5 Warning Signs of a Bad SEO Firm

SEO_Agencies

Let’s face it: Virtually all industries have bad and good companies and the Search Engine Optimization field is not an exception. Signing up with incompetent SEO agencies in California can considerably harm your business.

But then, how do you figure out a bad SEO agency in California? To help you do that, this article focuses on how to recognize a poor quality SEO firm that can not only fail to drive traffic to your website but also pull it down altogether.

Below are the 5 Warning Signs of Bad SEO services California.

1. They Promise a Specific Number of Links Every Month
Companies that guarantee a set number of links per month are probably using black hat techniques or automated link building strategies. Useful links are as valuable as gold dust. They’re not easy to come by. The best links come from sites that are relevant to your industry. For instance, a link from a news article or publication that is relevant to your business tends to drive traffic to your site.

Obtaining these links can take a lot of time and work. So, there’s no way an SEO agency can guarantee a specified number of links each month unless they’re using black hat techniques.

2. They Promise to Bring In a Set Number of New Users
Whereas good SEO techniques increase website visits, it’s impossible to forecast the exact number of new users. Agencies that promise you a specified amount of traffic are simply lying to you.

And, if that promise is somehow true, you can rest assured that much of that traffic will either be irrelevant or inauthentic. Get an SEO agency that focuses on increasing traffic by looking at the overall trend instead of a quick jump up in users.

3. They Lack Transparency
Lack of transparency is one of the crystal-clear warning signs of a bad SEO agency. SEO companies that are hesitant to share their previous results most likely have nothing substantial to show you.

A reputable SEO agency should be willing to showcase their successful efforts with pride. Of course, you don’t expect perfection from an SEO firm and having a few failures in the past is unlikely to compromise your business.

You are right to choose an agency only if their success stories outweigh their previous failures. Stay away from companies that are reluctant to show you any results they’ve had with their current or past clients.

4. They Send You Cold Emails
Agencies that send you cold emails out of the blue are probably sending the same to thousands of other people. It’s a clear sign that such an agency hasn’t even taken time to research on the right clients to contact. Instead, they’re trying what is called “a quick numbers game.”

A good agency will first research your business to find out whether they can be of help to you. On the other hand, a bad SEO firm will not research your business and will employ a generic approach when doing your marketing.

seo techniques

5. They Promise Top Ranking in a Short Time Frame
Never engage in business with an agency that promises you top page ranking within a short span of time. Google does ranking periodically and not on a regular basis. There’s nothing you can do to speed up the process.

Your ranking depends on other site rankings, and it can take weeks or months. Google compares your site to other sites in the same niche to determine relevancy and popularity.

So, if someone tells you they can hasten your ranking process within a short time, it’s a hoax, and you may lose your hard-earned money if you fall into this trap. Search Engine Optimization can’t be done hastily unless it’s done poorly.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

How to Optimize Your Website for Voice Search

How to Optimize Your Website for Voice Search

Voice search is growing rapidly as a more popular option for finding information online and it not likely to slow down.

People prefer the easy hands-free option of voice search so it is crucial for marketers to consider these types of searches in the way that they approach optimization. It is possible for marketers to use SEO methods and other optimization tools to ensure that their company appears in the results of a voice search.

An important thing to keep in mind when optimizing is that the way people pose questions and use keywords with voice search is often very different than typing out a query. Understanding why and how voice search usually occurs can help you gain insight into the best ways to optimize. Specific voice queries may be more likely to be useful in directing people to your business in the results.

SEO professionals have been discovering new strategies to make use of voice search in a way that will boost a website’s rank. The ease with which people can ask questions on the go using voice search has made it beneficial for SEO marketers to get a website to appear more frequently. With voice search someone can quickly and easily find your business right when they are ready to make a purchase.

Differences in Voice Search

When people type in a search either on a computer or a phone they tend to use more succinct language. They might type in about one to three words that quickly identify the main information that they are searching for such as “Mexican restaurant LA”. With voice search it tends to be more conversational in tone since people don’t need to save time when typing and they often use more words and longer phrases.

A voice search might take the form of an actual question rather than just a couple of keywords such as “What is the best Mexican restaurant in LA?” Conversational phrases can be included in SEO strategies in order to get better results in voice search rather than focusing on short keywords.

Understanding the way that people use voice search and what takes place when it is used can help you come up with better optimization strategies.

Another aspect of voice search that makes it different from traditional searches is that it typically focuses on local results for specific items or places that people are looking for. When someone performs a voice search they often want to take immediate action because they are on the go or need to buy something. When typing a search into a computer the user is more often looking to read longer material and research a topic before they decide to make a purchase.

The type of content used to optimize voice search will work best if it is local and brief to help people make a quick decision to purchase from you. They often won’t be reading long articles or clicking through many different sites when using voice search so concise information that provides them a solution is the most effective. Reaching users when they are looking for local businesses can ensure that you are taking advantage of the possibilities of voice search.

Although traditional, computer-based searches are still important for optimization every marketer needs to familiarize themselves with voice search. If you are not optimizing for voice search then you are missing out on a great opportunity to reach customers who are looking for a business like yours. Balancing optimization for both voice search and typed searches can give you a more well-rounded marketing campaign.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

How To Choose The Right SEO Agency For You

How To Choose The Right SEO Agency For You

One study conducted in 2014 found that the first page of Google gets 95% of web traffic and that 67% of users go for one of the first five results on the first page.

Would you like your business to be on the first page and have a higher chance of attracting high-quality traffic? If you answered yes, then you need to find an SEO agency with the kind of expertise that will push your rankings forward.

In today’s age of competitive business, buying goods and services is quite tasking because there are a plethora of options available on the market. You are likely to face this challenge when choosing an SEO agency and the chances are that you might end up selecting an agency that does its marketing well but fall short with its services. If you are deciding to choose an agency to do your SEO, here’s what you need to do to get the best.

Check how long an agency has been operating

What experience does every agency you are looking into have? If an agency has been in the industry for long, then it has weathered several storms, and it is in a position to improve your rankings. New SEO agencies might know how to do SEO, but they might not be able to adapt to the ever-changing SEO requirements quickly. However, you should not discredit all new SEO agencies because some employ experts who can do the job as well as those in older agencies.

When looking at the longevity in business, you also need to check if an agency has worked with both small and big companies. If they have worked successfully with both, you can trust them because they aren’t just masters of one talent.

Gauge portfolios

Before making your final decision, you ought to compare the portfolios of several SEO agencies. If you go through their websites, you are likely to find a list of businesses that they have worked with in the past, though some might want to remain anonymous. If there is no list on the website, that’s a red flag.

An agency’s portfolio shows you the kind of businesses it serves which in turn helps you identify if it works with businesses in your niche. For instance, if you sell shoes online and the agency has worked with lots of online stores, then that’s a good sign that it can get the job done for you. Moreover, if an agency has worked with a variety of businesses, it shows that it is versatile and can adapt quickly.

Examine your goals

Your SEO strategy should have a goal at the end, for example, increase social shares by 5% quarterly. The figures of your goals should be tangible, reasonable, and attainable, keeping in mind that SEO is a field that does not achieve results overnight. That said, a good SEO agency is one that puts your goals and objectives first. Hence’ if you come across an agency that wants to begin working right away without knowing what you want to achieve, run! More importantly, the practices and goals of an ideal agency should mirror yours, so that you are always on the same page and working towards the same results.

Look for proven results

Research is pivotal when looking for an SEO agency. One of the things you need to look for before arriving at a decision is proven results. Are an agency’s past clients and employees satisfied with its services? You can get trustworthy reviews from an agency’s website.

Another great way to get unbiased opinions is to look at reviews left by previous customers on Google or Yelp. Alternatively, you can contact several past clients who have worked with a said agency to find out if they achieved the results they wanted.

Ask questions

This is one of the most critical steps that will help you determine whether an agency understands what you want and if it is the best fit.

Ask questions about:

  • The processes the agency uses
  • The resources that they need from you
  • What steps you should take when things are not done correctly
  • Their communication and reporting process for the progress of the SEO strategy

Mistakes you should avoid making

Trusting search engines as filters

The first step toward getting an agency is conducting some research, mostly via Google. When you search the best SEO agencies in your location, you’ll get some results, which you should take with a pinch salt. The best companies are busy and overwhelmed by new and retained clients. Hence they might not have all the time to do good SEO for their websites and appear on the first page on SERPs.

Believing there’s a secret method

One of the hugest red flags is agencies that tell you they have a secret SEO formula that will improve your ranking. This might have been the case a few years back but nowadays, SEO is an open field, and no one has a secret process.

Following the processes discussed above will land you an agency that does the best SEO and adapts to change quickly. For more information about SEO agencies, visit https://serpbook.com/blog/agency-rank-tracker/.

 

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

How Does Social Media Assist SEO?

How Does Social Media Assist SEO?

You may not realize how much social media actually assists with SEO Essex. Many of us just think of it as a platform for people to post selfies, updates of their life, and to stay in contact with their friends; however social media plays many more roles than we originally anticipated, including assisting SEO. Let’s take a closer look at how social media impacts SEO.

Brand Awareness

Many marketers believe that the links from your social accounts, such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, has an impact on the ranking of your site. By using social influencers, who use social media more than anyone else, they can post your content with links to your site through their channels or blogs. This link building is a very beneficial way to increase brand awareness through social media.

Social Media Profiles

Potentially, your company already has a social media profile account on various different social media platforms. If you do, this is great, as your social profiles influence the content of your search results. Due to social media profiles having a more personal feel to them, as people can relate to them by having their own profiles, they are a great way to get the personality and tone of your company across to potential clients and customers. You will find that your Twitter or Facebook page will get just as many clicks, possibly even more, than your actual site. So, if you don’t already have a social media profile, make an account, today!

Social Media Is Used As A Search Engine

Not only do people search for things on Google, but they also use social media channels, such as Twitter. People are likely to look up any of your company’s latest news or check out your business through your social media channel, so it is important that you have a clear, and up-to-date social profile, online. Search engine optimization now includes what is searched on social media, not just through original search engines, such as Google.

More Engagement

Social media encourages more engagement form your users, which is a great way to improve your site’s SEO. If the content on your company’s social media profile is shared, it doesn’t necessarily have an impact on your ranking on Google, however, the engagement from your shared content will assist your SEO.

Engagement online is a great way to improve your reputation online, in addition to it being a way to generate leads for your company.

Google And Twitter’s Partnership

Although we aren’t entirely sure what the relationship between Google and Twitter means for the future of search and social marketing, we do know that we have regularly seen relevant tweets for branded searches in Google’s search results.

Twitter posts appearing in the search results, unfortunately don’t assist your site’s SEO – but it will have an impact on your brand awareness.

Taking all of these points into consideration, social media does assist SEO in ways that you may not have originally thought of. Having social media accounts for your company/business is a really beneficial move to make, as it will improve the traffic that visits your site, through visiting your social profile first.  

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

You Can Still Get to the Top of Search Results

You Can Still Get to the Top of Search Results

Some of the theories behind SEO can make it seem impossible to succeed in getting a higher rank. The idea that sites with more backlinks rank higher and sites with a higher rank tend to get more backlinks seems like a difficult world to break into. Top ranking sites tend to earn backlinks at a much faster rate than lower ranking sites which in turn continues to establish their rank.

How can lower ranking sites move up in search results if they are not getting backlinks as quickly as top sites? Even though it may seem like a vicious cycle, studies have shown that there actually is no proof that getting links at a faster rate leads to a better ranking. This proves that backlinks are not the only answer to getting results from SEO.

There are many cases where sites are able to improve their rank simply by having high quality content rather than focusing on building backlinks. The most important aspects of a site or article is that they are informational, authoritative and offer comprehensive knowledge. High quality content has the same potential to increase search rank than an article with a lots of backlinks.

Google still ranks content based on its quality above all else and if users spend time reading your content because it proves useful in answering your questions than this will serve to increase your rank. Content with original research and new information will perform better than more cursory content. Improving your “dwell time” or the amount of time that users spend on your site can be one of the key factors in increasing your rank.

Backlinks still matter but if you are having trouble with getting enough of them to affect your rank it may be time to focus on creating high quality content that people will keep coming back to.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

10 Reasons You Should Be Using Online Marketing To Grow Your Business

For entrepreneurs and business owners, the landscape is rapidly changing in exciting ways. Many traditional ways of adver10 Reasons You Should Be Using Online Marketing To Grow Your Businesstising are quickly being supplanted by internet and social media based forms of marketing. Here are some of the ways creating a strong online presence can be some of the strongest ways to market your business in today’s world.

1. A Level Playing Field
Traditional marketing often related on mediums such as billboards and television ads, that were controlled by outside forces. They are very expensive, requiring a huge investment that smaller and starter companies often could rarely afford. By contrast, a website, that you can set up and control yourself, is much more inexpensive, and something you can do to spread the word about your business from the very beginning. This enables smaller and medium companies to be able to become just as recognizable among some people as huge corporations.

2. Cost-Effective
A report from HubSpot shows that online marketing can generate 3 times as many leads as traditional advertising, and yet cost 62 percent less. With a website, you can spend less money on content that will be seen by far more people. If you are a small business struggling to find the capital to do the necessary work of advertising, online tools are the most cost effective opportunities to let people know about the services you can provide for them.

3. Targeted Audiences
Traditional advertising is seen by everybody, with no way to control who gets the message or focus only on the people likely to be responsive. In contrast, paid online marketing allows you to choose the people who receive your marketing content, or tailor your message to a specific audience. Knowing and controlling the people with whom you communicate can dramatically increase the effectiveness of your message.

4. Building Credibility
Online communication is instantaneous and interactive. When you deliver on your promises, it can make a huge difference with your customers. The internet gives these satisfied customers a platform to share their positive experiences with others. In this way, your online presence can be significantly amplified as loyal customers become your brand ambassadors, tellings other about the services you provide.

5. Possibilities of Search Ratings
According to Internet Live States, 88.5 percent of people in the U.S. have access to the internet through a cell phone or computer. This means almost everyone has gotten used to using a search engine as one of their primary ways to find information. With the help of experts at Emarketed, we can show you how to increase your search ratings so they are likely to be found on the first page of someone’s search results. This will enable your company to come to the awareness of anyone who might be seeking your services.

6. Trackable Data
With traditional advertising, it is sometimes difficult to evaluate the difference your marketing was doing. It was often hard to tell how many people see a television or print advertisement, or how it affected their purchasing decisions. Online marketing comes equipped with different tracking and analytics tools, so you can see who visited your website or saw your content, in real time. These resources allow you to see just how effective a marketing campaign is, or whether you should make changes.

7. Give Convenient Ways To Respond
Marketing’s primary goal is to get potential customers to respond to a call to action, by buying the product or service being offered. Online marketing content can easily also be an online store, allowing someone to respond to your message instantaneously upon hearing it. This allows for a degree of impulsivity when your messsage is likely to reach maximum impact, and a convenience that creates few barriers to allow a customer to respond.

8. Test-Drive New Ideas
Whether it’s through a website, social media, or e-mails, there are a wide variety of options and different ways to create online content that communicates a desired message. There is room for creativity, trying out new things. Lower costs mean lower risks for experimenting, and seeing how effective a particular message can be. The possibilities are potentially limitless.

9. Generating Higher Revenues
For all these reasons, online marketing can greatly help your business’ revenues. According to Google, effectively used digital marketing strategies can make a business grow 2.8 times better than expected otherwise. This is especially true for smaller businesses, that can increase their revenues by as much as 3.3 times as much. Online marketing can be like rocket fuel that causes your business to take off, and find opportunities for customers that are otherwise not possible.

10. Go Where Customers Are
The internet is already being used by most people on earth, giving people access to receive information that before would not have been possible. In the future, even more people will come more and more to rely on the internet as one of their main sources of information. If your business doesn’t have an online presence, you are missing out on one of the biggest ways to attract attention to your business. Just a few simple steps can open your way to limitless possibilities for your business’ growth.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Creating an Effective Call to Action

Creating an Effective Call to Action

As compelling as your content may be, without a call to action you risk losing potentially interested customers. A call to action is essentially a line of copy telling your readers what you want them to do whether it is to visit the store, call your company or make a purchase online. If you are able to create the right kind of copy as part of your call to action or CTA you are more likely to see an increase in conversions.

Intriguing copy does not have to push too hard to make a sale but it should be direct enough that readers feel interested in following through. A balanced and effective call to action can lead to new subscribers and customers that help build your business.

Appealing and Direct Copycall to action button marketing online design page

A call to action should be both personable and persuasive, giving the reader a concrete reason why they should move forward. If you have written some interesting and informative content, at the end of the article you can include a link that will tell them where to learn more. Instead of writing something like “If you are interested in learning more click here” you can be more direct and say “Click here to buy this book and become an expert”.

The second type of call to action speaks personally to the reader and gives them an expectation and a reason to complete the transaction. It is also important to provide obvious and sometimes detailed instructions on how to take advantage of your offer because most people on the internet are busy surfing through multiple websites simultaneously. You need a call to action that tells readers where to click so you can quickly convert them to a customer.

Visually Enhancing a Call to Action

Sometimes creating an obvious call to action for busy readers can mean making something that stands out from your other content. An effective CTA will probably be the first thing a person notices when they skim the page and will lead them to read the rest of the content. While the actual copy of your CTA is important, consider visually how to attract readers with unique font or text size so that it appears differently than everything else on the page.

bCTAs should be simple statements that avoid too much of a sales tone so that readers know what to expect but are not put off by the language. When you think of how to execute a call to action, imagine yourself as the buyer and identify what might be interesting to you or would cause you to respond. An effective call to action considers what the reader is looking for and how to capture their attention.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Battling the Bots

Battling the Bots

Internet robots or bots are used to perform repetitive jobs or send automatic interactions online. Recent studies have shown that bots now account for more activity on Twitter than humans. The majority of all tweets that share links to popular websites and articles, about 66 percent, are actually shared by bots.

The most active bots on Twitter are responsible for 22 percent of all tweeted links which means that they produce four times as many tweets as the average human user. The findings suggest that bots have taken over Twitter with the amount of link sharing tweets that they are posting online. Even more alarming is that bots account for 89 percent of the links shared to news sites like Google news.

Bots can be used to manipulate the algorithms that news sites use to determine the links to articles that people see in their newsfeed. News stories then can quickly go viral and be significantly affected by link-sharing bots that are manipulating what people see online. If the goal of certain bots is political propaganda they may be able to influence what people read and what their opinions are on certain subjects.

Studies of the 2016 elections suggested that bots generated tweets promoting certain candidates. Although most bots tend to be ideologically mixed, they can have specific political agendas and a goal in mind as far the news stories and articles they are sharing. It is even possible for foreign governments to use bots as online propaganda tools in order to cause problems within the United States.

Bots can be a serious issue of integrity on the internet if they have the power of making certain stories seem more popular than others. They may have the ability to sway people’s opinion by dictating what information is exposed to them. It is something to consider for those who are concerned about the possible negative influence of bots online.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Why You Should Feature Case Studies on Your Website

Why You Should Feature Case Studies on Your Website

There are many different types of content you can feature on your website but many businesses overlook the benefits of including case studies. They can be a great promotional tool that helps demonstrate why your product or business is effective and what you can offer to potential customers. Businesses that are looking for some fresh and interesting content that will provide a boost to their marketing efforts should look into case studies.

By producing case studies you are providing customers with definite proof that your products or services work and they will be more effective than your competition. Within the case study you can include evidence with specific facts and numbers that demonstrate what your product or service is able to do for customers. The data and information you provide will give readers a compelling argument as to why they should purchase something from you.

The template for a case study usually includes an example of a client problem and how your business was able to solve it for them. This helps showcase a specific instance in which you were able to really help someone through your work. You can start working on a case study by interviewing some of your best customers to get their testimonies so that their story can be featured.

Talking to your clients can give you the information you need and they might even be able to share facts and figures you can include in the case study. Real stories that show your product or service as a concrete solution to a problem can be a major selling point to include on your website. Featuring a few case studies gives your business greater credibility because your customers are willing to share their experiences.

Case studies can be a very convincing addition to your content and including them on your website may help sway customers to make a purchase.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.