Last post, we discussed Google’s PageRank metric and why it is a valuable tool for small business owners. By now you probably know your site’s score, and you may be wondering how you can increase your PageRank. While it might be tempting to post your homepage on as many sites as you can find, don’t. Posting your site to “bad” pages such as link farms can actually lower your score. Instead, we’ve collected a few tips to help you boost your rank on search engines:
- ABO – Always Be Optimizing. SEO goes hand in hand with PageRank. It is important that your site offers content that is relevant to the types of search terms potential clients are likely to use. Ask yourself, “If I wanted my products, what would I search for?” and add these keywords to your content. Keeping your site current with optimized, regular blog posts can also help boost your search results rank.
- Make sure all Title, Header and Meta Tags are optimized. If you are unsure about how to do this, find or hire someone to help you.
- Get links to your business on as many high PageRank web pages as possible to increase the number of inbound links to your site. For example, submit your business to quality online directories. Check the PageRank for the site’s homepage before submitting to ensure that it is a quality site. For example, many trade publications or regional newspapers offer business directories; these sites typically have PageRanks of 6 or higher.
By increasing your PageRank, you can help to move your business higher up on search engine results – pure gold for any small business owner. What techniques have helped you boost your PageRank?
Photo Credit: danardvincente
In today’s fast paced online revolution, it’s easy to be left behind. Traditional marketing is becoming less and less effective. Popular new tools and websites hit the mainstream each day, causing further fragmentation of marketing channels. Embracing Web 2.0 tools and social media networks is now crucial for all businesses. But with most small business owners juggling multiple hats from management to marketing, it’s difficult to keep pace.
Why should you get on board with this marketing revolution? A recent study from McKinsey, “How Web 2.0 is helping companies compete” identified that companies that embrace the latest 2.0 tools are seeing substantial results. In fact, companies that integrated the use of six or more 2.0 technologies into employees’ daily activities were significantly more likely to increase market share than companies that had minimal Web 2.0 use. These technologies are here to stay, and the businesses that embrace them with intensive use are seeing the greatest benefits.
Knowing all of this, how do you begin? The first step is to assess where your business stands. We’ve created a short, 10 question survey to help business owners evaluate their marketing strategies. It assesses all aspects of your marketing strategy – optimization, social media, customer experience, results analysis and more. Why not see how your business measures up? Are you marketing fit? Take the Market Smarter ‘Get Fit’ Challenge and find out now.
When assessing the performance of your company’s homepage, one important metric to keep an eye on is your PageRank score. PageRank is a metric designed by Google co-founder Larry Page during his time at Stanford to help analyze the quality and importance of a web page. A site’s PageRank is scaled on a score of 0 (low) to 10 (high) and is primarily calculated by applying an algorithm that assesses factors such as the amount and quality of links back to that particular page, content and credibility. The premise is that the more relevant and helpful a site’s content, the more people will link back to that site. PageRank also takes into account the quality of the backlinking site. A site with a high score will have a greater effect on raising your site’s PageRank score because important sites are generally more likely to link to other sites with relevant content.
Why should you care? PageRank is a key component for determining where a site appears in Google’s organic search results. Sites with higher scores will appear further up on the results page than lower ranked competitors. This is essentially free advertising for your business – only better, as organic search results are more trusted than paid advertisements. By monitoring the PageRank scores for your homepage and your competitors’ sites, you can help to ensure that your business is the first one people see when searching for relevant content.
So, what’s your PageRank? Visit a free PageRank checker to find out: http://www.prchecker.info/ or download the Google toolbar here.
Photo Credit: Aray Chen
Looking to get some free marketing advice? Download our free Market Smarter E-book.
If you’re going to market your company, you need the right tools. Whether you choose to hire outside help or to do it yourself, using the right technology can make the difference in achieving your marketing goals.
One of our favorite inbound marketing platforms for businesses is HubSpot. A pioneer of the inbound marketing revolution, they recognized that interruption is a thing of the past and founded their company on permission based marketing strategies. They offer online marketing and web analytics software designed to help businesses get found online, convert visitors into actual leads, analyze traffic and assess marketing activities so that businesses are most efficient. Some product features include:
- Tools to create and manage a landing page
- Blog optimization
- SEO tools such as Keyword Grader that measure optimization
- Automated lead nurturing
- Social media monitoring and email marketing tools
- Marketing, blog and social media analytics
HubSpot is just one example of software that is dedicated to helping SMBs with one-stop, integrated solutions. But why should you care about such products? Simply put: inbound marketing is one of the most cost effective ways to generate more online leads. Leveraging an all-inclusive approach allows your marketing tactics work together to produce better results. Posting a blog with optimized keywords helps generate more inbound links to your corporate website and boosts your search engine ranking so that more customers visit your site. Investing in social media? Tracking how well each social media medium reaches your audience helps you identify and focus on the most successful channels. By investing in a platform designed to help SMBs manage online marketing, you can increase the profitability and ROI of your marketing efforts – and probably save yourself a few headaches.
Let us know about the small business management tools you love.
Do you know? It’s important to monitor the pulse of conversation about your brand, products and industry to stay up to date and respond when needed. But tracking what others are saying about your business can also boost your bottom line. Say you run a restaurant in Hartford, CT. You’ve set up tracking for keywords related to food, dining out, etc. in your area. During your daily monitoring, you find three people who have posted that they are looking for a place to eat in Hartford while visiting their families over the holidays. Send them a quick response about your restaurant or promise them a 10% discount and chances are you’ll have three more parties booked at your place.
No matter what your business is, chances are people are looking for your product or services. By devoting a few minutes each day to tracking conversations, you can then act and connect with potential customers at little cost to you. Three of our favorite free tracking tools are:
- Google Alerts – Set up alerts for mentions of your company, CEO, competitors, industry keywords, etc. Google will monitor the web for new mentions of these keywords and send a compiled list of results to your inbox.
- Social Mention – Social Mention is a search engine that monitors user-generated content at over 100 social media outlets including blogs, comments, videos, Twitter, Facebook, etc. You can set up daily alerts or conduct keyword searches as needed.
- Search.Twitter.com – Helps you filter Twitter searches in real-time so that you can better interact with your audience.
- More advanced services are also available for low monthly fees. One example is Trackur, which has packages starting at $18 / month.
Start listening – for news about a competitor’s launch, a recent customer’s comment about your business or a potential business opportunity. You may be surprised by what you hear (or read).
So, what are people saying about you?
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