Category Archives: Website Tips

setting up a domain

Setting Up a Domain For Your Website

A website is an essential part of doing business. Customers who are looking for your product or service will turn to search engines first. And if your business doesn’t have a website they can find via search engines, then they probably won’t find you at all.

So, building a website for your business should be a top priority. Once the website is built and ready to launch, the final step is securing a domain name that works for your business.

Have questions about setting up a domain name? This quick guide will walk you through everything you need to know.

Choosing a Domain Name That Fits Your Business

What’s a domain name? It’s the web address that shows in the URL bar of an Internet browser. Think of a domain name as the name of your website. 

Because it’s the name of your business’s website, the domain name you choose should reflect your business. Ideally, the domain name you choose would be the name of your business – www.yourbusinessnamehere.com. 

However, this isn’t always possible, especially if your business has a common name. The domain name needs to be available for you to use it for your business’s website.

How Do You Find Out if a Domain Name is Available?

Domain names are registered by companies known as domain registrars. When you’re looking for a domain name for your site, you can use the website of one of these domain registrars to check if the domain name you want is available. Each of these domain registrars checks a database that tells them which domain names are available.

If the domain name you want is available, then the domain registrar will allow you to purchase the domain name and register it on your behalf. If the domain name you want isn’t available, then the domain registrar will usually offer suggestions for an available domain that might work for your business.

When the domain name you want isn’t available and you don’t like the suggestions made by the registrar’s site, you can brainstorm your domain names as well.

Using Different Top-Level Domains

You might start by checking to see if your domain name is available on another top-level domain name. Top-level domain names refer to the end of the URL. Usually, this is .com. But other top-level domain names include .co, .biz, .net and many others. Your preferred domain name may be available on one of these top-level domains when it’s not available on .com. 

Using a different top-level domain has advantages and disadvantages. The major advantage is that you can usually find the domain name you want on a less popular top-level domain. But some customers are skeptical of sites that end in top-level domains other than .com, .org, and .edu because they are so used to seeing these top-level domains.

In general, it’s better for branding to stick with your preferred domain name, even if it’s on a less popular top-level domain.

Tweaking Your Preferred Domain Name

If your preferred domain name isn’t available on any top-level domain or if you’re adamant about having a .com site, then you’ll need to get creative with your domain name. 

You can try using recognizable abbreviations for part of your business name in the domain name. Or if you use abbreviations in your business name you can spell them out in your domain name. You can also try adding a word that describes your product/services to your business name in the domain.

Make sure that your domain doesn’t get too long though. Long domains are confusing for customers and don’t work well for branding.

Setting up a Domain Name

Once you’ve chosen your domain name and verified that it’s available, it’s time to set up the domain name. You’ll need to purchase the domain name and register it with a domain registrar.

Often, the service you used to build your website will have the option for them to purchase and register the domain on your behalf for an extra fee. The fee structure for this is usually a one-time purchase to secure and register the domain name, and a yearly fee to renew the domain registration.

If the service you used for your website doesn’t offer domain registration or you don’t want to use their service, you can set up your domain directly with a domain registrar. Some popular domain registrars are GoDaddy, Bluehost, Domain.com, and NameCheap. There are many others out there as well.

Choosing the Right Domain Registrar for Your Business

When choosing a domain registrar, pay close attention to the services they offer as well as their prices. It can be tempting to go with the registrar that’s offering the cheapest price for your chosen domain. But if they don’t have the customer service to support you, you’ll have a hard time when you have issues with your domain or if you want to make changes.

Look for a registrar that offers good customer service, auto-renewal for your domain so your ownership of the domain doesn’t lapse, transfer lock so domain auction services can’t sell your domain out from under you, good site load times, and privacy measures so your personal information doesn’t show when others search to see if your domain is available.

Once you’ve chosen your domain registrar and set the domain up through them, they’ll help you launch your website on your new domain. They’ll also give you a login to their back end so you’ll be able to make changes to your domain settings if needed. If you’re unsure of how to use the backend or make changes, be sure to contact the registrar’s customer service.

More Tips for Launching an Effective Business Website

Choosing the right domain name for your business’s website is key to your website’s performance. It’s also essential for your business’s branding. After reading this quick guide, you should have all the information you need about setting up a domain.

For more tips on how to launch and run an effective website for your business, check out our blog.

copywriting vs. content writing

Copywriting Vs. Content Writing: Know The Difference

For more than 3,500 years, Aesop’s Fables have used storytelling to teach lessons to children. 

The Tortoise and the Hare fable teaches that it is better to be slow and steady than it is to be fast and over-confident. The Lion and the Mouse fable illustrates that you can still help someone or something much larger than yourself, no matter how small you are. 

Storytelling is so effective at conveying a message that people still use it to this day, but it has a new name: 

Content Writing. 

When done well, this type of writing draws its readers into a world of their own and helps them to understand how a brand or product can affect their lives for the better through a story. 

When done exceptionally well, content writing interweaves copywriting throughout the story to convince the reader they need something and calls that reader to action. 

For this reason, it is important to understand what both types of writing are, how they are similar, and how they are different. To help you with that, this article gives you a rundown of copywriting vs. content writing. Read on to learn more. 

What is Content Writing? 

The modern era has made it easy to learn anything you want. All you need is a computer and an internet connection, and you have a compilation of the world’s knowledge at your fingertips. 

Add to that the fact that everyone wants something for nothing and you have the backbone of content writing. 

Content writing provides useful, often actionable, information to people through story. The lessons learned and the information provided is often free. The hope is that this free information plants a seed of trust that causes them to come back when they need more information. 

YOU Make Content King

At first glance, you might think the headline has a typo in it, but you would be wrong. Content is not made king by you the writer, it is king because of the word you. 

Content writing is so powerful because it brings the reader into the story. It makes them a part of what they are reading and it does so with the use of the word you. 

When you use the word you in your content, you are giving your readers the power to imagine themselves with your product or service.

Content writing is suggestive. It plants an idea more than it convinces. 

What is Copywriting? 

Copywriting is less storytelling and more direct selling. It tells the reader what you want from them and asks them to do it. 

You see copywriting every day, but if it is done well, you won’t even realize that’s what it is.

It is the button that asks you to subscribe to a newsletter. It is the last paragraph of an article that tells you to click a link and read another post. It is the headlines that convince your readers to continue digging through your content.

Copywriting is your call to action, in whatever form that takes. 

The best way to be successful at copywriting is to hide it naturally within your content. 

Where Does SEO Come Into Play?

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is what helps your readers find their way onto your website. Setup your website with quality content that follows certain standards and you increase the chances of your audience finding you. 

There was a point in time that a website’s primary goal was to stuff as many keywords and links on their webpages as possible. Most of the links led to irrelevant or spam-filled websites. But doing this would cause their website to rise to the top of a search engine result page. 

There were few websites with any valuable information on them, and it was hard to find legitimate websites with reliable information. 

Google founders Sergey Brin and Lawrance Page saw this and realized people were not finding the quality content they deserved. In 1998, they published The Anatomy of Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search.

Soon after, search engines began to use algorithms to help them identify useful content and promote it. Website developers found they had to up their game if they wanted people to find their sites.

Since then, SEO remains a part of copywriting, but for your website to get pushed to the top of search engine results, it must meet certain quality standards.

Enter Content Writing. 

Copywriting vs. Content Writing

Since 1997, Google has redefined the way people use the internet. As algorithms improve, so must the content found on websites.

In a way, it is a lot like the experience you might have at a library. 

By using certain standards, the Dewey Decimal System allows library-goers to locate specific books by subject, author, or title. SEO does the same but on a much broader, more complex scale. 

Once you know where to look for your book, you inspect the cover. The front of the book jumps out and grabs your attention over all the others. The back of the book gives you a hook that makes you want more.

This is the book’s version of Copywriting. 

Then you get home and read the story, or content. 

It draws you in and you find that you can’t put it down. You want more. You read the excerpt about the author and the next day you find yourself at the library looking for more books by that writer.

Now you find yourself in that author’s “sales funnel.” This method is similar to SEO. Google acts as the Dewey decimal system of old and the book is the website that it leads you to.

How Can an Affiliate Program Help? 

As SEO algorithms improve, the line that divides copywriting and content writing gets thinner. It is no longer copywriting vs. content writing so much as it is copywriting AND content writing. 

One of the elements SEO algorithms look for are links to other websites with good, quality content. Backlinks.com gives you access to those links and pays you for it. 

We have two ways to earn: As a Publisher or an Advertiser. 

When you sign up as a publisher, you sell links to your website through the Backlinks brokerage. 

When you register as an advertiser, you use your website to sell access to the links provided by Publishers. 

If you have additional questions, please check out our FAQ’s for Link Buyers and FAQ’s for Link Sellers or use the comments below. 

 

writing blogs

Blogging for Business: The Do’s and Don’ts of Writing Content

Statistics show that about half of the people aged between 18 and 49 years rely on the internet to get daily news. These stats further show that 77% of internet users are avid blog readers.

Additionally, about 70% of potential clients prefer knowing more about a brand by reading an article other than seeing an ad. These stats prove that the more content you have, the more the traffic to your website, hence focus on writing blogs.

How Can You Increase Your Content?

Writing blogs as a content marketing strategy can be one of the most powerful and effective tools but let me stress this – when done correctly! Unfortunately, many people lack the motivation and excitement to produce powerful content.

If you fall under this category, there’s still hope to make a difference. Applying the following tips used by successful digital marketing influencers will help you out of your comfort zone. Soon, you’ll start creating content that will bring you traction, increase your leads, sales, and ROI.

  • Allocate more of your time to writing other than reading other blogs
  • Have strategic use for every blog post you write
  • Put to use what you learn; you’ll end up being a good leader
  • Set your standards and always challenge yourself to create engaging and useful content
  • Always create a positive relationship with your readers by offering solutions to their problems

The Do’s When Writing Blogs

Although there’s no specific formula for writing killer blogs, there’re several tips you can use to create authoritative content.

Do Identify Your Target Audience

Before you start creating content, make sure you recognize your target audience and what they are looking for. Carryout industry research and competitor analysis to help you make a well-informed decision about the needs of your audience. You can try using keyword research tools to help you understand what’s trending in your target industry.

Do Create a Head-Turning Title

The title of your blog determines whether your reader will read the rest of your blog or not. Make sure your headline sparks an interest that will lure the audience to read further to learn more about the topic.

If you want to write a good title, make sure it has the following qualities;

  • Eye-catching
  • Believable
  • Should be in Active voice
  • Easy to read
  • Accurate
  • Direct to the point

Do Have High-Quality Backlinks

Link building plays a great role in search engine optimization. Including quality links from authoritative sites increases your Google Page Rank. If you aren’t sure how to create quality links, you can always seek link services from a link building company.

Why It’s Important To Practice Quality Link Building

Knowledge of SEO and link building is important when you want to launch a solid content marketing campaign that will help increase your sales. By working with a link building agency, you get to enjoy the following benefits;

  • Get quality links than increase your blog’s visibility
  • Traffic increase from websites that are linked to you
  • Have high-quality links, hence, making your site be viewed as valuable
  • Your site gets indexed quicker in search results
  • Do Create a Hook That Catches Your Readers Attention

Hook Up Your Audience with the Introduction

The first sentence of your article determines whether the reader will continue reading or move on to something else. Make sure the sentence keeps your reader hooked and smoothly introduces your first point.

Do Post Frequently and Consistently

One way to grow your audience is ensuring you have new content regularly. Consider creating a content posting schedule and stick to it. That way, you will always have something new to your readers even if you have another job. Posting daily is recommended as you’ll be casting your net widely and attract a larger audience.

Do Provide Value

When writing blogs, make sure your content is valuable to the reader. Create content that is either answering a question or offering a solution to a certain problem. Remember that there’re tons of useless blogs out there and you don’t want to end up like them.

Blog Writing Don’ts

Blogging the right way can make your blog get more audience and increased sales. There are also several things that you can do and make you fail miserably as a blogger. Here are some blogging don’ts.

Don’t Write for Search Engines

Many people make the mistake of writing for the search engines forgetting about the audience that will read their content. Any potential client who visits your site will tell whether you’ve written to please Google and Bing or you have your reader’s interest at heart. If you have written for the former, all your audience will leave your website before converting.

Do Not Plagiarize

It’s acceptable to get ideas from other people’s blogs and creating better content than they have. What’s unacceptable is copying other people’s work and using it as your own. Plagiarizing can even get you in hot soup with the owner.

With so many bloggers out there, it’s only fair to try and build each other instead of bringing each other down. Always respect the work of others and understand that they put as much effort into growing their blogs as you do yours.

Do Not Spam Links

When creating links for your content, make sure you only include quality backlinks to avoid the penalty of creating too many low-quality links. You can avoid low-quality backlinks by using various link building styles. You can also consult with SEO link building services to help you come up with links that don’t look unnatural to the search engines.

Improve Your Blog Authority With Our Link Building Package

Now that you know the do’s and the don’ts of writing blogs, focus on utilizing those tips to increase your traffic, sales, and profits.

However, if you are like many bloggers, you may be having trouble coming up with quality backlinks for your content. Before you give up, consider trying our link building services and choose a link building package that meets your needs.

Don’t forget to check out our blog for more insight on SEO and link building.

social media marketing

Benefits of Social Media Marketing for Your Business

The digital age has pushed businesses into moving a lot of their marketing efforts to online platforms. Most of this takes place on social media. More than 90% of businesses say that they are using social media to market their companies and generate revenue. 

These high number of digital marketing users aren’t on purpose. Businesses have found out the power of targeting their audience for low-cost by using campaigns on social media.

Keep reading if you’re looking to grow and improve your business but haven’t considered building an online presence. Here are 10 benefits of using social media marketing for your business.

1. Promote Brand Awareness

One important half of business is actually building it- putting systems into place, getting your branding together, etc. The other important part is getting people to know and pay attention to you. If you haven’t done the second part then the first part becomes obsolete. 

Social media marketing will help you out with the second part. You can promote your brand to large numbers of people at one time and attract supporters. The more you make your audience aware of your brand, the more popular and familiar it becomes.

2. Engage With Audience

The internet has thinned the veil between big corporations and consumers. Nowadays, people are used to seeing and hearing their favorite brands interact with customers. This creates general trust and admiration from buyers.

You can use social media marketing as a means to engage with your audience to build genuine connections. This can be done through simple tasks, such as answering comments on your social media pages, asking poll questions or re-sharing people’s content that is relevant to your brand.

3. Gather Consumer Data

While you are engaging and connecting with your audience, there is a good chance you’ll begin to see various trends and behavioral patterns from buyers. This is because social media marketing is a great, affordable advertising tool for gathering information on your target audience without seeming too intrusive.

People will typically tell you what they like or don’t like through tweets and hashtags. They’ll share content that is, either, loveable or controversial. Either way, you’ll figure out how to get their attention.

Some social media platforms, such as Facebook and Instagram, even provide business accounts with inside analytics on how their audience is acting and responding. These user insights can help you to improve your marketing strategy for the future.

4. Spread Shareable Content

The online world is a content-driven environment. Businesses who produce quality content that is evergreen and shareable are usually the ones in the lead. This content is used as a vehicle to go out and bring people back to your company’s pages.

The whole point is to make shareable content that is relevant and valuable to your audience. The content will reach the eyes of more people the more times it is shared. 

Make sure you leave some sort of watermark or link on your published content so that people are able to find you as the original source. This is important because the internet moves so fast that it’s easy for creators to get lost in the sharing process.

5. Drive Traffic To Website

So you’ve probably built a website and now you’ll just wait for the visitors to start rolling in. Build it and they’ll come, right?

Well, not quite. 

You can speed up the process by using social media marketing to send people to your website or landing page. When you make a post, for instance, add a call-to-action (CTA) and a link for your followers. Give them clear and concise instructions.

All of your content should have a purpose. And when it comes to posts that are intended to drive traffic, everything should be a seamless process for leads. It would be beneficial to get in the habit of including links often and keeping them visible and easy to reach.

6. Provide Customer Service

Most customer complaints should be handled in private via email or phone. However, there will be times where an angry customer comes along to bash your business in the public eye. This is the perfect time for you to turn foes into fans.

Take these opportunities to provide exceptional customer service, even if it’s right in the comment section. This will build trust around your company’s reputation when it comes to treating your audience with respect.

7. Make Announcements

One of the great advantages of social media is that most people check it often. If you’ve built a solid following of your target audience, this is another great place to keep them updated.

It’s convenient to use social media marketing for certain announcements, such as if your business is having a sale or making changes to some policies. You can also answer any questions quickly.

8. Find Collaborations

Collaborating with other brands is a great way to increase your company’s reach and grow your audience. Social media is the perfect place to find other businesses that are willing to collaborate for the same purposes.

Once you’ve found a brand to collaborate with, consider running giveaways and contests. The customer participation from these events will help to get your name out quickly.

9. Research Competition

Besides being friendly with other brands, social media marketing can help you to keep an eye on what they’re up to as well. You’ll be able to research and study competition marketing efforts and dissect their influence.

This will to give you a competitive edge and keep you in the running to gaining a larger customer base.

10. Keep Marketing Budget Low

This last benefit may be one of the most important to businesses with smaller advertising budgets. Most of the social media marketing is free. 

You can build a loyal audience, spread brand awareness, drive traffic and generate sales without spending a penny. This is valuable if you are just starting out and want to build authority around your brand in an affordable way.

Ready To Use Social Media Marketing Successfully For Your Business?

There are many ways social media marketing can help promote and scale your business. If you strategy effectively, you can achieve this in a shortened amount of time.

One key that is important is eventually getting people back to your offers. If you’re looking for more assistance with turning your social media audience into leads, consider checking out this link for help.

guest posting

How Guest Posting Can Drastically Improve Your Website’s Ranking

Quick question: when was the last time you hit the “next page” button on Google?

Your answer is probably something like, “never.” Or maybe even, “there’s a next page button on Google?”

As a business owner, you already know the importance of ranking high on the SERPs. You’ve probably already even started a blog to draw traffic and catch keyword crawlers.

Blogging on your own site is to increase your website’s ranking, but if you want to make it to the top, it’s not enough.

Guest posting is a great way to boost your SEO and gain traffic to your own site.

Here’s how.

What Is Guest Posting?

First things first: what is guest posting?

In simplest terms, it’s when you write a blog on someone else’s website. You are blogging on their site as a guest.

You’ve probably been browsing a website and noticed a post that featured another company’s service or product. Some of these are reviews, but many are guest blogs written by that company.

Guest blogging has exploded in popularity the last several years because it’s such an effective way to grow your brand and get traffic to your website.

Here are a few of the ways it can help you.

Exposure to New Readers

How many regular readers does your blog have? “Not enough,” you’re probably muttering.

We all know how important a blog is, but if you don’t have any readers, it can seem like a lesson in futility.

So how can you get more readers? Sharing and resharing to social media can help attract readers from your existing network, but it’s still limited.

But let’s say that another blog has hundreds of daily readers. If you write a guest post on their site, those daily readers will see your post.

And if you include a link to your own website, there’s a good chance that some of those readers will follow you back to your own blog.

If you get a few guest posts on some high-traffic websites, you can gather readers to your own site in a hurry.

For example, Leo Wildrich, the founder of Buffer gathered one hundred thousand users in nine months through guest blogging.

Increased Brand Authority

As a business owner, you probably already know how important brand awareness is. In order for your business to be successful, people need to know it exists.

But it’s not enough for people to be aware of your brand. They have to trust it.

Blogs are a great way for you to offer rich, authoritative content. And when you pair that with the new exposure that guest blogging gives you, it’s even better.

Most readers might not become customers, but many of them will recognize you as someone who knows what they’re talking about–provided you do know what you’re talking about.

And as your brand authority grows, so will trust in your brand. And that leads to more sales.

Build Traffic to Landing Pages

One of the biggest advantages to guest posts is directing traffic back to your own site.

But if you just direct them to your homepage, you could be missing out on a lot of conversions.

If you’re smart about where you send your readers, though, you can see a huge boost.

Directing readers to a landing page can lead to more conversions than linking to a homepage or blog page.

We wouldn’t want to say that most internet users are lazy, but they appreciate it when you make things easier on them. The more pages they have to click through to give you their money, the less likely they are to pay you.

Linking a guest post to a relevant landing page is a great way to turn readers into customers.

Valuable Backlinks

And now, we have the meat of why so many people are interested in guest blogging: building backlinks.

When search engine crawlers go out into the internet to gather results, there are a number of factors that they look for.

One of the most important factors is site authority.

The great thing about the internet is that anyone can start their own website. But that doesn’t mean those sites offer valuable content.

To make sure that a site is trustworthy, search engines take a look at the site’s relationships with other websites–namely through linking.

If a website that Google trusts–let’s say Forbes.com–links to another website, Google sees that as a sign of the other site’s authority.

If you can get a wide variety of sites with high authority to link to your site, it can go a long way to boosting your own site’s authority.

And do you know what the best ways to build organic backlinks to your site is? You guessed it: guest posts.

The Trick To a Great Guest Post

Guest blogging can give your site a great boost. But if you want to make sure it’s effective, there’s one thing you have to keep in mind.

You have to create valuable content.

If your blog posts don’t offer something useful to your readers, no one will be interested in anything else you have to say.

We’re all inundated with ads and spam all day long. The last thing anyone wants is to read a guest post that’s just a long ad.

Avoid spammy content. Create something that readers actually want. If you can make it shareable, that’s even better.

So don’t just write a guest post thinking about how your business can benefit. Think of how you can benefit the reader as well.

Backlinks and More

Guest posting is a great way to build valuable backlinks to build your site’s authority.

But it’s not the only way. To learn more about SEO methods that can boost your site’s ranking, read this article on SEO skills.

content marketing tools

10 Essential Content Marketing Tools for the Savvy Digital Marketer

Content marketing can seem intimidating if you don’t know how to do it. Having a general knowledge of what marketing is and why you do it isn’t enough.

To really get your website noticed, you’ve got to market strategically. There are way too many other websites out there vying for the same attention.

So how can you market successfully without spending all your time doing it? Keep reading and we’ll show you how. Here are ten content marketing tools you’ll wish you’d never lived without.

1. BuzzSumo

Social media is so important when it comes to successful marketing. But how do you know if the content you’re sharing is helping you or not?

That’s where BuzzSumo comes in. It shows you what’s hot and what’s not on social media. Once you know that, you’ll know what content to create a share.

Simply enter a topic you’re considering posting about and see how it pans out in the results.

2. Google Analytics

Google Analytics is totally free, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t be taking advantage of it. This tool provides important information about your audience.

Who’s visiting your site, and from where? Google Analytics will tell you. Use this information to plan where your blog will go from here.

Once you know who your main audience is you can cater to them directly.

3. Inforg.am

If you ever need infographics, Inforg.am is the place to go. You’ll have what you need in no time at all and you’ll be able to share or embed it.

Infographics help your audience visualize information. In some cases they’ll communicate information better than words, so don’t pass this up!

4. SimpleReach

Would you like to know how your content is doing across multiple sites at once? Simplereach allows you to do that, and more.

Whether you’ve used blog posts, videos, or something else, SimpleReach will show you how they’re doing.

Conveniently gathered to one place, you’ll have all the analytics you need without using multiple tools. And SimpleReach goes beyond providing data–it gives you data that you’ll actually use.

5. Google Search Console

Google Search Console (also known as Google Webmasters Tools) is another free tool provided by Google. It helps you see what keywords you rank for and how far up or down the ranks your site appears.

You may add keywords to each post, but that doesn’t mean that Google chooses to show your site instead of someone else’s. Google Search Console helps you see how well you’re doing.

This tool can be incredibly helpful if it’s used correctly. You’ll find out what keywords people are searching for, which will help you create content that will get your site seen.

6. Quora

This forum-based website may not seem like a marketing tool at first glance but think again. Quora’s a gold mine when it comes to finding out what people want to know.

Choose some keywords you want to use, then run a search on Quora. You’ll quickly see what people want to know about those keywords. In other words, you were just handed a whole bunch of topic ideas.

7. Animoto

Do you post videos to a Facebook page? If you don’t, you definitely should. Video is powerful, even if viewers aren’t using sound.

However, if you aren’t using text to show viewers what’s going on or being said in your video, you may be missing out on a lot of traffic. Facebook scrollers often watch videos without sound. Will viewers get the point of your video with the sound off?

To help remedy this issue, Animoto allows you to add text overlays. Those overlays allow viewers to fully engage with your videos, even if their surroundings require them to watch without sound.

8. Sumo

Are you looking to build your email subscription list? Then Sumo is the tool for you.

You’ll love its Welcome Mat feature. This pop-up will help you gather email addresses and grow your subscriber list in no time.

Beyond that, Sumo also helps you create social-sharing buttons, which are ideal for encouraging viewers to share your content.

9. Hemingway App

The content you post has to be easy to understand. Most people don’t spend a lot of time on a post or website, so your posts need to be clear.

Hemingway App helps you see where your content can improve. It points out passages that are too complicated, lets you know if you’re too passive, and more.

If you’re looking to say what you need to say in a better way, try Hemingway App. You’ll never go without it again.

10. Biteable

If you need help creating simple video content, you need to check out Biteable. With this tool, you can skip hiring actors, editors, a film team, and everything else.

Imagery, characters, illustrations, and animations are yours to create and use. Simply drag and drop as you create your storyboard. There’s no simpler way to bring your ideas to life.

Try These Content Marketing Tools Today

These ten content marketing tools exist to make your life easier, so what are you waiting for? Try one, or all of them, today.

Great marketing is half the battle when it comes to getting traffic. Don’t do things the hard way and try to figure it out all on your own. As you use these apps, you’ll continually learn marketing strategies you’ll use now and in years to come.

One of the best ways to get your site noticed is through SEO, and that’s what we specialize in. Schedule a free SEO consultation with us today to see how you’re doing.

keyword search volume

The Truth About Keyword Search Volume Will Surprise You

Are you using keyword search volume as part of your SEO strategy? You should be. However, there are a lot of misconceptions out there about Google’s keyword search volume. In this guide, we’ll separate the truth from the myths.

Search volume is among the most important measures for SEO tactics, and it’s one of the most commonly used, too. Some businesses build their concept around a single Google search term and have found a lot of success that way.

However, new keyword research tools have recently entered the market to meet this demand. You might notice that different search volumes crop up, depending on what tools you use. And, most importantly, those tools often show totally different numbers from Google Keyword Planner.

Are these tools accurate? What other information might you be missing? We’ll break it all down right here – keep reading to learn more.

What is Keyword Search Volume?

Keyword search volume measures how frequently people search for a given keyword. When you find a keyword that more people are searching for, you’ll want to target content to that term, since that makes it more likely that those searchers will find your site.

How Keyword Tools Get Search Volume Data

When you’re trying to figure out what keywords to rank for, keyword search tools become your best friend. But where do they get their information from – and how do you know it’s accurate?

Most of these tools use the above-mentioned Google Keyword Planner to get their data. They might either pull information from that service directly or use other tools that scrape and re-sell the data.

With every tool using the same source, how come different tools will show different search volumes? And how is it possible that their results don’t match Google’s when that’s where they get the information from?

First, you’ll need to know where Google gets its numbers from. The Google Keyword Planner number is actually a rounded yearly average, which gets recalculated each month.

As a search term decreases in popularity, the annual average will gradually start to go down, month by month. Any keyword search tool using Google Keyword Planner to get its numbers will need to update its own numbers each month to give you more accurate data, coming from Google.

However, these tools often have millions or billions of keywords in their databases, so these frequent updates become very difficult. That’s why each search tool has differing numbers – they don’t update the numbers as frequently as they’d need to for the results to be accurate according to Google. It’s just too much work for too many keywords.

Is the Adwords Search Volume Accurate?

If your keyword tool showed the same numbers that Google Adwords did, you’d probably be satisfied with that. However, many industry professionals now question the data coming from Google, too.

How does Google put together its numbers, anyway? Let’s take a closer look.

Annual Average

Google’s annual average is an interesting piece of the keyword puzzle.

For example, take a seasonal keyword like “Halloween.” Google will likely show a very high search volume for the term. However, if you look closely, you’ll see that in the annual trends the search volume for most of the year is low. But as October approaches, the search volume will peak.

With so many variables, how useful can an annual average really be? This is a pretty extreme example, but it shows a common problem that can through Google’s data off. Few search queries have a search volume that stays consistent throughout the year. The annual average can hide numbers that vary greatly from month to month.

The annual average isn’t just an average – it’s also rounded off into buckets. This throws the average numbers off even further.

Variant Search Terms

As you work keyword optimization into your SEO strategy, you’ll quickly become aware of the importance of variant search terms. “Search engine optimization” and “search engine optimization” are close variants of the same term, but they’re recognizably different. One is likely typed by an American, while the other might come from someone in England.

However, if you type these two terms into Google Keyword Planner, it will combine them into one keyword. There’s surely a difference in popularity between the two terms, but you won’t be able to find out what it is using Google. This is important if you’re trying to rank organically since there might be a big difference between the terms.

If someone is advertising using Adwords, they won’t care about the differences in terms, since their ad will show on top no matter what. Google Keyword Planner makes life easy for advertisers, but not for people trying to rank organically.

Using Google Keyword Planner Strategically

Although the keyword volume from Google isn’t quite accurate, many people still rely on it. However, there are other hidden tools you can use to boost your SEO game.

A different tool, called Performance Forecasts, might help you out. To find it, put some search queries in your plan, then click on “Review plan.” From there, you can get “impressions” data for your keywords, which gives you information for the close variants that you couldn’t see before, too. The impressions numbers will differ from the search volume numbers, giving you a clearer picture.

Google is gradually getting better at seeing and interpreting the different search queries that people enter. This is increasing the value of long-tail keywords, and rendering single words less relevant.

This means that no matter what Google Keyword Planner shows, you should work on creating an SEO strategy based on topics, not individual search terms.

Ready to Refine Your SEO Strategy?

Keyword search volume remains an important part of SEO. However, it’s more important than ever to understand how to use the numbers you see in order to build a winning strategy. Even Google doesn’t tell the whole story.

In addition to keywords, you’ll also need backlinks to drive traffic to your site. Learn more about how to get links here.

mobile friendly site

Why Your Mobile-Friendly Website May Be Hurting Your SEO

In just the last couple of years, mobile browsing definitely surpassed desktop browsing for the first time. As mobile usage continues to grow, it’s important that you have a mobile-friendly website. However, if you’re not employing the best tactics for displaying information, loading ads, or organizing your pages, you could be losing out.

Here are five reasons why your mobile-responsive site could be getting the way of your success.

1. Not Enough Content

When you prioritize mobile-optimized content on your site, you’re often accounting for a smaller screen size. You need to be ruthless with editing when you’re putting together content for a mobile-ready website. However, when your customers open your site up on their desktops, they might not find there’s enough content to capture their interest.

This is a good reason why you should have a blog on your site. When people open up a blog link, they expect to be reading for a while. No matter how much scrolling they have to do on their phone they’re not unaware that they’re reading on a phone.

Put lots of content on your site, but when you find it will be too much for the average mobile browsing session, direct users to a blog post.

You need to offer lots of content, including images and videos on your site. Just because your visitors are viewing you on a small device doesn’t mean you should send them a small amount of content.

As video will account for more than 80% of all traffic in the next few years, visitors are going to want to see video content. Give them what they want and let them deal with the connection that they do or don’t have.

2. Scrambled Text and Images

When you design solely for mobile, you design for a small, narrow, and tall screen. If you don’t have the right code in place to reshape your site when it gets displayed on a desktop, the elements could show up strangely in a bigger window.

When the text and images on your site are scrambled, you’re going to present something messy to your audience. It’s important for them to be able to read and understand your content and when it displays awkwardly, they’re incentivized to move on.

It’s hard enough to get people to your site. If you present them with something they can’t decipher or is hard to read, they’ll find another site where it’s easier to get what they need.

Also, if you’re telling a narrative with images or videos and your images are out of order, you’re doing a disservice to that narrative. Maintain clarity of data and information on your website by maintaining and pruning both your mobile and desktop sites. Otherwise, you’ll be dealing with a high bounce rate and a low SEO ranking.

3. Using Headers Wrong

With the latest and most up to date algorithms from search engines, headers and page organization can now be accounted for as part of the ranking. If you’re using headers incorrectly or you aren’t organizing your page well, you’re going to suffer when it comes to SEO.

Using HTML headings makes sense in your source code and using the different types of headings can ensure that your site looks well organized. Search engine indexing tools, or web crawlers, will take into account the types of headers you use and how many times you use them per your word count.

Using more than one H1 tag as the heading for your page can make your site look unnecessarily large.

Stick with more H2 and H3 headings so that you can give your readers a hierarchical view of your information. If your site is on a mobile device, having multiple H1 headings can crowd your page and make it hard to read and difficult to load.

4. Your Site is Too Slow

The speed of your site’s load time is a ranking factor that Google and other search engines take seriously. As they’ve rated it, more than half of users will abandon a site if it takes more than three seconds to load. That means if you’ve got a mobile-friendly design that’s jumping through hoops to either load on phones or translate to desktops, you’re going to lose users.

You need your code to be tight and efficient, with rendering times sitting somewhere under one second long.

Whether you’re designing for mobile or for desktops, you need to keep the code and the media on your site nice and clean.

5. Ads Are in The Way

Recently, search engines released reports announcing that their terms for what they considered a page that was easily accessible. When a user is forced to transition between their click on a site to closing an ad window, then back to the site, that’s considered an obstruction. Sites that use these kinds of interstitial ads are considered not easily accessible.

If your mobile site has popups and interstitial ads that cover the screen, you should rethink your design. Even if you’ve got a strong CTA, that could be getting in the way of ranking as high as your site deserves.

There are still some interstitial popups that are considered okay. Ones that are legally required, like for age verification or privacy notices are still kosher. If you have a banner that takes up less than 20% of the screen size at any point, that’s considered okay with search engines as well.

A Mobile-Friendly Website Needs To Be Tested

You should never put out a digital product without going through rigorous testing. That goes for your mobile-friendly website as much as anything else. If you haven’t tested your site on every major device and every popular screen size, you should hold off your next major update.

Once you’ve optimized your design, follow our guide to rolling out a strong PR campaign to attract an audience.

disavow links

How to Disavow Links From Your Backlink Profile

The importance of backlinks to good search engine optimization (SEO) never changes even as search engines update their algorithms. The more links to a specific page on your website, the better that page ranks.

Some professionals estimate that backlinks account for almost 25% of Google’s ranking algorithm.

Be aware. Not all backlinks to your website will boost your rankings. Some may even hurt your SEO.

Read on to learn why you may need to disavow links to your web page and how to do it correctly.

Why Do I Need to Disavow Links?

Search engines penalize websites when they think the page owner tries to drive traffic to their site dishonestly. Google and Bing use penalties to encourage website owners to stay true to their brand and be honest with their marketing attempts.

When spammy or off-topic websites link back to your web page without your knowledge, it still hurts your ranking. Both Bing and Google offer specific tools to get rid of these bad backlinks.

Disavow these low-quality backlinks to improve your inbound link rankings. Disavowing the links blocks them from the search engines’ list when evaluating your web page. This helps regain the search engines’ trust in a similar way to how good backlinks build it.

Sometimes you may even discover instances where competitors or others have referred to your business in a negative light. Disavowing links from these negative articles also increases your overall SEO.

How to Disavow Links from Google

You do not need to be a computer wizard to disavow links from your backlink profile on Google, but it does take some time. Follow these 4 easy steps to delete harmful links back to your web page.

1. Identify All Backlinks to Your Page

The first thing you need to do is identify what backlinks Google connects to your profile. Do this by logging into your Google Webmaster Tools.

Choose “Search Traffic” and then “Links to Your Site.” Download both the latest links and sample links. Combine all your backlinks into a navigable spreadsheet in whatever program you feel most comfortable using.

2. Decide What Links to Disavow

Once you organize your backlinks, go through every one and decide whether or not to keep or disavow the link. Disavow links if:

  • They look as though the user included it for SEO purposes only.
  • There is no chance a client would ever find you through the link.
  • They come from a press release or advertisement where someone paid for the advertising link.

You should disavow any other links that do not seem to naturally connect to your web page, products, or services.

3. Make a Disavow File

When making a disavow file, it is better to list links so the disavow occurs on the domain level and not just the specific backlink. You cannot be sure how many other places the link may occur on the offending website. It is safer to simply disavow the entire domain from linking back to your page.

A disavow file must only include the basic URL link without the beginning “http://www.”. You can remove these within your spreadsheet prior to compiling your disavow file. Simply use the find and replace feature to locate all the URLs with “http://www.” and replace them with “domain:”.

The disavow file must be in .txt file formats 7-bit ASCII or UTF-8. You can copy your “domain:examplelink.com” from your spreadsheet and paste it as plain text in the .txt file. Feel free to use any other way you feel comfortable making a text file so long as it results in one of the correct two formats.

4. Submit the Disavow File

Finally, login to your Google Webmaster Tools again. Use the Google Disavow Links Tool to submit your file disavow file.

Select your website from the drop-down menu. Click the “Disavow Links” button then select “Disavow Links” again. It will then give you an option to choose a file. Upload the .txt file you created with the “domain:examplelink.com” links.

Common Errors You May Encounter

The moment you upload your disavow file, Google will apply the directives to each link you selected. An error message will pop up if you do not complete the disavow file correctly.

The error message should list the parts you need to change, and here are some common mistakes made when uploading to the Google disavow links tool:

  • Do NOT include “http://www.” when listing a domain such as “http://www.error.com”. Only include “error.com”.
  • Do NOT include attached ports with colons on your domain names. If you find a domain on your collected list that looks like “domain:example.com:1010”, simply remove the attached “:1010”.
  • Do NOT upload backlinks from domains with atypical characters like fractions, accented letters, or symbols. The domains never end up resolving.

Other errors may occur, so be sure to thoroughly read the error message.

How to Disavow Links from Bing

Businesses marketing to wealthy Americans between the ages of 45 and 54 should already know that this demographic uses Bing for online searches much more often than Google. In fact, all businesses benefit from keeping Bing happy as well since it generates more than 12 billion search requests every month. Follow the below steps to use Bing’s Disavow Links Tool.

The biggest difference between Bing and Google’s disavow tools is that Bing does not require a .txt file. You just manually enter the domain or the URL for each link.

  1. Access your Bing Webmaster Tool page.
  2. Choose “Configure My Site.”
  3. Pick “Disavow Links.”
  4. Use the drop-down menu to select from disavowing a domain URL, directory, or a page.
  5. Enter the URL of the page and choose “Disavow.”
  6. Check the list underneath the tool that the link added along with the date you disavowed it.
  7. To remove an entry and allow the link, choose the checkbox next to the URL and click “Delete.”

Build Better Backlinks

Removing bad backlinks should immediately improve your SEO. However, you need to do more than just disavow links. You also need to build better backlinks.

Building great backlinks takes time and energy that you may not have. But they still remain a vital part of your business’s online marketing strategy.

Partnering up with a dedicated backlink brokerage firm like us can help!

website building tips

11 Website Building Tips to Use in 2018

Websites define who and what a company is now more than ever. From social media campaigns, email newsletters, and blogs, consumers connect with their favorite brands through online interaction.

Meeting consumers online, then, is the best way to gain a solid following and increase sales. So, if you’re not online or don’t have a solid website, you could be in trouble. You’ll need a few solid website building tips to get you on your feet.

If you’re looking for tips and tricks for building a great website in 2018, you’re in luck! In this brief article, we’ll go over 11 tips for website building that will be sure to improve your online reputation and status this year.

Website Building Tips for Long-Term Success

1. Settle on a Platform

When you set out to build a website, you need to determine who will be in control of the design and who will be in charge of updates. This person (or people) will make a choice about which platform your website is built on.

The platform (such as WordPress or Wix) has its own set of rules for updating files and making changes. Some platforms come with themes or options with upgraded elements for personalized design.

First, you have to choose a platform. Do a quick Google search on top platforms or discuss your options with partners or other professionals.

2. Choose a User-Friendly Design

If a visitor to your website is unable to locate what they’re looking for within seconds, they’re likely to move on. You have moments to grab visitors’ attention and guide them towards sales.

The navigational bar is a huge help. Here, the visitor can find links to pages discussing services and products and others for contacting or purchasing.

Set your website up in a way that puts the user’s ease as the priority. Keep pages organized and move leads towards the hot spots they came for.

3. Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly Through Responsive Design

Mobile users make up an overwhelming percentage of eCommerce shoppers. Regardless if your product is an online item or not, people are using the internet for information first and foremost.

This means that it’s imperative to develop a mobile-friendly website to reach customers. Many platforms and themes come with an automatic responsive design built in that will adapt from desktop to mobile viewing.

With more and more people catching onto the mobile browsing/shopping trend, businesses stand to lose countless potential customers.

4. Write Resourceful Content

One of the ways Google indexes content is based on how useful the information is to visitors. The crawlers don’t want to pick up on dead links, duplicate pages, and run-on copy with nothing to reveal.

This means to show up higher on search results, your content should serve a distinct purpose. Pages should explain products and services more thoroughly or direct them to an action button.

Blog articles should be relevant to your market and as informative as you can make them.

5. Optimize Copy with SEO Tactics

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a tactic to improve your pages to rank higher on search results. Apart from useful content, web designers can implement keywords and phrases to rank higher.

By including words and phrases that people are searching for, you can appear more often in Google results. There’s more to SEO than that, so make sure to perform your own search on optimizing tactics.

6. Publish Regular Content on Your Blog

The blog is a place to host your own articles and guest articles, which visitors can follow links back to off article shares on social media. It’s a great way to grab people’s attention and direct them back to your website for a sale.

Posting regular content shows Google that you offer resources often. A blog is an essential piece of any professional website today and an excellent way to stay relevant in your market.

7. Use Backlinks to Gain Authority and Increase Ranking

Another great way to rank higher and improve your reputation is through backlinks. When a different website hosts a link back to your website, it has a positive effect (as long as the site is credible) on ranking.

Just make sure their website is relevant to your market.

Consider your professional network; are there any companies willing to host a backlink? Hint: backlinks in content (versus sidebar links) work best.

8. Build Professional Relationships

If you don’t have any professional establishments that could link back to your site, it’s time to build relationships. Professional outings or meetups are great ways to get face-to-face with other like-minded individuals.

Use LinkedIn and other social media to reach out to businesses and make connections from afar. From there, you can work on mutual shares and links to improve ranking and credibility for both sites.

Alternatively, you could consider purchasing backlinks to improve your ranking.

9. Pay Attention to the Competition

Many business owners shy away from the competition’s tactics and work tirelessly to be original and creative. However, you can learn a lot from paying attention to the competition.

Monitoring how well their tactics work to gain attention and rank well will help you figure out how to improve your own. You can mirror their efforts or learn to avoid their pitfalls. Don’t be afraid to observe, especially if it can enhance your business.

10. Audit Your Website on Occasion

A quick Google search will bring up a range of free website auditing tools. From verifying your loading speeds to examining SEO tactics, these tools provide an outside perspective on your website.

Through this, and through A/B testing on landing pages, you can easily determine what is or isn’t working.

11. Implement Video Without Compromising Loading Speeds

Video is a major force right now in online marketing. Connecting with new audiences means getting in on the trend as soon as possible. However, you have to be careful not to slow down your loading speed in the process.

If it takes more than a few seconds to load a single web page, you’re likely to lose the majority of your visitors. Invest in a couple of high-quality videos for your homepage, but don’t overstuff video throughout the website.

More Insider Advice from Backlinks

There are more website building tips out there, but these provide a solid enough foundation for your company to thrive online. Implement many (or all) of these tips to attract and retain loyal customers for long-term success!

Looking for more tips and tricks from the professionals?

Head on over to the Backlinks blog now to learn more about improving your ranking and increasing your returns online!