There’s no quick fix, or “one and done” solution when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO). You have to be prepared to play the long game to see the full advantages of SEO when developing a site — and it’s worth it to see your site rank highly on search engine result pages.
That said, there are some methods that will give you a quick boost. Shift more attention to the most significant ranking factors and tactics that will give your site the ability to rise to the top of the search results this year.
Choose a Responsive Design
User experience is a big deal these days. Google loves to serve its users the best results possible. If your website isn’t easy to use on a mobile device, you’re going to suffer a setback in ranking. Think about it, have you ever landed on a site where you had to zoom in to read the text and scroll side-to-side to read all of the content? This was most likely the desktop version of a website. It was made for larger screens and doesn’t reformat to fit on different screen sizes.
Responsive sites will resize images and reorganize the blocks of content according to the size of the screen. If you want to test whether a website is responsive, open up a web page on a desktop or laptop. From the full screen, shrink the window by clicking and dragging, and you’ll see the sidebars move, the navigation and header will take on new positions and the content and images will line up differently.
Mobile search volume accounts for more than half of the total searches made online (see chart below). A responsive, mobile friendly site is no longer an option, but a necessity, when it comes to providing an enjoyable user experience.
Create Keyword Clusters
Making a list of keywords that your ideal audience would use to find the content you’re offering will also boost your SEO ranking. Plug each keyword into a keyword tool to generate additional ideas. Assess the best options for keywords to include in your content strategy by grouping them into pools based on search intent. You’ll notice that many of those keyword options will be subtopics large enough to write an entire blog post about, in which you can provide more detailed content optimized for a related keyword.
For example, if you own a home improvement business, a central page on your site would be kitchen renovation. And because there are so many choices to make when renovating a kitchen, you could then go into depth and create a new page for every option, from counter tops and backsplash tile to faucets and refrigerators. When you’re planning your content, structure the website to feature central pages that are optimized for the most central, competitive keywords and most important aspects of your business.
Publish articles on the related subtopics in full detail in order to provide as much information on those major keyword topics, to show your expertise in your field, and to demonstrate authority within the content of your site. Google looks for this as partial evidence of your status as an expert in your niche.
Google also loves when there is a distinct organizational structure. By linking the subtopic posts to your major product pages, you signal what pages are most important to your site by creating a keyword cluster.
Optimize Your Content
On-page optimization enhances the likelihood of your page being ranked for your target keywords. Avoid keyword stuffing and place your keywords strategically. For instance, use your target keywords in the front end of your titles, and keep your titles under 60 characters or they will get cut off in the search display.
Place your keyword in your URL. The most effective URLs are those that are under 5 words and summarize the title or content on the page. Keywords should also be included in the meta description. Using your keyword in the beginning of the meta description will improve the click-through rate for users. As will placing your keyword within the first 100 words in the first paragraph of your content, and using keywords and keyword synonyms in the subtitles.
Use structured data markup whenever possible. If you can provide a rich snippet, you may get a boost in the position your site is displayed.
Make Your Pages Quick and Nimble
With a heavy emphasis on user experience, page speed can make a huge difference in how your site performs. If you’re an ecommerce site, it becomes extremely important because every second your page takes to load will cost your business money from lower conversions.
mPulse Mobile Case Study on Page Speed Vs Conversion Rates, Image source: https://digitalducats.com/page-speed/
Test your mobile page speed here. You can improve your site speed by reducing image file sizes, using plugins, and using a content delivery network to give your website additional page speed.
- To reduce the size of your images use Kraken or Smush.
- W3 Cache is one of the most popular WordPress plugins that increase page speed, but you can decide for yourself by choosing one from this list.
- Choose a CDN (Content Delivery Network) to reduce your pages load time from a list of options here.
Get Other Sites to Link to You
Establishing credibility and authority is a necessity to be competitive in search results. Backlinks are a powerful way to prove that your content is credible and authoritative because essentially it is being endorsed by the websites that link to you. But stay away from paid links, or any link scheme used to manipulate ranking in an underhanded way. Unnatural linking will lead to penalties and should be avoided altogether.
One approved method of link building is to become a guest author. There are guest posting sites in every niche and having knowledge about your business is all you need to create an article that can be submitted to a site for publication. It may take a few weeks to get a response, and you may need a few submissions before receiving acceptance. Get into a routine for guest posting to build backlinks as fast as possible.
Ask People to Share Your Content
A social network is a priceless asset for expanding your audience and getting more traffic to your website. Build your network by being active on the social media site that has the most impact on your business.
Install social sharing icons on your site and include a call to action to get the most shares. A retweet study revealed that content with share icons received 4 times as many retweets with the phrase “Please RT”.
Although there is a lot to put together to achieve a first page result, it’s a long-term game plan. Start building your website with SEO in mind to give your site the best chance at the top positions in search results.
#1948 How to teach your kids to build their own businesses
Joining me as somebody who I’ve been talking to via email for a while, and I’ve wanted to have on here and I’m so excited that he said yes to an interview.
So many entrepreneurs that I’ve interviewed had little businesses when they were kids. They’re usually so freaking proud of then that they can’t stop telling my producers about it. But so many of the stories ended with the business getting shut down by the school, by a teacher, or by the principal.
Well, today’s guest said, “What if we create a way to encourage kids to sell and create businesses? We’ll teach them how to do it and we give them everything that they need.”
Scott Donnell is the founder of MyFirstSale, which gives kids the life skills and confidence
to sell their products in a safe, friendly online environment.
For a special listener discount, you can go to MyFirstSale.com/Andrew or hapbee.com/Andrew to see more.
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What It Really Takes To Make A Million In Your Business
(You can watch the video below)
So many of us have this goal to make a million in revenue in our businesses… I used to dream so much of reaching this milestone back in 2009.
This is when I created a challenge for myself called “Mission To Make A Million In 365 Days”.
And whilst I did reach the million mark a few years ago, that first challenge I set for myself was a total and utter fail, not because my ideas were bad, but because I was focusing on completely the wrong things.
It took me a few years from 2009 to figure out what it really takes to make a million, and it’s such an important shift that I think holds so many entrepreneurs from ever getting to that milestone.
So in this week’s episode I wanted to share with you my journey to making a million in my business and some key things I learned along the way that I know will be so helpful if this is a goal that’s on your list too.
In this episode I share with you:
- What happened by day 65 of my “Mission To Make A Million In 365 Days” challenge and why I decided I needed to set myself a different challenge after that.
- The discovery I made in 2011 about what it really takes to become a successful entrepreneur and the new challenge I set for myself with this shift in perspective.
- The changes I made that helped me bring to life a business idea I had been mulling over for 3 years (that’s how FEA was born!).
- The things we need to do every single day to become the person we need to be to create success.
- The questions you really need to ask yourself as an entrepreneur and the commitments you need to make so that you can hit your financial goals.
I hope you love this episode and that it helps you to have a few A-HA moments!
I also wanted to let you know that I’m doing my final live workshop before the baby arrives and I’d LOVE to invite you to join me for it!
In this workshop I’ll be sharing:
- The 6 BEST ways to make money online – that everyone can take advantage of!
- We’ll be identifying what stage of the business journey you’re at and what steps to take: are you The Dreamer, The Starter, The Hustler, The Grower, The Scaler or The Visionary?
- How I was able to go from being a dreamer to building a million-dollar business – the core steps that got me here and how you can do it too.
- The fundamental things you need to be doing every day (that most people don’t even think about) to break through and create the success you want.
The post What It Really Takes To Make A Million In Your Business appeared first on Female Entrepreneur Association.
How I scaled my business to $47.5k revenue at 90% profit margins in 13 months
Long time lurker, but I wanted to share with you my experience in the last 13 months of building my biz (I quit my job at the end of June 2019 and immediately started working on my company).
So as the title implies, we’ve been able to grow our company to near $50k revenue a month at essentially 90% profit margins (proof here) (I included that since I know r/entrepreneur has a hard on for cash flow and hates when people talk about revenue without profit haha).
Anyhow, this post isn't going to be just jerking myself off, I'm just going to tell you exactly what I did in terms of client acquisition, strategies, tools used, hires made, and everything else to give you insight on how I made this happen.
And also, I don't want to give anyone this false expectation that hitting nearly $50k a month is normal to do in a year. My UNFAIR ADVANTAGE is that I'd been in sales and digital marketing for 7 years prior at startups. I already knew (more or less) how companies scale from 0 to a million, because I literally was the director of growth at a company that went from 0 to 2.5M right before starting this recent company of mine.
That being said, one thing that should make you feel good is that I had less than 7k startup capital needed. This was totally bootstrapped from savings I had from my previous role. And to date, I've spent 0 money on paid ads, brought in 0 additional funding, had no one come in to take equity in exchange for help. This is totally done grassroots.
Anyhow, I run an online program which combines private coaching, a group mastermind, supported by a learning platform that teaches my clients how to implement certain tactics and strategies.
I have both retainer and project clients, but typically customer LTV is between $5 to $7k. So it's a high-ticket productized service.
So with that being said, this probably won't be relevant at all if you're doing stuff like e-comm, brick and mortar, the "sweaty startup" type thing. This is ONLY going to help if you're selling an expensive online offering (imagine online consulting, maybe agency services, perhaps a more pricy SaaS/software product). I'm not offended if you just skip this post if this no longer relates.
The reason why this is possible is because I spend under $750 per month on client acquisition per month (my costs consist only of some software tools I use to manage biz dev + a little bit of payroll)
On the fulfillment side, I primarily do coaching/consulting + manage my learning platform. This productized service model is very scalable and costs me nothing out of my time doing the coaching + the costs for the tech that support my learning platform (under $100 a month).
Anyhow, with that being said, I wanted to show you the 4 distinct stages of growth I experienced that helped me scale.
Stage One – 0 to $7k per month
So, in the beginning, I was totally reliant on Linkedin cold outreach.
First step was optimizing my profile so it was not just a janky online resume, but more like a landing page (with sales copy, testimonials, content, etc).
That way, if people visited my profile, they would clearly get what I do and how I help.
At the time, I was serving primarily SaaS companies and agencies, and I figured Linkedin made the most sense.
I set up an automated campaign that reached out to 100 connections per day, everyday (minus weekends).
Now, I think it's important to be a bit cautious with automation.
The two main concerns are breaking Linkedin's terms and getting your account frozen, but also having spammy reachout which annoys people.
With the first problem, I solved it by using a really specific tool.
First off, the tool is NOT a Chrome extension (since those are the ones that get you in trouble). Also, it was a private access only tool (which I was lucky enough to get invited into). The team who built it doesn't actually market it at all, meaning it's user base is much smaller than the other tools which are actively growing and marketing, so it really flies under the radar.
The second problem is (in my opinion) the more important one. How to avoid being spammy.
The way I got around it is that with Linkedin, my automation is only used to connect and start dialogue. I don't do ANY selling or pitching with the pre-built multi-step campaigns I have. The sole purpose of the outreach is to get the prospect to just respond to me.
I do this by asking interesting questions, commenting on industry trends and challenges, relating my own experience in the space, etc.
Because of my conversational approach, my campaigns did quite well. Here is just one of the many campaigns I built, but the numbers are quite similar through my other campaigns.
The thing is, the campaign's outcome is that the prospect responds. No meeting has been booked yet. Meaning I still got to take it from there to a call booked.
So what I try to do is engage in dialogue, establish rapport, identify fit and prospect problem alignment, and then I pitch.
Here's an example of the conversation flow that I use to take a dialogue through to meeting – broken up into a few sections since the convo is too long to screenshot at once.
So when you replicate the initial automated conversation campaign, those 100 new connection requests turn into between 10 to 15 conversations (as shown in the metrics above).
And then, by manually managing the DM's, being personalized, I typically turn a 25 to 33% of them into meetings booked in the calendar.
So this usually meant I was booking 3 to 5 calls a day.
At that point, it was just jumping on the call to close the deal.
Stage Two: $7k to $16k per month
So Linkedin was great, but there was a very clear ceiling in terms of pipeline generation because you can't send more than 100 connection requests per day (or you'll get in trouble with Linkedin).
With Linkedin alone, I was having a hard time breaking five-figures per month.
So what I did was I started messing around on Facebook groups, and sharing content.
Facebook groups are really cool because it's just a collection of like-minded people hanging out, sharing advice, and asking for help.
So I went and joined around 30 FB groups that I thought were a good fit in terms of audience.
It was as easy as typing in "SaaS", "Growth Hackers", "Consulting and Agency Owners", "High-Ticket Coaches", and letting FB point me to the most engaged groups.
Then, what I did was start sharing helpful content in those groups.
The key here is you CANNOT sell or pitch. If you do, the admins of those groups will remove your posts.
So instead, I just tried to help, and avoid talking about my business altogether.
This is just the preview, but each of these posts are about the length of a blog post (1500 words-ish).
And although they are written like a case study, they DO NOT sell my offer or even talk about what my product is at all.
Most people don't really write this long on FB, but that's why I think people really engage. I'm documenting my process as much as I can, and people tend to see value with that.
Naturally, what happens is people who are interested will start adding you as friends, DMing you, and being very open to conversations.
Facebook added an extra 15-ish meetings every week on top of what Linkedin was doing.
I actually found this to be easier to sell than on Linkedin, since I was approaching people on Linkedin totally cold.
As soon as I started doing this, I never went below five-figures per month again.
Stage Three: $15k to $29k
So the problem at this point was actually that I had too many sales meetings in the calendar from Linkedin and Facebook.
It's a good problem to have, but I was probably spending 4-5 hours a day managing my DM's, content distribution, engaging with people to book meetings.
Between working with clients, doing sales calls, and the rest of that work, I was working 80 hour weeks and working through the weekends.
It wasn't sustainable.
So my main goal here was to start removing some of the workload.
First thing I did was a created a webinar which helped me pre-sell my offering.
Prior, I was doing ALL my sales on a phone call, which often meant I'd need to jump on multiple calls to build enough trust to close.
But with a webinar, I could actually make it part of my buyer flow that they consume the webinar first, which will teach them my concepts, the things I help them with, etc.
This made it so that people entered my call already 50% of the way ready to buy.
My sales cycle immediately went from on average taking 2 to 3 calls, to now only taking 1 to 2 calls.
Another thing I did was really start using my Facebook group.
Technically, I began my own Facebook group even in stage 2, but I wasn't properly utilizing it.
But the cool thing about a FB group is it acts like an email list, on steroids.
It's the best way to nurture prospects, keep them warm, prime them for sales, etc.
But unlike an email list, it's a real dialogue. There's a community feel. It's more interactive. You can use a larger variety of formats (FB livestreams, text, video, etc).
Over time, I built nearly a 2000 person FB group where I consistently engage, add value, and once in a while promote a product launch.
You can see here I've highlighted a couple things.
First, the group is large because I promote it, BUT ALSO because FB's algorithm will just drive new people to your group organically after you reach a certain size and engagement (1000 is the sweet spot). So it really is free traffic.
Second, I can sort my content so people can self-select the stuff they want to learn about, and consume. It's a better user experience for them.
Finally, I can tag my own content, funnels, and products in the announcements, which help me passively get meetings booked and deals won.
So this simultaneously makes it easier for me to close deals, but also generate meetings.
And FINALLY, I also hired a person to manage my appointment setting.
Before, I was getting bottlenecked because of all the messages and DM's that I had to do manually.
So to get rid of that, I brought in someone to book meetings and converse for me.
Now, to do that, I actually needed to create a really good script which would help my setter appropriately mirror my voice and way of speaking.
And importantly, I needed them to get the "flow" of the conversation, and how to disqualify poor fit leads and bring good leads into the calendar.
So to summarize, the webinar and pre-sell campaign helps me shorten sales cycles.
The FB group helps me passively generate more leads while nurturing and warming up my leads (also shortening sales cycles).
And then my appointment setter helps offload my time spent on booking meetings.
Now I can spend more time with clients and on sales calls.
This system is what helped me scale to around $30k per month.
Stage 4: $29k to $47.5k
So this stage was actually pretty simple.
All I did was increase my pricing and restructure my offer.
To be honest, the entire time, my offer was underpriced at $3-$5k.
I was just scared of charging more because I was fairly new in my business and didn’t want to get told “No”.
But by this point, it had been more than a year serving my clients.
I knew what I did would provide results, since I now had so many testimonials and proven use cases.
Once I felt confident in the value of my offer, I just started selling it for between $5 to $7k.
And lo and behold, my closing % didn’t change at all. We were still able to win the typical 5 to 8 clients a month, just at a higher ticket.
In fact, not only did it not hurt my closing %, it actually helped me bring in better clients who were more motivated to work with me.
One warning I do have for you though is if you increase your pricing, it better be justified by the quality of your product.
I didn’t make this decision till I was 100% confident people would get an ROI.
And EVEN THEN, when I increased pricing, I spent several weeks just working on the product to upgrade it so I could give my clients a better experience.
Anyhow, by doing this, I increased my monthly revenue significantly without generating any more leads than in my prior months.
So, I think the biggest thing is just that systems and process are really important.
Doing things manually doesn't scale.
But people misconstrue that as "organic doesn't scale" because organic is thought to be quite manual.
What I've learned is that you can build processes that take the manual components in organic and remove them.
But I do want to set a MASSIVE disclaimer. Yes, I manage to do this in 13 months. BUT, I would not call myself an overnight success story.
Prior to building my company, I was an enterprise sales rep for 2 years. Then I was the director of sales at another startup for 2 years. And then I served as the head of growth at yet another startup for the year following.
Without those 5-6 years of developing my skillset in marketing and sales there, I wouldn’t have known how to do what I do now. Those years of working at companies were a prerequisite to my growth today. Me saying 13 months is in reality 7 years when you think about how long it took me to acquire the skills I needed to build a profitable company.
Anyhow, feel free to ask any questions below!
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