marketing visuals blog (1)

Marketing Visuals: Why They Matter in Your Content

Marketing Visuals: Why They Matter in Your Content

Visual content has become a huge part of our lives, whether we realize it or not. In fact, according to Google, images account for over 90% of web traffic. And, with the rise of social media, visual content is becoming even more powerful. According to HubSpot, 80% of consumers prefer to watch videos rather than read articles. Imagery plays a big role in marketing because it engages audiences visually. It can also convey information about your brand, company, or product. And even influence buying decisions.

“Visuals are powerful tools,” says Mark Traphagen, CEO at Visual Insights. “They communicate ideas, emotions, and values.” There are three main types of visuals: text, graphics, and video. Each type has its advantages and disadvantages. Text is great at conveying information, but it lacks emotion and personality. Graphics are effective at capturing attention, but they lack depth and substance. Video, however, combines both elements and provides a powerful medium for storytelling.

But creating great visual content isn’t always easy. The key is finding ways to create compelling imagery that engages viewers. Here are four reasons why visuals should be part of every piece of content you share.

Marketing Visuals help us remember things.

When we watch a movie or TV show, we don’t usually pay attention to the dialogue. Instead, we focus on the visual elements. This makes sense since our brains are wired to process information visually. Visuals are powerful tools for marketing. They help us remember information better, by engaging our brains, and helping us connect emotionally with brands. If you want to create memorable images, then you need to take into account the psychology behind their effectiveness.

Marketing Visuals make things easier to understand.

Visuals are great at helping us understand complex concepts and even help us remember that information better. Visuals can convey messages much faster and more effectively than text alone. A picture says a thousand words, and makes it much easier to quickly grasp information without having to read through long paragraphs or pages. As marketers, we need to create compelling visuals that effectively convey messages to make it easier for our audience to understand.

Marketing Visuals drive sales conversion.

The way marketers communicate has changed dramatically over the last decade. Visual Marketing has become a powerful tool for businesses looking to connect with their customers. From Facebook ads to Instagram stories, these tools allow brands to tell their story through images and video. When combined with other elements such as copywriting, graphics, and design, they create powerful messages that compel consumers to take action.

Marketing Visuals form better connections with your audience.

Visuals are important because they engage customers emotionally. They tell stories, convey messages, and help customers visualize your brand. In other words, they help you connect with them emotionally. In today’s digital age, consumers want to see stories told visually rather than read text. They also prefer watching videos instead of reading articles. Connecting to your audience in a relatable way is the most compelling way to drive them down your sales funnel.

Visual content is everywhere these days. From social media posts to blogs, from websites to emails, from ads to infographics, we see pictures and videos every day. And they don’t just tell us stories, they also sell things. That’s why marketers turn to visual content to boost their brand awareness and increase sales. If you’re struggling to create compelling marketing visuals, reach out to us at X3 Marketing today.

6 Reasons Why Having a Blog Will Improve your SEO

6 Reasons Why Having a Blog Will Improve your SEO

6 Reasons Why Having a Blog Will Improve your SEO

The concept of blogging has evolved tremendously alongside the evolution of the Internet. These days, organizations that have a blog on their site, receive 67% more leads each month, over companies that don’t have a blog (DemandMetric). Why does blogging make such a difference in your SEO efforts?

Well, a blog (also called weblog) is an online publication that contains text, images, video, audio, or any combination thereof, in which entries are posted on a regular basis, usually daily or weekly. Blogs can be used for personal expression, news reporting, commentary, reviews, humor, satire, or other purposes. A blog is a great way to keep visitors engaged and interested in what you’re doing. Here are 6 reasons why you should have a blog on your site

1. To Help you Rank

Blog posts help search engines find new pages on your site, which means they’ll be able to index them faster. If you want to rank higher for certain keywords, then having a blog on your site is essential for your SEO strategy. Your blog is full of original content, and you can fill it with target keywords and search terms that will help you get to the first spot on the Google Search results page. Beware of keyword stuffing, which is jamming in too many SEO keywords into your blog article, as Google will dock you for that. Having high-quality content on your blog can get your organic search results to the top of Google’s search engine algorithms.

2. To Be More Trustworthy

Domain Authority (DA) is Google’s way of determining how trustworthy you and your site are. A high DA means that the owner of the domain has done some work to make their site reputable, such as blogging about valuable content on a regular basis. By being an expert or thought leader who regularly creates content regarding a specific industry, you become more trustworthy, and Google will rank you higher for customers searching for relevant keywords related to your industry. The more trustworthy you are, the easier it is to secure client conversions and spend time further developing your robust content strategy.

3. To Start Getting High-Quality Backlinks

Link building is the practice of increasing incoming links to your site, with the goal of improving organic rankings. Backlinks are links that point directly to your website. When someone has inbound links to your website, Google sees how popular your page is and ranks it accordingly. The more blog pages you have (and the more authoritative content), the more likely you are to have a piece of content that someone else wants to share through an external link onto their own site (or blog). Don’t forget how important internal links are, too! Start searching for keyword phrases and keyword terms related to your industry, and see who’s already creating online content on credible sites, so that you can find relevant links for your own content creation.

4. To Satisfy Google

Google is the biggest search engine out there. The first thing Google looks at when ranking websites is content. If you have relevant content on your website, then people will find you easily and your search engine rankings will be higher. You should write unique articles and blog posts that answer questions and solve problems. Plus, Google loves blogs. In fact, they love them so much that they actually give higher rankings and more search volume to sites that have blogs than those without. So, if you want higher search rankings in the results and the ability to reach a broader audience, make sure you have a blog with fresh content.

5. To Reach your Ideal Reader

Your blog is a great place to share information about yourself and what you do for your target audience or ideal client. Blogging gives you a chance to tell stories. Stories help people relate to you and your brand. Plus, they allow you to show off your personality and expertise. A blog lets you connect your helpful content to others, and gives you a window to nurture their customer journey. Having long-tail keywords optimized within your blog content, will help make sure that customers who Google Search for you, will find your blog article. By writing about your passion, you’ll open yourself up to potential customers, and this organic search traffic is free, making it all the easier to achieve your marketing goals.

6. To Have the Strongest SEO Out There

Blogs are a huge opportunity to improve SEO. When you write content for your site (and your target audience), you’re telling Google that you’ve got something worth indexing. And when you link back to other pages on your site, you’re letting Google know that you’ve got valuable information for readers on those pages, which boosts your search engine rankings. Beyond the overall positive user experience of being able to peruse your blogs, having a strong SEO marketing blog strategy, is the best way to boost conversions.

Having good SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is how your customers are going to find you when they go into Google to start their search. Good SEO takes time to build, but your blog is yours to create, and you can use it however you like for your marketing efforts. You can use it to promote your business, build relationships, and even get some free traffic. If you have a website, then you already have a blog. Start blogging today, so that you can boost your SEO, and get more leads to your business. And if you’re not sure where to start, X3 Marketing Group can help you dominate your competition online, as your partner in digital strategy search engine optimization.

The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You | X3 Marketing Group

The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You

The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You | X3 Marketing Group

The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You

When it comes to good SEO, data rules the day and defines strategy as well as the measurement of ROI. However, a local SEO company that knows a particular market is invaluable. Today we’re going to take a quick look at the importance of a local SEO company and how working with one – like X3 Marketing Group – can affect your bottom line

Local SEO Company

How does it benefit you? It works in different ways for every business. You get the ability to know your local competition. You get to understand what your own strategy looks like when compared to the competition. You get to know where to direct your message in order to garner the most attention.

Also, the local SEO company has access to a wider range of data that will show you where you stand in terms of keyword competition, competitive keywords, and much more. This is invaluable in terms of understanding what you’re getting for your money. A local SEO company in Northglenn, Colorado for instance knows that their city is completely surrounded by the cities of Westminster and Thornton. With the population density in these cities, someone like X3 will understand that simply marketing to one city will miss out on a huge audience of potential customers.

The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You | X3 Marketing Group
A local SEO agency will understand the local community better. They are aware of what the website ranking is and how they can improve their rankings.
The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You | X3 Marketing Group

Marketing with Data

A local SEO company has analyzed the typical customer profiles and made predictions based on these metrics. These predictions are based on the assumptions that a company will spend a certain amount of money to improve the position of their site in Google search. By employing an effective local SEO strategy, the company will get the following benefits:

Improved ranking in local search
More visibility in local business directories
Increased reviews from local customers to drive trust
If the local SEO company works with their clients to drive strong social signals, the company will have their customers ranked better (higher) in search results and social mentions.

The importance of local SEO for your business

While many small businesses take on the responsibility of doing their own SEO, data and measurement aren’t their forte and they have no idea what type of numbers to look for. A local SEO company can provide a myriad of data to both inform and implement your SEO strategy within the best SEO packages. It’s not just your website that needs a little boosting, but all of your digital efforts. The Importance of Having a Local SEO Company: 3 Ways It Benefits You | X3 Marketing Group Even if you’ve done your research and picked the perfect keywords for your website, the traffic you receive on a monthly basis isn’t always good. For instance, we were once looking to work with a client in Loveland, Colorado called Affordable Plumbing. On average, their website got about 500 visitors which is a good amount of traffic for a local plumbing SEO effort. However, when we dug deeper, what we found was that because of their name, much of their traffic was coming from across the country. In addition to that, the searchers which were coming to their website were simply bargain shopping and seldom actually turning into a customer. Without a local SEO company, you won’t have the local insights to help you understand the exact reason why your website is not doing well in the search engines.
FAQ's for great HVAC marketing

A Few FAQ’s For Great HVAC Marketing

Finding great HVAC marketing is a job in itself. Curious about what digital marketing for HVAC businesses looks like or where to start? We’re here to help you in…

What are the best HVAC lead generation marketing ideas?

  1. Use Local Search Engine HVAC Marketing. This is often referred to as HVAC SEO – or just simply Search Engine Optimization. A good SEO strategy will show your business in organic search results on platforms like Google above your competitors. SEO is a cornerstone of any good internet marketing campaign.
  2. Run Google Ads For HVAC Advertising. Today, many traditional advertising ideas and techniques have been replaced by laser-focused digital advertising campaigns. HVAC service companies can hone their marketing efforts to reach very specific potential customers. For instance, someone who has Carrier Air Conditioners cooling their home wants to find and HVAC business who specifically works on Carrier products rather than any old air conditioning repair company. a good HVAC PPC (pay-per-click) campaign can focus only on potential customers searching for that.
  3. Use HVAC Google Local Service Ads. This part of your digital marketing strategy is meant to truly focus on people looking for and HVAC business’ online presence that shows them as being nearby.
  4. Gather Lots Of Customer Reviews For Trust & HVAC Marketing. If you’re an HVAC business owner, by now you’re very likely familiar with Google My Business and many other online reviews. This is a crucial part of a good digital marketing plan and will show people who their neighbors trust.
  5. Publish Great HVAC Blog Content. Frequently referred to as content marketing, this is a piece of a marketing plan which can take a lot of time and energy. A good marketing partner like X3 will help with the burden of generating good, SEO-rich content to help build SEO.
  6. Use YouTube To Build Your Brand & Trust. A platform like YouTube can be used in both organic SEO campaigns as well as advertising campaigns and even in a good email marketing strategy. These videos can pick up where things like Google My Business leaves off and help establish familiarity and trust.
  7. Use Email Marketing To Build Recurring HVAC Jobs. An email marketing plan is a good way to stay in touch with existing clients and to potentially drive more business from those who already know you. This can help save on some of your marketing budget and drive Google reviews as well as connecting those same customers to your social media marketing for even more customer service.

If you are only using billboards, Yellow Pages or phone book to generate leads, you’re missing out! Click HERE to read more about our work with HVAC companies in Colorado’s Front Range and beyond.

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

What are Local Service Ads?

Google Local Service ads are another HVAC marketing idea offered by Google to help HVAC contractors reach their customers.

What are Google Search Ads?

Like traditional HVAC ads, Google Search ads appear whenever a customer types in a specific search query. The advertising which X3 and good marketing teams use are mostly pay-per-click ads which means that you – the HVAC business owner – only pay when someone clicks on an ad. VISIT GOOGLE ADS

What Can You Do With These Ads?

If you power through the tedious steps to activate your Google Ads account, you will see that these ads can help you drive qualified leads and find more HVAC jobs! Probably the best reason to use an advertising platform rather than solely SEO (or word of mouth, networking, etc.) is that you can be very focused on exactly the right prospective customers. Want so find someone in a specific zip code? Online business listings can get you pretty close but that can also spill outside of the desired location. Let’s say one of your business ideas was to market only to someone in Denver, Colorado in a specific zip code, who (on Facebook) likes horses, reads books by Dean Koontz and who speaks English and Mandarin. Ideal customers who fit that profile would be the only ones to see those advertisements making them the right (albeit, very narrow) customer base your HVAC business is looking for.

X3 Small Business SEO Packages

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is a specialized type of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that helps you reach people close to your business and service area.

What do other search engines use to list my business?

You will need to do the following if you want to enjoy the benefits that come from local SEO: Add Contact Information To All Pages: Google and other search engines use your Name, Address, and Phone Number (NAP) to list your company on local SEO directories.

What are the best ways to get more local SEO results?

Be sure you claim your listings and generate citations in the top local directories for the best results. SEO is an ongoing marketing technique which X3 specializes in. It can be the biggest bang for your buck for bringing is good sales leads over time but it is definitely more of a long-term strategy as opposed to a right here, right now form of advertising.

X3 Digital Marketing: Marketing for HVAC, heating cooling service technician leads

What are Google Ads?

Google Ads is a Pay Per Click marketing platform that allows you to tailor a unique message based and target your ads based on several variables like specific keywords, audience demographic, and geographic location.

What are the benefits of Google Ads?

Here are a few of the benefits that HVAC companies enjoy with Google Ads (AKA Google Adwords): Efficient Cost & High ROI: You only spend money when someone clicks on your HVAC ads.

How do I use Google Ads?

Google Ads offers a wide range of benefits for HVAC marketing, and HVAC contractors can use Google ads to drive more sales and calls.

What are the benefits of reviews?

As you can see, reviews are an essential part of your HVAC marketing strategy, and you can use customer reviews to show the value you offer and help customers choose your HVAC services over your competition. Online reviews such as those on Google My Business do what business card cannot; they play a major role in sharing with potential customers what happy customers (and not-so-happy customers) have to say about your air conditioning or heating company.

Abstract vector created by vectorjuice

How can I generate more customer reviews?

One of the best ways to generate more customer reviews is to reach out to past and current customers to discuss their experience. Customer relationships can be similar to friendships and can lead to more business across the board if properly cultivated.

What is blogging?

Blogging is one of the least used HVAC marketing tactics, and this means that you can use blogs to help you stand out from your competition, get found in Google, and increase trust with customers. Basically, blogging is writing long-form, industry-specific content which people can read for further information. This article you’re reading right now? This is a blog.

Bottom Line: What you should expect from a good digital marketing company.

Benefits can range from brand awareness to online sales (if you have products that are sold online) and everything in between. At the end of the day, we at X3 Marketing group pride ourselves on showing a fantastic return on investment by bringing the best HVAC leads in the door (or phone or email or social media and on and on) of your business. You should expect an increase in potential business by way of leads which you can close.

What’s the next step toward success with your online marketing tactics? Reach out to us now!

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

4 + 2 = 

X3 Marketing Group: Do I need a business website in 2021?

Do I Need A Business Website in 2021?

We’re going to get into the “Why?” of this question below but first, let’s get the main answer out of the way:

Yes, your small business definitely needs a website. And it needs it yesterday. 84% of today’s consumers think a website makes your business more credible than companies who only have social media profiles (themeisle.com). On top of that, 72% of consumers that perform a local search visit a store within 5 miles of their current location.

Does my small business need a website?

Does my small business need a website?

What's the best website builder for small business?

What’s the best website builder for small business?

How about Google My Business websites?

How about Google My Business websites?

What about those "Free" website builders?

What about those “Free” website builders?

Does my small business need a website?

As we said unequivocally above, yes. 100%. Why though? Frankly, it’s all about legitimacy and appearing above your competitors in Google Search. By the end of 2019, 97% of consumers looking for a local business did so by using a search engine and 91% of the time, that search engine is Google.

X3 Marketing Group Mobile and Digital Marketing

When we search for a local business – let’s take a mechanic in Northglenn, Colorado where our office is, for example – we’re looking for a business that is close by so we don’t spend a huge amount of our day driving to and from and we also want a mechanic who comes recommended by our neighbors and people we know.

If we search for this mechanic and there is simply a Google My Business listing which hasn’t been “claimed” by the business owner and whose information is incorrect and whose phone number is incorrect. Out of the gate, that business is losing credibility and frustrating a potential customer. In this scenario, let’s say that the customer keeps looking for a way to get in touch with the mechanic and they go digging for a website. If no website exists, the auto shop has almost certainly lost that potential customer.

When we, as an agency that provides local SEO services, work with a client the very first thing we look at is whether that small business has a website where we can drive traffic using one of our strategic SEO packages or digital advertising services. If you don’t have a website to accompany your marketing efforts, it will affect all of your online marketing plans and no amount of customer service can help if no customers can find your otherwise successful business online.

As a final point, a full 80% of online search engine usage takes place on a mobile device. If you don’t have a site at all, you’re not going to show up on mobile either.

What’s the best website builder for small business?

We’ve certainly covered this in other X3 Marketing Group articles but since HOW your website is built is almost as important as having a website at all, we’ll touch on it again. Here are some of the most popular ways to build a small business website ranging from “Free” to quite expensive, custom website builds:

Weebly: This is a reasonable way to just get an online presence but it’s extremely limited in its ability to generate leads for heating and air conditioning repair and service (or any other leads for that matter). Not good for SEO.
Wix: Similar to Weebly in that it’s a decent stop-gap while your “big kid” website is under construction with X3 (#shamelessplug). Generally speaking, there’s quite a bit of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” when it comes to online marketing and there are challenges with Wix which would make it less than ideal for reaching and engaging a loyal customer base through SEO.
Squarespace: While it’s still missing some of the SEO tools of other platforms, Squarespace is known for visually appealing websites that incorporate beautiful images on a bit of a budget. Easy to work with, it requires almost none of the technical skills that may give you pause.
WordPress: Open source and very customizable, WordPress is primarily what we build on (ahem) and makes for a solid solution. There is a world of plugins by third-party developers to make WordPress very customizable to your needs. Can be a bit sluggish from time to time if not properly optimized.
Custom: There are a couple of very important things to consider when looking at a fully custom coded website; 1. the cost will likely be significantly more than other platforms and 2. the development time will certainly be longer (typically about double) than most estimates given at the outset of a project. On the other hand, a fully-custom Python build, for example, can be fast, powerful and do pretty much everything a company of any size could need (and pay for).
In order for an agency like X3 Marketing Group to bring a small business the best local SEO services as well as giving the most bang-for-your-buck with pay-per-click and other other digital marketing and advertising methods, your website needs needs to be at the forefront of marketing efforts to effectively capitalize on a wide range of the available marketing tools.
X3 Marketing Group: Squarespace
X3 Marketing Group: Weebly

X3 Marketing Group: Wix

X3 Marketing Group: WordPress

What about Google Sites?

Speaking frankly, we wouldn’t consider Google Sites (Google My Business free websites) a true “website builder”. It can be a temporary placeholder while your website is under construction but its functionality is very limited and while it may answer basic questions your perspective customers may have, customer behavior tells use that a well-organized and visually appealing website is what causes a prospective customer to reach out. Google sites simply don’t have enough functionality.

X3 Marketing Group: Google Sites

Additionally, Google sites don’t offer the ability to have a custom domain – this means you don’t truly have your own .COM. Google’s sites instead have a long URL string beginning with “sites.google.com/yournamehere”. This means that any traffic you get isn’t owned by your business and things like social media channels will reflect this. At the outset of this article, we talked about the credibility factor of having a website and not having your own URL is a big no-no in the world of online marketing.

What about a free website builder?

We touched on this above when talking about some of the types of website builders available but we’ll expand a bit more here. Free website builders are certainly a tempting option – especially for those small businesses who are starting out and simply need a web presence. These free options often act as the hosting provider, WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) website editor and, to some degree, design company.
Most free website builders will give you some templates from which to select your website layout and even access to royalty-free, high-quality images to use. You can include functionality like a contact form. With some free website builders you can have your own custom domain with whatever domain extension you’d like (.com, .net, .tv, .co, etc.) but others will restrict your URL to being a subdirectory or subdomain of their site (like the sites.google.com/yournamehere mentioned above).

Another drawback of these free website builders is that they often require their own branding to remain on YOUR site. This is akin to handing someone your business card and it having “Kinko’s!” printed across the top.

As a marketing tool, your website helps establish and, over time, build credibility. It give people who have found you through and online review a place to click to to find out more about your business success. If it appears unprofessional and/or isn’t engaging, potential customers will leave and look elsewhere.

When it comes to websites, there are widely varying degrees of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” for sure but few (if any) digital marketing professionals would agree that a “free” website is much more than a placeholder while you grown-up site is being built.

X3 Digital Marketing Google My Business, Local SEO, Paid advertising experts

10 Ways To Optimize Google My Business Right Now

Local SEO is fundamental to small business organizations that work on a local, instead of a general level. While public SEO moves in the direction of driving clicks the nation over, local SEO organizes showing up on SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) in a particular area. Tying all of these things together is Google My Business. This system relies on showcasing your business through images, products, and marketing specifically to local leads and clients.
Growing your local SEO implies more site traffic, leads, and growth since the methods are more applicable to nearby clients’ base. By using Google My Business, a local business can compete head-to-head with huge, national companies with much deeper pockets. By working on specific local SEO tasks, you can kill the upside of more notable brands who are much more likely to market catchphrases and national recognition rather than focusing on the visibility of their local business listing.

Further, 46% of all search traffic is looking for a local business listing [SOURCE]. Without local SEO, your business could be missing out on a lot of traffic.

With all that in mind, here are the
Ten ways to optimize Google My Business for the best local SEO.

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

Step 1: Get a Google My Business Account

1. Get a Google My Business Account

Improving your Google posting (otherwise known as your Business Profile) is probably the best way to rank higher on Google Maps to gain visibility in Google Search nearby outcomes. To get access to your Business Profile to make these improvements you first need a Google My Business account related with that profile. When you give the entirety of the mentioned data in your Google My Business account dashboard, the whole of that data will be added to your Business Profile, which shows up in Google Search nearby outcomes, the Google Search Knowledge Panel Google Maps.

To improve your Business Profile on Google, make sure that you:

  • Create a Google My Business account and confirm responsibility for business (also known as “claiming” a business)
  • Provide precise and exceptional data including the correct address and phone number as well as hours of operation.
  • Include your logo, how long you’ve been in business, how your service sets your business apart, the products or services you sell, and a lot of pictures (inside and outside of your business as well as projects)
  • Encourage your clients to leave a review on your business listing
  • Respond earnestly and quickly to client reviews – even when it comes to negative reviews
  • Publish posts (reporting items, occasions, and special offers) to your Business Profile through the Google My Business dashboard.

Step 2: Create a detailed and CTA-driving description

2. Create a detailed and CTA-driving description

The description of your business that you add should be clear and should make potential customers want to reach out to you. If you’re not familiar with the internet parlance of “CTA” that means, “call-to-action” and means that you are using words in the form of instructions or outright requests to take action. The most straightforward illustration of a CTA is something like, “Buy now!” or “Give us a call to find out more!”.

The more information you can give potential customers, the better. You can tell your crowd what’s in store when they contact you or visit your location. You can also help make sure that a customer who’s not really looking for your business (we call these, “tire-kickers”) doesn’t waste your time. While it is a must that your Google My Business profile makes it obvious that you’re an expert in your field, it’s also important to let customers know – especially those who find your business in local search rankings – that you’d love to talk to them. Let that person know through your CTA’s that they can stop by or – especially during the days of COVID-19 – they can pick up the phone and speak to an actual person.

Step 3: 3. Choose the right business category

3. Choose the right business category

Categories let potential customers know what you do and what you offer. Being clear about this means that the combination of a local Google search and map results can inform shoppers of exactly what you do and how close you are to them.

For instance, if your primary classification is “Pizza café,” Google may show your business in somebody’s local search items when they look for “Cafés,” “Italian eateries,” or “Pizza.” Your class is only one of the numerous variables that can influence your local ranking on Google. Get familiar with local search ranking and how specific categories and sub-categories can affect your business.

Step 4: 4. Select the right attributes for your business

4. Select the right attributes for your business

Google My Business attributes are probably the most important details about your business that show up on your Google My Business posting and in other local business listings. They demonstrate things like payment options, amenities, accessibility, and other highlights including COVID-19 accommodations and availability.

Google My Business attributes are essential to customers, and they are critical to Google in ensuring the correct SERPs are delivered. It is a speedy and compelling path for a business owner to convey what might be essential to a customer.

Step 5: Add photos to your Google My Business listing

5. Add Photos

When it comes to local search engine rankings, there are a lot of factors which can not only affect your ranking, but also whether or not a person clicks on the link to your website above others. Probably one of the most important – especially when a business has a very visual product or service (we’re looking at you, roofing companies!) is photographs and this is where adding photos to Google My Business comes in.

In Google’s eyes, adding photos helps to show that your business is real – especially when you include pictures of your staff. It helps show off a bit of your business’ character and helps increase trust. It’s a bit surprising that Google My Business puts so much weight into pictures but, with how much rich media content adds to other platforms, it should be surprising.

Having a few pertinent pictures in your posting will help your business stand apart from the group, accomplish higher rankings, and stand out online.


CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED WITH GOOGLE MY BUSINESS!

Step 6: 6. Get clients to leave Google My Business reviews

6. Get clients to leave Google My Business reviews

Reviews on Google (among other online reviews) give essential data about your business to both you and your clients. Business reviews show up close to your posting in Google Maps and search and help your business stand apart on Google.

Asking existing clients for a review of your business is simple by sending them a short URL to visit. To get reviews on Google, urge your clients to get the message out about your business by following these prescribed procedures:

Remind your clients to leave reviews. Seriously. Be explicit and know that happy clients are often happy to share their experience. Tell them that it’s easy, fast and straightforward to leave business reviews on mobile phone or regular computer.
When a client leaves a review, respond to them. Your clients will see that your business values their opinion, and potentially leave more reviews later on. However, don’t think that all reviews are going to be good! If a customer has a less-than-great experience (ESPECIALLY if this is the case) and leaves you a bad review, you should use your response as an opportunity to find a resolution. This will show that client – and others who read that review – your professionalism and flexibility.
Check your business, so your data is qualified to show up on Maps, Search, and other Google administrations. Just confirmed organizations could react to reviews. Figure out how to verify your business.

Step 7: 7. Post to your Google My Business profile regularly

7. Post to your Google My Business profile regularly

At the very least, you should post on Google My Business at regular intervals.

A lot of businesses post once every day and have seen excellent outcomes and improved rankings. In fact, Google actually seems to defer strongly to companies that use Google’s tools (including Google My Business) frequently.

In any case, remember that the latest Google post shows unmistakably in a search, so if there is some important information or deal that you need individuals to see, it very well may be a smart thought not to have another post for the following six days. That way, that post won’t be covered behind the more up to date posts until you’re ready. Remember this when sorting out how frequently to post to Google My Business is ideal for you.

Step 8: Ask questions your clients might ask and then answer them

8. Ask questions your clients might ask and then answer them

This may seem like an odd thing to do but, if you’ve been a good business owner – and we know that businesses owned by people who aren’t fail quickly – you’ve certainly heard more than your fair share of customer questions. So, with those questions now being typed into mobile searches, local searches, searches in your zip code, etc, you have a golden opportunity to help guide potential customers to the right answers.

For instance, if you’re a pizza restaurant, you can use Google My Business to post something like:

“Does Bob’s Pizzeria have outdoor seating? Yes, yes we do! Bob’s Pizzeria has a beautiful patio with heaters for when the weather gets a bit colder. Come on in and check it out!”

Not only can this act as a valuable tool for businesses but it also serves to answer specific questions about your location which people are likely already wondering about. It also is a factor in local search engine optimization (local SEO) which search engines look for.

Things like this can be even more important during the days of COVID-19 when people are sometimes reluctant to simply find a nearby location. They want to know if a business is open, if they have outdoor seating and if they have accommodation for cleanliness measures. People don’t want to waste their time simply heading to a businesses address only to find out that they can’t – in our Pizzeria example – eat there.

Step 9: Add your products and services

9. Add your products and services

The Product and Service Editor in Google My Business is all businesses but caters more to small to medium-sized organizations. Aside from a couple of verticals, most businesses can utilize the Product and services Editor to showcase their products to potential clients.

How it works:

Recently updated items and categories show first in the Product Catalog. To feature an item, make a minor update to carry it to the highest point on the list.
To ensure all clients utilize search, check your items and add your them through the products tab in your Google My Business dashboard.
Retail vendors can use the Product Editor to transfer items to their Business Profile. To look more closely at the products you offer, clients can tap the items in your Product Catalog and product posts.
Once again, this is an opportunity to use your product posts to drive people to either buy online or to visit your business location. Remember that Google tries to prioritize local businesses above larger, national companies who are actually located near a particular location. For instance, in our earlier example of of Bob’s Pizzeria, a person may be searching for a local pizza restaurant and a national competitor miles away from their location isn’t what they want. In this way, local businesses can compete by using their local nature and their address relative to local search optimization to dominate the big boys.

Step 10: Make regular updates to your Google My Business profile including offers and promotions

10. Maintain your Google My Business profile with regular updates
Regular updates are essential to ensure that your Google my Business profile does not become out of date or stale compared to its competitors.

One suggestion that we have is to set one (or more) day a week to add content to your Google My Business profile as well as other local citations. Be sure you’re using local keywords (example: Roofing companies in Fort Collins CO) which search engines can use to establish local intent. Use these updates to share company promotions and new industry features.

If you do not maintain your Google My Business profile regularly with updates, your competitors will surpass you, and your business may lose revenue.

The Bottom Line
While we hesitate to say too broadly that consumers have become “smarter” they have become smarter consumers when it comes to searching various links for more information about a particular product or business. It’s not enough to just be a local business in a certain category – you have to set yourself apart.

Now, the “word of mouth” marketing thing is something which a ton of businesses point to as their only method or marketing. While that is certainly one of the MOST powerful small business marketing tools, it’s also an incomplete pathway to a new customer these days. In fact, if “Jenny” recommends a mechanic to someone, that someone searches for that business online 68% of the time. On top of that, if that business doesn’t have any online reviews or if their website is lackluster (or non-existent) then potential customers are extremely likely to look elsewhere.

At X3, a huge part of what we do for our clients is help them build out many different types of citations and perhaps the biggest these days is Google My Business. So, if you’ve gotten this far and you’re shaking your head saying, “I do NOT want to mess with all this stuff!” then you need to either pick up the phone and call us or CLICK HERE to send us a message. We want to help your business DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE.

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

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5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

Let’s face it, SEO can be confusing for small business owners. There is a lot of conflicting information on how much small business SEO packages should cost, the effectiveness of different approaches and how long it should take to get a local business to appear on top of Google.

While finding an SEO agency in Denver that actually produces great local seo results can be tough, it is more important than ever for a local business to invest their marketing dollars in improving their digital presence.

With the rise of COVID-19 and new business landscape, more and more people are doing their shopping and research online. Local businesses which a person finds nearby on a Google Map are those who are more likely to get business over a competitor

This means that small business owners can’t afford not to be found by potential customers on Google. At X3, we help local business owners find the perfect small business SEO package for them and guarantee results. Today, we will look at 5 ways that companies can increase their local SEO on Google and other powerful search engines.

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

1) Avoid Black Hat SEO

If it sounds too good to be true, then it almost always is. This is definitely the case with local SEO and how much it can influence a ranking factor.

In the early days of local SEO, companies could use “keyword” stuffing to jam a bunch of keywords that they wanted to rank for into any page or posts on their website to improve the desired keyword’s ranking.

Today, such shortcuts will get penalized by search engines and do much more harm than good.

If a Denver SEO agency is promising hundreds of backlinks in a short amount of time, it’s another giveaway that they are using black hat SEO efforts. Other black hat tactics include:

-blog comment spam

-cloaking

-keyword stuffing

Growing your company’s digital presence requires hard work over time. Don’t work with a company that takes shortcuts and will hurt your brand and your business and its online presence.

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

2) Claim your online business listings

There are many places online where your business can appear including social media sites, local indexes, search engines etc. A few of these, to be specific are:

– Google Maps

– Apple Maps

– Bing Places

– Google My Business (including Google Reviews)

Each listing that is claimed and correctly connected to your website provides a valuable backlink to your business and your local SEO near your zip code. Having correct information and being accessible on directories makes your business easier to find for potential customers.

Conversely, each unclaimed listing is a missed opportunity and you could have potential customers looking at incorrect/outdated information. You also could be missing out on responding to negative reviews or customer complaints.

In the early days of the internet, there were relatively few websites, so navigating the web was easy. Once the internet started to expand, however, search engines were created to allow… Source: mailchimp.com

Making sure that all of your online listings have been claimed can take a lot of time. If you have a solid small business SEO package, your agency should be helping you claim and audit all of your business listings.

Working with your agency (who should have much of this knowledge), look for local business directories where local customers may look to find something like plumbers or restaurants nearby. These directories indicate local intent to keep money in their own zip code.

Our website is listed in seolist.org – Colorado Search Engine Optimization Directory

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

3) Reviews

Ready for a crazy statistic?

According to BrightLocal, 76% of people trust small businesses online reviews as much as a personal recommendation from a friend.

Getting positive reviews means increasing your credibility and trust with your local market and prospective customers. Google My Business and other directories with your business profile are increasingly important to a person looking for your business or product.

A large amount of reviews is also a great indicator to search engines that you are an established company in your market.

Most companies do not prioritize quality reviews from clients enough. Separate yourself from the crowd and prioritize your company’s reviews.In order to have these reviews show up in a Google search, you need to be listed with a local citation. These  include many local directories or aggregators which allow for NAP citations (Name, Address and Phone number) which will guide customers to search results for a local keyword.

WHY ARE NAP CITATIONS IMPORTANT?

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

4) Focus on local link building

Getting local links to your website tells Google that you are an authority in local search for your core services or product. Let’s say that you are a Denver SEO company trying to build credibility in Denver and the surrounding areas – it wouldn’t do much good to build links in Los Angeles, California, since that location isn’t a good ranking factor for a business in Colorado, is it?

This is a mistake that a lot of companies make as they focus on industry specific links in other markets rather than building local links right in their backyard. Having a business profile and NAP citations in something like a local Chamber of Commerce is a great opportunity to find a new potential customer.

THE ULTIMATE LIST: 57 ONLINE BUSINESS DIRECTORIES

Building valuable local SEO links can be tricky as the best links have to be industry relevant and relevant locally. At X3, we help small businesses with the best local link building strategy and do the link building for our clients. Someone looking for Google local listings on mobile search are even more likely to shop with your business as mobile search knowledge becomes even more important accounting for over 80% of Google search by the end of 2020.

Most companies do not prioritize quality reviews from clients enough. Separate yourself from the crowd and prioritize your company’s reviews.

5) Creating local SEO content

Almost half of all Google search queries are searching for local information relative to where a person lives. You can make sure that your small business website shows up in the local rankings with a good local SEO content strategy.

The first step to creating great content is to come up with your local keyword strategy for Google, Bing and the other search engines. Once you have your optimal keyword strategy writing good, long-form content using the keywords in your strategy is a great way to go.

LINK: 9 WAYS TO USE BLOGGING TO RANK IN LOCAL SEARCH 

The best way to implement this is to write great blog posts around your business or service using your keywords and specifically around your local area. You can also make sure that your local ranking is further improved by keeping things like Google My Business up to date with pictures of a current project, your staff or a featured product.

Consistent, high quality blog posts are pivotal to any local SEO strategy and will ensure that you continue to stay relevant for the most valuable keywords in your market.

The Bottom Line

At X3 we are SEO professionals. It is our job to maximize your marketing budget so your digital marketing efforts can turn search engines into that put-one-in-get-two-back money machine I mentioned earlier. It’s also our job to show you how your money is being spent and provide the trust, results and clarity so you can account for each dollar and track conversion goals to see that money grow. Let’s talk.

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