Your blog is only as good as the content you create… though the backlinks to your web site are going to be pretty important too. Having your blog setup on the major social networks will also help, but you are going to need to come up with a plan to continually build quality and relevant backlinks over time.
In this “create a blog” case study we are going to use a few different methods to make sure we get some link juice flowing to our site, while spending a minimal amount of money in the process.
The main component of our link building is going to come from guest blogging, but only on relevant sites, which will be more challenging than writing on as many guest blogs as we can fine. Quality over quantity… especially when focused on “related” blogs. (more details on this below)
In this case of TechSupportJobSource.com, we are going to be looking for more finance, tech and workplace related blogs than internet and marketing type of blogs.
Other link building methods that we will incorporate into this case study are:
Press releases certainly aren’t what they used to be, but they can still get your url listed on some big sites, especially if you are creating quality content that other people are willing to share. We aren’t going to focus much effort on press releases, but when we find something worthy of creating one for, we can test out the results. To get the most out of your press releases try to focus them on current news and events that people are searching the news for.
When creating a blog, you are always going to want to build content that people are willing to share on their site and with their friends. Infographics are a great way to do this. In the coming weeks we may release a jobs related infographic and see how it helps with the overall link building of the site. When building your infographics, be sure to make sure the information is relevant to your site and using a big logo at the bottom to send visitors back to your site.
How to Guides
Everyone is using the search engines to find information, especially when it comes to finding jobs and earning more money. If we come across any article directories or job related sites that are looking for “how to” or information guides based around the topic of our site, and if we can get a link back, that would be great. eHow is a great example of a site that’s worth writing quality content for.
Our Focus is on Guest Blogging
As mentioned at the beginning of the post, we are going focus our efforts on guest blogging. There are many reasons why we can benefit from focusing on guest blogging versus other link building methods.
- Real links on high page ranked sites
- All articles have potential to send traffic back to your site
- There are no costs involved with guest posting, just your time
Here are a few more points that we need to stress about guest blogging.
Using the Right Anchor Text – “click here”
Ever since the latest Google Panda/Penguin updates, they are going after sites that focus too much effort on link building that is catered towards their niche keyword. For example, instead of linking to our case study site with “tech support jobs”, using a variation of “click here”, “visit” and “go to” would be great ways to spice up the variation of anchor text. You can also link using your full url, which Google has no problems with.
Posting on Relevant Blogs
One of the big challenges with guest blogging is finding relevant sites that will accept guest posts. It’s easy to start a new “blogging” or “wordpress” niche blog and immediately have access to thousands of blogs looking for more content, but it gets much harder when you are focusing on finance and job web sites. Still, there are plenty of sites out there, it’s just a matter of looking. In addition to finding blogs that are related, be sure to also cater your guest post content with the same related topics as well.
Link to Your Inner Content Pages
Another good tip for you to follow in your overall link building and guest blogging process is to not only link to your main page. You should also be linking to your inner pages of your blog, while also linking them together as well. Again with the anchor text, use a wide variation and make sure all of your blog posts are linking to each other at least one.
Get Started with Your Link Building Now
Now that you understand a few of the best ways to start building links towards your new blog, don’t get too excited! We don’t want to scare off Google before we even get started. Link building is a slow and quality based process. You don’t want to build too many links too fast.
** Join in on the create a blog case study –> Click here to start your blog!
Local Small Business Optimization Strategies
Ever since Google made changes to their search algorithm, and introduced Google+, small business are benefitting more. The key change that Google made is their ability to provide search results based on location. This has improved the overall search experience for people because now when they search commands like – “Italian restaurant”, “banks”, and “flower shop”, you’ll find what’s close by. However, for small businesses to feel the positive effects of these changes, it’s important they optimize their websites correctly. It’s important they, add the right keywords and data so search engines pick-up on them when displaying search results.
I decided to do some research, and provide you with the best local optimization tips. This way if you’re a local business, you can start making changes right away. Let’s get started and your feedback will be greatly appreciated.
The Right Keywords
When someone is searching a towing company, and they’re located in Los Angeles, it’s important as a business owner you have those keywords placed within your pages. This will let Google know that you’re a business which offers this type of service, and have a business located within the region. First, how does Google track where the searcher is located?
First, they look specifically at the keywords typed into the search bar, and secondly, where they are typing from because the browser does have its own IP address delegated. Both will ensure the results obtained are as relevant as possible, however, the owner of the business must do their part too.
When optimizing your website, it’s important you have the address in place, and keywords like “Los Angeles” and “Towing” in the URL, on the page, and in the title of the page. The best practice is to choose keywords which relate to your business well so when Google indexes your page, you’ll be able to show up in the search results.
Here is a great resource on how to optimize your pages correctly as a local business.
Google Business Listing
As a small business, it’s very important to create a small business page on Google. Start by submitting your business to Google, and optimizing the description, name, and adding all the other relevant information. Why is this even more important now than before? Simple, it’s because now displays the local business high within the search results when searching. Just look at the example below when I did a search for “Italian restaurants” –
You can see how the nearest restaurants to me showed up first in the results. These are all connected to Google Business only because the owners added them by creating a page. Head over to Google Business, and create a page for free.
It’s important to add your business to local directories which are great for traffic, but also brand awareness. As Google starts to see your business more within directories, it starts to increase your value slowly increasing your rankings within the SERP’s. This doesn’t have to be hard because you can hire someone to go through adding your business to other directories. For example, head over to Fiverr.com and purchase a gig for $5.00 for 10-15 citations, and that’s all you really need to get started. However, focus on quality sites because these add most of the value quickly.
Select the Right Categories
Have you noticed when adding your business to directories, Google, and other business sites, you’ll always be asked what category your business belongs too? The reason is quite simple, it’s because doing this allows the search engine to understand more about your business. For example, when someone’s searching “Italian food”, they can be searching for food equipment, restaurants, chefs, etc. However, by simply stating what category your business belongs to, it’ll diffuse a lot of confusion…right?
The next time you are adding your site anywhere, it’s important to list the right category so things stay smooth, and clear always.
These are my top small business optimization strategies so start following them right away. They are very easy to follow, and the results can be amazing in a very short period. If you simply don’t have the time to do all this yourself, then hire someone who is experienced to get the job done for you. But, ask to see their work, and get a breakdown of their experience so you know the person you hired knows what they are doing.
When Your Small Business Should Start a Blog
Blogging is one of the most reliable methods of making a name for yourself as a startup. It is a valuable tool that helps you connect with your target audience, amass followers through a lead capture strategy, and put the brand out there through content promotion; such as social media posts, newsletters, and guest blogging.
It’s not so much a question of ‘if’ your brand should be leveraging the power of content marketing, but more of a question of ‘how’. With so many different options to choose from, it’s not just about creating new content and placing it on your site — it’s also about making sure you are effectively promoting it in the process.
Keep in mind that it’s not really a question of whether you need a blog or not—it’s when you’re going to build a blog for your business’s website. Without a blog, you can’t really prove your expertise in your industry and win the trust of your target audience. According to statistics, 81% of online consumers trust blogs for advice. A blog may also drive purchase intent and helps you unlock a higher conversion rate for your website.
Aside from connecting with your target audience, a blog will also fuel your SEO efforts by giving web crawlers more content to index. The more blog posts you publish, the more exposure your site gets.
How Soon Should You Start a Blog?
Granted, you do need to prepare the foundations of a successful blog first before you begin to produce content. Fortunately, you don’t need to be a professional designer to set up a beautiful site. A CMS like WordPress can provide you with brilliant themes and useful plugins to put together a fully-functional site; all without writing a single line of code.
Once you have everything set up and customized, make sure to get on with blogging as soon as possible. This 2016, 76% of B2B marketers say they will increase their blog content production this year. However, successful blogging requires a ton of research and planning. On top of writing the actual blog posts, you will also spend a lot of time looking for topic ideas, getting-to-know your target audience, and devising a solid keyword strategy. Here are some of the best tips you need to remember when blogging:
Write for Your Audience
First and foremost, remember that you need to blog for people—not for machines. The reason behind this problem is because some marketers only choose to blog for SEO. However, remember that search engines now prioritize the reading experience of users when it comes to determining the SERP rankings of content. While they still take into account the overall quality of written content, they also consider other factors such as bounce rate, page loading speed, session duration, and other indicators of user engagement level.
A rule of thumb is to develop personas for your target audience. Identify the information they need, understand their problems, learn their content preferences, and provide the necessary courses of action to help them. A content research tool like BuzzSumo will help you learn more about the type of content that’s popular in a specific industry.
“Don’t focus on having a great blog. Focus on producing a blog that’s great for your readers,” says Brian Clark of Rainmaker Digital.
Invest in Custom Content
When learning the content preferences of your target audience, you are often required to explore other content formats such as infographics, eBooks, explainer videos, and slideshows. According to statistics, 90% of online consumers prefer custom content while 60% feel more “connected” with brands after discovering custom content from their website.
Keep in mind that your brand image is on the line with every custom content you publish. You need the help of professional producers and graphics designers to make killer content for your blog audience. While setting up a blog can be cheap, you might as well consider getting a business loan to fuel your custom content creation efforts.
Lastly, remember that you need to focus on the flow of your content and walk your readers through every step. Doing so will help build relationships with your readers and establish your brand as an authority. Also mention the key takeaways at the beginning or by the end of a blog post to improve retention.
“Content marketing and custom content are customer relationship processes that require unique and well-crafted content. Whichever approach you take, you need to invest either your time or money in content creation,” says Neil Patel of NeilPatel.com.
Be Consistent with an Editorial Statement
A lot of companies overlook the importance of having a clear editorial statement that keeps content development in sync with a brand voice. It helps make your content distinguishable amongst the internet’s vast sea of resources and keep your content team in the same page. This is something you should always keep in mind when creating content for your blog.
To identify your editorial statement, focus on supplementing the three key parts: the target audience, the deliverables, and the main goal. To help you understand this process, below is an example editorial statement for an SEO blog:
SEO blog provides online marketers (target audience) with up-to-date strategies (deliverable) to demystify the process of ranking for search engines (goal).
“Your editorial mission is something you—and everyone on your team—need to internalize. It is the measuring stick by which you evaluate everything you do,” says Michele Linn of Content Marketing Institute. Make sure to follow his advice!
Changing Workplaces Use New Apps to Guide Productivity
The last decade reveals a significant change in the workplace environment due to new technology and the ability to convince employers that talent can work remotely and that they can allow and even encourage flexibly in the work environment. Now that the new dynamic of work is becoming accepted across more industries and business segments, the work environment is continuing to evolve as more technology is developed to guide productivity and shape collaborative processes.
Working in these new ways has made it possible to get more done and has contributed to better work/life balance, but it has also created new challenges in terms of maintaining employee motivation and connection to the company. However, technology is now working to address those challenges that remote workers face and to help provide a tighter network and sense of belonging to a company, despite where the work is being conducted.
From apps to software platforms, the changing workplace now has more tools that encourage more companies to alter where they expect their talent to work. Here are a few examples:
Asana provides a way to create and delegate tasks. It provides a way to chat within each task so conversations can take place while working, and attachments can be added or taken from Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive. There are calendar features, dashboards, and to-do lists. Asana proves you don’t have to be in the office to take care of any daily tasks.
This is another approach to working with anyone on a remote basis, especially in a team-oriented environment. All information is available to everyone on the team, including documents, notes, and plans in a format that can be easily searched. Gliffy integration is another feature that provides for a way to do wireframes quickly.
Taskworld helps you to manage projects and stay on top of tasks and subtasks. Plus, it has an evaluation feature so you can measure and give feedback on job performance, which is still important regardless of the changing workplace structure.
This tool provides an effective way to screen share meetings as well as conduct easy video conferencing. Join.me proves that there really isn’t a need to commute in to the office for a meeting anymore, saving considerable time that can be spent on something much more productive.
While Slack is getting a lot of attention for what it offers in terms of a collaborative tool for remote workers, Flowdock has similar features as well as integrates with a lot of other cool apps you might already be using in your new workplace, such as Jira, GitHub, Basecamp, Asana, Assembla, Trello and many more.
In seeking an affordable, yet powerful CRM system that provides a way to organize and track all prospects and contacts as well as features that assist you with project management. It also offers a social CRM, which enables you to locate the social profiles of all your contacts in an efficient way without spending hours trying to sort through them.
Password management is critical for every company but especially those that employ remote workers. Passing around this sensitive information is necessary but can be handled much more effectively with a tool like Last Pass. Each employee has their own vault with the passwords they need to sign in remotely or access any type of cloud-based system the company uses.
Outro is a referral automation platform that speeds up how you find and identify new clients, employees, and investors. To further enhance your productivity, you can also export your other data and integrate it with all major CRM software.
While it may not sound that productive to recommend an app that lets you stream live TV, you can take advantage of multitasking by staying updated on the business channels offered in PlutoTV’s line-up that cover markets, industries, regulatory environments and trends like MSNBC, CNN, Bloomberg and more.
If your company keeps inventory or has a warehouse for its products, SystemID can add greater efficiency and coordination to what often remains focused on manual processes. Instead, the use of a barcode system with integrated inventory management control offers a way to reduce costs and speed all logistical tasks.
One of the biggest discoveries about the changing workplace was the idea that people tend to work better when they regularly change the environment around them. Therefore, working from home makes a person more productive than always being at the office. Now, those working at home are discovering that, over time, the home also gets stale. Workfrom provides a source to locate other places where work can be done in your local area, such as a coffee shop, co-working space, or other tech-friendly spot.
In the push to automate many tasks within a business, Due takes on numerous jobs related to project and time management, invoicing and estimates, and payment processing. This reduces human involvement, driving higher accuracy, speed, and productivity throughout all these critical business processes tied to cash flow.
Multiple Benefits in New Apps
In working with these types of apps, remote workers and their employers will discover further benefits from this changing workplace environment, including additional productivity, enhanced motivation, lower costs and greater revenue. Many studies have been done and are being done at this time which show us that having opportunities and flexibility in ones working hours and place of work is giving an added boost to work productivity. Finding the right tools to make all this work coordinate together is guiding that productivity.
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