Tag Archives: SEM

Your website: WHO are you?

I work with copywriting clients every day. Sometimes it’s a tiring experience.

“Just go to our website, all the information you need is there”, I’m assured.

So I click over to their site, and I have no idea what it’s all about. I click around the site, and it’s still all a mystery. Who are these people? What are they selling? To whom are they selling it?

This happens because the client knows who he is and what he does, and so do his customers. Unfortunately anyone new to the business and site has no idea.

The home page is titled “Home”, the About page directs visitors (there won’t ever be any) to the sales page, which is just a trademarked product name, with a link to buy.

A website is a huge opportunity to market your business, and to attract customers you could reach in no other way. Your site can be a 24 x 7 x 365 sales machine, IF you realize that no matter how many millions you’re making in sales each year, you’re nobody online until you tell people who you are, and what you do.

You know the saying “content is king” — it is. Content on your site is free advertising. It sells.

Start by adding content to your site which tells your visitors what you do, and for whom you do it. Describe your products and services, and the benefits they provide. Tell site visitors how long you’ve been in business, and who past customers are.

It’s your site. It can make more money for you than you believe, IF you tell people who you are. Remember, you’re not your site’s target audience. Look at your site form the point of view of your visitors.

[tags]SEM, marketing, web site, site content, copywriting[/tags]

Web content: develop the best content for your site

The Web changes fast. If you created a Web site a year or two ago, you may be surprised at how much competition you have now. That competition will only increase in the future. However, if you’ve already got a site that’s “aged” you can stay ahead of your competition.

The best way to stay ahead is with content.

Unfortunately, when it comes to content, many small business sites (and even larger sites) just slap up a few articles and leave it at that. Yes, the articles will help, but you can increase traffic and sales if you think about WHY people are searching using the keywords you’re targeting.

Here’s an excellent article which will get you thinking. Writing Content for Small Businesses Online suggests that there are three major intentions behind searches.

For you, the best intention is a search looking for:

“Transactional Queries – Transactional queries are ones in which a searcher may not have a specific site in mind, but they want to perform or complete some kind of task online, such as accessing and searching a database about a topic, being entertained interactively, downloading a video, making a purchase, or interacting with the site or others in some way. If you offer goods or services to consumers or to other businesses, you’ll want to be found by the people who are looking for what you have to offer and want to interact with you.”

Add content to your site targeting people whose intentions are transactional, first. These people comprise your “money” traffic. Think about what they need from you to make purchase or other decisions… and then give it to them.

[tags]web content, SEO, SEM[/tags]

Local search: make the most of your organic listings

Are you making the most of your organic search engine listings? Changes are you’re not, and I include myself in that group of laggards.

As the search space becomes ever more competitive, you need to make the most of your local listings.

I’ve found a great resource below; it’ll help me get my own angelabooth.com site up to scratch, and whatever your business, there are plenty of tips here which will help you, too.

For example, when discussing the importance of “PRODUCT/ SERVICE KEYWORDS IN LOCAL BUSINESS LISTING DESCRIPTION”

Local Search Ranking Factors | Google & Yahoo Local SEO Best Practices reports:

“Ed Reese – This area is one of the most important aspects of local search. A well crafted, descriptive, keyword rich description is imperative for a local listing to succeed. It’s important to perform thorough keyword research to determine the highest relevant volume of local search terms in your geographic area to determine the keyword combinations for products, services, and location. As keyword tools typically have poor data for local low volume searches, use Google Adwords to discover real search volumes for your geographic area to gain the insight to which keywords to use in your description.”

I’m a huge fan of the title and description tags to help you to get lots of targeted traffic. In my Web Copywriting Profits: DIY Copywriting ebook I called the cunning use of title/ description tags in creating your own little free advertisements on Google, and so they are.

If you’re one of the millions whose home page currently languishes under the snappy title “Home” go and do something about that RIGHT NOW. You’re missing out on lots of free traffic.

[tags]SEM, SEO, local search[/tags]

Paid search — advertisers flood online Worldwide

Bloomberg says that Google’s third quarter profit climbed 25 per cent as businesses used paid search to improve sales.

Bloomberg.com:
Worldwide
reports:

“Advertisers are shifting budgets away from TV and print media toward ads that run alongside search listings, targeting online shoppers. The Internet will account for 8.7 percent of the $284 billion in U.S. ad spending this year, up from 7.2 percent in 2007, according to Barclays Capital.”

Are you using paid search? Remember that you can increase sales with organic search too, when you focus on adding content to your site.

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[tags]search marketing,SEM,marketing[/tags]

Give people what they want

The Google Blog offers a great post on Google’s technology.

Official Google Blog: Technologies behind Google rankingreports:

“Search in the last decade has moved from give me what I said to give me what I want. User expectations from search have rightly increased. We work hard to fulfill the expectations of each and every user, and to do that we need to better understand the pages, the queries, and our users. Over the last decade we have pushed the technologies for understanding these three components (of the search process) to completely new dimensions.”

“Give people what they want” needs to be your mantra too. Whatever your business, you’ll succeed when you put the focus on helping people.

Google has always understood this.

Back when Google was the new kid on the search engine block, I used various other search engines, Excite and Alta Vista, from memory. There was another search engine I quite liked (but since I can’t remember its name now, and it’s long gone, it didn’t make a huge impression *).

Google won me over because it was clean, simple, and fast – and 80 per cent of the time I got what I wanted. Nowadays, Google gives me what I’m looking for almost 100 per cent of the time.

Google’s always understood the concept of helping their customers.

* Well, I remembered the name of that long gone search engine – Northern Light.

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[tags]Google, SEO, SEM[/tags]

Essential keywords: do your own digging

MarketingSherpa: Special Report: Online Keyword Research Guide: 5 Tips & 9 Useful Tools notes that:

“A solid keyword list is the foundation of a successful search-marketing strategy. Marketers must continually work to find relevant search terms and understand the volume of traffic they provide — as well as the number of competitors using the same phrases — to shape their SEO and pay-per-click strategies.”

The article gives you a list of popular keyword tools. However, it’s also essential that you do your own digging through your referrer logs to find those keywords which convert for you.

Better a little traffic with great conversions than a flood of traffic with no conversions.

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Top ten rankings in Google – the awful truth

In the past year, search engine optimization (SEO) has become huge online, because as more businesses use Internet marketing, all want a top ten ranking, preferably in Google.

Aaron Wall’s written a great report on the topic, “What is a #1 Google Ranking Worth?”.

A top ranking in Google for the keyword of your choice is the holy grail of search marketing.

Achieving such a ranking for your favorite keyword is very difficult. However, all is not lost. You CAN achieve a ranking for less competitive keywords, and this requires both commitment, and creativity.

Aaron’s report will give a kickstart. The awful truth about achieving a top ten ranking for a competitive keyword is that it’s not easy. If anyone tells you that it is, recognize them for the fraud they are.

[tags]marketing, SEO, SEM, Google[/tags]

Organic search and SEO versus paid search

I love Search Engine Optimization (SEO) because it’s a real challenge. However, although many people believe SEO is “free”, it’s not.

SEO takes time, experience and energy which you can eliminate when you opt for PPC or other advertising.

As SEO is Not Free Traffic says:

“… (SEO is)… Hard to quantify, hard to prove in advance. This is SEO’s ‘Achilles heel’, and why paid search usually wins over natural search in the budget battles, receiving the lion’s share of the search marketing budget. This is a travesty, considering the searcher’s primary focus on the natural results and the fact that a searcher interprets a natural listing as an implied endorsement by the search engine.”

Both SEO and paid search advertising have their place. Which you choose depends on a number of factors, all impacting on the bottom line.

It takes time to optimize Web pages so that they rank. Not only do you need to get on-page factors right, you need to get links too. For a product launch, or a product push, when you need traffic right away, SEO is a waste of time – pay, and get traffic.

However, some of your budget and time should go to SEO, simply because when you stop paying for advertising, the traffic stops. In that sense, SEO is the gift that keeps on giving.

Your money and time, your choice.

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[tags]SEO, advertising, SEM[/tags]