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Measuring time

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Does your site measure up?

It’s unfortunate that sometimes we have to turn away SEO clients simply because their websites aren’t up to scratch. It’s hard to tell a client with money in his hand that the website he has paid out good money for just can’t be optimised.

There are many reasons a website isn’t suitable – here are just a few:

IT’S ON A FREEBIE DOMAIN

Whether it’s a free wordpress blog or a free domain on your hosting company’s space, it’s really not worth optimising on a freebie domain. With domain names costing very little these days, take the time to buy either a .com or a .co.uk that suits your company – it’s worth it in the long run.

IT’S AN ALL FLASH SITE

Although there are ways around it, Google still doesn’t like all Flash sites, and we really advise against getting them designed. With web design standards so high now it’s possible to achieve a great looking site without having to hide everything in a Flash movie.

TITLE TAGS CAN’T BE CHANGED ON EACH PAGE

It’s a fact that you can’t optimise one page of a site for every phrase – in fact we recommend a handful of phrases per page. This means that if you want to optimise for 10 phrases, you’re going to need at least 5 pages that can have the title and META tags changed. Many CMSs don’t offer this option, and sadly we have to turn away these clients.

THE SITE IS DESIGNED ALL IN GRAPHICS

Yes, even in 2011 we still see sites designed in Microsoft Pulisher or other programs that render the site all in graphics. Google can’t read them, we can’t help you – sorry!

YOU’RE NOT WILLING TO CHANGE YOUR COPY

In some cases your copy will be fine, but in others we’ll ask you to change some of it, make it more keyword rich, add H1 tags etc – if you won’t or can’t do this then we can’t do our job properly and have to say no.

YOU WANT INSTANT RESULTS ON ULTRA COMPETITIVE KEYPHRASES

Although we have achieved great listings in good timeframes for our clients, we can’t guarantee that you’ll be at #1 in Google for the keyphrases of your choice within a week – no-one can. In fact Google themselves even say not to employ SEO consultants who say they can. We’re ethical and moral and won’t promise something we can’t achieve, so we’d have to turn down the job.

That all sounds a little negative doesn’t it? But rest assured that the majority of people who come to us are taken on board with a big smile – once we’ve checked the above points and made sure we can do the best job for them.

Not sure if your site meets our criteria? Drop us a line and ask :)

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Google Chrome

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Here at Marketing By Web we’re often asked: “Which is better? SEO or Google Adwords?” and the truthful answer is that it depends on your website.
But that’s a whole other blog post :)

For the majority of websites, SEO and Adwords working in tandem is a great strategy.

Why?

Well, let’s look at the pros and cons of SEO and Adwords separately first.

SEO (search engine optimisation)

Pros:

  • can be low cost, whether you DIY or employ an SEO consultant
  • some people use organic listings more than they click on Adwords
  • most sites can be optimised with a little work
  • once listings are achieved, a little work every month can keep those listings

Cons:

  • it takes time to see your listings rise, especially if you’re in a competitive industry
  • short tail keyphrases are usually very competitive
  • there’s no real way to know if you’ve chosen the correct keyphrases until you get the listings you want

Adwords

Pros:

  • listings are alive almost immediately
  • you can use Adwords to test the efficacy of keywords before embarking on SEO
  • you can control your budget
  • Google will give you advice on landing pages
  • you only pay for each visitor you get

Cons:

  • for very competitive keyphrases it can be expensive
  • if your ads aren’t written properly then your ‘quality’ score could be low
  • if your site isn’t well designed, your ads may not show often

So, by combining SEO and Adwords, you can get the pros of each (quick listings, testing, organic listings, good results), and use each of them to negate the pros. Let’s see some examples:

  • SEO takes time, but Adwords are almost instant – so you can use Adwords to get quick wins, and use SEO for the longer term
  • With SEO you may not know if you’re choosing the correct phrases – Adwords helps you to refine this
  • If you have a low quality score in Adwords, and you ads don’t show oftem the work you do on your site will benefit your SEO

We understand that in some cases it’s an either/or situation, but in our opinion, SEO and Adwords work hand in hand to provide all round search engine promotion for your site.

Are you using both SEO AND Adwords to promote your website?

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scared

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The first thing people do when they realise that their Google positions have dropped, is panic. Checking frantically and only seeing themselves on the 3rd page or lower while their competitors are living it up on the front page, the horror sets in and with it a kind of mist descends.

“What did I do wrong? Let me change this, and this, and this, ooh I must need more links, and I’d better write some articles.” It’s easy to start running round like a headless chicken and doing everything to fix the problem.

STOP!

Firstly, stop panicking. The drop may not be permanent, and there will be a way to fix it in most cases.

So, where should we start?

1) Have you changed anything recently? Updated the site, changed any title or meta tags, added extra content, deleted pages, moved things around? This is one of the reasons that we recommend only changing one thing at a time on a site an then waiting to see what results it has.

2) Have you done anything wrong? Bought dodgy linking packages, spammed on forums, overstuffed your keyphrases? There are often things that may seem like a good idea at the time, but turn out to be bad for your site. Buying 10,000 links for $50 may seem like a shortcut to great Google listings, but it isn’t and can get you penalised.

3) Is it a newish domain? Often a few months after a site launches it gets put into what is known as the Google ‘sandbox’ where it drops considerably for a while before hopefully climbing its way back up the rankings. The only thing you can do here is wait it out, and carry on building great content.

4) Have you changed the way the pages are laid out? Sometimes the phrase ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is the right one – completely changing the layout of your site can have a negative effect and can see you lose positions for a while. We’re not saying your site has to stay the same forever, but it does help if the navigation and page names stay in the right place.

The most important thing is to remember that as long as what you’ve done is in the realms of white hat optimisation, and you’ve not enlisted and black hat spammy techniques, the chances are that your Google positions are salveageable.

Just don’t panic, think through what’s changed recently and act accordingly, undoing the changes if necessary. Above all, don’t have a knee jerk reaction – think it through logically and work through step by step to fix what you can.

If your Google positions have dropped and you really don’t know why, drop us a line to claire@marketingbyweb.co.uk and we’ll do our best to help.

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licence google adwords

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You may or may not know that Google offers a certification program for people looking to manage Adwords accounts. Because, while it is true that anyone can learn to manage an Adwords account, Google wants its users to know that the people Google themselves recommend (such as us!) have gone through some sort of vetting process and met the Google Grade.

If you’re managing your own account, then it’s worth going through the accreditation anyway, as you’ll pick up some useful hints and tips form the training, but it’s not absolutely necessary of course.

However, we believe that if you’re going to pay someone else to manage your account, then you deserve the peace of mind that comes from knowing they’ve passed the tests that Google sets and earned their stripes.

There are two qualifications to look for:

  • Individual qualification – this is for individuals who have studied and passed a basic exam and one advanced exam. If you’re a marketing manager, or a small business owner, and want to manage one or two accounts, this could be perfect for you.
  • Company qualification – by attaining this status, you will not only be eligible to be featured in the Google Partner Search, but you will also be able to offer money off coupons, get extra marketing support and help from Google and gain extra training. Thisis perfect if you run an agency or manage multiple accounts.

So what does it entail?

Your Google Certified Adwords Manager will have undergone extensive training from Google in account setup and management, verifying click fraud, designing and optimising landing pages, writing and constructing ads to get the best results, and more. They’ll know how to get the best quality score, how to minimise useless clicks, how to ensure you don’t go over your budget yet still remain advertising, among other things.

He or she will be able to run your account like a well oiled machine from the get go, without the learning curve anyone new will have to endure.

But above all not only has he or she undertaken this training, they’ve passed Google set exams to PROVE that they know what they’re doing. And to keep the knowledge up to date, the advanced exams have to be redone yearly – so you’re safe in the knowledge that your Adwords Manager isn’t lagging behind in knowledge.

We’re great believers in allowing people to go their own way, and our blog gives lots of help on this, but if you do decide to go down the Adwords Manager route, then we’d highly advise looking for this badge on the site of the person or agency you choose.

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First of all, because it gives excellent results. You can attract a great number of visitors to your site, hence significantly boost your traffic, which is something you have been probably struggling to do in a while now. Secondly, because you can manage your Pay Per Click campaigns the right way and not spend an entire fortune on your smart strategy. Below you will find a series of useful information on Pay Per Click advertising campaigns. We invite you to get in touch with us – we have got the means, the tools, the experience, and the right team of people to handle your every PPC need.

 

Definition Of Pay Per Click Marketing Campaigns    

 

PPC marketing campaigns refer to the use of highly popular search engines such as Google or Yahoo! and their search results listings for the best of your business. The catch is each and every one of these listings need to show up as natural as the regular search results that are not paid for. Auctions are used to sell these ads and interested individuals need to place their bids. Bids need to be strictly related to the sum one is willing to pay for an ad click. Higher bids have a greater chance to rank higher – even number one – in search engine sponsored search results. However, the costs can go too high for some businesses. It is easy to get caught up in a crazy bid and end up spending a great deal of money on a PPC campaign. We are talking about thousands of dollars or more, at times.

 

Choose The Right PPC Campaigns

 

Don’t let your ego stand in the way of your success. Also keep in mind these PPC costs are constantly on the rise due to the inflation. The respective inflation is triggered by the previously mentioned type of unhealthy bidding and also by the online search engines that need to use even more severe restrictions in terms of quality when it comes to keywords.

Keep in mind every time someone clicks on your PPC listing, they will automatically be directed to your own website, and you will be immediately charged for the respective bid. Do the math and try to figure out which are the most useful types of buds you should be placing. Also prepare a PPC budget and work towards sticking to it.

 

Prepare for some huge traffic to be coming your way. Gain the top placement you need and get ready to get in touch with your prospects. Individuals will need to search for the keywords you have chosen and placed bids on, and in case your PPC ad is a well-written, efficient one, chances are click will be no issue and the automated activation of the ad will occur. The Marketing By Web team can provide you with the most intelligent approached to your PPC advertising campaign. We have the experience, the skills, and the training to do it, no matter what field you might be working in.  

 

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