Google Local Listings Paid Ads

Google Local Listings have gone through many changes lately.  To get your business site listed in the 7-pack of free ads is long gone.

A while ago Google decided to ditch its popular local 7-pack in favor of a smaller 3-pack. However, things are set to change once again as the search engine giant ditches one organic local listing and replaces it with a paid ad.

The result? Well, now it’s a 2-pack PLUS an ad, making it much more difficult for businesses to appear in the top listings organically in the Google Local Listings.

Ad space will now be sold to the highest bidder

That all important third spot on Google’s original 3-pack, is now open to all businesses. It was already difficult enough for businesses to reach the top 3, so with 33% of that ad space now being offered up to the highest bidder, it opens the door for AdWords users to claim their space there.

Some experts feel that there are some disadvantages to this recent change; one being that Google is now set to gain a lot more revenue as businesses are forced to pay to appear in that third space.

They argue that:

  • Good, genuine businesses could be penalized
  • Users will have a worse search experience
  • There will likely be an increase in grey tactics as businesses try desperately to get ahead of their competitors

It does appear to be a confusing step backwards by the search giant. Google has taken several measures over the past decade to ensure its search results are more relevant. Now, it appears to be focusing more upon its own profits than it does providing relevant, useful results.

What can businesses do?

So what should you do to increase your chances of being shown in Google’s local listing results? Unless your listings are already ranking highly, you may need to consider paying.

Paid AdWords campaigns are a great effective way to ensure you are showing up in relevant searches. The great thing about AdWords is you can control your budget. Limit the amount you’re willing to spend on AdWords campaigns each day and keep track of how certain keywords are working for you.

When done right, AdWords can be an incredibly successful and powerful marketing tool. Of course, the change also gives you the opportunity to gain more exposure in the top spots, providing you’re willing to spend more. You could end up occupying the top organic spot and the top paid spot if you work hard enough.

The change to the Google 3-pack is going to present more challenges to local businesses overall. However, you can limit the damage, as well as gain the competitive advantage simply by leveraging the power of AdWords campaigns.

Effective Practices to Optimize Your Web Content for Google’s Crawlers and Human Visitors

Online content marketing requires dynamic SEO features in any website for the desired flow of web traffic to boost business outcomes. It is inevitable to include SEO components in any vibrant marketing endeavor with the rising competition in the market. An SEO-based website with dynamic content augurs well with top search engines like Google, which searches for these elements in their web page ranking exercises.

Search Engine Algorithm Dynamics

The progressive technologies of today brings along new waves of marketing solutions which are beneficial to web consumers and marketers. Popular search engines like Google are proactive in updating their search algorithms to keep up with the new technologies emerging in the marketplace.

The new updates to Google’s search engine algorithm over various seasons have kept SEO specialists and webmasters busy in updating their websites with the changing demands of the search engine giant in order to be fully compliant with the stringent requirements for high web page rankings. Businesses are scurrying to update their online practices and websites to resonate with new updates which the search engine spider might be seeking after.

Website owners are now obliged to convince Google spiders that their website is worthy of repeated visits to draw in the desired constant flow of web traffic for more sales and branding exposure in the market.

Ways to Optimize Web Content

Webmasters and website owners today need to optimize their websites constantly from outward appearance to inward content. There are 7 effective practices which are available to optimize web content on the web pages that would augur well with search engine crawlers and web visitors who would want to visit the pages repeatedly.

Optimum Keyword Density

Although good keywords are essential to dynamic SEO marketing in web content, an over stuffing of keywords could be stifling for the website. It used to be an effective technique to have as many keywords placed in the content as possible to secure high rankings in SERP listings but that trend is now obsolete and frowned upon.

An overstuffing of keywords in the content makes it difficult for web readers to appreciate the content which does not contribute to the latest market trend and consumer demand on an enlightening online experience by web consumers. Hence, keywords are not only to be wisely chosen, but appropriately positioned across the content piece in optimum density that promotes the web page and message.

Moreover, an overstuffing of keywords in the content today could lead to an activation of penalty by Google.

Identify Target Audience

Web content could be more effective and impactful if the right target audience is identified. It is always easier to write content with a specific audience group in mind as there are distinct elements of needs identified which the contents could satisfy.

Moreover, with a well-defined target audience, the marketer could identify the specific needs which would help select the best or more relevant keywords that would draw these web consumers to the site. This is part of a dynamic web content strategy which skilled marketers practice constantly for better business results.

Identifying the target audience would require a market survey of the latest and most up-to-date information on target consumers’ needs, wants and preferences. This information would help marketers identify the best of keywords or phrases which would catch the attention of web customers targeted to enjoy a higher chance of success with these consumers.

Such a market research could also help the marketer develop content that is relevant, useful and value added to the targeted web consumers for a quicker and higher sales conversion that would bring in more sales and earnings.

Exercise On-page SEO

On-page search engine optimization techniques require the rampant inclusion of on-page SEO elements that include a catchy title, appropriate Meta description, headline tags, Meta tags, page URLs and image Alt tags that would boost the content presentation at a website.

When the proper on-page SEO elements are incorporated aptly in the website body contents, the page becomes attractive to search engines which would accord a higher page ranking to it. This in turn would draw more web traffic to the website to boost sales and branding in the market.

Fulfilling Promises

Fulfilling promises are part and parcel of stellar customer services for any business that want to make a dynamic impact on their web customers. This would enhance the web user online experience which is a plus point for search engine higher rankings.

Satisfied consumers would tend to return for repeat sales while possibly spread the word around to their circles of contact with the best services and value-added offers by the company or brand. Otherwise, a negative user experience could be detrimental to the survival or growth of the company.

Cross Linking

Cross-linking is a dynamic online marketing tool which marketers and webmasters should employ for more traffic to their websites. Various web pages are cross linked to ensure that web users directed to the page are able to navigate around the website easily and quickly for a good view of the business offerings which may attract them into a purchase.

It is important to plan the cross linking strategy properly to be aligned to the marketing strategy and campaign for greater effectiveness. A dynamic cross-linking strategy serves to direct web visitors through the right sales channel smoothly for the right call-to-action response to benefit the business bottom line.

Readable Content

Web users today are constantly in a rush to spend time on reading long contents, especially if the contents are not well presented or interesting, even though there may be lots of gems offered by the company.

Marketers need to present good content in a dynamic presentation that would captivate readers from start to finish before compelling them to the desired call-to-action response.

Maintain a Good Flow

There should always be a natural and smooth flow of the contents presented that would help the web reader enjoy and digest the business message. This would require a clutter-free content presentation that attracts even the approval of search engines.

SEO made easy...coming soon....Where does your business appear on Google when potential customers search for your chosen keywords? If you’re not at the top – or near the top – it can be frustrating. There is plenty of evidence to show that very few users venture beyond the first page of results when they do a Google search. In fact, they’re more likely to refine their search than to move on to the next page.

Fortunately, there are quite a few things you can do to help your website rank on the first page in 2016. Here are the top five.

#1: Worry more about authority than keywords

It’s still important to use keywords in your web content, but the days when high keyword density was the key to ranking on Google are long gone. In fact, your keyword placement is not nearly as important as the overall authority of your site. Google’s algorithms are very sophisticated, and they no longer rely on keywords in a title or H1 tag to determine if a page is worth visiting. Rather, they focus on contextual meaning and look for expected words to rank pages.

For example, it used to be that if you wanted to rank for a keyword such as “Best Legal Services” you’d have to use that keyword three or four times in strategic places to have a chance of ranking. Now, if you talk about competent legal representation, Google can tell that your page is relevant to the keyword even if you don’t use it more than a couple of times in your article.

#2: Pay attention to bounce rates and the time spent on your page

Another surprising SEO development for 2016 has to do with an evaluation of whether your page is providing visitors with what they need. In addition to crawling your page for keywords and context, Google also pays attention to what people do after they leave your page as a way of determining if your page is an authoritative one or a waste of time.

For example, if a visitor searches one of your keywords and clicks on your page, Google looks at how long they stay. A visit of several minutes might indicate that a user is engaged with the content on your page and has found what they want. However, if they spend several minutes on your site, return to their list of search results via the dreaded back button, and click on another site instead, it’s a good sign that your site did not offer what they needed.

If you have a high bounce rate, a good way to improve your search ranking in 2016 is to make sure that your site provides the answers to the questions implied by your chosen keywords.

#3: Optimize your website for mobile users

In 2015, mobile searches on Google outpaced computer searches – and that trend is likely to continue. Google has placed a great deal of importance on mobile search as evidenced by their Mobilegeddon mobile-friendly update in early 2015. If your site isn’t mobile friendly, now is the time to get on board.

Fortunately, most businesses can switch to mobile-friendly or (ideally) mobile-adaptive sites with little trouble. Sometimes it’s as simple as switching the template you use for your site. For example, if you have a WordPress site, they have a huge library of templates available, many of which are mobile-adaptive. You may have to do some fine-tuning of your site to make a new template work, but it’s worth the work to get it done.

The beauty of mobile-adaptive sites is that they work by configuring to the specific mobile device being used. Mobile customers tend to be an impatient bunch, and they are unlikely to wait for a slow-loading page or scroll horizontally to read your content. If you take the time to optimize your site for mobile users, it can do more than anything else to improve your search ranking in 2016.

#4: Stay away from content that’s too short

It wasn’t that long ago that blog posts of 250 to 500 words were considered the norm. Short and snappy was the rule of the day, and the assumption that people wanted short content led to a glut of short articles that were light on value and meaning.

That has all changed. Truthfully, the trend toward lengthy web content has been happening for a while, but this year it has really become the rule rather than the exception. Research shows that web users are far more likely to engage with content that’s in the 1,000-1,500 word range than with short articles. Why? Because they want valuable information, and – with rare exception – it’s hard to convey that in just a few hundred words. Of course you can offer a top 10 list that’s only 500 words long, but you’re not going to be able to explain why items are on the list as well as you would if you wrote a longer article or blog post.

The reason that Google is placing so much emphasis on length is that they want to make sure they are sending people to pages designed for humans, not search algorithms. If you’re worried about publishing long content, remember that you can make it more readable by breaking it up with subheadings and images.

#5: Make sure the user experience is front and center

In a way, this last point is a summary of everything that has come before it. Each one of the above points comes back to one thing: user experience. Old-school SEO focused on tricking Google’s algorithms – to the point where many websites were far friendlier to computers than they were to human beings. More and more, Google is concerned about ensuring that their search results are leading users to sites that answer their questions. They want users to feel good about the search experience, something that’s unlikely to happen if they end up on a site that’s not mobile friendly, or is packed with keywords but contains no real value.

There are many things you can do to test the user experience on your site, including split-testing individual components on your page. However, the best thing you can do is to do what you can to answer key questions that are implied by your chosen keywords, and make sure that your site is easily viewable by any user, on any device.

Conclusion

Ranking on the first page of Google is always a challenge. Regardless of your niche, you will be facing some fierce competition. It might sound odd to say this, but the best way to rank is to forget about trying to rank. Don’t worry about algorithms and SEO tricks. Instead, focus on making your site a place where potential customers can find exactly what they need. If you do that, the search rank will follow.

 

 

SEO made easy...coming soon....Search engine optimization (SEO) plays a critical role in the building up of a business or brand today. This marketing strategy forms a dynamic aspect of the web business site that would bring in higher gains if the proper on-page SEO tips and tricks are deployed.

Improving Website Visibility

Every website on the Internet is present to be viewed by web consumers and market authorities that would nod in approval in generating market awareness of the brand and business. This is where the website would aim to achieve search engine optimization performance through on-page and off-page SEO elements.

On-page SEO forms the primary component of any vital SEO marketing strategy that should be included in any dynamic online marketing campaign. Marketers and business owners could deploy various on-page SEO tips and tricks to enjoy greater website optimization that would bring on higher gains and stay on the good side of popular search engines’ SERP listing.

This is obvious from the constant changes Google makes on its search algorithm over the past decade. Good page rankings come from the compliance of web pages with the latest search spider demands as found in Google’s Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird.

Tip 1 – Optimize website speed

One of the first tasks to be activated for a more effective on-page SEO marketing campaign is to optimize the website speed on loading files and information. A slow loading tends to put off potential web consumers to drive them towards the competition besides adversely impacting the search engine ranking for the website.

Webmasters need to evaluate the website speed in comparison to their competitors’. With the increasing market competition, it is vital to offer better services to the same targeted niche markets through faster speeds for a more enhanced online experience by web visitors.

Changes or updates to the website could be activated through an upgrade of relevant files depending on the type of website originally created. A custom HTML website or even PHP-based site should reconsider the present CSS and JS files that should be minified via an appropriate script. This action leads to a prompt reduction in file size that enables a faster loading of the website for better optimization.

This is also feasible in optimizing images on the website where compression is deployed without losing out on quality. Images tend to slow down the loading time of a website, albeit a few seconds.

WordPress websites on a dynamic CMS system work well with a fast loading when an appropriate cache plug-in is installed. These are static files that increase the loading speed of the website for a more pleasant online experience for web users.

Tip 2 – Meta Tags and Tags on Website

Meta tags still offer some influence on web pages to draw the attention of search engines for higher rankings. This would refer to the website title tag which is the primary text displayed on the browser bar when the targeted website is accessed.

Meta tags should be implemented for keywords and keyword descriptions at each web page for an easier identification and understanding of the page contents. Web visitors would spend less time deciphering the content or context of the page content with these Meta tags to make intelligent favorable purchase decisions quickly.

The presence of these Meta tags help search engines identify the context of the web pages to warrant higher page rankings that would attract more web traffic based on the targeted keywords. Many web consumers accept the recommendation of the search engines readily when searching on the web. Hence, the right tags should be implemented on every web page where possible to increase the chances of a higher ranking by top search engines. This is a big advantage for on-page SEO websites.

Header tags and sub-header tags should be deployed for a more structured web page which facilitates better legibility and understanding of the page contents by web visitors. These are great SEO tools to improve the content layout to attract more visitors to the business brand. Such components could also be implemented on images that would encourage a more dynamic indexing by top search engines for a more successful search.

Tip 3 – Keyword-optimized Content

A high page ranking by top search engines require high quality content consisting of targeted keywords that make the search more dynamic and successful. It is critical for marketers and business owners to consider the best of target keywords or phrases that would help web consumers find what they are looking for via popular search engines.

Every content development should be preceded with a keyword research. The preferred keyword should be low in market density or intensity that does not have a high competition while being suitable to represent the chosen topic to be written. There should be a sufficient search volume of the preferred keyword for a successful and fast search on the Internet.

Sometimes, long-tail keywords may be more appropriate on certain topics or content pages to entice more web traffic. The optimal targeted keywords should be included in the web pages that would be frequented by web visitors at the right locations with the right frequencies which attract more visitors.

Tip 4 – Incorporating Backlinks

Backlinks are known to be dynamic marketing components in any SEO marketing endeavor where good links pointing back to the website are highly favored by top search engines. The presence of these backlinks in various reputed websites or blogs boosts the favor of top search engines to confer higher page rankings to the website.

Marketers and webmasters need to incorporate good backlinks at high quality websites or reputed marketing platforms that would cause search spiders to accord higher page rankings on the site or web pages.

Conclusion

When the best of on-page SEO tips is implemented in the website, it is easy to take advantage of the available SEO benefits as a domino effect is activated. Dynamic SEO websites require time and effort to be built and upgraded via emerging technologies that would draw in the desired web traffic consistently.

Your 15-Day SEO Roadmap

SEO made easy...coming soon....While organic search results are always desirable, the amount of time most companies spend on SEO is minimal. If you’re lost or confused as to what you should be doing to get those organic listings, if you spend just an hour a day, the following is a 15-day SEO roadmap that should get you on your way.

Day 1: Defining Goals

Benjamin Franklin said, “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.” Those words are just as true when it comes to your marketing plans. You need to set goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, results-focused, and timed (S.M.A.R.T). An effective marketing plan will include short, medium, and long-term goals.

Day 2: Verifying Goals are Achievable

While settings goals is the first step, it’s not the only one. While the goal of a business may be to increase sales, it should also be determined what part of those sales should come from organic search results and to then measure the growth.

Day 3: Identifying Additional Keywords

It’s important to target keywords that can generate the kind of traffic that you will need to make your sales goals. But you will need to continue to monitor those keywords and search for variations that people may be looking for. Your website analytics may also reveal keywords that people are finding your website from that you may not have even considered.

Day 4-5: On-Page Review

On-page SEO is crucial to the foundation of your SERPs. Poor on-page optimization can even hinder your off-page efforts. Your focus for on-page SEO should be on two areas: technical issues and keyword optimization.

Day 6-8: Creating Content

Your site’s content is the best way to promote your business. Write about topics that are useful and compelling. Search for topics that are currently performing well and write about them. Not sure where to start? You can use a tool like Buzzsumo to find content for topics that are performing well currently.

Day 9-11: Fixing On-Page SEO

This is the time to fix any technical or keyword issues for your content. Focus on the on-page SEO for your new articles before publishing and promoting them.

Day 12: Content Promotion Prospecting

After creating and publishing your content, you will need to find people to link to it. Tools like Majestic will identify websites already linking to similar content. A search of your primary keywords/topics will produce a list of sites for you to put into a spreadsheet. Find a contact name and email for each of these sites. You will want a list of at least 200 contacts.

Day 13-14: Promoting Content

You will now want to contact each of the 200 contacts you uncovered yesterday. A tool, such as Sidekick, will allow you to track the email opens and clicks. Create a template that will allow you to easily insert the relevant information for each contact.

After contacting each of the 200 contacts, go back to Buzzsumo and find others that are sharing similar information and contact them as well.

Day 15: Repeating Regularly

Depending on the success of your initial campaign, you will start the process over again either from day 3 where you are identifying additional keywords or day 12 where you are discovering additional promotional opportunities.