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Smashing It Online

Get Great Results From Your Online Marketing!

I got a confession to make……………………….some of the best exposure I get online is not from websites. Yes that is true! In fact a big part of what I offer to clients is not mentioned until I meet them face to face and even then they are often presented as up sells in my sales funnel. The reason? The options we have open to us as online marketers to target the right audience, increase traffic and rank fast changes all the time. In short like many others who work in this field I expect, I have a number of tricks up my sleeve, tricks which I really try to keep undercover……kind of. This is one of the reasons also I prefer non disclosure agreements with my clients. Many people like to show their portfolio or testimonials. Personally I like to keep relatively quiet about the work I have done, because ………..when push comes to shove I offer ideas and solutions which many of my competitors may not.

£1000 Value!!!

So, if any businesses want to try me out for size I have an offer. I will get a web property relating to your business ranked page one on Google within 24-48 hours ! I say web property remember not web page! The value of this web property ? Maybe £1000+ maybe a bit less. Either way I will do one of these for a keyword relevant to a business as an introductory offer to my services for the unreal fee of £150! So it sounds like a no brainer anyone fancies some good exposure for their business then give me a shout.

People can get charged hundreds if not thousands of ££££’s for a site to sit nowhere in the rankings. I can get a business top exposure for peanuts, considering! And if I do not pull it of………..if I just cannot get that ranking we both want then……………………you the customer pay me ZERO £££’s

Sounds like an unbeatable offer, sounds like anyone wanting to give this a try has nothing to lose? That is right!

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Safety

Just a quick post I guess but just something I want to mention. The thing is security! Well worth a word about I think. Once not too long ago I purchased a great domain an exact match domain back in the day when .com .net and .org exact match domains were still king. I even had the domain valued at something like $2000 not bad for something which cost me less than £10!

Anyways this domain was for a great little niche I had discovered and along with it I had a great digital product to promote through click bank. The keywords I was targeting had a healthy amount of traffic, I was all set and getting quite excited. However something happened which I never saw coming…………………………..the site got hacked and badly. I won’t go into details there is no point however one thing was for sure my entry into the niche was cut short before I made a single penny. I also learned a big lesson! Keep your websites secure!

There are Some good free security plugins available for WP users, nowadays my sites are usually hassle free!

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Help Pay For SEO

Something I like to talk about to others is different ways in which to monetise a website. I think this is super important because certain methods do exist and they can be employed to help generate extra income. Income that can be use to offset costs for SEO campaigns and other things pertaining to the business. Of course in the perfect world and in our world without limits, things have the potential to be extremely successful. In which case, such methods could give the business owner even more.

There are numerous methods a business owner can use to monetise their website beyond just using it as a way to get more customers and targeted leads. I cannot cover all of them in this short post, but to get one thinking along certain lines………

In an imaginary scenario, there is a plumber in a local area, he has a website and wants to give it direction. Of course they will want to attract as much targeted traffic they can. To do this they will need a certain amount of SEO which will obviously cost x amount of cash. This is no biggy in a way as certain costs can be shown to the accountant when it comes to paying taxes etc etc. However, why not maximise the situation for what it is and get as much as possible from the site?

Plumbing is one trade and sometimes people only do just need a plumber but sometimes they need more trades depending on the job. Of course one such method of monetisation presents itself here and this is very much in its most simplest form. The plumber could offer pages on his site to others trades people in the area for a fee. If the site was on page one this could sell it itself! Personally I think if the plumber was to try and charge £500 per year for such advertising I think it would be a good deal and how many different trades are there???  These days many people in SEO seem to charge around the £200 to £350  mark per month for local SEO service. So as low as just over a couple of grand per year! And at £500 per page x how many different trades = how much???

Or even another way let us imagine there is a beautician with a salon. The beautician has been going a while maybe and has so many likes and follows across social networks . They also have  a website they want ranked well on search engines.

Well this may seem all too simple but a while back I saw a CPA deal for a cosmetic company that paid $30 per email. So the beautician could have a  page set up leading people to the CPA deal. It could be through social networks showing a link through to a web page which would capture the email for further information on a product. The beautician could put a post on a social network maybe saying  just found some great make up or face cleaner blah blah, for more info go here. For every person who does and gives their email, the beautician will get a cool x amount of £££’s or $$$’s. This money can then be used for re investment or maybe just fun even:)

Yes there are many ways in which to monetise a site and I like to discuss them with clients of mine. SEO can be amazing it can get a site where it needs to be. However in addition to the SEO, a site can be optimised in a number of other ways, for selling, collecting leads and making money using methods like I have just mentioned.

It all helps:)

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Another Update

I  read a few days back that there was another Panda update by Google, the 24th in fact since it first came out in like February 2011 I think. So I guess thinking about it maybe there is pretty much one of these updates a month, how funny is that, not picking that one up until now:)

Maybe the reason I do not think about these updates so much is because I myself try not put out thin content on the sites I own and manage. The feeling I have, is to deal with these updates  or have no fear just by making better content, give a site more authority. It could also be a good idea to make a  site easier to use or navigate and link wise the social links or signals help with the authority aspect too.

Usually when one reads about these updates, somewhere in the region of about 1.0% plus or something of sites in Google get impacted. Of course, that is a lot of websites, but personally I try not to lose that much sleep over it.  Panda and the more recent Penguin have caused a lot of grief for websites and then more recently the update concerning exact match domains probably did not make a lot of people smile either.

Personally I do not like to judge in life, once upon a time people were doing what was needed to get good rankings among their competition and business is business. Unfortunately many of these sites were businesses with people to support  so ……….On the upside however the SEO that has emerged in its place is in the long run much easier, by building authority and by socially getting a good following.

I guess it is a no brainer that these updates will keep coming and coming with different names blah blah. Personally and this may sound kind of daft and it is only my opinion so it is up for correction but…………sometime ago I was listening to a guy on an SEO webinar and among other things he was talking about he happened to mention that Google invested heavily in artificial intelligence. I have only got his word to take for it but it made sense to me because it seems to me that all these updates are like Google refining its thinking process. After that, I just thought to myself do unto Google as I would do unto myself! Be my best self, do not lie, be honest, up to date blah blah. For me it is a path to follow among all the updates, opinions and one click software solutions out there

 

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What To Do With Traffic

Optimising a website for search is very important when trying to ensure success for a business online, however, optimisation goes much much further! Once a website receives a unique visitor it only has so long to convert them into a paying customer or targeted lead. In short, in addition to search engine optimisation, a website also needs to be optimised for sales and/or capturing leads.

Getting technical but not wanting to go too deep, there are a number of ways to do this. Many businesses  do what is called split testing, this is done by using alternative copy and images and assessing what variations create the most conversions and acting accordingly. A good way to split test is through CPC camapaigns! In addition to split testing, businesses in the know may also use what is called a heat map, a heat map is essentially  where data is recorded as an image or to be more  exact with regards to web pages, an image is captured and the amount of clicks will be highlighted almost like an infrared image. This is great to assess the design aspect of a web page as in what areas are the receiving the most clicks, what is grabbing the eye and assessing the percentage of traffic that is clicking where we would like them to click.

So SEO is kind of stage one, when one thinks about conversion rates one can ascertain how important optimising for sales is. Of course some websites do great but some have conversion rates of 1% and below even if they are on page one!

Beyond optimising for sales and before considering that getting it just right could be an uphill struggle that takes a whole lot of time, it is a good idea to consider the unique visitor or potential customer. As in how do they think, or maybe even ask yourself how do you think? Looking at the bigger picture not everyone is converted into  customer the first time they are exposed to something. Often it can take two, three,four five plus times before the person is converted, or until they have made up their minds. It is a  rule in business to build relationships, to build trust and it is a good idea to do this.

Considering the above it can be seen as very pro active move in online marketing to capture visitors. In reality if someone visits a site, is uninterested and decides to leave and never come back then they are gone for good. However if these visitors can be captured then a relationship between the business and potential customer can begin. Are they even required to visit the site regularly after they have been captured? As when they are on our mailing list or part of our social following then we can communicate with them at will and we can refine the process with things such as split testing our sales copy. Food for thought! The money is in the list!

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Is SEO Dead?

SEO, I love it but sometimes when I hear the words it kinds of gets under my skin! Why? I don’t know, maybe it is because whenever I think of it in my mind I think more about leveraging the power of the internet, the online world, whatever you want to call it. Search Engine Optimisation, yeah it is but………….In the world of online marketing SEO is the first step but these days in the world of leveraging the online world SEO now has  a few brothers or sisters.

SEO dead? Well no, despite the major changes in the last twelve, eighteen months, Panda updates, Penguin, and recently the exact match domain and then the disavow thingy:) in the end of the day, SEO is all about doing what it takes to get in the right place and get targeted traffic to a page or site. Things have changed for sure, there is no doubt about it!  Stories go around, how freaky to be a pro SEO guy, do all the stuff that works for a paying client only to have the rug pulled out from under you. What a pain to have a portfolio of great exact match top level domains only to perhaps see the value of some or all of them drop through the floor in price all because of an algorithm change.  However, and it is a big however SEO or as I like to call it online leveraging is very much alive because the SEO landscape has not disappeared it has merely changed in a number of ways. I watched a great webinar a couple of weeks ago and the guy hosting it is seen as a guy who is very much top dog in the world of SEO and what he said made sense. He kind of finished off by saying the SEO of old was based on math the new SEO is based on marketing! How often has google said that good content will win the day? This guy went on to say old SEO is like always playing catch up, new SEO is about leading the field.

The new SEO excites me! In a way it will make things easier for everyone, content will be newer, votes will be more human, people will be taking part, the quality and value that a business or service provides will be key in the future to their SEO or website rankings. All a good thing! There is a lot of junk content online, a lot of pollution that people don’t need. The days of producing spun articles, heaps of forum and blog posts on randon inappropriate sites , .edu links from random blogs overseas linking to a plumbers website in Essex are so yesterday and lets be honest on reflection kind of stupid considering that search engines like Google are in fact so I have been told based and operate like artificial intelligence, they aint stupid!

To me,  the skill to see where  traffic is going, see what the competition for that traffic is and the ability to put something in place to capture that traffic or hungry audience, is nothing short of golden! If research is sound and if the content and product or service is good then perhaps the thought of gaming the system will soon be a thing of the past. Surely that is the intention of all these changes, improve the quality for users.

After removing bad links and so on after a drop in rankings, some may scratch their head contemplating what to do next to help things, to others what to do next would have been apparent twelve months ago. Perhaps when it comes to SEO and the future it could be healthy to think maybe don’t try and second guess something like a search engine instead consider a search engine wants to think more like us, a person. Think how a person who respects respect would think and make decisions and maybe just maybe that is the direction of the major search engine. SEO dead? No! But if anything it will demand more quality and more honesty but will no doubt provide more value and greater benefit to everyone concerned.

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New Google Algorithm Update !

Well it happens apparently something like four hundred times per year, the old algorithm updates at Google, however maybe many of them are kind of like tweaks. Every now and again however there is something pretty major that hits the scene. Last year it was the Panda update this year it could be the Penguin update.

The Penguin update was launched on the 24th of April, only a few days ago however it is really causing a stink on certain posts online. I read one last night from some dude who claims his website employs a couple of people, gives him a living, supports the family, pays his mortgage but now it has all gone in days due to the update. I saw that some other guy had even started a petition against it, wow!

Essentially the update is targeted at web spammers, low value content, paid link schemes, keyword stuffing and regarding on page factors the structure of a site has come under increasing scrutiny. Duplicate pages and so on.

So as always there are people like the cases above who have been hit hard by this and are complaining and of course there are certain people who sound like holy smart arses saying that it is cool, to be expected blah blah.

My opinion on it for what it is worth…….I kind of feel a bit of both ways on it and for two reasons. First of all in defence of such changes, yes they are intended to make search a better and more rewarding experience that is for sure, however………….It seems to me that a new change comes out, SEO changes a little because of what it demands. People quite innocently do what they are told to do and because of the competitive nature of business, of the internet they do what they have to do to get ahead. Let us not forget that low value sites can and do get high rankings through certain link building and other SEO efforts. I am not excusing this, far from it because in many ways such unfair techniques are in a way ripping people off in one form or another. However it seems to me that many people have tried to build links quite innocently and even offered value in the process, think high quality article sites, not bad ones. I personally feel very sorry for the innocent people who have got stung from such activity because at one time that was very much where the arrow was pointing in terms of getting high quality backlinks with good velocity. But at the same time(innocent people aside) spammers are a pain in the ass, they are the pollution of the online world and for environmental reasons they need to be addressed:)

The crazy thing is in my mind that Google announces something and everyone jumps in that direction, they change direction and then there is a car crash so to say. As of today, social signals are very important to search results. In fact this seems to be the new buzz for SEO. Get people talking about your site, links from FB, Twitter blah blah. You can see the logic behind this, because such signals, such votes are human…….but are they? I say this because there are ways to manipulate social media for your own gains, for the benefit of your rankings in search engines. I do not necessarily use such techniques but I know these techniques or at least where or how to do them. Of course others know this too and in time more people will and then there will be as much social media spam as there is backlink spam and so on and so on. However long down the road, there will be a car crash again I am guessing and people who have been investing man hours and cash in their projects thinking it is the right way to go will be super annoyed to say the least.

But at the same time and it is kind of bitter sweet, I guess human emotion cannot be taken into account  and things need to be done to improve things and make things more honest for people. My only gripe is what next!!! Of course I myself look at the Google webmaster guidelines and what is stated within has been Google’s Gospel for a while now however…….I am not so sure if great websites make it to the top on looks and content alone. I say this because I myself two years ago invested quite heavily in the creation of a website that to be quite frank about it was much better than any other website in the world for that particular subject and still very much is. I know this because I made it that way, I looked at what my competition would be and acted accordingly, nothing compares! However where is that site today? Well it is on page one for the main keyword a keyword that gets typed into Google about half a million times per month! It also has about eighteen million competing pages, however it is not on the top of page one, in fact it is at the very bottom……so, I could be forgiven for asking “hey,where is my commercial”. On top of this, I can honestly say that I had to get extremely aggressive early on SEO wise with the site. So for me personally it feels like six of one and half a dozen of the other, know what I am saying:))) If I had not worked on it from an SEO angle I doubt one could even find it, I mean for a while it was hanging around way back there! I have to point out also that when I was starting a strategy for that site, I by chance found an incredible website, in fact it took my breath away a bit, everything was right about it but from what I could see it was nowhere. I remember to this day how sorry I felt for the owner, it was a great site at the time!

I do not know, well in one respect I do know, I mean if a client comes to me tomorrow with a fresh plan then I have got one for them too in fact it is the same as I have had for a while now, for me kind of nothing has changed but…….I can see that some people with good sites have been hit hard.

It is one of them nothing and nobody is perfect, there is actually something about this exact website that runs foul of this new update, although to my knowledge it is not due to spam but instead something else and quite innocent too.

Yes in case you have not noticed, this site is kind of still under construction. The reason, I am always super busy with new projects and stuff. I keep making my posts though, so as to offer readers some value. If anyone reading this is keen to read more then this is a super SEO blog or here is another great blog for the world of SEO.

 

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Interesting News About The The sites That Inspired SEO

It is a mad old world, you turn on the tv watch the latest news report,see the euro zone shrinking, growth in the UK as minimal and then notice the BRICS countries growing at a rate of knots. I think the Brazilian economy for example is growing this year at something like 8+%.Sounds pretty big hey?But what about 24%? Super growth! What country is that you may be thinking? Answer, not a country but Google. Yeah in an SEO blog post I ain’t going to get all economics but I think it illustrates a point pretty well.24%!!!
Interesting really, or I thought so anyway! In an article that I found very interesting, it tells you why! I could write a summary of it here but it if you are interested it could be better to get it straight from the horses mouth and go have a read from the source where I found it,SearchEngineWorld.com. It is a super site for keeping up to date with news in the SEO world and personally I check it a few times a week, it really is highly recommended.
Yes and If you go take a look at the site you will also notice a couple of interesting posts concerning Yahoo’s fortunes.
Personally, back in 1997 when I first started to use the Internet on a very regular basis I never thought the site would go in the direction it has. However there is a future for all of us and who knows Yahoo could still turn it around one day. However, let us not forget that along with a link from DMOZ a paid link in the Yahoo directory is still pretty much the best and most powerful back link you can have for your site. Apparently, I read somewhere else that although the number of people using yahoo has declined rapidly over the years, it has supposedly maintained a loyal following among the older generation.
If you are interested in these two great sites which help to give birth the wonderful industry of search engine optimisation then head on over to searchengineland.com for a good read.

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SEO social media and a little about Twitter

Thanks again for checking out my SEO blog posts! It has been a while since I made my last one, sorry life kind of took over for a while!
Well, what is new today or since the last time I made a post, in a nutshell, not much I don’t think or at least maybe things SEO wise are still heading in that more social direction. What I mean by that is that SEO through social media still to me seems to be the future of things. I think I may have wrote this at some other point in the past however if I did, to reiterate the point. In the past and still now,people out there attach heaps of importance to back links and indeed it is true you certainly need them I just think it is more going in the direction of where these back links originate from. Traditionally and it sounds funny saying that:)) backlinks were to google a vote for your site and still are however let us say that the back link strategy has been abused over time and now there are some very dubious networks that could seem kosher but would do your site no advantage at all.Think dodgy article networks or article syndication with dodgy link velocity on your part. So of course if you have links now coming from social media sites such as Facebook Twitter and Google+ and these are legitimate links with people actually talking about your product or service then then it is a no brainier these are real votes and votes done by a real human at that!
A slight problem may have occurred though, think about it and it should not be too hard to get your head around. Of course, people out there are starting to spam the hell out of social networks with useless comments that offer no value to anyone, such links are just intended to give a site a push and not to engage real people who are using social media.
Well maybe just maybe that will be coming to an end shortly as the latest word from a cool little SEO resources are telling me that Twitter in particular has had a gutfull of this kind of activity and wants to protect its web properties in the best way possible and I got to say, can you really blame them. After all, just like google, Twitter will want to give its users the best value for their time and let’s face it, who the hell wants to follow some idiot who tweets every five seconds and just talks rubbish for the sake of a link. Your feed would be crowded out by rubbish and you may well miss out on what the latest celebrity has just tweeted, not too cool aye!
So, you could be thinking what is the squeeze here and how will this apply to my SEO.Well like always I say keep your SEO clean and simple then you lessen your chances of something coming back to bite you on the bum. Just like smoking maybe it can feel good in the short term but not so hot years later when you are out of breath.
Regarding Twitter however they are taking action against a number of entities that sell or advocate software that helps people to spam their system.
There you go, another real example illustrating how uncool it is to be a spammer these days. I mean really every business or service that has succeeded in history did so by offering value if only online marketers and webmasters gave the public what they are looking for then achieving good rankings could be that whole lot easier. Just good honest content, on time with real people talking about it can work wonders for your website.
Well thanks again for taking the time for reading this post, it is always cool to ramble on about what is going on online and there is always so much to talk about it is just the time especially when it comes to search engine optimisation. I am thinking that it must be the fastest moving industry in the world or at least one of them, I know it makes my head spin. Til next time take it easy!

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SEO And A New Found Keyword With High Commercial Intent!

I got to be quick with this SEO post but I just have to write it, it could let one see a big plus in SEO! Really, take a read and think to yourself afterwards how you would feel if you found the same.

So what is the story? Let me start by saying that if you have read any of my other “off the wall” SEO blog posts and if you are new to all things SEO then you would have gathered that a very important part of SEO is the initial keyword research to build your site around.

Well……guess what? Let it be known that although I am a graphic design,multimedia design and illustration graduate who has been making the most out of IT for almost 15 years, it is through my interest in business and making money that got me started in SEO. My introduction to SEO came some time ago now through affiliate marketing and all that it takes to understand it successfully!

Well of course affiliate marketing is a hard thing to get right if one is not doing it right, same as anything you know. However with affiliate marketing you have to get it spot on and then some for instance, how far down the rabbit hole can one go with marketing alone, you could find that magic bullet and then split test it even further.

Well anyway I do not want to sound like a swell head but after so long and also with a good helping of intuition, I am, I can honestly say, pretty hot at finding profitable niches despite many things being kind of tapped out.

So, back to my main reason for writing this post and also following on from the last paragraph:) Wait for it………………………..just now I found a keyword or search term that received 60,500 searches per month, the cost per click was almost £2 and happy days for me, getting on page one for this keyword did not look like it would be too much of a headache. On top of all this I did a search with godaddy and with a slight variation I can buy the exact match domain too.

Of course I am not going to reveal this keyword, why would I?……….it could be worth £100′s or even £1000′s to me every month if I do the right thing, whilst all the time being under the radar so to say. Am I happy about this? Yes of course, in fact I am pretty super stoked about it however…………Think about it, how would you feel if this was you?

Really, go on think about it,what if? What if someone approached me told me what their target market was expecting X. I returned to them and told them of X amount of other approaches they could take to get to their target market by way of search terms.Search terms they did not know even existed, among competition they need not worry about not being able to dominate online. How would they feel? How would you feel if my find was really your find? If really I had found you an easy path for 60,500 people to get to your site every month, how would you feel? Your product or service costs how much? How much even 5% conversion of 60,500 can be a lot of money depending on what you are selling.

Yes many things are tapped out online yet in many other ways a huge land grab has been and is taking place. Surely if you are doing business online, you must want some right? Well if you do, there is no time like the present and I really would like to be able to do some great things with SEO for your business. Until next time…:)

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