It’s an error in judgment that is often made by many business owners over the course of their careers. All too often a person is quick to dismiss a lack of results from a new initiative as being representative of a no-win battle. Before new strategies can be proven one way or the other, these operations end up being dropped in favor of tried-and-true tactics that yield consistent but altogether few results. Although there is certainly something to be said for cutting losses before they go spiraling out of control, most people poorly assess the potential strength of their advertising and miss out on the rewards they could reap with the right approach.

The same can easily be said about many businesses trying to tackle organic SEO marketing. After the recent developments with Google’s Panda and Penguin algorithms, increasingly more companies are coming to the realization that the same old tactics that were once used to climb up search engine result pages (SERPs) have become antiquated or even completely useless. Now some companies are turning almost exclusively to pay-per-click and other forms of inorganic for the bulk of their internet advertising efforts. However, by eschewing full SEO campaigns, they too end up significant SERP presence.

Having the Right Response to the New Environment

While we’ve already covered how to work within the new constraints set by Google over at Penguin Watch, what is really going to matter most for companies looking to maintain or improve their standings is the approach itself. Yes, duplicate content, hidden links, and other unethical SEO development methods have fallen by the wayside (rightly so), but it’s the mentality that’s being applied to the new content that will ultimately determine how the future unfolds.

When in doubt, business owners should be producing websites that follow a strict set of guidelines:

  • All new content made, be they blogs or additional webpages, should be interesting and useful to readers. This will encourage shares on social media and help give the content real web presence.
  • All content should be original in both copy and purpose. This keeps pages from getting de-ranked by Google and also improves the likelihood of certain keyword groups leading to immediate search results.
  • The end user is your focus, not a site crawler. When all is said and done, Google’s algorithms are intended to get its users to get to pages they want in as little time as possible. If you can get these users to find your page and then stay on it, you’ve succeeded in your efforts.

Finally, it’s important that companies new to the world of SEO and online marketing turn to experts in the field instead of going it alone. While there is a wealth of advice and general tips out there for how to run your own organic campaigns, the best methods and techniques change constantly. Always seek out the aid of a SEO company with years of experience for the results you want.

MOUNT LAUREL, NJ – Kenneth Wisnefski, founder and CEO of WebiMax, the leading search engine optimization firm, announced an impressive first-half of 2012, and further indicated that “WebiMax is strengthening its processes and strategically revitalizing our products to better serve clients and continue to gain precious market share in the online marketing sector.”

According to a research study conducted by eMarketer, online advertising spending will surpass print advertising for the first time in 2012, and is projected to reach $40 billion.  Furthermore, online advertising spending is expected to reach $62 billion by 2016.

Wisnefski announced “2012 is a pivotal year for online marketers because advertisers have had some time to digest the results of other online marketing initiatives they have seen, and are starting to understand its real impact on brand visibility, and ultimately their revenue.”

WebiMax is certainly feeling the impact of a growing industry as evidenced by their success in the first half of 2012.  Revenue is up more than 5,600 percent from 2008, and the company is strengthening its balance sheet and income statement in order to further expand operations and continue to reinvest in the company including key areas of personnel and technology / innovation.  In addition, the company is on-pace to surpass 2011 revenues by a projected 150 percent.

In June, WebiMax announced the addition of Bill Slawski.  Slawski is the owner and operator of SEO by the Sea, a leading online resource for industry news, announcements, and statistics.  Mr. Slawski covers Google, Inc. and other related industry movers.  In addition, he successfully predicted the launch of Google Plus, a social networking site launched by Google in November of 2011.

In a recent company email, Wisnefski announced “Ultimately, in today’s ever competitive global market, it is very easy for businesses to fail from poor performance.  Fortunately, WebiMax has been able to leverage a growing industry and refine our processes with the changes to the global market to compete with larger and well-funded organizations. The second half of 2012 looks promising for WebiMax, as the company continues to reinvest in their core products and services and personnel.  In addition, the company has experience a 200 percent increase in new client acquisition in 2012.

About WebiMax:

Led by serial web entrepreneur Kenneth Wisnefski, WebiMax has become the leader in online marketing services, including a focus on Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, Paid Search and PPC, Website Design and Development, Reputation Management, and more. The company was selected as one of America’s Most Promising Companies (2011) by Forbes Magazine and recently awarded one of Philadelphia’s Fastest Growing Companies (2012 and 2011) by the Philadelphia Business Journal.  WebiMax employs over 100 personnel in 12 offices including 8 U.S. based, and 4 International. Visit http://www.webimax.com/ for more information.

By now, business owners have learned a thing or two about what a SEO company can achieve.  However, the services needed to further a company’s online presence and drive conversion rates differ from entity to entity.   While each situation differs, there are a still several elements found in any successful SEO campaign that will always have a positive impact.

Content

Marketing content online is a far different process from creating standard ads.  A brand’s content does not have to specifically focus on offered products or services but may simply emphasize the company or industry itself.  While press releases and other traditional forms of marketing certainly come to mind, there are in fact other ways to present a business than simply puffing out one’s chest and boasting of accomplishments. Increasingly more websites are creating original content for their online properties that includes, but is not limited to, blogs, case studies, articles by respectable industry members, and more.

Social Media

Social media offers a wealth of marketing strategies for almost any business. Beyond being able to connect directly to potential customers and partners, networks like Facebook and Google+ also function as delivery platforms for the content your business has created. Although your web domains may see decent traffic without the aid of social networks, it never hurts to post your original content on these sites. If anything, the structure of social media means that anything shared or “liked” by users will receive temporary spotlights. This can prove invaluable in getting more people to see your content.

PPC

PPC (or pay-per-click) services are geared toward traditional advertising, much like billboards, and yet are much easier to track in metrics.  PPC is a great initiative for companies that need startup traffic for their site.  Alternatively, it’s a great method to attract attention to a special sale or brand-wide campaign.  Most people seek an SEO optimization company to handle PPC needs as the process demands diligence and a devoted staff to be successful.

Link Building

Incoming links from other authoritative websites send positive signals to search engines.  It lets them know other websites find yours to be important.  Often, a SEO company will launch link building campaigns for clients, seeking these highly authoritative sites.  The process involves making connections in addition to finding good fits related to client products and services.

These are just a few ways that a company can benefit from SEO practices. If you wish to learn more about these processes, I can be contacted directly at jwersits@webimax.com.

While it’s important to hire an SEO company that’s committed to working for you, since the release of Google’s new algorithm, Penguin, it’s crucial more than ever that you select an SEO company that is following organic SEO practices.

Since the webspam algorithm launched, businesses should be cautious that the SEO company they choose doesn’t perform black hat techniques as this will result in a penalty from Google. Sites that are penalized will be removed from Google’s index, thus becoming invisible to search engines.

No business wants to invest money, time and trust into an SEO company only for their business to be ruined. Receiving a penalty from Google not only results in your site being removed from Google’s index but will significantly hurt your business’s reputation.

The best way to avoid receiving a penalty from Google is to hire a quality SEO company that isn’t going to cheat the search system. Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind when searching for an SEO company that’s committed towards working for you and won’t leave your business damaged:

Company background
You can start by researching the background of the company. Learn about when the company started, their mission and philosophy, how many clients they’ve worked for, the types of campaigns they perform, their achievements and awards, and the management team. You can do this by checking out the company website and researching the company on search engines. This will help you get a feel for SEO the company.

What do you want to achieve?
When you turn to an SEO company to work for you, of course they will jump at the opportunity to gain a new client. But, don’t let their words alone lure you in. You should determine ahead of time what you want to achieve. Think about your objectives and what you want to gain from the SEO company. Whether you’re looking to increase traffic to your site or want your website appear higher in the SERPs, you should have an objective.

What’s their take on what you’re looking for?
After you discuss your objective, let the SEO company impress you with their knowledge of SEO and what measures or tactics they believe should or shouldn’t be used to help you reach your results. A company that’s truly dedicated towards helping you won’t just give you what you want, but what you need. They will explain to you the best practices and best approach to help you achieve what you’re aiming to reach.

What strategies do they follow?
While the SEO company may not be able to give you a nail on the head explanation of how they would approach your campaign, you can ask them about their common strategies and tactics. You should ask about the keyword selection process, how they measure competition, how content is created onsite and offsite, how backlinks are formed, and every strategy they’d follow in an SEO campaign.

Also, this is the perfect opportunity to discuss the Penguin update. Ask them what they know of the Penguin update and how their company avoided being affected by the new algorithm. The more knowledge they have of the Penguin update and of Google’s algorithms is clearly a good sign.

Do they know the latest in SEO and have an obsession for analytical data?
The SEO company you choose should know the latest tactics in SEO and what work must be performed in order to help a site rank well. They should understand your target market, know how to reach your market, have a creative side to attract online audiences and know how to switch up an SEO strategy quickly if the current strategy isn’t yielding the results you’re looking for.

Also, the company should be literally obsessed with analytic data and measuring your campaign progress. You should be able to turn to them whenever and ask them of your progress and current rankings. Staying up-to-date with the latest in SEO should essentially be a lifestyle for an SEO company.

Do they communicate regularly?
You want a company that communicates with you regularly and informs you of your campaign progress.  While the company may be working to service you, this is your company’s reputation on the line. Also, don’t be hesitant to question the steps they take or ask them to explain something. SEO companies understand that business owners aren’t SEO experts.

So, while you’re on the search for an SEO company to work for you, keep these guidelines in mind and help your business succeed.

The SEO and social landscapes continue to evolve, and this reality will never change. What does change though is the how – how social users connect with one another and how that can be leveraged for SEO gain. As a result, regarding this relationship SEO evolution usually, but not always, comes in response to changes in the social space. Once new platforms are used and understood, marketing potential is realized and put into action. Enter Pinwheel, the new soon-to-be-launched map-based social networking site that has gotten people talking this week. In his blog post today on SEOServices.com, JWersits introduces the site, its basics, and gives us a look at the sponsorship system that Pinwheel is looking to use for companies to gain exposure through the platform. Here, I’ll continue where he left off and look at how SEO companies could potentially use the platform for marketing gain once it emerges from beta and is fully rolled out both domestically and internationally.

Immediately, it is clear there is the SEO potential JWersits touched on for the companies that will look to utilize the platform to promote their business through the sponsorship system being put in place and by becoming “followed” by customers and encouraging engagement like possible feedback on customer experiences. Additionally, it can be used to drive targeted traffic in the same ways as other sharing sites and social media platforms. Notes and photos appear to be the main elements of the platform, so they can be optimized similarly. An SEO company can use targeted keywords and create fresh, quality content that reinforces other efforts of the overall campaign.

Wallet, Passport, Phone…Pinwheel?
It’s unclear at this point what industries will jump in to use Pinwheel. Early winners could be all things travel though, both domestically and internationally. It stands to reason that one of the most applicable uses of a map-based social networking site in an ever-shrinking world is to learn more about places you will be visiting by seeing photos and reading information regarding the very sites, attractions, and businesses that make the particular place what it is. According to information put out by Pinwheel itself, they plan to have functionality for the entire globe which opens up the platform to the international travel market. Travelers can look for notes and pictures from others who have been where the future travelers want to go. Suggestion can be given and great advice can be attained.

Further, businesses can promote themselves and what they offer to travelers in terms of restaurants, concert halls, theaters, attractions, menus, sites, and other points of interest. There is room here for travel companies to package virtual tours or lists of places and sites that their various tours go to or the attractions they recommend. Given the visual and categorical nature of the platform’s interface, there is great potential for unique functionality that would bring such lists or promotions to life for customers, providing them substance and real value.

The challenge is whether or not there will be enough information supplied by users and companies to keep people interested and coming back to learn and share. Businesses who want to target those in other countries want to employ international SEO (ISEO) practices keep in mind the language of their target audience(s) to optimize the content of their notes and make sure it works in conjunction with their other SEO, social media, and ppc (paid search) efforts. We will see if it takes off, but given its unique interface, it could make a fun one to work with.

Microsoft Advertising adcenter is evolving, and the latest changes move the platform closer to Google Adwords in an effort to make terminology and functionality similar to what marketers are using with Google. Ultimately, this is a good move for Microsoft, paid search, and those marketers managing pay per click campaigns and it shows that Microsoft is realistic in their understanding of adcenter’s place in paid search. The reality is that Microsoft’s advertising platform is second to Google’s Adwords, and acknowledging this allows Microsoft to use this fact to their advantage.

Aligning their functionality to that of the industry standard (Google Adwords) allows marketers to utilize both platforms without the need to learn new methodologies and applications. However, once familiarity and a degree of comfort are achieved by its users, Microsoft, in time, can introduce new features that differentiate it from Adwords in an effort to widen their offerings and slowly gain market share.  Microsoft has nothing to lose aligning their methods to Adwords at the moment as differentiation can happen in time.

What Exactly Has Changed?
We’ve discussed the Yahoo! and Microsoft Search Alliance and the adcenter before as Todd Bailey touched on its formation and the rolling out of the platform in the UK, France, and Ireland in an SEOServices.com piece from mid-January. Now, individual targeting options take the form of “language” and “target location” and the distribution channel “market” is being removed. Tina Kelleher in her adcenter blog post outlining the changes (complete with screenshots of the new features), details that marketers can receive a greater amount of relevant volume from the target location option that is now standard.

Marketers will be able to target users in a physical location as well as those that have intent to “do business in your target location areas.” This intent element widens the advertising opportunities but also allows for more focused pairings of pay per click with SEO campaigns that optimize on and off-site content to drive targeted traffic.

Those that have intent to do business in your target location area show it by the location detail they enter into their queries. Optimized content utilizing international SEO practices then become a central issue here. Further, marketers can choose all the countries where the selected language is spoken, “bundles” of countries, one specific country, and a certain state, territory, or city. Partnering with an SEO company to design a coordinated marketing effort that capitalizes on organic search of these queries as well presents additional opportunities. Doing so enables advertising companies to maximize their targeting goals.