Sometimes small business owners are doing everything they can just to have a web presence. They figure that if they can just get a website out there, that should be enough. Then they hear about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and figure they will never be found in a world full of businesses that are already doing SEO and trying to target the same keywords they would.
What small business owners don’t always know is that there is a great thing called local SEO. When someone searches in a local area local businesses should be returned in the results. Google will even display a map with listings in some cases pointing potential customers right too you. What great news, right?
To get shown in the local results the way you would like, you need to be consistent. All of your listings that are found online should be claimed and the NAP+W information (or Name, Address, Phone and Website Information) needs to exactly match your website. You need to be setup with Google tools and have Google My Business setup and verified on Google. Social media profiles are always a huge plus, especially when they list your NAP+W information as well. Not to mention social media profiles show up in search results too! Not sure if you have noticed but YouTube and even Pinterest results show up many times on page one in a search.
Websites to Impress, Inc incorporates local SEO into our SEO plans. It can bring huge results for local businesses that offer products and services to a local service area. We have an SEO plan that is surely right for you. If you visit our SEO page on our website, we provide a free SEO audit of your business and your website to let you know what we recommend. Our SEO packages differ from other digital marketing companies because we don’t force you to sign a contract. We believe in our SEO skills so much, that be believe you will want to stay with us once you start, because we can show you results and return on investment – AKA – LEADS!
Call today to get your free SEO Audit. See if local SEO is right for your business. Don’t let SEO intimidate you. Get a team behind you that can show it who is boss – YOU!
Read More: Why Local SEO is More Important than Ever
If you are a business owner, you understand that you need an online presence in order to thrive as a company or service provider. Now-a-days, almost 90% of people looking for a service will search online before they do anything else.
Research also shows that 75% of online users do not click past the first page of results when searching for a service or product. Eek! So the question is, how do you get your website to show up so people will see it?
Even if you have an efficient and well-designed website, you may not be benefiting from it if you are not properly utilizing SEO (Search Engine Optimization). In order to increase your traffic, you need to increase your rankings. SEO is a Search Engine Marketing tool that will help you do just that.
1. Organic Search Results are the number one way people get to your site. A lot of people tend to scroll past advertisements and get to organic search results – which are results generated by SEO. Why is this? Perhaps it is because they are looking for a company that made its way to the top with a good reputation and optimized content rather than just by paying for an ad.
Here’s an interesting statistic for you: It is 300% more likely that someone will reach your site through an organic search result than through social media. Inbound SEO leads also have an extremely higher close rate than outbound leads such as direct mail and print advertising. This just goes to show that as important as social media and other forms of advertising are, SEO is that much more essential.
2. First Impressions Are Everything. When your company shows up in search results, the first thing that your potential clients see is your title tag and meta description. Many businesses don’t pay any attention to their title tags and meta descriptions, but these are the things that are going to determine whether a potential client clicks on your site or not. SEO focuses on optimizing things like title tags, meta descriptions, and keywords so that your first impression will be a good one. Better yet, once potential clients reach your site, they will be able to easily navigate it with the helpful links and optimized content that SEO provides.
3. Investments Give Back. When you pay for SEO services, you are not just paying for an advertisement that gets you to the top of Google. Once you stop paying for ads, you stop showing up in search results. With SEO, this is not the case. You are making a long term investment for your company. The more optimizing that you do, the higher you will rank. The higher you rank, the more clicks you will get, which leads to higher conversion rates and a greater return on your investment.
At Websites To Impress, we have a dedicated team of content writers and technical analysts that are focused on using the latest SEO techniques to increase the business of our clients. We work hard to devise a specific SEO strategy for your business, so that you can thrive in your industry. We are passionate about customer service and want to collaborate with you to increase the rankings of your business.To learn more about our SEO services, give us a call today.
Most people have used the Internet to either buy something or to learn more about a product or service before making a purchase. According to Retailing Today, 81% of shoppers do some type of online research when thinking about making a purchase.
A majority of shoppers (60%) use search engines when beginning their research. This means it is important that your website is well placed on search engine result pages (SERP).
What do they do once they find your site? Here are the top four actions that customers perform online:
Once they get this data, they begin to form an opinion on whether or not they are going to buy the product or service.
To be useful to potential customers, your website should have all the information they will need to make an informed purchase. Once they choose a website to look at, there are a few things that the average shopper looks for. In a study by Econsultancy, 61% of shoppers look at reviews provided by other customers before making their purchase. They may also look for warranty information, prices, or information on specific models. They may also look to see if there are any sales or discounts being offered, along with payment and shipping information. If any of these topics are applicable to your product or service, make sure you provide the needed information.
Speaking of information, it is vital that your shoppers receive the correct data. If the information they receive online is incorrect or misleading, customers will lose trust in your company. Nothing is more frustrating than showing up at a store, only to find the hours online were wrong or, when a purchase arrives, it is not what they expected. An unhappy customer is usually not a returning customer. A dissatisfied customer will tell 10-15 people about what they experienced and, if they post it on social media, that number grows exponentially.
So, what stops people from buying from you online?
(Side note: I once bought a very necessary part for my car online. They only offered delivery through the U.S. Postal Service, even though I offered to pay for overnight shipping. No dice. I had to wait a week for it to arrive while my car sat on a lift at the local mechanic. Needless to say, I won’t be using them again for car parts.)
If a potential customer is going to be doing research online, you need to get them to buy from you. The first thing you should do is make sure that you have SEO working for you. The SEO specialists at Websites to Impress can help you with that, as it is a big undertaking. You need to get your website to the top of the search results, as users are most likely to start at the top of the page and work their way down the list. We’ll analyze your market and target audience and identify the keywords that your customers are using. Those keywords will be used in your product titles and descriptions and your published content will be optimized. You should make sure to take advantage of your social media accounts to amplify your message, also.
Customers come to your site to learn about your products or services, so make sure they get the information they are looking for. Make sure that you have clear and informative product descriptions. The information should be appropriate to your audience: are they trained people with industry knowledge or are they laypeople with limited prior knowledge? Reviews and testimonials are indispensable and you can reward people for providing user reviews. In addition, use clear, quality photographs that are detailed, so the shopper can see what they need to make a decision. It’s also a good idea to have videos available, either on your site or through links to YouTube or Vimeo channels. According to Ascend2, a staggering 87% of businesses report that video increased their marketing effectiveness.
Make sure that your website looks credible and professional. Most people will be hesitant giving their business to a company that has a website that looks like it was thrown together earlier that day or worse, 10 years ago. You take a lot of pride in your brick and mortar store, so make sure your website reflects that pride in ownership. Make sure that your contact information is readily available and you offer excellent support service. A well-handled problem can turn a dissatisfied customer into a return customer. Protect your client’s financial information by providing online security and posting the certificate, so they know that you are a reliable and responsible business.
Websites to Impress is a great resource to help your website generate sales, whether you sell a product or a service. Contact us today to learn how we can optimize your site and help your company become more successful.
Just like when you are trying to get a healthy body, one of the secrets to having a healthy SEO ranking is going organic. The hardest part of this is changing all the previous SEO work that was done in the past. The rules have changed a lot and they did so quickly. In the past, it didn’t matter if your website was easy to use, just as long as it was packed with keywords.
Now it is much more important that a website gives the user what they need. By giving your customer what they are looking for, you will be helping your site move up in the Google rankings. Google is trying to give the end users a positive experience. It doesn’t matter how happy they make advertisers and business owners if no one uses their search engine.
Potential and returning customers should find your site educational and useful. You should be considered The #1 Source for whatever information they are looking for. Content should be informative and blogs should be helpful.
With the explosive growth of smartphones and tablets, Google has tried to make the desktop experience look similar to the mobile one. They have done this by putting more paid search ads at the top and pushing the organic results down the page. Depending on the intent of the user, these paid ads may provide a better experience, giving the user the information that they are looking for. For example, if you are looking to buy a computer, you aren’t going to want to go to a site that teaches you how to build one, you’re going to want a site where you can shop for a computer and possibly buy one.
If you have a brick and mortar store, it’s very important that you get listed in the local results. People that are using their phone to do research are probably out and about and looking for something near them. Searches that end in “…near me” are increasing, so it’s essential that you have your local information set up in the code of your website. People are probably not going to take the time to scroll past the top listings if they are on the move and looking for someone that offers what they are looking for.
By pushing the purely organic results farther down the page, those sites will have fewer click-throughs, so you have to make every visitor count. It is more important than ever that you plan a strategy that integrates paid advertising and organic SEO. Your website needs to appear where your customers can find it easily. You need to make sure your customers can find you when they do a search and, once they get there, they stay on your website. If you are doing pay-per-click, you want to make sure those clicks translate into sales, so the customer needs to be driven to making a purchase or contacting your company.
The behavior of searchers has changed now that more of them are using mobile devices to do their research. Google calls the new driving forces behind potential purchases “micro-moments” . They list them as “want-to-know. want-to-go, want-to-do, and want-to-buy” moments. People are looking for instant answers to their queries and if they can’t find it quickly on your site, they are going to move on. Smartphones and the Internet have given consumers high expectations; in the words of the immortal Freddie Mercury, they “want it all and [they] want it now”. Recent studies show that over 80% of shoppers do online research before making a purchase. Not only does your site have to have the information they are looking for, it has to be readable on a variety of devices, also known as being responsive.
Having a website that quickly and efficiently solves a user’s problem or answers their question is the key to driving traffic through your website. Make sure your website is essential in helping a potential customer with their situation, whether it is just finding your address or store hours or letting them know that they need to hire your company. The whole reason you have a website is to increase business, so make sure your site is doing its part.
When you work with Websites to Impress, our team of SEO specialists will make sure your site is set up for all the changes that are occurring with Google’s search results. Give us a call today and see how you can get the most out of your website.
Google made an annoucement this week that was not noticed by most, but it definitely is a big deal. For Google’s algorithms, it is pretty much a game changer. Rankbrain – or Google’s new “AI” machine learning update – will now be changing the way that search results are shown. Machine learning has been on the way for a long time, and Rankbrain is this technology being put to work.
As SEO specialists at WTI, we are always wary of changes to the way that Google displays search results and Rankbrain is no different. We knew we needed to get to the bottom of what this change means for businesses working to rank for Google. So what does “machine learning” mean for SEO?
First off, it is important to know that Rankbrain is only a portion of the algorithm that Google uses to display search results. What Rankbrain does is try to take our very human way of searching, by using phrases like we are talking to someone, and decipher them. looks for patterns that programmers have programmed it to look for and make determinations based on pattern recognition. So people are still behind the process. So, machines aren’t becoming self aware yet! However there may be some level of learning that Rankbrain achieves over time, which is truly crazy to think about.
One thing to recognize that we already know is that Google actually considers Rankbrain quite important. So important in fact, that it is already considered the third most important signal that Google bases it’s rankings on. So what does that mean? Is it an improvement over how things were done before? The answer is YES. Rankbrain can actually look into the intent of the search, not just the keywords. It’s trying to be more “human” in the way that it provides search results to you.
As far as SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is concerned, we aren’t totally sure of the effects yet, but we really believe the goal is to provide the searcher with a better search experience. The good news is that it shouldn’t really affect how we do SEO. Currently, the focus in the SEO world IS the customer experience:
So you see, what we are doing will go hand in hand with Rankbrain in the realm of SEO. Our goal with SEO, and the goal of Google’s Rankbrain all seem to have the same focus in mind: The person doing the search. As long as we focus on that, we will do JUST fine. For questions about Rankbrain or SEO, contact the WTI SEO team at 309-489-0026 in Illinois or 712-792-4427 in Iowa.
More reading on Rankbrain:
Where we are located, both our Iowa and Illinois offices, there are a ton of small businesses. The biggest mistake we see, right off the top is that many small businesses owners don’t see the need for a web presence. One thing that we knew at WTI is that your website is the center of your whole marketing presence.
One big problem with small business sites it the lack of an impression as to what it is that you do. Visitors need to quickly be able to find what they are looking for. You need a welcoming site that doesn’t confuse potential customers as to what your brand is. If you have a small business site you will want to check these items off your list:
1. Does your website introduce your business to your visitors to your product or service?
2. Does your website convince your potential clients that you understand their needs?
3. Does your website convince potential clients that you are a professional?
4. Does your website make potential clients want to learn more about what you offer?
If you answered no to any questions above, you may want to see if you are making some the common mistakes we see in small business website design. Here are a few things to consider.
People need to know quickly what services you offer or what products you sell or you will lose them quickly. You need clear headings, images, graphics, and content that will allow your target audience to quickly understand who you are.
When it comes to search engine optimization even, Google expects your content to be well written and reader-friendly. If you have too much content or unorganized content you can lose your reader and Google, both of which are a death blow to your online marketing strategy.
Readers aren’t going to likely take the time to read ALL of your content. They need to easily be able to look through the content on the landing page they arrive on and find keywords that let them know you have what they need. Again, when it comes to Google, or Bing/Yahoo, they are looking for the same thing to show your site in search results.
If people can’t easily make their way around your website, you will lose them fast. We recommend keeping your menus simple. Keep in mind that in today’s online world, many people will find you on their smartphone or iPad and too many menus can be super confusing. Simple really is better in this case. Paired with organized content, you can do well with a simple way to navigate your site.
As we alluded to above, your website needs to be mobile friendly. There was a recent release of Google’s search ranking algorithm that makes this even more important as now rankings can be directly related to whether your site is mobile ready or not. A responsive website will re-size to whatever type of device you are using. Many small businesses have a website but don’t see the importance of updating it. This is a crucial update to consider, as it can directly affect the performance of your website.
Don’t make potential clients look all over your website to get a hold of you. Make your contact information easily available in the footer of your website or on a very easy to access contact us page. We also recommend a easy to fill out contact form that clearly targets what a person may want. Quote and estimate forms, contact us forms – these are all great options to make it easy for your customers to reach you.
First and foremost, make sure all legally able to use all images you have on your site, and that these images clearly represent your business. Next only use high-quality images to make the biggest, clearest impact on viewers.
Website design changes all the time, and you want to make sure that you change with it. Keep your website fresh and modern, and keep with current design trends if you can. The most important thing is to love your website. Have pride in it just like you would your storefront or office. Remember what we said in the first part of this blog – your website is your first impression to most. If you love your website it will show.
This is why Websites to Impress says “Love Your Website, We’ll Show You How!” We truly believe that your website and all of your online marketing is a huge key to the success of your brand. Even if you are a small business, believe it or not, you have a BRAND. Be clear and consistent through all of your online media from logos, to social media, to email blasts. Paint a clear picture of your business and you will see results. Call WTI to set up an appointment to get a free quote for your website. We are ready to help you love your website!
Many people think that paid solutions like Google Adwords and Bing Ads are the best solution to be found on the web. Others rely strictly on their social media presence to get them marketing results. We are here to tell you that while both of these are great, and yes – possibly a neccessity in this day and age of online marketing – you don’t want to ignore organic search.
It used to be that most business website owners relied completely on search engines results to get traffic to their website. In today’s world, marketing solutions are much more diverse, and it leaves people not knowing where to start. Many people find organic search the way of the past. Maybe this is true. Or IS it?
We all know how important it is not to put all your eggs in one basket. This is true of your online marketing campaign. What we do know is that it is important to consider SEO and organic search results for quite a few reasons. Here’s the reasons we best on as being the most important for your business:
1. ROI – as far as cost is concerned, your cost per lead for organic search results will provide a better return on investment, especially as you complete SEO on your website over time. The cost per lead statistically will go down as you have search engine optimization performed on your website.
2. Depending on social media alone is a scary prospect – you have no control how Facebook and other social media displays your information in the feed. Facebook recently started giving more credance to paid or boosted posts in their feed, so your followers don’t see as many of your posts as they used to. This could continue to occur, so it is good to follow through with SEO for organic to make sure you have organic results to back up social results. SEO companies like WTI are always keeping up on the most current Google changes (also called algorithms and have names like Panda and Penguin), so you don’t have to worry about loosing organic traffic loss the same way.
3. Social media creates traffic but the bounce rate can be high – with SEO and organic search, your SEO team is working on your website all the time, improving customer experience. This means that when you show in organic results and someone gets your website that way, you may have more page visits and a lower bounce rate than you might with social.
4. Keywords – this is a big one folks. When someone is looking for a product or service, they are searching with keywords. When someone is searching for your type of business using keywords, that shows intent or a need for your product or service. These are the people truly looking for something. When someone searches “plumbing services Milwaukee, WI” or “home improvement company Peoria, IL” they are looking for someone local to perform a service they need. Organic truly provides in these cases, as keyword searches are the basis for organic search results. Also, local SEO is more important than ever. 93% of the time the Google shows local search results at the top of the first page. That’s big for your business if you can make it into those local results.
5. SEO is an investment – the best thing about having SEO (search engine optimization) done on your site is that it doesn’t go away. If you use Adwords, as soon as you stop paying for clicks – POOF – no results. SEO and organic search don’t work that way. The work that is done will continue to provide you with results over time. While we recommend using Adwords for certain parts of your marketing campaign, SEO is a true investment that with provide ROI for years to come.
So when working on your marketing plan, don’t ignore organic search. It could be your website traffic meal ticket, and doesn’t appear to be going away any time soon. To learn more about SEO, or to come up with an online marketing plan that will help your business, contact the SEO / Online Marketing experts at Websites to Impress. We are located in both Iowa and Illinois, but with with clients all over. We would love to get you ranking organically, as we truly believe in it! Call today.
Recent discussion about SEO has revolved around whether or not your website is mobile friendly. With mobile searches going through the roof, and that not probably changing anytime soon, it is no wonder mobile is a topic of conversation. We are always looking forward though, especially when it comes to SEO or search engine optimization. We are always trying to find the next big thing. We are seeing that it could very well be video. Many companies and businesses don’t see how they could benefit from having videos on their website, but truth be told, everyone could benefit. Here are some top reasons to consider jumping on the YouTube / Vimeo bandwagon.
1. Videos mean more traffic to your website, which means more growth for you: According to Cisco’s 2014 Visual Networking Index, video makes up 64% of all internet traffic. Their studies also show that the percentage could climb to 80% by 2019! With numbers climbing that high, it’s smart to invest time right now into video marketing.
2. With free platforms like YouTube and Vimeo, video can be an inexpensive marketing method: You can get a lot of bang for your buck with videos. If you are a florist for example you can put together a video of “A typical Valentine’s Day” and show just how much work goes into preparing all those orders on Valentine’s day! You can then optimize the video (or have WTI do it for you!) and make sure it links back to your website. Remember, YouTube and Vimeo are search engines in their own right, so people that find your videos there can also find the link on your video back to your website. Boom, traffic!
3. If a picture is worth a thousand words, video is worth more: It’s not just that there is growth in the world of video, it’s that it is a proven method. There are studies that show that people are more likely to interact with videos than other online media. Videos are engaging and interesting.
4. For the most part, YouTube and Vimeo, as well as other online video streaming sites are easy to use: YouTube has lots of great documentation online that help get you through posting that first video. Most video streaming sites support all types of video files, so you don’t have to worry about converting files to support file types. If you are still a bit intimidated by YouTube or Vimeo, contact us at WTI. Many of our SEO packages include setting up sites like YouTube. You supply the video and we can help you optimize it! Another point to remember, YouTube is owned by Google, so having videos on YouTube definitely can’t hurt your Google rankings!
Video is going to do nothing but grow in popularity. Even if you get into the video world now, you aren’t getting in at the bottom. You can however jump on that ever growing video bandwagon. Video marketing is definitely a great option for businesses trying to expand their presence online. To learn more about video marketing and how it can help your search engine rankings, call Websites to Impress today!
SEO is a leading way to market your business even in today’s social media world. SEO can feel like a rat race though, and it is hard to know what to do to stay on top of the latest trends. WTI uses the following tactics, which we can help your business with, to stay on top of SEO in the current online world.
Google has made this harder than ever by removing the keyword data in Google Analytics. There is however other tools and ways to stay on top of what your customers are searching for. It is important to discover new ways to find keywords to target. Using tools like Google’s keyword planner available to Adwords clients is one way. Understand that content can not be packed with just keywords, it needs to be the kind of content that your potential clients are looking for, providing them with information and insights about your business and products. Look at what your competition is doing and how they are doing. WTI has a reporting software that can assist you with this, so ask us how we can help you with this task!
Blog posts and web content are a key facet in SEO in 2015. Making sure that those people are who are writing your content are also familiar with SEO can be a key factor in successful conversions to your website. Google algorithms like Panda let us know that your user experience on your website is what what you need to be focusing on. Make sure that you combine both creative writing with techinical SEO. The team at WTI is both expert in writing and techinical SEO, so this is another area where we can help.
Better yet, yesterday. Search Engine Watch claims that by 2018, the mobile search share will reach as high as 83% based on research from eMarketer. Google released an algorithm update in April of 2015 that gives priority to mobile websites. If these two things aren’t reason enough to consider making your website responsive, than we don’t know what is.
SEO is a journey, and really should be considered as part of owning a website. As always, we like to mention that one of the first questions people ask us after we develop a website is “Why can’t I find my website when I search for it?”. The answer is ever changing. The SEO team at WTI is always looking for the most current SEO methods. Organic search traffic can mean big revenue if you have the right team behind you. Call us to learn more about our SEO processes and packages today.
Related: Google and Mobile Friendliness
When consumers search for a topic and your website pops up, they quickly judge it in a matter of seconds. The content and overall appearance of the website determines whether they want to continue reading it or click the back button. With all the competition on the web, you need to make sure your website stands out. This is why Websites To Impress offers top-notch writing for our customers. We not only focus on web design, we create writing content for blogs and web pages.
Strong content. We capture the visitor’s interest by addressing the issues that matter the most. To accomplish this, we research the latest information about the products and services that your business offers.
Good grammar. Without good grammar, readers could misinterpret the message you are trying to convey. We make sure your content is well written so viewers can understand your products and services.
Less is better. Some writers think more is better, but removing useless words helps relay a clear concise point of view.
Update content. Since blogs attract readers, the experts at WTI constantly update them with new information. We provide new, creative topics to keep you interested.
Invite comments. We can set your blog page with a comment section for your readers. These comments can be read from other viewers. Comments also allow you to help answer questions viewers may have about your business.
Effective writing style. An effective website not only needs a great design, it needs to have a readable writing style. We always consider the audience. After all, a blog is like a conversation that features subject material, great ideas, and interesting topics.
Search Engine Optimization. When writing content, we incorporate unique keywords into your content. This helps get traffic from the “organic” search results on search engines.
If you need polished content writing for your site, contact Websites To Impress today. We have the skills and expertise to increase internet traffic to your site. We are located in Geneseo, IL but serve customers nationwide!