Vape Advertising 101: How to Effectively Market Your Vape Shop Online

If you have a store, you know that advertising online is not only the way of the future, its a necessity. When looking for additional ways to show off your vape shop, this is one of the best methods to get it in front of the eyes of millions.

But how can you make vape advertising work for you? What’s the best way to drive customers to your store in a manner that’s natural, allows them to find you easily, and makes promoting your products simple?

Check out the best methods for vape marketing and how you can propel your business to the next level. Get ready to learn more.

Use SEO to Help Your Website and Blog Blow Up

Any business these days needs a website and blog. Your vape business is no exception since it’s likely that folks are looking for you no matter where they are.

Someone from out of town looking for a vape store they can get to while passing through or visiting your store’s area naturally searches for a local connection. This is where you need to take advantage of SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.

SEO involves placing keywords within your blog and website that customers naturally search for.

This can include:

  • Basic vaping terms
  • Specific brands of vape liquids
  • A vape store and your city, state and/or zip code

Take advantage of both regular and potential customers looking for items and products you sell, and make SEO part of your online marketing plan.

Use your website to focus on locations and general terms that vapers look for. With your blog, talk about new products or trends, and focus on keywords that folks search for.

Thanks to a combination of these two methods, you’re sure to get an increase in searches and sales alike.

See How Social Media Can Offer Free to Low-Cost Vape Advertising

One of the best things about using social media for vape shop advertising is the fact that everyone uses it. A social media marketing plan helps people see what’s going on and gives them a visual to work with.

When folks see pictures of the shop, your products, or anything else you want to share, they’ll feel connected even if they aren’t in your store. This can help you build an audience both near and far who can’t wait to visit or order from you, while also allowing people find cannabis products online and shopping through the available resources and items you have to offer.

Some of the most popular social media outlets include:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Snapchat
  • Pinterest

Another benefit of social media, particularly Facebook, is the fact that you can offer this as another form of customer service. Folks can message you through your Facebook business page rather than making a phone call or waiting for a response via email.

It’s a useful way to stay ahead and keep up with customer service trends in the 21st century. If your company doesn’t have one, it’s time to start a plan today.

To learn more about some of the most effective ways to grow your cannabis or vape business through social media, be sure to check out the reference guides offered by wheresweed.

Where to Start Looking for Local Smoke Shops and Vape eTailers Online

When it comes to finding local smoke shops and locations to buy vape products, people are going to start their search on the internet. Sifting through Google to individually find websites and retailers is a good idea, but it’s not very effective and will likely end up cost you a lot more time.

Another option is to look around for online smoke shop directories like CBD Hemp Finder. This site currently has more than 4,000 different locations in the United States, and is adding new locations all of the time. For any established vape retailers or locations, they also offer free and premium directory listings.

There are plenty of other online resources and directories like the one mentioned above, it’s simply a matter of taking the time to look around for the best one.

Even just going to Google and typing in “vape shops” will provide you with more than enough resources and relevant searches to dive even deeper. Here are a few that we are seeing most often:

Searches related to vape shops

  • vape shop near me
  • best online vape store 2018
  • best online vape store reddit
  • gorilla vapes
  • best online vape store 2018 reddit
  • good guy vapes

Think Of Online Videos or Live Sessions As Commercials That Can Spread The Word

Sure, commercials sound like a good idea, but they’re expensive. Instead, try making a more personal connection with your customer base by reaching out through video.

YouTube and Facebook Live are two of the most popular outlets when it comes to connecting.

YouTube makes it possible to create your own channel, where folks can subscribe and get updates about what’s going on in your shop. If you’d rather make content on your own time, this is a useful and easy way to get the job done.

The best videos on YouTube for vaping, are the ones that actually provide value and do thorough reviews on different products they sell. I’m actually surprised more smoke shops aren’t doing this… as most of them are experts in their field and are missing out on massive branding and exposure.

Facebook Live means that anyone with a Facebook account can jump on and watch, or even interact with you. Because the Live sessions are personal, many people feel a connection and look forward to them. It’s even possible to get updates when a specific channel is about to go live.

If you want to boost sales, meet and interact with your customers, and get new ideas for vape marketing, this is one alternative you shouldn’t go without. No matter which channel you pick to broadcast on, you’re sure to pick up new fans along the way.

Find Out How to Get In Touch With Industry Websites

Making connections in any industry is important. If you’re new to the industry or have never tried outreach, find out about who else would let you advertise on their website and how you could benefit. A great way to kick things off, is to take a look at the various vape affiliate programs that are currently listed in our affiliate marketing directory. Not only can you look up different programs to promote, it will also give you some new content creation and marketing ideas, while also giving you a list of sites that you can reverse engineer and start reaching out to.

Consider outreach in the form of:

  • Someone else writing a positive blog on your company
  • Running your ads on their website
  • Featuring you on social media

There are several different ways to cultivate relationships and encourage others in the vaping community to work with you. In the case of social media or blogging, you don’t usually need to pay, but when it comes to ads, you’ll spend some money.

Either way, this is helpful when developing connections. Consider it similar to affiliate marketing, with a little bit of a twist.

Your Niche. Your Marketing.

If you’ve given consideration to vape advertising, you might not be aware of all the different ways you can promote your shop and connect with others. It all comes down to making the most of your resources and tracking where you generate the most interest. Take a look at what the competition is doing, then figure out how to do it even better, and also localize and target your audience as best as possible.

You should make sure your business is accessible to anyone who needs it online just as you would in real life. This is where YouTube videos and reviews work best. These users are already in buying mode, and just need that extra push.

If you’re looking for other ways to make your business better and promote, we’re here to help. Check out our blog on how you can boost sales and ensure your end-of-year goes out with a bang.

Top 8 Totally Electrifying Electrician Marketing Tips for 2019

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!

5 Working Methods to Drive Massive Traffic to Your Website in 2020

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.

SEO Tips to Dominate the Competition in Your Niche Market

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. If you are having problems on what content, keywords or search phrases to focus on, there are plenty of useful SEO tools and references out there to help with this process. 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.

Link Building For Beginners: A Digital Marketing Agency’s Guide

Despite a lot of discourse throughout SEO communities and digital marketing agencies alike, link building, earning, or acquisition (whatever term you are more comfortable with) is still incredibly important in SEO. In this article, we will cover some of the best link building strategies and techniques that you can employ to get ahead in your niche and climb the rankings to organic success.

Link building is considered by some to fall into the darker realms of SEO but this blog will guide you through the darkness with an illuminating white hat. Not only will you find that many of these methods are accepted by all and work extremely well, many of them can be accomplished with little or no money — but instead with your time, effort and resources.

White Hat Link Building Techniques

Link building has a long and storied past in SEO but we’ll start just before April 2012 and just before the release of Google Penguin. Prior to Penguin, businesses and digital marketing agencies could essentially buy their position on Google (and I don’t mead with Adwords) with cheap and plentiful low-quality links!

Before Penguin, Google’s ability to evaluate the quality of links was very limited and relied on more basic metrics, in comparison to the more modern link analysis methods. Without going into too much detail, quantity used to matter a lot more than it does now. Since the rollout of Penguin, website owners and digital marketing agencies have had to innovate their link building tactics to create value that earns links.

Below are some examples of link building strategies that SEOs can use to increase rankings and stay in Google’s good book:

Create Meaningful Relationships

Links are the online equivalent of an offline referral from somebody who knows a thing or two about the thing you are asking about. Just like in the offline world, relationships and communities are incredibly valuable in SEO. If you can strike up relationships with people within your given niche, the reach of your website will greatly increase, as will the likelihood of people linking to your site.

A good idea is to start a forum or group on a social media platform. If you can demonstrate value within the community you have created or joined, people will begin listening to you, and (hopefully) linking to resources or blogs on your website.

Something to keep in mind here, is that backlinks and references rarely often happen. No matter how great the content is you create, one must really put in the necessary time and effort to establish relationships, ask for links/references, and continually provide value in the process.

Nathan Elly is the branch manager of digital marketing agencies and had the following to say on the importance of creating meaningful relationships.

Everyday we work with a wide range of companies and brands that are looking to establish new relationships online, and also gain powerful backlinks in the process. Not only is this something we’ve been able to help out with, it’s something we’ve mastered and taught to many brands and companies over the years as well. Even with the enviornment changing, it’s always come down to the simple practice of direct relationships and not just expecting backlinks to come in. Start a relationship, provide value, and ask how you can help other site owners succeed. This is one of the best ways to find longterm relationships and gain high quality backlinks and references in the process.

Create Meaningful Content

Following on from point 1, you need to demonstrate value – enough value that other people and websites want to reference your work. You need to ask yourself questions like:

  • What is my audience interested in?
  • What is currently a hot topic within my niche?
  • Can I produce content that is evergreen?
  • Are there resources already being linked to that I can improve upon?

If you can answer these questions and produce content that other people value and promote it through the platforms you participate in, then you will get links! Evergreen content, or content that has a very long shelf life, can have a fantastic ROI in the long term. Content that effectively answers age-old questions can bring in a steady flow of links.

At the same time, we can always look back at some of the most obvious basics to great content writing, as provided by Yoast. Yes, these are basic, but so many websites, brands, and bloggers still neglect to follow many of these rules.

  1. Think before you write.
  2. Write down the structure of your blog post.
  3. Use paragraphs, headings, and signal words.

There are a few more recommendations from Yoast, but most of these are covered within their Yoast SEO plugin when you scroll down to the bottom of any content you are writing within WordPress.

These are basic, but spending a few extra minutes to implement these into your writing can result in a much higher-quality end result. I personally have started using the “structure” tip with my writing, and thrown in ‘audio to text’, then will clean my content up afterward. With all of this in place, it definitely makes writing 2,000+ word articles much easier and faster.

Resource Page Links

Some websites have a page dedicated to linking out to valuable resources within their niche. Instead of sharing your content within your communities and hoping these webmasters see your engagement, you can actively seek them out! Google’s search engine allows for specific inputs to retrieve certain results. Using the below search strings, you can discover resources pages in your niche!:

  • “Keyword” + inurl:links
  • “Keyword” + “helpful resources”
  • “Keyword” + “useful resources”
  • “Keyword” + “useful links”

Once you have shortlisted the websites you feel you could add value to and vice versa – reach out to them with an email or phone pitch promoting your content. Hopefully, you and your content are persuasive and valuable enough that they create a new link to your content, or replace an old link with your new improved resource.

I get these emails all the time from random people and they are quite annoying — almost as much as the 50+ guest blogging requests I get daily as well. However, on the internet, it’s all a numbers game and if only 10% of the sites respond and end up linking back to your site, it’s a working strategy. If you are looking for more link building options like this one and want to put in the manual outreach, investing some time into 404 broken link building as well.

Business Directories

Business directories can be an extremely valuable link building resource for businesses, particularly for those competing in a local market. In a lot of cases, business directories are quite authoritative which is then passed back to your website. They also have the added benefit of allowing local businesses to list their business details like Name, Address and Phone Number.

In the SEO world, we call these NAP details. Having consistent NAP details across all of your online web assets (website, directories, Google My Business, etc…) is a strong ranking signal for Google in local markets. When you are creating listings on these directories, be diligent with your inputs and make sure everything is consistent.

To identify useful directories for your business, we can use some more search strings (yay) and Google. Below are some you can take advantage of:

  • “industry” inurl:directory
  • “industry” inurl:links
  • “industry” intitle:directory
  • intitle:industry inurl:directory
  • related:industry inurl:directory

If you are a local business or have a physical location, you should definitely spend some time on your Google My Business listing. With nearly all searches being made through Google, it’s important to make sure your site or business information is showing up correctly in Google — especially if it’s for a local address, operating hours, or getting in touch with your brand.

Conclusion

So, there you have it; our beginners guide to white hat link building for digital marketing agencies! These four tips will certainly be a good start for your burgeoning business and put you on the right track for sustainable rankings. This is by no means an exhaustive list but it does highlight some of the more accessible ways a business can begin expanding its organic reach through the means of link building.

7 Ways Site Owners Can Improve SEO Rankings in 2020

Search engine optimization is very tricky because each year Google is making changes to their algorithm. The old fashion techniques are no longer working as well, and bloggers are trying to find creative ways to rank their content. It essentially comes down to the following:

If you can rank your content higher than your competition, you’ll be able to drive a lot of traffic to your website. With the popularity of social media, this targeted traffic can double or even triple within a short time. With that said, I’ll be exploring 7 ways which bloggers can increase their rankings in 2019. I’ll visit what expert bloggers are saying about linking building, and what strategies they have been using to get an edge on their competition. Let’s get started.

1 – Focus on Web Analyzer tools

These are tools that provide you with a lot of interesting data. We are now in a time where you shouldn’t be wasting time building links that don’t add value. This means you should know who your competition and what they are doing to outrank you in the SERP’s. Many new web analyzer tools will provide you with loads of great information like:

  • Who links to your competition
  • The value of each link
  • The referring domain
  • The referring anchor text
  • Current keyword rank in search engines
  • And much more.

What all this information does is help you focus your attention on the data that matters. This will help you put your time, effort and skills where they matter most. But, it’s important you use only the best web analyzer tools so do your research online and start to research some of them.

2 – Optimize Your Website

It’s important to optimize your website for performance because other factors matter when it comes to ranking. There are now over 200 ranking factors and load time, mobile compatibility, clean design, and reduced clutter are all included. If your site is lacking in one of these areas, it can quickly pull down the rankings of your site as a result of it.

With a very high performing site, you are increasing the user experience, and this means a lot to search engines. This is especially true with mobile speed and responsiveness as well. Companies like Google are in business because they provide people with information in an organized fashion. Not only that, they provide people with the best information available online. The next time you are skimming through your website, look for ways you can optimize your blog it going forward by either changing the content font, color, and making it mobile compatible. You also want to test the current load speed which must fall below 3 seconds.

3 – SEO Traffic, Remarketing and Emails

With so much emphasis on ranking higher in the search results and getting as much free organic traffic to your site as possible, site owners should want to take as much opportunity of this high-quality traffic as possible. One of the best ways to accomplish this is by setting up a remarketing campaign through Google Adwords, Facebook Ads, or any other remarketing platform.

When moving forward with a remarketing campaign, it’s important to make sure you have ad creative for all sizes and ad spots possible. Digital Monopoly Perth has a great article on their site that shows all of the sizes and image formats that are currently being used for Google Adwords.

The best way to rebrand and remarket to an audience is to have your ad banners display your logo, site colors, and also a call to action that will remind them on why they were previously at your site in the first place.

At the same time, while we are talking about the importance and value of search traffic, it’s key to get these users on your mailing list as well. You can see a perfect example of how this is being used at TerritorySupply.com. This site ranks very well for a wide range of products they have listed on their site. While the average person is going to visit the search from a search they did in Google, it’s likely most of them won’t make a purchase the first time around. The best way to turn this organic visitor into a longterm visitor and potential customer, is to offer them a free 20% discount coupon and getting them onto their mailing list.

This is a tactic that is being used by millions of sites, but only a small portion of those sites are doing it correctly. Take advantage of what popup tools like OptinMonster have to offer, by creating different popups and call to actions based on the pages your audiences are visiting, and also where they are coming from. Remember, most SEO visitors to your website will leave and never come back after the first visit. It doesn’t have a lot to do with your content, but instead that there are simply too many sites and distractions out there already.

4 – On-Page SEO

Many bloggers spend too much time building external links but fail to optimize their own website. There is no point in building links with strategic anchor text if your website doesn’t have the same keywords in the title, description, and URL. You should spend a lot of time with on-page SEO and understand what keywords work best at ranking your website. Personally, I think you should be focusing on the title, URL, description, and body. In the body, you should include not only targeted keywords but some which are related to the main keyword you are trying to rank for.

It’s stated, 75% of your ranking has to do with on-page SEO so you should work very hard on optimizing your site, and content.

When it comes to On-Page SEO and ranking factors, there are always going to be debates and discussions on which methods work best. Fortunately, there are now more reports out than ever before, showcasing which factors are likely working best. You can see a preview of these ranking factors in the graphic below from SearchMetrics.com.

5 – SkyScraper Technique

For you to outrank your competition, you’ll have to get creative, and nothing is more creative than the skyscraper technique. It involves finding related content to yours which has been published and looking for broken backlinks within the content. When you locate them, you need to first figure out what you can do to replace this link. Since your searching on a relevant blog, you know you can write content which is better, and up to date. After, you simply contact the blog owner letting them know about your content, then asking them to link to it as a replacement.

Many blog owners don’t have a problem replacing low-quality content with higher quality content. If the link is broken, then you’ve increased your chance of securing that link. However, just make sure you focus on quality when writing content, and you find a blog which is related to your niche. The last thing you want to do is ask for a link for a non-relevant blog.

When it comes to using any type of SEO or ‘working strategies’, it’s important that you are still relying on new and working SEO methods, and not old ones. A good way to stay updated with these changing trends is to keep an eye on what your competition is doing, while also looking at the most recent infographics, case studies and SEO reports from different agencies, especially like the one below.

6 – YouTube Traffic

This platform has changed the way people interact online so make sure you make use of it. With the right type of videos, you can generate a lot of traffic to your blog within a short time. However, for you to benefit, you’ll have to start creating videos which are not hard at all. You can use affordable software, and many of the operating systems come built-in with a video recorder, camera, etc. Do some research on YouTube looking at what others have created in terms of video, and try to create something better. Here’s the trick,

Once you go live, you want to make sure you optimize your video by adding the right keywords in the title of the video, description, and you add a link to your blog. You can add links to your social media accounts too. Again, create high-quality videos offering a lot of great value, and you’ll increase your brand awareness within a short time.

7) Social Media Traffic

The biggest networks are Facebook, Twitter and Google+ so use them to build an audience. Imagine having 100,000 Twitter followers, and what this can do for your traffic when you share a valuable post with them. Top bloggers generate 5,000 visitors within minutes after sharing their recent content with their followers. You can also build your brand by taking advantage of Facebook Ads which is great to promote an event, brand, post or even take a survey. Social media is able to connect and engage readers quickly so don’t let this avenue slip out of your hands.

Here’s the great thing, to join these networks doesn’t cost any money, and all it takes to increase traffic is a retweet from a power blogger in your niche. It’s important to network with other bloggers within your niche because they’ll be more than happy to share your content with their followers. Whenever you decide to share your content on social media, it’s important to make sure you optimize your title and add keywords within the description before sharing. This helps build engagement too.

Getting the Most Out of Your SEO Efforts in 2020

As you can imagine, with more websites and blogs on the internet than ever before, it’s going to be tough to rank your site on the first page of Google — however, it still is possible. Bloggers, brands, and businesses that want to rank higher in Google, need to put in the time and effort to make sure each of the factors above are implemented and live on their sites asap.

Follow these SEO tips, implement them into your site, and then watch and see as your SEO and site traffic continue to improve.

Google My Business – Local SEO Strategies for Small Businesses

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.

7 Quick Tips on How to Best Optimize Your Images For SEO

Images are an often overlooked part of SEO and the whole search engine experience, however they can play an important part and proper utilisation can be very beneficial. So, here are some tips to help you optimise for the best SEO.

Focus On Quality And Originality When Choosing Your Images

Images can add a lot to the overall user experience. Ideally, all of the images that you use on your website should be original. They should also be highly relevant to the content of the page where they are shown.

There are a couple of different ways that you can go about getting original images. For photographs, you can take your own pictures using a high-quality camera. For other types of graphics, you can use an in-house designer or you can outsource them, hiring a graphic design firm to create them for you.

Ultimately, all of your images should serve a purpose on your website, providing your visitors with a good experience every time they land on one of your pages.

Stock photographs are so common that most people ignore them. Matt Woodward advises you take your own photos, on the other hand, makes it much easier to grab people’s attention when they spot your one of your photos in the search results.

If you aren’t sure where to find the best images for your site, and don’t want to pay for them, check out this list of free image sites that offer royalty free graphics and images.

Make Sure Your Images Serve A Purpose

The best images are the ones that reinforce an idea or that make it easier for users to understand a concept or a product.

Many people are visual learners, meaning that they learn best when content is presented to them in a visual format. From an emotional standpoint, images are also typically far more impactful than big chunks of text.

Ideally, you should try to add images to all of your content. Just make sure that they are relevant. It is better to have no image than to add an image that doesn’t relate to your content.

Screenshots are another valuable type of image to add to your website. You can use them to explain concepts or to help people understand how to perform certain actions. They are particularly beneficial when you are writing about a topic that is complex or difficult to understand.

In terms of content creation, the goal of images should be to serve as a complement to your written content. They should enhance your writing, making concepts easier to understand or showcasing products. They can also be used to break up large blocks of text.

Select the Correct Format For Your Images

Deciding on an image is only the first part of the process. Once you find the perfect picture, you need to decide what format to save it in. The three most common file types used on the web are JPEG, PNG, and GIF.

JPEG is the best option for photographs. It compresses images, helping to keep the file size down. Unfortunately, this compression can result in a loss of quality. Another drawback to JPEGs is that they don’t support transparency. However, when you are dealing with photographs, it is usually the best file format since it helps keep the file size as small as possible, ensuring that the photos will load quickly.

GIFs are the best choice for basic art or for animated images. GIFs can only contain 256 colors, meaning that this file format is usually not appropriate for photographs. For simple graphics or business logos, however, it does a great job of keeping the file size small while at the same time creating crisp, clean images.

PNG files combine the benefits of GIFs and JPEGs. Like GIFS, they support transparency, making them a good option for logos or other types of digitally-created content. At the same time, they also have much greater color support, meaning that they can be used for photographs, as well. Although the file size of PNG images can be somewhat larger than JPEGs, you may find that it is a good option for situations that call for high-quality images that are as crisp and clear as possible.

Check the File Size Of Your Thumbnails

Thumbnail images are a great way to give people a preview of larger images that reside on another page. For instance, in an e-commerce store, products may have a thumbnail image on the store category page with a larger image on the product detail page.

The only thing you have to keep in mind when using thumbnail images is that the file sizes can quickly get out of control. Instead of just shrinking down a larger image, you should save each thumbnail individually, making sure that it has the smallest file size possible. That way, your category pages won’t take too long to load.

Because thumbnail images are so small, you can usually sacrifice a little bit of quality in order to keep the size of the file small. Since most pages with thumbnails include more than one image, you need to focus more on small file sizes than on the quality of the images.

When filling in the alt attribute for these images, try to use different text than the text that you use for the larger, higher-quality images. Imagine how disappointing it would be if your thumbnail image got indexed by the search engines while your larger image got ignored. Some experts even recommend avoiding using the alt tag on thumbnail images.

Use A Sitemap Specifically For Your Images

When creating sitemaps for your website, consider creating one specifically for your images. Google actively encourages webmasters to take this step since it makes it easier for them to find and index images. This is particularly important if you have images on your site that are loaded via JavaScript.

You can either add image information to your existing sitemap or you can create a second sitemap that is devoted only to images. The process is a lot easier than you might think. In essence, it just involves adding a small amount of image information for each URL.

There are even plug-ins available for WordPress that you can use to easily create a sitemap for your images.

Use Descriptive Names For Your Images

When you pull images off of your camera, they have a default filename. As tempting as it might be to leave this file name, it is generally a bad idea from an SEO standpoint.

Renaming them using relevant keywords is a great way to help the search engines better understand what the pictures are all about. The more descriptive you can be with the titles, the better job the search engines will do of listing your images.

Here is a great example:

Imagine that you are selling a Hyundai Elantra. When you take a photo of the car, your camera automatically assigns it a name, which is usually made up of a jumble of letters and numbers. Instead of sticking with this original name, you should change the name of the file to something like 2018-Hyundai-Elantra-blue.jpg.

When coming up with names for your images, think about the types of search terms that your customers are the most likely to use. Then, name your images accordingly. You can find detailed information about the phrases that your customers are searching for by checking the analytics of your website.

Share Your Images

Sharing your content is a great way to get noticed. As long as you are providing high-quality images, people who discover your content after you share it may decide to link to it on their own, which can be beneficial from an SEO standpoint.

Luckily, visual content performs extremely well on social media and in newsletters. People are naturally drawn to images, making this content ideal for sharing through these channels. The more often you share your content, the more likely it is to get shared with others, helping to expand its reach. You can make it easier for your visitors to share your content, as well, by adding social media sharing buttons to your site.

5 No-Brainer Solutions to Increase Organic Traffic to Your Website

Starting a blog or a website isn’t the hardest part, getting noticed and attracting the right audience is. Many blogs and websites have gone into oblivion not because they lack content, but because no one actually notices the hard work put in place to create the website and so their posts are just one of many—hidden deep down in the archives of the internet.

To get noticed on the internet, you need exposure and one of the best ways of getting the right exposure is gaining organic traffic. Organic traffic is traffic from search engines and this can be one of the most rewarding ways of generating traffic. Before we talk about how to increase organic traffic to your website, you should keep in mind that your organic traffic would only spike if your search engine optimization (SEO) game is 100%.

The tips that we’re going to share would guide you in the right path to optimizing your website for search engines and how to do SEO the right way—which would make search engines fall in love with your website.

1. Choose a Reliable Web Host and Site Design Platform

Before you even start to think about how to get your site to rank in the search results, and the thoughts of massive traffic and cash flowing in… you need to first make an important decision on who is going to host your website. This decision will be important for many reasons, such as — every site needs to have a reliable host to keep their site active on the internet, making sure you go with web host that has not only a 99.9% uptime rating but also loads your content fast, and also to choose a host that can grow and scale with your business in the process.

When it comes to cost, it’s also important to know your budget. Most shared hosting plans will cost less than $10 a month, but if you are going to have an e-commerce site or one that you know is going to get a lot of traffic or make some serious money, it might be best for you to go with a virtual, private, or dedicated server. To learn more about all of your options in the world of web hosting, be sure to check out HostAdvice’s cheap web hosting service reviews and guides.

2. Perform Extensive Keywords Research

When it comes to creating content for your site, one of the first and most important steps prior to creating and publishing content is keyword research. Adequate keyword research will point you in the right direction of search queries people are using to find topics that matter to them on Google. Using the Google keyword tool to find valuable, popular keywords prior to writing your content is one way to attract search engines. Spicing these keywords (a mix of long and short-tailed keywords) will help you get better rankings on the web.

Another popular research method is the Ubersuggest tool from Neil Patel. This tool will provide you with all of the same data from Google Keyword Planner, but also make it more visually appealing and easier to sort through as well. The more you know about your content, and how to make it the best possible, the more likely you are to find with SEO and promoting it to the right audiences.

3. Publish Quality Content Regularly, but Focus on Quality

Yes, content is king. An even truer statement is ‘quality content sells itself’. Once you pen down top-notch content, you’re more likely to get noticed with links pointing to your posts from other websites, as well as receive social media shares. These social signals would tell search engines that your website users are finding insight and value with that content, leading to a higher ranking on search engine result page (SERP). Staying ahead of your competition by churning out quality content on a regular basis is definitely a helpful way of increasing your organic traffic.

As important as content is, it’s important to know how to create the best content possible. For example, these days, it’s much better to create an article or blog post with 2,000+ words, versus going live with different articles that are just 500 words each. There are many reasons for this, such as quality and text within one article, the ability to promote and focus your efforts on just one article versus four, and the various reports (shown above) that continually back up the claims that more words continue to rank better in Google.

In addition to creating the best content possible, it’s also important to make sure you are linking internally within your site as well. This will help with both SEO and users navigating through your site. A good internal linking system helps you get backlinks to your sales pages or articles easily. Internal links are helpful for SEO as it keeps visitors engaged on your site for longer (reducing bounce rate). All you need to do is to link to relevant but articles or pages on your website using strategic anchor texts.

4. Optimize Your Content and Metadata

If you’re planning to rank on Google for a specific keyword, you want to optimize your metadata with that keyword as that’s one of the first places Google checks. Google gives ranking preference to websites which have information regarding the user’s queries. To improve your search ranking and organic traffic, the following are highly required to be optimized:

  • Meta titles, keywords and descriptions
  • Image title, alts and description
  • Adding your target keywords in the first paragraph of your content

A perfect example of this can be seen through the content creation and promotion efforts from Canterra Suites Hotel, a downtown Edmonton hotel. In most cases, people traveling to Edmonton might not know of the name of the hotels in the area. So for a business or brand that is location-based, it’s important to know what keywords they want to rank for, and how to secure their positions in Google for them. In the case of Canterra Suites, anything related to ‘hotels’ and ‘Edmonton’ would be the keyword.

When looking up any type of hotel or booking sites online, start with Google and go through their registration process. See what is different about each of them and the methods they use  to increase conversions. I good example of this would be if you looked at the search results for hotels in London, and you see a page like (??? ????? ?? ????) — which features a wide range of rooms for booking and automatic pricing for each.

In short, know how your audience is going to search for content online, and it will be much easier for your site or brand to attain those rankings and be seen by the right audiences.

5. Contribute to Different Reputable Sites in Your Niche

Getting noticed, especially for a new website is very difficult. Becoming a contributor to popular and highly revered websites and blogs in your niche will give you that visibility you crave. Aside from getting your website in front of an established audience and potentially sending you referral traffic, you get a link back which is gold and impacts your SEO positively. Please note that guest blogging on websites with low-quality could negatively impact your website instead of helping you grow and increase your organic traffic.

While the concept of guest blogging is easy enough, it’s definitely going to take some manual work and time to find results. This means going to Google, searching for sites that allow guest blogging, building relationships with those sites, and then creating high-quality content for each of those sites. You can also find a list of 75+ sites accepting guest bloggers here.

Site Optimization and SEO is Always Changing — So Should You!

With so many different options out there for gaining backlinks, improving the on-site experience, and ranking higher in the search results, make sure you don’t just stick to one working method. At the same time, try not to cut corners and use shady methods to rank higher as well. The best way to see longterm growth and solid rankings in Google, is to create pillar content that can continually be referenced to time and time again. This content creation and marketing method worked ten years ago, and it will likely still be just as effective ten years from now.

10 Best Practices for Structuring URLs to Improve SEO Rankings

If you want to rank higher in the search results, you need to understand the underlining factors. In most cases, this is the content of your site, incoming links to your site and the overall structure of links throughout your site.

The structure of domain names and URLs is one of the fundamental building blocks of SEO. Given that you have 100% control over your URLs you should make sure yours are working to maximum benefit for your rankings.

Let’s take a look at how you should do it.

In addition to each of the key point and SEO tips below, I also commend you take a look at my WordPress SEO tips guide on Udemy. It’s a great way to get visuals and walkthroughs on what’s working best to rank websites and blogs on the internet today.

#1 Make Your URL Easy to Read

The easier your URL is to read, the easier it will be to index and search. This advice makes common sense, and accessibility has always been a large part of SEO.

The requirement of the search engines is not that the URL is perfectly clean, but rather that it is easily comprehended and understood by those people searching for it.

In addition a simple, easily understood URL is more likely to be clicked on in Google’s organic results improving your CTR. When using WordPress, this can easily be done through the use of permalinks.

#2 Use a Single Domain & Folders Whenever Possible

The evidence suggests that moving content from a sub-domain to subfolder on your main domain will improve search results. Search engines don’t seem to consistently pass ranking to sub-domains.

This does not mean that if a sub-domain is the only way you can set up a blog the idea should be abandoned. Setting up a high quality blog will create tremendous value and should be done regardless of the outcome.

However, the blog is likely to perform better in the rankings and assist the rest of the site’s content performance if it’s all together on one domain.

If you’re unsure on the difference between a domain, sub-domain and folder see this excellent article.

#3 Place Your Keywords in the URLs

Using keywords that you are targeting in your URLs is still an excellent idea. Keywords help search engines understand what your page is about and also help people who are searching using social media platforms or emails. Research has shown that an easy to understand ULR is very helpful to searchers.

Don’t repeat your keywords or make your URLs unnatural however. If there is an opportunity to use you keyword do but not at the expense of misleading searchers.

Using Keywords in URLs

URLs are often copied and pasted. When there is no anchor text in the link, the URL then serves as the anchor text. This means that using your keywords in your URL will also mean that they become part of the anchor text of some of the links which while point at your site.

Anchor text is another very important way that search engines determine what you site is about.
Using URLs in SERPs

Use keyword explorer to do your research on the most effective keywords for your URLs. There is a myriad of free research tools you can use to find out the most searched keywords to include in your URLs.

#4 Shorter is Better than Longer

Keeping your URL as short as possible is recommended. However, you do not have to take this to an extreme. If you can cut it down, then do so, but don’t sacrifice understanding for length.

A good length for an URL is between 40 to 60 characters. Interestingly enough, the issue with a long URL is not due to the search engines being confused; they process long URLs quickly.

Instead, the problem comes with the user experience where research suggests that searchers prefer URLs that are short, easy-to-read, as well as, easy to copy and paste.

Checking URL length can be laborious often it’s quicker to export your URLs into Excel and use Excel to check them.

#5 Stop Words for URLs Are Not Important

Using stop words such as; but, of, the, or, and, a, etc., in the URL is not necessary. Leaving them out may make the URL shorter and easier to read by searchers and so many people do.

Use your best judgment and try to find a balance between URLs that are easy to read and as short as possible.

#6 Match URLs to Titles when You Can

Your titles and URLs do not have to match perfectly but they should send the same signal to search engines about what your article is about.

For example, search engines are now smart enough to figure out that if you have ‘automobile’ in a URL and ‘SUV’ in a URL that your articles is about cars. They know that automobile and SUV are very similar words.

#7 Avoid Unusual Characters or Punctuation from Your URLs

Using characters, symbols, or unknown text will cause havoc on your site. It can break browsers and confuse search bots. Remove or control the utilization of these specific characters.

#8 Use as Few folders as You Can

Generally our home page will have the largest number of links on your website and so it is viewed as the most authoritative on your site as a consequence.

This means that articles that are close to your home page will be viewed as authoritative and those that are far away will be viewed as less authoritative in general.

Slashes, or folders, show search engines how far from the root domain your article is. This means you should try to avoid putting too many slashes or folders into your URLs.

This is also good advice to help keep your URLs relatively short and easy to read. When in doubt simplify.

#9 How to Use Hashes in URLs

Hashes should be used in URLs to direct users to a particular page or comment. Use hashes for tracking purposes and to provide parameters. Using hashes for tasks unrelated to these two functions is a poor idea. See this article for more details on using hashes in URLs.

Wrapping Up

Choosing the right URL can improve levels of traffic to your site and help it rank better in search engines. Follow these simple steps and create URLs that will optimize your site and make it easy for search engines to understand. Implement as many of the ideas as you can and use them as guidelines for all URLs that you create in the future. Go back to all your old URLs and review them against these standards.