Learning to Choose Your Own Keywords

Like I had said in my last post, I wanted to go a little more in depth on how you choose keywords for your online campaign that will give you the best ROI with Search Engine Optimization. There can be a lot of instances where companies will promise you the world, and it is my goal with this post to bring us back to the ground and get a more realistic expectation.

I used a plumber as an example in my last post so lets continue with that. If we do a quick Google search for “plumber,” here are the results that we get:

 

Over 49 million results have been found. I don’t know about you, but when I look at that, I think that sounds like hard work to rank if you are a plumber! Now you might ask if it is even possible to rank for this search term on Google. The answer is yes, but the budget and time it would take to get it all done is insurmountable! The majority of local and small businesses aren’t going to want to rank for this term anyway because they aren’t trying to reach everyone across the country.

One of the easiest and best ways to decide what kind of keyword you want is to go local. So moving back to our example, we would much rather try and rank for “San Francisco plumber” than just “plumber,” since that is your geographic location and is where you provide your services.  This would be much easier and more beneficial for you than trying to rank nationally.  We even could be more specific and try to rank for “San Francisco plumber clog removal.”

It can sometimes seem strange to business owners to be so small and specific online. You would think that going for a much broader audience is going to get you more people to your website and increase sales, but in all actuality it’s actually quite the opposite.  In a recent study sponsored by Google it states: “Some 84 percent said they use the web to search for information on products and services before making purchases.” Source

The more specific and localized you are, the more likely the searcher is going to buy or use your services, since you are going to be exactly what they are looking for. There are a lot of factors that go into you being one the top results for a specific keyword, but making sure that you target the right ones will make all the difference in the world.

Before you start any online campaign be sure you feel confident about the keywords you are going to be using. I can’t stress this enough.  Aim high, but also be realistic. Talk with your Account Manager and see what suggestions they have. They have vast resources of knowledge and data that can help you determine what would be the best for your online campaign.

As always, we here at Boostability are here to help and assist you with any questions or concerns that you have.  Think of this as a small but major step in increasing your visibility online.  It can make or break your campaign. Don’t treat it as something with little significance to your overall goals.

Source: http://www.boostability.com/blog/learning-to-choose-your-own-keywords/

“Marketing in the Age of Google” Book Review

I recently finished a book called Marketing in the Age of Google (2010)written by a former Google employee, Vanessa Fox.  What I want to do is give you a bit of my perspective on this book as an SEO’er, and let you know if it is worth your time to read it as a business owner. I will address a few of the main points Fox explores in the book and then give you some of my own ideas.

I originally found this book by doing a search on Amazon.com for SEO books. I was fairly new in the SEO industry, and was wanting to find resources that could help me better understand how SEO worked. I had yet to see if SEO really was something that would interest me as a career, and I hoped this book would help me decide.

Fox, as I said earlier, worked for Google and was instrumental in building Google Webmaster Central. She spoke with thousands of different companies during her time there, and helped them understand how to implement a business strategy in the age of search  engines. She states, “To [business owners], Google was somewhat of a black box. They knew that organic search (the unpaid result set) was important, but they had no idea how to use search data and customer acquisition from organic search in their business processes” (Fox, XIII).

She set out to write a book that would be a resource for business owners to be able to alter their business plans. Also taking into account new businesses, she wrote to help businesses add internet search as a main factor in how to gain new customers. She begins by talking about the history of the internet, and why search engines were built, giving any business owner a set foundation of how the internet works. She then progresses into how you can build your site and content in a way that will reach your target market and customer base.  It is all very simply explained and gives you confidence that you can simply and effectively optimize your website.

The thing I appreciated the most about this book looking at it as a business owner/new SEO’er was Fox’s voice. Her use of terminology and jargon is easy to understand, and is not riddled with confusing terms and theories that just confuse more than they help. Fox is very good at taking things in a constant pace that excites you and motivates you to move on to the next step.

I was rather impressed with this book and would highly recommend it to any business owner who is wanting to know how to expand their business online, or even start online. With the way our economy is moving, people are searching more and more online to find products and services. Marketing in the Age of Google is a great road map for you as a business owner to understand how to create an online presence, and have a company such as Boostability help you to accomplish your goals.

Source: http://www.boostability.com/blog/marketing-in-the-age-of-google-book-review/

So How Does Search Work?

A question that I believe a lot of local and small business owners ask themselves is “How does search work?”. When it comes to being found on a search engine, there are a lot of factors and equations that work together to pull up different search results. This video is a year old, but I still think that it’s informative enough to be relevant. In this video a Google employee, Matt Cutts, explains how Google gathers information from all over the internet.

That really sums up a lot of how it all works. Knowing exactly how search works is just the first step for any company wanting to be found online. The next step is to decide what you are wanting to show up for. This involves putting yourself into the shoes of your customer and how they would search to find your business. Typically they are not going to search by your company name if they don’t know you, so try to think of specific keywords that match what services you offer. P.S. I’ve also posted on Learning to Choose Your Own Keywords.

Once you have determined your keywords, it’s time to make sure that your website has that keyword on it. Mike Romrell has a great post that talks about Keyword Density that I highly recommend you read. In his post he talks about the density on your page, but one of the biggest and probably easiest problems I notice with websites is that they do not have keyword rich content in their Meta Title and Description. This is vital for anyone wanting to rank on search engines.

A future customer is not going to be interested in your website at all if it is titled “Home Page Template” when they are actually looking for a “Plumber in San Francisco.” Changing your Meta Title to “Your Local Professional Plumber in San Francisco” is not only going to increase your ranking for the that keyword, but also improve your click through rate (CTR). CTR is the amount of times people actually click to your website after seeing it.

If you of course are needing help to make these changes onto your website, contact us and we will be happy to help you come up with a well written Meta Title and Description for your site.

These small and simple changes will make a big impact in your online campaign. Best to get started on this now rather than later!

Source: http://www.boostability.com/blog/so-how-does-search-work/

Are Google+ and +1 the Same Thing?

Just in the last few days we have posted a small introduction to Google+ and Google +1.  Two brand new items that are going to have a major impact on search rankings and what we are going to be finding online.  I have been discussing each of these new products with a few friends and a lot of them seem to be confusing one for the other, or thinking that they are the same product.  Let me help all of us and explain the differences between the two. They coincide, but are rather different.

First I’ll start off with Google +1, since I just recently posted information about it.  Google has decided to bring in a social factor into your search. This is +1. Each time that you search, your results will have the +1 button to the side of them. Just like Facebook, you can let your friends and family know what websites you “like.” Google will keep a tab of how many +1’s have been put on each site, and if you and a bunch of friends all like a specific site, it will rank higher for you than other sites you don’t have interest in.

As a business owner, you more than likely will want to know how this is affecting your search volume and conversions. What’s great is that Google is completely aware of this and has already implemented +1 into their webmaster tools. Here is the official blog post about Google +1 in analytics. It really is exciting to take a look and see the difference adding this small feature to your site can do. It is all about building trust online and Google +1 is a great way to add trust for your business/brand.

Google+ is Google’s direct competition to Facebook. It’s a brand new social media platform for you to stay in touch with everyone you know. David DeMille wrote a great post about the amazing things that are about to come for local businesses to promote their companies and obtain a better online strategy. Google+ is in a very infant stage, but is already gaining a following that grows more and more each day. In my honest opinion it isn’t as great as Facebook yet, but it has the potential to be just as good, if not better. If you are someone who enjoys the social aspect of the internet, I highly suggest you checking it out. Here is where you can sign up for Google + and play around with it  yourself.

I hope this gives you a better definition of each of these new features and I highly suggest you starting now to get +1 put onto your website in order to build up your authority and validity online.

Source: http://www.boostability.com/blog/are-google-and-1-the-same-thing/

Google Introduces +1 To Its Organic Search

Here is another Blog post I wrote

The internet is changing my friends. It’s evolving and becoming more and more personal. As we are searching online we want to have that trust and security in knowing that what we are looking for is valid as well as honest. Google has understood this for years and now has brought in a new social application into the mix of its search called Google +1. Here is a video from Google that gives you a good introduction to what this is:

Hopefully that helped you understand a little more of what +1 is all about. I’m sure that many of you who use Facebook understand exactly how this works. It’s just like the “like” button that you use when you like someone’s post. Now this is actually a part of your search in Google! It’s all about making the internet personal and this is a huge step in that direction.

So the first thing that you need to be sure of to use +1 is to be logged into your Google account. This can be your Gmail, Webmasters, or any other Google program. Now that Google knows who you are they will start gathering data from all of your friends in your email, Google +, etc and see what websites they added a “+1” to. Like in the video, if you are looking for a great chocolate chip cookie recipe, and your friend Sarah had put a “+1” next to her favorite kind then that is more than likely going to be the first result in your search.

If you then “+1” that same site it’s going to factor into all of your friend searches as well. Now this is something to consider for you as a business owner. Make sure that when customers come to your site, you have the content they are looking for, as well as a format that is easy to use. More than likely they will then “+1” you and that will increase your organic rankings exponentially! Building links and validation to your site is still going to be a major factor in your rankings for any organic search, but now we have another piece to the overall SEO puzzle.

This is still a fairly new addition Google has implemented so if you are wanting to get ahead of your competition here is the site for Google +1 which it will show you how to actually get this implemented onto your website.

As always, we here at Boostability are here to keep you up to date on all of the latest trends and factors in how you can be found online. Be sure to sign up to our feed for the latest updates and information on whats happening in the SEO World.

Source: http://www.boostability.com/blog/google-introduces-1-to-its-organic-search/