Tips for Getting Your Small Business Site Noticed By Google

SEO imgThe term “search engine optimization” is enough to confound even the most established small business owner. We know that it is an important part of online marketing and that, if it’s not done right, our websites will be shunned by Google. What we are not sure about is how to use SEO to our advantage and see better rankings for our efforts.

Google uses an algorithm that helps it determine where websites should be ranked. That formula is always evolving, and no one person has the secret key to figuring it out. However, the core of that formula remains the same: quality content and plenty of it.

You don’t have to be one of the multi-billion dollar companies in order to get your website noticed by Google. Even small businesses can find success on the search giant with the right content strategy.

Keep the good content rolling

What are people looking for when they turn to Google? Answers. Not just answers to questions, but solutions for problems they are having. They are looking for products that help fill a need and services that can help them.

The link between your website, where you have those answers/ solutions/ products/ services, and Google is the content you have published on the Internet.

Your content includes your blog posts, articles you have written online, social media posts and even the information included on your web page.

The important thing is to make sure that your content offers value and that you keep it fresh. Don’t let too much time pass between posts or else the search engines will stop seeing your website as active.

If you don’t feel like your writing skills are strong enough to create a stream of content that will draw in readers, consider hiring a ghostwriter to do it for you. You can find writers that have a lot of experience with SEO and who can match your brand voice.

Don’t overdo the keywords

Not so long ago, content marketers were obsessed with the idea of keywords. It got to the point where a lot of content sounded garbled and didn’t read naturally. That’s because so many people wanted to cram a specific set of keywords into their writing, regardless of how bad the writing actually sounded.

Google has long-since wised up to those tactics and has started ignoring online content that has been “keyword stuffed.” Instead, the search engine looks for content that provides value to the reader, not the robots.

Including keywords is still important, but they don’t have to appear in your content at a proper saturation level. What Google looks for is long-tail keywords. That is, having a natural phrase that includes your keyword plus two or three others.

Social sharing gets a thumbs-up

With the prevalence of social media these days, it is important to note that Google sees sharing on social media as a valuable factor in page rank. The more your content is getting shared on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and especially Google+, the more notice Google is going to pay to your website.

Make sure that you are sharing your new blog posts through your social networks. Make them appealing to your followers so that they will also share your content. Before you know it, you could have a piece of content that has gone viral!

There is no magic formula for improving your ranking. If you want to see an improvement in your page rank, you have to satisfy Google. The only way to truly do that is to offer people content that they will find valuable.

How do you stay on top of creating valuable content?

Get up Early and Start the Day off Right!

For many people, sunrise is not a friend. I love watching the sun come up! It’s my favorite time of day. But there are some who instead of bounding out of bed, ready to greet the day, prefer pulling the covers over your head and catching just a few more minutes of sleep.

Then, you reluctantly give in and stumble out of your cozy bed in search of coffee before you feel like a human being again.

You might be happy with this morning routine, but if not you don’t have to accept it as the start to your day. When you wake up fresh in the morning, you are ready to tackle all of your goals, and in some cases, with a smile on your face.

Despite what you might think, you don’t have to remain among those who classify themselves as “not a morning person.” If you want to change, it can be done simply by changing your habits.

The first step is always to admit that the habit you have is not working in your best interest and that you want to change. Understand that the first thing you try won’t necessarily be the right method for you, so don’t become discouraged. Just move on to another way and keep going until you find what works best.

You’ve probably heard this before, especially if you are a parent: Routine is very important! It may not always be possible to stick with the exact same routine from one night to the next, but try to stay as close as possible to your original plan. Eat healthy throughout the day. Avoid foods that are full of sugars and fat close to bedtime. Eat dinner at the same time each day, several hours before bedtime. Do not ingest any stimulants, such as caffeine, before you go to bed.

One thing to try is to eat a healthy dinner each night. When you do, make notes in a journal that describe how you felt when you woke up, how easy it was to get out of bed, your mood after you begin to get ready for the day. After a few days, you will be able to see if this is working for you.

Get some exercise in the early part of your day. When you keep your body in shape, you will sleep better. It is more beneficial to exercise in the morning instead of at night. If you exercise closer to bedtime, your blood will be pumping, which makes it harder to fall asleep. That extra energy boost that you get will be more helpful at the start of your day, so it just makes more sense to get an early workout.

Do something that makes you happy and relaxed before going to bed. Read a chapter or two of your book, do some yoga or meditation. Do not do something that is likely to cause stress, such as balancing your check book or paying bills. Stressing about money is one of the leading causes of sleepless nights.

Also, switch off the television and computer before you start getting ready for bed. The light from their screens can decrease your melatonin levels, making it even more difficult to fall asleep.

Before going to bed, plan to do something that you enjoy first thing in the morning. Maybe do some sun salutations, or even just enjoy your coffee on the patio to soak up some sunshine. Don’t worry about your to-do list until after you are up and ready to take on the day.

Are you a morning glory or a night owl? What do you do to get yourself out of bed in the morning? Let us know!

The BIG SEO Secret for Bloggers

What blogger doesn’t want to see his or her blog listed right there on the coveted first page of Google’s search results? Is there a secret trick, some magic spell that can get you there? Many of us have spent hours in endless searching, scouring other blogs and forums for tips on getting our blog to the top of the search results page.

Here, pro blogger Dr. Adam Stetzer will reveal the key to getting your blog noticed. It’s not a magic spell, it’s just good old-fashioned work!

The BIG SEO Secret for Bloggers

I talk to bloggers just about every day. For a while last year my blogging blog was on page 1 for the Google search “blogging”, though we are now on page 3. With this type of exposure comes some crazy organic traffic. In fact, over 39,000 bloggers have registered with my blog since I opened it in 2007. With each passing year I am continually amazed by just how many bloggers are convinced that there is a BIG SEO secret out there. The conversations seem to follow a familiar pattern. It goes something like this.

Blogger: “Hi Adam, how can I get to page 1 in Google?”

Adam: “It’s a TON of hard work, very incremental, takes a long time and requires some really good content and some awesome backlinks.”

Blogger: “Thanks, I’ve heard all that before, so tell me REALLY how to get to page 1 now.”

They are convinced there is an SEO secret that I won’t tell them. These bloggers feel that if they could just discover the piece of knowledge they don’t have, they will be richly rewarded with huge rankings, traffic and money. They just know it. Since this sentiment is so prevalent, I’ve made it my mission to try to set the record straight with the truth about SEO. And the truth is: The big SEO secret is that there is no SEO secret.

The BIG SEO blogging secret: There is no secret

This is the point in the blog post where I lose most readers. Due to the very phenomena described above, most readers will leave this blog post and continue their frantic search for the secret blogging SEO secret that will instantly solve their problems.

For the 5% of readers who are still with me; Congratulations! You have finally graduated from the masses of mediocrity and are ready to start your journey to success with SEO and blogging. And this was a big step. If you jump over this hurdle, you are mentally ready for the challenge ahead. And most importantly you’ve figured out that you are wasting valuable time searching for an answer that you probably already know.

The second big SEO secret for bloggers: The time you waste searching for SEO tips could have you on page 1 already.

How many forums do you read? How many blog posts do you follow? Make a mental calculation of all the time you spend on “TIP searching” activities and let’s do a little exercise. For the next month, every time you feel the urge to search for blogging or SEO tips you instead actually sit down and work. If you did this, how much extra time will you have? My guess is a fair amount. If you take that time and split it 40% toward creating awesome content and 60% promoting your blog, you will be very pleased with the results.

Again, I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know. And feel free to argue with my percentages. Perhaps you feel it’s 30% / 70% or 50% / 50% – whatever. The point is that you have moved from the unproductive place of self-doubt and answer-searching to the very productive activity of DOING. And DOING is where the success lies.

Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration

Thomas Edison said these great words more than 100 years ago. And I think they apply as much to SEO, blogging and the Internet as they did to his endeavor to invent the light bulb.

While great ideas are required once in a while to jump-start a project (such as a new blog or to find new SEO keywords to go after), the idea-generation needs to be outweighed by a ratio of 99:1 with work. Plain, simple, non-sexy, work. It’s hard. It’s monotonous. It doesn’t sell tabloids. But hard work is still at the heart of why your website or blog is not on page 1 in Google.

And at the risk of becoming a marginalized motivational blogger, I urge you to stop reading, reflect on what you already know about SEO, and think about how you can get more done with the time you already apply to your blog. You already know about keyword selection.

You already know about title tags and keyword density. You already know about Google Adwords search volume estimates. You certainly know about backlinks, guest blog posts and building relationships. And you’ve had the importance of high-quality content pounded into your brain. So there you have it. The leading SEO tips for bloggers were already in your head. So get to it.

About the Author: Dr. Adam Stetzer has a Ph.D. in Industrial Psychology, which includes the study of motivation, job satisfaction and performance at work. He has published in many nationally-recognized, peer-reviewed, journals and maintains his own personal blogging blog. He is also the president of HubShout, an SEO reseller company with industry-leading SEO software. He has been active in the technology field for over 15 years working with large companies such as General Electric, Verizon, Ford, ChevronTexaco, and PepsiCola. Blogging blog link: http://blogskinny.com/ SEO reseller link: http://hubshout.com/

Is Article Marketing Right for Every Business?

Many businesses are starting to look into article marketing as a valuable tool. Every company, from home-based web designers to the international corporations, can benefit from a strategic article campaign. With written content, your business is getting the word out about the products or services you offer.

It’s understandable that many people are reluctant to embark on an article marketing campaign. For them, writing ranks high on their list of least desirable activities, right next to scrubbing the toilet. Even if you are among these people, there’s no reason to leave this powerful tool out of your marketing arsenal.

If you don’t have the time or inclination to write up valuable content every week, look into outsourcing your article writing. There are freelance writers and article marketing services who will write original content for you to submit to various article directories.

There are a plenty of freelance sites and forums where you can get in touch with writers as well as companies that specialize in writing content that focuses on your niche.Article marketing can help any type of business. For example, a beautician looking to bring in new business to her shop could start submitting articles on beauty tips or reviews for styling products and make-up. By showing readers that you are an expert in your field, you’ll be inspiring future customers to seek you out when they need your services.

Before you start churning out content for your article marketing campaign, you need to sit down and write up a list of the various article marketing sites you’d like to submit to. Look for the ones that have the highest page ranks. Next, come up with a list of at least five important facts about the products or services you provide. Under each of those key points, write a few sentences that help support them. Use these five points when writing your articles.

When you get ready to start your own article marketing strategy, always keep in mind that this is not an opportunity to weigh down your articles with affiliate links and cap it all off with stuffy author bio. Readers will know when they’re being fed a bunch of junk and many article directories will reject any articles that don’t fulfill the promise made in your title. Make sure your articles actually have something to say so that you will be seen as an authority on your chosen topic.

Has article marketing been working for your business? Don’t be shy. Show your expertise and leave us a comment. Thank you!

The Three Types of Domain Names Every Article Marketer Should Use

If you’re in the business of article marketing, it’s vital to have a website to help generate new business. For many of you, your domain name reads: www.MyName.com or www.MyCompanyName.com.

Having a website URL with either your name or your company’s name is a great idea, but you need to have more than one domain name for your business, and here’s why:

  1. If people don’t know you, they aren’t going to be searching for your name. This hurts the amount of organic traffic being driven to your site.
  2. Having a URL that only has your name or company name in it doesn’t give people any idea about what your site is for, what type of business you do.
  3. A URL that only has your name or company name doesn’t offer any psychological triggers that will induce someone to click on your site’s link.

With domain names for your business, it’s a good idea to buy several different names that will all link directly to your business page. Specifically, there are three different types of domain names that, as an article marketer, you should use to help drive more traffic to your website.

Keyword-Rich Domain Name

The main reasoning behind having a domain name that is rich with keywords is to improve your SEO with the more popular search engines, like Google. By having a domain name that includes keywords related to your business, you will earn higher rankings on search engines. If you are in a business that doesn’t have a lot of competition, having a keyword-rich domain name can be enough to place you higher up on search engine rankings.

Some examples of a keyword-rich domain name are:

www.articlemarketingexperts.com www.articlesubmissionpros.com

Call-to-Action Domain Name

A call-to-action will motivate readers to take action, to click on a link. You’ll not only be motivating readers, but you’ll be telling them exactly why they need to go to your website right now. They want to know what they’ll be getting or learning if they go to your site.

Some examples of call-to-action domain names are:

www.writewinningarticles.com www.getfreearticletemplates.com

Benefit Domain Name

With this type of domain name, you’re telling the reader exactly what they need and want. You’re providing a psychological trigger in your domain name that will encourage readers to click on your link. You will also be connecting your website with the desires, wants and needs of readers, improving the likelihood that they will click your link.

Some examples of benefit domain names are:

www.findmoreleads.com www.getmorecustomers.com

These are just a few helpful tips to follow when selecting domain names for your article marketing business. These tips will help increase your search engine rankings and reader click-through rates. This will lead to more website traffic for you, which means more potential clients finding exactly what they want on your website.

What sort of domain names do you use in your article marketing business or any business? You’ve got the floor. Please leave a comment and share your expertise.

6 Simply Awesome Tips to Get Your Articles Read

I know from experience as a Ghostwriter, there are quite a few people out there who really dread writing articles, blogs, or any online content for that matter.  Most people who are not professional writers feel that writing an article would involve too much work, or that its wasted time spent on something people won’t read.  Even readers can develop these feelings, especially if the article seems bland, boring or uncreative. The sole purpose of an article is to have it read, but also to share your important information, or something you are passionate about. In the end, if you don’t put forth the effort, it won’t be read and it will be wasted time.

Of course, for an article to be read, it must be written first! The focus should be put on making the article great and it doesn’t have to be hard or straining. You just need to pay attention to a couple of key parts and follow a few guidelines. Once you’ve incorporated these keys, and make a habit out of them, your writing can be fun and your articles can turn into profitable means for business.

Simply stated, your articles must be about something related to your interests or something that you have knowledge about. Whether it’s your business, hobby or something new you are learning if you know about it and/or are interested in it, this will make the writing much easier.

The bottom line is to create interesting content with creativity.

Here are 6 simply awesome tips that will make your articles enjoyable to read.

1.  Create short paragraphs. When you write a paragraph that is lengthy, the words get all cluttered in the reader’s mind. Sometimes it can cause confusion, and worse, they might quit reading it. So, when you write a paragraph, go back through it and chop the excess off. Make it short, sweet and simple, and don’t forget to get to the point, that’s what readers are after anyways. Also, having 10 paragraphs that are a sentence or two long, is also an acceptable format.

2. Use some bullets. And I don’t mean those from a gun! (Being from Texas you have to watch what you say when you are talking about bullets).  Definitely try to compose your main points into bullets or a numbered list. Overall, the reader will be able to grasp and remember all the main points, tips, or keys you’re addressing. When readers see those bullets, they know that is where the tips start and they know they can get answers fast. Remember to indent them, so they are spaced separately from the paragraphs.

3. Sub-Headings = Sub-divided paragraphs.  See here, how I have each tip in bold letters? This really helps to break up the paragraphs, or in this case, tips, so that it flows quite nicely. It also makes it easier for the reader to navigate through the article, from one point to another. This creates a smooth and efficient transition which will keep the reader’s attention.

4. Create an AWESOME title or header. If a reader is interested in your article just by the title alone, you are off to a great start, my friend. Titles are what inspire people to read. Think about all those trash mags you see at the grocery line counter, its trash, but you’re still interested aren’t you? Your titles should remain short, but enticing! They should describe your article, but again, in a simple yet creative way.

Examples: Reach out to your reader’s emotions or provide something interesting, such as, “Tips to make her want you now,” “How to give her goose-pimples,” or more commanding titles like, “Get her to say “I’m yours” in 6 easy steps.”

5. Keep the “Interesting” rolling. From start to finish, your article should contain things that are very interesting.  You want the reader step back and say, “Oh, now that’s interesting.” Of course, you don’t want to overdo it and throw facts left and right, but you know, let the “interesting” flow. Real life situations are always great to engage readers because people can relate. Descriptions, details, metaphors can guide the reader’s imagination through your article. Remember, making their reading experience exciting, fun and pleasurable will bring them back for more.

6. Use facts and figures. Throwing in a few statistical facts, some numbers, or a graph or two can really drive your article. This is because it presents an authoritative presence.  By no means do you want to make it too formal, but something light and easy will be engaging and it can help to back up whatever you are writing about.

Taking the time to really use these few steps will do wonders for your articles. Just give all of them or some of them a try and see which ones may work best for your article marketing efforts.

What are some of your tips that you have found work for you?