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5 Working Examples of How to Find SEO Success in 2017

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Welcome to the fourth quarter. If you’ve been running your own business, freelancing or involved in entrepreneurship for a while, you know that the fourth quarter is the time to start building plans for 2017. That way, when the calendar flips, you’re ready to take your first quarter by storm instead of playing catch up. There are many different aspects of your business to address: budgeting, marketing, progress goals, etc.

In this post, we’re going to talk about SEO and how to make sure even more people can find you through the search results.

Why Plan Ahead?

It might seem a little silly to try to plan ahead for your SEO, especially since the rules that govern Google’s (and the other search engines) almighty algorithms change frequently. Even so, now is the perfect time to look at what you’ve been doing, what the anticipated trends are for next year, and what kinds of shifts and changes you need to make to keep up. If a major change in SEO gets rolled out, don’t worry: there will most likely be advance notice of the change so you can tweak and adjust as necessary.

Implement any (or all) of the methods below to see improvement in both your content creation, audience targeting and search rankings.

Schema

Schema is a specific group of tags or microdata that you can add to your site’s HTML code to improve the snippets people see on search engines. Officially named Schema.org, it is important because it collaborates with all of the major search engines to improve your ratings across the web. And it works. According to a recent blog post by Cody Jensen at SearchBloom, the service saw significant improvement in the site’s numbers when implementing localized targeting with their content and search results — through the use of Schema. Jensen reports that he has seen this happen over and over again across multiple sites.

review-schema-increases-rankings

You can see the full breakdown of this summary from Cody, here, or also refer to the screenshot below from Google to see how different sites and travel notifications are using Schema to improve their search results.

about_structured_data_markup_helper_-_search_console_help

Change Your Approach to SERPs

Typically, freelancers and business owners focus on the keywords they most want people to use when searching for their services or products. If this has been your approach as well, it’s time to change. Instead, you should be focusing on the keywords people are already using to find you. The best way to do this is to run a new and current SERP so that you have up to date information on your sites. Use this information to inform your content calendar over the next few months to take advantage of people’s’ existing expectations.

An example of how this type of research and keyword planning can help with creating content for your site can be seen in my recent post on BloggingTips.com. The article is focused on 80 different experts, all answering the question of how to create a successful blog. The end result is a 10,000-word piece that not only answers the question, it also helps solidify the site in creating content, gaining backlinks and social shares all around the existing goal of ranking for “blogging tips” and “how to start a blog” related keyword terms.

blogging_tips_for_your_everyday_blogger_-_bloggingtips_com

This same method can be put into place on any existing website or blog. It’s not so much about creating new content for keywords you would like to suddenly rank for, it’s about knowing where you are currently ranking and how to improve and solidify those rankings.

Another example of this can be seen on InfographicDesignTeam.com, where they asked 57 experts for their best content creation tip. The cool thing about this scenerio, was that each of the experts didn’t need to actually use the site service or infographics to take part in the content creation process. This is a great example of why so many brands and businesses are jumping in on the expert round up trend — it simply works!

Placement Matters

It is no longer going to be enough to simply place keywords and links on your page. You will want to start planning your content so that links and keywords appear “above the fold” on your site. These links and keywords get much better play than those located near the bottom of the page–especially on those sites that lack top-page ads. Yes, there is something to be said for placing a link or keyword organically and that still takes priority. Still, try to work your content so that the organic nature of the keyword or link happens on the top part of your page.

At the same time, it’s also important to think about the placement of target keywords and phrases within the title of your articles as well. This works especially well if you are trying to target a specific name or brand. You can see an example of this in the screenshot below. While the article is titled “Mark Dubowitz: Waging Financial War on Iran“, it will likely rank much higher for the term Mark Dubowitz, versus “War on Iran” for two reasons… the first being that it’s right at the beginning of the title and mentioned throughout the article, and the second is that it’s a very specific word with less competition.

mark_dubowitz__waging_financial_war_on_iran___provocateurs___ozy

This is just one example of how target keywords and phrases can be used within content and titles to rank more effectively in Google. Place the main keyword or phrase first, along with a few follow-up words that grab attention and cover the basis of what the article is about.

Hybridization

Are you still running your marketing campaigns separately? Do you have a social media plan, an SEO plan, an email plan, etc? One major trend in 2017 is going to be to pull each of your separate plans together into a cohesive and hybridized plan. This is something we are seeing a lot in the email marketing space lately. No longer are solutions just providing a way to collect and send out to email addresses, they are now providing full marketing automation solutions. You can see an example of this through the screenshot below, and how individual user tracking and action flow charts are quicking changing everything.

Scoring and Tagging

The exciting thing is that this same concept can now be used with content creation, social sharing, outreach, and SEO as well. There are many solutions now in place to not only make each of these components easier and faster, while also allowing you to connect to different APIs, social platforms, and 3rd party solutions.

One of the most important things to remember here, is that not only are the options for content creation and promotion automation available to you… but also that your competition is likely already using them. Those who wait to implement such methods, will likely fall behind in 2017.

Provide Value, Don’t Buy Links

Google has long been opposed to the purchasing and selling of links between sites. It is one thing to buy legitimate advertising space and Google accounts for that but they do still have ways of sniffing out paid content links. So, if you are still using this technique, you need to stop. Google is getting stricter about site links and you risk being delisted entirely if you get caught buying links to inflate your page rank. Instead, focus your energy now on building relationships and backlinks organically so that you’ll start 2017 at a great spot in people’s’ search results.

Great Content Writing

A better way to approach SEO in 2017, is through the use of original and premium shareable content. This method has worked extremely well for websites and brands of all sizes for the past several years, and it should continue to do the same for years to come. A perfect example of this type of content creation can be seen through infographics, explainer videos, slideshares and more. No matter what niche you are in, or audience you are trying to go after — always focus on creating the best content possible. When people love your content, they are much more likely to share it with their audience (while also increasing your backlinks, social shares and search rankings).

Ask Your Readers and Know Your Audience Better

It’s the 4th quarter which means it is a perfect time to do some market research. Poll your audience to find out what is working for them and what isn’t. Gear at least one of these polls toward SEO topics so that you’ll know how to make improvements there before the turn of the year.

SEO is an ever-changing system of organization and rank. Everybody knows this. Even so, keeping up with the trends is important.

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Blogging

5 Reasons Why Your Business Should Be Writing Blogs Right Now

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Blogging is a great way to get your website noticed and generate more traffic and sales. 86% of companies use a blog on their websites, so you can’t afford to miss out.

You may think that blogs aren’t that important, or that they don’t make a lot of difference to your business. But they are a lot more effective than you may think.

Blogging can increase your lead generation by 67%. Whether you’re a new or established business, this can prove invaluable. Here are 5 reasons your business needs to start writing blogs now.

1. Generate Traffic

Blog posts add more content to your website and thus attract more people to visit your site. Creating web content means that you can direct your readers to other parts of your website.

This means you can write a post about one of your products or services and use yours as an example. When readers discover this, you have a greater chance of boosting sales.

2. Boost SEO

When it comes to marketing your business, SEO is king. SEO determines where your website ranks on search engine results. In turn, it impacts how many people find you.

There are a lot of things that affect your SEO. Things like a fully optimized website and using the right links can make a real difference. Hook Agency says that having the right SEO can double or even triple your traffic from search engines.

Once you have your website sorted, blog content is next. The more blogs you write, the better the SEO. Use popular keywords and terms that your audience would search for. This will make your posts rank higher on search engines and get customers your way.

3. Create a Brand Voice

There are a lot of company blogs out there which may be interesting, but they have no distinctive voice. When they have no voice, they all blend into one.

But if you write blogs with a specific voice, you make an impression. When people can recognise your writing style, they recognise your company.

Set featured imageTry to give your posts a personality. They are more fun to read and will keep people coming back to read for more. They make your brand more trustworthy and encourage people to choose your brand.

4. Showcase Your Services

When it comes to your business, you’re the expert. You know all about your own products and services, so use your blog to show off this knowledge!

Explain what you offer and what you can do for your customers. People want brands to know exactly what they’re selling and it makes you more reliable.

It also serves as a free way to advertise your business. You can write as much or as little as you want on the services you’re offering.  

5. You Stay Ahead of the Curve

When you give your website a blog, you’re also future proofing your business. Those who don’t have blogs are lagging behind and missing out on a lot of great opportunities.

It gives you the chance to be creative and boost your business in a whole new way. You can also add other media like videos and photos to your posts to boost your SEO even further.

Chances are, you’ll find blogging very fun. Regular content on your site gives your business a firm presence and will keep you on the SEO map for longer.

Your Business Needs to Start Writing Blogs Now

Now that you know how important it is to start writing blogs for your business, it’s time to get started. It’s a fun creative challenge which can lead to more traffic and more sales.

Want to start a blog on your website? Check out our services and see how we can help you set it up.

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Blogging

Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deals Going on Right Now!

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Black Friday is always a great time to take advantage of the huge holiday sales rush. Not only is this true with retail locations, it’s also MASSIVE for online businesses and shopping as well.

To provide our audience with a selection of the best Black Friday offers on the market today, we’ve hand selected a few of the best out there. Not only are these tools that are trusted and used by thousands, they are also tools and solutions that we love and personally use daily.

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Discover how to start a profitable online business by mastering affiliate marketing, content creation, social media, paid search & more.

Starting a website or a blog is EASY.
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Blogging.org University has created “The Complete Guide to Affiliate Marketing & Blogging” to make the concept of creating an online website, blog, brand, or business easy for anyone.

In these video sessions, industry expert Zac Johnson, will walk students through everything they need to know to create a successful and profitable blog online. Such topics include finding that perfect niche market, creating a site from scratch, how to make money with affiliate marketing, and much more!

And of course, all students get lifetime access to all course content, videos, and updates.

Online Coaching with Industry Expert Zac Johnson

Zac Johnson is the Founder of Blogging.org, and has been making money online with content and affiliate marketing for over 20 years now. Having first started making money online back in the mid-to-late 90s, Zac first found affiliate marketing success with Amazon.com, then started building out his own sites and ad campaigns.

Over the past two decade, Zac Johnson has lunched hundreds of websites, thousands of ad campaigns and has also taught his students how to make millions of dollars in the process.

The Complete Guide to Affiliate Marketing & Blogging” is simply one of the best courses for learning how to create a legitimate and profitable business on the internet, while also being 100% taught through lessons created by Zac Johnson himself.

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Blogging

Quick and Effective Tips to Maximize Speed of your Website or Blog

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Few things are worse than when you click over to a new website or blog, and then it’s loading slow as anything. With everyone having an extremely short attention span, and so many options for other websites and entertainment online, a fast loading website is a must for every blogger, brand, or business on the internet.

There are also many benefits associated with a fast loading site, beyond just user experience. Google is now penalizing sites that take too long to load, and boosting up other sites that a mobile-optimized and running super fast.

Depending on how technical your design or WordPress skills might be, the process of speeding up your site and maximizing it’s optimization might vary. To help with this process, I’ve listed a few of the best working methods below.

Optimize your Homepage to Load Quickly

With the homepage being one of the most vital parts of your website or blog, you should be doing everything possible to make sure it loads quickly. Different things can be done to speed up your homepage such as lowering the number of posts on the main page, minimizing applications and widgets from third-party sites, and also optimizing your images so they are either loading as a smaller sized file or through a CDN service. It’s also a good idea to use an SEO friendly theme or template, as these are more often cleaner with their coding and already optimized right out of the box.

Use an Effective Caching Plugin

If you are using a CMS like WordPress or blogger, then using an effective cashing plugin can contribute nicely in the process of making sure your site is loading as fast as possible. Since caching is an apparatus for a temporary storage of web pages to diminish bandwidth and to improve page loading performance as well, it saves the server’s time to make web pages load faster. Caching plugins are easy to install and use. All you need to do is perform some research online to see which plugin is best for your site, then click a few buttons to have it installed right within WordPress. Once this is done, it’s usually just a matter of copying the account number of your CDN and letting the hosting provider and WordPress plugin do its work.

Use CDN (content delivery network)

We’ve already referenced content delivery networks or CDNs, a few times now. The way these solutions work is that they host a version of your site on their server, and then loads the content from another server that is closest to that individual’s location. More and more site owners and bloggers are using CDNs not only to improve page load speed but to provide users with a great experience to make them stay longer on the website. Also mentioned earlier, this can help with how well a site ranks in Google, while also moving your site above the competition. Moreover, if one of your server locations is overloaded due to huge traffic and visitors, then users can automatically be switched to a new server location to enjoy fast loading website experience.

Improve Your Hosting Plan

If you have a slow loading website or blog, it’s likely due to your hosting plan. If you are pushing a lot of traffic through your site and making money in the process, you should definitely upgrade from a shared server. Shared hosting is often fine for new site owners and bloggers, but as your site gains more attention, backlinks, and traffic, it will also likely be using more server resource. On a shared server, your site is also sharing the server resources with many other sites — sometimes hundreds, or even thousands! Upgrading your hosting plan to a VPS or dedicated hosting package can greatly improve the performance of your site as well. So, if you are still using a cheap web hosting plan with an average price below $5/mo and receiving massive traffic from search engines, then it would be the right time for you to upgrade your hosting plan with a better one to speed up your website loading speed.

Use Optimized Images

Big images take up a lot of space and resources when it comes to loading data from your site. This is especially true with very high-quality images. While these images are going to play a big role in the beauty and engagement on your site, there are still ways to optimize such large images so they load faster and put less stress on your server. There are many plugins are available that can drastically reduce the file size of an image without reducing the quality. Image optimization will not only help you boost website load time but will also save disk space for more files and media. If you really don’t want to overload your website with plugins, then you can also use online image reducer apps and software to optimize image before uploading to the media library of the site.

Minimize HTTP Redirects Requests

How and where content is being loaded on your site can also affect its overall performance. You may need to use redirect requests to redirect the web browser from one URL to another. There are a variety of reasons as to why you might want to do this, such as to specify a new URL location, to track visits and clicks on the site or to connect different elements of the website with each other. Since redirects might be necessary to enhance overall UX of the website, you should only be using the redirect requests that are most important because excessive redirect requests can have an ultimate impact on the loading speed of your website/blog.

Don’t Leave Your Audience Hanging

When browsing the internet, few things are more annoying than accessing a slow loading website. It’s hard enough to get someone to visit your site, let alone stay for a few seconds. Don’t give them a reason to leave right away because your site isn’t loading as fast as it should be.

Follow each of the simple and effective site speed optimization tips above to make sure your site loads as fast as possible, ranks higher than the competition and also doesn’t disappoint your audience when they hit your site.

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