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Authority Building

most-popular-90Authority on the web is one of the building blocks of SEO.  Being popular online helps raise your search results just as having high search results helps raise your popularity. Basically you need to be popular… to be popular. Not very useful advice – I know. But how do you break into this circle of privilege? You can actively work on authority building. In fact we will do it for you!

See our authority building service for details.

How Integrating Search & Social Ads Can Improve Your Revenue

In a recent study that explored search and social advertising campaigns, it was determined that customers who clicked on both search and social ads actually had 2x the conversion rates and a 26% increase in revenue per click when compared to users who only clicked on a search ad alone. What this means for advertisers is that by integrating both search and social campaigns together, you can expect to see more profitable sales, resulting in a greater return on investment! Read the article for a more in-depth look at how this integration can benefit your advertising campaigns.

http://marketingland.com/study-integrated-search-social-ads-80463

Google’s New Planning Tool: Databoard for Research Insights

Google recently launched a new tool to help marketers create meaningful and insightful infographics for clients.  Based on the statistics compiled from completed Google research, marketers can easily build presentations with the information provided. Topics vary from Youtube marketing data to understanding mobile search by consumers.

 At the moment, only 8 studies are available meaning that content is limited however we hope to see more added soon. Also, though you can easily share your nicely designed infographic via social networks and email, Google hasn’t made it easy to save it as a file!

Here’s an example of an infographic regarding the impact of a non-profit organization’s online presence on potential donors. It was pulled together in less than 10 minutes.

Try it out and let us know what you think.

What it means to be a Google Certified Partner

Google Certified Partner BadgeWhile looking through your current or potential SEO’s website, you may notice the Google Adwords Certified Partner Badge. This badge represents that the company currently has Google Adwords Certified employee/s, and has also met other important criteria to become recognized as an official Google Partner.

Google Certification Benefits

In order to become Google Adwords Certified, an individual must pass two exams: Advertising Fundamentals, plus either of the Advanced Search or Advanced Display exams. This signifies that through extensive studying and experience, a company is more adept at providing a client with industry recognized training. Ultimately, this will help to improve your campaign performance across the Search and Display Networks.

This can also help to reassure the client that they are dealing with a dedicated and trustworthy company. The company invests time and money into the skills development of their employees in an effort to offer their clients advanced account maintenance and recommendations within the Adwords system. These techniques are applied to bring maximum results to a client’s campaigns.

To read more details on the process of becoming Google Certified, please see our post about how to become a Google Certified Partner.

How to Become a Google Certified Partner

With the many updates that Google has recently posted for the Certification program, we thought we would give you a little insight into what these changes entail and what the process is to become Google Certified. Now, instead of learning and taking exams through the Google Certification Program (GCP); users and companies will now have to create/transfer an account to the new Google Partners program.

Google Certified Partner BadgeImplemented Changes

•  As of September 30, 2013, all access to your GCP account will be read-only information.
•  A Google Partners account will be required in order to take exams to become certified.
•  Exams will no longer cost $50.00 USD. All exams and certifications taken via Google Partners will now be free!
•  Your previous exam history and certification status will transfer from GCP to Google Partners if you join using the same Google account.
•  Certifications earned through GCP will remain valid through the expiration date.

Google Exams
To become Google certified, you must pass at least 2 exams; first the Advertising Fundamentals, then you can choose between either the Advanced Search or Advanced Display exams.

Advertising Fundamentals
In order to pass this exam, you need to have a passing score of at least 85%. You will be given 90 questions that must be completed within 120 minutes. Study material for this exam contains 11 lessons that can be found on the Google Partners site: Advertising Fundamentals Lessons
While the Fundamentals exam covers the basic aspects of Adwords, it is highly recommended that you study all 11 lessons.
Once passed, this exam is valid for 2 years.

Advanced Search
If you pass the Advertising Fundamentals exam, you can then choose between the Advanced Search exam and the Advanced Display exam.

The Advanced Search exam requires you to have a passing score of at least 80%. You will be asked 99 questions over 120 minutes. The study material contains 9 lessons that you should study explicitly. This is no easy exam. The questions are created to challenge even the most experienced Adwords users, and require you to answer with the best practices…not necessarily the methods that you as an individual apply. The study material can be found at: Advanced Search Lessons
Once passed, this exam will be valid for 1 year.

Advanced Display
If you choose to become certified specializing in the Display Network, then you should choose the Advanced Display exam. This exam requires a 70% passing score and will ask you 90 questions over 120 minutes. There are 4 lessons in the study guide: Advanced Display Lessons and once again, it is highly recommended that you cover all of the lessons while preparing to take this exam.

Once passed, this exam will be valid for 1 year.

Once you pass the 2 exams, your certification status will be updated on Google Partners (and your affiliated company) within 24-48 hours.

Failed an exam? Not to worry, they are free to take but you will have to wait 7 days to retake a failed exam.

Why is Content Marketing important?

What is content marketing and how can it help your business?

Content marketing is the creation and publication of valuable and notable information to a specific audience. Ideally, this information will in turn make your company a go-to resource in your industry. 

Whole Foods Market logoA really great example of a company that’s done this right is Whole Foods Market. They’ve put together a blog with contributors including their management staff, employees, suppliers and partners. Blog post content ranges from how to buy food in bulk, tips on how to get your kids to eat better and of course, mouth-watering recipes for the groceries you can pick up at your closest Whole Foods Market store. If you succeed at doing something like Whole Foods Market has, you’ll have accomplished one or more objectives including brand awareness, lead generation, client acquisition, customer retention and engagement – just to name a few!

Remember that everything that you put forth on your website, social media channels and even in your traditional marketing communications should convince your audience that you are a valuable source of information that responds to their needs or offers solutions to their problems. Instead of continuously selling to your audience, you’re instead teaching them about what they want to learn about– and by doing this, your company will be regarded as a more trustworthy (and likeable!) source of information.

Lego Logo

For example, how does toy giant LEGO continue to engage their young clientele? They offer a free magazine subscription with sneak peeks of new LEGO sets, games, competitions, comics, secret online content and more. This added value easily keeps their young fans coming back!

How do you create memorable and engaging content?

  1. First of all, this might be obvious, but make it relevant to your brand and what you offer. You want to provide value-added information – for example, if your company is in the travel industry, you want to be able to provide advice on having an easy experience booking trips or offer insider tips about cities to visit.
  2. Next, make sure that your content marketing is inspirational and most importantly, relatable. Your readers need to get excited about what they’re reading and not feel like it’s a sales pitch to get them to make a purchase. Be sure that the voice you’re using matches your audience’s – read everything you can online to catch this– everything from your competitors to key industry players’ blogs to absorbing all feedback from current customers – and adapt accordingly.

A perfect example of how a company has generated buzz-worthy content marketing is McDonald’s Canada’s “Our Food. Your Questions.” website. What they’ve done is created a space for Canadians to ask any questions about their famous menu – everything from why their hamburgers don’t rot to why they don’t carry Halal food. You can imagine the amount of interest consumers have in these answers – some of these are questions that have been asked for years! All of the responses are personalized to the individual who asked the question and is written in a manner that’s easily understood – even if answered by their food scientists! And of course, beneath each reply on the website are conveniently placed icons for Facebook, Twitter and Google+ so you can share the answer.

Once you’ve become this great source of information, it’s natural that potential customers will start referring to you – just like the McDonald’s example above – using your information to share with their counterparts online and through social media, giving you free word of mouth publicity. This is where Google jumps in and starts to pick up on who has started to share your content via social networks or blogs or other qualified websites, helping you move your way up in search engine rankings. Great content marketing is the key to making your business an authority in your industry and needs to be included as part of an essential marketing strategy to your business’ success.

We hope this has been helpful and we invite you to get started on becoming a voice of authority today!

 

Parallax Web Design Presents a Major Handicap for SEO

Generally speaking, a parallax scrolling website is a visually stimulating, one-page website presenting users with a background moving slower or faster than the foreground. To give you an idea, AWWWards have identified the top 20 parallax websites of 2013 here.

Disadvantages of SEO

What’s tricky about these engaging websites is that the design usually includes only one long page of HTML and one URL that can be linked from search engines. Every time a user searches for a specific item, they land on the main page of the parallax website and not necessarily for what they were looking for. This means that there is only one meta title and meta description to optimize. Further, when choosing the main keywords for the SEO of a website, we focus on up to a few keywords per page. In this case, the site is only one page so this provides a limited number of keywords that you can expect the site to come up for in search results.

An SEO Solution

One way to counteract this problem would be to identify what content is important by deciding what would and wouldn’t be searched for by a user. For example, if a website specializes in baked goods, we would have to identify the major keywords that should rank well for the business online. Let’s say that the website focuses on selling cupcakes, birthday cakes and wedding cakes. In addition to the main page of the website that has all of the information including contact information, photos etc., on a long parallax page, some secondary pages with details on cupcakes, birthday cakes and wedding cakes can be created that could then be optimized for its own keywords, title tags, descriptions and other customized content. What’s important to remember here is that content should not be duplicated from the main page. The baked goods will only be identified on the main page, with details such as cupcake flavours and pricing included on its respective page.

By doing this, one main page with parallax design along with additional pages for the actual products will be created. This is a great way to integrate the trendy parallax scrolling web design with a conventional multi-page website without causing an issue for SEO.

13 Year Anniversary!

Red Carpet Web Promotion started 13 years ago on June 1st 2000. Remember Y2K? Some of our first projects were creating affiliate websites for posters. Thanks to all of our clients, many of which were our uncles and family friends at the beginning. Thanks to our employees, contractors and families!