Google+ is one of the fastest growing social media networks on the web. One of the greatest advantages of Google+ over other social networking platforms is that Google+ is integrated with several other of your Google accounts and products. This makes it an attractive social network for those already engaged with Google.
Additionally (and perhaps more powerful from a SEO and Internet marketing standpoint,) Google+ activity can pop-up in Google's search engine results. Although this only really occurs with individuals who already have an established Google+ account, the fact that social activity is being integrated in search is serious game-changer that must not go overlooked.
So like any social media network, having a strong following is important make a big impact, especially for businesses. In this blog post, we share with you 5 tips to attract a stronger and more meaningful Google+ following.
Writing and sharing posts on a consistent basis is important because it shows your followers you are engaged. This can significantly encourage recommendations and attract more followers. Additionally, sharing content is also an effective SEO tactic, for you posts have the potential to show up in the search results. It's important to keep in mind that your posts should be of valuable to your audience. Give them something that they'll appreciate and respect.
Making posts public leads to want maximum exposure. This is because sharing to the public means everybody on the Internet can view them. There is a great chance that your posts will go viral if you share them with the public. An alternative to this is sharing your posts with “Extended Circles”. This means your posts will be shared to all your followers and the people in their circles. The people in your followers’ circles will be able to view your posts in incoming streams.
Once you have added the people you know, add the people you do not know. Follow such people as Google insiders, celebs, authors, and Google community managers to increase your chances of getting a great following. Avoid the temptation of joining everyone on such lists. Only add people who you are interested in. Talk to the people you add, comment on posts in their profiles, and +1 to the posts you like. This will endear them to you and this will increase the chances of their following you back.
Ensure that people can find you easily on Google’s profile search. Also important is ensuring that people know what you are about the moment they see your profile. Go to the site’s privacy settings and turn off the parts you wish to be public. Upload a nice picture since people respond positively to images. Come up with a mini-bio describing who you are. In the mini-bio, describe what types of things you are involved in, as well as your interests.
Hangouts allow up to 10 people to participate in the same video chat. This feature is immensely popular for 1st Gen Google+ community, and you should take advantage of it to attract more followers. Use Hangouts on Air, which is available to some business pages only, to connect to like-minded persons. This ensures you have quality following, not just quantity following.
So whether you're involved in social media marketing for ecommerce or operate a small business, the benefits of using Google+ are huge for companies of all types. And they just keep growing, too.continue...
Some people may know that Google Places Pages are now referred to as Google+ Local Pages. In addition to this, these pages are now integrated into Google’s new social media network.
However, most businesses do not know that they can now merge their Google+ business page to the local listing that they already had. Here are some of the things that you should know about these changes.
1. Google+ business page vs. Google+ local page: What is the difference?
The Google+ business page is technically a social media profile for your company. It is interactive with customers as you can post content and updates which can be viewed by people that follow your business. This content can also turn-up in search results performed by people who use Google+.
The Google+ Local page is a listing that is integrated into the search results. Not only does it carry basic information about the company, but it also includes its physical location, contact information, hours of business and more.
2. Which types of businesses can merge these pages?
All local businesses that previously had a local listing can now choose to either merge their Google+ business page or create a new classified page and merge that with their Google+ listing. It is important to note that these business pages are classified into the following: product, brand or company; arts, entertainment or sports; institution or organization. Non local business pages do not have the capability of currently merging their pages.
3. Is it necessary to merge the pages?
It is not mandatory to merge your pages but by doing so you have a variety of new tools that will enable your Google+ listing to be all the more dynamic. This makes your page much more engaging to people who visit it. In addition to that, merging the pages ensures that your listing shows up in Google search results as well as in Google+ searches. This increases your online presence and also provides a lot more information to current as well as potential clients.
Users will get to see information about your business, as well as the content that you post. Merging your pages is also a convenient option for you as you now get the chance to monitor these pages from one location which is known as the Google+ Pages admin page.
4. So how do I get started?
To begin with, you would require a personal profile on Google+ that is associated to your email address. This profile is what will be used in the creation of your Google+ business page. Once this is done, log into the account and select “pages”. You will then get to a section named “manage your pages”.
Here you can choose to create a new page or choose the page you would like to manage. Next you should follow the prompts that come up to either create a new business page or to begin merging the existing pages that you have. Once you have verified everything, you will receive a postcard from Google for you to confirm the address on the listing. After confirmation you can then begin setting up the new page and updating content.
Whether or not your company is fully engaged with social media marketing, it's important (at least for SEO and general web marketin purposes) that you business respects Google+. Read our blog post on how to attract more Google+ followers to learn more.continue...
Google one of the most powerful marketing tools that you can use to help grow your business online. If you would like to give your business a boost, it is recommended that you sign up with Google+ Local. This being a local listing, you get a chance to reel in targeted traffic from your area. Another benefit of using Google+ is the local SEO benefit. Since Google Places pages have been replaced with Google+ Local pages, the search exposure can be invaluable.
Like Google Places pages, attaining a wealth of Google+ Local reviews can help promote your business's search engine listing. However, not many businesses understand how to attract more reviews from their customers. Before we get into reviews, first lets talk about how Google+ Local can enhance your business.
What is Google+ Local Reviews? Before getting into the local reviews bit of it, it is pertinent that you first understand how Google+ local works. Essentially, this is an extension of the popular feature Google Maps. It is a way of fostering interactivity with Google Maps. Google Maps is made up of locations globally. Each location will link back to a Google+ Local page. Thus, anyone can learn all they need to know about a business in brief by clicking on the business’ local page.
The information that can be gleaned on this is not simply about what the business offers though. You can get a wide range of information including directions to the physical address of the business, videos pertaining to the business and more. With Google+ Local Reviews, customers get a chance to post about the experience that they had with a particular business.
There are a number of ways that reviews can be generated. For one, a business can request their past customers to post about their personal experience with the company. This is a great way of getting positive reviews especially if you strive to provide excellent services. However, you should keep in mind that you cannot dictate what type of reviews will be posted. Another way that reviews can be generated is through Google itself.
Google has taken it a step further by aggregating reviews from third party sites that specialize in reviewing businesses. Thus, you will find that a wide range of reviews will come up for different businesses on Google+ Local reviews. This will give potential clients a chance to see what type of business they will be dealing with. For instance, if you operate a Michigan SEO firm, you may want to encourage your clients to offer reviews so that you're perceived as a credible Michigan SEO expert.
Can the reviews be edited or removed? As aforementioned, a business has no power over the type of reviews that will be posted about them. Therefore, it is not uncommon to find that negative reviews will also be posted as these reviews are largely based on a matter of personal opinion. Although a business’ first option would be to get rid of negative reviews, this is not an acceptable practice with Google.
It is always best to get two sides of a coin since everyone will have their own opinion. However, in the event that a review was illegal, was incorrect, or perhaps it was irrelevant, you have the opportunity to flag the review. Google will then investigate it and decide on whether or not it should be pulled down.
To learn more about the importance of integrating Google+ with you local SEO strategy, visit SEO Illinois experts, Online Innovative Creations. The provide free SEO and web assessments for all types of businesses.continue...
Mobile marketing has become extremely valuable due to the ever-rising number of mobile users. Additionally, many people are now doing their online shopping and price comparing on mobile phones.
Whether your a local service provider or an enterprise-level ecommerce store, mobile marketing can offer a number of benefits for all types of companies. Below are some tips to help you get started on creating a mobile marketing strategy.
Before you even decide to channel your finances into mobile marketing, it is important to find out your current mobile web presence. What does your mobile search traffic look? How well do people engage with your website on a mobile device?
In addition to these elements, you also need to know about the potential traffic that is generated through mobile devices. Having these figures will help you to determine the amount of resources you should invest in the mobile marketing campaign and the kind of returns to expect.
Secondly, you need to know how much you will allocate to this mobile marketing campaign. As soon as you know your search volume, you can easily prioritize on the most critical aspects of the campaign that need a proper budget. Remember that the kind of money you set aside for mobile marketing should be realistic. Make sure it is in line with the number of mobile users you are targeting.
You also need to structure your campaign well so that it becomes easier to evaluate performance and control your budget. For instance, you can divide the mobile marketing campaign into different campaigns based on the type of mobile device being used. For instance, you can have different campaigns for tablet users and other smart phone users. When you divide your campaign based on the device used, you will be able to concentrate on the needs of different mobile users.
When establishing your mobile marketing campaign, you have to keep in mind that the mobile user has very distinct demands. For instance, the mobile user is always in transit. It can be impossible to capture the zip codes or city names of this user. As a marketer, you must ensure that there are additional features on the site that make it easier to close a sale.
For instance, you can decide to be sending your mobile users some coupons or quotes directly to their phones. These considerations will help you determine the level of mobile website optimization you need to invest in to cater to your users' needs.
Remember that, unlike the desktop or laptop computers, mobile phones have a smaller interface and ads may not appear in the same order. For instance, when performing a Google search on mobile, you will realize that only 5 ads appear. Two of these ads will appear on the first page above the organic results. You must try and bid very important keywords on these two ads.
With the increase in use of mobile devices, you must ensure that you invest in an effective mobile marketing strategy. You should take your time to decide on the amount of resources you need to invest in this campaign. The tips mentioned above will help you to kick start your search and succeed.continue...
It is true that PC search behaviors have extended into mobile phones. Google has sponsored research which reveals that 74% of smartphone users are using search engines on their mobile devices. Yet most people find mobile search rather awkward and harder to use as compared to using search online.
These are some of the results that came up as a result of a survey carried out by Search Engine Land and SurveyMonkey.
As to the behavior that most people showed while conducting online results using their smartphones, the following were ascertained.
(These figures have been rounded off and thus may not make up a hundred percent.)
The survey revealed that slightly more than half (52.5 percent) of the mobile audience made use of search engine just like desktop. However over 63%, to some extent, engaged with mobile search. 10.6% of the people past the 52% mark, used apps and search equally. The population which had replaced the search with apps appears to be quite small.
As to the experience of the users, the following were ascertained.
(These figures have been rounded off and thus may not make up a hundred percent.)
While the majority of the smartphone users prefer searching using their mobile phones, 61% find it harder compared to using the PC. Less than 20% on the other hand attributed their easy search while using mobile to voice search. Slightly over 10% revealed that they liked using apps more than mobile search engines.
This survey was carried out by Marketing Land and SurveyMonkey, between 21st and 22nd November 2013. These results were arrived at using a confidence interval of 95% and a margin of error of 5% from over four hundred Americans by the use of SurveyMonkey Audience.continue...
When it comes to establishing and maintaining a strong web presence for your business, a great avenue is to create a content marketing strategy. Not just any run-of-the-mill scheme that entails poor content creation and ineffective distribution mechanisms. If you are looking to attract not just Internet users but also deep-pocket businesses, marketing your info-rich content to the right audiences can have a momentous impact on generating B2B leads.
While most content marketing strategies are based on a business to consumer (B2C) approach, a content marketing strategy anchored on B2B is different. Whereas materials and information shared on a business to consumer marketing ploy are rather "general," B2B-focused content marketing is more specific to the delivery of information that's tailored to enhance and maintain sales cycles and generate business leads.
With that said, the rules of content marketing that is focused on business to business design is almost similar to the approaches used for business to consumer marketing. Here are some of the effective tips you could use to make your B2B content marketing very effective in getting the business leads you need and the connection you require to become an authority in your business niche.
The first thing that you need to know when creating content is that search engines as well as internet users regard content value as an utmost consideration. The whole web is flooded by worthless articles and poorly written blog posts that are basically trash. When you produce content material, you make sure that people will find it informative, entertaining, or in some way share-worthy. Otherwise, using articles of little to no value will not only lead your marketing campaign to shambles but also ruin your site’s reputation.
Think of you consumers first before search engine crawlers. Although content marketing empowers search marketing, when you write with your audience in mind, there is a tendency that you produce content that people can easily relate to and understand. A readable article is a whole lot better than 10 write ups of trash. While search engine crawlers help index a site and determine its ranking in the search engine results pages, when you write for people instead of bots and crawlers, it is like you personally reaching out to them and telling them that you have the solution to any issue that are experiencing or will experience.
Content marketing these days no longer operate within the boundaries of words, articles, and blogs. The advent of social networking sites has created a huge impact on how sites are optimized to get the highest rankings in search engine results pages. Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram offers various platforms with which content marketers can use to launch their content.
The content marketing benefits are empowered by social media. The beauty of social media and networking sites is that they are not limited to words. Many products are now presented via educational and informative videos, excellent snapshots, and audio recordings.
Content marketing is still a huge tool in getting your online presence the visibility it needs to get some leverage. Do it right and you will find significant improvement in your site’s performance as well as a boost in your sales.continue...
Since the first launch of Google Panda in February 2011, the name of this algorithm update became a nightmare for many SEO's and website owners, including huge names in the industry.
The new Google Panda 4.0 update was no different then the first. The main objective is to support websites that have high quality content while penalizing sites that have duplicate, meaningless, and spammy content.
Website owners who only optimize their content for ranking high in search engine results without providing something valuable to visitors will lose, because the update aims to prioritize the usefulness of high quality websites for readers.
The new update had some negative consequences on reputed businesses, such as eBay, History.com, Ask.com, biography.com and many others.
On the other hand, some popular websites had a lot to gain from this and good examples can be buzzfeed.com, glassdoor.com, medterms.com, etc.
These websites are known for their high quality, original, unique and useful articles. According to what SEO's are saying, it is quite difficult to know if your site has been penalized or not. But, you can still be successful if you do things right.
It is not known when this series of updates for Google Panda will end, but until it will, many websites will continue to be destroyed. Content that has already been posted thousands of times will not be considered unique even if it is written a bit differently, so you will have to create really original articles for Google to consider them reliable.
It can be hard to do that, but with enough practice and work, it can be achieved. This is for a greater good, as in the long term sites with awesome content that really deserve to be well ranked will have a lot to gain. If your websites have that originality, there is nothing to fear of, because Google will notice your work and rank it accordingly.
To stay abreast the latest on Google Panda, visist SearchEngineLand.com's Panda News section and keep up to speed.continue...
There's a great deal of speculation in the SEO community on the influence that social media has on the overall ranking/indexing on search engines. Most SEO experts believe that though Google and Bing have both denied any impact on the “natural selection” algorithm, there is great likelihood that social media has a part in the process.
The number of likes, tweets, pins, +1's, and shares should, to an extent, influence the indexing. John Mueller (Google) and Duane Forrester (Bing) recently responded to these uncertainties during the London SMX that took place on the 13th May 2014. Although their explanations still maintained social media activities are not part of the ranking reckoning, they did provide useful insights on possible influence. This is how they broke it down:
Both Bing and Google explained that there has to be a definite reason why people would share, tweet or like a given page in larger numbers. This naturally attracts the search engines attention which they maintain is purposefully for evaluation meaning; the system will be interested in the content in these pages.
If the content is relevant, there is a great chance of a higher ranking for the pages. This is a basic explanation to address how social media can influence ranking. It is acceptable that where there are more shares, likes, pins, tweets and related socail activities, people must be to some extent realizing usefulness and search will close down on the same. In simple terms, more social activities combined with information relevance may increase your rankings.
Usually Google and Bing rank sites that have been evaluated and determined to provide useful and relevant information according to the search. The two greatest search engines explained how social indicators are used in link evaluations rather than ranking. When webpage content receives a lot of social activity, it should be obvious that some people will make links to that content and include them in their sites/blogs or pages permanently.
This reshapes the idea behind links and introduces a new definition as well as evaluation, which search engines use to evaluate “credibility” and actions taken may include penalization. What this means is that a new content with over 100 links should exhibit correspondence in the number of shares it receives.
If say it only gets three shares, that situation would arguably be very abnormal insinuating less relevance and subsequent low rating. If it receives 1000 social shares on the other hand, that makes more sense and could influence indexing although this was not proclaimed in the event.
For any keen SEO expert, social indicators certainly do have an indirect influence on indexing which is entirely aimed at providing the most relevant and informational result as per the search. Search engines use social media to some extent in determining how quick content is indexed and whether the permanent links pointing to such content are valid.
However in conclusion, social media does not form part of the search engine algorithm, bet rather content relevancy and links still remains the strongest consideration.continue...
While SEO is focal to increasing the search visibility of a website or webpage in organic search engine results, content marketing is completely different approach that has similar aspirations. Content marketing refers to any kind of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of media and publishing content with the aim of attaining and retaining customers.
The two, if merged in an appropriate manner, can bring the ultimate success in inbound marketing. To reach the point of success, you have to look beyond general views of SEO being just about traffic, revenue and conversations. Sufficient evidence from case studies has proven that content planning and content promotion is key to successful marketing. Put in other words, merging SEO to an effective content marketing strategy will ultimately lead to high rankings in search results and consequently building a powerful brand.
When integrating SEO and content marketing, there are four elements that when used, will work to ensure the much sought success in marketing. Top on the list is finding what people want and giving it to them. The other elements include using display ads and retargeting lists to communicate with customers, making special price offers on your product and lastly, evolving a smart content marketing plan to develop content that pulls in your target.
When carried out in the correct manner, content marketing becomes one of the best ways of building relationship with customers. Good relationship with customers leads to the establishment of trust and authority in the given market while positioning the company right in the middle of the buying and research cycle. Being at this position, the company may take control of what they see, think read and do.
A lot of effort has been put into merging of SEO with content marketing but in most of the cases, the marketing ends up failing all together. Reasons for the fails may be attributed to the methodologies used, some of which are based on pure misconceptions. First and foremost, is important to take note that content marketing is not paid content being disguised as editorial content.
The second mistake that is even more costly, is giving the customers the impression that one is selling or marketing. Content should be geared to creating value for customers, meeting their needs and helping them as opposed to being focused on just selling. By gearing content to be more customer focused, you will eventually give a wider reach and impact as more people out there will find your content.
To build your brand and make it a market leader through content marketing, you need to be the most appealing in your market area. This may be achieved using SEO analysis and keyword research done by an experienced consultant to get to know the search users’ needs, intent and questions. Before even going to invest in content marketing, get to know what your customer wants, their interests, desires and problems.
The list of challenges and shortcomings that hinder companies in the merging of content marketing and SEO tactics are generally common and recurring. Some of the content marketing challenges include, weak content planning, failing to integrate content marketing into digital channels and lack of knowledge of digital marketing. To avoid most of the challenges, planning and research should be done seriously. One should also ensure that the created content takes you closer to the business goals.
In conclusion, the merging of SEO tactics with content marketing generates better outcomes where experts work together. It is also quite important to write original and interesting content that is customer focused. Finally, although the merging of SEO with content marketing is not a walk in the park, its returns are numerous and worth it.continue...
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