Quick and Dirty SEO Primer for Bloggers

If you’re a blogger, you probably already know that SEO (search engine optimization) is an essential part of getting your blog posts “out there” and in front of your readers. But in my experience, bloggers don’t get the full picture when it comes to putting together the pieces for optimal search engine performance. Some bloggers rely too heavily on page views or ad clicks. Others employ keywords to a detrimental degree. Many don’t even bother to research keywords before starting a blog post. When it comes to getting your blog noticed, you need to make SEO work for you. And to do that, you need to coordinate your editorial efforts to unite around a singular goal: reaching your audience and converting them to loyal customers. I promised this would be quick and dirty, so let’s go. [text_with_frame id="368c1dbfefba91dceb946d322e0e86bc" content="‹¨›p‹˜›‹¨›em‹˜›If you find this article helpful consider giving it a share‹¯›nbsp;‹¨›/em‹˜›?‹¨›/p‹˜›" line_color="rgba(0,0,0,.07)" text_font="body" heading_font="heading" animation="none" animation_speed="2" animation_delay="0" __fw_editor_shortcodes_id="e6852c2dacc162bc8c34ba646905e841" _fw_coder="aggressive"][/text_with_frame] The Quick: SEO is based on complex algorithmic logic. You can’t “trick” your way into a favorable SEO ranking by using those easy, ridiculous tips you find on blogging sites that promise you can make six figures blogging in x number of days. This includes tactics like: Asking for page views from random people in Facebook groups Asking for ad clicks from the same people Keyword stuffing Filling out a form that promises distribution to some number of search engines Neglecting site design and mobile optimization Stop using these tactics. They won’t boost your SEO. But they will: Skyrocket your bounce rate Bloat ad click numbers and make you lose out on future campaigns with reputable companies Make you look like a horrible…

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Do Keywords Still Matter in Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

What keywords are you ranking for?You want your website to rank for words and phrases that your ideal customers are using in their search queries.Some online marketers still advocate for a high percentage of the words on any page containing the key words or phrases you are attempting to rank for. Other online marketers are touting a new era of interconnected topical and contextual ranking methods that utilize keywords more deftly.This has led many businesses (and organizations) to question whether or not keywords still matter in their SEO strategies. Psst! Keywords still matter for SEO... but shouldn't be used quite like they were in the 2000s. https://www.youtube.com/embed/lNk7n_V3uqM What's a keyword anyway? A "keyword" or "key phrase" contains the idea or topic your content is about. If, for example, you run a cleaning business and you write a post about best window cleaning methods some of the natural keywords for that content may be "clean", "windows", "wash", "how to", and others. Hopefully, if your content is well written, many of these keywords would show up in close proximity to one another within the same sentence to make up a few "key phrases" or "long tail keywords". If your content is naturally using keywords that your target market is searching for you have a higher chance of driving organic search traffic over time. Effective keywords are, essentially, the topics and ideas on the minds (and screens) of both your business and your ideal customers. The obsession with keywords Search engines still primarily crawl text when determining what your webpage is about. (That's why lengthy well-written content still matters online). Consequently, at one time, the most important part of your SEO strategy was…

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How to Use Business Reviews to Boost Your Organic Search Results

Your business is awesome. You know it, we know it, but do your potential customers know how great you are? Having a wealth of happy customers may be the best word of mouth strategy but it does little to boost your organic search results online. When you transfer this word of mouth power to the Web great things happen! This is why many businesses are including online business reviews as part of their overall search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. You can use business reviews to boost your organic search results and drive additional traffic to your website. Online business reviews may be just the confidence boost your potential customers need before clicking on your link. [text_with_frame id="368c1dbfefba91dceb946d322e0e86bc" content="‹¨›p‹˜›‹¨›em‹˜›If you find this article helpful consider giving it a share‹¯›nbsp;‹¨›/em‹˜›?‹¨›/p‹˜›" line_color="rgba(0,0,0,.07)" text_font="body" heading_font="heading" animation="none" animation_speed="2" animation_delay="0" __fw_editor_shortcodes_id="e6852c2dacc162bc8c34ba646905e841" _fw_coder="aggressive"][/text_with_frame] Searchers Rely on Business Reviews Many of your ideal customers do not know who you are yet. They need to be introduced to you and your great product or service. Unfortunately, too many people think of online marketing as tricking the-great-Google-list-making-robot into including you near the top of its list. To the contrary, successful online marketing is about building relationships - not lists. Someone needs to introduce your ideal customer to you - their ideal solution. That someone is often Google. Yet Google listing you doesn't carry much emotional weight. Searchers tend to trust you more if you are on page one but there is still little emotional connection. Relational marketing happens often on social media. Yet it can happen on Google, Yelp, and industry specific websites as well! Business reviews are one of the most effective means of having your business introduced to…

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The Mobile Trend

Online browsing habits have changed greatly over the last decade. No longer are users relying on their PCs for opening your emails, searching for your services, or purchasing your products. The majority of hours spent, search queries made, and emails opened are now from mobile devices. The smartphone trend has changed and will continue to change the Web. A slew of new smartphones are expected in 2018 including new iPhones (likely a total of three new handsets), new Google Pixels, and the LG G7. Innovation in mobile has slowed but not stopped with manufacturers now releasing handsets with always listening voice assistants, multiple cameras to detect depth, facial recognition, and processors faster than most office PCs. Thankfully your website can look beautiful on these mobile devices. You may not even need to completely rebuild your website to accomplish this. There are multiple solutions to mobile optimize your website including separate mobile URLs, adaptive design, and responsive design. Regardless of which method you choose to optimize your site the statistics show that your website must be mobile optimized to continue to generate traffic and convert visitors. An outstanding website is mobile optimized. Sales In 2016 the CEO of Intel, Brian Krzanich, stated that the upgrade cycle for PCs was slowing from an average of four years to an average of five to six years. He stated that "Right now, it's easier to move your phone to a new phone than your PC to a new PC". This comparison is telling. Buyers are using their phones to replace some of what their PCs do and PC sales are suffering. At the close of 2016 smartphone buyers were upgrading their devices at an…

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How Your Business Can Leverage Google’s Longer Search Snippets

What is a search snippet? A search snippet is a description of or an excerpt from a webpage. The descriptions you see in search engine result pages (SERPs) are search snippets. What is a meta-description? A meta-description is a description of a webpage set by the site itself using structured metadata. Many search snippets you see in SERPs are set by the pages' meta-descriptions. What did Google change? Google has doubled the maximum length of search snippets from 160 characters to 320 characters. It is important to note that Google has not expanded all search snippets. So some web pages will show longer search snippets and some will continue to show shorter snippets depending on the meta-descriptions set and the search queries made. [text_with_frame id="368c1dbfefba91dceb946d322e0e86bc" content="‹¨›p‹˜›‹¨›em‹˜›If you find this article helpful consider giving it a share‹¯›nbsp;‹¨›/em‹˜›?‹¨›/p‹˜›" line_color="rgba(0,0,0,.07)" text_font="body" heading_font="heading" animation="none" animation_speed="2" animation_delay="0" __fw_editor_shortcodes_id="e6852c2dacc162bc8c34ba646905e841" _fw_coder="aggressive"][/text_with_frame] Will your existing links show longer search snippets? Your existing links may or may not show longer search snippets. Whether they do or not depends on what is searched for, the content you have written on your page, and the meta description you have set. There are two types of search snippets that show in SERPs: 1. Search snippets generated from your page's content Most of the longer search snippets Google is showing are excepts from webpages. This allows them to better show the context of keywords within the body of a webpage. When someone searches for something on Google - like a "free coloring page" (hey, I print stuff for my toddlers, alright?) - Google will return results relevant to those keywords. Some of these results will show longer snippets lifted from the webpage. 2.…

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What is SEO? (And Why Should You Care?)

SEO is a hot buzzword when it comes to online business and advertising. But what is SEO exactly? And why does it matter? In short, SEO - or search engine optimization, as the term is properly named - is: “the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine.” This is still a fairly broad concept, with nearly endless interpretations. And indeed, many people do interpret SEO in very different ways. The problem with open interpretation of SEO is that it’s simply not a factor that’s open to individual interpretation. Not yours. Not that of your web developer. Not that of your college web marketing professor. Sure, each of these people might have some right information regarding SEO. But most people haven’t the foggiest idea what they’re talking about. If you’re a blogger and are a little clueless about SEO, that’s alright. But if you’re a web developer who’s “proficient in the latest web technologies and SEO”, then you’d better darn well know the right way to interpret - and implement - SEO. This post examines some of the specifics of SEO and how making slight tweaks to your website can drastically improve your site’s rankings and save you from making rookie mistakes that damage your search engine performance. Reaching Customers Through SEO While SEO may seem like a somewhat obscure topic - after all, who can really understand what a search engine “thinks”? - it’s critically important for the main thing your website exists for: reaching new customers. Think about your last few Google searches. Were you looking for a…

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