4 SEO tricks you need to know for your business

Having a good search engine optimization plan is an important aspect of any online business marketing strategy. As a business owner, it is important that you make your website visible enoughfor search engines like Google, Yahoo, andBing. These search engines have billions of daily visits. Having a good SEO will ensure that you easily attract and retain visitors. 

 Google is the go-to search engine for people around the world.

Google is the go-to search engine for people around the world.

However, these search engines are constantly updating their algorithms. This makes it difficult for businesses without a strong SEO strategy to retain the top position on Google and other search engines. This article is written to show you 4 SEO tricks that you can apply right now.

1. Make your website faster: According to Neil Patel, four out of every ten visitors will leave your website if it loads more than 4 seconds; and, 80 percent will not return. The whole point of doing your site SEO is to attract and retain clients. If you are sending them away even before they check your content, you are not doing your business much good. To further impress the importance of site speed, Google included site speed as one of the most important siteranking criteria

  1. This shows that if your site loads for more than 4 seconds, you have lost the possibility of having a first-page ranking status. There are a few factors that contribute to site speed.  One of the biggest factors is the size of your images. If your images are well compressed, they can reduce your site’s pages by up to 40%. As a result, your website will load faster. Apart from optimizing your images, here are a few other things to consider:

    a.    Reduce plugins.Identify plugins that are not really useful for your website and deactivate them. The beauty of running your website on WordPress is that you can install several plugins. However, too many plugins may slow down your website. If you are not running an e-commercestore, you do not need a timer or any of the other urgency plugins. 

    b.     Review page elements. Review all the elements on all your site pages to ensure that only the necessary elements are on each site page. Trip your website pages to the essentials widgets by decluttering your sidebar. When it comes to site speed, minimalism is the way to go.

    c.     Enable browsing cache. Browsing cache stores data in a temporary storage.This helps returningvisitors to be able to access site pages that they have visited before faster. 

 What are you doing to increase the speed of your website?

What are you doing to increase the speed of your website?

2. Link to relevant websites: The future is shared. If you want to boost your sites SEO, you have to be able to link your content to relevant content on authority websites. The normal reasoning is that linking to outside content will take people off our website. However according to top SEO expert, Rand Fishkin, founder of Moz, when you link to other websites, especially authority websites, it makes your website more valuable and trustworthy. Trust is critical to your website growth. 

3.    Improve traffic and engagement metrics.

When it comes to SEO, engagement is measured by the amount of time that visitors spend on your website. It is one of the strongest metrics that Google used in ranking a website. It goes without a rule that the more visitors spend time on your website, the more they will enjoy and engage with the content on the website. Typically, the amount of time spent by visitors on your website will determine your organic ranking placement. When the time that visitors spend on your website is long, and there is a lowbounce rate, it suggests to Googlethat people are enjoying your content. And since Google wants to supply users with valuable content, they are more likely to rank your website higher. To improve your site traffic and engagement metrics, here are a few things to bear in mind:

 Always track metrics to know what’s working and what isn’t.

Always track metrics to know what’s working and what isn’t.

a.    Use relevant images.

When you use relevant, compelling and quality images in-between your blog posts and on your website, you keep the audience engaged. This cliché, “a picture is worth a thousand words,” actually means a good and relevant picture is worth a thousand dollars SEO. 

b.     Create easy to read content.

Your content does not have to be informative alone, it has to be entertaining. It does not mean you have to crack jokes or use pictures of Seinfeld in your posts. You have to create content that is easy to read. Mix short sentences with long sentences. You should break your content into paragraphs—many paragraphs; and, do not forget to use a lot of white spaces in-between your posts. Make your content easy to scan. 

c.      Provide value in your content

A good SEO strategy is to provide value throughout your content. Most importantly, it is important for user engagement that you provide value at the beginning of your content. This will keep them glued to the blog. You can create value by creating content that answers the questions of your followers.

4. Focus on user experience

Write for humans, not Google or even Bing. This is called SEO copywriting. Instead of stuffing your content with keywords, you should focus on providing useful and engaging content. When you focus more on how you can help people engage with your brand and services, you will be automating your SEO. The goal of SEO is to reach more people who have wallets and are interested in the solutions you are offering. Instead of writing short tail keywords for search engines, write long-tail keywords for humans. 

 Always write for humans. Not for Google or Bing.

Always write for humans. Not for Google or Bing.

Real-life examples of companies applying SEO in their marketing

i.               If you search for the keyword, “fitness company,” the first website on the Google search results belong to Fitco. Fitco integrates the keyword, “fitness company” in its website description. Fitco is actually an abbreviation of a “fitnesscompany.” What really sets Fitco apart is the site speed which is less than 4 seconds. With a blog that actively focuses on providing comprehensive content and compelling images on fitness, Fitco rises to the top of Google ranking for “fitness company.”

ii.             Famous footweardoes a great job including keywords for their industry. As an e-commerce store for footwears, Famous footwear consistently useshigh quality and highly compelling images of Nike, Addidas, Roxy andConverse footwear. The website is designed to ease the user’snavigation. 

iii.            Time Doctordoes a great job including quality backlinks to other authority websites. As a top website in time management, Time Doctor consistently publishes tips on productivity, outsourcing, andother articles that include long-tail keywords.

iv.            Nonstop Signs & Printingfocuses on using long-tail keywords on their popular pages. By proving content that offersvalue to the users, they are able to improve their search engine ranking. In addition to using long-tail keywords, the site is fast and visually appealing. 

Utilizing SEO in your online business marketing strategy does not have to be frustrating. If you begin to apply these SEO strategies, you will begin to experience a massive growth in your site engagement traffic, search engine ranking, and ultimately, a bigger email list. 

8 Facebook marketing tips to drive traffic to your brick-and-mortar store

A staggering 52 percent of all small to medium-sized business post on social media every day in order to boost in-store sales. However, for some of these businesses, having an online store is not an option. In today’s world where online sales are increasing at a lighting-speed rate, location-based stores need to step up their game to still be called the top of the crop. 

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Although this may seem like something nearly impossible to achieve, with the help of social media; and Facebook, in particular, more feet will find your store! With that said, let’s look at some of the most important and immediately actionable marketing tips you can make use of to drive foot traffic to your store.

Facebook adverts

Many small business owners feel that advertising their store and its contents cost too much, especially when it comes to Facebook advertising. But what they don’t realise is the fact that they can tap into a very specific market – one that needs and is currently looking for the services offered by the business. By setting a spending limit to you your Facebook advert, selecting a specific target market and location (since you have a location-based store) will help you reach the maximum amount of potential customers. 

Creating a visual of your shop front on your business Facebook page

Since customers will be searching for your store at a certain location, you need to be able to provide them with a visual of your store. Remember, images form a huge part of what people like or dislike in today’s world; so the more appealing your storefront is, the more likely customers will shop there. Apart from adding your store address to your business Facebook page, add an image (cover image) to your page so potential customers can know what to look for.

Making use of location-based apps

One of the most looked-over aspects of Facebook tools is that of the “checking in” option. When someone checks in at a certain location or store, it reflects on that business Facebook page. By making use of location-based apps while linking it to your Facebook page, you can successfully drive more feet to your store and gain more exposure over social media. More exposure leads to more interest in what you have to offer. The more interest you get, the more feet walk through your doors!

Offer one-of-a-kind discounts

With any business, you need to always be a step or two ahead of your competition. If you look at what your competition is doing and copy their advances to get more customers, you don’t do your business any justice. You need to think out of the box and offer something customers won’t easily find anywhere else. Yes, that’s easier said than done. But in order to do it right, you need to put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Ask yourself these questions: What do I want from this particular store? What will make me come back next time to purchase more products instead of going elsewhere? One way to answer these questions is by offering one-of-a-kind discounts! With the global economy being in the state it is now, everybody jumps at seeing a big “On Sale” banner when clicking on your Facebook page. Remember, though, that you need to offer discounts on products or services in your store that customers will actually want to purchase.

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Events for the community

It’s a proven fact that store owners and managers that reach out to the community get a lot of respect from customers. This leads to loyalty and a sure-fire way of securing customers in the future. By reaching out to the community, you don’t have to sponsor huge amounts of money to special causes or have market days in your area. Through Facebook, you can create a whole new advance to reaching out to the community. A great way of doing this would be to advertise a competition on social media. However, do it with a twist. Instead of any ordinary competition where a person answers a question and receives a prize, make it a community effort! Ask households in your area to form a group, put together a basket of treats and offload it at the store. These baskets can then be delivered to those in need; thus giving a helping hand to those who need it most. The group with the most baskets can be acknowledged on the business Facebook page as well as be rewarded. This creates unity in your area and gives your business great authority as truly bringing a new light to community outreach

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Giveaways or Freebies

When does one ever get something for free? Customers truly appreciate being offered giveaways or Freebies when entering your store! By advertising on Facebook, adding a post on your profile and giving customers something to brighten up their day will ensure more feet entering your shop within a short period of time.

Adding value to what your customers want

Value is what many shop owners misinterpret when looking at their business. Adding value to a product or service does not mean the product needs to keep the customer occupied for a long period of time. Value is giving your customers something that makes their life easier; in essence, something they won’t be able to live without after they have purchased your product or service. Once again, you need to think out of the box. Simply doing what your competition is doing just won’t cut it. You need to ensure your store and your Facebook page reflects what you as a business owner believes in. That, and only that, adds value to your customer needs. With you being an approachable person, customers will feel comfortable talking to you and telling you what their want and needs are. With that information at hand, you have a huge advantage as you now have untapped knowledge about what is going to add value to your business!

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Videos, images and polls

Don’t think Facebook is simply there to share your products and build an audience. You can add videos about aspects of the business that will peak potential customer’s interest, you can add images of daily operations, you can create polls to interact with customers and you can even ask clients to share their shopping experience on your Facebook page. 

 

With so many different tools offered by social media platforms such as Facebook, even a location-based store can greatly benefit from marketing; thus putting traffic driving in a whole new, and positive light!

Four Ways to Make Your Instagram Stories Drive Sales

The Instagram Stories tool launched in 2016 and allows users to post ephemeral slideshows and videos that last only 24 hours before they disappear. Sound familiar? Some people have accused Instagram of stealing the Snap Chat marketing technique, however, even though the idea is similar, Instagram improved upon this idea and created something even more powerful for marketers to use. Stories is a place where brands can give people a sneak peek or a behind-the-scenes look at the company and its employees. It establishes authenticity and helps the customers know the company a little better.

 Increase the amount of money you make by putting Instagram Stories to work for you

Increase the amount of money you make by putting Instagram Stories to work for you

Why businesses should not ignore using Instagram Stories

Instagram is growing at record speed and is the fastest growing social media platform with 700 million active users monthly. It’s second only to social media giant Facebook. Ignoring Instagram Stories in your marketing strategy is like wanting a cupcake instead of the whole birthday cake. 

If you ignore Instagram, then you’re not reaching a huge demographic of potential customers. Instagram is most popular among those under 35. Its popularity has grown exponentially since Facebook lost some of this demographic due to privacy mishaps and controversy. 

Instagram offers a fresh platform that emphasizes visual media and frankly more fun with humorous photos and videos. You might say it’s the lighthearted more uplifting side of social media.

 Instagram Stories adds another dimension to the user experience. 📸: Buffer

Instagram Stories adds another dimension to the user experience. 📸: Buffer

Before Instagram Stories came out in August of 2016, Instagram users complained of how difficult it was to promote their links or websites. Basically, the only way to do that was via the link you provided in your profile or by suggesting that people visit your website.

Now, Instagram Stories provides you with a new and effective way to drive traffic back to your website or blog. Below, is a list of four ways to use Instagram to drive traffic to your brand:

Add links to your Instagram Stories

Once your Instagram account is verified, or if your Instagram business profile has reached the 10k followers threshold, using Instagram Stories to drive traffic to your site will be easy. You can add a link to an Instagram story simply by swiping up on the screen. This is even better than adding a hyperlink in a caption because this allows you to use photos or videos to attract interest in your link. Visuals can also be like a preview of what users can expect to see on your website or store.

 Move more inventory by adding links to your Instagram Stories

Move more inventory by adding links to your Instagram Stories

Also, it’s a good idea to call out the call-to-action by using text or a design feature (like an arrow) because the “See More” feature is tiny and easily overlooked.

Tag your profile

If you have under 10,000 followers, you won’t be able to directly add links to your Instagram Stories. You’ll be limited to using the link in your profile bio. However, there is a way to circumvent that restriction. You can tag yourself in stories by tapping the screen while posting or recording a story. Then type the “@” symbol followed by your username. Instagram will link to your username in the story, making it a clickable link to your profile.

Using this technique, you can tease your product by following it up saying “Visit my profile link for more information.” Then you’ll want to add your “@” handle in the hopes that they will want to click it. If these followers are enticed by your story, then they will be more accepting of your product and more likely to visit your profile.

Use Instagram Highlights to keep your best posts visible

Before Instagram Stories Highlights, your story would disappear in the queue of the news feed. But now, you can highlight your best and most memorable stories below your profile and above the feed. It’s what the user will first see, so this is a great way to pique the interest of potential followers and customers. 

Make live tutorials

Many users look for ways to do things better. That’s why tutorials are so popular. You save time by simply watching a video rather than thumbing through a manual or calling a customer help line.

 Sharing your knowledge via Instagram Stories is a great way to create value for customers

Sharing your knowledge via Instagram Stories is a great way to create value for customers

Instagram Stories is a way to offer your followers or customers advice and how-to steps for using your products or solving an everyday problem related to your product.

There are so many ways now to use Instagram Stories to drive customers to your site and to inform them about your products. The millions of Instagram users will expand your marketing reach, so please don’t ignore this powerful marketing tool.