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Why You Need SEO

Why You Need SEO

Published: August 10, 2016

Author: John

local seo for local businesses

What is SEO? Many of you know SEO as a service or process of ranking your website higher on Google, Yahoo, or Bing’s search results. As a matter of fact, that’s exactly what SEO is. But I’ll bet you every salesman you ever spoke to told you the same thing. “I’ll get you on the first page of Google and you’ll see tons of return”. Right? Here’s a little secret. Just because you have a few keywords on the first page doesn’t necessarily mean your business will suddenly be flooding with customers. Though SEO does help with increased visibility and traffic, it takes a carefully planned out strategy to determine which keywords are best for your location, competition, target customers, etc. Bringing traffic to your website is important and SEO is a much needed factor to creating awareness for your business online.

Now, let’s talk about conversions. How are we going to convert the traffic going to your website into actual sales? Here’s what most salesman don’t tell you. While having a solid SEO strategy, you also need a strong remarketing plan. It’s crucial that all of the potential customers who are shopping around that visited and left your website without taking action are still being reminded why they considered you in the first place. This is why we designed a solution that allows businesses to take advantage of both traffic and conversions. While implementing a strong SEO plan, we offer a fully automated CRM (customer relationship management) software that remarkets to your customers through text message and email. This software guarantees testimonials, 5 star reviews (Yelp, G+, and Facebook), new customers, repeat business, and referrals.

Being a small business owner myself, I understand that every prospect, lead, and sale matters. If you’re ready to grow your business, use a strategy that’s proven and will make your investment count.

 

SEO vs. PPC – Why I Made the Switch from Google Adwords

SEO vs. PPC – Why I Made the Switch from Google Adwords

Published: June 8, 2016

Author: John

seo vs. ppc

Let me start off by saying that Google Adwords is not a bad marketing tool at all. I honestly believe that there are instances where a Pay-Per-Click model such as Adwords could benefit a business greatly.  That being said, my experience has taught me that there are businesses that the PPC model just does not work for. Of course, this is largely dependent on the industry, location, competition, years of establishment, target market, size, etc. I mean I could go on and on with a list of things that could justify why any business should or should not use Adwords. But today, I’m here to talk about one of my absolute favorite types of digital marketing, Search Engine Optimization. For those of you who do not know or have not heard of Search Engine Optimization, or SEO as we techies like to call it, you are missing out on a lot of fun. Let me explain SEO to you in a short story that will help you understand it better without putting you to sleep.

As you all know, I live in a pretty amazing city called New York and as a New Yorker on a Friday night I just can’t get myself to stay home. So, I called up a few friends for a little weekend adventure. Only problem is we have no idea where we want to go. Like most people looking for a local business, the first thing I grabbed was my phone, opened Google, and typed in this keyword, “bars near me”.  The results page pops up and like the other 95% of Googlers, I skipped past the Adwords section at the top. Here is the best part. I was able to pick out our destination within the first couple minutes of searching and my focus was only at the top of the first page. If you’re a business owner that’s reading this and asking yourself, “how do I get to the top of the search results?” That my friend is what SEO is for. Many business owners don’t understand how important online presence is these days. Having your website rank at the top of Google organically for high traffic keywords is a game changer and can bring a steady flow of new business through your doors. 

I put together a list to show you why I made the switch from Google Adwords to SEO and why I think you should at least consider implementing an SEO strategy for your business.

  1. PPC means Pay Per Click. You are literally paying for every single click that people make regardless of your conversions. SEO is unlimited.
  2. Only 5-7% of the search traffic clicks on Google Adwords. About 95% click on organic listings.
  3. SEO is more cost effective than PPC. Though SEO is a long term strategy, I have seen more of my clients generate higher returns on SEO than PPC.
  4. You may rank immediately for Adwords keywords, but once your budget is used up you disappear. SEO will keep you ranking permanently as long it is correctly implemented and maintained.

Here is an example of how much Google can charge per click for various keywords and industries.

car wreck attorney – $670.44 per click! This is outrageous!

This is exactly why you need to find a great SEO company that you can trust to drive revenue through not only the traffic coming from first page rankings but also by reducing your monthly marketing budget and investing it into something that makes more sense and will deliver a greater impact for your business.

Fill out our Consultation Form and let us show you what a great SEO campaign could do for your business!

Digital Marketing Juice for Lawyers

Digital Marketing Juice for Lawyers

Published: June 1, 2016

Author: Zach

seo for lawyers

We recently signed a big client in the Chicago area, a personal injury lawyer. He was referred to us by a client of ours, another law firm within Chicago, and when he initially reached out he was jaded and skeptical to say the least. He informed me of his advertising budget, which was well over 5 figures, and he told me how frustrated he was with Adwords, bad SEO companies, and watching his budget burn up in a matter of a few days. This seemed strange to me, but when I saw what he was talking about, I myself was flabbergasted. Upon doing research prior to our initial consultation, I found his ad on Google Adwords. I looked up the Cost Per Click (CPC for you techie lawyers) for his Adwords listing for one of his keywords: Best Car Accident Lawyer….$439 per click!

I’ve seen some outrageous costs per click in my time doing SEO, but this is by far the most ridiculous. At first I was in disbelief, then I was in anger. How could Google price gouge lawyers in private practice in such a way? Then the reality sunk in. If you have a $10,000 advertising budget, that ad would stay up for a whopping 22 clicks. This just didn’t make sense to me, so I had to write this. I will say this now and stand behind it with absolute certainty and conviction. If you are spending more than $2,000 on a pay per click campaign, STOP. With the same amount invested, any decent SEO company can and will get you on the first page of Google organically and permanently.

A few facts to consider while you ponder that thought. The click-through rate is extremely low for Adwords. Some report it as high as 7%, some as low as 2%, but either way you look at it, 93-98% of searchers are going right down to the organic section. My second argument: SEO is permanent. Adwords will make you king of the mountain for a day, but a properly executed SEO plan will make you king of your market, forever. And I know your objection: SEO takes too much time and Adwords gets me on top now. Granted. However, you won’t be singing that song when it’s June 10 and you’ve already tore through your month’s budget, and you have nothing to show for it.

So here’s the solution. Find a good SEO company. I know that may be easier said than done, and trust me I’ve heard every nightmare story about hack SEO firms out there, but there are ways of weeding out the bad. Ask about content. Ask about backlinks. Any SEO worth their salt knows that these two factors are by far the most important when earning the top spot on Google, especially for competitive industries in big markets like law firms in Chicago. If an SEO firm tip toes around the backlink question or the content question, move on. The good ones will be proud to tell you how they build their backlinks and how they produce their content. This will help you find the right firm. Or you can start here, with EFEZ Media. Get a free consultation on your website, and we’ll at least help point you in the right direction. If nothing else, we can help your firm put itself in a good position long term.

The changes of Mobile Search.

How Mobile Search Changed the Game

Published: July 13, 2015

Author: Zach

changes of mobile search

The introduction of smart phones and mobile devices has been a game changer in how people access information.  Your customers are no longer bound to the desktop or laptop to have unlimited access to the internet, and information is freely and readily available anywhere they have a data connection.  If a consumer wants to find an Italian restaurant, they open their Yelp app.  If they need to find a locksmith or an auto repair shop, they open Google Maps or Apple Maps.  This is had a substantial impact on how companies advertise, and those that adapt have a definitive advantage over those that don’t.  So the question remains, is your business listed where mobile users are searching?  Below you’ll find a few resources your customers are using to find businesses, and as a business owner, it is imperative you are standing out on these pages.

Google Maps/Apple Maps

Both of these applications are standard features on all mobile devices for Apple and Android, and are invaluable resources for their users.  These powerful applications provide accurate navigation, show satellite images, and also provide local business listings built into the map.  So now, if a customer is out and about, they can open one of these maps and search for a business they need, get driving directions there, and even read reviews on those businesses before they go.  Any business that isn’t listed in these applications is missing out on a huge contingent of customers who are actively searching for their services locally.

Yelp

Speaking of reviews, this is the largest consumer review site in the world.  With over 250 million downloads, the Yelp app is a trusted resource for consumers to research the businesses they are considering to use.   More important than being listed on these sites, businesses must be careful to protect their ratings on these sites so that their customers are reading good information about the company.  That may seem an impossible task for some business owners, but there are resources out there that are built to protect a business’ online reputation so when your customers find your profile, they find you with a big “5 Stars” under your name.

Industry Specific Applications

It seems like every industry has an application that users can download to look up local businesses.  For restaurants, there’s Open Table.  For home improvements, there’s Angie’s List and Home Advisor.  It’s super important that as a business, you are aware of what mobile applications your customers are using to look up your services, and they your name is in those applications.

These are just a few of the resources customers use to find businesses while they are on the run.  If you are unsure of whether your business is in these areas, or that the information in these listings are an accurate representation of your business, reach out to us.  We can ensure that not only is your business listed in these areas, but that your business is the obvious choice in your market for the services you provide.  Click here for a Free Consultation with one of our marketing experts, and we’ll show you how we can help you dominate the Mobile Search market.

Get to know Google Analytics.

Get to Know Google Analytics

Published: July 15, 2015

Author: Zach

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a powerful data tracking tool for your website.  It provides one of the most robust and complete set of data analytics that tracks everything from hits, conversions, and bounce rates for each and every page on your website.  It is a trusted resource for SEO experts, Web Developers, and business owners alike to track and assess user behavior resulting from implementing different changes within their websites.  And the best part?  Despite this being one of the most comprehensive analytic tools on the market, it is 100% free for its users!

If you’ve ever logged into the Google Analytics dashboard, it’s easy to go cross-eyed trying to make sense of all of the data that it offers.  Here is some useful information in case you wanted to roll up your sleeves and dive into the Analytics of your website.

  • Sessions – The total number of “hits” within the selected date range.  This is the raw number of how many visits your site received within the date range.
  • Users – How many users have visited the site within the selected date range.  This number represents the total number of people who have visited the site, where the “sessions” statistic is the total number of visits from each user.
  • Pageviews – Total number of pages visited within the selected date range.  Where a session is a visit to the site, this is how many pages were viewed total over the selected range.
  • Pages/Session –  This is the average number of pages that are visited for each visit to the website.  It is equal to the total pageviews/sessions.
  • Avg. Session Duration – This is the average time each user stays on your website when they visit.  Obviously, the higher this number is, the better your website is.
  • Bounce Rate – Bounce rate measures how many users leave your website without interacting with it.  If someone comes to a page on your website and doesn’t click on anything and leaves, this is a “bounced” visit.
  • % New Sessions – An estimate of the total number of new website visitors compared to total visits.  Out of all the people that came to your website, how many were brand new visits that never came to your site before?
  • Conversion Rate – Out of all the visits to your website, what percentage fill out your call to action, whether its subscribing to your blow or filling out a contact form.  This is the end goal of your website, to have it generate a lead for you.

This is a basic overview of some of the common terminology used within Google Analytics that will help you understand some of the data in there.  On top of this, there are hundreds of other insights and analytics provided by Google Analytics that can really help you understand where your online marketing strategy is succeeding and falling short, not just on your website.  There have been books written on correlating and analyzing this data, and it’s a far broader topic than can be encompassed in one blog post.  However, if you are interested to learn how your analytics data is affecting your bottom line, or you are unsure whether or not you even have Google Analytics for your website, reach out to us.  Click here to contact us and let us know what your questions are, and a member of our analytics team will reach out to you and break down your numbers, and show you how we can maximize the efficiency of your website.

What is Local SEO, is it important ?

What is Local SEO and why is it important?

Published: July 13, 2015

Author: Zach

local seo for local businesses

What exactly is local SEO, and why should it be on your priority list as a business owner?  Simply stated, local SEO is search engine optimization applied to your website to help it rank better within your local geographic area.  This is extremely important for any business that seeks to attract customers within their service area.  So the question is, when your local customers go to Google to search for a business that provides your services, are you among those options?  The reality is, most local businesses are not among those options, and there are many reasons why.  Below you find some of these reasons, and what can be done to help your website rank better and gain more visibility on the major search engines.

Your Website:

When Google is determine how to rank websites, they do an exhaustive and extensive analysis of your website.  Is is SEO friendly?  Is it mobile responsive?  Unfortunately, most websites fail the test through no fault of the owner.  The reason is, many of the older website designs were not built to accommodate  the recent changes to Google’s algorithm.  If you built a website more than 3 years ago, chances are it wasn’t built to adapt to the screen of a smart phone or iPad.  If your website isn’t mobile responsive, that is, adaptable to different size screens, Google will push you down in their rankings in favor of a more mobile friendly website.  Also, certain analytic tools and files that need to be implemented in your website such as Google Analytics, an XML sitemap, and a robot.txt file are all important to help Google analyze your website more easily, and if they aren’t there, you will not rank as high as a website that contains these files.  Last but not least, all the back end code and content of the website needs to be written to cater to the keywords that your customers are searching when looking for businesses like yours.  For the most part, most business owners do not know how to implement these changes in their websites, so it is imperative that you partner with a company who can implement all of these necessary factors to make sure your business is ranking locally.

Citations and Backlinks

When we consult business owners, most don’t know what a citation or a backlink is, but the reality is that it is one of the most important factors to SEO implementation.  Simply put, a backlink is a link going back to your website from a different website.  Examples of backlinks could be a social media page with a link to your website, a directory listing linking back to your site, or a link coming from some other trusted source within your industry.  Backlinks can vary in quality greatly and some lower quality backlinks can actually hurt the ranking within your website.  Google tends to reward quality backlinks coming from very reputable sources on the web, but if your backlinks are coming from spam-based sites, they will actually punish you because of that.  These citations and backlinks can be extremely time consuming to setup, which is why most business owners neglect them, but the reality is without them, your website just won’t rank.

Content

There’s a saying in SEO: Content is King!  Websites that are consistently adding content to their site, whether it be via a blog, a press release, or updates to their pages, are ranking better than those websites that haven’t been changed in months or even years.  The way Google sees it, businesses that are actively adding and enhancing the content of their website are better options for searchers than a website that hasn’t been changed in years.  Quite simply, it is imperative that fresh content is being added to your site to help it rank better than your competitors locally.

Efez Media prides itself on implementing a comprehensive and aggressive SEO plan that caters to all facets of Local SEO described here.   We provide SEO friendly and mobile responsive website layouts, quality backlinks, and relevant content for blogs and press releases.  We have a proven track record of helping local businesses rank high within their service areas, and we can do the same for you.  Click here to get a free SEO Analysis of your website, and let us show you how we can grow your business.