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What’s Blog Got To Do With It? How Blogging Helps SEO

Did you know that over 50% of the people who get online and use social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and Twitter, also read  blogs on a daily basis?  That’s a lot of people!  So, if you’re not utilizing a blog to promote your site’s services; you’re missing out on a lot.  Blogging not only keeps content fresh ( a Google brownie point ), it also keeps regular readers coming back for more.

Wondering How Blogs Help SEO Purposes?

heart-and-arrow-150x150There are several ways they help.  For one, they provide yet another place to put your keywords and links to tell the search engines what you’re all about.  If you’re blogging without taking advantage of the spaces where you can provide keyword rich data like the metatags, title, categories and headers; then you’re missing opportunities.  Blogging is a great way to reiterate over and over what your site is about and use your keyword phrase targets repeatedly in a ‘white hat‘ way.

Another way blogs help SEO efforts is they provide another piece for the link building puzzle.  There are several directories that are specifically designated to submitting blogs and RSS feeds.  This helps keep your content and links updated in a much bigger way.  The links in RSS Feeds are deep links that boost your relevance to the search engines and automatically update with your new content.

You can also capture the traffic for long tail keyword terms with blogging subjects more easily.  If you are trying to be #1 a term like credit repair, there are inevitably going to be some longer, less frequently searched, but still valuable variations of your keyword phrase.  Here’s your chance to include those in your optimization efforts.

Do You Struggle with New Subject Matter for Your Blog?

You might find yourself stalling on the creativity front when coming up with fodder for your blog.  Here’s the good news, the most important thing about a blog is consistency, not necessarily quantity.  So, even if you blog only once or twice a week; you’re still doing your site a favor.  The best thing about a blog is that you can write about, rant on, teach or just highlight pretty much whatever you want.  As you write more, the ability to tie in your subject matter with your product, service or target will get easier.  You can always call the pros at Absolute Placement Today to help out as well!

 

Still Need More Motivation to Blog?  Here it is:

BECAUSE PEOPLE READ STUFF

 

Speaking of blogs, now that you’re already here, please take a moment to explore our SEO Services blog.  If you see something you like, share it.  If you don’t, please email me with questions or requests at jen@absoluteplacementtoday.com.  I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

 

Link Building is a Slow and Steady Science

rainbow-gold-150x150I will admit it, I’ve become a little obsessed….  I have been looking at options on a daily basis and almost by the hour for different ways to assist in many different levels of Link building.   I feel like a MAD SCIENTIST digging and studying the best options in development and results.. At the end of the day does it really matter what we have LOOKED FOR or what we have actually developed?  Google does not see that we have emailed our buddies asking for link exchanges, only that the link is there and proper or NOT… Results and relevance!

However, this is EXACTLY what it takes to build QUALITY.  Quality links, quality content, substantial ranking improvements… TIME and patience…

Google is changing the game all of the time, so link building that worked last year or maybe even last month is just not ok…..

Here are some tips I have gathered in order to build an effective link building campaign:

Directory Links:

SEOMOZ offers a HUGE list of both tracking tools and direct links to the resources for the submission of your business to the directory..

Press Releases:

Be real careful not to fall into the same trap most do and begin spinning your stuff out of control. Keep it unique and submit your press to reputable resources. PR Web, for example, has many different pricing options and they help with moderation for those that want to get their word out but lack the skill set of a professional writer.

If you’re feeling frisky, there are AUTO LINK CAMPAIGNS out there.  But you run the risk upon using that they will beat you up and load you down with garbage links that will cost you more to get rid of than it did to get them! The old saying “ if it sounds too good to be true; IT IS” rings true.

So again, patience and consistency is the name of the game.  If you’re digging for the ever elusive golden link pile that will rocket your site to the stars, you’re better off following the rainbow to the pot of gold with the little Green Guy…

Do you have a Pot Of Gold? Natural Link Building Tips?

Labor Day in the Internet Marketing World

For many, Labor Day marks the end or the start of many things….  To most children’s disappointment, it ends the pool season and marks the real start of school.  For some it indicates the start of football season, cooler weather, the end of weekend barbeques and wearing white ( for people who pay attention to that sort of thing ).  In the world of internet marketing, it marks the start of a different ‘season’ of traffic.  A lot of people use a completely different strategy in the their SEO efforts and Adwords accounts that they wait to launch over the long Labor Day weekend.  Being aware of the seasonal spikes in traffic that are associated with the product your website provides is a good thing to keep up with.

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With the start of school and upcoming season for holiday travel, ski trips, cooler weather gear and the like; you might want to start thinking about a few new ways to capitalize on that market.  Here are a few tips for keeping your traffic up and optimal:

  1. If possible, start tuning your content efforts and blogging topics to the interests of the people who are active online during the season….  ‘I’m thankful for ________’, ‘Prices So Low It’s Spooky’, ‘Deck the Halls with _____’…..  See the pattern?  All of those titles evoke the thought of a certain time of year and the types of products that go with it.
  2. Add new content that keeps up with current events and trends.  If there’s a new term peaking that is at all related to the product you offer, it’s time to start campaigning for attention around it.  You can do this by opening up a certain page of your site to commission based affiliate offers.  Let’s say you have a website that offers sports memorabilia> think tailgating season>think beer.  Perhaps partner up with a company that offers team themed koozies, beer coolers or a kegerator.  Marketing for a kegerator helps you associate with a term that is searched 14,800 times!
  3. Launch new types of online marketing efforts.  If your traffic generally starts to dip during the cooler weather seasons, consider ramping up newsletter, email marketing, press release and blogging efforts.  The key is to keep your website and what it offers fresh in the minds of past, current and potential customers.
  4. Lastly,but certainly not least; we highly recommend partnering up with ( if you haven’t already ) the expert SEO Services team at APT!  We can help explore different ways to maximize your target audience and your ROI.

We hope you enjoy this last hurrah of all things summer! Happy Labor Day from the Absolute Placement Today team!

SEO Explained

This past weekend I had the great fortune of getting to go to Denver, CO for some business.  I also got to get out and play.  It was in my play time that I was made aware of the lack of understanding the general public has for what SEO actually is….  still.  I used to get the glassy eyed, I don’t know what you’re talking about looks back when I first started in this business.  But I guess I just thought that everyone had sort of ‘caught up’.  Turns out I was wrong. So, I thought I would take a time out to explain it on our fabulous SEO Services blog!  What better place than that, huh?

female_teacher_or_professor_at_chalkboard_with_pointer__welcome_back_to_school_0521-1005-1515-4012_SMU-150x150SEO Explained in Non Techy Speak:

  • SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization.  There are many different search engines, but the main three are Google, Bing and Yahoo.  Optimize, by definition, is to make as perfect or efficient as possible.  So, we optimize sites for the search engines….  This means we try to get a site to the top of the first page of organic or non paid search results. This takes a lot of behind the scenes work on our part or the site owner’s.
  • A website is launched on the internet and of course is looking for lots of traffic, purchases of product x, requests for more information or overall ‘conversions’. A conversion can be something as simple as filling out a newsletter form to a bigger gesture like booking your next family vacation.
  •  There are many steps a site must take to be successful online.  First of all, it needs to be found.  So, the owner or operator usually seeks out someone specializing in SEO Services ( if they’re smart ) to help them get going.  From there, the SEO provider goes in and figures out how to best optimize the site for success.  This means the product and site are evaluated, keywords that are associated with the product offered are targeted and the site gets an overhaul to make it marketable to both search engines and consumers with those goals in mind.
  • Still don’t get it?  Here’s the explanation I give when people ask me what I do.  If you do a Google search for Braces, it’s my job to make my client’s site come up first.

I hope that helps some of you better understand just what the heck an “SEO” does!  What job do you have that you constantly explain?

Patience is a (SEO) Virtue

SEO is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

I can’t tell you the number of people I’ve encountered in my experience as a SEO professional who still think that long lasting, traffic increasing,  revenue generating organic rankings can be achieved overnight.  Perhaps it’s because there are some in the world of SEO Services who still, despite all the evidence to the contrary, promise this very thing just to get the account.  These ‘salesmen’ capitalize on the client’s request of results right this very minute!  Which, to be long lasting and effective is almost always impossible with true ‘white hat’ practices.

Turtle-Slow-Small-150x150Your Rush for Results Could Land You in Hot Water

And here’s a huge red flag- If your site goes from non existent to topping out in all the search engine rankings within 30 days, beware.  I’m working on an account right now that had this very thing happen.  They were in the top 3 for all of the terms they were targeting, it was great; life was awesome and then BAM!  They dropped back to page 5.  ( Which, in my opinion, was a mercy placing that isn’t often offered by the Google gods. )  They could have easily been pushed back to page 200 for what we found.  They quit with the ‘SEO’ they were working with at the time and came to us seeking help.  Here’s what we found:  hundreds and hundreds of links that were obviously built by a machine.  Links to pornographic sites, completely irrelevant, horribly placed and mismanaged links.  While they did have the anchor text that the site is targeting, they hurt them in the long run.  The truth is, if you do something shady to gain rankings; Google WILL figure it out.  Even if they ‘reward’ you for it at first.  Then, you have some making up to do.  BIG TIME. Google becomes your jealous and distrusting girlfriend and the links you build become highly suspect.  You have to work hard to earn the trust back and to regain a good working relationship with the search engines.

That’s not saying you won’t gain results from link building.  It is arguably the most important element of good SEO.   Just not the ‘dumpster’ type of link building that a lot of companies engage in.  If it’s not relevant to your product or site or page from which you’re trying to link; it will more than likely hurt you.

They’re Experts for a Reason

Still think you can get really quick results that last from your SEO Services company?  Here are some thoughts on the virtues of patience from some of the experts:

Tom Bates, owner and founder of Absolute Placement Today says, “Quick and easy doesn’t always get it done.  If it did, you’d find do it yourself SEO Services kits in the aisles of your local Walmart.”

Internet Marketing Consultant, Dave Conklin gave his two cents as well: “While SEO requires patience to get going, the snowball effect that takes place over time is so well worth the time and investment.  As your site continues to grow, you’ll generate more and more revenue and/or leads from more and more keywords.”

The gist is this: If you’re looking for really quick results in Organic web placement to be the foundation of your website success, you’re already failing.  Slow and steady wins the race.  Just ask the tortoise.

 

 

 

Why the Right Keywords are Essential to Your SEO

By now, you’ve probably heard people talk about your keyword targets in regards to your SEO efforts.  And you may think you know what your targets should be.  This is not a time for a good guess, this is an excellent time to consult an SEO Services company to help.  It would be a huge waste of time and money if you spend it optimizing your website for terms that are not being searched for.  Getting top placement for a broad keyword phrase is great!  But only if you’re going to get traffic from it.  If users are not searching the term, then it is useless to you.  Worse, if it’s a term unrelated to your website content or product; Google will track the number of times that your site was passed over in it’s results and you’ll start sliding down for the term if it’s not bringing you traffic or if searchers are immediately returning to their results.

identify-the-target-market-150x150It really pays to have expert SEO consultation when you’re trying to find your target keywords.  The right keyword phrases are the foundation for how you build text links, how you optimize your site and create your content.  Having the right targets turns searches into leads or sales.  If you choose to do your keyword research yourself, there are some tools available.  Some are even a product of the search engines themselves.  Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Start off with more broad terms – this will give you the guide on how to get down to the more detailed terms.
  • Create categories as you go and keep drilling down to make silos of relevant keywords.
  • Check out the suggestions that the keyword tool you are using prompts.  You may be surprised to find terms that you had not or would not have thought of otherwise.
  • Use long tail keywords to get higher ranking for more competitive terms.  Using the long tail version, not only targets that phrase; it also usually incorporates the desired keyword phrase.  For instance, if your keyword target is ‘credit repair‘; ‘do it yourself credit repair programs online’ is a long tail associated keyword phrase that includes your #1 target.  If you gain placement for the long tail version, it will give you a boost in your campaigns geared toward ‘credit repair’.

 

I hope these tips help you in your quest to find the right keywords.  If you have more questions or would like to inquire more about our SEO Services, please contact the Absolute Placement Today team!

Behavioral-targeting and using Long Tail Keywords are an excellent way to get higher ranking quickly for keywords that generate sales, and will have longevity to them in the search results. Poor keyword examples would be: kindle, nike shoes, roommate new york. Here are some examples of keywords that are ideal for SEO:

Is Any Publicity Good Publicity? – Online Reputation Tip of the Day: Stop Talking!

angrykanyeA lot of people operate by the theory that all publicity is good publicity.  However, there are tons of recent examples that rip this thought to shreds.  I’m betting the publicists ( if they chose to keep their jobs ) for people like Mel Gibson, Kanye West  and Representative Anthony Weiner ( that might always make me giggle a little ) are charging triple overtime to repair the damage done by the press that their clients have received as of late.

I’d imagine their first tip is STOP TALKING!  This can also go for online reputation management.  If you find your business on the receiving end of some bad press that ends up online, you need to team up with a professional Seo Services team to help.  One single event or bad review, bad product or ill advised rebuttal can have lasting negative implications on your reputation for years to come.

Toyota has been making some of the most popular cars on the market for almost 75 years.  In 2010, their recall of 8 million cars has severely damaged the reputation they’d built up for the better part of 7 DECADES.  In the earlier stages of the recall and in an attempt at some reputation damage control, they launched a series of commercials addressing the issues, apologizing and assuring the public of their dedication to safety standards and commitment to quality vehicles.  Then, they didn’t talk about it anymore.  Which is smart, in my opinion, and a good move on the part of their PR department.  The hope is that their long standing, relatively good reputation will resurface. Now their marketing efforts lie in promoting the safety and quality of their new vehicles and only addressing the recall issues when they  are forced to.

Will it work?  It did, in a sense, for the likes of Britney Spears and McDonald’s ( see: Supersize Me )….  Don’t leave your comeback in the hands of fate.  If your business’ name has suffered due to ineffective marketing efforts or failed reputation management from your current SEO services provider, contact us.  Absolute Placement Today works with their clients to create, manage and promote their online business.

8 Signs Your SEO Services Company is a Rip Off

stock-photo-identity-theft-in-progress-thief-running-away-with-a-sackful-of-credit-cards-and-personal-28627222Search engines are the most common and powerful driver of traffic and potential customers to a website.  By now, most business owners know the importance of teaming up with an SEO services provider to gain the type of rankings and results they need for success online. There are a ton of choices out there when it comes to companies or individuals who promise their expertise in search engine optimization (SEO) strategies that will maximize your return and gain your site better rankings in  the search engines.  Take your time finding the right fit for your company and needs.  Good SEO takes time, effort, dedication and communication on both the part of the website owner and the firm they hire.  A lot of companies find themselves the victim of huge promises with little result.  Optimization of your site is too important a factor in your success to be left to an amateur.

Here are 8 Signs that your Current SEO Services Need a Revamp:

Promises of Immediate Top Ranking for Competitive Keyword Terms –

There really just is no way to make such a guarantee unless there are some black hat SEO practices taking place.  In that case, you should RUN, not walk your way right out their office.  And take your money with you.

Sending Unqualified and Unrelated Traffic to your Site and Claiming Success-

If you sell food storage containers, there is no reason you should rank for under the bed rolling clothing storage boxes.

Putting up Content that is Overridden with Random Keywords-

What doesn’t read well to you, won’t read well to your potential customers either.

Claiming that Optimization is Complete by Redoing the Metadata –

There are a lot more steps to optimizing a site than simply plugging keyword phrases into your metatags.  There needs to be some on page tweeking as well as off site SEO efforts and numerous other steps.

Doing a One Time Overhaul with No Ongoing Maintenance Efforts –

This. Will. Not. Work.

Claiming that the Links Built are ‘Proprietary’ Information –

You should have the right to see where your site is linked, what each link looks like and how it’s relevant to your site.

No Reporting-

If you’re not getting a monthly update, bimonthly or even quarterly report showing what’s been accomplished and what’s up next; you’re getting duped.

Less Frequent or Non Existent Communication –

The SEO services provider that you choose works for and with you.  If you don’t have the direct number to your account manager or they don’t return your calls or emails within a 24 hour period; it’s time to move on.  You, your money and your company deserve more than that.

Those are just some of the signs that should raise some red flags for you.  Don’t waste your money with a company that isn’t doing the job you’re paying them to do.

5 Tips to Become a Better Googler

frustrated-searchesIt’s true, anyone can do a Google search to find what they want.  You simply type in the phrase: dental braces and Bam!  You get back pages and pages of results that have the word dental and braces in them. However, did you know there are certain things you can do to make your Google search more applicable to exactly what you’re searching?  You can easily limit your frustrations and streamline the results you get to more quickly locate your target with just a few adjustments to your query.

Here are a few tips that the average searcher doesn’t know that can help improve the search experience:

Search with “Quotations “

If you simply type in the phrase Seo Services, Google will return any results that have the words seo and services in them in no particular order or relevance.  So you could end up with random blog posts, press releases, quotes  and stories that don’t actually find you seo services.  If you add quotations: “Seo Services”, your search gets smaller because Google will only return results that have the words of the searched phrase together.

Use the +1 Feature

If you’ve done your search and found exactly what you’re looking for, you can use the +1 feature to make it come up again the next time that you’re looking for the same thing.  For example, you did the “Seo Services” query and found AbsolutePlacementToday.com– You can now push the +1 that displays on the top right hand corner of the listed result and Google will automatically push it up to the top of your individual search results.

Search with a Minus –

Let’s say you’re doing research for your fantasy football team and looking for stats on players.  If you’re thinking about snagging Donovan McNabb but you want to know what he’s done since leaving the Eagles, you can search like this: “Donovan McNabb stats” -“Philadelphia Eagles”.  Make sure to put a space before the minus sign but no space after.  This will tell Google to return results on his stats unrelated to his time with the Eagles.

Search by Using InUrl:

If you use InUrl in your searches, Google will only return results that have the searched term in its url.  See here: InUrl: “Designer Shoes”

Search with a Plus Sign +

You can manipulate results with a plus sign in the same way you can with a minus sign.  If you’re looking for schools that offer online college degrees, your search might look like this: “University” +”Online College Degrees

There you go!  Now you’re ready to search like a pro!

Being a Sore Loser Pays Off

We all know what we’re supposed to say when we lose….  “I played my hardest and that’s all I can do”, “It doesn’t matter whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game”, “If I had to lose, I’m glad it was a loss to (insert biggest competitor/nemesis here )”.  All of that is fine and dandy if you want to settle for being a loser and feel better about it.  And it seems to be the movement in today’s society; acceptance of defeat whether it’s about sports, weight, school, pretty much anything that challenges us.  I’m not saying you can always change the outcome.  There’s a lot to be said for grace in a loss…  Such as the recent World Cup Final against Japan.  There is nothing that can be done now to change how that game ended.  The only thing those girls can do is keep working as hard as they can, keep perfecting their game and get better for the future.  That’s it.

Change the Game

But how about when an outcome can, in fact, be changed?  Everyone knows the movie ‘Rudy’, right?  He didn’t settle for being told “No, you’re just not that good” and “You’re just too small”.  He was the kid that all the cards were stacked against.  He was dyslexic, small, slow and from a family of 14 kids.  He was never going to naturally just kill the game of football.  But, he was not going to take defeat either.

rudy-pic-150x150Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger was rejected 3 times before he got accepted into Notre Dame.  He wasn’t even really a walk on to the football team.  He was on the practice squad.  His job was simply to be an opposing jersey for the varsity team’s practices.  But I think he was a sore loser.  It made him mad and pushed him harder to hear things like, “You can’t do it”, “You’ll never be good enough”, “You’re not smart enough”….  They drove him to be the best he possibly could.  He didn’t settle for showing up in a practice jersey and going through the motions, jumping around a little and waving his arms and jogging from place to place.  I believe he sprinted out onto the field, he gritted his teeth, took things into his own hands and wore the varsity players out!  He made them be the best they could be by doing absolutely everything within his power to make them play harder and think about their game.

Capitalize on Your Losses

My challenge is this, be a sore loser.  I don’t mean go around trashing your competitors or acting out any sorts of sabotage and revenge.  Get angry.  Let coming in second, third and fourth place consume you.  Use it to re-evaluate your game, your strategies, your practices and expose your weaknesses.  Then attack it.

Apple got tired of being second to PC’s.  They got angry about it.  So, they launched what is arguably one of the most successful campaigns in marketing history and are still climbing.  Who doesn’t at least have an iPod these days?  You’d have to have been living under a rock somewhere to have missed the Justin Long commercials, right?  They decided to change up what they were doing and push to be recognized.

Be a Sore Loser

If you’re tired of not being the best at what you do; it’s time to change your strategy.  The race is on to come out on top in organic search rankings and the game has changed.  If you’re not consistently asking questions about how to be better and learning from the pros about the best methods for optimal rankings; then you’re falling behind.  Because if you’re not winning, you’re losing.  Are you a sore loser?

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Thank you for considering Absolute as your affordable SEO company. I know you have several options in SEO Services for your website placement and hope you let us earn your business. I promise to be part of your project and to treat it as if it were my own. After all, "IT IS". Though Absolute does reserve the right to decline your website project, we look forward to hearing from you.

Tom Bates | President | Google+