Why You Need a Content Management System

Are you tired of waiting for changes to be accepted before they’re made live on your web site? A content management system can change the way you look at your website. One of the main benefits of using a CMS to maintain your site is that you don’t need any knowledge of HTML or programming to make updates. Making changes to your site is now was easy as blogging.

Features and Benefits of a CMS
Check out the search engine friendly web design we’ve created for Dr. Mike Dow. Creating or editing a new page is easy to do with the fields provided in the “backend” of the site. You can also add meta tags and descriptions that correspond to your page’s content. Need to add pictures of video? No problem.

A CMS is useful if you need to make frequent updates to your site. This means adding resource articles, blogging regularly or updating events. Did we mention that consistently adding relevant content to your site is good for SEO? With a CMS, you can go about adding content whenever and wherever you need without having to worry about interfering with the site design.

If your website does not currently have these user-friendly features, it’s time to think about a web content management system. As we’d like to think of it, out with the old static site and in with the new user-friendly CMS! Don’t forget to check out our Organic CMS for more information.

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.

Halloween Edition: Scary SEO Mistakes That You Can Avoid

Let’s take a Halloween inspired look at how you can steer clear of some SEO mistakes:

1) Not targeting advertising keywords – If you offer funeral planning services, did you ever stop to think how many competitors you will have on a national and even global level? Yes, using “funeral planning” make sense but don’t forget to throw location specific terms in there. Los Angeles funeral planning and Kalamazoo funeral planning target an exact audience while also including the broad term. In other words, be like those psycho killers in the movies for once: know what you want and don’t stop until you get it!

2) Not tracking your efforts: Do follow analytics on a regular basis? If not, you’re missing out on a whole lot, including what terms users are searching for when clicking on your site and even how long they spend on the site. Nothing compares to numbers to track your SEO progress. You should also see how your rankings change on a monthly basis. Being on page 1 versus page 2 of a search engine results page makes a HUGE difference.

3) Lacking consistency: Unlike web design, SEO success is not something that you can achieve by just doing one thing and declaring it done. In order to gain and maintain your search engine rankings, your writing should be consistent. The best SEO efforts are those that are ongoing and where you create helpful and relevant content that is related to your keywords and customers.

4) Using duplicate content: There’s just something creepy about duplicate content that makes it as bad as twin children in horror movies! Whether it’s submitting to article directories, putting it on your site or another domain, duplicate content is a big no-no. Search engines don’t look favorably on duplicate content so stick to keeping things fresh! Not to mention that users certainly don’t appreciate seeing the same thing over and over again..

Have a Happy Halloween and keep these SEO tips in mind! Of course, I can’t leave you without one last scare… the creepy Snickers lady!

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.

5 SEO Plugins for WordPress

Before you start blogging, you might want to consider some of these SEO plugins. They’ll help search engines find and crawl your content:

1) All-In-One SEO Pack – No blog should be complete without this tool. It’s a quick and simple way to enter all your keywords, tags, meta information, categories and more.

2) Google XML Sitemaps – This useful plugin will notify search engines every time a post is updated. This is the most efficient way for search engines to find and index all your blog content.

3) SEO Slugs – This plugin improves SEO visibility by automatically renaming the post’s file name . It will remove words that aren’t necessary in the eyes of search engines – words like “a”, “in”, and “if”. Optimized titles will help your blog get crawled more efficiently.

4) SEO Smart Links – If there’s one thing search engines like, it’s interlinking or self-linking within your own blog posts. This shows that your content is relevant and connected. This plugin automatically links keywords in your posts with other corresponding posts.

5) Simple Tags –  Simple Tags allows you to mass edit tags, suggest related tags, create tag clouds and more. It’s an easy tool to manage all your tags from one place.

What are some of your favorite WordPress plugins?

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.

Social Media and SEO: The Perfect Pair

Emarketed social media advertising and SEOEver have a client (or someone else) ask you what the point of social media is? They may tell you, I already have a new website and I do SEO and PPC – why would I need social media?

Let’s now take a look at some ways that social media and search engine optimization go hand in hand:

Boosting Organic Search Results

Believe it or not, participation on social sites counts as content. Search engines are constantly changing to adapt to this when displaying results. You’ll be surprised at how you’ll benefit with consistent participation. I’ve Googled my name a couple times and see my comments or “Likes” on Facebook Pages in the results. Just as you blog and optimize videos with advertising keywords, you can also incorporate this strategy when making updates.

Staying Visible in Real-Time

Using social networks increases the immediate visibility of your brand. We currently have a client whose site doesn’t show up in a search of one of their common aliases but their Twitter account does. This will help them while SEO is in the works. There are also real time search engines like Twitter Search and 48ers where users can look up any word. You can think of social media advertising just like another form of offsite promotion or in a way, linkbuilding.

Getting Back to Your Goal

In the end, social media makes sense when it comes back to your goal – bringing relevant traffic to your site. Social media sites make it so simple to share. More sharing = more clicks = more conversions. With that being said, social media cannot replace your traditional marketing efforts. It’s a flexible tool that complements your other strategies and site assets. Just think of it as another useful tool in your tool belt!

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.

4 Common SEO Mistakes

Search engine optimization is considered to be an art to some and a science to others. I’d like to look at it as a mix of both. No matter what you believe, it’s important to avoid these common mistakes:

  1. Forgetting about keyword research – People often feel tempted to use the first words that come to mind. Remember, it’s not about the words YOU think are relevant to your business, but what customers think. Keyword research is important to see if anyone is actually looking for specific words/phrases.
  2. Feeling too attached to general keywords – Many times people aren’t too thrilled about niche keywords or phrases that include a location. They may have their mind set on “dog groomer” when what they really need is “Los Angeles dog groomer”, “gentle dog groomer” etc.
  3. Expecting too much – Clients can sometimes get frustrated with SEO as a service because it’s not tangible and it can take a while to see results. This means that you won’t instantaneously show up under relevant keywords, so don’t trust anyone that tells you otherwise! Patience will be your best friend as consistent SEO is a long-term investment.
  4. Linking with useless anchor text – Resist the urge to link with words like “Click Here”. Example:
    Bad: Click here to learn more about internet marketing design.
    Good
    : Learn more about internet marketing design today!

Is there anything else you’d like to add? Remember, the best way to avoid the pitfalls of SEO is to get educated or ask the experts for help.

internet marketing design

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.

Six of SEO’s Most Troublesome Myths

By its very nature, the realm of search engine optimization is laden with a wide variety of myths. This can make life difficult for anyone trying to get their start in SEO, or for seasoned veterans, who are discovering their time-honored practices to be letting them down. Here are a few of the most troublesome myths I’ve encountered, and the real answers behind them.

Meta Tagging is the Place to Start SEO

Every site needs to have meta-tagging. Just not for the reason everyone thinks. Other than maybe a title tag, there isn’t much that the so very often keyword-stuffed meta tags can offer a website, at least from an SEO perspective. Search engines have learned, for the most part, that these fields shouldn’t be trusted. That’s not to say you shouldn’t waste your time on them, though: More often than not, your listing on the Google results page will be gleaned from that meta description, so it’s a critical step in selling your site to searchers.

The Duplicate Content Penalty

I’m just not sure how this myth ever got started; it just doesn’t make any sense! Imagine a mild-mannered blogger, just writing for fun. That blog’s content gets scooped up by a big, bad, black-hat SEO, and scattered across the web. Google can’t condone the copy-and-paste practices that made that post get copied across the web, but they don’t want to punish that blogger for writing! So, and forget they ever saw the copies, but they offer normal SEO credit to the original.

From a purely SEO standpoint, it’s still a bad idea to use duplicate content, but only because you’ll be throwing away you time on material Google won’t be considering.

“Bad Neighborhood” Links

Many website owners fear sites from “bad neighborhoods,” worrying that links from these domains will pull their own website over to the wrong side of the tracks, damaging their rankings. But just as Google knows a creator of content cannot control who snags their copy, and shouldn’t be penalized, a site owner cannot control who is linking to them, and will not penalize that owner. Of course, if your site returns links back to those bad-news sites, that’s a whole different story–don’t do it.

Flash=Bad SEO?

Accuse me of being biased if you will, but as someone whose portfolio is built almost entirely in Flash, I can tell you that it is not as bad most people think. Okay, it’s not great, either, but for the right kind of site, the benefits of a partially-Flash site can outweigh the drawbacks. As time goes on, search engines are learning to extract more and more from Flash animations, all while site designers are developing new ways, such as XML importing, and internal linking techniques, which are helping them make their content more Google-legible. It won’t be the best-SEOed site out there, but a Flash site won’t be left out in the cold anymore.

Link Swap

One of the biggest trends in small business and small blog SEO right now is the link exchange. While this does have some benefits, I’m not sure that it has enough. Search engines are very good at detecting these boomerang links, and have deprecated their worth to a large extent. Not to mention, there is the risk of a naive site owner being burned by a received link which isn’t worth what was handed out. Also, and maybe this is just me, but I don’t like having too many links cluttering up my site. For most SEOs, the best practice is to link naturally; if you like the site, and think your users will, then link away!

SEO Is a Sinister Process

One of the most virulent myths in the interactive marketing community is that SEO is an awful process, conducted among secret societies who mastermind sneaky strategies that will help their clients jockey for Google’s top spot. Not (always) the case, or, at least, it doesn’t have to be. The heart of SEO simply involves presenting the content of a website to its natural audience, then reaping the benefits in the form of Google placement. Search engine optimization is a technique and a skill, which, like anything else, can be abused. Just as any other form of marketing can falsely advertise and misrepresent their products, SEO can allow a site to misrepresent itself to an audience, and gather undeserved benefits.

Brandon Rhodes works for Response Mine Interactive, specializing in online customer acquisition through search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, and more. Follow Response Mine on Twitter: @Responsemine.

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.

Successful Social Media Advertising Provides Value

Most people can agree that the most effective social media advertising campaigns are the ones that provide real value. With this in mind, more companies are creating resources that solely exist to provide customers with information and help solve their problems. I came across this link on Twitter and thought that the Visual Economics site is a great example.

You’ve probably seen these infographics passed around on social media sites but did you know that it’s owned by Credit Loan?


From using ice cream to explain certificate of deposits to visual maps such as this, Visual Economics is an informative site whose sole purpose is to inform. It’s not until I went to check out their Twitter and Facebook Page that I noticed the affiliation. This is a great example of shareable content but it obviously takes a lot of time and effort to compile a whole different site for consumers.

What are some other sites that you’ve found helpful and who are they affiliated with?

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.

What’s Your Link Building Focus?

When it comes to link building do you have a particular focus or do you have a diversified plan? Blogs, directories, paid links, reciprocal links – there are so many options!

Pay Attention to Nofollow Links
Did you know that many popular blogs and even Google Sites apply the nofollow feature to links? This prevents spammers and link abuse. Basically, nofollow links tells the search engine crawlers to not count your link. It doesn’t mean that you should avoid nofollow links all together though. These sites are still a great place to be social and join in on the conversation.

Different Types of Directories
Every directory is not the same! The most popular ones are dmoz and ipl2. Generally speaking (and thanks to Rand Fishkin) there are 3 types of directories that you can submit to:

  1. Specific directories that are categorized by topics or industry. (ThomasNet is the most popular for industrial suppliers.)
  2. Local directories are helpful and you can find them through your local chamber of commerce or other online neighborhood resource.
  3. Generic directories. You’ve probably come across worlds-best-internet-director-1000 or something similar. Again, targeted directories are more preferred than these kinds.

Other Sources for Links

  • Social bookmarking
  • Press releases sites
  • Niche forums or communities
  • Review sites
  • Social media profiles

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 Consider Mobile Phone Design Compatibility

In February this year, Jwire released a study that showed that OVER half of public wi-fi connections aren’t made from laptops. This means that more and more people are turning to their cell phones to connect to the internet. If you have a mobile device, you might notice that some websites are formatted differently for a small screen. Proper mobile web design ensures that your website will be seen no matter where your customers choose to access it! After all, nothing is more disappointing for your business or your customers if they get a jumbled mess of a website when they access it from a mobile device.

Of course, we can’t talk about mobile devices and smart phones without mentioning applications. From games, giving gifts, to getting in shape, there’s pretty much a phone app for everything you can imagine! If you’re interested in phone app development for your business, we can definitely help. Think of all the possibilities and visibility that your business will gain as your app prepares for an App Store launch.

Just something to keep in mind as you check out Mashable’s list of some top applications for 2010.

Have a great weekend everyone!

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.

Appealing Ideas from Social Media Guides

Lately, I’ve been inundated with newsletters and downloads about a “definitive” guide to social media. Although these are helpful, there is a lot of repetitive info about getting the process started. They explain what Twitter and Facebook is and the different functions, but what about some realistic tips that is helpful for everyone who aren’t newbies? How do I grow? How can I branch out and attract people? Here are some interesting ideas that I’ve come across. I hope it’s more interesting than generic recommendations out there.

  • Presentation and document sharing. .docstoc is one of many document sharing websites that allow businesses and professionals to spread their know-how. If your content is helpful, others will be willing to link to you as a resource!
  • More commenting. Nowadays, a lot of sites and blogs enable comments by signing into your Twitter or Facebook account. I like this feature because you skip the hassle of filling out info fields. It also gets rid of spammers and others who don’t have relevant comments to share. It’s a good way to increase your brand awareness on high traffic blogs like Social Media Examiner.
  • Photosharing on Flickr. As Rohit’s article discusses, photo sharing can be a great way to engage customers. With the right content, this indirect method is exciting and will tie back to your site/blog/business in the end.

I’m always on the look out for interesting tips, so don’t be afraid to share. Feel free to also connect with us on Twitter and Facebook!

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.