Wondering what SEO can do, but not too technical? The Executive's Guide to SEO describes the components of SEO in a low-tech manner and includes painstaking details and best-practices for the SEO DIY. "Elucidating perspectives on SEO that all executives should know."

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Table of Contents What is SEO? Online Visibility in a Nutshell SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings Link Building 101 The Prom King/Queen Analogy External Links Case Study External Links: A Real-world Example Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market High Value Links Found by Your Target Market Link Bait Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us SEO Services Google Adwords Online Advertising Link Building Services Social Media Services Inbound Marketing Services 1 1 3 3 6 6 11 11 14 14 16 16 17 17 19 21 25 29 29 31 31 32 35 37 39 41
Table of Contents What is SEO  Online Visibility in a Nutshell  SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO  On-page Optimization Bes...
What is SEO? Online Visibility in a Nutshell What is SEO? Online Visibility in a Nutshell Online Visibility through SEO & Inbound Marketing SEO is not trickery. It’s first and foremost speaking to your target market. But it is also learning to speak to a very sophisticated algorithm that wants to serve you up as, truly, one of the best. Each metric they measure – from “likes” to “mentions” to “links” to “growth rate” – defines a new era in marketing that must be aggressively adopted. On-page SEO On-page optimizing provides search engines the clearest view of what pages are all about and how to properly summarize each page in the search results. Achieving a Page-1 Ranking Achieving a Page-1 ranking in a competitive market using highly competitive keywords requires a successful implementation of an Inbound Marketing plan. Inbound marketing is the marketing function that is most concerned with maximizing your online visibility and includes link building and content marketing. It means creating awesome content in many different forms and then gaining visibility for that content through all available online channels. Link building is the term that reflects our understanding of the importance in demonstrating to the search engines that our inbound marketing efforts are achieving a growing online visibility. The proprietary algorithms of Google and Bing measure and give weight based on thousands of metrics which determine the ranking order on anything put into a search box. New metrics arrive and new weights are assigned daily. Google realizes that their success is based on serving up the most correct and relevant results based on someone’s query. They have stated that those algorithmic results should be a real-world reflection and interpretation of excellence in online business. Everything else being equal, they want First-page results to serve up – awesome – all measured by an automatic measuring system that, in many ways, is also creating a level playing field for today’s new e-commerce entrepreneurs. If you already have an awesome site design, provide excellent customer experiences, provide 1
What is SEO  Online Visibility in a Nutshell  What is SEO  Online Visibility in a Nutshell Online Visibility through SEO  ...
What is SEO? Online Visibility in a Nutshell unique and relevant content and showcase excellent products and services, you are off to a great start and ready to begin implementing your Link Building efforts. My posts will attempt to convey the best-practices of SEO and Link Building in a condensed, non-technical way with insights for the executive. 2
What is SEO  Online Visibility in a Nutshell  unique and relevant content and showcase excellent products and services, yo...
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO SEO 101 Generally speaking, Search Engine Optimization is now broken down into three main areas: Content | Link building | Social Media Search engines are placing a much heavier emphasis on the combination and consolidation of these three components. Content Great Content Rules. Why? No authority will link to poor content. Google knows how to differentiate between good content and poor content. People link to unique, high-quality content and sites that consistently offer an excellent customer experience. Google interprets customer experience with customer behavior metrics and uses them as a ranking determinants (% of click-throughs from SERPs, time on site, pages per visit, repeat visits, conversions, etc.). SEO 101: Any page that is indexed into the search engine’s databases is already ranking, albeit possibly not in the top pages of the search engine results page, i.e. SERPs. An article or blog post or press release is a page with its own URL and can be optimized and ranked the same way as any web page. Content involves writing in a way that gives your customers and search engines the clearest picture of what the page is all about. SEO copywriting is creating each page’s unique content to speak to your prospective customer first, but also involves research to find the most relevant keyword(s) that people may search for to find your page. Keyword research is the art and science of selecting keywords that are both relevant to the page and less competitive to increase the likelihood of a higher ranking. It is often the case of selecting a keyword that may offer “some” traffic to your site versus a highly competitive keyword that will offer “no” traffic to your site because you are not yet in a position to compete in the rankings on that keyword. So how do you compete in the rankings on the most competitive keywords? Enter link building. Link Building Everything else being equal, high quantities of high-quality links remains the number one way to 3
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO  SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO SEO 101 Generally speaking, Search Engine Optimization ...
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO move up in the rankings on competitive keywords. Each link to a page is like a vote and the page with the most votes usually wins. The goal is to amass positive citations across the web from high value, industry-related authorities. It’s up to you to find out who they are, nurture them and convince them that your value proposition is worthy of their support. Link-building is a non-stop fight to get to and stay on top. Links should be earned, not bought. Link-building is synonymous with Inbound Marketing. There is a best-practice in Link Building of creating a link building infrastructure that can be separated into four areas: 1. easily-gained links regardless of your target market 2. higher-value links in your target market – These take research, nurturing of relationships and compelling new content. 3. creative link building campaigns using any number of methods that are good enough to attract links automatically (link bait) in your target markets 4. Link opportunities that are gleaned from the competition Each of these will be discussed in future posts. A Link is NOT a Link – How links are valued by search engines Google’s algorithm knows how to place a value on each link on the web. Examples: Low value link: Anchor text “Click here” found on an unrelated site of low authority and trust, low on the page with unrelated surrounding content. High Value Link: Anchor Text “Kayak Personal Floatation Device” pointing directly to your product page optimized for that same keyword from a high authority kayaking industry web site, high on the page and surrounded by related content and few other links. The best links are those that you would consider valuable even if there were no search engines because the link itself would be receiving many clicks and you would be receiving much new traffic. Social Media Search engines continue to improve the relevance of their search results. Since Google’s Panda update, there is mounting evidence to suggest an increasing weight on ranking signals from social 4
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO  move up in the rankings on competitive keywords. Each link to a page is like a vote and ...
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO media sources. Social Media gives friends proof from our peers that something is good. If your friend “liked” it, you trust her judgment and you are more comfortable checking it out. So, social media endorsements like shares, likes, retweets, mentions, and Google +1 likes are virtual votes endorsing something we like. But since these “votes” come from less authoritative sources, they may carry lower weight, but they are still votes and they are being counted. These include: Links in Tweets – the power of the link is determined by Google and Bing depending on the authority of the Twitter member via # followers, authority of relevant followers, # of retweets with that link and the # of relevant lists the user is on. The ratio of followers to followed is a strong signal of authority. Links on Facebook Pages Links on Google+ Google +1’s Giving “new customers” the chance to Google+1, Tweet, “Like” and post news about their new purchase or become a “Brand Ambassador” is an important strategy to consider. The sales confirmation email has the highest “open rate” of all emails. Conclusion Google and Bing realize that their success is based on serving up the most correct and relevant results based on any query. They have stated that those algorithmic results should be a real-world reflection and interpretation of excellence in online business. Everything else being equal, they want First-page results to serve up – awesome – all measured by an automatic measuring algorithm that, in many ways, is also creating a level playing field for today’s new e-commerce entrepreneurs. 5
SEO 101 The Three Pillars of SEO  media sources. Social Media gives friends proof from our peers that something is good. I...
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization SEO Best Practices for On-page Optimization SEO best practices to improve the SERP (search engine results page) rankings is a combination of two main factors: on-page optimization and successful inbound marketing. On-page optimization is only a first, albeit mandatory, step. The only time when on-page optimization alone can result in a page-one ranking is when very uncommon terms relevant to the page content are used to optimize the page. (See Bear Poop on Mars post) On highly competitive search terms, on-page optimization is not what gets the page to show up on page-one of the free (organic) search results. On-page optimization gives the search engines the clearest understanding of each page and, properly executed, the best chance to rank on one primary and additional secondary keywords. The primary keyword must show up in the page’s URL, Title, Content, Meta Title and Meta Description at a minimum. It also helps to include it in any alt tags that define images on the page. When competitors abound and your web visibility is low, you must look creatively to find the lowest competitive keywords that remain relevant to your page to have the best chance of a page-one ranking, even to the detriment of less traffic. In many cases, it is a reality of receiving less traffic 6
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization  On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization...
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization using less competitive keywords versus no traffic on the most competitive keywords. There are circumstances when highly authoritative domains, they themselves savvy in search engine optimization, will populate Page-one of the most competitive (and lucrative) keywords and make it virtually impossible for other companies to compete on those keywords. An example is the legal industry. Authoritative sites, like lawyer.com, findlaw, nolo.com, legalmatch.com, and lexisnexis occupy the first page on most location-specific and practice-area search terms making it extremely difficult for small law practices to achieve a page-one ranking. This forces them to either pay the fee to be included in those directories or pay the cost per click required to put their ad on that page. The cure sometimes is to create many different pages relevant to your business optimizing each page on a different keyword. (By the way, that’s a benefit of blog posts. Each blog post is a page.) So, if you are not yet able to rank on competitive keywords with high average monthly search volume, say 1,000, hypothetically you could have 100 pages optimized on 100 very low competitive keywords each having a search volume of 10 per month to give you the chance for the same amount of traffic. The “snippet” is the presentation of your search result. Remember that a Page-one ranking puts your snippet in the SERPs along with (typically) nine others. Now is your chance to compete for and “win the click!” How you design the snippet will earn more click-throughs and potentially higher rankings. (Tip: Google keeps track of how many clicks your snippet wins and if the visit to your site results in a bounce back to the SERP for a better choice.) The most important pieces of the snippet are the Meta Title (the top line, 70 characters max.), the page URL (2nd line) and the Meta Description (3rd and 4th lines, 156 characters max.) Each should contain the primary keyword for the page and will become bolded if they match to user’s search term to increase their relevancy. Example of On-page Optimization – Before and After Below are three examples of product pages that were re-optimized on new researched keywords and how those keywords were used in the page’s URL, meta title, meta description and in the new page content (product description). This process was completed on over 2,500 pages over a six month period and has resulted to date in over 765 first-page rankings. This can be a helpful example for companies that re-sell manufacturers products and have made the mistake of using the manufacturer’s Product Name as their primary keyword without asking themselves if it’s a term people are going to search on. In the first example, are more people going to search on Headwaters Mesh Vest or on a term such as fishing vest? On-page Optimization Template #1 7
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization  using less competitive keywords versus no traffic on the mos...
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization Old URL Key: headwaters-mesh-vest.html Product Name: Headwaters Mesh Vest Brand Name: Simms Who Worked on It?: SEP Old Description: A never-go-fishing-without-it essential for your next warm-weather angling excursion, Simms’ Headwaters Mesh Vest boasts 19 intuitively structured pockets that can be stocked full of everything you need on the water—tools, keys, media player, and maps to your favorite backcountry hideouts. The mesh construction allows the vest to breathe, while the padded rib-knit collar feels great against your neck and gives you all-day comfort. A Durable Water Repellent (DWR) finish turns a midsummer shower into an unnoticeable inconvenience. Keyword to Target (Local Monthly Searches): “fishing vest” 6,600 Other Potential Keywords (Local Monthly Searches): “mens fishing vest” 22 Suggested New Product Name: Fishing Vest | Headwaters Mesh Vest New Meta Title: Fishing Vest by Simms | DJBENNETT New Meta Description: Simms’ Headwaters Fishing Vest boasts 19 intuitively structured pockets that can be stocked full of everything you need on the water. Mesh. Zoom-into photo. New Description: A never-go-fishing-without-it essential for your next warm-weather angling excursion, Simms’ Headwaters Fishing Vest boasts 19 intuitively structured pockets that can be stocked full of everything you need on the water—tools, keys, media player, and maps to your favorite backcountry hideouts. The mesh construction allows the vest to breathe, while the padded rib-knit collar feels great against your neck and gives you all-day comfort. A Durable Water Repellent (DWR) finish turns a midsummer shower into an unnoticeable inconvenience. New URL Key: /fishing-vest.html On-page Optimization Template #2 Old URL Key: headwaters-stockingfoot.html Product Name: Headwaters Stockingfoot Brand Name: Simms Who Worked on It?: SEP Old Description: Delivering first-class functionality at an unmatched value, the Headwaters Stockingfoot waders are engineered to perform when you need them most—whether that means going thigh-deep in Montana or navigating a fjord in Iceland, all in pursuit of a great catch. They’re made of waterproof three-layer Gore-Tex fabric to enhance maneuverability and keep exterior moisture at bay, while still allowing internal water vapor and perspiration to escape. The reinforced leg panels and innovative front-leg seam construction make them ridiculously durable and irritation-free. The adjustable shock cord cinch at the top puts the waders on lockdown, blocking out the cold and hoarding the heat you need to stay comfortable—no matter how icy the waters get. Keyword to Target (Local Monthly Searches): 8
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization  Old URL Key  headwaters-mesh-vest.html Product Name  Headwat...
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization Other Potential Keywords (Local Monthly Searches): “stockingfoot” 1,600 Suggested New Product Name: Stockingfoot | Headwaters Stockingfoot New Meta Title: Stockingfoot by Simms | DJBENNETT New Meta Description: The Headwaters Stockingfoot waders perform when you need them, whether that means going thigh-deep in Montana or navigating a fjord in Iceland. Waterproof. New Description: Delivering first-class functionality at an unmatched value, the Headwaters Stockingfoot waders are engineered to perform when you need them most—whether that means going thigh-deep in Montana or navigating a fjord in Iceland, all in pursuit of a great catch. They’re made of waterproof three-layer Gore-Tex fabric to enhance maneuverability and keep exterior moisture at bay, while still allowing internal water vapor and perspiration to escape. The reinforced leg panels and innovative front-leg seam construction make them ridiculously durable and irritation-free. The adjustable shock cord cinch at the top puts the waders on lockdown, blocking out the cold and hoarding the heat you need to stay comfortable—no matter how icy the waters get. New URL Key: /Stockingfoot.html On-page Optimization Template #3 Old URL Key: morada-long-sleeve-shirt.html Product Name: Morada Long Sleeve Shirt Brand Name: Simms Who Worked on It?: SEP Old Description: This shirt was built to keep up with your go-where-the-fish-are spirit. It is lightweight and easy to pack, and no matter what you put it through, it stays fresh and clean thanks to its water- and stain-resistant Teflon finish. The single chest pocket is roomy enough to store your fly box, off-shoulder seams eliminate irritation and enhance mobility, and built-in UPF 30 protection ensures that the sun won’t drive you inside before you’ve hauled in the trophy catch of the day. Keyword to Target (Local Monthly Searches): “fly fishing shirt” 260 Other Potential Keywords (Local Monthly Searches): “simms fishing shirt” 28 “simms fishing” Medium 4,400 “simms fishing apparel” 12 Suggested New Product Name: Fly Fishing Shirt | Morada Long Sleeve Shirt New Meta Title: Fly Fishing Shirt by Simms | DJBENNETT New Meta Description: This fly fishing shirt was built to keep up with your go-where-the-fish-are spirit. It’s lightweight and easy to pack, built-in UPF 30 keeps you on the river. New Description: This fly fishing shirt was built to keep up with your go-where-the-fish-are spirit. Part of the Simms’ fishing apparel line-up, it is lightweight and easy to pack. And no matter what you put it through, it stays fresh and clean thanks to its water- and stain-resistant Teflon finish. The single chest pocket is roomy enough to store your fly box, off-shoulder seams eliminate irritation and enhance mobility, and built-in UPF 30 protection ensures that the sun won’t drive you inside before you’ve hauled in the trophy catch of the day. New URL Key: /Fly-Fishing-Shirt.html 9
On-page Optimization Best Practices for On-page Optimization  Other Potential Keywords  Local Monthly Searches      stocki...
Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings Bear Poop on Mars | How to Increase Page Rank To understand how to increase page rank in organic (free) search results on competitive keywords, there are two pieces of the puzzle that must be clearly understood by Google’s algorithm: On-page Optimization and External Links. On-page Optimization gives Google and Bing the clearest understanding of what is on each page. If you have no competition and the content on one of your pages discusses, “bear poop on Mars,” or something just as obscure, and the page has been crawled and indexed into the search engine’s database, if someone typed “bear poop on Mars” into the search query box, that page would most assuredly appear on Page-one of the search engine results page (SERP). If you were lucky enough to be the first to discover “bear poop on Mars,” packaged it and demand for the gem soared overnight, life would be good. Try it! Do a Google search on “bear poop on mars.” Hopefully, you will soon see this post! Bear poop on Mars So, you found it, right? Bear Poop on Mars has a #1 page ranking. Why? Because the on-page optimization for this blog post (which is the same as a page) told Google that the content found here is relevant to Bear Poop on Mars, which is the first step. The keyword was found in the page title, the Meta description and within the content in a natural way. Secondly, there are no competitors trying to optimize a page on that keyword. I remember a story about a new song by Madonna that referred to “yellow eye shadow.” The next day, searches for “yellow eye shadow” went through the roof. No one at the time sold it, but success belonged to those companies agile enough to create a page optimized on that keyword. (By the way, in SEO lingo, a keyword can be one or more words. In fact, with Google’s recent algorithm update called Hummingbird, long questions can now more easily be considered keywords. “What should I wear to a party on a yacht?” for example.) 11
Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings  Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keyword...
Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings When competition enters the picture, SEO becomes a bit more complicated. When your business requires traffic based on more competitive keywords, such as “SEO Consultant” or “financial planning,” on-page optimization becomes like a pair of running shoes — required to protect your feet, but far from the reason you won the race. So let’s say you are in a highly competitive industry. Each page of your website is optimized fully with compelling content, great design, and you’ve researched and placed unique and relevant keywords naturally within that content. Your web team has gone behind the scenes to insure that those keywords are also present in the page’s meta title, meta description, URL and in the image alt tags that describe any image on the page. Your selected keywords have been chosen wisely away from the most sought after and competitive keywords in your market. Perhaps using “SEO contractor,” for example, would help to rank that page higher in the SERPs. The number of monthly searches on “SEO contractor” might be far less than the more ideal “SEO Consultant,” but in a competitive industry, it is many times the case of “less versus NONE.” If you are a new company and if the keyword “SEO in CT” (that gets say 10 searches a month) is the only keyword that will bring you to Page-one, use it! The most important piece of the On-page optimization is the content itself. Google measures everything and can differentiate between well-written content and poorly-written content even to a degree of distinguishing between grade school writing levels. This has created a boon for the SEO copywriting industry. Your page must be matched perfectly to the chosen keyword or people will abandon the page almost immediately. These “bounces,” are measured and used as a ranking determinant within the algorithm. If your hard work manages to get one of your pages to be ranked on Page-one, and you “win the click” (remember you are competing at that point with 8 to 10 other choices), no one, including Google, wants to see a bounce. It’s the kiss of death. It tells Google (who measures everything) that either they were wrong for placing you on Page-one, that your page was not inline with that keyword, or the experience was not compelling enough for that searcher to stay. But, on the other hand, if Google sees that they did stay, that they spent much time on that page, that they viewed many other pages, perhaps returning many times to that page and ultimately conducted a transaction or a purchase, now that Page-one ranking gets a star, perhaps climbs higher and certainly makes it more difficult to be dethroned in the future by a competitor. Okay, so now imagine the most competitive brands in the most competitive industry all trying to get to Page-one using the most competitive, highly searched keywords on their fully-optimized pages. Enter Inbound Marketing – the art and science behind generating visibility on the web – the metrics of which are used by the search engines to determine some very powerful and lucrative rankings. The most important metric is the number of high-value external links that point back to your page. Next post – Link Building 101. 12
Bear Poop on Mars Using Lower Competitive Keywords to Increase Rankings  When competition enters the picture, SEO becomes ...
Link Building 101 The Prom King/Queen Analogy Link Building 101 The Prom King/Queen Analogy Link Building 101 The Prom SEO Analogy Let’s face it, on every search query made every second, search engines must pick a Prom King/Queen winner, the top #1 ranking URL on page one of the search results. How do real world prom kings/queens get chosen? Popularity (number of friends), member of authoritative clubs (football, cheer-leading), visibility (senior class president, yearbook staff), image/good looks (design), reputation (compelling content), etc. A Page 6 ranking on any keyword means that there are over 50 competitors in front of you on that keyword (10 results per page). There is no realistic traffic that a Page 6 ranking will produce. If you have five pages on your domain, or 25,000 pages, each optimized correctly with compelling, unique content on a primary keyword that is relevant to the content, to be successful as an e-commerce company each of these pages must find their way to Page 1. How? Winning the Prom award for every competitive keyword that attracts your target market. (Do you have/need a page optimized on every keyword that is searched for by your target market? Another time and post.) Developing a Corporate SEO Culture Around Link-Building Developing a corporate SEO culture surrounding Link Building is one of the most important steps that can be taken if greater online visibility and higher rankings on competitive keywords is your goal. Everyone in the company should be fully aware of this importance and keep a constant vigilance for link building opportunities during their daily activities. As a group, your inbound marketing team should strive to have a constant stream of ideas feeding into your link-building campaign strategy. For e-commerce, Link Building (I prefer Link Earning) has replaced traditional outbound marketing methodologies (print and video advertising) as the most important process in the marketing function. Cleverly devised link-building campaigns can provide both branding and link-building opportunities. What new content will be so compelling to authorities (who speak to your target market) that they will want to showcase it on their site/blog? So, link building is an ongoing activity that requires new and excellent content and discovery of new ways to find influential and authoritative sites that want to link to it. (The competition may be able to 14
Link Building 101 The Prom King Queen Analogy  Link Building 101 The Prom King Queen Analogy Link Building 101 The Prom SE...
Link Building 101 The Prom King/Queen Analogy help. More on that later.) Those who execute aggressively will win the Prom Award and achieve higher rankings. Persistence and investments in resources will achieve a high ROI. 15
Link Building 101 The Prom King Queen Analogy  help. More on that later.  Those who execute aggressively will win the Prom...
External Links Case Study External Links: A Real-world Example External Links Case Study External Links: A Real-world Example A Real-world Competitive Comparison of External Links One of my clients currently has 41 external links pointing back to their domain. They sell very high-end sporting apparel and sports gear in 20 sports. One of their product categories is equestrian apparel. On the keyword “equestrian apparel,” they are ranked on Page 6 of the SERPs (search engine results page). The category page is extremely relevant to the keyword “equestrian apparel,” and has been optimized on that keyword in all the correct on-page SEO places, but it is not yet ranking on Page 1. The companies currently in the top 4 rankings (#1-4) on Page 1 for this keyword are: www.kerrits.com with 1,606 external links www.smartpakequine.com with 41,724 external links www.equestriancollections.com with 8,391 external links www.ariat.com with 39,994 external links The main reason these companies are in the Top 4 spots for this keyword is because of the number of high-quality external links they have throughout the web that point back to their domain. Notice that Kerrits.com, ranked numero uno, has relatively fewer external links. Their #1 ranking is most likely due to the fact that they have excellent content and many high-quality links coming from many highly authoritative domains such as the New York Times. Rule #1: Content Rules: No high-authority site will link to poor content. So, in this case (and many others out there), what should this company do to put this particular page on Page one? They need an immediate design and implementation of a custom inbound marketing plan that will result in large quantities of high value links pointing back to this page from authoritative sites (bloggers, media, equestrian sites, etc) preferably (but in the emergency catch-up mode… not only) where the target market hangs out. This blog will outline the current best-practices in link-building and provide actionable steps for acquiring high-quality external links. 16
External Links Case Study External Links  A Real-world Example  External Links Case Study External Links  A Real-world Exa...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market Link Building 101 4 Elements of a Link Building Plan One of my e-commerce clients has approximately 2500 individual product pages and 100 category pages, each optimized correctly on one primary keyword with additional secondary keywords sprinkled in naturally. Each keyword is highly relevant to the content of the page and has a known number of average monthly searches and competitive level. To maximize success and profit as an e-commerce company, each of their 2600 pages must find its way to Page 1 of Google’s, Bing’s and Yahoo’s search results. If you’re interested, here’s a link to the client, DJBennett.com. You can assume each of the 2,600 pages has used all the best-practices of on-page optimization, discussed in my last post. The site also has excellent site design, little duplicate content, excellent site navigation, well-written, compelling and unique content, fast page-load times and very good customer experience metrics like minimal bounces from SERPs, good time-on-page numbers and high conversions. The site gets excellent grades in all the tracked on-page metrics with the exception of one: the primary keyword choices used on each page offered very little leeway in finding less competitive keywords that could potentially rank the page higher, albeit with less volume keywords. Lower competitive “long-tail” keywords (yellow ruffled tennis skort, for example) were used whenever possible, but due mostly to the editorial requirements of this luxury brand, most pages are relegated to competitive keywords that describe exactly what the product is — a “women’s rain jacket with hood”, for example, which is highly competitive according to Google’s Keyword Planner. In this scenario, to successfully compete in the SERPs with longer-standing, higher-authority, 17
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market  Four Elements of a Custom Li...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market higher-visibility competitors on these highly competitive keywords requires confirmable visibility on the web in the form of links, aka inbound marketing, content marketing, link-building game plan. When on-page optimization is equal among top competitors, the count of external links coming from high-authority and relevant sites, bloggers, media, social media, etc. is the most important ranking determinant in the algorithms to move organic rankings higher. (Of course, you can advertise on Google and Bing and if your pay-per-click bids are high enough, you can be listed on Page-one. Google Shopping is another way to do it.) 4 Elements of a Link-Building Infrastructure There is a best-practice in Link Building of creating a customized link-building infrastructure that can be separated into four areas: 1. easily gained links regardless of target market 2. higher-value links directed to your target market – These take research, nurturing of relationships and compelling new content. 3. creative link-building campaigns using any number of methods that are good enough to attract links automatically ( aka, Link Bait) 4. Link opportunities that are gleaned from the competition Today, I will discuss easily gained links regardless of the target market and provide more detail in future posts on the others. Easily gained links regardless of target market These links are readily available to those who take the time to create free profiles at any number of directories, lists, social networking sites, etc. Blanketing this somewhat exhaustive list, while keeping a watchful eye out for approachable link prospects, i.e. authorities who can help direct your brand into your target market, would be a good first step. A quick search at knowem.com will indicate where your brand is not profiled. My client was not profiled in approximately 95% of the 500+ sites that make up these categories. A checklist of sites where you should claim your brand profile, at a minimum, is: Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Crunchbase, Google Profile, Quora, About.me, Scribd, SlideShare, Delicious, Trunk.ly, Stack Exchange, Google Local Business, Yelp, Urbanspoon, Yellow Pages, CitySearch and TripAdvisor. If applicable, additional profiles can be created on recmnd.me, Kred Story, Foursquare, TrustCloud, Behance, Smarterer and Github. 18
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market  higher-visibility competitor...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market The lowest hanging fruit many times will be the manufacturers of the products you sell. They should be contacted and sent a prepared package of HTML including your logo, short description and keyword-loaded anchor text to make it easy for them to post your link on their site. (The anchor text should include the primary keyword of the brand page on your site that shows products of that company.) Company directory submissions like HotFrog and Manta usually provide external links. Next up: How to Create Higher-Value Links Directed To Your Target Market 98XJH9JZ2ECN High Value Links Found by Your Target Market High Value Links Found by Your Target Market In my last post entitled 4 Elements of a Link-Building Infrastructure, I mentioned there are best-practices in creating a customized link-building campaign infrastructure that can be separated into four areas: 1. 2. 3. 4. easily gained links regardless of target market high value links directed to your target market Link Bait – creative link-building campaigns that attract links automatically Link opportunities that are gleaned from the competition Today I offer some tips on how to gain high value links that can be seen by your target audience. To target your link-building campaign specifically toward your target market(s) requires research to identify the top influencers and authorities in your industry or product categories. Rather than setting out blindly, it is important to determine who you want links from. In the case of my client, the target market is buyers of luxury sports apparel and luxury sports gear for 20 sports, so creating a prospect list from the following would be a good place to start: Top bloggers in each sport category (tennis, golf, running, etc.) Top bloggers related to sports gear and sports apparel products Top authority websites for each sport, sports gear and sports apparel Top luxury bloggers, media and non-competitive sites Top reporters and media sites covering your industry and product/service categories 19
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Easily Gained Links Regardless of Target Market  The lowest hanging fruit man...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan High Value Links Found by Your Target Market Maximizing other resources such as customers, site visitors, network contacts, prospective vendors, tangential industries, etc. Keep in mind that the most valuable links are links created by the linking site’s publisher because of an emotional reaction – she saw something of value that she wanted to make available to her web traffic. In most cases, this will not be product information, but unique, relevant and valuable content that she knows her readers will enjoy. (Tune-in for an exhaustive list of ideas next time.) As usual, creating relationships is the key. It’s not about what you know, it’s about who you know. Taking the time to do research, initiating contact, nurturing relationships and offering compelling new content is the process for acquiring high value links from these authorities. Researching high value link prospects is not difficult. It can be done routinely in-house by subscribing to RSS feeds and alerts based on keywords such as (in my client’s case) “luxury blogs,” “cycling forum,” “looking for guest bloggers” (by category), etc. This alone can identify dozens of high-authority prospects to contact. The key is to take the time to do the research to identify topically related authorities rather than launching right into it. AllTop is a blog directory that can find hundreds of top blogs in any category. Approaching the contact should be direct and straight forward. Most effectively, it’s done by a company employee, not a third-party service. Offer your value proposition and examples of the compelling content this is consistent with your brand that may resonate with his/her subscribers. Remember the goal should be to get links pointing to individual pages using anchor text on the link-from page that matches your page’s primary keyword. When external links are most effective Maximizing the Link juice coming to you from external links is the key. Without diving into the technical details behind how link juice is allocated, greater link juice is derived by having links on pages with the following attributes: Pages that have content relevant to your site Pages that have a high PageRank (Here’s a link that can check PageRank for any page on the web.) Pages that contain quality content Pages that appear high in organic search engine results page, i.e. SERPs Pages that have user-generated content Pages that have relatively few outbound links Pages that are popular with social media audiences, i.e. they are mentioned often in social media (A great tool that tracks mentions) Pages that have your keyword-optimized anchor text that matches the primary targeted 20
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan High Value Links Found by Your Target Market  Maximizing other resources such...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan High Value Links Found by Your Target Market keyword on the page it points to When external links to your site are least effective Paid links Pages that have “no-followed” the link to your site Pages with irrelevant or poor content Pages that have a lot of links Pages that are not indexed by the search engines Links obtained swapping links. When you link to someone’s site in return for them linking to your site, it cancels the impact. Links from un-ranked sites with little or no content Next up will be a post on the 3rd piece of the link-building infrastructure, creating Link Bait – campaigns that house your link that are so great that they can attract links automatically. Link Bait Creating Link Bait Creative Link Building Campaigns That Attract Links Automatically within your Target Market 21
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan High Value Links Found by Your Target Market  keyword on the page it points t...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait 3rd in a series on building a customized link-building infrastructure In my last post entitled 4 Elements of a Link-Building Infrastructure, I mentioned there are best-practices in creating a customized link-building infrastructure that can be separated into four areas: Easily gained links regardless of target market High-value links directed to your target market Link Bait – creative link-building campaigns that attract links automatically Link opportunities that are gleaned from the competition Today I offer some tips on how to gain high-value links via campaigns – that house your link – that can attract links (and clicks) automatically. Link bait is the process of creating content that is so compelling, unique, entertaining and/or relevant that people will want to link to it and share it without being asked. The best links are those you would consider valuable even if there were no search engines because the link itself would be receiving many clicks and you would be receiving much new traffic. Your best creative minds should have regular meetings to discuss and brainstorm link-baiting ideas. While brainstorming remember there are never any bad ideas! The truest brainstorming allows ideas without worrying about how to create the content. Ask yourself – what are good concept ideas on a subject that will be compelling to our target market? As you’ll see below there are dozens and dozens of concept areas that can produce excellent content containing your link. Please let me know other ideas that have worked… It is important to know that the content found in these types of campaigns are typically not product related. It can be memorable, sexy, unique, humorous or educational, but link bait first and foremost needs to strike a chord within your target market. Link Bait can take the form of a blog post, an image, an article, a compendium or any number of additional forms such as: (My examples will of course stay on the theme of my luxury athletic gear client.) Top Ten lists 22
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait  3rd in a series on building a customized link-building infrastruct...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait Top 10 Best Runs in the World Top 10 Sporting Luxury Vacations Guides What makes the highest quality performance tennis attire? The Best Multi-sport Adventure Vacations How to Find Adventure Vacations doing the Sports you Love? Infographics Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present complex information quickly and clearly. Infographics can be easily submitted to infographic directories or blogs. Example: CoolInfographics.com. See examples of infographics here: http://vizualarchive.com/ An example of a great infographic: http://bit.ly/roW0oy Sponsorships unique-multisport events luxury golf outings equestrian events concours d’élégance, etc. Awards An annual athletic award in each sport to the athlete who gives back the most. Allow nominations. Surveys A unique survey, the results of which would make an excellent news article, such as – Cast your vote for our Top 10 Luxury Fitness Adventures in the World Partnerships With the right business partner whom you trust, creating cooperative marketing campaigns can produce win-win benefits. A partnership with the right high-end travel company, for example, my client could sponsor a special list of luxury adventure trips. Travelers could receive discounts on adventure attire or other incentives. Remember the Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer Edition that came with a not-so-fine Eddie Bauer bag? 23
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait  Top 10 Best Runs in the World Top 10 Sporting Luxury Vacations Gui...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait How to’s and tutorials Humorous Videos Checklists Photo Contests External Contests: If there’s a relevant blogging contest taking place, reach out to the blogger running it and ask you can give a product or service to the winner. They’re likely to give a link on the contest page if you ask. Live or Interactive (something) – Example: Live sporting stats page of the Tour de France: http://bit.ly/ABNvdU Info-animations – ultra slow motion of Tiger Wood’s golf swing with chalkboard tips appearing throughout the swing Drawings – Idea: Key muscle groups per sport. Example of a drawing that got 15,000 links: http://bit.ly/o957FX Games – Holiday Ideas: Find “DJ!” Discover the location of DJ within your site, be one of the first 50 to click on her and receive a free (whatever) or a 30% immediate discount or a two-for-one… Create reviews Top 10 resources in your industry. Then send each one an Award Badge to post on their site “Outstanding Company Award” that points back to the review on your site. Cartoons Event Coverage Interviews Expose’s Glossary of terms White papers 24
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait  How to   s and tutorials Humorous Videos Checklists Photo Contests...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait Quizzes/Tests Timely/Seasonal content The best Link Bait can result in high-valued Links coming from authoritative news outlets, authoritative bloggers, authoritative industry sites, etc. Encourage Link Bait to spread virally by posting unique versions aggressively within your network of social media sites, blogs, etc. Your campaigns should have a page of their own on your site so when people forward it, it arrives with your URL. With a non-embedded YouTube video, for example, the link takes them to YouTube. Even though it can still have a major branding benefit, nine times out of ten you’d probably rather point the traffic back to your site. Next up: Link opportunities that are gleaned from your competition 98XJH9JZ2ECN Related articles 4 Elements of a Link-Building Infrastructure (theexecutiveseo.com) Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition Link Building Opportunities Gleaned From a Competitor Analysis Hello again. In previous posts, I’ve discussed that there are four areas in which to focus to create 25
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Bait  Quizzes Tests Timely Seasonal content The best Link Bait can resul...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition a link building infrastructure in order to increase web visibility (regardless of search engines) and higher search engine rankings on competitive keywords: 1. Easily gained links regardless of target market 2. Higher-value links in your target market – These take research, nurturing of relationships and compelling new content. 3. Creative link building campaigns using any number of methods that can attract links automatically (link bait). 4. Link opportunities that are gleaned from a competitor analysis Today, I’ll complete the series (certainly not the discussion) with a post on the fourth area: Link opportunities gleaned from the competition. First off, what defines your competition from an SEO perspective? Any site/page that ranks higher than you do on your optimal keywords? Any page that ranks higher, even on your wisely chosen lower-competitive keywords? Any domain ranking higher than you do on any keyword theme found in your content? Any page that “wins the click” (due to their compelling snippet) on the same search engine results page (SERPs) even though they may be behind you? I’d have to say all of the above. Since SERPs are created anew each time a search term is entered and mainly identify “pages,” not “domains,” it may take some time to identify the top domains that are taking traffic away for your online business. Okay, let’s assume that you have identified say 50 competitors that are consistently ahead of you in the rankings, especially on the highly competitive keywords you’d rather be using. You have to ask: what are they doing right? After all, your content is superb, your site design is perfect, your customer experience is excellent, your on-page optimization is correct and in place and your site metrics are respectable. Against established brands, they themselves savvy in search engine optimization, high quantities of high-quality links remain the number one way to overtake their rankings on competitive keywords. So, you may ask, how are they creating all of those external links – those votes of confidence, those shares, likes and +1s that contain their link and those, potentially, thousands of positive citations across the web from high value, industry-related authorities? Your marketing team needs to know what the competition is always up to. You can learn much by going past a simple list of links to gather link data such as anchor text and link authorities. Tools like Moz’s Open Site Explorer, Majestic SEO, Blekko (currently in beta) and Ahrefs can help create 26
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition  a link building infrastructu...
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition a competitor analysis by reverse engineering the tactics that produced valuable links for your competitors and provide much information such as: What pages on their site are attracting the most links? What link partnerships do they have with media, bloggers, authority sites, etc? Who they are getting their links from? Are they buying links or all white hat? (Buying links will hurt, not help.) What content is on their site? What types of content do they use? Video, articles, blogs, Images, news, etc. How do they use their content to attract links? Are they collecting and displaying user-generated content? How? Are their links the result of PR campaigns or are they aggressively reaching out to potential linkers by contacting them directly? Are they using incentive based links such as an awards program? Are they SEO savvy? Signs they may not be: “Read more” or “Click here” anchor text or content buried many levels deep – poor breadcrumbing. Regardless, less savvy competitors may be a threat if they have a strong brand. The goal is to identify all of your competitors in each product or service area and begin to do a better job than they do building (earning) quality links. If you execute correctly, you will begin to improve your rankings because the search engines will see more traffic, see improved metrics having to do with page rank, trust, and authority. Remember that once this train starts rolling, you will also become more likely to improve your rankings on those highly competitive keywords that currently you may not have a chance to rank for. Using a tool like SEOmoz’s Open Site Explorer allows you to plug-in your competitors and export their external links to a spreadsheet to get their links in one place. Then you can sort them by various link metrics to find the best link-building opportunities to pursue. Tips: Remember that links are not usually permanent. Competitors can, and will, catch up and sometimes overtake. Link building is a non-stop fight to get to and stay on top. You can discover the most powerful sites that link to your competitors as measured by PageRank or MozRank, but remember that you must beat the competitor’s site, not just have 10% of their links. Extracting data from your competitor’s backlinks can help you decide on the best link building strategies and create content based on what has worked for your competitors. Competitor Analysis Tools – there are expensive link analysis tools on the market for enterprise size companies like Covario, BrightEdge and Conductor in the $10,000 per month range. But for smaller companies, most people take advantage of the free and low-cost tools like Moz, Google Analytics and Google/Bing Webmaster Tools. 27
Four Elements of a Custom Link Building Plan Link Opportunities Gleaned from the Competition  a competitor analysis by rev...
SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period Six-month SEO case study Here’s an actual SEO case study based on a client’s SEO implementation after a period of eight-months of on-page optimization (3/22/2013 – 12/26/2013). It compares key metrics from two 30-day periods using Google Analytics – Organic Channel only. Metrics from 3/22/13 – 4/22/13 (starting date of improvements) are compared to the same metrics from 11/26/13 – 12/26/13. Keep in mind that these SEO results reflect a real-world example after about eight months of on page optimization only. No link building effort had yet been implemented and the number of external links is very low. No new pages were added to the website, but changes were made to about 2,200 product and category pages. Keywords for each page were researched to find new more relevant keywords and efforts were made, when possible, to choose less competitive keywords with lower monthly search volumes in order to increase the likelihood of a first-page ranking. Each chosen keyword was written into the page content (product description) once or twice without sounding stuffed. New page URLs were created to include each new keyword and the keyword was put in the Meta Title, Meta Description and Alt Text for each page. Actual SEO Results Eight-month comparison of organic traffic (Google, Bing, Yahoo) only 3/22/13 – 4/22/13 (one-month prior to start) 29
SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period  SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over ...
SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period Organic Site Visitors: 2,820 Number of pages ranked on Page-One of Google SERPS 42 Keywords with >5 visits during this time period 64 Organic Revenue $5,941 11/26/13 – 12/2613 Organic Site Visitors: 12,640 Number of pages ranked on Page-One of Google SERPS 765 Keywords with >5 visits during this time period 156 Organic Revenue $21,560 SEO Results Using the Rule of “Less Versus None” This SEO case study is an example of what can be accomplished if you follow the best practices of on page optimization and, as importantly, if you follow the rule of “less versus none.” The rule of less versus none applies to those situations when your competition is high and your domain and page authority is lower than that of your competition. (Domain and page authority can be measured using Open Site Explorer or the MozBar, Moz’s free SEO toolbar. ) The rule of less versus none means that optimizing each page with a less popular keyword may help put the page on page-one of the SERPs, but bring you less traffic than the more ideal highly competitive keyword which, if used, may bring you no traffic because you have yet earned the authority required to rank on page-one with that keyword. A major component of authority is the number of external links pointing to your domain/page from high-authority sites. See post on Link Building. 30
SEO Case Study Before and After Organic Results Over 8-Month Period  Organic Site Visitors  2,820 Number of pages ranked o...
The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us Why hire us? The Truth About Search Engine Optimization (SEO) At The Executive SEO Agency, it’s a never ending battle for the Truth about Search Engine Optimization-SEO, Online Advertising, Social Media, and how to gain web visibility to grow your business. We pride ourselves on our transparency and our desire to enlighten our clients every step of the way in an effort to earn and keep your business. Our Philosophy: Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. Similar to a “teaching hospital,” we consider ourselves as a “teaching agency.” We are a great fit for companies that are as interested in learning about what we do as they are in optimizing their online visibility. Our small, boutique-style, agency offers best-practices and individualized services in the following areas: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Online Advertising (SEM) Link Building Social Media Visibility Inbound Marketing For the past 16 years, Scott Pierson has developed and fine-tuned the truth about search engine optimization and SEM tactics around: 31
The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us  The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us  Why hire us  The Truth About Search Engine Optimizatio...
The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us SEO Site Assessments SEM : Pay-Per-Click aka PPC Advertising Content Marketing Strategies Building Custom Inbound Marketing Plans Link Building Strategies (I prefer the phrase Link Earning) SEO Strategies for brand and target market On-Page Optimization White Hat SEO aka ethical SEO SEO Copywriting Keyword Research SEO Competitive Analysis SEO and SEM Analytics SEO Training and Coaching CAN SPAM Compliant Email Marketing Services Social Media Optimization Services and Social Networking Optimization Local and Google Places Optimization Client Testimonials Dawn B. CEO DJ Bennett Doug M. Executive Director Emagazine.com Schuyler R. CIO Free Talk Live Connect with Scott on: LinkedIn Google+ Twitter Subscribe to The Executive SEO blog Or tell us what’s on your mind… SEO Services 32
The Executive SEO Agency Hire Us  SEO Site Assessments SEM   Pay-Per-Click aka PPC Advertising Content Marketing Strategie...

We built a great website, but Scott made it become visible. He taught us why our content and on-page optimization was missing the boat and how our search result "snippets" could be re-written to "win the click" and increase our organic click-through rates. Scott taught us how we could leverage our Adwords spend into organic ranking improvements. The six-month results speak for themdelves. Our traffic has doubled but our traffic from the organic search results has increased nine-fold. From his analytical research into our competition, keywords and link-building, to his strategic thinking abilities, Scott has given us a blueprint we will follow for our continued success. 

Scott is on the forefront of search engine optimization and online advertising. It is clear that his knowledge goes beyond the basic understanding of how to gain online visibility. He clearly understands and can communicate in layman terms on a level that I have not found in too many experts. He is easy to work with and is a strong role model to others in our company that are just learning. Scott's effort was above what was contractually obligated and the results spoke for themselves. We are lucky to have had Scott as a resource for our company.

Scott is a great trainer and advisor on SEO. After assessing our SEO situation, Scott brought our entire company together for a days training in our corporate office in Cheve Chase, MD. Using examples fom our website, he explained clearly why very few of our 2,500 product pages were ranking on page-one and specifically what we had to do to remedy the problem. The results were amazing! In a six month period, our organic traffic has grown from 2,820 visitors per month to over 22,000 and from 42 web pages with a page-one rank to over 765. Scott has corrected our course and I recommend him without reservation.

The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services About Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Services Things to know about SEO Services before you hire anyone Truth #1: Regardless of how much anyone knows about Search Engine Optimization (SEO), sometimes first page rankings are impossible to attain in the short term. While there are creative ways to maximize your organic (free) search presence immediately, factors like your industry, competition, brand and the competitiveness of the most popular keywords people use to find you will force the process of achieving first-page organic rankings deeper into the realms of Inbound Marketing and Link Building. Even when each page on your site is fully optimized, Google and Bing will rely on metrics that help them understand your popularity (external links and social presence), user satisfaction levels and authority. In a highly competitive SEO landscape, when everything else is equal among competitors, these are the factors that create page-one rankings. We base our approach upon this reality. Before we start, you can expect a realistic SEO assessment followed by our honesty about what our work can bring you and exactly what it will 33
The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services  About Search Engine Optimization  SEO  Services  Things to know about SEO Services ...
The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services take to achieve your goals. In some cases, this may take the form of a customized inbound marketing plan with the option for you to share in some of its implementation. Truth #2: SEO is never over. We don’t expect you to hire us for life. SEO results are not usually permanent. Competitors can, and will, catch up and sometimes overtake. Very few brands can honestly say they have enough unique visitors, enough visibility, enough authority or enough profit. So, done right, SEO is a non-stop fight to get to and stay on top. With this in mind, we build into our service an aspect of education that will build your internal expertise to carry-on the best-practices we demonstrate during our engagement with you. What are SEO Services? Based on an initial assessment, SEO services may include any of the following: SEO Site Assessment External Link Assessment On-Page Optimization SEM : Pay-Per-Click aka PPC Advertising Content Marketing Strategies Building Custom Inbound Marketing Plans Link Building Strategies (I prefer the phrase Link Earning) SEO Strategies for brand and target market White Hat SEO aka ethical SEO SEO Copywriting Keyword Research SEO Competitive Analysis SEO and SEM Analytics SEO Training and Coaching CAN SPAM Compliant Email Marketing Services Social Media Optimization Services and Social Networking Optimization Local and Google Places Optimization What SEO results can you expect? SEO results can vary depending on many factors such as the level of keyword research previously done for each of your pages, the age and authority of your competition using the same keywords and your willingness to choose keywords that will bring LESS traffic versus NO traffic (See blog post here on The Rule of Less Versus None.) Let’s say that during the initial site assessment it is discovered that you have done everything right 34
The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services  take to achieve your goals. In some cases, this may take the form of a customized i...
The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services with your on-page optimization, but your pages are still not ranking on page-one of the SERPS (search engine results pages). It may be time to begin an aggressive Link Building implementation. Here is an example of what one e-commerce website accomplished with our SEO services in a period of eight-months of on-page optimization. The company website was about one-year old and the competition was extreme. These results reflect the work done to research less competitive keywords and incorporate those keywords into the page content in a natural way on each of about 2,000 product and category pages during the eight month period. Actual SEO Results Eight-month comparison of organic-only traffic (Google, Bing, Yahoo) only 3/22/13 – 4/22/13 (metrics that existed one-month prior to start) Organic Site Visitors: 2,820 Number of pages ranked on Page-One of Google SERPS 42 Keywords with >5 visits during this time period 64 Organic Revenue $5,941 11/26/13 – 12/2613 Organic Site Visitors: 12,640 Number of pages ranked on Page-One of Google SERPS 765 Keywords with >5 visits during this time period 156 Organic Revenue $21,560 So you can see that there was a dramatic increase in traffic and revenue based on on-page optimization only. The next SEO phase for this client will begin the process of gaining external links from authoritative sites by the creation of new, unique and relevant content written exclusively for the interest of their target markets. Contact us today! free initial consultation free SEO analysis of your website Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what’s on your mind… 35
The Executive SEO Agency SEO Services  with your on-page optimization, but your pages are still not ranking on page-one of...
The Executive SEO Agency Google Adwords Online Advertising Google Adwords Online Advertising Truth #1: Many companies have lost considerable money doing pay-per-click advertising because they don’t know how to effectively measure ROI using tools like Google’s Conversion Tracking and Conversion Optimizer to establish a maximum Cost per Acquisition that is below the known profit margins. While SEO strives to gain traffic to your site without any cost, at least for the clicks, Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is the abundance of advertising opportunities that can, with even more precision than SEO, result in a profit — and not an unspecific or fuzzy profit, but a perfectly clear positive ROI achieved by managing the actual costs of the advertising spend needed to generate a conversion (sale, sign-up, download, etc.) to be less than the profit/value made from that conversion. Truth #2: Using contextual targeting, the Google Display Network can automatically put you text, image or video ads on websites where your target market likes to hangout. Google Adwords 36
The Executive SEO Agency Google Adwords Online Advertising  Google Adwords Online Advertising  Truth  1  Many companies ha...
The Executive SEO Agency Google Adwords Online Advertising As a Certified Google Adwords Professional, Scott Pierson has the knowledge, experience and creativity to mastermind your online advertising in conjunction with your SEO efforts – a combination that most specialists feel is a best practice. The more common text ads seen on the top and right sides of Google and Bing search results is a tactic that can put you on page-one tomorrow, but there are many other exciting opportunities today occurring in other interactive mediums! For example, people are watching and checking their mobile phones 126 times a day! YouTube is now the second largest search engine on the planet. Millions each day are seeking entertainment and education on YouTube providing advertising possibilities that are virtually endless. The clicks and conversions are beginning to move into a new realm of knowing who, why and on what device someone viewed your ad while giving you perfect clarity into your investment’s return. We will guide you through the most relevant advertising opportunities for text, image and video ads, how to use contextual advertising to put you squarely in front of your target market, how to create great ads and how to determine which one’s are performing profitably. Contact us today! free initial consultation free SEO analysis of your website Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what’s on your mind… Link Building Services 37
The Executive SEO Agency Google Adwords Online Advertising  As a Certified Google Adwords Professional, Scott Pierson has ...
The Executive SEO Agency Link Building Services Truth #1: Against established brands, they themselves savvy in search engine optimization, high quantities of high quality external links remain the number one way to increase rankings on competitive keywords. Truth #2: Not all links are created equal. Truth #3: Links should be earned, not bought. Achieving a Page-1 ranking in a competitive market using highly competitive keywords requires a successful implementation of a LinkBuilding plan. Inbound marketing is the umbrella term that includes link building and content marketing. It means gaining visibility through all available online channels. Regardless of the search engines, external links are positive citations of your company and can increase your traffic all by themselves. The reality is that Link building is also a term that reflects your understanding of the importance in demonstrating to search engines that your inbound marketing efforts are achieving a growing visibility. The proprietary algorithms of Google and Bing measure and give weight based on thousands of metrics which determine the ranking order on anything put into a search box. New metrics arrive and new weights are assigned daily. Search engines, Google being the 800 pound gorilla, realize that their success is based on serving up the most correct and relevant results based on someone’s query. They have stated that those algorithmic results should be a real-world reflection and interpretation of excellence in online 38
The Executive SEO Agency Link Building Services  Truth  1  Against established brands, they themselves savvy in search eng...
The Executive SEO Agency Link Building Services business. Everything else being equal, they want first-page results to serve up – awesome – all measured by an automatic measuring system that, in many ways, is also creating a level playing field for today’s new e-commerce entrepreneurs. Unless you have a very obscure set of keywords that are relevant to your pages, (see Bear Poop on Mars post), external links pointing to your site from authoritative sources is what can differentiate a Page-1 ranking from a Page-5 ranking on competitive keywords. We can help you create a link building infrastructure separated into four areas critical in maximizing trust, relevance, brand recognition and rankings: Easily-gained links regardless of target market Higher-value links in your target market – These take research, nurturing of relationships and compelling new content. Creative link building campaigns using any number of methods that are so compelling that they attract links automatically (link bait) in your target market. Link opportunities that are gleaned from the competition Contact us today for a free link building services consultation! free initial consultation free SEO analysis of your website Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what’s on your mind… Social Media Services Social Media Services 39
The Executive SEO Agency Link Building Services  business. Everything else being equal, they want first-page results to se...
The Executive SEO Agency Social Media Services The Benefits of Social Media: If you could place free roadside billboard ads on an unlimited number of roads used by your target market and magically increase the traffic on those roads, would you do it? Truth: This is the essence of the benefits of maximizing your social visibility on Social Media, Social News and Tagging Sites, Vertical Social Media Sites, Directories, Profiles, Blogging and Forums. Claiming your initial brand profile at key social media sites like these is a great brand-building and traffic building tactic. Our approach will help you set up your target-market-specific social media infrastructure and help you become recognized as an active and trusted contributor. After all, you must put something in to receive anything back. Our social media services will help you create a social media content strategy and a daily schedule to bring unique viewpoints, authentic content and valuable sharing posts that will resonate with your target market. Do you know how your brand is doing across the widest array of social media sites including sites that pertain to: Blogging, Bookmarketing, Business, Community, Entertainment, Fitness, Health, Luxury, News, Photo, Sports, Travel and Video. Try using the free tool at www.knowem.com Since Google’s Panda update, there is mounting evidence to suggest an increasing weight on ranking signals from social media sources. It has been verified that Google make 2-3 changes in its algorithm every day. So change is constant. Social Media gives friends proof from our peers that something is good. If your friend “liked” it, you trust her judgment and you are more comfortable checking it out. So, social media endorsements like shares, likes, retweets, mentions, and +1s are 40
The Executive SEO Agency Social Media Services  The Benefits of Social Media  If you could place free roadside billboard a...
The Executive SEO Agency Social Media Services virtual votes of confidence recommending the things we like. But since these “votes” come from less authoritative sources, they may carry lower weight, but they are still votes and becoming a more and more important piece of the algorithm. These include: Links in Tweets – the power of the link is determined by Google and Bing depending on the authority of the Twitter member via # followers, authority of relevant followers, # of retweets with that link and the # of relevant lists the user is on. The ratio of followers to followed is a strong signal of authority. Links on Facebook Pages Links on Google+ Profiles and Company Pages Google +1’s Our social media services are customizable. From the creation of a social blueprint or to-do list for you to execute, to creating a social media infrastructure and generating hundreds of profiles for you, to offering unique content and sharing suggestions, to managing the entire creative and posting process, we can tailor a plan suitable to your situation. Contact us today! free initial consultation free social media analysis Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what’s on your mind… Inbound Marketing Services Inbound Marketing Services 41
The Executive SEO Agency Social Media Services  virtual votes of confidence recommending the things we like. But since the...
The Executive SEO Agency Inbound Marketing Services Inbound marketing focuses on creating amazing content. Also referred to as Content Marketing, it is the process of creating content specifically suited for your target market. Properly executed the content is so well aligned that it pulls your audience toward your brand. Over time it converts prospects into long-term customers and even advocates. Inbound marketing uses blogging, keyword marketing, SEO, SEM and social media to attract potential customers and continues the engagement process focusing on the customer experience long after any sale using email, event marketing and social communications. The tools and services used to implement an inbound marketing plan can be adjusted to fit your company based on its size and budget. At the lowest end lies the “free side of web visibility.” At the high end lies a fairly complex and expensive mixture of enterprise-level Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and high-end Email Service Provider (ESP) integration that tracks and measures the steps a customer goes through when considering, purchasing, using, and maintaining loyalty to a product or service. Our combined services will provide many of the same high-end benefits, but without the high-end costs. The beauty of the web is that so much can be accomplished at the lower-end of the visibility spectrum. Contact us today! free initial consultation free SEO analysis of your website 42
The Executive SEO Agency Inbound Marketing Services  Inbound marketing focuses on creating amazing content. Also referred ...
The Executive SEO Agency Inbound Marketing Services Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what’s on your mind… 43 Powered by TCPDF (www.tcpdf.org)
The Executive SEO Agency Inbound Marketing Services  Call Scott directly at 203-952-6442. Or let us know what   s on your ...

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