Kevin Hicks

Kevin Hicks

Kevin is an Internet Marketing Specialist at ROI Web Marketing. He has a strong passion towards helping businesses succeed using a creative and focused approach to Internet marketing. ROI Web Marketing offers web design and monthly marketing services which include Google AdWords pay per click advertising and SEO.

Kevin Hicks on LinkedIn

Sunday, 03 June 2018 12:57

How to Use Facebook To Boost Your SEO

Google has a very complex algorithm (or rules) that operates its search results. Their guidelines have been clear from the beginning of launching their search engine.

Don't try and inappropriately gain rankings with spammy techniques and...

Content is king! 

What's next is how popular your content is.

  • What do other people think of you after reading your content?
  • Are they sharing it or liking it?
  • Do they engage with it?

 

Each month, ROI Web Marketing does an internal strategy meeting for each of our clients on what should be done for them to enhance their SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Google AdWords (Pay-Per-Click Advertising), website maintenance, and overall Internet marketing exposure.

Our clients also ask us what they should be doing next or what they should do to assist us with their marketing.

This has spawned this article on what I feel the future of SEO looks like and what you should be doing now to keep up with how Internet search is evolving.

You can either be ahead of the game or be left in the dust.

Ok, that sounds a little harsh. But I promise this article is a beauty! :)

Google Is All About the User

Google is an excellent company that puts the user experience first and has stuck to this since the begining. When people find relevant information and are happy with what they've found, Google is happy that they are giving people what they want. With all the data and tracking that is available to Google, they are doing a great job of continuing to deliver quality search results for their users.

SEO is definitely an area where you need to take everything into consideration in order to be successful. There are no quick fixes or accelerated ways to the top of Google. It's a process, and you need systems in place and consistency in order to get results from it.

Current SEO Landscape

The current landscape of what's needed for SEO can be summarized into 4 categories:

  1. Keywords & Content
  2. Code & Guidelines
  3. Off-Page Factors
  4. Social & Engagement

1. Keywords & Content

A keyword is a search term input into Google to find relevant websites. Every keyword will give you different results. Every location you are in will give you different results. From a basic standpoint, if you want to be found for specific keywords, you should have those keywords in your website, in your code (appropriately), linked internally on your website, linked from other websites, and so on. But now I'm getting too technical. Quite simply, keywords are important. :)

Content is King!

Content is really what gets indexed in Google and sorted based on suggested keywords you've given Google. Google is so smart that no matter what you give them, they index your content in their own way anyways. Nevertheless, as an SEO Expert, our job is to influence them in appropriate ways according to their guidelines. You don't want to piss Google off, do anything that would get you removed from their listings, or do anything that would hurt your rankings.

More is Better

People ask me how long their pages or posts should be. More is better. 400-600 words for a page or blog post is great, although most of my posts are much longer as you can tell. It depends on how much of a topic you'd like to educate people on and how much resources or time you have to write it.

Writing with purpose to make an impact on your customers will allow you to write much better than writing for the sake of posting for SEO.

Write the content as you would like to say it. Don't worry about keywords until after you've written what you want to say. Then, feel free to go back in and see if there are some more keywords to add into your post (or for technical people, to input into the meta tags and alt tags for the post).

If you aren't able to write content for your website or don't have the resources to do so, having your marketing company create landing pages may help fill this void in some way, although ideally, the content is sharable socially in order to get the maximum effects for SEO.

2. Code & Guidelines

In order to comply with Google's guidelines, you basically need to have a well-coded website, look good on all devices (be mobile-friendly or responsive), and not do anything spammy or black hat that would get you removed from Google search.

I'm not going to go into each of these tasks, but essentially, these are changes to your website structure, code, navigation, security, and speed.

Here are a few common tasks that you may have heard of, and this is not the full list:

  • Meta Tags
  • Alt Tags
  • Security & SSL certificate
  • Structure of your theme and code
  • Website hosting & website speed

3. Off-Page Factors

Google scans the Internet to see what other websites think about yours. They do this by measuring how many links point to yours from relevant websites such as news websites, directories, or even affliiate companies, or referral websites. There is a standard list of the most common directories your company should be listed on - this is no quick fix and often one of the most challenging areas for SEO. This often takes the most time and effort to gain backlinks to your website. 

Here are a few examples of common off-page factors:

  • Link building for common business directories
  • Registering and verifiying your company in Google My Business & Bing Places
  • Having links back from your associations or community groups
  • Google Remarketing & Facebook Retargeting advertisements
  • Online reputation management

4. Social & Engagement

Internet marketing reach has always been important. How many people do you have access to? How many emails are in your database? How many followers? While reach is important, what's becoming more and more important is engagement. Google is giving far more exposure to how social you are - this is directly related to your current SEO and will be more and more related into the future. If you want to be successful with SEO and Internet marketing, you definitely want to consider increasing your Internet marketing reach, being more social, and creating more engagement.

You need quality content to be socially accepted and have your content shared, so you can see the cycle happening here. To keep up with where SEO is going, you need to:

1) write quality content,

2) promote the content through your growing network and create engagement,

3) abide by the guidelines set forth by search engines and coding structures, and

4) build quality, relevant links throughout the Internet.

Lastly, in order to be able to run any successful marketing campaign, you need to set up some form of measuring your success.

5) Google Analytics setup with proper tracking for goals to gauge how well your marketing is performing is extremely important.

 

Systems & Procedures for Your SEO

Ok, now that you realize the importance of good quality content and how that's going to shape your future, this is what I'd suggest you do moving forward to get the most out of your SEO.

#1: Content Marketing Strategy

Consistently releasing new content for your website either via a blog or news-type articles is your top priority. Once you've done that, you can move on to other forms of marketing. Having content on your website and then promoting this content via social and email newsletters will give your company the most efficient Internet marketing you can get.

You can learn more about a Content Marketing Strategy here: https://www.roiwebmarketing.com/6-month-roi/content-marketing-strategy

#2: Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Google AdWords is the top reason companies hire us. We set up and maintain Google Adwords Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising to get you as many leads as possible for the best rate. 

If you aren't able to produce content to support your SEO efforts, it is imperative to continue optimizing and enhancing your PPC campaigns. If you were to look at the traffic to your website, the most relevant and converting traffic should be your paid advertising.

Are you looking for more customers? Contact ROI Web Marketing to get started with an Internet marketing package today. 

Thursday, 26 April 2018 16:03

Top Cat Tours

Okanagan wine tours are exciting. Booking them needs to be easy. With this custom web design for Top Cat Tours, we've helped them showcase their awesome tours and organized their booking system to make it easier for customers to checkout and book their tours easily.

Visit the Website

Sunday, 25 March 2018 16:36

Neil Squire Solutions

Neil Squire is a non-profit in Burnaby BC that we built a new website for and helped them through the process of educating their ideal customers via their website.

This new website has a sleek look and feel that looks great on mobile devices.

Visit the Website

Sunday, 25 March 2018 16:21

Sarah Gallop

Sarah Gallop is an award winning interior design firm. For years their Internet presense was mostly shown on Houzz but not on their website. To stay as leaders in the industry they hired us to build a new custom website that focused more on the images and portfolio of projects they've worked on. 

We created a custom gallery with filtering options that allows the user to filter photos based no size of the projects. This is one of our most customized galleries and works great on mobile and desktop.

Visit the Website

Sunday, 25 March 2018 16:11

Precision Greens

Precision Greens has been the leader in artificial turf for many years. To stay at the top they hired us to build a new custom website that focused more on the images and portfolio of projects they've worked on.

We created a custom gallery and interface that allows the user to easily navigate products and pages based on what their needs are. This is one of our most user friendly websites.

Visit the Website

When hiring any designer or creative contractor for your business, you want to ensure that you spend your money wisely.

This article is about how ROI Web Marketing sourced a designer to create infographics for our business and worked out a process that you can follow to get the most out of your infographics both online and in your offline materials.

Vancouver Graphic Designer

Flora Gordon is a Certified Graphic Designer in Vancouver, BC who we hired to create our infographics that I'm showcasing in this article. A big thank you to her and her team for helping us with this, designing beautiful artwork, sending us the raw files for implementation, rearranging the infographics based on our preferences, and printing them as posters. She even sent us the poster-sized files ready to send to the printers directly.

Flora's details:

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/floragordon/

Strategy for Your Infographics

For some businesses, it's harder to describe their services/products or the benefits of working with them to their ideal customers. A great way to do this is with infographics.

Infographics allow you to visually showcase a lot more information in a fraction of the time. If you are thinking of getting infographics created for your business, ask your designer what they could create for your company. This would require working with a designer who has a consulting background and experience in creating infographics.

Here are some examples of what your infographics can include:

  • Reasons why clients/customers should work with your company
    Why should someone work with you over competitors? If you have a business plan or strategic plan, you can get this information from there. If not, you can do a discovery process with a business consultant or the graphic designer.

  • The products or services you offer
    Visually feature your list of services and/or icons that describe what you do.

  • Your philosophy of your industry or what you believe in about your industry
    Everyone has their way of doing things or their beliefs on how services or products should be perceived. This can be a great way to educate your customers and show how your company is unique.

  • Your procedures and systems
    Bring attention to how working with you works, the value of working with you, and the care and attention to detail you give to produce for your clients.

Online Locations to Include Your Infographics

To get the most out of your infographics, it's best to ensure your designer sends all the right files to you and pieces your infographic together in layers so that you can extract the layers, using specific aspects of them in other marketing you'd like to do online.

Update Your Website

For example, our infographics were designed as posters to be printed and displayed on my office walls. I didn't want to include the whole poster on my website, so I was able to extract the middle graphic and input it directly on our homepage. In fact, there are three infographics on our homepage that replaced text. Now, our website homepage is way more powerful. I was also able to include the infographics on my "About" webpage and "Results" webpage as I felt they were appropriate there too.

You may want to update your blog to tell the world about your newly designed infographics! :) 

If you have a newsletter list, you may want to send out an email proudly announcing the release of your new graphics!

Update Social Media Channels

Next, I'd suggest updating your social media channels with your infographics. You could replace the large banner at the top of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You could also upload them as photos to Instagram and any other social media platform you are running.

Update Your Display Banner Ads

If you've created banner ads for Google Remarketing, you may want to update your banner ads with these new infographics. Also, if the amount of content is less than a certain percentage of text, then you can use these for your Facebook ads as well. At the time of writing this article, the amount of text in your image has to be less than 20%.

Offline Locations to Include Your Infographics

If you really want to maximize your infographics, you can also include them in the proposals you send your potential customers or include them in your printed materials (examples: tradeshow booth, brochures, business cards, pamphlets, etc.)

The Final Products

Once you've completed your infographics and implemented them into your marketing, your brand becomes more powerful and cohesive as your custom infographics help with brand consistency. When people see your print materials, visit your website, or find you on social media, they will recognize your brand more and more. In addition to your logo and brand colors, you now have custom graphics that you can utilize in your marketing moving forward.

Here are a couple photos: one of the posters that I have up in my office now, and the other of our infographics in use in our print material. You can see that the middle infographic has been copied from these posters and used on the homepage of this website. The full posters were also uploaded to Facebook in their own album.

posters 2

proposal infographics for web

Google My Business can be a very powerful marketing tool when used effectively. This article will describe why it's an essential tool for your Internet marketing and how to set it up.

What Is Google My Business?

Google My Business is Google's directory of business locations. When doing a search including a city keyword, search results often include listings from Google My Business' database of companies from that location. Business listings show up when you are doing a search within the same city or that contains a city keyword. Google My Business is an essential part of any Internet marketing strategy because it allows you to display your contact details, business hours, and reviews from happy customers. Customers are often making purchasing decisions after they've visited your website and see what other people think about your company online. 

Claiming Your Business

In order to display your business in Google My Business, you'll need to claim your listing by visiting http://business.google.com and registering your listing. Fill in your business information here and a postcard will be sent in the mail to your busines address. Once you receive the postcard, go back to http://business.google.com and input the code on the postcard. This is how you claim your listing, and this ensures that you are the rightful owner of the business.

If you have a home office and you don't want to display your address online, you can check the box "I deliver goods and services to my customers at their location", then de-select the checkbox "I also serve customers at my business address. (Your address will be hidden from the public if this box isn't checked.)"

Reviews on Google My Business

Online credibility is a huge part of Internet marketing. 

This is the #1 reason to register your Google My Business listing and provides an excellent area for you to showcase valuable feedback from happy customers.

Once set up, it's best to integrate ways to get people to write testimonials about your company online. There are 3 main locations where I suggest business owners populate their reviews online: 1. Google My Business, 2. Facebook, and 3. LinkedIn. Depending on your industry and target audience, one option may be more important than the others. In my opinion, the platform with the most credibility and legitimacy is Google My Business Reviews.

Once you've claimed and verified your Google My Business listing, this will give you access to allow your customers to write reviews. 

Creating Your Review Link

In order to share your listing to get people to review your business, you need to manually create a link that is shareable so that people can write their reviews on your page. Here are the steps to create this review link:

1. Go to the PlaceID Lookup Tool by Google.

2. Enter your business name in the “Enter a location” field at the top of the map.

3. Click your business name in the list that appears.

4. Your Place ID will appear on the map beneath your business name. Add your Place ID to the following URL to create your link: 

  • https://search.google.com/local/writereview?placeid=<place_id>

Using the example above, the URL with the Place ID added would be:

https://search.google.com/local/writereview?placeid=ChIJE4HHtzV1hlQRRvqSqtUuct0ChIJE4HHtzV1hlQRRvqSqtUuct0

gmb review link

You may also want to make it easier for your users to leave a review by shortening the URL (click here to learn more).

Updating Your Information

You are able to add hours of operation and basic contact details, such as a phone number and website link. You'll also be required to add categories to your listing. Categories are limited to what Google provides as relevant categories. Not all business types are listed here, so pick the most appropriate categories for your business. You can also enhance your listing by uploading photos of your location or brand images. The full list of image suggestions are: 360 images taken of your establishment, video, interior, exterior, product, team, and identity photos.

Posting on Google My Business

When your listing is verified, Google allows you to make posts to let people know of updates from your company directly in your Google My Business listing.

Google suggests you post your events, products, and services directly to Google Search and Maps. Making a post allows you to submit timely content to customers when they find your business listing on Google. Google only allows posts to be displayed for 7 days before your post is archived in your posts area.

Learn more about posting on Google My Business from our post "New Google My Business Posts."

Messaging on Google My Business

If you'd like to activate Messaging on your listing, this enables people to send you text messages directly to your phone from Google search. To activate this, click on "Messaging" and go through the steps to verify your phone number.

Linking Google My Business & AdWords

There are two ways that linking Google My Business with your AdWords campaign enhances your advertising.

  1. Google My Business Ads are created for you and displayed within the business listings in Google Maps.
  2. Your address details and phone number are displayed within regular Google Ads.

This is a recommended AdWords optimization technique that should be done once you've verified your Google My Business listing.

Other Google My Business Challenges

Google has done a good job of allowing business owners to register and edit their listings, although there are sometimes duplicate listings or old contact information that make it impossible to re-verify or gain access to your listing. Google does offer phone support for tricky situations such as an old marketing company you can't get a hold of who has ownership of your listing. As of writing this post, Google My Business' support number is 1-844-491-9665. When contacting Google, they do require an AdWords ID for them to provide support. It's always best to contact your Internet marketing provider to help you with this.

Our monthly marketing clients receive support with their Google My Business setup and optimization as part of our marketing service. If you need assistance with this, feel free to contact us to ask how we can help.

 

Tuesday, 12 December 2017 14:20

Content Marketing Strategy

What is a Content Marketing Strategy (CMS)?

Think of this as a business plan for content.

What is your why behind your company? 

What is your target audience?

What is your unique selling proposition?

What is your overall impact you'd like to make with your content when someone reads it?

Our version of Content Marketing Strategy or CMS is a much more simplified version. I do encourage you to take this further, but the purpose of using this simplified version is mostly to keep your content organized, make your marketing more efficient and hold you accountable to make sure your marketing is consistent.

Let’s face it you are a busy small business owner and you may not have the time to keep a fullscale CMS up to date and even develop it in the first place.

In our 6 Month ROI you’ll have the chance to create a simplified version of a CMS.

Download our Simple CMS

We’ve saved our Simple CMS in a Google Sheet.

DOWNLOAD 6-Month ROI - Content Marketing Strategy Spreadsheet

You’ll want to download and make your own by filling in all the area’s that you’d like to use. Then follow along with our procedures below to stay organized.

How to use the CMS

This CMS is designed for 1 blog post per month. You can easily expand on this. Although, don’t over commit to trying to do too much and then not being consistent with it. Consistency is the key. Commit to what you for can do realistically. Start with one blog post a month for this program. If you complete the 6-month program and are successful at writing an article per month then you can upgrade from there.
You can navigate through the CMS by using the bottom tabs within the Google Sheet.

  • Procedures: Shown here is a reminder of what you should be doing with your content to get the most exposure possible. These procedures will be covered in later chapters.
  • Goals & Overall Impact: This is meant for you to read through each time you are about to make a post on your website. This is a quick reminder to stay on brand with your content writing and make sure you are staying focused with what impact you'd like to make with your content.
  • CMS (By Priority): This is where you can input your content based on a priority sequence. I prefer this method over the "By Date" method as sometimes your content can be timely or industry or company news being announced on an as needed basis.
  • CMS (By Date): Same as By Priority mentioned above. Although, this is where you can input by date a more organized version if you are able to plan out each month. Use either By Priority or By Date. 
  • Ideas: This is an optional area for potential future ideas that aren't fully developed yet or to be used an as archive.
  • Promos/Offers: This is an area just like the ideas area where you can input your ideas for future campaigns, promotions or special offers that you'd like to do in the future.

Feel free to customize your CMS as you see fit. 

Content Ideas for Your CMS

In order to write effective content for your blog think about what your customer wants to learn or hear about.
Frequently asked questions, any objection a customer has had in the past about ordering from you can also be a post. The idea here with the content is to peak their interest. The topics should be something your readers want to know or learn about.

For example:

  • Case studies or testimonials
  • Educational posts. Answer common questions.
  • Promotional posts: what’s on special? Any current offers?
  • Feature a product or service: educate your audience by giving more information about a service or product you are offering already that they may not know all the details about.
  • Video posts: video engages audiences and can build trust with your audience. The ease of creating videos is getting easier and easier. It just depends on whether you are a video person ;)
  • Company changes or enhancements: what’s changed recently for you. Tell the world about it starting with a blog post.
  • Something fun or inspirational: keep it positive. Positivity breeds success. By motivating or inspiring your audience you are building trust and creating connection.

More articles on content writing:

 

Procedures & Commitment

Your CMS will help you stay organized with what you can write each month. Have the mindset that this is an evolving document. Think of this document as a location to store those great ideas that pop into your head about a great article you’d like to write. :)
When you have an update you’d like to tell the world about there’s space to add that in or move posts around. Keep it simple and don’t over think it. Remember, marketing is all about being consistent.

 

Tuesday, 12 December 2017 14:20

6-Month ROI - Month 6

Month 6 Tasks Overview

Internet Marketer:

  • Optimize Google AdWords
  • Facebook Retargeting Ads Setup

Your Tasks:

  • Blog post & Send newsletter
  • Facebook Boost Post
  • LinkedIn Pulse
  • Facebook or YouTube Video Post & Promote Post

 More coming soon

Want More Customers?

Maximize ROI With Your Web Marketing

Lead Generation Conversion Specialists

Free Consultation

Testimonials

×

roiwebmarketing email popup