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Sunday, January 21, 2018 6:00:00 PM

by Robert Clough


Starting July of 2018, Google will use page speed as a ranking factor in mobile search


Using page speed in mobile search ranking
The "Speed Update," as we're calling it, will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries.


The Google Speed Update - Search Engine Land
Back in 2010, Google said page speed was a ranking factor but it "was focused on desktop searches" only. Now, in July 2018, it will look at how fast your mobile pages are and use that as a ranking factor in mobile search. Google has been promising to look at mobile page speed for years now, and it is finally coming.

FAQs on new Google Speed Update - Search Engine Land
We asked Google several questions about this update, including how this impacts desktop pages, whether pages with AMP URLs but slow canonical URLs will be impacted, if webmasters will get Search Console notifications and more.

Google to Use Page Speed as Ranking Signal in Mobile Search - Search Engine Journal
As important as speed will become, Google says it can be superseded by query intent. A slow page may still rank well if it's content is highly relevant to what the user is searching for.

Google Algorithm Designed To Downgrade Slow Mobile Pages - Search Engine Roundtable
Google says you can measure your page speed multiple ways and they are not sharing a specific single metric to know if your site was hit by this algorithm update or not.


Top advice and articles about search engine marketing


What's next for technical SEO?
As web technologies continue to grow and evolve, interest in technical SEO is growing along with it. Columnist Patrick Stox looks ahead to see what advancements are on the horizon and how these may impact technical SEO.


Duplicate Content on Product & Category Pages
On a recent Google Webmaster Hangout a publisher asked if using content from product pages on the category pages will cause either of those pages or both to be demoted. Google's John Mueller offered his opinion on how Google handles the duplicate content


Google My Business Videos Now Live
Videos will appear in the overview tab of the Google My Business Dashboard. Customer uploaded videos can be found in the 'customer' tab. Merchant uploaded videos can be found in the 'by owner' tab. All videos can be viewed together in the 'videos' tab.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Saturday, January 20, 2018 2:15:36 PM

by Robert Clough

Whether you own a salon or an e-commerce store, any business can benefit from using the app. Read on to learn how you can use Instagram as a marketing tool.

Businesses have yet to really figure out Instagram as a marketing tool. It's massively popular and everyone wants a piece of that traffic. And most people think they have it figured out, but they don't.


The Instagram audience is extremely specific. And most people actually have no idea how to measure success on Instagram. Is it Likes? Followers. It's neither, actually.

Let's take a closer look at how to find success on IG and make sure it keeps coming.

Remember: Not Every Business Belongs on Instagram

You have to ask yourself if your business belongs on Instagram and give yourself an intelligent answer.

Now that answer is not just based on a gut-feeling or assumption. You need to answer it by doing extensive market research on your target market to really know.

But maybe you've already done the research and you've created 4 different buyer personas, and none of them are interested in seeing your brand on IG. Fair enough. But if you dig into it a little bit, you may find a new sub-sector of fans-in-waiting.

You can assume Instagram is or isn't right for you, and be right 75% of the time. Do you sell industrial sized wood lathes? Instagram likely isn't for you. Do you sell bootcut jeans dam? Then people probably do want to see your stuff.

But you can never know for sure, until you do the research.

Never Buy Followers

We cannot stress this enough. It can be tempting, we know.

You've probably seen pop up ads, or spam emails. Promising you hundreds of thousands of followers for only a few dollars. Well, those emails are in your spam folder for a reason.

So never do this. Ever. Ever-ever.

We get it. It looks impressive at first glance. Your brand has 500,000 followers. This "social proof" may be enough to inspire an actual human being to follow you, and you can build your real following on the backs of your fake following? Right?


Here's the thing. The jig is up the second someone looks at your posts. People are not stupid.

They will notice the fact that you have 175,000 followers, but absolutely zero likes on your last post.

No engagement really stands out. And once people notice that, they will know you bought a following. And they will lose respect for you and your brand.

Also, Instagram hates fake followers and they are taking big steps towards cutting down on fake accounts.

So what happens when fake accounts are culled and your flock falls from 150,000 to 150? You look very, very bad.

Know What Success Looks Like

This is one of the most misunderstood parts of using Instagram as a marketing tool. "Do we even know what a win looks like?"

First of all, you need to be sure on your own end on exactly what you're looking for. You need to have a goal, or you'll end up floundering and doing nothing.

Why are you even on Instagram? "Because everyone else is." Wrong answer. "Because we want to grow our brand awareness or thought leadership." Much better.

Be clear if you're on IG to generate brand awareness, or to generate sales leads. Because too many don't make the distinction, focus on either, and accomplish neither.

In either case, don't get hung up on followers so much. Followers can often be a "vanity metric."

It only gives you the illusion of accomplishments.

Brand Awareness

Look at engagement, not followers. It's better to have a smaller following full of people commenting and liking your content, versus having a massive inactive following.

Also, don't forget about "dark social shares." These are shares that happen outside of the app, and out of easily measurable range.

As much as 89% of your social shares will happen on "dark social." This means someone will screen-grab your image, or the link and share it via:

  • Text message/ SMS

  • iMessenger

  • Whatsapp

  • Facebook messenger

  • Email

  • Any other IM or messaging service

This is because people are very loyal to their favorite messaging app. This is where all of their contacts live. At least the ones they deem share-worthy. They have a tight circle of people they send things to every day.

Also, in a lot of cases, they're sharing something with someone (possibly over 30) who is not on Instagram.

Lead Generation

This is a tougher nut to crack. Because it's very easy to have 10,000 likes with no noticeable uptick in sales or qualified leads.

It's easy if you're one of the businesses on IG that allow their customers to buy right from their images, it's easy to track. But for the rest of us, it's a little more in-depth than that.

You will have to use your own channels to measure how many of your referrals or foot-traffic has come as a result of seeing you on Instagram.

Bonus Tip: If you run unsuccessful Instagram campaigns (ie, no leads), don't necessarily write off Instagram as a marketing tool.

Ask yourself "How was the user experience outside of Instagram?" For example, did you send traffic to, A) a standard service page, or B) a dedicated landing page for the campaign. If you answered A), you set your campaign up to fail.

Also, there could have been a disconnect between the offer in the Instagram post and the landing page/ destination. If you're promising a free iPad in your post, that had better be the first thing people see when they arrive on your landing page.

Because if they land on a page with no mention of the offer, they will assume they're in the wrong place, or this was a bait and switch situation. In either case, you just lost a lead.

Learn More Than How to Use Instagram as a Marketing Tool

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Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:56:11 PM

by Robert Clough

Looking to improve the visibility of your HVAC company website? Then don't miss this article. Here you'll find 6 must-know HVAC SEO tips.

Did you know that there are over 1.2 trillion global searches being conducted each month?

That's right - and it means that you can't ignore SEO when it comes to promoting your HVAC business online. If you want the right customers to find you at the right time, you need to make sure your website ranks as highly as possible.

Not got a clue how to do SEO?

Don't worry. You won't need to be an expert to follow the simple HVAC SEO tips below, and you'll soon see results.

1. Do Your Keyword Research

There's no point in creating an awesome SEO strategy if you're targeting the wrong keywords.

Before you get stuck into a campaign, you need a good idea of what your target clients are searching for.

As a starting point, make a list of the services you offer, and the locations you're able to travel to. This might leave you with combinations like, "AC repair Texas", or "HVAC maintenance Florida".

Now that you've got a general idea of what customers might be searching for, it's time to plug your keywords into a keyword research tool. You'll then be given stats showing how competitive each keyword is, and how many people search for it each month.

For the most successful HVAC SEO strategy, try to pick keywords with a high search volume and low competition.


2. Set up a Google My Business Page

Google is the largest search engine by far, and setting up a Google My Business page is one of the best ways to improve your presence there.

You'll be prompted to enter details including company name, location, services, contact details, web address, and more. These details will then be displayed on the right-hand side of search results when a customer searches for you.

Pretty cool, right?

Having a Google My Business page doesn't just boost your SEO ranking. It also makes you look more professional, allows you to answer customer questions, and lets happy clients leave reviews for all to see.

If you only have ten minutes to spend on HVAC SEO, spend it making a Google My Business page.

3. Optimize Your Site for Keywords

Remember those awesome HVAC SEO keywords you picked out in step one?

It's time to put them to good use.

Optimizing your site for keywords doesn't mean stuffing them into every sentence you write, but it does mean using them organically when it makes sense.

If you found that one of the best keywords to target was, 'heating repair', it makes sense to use this in your site title, in H1 tags, in image alt text, and in your site description.

For keywords that don't fit as easily into the main body of the site, it's a good idea to think about starting a blog - more detail on this in the next section.

4. Take Advantage of Content Marketing

Content marketing, or business blogging, is a seriously powerful way to increase your HVAC SEO.

Blogging gives customers more reason to visit your site and lets you establish yourself as an expert.

Rather than creating sales pages, you'll be writing educational blog posts that are truly helpful to potential customers.

For example, you might write, '5 Tips for Choosing Your Next AC Unit', and share your expert knowledge on the topic. Readers will be grateful for your help and impressed by your expertise, making them more likely to hire you.

You'll also be able to optimize blog posts for any keyword you like, which should massively boost traffic, even for niche terms.

Be sure to add a compelling call to action at the end of each blog post, which could be something like, "Call Cool Care Heating & Air heating repair for a free quote today!"

Once you've got your reader's attention, you need to make sure there's a reason for them to get in touch with you.

5. Add Your Business to Relevant Directories

Building backlinks is a great way to boost your SEO without spending too much time or energy.

Adding your company to local directories is a really easy way to increase your ranking, and makes it more likely that customers will find your site.

Be sure to add your site to relevant directories only, and focus on the bigger-name sites if you can. The higher the domain authority of the site that links to you, the bigger the boost you'll receive.

Spend an afternoon adding your site to directories, and you'll soon be reaping the benefits.

6. Make Your Site Mobile Friendly

When looking for local services like HVAC, many people will be using mobile phones or tablets.

If your site only works on desktop, you're in big trouble.

Having a site which isn't mobile-friendly will infuriate users, lower your search engine ranking, and make it harder to drive leads.

Most site building applications make it easy for you to choose themes which automatically optimize your site for mobile, meaning that you don't have to do any work - images, text, and navigation bars are resized for you.

If your site was created by a web designer, look into having them update the site so that it's mobile-friendly. Once your site is finished, be sure to test it on a wide range of devices, and look out for any issues.

With mobile internet searches becoming more and more common, you simply can't afford not to have a mobile-friendly website.

Why Bother With HVAC SEO?

Have you spent time and money creating an awesome website to advertise your HVAC services?

That's great, but it's worthless if you don't have any visitors.

Spending time on your HVAC SEO strategy is the best way to boost your online presence, increase traffic, and drive more leads. Improving your SEO doesn't have to be time-consuming or expensive, and all of the tips above are suitable for complete beginners.

Start spending an hour a week on SEO, and you might be amazed by the results you see. Want more expert search marketing tips? Spend more time on our website!

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:49:13 PM

by Robert Clough

Looking for effective ways to market your medical practice? Then don't miss this article. Here you'll find 10 medical marketing strategies that work.


Finding it difficult to attract new patients?

Are you doing everything you can to market your medical practice?

It can be difficult to keep a steady stream of new patients coming in if you've been letting your marketing fall by the wayside. If you're trying to market your practice, it's important that you put your focus in the right places.

Below we'll look at the best medical marketing strategies and will tell you everything you need to know to market your practice effectively.

1. Professional Blogs & Websites

The best way to market your medical practice is to have a professional website. You should also have a well-maintained blog that is filled with valuable information.

It's not enough to simply build a website and forget about it. You need to have plenty of relevant and useful content on your site in order to draw new patients in. You should also make sure that you've done everything you can to improve the content you post so that search engines will find your website.

Learn about search engine optimization (SEO) and add relevant keywords to your website. This will help you get more referrals from Google and other search engines.

2. Connecting Through Social Media

The next thing you need to do to market your practice is to create and maintain active social media accounts.

At the minimum, you should post regular, engaging content to Facebook and Twitter. If possible, try to determine which social media channels your potential patients use the most.

Social media is a great place to post links to your blog posts, share a photo, or ask your patients questions. Also, let followers know if you have a special deal going on.

By posting quality content, you will begin to strengthen your relationship with current patients. You'll also start attracting new ones as well.

3. Mobile Marketing Tactics

More people are using mobile phones these days than ever before. When searching for local services and businesses many people only use their smartphone. Many potential patients will never even view your website on a desktop computer.

Because of this, it's important that you do your best to reach mobile users. Mobile marketing tactics, if done right, are highly effective. Mobile marketing is great for getting new patients and reconnecting with current clients.

Additionally, it's also a great idea to invest in additional customer service tools for mobile users.

You may try using an after-hours Doctors answering service to make sure your potential customers can always get assistance or set up an appointment, even when you're not available.

4. Highly Targeted Email Marketing

Email marketing is hardly new. However, it remains one of the best strategies for marketing your medical practice. Email marketing has a very good conversion rate and is a great strategy for keeping your practice at the top of a patient's mind.

When a new patient comes in for a visit, make sure to collect their emails. You can then interact with these patients regularly by using targeted email campaigns. Consider sending a monthly or weekly email newsletter.

An email campaign is great for offering special deals and referral discounts, or simply telling patients about a new blog post.

5. PPC (Pay-Per-Click) Advertising Campaigns

While you may have considered traditional advertising channels before, you may have decided that they're too costly to work for you. That's where PPC advertising comes in.

PPC allows you to advertise on popular digital channels such as Google, Bing, or Facebook. A great benefit of PPC is that unlike a billboard or newspaper ad, you can be much more targeted. You'll be able to target potential patients based on their search terms, age range, current needs, and demographics.

Additionally, you'll only have to pay for each click to your site or offer. As a result, PPC can be a very cost-effective type of advertising that is great for getting new patients into your medical practice.

6. Reaching Out to the Professionals

Another great medical marketing strategy is to leverage your relationships with other professionals. There are several ways to connect with journalists and industry publications, for example.

Websites such as "Help a Reporter Out" can be a great way to gain access to media queries and is a great place to pitch news stories.

Another great idea is to start contributing to industry publications. Look for opportunities to write pieces for medical journals based on your experiences or expertise.

Using these tactics can be a great way to strengthen your credibility and bring in new patients at the same time.

7. Using Online Profiles

Another easy way you can gain a little more traction and market your practice is to make use of online industry marketplaces.

Putting up a profile on directories such as the WebMD Physician Directory can help potential patients find you. Add your profile to some of these sites and fill in your experience, credentials, and practice details.

Using these directories can be a great way to get new business. Many potential patients look for reliable medical professionals through these sites.

8. Collecting Patient Reviews

It's a bad idea to ignore the importance of online reviews and testimonials. Instead, you should look for ways to leverage these online reviews and use them as a form of social proof.

Many websites such as Yelp, Google, and Facebook, allow users to leave reviews on any type of local business or practice. Whenever possible, you should be encouraging your patients to leave reviews for you online.

Once you have several good reviews across the web, don't be shy about linking to them. Place a link to your Yelp or Google reviews on your website for potential patients to see.

9. Mastering the Art of Referrals

Similarly to the previous point, another great way to use social proof to your advantage is to start asking your current patients to refer you to their friends an family.

Consider offering current patients a small discount if they refer a new patient to your office. Ask your social media followers and your email newsletter subscribers to send you referrals. In exchange, offer to give them a small discount on their next visit.

Once you've mastered the art of getting referrals, you may be surprised at just how well it works in getting new patients into your clinic.

10. Don't Forget About Offline Medical Marketing

Online medical marketing strategies can be highly effective in our modern age. However, traditional offline marketing methods are still very useful as well. Look for ways that you can use physical items and promotional materials to attract new customers.

This may mean creating a care package to send to potential patients that includes a brochure and a few free promotional items such as pens and magnets.

If done right, traditional TV, magazine, and print ads can be effective as well. Just make sure that you fully know who your target audience is and that you know the right place to reach them.

Final Thoughts

When you start looking for great medical marketing strategies, there is no shortage of great options. By using some of the strategies above you may soon have more patients than you know what to do with. You may find that you're booked out for a long time to come.

Looking for ways to boost your online presence and attract more patients to your practice? Check out our list of SEO tools to start making the most of your website and blog.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018 2:18:59 AM

by Robert Clough

Guaranteed SEO Tips to Use for Promotion

Using SEO is a beneficial way to promote any product of your business. Check out this article on guaranteed SEO solutions to try for your business!

These days, you can't forget SEO. The world of e-commerce is simply too competitive. The same goes for promoting medical software.

To compete and successfully promote your software, you need to come up with a guaranteed SEO strategy.


What Is SEO?

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is a process by which web developers influence search engines. The goal is to increase search engine rank so the optimized pages appear in search engines' top results.

After all, consumers rarely go to the second page of results. In fact, few scroll beyond the first few results.

So a guaranteed SEO strategy is a must.

Guaranteed SEO Tips

Thankfully, SEO is a multi-faceted process. There are several ways you can create a guaranteed SEO strategy.

Let's review the most popular and effective methods below.

Create Original, High-Quality Content

Original, high-quality content is arguably the most important SEO tactic.

Consumers use search engines because they are in need of information. Site content contains that information.

You must ensure your site contains only original, high-quality content for a number of reasons.

First, content that is of high quality is credible. It shows that you know what you're talking about.

Consumers want businesses that are legitimate and know their trade.

After all, the Internet is a breeding ground for scams.

Second, e-commerce is very much a niche-driven market. Consumers are on the look-out for something specific rather than general.

For that reason, your content needs to be original. General topics are covered on just about every site. Consumers won't sift through all of those sites to find yours.

If you create something original, though, you stand out.

Optimize Everything, Not Just Your Content

Many business owners and first-time web developers think that search engine optimization is limited to content. It's not.

Search engine bots crawl every readable portion of a website. Therefore, all of those portions need to be optimized as well.

Headers and page titles should be optimized as should URL slugs.

Additionally, you should optimize your pages' meta descriptions.

Those who are new to SEO likely have never heard of meta descriptions. Meta descriptions are page summaries that appear on search engine results pages (SERPs).

Meta descriptions aren't seen on the actual pages. If a page doesn't have one, search engines display a preview of the page's content instead. For that reason, meta descriptions are easily overlooked.

Another portion to optimize is alternative page text. Alternative page text appears in lieu of your images if they should happen not to load.

Feature Reviews

Reviews have a huge impact on the marketing world. In fact, 88% of consumers read reviews prior to making a decision.

As such, you should include reviews of your products and services on your website. The most effective places are your product and service pages. Another effective place is a separate page dedicated to reviews.

Many search engines display reviews when consumers search for reviews of a company. These reviews are often denoted as five stars. As such, you should consider including a five-star ranking system on your website.

Build Links

Search engines take links into account while ranking sites. Links do a few different things for your guaranteed SEO strategy.

First, well-chosen, well-placed links lend your website credibility.

All links should be credible. They should contain high-quality content. They should also lead to a reputable, trustworthy site.

Additionally, all links should be relevant to your content. Specifically, they should be relevant to the word or phrase in your content to which you've attached them.

Link building also serves as a networking opportunity. Many sites that find themselves featured on other sites will, in return, feature those sites.

Keyword Usage

Keywords are the words and phrases that consumers use to find information on websites. They, along with consumers' geographic locations, are what search engines use to rank websites according to relevance.

For that reason, it is imperative that you incorporate these keywords into your website.

Keywords can be difficult to determine. Thankfully, there are a variety of online tools that you can use to identify the keywords most beneficial to your business's website. One such keyword finder is KWFinder.com.

It is important to keep in mind that many keyword finders require some sort of investment.

Whether it's a subscription or a purchase, you should be willing to pay. The return on investment you receive will be well worth the money spent.

Tailor Your Content To Your Target Audience

Every brand and product has a target audience.

A target audience is the consumer demographic at whom your brand or product is aimed.

Identifying this audience is key as it helps you make important marketing decisions.

Making poor, uninformed decisions results in loss of time and resources.

Once you have identified your target audience, you should customize all of your content to appeal to that audience. Word choices and sales pitches should reflect the needs and desires of the audience.

For example, let's say you find that most of your medical software's consumers are doctors. So they can find out more about your software, you'd word your content so that it speaks directly to those doctors. You'd use phrases such as "your patients" and "your staff."

Utilize Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a powerful tool available to those who have a Google account.

Google Analytics works by keeping track of your website's metrics. It notes the demographics of those who visit your website. It also records the time and day of their visit to your website.

Additionally, the tool displays where those visitors came from.

By using Google Analytics, you can analyze your site's traffic. You'll be able to determine who is interested in your site, why, and when they're most likely to arrive.

Tracking and analyzing traffic metrics is another important part of search engine optimization. Those metrics help you make smart decisions concerning your content and guaranteed SEO strategy.

Need More SEO Resources? Check Us Out!

At Search Engine Guide, we specialize in providing small businesses with search engine marketing resources. From content to link building to social media to online reputation management, we cover it all at Search Engine Guide.

For more information on search engine optimization, check out our SEO blog reel!

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Monday, January 15, 2018 7:23:46 PM

by Robert Clough

If you want your fitness business to succeed, you need a strong marketing plan. Here's why SEO is essential to any effective fitness marketing strategy.

It's never been easier to start a fitness related business... but it's never been harder to run a successful one. So what separates the overnight success from the fly-by-night flops? The fitness marketing tactics you use.

The demand is certainly there. Fitness is a massive part of most people's lives. Proximity to the gym can actually be a deciding factor on whether or not somebody pulls the trigger on a new job or even a new house.

Want to know how to tap into that type of loyalty? Keep reading.


Think Local

Local search engine optimization is the biggest driver of fitness and marketing success, whether you're trying to succeed as a new gym, personal trainer, or dietitian. Period.

You're competing against local businesses. And simply put, when somebody Googles your specialty in your area, you want them to find your business.

That's such a simple concept, but we could write plenty of blogs about the art and science behind local SEO for fitness marketing.

But, if you want to immediately put yourself ahead of half of the businesses out there, make sure your Google My Business listing is up to date. This is massively important for your local SEO ranking.

Incredibly, half of the businesses out there today ignore this very simple step... This simple step that takes five minutes, is completely free and can make or break your success.

So put yourself in the right half, and make sure Google has your most up-to-date information. This includes your address (or addresses if you have multiple locations) business hours, a complete list of services, and photos.

Your Customers are Mobile, So Make Sure You Are

This is probably the second most important fitness marketing trend.

Not too long ago, global mobile traffic exceeded global desktop traffic on the Internet.

In response, Google announced that they are now looking at your mobile site first before they look at your desktop site when indexing and assessing your SEO value.

This means you are absolutely required to have a mobile site, or a responsive website, to meet this demand. Otherwise, you are a gift wrapping web traffic to your competitors who are mobile optimized.

And it's not enough to simply have a good mobile site, you need to have a seamless one. Over 60 percent of people surveyed said they will leave a mobile site if they encounter any problems.

And 40 percent of those people said they will immediately go to the competitors' site.

Don't Use Your Blog to Sell Things. Or Yourself

You might see your blog as an opportunity to tell people how amazing you are, or to promote your incredible services. You're right, but the salesmanship has to be far more passive.

People hate to be sold things in blogs. If somebody clicks on your link and makes it all the way to your blog, they want to be enlightened, entertained, or educated. Not sold.

Find ways to raise awareness of your great offerings, without a "hard sell."

For example, let's say you want to raise awareness of a great new bike that you're selling. The first instinct may be to run a headline like "Five Reasons You Need to Buy the XYZ Exercise Bicycle."

That's a bit too much of the hard-sell. You might try something a little bit more impartial, such as "10 Best Spin Bikes - Our Spinning Bike Reviews for 2017."

Don't Try to Sell Anything on Social Media Either

Use the same mentality that we just covered in blogging. People don't want to be sold anything when they're on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. That doesn't mean your posts cannot lead to a sale. But it's rarely going to come from a hard sell.

The lone exception may be fitness apparel. Lots of vibrant pictures of people exercising in your awesome apparel will be the best way to sell it.

But let's say you're selling expertise instead of a tangible good. When you use social media, your expertise is going to be in high demand. People will have lots of questions for you about their diet and their workout regiment.

Sell this expertise by having real conversations with real people. Forget the sales pitch. If you actually help people, they will want to hire you. They will also want to recommend you to their friends and family.

Build Links. Don't Buy Them

Your link building strategy is the final missing piece of your fitness marketing.

In the old days, you could've just purchased a bunch of outbound links with an exact match keyword anchor text, and your website just might have seen some traction because of it. But the Google Penguin update changed all of that.

Now, Google wants you to have organic links to relevant sites. So you can't just get a blank on an unrelated site, with the exact anchor text "best gym Springfield."

These little link farms are seen as spam, and Google will actually punish your side if you have these links out there.

But the good news is, this algorithm works in real time. If you take down these spammy links, you'll be rewarded almost immediately.

Focus on getting legit and quality links from real sources. Your best bets are online reviews, news coverage, and guest posts.

Learn How to Own Your Fitness Marketing... For Free!

We keep up on all the latest marketings trends so you don't have to.

We pride ourselves on providing our readers with the best and most up-to-date search engine optimization advice. We can sort out the fads from the legit trends, and show you where you need to do to succeed right now.

You can stay in the now by subscribing to our newsletter.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Monday, January 15, 2018 7:15:20 PM

by Robert Clough

Do you want to grow your medical practice or healthcare supply company? Here's 5 reasons you need healthcare digital marketing to get more customers or clients.

The use of healthcare digital marketing has increased in the last few years. This is due to the adoption of internet devices by patients and physicians alike. 72 percent of internet users got health information online in 2013.

In fact, digital marketing is fast overtaking the traditional form of marketing. When you combine these facts, the need for healthcare digital marketing becomes obvious.

If you are not tech savvy, the most obvious question here is;

What is Healthcare Digital Marketing?

It is the application of digital marketing strategies in the healthcare industry. Digital marketing strategies include;

It is an excellent way of marketing because it is cheaper than the traditional form. The staggering number of internet users makes it practical too. The opportunities are abundant; it would be unwise not to use it.


Why You Need Digital Healthcare Marketing to Grow Your Business

Here are five reasons you need healthcare digital marketing to grow your business.

Your Patients Are Now Online

The birth of the internet has changed how patients find their healthcare provider. Social media platforms make it even easier. An analysis shows that online information affects the way consumers perceive their health.

Patients are using internet devices more and spending more time online. As such, a healthcare provider would be a mistake not to take advantage of it. No matter your specialization, using healthcare digital marketing is vital for growth.

An impressive online image is appealing to both existing and potential patients.

Cheaper Way to Reach the Right Audience

The modern-day marketing is more precise than it used to be. Your target audience determines the strategy used.

Basically, for every product or service, a customer is willing to pay good money for it. Customers would preferably buy healthcare products like a Green Trousers Molift Smart 150 online than work into a store. The real question is, how do you find these potential customers?

There are plenty of social media platforms with audience scattered across the globe. Pick specific people based on their interests, demographics and more. In that way, you can advertise to the right customers every time. It's an efficient way to market your business.

If your healthcare business is small and you have no marketing budget, no worries. Digital marketing is the way to go. The more prominent corporation may hold the advantage in traditional marketing.

However, digital marketing levels the playing field. It doesn't matter how small you are; online presence is all you need.

Access to relevant digital marketing tool will give you a global reach at a low price. In comparison, you won't get far using traditional tools such as;

  • Television

  • Newspapers

  • Banners and Posters

The list shows conventional marketing channels. Digital marketing is taking over from these channels because they've proven to be more efficient.

It's a Good Way to Interact with Patients

Healthcare digital marketing helps you stay on top of patients' evolving demands. It allows you to upgrade your product as their preferences change. Here is how that happens.

Interacting with your patients through social media ensures that you know what they're interested in. Through their expressed interests, you'll know their likes and dislikes. Efficient marketing is built on information like these. They pave the way for future offerings.

Apart from interaction, you'll also have the opportunity of engaging your client. Unlike traditional marketing which is one-sided, digital marketing is a two ways communication. Hear the opinion of customers through the use of social media platforms. They get to give you feedback about your healthcare product or service.

What do you get from this? Better product and services, and a stronger healthcare digital marketing plan.

Grow Your Online Reputation

A good branding is a necessity for the long-term growth of any business. It is the perception of the patients about your business. As such, it takes years to build. That was before the use of digital marketing. Now, small healthcare businesses are in a position to do just that.

The use of social media and targeted ads helps you to create an excellent experience for clients. Combine this with interactions and engagements; you are on your way towards building a strong brand.

Getting consistent traffic on your practice website is an excellent way of doing this. Here are some ideas for getting that traffic;

  • Post relevant content on your social media page

  • Address clients' worries in the comment section of your website

  • Guest post articles on authority websites and blogs

  • Join existing conversations on Quora, LinkedIn, and Twitter

The idea here is to leverage social media, your website content, guest posts, and Q&A forums to win influence, and improve your online reputation.

Other Healthcare Businesses Are Doing It

That's right; your competitors are already using it. Ignoring digital marketing in this digital world is a sure way of killing your business. A review of the marketing strategies of your competitors will tell you how many have opted for digital marketing.

You are wondering, wouldn't that be repeating what others are doing?

Yes, it is. However, the key is for you to do it differently. Do it better than they did it. There are various options to choose from when employing digital marketing. Some of them are already outlined above.

Don't be afraid to experiment a little. Combine these options to market your healthcare business and showcase you're the unique services you offer. The plan has to fit your ideology and reflect your goals. Don't forget to keep everything within your budget.

Wrapping Things Up

Growth is necessary for success in any healthcare business. This growth can be achieved by building a strong brand for your business and increasing your customer base. Using an outdated marketing technique will only impede the progress. This is why you need healthcare digital marketing.

It's a cheap way of getting a global reach. And you can provide better products and services by engaging your clients. Moreover, all your competitors are already using it, don't get left out.

Are you are interested in learning more about using healthcare digital marketing to grow your business? Search Engine Guide provides a robust resource for your online healthcare marketing needs. Click here to enjoy our search engine optimization (SEO) tools.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Friday, January 12, 2018 2:07:02 AM

by Robert Clough

Do you have a new product that you're trying to market? Here are 7 benefits of using a sales sample to promote a product and grow your customer base.

Have you ever been almost ready to buy a product, but wished you could try it first?

This is why some people always try on clothes in the store, or what makes others ask for samples at an ice cream shop.

Unfortunately, not everything is as easy to sample.

Still, using a sales sample strategy for your next new product can be more effective than you might expect.

Some people have the misconception that sampling is outdated in comparison to digital trends like social media marketing and lead generation strategies.

This guerrilla strategy is not something to overlook, though.

Here are seven benefits of using a sales sample marketing approach for a new product.


1. Increase Exposure

You may already have a strong following of loyal users. These people know and love your brand, often being the first ones to take advantage of a new offer.

What about everyone else who is part of your potential audience?

This is a group of people that fit your brand personas and target market - they just haven't found you yet.

A sales sample might be the trick you need to get their attention.

When you offer samples, you become more accessible to a large number of people.

Some potential users might be hesitant to make a purchase right now. Others might be convinced your competitor is better.

Either way, a sample can change their mind.

It shows the value of your product to those who are a bit frugal while getting your foot in the door with consumers who have historically used something else.

If anything, it gets your brand in front of more people, which makes you easier to recognize when they come across you again.

2. Get Feedback

When you put a product in the hands of the people, you're able to better understand their reaction.

This is often much quicker, and more effective, than waiting for product reviews.

It tells you what is working and what isn't right away.

Plus, having a conversation with consumers while they sample might give you insights you hadn't yet thought of.

This could be anything from your digital printing flexible packaging and presentation to the function of your product.

3. Test a New Product

Speaking of getting feedback, consider using a sales sample before you decide on the final version of your product.

Audience opinions can help you do A/B testing in an organic manner.

Instead of running test groups and relying on research, you can get real-time results just from seeing how samples perform against one another.

When users respond better to one version over the other, you have your answer on which direction to take.

4. Lower Your Spending

Sometimes, users won't love a new product as much as you think they would.

This is a hard mistake to correct after you've already ordered a big number of units. Not to mention the distribution contracts and marketing plans you've prepared.

Thankfully, sampling can keep you from spending more than you need to on a new product.

If you see users aren't responding as expected, you can go back to the drawing board before placing a big order. This is an extra step in the research and development process, but it saves you a significant amount of money in the long-run.

5. Hook Consumers

Although sampling is a great way to prevent a major loss, it is also an effective tool to get your audience excited.

Sampling gives users a hint of what they can expect from your new product launch.

When they respond positively, they won't be able to wait to get their hands on the real thing.

This goes for current consumers and new potential customers as well.

The more you put your product in their hands, the stronger their connection will be to it. Then, when the opportunity comes to make a purchase, many will be more inclined to buy.

6. Stand Out Among Competitors

One of the reasons a sales sample can create more sales overall is because it makes you memorable.

These days, almost everyone is on social media or building an SEO strategy. Users get an information overload while they scroll their screens or watch commercials TV.

But, when people can interact with your product, they will remember it much better than they would after seeing an ad.

Sampling creates a unique experience.

It is something users can taste or feel or operate, depending on your product. This stimulates the senses and gets users more engaged.

Plus, sampling better represents your offer.

7. Research Your Market

In addition to how well sampling can represent you to your consumers, it works the other way around, too.

When you make the effort to go out and connect with your audience, you can better understand them. This creates a more accurate idea of who your target market really is.

Such an understanding can improve your product performance beyond one launch.

It helps you move forward with everything you do, from research and development to marketing to even pricing. These have a lasting effect on the growth and success of your brand overall.

It also goes beyond the numbers.

Users will be able to tell if you've made changes in your production cycle. They will likely become more responsive to your attention to detail and more loyal to your brand as well.

The Sales Sample Approach and Other Marketing Tricks

At the end of the day, sales sampling is all about reaching users beyond traditional advertisements.

It allows you to create real-life interactions beyond what a screen or print media can do.

This is not to discredit what online strategies can do, though. For the best sales sample results, use a mix of digital and in-person interactions to boost sales.

In fact, there are some digital takeaways you can turn into strategies for the physical world.

Click here for five SEO strategies that translate well in real-life.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

Thursday, January 11, 2018 11:08:13 PM

by Robert Clough

Have you been using your tech skills to build a steady flow of followers on Facebook? Now, learn how to convert Facebook followers into loyal customers.


Are you frustrated by a lack of leads from your Facebook presence? Or, are you unsure of how to convert Facebook followers into paying customers?

It's amazing: There are over 50 million businesses currently on Facebook. But a very small percentage of them are actually running their page the right way or seeing a return on their investment.

The rest are like you. Scratching their heads and wondering what they're doing wrong.

But the good news is a few simple strategic changes can unplug your sales funnel, and turn your Facebook into your best salesman.

1. Don't Put all of Your Customers in One Bucket

No matter why type of business you're in, you probably have more than one market segment of customers. They likely come from different walks of life, have different income levels and different careers.

Facebook's ability to let you segment the target audiences you run your ads to is absolutely unmatched.

If you want to focus on male teachers in any city, you can target advertisements to just that market. With all this customization, why would you send everyone the exact same message?

Use unique messaging, images and headlines for each type of ad you sent out. This is going to garner you far better results and help you convert Facebook followers more effectively. You have the opportunity to tap into the unique pain-points for each would-be buyer.

So, take full advantage of it.

2. Don't Use Static Creative, or Expect Other Creative to Work Here

As we've mentioned, you can drill down into incredibly specific information about your customers. So don't go to market with a one-size-fits-all approach when trying to convert Facebook followers into customers.

Too many businesses will take the creative from another medium (like a print ad, or PPC ad) and try to recycle it here. This very rarely works. And if it does work, it's still not going to perform as well as a uniquely tailored message.

Use a dynamic approach to your ads, not a static one. Facebook gives you the ability to measure the success of each respective campaign. Use these insights to see what's working and what's not.

Try running multiple versions of the same creative with alternate headlines, call-to-actions, and images. Very few campaigns will perform well the first time. Most need to be measured and tweaked.

3. Be There When You're Called and be "Very Responsive"

Facebook's business messaging can be a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, it gives each would-be customer a direct line to your business for their questions and inquiries.

However, that comes with a whole new level of expectations. Because the average customer expects a reply within 24 hours of messaging a business. In fact, 42% of customer service responses on Facebook happen during the first 60 minutes.

Let's say you offer no credit check installment loans. Your customers have a lot of other loan options out there. If they message you, they're expressing a desire to borrow from you ASAP.

But if they have to wait, they'll find someone else.

And your level of customer care is going to be right there next to the "Message" button on Facebook. If you get back to people quickly, you'll be blessed with the magic words "Very responsive" on your listing.

How does one earn these coveted words? According to Facebook, your Page must have achieved both of these milestones over the last 7 days:

  • A response rate of 90%

  • A response time of 15 minutes

Both of these metrics are based on the first reply in a conversation. Your follow-up messages in the same conversation that day are not a factor.

So if you don't reply to your customer's message, they will likely go right to your competitors.

4. Don't Ask for Likes -- Earn Them

Facebook is now cracking down on businesses and organizations who are aggressively asking for Facebook Likes by, "demoting individual posts from people and Pages that use engagement bait."

This is a good thing. Because you shouldn't be asking for Likes anyways. If you give people a reason to Like you, the numbers will follow.

You need to offer the customer something other than your presence. All day long, customers are bombarded with digital ads from emails, texts, and pop-ups, asking them to do any number of things.

And here is one universal truth for all of these methods: People don't respond to ads. They respond to stories and offers. Those two things create an emotional compulsion to hit that Like button. Anything else disappears into the crowd.

You need to entertain, educate, or engage your customers' emotions to get them to buy from you, or Like your page. Or you need an irresistible offer like a month of free service or 25% off your first order.

5. Never Stand Between a Customer and a Sale

it's amazing how many businesses get in the way of their own success. They create way too many steps when trying to convert Facebook followers into paying customers.

Use Facebook's tools to build your store, and allow people to purchase right from Facebook.

Because the more clicks you put on the way to a purchase, the more people are going to fall off along the way.

If you are going to have people leave your Facebook page to make a buy, make it as smooth and as quick as humanly possible. You cannot have any surprises along the way.

Let's say you run a Facebook ad that promises a free iPad for new customers. But your user clicks the ad and arrives on a landing page that makes no mention of the iPad.

You can kiss that user goodbye because they now feel they're either in the wrong place, or a bait-and-switch has taken place.

So make sure your messaging and copy are clear about the offer at every stage of the sale, and the visual elements are always consistent, so the user never feels like they've strayed from where they should be.

Learn Social Media Marketing and How to Convert Facebook Followers

We keep up on all the latest marketings trends so you don't have to.

We pride ourselves on providing our readers with the best and most up-to-date search engine optimization advice and insights for today's ever-changing marketplace.

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Thursday, January 11, 2018 10:08:10 PM

by Robert Clough

If you're just getting started in the realm of new media marketing it can be a little intimidating. Here's 10 tips to make it a little easier.

As more businesses turn to the digital space, people may think that success will come more easily. In reality, 90% of new online businesses fail within four months of opening! If you're going to start an online business, you must understand the importance of new media marketing.

What is New Media Marketing?

New media marketing is a combination of tactics all working toward a common goal: building traffic and conversions for your website.

Whereas traditional (outbound) marketing focused on chasing the customer, new (inbound) marketing efforts bring the customers to you.

Tools such as social media, search engine marketing, email newsletters, and more will all fall under the new media umbrella.

Older methods such as newspaper ads, postcards, and phone calls may build exposure, but they don't do a good job of instilling confidence in your company.

Now that so much research is done online, it makes sense to create and share content where people are most likely to look.

10 Must-Try Marketing Tactics

To help you in this process, we've identified 10 tips that can get you started. It may seem overwhelming at first, but by breaking everything down into individual parts, you'll have an easier time keeping track of each step.


1. Choose a strong domain

When creating an online business, one of the first steps is choosing a domain name.

A good domain name will describe your business or market in some way. It should also be easy to remember and spell -- otherwise you could lose traffic to other companies with similar websites.

A good domain name is short, simple, and memorable.

2. Identify your keywords

Keywords help customers find you during online searches. Think about what your company offers that people will be looking for.

You'll likely be able to come up with a few off the top of your head, but remember that different people search for things differently. There are a number of iterations for each possible term you come up with.

Identify your core keywords and then think of other options that you can incorporate into your website content and marketing materials.

3. Create helpful content

Keywords will only take you so far -- you have to know how to work them into your content!

Think about frequently asked questions in your industry and create blogs and web pages that provide helpful answers.

Chances are, people will type their questions into Google and other search engines, so you want to have content that answers them.

4. Identify link building opportunities

You want to build a website that Google trusts, right? Since the search engines already trust many large sites, use that to your advantage.

Create a link building strategy in which you identify authoritative websites in your industry, and think of ways to get your website link onto their pages.

Guest blogs are a great way of doing this. You can also take a look at industry lists and see where your link can fit in.

5. Consider paid ads on search engines

While organic traffic is ideal, there are many benefits to paid search engine ads.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising has become very popular lately because it drives results!

Whereas your organic search engine optimization (SEO) strategy might get you on the first page of Google, it can take months to do so.

A PPC campaign can get you there almost immediately since you're paying for that placement.

The main drawback, of course, is that it's paid. If you don't plan your ads carefully or fully understand the process, you could lose thousands of dollars and see very few results.

Be sure to educate yourself on the top PPC mistakes and advise so you're not wasting your budget.

6. Create a newsletter

Once you've gotten people to your website, don't let them go! Keep them engaged by encouraging them to subscribe to an email newsletter.

This will allow you to stay top-of-mind, so that even if someone isn't ready to buy now, they'll have an easy way to remember you later on.

Create interesting content that people will want to click through to read. Be sure to include links back to your product pages so readers know where to find more information.

7. Get social

81% of the US population is on social media. If you're not there, you're missing out!

People may not go on Facebook or Twitter with an intent to buy, but it's a great place to make an introduction.

Post regular updates about topics related to your field. Remember that character limits favor shorter posts, and images and videos are key to getting seen by anyone.

8. Transform written content into videos

Remember how we said videos help you get seen online? You don't need a film degree to create video content for your new media marketing plan.

Look at the new marketing materials you already have, and try to create slideshows that can be turned into videos.

People often prefer to read captions rather than listen to a narrator anyway, so use that to your advantage.

9. Track and manage your online reputation

As you get more popular, you'll find that people have more to say about you. This can be both a good thing and a bad thing.

Regularly search for your company name online and see what people are saying about you.

There are a few tools that will make this easier, so do some research to find what works best for you.

If you're finding a lot of negative reviews, you can respond (calmly) to address and remedy the situation. Just don't make it worse by getting defensive or aggressive in your reply.

This is also an opportunity to improve your processes and customer service by identifying current problems.

10. Get your business offline

While your business may get its start online, eventually it helps to have a physical presence.

If you're among the 10% of businesses that find success after the first four months, you'll likely see some growth potential.

A Level Office space can provide you with a physical location without the added stress of property management. For smaller companies, this is a major benefit.

But, that's a step to consider in the future. For now, your biggest challenge will be building and scaling your business for growth.

A Quick Bonus Tip: Don't Neglect Old Media Strategies!

Public relations may seem like an outdated strategy, but it actually serves a role in new media marketing.

Press releases, in particular, can provide helpful backlinks since they're often published by well-known news publications online.

And by engaging with industry reporters, you have a better chance of getting good news coverage for your company announcements.

To learn more about new media marketing and how to get the most from your online business, be sure to subscribe to our Search Engine Marketing Newsletter.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

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