As you might imagine, we field a lot of questions here. Below are some of the most common we receive, if you don't see your question answered here, feel free to ring us or shoot us an email and we'll do our best to get you the information you need to make a smart decision on how to market your business.
We have a no-pressure policy to Fielding questions - you will not chased with phone calls, door knockers, or email.
Q: Do you make websites?
A: No we do not make websites. However we do work with some wicked talented web design firms in the Boston and Providence areas that do, check them out HERE. If you already have a web design/development firm, no prob - we’ll work directly with them as well; this is how most of our work is done.
Q: Do you work on any website?
A: Absolutely! (See above)
As a general rule, custom HTML sites as well as CMS platforms like WordPress and Squarespace websites (like ours) are most common and offer the most SEO options/capabilities while low-cost options from Wix, GoDaddy, Web.com, and others offer the least.
TIP: If your website is on WordPress, check out our fave list of plugins HERE.
Q: Doesn't my website Already Have SEO?
A: Maybe - maybe not. With an average of 550 changes to just the Google Search Algorithm every year, SEO has become quite specialized. That said, many website firms do apply some degree of SEO to their work, you can run a quick check of your SEO by using our online audit tool - it's free, click HERE.
Q: Does Every Page of my Website need search engine optimization?
A: In most cases, only the primary pages of your website require optimization. We like to see at least 6 pages to a website with the primary pages having at least 225 words of text (because of this). Home page, contact page, and primary service/product pages are most typical.
Q: Do you offer menu SEO & digital marketing pricing?
A: Nope – and the reason is quite simple. Your business isn’t like any other business, so why would you settle for a cookie cutter offering that isn't unique to your specific business needs?
Some of what goes into SEO pricing include businesses past internet marketing actions (failures & successes), the number of locations, marketing radius, current asset collateral, goals, and required work to attain those goals are unique to you. We offer sustainable strategies custom tailored to each client need.
Q: What marketing elements are most likely to move the needle for my business?
A: Internet marketing is hyper-competitive, regardless of the size of your business. For most businesses a combination of Keyword Research, Website SEO, and Citation Building provides a solid marketing foundation. Advertising on AdWords, Bing Ads, and social media advertising come next. This is the typical strategy for our clients.
Q: How long does SEO take before it works?
A: This question is the one we get most often. And the answer isn’t simple; there are many factors that come into play. The short answer is – 9-12 months on average.
In our 19 years' experience, we have noted that the timeframe most businesses see any action for their efforts has depended on common factors regardless of their industry. Some of these include: how much work is needed, is the site currently penalized, how many technical SEO errors need to be sorted out, how responsive the client is in performing any requested due-diligence, and the scope, quality, and activity of other-than-website assets and activities. In addition to being a solid strategy, AdWords advertising is a great way to boost online visibility in the short term while waiting for SEO changes to take root.
Q: What is meant by “search,” “organic search,” and “paid search,” aren't they all the same?
A: “Search” and “organic search” are the same, and they refer to the results page for a search engine query (called the SERP – Search Engine Results Page). You do not pay for organic search visibility. In addition to your website showing up on the search engine results page, citations (see below), blog posts, images, video, news, documents, maps, and some social media could also populate on the page if the optimization is done correctly. “Paid search” refers to paid advertising that is seen on the search engine results page, like Google AdWords or Bing Ads.
Q: SEO Or Social Media – which will likely drive more leads to my business?
A: SEO, hands down will drive more traffic to your website and if your website is optimized to capture lead conversions – generate more leads. Social media is a much better tool for storytelling than your website and engage with prospects and clients, but it typically has a very low return-on-investment (ROI) quotient than organic search and paid search. Think about the last time you searched for something to purchase online or locally – did you use a search engine like Google or a social media channel like Facebook for your search query? For most people, the answer is Google (search engine).
Q: Why do you need access to run an AdWords campaign?
A: A successful Google AdWords campaign requires three things to make it all work. Geographically targeted keyword research, Ad copy (the actual ad text) that includes the strongest keywords for your business, and contextual relevance between these two things on the website page the ads are pointing to. We therefore often recommend making changes to your website page to complement the focus of your AdWords campaign.
Q: Is posting on Social Media a must-do activity for my business?
A: Absolutely not, even though the media sure makes it sound like you do. The deciding factor for investing (time/money) into social media (SM) postings should be directly correlated to where your buying audience is. If your prospect audience isn't likely to be on SM, spend your marketing resources where you’re likely to gain a lead. That said, pay-per-click advertising on social media could be targeted to find people with an interest in what you sell (service or product). There’s a yuge market potential in social media advertising, don’t wait until people find your SM page – reach out to them actively through targeted social media marketing (SEM).
Q: Is advertising on Google AdWords and Facebook expensive?
A: It doesn’t have to be. “Expensive” however, is a subjective term – what’s costly to some is affordable to others. As an example – a daily budget of $3-$5 is a great starting point for most small businesses. Few advertising firms work with smaller budgets, but we do.
The typical business will see the greatest amount of website traffic from Search Engines, Paid Search Advertising, Referral Traffic (citations), Paid Social Media Advertising, and Content Marketing (which includes social media) – in that order. A pay-per-click advertising campaign, by definition means you only pay for advertising leads when someone clicks on your ad. Working with a firm who understands how to properly set up a local, regional, national, and international marketing campaign is vital as the settings alone can make all the difference of looking at advertising as an expense or investment. Experience pays dividends here, and with 19 years under our belt, we’ve got more of it than most Rhode Island advertising firms.
Q: How do I know all this stuff is working?
A: Short answer – reporting (and knowing what those numbers mean). We offer an affordable online dashboard that integrates Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools (new name: Search Console), Bing Webmaster Tools, AdWords, and Social Media reporting on one screen. Better still, this tool converts often confusing and complicated numbers into easily to understand charts and graphs. If you do not measure it – you can not manage it. We’ve got reporting covered.
Q: I already know the keywords for my business - will you work with those?
A: Absolutely, but only after we conduct our internal keyword research. All internet marketing/advertising hinges on your website, digital asset, or ad showing up for a searcher's query. As long as that remains word-concentric, keywords will continue to be the foundation of all digital marketing. To deliver the highest level of service and performance, we always start each project by conducting comprehensive keyword and competitive research. Only after this work is done will we consider adding a client's keywords to the mix.
Q: How important is Having a mobile website And mobile marketing?
A: If your prospects are searching for what you sell (products & service) using smartphones and tablet computers to find you (not so much the latter) - having a website that will scale to the user's device will provide the best user experience (UX). The better the experience, the more likely they are to engage with you. From a search engine visibility perspective, there's little data to show that having or not-having a mobile site will impact your rankings on search engines. But as mobile usage continues to grow, it's only a matter of time before search engines only display mobile-friendly sites for mobile device searches. Kind of makes sense doesn't it?
As for mobile marketing, targeted citation building which includes map optimization is a must for any brick and mortar business. To that end, we have the geek distinction for being Google, Waze, Foursquare, Facebook map editors. We can also edit Apple and GPS maps as well (we're just not in their editors group).
Q: Do you work with other design/marketing/advertising/PR firms?
A: Yep, about 70% of the daily work we do is for clients of other firms. Most of it are direct-partner relations, but white label is also available. Typical outsourced services include keyword research, on-page SEO, citation building, custom schema code creation, and PPC management.