What is Bing Ads Express?

A few weeks ago, we discussed the idea of “setting and forgetting” PPC ads. Bing Ads Express has made that dream a reality!

bing-ads-express

Within Bing Ads Express, there’s an option for local businesses to utilize pay per click ads without constantly having to worry and micromanage the account. There is a simple three step process to follow and the monthly minimum required is only $50.

How Easy Is it?

Setting up is as easy as claiming your business, writing an ad, adding a payment information and setting a budget. Once it’s set up, your ads will start showing up on Bing (and Yahoo) without a few hours! The catch that Bing Ads Express is currently only available in a few select cities. Those who are lucky enough to be on the network can certainly enjoy the benefits of local PPC.

Who Will Benefit from Bing Ads Express?

Bing Ads Express seems to be aimed at small businesses. The idea is to give business owners an easy option for paid ads with a “lower bar” to enter a highly competitive market. These ad campaigns are meant to be easy and as simple as possible to set up and maintain.

What is Automated with Bing Ads Express?

Just because Bing Ads Express is easy, doesn’t mean that it can’t work to fulfill all your business needs. Bing Ads Express allows business owners to create campaigns complete with ads, ad groups, bids, and different keywords. The campaigns are also adjusted on a daily schedule to best fit your business needs.

Interested?

Emarketed is a Bing Accredited Professional Company. Contact us today about more information on Bing ads.

Read More

Bing Ads Launches Its Own “Express” Program For Local Small Businesses
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Bing Ads Express: Finding Local Customers Online Just Got Easier

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.

Is There Such a Thing As “Set It, and Forget It” PPC?

“Set it, and forget it!” is a phrase that has been made infamous by infomercial guru, Ron Popeil. This phrases has been ingrained into marketing as well as our popular culture. The idea is fantastic – having something do a task and be so convenient that you can just forget about it as it’s working. It’s not uncommon for a business owner to have this type of mentality when it comes to something like a pay per click campaign. An effective paid search campaign typically shouldn’t be set up once and let to run on auto-pilot.

set-forget-pay-per-click

Why You Need to Be Involved

Here are a few reasons why automatic pay per click campaigns aren’t helpful and why it’s useful to have an experienced PPC manager oversee your account:

1) Keep in line with long-term goals – Sometimes, paid ads are a short-term solution for a business that wants to see immediate results. If you don’t play an active role in your own PPC campaign, it might cause you to lose sight of what’s best for your business in the long run. Being aware of your PPC doesn’t mean that you need to personally monitor it hour-by-hour or day-to-day. But depending on your budget, it just might be helpful to have someone you can trust keep an eye on things as often as possible.

2) Optimize the right keywords – Another reason for using paid ads is that your site might not be ranking as high (or at all) for certain desired terms. The purpose in this case is to use PPC ads to give your site a boost where you need it. In the event that organic rankings do kick in, your paid ads might not be so effective if you’re already ranking high organically. You might spend that budget more effectively on other terms and growing your business. But this isn’t something you would know if you’re not regularly up to date with paid ad or organic search positions.

Keywords, optimization

3) Adapt to trends and seasonal changes – Different times of the year may be extremely volatile for businesses. If you’re handling your own PPC account by having it running automatically, it can be easy to forget about these occasions and make certain changes when needed. In hindsight, you may also see extreme changes that won’t make sense or be helpful as that holiday rush period is already over.

4) Keep an eye on effectiveness and efficiency – Effective PPC ads should be about more than hitting your budget of a certain dollar amount a day. If you’re hitting that mark but not seeing any increase in conversions (calls, contact forms, emails), you have to sit down and ask yourself if PPC is really doing what it’s supposed to for your business. Paid ad spend shouldn’t be exactly the same everyday, so why should you run in automatically as if it did?

Paying attention to your PPC campaign means focusing on what works and figuring out what doesn’t so that you can work to improve it or budget your resources into something that will work better.

5) Make PPC work for you, not the other way around – Paid ads can give your business an immediate boost during a dry period. For others, it’s really the lifeblood of the business. Pay per click is a tool that should make online marketing easier and more efficient for a business. If you like the idea of PPC but don’t have the time or skills to run it the right way, it won’t help to start doing it on your own. The idea is to work smarter, not harder!

Find Out More

The idea of setting and forgetting DOES exist. But you should be careful if you choose to go that route. PPC campaigns that are automatically run can be beneficial in certain cases, but not for all businesses. For more information on PPC management, click here and call us at (323) 340-4010 for a free consultation.

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 to Showcase On Your Home Page

Hot on the trail of this popular blog post about home page content, it’s time to think about your own home page. One thing is for sure, with the changing search algorithms, the “old” format of home pages will need to be transformed.

What to Showcase On Your Home Page, window

Think of your home page as a window to the rest of your website or “home”. 

What type of window is it: stained glass, decorative, bay, tinted, mirrored? What do you want people to see?

Thinking about a home page in these terms will help you think about what should be featured on an effective home page. 

Compelling Header

At first glance, a home page header says everything about your business. This is the space you want to take charge of your branding and send a strong message. This can usually be achieved with a high-quality picture paired with a strong statement or call to action.

While big headers were thought to be something to avoid in the past, they are a hot commodity nowadays. The only thing to keep in mind is the load time of the image and space you use “above the fold”. People are used to scrolling through a home page, on desktop, tablet and mobile. You just have to give them the right reason to.

Navigation to Other Relevant Parts of Your Website

The new golden rule for a home page ISN’T to keyword stuff and feature everything all on one page. Instead, it’s more helpful to show visitors different areas of your website and make it easy to navigate to that area.

A home page shouldn’t be so cluttered that all different pages and keywords are working against each other. Just think about it, as every page on your website isn’t a landing page or equal in importance, your home page forces you to focus and choose exactly what you want to showcase on one important page. Make a good first impression!

Keyword Focus

Keywords, homepage

The home page is no longer a place to throw around all different keywords. It was common practice to include terms and phrases that you aren’t even optimizing for on that exact page. Instead, focus on the general term/idea and make it a point to brand yourself as a reliable, trustworthy and authoritative business.

Q&A Content

Gone are the days of home pages with blocks and blocks of content. No one wants to sift through a load of content on a home page. This is where you break things up and feature FAQs in bullet points or sections, that could lead to other relevant sections. The point here is to make your content short, sweet and straight to the point. Not only will this appease reader appetite, but it’s exactly what Google Hummingbird is looking for.

CTA and Contact Information

call to action, showcasing website

There are 3 major options when it comes to contact on a home page. You can either
1) Prominently showcase a phone number or email
2) Push visitors to fill out a contact form
3) Both
Either way, it’s most likely the most important thing to add a phone number somewhere that’s big and high up on the page. A real, number with a local area code will help give visitors a sense of location and also send a good signal to Google about your local business.

In many ways, some of these pieces of a home page are self-explanatory and straightforward. There are just a few new concepts that we have to keep in mind, such as scrolling on the home page and big headers. Check out our portfolio and give us a call at (323) 340-4010 for an analysis of your home page.

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.

A Haiku for SEO

Ah, yes. The ancient art of Japanese poetry. When it comes to writing a haiku, the most important numbers are 5-7-5. The poem consists of three lines of 5 syllables, 7 syllables and 5 syllables again. Although a traditional haiku typically focuses on nature and changing seasons, we thought we would mix things up. After all, it is Friday!

Keywords are in place
Blogging and sharing content
Tomorrow is new

Find relevant blogs
Engage readers with comments
Where is my link juice?

Keeping up daily
Search engine algorithm
Google, show me how

Facebook is my friend
Growing a community
Please do not leave me now, friend

Now, it’s your turn. We’d love to hear your haiku about search marketing or whatever topic is on your mind!

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.

Wednesday Webinar Overview: Keyword Research

Midweek already. Yesterday’s webinar with Gord Hotchkiss of Enquiro and Connie Stack of WordStream was about PPC Keyword Research and the B2B Buyer.

My favorite analogy that Gord used was that keyword research is best utilized when you do both quantitative and qualitative research. A quantitative strategy can be compared to looking at your dashboard and monitoring your speed as you drive. A qualitative approach would be more like looking outside your window. So in the end, effective keyword research (and driving) consists of both these techniques!

Connie mentioned a good point in her own experience with WordStream. Instead of just focusing on pushing their products/services, WordStream is also interested in the user experience, such as queries like “frustration with AdWords”. As buyers look for a proper balance in their search, it’s important for sellers to find an equilibrium point in understanding the user experience.

If you’d like to learn more about keyword research and read more about the fascinating eye tracking studies, Gord has a free PDF of his new book available for download on his site.

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.

Coming Up with a Plan for Organic SEO

Do you ever come across the label, “One size fits all”? Not only is it frustrating but most of the time, it doesn’t even hold true! Instead of opting for a generic plan for tackling SEO, why not take the time to see what will work best for you? The biggest problem that many have is not knowing where to start or what efforts are enough to help your success. Although a reputable SEO company can’t guarantee your success, your hard work and consistency will pay off in the end.

Investing in Keyword Research
This is an important starting place. Maybe you want to set aside 5, 10, or even 20 keywords that you’d like to concentrate on. Instead of going for a wide variety of words, it can be beneficial to focus on some top terms if there is not a lot of competition in your field. The opposite holds true if you want to get more aggressive with your efforts. Lisa Barone wrote an easy-to-follow article for beginning your keyword research. With free tools from Google and unlimited online resources, there’s no reason for you NOT to get started today.

Moving Onto SEO Content
Now that you know what keywords you want to optimize, it’s time to focus on SEO content. It may be difficult to deliver a steady stream of relevant content. Many companies find it more efficient to enlist the help of copywriters who are knowledgeable in the field. Whether it is keeping up with industry news, voicing your opinion, or plain FAQ’s, these textual gems will help link your site to the significant keywords that you want to be associated with. Marketing experts can’t stress this enough – content is king.

Let’s Get Technical
Search engine optimization works to help your site gain more visibility. This doesn’t happen out of happenstance and you should familiarize yourself with the more technical aspects of organic SEO. Don’t know the difference between title and meta tags? Forget to add relevant keywords to your headings? Did you know you can even add alt tags to make your pictures more search engine friendly? If you aren’t utilizing these fields, just think of all the potential visibility you’re missing out on!

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.

Making the Decision to use Broad Match

According to Google, about twenty percent of the queries that they receive on a given day, have not been viewed in the last three months. Some can avoid being part of this undesirable group by using broad match to help improve quality score. Quality score is determined by many variables including: historical performance of your account, landing page quality, and historical click-through-rates of your keywords. First, when you use broad match with Google Adwords, it automatically generates a list of relevant variations of your keywords. Here are some things to consider before using broad match for your campaign:

Benefits of using Broad Match

  • Save time. Instead of spending time building lists or by testing via trial and error, broad match covers all different variations of your keywords.
  • Save money. If an ad isn’t doing as well based on a certain variation of a keyword, the broad match system will automatically stop the ads and search for other variations.
  • Utilize data for trends that you might not see otherwise. Using broad match gives you traffic trends and results from trying different variations of keywords.
  • Help attract more web traffic to gain clicks and conversions.

Broad Match isn’t Right for You

  • An ad campaign for a brand conscious company may not want to stray away from their strict control of keywords; this means giving up clicks in order to maintain the brand.
  • If you are on a limited budget and already spending all your funds on your keyword advertising campaign, broad match may not work for you.
  • If rearranging the order of your keywords will cause a different meaning, broad match may bring you untargeted traffic.

Overall, broad match can help you be successful in getting more clicks. When properly managed, it can be cost effective and help you gain consumer insight about your products and services.

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.

One Keyword Per Page

It’s expensive to create and optimize pages for search, so why not try to jam as many keywords onto one page as possible? Unfortunately this scattershot approach won’t increase your ranking, instead only diluting your results. The best number of organic search keywords to target per page is one.

It is important to have one primary focus on the page, one concept that the page is about.
Now of course you can have more than one word on the page, or target two words that mean basically the same thing. For example optimizing the same page for “certified public accountant” and “CPA” makes perfect sense. However, you should resist the temptation to use the same page as the search landing page for “CPA”, “certified public accountant”, “tax accountant”, and “tax services”. Although all of these words are related, you won’t end up with a number one Google result this way.

The bad news is, this means lots of landing pages. Sure it’s more work, but doing something right usually is. The more concepts you try to cram on a page, the more you confuse the search engine, so keep it simple. Just start with pages for your best keywords, and add a few more every week. Over time you will see much better results for the effort.

Not everyone agrees with this strategy, and it is possible to get a number one rank for multiple keywords when they are less competitive, but in a competitive environment, it is important to specialize and be clear with your seo strategy. Keeping your target keywords as close to one as possible will keep you from spreading yourself too thin and losing out on valuable traffic.

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.

One Keyword Versus Multiple Keywords

How many organic search keywords should be targeted per page?

This frequently asked question seems like an easy one to answer—search pages are expensive to create so we should invest in as many keywords as possible per page, right? Wrong. Search engine experts are now telling us that having just one primary focus per page is advisable. It is impossible not to have other words on the page besides the keyword you are trying to optimize, however it is possible to have your page target one specific concept.

What about when you have two words that essentially mean the exact same thing? Landing pages can be shared between two words that have the same basic meaning. Acronyms and initialisms, which are formed using the initial components in a phrase or a name, can share the same page as the full phrase or name that the acronym is abbreviated for.  However, for whatever reason, some people want to target different messages to the people who are searching for the acronym and to the people who are typing the full phrase or name, in which case you could have two different pages.

The reason to target only one search keyword is because you want to get the number one result in Google. Even if you have a number of words or phrases that are related, you will not get the best result with that many targets. The most advisable approach is to think of highly targeted pages with just one goal. Optimize just one concept per page so as not to confuse the search engine and thus lower the page ranking. In doing so, you can include other concepts as long as they fit in with the primary concept.

In order for this to work you must create a number of landing pages. It is a lot of work but simply begin with the best matches for your site and gradually create more.

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.