25 Easy Tricks to Increase Your Website’s Authority and Rankings

SEO is a complex beast; it’s easy to learn the basics, but it’s hard to master the metrics that affect your site. It’s also distressingly easy to make changes that have a negative effect. Avoid these pitfalls; make use of this simple list of ways to improve your site ranking.

1. Avoid anything that obfuscates links from a code perspective.

If a robot looking at your code sees JavaScript or image URLs instead of a text link, it won’t parse the link correctly. Links are the lifeblood of SEO, so you need your valid links to be visible.

2. Pay attention to incoming links.

Link juice is a powerful, important part of SEO. If a site doesn’t have a good reason to link to yours, disavow the link. Likewise, if you don’t have a good reason to link to another site, perhaps reconsider the link.

3. Don’t forget to optimize your page titles for each page on your site.

An SEO-focused title with a keyword included is a little boost to each page. You don’t need to include your brand name in the title; your page content takes care of that.

4. Don’t let your pages go stale.

Even if a page is an old, valuable resource full of evergreen content, take the time every couple of months to spruce it up. Constantly refreshing your content on a rolling basis adds relevancy to your site according to Google.

5. Avoid the basic “click here” link anchor text; it’s too generic.

Links are powerful, so use keywords as anchor text. It’s an extra bit of keyword power you can add to every link you make, even internal page-to-page links.

6. When you mention your physical location in a post, mention a specific location.

Mentioning “our store in Orange County” is more effective than just mentioning “our store.” Local SEO is gaining power each year.

7. Don’t forget organic search phrases. Keywords alone won’t do it anymore.

Use full phrases, not just keywords. Often, your location will be part of the phrase, so combine this with the previous tip for a double whammy in SEO power.

8. Any time you post an image, make sure you have an alt text optimized for that image.

Image descriptions with keyword inclusion are a great, subtle way to add power to your SEO; and most people don’t even notice. It’s pure power for the search engine.

9. Never use frames.

It doesn’t matter how nice the layout looks.Frames are the death of SEO, they’re a pain for a user to navigate and they’re annoying to troubleshoot when something goes wrong.

10. Get your new sites or pages indexed quickly by linking to them on another site, either one of your own properties or through a guest blog.

You can also share them on Google+ for an additional bit of social power.

11. The search engines are voracious consumers of fresh, new content.

Post new blogs or pages at least two or three times each week. A constant stream of high-quality content is virtually required for modern SEO.

12. Avoid keyword overuse.

Too many instances of your keyword in your text will flag your site for keyword stuffing, which can lead to severe SEO penalties. Never try to hide keywords in the invisible text or in list form in metadata. Keyword spam is a serious issue and comes with serious penalties.

13. If you don’t have them, add in breadcrumbs.

Users love a consistent link back to category pages and your home page, and it reflects well on usability ratings. Usability, in turn, is another metric used to calculate your page authority.

14. Don’t forget e-mail link campaigns.

Links in e-mails are clicked with reasonable regularity, and your e-mail readers are an interested audience. Such links can be very useful for sharing news and important content.

15. If there are any organizations related to your industry that use .edu websites, see if you can entice them to link to your site.

Links from .edu domains are generally considered very authoritative and convey quite a bit of power.

16. Linkbait tactics in your articles may seem like a low, obvious technique for pulling in traffic.

It’s also a very effective tactic. Use linkbait titles and comments to entice user discussion, which further spreads your content.

17. SEO is not set-and-forget.

You should always be monitoring changes in the search algorithms and content rules. Make sure your site is always up to par for the best SEO value.

18. Your company owner has incredible power.

Their voice, when responding to customer comments or posting important blogs, is a huge factor in authority and credibility. A word from the owner in SEO is as powerful as the Word of God.

19. When you search for your business through Google, make sure you append &pws=0 to the end of the URL.

This disables personalized search, so your results aren’t skewed according to what you want to see.

20. Make sure every link on your site is an absolute link, rather than relative.

That way, if someone scrapes your site, the links still reference your pages. This will benefit you for a short time until the scraper is penalized, at which point you disavow the incoming links.

21. Make heavy use of social marketing.

Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, and the other big sites are all important tools for growing your page authority. Many times, users will check for a Facebook account to see if your company has a legitimate presence.

22. Make sure an enhanced image search is enabled in your Google Webmaster Central tools.

This enables Google to index and search your images, which helps your site be found by searchers looking for related images.

23. Make sure you have the social sharing suite of tools available on all of your blog pages.

If you have any hope at all of your pages going viral, users need an easy way to link to them. Clicking a social share button is far easier than copy and paste a URL, and more likely to work.

24. Content doesn’t just mean blog posts.

Consider adding a regular video blog, podcast, image slideshow, or news service to your repertoire. These forms of content are all valuable, but they’re harder to produce than blogs so you have less competition for space.

25. Don’t forget age as a metric.

Older sites have more authority, and there’s no way to boost that measure artificially. Frequently changing your domain or site design can have negative effects. Don’t expect a new property to boost to the top of SEO rankings without an empty niche.

With these tips at your command, you have a good beginner’s guide to enhancing the authority and ranking of your website. Bear in mind that Google does occasionally change their search metrics, but many of the basic tips remain the same. Quality, frequent content in a variety of media formats, shared on numerous sites and optimized for individual keywords — it sounds like a lot, but it’s easy to do when taken in stages. Don’t rush SEO; it’s a recipe for failure. Building your reputation and authority takes time, both online and off. Be willing to invest that time.


How to Track Sales from Your Blog Posting Efforts

As a business owner, you want to make sure that you get the clientele that you need to keep your business afloat. A lot of business owners, both those who run their company online and those who are local, are finding that keeping a blog on their site is enabling them to increase sales and revenue. There are many things that go into having a successful blog, and there are also many things you might want to know when it comes to tracking sales through your blog posting efforts. By understanding the benefits of an online blog for your company, you will be able to implement these changes for yourself. Many business owners have found that owning their own blog is allowing them to easily and quickly increase their sales.

Why Own a Blog for Your Business?

Owning a blog for your business is beneficial for a variety of different reasons. For one, your website visitors might use your site simply for its blog. The blog you run could be something that gives tips, information, and other advice that is similar to the type of business you’re running. For example, if you run a pest control company, you might want to write regular blog posts on how a homeowner can keep pests from entering their home. In general, the more interesting the blog post, the more likely people will come to your site just for its blog.

The great thing about owning a blog for your business is that people who come to the site for the blog are going to become interested in your overall company. If you own an online jewelry shop, they might notice some of the items that you have for sale. This could tempt them into buying something, allowing you to have your sales increase simply because they visited the blog. There are a lot of reasons to own a blog as a business owner, but getting more clients to come to your site is definitely the top reason.

Important Information on Keeping a Blog

Keeping a blog can easily be seen as beneficial, but you might also be wondering how a blog is going to increase revenue for your site and possibly even boost sales. One of the ways that a blog can help is if it is kept updated on a routine basis. You do not want your site’s blog to go untouched for weeks or months at a time. A blog that is not kept updated and fresh is going to keep clients away. The blog is thought of as dead, and it is not going to hold any interest to those who might have wanted to read it and bookmarked it.

You also want to make sure that the blog that you are running is kept updated with informative data. A boring blog post is doing nothing for the clients who are reading it. In fact, a person who feels as though they have wasted their time reading the entries might get angry at the blog owner and leave the site altogether. You do not have to update the blog daily, but try to keep it updated at least once a week with information that your clients are going to find highly useful.

Using Other Blogs for Your Business

If you would rather not keep your own blog, many people are actually paying bloggers to write about their companies and services. If this is something you’re interested in, you will find that bloggers are incredibly eager to write up entries concerning the type of business you run, services that you offer, and any other information pertaining to your company. Bloggers will need to get paid for this service, but you might find that it is well worth the effort because you’re getting more revenue.

The benefit to others blogging about your company is that they will link to your site, name your company in the entry and get people interested in the type of business that you’re running. This is highly beneficial to both older and brand new companies that are trying to establish themselves. Having an entry posted on some of the more popular blogs on the Internet is definitely worth the price that you would have to pay for this service.

Tracking Sales From Your Own Blog

If you own your own blog on your website, you might be interested to know if it is doing anything in terms of improving your sales overall. One of the best ways for you to find this out is to look at the statistics of your site through your web hosting provider. The statistics will often tell you which pages are being hit the most by online visitors. If you notice that a lot of people are hitting your blog from search engines, this is a good sign that the blog is increasing your revenue.

Another thing that you might want to do when it comes to tracking sales with your own blog is to look at the outward hits from the blog itself. For example, you will go and look at the blog’s visitor statistics and look to see where the person is clicking from there. If you notice that people are clicking on other areas of your site after visiting your blog, this is a sign that the blog interested them enough to make use of the rest of your site.

Tracking Sales From Another Blog

If you’ve paid a blogging service to write about your site and what you offer, you are probably very interested to see if it is helping in any way. After all, the last thing you want to do is pay for a service that is going nothing to improve and increase your revenue. The best way to accomplish this is to, again, look at your site’s statistics. You will be able to see immediately where a visitor has come from before visiting your site. If you notice that many of your visitors are coming from a specific blog, this is a sign that the blogging service you paid for is definitely working its magic.

Another way to track sales when it comes to another blog is to go to that blog in general and read comments. Many other bloggers comment on paid posts, meaning that you will be able to see what others are saying or suggesting about your business. This can be very helpful for those who want to improve their business and see if their paid blog posts are actually improving their sales.

By making good use of these techniques, you will be able to more easily track your sales and get the revenue that you’ve always imagined. Whether it’s through your own blog or another blogger’s site, you will find that tracking sales helps you to see what is working and what isn’t working. If you’re paying another blogger to write about your site and you notice that you are not getting any hits from their blog, you might want to reconsider having them continue blogging about the services that you are offering to the public online or in the local area.

How to Keep Your SEO Clients Happy and Thriving

If you run an SEO company and want to keep your customers satisfied, you will need to give them a quality product and excellent customer service. It is difficult to do so in the long run as clients are often finicky and difficult to please. Luckily, if you keep them excited, you will enjoy higher profits and your clients will return over and over. At the same time, they will recommend your services to other potential customers. With this in mind, here are six ways to keep your SEO clients happy and thriving.

Describe the process

Above all else, when you work with website owners, explain the entire process to them, in detail. Pretend your clients don’t know anything about SEO and you will not struggle to explain simple concepts to them. When you explain the process and educate them about SEO, they will know why you continue the way you do. While not easy at first, when you talk to your current and potential SEO clients and explain the process, you will give them a reason to stick around and use your services in the future.

Otherwise, if your clients are lost or confused, they are likely to head to your competition or look for another approach. Remember, if your clients are spending plenty of money to build their SEO strategy, they expect you to explain the process and help them along the way. Treat your customers well and try not to grow frustrated as they will not always understand SEO. In fact, if you explain the process to them and curb their expectations slightly, you will help your cause and keep your clients interested in the long run.

Constant updates

It takes a leap of faith to sign up for SEO services. If a client writes a massive check, he or she will expect results quickly. While not plausible, you can quell their fears by providing minor updates every week or two. To start, when your customer signs up for services, work with him or her and ask them what keywords they want to rank highly for.

Offer a few suggestions as they will want to hear your opinions. Then, before doing any work for your client, check the website’s initial keyword rankings. Once you know where the customer stands, you will know how to proceed and where to turn. Ideally, when you offer this information, you would call your customer and send them an Excel file with the updated rankings.

Provided they move in the right direction, your client will express happiness and not worry about wasting money on your services. While providing the updated results, tell your client you plan to improve their situation and work harder to bring the site to the top.

Don’t use black hat techniques

With SEO, you can break the rules and land on the front pages of Google. By buying links, spamming the Internet with your articles, and guest post blogging all over the place, you can watch as a site rises in the ranks quickly. However, in the long-term, you will damage the reputation of the site, and come to the next algorithm update, you will watch as the rankings plummet.

Once the rankings of a site drop, you and the site owner will face an uphill battle as it’s difficult to fix the situation once Google doles out punishment. If your potential clients want to try black hat methods, tell them why it is an unwise idea. While you may lose a customer or two to a competitor who breaks rules, you will enjoy better relationships in the future with your clients. If your clients understand why you take a slower approach, you will not need to explain the situation or worry about angry site owners calling you and asking why the results take too long.

Tweak your campaigns

With SEO, it is important to change as you needed. At no point should a site owner stop trying and sit back and enjoy their results. While tempting, understand that your competition will try harder and work on their strategies. Over time, if you sit back and relax, you will watch as other websites with hardworking owners pass your site. While true, once you land on page one, tone it down slightly as you can follow a slow-and-steady approach to ensure your customers retain their rankings.

Luckily, if you run a viable campaign with multiple methods such as press releases, social media, and guest post blogging, you will not need to worry as the client’s site will maintain stable rankings when you employ a multifaceted approach. While you need to change it up occasionally, don’t take it overboard; give new campaigns a time to thrive. Remember, don’t commit drastic changes all the time as you will struggle to understand what works and what fails to boost the site.

Look at their competitors

If you want to find out how to rise in the ranks, look at the competition. Do a Google search and click the top four or five links. Inspect the sites, look at their keyword usage, and website structure. Then, try to find their links via a Google search. When you learn about the competition, you can discover new ways to help your site owner rise to the first page and even surpass the top sites.

While it is a time-consuming task and will involve plenty of legwork, you can find new methods that will enable you to beat the competition easily. Exercise extreme caution here as you don’t want to steal ideas or lift content. Instead, take the good and the bad from the top five sites and you can formulate a plan to build your client’s online presence.

Always encourage them

Finally, you need to encourage your customers all the time. To start, from day one, run the numbers and show them the benefits of using SEO services. Tell them how expensive it is to run a Google AdWords or other advertising campaigns. When you compare advertising costs to the costs of an SEO firm, you can convince the site owner to proceed without trepidation. At the same time, encourage your clients to take a peek at their analytics and current results.

When a website owner checks this often, he or she will express fewer concerns or remorse as they can watch as their site thrives. Over the long haul, when your customers watch their site fly and their conversions skyrocket, you will not need to worry about panicked calls from website owners worrying about their rankings.

When you provide SEO services to your clients, you need to understand the process and inform them how the process works and what they need to do to succeed. Then, start working and do everything in your power to help your site owner find success in the SEO world. While difficult in the beginning, with a long-term outlook and slow-and steady-approach, your clients will love you as their site hits the first few pages of Google. Finally, show your clients how to check their results. When doing this and providing excellent results to your customers, your business will thrive and you will attract new clients without a massive effort.

How to Keep Your Site Online and Safe from DDoS Attacks

On the modern Internet, one of the biggest threats to the functionality of a business is the possible downtime of their website. When your website goes down, any incoming traffic bounces from an error message. Some people may see that error and decide your site is no longer functional. Others simply go somewhere else to make their purchase. If the site is down too long, Google may enact SEO penalties. All of this can be caused, intentionally, by hackers implementing a Distributed Denial of Service attack, or DDoS.

What is DDoS?

To understand a DDoS, you must understand computer malware and the basics of how web servers work.

Some types of malware are designed to infect a computer and run other processes in the background. Your computer, infected with such malware, can be used to load a website without you noticing. This makes your computer part of a botnet; a large network of infected computers controlled by the maker of the malware.

When you — knowingly or not — load a website, your computer makes a request of the server that hosts the website. This requires connection bandwidth and server CPU power. Most web servers can handle up to a certain amount of traffic before they cut off additional incoming requests. This helps prevent glitches that open up security holes, stress hardware, or damage the server.

A DDoS attack is designed to trigger these mechanisms, taking your site down from the public Internet and leaving you at the mercy of the hacker responsible. They may attempt to hold your traffic ransom, compromise your site to steal user data or perform some other nefarious trick.

Preventing DDoS Attacks

There are a few ways you can protect yourself from possible DDoS attacks. Unfortunately, you cannot assume that you will be safe simply because you’re a small business. Small businesses are often at risk simply because they do not have the resources to fall back on, such as those a global company has.

1. Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)

CDNs act as middlemen between your company and your audience, putting their technology to use in ways you or a typical server host can’t. They have high-performance machines and scripts that are much more resilient in the face of oncoming traffic than traditional web servers. Essentially, you eliminate the risk of small botnets affecting your traffic. A large, ongoing and incredibly widespread DDoS attack may still punch through, but it takes quite a bit more work for a DDoS hacker to affect your site.

2. Use CDN DDoS Protection

Most CDNs have a number of different features you can set when you implement a contract. Some of these features, such as caching and edge servers, help prevent incoming DDoS traffic from affecting your site.

Another advantage of the CDN is the additional layer of security they provide. CDNs often provide firewalls and DNS services that eliminate security holes typically used by DDoS hackers. Even if a DDoS is successful in bringing down your website, you are still secure in terms of user data.

3. Consider a Third-Party DDoS Security Suite

There are several security providers in operation today that provide proactive security against DDoS attacks. These companies operate by analyzing incoming traffic and identifying the signs of an impending DDoS attack. They work because a DDoS attack is not a clean, on-or-off action. It requires dozens, hundreds, or thousands of computers operating simultaneously. Often, only a few will receive the signal to target a specific website before the main bulk becomes a threat. Services such as the AT&T DDoS Defense service detect these trickles of bad traffic and take steps to minimize the potential impact of incoming DDoS traffic.

The specific application you are looking for is the Web App Firewall. The WAF is a smart system that knows what a typical web user looks like and how they behave. It also knows what the typical botnet computer looks like. If it identifies traffic that looks malicious, it takes steps to block that traffic before it starts to eat up your web host bandwidth.

4. Pick a Solid Web Host

Even if you use a CDN, you still need the bulk of your website on a traditional web host. This means you need to choose a web host with guaranteed uptime, resilient servers, and anti-DDoS security features. If you’re not sure about your host, look into your terms of service. Some things you want to avoid:

  • Bandwidth caps. If your host shuts down your site once a certain amount of bandwidth has been used, a DDoS attack will be able to shut down your site for weeks at a time with virtually no effort.
  • No security features. Good web hosts provide the tools you can use to help protect your site.
  • Out of date software. If the framework used by your server is out of date, hackers can take advantage of unpatched security holes.
  • Extreme charges for excess bandwidth use. A web host charging for excess traffic might run up a bill of thousands of dollars in a DDoS attack; something most businesses can’t handle.

At the very least, contact the customer service department of your web host to ask about their DDoS protection. You need a host that understands the thread of a DDoS and is proactive about applying solutions, not one that dismisses the threat and your concerns. If you have to choose a package that allocates a certain amount of bandwidth, make sure it’s more than you think you may need.

5. Remote Backups

In the event of a DDoS attack, servers may throw errors that delete or fail to save recent changes to your site, including recent purchases or blog updates. In extreme cases, stressed hardware can fail, leading to the complete loss of your site. While both your web host and your CDN should have some kind of active-backup, you should also keep one of your own. A remote, cloud-based backup is the best security against information loss.

6. An Efficiently Programmed Site

This one falls down to the responsibility of the company you hire to develop your website. Some actions on a website are more complex than others. Loading a piece of text takes a tiny amount of memory, while an image requires more. Complex operations require more processing power and bandwidth. If it takes a significant amount of resources to load a page on your site, each individual hit from a botnet becomes more effective. Conversely, if your site is coded efficiently, botnets have to be larger or more dedicated to their attack if they want to be effective. Make sure your site is coded efficiently and that individual pages load with a minimum of server requirements. A CDN will help with this, of course, by distributing some of the load.

DDoS attacks are becoming increasingly common as more and more devices are compromised. Hackers are finding it easier than ever to implement a DDoS attack against an unsuspecting small business, possibly at the request of a competitor. Anyone can hire time on a botnet these days; you need to take steps to ensure that your business is protected.

How Can I Check to See If My Website Is Penalized?

If you have a website that you are tying to rank with the search engines, you have every reason to be concerned about getting penalized by Google. Between the Penguin, Panda and Hummingbird updates, many thousands of sites, if not millions, have suffered losses of traffic and revenue due to being penalized by the search engine giant.

There are several steps to take if you want to prevent this from happening to you. First of all, you should be aware of what causes Google to penalize a site. Then you can take certain actions to find out if this has already happened to you or if it’s likely to happen. Finally, you can take steps to ensure that your site is Google-friendly in the future.

What Causes Google to Penalize Sites?

There are several main reasons why Google may lower your ranking or de-index your site. These include:

  • Low Quality Content -This is a catch-all term that is open to interpretation, but it includes sites that have little or no original content, consist mostly of advertising or, worse yet, contain unintelligible content. An example of the latter would be a site that uses poorly written PLR or publishes articles that have been run through spinning software.
  • Hacking, Malware or Spam -This may not be your fault, but if your site has been hacked or contains malware, it will be deemed unsafe for visitors. Similarly, if spammers target your site it can create the appearance of a low quality site. Some spam is common, but if, for example, you have a post that has hundreds of spam replies, this can be a red flag.
  • Unnatural Links -This has become increasingly important over the last few Google updates. From Google’s perspective, any links that appear unnatural -that is, created for SEO purposes rather than the benefit of readers- are suspect and may cause your site to be penalized. Your links should also be well distributed across your site. For example, if all or most of your links are directed at your home page, this will not look natural.
  • Keyword Stuffing -If your keywords are used excessively, this is another sign to Google that you are trying to game the system. When you publish content, keywords should be included but used in a natural manner. On a similar note, anchor text that is repeated too often is viewed as unnatural. You should vary your anchor text using different keywords.

Finding Out if Your Site Has Been Penalized

It’s important to know if your site has been penalized by Google. If you suspect this might be the case, there are a few indications you might look for.

A Sudden or Steady Drop in Rank -This is the most obvious sign. In fact, without a drop in ranking you’d have no reason to worry. Keep in mind that you may be penalized for one keyword phrase and not others. Or certain pages on your site can be penalized. That’s why it’s essential to track your site’s rankings on a regular basis.

Check Webmaster Tools -You can check for a manual penalty by logging into Google Webmaster Tools, where such actions are listed. If you click on Search Traffic and Manual Actions, you can find out if you were penalized. For example, if Google detects unnatural links on your site, you will get a message explaining the issue.

Stay Current Regarding Google Updates -There are services that provide information on Google’s algorithms. Algoroo, for example, tracks changes by tracking the rankings of many different keywords across the web. This is something worth checking if you notice that your ranking has dropped recently.

What to Do if Your Site is Penalized

If you’ve discovered that your site has been penalized, there are a few actions you can take. First of all, you should go over your site carefully and try to identify the reason for the problem. Then you can at least not make the same mistake in the future. This, however, may not by itself reverse the penalty. It can take a long time to get back in Google’s good graces. Sometimes, however, there are shortcuts.

Remove Duplicate Pages and Low Quality Content -If some of your pages or posts are duplicate content, they should be removed. Just to clarify, this means duplicated on your own site. Having content published from other sites is not going to get you penalized, as this is a common practice on many authority sites. Pages or posts that are very short or containing no helpful information should be upgraded or removed as well.

Take Security Measures -Since malware, viruses, and spam can give your site a low-quality rating with the search engines, you should regularly check your site for such problems. If you use WordPress, there are many good plugins that can help keep your site secure.

Disavow Links Tool -This is a tool created by Google that allows you to disavow any problematic links on your site. You should use this resource with care, as you don’t want to remove helpful links. In fact, if you don’t use it properly, the Disavow Links Tool can actually harm your ranking.

Before disavowing any links, you should perform what is known as a link audit. This can be done through Google Webmaster Tools, where you can get a list of links to your site. You will then download these to a file or to Google Docs and then get a backlink profile. For the latter, you will have to use a service such as SEOMoz or Majestic SEO which will analyze your links.

Low quality links include sites that are not indexed by Google. Similarly, links associated with spammy sites such as porn sites, online casinos, online pharmacies and the like should be removed. A link audit will also reveal other problematic links, such as from sites containing viruses or malware. Once you’ve identified the links you want to remove, you can contact the sites in question and ask them to remove the links. This will not always be effective, but some sites will comply. Any remaining links you want to remove can be submitted to the Disavow Links Tool.

Send a Reconsideration Request – If you are confident that you have taken care of any problems on your website that were responsible for the penalty, you can send a Reconsideration Request. You can reach this through Google Webmaster Tools.

Keep Your Site Ranking Well

If you want to achieve or maintaining a good ranking with the search engines, you should consistently monitor your site. This includes all of your pages and your main keyword phrases. If you detect any possible problem, you should take a close look at your site and see if you can identify the culprit. Keep in mind that there are natural changes in rankings and not every drop indicates that you’ve been penalized. In some cases, it just means you’ve fallen behind your competitors for certain search queries. If you have done something that’s caused Google to penalize you, all you can do is take steps to remedy it. Make the necessary changes and resolve to not make the same mistake in the future.



5 Strategies to Come up with New Long Tail Keywords

The trend in long-tail keyword use in marketing strategy is largely the result of cost efficiency in advertising. Used as a cost conversion mechanism in search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) online advertising campaign, long-tail keywords reduce cost-per-click while increasing the number of click-through observations. By increasing the rate and quality of SEO and PPC response, long-tail keywords have been the subject of Web search engine providers like Google, as those companies attempt to improve long query proficiency.

The Power of Long-Tail Keyword Advertising

The concept of virtual crowd marketing establishes consumer equity at the point of search engine keyword classification. Long-tail keywords from natural language searches online offer key insights into advertising conversion. When visitors observe SEO or PPC advertising spots, the decision to ‘click-through’ to a company website is a discerned one. If the conversion of visitors to customers offers the rationale to strategic advertising placement, keyword precision is critical.

Long-tail keywords create a record of natural language searches leading to advertising engagement. Popular for building crowds of customers, long-tail keywords go viral more than any other keyword language taxonomy. Peer-to-peer sharing of a brand, it’s advertising, and website marketing collateral is more likely in response to long-tail keyword searches. Named after statistical long-tail distributions, the probability that long-tail keyword searches will increase the magnitude of advertising ‘click-through’ frequency is high.

Gaining popularity in the past several years, long-tail keyword advertising is especially agile in its ability to sell a volume of unique items, all under the same name brand. For instance, a long-tail keyword advertising strategy is used by online retailer aggregators such as Amazon.com, and Yahoo.com to sell a range of warehousing and third party goods.

Compatible with operations strategies designed to reduce distribution and inventory costs, long-tail keyword searches capture the most precise advertised item per search engine query. Companies can use reporting on long-tail keyword searches to control inventory and cut logistics costs according to the power-law distribution or Pareto distribution theories.

Perfect for application in channel marketing strategies online, long-tail keyword placement allows for flexibility after an advertising campaign goes live. An apt method of creating modular campaign design in businesses where advertising is limited to a niche segment or where product lifecycle is abbreviated, long-tail keyword strategies allow advertisers to leverage user-driven innovation, social network analytics, and multi-scale marketing components in the development of an online advertising campaign.

Long-Tail Keyword Strategies

The integration of long-tail keyword strategies in PPC advertising campaigns increases competitive advantage in niche markets. Designating channel advertising placement in niche segments of a market allows a business to target customers precisely where competitors are not. Equally, the ratio of quality to cost can influence the decision to incorporate long-tail keywords in a campaign.

The most efficient and effective keyword strategy for SEO and PPC advertising, long-tail keywords are the highest caliber search results, as the inquirer has added precision to the query. Long-tail keyword strategies are a higher return on investment in marketing. With visitor volume expected to be low, on-demand ‘click’ through payments structured by SEO and PPC advertising hosts add value to conversion.

Online marketing studies show that long-tail keywords are responsible for upwards of 80% of visitor conversion in an SEO or PPC advertising campaign. The fact that cost-per-lead is far less than average makes long-tail keyword marketing well-suited to market entry in competitive segments.

The ‘5’ Most Effective Long-tail Keyword Strategies

Expand market reach and advance conversion by following the five ‘5’ steps to long-tail keyword advertising strategy:

  • 1. Query Reports

Prior to initiating a long-tail keyword strategy, the best method of building a taxonomy is by running an AdWords query report. Running a query on a recent AdWords campaign reports terms not already listed as part of a campaign. Using an existing Google AdWords account is the most expedient and reliable method of building a long-tail keyword list. Reflecting recent user observations, the Search Query Report offers important insights into aggregate response and keyword performance. Query results inform bidding as well. A comparison of competition levels for each keyword enables the calibration of an ad campaign according to the highest performing keywords at a lower cost per conversion.

Competitor keyword reporting is critical for the design-in of unique advertising content. The use of competitor keyword performance in a long-tail keyword strategy will assist in filling gaps in not covered by another similar advertiser. The benefit of tools like KeywordSpy, AdGooRoo, and SpyFU, is that online advertising placement can be channeled to exceed competitor reach or to generate traffic in segments where they are not. This also reduces the cost of bidding. By identifying long-tail opportunities, advertisers can increase conversion and outperform competitors.

  • 2. Keyword Localization

The localization of keywords increases foreign language syntax proficiency, as well as assists in the acknowledgment of demographic values. Appending keywords with location terms (i.e. country, state, region, city, town, zip, or area code) AdWords Analytics reporting will provide metric reporting on ‘click-through’ traffic resulting from keywords searches. Include qualifying terms to add definition to localization information to maximize the reach of advertised product and service segmentation. Qualifiers used in long-tail natural language searches add new keywords to those results. Supplement keywords with add-ons and commonly used descriptive terms (i.e. color, style, model, type) to structure search syntax more narrowly.

  • 3. Website Search Engine Record

Reported data from a website’s search box can add further information about what visitors are searching for. Google’s Custom Site Search box is a popular tool used in long-tail keyword queries. Investigation of a website’s search box often reveals unique information not accessible on a third party site. Review searches for terminology related to products, phrases, and map directions. Reporting of exact data from a website search box adds knowledge to a long-tail keyword strategy.

  • 4. Search Engine Referral Traffic

Secondary referral traffic to your website offers another compendium of long-term keyword data. Indices of organic search referral traffic identify which keywords were searched immediately prior to y arrival at a website. Although some of this traffic will be categorized as “Unknown Keywords – SSL”, the benefit to secondary search engine data is that it serves as a simple random sample of a global population of potential consumers.

Much like a snowball sample designed to capture the objective responses from a large general population of unknown users, search engine referral traffic data offers a natural solution to this concept, generating data about long-tail keyword searches. Tools like HubSpot’s Sources Tool and SEOMoz report on secondary search engine referral traffic, including long-tail keyword search phrases. Analysis of the volume of searches redirected to your site increases the chance that the long-tail keywords selected for an online advertising campaign will optimize marketing return on investment.

  • 5. Cloud Content

Third-party virtualization services can also be used to gather information about search engine content from a website. Cloud aggregation of website traffic data is continuous. Advertisers can source details about website performance at any time from storage. Cloud-based visualization capabilities optimize long-tail keyword search data in a graphical illustration. Reporting of visitor frequencies, as well as trend analyses of long-tail keyword searches from website traffic data found on a cloud, can be used by marketing specialists in the creation of an online advertising campaign.