6 Tips to Start a Successful Blog

It’s becoming more and more apparent to me that you must learn how to blog to stay ahead in search marketing. Search engines love fresh content and blogs allow you to easily add fresh content. In the last 2 years I’ve noticed entire sites in our industry turn their entire site into a blog. The blog platforms out there are very robust and offer you many benefits.

Here are 6 tips to create a successful blog:

1. Get a unique domain name. If you sign-up for a blogger account or a wordpress account you’ll get a sub domain and it will be tougher for search engines to find your content. Domains are going for as little as $7 a year now so make the plunge and buy your own domain name. Go to mydomain.com if you’d like to register a domain today.

2. Setup hosting. Hosting is also very cheap these days. You can spend as little as $5 per month to host your blog. This along with the domain name adds up to $67 for the entire year. Make sure and pick a hosting company that has 24/7 support and that has been around for some time. There are many hosting companies out there and some will not be around for the long haul. A few of my favorites are Dream Host and Media Temple.

3. Create an outline ahead of time so you have some topics to talk about. Make sure it is relevant to your businesses. If you sell books online than you could do book reviews and link directly to the books on your site.

4. Promote your blog. There are blog directories out there where you can submit your blog so you’ll start to get some readers. Also promote your blog on your main site. We (emarketed) have a banner on every page of our site pointing people to our blog. Also include a link in your email signature to direct people to your blog.

5. Get involved with other blogs. Comment on other peoples blogs and include a link back to your blog. This falls in line with promotion as well but helps you with getting in to the habit of reading others blogs which helps you get familiar with blogging. You’ll start to notice how blogs are written, how people interact with blogs, and hopefully gain some readers for your blogs.

6. Setup Google Analytics to track your blog traffic. Google Analytics is an amazing free program that can be installed on your blog in a few minutes. WordPress has a plugin where you install and just input your Google ID number for Google Analytics. You can see what site someone found you on, how long they stay on your blog, what size monitor they are viewing your blog on and so much more.

Hope this helps. Feel free to leave a comment if you think of some others that I missed. I know there are many but this will get you off to a good start.

Google AdWords Editor

I’d recommend using Google AdWords Editor if you manage over 100 words for your pay per click campaigns. Google is at it again with a new version just released. You can download AdWords Editor 6.5 and load your user ID and password in and be managing your account within minutes, We’ve been using the editor for a few years now and it saves us hours of frustration, tears, and sweat on a weekly basis.

A few of the new features from the latest update:

  • Horizontal scrolling when viewing data
  • Updated calendar so you can view statistics
  • New keyword opportunities tool (my favorite!)

A few of the existing features that have saved us hours of work:

  • Bulk changes/uploads
  • Easily copy or move keywords or ads between ad groups and campaigns
  • Quick navigation
  • It’s Free!

It’s baffeling to me sometimes to think of all the different departments at Google that are just working on one aspect of the great company that provides so much more than just search.

Article Optimization

The below image explains where you can insert your keywords and how you can use content for article optimization that is posted to your site on other article sites. It is important to wait until Google is picking up your article first though before submitting. Some might think this would be getting into duplicate content areas but you’ll just need to make sure that the article you submit is in fact your content and also make sure to read the guidelines of the site where you submit your article. Ezine articles is one site that we’ve used in the past.

article optimization

Search Engine Land posted this image today. Make sure and also go to the main section of this blog category and view all the images that explain many facets of search marketing. You can also click here to see the company that did these graphics and view the entire archive. Definitely a fun and interesting way to learn search marketing.

article optimization

Free Local Search Marketing Workshop

We will be offering a free search marketing workshop on November 12th for business owners in the Los Angeles area. We will be covering the following topics: blogging, local search engines, social bookmarking, and ways to monitor your business on the Internet

Lunch will be provided along with FREE blog hosting and setup for all attendees.
Please click here to RSVP and find out all the details. We look forward to seeing you!

Search Engine Friendly Web Design Tips

We tend to get asked this question many times throughout the week:  What is search engine friendly web design? I’d like to clarify this for our readers.

So here’s a quick list of things you should be considering when creating search engine friendly web design:

1.) Loads quickly (no heavy flash loading files or quick time movies)

2.) Have clean code (programming on the back end – click view source in your browser to view the programming of a web page – some programs throw in a lot of code that slows your page down)

3.) Have a site map (at the bottom of every page should be a link to your site map that has all the pages of your site listed)

4.) Have proper headings (clearly name your pages and use sub headings as well to break up your content)

5.) Have good content that talks about your services and/or products (search engines love content – give the search engines relevant content)

6.) Make sure to name your images with the ALT tag (this is how you’ll label your images in the html – you can do this with text editors or with programs such as dreamweaver or frontpage)

7.) Make sure you have different title tags for each page on your site (the title tag in the html looks like this:
<title>Page Name Here</title>

8.) Lastly I’d spend some time going through the Google Webmaster Guidelines to get familiar with how the largest search engine out there wants to see your site.

Good luck!

Paid Directory Submission for SEO

Just thought we’d post some sites we recommend to our clients for paid directory submissions. We’ve found that these sites are worth the initial investment. Please let us know if you have any recommendations or had any bad experiences with any of these paid directories. When we perform setup on sites for SEO we submit to these paid directories to help improve the Google PR (page rank) and also to drive traffic from these sites.

We’ve also provided the link above directly to the submission page. Sometimes it’s tough to find where you’re suppose to submit your site. Good luck submitting your site! Make sure and find a relevant category for your site within those directories.

Matt Cutts SEO Tips On Blogging

Well if you’re reading this chances are you’ve heard of Matt Cutts but if you haven’t, he’s a rockstar in the search marketing space. He’s also know as the spam czar at Google. He heads the spam team at Google and speaks often about SEO and “whitehat” techniques. Whitehat is a term in the search marketing space that refers to tactics that are permitted by the search engines and blackhat refers to ways people try and trick the search engines. This video goes into ways you can do SEO through your blog with whitehat techniques. I’d recommend staying on top of Matt Cutts blog.

I’d love to hear some feedback on this video. Please feel free to comment.

Early Google Days

Just read this interview with Larry and Sergey, the founders of Google, and was inspired to post a link here. This interview was done when Google had 6 employees! Larry and Sergey both saw Google as being a leader in the search space back in a time when the dot-coms were ramping up to hit the ceiling in the dot-com bubble explosion in March 2000. They continue to drive inovation and are continusioly coming out with new products and improving on their current products. emarketed strives to learn from Lary and Sergey and hope to one day bring emarketed to the eyes of the public as one of the worlds premeir web marketing design firms.

Dealing with Google

I’m going to be frank with my opinion here. Just because Google is an innovative, booming company, one which will change—and probably already has changed—the way our world accesses and manages information, that doesn’t mean by any stretch of the imagination that Google should be treated with some sort of ivory-tower, holier-than-thou deference.

Believe me when I say, Google is as successful as it is specifically because they have done so much to shed the image of traditional mega-corporations. If you tried to call up your brokerage firm for some support and advice, you might get it, eventually. If, however, you are running a Google Adwords or Adsense campaign and you find yourself needing some questions answered, Mr. Google is more than happy to put down his trillions and his yacht and answer your phone call.

This sounds funny, but I mean it. Google has revamped the image of the consumer-conscious company. Their customer support professionals managing the Adwords and Adsense departments are nothing short of spectacular when it comes to helping you iron out your difficulties. But even though I’ve seen this in my own business and with dozens of eMarketed’s clients, some members of our industry fail to realize the significance of Google’s strong commitment to customer service.

In short, if your online venture should take you past the gates of Google, don’t be afraid to knock. They are not your average company. They do not want to be your average company. They want to be bothered, constantly. Their young employees play video games at work and eat gourmet meals three times a day. However, as a testament to their hiring process, Google is staffed entirely with young upstarts who will drop their unicycles and forks at a moment’s notice to answer a client’s call or email. These kids are dedicated to their job, period.

Google’s goal with creating Adwords and Adsense was to level the playing field between the small business and the mega-corp. As a result, small businesses have a leg up because they’re used to handling issues with suppliers and other businesses face-to-face or over the phone. Larger and more traditional businesses will have to adapt their thinking or be left in the dust when it comes to customer service and business solutions in the post-Google Age.

Free Live Search Business Listings

Just came across this today and added emarketed to the Local Listings section of Live Search. Live Search is MSN’s new search engine. It took about 15 minutes to add and is similar to the Google Local listing. At the end you are notified that you will be sent a letter via snail mail to your business address to complete the process.

You have the ability to add additional website links, pictures (up to 10), list of services, hours of operation, additional phone numbers, and of course your address!

Click here to submit your business to Live Search Local Listing Center today.