Business Blogging and The Power of Marketing Online

Why use blogging for website marketing

There is no doubt that blogging is today a popular marketing channel for many businesses. But despite this, many people still associate blogging with probloggers – those who build blogs with the principal purpose of making money with them.

However, we must understand that blogs are versatile instruments that can be employed in your business marketing. Even if you are not a professional blogger (problogger) you can still use a blog to market your home business on the net. Your blog can be used as a promotional blog for your home business website.

The truth is that adding a blog to your business website can greatly improve your online successful. A blog will help drive a constant stream of readers/customers to your products offerings. It is a business tool that can help you update your site with informative content that will keep readers coming back for more.

Top 6 Reasons Why Your Business Site Need a Blog

1. A Constant Flow of Fresh Content

Installing a blog on your website gives you the ability to add new content to your website on a regular basis. This helps customers/visitors to develop trust in your product and your knowledge.

If this content is relevant and important to your clients and potential customers it will help to increase the credibility of your business. This will greatly improve your chances of adding these readers as future customers.

Once they have come to have that trust in you because of the free information you’re providing for them, you can be sure of future of sales from these people.

2. Improve Your Site’s SEO

As a business entrepreneur marketing your products online, getting your web pages on the first page of the search engine result pages (SERPs) is something you wouldn’t want to toil with. This is what search engine optimization (SEO) is all about. A blog can really be helpful in this area.

For example, it is a confirmed fact today that ranking high on the search engines requires a constant flow of fresh and good content on your website. Adding a blog to your business website will help you to constantly add a regular supply of fresh optimized content to your site.

Once the search engines decide that the content is good, unique, and relevant to people, your ratings will improve. These higher rankings will translate into more potential customers discovering you on the search engines and ultimately drive up your profits!

3. Ease of Pinging the Search Engines

Another advantage of a blog in regards to the search engines is that a blog helps your business website to stay fresh on the search engine records. This is because blogs are designed with the ability to ping the most popular search engines each time you make a change to your blog – this is especially with WordPress blogs.

This is very helpful as it moves your blog up in the ranks of popular websites. Once this happens your blog would be on the list of sites which viewers will find first when they search. Another traffic generator for your business website.

4. Your Own Customized Media

Having your own blog is like having your own personal media forum. It is like owning your own newspaper, radio or television station. This means you have a place to air your views on general topics of interest and your product/ service.

You don’t have to worry about anyone censoring you or twisting your words for your personal gain. This will greatly help in the flow of communication about your products and cut down on time between messages.

Whenever communication is increased, it can be assumed that sales, and therefore profit, can be increased as well.

5. Gain More Insight About Your Market

Using a blog for marketing your business website will help to make you more educated in your field. This is because you will have to spend some time doing a little research to be able to write interesting blog posts.

Showing what you know will help you to promote yourself as an expert and will increase reader/customer trust in you and your product. And in today’s economy people will always want to go to the expert for help. So a blog can really be a powerful branding tool.

6. Blogs Provide Free Advertising for Your Business

With the popularity of blogs today they are often picked up by other online and offline media. This means additional press and free advertisement for your business!

Blogs are most times quoted by other blogs, websites, and even in print communication such as newspapers and magazines. Many bloggers have been interviewed on highly rated online media setting them up as experts.This most times is the break through that many bloggers are awaiting for to catapult them into limelight.

Conclusion

Indeed, adding a blog to your business website is something you wouldn’t want to miss out on because the gains are enormous.

However, you must be prepared to invest a little time up front to create an attractive site that will grab people’s attention. Besides, you must be willing to spend a few hours a day, four or five times a week, to keep the blog updated.

There are a number of ways you can go with blogs, but be sure to use the one that is right for you. Consider your needs and take some time to research your options before making a final selection.

If you have challenges setting up a blog on your website you can click here to get a professional, SEO optimized wordpress blog specially designed for you for FREE!

Have a few other reasons why your business site needs a blog? Share with us in your comments below.

Little Known Cornerstones For Longlasting Online Business Success!

In the first part of this article I presented just one of the cornerstones for building an enduring and successful online business – having a right and healthy mindset. In this second and concluding part I want to present you with the remaining 3 cornerstones. I do hope you will find these ones as helpful as you did the first.

But I know many will want to ask why the much interest in these cornerstones?

My answer to that is because building a business is like building a house. Every building engineer knows the importance of a solid foundation to a building. In fact, the foundation, to a great extent, determines the building structure. The higher the building is expected to be, the deeper the foundation!

This is very much the same when building a business. If you expect something that will stand the test of time then laying the right foundation is a must. That is why you must take seriously these 4 cornerstones we are discussing.

Having said that, let’s now take a look at the remaining cornerstones that are necessary to build a successful business online.

2. Use the Power of Leverage

If you’ve been online for a while you will readily note that there are different business models you can choose from when building a business online. All of these models have their own pros and cons.  And of course, some are more successful than others.

However, whatever the model you decide to choose, you mustn’t forget to employ all of the power that the internet offers to make your online business successful. No stone should be left unturned. Learn to leverage search engine optimization (seo). Proper leveraging of seo will quickly get your business blog/website indexed by the search engines. Leveraging seo includes proper structuring of your site, using the right keywords in the right places, implementing the right linking structure both on-site and off-site and providing sticky content that will appeal to both the search engines and your human visitors.

Another area of leveraging the internet is using online social media to build a brand for yourself, your website and your products.  Build your reputation and credibility using Private Label Rights (PLR) products. These give you the power to create your own products with ease. You can easily do some re-writing, change the name  and put your own  and then give them away to reap the gains of viral marketing with ease.

Other areas include the use of software programs to free up your time while building your business. Doing this will enable you work for less but achieve much. For example, you can use auto-responders to automate your operations. Tracking tools will help you better understand what’s happening in your business so that you can take better informed decisions that will drive your business on the right lane.

3. Build the Right Relationships

Ever heard the saying: “It is not What you know, but Who you know that counts”? Indeed that may be an old saying but it is nevertheless true when it comes to building your online business. The cornerstone of good solid relationships mustn’t be toyed with. It should be one of your top priorities.

In our everyday life, building social relationships help us insert ourselves into social situations which gives us the opportunity to come in contact with people who have interests that are similar to or complimentary to our own.

The same happens when we establish business relationships. With the right business relationships you can insert yourself into business situations where you will meet others who have businesses that are similar to or complimentary to your own business. Attending real brick and mortar business seminars and online teleseminars and webinars, will help you build friendly business relationships with not only your peers but also with those who are in position to help you.

4. Find a Capable Mentor

It isn’t likely that there is a more valuable asset that a new netrepreneur can have than a good and capable mentor. Someone who has already made all of the mistakes can help you avoid making all of the mistakes yourself.

They have the wisdom that comes from experience. And with this they can easily point out pitfalls to help direct you toward the better of choices.

But why, you may ask, would anyone who has made it want to take their time to help a newbie succeed?

Of course they do it for various reasons. But the most common one is because they desire to see what they know outlive them. And this they do by teaching what they already know to other up and coming netrepreneurs. However most of these successful internet marketers wouldn’t want to waste their time on anyone who has not already worked hard to lay the first three corner stones themselves. These potential mentors are looking for new comers who show that they have a right and healthy mindset, who are working hard at leveraging and who are well aware of how important it is to know all the players and the RIGHT people.

In short, the new comer most likely to get a mentor is one who is already working hard and helping himself and not looking for someone who can just smooth the way for him. So you must learn to work your online business implementing the first 3 cornerstones we have mentioned above.

Conclusion: I don’t know about you but right from the start of my online business journey what has always been in my mind is to build a business that will not just take advantage of the present opportunity but also will stand the test of time. And this is why every action I take in this business is to build on this foundation secured on these 4 cornerstones. You too can decide the direction of your online business. What you need is setting up the right foundation for your online business by getting a right and healthy mindset, using the right leveraging tools, building the right business relationships and working on getting the right mentor(s).

Of course we all love comments –  Give your reactions to this article in the comments below!

Google Algorithm Change: Are You Bracing Up For The Impact?

Did you know Google recently effected another algorithm change?

Did you care to know what the change is all about and how it can affect you as a blogger?

Ok, I know that many bloggers don’t really care about search engine optimization (SEO) and of those who care, most consider google as too over bearing on such matters. To them Google is simply a dictator when it comes to search engine marketing.

In fact, I’m sure if those who consider Google as a dictator will have their way, they will be on the cyber streets protesting the over bearing nature of Google just as it’s happening in North Africa right now! 🙂

But the truth is, no matter what you may think, we must give it to google for their effort to sanitize the Information Super High Way.

To better appreciate the stand of Google as regards these constant changes which always impact negetively in the rankings of most websites, you will need to read the official Google blog announcing the recent algorithm changes. Simply, the purpose as stated by Amit Singhal, Google Fellow, and Matt Cutts, Principal Engineer on the Official Google Blog is:

To give people the most relevant answers to their queries as quickly as possible. This requires constant tuning of our algorithms, as new content—both good and bad—comes online all the time.

Considered carefully, we must agree with google that these changes are definitely neccessary. You’ll agree that if google has not from time to time effected changes like this, the value of information published on most websites would have fallen below worthless!

But Do These Changes Really Matter To Bloggers?

When I first learnt of the new algorithm changes a few days ago I was concerned for the simply fact that most of my blogs and niche sites depends essentially on organic search traffic.

And I believe that if your blog is deriving much of its traffic from the search engines then you should be concerned also. Of course, the recent algorithm change is mostly in the US but it’s not out of place to prepare your sites now even if you’re not in the US. Very soon the changes will be propagated to other country-specific Google sites like google.co.in, google.com.ng and google.co.uk and if you’re not prepared then you’ll find yourself in the cyber dust!

A Look At What This Recent Google Algorithm Change Is About

Having gone through the Official Google Blog, I was able to pick out some salient points that matters as regards this new change. Here’s another quote from the blog:

Many of the changes we make are so subtle that very few people notice them. But in the last day or so we launched a pretty big algorithmic improvement to our ranking—a change that noticeably impacts 11.8% of our queries—and we wanted to let people know what’s going on. This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful. At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites—sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on…

I’m sure you can readily pick out what matters in that statement. The purpose is in two parts:

1. To Reduce Rankings For Low Quality Sites

These are what many people has refered to as content farm sites. Most of them are nothing but worthless aggregated content. Most times these sites simply copy content from other sites without really adding any value. Auto-generated content sites comes to mind here.

But, they are not alone. I’m sure sites that publish articles that are retweaked using article re-writing software may also be affected. This blog post by EzineArticles.com definitely points to that fact:

This past Thursday, Google announced an algorithm change to 11.8% of their U.S. search query results. Their target was aimed at content farms that are typically low-quality sites, sites with only copied content and sites with low value content.

While we adamantly disagree with anyone who places the “Content Farm” label on EzineArticles.com, we were not immune to this algorithm change. Traffic was down 11.5% on Thursday and over 35% on Friday. In our life-to-date, this is the single most significant reduction in market trust we’ve experienced from Google.

I’m sure youll agree with me that EzineArticles is one of the leading article directory on the net right now and that they are very strict when it comes to the type of article published on the site. But did you noticed that this google algorithm change has affected the site so much that Chris Knight, CEO of EzineArticles.com says, “In our life-to-date, this is the single most significant reduction in market trust we’ve experienced from Google.”

And because of these changes, EzineArticles.com is introducing some very serious changes to the type of articles any one can submit to the site! One of the drastic measures the site is thinking of implementing is removing “dofollow” even from the author’s resource box because they realize many people submit articles to the site simply to gain backlinks.

Now don’t you think that is a lesson for those of us who have “dofollow” blogs and accept guest postings?

2. To Provide Better Rankings For High-Quality Sites

This is the second purpose of the algorithm change. And this is where you’d want to be! 🙂 Seriously!

So if you’re want to take advantage of these new changes what should you be doing?

The answer is provided for us right there on the official announcent. Here it is again:

At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites—sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on.

A look at the statement tells you what you should concentrate on if you want to make an impact as far as the google search engine is concerned. And please note that apart from these recent changes, google says more will be coming in the days ahead! And who knows other search engines may just be joining the dance!

Frankly, I see a revolutionary change in the internet marketing cycles because this is where most of these recycled content are mostly found. That of course is good for the internet or don’t you think so?

So it’s time to look and plan ahead now. Don’t let the almighty Google give you a slap that you’ll never be able to wake up from. Think that google is only targeting content farms and not blogger like you? Then read what the regrets of this blogger here.

Over to you: What do think of this algorithm change? Do you support google with the changes? If yes can you suggest some other areas they can affect more changes? If no, what are your reasons?

Search Engine Optimization: Is It Really Important To Bloggers?

This post is a response to what I’ve read on many blogs lately. I must say I’m really surprised that many bloggers believe and want us to believe that search engine optimization (SEO) is not really of much importance to bloggers. But is that really so?

Now, I’m not in any way against their opinion, at least everyone is entitled to his/her own opinion.  However, I really want to think most of these bloggers are either ignorant of the power of the search engines when it comes to marketing online or they are merely parroting what they have heard from others. Possibly they have heard one of those big guns in the blogosphere with a 10,000+ contact list down-playing generating traffic using search engines and without really understanding the whole scenario run off repeating what he/she had just heard.

Again, I don’t want to dispute the fact that the search engines love blogs because of the ease with which blogs constantly update their contents. But the truth is that this will only garner some good points with the search engines. You need to understand that there so much competition right now in the blogosphere and this is enough to make any blogger to take the subject of search engine optimization really serious.

Another fact you must come to terms with is that internet marketing is a numbers game and to win the game you need the proper knowledge and tools. So if your dream as a blogger is to build a business online making money blogging then you cannot afford to lose your guard in the race to get ranked high in the search engines, else you might just get trampled upon and be left in the abyss of dotcom failures!

In this article I want to pinpoint some very fundamental reasons why you need to use search engine optimization tactics in promoting your blog now than ever before. But first, let’s really understand what search engine optimization means.

Search Engine Optimization In Simple Terms!

Search engine optimization is the internet marketing tactic that utilizes tools and methods in making your blog get a top ranking in search engine results. These tactics are aimed at getting your blog in the first page or better still in the top half of the page of the search results. Such a top ranking on the search engines is for the purpose of driving more traffic to your blog or website.

Of course, there are many aspects and work required to make search engine optimization work for you. For example, there is the need to get information about the keyword phrases that are popular in regard to your blog’s niche or theme and then writing your content with the right keyword phrases without making it too commercial but light and informative. There is also the need to collaborate with other blogs and sites for link exchanges as the search engines uses all of these components to rank sites. But all in all the effort is always worth it if done well.

That being said let’s now consider some reasons why search engine optimization could be of great importance to you as a blogger.

4 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Search Engine Optimization

1. Search Engines Still Remains The Most Popular Way Of People Finding Information Online

It’s true that today social networking sites play some very important roles when someone wants information about a topic of interest. Yes, many will ask questions of their social contacts for referrals but most times the first recourse is the search engines. This has always been the case since the inception of the internet. Search engines have always been the most popular and of course the easiest means of finding any topic of interest online. Even when we need personal endorsements or reviews of a particular product or brand we go straight to the search engines and do a search using those terms. So the search engines still play a very crucial role in finding information online. As a blogger therefore you cannot afford to ignore such a powerful way of promoting your business online. And remember this makes marketing your blog much simpler. It only bears down to mastering some basic search engine optimization (seo) strategies and methods and you could place your blog and business before the right audience without any extra cost to you.

Appealing, right?

2. In Search Engine Marketing, The Eyes Have It!

Search engine optimization is not just about getting your site or blog into the search engines. That is where many bloggers are getting it all wrong. As mentioned above people turn to the search engines whenever they need any information online. But most importantly most of the people will only care about the ten top search results. These are usually the search results in the first page. It means you have to get the eyes of the searchers or you risk losing out in the game. So making it to the first page, more so to the top three is a barometer of succeeding when it comes to using the search engine to drive traffic to your blog. This is why optimizing your blog for the search engines is something to take seriously. Once your blog is able to make it to the top ten in the search results it stands a better chance of being clicked on thereby bringing more traffic for your blog.  What will help you to achieve all of these is what search engine optimization is all about.

3. Search Engines Produces A More Targeted And Income-Generating Traffic Stream

Now, I must say that after many years of testing and from results gathered from authority sources, traffic from search engines is not only targeted but also more prone to generate an income for any e-commerce site. So if you’re a blogger who do product reviews and promote affiliate products this is very important. Optimizing your blog for the search engines will help it get the best ready-to-buy traffic than any other traffic sources. Of course, we must agree that most of the people using the search engines might just be looking for information but there is also a good percentage that is looking for something that they need. And when you’re able to get your offering before this group of people on the search engines you’re sure of making a sale.

I’ve observed that many bloggers focus more on generating traffic from other blogs. As much as this is okay but this type of traffic really amount to very little. Most bloggers only visit other blogs for backlinks and traffic generation. If you truly want better results for your affiliate marketing endeavours then focus on those who are searching for your products or services. If anyone has a need to be met and goes to the search engines to do a search and finds your site, that prospects is more prune to generate a sale for you than a blogger who comes around for his/her own benefit. This is also goes that if your target audience is those who want to make money blogging then you need to optimize your blog for them! 🙂
4. Getting Found On The Search Engines Is Kind Of Having Goodwill In The Eyes Of Your Prospect

I did say in #3 above that traffic from search engines is more prone to producing some income for you. And that is very true. Come to think of it, which one of the following do you think will be more willing to purchase a product you’re selling on your blog (a) a prospect who gets emails, facebook updates and twitter direct messages/tweets from you or (b) a prospect who finds your blog article on the search engines while looking for information on a particular subject?

I’m sure you already know the answer to that, right? A prospect who finds you on the search engines will be more willing to purchase because of the fact that he/she initiated the move and is in the right frame of mind since that is what he/she needs. Finding you on the search engines gives you the status of an authority or expert in that field in the eyes of that searcher and this is goodwill on your part. So once your article is able to deliver the goods when this prospect visits your blog from the search engines, there is nothing stopping you getting a new customer!

Conclusion: I don’t know what you think about the subject of search engine optimization. Maybe you sometimes get that feeling that it’s a subject that has been talked about too much by bloggers, but the fact still remains that when it comes to traffic generation on the internet, search engines are still the go to resources. It’s imperative therefore that you find ways of making your blog rank better on the search engines. Whatever it takes learn the rudiments of search engine optimization and put them use on your blog. Act now for time is expensive marketing online.

Have any qualms with the issues raised or do you agree? Let’s have your views. Share them with us in the comments below.

Learn more about this topic visit:  [amazon_link id=”0789738317″ target=”_blank” ]The Truth About Search Engine Optimization[/amazon_link]

22 Quick Tips That Will Increase Your Website/Blog Ranking And Traffic!

What many people who want to build an online business don’t know is the fact that there are some basic principles when it comes to generating traffic to your website/blog. It doesn’t matter what language the SEO experts may want to use when talking about search engine optimization these basic principles are what really determines your success when it comes to search engine marketing. Most times it’s these seo jargons that scares most of us but that shouldn’t be the case.

Below are some quick SEO tips that will push your blog or business website to the top of the search engines for that much coveted traffic. It doesn’t matter what you may have heard, if you’re interested in generating traffic using search engine optimization (seo) tactics, then understanding and implementing the following quick tips will do you a whole lot of good.

1.   Create a site/blog with valuable content, products or services.

2.   Write your content bearing in mind your primary and secondary keywords. Place these keywords  within the first 25 words in your content and evenly distribute them throughout the article.

3.   Research and write your content using the right keywords/phrases in order to attract your target audience.

4.   Use your target keywords in the right fields and references like Title, META tags, Headers, etc.

5.   Keep your site/blog design simple so that your customers can navigate easily between web pages.    This will help them easily find what they want and buy products and services.

6.   Submit each and every page on your site, not just the home page, to the most popular search    engines and directory services. Hire someone to do so, if required. With a wordpress blog you can    easily do this by installing the google sitemap generator plugin.

7.   Keep track of changes in search engine algorithms and processes and accordingly modify your web pages so your search engine ranking remains high. Use online tools and utilities to keep track of how your website is doing.

8.   Monitor your competitors and the top ranked websites to see what they are doing right in the way of design, navigation, content, keywords, etc.

9.   Use your Google Analytics traffic reports and logs from your web hosting company to see where your traffic is coming from. Analyze your visitors’ location, source of traffic and the keywords they used to find you and see what you can improve upon.

10.  Make your customer/blog reader’s visit easy. Offer them different options to remember you and       always wanting to visit again. These could be in the form of newsletters, free reports, reduction coupons etc.

11.   Whatever your target market maybe demonstrate your expertise by writing and submitting articles  to article  directories so you are perceived as an expert in that field.

12.   Don’t know what to do? Hire professionals. It’s better and less expensive in the long run to  have a website/blog that helps you achieve your aim than spending your money on a website/blog which no one visits.

13.   Your website/blog should not be a static brochure. Find ways of making it dynamic either by changing the theme from time to time, or installing scripts.

14.   Update your website pages frequently because stagnant sites are dropped by some search engine. If you have a static website, installing a blog on the site is good way of ensuring constant     updating of your site.

15.   If you’re selling a product, allow customers to ‘opt in’ to get discounts and special offers.  Place a link on your site to invite customers to ‘opt in’ to get a monthly newsletter or valuable coupons.

16.   Add a “Book Mark” or “Add this site to your Favorites” script to your website pages.

17.   Add a link ‘Recommend this site to a Friend’ so that the visitor can email your website link, with a prewritten title, “Thought you might be interested in this”, just by clicking on it.

18.   Brand your website/blog so that visitors always know they are on your site. Use consistent colors, logos and slogans and always provide a ‘Contact Us’ link on each page.

19.   Create an ‘Our Policies’ page that clearly defines your philosophy and principles in dealing  with your customers. Also post your privacy policy as well so that clients know they are secure  when they visit your site.

20.   Websites selling products should have a FAQ page which addresses most of the doubts and clarifications about the product or company that are likely to be asked. This helps to resolve most of the customers doubts in their first visit.

21.   Ensure that each page on your website has appropriate titles and keywords so that your customers can find their way back to your site if they lose the book mark.

22.  If you offer a mailing list on your site never spam or send unsolicited emails. Honour the request of those who decides to ‘opt out’ of your mailings.

Ultimately, your webiste/blog should be built with your target audience in mind. As the saying goes, the customer is king! This is not only true in the brink and mortar business world it’s also true about businesses online. A website or blog built with only the search engines in mind will only turn out to be failure!

Do you agree with these tips? Let us know which you’re applying right now to your online business webiste/blog.