Tuesday, January 17, 2012
When trying to increase the amount of traffic driven to a website, many people turn to pay-per-click advertising (PPC). This involves a site being sponsored by another website. As a result, your website link will appear in the "sponsored links" section of a search engine. Whenever the link is clicked on, the site owner is charged a small fee for each click.
Yes, PPC advertising can produce fast traffic results as the link appears immediately. Yes, it will increase your site's visibility, especially if you don't have a strong online presence. And yes, you can control the budget for your advertising campaign, but there are a number of risks involved with PPC advertising. Before you purchase PPC advertising, you need to know the risks involved.
What's the Risk?
Although you control the keywords that are used for your advertising, the price of those keywords can fluctuate. You want to use relevant keywords, but if those keywords have a high hits number, expect to pay more. This has the potential to hurt your overall profit from the use of PPC advertising.
While PPC advertising produces quick results, they aren't lasting results. When the PPC campaign ends, so do your results, which means, if you want to keep your traffic up, you must be prepared to pay the long term expense of the advertising-- which may not be profitable in the long run.
There are a lot of fraudulent practices with PPC advertising. Because you're charged whenever a person clicks on your link, there are people who will pay others to sit there and repeatedly click on your link. This ends up being very profitable for them, but can really put you in the hole as far as income is concerned. These practices are considered to be unethical, but a lot of PPC companies don't care. Their only desire is to take advantage of you.
Sure, there are PPC advertising companies that are honest, but there are a lot that aren't. Finding a reputable company that's there to aid your site is difficult. If you're thinking long term, it's often best to stay away from PPC companies. Put in the elbow grease to increase your online presence yourself with SEO and SEM. It may take longer to produce results, but in the end, it's better and more effective.
Have you used pay-per-click advertising? How did it work out for you?
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
by Alyssa Ast
There's a certain search engine marketing tool that's rarely discussed. It's considered to be a taboo practice by many, while others support the use of it if done ethically. What's this little secret? It's called 3 way linking, a link building method used to generate traffic from sites, to a main site with the use of a third party site. It seems innocent enough, but is 3 way linking crossing the line?
What is 3 Way Linking?
3 way linking involves one webmaster, who has multiple sites, which are used to promote one main website. The purpose of the other sites is to use those sites to direct traffic back to the main site with the use of link building. In order to achieve the link building, the webmaster offers link exchanges with a third party site on the smaller sites, as long as the third party links back to the main site.
Links= Small site---> third party site-----> main site
Yes, this can build traffic to the main site; however, it won't go undetected by search engines unless the webmaster uses sites that are hosted on different servers, but even then, the approach is often considered to be unethical. As a result, all sites involved are discredited, as well as the value of the links.
So, what's the problem?
There are legitimate and ethical reasons people chose to use this method in their search engine marketing, but often this isn't the case. Most of the time, webmasters use this method to fool search engines. In the long run, 3 way linking will hurt the third party site and main site, because the smaller sites aren't relevant to the link exchanges. If any sites are caught in the 3 way linking schemes, ranking and credibility penalties will be obvious.
If you're trading links with sites that aren't relevant with one another, it's not a fair game and is unethical. However, if the sites are all relevant to one another, feel free to take part in the link exchanges at your own risk, but keep a few things in mind:
- Trust your gut. If it seems suspicious, chances are you should avoid it.
- Do a little bit of research on the websites prior to exchanging links.
- If the websites seem off topic, or just don't appear right, avoid linking.
Thursday, January 5, 2012
by Alyssa Ast
We all know it's important to optimize your web content, but it's equally as important to optimize the videos and images you share on your site--especially if your site contains numerous videos/images. Optimizing videos and images is done very similarly to optimizing content--with the use of keywords/phrases. Here are some tips to remember when optimizing videos and images:
- Use quality images and videos to maintain a low bounce rate. If the images and videos lack quality, visitors are likely to leave your site.
- When creating file names, use descriptive titles that include keywords/phrases.
- Don't forget to optimize your video with keywords/phrase.
- Utilize the Tags, META and title sections for images and videos.
What are some of your favorite tips for optimizing images and videos?
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
by Alyssa Ast
2011 brought big changes for SEO. It seems like no one was untouched by the Google Panda changes, which leaves many wondering what's in store for 2012? Although the SEO changes in 2012 remain unknown, there are a few things you should start doing now to promote the benefits of your efforts should drastic changes occur once again. And if nothing changes, utilizing these tips will only maximize your SEO efforts even further.
One thing we do know, is content will still be king when it comes to SEO in 2012. Maintaining quality content over the quantity of content won't change. Continue developing quality and relevant content that's well optimized throughout the year. Don't duplicate content, keyword stuff or post pointless content. Make sure you stay on topic to the website's niche, and target a specific audience. Create appealing content that will engage your reader to make them want to return to your site and share it with others.
You have to keep up with technology, even in the SEO world. With the increased use of mobile devices, you must make sure your content can be used effortlessly on these handheld devices. To create content that will work on mobile devices, keep the length of the content in mind. If the content is too long, mobile device users are likely to skip over your webpage and seek another. Keep the content short and to the point. Don't forget to include a Call for Action in your content to keep your mobile device audience.
You need to maintain an aspect of originality when developing a webpage. Create content that differs from others to ensure your're providing your readers with new, fresh information The same is relevant for your videos and pictures as well. Use original videos and photos, but don't forget to optimize them.
With the changes 2011 brought, many began hiring SEO Consultants to optimize their websites. Honestly, don't waste your money. Yes, SEO Consultants can get the job done, but it will cost you an arm and a leg. And in reality, it's not that difficult to optimize content and websites yourself. If you're a small business owner, don't throw your money down the drain by hiring an SEO consultant. I recommend hiring a SEO copywriter or professional of that nature to optimize your content. It's much more cost effective and will get the job done if you don't want to do it yourself.
Are you worried about SEO changes in 2012? Are you taking any preventative steps to protect your website should any changes occur?