Archive | June, 2013

Using Buyer’s Guides To Boost Your SEO

Buyer’s Guide is a common SEO practice, particularly among e-commerce sites. However, if people can be a little more creative, they can be used in other types of site as well, like financial services for example.

Buyer’s guides are popular because they fulfill many criteria for effective on page SEO. They are naturally rich in keywords, compact in character count and original. They also enable you to link to your main target category and popular product pages with relevant anchor text, thus boosting their effectiveness. Potential customers also love buyer’s guides if you are doing them right. They are a great research resource in the early ‘information gathering’ stages of the purchasing decision process.

Buyer guides help your brand become embedded in the customer’s mind as trusted authority. Later on, when your consumers are ready to buy, you are already on the shortlist of the trusted vendors.

Six Tips to Create An SEO Strategy Based on Buyer’s Guide

1. Target  Your Audience

You may be writing for existing customers who have come back to your site. These people may also be completely new customers who have arrived at the site through a search engine query. What they have in common is that they are searching for information? Assume they know nothing. What would you tell a friend when they were just starting think about making a considered purchase? Picture this in your mind, and soon you will be starting to target the appropriate audiences.


2. 
Aim Your Buyer’s Guides

Essentially, the aim of buyer’s guides is to be an ‘How To’ guide, so that the customer can make consideration before buying something. Typical information may include:

  • Key A/B decisions to be made early in the decision-making process, e.g. for cars it could be manual or automatic, for suitcases it could be hard-shelled or soft-sided.
  • Main generic characteristics of the product category, e.g for electric toothbrushes, it could be oscillating rotary brushes and sonic vibrating brushes.
  • Features to look for. Explain the benefits and demonstrate why some items are more expensive.
  • Functional choices versus personal choices.  Make it clear when there is a reason to choose one type of product over another and when it is simply down to a matter of personal preference.

3. Additional Ideas for SEO

  • To target certain keywords, include them in the headings and sub-heads as these are given more weight by search engines.
  • If possible, include links inserted to other web pages on the site, either generic categories or specific products.
  • It’s not a good idea to link to off-site web pages, as this encourages the reader to leave your site. A typical example might be a link to a national database of recycling centres for electrical waste on a Buyer’s Guide for washing machines. This may be helpful for the customer, but resist the temptation.

4. Watch Your Tone of Voice

It is very important for your buyer’s guides to be impartial and neutral, so that it is a trusted source of information. For this reason the tone of voice may be less chatty and more passive than selling copy on other parts of the website. You should avoid any “signal words” that urging people to buy something. For example, instead of phrases like ‘Enjoy a blissful night’s sleep’, say ‘Many people find that an orthopedic pillow helps them sleep better and wake more refreshed’.

The tone should be:

  • Authoritative
  • Unbiased
  • Helpful and friendly, but not overly chatty
  • Concise yet comprehensive
  • Interesting. You want your customers to read to the end.

It is also helpful to incorporate bullet point lists, diagrams, tables and infographics where appropriate.


5. 
Make A Structure

Remember that the aim of the buyer’s guides is to provide informed, useful advice which positions your brand as a helpful expert and trusted vendor. To achieve this, a successful buyer’s guide presents options to the customer as a filter, starting with the main decisions which influence the purchase, exploring the options within each main options.


6.
 Make Several Parameters

Buyer’s guides are not expected to be updated regularly, so you should take a good care to write them. You have to make them ‘everlasting’ advice. Therefore, avoid talking about specific products where possible. Instead, you can focusing on generic types of products and key features to look out for.

Whilst your Buying Guide should be impartial, it is, of course, sensible to structure the content and refer to the information towards the products you actually sell. The main point should be on selling the expertise of your brand and encourage the reader to click-through to the products. Never try to sell any product within the buyer’s guide. By being a truly impartial and valuable source of information, the buyer’s guide is a great way to build a long term relationship with the brand and boost your SEO.

SEO Tips: How to Redesign Your Content Strategy

website marketing and development at sydney australia

Have you ever done an SEO in order to beat your competitor on SERP?

Some people might argue that it’s unhealthy to limit the market as a duel between two opposite rivals, especially in today’s fast-developing world. However, some marketing leaders like to do this kind of stuff to motivate their staff. They believe that you can build your team’s competitive spirit when they can define their “enemy”.

Aside from the pros and cons, there is a good chance that you will eventually stumble on a company that thinks this way.

How to Redesign Your Content Strategy

To do this, The Website Marketing Group team is suggesting to use the following model in order to visualize the content landscape:

By using the following methodology, you should be able to build a content strategy, which enables you to:

  • Expand your visibility into areas currently considered business threats.
  • Understand in detail the dogfight between you and your competitor, as well as how to gain the upper hand in this battle.
  • Expand your visibility through a focus on where your audience is being underserved.

The methodology puts two companies against each other across an unlimited number of keywords, using search volume and click curve data to understand each brand’s current reach. It then classifies each keyword so that they can be slotted into the model above.

Keywords & Click Curve Data

You will need as many relevant keywords as you can lay your hands on, grouped by topic. For each keyword you will need:

  • Your organic rank.
  • Your competitor’s organic rank.
  • Exact match local search volume.

You will also need click curve data in a separate table. Once you have that data in two tables you’ll first need to estimate current traffic for both you and your competitor from each keyword. Do this by multiplying the exact match search volume by the CTR figure corresponding to current rank (simple vlookup to retrieve this).

Measure Traffic Differences

Work out the percentage difference between your traffic and your competitors. If your competitor receives more traffic for a keyword, the figure should be negative.

Use if statements to ensure that where both brands receive no traffic a figure of 0 is returned, or a large positive figure (I use 1000 percent) if your brand receives a lot of traffic and your competitor receives none at all. You need to use these statements because percentage change involves division and if 0 figures you will have errors returned.

Classify Each Keyword

Classify each keyword based on our content landscape model using “nested if” statements. The criteria is described below:

Once we have applied your nested if statement across all keywords and related each keyword to a place on the content landscape we can use filters to quickly isolate the keywords we’re interested in.

Be Visual

Use pivot tables to quickly show the number of searches in each sector, and other details, such as how much traffic each brand is getting within the dogfight sector, or the size of the business success sector relative to the business threat sector.

Here, your keyword grouping comes into their own as you can visualize both the overall content landscape and the landscape for just a small subset of similar terms. Despite the lack of a proportionally sized Venn, you have been able to visualize for your client how well their content serves the consumers need, as well as indicating which topics they should be focusing their content creation on in order to take the SEO fight to their main competitor and steal their SEO market share.

Prioritize Terms

As a next step, you could prioritize the most important terms, a process which enables you to make the task of the content ideation much more disciplined and less prone to becoming one endless, unfocused brainstorm. Simply take all the opportunity and threat keywords from above and estimate how difficult it will be to improve ranking for these keywords using a tool, like keyword difficulty estimator. You can then multiply the difficulty score by the search volume for each keyword to give a weighted score for how important each keyword is.

Brainstorm

Hold a brainstorming session focused on the topics identified as a priority in the graph above.

Awaken by Amazon: Donate Your Books and Get Its Kindle Version for Free

Another nice and creative campaign has been found by our team this morning. With its Awaken campaign, Amazon gives you the opportunity to share your books with 780,000,000 illiterate people in India. The procedure is as simple as this: when you buy a book on Amazon, you will be able to re-use the box to store your old books, and ship them to people in India. For the exchange,  you will receive the free e-book format of the same title  for every book you share in your Kindle. Quite interesting campaign, right?

Email Subjects and Why They are Very Important for You

With the high rising of email volumes, ‘clutter’ becomes an issue for recipients. Any serious business person will think that having a strong subject line is very important since people rate the subject line as one of the biggest motivators for opening an email.

This article contains a summary of highlights, which is based on a random sample of more than 90,000 email campaigns, each with a minimum list size of 5,000, totaling more than 2 billion emails.

The keywords are scored by relative open, click, click-to-open, and unsubscribe rate. As such a result of 20% should be read as “20% higher than the average.” (In other words, if the average were 20%, the open rate would be 24%.) This article focuses on open, click, and click-to-open rates only. Here is the complete table. (click to enlarge)

Here is the summary of the results by theme:

1. B2B Publishing

  • Content: Subject lines containing the “alert” keyword had far better-than-average open (57.8%) and click (32.9%) rates, though click-to-open (CTO) rates were only 2.1% above-average. By contrast, “newsletter” had below-average open (-11.2%), click (-52.6%), and CTO (-46.7%), with “report” and “top stories” also below-average in each metric. The researchers note that content marketing terms may be saturating consumers, and that marketers should focus on differentiation. Content terms such as “breaking” and “editor” saw strong rates, easily above-average for each metric. Also of note, subject lines with multiple stories delineated by pipes (*|**|***) achieved above-average open (27.5%), click (90.7%) and CTO (14.2%) rates.
  • Date: These were a mixed bag. “This Week” and “monthly” both fell below-average in each of the 3 metrics, while “weekly” was above-average in opens (27.5%) and clicks (24.7%) but below-average in CTOs (2.2%). The only date term to be above-average in each metric was “daily,” which sported an open rate 12.6% above the average, a click rate 35.8% above-average, and a CTO rate 20.7% above-average.
  • Subscriptions: These tended to fare more poorly than content or date terms. “Access” (-9.9%), “free” (-11.1%), “renew” (-21.9%), “subscription” (-15.8%) and “trial” (-14.1%) all saw below-average click-to-open rates, with each of those save for “renew” (22.6%) also below-average in click rates. At the same point, they each sported above-average open rates, except for “subscription” (-8.2%). In fact, “subscription” was below-average in each metric. Only subject lines containing the £ symbol performed above-average in all 3 metrics, and that’s obviously subject to targeting, as the symbol may be irrelevant to many recipients.

2. B2C Publishing

  • Content: Unlike with B2B publishers, subject lines containing the the term “newsletter” saw above-average open (6.4%), click (16.5%) and CTO (9.5%) rates. But, that was overshadowed by the stronger performances of subject lines containing the terms “video,” and “review,” along with those with multiple stories delineated by pipes, or commas. Subject lines containing the question mark symbol fared the worst, with open (-16.9%), click (-22.2%) and CTO (-6.4%) rates all below-average. The term “special” had below-average click and CTO rates, but above-average open rate.
  • Date: As with B2B publishers, the term “monthly” did not fare well, below-average in open (-4.9%), click (-24.6%) and CTO (-20.7%) rates. “Daily” was easily the top performer, scoring way above-average in open (35.1%), click (115%) and CTO (59.2%) rates.
  • Money: These generally tended very poorly. Subject lines containing the £ symbol were below-average in each metric, as were those containing “free,” “% off,” and “discount.” Only “half price” managed to stay above-average in open rates (9.7%), although it also fell behind in click (-44.1%) and CTO (-49.1%) rates.
  • Subscriptions: If the data is to be trusted, B2C publishers should avoid “last chance”, “subscription,” and “trial,” keywords in their subject lines, with each of these below-average in the 3 metrics tracked for this article. (“Trial” was by far the worst performer, with a click rate 74.6% below the average. “Limited” saw above-average open (23.7%) and click (16.4%) rates, but below-average CTO (-5.9%) rates, while “on sale now” was slightly below-average in open rates, but slightly above-average in click and CTO rates.
  • Miscellaneous: B2C publisher emails containing the term “Twitter” performed above-average in open (12.2%), click (18.1%) and CTO (5.3%) rates. “Facebook” was not as lucky with open rates (-6.7%), but also fared better than the average in click (15.2%) and CTO (23.4%) rates. “Deals” performed relatively well in opens (7.3%), but dropped below average in click (-12.3%) and CTO (-18.3%) rates.

3. B2B Events

  • Product: These tended to fare poorly, with “conference,” “forum,” “training,” and “webinar,” each seeing below-average rates in the 3 metrics. Only “exhibition” escaped that fate with a CTO rate 7.5% above-average, although it was below-average in open (-8.2%) and click (-1.4%) rates.
  • Discounts: “Early bird,” “discount,” and “offer” were below-average in open rates, but really tailed off in click and CTO rates, at roughly 30% or more below-average in those metrics. “Free” saw a slightly below-average open rate (-3%), but jumped ahead of the average in click (3.7%) and CTO (6.9%) rates.
  • Urgency: Simply put, the data shows that “Don’t miss” is a good bet, but “Last chance” and “to go” should be avoided.
  • Features: Email recipients apparently were none too fond of subject lines containing “agenda,” “industry,” “keynote,” and “speakers,” but were more favorable to the term “brochure,” which was about average for opens, but above-average for clicks (9.7%) and CTOs (10.2%).
  • Benefits: “Learn” performed the worst out of this group of terms, while “exclusive” was slightly above-average in each metric. “ROI” scored best, with above-average open (9.3%), click (42.7%) and click-to-open (30.5%) rates.
  • Call to action: B2B event marketers may want to pay more attention to these. “Badge,” “download,” “invitation,” and “registration” all scored above-average in each of the 3 metrics, with “download” overall seeing the best results. (Note that there were discrepancies in the unsubscribe rates of these terms, but those are not taken into account for the purposes of this article.)
  • Free stuff: “Game” was below-average in each of the 3 metrics, while iPad won out in a battle of tablets with Kindle. Subject lines with the term “iPad” were above-average in opens (1.9%), clicks (17.5%) and CTOs (15.2%), while those with the term “Kindle” were below-average in each of those metrics. “Win” was slightly below-average in open rate, but 30+% higher in click and CTO rates.

4. B2C Events

  • Money: Each of these currency symbols – $, £, and € – performed better than average in open rates, but worse in click and CTO rates. The dollar sign showed the biggest variance, scoring farthest above-average in open (25.5%) rates, but also furthest below-average in click (-74.9%) and CTO (-80%) rates.
  • Ticket sales: The same dynamic mostly applied to these terms also. “2 for 1,” “cheap,” “discount,” “early bird,” “offer,” and “tickets,” were all above-average in open rates, while being below-average in click and CTO rates. “Save” was the worst performer, below-average in each metric.
  • Show features: Once again, the majority of these terms (“exclusive,” “explore,” “program,” and “reasons”) did well getting opens, but were below-average in click and CTO rates. “Preview” and “win” managed to get above-average open and click rates, but fell below the average in click-to-open rates.
  • Urgency: These terms again showed the same pattern: “last chance,” “meet” and “still time” each achieved above-average open rates, but fared far below the average in click and click-to-open rates.
  • Call to action: At the risk of sounding like a broken record, “opens,” “register,” “tickets,” “visit,” and “!” each followed the same dynamic outlined above. “Register” fared the best out of those terms, with the highest open rate (56.6% above average), and click (-0.8%) and CTO (-36.7%) rates closest to the average.
  • Free stuff: “Game” was below-average in each of the 3 metrics, as it was with the B2B event sector, while iPad again won out in the battle of tablets with Kindle.

5. Retail and E-Commerce

  • Incentives: Retail and e-commerce marketers should avoid including “cheap,” “free,” or “save” in their subject lines, as each of these fared poorly. By contrast “% off” and “sale” both scored above-average in each of the 3 metrics. It was a mixed bag for “half price” and “win,” with the former managing above-average open rates (11.5%) and the latter above-average CTO rates (9.2%).
  • Calls to Action: It was an ugly performance for “buy,” with these emails seeing open rates 19.3% below the average, click rates 59.1% below the average, and click-to-open rates 49.3% below-average. “Order” fared a bit better, getting over the hump with open rates (6.2%), but behind in click (-19.8%) and CTO (-24.5%) rates.
  • Events: As a whole, subject lines containing event terms performed very badly. “Birthday,” “Christmas,” “holiday,” and “summer” each were below-average in opens, clicks, and click-to-opens, and “launch” only avoided that fate by barely crossing the average in open rates (0.3% above-average).
  • Benefits: “Free delivery” was the big winner here, with open (35.9%), click (81.3%) and click-to-open (33.4%) rates all far above the average. “Available” and “new” turned in decent performances, with above-average open and click rates and below-average CTO rates. “Essential” and “offer” did not get the desired responses from consumers, faring below-average in each metric.
  • Superlatives: Recipients did not find subject lines containing superlatives to be particularly engaging. “Fantastic,” “good,” and “exclusive” were below-average in each metric, while “great” (14.7%) and “latest (95.4%) were only able to see above-average rates for opens.

6. Charities

  • Donations: First the worst performers: “gift,” “give,” “order,” “presents,” and “support” each failed to generate even average open, click, or click-to-open rates. “Donate,” “join” and “member” scored above the average in opens, but were behind in clicks and click-to-open rates. “Volunteer” fared well in open (55.6%) and click (44.9%) rates, while falling off the pace in click-to-opens (-6.9%). It was the same story for “help.”
  • Money: Subject lines containing the £ symbol fared poorly, while those with “% off” hewed close to the average in each of the 3 metrics.
  • Events: “Challenge,” “Christmas,” “event,” “marathon,” and “run” each performed better than average in open rates, but below-average in click and click-to-open rates.
  • Content: This was a mixed bag, although overall most content terms fared poorly. “Action,” “campaign,” “child,” “inspiration,” “lives,” “today,” “video,” “views,” and “win,” all failed in their attempts to generate responses from recipients, falling below the average in open, click, and click-to-open rates. “Difference” had poor click (-70.8%) and click-to-open (-75.3%) rates, but boasted an above-average open rate (18.2%). Of the group, “news,” “society” and “update” performed best, each generating above-average open and click rates. “News” in particular scored well with an open rate 60.7% higher than the average and a click rate 50.7% above-average. Even so, “news,” “society,” and “update” each had below-average click-to-open rates.

Snapkidz: A “Junior” Version of Snapchat

It looks like Snapchat is currently right in their peak growth period. It was just in April when Snapchat announced 150 million photos were shared through their app each day from 5 million daily active users, up from 60 million per day in February.

Then earlier in June, a major update to the app has been released. It aimed to improve the discovery of new friends and better manage your existing contacts. The update was fairly well received by users, with the most common feedback about the ever-so-slight logo change.

Snapchat has now announced via their blog that their service is sending 200 million photos per day, and has raised a fresh $60 million, giving Snapchat a valuation of around $800 million.

The “Snapkidz”

As another marketing variation, Snapchat has also released a ‘SnapKidz’ version of their app for users under the age of 13. There has always been a lot of speculation (and truth) the app is misused for sexting, and this feature is no doubt designed to protect a younger audience.

The Snapkidz feature as described on the Snapchat’s blog: “In the new iOS version, kids under the age of 13 are able to fill out the registration form, however their user information is not sent to us and an account is not created. Instead they are able to use “SnapKidz” a version of Snapchat that includes “an interface for taking snaps, captioning, drawing, and saving them locally on the device”, but does not support “sending or receiving snaps or adding friends”.

Big Data and How It Drives to Business-to-Business Personalisation

The days where people’s offering an individualized customer experience have been over. With the growth of big data may be bringing customization back. Plus, with the increasing of sophisticated data gathering and analysis, marketers now enable to identify online prospects and speak directly to their personal needs. Big companies such as Amazon (with its product recommendation system) have done this kind of practice for a long time. However, business-to-business personalisation may finally be catching up.

Today, business-to-business marketers are using personalisation both for inbound and outbound marketing efforts, in desktop or mobile. However, modern marketing personalization can stir up controversy, sparking questions about if it works and how to handle privacy concerns.

“A lot of people are buying [retargeting and Web personalization] services, but they haven’t spent a lot of time answering [questions about] if it works,” said David Bailey, president of DecisionLinks Inc., a provider of predictive lead intelligence systems.

Inbound Marketing Personalisation

Personalization is quickly moving beyond traditional banner-based remarketing to inbound marketing for both the Web and multichannel environments, said Rob Brosnan, principal analyst at Forrester Research.

Tailored inbound marketing can, for example, include serving up unique Web content based on a visitor’s profile or making specific product offers to returning customers. The market for these services—provided by companies such as Adobe, Causata, IBM, Maxymiser and Oracle—is growing by 40% a year and will keep growing, Brosnan said.

“The interesting thing is that most b2b companies already have the content to bring personalization,” said Mike Telem, VP-business development and co-founder of Insightera, a provider of marketing personalization software that enables companies to serve tailored content to website visitors. “The problem is that they don’t have ways to present that information.”

While inbound marketing personalization is relatively new, outbound marketing personalization—also known as retargeting or remarketing—has a longer history by Internet standards. In its simplest form, retargeting involves dropping a cookie into a prospect’s browser after they engage with a marketer’s brand in some capacity, then serving up banner ads specific to that user no matter where they go on the Internet (provided that they visit sites that are available to the ad network the marketer is using). That remarketing is possible with almost any Web-based interaction, whether it’s partly filling out a Web form, putting a product in a cart, visiting a website, opening an email, visiting a Facebook page or responding to direct mail. However, despite its rapid proliferation, there are still questions surrounding remarketing. As Bailey at DecisionLinks found out, it can be hard to get reliable numbers on its effectiveness. Transparency has been hard to find. A lot of agencies tweak their numbers or structure a campaign so it looks like it works, but it’s hard to tell. If the question is “Will they click back?’ The answer is yes.

However, will they end up buying in the end? It certainly seems like it will be worth our investment, but that’s primarily because we’re targeting lower-funnel prospects. They’re ready to buy. If they were higher up in the buying funnel, it would be harder to justify. Retargeting campaigns may also be vulnerable to mistakes, as marketers often miss an opportunity to expand the tactic across other touch points. Don’t just retarget website visitors, but retarget email openers, direct mail responders and consumers who make a purchase in a physical store.

A second mistake is related to how marketers attribute success. If a marketer is using a last-touch attribution approach, then the last contact to occur before the purchase will receive all of the credit for the conversion. Since retargeting is by definition triggered from another interaction, it typically occurs later in the purchase process, so it will receive a disproportionate amount of the credit.

Marketers also need to design engagement programs that will increase the frequency of customer website visits, otherwise, cookies used to identify customers essentially expire. It is better to put frequency caps in place on the number of times an ad can be served up and stopping a campaign when the prospect takes whatever action you’re trying to encourage. Following best practices can make retargeting useful in multiple ways. Retargeting is definitely effective for branding, but people don’t realize how effective retargeting can be in lead generation or lead nurturing, and moving leads further down the funnel.

Aside from the question of whether it works, the issue of privacy is constantly hovering around the issue of digital personalization—whether it is dropping cookies into people’s browsers and following them across the Internet or assembling a digital profile of a website visitor in real time and serving up adaptive content. On the other hand, it is important to note that display ad retargeting does not store any personal identifying information. It is a complex space and privacy is a concern but we should not infringing on anyone’s privacy.

The Future of Paid Search (Infographic)

Search engine’s paid search service has put itself as a highly viable, cost effective marketing channel. In 2011, paid search spending is expected to reach $34 billion. Worldwide, paid search is a $34 billion industry. In this infographic, The Website Marketing Group team will briefly explore all about paid search: it’s current state, where it’s going, and how the largest paid search vendors, such as Google & Bing, have divided up the market.

Facts and stats about paid search:

  • Worldwide, paid search is a $34 billion industry.
  • By 2016, paid search is expected to grow by 75% to become a $61.1 billion industry.
  • Since 2006, the amount spent on paid search has increased by 250%.
  • Google AdWords has a declining return on investment (ROI), down 12% as of 1/2011.
  • Bing & Yahoo Advertising has an increasing return on investment (ROI), up 10% as of 1/2011.
  • Paid search is currently bigger than radio, outdoor and cinema advertising.
  • The average cost per click is up 11% (year over year) for Google, and 4% for Bing.

The New Video Feature on Instagram

This week, Instagram have confirmed that they have equipped the version 4.0 of their app which now includes video functionality. This allows users to create short 15 second video clips and use 13 different filters to apply over the top.

Moreover, Instagram have really thought on how to make this feature best for users. They have even introduced a stabilization feature which you can apply to your video after you shoot it, thus makes your video “more professional”.

Instagram’s officials also released a number of new stats about the service:

  • 130 Million active users
  • 1 billion Likes per day
  • Over 16 billion photos uploaded

Take a look at this video:

Local SEO Checklist: Small Business Guide on How To Grow An Online Presence

google-algorithm

Because of constant changes of Google’s algorithm, many small to medium-sized businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to make their mark on the search engines. Big brands have big budgets, and can pay SEO agencies big monthly fees to optimise their website for competitive keyphrases. However, smaller businesses are getting left behind; watching their rankings slip and their conversion rate as well.

The main point here is: smaller business shouldn’t be competing on the same level as these big players. It is not right away, at least. The first step in any search engine optimisation campaign should see these businesses reaching out to the audience that is most likely to buy from them. That is the audience on their doorstep.

The Importance of Local SEO

The customer base in your local area is perhaps the most important tool in your marketing arsenal, and one that every business should be tapping into. By employing a local SEO strategy, you can increase your visibility both in the local area and online.

Thanks to the Google Venice updates, the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) are now filled with localised search results for relevant queries. For example, you can search ‘hairdressers’ without being logged in to your Google account and still see all the salons in your area. This, coupled with statistics that show 43% of Google search queries carry a local intent, localising your SEO strategy suddenly looks very interesting.

Today, The Website Marketing Group is going to show you exactly how you can implement a local SEO campaign for your website. Check out this checklist:

1. Competitor Audit

Before you can stand out from the competition, you need to know who they are. Carrying out a thorough competitor audit can help you benchmark their current success, and identify where you can fit into this market. Simply search “[your business type]” in [your area]” and carefully review both the organic and the local pages.

You should also check how competitive the keywords your competition is targeting are. While keywords and phrases with a local intent are naturally less competitive, you don’t want to make your life harder by targeting terms with huge – or even worse, no – local monthly searches.

2. On-Site SEO

On page optimisation is perhaps the most important stage in your local campaign. This is the mark-up that Google, Bing and the other search engines will use to determine what to rank your web pages for.

The elements to play close attention to here include:

  • Title tags, headings and meta data
  • Names, addresses and phone numbers
  • On-site content and blog

Meta descriptions are no longer classed as ranking factors but should still include your location. You also need to make sure that your local SEO is present on-site too. Include a full address and local telephone number on each page, your location in page headers, and in the content itself where it feels natural to do so.

With quality written content becoming an increasingly important factor in website rankings, you should pay close attention to your company blog. Fresh and engaging content will keep customers coming back from more, but you also have a great opportunity for publishing local content.

3. Local Pages

When searching for a business online, you will have noticed that Google+ for Business Pages now appear alongside the organic search results. By making the most of these local pages, you can double your chances of attracting local customers.

Both Bing and Google give you the chance to quickly and easily build an online presence for a regional term, with their local pages. Doing so, is easier than you think. Head to the Bing Business Portal, or Google+ for Business homepage to get started.

Carefully go through this process and fill in as much information as you can. Keep your address consistent across all your profiles, as this will further help your business appear in the SERPs for relevant local terms.

Remember as well, to encourage reviews on these local pages and these are a great way of enticing people to click through to your website and a ranking factor for these pages.

4. Offsite SEO

Once you’ve correctly optimised your website, you can begin a localised offsite SEO campaign.

This is a crucial factor that determines where your site will rank, with the search engines using the links pointing to your website as an important gauge in its importance and relevancy.

Link building strategy

Here are some ways you should start building links and citations for your website:

  • Directories – Including your website on a small number of relevant, local directories can be hugely advantageous. They help raise your profile, and increase your reach in the local area. Just be sure to include your physical address and local phone number to boost your SEO campaign.
  • Local companies – Local government websites, suppliers, businesses and other peers are also great places to look for a link back. If they have a resources page or something similar, try to build a presence.
  • Guest blogging – Providing quality content to other websites is a great way to share your expertise, build your industry authority, and get a link back to your website. Choose local websites where your specialist knowledge will attract customers.

5. Social Media

Social media marketing is a hugely powerful way to network with regional prospects. More than this though, it is an important step in maximising your local SEO campaign.

Facebook has Google Maps integration, allowing customers to get directions to your business. By syncing your address to this map, you can build on your local SEO campaign.

You should also be sure to write your address in your company description.

Likewise, Google+ has this important feature so be sure to take full advantage of it. Not only can customers find you easier, it sends signals to the search engines giving a much needed boost to your local SEO efforts.

Twitter also allows you to include your location on your profile, so be as accurate as you can. If you have multiple addresses, name them both as this will help ease any confusion customers might have. Social media is a great way to drive customers through the door, so make sure they can find it.

By following these tips, you will be able to develop a robust local SEO campaign for your business. The customers in your region are perhaps the most important market you should be tapping in to, so reach out to them when they need you. Local SEO is an important part of any businesses marketing mix, so be sure to run an intelligent and complete campaign.

Inspirational Interview by Tony Robbins with Frank Kern and John Reese (Video)

This interview is very motivating. Basically, the subject of the interview is about why people don’t take the necessary action to change their circumstances. The interview occurred because Frank and John were wondering why a lot of folks buy products that will help them, but then never take proper action.

Once we achieve that first step, once we have made that first bit of progress, we immediately see the possibilities and our progress shifts into high gear. Our job is to keep at it until that first breakthrough when we can actually see results, no matter how small.

Tony asks the question, what is it that is holding people back?

“Why aren’t these people starting? We all know that the answer is fear. The difference with you guys or me or whoever has followed through is, we’re MORE afraid of what life would be like if we don’t follow through than the person who is willing to settle for what they got, kind of hope it will change, maybe purchase something for the moment and then not follow through with it.”

What type are you? Are you afraid of starting something new or are you afraid that if you don’t, you are subject to a life of the mundane?

The most interesting part of this video is Tony’s diagram of the Holy Grail of Belief or Momentum. It is a culmination of interviews he has done over the years with a lot of people. It comes down to 4 principles that feed into each other.

Potential -> Action -> Results -> Beliefs

This simple chain of events is solely responsible for the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer! You are always somewhere in that chain and you are either spiraling upwards or downwards.

Your potential is always a product of your beliefs – whether they are benefitting or detrimental beliefs. Your beliefs are always a product of the results you have in life, which are always a direct product of the action you take. You can only take a certain amount of action, and that pertains to your belief about your potential.