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Despite Headlines…The Recession Drags On

Posted under Digital Marketing on Tuesday, 23 May 2017 by

home for sale

Now that The Great Recession of 2008–2010 has lessened its grip on the country, how are people who own homes responding? It affects moving, construction, retail, landscaping and real estate. Are people moving?

The short answer is “not as often,” according to The New York Times, front page, May 15, 2017. That means it’s a “seller’s market” in most areas, and it impacts the economy negatively.

In fact, “median home ownership tenure” rose to 8.5 years in 2016. That’s up from only 3.5 years before the Recession began in 2008. This is according to data from Moody’s Analytics and First American Financial Corporation. This is happening even though the economy has improved and more people are back at work. Economists think that this trend will continue for the next decade, or even longer, because as the economy improves, mortgage rates rise. As fewer people are moving as often, here’s yet another reason to step up your online presence.

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How To Choose The Best SEO Company In Detroit, Michigan

Posted under Digital Marketing on Monday, 22 May 2017 by

online marketing and SEO

Ten years ago, the word “SEO,” which is an abbreviation of Search Engine Optimization, was a rarity. In addition, advertising agencies specializing in SEO were a rarity. Back in 2006 when Ottaway Communications, Inc. switched its name to OttawayDigital, people were buying Google AdWords by the dozen. Seriously, by the dozen.

In fact, when I attended a seminar presented by Yahoo Search Marketing which had just bought Overture Search Marketing, the speaker, Mark Evans from Los Angeles, asked for a show of hands as to how many people were buying 50 keywords… how many 100… how many 1,000? Only Ted Handelsman who owns The Better Health Store raised his hand. He was the only one of about 60 people in the conference room at the Hyatt Regency Dearborn on August 15, 2006 who was bidding on more than 1,000 keywords. Laughable now, but dead serious then.

It was at this moment that Ottaway Communications moved from Traditional to Digital. And why not? We saw the light. We saw the opportunity.

With this opportunity in Digital Marketing came the Organic side of the equation: SEO. Now 11 years later in 2017, every ad agency has seen the light. All ad agencies are “digital” ad agencies and all of them are “experts” in SEO. Maybe so. Maybe not.

So being the pioneer in digital advertising in Detroit, Michigan, we are well positioned to help you determine how to choose the SEO company to best optimize your website.

May we suggest:

  1. How is the digital agency structured? What are their departments?
  2. How many employees do they have in each department? SEO doesn’t need to be an urgent undertaking, but occasionally it does, and certainly a reasonable turn-around time of 2–3 days is to be expected.
  3. What is the experience level of the employees in each department? Satisfy yourself that they have the training and experience to make your site soar.
  4. Get a list of all the services included in the SEO Agreement. Does it include website design and development, or is that extra?
  5. If the SEO company does not do website design and development, who does it then? Get the site name for that outsourced company and determine what work they have done in the past. If there is not a list of their work on their site, ask for it.
  6. What is the track record(s) of the SEO services company(ies) that you are considering? Can they show you any past achievements based on third-party data like Google Analytics or Google Webmaster Tools?
  7. Get at least three references from three current clients.
  8. Does the SEO services firm specialize in any vertical? Say you own a CPA firm. Have they ever designed a site for a CPA firm, or a similar type of professional services firm?
  9. What are the terms of their agreement? Is it more than month-to-month? If so, ask why. It is not really a good idea to be locked into an annual contract with an ad agency. If it’s not working, you need to get a divorce immediately. It is fair that an SEO services company asks for at least three months before you can cancel as it takes about that amount of time to see some traction in the search engines from their work, but after that, they should be earning their fee every month. Ask for a “no contract” deal after the first three months.
  10. How are they writing their content? By what standards? By what procedures? By what authority? Do they make use of Big Data to verify and authenticate their written pages? You have a right to know. If they don’t, you could be basing your website on one or two employees who might leave that SEO firm at any time.

These are certainly ten of the most important considerations in vetting your SEO services prospects. SEO has become a “cottage industry.” Every agency is jumping on the bandwagon. That makes your job even more challenging and difficult, but with the ten tips above, you should be well into attaining the knowledge you need to make a valuable decision for your company about its website optimization.

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7 Reasons to Hire a No Contract SEO Company

Posted under Digital Marketing on Wednesday, 17 May 2017 by

Why “No Contract” SEO Works Best

SEO contract

The services of a Search Engine Optimization consultant are wide and varied. If you were to look at a list of Best Practices it would include about 20 major topics with dozens of sub-headings. The goal of working through all these SEO requirements is to please your prospective readers who may become your customers.

Since this is such an in-depth and complicated topic there are many approaches, and most of them will take time to gain traction with Google and other search engines. You will, however, have a gut feeling of whether your site overall is gaining more leads and satisfying more people. If you don’t see the proper amount of effort and the results are not where you’d want them to be, you do not want to be stuck with your current provider until the 12 months elapse on your contract.

Our Top 7 Reasons for Not Hiring an SEO Company On Contract:

  1. SEO may not work on your site. SEO can be unpredictable. It simply may not work on your current website.
  2. SEO misunderstandings are common. SEO is vaguely defined by many people. Ask your SEO consultant to provide you with their definition of SEO. Make sure that you and they are on the same page.
  3. SEO has a time delay. Perfecting SEO takes a lot of time and talent. Ask your SEO company salesperson how many full-time people they have on staff.
  4. Are they able to deliver on time? If they do not have a minimum of two people in Content and two in IT, they probably will not be timely in making updates.
  5. If no prior experience, you may want out sooner than later. SEO can require a lot of testing. Does the SEO company that you are interviewing have enough staff to test what they are recommending? Have they used it on another website before? Are they familiar with the results?
  6. Key team member churn. How long have the people you are working with been there? If they leave, who will you be working with?
  7. Who will perform the SEO work? Do they have their own staff or contract it out? Quality often suffers if work is outsourced, not to mention the time lag.

There are many firms that work without a contract. Check them out. Compare them. See which one is a good fit for you. Besides our companies, OttawayDigital.com and UnbundledSEO.com, consider tophatrank.com, attract.click, zagoumenov.com, makeitactive.com, oneclickwi.com and reputableseomarketing.com. All of these companies offer “No Contract SEO Services.”

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Update Your Company’s Windows Computers After Recent Malware Attack

Posted under Digital Marketing on Monday, 15 May 2017 by

computer security

Windows issued a security patch March 14, 2017 which would have prevented this attack on any computer. More than 200,000 attacked computers in 150 countries were running older Windows programs that had not been updated. If all of your computers are on Windows 10, they were not vulnerable. WINDOWS PROGRAMS BEFORE WINDOWS 10 WERE ATTACKED. PLEASE READ AND FOLLOW THIS RELEASE FROM MICROSOFT TO UPDATE YOUR COMPUTERS: Microsoft Security Bulletin MS17-010.

“The malware believed to be behind the attacks encrypts data on infected computers and essentially holds it for ransom, demanding money from users in return for their files. Known as WannaCry or Wanna Decryptor, the so-called ransomware program homes in on vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows systems,” according to an article from the Wall Street Journal. We wrote to many of you last year warning of more and more ransomware attacks over a year ago, as our cyber expert, Bryan Seely predicted. He and other experts are warning that more, less-vulnerable malware is likely to be released this coming week.

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Land Your Business Website on Page One of Google

Posted under Digital Marketing on Tuesday, 2 May 2017 by

blogging online

You know from past SEO Facts that 91% of all searchers don’t search beyond Page One of Google. Let’s say you and your SEO company/webmaster have been working diligently for a year or more and your site is still not anywhere near Page One. Thus, your business is possibly missing out on all sorts of revenue. If you’re frustrated we understand, but here’s a strategy worth trying.

Write a blog! Easier said than done, we know, but it can provide big benefits… even landing your website on Page One of Google. Why? Google is putting fewer and fewer individual businesses on Page One of their Search Engine Page Returns (SERPs) and more and more directories, aggregators and review sites (Yelp, TripAdvisor, Angie’s List). In addition, many times articles make it to Page One. So here’s your chance. Write a blog and publish it on your website. Google will index it for sure, and if they think it’s really of value and interest to their searches, they just might move it to Page One. We think it’s really worth a try!

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