All posts in Search Engine Marketing News

It is cliché, sure, but we’re about to start a new year, and there really is no easier time to set some new SEO goals for your website. You have 12 months and 4 quarters in front of you to track growth and get into a groove of building your business online. Here are a few tips Evolving Interactive recommends for staying ahead of the search engine marketing game in 2012.

1. Keep up with changes – One of the most valuable tools for me this year has been subscribing and checking in daily with Google’s Small Business blog. In 2011, we’ve had the Panda update, the launch of Google +, a push to develop local businesses, and much more. Subscribe and check in daily to learn about the latest changes that Google is making to (hopefully) make life easier on small businesses.

2. Monthly Brainstorming – Make SEO a priority. Obviously, it’s important. As you look at monthly numbers and reports, think about where you want to improve, and set a few goals in place to get you there (or on the right track) by the start of next month. For example, if you’re seeing growth with a few keywords but are stagnant with others, focus your strategies on some new keywords. It’s going to be more valuable if you’re on top for a wide range of terms. Expand the conversation to include others on your team. Maybe some unconventional ideas will be the shot in the arm you need.

3. Monitor your growth – Think of your most important keyword terms. When you type them into a search engine search bar, what do you see on the results? Are you on the first page? Do some research to figure out how you’re ranking at the start of the new year. There are several tools out there that can help you do this. It’s a good idea to check in with the rankings every month or so to see if you are improving or not. A steady drop in rankings may mean your website has other problems, like broken links or missing pages. Of course, moving up means you’re doing something correctly. Part of the initial consultation we offer at Evolving Interactive is a ranking report for the keywords you pick and we recommend.  If you’d like to know more about SEO rankings and how it affects your business, contact us for a free consultation to get you started in 2012.

And since we’re already on the subject of the new year, all of us at Evolving Interactive want to thank you for keeping up with us at the Evolving Interactive Blog this year. We appreciate your guest blog posts, your comments, and your interest. We look forward to writing for (and with) you in 2012. Happy New Year!

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We are almost at the two year anniversary of our SEO Blog on the Evolving Interactive website. In the search marketing industry, a lot can change in a period of weeks, let alone two whole years. (Check back with us on January 14 2012 for a special blog post.) However, even in this ever changing industry, there is a golden rule that everyone, SEO’s and small businesses alike, should follow. Optimize your website for your customers first, and the search engines second.

In the early days of search, the black hat tactics that made a website look juicy to a search engine seem archaic and obvious now. Keyword stuffing, putting colored keywords on a same color background, spamming comment boards (this still happens, sadly and comically); and the list goes on. All of these tactics were used to help boost the strength of a website that really had nothing to offer to people / potential customers once they got to the site. As search engines caught on to these “strategies

Guest Bloggers wanted! Evolving Interactive is now accepting guest blog posts. To submit your post, check out our new resource for guest bloggers. It has suggested topics, posting guidelines, and instructions on how to get your story posted as quickly as possible.

In return, Evolving Interactive will link directly to your site or your blog on every post that you submit, as well as promoting it. So head to the Guest Blogger page and get started on your post today.

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Google has been making (its own) news over the past two weeks, but it’s all been good news. Google is calling more attention to the efforts it has put in to streamlining the local search experience from the business owner perspective. While Google has always been the leader of local search, it has been no secret that many in the SEO industry, as well as business owners, have had more than their share of frustrations trying to optimize and manage their local profiles. Now, it would seem those times are a-changin’.

First Google announced that it was introducing a new support feature for its Google Places page. For place page owners and operators, this new help system provides a walk-through of possible errors that could be wrong with your listing. The checklist will help owners troubleshoot. For the more experienced local optimization types out there, there will also be the ability to send a note to a Google Analyst who will respond to the issue. Other search engines like Bing and Yahoo have had service support in place already; though neither have the volume of searches that Google sees.

Next, Google unveiled another new feature that will pre-emptively help Place page users. Google will now send an email that will notify of changes being made to the listing by outside sources. Google has always used valuable data providers like Yelp or Insider Pages to gather information about a business, as well as feedback or changes provided by any Google user on the local pages themselves. Now, when impending changes will alter a listing, a business owner will receive an email explaining the impending changes. Google says this is to keep business owners from having to log in to places every time there is an update, in an effort to keep the most recent and relevant information at the pages forefront. Business owners will still have the opportunity to log-in and manually override these changes with the edit option.

These changes come at the end of a long summer of Google Places in the spotlight for the wrong reasons. As Google tried to promote a new feature regarding businesses open or closed statuses, the story that actually got called into question was how easy it was to report a listing closed. With no support at the time, business owners would have to check in often with their listing to learn if a disgruntled or misinformed customer or competitor took it upon themselves to close their business (on the Places page). After a stunt by a local expert, Google addressed the flaws. But with these new support systems in place, these flaws should be much fewer.

With all of the changes happening to the local world lately, Google may be protecting its position as the leader with these support features. Google has never ignored its users; it simply just doesn’t have the manpower to handle every request that is asked of local support. The real hard pill to swallow was that it seemed as though it was ignoring users helpless against never ending “pending review

I guess it’s a good thing for the industry that the letters S-E-O are seeing an influx in news articles, especially in heavy hitters like the New York Times. In the last few months, I can remember reading several articles about the dark side of our otherwise under-the-radar industry. There was the article about the terribly negative reviews benefiting a sunglasses salesman / customer service pariah. Then there are the articles about link schemes that put the big businesses at the top of every search result, until they got caught.

I guess it’s a better thing that Google also reads these articles, because that seems to be the only time white hat SEO’s see results they’ve been clamoring for.  The most recent article was again posted by The Times, and brought to light Google’s shortcomings in their local search section, a section Google has been actually been placing more value on in recent months. In an effort to keep listings as up to date as possible, Google allows searchers to request that a business’ status be updated to “reported to be closed

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