Testimonials are a great way for garnering new clients. Websites like Yelp have grown an entire business out of peoples’ desire to leave comment and read comment about their positive or negative experience. Adding a Customer Review page to your website gives potential clients the chance to hear from your customers how satisfied they are. But how to get this feedback? You just need to ask for it! After a client uses your services or purchases a product, send them a quick email requesting some feedback in exchange for 10% off their next offer. In this way, you encourage them to leave feedback AND shop some more! So remember, for #feedback, #juskask!
Learning how to best utilize an SEO company is not something that you can instantly get and wield perfectly the first time out. While every bit of work an online marketing company does for you is helping your traffic and your ranking, working effectively with said company takes some growing together. Every business is different as are each business’s clientele and products. As a result, each must find it’s own particular way to generate content and traffic online.
The best way to help make this happen is to communicate what your business is and what it is doing with your SEO company. Every bit of information you share about your company can help your SEO writers and social networkers to more clearly share information about your company with consumers. If you are offering a deal on a given week on a particular product, that could be a great feature for your bloggers to write about.
Genuinely talking about the things that are being done within your business will make content at once more real and more engaging. It will also give your consumers a reason to keep coming back to your site again and again with hope of uncovering a new deal or learning about a new and exciting feature or product.
Each business has different goals in mind when it comes to online marketing. But some are not even sure what it is they’re looking for when they sign up with an online marketing company. They just want to see immediate results and make oodles of money. That’s all well and good, but you have to be a bit more specific and have a few goals in mind. Most companies fall into two categories: those who want to rank higher on Google and those who want to drive more traffic/have higher conversion rates.
Depending on which you want, there are different approaches in mind. Most e-commerce sites are looking for the latter. They want to make more sales, have many more customers visiting their sites, who will hopefully make a purchase. The best practice? Sign up for our PPC plan which incorporates Google AdWords –you know, those advertisements you see on Google when you do a search. Google AdWords is the quickest way to see results and it’s a must for e-commerce websites.
If moving up your position on Google is more important, and you understand that SEO practices are long-term, the AnewB plan will be more your style. Keep in mind, we mean it when we say it’s long-term (think months at least, not decades). Ranking #1 on Google doesn’t happen over night. It’s an investment, one that takes time through expert SEO practices. And quite honestly, any online marketing expert will tell you the same.
So consider which is more important to your business or give us a call and we can help you decide.
An SEO company like Ajax Union can offer your company a lot of things. Better ranking on search engines is of course the stated goal but the process of getting there offers it’s own rewards. One of the more important is that through trial and error and frequent feedback and corrections between the client and the internet marketing agency your business can begin to develop a cohesive and coherent voice.
In terms of marketing your business you may not know what defining your voice means but you know it when you see it in other companies. You know the tone of brands and how they talk about and sell their products. Generally this is in large scale marketing, you know what the Geico Cavemen are about or understand what the 1-877-Kars-4-Kids song says about that endeavor. On Twitter, Facebook and in your business’s blog though that voice can become much more refined. You can present your business almost as if each person was coming directly to you to enquire about it.
Finding the best way to present your business will not spring up over night. You need to have some ideas about what your company is and isn’t and a flexible sense about how best to present that. Over time your business will become a brand and your brand will have character. It is one of the best things an internet marketing agency can do.
Not all businesses are created equally so why would anyone believe that all businesses can fit into the same online marketing strategies? While other companies try to fit you into a box, Ajax Union is an online marketing company that will create a box to fit around you, even if that means cutting off some flaps and taping on a few new pieces.
We offer a wide range of plans, from AnewB to PPC management to PR & Reputation Management. You can feel free to choose from the plans we’ve already developed or to customize your own from components within these plans.
Do you feel you want blogging at least three days a week instead of once a week? Do you want two press releases a month? Want more time devoted to just Facebook and Twitter? Prefer LinkedIn ads over Facebook ads? You can do any and all of this. There is no need to feel locked into a specific setup. Each business operates differently and therefore, we want to create plans that will better target your audience and increase traffic and conversion. There’s no point in locking yourself into a plan that isn’t boosting your website. Discuss creating a custom plan today with one of our SEO experts today.
People skeptical of the power of local internet marketing need look no further than the 2008 election or our current election. The Obama campaign cruised to victory by using highly targeted, local, online advertising in swing states. They were able to create hyper specific, and thus hyper effective, ads and target them with immense precision.
Your company can do the same. Why run an ad for 100 people when only 10 are in the market for your product? When you use SEO optimized online marketing your promotions run only for people you are targeting whether that is a certain age demographic, economic class, or even something as specific as people looking for a given product.
This year Obama is going with a similar strategy while Republicans are using more traditional and expensive ad buys. They are expected to outspend Democrats two-to-one. Considering the race will be decided by a handful of votes at most, who do you think is getting more bang for their buck? Most of every dollar Republicans spend is wasted because the ads are seen by people solidly in one political camp as opposed to swing voters. Unless you have a billion dollars (and the Republicans do) you can’t afford to have 95 cents of every dollar you spend go to waste.
Regardless of how the election plays out the effectiveness of targeted online campaigning is no longer debatable.
Everyday and every night the internet is alive with content being created by a wide array of forces. Most powerful is user generated content on places like Facebook, Tumblr, blogs and of course Twitter. This content drives the conversation of the internet, invents memes and generates traffic to sources with the most current information on a given subject be it the NBA playoffs or the latest episode of Mad Men.
Each of these subjects enters into the either and some of them break out to become “trending topics.” Google Trends categorizes what is trending on the internet and Twitter side bars offer more specific information on the regional trending of various topics.
Driving people to your business’s blog can be helped greatly by utilizing those trends to help sell your content. If holidays are coming up it is easy to predict some trends but that is not the only way you can use this material. For a search engine agency tapping into what is in the air in popular culture is a great way to get your company outside of it’s normal circle of influence. Once your SEO company has started attaching your product to sports and television you will grow your web influence and your traffic.
When you maintain your website or blog, do you keep it updated? Many times people think that when a website page is complete it’s good to go. You can leave it as is and still have success. But in actuality having brand new material is incredibly important to your search rankings.
Google measures all of the website’s documents for freshness and then scores each page according to the type of search query. In many cases the newness will greatly affect your ranking. There are a certain type of keyword searches that require up-to-date text and linking. These are recent events, hot topics, regularly occurring events, and frequently updated items (i.e. “best new cell phones”).
If you don’t take the time to write up new reviews, news stories, or even just re-vamp a current page or post, you are going to drop lower in the ranks when people type in the correlating keywords. That’s why brand new content is essential for your internet marketing strategies.
Google will also determine fresh content based on inception date, which is the date Google first indexes the page. So the older the page without new material, the more stale it is considered. The more new material on a stale page, the better the chance your rank will rise again. A lot of change is better than a little change. As does the frequency of the updates– if you update it regularly it will rank higher than if you do it occasionally.
As long as you keep producing new legitimate material your site will look fabulous in rankings and Google scores.If you find yourself unable to provide consistent new material, feel free to contact an SEO company for assistance.
Facebook started out as a social tool. At first, only chosen college and university students had the privilege of logging on. Then, the doors opened to all students. Eventually, anyone with a valid email address could join the soon-to-be number one social network. But Facebook for business?
Facebook facilitates public and private communication, media sharing, collaboration, idea swapping and more. And while this all sounds very social, what is at the base of marketing if not communication and the sharing of both media and ideas? With Facebook, individuals market themselves all day everyday. Like most social media, Facebook allows users to present an ideal version of themselves to the world. How is marketing any different? It turns out, Facebook is the perfect conduit for online marketing.
Whereas individuals using Facebook acquire more and more “friends,” businesses utilizing Facebook try to earn “fans,” which translates as people who “Like” the page. Although the terms differ, the concept is essentially the same. Status updates and other posts become viewable to friends and fans alike. The only major difference between the two is that for the individual user, the “friend count” is just a number. But for the Facebook business page, number of “likes” is significant. The more “likes” a business page has, the more traffic that page will get from other Facebook users and through search engine traffic.
Friending someone on Facebook says, “I know you, I remember you, I like you,” or, in a more stalker-like fashion, “I like you, I want to know you.” Liking a Facebook business page says exactly the same thing, and it helps the business, to boot. So how do you get more “likes?”
Ajax Union has developed strategies for increasing the number of Facebook “likes” your business page has by linking Facebook ads with contests. Get in touch with one of Ajax’s marketing consultants to learn more about how Facebook can boost your online presence. And check back tomorrow for Facebook Marketing’s latest Top Ten list.
Google Search has recently evolved to include two important concepts: authorship and ownership. These allow site authors and owners to verify the credibility of blog posts, articles, and other content, a factor Google is considering increasingly important. In other words, a verified blog post is going to have a big advantage, rankings-wise, over Random Blog Post X.
So let’s get verified.
Author Information on Google+
Google Support outlines two methods for confirming authorship. The easiest way involves confirming using an email address:
STEP 1: Include your full name, ideally linking to your email address, on every page of content you’re trying to verify.
STEP 2: Verify your email address on your Google+ profile.
1. While editing your Google profile, select Contributor and add the URLs of the sites you write for.
2. In the Work box, click “New contact info” and add your email address.
3. You’ll then see a link you can click to send a verification email to the specified address.
Note: If you write under multiple email addresses, you’ll have to do this for every email.
STEP 3: Let Google know via this form. You can ignore the checkbox about the markup, as this is only required in the second, more complicated method of verifying things.
Verifying Your Google+ Page (Ownership)
STEP 1: Link your Google+ page to your site. Quoth Google: Edit your profile and add your URL as a custom link.
STEP 2: Link your site to your Google+ page.
Ah, symmetry. Unfortunately, this part is also bizarrely confusing and somewhat contradicts with Google’s own badge instructions. Blind Five Year Old’s Google Plus SEO guide really helped me out here.
You basically want to link to your Google+ page from you homepage using a rel=”publisher” tag, and to do so only on your home page (not in the header or anything).
The link should look like this:
<a href="YOUR PROFILE URL" rel="publisher">My Google+ Page</a>
BFYO recommends testing out your link add-age via the Rich Snippets Testing Tool. (PS: The alternative authorship method involves adding a rel=”author” tag to your content, if you want to be a punk about it.)
STEP 3: Get 1000 people to add your Google+ page to their circles. What??? Yeah, this part is hard. It might take some effort on your part — adding your page to your signature, emailing your contacts, recruiting pals from Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn. But it’s probably worth it.
STEP 4: Submit a verification request via this form.
And the abracadabra, you’re all set!
This is a follow-up blog for the recent free Google Plus Social Media Webinar our SEO company hosted yesterday. For information on our upcoming webinars, visit AjaxUnion.com/webinar.
Search Engine Optimization can be tricky business if you do it yourself, so many organizations hire a company like ours to do it for them. But get this! Hiring the RIGHT SEO company can be tricky business too. Luckily, Google has tips for hiring an SEO company that gets the job done right and isn’t up to any funny business.
See the full list with detailed descriptions at Webmaster tools: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35291
- No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google.
- Be careful if a company is secretive or won’t clearly explain what they intend to do.
- You should never have to link to an SEO.
- Be sure to understand where the money goes.
Small bakery burned by Groupon
If you aren’t familiar with deal-of-the-day websites like Groupon and Living Social, here’s your chance to get acquainted. These types of websites feature discounted gift certificates for use at local or national companies. Everyday, new discounts become available, and you have a time period during which the opportunity to purchase persists. Living Social and Groupon also features “Getaways” or “Escapes” and “Instant” or “Now” deals which are discounted vacation packages and short-time-frame coupons, respectively.
Groupon’s business model profits by splitting the cost of the Groupon (group+coupon) with the business offering the deal. The Groupon only goes live if a predetermined number of consumers purchase the deal.
For example: a nail salon offers a Groupon – $10 for a manicure valued at $20 with a group-size minimum of 30 people. Thirty people purchase the Groupon, so the deal goes live. The nail salon splits the proceeds of the deal with Groupon, earning a fraction of the service’s value. In this case, the nail salon will earn roughly $5 for every $20 manicure they sell. Ideally, companies partnering with Groupon will see their R.O.I. because they garner new repeat customers after persuading people to try out their product or service.
This is all good and fine, until business don’t realize the dangers in failing to set up the daily deal appropriately. You don’t want to end up like the owner of a British baker who found herself with orders for cupcakes totaling over 100,000: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/45398235/ns/world_news-europe/#.Ts0BDWMpCrt.
If Groupon is in your future, do your research, and follow this advice from Inc.com :
Ajax Union and Google have teamed up to educate business owners about the power of Google’s tools, strategies and services for successful online marketing. The next monthly seminar is scheduled for Nov. 22nd at 6 PM at the Brooklyn Networking Center. Visit http://googleseminar1122.eventbrite.com/ for more information. Use the discount code “AjaxBlog” for 25% off ticket price.
At the seminar, attendees will learn about how to:
Get Found Online
Help Customers find your business or office online with Google Places
Help promote your business with ads on Google search and the Google Network.
Analyze website traffic to identify critical information regarding your website and business.
Reduce costs and become more productive at the office.
Check out Ajax Union’s very own Tim Duffy in the web series that will leave America’s residents with side stitches — from laughing so hard.
Think about. What does Nike mean to you? Or Levis Jeans? Or Ajax Union? The Nike brand stands for a certain lifestyle; one of ambition, competition and success. The iconic Nike swoosh, their catchphrase “Just Do It,” and the ubiquitous print advertisement of a runner hitting the open road all conjure the image of an independent and driven athlete destined for success. Nike is serious about athleticism, and everything about Nike’s corporate identity says that. You can buy a pair of quality running shoes from a million different companies, and most of them cost less than Nike sneakers. But when you purchase Nikes, you purchase the Nike lifestyle.
What do Levis stand for? Rugged America, independence and practicality.
Tangeray? Sophistication, class, intrigue.
Ikea? Modernity, quirkiness, affordability.
Ajax Union? Nerdiness!
Whatever you call the character behind a trademark — corporate identity, branding or marketing — the attributes associated with a business or organization consist of a combination of several elements. Logo, colors, uniforms, advertisement style, public relations style and attitude all lend to brand development. Of course, some companies work harder toward branding their company like a lifestyle, while others settle with a company logo.
The bottom line, however, is that American consumers quickly develop brand loyalty, and without a solid, well-defined brand, to what company will they pledge loyalty?
A robots.txt file gives instructions to web crawlers and web robots designating which parts of a public website should be accessed by the web crawler/robot. This system is dependent on the cooperation of the web crawler; not all crawlers/robots heed the access/non-access requests. This function is used for various reasons, for example, webmasters might implement robots.txt for a page with content irrelevant to a website’s search engine presence in order to prevent inaccurate search engine listing. For the most part, however, you don’t want to deny web crawlers access to your site. It’s bad for SEO.
Oftentimes, search engines use web crawlers to optimize search engine results. These web crawlers are used to review site content and determine a website’s relevance to specific keyword searches. In short, web crawlers are partially responsible for search engine results, which they base on their perusal of HTML. Sometimes robots.txt files keep websites out of search engine results altogether. Be wary of the “Disallow: /.”
The robots.txt file modifier “Disallow: /” instructs cooperating web crawlers not visit any pages on a website. If search engine web crawlers don’t crawl through your website, then they do not collect any data. If they don’t collect any data, then they can’t index your website as related to any search engine keywords. If they don’t index your website, then your website will never turn up in search engine resutls. The presence of “Disallow: /” in your robots.txt HTML is like placement on the search engine black list. Unless someone knows your precise URL, no one is going to be finding your website.
How do I check for “Disallow: /?”
Finding the dreaded “Disallow: /” in your HTML is easy. Simply right-click on your web page and go to “View page source.” Then, use the Find function (hit CTRL-F) to search for “Disallow.” All robots have been excluded from your website if you find:
Luckily, all you need to do is remove that final forward slash (/) and all robots will be allowed complete access. Visit http://www.robotstxt.org/robotstxt.html for more information.
Watch his instructional video about robots.txt for more informatoin about the use and abuse of robots.txt.
Ajax Union is the ideal company for Fox’s “Small Business Spotlight,” as small businesses can benefit hugely from the services Ajax Union offers. At Ajax Union, we are in the business of bringing fellow businesses continued success with our industry-tested marketing campaigns.
Not only do Joe and Zevi appear on TV, but the entire staff, nearly 50 people deep, gets its five seconds of fame with a group photo showcasing our diverse group.
Check out the footage below!
The key to successful utilization of social media is fresh, relevant content. Frequent content generation is fundamental to successful online marketing, SEO and social media presence.
If you are a business that wants more people to visit your website in order to achieve more sales, social media platforms are a critical tool. Through sites like Facebook, Twitter and FourSquare, businesspeople can link a network of potential customers to their company webpage. Importantly, the nature of these social sites is about sharing media. If you tweet about a sale at your store, and two people read it and tweet that they are on their way to your store, and two of their friends retweet about it, in no time, 100 people will show up at your shop with a great sale on their mind. Social media transmits information exponentially. It’s like a snow ball of success.
You can mix it up, too. Post short blogs, articles, photographs, videos or links to related content. The more content you generate that links back to your website, the more success you will find.
This is a country of smart shoppers. Very few people make a purchase anymore without first googling the company they wish to purchase from. Any business that is on top of their game can use this to their advantage. If you know potential customers are going to be googling your name, why not provide them with creative content updated on a regular basis? In this way, you maintain some control over what potential customers learn about you.
If you aren’t familiar with Meetup.com, it’s time to be. This social media site facilitates offline get-togethers for groups of people with common interests and goals. It’s the most popular site of its kind and quite brilliant, INMHO. Meetup is free, easy-to-use and invaluable for all types of online and offline networking.Meetup combines and streamlines the basic concepts of Facebook’s events and groups, and then adds filters to help users find local groups with desired attributes. So, if a person is opening a French bistro in Midtown and wants to network with local restaurant owners for business advice, he or she can find a Meetup group related to the Food & Beverage industry in the New York area. Upon joining the Meetup group, the aspiring bistro owner receives invitations to local gatherings created specifically for restaurant owners, and he learns how to succeed in business!It’s great for small- to mid-sized business owners and entrepreneurs who primarily conduct local business.
In case you’re curious, I made a list of the Top 10 Most Popular Meetup Groups in NYC. Based on my findings, groups intended for general professional networking get the most members. After that, professional networking groups targeting a certain demographic are popular. “Black Professionals…,” “Young Lesbians…” and “Women INspiring…” are popular, as well as a group about learning Japanese and drinking sake. Interesting….
1,913 Smart Networkers
1,664 Black Professionals
952 Lesbian Professionals
765 Inspirational Women
686 Japan Club Members
678 People interested in CSR
518 Social Media Networkers
475 Funders & Founders
There are a good number of social media boo-boos that can leave your business chilly. Owning a business is great and marketing it properly online is even greater. Let’s take a look at the top four, shall we?
#1: A Generic or Nonexistent Website
In order to take full advantage of online marketing you should have a website with an appealing design driven by SEO. Using appropriate keywords and personalized meta and HTML content you can get a unique and approachable site does well with page ranking in search engines. Poorly designed pages do not do as well as a site designed tailored to your marketing needs.
#2: Not Having A Social Media Plan
Being realistic, pop culture is now run by social media and online networking. How you use Twitter, Facebook, and social bookmarking sites can affect your success. Effectively marketing means having a well-coordinated plan with goals for each week. Generating content and conversation through these sites drums up business and interest.
#3 Not Finding A Balance
You want to create content that is both interesting and effective. There should be a balance between promotion and information. OnSite and blog content should not only engage the reader but also increase search engine rankings. Spamming is not fun for web surfers but having content that won’t promote site crawling is just as ineffective.
#4 Ineffective Branding
PR can do a lot for representing your company the way you want. If you enhance your online credibility through press releases, promotional work for discounts and new products, and showcasing your mission statements you’ll be much better off.
Ajax Union can provide you with all these benefits and done well. You can have a team of writers and web designers there to take care of all of these concerns for you. You can even have your plans tailored to fit your needs.