Author Archives: Jenny Stradling

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About Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

Spammy Referral Traffic: What Is It and How Do I Get Rid Of It?

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This all started a few months ago when we noticed specific clients had a HUGE spike in Referral Traffic out of nowhere. Sometimes a client will acquire rented ad space without our knowledge, so we started looking closer at the Referral Sources in Google Analytics. This is when we noticed that the new Referral Sources appeared to be tools for website optimization or SEO:

Referrer Spam Site

Referrer Spam Site

Referrer Spam Site

Was it us? Was someone here using new tools I didn’t know about?

No.

It quickly became clear we are dealing with spam. Around here we call it bot traffic and it’s pretty easy to tell it’s fake, as generally it’s 100% bounce rate and the names of the referral sites always include something like “buttons”, “site”, “traffic” or even “SEO”. Stupid spammers.

Referrer Spam Site List

Unfortunately, Google still displays this traffic in Google Analytics, which means that clients see a spike in traffic (overall and referral specifically) but it’s not backed by increased time on site, page views, phone calls, form fills or conversions.

This traffic is actually hurting, not helping – and skewing our reporting. So, now what?

Spammy Referral Traffic: What Is It and How Do I Get Rid Of It?

You Should Exclude Spam Bots from Google Analytics

As mentioned above, if you are reporting to clients or even simply using Google Analytics to track and manage your marketing campaigns, you need accurate data. Who wants to send a client a report with hundreds or sometimes thousands of referral visitors and zero conversion data to back that up? Not me.

And, Block The Bots

Also, who knows what these spammers are doing and what the bots are collecting? Every spammer has a reason for spamming, right? I mean, it seems like a lot of work to create these web bots and run these scripts, so it’s got to serve them some purpose. What if they are looking for vulnerabilities in order to hack in? No thank you.

How To Block The Spammy Referral Traffic

The good news is there are a number of ways you can block the referral spam. We suggest you block known spammers in the .htaccess of your site code and also filter the spam out of your traffic data using advanced Google Analytics filters. Below is the lowdown.

Editing the .htaccess File for Known Spammers

This part can become pretty technical, so it’s important to have a developer perform a full backup of your website before implementing this change. If there is anything wrong with the code in this file of your site, it could cause your entire site to go down. So if you don’t know what you are doing, please get a pro help you. (and if you screw it up, don’t say I didn’t tell you so!)

What is the .htaccess file and how can it prevent the spammers from hitting the site?

This hidden file located in your server cPanel, allows you to alter visitors who are able to access your site from a server level. We’re going to block the visitors we don’t want (referral spam) by not allowing them to hit the server at all.

To access the file on your server, simply log in to your hosting account and go into the cPanel. Your .htaccess file will be in the File Manager area but may be hidden. Check with your hosting provider to see the necessary steps for accessing this file.

Once you’ve located the file, implement the code to block all of the referral spam from hitting your server.

# Block Russian Referrer Spam
RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*ilovevitaly\.com/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*ilovevitaly.\.ru/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*ilovevitaly\.org/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*ilovevitaly\.info/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*iloveitaly\.ru/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*econom\.co/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*savetubevideo\.com/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*kambasoft\.com/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*buttons\-for\-website\.com/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*semalt\.com/ [NC,OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*darodar\.com/ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ – [F,L]

Unsure of all of the spammers altering your referral traffic? You can always go into your Google Analytics account to find the spammers. Simply export all of the referral traffic sources from the past 6 months. Otherwise, here is a comprehensive list of current spam bots that you can refer to.

Blocking Spammy Crawlers with Google Analytics Filters

One way these spam crawlers are accessing the Google Analytics servers are through inaccurate hostnames. To ensure the spam crawlers aren’t hitting your server with these hostnames and causing inaccurate data, you must verify to Google Analytics what the valid hostnames really are.

1. Create an unfiltered view in Google Analytics first because you can’t go back to an unfiltered view after implementing filters.

Google Analytics Unfiltered View 2. Locate your valid hostnames by going in the Reporting section of your Google Analytics profile using a wide date range. Under Acquisition –> All Traffic –> All Channels –> Referrals, select the Secondary Dimension for Hostname. You can export this list and identify the valid hostnames, which may include the following: your domain, sub-domains, or redirected domains. Anything else would be an invalid hostname. So keep the ACCURATE hostnames in a list.Google Analytics Valid Hostnames

3. In the Admin tab of your Google Analytics under View (make sure you’re on the main site view now, not the unfiltered), click Filters.

Google Analytics Filters View

4. Add a new filter to include the valid hostnames you found.

Valid Hostnames Google Analytics Filter

Note: This method will NOT remove all of the referrer spam. You must also add additional spam filters in Google Analytics to filter all of the spam sources since the spammers can alter their hostnames to be a valid hostname. See the steps below for adding additional spam filters to prevent as much referral spam as possible.

Blocking All Referral Spam Sites with Google Analytics Filters

Since simply validating the hostnames isn’t enough to block spammers, you will also need create additional filters to block each individual site at a domain level. You do not need to include sub-domains since the domain itself should be enough to filter the sub-domains as well.

1. Locate referral sites that are currently spamming your site. You can do this by searching the web for the most accurate list of referral spam (already linked above), or you can export a list of referral sources from your Google Analytics. To know if it’s spam, you will notice the visitor behavior is non-existent. There will be 100% bounce rates and little to no visitor duration.

referral-site-behavior

2. Create your list of sites using guidelines for the Filter Pattern using Regular Expressions provided by Google. Note: For the referral spam list filter pattern, you can keep it simple. As long as there aren’t any special characters within the domain. Keep this at a maximum of 255 characters. See the example below:

3. Create a new filter in your main analytics view entitled Referral Spam Filter #1.

4. Filter Type: Custom – Exclude. Filter Field should be set on Campaign Source.

Referral Spam Filter

5. Save this filter. Repeat this step a few times until you have used all of the referrer spam sites you’re finding in your analytics (because of the character limit in Google). The end result should look like the example below:

Referral Spam Filters Overview

Exclude Bots with the Bot-Filtering Setting in Google Analytics

This is an easy one, we promise: The last step to make sure you have excluded as many spam crawlers and as much referral site spam you possibly can is to check your Google Analytics settings to make sure the bot setting is checked. In the Admin panel, click on View Settings. Check the box to exclude all hits from known bots and spiders. Save these settings.

Bot Filtering Setting

Closing Thoughts

The steps listed above are not an end-all solution, unfortunately. New spam referrer sites are going to show up even if you do everything you can to try and prevent them. We suggest monitoring the site referral spam by checking in every 1-3 months (give or take) to see if you notice any new spam sites showing up in your Referral Traffic. If you do, simply follow the instructions above. There is word Google is also working on a solution to this problem, so we’ll keep you posted when we learn more.

Do you need help monitoring your Google Analytics for accurate data and reporting? We’re experts at that stuff! Give us a call: 800-871-4130

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 42: New ESEO Team Members, What Is Happening With Mobilegeddon

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Eminent SEO News

We are still expanding our team! We are excited to welcome Casey Hansen and Kayla Haskin!

Casey Hansen

Casey is the new Executive Assistant to our CEO, Jenny Stradling. She also is a Jr. Graphic Designer and has been developing the social creatives for Eminent SEO and Eminent Social Media as well as several clients.
Learn More About Casey

Kayla Haskin

Kayla is part of our Fulfillment Team and is helping manage the inventory, fulfill organic marketing orders and develop strategic website plans.
Learn More About Kayla

Good To Know In SEO: What Is Happening With #Mobilegeddon

Last month we notified you about one of THE biggest Google algorithm updates in years: #Mobilegeddon. So, now that it has officially rolled out how is it impacting search and mobile marketing?

Despite all of the buzz and speculation, the mobile friendly algorithm update has not been as significant as most of us expected. Google confirmed the algorithm update did indeed roll out on April 21st, 2015 and some noticed changes to their mobile rankings and traffic as early as the next day. However, most are saying that the shifts were really not notably different.

In this Search Engine Land post Danny Sullivan reviews the winners and losers of Mobilegeddon. This preliminary list identifies Reddit as the top loser, obviously they took a hit because the site doesn’t test as mobile friendly (what were they thinking?).

The good news for any “losers” is that there’s a pretty good chance you can regain your lost rankings within a few days if you just make your website mobile friendly. We know it’s not THAT easy – but, don’t say you weren’t warned!

April Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

We’ve been having a lot of fun with Max and Meg. Check out some of our favorite social posts from the last month. Which one do you like best?

April Showers

YouTube

Hero

Believe

Apple Watch

April Blog Roundup

Each month we like to roundup our favorite posts from the Eminent family of sites. Below are the top posts from April 2015. As always, check out our blog for the latest website and marketing news, tips and how-to’s.

The Google Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update Is Coming April 21st
Google announced its mobile-friendly algorithm update and gave the internet plenty of time to make their websites mobile responsive. Did you prepare your site? Still not sure what needs to be done? Check out this post to learn everything you need to know about Mobilegeddon.

How Seasonal Search Plays a Role in Your SEO and PPC Campaigns
Does your business have peak times during the year where sales are a lot higher? It’s important to understand seasonal search when developing out any SEO or PPC strategy because users are going to search a lot more during your peak times, so you want to make sure your business is visible. This could lead to adjusting campaign budgets and more. Learn more about seasonal search and how this plays a role in your campaigns.

Facebook Launches Scrapbook Feature
Yesterday Facebook started rolling out a new feature called “Scrapbook”. The feature serves as a handy tool for organizing all those baby (or pet!) photos and storing them in a dedicated, easy-to-access place. Awesome, right? Read our blog to get all the details!

How To Get The Most Out Of Your LinkedIn Profile
Are you happy with the way you are using LinkedIn? With more than 347 million users, LinkedIn is the most popular social network for professionals as well as one of the top social networks overall. However, without the right knowledge, it becomes just another time-sucking social network.

See Ya Online!

Don’t forget, it’s not too late to turn that outdated, non-mobile friendly website into a fully responsive site. We can re-design and/or re-develop your website so that it meets all of Google’s requirements and also enhances your user experience for higher conversions. Just call us for a quote: 800.871.4130.

Until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 41: Eminent SEO is Hiring, The Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update is Coming Soon

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Eminent SEO News

We're-HiringWe are growing! Right now we are looking for 2-3 new additions to our ever growing team! Are you a good fit? Know someone who might be? Check out the two job listings on LinkedIn and feel free to spread the word!

Inventory Manager(s)

Account Manager(s)

Good to Know in SEO (RIGHT NOW)

The Google Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update is Coming Soon!

A major new Google Algorithm update is coming April 21st, 2015. There is no official name for it yet, so the SEO community is calling it the Mobile-Friendly update. It is going to have a direct impact on a website’s ability to rank in the organic search queries from mobile devices. We highly recommend you read ALL about this update here: The Google Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update Is Coming April 21st

If you are more technical you might also want to read this article as well: 9 Things You Need to Know About Google’s Mobile-Friendly Update

Google-Mobile-Friendly-Algorithm

March Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

Yay! It’s that time again – a social media roundup from March. What was your favorite post last month?

Achieve

Irish

A beautiful cloudy view from the Mesa Eminent SEO office:
View-from-ESEO-Office

Trustworthy

Arthur-Ashe

Want more? Check us out on Instagram.

March Marketing Blog Roundup

Your monthly roundup of the Eminent blog posts from March, cause we wouldn’t want you to miss anything important!

Top Tracking Metrics to Measure for Organic Marketing

Show the success of your organic marketing campaigns with the right analytics. Here are some we think are useful.

Why You Should Kiss Your City Landing Pages and Microsites Goodbye

Google silently released a new algorithm update in the middle of March that is targeting those spammy keyword or city-focused landing pages and microsites. Did you notice a change in your organic traffic? If so, your site may have been impacted by this update. Learn more about this update, and why you need to kiss your old manipulative SEO techniques goodbye.

How to Perform a Website SEO Audit in Ten Minutes or Less

Website SEO audits can be done on the fly if you are using the right tools and know what to look for. By performing these quick SEO audits for leads or clients, you can justify why they need a custom SEO strategy to build their campaign and further the growth of their business. Learn how to do one in under 10 minutes.

Getting To Know Team Eminent SEO: Lacey Chic

Get to know yet another amazing Eminent SEO team member, Lacey. Not only is she a frequent blogger on Eminent SEO, but she also develops out custom SEO strategies for our new clients and leads. Smart, creative, and fun – get to know more about her outside of work in this fun post.

NEW: YouTube Kids

Announcing YouTube Kids! It’s an app for iOS and Android that will take the worry out of letting your kids click around on YouTube. Parents rejoice!

Facebook Set To Remove Page Likes From Inactive Users

Facebook is going to start removing the “likes” and comments from people who are no longer active. Find out why this is a good change for your business!

Send Money To Friends Using Facebook Messenger

Facebook’s IM service isn’t just for messages and emoji’s anymore! You can now use messenger to send funds instantly to your Facebook friends. Get the scoop!

Live-streaming Apps: Meerkat Verses Periscope

LIVE NOW apps are on the rise! Have you heard of Meerkat or Periscope? Read more about these hot new live streaming video apps.

Have a topic you want us to research and write about? Let us know in the comments and we will happily feature your topic in an April post!

See Ya Online!

We hope you enjoyed this month’s Eminent SEO team newsletter. We are busy this month helping new client’s convert their outdated websites to mobile-friendly, responsive designs. If you need help with your website, please give us a call. We can evaluate your existing site and make custom recommendations.

Thanks for reading! Until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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The Google Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update Is Coming April 21st

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Every year Google updates their algorithm 100’s of times. Last year there were over 500 updates. Yes, many of them are simple data refreshes, but there were also quite a few significant algorithm updates. You might be familiar with some of the bigger ones over the last few years, such as Panda, Penguin and Pigeon. So, what’s next?

Google-Mobile-Friendly-Algorithm

Enter the Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update

There is no official name for this algorithm update yet, so marketers are calling it the “mobile-friendly” update. Hopefully they won’t taint the name of another cute, small animal that starts with a “P” (what could it be the Piggy update? Pheasant? Pale Fox? I digress…).  Google did announce the specific date, however, so we can confirm that it will begin rolling out on April 21st, 2015.

So, what is going to happen come April 21st?

I am not a psychic, so please know that some of this is speculation since the update is yet to roll out. However, I have done quite a bit of research on the subject, so this post is an attempt to bring you real information collected from the online marketing community.

It appears this update is going to impact:

  • Mobile App Indexablility and Rankability in Mobile Search
  • The Rankability of Websites with a Mobile App Available
  • Website Rankings on Mobile Search

Since most of the questions I get from our clients are related to their website’s ability to rank and how they will be impacted by this algorithm update, that is where I am going to focus. If you are more technical and want to read more about the subject, I highly suggest this post on the Moz Community blog from Cindy Krum: 9 Things You Need to Know About Google’s Mobile-Friendly Update.

Your Mobile Website Questions Answered

Is mobile search really that big?

Many online marketers were predicting mobile search would overtake desktop search by the year 2014 and they were right. A recent report from comScore shows mobile search actually overtook desktop within the last year:

Mobile-Search

This means that there is a good chance that a lot of your website traffic is coming from mobile search. In our client pool we see anywhere from 30%-60% of total web traffic is coming from mobile queries on average, sometimes more.

Other Mobile Stats:

  1. 80% of internet users own a smartphone
  2. Popular devices used to search the internet:
    • Desktop/Laptop: 91%
    • Smartphone: 80%
    • Tablet: 47%
    • Game Consoles: 37%
    • Smart TV’s: 34%
  3. 40% of mobile searches are local
  4. 81% of mobile conversions happen within 5 hours of the search
  5. 85% of mobile users prefer to use an app over a website

Do I need a mobile or responsive website?

YES! Did you read the statistics above? Mobile search has already taken over desktop search and the numbers will only continue to increase this year. More and more people are using their mobile devices to search and buy, so if your website isn’t mobile-friendly you are overlooking an important part of your user experience.

Also, come April 21st there is a good chance your website will lose its ability to rank well in the mobile search results. Why? Because Google wants to serve their mobile users the sites that are formatted well for mobile devices. Google is always aiming to provide it’s users with the best websites and information available. They understand that users are going to be frustrated with the results of their query if they land on pages that aren’t mobile-friendly. How frustrated are you when you search for something from your phone and the result you click on produces itty-bitty content that is impossible to read? Or navigation you can’t even click on? No thank you.

Responsive-Website

What is the difference between a mobile website and a responsive website?

When mobile search first started to become popular, many website owners and website designers/developers believed you needed a separate mobile site or landing page. This resulted in thousands of sub-domain sites (think m.yourdomain.com) and standalone mobile pages, designed specifically for use on smartphones.

Typically a mobile site is a scaled back version of the desktop website, which can include limited content, images and pages. It also is coded so that anytime a smartphone user visits your website the code will recognize the device and provide them with the mobile version automatically.

A responsive design is a website developed to scale to any size and type of device – desktop, tablet or mobile phone. Unlike mobile sites, it’s NOT a separate site, but rather a code that adjusts the design to fit the screen dimensions of the browsing device:

Responsive-Design

All things considered, a responsive site is a better solution long term than a mobile site. Why? For starters, a responsive design is better for SEO. Mobile sites are developed on sub-domains and responsive sites host mobile code on a single domain.

Another huge added value is the consistency it provides to your user experience. If I visit your website from my desktop and later I decide to visit your website from my smartphone, I want to see the same information. If you hide information from me because I am on my phone, I am going to become frustrated. A responsive design ensures that repeat visitors can access all of the content and information your site has to offer, regardless of which device they are searching from.

How do I know if my site is mobile-friendly?

There are actually quite a few free tools on the market that will check for mobile or responsive design and even show you a preview of your site, per device. I’ve used http://www.responsinator.com/ but it isn’t perfect and only gives you a preview – it doesn’t give you any real data:

Mobile-Friendly

Instead, Google rolled out a new Mobile-Friendly testing tool, which will analyze a URL and give you a report back on if that page has a mobile-friendly design:

Mobile-Friendly-Test

Keep in mind, however, this is just a tool and therefore doesn’t replace the need to manually review your site to ensure the user experience is the very best it can be. I always advise clients to also Google their site from their smartphones if they want to see what a user sees. Naturally each type of phone is slightly different, so if you want to really evaluate your site design manually, ask a friend with a different device to look it up for you – be sure to check your site on an iPhone AND an Android device.

It’s also important to note that there are other tools you should also use to determine how mobile-friendly your website is. The Google mobile-friendly tool above gives you a “yes” or “no” and a quick screenshot of your site as Google sees it on a mobile phone:

Mobile-Phone

They also give you specific recommendations for areas you should fix to make your site mobile-friendly.

But, you should also use these two other tools if you really want to know how mobile ready your site is:

Google’s PageSpeed Insights Test Tool – This tool gives you insights into your website loading times, including your mobile page speed. It also gives you other recommendations on things you should fix. You should note that unlike the mobile-friendly tool which looks at the page like a Googlebot would, the PageSpeed tool fetches the page as a user would. Very different, which is why you should use both tools.

Lastly, you should also use the Mobile Usability Report option in your Google Webmaster Tools account. Simply log in and navigate to the Mobile Usability Report. Once you run the report you will be provided with specific details on which pages are pulling a usability error. Example:

Mobile-Usability-Report

Google has also been sending out notifications through Google Webmaster Tools to sites that don’t meet the new mobile-friendly requirements. If you haven’t received an email you likely have a mobile-friendly site. However, you can confirm by checking your messages in Webmaster Tools.

Do tablets count as mobile devices?

No. Surprised? I was at first too. However, according to this post on Search Engine Round Table by Barry Schwartz: Google Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Will Not Impact Tablet Searches “the algorithm will only impact searches done on smartphones – only. This does not impact desktop searches and it does not impact tablet searches.”

Tablet-Searches

This is good to know, but doesn’t change the fact that a significant amount of search traffic is coming from smartphones specifically. So, the potential loss in traffic is still significant.

Will I lose traffic on April 21st if my site isn’t mobile-friendly?

Yes. Unlike other major algorithm updates, Google has actually provided the public with an advanced warning on this one, giving you plenty of time to fix your site:

“Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”

– Google

You can read the full official announcement from Google here.

To be clear – this is specific to mobile search. So, if you have great keyword rankings and traffic from desktop searches, those should NOT be impacted at this time. However, as mentioned above, if you are getting 30% or more of your traffic from mobile search queries (which is typical) than if your site is not mobile-friendly, you WILL DEFINITELY LOSE TRAFFIC.

The Nutshell

If your website isn’t mobile-friendly you will likely lose a significant amount of traffic come April 21st. Even if that number is low right now, keep in mind that mobile search is still on the rise and will only continue to grow over the next few years. If you own a website and you are planning for the future, now is the time to integrate a solid strategy for creating a great mobile experience for your site users.

If you need help developing a mobile website and marketing strategy, give us a call: 800.871.4130.

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 40: Good to Know in SEO, Social Media Design Optimization, Monthly Blog Roundup

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Good to Know in SEO

As you know, internet marketing is dynamic and is literally changing every day. If you want to know what is going on in SEO now, you need to read… a LOT!

Here are a few great posts from across the web we think you should read this month:

Google Reveals Android App for On-the-Go Campaign Management
After a whole slew of product launches for AdWords in recent weeks, Google has now revealed an Android app that is available in the Play store.

Google May Discontinue Its AJAX Crawlable Guidelines
Does your site use AJAX? Well, Google may stop crawling those pages. More details to come from Google as early as next week.

How Google Pulls Structured Snippets from Websites’ Tables
Bill Slawski gets into how to apply WebTables. Some great stuff for the more advanced SEO’s.

How to Do Keyword Research for SEO: A Beginner’s Guide
Everyone does their keyword research slightly differently. If you are just learning how to do it yourself, check out this method from Hubspot.

Should Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Be Taught At College?
Often people have asked us if there is a course or degree for SEO… The answer is no. Why don’t colleges offer a legitimate degree in this sphere? As it turns out, there are very good reasons for it.

BONUS:

Okay, this one isn’t necessarily going to help you with your marketing strategies, but it might help you have a good time with your friends this weekend. You’re welcome!

Google Search Now Serving Up Cocktail Recipes With Drink Ingredients & Directions
Want to know how to make a Mint Julep? Just ask Google.

Google mixologist

Social Media Design Optimization

Social media platforms all offer different features. Most let you customize your profile image, banner and add some information about your business. If you want to take full advantage of the platform, you should customize and optimize every area available to you, including designs.

Some people think it’s enough to load their logo or a photo – but all too often we see logos that are cut off, blurry images and other obvious issues due to the designs not being properly scaled for the individual platform. Even if you create beautiful, custom designs you still have to size them for the specific recommended dimensions, per platform. For example, the recommended Facebook profile image sizing is 900 x 900, however, for Pinterest it’s 735 x 1102.

To help you design optimal images for your business profiles we created a quick guide. These are the only dimensions you will ever need to create and optimize your important social platforms (until they decide to change them on us again!).
Social Media Image Optimization

February Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

February was a fun month for social media… We buzzed about the Super Bowl, sent out love for Valentine’s Day and shared some motivational quotes. What do you like to see in your social media feeds? Funny videos, inspirational quotes, articles about SEO, marketing facts and stats? Let us know so we can share more of what you love!
Superbowl
Achieve Goals
Maya Angelou
Too Busy
Beauty
Go for great

February Marketing Blog Roundup

Lots of good reading in this month’s Eminent SEO, Social Media and Branding blog roundup!

5 Ways To Build Online Brand Awareness In 2015
Looking for ways to build your company’s brand awareness this year? Are you looking for ways to stand out from the competition?

The Importance of a Website Content Audit During a Re-Design and How to Do It
Are you looking to re-design and develop your website? Have you thought about performing a content audit on your existing site before the re-design? If you haven’t, you need to. Here are some tips on how to perform a website content audit and reasons why it’s necessary.

Getting To Know Team Eminent SEO: Kirstin Douglas
Meet Kirstin Douglas. She is our Office Guru who is witty and logical at the same time. Mother of two, loves anime and keeps us in line! Find out how Eminent SEO keeps functioning at our best with Kirstin on the team.

How Content and Links Work Together for Better Organic Marketing
Content and link building techniques need to align in order to build a strong organic marketing strategy. With a strong organic presence, your website will rank higher in the SERPs attracting qualified users, while content marketing will walk those users through the sales funnel and help convert them into qualified leads. Here are some ways these two techniques work together.

2015 Super Bowl Commercials: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!
When you are a marketer you watch the Super Bowl for the commercials! This year entertained us, made us cry and even made us cringe a little. What was your favorite ad this year?

Is Pinterest Adding A “Buy Now” Button?
Your favorite cork board may be making the switch to digital mall. What if instead of just pinning those shoes you would die for, you could buy them with a click of a button? This feature will make buying (and selling) a breeze.

How Your Business Can Benefit From The Growing App Market
Don’t think your business can benefit from mobile apps? Think again. Some tips on how to make Snapchat work for your business marketing campaigns.

Facebook Limits Organic Reach: What Does That Mean for Marketers?
Now that Facebook is limiting the amount of promotional content in newsfeeds, how are marketers supposed to utilize Facebook to help promote brands? There are still ways, but they are limited. Here are few we came up with. Feel free to share some of your ideas in the comments.

See Ya Online!

Welcome to our new subscribers! We hope you found something useful in this month’s newsletter. Are you interested in a specific topic you’d like us to feature in the next blog post or newsletter? Send us a note – we’d love to dive deeper into the subjects that matter to you the most.

Thanks for reading! Until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 39: New Marketing Trends for 2015, A Recent Google Algorithm Update

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Are Your Marketing Strategies Aligned for The Trends in 2015?

trends
January is always a favorite time of year for us at Eminent SEO. It’s always the beginning of a crazy season as clients and partners review the previous year’s strategies and determine their marketing budgets for the new year. 2015 has been no different. We’ve been performing website audits, reworking existing marketing campaigns and sending out proposals to freshen up old website designs.

Have you reviewed your 2014 campaigns and built new strategies for 2015? No? Not Yet? It might be time for you to go back and review our projected 2015 Digital Marketing Trends and prepare a forward thinking strategy for your website and on-line marketing campaigns. It’s not too late to make 2015 your most profitable year ever!

Good To Know in SEO: Recent Google Algorithm Update

We always like to check out the news and forum chatter updates on Search Engine Round Table for Google algorithm updates. On January 26th Barry Schwartz said that the WebmasterWorld forums were buzzing about unusual fluctuations in the SERPs. He also said that Mozcast was showing some higher than normal weather patterns – check out what they are showing for the last 30 days:
mozcast
Whoa! Something is definitely going on right now…

A more recent post explains that the fluctuations were part of a major update but Google confirmed the changes were NOT related to Penguin or Panda.

So, we know there was a change (and we know it was not Penguin or Panda) but everything else at this point appears to be speculation. However, most webmasters are saying they are pretty sure this was NOT related to mobile.

What do you think it was related to? Better content? Bad links? Local ranking indicators? Did you see any changes?

January Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

As always, here are a few of our favorite social media shares from the last month. We like sharing things that lift you up and help motivate you. What inspires you?

“Always remember: You are braver than you believe, stronger that you seem and smarter than you think.”
smarter

Surround yourself with people who lift you up (you are worth it).
wonderful

The future is a choice, make yours beautiful.
create

Start now.
startnow

You create your own opportunities.
opportunities

January Marketing Blog Roundup

Getting to Know Team Eminent SEO: Cherry McCarthy
Meet Cherry: “I love series and reality shows. I never miss GG2D (Girlfriends Guide to Divorce), Teen Mom, Ray Donovan, House of Lies, World of Jenks or Catfish.”
A dynamic, smart and really fun personality; you’ll see why she is such an asset to our team.

6 Reasons You Need Website Marketing Services for Your Small Business
Looking for an affordable way to grow your small business? Have you thought about website marketing services, but are hesitant? Don’t be. Instead, check out these 6 reasons why you should invest in website marketing today.

Facebook Limits Organic Reach: What Does That Mean for Marketers?
Did you know that Facebook is now limiting the amount of fan page content in news feeds even MORE? It may be harder to get in front of your potential clients without buying ads, but there are still ways. Here are a few ideas you can try!

Getting to Know Team Eminent SEO: Amanda Greenwood
Meet Amanda: When asked about the best part of working at Eminent SEO, this was her response:
“The team that I work with – we’re all friends outside of work too which I think makes it easier to work with someone. There’s a higher level of trust and respect for each person and their area of expertise. I know I can count on them to get the job done right so our clients can achieve the highest ROI. ”
You’ll soon see how she helps us stay organized and operating so smoothly.

From Around The Web:

7 Thank You Pages That Take Post-Conversion to the Next Level
From our friends at UnBounce.com – a smart post on how you can take advantage of what’s most overlooked: Thank You pages! (We love this stuff!).

Why Uber and Google Will Become Big Rivals
Google and Uber are considering building out big delivery networks other providers can plug into, leading to a new platform war with big significance for tech.

How to Be Successful on Twitter: 9 Surprising Stats to Know
We always get a little excited for some real stats – some of these are indeed surprising! Some great info to add to your SMM toolbox.

See Ya Online!

It’s clear that Google plans to continue to adjust their algorithms this year, so marketers and website owners all need to pay attention, remain flexible and be prepared to adjust strategies. Digital marketing is no longer set it and forget it! We are now in a time where things change so fast that yesterday’s strategies may not apply to tomorrow. It’s hard work… thank goodness we love this stuff! If you need help juggling all of the changes, give us a ring: 800.871.4130.

And… until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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2015 Super Bowl Commercials: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!

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Football fans and their uninterested family and friends unite for the Super Bowl each year, why? Well, besides chicken wings and lots of beer, even those who couldn’t care less about the game will get together to watch the commercials.

I personally fall into the second category. While I understand the love for football, it’s just not my thing. However, I LOVE the commercials and I look forward to the event every year for that very reason. Each year companies spend millions of dollars for their chance to give the public a reason to talk about their brand. Some go for humor, some go for sentiment and some even produce some serious (and often controversial) content.

This year was no different.

I took to Twitter to participate in live Tweeting related to the Super Bowl – specifically the ads (and a little other commentary). Each year the online marketing community gets involved and uses hashtags like: #BrandBowl #AdBowl and a new one (at least it’s the first time I’ve seen it) #HashtagBowl. Between the Tweets in my feed and the group I was with, I got a pretty clear picture of what commercials went over well and which ones flopped.

Here is the breakdown:

Let’s start with the bad: The Worst Super Bowl Ad of 2015

It’s pretty obvious who made the worst ad this year. The online census is clear. Sorry Nationwide but come on, do you really think that freaking out parents with childhood death was appropriate for the Super Bowl? I understand this is an important topic… but most people feel like it was in bad taste for this particular event.

Nationwide Insurance: Make Safe Happen

http://youtu.be/dKUy-tfrIHY

The comments were pretty harsh:

Other Losers:  

Although the response to most ads was somewhat mixed, it’s pretty safe to say that there were some other losers, including:

    • Victoria’s Secret: Despite the beautiful models in their underwear, this ad was a big yawn fest.
      • T-Mobile: Kim Kardashian for DataStash: Supposed to be funny, but ended up mainly as a big, ehhhhhh.
        • Mercedes-Benz: Fable: Beautiful car, but the tortoise and hare idea is a bit overplayed already, dontcha think?
          • Esurance: Say My Name: We love you Heisenberg, but most of us were left wondering “WTF?”.
            • Skittles: Settle It: Skittles has done such a great job with their ads in the past – we were all expecting something a lot better than this.
              • FIAT 500X: The Blue Pill: This one had me at first, but once that blue pill slipped into the FIAT gas tank we were all a little grossed out.

              And, finally for the good: The Best Super Bowl Ads of 2015

              The Tearjerkers:

              Every year there is at least one ad that hits our heart strings, but this year there was an overwhelmingly large amount of ads that were intended to bring on the tears. Admittedly, I am a crier. I cry when the underdog wins, when Oprah causes a celebrity to have an “ah-ha” moment and when my kids give me a homemade card that says “I love you”… so it’s no wonder that more than one commercial made ME cry. But here is what the group had to say:

              Budweiser: Lost Dog: Awwww, a cute puppy, beautiful horses and an old favorite song all in one commercial? *tear*

              Some of our kids really loved the commercial, but it’s for beer so… But, overall it got a pretty good response on the web:

              Coca-Cola: Make it Happy: I liked this ad because it A) raises a good point: there is WAY too much hate on the web and B) acts as a reminder we should all try harder to be kind to each other.

              However, others found it “cheesy” and a lot of the comments online were regarding the brand and the product itself, specifically about Coke causing obesity or something similar:

              What a stupid commercial. Keep poisoning everyone with your toxic high fructose corn syrup.”

              McDonald’s: Pay With Lovin’: The runner up for the best tearjerker of the night.

              Great message (yes, I cried) but unfortunately people still hate McDonald’s:

              “Why not show some love for the animals you confine and kill by the billions each year?  Stop pretending to be “good guys”.

              Still, fans seem to be pretty excited about the idea of free food:

              And, some of us see it for its marketing brilliance:

              “Beautiful, smart and unique concept. A table and I were even talking about it before the super bowl even aired on Saturday because we had heard about it on the radio and paper. Love that they’re continuing to do it Feb 1st – Feb 14th – Ongoing love and PR!”

              Always #LikeAGirl: The clear winner of the tearjerkers this year. If you don’t like this commercial, there’s something wrong with you. The Always marketing people did a fantastic job with a tricky product – particularly for the Super Bowl. A lot of thought went into this one:

              And, yes, as a mother of a teenage girl, I cried… in fact, this one had the biggest impact on my emotions overall. I wanted to run to my daughter and tell her how awesome it is to be a girl and that she can do ANYTHING she wants to in this world.

              Other responses:

              “I loved the #LikeAGirl one because I have 2 daughters (one of which is excelling in martial arts) and a strong woman who don’t do things in the put down way of ‘like a girl’.”

              “The minute they showed the ten year old girls unaffected by gender stereotypes, I started to cry. I started to cry because I was taught that running and throwing like a girl was a bad thing. Stopped running in marathons when I was twelve. Stopped playing softball when I was fifteen. I just thought…I don’t know what I thought. Just know this made me cry! I do remember what it was like. I don’t know why I ever listened!”

              The Funny:

              A note to big product brands: when it doubt, go funny. I get it, funny doesn’t work for everything. However, this IS the Super Bowl and it’s a family event. So, family friendly humor goes over well and doesn’t isolate.

              Bud Light: Real Life PacMan: The group at my house thought this ad was rad. It left us all wanting to play a real life PacMan game.

              I personally was a little disappointed there wasn’t more to the ad after last years EPIC ad with the same premises #UpForWhatever:

              But I still want to play Real Life PacMan.

              Snickers: The Brady Bunch: The runner up for the best funny ad this year. Keeping in line with their other “hangry” commercials, this one spoke to the Brady Bunch lover in us all:

              Many thought the ad was nothing short of perfection: “I doubt we’ll see a #SuperBowl ad that tops Snickers’ with Danny Trejo in The Brady Bunch”

              And, for THE WINNER:

              Mountain Dew Kickstart: Come Alive: The full version came on before kickoff and helped get the party started. Tell me this isn’t funny:

              I don’t know what’s funnier, the guy getting low, the fluffy dog or that deer on the wall… Either way, it was nice to actually laugh out loud (and not be embarrassed to share the moment with my kids). Some comments from on-line: “Best commercial I’ve seen this year! Go ahead. Touch stuff.”

              A Few Honorable Mentions:

              • Microsoft: Braylon O’Neill: Good job, but unfortunately didn’t make the “best” list.
              • T-Mobile: Sarah Silverman & Chelsea Handler for Wi-Fi Calling: I thought it was funny.
              • mophie: All-Powerless: “When your phone dies, God knows what can happen”… Well played, mophie, well played.
              • Squarespace: Super Bowl 2015: Om: This one got mixed reviews, but one person in the office loved it: “I loved the Dreaming with Jeff Bridges by Squarespace ad…cuz I love the Dude!”
              • Dodge: Wisdom: This one also got some mixed reviews. The overall response was it was good, but most couldn’t see the ad and the brand connection.

              In case you missed the Super Bowl (or, maybe were you busy grilling and eating during some of the commercials) click here for a full list of the YouTube videos.

              So, that is it for this year’s #BrandBowl recap.

              What were your favorite and least favorite ads? Did they make our list? Share in the comments below.

              Avatar for Jenny Stradling

              Jenny Stradling

              Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 38: Holiday Celebrations, 2014 Algorithm Changes, Dec. Blog Roundup

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Eminent SEO Team News

Here in Arizona it’s been a little chilly… but nothing like you East Coasters! We hope you are staying nice and warm by the fire!

ESEO Team News

The end of the year is always a lot of fun, but this year December was especially exciting. Here’s what we’ve been up to:

Annual Company “Ugly Sweater” Holiday Party

This year we found a super cool spot in downtown Phoenix called The Duce for our holiday party. The place is fun and eclectic – offering everything from unique drinks and food to shopping, dancing and even a boxing ring! We all enjoyed each other’s company and laughed at the ugly sweaters everyone was wearing:

Holiday party

Secret Santa Gift Exchange

Of course we also had our annual Secret Santa gift exchange. Shopping for a co-worker with a $20.00 budget cap is harder than it looks! It’s a fun challenge though and between the thoughtful gifts and homemade potluck we all had a great time.

Secret Santa

A Member of Team Eminent SEO Got Married

As of November 15th our long-time team Eminent SEO member Amanda Sisk is now officially Amanda Greenwood! Congratulations Amanda and Jesse! Their wedding was beautiful and so sweet. It’s so fun to celebrate these special times with our team family!

Wedding

Good to Know in SEO (RIGHT NOW)

If you are in the industry you already know that 2014 brought a LOT of Google algorithm changes and updates. With so many updates it’s hard to keep up! So, we thought we would recap the year in updates for you. Here it is:

Confirmed Google Algorithm Updates in 2014 – A Complete List

Page Layout #3 – February 2014
A refresh to Google’s page layout algorithm, some people call it “top heavy”. Penalizes sites with too many ads above the fold.

Payday Loan 2.0 — May 2014
Targets especially spammy queries.

Panda 4.0 #26 — May 2014
The update targeted sites with low quality content.

Payday Loan 3.0 — June 2014
Official statements suggested that 2.0 targeted specific sites, while 3.0 targeted spammy queries.

Authorship Photo Drop — June 2014
Google announced they would be dropping all authorship photos from SERPs.

Pigeon — July 2014
An update that drastically changed which factors Google uses to determine local rankings.

HTTP/SSL Update – August 2014
Google announced they will now give preference to secured sites and that adding encryption will provide a “lightweight” boost.

Authorship Removed — August 2014
First Google removed authorship photos, come August 28th they announce they would also be removing authorship markup. By the next morning all authorship disappeared from the SERPs.

Panda 4.1 — September 2014
A Panda update, with an algorithmic component.

“In The News” Box – October 2014
A display change to News-box results that resulted in an expanded news site SERP presence.

Penguin 3.0 — October 2014 with continuing changes until December 6, 2014
A slow moving update came with the release of the new Penguin. This update was probably data-only.

Pirate 2.0 — October 2014
This one was to fight the media piracy. Obviously targeted and affected only a small set of sites.

WHEW! That is a lot of Google updates to keep up with! Were you impacted by any of the algorithm or SERP changes this year?

December Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

December brings with it a bit of fun and whimsy. Enjoy our monthly social media roundup. Which post was your favorite?

“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” – Henry Ford

Office

It was a rainy day today, but the rain did not take the sunshine from our team!

Rain

We might not get snow here in Mesa, Arizona, but we can pretend, right? What’s in your Winterland?

Christmas

Words do matter. Choose them wisely.

Words

Where you invest your love, you invest your life.

Invest

December Marketing Blog Roundup

What does 2015 have in store for your website and marketing strategies? These helpful blogs will guide you into a successful new year. Read on!

2015 Digital Marketing Trends

The 2015 Digital Marketing trend predictions are out. Mobile, content and technology are in! Are you prepared for the new year?

How to Become a SEO Winner in 2015

You, your business, your website, your products and services, your budget and your team are unique! Shouldn’t your website marketing strategies ALSO be unique? Here are 5 BIG reasons why your website needs a custom marketing strategy.

How To Use Google’s Display Campaigns To Build Your Brand

Need a quick way to build exposure for a new product? With Google’s Display Network, you can quickly reach your target audience and tell a story with your ads. Here’s how.

New Year’s Resolutions for Your Digital Marketing Campaigns

As the New Year approaches, a lot of us are thinking of ways we can improve ourselves as individuals. As marketers, we should be thinking of ways we can improve our digital marketing campaigns for our clients. Here are some New Year’s resolution ideas for your campaigns.

See Ya Online!

It’s official, 2015 is here and we are already ROCKIN! While everyone else is laying low for the holidays we were busy developing new strategies and kicking off new campaigns. It’s not too late for you to do the same! If you’re ready for a new approach to marketing your business in 2015, just give us a ring at 800.871.4130 and let us create a killer plan for your business this year!

And… until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Vol. 37: 2014 is Coming to a Close, More on Google Penguin

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2014 is Coming to a Close

2014 Is Coming to a Close

Max MonsterCan you believe another year has already passed us by? It’s hard to believe in less than a month it will be 2015! This year was a big one for Eminent SEO. We celebrated 5 years of business, launched a new website, expanded our client list and grew our team.

Now that December is here we are excited for the holidays. This year our team is having our annual Ugly Sweater Holiday Party again. Check out last year’s December newsletter for fun pictures of the ESEO team in our ugly sweaters here. Do you have an annual company holiday party? What do you do to celebrate with your team?

Good to Know in SEO (RIGHT NOW)

Google Penguin Updated… Again:

Just a few days ago SE Roundtable posted a blog stating that Google Penguin updated, again! Although the update is still unconfirmed by Google, many webmasters are commenting about changes to their rankings – in a good way.

From Barry Schwartz on December 5th:
“On Thanksgiving day, Google started to reverse Penguin penalties (I know Google doesn’t call them penalties). This was a good thing and Google actually confirmed this was part of the Penguin 3.0 rollout. Then on Thursday, those gains were rolled back for many. When John Mueller of Google was asked about it, he didn’t seem to know what was going on. Now this morning, the reversals seem to have been reversed and now sites hit are Penguin free, or at least some.”

What’s interesting is the webmasters are mainly talking about recoveries – saying things such as:

“Since yesterday I notice sites (more than a few) that were slapped between 10 and 20 October (rankings fall 200+) are now completely regaining their rankings… So, did Penguin devalued certain links (and thus slapped all these sites) and now it’s backtracking (or whatever it’s called) and as such releasing all these sites?”

What do you think? Have you seen fluctuations or what appear to be recoveries? Let us know in the comments!

November Eminent SEO Social Media Roundup

Here it is: your monthly roundup of some of our favorite Eminent SEO social media posts from November. Enjoy!

“Be genius!”
Be Genius

“These little reminders will add color to your life. Go for it, add them, what are you waiting for?”
Reminders

“T. E. A. M. = Together Everyone Achieves More.”
TEAM

“$100 Million: Estimated amount that Samsung spends on Facebook advertising per year, making the creator of the Galaxy phone the largest advertiser on Facebook.”
100 Million

“Your words define your actions… Be grateful!”
Be Grateful

November Marketing Blog Roundup

7 Reasons Why You Need A Website Redesign
Thinking about redesigning your website? Here are 7 reasons why you should.

2015 Digital Marketing Trends
The 2015 digital marketing trends are out. Mobile, content and technology is in. Are you prepared for next year?

Why Your Website Needs a Custom Marketing Strategy
You, your business, your website, your products and services, your budget and your team are unique! Shouldn’t your website marketing strategies ALSO be unique? Here are 5 BIG reasons why your website needs a custom marketing strategy.

Why Your SEO Campaign Needs Social Media
Social media and SEO go together kind of like peanut butter and jelly. When you you’re missing one, you’re missing out on that extra boost in reaching your target audience. Here are some reasons why your SEO campaign needs social media.

How To Use Social Media To Build Your Brand
Social media has become a primary brand building resource for businesses who want an affordable and measurable way to build their brand. Are you integrating social media into your branding strategy? Here are some tips on how to use social media to build your brand.

See Ya Online!

So long 2014… You’ve been so good to us! We are wishing you and yours a spectacular holiday season and a prosperous 2015!

Are you looking forward to 2015? What do you have planned for the new year? Share in the comments with us.

Until next time, see ya online!

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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Why Your Website Needs a Custom Marketing Strategy

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Custom Marketing Strategy by Eminent SEO

Because of what we do, our team gets a lot of requests for prepackaged website solutions. We understand that individuals and companies looking for website marketing are often unsure of exactly what they need and how much it should cost, which is why it might seem like the best approach is to review existing packages and their pricing. However, we feel differently. Our issue with pre-made packages is they are cookie cutter and don’t necessarily work for everyone.

Here Are 5 Reasons Why Your Website Needs A Custom Marketing Strategy

1. Your Industry, Products, Services, Company and Geographical Locations Are Unique

Each industry is represented differently on-line. For example, some industries have a stronger online presence than others, causing unique levels of difficultly per vertical. The same can be said for specific products and services. If you happen to offer a nationwide service, such as website design, for example, you are going to be competing with a lot more websites than say someone who offers a local service like AC repair to only a few nearby cities.

Because there are so many unique variables in the make-up of your company, a custom approach to marketing is the only thing that makes sense. You don’t want to be underdoing it OR overdoing it. You need a professional marketer to assess your needs based off of how you are and who your competitors are so they can make a realistic suggestion for your needs specifically.

2. Your Website History Is Unique

Your current website and its online history plays a huge role in determining what your marketing approach should be. A new website, for example, is going to have to work a lot harder to build a foundation for organic marketing than an older, more established site.

A professional marketer should evaluate your website history, including things like: age of the domain, number of existing indexed pages, number of existing backlinks, current domain authority, website crawlability, etc. This ensures all important and existing foundational website elements are being considered when determining what type of marketing approach you should take.

3. Your Marketing History Is Unique

Similar to your website history, assessing your marketing history is equally important. If your website is old but you’re new to online marketing, you have to approach organic marketing like you are a new site. On the other hand, if you are an older site with a long history with organic marketing, you can be a lot more aggressive in your approach.

Before we create a custom marketing proposal for a new prospect we always look at their organic marketing history. We specifically look at things like: what methods of marketing you deployed previously, what you are currently doing to market your site/brand, what types of backlinks your website has (as well as how many and the associated anchor text used), what social platforms are in place that can be leveraged, etc. If we find something is wrong or done poorly we know we need to address those issues before we begin marketing, otherwise your marketing dollars might be spent in vain.

4. Your Budget Is Unique

Let’s face it, not everyone has the budget to do everything they need or want to do for their business. If you come in with a smaller budget but we determine your website needs more than you can afford in order to be successful, we aren’t going to simply sell you a package in your price range. That only sets you AND us up for failure.

Instead, skilled marketers should be able to assess everything that needs to be done and then, if budget is limited, prioritize the “to-do” list. We work with our clients to create short term and long term strategies in the form of monthly phases that allow us to work on the priority list one month at a time without blowing the budget.

5. Your In-house Team Is Unique

A website needs a lot of work in addition to the marketing in order to ensure continued visibility and conversions. For example, Google won’t value and rank a site that has server issues, duplicate or outdated content, broken links, etc. On that same note, users won’t trust your site if when they visit, the content is poorly written, the design is out of date, the pages take too long to load, etc.

If you already have a team in-house that manages the technical elements, writes content, manages social media, etc. then your custom strategy can be built with that in mind. However, if we find that your team can’t handle the website work or you simply don’t have the bandwidth or know-how to complete the work, we can build these important management and maintenance services into your custom proposal.

The Nutshell:

You, your business, your website, your products and services, your budget and your team are unique! Shouldn’t your website marketing strategies ALSO be unique?

Let us help you develop a custom approach to your organic marketing campaigns. We will get to know you, your business and specific needs and then, after auditing your website and marketing history, we can provide you with a solid plan that will produce a real ROI.

Is there any other way?

Learn more about our Custom Marketing Strategies here… or just pick up the phone and call us to get started: 800.871.4130.

Avatar for Jenny Stradling

Jenny Stradling

Owner and CEO at Eminent SEO in Mesa, Arizona. I started doing SEO and marketing in 2005. I'm a busy mom of four of my own and two step kids (and a grandbaby!). I owe my sanity to my partner in work and life, Chris Weatherall. I love sharing and engaging in business and marketing conversations, and I'm heavy into social media and blogging on these topics. I focus on quality, ethics, strategy, data and getting results. I work with a variety of brands and businesses with a special focus on addiction treatment marketing. I do this work because I care about making a difference.

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