Why should I outsource SEO?

Pensive-Monkey

Many small businesses are reluctant to set up a website. When they are finally convinced of the benefits, they reluctantly setup a website and get it up and running. They expect it to generate business for them and unfortunately it does very little in most cases. They wonder why?

Well, it is just like if you open a shop in the traditional world. Unless you promote your shop, you won’t have much traffic and without customer traffic, there won’t be much business. In the traditional world, in the brick and mortar world, you promote in multiple ways. You can distribute flyers, you can place advertisements in newspapers, radio, television etc. In the online world, you can do all of those too. Now if you don’t have the funds to invest heavily in pay per click ads, then people revert to SEO, which is organic search so that you appear favorably in searches on Google or Bing or in other indexes and directories.

A small business owner may say – okay, let me learn SEO and they spend months learning SEO, and in most cases, it is an exercise in frustration. The more you learn, the more you realize you don’t know much, as it is a very vast subject. Many simply give up.
The question is, should you learn it yourself or should you outsource it? Just because it is free or close to free to learn, does not mean you should spend months learning it. You could learn how to sew and stitch your shirt – but you don’t. Why? Because you can better use your time and let someone else stitch it better for you. Whatever you are selling, I am sure if your customer put in enough time, they can do it themselves. But they don’t and outsource it to you. Why? Because they think you can do it better and more cost effectively.

Even if you put in the weeks and months and become very good at it, do you have better use for that time? If for an hour of work you can earn $30, can you get your SEO work get outsourced for $25/hour. If the answer is yes, then outsource it.

All that time you spend on learning SEO and SMM (Social Media Management), if that can be better spent / invested to either generate more sales, or reduce costs or create new products, then outsourcing makes better sense.

In my case, I’m very good at SEO and that has been my strength for many years. But I don’t do our SEO/ SMM. I need to pay more attention to developing and growing our business rather than SEO. So what do I do? I let our employees do our SEO. I guide them and I am there if they need help but I don’t do the work. I have better use of my time. I also sit on the planning meetings for our client’s SEO campaigns but I don’t do the work. I can also wash my shirt and change oil in my car but I outsource it because I have better use for that time.

Think about changing the mindset, You can learn to do anything, yes that is correct, but that time that you spend in learning SEO, for example, can that be better spent, can that be better invested, can you generate more revenue? If the answer is yes then you must outsource. For a more detailed article including a case study, visit http://bit.ly/outsource-seo3

Good Luck!

 

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Social Media as a Main Marketing Tool

Social-Media-as-a-Main-marketing-tool2The changes in Google’s search algorithms have put paid ads on top of the search results right in the middle of the page. No matter how hard you try at ranking higher in organic searches for your business and popular keywords, the top spots will be taken by those with big bucks to advertise. Whilst this brings more revenue for Google, it also drives businesses away to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms. Naturally, businesses have started including social media in their strategy as it drives traffic to their website and boosts sales without paying the piper at Google.

Social media platforms now have an unprecedented number of users. Marketers have seen their potential for growing business and they have started using it to get more customers and make more sales. Here is how social media works for you:

  • Social media drives targeted traffic to your website whilst boosting your website’s SEO at the same time.
  • It is the most convenient tool to build a relationship with clients and business contacts. Building a relationship with customers has never been easier.
  • It allows you to react promptly to any problem.
  • Improves brand loyalty.
  • It is easy to stay up to date with what your competitors are doing.
  • Find customers you were unaware existed and grow your audience.
  • Having a profile or brand page is free. You only need to pay for well targeted ads and improved visibility.
  • Unbeatable ROI.
  • Social equals mobile. In a day and age when everyone frequently browses the internet on their smartphones, being present there means your brand reaches all those mobile users.
  • Bigger reach of any campaign or product promotion.

Representing your brand on available social channels will guarantee your audience is aware of your existence. Interact with your audience, create catchy campaigns and enjoy the benefits of improved sales.
The most obvious platforms to use are Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, but Google+, Pinterest and Snapchat should not be neglected.
For a more detailed article including a case study, visit http://bit.ly/social-media-marketing-1

 

Why should I outsource content development

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We have already established that your website needs a blog with good quality content in previous articles. In addition, you need content for your social posts, social blogs, Pinterest, Instagram, facebook, Linkedin, G+, Twitter etc. Yes it takes time but well worth it. Well what if you do not have the time or necessary skills to write this content yourself? That is when outsourcing content development becomes an excellent idea.

There are many benefits to outsourcing you content development. By outsourcing your content creation you will receive:

  • Keyword rich content to improve your website’s ranking
  • Reduced costs
  • Higher level of efficiency
  • Receive content on time
  • More time to focus on key aspects of business
  • Persuasive and well researched writing
  • Save money by not hiring full time employees and providing them with benefits and health insurance
  • Run practice writing sessions to check the quality of the content
  • Take advantage of the knowledge and expertise of others
  • A wider range of content with a unique, fresh perspective
  • Get more done in less time
  • Broader skill set resulting in quality pieces of writing.

The two biggest takeaways are that good quality content helps establish the credibility of your business and improves your SEO and search engine ranking.

On the other hand, you, the outsourcing company should give clear instructions to your writers and make any remarks while the writing is still in a draft version.

Communication is key, so make sure your writers are aware of the content’s objective write in line with your brand and the story you want to tell.

For additional reading on similar topics, visit http://bit.ly/outsource-content1

We hope this article was helpful. Good luck!

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

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Men are notoriously difficult to buy for, or at least that’s the excuse women use when they but a ton of things for themselves but nothing for the men in their lives. It’s partially true because men don’t use too many personal care items and they generally are happy with 3 to 4 pair of shoes. Socks and ties – well you can’t buy them socks and ties every year. And they only need one hammer and screw driver set. Most aren’t even good with tools any more so scrap this age old gift.

What to do?

KhyberBazaar has put together a small list of unique items that are practical, not expensive and very unlikely that your father would have the same or similar items already.

When you spread your horizon, ideas abound but we are all busy with our daily lives and unaware of ideas from other cultures. I won’t tease you any more. Here is the link to their article http://bit.ly/unique-gifts-men5

Good Luck!

How much should a website cost you?

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Thinking of building a website for your company? Wondering how much it is going to cost you? You ask a few people and they all give you a different answer. You are confused. That is to be expected as there is no simple answer. A website can cost you from $500 to $50,000. Let’s get you educated a little so you can talk to a web developer armed with a little better knowledge.
The number 1 thing you need to know is: it really depends on what your site is about, what it does and how it looks. Mobile friendly websites with custom, modern design cost a lot more than the average blog. In this article, we’ll give you an overall idea of the cost, but by all means, we encourage you to double check the cost depending on the site you want with a web developer.
Here are main thing you need to include in your budget:
⦁ Domain – not expensive
⦁ Hosting – not expensive
⦁ Design – could be expensive
⦁ Development/ website builder and maintenance – could be expensive
⦁ Content & SEO – it’s a long term activity. Keep it separate from web development.
Again, we would like to stress that the cost of building a website boils down to four points:

Which of these resources do you have at your disposal? Lacking one or two does not mean that you cannot have a website. You can either compensate one for the other or in the case of design/tech skills you can outsource the website building to professionals.
You can choose to buy a domain and learn how to design and setup the website yourself, which will probably take quite some time. In most cases, it is much more cost effective to get help from professionals.
You can either build parts of it by yourself, do it all on your own or have developers do all the work. Developers can build the website from scratch without using any particular website building software. Or, you create the site on WordPress but you need to know your way around the platform if you are to customize it to your needs and preferences. Alternately, website builders such as Wix, Squarespace and Weebly are drag and drop builders so you can assemble a website with minimal technical knowledge. It will still require time though.
There is a much more detailed article on this subject at http://bit.ly/how-much-website1
Good Luck!

Planning for a newsletter – Best practices

Newsletter-3

Newsletter are reports, issued periodically by businesses or organizations and used to present information and news to people with an interest in the organization or the subject matter. Above all, a newsletter is a chance to attract the attention of your audience and would ideally lead to a certain action. In order to achieve the desired purpose of the newsletter, it must be planned and executed in a way that will bring about the desired results.

Before we begin, we need to stress the importance of defining the objective of your newsletter. Do you want the newsletter to send traffic to your website or do you want to disseminate information and build goodwill. Is it only going to inform about new products or services or new events and situations or a continuous discourse on subjects of interest.
Newsletter are not just for businesses. Religious and government bodies, non-profits and charities, user groups etc. all have newsletters.
To send newsletters via mail, you will need your members postal address. If by email, their email address. In both cases, you will need to develop a database and make it easy for people to sign up. You may use an auto-responder like GetResponse, Aweber or MailChimp if using email.

First and foremost, you must know who your audience is and understand their needs. Keep in mind that they are on more than one mailing list, so send only relevant content that might interest them. A good practice is to include other relevant materials alongside your own for added value. Readers will certainly appreciate your effort, especially if it proves to be a good source of information.
Second, your newsletter must tell a story, whether that is a product or service does not matter. People in your audience must be able to relate to the story or else the desired action will not come about. If you are unable to achieve this yourself, you could always hire a content writer to help in your efforts. Communicate with your writers, talk to them, help them understand your objectives and the story you want to tell and let them write it for you.

Third, choose the way you will deliver the content carefully. If your audience is mostly using mobile devices, then your newsletter must be mobile friendly as well. Be especially mindful of images and graphics as they take extra time to load.
Now that you have got all the basics down, create a calendar to help you plan the best time to send certain content. Be mindful of holidays and events in your area so you can keep it all as relevant as possible.

Next comes the subject line. This is very significant for the success of your newsletter. If the subject line does not pull people in, the rest of your content will not stand a chance to serve its purpose. Use between 25 and 75 characters.
The Call to Action should be written in a clear way that is easy to understand and be related to your aim. For example:

  • “Tell us what you think”
  • “Watch the video”
  • “Find out more”
  • “Click to Order”

Etc.

Define when and how many times you are going to send it so you can also know when to have the draft content ready. Go through it one more time before sending it on its way.
Last but not least, you need to measure the effectiveness of your newsletter. Monitor the number of subscribers, the click rate, forwards, new sign ups etc. To avoid any legal issues, always link to your privacy policy and a way for people to unsubscribe.

In conclusion, before sending out your first newsletter, the majority of your time will be spent in the planning stage. Then the second one will be a matter of finding the content, address any glitches from the first run etc. It is hard work, but worth the effort. That’s why so many organizations continue to send out newsletters.

If you need help with content creation, content promotion or handling the mechanics of emailed newsletters, contact us at http://interloperinc.com . You’ll be glad you did!

Tips for increasing Tweet Engagement

tweet-engagement

When it comes to social media, Twitter is a platform that should not be neglected, especially considering the number of users (320 million monthly active users) i.e. potential customers for your business. Small businesses use it to get some much needed traction, big brands to strengthen their relationship with customers and promote new products. The success of their content is measured by their Tweet engagement.
Before we go any further, here are two parameters you need to know:

  • The number of characters is limited to 140. Any tweet you want to publish must fit within that limit. Some argue that for optimal results, tweets shouldn’t be more than 110 characters long (hashtags included!). URL shorteners are your best friends whenever you want to include links.
  • The ultimate goal is Twitter engagement meaning that people favorite, retweet, respond to your tweets or click to any links/content you post. Ideally, this will bring more traffic to your website.

Many brands spend long hours crafting clever post ideas but they go down the News Feed in the blink of an eye if there is no engagement. Do not get discouraged. Keep working at it and as you refine your skills, your results will improve.
Here are a few tips on improving tweet engagement:

  • Get visual – photos, videos and infographics get much more engagement than simple text tweets.
  • Research and use appropriate hashtags.
  • Post relevant content and keep new followers engaged as they tend to unfollow if you do not grab their attention quickly.
  • Offer customer service.

Tools such as Twitter Analytics are of immense help. Twitter Analytics shows data about impressions of a 28 day period, engagement rate, content that got the most engagement, the type of engagement and much more.

For additional tips on improving tweet engagement, visit the detailed report at http://bit.ly/tweet-engagement1