Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Chicago Internet Marketing Company | Integraphix

Internet Marketing Firm

Increasing your income level in today's market can be challenging, with the economy heading south day after day. There are a few ways to help yourself. The first way is to pound the pavement with a good resume, the second is to start your own home based business. A home based business can be a little scary, but it can boost your income level if you do it correctly.

Internet Marketing can give a home based business an edge against other small businesses. It just has to be run like a business and not a hobby for it to make money for you. Stop and think about it for a minute, millions of people use the internet everyday from looking for a hair stylist or an investment to products and services. With that in mind, a good website, marketing plan, and a product to sell you could see a big boost in your income level. Starting an internet marketing strategy for your home business can have you putting in alot of hours at first to get everything up and running, but eventually the business will start running itself 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Then all you do is adjust things a few hours a day to keep it fresh.

Controlling your time and the zero's on your paycheck is very important these days, and with this type of business you can. Imagine, making enough money to take a vacation when you want, paying your house off early, or buying a new car with cash instead of getting a loan for it.

For more information on Integraphix, SEO and Internet Marketing Services visit www.integraphix.com

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Chicago Internet Marketing: Link Building & SEO

Chicago Internet Marketing: Link building strategies aren’t just for SEO. The true purpose of building links is to market your content to your target market.

Your website content may revolve around sales, product reviews, articles, blogs or a tutorial with a strong 'call to action, but regardless of the type of content, inbound links are essential to market the content you're pushing. These links, often called backlinks, are the method that you communicate with your audience: it's an open door to view your website or product.

It's much to easy to get caught up in the non-social aspect of web content development, search engine optimization, or Chicago Internet Marketing. We forget the purpose of what we're doing: talking to our target market. 

When we're researching keywords and checking volume vs. profit potential, we forget that behind those Google stats are real people that are searching for things they actually need, typing the same phrases into their favorite SE. Your mom, your brother, someone halfway around the world. They're all people.

Making a connection with that concept will help you frame your content much better, and position your links in the best possible way. What is the best way? Answer your viewer's questions, and offer a solution to what they're searching for the most. It will help them to see what you're truly offering and allow you to communicate with them better as you learn.
Creating content is a business, just the same that SEO is marketing. But we must remember that these are simply tools in the large toolbox that is Internet Marketing. They are the means to your objective: to reach out on a large scale and interact with your target market online.

Meet your marketing where they are: Facebook, Twitter, Forums, Blogs, etc. Engage them by addressing the thoughts and questions they've got, and answer their questions. Become an authority. Even if you make a sale, don't stop communicating and be sure to follow up and address any needs they have after the fact.
Remember this: Your backlinks (inbound links) aren't just for search engines. Search engines are reading your content, but human eyes are being sold by it. Put the social human element back into your Internet Marketing strategy and it will work for both you AND your customers.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why Bloggers Should NOT use Wordpress

I read an article recently on Why Beginners Should Blog With WordPress, I was a unhappy with that article so decided to write an opposing viewpoint on why WordPress is actually NOT good for beginner bloggers. For those that are wondering, I am talking about professional blogging with WordPress.org  - not WordPress.com.

WordPress.org needs some initial investment

If you're not prepared to pay for a hosting package, custom domain url, set-up fees, installation and template installations, then you do not want WordPress.org. Since most bloggers who are hoping to make a buck by posting relevant articles and using ads on their website usually start with $0 in the bank, WordPress poses some obstacles. It's also not really great for 'niche' blogging. It is good for SEO purposes as WordPress allows you to add link titles, but in my opinion, Blogger is just as good for SEO as WordPress is.

Requires technical knowledge to install and configure

Unless you're a web designer or developer, or happen to be technically skilled in the web area, WordPress.org is not meant for you as it requires some basic skills to install. If you're a beginner, and want to start a blog, use Blogger! This site is Blogger, and it has to be the best platform for both beginner and experienced computer users and bloggers. It's user friendly and it's got many of the features that WordPress has. The best part? It's free.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Palatine, IL Online Marketing Company

Optimizing your business website for search engines is becoming one of the most popular techniques for getting business and getting noticed as a small business. If you own a small business and either don't feel SEO Marketing is a good investment, or are simply not applying the strategies, you're missing out on a huge source of free advertising.

Although Search Engine Optimization is key to becoming popular in your geographical location, business owners are usually not skilled enough or have the know-how to do SEO on their own. This is where an SEO Consultant comes into play. An SEO Consultant will help small business owners put together a strategic internet marketing plan that ensures success online, or if one person is not enough, business owners can consult an Internet Marketing Company. Here are some tips to filter out the bad and choose the best company for your business needs.

SEO Reputation:
When researching SEO companies, you must check the reputation of the company. There is a practice known as 'Black Hat SEO' and many companies employ this. Black Hat SEO is an unethical form of SEO, that, while sometimes successful, will more than likely get your website blacklisted by major search engines.

Top Ranking on All SEs:
Beware of this promise. Companies that promise visibility or top rankings on ALL search engines for the length of your seo contract are lying to you. This is not possible as search engines, especially Google, are changing the way they rank websites all the time, and usually, without warning. Websites will move up and down all the time in rankings based on these changes, so guaranteeing a spot is unethical. An Ethical Search Engine Marketing Company will let you know that results are NOT guaranteed and your place will fluctuate with how the search engines are reading your website.

SEO Specialties
Legit SEO Companies will list their specific specialties on their website. The best SEO Companies will supply their website visitors with SEO strategy articles, blogs and other information. You should ask for recommendations from trusted online sources such as Google Maps, Yelp and other reviewing sites or ask business connections when looking for an Internet Marketing Company or SEO Strategist.

The Cost of SEO
If you're not sure what the average cost is of hiring an SEO Company or Consultant, it's best to do some initial research. First, know that SEO is not a one-time thing, and it will typically take a few months to see significant results, especially if your website has never been optimized before. Your second step will be to check out your competition: are you going up against a competitive niche? If so, it may be better to hire an Internet Marketing Company over a single SEO Consultant. Thirdly, remember that your cost will be based on how aggressive you want to be. If you want more backlinks, more social media activity, more articles and blogging, you're looking to spend around $800 on the low end. If you're hiring a huge company, be ready to pay at least $3000 a month in Online Marketing. Integraphix prides itself at being one of the less expensive SEO Companies in Chicago and you're more likely to be in the $300-600 range for monthly SEO marketing.

The most important thing to remember is this: You have a business to run, and if you're trying to become popular online, it is less expensive to hire a SEO Company than to lose business by doing it yourself. If you are unable to apply the correct strategies on your own, you might be hurting your SEO in the long run and it will be more expensive to fix and optimize you correctly. Be sure to do your research, ask questions, and ask to see their work. If they're not willing to share, they're probably doing some shady things behind closed doors.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

Are No-follow Links good for SEO?

I've recently seen a lot of discussion on the value of no-follow links for SEO. Half of the Internet Marketing community is saying there IS value to them and the other half thinks there is absolutely no value. After some research, I've found compiled some information on backlinks and their do-follow/no-follow relevance to SEO.

No-follow Links: Is is still valuable to get them when you can? Social Media sites are mostly no-follow. Is it worth the reach even without the SEO value?
With some research, I've come to this conclusion: Yes, no-follow links are definitely important. There is much debate on no-follow links and as an SEO, I don't believe there needs to be so much concern over getting do-follow links. If a link is from a strong website with high PR such as Huffington Post, or Forbes and can pass traffic, then I say go get it! Search Engines are paying a lot of attention to Social media websites (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) so why bother with worrying about nofollow/dofollow when they're still incredibly important to have. If you're trying to build a brand and rank on Google, it's best not to obsess over whether a link is good for SEO - think about what is good for your brand.
Nofollow links to not pass search engine value for Google and Bing - Yahoo might be another story. But you CAN have a link on Wikipedia or even Google's own blog and it won't count, but that doesn't mean it's not incredibly valuable.
Websites with lots of links, even if they're no-follow links, can still send traffic: meaning that the link is still clickable or live. This can still help with increased website traffic, leads and potential conversions and perhaps even encourage others to link to your website with a do-follow link. The point of all the Social Media links is about creating awareness and a following for your product and services. This awareness about your brand will lead to more link building from other sources and develop a larger community for your brand. So do no-follow links matter? Yes they most certainly do.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Investing in SEO for your Website

Is your website getting all the traffic you'd like to see? Often, good web design is not enough. To draw visitors to your site, an SEO campaign may be necessary.

Search engine optimization is not a do-it-yourself project. SEO experts use a collection of sophisticated tools to dive into the details of your website to make it more attractive to search engines, and build sophisticated strategies to improve your search engine rankings. But not all SEO firms are created equal. Here are five red flags to watch out for when comparing SEO firms for your search engine optimization campaign.

1. Aggressive timelines. If a firm promises high rankings and big results in the first 30 days, beware. True search engine optimization takes time to achieve. This sort of short-term gain usually requires a flurry of activity in promoting your site online -- and can often get you banned from Google or other search engines indefinitely. A reputable SEO firm will talk about results over months, not weeks.

2. A one-time shot. Just as you change your product or pricing in response to the market, good SEO requires changes in strategy over time. A short-term project may create short-term activity, but just because your site is ranked #1 today doesn't mean it will be tomorrow. Good SEO firms provide constant monitoring and updating as required to see search engine success over the long term.

3. A "trust me" approach. Your SEO efforts are only worth as much as the results. If you're writing a check each month for services and aren't sure exactly what's being done on your behalf and what impact that's having on your search rankings, find another SEO firm. Most solid SEO firms will provide reporting regularly (we provide reporting monthly) and will keep you informed of how their work is progressing.

4. Tactics that harm your business reputation. No matter how much search engine rankings are worth, they're not worth damaging your business reputation. Some more questionable SEO practices can end up with your company information associated with unsavory areas of the web -- including adult content, organizations that you may not support, and websites that sell or in other ways profit from private user information. SEO firms that play fast and loose with your good name should be avoided.

5. Difficulty connecting with a real person that understands your business. SEO firms that use a cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all approach will likely miss great opportunities to promote your website and add to visibility because they don't adequately understand your customer, your products, and your business goals. If someone wants to sell you an SEO package without an expert consultation which considers your wider marketing strategy, run.

Reputable, effective SEO firms can double or triple the number of visitors to your website over time, and they can make the difference between a winning web strategy and a site that's beautiful but unused. Before selecting an SEO firm, ask questions, get a detailed proposal, and make sure you understand what you'll be getting for your money.

Integraphix is a full-service Chicago website marketing company, developing and promoting stunning websites and dynamic mobile applications for large corporations and small businesses nationwide. Our SEO experts can design a search engine optimization campaign that grows your business without busting your budget. Contact us to see how investing in promoting your website can pay off over and over again.

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SEO Marketing on Tumblr: How to Optimize your Tumblr Blog

SEO Website Optimization for Tumblr and other Social Media Websites

Tumblr could possibly be the most addictive social media and micro-blogging platform behind Facebook and Twitter. This is especially so if you're looking for an easy to use (and awesome) photo/text/link blogging website. It'll be even easier to get addicted when you read this post. Also, please take not of the fact that Tumblr Corporate heads have plans in to expand significantly next year. If you're in it for internet marketing and seo...that's another story.

While fun to use, and wonderful to look at, Tumblr isn't the best blogging site out there to support an SEO campaign. Wordpress and Google's Blogger still reign supreme, while Tumblr rarely ranks well on search engine results. We're not saying that it will never rank well, but typically it does not rank without a few tweaks and tricks. What are these tips and tricks? Read along grasshopper:

Optimize your page Titles
Here's the great thing about Tumblr: their customization allows you to modify the HTML of your website and of the posts themselves. HTML...that's scary right? Well it's not that scary as it involves the simple change of a title tag of the post so that it contains the title of your post, a summary and perhaps even your blog name. This way, the information you want will show up in search results and help your content gain exposure (instead of just your blog name) and in turn help your search engine optimization.

Add Meta Descriptions
Don't know what a meta description is? It's the short paragraph seen  under Search results in Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Google is the main search engine most people should focus on, and they display no more than 160 characters for each description, so try to keep your meta description under that. If you don't create a meta description, Google will pull one from your website for you and you may not like the outcome! It will be a random accumulation of 'spidered' words. This is not good for SEO or the likelihood of someone visiting your website.

Submit your XML sitemap to the search engines
Tumblr gives users the ability to generate what's known as an XML sitemap. That's very nice because it gives you the ability to tell the search engines that you have amazing, organized and well thought out content.

Customize the URL of your post
Do not post anything before altering the URL of your blog post. It's in the lower right hand corner of the post/reblog page. Alter the URL so it is SEO-friendly - also remember add tags so people can find your post.

Optimize your Photos
This means more than just adding tags through the tumblr website itself. Make sure you are uploading pictures that are named properly, and have the appropriate alt text description.

Get going on Social Networking
The reason Tumblr is growing and becoming more successful is the social aspect of the blogging platform. Users can talk to each other much like Facebook and Twitter though their blog posts. This doesn't mean you don't have to get on Facebook or Twitter and use it religiously. Tumblr has a feature where you can connect your blog to Facebook and Twitter, so that whenever you post on Tumblr, it will automatically repost to Facebook and Twitter - saving you time, and building your following.

More questions on Social Media Marketing with Tumblr, Facebook and Twitter? Contact Integraphix for a FREE Internet Marketing Analysis and start your SEO campaign today!

-- Marketing Company in Chicago

Integraphix, a Chicago SEO Company serving the USA and Beyond!

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