Do you really need SEO?

wbc_seobasicsThere’s a lot of hype about the ability of SEO (search engine optimization) to drive gobs of traffic to your site. But is that really what you need?

The ultimate goal of SEO is to show up at the top of a Google search when a user types the phrase or keywords most important to your business, such as “Portland plumber,” “discount software” or “local wineries.”

Play your cards right and that could happen — at least in theory — but competition is making that increasingly difficult. In short, the game of SEO is different than it was even just a few years ago, so it’s important to have reasonable expectations. Continue reading

Take control of online video

Much of the excitement at the Content Marketing World conference last month was about the growth of online video. Here’s just a few of the statistics attendees were buzzing about:

  • According to presenter Lee Oddenconsumers are 85% more likely to buy after they’ve watched a video.
  • Video has been identified as a significant driver of search engine traffic, making it one of the new darlings of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) gurus.
  • YouTube is now the second-largest search engine after Google.

With numbers like these, it’s no wonder that video is increasingly becoming a more common ingredient in many content marketing plans. Getting started presents a few hurdles for the uninitiated, but luckily the same tools that make online video attractive to consumers are also making it easier for you to reach—and convert—your audience. Continue reading

The care and feeding of a conversion-focused website

In the last two issues I’ve covered strategies for attracting new business with content marketing and getting the process rolling by creating or upgrading to a conversion-focused website. Today I’ll talk about the ongoing maintenance that transforms a website from a digital brochure into a business-generating tool that works around the clock. Continue reading

SEO demystified

ever been approached by a company promising top search engine results for your website? before you buy, read on.

Content drives Google search results, and in the words of web expert Mark O’Brien of Newfangled, “If you’re good to Google, Google will be good to you.” It was the very day I heard Mark speak at the Creative Freelancer Conference in Boston that I was on the phone with a client during a break. The client was hiring me for a website redesign, but was looking at other companies to provide search engine optimization (SEO) for the site…at a rate of $3,000 to $5,000 per month.

“Wait a minute!” I said.

I went on to explain what I’d learned from Mark’s presentation…about not stuffing your site’s pages with keywords, or playing any of the other SEO games that might land you on top temporarily, only to constantly require new tricks in order to stay there.

“Tell me more,” the client said. Continue reading