One of the most commonly cited explanations business failures is that owners couldn’t get the word out about their business.
Word-of-mouth advertising tactics are excellent ways to encourage local clientele, but if you need to extend your customers to people who don’t drive past your storefront every day, a word-of-mouth approach might lead to low sales and closed doors.
So you have a website. Well, that’s a great first step. But you need to make sure your website reaches the people you want it to reach. Otherwise, they won’t even know your site exists, let alone buy something from it.
KEYWORDS AS MARKETING TOOLS
You can add keywords to your content to ensure prospective clients become actual clients. But how do you decide which keywords will launch your website and grab your audience’s attention? Well, the first thing you need to understand is the difference between short- and long-tail keywords.
You have a basic understanding simply by knowing their names: short-tail keywords contain only one or two words while long-tail keywords contain longer phrases. But let’s get a little bit more in depth for a better understanding.
SHORT TAILS: KEYWORDS
Let’s say that you want to find a new restaurant in Chicago. A short-tail keyword like “Chicago restaurant” or “deep dish pizza,” will garner thousands, of results. That’s because nearly every restaurant in the Second City and its deep dish pizza dispensaries want those keywords. They know that when people Google material, most use just a few, obvious words to request information, and “Chicago restaurant” or “deep dish pizza” represent popular search terms for the area because they are so simple and direct.
However, as you know all too well, it’s easy to find popular keywords. The much more difficult task is to find a keyword that will rank your website higher on those search results. Since so many people search for them, short-tail keywords can represent a wildly competitive market. While you may use the most popular keywords, the hundreds of other websites that use the same keywords may drown you out.
LONG TAILS: KEYWORDS
On the other hand, long-tail keywords have a lower search volume because they add specificity. For example, “restaurant Chicago,” would shift to “affordable Chinese restaurant Chicago.” These additions do two things for you:
However, long-tail keywords do have drawbacks. In addition to the smaller pool of searchers, they can be too specific. Most people use as few words as possible as they search, so if you require too much from them, you may not get their online traffic.
Additionally, the longer the keyword, the more awkward it can sound when you use it in your content. Nothing is more important than your website’s quality content, so consider how the keyword will affect readability before you implement it.
Whether you choose a short- or long-tail keyword, you take a gamble. While more people search for short tail keywords, your site may get lost in the search result melee.
SO, WHAT CAN YOU DO? THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Don’t just contemplate popular search terms. Instead, take a moment to think about your business. If you were a client, what would you search for? Are they searching for your services when they face an emergency? If you offer environmental clean-up services, you may want to use keywords such as “clean up gasoline spill” instead of “environmental company.”
Clients tend to use search terms that reflect how your business impacts them, not necessarily what your company is. Ask what they need from you, and the answer may be your best keyword.
WEAVE YOUR KEYWORDS SEAMLESSLY
As we mentioned in the Long Tail section, content is essential to your website. Place your keywords so they sound as natural as possible. If your online visitors can spot awkward keywords from a mile away, they might not continue reading.
Remember that you don’t have to choose between long- and short-tail keywords. Use both. Track your statistics to see which keywords do the most work for you, and adjust your web strategy accordingly.
You may need an SEO specialist’s help to complete this task. When you speak with them, they can give you advice on the keywords will give you the best return on investment so your business can stay successful for years to come contact the Mosaic Team we have experts is Search Engine Marketing.
1. Element optimization.
For any given element on a page — for instance, the headline — you can test to find the best version. This is the lowest level of landing page optimization. It’s important in the context of a particular page, but in the big scheme of things, it delivers the least overall value.
2. Page optimization.
This is what is usually meant by “landing page optimization”. It’s about finding the right combination of elements — each of which gets optimized — as well as the best layout and design of the overall page. This can have a significant impact on the performance of a specific page, and if you do this
across all of your online marketing, it can contribute a noticeable bump to
marketing’s overall results.
Enlightened Landing Page Optimization
3. Path optimization.
A page is merely a single step along a path — one that starts with the ad or email that the respondent clicked on and carries through to the second and third pages the user clicks on and beyond. Optimizing the path is about
message match and expectation management to make the prospect’s
overall experience the best it can be. Optimizing at this level lets you leap ahead of competitors who are stuck in the disconnected underbrush of individual pages.
4. Segment optimization.
Not all clicks are equal. Different respondents arrive with different needs and varying frames of reference. At this next level up, you start optimizing different paths to cater to those different audiences. With this optimization, you can reveal tremendous insights about who your customers are and how they view themselves and their interest in your company. These discoveries not
only improve your conversion rate for specific paths — they can help optimize your segmentation strategy at a higher level too. Big dividends.
5. Campaign optimization.
Even as “campaigns” are giving way to a more fluid marketing environment, there are still different initiatives in the field that connect certain messages, offers, audiences, and tactics with common threads. At the campaign level, landing page optimization becomes about matching the right pages
and paths with the right slices of the campaign, and using the front-line results to inform and improve overall campaign effectiveness. It requires
coordination and continuity . Even in large enterprises, this is where the outcomes are now visible to senior management.
Advanced Landing Page Optimization
6. Operations optimization.
At this level, landing page optimization is about maximizing the efficiency of your overall landing page capabilities. How good is your landing page management for producing, organizing, and optimizing landing pages across all your different campaigns? This is about increasing your cycle speed and reducing your per-page and per-path overhead. The more optimized you can make your landing page management processes, the more optimization you can execute at the tactical levels below.
7. Strategy optimization.
At the very top of the pyramid, the focus is on optimizing the big picture marketing strategy. At this level, landing page optimization becomes abstracted from the gory details, but it makes two very important contributions: (1) the option to execute highly segmented strategies and (2) the ability to quickly test strategic assumptions in micro-campaigns and to use that learning to optimize the overall strategy.
The difference between this more strategic landing page optimization and traditional landing page optimization can mean the difference between myopia (i.e., optimizing the deck chairs on the Titanic) and visionary marketing leadership.
Landing page optimization in the big picture isn’t just important. It’s very important.
For More information visit: www.mosaic247.net
The job of search engines such as Google, AOL, Yahoo! and others is simple: Deliver relevant results to searchers. This is also a very complicated task.
1) There are literally billions of web pages out there, and tens of thousands being added every day,
2) EVERYONE wants to be number one, and
3) Many people “cheat” to get higher rankings
To deal with these issues, search engines have developed increasingly complex mathmatical formulas to determine relevancy for different search terms. These formulas, called algorithms, are at the core of what search engines do. For example, when you go to Google and type in “Seattle restaurants” you get a list of almost 100,000 web pages that Google has determined are relevant. This list is different from the one you would have gotten a year ago. Not only because of all the new web pages that did not exist then, but also because Google has changed its algorithm. In theory, the results it gives you will improve over time as their engineers make changes to its formula.
Adjusting your web pages for higher ranking is called “search engine optimizing” or SEO. This highly specific set of skills includes modifiying meta tags, changed the copy on the page, acquiring in-bound links, researching keywords, and other such things. It’s following all the rules of the search engines while putting the best possible face on your web site. Be aware that shady optimizing techniques risk having a site banned entirely, so it is very important to stay abreast of the rules of the game, and never do anything to damage a site’s ranking.
Because people try to manipulate the rankings, the search engines are constantly revising their algorithm to detect the latest cheating technique.
Just how DO they rank sites, anyway?
It is important to remember that the algorithms themselves are closely guarded trade secrets. Other than the basic information given by the engines themselves, most of what we know about how sites are ranked comes from years of observing the search engine results pages, or SERPS. There is also a lot of reverse engineering going on. People will put up several almost identical sites and make tiny changes to each one, then watch the SERPS.
It’s also important to distinguish between paid and non-paid results. “Search engine ranking” generally refers to objective results determined by the engines themselves. These are also called “organic results”. You cannot buy placement in these results. You can, however, purchase advertising space in the designated ad area. When you search at Yahoo!, for example, you will see the “Sponsor Results” at the top and right side of the page. The sites listed here paid for this placement. The organic, objective results are numbered and begin below the advertisements. You will see the same thing at Google, where the paid listings are called “Sponsored Links”. When people talk about pay-per-click advertising, this is what they are referring to.
In an effort to deliver relevant results, most search engines look at many factors. Google, for example, cites over 100 factors in determining ranking. Most engines use similar criteria though, including Title, Keyword, and Description tags, on-page copy, in-bound links, percentage of a given keyword throughout the page, and freshness of content. Also weighed are features of the site such as a search function, out-bound links to related sites, text links, and of course relevant content.
A few years ago the meta tags were weighed very heavily by most engines. However these tags, which are not visible to the viewer but are easily modified by the webmaster, are easy to use in a misleading fashion. More and more the search engines are relying on factors that are not easily abused, and most important of these are inbound links. Links are important because they are a somewhat objective measure of a site’s popularity and legitimacy. Google is largely credited with creating this technique.
“PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the web by using its vast link structure as an indicator of an individual page’s value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. But, Google looks at more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves “important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.””
Copy on the page is also weighed heavily since it’s tough to have a page about one topic while the words on the page refer to another topic. You will still see gibberish pages out there displaying thousands of random words in an effort to generate traffic that is redirected to other sites, but for the most part the SERPS are giving ever more relevant results due to changes like these.
If you build it (fairly) they will come
While each search engine has different methods of ranking web pages (Google values inbound links quite a lot, while Yahoo has recently placed additional value on Title tags and domain names), in the end all search engines strive to deliver relevant results. As long as you optimize your site honestly, fill it with content that is related to your business, and get inbound links from relevant websites, you will stand a good chance for ranking high in SERPS.
Remember, time is your friend. Over time you should be acquiring in-bound links, getting listed in the major search engines and directories as well as specialty search engines, and of course, building a quality site. As search engine algorithms evolve, they will do their jobs better and better, weeding out the cheaters and presenting the most relevant sites to their users. With a little work and some patience, the search engines will find you and your ranking will increase.
Consumers today want it all. Their relentless demand for a more satisfying online experience has forced many integrated marketers to reevaluate—and increasingly, overhaul—website look, feel and function. If such an website redesign is in your future, share these seven steps with your developer and creative team to simplify and streamline the process.
Regardless of how you feel about it, the maxim “you can’t manage what you can’t measure” should be top of mind in every content marketing conversation.
Tracking these five performance indicators to determine whether your content is a boon or a bust with prospects:
1. Traffic: the number of people who visit the page on which your content resides. Factors that move this metric include: your number of social followers; size and quantity of your email database; how highly search engines rank the page (for quality and relevance), which you can learn more about in this Google Hummingbird post).
2. Engagement: the duration and quality of user interaction with content are measured by indicators such as bounce rates, time on site (or page), and abandonment rates. Comments, feedback forms, and even results from your search box provide supplemental insight into visitors’ content likes, dislikes and preferences.
3. Social Shares: that good (relevant, useful, credible, interesting) content gets shared is a universal truth among social networks. If you’re active on social media, set aside time each week to measure activity and results.
4. Backlinks: the quality and authority of pages that link back to your content are another measurement of success. Connections to reputable, legitimate sources help in a big way. Linking to questionable sites (those with no traffic or Google Page Rank, for example) can hurt your content marketing efforts.
5. Conversion Rates: content’s ultimate goal is conversions, which marketers define as moving visitors to take some action, such as: request information; schedule a demo or appointment; download a brochure; or perhaps best of all, place an order. You can increase conversion rates by making the desired action clear, quick and easy, with simple navigation as well as “visual cues” that might include the (judicious) use of colored buttons, frames or other graphic elements.
View our full archive of content marketing posts for more tips on creating, promoting and leveraging your content.