Online Media Makes Your Marketing Dollars Count

Lets face facts – no matter which way we look at it, the internet is taking over. It is now the primary resource for customers to find products and services in almost any industry. Although there may still be some need for traditional forms of marketing, in most cases if you don’t have an effective online presence you are massively limiting your business to just a handful of customers in comparison to what you could be doing.

The marketing industry at the moment is in a constant state of time restraint. When you compare the time it takes to organise your print campaigns, proof copy and actually go to print, you could have published your campaign online and seen immediate and measured results. I concede that utilizing print can be useful, but will be far more effective when your campaign includes a push towards your website, not to mention the costs of advertising in print, in comparison to the substantial savings in advertising online.

Marketing dollars being spent in online media and search optimization are miniscule in comparison to traditional media methods. In many cases, where companies include an online marketing component to their budgets, but have not yet reduced their existing marketing budgets, the yield from their online campaigns far outweigh those of traditional methods, making the acquisition of clients using online methods a far more financially intelligent decision.

Our new generations of consumers want their information, products and services fast and on demand. The fact is that when they look for information on anything, whether it is for purchase, product or service, there is a 90% chance that they will turn to an online method to find what they want and most of these consumers won’t go past the first page before selecting a site to visit. It is an uncomfortable truth for some, but a truth none the less that if you are not competing for a front page position on Google, you are not doing enough to compete in today’s marketing environment.

Why Content is King!

If you are a business owner, you or your team may have heard of the phrase ‘GP is King’ (GP standing for Gross Profit). While for many traditional retail businesses this is true, in the world of online marketing that term in most cases has been superseded by another: Content is King.

Why is Good Content Important?

There are a number of reasons why quality content is vital to the success of any website. Whilst access to quality information is important to the end user, it is also equally important in the search engine optimisation process of your website. Let’s take a closer look at why these two factors can contribute to the success of your online marketing strategy.

End User Experience

Without good content, a website is simply a bunch of words on an Internet page. Although the website may be able to generate a nominal amount of traffic, it may serve very little purpose to the business unless the content is captivating. By displaying quality content, the end user needs to feel comfortable to either make an online purchase or to contact the business. In other words, content builds credibility and trustworthiness.

How Quality Content Can Have a Positive Effect on Your Rankings

Many websites were affected by the recent updates of Google Algorithms. These recent changes were designed to target sites containing minimal or poor quality content.

If used effectively, quality content can easily affect the performance of your website on the Internet. The main reason why quality content is necessary simply comes back to Google’s principle philosophy, which is ‘To create a perfect search engine’. More specifically, Google’s goal is to understand what the end user needs, and to provide them with what they want. This again falls back to the theory that Content is King.

By regularly updating your website, you are demonstrating to Google that you are striving to align yourself with their ultimate goal. The more often you update your site, the more often Google re-analyses your site (caches), which often results with positive movement in rankings. If you are updating your site in the form of adding new pages such as articles or blog posts you are also expanding your website in depth. Again, if this is done using original and quality content, this is again something that you can be rewarded for by the search engines.

Finally, writing quality content in the forms of articles, blogs or press releases helps your business to expand its online presence.  These pieces of content can be submitted to various article directories, news sites and so on. Additionally they can be set up as a marketing pieces bringing in additional traffic. For example, if you are reading this article on our website, you may find that another version of this article has been posted somewhere else on the Internet. Or if you are reading this article on someone else’s blog or website, you will most likely find that it links back to my site, that is unless someone has stolen my content for their own gain… if that is you, please at least acknowledge me as the writer by providing me with a link ;).

Although content is not the only factor when it comes to the optimisation process, it certainly heavily contributes towards the credibility factor of your website. This credibility is not only vital from an optimisation perspective, it is also something that will contribute towards the conversion of your sites visitors to customers. Taking that into consideration, how do you think visitors and Google view your website in it’s current state?


What is SEO?

With the inception of the Internet the world is definitely smaller than it was 15 years ago. You can Skype (video conference) with friends on the other side of the world, hear about the latest breaking news as it happens and learn a lot more about a certain subject where you used to browse through an encyclopedia Britannica to find the answers.

The popularity of the internet has also paved a new horizon for businesses. Gone are the days when you’d grab your Yellow Pages and scour through, looking for the right business to fulfil your needs. So what is the new medium of today? Unless you’ve been living under a rock you’d understand it’s … Search Engines.

Please Note – In this article I am going to discuss Google as they are the main search engine that everyone wants to rank in right now (with an 86% global share).

Search Engine Optimisation

Search Engine Optimisation (also known as SEO), is a method that uses a series of different factors to achieve a high rank in the Search Engines. When you adhere to these different factors you can build credibility and influence a websites position in the Search Engines.

These factors are broken into 2 key areas:

  • Foundation factors
  • Evolving Factors

Let’s explore these 2 factors and gain a better understanding on how each one works.

Foundation Factors

These are a series of key factors that remain the same and are a major component of how your site ranks. If you’ve never actually heard about SEO till now than this may seem a little confusing, but I’ll try to explain it in a way that makes sense.

  • On Page – These are adjustments you can make to your physical website that change the way Google sees it. When you make these changes Google can hone down to a particular topic or keyword you’re trying get them to notice. In other words, it let’s Google know what category your site fits into. If you look around you can find out many of these factors, but I’ll share them anyway. These main factors are – The Title, Description, Keyword Tags (this is very, very minor), Use of headlines, body text, bolded text, number of words on the page, domain name and descriptive Url’s. As I mentioned earlier, when you align all of these the right way you are effectively letting Google know what your site is about.
  • Off Page – Once you complete the On Page factors it’s generally time to start working on Off Page. If the On Page factors tell Google what your site is about, the Off Page factors determine how credible your site is in comparison to the millions of other sites on your topic. This credibility factor is usually determined via a series of links (or endorsements) back to your site. The more reliable these links determines (in combination with your On Page factors) where your website should rank.

Evolving Factors

These factors (as the name would suggest) keep changing are determined by search engines and where / what they consider to be the best way to rank a site.

Over a decade ago in order to rank a site well on the search engines you would jam a whole lot of keywords on the bottom of your webpage and keyword tag and that would push you up to the top. As you would expect, people took advantage of this and started keyword stuffing their sites to rank well. In reaction to this the major search engines at the time changed and they began to dismiss (and sometimes penalised sites) when they keyword stuffed. This has evolved where Google now uses algorithms (a series of Formulas) to determine how a site should rank.

As of right now a few of the evolving factors Google are using to rank a website include:

  • Social Media – links back from Facebook and twitter. These are called mentions
  • Geographical Location of your website – If your website is hosted in the city you service, it will add credibility to your website and as a result your ranking
  • Aged Domains – Old websites that have been around for a long time that have certain trust factors associated with them
  • Style of Link – The way Google measures the type of Link or Endorsement you send back to your site is constantly changing.

Evolving factors usually occur as a reaction to the marketplace and to stay ahead of the dodgy people that try to cut corners or find the loophole.

So SEO important? It depends on how you look at it. If you’re looking at finding new clients and growing your business then you need to ask where you can go to get that business. The Internet is more used than Television, Radio, Newspapers and any other medium of communication available today.

More people use search engines than Yellow Pages, or any of the mediums mentioned above to research and find a product or service. Also, SEO gives the little and medium sized guys a chance to compete with big guys.

Well … You Decide.