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Posts Tagged ‘Web Site Traffic’


Search Engine Marketing Right vs. Wrong

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WRONG: Not targeting the correct keywords

It’s easier and more effective to win your locale. Focus your keyword and business listing efforts towards winning the area directly surrounding you. It is often counterintuitive to try and dominate an entire state or even worse, a tri-state area. Take a look at your analytics and see where your target demographic is. If your business caters mainly to a 20-mile radius, focus your keywords on specific locales in that area.

For example, “NY Honda Dealer” is much more difficult to win and when you do, you can’t guarantee that those impressions are from people within your target demographic. Instead, try focusing your keywords to specific towns you want to target (ie, NYC or Manhattan). There’s a big demographic difference between Buffalo, NY and Midtown Manhattan.

WRONG: Forgetting to use negative keywords

When setting up a pay-per-click campaign, many people forget to include negative keywords. These are keywords that you don’t want your ad to show up for when they are searched. For example, if you’re a Honda car dealer you may want “Honda dealer” in your database, but you don’t want your ad to show up when someone looks for a Honda motorcycle dealer. Therefore, “motorcycle” should be in your negative keyword database.

Covering substantial ground with negative keywords ensures that your ad appears when you want it and you don’t waste valuable ad dollars.

WRONG: Not using a tracking number

Wouldn’t it be great if every person who called you because they saw your ad could be differentiated from everyone else? 800 tracking numbers are common when trying to assess the effectiveness of your ad. By using a unique 800 number on each ad source, you can see which investments have the most success in attracting calls and adjust your online marketing dollar deployment accordingly.

WRONG: Not A/B testing

The art of A/B testing is crucial to successful PPC campaigns. An A/B test is where you take your ads and change some of the copy, especially titles, to see which ad is more effective in attracting clickthroughs. Some ads focus on price, while others may focus on service, selection or buyer benefits. The market will click the ad that’s most relevant to what they want. Guess work isn’t necessary when you can test the market in real time. Don’t waste precious ad dollars on ineffective ads.

WRONG: Improperly tracking your clickthroughs

The best way to measure how effective your SEM efforts are is to properly record analytics. When linking to your website in a PPC ad, it is important to build a reference URL that can be tracked. Google offers a free URL building tool that can be found at: http://www.google.com/support/analytics/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=55578

URL building lets you specify your campaign’s source, medium, term (if using paid keywords), content and name. So instead of simply linking to www.bullseyenj.com to find out how our ad performed, we can link to:

http://www.bullseyenj.com/?utm_source=google&utm_medium=email&utm_content=marketing%2Btips%2Bto%2Bavoid&utm_campaign=email%2Bblast

Your Google Analytics (a whole topic on its own) can identify these specialty links and will sort them by the signifiers specified (in this example, source, medium, content or campaign).

RIGHT: Measure everything

The most important part of analyzing your ad campaigns is to have the most data possible. By following the above methods, you’re guaranteed to use your ad budget more effectively. More importantly, you can hold yourself accountable.

What To Do If Your Website Has a Google Penalty: Google Analytics

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Check your Google analytics (or your web stats program) to see when the problem first started occurring. You will quickly be able to see where the dip in web site traffic occurred and allow you to associate with what possible internet marketing efforts where conducted at that time for the problem to occur.

In conclusion, be sure you have covered all of these bases. Spend time learning search engine optimization best practices and Google’s webmaster guidelines as well

What To Do If Your Website Has a Google Penalty: Google Webmaster Tools

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If you don’t have Google webmaster tools installed on your website yet even without the penalty this should be the very first step you take. Google webmaster tools allows you to see what types of links are pointing directly to your site. This will be a very good and important starting point for your investigation. Once Google webmaster tools is installed take a step back and go through all your links. Make sure none are pointed to any spammy or irrelevant websites. If you have found any that might not be right for your website you will have to contact blog and website owners to remove the links. By installing Google webmaster tools on your site you also show the search engines that you have nothing to hide and you welcome them to look at your efforts.

More Pay-Per-Click Mistakes Most People Make: Paying for Negative Keywords

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Google and other search engines allow you to report keywords for which your ads should not be shown. If you’re paying for “broad match” keywords, you’ll see a lot of web site traffic from people who have typed your keyword with the word “free”, “stock”, or “jobs”. Do you want to pay money for visitors who’re looking to pay $0 for what you sell? Do you want to pay money for visitors who are researching stock info on what you sell? Be sure to use that “negative keyword folder” to get rid of these worthless clicks.

Pay-Per-Click Mistakes Most People Make: Lack of Tracking

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You must be able to track every visit to your site from PPC advertising by the exact keyword, campaign, and ad group used. To do so you can set variables or integrate your PPC campaigns with your website analytics software. This is the only way you can really calculate the effectiveness of every keyword you use to build website traffic.

Common Pay-Per-Click No-Nos: A Lack of Affiliate Control

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The company name usually is the keyword that leads to the most web site traffic conversions. Your affiliates know this and advertise under your company’s name in paid search engine marketing. What happens is that not only do you now have to pay your affiliate for the sale they brought you, but you’ve already paid your due with your own advertising methods for that customer to know your name before the search. Be sure to prevent your affiliates advertising in paid search engine marketing for your company’s name. All they are doing is collecting the cash from your own internet marketing New Jersey advertising.

Common PPC Mistakes: Too Many Fraud Networks

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Every paid search engine, such as Google, Yahoo, or Bing, has a network to which it distributes your ads. Unfortunately, however, many of these networks are fraudulent and do not refer quality web site traffic, thereby reducing your traffic conversions. You need to look into your web analytics and find the domain names that bring you web site traffic with a high bounce rate, usually around 90%. Google allows you to drop these domains into a “negative excluded sites” folder, while Yahoo and others make you call them to address the problem. Doing this will prevent you from paying for low quality traffic.

Common PPC Mistakes: #1 May Not Always Be A Good Thing

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Being the #1 ad in any paid search engine internet marketing results, such as automotive search engine marketing, is not always the best strategy, especially if you’re paying a lot per click and the keyword is too broad. One of the best ranks in paid search engine online marketing is #3. This is because most people do research before they buy online. As a result, being #1 could mean that you’ll attract visitors who might have not used the right keyword for their search or ones that are just starting their research. When they are ready to buy, you’ll be the last one they remember. As a result, you may have alot of web site traffic, but your traffic conversions will be low, and consequently so will you ROI.

Common PPC Mistakes: Broad Keywords

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In the next couple of posts we will talk about some of the most common PPC (paid search engine marketing) mistakes that people make in their online marketing campaigns that, if fixed, can earn any business an extra 70% of revenue or save thousands of dollars a month.

The first mistake people make is bidding on keywords that are too broad or general. Each industry has its giant keywords that bring in the most web site traffic. However, there are many more variations of those keywords that searchers are using. The more focus you put on the long tail keywords, the less your PPC campaign will cost. Also, your ads will be ranked higher if the keywords are more closely matched. Take your 100 keywords and make them into 200 by just looking at your own web statistics for exact keyword variations people use to search for your product.

Paid Search Engine Marketing NJ Can Help Test and Improve SEO NJ Organic Search

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Paid search engine marketing has an important place in testing and improving SEO NJ organic search. It’s great for immediately testing whether keywords and keyword phrases have a reasonably good traffic conversion rate to a lead or a sale.

This instant feedback can inform SEO NJ organic search content creation efforts and internal and external link strategies. Another often overlooked use for paid search engine marketing is to hone messages on SEO NJ organic landing pages in order to improve the traffic conversion rate when top SEO NJ organic listings are achieved.

You should always test the options using some form of on-off pulse testing along with a good analytics and campaign management platform.

With on-off testing, you can measure the shift away from the top ranked organic listing into the paid search listing. With this data set, you can calculate the true ROI of paid search engine marketing NJ. Subtract the cannibalized clicks from the paid click totals, and recalculate the CPC for the remaining clicks.

For example, the paid search ad gets 200 clicks at a $1 CPC, but you would have gotten half of those clicks anyway on your organic listing. Your true CPC, then, is $2 and can be used to calculate the ROI based on the online conversions through the paid listings.

Often the CPC traffic conversion rate is higher than the same clicks coming through the SEO NJ organic page because you’ve optimized the landing page. But you don’t get to pick the landing page that Google, Yahoo, or Bing select for a particular keyword or keyword phrase. If that keyword is your company name or brand, chances are the search engines are selecting your home page as the most relevant for your brand.

This means that home page web site traffic doesn’t convert as well as specific pages you’ve created for paid search engine marketing NJ. Paid search landing pages don’t need to follow the same guidelines as a page designed to rank well organically. Paid search landing pages can be more liberal with the use of Flash-embedded content or have shorter copy or leaner navigation.

Your paid search engine marketing New Jersey campaign can also be used to test changes to your well-ranked organic pages at little to no risk of losing that organic position. If you knew a different home page would convert better for brand web site traffic, in nearly every case you could make significant changes to your home page without losing your top ranking for your brand.

There may be inherent differences between the searchers who select the paid listings and those who choose the organic ones, so this experiment isn’t perfect. But it does control partially for that fact by including your current home page or keyword landing page in the mix as a control. Clone your current top-ranked page, rename it, and put it on your site with either a robots.txt exclusion or a “noindex” meta tag so if the search engines find the page they won’t think it’s duplicate content.

Once you find the ad copy and landing pages that outperform the original home page, you can decide how to adapt the organic user experience to reflect the optimal page from your paid experiment.

Horizontal Search Engine Marketing is the Way to Go

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Those new to SEO NJ have often been told to focus on one very niche topic. One narrow vertical. That has commonly been considered the way to gain credibility, readers, links, and ultimately build website traffic, which assuming the blog/site itself isn’t your primary source of income, could lead to online conversions. But is keeping it narrow really the best way to go?

Another way to go would be to cover as much ground as you possibly can. Throw a wide net out there and see what you catch. Once you see what you’ve caught, maybe you can catch more in the same area. The thinking is that the more ground you cover, the more people you are potentially exposing your work to. It’s going horizontal, rather than vertical.

The more resources you have, the better off you will be, of course. That is why big companies, like car dealerships, with deep pockets find the horizontal content angle so attractive. They can afford to pay to have a lot of people create content. In automotive search engine marketing, they can afford to bid on keywords across the board.

But just because it’s easier for a big company to go horizontal, that doesn’t mean the small SEM experts can’t keep the same principle in mind. Small businesses can find success in e-commerce, despite the fact that Amazon and Walmart are only a click away. The same goes for horizontal content sites.

If you’re going to go the route of trying to cover as much ground a possible, it doesn’t mean that quality should be sacrificed. It’s not about quantity over quality. Search engines like quality, and more importantly, so do users (who also like to share quality content via social networks). Search engines like Google want to deliver the highest quality results possible to the user, and they’re getting better and better at doing this as time progresses.

You may not be an expert in everything. Who is? There are different ways to construct quality content in areas you are less familiar with. For one, obviously, you can get SEM experts to write content for you in any given niche. You can also perform thorough research before tackling a specific topic. The more you learn along the way, the more knowledgeable you will be anyway, and what is an expert if not someone that has a thorough understanding of a subject?

If you can cover more ground, you can attract a wider audience, which means more web site traffic, which means more eyeballs, which means more New Jersey advertising dollars.

Source:  Web Pro News

Bing Offers Paid Search Engine Marketing for News

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Microsoft thinks it has found a way around Google’s dominance of search engine marketing, a way to make its Bing search engine a winner.

Money.

Microsoft has suggested to high web site traffic news sites that they get unlisted from Google, by writing robots.txt files that keep them out of Google’s index, in exchange for Microsoft cash and placement on its Bing search engine.

If Microsoft is ready to take the next step, and build something like Google News for those sites it’s paying for placement, with enough online advertising to make up its costs from paying for links, then the search competition has a new front.

Bing may finally have a chance.

Let’s say a news site makes enough from a page view that they can pay their employees. The more page views the employees’ content generates, the more money they make, and the more money the website makes.

Now what if that news site decided to take Microsoft up on its offer, and the employees’ stories disappeared from the Google?

The news site would take a short-term hit to their web site traffic, and they would lose money.

But Microsoft might use co-op advertising to try and bring this web site traffic back to the news site, running ads reading, say, “read so-and-so’s article, only through Bing,” maybe with that employee’s picture. Some of these ads would run on the news site, so in addition to the link payment there’s online ad revenue coming in to the publisher.

Now let’s assume that, instead of compensating the employees based on page views, the news site just paid them a straight salary, and divorced them from its business model. Now its search deal with Microsoft becomes none of the employees’ business, just as its relationships with the advertisers on their page are none of their business.

Maybe the employees will get a raise, but that decision won’t ride on their web site traffic but the news site’s view on the employees’ writing, on their editorial contribution, and on how they help make the site look good.

You start to see how this works. But it starts with Microsoft getting its investment back. Can it generate enough online ad revenue from general news searchers at Bing to make up for whatever it pays News Corp., ZDNet, or any other content provider?

And how might Google then respond? Will it add video ads to Google News, and share that revenue with the sites who link to it? Will we then have to use two news search engines in order to find out what’s going on in the world? Only time will tell.

Google Caffeine Set to Go Live

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Google Caffeine is being rolled out and there are going to be changes in the search results.

There’s no need to panic if your rankings change for the worse with the new architecture. Just keep on doing good SEO NJ. That will surely will help you restore your rankings in the new Google.

If your web site traffic is wholly dependent on Google rankings, then there are ways to safeguard yourself from a drastic traffic drop. Go to your Google Analytics account and export all the major keywords that drive your traffic. Check your rank on multiple keywords and keep an eye on your rankings fluctuations. This way you’ll be able to spot ranking drops as soon as they occur and try to fix the problem, preventing traffic drops. If you see your rank for your major selling keyword drop, then a PPC campaign can be a quick fix for the time your SEO efforts take effect.

Local Link Building to Increase Your Website's Rank

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Have you spend alot of time looking far and wide for links to your Web site? You may be overlooking opportunities in your home town. Local business groups, such as a Chamber of Commerce or regional business council, can offer some great opportunities for links to your Web site. We’ll explore the process of finding these link opportunities on local business groups’ Web sites.

First, you’ll have to put together a list of all local business organizations in your area — even the very small ones. Then spend some time on each of their sites to find the low-hanging fruit, which is usually the member directory. Those often aren’t direct links.

That’s when most people stop their search because the obvious link opportunities aren’t present. In the process, they fail to notice other valuable links that could elevate their site into the top 10, thereby heavily increasing web site traffic conversions. It only takes a few high-quality links to make a difference.

Back to the site — did you check their pages related to your industry? Do a simple Google search, using this code for your chamber’s site: (site:chamber.com keyword). Replace “chamber.com” with the actual URL of their site, and “keyword” with broad-based terms related to your industry, such as medical, auto, attorney, etc. You may find pages that mention members in specific industries, or a place where companies in each vertical can display special offers.

Another approach is to look to see if they give direct links when they profile a company in their news section. Or find out if they need sponsors for upcoming events. Does the organization do any kind of community outreach that would draw media attention?
Of course, acquiring these types of links requires more work than simply filling out a form. They may require several e-mails, phone calls, or face-to-face meetings. Yet the effort is well worth it, in order to obtain top rankings.

Let’s say you get them to profile your company in their news section. With a small suggestion, you can get a deep link within the content to one of your main product pages with the keywords as anchor text, as well as a link to your home page. This is usually a best practice for marketing NJ.

While many would be happy with the above links, why not upgrade them? That’s accomplished by getting other sites to link to your new profile page. Every time another site links to your company’s profile, it increases the value of those links to your site, helping to build website traffic.

A link obtained from a page with external links to that page is more powerful. Many in the industry search out those existing pages with a high number of external links.

Why not reverse engineer the process? Get the links first, then get sites to link to that page. This is especially useful because sites can be hesitant to link to an e-commerce site. It’s more likely that they’ll link to a trusted page on a site, such as a Chamber of Commerce.

Now promote the company profile by all means available to build those links. This includes on your own site, online press releases, social media, blogs, and personal contacts. It’s time to call in some favors. Don’t forget your New Jersey advertising free newspaper, bloggers, and media companies.

Instead of overlooking link marketing opportunities, start exploring sites deeper. Look for more than just the easy links, which often have less value, and go after those less accessible links. The results could just be top rankings in the near future for your company.

–Source:  Search Engine Watch

How to Increase Leads and Online Conversions Part 5

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In the last post, we talked about increasing web site traffic conversions by making it easy for customers to concact and by making your call-to-actions obvious. This time we will talk about combining your call-to-action buttons with benefits and keeping contact forms short and simple.

In addition to making your call-to-action button obvious and prominent, you should also combine it with a benefit for the customer. It’s not enough to simply say “Contact Us” or anything to that degree. You should be answering the age-old question, “what’s in it for them?”. So, instead of just a simple “Contact Us”, you can say something like “Increase Your Online Conversions Now!, Contact Us”.

Next, for contact forms you should only require the information that is necessary for you to respond to the customer. So, if your fishing for leads by having a sign-up form for email newsletters, all you really need is an email address, and possibly a first name. Some people prefer to be contacted by phone, so you can also ask what method they prefer by having a two-step form. Also, make sure that every time someone fills out a form, they receive a reply acknowledging that they’ve filled out the form. This process can be automated with many email programs.

We’ve finally completed all 10 steps to increasing your web site traffic conversions. By utilizing all these steps in unison, you can greatly increase the amount of leads your website generates. Of course in tough economic times it can be difficult to generate leads, but those are the times, such as now, during which you can evaluate your website so it has a jumpstart when things start moving again.

How to Increase Leads and Online Conversions Part 4

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In the last post, I gave tips to increase your web site traffic conversions that were about being up-front about your price range and posting up pictures of your staff. In this post I will talk about making it easy for potential customers to get in touch with you, and making your call-to-actions obvious.

You should make it as easy as possible for potential customers to contact you. Your contact phone number should not be peripheral. It should definitely stand out on your website, and on every page of your website for that matter. Along with your phone number, you should make the link to your contact page prominent as well. Your website’s visitors should not have to scroll anywhere to locate your contact information. Also, you should post your contact information in the footer of your web pages, just in case the viewer is closer to the bottom of the page than the top of the page.

Next, you should make your call-to-actions as obvious and clear as possible. The call-to-action can be something like “Click Here for a Demo!” or even an email sign up form. But make the call-to-action copy short and easy to read. Also, use graphics, colors, styles, and positioning to make your call-to-action stand out. The viewer should not have to search for your call-to-action. You can minimize anything on your website that takes attention away from the call-to-action. These things may include words, images, or graphics, all of which are a type of “visual noise”. Direct your visitors to focus on the right thing, the call-to-action.

In the next post, I will give you the final two tips on increasing your web site traffic conversions. By combining all of these tips together, you can have a website that is trusted by customers. As a result, you will not only increase your rate of online conversions, but you will also build website traffic just through word of mouth.

How to Increase Leads and Online Conversions Part 3

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Last time, the tips to increase web site traffic conversions that I gave were about promoting your benefits and being the customer’s primary source of information through every phase of the buying cycle. This time I will talk about informing the customer of pricing and posting up images of your staff.

It’s important for potential customers to know that your solution is within their budget. Most people don’t expect a “set-in-stone”price on your website, but they do expect to see some sort of a price range. Having this information right up-front will allow the customer to determine right away if your solution is a feasible option, saving both you and the customer time.

Next, it is also important for website visitors to be able to associate a human face with your business. This is especially true for service businesses and also local small businesses. On your “About Us” page of your website, you should post up pictures of the staff. If you have a very large staff, then it is only necessary to post pictures of the staff that customers will regularly interact with, such as the sales staff. You can even post up videos giving some background information on the staff. Show how down-to-earth and friendly the staff can be. Depending on your strategy, you can show strictly professional pictures with everyone in suits, or you can show somewhat goofy pictures. The goofy pictures would be for a business that wants to connect with its audience on an emotional level, like a business involved in the local community.

In the next post, two more steps on increasing web site traffic conversions will be discussed. Those steps are making it easy for customers to get in touch with you, and making call-to-actions obvious.

How to Increase Leads and Online Conversions Part 2

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In this post, I will give you two more tips on increasing your website’s lead generation ability and increasing your traffic conversions.

The next step is to promote the benefits of your solution while still giving the facts. You should give concise descriptions of your products/services while also noting the most common questions so you can create a FAQ’s page with all the answers. Most importantly, you should note the emotional triggers that tell the benefits of your solutions. Most sales people know that creating an emotional connection is the most important aspect of a sales pitch.

Another way to increase your web site traffic conversion rate is to give the customer information during each phase of the purchasing cycle. Pertinent content directs potential customers from one phase to the next. During the research phase, be their primary resource for information. Post relevant videos to capture their attention. Retrieve their contact information by having them sign up for an email newsletter or an event. During the comparison phase, when the customer compares you to your competitors, you can have success stories, case studies, checklists, and guides that will give the customer more faith in your business. And finally, during the decision phase you should offer value-purchases, deals, and guarantees (that you can deliver on) in order to reassure the customer that they are making the right decision in choosing your business.

4 tips down, 6 tips to go, so stay tuned…

How to Increase Leads and Online Conversions

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For service firms and businesses involved in complex sales processes, such as an online marketing company or online agency, the main objective of the website isn’t to direct customers to a shopping cart; the main objective is to convince the site’s visitor to contact the business. The main objective of the website is to generate leads for the sales team so it can convert that web site traffic into business.

In order to make sure that your website is giving you the most amount of leads possible, you need to view your site from a prospect’s point-of-view. In this post, and the next few to come, I will describe a few simple steps, 10 to be exact, that you can take to ensure that your website is a lead generating maching.

The first thing you need to do is establish credibility. You can start by creating rapport with prospects as soon as they reach your website. Make sure your website has a headline that creates a positive, reassuring feeling in the visitor; instead of a simple “welcome”, make your headline say something like “you’ve reached the only website you’ll ever need for (your industry)”. This tactic encourages people to stay on your site and even click a link or two. This will give you the opportunity to earn their trust. The first impression the visitor gets of your website will influence his/her view of the rest of the site. Make sure you speak to your visitors in a professional manner when you are telling the benefits of your solutions. Of course, you need to let them know what’s in it for them.

The next thing you need to do is quickly respond to all inquiries in a timely manner. Whatever way you receive the inquiry, whether it’s by phone, email, blog comment, or social media, you need to respond quickly in order to build confidence and trust with the prospect. The ideal response time is within an hour. This way you can also nurture the lead before it changes its mind or goes to another business.

In the next post, I will give you two more steps that will enable your website to maximize traffic conversions.

Geo-Target for Paid Search Engine Marketing

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Do you geo-target your paid search ads? If you only sell products to certain areas, then you most likely do. If you sell products nationally, you most like do not. But that may be a mistake.

Most people geo-target for two reasons: either to support the geographic areas their business supports, or for local promotions or events. While geo-targeting is perfect in those situations, sem experts agree that using geo-targeting in your regular campaigns can have some crucial advantages, even if you already have a successful paid search account.

So why should you geo-target your successful paid search engine marketing campaign? Well, geo-targeting provides an additional layer of data that is more profound than the keyword level. It complements the knowledge of which keyword is performing by adding information about which state a keyword is performing in. This enables your bidding decisions to be made with better data based on certain regional factors:

  • Competition: The number of advertisers is different for each region. So your CPCs will be very different.
  • Product price: New York advertising may cost more than New Jersey advertising. So, your CPA metrics should be different for each region, because revenue will vary based on location. This impacts your ROI and, consequently, your allowable CPC.
  • Online Conversions rate: Some locations are in better economic situations than others, and are more likely to purchase and get traffic conversions. In other cases, one location may have users that are more Internet savvy. Many factors can affect your online conversions rate, and these factors will vary by geography.
  • Brand awareness: Your brand may be stronger in some parts of the country. This might be based on the way various media is purchased, or store locations. This difference will impact your CTRs, and therefore your quality score.
  • Ad copy: It may be hot in Miami and cold in Buffalo. There are also geographical differences in what things are called, or ways things are talked about, i.e. sub vs. hoagie. The message in your ad copy could target these differences.

In order to implement this strategy, you can replicate any given campaign exactly as it is. For example, if you have a campaign called “marketing,” copy it and call it “marketing NJ” or “marketing New Jersey” for targeting New Jersey (or whatever region you like).

In regards to the original “marketing” campaign, you can either remove New Jersey or keep it national. I suggest you keep it national, so that those prospects who can’t be identified geographically are still able to see your ad. This is especially important if that campaign is already working well, and allows your campaigns to maintain current web site traffic levels.

The only downside to this is the duplication of your keyword list. If you were managing 200 keywords in your “marketing” campaign, you will now be managing 400 keywords across both campaigns. This will add work to your bid management and reporting duties. But the impact this will have to your campaign metrics will more than justify the slight workload increase.

Think about the states or locations that will get you the most online conversions. In order for this strategy to work, you don’t have to select a single state, though that would make it much easier for reporting the data. It can be a collection of states, locations, cities, etc.

The idea is to go deeper than your keyword level, gain profound insights into how your campaigns are performing, and optimize against that data.

Experience is Key for Any Online Agency

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By now, all you small businesses must know that having an internet presence is necessary for your business to succeed.  It’s certainly not enough to just have a website.  You need an entire comprehensive internet marketing strategy.  A good online agency will offer a greatly scalable website, SEO capabilities, an SEM campaign, and e-commerce solutions, all tied together with trackability.  But how do you know which agency you should go with?

The first thing that comes to mind is experience.  Has the agency that you are considering had enough experience in the marketplace?  Is it capable of innovation when it comes to new and exciting marketing ideas.  Agencies with experience have had the time to develop strategies to keep up with the pace of the marketplace.  These are usually the agencies that are leaders in their areas of business.

The second thing is, of course, the online marketing services that the agency offers.  Does it just offer website hosting, or just website development?  Does it offer an entire comprehensive package of marketing tools?  It would be best for you if you can consolidate your marketing strategy into one agency and not have to go to a number of separate agencies for each service.  For example, if you are a car dealer, it is not enough for your agency to just offer automotive search engine marketing.  It should offer search engine marketing, along with organic search engine optimization, website development, website hosting, database marketing, etc.  Again, larger companies with more experience will most likely fit this bill.

Finally, the agency’s reputation for increasing not only web site traffic, but also traffic conversions should be the deciding factor if you’re still on the fence.  Being able to carry out a comprehensive internet marketing strategy is all well and good, but if it doesn’t increase your traffic conversions then what are you really paying for?  The ability to increase online conversions should always be the bottom line for any online agency.

Budgeting for Your Online Marketing Department

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You need to budget as much as you can into your online efforts.  If you hire an internet marketing firm, you should redirect a good portion of your marketing budget towards that endeavor.  However, if you decide to tackle your online marketing efforts on your own, you need to keep a few things in mind when budgeting.

There’s a lot that goes into an online marketing department.  Of course you have to hire staff (creative staff for the writing and design, and IT staff for logistics).  You need to get proper equipment, which includes a top-of-the-line computer (you definitely don’t want to deal with lag when running an internet marketing campaign).  You need to have software so your internet marketing department can do its work.  You need to have tracking programs so you know how much web site traffic your online campaign is building.

It’s like going to Vegas, or Atlantic City for us Jersey folk.  To win big you need to play big.  The more you invest, the more return you can potentially see (of course there’s always the chance that you’ll fail completely, but what’s business without risk).  Of course with all the required investments in creating your own online marketing department, the bill can run up pretty high.  If you’re a small business, you might want to consider hiring an online marketing company.  But if you can afford to allocate the necessary funds into an in-house online marketing department, then by all means do so.

Measuring Web Site Traffic Through Data Analytics

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Why is data analytics important? Well, have you ever tried to manage something that you haven’t measured? You could throw yourself into the deep end of a pool, but if you don’t know how to swim then you’re going to drown. So how do you stay afloat?  You need to invest in measuring and tracking services for all of your web site traffic.

First of all, you need to be able to measure your sheer traffic volume.  Traffic volume is the general number of visitors to your website, whether they were online conversions or not.  This can give you a clear picture of how many web surfers are even reaching your website, from anywhere on the web.  This number is also important because it gives you something to measure everything else against.

Secondly, you need to measure traffic quality.  What is the bounce rate of your website?  How much time are your visitors spending on your website?  These things are important to measure in order to gauge how well your website keeps the attention of its visitors.  By measuring this against the traffic volume, you can see what percentage of your visitors is actually staying on your website, versus just looking at it for a couple of seconds and then hitting the back button (or any other way to get off a website so quickly).

Thirdly, you need to determine your traffic sources and measure how many visitors you are getting from each one of those sources.  This allows you to see where you are getting your visitors from and enables you to allocate more resources to those traffic sources.  You can measure this against traffic quality to see where the most interested visitors are coming from (from which website or link they are being redirected).  You can also measure this against traffic volume in order to determine the percentage of visitors from each source.

Fourthly, you need to measure your traffic conversions.  Making that sale, i.e. getting that conversion, is the goal of your business.  By measuring traffic conversions, you can see how well you are doing in each category.  By measuring traffic conversions against all of the above mentioned kinds of data, you can determine where most of your online conversions are coming from, how long each conversion spends on your website, and the percentage of total visitors that become online conversions.

Lastly, you need to determine how often you should analyze these data points.  This depends entirely on your business and your industry.  It also depends simply on your preference.  Some people like to have daily numbers, some like weekly, or monthly, or quarterly, or even annually.  The point is that you need to figure out how often you need the data reports in order to be on top of your game.  But that is entirely up to you.

Again, these numbers individually won’t mean much.  A number by itself is just a number; but together, these numbers will paint a very clear picture of the health of your business.  With all of this knowledge, you’ll be able to do everything that is necessary in order for you business to thrive.  If you know how to swim, into the deep end you go.

Localizing SEO for More Qualified Traffic Conversions

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Local SEO is much simpler than general SEO. Here’s why. Take for example our company, Bulls Eye Marketing. We describe ourselves as a New Jersey advertising firm rather than just simply an advertising company. This is because it is much simpler to win local keywords rather than generalized keywords for which there is much more competition.  There are alot more internet marketing firms in the entire world than there are here in New Jersey.

If you own a mom and pop pizza shop, there is no way in hell that you are going to win the keyword “pizza”. The huge corporate chains will always have monopolies on those words. So, your goal must be to win the keywords that are specific to your locale. After all, if you’re located in Central Jersey, then someone in Northern California will not care about your pizza shop. You should try to win over the keywords that specify your locality so you can bring in new business from around your area. But the challenge here is to define your parameters.

In order to define your geographic parameters, you should identify where you are already getting business from. Let’s say that everyone in your town already comes to your pizza shop for all their pizza needs. But if you go one level broader, let’s say your township, you can still do much better. So you should then run your SEO campaign for your township. You should simply run your online marketing campaign for the market that you are not winning. In our case, we try to win the keywords with the localities of New Jersey and Central Jersey.

Of course this means that you will receive much less web site traffic than if you were to win the keyword “pizza”, since “pizza” will be utilized by everyone in the entire country, or maybe even the world; but the rest of the country is not your concern when it comes to selling pizza. You’re trying to win over you own geographic location. So your overall web site traffic might be less, but the precision of targeting your locality will result in better and more qualified traffic conversions.

Blogging for SEO to Get Online Conversions

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Blogging is not just for running public relations/reputation management campaigns.  It can and should also be used for SEO, or search engine optimization.

Search engine optimization is a way to get your business at the top of a Google or Yahoo search results page. This is the most effective form of search engine marketing, or online marketing. If you use Google to search for the service/product that your business provides, does your business show up on the first page of results? How about the second page? Maybe the third page? Does it show up at all? Chances are that your business is nowhere to be found.

Most people these days use search engines to perform product/service research before they buy anything. And more than half of the activity on the Internet is on search engines. So what does this mean for your business? You need to get indexed on search engines so people can see your business when they are searching for a product/service that they need. If you do get indexed, then you will probably have an almost exponential increase in business since the marketing potential of the Internet is unlimited.  You’ll increase your web site traffic and get more online conversions (which can be anything from form sign-ups to actual sales).

So how do you get indexed? Well, that’s where blogging comes in. But first you must understand how search engines work. Suppose you go to Google and search for “New Jersey advertising”.  Without getting into the technical aspect of it, especially since that would take up a couple of blog entries itself, simply put Google will run through the entire World Wide Web and find the sites with the most occurrences of the phrase “New Jersey advertising”. “New Jersey advertising” here is a keyword.

If you blog for your company, then you can utilize relevant keywords so when people search for the service that you provide, your business will come up. So the point of blogging is to win those specific keywords that are relevant to your business. And since blogging is very frequent, it is easy to win keywords since you can use them over and over and over again.  Industry experts, like these guys, agree that blogging may be the most effective form of search engine optimization.

But getting indexed on that first page of Google isn’t the last step.  After you’ve run a successful blogging campaign, which can take a while, your website needs to be able to get traffic conversions.  Let’s say your an online marketing company in New Jersey, like us.  Once you’ve been indexed on Google and someone searching for “SEO NJ” clicks on your site, your site needs to be able to make the sale or get that person’s information.  To get the maximum amount of online conversions, you can have people fill out submission forms for email newsletters, videos, and other things of that nature.  Then you can simply follow up on all your leads.  But that’s a story for another day.

Build Website Traffic by Keeping Your Website Updated

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The internet is a great forum to cultivate A.D.D. habits. Most people using it get bored very quickly. A big reason why a lot of websites start out good but then fall off the radar is that they are not updated. Any online marketing company can tell you that your website’s structure, layout, and content plays a big role in your online marketing efforts (that is why website development should be a part of your internet marketing strategy).  As a result, your website needs to be updated regularly. That doesn’t mean that you need to constantly add new content every second. But it does mean that it heavily depends on your industry.

Let’s say that you are a car dealer.  Automotive search engine marketing, or more specifically SEO, is almost necessary to build website traffic.  You need to keep your website updated with new car models, new deals, or even future concept cars from the manufacturer.  Your website’s job is to keep the audience interested and entertained.  Imagine if all the car enthusiasts in your area went to your website.  Even if they go there to just be entertained (by any interactive media you may have on the website, or just videos) chances are that they will buy from you when looking for their next car.  In other words, the more you keep your website updated, the more traffic conversions you will get.

If you regularly update your website with new content relevant to your industry, you can seem like THE industry expert.  Most people don’t want to be sold, especially by any random schmoe who doesn’t know about the product/service itself, but rather knows only how to sell the product/service.  Most people want to know that they are getting solid, factual information from people who know what they are talking about.  By keeping your website updated regularly, you can be that person/business.  Your website can be THE place that people go to for information regarding your industry.  Take us for example.  We are an online marketing company that specializes in co-op advertising, database marketing, mobile marketing, automotive search engine marketing, reputation management, and website development.  We consider ourselves to be SEM experts.  As an internet marketing best practice, we keep our main website, which is other our blog site, constantly updated.  We blog about online marketing techniques, online marketing services, and current events in the world of online marketing.  Even though we really just got the ball rolling, by updating regularly we will soon have enough content on our site to be considered scholars or experts in the industry.  Once we’ve accomplished that goal, once we’ve established ourselves as industry experts, getting traffic conversions will be much easier.  When people think that you are an expert in your industry, they rightly assume that you know what you are doing.  You will no longer have to go out of your way to sell, as your expertise will sell itself.

So, depending on whatever industry your business is a part of, you’ll need to update your website daily, weekly, monthly, or whatever consumers of your industry demand (aren’t we all at the mercy of our customers). But beware, once you start updating your content more quickly, your site visitors will expect the content to be updated in that same frequency for the rest of your site’s lifespan. So be like the tortoise, start out slow and pace yourself. You can regularly update your site with new content such as pics, videos, or even text. That way, your regular visitors won’t abandon your site completely.