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How to Use Bing to Advertise

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Bing Ads is an advertising platform used to display ads on the Bing network including bing.com, yahoo.com, and aol.com. Smaller affiliates like duckduckgo.com and slickdeals.net also fall under this umbrella.

Ads show up on Bing when a visitor searches just as they would on any other search engine. The top and sides of the page are premium real estate, and you want to be sure people notice you first by making your ads relevant.

How Bing Advertising Works

Bing shows ads relevant to a visitor’s search based on the terms used. Searching for “hardware store Kansas City” will return ads for hardware stores in Kansas City. Yes, that’s quite obvious. However, you may not know that whenever someone conducts a search, Bing gives ad placement to the highest bidder. Just because you have an ad on Bing, doesn’t mean people will see it.

Bing makes money off of the ads businesses place, so if you outbid your competition, your ad is more likely to appear. However, Bing only gets paid when someone clicks an ad. That’s because you only pay Bing when someone clicks on your ad.

This is why relevancy matters. If you operate a hardware store in Dallas, your ad will never appear using the search terms above no matter how much you bid, because no one would ever click on it. They need hardware stores in Kansas City, not Dallas. Showing irrelevant ads profits no one.

On your end of the ad, make sure when a visitor clicks your ad, it sends them where they expect to go. If your ad promotes drills, send the clicker to the drill page of your hardware store website, not the page with pipe fittings.

Advantages of Bing

Bing has a host of advantages that are similar to other search engines. Using proper keywords, you get your business in front of people when they need it, increasing your conversion rate. You only pay if your ad works, so you don’t spend money on useless advertising, and you’re less likely to exceed your budget by placing bids for the maximum you’re willing to pay.

You can also track your engagements on a dashboard, showing you how many people saw your ad, how many times they clicked, and how much you paid for each click, giving you the ability to segment your future ads based on what worked and what didn’t.

While Bing doesn’t have the same volume as Google, this proves to be beneficial. Fewer businesses advertise on Bing, meaning less competition for you, better ad positioning, lower cost per click, and higher quality conversions.

Cost of Bing

A pay per click model determines how much advertisers pay for ads. You only pay when someone clicks your ad, but how much you pay depends on how much you bid. You pay different amounts based on keywords. Niche keywords in small communities can cost less than $0.20 while popular keywords in big markets cost more than $20.

Bing’s keyword planner suggests bids for your ads, so you have an idea of how much you need to bid for your ad to appear in someone’s search terms. You choose how much you are willing to pay based on how much you stand to profit from acquiring conversions. $20 is worthwhile if a new customer means $500 or more to your business.

Factors to Consider

Switching to Bing from Google doesn’t mean you’ll lose your previous campaigns. When you sign up for a Bing account, you have the option to import these from Google AdWords. You can then use them to run similar campaigns and benchmark which service is better for your business.

Diligent keyword research tells you which terms have high volumes and low competition. Bid on keywords with purchasing intent. If someone searches for “best toilets to buy,” it’s likely they plan to buy one soon. If they search for “best toilet repair near me,” you don’t want your hardware store ad to appear. That is unless you also offer toilet repair services.

After selecting targeted keywords based on your product, service, or location, you can also choose your match type. This allows you to select how closely you want your keyword to match the user’s search when your ad appears. Broad matches will look for searches containing synonyms of your keyword, whereas exact matches will only show up when someone searches for that exact keyword or phrase. Broad matches have the potential to appear on searches that aren’t relevant to your business, so you may have to narrow your match type over time after some careful study.

After several months, you should review and optimize your ad to improve future results. You have visibility to keyword impressions so you can refine and change as needed. Remember to remove negative keywords from your campaign.

Bing has a variety of targeting options you can use after you evaluate your initial campaign. You can run A/B tests, increase your visibility on weekends where you see more traffic, and bid higher on demographics like age or gender.

Check out our done-for-you system for more ideas.

 

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How Link Building Affects Your Marketing Strategy

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I get it. You want to be discovered. And search engine optimization is part of that. But it’s easy to stuff keywords into your articles or blog posts anywhere to get visibility. There’s more to online marketing than that. There are specific techniques you can employ to get the best out of your marketing strategy without affecting the readability of your content.

You have to use keywords the right way, or you won’t get noticed like you thought you would. Google and other search engines are smart. They value quality over quantity and can identify keyword density and its effectiveness.

Techniques

Engaging online with people who already interact with you and your website promotes your website to relevant audiences. By showing an interest in your followers, you present yourself as genuine and sincere, and you can provide a more meaningful and customized experience for them. Use a blog to accomplish some of this. You can create sharable content by being unique and original. Linking to other blogs or external sources shows that you foster a community of sharing within the industry and value the opinions of other industry experts.

Case studies highlight individual clients and their success stories. It helps other potential clients feel like they have second-hand experience with what you do and makes you more trustworthy. Present these case studies in a visual format like a video showcasing a client interview, or ask your clients to write a quick testimonial you can post on your site.

Pump out news articles to your readers that are relevant to your industry. Keeping up-to-date on the current trends or industry struggles will always benefit you in ways other than direct marketing. Sounding knowledgeable when you speak with clients will get you farther than almost anything else will.

Online promotions or contests engage your social media followers, inspire friendly competition, and offer freebies that everyone likes. This is one of my favorite SEO marketing techniques because it gets the online community buzzing about your brand, no matter what sort of freebie you’re offering.

You should always use these marketing techniques safely and effectively. Ethical business practices and principles are at the core of everything you do. Using these techniques effectively can help you improve your marketing strategy performance and maintain integrity.

Link Building

Search engines are smart enough to recognize quality over quantity, so link building is an essential marketing tool that you shouldn’t overlook. Acquiring links from education websites and other trusted industry experts can drastically increase your rank on any search engine and make you easier to find.

I would even go so far as to say that it’s impossible to rank on Google or any other search engine without links. Here’s why:

  • Links are Google’s #1 ranking factor
  • Links define the entire internet
  • Links point to other great content that deserves to rank as well
  • Links transfer power and trust, hopefully back to you
  • Links help people discover your site

As I mentioned above, blogging is a great way to start link building. Linking to relevant external sources in your blog helps to build credibility with other experts in your industry. By sharing blogs on social media sites, you begin to develop inbound links as well.

Linking to other blogs on your site sometimes generates a ‘return the favor’ sort of attitude within the community, and simply linking to other people’s work can build a good linking foundation. You can also create organic inbound links by guest blogging on someone else’s site.

Researching the links your competitors use is a useful tool for knowledge building. You can learn a lot from the way your competitors link to other content. You gain valuable insight into their strategy, the keywords they are using, and what they feel is important. Using this information, you can build better links to outrank them.

Calls to action with internal links keep people on your site and help them to discover more about you. Writing content that links back to yourself does many things. It creates a backlink, and it promotes other products or services you offer. You can use these tactics to upsell as well.

Providing your users with genuine, useful content comes in many forms. It is critical that you understand how to use keywords effectively because keyword density impacts the readability of your content. Link building techniques provide structure and understanding to what you publish. Check out our done-for-you system for more ideas.

Firefox Extensions for Small Business Marketing

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While the browser wars are far from over, there remain only a few significant players in today’s business world. Everyone knows that Internet Explorer comes with Windows, and the running joke is that it’s “a tool used to download Google Chrome.” Speaking of Google’s powerhouse browser, the Mountain View web client has a chokehold on the browser market, owning nearly sixty percent of the market.

Still, there are other alternative browsers which provide unique and innovative options for small business marketing. Firefox, for instance, includes add-on tools that Mozilla has developed which can help a small business keep up with larger and faster-growing markets in today’s online industry. Below are just a few of the best Firefox extensions for small business marketing.

Shareaholic

This social media sharing aggregator allows businesses to integrate all platforms into one unified application. If you have a message you want to get out, but don’t want to take the time to post it to each platform, Shareaholic provides the answer. Businesses can share content on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and StumbleUpon all with the single click of a button.

Firefox Blogging Extension

The beauty of the blogging extension provided by Firefox is that it allows for marketing and promoting through the use of an online blog. In today’s marketplace, blogs are more important than ever in their use to attract visitors to your site. These integrated blogging tools make it easier to promote and provide greater visibility to your blog. It also helps with optimization of links, tags, and metadata, along with many other marketing features.

SEO Quake

In the world of online and internet marketing, everyone knows how crucial SEO can be. SEO Quake is an essential Firefox extension which allows users to set a variety of SEO parameters which can track data and provide valuable information on how a website is performing. Through its simple, yet intuitive interface, SEO Quake can offer a detailed report relating to each SEO parameter.

RiteTag

As a small business, no one needs to remind you of the importance of the Twitter hashtag. This powerful feature can drive traffic to your site when used appropriately, so it is essential to keep a weathered eye on growing trends or tags. RiteTag provides the opportunity to see how well a hashtag will perform before being used with your tweets. It can also suggest alternative tags, or point out when a hashtag is overused. Use this tool to create the best tags when marketing your business, creating campaigns for social media, or reaching out to others within your industry.

SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb is a fantastic Firefox extension to use to measure your performance against the competition. This plugin goes a long way toward showing your company’s strong points along with areas for improvement. You can view your global, national, or local rank, receive traffic overviews, determine where your traffic is coming from, and which sites are referring yours most often. SimilarWeb is a handy extension for small business marketing.

Bitly

This Firefox extension provides many features that are beneficial to small business marketing. Users can create customized, shortened links, view analytics, and share the link easily on social media. Additionally, Bitly has a component which allows for bundling similar links, which can make shortened links easier to find and manage. It will also notify you when the link you created reaches a specified number of views.

Remember, just because a browser doesn’t command the same market share as some of its competitors do, does not mean that it doesn’t offer key features, extensions, or plugins that can create marketing and social media benefits. Install and play around with some of the more interesting ones, and you’ll be sure to find the extensions that work best for your company. Check out our done-for-you system for other useful advertising tips.

Six Strategies for Gaining Instagram Followers

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As Instagram continues its meteoric rise in both monthly user base and saturation metrics, it makes sense for businesses to get on board. Statistics show that engagement rate on Instagram is much higher than either Facebook or Twitter. Not making Instagram a part of your marketing campaign is a mistake your business cannot afford to make.

With that in mind, here are a few strategies on how to grow your Instagram following:

Post Daily

Get into a regular flow when posting to Instagram, but don’t inundate your followers with content. A few times a day is probably the ideal number. Quality content combined with consistency will do more to drive up your number of followers than flooding their feeds will.

Share on a regular basis so you can discover what works best for you and your business. Provide creative, engaging content, and you’ll be rewarded with not only more supporters, but followers that are interested in your content.

Promote User Content

A great way to promote user content is to take fantastic content from other creators, and put it on your Instagram account. Be sure to give credit to the original producer of the material, though. Show off the unique and uncommon stories your users have to tell, and when you do, make sure to add hashtags that point back to your business.

Photo Contest

Photo contests are a fun way to share your brand while gathering photos from followers under a theme. Be sure to get involved in the contest yourself while sharing it across multiple platforms. But don’t be in a hurry. Allow users time to hear about the contest and participate.

Make sure the rules are clear and concise, so you avoid confusion with the contest. If you’re unsure of how to proceed, find a business to partner up and double the audience.

Understand Hashtags

Hashtags are an essential part of Instagram, and using the right hashtag can make the difference between a post that falls flat and one that shoots to the top of your followers feeds.

To determine the appropriate hashtags to use, peruse the content of those similar to your own. You can search for and record hashtags that are relevant to your brand, then use them in your content to drive traffic to your business.

Filter Selection

Instagram filters are fun, but also a little confusing. Which ones should you use to drive views and engagement? Pay attention to the responses you receive depending on the filter you use. Some tend to lead to more views, while others may contribute to a higher number of comments. Play around with them and find the ones that work best for your business.

Engage

Really engage with your followers. A list of all the greatest tips and tricks will be helpful, but they’re never going to compete with rolling up your sleeves and getting dirty on the platform. Be intentional about leaving thoughtful, engaging comments, like photos that strike you as meaningful.

Find new people to follow on a regular basis, interact with them, and respond to their questions and comments. Doing so will result in natural and organic growth for your Instagram platform.

Gaining followings on other social media networks can feel like you’re beating your head against a wall, but that doesn’t have to be the case with Instagram. Create engaging, quality content and connect with your followers.

The way you engage with your followers will have a direct impact on how your account increases. If you’re willing to help others, word will spread, and growth will occur. For additional help, you can check out DFY’s lead generation system.

Virtual Assistants-Taking Your Online Marketing to the Next Level

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In this era of the Digital Age, more and more people are turning to the Internet to increase their marketing exposure.  The problem?  Every day the ways to use online marketing seem to grow exponentially.

In one blog post at Wordstream.com, they offer a guide to the top 99 Online Marketing Tools.  You read that right, 99!  And, they are only listing the TOP 99.

From Clothing Boutiques to Real Estate Agents, Social Media Marketing has become a necessity to keep up in today’s marketplace.  So, as an entrepreneur or small business owner, how do you find the time to run your business, increase your productivity, have a personal life, and keep up with the ever-evolving online marketing field?

The short answer?  You don’t.  You hire someone to do it for you.  Enter the Virtual Assistant (VA).

Who are Virtual Assistants?

Virtual assistants are home-based, skilled professionals, offering businesses, and entrepreneurs support remotely instead of within the traditional office setting.  Communication is usually done via email, phone, or even face to face services like Skype.  This alleviates the need to provide additional work space at your office or other business location.

Don’t Virtual Assistants Just Provide Basic Admin Support?

Back when remote assistants first came on the scene, the majority of their services focused on administrative tasks that were similar to those of an executive assistant or secretary.  They were just done from home.  However, with the growing number of VAs available, their offerings now run the gamut, and thanks to the incredible increase in popularity of Social Media Marketing and other Online Marketing, specialists in that area have become easier to find, and are extremely beneficial to have working with you.

In fact, just a few years ago, the University of Florida created the first Bachelor and Masters degree programs to provide accredited education in Social Media Marketing and other schools followed quickly after that.

A Few Things to Consider When Hiring a Virtual Assistant

When you choose to hire a virtual assistant the first thing you’ll want to determine is whether you want them to be an employee or a self-employed contractor.  There are pros and cons with each arrangement.

When you hire an employee, even a remote one, you’ll need to provide any benefits your other employees receive, based on their employee status, ie: Full-time, Part-time, or hourly, as well as add them to the regular payroll.  A real estate agent in the northern California area reported he has a full-time person who’s only job entails maintaining all Social Media postings for active

If you choose to work with independent contractors or a freelancer you will have none of those responsibilities.  But, you will have little control over what hours they work or be able to demand when they can be available.

To be designated as an independent contractor, an individual must be free to determine how the work will be done to completion, free from the client/company’s control.  The contractor is responsible for the final product only as far as the terms of their contract requires.

Where Can I find a Virtual Assistant?

Just as the internet provides the opportunity for the concept of a VA to work, it also provides locations, and even platforms to easily find, hire and pay your VA.  Here’s a short list of websites that provide freelancers and businesses a way to find each

  • 24/7 Virtual Assistant
  • Assistant Match
  • eaHelp
  • Fancy Hands
  • Freelancer
  • FlexJobs
  • People Per Hour
  • Red Butler
  • Time Etc.
  • Upwork
  • Virtual Assistant USA
  • Virtual Staff Finder
  • Worldwide 101
  • Ziptask
  • Zirtual

Hiring a virtual assistant will leave you with more time and energy on your hands to focus on the other aspects of your business.

For additional info on running a successful online business click here for our done-for-you system.

Increase Your Marketing Exposure with Amazon’s FBA

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Most of us know by now that Amazon is the largest online retailer.  People often go directly to Amazon when considering a purchase before searching anywhere else.  And, when they do implement a search, Amazon’s extensive marketing and SEO techniques usually bring them to the top of the search results.

So, why not take advantage of their marketing to promote your own products?  Amazon has provided a platform for you to do just that.

So, what exactly is Amazon’s “Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA)?”

With FBA your products are stored at Amazon’s fulfilment centres.  They do the packing, the shipping, and the customer service. PLUS, products sold can be eligible for Amazon Prime’s Free Two-Day Shipping, Free Shipping, and other benefits provided directly by Amazon.

Additionally, many buyers choose products by FBA sellers instead of merchant fulfilled sellers, even when the price is higher, because they know it comes with Amazon’s reliability.

Additionally, you can now automatically market your products across most of North America.  When you register for an Amazon.com seller account, you can enable FBA for products you list to be seen on Amazon.ca and Amazon.com.mx.  This allows you to sell on Amazon’s marketplaces in Canada and Mexico, reaching even more customers.

Referrals-How Amazon’s FBA Increases Your Marketing While They Sell Your Product

I’m sure if you’ve made a purchase on Amazon, you’ve noticed the area at the bottom of each product page headed “recommended purchases.”  What you may not have realized, is that they include FBA products in this section as well.  This means a buyer on Amazon gets exposure to your product as well as theirs, increasing your exposure.  And, Amazon affiliates will also link buyers to your items through blog and social media posts.

What It Will Cost You.

You will be charged for storage space and the orders they fulfill. The cost of shipping is included in your fees, with no extra charge for Amazon Prime’s FREE Two-Day Shipping and FREE Shipping on eligible orders. Fees for optional services may apply.

Upload your product to the FBA platform, finalize your listing and then box up your products and ship them to an Amazon distribution centre.

Once your items arrive and are scanned in at the distribution centre, they’re live on Amazon.  If items don’t sell within the pre-set time period, you can either pay storage fees or have them returned to you at your expense.

As with any new addition to your business plan, there are pros and cons to weigh before making a final decision.

Pros:

  • Enormous Customer Base-As one of the largest online retailers, Amazon’s users are looking to shop.
  • Credibility and Trust-buyers are comfortable going to Amazon.
  • Excellent Support-Everything from inventory tracking, tax collection, and credit card processing is already set up with Amazon’s platform.

Cons:

  • Fees-These start at a minimum of one dollar and can go as high as 25% of the product’s price.
  • You’re a Commodity-On Amazon you’re mostly a commodity. This means there will be other merchants under cutting your prices. Plus, you’re competing directly with Amazon for any products they sell.
  • No Control Over Branding-Unlike on your own site there are fewer options to promote your own brand.
  • Lack of Customer Loyalty-Customers are finding your products due to their loyalty to Amazon, not you.

A Note on Keeping Your Own E-Commerce Website.

At this point, you may be thinking that this could replace your own e-commerce site.  Many experts recommend keeping your existing site as well.  The primary reason being, when you sell on other platforms, you don’t actually own your shop.

They will reserve the right to manage your product listings, and not always in a way that is in your best interests.  This could even include preventing you from selling within a certain category if they can make more of a profit selling the similar items in-house.

Over all, Amazon’s FBA platform is an excellent opportunity to increase your market exposure, sales, and distribution without having to increase your own storage and shipping facilities.

For more information or, to get started, visit Fulfillment by Amazon now.

5 Elements that Are Impacting Your Organic Click-Through Rates

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Click-through rates are a key metric involved with optimizing Pay-per-click ads (PPC). Click-through rates are not interchangeable with PPC or paid search ads.

You probably think that your organic search results are simply a consequence of your current ranking position. However, you have much more control over this. Click-through rates can be optimized to return a massive number of extra clicks.

Ads that gain more click-share will generate leads that will ultimately increase sales. While there are several ways to boost your organic click-through rates, here are 6 things that can be changed right away.

Keyword Selection

When it comes to increasing your organic click-through rates, picking the right keywords is the place to start. Your keywords are directly related to the relevance of searches, and they will determine how you frame titles for blogs, articles, and descriptions.

When picking keywords, it’s important to focus on highly relevant ones that relate to the product you’re selling or the content you’re writing about. If you’re writing a blog post about a certain product, choosing words that are commonly used in the industry are ideal.

The more the keywords in your blogs and ads relate to those of your business, a user is more likely to click on it after searching your keyword phrase.

Captivating Titles

When creating a title, you must have two goals in mind: to grab the reader’s attention and to entice them to click your link.

SEO is more than just rankings. Different skills in marketing, such as copywriting, can go a long way. A title that captures your audience’s attention is one of the ways to increase your click-through rates for the SERPs.

Always keep the keyword in the title, but save everything else for intrigue. A good title possesses a self-interest and newsworthy component. Titles that convey information quickly and spark curiosity in the searcher will having people flocking to your website.

Meta Descriptions

A meta description is the snippet of words that appears under a search title that basically summarizes the content of the page.

After the title, meta descriptions are one of the first things a searcher will see when they are looking at search engine results. Here is where creative copywriting comes in once more to attract clicks.

A meta description that will increase click-throughs should contain

  • Your chosen keyword(s)
  • Related phrasing to your chosen keyword(s)
  • Clear and concise wording about your topic

A searcher should be able to get the gist of what the landing page is about based off the meta description.

Call to Action

Content that has a strong call to action can convince a reader to come back to your content or even look through more. Relating your posts with “read this” or “click here” broadens the scope of your content and their search.

With a call to action, searchers will spend more time on your website, rather than on the search engine. With more content and keywords, you have that relate to your product of service, you can increase your organic click-through rates.

Table of Contents

When a person is scouring the SERPs, articles that contain a table of contents will include a “jump to” link. Rather than search through several results, searchers will gravitate towards the “jump to” link for convenience because they know your website has something relevant to their initial search.

Sitelinks

It is true that you don’t have control over the assignment of Google’s sitelinks. However, you can control which sitelinks you don’t want to be seen when a person searches your keyword phrase.

You can easily go into the search appearance settings of your website and “demote” the links that you don’t want to appear.

When a searcher is scrolling through the SERPs, it’s very easy for them to associate the sitelink with your brand name. Websites with an easy to use interface and clear navigation will have better sitelinks.

Taking control of how your website fares in the search engines is essential to internet marketing success. To learn more about how you can increase your organic click-through rate, or to find out more internet marketing tips, click here for our done-for-you system.