It certain is frustrating sometimes, right? Trying to figure out how to get customers to leave reviews for your business is one of those things that keeps many business owners up at night! Positive reviews are a major factor in getting better search results for a small business.
You’ve exceeded your customer’s expectations with your product or service. You’ve under-promised and over-delivered. Maybe you’ve taken a loss for them. Or you’ve worked late to get their projects done.
Above and beyond. You’ve earned a certain level of praise, for sure!
And when you talk to them, they’ll even tell you how much they love you. So why won’t they do it? Why won’t they write a review?
Barriers Keep Customers From Writing Reviews
Happy customers are generally open to the idea of writing a review. Unhappy customers on the other hand, are far more motivated express their frustration online and write negative reviews.
But both customers are in the minority.
The vast majority of customers simply don’t leave reviews. They don’t offer feedback. There’s a wide variety of reasons but it really comes down to four common barriers.
Aside from expectations, these barriers determine whether you’ll be able to get a customer to write a review.
So, how do you get more customers to write reviews?
You eliminate the barriers.
But first, you have to identify them.
Get a Free Reviews Scan and Local Business Listing Audit!
Barrier #4: Happy customers are secretly unhappy
Most customers aren’t open with the companies they do business with. The sad part? Many happy customers are secretly unhappy.
For every customer who bothers to complain, 26 other customers remain silent. Source: White House Office of Consumer Affairs
A typical business hears from 4% of its dissatisfied customers. Source: “Understanding Customers” by Ruby Newell-Legner
Resolve a complaint in the customer’s favor and they’ll do business with you again 70% of the time. Source: Lee Resources
91% of unhappy customers will not be willing to do business with you again. Source: Lee Resources
Here’s the real reason customers won’t tell us the truth. We’re socialized to be “nice.” Telling the truth often comes with unpleasant consequences.
And when it doesn’t?
Delivering bad news or constructive criticism feels yucky, especially when customers feel it’s petty, tiny or insignificant. Even delivering good news can create headaches. Especially when the recipient of that news takes it pretty hard or reacts negatively.
For some customers it’s just not worth it.
Most of these customers feel it’s better to simply keep their thoughts, feedback and opinions to themselves.
So, how do you fix this?
Create an environment of safety.
On the surface that sounds easy but it can be difficult to put into practice. Here are a few strategies you can test in your business.
Welcome horrible reviews. A negative review is a wonderful opportunity. It’s a chance for you to show prospective customers you’re a safe company to do business with. When something goes wrong customers know you’ll take good care of them. Thank customers for their unpleasant review, act on their feedback, then show what you’ve done.
Ask customers for good, bad and ugly feedback. Reassure customers, letting them know it’s safe for them to hold you and your staff accountable. Then, keep your word. New customers will test you; they’ll attempt to verify your words. Handle it well and you’ve earned their trust (and a review). Mess things up and they’ll quietly slip away.
Improve staff EQ. Give staff the incentives they need to eliminate dysfunctional behavior. Use training, resources and tools to eliminate the big four relationship killers – condescension, contempt, defensiveness and stonewalling. Be kind, be helpful or your chance at a review will be gone.
Promote clarity over persuasion. Anticipate and defuse concerns, objections, risks and fears ahead of time. Create policies that ensure customers feel safe and treated well.
Barrier #3: Customers don’t remember what you did
When you’ve done a great job, customers tend to forget. Do a bad job and customers never forget.
We all have a negative bias.
As people, we’re on an obsessive hunt for problems. For disasters, fears, and frustrations. Research shows we’re far more attuned to the negative events in our lives than we are to the positive.
Our negative bias keeps us safe.
It’s an important survival mechanism we depend on from the time we’re born.
Problems create stress and anxiety.
Solutions (you) relieve stress and anxiety.
When you give customers the solution they so desperately need, you give them relief. That’s a good thing (obviously) but it’s also a bad thing.
Because relief induces forgetfulness.
The longer you wait to ask customers for their feedback (or a review) the less likely they are to remember what you actually did for them.
So, how do you fix this?
It’s simple. You ask customers for their feedback or a review, immediately or shortly after they’ve purchased and used your product.
Kind of obvious, right?
There’s actually a better way. You prime the pump. When you sign customers up, you tell them you’re going to do a regular check-in to make sure they’re taken care of, like this:
We’re excited that you’ve decided to join our tribe and have you as a customer!
And we want to make sure you’re taken care of. So, I want to reach out to you for a quick 2 min chat to make sure you’re in a good place with everything.
Would that be okay?
You can use this check-in to share feedback, concerns, complaints, vent about a problem – it’s all fair game!
Just let me know when it would be convenient for you for us to connect.
You’ll obviously want to customize things for your business, but you catch my drift, right? Then, you schedule each “check-in” with your customers. If you can, it’s also a great idea to use an automated review management tool (like fistbump.reviews) to automate review requests. Review conversion rates go way up when the email “ask” is combined with a face to face request.
Save live chats, record phone calls (get permission), save emails.
You dramatically reduce churn and you gain valuable insights to make them happy. And the best part? Customer reviews are baked right in!
Barrier #2: It’s too hard to write or share a review
Great success! You have a customer who’s able and willing to share a positive review. They decide to search for your business on Yelp and they see this.
Customers can’t seem to find the right account or profile…
They spent 15 min writing a review only to lose it…
Customers stop caring when it becomes tough to actually write a review – whether that’s on your site or a third party site.
You know what that means.
They lose interest and they abandon their review. And just like that the opportunity is gone.
Here’s the thing.
It’s not just about technical difficulties. It’s also about direction. Customers don’t always know where to write or share their review.
They need direction from you.
So, how do you fix this?
You make things ridiculously simple. You make it incredibly easy for them to write a review. Then you show them where you’d like their reviews to go, like this:
Your feedback was amazing! Thanks so much for sharing.
Would you be willing to share your feedback and advice with other customers if it only took 30 seconds?
Please let me know, Dan
It’s ridiculously easy for customers to respond. All they have to do is write a “Yes” or “No.”
Okay. They’ve said yes. What do you do?
Thanks so much, Angie!
Here’s what you can do.
Copy and paste your review below.
Click this link (link to your preferred review site)
Paste your review, select a rating and click Done
[Customer’s review transcript goes here]
Alright… What if they say “No?”
No problem! Thanks for letting me know. I’m curious, what is it about sharing feedback that isn’t working for you?
You’ll have some customers who ignore you anyway. That’s fine. Focus on the customers who answer. Thank them for their feedback, act on it (if possible), then show them that you’ve taken their advice.
What if you don’t want to do the personal follow up? What if you’re looking for a systematic way to attract customer reviews?
If you’re looking for a scalable way to attract reviews you’ll need your review funnel. Semi-automation is key if you’re looking to gain traction quickly. Using your review funnel gives you the ability to scale quickly, reminding customers to write a review and share their feedback.
Barrier #1: Customers don’t know what to say.
The biggest hidden barrier by far is awareness. Many customers simply don’t know what to say. So, rather than struggling with it they simply do nothing.
You can change that.
You can guide customers. Does this mean you’re telling customers what to say and when to say it?
It means you’re focused on asking the right questions. Why do questions matter? And, how on earth will questions get you the amazing reviews you’re looking for?
“Questions are places in your mind where answers fit. If you haven’t asked the question, the answer has nowhere to go. It hits your mind and bounces right off. You have to ask the question – you have to want to know – in order to open up the space for the answer to fit.”
Customers can’t teach you about their experience until you’re ready to learn.
Ask the right questions and you give customers the fuel they need to create amazing reviews.
Because reviews flow from feedback.
Ask customers the right question and the barrier – I don’t know what to say – fades away.
Which questions do you ask and when?
First, start with the basics.
What would have prevented you from buying?
What did you find as a result of buying this?
What did you like most about our product (or service)?
What would be three other benefits to this product (or service)?
Would you recommend this to someone else? Why, or why not?
You can add in additional questions as needed provided that you make it easy for your customers.
Make it easy, and barriers come tumbling down.
Aren’t barriers unnecessary?
Believe it or not barriers are necessary. Sounds crazy doesn’t it? Who makes it harder for customers to write positive reviews?
You do, if you’re a savvy marketer.
Reviews are like magnets. Customers are drawn to them. That’s a problem if you have the wrong customers.
Have discount shoppers? Offer great service and you’ll attract more of their penny pinching friends.
Provide lots of “handholding?” You’ll attract more of the same demanding customers.
Nightmare customer writes you a positive review? You’ll attract more customer predators looking to take advantage of your generosity.
What if removing barriers doesn’t get customers to write a review?
It won’t for everyone.
But you’re not looking for everyone. You’re looking for all-stars, customer evangelists who’ll tell everyone they know about your business.
The diamonds in the rough.
How To Get Customers To Leave Reviews
You’ve exceeded their expectations. You’ve under-promised and over-delivered. You’ve taken a loss for them. You’ve gone above and beyond.
But when it comes to writing a review for you, they’ll still continue to struggle with following through…
If these barriers remain intact that is. When you discuss things with them, they’ll be full of praise. When you ask for feedback they’ll do their best to be nice. But these barriers will keep them from writing a review.
How many times have you turned to a search engine when trying to find information? Google gets 63,000 search requests each second. So, that number is probably too high to count. Search engines have become our go-to places to find information, search for products, and locate businesses. Which is why SEO strategy is absolutely critical for businesses.
These tactics help you to be seen more often by the right type of customer. But nailing your strategy down can be a bit tricky. There are a lot of options and ways to go about boosting your SEO. That’s why you have to be sure to pick the right ones.
Follow our tips for a successful digital marketing strategy.
1. Stay True to Your Brand
As you’re working to create a digital marketing strategy including SEO tactics, the most important thing is to stay true to your brand throughout.
Your business’ branding and story are what connect your audience to your service or product. Creating a clear view of who you are and what you’re about generates brand loyalty, which drives up revenue.
There may be marketing tactics that have seen some success for other businesses but if they’re not in line with your brand’s story, you should steer clear of them.
Every move you make should be conscious to target an audience and bring them in by being true to who you are.
2. Focus on Keywords
The whole idea behind SEO is to add keywords that will bring up your site during regular online searches.
These keywords are ranked based on their ability to bring people in and the frequency of use. They are added into regular blog posts, product descriptions, and other online content. As people search for those keywords, they’re more likely to find your site.
Finding the right balance in keywords is a critical part of a good SEO strategy. You want to add in keywords that will draw people in but don’t want to stuff your content too full to become too generalized.
A little research upfront will help you to develop a list of a few keywords that will be most beneficial for your business. Stick with those to begin with.
Suggested Resource: Discover the best keywords for you using our $5 gig on Fiverr…
3. Build Page Authority
After you’ve created your list of keywords, it’s time to start implementing them and building page authority.
Page authority is an important marker of successful SEO strategies. It’s a measurement of how well a website page will do in search results, meaning how often it will come up high in the search results.
There are many factors to getting a good page authority score but it will ultimately look different for every company. But keeping this score in mind and making changes to improve it can help you get where you want to be.
4. Pay Attention to Image
We’ve already discussed how the content you’re putting out (especially the keywords) needs to be representative of your brand. But everything you put out as a whole needs to send the right message.
It doesn’t do much good to work hard to get great SEO strategies going and drive traffic to your site to then have people immediately leave it.
There are many elements to a successful website (design, content, images, ease of navigation to mention a few) and they all need to portray the right message to any visitors.
One of the biggest benefits of SEO is that it draws people in who will actually be interested in your company. So you need to keep them around with the full package.
5. Work with a Professional
On the surface, SEO strategy seems very simple and a straightforward way to getting your company more customers.
But in reality, there are so many nuances and details that it can be easy to overlook something that would make a big difference. This is why it’s often very helpful to work with a trained SEO and marketing professional.
These professionals have a very clear, educated understanding of all of the factors that go into a successful campaign.
They can help you to narrow down your focus, give you the tools to write engaging content, and put your brand on the map. Having an outside perspective can help give you a clear understanding of where you’re at and where you can go.
6. Track and Measure Traffic
There’s no way to know if your SEO efforts are working if you don’t take regular measurements. And there’s really no point in making such efforts if you don’t know how helpful (or not) they’ve been.
One of the key elements to track is the traffic your site or page is getting after it has been optimized.
Most website hosts have backend options to handle all of the tracking and measuring for you. But you need to know how to read and analyze them beforehand to get a real, accurate picture of the progress you’re making.
7. Keep Current on Trends
The online business world is always changing. It evolves with new technologies, current events, and popular business operations. To stay current you have to stay updated on trends and changes in more efficient marketing strategies.
You can do this by attending or participating in seminars, webinars, and classes focused on digital marketing strategy.
Sometimes it’s easy to think that once we’ve done something for our business it’s permanent and the only option. But in reality, things are much more fluid and can change often. Being flexible for changes to adapt to trends can help keep you current and in the public eye.
Building a Strong SEO Strategy
Getting your name, brand, and product into the world for new customers to discover you is critical to success. SEO strategy is a great way to grow your audience organically by making sure people can find you.
Each company will need to utilize different strategies and tools to get to their goals. But the key is to make conscious efforts to be putting out quality content that boosts your traffic.
If you’re interested in getting started and working with a professional to develop your unique strategy, contact us today!
If you’re looking to improve your visibility on search engines and drive more traffic to your website, then Fiverr SEO gigs can be a great way to get you some good traction. The Fiverr Marketplace makes finding the services you need easily accessible and affordable. That means you can explore and try different services without making a major commitment to an SEO provider.
However, SEO is a process, not just a one-time event. It’s important that you’re strategic in your approach.
That’s what this guide is about. It’s designed to help you start from the beginning, and understand (at a basic level) how to use various types of SEO gigs to get you the kind of results you want to see.
But first, let’s explore briefly why using Fiverr SEO gigs can be a good approach to fulfilling your needs.
Why Fiverr SEO Gigs Can Be Good For You
The platform started as a marketplace for $5 services from freelancers. You could find anything from logo design to animation videos to SEO services (and much more). Buyers for these services could find and compare options to meet their needs, all with a very low investment to get the work done. It’s been a great tool for startups, entrepreneurs, bloggers, and just about anyone trying to build a brand online.
Over the years, the platform has evolved to make it even more robust. While it’s still the home of the $5 gig, you can find many more advanced services (full website design, etc) which can cost much more. This means the level of talent there isn’t limited to freelancers who are only willing to work for only $5. It’s not realistic to find a web designer who is only willing to build your website for just $5. But you can find highly rated freelancers who also offer web design services (at often still affordable prices).
A few factors that make the Fiverr platform a great place to find talent are:
Its affordability makes many services more accessible to brands who don’t have monster budgets.
Gigs are typically scalable. That means you can get an entry-level service for a low price, or you can upgrade for more features and/or faster completion timelines.
The built-in review system means that every gig is rated by the buyers. This gives the freelancers a high level of motivation to deliver well on all of their gigs or risk not getting the work they desire.
Seller levels also show you who is consistently delivering at a high level. This means you can pick someone who has proven themselves over and over again.
With that, let’s take a look at six Fiver SEO services that you can use right now to build a stronger presence on search engines.
The first thing you should be looking at when trying to improve your SEO is the technical structure of the website itself. Some of the most common factors that limit websites are technical issues resulting in broken links, slow page load speeds, missing code/information on pages and posts, and many other issues.
Therefore, getting a deep scan on your website can reveal specific actions you can take to ensure you have a technically strong website.
Many of the issues have easy fixes, especially in a WordPress website with good hosting. A good technical SEO audit report will also prioritize the importance of the issues for the greatest impact. If you have a little technical knowledge, you might be able to correct the issues on your own. But a good upgrade to this report includes having the experts to take care of everything for you.
Once you have a strong technical foundation with your website, the next step is to understand the keywords people are using to get there. And this is more than the simple term(s) you use to describe your own service. The key here is finding the terms other people use to find you.
With an SEO Keyword Research Report, we start with the core keywords you use to describe what you’re offering on your website. Then we look at exact match, phrase match, broad match, and related keyword terms.
From this data, we’re able to prioritize the keyword phrases by things like total monthly search volume, keyword difficulty, and potential click rates. That information can inform several other aspects of your SEO strategy, including overall website architecture, topics for blog posts, and terms used in link-building strategies.
The next step continues with the on-site SEO theme. Once you’ve corrected the technical foundation, and you know the keyword terms you should be targeting, then a good on-page optimization service will help you ensure the content on the page is well optimized for the target keyword(s).
These reports provide optimization ideas related to strategy, SERP features, backlink opportunities, semantic content, technical SEO, and user experience.
Additionally, these reports are great for any page you want to get ranked, not just the homepage. So if you have pages for core products, service areas, or other authority pages, then run this on each one to ensure you’re maximizing your opportunity to get found for a range of terms.
Now that you’ve taken care of all of the on-site elements, we can start evaluating how the search engines see your site. That’s where a Keyword Positions Report can help us see what terms you’re currently ranking for, and the positions you rank for them.
This information can be used in a variety of ways. Typically, when we build an SEO strategy for our clients, we look for low-hanging fruit in order to achieve some easy wins. The goal is always to get terms ranking in the top three positions on the first page, which is where over half of all clicks go. So we look for the terms in positions 4-10 on the first page and terms on pages two and three of the results. With these terms, we can try some of the more simple tactics that can get the site ranking better more quickly.
Exactly how we use this information can vary quite a bit, which is why a consult is a good follow-up to this report. We can help sort through the data to ensure you have the right plan for how to move forward.
Link-building is still one of the most powerful signals we can send to search engines to show the value of a page/site. And while there are several tactics we use to create a strong backlink portfolio, there is one thing we’ve seen make a huge difference for local business rankings. Creating (or cleaning up) your local business citations has proven to be a crucial factor in strong rankings.
Basically, there are hundreds (if not thousands) of online directories that have (or could have) listings for your business. Yelp is a big one. But there are lots of those kinds of sites. And there are two keys to leveraging these directories. First, it’s important to ensure the NAP (name, address, phone) matches what Google and your website show. Inaccurate listings can damage your credibility, and therefore negatively impact your rankings. Second, each of these listings typically has a link back to your website. And quite often these are from higher-authority websites, which results in good credibility links boosting your authority.
The report shows you the accuracy of your listings on top directory websites. Then cleaning up those listings (or creating them where they don’t exist) is a high impact service we suggest for every small business.
As I mentioned earlier, good SEO is a process. That’s why having an ongoing content strategy is one of the best things you can do to increase your website’s overall keyword value. It not only increases the number of terms you can end up ranking for, but it also creates more entry points onto your site that can potentially reach the coveted top three positions.
Blogging for your business is tricky, though. By now I’m sure you can see how strongly we feel about leveraging the data and being strategic about the approach. That’s why we like to do a little content research using the target keywords.
Research like this can be done for every blog post you produce. And it’s the foundation for every blog post our team of SEO writers produces. Ultimately, the goal is to produce content that has search engine and social media value. This approach can help you build a library of great resources that can drive traffic for years to come.
Premium: Content Research + 1,000-Word Post ($170)
Final Thoughts On Fiverr SEO Gigs
It’s not super difficult to drive substantial traffic to your website through search engines. But you do need to be strategic about how you go about it.
You can leverage Fiverr SEO gigs to help you explore SEO services and drive more traffic to your website. It’s important, however, to not just go out and buy random gigs making big promises. You should know where you are with your website, where you want to go with traffic, and where your greatest opportunities for traffic can be found. Then build a plan that drives you towards your goals.
If you want to start by chatting through any of this, we’re always happy to talk (for free) and get you pointed in the right direction. You can schedule some time with us anytime. And feel free to grab some of the gigs featured here to get your SEO strategy moving in the right direction.
Most of the small businesses we work with don’t have huge marketing budgets, so they need affordable local SEO services. But navigating the complex landscape of search engine optimization for small local businesses isn’t easy.
Either the strategies are too confusing, or the budget required to get results is (way) too high. Or both.
That’s usually a recipe for a hopeless business owner/manager. Many who find themselves in this spot either:
Walk away and give up on the idea of ever ranking a website on search engines
Invest in cheap (and very questionable) tactics that ultimately can get them penalized
Getting on the first page of Google too often feels like a pipe-dream. Especially for people in ultra-competitive markets.
And that’s where we were with one real estate agent (in Florida). The thought of getting on page one of search results organically seemed out of the question. As a result, the client dished a lot of money into some very expensive Google Ads.
The problem with ads is that the second you stop paying for them, they go away. So we wanted to build some natural rankings that would stay there.
The good news?
We stayed focused, with a limited budget, on some key SEO strategies that ended up driving some pretty nice results.
That was an ultra-competitive market with tons of hardcore competition. So if we can see these kinds of results there, then it’s absolutely possible to do it on other niches as well.
Let’s take a look at what happened…
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IMPACT OF LOCAL SEO SERVICES THAT GET YOU ON PAGE ONE
If you can get onto page one of the search results, then that can drive a significant amount of traffic. And those are potential customers who are actively looking for what you have to offer!
Better than that, if you could get into one of the top three positions, then that’s even better! Studies have shown that approximately 62% of search engine traffic goes to websites ranked in the first three positions (33% to position one, 18% to position two, and 11% to position three).
Our studies have also shown that the quality of traffic coming from organic (non-paid ad) search results is typically higher quality (more time on site, lower bounce rates, etc) than traffic coming from the paid ads.
Basically, not all traffic is equal.
And generally speaking, higher quality traffic is more likely to convert into a lead or customer (considering your website is built to optimize for conversions).
Local SEO has some unique factors as well. It’s not just about targeting keywords. You also need to drill down to geographic locations. You can’t just add keywords like “[your niche] near me” on your web pages and expect it to flood in the traffic who are looking for you.
And that’s where most business owners stumble.
Getting the right mix of the right tactics is important. Oh, and without breaking the budget, pretty please.
WORKING IN A HIGHLY-COMPETITIVE NICHE
As we worked out the strategy with this client, generating leads was the single most important desired result. Part of the downside of a great SEO strategy is that it just doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to build the reputation on search engines required to get and stay on page one.
Truth be told, they didn’t have time to wait for the organic rankings to come.
So they made a large monthly investment ($2,000/mo+) in Google AdWords. The results weren’t always fantastic. But they were results. Enough to justify the investment.
We just wanted better rankings and higher-quality leads.
That meant that we needed to establish a high level of local credibility online.
Being a real estate agent in Florida is a tough market too. There are literally thousands of them in the local area, and every one wants their website to rank on page one. Standing out in a market like that is certainly a high order!
Building Authority and Momentum in a Competitive Niche
The initial baseline report at the end of December showed a very low volume of total keywords, especially those on the first page. Just one term ranked on the first page, and there were only six total keywords on the first three pages. And while there were other terms ranking on pages 4-10, the overall volume was still pretty insignificant.
The September report (nine full months later) showed a very different picture. We increased the number of keywords ranking pretty significantly:
Page 1 results increased from 1 to 10 (a 900% increase)
Pages 1-3 results increased from 6 to 82 (a 1267% increase)
Pages 1-10 results increased from 81 to 505 (a 523% increase)
While the total volume of terms appearing on the first page of search results still isn’t overwhelming, this definitely shows a trend of increasing opportunities to get found. Those 72 keyword results on pages 2 and 3 are great low-hanging fruit, ripe for boosting onto the first page!
The momentum was building. And even with just a few keywords ranking on page one (for some pretty high volume search terms), we started seeing some of those leads flowing in.
The best part is that the approach consisted of some simple and affordable local SEO services.
TWO Affordable LOCAL SEO SERVICES THAT GOT US THE RESULTS
We focused on what I considered two “must-have” tactics that I believe every small business should be doing. This helped us keep the budget as low as possible, but still gave us some on-site and off-site pieces that drove the results we were going for.
Every month we would produce two strategically-developed SEO blog posts. We would do one 500-word post ($97) and one 1,000-word post ($173). These helped us develop the keyword breadth on the website itself.
After running a full citation audit, we would add/update ten online business directories (i.e., Yelp, BBB, Thumbtack, etc), ten geotagged photos, and ten social profile links every month ($197).
So for less than $500/mo we were building links and developing a core of content on the website with a focus on high-value, local search terms. We did this consistently, month after month, without fail. And consistency is one of the keys to building momentum with search engine results.
Element #1: Blogging for Local SEO Results
Blogging is one of the best ways to create some keyword authority on your website, but few know how to do it effectively. A few key elements to making this work well are:
Start with keyword research. It’s important to look for current trends in the user’s search behavior. And you’ll want to focus on terms that provide a good combination of higher search volume and lower competitive density.
Build on competitive content research. Once you have your target keyword, then you’ll want to evaluate other similar content out there to see what’s getting others ranking for similar terms.
Write for the users, not for search engines. Crafting good, useful content is what search engines want. Think about building a great resource that helps people, and it’ll pay off with the search engines too.
In this example (above), we targeted “selling waterfront property” to attract the kinds of potential sellers the agent wanted to get listings from.
As you build a library of useful content like this on your website, you’ll be creating more entry points for visitors to come through.
Element #2: Local Citation Link-Building
Links are what drives the Internet. And a good link-portfolio for any website will feature a variety of types of links from several different places.
Generally, things like guest-post links and contextual links can help you build a strong based of keyword-focused links. And that’s a great thing! But when the budget is limited, then you’ll need to focus on the stuff that drives the biggest geographic impact possible.
That’s where local citation link building comes in. With this strategy, there are three things we focus on to build the local push we want:
Local and business directories. The biggest of these you’ve likely heard of is Yelp. And there are thousands of others that exist and can have listings for your business. The trick here isn’t thinking about the traffic that they may (or may not) drive. But the location-based links back to your website from (generally) high-authority websites is a big deal.
Geo-tagged photo posting. Adding images with geo-location factors on image websites is another tactic that creates location-based links, signaling areas you want to show up in for searches.
Social profile posts. This is a little bit different than just your standard Facebook or Twitter posting. But there are similar sites where profiles and links can be created to provide an additional layer of references.
The result is a regularly growing and diverse set of links with a geo-focus. It’s not as strong with the keyword factors, but it’s great for the location factors.
Do this, along with a strong Google My Business profile, and you’ll be setting up all of the right signals for search engines to know where you’re at.
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Implementing Affordable Local SEO Services
Your local business doesn’t need to suffer in obscurity! Getting found in a local search isn’t that difficult if you’re doing the right things. But consistency is the key. Results won’t happen overnight with just one or two months of trying these strategies.
And depending on how competitive your niche is, you might be able to get away with a smaller budget (for less competitive niches than Florida real estate agents). You could also see better results faster. Regardless, the bottom line is that we’ve seen this strategy work over and over with lots of clients.
The key is to stick with it, follow the data, and keep building based on what the data is telling you.
With a strategy like this, you’ll build strong rankings that will drive substantial traffic to your website. And that traffic is likely to be more highly qualified and motivated to connect with you.
If you have any questions about how a plan like this might work for you, or just need a little coaching along the way to make sure you’re doing it right, then grab some time for a quick chat. We’re always happy to help!
If so, you’ve got a lot of competition. Currently, there are over 30 million small businesses, some of which are in direct competition with you. And 57% of marketers say they’ve gained new customers through their company’s blog.
If you’re just starting out with content marketing (our fancy term for business blogging), you may see a long road ahead of you. You may even ask yourself if you, or your team, actually have the time to invest in creating fantastic posts that make people want to read what you have to say.
Or what if you have the time to create amazing blog posts, but you don’t have any readers to read it? The age-old question of “if a tree falls in the woods and there’s no one to hear it, does it make a sound” applies to your blog. That is, if you write professional copy with amazing photos and great information, but there’s no one to read it, does the blog exist at all?
This is where content syndication comes in. It can help you build your blog from the ground up, chock-full of information people are looking for, without spending your valuable time creating it. And if you’re creating content, then this will get your work in front of more people, quickly.
What Is Syndication?
If you grew up during the era before streaming services almost completely replaced television, you may be familiar with the term syndication. This is where television shows sell their rights to a variety of channels to allow their show to play in syndication. Often times, shows that played in syndication were those that had been off the air for a decade or longer.
However, talk shows are often still played in syndication as they are sold to several local channels to play during the day.
Newspapers also use this tactic to help get their content read. For example, your local newspaper may have a column from someone who works across the country. That’s because that person’s column is run in syndication across a variety of newspapers.
In essence, syndicated content is very similar in that your blog content will run across several websites.
How Does Content Syndication Work?
Content syndication works similarly to newspaper and television syndication. It works in two ways. First, you can publish articles that other people have written, stating that the content was first published on another site.
Most people, however, use content syndication the other way in order to get more clicks to their site. If you’re a blog for your business, you’ll want to syndicate your content with a variety of larger websites. The links back to your site not only create opportunities for clicks, but the links alone carry a great deal of search engine optimization value for you.
You’ve probably read an article on a website and scrolled to the bottom and seen something along the lines of “This article was originally published by” and then the name of the magazine or blog. The media companies, or the individuals, have entered into a deal to allow their content to run in syndication.
This allows a maximum viewership, which is a mutually beneficial relationship if done correctly.
How Does Content Syndication Help a Small Business Blog?
Content syndication works extremely well for a small business. You can choose to syndicate content with smaller websites and businesses, but it won’t earn you much traffic.
Instead, if you syndicate content with a larger website, preferably one that pulls in hundreds of thousands of views per month, you’ll get more eyes on your blog or business.
You can’t be positive that people will go to your site, but you will have a byline on a larger site, and if you’re advertising your product or service, it immediately gets advertised to a larger audience.
But in order for content syndication to work, you need to do it well. It isn’t enough to syndicate with a website or blog that has a larger audience. Ideally, you’ll need to syndicate with one that is in your niche.
For example, if you’re a business that is centered around teenage and young adult clothing and trends, it wouldn’t serve you well to syndicate with a site targeted to adults age 35-55. While you may get lots of eyeballs on your content, they’re not the right eyeballs.
The right eyeballs would, of course, be a high traffic site for young adults and teens.
How Do I Start Syndicating My Content or Accepting Syndicated Content?
If you’re keen to accept syndicated content, you may wish to let others know your site accepts guest posts or syndication.
But getting your posts to syndicate with high traffic sites can be the most challenging part (unless you know someone who rocks it). Most people do this by writing fabulous copy and then pitching it to the magazine or website.
This can be a difficult and tedious task, and you may hear scores of no’s before you finally get one yes. However, hitting the proverbial pavement is one way to score a deal.
What If I Don’t Have Time to Pitch My Content?
If you’re just starting a business, you may be working two jobs at once or working around the clock to stay afloat. Sitting down and pitching your content to sites across the Internet may seem overwhelming and even frustrating. That’s totally fair.
And that’s where Fistbump Media comes in. In addition to the SEO services we already offer to help your site rank high in searches, you can try our team of amazing content writers for your company’s blog, and we have existing relationships for syndicating your content to a bunch of high-authority websites.
You own a small business and you have a million things on your plate. Read on to learn everything you need to know about SEO in our ultimate SEO kickstart guide.
When Scott Paxton entered a competition to see who could get their new website to the front of Google the fastest, he decided to look at what his competitors were doing.
What he learned can help you take charge of where your business ranks in the top search engine result pages (SERPs).
You want to rank first for your industry on Google…but you don’t have the time or money to spend hours trying out different strategies…how do you get great SERP results without blowing your whole budget?
This guide will walk you through how to use SEO for small business. Stop wondering why you aren’t ranking as high as you want and get a free site audit now!
Is SEO for Small Business Worth It?
You love your business and nothing excites you more than waking up to help it grow every day.
But your website and all its subdomains aren’t popping up on the first page of Google.
As much as you’ve heard about how small business SEO can help bring in new customers, you just don’t want to bother trudging through educational resources on the subject.
One easy place to start is with a SEO score. You’ll get an easy to read SEO report sent right to your inbox.
This is a great place to start if SEO seems like a daunting subject. It will show you everything you could be doing to rank higher for your keywords.
How will it be displayed? Which social media outlets, websites, etc.
Who will you need to hire to produce the content?
Who will make decisions about which content is produced?
Often times marketers fall short of completing the real goal behind SEO. To get more sales. Just ranking higher for certain keywords will undoubtedly bring more traffic to your site, but if you’re attracting the wrong visitors your efforts are in vain.
Research shows that 53% of people will leave a site if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. That’s bad news given that the average loading time of a mobile page hovers around 22 seconds.
Complicated graphics or videos can cause your site to lag too much, ultimately losing your potential leads.
→ Broken Links
Make sure every link on your site is functional. Broken links hurt your online reputation and make your whole site look unprofessional.
→ Canonical Link Elements
Canonical link elements tell search engines which page of duplicate content should be shown. You probably have several duplicates of content pages from your own site and don’t even know it.
That’s because duplication can happen due to something as small as opening a new user session. Often times a single instance URL is issued when each visitor comes to your page.
Forgetting to use canonical link elements can result in the wrong page being pushed up the SERPs.
“Would I Do This If Search Engines Didn’t Exist?”
Is the exact question Google says to ask yourself before modifying your site. It’s tempting to cater to search engines because they bring in so many of your customers.
But it’s important to keep in mind that you share the same goal as Google, to better serve your customers.
So look at Google as more of a partner than a landlord. One way to prove to Google your site is trustworthy while still providing tremendous value to the end user is through backlinks.
Backlinks are when other websites link back to your content.
How to Get Backlinks
Before we talk about how to get backlinks, let’s talk about how not to get them.
This is just as vital because black hat tactics like link schemes can result in penalties that will make your site harder to find than Timbuktu with a blindfold on.
Original content reigns supreme within Google and other search engines. Unique opinions and commentary on content from other sources is still considered original.
But content scraped from other sites with nothing of value added to the user experience will earn you a penalty fast.
A great way to get other sites to take notice of your content (and link to it) is to create a resource center.
→ Resource Center
A resource center, like this one, is the perfect way to build backlinks. No one likes being sold to. It’s why we fast forward or skip commercials whenever we can.
But a source for high quality, fresh content that answers your readers’ questions will have them begging for more.
And yes, your resource center should be totally, 100% free. Think of your resource center as a first date with a potential customer.
You want them to see the expertise and skills you have to offer. You don’t try and sell to every visitor right away the same way you wouldn’t propose to every stranger walking into Starbucks after you.
The less sales-oriented your resource page is, the better. This isn’t a buyer’s guide. Don’t try and upsell or link to products. Provide only the information readers are looking for.
It might seem counterintuitive not to focus on sales here, but remember we have a reputation to uphold with Google.
The more time reader’s spend on our pages the higher they’ll rank. A resource page builds your credibility as an expert in your industry.
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How Social Media and Content Marketing Work Together
Social media is a double-edged sword when it comes to content marketing.
It democratizes content creation but it can also be more demanding than your typical marketing strategy.
That’s because not only do you speak to your users on social media, but they speak to you.
→ User-Generated Content
Taking advantage of user-generated content like customers using your branded hashtags is an important part of making your social media campaign a success.
Responding to comments and DMs also go along way in ranking your social media pages higher in SERPs.
→ Keep It Share Worthy
Social media is all about sharing. Sharing something that makes you laugh, cry, or angry is what makes social media so addicting.
It’s not like traditional media that talks at you. It’s your best friend sending you something that made them crack up.
It’s your mom sending you something that made her go, “awww!”
Always ask yourself, “would I share this on my personal profile,” before posting something on your business profiles.
Marketers used to go on nothing more than trial and error. Not anymore. We have more data than ever to base our marketing decisions on.
A website audit report is a good place to start. You’ll get a look at what’s working (and what’s not) with keywords your visitors might be using to find you. You can focus on those subjects and remove irrelevant content that may be holding you back.
Facebook’s targeting metrics are arguably the most advanced of any tech company. You can find everything from keywords your customers are searching for to what their favorite band is.
A pet supply store might target the keyword “black cat” on Halloween, which would probably create a short term surge in traffic.
But most people searching for the term “black cat” are not going to be interested in pet food.
Know who your customer is before trying to connect with them.
One of the best ways to do keyword research is with an in-depth keyword analysis. These are great because you get an instant critique of your keyword usage.
If you’re not ranking well, don’t worry! That’s the whole point of the audit. Improving your SEO strategy starts with fixing what’s broken.
If your site is lacking in keywords there is a lot of help. Content creation and backlinks are what will get you to the top of the SERPs. You can outsource a lot of this time-consuming work to a service like this.
You Can Start to See Results in Less Time Than You Think
So what did Scott Paxton learn while racing to rank his website?
Every top search result led to a subdomain of their homepage. Your homepage should act as a directory that hosts all your valuable unique content.
That’s because we want to provide value above all else. Backlinks and keywords create the language we use to communicate with Google.
No one wants to do business with a faceless corporation. SEO and content marketing set you up to be an industry leader by humanizing your business.
To start ranking higher and attracting more customers, get a free site audit and start optimizing your page immediately! If you still need help with your SEO strategy we can help with everything from designing your website to creating a solid network of backlinks.
Stop ignoring your SEO strategy while your competitors thrive. Read this article now about what happens behind the scenes of a site audit.