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Internet Marketing Questions and Answers: Search Engine Optimisation FAQ

Simple answers to Internet Marketing questions & SEO FAQ

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Internet Marketing SEO FAQ Hitchin Hertfordshire

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If you have any Internet Marketing questions that are not covered here or need to know more about SEO, please Contact Us for an answer!

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What are search engines and why are they important to your business?

Search engines are online software tools that search for (and index) textual information on the internet (or world wide web) so that when a user submits a search term, the search engine results pages (SERPs) show snippets of web pages deemed most relevant to the term entered. Results can consist of web pages, videos, images and data taken from other online directories or databases. Search engines determine which information is shown using algorithms and human input to decide relevancy. The key word is “relevancy”. If you want your business website to become a 24/7 lead generating machine, that attracts potential customers who are searching for your products and services online, you’ll need your website pages to rank highly for search terms that relate to what you offer. To do this, you’ll need a website that is search engine optimised using both on-page and off-page strategies and techniques. Find out more about our Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Services - our strategies and techniques are recommended and rubber-stamped by all major search engines and we’ll help your business dominate your online market-place.

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What are search engine spiders and why does my website need to be ‘crawled’?

Spiders are intelligent software programmes that search engines use to visit, crawl and index millions of web pages throughout the World Wide Web. Web pages are then stored within large search engine “data centres”, ready to be presented within search engine results pages when humans enter a search term that relates to the pages. To be fully crawled and indexed by search engines, web pages must be developed using clean validated coding – not fancy Flash or juicy Javascript! If you’d like to find out how search engine friendly your website really is, our SEO Evaluation Reports & Analysis service will put you completely in the picture.

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What is "Search Engine Optimisation" or "SEO"?

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of optimising a website for it to be ranked highly in ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ search engine results pages for keyword phrases that relate to the type of products and services you offer. Let’s be brutally honest - when you search for information online using search engines, do you normally search beyond the 1st page of results? Ranking highly on the 1st page is where you need your business website to be positioned. You’ll get a higher share of click-throughs to your website and if your website engages visitors (using web usability strategies and techniques) you stand a far higher chance of converting them into action takers too! Our SEO Services include keyword analysis, site structure and navigation suggestions, optimised copywriting, SEO implementation and SEO link building.

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What is Search Engine Marketing or SEM?

Search Engine Marketing (or SEM) is a collective industry term for all strategies and techniques related to promoting and marketing websites on search engines and includes ‘natural’ methods such as search engine optimisation as well as ‘paid” methods such as Google Adwords Pay-Per-Click.

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What are keyword terms and why are they so important?

Keywords (or key phrases) are terms that people enter into search engines to search for information, products or services online. Search engines then show the most relevant web pages (from their index) in search engine results pages. Search engines use algorithms (that include over 250 ranking metrics) to determine which web pages are shown at the top of their results pages. One of the most important metrics used is relevancy to the search term entered – otherwise known as keywords. Comprehensive Keyword Research & Analysis is critical to understanding which keywords should be optimised for within the content of web pages. Using the most searched-for, relevant keywords (that relate to your products and services) will then enable your business website to be found in search engines.

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Why is website navigation and usability important to my website?

When website visitors land on your pages, you have up to 8 seconds to convince them to stay and take action. Fail the 8 second test and you can kiss them goodbye! How long do you remain on websites that are boring, un-engaging and hard to navigate or use? Regardless of how highly your website is ranked in search engines, your website must engage them, speak their language and convert them from visitors to action takers. If you think your website is in need of a usability makeover, a navigational audit or a conversion strategy tune-up, try our Website Usability Testing & Audit service.

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What is SEO link building?

Search engine optimisation includes two key areas: on-page and off-page. Our SEO Link Building Services focus on getting quality in-bound links from good quality websites. Search engines place great importance on the quality and quantity of links pointing to a website. For businesses wishing to rank highly in search engines, strategic link building is a “must have” activity. However, unlike many other SEO companies who focus on targeting irrelevant, low value links or link farms, we target strong, authoritative links. A smart, effective way to entice webmasters to build links to your website is by publishing unique, fresh and useful content – commonly known as link-bait.

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What is Google Places (formerly Google Maps) Local Search? Can it help my business?

Google Places Local Search is an effective, inexpensive way to advertise your products and services to potential customers online who are looking for what you offer in your local town or county. Although Google Places has become a key ingredient in achieving local search engine domination, many businesses have yet to claim their free listing. For those that have, many have not optimised their entry to appear at the top of local search listings. We have helped many clients increase their sales locally by optimising their Google Places accounts: enter "Loft Conversion in Coventry" into Google and one of our clients, Use Your Loft, are ranked at the top. Or enter "Small Business Accounting in Devon” and you’ll find M & G Associates also appearing at the top. Our Google Places – UK Local Search service will help your business win more local customers and increase traffic from local customers to your website.

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What is the difference between white-hat and black-hat search engine optimisation techniques?

The answer is simple – white-hat (or ethical) search engine optimisation uses techniques and methods recommended by all the major search engines to gain high rankings and online visibility. Black-hat practices are condemned by all major search engines and the use of them can result in websites being heavily penalised (resulting in low rankings), or complete deletion from the search engine indexes. Gain valuable insight into why you should choose Dimmock Web Marketing as your Full Internet Marketing Partner.

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I’ve heard of keyword stuffing and keyword spamming - what exactly are these?

Keyword stuffing or spamming are the same thing – a technique used in the 1980s and 1990s to manipulate and trick search engines into ranking websites highly. Today, to protect user experience, search engines have become far more intelligent and now heavily penalise websites that attempt these black-hat methods – in some cases dropping websites from their index altogether. The proper use of keywords (as part of an SEO strategy) can transform your business website into a lead-generating, marketing machine, attracting online visitors who are looking for what you offer. Find out more about our Keyword Research Service.

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What are ‘landing pages’ and ‘calls to action’ – I’m confused?

Landing pages are single-purpose web pages designed to entice visitors to take immediate action by downloading, requesting, subscribing or purchasing something. The term ‘call to action’ refers to a method used to entices website visitors to perform specific actions: subscribing to your online newsletter, contacting you, submitting an enquiry form, requesting a quote or downloading useful information (such as white papers etc). Landing page optimisation and ‘call to action’ implementation are crucial to getting visitors to take action on your website. If you website is not converting visitors to leads or sales, our Website Usability Testing & Audit service could be the best investment you make.

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We’re new to Pay Per Click advertising – can it really help our business?

Pay Per Click advertising lets small business owners promote their products, goods and services through text adverts within search engine sponsored listings –found at the top and right of organic (or natural) search engine results listings. Advertisers set a daily limit on what they are prepared to spend and are then charged every time their advert is clicked. The actual cost per click is determined by the position of their advert, the cost of the keyword that triggered their advert to appear and the search engine’s quality score of their click-through-ratio (CTR). In business terms, this is the fastest, most cost-effective way for your company to attract new customers online. If you’re a little confused, why not get in touch - our Google Adwords Services are competitively priced for the small to medium business sector and focus on achieving a high return of investment. We also offer Pay Per Click health-checks and training.

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What is social media and how can it help my business?

Social media has taken the world by storm over the last 5 years. Everyone has a Facebook account and many businesses have a Twitter or Linked-In account. Promoting your business online through social media marketing should be seen as a vital part of your online marketing mix. From an SEO perspective, Twitter and Facebook Pages regularly show up on search engine results pages while Linked-In is the largest business networking platform online. If you’re looking to take your first steps on promoting your business through social media or if you need help optimising your existing accounts, our social media training services could be what you're lookng for.

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Business Questions

My website isn’t generating leads or enquiries – what should I do?

There could be a number of reasons why your website isn’t generating enquiries, leads or sales: lack of keyword optimisation, low search engine ranking, website technical problems, lack of indexable content for search engines to crawl, non-friendly website navigation or structure, lack of conversion strategy – the list is virtually endless. Our SEO Evaluation Reports & Analysis and Website Usability Testing & Audit services will provide you with a complete health-check of your website performance and bring to your attention potential problems that could be holding it back. Also, these services will provide suggestions on how to rectify problems using proven internet marketing, search engine optimisation and website usability techniques.

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My website hasn’t been updated recently with new content – will this affect my rankings?

All the major search engines suggest regularly adding new and fresh website content. From an SEO perspective, indexed fresh content can boost your rankings, especially when internal linking is included. From a user perspective, fresh, interesting content shows your website is growing and evolving and therefore builds confidence, trust and credibility. Finding the time to write creative, optimised, useful content can be a challenge for many businesses, especially writing just the right copy that perfectly fits their target audience profile. Our SEO Copywriting Service addresses this challenge, while letting you build your business.

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Why isn’t my website ranked at the top of search engines for what our business offers?

Highly ranked websites have certain things in common – they have unique, interesting content, their website content has been optimised for search engines using popular keywords and they have good-quality inbound links from relevant, trusted and respected websites. Our Search Engine Ranking Service address all these internet marketing methods.

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We don’t have a business website yet – how do we go about designing one that gets results from the start?

Unfortunately, one of the major myths of website design is that once a new business website goes live, online visitors will find it and enquiries will pour in – unfortunately this doesn’t happen. To get fast results, Small Business Website Design & Development should follow a website marketing strategy that focuses on search engine optimisation, great website usability and conversion principles from the start. This means getting the fundamentals right before designing it.

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Why are my online competitors out-ranking us in search engines?

Would you like to know how your online competitors achieve their search engine rankings and what internet marketing, search engine optimisation or SEO link building tactics they’re using? The competition for top rankings is fierce. Our “online competition” SEO Evaluation Reports & Analysis service will provide the knowledge and market intelligence needed to compete against them and rank higher.

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I want to improve my company’s online brand and market exposure – what are my first steps?

Contact Us for a friendly chat about what you’re after or book an appointment to discuss the steps you need to take to implement a Website Marketing Strategy. We also provide SEO Training Services, should you wish to learn how to optimise your own website.

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Our website needs a navigational / usability makeover to increase visitor conversion – how should we go about this?

We offer a number of services aimed at increasing the conversion of website visitors into leads or sales. Our SEO copywriting service focuses on creating fresh, keyword-optimised website content that tempts, engages and entices visitors to take action. Our Website Usability Testing & Audit service offers best-practice and industry-related suggestions to improve your website usability, increase your conversion ratio and increase positive visitor behaviour.

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We get a high quantity of website visitors but only a few conversions – what are we going wrong?

What sets us apart from most internet marketing companies is that we not only focus on getting high search engine rankings for websites, we also focus on improving your website visitor experience and conversion ratio. Being top of Google search results is great, but if visitors aren’t converting, you’re leaving money on the table! Our website usability testing and Website Visitor Reporting & Analytics services will identify and monitor visitor behaviour and gain insight into problem areas or road-blocks that should be addressed to improve overall website usability.

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We’re running a Google Adwords Pay-Per-Click campaign but not converting clicks into leads or sales – what are we doing wrong?

Low conversion rates could be the result of many different factors: wrong keyword targeting, no calls to action, low quality score or incorrect bidding strategies, to name a few. With ROI-focused campaign management, pay-per-click advertising can be the fastest way to attract potential customers to your website. Our Google Adwords Services include new campaign setup, existing campaign optimisation and pay per click training.

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We want to know how our website visitors behave – how do we find this out?

Tracking, understanding and monitoring website visitor behaviour is fundamental to the success of your website promotion activities. Implementing Website Visitor Reporting & Analytics will help you understand how new and existing visitors behave when they arrive from organic search engine rankings or paid advertising campaigns. Analysing visitor behaviour and making necessary website changes will increase your conversion rates and provide a better experience for your potential customers.

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Should our web design company also be experts in internet marketing?

Not necessarily – and this is one of the great myths of the web design world. Designing business websites and marketing them effectively require two specific skills sets: design and marketing. Website design focuses on coding, programming, software development and aesthetics. Marketing websites focuses on promotion, link building, on-page / off-page search engine optimisation, advertising and overall user experience. To succeed online, professional Business Website Design needs both. As your Full Internet Marketing Partner, we’ll help make your website a success and guide you every step of the way.

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Should we submit our website to thousands of search engines and directories regularly to promote our business online?

In a word – NO! The practice of automating search engine submission is known as spamming and can earn penalties from search engines and online directories alike. Internet marketing success is based on quality not quantity. Our SEO link building and Search Engine Placement & Positioning Service includes targeting relevant, industry-based directories, achieving high rankings in search engines and attracting website visitors looking for your products and services.

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I’m a tradesman - how should I start marketing my services on the internet?

There are many ways that the internet can be used to promote and advertise your small business online – some are more expensive than others. Our inexpensive Google Maps – UK Local Search service will promote your business to potential local customers within your geographic area who are looking for the products and services you offer. If you need a website designed by professionals, our Small Business Website Design and Search Engine Optimisation Services will help you create an effective, visible online identity. If you already have a website that needs updating, fine-tuning or optimising for search engines, give us a call – we’re here to help.

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Should my goal be to get ranked highly in search engines?

Ranking highly in search engines (if your business depends on attracting new customers) should be your priority and form part of your Website Marketing Strategy. To rank highly, your website must be optimised and search engine friendly and be able to attract quality, in-bound links from relevant, trusted websites and directories.

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Our business has outgrown our website and needs re-designing – what’s our first step?

If you’re looking to re-design your website, the most important questions to ask yourself are “why”, “what” and “when”. Answering these will help you form an overall strategy and project timescale with realistic stepping stones and deadlines. We have vast experience of helping clients redesign their websites. We will advise of the common pitfalls to avoid and follow a structured process that includes discovery, wire-framing, customer profiling and online market research (via keyword analysis). If your new website needs to generate leads and attract new customers, choosing us your Full Internet Marketing Partner will ensure your Small Business Website Design project is a success.

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Client Testimonials

"I've enjoyed working with Dimmock Web Marketing. They have a very deep understanding of how search engines work. Using this knowledge, they have constructed a digital presense that's robust and very efficient"

Director,

Perfect Ground Solutions

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Did you know?

Top 10 websites receive 78% more traffic than those in positions 11 to 30 (Forrester Research 2014)