Blog posts and SEO articles on or search engine optimization published by SoftLoom IT Solutions. Responsible SEO marketing company India

10 Incredible Content Creation Tips to Turbo-Charge Your Content Marketing Strategy

Could you characterise what precisely is “High-Quality Content”? All things considered, it can’t be clarified plainly as there are such a large number of methods for composing content and every visitor likes to read different types of content- some like descriptive and some like to read only the highlight points.

Creating quality content that is tempting to the audience out there is the most critical variable in making your website stand out like hot chicks! Considering that there are so many bloggers taking part on the web, it can be a quite a challenge crafting content that has the top notch substance, to the point that’s noteworthy as well as feed the visitor’s needs. Obviously, blogging nowadays is not all that simple and you need to surpass such a large number of obstacles to get on top.

killer content creation tips

Secrets to Creating Killer Content

So here I give you certain insider facts that are not privileged insights but rather hot tips that can make your content and SEO strategy better than average and emerge from the group.

1.Charming Blog Headlines

This is the one that catches a visitor’s eye when he’s going through Google’s search results. Since this is where he is going to begin judging what’s on your site, the headline should interest the visitor, so he clicks on to your site.

Regardless of whether the nature of the content is extraordinary and upgraded to the best, all endeavours go futile if the user is not going to click onto your site/blog.

Other than containing a fascinating feature, it ought to appear rare and if possible, even weird and negative. You can have a go at utilizing numbers, power words (or adjectives) like “important”, “unbelievable”, “fantastic” and trigger words like “what”, “why”, “how” and “when”.

Invite the visitor with a promise and deliver your content based on that promise.

2. An Interesting First Paragraph

Now the visitor has seen that great headline and has clicked into your site. He has begun reading the principal section, the first paragraph.

What he needs there is something that conveys the promise made by that dazzling headline. A few bloggers do the strategy of making astonishing headlines and after that compose a content that is absolutely boring and dull.

The result? It’s an immediate press of the “Back” or “Close” button on the user’s browser. One out of ten individuals look down through an online blog entirely and read the whole article.

After the headline, your duty has increased more. You have to snare the visitor who’s trying to run away from your site with a powerful content that describes in a simple and brief way, what you will be discussing in the coming paragraphs of your blog. This section of your blog is where the visitor figures out if reading this entire content is worth his time and attention and you can’t afford to lose it with boring sentences.

3. Express What You Know Best

Obviously, the matter in your blog ought to be enlightening and fill in the blanks of the user. It should give knowledge into some new regions in the niche which you are blogging/selling on.

It’s best to compose on what you have solid knowledge about. If by chance, which is highly likely, you are composing something new or something that is not your specialty, do an intensive and broad examination on the subject before you write the content.

4. Pass on something special like a story

A story-line always interacts with a reader. Attempt to make a few stories that match with your content in some or the other way. This can catch the user’s psyche and if he or she has gotten some experience like the one in your story, he is intrigued to go further and read more.

5. Pick a Target Audience

Despite the fact that positioning higher on Google is important, it is much more critical that individuals who click on to your site like you and trust you. When they believe you, they will hear whatever you say and take what you bring to the table for them.

Making trust in a vast crowd is not all that simple and I agree it’s a Herculean task. But be sure to particularly address and speak out to each one of the guests who is searching for what you are blogging about or those individuals who are now in the same field as you are in.

Devote all your efforts to offer them the answers to their questions in a proficient and conversational style. It is best to keep 10 out of 100 guests connected with you as opposed to making a decent attempt to get a 100 out of the billion individuals on the planet to go through your site.

6. Create content that is shareable

After you have figured the group of people that ought to visit your site, you have to figure out how to make content that is convincing and sufficiently enticing to make individuals share that on online networking platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

Research on existing content online that has been shared significantly on online networking and take notes on the quality points the content has got to offer and makes it shareable.

On that note, construct something new based upon your insight and as your individual writing style.

7. Add links to other powerful websites from your content

Backing your content with links from high-power sites (like Wikipedia) enhances your reader’s trust in your website. Give credits to an influencer’s blog or website that has given you thoughts to create content for your site.

Connecting to such authority websites increases your Page Authority significantly and you are giving your visitors all the right reasons to stay associated with your blog.

8. Your content must compel them to make a move or take a step they haven’t done before

In spite of your content being of shareable worth, it ought to be one that initiates some sort of activity from the reader.

A content that challenges the reader to explore a new territory or do something that’s different makes your content an actionable one.

9. Have an incredible website design

Since individuals skim a content whatsoever, an awesome content should be presented with great design. The use of pictures which gets the user in touch with any of his feelings or by arousing his interest can expand the engagement rate for your article rendering it a converting piece.

10. Attempt to make Timeless Content

An immortal or timeless content, basically, is one which is intriguing and is significant for a long stretch of time. If your content is ceaselessly new and applicable, odds are that the content will get more linked and voted for popularity. So try and create content that’s immortal and evergreen.

KPIs and Metrics in SEO: 15 Ways to Measure Your SEO Success

KPIs in SEO

When you start an SEO campaign for a website, eventually you will realise you need some sort of measure to check your performance. Certain fussy clients who can’t quite see the impact of your SEO campaign request for progress reports and performance website analysis. So how do you illustrate your success to them? Or what means can you use to check and measure what difference your SEO activities are making?

It all boils down to one thing: You’ve got to keep track of what you are doing. There are lots of elements you need to track on but where do you start? A successful campaign uses a control system to measure whether your SEO campaign delivers results. KPIs are one of them.

Read on to find out what are KPIs in SEO and some of the metrics that actually give you insights into where you have reached along your goal path. Besides, analysing your goal outreach, KPIs help in efficient reporting, improved performance and client satisfaction.

What is a KPI?

KPI is an abbreviation for “Key Performance Indicator”.

KPI is a metric that is used to ascertain your actual performance against your business objectives.

So, in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), KPIs are metrics used to measure your performance against your SEO objectives, which could be ranking number 1 for the different business keywords on Google, increasing the time spent on the site, getting more conversions and sales or building your subscriber list.

Metrics could either be expressed in numbers or in ratios (percentages). So we actually have “number metrics” and “ratio metrics”.

Page views, the number of visitors to a certain page in a given period, number of sessions are number metrics. Whereas, bounce rates, conversion rates are ratio metrics as they are represented in percentages or ratios.

So What’s the Difference between a KPI and a Metric?

Just the context. Basically, metrics are just a value of some sort. It can be the number of page views, unique visitors or conversion rates. But KPI adds a business value to that metric.

KPI is whether the metric is changing over time and whether it’s increasing or decreasing and in what direction.

So generally, a metric becomes a KPI when it impacts your SEO Campaign significantly. You can greatly increase the conversion rate on a website by optimising the site for keywords, good design and so on.

How to Find Your Relevant KPIs For an SEO Campaign

To precisely quantify your SEO success, decide what you are really trying to achieve from your SEO campaigns. How do you want the end-result to look like?

1. First, identify what the client’s business is about and its specific objectives. It can be increase in conversions or an increase in the number of orders. Also do a competition analysis on the relevant keywords. It’s because a higher competition can take a long time and requires larger work volume before you actually start delivering results.

2. Translate those specific objectives into measurable goals which can be expressed in numbers or percentages.

3. Tie your KPIs with these goals.

For instance, your client’s goal may be a 10% increase in net sales for the next 3 months. Then your KPI is the net increase in the conversion rate for the website for that period.

If your client is a publisher or a blogger whose main source of income is from the Adsense Ads displayed across the site, then the relevant KPI may be “pageviews”.

If you are unsure as to whether a metric translates to a relevant KPI, measure its impact on the client’s business. It can be an increase in sales (conversions), income or subscriptions.

If a significant increase or decrease in a metric causes a corresponding increase or decrease in costs, revenue or impact the cashflow of the client’s business, then consider that metric a KPI.

Universal SEO KPIs

As your clientele expands, the number of performance reports you have to create also increases. Consequently, your headache can soar too! So here are a few universal KPIs to make your life simpler. These KPIs can easily be measured using Google Analytics Dashboard for the website, Google Search Console, Moz OSE and Alexa Ranking tool.

We have categorised the KPIs for SEO into four:

  1. Awareness: How is your site performing in terms of SEO? How much have the rankings increased for the keywords in a certain period, say 3 months?
  2. Content Performance: Are people visiting your site consuming your contents?
  3. Engagement
  4. Conversions

KPIs for Measuring SEO Performance/ Website Awareness on Google

  1. Ranking changes for the marketable keywords (Keywords that aid in conversion)
  2. Ranking changes for secondary keywords (Keywords that bring traffic but doesn’t help that much in converting)
  3. Increase in organic traffic (number of clicks)
  4. Number of impressions
  5. Increase in brand search traffic: Brand search traffic comes through a search in which the keyword is your brand name
  6. Changes in Domain Authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA)

KPIS for Measuring Content Performance

  1. Number of Page Views
  2. Increase in number of sessions, unique sessions
  3. Percentage of Returning Visitors

KPIs for Measuring Engagement

  1. Average number of pages per session
  2. Bounce Rates
  3. Average session duration
  4. Average Time Spent on a particular page
  5. Social Action taken, such as a Twitter share or a Facebook Like

KPIs for Measuring Leads and Conversions

Leads and conversions on a website can be tracked by adding the relevant landing page for “Goal Tracking” on Google Analytics.

  1. For an E-commerce Website: If you add the shopping cart page under “Goals” in Google Analytics, you can track the number of times an item was added to the shopping cart. If the item proceeded to the “Payment” page, it is a conversion. If the item was added to the shopping cart but no further action was taken, it was just a lead but not a conversion. Herein, you can suggest factors for converting those leads into customers.
  2. For a Service Website: The “goal” can either be a visit to the Contact page, the Pricing page or filling out an enquiry form. The number of people visiting the Contact page or filling the form is termed as a conversion KPI for the website of a service company.
  3. For an Adsense Publisher: The conversion will be the number of clicks on the ads displayed on the publisher’s website.
  4. For a Blogger: The increase in newsletter signups, the number of ebooks or PDFs downloaded from the website or the number of subscribers would be a conversion KPI for a blogger or a news website.

SEO is a never ending process. The algorithms change, the number of competitors change and more and more clients come in requiring digital marketers to monitor campaigns on a continual basis. Being digital marketers and SEOs, we identify those areas of the site which can be improved more.

KPIs are a huge part of SEO and can give you suggestions as to how you can improve those areas on the website and optimise it for conversions. What worked in favour of SEO before doesn’t anymore. Google has evolved the job of an SEO professional a lot and all of this means that it’s a bit harder to prove the ROI to your clients. These days, reporting has a bigger value attached to it. It can help you perform great and also is a means to make your client realise the true worth of your SEO campaign.

KPIs help in managing your campaigns better, which in turn converts you from a simple SEO professional to a strategic business partner who clearly provides value in all your services. Of course, each business is different and can have their own KPIs, in addition to the ones above.

What set of KPIs do you use to measure your success?

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10 Interesting Facts about Internet Marketing

internet marketing

What makes Internet Marketing unique?

Planning to step into the world of Internet Marketing ? This is why you should try it. Just a glimpse into some of the very interesting facts on Online or Internet Marketing. The domain of Internet Marketing is vast. But every marketer has to get acknowledged with some basic concepts first. Like it’s said, first things first!

#1 Attracts Attention On A Large Scale

These days people spend more time on the Internet than on any other service. The exposure is quite larger here as compared to other media of marketing. The various forms of internet marketing such as blogs, social medias, etc make it a lot easier to communicate with people. Customers get to know about each new product in the market instantly.

#2 Efficient Time Management

The marketing strategy enables to share advertisement campaigns simultaneously on different platforms. Time effectiveness is a key feature of Internet Marketing. Millions of customers can be handled simultaneously without degrading customer satisfaction. This way the task is less time consuming and tedious.

#3 Cost Effective Service

internet marketingEver thought what it takes to start with internet marketing? Well, it takes up only a few of your ideas! Yes. Less or no apital investment is required. All you need is some good blog writing skill and you are almost there. Compared to the traditional marketing methods, internet marketing paves a path to a cost effective service.

#4 Wide and Global Reach of Customers

It is much easier to introduce the products in the market on a global and wider prospectus. This can be done without actually doing all the hectic travelling. Once the product is introduced, it can be at your doorstep within a single click. The modern era of shopping is addicted to these online shopping free these days.

#5 24*7 Service

internet marketing full time

Internet marketing is available on a 24*7 basis. In other words, your online campaign doesn’t work on the basis of any time schedule. It is available on the net from the moment you upload it online. Any user can access it the moment they switch on their system. This makes the task all the more simpler. Bid good-bye to the time constraints!

#6 Quick and Easy Accessibility

Everything is just one click away. Whether it’s fashion or home appliances or gadgets, just select your choice. The service is swift in action. There is no nag-nag of those salesmen or risk of travelling. Enjoy a happy home shopping experience!

#7 Easy Catch-Up

It is often difficult to save every retail retailer number on your phone. The visiting cards also do not help us much. Only beacuse we misplace them too soon. On this context, internet marketing makes it easy. Every retail information is available on the Internet. All you have to do is just take the retailer website and get the contact information.

#8 Online Payment Service

With the evolution of internet marketing, internet banking also made it way into the digital world. These days payments are mostly made digitally. This ensures quick and instant payment service over the net. The bulky bundle of cash is an old story now.

#9 Machine Learning Solutions

Customer behaviour based options are kept in front of us. This is the new era of technology called Machine Learning Services. Now even the bots can understand and play as per our choice. The systems can automatically configure based on customer behaviour. Options are set as per each user style. In the following days, this can lead into a new form of internet marketing.

#10 Long Term Services

internet marketing long term

The service starts once the ad is put up online. Even after the product is sold, the campaign remains. This attracts more user demand. There is no time-period for how long the service can last. It provides a long-lasting and continuous affect on the customers.

This is just a sneak-peek into what Internet Marketing can do. I hope this gives you an idea about just what you are looking for. Have a happy Online Marketing experience!

Fresh Penguin Update 4.0: Now Real-Time and Page Specific

After the third update on October 7, 2014, Google today rolled out a new Penguin update, which will be the last update for this algorithm. Google uses about 200 signals to bring you the aptest search results in front of you. This is the 4th Penguin Update, making it known as Penguin 4.0. Google has announced that Penguin will be part of their core algorithm, one of the 200 signals they use to process search results.

A Little Background on the Google Penguin Algorithm

google penguin update: one of the latest google algorithm changes

The Google Penguin is an algorithm, more like a filter that Google uses to capture sites that have lots of links from spammy websites The algorithm also punishes those websites having an unnatural link building process, aimed at acquiring too many links within a short period.

Key Features of Google’s Penguin Update 4.0

1. It’s real time

Previously, if your site got penalized by a Penguin update, you had to wait for the next data refresh to happen in order to see your site rankings improve. However, with Penguin 4.0, the data refreshes happen regularly. So once you have removed all the bad quality links pointing at your site, you just have to recrawl and recache your website and the rank improvements would be visible almost immediately.

2. It’s now more page-specific

The previous Penguin updates punished the website as a whole. If you had just two or three pages having lots of spammy links, rankings for the entire site would get affected. As given below, Google announced the latest Penguin update to be granular.

latest google algorithm changes: the penguin update 4.0

Hence, it’s interpreted that Google Penguin would penalize the specific set of pages or a section of the website and not the whole website

3. Changes will be visible faster

Owing to the real-time nature of Penguin 4.0, you can see your site rankings improve quickly as soon as it’s recrawled and reindexed, should your site get penalized.

Why is the Penguin Update 4.0 Awesome

1. Easy recovery: Webmasters whose sites were hit by the Penguin Update need not wait any longer. They can see their site rankings improve quickly as soon as they have disavowed the spammy links.

2. Since it’s granular, you don’t need to worry about your whole site getting hit and not getting any of your pages listed for different keywords. The Penguin Update 4.0 targets only those specific pages where the spammy links point to.

The arrival of Penguin 4.0 comes as a good news for webmasters, digital marketers, and SEO Analysts, especially because of its real-time aspect. On the flip side of the coin, it is also a warning for all blackhats to keep themselves on their toes and not practice in getting links in an unnatural manner or from spammy sites.

13 Experiences That Only SEO Analysts can Relate To

Being an SEO Analyst is awesome. If you love challenges, this is the place to be in. The job of an SEO Analyst is like a roller coaster because one never knows when Google’s Algorithm changes. Google is said to change its search algorithm 500-600 times every year! So you never know when your site rankings could go up or in the worst case scenario, go down!

So I just decided to whip up a post about the common experiences we SEOs face.

Here are those moments and experiences that only SEO Analysts can Relate to. Have fun!

1.When a client hands over an internet marketing project with keywords that have got huge competition online

 

2. When you did an SEO Audit (Website Analysis) and found that the keyword is too tough to rank for

 

3. And then you start with your SEO Activities- On Page and Off Page Activities, Content marketing, Link Building and Social Bookmarking!

 

4. When you just finished the off page activities and created blogs after blogs, taking so much effort

 

5. And now, you wait for the keyword to start ranking

 

6. You are still on the wait…

7. After the long wait, your website finally starts to rank for the keyword on Google

 

8. A few days later, when your site is ranking FIRST in Google!

 

9. And a few days later, when your site rankings go down due to some change in Google’s algorithm

 

10. And when you see your Spam Score has increased because some site that’s got a low Page Authority is linking back to you

 

11. When you get annoyed and have lost all hope

12. When the site suddenly ranks on Google after you get a link from a site that’s got high Page Authority

13. And when someone asks how you do all this

 

Ultimately you do it because you enjoy it! The best part about our jobs lies in the variety of business people you get to meet and work for! And of course, when you win!

I hope you have enjoyed this hilarious post. And in case you aren’t an SEO Analyst already, here’s a guide in case you are looking for ways to get started with a career in SEO. Stay tuned for more awesomeness!

21 Cheap Ways to Advertise Your Small Business Fast

What’s the best way to promote a small business? How do you get the word out about your business on a shoestring budget? Whether you are a small business or a startup looking for low-cost, effective solutions to publicize about your products and services, here are some quite inexpensive strategies that you can use to advertise your small business.

How to Advertise Your Small Business on a Budget

1. SEO your company website

We can bet that about 80% of your target customers might be Googling. Hence, you can’t overlook getting listed up in the right place where your customers are looking for you.

So get your site geared up tow show up online on Google as well as on mobile devices. Find out the marketable keywords related to your products and services and optimize your page to get listed on Google in those keywords.

cheap ways to market a business

2. Create a Facebook Page for your business

With about a whopping 1.6 billion users (that’s a third of the entire number of people on the planet!), Facebook is the place to establish a presence on in if you are looking for growth! You can start a Facebook page and use it to post photos, offers and discounts about your products and services. This way you also get to advertise without paying a single penny as well as connect with your customers.

3. Try Sponsored Ads on Facebook

Once you have crossed the threshold of getting a significantly large number of likes on your Facebook Page or if you know that your posts are creating a good interaction among the audience, you can try using Facebook’s paid features. Depending on your goal, whether it’s getting more number of likes or more website clicks, you can boost your posts or pages using paid options to reach a large number of people. The catch is that you get to choose the target region and the type of audience you want to show your ads to.

4. Invest in Google AdWords or PPC Ads

Paid Ads on Google which are created using Google AdWords can be a great way to show up online instantly in the keywords that people regularly use in search. Since it involves setting up a bid rate and managing your budget full time, it’s suggested that you outsource it to PPC Experts who are qualified and trained to maintain multiple accounts in different niche.

cheap ways to advertise your small business online: Google Adwords

5. Start a company blog and promote your business using great content

I don’t think I even need to say this, but I might get guilty if I didn’t mention the importance of some kickass content! If you yourself are able to create it, it would be great! (Free is, of course, great, right?) If writing isn’t your cup of tea, you can always consider the influential bloggers in your niche and contact them. Everyone loves Top 10 lists, Best Practices, Tips, Do’s and Don’ts. Here’s the ultimate content marketing checklist I created, so you can get started. We have also published the 10 quick editing tips to create awesome content, which can turn any garbage to gold.

cheap ways to advertise your small business: Blogs

6. Take advantage of Press Releases

If your business does something that’s worthy of showing up in the news, never hesitate to report it in a press release. It can be your best media reference online and also generate publicity for your business at very minimal costs, with no fuss. There are dozens of press release websites online that you can take advantage of, including PRLog and Newswire.

cheap ways to advertising small businesses: press releases

7. Shoot your own videos and start a YouTube channel

You won’t believe how mind-bogglingly huge YouTube is! It’s got over a billion users online (one-third of the world!) and every minute, more than 100 hours of videos are getting uploaded in here. For some of us, YouTube is that platform where we can watch movies on a holiday, how-to guides, reviews of new gadgets and smartphones or even watch normal people unboxing and reviewing them. So if you can shoot awesome instructional and “how-to” videos or create simple Vlogs relevant to your business offerings, you can market yourself without spending big bucks. Hire a film student to do it for you or you can even shoot it with an old iPhone. It doesn’t have to be a DSLR camera itself.

cheap ways to advertise small businesses: videos

8. Promote your business on Twitter

Did you know that this micro-blogging giant has about 350,000 Tweets being sent out every minute? So not having a business profile on Twitter could be one huge mistake. Tweet, tweet and tweet about your products, new arrivals, offers discounts or simply about what made your day awesome. Give your favourite customer a mention and thank him for being so awesome with a 140 character message. That could be one sure fire way to getting a dedicated number of followers who could be your potential customers.

cheap ways to advertise your small businesses

9. Get locally listed

As the stats mention, local searches lead 50% of the mobile visitors to visit shops in a day. And 68% of the people use the “Get Directions” or “Call” buttons shown on local listings on Google. Many of us drive down the road to your shop using the directions as shown by Google Maps. So, make sure you get listed locally on Google as well as on the local online directories like Yahoo! Local, Foursquare and so on.

cheap ways to advertise your small businesses: get locally listed

10. Repurpose your blog content into Infographics, Videos and Slideshare posts

Recycle your blog posts and convert them into an eBook. Or transform your blog posts into infographics and Slideshare posts. Since picture-based posts are proved to have 600 times more engagement than text posts, infographics have even beat videos to be the most shared content on the internet. As for Slideshare, it’s known as the “YouTube of PowerPoint slides”. So you can transform your long form content into sales assets with slides in here. Besides another fun way to transform your content is by making a video tutorial about your products, DIYs and video reviews.

11. Get branded through Instagram and Pinterest

Pinterest is now the second social networking site in terms of growth, which is about 57%. Most of the Pinners in Pinterest are into art and craft and 88% of them are proven to buy the stuff based on the pins they see. Boasting billions of pins, this is where you as a business must showcase your products, especially if they involve food and drink, art and craft, home décor, DIYs, fashion, technology, cars, holidays and events. Same goes for Instagram, that’s booming with about 400 million users, 75% of which are located outside of US.

cheap ways to advertise your small business

12. Use LinkedIn Ads to get linked up

With over 400 million members worldwide, LinkedIn is another professional network you should be having your profile in addition to Google, Facebook and Twitter. If you are a B2B company, LinkedIn is a great platform to connect with business users. LinkedIn Ads allow you to target your audience with characteristics like geography, demographics, job title, location or the LinkedIn groups they belong to. Being able to design an ad copy that’s tailored to the type of audience you are targeting, can help you achieve higher conversion rates and hence, better ROI.

cheap ways to advertise your small business

13. Design Flyers and Distribute them

Get help from that creative, designer friend of yours and create compelling-looking flyers and get them printed at an inexpensive rate. Distribute them to the people walking nearby your shop doors, give them away to apartment complexes, your friends, fix them on as many cars and other vehicles as possible or just throw them around the street!

cheap ways to advertise a business

14. Email Marketing

Emails are a very cost-effective system to advertise your business, especially when you are adding a new product line or a service to your existing business. It can also be used to invite people to come shopping especially by sending them promotional offers or coupon codes. Build an in-house mailing list of your existing customers or from your Facebook and Twitter followers. Communicate with them by sending them out emails once or twice a month. Anything more than that could put you on the spam list.

cheap ways to advertise a small business

15. Online Contests

If you can cough up some money for a prize, you can get a large number of participants to follow you. They could be your potential leads! Organize online contests which centre on your product or services. Having a tight budget? Don’t worry, you don’t need to give super expensive prizes. Two tickets to a movie or a sporting event, a makeup kit or some back-to-school gear supplies like some fancy backpacks, markers or an art set could be attractive enough for getting a lot of participation.

cheap ways to market a small business

16. Create Surveys

You can create interesting polls and surveys asking people to vote what they like best about your products, what motivated them to buy it. Offer them a discount or a coupon on completing the survey (as given by Kentucky Fried Chicken). You can also use these surveys to understand where they work, their age group and their income scale. You can also use the information to formulate your marketing campaign and also build a valuable email list of your potential leads.

cheap ways to market a small business

17. Vehicle Advertising

Go for a magnetic sign on your car or van, especially on the back of your vehicle. It is a very visible form of small business advertising. As your vehicle goes down the road, certain customers may copy down the address and phone number from it as they drive nearby.

cheap ways to market a small business

18. Bench/Bus Stop Advertising

Transit advertising can help you reach a massive part of your target audience. Get into an agreement with the local transport service to know more about the possibilities of advertising in benches and bus stops.

cheap ways to market a business

19. Ask your customers to review you

Online reviews on sites like Yelp and Google can make or mar your business. If you are confident that your customers are satisfied, ask them to rate you and submit a review. As you receive more of the 4 to 5-star ratings on reviews online, you will be the business that everyone wants to buy from. It’s a powerful tool to increase your credibility and trust among people about your business.

cheap ways to market a business

 

20. Collaborate and Cross-Promote

Expand your marketing outreach and surge your advertising power by joining forces with another business, that’s not your competitor. Get together and sponsor events together. This way you get to meet new people and expand your customer base. Add social media contests to the mix along with advertising your business quite a bit on each other’s websites too.

cheap ways to market a business

21. Offer coupons and giveaways

Once in a while, especially when it’s a festive season, send out coupons or promotional codes via emails, flyers and let people know that you are giving them some massive discount they need to make use of immediately. This sense of urgency can create a huge sales rush, so be prepared. Giveaways can also be announced especially for those loyal buyers or consumers of your products and services. You can organise a giveaway for people who make the biggest purchase or for people who sign up for your services in a given time limit. Online giveaways can be an awesome way to promote your site.

cheap ways to market a business

Conclusion

To conclude, advertising is all about finding out where your customers are hanging out and reaching out to them then and there. Every niche has got an opportunity to promote its business online. The key is finding out that appropriate mix that works fruitfully for you and channelling your resources optimally for it.

Have more ideas to promote or advertise your small business on a shoestring budget?

Do you have an idea that we missed out here? Let us know about it in the comments below.

Google Update: Penalty for Sites with Intrusive Mobile Interstitials

As announced by Google on its official blog, they are rolling out a new penalty update from January 10, 2017. This new algorithm update will punish those mobile sites that irritatingly pop up interstitials in front of the user trying to browse the site.

Google had previously rolled out an update on September 2015 targeting mobile interstitials that ask users to install a new app. Ever since Google had been focusing its research on the user experience due to interstitials in general.

Google mentioned this new algorithm change will rank the pages with interstitials way too lower than they did once ago. Google’s new update is actually a replacement of the penalty for mobile app interstitials rolled out in September, last year.

But that’s not it! Google says they are committed to “helping users find the content they are looking for”. So it will be tackling those intrusive interstitials by giving them negative rankings in search results. According to Google, these pages “provide a poorer experience to users than other pages where content is immediately accessible.” So after January 10, 2017, pages where the content is not easily accessible (that is, content which is present on the page and able to be indexed, but not viewable by a user due to an intrusive mobile interstitial) will have its rankings pushed down on search results.

Clearly speaking, Google won’t be negatively listing all sorts of mobile interstitials.

Sites that will be affected by the new Google Update

Here are some examples of non-accessible content pages with interstitials that Google will be punishing:

  • Sites that pop up a new window (the interstitial) that covers the entire content when a user immediately gets on the site from search results to view it
  • Sites that display a compelling, standalone interstitial that a user has to accept or forcefully dismiss
  • Sites that use a layout where the top portion seems to be a standalone interstitial, but the original content has been inlined underneathGoogle Update Penalty for Sites with Intrusive Mobile Interstitials

But not all interstitials would be punished, as Google says. There are sites would not be affected by the Google’s new algorithm change.

Sites that won’t be penalized under the new Google Update

Examples of sites that wouldn’t get affected by Google’s new ranking signal:

  • Sites that show interstitial as part of a legal obligation, such as for age verification or cookie usage
  • Sites that show login dialog boxes, under which lies content that’s not indexable publicly. This is in regards to sites that contain private information that could be in the form of an email or the unindexable content behind a paywall
  • Sites that use a reasonable amount of screen space to display banner ads, which can easily be removed by clicking it.

new google update: sites with interstitials that won't be affected by this update

This new Google update comes across as an incredibly great news for mobile users and webmasters, who found such popups annoying.

Once again, Google has announced that content and the intent of a search query will still be a major ranking signal, whatsoever. And this new signal would be one among the hundreds of signals used to gauge whether the site is worthy of being included in search results. The good part is there is plenty of time for webmasters to gear up and see if their sites have got “intrusive interstitials” and remove them.

10 Quick Editing Tips to Create Awesome Content

Whether you are a bestselling novelist or a small online blogger, you have got to edit your work. Your first draft is always a garbage of your thoughts disorganized and points that are uncertainly stated. Ever since writing dawned, it started with chaos and was restructured to end in order. Editing is such an important part of writing that you should be dedicating a big chunk of your writing time. While you go through your first draft, you need to check if your content is the best you have to offer and whether it’s got a flow or a rhythm going on in it.

Every writer creates a piece of content with a goal. For most of us, saving time while also polishing our writings is the main goal. Here are ten quick editing tips just to help you achieve this goal of presenting your best work in no time.

Write Awesome with these 10 Quick Editing Tips

So you have just finished writing your first draft and now it’s time to edit before you hit that “publish” button. But before you edit, I suggest you run away and leave off that piece you have been writing. If you were to do it all in just one sitting, you are committing the big blunder of letting all the errors fool your eyes into believing they don’t exist. Talk about ghosts in your content! When it’s time, wear those horn-rimmed eyeglasses and use these quick editing tips to make sure that you have hit the right notes and end up with the perfect final piece of content.

quick editing tips to create the best content

Tip #1 Skim the cream off your content

People read quickly these days and skim your content as much as possible without going over each and every word. So why not make it easy for your audience by keeping your content crisp, brief and fat-free? For your readers’ sake, don’t add so much fat into content by dragging out your sentences. Break up your content into bullet points with interesting benefit-driven sub-headers.

Take a look at these sentences and see the difference when reading them without the bolded words.

  • Every single person should read.
  • But the real issue here is people have a short attention span.
  • You are going to have to keep your writing short and brief.

Don’t you feel that these sentences are better off with the bolded words?

Tip #2 Use commas only wherever needed

In the English language, there are lots of rules to be followed when using punctuation. Even the usage of the little comma is subject to so many rules and regulations. Don’t over-complicate commas by putting them here and there like mayo on your sandwiches! The idea is to read your sentences out loud and if you feel that a certain sentence is longer than ordinary, break it up with a comma. Alternately, use commas on those spots you feel that the reader is going to stop reading.

Tip #3 Remove Empty Filler Words

The use of phrases like “here is”, “it takes” and “there is” takes the focus from the nouns in a sentence. They require other filler words to combine with them like who, how and when. Such phrases also stretch your sentences longer than necessary.

If your sentences contain a lot of these phrases, then it’s time to rewrite them.

Here are some examples so you can teach yourself to rectify them:

  • It’s fun to read- Reading is fun
  • There are many people who love to read- Many people read
  • Here are some DIY ideas for you to try- Some DIY ideas for you to try are

If you have already given a little description on the subject, then it’s okay to use words like “here”, “it” and “there”. For instance: I love being an SEO Analyst. It’s a great profession.

Tip #4 Replace weak verbs with strong ones

Certain words can reduce the impact of what we are implying. Look out for those words and replace them with strong, powerful verbs. It can drive home the point you are stating through your content, besides making it interesting.

Certain examples:

  • She had gone from Greece to Rome- She traveled from Greece to Rome
  • Dominos is giving out coupons- Dominos offers coupons
  • Make out a plan- Create a plan

Tip #5 Use Powerful Adjectives

Avoid using so much of “really” and “very” when you are describing something. Many people use “very good”, “really bad” to emphasize something while speaking. It looks good when you speak but when you write it down on paper, you get to see the difference. Words like “very” and “really” sound inadequate and are so much less of an intensifier than they ought to be. Keep in mind your reader’s time is precious. It pays not to waste his time by being as concise as possible. Get straight to the point with confidence using power words.

  • Really bad- Dreadful
  • Really good- Exceptional, Marvelous
  • Very Huge- Enormous, Tremendous
  • Very impressive- Catchy

Example: 5 Marvelous Benefits of Data Entry Service Outsourcing

When you use power words, remember to deliver your readers something that’s in pace with those adjectives. Don’t charge up your audience’s expectations and then give them some mediocre content to read. I gotta tell you, it’s a crime!

Tip #6 Use contractions

Contractions make your writing sound more friendly, conversational and informal. You don’t want your reader thinking that he’s reading a newspaper or a textbook. Examples of contractions are it’s, I’m, you’re, gonna, wasn’t, haven’t and so on. They are easy to pronounce and make your post easy to comprehend. So do me a favor and use as many contractions as you can in your post and connect better with your readers.

Tip #7 Remove those unwanted ings in your posts

“I am writing about…”, “She was running to…”, or “We are thinking about…” When you see so many ings in your copy, think twice about whether they are really needed or not- simply because you probably don’t.

You can get rid of an “ing” and say “I write about…”, “She ran to…”, or “We thought about…”. This gets your copy clear and easy to read.

Tip #8 Use Bullet points that match up

Talking about breaking up sentences, you might be doing it with bullet points. Bullet points state points quick and clear (like a bullet!) without much fuss. They are popular for breaking up long content and making your copy more readable. When using bullet points, make sure it matches up to the blog post title as well as the surrounding content. Many of the writers do the mistake of creating bullet points that are completely different and totally not related to each other.

For example, in a post that’s titled “5 Mistakes that could ruin your interview”, here’s a bullet point that actually goes along:

  • Forgetting to prepare a formal introduction

Here’s one that doesn’t go along with the title (because it’s not actually an error- you are suggesting what is to be done, not the mistake):

  • Prepare a formal introduction

If you are writing a post with a title that goes “5 Tips for Instant Success at Job Interviews”, you should be laying out “tips” in your bullet points.

Another quick tip for bullet points is keeping them symmetrical as possible. If your first bullet point finishes in a line, make the rest of them finish in a line. It’s good to the eyes and hence, easy for the reader.

Tip #9 Unpack longer sentences

A simple guide to writing better is to use one idea in a sentence. Long sentences make your writing a drag. Hunt for those long sentences in your copy and fix them as follows:

  • Eliminate unnecessary words
  • When you see a comma, think twice about whether it could be a full stop
  • If you see the words “which” and “that”, think if you can start a new sentence
  • Rewrite and rephrase

Tip #10 Track your mistakes while editing

As a final piece of advice, keep track of the mistakes you make. It can be a spelling mistake too. Certain words are hard to spell correctly. For example, I tend to add an after onward. So when I edit my posts, I keep an eye out for onward so I can make sure I was not butchered again. When you keep a list of your writing mistakes, it becomes an important reference resource. It just helps the task of editing in future a lot easier and is a sure fire way of not making the same mistakes over and over again.

In Conclusion

Grammar is something you might hate right now. But a good writing that encompasses good grammar earns so much respect and credibility from its readers. (Personally, bad grammar is my pet peeve!)

If you care about your readers, you must edit your copy and proofread it over and over again. Tweet it!

It’s key to making your content marketing strategy work out great for the long term. Have more editing tips that worked out for your content? I would love to hear it over your comments.

It’s key to making your content marketing strategy work out great for the long term. Have more editing tips that worked out for your content? I would love to hear it over your comments.

Why SEO needs a Psychological Approach to it

Crawling, Fetching, GoogleBots, Sitemaps, Alt Tags, etc, etc! SEO seems to be a game of making search engines find you, getting them to display your website on top so you get more business. SEO is perceived as an online marketing tool that is way too technical because it addresses issues relating to the website’s structure. For all we know, SEO is all about creating and linking to unique, high-quality content for search engines with all the right keywords!

How far is it possible to take a website using SEO? Above the surface, this depends on what strategies you capable of implementing and the techniques you use to “defeat” your competitors on your way to Google’s top but beneath it all, pull back the curtains and you will see, human psychology is behind all the show.

Yes, SEO is psychology. Why do we optimize sites for good content? Why should we use great images on the website? Why do we need a faster page loading speed? All because you want the user to feel inspired and click on to your website and buy your product. Your website is your sales person- the marketer and you (an SEO professional) are behind the show, analyzing the visitor’s mentality- what he needs, why he was turned off from your site and how you can sell him what the company’s got to offer.

Why SEO needs a psychological approach to it

Understanding the User Mentality

SEO has a technical side which anyone can learn easily in no time. But the best SEOs look beyond the technicalities of a website. They not only look at the website that’s in front of them, but they also look at them from a visitor’s point of view. They don’t just think about HTML tags and techie stuff relating to the site, they look at the UX (user experience) on the site. They are always figuring about what the customer wants out of the site and they are working on achieving that.

The best SEOs treat a website like a living entity that people want to befriend to, which is why taking a psychological approach is necessary for making the website run smoothly like clockwork.

Besides, how well are you able to probe into the minds of users? Especially if you had to enter a market you never knew? Well, any sort of marketing depends on this approach.

Search engines have their algorithms and rules as they want to serve the purpose of helping users find the best of the right information. We SEOs follow these search engine optimization techniques because we want the traffic to come to our website or blog. The biggest mistake that’s happening to all of us is forgetting what our audience have in their minds. Don’t just make your site or blog blindly according to the Google algorithms and updates without caring about what a user thinks when he/she visits your site. Even Google has emphasized the importance of considering the visitors when building your site. So, SEO needs a psychological approach to it if you think of your target audience in the process.

The parts of SEO that’s influenced by psychological thinking

1.Content Creation & Curation

We all know content marketing has been the most talked about hashtag on twitter these days. Content marketing involves the creation of high-quality content, getting quality links and promoting it on social media.

SEO needs a psychological approach

Your content should answer all the questions that a visitor might be wanting answers to.

Users like content that is answering all the questions they have in their minds all in one spot. It’s one way to make the user come back again to your site. Say, you have a page that talks about a product with just brief information like product features in bullet points. Or you have a web page that has got a product information with features, user reviews, and testimonials. Which page is the one you as a visitor would like? Of course, the second page that has got a detailed information with features, other users’ reviews and so on. This is also what people are looking for.

Providing information in a simple and convincing manner works as a boon to forming the right content marketing strategy. As users get convinced by what’s there on your site, it magically reduces bounce rates. They keep returning back to your site as you have made it easy for them to figure out what they want. This tells Google that your page is something that users want and hence, they bring your site rankings up.

2. Communication with your visitors

We all dislike people who appear to have selfish interests and behavior. Psychologically, we close doors at people who try to make us accept their opinions in a feisty and pushy manner. But we love people who are willing to share something great with us. We can never get enough of people who give us something in benefit and motivate us. It’s just the same for your website.

Rather than trying to aggressively sell your product on your site, invite them to buy your offerings by giving them some sort of valuable tip, a buying advice or presenting some great opportunities that a user doesn’t even know about or hasn’t heard of.

3. Engaging Colors and Graphics on your website

As Neil Patel, the world’s most famous content marketer states, “Color is 85% of the reason you purchased a product”. What’s the color scheme you have chosen for your site? Are your color scheme and the site design turning off visitors from your site?

It’s a proven fact that colors send various signals to the brain and trigger various emotions inside you. Choosing colors for your site can be tricky. But it should be appealing and engaging to your traffic. Women are more inclined towards softer and brighter colors like red, green or purple. Men, on the other hand, tend to go for basic colors like black and blue. If you are selling cosmetics and beauty products on your site, you need to use colors that women are likely to go for. It would be a huge mistake to use black and blue for that website!

4. Keywords must be generated based on what your target audience is using

These days, we use the Google Keyword Planner Tool, UberSuggest and the like to do a keyword search and find out the long tail keywords we must be using on our sites. Using such internet marketing tools is commendable as you need to know which are the keywords that could get you a higher ranking in search results.

But are those the keywords that your target audience is typing into a search to find you? Find out more about keywords that potential customers are using rather than relying solely on the above-mentioned tools.

5. Headlines Optimization: Is it catchy and amazing?

The use of power words like weird, incredible, secret, surprising, mysterious, bizarre, essential, strange, outrageous and so on, can make a huge difference to how people perceive your website among search results. The best headline is the one which uses this formula:

Adjective+ Keyword+ Promise = Killer Headline

For example, instead of a headline that says, “How to Start a Website”, consider a great headline like, “5 Quick Ways to Start a Website Easily”. In the second one, the headline not only appears catchy but you are also providing value and benefits in 5 ways. This is how you influence your visitors to click on to your site from the search.

Do you agree with the fact that SEO needs a psychological approach?

As you see above SEO is not just about creating good quality content, building links and getting it found online. That can result in leads but if you want conversions, that depends on studying your visitor’s mind and applying it to almost every element on the website. Do you believe in the fact that SEO is now influenced by psychology? Share it in the comments below.

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7 Incredible Marketing lessons to learn from Pokemon Go

I don’t know how I should begin, but let me tell you, Pokemon has been one of my favorite and most watched cartoons in my childhood. I still recall not studying for my examinations and watching Pokemon even the day before the exams. It was essentially a story of two children Ash and Misty. Ash is set upon a journey to become the world’s largest Pokemon trainer and he has to face lots of challenges in the form of contests between other Pokemon trainers. Each Pokemon trainer has a monster (called the Pokemon) you can command for the match. These monsters were contained in balls, which its trainer could catch and throw out for a match. I could go all day talking about Pokemon cartoon episodes, but right now I have to stop my nostalgia trips to my 90s childhood.

Because today we are looking at what lessons have the launch of Pokemon Go has given us all. Pokemon Go has become so viral in the digital media. People have become so addicted to this game now. By now, it has been downloaded billions of times in the US alone making Pokemon Go the most mobile game in the US history! And by the time, I am writing this, the world has already witnessed the rash of problems happening all due to Pokemon Go, including death! The craze for Pokemon Go has indeed raised so much safety concerns already. That’s the height of people’s madness for the game.

What is the Pokemon Go?

If you don’t know already, the game of Pokemon Go requires people (the Pokemon trainer) catching imaginary monsters into their virtual balls, using the GPS on their phones. The camera turns the place where you are standing into a virtual ground where you can hunt for these iconic monsters. The best part is, you are rewarded for walking so long until your phone vibrates, indicating that a Pokemon is somewhere around. As soon as you find and catch the Pokemon, you are rewarded with game points. As you score a certain amount of game points, you pass various levels in the game. When you have collected so many monsters in your virtual ball, you can play tournaments with people having the same levels of yours. The game changes the local places and buildings into virtual Pokemon gyms to train their monsters and PokeStops, which people must physically visit to stock up accessories for their Pokemon monsters. These locations have been determined by location data gathered by Nintendo in the research period.

Even though Pokemon Go has not been released in India officially, people have been downloading APK versions available online to play it. So what’s this big deal of Pokemon Go? Why has the fame for just a niche mobile app skyrocketed so hugely? We haven’t even see TV ads of the Pokemon Go launch yet. As we all know, Pokemon Go became so viral through the Internet.

What are the marketing lessons to learn from Pokemon Go Strategy?

The launch of Pokemon Go, a game that seemed to be made for children has already made huge impacts on business. It’s also going to dramatically change the way businesses do marketing in future. Here’s a catch of we can learn from Pokemon Go’s astounding marketing strategy.

1.Social media can turbocharge a brand’s popularity to amazing proportions.

Pokemon Go is the perfect example of viral marketing. For the last few weeks, when scrolling through our Facebook or Twitter feeds, if you looked on both sides, Pokemon Go has been the most talked about stuff. Even on the days leading up to the launch, no one had seen ads showing up anywhere other than on social media. Pokemon Go was a fire spread by the digital word-of-mouth on social media. Nintendo, the marketers of Pokemon Go had just sent out tweets about the game’s launch in the US, Australia, and New Zealand. Over time, they have got mentions in 6.6 million tweets.

2. You don’t need a big fat budget for an ad campaign

As you see, Nintendo just used the social platform to send tweets about their launch. The marketers of Pokemon Go didn’t even turn to invest in visual advertising on TV. What matters here the most is that you connect well with people. That can be done by using social media as part of your marketing strategy. This proves that marketing is not necessarily associated with a weighty ad campaign.

3. Re-purposing content to match the modern trendsmarketing-lessons-to-learn-from-pokemon-go-man

The 90s cartoon content of Pokemon Go was re-purposed according to the latest technology and as per the tastes of the modern market. They have cleverly used the concept of augmented reality that’s becoming a trend of modern gaming apps. Nintendo, the marketers of Pokemon Go, could have used totally different assets but it chose to use the old assets, that people love so much and built a game based on it. After all, what’s better than the much loved Pokemon monsters coming into real life, right? Nintendo sought to use the brand it had established among the 90s generation and sought to use the passion they had to ignite its sales.

4. Targeting the audience at the perfect timing

Nintendo sought to launch the Pokemon Go game before the summer holidays, which meant that it was targeting the kids, teenagers and young people who would be leaving home for their vacations. It’s because they realized that these youngsters will be more likely to get caught into the hype.

5. Making use of the mobile platform

Nintendo was a reluctant company when it came to smartphone gaming apps. But right now, they have changed the entire concept of the mobile platform. Before the access of augmented reality required several gaming devices to be physically worn on our body. But Nintendo has made it possible without them. As stated online by people playing Pokemon Go, the app makes uses of the places of interest such as the churches, malls and so. These places of interest are used as PokeStops and Pokemon gyms. This means late night walks or sudden trips here for training your monster in these gyms.

This has opened doors to vast opportunities for marketers. Malls and shopping centers can lure a huge influx of people simply by putting a “Pokemon” sign on their front doors. This would make lots of people visit these places in search of an iconic monster in the building. Perhaps one of these days, coffee shops and restaurants will be serving Pokemon inspired drinks and dishes. And you could get you a discount if you show the game on the phone to them.

6. Branding is everything

Have you heard of Ingress, another game similar to Pokemon Go that’s based on augmented reality? Well, Ingress was introduced in 2013 and it had more in-depth features that Pokemon Go. But it never became a success hit as the Pokemon Go.

Why? Because Pokemon Go was a brand that was engraved into people’s minds 20 years ago. The brand which Pokemon has established in its customers nostalgically as well as on other terms, is the main reason why it sells. This shows that businesses with good branding strategies can have loyal customers anywhere around, even after a long stretch of time.

7. Incentives increase audience engagement

The Pokemon Go is based on a reward system at each stage of the game. A person gets certain game points as a reward for catching a Pokemon monster. A player also gets reward points for the distance he walks in order to find the Pokemon. It is also kind of good because it increases the physical activity of the user! This type of reward system has boosted engagement like never before and as you know, people find it hard to get unhooked from their phones when they start playing this game. Currently, it is claimed that in the US and the countries where the game was launched, people are spending lesser time on Facebook and other social media.

What else could change because of Pokemon Go?Marketing Lessons to learn from Pokemon Go

By brainstorming the latest developments in technology, identifying customer mindsets and branding, Nintendo has made the app that’s going to set even more records in the upcoming future. Even though the game promises to increase outdoor activity and bringing people of different cultures together, Pokemon Go has opened the gate to so many opportunities for businesses. Pokemon Go has already made a huge momentum in the news, social media and in many people’s lives.

Pokemon Go features the use of augmented reality. Before long, marketers will be using the augmented reality spaces to advertise and sell their products. So that could mean a significant advancement in digital marketing and finding out new strategies for this huge untapped platform.

Are you ready to play the game and collect your Pokemon? Off to catch ’em all!