Social Media and Site Performance: Here’s How and Why Your Search Marketing Strategy Needs to Include Social and Quality Content, Despite what Google and Others Claim

It’s true that search engine optimisation is just one piece of the internet marketing pie and that there’s much more required for online domination than rising to the top of the search engine rankings.  Social media plays a vital role, allowing businesses to interact with existing and prospective customers, popularising their brands and presenting the ‘human element’ that’s necessary for building trust and authority in an industry.

But, as Google and others have claimed, social media activity doesn’t actually have a direct influence on rankings, meaning  their algorithms don’t use social to determine a site’s position in the search rankings. Now, before you jump up and down with excitement, thinking that your days of tweeting and Facebook posting are over,  social media combined with quality content can and will affect your site’s performance. Here’s how:

Social Activity: the Bull’s-Eye Your Search Engine Marketing Strategy Needs to Stand Out

Even though Google and Bing representatives recently reiterated at SMX London that their search algorithms don’t use social media activity, or a lack there of, to determine a site’s place in the rankings, they did say that when content receives several Facebook Likes, is pinned repeatedly or shared in any other way through available social media channels, search engine bots are drawn to the activity like bees to honey. This, in effect, can cause a page on a site to be indexed faster than a page that lacks social media ‘buzz.’  

But that’s not all. If a page is shared repeatedly through social media, it’s not a stretch to assume that people who find the content valuable will link to it from their own sites or make other references to it online. This, in effect, adds to the web of links leading to the site where the content originated. Google and Bing representatives alluded to the fact that the search engines actually use the number of social references to determine if such links are quality, something which is beneficial to a site’s overall performance, especially in a post-Penguin world.

What this Means for Your Search Marketing Efforts

In short, continuing to produce high quality content that’s worthy of being shared with people’s followers and connections  in places like Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest will enhance your search engine marketing efforts and help position your website for success online. If you haven’t added a social media component to your search marketing strategy, you’re already behind the eight ball, at least  as far as establishing trust and authority. With confirmation from the search engines that social matters in more ways than one for your site’s online performance, the need for a tailor-made social campaign is just that much more urgent.

For information on how to turbo-boost your search engine marketing strategy with a cutting-edge social strategy, call us on 1300 88 55 57.

A Recent Video from Google’s Matt Cutts Proves that Ranking Well Requires a Multifaceted Search Engine Marketing Strategy

“If you build it, they will come.” Wouldn’t it be nice if all you had to do to drive more traffic and boost your site’s rankings was write and publish quality content? When we tell our clients, over and over, that they’ve got to be producing good quality content on a regular basis if they want a hope in hell of reaching those top spots in the search engine results, I sometimes think a general lack of search marketing knowledge prevents them from seeing the big picture and expectations are misinterpreted.

Yes, you’ve got to write information-packed blog posts and ensure your site has a wealth of good quality, relevant content, but it’s not enough to stop there. Successful search engine marketing is a carefully designed and executed, multifaceted approach. One of the most recent videos put out by Google’s Matt Cutts only supports this claim and demonstrates that without having a finger on the pulse of the search marketing world at all times, writing interesting blog posts or producing the odd video and just crossing your fingers won’t be enough to achieve the types of search marketing results you want and your business needs.

Cutts Explains how Google ‘Judges’ the Quality of Pages that Don’t Have Links

Even though some would still argue that link building is dead, the fact that Cutts recently explained that Google’s bots would have difficulty determining the quality of a page that didn’t have links demonstrates there is still a place for link building in search engine marketing. Yes, the old way of building a web of links to and from any site, no matter how dodgy is dead, but Google still relies on the  presence of links to determine a page’s relevancy for searches using specific terms.

Without links, Cutts explained, Google resorts to the keyword term(s) used in the copy, and the frequency with which those terms appears signifies whether or not the page is about a particular term. The problem, however, is that unless the terms you target, and those appearing in the link-less page of content, are actually being searched by someone, ranking number one for that word or phrase will mean squat.

Solution to the Link-less Page and Other Search Marketing Conundrums

While Cutts tries to explain that the solution for preventing pages without links from being utterly ignored by Google is to produce content on topics so original that your site will rank in first place for those terms by default alone, this type of search engine marketing approach will more than likely deliver little in the way of traffic and even less still in the way of targeted buyers.

Just think about it: Sure, a blog post on why koala shaped napkin rings would make a nice hostess gift might rank well for terms like ‘koala’ and ‘napkins,’ but I doubt few people are looking for such products or that the kid searching for information on koalas for his school project will find your kitchen supply store useful.

The solution to this quandary, which is a common challenge for new websites, is taking a multifaceted search engine marketing approach that includes the following:

  • the building of quality links, according to a natural link profile
  • careful keyword research
  • quality content that uses the right number of a specific set of keyword terms in order to convey a theme to Google, produced and published regularly
  • sharing content and interacting via social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

Still think you can take your site to the top without a search engine marketing strategy? Google and others have made it virtually impossible for people to take the ‘cross your fingers and wait’ approach, even if they try to claim that the way to rank well is to produce quality content and wait for the ‘flood’ of people who will naturally stumble upon the page.

If your business doesn’t have the luxury of waiting around or taking a chance, call us to learn more about the calculated search engine marketing strategy that will take you to the top: 1300 88 55 57.

If Your Site is Light On Quality Content, Google’s Latest Algorithm Update, Panda 4.0, Should Motivate You to Re-think Your Web Strategy

In the newsletter we send out to our clients every month, content is a recurring topic. While we started out by recommending to our clients that they make regular blogging a focal point of their web strategy going forward, we’ve now resorted to a much more blatant form of suggestion, otherwise known as verbal assault, in an attempt to urge them to step-up their content creation efforts.

I get it, not everyone likes to write and most business owners don’t have extra time to devote to blogging. But, if writing and posting quality content on a regular basis was an important factor for ranking well in Google before, Panda 4.0 will ensure that all those who drag their heels and don’t incorporate regular blogging and other forms of content creation into their online strategy won’t have a hope in heck of ranking well in the future.

What’s Changed with Panda 4.0?

With every update that’s rolled out, Google is attempting to better their users’ experience by providing search results that best match keyword searches. Now, content that’s considered spammy or just plain low-quality has always been on Google’s hit list, but Panda 4.0 seeks to reward those sites that contain lots of quality content by moving them up the rankings, and to punish those whose web strategy has neglected content creation with a bump down in the search results.

Now, while I’m sure there are many who have seen a drop in rankings since Panda 4.0 was unleashed, the opposite could also be true; a site with an online strategy that’s particularly strong on the content front, but that may have ranked lower in the past because of other factors, such as on-page issues, could actually see a nice boost in rankings from Panda’s update.

Whatever side of the coin your site is on, the fact of the matter is that Google continues to make it abundantly clear that a web strategy where content doesn’t play a big role is destined to fail.

Panda-Proofing Your Web Strategy

Even if your site’s rankings have suffered a blow, there’s no time like the present to revise your web strategy and to bring it more in-line with what Google continues to make clear–content is, and will continue to be, king.

Here are a few points to consider:

  • Commit to adding at (the very) least two new posts to your site’s blog, every month. If your site still doesn’t have a blog, your web strategy is in major need of an overhaul–get blogging!
  • Posts that are less than 500 words in length aren’t as valuable as longer, quality posts.
  • Use a good mix of the best keywords for your market in the content you post on your site, only wherever it makes sense to do so. Statements like the following will get you nowhere but down:  ‘With coffee roasters Brisbane, the freshest beans are at…’
  • Consult with a team of professionals to see where it is that you lack, as far as quality content goes. With a thorough audit, you may discover that it’s not just your site’s blog that’s lacking content, but that what’s missing from your web strategy are additional site pages packed with the content your visitors are looking for.

If your site’s rankings have been rocked by Panda 4.0, get in touch with us to learn how to improve your online strategy so that future updates feel more like bumps in the road and not bottomless potholes. Call us on 1300 88 55 57.

Build Your Business’ Brand Using Local Directories and Other Proven Tactics

Just because you own a small, local business doesn’t mean you can’t create a powerful brand that people within your market recognise immediately. Often, when we think of branding, the mega corporations come to mind because, let’s face it, their big budgets mean the sky is literally the limit when it comes to business advertising. Local businesses might not have the luxury of competing with the branding tactics employed by the likes of Coke or Apple, but there are still many things they can do to create a brand that’s widely-known and trusted.

Well-Branded Local Businesses Sell Products and Services with Ease

It’s true; those small businesses that employ local directories and other forms of online business advertising, which I’ll describe in greater detail below, have a much easier time selling their products and services than those local businesses that are not as well-known. Just think about it, when someone sees the Apple logo, it immediately brings to mind the products they offer and what the company represents. If someone is considering buying a new phone, which one do you think they’ll feel more confident buying? A phone by a little-known manufacturer or the iPhone?

So the key, then, is to focus your efforts on building your brand in the short term so that your logo and brand can do all the business advertising for you, in the future. Here’s how:

Create Citations in Local Directories–Be Found, Everywhere!

Most local businesses now know that having a presence in local directories online is pretty crucial. After all, these locally-focused results are what rank at the top in Google when  people from the area search for businesses or suppliers in their communities. When you consider that creating a listing in most of the relevant business directories is free, takes little time to do and has a considerable upside, this is an area of business advertising that’s worthy of your company’s attention. Brand building requires you to get your brand out in front of as many people in as many places you can, and local directories are an easy way to do just that.

When creating your listings in local directories, there are some things to keep in mind so as to maximise your brand’s reach. Check it out:

  • Use the same logo in all of your company’s listings in local directories
  • Add pictures whenever and wherever you can–business advertising that incorporates images of the people behind a brand or the workplace environment is more trusted than advertising that doesn’t include these types of visuals
  • Wherever possible, add short videos that also feature you and your staff to your listings in local directories. Doing so reassures potential customers that you are who you say

Consistency is Key in Business Advertising that Benefits Your Brand

The whole point of creating a brand is so that people know immediately what the company offers when they see their logo or business advertising. When listings in local directories contain different contact details, logos or images, it confuses those who see it and leads them to second guess whether they should contact you or visit your location. How you interact with local customers via social media should also be consistent, meaning the photos and videos you share, how you portray your company and its values should be the same across the board, whether you’re Tweeting or posting in Facebook to Instagram or interacting through your Google+ profile. When people know what they can expect from you and your company, that’s when you’ve got a brand that does most of your business advertising for you.

Manage Your Business’ Online Reputation

Getting people from your local community to interact with you via your brand’s listings in local directories or in social media is an effective way to solidify your brand in the minds of your prospective customers. Encouraging those who have already purchased your products or services to review your business is one way to give your brand greater authority and to build trust. But, not every review will be positive and it’s equally important that you quickly and tactfully respond when someone leaves a less-positive review.  Doing so will show others in your community that your brand is synonymous with quality service and customer satisfaction.

Local businesses, no matter how big or small, need to popularise their brand across the web if growth is their goal. Utilise the local directories and other free business advertising platforms that are readily available to make your brand the ‘Coke’ of your local area.

For more information on branding, or any other internet marketing query, please call 1300 88 55 57 or email us here.

Adding Instagram to Your Web Marketing Strategy? Put these Tips into Action for the Best and Biggest Results 

Instagram web marketing

Do you secretly love to take selfies? Good! As I explained last week, your photo-snapping past time can be put to good use when you add Instagram to your business’ web marketing strategy.

This week, I’ll share a few more ways you can and should use this social media platform to popularise your brand and bring more business to your door.

Instagram Hashtags and Small Business Marketing

Just when you thought those pound-sign-led terms couldn’t find their way into any other part of your life, Instagram gives them yet another place to call home. Utilise the power of the hashtag to draw attention to your brand’s profile by attaching industry-related or relevant tags to the visuals you share.

What’s an example of how hashtags can benefit your greater digital marketing effort? Tag the images you take at a major fundraiser so that anyone in attendance can easily locate your pictures and reconnect with you or your brand via your Instagram profile, after the fact.

A couple of things to keep in mind when choosing hashtags: Keep your tags as relevant and specific as possible. Doing so will not only make it easier for others to find your images, which is the goal if you’re using Instagram as a web marketing tool, but it will also allow you to discover other hashtags that you may not have even thought of but that are actually much more popular than your originals.

Video Shared via Instagram

Give a little juice—for free—to your small business marketing by taking short videos and sharing them on Instagram. You don’t need fancy equipment or an in-depth topic to record a video that could be a web marketing asset.

Take short videos where you or a staff member describes the exciting launch of an awesome new product, an upcoming special promotion or the grand opening of a new location. The sky is really the limit when it comes to topics and Instagram is the perfect place to keep existing and prospective clients informed and intrigued.

Create a Profile that Demands Attention

There are many ways to optimise your Instagram profile so that it’s an effective representation of, and web marketing platform for, your brand. Be sure to include the obvious items like your website’s URL and logo, as well as a good description of the goods or services you provide. The less-obvious but equally as effective things you can do are work your company’s logo into the photos you take, tag your customers in your pictures to keep the conversation flowing, and make use of the space for captions to reach out to or inform your clients.

It’s not difficult to see that the small business marketing tactics that are the most valuable are those that cost little or nothing and still have a big upside when it comes to the exposure they can offer. When you consider that Instagram requires such a small investment of time and yet it can be used to not only attract the attention of new clients and drive more prospects to your website, but is also a great way to keep existing customers engaged, including Instagram in your digital marketing strategy seems like a no-brainer.

For more information on this or any other social media marketing tactic, call The SEO Company on 1300 88 55 57.

Adding Instagram to Your Internet Marketing Mix: Easy Steps to Take Action Now

internet marketing and instagram

I know, you’re probably cringing at the thought of adding yet another social media platform to your internet marketing repertoire. But, with this being the year that, according to many marketing gurus, visuals will be the key to improving marketing reach and effectiveness for small businesses everywhere, dedicating a bit of time each day or week to Instagram seems like a smart business move and a small sacrifice.

Instagram Rises Above Other Social Media Platforms and is Quickly Becoming an Internet Marketing Platform of Choice

While Facebook and Twitter used to be the favourite hangouts for younger demographics, Instagram continues to grow in popularity and presents a valuable internet marketing opportunity, particularly for those business owners who need to reach more people from a younger target market to succeed online.

The great thing about Instagram is, as the name implies, everything happens pretty quickly. This means that while sharing visuals with prospective customers here is an effective small business marketing tactic, it won’t take up a great deal of your time. In fact, it can be pretty fun!

There are, however, some tried and true ways to use Instagram effectively so that what you do share with the intention of popularising your brand or reaching new customers is capable of giving your business a leg-up over the competition.

Small Business Marketing via Instagram

Make note of these tips and add them to your internet marketing repertoire:

Getting Started:

  • Create your Instagram account and include a link to your business’ website as well as your company logo in the profile. You can also connect your account to your Facebook page so as to quickly and easily inform Facebook followers that they can find your business on Instagram, as well.
  • Check out the Instagram for Business blog for tips on how to best use the social media platform in your own small business marketing, as well as some real life examples of  how other businesses are successfully sharing images and marketing, simultaneously.

What to Share:

Half the battle of effectively incorporating Instagram into your small business marketing mix is knowing exactly what you should be sharing. The following will help guide your actions:

  • Like with any other social media platform, you can tick followers off pretty easily with blatant sales pitches. This being the case, mix up your sharing by including images your followers will find fun or interesting, in addition to those that somehow relate to your service offering.
  • Prospective customers want to see behind the scenes at your business or your employees at work. Share these types of images to earn their trust.
  • Don’t think that because you’re using Instagram for internet marketing that you’re restricted to sharing images of your products, services or employees. Instead, think of visuals that somehow relate to your brand or the philosophy you follow. A restaurant that uses local, organic ingredients in the meals they prepare might include images taken during trips to local farmers’ markets or crates of fresh produce and livestock at a local farm.
  • A highly effective way to use Instagram for small business marketing is to share images of your products being used in ways that might not be blatantly apparent to everyone. When people can see just how versatile a product is, or that it can be used to satisfy one of their own needs, they’ll be more likely to buy it.

Getting More Followers:

Like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, the same rules apply when it comes to getting more people to follow you in Instagram; the sole reason you’re incorporating this platform into your internet marketing strategy–to reach more people online!

  • Follow others and, most importantly, be sure to follow back those who have already found and followed you; they’ve shown an interest in your brand, now convert them into your customer!
  • Be social! ‘Like’ your followers’ images and leave your comments. The more of an active participant you are, the more beneficial Instagram will be to your internet marketing efforts.

Put your brand in the middle of all the action online by creating an Instagram account and sharing visuals. Stay tuned next week for tips on how to effectively use Hashtags, sharing video and optimising your Instagram profile.

For more on this and other social media marketing, call us on 1300 88 55 57.

Write and Publish an eBook to Boost Traffic and Brand Recognition While Earning Extra Cash

Every small business owner, no matter what industry they’re in, needs a content strategy that’s capable of driving traffic to their website and holding people’s attention long enough to convert new leads and sales. By creating and sharing content, you not only demonstrate to Google that you’re an authority in your niche, which benefits your site’s position in the search rankings, but it’s also a highly effective way to popularise your brand and pique prospective clients’ interest.

So what if your content strategy could include creating content that would not only boost the volume of traffic your site receives, but also earn your business an additional buck or two in the process? The solution is to create an eBook, either by writing it from scratch or re-purposing an article you previously wrote and shared via your blog, and to publish it through Kindle Direct Publishing in Amazon.

Amazon is one of the most frequently searched and/or visited sites on the web, today. If people world-wide are searching and browsing in Amazon, getting an eBook that contains links to your business’ site and is branded with your company logo is a pretty smart business move, don’t you think?

If this multipurpose internet advertising tactic interests you, read on.

Adding an eBook to Your Content Strategy

It’s really quite easy to publish a book with Kindle Direct Publishing. All you need is a Word doc that’s free from charts or other images that won’t display well, and to make sure the text is written in a plain font.

Of course, it won’t benefit your content strategy if you choose to publish an eBook on a bloody boring topic that nobody wants to read. Choose a topic that will be helpful and of interest to the people in your target market.

It may be worth your while to find someone who can create a cover for your book, as a professional looking cover will undoubtedly attract more attention than a listing for a book without a cover. Enlist your graphic savvy friends or find someone who can do it for you on the cheap, in a place like oDesk.

Internet Advertising, Effectively and Efficiently

The great thing about publishing an eBook is that you have the opportunity to really popularise your brand–just think about the number of people who use Amazon! To really optimise your use of this internet advertising tactic, be sure to brand out your book with your company’s logo. Then, make it a double-whammy by inserting hyperlinks to your business’ site; people who buy and read your eBook can click through to your site if they’re intrigued to learn more about the company or person behind the book.

To Charge or Not to Charge

If you’ve got a great topic and you want to make a little extra cash while using this content strategy to fulfill the much larger purpose of driving more traffic to your site and boosting your search rankings, you will want to use Kindle Direct Publishing, where the lowest price you can charge for an eBook is 99 cents. Sometimes, however, business owners decide to publish an article that they previously shared on their blog and are hoping to squeeze out a few more internet advertising kilometres, but don’t want to charge money for something that others have already seen and read for free. For this, you can first publish your eBook in Amazon and then use a site like Smashwords, which allows you to place a $0 price tag on an eBook, and then report the lower price to Amazon, who may or may not lower their selling price to match the competitor.  But, really, whether you decide to publish an eBook entirely for branding and internet advertising purposes, or you want to make a few extra dollars, charging 99 cents for something that could be of great value to a person isn’t worth worrying about.

Designing and implementing an effective content strategy takes time and skill, but doing so will prove to Google and prospective customers that you are an authority that’s worthy of their attention. So take a little time and publish an eBook that’s capable of going the distance for your business.

Call us on 1300 88 55 57 to learn more about creating a custom content strategy for your business.

Start Working Infographics Into Your Web Strategy to Capitalise on Current Trends

Last week, I talked about how it will be beneficial to incorporate visuals into your web Web Strategy Infographicsmarketing in 2014. Just consider the massive surge in the popularity of image-centred sites like Pinterest and the growing use of visuals, including photos, videos and infographics in anything and everything from blog posts to Tweets.

While it’s obvious this is a trend that’s going to be here for some time, getting on board and incorporating visuals into your web strategy is a smart move, not only because doing so will attract more attention to your content and brand, but because it will be a necessity for those who want to be major online players, going forward.

Why Your Web Marketing Needs Infographics

Regardless of whether your business sells clothing or is a head hunter for multi-national corporations, there are ways you can incorporate infographics into the web marketing you do on your company’s behalf. Overloaded by information, people are begging for simpler ways to obtain and digest the information they need to make decisions, and an infographic is a clever and highly-effective way to reach and get the attention of greater numbers of potential customers.

To put it simply, your web strategy will benefit from infographics because they appeal to those with little time and/or those who view your page from their mobile devices; the information your infographics contain is more easily digested than big bodies of text. Infographics can also be shared with little effort. Just think of it: if the infographics you use to market your goods and services or to explain a larger concept are high quality, others will want to use and share them too. This will only benefit you, as it will help build upon the web of links your site needs to become an authority in the industry.

Where to Use Them for the Biggest Digital Marketing Effect

Determining where infographics fit into your web strategy isn’t particularly difficult, as data-focused graphics can be used in just about anything and everything. While blog posts and eBooks are rather obvious places to use your infographics, there are a couple of places where using infographics can have a big effect, but that are often over-looked:

  • Press Releases: add a visual to what are more traditionally straight bodies of text and people will take notice
  • Infographic Directories: post the killer infographic you created in a directory that’s specially designed for sharing this type of content to bring more traffic (which you can track) to your site

In the same way that your website should make it as easy as possible for its visitors to contact you for more information or to purchase your goods and/or services, you need to make it easy for others to share the infographics you use–that is, if you really want to capitalise on the power of these visuals to boost your overall web marketing efforts.  So, for instance, if you’re using an infographic in a blog post to highlight or better explain a concept, give your readers the option to grab the line of code that will allow them to use and/or share it with others.

How to Create Infographics

Using infographics in your content is a great way to keep your web strategy on point with current trends. Give people the visuals they want and need by choosing to either create your own infographics or investing some amount of money to hire professionals to create them for you.

Now, the do-it-yourself route may not be for everyone, even if there are some easy-to-use online services to help you create them. It takes time and some amount of skill and creativity to create a high quality infographic. If you’re unable to create a visual that’s capable of speaking volumes to your readers, you may want to consider hiring someone to create an infographic that could become a major asset for your web strategy. A quick search in Google will yield results for sites that can be of assistance, whichever route you choose to take.

Bring your web strategy up to speed and in-line with the marketing tactics that are most relevant for web users today. Call us on 1300 88 55 57 for more information.

Say it with Pictures: Incorporate Images in All Your Social Media Web Marketing

Especially this year, it seems the saying ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ is a social media web strategysomething we should take note of, at least when it comes to planning our social media strategies. Trends in digital marketing have shown that rather than a thousand words, a picture may be worth a heck of a lot of followers or even leads when it’s shared through social media platforms. Infusing your web marketing with visuals so that the content you share in popular social media sites like Facebook and Twitter include things like infographics, pictures or videos, could be the key to small business marketing success this year.

Using Visuals is a Web Marketing Trend in Motion

While the use of visuals in digital marketing has been growing in popularity, it seems this will be the year when those who take advantage of the trend and include more pictures, video and infographics in the content they share could position themselves well for success online. Just look at the way Instagram took the social media world by storm last year; everyone, everywhere was snapping pictures and sharing them, whether for personal or web marketing purposes.

Why Images are Effective

It’s a well-known fact that people engage on a higher level with images than they do straight text. Rather than spewing loads of digits that your followers will quickly forget, or skip over all together, an infographic is the way to imprint your message in a lasting, meaningful way. Sure, few small businesses will have the time or maybe the budget to create an infographic every time they want to share content that contains statistics, but even if you reserve the use of these images for the content you feel is most interesting and relevant to your social media followers, it’ll undoubtedly give your digital marketing efforts a leg-up over the competition.

Capitalise on the Power of Images

Put images to work in your web marketing strategy to not only drive home your content’s message but to also popularise your brand. When you take lots of pictures of the products or services you sell, your employees hard at work or the happy customers you serve, sharing them with your social followers could have a powerful effect.

Imagine you share a picture of your latest product with your Facebook followers; a super slick, custom graphic messenger bag. Those who follow you may feel compelled to Tweet out the picture to all their friends and followers who they know take an interest in custom clothing and accessories, too. Before you know it, the digital marketing for your latest creation has been done for you. Now all you have to do is sit back and wait for the orders to start pouring in.

Pinterest and Instagram are Great Platforms for Small Business Marketing

If you don’t yet have accounts with Instagram or Pinterest, it’s time you set these up. Pinterest, especially, is an amazing lead-generation tool. This social image sharing site also added a highly useful analytics tool for businesses, through which business owners can track and measure the success of their pins.

No matter your business’ niche, taking photos with a smart phone is a quick and easy way to promote your brand and generate more buzz around the products and services you offer.  Not only that, but interacting with followers in social media and presenting images of the people behind your brand builds trust and are two proven ways to generate more leads and sales.

Boost the success rate of your business’ web marketing efforts this year by incorporating visuals in anything and everything you share. While videos may take a little more time and planning than snapping a couple of quick pics with a smart phone, this is also a visual with powerful digital marketing potential.

For guidance on how to take your social media marketing to the next level with visuals, call The SEO Company on 1300 88 55 57.

Internet Marketing Study Exposes How Consumers Research the Goods and Services They’re Ready to Buy Online

I think it’s safe to say that for small business owners the biggest challenge, as far as internet marketing goes, is figuring out how to get people to buy. You could have scores of people visit your site each and every day, but if they’re not the types of visitors who are ready and wanting to buy, it defeats the whole purpose of having a website, right?

For the small business owner, discovering exactly where people do their research before making a purchase can make designing a digital marketing strategy that works more of a science and less of a shot in the dark.

A recent study performed by retail engagement company, Parago, looked at the ways people use the internet to learn more about products and services. In my opinion, there’s a lot of value here for the small business owner, as internet marketing strategies that take these findings into account will have a greater chance of being effective, bringing their creators more leads and sales via their websites.

While there is much a business owner can take from this study and apply to the online marketing they do, there are two key findings that I’d like to share with you here, as I think they’re particularly relevant for the small business owner; the ways consumers do, or rather do not, use social media to research for the goods and services they wish to buy, and the fact that Google is still the source consumers turn to most when looking for more information on or to buy a product or service.

Social Media’s Place in Online Marketing, According to Consumer Behaviour

Now before you think you’ll never have to send out another Tweet or make another post in Facebook, don’t get carried away. Social media is still important and a completely necessary component of any internet marketing you do for your business. The important thing to take from Parago’s findings, which put Social Media as the source consumers turn to the least when searching for more information on a product or service, is that fine-tuning your social media interactions so that they focus more on content sharing, building your brand and mingling with current and potential customers, it isn’t the place for serious product or service marketing.

Sure, share your organisation’s news with your social media followers, including details on new products, services or promotions, but don’t expect people who are ready to buy to use Facebook to check out the specs on or pricing for a product you carry.

Pleasing Google is Still What Counts

For anyone who was starting to think that a mix of internet marketing and SEO wasn’t as necessary as it once was, Parago’s research confirms that Google is still the resource people use most often, when searching for information on the purchases they intend to make. For the small business owner, this means getting your business’ website up to speed and in line with the top competitors in a market is how you’re going to A) rank well in Google, and B) receive more of the ready-to-buy visitors you need to succeed. Of course, once you attract the attention of searchers in Google, it’s up to the design of and content on your site to convince visitors to take action and contact you for more details or buy your products or services.

Staying up to speed with trends in consumer behaviour can and will provide valuable insight for those looking to generate more leads and sales online.

For more information on internet marketing and SEO, call us on 1300 88 55 57.