Welcome to our first edition of SearchRank eNews. I am very excited about the opportunity to provide you with continuous advice and resources related to the search engine optimization and marketing world as well as to keep you informed of the latest breaking news in the industry as a whole.
This first edition will largely be sent to our existing clients but as time rolls on, I believe many others will sign up to receive this monthly newsletter. In fact, since we added the sign up function to our web site a few days ago, two new subscribers signed up! I know that is not “huge” numbers but hey, everyone has to start somewhere.
In this issue…
- INTRODUCING MYSELF
- FEATURE ARTICLE – WHY SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING?
- WE NOW OFFER LINK POPULARITY BUILDING SERVICES
- SEARCH ENGINE HEADLINES
- CLOSING COMMENTS
Before we get to the guts of the newsletter, I wanted to tell you a little about myself and our company. My wife Irma and I founded Higher Dimensions in April of 1997 as a web site design firm of which we not only developed sites but submitted them to the various search engines as well. It was out of this experience as well as promoting our Arizona construction portal site – the Arizona Builders’ Zone that we decided to launch a separately branded site that would strictly focus on the search engine marketing aspect of our business. I secured searchrank.com and our development team went to work designing the site. It launched in January 2000 and from there, we have been able to provide services to companies all over the globe.
Today I continue to serve as president and CEO of the company with a current staff of 7 people. My primary focus is on search engine marketing and as such I am very much involved in the strategy for each campaign we maintain. When I can find time, I write articles related to the industry which have been published on many prominent sites related to the search engine industry. I am also a moderator on a the very popular search engine marketing forum – High Rankings Forum, where I provide advice and share experiences related to the SEM industry as well as interact with other top SEO/SEM professionals from around the world. Well, enough introduction for now. On to the important stuff!
FEATURE ARTICLE – WHY SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING?
What Is This Search Engine Marketing Anyway?
Unless you have been living in a cave for the last few years (no offense if you have), you have no doubt heard of names like ‘Google,’ ‘Yahoo’, ‘MSN’ and ‘AOL.’ These are just a few of the many search engines that allow people to quickly locate information on the Internet. In fact, probably all of us use one search engine or another every day to find information or locate products. I know I do. They have become a part of everyday life for millions of people all over the world.
Therefore if you have a web site or are involved in the marketing efforts of a site, you have to ask yourself the question, “If people are trying to find information related to my business, will they be able to find me?” There are currently billions of web pages and files on the Internet. In order for your site to stand out in the midst of all these documents, it is going to take a strategic marketing effort. That is where search engine marketing comes into play. A well planned and deployed search engine marketing effort will position your site in front of the eyeballs of those who are looking for your services. It is the very foundation of any Internet marketing strategy and an absolute necessity if one is going to experience success on the Internet.
Search Engines Bring Leads To You
Unlike a lot of conventional advertising mediums such as print, radio and television to name a few, search engines deliver targeted leads to your web site. Conventional means of marketing “go after” or “seek out” a prospective client. In the case of search engines, individuals are actually going after and seeking out specific products and services. Therefore the goal is to make sure your site is visible to a search engine user. Once you gain that visibility in relation to keywords and phrases relevant to your business, you are then in the position to receive quality and targeted leads. These leads will bring about an improvement in sales which will then result in increased profits.
A landscaper that we provide search engine marketing services for was primarily using the Yellow Pages and mail outs to attract new business. They would maybe get 2-5% of their business directly through their web site. After they employed a SEM campaign, within a year those numbers had shifted. They are now getting about 80% of their new business through people finding their site. This has enabled them to cut back the Yellow Page advertising, mail outs and the like and in the process, save thousands and thousands of dollars. Their business has increased and all with less advertising dollars. This is just one of many success stories I could tell.
Two Aspects of Search Engine Marketing
Now there is essentially two aspects to search engine marketing (SEM). First there is what is called natural or organic search engine optimization, which involves “optimizing” certain elements of a web site or page in order to increasing one’s visibility and exposure in the “natural” or “unpaid” results of search engines and directories. The other aspect of SEM is the “paid” search engine marketing element. This involves a variety of “pay per click” and “pay for inclusion” services that search engines and directories offer. These results usually appear above or to the side of the natural results when a search query is conducted. With some engines, they are mixed in. In my opinion, one should try to gain good positioning in the natural results first and then if they have the budget, they can also employ a paid results type of a campaign.
The bottom line is that the Internet is here to stay. Search engines are here to stay. People using search engines to locate information has become an essential part if life. Therefore if people who are looking for products or services that you offer cannot find you, they will find your competitors instead! That is why it is crucial for everyone that has a web site or is involved in the marketing efforts of one to ensure they have a strategic search engine marketing plan in place, whether that involves SEO efforts, pay for inclusion, pay per click or all of the above. If you are not currently employing search engine marketing efforts, I’d invite you to contact me so we can discuss the benefits a SEM campaign can have for your site and business.
WE NOW OFFER LINK POPULARITY BUILDING SERVICES
I am happy to announce that we have just started to offer Link Building Services which are designed to increase your web site’s link popularity score. Link popularity is a rating system that Google pioneered where they factor in the number and the quality of external sites that hyperlink to your site. It can be compared to endorsements in the political arena. For example, if I was running for Governor of the state of Arizona and was endorsed by Joe Blow, it probably would not mean a lot because ‘who is this Joe Blow’ anyway? However, if I was endorsed by President Bush, well there would be quite a difference in the amount of votes I could attract. Link popularity works in a similar way except it is one web site endorsing another.
To find out more, please visit our Link Popularity Building section.
SEARCH ENGINE HEADLINES
Here are some of the latest headlines related to the search engine industry.
Google Sets $2.7 Billion IPO
As expected, they finally did it! Google is going public. The popular search engine company registered for a $2.7 billion initial public offering with the Securities and Exchange Commission recently.
Spam Rules Require Effective Spam Police
Rules about spam mean nothing without effective enforcement by the rule makers, the search engines. Will they ever publish an offenders list? A look at how this would help and the impact better spam disclosure would have for searchers and marketers alike.
Google’s Gmail: The Cost of Free E-Mail
There are good reasons to be leery of Gmail, which requires you to trust the security of a computer system over which you have no control. If you keep your correspondence on your home computer, you can encrypt your old e-mail or squirrel it away on CD-ROMs that won’t be accessible to a malicious hacker. That won’t work, if everything’s online.
Well that is all for now. Thanks for sticking it out. April was not only an exciting month for the search engine industry but for me as well. I celebrated my 13th wedding anniversary and our company celebrated its 7th birthday as well. Both have gone by so quickly. Me and my better half wanted to go out of town but things were just too busy (both with business and the kids). So we settled for a day of shopping and an evening at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. Not a bad compromise I must say!
Our next issue will come out on the first Tuesday of next month. Until then, have a great month of May!