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12 Blogging Mistakes You Need to Stop Making for 2017

Did you know that certain blogging mistakes can cause Google to ignore your website?

Blogging mistakes not to make in 2017

Yeah.

And, you DO want to attract people to your site, right?

What about converting visitors into leads or sales? Of course!

Amazingly enough, there are just a few tweaks you can make to your blog that will make a difference and make 2017 prosperous.

You Want To…

  • build credibility and trust
  • increase traffic to your site
  • entice people to visit
  • grow your email list with conversions
  • come up on the 1st page of Google
  • get visitors to stay on your site longer
  • get more sales!

Here are 12 of the Biggest Blogging Mistakes that I see Small Business Owners make. And they are all fixable.

  1. Using the free WordPress or other free, third-party blogging platform. Having your own website with a company domain gives
  2. Using industry jargon. You’re the expert, your reader is not. Write for an 11-year-old.
  3. Not creating fresh, relevant content regularly. Google ignores stagnant websites!
  4. Not sharing your content on social media. This is the main way to publicize your blog posts. Drives people to your site. Helps with SEO!
  5. Trying to be cute with your headline. Clickbait not allowed.
  6. Writing long paragraphs. Boring!
  7. Not adding the title of the post or keywords to image “alt text” descriptions. This helps with SEO!
  8. Not adding keyword tags relevant to your blog post. This is what the search engine sees.
  9. Not proofreading before publishing. Check spelling and grammar. It is your online reputation!
  10. Not having links to other internal, related content to entice people to stay on your site longer. The longer people stay on your site, the more chances they’ll do something.
  11. Not having relevant external links. Link to related sources or quote or other articles. This actually helps with SEO.
  12. Leaving default widgets like “archives”. No one is going to look for what your wrote on a specific day. They’re looking for topics.

If  You’re Making More Than 1 of These, then you need to Attend one of my SCORE classes! Click here for the Schedule.

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing specialist & trainer helping small business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and teaches once a month at SCORE. She recently launched the Social Savvy Solution offering online, on-demand, easy-to-understand social media marketing tutorials. Helping the little guy get social savvy! You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google . Download a free ebook more mistakes you could be making!

 

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Is your website just a fancy online brochure? 24 Oct

Is Your Website just a Fancy Online Brochure?

Is your website truly working for you? It should be — 24/7. It’s way more than an online brochure.

The most beautifully designed website, whether it’s a WordPress site or other platform, is of no use if it doesn’t have the following:

  1. Fresh, relevant content, no more than a week old, written, grammatically correct, for your target audience — this converts your static website into a dynamic website. Google ignores static websites. It looks for the freshest content that matches a searchers’ request — that’s what comes up on the first page of Google search. Blog at least once a week.
  2. A reason and a way for visitors to opt-in to your email list — this turns a visitor into a lead. It’s then up to you, with some email, sales or marketing automation system, to turn that lead into a sale. Give them something of value — a free ebook, a coupon, etc. — so they’ll give you their email address. Then deliver on the promise of a monthly newsletter. Note: if you have an e-commerce site or online store, make it easy for people to shop, if that’s your main objective.
  3. An easy way to contact you or set up an appointment — if you want a phone call, the mobile version of your site has to be responsive, so people can all you with one tap. If you want them to contact you via email, have a short contact form. Don’t ask more than 2 or 3 questions. Just what to you need to qualify the lead. Make it easy to set an appointment. Use an inexpensive service like TimeTrade — saves a ton of back and forth emails when setting appointments.
  4. Make it easy for people to follow you and share your content.Social media share and follow buttons — you have to make it easy for visitors to follow you on the networks and for them to share your content with their friends. And don’t put them just in the footer!

So here are a few don’ts:

  • Don’t make people hunt for what you want them to do.
  • Don’t make your site so flashy that it takes too long to load.
  • Don’t forego design for search engine optimization (SEO).
    • The most beautiful site in the world is useless if no one can find it.
  • Don’t hire a web designer who doesn’t know about proper SEO and social media marketing. It’s part of the online marketing package. You need to know what to look for. Be wise and be educated.

In a nutshell, having a static website is like a billboard out in the middle of the ocean. Sure a passing ship may see it, but that’s it.

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing specialist & trainer helping small business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and teaches once a month at SCORE. She recently launched the Social Savvy Solution offering online, on-demand, easy-to-understand courses. Helping the little guy get social savvy! You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google+.

 

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Blogging helps drive traffic to your website 22 Aug

The Top 6 Benefits of Blogging for Business

Blogging takes too much time!

Blogging for Business works!That is the biggest complaint I get when I tell people that they need to blog 1-3 times a week for it to be effective.

However, if you don’t blog regularly, you risk having Google, the search engine completely ignore your website. Google wants fresh, relevant content written for the human reader.

Here are the Top 5 Benefits of Blogging for Business:

  1. Helps establish credibility and you can show off your expertise and knowledge
  2. Promote yourself or your business, product or service – build brand awareness
  3. Build a platform & a following – sharing your blog posts on social media gives people a reason to follow you
  4. Share opinions, how-to, reviews, advice – help solve peoples’ problems
  5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – it’s the fresh content that Google is looking for
  6. Drive traffic to your website which in turn helps build your email list and generate qualified leads

Blogging regularly continues to be a proven results-maker. Here’s what you need to do to get started:Blogging helps you grow a following

  1. Really get to know your target audience and give them the information that they need
  2. Set goals – how many visitors do you want to your site a month? How many conversions?
  3. Develop a strategic plan – how will you meet your goals?
  4. Develop a tactical plan – how will you implement the strategy? Use an editorial calendar.
  5. Get set-up properly with a website that has a blog integrated in it that’s yours and not on a “borrowed” platform. I recommend WordPress.
  6. Learn how to use the tools properly and effectively
  7. Implement – just do it!
  8. Monitor and measure – check your website statistics monthly to see what’s working and not working

What are you waiting for? Start blogging!

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing specialist & trainer helping business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and teaches once a month at SCORE. Join her on Wednesdays with the Wiz on Facebook Live at 4 pm MST every Wednesday.

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What you don't know about SEO can hurt you! 28 Mar

What You Don’t Know About SEO Can Hurt You!

Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you can’t hire someone to do just SEO [Search Engine Optimization] for you like you before. Prior to the Google algorithm changes, you could easily hire someone who knew how to “cheat” the search engines to get you on the first page of the SERPs [Search Engine Results Pages]. They used what’s known as “black hat tactics”. Today, using these tactics actually works against you and will get you flagged by Google as SPAM. To get un-flagged, you basically have to build a new website.

Today's SEO is keyword-centric. Sure you can still hire someone to do SEO for you, and what they’ll do, for a hefty monthly fee, is monitor your site’s page ranking in several services (which you could do yourself) and play with the keywords.

They may offer a blogging service, which is fine, if they know your industry and they don’t use a cheap service like Fivver. You may end up with duplicate content (articles that appear elsewhere on the web) and that will hurt you.

You can’t have word-for-word duplicate content. Be careful if you subscribe to a “newsletter service”. This is popular in the financial and legal fields. Sure they save time, but how many times is that article published online? Do a test: copy the first sentence and paste it in the Google search box and see what comes up. If there is even ONE other instance of that article word-for-word, that will hurt you.

You can also use PPC [Pay-Per-Click] advertising, but searchers actually ignore those paid ads and go straight to the organic (unpaid) search results. And you’ll notice that Google, in most instances, eliminated the right sidebar ads. No one was clicking on them!

Google, is looking for fresh, relevant content written for the human reader and that will give you good SEO.

So what do you need to do in today’s digital world to get on the first page of Google?

  1. Make sure your website is optimized for the search engine. Everything is keyword-centric. Put yourself in your target market‘s shoes. What are they going to enter into the search box to find you?
  2. Blog at least once a week! 2-3 times a week is the charm. If your website is stagnant, Google will ignore it!
  3. Get active on social media. Google+ is Google’s social network. The more active you are, the more Google rewards you with higher SERPs. Tweets appear in Google search, so get active on Twitter. If someone Googles your name, what comes up? Your LinkedIn profile should be there in the top 3 organic spots.

Here’s an extra tip: Don’t use those free or easy drag-and-drop websites. To make it easy to use, it takes a lot of code in the background. The search engine hates that code. So much so, that it will not index the good material under it. I recommend a WordPress website where your website and blog are in the same place.

Also make sure your website is mobile friendly and mobile responsive! If it’s not, it will not come up in Google mobile search! Click here to here to test it.

 

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing strategist & trainer helping business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and offers Social media classes at the new AZ Social Media Training Center. 602-738-1700. You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google+.

 

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3 Tips to Convert Leads into Sales

You’ve got a great website, you’re blogging and using social media to drive people to your website – you’re generating leads. Now, how do you convert those leads into sales?

In this video, Kate McShea shared 3 tips to help you convert leads into sales:

  1. Make sure your marketing is congruent. If you promise something in a social media post, then the link should go to that product or service – a landing page specifically for that item.
  2. Tell your prospects what you want them to do – that’s a call-to-action. Make it easy for people to give you their contact information, at least their email address. Don’t ask for too much because people won’t fill out a long form to get a freebie.
  3. Follow-up! They downloaded your freebie, that converted them from a visitor to a warm lead. They’re interested. Send them a follow-up email. Call them if you have their phone number.

This graphic from SCORE partner, Infusionsoft, explains the new “conversion funnel”.

3 tips to convert leads into sales

If you need to run your marketing ideas by a pro, a SCORE mentor can help! Click here to schedule a free mentoring sessions with someone who’s been there and done that!

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What is the domain aftermarket and how can it help your business?

What is the domain aftermarket and how can it help your business?

Have you ever struggled to find a domain name for your business’s website, or settled on a domain name you are not quite satisfied with? Do you want a name that can pass the radio test — when someone hears your domain name in a 10-second radio spot and actually remembers how to get to your website?

If you’re looking for a domain name for a new business or an upgrade that is short, memorable and brandable, consider checking out the aftermarket for domain names.

The aftermarket is broad term encompassing all sales of domains that are already owned by someone who is interested in selling their domain name to someone else. This can be through a place like eBay or GoDaddy Auctions. There are literally millions of great domains, many of which will never be back on the traditional market and can only be purchased in an aftermarket.

These names will likely cost more than a normal domain registration price. Why? In general, they’re more valuable. You’ve probably read about some domain name selling for millions of dollars, but the truth is most sell in the hundreds to couple thousand dollar range — an investment you can easily offset with the additional sales and exposure a great domain name offers your business.

Let’s say you own a notary service in New Jersey with the domain, TomsNotaryServices.net. You see the domain, NjNotary.com, for sale on the aftermarket for $1,400. Think how much more memorable that domain would be on your ads, business cards, even the side of your company van. And you could easily recoup its cost with new and retained business in a year. Then, by next year when the domain renewal is only about $15, you’ll continue to realize even more profit from the name.

That’s good business.

How does the name help you, exactly? Well, in more ways than I have space for here. A lot of business is word of mouth, and it’s easy for people to recommend you if they can remember your website address. NjNotary.com is easier for someone in New Jersey to remember than TomsNotaryServices.net. If you get one more referral a month because someone remembers your domain name, what is that worth to you?

A strong domain name also gives an air of authority. When people hear the name “NjNotary” or see it in a list of search engine results for “notary service in NJ,” it will stand out.

The aftermarket is chock full of domains that are memorable, brandable, descriptive and affordable. If you’re looking for a high-quality domain name to build a real business on, check the aftermarket in addition to the primary market. You might be surprised at what you are able to find there and what having an excellent domain name can do for your business.

By Joe Styler for GoDaddy

About the author:

Joe StylerJoe Styler serves as product manager for the aftermarket at GoDaddy. He’s responsible for marketplace products including any purchase, sale, or monetization of a domain name. During his nine-year tenure at GoDaddy Joe has served in a variety of directorial and supervisory roles. His passion is seeing his customers become successful in their business goals when using the aftermarket. He has been interested helping people with transactions on the Internet for more than 20 years. Joe received his B.A. from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, and his Masters in Divinity from Gordon Conwell in Massachusetts.

Photo Credit: Thomas Hawk via Compfight cc

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