Well it’s that time of year again folks. Christmas is over and we are about ready to bring in the new year. Since 2012 is coming to a close and the new year is mere hours away, I thought it would be fun to post a short video outlining some of my New Years resolutions for 2013. Enjoy!
It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!….
Que the music…
Since it’s a the end of the world as we know and we aren’t going to be here tomorrow anyhow I have gone absolutely crazy with the pricing on our guest blogging services.
Guest post today are $75. per post. That’s a whopping 50%. discount off the normal rate.
To get started simply call 281-727-0848 ext 5 or contact us.
Have a happy and safe Armageddon!
SEO is all about increasing website visibility by making it rank high in search engines. Companies will always strive to make their websites appear at the first page of the SERPs for searches on related keywords. In order for that to happen, their sites have to be crawled by Google bots in the first place.
It is important to note that in order to rank, all the other pages of your website should be equally competitive in the search engines, not just your homepage. Besides, internal pages are the ones that usually make it on the SERPs (except for exact keyword searches that are directly related to a website; i.e. name of the website’s company).
If you want your website to be indexed, you have to catch the attention of the bots first.
Update Your Website Frequently
Simple updates of the content on you site can already alert the bots to pay attention to your site. Long dormant websites are usually left alone because there’s nothing new to find there anyway. Simply breaking the stagnancy signals new activity and alerts the bots that there are possibly new pages to crawl.
Updating your website alone will not guarantee that your pages will be crawled quickly, nor will it guarantee that the bots will be constantly coming back to crawl new pages in your site, but it’s a good start. To keep that ball rolling, proceed with a number of SEO activities at the same time. You can get your pages crawled faster and more frequently afterwards if you follow through the rest of this list.
Posting new content regularly is one of the simplest ways to make sure that search engines take notice and crawl your web pages. This is why sites like Ezine Articles, Digg, Reddit and other bookmarking and article publishing sites commonly end up on the first search engine results pages. The crawling rate in those pages is both fast and frequent because they are always monitored by Google bots for new content to index.
Not all websites are capable of posting new content regularly though, as their very nature does not permit it. A company website for instance doesn’t need constant revision of their content. After all, the mission and vision of a company will not change regularly, and the company history will still be the same. Writers will be bored out of their minds if they have to keep on revising that content.
So in order for their crawl rate to pick up, these websites can create a blog page or news roll for their website. These pages will require frequent and regular posting of new content.
Check Meta Robots Tags, Page Load Speed, 404s, Crawl Speed.
Don’t forget to use robots.txt to guide the bots which pages to crawl and not to crawl. Create a sitemap and make sure the headers and meta titles of your pages are done correctly. You can even initiate a crawl yourself by submitting your URL to Google.
Also, check if the loading speed of your pages is too long. Spiders have very limited attention spans and would ignore pages that take too long to load. 404 errors are also roadblocks for getting your pages crawled by Google bots.
Gather Valuable Links
Getting inbound links into your web pages is another way to get crawlers into your site—provided that the other website you are linking with is frequently crawled by Google as well. The links become virtual bridges that bots can travel through. If you’re just linking with another fledgling site that’s not doing so well with the crawlers, then none of you is really helping the other.
This is actually an excellent reason and motivation for SEOs to work on getting high quality links from bigger, more successful websites. Link juice isn’t the only thing they can give you, but also the chance to get your pages crawled by Google.
Similarly, if you’re going to do blog commenting and put a link back to your website, make sure that the sites you’re leaving comments on are not spammed with junk comments.
Use Sharing Buttons
Making your website go social is an excellent way to invite traffic and, more importantly, gather valuable links. This doesn’t always mean having accounts in all major social media websites. Sometimes merely adding sharing buttons in your page is enough to get your content and links circulating in social media networks.
You can go to AddThis.com and ShareThis.com to get sharing buttons for free. If you are using a blogging platform like Blogger and WordPress, they already provide the widgets for social media sharing. If you go to AddThis and ShareThis though, you can choose the style of buttons to put in your website.
Use Bookmarking Sites
Submitting links of your pages to bookmarking sites will not just help bring traffic to your site, it will also help the bots find, crawl, and index them. Your links will come out as new content for these bookmarking sites. Since they are constantly generating content (which means Google bots are constantly keeping their eyes on them), your page will almost immediately be crawled. The effect on the rest of your website is similar to having valuable links on your web pages.
Bookmarking sites also increases your social activity, which is another way to garner links from other—hopefully valuable and high-ranking—sites. Here are some of the top bookmarking sites you can use today:
Importance of Speed and Frequency
Take note that we’re targeting not just a one-time crawl, but frequent visits from the Google bots. These steps will help make your website become one of the search engine’s priorities and be in its radar for constant monitoring. You want Google to index your pages as soon as they go live. These points are important because all your SEO efforts will go unnoticed if your pages are not indexed in the first place.
Modern technologies have made email newsletters a vital part of every organization’s marketing plan. Email marketing is not a new approach but it still is plausibly the top channel for online sales due to its low cost, high return on investment and easy implementation.
Effective email marketing can help you to drive and maintain your customer engagement, foster market research and track metrics for optimization. However, you should be very careful when you make your first step in email marketing. Even minor negligence can result in your email newsletter getting filtered as spam or junk mail. Sometimes the best way to learn what is right is to consider what not to do. In that spirit, we shall now discuss the 4 simple mistakes that occur in email newsletters and marketing and the ways to avoid them.
Not prioritizing email list building: Building an email list in a proper way should be your first priority. Nowadays people are barraged with opt-in forms and therefore they hesitate to give their email addresses to others. You have to be proactive while building your email list. You can use drop boxes or sign-up sheets in retail outlets to sign up for emails, gather names at trade shows, conferences and meetings or run a contest for prizes/giveaways.
Not segmenting your lists: If you want to create the right impact through your email newsletters, you have to segment your email lists properly. Only through proper segmentation of your email lists, you can ensure that the message that your subscribers read is relevant to their needs and their concerns. Make sure that you deliver timely and relevant email newsletters to your users based on their purchase history data or data provided by them. One last tip for enhancing relevancy in your email newsletter marketing is to segment your subscribers demographically. Sending triggered email newsletters based on user behavior is a strategy that produces fruitful results.
Weak subject lines – Not testing subject lines and email click-throughs: Most marketing professionals are not aware of the fact that a weak subject line can destroy all their email marketing efforts. Your subject line is the first thing that readers will see, and it should be crafted in such a way that it piques their interest and makes them want to read more. To increase your open rates, your subject line should be relevant, specific, engaging and should state the targeted benefit. Ensure that your subject line is crisp and does not exceed 50 characters. Avoid using marketing words such as “free”, “sale”, “save money” etc. These words may make your readers push your email newsletters to the spam folder. Instead, start with words like “Here are…”, “About your…” to win their attention.
Not testing HTML and plain text email templates: So now, you are ready with your email template, right? Your next step should be to decide on the format in which you are going to send your email newsletter – HTML or plain text email template. If you are going to send text-only emails, then it’s just a standard configuration but HTML email templates are much more appealing than plain text email templates.
HTML email newsletters are visual emails that attract the attention of your subscriber more effectively than words. But you can’t come to the conclusion that plain text email newsletters are outdated. Many mobile devices can render only text emails and there are some subscribers who prefer text emails over HTML. Generally, people think hitting the ‘convert HTML to text’ button in your email marketing solution, will do all the work. But this conversion tool pulls the text out of your HTML message and drops it into text module. Plain text email templates need to be formatted and organized differently to lay emphasis on important content.
Now you are all set to work on your first email newsletter. Though it is human to make mistakes, this detailed list will help you avoid some major errors and save your head.
Post Penguin Link Building
In the web landscape, it is no secret that Google is a giant, rolling out updates every other day to its algorithm to establish absolute relevancy of results and an improved user experience. This is acutely focused at making the search engine respond to queries in the desired manner, rendering results with information a user is specifically looking for.
Despite the fact that a Penguin is an adorable creature, when Google Penguin came, it proved to be the worst nightmare for SEO experts and website owners since rankings of countless websites fell like soldiers losing in a battlefield.
The release of Google Penguin was announced on 24th April, 2012 and to the great disappointment of many, caught them by surprise. Sources cited that the underlying reason for releasing this update was the identification of websites who were violating Google’s Webmaster Guidelines by incorporating black hat SEO techniques like cloaking, link schemes, keyword stuffing, duplicate content and others.
Mercilessly retaliating against the spammy websites, link building is one aspect that attracted a lot of limelight in the post Penguin era. For website owners who have been working for years on link-building, the algorithm update came as a shock as they saw all their efforts going down the drain. The update implied that link building has gotten more technical than ever before and only the more skilled ones will now be able to survive.
A fallacious believe around which the Search Engine Optimization strategies were structured till now was that links are just a viable means to bring more traffic to the website but do not have the potential to actually hurt your website rankings. Nothing can be farther from the truth as the secret is out. The way links are incorporated in a website can now have an influential role to play in the post Penguin age.
The update has been exceptionally successful in knocking down spam sites, but if you are one of those who have made use of black hat SEO techniques to land among the top search engine results, Google is going to hit you hard. To avoid it, it is time to whiten the hat and rebuild your SEO strategy. After all, it is never too late to repent.
While a lot has been said and done when it comes to post Penguin link building, some fool-proof tips to not only secure improvements in your rankings, but also to survive the Penguin update successfully are outlined below.
1. Get Social to Spell Success
We are living in the social media age and if you are wondering how social media and link building are associated, read on.
Whenever you post fresh content on your blog or website, make sure you share it on all of your social media pages. This should be done like a reflex. A lot of websites failed badly despite regular posts on their blogs. Why? Because they were not sharing them over Facebook, Google + or Twitter. What is the point of boasting about so-so number of fans and followers if you are not showing them your content?
This helps you create a win-win situation where all you have to do is to make social media spread your content virally, well beyond the premises of your fan base and voila! you get likes, +1’s and retweets. What is there to lose? Zilch!
2. Inner-Page Linking
A mistake a lot of SEO experts and website owners make is that they always link to their homepage. While it cannot be denied that homepage is the most important page of any website, Google is going to raise an eyebrow if it finds all of the backlinks pointing to your homepage. Internal linking is very important because that is where the real content is believed to be. It does not make any sense to Googlebot that none of the links are pointing to the content on the inner pages of the website where blog posts, videos and guides are available.
Take time to improve your website’s internal structure and make sure that the right keywords are directing the users to the right web pages. The following is an example of a website SEOMOZ that uses different mediums to provide links to its internal web pages.
3. Diversify Your Anchor Texts
It is time you get a break from the traditional SEO practices because another element Google Penguin plans to address is on-site and off-site over-optimization. Just imagine how annoying Google can get when it feels that you are forcing it to rank you for a specific keyword such as ‘cheap cars for sale.’ Google will find it highly suspicious that all of your link partners are using the exact key phrase to link to you, which not only happens to be pasted over your title bar but homepage as well.
If people choose to link to you naturally, they are most likely to be using different anchor texts to do so. This way you will achieve linking organically, which will eventually get the wheels going in the right direction. Don’t forget, diversity is the key.
4. Quality over Quantity
Google is going to penalize you if it finds that you have a large number of backlinks from sites that are untrustworthy. It is imperative to understand that one quality link from a blog is better than 30 from unreliable sources. Go for quality because even if it is going to be a small number, it is going to work for you. Of course, you do not want to go to sleep every night wondering if you are next on Penguin’s hit list.
5. Charm with Link-Worthy Content
Last but not the least; you have to stay focused at producing content that others find link-worthy. Stuff that fails to engage readers is not going to get you anywhere. This is because bad user experience is synonymous to low Google rankings. Give your readers something that encourages them to stay with you or even come back again. Content is, and will always be, king.
With the tips above, we hope that you will be able to take your website’s link building in the post Penguin period a step ahead. With the rules of the game changed, link building is no rocket science, but when done appropriately, it can and will work wonders for you.
An article was prepared by SEM Company Promodo.
Whether your site falls outside of Google’s AdSense program or you’re simply not happy with your current payouts and are looking for an alternative, T3Ads wants to help you maximize the value of your traffic.
What is T3Ads?
Although T3Ads is a new concept, the team behind it has a lot of experience. The platform was developed by T3Leads, which is a company based in Encino, CA. Since 2006, they have provided affiliates and merchants with the tools they need to maximize the value of their marketing efforts. T3Leads’ areas of expertise include US and UK payday loans, debt settlement, home loans, auto finance, home insurance, debt relief and home improvement. They’ve built an especially strong reputation around their payday affiliate program.
Because T3Leads has been working with affiliates for over half a decade, they have seen just how difficult it can be for publishers in many verticals to properly monetize their sites. As the company grew to over 20,000 active affiliates, they had the opportunity to talk to more and more publishers. During these discussions, they noticed that the same issues came up time and time again. Common complaints included lack of human support, unclear policies, low payouts and constant fear of accidentally doing something wrong that would immediately result in a permanent ban.
After continuing to hear these complaints and realizing that Google was in no hurry to change their AdSense policies, T3Leads decided to tackle the problem on their own.
5 Reasons to Use T3Ads
Because the entire platform was built around feedback they received from actual online publishers, T3Ads has several key features that set it apart from other advertising program. Whether you have a single blog or a network of websites, here are five reasons to test out T3Ads:
- 24 hour live support means that if you ever have a question, instead of waiting for days to receive an answer (or never getting one at all), you’ll have an answer within minutes.
- Instead of constant fluctuations, you’ll receive transparent information that explains exactly how your payouts are calculated.
- The easy to use platform makes it dead simple to create ad units and place them on your site.
- T3Ads is far more open with the types of sites they accept, as well as sources of traffic.
- Publishers get full control over how they monetize their site thanks to the ability to easily customize ads.
If you like what you’ve read about T3Leads and their new advertising program, all you’ll need to do is visit their site and complete their simple signup process. And since the company truly cares about taking care of its customers, if you have any questions when you visit the site, all you’ll need to do is grab your phone and call the number in the upper right corner of the site.
Keyword research is one of the first things new Internet marketers learn. Understanding what people are looking for online, and how they are searching for it, is the critical step that allows everything else to fall into place. Many keyword tools list several pieces of valuable information, including the amount of searches per month, competition level and advertising rate. This data is fairly straightforward, but not all of it is meant to be used for SEO keyword research. Knowing the difference between SEO and PPC keywords will help you become more visible than ever on the results page and drive the right kind of traffic to your blog or business.
The Difference Between SEO and PPC
The results of search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising campaigns generally appear in the same place: search engine pages. Users enter a certain string of keywords, and then a mix of optimized and paid websites appear. That, however, is where the similarities end. Search engine optimization takes months or even years to build up to a competitive level. Pay-per-click advertisements can bring in instantaneous traffic on even the most high-demand keywords, but it costs a certain amount for every click delivered, and there’s no guarantee that those visitors will convert into sales.
SEO Keyword Research
SEO is all about visibility and luring people in with the same limited real estate as everyone else. Most small websites focus on long-tail keywords to bring in the right kinds of readers and avoid having to compete with the big players for the general search terms. These narrower queries see less traffic but actually help marketers pick out the visitors they want. For example, a website selling holistic remedies can gain a lot more from the keywords “natural toe fungus treatment” than from “toe fungus.” Once a keyword is selected, the marketer uses both on-site and off-site SEO to improve his or her ranking, hopefully seeing a gradual increase in hits and conversions. When performing keyword research for SEO, the most important information to consider is traffic per month.
PPC Keyword Research
Pay-per-click advertising is a different animal. There is a ranking system to most search result advertising spots, particularly with AdWords, that depends partially on bids of cost-per-click as well as the ad’s Quality Score. Quality Scores are determined by the ad’s relevance to a keyword search. That means advertisers need to target the keywords that will bring in more revenue. “The history of sewage treatment in 18th century England,” for example, won’t draw many advertisers because the people searching for it are unlikely to buy anything. The competition for ad spots in this niche, and thus the cost-per-click, will be low, but the returns are so negligible that it’s not worth buying a campaign.
Creating an Integrated Strategy
Both SEO and PPC campaigns have their place in a marketer’s toolbox. Advertising is a great way to boost a website’s popularity while the long-term SEO is being implemented, and can be used to explore new markets worth branching into. Every campaign presents a financial risk and may lose money if the right keywords are paired with the wrong ad copy, or vice versa. On the other hand, poor SEO keyword research can be even more devastating. Losing $200 on advertising makes for a bad day, but spending months building a particular keyword and then hitting a brick wall is worse. Keyword research tools, whether free or paid, usually contain all of the information you need to bring your website to the attention of your customers. Using it effectively in a variety of balanced marketing strategies, however, is up to you.
What are Google Rich Snippets?
Google Rich Snippets are nothing but the additional lines of information that appear next to the Google search results. They are designed to provide quick information to users regarding what’s on the page and why it’s relevant to their query. These snippets encompass star ratings for the web page and other detailed information related to the query. Generally, you can find Google Rich Snippets in websites of restaurants, music, people, events, videos, recipes, products and businesses. Having a 5-star rating in your Google Rich Snippet encourages Internet users to click on your listing. This is the reason why Google Rich Snippets are considered to be the perfect addition to your online marketing strategies.
Now that we have seen the advantages of using Google Rich Snippets, let us move to the next step of creating and customizing Google Rich Snippets with Schema.org Microdata.
Defining Metaboxes: A metabox helps you to add content or scripts to any part of the website.First of all, to qualify for Google Rich Snippets, you have to define metaboxes. You don’t have to provide all the properties included in the specification, even though each content type has a minimum requirement. There are numerous custom metaboxes available and is indeed a great way to make custom fields friendlier to users.
Marking up your pages with Microdata: The specialty of Google Rich Snippets is its structured, semantic markup that enables Google to understand the content of the web page. So, it’s your duty to markup your content properly to describe the particular type of content on your website. When it comes to marking up your content, there are three types of formats – microformats, Microdata and RDFa. Google has always recommended the Microdata format for rich snippets as it allows search engines to understand your content a lot better and delivers more meaningful search listings for the user’s query. In fact, Microdata has no effect on your search engine rankings but it provides a richer and more useful browsing experience for users.
Use Schema.org vocabulary: All the major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Yandex have launched Schema.org. Schema.org is a not a language but a Microdata vocabulary, that helps you to create common vocabulary for structured data markup on web pages. As it uses the same vocabulary across all participating search engines, there are fewer chances for confusion over twofold meanings or unsupported jargons. The most vital thing you have to keep in mind is that you can use Schema.org to markup only the visible part of your web pages and not any of the hidden page elements.
Many sites are already experiencing great SEO benefits with rich snippets. With the guidelines provided above, you now know how to customize Google Rich Snippets with Schema.org vocabulary. Using Schema.org and Microdata have positive impacts on your website, as they help improve the user experience and invite more clicks.
Even though the temperature is rising towards 80 degrees outside my office today, I’m still a sucker for the all things Christmas. So, in the spirit of giving, I’ve decided to run a special guest blog post offer. Our standard rate for guest blogging is $150 a post. But because nonstop Christmas music and more glasses of eggnog than I can count have revved up my Christmas spirit to full blast, I’m offering discounts as big as Santa’s belly through the end of December:
- $75 a post for agencies
- $100 a post for individual site owners
That’s a massive savings of up to $75 per post!
(since I don’t want to end up like Bob Cratchit, this deal requires an order of at least 10 posts)
I’m no Grinch, but this deal really is going to end on 12/31. Since the last thing you want is to start 2013 with regrets about not saving money on a proven service, order today so you don’t miss out!
To get started simply call 281-727-0484 ext 5 or simply contact us.
Distilled recently discussed the possibility of buying awareness to build links, a possibility that I’ve toyed around with in the past with some success. Carson Ward’s test certainly demonstrated it was possible to build links this way, but is it a worthwhile use of time and money?
I hate giving vague answers, but the truth is that it’s going to depend on your content, audience, and industry. However, I can offer some advice on how to figure it out for yourself, and possible other uses of advertising traffic you may not have considered.
Which Channels Are Best?
Carson’s results are in line with my own on this. AdWords impressions cost more than the keyword tool says they’re going to, and the value probably isn’t there, because even low competition informational keywords end up going for about half a dollar per click. AdWords appears to be for selling, plain and simple.
Reddit and StumbleUpon ads are cheapest, but also have some of the lowest time on site. Of course, high bounce rates can make time on site appear lower than it actually is. The most promising ads seem to be on Facebook or targeted display ads, with the display ads doing best in terms of links and price. Obviously, Facebook ads can lead to social subscribers and word of mouth that are beneficial even in the absence of links.
That said, I wouldn’t write off Reddit or StumbleUpon as possibilities, simply because they send such a large amount of traffic at such a low cost. If you gain enough traction with StumbleUpon, it’s algorithm will continue to send traffic for quite a while. In both cases, if you can get the conversion rates high enough, the huge traffic potential makes these promising channels for those who know how to use them.
As I said, success is going to depend on your company, which is why you’ll need to find ways to…
How you measure success is going to depend on what your goals are, and links aren’t necessarily the only thing you should be taking into consideration. However, assuming it’s all about search engine authority, you’ll need to be thinking about:
- Time invested in the ad campaigns
- Time that would have been invested in outreach for the same results
- The financial value of the time invested in either
- The possibility that ads and outreach can work together as multipliers
- The link diversity, the quality of the site sites that link, the domain and page authority of the links, the relevance of the link pages and anchor text, the number of referrals from the links, and the quality of the referral traffic
- The actual impact on rankings
Clearly, metrics are never as clean in this industry as we’d like them to be, but here are a few ways to make things cleaner (I’m considering outreach a “channel” as well):
- Track which channels are used on which posts, and the number of hours invested in each channel toward that post
- Vary which channels are being used to what extent, and randomly choose one channel to avoid using at all for each post
- Over time, look for correlations between the number of hours invested in each tactic, and the results
- Examine whether a mixture of strategies results in a different impact than either of the strategies acting alone
- When possible, compare metrics between posts that went live at the same time
This is not nearly as clean as straightforward A/B testing, but it can be hard to justify using only one channel for each post. Even when you can, you still have to recognize that the content of each post is different, and this is going to have an impact on your results. You can only compensate for this by testing the results on a large number of posts.
Another Use for Paid Traffic
What many online marketers don’t realize is that paid traffic can also be used to test content. All too often, a piece of content goes live and falls flat on its face. If you’ve invested in particularly large amount of time in a piece of content, it may be worth the effort to test its effectiveness using paid traffic. In this way, you can test the content before it is released the general public.
Is it worth it to buy awareness as a method of building links? My experience tells me that it probably will be useful for most businesses to divert some of their funds in this direction. The most important aspect of this is making sure the ads are only displayed and written for influencers, the kind of people who will link to and share content. Other advertising dollars will probably be better spent on direct conversions.
However, it’s equally important to recognize that advertising channels become increasingly saturated over time, and ad blindness is a growing concern. Investing in relationships is a skill that can’t be outright replaced with ad money.
Do you think it’s worth it to buy traffic as a link building method?
Image credit: joiseyshowaa