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Blog items tagged with "reviews"

Quick Tips to Take-on Review Generation for Local SEO

One of the most challenging and perplexing aspects of local SEO is review generation. Whether on Yelp, Google+, Foursquare, or Facebook, there's no question that reviews impact the authority and SEO-potential of your business. Review Generation

However, earning positive reviews (and many of them) is no easy endeavor. In this brief post, we'll share some tips to help you generate reviews and ignite your local SEO strategy.

Evaluate Existing Reviews

Before you try to generate new reviews, take some time evaluate the nature of any existing reviews your business has throughout the web. Most websites and social platforms enable you to respond to reviews. A respectful response is vital to mitigate the negative nature of bad reviews. Additionally, you can leverage feedback from existing reviews to polish-up your operations or generate new marketing ideas.

Develop an In-store Incentive Program

If most of your customers are visiting your store's location, developing a post-purchase incentive program is great way to generate positive reviews. One great idea is invest in special business cards that are designed specifically to direct people to your company's social profiles or directory listings. Encourage them to leave a positive review, and in return, you can offer them something for their kindness.

Leverage Your Lists

If you've been building lists of your customers (e.g. an email list) you leverage these contacts to prompt review generation. Equally as effective as your lists is social media. For instance, if you have a 1,000 Facebook page likes, try sharing a post that directs users to your Google+ Local page asking them to leave a review. You can even get creative and pitch a prize like the best review will receive 50% off their next purchase.

Ask and You Shall Receive (In Most Cases)

One of the most legitimate ways to earn reviews for better SEO is to ask your customers how they feel about the experience they had with your company. Most customers will be honest in their response and will appreciate your respect for their satisfaction.

This approach for review generation is most effective when you ask customers and clients whom you know are happy with your products or services. These people are almost like friends (and maybe their are,) so don't be bashful to ask for their help.

These are just a few simple ideas to help you jump-start your online reputation. Review generation is imperative for local SEO, however many businesses fail to execute on these simple ideas.

Do you have any creative ideas to share? Please let us know in the comments section below!

7 Google Local SEO Tips for Small Businesses

7 Google Local SEO Tips for Small Businesses

One of the best small business marketing sources to obtain lead generating search visibility is through the local organic search results. Local organic search results refer to the Google search listings that appear with reviews and a corresponding Google map.

Local SEO is a key marketing tool for small and medium sized businesses and is also one of the most confusing SEO strategies to implement. The fact that Google's local search algorithm is different from traditional organic search makes it even more challenging for local businesses to understand the techniques that work.

A local business can gain a big upper-leg on its competition by optimizing its web presence for local organic search. When showing local search listings, Google employs a number of factors to render the best and most relevant results possible.

For example, if you do a keyword search for "breweries" (or something that implies local relevancy) without including a search geo-modifier (such as a city like "breweries in San Francisco" or "Portland breweries"), Google will use your IP address or the Gmail account with which you are currently logged in to display results closest to you. Only the breweries that have put effort in building a solid web presence will have a prominent showing in the local organic search results.

Taking a Closer Look at the Local Organic Search Listings

Although each brewery's headline link will take you to the company's actual website, it is worth noting how the Google reviews link will take you to the Brewery's Google+ Local page. So there is more that contributes to the local search engine rankings other than a business's website, one being a business's Google+ Local page. Although creating a well-optimized website is very crucial for achieving better results on search engine pages, a solid Google+ Local page plays an important role.

In addition to a Google+ Local page, there are other elements that need to be considered. Below are seven valuable local SEO tips that will help to make your local business presence more prominent in search.

1. Optimize the website for your keywords respectfully and avoid keyword stuffing. The first thing to do is research on your main keywords extensively so as to come up with key phrase combinations that your customers use when searching for local businesses. After deciding on these, optimize your website's page titles and meta descriptions respectfully so as to meet local search terms. Avoid over stuffing these keywords and also try to include a geo-modifier (your city name) to each of these keywords.

2. Get your business's address verified on its Google+ page. Verifying your company address on your company's Google+ page will also make it easier for Google to identify your location whenever someone searches for your keywords and rank you appropriately. Verification of your address is as simple as submitting it through your Google+ page, after which Google will mail you a postcard with a PIN verification code.

3. Link your website to your Google+ Local page. Including a "Follow us on Google+" link on your website will also go a long way in increasing your presence on Google's search engine results page. This link code is normally found on your Company's Google+ profile (when in edit mode). The link tag also contains the very essential "rel-publisher" snippet.

4. Populate your Google+ Local page with accurate and sufficient info about your company. Include relevant info about your company, what it deals in, and a few other things that customers may need to know about your company. Where appropriate, deploy your main keywords and geo-modifier.

5. Earn or ask for reviews from some of your customers. In some cases, pages that have more customer reviews (whether good or bad) will typically have more authority and rank highly on local search engine results listings. Put in place some creative and innovative ways of getting your customers to review some of your products.

6. Include the address of your business on all pages of your website. Be sure to include your company's address in the footer of every page of the website, and make sure that there is no difference between this address and that on your Google+ Local page. Make sure that your address is accurate to avoid any legitimacy issues that may arise.

7. Get your company listed on relevant directory sites. Create your company's listings and profiles on other directory sites such as Yellowpages, Manta, Yelp, Yahoo Local and LinkedIn just to mention a few. To ensure your company is legitimate, Google will search and match your company's address on its website, Google+ Local page, and on other directory sites. This signifies that you're a real business, and the more listings you have the more authority you can earn in Google local search.

As you may notice, a solid and well optimized website is not all it will take for your company to attain high ranks on Google. By carefully addressing each of these Google local SEO tasks, your business will be better placed to appear higher in Google's rankings.

Twitter Tips for Local Business Marketing

Twitter is one of the most popular social networking sites with over 500 million users. In short, Twitter is a microblogging platform where users can share text-based messages (also know as "Tweets") which are limited to 140 characters.

Christened the SMS of the Internet, Twitter is one of the top ten most visited sites on the net. In 2011, Google Inc. agreed to include Tweets and Twitter results in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). In the agreement, Google said it would provide real-time data in its SERPs. These features are not only great for personal users, but also local business marketing (SEO).

Take the example of a new seafood restaurant in Peoria, Illinois. Building a Twitter presence can offer a number of marketing benefits. By establishing a strong following of Peoria-area foodies, the seafood restaurant can blast Tweets of dinner specials, fresh catches, and other incentives that steer local traffic through the door. Twitter can also be used to promote reviews on other social platforms like Google+ and Yelp.

Lastly, activity associated with the restaurant's Twitter account may appear in search results for keywords like "seafood restaurants in Peoria." This can generate greater brand awareness and new visitors. These are just a few common examples of how Twitter can help with local marketing. Now let’s get to some tips!

Tips for a Powerful Twitter Presence

Keep in mind that every local business is unique and that different social media marketing strategies will apply. These are some fundamental tips to help you build a powerful Twitter presence for you business.

  • Start by following local businesses and individuals who are authorities in your niche and region.
  • Always have something valuable or meaningful to Tweet about. Share news, offers, coupons, or other promotions.
  • Use hashtags (#) in front of relevant keywords in your Tweets. This can help your Tweets become found by related searches (e.g. #Peoria_Seafood, #PeoriaRestaurants #Best_Restaurants, etc.)
  • Include a Twitter icon (and perhaps a live Twitter feed) on the homepage of your website. This can attract new followers while keep your site fresh with new content.
  • Use Twitter in conjunction with other social platforms like Facebook and Google+, as well as your blogging efforts.
  • Promote you Twitter presence on off-line marketing materials like frequent diner cards, menus and brochures.

In addition, there are several tools that can make your Tweeting more efficient. Here at our Peoria, Illinois office, we like to use TweetDeck. You can learn more about this tool by visiting www.tweetdeck.com. Start taking advantage of Twitter today. It's both easy to use and highly effective for local business marketing.

 

This article written by Tyler Tafelsky, one of SEO Specialists here at OIC Group, Inc.

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Peoria Web Design Company Offices:
OIC Group, Inc.
Phone: (309) 680-5600

Mailing Address:
PO Box 1111
Peoria, IL 61653