Sunday, June 6, 2010

Learning How to Market a Small Business on the Internet


When you're trying to get a small business off the ground, there is only so much money to go around when it comes to marketing your business. One thing that will help you get better results is to take the time to make sure that your business makes the most out of the dollars that it does have available to spend on marketing. Internet promotion is one arena where a small business can get ahead without spending a great deal of money, and economical search engine marketing techniques can be one of the best ways to help your business gain some ground, and some customer online.

The best way to increase your website's performance is to start on search engine optimization. This method has a number of positives in its favor. First of all, SEO is generally quite affordable. It is something that you can do primarily through an investment of time rather than money. Second, the search engines natural traffic is still the number one way that people find sites on the internet. While methods like social networking are certainly gaining traction, and is a part of an overall web marketing strategy, when you get right down to it, the lion's share of your traffic is still most likely to come through the search engines.

When you're starting to try and get your business to do better in the search engine results, one of the first things that you need to focus on is selecting the best keywords to promote for your business. By selecting keywords that are striking the balance between a lack of competitiveness and enough search popularity, you can quickly propel your business to greater successes on the internet.

SEO does not need to be expensive. For instance, just by optimizing your pages for a better keyword density it can begin to get your pages to rank higher in the search engines. Secondly, you can engage in offsite optimization, which means creating content on other pages that links back to your site, ideally while utilizing anchor text that focuses on your keywords. Google also places great importance on the links that you have pointing to your pages, so creating content that links back to you can help to increase traffic through an SEO point of view, as well as bringing you some direct traffic through the articles, videos, or audio content that you're posting on sharing sites.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

On-Page Optimization Techniques To Take Your Rankings To The Next Level!

By Michael Fleischner

After you've selected the keywords you want to optimize your website for, you need to focus on what is called on-page optimization. On page optimization is what you do on your website pages to improve organic rankings. The good news is that through years of research and experimentation I have identified the most important on page factors for improving organic rankings.

There are variety of optimization factors to consider when optimizing your web pages. I have found three factors in particular to have more of an impact than others when correlating them to search engine rankings. In particular, meta tags, URL structure, and page load speed all have a direct impact on search engine rankings for particular keywords or keyword phrases.

Meta tags are important to web site rankings because they provide some basic information to search engine spiders. Meta tags need to be formatted correctly to enhance search engine rankings. My research as shows that meta tags by themselves cannot radically improve rankings. It is my belief that meta tags may be used to verify other aspects of your website and are important for getting users to click through from search engine results.

The best formatted meta tags should include a title tag that includes the keywords that you are trying to optimize for. It is recommended that the size of the title tag is sixty or fewer characters as this is the limit shown on Google search results. The second meta tag is the description tag which should be limited to fewer than one hundred and fifty characters and repeat your keyword phrase no more than two times.

The last meta tag worthy of description is the keyword tag. I see this tag misused all too often and it may actually be hurting your search engine rankings. When using a keyword tag, focus on only a dozen of your most important and highly trafficked keywords. Search engines should know that you are an authority site and worthy of top rankings. Do your research and only include the keywords that truly matter. You can also evaluate the sites in the top positions and model their keywords as long as they are included on your web site or blog.

Once you have your meta tags within your web page code it's time to focus on the next on page optimization factor. The load time of your web pages matter a great deal to Google and other search engines. Not only does your web page need to be formatted correctly but it needs to load quickly. Fast loading web sites mean a better user experience. Search engines like Google reward you for providing the right information quickly to web site browsers. Keep load times to a minimum and continually work to improve the speed at which your site loads.

The third and certainly one of the most important factors is URL structure. It is true that having your keyword in the URL helps but it is not the only or the most heavily weighed optimization factor by Google. There are plenty of examples of sites that include the keyword in the URL being outranked by other web sites. If you can purchase a URL that has your keyword in it though, consider it advantageous. If you are unable to do so, consider adding a folder or page to your site that includes the keyword you want to optimize your site for. A good example would be www.sample.com/keyword. By doing so you are placing your keyword close to the root and giving it more value. Also consider a sub domain strategy.

Before you begin any search engine optimization effort, evaluate your web site, landing page, or blog from the perspective of meta tags, load speed, and URLs. There are additional on page factors we'll discuss in the next lesson, but the three mentioned herein are vitally important to your search engine optimization success.

Michael Fleischner is an SEO consultant and author of SEO Made Simple, revealing strategies guaranteed to improve search engine rankings. Learn more about Michael's hands-on SEO training program, Internet Marketing Forum, and SEO consulting at MarketingScoop.com or contact him via the Marketing Blog at http://marketing-expert.blogspot.com.


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Where Has All The Good Marketing Gone?

What You Can Learn From Top Marketers

By Michael Fleischner

I don’t know about you, but I feel like there is a scarcity of good marketing today. What do I mean “good marketing?” You know the kind of marketing that sticks with you and drives you to take action. The only marketing that has really moved me in the last couple of years has been from Apple. How do I know? I own 3 ipods.

You might be thinking to yourself that it’s more the product that drives behavior than the marketing, and when it comes to the ipod I don’t necessarily disagree. However, I would argue that in some ways, the marketing has to be even better than it does with your run of the mill product.

Apple has maintained a certain level of success with their marketing and now that marketing must not only tie together with previous marketing campaigns, but convince current customers that their current products are no longer sufficient.

It appears that this is done, not through slight of hand, but by showing you what you can’t do with your current device. By illustrating this in a manner that is contradictory to your current satisfaction, it does make you feel like your ipod – which was fine until a moment ago has suddenly become inadequate. To me, that’s really good marketing.

So what can be learned from the tens of millions that Apple spends on advertising every year? I think the answer to that question is to work in lock step with your product development team to showcase developments and tap the emotions of those using your products. When I use my iTouch, I feel empowered, cool, and complete. I wouldn’t have reached that conclusion without the help of marketing to get me there.

The lesson that I’ve learned is that marketing, if done correctly, helps us to define how we feel about a product. Once you have prospects and customers attaching emotions to your products, you develop loyal customers. The next time that you’re thinking about a marketing campaign, consider how you want your customers to feel about your product.

Manage the entire purchase decision process in order to consistently manage the experience to reinforce or produce these desired feelings. Once you’ve been able to do that successfully, your creative, marketing messages and promotions should be relatively easy to produce. Now that’s what I call good marketing.

About the Author

Michael Fleischner is an author and Founder of MarketingScoop.com. If you're looking for SEO training or wish to Learn SEO with the help of leading search engine optimization experts, then check out the leading SEO software with MarketingScoop's SEO Elite Software Review and turbo charge your search engine optimization.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION STRATEGY



A well planned and well thought out search engine optimization strategy is key to running a successful search engine optimization campaign. When you are deciding what methods you want to use, you need to be sure the methods you use are tried, true, and tested. Search engine optimization strategy changes often. The biggest key to this change is based on the new rules search engines such as Google decide to change their search parameters and algorithms to. Many internet marketers often speculate about what things search engines are doing to change their policies, but in truth no one except for the search engines themselves actually know this information. This information is a trade secret and the secret is kept very tightly sealed.

There's one thing that has stayed consistently consistent (if that even makes sense). It is article marketing. Article marketing is the process of writing and submitting articles to article directories. The benefit for you and your website is high quality anchor texted backlinks. I'll talk more about this later. The benefit for the article directories is content. Article directories want good high quality content to fill their directories with. The more content they have, the more ad space they can sell. The benefit for search engines is also content. Search engines love textual content and therefore there's no better textual content like articles. The purpose of a search engine is to deliver the highest quality and most relevant content to the end user. If you are creating good high quality and relevant content in the form of articles, the search engines will index your content, rank it high in the search engines and give you backlink credit for it.

So now we are back to backlinks. If you are not familiar with backlinks, here's a brief lesson. There are two types of backlinks. You can have reciprocal links which are two-way links that link two websites together. For example, if you and another website both link back to each other, this is a reciprocal link. Search engines will give you credit for this as a backlink, but they don't particularly care for reciprocal links. Search engines much prefer one-way backlinks.

The additional benefit of article marketing is that when submitting your article to directories, the article directories allow you to place up to 3 anchor texted backlinks. If you are a smart marketer or at least have a semi-functioning brain stem, you would link back to your website with anchor texted keyword phrases for keywords you'd like to get ranked for in search engines.

This is what I do for my clients and my websites and it has proven to be very successful.