Monday, November 30, 2009

Today's Marketing Tip: Effective Keyword Research

To succeed in the game of search engine optimization you must focus on effective keyword research. By choosing the right keywords you can succeed at the SEO game. I have personally worked with hundreds of clients seeking number one rankings but who have given little if any focus on keyword research. This is incredibly important when your site is competing against well ranked sites that have been in the top ranking for some time.

The first step is finding a keyword that isn't all that competitive. Once you do, the next step is to make sure that the keyword you've selected gets enough traffic. Don't overlook this important aspect of keyword research. I worked with a company that was proud of their number one rankings. When I did some research to discover the type of traffic they could expect, I found less than one hundred searches per month on the keyword they selected. Even with top rankings, they would never see the traffic they expected.

After finding a keyword or keyword phrase that is not competitive but receives an sufficient amount of traffic, you should spend time researching your competition for that keyword. An effective technique is to visit each of the top ranked sites, competing for the chosen keyword, and analyze them. Pay particular attention to the Google Page Rank of competing sites and number of inbound links. If sites are well established and have been online for a long time, it may be difficult to outrank them.

After you have selected the keywords you want to compete for, it's time to enhance your web pages using the chosen keywords. Begin by enhancing your meta tags, page titles, and copy, including your keywords where appropriate. By including your keywords in this manner, you're indicating to search engines what your web site is about. This allows search engines to rank your site for appropriate keywords. In addition to the on page factors, Google takes into consideration a variety of off page factors to determine web site ranking. Off page optimization involves generating links from third party websites. Focus your efforts on link building through article directories, web site directories, blogs, social bookmarking sites, and other sites.

When focusing on link building, you should plan to implement link building strategies on a regular basis. Focus on attracting links from sites within your given niche. You should also be focused on sites that have an established age, Google PR, and other authority attributes. When attracting in bound links, do so in a manner that is slow and steady. Building links too quickly can have a negative impact on your web site as search engines may believe you are arbitrarily building links. Once you have determined the right keywords and have taken care of your on-page optimization strategies it's time to focus on off page strategies to improve rankings.

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Monday, November 9, 2009

Today's Marketing Tip: Article Submitters

If you're into online marketing, I'm sure you've heard about article submitters.  The concept is pretty straight forward.  The concept of article marketing begins with original content.  After writing a 400 - 900 word article, you carefully construct an "About the author" box which includes a link back to our website.

You then publish this article to your web site and wait a couple of days to ensure that it's been visited by website spiders which have identified the content as originating from your site first.  Then, you take this content and distribute it throughout the web.  One easy way to do this is with the help of Article Directories.  

Over the past few years, article directories have been popping up all over.  This is because they serve as a great resource for web site owners and can easily provide tons of back links to your web sites and blogs.  By including you link in the article, you're passing link juice from third party web sites to your own.  

If you're not using article marketing to drive potential customers to your site, I suggest you start doing so.  Not only do you generate traffic, but you can use this technique to build search engine optimization rankings as well.  Start with sites like EzineArticles and promote your content on a regular basis.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Marketing Tips For Improving Your Online Conversions

Succeeding online takes more than targeted traffic. You not only have to attract the right audience, but get them to convert in some way. Many people think that conversion are all about buying on the spot. The reality is that for many businesses, the key to conversion is not on site but rather through their list.

If you're already online, you probably have a list of some kind. Whether you have 100 names or many more, your list is your greatest ally in succeeding online. And keep in mind that you have the right to email individuals who have emailed you as well as signed up for your list. Many web marketers overlook all of the individuals who have submitted questions and comments as being potential prospects. To improve conversion rates, you must focus on building your list from your traffic and utilizing that list effectively.

There are a variety of productive ways to utilize your list. Begin with an auto responder service. Auto responders allow you to set up an automatic communication stream that works twenty four hours a day seven days a week. You simply set up all of your communications in advance so that users, upon registering, are scheduled to receive emails at set intervals. This is ideal for moving potential customers through the decision making process.

Another way to use your list properly is to communicate pre-sell information about new products, services, or programs. By creating a sense of anticipation, your list will perform. Many products lend themselves to this type of list utilization. Although notification periods vary, letting you list know about upcoming events or products available for a limited time creates significant interest and leads to conversions. Don't under estimate the power of pre-notification.

The third way that you can use a list to improve conversion is through list growth. As your list grows, your total conversions increase as well. Ten percent of a hundred is a lot less appealing than ten percent of a thousand. Focus on building your list with the help of your list members. If you have something valuable to offer, encourage them to share with others who may benefit. This list growth serves you over time.

The last methods for improving conversions is constant communication. If your customers are not in the buying mood, staying in touch puts you at the top of their decision tree when considering a purchase. Your best bet is to develop a communication vehicle that doesn't over or under communicate. As always, proper process should be followed for opt outs. Regardless, don't email and stop unless someone opts out.

The time to start building your email list is now. In parallel, be sure to focus your energies on leveraging that list using the proper techniques. Having a great list is fine but unless you utilize it properly, you'll never see the true value inherent in the list itself.

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