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How Does Google Factor in SEO?

What Is Search Engine Optimization?

Search engine optimization typically, referred to by its acronym SEO is a process of improving the ranking of a web page on search engine results pages (SERPs), thereby improving the quality and quantity of traffic to that particular web page organically. This statement has three aspects that you need to have in mind. If you are looking for more information on the basics of Search Engine Optimization, be sure to check out www.metalinkd.com for more details on how digital marketing and SEO can be implemented into your marketing strategy. You can trust your faith into MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing, the top Digital Marketing Agency in Rockville, MD and a up and coming Maryland SEO Company

The Underlying Goals Of SEO

The first underlying goal of SEO revolves around improving the quality of traffic, whereby you attract search engine users who are interested in your content, and, therefore, are interested in the products and services that you have on offer. To attract quality traffic, website owners need to write content that is highly specific for their niche, using the right set of keywords.
The second goal to SEO is attracting more people to your website. Researchers in the SEO industry have posited websites on the first page of Google attract a combined net traffic of around 95%. This is to say that the top 10 links that are displayed on SERPs will garner the vast majority of search engine users. Therefore, a goal of SEO is to rank among the top ten so as to increase the amount of traffic visiting the website in question.
The third goals, but by all means, the least important is optimizing a website for organic traffic. Typically, SERPs will display organic results along with ads to increase the number of people. The goal of SEO is to optimize a webpage to appear high among the organic results and no the paid ads links.

Implementing SEO

Optimizing your website to achieve the above goals involves tinkering with your website to meet Google’s search engine ranking factors. Ranking factors are the various aspects of a website, webpage, content, and hyperlink profile that allows Google to determine the rank of a webpage, with the ultimate goal of serving the best content to search engine users.
Although it hard to determine the precise number of, SEO researcher and experts postulate that there are over 200 ranking factors, with each factor having its own unique cluster weight. One of the most significant ranking factors that Google uses is the link profile (including domain-level links and page level links) a website has.
After all, Google’s PageRank algorithm is a hyperlink ranking algorithm, it makes for backlinks to play a big role in influencing one’s rank. Other ranking factors include keyword use and optimization, social metrics, quality of content (in terms of comprehensiveness, uniqueness, and readability), page load speed, security of the website (use of SSL Certificate), etc.
For SEO purposes, ranking factors are classified under on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page SEO is the variety of optimization activities that you can carry out on the website. This typically involves optimizing a website to make it accessible, useful, and relevant to users. It includes keyword research and optimization, ironing out technical issues in the website, improving user experience, and much more.
Off-page SEO, on the hand, is the variety of activities that you can do beyond outside the website to improve your website’s visibility, traffic, and reputation. This includes searching for high-quality backlinks and promoting your content.

Still looking for more information on Search Engine Optimization?

Check out this great beginner video on SEO by Ahrefs

Contact MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing a Top Maryland SEO Company and schedule a free consultation to determine whether your website is helping or hurting you. Co-Founders Matt Ventura and Isaac Jeong will personally analyze your website and your SEO strategy. Fill out the discovery page to get the information you need to drive more traffic to your website.

If you would like to learn more useful SEO techniques check out our Google+ (Top Maryland SEO).

brand importance
Business, Design & Photography, Lifestyle & Hobby, Marketing, SEO, Social Media, Web Design

Building Your Brand: A Guide for New Businesses

Why Building A Brand Is So Important For New Businesses

When you are looking to build a business, one of the most important things that you are going to want to focus on is building out your brand. Building a brand is essential for new businesses in order to effectively establish themselves in the marketplace. Without building a brand, you are essentially putting yourself at a competitive disadvantage among the competition. After all, it is very likely that your competition is actively working to build and establish their own brand. Because of this, you want to focus on brand building strategies and techniques that will allow you to dominate the marketplace. Below, we will discuss some of the reasons why you want to build a brand and some effective strategies that you can use to do so.

Why Building A Brand Is Essential:

1. Pricing.

One of the biggest reasons building a brand is essential for any business is because it can help you establish better pricing. A lot of businesses make the mistake of not effectively building out a brand which can have a negative impact on positioning within the marketplace which can alter the pricing that you are able to establish with your brand. Because of this, your business might be forced to compete based on price alone with your competition which is typically a race to the bottom. You never want to force your business to compete with pricing alone. The best way to do this is through proper branding techniques and strategies.

2. Awareness.

Another good reason you are going to want to be sure to focus on brand building efforts is that it can help generate awareness for your business, products, and services. Because of this, you will be able to reduce the amount of money that you are forced to spend on marketing and advertising. Once you generate a good amount of awareness, you will be able to drive traffic much easier to your website which can have a compounding effect on your business as a whole.

3. Loyalty.

One of the biggest reasons you should be building a brand is to establish brand loyalty. Brand loyalty is a very powerful tool that you can leverage. By building out a brand that people love, you will be able to generate sales through your loyal following. This alone can really propel your business to new heights.

As you can see, building out a brand is essential if you are just getting started in the marketplace. Now that we have gone over some of the reasons you are going to want to be sure to build out a strong brand, we will discuss some of the key brand building tips that you will want to implement.

Brand Building Tips:

1. Social Media.

Social media should be at the forefront of your branding strategy. Social media has changed the game for marketers. Because you are able to effectively communicate with your prospective customers and target market like never before, it is a great way to establish authority in a niche, make connections, offer value to your audience, and more. This alone is a great way to build a successful brand and a lot of businesses utilize this strategy alone.

2. Consistency.

Another thing that you are going to want to focus on when you are building out a brand is consistency. You want everything to be consistent. Not only your brand message, but you should be consistent with material quality, pricing, design, and more.

Overall, there are a lot of different things that you can do to build out a successful brand. By following the tips above, you should be able to do so effectively.

 

By: Matt Ventura

Brand Management can be tough.  Developing strategies to marke your brand and grow it in a positive manner can be difficult. In that case, you will probably need the service of an SEO expert.

Contact MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing (https://metalinkd.com) and schedule a free consultation to determine whether your website is helping or hurting you. Co-Founders Matt Ventura and Isaac Jeong will personally analyze your website and your SEO strategy. Fill out the discovery page to get the information you need to drive more traffic to your website.

If you would like to learn more useful SEO techniques check out our Google+ (Top Maryland SEO).

Business, Marketing, SEO, Voice Search

Tips for Ranking higher in “Near Me” Searches

“Near me” Searches?

“Near me” searches have increased by over 130% within the past couple of years. It’s almost a natural instinct for society to search things like, “Auto Repair Shop Near me” or “Coffee Shop Near Me” to find services that are most convenient to them, So as business owners it’s important to capitalize on society’s tendencies. Now you’re probably wondering how to rank higher on near me searches? Well by following these steps you’ll be able to be on the same playing field as big brand companies like Goodyear or Starbucks.

Tips for Ranking Higher in “Near Me” Searches

Update Your Google My Business(GMB) Listing!

Google My Business is an important tool for Local SEO. I see a lot of companies that don’t take advantage of this feature by Google. By filling this out accurately consumers will have accessible information to the companies address, phone number, hours of operation, popular times and even directions from their location. Not only that, but by filling this out fully it helps Google identify your listing which will help with the ranking process.

Make sure you take the time to upload unique information. Use this checklist to avoid mistakes:

  • Custom profile image used instead of stock photos
  • Display name matches listed name
  • URL does not get redirected
  • Characters are not all capitalized
  • Legal terms, like LLC and Inc. are omitted
  • P.O. box and mailbox identification numbers are not included
  • No 1-800 numbers are listed
  • Local number featured instead of toll-free number
  • Business is verified with Google
  • Business has minimum of five Google reviews

Have your Customer Feedback Visible with Reviews

Over 60% of people trust reviews on websites like Yelp for destinations they have never been to. It’s common sense that a successful business wants to have great reviews, but did you know having customer reviews is one of the most influential factors to impact near me searches? This means an emphasis on getting regulars to leave a review for your establishment will help in the ranking process for Google and “near me” searches. Google makes it easy for customers to review a business. They simply have to open Google Maps, find your business, select “write a review,” and score it out of five stars.

By having more positive reviews not only on a rating of five stars, but by leaving meaningful and quality reviews will have a positive effect on the local search. This is especially true on Google Reviews, because Google has a greater emphasis on Google Reviews rather than other websites such as Yelp. So it is possible to rank higher than other business on local search if they have a high amount of Yelp reviews, but lack in Google Reviews.

 

Make sure the Business Name, Address & Phone Number (NAP) are clearly visible

Speed and efficiency is a top quality for Google. In order to optimize your site for local search it’s important to display the Business Name, Address & Phone Number on every page of the website. Not only is this essential for Google, but consider this in a consumer approach… By having the NAP readily available and easy to find the consumer is more likely to remember the establishment. Use schema markup for this information as well. For example, the schema markup for a local business in LA, Los Angeles SEO Services, includes data, like its address, region, postal code, and country.

 

Optimize Photos For Location

With social media being such a powerful tool by optimizing photos to include the location will significantly effect the presence of the business in “Near Me” searches.

 

Make Your Website Mobile Friendly

With over 70% of searches being via mobile device, it’s important to have your website optimized for mobile devices. That includes such things as the website speed, having a search bar, NAP is easily identifiable and just making sure that the transition from the website views on a desktop device to mobile scales correctly.

 

Get Backlinks with Geographic Anchor Text

Another factor that influences near me search results is the number of backlinks to your site that include the city name in the anchor text of the link, according to a study from Local SEO Guide. Ex. Virginia Beach’s Top Eats would be a great anchor text for a restaurant trying to rank in Virginia Beach.

A site that links back to you and includes your business’ state and city in the anchor text can be very advantageous. Google analyzes these backlinks to check your business’ authority, similar to the algorithms they use for global search.

For SEO, this also means that acquiring good backlinks may be even more important than we previously thought.

 

By: Matt Ventura

“Near Me” Searches can be difficult to rank for. Ensuring the correct digital marketing strategies have been implemented for content marketing can be even more difficult. In that case, you will probably need the service of an SEO expert.

Contact MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing (https://metalinkd.com) and schedule a free consultation to determine whether your website is helping or hurting you. Co-Founders Matt Ventura and Isaac Jeong will personally analyze your website and your SEO strategy. Fill out the discovery page to get the information you need to drive more traffic to your website.

If you would like to learn more useful SEO techniques check out our Google+ (Top Rockville SEO Expert).

Best SEO Rockville
Business, Design & Photography, Marketing, SEO, Social Media, Web Design

Why Small Businesses Shouldn’t Just Jump Into Content Marketing

Facebook and Instagram are platforms with immensely under priced attention, a statement that is consistently made by the social media guru, Gary Vaynerchuk. What does he mean by this? Simply put, it’s a whole lot cheaper to run ads on these platforms vs print ads on magazines while still having equal, or sometimes more, reach to a targeted audience. So, it’s a given that all businesses should jump right in, right? I’ll be answering this throughout the post.

As a content creator myself, I stay pretty active on Instagram. I spend a considerable time observing the changes that are occurring on the platform, particularly on the type of content that’s being put out by business profiles.

More recently, I see a lot more ads from businesses on my story feed on Instagram. It’s great that businesses are starting to allocate their marketing budget to platforms that allow for more specified reach than something like cable/TV. However, the issue is that most of these ads are not targeted to the right audience and the content has been poorly put together.

In regards to content quality, I am not referring to the quality of the camera used for production. The cost of the camera is most definitely not part of the equation in effective content marketing on social media. For example, there are plenty of influencers that primarily use their iPhones that have far greater engagement with the audience than a car ad produced using the most expensive camera equipment with highly paid experts. Ouch.

One of the major components of effective content marketing is the brand story. People don’t buy MacBooks because of the features of the laptop. Technically speaking, MacBooks don’t have the best features compared to other high-performance laptops. It’s the story put together by Steve Jobs and his team that drives the fanatical behavior of Apple consumers.

While it’s understandable that small businesses are limited in their resources compared to Apple, it is still important to be conscious of their intent and strategy in content marketing before jumping into it. Otherwise, businesses will be throwing money down the drain with ads that have no ROI and putting a lot of time, effort, and resources to create content that doesn’t convert.

Here are 5 questions I typically ask my clients that are just starting their social media marketing efforts. (These are not in any specific order)

1. Is it necessary for my business to enter all social media platforms?

2. What is the primary purpose of entering the digital space through social media?

3. Will the content marketing efforts address a particular bottleneck within my business?

4. Who is my target audience and how do we produce the right form of content?

5. What story does my business want to tell through the content?

The primary reason as to why it’s important for businesses to answer these types of questions is that the lack of intent in the brand story creation results in the consumers creating the story for the brands. Although this may not entirely be a bad thing, things could definitely go the wrong way when you let the chains loose. For example, running hundreds of ads of images with charts and diagrams along with tons of text within the image (which are all bad practices for content focused on images) might trigger a sense of spamming from the consumer’s perspective.

Answering the questions presented above might also help you decide your business needs to start an Instagram page vs. a blog series on LinkedIn. There is no “one size fits all” bundle in building a proper strategy for brand building purposes, and not all businesses need to be on every social media platform.

Not all businesses will need an active Instagram page, and not all businesses should take the same approach to connect with their audience.

Hopefully, my points had you thinking about different aspects that need to be addressed before jumping on board unto all social media platforms.

By Isaac Jeong

Content marketing can be difficult. Ensuring the correct digital marketing strategies have been implemented for content marketing can be even more difficult. In that case, you will probably need the service of an SEO expert.

Contact MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing (https://metalinkd.com) and schedule a free consultation to determine whether your website is helping or hurting you. Co-Founders Matt Ventura and Isaac Jeong will personally analyze your website and your SEO strategy. Fill out the discovery page to get the information you need to drive more traffic to your website.

If you would like to learn more useful SEO techniques check out our Google+ (Top Rockville SEO Expert).

Business, Lifestyle & Hobby, Marketing, SEO, Voice Search

Voice Search Algorithm in 2018

2018 SEO Trends: Understanding Mobile Voice Search Algorithms

Voice Search Algorithms on the rise!

The way people search for information online is drastically changing. Within the past 5 years there has been a transition from information being searched from a laptop to a mobile device. According to Hitwise, nearly 60 percent of searches are now performed on a mobile device. Now, the way people search for information has changed yet again. With new technology such as Google Home and Amazon echo, the idea of using voice search techniques is becoming common. It’s becoming such a hot trend that Apple has produced Siri, Google Voice for Android, Cortana for Microsoft and Alexa for Amazon products are all competing to be the top device of 2018.

The reason for this is that people have realized that searching with their voice is a lot more efficient than typing onto a small screen. Think about it, it’s much easier for someone to ask Cortana or Siri to play, “Just The Way You Are” by Bruno Mars than it is to type it. The technology has allowed a more natural way to interact with machines using a conversational voice. As SEO’s we must always adapt to the new trends and this is a great opportunity to adjust one’s marketing strategy to account for the rise in Voice Search. Just take a look at this 2016 Internet Trends Report

 

increase-in-voice-search-share

How to Optimize for Voice Search? Long-Tailed Searches are your new best friend!

Studies have shown that voice searches are typically longer than text queries. For example, it’s more common to for mobile voice search engines to hear, “What is the weather outside right now?” Rather than when typing people will typically just type “Today’s weather” This brings an opportunity for Long-Tailed Keyword Searches to come back into search engine algorithm!

The Good and the Bad

How does this help SEO’s? Well, first it means that ranking content for a specific long tailed makes an SEO’s job much easier. Long-Tailed Keyword ranking is much easier than a more specific search due to the lesser amount of competition.

The downfall to this new trend is that developing a strategy for what specific Long-Tailed Keyword Search one wants to rank for will be difficult. Let’s face it, there’s no true data that has been released that tells us what people are searching most for via voice search. If two individuals wanted to order pizza one could say, “Find nearby Brooklyn Style Pizza” while another could voice search, “Order Thin Crust Pizza Now” This is why creating a marketing strategy will require a lot more research into a specific industry, before pursuing actions.

 

Here at MetaLinkd, we are excited to take on this task and find ways to be more optimized and more well versed in this specific technique. What kind of algorithms do you think search engines will pick up next? How much more do you think voice search will affect the industry? Comment below your thoughts!

Creating a Digital Marketing Plan can be difficult. Ensuring the correct digital marketing strategies have been implemented for Voice Search can be even more difficult. In that case, you will probably need the service of an SEO expert.

Contact MetaLinkd SEO & Digital Marketing (https://metalinkd.com) and schedule a free consultation to determine whether your website is helping or hurting you. Co-Founders Matt Ventura and Isaac Jeong will personally analyze your website and your SEO strategy. Fill out the discovery page to get the information you need to drive more traffic to your website.

If you would like to learn more useful SEO techniques check out our Google+ (Top Rockville SEO Expert).