Two Tools for Improving Your Content Writing Skills

We recommend two tools for improving your content writing skills.  Install them on your computer today. They will make your life easier writing content for your business and personal for that matter. I consider them our ‘on-the-job training’ tools. They are the Yoast SEO plugin and Grammarly. Yoast SEO is a WordPress plugin. And Grammarly is installed at the browser level. We will show you how to install Grammarly in Chrome in a separate blog article.

QUOTE: “Creating compelling and useful content will likely influence your website more than any of the other factors.” Google, 2017

I run a “Get Your Blog Done” monthly workshop and one of the first things I have my students do is install the Yoast SEO plugin. Why? Because this handy plugin gives you warning on all sorts of areas for optimizing the content for search engines. Yes, you write your content for humans, but you have to also write for search engines. The job of the search engines is to serve up your content based on what people are searching for.

Yoast SEO is for people who don’t understand SEO. This is a tool to help you as you write to find out what the search engines expect from the content in regard to SEO.



Using Yoast SEO for improving your content writing skills

Two Tools to Improve Your Content Writing Skills - Yoast for SEO by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-Web MarketingAs you are writing, you can see the content readability and SEO score by looking at the right-hand column within the WordPress post. If your SEO is not complete it goes from red to yellow, to green. If it turns green, you’ve done a great job optimizing your content. It tells you if SEO is not available and when it is good. Yoast SEO grades the content for readability. If you use the simple wording, you’ll reach more of an audience. If you write like a college professor, you’re going to lose certain people. The readability scale goes from not available, to needs improvement, to ok, to good.

What types of improvement makes Yoast SEO score better?

I’m glad you asked. Because, as you get used to what it is telling you,  you’ll wonder how you ever wrote without Yoast SEO. Scroll down toward bottom of your blog you see three tabs in the Yoast SEO section; Readability, keyword: tools for improving your… and + Add Keyword (by upgrading to Yoast SEO Premium). I like to start with keyword section first. You ‘ll see that Yoast fills the snippet field for you. you can take what Yoast writes in or you can write your own version.

Edit Snippet in Yoast SEO

Read your article and write a snippet that is engaging to get the reader to click on your article. this is the first thing they see as you search. this snippet is what invites the viewer to click further. Create a lead magnet. For Example, If your blog is about “7 Tips for … “Give the first tip and then make them click to see the other 6.

This is the goal of writing content. Getting the viewer to click on your content. This is inbound marketing.

Focus Keyword

The focus keyword is the keyword phrase that you are using to get your content found. It is the main idea of your content. You have to make it relevant to the article at hand.

Need help? Join us the second Wednesday every month to “Get Your Blog Done”. Contact Carol Now.

The next time we meet is February 14, 2018, 9:30 am – 12:30. We sometimes meet in Providence RI and we sometimes meet online via ZOOM. We’ll set you up for whichever location suits your schedule. 

Analysis

TwoToolstoImproveYourContentWritingSkills - Yoast ANalysis by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-Web MarketingProblems

It’s telling me I’m not using the keyword in the first sentence, say it right up front. Once you decide n a keyword phrase that will give your content ranking power, Yoast wants you to use it in the title, the first sentence of the article and a couple more times throughout the content. Throw it into a couple headers and all the better for SEO ranking.

Yoast wants to see at least one image in the post. This image should include an Alt Tag using your “focus keyword”.  For example, the image in this Analysis section, the alt tag looks like this – “Two Tools for Improving Your Content Writing Skills by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-Web Marketing”. This does a couple of important things for your content. Search engines index your content not only on text but by images. Google throws them into their google images container. Having this Alt Tag describes what the image is about, gives credit to the author and to the company behind the author. For blind viewers, the alt tag is read aloud. For viewers who turn off images, or if the image goes missing, the alt tag is there describing the image.

  • The keyword density is 0.3%, which is too low; the focus keyword was found 2 times.

  • No images appear in this page, consider adding some as appropriate.

  • No internal links appear in this page, consider adding some as appropriate.

As you fix the errors YOast points out you’ll see the number of problems decrease.

Improvements

  • You have not used the focus keyword in any subheading (such as an H2) in your copy.

  • No outbound links appear in this page, consider adding some as appropriate. The strategy for linking to external sites on the web are to find those that already have high ranking power. Since Yoast SEO is a wordpress product, I’ve decided to link to Yoast SEO plugin wordpress site. 

  • The focus keyword does not appear in the URL for this page. If you decide to rename the URL be sure to check the old URL 301 redirects to the new one!  Copy and pasting the url into the permalink field.
  • The slug for this page contains stop words, consider removing them.

At this point, I checked on this documents Readability and SEO score and I have the green signal gone good. Yes!

Considerations

Considerations (1)

Yoast never likes stop words. I tend to ignore Yoast on this one.

Good

  • The meta description contains the focus keyword.

  • The meta description has a nice length.

  • The text contains 1017 words. This is more than or equal to the recommended minimum of 300 words.

  • This page has 0 nofollowed outbound link(s) and 3 normal outbound link(s).

  • This page has 0 nofollowed internal link(s) and 2 normal internal link(s).

  • The SEO title contains the focus keyword, at the beginning which is considered to improve rankings.

  • The SEO title has a nice length.

  • The focus keyword appears in the URL for this page.

  • You’ve never used this focus keyword before, very good.

Isn’t it nice to know when we are doing a good job? And you thought this was easy. Optimizing the content can take as much time as writing the content. In the end, it is worth the effort. Its an investment in time and skill with long-term return asset for your online presence.

Readability

Two tools for improving content writing skills - Readability highlights by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-Web Marketing

Page Down and select the Readability tab. Click the eye. Yoast SEO is telling you to make improvement in the following area

  • 18.7% of the sentences contain a transition word or phrase, which is less than the recommended minimum of 30%.

As you scroll back up, you see sentences highlighted. These are the sentences Yoast is saying to increase the number of transition words. As you make corrections, the issues will disappear.

Grammarly  – a Tool for Improving Your Content Writing Skills

Two Tools for Improving Your Content Writing Skills - Grammarly by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-web MarketingOnce you install Grammarly extension into your browser, it will begin redlining your words that may be grammatically incorrect, incorrect punctuation, remove any unnecessary, change out words (of, for, this, that, in, with). As you write, it is flagging words sentences, you hover over the words, Grammarly provides corrections. you select the best option, or not. It’s so helpful. You know how it is when you’ve been writing for a while. You can read and reread your document several times and miss grammar errors. Maybe it’s the way you talk. Maybe you’re tired. Grammarly has saved me countless hours.

Hope this helps. Please feel free to email me with questions and comments.

Relevant articles

How to Install Yoast SEO Plugin in WordPress.  Coming Soon!

How to Install Grammarly Chrome browser extension. – Coming Soon!

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What were our most read insightful articles in 2017?

Before we begin to accelerate into the new year, we thought we would pause and take a look back through the articles we posted in 2017. Our articles covered a range of marketing and sales related topics, but these 4 were the most popular and here’s why we think they resonated with the business community.

Here are our 4 most read Insight articles from 2017:

Website Strategy

  1. What Should Your Website Strategy Be? Are you using your website to full potential? Your website is your profit center. It is the foundation of your online marketing strategy.We show you how the right website strategy mixed with best practices, SEO, and engaging content crafting will help you create a winning online presence that can help you generate more leads, sell more products, increase brand awareness, and free you and your employees up to handle more business.We repurposed this article into a workshop and received excellent reviews. Join us! Register to attend our next workshop February 7, 2018.    [button link=”http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=pwjaircab&oeidk=a07eez1nf7f5aa7563b” color=”red” newwindow=”yes”] Register Now[/button]

Get Organized with our Content Marketing Calendar

  1. Get Organized. Download our 2017 Content Marketing Calendar and Learn How to Use It.  Visit our website to download the 2018 Content Marketing Calendar. How will you use content as a means to introduce and educate your target audience about your products and services? This article helps you plan content 3, 6, 9 months to a year.

On-Page SEO Checklist 2018

  1. On-Page SEO Checklist 2018.  Make no mistake, SEO [search engine optimization] isn’t just for search engines, it’s for humans too. Utilize SEO strategies such as subtitles; this will organize your content, making it easier for your visitors to read through and remember the information.  Get our 13 point checklist to ensure your success to higher ranking.

How to Write the Perfect Blog

  1. How to Write the Perfect Blog  Master your craft by understanding the role of each section creating the attention-grabbing headline, opening statement, the hero image, a couple strategic sub-headers, emotion-evoking content, the How-to section and strategically placed call-to-action items. The infographics helps you see the big picture.

As Neil Patel explains, your successful click-thru-rate is in the attention grabbing Call-to-Action headlines.

As we look back at this past year, we’re happy how much the online community has grown and all that we’ve accomplished together. We’ve had a busy year and we have so many cool things planned for 2018. So, stay tuned and we’ll have loads more to tell you soon.

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How to Plan Your Blog. Business to Consumer Marketing.

How to Plan Your Blog

for Business to Consumer Marketing. The 4 C’s.

A business to consumer marketing approach involves the consumer, the cost of your product, the convenience for customer to purchase your product and service, and your communication to your customer. We discuss incorporating the 4 C’s with setting your goals for developing your content, blogging for your audience,  what topics to focus your content, promoting your blog, and analyzing statistics. Planning your B2C blog works in tandem with your B2C eCommerce website strategy. Let’s get started.

  1. Consumer. ( versus Product) Study your consumers’ wants and needs. Create products tailored to these desires and needs.
  2. Cost (Versus Price) Reflect the reality of total cost. If you sell a computer, the cost of searching or driving to a retail store to purchase it should be taken into account.
  3. Convenience (Versus Place) Understand your customer’s preferred method of purchase – on the Internet, in the store, by phone, or from a catalogue. Maybe there’s another method in your industry. Is social media; Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn where your audience is hanging out?
  4. Communication. (versus Promotion) Focus on communications between customers and businesses. It’s broader than just promotion. Communication is as much about listening as it is about talking.

A Content Marketing strategy is about 25% of a successful marketing plan. You need to drive traffic to your engaging content. Learn more about our program to your success in Best Way to Spend $1000 Marketing Your Business.

Goals

How to Plan Your Blog. Business to Consumer Marketing.Building Your Brand involves building trust with your customers. How do you build trust? Have a reliable customer support team. The task of customer service should then be issued to highly skilled personnel to handle the queries and concerns both online and on calls. On a 24-hour basis.  Yes, having a 24 hours’ customer service means an extra cost. However,  you’re building long-lasting confidence with your consumers.

Attract Prospects. Develop a solid online presence with an eCommerce website that allows the consumer to easily purchase your product online. Drive traffic to your website using social media, paid advertising such as with Google AdWords, and email marketing campaigns. Attend trade shows. Network like crazy.

Support Sales. How to get it just right in 3 steps. One, the quandary of sales support: What level is just right to drive the most sales and growth? McKinsey & Company: Marketing & Sales found that devoting 50 – 60 percent of sales employees to support functions is optimal. Two, what matters most is the levels of operations and administrative support. They are invaluable because they enable frontline and pre-sales employees to spend more time with customers and to focus on sales and growth. Third: Nailing the ratio of non-managers to managers.  The highest-performing companies have a ratio of non-managers to managers of around 8:1. Among lower-performing companies in our analysis, the ratio was greater than 10:1 or lower than 5:1.

Aid SEO. Blogging aids in search engine optimization by establishing your company as an expert in your field. You can lead your customers through your process by the topics you choose to write. Part of the structure of a blog is to link to authoritative sites, link within your site and create fresh content on a consistent basis. Linking to authoritative sites helps your content rank higher as search engines deliver your content during search results. Linking between blogs or content within your site help rank higher the content you want to get noticed.

What really helps move the needle is getting domain authority sites to link back to your website with relevant keyword phrases. This takes a little time and effort but pays back in dividends. Neil Patel is a great resource for this. Neil tells you from how to find topics people are searching to what to write in a letter to an owner of a domain authority site. Seek out domain authority sites of 80+. A tool we use is Moz. Signing up is free.

Blog Audience

Prospects. Customers. Fans. Public. Media.

Blogging for your prospects. We could spend an entire day on the buyers’ journey and be blogging for each stage. In the Awareness Stage, a buyer is trying to solve problems, get an answer, or meet a need. Providing content for making prospects aware of what you offer can be in the form of white papers, ebooks (getting more popular and profitable), Kits, Tip Sheets, Checklists, How To Videos, and Educational Webinars. When consumers are evaluating your product, providing product webinars, case studies, samples, FAQ’s, data sheets and demonstration videos prove successful in converting prospects to customers. At the Purchase stage, provide free trials, live demos, consultations, Estimates, and Coupons.

Blogging for your Customers.  Since this audience has purchased a product or service, continue to educate them on how to best use the product or service for the problem your offer solves. Engage them by asking them to share how they have used your product. Ask for Reviews along the sales cycle as well as the product itself. As they encounter questions about your product, use these questions for content for your blog posts.

Blog Content Focus.

Offering. Community. Location.

Offering. Provide limited time offer promotions. Tie content marketing to limited time offers. Due to taxes, laws, regulations, as well as supply and demand, offers or special promotions are usually localized. Contests, drawings, apps, or content downloads and other engaging activities can be used to entice your customers to participate. A contest can be used to encourage users to share your content or create user-generated content to win prices.

Community. You may be local. Know what your local customer needs and wants. Your company may be national or international. Each community buys in different ways, for different reasons, and variations of a product or service because of the community.

Location. Your content focus for each location of your customers. Think locally, nationally, and internationally. Local teams can help provide a local perspective for each area.

Blog Content Format.

Text. Image or Photo. Video or Audio.  Presentation or eBook. Our blog [The Retail Factor] posts “How to write the Perfect Blog” and “How to Format the Perfect Blog” both go into detail about the format to consider including the header, opening sentence, images and video, strategic call-to-actions. Evoke emotions. Get Leads. eBooks are one of the most

Blogger(s)

Marketing or PR. Product. Executive. Sales. Customer Service. Customers. Ghost Writers.

Copy Support

Tech Support. Outside Editors. Creative. Copy Editor.

Blog Promotion

email. Social Media Platforms. Social Sharing. Third-Party Media Use.

Now that you have inspiring, emotional content to share. How are you going to get the word out? How are you going to get traffic to your blog and website? Ways of driving traffic.

email to promote your Blog. Segment your audiences in lists within your email marketing software. Think about the content you have written. How does it help solve problems for each segment? Don’t overwhelm them with all of your blog posts. Pick 2 or 3.

Social Media Platforms. For a business to consumer communication, the traffic drivers that are in the top ten are Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google +. Use social media to find content for your curation strategy. Pay attention to what content is shared most. Post multiple times throughout a period of time using different copy. Define which channels, headlines and copy work best for you. For small- and medium-sized businesses, this is really the engine of content promotion. Pay attention to the sentiment and engagement levels from your audience.

Social Sharing. Social Sharing should always be part of your website content. Shared content increases your credibility.

Blog Metrics

Blog Metrics that matter is visitors Reach, Improved SEO, Brand Awareness, Sales, Expense, and Media Pickup.

The budget for your Blog

The budget you set aside for your blog depends on your company. If you have a zero budget, blog content yourself and recruit your team to contribute. If you have a relatively small budget – $1000 per month. You can hire an outside firm to assist you.

Hit-the-Web Marketing has been helping companies develop the right content marketing strategy for your company for over ten years. In several industries, we may have your product and service pages ranking on the first page within 6 to 12 months. Ready to Work with us?

Learn How To Create the Perfect Blog

Learn How to Create the Perfect Blog

Attend Get Your Blog Done Monthly - we hold you accountable - you gain website assetsand optimize it for search engines by applying our On-Page SEO Checklist for 2017.

Did You Know New Content is the Way to Win Higher Ranking for your Website? Create a Content Strategy Based on Your Business Goals and Sales Process.   

As they say in marketing, “Content is King.” Done right, it will attract your perfect customer. A blog is a great way to help drive brand awareness and increase your website SEO ranking! Our first workshop in May 2017 was a success. From it evolved this workshop called ‘Get Your Blog Done’ as a way to make sure we dedicate at least 3 hours a month and roll out at least one blog. 2 to 4 is better but you do what you can.

In this three hour workshop, you will Learn how to

  • Plan & Prepare for your next blog and every blog thereafter. With our help, you’ll see how to perform SEO Keyword research that will lead you to the right keyword phrases to use when developing your blog content.
  • Choose Content: We’ll help you know HOW to choose the most effective content (images, video, etc) to attract your perfect customer.
  • Build the Blog: You’ll learn HOW to structure your blog content to get the best results (for humans and search engines).

Apply Our On-Page SEO Checklist for 2017

If Content is King, then SEO is the Messenger. Make no mistake, SEO matters! Clear content and SEO must work together to create a successful online presence. You’ve worked hard to put content together for your website page or blog. Why not take time and make sure the search engines are going to notice?

The goal is to get content ranking on the first page of search results. We’ll show you:

  • How to apply on-page SEO tactics — no coding required!

Who Should Attend:

Entrepreneurs, Business Owners, Marketing team, Bloggers, Content Marketers, Content Writers, anyone in online marketing industry.

Fees:

  • $69 for drop-ins
  • 6 – month membership for $60/month ($360)
  • 12 – month membership for $55/month ($660)
Questions? Want to add this topic to one of your events? Contact Carol by email or call (781) 996-9163 today.

5 Take-Aways from this workshop – How to Create the Perfect Blog

  1. How to perform effective keyword research.
  2. An Infographic of the layout of the Perfect Blog.
  3. Lifetime access to the 9 Ways to optimize the content for On-Page SEO in 2017.
  4. Hands on experience with two instructors in group collaboration.
  5. Savings of $80 of the usual 1-1 phone consultation with Hit-the-Web Marketing.

Your Instructors

Deb Goeschel is a creative and effective communicator through content. She has a strong belief that by empowering cause- and mission-driven businesses and entrepreneurs with the ability to effectively share their vision, she can help make a positive impact on the world. She helps business owners find the success they deserve through business-transforming marketing. Just because you own a smaller business, doesn’t mean you should settle for small marketing and profits! Deb@MessageArtist.com
Carol Scalzo is an experienced website developer and digital marketing strategy consultant. She manages email and lead nurturing, paid marketing, and ecommerce channels for companies. Carol knows the ins and outs of developing and implementing a strong marketing strategy. She is passionate about teaching marketers and business owners how to effectively utilize digital marketing to drive more leads and customers to your business. 781-996-9163Carol@hitthewebmarketing.com

How To Write the Perfect Blog

Oh my God, the pressure! Write the Perfect blog! Getting started with your blog article might be the toughest part. Incorporate the following components for success. Success is defined not only by the number of opens but also the shares. Master your craft by understanding the role of each section creating the attention-grabbing headline, opening statement, the hero image, a couple strategic sub-headers, emotion-evoking content, the How-to section and strategically placed call-to-action items.

  1. The Headline. The goal of the headline is to grab your reader’s attention. You have about 3 seconds. Here’s where you include the most highly searched keyword phrase.
  2. The Opening Statement. Key insight. Direct marketers have long known that if you get people to read your first 3-4 sentences, they are more likely to read your entire article. The point of your Opening statement is to get people to read your opening. Take Action Save the image to the left for future reference.
  3. Half-width Image. Images add interest. They help tell your story. 5 powerful reasons to add images to your blog. Search engines are looking for images. They index them. It’s another way to raise your ranking online. Does the filename of your image matter? Yes! Please name it using the best keyword phrase that you did hard work researching. Images are known to provoke more social media shares. That’s free advertising! Take Action: See what others images look like and change the colors to fit your brand, change the text to fit your title and your most import keyword phrase.
  4. SubHead. This sub-head has one main goal. To entice your people to read your first piece of content. That’s it! How? Make a promise to your readers… give them a benefit.
  5. Content. Connect Emotionally. Your first piece of content should aim to trigger an emotion in your reader. When people get emotional, they tend to pay attention. They are more likely to take action after being put into an emotional state.
  6. First CTA #1 – call-to-action. Use a ‘click to tweet’ quote right here. Why? Who do people quote? People quote authorities. Enticing people to quote you, positions you as an authority. Plus, people like tweeting quotes and you’ll get more traffic from social media as a result.

A Content Marketing strategy is about 25% of a successful marketing plan. You need to drive traffic to your engaging content. Learn more about our program to your success in Best Way to Spend $1000 Marketing Your Business.

Hey YOU!  Pay attention! Step 1 – Trigger an emotion. Find out the 8 more ways to get their attention!

  1. Sub-head #2. Promise #2. Here’s where you tell people exactly what they’ll learn. The step-by-step method. The How-to. You already connected. Now’s the time to get them to take action.
  2. The How-To Section. Give people practical, easy to implement advice. Get people results and they’ll remember you forever. Also, practical useful content is the most viral content.
  3. CTA #2. Buy or Subscribe? Here’s where you close out your article with another call-to-action. You can include a ‘buy now’ or ‘subscribe’. I usually use subscribe.

89 Ways Inbound Marketing Creates Customers by Hit-the-Web Marketing

 

 

How can we help you with content marketing and driving traffic to your blog? Customer Service is available to take your call 781-996-9163.

How To Format the Perfect Blog

Many bloggers go to work writing, writing, writing. However, they fail to remember to make the content visually appealing and easy to scan. We need to include a basic format to make the content easy to read. Image to the Left. Look familiar? Would you want to read on?

Let’s get started.

  1. First, Create an SEO Friendly headline. And refer to the On-Page SEO Checklist for more details.
  2. Have only one Header 1 title. Use your best keyword phrase as the Main Title.
  3. Have 5-6 Header 2 subtitles.
  4. Write 2-3 sentences per paragraph. Use appropriate subtitles to provide an overview of the content.
  5. Create a Call-to-Action in the middle and near the end of the post. Make them count. Get email signup for your newsletter so you can nurture them into a client. Provide a ebook download to offer value.
  6. Insert at least 1 hero image or video
  7. Create Alt tags for images using your best searched keywords and the name of the company for whom you are writing. Assuming your research for the best keyword phrase, use the same keyword phrase you use in the title of this article. for example, ‘How To Format The Perfect Blog by Carol Scalzo of Hit-the-Web Marketing’. This is why your images need to be relevant to your content. Also, if the image is turned off, the description here will tell the visitor the meaning of the image. If the person is blind, the computer will use the Alt tag to read the description out loud.
  8. Create at least 2 internal links to complimentary pages or pages you want to boost ranking for in search engines.
  9. Create an external link to a high authority website. One that is very popular AND well regarded. (no hacker or porn sites)
  10. Make sure hyperlinks and images Open in A New Tab.
  11. Have social media buttons so visitors can share to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.

A Content Marketing strategy is about 25% of a successful marketing plan. You need to drive traffic to your engaging content. Learn more about our program to your success in Best Way to Spend $1000 Marketing Your Business.

Yes, I want Carol to Review My Website

 

 

Just a few tweaks and you can get your content ranking higher because it converts. Work toward making it look like the following:

How To Format The Perfect BlogThe second image to the left shows what a blog strengthened with blog best practices and search engine optimization looks like. The goal is to use WordPress SEO tactics. What’s good? Check the Readability and SEO. The Goal is for Readability to be Good. Define Good! The copy score for this blog scores 78.2% which is fairly easy to read. The goal is to be 65% or higher.

A free resource to help you obtain search engine optimization best practices is to install

the SEO for Yoast plugin for WordPress. If you are unsure how to install this plugin, feel free to contact Carol at Hit-the-Web Marketing by calling 781.996.9163

Find out how every one of your blog articles can convert. We periodically run a 3 hour workshop to show how this is done.

You’ll learn

How To Format the Perfect Blog, Before & After

How to Write the Perfect Blog and How to Apply On-Page SEO for 2017. Learn this once and you can apply it many times over. Worth $1000’s.

Coming Soon! Get organized and plan your content marketing strategy. Download our 2017 Content Marketing Calendar. 

and learn how to use it.

 

89 Ways Inbound Marketing Creates Customers by Hit-the-Web Marketing


Why Use Instagram for Business?

Why use Instagram for business? Instagram is s great way to expand the audience for your business. Instagram has over 400 million daily active users. Since the past two years the amount of users has doubled.  About 51% are male, 49% are females. The number of monthly active users in the US in 2016 was 78 million. Let’s talk 9 Tips Using Instagram for Business.

10 tips to use instagram to grow salesOver a third of Instagram users have used their mobile to purchase a product online– making them 70% more likely to do so than non-users” and 50% of users follow brands.

How does Instagram Work? Learn the Lingo.

In Instagram, you will want a short bio pointing visitors to your website so they know where to buy your products. Where are your products made? Are they Made in the USA?

Track your website traffic from Instagram by using a discount code “Instagram” so you can see how many people buy using the code.

Instagram is good for advertising. Create a community and have contests. Allow visitors to post photos how they use your products. They can tag your Instagram page and you can repost that photo, showing that people use the product and the ideas that other people have when they use the product. This gives the brand even more exposure. This works especially well if the person that originally posted the photo already has a big following, redirecting them to your companies page and increasing sales.

People can like the photo, comment, save it so they can see it later, and send it to their friends via private message.

A Content Marketing strategy is about 25% of a successful marketing plan. You need to drive traffic to your engaging content. Learn more about our program to your success in Best Way to Spend $1000 Marketing Your Business.

How to Get Your Instagram Posts Noticed

Hashtags # on photos have been known to increase the number of views by 50%. Post daily and use images to show your products. The more active you are on your Instagram page, the more interest you create. There are certain times of the day that will help get the photos more exposure. Use hashtags that are commonly used in searches. Tagging your photo will help gain exposure. This kind of exposure is why using Instagram for a business is really a good idea especially if you want to expand your audience of who is looking to buy.

How Frequently Should You Post?

Post on Instagram consistently. Once or twice a day is the best. More specifically, according to Hubspot, post all day every day, Sunday through Saturday, except between 3pm and 4pm on Instagram.

What Time to Post in Instagram?

They say posting any time of day is best. It depends on when your biggest fans are online. We find that posting images at 5pm gets the most attention and likes or hearts. This increase the chances for a sale.

What to Post on Instagram?

  • Tips
  • Behind-the-Scenes photos
  • Your product photos and links
  • Questions and posts
  • Good content from others
  • Your blog post likes
  • Offers and discounts
  • Competition announcements
  • Events
  • Testimonials and success stories
  • Funny snippets from your life
  • Videos
  • fill-in-the-blanks
  • Interesting facts
  • Sneak peek photos
  • Old popular content
  • Recommendations
  • Have Fun, be fun.

Before posting, ask yourself “Is what  I’m sharing useful, interesting, informative, and entertaining? Will it help my audience to connect with me and my brand?

Top Tips for Using Instagram for Business

  1. Don’t forget to be social. Interact with your followers by liking and commenting on their posts too.
  2. Where you can, include an attractive visual element such as photo, graphics or video to your posts to increase engagement.
  3. People aren’t on social media to be sold to but people generally buy people. So, take a ‘soft sell’ approach and mix promotional posts with more personal and informative content.
  4. When you want your followers to take action, include one clear ‘call-to-action’ to tell them what to do next. Otherwise, they will just carry on scrolling.
  5. Check your social media analytics to see what is working well for you then do more of that!

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7 Elements of an Effective Website Strategy

Does your website strategy accelerate growth? The success of your business depends on a winning plan. With the website as the center of your business foundation, as well as marketing, customer support, employees, business partners, sales, business partners, and PR.

1. Know what you want – Set Organizational Goals

What are you trying to accomplish? Be mindful of website usability and design from your client’s perspective. How can we use the website to achieve organizational objectives?

Possible  organizational website objectives

  • Increase sales
  • Generate leads
  • Reduce support costs
  • oster loyalty among customers
  • Streamline processes

2. Know Your Audience

Who’s this thing for? Why are people coming to our site? What are they expecting to find? How can we make the site easier for them to use?

Make a list of all potential audiences

  • Primary Audience. Prospective customer. Secondary Audience. Customers, potential investors, partners and potential partners, analysts/ press, employees, potential employees.
  • Primary Audience Profile. List everything you know about them.
    • Demographics
    • Key decision drivers
    • What’s appealing to them about your product or service?
    • What makes them tick?
    • All Audiences in General – answer the following questions.
      • What does your client Company XYZ do?
      • How do the products and services work?
      • How does the company compare with what I’m doing now?
      • Are services available in my area?
      • How much does the product/service cost?

Credibility

Who are XYZ’s customers? What do customer say about the product or service?

Next Steps

  • Are there any deals and special offers available?
  • Can I talk to a live person?
  • How do I get started?

Treat Your Web Site Like a Business

7 Elements of an Effective Website Strategy - Emphasis on Forms and Landing Pages for Best lead Generating websitesSpell out your Website Game Plan. What are your Objectives? What are you trying to accomplish?

Strategy
How are you going to accomplish your goals?

 

Create a Web Site Strategy

Set Goals.

The objective is to grow online sales by 25% over the next 12  months without an increase in ad spending.

What’s Your Strategy?

  • Enhance SEO efforts to drive incremental free traffic.
  • Refine paid search campaigns to drive higher volumes of qualified traffic at the same or lower CPC.
  • Redesign selected areas to increase conversion rate on direct, organics and partner traffic.
  • Develop custom landing pages for each primary target audience AND product to increase conversion rate on a banner, email and paid search traffic.

Measure the Right Metrics

5 Metrics that DON”T Matter

  1. Traffic.
  2. Time on Site and Average Page Views.
  3. Hits.
  4. Surveys.
  5. Focus groups.

 

Industry Average Conversion rates.

Business Metrics Site Metrics User Metrics
Revenue Conversion rate User Testing Results
Transactions Most Visited Pages Satisfaction Survey Trends
Profit Time on Site Focus Group Feedback
Gross Margin Traffic Customer Support Inquiries
Site Type Metrics
Selling Products or Services Online Revenue, Profit, Conversion Rate, Average Order Value, Average cost per conversion
Lead Generation Sites Lead Volume, Conversion Rate, Revenue originating from web leads, Cost Per Lead, Revenue Per Visit.
Ad
-based content sites
Revenue, Profit, Average Page Views Per Visit, Average Cost Per Visit, Average Revenue Per Visit.

Prioritize Design Efforts

As the image above shows, common design priorities are often the home page at the top, then Category, Forms, Landing Pages as a last thought. The winning website design effort for better lead generating websites lies in placing the most efforts in what makes the cash register ring! The checkout page. Actually, it’s the confirmation page that ensures the purchase. You get the idea. Then put thought into the Detail page as potential customers compare your products as well as your products with your competition. The category page then the Home Page. The home page is the table of contents of your website.

Create, Measure, Learn

Your website is never “done”. Think of it as a long term initiative. Technology is always changing. Competitive environments  always changing. User expectations are always evolving.

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PPC Marketing. A Good Fit For Your Company?

Pay Per Click Marketing

Is PPC Marketing Right for Your Business?PPC Marketing is a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked.

Essentially, its a way of buying visits to your site, rather than attempting to “earn” those visits organically. Search engine advertising is one of the most popular forms of PPC.

Hit-the-Web Marketing offers PPC Consulting and PPC Management Services.

Are Pay-per-click Ads Right for Your Business? Originally appeared on BusinessTown

How do pay per click ads work?

In a PPC Campaign, you pay google however much you wish to have them list ads for your site at the top and right of the organic search listings. When someone clicks on your add, you pay the current Cost Per Click CPC from your budget.

8 Questions to ask about Pay Per Click Marketing

  1. Is your website designed to be search engine friendly?
  2. Does your site rank well in the “organic” search engine results pages?
  3. Do you have a new site that has been optimized for the search engines, but is not old enough to rank well yet?
  4. Do you want to increase your overall click-through rate by having your company appear in both the paid and organic listings?
  5. Do you need to “fill the holes” for keyword phrases that your site does not rank highly for in the search engine rankings?
  6. Do you want to better understand the potential traffic a given keyword phrase generates to plan for your website development or SEO program?
  7. Do you want to test which keyword phrases convert the best for your current website?
  8. Would like to control which landing pages visitors use to enter your website?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, Pay Per Click Marketing could benefit your company.

Which Pay Per Click Ad Programs generate the most traffic?

The three primary pay per click ad programs are Google Adwords, Bing, and Yahoo!. A majority of pay per click advertising management firms and companies report they receive significantly more visitors (traffic) from their Google Adwords campaigns.

We use Google Adwords as our starting point when establishing a new PPC advertising program. Once you spend several weeks or more going through all of the PPC program tutorials, it is possible to create pay per click campaigns with any of the big three PPC providers in a matter of days. Unfortunately, creating a click campaign is one thing, creating a profitable PPC program is much more difficult. If you plan to attempt the “do-it-yourself” route with pay per click, be sure to study through Googles online AdWords study guide.

Is Pay Per Click Marketing a good fit for your company?

Know there are things you can do today to start increasing your leads.

Schedule a 15-minute session. Give us a call or Request a Consultation. Pay Per Click Consultant is standing by with Hit-the-Web Marketing to answer your questions.

Ready to Turn Your Website Into A Lead Generating Machine?

 

Benefits of PPC Marketing

  • Get Fast Results in getting your pages ranking at the first or near top search result pages.
  • Boost in Traffic to your website.
  • Get more visitors to conversions.
  • Obtain better brand awareness.
  • Obtain a higher rank in search engine result pages (SERPs).
  • Equalize the playing field with your competition.
  • Gain an edge by listing at or near the top of results.
  • See Your Return on Investment sooner than later.
  • Create trust with potential customers

Furthermore,

  • You have to have a budget. Expect to invest $500 to $1000 per month. It is an investment.
  • You are investing in other areas of digital marketing as well.
  • Your site is solid.
  • You are confident in your PPC experts, that they are well rounded in other digital marketing efforts such as social media, blogging, SEO, landing pages, and engaging content.

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What Should Your Website Strategy Be?

Your website is your profit center. It is the foundation of your online marketing strategy. Today we’re going to show you… how the right website strategy mixed with clear content and On-Page SEO must work together for the success of your online presence.

Well done keyword research will lead you to the right keyword phrases to use in developing your content and optimizing for search engines (SEO).

This research tells you how customers are searching for your products and services online and it is directing the search engines to serve your business information on the first page of search results.

We will help you create a winning online presence that can help you generate more leads, sell more products, increase brand awareness, and free up you and your employees to handle more business.

Which strategy is right for your business? What type of website will lead your business to success?

Which website strategy is right for your business?

We discuss 6 types of websites. It may be one of, or a combination of, selling products, selling services, assist in lead generation, ad-based content sites used to reduce support costs, foster loyalty among customers, and streamline processes.

High converting websites. It is a fact that 96% of visitors that come to your website are not ready to buy.

What Should Your Website Strategy BeWhen it comes to your website, you must prioritize your design efforts. When it comes to a website, the most common priority of design efforts is toward the home page 85%, category pages, detail pages, with forms, and landing pages getting the least amount of marketing design effort.

We propose rethinking design efforts toward obtaining more conversions. Design priorities with highest efforts toward forms and landing pages. These pages make the register ring.

Before you build a website

Consider four elements that make a successful site. A useful tool is our Web Strategy Template. Download Now.

First, mobile responsive website.

Make sure the website is mobile responsive. 85% of the population is searching the internet using their mobile phones. The design and layout should render well across all platforms. The mobile phone, the tablet, and the iPad, the laptop, and mac.

Security website.

Https:// is no longer just for sites that process credit card information. It’s a consumer trust builder. https: provides protection to the visitor as they see page information display on their screen that is less vulnerable to being hacked and infected with a virus. It is now for securing data. And, for SEO reasons, google grades and ranks the site based on https. If it is not found, the site is lowered in ranking.

Third, WebSite Performance.

A sites performance is graded based on page size. It should no bigger than 3 MB. Browser Caching. Limit the number of Page Requests. Items such as 301 redirects increase page requests, which in turn slow down the page as it loads to the screen. Page speed. You have 3 seconds to deliver the page to the screen. Otherwise, you’ll find your visitors abandoning your website. The demands are tough. But then, I was thinking. if Enzo Ferrari can make a 2980 # car go from 0 – 60 in 3.1 seconds. What are the possibilities of a web page? An easy tool to use is hubspot gem is website.grader.com. And, by the way, a 1 second delay can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.

Last, SEO.

Search engine ranking involves many facets, both on-page and off-page optimization for relevant and informative information. Onpage seo. Title tags, unique meta descriptions, well-researched keyword phrases that are used in content, alt tags on images, and a minimum of 300 words per page.

While building your website make sure to

Write Compelling headlines.

Engaging the reader with 8 seconds is key to success in keeping them interested in what you offer. Headlines that are getting opens and clicks include 10 Ways to …, How-to profit big from…, A Thought Provoking Question.

Create Videos

It’s a fact that product videos can increase purchases by 144%. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth a million.

Perform A/B Testing

A method for figuring out the best online promotional and marketing strategies for your business. This is a method of testing changes to a page of changing one item with the goal in mind of increasing conversion. Where can you apply A/B Testing? Web content, email campaigns, PPC ads, and landing pages. What to test. The headline, call-to-action, images and product descriptions. Are you buying products from manufacturers? Are you using their description of your products? This runs the risk of duplicate content. Search engines are scanning all websites for duplicate content. This hurts the ranking when this occurs on one website and the same content on many websites.

Part 2: Content is King … Coming soon.

Part 3: SEO is the Messenger … Coming soon.

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