> If your small business isn't yet online and actively engaging in digital marketing then here is 7 reasons why you should be.

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What is SMO? Social Media Optimisation Explained - Simply

Social media optimisation (SMO) is the use of a number of social media outlets and communities to generate publicity to increase the awareness of a product, brand or event. (wikipedia)

SMO is married in with SEO in that what you do on social networks, whether that’s on Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Forums or other sites, can and does have a direct effect on your website rankings in Google.

When employed effectively social media can be one of your greatest assets for improving your website’s organic search results. Through linking and connecting users in various online networks, you extend the reach of your business and brand which increases opportunities for people to link to your website’s products and services.  This contributes to what we in the SEO world call off-page SEO

Furthermore, social media optimisation helps connect all of your social media accounts in a cohesive, consistently branded network that points your potential customers to where you want them to go, whether that’s your website, another social channel, your blog etc.

As an SMO specialist we employ a strategic, multi-point process to build your successful SMO foundation, boost your SEO, and drive more potential customers to your site.

What does SMO involve?

SMO is an ever evolving and changing set of tasks and optimisations to be performed regularly and consistently. But here is a very basis list of some of the items that fall under SMO.

  • Optimising your social platforms to meet channel best practice.
  • Using relevant hashtags (for Instagram and Twitter) to improve your content discovery.
  • Creating content that is relevant to your target market and that encourages them to engage with (share, comment, watch, read and co-create).
  • Integrating and connecting all your social channels with your website and with each other.
  • Making it easier for users to share you content from your website.
  • Allowing users to socially comment on your products from your website.
  • Engaging with other people’s and organisations content to stay at the forefront of people’s attention.
  • Track your content performance.
  • Employ paid media to gain greater reach and engagement with your content.

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Should you be doing SEM?

Search engine marketing (SEM) is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) primarily through paid advertising. (Wikipedia) 

This question can only really be answered by having a better understanding of your particular business, your marketing goals and where you are in your digital marketing plan.

There is no point in spending money to drive qualified traffic (clicks) to your website if…

1.     Your website looks like a dog’s breakfast and it’s unclear what your business is about and what users are to do when they get there.

2.     You don’t know what you are trying to achieve by using pay-per-click (PPC) marketing.

a.     Do you want to increase sales?

b.     Get email sign ups?

c.      Encourage video views or information downloads?

d.     Drive more customer leads?

It’s extremely important to get your foundations laid correctly first – that is that your website is following best practice website design, is mobile optimised, has a clear message that speaks to your target audience and is search engined optimised.

Once you have all these ducks in a row, then you may want to start driving more traffic to your web pages to achieve your desired goal.

Why would you engage in SEM if you’re already doing SEO?

To use a fire analogy SEO could be considered the logs and SEM (PPC) the flame that creates the heat. You need SEO as a foundation to ensure your website is working in its optimum.

SEO could be enough for you, if you’re already indexing well within the Google SERPs for all your top keywords. But more than likely it will take you quiet a bit of time to index on the first page of Google for many competitive and long-tail search terms and so you may want to launch a Google Adwords campaign with a lot of search terms (keywords) that are relevant to your business so you’re your website becomes visible within the top pages of Google almost instantly.

How much does SEM cost?

This is like asking the old age questions “how long is a piece of string?” The answer depends on a number of factors;

  • Your media budget?
  • The competitiveness of your chosen keywords
  • The size of your target market
  • Whether or not you are concerned with having 100% share of voiceor not. That is to say whether you want your ads to show 100% of the time that someone is searching for your keywords.
  • What the management fees are of the agency/ person running and managing your account, if you’re having someone else do it for you. You can see our prices here.

What is important to note is that you only paid Google (Adwords) when someone clicks on your ad, hence this type of marketing being referred to as pay-per-click (PPC).  It is for this reason that you want to make sure that they keywords that you have in your Adwords account are relevant to your business, brand, products and/ or services as you don’t want to be paying for clicks on irrelevant search terms.


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How to think like an SEO expert?

SEO is not something that you do once and then forget about it. It’s a way of thinking that should be ingrained into how you go about creating content for your website and social media channels. Here are just a few of the core things that should help you on your way. 

  • Start with your target marketing in mind.
    • Who are they, what do they like, where do they live, what do they do, how do they read, what are they interested in?
  • Create a website and content that meets the needs and wants of your target audience.
    • Make it user friendly – can they easily find the information they are after?
    • Is  the information easy to digest, share and engage with?
  • Conduct keyword research to understand how your target audience searches for your products and services.
    • What problem are they trying to solve.
    • Create content (blog posts) that addresses these questions, queries and needs.
    • Build content around these keywords.
    • Link tha t content back to your products and services.
  • When you’re creating content make sure to use your keyword effectively in your headline, and throughout your paragraph.
    • Make sure your page URL uses your keyword (should be the same as your page name)
    • Make sure your image file name has your keyword in it and that you have created image alt tags accordingly.
    • Update the meta-tags to include your keyword(s).
    • Create a meta-description that includes your keyword(s).
    • Correctly use  your header tags (H1-H6) throughout your document. Ie. H1 for your headline, H2 for the sub headings, H3 for any call-outs and paragraph plain text for your main content etc.
  • Share your content with your audience and customers across your social networks, via email and in relevant forums etc.
    • The more people read and share your content linking back to your website the more Google thinks your content is valuable and will reward you with a higher page ranking.  This is where your social media strategy comes in.
  • Keep your website content fresh
    • The more content that’s regularly added to your site the more Google sees you as being up-to-date and it will reward your site accordingly within the search results pages.

If you’d like an SEO audit or someone to just handle all this ‘work’ for you, then we would be more than happy to help you. You can find an outline of our services and prices here.

What Should You Know About SEO

Should You Be Concerned With Google Algorithm Changes, Updates And Refreshes?

Should You Be Doing SEM?

What Is SMO? Social Media Optimisation Explained

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