Every business wants to be on the first page of Google, but not everyone knows how to get there. Our search engine optimization (SEO) consultants focus on increasing your online presence by assessing your market’s keyword demands and coming up with a tailor-made SEO marketing solution. In an industry brimming with competition, we make sure you stand out!
Why You Should Audit Your Digital Marketing Strategy
Why You Should Audit Your Digital Marketing Strategy
In online marketing, we all want to be the most outstanding. We all want to show up first in a Google search. You want your business to be the best, right?
Well, friends, you gotta work for it. And don’t think you’re off the hook once you reach a high ranking. An equal amount of work is required to maintain that position. Staying ahead of the game is crucial, and upgrading your skills and implementing updated plans and strategies accordingly is a must.
To implement your marketing strategy, you need to begin by auditing your current digital marketing strategy. You should do this regularly. It helps you find out what adjustments will enable you to retain your lead.
“Why Should I Audit?”
There are many reasons to conduct your digital marketing strategy audit. We’ve listed a few below:
Traffic: Your website traffic is shaky or decreasing.
Sales: You are not meeting your sales goals.
Budget: You would like your sales to increase without increasing your budget.
Social: Your social following is mediocre.
Website: You are having some technical issues and your site is not living up to its potential.
If these issues resonate with you, it’s time to perform a Digital Marketing Audit to determine how to fix them.
“What Should I Audit?”
A Digital Marketing Audit has a wide range of components. Let’s take a look at a few of our favorites:
SEO Strategy: SEO (search engine optimization) helps you to improve your ranking in search engines and drive traffic to your site.
Social Media Marketing: Social sites help consumers learn about product/brand reputation. The way we shop is changing. Americans are increasingly depending on social media ratings/reviews/comments to determine whether or not they’re interested in a product.
Content Marketing: Quality content is king, but simply generating the content is not enough. Quality content deserves to be spread so it can reach the audience it was written for.
If you’re ready to take your business to the next level, we’re right beside you. Feel free to reach out!
You may be wondering where in the world HighClick Media came from. Sure, we recently developed this alternative identity, but this isn’t our first rodeo.
In 2001, Joe Thigpen created Datagroup Technologies Inc. Offering web design and IT solutions, Joe began as a one man show. The following year, DTI built its own data center to provide high quality hosting. Since then, we’ve designed nearly 1,000 websites for a diverse range of businesses. As we continued to grow, we realized the need for digital marketing and began providing solutions to select clients. As of now, we have a team of 7 programmers, graphic designers, and web and marketing strategists providing services to clients in Eastern NC.
Our local brand is known as a regional IT provider, but we like to think big. We needed a new national identity. That’s when we established our new digital marketing component, HighClick Media, offering our premium services to the world. The name says it all. We are committed to helping our clients receive the highest number of clicks or visitors to create the highest return on investment.
HighClick offers Web Development, Pay Per Click Advertising, SEO, Creative, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, and so much more! With our seasoned team and in-house high-tech data center, we are confident in providing better results for our clients’ marketing.
If you are a business owner, you should definitely invest in SEO (search engine optimization), the process of optimizing your website to maximize organic traffic from search engines such as Google, Bing, YouTube, etc. Search engine optimization is an essential component of any successful digital marketing strategy.
The benefits of SEO are far more valuable than many realize, and for those of you that don’t have an effective SEO strategy, you are making a mistake, and I am very disappointed in you…
Kidding, of course! You don’t know what you don’t know, but that’s where I come in!
Without further ado, I present to you: 7 Benefits of Search Engine Optimization.
1. Customers use search engines daily
Over 3 billion people are using the Internet on a daily basis, and 93% of online activities begin on a search engine. There are TONS of search engines out there. Like most people, Google is one of my go-to’s. According to live statistics, Google alone processes over 40,000 searches every second. That is more than a trillion searches per year worldwide. The opportunities for your business to be discovered on search engines are never-ending!
2. SEO attracts quality traffic
Search engine traffic is the best traffic you could ask for. Why? Because people are searching for the problem you solve.
“People don’t care about your business. They care about their problems. Be the solution they’re looking for.”
With this particular component of digital marketing, you don’t have to persuade people to buy or hound them with advertisements. When they type something into a search engine, they are already interested in what you have to offer. The SEO industry is worth $65 billion for a reason, am I right?
3. SEO strengthens your reputation
In Google we trust. Seriously, people use it every day to find what they’re looking for. Having a high search engine ranking builds trust and credibility with your audience. On the first page alone, the first five organic results account for nearly 70% of all search engine clicks. The numbers do not lie.
4. SEO increases brand awareness
There is no such thing as too much exposure. Search engine optimization will help people become aware of your brand. Even if your website visitor isn’t ready to make a purchase, by being aware of your offerings, they’re more likely to do business with you in the future.
5. SEO is measurable
SEO allows you to measure your conversions and the source of your conversions. Not only that, but you can also measure the progression of your website rankings and organic traffic. With the right setup (or the right agency), measuring which search keywords are the most beneficial is a piece of cake!
6. SEO is mobile
Mobile is the future. Over 50% of internet users are searching from their smartphone, and that number is going nowhere but up. By optimizing your website for SEO, you are thinking ahead and considering the next generation of marketing. Search engines will favor your website when it is optimized for mobile.
7. SEO can help you attract the appropriate talent
Google is the starting point for someone searching for a job. You have the ability to optimize your website for a high Google ranking for the positions you are hiring for. Investing in an SEO strategy could help you avoid recruiting fees.
These are simply a tiny handful of SEO benefits. We could go on for hours, but long story short, it is the smartest marketing investment you can make. It’s a long-term asset that generates traffic, leads, and sales. Your customers are using a search engine right now, and one of your competitors is growing significantly from it. Don’t fall behind. HighClick can help you with a SEO campaign today.
Improving your Search Ranking – Good Things Take Time
“How long would it take to improve my Google search ranking?”
It’s a common question presented in the world of Search Engine Optimization. We live in the age of instant gratification, and as great as it would feel to see your Google search ranking skyrocket overnight, that’s just not how SEO works.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by SEO. A simple component of a successful digital marketing strategy becomes a dreadful task – one that you can’t measure quickly enough.
“It’s been a month, and I’m still not seeing results.”
SEO is an art more than a science, making it difficult to nail down exactly when you’ll see results. Google is constantly tweaking search algorithms, making it impossible to take short cuts through the system.
If you look at the big picture, improved search ranking is not simply an outcome; It’s a process. Being patient is absolutely necessary, because I can tell you this much: it’s going to take well over a month to see any genuine progress.
This is particularly true if your website is new. Studies show that a mere 5.7 percent of web pages ranked #1 during their first year. The average top-ranking pages were approximately three years old.
“Why can’t I see instant results?”
Good things take time, effort, and dedication. You have to consistently create and produce useful content to stay relevant on search engine sites. Google rankings are also based on site traffic, which, again, takes time to acquire. Make the necessary updates to your site in order to help your target audience find you, and then you’ll see an increase in traffic. Once your website traffic increases, you will start to see your ranking rise.
If you must have an answer:
At least 4 to 6 months of steady SEO is required to improve your rankings, and I say this loosely. It could take more or less time depending on your website strength, competition, budget and several other variables.
Rather than getting frustrated about the amount of time it takes to earn results, let it inspire you to get started! The longer you put it off, the longer it’ll take for your ranking to improve.
Creating an Effective SEO Strategy That Will Get You Noticed
As brands increasingly focus their efforts on securing an expanded customer base in social media and search engines, they find themselves contending more and more with companies outside their usual network. The added competitive pressure has made getting seen online more essential than ever, especially for understaffed small businesses that are now faced with challenging much larger companies.
If you’re overseeing a small business, your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy is a crucial factor in how you attract attention and appear online. While the best course of action is to consult an expert to help boost your page rankings, limited budgets and revenue might inhibit your ability to do so. Undertaking some tasks on your own, such as the ones listed below, can help you reduce costs without hurting your business.
Consistently Create Compelling & Relevant Content
While not groundbreaking advice, this remains the most significant, ongoing action you can take to advance your SEO efforts. The highest-ranking sites in search results are the ones that have helpful, timely information. This information should be geared toward addressing users’ questions while simultaneously marketing your business and promoting its value to customers.
It can be difficult to know what search engine users are searching for, but fortunately there are a number of useful tools that offer valuable insight into what’s trending on certain search engines. Google Trends, for example, is a simple yet effective tool which allows you to “explore what the world is searching.” There you can identify which search terms are currently trending, and even pinpoint regional variations in search terms. This can help you specifically determine what’s most important to your prospective customers.
Bing’s Keyword Research tool allows registered users to compile a considerable amount of useful data. “All query volumes and keyword suggestions are based on organic search, not on paid search or search advertising data, giving you the most natural ideas and accurate numbers,” the service explains.
Integrating popular keywords into your website may be as effortless as posting a blog or statement that outlines your company’s COVID-19 cleaning guidelines or reopening procedures, for example. Staying informed about popular searches can help you spruce up your website and take advantage of users’ current interests.
Think Outside The Google Box
Google has become so omnipresent that we often use the brand itself when we mean “search online.” But Google isn’t the whole internet! Some search sites actually have considerably better conversion rates than Google.
While you may have more users on Google, you might have more buyers on other search engines, such as Bing, Yahoo!, or DuckDuckGo.
Taking into account the particulars of individual search engines other than Google can be beneficial. Google carries a lot of weight, of course, but worshiping at the altar of a solitary search engine can translate into missed opportunities.
Search for your business and appropriate keywords on several different search engines. If you’re not happy with the results you’re seeing, it’s time to get to work!
Accurately Determine Your Keywords, Meta Tags, Links, & Hyperlocal Information
When Google changed its algorithm to exclude meta descriptions in page ranking, you may have decided to ignore those descriptions going forward. But you can’t afford to do so if you care about other search engine results.
Certain search engines factor meta tags in their results, so ensuring that they’re complete and accurate does make a difference. Similarly, keywords and high-quality links are factored in for a number of search engines, but each search algorithm may function a bit differently.
With the vast number of searches being performed on mobile devices, paired with Google’s immensely potent ability to collect user data, your website might appear in local searches on Google even if you don’t employ locally focused keywords. On other search engines, not so much.
Ultimately, spending a little extra time deciphering what affects search results from a variety of search engines can enhance your overall visibility, even in an ever-changing climate.
Don’t Fixate Only on Mobile Searches
The temperamental atmosphere created by COVID-19 has altered the way we’re connecting to and consuming internet content. That may mean that you need to revamp your web content a bit.
A recent study by The New York Times reported that the rapid, pre-pandemic increase in mobile searches has shifted back toward computer-based searches since the widespread outbreak of the virus. Which means all the attention that you (or your IT team) spent optimizing your site for mobile users and focusing on data that helps your site rank high in mobile-based searches may actually affect the way users find your business on the internet.
It’s been particularly difficult for many small businesses to keep generating revenue while the world tries to make sense of “the new normal.” But the fundamental significance of your company’s website simply can’t be overstated.
You wouldn’t neglect cleaning your storefront windows, would you? In the same fashion, your website should be filled with practical, pertinent, and prudent information and optimized to deliver online searchers to your virtual door.
When to Contact the Professionals
Managing your SEO on your own can be a daunting task. But when done right, it can pay serious dividends for your business. If you find that it’s more than you can handle, don’t give up! The digital marketing experts at HighClick Media are able to create powerful SEO strategies that will elevate the growth of your business while keeping down the costs of advertising. Call us today at 252.814.2150!
10 Overlooked Benefits of Google Business Profiles
If you’re a local business seeking to succeed in the digital age, you’re probably already using Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business). The tech giant’s extensive, listing-based platform is geared toward helping internet audiences discover and connect with businesses of all shapes and sizes.
Functioning as a kind of online directory, Google Business Profile (GBP) enables businesses to transmit reliable information about their company across the web, along with providing tools for engaging with customers (current and potential), sharing important updates, and evaluating data insights. Utilizing Google Business Profiles is a no-brainer for local businesses aiming to broaden their audience – and ultimately – increase sales.
THE BLATANT BENEFITS OF GOOGLE BUSINESS PROFILE
There are a number of clear, unambiguous advantages to making use of the GBP platform. Let’s take a look at a few:
You can start promoting your business, developing your brand, and forging customer relationships – all important goals – without having to shell out tons of your hard-earned money. Google Business Profile is a free tool that allows you to start marketing your business easily and economically.
In addition, signing up for GBP isn’t a long-drawn-out or elaborate process. Getting your business included on this free platform is an easy, budget-friendly way to start building your business.
You want to be sure that any information about your business that’s posted online is factual – regardless of where your customers might find it. Google Business Profile allows you to enter, manage, and update the relevant details about your business across the internet in one directory, ensuring that searchers are receiving the correct information via search engine inquiries. However, this comes with a caveat: you must keep the information up to date in order to reap the full benefits of this Google-powered tool.
Local SEO Boost
GBP can be a critical component of your local search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing strategy, helping local customers find you and improving your business’ search engine rankings.
Providing audiences with information about your business can be done effortlessly on one master dashboard within Google Business Profile. This offers you a hassle-free way to boost the visibility of your business online. Furthermore, GBP has its own app for easy management when you’re on the go.
Helps Create Favorable First Impressions
Crafting an accurate and comprehensive Google Business Profile listing can help present your business in the best light. By availing yourself of GBP’s photo and video upload features, you can provide your customers with the most comprehensive representation of what your business can offer them.
Streamlined Review Management
Track, manage, and reply to reviews from your Google Business Profile dashboard in order to keep engaged with customers and improve relationships with them.
Additional Engagement Opportunities
You don’t want audiences to simply find your business; you want them to connect with you. GBP provides a number of opportunities for customer interaction, such as posts and messaging, and makes it easy to cultivate relationships with your audiences.
Offers Valuable Insights
Google Business Profile provides you with insider knowledge about your business listing, delivering useful insights into what’s working and what isn’t. These insights pinpoint exactly how customers locate your listing on Search and Maps, and what they do after finding it. This will help you make any relevant updates in order to improve your listing – and, by extension, your business.
With profound insights, review integration, and customer interaction features, GBP lets you gain perspective on the online reputation of your business. Understanding how audiences regard your business will help you improve and grow.
10 OVERLOOKED BENEFITS OF GOOGLE BUSINESS PROFILE
It’s plain to see that taking advantage of GBP’s vast array of features can help you manage your business information and market your company effortlessly.
But what about the less-obvious benefits of Google Business Profile? Are there hidden perks to this service? Unquestionably! Here are ten top-notch features and benefits of GBP that you might not be aware of:
Whenever you’re offering a service to prospective and returning customers, you don’t want to overburden them by requiring them to jump through convoluted procedural hoops in order to contact you or track down relevant information.
In conjunction with an integrated provider, GBP’s Bookings feature makes it simple for visitors to schedule appointments directly through your listing. Within a single online interface, it’s also much easier for you to manage those bookings.
Research has shown that local search delivers a greater ROI than other digital marketing channels. Not only that, but local search also delivers higher-quality leads and better engagement (i.e., clicks and calls).
When you optimize your Google Business Profile listing, you’re making significant headway toward building your local SEO and attracting customers to your business. That’s a HUGE plus!
If you’re a local restaurant, salon, or other business that offers list-style services, you can use GBP’s Menu tool to showcase to audiences what you offer directly within their Google search.
Without having to engage a third-party service, you can modify menu selections, including titles, prices, descriptions, and even nutritional stats. Consequently, your audiences won’t have to scour the web for the info they want to know about your business’ offerings. Customers will appreciate the practicality and user-friendliness of this.
Along with basic insights about how customers are arriving at your GBP listing, Google also lets you keep track of which areas customers are requesting directions from to get to your business, and at a range of zoom levels such as zip code, city, and country.
This offers valuable insights into which geographical areas are being drawn to your business. In turn, this can help you design and execute your marketing efforts more efficiently. Heatmap insights can be reached via your Google Business Profile dashboard.
Offer Post Tool
It’s common knowledge that people are intrigued by a good deal. GBP offers you an easy way to market to value-conscious shoppers with Offer Posts, through which you can advertise discounts and solicit new business. As an added bonus, it’s absolutely free to use!
“People Also Search For” Footer
While you would certainly prefer that audiences take a fancy to just your business, GBP delivers simple but helpful insights into your business’ competitors with its “People Also Search For” feature.
Positioned at the bottom of your Google Business Profile listing, this footer enables you to see what other kinds of products customers might be searching for, and which other businesses might be similar or otherwise related to yours. By familiarizing yourself with the competition, you can step up your efforts to provide the best value in your field through your business.
Website Builder Tool
Did you know that you can generate a free, customizable, mobile-friendly website through GBP? Their easy-to-use builder tool enables you to create, edit, and publish a simple, yet professional page site that users can access through a Google Search to get in touch with your business. Not only that, but you can equip your site with a customized domain and link it with Google Ads for easy advertising integration.
Creating and managing a Google Business Profile listing isn’t a unilateral effort; it’s a golden opportunity to form engaging, mutually beneficial relationships with customers before you even meet them in person.
By creating a comprehensive business listing, updating it frequently, and connecting with audiences through posts, responding to reviews, and messaging, you not only exemplify strong customer service skills, but a bona fide interest in personal connection.
Due to the fact that it’s Google, GBP grants you access to a wide-ranging and internet-savvy community that can help as you navigate the tool and attempt to optimize your listing. Within the community, you can request information, gather educational resources, and find solutions to how-to questions as well as best practices.
Ingratiating yourself with Google by deploying their tools is never a bad idea for your business. In point of fact, engaging with the “search engine to end all search engines” can only help your business in the long run. Allying with Google’s virtual preeminence will help you establish and boost brand visibility.
Ultimately, Google Business Profile is good for your business. Making the best use of this tool isn’t just about having easily accessible hours of operation info or a few flashy photos on an online directory.
Harnessing the full gamut of GBP’s extensive and useful features in order to create and maximize your listing can take your organization to the next level of growth. You’ll generate new leads, develop strong customer relationships, and cultivate a favorable online reputation.
If you haven’t done so already, you can get started building your listing on the Google Business Profile website. Or, if you prefer, you can enlist the services of a digital marketing agency like HighClick Media to set up and optimize your GBP listing for immediate and prolonged success.
When you’re ready to elevate your brand, give us a call at 252.814.2150 or visit highclickmedia.com to find out more about the various services we offer.
An earlier version of this article appeared at Podium.com.
Essential SEO Strategies for Small Business Owners
Search engine optimization, or SEO, can be massively beneficial for businesses of all sizes when it comes to marketing. Whether you’re looking to expand your customer base or gain an edge over your competition, there are several simple, cost-effective ways to utilize SEO. When partnered with creative brand design and social media usage, SEO can help your business gain credibility and get a foothold in your field.
In this article, we’ll take a look at a few key strategies to help boost your company’s search rankings online in order to get new customers to come to you.
Get Help from SEO Professionals
In this age of technology, it’s essential for even the smallest businesses to have solid search rankings on Google. As more and more consumers rely on their phones for everything from driving directions to shopping, you’ll want to ensure they can easily find your business, get in touch with you, and buy products with the push of a button.
Enlisting the services of SEO professionals to help optimize your rankings in Google searches as well as on Google Maps can go a long way. The more mobile-friendly your business is, the better chance you’ll have of finding – and keeping – a larger customer base.
Make Sure Your Website Is Accessible
Not only is it important to give your customers lots of options when it comes to your business, but it’s also equally crucial to make your website as accessible as possible and to load it up with high-quality content. You can utilize several types of media on your site to make your business more visible in searches, from multiple links to videos. Just don’t forget to make sure all of your customers can benefit from them. Using captions, alt text (a written description of an image), and font options will help differently-abled customers easily interact with your products and marketing, among other tactics.
Every time you post something new, keep possible keywords in mind that are relevant to your customers. What would they type into Google when looking for your specific products or services? Try to keep these keywords as unique as possible on your website pages to prevent disruptions to Google’s algorithm. You can use online resources to figure out the best keywords and placement on your site, as well as tools that demonstrate how to write good content.
One important way to keep existing customers engaged with your content – and potentially convert leads into customers – is to make use of email marketing. An effective email campaign will help boost sales, keep your business in regular contact with its target audience, and directly promote your products and services. Connecting with your audience via email on a weekly basis helps balance your need to keep them engaged against the desire not to be overbearing.
Take Advantage of Google’s SEO Tools
One essential online resource for small businesses is Google Analytics, which helps you track the performance of your website pages and provides lots of information about your customers, such as which social media platforms they used to find your business. Not only that, it can give you valuable insights about your competitors that could prove advantageous throughout the year. You can use these metrics as a guideline for taking your business to the next level or to learn where you could benefit from changing things up.
SEO is an invaluable tool for businesses of any size, and there are many ways to utilize these tactics. Do some research on the best ways to integrate search engine optimization into your standard practices, and get help from professionals like the folks at HighClick Media who can assist you in making the most of your website, social media accounts, and overall marketing strategy.
If you need help with any of these aspects of your digital marketing, we’re happy to help you out! Drop us a line here or call us at 252.814.2150 to see how we can help #elevateyourbrand!
Guest blogger Cody McBride’s love for computers stems from high school when he built his own computer. Today he is a trained IT technician and knows how the inner workings of computers can be confusing to most. He is the creator of TechDeck.info where he offers easy-to-understand, tech-related advice, and troubleshooting tips.
Search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) are two essential elements of digital marketing. They both assist in growing an online audience, generate website visitors and capture leads. Do you know what these terms mean and why they are useful for your business?
When you implement PPC and SEO strategies, your chances of discovering and retaining an engaged audience goes way up. And the earlier you prioritize these strategies, the more opportunities you’ll have to drive traffic to your site and, ultimately, convert more leads into sales.
Both approaches share a common goal, but they have different agendas. So, what do you need to know in order to prioritize your approach? I’m here to tell you.
The main difference between SEO and PPC to remember is that PPC will not contribute to a higher ranking on Google. The purpose of PPC is to drive traffic to your site, but none of the traffic is organic.
Believe me, I know that organic traffic is something many businesses strive for. I know that you’d prefer organic traffic to “paying for a visit to your website”, but, honestly, newer businesses typically don’t have the resources to drive organic traffic to their website. Creating effective content doesn’t happen overnight. With PPC, you get a jump start by getting consumers to your site early-on, thus increasing the chance for conversion. A solid pay-per-click strategy will prompt visitors (and their connections) to return to your site through organic means, which influences organic traffic.
Search engine optimization is all about the content. Quality content will improve your overall rank on Google. Writing a blog post and publishing it on your website is totally useless if you’re not integrating SEO into the process.
Like certain PPC campaigns, keywords are the backbone of SEO. A user enters a keyword into Google and receives search results. Your goal is to be the most trusted source of information for peoples’ questions.
For example, let’s say you own a local boutique. If someone types ‘Boutiques in Greenville NC’ into Google, you’d want your boutique’s website to be the first thing people see and click on. So now, you have a website visitor. Maybe the visitor will fill out a form or visit your store to do some shopping. If they do, your search engine optimization has paid off.
Utilizing SEO practices gives your content a chance to rank well, which grows your website visitors.
Short Term vs. Long Term: What Results Are You Seeking?
Effective marketing requires endurance. If you don’t pace yourself, you’ll run out of energy. And by energy, I mean money, honey. Getting a head start is valuable, but don’t let that set the pace for your digital marketing journey.
Okay, so maybe my contradictory metaphor wasn’t the best example. Let me put it this way: PPC will offer you short term results. If you spend enough, you’ll notice more website visitors, more leads, and, with proper campaign management, more sales. But pay-per-click isn’t a cost-effective solution to building your online presence, and as soon as you pull the funding, you’ll be back to square one.
SEO is a long-term approach. Consistency + quality content = the development of a loyal, engaged audience of repeat customers. SEO is about optimizing your website for the user experience by creating content that tells search engines that you’re a reputable source of information.
For the Best Results, Conduct Both SEO and PPC
I recommend that businesses beginning their marketing journey invest in SEO while using PPC to promote your content as much as your marketing budget allows. Once organic traffic builds, PPC can be scaled back and used mainly for promotional purposes.
In conclusion, SEO should be at the core of everything you do. It’s your key to a loyal web audience. But, implement PPC early on to drive traffic. Once you pass the equilibrium point, PPC should be viewed as an add-on for special occasions. As time passes, SEO is what you depend on, and PPC is for that extra punch when you need it!
For more information on how to use PPC and SEO to improve your marketing, reach out to us! We’d love to chat with you.