Category Archives: Other

The Top Three FREE Online Marketing Strategies You Should Be Using

6 Jun 2014 | written by Elizabeth Baier for the local internet marketing, online marketing section(s)

You don’t need to assume that marketing your company takes a lot of money. Thanks to the Internet, there are tons of free tips out there to help you. With minimal research, you can implement several of these options on your own. There are many merits to hiring a company to handle your overall SEO and PPC campaigns, but there are a few basic things you can take care of yourself before passing things off to the big guys.

Evaluate Your Website

You should look over your website every few months at the least to make sure things are running smoothly and you are getting the traffic that you want. Things like slow load times, typos throughout content, old and outdated content, etc. will prevent the user from having an enjoyable experience and could cost you thousands of dollars in revenue. There are many “check lists” out there that can help you identify some common problems, but here is a condensed list of the things we think are most important.

Check to see if you have a Sitemap.

Think of your Sitemap as a menu. At a restaurant, you expect to see a menu before you order, right? A Sitemap is a “menu” for search engine crawlers—the crawler can see everything you have (pages, links, and videos) and collects the information for future searches. Google, in particular, emphasizes the importance of this feature. Here is a simple tutorial to find out if your webmaster published a Sitemap, and if you find out you don’t have one, do a simple search like, “How to install a Sitemap” and you’ll get tons of results.

Verify that you have Title Tags.

Every page on your website should have a Title Tag. If you are unfamiliar, this is the tagline or the text that shows on the search engine results page. (See picture below.)

The Title Tag will also show up if you hover over the page/tab you’re in. As you can see, this effectively names your page and allows search engines to recognize what the page is about.

Your Title Tag MUST match what you actually talk about on the page. You will be penalized if you use hot topics to start ranking for something but it doesn’t match what is on your site. Hummingbird is all about giving the searcher what (s)he really wants and if you’re trying to trick people, that won’t fly.

Check for duplicate content.

You may have created your website in a hurry or didn’t have time to write unique content for every page. That would’ve been fine a few years ago, but these days won’t do you any good. Duplicate content throughout your site can hurt you in search engine rankings. There are many online tools that can help you find duplicate content and when you have more time, you can replace it with new, fresh content.

Get on the Social Media Train

These days you need more publicity than your website offers you. You need to board the social media train. This is a (relatively) easy and FREE tool that you have been missing out on. Choose the outlets where your customers are. For example, if you own a boutique, Instagram is probably one of your best tools. You can take pictures of your shop, your customers, new arrivals, and advertise your promotions for free! If you offer contactor services, you may want to put your information on some local directories instead of the Instagram route.

Making accounts, creating pages, followed by engaging your crowd on social media opens so many doors for your business. You seem more approachable, more personable, and clients can easily recommend you. You can promote sales, coupons, and new blog posts easily and for free.

There aren’t any good excuses if you aren’t on social already because it is very easy. Here are some instructions for popular platforms:

Feel free to branch out from the typical sites if you work in a niche industry or you feel other sites would best serve your clients.

Use (Positive) Testimonials for All They Are Worth

Most people say the highest compliment is a referral. Whether it’s by word of mouth or over social media, client opinions matter and you can use this to power your marketing. Many consumers conduct research before they hire someone for a job. The best way you can answer immediate questions about your services is through your website content, but the best way you can answer questions about quality of work and follow-through is by displaying testimonials (or case studies) proudly because:

Make sure your new visitors know where they can go to view testimonials or get more information from your previous clients. Publicize testimonials tactfully on your social media outlets and websites. Used correctly, testimonials will prove to be one of your best marketing tactics—and it’s free!

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Google Announces Algorithm Update: Panda 4.0

21 May 2014 | written by Mei Lam for the Google News, SEO section(s)

Google recently announced a new update to the Panda algorithm which is being deemed, Panda 4.0. Here is some useful information about algorithm updates, the Panda update and how it will affect you.

What are algorithm updates?

Google as well as other search engines continually update their search algorithms to improve search experience and provide quality results. These updates are designed to limit the ranking ability of sites that Google may deem as low quality. There are believed to be more than 200 factors that play into the algorithm and helps decide the rank of a website. These can include signals related to links, on-site content, website structure, page load time, user experience, brand mentions and much more. As Google gathers and analyzes data they will make updates to limit what they deem as lower quality sites from ranking. The efforts of SEO are designed to optimize sites for the many signals that help Google define a quality site.

It is important to keep in mind that Google isn’t perfect; there is always a level of collateral damage when updates are pushed out. Quality sites can and have lost rank due to these updates. No site is immune to updates. The intent is to work to stay within Google guidelines and adjust strategies as needed when the search landscape changes due to updates.

Read On

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Three Niche Marketing Tactics You Should Use to Gain More Customers

20 May 2014 | written by Elizabeth Baier for the internet marketing, local internet marketing, online marketing section(s)

Three-Niche-Marketing-Tactics-You-Should-Use-to-Gain-More-Customers

If you haven’t already begun to explore the realm of niche marketing, it is time to start. Niche marketing is more profitable than broader tactics because you are targeting a narrow group—a group that truly wants what you are offering.

When people are looking for your services or answers to common questions related to your industry, they want answers quickly and you have the opportunity to be the number one source of information.

Google is holding strong as the search engine marketing share leader with more than 65% of searchers using a Google site to find information online. Google’s large algorithm (“search recipe”) update released in fall 2013 focused on understanding the context of the search and then giving the best results—what the user really wants to know a.k.a. niche information.

This change accommodates long-tail, question-like queries, which most searchers use in their day-to-day life. With this change, there is a less attention on anchor text or targeted keywords and more attention on the actual content on your site and the information it offers. Read On

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How to Use Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Promote Your Business

How to Use Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Promote Your Business

Word of mouth marketing is one of the most powerful sources of marketing out there. This is because we generally trust the word of our family, friends, colleges, and even random voices on the Internet over a paid advertisement. While it may be difficult, as an advertiser, to get people to tell there friends and family about your products and/or services, it’s not impossible. In fact, the Internet has provided a few ways to make word-of-mouth marketing easier. Here are a few ways to promote your business through word-of-mouth marketing via the Internet.

Read On

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10 Tools to Coordinate Your Online Marketing Efforts

5 May 2014 | written by Samantha Karren for the internet marketing, online marketing, SEO, Social Networking, website promotion section(s)

10 Tools to Coordinate Your Online Marketing Efforts

Your marketing strategy should be two-fold: bringing in new traffic and encouraging return customers. The tricky part is you need different tools to focus on new customers and loyal customers. The good news is these tools can overlap and are easy to manage with the help of online marketing experts. To start, ask yourself these questions:

  • Which is my priority, new customers or return customers?
  • What is my monthly budget to invest in SEO, SEM, PPC, and online marketing tools?
  • How many different marketing tools can I utilize through a single online marketing company?

Read On

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Should You Invest in New Technology for Your Business?

1 May 2014 | written by Samantha Karren for the Mobile Web, PPC, SEO, Small Business Tips, Social Networking section(s)

SHOULD YOU INVEST IN NEW MARKETING TECHNOLOGY?

No, we’re not talking about investing in the stock market. We’re talking about new marketing technology that can help your business bring in more customers and ultimately increase your bottom line. Sound like the answer is an obvious “Yes!”? Before you jump on the wagon of the latest and trendiest technology, make sure it’s the right tool for your business. Here are some marketing technologies that will actually help you see an increase in traffic and revenue. Read On

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Learn to Embrace Matt Cutts’ SEO Ideologies and Live Happily Ever After

25 Apr 2014 | written by Samantha Karren for the Fun Stuff, internet marketing, online marketing, SEO section(s)

How to Win the Heart of Google

Is Matt Cutts your ally or foe? Do you feel like Google is constantly hunting your site for spammy practices? If you want to ride into the horizon on a white horse (and maybe even get the girl), then it’s time to make Google your friend. Here’s how.

Matt Cutts Inigo Montoya

Are You the Villain?

Matt is not exactly a vigilante, but he did set out (like so many others) to right a wrong with nothing but a healthy dose of righteous indignation and his weapon of choice (most prefer a sword). One way to tell whether you are on the good side of white-hat SEO or not is to put yourself into this fairytale. Read On

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Everything You Need to Know About Redirects

21 Apr 2014 | written by Alex Harisay for the Other, SEO section(s)

everything you need to know about redirects

Redirects are just one small slice of the SEO pie, but they can be a fairly important slice. It’s one small change that could do a lot for the user’s experience and your ranking.

One note up front: this article will only cover 301 redirects (that, is “permanently moved”) because they’re the most commonly used. Additionally, it will only make use of .htaccess on an Apache server and a few alternative methods. It will not cover setting up redirects on any version of IIS servers since they’re far less popular and a little too complicated for an article of this scope. If you’re not sure what kind of server your site is on, plug the URL into builtwith.com. All your server information should be at the top of the results page. If it says Apache, you’re good to go, so read on! Read On

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Why Your Business Should Consider Using YouTube

YouTube

What do Red Bull, PlayStation, and Apple have in common?

The answer may surprise you: they are in the top five most popular consumer brands on YouTube as of October 2013. You may think of YouTube as just some website your kids use to show you funny videos, or if you’re like me, you use it to watch endless clips of Sophia Grace and Rosie from Ellen, but this social media site is proving to be very important for brands trying to establish a reputation.

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Google Takes Action on Guest Blogging Communities

20 Mar 2014 | written by Charlie Gray for the internet marketing, local internet marketing, Local Maps, online marketing, OrangeSoda News, PPC, SEO, Small Business Tips section(s)

BlogIllustrations3

Yesterday, Google announced that they took action on a guest blogging community. This strategy has been viewed as a white-hat tactic for years and is now being deemed as spammy by Google’s Webspam team. OrangeSoda has not leveraged this network. While we have leveraged guest blog posting strategies, we have stayed within Google Guidelines. As always, we adjust all of our marketing strategies to enhance performance and limit risk.

Read On

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