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Google My Business – Local SEO Strategies for Small Businesses

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If you have a website or business on the internet, you are likely thrilled with any search traffic and rankings you might receive. However, if you are a local-based business, it’s all about ranking for keywords that are relevant to your location or specifically about your business.

In most cases, local businesses won’t really understand the metrics of SEO or how to improve their rankings in the search results. More often than not, they will simply be happy if they are appearing at the top of Google for their brand name, and also have a Google Business Listing with their hours, location and business details.

This is ideal… but there are definitely more opportunities for traffic, growth, and improvement — especially when you start considering online traffic and content options with geo-targeted traffic.

Google My Business is a great place for local businesses to start with their online journey, but it’s definitely not the beginning and end. Implement these three components into your content creation and marketing efforts to get even more out of your local business listings in Google.

Start a Website or Blog for Your Local Business

Most small businesses and local retail locations should already have an online website or blog, but many still don’t. Unfortunately, way too many businesses think that a listing in Google Local or Yelp is going to represent them well online — however, this isn’t the case at all. Instead, it could actually be hurting them in the long run.

Without an official website for your business, there is no way for your audience and customers to really get in direct contact with you. Any information that might be found on other websites or local directories might also not be updated or accurate. At the same time, without a website of your own, you are letting customers leave reviews on other websites that you have no control over.

With a site of your own, you are always in control over what people see, find and discover about your business. This is also a great way to make a better first impression (through a nice website, pictures and company info). Once the connection has been made, you can then showcase your best customer feedback and ratings that appear within your Google My Business page.

Wouldn’t you rather be sending people directly to your own website when they search for your brand online, versus sending them to another third party website? You should.

Take Advantage of Facebook Advertising

There are currently over 1.8 billion users on Facebook. While the social network has worldwide exposure, it’s also done wonders for localized businesses and brands in the process.

Through the use of both Facebook Page and Facebook Advertising, local businesses can reach audiences within their area, while also growing a following at the same time. This is why you commonly see flyers that say “Like Us on Facebook” in your favorite retail locations. It’s a simple, fun and easy way for brands to connect with their audiences, while also allowing them to build a ‘social mailing list’ in the process.

Advanced local businesses and brands can also take advantage of the demographic and geo-targeting options that are available through Facebook Ads. The same can be said for ‘custom audience’ targeting options, which allows site owners to display ads through Facebook based on visitors to a website or emails on a mailing list.

Keeping with the theme of how to maintain a great online presence and building up your Google My Business profile, Facebook Pages and marketing can also be a great way to lead people to your local search listings where users can leave ratings and reviews of your own. Since your audience is already following you on Facebook, there is a good chance their review and rating would be positive.

Focus on Local SEO, Content Creation and Competitors

The third and final tip for improving a local business’ presence online, is to simply know how to rank your site in Google. As mentioned, it’s not hard to claim your Google My Business listing in Google… but that doesn’t mean you are going to listed at the top of the search rankings for generic search phrases like ‘car repair’, ‘food services’ or ‘pizza’ in your area, even if the geo-location settings are turned on for results. To improve your rankings you need to understand how to do each of the following;

  • Rank for Local Keywords – Ranking in Google is a science. If you don’t already know the basics of SEO, you can follow them here. In short, you need to create valuable content for your website and gain backlinks to your site. Those are the two most simple and straight to the point methods for explaining how rankings work in Google. The same thing goes for Google Local rankings as well… the more content and rankings back to them, the more likely they are to rank higher.
  • Create Local-Based Content – A listing in Google is great for your business, but there is a lot more opportunity if you are willing to put in the time, work and effort. For example, think about the many different things your potential customers might be searching for in Google (besides your company name). Ratings, locations, coupons, how to’s, local events… you name it, all of it can be used for potential content ideas you can create through your own site.
  • Know Your Competitors – As a local business, your competition is everything. If they have a bigger store, better advertisements and higher search rankings… you need to know! Tools like SEMRush and Google Alerts will allow you to keep an eye on the competition, both through search ranking movements and any new content appearing in Google your competition might be ranking for.

Another method that has worked for various businesses to help improve the look and activity of their sites, is to send geo targeted traffic to their sites. This type of traffic marketing will help with Alexa and SimilarWeb rankings. While these aren’t key components to SEO or determining how successful or big a site might be, they are metrics that brands and businesses do keep an eye on. Also, depending on the size of your business, this type of paid traffic can also bring in new audiences and customer to your website (and even local business as well).

Claim Your Google My Business Page, then Build Out Your Own Site

I’m all for having a Google My Business page for your local business, but don’t rely on that for everything. I always tell my audience the same thing — you want to own your own content! This is why it’s so important to have your own domain name and web hosting, versus starting a website on Blogger.com or WordPress.com. At the same time, you don’t want to have 100,000 fans on your Facebook page and not leading them to join your own mailing list of visiting a site you actually own.

No matter how much of your business is coming from local residents in your area, your online presence is of the utmost importance. Follow these Google My Business and local SEO marketing tips to stay ahead of the competition.

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Top 8 Totally Electrifying Electrician Marketing Tips for 2019

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You’ve probably taken certain cues when it comes to the marketing of your business. As a business owner, you make have taken a few marketing classes or have ideas about how a business should be marketed. For most online marketers and bloggers, they’ve become experts at what they do… because it’s what they do!

When you run a business offline, or even one that doesn’t relate to marketing, it can be a completely different world.

For example, electrician marketing can be tricky. Most of the services that are offered are similar or the same from one electrician to the next. This leaves you having to go to further lengths to get your name out there.

We’ve compiled 8 tips to help take your marketing strategy to the next level. Keep reading for more information!

Manage Online Reputation

Most businesses and homeowners don’t have an everyday need for an electrician. In fact, many people can go for years without having to call.

This means that they will be searching for your business online. It is imperative that your business is found easily and that it has positive reviews.

It is impossible to make everyone happy and sometimes there are those customers who are never satisfied. Respond to negative reviews quickly and politely while trying to make things right.

Seeming sympathetic to a customer’s complaint will go a long way in recovering their business as well as future customers’.

For more useful tips and guidance on how to improve your online reputation or to have better control over what appears in the search results when someone searches for your name or business, click here for our 97 tips to better reputation management.

Easy-to-Navigate Website

Isn’t it annoying when you click on someone’s website only to realize it is almost impossible to navigate? Don’t be that company.

Your website should have your services listed, contact information, as well as the ability to book an appointment.

Sometimes hiring a company to design your website is the best option. It’s usually well worth the money to ensure your digital presence is a user-friendly one.

You may feel that an ‘out of the box’ design is hard to come by, but there are actually companies that cater to online electrician marketing — see more here.

Social Media

It is not good enough to just have a website and a phone number. People search for electricians, plumbers, and handymen on social media all the time.

Actually, there are features that allow a user to ask for recommendations and allow commenters to tag their favorite company. Of course, a happy customer can write your name, but if the potential customer is asking social media for their thoughts, why shouldn’t you be linked?

Having social media accounts does mean one more source of reviews. Hopefully, you see far more positive than negative ones; but social media reviews, especially negative ones, still need to be responded to quickly.

Partner With Other Businesses

Partnering with other businesses doesn’t mean forming a legal partnership. This just means that other contractors have to outsource business from time to time.

Sometimes a roofer or a plumber will run across jobs that they can’t complete by themselves.

Typically, they will recommend the customer hire a certain electrician. That recommendation could gain your business a customer for life!

This is a give and take relationship. When you run across a certain job that is out of the scope of your business, those other contractors will appreciate the recommendation from you.

Find Your Competitive Edge

Some electricians specialize in rewiring old homes while some may specialize in construction.

Maybe you do a little bit of everything and can do so efficiently, costing your customers less money.

When there are new techniques to your job, learn them to make you stand out.

This electrician marketing tip doesn’t just benefit you, but your potential customers. It is about investing in your skills and abilities to allow your competitive edge to grow.

Skilled Customer Service Representatives

If your electrician company is small, you may not have the funds to hire a full-time secretary or answering service. This leaves the phone answering to you.

Whoever’s responsibility it is to answer calls must be professional, kind, and courteous. This is a skill that has faded over the past few years but is much appreciated.

A rude customer service representative can cost you business. If you, the answering service, or secretary is rude, that customer can be lost to another, more friendly business.

Be Active in the Community

Although it is great to be active in the online community, people still appreciate the real-life touch. Being active in the community can mean appearing on the local news talking about the latest, greatest wiring technique.

It can also mean sponsoring a little league team. This form of marketing is always appreciated by the team and it gets your name out there (on the jersey, posters, etc.). And, it can allow you to meet plenty of potential customers.

This doesn’t mean you have to have children on the team or attend every game. It usually is as simple as filling out a form and sending a check.

Bonus points if your company throws an end-of-season pizza party. (Hint: this can give you the opportunity to pass out business cards to parents)

Electrician Marketing and the 80/20 Rule

So far we’ve talked about electrician marketing and gaining new customers. As a business owner, you should be familiar with the Pareto Principle, or the 80/20 rule.

This rule basically states that 80 percent of your business is from 20 percent of your customers.

Once you’ve learned this rule, it is important to know how to apply it. Applying it can mean following up with customers after a job is completed, calling them once per year to touch base, or sending a quick holiday card.

None of these have to be complicated, especially if you keep a customer database. This simple marketing move can allow you to forge lasting relationships with people that will continue to tell their friends.

Best Practices for Electrician Marketing

Traditional marketing ideas are great and still work for certain customer bases. However, knowing how to navigate social media, the internet, and the need for customer service can benefit you as much, if not more than those tactics.

The one type of marketing or advertising that your business cannot do without, and you can’t buy is word of mouth. Positive word of mouth will help sell your company far more than any other marketing venture.

Electrician marketing can be tough, and acquiring that word of mouth is difficult. This is why you have to have a strong strategy, to begin with. If you’d like more information on marketing or how to outsource SEO for your brand or business, contact us today!

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5 Working Methods to Drive Massive Traffic to Your Website in 2018

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Traffic is something we all need. No matter what type of business or brand you run, there is an endless supply of traffic floating around the internet, yet there is also never enough. At the same time, not all traffic is the same, and some sources will work differently for different sites and ad campaigns.

The main reason why we all want more site traffic, is that it usually results in more customers and leads, which means more money. It’s no secret that the internet is a crowded place, so your business needs to be strategic in order to get the customers you want on your site. It’s not enough to simply create a website and hope the right people will stumble onto it.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, keep reading to learn more about how to drive traffic to your website.

Five Ways to Drive Traffic Today

Driving organic traffic might seem difficult, but there are a few things you can do right now that will help. The key with driving traffic is to stay consistent, and don’t expect results overnight. Here are five things you can do right now to bring in big traffic to your website:

1. Start email marketing

Email marketing is one of the easiest ways to drive traffic to your website. Start building your email list, and use an online email marketing tool like OptinMonster or Aweber to send out relevant information to your customer base. For even better results, set up a newsletter that also has a follow-up autoresponder series built in.

The thing about email marketing and list generation is, the earlier you get started, the better the results you will see. Even if you don’t have hundreds of visitors to your site at the moment, you could be picking up a few new subscribers daily.

Remember, everything on the internet is 24/7/365. So you if starting a new site and getting three new signups to your mailing list per day, that’s over 1,000 sign ups per year! If you wait until you have a lot of traffic going to your site, you could be missing out on a ton of subscribers and more traffic to your site.

2. Use social media effectively

If you’re looking to drive traffic, it’s not enough to just post on your social media accounts and then forget about them. If you’re strategic about how you use social media, you can really drive traffic to your site. At the same time, it’s also important to know what social platforms your audience is on, while also making sure you have exposure on each.

Personally, I like to focus my efforts on Twitter and Facebook — as those are the two social platforms I enjoy the most.

When creating your social profiles and accounts, be sure to include a website link. Google loves to rank social content and these links can also pass link juice back to your main site — to help ot rank even better. This is something I also recommend to everyone to better protect their name online, and even secure the whole first page of the search results for their name.

Additionally, make sure you’re using appropriate hashtags in order to broaden your audience. This will drive new traffic to your site, not just your current followers.

3. Use SEO tricks

In order to drive traffic, you need to make sure your website ranks high up in search engine results. To do this, you need to be getting high-quality links from other websites or blog. As often as people will say “just create great content”, it really doesn’t work that way anymore. You need to actually create great content, and then know how to promote the heck out of it.

Once you have this in place and have secured some solid backlinks and social shares, then you might be able to rely on Google and ranking for some quality search terms. Another key tip here is to create long-form content with more than 2,000-words per articles, and also going after longtail keywords.

Make sure you use keywords throughout your site. Keywords are things that customers search in a search engine. The more keyword matches you have on your site, the more relevant Google will think your site is. Also be sure to mix things up with H1, H2, H3 tags and using custom images and reliable data sources within your content as well.

4. Build links on other sites

As we mentioned in the previous point, getting external links on other sites is a great way to drive traffic back to your website. This might sound complicated, but there are many different ways you can do this. If you’re a small business, make sure your store or office is listed in online directories or other sites that locals might browse for reviews or information.

Here are some of the best ways to accomplish this, while also getting creative as well:

  • Design a custom infographic on industry stats or reports
  • Interview other experts within your industry
  • Throw together an expert roundup
  • Take part in expert roundups on other sites
  • Outsource the content promotion and outreach process
  • Invest some time and effort into 404 broken link building

Many of these methods work extremely well, simply because they are time-consuming and not something most people want to do. They do take a lot of time and effort.

Another way to build links is to guest post on other sites. There are a lot of websites out there that are always looking for content and will offer you a link to your website in return. Check out this article for some places that accept guest posts.

5. Turn to a professional

When you are awesome at what you do, and you have a service to offer, sometimes it’s better to just outsource the SEO and link building process to the experts. In fact, this is the whole reason why the SEO and online marketing niche is massive multi-billion dollar industry.

Content creation, promotion, and SEO all take time, effort, monitoring and expertise.

If you’re still struggling to get decent traffic to your website, it might be time to invest in professional help. For example, if you own a chain of businesses, you could invest in a franchise SEO expert to drive traffic to your websites. A small investment ahead of time on professional services can lead to massive revenue.

No matter what industry you might be working in, it’s best to find an SEO agency that is specific to that niche. “Jack of All Trades” SEO agencies might be ok, but wouldn’t you want an expert within your own niche to promote your business? Of course you would.

SEO and Online Marketing: Ready to Learn More?

The best way to master digital marketing and drive traffic to your website is to stay up-to-date with the latest trends.

Check out the rest of our articles on more SEO tips, digital marketing, also also my brand new affiliate marketing directory.

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SEO Tips to Dominate the Competition in Your Niche Market

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Starting a new website or blog can be very exciting and fulfilling. The only downside is waiting for your site to get a decent Domain and Page Authority score, quality backlinks, and waiting on those rankings to increase. For some sites and brands, this is something that happens pretty quickly, while others anxiously and impatiently wait and wait and often end up with disappointing results.

What gives? Well, unless you really have a good grasp of SEO, then you’ll end up frustrated and want to give up. Don’t give up though because we’re about to give you some of the best tips to help improve your rankings more quickly and also boost your motivation. If you are completely new to the concept of SEO, you can follow these beginner tips, otherwise, keep on reading for the more advanced SEO best practices and working methods below.

Research and Study the Competition

It’s good to know as much as possible about your competition as possible so that you can know who you’re up against and what you should strive for. For instance, you may want to start by finding out how many incoming links your competitors have. This way, you have a good idea of how many you need in order to pass them. Also take a look at where they rank in search engines, what keywords they’re using, and what’s in their meta tags. You can’t strive for the top spot unless you know what you’re competing for. So be sure to analyze your competition as an initial plan of action.

A perfect niche market to make an example of is the world of online surveys and ‘get paid to survey’ review sites. Just by going to Google, we can see a wide range of sites for the search term “get paid to take survey” — which is made up of a mix of businesses (actual survey company), list articles, and review sites. The main difference between those that are ranking higher than others are the Domain/Page Authority of the site, and it’s incoming backlinks. If you take a look at the list articles, you will also find that they are often 2,000+ words in length as well.

As you can imagine, the online survey market is heavily saturated due to the fact that it’s one of the best ways to make money online with affiliate marketing. If you were to take a look at any typical survey review site, you would likely find a list of the top survey sites to join, as well as individual reviews for each — which also helps with the long tail ranking of these review sites for individual survey name searches as well.

Analyze Your Keywords and Your Competitors

It’s one thing to optimize your website for keywords, but if you’re using keywords that are not even being searched for then it’s a huge waste of your time. There are plenty of free tools available on the Internet that can help you find the best keywords that are being searched for consistently. These are the keywords that you want to optimize your site for. Also think about using long tail keywords, which are keyword phrases that have 3-5 words in them. These are great for drawing in targeted, quality traffic. Lastly, be sure to use evergreen keywords which have longevity and will be relevant for years to come. This way you can always count on them to bring you traffic.

When it comes to SEO research and seeing what sites rank for what (and where), SEMRush is one of the best tools out there. All you need to do is plug in the URL of any site, and you will instantly see not only what keywords they are ranking for, but also their current position, it’s monthly search volume, a competition score, and the ranking URL on their site.

You can see an example of all of this in the screenshot below, which was done for Buzzfeed.com. This tool is great for keyword research and finding phrases that you would never have thought of otherwise. Who would have thought the longtail phrase of “fun games for when your bored” would get searched over 40,000 times per month!

Now that you’ve seen this concept in action, start plugging in some of your top competitor’s URLs into SEMRush and see what kind of unique and crazy search phrases they might be ranking for.

Write Better Content than the Competition

If you’re not writing quality content, you really don’t stand a chance at ranking very high. Your content needs to be useful and original. When you create content, keep in mind that you want something that will make others want to link to it and share it. Try to focus on How To, tutorials, and lists because these tend to generate the most traffic. If you can, add numerous supportive facts and references. Also be sure to link keywords within your content to other useful and relevant web pages. When others see that you’ve linked to them, it will encourage them to link to you which will in turn help boost your rankings. Images and visual examples like charts, videos, images, and screenshots are also very useful and add to the quality of your content.

Again, this will all come down to not only the type of content you are creating for your site, but also how you promote it. To see an example of this in motion, head over to Google and search for “how to boil an egg”. It’s a super generic term but has been written about thousands of times. You will also notice that many of the site names ranking for this term are well-known or very large sites (ie: Pillsbury, AllRecipes and Martha Stewart) — which can make analyzing the content on these sites even more exciting. Who has the best text content? Which brand created custom videos and tutorials? How is each of them getting quality backlinks to their sites?

The search phrase “how to boil an egg” is currently searched more than 200,000 times per month, and has a difficulty score of 89 (via SEMRush). With so much competition in this space, it really does come down to who has the best site content and how they are effectively promoting it.

Deep Linking to Other Pages on Your Site

Deep linking involves linking to other pages within your site (other than the homepage) from within your content. It’s important to link to internal pages with anchor text that contain at least 3 of the keywords for that page. This will not only help with rankings, but it also helps to keep people on your site longer – thus reducing the bounce rate.

Depending on how many pages and posts you have on your site, this might be easier or harder than you think. This is something you probably notice a lot on bigger sites that focus on covering every topic within their niche. If you are a reader of The Penny Hoarder, you will notice how well they interlink to other site content within their articles. Each of the arrows below is pointing to a link that goes to another article on their site, and that is only the first few paragraphs on this one article.

Deep linking on websites and blogs takes a lot of time, but it can definitely pay off in the long run. It’s definitely recommended to deep link more often to your best and evergreen content, as they will keep working for you no matter when someone comes across your content and improve the chances of those pages ranking in Google.

Optimize Everything! (Site Headings/Subheadings/Images)

Just like your meta tags, you also want to be sure to optimize your headings and subheadings. These are your H-tags (H1, H2, H3, etc) and they really play an important role in organizing the information on your web pages. You should have only one H1 tag (the largest header) on your page; this is usually the title of the page or the title of your article (i.e. if you have a blog). You can then break up sections into H2 tags and even further into H3 if needed.

Next, we have the title and alt tags that are used within images to describe what they pertain to. Again, these can be optimized with keywords to help you rank higher. Remember that most search engines now have image search capabilities. When users search for specific images, the search engines use the keywords within your title and alt tags to help them display relevant images. This is why it’s so important to use them and include your keywords so that people can also find your content through image searching.

Each of these heading tags should contain keywords that you want to rank for. Since search engines consider the headings to be more important than the actual content, it’s really important to get those keywords in there. To best explain the many factors and components of creating a perfectly optimized page, simply refer to the infographic below and this super detailed articled provided by Moz.

Just like we analyzed other websites and blogs in each of the examples above, the same should be done with checking out your competition as well. If a site is ranking on the first page of Google for a really good search term, it’s likely they have great ON-site and OFF-site SEO. Study your competition, learn as much as possible, and then be sure to implement these same methods into your own brand, business, or blog.

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