Posts Tagged ‘SEO’

Disappointed with Your SEO? Join the club…

April 13, 2008

There was a commercial that ran several years ago.  A group of people bunched around the computer screen as their web site finally went live.  Everyone was concentrating on the visitor counter and a cheer went up when the first couple of visitors were counted.  The counter went up to 15 then 20 and there was a good deal of backslapping all around.  Apparently a well optimized site with the orders for products starting to come in steadily…then suddenly there was this burst of visitors and the orders were skyrocketing one hundred, two hundred, several thousand…

The merriment stopped.  The group looked at each other.  They had problems processing that many orders.  No one had ever planned for such overwhelming success.  Fade out to brand advertising how they could handle that volume of orders.

Within 60 seconds, that commercial did more to set up the wrong expectations for SEO than any other commercial I know.  Talking with a web developer and host provider this week, he talked about how many of his clients are disappointed after a week being online that they’re site is not on page one of Google.

Those of us who have been in the search engine optimization business know this story all too well.  Pay up with PPC (pay-per-click) to get on page 1 of Google and/or begin to optimize the site for a long term steady march to the top of the organic rankings.

Many times I find that PPC companies out there deride the efforts of SEO companies for taking the slow steady approach and advocating such to our clients.  I suppose that’s due to a few SEO type companies out there pitching an unrealistic scenario or over-promising results for a too good to be true price.  In fact last week the word came out about another web design/seo company – Internet Advancement – that over-promised and under-performed but this time may have to pay up to $450,000 in restitution! 

The argument on the net right now is how we need standards.  Yes we need companies practicing good business standards, but its tough to establish a firm set of standards when the dynamics of good SEO changes.  I agree that company’s advertising services as SEO companies need to step up and deliver good value and good business ethics.  In fact, web design companies and all internet related businesses should follow commonly accepted practices for good business.  Eventually the company’s who do not, go out of business, but at what expense to the hopes and dreams of those huddled around the computer screen waiting for those orders to fall from the cyber-sky?

Setting expectations is one of the most significant and decent things SEO companies can do for potential clients.  Not all businesses ranked on page one pull in the big bucks – especially if they rank on only one keyword term or phrase.  It takes a lot more effort than just gaining rankings in order to build a successful online marketing campaign.  Content, call to action and a focused effort to build a web site into a useful, socially accepted site is a good start, but let’s be realistic when we go out there and meet with clients.  They are not going to see an amazing increase in business overnight.  The good news is that they we can and do help them build a sustainable revenue stream with search engine optimization (more accurate with web site optimization) with time and effort.

Jessica Faltot
President
Top SEO Marketing, Inc.
Driving Business Results
www.topseomarketing.com

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Keywords – Don’t be to quick to change

April 10, 2008

When we look at our website performance and rankings, sometimes we feel that we need to keep changing out our keywords and re-optimizing our sites. If good keyword research was done before Search Engine Optimization and you are not seeing any improvement in traffic or rankings for your keywords, then content may be where you need to go next. Having your site re-optimized around the same keywords will not do any good. You need to look at your content and make sure it is including your keywords that you performed optimization on already. Some SEO companies will change out the keywords to words people have usedto find your site. This will make your numbers look good for awhile, but it really is not giving you the best SEO service. Anyone can see what is used to bring traffic today, but the trick is to find keywords that drive valuable traffic to your site that turns into conversions.

Michelle Smith

Director of Campaigns

Top SEO Marketing Inc.

Your customer is your audience on-line

March 13, 2008

I was talking to a friend last night about his web site. We were discussing – what is it that you are trying to sell  or what services are you trying to offer? That is the first thing you need to ask yourself before you start any search engine marketing work on your site. When someone walks into a store they are able to quickly see what you have to offer, well the same needs to be portrayed on your web site. Your web site must capture the audience’s attention right away and give them a sense of what you offer. Your site must have good information that portrays those offerings. You should not ever create web pages just for search engine rankings, because they are not going to use your services or buy your products. A Search Engine Marketing Firm can concentrate on the back end  SEO Services allowing you to work on keeping your true customers in mind by giving them value in your content throughout your site. Remember to keep your content original and informative that will meet the customer’s search engine queries and bring you business.

Michelle Smith

Top SEO Marketing

Top SEO Marketing, Inc.

February 29, 2008

Yahoo! Search Assist

Top SEO Marketing, Inc.

Keywords, keeping up with the Search Engines

February 27, 2008

Yahoo has recently released Yahoo! Search Assist. When the user types in the Search Box, Yahoo! Search Assist anticipates what they’re looking for and offers additional suggestions on the original typed search word. So in other words, they are defining new keyword terms that may apply to what the user is looking for. One of the benefits in using a Search Engine Marketing Company is that they continually perform the research needed to keep your keywords up to date with the Search Engine’s keywords used most to help customers easily find what they are looking for. Search Engine Optimization includes keyword research but also includes keeping up with the ever changing Search Engines to be sure the customer always receives the attention needed to keep and improve rankings for their web sites.

Michelle Smith

Top SEO Marketing Inc.

Go Local Young Man – Local Search Marketing That Is.

February 18, 2008

The buzz for once is deserved.  Those small businesses who can take advantage of local search engine marketing or put their business in the top local search engines will share a disproportionate amount of the opportunity.  If and this is a big if…they aren’t taken advantage of first.

We work with clients who have encountered what I term, “useless spending” online because they didn’t do their homework first.  The one word that came out of the first local search marketing symposium was “confusion”.  Everyone thinks they know the magic formula.  Everyone thinks that they can influence the market. But how many of them are truly aware of the reality small business owners go through trying to survive.

Sure I believe that only a handful of people come home from work, see the big books on their doorstep and shout, “Yippee!  The new Yellow Pages are here.  Thank goodness now I can find the name and number of a good landscaper, or whomever.”

I think reality is that most people have gotten so spoiled by the ease, comfort and information on the internet that its only natural to turn to Google or Yahoo Local to find a local plumber, landscaper, dentist or perhaps specialty clothing store in the neighborhood.

Even the TV ads are conveying this when they ask the “guru” about search engines and he answers, “we will place your ad in all the top search engines.”  Isn’t that next to admitting that online search engines are the place to really drive business locally?

Reality check, again.  Small business owners do not have deep pockets.  Small business owners need to be wary of those companies soliciting their local search business with promises of being featured in ads, promoted through obscure directories, or the promise to be on page 1 of Google within 24 hours, fine print spelling out that it’s really pay-per-click.  A few hundred bucks can be a big strain on a small business budget and the local search market can be confusing…now is the time to go Local but better to go into after doing some homework or don’t go at all.

Take a look at Google’s keyword tool if you are interested in PPC advertising for search engine marketing.  There are many other tools but this will get you started in the right direction.  For optimization via organic search, Top SEO Marketing has a number of programs customized for small business.

 Jessica Faltot
President
Top SEO Marketing, Inc.
www.topseomarketing.com
214-288-0853

Taming the PPC Monster with Organic Search

February 5, 2008
 Talked with someone last year whose part-time sideline with a web business had finally grown to allow him to quit his “real job” and begin working full-time with his online business.  This is a dream that I found many people share, but few truly experience so I had a great deal of admiration for his efforts.  (If you doubt that many people want this, just watch late at night infomercials and you’ll be amazed at how many there are on “work at home” or “get rich online”!  In fact, the one I watch during Christmas, the guy earned $17,000 his first month!  Unbelievable!  I was getting all caught up in it when suddenly I realized what other people who were not as savvy online as I am, must think!  Or better yet, do a search for get rich with online business in Google and see what comes up, it will amaze you.  Loved this one domain name www.21butrich.com)
Back to the search engine marketing story – Last year we discussed what organic search engine marketing might do for his business.  On one hand, I truly believed we could make a significant impact but on the other hand, I felt that “sticker shock” was a real possibility and maybe it might be best if he went ahead with his plans to advertise with only pay per click for awhile. It’s not that we are expensive, but if you don’t understand the market – he was very smart and it seemed that it might be best to let him experience a bit on his own first.
Now fast forward a year later.  In one year, he had become expert at managing his own pay-per-click campaigns.  He understood his market a lot better than last year and was successfully growing his business.  After reviewing his recent reports, I did some research to determine the impact today of an “organic search marketing” campaign, utilizing some of the most successful keyword terms.  I could see where last year his spend had been approximately $500.00/month on PPC and over the course of several months grew to around $1100/mo.  Several months ago it had jumped to $2200/mo.  No doubt this would continue to work, as long as he continued to feed the ppc monster that he had created.  His ROI was good, but not as good as what we were looking at providing him without the constant concern that it would cost him more every month.
Once a business does launch, there are certain things that need to happen.  Time needs to expand to around 36 hours a day in order to do everything we need to do.  Barring that, we have to look at adding employees to help us manage our business.  But in order to do that, you need a good baseline foundation of business in place.  One that is not going to require constant monitoring by you – control spending and drive down your cost per customer.  That’s where organic search comes into play.  Now he doesn’t have sticker shock over our managed search engine marketing services.  He can begin to pay attention to the additional  business issues and opportunities that come his way, while enjoying a sustainable sales channel via organic search engines driving the right, targeted business to his site without it costing him for every click.
Targeted traffic, increased income while driving the price of new client acquisitions down and not having to worry about continually feeding the PPC monster – but rather taming it to use when it is most advantageous for his business – without losing business when it runs out of budget or reaches a daily limit.
Both pay per click and organic SEO have a place in businesses media mix.  Laying a long term foundation (SEO) while taking advantage of the users out there today who are looking for your product.  This is also good for local search marketing as well, in order to get your site the attention it needs.
Jessica Faltot
President
Top SEO Marketing, Inc.
www.topseomarketing.com
Dallas  Texas
Specializing in Driving Business Results with SEO | RSEO | Local Search Marketing

Search Engine Optimization – The Tortoise and the Hare

February 3, 2008

 Organic Search Marketing company

In search engine marketing there are two distinct schools of thought.   The story about the tortise and the hare has some amazing similarities to search engine marketing.

First the hare:  Instant success!!!  Don’t we all want that?  Your company has paid its dues…you have a great product – you have a great service.   You know that all you need to do is get your message out there.  About eight years ago, I owned a web design company and talking with business owners it was not uncommon to hear them say that they knew they needed a www or a “dot com” but most did not fully appreciate or see the potential only a few years down the road.

Today with search engine marketing the hare quickly decides which avenue is best for his company, saying:

  • Pay Per Click can put me on page 1 of Google tomorrow!!!
  • Pay per click can make my business an overnight success!
  • I will be betting on hundreds of keyword combinations that will ensure my success!
  • I control the budget, and don’t pay until I get a prospect who clicks on my ad! What a deal.  I’ll be moving product by tomorrow night!
  • Pay Per Click is definitely the way I win the race!  Search engine optimization is way behind.

The Tortoise on the other hand, after pondering the pay per click path finally decides to run the optimization path in the race. 

  • Likes the long term results better and feels that it will result in more quality traffic than just a PPC campaign.
  • With Organic Search Marketing there is more control over your marketing spend budget.  You know how much it is going to cost.
  • More users like to click on the “organic” results than sponsored links.
  • While time is money, a good organic optimization company can minimize the downtime while targeting keywords that will rank faster. 
  • Organic search engine rankings will help the Tortoise gain credibility over the hare – as more often than not – the Tortoise will appear in multiple variations of important keyword phrases while the Hare may wind up running out of budget money by the middle of the month.
  • Finding a company like Top SEO Marketing (a shameless plug) makes organic marketing easy because they do all the work.

Which one is right for you?  Are both of them right, if used for multiple purposes?  Absolutely.  One is not better than the other – but sometimes the solution depends on the situation.  If you have a new product launch – pay per click may be the best solution.  If you are building a business and wanting a long term solution in place – working for you every day without costing additional cash – then organic search marketing may be the answer.  You can also research the benefits of local search marketing or geo-targeted “regional search marketing” to find the right combination.

Whatever you decide, thorough investigation will ensure that you don’t make the wrong and costly decision that could cost you the race!

The Tail of Search, Do we Really Need it? « Top SEO Marketing, Inc.

January 28, 2008

The Tail of Search, Do we Really Need it? « Top SEO Marketing, Inc.

Local Search Marketing Advantage

January 26, 2008
Say you are a small business owner who wants their web site to appear in their area of business locally.   You get most of your business from referrals, but it sure would be nice to have some presence within your town.  How do you go about getting your site established in the local search engines?  What do you do in order to take advantage of local search marketing?
First, you will need to examine your website.  Does it have good content or is it just flash or photos?  Content that describes your business, where you do business at (city, zip code, landmark locations – i.e. across from the courthouse on the square) are important.
Ask yourself what most people searching for your services is looking for when they search online.  What would you type into a search box to find a good dentist near where you live?  You’d want to know that they take great care to avoid pain and you’d want to know that they accept your insurance.  You should mention what type of dentistry you specialize in, or if you have a specialty, like children’s dentist.
People also want to know something about you.  So you want to make sure you have a page that talks about the dentist, maybe include a picture.
What people want to know is that other patients of yours had good experiences.   Solicit patient reviews of your services and ask them if they mind if you include it on your website.
The pages you have shouldn’t take a lot of time, we’re talking about 250 – 500 words max per page.  A big item to include as well is a page showing easy to find driving directions and a Google map.  Local search is all about geo-targeting, so be sure to have a page that includes how to find you, where you’re located as well as your physical address prominently displayed on every page.
When you have the opportunity to write in a title tag, make sure you also include your city or town.  Dentist – South Bend Indiana – for an example.
In your description (the part that actually shows up under your URL) make sure you clearly state Dentist Office, South Bend IN that believes in a pain free experience and has the patients to back that up!  Or something that gets people’s attention…it is your 30 second commercial, so make the most of it.
If you follow these fairly easy guidelines submission for local search marketing is also easy.  Google Maps, Yahoo Local and MSN Live are the main locations you want to be listed in.
I don’t want to get cross ways with the internet yellow pages, but my advice is to go with the free listing first and if you feel that a premium listing is justified, you can always add that later.  I would also stay away from smaller directories.  You will end up getting more junk email from them than real customers.
Jessica Faltot
President
Top SEO Marketing, Inc.
Driving Business Results through Search Optimization and Local Search Marketing