Local SEO is vital to your business

Local SEO isn’t all about the mom-and-pop stores anymore. Basically, any business can reap the benefits that local SEO provides. Since Google did its update in 2014, the significance of local SEO is vital, many entrepreneurs focus their marketing strategy within their local community. Businesses who used local SEO before the update say they have seen a big increase after the update.

These moves are crucial because local SEO is vital to your marketing plan. However, over the years, I do believe that local SEO will continue to grow and be an important tool to every business, here is why.

Google thrives on local businesses

If you’ve done your homework properly, you will find out that Google has shown small amounts of favoritism to the smaller, newer companies. While most of its rankings have to do with the brand’s authority and history, Google also gives the people what they want; therefore, showing the more popular brands.

This all comes down to allowing small-business owners, who may only have limited resources to potentially break new ground. Google always provides free tools such as, Webmaster tools, Analytics, and so much more to help business owners increase their online traffic.

On-the-go searching

With all the phones, watches, tablets out there, you have to think your consumers will be performing a lot more on the go searches. They may be looking for a café within three miles or a café within a certain neighborhood. So, if you keep the local SEO in your marketing strategy not only will it boost your online presence, but it can also boost your presence for those on the go.

Competition is increasing

Every year, more and more businesses are opening up. You probably noticed that there a lot of businesses in your industry. However, that makes the competition that much more. Many business owners are finding even smaller niches just until they can get traffic online, but that doesn’t always need to happen. With a good marketing plan, you will see a huge difference.

These are just a few ways why local SEO is vital to one’s marketing plan. Of course, if done right, not only will have a great online presence, but you will also be searched locally too.

Increase your website traffic with these 4 tips

I know your company is important to you. I know how hard it is to get good quality traffic coming to your website too. Of course, you’ve been probably scouring the internet to increase your traffic for the past few hours and haven’t found anything, but those get quick rich schemes for $99, am I right? Well, luckily for you, you found Forever Writing. Forever Writing specializes in SEO, which can also bring traffic to your site, but if you are looking for more of a do-it-yourself, here are four tips you can implement within 5 minutes.

SEO

Keywords

When you are going to create content, you need to know the keywords people are going to use to search for said content. Every page should be built around the keywords that are vital to your company. This will require a lot of research and homework to perfect it.

Google can help you with your keywords. You know when you start typing into the search bar on Google, how it gives you suggestions for popular phrases and words people us to search. If you want to take it a little bit deeper, you can use the Google Keyword Planner, which will tell you all popular keywords. This tool will tell you pretty accurate numbers on how many average searches are performed on those keywords.

Image tags

Of course, the images are amazing, colorful, and add character to your website. However, in order for Google and other search engines to understand what the image are you need to tag your images. Basically, if there isn’t a tag or tags, Google will not know how to identify your image, and your image will be useless.

Meta description

A meta description can be found right under your URL on the search page. Its sole purpose is to give the consumer what the page is about, what will they learn, why should they click on it. You want your meta description to be engaging, truthful, and prompt the consumer to click on your link to find out more. It is wise to use call-to-action words such as “visit” and “learn” to engage people to find out why the information on your site is vital to their needs.

Backlinks

I cannot stress this enough. If you want to keep the consumer on your site, you need to backlink, backlink, backlink. You can backlink to your site, other content on your blog, and so much more. However, your backlinks should give your readers more useful information that can help build their relationship with you and your company. The more great information you provide, the more likely chance they will recommend your site and services to their friends and family.

These are just a few tips that can help you gain more traffic to your site. Of course, you won’t see the results overnight, but you will certainly relish the rewards later down the line.

SEO vs Content Marketing: Are you confused?

So, if you’ve been in business for quite some time, you are probably familiar with breakfast clubs and what they stand for. These are groups of people, usually locals that get together at an ungodly hour of the morning to discuss business such as, swapping leads, gossiping, and eating a fulfilling breakfast.

Now, I am not knocking on breakfast clubs, because they are extremely beneficial on the local front. For example, someone would stand up and tell you about their skill and give you a bit  about their skill and give you a helping hand on what they do, and how they do it.

However, where I am going with this is, many people, including those in the breakfast clubs don’t quite know the difference between SEO and content marketing.  Many people think they are essentially the same, but they are not. Here is why:

 

content marketing, seo,

Source: Wikipedia

What is SEO?

SEO is all about ranking higher in the search results. In order to do that, you need keywords, content, and a good website layout. However, if you are still concerned about what SEO is and want a deeper definition, check out SEO Basics: Cakes & Blind Dates Edition.

However, I do want to emphasis, it’s a lot about your website. You need to know a lot of different technical things that only you can see in your website back end.

What is content marketing?

In short, content marketing is any kind of marketing that involves creating and sharing content in order to gain customers. This type of content can be presented as blog posts, e-books, videos, photos, and much more.

What’s the confusion?

From the short explanations above, it should be pretty clear that the major difference between content marketing and SEO is that SEO has to do with more technical things such as structure of website, website design, and other back end website fun. While on the other hand, content marketing is all about getting noticed online with content that your company published.
Basically, with SEO, you will be making sure your website contains proper titles, descriptions, URLs, loads fast, has a great flow throughout the site, images; which have correct alt tags, and much more. Of course, this is the tip of the iceberg, to be honest.

 

However, with content marketing, you will need to figure out what type of content you want to publish and promote. You will need to figure out how to present it, so your target audiences see it.

Nonetheless, content marketing and SEO are different, but can get confused quite easily. Now, you should be well informed with the two concepts. Feel free to tell your colleagues the difference because, hey, you will look like the smart one.

Learn basic SEO in 5 minutes or less

If you are totally new to the SEO game and have more than five minutes to spare, you will want to start here. If you don’t have that much time to spare, but your boss wants you to be an SEO wizard, you came to the right place. This piece will provide you with the SEO basics you will need in five minutes or less.

ghostwriting, benefits, foreverwriting

Source: Flickr/hobvias sudoneighm

How do search engines work?

Well, the easiest way to explain what a search engine is will be how you explain yourself on a blind date. It is all about finding what you are all about, to bring the correct people into your life.

When people use search engines, they expect to get results based on a few characteristics:

Relevance: How closely related is this information to what they are looking for?

Authority: Does the website appear to be knowledgeable or credible on the topic?

Popularity: Will people find this site recommendable to other people looking for information on the topic?

So what is SEO?

SEO is simply a way of improving your odds of showing up when people look for information related to you.

In short, SEO is a way of improving your chances that someone will find you and your website on the internet. Basically, let’s use The Tales of a Broke College Student for example. So if you were to search for “benefits for a broke college student.” You will see that thetalesofabrokecollegestudent.blogspot.com appears throughout the first page. This is because they use SEO to attract their readers.

The importance of pages

Once you get the hang of how to reel in your potential customers, then you will want to lead them to a specific page of your site. For example, if you are trying to sell your services, you will want to reel them into your rates page, and so on and so forth.

Basically, the entire objective of SEO is to give people access to what they want and need, by providing them a variety of different pages to get there. You want to keep building up your customer’s interest.

Optimize!

The next step is to optimize your website. Your site needs to be easily accessed by search engines. So, you will need to make it easy to understand, so the search engines can figure out what you are, what do you have to offer.

Basically, what you need to do is be as descriptive as you possibly can with your content on each of your pages on your site. Also, create a better user experience, if you are unsure how this can be done, send out a survey to your customers and ask for their feedback. Not to mention, offering a little incentive will really get a great group of people to answer your survey with honest feedback.

Think big picture

Of course, SEO will not happen overnight, but that doesn’t mean don’t look at the big picture. SEO will take time, so have a plan on how you will get to the final result. It is crucial you always see the big picture at the end, when working with smaller goals. If you keep that in mind, you will be an SEO pro in no time.

Special: August 11th

Forever writing, logo

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You are probably wondering if there is a catch, but there isn’t. All niches are welcome, there are no quantity limits either. You will get your content the way you want it. However, this deal will not last long. The deal expires August 11th at 11:59p.m.

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Are keywords dead?

Okay, I decided this post needs to enlighten a lot of people. I have been getting numerous emails on this topic we will be going over today, which I thank those who emailed me. Many people were asking me if keywords were dead or a dying breed. Well, for starters, many people believe that, but personally, I don’t believe it. Here’s why.

semantic search, keywords, forever writing

Source: Cambodia4kids.org Beth Kanter/flickr

Placement vs. Frequency

First things first, keywords are not totally dead and buried. You have to think, Google needs some sort of thing to go off of, right? Well, now let’s do a little knowledge check. Does Google crawl pictures? If you said yes, please read this. If you said no, you are on the right track. Google needs text and text equals to keywords.

Now that we got that out of the way, I want to emphasize that the frequency of your keywords are not as important as the placement of your keywords. For instance, using “SEO writing company” in your title tag of your website and another time in one of your headers, are way more effective than keyword stuffing it a million and one times throughout the body of your website.

A tip to the wise, Google breaks down your site into these sections headers, body, side bars, meta data and last priority. Headers and meta data are high priority areas, which you should place your keywords. These places will help you rank higher in search engines.

It’s all about meaning

Some people think this is a why keywords dying. Well, I do not think so because Google still crawls your site for vital information; however Google no longer is interested in only the keyword(s) or phrases, but it is interested in the meaning behind it. In a way, Google decided to be sophisticated because if you think about it, anyone can write their keywords on their site pretty easily. Nonetheless, when you think about it, if you are serious about the game, you will already have great high-quality content that has a meaning behind it. You won’t have keyword stuffed content that some people who are looking to make an extra buck quickly.

Semantic search is in full swing

Semantic search has been having a major impact on user searches. It seems like Google draws a meaning from the words right on your website, instead of them focusing on the words themselves. Google draws a meaning form what users search with “semantic search.”

To get a better understanding of a semantic search, let’s use a search query for “cheap pizza in Orlando.” If the search engines analyzed the phrase, it would only look for websites that have the words “cheap,” “pizza,” and “Orlando” in them, which can bring up many results from pizza places, stores, and events that feature pizza. While on the other hand, a semantic search clarifies the meaning behind your search query – meaning the user is more than likely looking for a cheap pizza place around Orlando. So, as long as your website content seems like you are a cheap pizza place around Orlando, your website would show up in the search engine results – even if you do not have those exact keywords on your site.

Structure is important

Did you know there are two different ways to look at the SEO structure; however, both these ways can have a major effect on your page authority?

The big picture structure represents the entire structure and navigation of your website. Basically, if your website is very easy for visitors to navigate, your visitors will have a much easier time finding the information they want and need, plus Google will reward you for your time and efforts. That is why you want to title your pages correctly, correctly use your headers and make your website easy to navigate for your visitors; also you will want to make sure your sitemap will allow the search engine to crawl on it.

Also a tip to the wise, interlink your internal content will help you gain more authority, regardless of your keywords.

Now, the small picture structure is concerned more about how each of your website pages is laid out. This is pretty easy if you follow an Googles traditional structure. If you don’t know about the Googles traditional structure, it consists of a body, header, footer, and sidebars. If you place all content in their appropriate places, Google will have an easy time crawling your page, and it will be able to understand the accurate meaning of your website without you having to keyword stuff.

Overall, you can see a glimpse that keywords are not dead. Without keywords or text for that matter, your SEO will never work. Google needs some kind of text to crawl and know what your website is all about.

10 SEO Marketing Tips for Your Small Business

Marketing your small business in today’s technology-driven world is a different game than those who marketed their business 10 years ago. Even two years, it was extremely different, SEO has changed a lot, key marketing techniques came and went with Google Algorithm’s updates. Since the internet is always changing, you will always need a new and improved strategy when it comes to SEO. Luckily for you, you can try these ten tips to help make your strategy that much better.

infographic, forever writing, links, social media, mobile friendly, content

Source: Walter Lim/flickr

Identify your target keywords

As I have said in the past, your SEO foundation will be your target keywords. You will need to base these keywords off your demographic, in-depth analysis of recent and current trends, which can provide you with keywords that have high traffic, with little to no competition.  The key is to create interesting content that keeps your readers’ attention. The better you are keeping the reader’s attention, the longer they will stay and you will increase your chances of them using your services.

Mobile friendly

As some of you know, mobile traffic is rapidly taking over desktop traffic. Of course, that can be scary for those who don’t know how to convert their desktop version of their website to a mobile-friendly website. Luckily for you, most hosting sites now offer a mobile friendly option, or even automatically come with that option.

Keep it simple

Most people have in their minds that simple is not as grand as making it stand out. Well, sometimes when creating content to market your small business, simple is better. You want to keep your content simple, because not everyone will know all the abbreviations, acronyms, about the industry you are in. You should have your content easy to understand, but also informative to those who have a background in your industry.

Market strategy

A marketing strategy is vital for your company. Your marketing strategy allows you to work with your final goal in your sight. Your marketing strategy should include social media, blog posts, targeted audience, and whatever else you will need in order to reach your final goal. However, as you continue on this journey, you may find yourself changing things, adding things, and taking away things. This is a perfectly normal thing to do.

Take advantage of infographics

The last couple of years, infographics are becoming more and more popular. They actually make up a large portion of content that is produced and shared on social media platforms. However, that is not a shocker because infographics are great for presentations, marketing, and catching their reader’s attention. With all this combined, it is a very effective tool to take advantage of.

Prioritize

I watched many small businesses forget about how important it is to prioritize their daily marketing tasks. Yes, all businesses need to learn this from the very beginning. In order to be successful with your marketing plan, you need to manage your time. You need to prioritize your tasks because some tasks may be more vital than others. Granted, all tasks should be done on the day you assign them, but without time management, you will fall behind.

Social media

There are many social media platforms today. There are over hundreds of million users who use these platforms daily. If your company isn’t on them, you are doing it wrong. Many consumers go straight to social media to find reviews, services, and products. This avenue is easy, cheap, and can get your brand out there.

Link building

Link building is important. This does not mean you go off and buy your links because that is illegal and Google can and will penalize you, which I hope you decide not to try your odds. However, the true link building takes time and energy. The more links you have to your site or blog, the higher you will rank. The important thing is to have links on sites that are relevant to your topic.

Relevant content

Your content should always stay relevant to what your business is all about. For some, that can be a very narrow. However, the reasons behind keeping all your content relevant is to help with link building. Yes, relevant content helps out more than you know.

Analytics

Analytics will soon become your best friend. The number analytics provide will not lie, even if you think they are. These numbers will tell you all about your page’s failures and successes. Of course your successes are worth a celebration; however, your failures will allow you to see what you need to do to improve your site. Analytics will give you goals to set, and is a great resource when trying to come up with a brilliant marketing strategy.

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