Content Marketing and SEO

Similar to aiding your content to succeed on social media networks, it is also vital for your content to succeed with search engines as well. Although, two entirely different functions, SEO and content marketing do overlap and blend together. Think of it this way, SEO makes demands and content marketing is the solution to those demands.

With both helps, weaving SEO practices into your content will help make a good impression and move your website up the ranking list on sites such as Google.

Here are some tips and examples that content and SEO continue to work and blend together.

  • Use keywords – Use keywords naturally to identify your main keyword for the content. SEO demands keywords, and it is one of the fundamental components from it. For example, utilizing the keywords and tracking their rankings. For example, using a few synonyms, and a few related keywords and using them in your content, headers, and page content.
  • Use natural links– Building links is fundamental when it comes to SEO, and the only way to get linkback is having content worth linking to. However, be careful when linking as links from spam sources can hurt your site with search engines. Instead, build relationships with industry professionals who can share your content and link it to their primary resources.
  • Consistent – Consistent is key in both SEO and Content marketing. Fresh context gets indexed easily and ends up being registered on the older low-value content. Keeping it fresh and updated frequently is the only way to truly keep both combinations successfully working.

SEO is all about content marketing and content marketing is all about SEO. Remember creating content for your client and audience. Creating good content and having a good marketing strategy provides the information and answers that your target is looking for.

5 Must Have Features for Your Small Business Website

Making sure your business website has everything it needs can be a little overwhelming. From having all your business contact information properly in place or having to be certain that your website has a clear description of what your services are can make a huge impact on whether a view becomes a customer. Having a clean and modern approach to your site is what makes a business successful, especially when it embraces the right features. Here are 5 features each website should have:

  1. Mobile Friendly – Your small business depends on a good mobile strategy. Today, the majority of people research, browse, shop and do absolutely everything straight from a mobile device. Making sure your site supports every inch of its site through mobile can make a huge difference in keeping your customers happy and also informed.
  2. Integrate your Social Media – If your business is serious about using social media as a marketing tool either for your business or as a resource, having it connected to your site is important! Having it integrated with your main site allows an easier way for you to connect with your customers and vice versa. Always be sure the buttons are visible on every page, preferably top or bottom of the site.
  3. SEO – Search Engine Optimization is fundamental for any and every small business website. When using SEO, they have two functions: providing a ranked list of websites based on relevance to search term, as well as crawling and indexing sites. It helps position your website at a proper place where customers can find you easily when in need of a specific product or service.
  4. Include Testimonials and Reviews – Using testimonials of the customers who have used your business can help convert your website visitors into customers. This feature is one of the best ways to grab attention to your customers by showing the uniqueness of your business in comparison to others. It allows the customers to get to know you from a different perspective.
  5. Easy Navigation – Having a clean and easy navigation throughout your website can make your customers very happy. Think about what customers need to do on a specific page or where they should go to contact a staff member or customer service. The main page should have features that are easy to navigate to your customers.

These features will help you get started on your business website and successfully maintain it up-to-date with your customers.

How to Make your Business Blog Unique

Your blog is a great representation of what you want your business to stand for – well thought out and accurate knowledge for your audience. Blogging is known as an effective way for businesses and individuals to provide information, gain more business and create a strong relationship within their customers/audience. However, as the blogging industry continues to bloom, you’ll find hundreds and hundreds of blogs all trying to grab attention. Knowing what can make your blog stand out from the crowd is an important key to its survival.

So, how can you make your business blog unique?

  1. Content – Using content that specifically meets the needs, services and products of your business will be useful for your clients. Using ways to provide new and informative content to your blog gives your customers and easier way to be in the know of everything in your business. The more useful information you post, the more your readers will become regulars.
  2. Images and Videos – Having mixed media within your blog can definitely be a boost and maintain traffic. Having mixed media is a way to have your readers engage on a level that they prefer, making them crave for the next post.
  3. Find the Holes – One of the best ways to stand out, is looking for holes in any offerings of your competitors. If many fail to provide a service to a problem, use that specific niche as a problem solver and stand out with the difference.
  4. Become the expert – Your post can help demonstrate your expertise on a particular subject within your business, whether it’s in photography, graphic design, etc., over time you can become a go-to resource to your clients. This trick can help your readers be engaged in learning new resources and solutions in the specific subject.

Remember, your business blog should be easy to read and still encourage your readers to engage. Providing effective posts can create a support and loyalty system to your readers and customers.

Importance of SSL Certificate

Have you ever noticed the http:// and https:// in front of a URL before and wondered what they mean, or why the variation exists? Well, that is because the S in front of the Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (http) determines whether or not the website has a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Certificate. Do you have an SSL Certificate in your website? Let’s look at some of the reasons for why you should consider it.

The ultimate purpose for an SSL Certificate is to secure all communication between your browser and the website, which secures the connection between clients and the server as information is being loaded. It encrypts all the data so it’s only understood and seen by those who are intended to have the information. This encrypts information by using two different keys. One key is the private, which is only known to the recipient of the data, and the second key is public.

This is important because information that is submitted to the Internet could get lost, or end up in the wrong destination since these data pass through multiple computers before reaching its target. SSL Certificates holds all types of important information, like the domain name, the owner’s name, the location of the owner, and more! Could you imagine if this type of information ended up in the wrong hands? That is why SSL is important.

If your business is a retail business or requires the exchange of money, having an SSL Certificate is a requirement. In other words, you need to have an SSL Certificate in order to accept online credit card payments. Aside from this, though, online users who know of SSL will NOT risk shopping on a non-secure site, so not having one can inhibit your business’ sales. Having this certificate can not only help you keep all important data secured but also help create a trusting relationship with your customers, which is needed in order to ensure that they will return to your site.

Plugins We Like: WooCommerce

E Commerce is the transaction of money made through the Internet. Having a reliable way to make such transactions is crucial especially when your entire business depends on it. This is why WooCommerce is our go-to ecommerce plugin.

WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin created to allow you to sell absolutely anything, from physical object to digital tools. It is also one of the most used for online stores on WordPress, which could be because of the full control WooCommerce provides to both store owners and web developers. With this plug in you get control of the following:

-Discounts

-Bookings (for restaurants, hotels, etc.)

– Memberships and subscriptions

-Shipping Rate

-Shipping locations

-Transaction type

-Shipping company

…. AND MORE!

We asked our designers and developers Stacey, Clair and Azizul what their opinions are on WooCommerce and why it is our most favorable ecommerce plugin. According to their experiences, they have found WooCommerce to be highly customizable and easy to manage items. They also agreed it is very user friendly for clients with multiple built-in payment options and easy checkout process. They did point out, however, that there are many premium plugins that require payment so, not all the customization options are free. Another important fact to note is that this interface is most useful for small to medium ecommerce businesses. If you are a small, startup retail business owner, WooCommerce would be the best option for you.

5 Ways to Improve Your Website this New Year

A new year brings new resolutions, new improvements and new opportunities for growth. We’re sure you have a list of your own personal resolutions lined up and today, we are here to help you achieve your website resolutions and improvements for your companies sites. Follow along to learn about 5 different ways to improve your website and gain more viewers.

 

  1. Be obvious about website navigation.

Website navigations helps visitors find what they are looking for first, and increase search engine ranking second. Therefore, use keywords that would be obvious for your visitors; this may mean no internal lingo. Remember that the less clicks visitors have to go through to find what they are looking for, the better.  

 

  1. Add a CTA throughout your website.

After providing your visitors with all the information they are looking for, give them a sense of direction so they know what they can do next with the information provided. Remember that each call to action (CTA) should begin with a verb and should be set apart from the rest of information. For example, a yellow button that says “Add to Cart.”

 

  1. Add internal links throughout your website.

Internal links are not only great for SEO but they are also great for keeping your visitors browsing through your website for a longer time. Internal links can be used to direct visitors to pages with further, more detailed, information about a particular service or product mentioned in a different page.

 

  1. Avoid using carousels.

Statistics show that internet users don’t even get to the fifth slide in a carousel. If you insist on having one in your website, minimize the amount of slides to three. Otherwise, use alternative to carousels such as changing your layout to a Hero layout, highlighting your major services or products on the homepage and direct them to its page, or providing a video that highlights top services or products.

 

  1. Lose the testimonial page.

The truth is that visitors don’t go to your website looking for such page. The best way to highlight positive reviews about your company is by incorporating quotes or highlights throughout your website in different pages, such as the product page, about page, contact page, etc.

 

How to Promote Content

What would be the point of creating content if it is not going to be shared or viewed by others? Getting your content viewed by others is more important than creating content in general. Because of this, we have composed a list of tips to help promote your content in the best ways possible.

Share on social platforms:

This is one of the more obvious tips. Whenever you create content, you should always start by self promoting it on your social media, as well as on your website. Remember that each social platform requires a different form of content sharing, so make sure you are adjusting the way you promote it according to the social media.

Share snippets on social media:

Take several “snippets” of information from your content to share online in order to catch the audience’s attention and promote your content several times throughout the month. These snippets can be quotes, statistics, short statements, etc.

Mention those included in your content:

If you have important companies or personas mentioned in your content, like in a blog post, make sure to tag or mention their social media accounts when promoting. This will help get your content viewed by outsiders who may not have heard of your business before, especially if those who are being mentioned repost or share the content as well.

Get connected:

Connect with other who post similar content as you through email or on their social media. Share what you have created with them and ask them for their thoughts and if they wouldn’t mind sharing your content on their platform.

Share in different forms:

Try making your content more appealing by converting it into a different media form. Short videos and infographics are a great way to share content while keeping it interesting and entertaining. Switching up your content is always a great way to keep your audience engaged.

 

Plugins We Like: WP Job Manager

In the past we have made a post on reasons why your company should consider posting job opportunities on your website. We have mentioned benefits like saving money, easy sharing, grabbing web surfers’ attention, and more (visit the blog here). Well, today we are highlighting our favorite job listing plugin, WP Job Manager. Not only does this allow you to post job opportunities directly onto your site, but it also allows you to manage those job listings. This job manager has many features that make the plugin one of our favorites.  

An important thing to point out about the WP Job Manager plugin is that it is very simple to set up and works well with many themes. One of the plugin’s best features is that it allows fully managing, categorizing, and adding as many job listing as available. When submitting the listing, it allows you to preview it first. You are also able to link each listing to either an email or website address to allow job seekers to easily apply. Job seekers can also be alerted whenever a new job matching is available through RSS links.

We asked two of our designers, Phil and Jose, for some insight on the WP Job Manager plugin and how they felt about it. Even though this is a great job management plugin, they both agreed on one flaw: it is difficult to customize. According to Phil and Jose, once the plugin has been added, it easily grasps the theme of most templates but it can be difficult to adjust it to customized websites. However, they both agree that once it is implemented, it handles data well and does a great job at managing an unlimited amount of job listing and applications.  

Unconventional Tips for Content Creation

When creating content, whether it’s for a blog, social media, or anything in relation, we may get stumped or get writer’s block more often than we’d like. Many times, when it happens, we tend to just write down anything we can come up with and end up creating content of  lower quality than we’d like. Because of this we have searched and come up with some tips to help free our minds and make space for more creative ideas. If interested in these unconventional tips, continue reading.

Tip 1: Recite what you want to write before writing it.

Many times, when we recite the next sentence we want to write down in our heads we end up forgetting or “losing our spot” in between. By vocally narrating before writing we can keep track of what we are writing and get our complete thoughts down. Using a recording device or app can help with this tip.

Tip 2: Notice what sparks ideas throughout the day.

When doing regular day activities there are times when certain ideas strike us at random. Paying attention to what actions or things trigger those ideas can be helpful; it may help spark future ideas.

Tip 3: Save the editing for the very end.

When you’re on a writing streak, stopping in the middle of it to go back and edit something can make you lose focus on what you are writing and take too much time switching back and forth from editing mode to writing mode. Writing down everything that comes to mind first and saving the editing for the very end is a more efficient way of getting the job done.

Tip 4: Get on a writing schedule.

Focusing on your daily rhythm and the point of the day where you are more energized and focused can help you create a writing schedule that is more efficient for you. This can also help you create quality content!

Tip 5: Take short breaks while working.

When working for long periods of time we can get bored and lose focus or concentration on what we’re working on. This is why taking few minute breaks throughout the day can help improving your productivity and help you creating quality content.

Tip 6: Create an outline.

Create an outline and work backwards on it. Start with the point of your post and develop an outline from that point. This way the content you come up with can connect to the overall purpose of your post.

A/B Testing

 

A/B Testing, also known as Split Testing and Bucket Testing, is a way of comparing two different versions of anything from websites to an app. According to Mike Sperling, the way it works is by showing versions A and B to a percentage of your consumers and test the outcome or response rate of each one. With that, the one that has the best response rate would be the one you send out to the rest of your consumers.

 

To get into more details on how to perform an A/B testing is by taking it as a scientific experiment:

  1. Start with a question, or the purpose for doing the experiment.
  2. Research consumers’ behaviors through analytics or past experiments.
  3. Make a hypothesis, or statement on the outcome of the experiment.
  4. Figure out the percentage of people you would like to perform the testing on and the length of the experiment.
  5. Perform the A/B Test where A would be the controlled substance and B is the variation.
  6. Analyze the study and conclude which form would be best to go with.

A/B testing is a perfect experiment to perform especially when making changes that could significantly increase leads, sales and revenue. These experiments are great overall because they help construct hypothesis and help get a better understanding of what experiences impact your consumers. If done consistently, it can even help gradually improve your site or marketing items.

 

This kind of testing can be done on anything, really:

-Headlines

-Sub headlines

-Paragraph Text

-Social Proof

-Testimonials

-Call to action

-Links

-Media Mentions

-Images

– Awards and badges

-Content near a fold