

Your Web Design–Love it or Hate it?

by Tina Reed Johnson @ Tina Reed Johnson

Web Design Tips to Consider when Redesigning or Developing your Website Are you compatible or do you need a new Web design?  Here are some quick, but heart-felt points on Web design if your Website is wearing an old suit.  Cause we want you to love your site–not cheat on it! Come on, give your […]

The post Your Web Design–Love it or Hate it? appeared first on Tina Reed Johnson.

Shelley Pringle Joins AWM – Regional VP, Canada

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

I’m very proud to announce that Shelley Pringle has joined the AWM team as Regional VP for Canada. Shelley brings a wealth of marketing experience and expertise to the financial community, including project management, content marketing, social media marketing, and PR. Advisor Web Marketing Now in Canada Shelley is located on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, […]

The post Shelley Pringle Joins AWM – Regional VP, Canada appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Welcome To The Nonprofits On The Web Forum

by @ Nonprofits on the Web

Rip A Website

by @ Web Site Design

Top Citation Sources for Orthodontists and Dentists

by Orthopreneur Internet Marketing @ Orthopreneur Internet Marketing Solutions

What is a citation? No, not the kind you receive for parking too close to a fire hydrant; the kind of citation that you hear about when listening to Internet marketing presentations or talking to an SEO specialist. A citation for your business on the Internet is any mention of your business name and street Read More

How Does My Mobile Website Appear In Your Mobile Device?

by @ Cross-Browser Device Assessment Panel

10 Infographic Vector Packs That Will Inspire You

by Danny Groner @ The Deep End Design

As more people are getting their news and information on the run these days, data visualization has emerged as a growing form of communication to satisfy those who don’t have the time to dive into data. Along with the challenges of sharing information more quickly and effectively in bite-sized chunks, though, come opportunities for designers […]

The post 10 Infographic Vector Packs That Will Inspire You appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Inbound Marketing vs Outbound Marketing: Differences as Defined by Titan

by Sara Lippert @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

If you are looking for a definition of what types of marketing tactics are strictly inbound and which are outbound, you may not find one. As we’ve researched other “expert” opinions on the matter, we have discovered many gray areas on these tactics. The deciding factor seems to rest not in what the tactic is […]

The post Inbound Marketing vs Outbound Marketing: Differences as Defined by Titan appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

How to Close the Digital Talent Gap in the Age of Digital Transformation?

by Maciej Fita @

The increasing penetration of the Internet, mobile devices, social media, and analytics tools has created plenty of job opportunities for digital marketers. But this growing demand has a negative side too: there’s a massive lack of professionals with strong digital skills.   The reason? Digital transformation is taking over the world way too fast. According
Read more

The Super Simple 5-Step Marketing Plan for Financial Marketers

by Shelley Pringle @ Advisor Web Marketing

A marketing plan is a must-have for successful financial marketers, including investment advisors, accountants and insurance specialists. Sure, you can likely muddle along without one. However, if you want to grow your practice and make money while you’re doing it, you need a plan. If you’re having trouble getting started, simplify the process: Write for […]

The post The Super Simple 5-Step Marketing Plan for Financial Marketers appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Biquitous Website and SEO Audit:  Proliability.com [Video]

Biquitous Website and SEO Audit: Proliability.com [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

I want to welcome you to the Biquitous Breakdown.

This is a special real-life series that analyzes and audits one website's Internet presence and SEO strategy in order to provide powerful takeaways for your website.

In other words, you're going to get an exclusive over-the-shoulder look at critical mistakes other companies are making and my recommendations for fixing them in a live video format.

My goal is to be honest in my assessments and provide that particular company with a concrete action plan to fix what's wrong, for their benefit and -- by extension -- your company's website as well.

The breakdown will focus 4 major areas:

  • First Impressions: Overall analysis of the website's look, feel, targeting, usability, and more
  • Second Impressions: Overall analysis of the website's social media and Web 2.0 presence
  • Top Level SEO: Analysis of the website's keywords, navigation, rankings, competition, backlink profile, content, and more
  • Page Level SEO: Analysis of individual page structure, tags, usability, and other details

I'll then provide a 3-step action plan for the biggest/fastest improvement to address any issues that I find.

This edition is going to focus on Proliability.com, a professional liability insurance company.

Proliability has some problems with sparse content, lack of a social media presence and -- most disturbing to me -- the possibility that they are paying for links, as well as other issues that need to be addressed immediately.

Let's get right to it:

(Click the "play" button to watch the video)

Here is the full transcript of the video:

Hello, this is Chris Fernandez, the Founder and CEO of Biquitous. And I want to welcome you to the Biquitous website and SEO breakdown, a special series that analyzes and audits one website's internet presence and SEO strategy in order to provide powerful takeaways for your website.

In other words, you're going to get an exclusive over-the-shoulder look at critical mistakes other companies are making and my recommendations for fixing them in a live video format. My goal is to be honest in my assessments and provide that particular company with a concrete action plan to fix what's wrong, for their benefit and, by extension, your company's website as well.

This series is going to analyze each website for four major characteristics.

First, I'm going to look at first impressions, the overall analysis of the website's look, feel, their targeting, trust factor, social proof, ease of use, professionalism, conversion factors and call to action.

Then, I'm going to look at second impressions. I'm going to look at an overall analysis of a website's social media presence, their blog and any other web 2.0 interaction that they have on their website.

Then, I'm going to roll up my sleeves and look at SEO. We're going to start with top-level SEO, looking at the overall website's keywords, navigation, their rankings, competition, back-link profile, content and other factors.

Then, we're going to dig one step deeper and look at page-level SEO for the structure, tags, and usability of on-page ranking factors.

After all is said and done, I'm going to give you a three step action plan for the biggest and fastest improvement for this company's website and SEO strategy, that you can then also use for your website.

So, let's get right into it.

So, today we're analyzing proliability.com. This is a professional liability insurance company, a subsidiary of Marsh, and they have this website that caters to professional liability insurance, malpractice insurance for different audiences and targets audiences in terms of the professionals that they're looking to target. Anything from dentists to pharmacists, real estate agents, etc., etc.. And they also do errors and omissions insurance for real estate professionals and other agents as well.

So, they want to be the number one provider of liability insurance in their target market. So, they asked me to analyze their website and agreed to have it for this series. So I'm going to take a look first at my first impressions.

What do I think when I come to this website?

Let's look at trust factors, the navigation and what the website itself looks like, what it's doing right and what it's doing wrong. So, the first thing I notice when I get to the website is, that it looks a bit cheesy. Now, this is nothing personal against Pro Liability, but when I come here it has cheesy stock photography. It's got no personal warmth to it. I don't feel a connection to this website. It feels cold, stale and more than anything, it feels like a landing page. I know it's a main website domain, but it feels like a professional landing page.

So, to me, this feels like something that was just put here to rank highly in the search engines. Now, I am biased, right? I'm a search engine optimization expert and internet marketing expert. So, to me, this is what I see when I see it. Maybe other folks, when they land here, they don't think that but there's something not right about this site.

When people come here and they look at it, it doesn't give them that warm feeling of trust, of authority, of being a real site that has great content, that cares about them, that's going to help them find the right insurance for them. It just has overly optimized sections. Look at it. They even bolded professional liability insurance, and I will warn that Google is going to start penalizing for over-optimized pages and sites, and this is a prime example of an over-optimized website and page. So, that's the first thing, warmth and it needs to cater more to being personable.

So, now I want to take a look at the actual navigation and ease of use of the site.

So, the site doesn't give any warm fuzzy feeling, and I know that it's kind of cold. Great. So, now can I find what I need?

Well, when I go to the drop-down menus, boy, that is absolutely daunting. There's a lot of stuff here. Now, I understand that you guys want to rank for this. Sites usually want to rank for all kinds of categories and get that SEO value. So, if I click, for instance, on athletic trainers, there's also a page level that, if we look at this, is athletic trainers.

This should be catered towards personal trainers, not athletic trainers. Now, I understand that they have a deal with NATA, N-A-T-A, which is an association of the National Athletic Trainers Association.

So, I understand that that's the nomenclature that they use, athletic trainers, but most personal training certification bodies use personal trainer. So, if I was online, I would never search for athletic trainer's insurance. I would search for personal trainer's insurance.

So, that's that kind of thing. Pro Liability should look at their nomenclature for their categories. Are you using the right words that you're going to attract for these pages? So, you're doing your title tags and all the on-page stuff as well. Again, when I come to this page, it has some generic picture here, athletic trainers. It's overly optimized.

Where's the value of this page? Why should I link to you? If I'm another site, or let's say I'm an athletic trainer and I'm on Google or Google+ or Facebook, why should I recommend this page to my friends? Why? Give a compelling reason to do so. Make it so that when I come to this site I feel welcomed, I feel like this is a valuable site that's helping me find what I want.

In other words, what does Pro Liability stand for? If I go back to your homepage, what's your unique selling proposition? What makes you different than all the other insurance companies out there? I'm sure you have some. Let's hear them. Let's see that front and center. Let's make this more warm and inviting.

Next, is content. There is no content. Now, I spoke with the folks at Pro Liability and they say that something that they want to work on, is adding a blog, adding some content. So, I would say get on that immediately, because there's nothing here where I can subscribe. There's a little bit of social media stuff down here but that's just to share stuff.

Where's your newsletter? Where's your, you know, something to keep in touch with me? Give me some way to keep in touch with folks before I leave.

And finally, there's this "My Account" thing at the top here. Either make that bigger or get rid of it entirely, because when I click on that, it brings up this page here, where I can log into my account. This right here is very difficult to understand and read. I don't have a username. Do I register? Oh, there's the register.

Now, there's some issues with the IT department, the marketing department all need to be on the same page and there's buy-in that needs to take place. Pro Liability's a very big company and Marsh is a very large company, and so, there's a lot of buy-in that needs to happen from the top level down. But things as simple as the copyright being 2008, customer service number being all the way at the bottom, having this old "Powered by Velocity" logo. These are all trust factors that make me kind of doubt that this site is legitimate, and it's stuff that you need to work on in addition to being difficult to use and not user-friendly at all.

I wanted to do a one-to-one comparison between Pro Liability and eHealth.com, which helps people find health insurance. To show that you can do this on a large scale and be more warm and inviting and have a much more better site that also caters to what you're trying to do.

So, if you look at eHealth, they do all the things right that you're supposed to do. The navigation's much simpler and cleaner. Look at that. It's much more inviting. You have pictures of real folks. It's not as generic. You've got new stuff with the video, all kinds of goodies here, that should be used as an example to Pro Liability as what can be done, and eHealth is a public company and they also make great content.

So, I know that Pro Liability had a problem with their content and creating, they called it boring content. The rule of thumb is content is never boring for the target audience that you're trying to attract. So, if we're talking about website design SEO, look at what we're doing right now, that's not boring to you guys out there. So, boring content is in the eye of the beholder. There's no such thing as boring content.

If you're worried about that, pick topics like eHealth Insurance does where they add commentary on what's going on in the world today for health insurance, like the Obama Care stuff that's going through the Supreme Court right now. All those kind of things, eHealth makes comments on that, they release press releases and content based on current events and things like that to make their content viral, so people share it that care about those issues. I think Pro Liability can do a lot of that same kind of stuff to increase their content.

So, now let's look at Second Impressions.

A second impression is a website's social media, web 2.0 presence and blog. The good news is, that's not going to take very long because Pro Liability has no social media presence, no blog and no web 2.0 interaction. So, I don't even need to spend time on this because, you know as a company in today's world, you're dead in the water if you do not have social media or web 2.0 sharing in some way and fashion.

So, that's something that Pro Liability needs to get immediately, as part of their overall refresh and site design enhancements. That's what they need to do and they need to jump on that immediately.

So, now let's move on to the SEO side of things.

So, the good news about doing these kinds of analyses is that each site and every single company is different. Different in what they're trying to achieve, different in their web presence, different in their SEO profile, and different in my advice to what you need to do to fix things. So, for Pro Liability let's first take a look at their overall metrics in terms of their trust and page rank and those kinds of things, which I like to start with to do a top down view of everything.

So, using SEOmoz, I did a quick rank check of the three keywords that Pro Liability wanted to rank for. With "professional liability insurance" probably being the number one keyword that they want to rank for. So, if we take a quick look about where they're ranking there, they're doing very well so far in the number three position for "professional liability insurance."

So, that's very good because that's their number one keyword that they want to rank for. For "liability insurance," they're not showing up at all in the top ten. And then for "malpractice insurance," they're showing up just now on the first page at number ten. So, the recommendation I would give there is, "Hey, do you really want to go after 'malpractice insurance' or do you just want to go after your top two, which is 'professional liability insurance' and 'liability insurance' and some offshoot keywords of those as well. And get rid of this malpractice or make a different website for malpractice because it's kind of diverting some of the keyword juice.

So, I then wanted to look at Pro Liability's back-link discovery, and this is basically how many sites are linking back to proliability.com.

This is a big determining factor in where you rank in the search engines, in fact, that's the biggest determining factor in how you rank in the search engines. And this is a view over the last five years and you can see that Pro Liability has had a steady increase, or actually it's been pretty steady in terms of their back-link discovery. In other words, not much. This is a monthly view, so monthly this is what they've been getting.

You can see that in the last six to eight months they went absolutely nuts in terms of getting back-links and discovery and referring domains. So, let's take a look at that now on a ccumulative view and you'll see over the last five years how they've grown.

So you can see here the back-links were very steady took a big growth here in '08, continued through '09 and it then it really exploded last year. Then over here you're going to see a nice steady stream of referring domain names. Now, this is individual domain names that are referring traffic and having a back-link to Pro Liability. Now, this is interesting, I want to show something here. So, what I'm going to do is I'm going to go to two-year view of this same index. And what I want to show here is if you look at the referring domain name discovery over the last two years, it's gone from about 600 to about 1,200 which is about double.

However, the back-link discovery has gone from 5,000 to 20,000 with a big bulk of that coming in the last, I'd say year or so. What does that tell me? It tells me Pro Liability's getting a lot of back-links, however, they're not getting them from a wide and diverse set of domain names.

So, this could be a problem for unnatural looking link profiles and that kind of thing which I'm going to talk about in just one second.

So, what I wanted to look at really quick now, was the anchor text that's being used to link to the Pro Liability website. And what I found was out of the top thousand referring anchor texts I found, that the majority of them said "liability insurance" and then "Marsh liability insurance," the bulk of them.

So, if Pro Liability wants to go after the term “liability insurance,” they're going to have to need to step up their game in terms of getting back-links and getting a more natural profile. Because what's happening is I believe the reason that they're not ranking as high and work they need to do is because their back-link profile does not look natural.

All their anchor text has keywords in it. If you look everything says 'liability insurance,' 'Marsh liability insurance' or some variation thereof. there's no click here there's no click for more information there's no just what their domain name they just have thirty back-links with just proliability.com, thirty out of a thousand. That does not look natural. So I want to warn Pro Liability with regards to over SEOing their offsite link-building and their on-page link building which we already talked about.

Now, I want to talk about maybe some paid links that Pro Liability has, and I don't want to get them in trouble but I want to address it because it's very important. Let's take a look at that right now.

One of the websites that I found a back-link to Pro Liability from, was from this website here, Middle Tennessee State University, in a section that they call "recreation and leisure services" and as you see here Pro Liability's at the bottom under “recreational therapy links” stuck with “American Therapeutic Recreation Association,” “National Recreation and Parks Association,” and here's “liability insurance”. I don't know, that's a little grey to me. Looks a little bit paid. Pro Liability should be very aware of what's going on there and making sure they're not paying for links.

Let me show you another example. This example, this is from a website called Money Cake, now Pro Liability is getting tons of links from Money Cake and I wondered why. Why are they getting so many links from Money Cake? Well, I found it. The reason is they're getting a link from Money Cake because they're on their blogroll for Marsh liability insurance, which is a direct link to proliability.com. Now, I don't know about you, but a blogroll means you link to other people's blogs that are about those topics and if you look, there's payday loans and all kinds of other things in here. This looks iffy to me guys, this looks like a paid link. I just want to warn you about this, I'm not trying to call you out or get you in trouble, but Google frowns upon this kind of stuff, so this is another example of what I think may be a paid link. I could be wrong, but I'm just pointing it out.
Let me show you one more quick example.

In this final example, this is from the Orange County BAR Association and this seems to be a sponsors section right over here that has 'Marsh Insurance' a link to Marsh which goes to proliability.com. So, this out of all the paid links or the potential paid links that I've just shown is probably the most legitimate one because you're on a sponsored section here. So, this is more, maybe more acceptable and more legit than some of the other ones because it's a known sponsored section. But this looks like a paid link and if this is part of the link-building strategy that you guys used in the last half of last year that showed that big explosion of links that I just showed in the other screenshot. Be very careful this could backfire on you and prevent you from ranking high, especially with Google Panda just being released.

So, I just wanted to go over some other quick little sort of housecleaning, housekeeping details for Pro Liability to cover.

Of course, this breakdown, this audit is not comprehensive I don't have the time in a short little video like this to show everything that's wrong with their website and what to do but I'm trying to hit some big points that they need to address. So, let's finish off with some quick housekeeping things that I think they should take care of.

And what I noticed is when I look, aside from the site being overly SEO optimized, which we've covered already, it needs to tone that down, it needs to be more real, and all that good stuff but aside from that, I looked at the code on the backend. Just did a quick view of it and I found a couple different things.

First of all, there's this flash pack navigation system and I noticed that on the Marsh or the Pro Liability page when you have your dropdown menu this is flash. Now I want to warn you guys, or JavaScript, excuse me, Java, I want to make sure that search engines can crawl this. Because sometimes they have difficulty crawling these navigation elements if they're not done in the right way.

Have your team, your programming team, make sure that this can be crawled and indexed by Google. I think it is, I think its working fine but I want you guys to make sure of that. That's the first thing I noticed. Next thing I noticed was there's no canonicalization of your pages. So you need to have the tag that says rel equals canonical on all your pages so if there's ever duplicate content, Google knows which page is the right page it also serves you for your home page so if you have a home page for instance that has a trailing slash, or just says ".com," or ".com/," or without the "www," if it just says "proliability" without the "www," like that, it'll go to the right page and it won't be seen as duplicate content by Google and other search engines.

So, I also wanted to talk just briefly about your title tags I know that in a lot of your pages they're very bland. And you may want to think about including some professional branding in your title tags so professional liability insurance, malpractice insurance, and maybe you stick up here something, you know, where it says proliability.com, you know, like that, and have the little pipe or hyphen there at the top just to sort of brand your page.

Just to make it more search engine friendly and more people friendly so it looks like a company rather than just having cold keywords with nothing else, same thing for your descriptions the description tags look OK and then I noticed keywords, you guys actually use keywords?

I mean, come on now. I noticed that you don't just use a couple keywords but like a hundred different keywords, look at this. This is ridiculous. While keywords may not help your ranking anymore search engines don't use them anymore for ranking. They can hurt your ranking. In fact Bing just came out recently and said that they look at the keywords tag but to look for spam and spammy websites. So you're telling Bing “hey come look at my spammy website and penalize me because I've got all these keywords.” Get rid of your keywords on all your pages as well part of just this housekeeping, kind of cleansing process.

And last but not least is page rank leakage. If you have way too many categories coming from your home page to other pages, you will lose page rank. And each one of those pages will rank less and less in Google because you're passing it on, your initial site's page rank value to too many different pages. So you may want to think about consolidating some categories or doing something else to help the navigation so you don't lose that SEO value. OK? So that is some quick and dirty SEO top level stuff.

Let's look at page level SEO stuff.

(Page level SEO transcription missing)

So, now I want to give you a three step website and SEO action plan for proliability.com.

First, Pro Liability needs to redesign the site for user friendliness, warmth, their unique selling proposition, and not just a cold stale landing page for insurance. Proliability.com wants to be the number one provider of liability insurance. Well, there's two ways to do that. You can have the cheapest prices or the best, most user-friendly experience and customer service. They need to tweak their website for either value proposition, but pick one and run with it.

Second, they need to execute a complete content, social media and inbound marketing strategy immediately. They'll do that by taking a ground up approach and getting to know their end customer. Who they are, what do they want? And how can proliability.com help them? Pro Liability then needs to include a blog and make the content engaging, entertaining, timely, but most of all, shareable. Then, the company needs to direct a complete social media strategy immediately and start talking to their customers, and potential customers.

Third, the website, metatags, the content, the navigation, URL's are too optimized. That worries me a little bit. Pro Liability might get penalized with Google's upcoming changes to their search algorithm. They should be very careful. Also, if they are they should stop paying for links immediately. And if they aren't then construct a more natural back-link profile with links that don't contain any keywords at all mixed with partial and full matched anchored text links to different pages on their website, which they're not doing right now.

Then, with their content, start utilizing inbound marketing and legitimate link outreach, to improve their overall SEO profile.

The bottom line, proliability.com has the potential to be a much larger player in the professional liability insurance game. With more attention to creating something of value and engaging their end-user with a more friendly and easier to use website, they'll start to see not only their traffic and rankings improve but more importantly for the company, their leads and sales increase as well.

This is Chris Fernandez and I really hope you enjoyed this webinar and got a lot of value from it. To gain access to even more great content like this that will help you systematically fix what's wrong with your internet marketing strategy and gain a critical leg up on your competition, I invite you to read the latest blog post on the Biquitous blog and follow us through whatever social media channel you prefer or receive updates sent directly to your inbox. Thanks so much.

 ...Read More >>

A Look at the Keyword Research Tool Universe in 2015

by rand @ Rand's Blog

In 2015, I’ve been pretty obsessed with keyword research and the tools web marketers are using to do it. I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’m working with Russ Jones (after our SERPscape acquisition) and a small team at Moz to build something in this space (and it’s now live! Moz’s new keyword research […]

The post A Look at the Keyword Research Tool Universe in 2015 appeared first on Rand's Blog.

9 Best FREE WordPress SEO Plugins – Interactive PDF Infographic

by Earl Netwal @ Minneapolis Internet Marketing Consultant

Search Engine Optimization (aka SEO) is key to ranking higher on search engine results pages where more customers can find your business.  We’ve dug in and created an interactive infographic PDF that gives you the 9 best free WordPress SEO plugins with a brief overview of what each plugin does.  Images link directly to each […]

Why Your Website Needs An SSL Certificate

by Chelsey Dugger @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

If you are on Google Chrome, pause what you are doing right now to look at the URL of this page. See the green lock that says “secure”? It may be easy to overlook and appear unimportant, but the reality is that lock may be more powerful than you think. So why is it there? […]

The post Why Your Website Needs An SSL Certificate appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

Austin SEO and Internet Marketing Consulting Service | Return On Now

Austin SEO and Internet Marketing Consulting Service | Return On Now


Return On Now

Return On Now, based out of Austin, TX, provides Internet Marketing Consulting, Coaching, & Training for SEO, Social Media, Content Marketing, and SEM / PPC

Turner Marketing Consulting

Turner Marketing Consulting


Turner Marketing Consulting

Web Marketing Solutions

Surprising the Snobs- Big Names that use WordPress

by Owen Radford @ The Deep End Design

WordPress is an incredible platform: versatile, easy to use for all but the newest of site owners & free. This has lead to it being immensely popular and like pretty much everything that’s popular it has its detractors. You may have experienced this, as I have, over the last few years. In this article I’ll […]

The post Surprising the Snobs- Big Names that use WordPress appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How to Use DMCA to Stop Others Using Your Content

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Everyone knows that when it comes to content, one of the most important factors is producing something unique. Publishing duplicate content will have a negative impact on your online marketing plan and could earn Google penalties which will affect your search engine rankings. To avoid this, online...

A “smart-start” guide to strategic marketing

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting

Do you love “starting” something new like trying out a new app.  Sure, its simple to download, install, and begin using an app; but the “fun” can quickly die-out when you lack a plan or process for how you’ll use it.
In a similar way, many of Autumn’s B2B clients are ready to start a new strategic marketing, a branding campaign, and some have existing digital marketing strategies in place. However, when these clients located in Milwaukee, Chicago, or around the country,  lack a thoughtful plan, their efforts ...

What Graphic Designers Can Learn From Dr. Seuss

by Jacob Williams @ The Deep End Design

I had a conversation with a wonderful lady the other day about an issue she was having with a consultant. She felt completely ripped off. She felt she’d purchased a truckload of snakeoil. I contacted the consultant and found that she was right. The consultant was a self-help guru. One that talks about the “value” […]

The post What Graphic Designers Can Learn From Dr. Seuss appeared first on The Deep End Design.

What Are Your Favorite Books For Business, Web Dev, Digital Marketing?

by @ All Forums

An SEO friend asked for recommendations for favorite business books on her Facebook page and it turned into a great discussion packed with recommendations. I wrote down a list of new books from it.

 

I have time to read more while healing from my knee replacement surgery (next one is 9/18) so I got:

 

The Originals - Adam Grant

The Hard Thing about Hard Things - Ben Horowitz

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*UCK - Mark Manson

 

I'm presently reading Reclaiming Conversation, The Power of Talk in a Digital Age by Sherry Turkle, which I'm enjoying.

 

Another SEO friend has been sending me Podcast suggestions from the Philosophical genre because he knows I eat that stuff up too.

 

Are there new books you've come across that help you with your work or any books, podcasts, TedTalks, etc. that inspire you or got you energized?

 

The Growing Threat of Cybersecurity in Medical Devices [INFOGRAPHIC]

by Haley Deleon @ Florida Tech Online

On an episode of the Showtime series Homeland, terrorists assassinated the vice president by hacking into his pacemaker. While this has never happened in real life, can this kind of activity be far off? Hundreds of thousands of medical devices are currently in use, and that number is expanding, along with potential vulnerabilities. Check out […]

The Most (and Least) Effective Facebook Headlines

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

  To view the entire article, click this link (from Buzzsumo): http://buzzsumo.com/blog/most-shared-headlines-study/

The post The Most (and Least) Effective Facebook Headlines appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Examples of Successful Brand Positioning Statements

by Olivia Nishi @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

Businesses have created brand positioning statements in order to shape the way their associated brands will be perceived. These statements have most likely gone through multiple drafts and revisions before being finalized, and they directly influence many of the brands we recognize on a daily basis. While those who’ve studied marketing can probably define what […]

The post Examples of Successful Brand Positioning Statements appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

Why No One is Watching Your Video Content

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Any internet strategy consultant will tell you: video content is an important part of online marketing. However, when you spend time, money and effort producing videos that are not getting any views, it can soon become incredibly frustrating. If you have scripted, filmed and edited a video...

New Design for Atlanta Printing Company

by internetandwebmarket @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

Clash Graphics is a Graphic and Printing Company in Atlanta that serves consumers, large corporations, faith-based institutions and non-profit organizations. Over the past 5 years they have become one of the leaders in design and Atlanta flyer printing services. They print menus for restaurants, posters and flyers for concerts, and business cards for small and […]

Digital Economy & Society In The Eu

by @ All Forums

Digital Economy & Society in the EU

 

 

This publication is divided into 4 chapters:

 

  • Chapter 1 Profile of the digital society & businesses focuses on how and for which purposes people and businesses go online, on digital skills and ICT specialists. It includes, among others, information on mobile internet access, internet activities, use of social media as well as the employment of ICT specialists.
  • Chapter 2 E-commerce looks in detail at e-commerce from two perspectives: people ordering goods and services online and businesses selling electronically.
  • Chapter 3 Internet security & the cloud provides information about aspects related to privacy and the protection of personal information online, ICT security policies of businesses as well as about private and business use of cloud services.
  • Chapter 4 What is the digital single market about? gives some background information about the content and goals of the EU policy concerning the creation of the digital single market which is one of the ten political priorities of the European Commission.

 

  •  

Viral Marketing Strategies Class – November 6th

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

My next Viral Marketing Strategies Class next Wednesday, November 6th at the Kirkwood Training and Outreach Services Center in Marion. The class will be from 6 to 8 pm. The cost to attend is $29 and you can register on Kirkwood’s Website. The class, Viral Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses, will include an overview of […]

Creating Buyer Personas for Your Financial Services Business

by Shelley Pringle @ Advisor Web Marketing

A few days ago, I met with a financial advisor who asked me if it would be better to hold a seminar to attract new clients at lunchtime or in the evening. Here’s how the conversation unfolded: Me: Who’s your ideal customer? Financial advisor: Women over 50 Me: Are they working or already retired? Financial […]

The post Creating Buyer Personas for Your Financial Services Business appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

5 Misconceptions of Web Video

by Steven Chalmers @ The Deep End Design

Video on the Web has matured into a multi-billion dollar industry, with everyone from major media companies to kids with webcams uploading countless hours of video daily. Marketers have jumped on the bandwagon, using videos to build brand awareness and generate sales. Internet video can be dramatically more powerful in delivering a message than simple […]

The post 5 Misconceptions of Web Video appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Lots Of Mobile Web Design Questions

by @ Cross-Browser Device Assessment Panel

Asking Empowering Questions: How to Visualize Success (for yourself & your clients)

by ian @ good karma

The quality of the questions we ask ourselves are directly related to the quality of our lives. Tony Robbins said something like that once at 3am on my TV, and I took note at how true that really is. (mostly because i was asking myself whether I wanted a bottle of red – or white […]

The post Asking Empowering Questions: How to Visualize Success (for yourself & your clients) appeared first on good karma.

Financial Advisor Marketing Consultant | Brent Carnduff

Financial Advisor Marketing Consultant | Brent Carnduff


Advisor Web Marketing

Brent Carnduff, a financial advisor marketing consultant, has an MBA in financial planning, and is the owner of Advisor Web Marketing.

Video: How to Build Instant Trust on Your Website

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Video Transcript If you get people coming to your site but they’re not converting, you may have a trust problem. All right, I want you to think about something. When is the last time you bought anything online? Anything, it could be a product from Amazon, it could be just deciding on a restaurant or […]

The post Video: How to Build Instant Trust on Your Website appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Infographic: 7 divine considerations for improving page load speed

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Page load speed is one of the mission critical aspects when it comes to improving the user experience of your website. A good loading time not only benefits in terms of quicker conversion, but also stops hampering the SEO and brand image. So, how to ensure a best in class user experience? Read our 7 […]

The post Infographic: 7 divine considerations for improving page load speed appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Retro Web Design

by Simon Andras @ The Deep End Design

Retro inspired design can be a powerful tool in a designer’s toolbox. By drawing on iconic representations of a bygone era, designers can invoke a sense of nostalgia, class, and timelessness. As effective as it is, a well-done retro web design can also be hard to pull off. Here are some examples of beautiful, well-executed […]

The post Retro Web Design appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Importance of Conversion Rates for Manufacturing Industry and How to Measure Them

by Peggy Owen @

It’s only natural for businesses to want to know how they compare with competitors, and that remains true in the manufacturing industry, as well. Many manufacturing firms want to know how they can accurately determine how they are performing against their peers. Learning how to correctly determine your B2B conversion rate, as well as how […]

The post Importance of Conversion Rates for Manufacturing Industry and How to Measure Them appeared first on .

Is Facebook Any Good For Internet Marketing

by @ Social Media and Tagging

Mobile SEO, Mobile Internet Marketing – It’s all about the mobile, mobile, mobile!!

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

In today’s world more and more people access the internet and websites via their cell phone and tablet. Therefore it is crucial that your content be available and be formatted correctly to look right when people are perusing. Please see the article by Search Engine Watch below: http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2320366/Top-10-Trends-in-Mobile-Across-Paid-Owned-Earned-Media The article shows the growth and expansion … Continue reading Mobile SEO, Mobile Internet Marketing – It’s all about the mobile, mobile, mobile!!

The post Mobile SEO, Mobile Internet Marketing – It’s all about the mobile, mobile, mobile!! appeared first on Dragon Internet Marketing.

E-commerce Sites With Great Color Themes

by Rob Toledo @ The Deep End Design

Some businesses focus all their energies on the features, layout, and content of their webstore. But color schemes are more than just a decorative addition to an ecommerce design; in fact, color can powerfully influence user perceptions of your site. For example, muted pastels will invoke a sense of calm into your visitors, while bright […]

The post E-commerce Sites With Great Color Themes appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Beyond Local Online Presence: How Your Local Business Can Keep the Cash Register Ringing with ‘Local Buzz’

by webmaster @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

According to statistics, an overwhelming 78% of consumers research about products and services on the Internet before buying locally. The message consumers are sending local business owners is therefore clear: be visible online or get ready to close shop. A lot of business owners have responded to this message by getting a website done. They […]

Content Creation For Small Businesses And Other Web Entities

by @ Writing Content for the Web

Why Every Small Business Needs to Invest in their Website’s UX

by Maciej Fita @

What do your local small coffee shop, a tech startup, and a well-known company like Apple have in common? This question is not tricky at all because the answer is fairly intuitive. All three businesses depend on people enjoying their products to continue to operate.   Be it digital or physical, a product or a
Read more

Increase Sales & Website Traffic with Google AdWords: Birkey’s Farm Store

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

Earlier this year, we posted an article about Birkey’s Farm Store and their amazing success with Google AdWords in only 4 months’ time.
Now, Birkey’s current campaign has succeeded in producing results which rival and surpass their previous success.
Our Autumn Team worked with Birkey’s to create a Google Adwords campaign promoting the sale of quality used combines.  Autumn developed customized Google ads that display in  local states, as well as in multiple territories in Canada.  These ads are a combination ...

Marketing Moves Advisers Should Take in 2017 – Investment News

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

Advisers have to be producing fresh content at least weekly. It’s become more challenging for advisers to land at the top of a Google search. Advisers think nobody is reading, but if they publish regularly their audiences will grow and traffic will increase. Even if advisers think a particular subject has been written about to […]

The post Marketing Moves Advisers Should Take in 2017 – Investment News appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

10 Questions to Ask Online Marketing Consultants Before Hiring One

by Peggy Owen @ Internet Marketing Consultancy

For most small to midsize business owners, the process of hiring help, including an Internet marketing consultant, can be somewhat of a daunting process. Unfortunately, many businesses simply do not know what to ask when hiring an online marketing consultant. It is actually not that much different from hiring any other professional. The key is […]

The post 10 Questions to Ask Online Marketing Consultants Before Hiring One appeared first on .

Local Citations

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

Why are local citations important? One factor to ranking well organically within the Google maps, also called GMB – Google My Business is having good citations. You can see an example of a client of ours that ranks well below. I recently read an article that talks about that – Consumer citations are the future of … Continue reading Local Citations

The post Local Citations appeared first on Dragon Internet Marketing.

Facebook Remarketing Techniques That Really Work

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Does your internet strategy include remarketing? If not, then you could be missing out on potential sales from previous website visitors. With the help of custom Facebook audiences, you can tailor your Facebook ads to those rapidly cooling leads and turn them into customers. What is Remarketing?...

Web Analytics & Tracking

by @ Measuring Your Web Site

An Introduction to Direct Response Marketing

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

Direct response marketing is one of the fastest growing marketing trends out there right now. The reason so many businesses are taking advantage of it is because it allows a measured response so that the ROI is maintained.

The post An Introduction to Direct Response Marketing appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

Search News Central Relaunched

by @ All Forums

Doc Sheldon has brought Dave Harry's website back to life, along with co-owner Rob Jones.

 

My column is the User Is Out There, (also the name of one of my websites) where I'll be tackling UX, Conversions, Accessibiliy and Mobile design.

 

https://searchnewscentral.com/

 

 

Today, after a 4-year hiatus, Search News Central has re-launched. And what a cast of writers we’ve got on board! Here are the writers who’ve signed up (so far) to bring you relevant, actionable marketing information – whether it be tips, perspective or tutorials, you’ll recognize a lot of these folks as people who other pros listen to. Put SNC on your morning must-read list… we’ll work hard to keep it interesting.

SNC Writers:
Angela DiLoreto, Angie Niloleychuk, Ann, Smarty, Anna Herman, Anne Kelley, Annie Cushing, Arsen Rabinovich, Barrie Moran, Bill Hartzer, Bill Slawski, Bob Jones, Bonnie Burns, Brian Wallace, Chase Reiner, David Amerland, David Hoegerman, David Ogletree, Don Rhoades, Frank Watson, Gareth Daine, Garrett French, Gina Fiedel, Grant Simmons, Ian Lurie, Ian McAnerin, Jennifer Henry Horowitz, Jesse McDonald, Jey Pandian, Jonathan Schikowski, Josh Levenson, Kim Krause Berg, Kristine Schachinger, Krystian Szastok, Lee Bierne, Matt Beswick, Michael Stricker, Rishi Lakhani, Rob Duckers, Rob Wagner, Samir Balwani, Scott Polk, Shelly DeMotte Kramer, Teodora Petkova, Thom Craver, Tim Capper. And of course, my co-owner, Rob Jones and I!

 

 

Go for Mobile Responsive Web Design [Infographic]

by webmaster @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

Getting More Leads and Sales, Not Just Fancy Cosmetic Redesign Implementing responsive web design means opening up your online storefront to mobile visitors, effectively increasing your chances of getting more leads and sales through your site. While it may come as a mere fancy redesign to some business owners, you should realize that this change […]

Website Usability 101– Tips To Avoid Common Blunders

by Peter North @ The Deep End Design

For a website to be popular among targeted audiences, usability is the most important factor. Being creative is great, but a website ultimately needs to be usable for your end users. This can prove to be a distinguishing factor for the website to stand out from the crowd. Web designers, who prefer creativity to usability, […]

The post Website Usability 101– Tips To Avoid Common Blunders appeared first on The Deep End Design.

The Power of Digital: How Web Marketing Has Changed (Part 1)

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

Ask a traditional communications professional about the golden age of marketing and they’ll tell you about the power that advertising and marketing has provided in helping propel brands off of store shelves and into consumers’ hearts and homes.
It used to be, he or she will say, that a company would be clarifying marketing messages through a commercial, a billboard, a magazine ad or another similar type of signal and it would broadcast their message out to consumers and qualifying ...

Stand Out by Offering Digital Signage Design as a Service

by Todd Hemme @ The Deep End Design

Differentiation is something every business needs to succeed. Competition in the design industry is fierce. There are plenty of options for businesses to choose from when they want a new website, a new app or an email program. What makes you different than the other options? Something you might not have considered is offering digital […]

The post Stand Out by Offering Digital Signage Design as a Service appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Website Design at NESO 2016: Office of the Future

by Orthopreneur Internet Marketing @ Orthopreneur Internet Marketing Solutions

Adapt or perish. Consumers today expect to be impressed at every turn. They want the best technology, distilled into a form that is easy to digest. It is not always easy to make the “latest and greatest” technology available to the masses, but we must find a way. At the 2016 Northeastern Society of Orthodontists’ Read More

The Importance of Web Usability in B2B Marketing

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting


The aesthetics, great! The content, great! Spelling and punctuation, great! Is the site usable though? Usability plays a vital role in web marketing and is often overlooked in B2B as it is only seen as important for B2C. Here at Autumn Consulting, not only do we understand the importance of usability for your site, but we also know how to incorporate it into your site as well.
 
Here are a few key factors we consider in usability when ...

The Update in Google Search Console is not an algorithm update.

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

Are you wondering why you’re seeing “Update” in your click data in Google Search Console (Webmaster Tools)? You’re not alone! I have been asked about this a few times, so I thought it was worth writing a blog post about. If you look at Search Analytics data, you’ll see something that looks like this: What does “update” mean here? Google tries to explain it by offering us […]

The post The Update in Google Search Console is not an algorithm update. appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

Marketers Rate Their Conferences

by @ All Forums

It's no surprise that Pubcon rates as the number marketing conference. There are some interesting findings in this report however, especially when broken down by gender.

 

The most important factors for women are cost, speakers, and location.

For men, it's cost, networking and speakers.

 

My first thought is that location is my number one reason for NOT going to conferences anymore.  I hate Las Vegas.  It's across the country for me. So PubCon is out. So is MozCon, which is on the west coast. They were the only conferences in the top 5 rated that I recognized, but I'm also not technically a marketer.

 

The top topics are not in my ball park either. Even so, social media marketing is the number 1 topic. SEO is the last.

 

I personally always supported Brett and PubCon because he allowed related skills as topics for speakers, so that opened for me to give talks on conversions from the UX side. Me, Matt Bailey and Shari Thurow used to speak on SEO/IA/Conversions and were eventually shut out because UX was unwelcome. 

 

The article mentions cost for self employed folks like me. It is just not economically feasible for many of us. Unless there is an event near Phila, I don't bother to even investigate it.  Speakers are not paid and some conferences ask them to pay for their own time slots. 

 

The men also rated networking in the top 3. I liked seeing old friends but networking is not a personal strength. Besides, nobody wants to talk to the usability person, ha ha.

 

Can't wait for marketers to figure out that mobile design and accessibility compliance are what they need to save their jobs.  

 

New Report: How Marketers Feel About Conferences 

Life-Saving Social Media Tips

by Tina Reed Johnson @ Tina Reed Johnson

“Somebody, throw me a life ring!”  Many of you have started social media marketing for your business, and then given up on it.  Am I right?  The truth is, it takes time to come up with a strategy, content and learning when (and how) to post to your page.  But that doesn’t mean that it has to be […]

The post Life-Saving Social Media Tips appeared first on Tina Reed Johnson.

Expanding Web Marketing Internationally with Ro-Flo Compressors

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

Helping clients expand in new markets is a task the Autumn Consulting team enjoys doing...

A Case Study in Google’s Use of Visit & Click Data

by rand @ Rand's Blog

There’s still a weirdly large percent of the SEO and web marketing worlds that, despite overwhelming evidence, don’t believe that Google is collecting or using visit, engagement, click-through or clickstream data. This week, we stumbled across a superb example of the search giant doing just that, so I had to share. Something funny happens when […]

The post A Case Study in Google’s Use of Visit & Click Data appeared first on Rand's Blog.

Mobile Marketing – It’s a Complex Affair

by Maciej Fita @

  Though they say nothing moves faster than light, it could be argued that if anything comes even remotely close to recreating its pace, advances in technology would be it. In the space of just a few decades we’ve moved from the invention of the telephone, the first television broadcast to the first dial up
Read more

Opera Builds Web Standards School

by @ Tutorials and Virtual Learning

Internet Marketing ROI Measures

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

by Guest Blogger Andy Moysenko of Advyse. Return on investment (ROI) is one of the most important measures to a business. Whether the enterprise is growing, holding its own, or declining, meaningful ROI data on its expenditures, particularly in marketing is critical to managing the business. And, in the digital age, identifying the return on expenditures […]

The post Internet Marketing ROI Measures appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

What Are Your Favorite Books For Business, Web Dev, Digital Marketing?

by @ Site Planning and Preparation

Charlotte Internet Marketing Consultant- Reliable Acorn

Charlotte Internet Marketing Consultant- Reliable Acorn


Reliable Acorn, LLC

Reliable Acorn provides Charlotte internet marketing consulting and services. Contact us today and let us help grow your company.

Video: 5 Questions Your Web Designer Should Be Asking You (and why it matters)

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Video Transcript If you’re working with a web designer or agency, there is certain information that can make or break the project, so you’re going to want to make sure your designer is asking you these five questions. The biggest thing that will make your website project successful is whether or not it’s based in […]

The post Video: 5 Questions Your Web Designer Should Be Asking You (and why it matters) appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Why You Should Be on Several Social Media Networks and Not Just One

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

Are you just getting your business on social media and wondering if you need to be on every network? Do you have an established presence on one or two networks and wonder if you should add another? There are a few reasons why it is important to have your business prominent on several social media […]

The post Why You Should Be on Several Social Media Networks and Not Just One appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Have You Claimed Your Google Business Page?

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

While having a company website is a great start for building your online reputation, it is important to understand that your Google Business Page provides a roadmap for getting your target audience to visit your business along with opportunities for interaction that drive growth.

The post Have You Claimed Your Google Business Page? appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

The Evolution of Search – #learnGoogle #netmarketinghi

by netmarketinghi @ SEO SEM Internet Marketing Consulting – Honolulu, HI

Announcement – New newsletter and SEO course.

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

Big changes for Marie Haynes Consulting Inc. Hi! I really appreciate you taking the time to read about the upcoming changes in my company. I’ve been working on this for a very long time now and as scary as it is to launch…it’s time to fly! Some history If you know me at all, you probably know that I’ve done a lot of work with sites dealing with Google […]

The post Announcement – New newsletter and SEO course. appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

Facebook Advertising – Reach Your Marketing Goals with Ad Objectives

by Earl Netwal @ Minneapolis Internet Marketing Consultant

Why You Need Facebook Advertising? If you want to grow your business, you have to reach new customers. You can bet that a large cross-section of your customer base is using Facebook and Instagram every day.  To effectively market your business and increase awareness among the audience that matters to the growth of your business, […]

My Business Plan For My E-commerce Website

by @ Running a Business

Who is Responsible for Optimizing Content?

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Search Engine Optimization and content marketing are two areas of internet marketing that tend to overlap. It can get a little confusing trying to separate the two. One of the most commonly asked questions regarding this is who should be responsible for optimizing content – the writer...

Writing On The Internet

by @ Internet Law and Ethics

The only Los Angeles SEO company to guarantee results

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

The only Los Angeles SEO company to guarantee results When deciding between local SEO companies, there is only one that provides excellent service combined with guaranteed results. With over 20 years of LaV1 has proven itself as the top partner to get your business or website seen online! Here’s how we’re different when it comes […]

The post The only Los Angeles SEO company to guarantee results appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

A Memorial Day Thank You from Maximus Internet Marketing

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Maximus Internet Marketing would like to thank all those who made the ultimate sacrifice of giving their lives for this country and our freedom. What you and your families have done and endured for us is something we are extremely grateful for.  Hero’s like you are what makes our country so great. We would also […]

The post A Memorial Day Thank You from Maximus Internet Marketing appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

Infusionsoft Vs. Salesforce

by Ben Pearce @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Salesforce Overview: Salesforce was created as a cloud-based Client Relationship Management (CRM) software platform. It has been designed to make […]

The post Infusionsoft Vs. Salesforce appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Web Project Manager

by Robert Mathew @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

About the role As the Head of Web Design you will be the primary liaison for the day-to-day execution of […]

The post Web Project Manager appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

3 Simple Reasons Why You Absolutely Need to Ask for a Deposit

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Next to drafting client agreements, getting a deposit from your clients is one of the most important things you’ll do as a freelance designer. A lot of new graphic designers make the rookie mistake of being too timid to ask their clients for a deposit. Whether out of fear, lack of self-esteem, or simple ignorance, […]

The post 3 Simple Reasons Why You Absolutely Need to Ask for a Deposit appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Spring has sprung: simple images that invoke spring into your designs

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

We all recall the news stories about the now infamous, polar vortex and the havoc that the cold months can bring on us. I still can’t get that image of the burning car in North Carolina out of my head (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/13/photo-south-storm_n_4784280.html). But I digress… Depending on where you live, spring may or may not be […]

The post Spring has sprung: simple images that invoke spring into your designs appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How To Give Access To Facebook Fan Page

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

The post How To Give Access To Facebook Fan Page appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

WSI MarketBuilders Internet Marketing Daily News Feed 07/07/2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

Is Your Local Business Invisible Online? Discover Local Buzz! [Infographic]

by webmaster @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

More and more consumers are using the Internet to search for products and services in their area. Sadly, local businesses are struggling to keep up with the trend. They are finding it more and more difficult to stay visible to potential customers online. On the other hand, a select few local businesses are thriving. They […]

3 Critical Title Tag SEO Best Practices [Video]

3 Critical Title Tag SEO Best Practices [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5-10 Minutes)

You would think creating great title tags is simple right? After all it’s just a 70-character (or less…) line of text, how hard can it be?

The fact is, every single client Biquitous has ever worked with – no matter how large – has always needed help, sometimes urgently, to fix their title tags.

So in this post, I’ll share some of our “secret sauce” for creating great title tags, explain why the title tag is arguably the most important factor for increasing traffic and SEO on your website, and show you 3 critical title tag SEO best practices for creating title tags that will yield the biggest bang for your buck.

(Quick note: For the best experience I recommend watching the short video, but all of the critical elements that you need to know are also in text format below the video along with copious amounts of screenshots.)

What is a “title tag”, why is it useful, and how does it work within search engine results?

  • What Is A “Title Tag”? The title tag is a small bit of code within every single web page (hopefully!) that tells search engines and visitors what the page is about.

  • Why Is It Useful? The title of your page (or title tag – I’ll use the terms interchangeably in this post) is critical and indispensable because it represents your biggest – and oftentimes ONLY – chance to get a visitor to click through to your website, read and/or share your content, and is one of the most powerful on-page SEO factors for search engines.

 

Remember: “On-Page” or “On-Site” SEO refers to search engine optimization strategies and best practices that are done within specific pages or an entire website, respectively, to increase search engine rankings.

  • How Does It Work Within Search Engine Results? For search engine results, the title tag is used as a primary factor in determining what your page is about and is displayed in organic search results, other websites – such as social media sites – and within your web browser at the top and within the tabs.

 

The Title Tag In Your Browser Menu Bar

 

The Title Tag In Your Browser Tab

 

Why is the title tag vital to your company’s Internet marketing strategy?

The title tag is arguably the easiest to implement – and one of the most important – search engine optimization factors for 3 basic reasons:

  • First, it’s the title or headline of your article, blog post or web page, and is the very first thing that people see in search results, or when scanning a page for headlines or something to click on.
  • Second, search engines like Google and Bing place a heavy emphasis on the title tag for ranking your page.
  • Third, a catchy, keyword rich headline attracts more links from other websites all on its own because of the fact that, if the headline was compelling enough for the reader to click on it (and the content on the page backed that up) then you are more likely to get a friendly retweet, Facebook post, or backlink to your article passing it along to others.

So in short, a compelling headline (aka: the title tag, or title) not only speaks to search engines in a language they can understand, but it also is the #1 factor for visitors in deciding whether or not they want to click through and visit your website, and ultimately, whether or not they want to link to your website and share your content with others.

How do you create amazing title tags and what are some best practices for humans and search engines?

Here are 3 strategies and best practices we use at Biquitous to craft the very best title tags:

1. Humans First:

Make sure you write the title tag for human beings first. Why? It does you no good to craft a fancy keyword-rich headline if nobody clicks on it.

The headline should be compelling and descriptive telling the visitor exactly what that page/article is about in as few words as possible.

Think along the lines of writing a newspaper headline: You want to GRAB me and make me want to click on your link, especially if I’m interested in that topic or in need of your product or service, and I’m your target audience.

Remember: Humans First! Make your title tag read like a newspaper headline to attract attention and clicks!

 

Here are some quick guidelines and best practices to accomplish this:

  • Make the headline compelling, but NOT hype or something outlandish
  • Use numbers if appropriate (like the title of this post)
  • Use action words (Best, Powerful, Strategies, Reviews, Video, etc.)
  • Use separators like hyphens (-), pipes (|) or commas (,) but NOT special characters (∞, <, ©, etc.)
  • Use industry specific nomenclature if appropriate (Hog instead of motorcycle, SEM instead of Search Engine Marketing, P/E ratio instead of Price-To-Earnings Ratio, text messaging instead of SMS, etc.)
2. Search Engines Second:

In order to get some SEO value from your title tag, you need to make sure you include at least 1 keyword phrase like:

“Title Tag SEO Best Practices”

instead of generic keywords like:

“Title Tag”

so that the article has a better chance of being found, ranking, and converting for your desired content/keywords on that page.

While beyond the scope of this piece (I’ll post something soon on exactly how to do this) make sure you at least use Google’s Keyword Tool (free) or the SEOMoz Keyword Difficulty Tool (requires subscription) to find appropriate keywords for your title tags based on traffic and competition.

3. Technical Stuff Last:

Now that you’ve put a little time and thought into your title tag, it’s time to fine-tune your title with some final best practices and strategies for usability and the SEO side of things.

  • Title tag character limit: Make sure your title tags are less than 70 characters in length, including spaces, because that is all that that will be displayed in search engine results. Your title tag can be as long as you want it (and sometimes will need to be longer than 70 characters out of necessity) but try your best to keep it under this limit.

  • Most important keywords at the beginning: Try to always put your most important keywords/phrases at the BEGINNING of your title tag. For stylistic and human reading purposes, this might be hard or difficult to do with certain pages/posts, but as a general rule, the search engines give more weight to words at the beginning than at the end of the title tag when ranking your pages.

  • Branding: As a general rule of thumb, you should include your website/company name in your title tag either at the beginning on your homepage, or at the end of your title tag on all other pages and blog posts separated with a pipe (|). However, we’ve done it both ways depending on whether a brand is well known or not. In other words, if it is well known, putting the website or company name at the beginning, regardless of the page, can help with click-through rates because of trust and authority.
If your company is well known and has a powerful brand, it might help click-through rates to put your brand name at the beginning of your title tag.

 

Of course sometimes, even well known brands still put their company name at the end of their title tags.

 

  • Unique title tag for ALL pages: Make sure that you have a unique title tag for each page of your website! Sounds trivial, but you’d be surprised how many websites – especially well-established businesses and brands – have duplicate title tags! This is a big no-no.
  • Keyword stuffing: Don’t think that adding MORE keywords is better. It’s ok to try and rank for a broad phrase that contains a couple of like-minded or similar keywords, but if you overdo it, you will get penalized. For something as important and simple as your title tag, it’s not worth the risk!

Bottom Line:

The title tag is easy to understand and simple to execute making it one of my favorite starting points for beginning or fixing a company’s SEO strategy.

By utilizing these best practices and examples, you can quickly and easily see where your company has perhaps gone astray with your SEO and, while it might take some time depending on the size of your site, the investment is well worth making sure that your title tags are the best they can be for both humans and search engines.

If you’ve got anything to add that you think I missed or is vital (I tried to be concise and direct without going into minutiae) please leave a comment below.

For more great resources on the title tag, check out these articles:

 ...Read More >>

Google+ My Business and Yelp Reviews – What to Tell Your Clients

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

It is important to have clients leave reviews of your service/product on Google+ My Business and/or Yelp. The more reviews you have, the more exposure you get on the web. This is very important… and yes, it’s worth the effort to encourage … Continue reading

Mobile Website Speed Testing Tool – Google

by netmarketinghi @ SEO SEM Internet Marketing Consulting – Honolulu, HI

Test how mobile-friendly your site is. Find out how well your site works across mobile and desktop devices. TEST NOW Powered by PageSpeed Insights | Experienced developer? Go here About Google Products Advertising Business Privacy & Terms Change language or region Deutsch – DeutschlandEnglish – AustraliaEnglish – CanadaEnglish – United KingdomEnglish – Republic of IrelandEnglish […]

Sales Oriented Social Media Strategy for B2B and Industrial Businesses

by Peggy Owen @

Most social media marketing tips tend to be geared toward the business-to-consumer crowd. Even so, business-to-business companies can still benefit from a strong social media marketing strategy. The problem is that most manufacturing companies do not know how to optimize a B2B social media strategy. Below, we cover several industrial social media tips that can […]

The post Sales Oriented Social Media Strategy for B2B and Industrial Businesses appeared first on .

Content Writing & Marketing for Your Business: Why It Matters, Where to Start (Part 1)

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

When clients or prospects come to us and request a web marketing review, the first recommendation we give is almost always a need for more powerful content. Like it or not, content is king and it shows up in virtually every piece of marketing your business creates. From website copy, social media feeds, AdWords Campaigns, paper brochures and sales literature, the right content can make the difference between qualifying prospects and losing customers.
When it comes to content writing, we ...

How Much Does Hubspot Cost – True Cost of Ownership

by jtroia @ Internet Marketing Consultants | Video Marketing | Greystack Digital

How much does Hubspot Cost?  That’s a question that we get all the time and as often is the case when asking technology and marketing questions, the answer is “it depends”.  Hubspot has a pricing model that incorporates three primary elements into the mix to ultimately determine the price of your Hubspot software. The three […]

Cheap SEO Services: You Get What You Pay For

by David Zimmerman @ Reliable Acorn, LLC

I know you, as a small business owner, don’t have a lot of money to spend on marketing. I know this from my experience in working with small businesses, like yours. I also know this…

The post Cheap SEO Services: You Get What You Pay For appeared first on Reliable Acorn, LLC.

4 Ways to Get Website Traffic Through Facebook

by Shahzad Saeed @ The Deep End Design

If you’re looking to build traffic to your website, you need to look at the places where your potential customers reside online. With more than a billion active users from all around the world, Facebook seems to be one of the most reliable traffic sources for your website. Ever since Facebook restructured their Newsfeed algorithms, […]

The post 4 Ways to Get Website Traffic Through Facebook appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Create a Mobile Revolution for Engaging Customers

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

Mogreet: Leading the Way in Mobile and Video Messaging Technology (Case Study)
More than ever before, mobile phone use is impacting the way we live our lives, run our businesses and do our marketing.
According to Google, more mobile devices were purchased last year than laptop and desktop computers combined.  Why is this good news for business owners?  Because engaging customers through marketing has never been so convenient.  Consider the following case study.
Boosting Mobile and Video Messaging
Mogreet is ...

A Collection of Beautiful, Free UI Kits

by David Edwards @ The Deep End Design

Over the last few years I’ve started to get into web app design and development, and one of the things that I’ve found most important is the elements that make up the user interface. Getting the UI right is absolutely crucial, as a poor interface can result in users becoming frustrated and ultimately abandoning the […]

The post A Collection of Beautiful, Free UI Kits appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How to Go the Distance Between Graduation & Career

by Dustin Pearce @ The Deep End Design

To hear more about Dustin’s journey from graduation to his first job as a graphic designer, listen to episode 42 of The Deeply Graphic DesignCast. Job Search Marathon In the fall of 2012 I graduated from Miami University of Ohio with a BFA in graphic design. Eight-months after graduation 50% of my class was still […]

The post How to Go the Distance Between Graduation & Career appeared first on The Deep End Design.

CT Web Designers | Web Developers | Marketing Consultants |Synerge-marketing

CT Web Designers | Web Developers | Marketing Consultants |Synerge-marketing


Synerge-marketing

Meet our CT Web Designers, Developers, SEO Specialists, & Internet Marketing Professionals at Synerge-marketing Stamford, Norwalk, Fairfield, Bridgeport

Frank’s Red Hot “I Put That SH*T On Everything” Marketing Campaign Rocks

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5 Minutes)

I woke up the other day to the sound of a commercial...

It caught my attention because it had a little old lady talking about how she "puts that sh*t on everything".

The "sh*t" she was talking about is Frank's Red Hot sauce, and it not only caught my attention, but it made me laugh hysterically.

Here's a video clip of one of the ads (the radio spot is a bit different):

Here's another short spot that will lift your spirits and make you laugh:

UPDATE:

Frank's has since released additional commercials -- they are nowhere near as good as the old ones, but play off of the new love affair with dating apps and a new take on spiking the punch:

 

So let's talk about what the company did RIGHT with their offline and online marketing initiatives (as well as their website) and also look at what they did WRONG because inevitably, there are always things that could be done better or are being neglected, that a company can improve upon and that we can learn from.

And while Frank's did a lot right, they also made some key mistakes that you can and should learn from.

What Frank's Did Right:

  • Offline Marketing: The radio and television spots are memorable, short and to the point.

This is a hard feat to achieve because oftentimes we remember Super Bowl ads or other marketing initiatives not because of the product in question, but more so because of the ad. In the meantime, the entire product gets lost.

In Frank's ads however, you remember that it is hot sauce because Ethel (the old lady in the ads), tells us that she "puts that sh*t on everything..." which makes me laugh every time I hear it, read it, or type it.

You then think to yourself: "What exactly is that sh*t?" oh yeah, it's hot sauce...

  • Website: Frank's then ties in their actual website beautifully with their offline initiatives so you know you're in the right place immediately.

From Ethel greeting you with her presence, to the large bottles of hot sauce and links to recipes, videos and more, the site is fairly straightforward, interactive, fun, easy to navigate and looks great.

  • Social Media: Frank's does a great job of making their social media front and center (but missed some vital pieces -- more below!), with a Facebook fan page invitation scrawled across the top of every page of their website.

They have almost 120,000 "likes" and do a great job of interacting with, and using social media to promote their brand and endear themselves to their loyal customers and fans.

BUT, as with any marketing campaign and web presence however, there are mistakes that should be fixed immediately to help Frank's promote their brand and gain even more loyal followers, not to mention for usability and best practices.

What Frank's Did Wrong:

  • Social Media Fake-Out: When you look at Frank's homepage, you'll notice a Facebook and Twitter icon in the middle of the page.

This will take you directly to those fan pages respectively right?

Wrong...oops.

Frank's goofed big time here as they made these some sort of social media news feed about people talking about their brand on Twitter and Facebook rather than using industry standards and what people come to expect when they click on social media icons on your site that DON'T say "share".

These should instead open to their respective social media pages.

They need to fix this ASAP.

  • Social Media Fake-Out 2: On the bottom of every page, Frank's has another row of social media icons with the word "share" next to them.

Oops...same mistake as before.

These should be links to the respective social media pages that Frank's runs or doesn't...more on that in a second.

If they want to add "share" icons, that's fine, but make them clearly visible and actionable with the Facebook "Like" icon and others that are industry standards and users know well.

The worst thing you can do is confuse users with new ways of doing things that they are used to doing already unless you have a very compelling reason for changing things up -- in this case Frank's does not.

  • Abandoned/Missing Social Media: Where's the links to Frank's Twitter account and/or YouTube channel?

I did some poking around, and while Frank's has a YouTube channel, it hasn't been updated in quite some time (they are featuring only 2 videos, with no links to any of the more recent ones), and their Twitter account hasn't been updated since March of 2008! Yikes...

Frank's should have these social media platforms active and tied into their Facebook page.

This is especially important because their videos, recipes and other content are fantastic for sharing, embedding on websites and passing along and making viral.

They are losing a lot by not doing this.

  • Embedding Videos: Frank's also doesn't have code on their website to easily embed their great videos (free SEO and backlink juice!), or at least have a link to their YouTube channel. This needs to be addressed ASAP!

Bottom Line:

Frank's has a killer offline marketing campaign that ties in beautifully with their online website and social media presence.

However, as with any marketing campaign, there are some areas that need to be shored up to take advantage of all the free exposure and SEO value that Frank's is missing out on without doing any additional work!

Overall, Frank's "I put that sh*t on everything" campaign does all the right things in a memorable and clever way, and we all should be so lucky to have created such an intelligent, funny and memorable campaign that ties in with our Internet marketing efforts so effectively.

If Frank's cleans up the few issues that they have (glaring in some instances) they'll be unstoppable within their niche. ...Read More >>

Are Ppc Built Websites Ruining The Web?

by @ Pay-Per-Click Search Listings

Does Making a Website Mobile-Friendly Have a Universally Positive Impact on Mobile Traffic?

by rand @ Rand's Blog

From October of 2004 to April of 2015, Moz’s website remained entirely mobile-unfriendly. The experience on mobile, tablet, and desktop devices was the same, and if your screen was small, you had to pinch and zoom. Many of our readers complained and many more wondered why a technology company in the web marketing field would […]

The post Does Making a Website Mobile-Friendly Have a Universally Positive Impact on Mobile Traffic? appeared first on Rand's Blog.

Is Seo Part Of Website Development?

by @ Search Engine Optimization

10 Tips to Super-Charge Your WordPress Website

by Steve Halvorson @ The Deep End Design

As you may already be aware, WordPress has taken the web design world by storm.  With over 20% of new websites being built on the platform and around 18%-20% of the internet already being powered by this well-regarded CMS, WordPress is on the rise and here to stay.  Here’s a few tips to maximize your […]

The post 10 Tips to Super-Charge Your WordPress Website appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Mobile Design: How to Wow Them on the Small Screen

by Ken Myers @ The Deep End Design

With more people making the leap to smartphones, mobile websites are becoming increasingly important for businesses to generate interest and make sales. Having the ability to create mobile websites that are user-friendly, on point and present clean design is becoming a necessary skill in the world of design. Don’t be fooled by the seeming simplicity […]

The post Mobile Design: How to Wow Them on the Small Screen appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Google Web Search Is Super Fast For Blogs

by @ Blogs, RSS and Syndication

Guerrilla Marketing Weapon #26 – The Elevator Speech

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

Do you have an Elevator Speech for your Business? I don’t know the numbers anymore, but I know as consumers we receive a lot of messages each day in a variety of formats. We’re all pressed for time and need to be able to quickly and easily decipher which messages have a benefit for us […]

Complete 5-Step On Page SEO Checklist [Video]

Complete 5-Step On Page SEO Checklist [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read/Watch Time: (5 - 10 Minutes)

We get asked all the time for a checklist to specifically help companies with their ON-page SEO (vs. OFF-page, or off-site SEO).

There’s nothing worse for your website than spending hours creating great content only for nobody to ever see it or read it, because you didn’t take the time to ensure that search engines could find your page, crawl it and index it properly.

So I thought the best thing to do would be to cull together the best practices that we use at Biquitous when we either publish content ourselves or for our clients, and create a step-by-step blueprint that you can use immediately to make sure your own content is search engine friendly.

This short video will give you a handy 5-step on page SEO checklist to ensure that any content that you create is search engine friendly and has the highest chance to rank because you did everything in your power to make sure your content is ready to be crawled and indexed properly.

I originally created this video for the Retargeter blog.

(Quick note: For the best experience I recommend watching the short video, but all of the critical elements that you need to know are also in text format below the video along with copious amounts of screenshots.)

First Question: Does Your Content Suck?

So let’s start at the top.

Let’s say you’ve created a fantastic page, some great content, wonderful graphics, a great lead-in, and the page delivers awesome value to your readers…

Wait a minute…before we go any further, I need to ask you about your content.

You see, if your content stinks or you haven’t taken the time to ensure that what you are about to publish is something that you would recommend to your friends, family or colleagues, then stop what you are doing and make something that is!

The checklist I’m about to share with you assumes you’ve already crossed this threshold and your content is golden.

In the end, it doesn’t matter if your page is SEO friendly if the content on the page doesn’t compel others to share that content or pass it on.

Great Content? - Now You're Ready!

So, let’s assume you’ve done your homework, and what you are about to release to the world is stellar content.

I’m also going to assume that you know what specific keywords you want to rank for in the process of creating this great content.

So now what?

Well, now you need to make sure you’ve optimized your page properly so that search engines can index your page and others can find it.

So without further ado, here’s our 5-step On-Page SEO Checklist that we use at Biquitous to ensure that all the content you create has the best chance possible to rank highly in the search engines.

#1 Is the Title of Your Post:

Sounds simple right?

Wrong! The title of your post is THE most critical on-page ranking factor, so you better spend some time to make sure it’s done right.

Here are some quick tips to ensure that happens:

  • Make sure the title tag is written for humans first. So, while it’s important that you incorporate your main keyword phrase in your title, it’s more important that human beings feel compelled to click on it and share it with others.

  • Then make sure that your title tag includes elements that search engines are looking for. Use your main keyword phrase that you are trying to rank for – usually a group of 2-4 words, rather than 1 generic word – in the title in a natural way.

Try and put your most important keywords towards the beginning of the title.

  • Finally, make sure that your title is less than 70 characters in length, although this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Sometimes depending on the content, you’ll need to make your title longer than 70 characters, but as a general rule, try to keep it below this number.

One final bonus tip about the title: make sure your URL matches the title with hyphens separating each word, stripping out words such as “and, the, but", etc. This will add a little bit of extra SEO juice to your article.

What a well-titled URL will look like in your address bar
An Example:

An example title for an article about “diamond studded dog collars” would be:

“The Most Opulent Diamond Studded Dog Collars Revealed”

That title is 51 characters long, includes the main keyword phrase naturally, and draws the user in by promising a fantastic article on the most opulent diamond studded dog collars ever created.

The URL will then look something like this:

most-opulent-diamond-studded-dog-collars-revealed

Shorten your URL by removing words if it is too long and remember that in addition to helping the search engines categorize your page better, users also look at the URL in search results. The shorter and cleaner it is, the better your potential to rank higher and get more visitors.

For a complete breakdown of the title tag and 3 Critical Title Tag Best Practices, click here.

#2 Is the Description META Tag of Your Post:

The description tag is not specifically used by search engines as a ranking factor –in fact most completely ignore it – but it IS used by human beings to decide if they want to click through and visit your website and shows up on search engine results pages below the title of your page.

So that being said, here are some quick guidelines for creating a great description that compels a user to click through to your page, and inadvertently, also raises the SEO profile of your page:

  • First, repeat the main keywords that are in your title in your description in a natural way. You can and should also include like-minded or similar keywords if appropriate

  • Then, within your description you should include a compelling call to action. In other words, entice the person searching for that topic to click through to your page. Use language that tells the reader what to do, or promises something of value once they get to your page. You can use subtle phrasing or words like “Click Here” or “Watch a Video” depending on your specific content

  • Finally, keep the description under 160 characters, and ideally less than 140 characters in length for several reasons: First, search engines will cut off your description at 160 characters, and second, most social media websites will only display the first 140 characters of your description when users share your content

An Example:

So an example of a great description for an article about “diamond studded dog collars” would be something like:

“Diamond studded dog collars aren’t for every dog owner. But if you’re into pampering your canine, this post shares the very best collars money can buy.”

By the way, that’s 151 characters.

It contains the keywords of the article, and includes a natural and subtle call to action promising the user what they’ll find if they click on that link.

# 3 Is Ensuring You Include Alternate Text and Titles For All Images:

Users that are either visually impaired or have image loading turned off in their browsers will see a box with words where your image was supposed to be.

(Hover over this image to see the "Title" text in action)

In addition, search engines use this information to understand more about your page and what your images are about.

So, make sure that each image on your page includes a distinct “Alternate text” description that includes some of your keywords and similar phrases, and a “Title” that also describes the image and is different than your Alt text.

An Example:

In our example above, say we had an image of a diamond studded dog collar.

We would make the image’s Alternate text say something like:

“Image of a diamond studded dog collar”

and the Title say something like:

“Diamond Studded Dog Collar On A Black Dog”

#4 Is “Keyword Consolidation”:

All this means is that when you’ve written your article you need to run through it and make sure that the main keywords you want to rank for as well as similar phrases, are used naturally throughout your article.

The reason that this isn’t #1 on the list is because all the search engines put a much lower priority on this than they used to, and if you overdo it, you will get penalized for keyword stuffing.

So while important, I don’t want you to get fixated on inserting a certain number of keywords, or counting the number of times a word shows up on your page.

Some things you should tidy up include:

  • Ensuring that your main keyword phrase is used at least 1 time in your post, preferably near the beginning of the page
  • Ensuring that related words and phrases are also used throughout the page in a NATURAL way
  • Ensuring that at least some of your sub-headers (sometimes known as H1 through H6 tags) for sections within the page contain those phrases

Again, I don’t want you to get fixated on this, which is why I put this next to last, but it is something you should at least make sure is done to some extent for congruency.

But don’t overdo it, or you will be penalized!

#5 Is External Links:

An often overlooked strategy for higher rankings is by making sure that you link to related and valuable pages both on your own website as well as trusted and authoritative external websites.

Google will take your page more seriously, give you a higher authority, and improve your rankings over time, if you link to other websites that are similar to yours that provide value to your readers and better context or further reading related to your content.

Here are some quick rules of thumb for doing this correctly:

  • You should provide a link to another resource about every 300-400 words if appropriate. Depending on the nature of the page or content, you will either have more or less. That’s ok, this is just a rule of thumb so that you don’t write an entire page with absolutely no links to other pages on it
  • Make sure you link to pages on your own website, as well as those of outside sources
  • When you link to those pages, make sure you use description rich anchor text and a title to help both your users and search engines understand the context of the link
An Example:

So an example using our “diamond studded dog collars” from before would be to link to another page on your site that talks about “diamond studded dog leashes” and has that phrase as the anchor text:

or something like “great resources for dog collars” that links to an outside authoritative website about dog collars:

This lets search engines know that you are helping your users find more relevant content about the topic of your page.

Bottom Line:

So, there you have it.

A complete 5 step on-page SEO checklist to optimize your pages BEFORE you hit the “publish” button on any content you create on your website.

If you follow this system, I guarantee that you’ll get much better results from your content generating initiatives on a consistent basis.

If you’ve got anything to add that you think I missed or is vital (I tried to be concise and direct without going into minutiae) please leave a comment below.

 ...Read More >>

4 Tips To Choose Affordable SEO Services

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

When it comes to choosing a web design company you must utilize too much time in knowing the company. This will help meet up your requirements for your business. Here are few most important tips, which you must consider while choosing affordable SEO services. Make a list of potential companies It is suggested by the […]

The post 4 Tips To Choose Affordable SEO Services appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

How Visitors React To Search Results And Websites

by @ Online Marketing and Promotion

Illyes & Mueller Files and Google Updates – Episode 268

Illyes & Mueller Files and Google Updates – Episode 268

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

Listeners know we have had the Mueller Files for a while now, well… it’s time for the Illyes Files to make its presence known. This is because Gary Illyes of Google was the bearer of a ton of news at this year’s PubCon. That news includes Google Search Switching to Mobile First Index from Desktop […]

The post Illyes & Mueller Files and Google Updates – Episode 268 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

What Should A Contract For Offering Web Design Services Include?

by @ Running a Business

Why Online Guides Are More Than Good Reading Materials

by Maciej Fita @

  The internet is a great place to find a ton of resources. From online guides and tutorials to video walk-throughs and online forums, there are so many different channels where you can build your knowledge.   With so many places to go, things can get confusing and overwhelming. What if we told you there
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Negative Space in Logo Design

by Tom Reynolds @ The Deep End Design

In the field of graphic design, logos are a specialist art form in themselves. Created to encapsulate the brand in the most economical way, logos can convey incredibly complex messages in a compact area. The use of color, font style and imagery come together to make a compelling image of the brand using very little […]

The post Negative Space in Logo Design appeared first on The Deep End Design.

What Does An Internet Marketing Consultant Do? - Running a Business

What Does An Internet Marketing Consultant Do? - Running a Business


Cre8asiteforums

What Does An Internet Marketing Consultant Do? - posted in Running a Business: Hello,I have a meeting with a old client in 2 weeks. I designed their website 6 years ago and re-designed it last year, with some SEO and usability this time. I SEO'd only about 20% of the website. The site is rarely updated and traffic hasn't really increased since last year.At this meeting, I want to explain to my client that it takes more than on-site SEO to get traffic and visibility for a we...

What Makes A Podcast A Great Podcast?

by @ All Forums

I will be traveling in a few days to spend several days with a well known SEO speaker and author friend who invited me out to conduct a series of podcasts on UX, SEO, accessibility and everything in between.  I won't say who that person is until we get into the formal promo side of things.

 

It's been years since I did a podcast. I believe my first one was with Eric Enge, years ago. I've been on Webmaster Radio (when it was called that) many times, and of course, video interviews at conferences.

 

Podcasts are still fairly new to me as a user. I tend to go for visuals like video and am still a book lover. I want to do a great job at this and am seeking your pointers both as listeners and doers.

 

What makes a podcast really rock?

How often should I blog on my small business website?

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

Like many other questions, the answer depends on a lot of things. If your goal is to drive traffic to your small business website, then the more frequently you blog the better. Fresh, new content posted on your website each day and shared on social media will result in more exposure and more traffic to […]

Why Most Websites Fail and What To Do About It

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

Most websites fail miserably at the only thing they were ultimately designed to do: Generate sales.

Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on where your website stands, most websites fail because of one simple reason:

They were created BACKWARDS.

Let me explain what I mean with the graphic below from a leadership perspective (a graphic on the technical perspective follows later in the post):

(Click on image to enlarge)

(Note: Please feel free to use any original image in this post on your website, just link back to this post as the original source.)

You see, what often happens is that in a rush to get a website on the Internet and start branding, selling or collecting customer information, a business and the leaders responsible for that website, don't take the time to ensure that they are creating a sustainable and highly converting Internet presence.

Let's call this the "Ready, Fire, Aim" approach vs. "Ready, Aim, Fire" -- with an extra "Fire" thrown in the mix.

  • Ready: We need a website... (Mild panic)
  • Fire: We need more traffic! (Panic level rises)
  • Fire Again: Wait, the traffic isn't converting, we need more conversions! (Really panicked)
  • Aim: Sigh...we need to redesign our entire online presence. (Resignation)

So What Goes Wrong?

This is a classic case of basic human nature rearing its ugly head on a broad scale.

If I told you as an owner, CEO or high level leader of your company's Internet presence -- and for that matter pretty much anyone who has ever built or owned a website -- "Hey, this is going to take 3-6 months because we need to make sure we get it right..." you're going to take a deep breath, not say a word for about 30 seconds and then unleash a diatribe about launch dates, deadlines and "can't miss" product releases all relying on a website to get the word out.

This is all very understandable - we want things done NOW and results even sooner.

The thought of taking any extra time to get your web presence done right complete with back end systems and strategy, deep analysis and research, and a sound actionable marketing plan to convert visitors into sales, just feels like too much to bear when you've got anxious board members, stakeholders or the CEO or business owner staring at a blank "coming soon" page.

As often happens, those who don't truly understand Internet marketing, branding, strategy, how to increase market share, and what it takes to create a successful online presence, are more interested in expediency than they are in making sure that things are done right.

Actually, that's not true.

They want the best of both worlds:

Great...would you also like top 10 rankings for all your keywords and an 8 PageRank home page within 3 months to go with that?

Why This Approach Fails Every Time

What most business leaders and website owners need to realize is that you'll wind up costing yourself MORE in the long run -- both time and money -- working backwards trying to fix something that was terminally broken from the very start.

See if the following (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) scenario applies to your business or, ahem, someone you know:

(Click on image to enlarge)

Ready: We need a website

    • You quickly bought a domain name without thought to branding, ease of use, or SEO. So what if your domain name has 3 hyphens in it and is 70 characters long? Customers will easily remember it and search engines will love it.
    • You then hired a cheap designer, purchased a web "pro" package, or asked someone you know personally or within the company to create a website mock-up.
    • Next, you looked up some competitor's websites and keywords (or skipped this step entirely), and other sites that you thought looked good and copied what they were doing.
    • In your infinite wisdom, you and your "team" decided that the "Buy Now" button should be purple and in 4 places on every page and that your navigational bar should contain precisely 20 drop down menus, along with other cool design features your "team" thought were vital.
    • Your mock up was "good enough," approved, and was then sent to the programming "team" to code.
    • The site had bugs and flaws, but you had to launch.

Fire: We need more traffic

    • You were excited about the new launch...but then what? Oh yeah, you needed traffic!
    • So your business reached out to everyone you and your "team" knows in an effort to drum up buzz and go viral: friends, family, colleagues, and other websites and businesses, but for some reason it didn't work.
    • You then decided to try this whole "social media" thing because that was absolutely guaranteed to work. After all, your kids are on there all the time, and last you heard, Facebook had over 1 Billion folks using it.
    • Next, you threw money at the wall like spaghetti to see what would stick -- PPC ads, Print, Directories, Paid Links, Content Creation, E-mail marketing, and more -- oh my!
    • The site still wasn't really getting the traffic you expected, but all this "hard work" started to pay off -- you were now seeing incremental traffic -- but it was costing you.

Fire Again: The traffic isn't converting

    • Something just wasn't right. You were spending a lot of money and time on traffic and lead generation, but what little you got didn't pay off and certainly wasn't returning your initial investment.
    • You and your "team" read some blogs about SEO, Internet marketing and sales strategies.
    • Your "team" then decided that the "Buy Now" button should instead be red and be included in 2 more places on every page.
    • You changed the images you were using on your home and product pages.
    • You modified your META tags and added some ALT tags to your pages.
    • You stepped up and hired a friend or asked someone internal to rewrite the ad copy on the site.
    • You added a Verisign, Authorize.net or BBB logo to your checkout page.
    • You lowered your prices -- then raised them again.
    • You offered coupons, specials and other discounts.
    • You started sending out 3 newsletters a week instead of 1.
    • Unfortunately, even with all these awesome improvements, your site still wasn't converting sales -- at least not enough to justify this whole "Internet marketing" thing.
    • You decided to turn everything off, reevaluate the situation and devote your time and money to other initiatives.

Aim: We need to redesign our entire online presence...

    • After staring at the same old, tired, worn and cash-draining website, you realize you need help.
    • You look around for experts to help you and come to understand that you did everything backwards.
    • You wonder how much time and money it's going to take to fix your online presence...

By the time a company reaches out for help (once they realize that they aren't experts and what they did is not working) the entire strategy needs to be pretty much executed from the ground up at a huge cost to the business -- which is why they so often put it off as long as humanly possible.

If you're reading this right now, you know who you are.

How To Make Sure This Doesn't Happen To You - Ready, Aim, Fire

Now that we understand what went wrong and why you're not seeing the results you want, let's now focus on developing the basic fundamentals of your Internet presence.

Without first tying your marketing efforts into a specific strategy, conversion factor or lead generation system, you're basically throwing money at a problem (low rankings, lack of traffic, low conversions) for the wrong reason (you think you want higher rankings, more traffic) when instead the question or concern that should be addressed is this:

How do we get MORE conversions and sales once a visitor reaches our website?

Here's a simple 3-step process that we use with clients every day at Biquitous based on our proprietary 3-Phase Internet Marketing Execution Framework, that will help you avoid the "Ready, Fire, Aim" problem, and ensure you build your website and Internet presence right the first time.


(Click image to enlarge)

Phase 1: Strategy

==> Ready - Plan BEFORE Taking Action

  • Take a 30,000 Foot View: What is the objective of your entire Internet presence and online marketing strategy?

Nothing happens until you understand the exact purpose of your online marketing as it relates to your current corporate strategy and future business objectives. How will your online presence be a conduit towards the one goal that you REALLY care about: increasing sales, and with it, cash flow?

  • Evaluate Your Online Presence: With the clarity of your company, business and online marketing strategy in place, you then need to look at your current website and online presence in order to fix what’s broken or ensure that it is built properly the first time.

This means taking a deep look at things like:

  • Accurately depicting the value and services that you offer potential customers
  • Colors, branding and message
  • Infrastructure and level of sophistication needed to serve your company objectives: i.e. is the website for customers, vendors, employees, or a combination of all three?
  • And finally, usability for both existing and potential customers, AND your internal staff and vendors
  • Analyze Your Competition, Marketplace and Target Audience: Your business doesn’t operate in a vacuum and neither will your website.

You'll want to gain a full understanding of:

  • Your top 5 competitors (believe me, there are ALWAYS competitors!)
  • The marketplace where you will be doing business - both online and offline
  • Your target client/customer avatar (full demographics, frustrations, etc.)
  • Understand Potential Customer Behavior: Now you'll want to specifically delve into how potential clients and customers will use or are using the Internet to find and interact with your company.

Specifically you'll want to know:

  • Do your current and potential customers use search engines, social media -- or both -- to find your website?
  • What keywords are they using to find your website? What keywords convert the best? What keywords can you easily rank for and which will take longer to rank for?
  • What call-to-action, value statements and content are needed to get them excited about your website or click the “Add To Cart” button?
  • What types of colors, website design, user interface and other criteria does your website need in order to keep visitors on your site longer and ultimately convert them into leads and sales?
  • Zero In On Your Highest Priority Outcomes: Most business leaders don’t know the purpose of their website, social media and online presence.

Is it to entertain, get new leads, close sales, inform, generate buzz, help your vendors or sales team, customer service or outreach, a combination of all of these, or something else entirely?

Before you can even think of executing an online marketing strategy, you need to know the top 1-3 outcomes you'll want to achieve from the traffic that lands on your website.

Result of Phase 1 - Ready:

By the end of Phase 1 (Ready), you’re not only going to create a cohesive picture of your ideal customer and how they’re using the Internet to find and interact with your company, but more importantly, you’re going to align your company’s business objectives and sales goals with your online presence to create a bold, powerful and strategic Internet marketing action plan.

With a deep understanding of your business and your strengths -- as well as your weaknesses -- you can now deploy a comprehensive online marketing action plan and begin implementation in Phase 2 - Execution (AKA: Aim).


 

Phase 2: Execution

==> Aim - Execute To Perfection

  • Fine-Tune Your Online Branding and Corporate Identity: Your company needs to make sure that your branding and corporate identity speak to your target audience.

Specific attention needs to be paid to the use of color, graphics, artwork, images and design, to ensure that from your business cards and letterhead, all the way through to your website, everything matches and presents a cohesive, polished and appealing corporate identity that builds off of your entire online marketing strategy to increase credibility with your current and future customers.

  • Create an Engaging, Professional and Highly Targeted Website, or Modify Existing Site: Now it's time for the real "AIM" portion of this process, or the one that most leaders skip entirely the first time around.

From fun and frivolous to professional and streamlined, the final design of your website should have the desired effect of being engaging while also encouraging your potential clients and customers to utilize your online presence for its intended purpose – whether that’s to inform, entertain, generate buzz, attract leads or convert sales.

  • Incorporate Best Practices and Functionality: I tell our clients all the time that a visually appealing website is great – but a visually appealing website that converts visitors into sales is the ultimate objective. Your website now needs to be fine-tuned for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), e-Commerce, increased conversion rates and brand affinity.

This means making sure that:

  • Your site navigation is clean and easy to use
  • Your website architecture is properly integrated for SEO
  • Keywords are being incorporated into your website’s META tags and ad copy
  • The specific actions and conversion factors that you want visitors to take are front and center
  • And finally, that your entire website and online presence are fully optimized and revolve around your most desired outcomes
  • Integrate Social Media and Web 2.0 Interaction: Putting the finishing touches on your website development means customizing your own Web 2.0 and social media strategy to align with your overall company objectives.

This also means your site must be completely user-friendly and interactive through opt-in forms, newsletters, video and other interactive elements like reviews and site comments, that will allow you to stay front and center with your target audience, and more importantly, make them feel that they have a direct line of communication with your company.

Some of the social media and Web 2.0 strategies that might be right for your company include:

  • Blogging
  • Video
  • Autoresponders/E-mail sign up forms
  • Newsletters
  • Social media integration (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, etc.)
  • Reviews
  • Comments
  • Forums
  • Q and A
  • And other social interaction strategies

If a specific medium is not right for you, don't use it just because it's popular or your competitors are using it!

Result of Phase 2 - Aim:

Put it all together and what you get is a beautiful and functional piece of art that not only looks great, but ultimately increases your bottom line and expands your company’s brand affinity and loyalty, and is something you can proudly share with your customers and vendors.

Through this systematic website design and development process, your business will now be in possession of a polished, refined and amazing end-to-end online presence that will be ready to deliver customers 24 hours a day. Now it's time to deliver traffic in Phase 3 - Results (AKA: Fire).


 

Phase 3: Results

==> Fire - Drive Traffic

With everything set up and in place, NOW is the time to drive traffic to your website, experiment with various visitor and lead generating services, and closely monitor your conversion rates in order to adjust accordingly.

Some of this will be done through "free" traffic and lead generation (sometimes known in the industry as "Inbound Marketing") with the rest coming through paid sources.

Of course, if you have a staff or hire a team to do any work for you, and even if you are slaving away doing it yourself, there is no such thing as "free" traffic because everything has a cost whether that be time or money.

Here is a rundown of some of the ways you can and should increase traffic to your website depending on your needs, goals, target market and budget:

(Click image to enlarge)

The above graphic was inspired by a post by Rand Fishkin from SEOMoz about inbound marketing.

Here's a brief rundown of each form of traffic generation -- this was not designed to be a comprehensive list:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC/CPC)
  • Display Advertising
  • Blogging
  • Social Media
  • Webinars
  • Teleseminars
  • Retargeting
  • Branding
  • Podcasting
  • Infographics
  • Video
  • Content Marketing
  • Link Building
  • E-mail
  • Press Releases
  • Affiliates/JV's
  • White Papers
  • Document/Presentation Sharing
  • Forums
  • Q & A Sites
  • Direct/Referral Traffic
  • Social Bookmarking
  • Comments/Discussions
  • Content Curation/Aggregation
  • Applications/Widgets

My advice, and what we do at Biquitous, is to focus on the top 3-5 of these mediums/sources of traffic that will yield the highest return on your investment in both time and money.

For example, if you are just starting out, simple execution of an SEO/inbound link strategy will yield incredible results for a limited budget for low/medium competition keywords.

On the flip side, if your business is more seasoned and already ranks relatively well, executing a strategy that revolves around content marketing, PPC/CPC and display advertising could be the best way to take advantage of your well known brand that wasn't converting previously, but because of the work you did in Phase 1 and 2, now will convert a higher percentage of visitors from those sources.

  • Ongoing Collaboration and Execution: This includes campaign management and monitoring of your current initiatives: i.e. creating new marketing initiatives, testing and refinement of current initiatives, continuous expansion and implementation of your initial action plan, and new strategies and campaigns when appropriate.
Result of Phase 3 - Fire:

What good is a website if nobody finds it or interacts with it?

You're now ready to start generating and driving traffic to your higher converting website, monitoring how that traffic converts and making adjustments as necessary.

Be forewarned that this entire process is an iterative one.

Therefore, you are never "finished" per se, but rather always monitoring, adjusting and creating new ways to deliver not only traffic to your website, but more importantly, ensuring that the traffic you do receive converts at a high level.


Bottom Line:

There's a saying that I think is apropos for when you've already done things backwards:

No matter how far you've traveled down the wrong path, turn around.

Most websites fail because they were created BACKWARDS.

Once you realize why your online presence is struggling and not yielding the results you intended, it's important that you fix what's wrong rather than simply giving up entirely and allocating your budget to other initiatives because you are too frustrated or don't know how to address your current problems.

By utilizing the 3-Phase Internet Marketing Execution Framework that we use at Biquitous, you can take the action necessary to create an online presence that works from the ground up the right way.

Then you can focus on the important stuff -- generating traffic, leads, and ultimately, sales.

At the end of the day, you don't care about complex strategies, processes and to-do lists.

As a business leader, you need real world results, and beyond that, a clear path to achieving those results, with a rational and strategic way of measuring them.

Your online presence should be an asset to your company and continuously generate measurable and repeatable cash flow.

You and your team will never achieve your desired outcomes if you work backwards and merely focus on traffic to the detriment of conversions.

Instead you must build a sound Internet marketing and website design strategy that was well thought out, researched, tested and implemented to perfection. ...Read More >>

Quality Content Remains Key For Your Website, Search Engine Search Results, & Google Authorship

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

Google Authorship & Google Publisher allows for an authors photo to appear next to their website or blog listings in Google search results. As Google has always said, quality content is key.  The link below illustrates another reason why it is important to blog regularly and try to become a thought leader in your industry … Continue reading Quality Content Remains Key For Your Website, Search Engine Search Results, & Google Authorship

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3 Low-Budget Marketing Strategies You Should Be Using Now

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Top Reasons Your Website Needs an Upgrade

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Your website needs an upgrade occasionally While it may seem like it, websites are not a “once and done” tool. Plastic surgery trends and treatments change. Technology changes. The average lifespan of a website is 3 to 7 years, depending...

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The Deep End Debuts Two E-books for Designers

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If you are a freelance graphic or web designer like me, then you know what it takes to keep your business fresh and thriving. I have recently completed writing two e-books that are specifically for designers who are looking to take their careers to the next level. They each work fine on their own, but […]

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How Do I Track Products Purchased

by @ All Forums

Hi guys,

One of my clients sells a small number of niche products online off their website.

However they want to know what products have been purchased that have come directly from other websites. Is there an easy way of knowing who is come from a different website and then bought one of their products? They use Paypal to sell their few products.

Any help appreciated

4 Big Projects to Improve Your Marketing Results

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When it comes to marketing tactics, it’s easy to get caught in the details. If you focused on one, big project what would improve your marketing efforts the most? Here are some suggestions. Improve Your Lead…

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Daily Internet Marketing News Feed 07/25/2011

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Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

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Web marketing stands for the marketing efforts which use the email and web services to drive sales for the company through websites or emails. Now, if one asks you what an SEO Expert is, you might answer easily because the optimize your site to market it online as well. But it’s a tough sight to […]

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Sometimes the right idea for a marketing campaign just resonates with viewers due to cleverness, humor, or its uplifting message. These campaigns will often make a splash on TV, but in the age of the internet, they are able to create tidal waves. Here are five marketing campaigns that went viral with people still remembering […]

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Biquitous Website and SEO Audit:  Proliability.com [Video]

Biquitous Website and SEO Audit: Proliability.com [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

I want to welcome you to the Biquitous Breakdown.

This is a special real-life series that analyzes and audits one website's Internet presence and SEO strategy in order to provide powerful takeaways for your website.

In other words, you're going to get an exclusive over-the-shoulder look at critical mistakes other companies are making and my recommendations for fixing them in a live video format.

My goal is to be honest in my assessments and provide that particular company with a concrete action plan to fix what's wrong, for their benefit and -- by extension -- your company's website as well.

The breakdown will focus 4 major areas:

  • First Impressions: Overall analysis of the website's look, feel, targeting, usability, and more
  • Second Impressions: Overall analysis of the website's social media and Web 2.0 presence
  • Top Level SEO: Analysis of the website's keywords, navigation, rankings, competition, backlink profile, content, and more
  • Page Level SEO: Analysis of individual page structure, tags, usability, and other details

I'll then provide a 3-step action plan for the biggest/fastest improvement to address any issues that I find.

This edition is going to focus on Proliability.com, a professional liability insurance company.

Proliability has some problems with sparse content, lack of a social media presence and -- most disturbing to me -- the possibility that they are paying for links, as well as other issues that need to be addressed immediately.

Let's get right to it:

(Click the "play" button to watch the video)

Here is the full transcript of the video:

Hello, this is Chris Fernandez, the Founder and CEO of Biquitous. And I want to welcome you to the Biquitous website and SEO breakdown, a special series that analyzes and audits one website's internet presence and SEO strategy in order to provide powerful takeaways for your website.

In other words, you're going to get an exclusive over-the-shoulder look at critical mistakes other companies are making and my recommendations for fixing them in a live video format. My goal is to be honest in my assessments and provide that particular company with a concrete action plan to fix what's wrong, for their benefit and, by extension, your company's website as well.

This series is going to analyze each website for four major characteristics.

First, I'm going to look at first impressions, the overall analysis of the website's look, feel, their targeting, trust factor, social proof, ease of use, professionalism, conversion factors and call to action.

Then, I'm going to look at second impressions. I'm going to look at an overall analysis of a website's social media presence, their blog and any other web 2.0 interaction that they have on their website.

Then, I'm going to roll up my sleeves and look at SEO. We're going to start with top-level SEO, looking at the overall website's keywords, navigation, their rankings, competition, back-link profile, content and other factors.

Then, we're going to dig one step deeper and look at page-level SEO for the structure, tags, and usability of on-page ranking factors.

After all is said and done, I'm going to give you a three step action plan for the biggest and fastest improvement for this company's website and SEO strategy, that you can then also use for your website.

So, let's get right into it.

So, today we're analyzing proliability.com. This is a professional liability insurance company, a subsidiary of Marsh, and they have this website that caters to professional liability insurance, malpractice insurance for different audiences and targets audiences in terms of the professionals that they're looking to target. Anything from dentists to pharmacists, real estate agents, etc., etc.. And they also do errors and omissions insurance for real estate professionals and other agents as well.

So, they want to be the number one provider of liability insurance in their target market. So, they asked me to analyze their website and agreed to have it for this series. So I'm going to take a look first at my first impressions.

What do I think when I come to this website?

Let's look at trust factors, the navigation and what the website itself looks like, what it's doing right and what it's doing wrong. So, the first thing I notice when I get to the website is, that it looks a bit cheesy. Now, this is nothing personal against Pro Liability, but when I come here it has cheesy stock photography. It's got no personal warmth to it. I don't feel a connection to this website. It feels cold, stale and more than anything, it feels like a landing page. I know it's a main website domain, but it feels like a professional landing page.

So, to me, this feels like something that was just put here to rank highly in the search engines. Now, I am biased, right? I'm a search engine optimization expert and internet marketing expert. So, to me, this is what I see when I see it. Maybe other folks, when they land here, they don't think that but there's something not right about this site.

When people come here and they look at it, it doesn't give them that warm feeling of trust, of authority, of being a real site that has great content, that cares about them, that's going to help them find the right insurance for them. It just has overly optimized sections. Look at it. They even bolded professional liability insurance, and I will warn that Google is going to start penalizing for over-optimized pages and sites, and this is a prime example of an over-optimized website and page. So, that's the first thing, warmth and it needs to cater more to being personable.

So, now I want to take a look at the actual navigation and ease of use of the site.

So, the site doesn't give any warm fuzzy feeling, and I know that it's kind of cold. Great. So, now can I find what I need?

Well, when I go to the drop-down menus, boy, that is absolutely daunting. There's a lot of stuff here. Now, I understand that you guys want to rank for this. Sites usually want to rank for all kinds of categories and get that SEO value. So, if I click, for instance, on athletic trainers, there's also a page level that, if we look at this, is athletic trainers.

This should be catered towards personal trainers, not athletic trainers. Now, I understand that they have a deal with NATA, N-A-T-A, which is an association of the National Athletic Trainers Association.

So, I understand that that's the nomenclature that they use, athletic trainers, but most personal training certification bodies use personal trainer. So, if I was online, I would never search for athletic trainer's insurance. I would search for personal trainer's insurance.

So, that's that kind of thing. Pro Liability should look at their nomenclature for their categories. Are you using the right words that you're going to attract for these pages? So, you're doing your title tags and all the on-page stuff as well. Again, when I come to this page, it has some generic picture here, athletic trainers. It's overly optimized.

Where's the value of this page? Why should I link to you? If I'm another site, or let's say I'm an athletic trainer and I'm on Google or Google+ or Facebook, why should I recommend this page to my friends? Why? Give a compelling reason to do so. Make it so that when I come to this site I feel welcomed, I feel like this is a valuable site that's helping me find what I want.

In other words, what does Pro Liability stand for? If I go back to your homepage, what's your unique selling proposition? What makes you different than all the other insurance companies out there? I'm sure you have some. Let's hear them. Let's see that front and center. Let's make this more warm and inviting.

Next, is content. There is no content. Now, I spoke with the folks at Pro Liability and they say that something that they want to work on, is adding a blog, adding some content. So, I would say get on that immediately, because there's nothing here where I can subscribe. There's a little bit of social media stuff down here but that's just to share stuff.

Where's your newsletter? Where's your, you know, something to keep in touch with me? Give me some way to keep in touch with folks before I leave.

And finally, there's this "My Account" thing at the top here. Either make that bigger or get rid of it entirely, because when I click on that, it brings up this page here, where I can log into my account. This right here is very difficult to understand and read. I don't have a username. Do I register? Oh, there's the register.

Now, there's some issues with the IT department, the marketing department all need to be on the same page and there's buy-in that needs to take place. Pro Liability's a very big company and Marsh is a very large company, and so, there's a lot of buy-in that needs to happen from the top level down. But things as simple as the copyright being 2008, customer service number being all the way at the bottom, having this old "Powered by Velocity" logo. These are all trust factors that make me kind of doubt that this site is legitimate, and it's stuff that you need to work on in addition to being difficult to use and not user-friendly at all.

I wanted to do a one-to-one comparison between Pro Liability and eHealth.com, which helps people find health insurance. To show that you can do this on a large scale and be more warm and inviting and have a much more better site that also caters to what you're trying to do.

So, if you look at eHealth, they do all the things right that you're supposed to do. The navigation's much simpler and cleaner. Look at that. It's much more inviting. You have pictures of real folks. It's not as generic. You've got new stuff with the video, all kinds of goodies here, that should be used as an example to Pro Liability as what can be done, and eHealth is a public company and they also make great content.

So, I know that Pro Liability had a problem with their content and creating, they called it boring content. The rule of thumb is content is never boring for the target audience that you're trying to attract. So, if we're talking about website design SEO, look at what we're doing right now, that's not boring to you guys out there. So, boring content is in the eye of the beholder. There's no such thing as boring content.

If you're worried about that, pick topics like eHealth Insurance does where they add commentary on what's going on in the world today for health insurance, like the Obama Care stuff that's going through the Supreme Court right now. All those kind of things, eHealth makes comments on that, they release press releases and content based on current events and things like that to make their content viral, so people share it that care about those issues. I think Pro Liability can do a lot of that same kind of stuff to increase their content.

So, now let's look at Second Impressions.

A second impression is a website's social media, web 2.0 presence and blog. The good news is, that's not going to take very long because Pro Liability has no social media presence, no blog and no web 2.0 interaction. So, I don't even need to spend time on this because, you know as a company in today's world, you're dead in the water if you do not have social media or web 2.0 sharing in some way and fashion.

So, that's something that Pro Liability needs to get immediately, as part of their overall refresh and site design enhancements. That's what they need to do and they need to jump on that immediately.

So, now let's move on to the SEO side of things.

So, the good news about doing these kinds of analyses is that each site and every single company is different. Different in what they're trying to achieve, different in their web presence, different in their SEO profile, and different in my advice to what you need to do to fix things. So, for Pro Liability let's first take a look at their overall metrics in terms of their trust and page rank and those kinds of things, which I like to start with to do a top down view of everything.

So, using SEOmoz, I did a quick rank check of the three keywords that Pro Liability wanted to rank for. With "professional liability insurance" probably being the number one keyword that they want to rank for. So, if we take a quick look about where they're ranking there, they're doing very well so far in the number three position for "professional liability insurance."

So, that's very good because that's their number one keyword that they want to rank for. For "liability insurance," they're not showing up at all in the top ten. And then for "malpractice insurance," they're showing up just now on the first page at number ten. So, the recommendation I would give there is, "Hey, do you really want to go after 'malpractice insurance' or do you just want to go after your top two, which is 'professional liability insurance' and 'liability insurance' and some offshoot keywords of those as well. And get rid of this malpractice or make a different website for malpractice because it's kind of diverting some of the keyword juice.

So, I then wanted to look at Pro Liability's back-link discovery, and this is basically how many sites are linking back to proliability.com.

This is a big determining factor in where you rank in the search engines, in fact, that's the biggest determining factor in how you rank in the search engines. And this is a view over the last five years and you can see that Pro Liability has had a steady increase, or actually it's been pretty steady in terms of their back-link discovery. In other words, not much. This is a monthly view, so monthly this is what they've been getting.

You can see that in the last six to eight months they went absolutely nuts in terms of getting back-links and discovery and referring domains. So, let's take a look at that now on a ccumulative view and you'll see over the last five years how they've grown.

So you can see here the back-links were very steady took a big growth here in '08, continued through '09 and it then it really exploded last year. Then over here you're going to see a nice steady stream of referring domain names. Now, this is individual domain names that are referring traffic and having a back-link to Pro Liability. Now, this is interesting, I want to show something here. So, what I'm going to do is I'm going to go to two-year view of this same index. And what I want to show here is if you look at the referring domain name discovery over the last two years, it's gone from about 600 to about 1,200 which is about double.

However, the back-link discovery has gone from 5,000 to 20,000 with a big bulk of that coming in the last, I'd say year or so. What does that tell me? It tells me Pro Liability's getting a lot of back-links, however, they're not getting them from a wide and diverse set of domain names.

So, this could be a problem for unnatural looking link profiles and that kind of thing which I'm going to talk about in just one second.

So, what I wanted to look at really quick now, was the anchor text that's being used to link to the Pro Liability website. And what I found was out of the top thousand referring anchor texts I found, that the majority of them said "liability insurance" and then "Marsh liability insurance," the bulk of them.

So, if Pro Liability wants to go after the term “liability insurance,” they're going to have to need to step up their game in terms of getting back-links and getting a more natural profile. Because what's happening is I believe the reason that they're not ranking as high and work they need to do is because their back-link profile does not look natural.

All their anchor text has keywords in it. If you look everything says 'liability insurance,' 'Marsh liability insurance' or some variation thereof. there's no click here there's no click for more information there's no just what their domain name they just have thirty back-links with just proliability.com, thirty out of a thousand. That does not look natural. So I want to warn Pro Liability with regards to over SEOing their offsite link-building and their on-page link building which we already talked about.

Now, I want to talk about maybe some paid links that Pro Liability has, and I don't want to get them in trouble but I want to address it because it's very important. Let's take a look at that right now.

One of the websites that I found a back-link to Pro Liability from, was from this website here, Middle Tennessee State University, in a section that they call "recreation and leisure services" and as you see here Pro Liability's at the bottom under “recreational therapy links” stuck with “American Therapeutic Recreation Association,” “National Recreation and Parks Association,” and here's “liability insurance”. I don't know, that's a little grey to me. Looks a little bit paid. Pro Liability should be very aware of what's going on there and making sure they're not paying for links.

Let me show you another example. This example, this is from a website called Money Cake, now Pro Liability is getting tons of links from Money Cake and I wondered why. Why are they getting so many links from Money Cake? Well, I found it. The reason is they're getting a link from Money Cake because they're on their blogroll for Marsh liability insurance, which is a direct link to proliability.com. Now, I don't know about you, but a blogroll means you link to other people's blogs that are about those topics and if you look, there's payday loans and all kinds of other things in here. This looks iffy to me guys, this looks like a paid link. I just want to warn you about this, I'm not trying to call you out or get you in trouble, but Google frowns upon this kind of stuff, so this is another example of what I think may be a paid link. I could be wrong, but I'm just pointing it out.
Let me show you one more quick example.

In this final example, this is from the Orange County BAR Association and this seems to be a sponsors section right over here that has 'Marsh Insurance' a link to Marsh which goes to proliability.com. So, this out of all the paid links or the potential paid links that I've just shown is probably the most legitimate one because you're on a sponsored section here. So, this is more, maybe more acceptable and more legit than some of the other ones because it's a known sponsored section. But this looks like a paid link and if this is part of the link-building strategy that you guys used in the last half of last year that showed that big explosion of links that I just showed in the other screenshot. Be very careful this could backfire on you and prevent you from ranking high, especially with Google Panda just being released.

So, I just wanted to go over some other quick little sort of housecleaning, housekeeping details for Pro Liability to cover.

Of course, this breakdown, this audit is not comprehensive I don't have the time in a short little video like this to show everything that's wrong with their website and what to do but I'm trying to hit some big points that they need to address. So, let's finish off with some quick housekeeping things that I think they should take care of.

And what I noticed is when I look, aside from the site being overly SEO optimized, which we've covered already, it needs to tone that down, it needs to be more real, and all that good stuff but aside from that, I looked at the code on the backend. Just did a quick view of it and I found a couple different things.

First of all, there's this flash pack navigation system and I noticed that on the Marsh or the Pro Liability page when you have your dropdown menu this is flash. Now I want to warn you guys, or JavaScript, excuse me, Java, I want to make sure that search engines can crawl this. Because sometimes they have difficulty crawling these navigation elements if they're not done in the right way.

Have your team, your programming team, make sure that this can be crawled and indexed by Google. I think it is, I think its working fine but I want you guys to make sure of that. That's the first thing I noticed. Next thing I noticed was there's no canonicalization of your pages. So you need to have the tag that says rel equals canonical on all your pages so if there's ever duplicate content, Google knows which page is the right page it also serves you for your home page so if you have a home page for instance that has a trailing slash, or just says ".com," or ".com/," or without the "www," if it just says "proliability" without the "www," like that, it'll go to the right page and it won't be seen as duplicate content by Google and other search engines.

So, I also wanted to talk just briefly about your title tags I know that in a lot of your pages they're very bland. And you may want to think about including some professional branding in your title tags so professional liability insurance, malpractice insurance, and maybe you stick up here something, you know, where it says proliability.com, you know, like that, and have the little pipe or hyphen there at the top just to sort of brand your page.

Just to make it more search engine friendly and more people friendly so it looks like a company rather than just having cold keywords with nothing else, same thing for your descriptions the description tags look OK and then I noticed keywords, you guys actually use keywords?

I mean, come on now. I noticed that you don't just use a couple keywords but like a hundred different keywords, look at this. This is ridiculous. While keywords may not help your ranking anymore search engines don't use them anymore for ranking. They can hurt your ranking. In fact Bing just came out recently and said that they look at the keywords tag but to look for spam and spammy websites. So you're telling Bing “hey come look at my spammy website and penalize me because I've got all these keywords.” Get rid of your keywords on all your pages as well part of just this housekeeping, kind of cleansing process.

And last but not least is page rank leakage. If you have way too many categories coming from your home page to other pages, you will lose page rank. And each one of those pages will rank less and less in Google because you're passing it on, your initial site's page rank value to too many different pages. So you may want to think about consolidating some categories or doing something else to help the navigation so you don't lose that SEO value. OK? So that is some quick and dirty SEO top level stuff.

Let's look at page level SEO stuff.

(Page level SEO transcription missing)

So, now I want to give you a three step website and SEO action plan for proliability.com.

First, Pro Liability needs to redesign the site for user friendliness, warmth, their unique selling proposition, and not just a cold stale landing page for insurance. Proliability.com wants to be the number one provider of liability insurance. Well, there's two ways to do that. You can have the cheapest prices or the best, most user-friendly experience and customer service. They need to tweak their website for either value proposition, but pick one and run with it.

Second, they need to execute a complete content, social media and inbound marketing strategy immediately. They'll do that by taking a ground up approach and getting to know their end customer. Who they are, what do they want? And how can proliability.com help them? Pro Liability then needs to include a blog and make the content engaging, entertaining, timely, but most of all, shareable. Then, the company needs to direct a complete social media strategy immediately and start talking to their customers, and potential customers.

Third, the website, metatags, the content, the navigation, URL's are too optimized. That worries me a little bit. Pro Liability might get penalized with Google's upcoming changes to their search algorithm. They should be very careful. Also, if they are they should stop paying for links immediately. And if they aren't then construct a more natural back-link profile with links that don't contain any keywords at all mixed with partial and full matched anchored text links to different pages on their website, which they're not doing right now.

Then, with their content, start utilizing inbound marketing and legitimate link outreach, to improve their overall SEO profile.

The bottom line, proliability.com has the potential to be a much larger player in the professional liability insurance game. With more attention to creating something of value and engaging their end-user with a more friendly and easier to use website, they'll start to see not only their traffic and rankings improve but more importantly for the company, their leads and sales increase as well.

This is Chris Fernandez and I really hope you enjoyed this webinar and got a lot of value from it. To gain access to even more great content like this that will help you systematically fix what's wrong with your internet marketing strategy and gain a critical leg up on your competition, I invite you to read the latest blog post on the Biquitous blog and follow us through whatever social media channel you prefer or receive updates sent directly to your inbox. Thanks so much.

 ...Read More >>

Website Pixel Width Revisited For 2017

by @ All Forums

Ten to fifteen years ago we had regular, recurrent and prolonged debates about the width of a website.

Back then, monitors were growing in width from 640 pixels to 800 to 1024. Back then, much of the debate about width was "how wide can I make it and still fit on a person's desktop monitor".

Instead, many of our concerns about width are focused on the puny width of a cell phone. At what width do we make a responsive site transform from desktop to mobile?

Today, many desktop monitors are so wide that reading long lines across the entire width is difficult for many people.

So, perhaps we need to consider throttling the desktop width to make long-line reading easy for most people. Of course, we could increase font size because huge fonts are easier to read at 2000 pixels wide then the tiny text of wikipedia. But, I don't think that's the answer.

I tend to look at large, extremely popular sites that monetize with ads for my guidance. Here are three of the most common approaches that I have seen

1) Wikipedia is totally responsive. They scale page width to fit your monitor or device and allow long lines to run thousands of pixels across the widest monitor you can find.

2) The New York Times seems to assume that you have a desktop monitor that is about 1000 wide - and their design centers in the middle of your monitor view. It will then respond to narrower monitors, but at about 800 pixels wide they are willing to allow their design to be lost of the right side of the monitor.

3) The Washington Post seems to assume that your monitor is about 1200 pixels wide and centers in the middle of your screen. Then, if your monitor is any less than their max width, it will respond smoothly - by abandoning columns - down to about 300 pixels wide.

My site is a little less than 1000 pixels wide and responds when the screen width gets down to about 500 pixels. Then images and column widths shrink to maintain a single column design.

I am trying to decide what to do with a new site.

What do you think? Have you seen any sites that you think handle different monitor and device widths well?

Why Ux And Seo

by @ All Forums

Were it not for Ann Smarty, I would not have been included with the "experts" in this article. It was cool to be asked. I'm at the bottom of the list of experts and I think the only one who included accessibility in my response. 

 

Marketing without UX is like throwing darts in the dark.

 

That cracked me up, as it is exactly what I wrote in an article somewhere years ago.  Funny to see the analogy again made by someone else.  There's some good stuff in the article. Worth a peek.

 

25 EXPERT OPINIONS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF UX IN MARKETING

7 Tips to Boost Social Media Engagement for Businesses

by Sharon Conwell @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

As a business owner or marketer, you are surely already fully aware of the importance that social media has as a component of your marketing campaigns. Facebook alone is leading the way with over 2 billion active users, so I don’t have to tell you that this market is huge. So you’ve got your content…

The post 7 Tips to Boost Social Media Engagement for Businesses appeared first on Return On Now.

Web Fonts: Back to Basics

by Agi Fidelis @ The Deep End Design

Text is simply the most reliable and most expressive medium for passing across information on the web.  As a designer who designs for the web, having a sound understanding of how typography works on the web is a great skill that you should have under your belt.  Way back in elementary school, my teacher, (name […]

The post Web Fonts: Back to Basics appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Improve Your LinkedIn Profile With 13 Easy Tweaks

by Shelley Pringle @ Advisor Web Marketing

One of the big banks called me recently—not to sell me a credit card but to inquire about social media training. I asked how they found me; LinkedIn was their answer. It’s not just the big banks who are using LinkedIn to hire suppliers and employees. It’s estimated 5 out of 6 HR managers and recruiters review […]

The post Improve Your LinkedIn Profile With 13 Easy Tweaks appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

5 Easy Steps to Hire the Perfect Web Development Subcontractor

by Anne Barrios @ The Deep End Design

Creating a powerful website is just like constructing a great retail store. If you are a purely visual web designer, (and don’t know the first thing about coding,) it makes sense to team up with a great developer so that you can deliver fully functional websites to your clients. But one of the biggest hurdles […]

The post 5 Easy Steps to Hire the Perfect Web Development Subcontractor appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Youtube - Boo Who

by @ All Forums

Been awhile since I've toyed with creating videos and they totally did away with the old annotations. The kind you could create in Photoshop and overlay as transparent pngs, then link to a web page. Blows the creativity I craved out the window. And I got clicks from it too. Sure, one can still use links to an associated website but each video also requires linking to a playlist or another video, but the space is limited and so is the size of their so called 'cards' which I think sucks too. Probably just an easier way for most to implement.

 

DANGIT. I was going to try some YT adwords too. Not with this furbared setup.

WSI MarketBuilders Daily Internet Marketing News Feed 07/18/2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

How to kill an internet marketing program

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting

Company leaders in Chicago and Milwaukee rarely arrive at work and intentionally try to kill an internet or web marketing program. However, over the last 20 years of working with large and small businesses, I’ve observed three ways companies kill internet marketing programs.

Skeptical or apathetic leaders. While educating senior leaders on internet marketing strategy and tactics are vital for success, a skeptical or apathetic leader will kill an internet marketing program. Their lack of commitment and support makes ...

Following Links To See Who To Market To

by @ All Forums

A request came into these forums that was unusual, especially for a forum instead of a web site or blog.

 

Hi team at Cre8asiteforums,

I'm emailing you because I came across this page (links to forums topic)
I noticed you linked to one of my favorite articles (links to the article)

Just wanted to let you know that I created a similar version of it, just more updated and visual.

Its here: (Provides link to the new article)

 

 

Is this a new type of practice and why bother to target a forums, especially in lieu of the fact that all links in these forums are no-follow. I can see it being logical for a blog post and especially when there is an established relationship between the author and site owner.

 

Thoughts?

 

What SEO’s need to know about Google Crawl Budgets – SEO 101

What SEO’s need to know about Google Crawl Budgets – SEO 101

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

Yahoo out, Altaba in, and the mobile interstitial penalty is rolling out. The bulk of the show, however, is focused on some key steps to creating a site that is ready for SEO. This January 26, 2017 SEO 101 podcast is available now: listen or Download (right click and save). Tune in to SEO 101 […]

The post What SEO’s need to know about Google Crawl Budgets – SEO 101 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

Where Do You See Your Skills Or Work In 5 Or 10 Years?

by @ All Forums

Recovering from knee replacement surgery has allowed me time to step back and more or less watch and read all the industry related news, articles, etc.

 

Most of you have been working in SEO, or web dev/design, or site ownership in any number of ways. Do you think you will be doing the same work in the future or retiring from it? 

 

I was chatting with a friend who said more of the long-timers are becoming teachers. I was thinking of going out to my local community and doing that.  

 

Do you like keeping up with all the advances and changes in tech or has it become a chore?

The Insider’s Guide & Toolkit to Leveraging Your Online Reputation

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

People are talking about you without you. Before the Internet, businesses controlled their public image and message through television, yellow pages, radio and print advertisements. But now, people are openly discussing your business image, products and services on social networks, …

How Delta Airlines Used Twitter To Save My Trip

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

(Read Time: 5 Minutes)

Delta Airlines and Twitter just saved my trip -- yeah, I'm as shocked as you are!

I had read about how large Fortune 500 companies were using Twitter for customer service, outreach and for more than just to "engage" -- which I previously wrote was a bad idea in and of itself.

But what I hadn't yet experienced is the power of social media -- specifically Twitter -- when I needed it the most.

Here's a lesson in customer service, social media, and how your company can use this powerful medium to actually get real work done and increase profits, not just waste time.

First the bad news:

  • My flight had been canceled with no notice from the airline -- I was lucky to check-in online the day before and see a nice red CANCELLED next to the flight information.
  • As a result of Hurricane Irene, the wait time for Delta's 800 number was 1 - 1.5 hours
  • I tried changing the itinerary online, but was incurring change fees of up to $1,000 for a flight THEY cancelled -- just on principle alone I was not going to accept that.
  • I was in a foreign country (OK, Canada, but still...) where my mobile phone was only good for Wi-Fi at Starbucks...dicey at best.

So, with no recourse, I called the toll free number and waited on hold with the phone on speaker and bided my time...

But then I tried something else: The hold message said to try Twitter, specifically their @DeltaAssist account.

I'd often heard about folks that were stranded in airports or faced with long hold times getting their reservations changed easily on Twitter, so I decided to give it a shot.

19 "Tweets" and 15 minutes later, I saw the power of this medium of only 140 characters to change the world as we know it -- or at least offer frustrated travelers another form of reaching their destination.

Here's the exact conversation:
confirmation # GPVKT7 -- need help, flight was cancelled for no reason, just found out as I got lucky to log in. Tried changing times online
but, it wants to charge me huge change fees for a flight that I did not cancel. Please help.
So you'd like to change to a 2:52p flight on the 29th now? ^WG
 no, ideally I would like to still depart tomorrow around the same time, even if rerouted through a different city.
 would like to depart Toronto, arrive in SJC around the same time
 if you need me to fly from Toronto to another city and connect on to SJC that's fine. It does not have to go through Minn.
 ^WG: wanted to make sure you got my last messages re: confirmation # GPVKT7
 For the 28th, I only have morning flights that make two stops. Ex: leave @ 9:45a, change in DTW & SLC, get into SJC @ 4:10p.^WG
If I chose those will there be any change fees?
 No, there wouldn't be any change fees. ^WG
 I might be ok with something leaving in the morning and changing over a couple of times. I want to leave Tor as late as possible.
with as few stops/changeovers as possible.
 ^ WG: any options for later times? re: conf. # GPVKT7
The 9:45a on the 28th is the latest I have. ^WG
 ^ WG: Ok, It departs Toronto @9:45 AM, 2 changeovers: DTS and then SLC? Arrive SJC from SLC @ 4:10?
That's correct. ^WG
 ^WG: OK, please proceed with the change. What do you need from me? Please confirm via email.
I got all I need, thanks. The ticket's reissued & the email's sent. ^WG
 ^WG: Thank you for your help, It was really appreciated

Now the good news:

  • This was all done while I was still on hold
  • The process was pretty smooth, aside from some lag time while the representative was "talking" with other people
  • I flew home without a hitch - and had mostly forgiven the previous cancellation and attempt to charge me exorbitant change fees

The Ultimate Power of Social Media

This got me seriously thinking about the power of the Internet, and social media in particular.

As if I didn't already realize how important it was not only to my own company, but for our clients as well.

But it was almost like a second awakening.

Have we been vastly underutilizing this medium as a means to offer customers a higher level of support, service and peace of mind?

While devoting a full time staff to a Twitter account might not be right for your company, having some form of social media IS an absolute must!

If you offer real-time services or services that change nebulously, or often require some form of customer service, then giving customers a way to contact you through social media rather than clogging up your phone lines or waiting a full day for an email reply can be a powerful and effective way to cut costs while at the same time serving customers at a much higher level.

The Bottom Line:

In today's world, we might not always "get" Twitter, Facebook and all that "social media stuff", but as time passes, and as a leader of your organization responsible for Internet marketing and customer retention and outreach, you simply cannot ignore it any longer.

This was just one very personal example of social media being used by one of the largest airlines in the world to better serve their customers.

There are countless other companies out there doing the same thing -- such as Dell blowing out obsolete inventory through Twitter -- that are closing the gap and probably surpassing your organization with this additional mode of customer service within your industry.

If you haven't already, it's time to look at the powerful ways social media can become a REAL business tool for your company and not something a teenager does just for kicks. ...Read More >>

About Spork Marketing

About Spork Marketing


Spork Marketing

Learn all about the Spork Marketing team, history, and philosophy. If you're wondering what makes Spork Marketing interesting, this is the page for you.

How Do You Build Your Website?

by @ Web Site Design

Https and SEO. Should you make the switch from http?

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

Should you make the switch to https from http? There is a lot of discussion lately on whether or not sites should switch to https. I wanted to write an article to talk about the SEO implications of switching. In some cases sites can make the switch easily with no obvious effects on their rankings and traffic. But, in other cases, the switch can cause serious issues. […]

The post Https and SEO. Should you make the switch from http? appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

What Width Are You Designing For Now ?

by @ All Forums

A decade ago lots of people were making their websites to fit a 640-pixel-wide monitor, then an 800 monitor, then a 1024....

 

.... and now with mobile we are being squeezed down to the microformat of 300 wide.

 

They call that progress???

 

Lots of people are accomplishing this with designs that automatically resize to fit the device they are being viewed upon.

 

How are you handling this?   If you have not redesigned your site in the past couple of years you probably have lots of people looking at your site with devices that are smaller than you expected.

 

And, with lots of people using enormously wide monitors... what is the upper width that you are assuming?     And, is that important?

 

I don't know the answers to this stuff... but it sure looks like a briar patch.  

Adobe CS5 vs. Adobe CS6: The Upgrades and Differences

by Amanda Gant @ The Deep End Design

The Adobe Creative Suite family of products -spanning from CS1 to CS6, the latest incarnation on the market– has been extraordinarily popular amongst graphic designers, website developers and graphics editors of all types. This is with good reason; the products offered are great, extremely diverse and enormously powerful as digital design tools. CS6 has recently […]

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How To Do Market Research Online

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Market research is probably one of the most crucial process that people tend to overlook when they start out in […]

The post How To Do Market Research Online appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

A Beautiful Site of Beautiful Sites

by ian @ good karma

I’ve always wished I was a better web designer. In another lifetime, I think I was. In this lifetime, I’m sort of a stalker of really talented designers – always envying the pixel pushing magic & moxie of others I can’t quite match. Here is a beautiful site, of beautiful sites. If I had a […]

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19 Brands With A Cult Following (and What You Can Learn From Them)

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Here are tips to help build a better brand for your company       To view the entire article, click this link (from Hubspot): https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/brands-with-cult-following

The post 19 Brands With A Cult Following (and What You Can Learn From Them) appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Internet Harassment

by @ Internet Law and Ethics

Responsive Web Design: How Businesses Risk Losing Customers by Ignoring Google’s Recommended Mobile Friendly Configuration

by webmaster @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

Mobile Internet users are expected to outnumber desktop users by next year. It is therefore no surprise that Google is paying close attention to this development. And so should you. Because if your website is not yet “mobile responsive,” you may be turning away prospects who browse your web pages via smartphones, tablets, or laptops. […]

Southwest Florida Based Marketing Agency LW Marketing and Consulting LLC To Exhibit at 2016 Community Business Expo in Bonita Springs

by lwmarketing @ LW Marketing & Consulting

LW Marketing will be exhibiting their products and services at the 2016 Community Business Expo, organized by the Bonita Springs Chamber of Commerce. The event will take place from 3pm to 7pm at the Promenade Shops in Bonita Springs, FL. The digital marketing agency, based in Bonita Springs, has a diverse client base all throughout […]

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Infographic: Consumer Psychology & E-Commerce Checkout

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

It is certainly no secret that e-commerce is big business. It is quite difficult to find a business these days which doesn’t have some sort of online presence to represent them. Most e-commerce entrepreneurs are only too aware of how fundamental strong website design can be. A website represents a brand, invokes consumer trust, and […]

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Google AdWords Demystified Seminar

by Neal Olson @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

  Community Room at Enterprise Bank   18 Palmer Street | Lowell, MA, 01852 October 28 @ 8:00 am – 9:30 am Free Admission Have you been thinking about running ads on Google’s AdWords advertising platform but not sure where to start? Are you using AdWords but you know you could do better? Do you wonder if […]

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How to: Prelaunch Your Online Course or Digital Download WITHOUT Hacks, Gimmicks or Gurus

by ian @ good karma

A bit earlier this week I was leafing through the “Teachable” private FB page (for teachers and trainers and folks using their platform to sell stuff) and there was a somewhat well known guy promoting his “how to prelaunch your course” course within the private FB community. (which is pretty much a no-no in most […]

The post How to: Prelaunch Your Online Course or Digital Download WITHOUT Hacks, Gimmicks or Gurus appeared first on good karma.

[Video] Customers Are Searching for Local Businesses Online – and How Your Business Can Survive the Shift

by webmaster @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

Do you still think that a listing on the yellow pages is enough for prospects to find your local business? If so, this is a wake-up call. The truth is this: paying customers are finding more and more ways to research products and services in their area. Widespread Internet access and mobile devices enable customers […]

News on Mobile vs Desktop Index, Hidden Content, Ranking Factors – Episode 270

News on Mobile vs Desktop Index, Hidden Content, Ranking Factors – Episode 270

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

In the 270th Episode of SEO 101, Ross Dunn and John Carcutt discuss Google’s mobile-first focus and announcements to that effect led many to believe the indexes would be split but, the latest news seems to discount that. John and Ross discuss the potential accuracy of the news, along with similar discussions around hidden content. […]

The post News on Mobile vs Desktop Index, Hidden Content, Ranking Factors – Episode 270 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

How Video Marketing Helps Create Authority Positioning by Attracting Attention, Engaging Audiences and Building Trust

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

How Video Marketing Helps Create Authority Positioning by Attracting Attention, Engaging Audiences and Building Trust One of the biggest challenges […]

The post How Video Marketing Helps Create Authority Positioning by Attracting Attention, Engaging Audiences and Building Trust appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Web Consulting that Works: Attract, Convince, Convert.

Web Consulting that Works: Attract, Convince, Convert.


The Deep End Design

Struggling to attract customers? With The Deep End's web consulting, design & marketing, you’ll see more traffic, more engagement, and more revenue.

Why Interactive Marketing will be Big in 2016.

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting


Remember back in school when you were handed a thick textbook and told to read from it to get the information needed for class? It wasn’t always the most fun then, so why are we expecting customers to enjoy it now, especially in a world leaning towards quicker and faster information. Customers are always looking for ways to connect and learn more, but your content needs have more than just words. Adding engaging elements to your content means that ...

Google Updates: How They Affect SEO Campaigns in 2017

by Charlie Brown @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

Google changes its search algorithm frequently. But it is easy to overlook when changes happen, because Google does not announce it in most cases. The onus is on online marketers to detect the change, typically by witnessing noticeable changes in SEO performance after the fact. If you find some erratic SEO performance shifts and can’t…

The post Google Updates: How They Affect SEO Campaigns in 2017 appeared first on Return On Now.

Atlanta Physician is Revolutionizing Medicine and Leveraging the Power of the Internet to Improve Lives

by internetandwebmarket @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

A longtime client referred Dr. Dana Piccirillo to us for help with his website and to grow his Medical practice. Admittedly, his mission to introduce a revolutionary approach to health and medicine is what caught our attention. “More Drugs is not the Answer,” was the slogan that the Doctor used to convey his overarching philosophy. […]

WSI MarketBuilders Announces Record Revenue Growth and New Client Acquisition for the First 6 Months of 2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Digital Marketing Agency announces 206% growth by helping business grow their revenue in a tough economy with search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, website design, mobile marketing, and internet consulting services. SACRAMENTO, CA, July 06, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/ — WSI …

Search Network with Display Select– Should you take Google’s recommendation?

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

Have you seen popups in your AdWords Search account that recommend enabling a campaign setting called “Search Network with Display Select”? Clicking on “Learn More” provides a compelling business case as to why this switch will be profitable for you.       Should you take Google’s advice and make the switch? We advise against […]

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Marketing Consultant Job Description Template | ZipRecruiter

Marketing Consultant Job Description Template | ZipRecruiter


ZipRecruiter

Attract the right candidate for your growing company using a ZipRecruiter job description template. Customize to fit your exact needs.

How One Website Improvement Helped This Salon Furniture Company

by internetandwebmarket @ WebConsultingAndMarketing.com

It is very common for entrepreneurs and businesses to obsess and focus solely on website design; however, we encourage an equal emphasis be placed on its performance and user experience. These critical factors are often overlooked, but have a significant impact on the success of a marketing campaign and subsequent earning potential. Salon equipment supplier, […]

The Ultimate Copywriting Guide to Boosting Landing Page Conversions

by Farhad Khurshed @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Landing pages are invaluable in helping businesses turn traffic into qualified leads and eventually money in the bank. Although the […]

The post The Ultimate Copywriting Guide to Boosting Landing Page Conversions appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Web Accessibility and Your WordPress Website

by WP_Dave @ Tina Reed Johnson

What is Web accessibility? According to Wikipedia, “Web accessibility refers to the inclusive practice of removing barriers that prevent interaction with, or access to websites, by people with disabilities. When sites are correctly designed, developed and edited, all users have equal access to information and functionality.” As your customers or audience are aging or develop challenges […]

The post Web Accessibility and Your WordPress Website appeared first on Tina Reed Johnson.

The Power of Mobile Marketing for Your Business

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

When was the last time you checked your phone to: find a contact, review an email, send a text, look up an address or listen to music?  New research finds that iPhone users are more active than most when it comes to utilizing their mobile devices.
TechCrunch reveals that Apple iPhone users are the most likely among mobile device owners to conduct research, buy goods and do their banking, all on the comfort of their mobile devices.  
This research ...

10 Best Online Marketing Strategies

10 Best Online Marketing Strategies


The Balance

Top 10 Internet marketing strategies to attract more people to your website, increase customers and enhance branding of your company and products.

Moz’s Recommended List of SEO/Marketing Consultants, Firms & Agencies

Moz’s Recommended List of SEO/Marketing Consultants, Firms & Agencies


Rand's Blog

Looking for SEO or Digital Marketing help? Here's a list of recommended companies that we know and love (and their average costs). We suggest contacting several to find the right fit.

5 Current E-Commerce Design Trends

by Cameron Francis @ The Deep End Design

In the ecommerce world, customers are King. This is the reason ecommerce designs are continually being enhanced and evolving to produce the best possible user experience. As the desires and requirement of internet shoppers keep changing, based upon mobile technology advancements, so do ecommerce design methodologies. We have compiled a list of trends we expect […]

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Social Blunder: How to Avoid the Crisis and Escape Alive

by Sara Lippert @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

We’ve told you before how companies can end up making social media fails. If not, you should definitely check those out in the link, as they’re sure to provide you some laughs. While you may never experience a social blunder as awful as any of those examples, chances are you may make a mistake at […]

The post Social Blunder: How to Avoid the Crisis and Escape Alive appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

New Year’s Resolutions for Business Owners

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

New Year’s Resolutions for Business Owners Well, we are finishing up 2016 and it is time for everyone to start rolling out their New Year’s resolutions to make themselves better. It is a good time to set in stone something that you want to focus on in 2017, but why not do that for your […]

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In What Ways Can You Contribute To A World Of "better Websites For A Better World"?

by @ Nonprofits on the Web

Top Elements of Responsive Website Design

by Cameron Francis @ The Deep End Design

The web is rapidly going mobile. As an increasing number of people access the internet using mobile devices, the requirement for responsive site design keeps intensifying. You can use these top responsive design tools to help you create user-friendly responsive web designs. FitText FitText assists you by making flexible font-sizes for your responsive layout. FitText […]

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Google Webmaster And Switching To Https

by @ Search Engine Optimization

Website Download Speed

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

This topic may sound too technical to deal with, but ignore it at your website’s SEO peril.  Google measures how long it takes for a website page to download and be visible, and they lower your SEO keyword rankings if … Continue reading

3 Ways a Website Audit Can Positively Impact Your Business

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

You have built your website, filled it with keyword rich content, and it should be a key component in helping you achieve your sales goals. However, something is missing. What could it be? A website audit can hold the key in determining what’s holding your website back from peak performance. Here are 3 ways. #1 […]

The post 3 Ways a Website Audit Can Positively Impact Your Business appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Non-profit graphic design: how to design beautiful work on a tight budget

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Working for a non-profit can be an exciting venture that can provide you with experience and also help build your marketing repertoire. On the other hand, many non-profits (especially smaller ones) don’t have the budget to afford fancy images or hours and hours of billable time. If these barriers exist, don’t let them stop you […]

The post Non-profit graphic design: how to design beautiful work on a tight budget appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How Industrial Websites Can Reap Benefits of How-to Guides

by Prasson Gupta @

How-to guides can be highly effective for helping to boost industrial SEO. While business-to-consumer websites have witnessed tremendous success with these marketing tools, how-to guides can also provide great benefits for B2B industry content marketing. The Benefits of How-to Guides for Industrial SEO For instance, a well-written how-to guide can help your company show off […]

The post How Industrial Websites Can Reap Benefits of How-to Guides appeared first on .

Seth Godin On Ad Blocking - And Web Ads

by @ Monetizing Your Web Site

Penguin 4.0 Recovery Case Studies

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

I’m excited to present these case studies showing what appears to be Penguin recoveries for several sites. Penguin 4.0 officially launched on September 23, 2016 (although we don’t know if Google actually put the wheels in motion a few days prior.) When Penguin first launched there didn’t seem to be much change and I didn’t hear anyone shouting that they had recovered from Penguin. Related: Penguin 4.0 […]

The post Penguin 4.0 Recovery Case Studies appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

The Complete Guide To Finding and Hiring A Social Media Manager

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

 Read Time: (10 - 15 Minutes)

When hiring someone to be in charge of your company’s social media presence, there are things that you can teach, and things you can't.

The key is knowing the difference between the two and hiring someone that has the potential to be a rock star for your company’s entire online presence from the get-go.

In other words, don’t try and fit a square peg into a round hole.

In this post I’m going to show you the same step-by-step process we use at Biquitous to attract the very best talent that will completely eliminate your frustration with finding and hiring the right social media manager for your company.

Step 1: Start With A Top Down Approach

Before this process begins, you need to first understand the fundamental issue that speaks to the essence of not only what social media is, but the core of every single person working for your organization.

Essentially there are things that you can teach and things that you can't.

What we have learned in our time hiring, training and utilizing various social media managers is that there are traits that certain positions must have that are naturally hard-wired only within certain people.

From a fundamental level, it’s probably not wise for your introverted CFO, your tech-averse product manager, or someone on your outside sales team, to be the face of your social media presence if it’s simply not in their DNA.

So, for a social media manager you should look for someone who is:

  • Social ONLINE: sometimes very different than being social OFFLINE
  • Accountable: task driven, goal oriented, a bit OCD
  • Creative: asks thoughtful, provoking questions and always seems to be ahead of the curve in their thinking about a particular task
  • Knows the temperature of the room: understands boundaries, appropriateness, timing and sensitivity
  • Passionate: about your niche, or similar niches; excited to learn what they don’t know
  • Enjoys writing and interacting with your audience: has a dynamic online presence – aka: “voice” – and/or personality traits suited to your company’s objectives and marketplace
  • Understands social media on a deep level: has one or more social/blogging accounts personally across multiple channels
  • Learns and adapts quickly: e.g. how to use tools like HootSuite, nuances of posting to Google+, timing/frequency of interactions, etc.

You’ll hear me say this often, but it is not important that a potential hire know all the technical stuff, procedures or your company-specific nuances.

These types of “procedural” tasks can be taught.

However, what IS important and what cannot be taught, is that the candidate "get" social media, is already steeped in the culture, understands what you will want with little to no explanation and – just as importantly – has accountability in their DNA.

 Step 2: Find Your Ideal Candidate

Now that you understand what you should be looking for and how this individual will fit within your organization, where do you find these highly passionate and qualified social media gurus-in-waiting?

Here are some ways to find amazing talent in order of preference:

  • Internally: Your best candidate could be right under your nose either already working for you, or someone you know personally or professionally. Recognize your best internal candidates before looking outside your organization.
  • Evangelists: You know what the next best thing is to someone internal? Brand aficionados! The folks that comment and evangelize your products, always leave amazing comments on your blog or social media pages, or some of your best customers.

Sometimes finding a great social media manager is a matter of looking for, and reaching out to, your most passionate advocates – seriously! A great example is the Macalope.

The Macalope is a fictitious being that describes himself humorously as part man, part Mac, part antelope, and writes for Macworld as well as his own blog, while culling together a loyal following.

His humor, irreverence and sarcasm are contagious and pitch perfect for the target audience of Apple fanboys.

  • Word of Mouth/Recommendations/Contacts: Another way to find talent is to mine previous contacts of people that have impressed you in the past, solicit recommendations from colleagues you respect, and put initial feelers out to trusted individuals that can spread the word for your company.
  • Social Media: Use LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. to get the message out that you’re hiring. This is a great way to tap into your brand evangelists while also leveraging word of mouth.
  • Internships: There are always hungry, savvy people looking for internships – whether they are starting a new career, or college students looking for a summer gig or full-time internship that could become their next career. Some great sites and places to find interns are: craigslist.org, your local online college job boards, Internships.com and InternSushi.com

How to craft your social media manager position to attract the right candidate:

I want to mention that no matter what route you take, your position has to be congruent with your company’s expectations, goals, values, culture and vision.

It also has to attract the right person.

When you craft the description of the type of social media manager you’re looking for and their responsibilities – by the way, you better take at LEAST a good hour or two to do this – you also need to carefully convey the benefits to the candidate of considering your company for their next career stop.

This is critical.

If you craft a boring, staid or quickly-put-together traditional job posting, guess what you’ll attract?

Job seekers that won’t even read it and simply dump their resume in your lap.

Think about it this way:

Would you want to work for a company that seems dull or boring, and didn’t take the time to sell you on how awesome it is working with them on a daily basis?

Or perhaps how cool it is interacting with their loyal, passionate clients and customers, or their fantastic products and services?

Don’t think that quickly slapping together a job posting will bring hoards of amazing candidates to you – especially if you are a small company!

Sure Google, Facebook, Apple or other large companies can get away with that sort of thing and still attract high-end talent, but if you happen not to be a Fortune 1000 company, then you’ve got to sell the benefits of working for your organization to a hot, prospective social media rock star that doesn’t want to work for Google, Facebook or Apple!

(Larger companies can get away with a boring and corporate-speak job listing, but you can’t!)

 

Step 3: Pre-Screening Your Ideal Candidate

Now comes the “fun” part…

I say “fun” facetiously because no matter what, you’re likely going to get bombarded by a lot of pure “job” seekers and those that didn’t read the position description and are clearly neither qualified, nor appropriate for the position.

This is where a carefully implemented pre-screening process can save you countless time and resources, while delivering pre-qualified candidates that are hungry to be a part of your team.

There are 2 phases to the pre-screening process to help you weed out unqualified candidates – assuming you’ve already taken at least 1-2 hours to carefully craft an enticing and thorough social media manager description.

Phase 1: Start with your listing 

In your listing, you must do two things that will virtually eliminate 50-60% of all candidates right off the bat:

  • First, ask for a specific subject line when they apply: This is so simple and effective it’s incredible. I’ve used this tactic to weed out those that are just copying and pasting resumes and emailing them out to every listing.

What you do is ask for a specific subject line that cannot be guessed and is completely unrelated to the job opening.

One of my favorites?

I have asked candidates to put the word “Elephant” – and nothing else –in the subject of their email or else we wouldn’t even consider their application.

(Strategies like this make finding the perfect social media expert a lot easier!)

The moment you get any other subject line, press the "delete" button.

Think of it this way: Do you honestly want a social media “strategist” working for your company that didn’t take the time, and isn’t thorough enough, to at least fully READ your instructions before applying for the position?

Tip: If you use a job posting site that let’s applicants apply directly through the website, simply state in your description that an email must be sent in lieu of applying through the website. If you get applications through the website, it means they didn’t thoroughly read the instructions and you can delete their information.

Bonus Tip: Burry these instructions within your listing (preferably in the middle of a non-related paragraph of text), so it is not easily found by scanning the page!

  • Second, ask the candidate to answer 3 – 5 questions: This is another great way to weed out candidates right off the bat.

If they did happen to see your subject line requirements, another subset of candidates will drop off the hunt once they see there is actual work involved to even be considered for the position.

What types of questions do you ask? The type that let them stand out from the crowd and be expressive.

After all, you are hiring a SOCIAL media manger right?

Some examples that we’ve used:

  • In 100 words or less, tell me why you’re the social media manager we’re looking for? (Tip: Make sure you count the words! Highlight the text in Microsoft Word, click on “Tools” >> “Word Count”)
  • What 3 things are you most passionate about? Explain each.
  • Tell me about and show me something you worked on or created over the last 6 months that was difficult to accomplish that you are proud of.
  • Show me 3 social media campaigns you’ve worked on and explain what results you achieved for each – not the WORK you did, but RESULTS you achieved.
  • Assume that money is no object and you are financially independent. What does your typical day look like?
  • Explain which is most important to you: Getting it right or explaining it right? Why?
  • Give me an example of how you overcame adversity in your life.
  • Choose ONE company you respect. Explain to me why you respect them and then tell me 5 things they must do immediately to dramatically improve their social media presence.

As you can see, some of these questions are open-ended and a bit interpretive, but that’s the point.

You want to see the candidate’s thought process and how they react to strange or open-ended questions while also allowing you a chance to really get to know them on a deeper level as they explain some of their passions in life, what they value, and how they interact with the world around them.

This process will weed out those that aren’t really serious about joining your team, are to lazy to fill out the required information, or those that answered in such a way that you can immediately exclude them from future consideration.

Bonus Tip: Add one more layer to weed candidates out further by having them print, sign and scan/fax back a document to you with their signature asserting the following:

“I have read and understand the requirements for this position and certify that I meet all the requirements in the skills required section. Furthermore I agree to an in-person interview with (Company) if required before any decision is made, and will send my answers to the questions posed earlier in the position listing.”

Name _______________________    Date ____________________________

Phase 2: Next is a phone pre-screen and task list 

After the preliminary pre-screening requirements you’ve implemented, you’re likely now left with some very special people that you are interested in talking to that are skilled, passionate, detail-oriented and accountable.

Now let’s take that one step further with a preliminary phone screen and task list to make finding your ideal social media expert even easier.

Here’s what you do:

  • Set up a 30 – 60 minute phone screen with the candidate
  • Use this time to get to know them using their answers to your initial questions as a guide
  • Then ask very important details about their skill set, experience and the requirements of the position
  • Make sure you also tell them about your company, your culture and your expectations
  • If you like what you hear and the candidate seems to be a good fit for both the position (skills, passion, readiness) and your company (culture, fit, expectations), then have the candidate complete 3-5 tasks in 24 hours, for further consideration

These tasks should be a mix of challenging items that they are likely never to have done before, combined with some that they should already know how to do.

It isn't important if they complete the tasks with 100% accuracy.

Always remember that you can teach technical stuff that someone might not know, as well as your internal systems and procedures.

What IS important, however, is to see their thought process and their accountability in action.

Did they give up or keep trying? Did they admit if they couldn't figure something out? Did they find the information they needed to complete the task? Did they try their best? Was there heart, soul and polish in their work?

Finally, these tasks should also show the candidate’s ability to problem solve without being told how to do something – a very important skill to have in the rapidly changing world of social media!

Some possible tasks include:

  • Setting up a tab in Facebook to get people to take a specific action
  • Attracting 50 followers to a Twitter account within 24 hours
  • Coming up with a specific strategy for one of your company’s social media platforms to improve interaction
  • Finding and researching a specific topic that might interest your target market and distilling the information into 3 takeaways/posts they can share with your audience
  • Learning how to use a new piece of software, application or tool without showing them how, and asking for specific results – make sure they’ve never used it before!
  • Other tasks either related or completely unrelated to the position

(Tip: So as not to disturb a live website or social media account, create dummy accounts for these tasks to be completed across the networks you use.)

You must make it clear that all assigned tasks must be completed within 24 hours from when you hang up the phone with them, or 24 hours from when they received a follow-up email from you outlining the tasks.

If the candidate really didn’t want the position, isn’t willing to work hard to get it, or they could not handle the expected workload, they simply disappear and you’ll never hear from them again.

It’s better to find this out early rather than too late. In fact, if this does happen, you just saved your company from making the mistake of hiring someone that would have bailed on you when the going got tough.

On the other hand, the candidates that really want to join your team will drop everything to complete these tasks as best they can.

In the world of social media you sometimes need to accomplish tasks on the fly and nobody will be there to show you how to do them.

Therefore, it's important to hire someone that is autonomous and able to think for themselves.

It bears repeating that you aren’t looking for perfection with these tasks, but rather want to see the candidate’s thought process, problem solving skills and ability to learn something new without being taught how to do it.

Step 4: Interviewing Your Ideal Candidate

By this point you’ve successfully narrowed your search for the ideal social media manager to only the very best, brightest and hungriest candidates that see working for you as a great opportunity, not just a job.

Let’s finalize this process by interviewing your candidates in person and presenting them with a few more tasks to see what they’re made of.

There’s nothing like being on the spot and seeing how someone handles challenging tasks with potential coworkers or your potential boss breathing down your neck!

The in-person interview is used for two purposes: to make sure that the candidate is the right fit for your company in terms of personality, demeanor and culture, and that they know their stuff or at least are capable of learning what they don’t know quickly.

Tip: If your candidate works remotely, sometimes an in-person interview is not possible, or entirely necessary – especially for a social media position. Compensate by adding one more round of higher-level tasks and/or interviews to firmly lock down the right person.

Remember: Learning how to create a Google+ page, best practices for creating a Facebook tab, or the best times of the day to Tweet can be taught. What can’t are the intangibles of someone being able to interact with an audience on the fly, learn things quickly, be accountable and bring passion to whatever they do!

Here are some tasks for an in-person interview:

  • Ask the candidate to recite your unique selling proposition, company tagline, or something else very specific to your company
  • Ask the candidate for 5 ways they would improve your company’s social media presence and why
  • Have the candidate show you 5 websites and social media presences that they like and respect and explain why they like them
  • Show the candidate how to do a higher level task ONCE – how to send out a special campaign, or a specific technical procedure – then ask them to repeat the process
  • Ask the candidate to explain their philosophy on search engine optimization, social media and related topics
  • Ask the candidate to show 5 blogs that they follow and explain why the follow them
  • Have the candidate white board an entire social media marketing campaign in 5 minutes or less giving them your most important goal and outcome for the campaign

Super Bonus Tip: At the end of the day it’s all about results. So, have the candidate detail what they will accomplish for your company within the first 90 days of working for you. Not actions they will take, but RESULTS they will achieve! You can even give them a day or two to think about this, brainstorm and come up with what will be essentially, their hiring contract with you.

Step 5: Making The Hire

This final step is almost anticlimactic.

After the process you just implemented and the steps you set up to ensure you attracted the right person for your organization with the perfect skill set, your decision to hire them is the easy part.

By now you know exactly whom you want – a rock star social media manager will emerge – and all you have to do is pull the trigger.

Tip: Here’s a range of social media salaries and job titles from Onward Search to help you out.

Social media manager is the most common (and searched for) description for what you probably need, but other titles exist like “social media specialist”. You are free to decide which nomenclature fits what you are looking for and then create a position description and decide on compensation accordingly.

(See a comprehensive list of social media jobs, titles and average salaries by market from Onward Search)

Bonus Tip: Make sure you always hire on a trial basis – using the 90-day plan your candidate created for you as a framework for whether they are delivering results or not – because no matter how thorough a pre-screening and interview process is, someone might still turn out to not be the right fit for the position.

Quick Warning: If you’re thinking for one second that this process is too laborious or difficult for your company, then by all means feel free to do it your way and see how much time, money and rework it’s going to cost your organization when you have to find, hire and train someone new for the position every couple of months!

Bottom Line:

Finding and hiring an amazing social media manager isn’t as difficult as it sounds if you’ve got a sound, repeatable strategy in place to ensure that you only attract the right candidates.

By utilizing this process you will:

  • Take a top down view and deeply understand what it takes for a social media manager to be successful
  • Crystalize your company’s needs for the position as well as your core values, culture and value proposition
  • Implement multiple layers of pre-screening to attract the very best talent

By using this system you will now ensure a much higher accuracy in finding the absolute best social media managers looking for their opportunity to shine.

Always remember that there are inherent traits that you should look for and others that can be taught.

Knowing the difference is the key to locking up an amazing, talented, passionate and devoted person who will live and breathe your company’s social media presence.

If you feel I missed something I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Other valuable resources on this topic:

 ...Read More >>

Yes, Solopreneurs Can Benefit From Digital Marketing Agencies

by Sara Lippert @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

Written by intern Rhiannon Gilbert Solopreneurs have been around for a long time, but now they’re really on the rise thanks to the internet. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, you should know that there is a big difference in solopreneurs and entrepreneurs working alone. Entrepreneurs start out alone, but their goal in the long […]

The post Yes, Solopreneurs Can Benefit From Digital Marketing Agencies appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

The Benefits of Hiring A Web Marketing Consultant | Adventure Web Interactive

The Benefits of Hiring A Web Marketing Consultant | Adventure Web Interactive


Adventure Web Interactive

Is your business new to Internet marketing? Do you need a professional business web design? Do you need to setup social media accounts? If you answered yes

10 Beautiful Landing Page Designs

by David Edwards @ The Deep End Design

I spend a lot of time designing things like landing pages and user interfaces, and so I come across lots of different homepage and landing page designs. There’s been a steady trend over the last few years of richer, more elegant and beautiful landing pages, particularly amongst startups and for web apps. I wanted to […]

The post 10 Beautiful Landing Page Designs appeared first on The Deep End Design.

China Accused Of Planning To Take Down The Internet?

by @ Cre8tive Tomorrow

Why Pay-Per-Click Is Great For Seasonal Businesses – Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

If you are reading this blog you either already know about the different types of internet marketing on Google and the other search engines and you are looking to learn more about it (if so, I hope you enjoy!) or possibly you just troll and argue blogs all day (yes those people exist too), or…..  […]

The post Why Pay-Per-Click Is Great For Seasonal Businesses – Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

What Happened To Homepage Content With Today's Web Designs?

by @ Search Engine Optimization

SEO Company San Diego -Internet Marketing, Search Optimization

SEO Company San Diego -Internet Marketing, Search Optimization


39 Celsius Web Marketing Consulting

SEO company in San Diego, 39 Celsius Web Marketing Consulting. Profit driven search engine placement. Call our web marketing firm today! 858-324-4603

Google’s Latest Algorithm Update: How to Recover After Fred

by Jon Clark @ Jon Lee Clark

In the beginning of March 2017, reports of a new Google algorithm update hit the internet. Two months later, these reports have still not been officially confirmed by Google. However, the effects of the so-called ‘Fred’ update are definitely being … Continue reading

The post Google’s Latest Algorithm Update: How to Recover After Fred appeared first on Jon Lee Clark.

Sympathy For The Web Site User

by @ All Forums

I know the majority of the long time members here are well aware of our legacy of including usability and user experience in marketing and development work, so I wondered if you have noticed the sudden rise in interest for UX by companies that have websites and digital marketing strategies?

 

When I tell someone who doesn't know me that I test websites for a living, I say something like, "I'm the person who finds out why it isn't working" and then they either hug me or tell me their stories about all the bad user experiences they have. When I tell them I help make web pages work for special needs users, the response is always surprise and appreciation, and then they realize they hadn't really considered that not everyone can use a computer device the same way they do.  I'm always educating clients on that too.

 

Few user interface designers and most developers don't worry too much about empathy for the user. That's been my job for a long time. However, there is growing interest in journey mapping and for some companies, a return to user personas.  I still don't see user testing performed routinely and I think its because of the expense of setting it up and having a trained person there to do it or set up remote user testing.  It's its own set of skills, from the way users are observed to the tasks they are given.  There's definitely a gap in understanding how people use our websites, but the light is turned on. I see more companies wanting to put human faces on their data.

 

Sometimes I worry there is nothing new to imagine, build, or create.  I never seem to run out of ideas but lack the time, talent, skills and resources to do much with what's in my head. I can see, however, there's lots of room to keep introducing new mobile apps and ones that refine and improve on the choices that are already out there.  While traveling, my husband and I had some real life experiences that had me researching and gathering business requirements for a new app during the 6 hour drive back home from where we were over the weekend.  It was fascinating for me to see an unmet user need.

 

Connecting with users is something that we don't have fully figured out and it occurred to me that this is because in real life, we don't understand how to connect with each other, so expecting to do it with our devices, websites and apps is difficult. I have to say that this is exciting to me.

 

I'm not sure where all this fits in with machine learning yet, and I wonder how we will connect our human-ness with machine-ness.

 

Do you think we will?  

How Your Local Business Can Benefit From the Pokemon Go Craze

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Unless you’ve been quarantined for the past week, you’ve likely been bombarded with articles and news stories about the latest app craze known as “Pokémon Go.” As a staunch non-gamer, I was getting annoyed at the ever-mounting coverage it was getting in the media — that is, until I found out about the marketing implications […]

The post How Your Local Business Can Benefit From the Pokemon Go Craze appeared first on The Deep End Design.

10 Reasons Why B2B Companies Must Invest in PPC Campaigns

by Peggy Owen @

There are numerous reasons why B2B companies should consider implementing a pay-per-click marketing program. In many cases, however, business-to-business companies struggle to understand how to incorporate a B2B industry PPC strategy, and are therefore reluctant to allocate a budget toward a PPC campaign. Below are just a few reasons to consider incorporating PPC as part […]

The post 10 Reasons Why B2B Companies Must Invest in PPC Campaigns appeared first on .

An Interview with our New Web Designer, a New Podcasts and the Power of Pursuing Your Passion. (and Unicorns)

by ian @ good karma

Here is a quick interview I did with our new lead web designer. We talk about pursuing your passion, setting big goals, mythical animals (and why they matter) and why making lists is a critical piece of the puzzle for any creative professional If you like this sort of behind the scenes peek at our […]

The post An Interview with our New Web Designer, a New Podcasts and the Power of Pursuing Your Passion. (and Unicorns) appeared first on good karma.

Tips to Leverage True Power of LinkedIn for B2B Industrial Companies

by Peggy Owen @

Whether you have an existing website or are launching a new website, your company can take advantage of a number of benefits by leveraging the power of LinkedIn. Widely regarded as the preferred social media network of choice for businesses of all types, LinkedIn offers a variety of methods for building your brand, as well […]

The post Tips to Leverage True Power of LinkedIn for B2B Industrial Companies appeared first on .

Fast Five: Tips for Social Media Milwaukee Success

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

You have a website, a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a LinkedIn profile and just signed up for Pinterest. The problem:
Nothing is happening.
When building out an integrated web marketing plan, there are key questions that help in creating a strategic plan, rather than a social media hodgepodge of busyness. Here’s Autumn’s simplified approach to real-time social media success.
The Fast Five: Key Questions for Successful Social
What am I selling?Before you can begin engaging customers through interactive social ...

Maximus Internet Marketing Co. – Web Webnesdays! All Welcome

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Hello All, I want to make an announcement that I will be making myself available every Wednesday from 9:30am to 11:30am at: 24 Veterans Sq. – Media, PA 19063 This will be a time for anyone to come in and ask any questions about their website, SEO, Pay Per Click, Social Media, etc… I will give […]

The post Maximus Internet Marketing Co. – Web Webnesdays! All Welcome appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

Small Business Trends Presents: Ronan Galvin of Kickstagram: Marketing Automation Led to 282% Increase in Revenue in Eight M

by Earl Netwal @ Minneapolis Internet Marketing Consultant

from Small Business Trends https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SvfaxgAn8M via IFTTT The post Small Business Trends Presents: Ronan Galvin of Kickstagram: Marketing Automation Led to 282% Increase in Revenue in Eight M appeared first on RepPilot. from RepPilot http://reppilot.com/info/small-business-trends-presents-ronan-galvin-of-kickstagram-marketing-automation-led-to-282-increase-in-revenue-in-eight-m/ via RepPilot

SEO Consultant/Agency Pricing, Structure, & Services (US & Canada Survey Results)

by rand @ Rand's Blog

In late November/early December of 2015, I ran a survey of consultants and agencies asking deep questions about their structure, fees, employees, projects, and more. Thanks to responses from over 400 folks around the world, I’m able to share what I hope will be some of the most useful data from that project. Survey takers […]

The post SEO Consultant/Agency Pricing, Structure, & Services (US & Canada Survey Results) appeared first on Rand's Blog.

Need Help On Pushing My Website Higher In Google

by @ Online Marketing and Promotion

Dragon Internet Marketing, LLC launches a NEW – REDESIGNED website in collaboration with Visual Lure!

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

Please visit our NEW website @ www.dragoninternetmarketing.com TODAY!

The post Dragon Internet Marketing, LLC launches a NEW – REDESIGNED website in collaboration with Visual Lure! appeared first on Dragon Internet Marketing.

Need Help On Charity Website In Ie 6 And Ie7

by @ Cross-Browser Device Assessment Panel

Hey Google: You’re Really Starting To Piss Me Off!

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

Hey Google, you’re really starting to piss me off!

And I’m not just talking as an Internet marketer, but also as a consumer.

Most Internet marketers and the folks that use your products and services are too scared, or fear reprisal, to say anything – so somebody needed to call you out on all the crap you’ve been pulling lately.

I decided to take on that challenge and write this open letter to help you learn from your mistakes and change your ways.

After all, you’re only biting the hand that feeds you.

Let’s get right to it.

Here are just some of the things that are chapping my ass:

Panda:

Never has an animal this cute and cuddly stricken such fear into the hearts and minds of legitimate website owners and operators.

We all know the intent of the update(s), why it needed to be done, and that one day the Internet will be a better place because of it.

All that being said, you blew it on this one.

Sure, you gave us some pretty darn useful guidelines as to what constitutes “high quality” websites (thanks for that by the way), but you never told us what to do if we already had a high quality website – by your own standards no less – that received a major smackdown.

What are we supposed to do if our content is already of the highest caliber, but our rankings, traffic and businesses got slaughtered as a result of Mr. Panda?

On top of that, what the hell are we supposed to think when you go against your own quality guidelines and rank a spammy/smutty/scraper website above a REAL, useful website?

I think Rick Santorum might also have a personal bone to pick with you…

As a matter of fact, you’re even asking for OUR help to fix your problem!

I guess you aren’t above acknowledging you didn’t get this right either, so let’s keep this simple.

How 'bout a nice handy set of instructions on how to systematically fix Panda ranking problems instead of some vague, obtuse and somewhat condescending criteria that can be very subjective depending on whom you ask?

Fair enough?

(Not Provided):

Really Google? You’re withholding the very keyword data from me that my customers and their customers are using to search for and find our products and services – for the benefit of consumer protection?

Really…?

So let me get this straight:

If a potential customer is logged into any Google application (Gmail, Analytics, FeedBurner, Google+, etc.), their browsing is anonymous and we CAN’T see what search terms they are using to find our websites using YOUR analytics software.

However, if a potential customer is not logged in (which you have to go out of your way to do), we CAN see what search terms they are using to find and click through to our websites.

Ok, I can understand that, I’m all for consumer protection and all.

Except for one small problem: We can still see that same referral data (whether the potential customer is logged in or not) from our PAID AdWords accounts!

So which is it: Are you protecting consumers while hurting us as advertisers, or are you helping us as advertisers while hurting consumers?

Or is it merely that so long as we pay you, then you’re perfectly willing to violate your own defined standards for “consumer protection”?

Either way, I just want to say thanks.

Thanks for withholding up to 20% of keyword data - and in some cases much more – that could help me actually make the web a better place.

Google+:

This is one of my favorites.

Hey we all wish we were as big as Facebook and had over 800 million users spending hours on our websites each and every month.

So as a result of user envy you’ve decided that – in our best interest of course – you’re going to force everyone who cares about their Internet marketing, rankings and social media presence to open up a Google+ account, endorse it on our websites, and make others use it too, so that you can grow your own user base and make a run at Facebook, Twitter, et al.?

Nice.

That should go over well with Mom and Dad – after all, they just opened their Facebook accounts and have been looking for a way to “Circle” little Jonny so he doesn’t see all their private chatter about him.

That’s also really going to go over well with all my clients who have already spent thousands of dollars on their social media presences only to be told – by me no less – that if they don’t get on this Google+ thing their rankings and SEO might suffer because – in your infinite wisdom – you are now promoting Google+ results over other organic and paid results.

Yet another redundant and force fed social network we have to spend time setting up and optimizing? Really?

Oh, and don’t get me started on that whole Search Plus Your World (SPYW) crap where I now have to filter my own search results!

And I’m not the only one pissed off about this whole thing either.

Seems like you’ve once again attracted privacy and antitrust concerns.

Hey it’s better to ask for forgiveness right?

Pharmacy Ads:

Thanks for helping a convicted con artist set up illegal pharmaceutical and supplement ads!

Much appreciated.

Hey, at least his time was well spent helping you and prosecutors find the cracks in your system, which did get you nailed for doing this across the board to the tune of $500 million.

I know we Americans really like our “pharmaceuticals” and we’ll go to great lengths to get them, but isn’t your mantra “Don’t Be Evil”?

Just sayin’…

“Updated” Privacy Policy:

Listen, I really appreciate you for updating your stalker privacy policy and making it just one document.

I mean, before there were just too many disparate documents across multiple platforms to wade through.

But now…

Heck, I might even pour myself a cold one, maximize my computer screen and actually sit through this baby, ‘cause I know you would never make the same mistake that you did with that whole Google Buzz fiasco – Right?

Fortunately, there are others who have our back, and tell us that all this new policy does is reinforce the old one(s) – you know, where you told us in not-so-uncertain terms that we can’t opt out if we want to actually use Gmail, Google Analytics or other cool stuff that might prove useful every once in awhile.

I know some are pretty upset about this policy as well as your latest breach overriding privacy controls for iPhone and Mac users – but not me.

I’m stoked that I don’t have to read over 60 different documents now.

And, from watching your nifty little video (below), I’ve come to really respect and admire these changes, because now you will be able to provide me with a “better, more intuitive experience” as you track my search history.

Thanks for thinking of me.

Overall Hypocritical & Bullying Behavior:

Geez, I feel like this list could go on forever.

But, since I know you you’ve got plenty more disruptive behavior to get to, I’ll just focus on some of the latest hits of your hypocritical and bullying ways:

  •  Paid Links: It’s wrong to buy links – Right?

In fact, if I do it, you’ve made it very clear that I’ll get spanked on my backside.

Great, got it.

So why the hell are you purchasing links for Google Chrome?

  •  Page Layout Penalty: According to your new guidelines on page layouts, websites with too many ads on them, specifically “above the fold” – those at the top of a webpage – will be penalized.

Ok, I can see that.

Nobody likes clicking on a site expecting content and then having to wade through gobs of advertising.

I think we’re in agreement on this one.

Except for one small problem: Your entire search engine is TOP HEAVY with ads!                                                  

(Image taken by Daniel Weadley)

And to top it all off, you recommend websites squash the crap out of their own content by surrounding it on all sides with ads from your advertising network.

From your own guidelines:

“All other things being equal, ads located above the fold tend to perform better than those below the fold. Ads placed near rich content and navigational aids usually do well because users are focused on those areas of a page.”

Umm…yeahhh…

  •  Google Affiliate Network: I just caught wind of this one via a great article.

Essentially you don’t allow the promotion of “weapons related merchandise” on your affiliate network.

Sounds fair, after all you don’t want to actively promote violence and stuff.

But what about hunting or fishing blogs?

How is a knife used for cleaning and gutting a fish different from the one you use in your kitchen to chop up tonight’s meal?

In fact, your own detailed weapons policy prohibits promoting guns, ammunition and knives "such as butterfly knives, switchblades (and) disguised knives," but specifically allows promoting kitchen knives and swords!

Swords? Say what?

  •  Censored Results: Remember that whole “Don’t Be Evil” thing?

Well, it looks like you caved in to a communist government by specifically censoring search results for users in China.

I don’t have to tell you how this looks, do I?

Thankfully you’ve already reversed course on this.

  •  Being a Bully: You’ve been accused of many things Google, and being a bully is high on that list.

I could go on for days about the things you’ve done to others, but for me personally, I’m not happy with:

--> Slowing down or throttling applications that frequently use your search results for their software, API or tools.

Once again, you’re in effect biting the hand that feeds you.

Our applications and searches power an entire industry that is bringing you lots of money – billions, in fact.

So stop messing with us.

--> Not showing links or anchor text to a page for “competitive reasons.”

You claim that showing this data will help fight spam, but come on – you know that every other app/program for SEO does this already, so what’s the difference?

Your data could help alleviate a lot of confusion and bring some sort of standard to the industry as we attempt to help our clients.

Again, you’re just biting the hand that feeds you – namely SEO’s and Internet marketers trying to help your users find great websites and content.

I could go on, but I don’t have all day.

In fact a client just left me a message asking why they are being outranked on Google “by someone with this Google+ thing”…sigh…

In Conclusion:

Don’t forget Google, that when you were in your infancy, it was companies like mine that brought you to prominence – and we keep you there to this day.

You’re riding on the backs of millions of businesses and users that advertise on your networks, use your products and spend countless hours with you every single day.

When you first started out, you were a speck on the horizon – an upstart with a funny name.

If you keep this disruptive, manipulative and oppressive shit up, we’ll have no choice but to move on, leave you behind and find – or create – something else

A useful entity that appreciates us, is transparent and honest, eats their own cooking and actually understands that we have a choice.

And while you’re really starting to piss me off, I’m making this effort to reach out to you in the hopes that you will see the light, get off your high horse and do right by the community that brought you to where you are now.

One can only hope that “Don’t Be Evil” also extends to being wise enough to listen to those you serve. ...Read More >>

The Power of Digital: Winning the Zero Moment of Truth, ZMOT (Part 2)

by Nathan Misirian @ Milwaukee web marketing consultant – Autumn Consulting

The rules of marketing have changed. In Part 1 of our Digital Power series, we talked about the way that marketing has evolved. From typewriters to tablets, we are moving into the digital space with full force, every year bringing about more updates and trends. Before you wonder if your business can keep pace, know this:
Digital advances can help you meet prospects, engage customers and grow your business. Exponentially.
Fact: According to Google research customers will make 11 points ...

WSI MarketBuilders Internet Marketing Daily News Feed 07/06/2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

What Is The Role Of Google Webmaster Tool In Seo?

by @ Search Engine Optimization

On-Page SEO Primer–Part 2

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

A Look at On-Page Search Engine Optimization and What It Means for Your Business Website Analysis Conducting a thorough analysis of your website and its search-engine friendly features includes taking a look at the code imbedded in your pages. Since …

Core SEO Concepts That Have Stayed Relevant

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Core SEO Concepts That Have Stayed Relevant Hello all, thank you for stopping by.  Let’s face it the world of SEO is ever changing, but there are some core factors that have been a relevant part of SEO for a long time.  I use the world “RELEVANT” almost as a pun in this situation because […]

The post Core SEO Concepts That Have Stayed Relevant appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

5 Defense Strategies Against High Bounce Rates

by Ayrald Hubert @ The Deep End Design

It’s one thing to bring people to your website but let’s be honest — the true test is how long they actually stick around. Whether the purpose of your site is to generate leads, make sales or even to inform your audience, it’s not doing its job if people leave too soon. Knowing this, most […]

The post 5 Defense Strategies Against High Bounce Rates appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Digital Marketing Account Manager/Strategist

by Robert Mathew @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Online Marketing Account Manager – (SEM, PPC, SEO: Project Management) Young, vibrant and open environment Innovative online marketing company Fanatical […]

The post Digital Marketing Account Manager/Strategist appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Completely Free Photographic Sources & Creatives

by @ Graphics & Multimedia Design

Art vs. Graphic Design: The Debate Rages On

by Elise Leveque @ The Deep End Design

The debate as to whether design (or graphic design) can truly be classified as art in the literal sense has raged on for years.  It’s a complex and rather convoluted argument to have, as both designers and artists create their own visual interpretations and compositions with the skills and knowledge set they have. Their reasons […]

The post Art vs. Graphic Design: The Debate Rages On appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Google Analytics Bad Referrals – Part I

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

Updated 7/1/15. Starting in mid-2014, a few disreputable marketing companies (mostly outside the U.S.) began a practice of sending visitors to websites they didn’t ask to go to (including probably yours). Over the past year this has become a very big … Continue reading

Quick tips on web site design

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Changing website design is a lot dependent on the different devices which are visiting websites every day. Some devices have a better screen resolution and some have different touch-screen interface. Device diversity has changed the way a website consultant creates a web site design. Now, he has to be more diverse in his work and […]

The post Quick tips on web site design appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

How Delta Airlines Used Twitter To Save My Trip

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

(Read Time: 5 Minutes)

Delta Airlines and Twitter just saved my trip -- yeah, I'm as shocked as you are!

I had read about how large Fortune 500 companies were using Twitter for customer service, outreach and for more than just to "engage" -- which I previously wrote was a bad idea in and of itself.

But what I hadn't yet experienced is the power of social media -- specifically Twitter -- when I needed it the most.

Here's a lesson in customer service, social media, and how your company can use this powerful medium to actually get real work done and increase profits, not just waste time.

First the bad news:

  • My flight had been canceled with no notice from the airline -- I was lucky to check-in online the day before and see a nice red CANCELLED next to the flight information.
  • As a result of Hurricane Irene, the wait time for Delta's 800 number was 1 - 1.5 hours
  • I tried changing the itinerary online, but was incurring change fees of up to $1,000 for a flight THEY cancelled -- just on principle alone I was not going to accept that.
  • I was in a foreign country (OK, Canada, but still...) where my mobile phone was only good for Wi-Fi at Starbucks...dicey at best.

So, with no recourse, I called the toll free number and waited on hold with the phone on speaker and bided my time...

But then I tried something else: The hold message said to try Twitter, specifically their @DeltaAssist account.

I'd often heard about folks that were stranded in airports or faced with long hold times getting their reservations changed easily on Twitter, so I decided to give it a shot.

19 "Tweets" and 15 minutes later, I saw the power of this medium of only 140 characters to change the world as we know it -- or at least offer frustrated travelers another form of reaching their destination.

Here's the exact conversation:
confirmation # GPVKT7 -- need help, flight was cancelled for no reason, just found out as I got lucky to log in. Tried changing times online
but, it wants to charge me huge change fees for a flight that I did not cancel. Please help.
So you'd like to change to a 2:52p flight on the 29th now? ^WG
 no, ideally I would like to still depart tomorrow around the same time, even if rerouted through a different city.
 would like to depart Toronto, arrive in SJC around the same time
 if you need me to fly from Toronto to another city and connect on to SJC that's fine. It does not have to go through Minn.
 ^WG: wanted to make sure you got my last messages re: confirmation # GPVKT7
 For the 28th, I only have morning flights that make two stops. Ex: leave @ 9:45a, change in DTW & SLC, get into SJC @ 4:10p.^WG
If I chose those will there be any change fees?
 No, there wouldn't be any change fees. ^WG
 I might be ok with something leaving in the morning and changing over a couple of times. I want to leave Tor as late as possible.
with as few stops/changeovers as possible.
 ^ WG: any options for later times? re: conf. # GPVKT7
The 9:45a on the 28th is the latest I have. ^WG
 ^ WG: Ok, It departs Toronto @9:45 AM, 2 changeovers: DTS and then SLC? Arrive SJC from SLC @ 4:10?
That's correct. ^WG
 ^WG: OK, please proceed with the change. What do you need from me? Please confirm via email.
I got all I need, thanks. The ticket's reissued & the email's sent. ^WG
 ^WG: Thank you for your help, It was really appreciated

Now the good news:

  • This was all done while I was still on hold
  • The process was pretty smooth, aside from some lag time while the representative was "talking" with other people
  • I flew home without a hitch - and had mostly forgiven the previous cancellation and attempt to charge me exorbitant change fees

The Ultimate Power of Social Media

This got me seriously thinking about the power of the Internet, and social media in particular.

As if I didn't already realize how important it was not only to my own company, but for our clients as well.

But it was almost like a second awakening.

Have we been vastly underutilizing this medium as a means to offer customers a higher level of support, service and peace of mind?

While devoting a full time staff to a Twitter account might not be right for your company, having some form of social media IS an absolute must!

If you offer real-time services or services that change nebulously, or often require some form of customer service, then giving customers a way to contact you through social media rather than clogging up your phone lines or waiting a full day for an email reply can be a powerful and effective way to cut costs while at the same time serving customers at a much higher level.

The Bottom Line:

In today's world, we might not always "get" Twitter, Facebook and all that "social media stuff", but as time passes, and as a leader of your organization responsible for Internet marketing and customer retention and outreach, you simply cannot ignore it any longer.

This was just one very personal example of social media being used by one of the largest airlines in the world to better serve their customers.

There are countless other companies out there doing the same thing -- such as Dell blowing out obsolete inventory through Twitter -- that are closing the gap and probably surpassing your organization with this additional mode of customer service within your industry.

If you haven't already, it's time to look at the powerful ways social media can become a REAL business tool for your company and not something a teenager does just for kicks. ...Read More >>

Google Penguin 4.0, Google My Business – Episode 267

Google Penguin 4.0, Google My Business – Episode 267

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

No Changes Needed in Tactics Due to Google Penguin 4.0, plus Google’s Gary Illyes said on my public Facebook post that the new Penguin algorithm “managed to devalue spam instead of demoting. Also, Ross and John discuss a Google AMP Bug, Google My Business API and answer listener questions. This Sept 29 SEO 101 podcast […]

The post Google Penguin 4.0, Google My Business – Episode 267 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

8 Low-Cost Small Business Digital Marketing Tactics – FREE DOWNLOAD

by Earl Netwal @ Minneapolis Internet Marketing Consultant

Do you feel like you are spending a lot of time and money on your marketing and not getting results? Maybe you could use some low-cost small business digital marketing tactics?  Could be you just don’t know where to start, much less how to level up. Digital marketing can seem complicated when technology changes so […]

Hiring an SEO Consultant versus an Online Marketing Firm

by Peggy Owen @ Internet Marketing Consultancy

Do you understand the difference between hiring an Internet marketing consultant and an online marketing firm? Unfortunately, many people assume that all online marketing firms are the same — this is actually not the case. Understanding what you should expect from an online marketing consulting firm versus an online marketing company can help you make […]

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Should You Publish Your Content On LinkedIn?

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

The LinkedIn publishing platform was originally reserved for invited “Influencers” – people like Richard Branson, T. Boone Pickens, and Bill Gates. LinkedIn members could then choose to “follow” the thought leaders that interested them. However, in 2014, LinkedIn opened up the Publishing Platform to all members, giving each of us the opportunity to become thought […]

The post Should You Publish Your Content On LinkedIn? appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Top Websites Moving to HTTPS Secure Domain

by Orthopreneur Internet Marketing @ Orthopreneur Internet Marketing Solutions

2016 will go down as the year of the secure domain. OK, maybe not. But the last 12 months have shown a major uptick in the number of websites opting for secure domains (HTTPS) over the standard HTTP configuration. In January of 2016, the top Google search results tracked by Moz were about 25% HTTPS. Read More

Social Media & Your Business

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

Whatever your reason for avoiding social media may be, you need to think seriously about the opportunities that you are missing for connecting with current and potential customers that will drive the growth of your business.

The post Social Media & Your Business appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

5 Tips When Hiring a Los Angeles SEO Company

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

A Los Angeles SEO company can help you build a more compelling website and get more exposure online. But to get the best value for the money you spend on SEO you will want to work with an affordable SEO company that is up to the task. Here are some tips that will help you […]

The post 5 Tips When Hiring a Los Angeles SEO Company appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Cyber Sunday

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

  As the webmaster and social media coordinator for my church I organized “Cyber Sunday” earlier this month. We checked in on Facebook, toured the new website, took selfies, conducted a live poll during the sermon, used online giving during the offering and introduced bible apps. I was nervous that not many people would participate […]

It is heating up out there – For business that is…

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Summer is officially upon us, and that can mean a lot of things for some people: Kids are out of school and finding things to do (Good & Bad 😉 ) You are heading to the shore to visit or your shore house that your own You are heading on vacation somewhere You are heading […]

The post It is heating up out there – For business that is… appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

The Way Forward Is Getting Crowded

by @ All Forums

Over the years I've shared bits of what I've been doing and where I've been heading; the one thing I rarely touched on was the increasing amount of hardware required. It really has gotten quite, ummm, extensive. And expensive. Even over 3G (my current default benchmark) pages load bang, bang, fast and multimedia streams quick and smooth. While in the background bots are shunted aside and humans get variously granular contextually personalised content. It works well.

The problem is that others are catching up. For a decade there were only a few of us playing off in a corner quietly. Then a half decade of several new kids figuring out bits and pieces and, OMG!, writing about them in mass media for all to see (and largely ignore). But now, enterprise sites are catching on and catching up. And they have the resources to do in a day what took me a year or three. Yes, much of the webdev world is fixated on Google and FaceBook and Apple, but there is a web revolution happening aside from them. They are not excluded, often they are driving development of each latest 'ball' but it's others that are picking it up and running with it.

It is fascinating to see what my competitors (not niche, rather in what might be) are turning out. And where that points their development direction. Where I've been heading, instinctively at first and, for the past 7-years deliberately (as I said explicitly here in 2010), is to sites where one is not only told a story but shown the story, where one can wade as shallowly or dive as deep as desired as often as one wants; where, coming back again the experience is both as expected and new; and where the story is your story as well as mine (the site's) and on that commonality I pick your pocket and you smile.

Hubspot Alternatives – The Deep Dive

by jtroia @ Internet Marketing Consultants | Video Marketing | Greystack Digital

Recently I broached the subject of piecing together Lower Cost Hubspot Alternatives.  I was curious about what it would take to replace Hubspot’s centralized marketing software by combining some best-of-breed digital marketing tools that excel at performing a smaller subset of the complete Hubspot feature set. For example, Hubspot’s marketing platform offers an integrated platform […]

What To Look For In A Graphic Designer

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Did you ever think about hiring a graphic designer … but didn’t know what qualities to look for? This was originally written for people wanting to be a graphic designer but is helpful for those looking to hire one as well, by knowing what questions to ask.) Must Have Graphic Design Skills for 2017 HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language, in short, computer code to...

The post What To Look For In A Graphic Designer appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

The Benefits of a Fixed Header Bar

by Matthew Hall @ The Deep End Design

In recent years fixed header bars have been one of the most popular trends in the world of web design. By using simple CSS coding, web designers can staple header bars to the top of the screen so that users never lose sight of them when they scroll down a web page. This is particularly […]

The post The Benefits of a Fixed Header Bar appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Pay-Per-Click Vs. SEO. What is better for your business?

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Pay-Per-Click Vs. SEO.  What is better for your business? There are two main ways to advertise your website on Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO VS. PPC The questions always comes up when speaking with various different types of business owners and companies.  It is a very valid questions. […]

The post Pay-Per-Click Vs. SEO. What is better for your business? appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

How to Optimize Your Portfolio Website for Search

by Micah Abraham @ The Deep End Design

Designers are a rare breed. They’re artists, they’re businesspeople, and they’re developers/thinkers. They have to work tirelessly to craft their skills while simultaneously growing a business and marketing their services to others. Since most designers started because of their love for the art form, the business/marketing side tends to be a bit harder to develop. […]

The post How to Optimize Your Portfolio Website for Search appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Infographic: How to Protect Your WordPress Website

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Having just gone through this very site being hacked into, I know firsthand the horrors of dealing with such an attack. While there were very few visible indications that it was broken into, search engines could definitely tell, and alerted would-be browsers to the fact that my site was in the words of Google, “compromised.” […]

The post Infographic: How to Protect Your WordPress Website appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Twitter Hacks Every Marketer Should Know

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Twitter can be an essential element of a powerful internet marketing plan, but it is also one area where marketers seem to struggle most. Successfully maintaining an active Twitter account is a challenge, but given that there are around 1 billion monthly visits to websites by...

Content Marketing Strategy for Industrial Manufacturers and Distributors

by Peggy Owen @

For most industrial manufacturers and distributors, it can be difficult to rise above the competition. One of the reasons this can be so challenging for distributors is that their competition typically has the same type of inventory. As a result, industrial B2B website content tends to be quite similar, which can make it difficult to […]

The post Content Marketing Strategy for Industrial Manufacturers and Distributors appeared first on .

The 3 Relationship Principles of Long-Term Customer Acquisition

by Jon Clark @ Jon Lee Clark

The mistake many business owners make when trying to build their customer base is that they believe in the fallacy of one-size-fits-all. So they trot out the same marketing irrespective of their target audience, and the resulting lack of success … Continue reading

The post The 3 Relationship Principles of Long-Term Customer Acquisition appeared first on Jon Lee Clark.

How Are You Not Using Growth Driven Design?

by jtroia @ Internet Marketing Consultants | Video Marketing | Greystack Digital

Hello Mr. Prospect, this post is directed towards you.  You’re thinking about doing a website redesign huh?  That’s really great, your site is getting a little long in the tooth.  That image slider was super cool… 36 months ago. A Very Common Mis-Step Here’s a common mis-step I see from companies like yours time and […]

Is your website getting the Google mobile-friendly boost?

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

Take this simple test. In April of this year Google changed its search algorithm to give mobile-friendly sites a boost in search rankings. This means that websites that are easy for a user to view and navigate on a mobile device will be easier to find on Google’s search engine. If your website is not mobile-friendly, […]

What Are Recommendations For Professional Staff Photos Used For Websites?

by @ Graphics & Multimedia Design

Uncapping the Power of Social Media in B2B Marketing

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting


Having a strong presence on social media can be critical to the brand of your company. At Autumn Consulting we use social media marketing to connect with your audience in a multitude of positive ways.
 
 
1.It allows you to connect with your current audience and/or clients instantly.
By regularly updating your prospects on all the internal and external happenings of your company, prospects will start to view your company as one of the “alphas” in the web ...

The Three Most Common and Costly Mistakes in Online Marketing

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

Having recently celebrated our company’s 13th anniversary, we can say that we have helped hundreds of clients and improved thousands of online marketing situations in dire need of attention. Over those years, we have found that the biggest mistakes that companies make with their online marketing fall into three main categories, and they are not […]

The post The Three Most Common and Costly Mistakes in Online Marketing appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

10 Ways to Get More Instagram Followers

by Nabeena Mali @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

We are beyond the point where we can deny the immense influence of Instagram. Though people originally believed that Instagram was mostly for individual accounts, we’ve come to learn the marketing opportunities it holds for businesses and companies. Using the platform for your business can boost growth, awareness, engagement, and interaction with your target audience,…

The post 10 Ways to Get More Instagram Followers appeared first on Return On Now.

Google Disavow Tool: Is It Still Useful for Off-Page #SEO?

by Tommy Landry @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

Anyone who understands Google’s stance on off-page SEO should be familiar with the Google Disavow Tool. The Disavow Tool was originally offered to help webmasters and SEO consultants provide feedback directly to Google about link cleanup efforts. Why were we all cleaning up our links you ask? Surely you’ve heard of Google Penguin. If you…

The post Google Disavow Tool: Is It Still Useful for Off-Page #SEO? appeared first on Return On Now.

Best Digital Marketing Strategies for Startups

by Maciej Fita @

  Digital marketing is a no brainer must-have in today’s business world. Just as our world has integrated into everything digital, it is not a surprise to see digital marketing evolve to how we use it today. While traditional marketing is still thriving, more and more companies rely on the more effective ways of digital
Read more

Do You See What I See? Explaining Your Vision to Your Client

by Jake Miller @ The Deep End Design

The gloves are off and opinions are flying. In a creative profession, like graphic design, we are all faced with similar situations when meeting with a client. It may not always be a blood bath, but it has the potential to be uncomfortable. After all, it is two professional parties coming together, with their own […]

The post Do You See What I See? Explaining Your Vision to Your Client appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Video: Where is Your Website’s Content Coming From?

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Video Transcript You’ve got a brand new project in the works but where is your content coming from? Whenever we take on a new web project one of the biggest hurdles to the process is always where the content is coming from. It happens all the time. We come up with a very clear web […]

The post Video: Where is Your Website’s Content Coming From? appeared first on The Deep End Design.

What Do Attendees Want from Marketing Conferences?

by rand @ Rand's Blog

Over the course of a few days in mid-December, I ran a survey asking folks about their experiences at conferences and events in the marketing world. 248 people replied, primarily via Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Despite the small number of questions, I found the responses immensely valuable and quite interesting. A few even caught me […]

The post What Do Attendees Want from Marketing Conferences? appeared first on Rand's Blog.

How Online Sales Trends Influence Web Design

by Maciej Fita @

  The e-commerce industry is fast-paced, not just because consumers and online shoppers are constantly shifting but also because competing designers and brands are evolving too. The movement of most users to mobile, for instance, has changed the market considerably. We’ve also seen elements like parallax scrolling, scrollbars, navigation menus and much more rise and
Read more

Using Google Analytics to Look at Just Google Organic Traffic – Were you hit by an algorithm change?

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

In this article we will look at the steps needed to look at just your Google organic traffic in Google Analytics. Looking at just the Google organic traffic can be helpful when trying to determine whether your site has been affected by a change in Google’s algorithm. What is Google Organic Traffic? Organic traffic excludes traffic from sources like Pay Per Click ads (Adwords), Social shares (i.e. […]

The post Using Google Analytics to Look at Just Google Organic Traffic – Were you hit by an algorithm change? appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

16 Search Engine Optimization SEO – DOs and DON’Ts for Small Businesses

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

If you own or manage a small business, search engine optimization SEO can give your site a big traffic boost and in time increase your profits. Unlike most online marketing strategies, SEO is more affordable and increases your visibility by improving your site and content, which makes it a highly reliable long-term strategy. But for […]

The post 16 Search Engine Optimization SEO – DOs and DON’Ts for Small Businesses appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Management of SEO or PPC: Why Not Both?

by Charlie Brown @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

The latest research shows that your company profits most when your SEO and PPC teams work together. Are you sure that is happening? Is your PPC campaign generating profits, or is it just another expense for your company? Have you locally optimized your campaign for mobile devices? Today we will find out how to can…

The post Management of SEO or PPC: Why Not Both? appeared first on Return On Now.

The Secret of Set Ups: The Best Online Strategy for Aspiring Agencies and Web Marketing Consultants

by ian @ web marketing consultant – good karma

Thinking about launching a new online agency or web directory but aren’t sure how you’ll make money?  I’ve had a few questions over the last couple days about how I can be so confident that OTHER people, who don’t consider themselves all that “gifted” in the marketing arena, can so quickly and easily make money […]

The post The Secret of Set Ups: The Best Online Strategy for Aspiring Agencies and Web Marketing Consultants appeared first on good karma.

Why, Where and How to Get Reviews for Your Company

by David Zimmerman @ Reliable Acorn, LLC

When someone looks for your company, what do they find? Does it make you look good? Does it make people want to work with you? Why You Want Business Reviews (on third-party websites) It’s one…

The post Why, Where and How to Get Reviews for Your Company appeared first on Reliable Acorn, LLC.

Digital Marketing Consultants - SEO Consulting - Zephoria Inc.

Digital Marketing Consultants - SEO Consulting - Zephoria Inc.


Zephoria Inc.

Over over twelve years Zephoria has been providing internet marketing consulting services including searching engine optimization and social media consulting.

Google SPAM Algorithm & New SERP Tests

Google SPAM Algorithm & New SERP Tests

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

Ross and John discuss the latest algorithm updates targeting blackhat SEO tactics like PBNs and linkwheels. They also delve into a wide range of news topics from WordPress updates, to AMP URLs, and fresh examples of Google testing search results using categorization. This February 13, 2017 SEO 101 podcast is available now: listen or Download […]

The post Google SPAM Algorithm & New SERP Tests appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

3 Critical Title Tag SEO Best Practices [Video]

3 Critical Title Tag SEO Best Practices [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5-10 Minutes)

You would think creating great title tags is simple right? After all it’s just a 70-character (or less…) line of text, how hard can it be?

The fact is, every single client Biquitous has ever worked with – no matter how large – has always needed help, sometimes urgently, to fix their title tags.

So in this post, I’ll share some of our “secret sauce” for creating great title tags, explain why the title tag is arguably the most important factor for increasing traffic and SEO on your website, and show you 3 critical title tag SEO best practices for creating title tags that will yield the biggest bang for your buck.

(Quick note: For the best experience I recommend watching the short video, but all of the critical elements that you need to know are also in text format below the video along with copious amounts of screenshots.)

What is a “title tag”, why is it useful, and how does it work within search engine results?

  • What Is A “Title Tag”? The title tag is a small bit of code within every single web page (hopefully!) that tells search engines and visitors what the page is about.

  • Why Is It Useful? The title of your page (or title tag – I’ll use the terms interchangeably in this post) is critical and indispensable because it represents your biggest – and oftentimes ONLY – chance to get a visitor to click through to your website, read and/or share your content, and is one of the most powerful on-page SEO factors for search engines.

 

Remember: “On-Page” or “On-Site” SEO refers to search engine optimization strategies and best practices that are done within specific pages or an entire website, respectively, to increase search engine rankings.

  • How Does It Work Within Search Engine Results? For search engine results, the title tag is used as a primary factor in determining what your page is about and is displayed in organic search results, other websites – such as social media sites – and within your web browser at the top and within the tabs.

 

The Title Tag In Your Browser Menu Bar

 

The Title Tag In Your Browser Tab

 

Why is the title tag vital to your company’s Internet marketing strategy?

The title tag is arguably the easiest to implement – and one of the most important – search engine optimization factors for 3 basic reasons:

  • First, it’s the title or headline of your article, blog post or web page, and is the very first thing that people see in search results, or when scanning a page for headlines or something to click on.
  • Second, search engines like Google and Bing place a heavy emphasis on the title tag for ranking your page.
  • Third, a catchy, keyword rich headline attracts more links from other websites all on its own because of the fact that, if the headline was compelling enough for the reader to click on it (and the content on the page backed that up) then you are more likely to get a friendly retweet, Facebook post, or backlink to your article passing it along to others.

So in short, a compelling headline (aka: the title tag, or title) not only speaks to search engines in a language they can understand, but it also is the #1 factor for visitors in deciding whether or not they want to click through and visit your website, and ultimately, whether or not they want to link to your website and share your content with others.

How do you create amazing title tags and what are some best practices for humans and search engines?

Here are 3 strategies and best practices we use at Biquitous to craft the very best title tags:

1. Humans First:

Make sure you write the title tag for human beings first. Why? It does you no good to craft a fancy keyword-rich headline if nobody clicks on it.

The headline should be compelling and descriptive telling the visitor exactly what that page/article is about in as few words as possible.

Think along the lines of writing a newspaper headline: You want to GRAB me and make me want to click on your link, especially if I’m interested in that topic or in need of your product or service, and I’m your target audience.

Remember: Humans First! Make your title tag read like a newspaper headline to attract attention and clicks!

 

Here are some quick guidelines and best practices to accomplish this:

  • Make the headline compelling, but NOT hype or something outlandish
  • Use numbers if appropriate (like the title of this post)
  • Use action words (Best, Powerful, Strategies, Reviews, Video, etc.)
  • Use separators like hyphens (-), pipes (|) or commas (,) but NOT special characters (∞, <, ©, etc.)
  • Use industry specific nomenclature if appropriate (Hog instead of motorcycle, SEM instead of Search Engine Marketing, P/E ratio instead of Price-To-Earnings Ratio, text messaging instead of SMS, etc.)
2. Search Engines Second:

In order to get some SEO value from your title tag, you need to make sure you include at least 1 keyword phrase like:

“Title Tag SEO Best Practices”

instead of generic keywords like:

“Title Tag”

so that the article has a better chance of being found, ranking, and converting for your desired content/keywords on that page.

While beyond the scope of this piece (I’ll post something soon on exactly how to do this) make sure you at least use Google’s Keyword Tool (free) or the SEOMoz Keyword Difficulty Tool (requires subscription) to find appropriate keywords for your title tags based on traffic and competition.

3. Technical Stuff Last:

Now that you’ve put a little time and thought into your title tag, it’s time to fine-tune your title with some final best practices and strategies for usability and the SEO side of things.

  • Title tag character limit: Make sure your title tags are less than 70 characters in length, including spaces, because that is all that that will be displayed in search engine results. Your title tag can be as long as you want it (and sometimes will need to be longer than 70 characters out of necessity) but try your best to keep it under this limit.

  • Most important keywords at the beginning: Try to always put your most important keywords/phrases at the BEGINNING of your title tag. For stylistic and human reading purposes, this might be hard or difficult to do with certain pages/posts, but as a general rule, the search engines give more weight to words at the beginning than at the end of the title tag when ranking your pages.

  • Branding: As a general rule of thumb, you should include your website/company name in your title tag either at the beginning on your homepage, or at the end of your title tag on all other pages and blog posts separated with a pipe (|). However, we’ve done it both ways depending on whether a brand is well known or not. In other words, if it is well known, putting the website or company name at the beginning, regardless of the page, can help with click-through rates because of trust and authority.
If your company is well known and has a powerful brand, it might help click-through rates to put your brand name at the beginning of your title tag.

 

Of course sometimes, even well known brands still put their company name at the end of their title tags.

 

  • Unique title tag for ALL pages: Make sure that you have a unique title tag for each page of your website! Sounds trivial, but you’d be surprised how many websites – especially well-established businesses and brands – have duplicate title tags! This is a big no-no.
  • Keyword stuffing: Don’t think that adding MORE keywords is better. It’s ok to try and rank for a broad phrase that contains a couple of like-minded or similar keywords, but if you overdo it, you will get penalized. For something as important and simple as your title tag, it’s not worth the risk!

Bottom Line:

The title tag is easy to understand and simple to execute making it one of my favorite starting points for beginning or fixing a company’s SEO strategy.

By utilizing these best practices and examples, you can quickly and easily see where your company has perhaps gone astray with your SEO and, while it might take some time depending on the size of your site, the investment is well worth making sure that your title tags are the best they can be for both humans and search engines.

If you’ve got anything to add that you think I missed or is vital (I tried to be concise and direct without going into minutiae) please leave a comment below.

For more great resources on the title tag, check out these articles:

 ...Read More >>

Preparing Your Site for the Holidays

by Rob Toledo @ The Deep End Design

The holidays present an exciting time for your business, full of opportunity for growth and new customer relationships. Understandably, the holiday season is the busiest time for online shopping. By appropriately reflecting what your business offers and how it meets the needs of online shoppers through your website, you show consumers that yours is the […]

The post Preparing Your Site for the Holidays appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Reputation Management & Owning the First Page

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

Reputation Management & Owning the First Page Let’s face it we have been taught since we were kids that your reputation is everything in life, and as we get older you should realize it more and more.  Apply that concept to any facet of your life including business and you will see that it could […]

The post Reputation Management & Owning the First Page appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

The Nest Thermostat: Values, Passion & Emotion -- A Branding Story

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5-10 Minutes)

Sometimes we forget what really matters.

We forget that the primary job of marketing is to elicit a strong reaction for our brand, products and services.

Customers don't care how cool YOU think your products are, only how cool THEY think your products are!

The landscape is littered with dinosaurs who thought their products were great (and in fact they might have been) but nobody cared because their marketing and connection with their target audience was not executed properly.

Much to my surprise, a simple thermostat (really, a thermostat!) has reminded me of exactly why we cannot forget the core tenets of marketing, branding and connecting with our customers on a deep and emotional level -- call it Marketing 101.

Let's Talk Thermostats and Internet Marketing -- No Really!

By now you've probably seen or heard about the new Nest Learning Thermostat.

It's sleek, clean, beautiful to look at, and invokes a sense of wonder at the possibilities -- if a simple thermostat can be this cool, what else in your house can be turned into a functional work of art?

But the design, function and launch strategy of the Nest "smart" thermostat -- founded by Tony Fadell, designer of the iPod -- works on many different levels that we can and should be using within our own Internet marketing and business strategies constantly.

In a great article by Wired Magazine, Fadell explains his concept for the thermostat:

Untold tons of carbon were being pumped into the air, with people losing billions of dollars in energy costs, all because there was no easy, automatic way to control the temperature. But what if you could apply all the skills and brilliance of Silicon Valley to produce a thermostat that was smart, thrifty and so delightful that saving energy was as much fun as shuffling an iTunes playlist?

From the article about how the Nest Learning Thermostat works:

The Nest is the iPod of thermostats. A simple loop of brushed stainless steel encases a chassis of reflective polymer, which encircles a crisp color digital display. Artificial intelligence figures out when to turn down the heat and when to jack up the air conditioning, so that you don’t waste money and perturb the ozone when no one is home, or when you’re asleep upstairs. You can communicate with the Nest from your smartphone, tablet or web browser.

The Most Powerful Lesson In Marketing

At the heart of Nest is a set of core values passed down by the founders that dictates not only the entire direction of product development, but also influences their entire marketing campaign and website design strategy.

What I want to do is focus on these core values for 2 important reasons:

1) The top down strategy, execution and value system has created an amazing product out of what used to be an afterthought

2) These same core values are a very important part of why Nest has so far been extremely successful in their marketing

As a result of these core values and an amazing product, Nest thermostats have sold out quickly (you now have to wait till next year to get one!) even though they were being sold for $249 a pop -- with installation costing $119!

Imagine that: Creating buzz for a product that is arguably not a necessity but a luxury.

Here's a quote from the company's own blog, by the VP of engineering Matt Rogers:

We’ve worked for a year and a half to create The Nest Learning Thermostat. It’s the culmination of all we care about -- cutting waste, creating technology that makes a difference, solving a daily frustration -- and everything we’ve learned:

  • Invest a ton in design.
  • Sweat even the smallest details.
  • Never compromise when it comes to the customer experience.
  • Push technology further than anyone thinks it will go.

Takeaway #1: Start With Your Passion - Create Amazing Products & Services

It all begins with the underlying company values, strategy and objectives handed down by leadership.

I believe it starts with an underlying passion for something -- whether to change the world, enlighten, entertain, serve, solve a problem or frustration, etc.

For example when designing the Biquitous website, I thought long and hard about what I stood for, what types of clients I wanted to work with (not the other way around!) and how I could explain what we did in an emotional way that would immediately resonate with my target client.

For me, it wasn't just about SEO, website design or Internet marketing -- it was much deeper than that.

It was about becoming true partners with the companies we worked with and creating long lasting and collaborative relationships that would last for years.

Every aspect of our Internet strategy, ad copy, videos and web design always took these values and message into account.

Nest did the same thing when creating a revolutionary thermostat that "speaks" to their target audience.

In fact, looking at the Nest thermostat, you can see the loving attention to detail and the company's core values in every square inch of the brushed metal surface and user-friendly functionality.

The simple takeaway is to create a company/product/service that you yourself would use -- and believe in -- and deliver it exactly the way you would want it delivered.

Takeaway #2: Execute That Same Vision In Your Entire Marketing Strategy

Now that you've got an amazing product that you firmly believe in, take those same core values and extend them to your marketing efforts to elicit passion and desire within your target audience.

Let's look at the bullet points from Matt Roger's blog post to bring the point home and apply them directly to your own company and specifically your online presence:

  • Invest a ton in design: For most business leaders this usually means making sure that 3 critical areas of your Internet presence are taken care of: Strategy, Execution and Results.

In other words, you need to "invest a ton in design" to ensure that your website looks fantastic, attracts your target audience, elicits passion within your customers and converts visitors into sales.

Let's not kid ourselves, the #1 reason why the Nest thermostat is sold out is because it looks cool and there's nothing like it on the market, not because of its other features, which are also fantastic.

If you get customers to inquire about or purchase your products or services because your marketing/branding/website were deemed "cool", interesting, or they addressed a direct frustration, then you've done your job.

  • Sweat even the smallest details: This is very important for Internet marketers and business leaders as a whole.

You simply cannot afford to have simple things fall through the cracks and diminish the "gut" feeling a potential client has when they visit your website because your contact form doesn't work, you have broken links, your spelling or grammar is incorrect, or some other "detail" simply wasn't done right.

Testing and refinement are CRITICAL to an overall polished and congruent experience for your target audience.

It's worth the extra money to hire a site tester, proof reader or copy editor and have someone obsess over the tiniest details that could diminish your brand in any way.

Remember this saying as you navigate these sometimes treacherous waters:

The easier something is to use, the harder it was to create.

The opposite also holds true, and people will notice.

  • Never compromise when it comes to the customer experience: This represents the biggest conundrum for marketers.

With deadlines as well as customer and management expectations, how do you balance launching a product or service with making sure that the customer experience is as polished as possible?

Part of eliciting passion when someone interacts with your product or service revolves around the little details that add up to a monumental experience.

Each incremental detail encompasses and entire perception: a slow loading web page, a difficult to use form, strange colors that don't mesh well together, etc.

Taken alone, they aren't that big of a deal, but together represent essential shortcomings in your Internet marketing strategy and tell a subtle tale about the type of company you operate  and what will be tolerated.

When someone visits your website or sees your product or service, you'll likely get only one chance to make an immediate and lasting impression.

When you see the Nest thermostat or visit the Nest website, that impression is of the highest caliber.

  • Push technology further than anyone thinks it will go: As a leader within your organization, it is your singular duty to utilize the latest technologies and best practices to not only increase your company's bottom line, but to also serve your customers in ways they've never thought possible.

Nest does this by aligning their website to your Nest thermostat so that you can check in and see how it is being used and what days you used less energy than anticipated.

In addition, Nest has an app that allows you to synch with your Nest thermostat automatically to your smartphone through Wi-Fi while also allowing you to adjust the temperature remotely.

Are you missing out on ways you can streamline your customer experience, deliver more value to your target audience and wow current and future customers by offering a product or service in ways they've rarely if ever been offered before?

What about extracting further value from what you are already doing through continuing education and studying the greats not only in your industry, but others as well?

Are you using the latest in video, social media, SEO, landing page optimization strategies or other initiatives to constantly improve your message to your target audience and always ensure you are delivering that message in ways they want to receive it?

Bottom Line:

There are so many bad examples of what NOT to do when it comes to marketing in general, and the Internet in particular, that I wanted to focus on the stuff that Nest does right so that we can apply it to our own Internet and business marketing strategies.

It starts at the top with a passion and commitment to excellence for what you do as a brand that then extends to every piece of your marketing efforts.

People know when they're being duped -- they can smell it a mile away.

When all is said and done, the purpose of marketing is to elicit passion to get your target audience to take action -- whatever action that might be.

The most successful marketing strategies align a company's internal core values with the very best marketing initiatives to bring that message to their audience in a clean, authentic and passionate way that resonates on a gut level with their customers and clients.

Who would have thought that a simple thermostat could teach us so much about how to market on the Internet? ...Read More >>

Danny Sullivan Shifting Gears

by @ All Forums

As so many others are doing...and now Danny himself is permitting himself to do new things.

 

Well deserved.

 

I would not have been a SEO in the 90's and early 20's if not for him.  

 

 

After 21 years running sites about and covering digital and search marketing, it’s time for a change. I’m becoming an advisor to Third Door Media, a shift from my position as chief content officer.

 

 

Danny Sullivan: My new role as advisor for Third Door Media

3 Steps To Improve Your Local SEO

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

If anyone has hired a major SEO company to audit and enhance a website, then that person may likely be paying for services they don’t need. With some testing, we have found that most local businesses can rank by keeping a few simple tips in mind.

The post 3 Steps To Improve Your Local SEO appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

A Look Into The Science of Web Design

by Jake Downs @ The Deep End Design

When working on a new site, one mistake that often occurs is focusing too much on the art of the web design and not enough on the science. Aesthetics aside, everything from layout to font choice should be guided by user testing to ensure that the website is not only pretty but also functioning at […]

The post A Look Into The Science of Web Design appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Complete 5-Step On Page SEO Checklist [Video]

Complete 5-Step On Page SEO Checklist [Video]

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read/Watch Time: (5 - 10 Minutes)

We get asked all the time for a checklist to specifically help companies with their ON-page SEO (vs. OFF-page, or off-site SEO).

There’s nothing worse for your website than spending hours creating great content only for nobody to ever see it or read it, because you didn’t take the time to ensure that search engines could find your page, crawl it and index it properly.

So I thought the best thing to do would be to cull together the best practices that we use at Biquitous when we either publish content ourselves or for our clients, and create a step-by-step blueprint that you can use immediately to make sure your own content is search engine friendly.

This short video will give you a handy 5-step on page SEO checklist to ensure that any content that you create is search engine friendly and has the highest chance to rank because you did everything in your power to make sure your content is ready to be crawled and indexed properly.

I originally created this video for the Retargeter blog.

(Quick note: For the best experience I recommend watching the short video, but all of the critical elements that you need to know are also in text format below the video along with copious amounts of screenshots.)

First Question: Does Your Content Suck?

So let’s start at the top.

Let’s say you’ve created a fantastic page, some great content, wonderful graphics, a great lead-in, and the page delivers awesome value to your readers…

Wait a minute…before we go any further, I need to ask you about your content.

You see, if your content stinks or you haven’t taken the time to ensure that what you are about to publish is something that you would recommend to your friends, family or colleagues, then stop what you are doing and make something that is!

The checklist I’m about to share with you assumes you’ve already crossed this threshold and your content is golden.

In the end, it doesn’t matter if your page is SEO friendly if the content on the page doesn’t compel others to share that content or pass it on.

Great Content? - Now You're Ready!

So, let’s assume you’ve done your homework, and what you are about to release to the world is stellar content.

I’m also going to assume that you know what specific keywords you want to rank for in the process of creating this great content.

So now what?

Well, now you need to make sure you’ve optimized your page properly so that search engines can index your page and others can find it.

So without further ado, here’s our 5-step On-Page SEO Checklist that we use at Biquitous to ensure that all the content you create has the best chance possible to rank highly in the search engines.

#1 Is the Title of Your Post:

Sounds simple right?

Wrong! The title of your post is THE most critical on-page ranking factor, so you better spend some time to make sure it’s done right.

Here are some quick tips to ensure that happens:

  • Make sure the title tag is written for humans first. So, while it’s important that you incorporate your main keyword phrase in your title, it’s more important that human beings feel compelled to click on it and share it with others.

  • Then make sure that your title tag includes elements that search engines are looking for. Use your main keyword phrase that you are trying to rank for – usually a group of 2-4 words, rather than 1 generic word – in the title in a natural way.

Try and put your most important keywords towards the beginning of the title.

  • Finally, make sure that your title is less than 70 characters in length, although this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Sometimes depending on the content, you’ll need to make your title longer than 70 characters, but as a general rule, try to keep it below this number.

One final bonus tip about the title: make sure your URL matches the title with hyphens separating each word, stripping out words such as “and, the, but", etc. This will add a little bit of extra SEO juice to your article.

What a well-titled URL will look like in your address bar
An Example:

An example title for an article about “diamond studded dog collars” would be:

“The Most Opulent Diamond Studded Dog Collars Revealed”

That title is 51 characters long, includes the main keyword phrase naturally, and draws the user in by promising a fantastic article on the most opulent diamond studded dog collars ever created.

The URL will then look something like this:

most-opulent-diamond-studded-dog-collars-revealed

Shorten your URL by removing words if it is too long and remember that in addition to helping the search engines categorize your page better, users also look at the URL in search results. The shorter and cleaner it is, the better your potential to rank higher and get more visitors.

For a complete breakdown of the title tag and 3 Critical Title Tag Best Practices, click here.

#2 Is the Description META Tag of Your Post:

The description tag is not specifically used by search engines as a ranking factor –in fact most completely ignore it – but it IS used by human beings to decide if they want to click through and visit your website and shows up on search engine results pages below the title of your page.

So that being said, here are some quick guidelines for creating a great description that compels a user to click through to your page, and inadvertently, also raises the SEO profile of your page:

  • First, repeat the main keywords that are in your title in your description in a natural way. You can and should also include like-minded or similar keywords if appropriate

  • Then, within your description you should include a compelling call to action. In other words, entice the person searching for that topic to click through to your page. Use language that tells the reader what to do, or promises something of value once they get to your page. You can use subtle phrasing or words like “Click Here” or “Watch a Video” depending on your specific content

  • Finally, keep the description under 160 characters, and ideally less than 140 characters in length for several reasons: First, search engines will cut off your description at 160 characters, and second, most social media websites will only display the first 140 characters of your description when users share your content

An Example:

So an example of a great description for an article about “diamond studded dog collars” would be something like:

“Diamond studded dog collars aren’t for every dog owner. But if you’re into pampering your canine, this post shares the very best collars money can buy.”

By the way, that’s 151 characters.

It contains the keywords of the article, and includes a natural and subtle call to action promising the user what they’ll find if they click on that link.

# 3 Is Ensuring You Include Alternate Text and Titles For All Images:

Users that are either visually impaired or have image loading turned off in their browsers will see a box with words where your image was supposed to be.

(Hover over this image to see the "Title" text in action)

In addition, search engines use this information to understand more about your page and what your images are about.

So, make sure that each image on your page includes a distinct “Alternate text” description that includes some of your keywords and similar phrases, and a “Title” that also describes the image and is different than your Alt text.

An Example:

In our example above, say we had an image of a diamond studded dog collar.

We would make the image’s Alternate text say something like:

“Image of a diamond studded dog collar”

and the Title say something like:

“Diamond Studded Dog Collar On A Black Dog”

#4 Is “Keyword Consolidation”:

All this means is that when you’ve written your article you need to run through it and make sure that the main keywords you want to rank for as well as similar phrases, are used naturally throughout your article.

The reason that this isn’t #1 on the list is because all the search engines put a much lower priority on this than they used to, and if you overdo it, you will get penalized for keyword stuffing.

So while important, I don’t want you to get fixated on inserting a certain number of keywords, or counting the number of times a word shows up on your page.

Some things you should tidy up include:

  • Ensuring that your main keyword phrase is used at least 1 time in your post, preferably near the beginning of the page
  • Ensuring that related words and phrases are also used throughout the page in a NATURAL way
  • Ensuring that at least some of your sub-headers (sometimes known as H1 through H6 tags) for sections within the page contain those phrases

Again, I don’t want you to get fixated on this, which is why I put this next to last, but it is something you should at least make sure is done to some extent for congruency.

But don’t overdo it, or you will be penalized!

#5 Is External Links:

An often overlooked strategy for higher rankings is by making sure that you link to related and valuable pages both on your own website as well as trusted and authoritative external websites.

Google will take your page more seriously, give you a higher authority, and improve your rankings over time, if you link to other websites that are similar to yours that provide value to your readers and better context or further reading related to your content.

Here are some quick rules of thumb for doing this correctly:

  • You should provide a link to another resource about every 300-400 words if appropriate. Depending on the nature of the page or content, you will either have more or less. That’s ok, this is just a rule of thumb so that you don’t write an entire page with absolutely no links to other pages on it
  • Make sure you link to pages on your own website, as well as those of outside sources
  • When you link to those pages, make sure you use description rich anchor text and a title to help both your users and search engines understand the context of the link
An Example:

So an example using our “diamond studded dog collars” from before would be to link to another page on your site that talks about “diamond studded dog leashes” and has that phrase as the anchor text:

or something like “great resources for dog collars” that links to an outside authoritative website about dog collars:

This lets search engines know that you are helping your users find more relevant content about the topic of your page.

Bottom Line:

So, there you have it.

A complete 5 step on-page SEO checklist to optimize your pages BEFORE you hit the “publish” button on any content you create on your website.

If you follow this system, I guarantee that you’ll get much better results from your content generating initiatives on a consistent basis.

If you’ve got anything to add that you think I missed or is vital (I tried to be concise and direct without going into minutiae) please leave a comment below.

 ...Read More >>

Base Vs Infusionsoft

by Ben Pearce @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

An important point that many business owners overlook is that what supports your business also supports you. The point of […]

The post Base Vs Infusionsoft appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

How to Create Captivating Homepage Videos

by Rob Toledo @ The Deep End Design

Your website’s home page should be working as hard as it can to make sure the visitors you receive really get your company. Your homepage should explain exactly what it is you do in as brief an amount of time as possible, and one of the most effective ways of making sure it’s doing that […]

The post How to Create Captivating Homepage Videos appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Best Online Business Ideas for 2017

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Know anyone who wants to start their own online business? Here are 5 Ideas.   .   To view the entire article, click here (from Website Magazine) https://www.websitemagazine.com/blog/best-online-business-ideas-for-2017

The post Best Online Business Ideas for 2017 appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Google Search Results Pages Just Changed in a Big Way

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

This week, Google released an update that radically changed the layout of their search results pages (SERPs). Google has eliminated the ads that ran down the right side of the page. Over the last few years, Google has continuously been tweaking search results page layouts in an effort to test different versions for usability and […]

The post Google Search Results Pages Just Changed in a Big Way appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Search Marketing Consultant & Internet Marketing Specialist in New York | Jon Clark

Search Marketing Consultant & Internet Marketing Specialist in New York | Jon Clark


Jon Lee Clark

Search marketing specialist & search marketing consultant located in New York, NY. Expert in pay per click (PPC) & search engine optimization (SEO).

Improving Your Web Design Workflow

by Gabriel Vasile @ The Deep End Design

One of the most important things these days for web designers, developers and especially freelancers seems to be improving their every day workflow and doing more within less time. If this is done properly, it usually translates in less headaches and more profit. But usually, changing the actual workflow and tools means time investing in […]

The post Improving Your Web Design Workflow appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Words You Choose Make A Difference In Sales – 13 Case Studies

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

The words you use in your advertising do make a difference in your sales. Here are some examples.   The old button showed a picture of a shopping cart  ​ “Add to cart” increased sales by 49%​   “CTA” stands for “Call To Action” .   To view the entire article, click this link (from Hubspot): https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/word-choice-conversion-case-studies

The post Words You Choose Make A Difference In Sales – 13 Case Studies appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Google Adwords 2.0

by Neal Olson @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

Enterprise Center at Salem State University   121 Loring Ave | Salem, MA, 01970 October 1 @ 8:00 am – 10:00 am Back by popular demand!  The March workshop on the power of Google AdWords at the Enterprise Center at Salem State University by Hans Riemer was so well received, a more advanced workshop on how […]

The post Google Adwords 2.0 appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Why Your Online Advertising Isn’t Working and How Compelling Copy Can Increase Sales Exponentially

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Why Your Online Advertising Isn’t Working and How Compelling Copy Can Increase Sales Exponentially  In this blog post you’ll discover […]

The post Why Your Online Advertising Isn’t Working and How Compelling Copy Can Increase Sales
Exponentially
appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Website Pixel Width Revisited For 2017

by @ Site Planning and Preparation

Above and Beyond – The Ultimate Customer Experience

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

The customer experience doesn’t end once an order is placed, a product is shipped, or a service is rendered. The customer experience is ongoing, and it plays a huge role in a business’s reputation.

The post Above and Beyond – The Ultimate Customer Experience appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

Hey Google: You’re Really Starting To Piss Me Off!

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

Hey Google, you’re really starting to piss me off!

And I’m not just talking as an Internet marketer, but also as a consumer.

Most Internet marketers and the folks that use your products and services are too scared, or fear reprisal, to say anything – so somebody needed to call you out on all the crap you’ve been pulling lately.

I decided to take on that challenge and write this open letter to help you learn from your mistakes and change your ways.

After all, you’re only biting the hand that feeds you.

Let’s get right to it.

Here are just some of the things that are chapping my ass:

Panda:

Never has an animal this cute and cuddly stricken such fear into the hearts and minds of legitimate website owners and operators.

We all know the intent of the update(s), why it needed to be done, and that one day the Internet will be a better place because of it.

All that being said, you blew it on this one.

Sure, you gave us some pretty darn useful guidelines as to what constitutes “high quality” websites (thanks for that by the way), but you never told us what to do if we already had a high quality website – by your own standards no less – that received a major smackdown.

What are we supposed to do if our content is already of the highest caliber, but our rankings, traffic and businesses got slaughtered as a result of Mr. Panda?

On top of that, what the hell are we supposed to think when you go against your own quality guidelines and rank a spammy/smutty/scraper website above a REAL, useful website?

I think Rick Santorum might also have a personal bone to pick with you…

As a matter of fact, you’re even asking for OUR help to fix your problem!

I guess you aren’t above acknowledging you didn’t get this right either, so let’s keep this simple.

How 'bout a nice handy set of instructions on how to systematically fix Panda ranking problems instead of some vague, obtuse and somewhat condescending criteria that can be very subjective depending on whom you ask?

Fair enough?

(Not Provided):

Really Google? You’re withholding the very keyword data from me that my customers and their customers are using to search for and find our products and services – for the benefit of consumer protection?

Really…?

So let me get this straight:

If a potential customer is logged into any Google application (Gmail, Analytics, FeedBurner, Google+, etc.), their browsing is anonymous and we CAN’T see what search terms they are using to find our websites using YOUR analytics software.

However, if a potential customer is not logged in (which you have to go out of your way to do), we CAN see what search terms they are using to find and click through to our websites.

Ok, I can understand that, I’m all for consumer protection and all.

Except for one small problem: We can still see that same referral data (whether the potential customer is logged in or not) from our PAID AdWords accounts!

So which is it: Are you protecting consumers while hurting us as advertisers, or are you helping us as advertisers while hurting consumers?

Or is it merely that so long as we pay you, then you’re perfectly willing to violate your own defined standards for “consumer protection”?

Either way, I just want to say thanks.

Thanks for withholding up to 20% of keyword data - and in some cases much more – that could help me actually make the web a better place.

Google+:

This is one of my favorites.

Hey we all wish we were as big as Facebook and had over 800 million users spending hours on our websites each and every month.

So as a result of user envy you’ve decided that – in our best interest of course – you’re going to force everyone who cares about their Internet marketing, rankings and social media presence to open up a Google+ account, endorse it on our websites, and make others use it too, so that you can grow your own user base and make a run at Facebook, Twitter, et al.?

Nice.

That should go over well with Mom and Dad – after all, they just opened their Facebook accounts and have been looking for a way to “Circle” little Jonny so he doesn’t see all their private chatter about him.

That’s also really going to go over well with all my clients who have already spent thousands of dollars on their social media presences only to be told – by me no less – that if they don’t get on this Google+ thing their rankings and SEO might suffer because – in your infinite wisdom – you are now promoting Google+ results over other organic and paid results.

Yet another redundant and force fed social network we have to spend time setting up and optimizing? Really?

Oh, and don’t get me started on that whole Search Plus Your World (SPYW) crap where I now have to filter my own search results!

And I’m not the only one pissed off about this whole thing either.

Seems like you’ve once again attracted privacy and antitrust concerns.

Hey it’s better to ask for forgiveness right?

Pharmacy Ads:

Thanks for helping a convicted con artist set up illegal pharmaceutical and supplement ads!

Much appreciated.

Hey, at least his time was well spent helping you and prosecutors find the cracks in your system, which did get you nailed for doing this across the board to the tune of $500 million.

I know we Americans really like our “pharmaceuticals” and we’ll go to great lengths to get them, but isn’t your mantra “Don’t Be Evil”?

Just sayin’…

“Updated” Privacy Policy:

Listen, I really appreciate you for updating your stalker privacy policy and making it just one document.

I mean, before there were just too many disparate documents across multiple platforms to wade through.

But now…

Heck, I might even pour myself a cold one, maximize my computer screen and actually sit through this baby, ‘cause I know you would never make the same mistake that you did with that whole Google Buzz fiasco – Right?

Fortunately, there are others who have our back, and tell us that all this new policy does is reinforce the old one(s) – you know, where you told us in not-so-uncertain terms that we can’t opt out if we want to actually use Gmail, Google Analytics or other cool stuff that might prove useful every once in awhile.

I know some are pretty upset about this policy as well as your latest breach overriding privacy controls for iPhone and Mac users – but not me.

I’m stoked that I don’t have to read over 60 different documents now.

And, from watching your nifty little video (below), I’ve come to really respect and admire these changes, because now you will be able to provide me with a “better, more intuitive experience” as you track my search history.

Thanks for thinking of me.

Overall Hypocritical & Bullying Behavior:

Geez, I feel like this list could go on forever.

But, since I know you you’ve got plenty more disruptive behavior to get to, I’ll just focus on some of the latest hits of your hypocritical and bullying ways:

  •  Paid Links: It’s wrong to buy links – Right?

In fact, if I do it, you’ve made it very clear that I’ll get spanked on my backside.

Great, got it.

So why the hell are you purchasing links for Google Chrome?

  •  Page Layout Penalty: According to your new guidelines on page layouts, websites with too many ads on them, specifically “above the fold” – those at the top of a webpage – will be penalized.

Ok, I can see that.

Nobody likes clicking on a site expecting content and then having to wade through gobs of advertising.

I think we’re in agreement on this one.

Except for one small problem: Your entire search engine is TOP HEAVY with ads!                                                  

(Image taken by Daniel Weadley)

And to top it all off, you recommend websites squash the crap out of their own content by surrounding it on all sides with ads from your advertising network.

From your own guidelines:

“All other things being equal, ads located above the fold tend to perform better than those below the fold. Ads placed near rich content and navigational aids usually do well because users are focused on those areas of a page.”

Umm…yeahhh…

  •  Google Affiliate Network: I just caught wind of this one via a great article.

Essentially you don’t allow the promotion of “weapons related merchandise” on your affiliate network.

Sounds fair, after all you don’t want to actively promote violence and stuff.

But what about hunting or fishing blogs?

How is a knife used for cleaning and gutting a fish different from the one you use in your kitchen to chop up tonight’s meal?

In fact, your own detailed weapons policy prohibits promoting guns, ammunition and knives "such as butterfly knives, switchblades (and) disguised knives," but specifically allows promoting kitchen knives and swords!

Swords? Say what?

  •  Censored Results: Remember that whole “Don’t Be Evil” thing?

Well, it looks like you caved in to a communist government by specifically censoring search results for users in China.

I don’t have to tell you how this looks, do I?

Thankfully you’ve already reversed course on this.

  •  Being a Bully: You’ve been accused of many things Google, and being a bully is high on that list.

I could go on for days about the things you’ve done to others, but for me personally, I’m not happy with:

--> Slowing down or throttling applications that frequently use your search results for their software, API or tools.

Once again, you’re in effect biting the hand that feeds you.

Our applications and searches power an entire industry that is bringing you lots of money – billions, in fact.

So stop messing with us.

--> Not showing links or anchor text to a page for “competitive reasons.”

You claim that showing this data will help fight spam, but come on – you know that every other app/program for SEO does this already, so what’s the difference?

Your data could help alleviate a lot of confusion and bring some sort of standard to the industry as we attempt to help our clients.

Again, you’re just biting the hand that feeds you – namely SEO’s and Internet marketers trying to help your users find great websites and content.

I could go on, but I don’t have all day.

In fact a client just left me a message asking why they are being outranked on Google “by someone with this Google+ thing”…sigh…

In Conclusion:

Don’t forget Google, that when you were in your infancy, it was companies like mine that brought you to prominence – and we keep you there to this day.

You’re riding on the backs of millions of businesses and users that advertise on your networks, use your products and spend countless hours with you every single day.

When you first started out, you were a speck on the horizon – an upstart with a funny name.

If you keep this disruptive, manipulative and oppressive shit up, we’ll have no choice but to move on, leave you behind and find – or create – something else

A useful entity that appreciates us, is transparent and honest, eats their own cooking and actually understands that we have a choice.

And while you’re really starting to piss me off, I’m making this effort to reach out to you in the hopes that you will see the light, get off your high horse and do right by the community that brought you to where you are now.

One can only hope that “Don’t Be Evil” also extends to being wise enough to listen to those you serve. ...Read More >>

Website Copyright

by @ Internet Law and Ethics

Why Most Websites Fail and What To Do About It

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

Most websites fail miserably at the only thing they were ultimately designed to do: Generate sales.

Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on where your website stands, most websites fail because of one simple reason:

They were created BACKWARDS.

Let me explain what I mean with the graphic below from a leadership perspective (a graphic on the technical perspective follows later in the post):

(Click on image to enlarge)

(Note: Please feel free to use any original image in this post on your website, just link back to this post as the original source.)

You see, what often happens is that in a rush to get a website on the Internet and start branding, selling or collecting customer information, a business and the leaders responsible for that website, don't take the time to ensure that they are creating a sustainable and highly converting Internet presence.

Let's call this the "Ready, Fire, Aim" approach vs. "Ready, Aim, Fire" -- with an extra "Fire" thrown in the mix.

  • Ready: We need a website... (Mild panic)
  • Fire: We need more traffic! (Panic level rises)
  • Fire Again: Wait, the traffic isn't converting, we need more conversions! (Really panicked)
  • Aim: Sigh...we need to redesign our entire online presence. (Resignation)

So What Goes Wrong?

This is a classic case of basic human nature rearing its ugly head on a broad scale.

If I told you as an owner, CEO or high level leader of your company's Internet presence -- and for that matter pretty much anyone who has ever built or owned a website -- "Hey, this is going to take 3-6 months because we need to make sure we get it right..." you're going to take a deep breath, not say a word for about 30 seconds and then unleash a diatribe about launch dates, deadlines and "can't miss" product releases all relying on a website to get the word out.

This is all very understandable - we want things done NOW and results even sooner.

The thought of taking any extra time to get your web presence done right complete with back end systems and strategy, deep analysis and research, and a sound actionable marketing plan to convert visitors into sales, just feels like too much to bear when you've got anxious board members, stakeholders or the CEO or business owner staring at a blank "coming soon" page.

As often happens, those who don't truly understand Internet marketing, branding, strategy, how to increase market share, and what it takes to create a successful online presence, are more interested in expediency than they are in making sure that things are done right.

Actually, that's not true.

They want the best of both worlds:

Great...would you also like top 10 rankings for all your keywords and an 8 PageRank home page within 3 months to go with that?

Why This Approach Fails Every Time

What most business leaders and website owners need to realize is that you'll wind up costing yourself MORE in the long run -- both time and money -- working backwards trying to fix something that was terminally broken from the very start.

See if the following (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) scenario applies to your business or, ahem, someone you know:

(Click on image to enlarge)

Ready: We need a website

    • You quickly bought a domain name without thought to branding, ease of use, or SEO. So what if your domain name has 3 hyphens in it and is 70 characters long? Customers will easily remember it and search engines will love it.
    • You then hired a cheap designer, purchased a web "pro" package, or asked someone you know personally or within the company to create a website mock-up.
    • Next, you looked up some competitor's websites and keywords (or skipped this step entirely), and other sites that you thought looked good and copied what they were doing.
    • In your infinite wisdom, you and your "team" decided that the "Buy Now" button should be purple and in 4 places on every page and that your navigational bar should contain precisely 20 drop down menus, along with other cool design features your "team" thought were vital.
    • Your mock up was "good enough," approved, and was then sent to the programming "team" to code.
    • The site had bugs and flaws, but you had to launch.

Fire: We need more traffic

    • You were excited about the new launch...but then what? Oh yeah, you needed traffic!
    • So your business reached out to everyone you and your "team" knows in an effort to drum up buzz and go viral: friends, family, colleagues, and other websites and businesses, but for some reason it didn't work.
    • You then decided to try this whole "social media" thing because that was absolutely guaranteed to work. After all, your kids are on there all the time, and last you heard, Facebook had over 1 Billion folks using it.
    • Next, you threw money at the wall like spaghetti to see what would stick -- PPC ads, Print, Directories, Paid Links, Content Creation, E-mail marketing, and more -- oh my!
    • The site still wasn't really getting the traffic you expected, but all this "hard work" started to pay off -- you were now seeing incremental traffic -- but it was costing you.

Fire Again: The traffic isn't converting

    • Something just wasn't right. You were spending a lot of money and time on traffic and lead generation, but what little you got didn't pay off and certainly wasn't returning your initial investment.
    • You and your "team" read some blogs about SEO, Internet marketing and sales strategies.
    • Your "team" then decided that the "Buy Now" button should instead be red and be included in 2 more places on every page.
    • You changed the images you were using on your home and product pages.
    • You modified your META tags and added some ALT tags to your pages.
    • You stepped up and hired a friend or asked someone internal to rewrite the ad copy on the site.
    • You added a Verisign, Authorize.net or BBB logo to your checkout page.
    • You lowered your prices -- then raised them again.
    • You offered coupons, specials and other discounts.
    • You started sending out 3 newsletters a week instead of 1.
    • Unfortunately, even with all these awesome improvements, your site still wasn't converting sales -- at least not enough to justify this whole "Internet marketing" thing.
    • You decided to turn everything off, reevaluate the situation and devote your time and money to other initiatives.

Aim: We need to redesign our entire online presence...

    • After staring at the same old, tired, worn and cash-draining website, you realize you need help.
    • You look around for experts to help you and come to understand that you did everything backwards.
    • You wonder how much time and money it's going to take to fix your online presence...

By the time a company reaches out for help (once they realize that they aren't experts and what they did is not working) the entire strategy needs to be pretty much executed from the ground up at a huge cost to the business -- which is why they so often put it off as long as humanly possible.

If you're reading this right now, you know who you are.

How To Make Sure This Doesn't Happen To You - Ready, Aim, Fire

Now that we understand what went wrong and why you're not seeing the results you want, let's now focus on developing the basic fundamentals of your Internet presence.

Without first tying your marketing efforts into a specific strategy, conversion factor or lead generation system, you're basically throwing money at a problem (low rankings, lack of traffic, low conversions) for the wrong reason (you think you want higher rankings, more traffic) when instead the question or concern that should be addressed is this:

How do we get MORE conversions and sales once a visitor reaches our website?

Here's a simple 3-step process that we use with clients every day at Biquitous based on our proprietary 3-Phase Internet Marketing Execution Framework, that will help you avoid the "Ready, Fire, Aim" problem, and ensure you build your website and Internet presence right the first time.


(Click image to enlarge)

Phase 1: Strategy

==> Ready - Plan BEFORE Taking Action

  • Take a 30,000 Foot View: What is the objective of your entire Internet presence and online marketing strategy?

Nothing happens until you understand the exact purpose of your online marketing as it relates to your current corporate strategy and future business objectives. How will your online presence be a conduit towards the one goal that you REALLY care about: increasing sales, and with it, cash flow?

  • Evaluate Your Online Presence: With the clarity of your company, business and online marketing strategy in place, you then need to look at your current website and online presence in order to fix what’s broken or ensure that it is built properly the first time.

This means taking a deep look at things like:

  • Accurately depicting the value and services that you offer potential customers
  • Colors, branding and message
  • Infrastructure and level of sophistication needed to serve your company objectives: i.e. is the website for customers, vendors, employees, or a combination of all three?
  • And finally, usability for both existing and potential customers, AND your internal staff and vendors
  • Analyze Your Competition, Marketplace and Target Audience: Your business doesn’t operate in a vacuum and neither will your website.

You'll want to gain a full understanding of:

  • Your top 5 competitors (believe me, there are ALWAYS competitors!)
  • The marketplace where you will be doing business - both online and offline
  • Your target client/customer avatar (full demographics, frustrations, etc.)
  • Understand Potential Customer Behavior: Now you'll want to specifically delve into how potential clients and customers will use or are using the Internet to find and interact with your company.

Specifically you'll want to know:

  • Do your current and potential customers use search engines, social media -- or both -- to find your website?
  • What keywords are they using to find your website? What keywords convert the best? What keywords can you easily rank for and which will take longer to rank for?
  • What call-to-action, value statements and content are needed to get them excited about your website or click the “Add To Cart” button?
  • What types of colors, website design, user interface and other criteria does your website need in order to keep visitors on your site longer and ultimately convert them into leads and sales?
  • Zero In On Your Highest Priority Outcomes: Most business leaders don’t know the purpose of their website, social media and online presence.

Is it to entertain, get new leads, close sales, inform, generate buzz, help your vendors or sales team, customer service or outreach, a combination of all of these, or something else entirely?

Before you can even think of executing an online marketing strategy, you need to know the top 1-3 outcomes you'll want to achieve from the traffic that lands on your website.

Result of Phase 1 - Ready:

By the end of Phase 1 (Ready), you’re not only going to create a cohesive picture of your ideal customer and how they’re using the Internet to find and interact with your company, but more importantly, you’re going to align your company’s business objectives and sales goals with your online presence to create a bold, powerful and strategic Internet marketing action plan.

With a deep understanding of your business and your strengths -- as well as your weaknesses -- you can now deploy a comprehensive online marketing action plan and begin implementation in Phase 2 - Execution (AKA: Aim).


 

Phase 2: Execution

==> Aim - Execute To Perfection

  • Fine-Tune Your Online Branding and Corporate Identity: Your company needs to make sure that your branding and corporate identity speak to your target audience.

Specific attention needs to be paid to the use of color, graphics, artwork, images and design, to ensure that from your business cards and letterhead, all the way through to your website, everything matches and presents a cohesive, polished and appealing corporate identity that builds off of your entire online marketing strategy to increase credibility with your current and future customers.

  • Create an Engaging, Professional and Highly Targeted Website, or Modify Existing Site: Now it's time for the real "AIM" portion of this process, or the one that most leaders skip entirely the first time around.

From fun and frivolous to professional and streamlined, the final design of your website should have the desired effect of being engaging while also encouraging your potential clients and customers to utilize your online presence for its intended purpose – whether that’s to inform, entertain, generate buzz, attract leads or convert sales.

  • Incorporate Best Practices and Functionality: I tell our clients all the time that a visually appealing website is great – but a visually appealing website that converts visitors into sales is the ultimate objective. Your website now needs to be fine-tuned for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), e-Commerce, increased conversion rates and brand affinity.

This means making sure that:

  • Your site navigation is clean and easy to use
  • Your website architecture is properly integrated for SEO
  • Keywords are being incorporated into your website’s META tags and ad copy
  • The specific actions and conversion factors that you want visitors to take are front and center
  • And finally, that your entire website and online presence are fully optimized and revolve around your most desired outcomes
  • Integrate Social Media and Web 2.0 Interaction: Putting the finishing touches on your website development means customizing your own Web 2.0 and social media strategy to align with your overall company objectives.

This also means your site must be completely user-friendly and interactive through opt-in forms, newsletters, video and other interactive elements like reviews and site comments, that will allow you to stay front and center with your target audience, and more importantly, make them feel that they have a direct line of communication with your company.

Some of the social media and Web 2.0 strategies that might be right for your company include:

  • Blogging
  • Video
  • Autoresponders/E-mail sign up forms
  • Newsletters
  • Social media integration (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, etc.)
  • Reviews
  • Comments
  • Forums
  • Q and A
  • And other social interaction strategies

If a specific medium is not right for you, don't use it just because it's popular or your competitors are using it!

Result of Phase 2 - Aim:

Put it all together and what you get is a beautiful and functional piece of art that not only looks great, but ultimately increases your bottom line and expands your company’s brand affinity and loyalty, and is something you can proudly share with your customers and vendors.

Through this systematic website design and development process, your business will now be in possession of a polished, refined and amazing end-to-end online presence that will be ready to deliver customers 24 hours a day. Now it's time to deliver traffic in Phase 3 - Results (AKA: Fire).


 

Phase 3: Results

==> Fire - Drive Traffic

With everything set up and in place, NOW is the time to drive traffic to your website, experiment with various visitor and lead generating services, and closely monitor your conversion rates in order to adjust accordingly.

Some of this will be done through "free" traffic and lead generation (sometimes known in the industry as "Inbound Marketing") with the rest coming through paid sources.

Of course, if you have a staff or hire a team to do any work for you, and even if you are slaving away doing it yourself, there is no such thing as "free" traffic because everything has a cost whether that be time or money.

Here is a rundown of some of the ways you can and should increase traffic to your website depending on your needs, goals, target market and budget:

(Click image to enlarge)

The above graphic was inspired by a post by Rand Fishkin from SEOMoz about inbound marketing.

Here's a brief rundown of each form of traffic generation -- this was not designed to be a comprehensive list:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC/CPC)
  • Display Advertising
  • Blogging
  • Social Media
  • Webinars
  • Teleseminars
  • Retargeting
  • Branding
  • Podcasting
  • Infographics
  • Video
  • Content Marketing
  • Link Building
  • E-mail
  • Press Releases
  • Affiliates/JV's
  • White Papers
  • Document/Presentation Sharing
  • Forums
  • Q & A Sites
  • Direct/Referral Traffic
  • Social Bookmarking
  • Comments/Discussions
  • Content Curation/Aggregation
  • Applications/Widgets

My advice, and what we do at Biquitous, is to focus on the top 3-5 of these mediums/sources of traffic that will yield the highest return on your investment in both time and money.

For example, if you are just starting out, simple execution of an SEO/inbound link strategy will yield incredible results for a limited budget for low/medium competition keywords.

On the flip side, if your business is more seasoned and already ranks relatively well, executing a strategy that revolves around content marketing, PPC/CPC and display advertising could be the best way to take advantage of your well known brand that wasn't converting previously, but because of the work you did in Phase 1 and 2, now will convert a higher percentage of visitors from those sources.

  • Ongoing Collaboration and Execution: This includes campaign management and monitoring of your current initiatives: i.e. creating new marketing initiatives, testing and refinement of current initiatives, continuous expansion and implementation of your initial action plan, and new strategies and campaigns when appropriate.
Result of Phase 3 - Fire:

What good is a website if nobody finds it or interacts with it?

You're now ready to start generating and driving traffic to your higher converting website, monitoring how that traffic converts and making adjustments as necessary.

Be forewarned that this entire process is an iterative one.

Therefore, you are never "finished" per se, but rather always monitoring, adjusting and creating new ways to deliver not only traffic to your website, but more importantly, ensuring that the traffic you do receive converts at a high level.


Bottom Line:

There's a saying that I think is apropos for when you've already done things backwards:

No matter how far you've traveled down the wrong path, turn around.

Most websites fail because they were created BACKWARDS.

Once you realize why your online presence is struggling and not yielding the results you intended, it's important that you fix what's wrong rather than simply giving up entirely and allocating your budget to other initiatives because you are too frustrated or don't know how to address your current problems.

By utilizing the 3-Phase Internet Marketing Execution Framework that we use at Biquitous, you can take the action necessary to create an online presence that works from the ground up the right way.

Then you can focus on the important stuff -- generating traffic, leads, and ultimately, sales.

At the end of the day, you don't care about complex strategies, processes and to-do lists.

As a business leader, you need real world results, and beyond that, a clear path to achieving those results, with a rational and strategic way of measuring them.

Your online presence should be an asset to your company and continuously generate measurable and repeatable cash flow.

You and your team will never achieve your desired outcomes if you work backwards and merely focus on traffic to the detriment of conversions.

Instead you must build a sound Internet marketing and website design strategy that was well thought out, researched, tested and implemented to perfection. ...Read More >>

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The Complete Guide To Finding and Hiring A Social Media Manager

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

 

 Read Time: (10 - 15 Minutes)

When hiring someone to be in charge of your company’s social media presence, there are things that you can teach, and things you can't.

The key is knowing the difference between the two and hiring someone that has the potential to be a rock star for your company’s entire online presence from the get-go.

In other words, don’t try and fit a square peg into a round hole.

In this post I’m going to show you the same step-by-step process we use at Biquitous to attract the very best talent that will completely eliminate your frustration with finding and hiring the right social media manager for your company.

Step 1: Start With A Top Down Approach

Before this process begins, you need to first understand the fundamental issue that speaks to the essence of not only what social media is, but the core of every single person working for your organization.

Essentially there are things that you can teach and things that you can't.

What we have learned in our time hiring, training and utilizing various social media managers is that there are traits that certain positions must have that are naturally hard-wired only within certain people.

From a fundamental level, it’s probably not wise for your introverted CFO, your tech-averse product manager, or someone on your outside sales team, to be the face of your social media presence if it’s simply not in their DNA.

So, for a social media manager you should look for someone who is:

  • Social ONLINE: sometimes very different than being social OFFLINE
  • Accountable: task driven, goal oriented, a bit OCD
  • Creative: asks thoughtful, provoking questions and always seems to be ahead of the curve in their thinking about a particular task
  • Knows the temperature of the room: understands boundaries, appropriateness, timing and sensitivity
  • Passionate: about your niche, or similar niches; excited to learn what they don’t know
  • Enjoys writing and interacting with your audience: has a dynamic online presence – aka: “voice” – and/or personality traits suited to your company’s objectives and marketplace
  • Understands social media on a deep level: has one or more social/blogging accounts personally across multiple channels
  • Learns and adapts quickly: e.g. how to use tools like HootSuite, nuances of posting to Google+, timing/frequency of interactions, etc.

You’ll hear me say this often, but it is not important that a potential hire know all the technical stuff, procedures or your company-specific nuances.

These types of “procedural” tasks can be taught.

However, what IS important and what cannot be taught, is that the candidate "get" social media, is already steeped in the culture, understands what you will want with little to no explanation and – just as importantly – has accountability in their DNA.

 Step 2: Find Your Ideal Candidate

Now that you understand what you should be looking for and how this individual will fit within your organization, where do you find these highly passionate and qualified social media gurus-in-waiting?

Here are some ways to find amazing talent in order of preference:

  • Internally: Your best candidate could be right under your nose either already working for you, or someone you know personally or professionally. Recognize your best internal candidates before looking outside your organization.
  • Evangelists: You know what the next best thing is to someone internal? Brand aficionados! The folks that comment and evangelize your products, always leave amazing comments on your blog or social media pages, or some of your best customers.

Sometimes finding a great social media manager is a matter of looking for, and reaching out to, your most passionate advocates – seriously! A great example is the Macalope.

The Macalope is a fictitious being that describes himself humorously as part man, part Mac, part antelope, and writes for Macworld as well as his own blog, while culling together a loyal following.

His humor, irreverence and sarcasm are contagious and pitch perfect for the target audience of Apple fanboys.

  • Word of Mouth/Recommendations/Contacts: Another way to find talent is to mine previous contacts of people that have impressed you in the past, solicit recommendations from colleagues you respect, and put initial feelers out to trusted individuals that can spread the word for your company.
  • Social Media: Use LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. to get the message out that you’re hiring. This is a great way to tap into your brand evangelists while also leveraging word of mouth.
  • Internships: There are always hungry, savvy people looking for internships – whether they are starting a new career, or college students looking for a summer gig or full-time internship that could become their next career. Some great sites and places to find interns are: craigslist.org, your local online college job boards, Internships.com and InternSushi.com

How to craft your social media manager position to attract the right candidate:

I want to mention that no matter what route you take, your position has to be congruent with your company’s expectations, goals, values, culture and vision.

It also has to attract the right person.

When you craft the description of the type of social media manager you’re looking for and their responsibilities – by the way, you better take at LEAST a good hour or two to do this – you also need to carefully convey the benefits to the candidate of considering your company for their next career stop.

This is critical.

If you craft a boring, staid or quickly-put-together traditional job posting, guess what you’ll attract?

Job seekers that won’t even read it and simply dump their resume in your lap.

Think about it this way:

Would you want to work for a company that seems dull or boring, and didn’t take the time to sell you on how awesome it is working with them on a daily basis?

Or perhaps how cool it is interacting with their loyal, passionate clients and customers, or their fantastic products and services?

Don’t think that quickly slapping together a job posting will bring hoards of amazing candidates to you – especially if you are a small company!

Sure Google, Facebook, Apple or other large companies can get away with that sort of thing and still attract high-end talent, but if you happen not to be a Fortune 1000 company, then you’ve got to sell the benefits of working for your organization to a hot, prospective social media rock star that doesn’t want to work for Google, Facebook or Apple!

(Larger companies can get away with a boring and corporate-speak job listing, but you can’t!)

 

Step 3: Pre-Screening Your Ideal Candidate

Now comes the “fun” part…

I say “fun” facetiously because no matter what, you’re likely going to get bombarded by a lot of pure “job” seekers and those that didn’t read the position description and are clearly neither qualified, nor appropriate for the position.

This is where a carefully implemented pre-screening process can save you countless time and resources, while delivering pre-qualified candidates that are hungry to be a part of your team.

There are 2 phases to the pre-screening process to help you weed out unqualified candidates – assuming you’ve already taken at least 1-2 hours to carefully craft an enticing and thorough social media manager description.

Phase 1: Start with your listing 

In your listing, you must do two things that will virtually eliminate 50-60% of all candidates right off the bat:

  • First, ask for a specific subject line when they apply: This is so simple and effective it’s incredible. I’ve used this tactic to weed out those that are just copying and pasting resumes and emailing them out to every listing.

What you do is ask for a specific subject line that cannot be guessed and is completely unrelated to the job opening.

One of my favorites?

I have asked candidates to put the word “Elephant” – and nothing else –in the subject of their email or else we wouldn’t even consider their application.

(Strategies like this make finding the perfect social media expert a lot easier!)

The moment you get any other subject line, press the "delete" button.

Think of it this way: Do you honestly want a social media “strategist” working for your company that didn’t take the time, and isn’t thorough enough, to at least fully READ your instructions before applying for the position?

Tip: If you use a job posting site that let’s applicants apply directly through the website, simply state in your description that an email must be sent in lieu of applying through the website. If you get applications through the website, it means they didn’t thoroughly read the instructions and you can delete their information.

Bonus Tip: Burry these instructions within your listing (preferably in the middle of a non-related paragraph of text), so it is not easily found by scanning the page!

  • Second, ask the candidate to answer 3 – 5 questions: This is another great way to weed out candidates right off the bat.

If they did happen to see your subject line requirements, another subset of candidates will drop off the hunt once they see there is actual work involved to even be considered for the position.

What types of questions do you ask? The type that let them stand out from the crowd and be expressive.

After all, you are hiring a SOCIAL media manger right?

Some examples that we’ve used:

  • In 100 words or less, tell me why you’re the social media manager we’re looking for? (Tip: Make sure you count the words! Highlight the text in Microsoft Word, click on “Tools” >> “Word Count”)
  • What 3 things are you most passionate about? Explain each.
  • Tell me about and show me something you worked on or created over the last 6 months that was difficult to accomplish that you are proud of.
  • Show me 3 social media campaigns you’ve worked on and explain what results you achieved for each – not the WORK you did, but RESULTS you achieved.
  • Assume that money is no object and you are financially independent. What does your typical day look like?
  • Explain which is most important to you: Getting it right or explaining it right? Why?
  • Give me an example of how you overcame adversity in your life.
  • Choose ONE company you respect. Explain to me why you respect them and then tell me 5 things they must do immediately to dramatically improve their social media presence.

As you can see, some of these questions are open-ended and a bit interpretive, but that’s the point.

You want to see the candidate’s thought process and how they react to strange or open-ended questions while also allowing you a chance to really get to know them on a deeper level as they explain some of their passions in life, what they value, and how they interact with the world around them.

This process will weed out those that aren’t really serious about joining your team, are to lazy to fill out the required information, or those that answered in such a way that you can immediately exclude them from future consideration.

Bonus Tip: Add one more layer to weed candidates out further by having them print, sign and scan/fax back a document to you with their signature asserting the following:

“I have read and understand the requirements for this position and certify that I meet all the requirements in the skills required section. Furthermore I agree to an in-person interview with (Company) if required before any decision is made, and will send my answers to the questions posed earlier in the position listing.”

Name _______________________    Date ____________________________

Phase 2: Next is a phone pre-screen and task list 

After the preliminary pre-screening requirements you’ve implemented, you’re likely now left with some very special people that you are interested in talking to that are skilled, passionate, detail-oriented and accountable.

Now let’s take that one step further with a preliminary phone screen and task list to make finding your ideal social media expert even easier.

Here’s what you do:

  • Set up a 30 – 60 minute phone screen with the candidate
  • Use this time to get to know them using their answers to your initial questions as a guide
  • Then ask very important details about their skill set, experience and the requirements of the position
  • Make sure you also tell them about your company, your culture and your expectations
  • If you like what you hear and the candidate seems to be a good fit for both the position (skills, passion, readiness) and your company (culture, fit, expectations), then have the candidate complete 3-5 tasks in 24 hours, for further consideration

These tasks should be a mix of challenging items that they are likely never to have done before, combined with some that they should already know how to do.

It isn't important if they complete the tasks with 100% accuracy.

Always remember that you can teach technical stuff that someone might not know, as well as your internal systems and procedures.

What IS important, however, is to see their thought process and their accountability in action.

Did they give up or keep trying? Did they admit if they couldn't figure something out? Did they find the information they needed to complete the task? Did they try their best? Was there heart, soul and polish in their work?

Finally, these tasks should also show the candidate’s ability to problem solve without being told how to do something – a very important skill to have in the rapidly changing world of social media!

Some possible tasks include:

  • Setting up a tab in Facebook to get people to take a specific action
  • Attracting 50 followers to a Twitter account within 24 hours
  • Coming up with a specific strategy for one of your company’s social media platforms to improve interaction
  • Finding and researching a specific topic that might interest your target market and distilling the information into 3 takeaways/posts they can share with your audience
  • Learning how to use a new piece of software, application or tool without showing them how, and asking for specific results – make sure they’ve never used it before!
  • Other tasks either related or completely unrelated to the position

(Tip: So as not to disturb a live website or social media account, create dummy accounts for these tasks to be completed across the networks you use.)

You must make it clear that all assigned tasks must be completed within 24 hours from when you hang up the phone with them, or 24 hours from when they received a follow-up email from you outlining the tasks.

If the candidate really didn’t want the position, isn’t willing to work hard to get it, or they could not handle the expected workload, they simply disappear and you’ll never hear from them again.

It’s better to find this out early rather than too late. In fact, if this does happen, you just saved your company from making the mistake of hiring someone that would have bailed on you when the going got tough.

On the other hand, the candidates that really want to join your team will drop everything to complete these tasks as best they can.

In the world of social media you sometimes need to accomplish tasks on the fly and nobody will be there to show you how to do them.

Therefore, it's important to hire someone that is autonomous and able to think for themselves.

It bears repeating that you aren’t looking for perfection with these tasks, but rather want to see the candidate’s thought process, problem solving skills and ability to learn something new without being taught how to do it.

Step 4: Interviewing Your Ideal Candidate

By this point you’ve successfully narrowed your search for the ideal social media manager to only the very best, brightest and hungriest candidates that see working for you as a great opportunity, not just a job.

Let’s finalize this process by interviewing your candidates in person and presenting them with a few more tasks to see what they’re made of.

There’s nothing like being on the spot and seeing how someone handles challenging tasks with potential coworkers or your potential boss breathing down your neck!

The in-person interview is used for two purposes: to make sure that the candidate is the right fit for your company in terms of personality, demeanor and culture, and that they know their stuff or at least are capable of learning what they don’t know quickly.

Tip: If your candidate works remotely, sometimes an in-person interview is not possible, or entirely necessary – especially for a social media position. Compensate by adding one more round of higher-level tasks and/or interviews to firmly lock down the right person.

Remember: Learning how to create a Google+ page, best practices for creating a Facebook tab, or the best times of the day to Tweet can be taught. What can’t are the intangibles of someone being able to interact with an audience on the fly, learn things quickly, be accountable and bring passion to whatever they do!

Here are some tasks for an in-person interview:

  • Ask the candidate to recite your unique selling proposition, company tagline, or something else very specific to your company
  • Ask the candidate for 5 ways they would improve your company’s social media presence and why
  • Have the candidate show you 5 websites and social media presences that they like and respect and explain why they like them
  • Show the candidate how to do a higher level task ONCE – how to send out a special campaign, or a specific technical procedure – then ask them to repeat the process
  • Ask the candidate to explain their philosophy on search engine optimization, social media and related topics
  • Ask the candidate to show 5 blogs that they follow and explain why the follow them
  • Have the candidate white board an entire social media marketing campaign in 5 minutes or less giving them your most important goal and outcome for the campaign

Super Bonus Tip: At the end of the day it’s all about results. So, have the candidate detail what they will accomplish for your company within the first 90 days of working for you. Not actions they will take, but RESULTS they will achieve! You can even give them a day or two to think about this, brainstorm and come up with what will be essentially, their hiring contract with you.

Step 5: Making The Hire

This final step is almost anticlimactic.

After the process you just implemented and the steps you set up to ensure you attracted the right person for your organization with the perfect skill set, your decision to hire them is the easy part.

By now you know exactly whom you want – a rock star social media manager will emerge – and all you have to do is pull the trigger.

Tip: Here’s a range of social media salaries and job titles from Onward Search to help you out.

Social media manager is the most common (and searched for) description for what you probably need, but other titles exist like “social media specialist”. You are free to decide which nomenclature fits what you are looking for and then create a position description and decide on compensation accordingly.

(See a comprehensive list of social media jobs, titles and average salaries by market from Onward Search)

Bonus Tip: Make sure you always hire on a trial basis – using the 90-day plan your candidate created for you as a framework for whether they are delivering results or not – because no matter how thorough a pre-screening and interview process is, someone might still turn out to not be the right fit for the position.

Quick Warning: If you’re thinking for one second that this process is too laborious or difficult for your company, then by all means feel free to do it your way and see how much time, money and rework it’s going to cost your organization when you have to find, hire and train someone new for the position every couple of months!

Bottom Line:

Finding and hiring an amazing social media manager isn’t as difficult as it sounds if you’ve got a sound, repeatable strategy in place to ensure that you only attract the right candidates.

By utilizing this process you will:

  • Take a top down view and deeply understand what it takes for a social media manager to be successful
  • Crystalize your company’s needs for the position as well as your core values, culture and value proposition
  • Implement multiple layers of pre-screening to attract the very best talent

By using this system you will now ensure a much higher accuracy in finding the absolute best social media managers looking for their opportunity to shine.

Always remember that there are inherent traits that you should look for and others that can be taught.

Knowing the difference is the key to locking up an amazing, talented, passionate and devoted person who will live and breathe your company’s social media presence.

If you feel I missed something I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Other valuable resources on this topic:

 ...Read More >>

Marketing Trends for Plastic Surgeons – PUMC

by Kathi Watkins @ PUMC

Marketing trends are always transitioning. While the primary tactics (think website, social media, etc.) stay, technology evolves. Patient preferences change. The bottom line is marketing is an ever-changing landscape. You have to keep up to stay competitive. Marketing Trends That...

The post Marketing Trends for Plastic Surgeons – PUMC appeared first on PUMC.

How Your Website’s Crappy Usability Is Costing You Sales

by Justin Mifsud @ Biquitous

Everyone always THINKS they know what will improve a company’s bottom line: higher search engine rankings, higher levels of website traffic, more social media outreach, more products, more blog posts and on and on.

But what if I told you that just by focusing on how users interact with and “use” your website to achieve their goals – what is often referred to as usability – by making it easier, friendlier and more intuitive, you could increase sales and conversions much faster and with less time and money spent than almost ANY other “traffic” generating initiative?

So what is “website usability” and how can it be used (no pun intended) to spruce up your company’s current website to immediately convert a higher number of visitors into sales?

I’m glad you asked…

What is Website Usability?

Website usability is defined by Jakob Nielsen as:

 “The ease with which users learn to use a web site, how efficient they are when using it, how easy it is for them to remember how to use it and how satisfied they are when they use it “

Now look at the words in bold.

Usability is concerned with users learning, their efficiency, their ability to remember how to use it if they visit the same website again, and their satisfaction when using that website.

If you read between the lines, this perfectly ties in with your website and company objectives.

A usable website that satisfies users and enables them to achieve their objectives in an efficient manner will lead to longer visits, repeat visitors, referrals from satisfied visitors, backlinks, positive reviews and higher goal conversions.

A Practical Example of Usability In the Real World

In a second, I’m going to go into a more detailed explanation with examples of good and bad website usability on various websites.

But I first wanted to show you a quick example of usability in something as simple as a mobile phone application.

The screenshots below show changes implemented on the TripAdvisor mobile application after usability testing.

 

Not only is the new design cleaner, less cluttered and simpler to understand, but more importantly, the entire experience now revolves around the user – rather than what TripAdvisor WANTED the user to do.

For instance, the company now gives more prominence to tabs that inevitably address the user's top reasons for using the app in the first place: finding hotels, restaurants and fun things to do.

The use of thumbnails now enhances the user’s experience and the selection of a tab – a hotel in this case – now shows the rating and price range, which was missing in the previous version.

Thus, with one simple look, the user can browse and select an accommodation that is to their liking, quickly and easily using a very intuitive interface.

As a result of this redesign, do you think TripAdvisor is seeing an increase in bookings and with it revenue?

Why Website Usability is Vital To Your Company's Bottom Line

On the web, the only point of contact that a company has with a potential prospect or lead is its website.

Thus, your web presence is one of the main ways – and for some companies the ONLY way – you can achieve your online goals and company objectives, be they commercial, information or otherwise.

Most websites are terribly designed, hard to use and were created to satisfy the owner or upper level management and NOT the end user.

Things like links, colors, image placement, white space and conventional usability attributes like a search box in an expected location, all contribute to the overall usability of a website.

Some quick examples you are probably familiar with include:

  • Links: Having links that indicate clickability: (i.e. blue, underlined, change color on hover and after visiting). Links must also be descriptive enough that a user would already know what they would expect to find even before clicking a link. Therefore, links such as "read more", "find now" etc. are not as usable as other more descriptive terms.
  • Search Box: Having a search box on all your website's pages ideally at the top right hand corner and consisting of a text box and a button labelled "search".
  • Fonts: Using a font that is large enough to be read, well spaced, and that contrasts sharply with its background. Additionally, it should be easy to understand what information on the page is content, in addition to different degrees of headings.

Website Usability Research

Research shows that usable websites increase user satisfaction which leads to increased time spent on the website and more leads and sales generated as a result.

MailChimp is one of the cleanest and best examples of great website usability.

 

Conversely, research conducted by Montero et.al.[1]  indicates that websites which violate usability conventions confuse users and result in a loss of revenue for the companies that operate them.

This website is an example of bad usability. It’s cluttered, complicated, and feels like “work” just to try and figure out what to do.

 

In fact, poor usability was one of the reasons many online companies went bankrupt in the infamous dot-com bust (1995-2000). Here’s an article that talks about this in more detail.

Another interesting fact stemming from research, is that the importance of website usability positively correlates with the competition of the environment it is operating in.

This means that a web site operating in the very competitive e-commerce environment is more likely to lose a potential customer due to poor usability (often to a competing web site) than a web site that operates in a less competitive environment such as Meteorology research.

It’s quite simple really.

All you have to do is put yourself in your customer’s shoes.

When you visit a website, immediate subconscious judgments are made as to the trustworthiness, authority and likelihood of doing business with the company that created it.

A usable website will enable users to achieve their goals, which in turn allows you to achieve yours – and remember, your company’s website is NOT about you, only about your customers and their needs!

By ensuring that your website is streamlined, easy to use and fits within the parameters that I outlined above in Jakob’s definition of usability, you can easily increase leads, conversions and ultimately, sales.

This in turn actively contributes towards the company achieving its own goals.

How To Make Your Website Usable

Now I will warn you ahead of time, website usability is NOT a sexy term…not even close.

In fact, when you present this to the decision-makers within your company or if you are already biased as the CEO or owner of your company, it will often fall short of “instant” gratification techniques like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM) or Social Media Marketing (SMM) – don’t let your organization fall into that trap!

As with any website optimization or traffic generating field, prioritizing your website usability issues is a must.

If potential clients and customers are leaving your website because they can’t find what they need, are confused or don’t trust your company, you’ve got bigger problems than trying to get MORE visitors to your site!

In fact, wasting time on traffic generating initiatives will prove fruitless if once that traffic arrives, they immediately leave, or worse, post something negative about your company as a result of your poor user experience.

Resources - human, financial and time-based  -- are always scarce and must be invested in a way that yields the highest Return On Investment (ROI).

Therefore, it is important to focus – at the very least – on core usability aspects that yield the highest contribution towards making your website a place people want to engage with, before you worry about bringing in more traffic.

Once those minimum areas are optimized then you can focus on other areas of usability that will yield you even more of an edge against your competition.

In their book "Prioritizing Website Usability", Nielsen and Loranger rank the highest usability problem areas as follows:

Source: Nielsen and Loranger (2006)

 

This essentially means that if you focus your efforts on just 4 areas, you will address 68% of your usability problems.

Yes, you might argue that these statistics are from 2006, but – unlike most areas in the IT world – many usability guidelines, like this one, still hold today!

The reason?

Human beings evolve at a far slower rate than technology.

Remember, usability is all about the user.

Small, crammed fonts on a low contrast background without adequate character and line spacing won’t be legible on the your 1920x1080 HD monitor!

So with that being said, let’s take a look at each of the above areas that will yield you the biggest bang for your buck:

1. Findability: refers to how easily users can locate the content that they are looking for when visiting your site.

Thus, you need to take care of the information architecture -- how your website is structured -- category names, navigation, and links, and improve them so your users can find YOUR products and services quickly and easily!

This site makes it almost impossible to find what you are looking for. Most visitors will simply give up, costing the company valuable business.

 

2. Information: refers to the text, images and other media presented on your website.

For your information to be useful, you need to ensure that your content is understood by your target users.

Users typically want to know about the company behind the website. In the case of e-commerce websites, product information and prices must be clear and visible.

This website is in clear violation of good website usability with poorly presented information, especially for an e-commerce website!

 

3. Search: refers to the search functionality within your website.

Users will typically try and use the navigation system on your website.

However, if they cannot locate what they are looking for, they will resort to your search box.

Your visitors use search engines. Therefore, they know what search functionality looks like and how it should behave.

The rule of thumb here is to make your search functionality resemble that of search engines in both user interface as well as functionality.

Search should be located at the top right hand corner, be present on all of your pages and consist of a text field and a button labelled “search”.

The text field should be wide enough to allow long search queries by the user (typically 20 characters or more) as longer search queries tend to yield better search results.

This website mislabels the search box and pretty much hides it from users! It’s almost as if they don’t want anyone to know what it is or use it.

 

4. Page Design: refers to the user interface of your website.

An interesting observation is that page design ranks 4th on this list.

This effectively means that contrary to what you may read, a nice user interface with standard-compliant code and the trendiest widgets does not necessarily mean you have a usable website.

Special attention needs to be paid towards the layout of your website, the readability of your content and the graphics you use.

The site needs to look professional in nature as this contributes towards the authority, trust and reputation of your company.

This screenshot shows an example of good and bad text choices for a black background. Obviously higher contrast (white on black) is better than low contrast for usability.

 

Bottom Line:

Usability is essential for any company that has a web presence.

If you want users to be happy, contact you, buy products from you, or stick around long enough to form a relationship with your company, then you simply cannot afford to divert all your attention to traffic building initiatives while simultaneously ignoring the importance of website usability in determining your bottom line.

SEO, SEM, social media and other traffic building initiatives bring users to your website, but it is usability that ultimately guides them to where they want to be and keeps them coming back.


[1] Montero, F., Gonzáles, P., Lozano, M. & Vanderdonckt, J., 2005. Quality models for automated evaluation of web sites usability and accessibility. In International COST294 Workshop on User Interface Quality Model. Rome, Italy, 2005

 ...Read More >>

Google Analytics for Marketers – Register Today

by Cindy Wilson @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

Tuesday, March 22, 2016 from 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM (EDT) Enterprise Center at Salem State University, Salem, MA Google Analytics is by far the most widely used web analytics tool on the planet. It’s free and packed with powerful features. Chances are, it’s running on your business website right now, quietly collecting valuable data […]

The post Google Analytics for Marketers – Register Today appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Video: 1 Single Tip to Writing Web Copy That Sells

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Video Transcript If you’re stuck for writing about your own product or service on your website, you’re not alone. We’re going to go over one simple trick to writing effective web copy that sells. When businesses get a new website they tend to focus really heavily on the design element. I come from a background […]

The post Video: 1 Single Tip to Writing Web Copy That Sells appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Finally, AdWords Can Track When You Get a Phone Call Lead

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

Google recently announced “Website Call Conversion”. It lets AdWords know when someone came to your website from one of your ads and then called you using the phone number on your website. This is very important… it means now you can … Continue reading

Why an SEO Company is Essential to taking Your Business To The Next Level!

by Ben Pearce @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

  Optimising your website for SEO is one of the most effective ways to generate more traffic and gain new […]

The post Why an SEO Company is Essential to taking Your Business To The Next Level! appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Infusionsoft Vs. Zoho

by Ben Pearce @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Finding the right Client Relationship Management (CRM) system to support your business is important. What supports your business also supports […]

The post Infusionsoft Vs. Zoho appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Google Analytics Bad Referrals – Part II

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

Earlier I posted about unscrupulous companies who send people to your website unknowingly, and this distorts your Google Analytics visitor data. So you can’t tell how many “real” visitors you are getting, where they are coming from, etc.; and without … Continue reading

Design Your Marketing Emails For Being Opened On A Smart Phone

by @ Writing Content for the Web

How to Strengthen the Design of Your Landing Pages

by Rob Toledo @ The Deep End Design

There are a lot of ideas floating around the web on how best to approach landing page design, but the best landing pages are those that put a premium on how every element on the page speaks to the viewer and interacts with the rest of the design. In essence, a landing page is a […]

The post How to Strengthen the Design of Your Landing Pages appeared first on The Deep End Design.

5 Common Résumé Mistakes Graphic Designers Make

by Shaun Pagin @ The Deep End Design

If you are working as a graphic designer then your portfolio and résumé will almost be the most important pieces of work you will ever produce. These two simple items will be what snags potential employers and helps you to build the reputation you need to start earning the best rates and have your choice […]

The post 5 Common Résumé Mistakes Graphic Designers Make appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How to Hire Top Talent, Team Players & Get World Class Interns to Work for Free (live example audio)

by ian @ good karma

In this short audio, I reveal my top secret strategy for getting world class talent to work for free. (including a live example of some of the best questions you need to ask BEFORE you end up paying more……for less) We discuss: 1. The importance of passion and purpose in your work 2. Mythical animals […]

The post How to Hire Top Talent, Team Players & Get World Class Interns to Work for Free (live example audio) appeared first on good karma.

Video: How to Use Your Website to Build Your Email List (and why you should)

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Video Transcript If you have a website and you’re not getting your prospects e-mail addresses, you’re leaving money on the table. Lots of businesses don’t actually sell anything on their website so what’s the goal in that case? What do you want them to do when they get to your site if you’re not actually […]

The post Video: How to Use Your Website to Build Your Email List (and why you should) appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Viral Marketing Strategies Class – Wednesday, Aug. 28

by STurnerCR @ Turner Marketing Consulting

I’m teaching another Viral Marketing Strategies Class next Wednesday, August 28th at the Kirkwood Training and Outreach Services Center in Marion. The class will be from 6 to 8 pm. The cost to attend is $29 and you can register on Kirkwood’s Website. The class, Viral Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses, will include an overview […]

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Internet Marketing Consultant

Holly Berkley accepts only a handful of clients each year to advise on improving web site usability, social media marketing, search engine optimization, online media buying, content development, and...

Why Your Online Reputation Matters

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

As a business owner, you have invested significant time, effort and money into growing a successful company, and there is nothing quite as exciting as talking with your customers face-to-face. Yet, you may be overlooking a lucrative way to gather feedback about your company while also enjoying the benefit of online marketing.

The post Why Your Online Reputation Matters appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

4 Steps to Creating a Winning Web Strategy

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

The post 4 Steps to Creating a Winning Web Strategy appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Carlton Smith From Flagstone Search Marketing Is Focus Of Feature Article

by carlton @ Flagstone Search Marketing

Carlton R. Smith, founder of Flagstone Search Marketing, LLC in Birmingham, Alabama, has recently been the focus of a feature article, which was published in the Birmingham Business Journal. The article, titled “How A Birmingham Exec Carved Out A Niche In The Search Engine Optimization World,” focuses on how Carlton helps companies get their businesses […]

How Manufacturing and Distributing Industries can Leverage the Power of Videos Marketing

by Peggy Owen @

Video marketing has rapidly become a popular way of driving traffic to a website and gain the attention of prospects, but manufacturing companies often struggle with the best way to incorporate video marketing into their overall industrial marketing strategies. Below, we explore some of the best and most effective ways you can make use of manufacturer video promotion […]

The post How Manufacturing and Distributing Industries can Leverage the Power of Videos Marketing appeared first on .

3 Tips for Law Firm Web Marketing Using Twitter

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Social platforms are gaining popularity among businesses as a web marketing tool. When it comes to law firm web marketing, one of the best social platforms to be used is Twitter, as it can bring a large number of potential customers. Therefore, it is extremely important for attorneys to use this platform the best they […]

The post 3 Tips for Law Firm Web Marketing Using Twitter appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Need Information About The Template Of This Web Hosting Forum

by @ Web Site Design

How To Supercharge Sales: 4 Storytelling Plots

by horizon @ Horizon Web Marketing

People love stories; here are 4 plots to help your sales           To view the entire article, click here, from MarketProfs https://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2017/32313/how-to-supercharge-sales-four-storytelling-plots-to-eliminate-buyer-skepticism-and-mistrust

The post How To Supercharge Sales: 4 Storytelling Plots appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

3 Simple Tips for Creating Content That Converts

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Content is a crucial part of any online marketing plan. It doesn’t matter where content is published – a landing page, your blog or on social media – you still need to turn those clicks into conversions. It can be more challenging than it seems, but...

Maintaining flexibility in your strategic marketing plan

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting


When running a business, every owner has some sort of strategic marketing plan in place. The only question is, is it only in the owner’s head and takes a new shape after every decent idea? Or is the plan carved in stone sitting at the corner of a desk and hasn’t been changed for 20 years? Many would agree that finding the half-way mark between those two practices would lead to the most success, but how does one decide ...

5 Things to Look For In an SEO Expert If You Haven’t Worked With One Before

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Finding an SEO expert on the web today is easy, but to make sure that you choose a professional and experienced one who can increase your online visibility it’s important to use a screening process. Not everyone who claims to be a local search engine optimization specialist is one. Here are some things to look […]

The post 5 Things to Look For In an SEO Expert If You Haven’t Worked With One Before appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Just Tried My 1St Attempt To Create A Google Snippet But Failed!

by @ All Forums

About a month ago I tried to grab the spot of one of my competitors for a definition but has clearly has failed. Also tried to insert a logo but to no avail.

 

Can anyone tell me where I am going wrong? Here's the code used (for some reason when I copied it off the web page it has been placed in a table as below but is not on the web page):

 

<h1>What is a Snagging Inspection?</h1>

 

<p class="Aligned style1"> A snagging inspection is essentially a cosmetic survey on the overall quality of finish in new builds with the aim of checking for defects (snags), working within the NHBC’s guidelines and tolerances. However, more experienced snagging inspectors, such as those employed by Site Snagging, regularly uncover more serious defects in new properties.

 

<p>

 

Any help appreciated.

 

Jged


Full code is on the opening web page www.sitesnagging.co.uk

Sites previously demoted by Penguin are getting the “penalty” lifted off of them.

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

Note: This article was written to explain the issue of Penguin no longer demoting sites. I’ve written a full article here on everything we know about Penguin and will be updating this article regularly. This is HUGE news. If you have been awaiting Penguin recovery, there’s a good chance you’ll see some improvement over the next few days. Gary Illyes just tweeting the following:   What is […]

The post Sites previously demoted by Penguin are getting the “penalty” lifted off of them. appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

Sympathy For The Web Site User

by @ Usability and Accessibility

Micro-influencer Marketing: Social Media “Little Guys” Who Make a Big Difference for Your Brand

by Titan Web Marketing Solutions @ Titan Web Marketing Solutions

Written by intern Rhiannon Gilbert We know that building your own personal brand is important, but what if you could benefit from someone else’s personal brand, too? That’s the whole idea behind influencer marketing, a tactic where companies traditionally use a popular celebrity to promote their product or brand. Of course, most brands aren’t multi-million […]

The post Micro-influencer Marketing: Social Media “Little Guys” Who Make a Big Difference for Your Brand appeared first on Titan Web Marketing Solutions.

What’s in Your Wallet?

by admin @ Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.

You need to be able to reach into your wallet and pull out a business card. These should always be available and handy so that you can get them into the hands of those you interact with on a regular basis.

The post What’s in Your Wallet? appeared first on Coastline Marketing Group, Inc..

Can You Tag A Javascript Email Link On A Webpage So Google Analytics Can Track It?

by @ Measuring Your Web Site

Patchwork Art: Learn by Fixing

by Edward Stuart @ The Deep End Design

This piece isn’t about how to “do art”. It’s also not about what type of art you should do (we’re covering painting and Graphic Art because that’s what I know something about), or where you should go to learn it. This article is about how to take what you’ve read about in articles, blogs, textbooks, […]

The post Patchwork Art: Learn by Fixing appeared first on The Deep End Design.

The Benefits of Using a Company Design Web

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

 Web marketing has gone a long way since the early days of the Internet almost three decades ago. You can say that company design web has become an art, one that requires craftsmanship and passion. If you run an online business, you have two options: build a site yourself with whatever (free) resources you find […]

The post The Benefits of Using a Company Design Web appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Local SEO Updates & Fake News | SEO 101 | Episode 271

Local SEO Updates & Fake News | SEO 101 | Episode 271

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

In the 271st Episode of SEO 101, Ross Dunn and John Carcutt discuss how Google makes more changes to local schema requirements, local box results, asks for topics for the Google Webmaster Hangouts, they answer a question from another listener, and more. This November 10 SEO 101 podcast is available now: listen or Download (right […]

The post Local SEO Updates & Fake News | SEO 101 | Episode 271 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

Citations are an important piece to successful Internet Marketing!

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

A vote of confidence on the internet is sometimes called a citation.  A citation is another place your business is found on the internet.  For example, if I sign up for YELP I have done two things.  First, I have now created visibility on another place/website that I did not have visibility before.  Secondarily, I … Continue reading Citations are an important piece to successful Internet Marketing!

The post Citations are an important piece to successful Internet Marketing! appeared first on Dragon Internet Marketing.

How Do You Build Your Website?

by @ All Forums

A topic over at Webmasterworld inspired this when it asked how folks used to build their sites back in the day and what they use now.  

 

I don't need to build websites from scratch for anyone but wonder what folks use these days who do, what with all the options out there. I've used Foundation and Bootstrap and rely on Notepad Plus for back end work when needed but for my  own stuff take the easy WordPress route.

 

Do people care to learn the basics of HTML anymore?

 

 

Intеrnеt Marketing fоr Lawyers – Advісе That Counts

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Lawyers fасе the ѕаmе сhаllеngеѕ any buѕіnеѕѕ does. In оrdеr tо gеt new buѕіnеѕѕ thеу muѕt mаrkеt thеіr ѕеrvісеѕ, i.e., аdvеrtіѕе. And lаwуеrѕ dеаl with thе ѕаmе marketing аnd advertising сhаllеngе еvеrу buѕіnеѕѕ dоеѕ – hоw tо bеаt thе соmреtіtіоn. Pluѕ lаwуеrѕ hаvе tо аѕѕumе thаt аnу Internet оr non-Internet marketing оr аdvеrtіѕіng they dо […]

The post Intеrnеt Marketing fоr Lawyers – Advісе That Counts appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

Progressive Web Apps Are - Officially - The Next Big Thang

by @ Cre8tive Tomorrow

Horizon: Online Marketing Consultant, Las Vegas, NV (702) 836-3278

Horizon: Online Marketing Consultant, Las Vegas, NV (702) 836-3278


Horizon Web Marketing

Reputable online marketing consultants and companies are hard to find. Visit our site to see why we're worth finding. Free SEO marketing assessment.

Top 10 Brands Consumers Feel Most Connected With

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Ever wonder what the top 10 consumer brands are? Read on. To view the entire article, click this link (from Ayaz Nanji of Marketing Profs): https://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2017/32530/the-10-brands-us-consumers-feel-most-intimately-connected-with

The post Top 10 Brands Consumers Feel Most Connected With appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Sales – Online Marketing Agency – View to Sales Manager

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

$50k Base + Commission – UNCAPPED.  $74,880 (2 sales a week, minimum KPI) – $149,760 (4 sales a week) OTE […]

The post Sales – Online Marketing Agency – View to Sales Manager appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Getting More Engagement on Facebook Videos

by Ingrid @ blue dress® internet marketing

Did you know that around 8 billion videos are watched via Facebook every single day? Video content is becoming an increasingly important part of your saturated internet presence. It plays a huge role in social media marketing, and Facebook is weighing their algorithm in favor of...

How Your Website’s Crappy Usability Is Costing You Sales

by Justin Mifsud @ Biquitous

Everyone always THINKS they know what will improve a company’s bottom line: higher search engine rankings, higher levels of website traffic, more social media outreach, more products, more blog posts and on and on.

But what if I told you that just by focusing on how users interact with and “use” your website to achieve their goals – what is often referred to as usability – by making it easier, friendlier and more intuitive, you could increase sales and conversions much faster and with less time and money spent than almost ANY other “traffic” generating initiative?

So what is “website usability” and how can it be used (no pun intended) to spruce up your company’s current website to immediately convert a higher number of visitors into sales?

I’m glad you asked…

What is Website Usability?

Website usability is defined by Jakob Nielsen as:

 “The ease with which users learn to use a web site, how efficient they are when using it, how easy it is for them to remember how to use it and how satisfied they are when they use it “

Now look at the words in bold.

Usability is concerned with users learning, their efficiency, their ability to remember how to use it if they visit the same website again, and their satisfaction when using that website.

If you read between the lines, this perfectly ties in with your website and company objectives.

A usable website that satisfies users and enables them to achieve their objectives in an efficient manner will lead to longer visits, repeat visitors, referrals from satisfied visitors, backlinks, positive reviews and higher goal conversions.

A Practical Example of Usability In the Real World

In a second, I’m going to go into a more detailed explanation with examples of good and bad website usability on various websites.

But I first wanted to show you a quick example of usability in something as simple as a mobile phone application.

The screenshots below show changes implemented on the TripAdvisor mobile application after usability testing.

 

Not only is the new design cleaner, less cluttered and simpler to understand, but more importantly, the entire experience now revolves around the user – rather than what TripAdvisor WANTED the user to do.

For instance, the company now gives more prominence to tabs that inevitably address the user's top reasons for using the app in the first place: finding hotels, restaurants and fun things to do.

The use of thumbnails now enhances the user’s experience and the selection of a tab – a hotel in this case – now shows the rating and price range, which was missing in the previous version.

Thus, with one simple look, the user can browse and select an accommodation that is to their liking, quickly and easily using a very intuitive interface.

As a result of this redesign, do you think TripAdvisor is seeing an increase in bookings and with it revenue?

Why Website Usability is Vital To Your Company's Bottom Line

On the web, the only point of contact that a company has with a potential prospect or lead is its website.

Thus, your web presence is one of the main ways – and for some companies the ONLY way – you can achieve your online goals and company objectives, be they commercial, information or otherwise.

Most websites are terribly designed, hard to use and were created to satisfy the owner or upper level management and NOT the end user.

Things like links, colors, image placement, white space and conventional usability attributes like a search box in an expected location, all contribute to the overall usability of a website.

Some quick examples you are probably familiar with include:

  • Links: Having links that indicate clickability: (i.e. blue, underlined, change color on hover and after visiting). Links must also be descriptive enough that a user would already know what they would expect to find even before clicking a link. Therefore, links such as "read more", "find now" etc. are not as usable as other more descriptive terms.
  • Search Box: Having a search box on all your website's pages ideally at the top right hand corner and consisting of a text box and a button labelled "search".
  • Fonts: Using a font that is large enough to be read, well spaced, and that contrasts sharply with its background. Additionally, it should be easy to understand what information on the page is content, in addition to different degrees of headings.

Website Usability Research

Research shows that usable websites increase user satisfaction which leads to increased time spent on the website and more leads and sales generated as a result.

MailChimp is one of the cleanest and best examples of great website usability.

 

Conversely, research conducted by Montero et.al.[1]  indicates that websites which violate usability conventions confuse users and result in a loss of revenue for the companies that operate them.

This website is an example of bad usability. It’s cluttered, complicated, and feels like “work” just to try and figure out what to do.

 

In fact, poor usability was one of the reasons many online companies went bankrupt in the infamous dot-com bust (1995-2000). Here’s an article that talks about this in more detail.

Another interesting fact stemming from research, is that the importance of website usability positively correlates with the competition of the environment it is operating in.

This means that a web site operating in the very competitive e-commerce environment is more likely to lose a potential customer due to poor usability (often to a competing web site) than a web site that operates in a less competitive environment such as Meteorology research.

It’s quite simple really.

All you have to do is put yourself in your customer’s shoes.

When you visit a website, immediate subconscious judgments are made as to the trustworthiness, authority and likelihood of doing business with the company that created it.

A usable website will enable users to achieve their goals, which in turn allows you to achieve yours – and remember, your company’s website is NOT about you, only about your customers and their needs!

By ensuring that your website is streamlined, easy to use and fits within the parameters that I outlined above in Jakob’s definition of usability, you can easily increase leads, conversions and ultimately, sales.

This in turn actively contributes towards the company achieving its own goals.

How To Make Your Website Usable

Now I will warn you ahead of time, website usability is NOT a sexy term…not even close.

In fact, when you present this to the decision-makers within your company or if you are already biased as the CEO or owner of your company, it will often fall short of “instant” gratification techniques like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM) or Social Media Marketing (SMM) – don’t let your organization fall into that trap!

As with any website optimization or traffic generating field, prioritizing your website usability issues is a must.

If potential clients and customers are leaving your website because they can’t find what they need, are confused or don’t trust your company, you’ve got bigger problems than trying to get MORE visitors to your site!

In fact, wasting time on traffic generating initiatives will prove fruitless if once that traffic arrives, they immediately leave, or worse, post something negative about your company as a result of your poor user experience.

Resources - human, financial and time-based  -- are always scarce and must be invested in a way that yields the highest Return On Investment (ROI).

Therefore, it is important to focus – at the very least – on core usability aspects that yield the highest contribution towards making your website a place people want to engage with, before you worry about bringing in more traffic.

Once those minimum areas are optimized then you can focus on other areas of usability that will yield you even more of an edge against your competition.

In their book "Prioritizing Website Usability", Nielsen and Loranger rank the highest usability problem areas as follows:

Source: Nielsen and Loranger (2006)

 

This essentially means that if you focus your efforts on just 4 areas, you will address 68% of your usability problems.

Yes, you might argue that these statistics are from 2006, but – unlike most areas in the IT world – many usability guidelines, like this one, still hold today!

The reason?

Human beings evolve at a far slower rate than technology.

Remember, usability is all about the user.

Small, crammed fonts on a low contrast background without adequate character and line spacing won’t be legible on the your 1920x1080 HD monitor!

So with that being said, let’s take a look at each of the above areas that will yield you the biggest bang for your buck:

1. Findability: refers to how easily users can locate the content that they are looking for when visiting your site.

Thus, you need to take care of the information architecture -- how your website is structured -- category names, navigation, and links, and improve them so your users can find YOUR products and services quickly and easily!

This site makes it almost impossible to find what you are looking for. Most visitors will simply give up, costing the company valuable business.

 

2. Information: refers to the text, images and other media presented on your website.

For your information to be useful, you need to ensure that your content is understood by your target users.

Users typically want to know about the company behind the website. In the case of e-commerce websites, product information and prices must be clear and visible.

This website is in clear violation of good website usability with poorly presented information, especially for an e-commerce website!

 

3. Search: refers to the search functionality within your website.

Users will typically try and use the navigation system on your website.

However, if they cannot locate what they are looking for, they will resort to your search box.

Your visitors use search engines. Therefore, they know what search functionality looks like and how it should behave.

The rule of thumb here is to make your search functionality resemble that of search engines in both user interface as well as functionality.

Search should be located at the top right hand corner, be present on all of your pages and consist of a text field and a button labelled “search”.

The text field should be wide enough to allow long search queries by the user (typically 20 characters or more) as longer search queries tend to yield better search results.

This website mislabels the search box and pretty much hides it from users! It’s almost as if they don’t want anyone to know what it is or use it.

 

4. Page Design: refers to the user interface of your website.

An interesting observation is that page design ranks 4th on this list.

This effectively means that contrary to what you may read, a nice user interface with standard-compliant code and the trendiest widgets does not necessarily mean you have a usable website.

Special attention needs to be paid towards the layout of your website, the readability of your content and the graphics you use.

The site needs to look professional in nature as this contributes towards the authority, trust and reputation of your company.

This screenshot shows an example of good and bad text choices for a black background. Obviously higher contrast (white on black) is better than low contrast for usability.

 

Bottom Line:

Usability is essential for any company that has a web presence.

If you want users to be happy, contact you, buy products from you, or stick around long enough to form a relationship with your company, then you simply cannot afford to divert all your attention to traffic building initiatives while simultaneously ignoring the importance of website usability in determining your bottom line.

SEO, SEM, social media and other traffic building initiatives bring users to your website, but it is usability that ultimately guides them to where they want to be and keeps them coming back.


[1] Montero, F., Gonzáles, P., Lozano, M. & Vanderdonckt, J., 2005. Quality models for automated evaluation of web sites usability and accessibility. In International COST294 Workshop on User Interface Quality Model. Rome, Italy, 2005

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Forcing Http Not Www

by @ All Forums

I have a client that is indexed under http://domain.com. I think it looks quite nice in the listings like this. However, I can also see that the domain is accessible under www.domain.com, when running some spiders over the site.

 

I've never really thought of the difference of going to other way, forcing the webserver to redirect all www requests to http://.

 

Is there any reason why I would not want to do this and force instead www in requests?

 

Glyn.

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Building Brands through Video Marketing: Ro-Flo Compressors

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Frank’s Red Hot “I Put That SH*T On Everything” Marketing Campaign Rocks

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5 Minutes)

I woke up the other day to the sound of a commercial...

It caught my attention because it had a little old lady talking about how she "puts that sh*t on everything".

The "sh*t" she was talking about is Frank's Red Hot sauce, and it not only caught my attention, but it made me laugh hysterically.

Here's a video clip of one of the ads (the radio spot is a bit different):

Here's another short spot that will lift your spirits and make you laugh:

UPDATE:

Frank's has since released additional commercials -- they are nowhere near as good as the old ones, but play off of the new love affair with dating apps and a new take on spiking the punch:

 

So let's talk about what the company did RIGHT with their offline and online marketing initiatives (as well as their website) and also look at what they did WRONG because inevitably, there are always things that could be done better or are being neglected, that a company can improve upon and that we can learn from.

And while Frank's did a lot right, they also made some key mistakes that you can and should learn from.

What Frank's Did Right:

  • Offline Marketing: The radio and television spots are memorable, short and to the point.

This is a hard feat to achieve because oftentimes we remember Super Bowl ads or other marketing initiatives not because of the product in question, but more so because of the ad. In the meantime, the entire product gets lost.

In Frank's ads however, you remember that it is hot sauce because Ethel (the old lady in the ads), tells us that she "puts that sh*t on everything..." which makes me laugh every time I hear it, read it, or type it.

You then think to yourself: "What exactly is that sh*t?" oh yeah, it's hot sauce...

  • Website: Frank's then ties in their actual website beautifully with their offline initiatives so you know you're in the right place immediately.

From Ethel greeting you with her presence, to the large bottles of hot sauce and links to recipes, videos and more, the site is fairly straightforward, interactive, fun, easy to navigate and looks great.

  • Social Media: Frank's does a great job of making their social media front and center (but missed some vital pieces -- more below!), with a Facebook fan page invitation scrawled across the top of every page of their website.

They have almost 120,000 "likes" and do a great job of interacting with, and using social media to promote their brand and endear themselves to their loyal customers and fans.

BUT, as with any marketing campaign and web presence however, there are mistakes that should be fixed immediately to help Frank's promote their brand and gain even more loyal followers, not to mention for usability and best practices.

What Frank's Did Wrong:

  • Social Media Fake-Out: When you look at Frank's homepage, you'll notice a Facebook and Twitter icon in the middle of the page.

This will take you directly to those fan pages respectively right?

Wrong...oops.

Frank's goofed big time here as they made these some sort of social media news feed about people talking about their brand on Twitter and Facebook rather than using industry standards and what people come to expect when they click on social media icons on your site that DON'T say "share".

These should instead open to their respective social media pages.

They need to fix this ASAP.

  • Social Media Fake-Out 2: On the bottom of every page, Frank's has another row of social media icons with the word "share" next to them.

Oops...same mistake as before.

These should be links to the respective social media pages that Frank's runs or doesn't...more on that in a second.

If they want to add "share" icons, that's fine, but make them clearly visible and actionable with the Facebook "Like" icon and others that are industry standards and users know well.

The worst thing you can do is confuse users with new ways of doing things that they are used to doing already unless you have a very compelling reason for changing things up -- in this case Frank's does not.

  • Abandoned/Missing Social Media: Where's the links to Frank's Twitter account and/or YouTube channel?

I did some poking around, and while Frank's has a YouTube channel, it hasn't been updated in quite some time (they are featuring only 2 videos, with no links to any of the more recent ones), and their Twitter account hasn't been updated since March of 2008! Yikes...

Frank's should have these social media platforms active and tied into their Facebook page.

This is especially important because their videos, recipes and other content are fantastic for sharing, embedding on websites and passing along and making viral.

They are losing a lot by not doing this.

  • Embedding Videos: Frank's also doesn't have code on their website to easily embed their great videos (free SEO and backlink juice!), or at least have a link to their YouTube channel. This needs to be addressed ASAP!

Bottom Line:

Frank's has a killer offline marketing campaign that ties in beautifully with their online website and social media presence.

However, as with any marketing campaign, there are some areas that need to be shored up to take advantage of all the free exposure and SEO value that Frank's is missing out on without doing any additional work!

Overall, Frank's "I put that sh*t on everything" campaign does all the right things in a memorable and clever way, and we all should be so lucky to have created such an intelligent, funny and memorable campaign that ties in with our Internet marketing efforts so effectively.

If Frank's cleans up the few issues that they have (glaring in some instances) they'll be unstoppable within their niche. ...Read More >>

Is There A Business Case For Hand Coded Websites?

by @ Web Site Design

Whats The Best Methods Of Promoting Your Website?

by @ Running a Business

Establishing a Baseline Measurement for Your SEO Project

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

“Half the money I spend on [marketing] is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” ~ John Wanamaker Marketing efforts require resources – money or time, or both – so it’s important to measure the results of your campaign to ensure that your marketing investment is a good one. While there are many […]

The post Establishing a Baseline Measurement for Your SEO Project appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Millenial Shopping Trends

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Millenials, those born between 1980 and 2000, will spend $1.4 trillion by 2020 Here is how to market to them.     To view the entire article, click this link (from Website Magazine): https://www.websitemagazine.com/blog/millennial-shopping-trends

The post Millenial Shopping Trends appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

WSI MarketBuilders Daily Internet Marketing News Feed 07/16/2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

Google’s Search Quality Guidelines: Speak Your Customers’ Language

by David Zimmerman @ Reliable Acorn, LLC

Google’s Manual Search Quality Guidelines document tells their manual review team how to determine the quality of a website. You can think of this as what Google would like their algorithm to become. If you’re…

The post Google’s Search Quality Guidelines: Speak Your Customers’ Language appeared first on Reliable Acorn, LLC.

SEO Expert Los Angeles

by Bruno Pisano @ SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

NO BOGUS PROMISES- NO SHADY MOVES LaV1 is a SEO EXPERT LOS ANGELES COMPANY THAT DELIVER GUARANTEED RESULTS and A SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS EDGE, THE RIGHT WAY   Struggling to increase your website search engine visibility? Tired of getting random traffic to your website? Have a high bounce rate and a low conversion rate? Appalled by […]

The post SEO Expert Los Angeles appeared first on SEO expert - Best search engine optimization services.

San Diego Internet Marketing Consultant | Capture more customers today!

San Diego Internet Marketing Consultant | Capture more customers today!


39 Celsius Web Marketing Consulting

San Diego Internet Marketing Consultant. Providing data driven strategies. ROI focused tactics. Experience in dozens of industries. Call: 858-324-4603

Year in Search 2016 | SEO 101

Year in Search 2016 | SEO 101

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

Starting in the New Year, we learn about how John’s work setup is evolving into a new team increasing SEO team by close to 500%. Plus Google Blog highlights The Year in Search 2016, and Google teams with Gupshup to develop voice-activated Actions for Google Home. This January 5, 2017 SEO 101 podcast is available […]

The post Year in Search 2016 | SEO 101 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

What Makes a Website Rank in 2017? SEMRush Tells All

by carlton @ Flagstone Search Marketing

Ranking first in the search engine results is like winning an Olympic gold medal. If you want to win an Olympic gold medal, it’s not enough to put in lots of effort at your chosen sport. It’s not enough to plug away at practice for hours, eat right and get plenty of sleep. What’s going […]

Cross-Device Conversion Tracking

by Hans Riemer @ Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA

If you have an AdWords account, you may have received an email from Google recently with the subject: “Cross-device conversions will be automatically included in the Conversions column.” While this capability has been available on-demand in AdWords accounts for some time, Google is planning to include this data in your AdWords report by default. So, […]

The post Cross-Device Conversion Tracking appeared first on Internet Marketing Agency Massachusetts | Online Marketing Consultants MA.

Infographic: 2017 Web Design & UX Trends to Boost Conversions

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Every year brings us a new batch of trends we can expect to see popping up on websites. But  being an agency that doesn’t necessarily hop on the trend-wagon, we sought out the ten most promising web design and user-experience trends of 2017 that can be used to actually improve conversions on any website. That’s […]

The post Infographic: 2017 Web Design & UX Trends to Boost Conversions appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Internet Marketing Consultant | Search Marketing Expert

Internet Marketing Consultant | Search Marketing Expert


Prometheus Internet Marketing

Andrew Percey helps small business owners & professionals win high-value customers online. He’s advised over 50 MIT startups and 20 established businesses.

6 Rules for Getting the Most Out of Your SEO Keywords

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

This is a guest post I wrote on XY Planning Network. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is an important element for both increasing the number and quality of visitors to your website. It should be an ongoing part of your regular marketing efforts. While SEO is getting more complicated and challenging in many respects, the […]

The post 6 Rules for Getting the Most Out of Your SEO Keywords appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Flagstone Search Marketing Founder Contributes Article To Forbes

by carlton @ Flagstone Search Marketing

Flagstone Search Marketing, LLC, a business in Birmingham, AL, is proud to announce that owner and founder Carlton R. Smith, has recently contributed an article to Forbes.com, which is titled ‘How to Pay to Play if You Want to Win Local Search Results’. Smith is a member of the Forbes Agency Council, which is an […]

How to Apply for Twitter “Verified” Status

by Brent Carnduff @ Advisor Web Marketing

If you’re a Twitter user, you’re probably already familiar with the Twitter Verification badge – the white check mark on a blue background signifying that the account represents the person or organization that it claims to represent. “Verified” status is reserved for accounts that may be of public interest – celebrities, media, politics, business, public […]

The post How to Apply for Twitter “Verified” Status appeared first on Advisor Web Marketing.

Did Buying Links Work?

by @ All Forums

Before SEO was invented, we called it "website promotion". In the year 2000, I worked full time as a user interface engineer and moonlighted at night doing search engine marketing work and my blog, and in that same year I was trained in human factors by my employer. That was when I fell in love with UX and began Holistic SEO and UX work, discussions, and promoting the union of those two opposing (especially in those days), fields.

 

Years later, as links became the method for marketing, one of my clients was paying a well known marketing company $10,000 for them to find him links that they would purchase for an additional several thousand per link. We would argue all the time about how his websites weren't user friendly, but he was paying out the whazoo for links.  While I was hired to redesign all of his sites, he refused to follow some of my recommendations. His sites were invasive and strictly marketing oriented, with no desire to actually connect with the humans coming to them. 

 

I got to thinking today about all the companies who paid enormous amounts of money to buy links, even after the crack downs against the practice.  I was never able to see how what they were doing was an investment that would benefit them for the long term. To me, the benefit was for the search engine marketing company that was hired.  

 

I was thinking today about this and wondered if the companies that broke their piggy banks to buy links are glad they did.

 

 

 

5 Unforgivable Mobile Website Design Mistakes

by Celina Conner @ The Deep End Design

Its no secret. Mobile browsing has been, and will continue to be on the rise. Smart phones and tablets have web browsers that people love to use on the go. Website layouts in mobile devices need to to accommodate ease and comfort in navigation for users. In this article, we will tackle 5 major design […]

The post 5 Unforgivable Mobile Website Design Mistakes appeared first on The Deep End Design.

WSI MarketBuilders Dailiy Internet Marketing News Feed 07/08/2011

by WSI MarketBuilders @ WSI Market Builders

Welcome to our daily Internet Marketing news feed.  Courtesy of FreshContent.net, we will bring you the latest feeds on search engine marketing and internet marketing news on a daily basis.  Click here to learn more about our Internet Marketing Solutions or …

Some Pointers For When You Build A New Website

by admin @ Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants

So you might read the title of this blog and think that I’m going to discuss a bunch of things that a website should have in this day and age to make it effective. You would be wrong in thinking that!  Instead I’m going to tell you some things to protect yourself, your company, and […]

The post Some Pointers For When You Build A New Website appeared first on Maximus Internet Marketing Consultants.

Why We Blog: 2 Reasons Blogging Drives B2B Marketing

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting

There is a large margin between producing online content and effective blogging. This gap is why so many people ask, “What purpose does blogging serve?”
Companies see the amount of time and level of work are needed to produce consistent, quality blogs and decide it’s not worth the resources. Don’t make that mistake. In a recent article for Insideview they state that companies using blogging and content marketing generate 66% more leads than companies relying on other traditional marketing strategies.
We know ...

Web Development The New Business Consultant

by @ Running a Business

Google AdWords for SaaS: What You Should Consider

by Thomas Carney @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

For software-as-a-service (SaaS) products, Google AdWords can often seem like a dream come true. You can advertise the exact keywords that your perfect customers use when they’re looking for the very solution that your software provides. You don’t even have to ask designers for ads. You can just write up some text ads, and the…

The post Google AdWords for SaaS: What You Should Consider appeared first on Return On Now.

Internet Marketing Consulting

by Samueljunghenn @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works » Internet Marketing Consulting

The post Internet Marketing Consulting appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Early thoughts on Penguin 4.0

by Marie Haynes @ Marie Haynes Consulting

Note: This article was written to explain my early thoughts on Penguin. I’ve written a full article here on everything we know about Penguin and will be updating that article regularly. Jump to updated info on whether or not the disavow tool is necessary for Penguin recovery. For even more updated news, check this new post: Sites previously demoted by Penguin are getting the “penalty” lifted off of […]

The post Early thoughts on Penguin 4.0 appeared first on Marie Haynes Consulting.

10 Lessons from Relationships to Help You Make a Stunning One-Page Website

by Tracy Vides @ The Deep End Design

We have seen our share of one-page WordPress themes and award-winning one-page websites on the internet. Almost every small business, startup or budding agency these days wants a one-page website as opposed to the traditional, hierarchically structured site that describes who you are, your team members, your solutions or services and your contact details – […]

The post 10 Lessons from Relationships to Help You Make a Stunning One-Page Website appeared first on The Deep End Design.

The Nest Thermostat: Values, Passion & Emotion -- A Branding Story

by Chris Fernandez @ Biquitous

Read Time: (5-10 Minutes)

Sometimes we forget what really matters.

We forget that the primary job of marketing is to elicit a strong reaction for our brand, products and services.

Customers don't care how cool YOU think your products are, only how cool THEY think your products are!

The landscape is littered with dinosaurs who thought their products were great (and in fact they might have been) but nobody cared because their marketing and connection with their target audience was not executed properly.

Much to my surprise, a simple thermostat (really, a thermostat!) has reminded me of exactly why we cannot forget the core tenets of marketing, branding and connecting with our customers on a deep and emotional level -- call it Marketing 101.

Let's Talk Thermostats and Internet Marketing -- No Really!

By now you've probably seen or heard about the new Nest Learning Thermostat.

It's sleek, clean, beautiful to look at, and invokes a sense of wonder at the possibilities -- if a simple thermostat can be this cool, what else in your house can be turned into a functional work of art?

But the design, function and launch strategy of the Nest "smart" thermostat -- founded by Tony Fadell, designer of the iPod -- works on many different levels that we can and should be using within our own Internet marketing and business strategies constantly.

In a great article by Wired Magazine, Fadell explains his concept for the thermostat:

Untold tons of carbon were being pumped into the air, with people losing billions of dollars in energy costs, all because there was no easy, automatic way to control the temperature. But what if you could apply all the skills and brilliance of Silicon Valley to produce a thermostat that was smart, thrifty and so delightful that saving energy was as much fun as shuffling an iTunes playlist?

From the article about how the Nest Learning Thermostat works:

The Nest is the iPod of thermostats. A simple loop of brushed stainless steel encases a chassis of reflective polymer, which encircles a crisp color digital display. Artificial intelligence figures out when to turn down the heat and when to jack up the air conditioning, so that you don’t waste money and perturb the ozone when no one is home, or when you’re asleep upstairs. You can communicate with the Nest from your smartphone, tablet or web browser.

The Most Powerful Lesson In Marketing

At the heart of Nest is a set of core values passed down by the founders that dictates not only the entire direction of product development, but also influences their entire marketing campaign and website design strategy.

What I want to do is focus on these core values for 2 important reasons:

1) The top down strategy, execution and value system has created an amazing product out of what used to be an afterthought

2) These same core values are a very important part of why Nest has so far been extremely successful in their marketing

As a result of these core values and an amazing product, Nest thermostats have sold out quickly (you now have to wait till next year to get one!) even though they were being sold for $249 a pop -- with installation costing $119!

Imagine that: Creating buzz for a product that is arguably not a necessity but a luxury.

Here's a quote from the company's own blog, by the VP of engineering Matt Rogers:

We’ve worked for a year and a half to create The Nest Learning Thermostat. It’s the culmination of all we care about -- cutting waste, creating technology that makes a difference, solving a daily frustration -- and everything we’ve learned:

  • Invest a ton in design.
  • Sweat even the smallest details.
  • Never compromise when it comes to the customer experience.
  • Push technology further than anyone thinks it will go.

Takeaway #1: Start With Your Passion - Create Amazing Products & Services

It all begins with the underlying company values, strategy and objectives handed down by leadership.

I believe it starts with an underlying passion for something -- whether to change the world, enlighten, entertain, serve, solve a problem or frustration, etc.

For example when designing the Biquitous website, I thought long and hard about what I stood for, what types of clients I wanted to work with (not the other way around!) and how I could explain what we did in an emotional way that would immediately resonate with my target client.

For me, it wasn't just about SEO, website design or Internet marketing -- it was much deeper than that.

It was about becoming true partners with the companies we worked with and creating long lasting and collaborative relationships that would last for years.

Every aspect of our Internet strategy, ad copy, videos and web design always took these values and message into account.

Nest did the same thing when creating a revolutionary thermostat that "speaks" to their target audience.

In fact, looking at the Nest thermostat, you can see the loving attention to detail and the company's core values in every square inch of the brushed metal surface and user-friendly functionality.

The simple takeaway is to create a company/product/service that you yourself would use -- and believe in -- and deliver it exactly the way you would want it delivered.

Takeaway #2: Execute That Same Vision In Your Entire Marketing Strategy

Now that you've got an amazing product that you firmly believe in, take those same core values and extend them to your marketing efforts to elicit passion and desire within your target audience.

Let's look at the bullet points from Matt Roger's blog post to bring the point home and apply them directly to your own company and specifically your online presence:

  • Invest a ton in design: For most business leaders this usually means making sure that 3 critical areas of your Internet presence are taken care of: Strategy, Execution and Results.

In other words, you need to "invest a ton in design" to ensure that your website looks fantastic, attracts your target audience, elicits passion within your customers and converts visitors into sales.

Let's not kid ourselves, the #1 reason why the Nest thermostat is sold out is because it looks cool and there's nothing like it on the market, not because of its other features, which are also fantastic.

If you get customers to inquire about or purchase your products or services because your marketing/branding/website were deemed "cool", interesting, or they addressed a direct frustration, then you've done your job.

  • Sweat even the smallest details: This is very important for Internet marketers and business leaders as a whole.

You simply cannot afford to have simple things fall through the cracks and diminish the "gut" feeling a potential client has when they visit your website because your contact form doesn't work, you have broken links, your spelling or grammar is incorrect, or some other "detail" simply wasn't done right.

Testing and refinement are CRITICAL to an overall polished and congruent experience for your target audience.

It's worth the extra money to hire a site tester, proof reader or copy editor and have someone obsess over the tiniest details that could diminish your brand in any way.

Remember this saying as you navigate these sometimes treacherous waters:

The easier something is to use, the harder it was to create.

The opposite also holds true, and people will notice.

  • Never compromise when it comes to the customer experience: This represents the biggest conundrum for marketers.

With deadlines as well as customer and management expectations, how do you balance launching a product or service with making sure that the customer experience is as polished as possible?

Part of eliciting passion when someone interacts with your product or service revolves around the little details that add up to a monumental experience.

Each incremental detail encompasses and entire perception: a slow loading web page, a difficult to use form, strange colors that don't mesh well together, etc.

Taken alone, they aren't that big of a deal, but together represent essential shortcomings in your Internet marketing strategy and tell a subtle tale about the type of company you operate  and what will be tolerated.

When someone visits your website or sees your product or service, you'll likely get only one chance to make an immediate and lasting impression.

When you see the Nest thermostat or visit the Nest website, that impression is of the highest caliber.

  • Push technology further than anyone thinks it will go: As a leader within your organization, it is your singular duty to utilize the latest technologies and best practices to not only increase your company's bottom line, but to also serve your customers in ways they've never thought possible.

Nest does this by aligning their website to your Nest thermostat so that you can check in and see how it is being used and what days you used less energy than anticipated.

In addition, Nest has an app that allows you to synch with your Nest thermostat automatically to your smartphone through Wi-Fi while also allowing you to adjust the temperature remotely.

Are you missing out on ways you can streamline your customer experience, deliver more value to your target audience and wow current and future customers by offering a product or service in ways they've rarely if ever been offered before?

What about extracting further value from what you are already doing through continuing education and studying the greats not only in your industry, but others as well?

Are you using the latest in video, social media, SEO, landing page optimization strategies or other initiatives to constantly improve your message to your target audience and always ensure you are delivering that message in ways they want to receive it?

Bottom Line:

There are so many bad examples of what NOT to do when it comes to marketing in general, and the Internet in particular, that I wanted to focus on the stuff that Nest does right so that we can apply it to our own Internet and business marketing strategies.

It starts at the top with a passion and commitment to excellence for what you do as a brand that then extends to every piece of your marketing efforts.

People know when they're being duped -- they can smell it a mile away.

When all is said and done, the purpose of marketing is to elicit passion to get your target audience to take action -- whatever action that might be.

The most successful marketing strategies align a company's internal core values with the very best marketing initiatives to bring that message to their audience in a clean, authentic and passionate way that resonates on a gut level with their customers and clients.

Who would have thought that a simple thermostat could teach us so much about how to market on the Internet? ...Read More >>

Cosmetic, Plastic Surgery Marketing - Internet, SEO, Mobile, Social Media, Web Design

Cosmetic, Plastic Surgery Marketing - Internet, SEO, Mobile, Social Media, Web Design


PUMC

Plastic, Cosmetic surgery internet marketing company - PUMC since 1974, specialists for medical marketing, website design, SEO, social media, mobile, practice development consultants for aesthetic, plastic and cosmetic surgeon, brand marketing.

If You’re Not Creating Video, Here’s How (and Why) to Start

by carlton @ Flagstone Search Marketing

It’s midnight and you’re internet surfing. How likely is it that you’ll be watching a video – or two? You’re thinking about buying a blender off eBay. Two listings are very similar – except one has a video of the blender being used, and one only has photos. How likely is it that you’ll buy […]

How to: Find Perfect Clients in Your Niche (Niche and Need)

by ian @ good karma

Q: What is the easiest way to get new clients? It’s set up’s silly! What are set ups exactly? Niche and need. Businesses, clients and customers who are in your niche, and who have a need. More broadly, it’s the simple, step by step process of identifying your ideal audience, discovering what they need, lack […]

The post How to: Find Perfect Clients in Your Niche (Niche and Need) appeared first on good karma.

The U.s. Web Design Standards For Gov Sites

by @ Usability and Accessibility

Car Rental Script / Web Program

by @ Site Planning and Preparation

Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Marketing Consultant

Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Marketing Consultant


Quick Sprout

I started out in my career as a marketing consultant, and I was so good at driving traffic to websites that I was able to grow my agency to millions of dollars

AdWords Stops Showing Ads in Right Column

by joeseidler @ Seidler Digital Marketing Consultant – San Francisco Bay Area

Surprise! Google, with almost no fanfare, decided to stop showing any AdWords ads on the right side of the search engine results page. Now ads are only on the top left (up to 4) and bottom left of the page. … Continue reading

3 Keys to B2B Marketing Success in Chicago and Milwaukee

by Nathan Misirian @ Autumn Consulting

Never underestimate the power of knowing your audience.
Understanding our clients is transformative for our Milwaukee and Chicago businesses. As the owner and operator of a digital marketing firm, I regularly meet face-to-face with my clients to ensure I am staying in touch with their needs. By meeting regularly, I learn first hand of their growing needs that can be addressed by digital marketing trends. Implementing strategies to capitalize on these trends quickly and efficiently, is the difference between effective ...

5 Web Design Mistakes That Send Users Running

by Gerry Arcari @ The Deep End Design

It’s no wonder that developers choose different paths when building websites given the sheer scale of the web world. That doesn’t mean that we should all stick to ‘common user practices’ to create great, consistent sites. Here, we explore five web design mistakes that send visitors reaching for the back button. Traffic is hard to […]

The post 5 Web Design Mistakes That Send Users Running appeared first on The Deep End Design.

5 Interactions to Gauge the Effectiveness of Your Content Marketing Campaign

by Anna Johansson @ The Deep End Design

Content marketing is one of the most effective forms of online marketing, but it doesn’t achieve that status by default. Starting a content marketing campaign is a bit like a tree falling in the woods with nobody around to hear it; only when you start gaining active participation does it begin to take on meaning. […]

The post 5 Interactions to Gauge the Effectiveness of Your Content Marketing Campaign appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Is Your Website Working Against Your Marketing? 5 Tips to Fix It

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

If you’re the marketing manager responsible for your company’s website, I’ll go out on a limb and say you have some issues with it. You’re doing everything right, but for one reason or another, your website is the last remaining bastion from “the old days” of your company. So what do you do when your […]

The post Is Your Website Working Against Your Marketing? 5 Tips to Fix It appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Infographic: HTML5: Past, Present & Future

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

As web designers, we know that HTML5 is quickly becoming the new standard for cutting-edge web design. But a lot of us, especially design-only designers may not be fully aware of what HTML5 is truly capable of, as well as what its limitations are. Dotcominfoway has just published this handy infographic explaining the ins and […]

The post Infographic: HTML5: Past, Present & Future appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How To Get Real Followers On Twitter Without Doing Paid Ads

by Tricia Canlas @ Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Have you ever wanted to organically grow your Twitter followers without paying for any ads? Been seeing your competitors profile […]

The post How To Get Real Followers On Twitter Without Doing Paid Ads appeared first on Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works.

Which Content Nets Social Traffic & Links – Episode 272

Which Content Nets Social Traffic & Links – Episode 272

by Scott Van Achte @ StepForth Web Marketing Inc.

In this 272nd episode of SEO 101, Ross & John discuss a BuzzSumo study on content and SEO that reveals that 50% of content gets less than 8 shares (across all social),75% of content generates ZERO links. John and Ross discuss how few links make a large difference in some very high volume terms. Quality […]

The post Which Content Nets Social Traffic & Links – Episode 272 appeared first on StepForth Web Marketing Inc..

Important Industrial Website Design Tips for Manufacturing Companies

by Peggy Owen @

As search engines continually release new algorithms, it has become increasingly important for companies to ensure that their website is able to keep up with emerging trends. Redesigning a website can be time-consuming and labor-intensive, particularly within the industrial and manufacturing sectors, where resources are often limited. It’s no wonder many companies view industrial website […]

The post Important Industrial Website Design Tips for Manufacturing Companies appeared first on .

Marketing Tips and the Election

by Tina Reed Johnson @ Tina Reed Johnson

Making Impressions – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Marketing yourself as a political candidate is a lot like marketing your business.  Impressions are everything.  You may only have one chance to grab one’s attention so you want to make it count.  Consider these marketing tips! Marketing Tips – #1 Good, Bad or Ugly, […]

The post Marketing Tips and the Election appeared first on Tina Reed Johnson.

What Do You Call Your Website In Correspondence?

by @ Running a Business

How to Use Video to Strengthen Your Brand: 6 Ways for Better Branding

by Maciej Fita @

  We’ve all seen how rapidly the use of video is growing. The number of videos created for marketing or brand-building purposes increases in huge strides every day, and you don’t want your brand to be left behind.   There are hundreds of ways to use video, but using video in these 6 ways will
Read more

How to Succeed as a Designer at a New Job, With Clients, or With a Team

by Mark Lewis @ The Deep End Design

When interviewing applicants for graphic art positions on our team, one of the questions I always ask is: “What would you do if you strongly believed you had a great idea for the logo of the company that just hired you?  Let’s say the company is National Geographic.  How would you get them or what […]

The post How to Succeed as a Designer at a New Job, With Clients, or With a Team appeared first on The Deep End Design.

3 Obstacles to a More Responsive Web Design

by Aileen Galsim @ The Deep End Design

With the rise in popularity of mobile, it’s no longer an option to consider how a website will be experienced on a smaller screen – it’s a necessity. Increasingly, designers are turning to responsive web design as the answer. After all, what could be more convenient for users than simply having a site adapt to […]

The post 3 Obstacles to a More Responsive Web Design appeared first on The Deep End Design.

How to Minimize Risk Of a Negative SEO Attack on Your Website

by Brenda Berg @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

No matter whether your website represents a business, a startup, a blog, an informative page, or anything else, SEO is the air that keeps your website stay afloat. The search engine giants are constantly updated and redefining their guidelines to state what’s important when it comes to reaching the top of the results pages. There…

The post How to Minimize Risk Of a Negative SEO Attack on Your Website appeared first on Return On Now.

What I Learned from Google’s Mobile Sites Certification

by David Zimmerman @ Reliable Acorn, LLC

It’s been on my to-do list for a while: complete Google’s Mobile Sites certification. No, this does not mean I’m expanding Reliable Acorn into a web development company. My hope: that I can better advise…

The post What I Learned from Google’s Mobile Sites Certification appeared first on Reliable Acorn, LLC.

9 Ways To Improve Your Creativity

by Roy Nakamura @ Horizon Web Marketing

Creativity can give you a competitive advantage and lead to greater profitability. Here are 9 ways to Improve Your Creativity. To view the entire article, click this link (from Refresh Leadership): http://www.refreshleadership.com/index.php/2017/07/infographic-creative/

The post 9 Ways To Improve Your Creativity appeared first on Horizon Web Marketing.

Infographic: Choosing the Right CMS For Your Project

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

As a web designer, I don’t know how we ever got anything done in the days before content management systems. Updating content was a cumbersome process, and half of the job description for web designers was doing just that for their clients. Now we live in a world where we can design a fantastic site […]

The post Infographic: Choosing the Right CMS For Your Project appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Infographic: Responsive Web Design

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

With mobile browsing becoming more and more popular every day, a lot of web designers are shifting their efforts to responsive website design. While it is a term we have been hearing for quite some time, many designers may not be exactly sure about what a responsive website is. In essence, a responsive website adapts […]

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Web Design Elements That Help Drive Traffic for B2B

by Evans Walsh @ Return On Now

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

For improving traffic to your B2B website, there are various digital marketing methods available that can drive results. Some of the most common tactics worth mentioning methods include email campaigns, direct mailers, and social media marketing. If you are not receiving enough leads, here are some critical elements that you can affect right on the…

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Infographic: Is it Ever Ok to Use the Desktop Hamburger Icon?

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

Like it or not, the hamburger (or menu) icon is quickly becoming one of web design’s most ubiquitous trends. Since it has been so widely used over the past five years on mobile sites, it only makes sense that some web designers are testing the limits of how and when it can be used. With […]

The post Infographic: Is it Ever Ok to Use the Desktop Hamburger Icon? appeared first on The Deep End Design.

Evolving Internet Technology Boosts Online Reputation Significance

by Kathi Watkins @ PUMC

Our recent webinar series about the evolving internet technology was a hit. You need to be aware of the statistics and tips to plan your marketing strategy. If you missed the webinars, below is a recap of each of the...

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Why Your Business Needs a Web Consultant

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Among the marketing strategies commonly used by businesses nowadays, web marketing is one of the most important one. More and more customers are now looking for businesses online, and online shopping is continuously gaining popularity all around the world. However, web marketing can be a tedious task. As a business owner, you might find it […]

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Website Slipped In Google

by @ Search Engine Optimization

New Website With Different Topic Blogs: How To Organize?

by @ Blogs, RSS and Syndication

What Are The Qualities That Web Developers Should Have?

by @ Web Site Programming

Infographic: 2016 Web Design Trends to Boost Conversions

by Wes McDowell @ The Deep End Design

2016 Web Design Trends to Boost Conversions With every new year, we eagerly anticipate the newest trends that emerge in web design. Most of these trends simply have to do with whichever visual style happens to be the most en vogue, but in this case, we at The Deep End have hand-picked the ones we […]

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Internet Marketing Consulting Sydney – Online Marketing Consultant

Internet Marketing Consulting Sydney – Online Marketing Consultant


Think Big Online Marketing Company - Internet Marketing That Works

Renowned Internet Marketing Expert – Samuel Junghenn offering high value Online Marketing consulting services in Sydney. Give us a call now on 02 9460 0581!

Jérôme Lacoste - Webmarketing Consultant at JLWS

Jérôme Lacoste - Webmarketing Consultant at JLWS


Jérôme Lacoste - JLWS | Consultant and Trainer in Webmarketing

Founder of JLWS : Jérôme Lacoste Web Services - Webmarketing Consultant and Trainer |Founder of The Blog TheNextools.com

A Few Patients Control Your Online Reviews

by Kathi Watkins @ PUMC

According to Software Advice, 77% of potential patients read reviews as the first step in finding a doctor. People look at your reviews before they visit your website. Before they see your social media. And before they call your office....

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SEO – Search Engine Optimization in Chicago IL using both the English & Spanish languages can be VERY effective!

by Dragon @ Dragon Internet Marketing

According to the United States Census Bureau – http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/17/1714000.html as of 2010 the hispanic population in Chicago is 28.9%.  Also according to http://coloquio.com/english/hcities.html Coloquio – Chicago is the 5th largest hispanic market.  Therefore when marketing yourself online through SEO – search engine optimization in Chicago, Illinois you should make sure you use both the English & Spanish languages.  I work … Continue reading SEO – Search Engine Optimization in Chicago IL using both the English & Spanish languages can be VERY effective!

The post SEO – Search Engine Optimization in Chicago IL using both the English & Spanish languages can be VERY effective! appeared first on Dragon Internet Marketing.

7 Online Marketing Strategy Mistakes You Should Avoid

by Bruno Pisano @ Web Marketing Consultant – SEO expert – Best search engine optimization services

Taking the time to create a detailed marketing strategy before beginning to promote your brand online will help you convey a more powerful message and get higher conversion rates. What’s more, it will give you a sense of direction and make it easier for you to track your progress. When defining your marketing strategy plan, […]

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