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How to Use the New Google My Business

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Google+

Local Marketing - Google My BusinessHow You Can Effectively Use Google My Business

The most recent offering from the folks at Google is directly relevant to small and local business. Google My Business is a one-stop page for merchants to manage their presence on various Google products, from search, maps and Google+, Google Analytics, and even Hangouts. This is Google’s attempt to take some of Facebook’s thunder, by allowing its users to post and share news, events and images once, and see them populate over the entirety of their Google services.

Google says it’s working on transitioning all business accounts that are on Google+ or Places for Business, and you should see this in the near future. There’s also an Android app now, and the iPhone app will follow soon.

How does this all work together?

The one clear advantage this platform will have is that all of your information will be centrally located, and can be populated to your Google properties with no more effort on your part. In fact the first thing you see when you log into Google My Business is your company’s information that’s been taken from Google+, Places and Maps. You can easily edit to update or change any information you find there.

Next up is the heart of the operation. On one simple screen you can access the following:

  • Google+ Shares
  • Google Insights
  • Customer Reviews
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Hangouts

It’s easy to access these form here, and you can do anything you’d normally be able to do, even start a Hangout. You can reach those functions from this screen and add content, manage review and also start a Hangout.

Is this the end of Google+?

It might be too soon to tell what this all means for Google+. For now, just think of this as a change of address. At this point there doesn’t appear to be any loss of functions for Google+ and it may actually benefit from the automated atmosphere and better organization this provides.

Why Your Business Needs Mobile Marketing

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Mobile Marketing

mobile marketing for local businessCheck Out These 4 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Mobile Marketing

Here’s a fairly interesting statistic: people are now checking their mobile phones around 150 times a day on average. Is that a bigger or smaller number than you might’ve thought?

So what that boils down to for marketers is opportunity, and for those who’ve either missed it or stubbornly refused to go mobile, a neglected opportunity.

However you slice it, mobile marketing is here to stay. For those who need one final push over the cliff towards mobile, listed below are 4 reasons you’ll want to implement it as soon as possible.

See these 4 reasons mobile marketing can deliver for your business

  1. Mobile is the consumer’s weapon of choice – US mobile users are spending 23 percent more time on their mobile device than they did in 2013. You can also see this reflected in the chasm developing between mobile use and desktop: People spend 2 hours and 51 minutes a day on mobile versus 2 hours and 12 minutes on a desktop.
  2. Mobile is imminently sharable – Mobile is simply by its very nature social, and this translates into the possibility that your content could have a far wider reach than you might have envisioned when you created it. Once someone shares your content, their followers and friends have the chance to share it with theirs, and so on.
  3. Mobile users are more apt to take action – Mobile users are inclined to act. 70 percent of mobile searches lead to an action within only one hour! They are often out and about, searching for products and services, and you want to be on their radar.
  4. More people will see or open your messages – Since now over 90 percent of American adults own a cell phone and 42 percent have a tablet, more of your communications are going to be opened. Text messages can reach people where phones might not, and an astounding 98 percent of texts are opened within one hour.

We’ve morphed into a world where many more communications take place in a far more compressed time period. Your business has to be mobile to stay competitive.

5 Ways Your Content Can Make Conversions Easier

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Content Marketing, SEO

Content-MarketingNeed More Conversions? Look to Your Content!

Quite often content marketing and conversion optimization don’t even reside in the same paragraph, much less sentence, in terms of how we think about making it all work together.

There are ways to help your visitor get to that happy place where they’re grabbing their wallet, and completing the sale.

5 Ways to use content for better conversion rates

Use easy to follow navigation – Enabling your page visitors to go where they (and you!) want to is a cornerstone. Use one clearly defined navigation bar, and augment this with text links inside your content pointing to other pages or resources you’d like to show.

Use visuals! – The more images and videos you use in your content, the more often it will be read, shared and acted upon. That’s not opinion, but a fact. We love to look and watch, read not so much.

Optimize for mobile – With well over half of all web access and search now coming through a mobile device of some type, if you’re not optimized for mobile you are undoubtedly losing out.

Create unique, valuable content – The best way to help your conversions is by creating content that is valuable, sharable and leads logically (and one would hope with some urgency!) to the next step, conversion.

Create killer calls to action – Optimize your calls to action with some thought. Test the various elements just like you would content, and make every effort to make your CTA be noticed. Using colors that stand out yet are complimentary is key here, while remaining within the design elements of your page.

The best way to proceed is to be sure that when your content is being created, that conversion is part of the thought process. Thinking about it then will lead to more conversions afterwards!

Are you using content to drive traffic to your website or offer and do you have a Call-To-Action (CTA) to increase conversions and ultimately sales?

Seven Mistakes Your Are Making when Promoting Your Business Online!

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Marketing, SEO

viva technology - Local SEO Mistakes You May Be Unaware Of!

If you have a local business and you aren’t utilizing local SEO for all its worth, then you are likely missing out on a huge chunk of your audience! Likewise, if you are attempting but failing at your SEO efforts because of lack of knowledge to flat out blunders, you also will be pretty lonely hanging out at the ol’ website. So in an effort to avoid that dreaded scenario, let’s identify 7 downright daffy local SEO mistakes you’ll want to avoid at all costs!

7 Local SEO Mistakes to Avoid!

  1. Create Separate Listing for Each Location – Not having location-specific listing for each of your locations is a lazy blunder. If you want to rank for your locale, be sure to create listings for it, and don’t compound your error by duplicating the content from other locations.
  2. Your Content Marketing Isn’t Local – If you opt for the one-content solution fits all approach, you won’t rank as highly for local terms, and, you will fail to win the trust and business of those locals who do find your page. Include local color!
  3. Not Optimizing for Mobile – Having a site that mobile ready can make all the difference! Since now more than 50% of people browse on a mobile device, it’s imperative to be optimized for mobile.
  4. Flawed or Non-Existent Keyword Strategy – Not having targeted the correct keywords, or worse, no keywords at all, is a recipe for failure. Shoot for a mix of longer tail, more local in intent keywords, and only target one main keyword per page. You will rank for more than that, but you need to give Google a clear picture of what your pages are about. Whatever you do, do not keyword stuff! If it doesn’t read like you really wrote it, or you can read it with a straight face, you may want to look at that.
  5. Not Getting Reviews! – It’s a large mistake not to hit up your most satisfied customers for positive reviews. This will help you in so many ways. Whatever you do, don’t pay for or otherwise generate reviews on your own. They will be found out, and your site won’t see the light of day for some time!
  6. Bad NAP Data! – If your NAP data, (name, address, phone) is inconsistent across all your web and social platforms, you will not fare well. It’s easy enough to do; simply make sure your business information is presented in a consistent manner.
  7. Not Utilizing Videos for Local Terms – As well as Google ranks YouTube videos, it’s a bonehead play to not create videos utilizing local search terms. Moreover, they are easy to produce and very quick to implement! 

Have you made any of these mistakes? How is your business using Local Search results to gain more exposure and increase revenue?

What Does Content Marketing Look Like Now?

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Content Marketing

ContentStrategyMarketingContent Marketing. It’s very easy to agree with this, especially with the role that social media has and will continue to play in the SEO, traffic and authority of our web properties.

But what exactly should we be doing to make sure the mix we are using for our content marketing initiatives is as potent as we’d like it to be?

The shape of content marketing in 2014

The three buzzwords characterizing content marketing in 2014 are quality, multi-channel and social. Google’s Hummingbird update, along with the ongoing Panda and Penguin purges have left little doubt that in order to win with content, it’s going to have to be good, visual and able to be shared widely.

It’s no longer as simple as having a mobile or social media strategy: it’s all about being able to be found on any size or type of screen or device. With more active mobile devices than adults in this country, we’ve definitely passed the tipping point!

So what types of content are best these days?

Some content is worth far more than others. Today’s ability to secure a reach far beyond your site’s borders has seen to that. Let’s look at four types of content that wins in 2014.

Longer form content – It’s clear that Google is favoring quality long form content and rewards it with authority and rank. This can take the form of not only longer blog posts and articles, but reports, whitepapers, webinars, and even Kindle ebooks.

Videos – With roughly half of all web traffic going to videos, and that number rising for the foreseeable future, it’s clearly time to market on video if you aren’t already. The cost of video is hardly an issue anymore, and you are missing out on opportunities to tell your story online to a vast, ravenous audience.

Visual Content – This can be in the form of imagery, shared visual content (Pinterest, Instagram) and especially infographics. Neil Patel of KISSmetrics has revealed that by spending $600 per infographic over the last two years, (47 in all to the tune of $28,200) KISSmetrics has raked in 2,512,596 visitors, 41,142 links, 41,359 Tweets and some 20,859 Likes. This is traffic and leads that would have cost more than $800,000.

Tools and software – If you have the ability to create a free tool that your audience would find useful you run the risk of being swamped by visitors! This benefits you in many ways, from skyrocketing your trust and authority to long-term, heavy traffic. This one deserves some thought!

Content marketing in 2014 isn’t merely about blogging more, it’s a melding of what your audience is attuned to doing with their time and interests. Time to plant your content marketing strategy directly in that path!