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Does Your Business Use Facebook? Why Not?

Like it or not, Facebook is a phenomenon that’s here to stay. Since May 2005, the number of people on Facebook has doubled, and the population is heavily skewed towards 18 – 34 year olds from higher income households.

When millions upon millions of users register their personal information on a social site, all of a sudden demographic research becomes far easier than it has ever been before. And this is a gold mine to Marketers. It’s far easier to sell to your preferred audience than to a bunch of disinterested people, and by using filters to pick out your targeted segment, you literally get more bang for your buck

The Facebook Advantage:

  1. Reach the right people for the right reasons: People treat Facebook as an authentic part of their lives, so you can be sure you are connecting with real people with a real interest in your products.
  2. Choose your audience by location, age and interests: Talk only to people who really matter to you.
  3. Test simple image and text-based ads: Collect evidence about the usefulness of your ads, and use only the model that works for you.
  4. Promote your Facebook Page or website and use the “Like” button to increase your ad’s influence.
  5. Build a community around your business: Community works because users feel like you have their interests in mind, rather than just your own. Community is about communication, and that might be the best advertising you could hope for.
  6. Control your daily budget: A small outlay on advertising can yield a vast dividend in terms of business, and you can specify a daily ad-spend.
  7. Run cost-effective ad campaigns: Choose to pay only when people click or see your ad.

Combining Marketing Solutions on Facebook for a Positive ROI:

It’s hard to beat the low cost of participation and uniquely engaged audience on Facebook. However, when you create a broader presence with Facebook Pages or Facebook Events plus ads for instance, you can turn your advertising message into a trusted referral by including content from a user’s friends who are already affiliated with your products.

Usually, online friends are people whom you know in real life – people you study with, work with, or who live near you. In other words, people whom you respect – and recommendations from them will carry some weight. This element may be the game changer for companies like yours who are trying to sell their products, and it is this combination of approaches that will truly increase your ROI.

Happy Facebooking!

Why Do Search Engines Matter to Every Business?

I’m sure you know that Search Engines are sites like Google, AOL, MSN or Yahoo where searches for information on any topic are conducted by typing keywords or key phrases into the search box and then reviewing the results.

Since Search Engines are the primary interface between people using the Web and websites, anyone finding your web site through a search engine is a potential customer – because they have decided before finding your website that they need what you’re selling and are looking for you specifically.

Why Does Ranking Matter?

Research shows that very few searchers move beyond the first page or two of a search engine’s ‘organic’ or unpaid listings. They strongly believe that the search engine has ranked the results in order of importance and going beyond the first page of listings drastically reduces their chances of finding anything relevant. Therefore, having a top 30 listing is crucial to your business.

How Do I Improve My Ranking?

Search Engine Optimization or Positioning is by far the best, smartest and most affordable investment you can make. SEO is the process of improving a website for higher search engine rankings, and is a necessary component of online marketing strategy.

How are Web Pages Ranked?

Search engines compile their databases using “spiders” or “robots” (‘bots’) to crawl through the Internet from link to link, identifying and perusing pages. After spiders find pages, they pass them on to another computer program for “indexing.” This program identifies the text, links, and other content in the page and stores it in the search engine database’s files so that the database can be searched by keyword and whatever more advanced approaches are offered, and the page will be found if your search matches its content.

Are There Rules?

When indexing they follow a set of rules, known as an algorithm. Exactly how a particular search engine’s algorithm works is a closely-kept trade secret. However, all major search engines follow some general rules:
  1. One of the main rules in a ranking algorithm involves the location of keywords on a web page. Pages with the search terms appearing in the HTML title tag are often assumed to be more relevant than others to the topic.
  2. Frequency is the other major factor in how search engines determine relevancy. A search engine will analyse how often keywords appear in relation to other words in a web page. Those with a higher frequency are often deemed more relevant than other web pages.
  3. Link analysis is another major factor. By analyzing how pages link to each other, a search engine can both determine what a page is about and whether that page is deemed to be “important” and thus deserving of a ranking boost.

Can I Do It Without SEO?

There is a pervasive myth among website operators that simply submitting the URL to every search engine or just inserting Meta tags into your Web pages will increase traffic to the website and thus, increase sales. Both are just not true! Meta tags and search engine submission are highly recommended – however, by themselves, these steps will not get you anywhere. Smart Search Engine-friendly copy is the foundation you need to climb up the rankings.

Can I Fool a Search Engine?

Not likely. Search engines may penalize pages or exclude them from the index if they detect search engine “spamming.” An example is when a word is repeated too many times on a page – to increase the keyword frequency for higher ranking.

Search engines have plenty of experience with webmasters who try many things on their web pages in an attempt to gain better rankings. Because of this, all major search engines now also make use of “off the page” ranking criteria. These are the factors that a webmaster cannot easily influence.

The Takeaway:

Establish and maintain your Search Engine rank position right away by applying legitimate optimization methodologies that work!