Want to help boost your website or landing page to the top of Google, Yahoo! and Bing search engines? Here are some tips that you can follow in order to help your chances of being on the first page of the results.
1. Conduct keyword research. Before you even begin your search engine optimization (SEO) campaign it’s important to figure out which keywords will be best for your business. Use tools like the Google Wonder Wheel to find suggestions or consult an expert to help you find the most effective keywords.
2. Choose your links wisely. If you’re familiar with SEO, you know that the more links that point back to your website, the higher the site will be in the search rankings. However, not all links are highly effective. Only quality links will help boost your rankings. So use Alexa.com to check link popularity and page rank before you submit your link to a directory or another site that you think would be beneficial.
3. Update your site regularly. Search engines see fresh content as more relevant and therefore award it with higher rankings. This means you should update your website and listing with new content as often as possible.
4. Spy on your competition. Check out what your successful competitors are doing and do it for your own company. If they’re using certain categories in their Google Places page that seem to be beneficial, then you should add those categories to your company page. If your competitors are using Facebook and Twitter to engage their customers, you should be doing the same.
5. Use location based keywords. Using keywords like “hair salon long beach” will help people in your local area find you in the search results as well as lower the competition for certain keywords so you are more likely to be found on the first page.
Stay tuned for more quick tips on how to optimize your website or landing page for search engines.
Some business owners are squeamish when it comes to working with a local search engine optimization (SEO) company. This is mostly due to the unfortunate truth that many local SEO firms are scams or use unaccepted SEO techniques. However, not all SEO companies are out to get you and although many SEO tactics and tools are free to use, getting to the top of the search engine rankings takes extensive time and knowledge. Here are the pros and cons of both utilizing the services of a top local SEO provider or taking a DIY approach.
- Most tools used for SEO are free and there’s plenty of free information about improving SEO on the Web. So to do local SEO for your company, it would essentially cost for your website and time.
- It’s a great learning experience. Teaching yourself this valuable skill is advantageous and will continue to be as your business grows.
- DIY SEO is extremely time consuming. Achieving top rankings on Google and other search engines can be tedious and a lot of hard work.
- There’s a lot of misinformation available on the Web and if you aren’t sure which sources are reliable, you could end up hurting your rankings or wasting your time and effort on an SEO campaign that doesn’t work.
- Carrying out an SEO strategry is a full-time job. SEO is a long-term growth strategy and a huge commitment. It requires a lot of research, repetition and as time passes it only gets more complex.
- Building an effective website or landing page can be expensive. You must pay for web hosting, copy writing, optimization and design.
Professional Local SEO:
- Let the professionals do all the heavy lifting. The hard, time consuming work can be passed off to a professional or company that has the time, tools and knowledge to get the job done efficiently. You can throw some money at the situation and leave the worries and stress to someone else.
- Results come faster. Since an SEO company’s sole purpose is to perform Internet marketing and search engine optimization for companies like yours, they already have systems and tools in place to get started right away. They don’t need to teach themselves SEO first like you would have to do. Since they’re experts, they know all the best techniques and have the necessary connections to get you ranking as quick as possible.
- Internet marketing is constantly changing. It’s hard to keep up with the ever-changing world of SEO. Search engines are always changing their algorithms and as a business owner, it would be hard to keep up with your employees, business location, customers and the ever-changing Internet marketing industry. Chances are, you don’t have the time. A professional can put full attention on the search engine optimization of your business so you get maximum results.
- It can be hard to find a legitimate company to work with. There are many unreliable black hat SEO companies out there, you must be tough when deciding who to work with in order to avoid the Google black list or losing money on less than desirable results. Check out the company’s credentials before deciding to work with them.
- It costs money. Help from a professional costs money. However if your SEO company is doing its job and getting your business found on the first page of the search engines, you will be getting more leads and it will be well worth the money.
When you weigh the pros and cons it’s easy to see that if you have the funds, leaving the local SEO to the professionals is your best option. Although SEO can be done on your own, if you’re inexperienced it can be easy to make a mistake and hurt your rankings or waste your efforts on techniques that don’t really work. When choosing a local SEO provider, be aware of possible black hat SEOs and be sure to gather as much information about the company as possible before agreeing to work with them.
Google Places received a recent facelift that left it with a few noteworthy changes. Although there are no changes in ranking factors, the detail citations are no longer shown and the review results have changed. Here is an overview of the important changes to Google Places.
1. The “Write a review” button is now found in two places. It is also larger and red.
2. Any Google user can now upload a photo to the business listing.
3. Detail references and attributes are not displayed or linked to. However, since rankings appear to be holding steady, the details are most likely still working behind the scenes. It is our speculation that the loss of the detail attributes is only temporary.
4. The reviews found on the listing are only those left by Google users as opposed to ones pulled from Yelp, Citysearch and other review sites Google used to show in results.
The changes to Google Places does not appear to be currently affecting rankings. However, Local Splash will continue to monitor this and report any further findings. For more information, read Google’s statement on the changes to Google Places on this Google Blog.
Screenshot of the changes made to Google Places