Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is making your website easy to read by search engines. I wouldn’t go so far as calling Google stupid (it is, quite likely, the largest artificial brain on the planet) but it thinks in very different ways than we do. Part of the reason Google think so differently is that it has massive amounts of data to sort through, in its unique thinking process. You can’t just ‘tell’ something to Google. You have to spoon feed it.

SEO is how you spoon feed the search engines.

search engine optimization for red tricycleWhen someone is searching for red tricycles, Google will ignore a site that is dedicated to the history and development of the Radio Flyer company, with detailed specs and blueprints about the carry load on different models, if the site has no SEO. Thats why you often see annoying sites at the top of your google search titled “RED TRICYCLE WHEEL RED TRICYCLE PEDALS SEATS NOW.”

That website spoon fed to Google everything that the site was about. Google ate it up.

Here’s how you can do it:

Easy Search Engine Optimization Tips

  • Get bold. When you bold a word, Google assumes there is more importance about it.
  • Find the keys to your words. A ‘keyword‘ is a word that people use to search for your subject. Pepper your content with keywords that people will use to find them, and then – use them on your headings.
  • Make Headings. Keywords in the headings of your content (h2 and h3 tags) are seen by search engines as especially important. You can write your post with keyword research first, headings second, and content third.
  • Alt your images. Put your keywords into the Alt Text of your images – Google can’t read your image, but it can read your alt text. (My tricycle up above – hover over the image with your mouse to see what it says.)
  • Get backlinked. When someone else on another website links to your site, Google thinks you have valuable content, too, and you’re not just screaming your head off in the wilderness. Some search engine optimizations specialists make their living just on backlinks. (Be careful, though…many of them wear black hats.)
  • Get deeplinks. Don’t just link to your homepage. Link to sub-pages, or specific posts. It shows that you have a wealth of information all over your site, not just a good homepage.
  • Trade content. Those other websites that do what you do? Or do something tangentially related to what you do? They like SEO, too. Guest post on each other’s blogs, and link back to each other.
  • Get shared. There are fantastic, automated plugins you can use to allow readers to share your content with the click of a button. Use them, so your content can be used by others.
  • Tag your pages. Not with graffiti, but with meta tags, alt tags, and other techie stuff that should be easy if you’ve got search engine optimization plugins like Yoast or All-In-One SEO pack on your WordPress-powered website.
  • Don’t be dense. For a while, ‘keyword density’ was sooooo important that thousands of websites repeated their keywords every keyword other keyword word in their keyword article. Google is not stupid. (Biggest brain on the planet.) Their algorithm was modified, and now frowns on sites that attempt to spoon-feed it garbage.
  • Do some research. Use Google’s own free keyword planning tool to find out how people are searching for sites like yours, and write new and interesting content about those subjects.
  • Get friendly. Do an unexpected favor for other website owners in your sphere. Comment on their blogs. Participate in their conversations. You will find them returning the favor, because we all like to have friends.

“Caelan has done a phenomenal job on our SEO. We are the number one site that comes up in our area for any alternative health related search. We are also coming up on the first page of results for conventional medical searches! We love Caelan and his thoughtful, conscientious work on the design and the SEO of our site, thanks Caelan!”

Alisun Bonville

Naturopathic Doctor, Spring Integrative Health

eCommerce Shopping Carts

eCommerce Shopping Carts

At its core, the purpose of your website is to help strangers become customers. The transaction where this formally happens on the Internet is usually in eCommerce shopping carts.

The moment a new customer pays you for the first time, that is when they are putting their money where their mouth is; they know, like, and trust you, and believe in you enough that they are willing to invest their hard-earned dollars and purchase your product, your service, or your mission.

This is a crucial transition point, because if your digital infrastructure fails them here, they may never trust you again.

What are the best eCommerce Shopping Carts for small businesses?

There are many variables that factor into selecting the best ecommerce platform for your small business. You can schedule a consultation with us to get customized recommendations on the best shopping cart for your website; generally we find that the platform you want corresponds to the level of your business.

Amateur – Gumroad
Professional – Freshbooks
Rising Star – Woocommerce
Illuminator – InfusionSoft

If you’re just starting out, don’t bother with the difficulty and challenges of internet security. Gumroad has a really simple set-up process, it looks great, and it lets you sell digital products easily.

If you’ve been doing this for a while, Freshbooks is the best online accounting and invoicing software on the market. You can add clients and send them invoices with ease, which they can pay with PayPal or a credit card.

By the time you are ready to start handling transactions on your own website, it’s time to look at WooCommerce. This extensible plugin has a myriad of integrations, and can support sophisticated shopping cart functions on any WordPress website.

When you are ready to scale, InfusionSoft provides the complicated post-purchase nurture sequences of the best marketing automation platforms. Be warned: it’s not easy to set up or use, which is why it’s nickname is ‘ConfusionSoft.’

Can I set up an eCommerce Shopping Cart myself?

The short answer is: yes, if that’s really how you want to spend your time.

There are so many perils and pitfalls, though, that most people find it best to hire an expert to handle the technical installation, SSL encryption, payment gateways, and merchant accounts.

Each one of these components could take you a week or more to figure out, and you may run into issues that take experienced programmers many hours to overcome.

If you are growing your business, your time is best spent leveraging your greatest genius. If programming shopping carts is not where your brilliance is, build your team with those geniuses – or at the very least, get some good advice.

Schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation and we will help you figure out your next move.

“Caelan is a talented digital marketer who is always in beast mode – always zoned in, every pixel, every letter, every plugin, every line. He will help you discover the online success you’ve been hunting for.”

Andy Horner

Founder and CEO, Outstand Email Marketing Platform

Third Party Integrations

Third Party Integrations

Third party integrations can be confusing, but any website that is more than brochure-ware needs to manage multiple platforms by using them.

What is 3rd party integration?

Third party integrations with WordPress websites are when you sync another platform or account with your website, allowing a free and open exchange of data between your website and the third-party platform.

Examples:

You have an ESP (Email Service Provider) that sends out your email newsletter. People can sign up for your newsletter on your website. When they do, a 3rd party integration allows the newsletter form on your website to seamlessly pass the data to your ESP.

How does a 3rd Party Integration work?

Usually, a third-party integration passes data along an API, an Application Programming Interface. This is a set of programming commands that define what kinds of data is communicated between applications, and how that data is formatted.

The most common time that website owners interact with an API is with their API key. This is a random string of characters that verifies one program to pass data onto another – for example, your ESP has an API key, that is unique to your account. When you install their plugin onto your sidebar, so people can signup for your newsletter, it is the API key that tells the signup form how the data is to be formatted, which ESP it is going to, and to which account within that ESP the data needs to be delivered.

Many 3rd party integrations, especially in eCommerce websites, require customizations of arcane settings in order to get them to function smoothly for the user. Spending lots of time trying to figure these myriad options can be frustrating to even computer programmers; if you are not a programmer, and you find yourself spending hours fiddling with the settings of one of your WordPress plugins, it is time to work with someone who knows these plugins inside and out, so you can get back to doing what you do best.

Third Party Integrations With WordPress Plugins We Use Frequently

  • iMember 360
  • WooCommerce
  • Toolset
  • Zapier
  • PayPal
  • Mailchimp
  • Aweber
  • Constant Contact
  • Google Analytics
  • Amazon Web Services
  • ZenDesk
  • IFTTT
  • Buffer
  • Gravity Forms
  • Formidable
  • Contact form 7
  • Yoast
  • Wistia
  • YouTube
  • Vimeo
  • GetResponse
  • App.net

Do you have a complicated 3rd party integration with your website that we can help you with? Contact us today to tell us about what you’re working on.

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