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Smart Websites

The age of digital media is stronger today than it was just two years ago, actually stronger than it was just 10 months ago. You need to understand how to be an effective marketer to promote your website.

It isn’t a secret that the search engines (Google, Yahoo, etc.) continually modify their algorithms so that we as developers, designers, and marketers are constantly seeking better methods to attract customers.

Branding has and will remain a constant. In order to be an effective brand it is required to understand how the current process works to make sure your website is built smart.

Some of the things to be concerned about for 2012 are the following:

• Build brand links rather than anchor texts. This includes posts, articles and whitepapers that are relevant.

• Subdomains had become a no-no for the last few months with SEO’s. Now things are changing again. For example, Google is treating subdomains as internal links rather than independent URL’s. That means as you build subdomains, be sure to target your keywords while naming them. This will improve your rankings.

• Content is still king. Knowing this, you should choose wisely the links to your site. Be sure these are solid sites with good content.

• Contextual links are still very powerful. Base these on the following:

–  Appropriate anchor text

–  Content quality and relevancy

–  Place these links within the content and surround them by the content in the site

–  Contextual links drive more visitors to your website

• Backlinks are good when done correctly. You can build backlinks through blogging, forum participation and press releases.

In addition, you need to make sure that your website is easy to navigate, has no broken links, and has a site map. It should go without saying that the site should to be clean in design and not look too colorful like a circus. As much as this may seem obvious, just do some web surfing and see how many websites violate this rule. Maybe that’s why they are not well visited or ranked very high.

And keeping with the digital age, make sure your website is devise friendly. Meaning it will operate on all forms of handheld devices (smart phones, tablets, etc.) as well as different browsers. It also helps to stay in touch with new and current trends such as qr codes. Although this could be overused, it is good to know that qr codes can be text messages as well as links to your website. Use them as often as needed to keep active customers in touch with your company.

And finally, once you build that smart site, don’t let it sit for several months without updating or modifying the content. It is very important to have an active site. If not, then the SEO’s  will quickly decrease your rankings, and t will be difficult to regain the position you once held.

If you need help to promote your site, or want to get higher rankings, give George Carson a call at 949-477-9400

In this tough economy it is necessary to keep your potential customers at your site and convert them to buyers. This pr marketing strategy is a must for you to have a successful eCommerce web site. So how do you do this? It all begins with Optimization. Yes, that word keeps popping up, but this time, I will provide you some pr marketing strategy tips to spot if your site is well optimized or if it is time to re-design the site and optimize it.web optimization and ranking

To understand the right way, you need to know the “failure” signs of a poor web site. For example here is a short list of what a poor failing web site contains:

1- Poor Copy. Too often the copy talks about too many things, and is not focused on how your site, or the products will benefit your customers.

2- Difficult to navigate. If you have visited a site and thought how poorly it was to find things, or navigate, then use this to really see if your site falls in this category.

3- Difficult to find items. Many web sites try to pack as much products into their site, only to get the visitor lost and confused as what to buy. Keep your products limited to a few, or to a specific category.

4- Broken links to web pages. This happens too often. It will also cause you to get poor ranking on the search engines. Check all your links, make sure they work, and if you have links to other sites, make sure they work as well.

5- Poor design. This should be at the top. If your site is too busy, or lacks interest, then you need to re-design the site to be more pleasing for visitors.

6- Contact Information. Again, this important area is one of the main causes of people moving on from your site. If visitors have questions, or want to contact you, give them an easy email, phone number, or form for them to get in touch. People want to know you are real, so don’t provide a “yahoo” email account, or a PO Box for an address.

These are just a few of the pr marketing strategies that you can do to improve the conversion rate of visitors to your web site. If you want a FREE analysis of your web site, give Carson Marketing a call. We will give you FREE tips on how to improve your site. Or you can keep going on as usual and watch your competitors take all the business from you.

Some say yes, while those not sure sit and wait to see what happens over the next couple of years. If your pr marketing strategies are not current to include this trend then you might just be that pr client who fades into the darkness of cyberspace.

It’s amazing how the advertising industry is running scared about social media taking away their market share. social media networkingMaybe because they are the last to recognize or admit social media was not a fad but a new way of communicating. For over a year, I discussed this at length. I mentioned how social media needs to be part of any pr clients marketing strategy, or media plan. But then again, I am one of the few in this marketing and publicity industry that embraces new technology and uses it to my pr client’s advantage. Why do ad agencies, even pr firms keep ignoring opportunities like social media, social networks? Because they do not understand it! And most importantly, cannot figure out how to make money off this technology, because they were too comfortable doing the same old stuff for over 40 years!

What got me on this topic was an article I read today in FT.com (Financial Times) by Tim Bradshaw. It is titled “Social networks threaten advertising growth“. Powerful heading, and even more eye-opening as how fearful this industry is about technology. Yet, our industry communicates to consumers about new products, services and why you need them. But these same people who profess its greatness, fear it.

I have learned to adapt to new technologies and make it beneficial for my pr clients. For example, web marketing has been part of our company for over 6 years. That puts us light years ahead of many others in my industry. We continue to learn about how to improve client’s visibility, increase sales all through web marketing. Yes, we do mix traditional marketing techniques when needed to further a clients publicity campaign or awareness program.

To wrap this up, we are not fearful of technology such as social media; as a matter of fact we are looking for the next revolution and are ready to use it to our clients advantage! If you want your publicity or marketing to move forward fast, then give George Carson a call at 949-477-9400. It could be the best call you make to put you ahead of your competition.

Before submitting your local or national web site to the search engines, make sure it is properly optimized, has all the meta tag keywords, and titles. The second important part, make sure the site is graphically appealing, not cluttered, or the SEO’s will just pass you by. The last thing, is the site map. Your web site should have a site map, it is how the SEO’s crawl sites. It’s all about knowing how to use web marketing.

Just like a well planned publicity campaign, your well-designed web site needs to be submitted to get the site ranked by the SEO’s, such as Google, Yahoo, and MSN. Whether you are a local Orange County web marketing strategycompany, or a national company, the submission process is basically the same. Here are a few tips to consider:

1- Submit your site after it is complete. Too many times a pr client, or web designers want to submit the site even if you have a couple of pages that are still in construction, or are not completed. This will hurt your rankings.

2- Hand Submission is best. If you hire a local web marketing company or have your  local publicity agency do the submission, make sure it is not done with software.

3- Beware of promises by web companies. If someone promises you top rankings…buyer beware. Check them out, make sure the company can produce what they claim.

4- Use keywords, phrases that relate to your location. It is good practice to include in tyour title page, or in the body text that tells where your company rsided. Although your company may do business nationally, local web marketing will further the exposure and your chances of being ranked higher with the SEO’s.

Doing the submission to all the search engines and directories is a long process. And you should only submit to about 5 SEO’s per week. Doing a blast will trigger red flags to the “bots” and cause your site to be overlooked. In the long run, using a professional web marketing company will assure your site is properly submitted, and optimized.

I guess I’m on a web marketing kick. My last blog told you about web marketing and how to optimize a pr clients site for Google. Well, I want to now tell you how publicity can be part of your web marketing campaign.

First you need to realize that web marketing is not a once-in-a-while job. It requires an web marketing strategyon-going effort with savvy web people to make it all work properly. If you have a PR Client that is asking to get their web site ranked higher, such as on page one of Google, you better make sure you fully understand web marketing. Look at the definition of web marketing in wikipedia.

Web marketing has become a major career that an association, webmarketing association, was formed in 1997. Visit the site, it has some good information.

A Web Marketing campaign can consist of:  SEO (Search Engine Optimization), SEM (Search Engine Marketing), banner ads, email marketing, among a lot of other elements. That brings me to publicity. Finally got there! Press Releases written properly can help a pr clients web site gain higher page ranking. But it is how the press release is written and optimized. Yes, even a press release needs to be optimized. Then the distribution channels you use are also critical. Just sending it to a free distribution service may not get you full exposure on Google Alert or Yahoo News. Even local pr clients who want local publicity, this can be an excellent marketing tool.

Another publicity effort should be social networks. Using sites like Facebook, or MySpace is good, but you need to make sure the podcast, or video has something solid to tell. It cannot just be an ad campaign. Places to test market would be on YouTube. Writing articles for Internet distribution is another great way to incorporate publicity into web marketing. There are many other ways to make a publicity campaign more effective when you use the power of web marketing. Need help? Call George Carson for a free one hour consultation. He can be reached at: 949-477-9400.

Web Marketing may not be new to pr marketing people, or web developers, but pr clients do not truly understand the power it has. For example, it takes weeks sometimes months to get a press release published, or even an article in a trade or consumer magazine. When you use web marketing correctly, your publicity efforts can happen within days, sometimes hours!

It is important if you are a pr client to not forge ahead and start calling your publicity agency to do web marketing. That’s not their strength. What you need to do is have your pr marketing strategy team web marketingdevelop a solid web marketing campaign that targets your specific audience. If you do not know how to implement a web marketing campaign, who do you call? Web designers are not likely to know or want to do this. Your publicity agency isn’t prepared to create online campaigns; they are best at submitting traditional media. It is best to contact a company that knows what and how to get your company noticed.

Web Marketing is more than sending out press releases to online newswire services. It is a complete program that analyzes your web site and does more than optimize it. Knowing the language on each page that has links to those sites and pages within your site is critical in optimizing a site. Keywords are not the big thing anymore. You can include them, but keywords or key phrases alone will not get you noticed. What about buying adwords? I prefer to not do this. Yes, we would consider buying some adwords for clients that really can afford it, we prefer to use specially designed programs at Carson Marketing, Inc. to include a vast array of elements. These may include the optimizing I just mentioned, marketing to social networks, writing blogs, to publicity releases, links with credible sites that are ranked high, to an on-going publicity program for online media. These are just a few examples to let you know that web marketing isn’t the simple task of sending a bunch of press releases to the online media. It’s time to get noticed so that you survive this slow time in order to be on top of the competition. Let us show you how without burning a whole in your wallet. Call us at 949-477-9400.

If you haven’t already heard, there is another new search engine, called “Cuil“. It is an Irish word meaning, Knowledge. PR Clients, as well as all publicity professionals, public relations agencies, even local orange county publicity professionals should keep an eye on this new SEO. Why? Because this could be a publicity opportunity for pr clients to gain recognition as this new SEO gets more attention.

Ok, let’s look at this new search engine to get a better understanding. The company was started by former Google engineers. Top notch people, not the sub-level engineers. eWeek article tells more about this.search engine marketing

Cuil feels they have listened to the users of search and decided to provide a better indexing of pages. Here is the catch. There are over 120 billion web pages. That’s a lot of pages to try and create a better search platform. Anyway, these engineers have the support of investors who poured over $33 million into the development. Already, since launch day on July 28, the site has had unexpected traffic causing it to lock up for a time.

What makes this search engine different…Cuil provides tabs to better clarify subjects, they organize the features better so that images are identified by topics with a search refining suggestion area. Is this a better mouse trap? Possibly, but it takes some time learning how to get the most use of this new search. TechCrunch states it is an overrated site and may not live up to what the former Google staffers think it really is.

In any case, publicity professionals should include this search engine as part of their pr clients marketing and publicity program. If you are unable to keep up with all the new search engine changes and need to get noticed, or ranked in the top, then give George Carson a call at 949-477-9400. Carson Marketing, Inc is a solid web marketing company that knows how to get your company noticed. Call today for a free consultation, and just maybe you will learn the secrets to being a top ranked web site.

Publicity is Everywhere series

As we enter the end of this year, I want to make sure that many of you are taking advantage of the web site your company, or pr client has. If you haven’t checked your site lately, within the past 6 weeks, then it’s time to take another look.Web Marketing and page ranking

This time you need to look at where your site is ranked. How is it positioned with the search engines? Does the site appear when you type the different keywords…near the top, or way down past the 100 other companies listed? Do you even show up? How many layers of keywords do you need to type before your company appears?

If your site is not getting high rankings, don’t call your pr agency, or the IT department, or the web designer. The search engines are again re-structuring how they rank and search a site. It’s time to get smarter on how you market your pr client’s web site.

That is why I continually recommend pr clients and web-marketing companies to re-visit their web sites at least every 6 to 8 weeks and do updates to re-fresh the site. Many times this re-fresh will require some additional optimizing to meet the new demands set upon sites by the SEO’s. It is a good idea to take advantage of checking your pressroom, contact info and make sure your products and services are current.

If you want us to check how valid your links are, how valid your site is with the search engines, just give us a call. The service is FREE! Yes, free. No strings attached. It is our holiday gift to you.

See Also

These two can be powerful when used properly

web site marketing and publicityIf you are a pr client, or a publicity agency, you know the power of pr. But have you combined any of that power with your web site? Probably not. Beacuse most publicity experts and pr clients think these two should stay separate in different departments. If that is your thinking then you are not providing your company, or pr client the full experience they can have when you use these tools properly.

Let’s accept the fact that you are a savvy publicity person. And that you have media contacts, a good copywriter to do press releases and articles for the company. Now what about the web site.

I have spoken about organic search engine listings before, and this part of the "SEO TIPS" is based on getting organic listings. In case you do not understand what Organic listings are, let me give you a very brief explanation. Keywords are either purchased and/or placed into your web site so that people can find your site. Organic listings are thosse that are not "paid" listings. The paid listings, you have seen them before. It is where Google, and Yahoo have web sites listed on the right side, or at the very top. Notice above those lists the words "sponsored links". That means these are paid positions. The other sites listed are non-paid, also called Organic Listings.

Here are some tips about SEO basics. I use these and found other professional SEO’s use them as well. You can more of these at the Target Marketing web article.

  • Look for synonyms when doing keyword searches
  • Get links to your site, make sure these are quality links
  • Have a site map
  • Create a press room
  • Keep the site fresh, modify pages every 10 to 12 weeks

These are basic, but important. If you want to get into the heart of using marketing with publicity give us a call. We’ll make sure you are getting noticed!

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Supplemental Results, are they good or bad?

Google and supplemental resultsThe battle continues at the big Search Engine Wars to see who is the biggest and strongest. In this battle it always seems that the loosers are the webmasters and ultimately the pr clients, manufacturing clients, and any company that has a web site.

The term: Supplemental Results, is something that Google has created less than a year ago. They, Google, claims it is a good thing, but is it really? From all the stories and blogs and webmasters that are writing about this, it seems to be not very good.

Let me explain. While AllTheWeb tries to claim they are the biggest in indexing sites with about 3.2 billion pages, Google at the time of this announcement had only 3.1 billion pages indexed. Then Google decided to list those pages that have not been crawled get into this pile. That way Google was able to announce it has 3.3 billion pages indexed. It is all publicity at the worst. Why? Because while these SEO’s fight to get attention in the media, we, that’s you and I, suffer.

This is how Google explains this black hole listing:

"Supplemental sites are part of Google’s auxiliary index. We’re able to place fewer restraints on sites that we crawl for this supplemental index than we do on sites that are crawled for our main index. For example, the number of parameters in a URL might exclude a site from being crawled for inclusion in our main index; however, it could still be crawled and added to our supplemental index. The index in which a site is included is completely automated; there’s no way for you to select or change the index in which your site appears. Please be assured that the index in which a site is included does not affect its PageRank."

Confused? Yes, we all are. Now you can see why web marketing is a full time position. It’s like a battle field. The big SEO’s are fighting while developers, pr agencies, web masters and web marketing experts need to dodge their bullets in order to get sites listed correctly. You don’t want to get in this "supplemental results list". Webmasters, designers and web marketing experts are learning how to avoid this from happening. Make sure your pr agency, or web marketing company knows about this or your site might just be next.

See Also