of the most popular and successful online marketing strategies are Pay Per
Click and Search Engine Optimization. Although both use keywords to direct
traffic to a specific website, they are very different marketing strategies.
They do not use keywords in the same way. If you are looking for new marketing
techniques for your business, then you need to familiarize yourself with both
What’s the Difference?
PPC marketing campaign is essentially a method of buying viewers for your
company’s website. It involves bidding on placing ads in the search results for
specific keyword combinations. An SEO marketing campaign is a particular method
of designing your company’s website so that it appears high in the search
results for a given set of keywords. SEO is focused on your company’s website.
PPC is focused upon what Internet users see when conducting searches.
there are a lot of factors involved, PPC is usually a little more profitable in
the short term. SEO is more profitable in the long term. SEO is also cheaper,
and Internet users tend to trust companies that use SEO instead of PPC a little
more. On the other hand, SEO is vulnerable to changes in search engine
algorithms and PPC is not.
campaigns are a little easier to run, in that they are very fault tolerant. In
other words, if you make some mistakes with the keywords you choose you can
still get good results. This is especially true ever since Google’s Hummingbird
update. Even if you make major mistakes in keyword selection, you can easily
tweak your company site and try again. PPC campaigns are not very fault
tolerant. Every keyword mistake costs money, sometimes a lot of money. PPC
campaigns require a lot of research work up front.
you do not have a lot of experience with Internet marketing campaigns, start
with SEO. It requires less understanding than PPC and risks less money. If your
company needs to increase sales quickly, then PPC is the better choice as long
as you can do it well. Using both strategies together, if possible, is best.
first step in an SEO campaign is to research the keyword landscape for your
company’s products or services. Every topic has its own keyword landscape,
which is a list of the keywords that people use most often when searching for
information on a particular topic. These keywords will either relate to the
topic as a whole or to some particular aspect of it. After determining the
keyword landscape you need to analyze each keyword carefully. What does it say
about the intent of people who are conducting the search? Does it indicate that
they are likely looking for other things that your company offers too? Does it
mean that they might theoretically be interested, but probably really want
something else? Once you have conducted this analysis you can write out a final
list of keywords that are specifically optimized for your SEO campaign.
an SEO campaign, you need to consider keyword depth for each page on your
company’s website. “Keyword depth” is an industry term that refers to
how specific or general the keyword is. The most general keywords belong on
your company’s home page. Conversely, the most specific keywords belong on the
lowest level pages, the pages that feature specific products or services. Do
not be tempted to use all the keywords that you can think of in the hope that
some of them will be effective. Not only does this strategy not work, but it
will send your company’s page plummeting to the very bottom of the search
results. Most major search engines do not like that trick. Instead, your total
keywords should never exceed 5% of the total word count on any given page. It
is probably better to stick to 3% as a rule. If the word count on a page is
under 100, do not use more than one keyword.
keywords that you select should be relevant to the rest of the content on the
page. Once the keywords are written into the page text, that text should read
smoothly and naturally. It should seem like someone wrote it without a thought
for marketing. Today’s search engines can tell the difference and will penalize
clunky, unnatural language and keywords that are shoehorned into irrelevant
the success of a PPC campaign depends on proper keyword selection, it is
necessary to make the effort to choose exactly the right keywords. The best way
to do this is to hire the services of a reputable PPC marketing professional.
If this is too expensive then there are a number of online keyword research
tools that produce good results, though not as good as an experienced human
being can. Besides doing the research before starting the campaign, it is also
necessary to keep tracking the results of the campaign. Check the Quality Score
and cost per click of each keyword, and always stand ready to get rid of
keywords that aren’t working.
successful PPC campaign also depends on the selection of the right negative
keywords. Negative keywords are exclusion parameters. They will prevent your ad
from being shown on irrelevant pages. For instance, if your company sells
fishing products, you could easily find that your ads are wasted on results for
deep sea fishing trips. Using trip as a negative keyword will prevent this from
should also tweak your company’s website a little bit, if necessary. Your PPC
keywords should appear on your website. They should also be used in the ads
themselves, in the same ways in which they are used on your company’s web page.
in doubt, hire a professional. Even if it is only for a short advisory session,
the expense is likely going to be worth it. A poorly conducted SEO or PPC
marketing campaign wastes time, money, or both.
meta data is easy once you become familiar with the concept and the rules. The
concept is that you’re trying to gain the attention of the search engines. Meta
data is very important for SEO purposes. The rules for writing meta data are
simple. Keep them short, sweet and keyword packed to bring more website
visitors your way. If you want to become a meta data master, here are the rules
The Types of Meta Data to be Concerned
are three primary meta ‘tags’ that you will want to familiarize yourself with
as you begin optimizing your website for search engines like Google and Bing.
There is the title tag, which represents the title of the page or media file
you’re optimizing, there is the description tag, which is the description of
the page or file, and then there is the alt tag.
you use a search engine, then you’ve seen title and description tags in action.
When you conduct a search on Google, for instance, the listings you see are
comprised of those very titles and descriptions. Keep this in mind when writing
your own meta tags. You’ll want to make sure that your tags describe what your
web page is about, and explain it properly so that potential visitors are
enticed to click through.
course not all title and description tags are associated with web pages. Media
files can also be optimized with meta data, and you are encouraged to do so if
you want to expand your marketing reach.
alt tag is a bit different. Also known as alt text, these are the words or
phrases that show up when you hover your cursor over a media file or link. For
those browsers that block images and other media, your alt tags will show
instead of the image, photo or video.
that you know what each tag is, let’s start writing meta data that will succeed
in bringing more website visitors your way.
Writing Title Tags
rule for title tags is to keep them under 60 characters. To help you adhere to
the proper character count, look up a free character counter online and use it
to keep your tags at the correct lengths. A character counter is a copy and
paste device that shows you instantly how many characters are in the sentences
you write. This can help immensely as you write meta data. Incidentally, WordPress
will tell you how long your tags are as you input them into your site, which is
your keywords and use the pipe character (|) to keep your titles neat and
organized. For instance, a company that sells pontoon boats called Love’s
Crafts, might have a title tag for their home page that looks like this:
Pontoon Boats | Love’s Crafts, Inc.
to the character counter, the above title tag is 35 characters long. That means
that you have room to add even more SEO goodness. If the company above also
sells pontoon boat accessories, add it to the title tag to let the search
engines and your customers know that fact. For example, the tag might now read:
Pontoon Boats & Accessories | Love’s
you might want to optimize your site for local SEO, which means you might want
to use a geographic modifier in the tag, like so:
Pontoon Boats | Love’s Crafts, Inc. | St.
long as you adhere to the 60 character rule and you include all the keywords
you wish to optimize for, your pages should rank where you want them to.
The Art of Writing Description Tags
rules for writing description tags are a bit different. Whereas your title tags
should be short, concise and keyword packed, description tag writing is a bit
more lax. You are encouraged to write in complete sentences. Just make sure
that they remain under 140 characters (about the size of a standard tweet).
media files, simply describe the file. You can also use the description tag to
give attribution to the owner of the file. For example, the description of an
image file of a pontoon boat on your site might read:
This pontoon boat was sold last year to
Mr. and Mrs. Faye Huddleson. Image used courtesy of Boat Lover’s Media.
your description tag is for a web page, don’t be afraid to use enticing
language and a call-to-action. After all, your website’s visitors will probably
see your description as part of a search engine results listing. So use the
space available to entice the click, like so:
For pontoon boats and pontoon boat
accessories in St. Paul MN, your first and only choice should be Love’s Crafts.
Visit and shop today!
you can take it a step further and include a phone number with a CTA right in
the description, such as:
For pontoon boats and pontoon boat
accessories in St. Paul MN, call Love’s Crafts at [Insert Phone Number] today!
way your visitors can call from the search results page without ever having to
click-through to your site.
How to Write Alt Tags
Alt Tags will show when someone hovers over your media file or link (or in
place of media files), make your alt tags descriptive while also using
keywords, if applicable. It’s far better to be descriptive for those people
using non-HTML capable browsers. You also get 125 characters, so feel free to
add whatever you think is best for the end user.
example, an image of a pontoon boat winch might simply read, “Pontoon Boat
course, you could take it a step further and add, “Pontoon Boat Winch, St.
Paul MN”, to give your alt tag even more local SEO juice.
that’s all there is to writing meta data for websites. Make them unique for
each page and media file and add them wherever you can to get more attention
from the search engines and new website visitors alike.
a new website can be an exciting task. Designing the pages, creating excellent
content and honing your SEO are hard work, but are also quite rewarding.
However, it can be disappointing when you finally get everything exactly the
way you want it, only to discover that you’re barely getting any traffic. There
are many ways to increase the traffic to your website, but one of the best is
to link to your site from popular platforms, thereby bringing in new readers.
Here are the five top platforms you should be using to increase your website’s
is one of the most innovative platforms out there at the moment. The website
provides a place for bloggers and writers to post articles without the need for
a website of their own. However, you can also use Medium to build an audience
and drive traffic to your own website. You can either create unique content for
Medium or simply copy articles from your website and host them on Medium as
well. In the text of the articles you post on Medium, include links to other
related articles on your website. Keep posting new articles on Medium, and
you’ll begin to see a gradual increase in traffic coming from interested
readers who want to learn more about your chosen topic.
your content is informational or can answer common questions, try posting on
Quora to drive new traffic to your site. Quora is a more serious-minded version
of Yahoo Answers, mostly focusing on professional, business, and semi-academic
questions. Although this somewhat limits what kind of content Quora is useful
for driving traffic to, it also leads to a self-selection process of highly
engaged readers who will gladly click through your links to learn more about
the topic they are curious about. To take advantage of Quora, search for
questions that your content can answer, provide a basic but valuable answer to
the question on the Quora platform, and then add the link to your content as a
source of more in-depth information.
website owners disregard the huge potential that YouTube has to drive traffic
to a site. However, the video hosting site is one of the largest search engines
out there. By producing informative, educational, or entertaining video
content, you can not only build an independent audience on YouTube, but also
redirect that audience to your own site by putting links in videos or in your
video descriptions. YouTube is especially powerful if your goal in driving
traffic to your content is to sell physical products, as review videos are a
great way to demonstrate and explain product features.
like Quora, LinkedIn can give you access to traffic from highly engaged and
serious-minded readers. If you plan to use LinkedIn as a source of traffic,
it’s best to post links to your content in LinkedIn groups that are relevant to
your topic. These groups can give you an excellent source of traffic, provided
the content you are posting is valuable and interesting to the members of that
group. Professional services and business-related content will often perform
best in these groups, but you can also find LinkedIn groups related to many
other subject areas.
you’ve already got a certain amount of traffic coming in and want to take your
website to the next level, give Triberr a try. This little-known website is a
social network specifically for bloggers to share their content, read what
others have written, and share relevant content with their own followers. If
you can develop connections with other bloggers and writers in your niche, you
can arrange to share the content that others write to your following, while the
other bloggers do the same for you. Because it is made up almost exclusively of
people with social media and blog audiences, Triberr can be one of the best
ways to get large numbers of eyes on your website.
these various platforms, you can drive more and more traffic to your website as
you grow your audience. Remember that whatever platforms you use to send
traffic to your site, you will need to post valuable content in order to
convince readers or viewers to go to your website for more. Also, post
consistently in order to drive traffic, rather than adding content one time and
expecting to see a surge of traffic. Just like building organic traffic on your
website, bringing traffic in from other platforms is a process. Keep creating
great content and sharing it with as many people as you can, and you’ll begin
to see your visitor count incrementally building until you achieve and even
surpass your traffic goals.
important task for a business that wants its website to remain search engine
optimized, is to effectively meet the web ranking criteria used by web crawlers. Search
engine web crawlers look for the most current and unique material to offer internet
users. A continually updated website is
more likely to get noticed by the crawlers and be ranked higher in search
order to gain and keep your website optimized, you might want to add a blog to
your website. Blogging is a great way to
keep updated material flowing through your website. You can also choose a standalone blog with
its own URL, if you prefer. A standalone
blog is one more way to create a web presence, and becomes a tool for pointing readers
to your website. Yes, customers can find
you through your blog in the same way they can through your website.
order to build a great blog that both attracts new customers and helps improve your
search engine rank, consider including a few of the following tips:
is a terrific way of introducing yourself to your market in a more personalized
way. How you write and what you share will
show a reader a bit about your personal style and knowledge.
a blog template, font style and layout that reflects the image you want projected. Decide on what voice you’ll write in and try
to remain fairly consistent throughout ongoing blogs in order to brand
State Your Purpose
of your blog can be captured in your title, sub-title or in a stand alone box. A reader should be able to quickly identify your
blog’s purpose and know why they should read it or subscribe to it.
your blog is serving its intended purpose, it will do its job in drawing and
Consider Your Layout
layout includes information boxes on the sides, top or bottom that surround the
posts. Updating these boxes also serves
to improve your SEO. Use layout boxes
for important information such as your contact information, links to your
website, product recommendations, and so forth.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs), with accompanying answers, can also
be featured in your layout.
or purchased analytic tools make blogging exciting. The goal of these tools is to tally the visitors
you’ve had, identify where they’ve come from, and sometimes spell out the exact
words visitors have entered into their search boxes.
will help you to identify whether your blog is reaching its intended audience
or not, and tip you off to new markets to be pursued.
Write Great Posts
posts will be the meat of your blog. It
may help to think of a post as a mini version of a book. Each post should be effective
in drawing a reader into the story being discussed. A blog post should inform, inspire or educate
yourself into writing mode, try putting yourself into the shoes of your target
audience. Ask what they might want to
read about or find a solution for. Give
your readers a reason to investigate who you are further.
your blog in the tone you’ve chosen as your personal brand. It might be witty or sarcastic, professional
or coffee-break conversational. Keeping
your posts fairly consistent in style will brand you better in your reader’s
and build your blog in such a way that it invites dialogue and has the
potential to go viral. Adding an email widget will allow readers to sign up and
receive new blog posts by email. Share buttons can be added to entice readers
to share posts on their Facebook or Twitter accounts.
always a good idea to invite readers into the conversation by asking them to
leave a comment, pose questions or offer input.
Don’t forget to acknowledge their comments for maximum payback.
Investigate Other Blogs
goal of any blogger is to make their blog the go-to place for readers. This requires staying in touch with what
their customers are doing, reading about and
searching for. A good way to find
out, is to participate in other social media sites where you can eavesdrop on
a reader of other blogs is essential too, after all, how will a person know if
their blog is the go-to place if they don’t know what’s going on at other places?
blogging. Keep your blog current with valuable
information, maintain a healthy pace of postings, and then let your analytics
reveal the magic. After blogging for a
few weeks, enter your business or product name into a search bar and see for
yourself just how effective this tool has been in raising your ranking.
Whatever reason you take up blogging, you
want readers to come and visit your site and read what you have to say, whether
it be an opinion, a comment on something like news or an event or you are
providing expertise or information.
For a blog to be successful it must provide
useful information to the reader and is also unique at least in the way it is
put across. If it’s interesting and
engages the reader and provides him or her with what they are looking for, they
will return for more of the same or similar.
The best way to achieve this is by studying the reader and find out what
it is they are looking for and give it to them.
Useful content means different things to different people. Some blogs provide laughs, gossip and fun
conversations. Some blogs provide
education or teach the reader about a given topic. Many successful blogs are sites where debates
are encouraged whilst others provide news or information about issues, topics
or products. A blog can provide one of
these, some of them or all of them.
You can find out what kind of content your
readers want can be found by asking either formally or informally for feedback.
You can also look at similar blogs which is going to be the main way to
research your readers if you haven’t yet started your blog.
Another good tip, if you are starting out
in blogging is to develop a style that defines you and your blog and helps make
it stand out from the blogs that are writing on the same topic/subject.
When actually writing the blog you should
keep an eye on the reader attention span.
Most people are scanning pages rather than in-depth reading as if they
were reading a book. Research has shown
that the average reader stays on a blog for 96 seconds. This means you should keep your blog entries
short. Make them easy digestible short
grabs that the reader can read within 96 seconds. Another thing to think about is Search Engine
Optimization (SE0). Some researches
suggest an article length of around 250 words gets ranked higher than longer
Another tip that many bloggers give is on
the quantity of posts. One blogger
suggests writing as many short posts as you can every day whilst others suggest
writing at least one of a reasonable length 400-500 words. Also it’s a good idea to comprehensively
cover the topic you are writing on without writing a long post. It’s not a hard and fast rule and some
bloggers recommend mixing it up a bit so that your blog site is varied in post
lengths but generally short around 200-250 words.
One aspect that many bloggers forget is use
of titles. If you make good of the title
for your post you will grab the attention of the search engines and you will
also attract the attention of the RSS feeds.
Loyal readers will be more likely stop and read your post if it’s title
stands out and hits them between the eyes.
These are simple tips that can help
establish your blog as one of the successful blogs on the internet. These are just a few tips, there are many
more that can be found by speaking to other bloggers who will be, in many
cases, happy to share their experiences and hints and tips.
Question: Your Company Is in a Boring
Industry and You Have a Boring Product. How Do You Build Links for It?
can’t use the same link building techniques for every kind of business.
Businesses with interesting products like electronics or fashion wear easily
lend themselves to link building efforts. Other products are impossible to talk
about, though. If your company deals in inexpensive dry cells imported from
China, for instance, it can be impossible to write a blog about them, write
guest posts or try any of many other link building techniques commonly used for
interesting products. Hundreds of business areas are considered so
uninteresting that they have no specific industry blogs, at all. If your
business exists in such a category, where do you find the link building
opportunities that you need?
answer is that you need imagination. Many successful businesses in boring
business areas succeed in building great link profiles. Here’s how they do it.
a category map and start brainstorming
link building ideas don’t work for boring businesses. You need to concentrate
on finding unconventional ideas. Trying brainstorming is the best way to
uncover them. Brainstorming doesn’t happen in a vacuum, though. You need to lay
the groundwork to stimulate a brainstorming session properly. One of the best
ways to begin brainstorming for link building is to lay out a category map.
category map is easy to create. You simply need to map every single category
that your business belongs to on a large whiteboard and think of all the
content and link ideas that come to you when looking at each one of the
categories you see.
can start by placing the name of the most specific industry sub-category that
your business belongs to in a circle at the center of your category map. You
then need to begin thinking of every business element related to your specific
industry and putting it in its own circle.
can put down the names of your business vertical, related business verticals,
noncompeting verticals, complementary businesses, the parent category for your
business vertical, the names of the business areas that your suppliers and
customers belong to, popular topics of discussion, the names of related
categories that those popular topics may belong to, industry trends, buyer
personas and so on. Each circle can connect to the main circle that contains
the industry sub-category in some way. Soon, you will have a system of circles
all around the industry sub-category mapped out in the center – a map of the
ecosystem that your business exists in.
an example, if your company makes paving stones to supply to road building
firms, you could consider putting down categories for the construction
business, for road trips, holiday travel, safety issues related to road
building, government regulations, any controversies related to these
regulations, industry authorities and bodies and so on.
you manage to flesh out your category map, try to build a list of every related
you have a system of categories to surround your main business category with,
you need to begin making a list of websites, forums, blogs and other
communities that every one of the categories in your map holds. Once you have a
list of relevant online services, you can find out what experts, authorities
and enthusiasts each field holds.
all this information, you can finally begin building links
you study every community, website, blog, and expert on your list, you’ll find
a few that aren’t very interesting – they may not be particularly
well-respected or may not be active or even particularly relevant to your
industry. For instance, if you need a link building plan for a DWI law firm,
you’re likely to see plenty of websites and communities related to spreading
awareness about the dangers involved in drinking and driving. These communities
tend to be dead set against anyone trying to help DWI offenders get off the
hook. It wouldn’t make any sense to try building links for such a law firm with
such awareness-related websites.
you are trying to market a boring product, regular link building techniques may
not work even if you have a list of related websites and communities. You may
need to genuinely engage the link building targets that you’ve discovered. You
may need to organize seminars, help an industry authority with an educational
or other effort and so on. In general, you may need to give back to the
community to endear yourself to it. On your way, you’ll be able to drop plenty
of links around.
you go about building links in these ways, you will need at first to invest in
the activity without adequate return. It can take time for such a genuine
investment in the community to begin paying off. When does begin paying off,
though, the results could be spectacular.