Google Says Title Tags No Longer a Critical Ranking Signal
19/02/16 SEO

Google Says Title Tags No Longer a Critical Ranking Signal

Google’s up to making changes again. This time, it’s not an algorithm change though. Learn how Google wants you to write title tags for high rankings.

Up until recently, the most effective way to optimize a title tag was to have the keyword near the beginning. And at exactly the beginning if possible.

For example, let’s say your keyword was “Dallas furniture company.”

Your title tag would work best for search rankings when written like this:

“Dallas Furniture Company with the Biggest Selection.”

Simple, right?

Google’s John Mueller Muddies the Issue, and Then Clarifies It

Sorry, we don’t have access to Matt Cutts anymore. If you don’t know Matt, he was Google’s most publicly accessible figure on everything SEO. On July 3, 2014, Matt said he was going on leave to spend more time with his wife. He said he’d be on leave for a “few months,” but still no word from Matt here yet in February 2016. In the meantime, Google’s replaced him with several people, none of whom are public figures.

So now, John Mueller’s one of Google’s go-tos for SEO advice. His first response to how Google views title tags went like this:

“We use that just as a part. I think it’s not like the primary ranking factor of a page, to put it that way.”

“I think?” I THINK that’s not too convincing of an answer!

Fortunately, John went on to clarify:

“We do use it for ranking, but it’s not the most critical part of a page. So it’s not worthwhile filling it with keywords to kind of hope that it works that way.”

He also said stuffing keywords in title tags results in a bad search experience. And Google works actively on dealing with that.

He continued to explain the page content was much more important than the title tag. He even said at one point that Google would still find a way to rank a web page without any title tag at all. But he did note that was not the case for content.

FYI, you can read the whole story in detail at Search Engine Roundtable.

So What Should You Do with Your Title Tags Today?

Just so you know, my copywriter’s been doing title tags this more search-friendly way for some time. Think of Google’s search results as a replacement for your phone book’s Yellow Pages.

If you said,”Dallas Furniture Store | Furniture in Dallas | Dallas Furniture Company,” how would that look in the Yellow Pages?

Kinda weird, right?

Title tags today should include the keyword. But you should focus on writing a persuasive headline first.

For example:

“Furniture Company in Dallas with Beautiful Oak Furniture”

That sounds like something your customers might want: “beautiful oak furniture.” And it gets the keyword in too, without being too obvious: “Furniture Company in Dallas.”

Google’s happy. Searchers are happy.

It’s a win-win.

Today, and going forward, that’s how all your title tags should be.

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Protect Your Search Rankings from Hacked Content
19/02/16 SEO

Protect Your Search Rankings from Hacked Content

Hackers are stirring up trouble for website owners just like you. Learn what they’re doing, how they do it, and how you can stop them in this post.

“Hack” used to be a bad term. The first thing that came to your mind in most cases was breaking the law.

Today, “hack” sometimes refers to shortcuts to doing things, like accomplishing more at work.

So which do I have for you today?

Unfortunately, it’s “hack” in the worst sense of the term.

Here’s an example of how it works, according to Search Engine Roundtable:

With a certain UK search term, you change Google’s search filter to the past 24 hours. Click on the third or fourth search term, and you’re sent through several redirected web pages until you finally end up at a porn site.

Not exactly what you’d want, is it?

Hackers do this for more common search terms, and then they redirect you to their own sites. Those sites could be porn sites, or affiliate sites trying to peddle you junk products loaded with viruses and malware. One method, called “bait-and-switch,” involves hackers gaining access to your website, using your SEO authority, and then publishing their own pages on your site that directs visitors to their own content.

The porn site? Who knows, that could be teenage thrill seekers just trying to get a rise out of searchers.

It’s a convenient crime for hackers because they’re often in different countries. So what recourse do you have to deal with them? It’s not like you can call your police department for help.

Let me explain what to do.

Hacking Prevention Strategies You Can Use

Really, the top thing you can do is to monitor your website daily with a security scan. That’s something you should have your SEO consultant or agency do. Google Webmaster Tools does a pretty decent job of notifying you of what’s going on with your site too.

Additionally:

  • Update Your Software: out-of-date WordPress plugins make your website vulnerable to hacking. WordPress itself and any other add-ons on your website need to be updated the minute those updates are available. Hackers wait for updates to happen, and then pounce immediately because they know that’s their window of opportunity.
  • Use strong passwords. Today, keeping strong passwords is no longer a nightmare like it used to be. No need to keep a sheet of paper with all 139 of your usernames and passwords anymore. 

Just use Lastpass. It’s free for your laptop or desktop for one thing. You can store an unlimited number of passwords. It generates super-secure random passwords. You just click a small button to enter your username and password to login to each site. All you have to remember is your password to log on to Lastpass. It synchs across all devices, and right now it’s just $12 per year for a single account. Not a bad deal at all.

  • Have a reputable host. Web hosting providers range from “excellent” and “trustworthy” to “dishonest” and “avoid at all costs.” Quality hosting isn’t expensive, so don’t be afraid to pay for a big-name hosting company (usually just $5 – $12 per month). And good hosts help you work through hacking issues when you have them.
  • Backup your site. Your SEO should do this for you anyway. Some backup programs back your website up to your server. Others send you an e-mail copy. You might want the e-mail copy so you have one you can save that hackers cannot access.

It’s unfortunate some people spend all their time making life difficult for everyone else. But it’s the SEO world you live in today.

So, make sure you or your SEO consultant stays on top of your site’s security. And if you don’t know how they do this, now’s the time to have that conversation.

Stay safe out there!

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Google’s New Policy Means You May Never Recover from a Manual Penalty
04/01/16 SEO

Google’s New Policy Means You May Never Recover from a Manual Penalty

Google penalties can now be permanent. Don’t hire a shady SEO who could get you nailed. Learn the latest in this post from Best Dallas SEO.

Besides its algorithmic penalties, Google also has thousands of people manually reviewing websites. This is how manual penalties come about. A manual penalty is a little more serious violation than an algorithmic one.

Until now, though, Google has allowed you to fix the issue, and then get your rankings back. However, some dishonest SEOs and websites would fix the issue, get the penalty removed, and then go right back out and do the same old things to climb the search rankings.

In particular, a post at seochat says this behavior was common among link sellers. Selling links to other websites so they rank is a flagrant violation of Google’s webmaster guidelines. And strangely, Google, which can sometimes be quite harsh for minor violations, allowed this more serious violation to happen repeatedly.

On September 18, 2015 Google Publicly Stated that Would Change

They announced it here. For starters, Google’s made it known to the public they are aware of the issue. So if your website repeatedly violates their guidelines, you’re in jeopardy of never getting your rankings back ever again.

However, repeated violations aren’t the only situation where Google may do this. If your site has clear intentions to game its rankings, they may take more drastic action too.

They actually close their blog post out by saying, ”We, the Search Quality Team, will continue to protect users by removing spam from our search results.”

Remember, In Search, Google is the Police, and No One Currently Polices the Police

Google has ultimate power in search because they’re the search engine most people use. Worldwide, 89.19% of all searches happen on Google, according to Statcounter. Bing is #2 with 4.17%, while Yahoo comes in third at 3.42%.

And those numbers fluctuate little.

So until you, or someone else, invents a way to search that most people like more than Google, they’re going to make the rules. It’s possible Congress could call them a monopoly and break them up too, but not likely.

Make Sure You Work with an SEO You Trust with Your Life

At the end of the day, you won’t get a penalty because of low-quality websites that choose to link to you. To Google, it’s clear when your SEO takes active steps to manipulate you up the search rankings.

SEOs will always be able to game the system because Google’s not perfect. But it’s a short-sighted, high-risk strategy because you could lose 40-90% of your business overnight! And now, you might never get it back.

Ask your SEO:

  • How long they’ve been in business (work with SEOs only with 5+ years of experience at minimum, and ideally 10 or more)
  • If you can review some other client websites they’ve worked on
  • For a couple client references to call
  • How they build links to your site (it should involve attracting links through a promotional strategy that could include social media)
  • Where they’re located (don’t work with anyone out of the country).
  • How much they charge (expect to pay at least $1,500 per month for quality work)

Finally, if they pressure you to use their services in any way, don’t hire them. That usually means they only want your money. Quality SEOs give you all the information you need to make a decision, and then let you decide.

Do These Guidelines Sound Obvious?

Good – that means you’re ready to make a sound decision. But, I have to repeat them because I can’t tell you how many clients come to me who’ve been burned.

Be careful out there. Protect yourself so you don’t lose your rankings – and stay competitive online.

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04/01/16 SEO

What To Do to Successfully Rank in Local Search in 2016

What’s the latest on ranking in local search for Google? Find out in this post from Best Dallas SEO, where you only get the truth about SEO.

Local search, which has change as its only constant, actually hasn’t changed as much in the past year as in prior years. In the past year or so, there’s been two big updates:

  1. Google Pigeon, which tied how local search works more closely to non-local, organic search results
  2. Reducing the local 7-pack results to the 3-pack (screenshot below) in a likely attempt to push local SMBs to use PPC (Google’s biggest moneymaker) more often:

What To Do to Successfully Rank in Local Search in 2016

A Moz Survey Reveals What’s Working Here in 2015

This survey happened within the last few months – September. So these thoughts are recent, and come from a survey of local SEO experts.

Here’s what they found most important:

  1. On-Page Signals

These include things like content, presence of the NAP information (name, address, and phone number), keywords in page titles, domain authority, content relevance and quality, and others.

More info on this in a second.

  1. Link Signals

These refer to things like inbound anchor text, the domain authority of the websites linking to you, and the quantity and quality of domains linking to you.

  1. My Business Signals

It’s an unfamiliar name for familiar information. But it refers to info like the Google Places categories for your business, having the keyword in your business title, and your physical proximity to target geographic location.

And here’s some additional super-awesome info on the top individual ranking factors, also from Moz:

Local Search 2016Local SEO is Simple…But It Isn’t Easy, or Cheap!

When you get right down to it, the concepts and best practices in local SEO don’t take a PHD to learn. Just about anyone can understand them.

But remembering exactly what to do, finding better and faster ways to do it, and then executing all that with a number of specialists working with you (SEO is too difficult to do yourself these days), plus staying on top of all of Google’s changes in the meantime, now that’s a challenge difficult for even the best SEOs to master!

So, you can do SEO yourself. But equate it in your mind to trying to file your own business taxes…when you’ve never done it before.

Sure, you can attempt to do it. But it’ll take you an ungodly amount of time. You’ll make a ton of mistakes, get frustrated, and you might even find yourself on the wrong end of an audit.

It makes sense for an experienced pro to do the work for you, or wait until you have the money so you can hire one.

Here’s to high search rankings for you in 2016 and beyond!

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3 Easy Website Design Tips to Maximize Your Conversions
09/12/15 SEO

3 Easy Website Design Tips to Maximize Your Conversions

You don’t have to be fancy or elaborate when testing your website to improve sales. These 3 small, easy, and fast changes can make a huge impact.

Web marketers obsessed with perfection can spend literally endless hours figuring out the best website design for getting the most sales.

It’s called “conversion optimization,” and some businesses shuck up $20,000 – $50,000 to optimize a single web page over a course of months.

But that’s on the extreme upper end.

At the entry level, it makes sense for SMBs to check a few key areas for quick and big wins:

  1. Calls-to-Action

You should have just one prominent call-to-action “above the fold” (the part of your website immediately visible without scrolling when you first visit).

This could be clicking a button, or calling a phone number.

Your entire home page should have 4 calls-to-action at most.

If you break either of these rules, visitors get confused, and fewer take your desired action.

  1. Headline Testing

Your website’s headline is one of the first and most immediately visible elements your visitors see.

It needs to get their attention. It must be different than what all the other companies like yours say.

If you’re an HVAC contractor, “Save Money on Your Energy Bills” is a nice start. But that’s what everyone says.

So you don’t stand out, and fewer people call.

If you say,”We’ll Keep You Comfortable All Year Long,” you’re saying something different that customers want.

To find other headline ideas, listen carefully to the actual words your customers use to talk about the biggest problem you solve for them. Include some of those words in your headline.

This builds a connection with more of them, and you get more calls and e-mails.

Customers want to save money on their energy bills too. So you can talk about that.

But it’s not what you should focus on in your headline.

  1. Test the Words on Your Call-To-Action Buttons

Again, this is just about always the same at every website for your visitors. Let’s say you’re that same HVAC contractor.

Most forms or calls-to-action end with “Get Your Free Estimate” or similar language.

Expert copywriter Joanna Wiebe offers this simple formula for writing button copy that gets more clicks and conversions:

Think from your customer’s perspective, and fill in the blank: “I Want to ________”

Customers don’t get overly excited about getting a free estimate because every HVAC contractor offers that.

So in the blank, show your customers how to get a benefit or avoid a painful problem.

It might be:

“I Want to Get My Free Estimate And Stay Comfortable All Year Long

Your Results Aren’t Guaranteed, But They’ll Likely Be Much Better

Even though these changes sound small and simple, they can have a big impact on the calls and clicks you get from your website.

You can literally experience an increase of several hundred percent when you make just one of these changes.

I can’t promise what will happen for you. Every website is unique. But it’s worth your time and effort to test once you have a nice flow of traffic to your website.

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Top 5 Search Ranking Factors of 2015 According to Moz Part 2
01/10/15 SEO

Top 5 Search Ranking Factors of 2015 According to Moz Part 2

What should you be doing with your SEO for 2015? Find out more details in part 2 of this series.

In part 1 of this 2-part series, I took a look at some of the top factors affecting search rankings in 2015.

Links are still king. And content, shockingly, didn’t seem to get as much attention as it deserves.

But, the report goes into such detail that a single blog post just isn’t enough.

So take a look at some more of the things you should be doing here as we close out 2015:

  1. Page-Level Factors that Don’t Include Keywords

Like your overall domain, pages tend to rank higher as they have more links pointing to them. That includes your own internal links and external links from other sites.

Schema.org markup, which doesn’t get a lot of attention, also has a slight positive impact on rankings. Basically, it’s microdata that helps search engines understand your content.

  1. Domain-Level Factors

.ORG extensions generally get slightly better treatment than .COM extensions. However, the difference isn’t enough to warrant registering your domain name with .ORG.

You’ll also hear things out there like you should have as short of a domain name as possible. This study found a weak relationship between domain name length and search rankings (although there was a slightly positive one).

  1. What about NoFollow Links? Should You Have Them?

The Moz study didn’t check these as an individual factor. However, they did include them as part of the factor that examined internal and external links at both the page and domain levels.

So they’re part of a healthy link profile.

  1. And You Certainly Can’t Forget about Anchor Text

Anchor text is one of the biggest changes in SEO over the years. It’s the blue text you actually see on a link. 5 years ago, it was smart to point links with anchor text that exactly matched your keywords to your website.

Today, do that with just a handful of links and you put yourself at high risk for a penalty.

That said, this is how the report concluded your anchor text should break down:

  • Partially matches your keywords and comes from many external domains
  • Exactly matches your keywords and comes from an array of other domains (but do so sparingly)
  • Partially matches your keywords and comes from many different external pages
  • Exactly matches your keywords and comes from many different pages (again do so sparingly)
  1. Engagement Metrics that Affect Your Rankings

You’ve probably heard bounce rate, the number of people that visit just one page on your website and leave, affects your search rankings.

Well, it does. But not that much. It has a low correlation with search rankings.

With a nearly two times as strong relationship, pageviews, time on site, and monthly direct visits likely affect your rankings much more than bounce rate.

“Direct” visits include people who access your website by bookmark, typing in your URL in their browser, clicking a link from a social media app for mobile, using a shortened URL, clicking a link from a MS office document, or clicking an e-mail link (depending on the provider).

Regardless of the case, you can be confident “direct traffic” is highly interested in your website.

SEO is All About Building a Great Site for Your Users

At the end of the day, Google wants websites that your users want. SEO will change, often too fast to keep up with.

But if you focus on constantly improving user experience, you’re guaranteed to do well in search now and for years in the future.

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18/08/15 SEO

Google Unexpectedly Shakes Up Local Search…Again

Google’s made dramatic changes to local search…with no warning. Learn what they are and how they could affect your SMB.

Have you noticed how local searches now look like this:

Google Shakes Up Local Search Again

SEO pros now call this the “3-pack.” Remember the old searches, when you would search for local listings, and how they gave you 7 search results?

They had 7 search results, with the business names listed, with the Google Map off the side on the right.

The official word from Google is that they’re doing this to improve the search experience. They’re saying searchers get more relevant information when multiple results are possible for a certain location.

What’s Different with the New Search Results?

So you’ve got the basics now. Take a look at what’s different with the new search results in a little more detail:

  • Your business’s phone number isn’t immediately visible
  • Your specific address isn’t immediately visible (although it sometimes is, but most of the time you see a street name)
  • Your website address isn’t immediately visible either
  • Google+ links can no longer be seen
  • Store hours are sometimes visible, depending on when during the day you search
  • You don’t see Google’s local business listing on the right anymore, although you can see it if you click to the secondary local page
  • Paid ads for related keyword searches can now be seen at the top and right side (they weren’t in either of those places in the past)

So What’s Google Doing Here?

Most likely, they’re pushing SMBs like you toward Adwords. Remember, they’re a $450 billion company, second only to Apple, which is worth around $660 billion.

They want to continue growing their profits, just like every other corporation. Why should they be any different?

If you think about it, the explanation that they’re doing this to “improve the search experience” doesn’t make sense. Basic information, like a company’s specific address and phone number, aren’t immediately found. Users have to click through to the company’s website to get that.

But, you can now click paid ads immediately (Google’s main source of revenue, by the way), when you couldn’t before. Plus, Google’s reduced the 7-pack to only 3 organic listings. So, you have to compete more intensely to get a first-page ranking for an organic listing. Or, you can pay your way by using Adwords. And that’s going to drive up advertising costs because bigger companies will now put more of their budget towards pay-per-click.

This May Not Be a Good Long-Term Move by Google…

We’ll have to see how SMBs and searchers react to this dramatic change. More clicks for users to get basic information. Businesses with the most money, not necessarily the best service, at the top of the search results.

Google was built on giving searchers the results they want more often than any other search engine, right?

This seems to be a step away from that. We’ll see what ends up happening.

Or maybe this has something to do with it?

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Top 2015 Google Search Ranking Factors According to Moz
18/08/15 SEO

Top 2015 Google Search Ranking Factors According to Moz

What should you do to rank at the top of Google in 2015? Find out Moz’s research-driven opinion.

When you read something in Time, Forbes, or Newsweek, you pretty much accept it as true because they’re the foremost authorities in their niches, aren’t they?

Well in SEO, Moz holds that position. They do extensive research to back what they say – far more thorough than anyone else.

Every 2 years, Moz surveys the world’s top SEO professionals and runs correlation studies to learn what helps and hurts your search rankings. In 2015, they surveyed 150 search marketing pros on 90 ranking factors. Dr. Matthew Peters ran a correlation study for Moz to learn which website features are associated with good search rankings. And for the first time, Moz partnered with other leading authorities in the space – SimilarWeb, DomainTools, and Ahrefs, to learn even more.

They do qualify all this with the fact that this does not “prove” how search engines rank websites. But websites with these factors present, in general, rank higher than those without them.

So take a look at what they found:

  1. Of All Attributes Studied, This One Was Found to Be More Closely Associated with Search Rankings than Any Other…

And again, in 2015, links have a stronger relationship with higher rankings than any other search ranking factor. They’ve held this position for several years now. But these days, Google’s pickier about the links pointing to your site than ever before.

They have to come from high-quality sites, can’t have over-optimized texts, should come from as many unique domains as possible, and they have to look like they were placed naturally.

  1. Isn’t Content Supposed to Be “King?”

Marketing experts think so. In fact, in terms of how influential content is for your rankings, they ranked it #3, just behind two different kinds of linking.

So in the opinion of professionals, content is important. But, the correlational study doesn’t even discuss content all that much.

What it does say is that content length has a moderate association with good rankings. So it’s important to discuss interesting information, but you don’t need to be an encyclopedia.

  1. On-Page Optimization Has a Low Correlation with Rankings

This doesn’t mean on-page optimization isn’t important. You still need to get your target keyphrases on your pages 2-6 times. What it does mean, though, is you don’t need to spam the living daylights out of your keywords to rank high.

Moz theorizes this is because Google’s more adept these days at understanding what web pages mean.

  1. Social Shares Are Good, But May Not Help Your Rankings Directly

Moz notes that this factor remains “controversial.” They’re not convinced Google’s algorithm uses social share counts, but their study shows a positive correlation between social shares and good search rankings.

This may be because social media helps spread awareness of your content, leading to more links.

  1. And You Have a Strong Chance of Getting a Penalty If You Do These Things!

Okay, so these things get kind of geeky and harder to understand. But, you should be aware of them. Definitely don’t do them:

  • Don’t have a high ratio of ad content, navigation content, or links compared to total page content
  • Don’t have pages with a high number of links relative to your page’s total content
  • Don’t have a high amount of visible text relative to total html/JavaScript code
  • Don’t get a large number of total spam flags
  • Don’t have a large number of external links in your sidebars and footers

And That’s a Wrap!

Wow, that was a lot of great SEO information from a company with an awesome reputation for accuracy and reliability. Check those things often so you keep the king of search happy!

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Google Changes on the Horizon for Home Service Providers
18/08/15 SEO

Google Changes on the Horizon for Home Service Providers

This is just a quick report to help make you aware of the Google changes on the horizon, if you are a home service provider. And who knows what other licensed service providers this will roll out for next. I am not going to spin the news right here and now, so to get the details see these two articles on Search Engine Land’s website:

  1. Google To Launch Search Service To Connect Searchers To Home Service Providers
  2. Google Home Services Ads For Locksmiths, Plumbers Hit San Francisco Market

If you Google “San Francisco Plumber” you will see an example for this new Google offering being beta tested, or you can try using this link: https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=san%20francisco%20plumber

Below Are My Preliminary Observations as an SEO

I only see the beta results on my laptop. Right now the results on my iPhone are the same results we are used to seeing. But, on my desktop there are no local map listings showing for any combo of search you do related to plumber with San Francisco? I’m not saying local listings are going away, but that I hope they aren’t. I know it’s just in the beta testing mode, so who knows but Google?

Many people don’t click on paid ads because they know they cost the companies money, or they just don’t trust them, but for whatever reason Google knows this. It appears to me as if Google might be doing this partially as a way to encourage higher click through rates on paid ads, thus increasing their revenue by styling them to look like map lisitngs. I heard a rumor two or three years ago from an ex-Google employee, who said they were eventually going to start charging for the first spot map positions exactly because of how many click throughs they get. Maybe this is what they came up with instead?

Notice it only says sponsored at the very top and not next to each paid ad like usual (see Dallas Plumber search results for comparison on a desktop). And they do look just like local listings for the most part to the untrained observer. Most people would not know any better. It’s hard to believe there will be both this style of paid ads and map listings together on the left hand side of the results page, and there sure aren’t any together in the beta testing examples, which I find odd. If they are keeping them why not include them in the beta test?

At any rate, I just felt like sharing my initial knee jerk reactions, right or wrong. Maybe this is the real reason they went to a 3 pack recently instead of a 7 pack.

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How (And Why) to Grow Your E-mail List
11/08/15 SEO

How (And Why) to Grow Your E-mail List

Your e-mail list is the best way to make money online. Learn why, and how to do it, in this post.

What kind of web marketing do you think has the best ROI? Organic SEO? PPC? Social media? Mobile marketing?

All are effective, but they’re not nearly as efficient as old-school e-mail marketing. In fact, the E-mail Marketing Industry Census of 2014 says 68% of companies rate e-mail marketing as having “good” or “excellent” ROI.

Of all channels surveyed, it got the best ranking. On top of that, e-mail marketing revenue increased by 28% within the past year of the survey.

By the way, organic search came second in effectiveness, with 67% of companies ranking it “good” or “excellent.” Content marketing was a near third, with a 63% score.

Great ROI Isn’t the Only Reason to Market to Your E-mail List!

There’s actually three more good reasons:

  1. Once you have your list built, e-mail marketing is so comparatively cheap. Write the e-mail, schedule, and send. That’s it. It doesn’t require constant upkeep to sell like organic SEO (although you do sell more with frequent updates).
  1. Google can’t tank your e-mail list. With organic SEO, you can do everything right, and Google might still trash your rankings overnight. Not so with your e-mail list. However, if you do lose search rankings and traffic, that reduces your opportunity to earn subscribers.
  1. Customers on your e-mail list buy from you repeatedly. That’s because it takes a lot for someone to part with their e-mail address and trust you’ll give them high-quality information consistently. Your e-mail list is like “marketing gold” – it contains your very best customers.

How do You Grow Your E-mail List?

Growing your list can be tough. Basically, the idea is the same as organic SEO.

You have to write the most useful content in your niche! That’s the best form of advertising for your list.

If people visit your website and see how helpful you are, they’ll naturally think,”Oh. This company’s e-mail newsletter must rock too.”

So if you’re a local HVAC contractor, you might write a guide that tells people how to do a routine checkup that you normally charge for – for free! No HVAC company does that.

1 of 2 things happen:

  1. Some customers would do it themselves, they respect how useful you are, and then they buy from you in the future when they realize they can’t do something on their own
  2. Others realize they don’t have the time or expertise to do what your guide recommends, and they hire you to do it for them now

With that Concept Down, Here’s Specific Techniques for Growing Your List

  1. Have Multiple Sign-Up Options

Your website needs a sign-up option in the right or left sidebar, and at the end of every blog post. You might also consider a pop-up that appears after people read 35-40% of your post because you know they’re interested in you at that point.

  1. Make it Shareable

When you send your newsletter, make sure you have social sharing icons for all social networks. Plus, you should have a “forward to a friend” link inside your e-mail. The web’s all about word-of-mouth.

  1. Offer an Incentive for Signing Up

For example, give customers who sign up a 10% discount. Make it clear they’ll be able to access special discounts available to no one else.

I’d Love To Tell You More about E-mail Newsletters!

…But that’s enough information for time-strapped small business owners like you. Armed with that knowledge, you can start making money from your newsletter today.

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