Tuesday, March 2, 2010

SEO and Online Reputation Management

There are many reasons people use Internet marketing or search engine optimization. One of them includes the improvement of their online reputation.

The term "online reputation management", or ORM, is defined, as the practice of consistent research and analysis of one’s personal or professional, business or industry reputation as represented by the content across all types of online media. It is also sometimes referred to as online reputation monitoring.

Those in marketing know and understand the value of branding and image. Combine this with the influence of consumer's decisions based on the Internet and one can see what businesses are using the Internet to market themselves. For instance research has shown that brands with the highest 'social media activity', including reviews, have seen an increase in revenue by as much as 18%. And today, over 51% of consumers are using the Internet before making a purchase in a shop to educate themselves on a company or product.

Consumers love to gather information. Therefore it is important that when they search for your company or brand name, they find it in the search engines. This is where SEO is tied into reputation management. Search engines do not automatically give credence to one company over another due to assets or value. It's all about who understands how to get online visibility.

So let's say you are Company A and want to improve the name of your company and become more visible on the Internet. What strategy would you take to assist you with your online reputation management? To start you would want to combine a series of marketing, public relations and search engine marketing efforts. Having your website and company name highly visible and in important keyword positions is good for publicity. If you are a company that is highly visible but for all the wrong reasons, such as bad press, it is important to replace this with good press. A good SEO company will help you push out negative reviews in search engines and replace them with positive ones.

What are some strategies an SEO company will take to help your company in addition to monitoring results? First they will help you set up a blog and then provide you with articles with important keywords. The articles can be about anything related to your company or product, the idea is to have them point back to your company website and push its value up on search engines.

Second, you will want to create a social media profile. Using social media is one of the most powerful and yet easy ways to help improve your online reputation. The top four social media sites have high authority in search engines that therefore affects your rankings. What are the big four media sites you should be participating in? They include:

• Facebook
• Twitter
• Linked-In
• MySpace


Once these simple steps have been put into place, the second step is to begin monitoring and participating. Creating an account with social media groups isn't enough; there are rules of engagement. You have to participate in a way that adds credibility to your profile. Participating isn't just about talking about your company and how wonderful it is, but truly engaging others in conversation, making meaningful exchanges and contributions. Doing this requires time and effort that is ongoing.

Last, you will need to monitor your results. You can set up Google and Yahoo alerts which will catch mentions of your company and product name online and let you know who is talking about you and where. You can track everything from the name of your company to key employee names.

You can also monitor, if you are not already, your website statistics. You will want to determine whether your website(s) are showing up with more frequency based on keywords and your namebrand or product names on the search engines. You can monitor everything from your corporate site to product or affiliate sites.

Online reputation management doesn't have to be difficult and yet it is quite effective. With a little work and a little monitoring, you can help your company's reputation move in the direction you choose along with improving its visibility.

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.





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Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Magic Of HubPages and Generating Traffic

Generating traffic to your site means more sales, more income and more points toward your search engine results. This in turn means even more traffic, more sales, income and so on.

So how do you generate more traffic to your site? Of course there are many ways and one of them is through the creation of a HubPage.

A HubPage is an all-inclusive page that informs the reader about a subject. So to create your HubPage you will need to pick a topic. Let's say your topic is plumbing. You may want to focus in on one aspect of plumbing, say for instance, how to change out a faucet.

Before writing your article, you may want to have a list of at least three keywords that you will use throughout your article. Your article should be between 1000 to 1500 words long. You want to look for a keyword density of around 2%. There are websites and software that will help you evaluate your keyword density within your text that basically takes the total words and divides it by the number of times your keyword is represented. Make sure one of those keywords is in your title. Creating a title that is enticing and has a keyword can take some thought.

Now to write an interesting article without it appearing as if you are stuffing it with keywords. Keep your article's content interesting and unique. Second, if you want people to read your article, write about a topic that maybe nobody else has thought to write about. Give your reader something worth their time to read. Also, for formatting purposes, place plenty of paragraphs in your text making it easier to read. Include bullet points if possible or lists as they are also easier for your reader to view.

After you have written your article you will now want to insert photos or images. Include at least 3 images, preferably 5 images. Don't forget that they must be royalty free in order to include them on your HubPage. There are hundreds of sites that offer stock images that you can either purchase or pick up for free. Images make your page more attractive to read and search engines see images as additional data to the text you've written and add value to the overall way a search engine reads, ranks and lists. Hide keywords within your image by renaming and tagging images before uploading them to your page. If your keyword is 'faucet repair', name your image faucet_repair.jpg or something similar. Also give your images alt tags. Search engines look for keywords both on the page and off the page, so take the opportunity to utilize everything you put together in a meaningful way.

Next, include a video. Search Engines rate videos highly and if your HubPage links to video's that are already on the search engine listings, it will give your HubPage a better ranking. Try and include at least one video, and a maximum of three. (Use YouTube or Google for the best results). There are millions of videos you can find on YouTube that will match up with what it is you are trying to educate your public about. Use an image from the video along with a link to the video within your hub page. Again, this is a good opportunity to include valuable keywords.


Now link everything up. Link at least three of your keywords to related resources. You will also have links from your images and video that go to related resources. You can link to sources such as articles, forums, or websites.

Last, many people prefer to write a 150 word summary description of their hub page. Include in this summary your main keywords as this will appear next to your hub page listing on the search engines. Now your page is ready to publish your hub page and bring in the traffic!

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.



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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Relationship Based Marketing

If you have been in sales or marketing for a while you probably have heard of the term "Relationship Based Marketing".

This type of marketing differs from other forms of marketing in that it recognizes the long term value to the firm of keeping customers, as opposed to direct or "Intrusion" marketing, which focuses upon acquisition of new clients by targeting majority demographics based upon prospective client lists.

Relationship marketing also relies upon acquiring the knowledge of what the consumer needs solely through existing customers in a mutual exchange. Relationship marketing is also dependent upon viral marketing for the acquisition of new customers. But as we have seen in very successful campaigns, viral marketing can have extensive effects.

What is viral marketing? Viral marketing refers to marketing techniques that use pre-existing social networks to produce increases in brand awareness or to achieve other marketing objectives (such as product sales) through self-replicating viral processes, analogous to the spread of pathological and computer viruses. It can be word-of-mouth delivered or enhanced by the network effects of the Internet.

So how are people using the Internet to utilize viral marketing - in many ways.

Web 2.0 and Social Media



According to Wikipedia, which is a perfect example of Web 2.0, the term Web 2.0 is defined as "commonly associated with web applications that facilitate interactive information sharing, interoperability, user-centered design, and collaboration on the World Wide Web. Examples of Web 2.0 include web-based communities, hosted services, web applications, social-networking sites, video-sharing sites, wikis, blogs, mashups, and folksonomies."


Web 2.0 gives more tools to those who utilize relationship-based marketing to promote their product or service. With Web 2.0 you are not only reaching a large base of people but you are also giving more marketing power to your website through the spider web of connections behind each of these types of media. If you are promoting yourself through Wikipedia, you are getting a two-fold force of marketing, one, directly to your potential client and two, promoting your website's viability due to Wikipedia's highly spidered site.


Blogging



Blogging has probably been around longer than the other types of relationship based marketing techniques. What better way to promote yourself and your product then to sit down with a one-on-one conversation with potential clients? With your blog you can share your interests or passions with others who will then share that information and thus you have viral marketing.


If the idea of creating a blog scares you, this too has been made easier. Not only is there software out there making it easier and easier to blog but there are also people who you can hire to write blogs for you.



Comment on Existing Blogs



Once you write your blog, it does your blog well to have people comment on it. This has to do with the way search engines work as well as plain ole viral marketing. To bring in more people to read your blog and comment, become a frequent visitor to sites that are related to your professional expertise and you may find yourself becoming the go-to person for those in need of that expertise.



Facebook and Other Social media


It is quite possible you have heard or even used Facebook by now. And if you haven't used Twitter, certainly you have heard the term. These along with MySpace, and LinkedIn are common forms of social media. Sites like Facebook and MySpace have a broad focus while LinkedIn is more business focused. Sites like Facebook, provide the opportunity to add a customized page you can use to promote a business.


Relationship based marketing takes time and patience but is possibly one of the most viable and reliable forms of getting your name and company out to the public with the greatest long term value.

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.






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At February 21, 2010 1:02 PM ,
Blogger Chiropractic Marketing said...

An efficient, targeted,viable and effective strategy to promote any business service and or products is online marketing. This is the marketing system which could beat any market.

chiropractic internet marketing

 

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Understanding Analytics Terminology

If you are new to the business of owning and operating a website then the understanding of analytics and search engine optimization may at first seem overwhelming.

But like anything, it first requires a grasp of the terminology. Knowing the terminology, you will have a better understanding of what types of website goals you are shooting for.

Maybe you are now saying, my goal is just to sell more products or services. True enough. But to sell more products or services, one must understand who their customer is along with whether you are reaching that customer and if you are holding that customer's attention long enough to make a sell. To do this, one must understand the interaction between customers and your website and this is done through Website Analytics.

Website analytics requires analyzing data on the back end of your website. A marketing specialist or search engine optimizer is going to look at these figures to help create and modify a marketing plan for you. So what types of things is this specialist looking at?

1. Unique Visitors - We all want to know if people are finding our website and if so, how many. This number can be tricky to determine. In the old days, people installed 'hit counters" which gave the owner some obscure number regarding the number of times a person opened their website. The problem with hit counters is that they do not accurately count the true number of people who visit the site. Why is this? Hit counters are typically not sophisticated enough to separate a visitor from the data that comes up on your site - therefore, counters will show more hits than there truly are. This sounds complicated but this is how it works. For instance, if you gave a gallery page on your site and it shows twenty thumbnail pictures, each picture that loads is counted as a hit. Text on the page, other images, external stylesheets, external javascripts, links and other elements that require the server to pull a file to build the page register will count as a hit. One visitor may end up appearing as up to 100 hits.

I have seen many people base their unique visitor count primarily on the free hits counter that their hosting company provided or free software they downloaded, which leads them to believe they were receiving great traffic. After looking at their Google Analytics unique visitor count, the number was quite different and extremely low in most situations, which was highly disappointing to the new website owner.

A web analyst not only looks at the true number of visitors that visit your website but they also look at how many of those are Return Visitors in contrast to how many are Unique Visitors. Both are important numbers. Return Visitors can indicate a strong interest in your site and a likeliness of an action being made by that visitor such as a purchase. Unique visitors are valuable as well as it shows how many new people you are attracting.

2. Page Views - This term describes how many different pages a visitor looked at while on your website. The question an analyst is asking is, did this person just look at your front page and leave or did they browse around, click on your links, or read about your product or service. For marketing purposes, it is important to make sure potential clients are spending time on your website and finding everything they need. If they are not and leaving right after finding your website or what is called 'bouncing' out, you will want to analyze the reasons why. Did the person not find that they were searching for, was your website too obscure and difficult to maneuver, or are you even targeting the right audience? All of these are questions to be asked if your Page View statistics remain low.

3. Referrers - Discovering how people found you is also valuable. Did your visitor come from a website that linked to your website or did they find you through a search engine? Which search engine did they use? Which websites are linking to you that is providing you with traffic? Did your visitors find you through social media such as Twitter, Facebook or a blog? These answers can show how well your website represented in the web world and on a global basis?

4. Search Terms - Once an analyst determines how people are finding your website and you discover it may primarily be through search engines, the next logical question is, what words or phrases did that person type into the search engine. A search term or search string can show you if the terms people are using are correct for what your website represents - for example, if you have a large number of unique visitors, a small number of page views and people bouncing off the minute they find your site, you may wonder why? If you are a company for instance that sells model airplanes and your unique visitors are typing in the word 'model' in search of models or even 'airplanes', not using the two words together, they connotation is completely different and you may not be finding your correct audience.

5. Entry and Exit Pages - Another piece of information a web analyst studies is which pages on your website are visitors entering through and exiting? Did you pull your guest in, guide them through everything you wanted them to see or did you lose them right away or consistently on a particular page? Understanding which pages your visitors are looking at can help you identify the high interest pages to the low interest pages of your website.

While these are just a handful of terms used by a website analyst, it may help the new and even seasoned website owner understand how to improve their online rankings.

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.





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Monday, August 31, 2009

Are keywords still valuable for optimization?

For those unfamiliar with the term SEO or search engine optimization and how it works and how the term 'keywords' come into play, here is your synopsis.


To start, we will only refer to Google as it is the most commonly used search engine. So, let's say you have a business and of course you want people to find you - right? Of course you do. So what has to happen, you may ask. To start, you have to get into the mind of the person who will be searching for you. So, let's say for example you sell vacuums. What will your potential buyer type into the search engine to find you? Will they type 'vacuums' or will they type in 'vacuums for sale' or even 'cheap vacuums'? The terms people use are what we call keywords.

Now Google, who wants to provide the best webpage for your search term has to follow a particular criterion to help you get your match. Google uses a software element that is called a 'spider' which scans websites and their text looking for the keywords within your site that match the user's search terms. Google will they show a results page that is made up of two elements - sponsored links and organic results. The sponsored links are paid for and are on the right-hand side. The organic results are in the left-hand column or what appears to be up the middle. Organic results are the free listings and the listings people strive to get on the first page for.

So how do you get on the front page of Google without having to pay? One of the many ways is by writing and optimizing text. This text not only has to be of value to its reader but include the keyword(s) you think your potential customer will be using. Your first thought might be to shove a lot of these keywords into your text. Don't do this - it has been tried and while it worked for a short time it is now called keyword stuffing. Not only will this now turn your potential customer away but it could also get you booted off of Google for some time.

So how many times can one keyword be used on a page without a site getting penalized? Many SEO experts feel 9 to 15% is a nice ratio. To evaluate the number of keywords in your text, there is a formula, or one can simply use free software available online to evaluate their keyword density in contrast to the number of words in the text.

Hiring professional writers who can integrate keywords naturally into your text is key. You don't want your pages to appear like spam and yet you do want it to meet Google's algorithms. Understanding how Google searches pages in not truly known by anybody as it is kept somewhat under wraps, but through experience, SEO experts can tell you the software is able to observe general relevancy in addition to the keywords.

The second element to all of this is that the value of keyword density will hardly ever come from your main content, but rather from the optimization of all the other factors on your page. Keywords are not only taken into consideration from your main text, there are other elements Google's spiders scan, they include:

• Page title
• Meta Tags
• Meta Description
• Images Description
• Headers Tags

The last important element regarding keywords is knowing which ones to use. Are people typing in 'vacuum' or 'vacuum(s)'? SEO professionals use a number of tools to find these keywords for their client's use. A word plural or not plural can make a difference by the tens of thousands of searches, at times.

Search engine optimization is always changing and evolving, but one thing that has remained most consistent is the continued value and use of keywords. Are they still valuable for optimization? You bet ya!

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.




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Saturday, August 1, 2009

What Is Viral Marketing and How Does It Work

Viral marketing, either you have heard of the term or you haven't. If you haven't, it is most likely that you'll question the term viral, as it seems dangerous. But for those who understand how it works, viral is good.

The formal definition of viral marketing is to promote information or products that other customers are compelled to give to other friends, colleagues and family. Viral marketing is also a way to promote a service or product exponentially, that is, a handful of people tell another handful of friends and the information spreads, kind of like a virus.

The beauty of viral marketing is that at times, you may not even see how it is spreading, it could be living in secrecy and then show itself suddenly in huge numbers. The 'virus', can piggybacks on other hosts and uses its resources to multiply itself. Add to that the right environment, and it will grow exponentially.

So how what are some elements of viral marketing and using it in a strategic way? According to professionals, an effective viral marketing strategy includes:

1. Giving away products or services - The term free still holds power, even after all of its use. Most viral marketing strategies give away some type of product or service.

2. Transferring Your Virus To Others - For viruses to transfer, they require human contact. And, they have to be easy to transmit. When looking at your marketing plan and strategy for your viral marketing, choose a medium that carries your marketing message easily and is easy to transfer. For example, Twitter has become a popular medium and platform for quickly transferring information. With Twitter, over 3 million messages are posted everyday.

Other ways Twitter has become useful in marketing is that it provides a venue for you to post news or updates about your company or products. You can post promotions, sales, or specials. With Twitter you can also give your brand a voice and a personality.

Another way to transfer information is through a news release announcing what you are giving away, or if you are hosting a contest, or even providing a free service. If your news release is carried by just 5% of the media you send it to, you could have not only have your URL in front of tens of thousands of readers quite inexpensively, you are transferring information at exponential speed.

3. Utilizing common motivations - Humans have a variety of things that motivate them. Marketing is about plugging into those motivations and working with them. Some of the basic motivators include the need to be popular, loved and understood. Discovering something that is free, cool or makes one feel unique, drives people to grab on to it, tell others and share 'inside information'.

4. Take advantage of others' resources - Blogs, forums, social networks, podcasts, RSS feeds, text messaging - they’re all capable of instantaneously distributing information across any and all borders and time-zones. They also allow you to reach people in a more targeted and personal way than ever before. Creating a timely and non-disruptive communication with your niche audience is the key to a successful email campaign. With the Internet, today’s shift in social media is bringing forth a whole new breed of brand influencers. Your job is to convince them on your brand’s attributes. The viral nature of the Internet can help you give your messages better reach than any traditional media ever could.

5. Encourage Word-of-Mouth Recommendations - Word-of-mouth (on the Web it's "word-of-mouse") is considered the very best advertising, because it is unsolicited. Here are some ways to encourage friends to share with friends, and use their network to promote your site.

Install a Recommend-It.com referral system. Recommend-It won't save a dismal site, but it will help your visitors promote your site to their network of friends.

Make it easy to e-mail or fax your webpage to a friend. Encourage readers to e-mail your webpage to a friend. This is similar to recommending your site, but allows your visitor to send specific content as well. This is easier to accomplish without a database-driven site.

Encourage people to forward your newsletter to friends. Do this at the end of a newsletter, and you may jog some readers to do it immediately. It's easy to do.


Viral marketing doesn't have to be complicated nor expensive. It often requires some great forethought and planning, along with follow through and patience. The results may not be immediate but the effect great.





Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.

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At August 2, 2009 9:13 PM ,
Anonymous Website Traffic said...

Nice Post...

Thanks for sharing..

 

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Your Corporate Blog and Ten Rules To Follow

Having a corporate blog is almost a must these days. According to Jupiter Research, in 2006, statistics showed that 34% of large corporate companies had established weblogs. Another 35% planned to do so by the end of 2006, thus bringing the total to nearly 70%.


Having a corporate blog is almost a must these days. According to Jupiter Research, in 2006, statistics showed that 34% of large corporate companies had established weblogs. Another 35% planned to do so by the end of 2006, thus bringing the total to nearly 70%.

So what is a corporate blog? Corporate blogs can be internal or external. An internal blog, which is typically used through the corporations Intranet for employees, is a way to help employees participate in ideas, discuss issues, stimulate communication throughout the company’s divisions and is meant to create a feel of community within the corporation.

The external blog is available for anybody to read and often reflects the company’s values and its spokespersons views. The blog can be a way to announce new products and services (or the end of old products), to explain and clarify policies, or to react on public criticism on certain issues. It also allows a window to the company culture and is often treated more informally than traditional press releases, though a corporate blog often tries to accomplish similar goals as press releases do. In some corporate blogs, all posts go through a review before they're posted. Some corporate blogs, but not all, allow comments to be made to the posts.

With that said, what are some basic rules about creating and maintaining corporate blogs? Here are the top ten:

1. Don’t Use Your Blog Primarily For Marketing – People won’t want to read your blog if it is just a bunch of advertising and marketing. A blog should reveal the real meat of your company, an insider view. The more personal you can make your corporate blog the better. As with all blogs, there should be a level of personality, sincerity and sense of respect for the community that is best kept real.

2. Have The Backing of The CEO – Blogging can reveal a lot of information, therefore you want to make sure your CEO is behind it all the way. Before starting your corporate blog, make sure you have explained to the CEO the benefits and risks. You may also want to check with your legal department on what can and can’t be said. Know your parameters.

3. Who Will Write The Blog – This is important and it depends on if the blog is internal or external. Because each blog serves its own purpose, you want the right people for the job. This may require training for those you choose. You may choose numerous people who you feel represent your company well, but these people also need to be trained in how to write blogs, how to convey their message, how to inspire others and more. Your bloggers should understand how blogs work, what blog etiquette is or how to deal with blog basics. There is also the concern of your bloggers dealing with intellectual property rights and information leaks. But don’t be afraid, a little training will go a long way.

4. Keep It Authentic – As mentioned before, the blog is not another source for marketing and advertising. You want to connect with your readers in a real way. This isn’t to say your blogs shouldn’t be in alignment with your company’s brand, mission and objectives, this is important too. But allow room for the bloggers true voice to come through.

5. Assign Subjects - Assign a person to oversee all blogs, somebody who has an overall knowledge of company policies and public relations. Assign bloggers according to the expertise in their field. These writers should then have to submit their work to the one person who oversees all of the blogs for review before posting. This checks and balance system will save your company a lot of headaches, just in case a blogger gets carried away and says something that could harm the company. Work with each blogger to develop an editorial calendar that keeps him or her on track and aligns with company events, releases, industry happenings, etc.

6. Throw It Out There - Don’t hide from the tough stuff. Be willing to admit mistakes.
The blogosphere expects that when a company joins the blogosphere, they should be honest about shortcomings, failings and issues. Members of the blogosphere are also willing to forgive companies when they admit their mistakes.

7. Use Your Blog For Company Crisis – Every company has times when they receive a big black mark due to some error or PR disaster. You can use your blog to help your company work through this. Create a plan ahead of time regarding how your blog will address such potential company issues.

8. Moderate blog comments. – People like to comment on blogs and some take their aggressions out on the blog due to its anonymity. This is why it is important to moderate comments continually.

9. Use Your Internal Blog To Improve Communications – If you find your corporation doesn’t communicate well across departments, a blog can assist you in bridging this divide. When you place a representative from departments in a position of blogging for their department, information gets shared and can help the company see the bigger picture.

10. Create Objectives – Your blog should have some sort of device for measuring its effectiveness before starting it. Design criteria that you will want as a measuring device, this criteria can include: Positive media mentions, Traffic to the blog, Incoming links to the blog, Increases in brand awareness, Increased attendance at company events.

Having a corporate blog doesn’t have to be complicated and scary, especially if you apply some of the basic rules ahead of time. In the end, you might find it an easy way to help your company.



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Monday, April 20, 2009

Increase Traffic To Your Blog, Increase Rankings

There are millions of blogs online these days and with those blogs are people finding ways to improve their website’s search engine rankings. Yes, blogs have more than one purpose.

Sure they are informative and have lots of fresh content, but they also link back to corporate or business websites, which in turn helps those websites move up the search engine rankings scale.

So why are blogs so successful in increasing your website’s rankings? To start, blogs have no specific special powers of high rankings on their very own. What they do have potentially is fresh, unique content. Most search engines tend to like this, regardless of the format. If the search engines know any given site is adding new articles on a frequent basis, they will come around often to index it and indexing in turn means better ratings.

This leads us to making sure your site’s content is fresh and how to draw people to that content. Good content is probably the best thing you can do to draw attention to your blog and maintain a following. To do this, try covering topics that nobody else is talking about. By writing about niche subjects, you can grab traffic that is looking for what you have to say. Second, spend the time and effort to research and write about your subject, don’t just repeat what everybody else is talking about.

Another strategy in creating a successful blog includes the writing of quality title tags with two audiences in mind. First and foremost, you're writing a title tag for the people who will visit your site or have a subscription to your feed. You also want to think about search engines when you title your posts, since the engines can help to drive traffic to your blog. Once you have finished your title tags, now you will want to make sure all of your entries are tagged. Technorati is the first place that you should be tagging posts. Tagging content can also be valuable to help give you a "bump" towards getting traffic from big sites like Reddit, Digg & StumbleUpon.

Tagging posts is one method if getting your content out in front of your potential audience, another way is through Twitter. Although Twitter is a social media tool meant to create community and relationships, it does have an SEO value. For example, Twitter can affect positively your Alexa rankings by sending visitors to your pages. Usage data is a sign of quality for Google and all the other search engines. If you can make people come to your site via Twitter, then this is an SEO advantage you cannot afford to miss. When using Twitter, don’t worry about shortening your URL’s, the link will still have value. These TinyURLs are dynamically created URLs that redirect users to the real URL via 301 (permanent redirect). Search engines do not index TinyURLs, but index and pass PageRank to the actual URLs instead.

While we are talking about the backend, make sure you are pinging your articles each time you write them. An easy way for search engines to quickly find your new content is through the process of pinging. Using a tool like Pingomatic is very helpful in this process. Pinging seems to help get blog posts spidered and indexed very quickly.

Last, add social book marking links to the end of each blog entry. This helps your reader pick your article and add it to their favorite book marking software and simultaneously promotes your site. Having your blog’s articles submitted to book marking sites such as Delicious helps you also build links back to your blog. Backlinks are important because each time someone links to your site it counts sort of as a “vote” for it, moving it higher up in the search engine results pages.

These are just a few ways your blog can grow and along with it your website’s rankings. With a little time and some patience, before long your site will surely make its way to the top.

Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.



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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Value of a Well Written Page Title

Sometimes it is the little things that make the biggest impression. This could be said for page titles.
A page title is the code behind your individual website’s pages that helps search engines identify it.

Do individual’s see page titles or just programmers? The answer is both. If you type in a website’s address such as www.arteworks.com you will notice in the tab is an identifier, this particular website’s reads “Search Engine Optimization Company SEO Companies | ArteWorks SEO Austin”. This is helpful for people who open many tabs or bookmark.

On the backend of your website, within the code, your title tag will be enclosed with brackets and labeled title.

Because page titles are seen by both your audience and search engines, lets look at the benefits of both.

Audience

1. One of the best ways to attract repeat visits is to have someone bookmark your web page and because page titles are the default label for your browser bookmarks, it makes it easier for your reader to find you again. If your page title is not descriptive or missing, most people will not remember why they bookmarked your site in the first place.
2. Page titles are stored in browser history lists. Similar to bookmarks, browsers by default use page titles to label pages in the browser’s history. If your audience wanted to find your page again in their History, they would not find it easily if your page has a non-descriptive title.
3. Page titles show up in some search engines as descriptors of your website. If you want someone to click on your website among the millions of other choices they have then you must write a very informative and concise title. Many people start with the name of their business followed by a descriptor, others start with keywords followed by a call to action. People should know instantly what they will be clicking to the moment they choose your site, therefore don’t stuff your title with keywords and unnecessary information. Be honest with your reader while seducing them into your site.

Search Engines

1. Naturally, search engines rank pages with relevant titles higher than web pages without relevant titles. The basic idea is that you are helping the search engine understand your web page through the page title.
2. Unique titles to match each of your website’s pages helps search engines clarify who and what you are. To understand this, let’s look at how the search engine works. Spiders crawl the web and grab as much content (including links) from every web site they can find. This process is infinite and the spider just keeps sending content back to the search engine servers for processing. The algorithm then sorts through all the content that is sent by the spider and has to determine what is on each page, what the content is about, and how relevant that page is to each search that is conducted at the search engine. The task is then to make this process as simple as possible, by helping the algorithm see the differences between each page. When the spider reads your descriptions and titles and finds that they’re the same, it is too difficult for it differentiate amongst your pages, and is less likely to return that page in the search results. So you need to be able to show the spiders that each page is unique, not only with unique content, but by also adding unique page descriptions and titles.
3. RSS generators and content management systems use page titles to create headlines; again this is important for search engines to recognize.
4. Almost half of all the badly ranking sites found in many of the major search engines do not specifically identify the homepage in the page title. Most websites simply included the company name in the title, making it impossible for a user to know exactly what particular webpage a bookmark or search result relates to.

Writing a quality title page for each individual page on your website may seem like a lot of work but when you evaluate the pros and cons, you will discover it is certainly worth the time.

About the Author: Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.



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Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Blogger's Checklist

If you are a new blogger or even an experienced one, it is important to check in with how your blog is doing and maintain it in a way that successful bloggers do. So what is it successful bloggers do? Here is your blogger checklist, which consists of eight items for you to consider.


If you are a new blogger or even an experienced one, it is important to check in with how your blog is doing and maintain it in a way that successful bloggers do. So what is it successful bloggers do? Here is your blogger checklist, which consists of eight items for you to consider.

1. Proofread Your Work - Misspellings and wrong use of words in a blog entry can turn a reader off in a real hurry. Make sure you type your original blog message in a program that contains spell check and then reread your work for errors. You can then copy and paste your work into your blog.

2. Publish Posts on a Regular Basis - If you want to maintain a following of readers and prove you are serious about your blog you have to keep your content fresh and updated. You may not have time to blog daily so the important thing is to just be consistent. Commit to how often you will make an entry, it may be weekly, biweekly or monthly. When you are consistent, your guests will know when to check back in with you.

3. Backup Your Blog - There is nothing worse than losing all of your work, especially if your blog contains numerous entries. Create an automatic backup system for your blog. Most blogging software companies have a Help file to assist you in understanding how to back your blog up or what processes are needed.

4. Link to Older Posts - If you have been blogging for a while, it is most likely that many of your topics will overlap, so why not provide your reader with reference to some of your older entries. This can be done with a link. When you do this, you are building an effective linking strategy and encouraging readers to stay on your blog longer. As we all know, a quality linking strategy can mean an increase your traffic and search engine rankings.

5. Answer Guests Comments - Take the time to answer anyone who makes a comment on your blog. Doing this will create loyalty among your followers and will help build community. If there comes a day when your blog is extremely popular, it is still important to maintain correspondence with your readers. Also, be kind and considerate when responding to your readers. A topic that may be obvious to you may not be to your reader and there is no need to make somebody feel bad.

6. Approve Comments - If you use comment moderation (and you should unless you get very low volumes of spam) you should approve pending comments on a regular basis. Having meaningful comments on your blog is important, so check pending comments regularly to make sure they are getting posted.

7. Remember Your Audience When Creating Topics – If you have a new blog, one of most overlooked items is being able to accurately define the audience that you will be writing to. As time goes by, you’ll learn what types of content your readers appreciate or don’t appreciate in that you will have little response. Sometimes creating a niche that very few people write about or understand is a great way to get your blog going and you will know exactly who your audience is.

8. Check for Dead Links – There is nothing more annoying than clicking on a dead link. If you’re like most bloggers you probably include a lot of links in your posts, both inbound and outbound. Those links may have worked at the time the post was published, but do you know if they still work? Dead links are especially common with outbound links. The blogs and websites you link to may shut down, changes their link structure, or remove a page, all of which will result in dead links. So make a date on a regular basis to check all outbound links on your blog.

Follow these eight simple rules and your blog’s maintenance will continue to grow successful.




About the Author: Pamela Ravenwood is a copywriter for ArteWorks SEO. She is an award winning writer, journalist, SEO specialist and strategic planning consultant. To learn more about this search engine optimization company, visit www.arteworks.biz.




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