The Adster Online Advertising Blog!
As a business owner, you've got a lot on your plate. You're constantly on the go and sometimes, your website is the least of your worries. "When's the last time I even checked in on my website?" you mutter to yourself as you pick up your Tim Hortons double double.
Typically speaking, you get from your website what you've put in. Not adding any content to your site in the past 24 months and wondering why your site sits on page 4 of Google, come now fellow business owner, let's be realistic.
If there was only 2 hours left on this earth and I had to give away my top secret SEO tips to save the universe ... it would be these. Ok, that's a little dramatic, but seriously as a business owner in Edmonton these are 2 strategies I would employ in my online efforts.
Content Calendar & Information Strategy
You know what drives me nuts? Companies that don't update their websites. I recently purchased a new home in a new area of South Edmonton. I was looking for a company to come and do my top soil and landscaping. Of course I do the 'ol stinky webmaster trick and performed a Google search for 'Edmonton Southside Landscaping'.
Result? Given the lack of quality search results and competition, I think I might start my own landscaping business - but that's neither here nor there.
Anyway, the results were pretty atrocious, but moreover the websites looked like they were from 1998 and most hadn't been updated probably since they went live when I was still playing with G.I Joes (I still occasionally play with them, only in 15 minute increments though I swear).
No matter what type of business you have in Edmonton, if you wanna get to the top of the Google heap, you'll need to keep your site updated with fresh, original content. Easier said than done, trust me I know, but it still doesn't change the fact that as business owner in Edmonton running a website, it's your responsibility to keep your site updated.
If you're having a tough time building a content calendar and information strategy, try this out:
What You'll Need:
- Time and an open, creative mind
- Access to a Content Management System or Content Editor
Adster's Recipe for Success:
1. Make a list. Make a BIG list. Write down everything and anything you can think of that your company is offering, doing or events you're attending in the next 6 months. Organizing by 'calendar month' can help keep things streamlined and efficient, and remember, each post doesn't have to be a work of art - but should offer your readers something unique.
2. Automation. If your content management system is as cool as Adster's very own flexCMS, you can automate the creation of your content. If you've set up your content calendar to push content pieces live every 2 weeks, it can make organizational issues a thing of the past and your life a whole lot easier.
3. Social Syndication. I won't spend a lot of time discussing social outlets like Facebook and Twitter because to be honest, if you haven't jumped on the band wagon it might be too little, too late. Either way, it's best practices to share your newly created content on a variety of Social Networks. This is a great inbound linking strategy, and if your content truly offers a unique experience, it might be shared by your friends, colleagues or followers.
Google is constantly shifting the search results to reward those who truly have the 'best' website based on valuable, unique content and a rich user experience..
Backlinks (the good kind)
When we talk about backlinks and linking infrastructure, we're not talking about the $19.99 Bonanza Buffet link special. We're talking about quality backlinks, you know... the kind that ACTUALLY offer value, and ideally provide a meaningful source of qualified site traffic and leads.
It almost feels like a giant no-no to talk about back links now that the 'ever so feared' internet apocalypse Google Penguin era has ended, however backlinks still play a major role in Google's ranking algorithm
Where do you get these mysterious quality backlinks you ask? Well,
What You'll Need:
- Will & Determination
- Way to track potential link partners
- Lots and Lots of Caffeine
Adster's Recipe for Success:
1. Set a 'monthly' link budget (monetary and 'time'). Links cost money. Links cost time. It's a balancing act when building up a quality link portfolio. You'll want to make sure you vary up the anchor text (remember, don't spam poor Google) and vary the pages that the links point to. You don't always need to get a link to point to your home page. Make it relevant, what page SHOULD the link point to. Think like a user, not a search engine.
2. Time for research. Make a list of websites you think you 'deserve' a link from, or who's audience would be well suited to your businesses. Try and find a variety of different link candidates from various sources. Think of it this way, "Does my site deserve to be listed on this blog, directory or media outlet? Would their audience find value in my product or service?" If the answer is yes, write it down or store it somewhere and start building the foundation for your link profile. A really good tip is to check the link profile of your competitors. Are they linked to from some sweet directory or resource that you've never heard of? Chances are, you should probably make an effort to get a link from them as well, especially if your goal is to outrank them.
3. This step can be the trickiest, and more often than not, discourages business owners from obtaining the link. You'll need to send an e-mail, text message or even call your prospective link partner on the phone. Not only that, but you'll need to follow up. No reply to the e-mail you sent? No one picked up the phone? Mark down that you've tried to contact them and schedule a follow up call in a few days. The key to success for quality linking moving into the future is going to be consistency.
Generally speaking, the harder a link is to get, the more powerful it is...