Using Suggestion in Web Development, Content Creation & SEO

Suggestion and Web Design go hand in hand

Suggestion is the psychological process by which one person guides the thoughts, feelings, or behavior of another person. –Wikipedia

As the author, Siri Hustvedt stated in her quote, “None of us is immune to suggestion…” She’s right. We are constantly being influenced in some way, shape or form. When we are watching TV, we are being guided by characters and how they portray us in society. When we look at an advertisement, we are being influenced by the culture of the company, the lure of the benefits if we use the products, or how they will make us feel. When we go on our favorite social networks, we are constantly bombarded by what people love and recommend. Suggestion really is a cornerstone in society and there is no escaping it!

Using Suggestion When Developing Our Websites

Knowing we cannot escape suggestion is not a negative. In fact, we should use the power of suggestion to our fullest when we develop and market our websites.

One of the first things I do as a web designer and developer is to sit down with my clients and have a very thorough discussion about their business and industry. After all, I am not an expert at their business… they are. So what I normally do is find out everything I can about their business, what they sell, who their customers are, etc… Once I get that information, I then work with my clients on creating a website that will ‘suggest’ them as the best in their field.

Suggestion is about anticipating how the website visitor will find you, then using this knowledge to develop your website with functional promotions and marketing campaigns that will guide the visitor into clicking for more information or to buy your products and services. Suggestion starts before development and goes all the way through to customer acquisition.

Suggestion and SEO – How These Two Techniques Work ‘Hand in Hand”

Search Engine Optimization is a strategy that requires a marketer to think about how a website visitor will find you. Whether through a search engine like Google or Bing, a video platform like YouTube, a social network like Facebook, or through an article network. SEO is an important part of marketing your website so you can increase your visibility among these channels.

When I develop a website, I research the best phrases and words to use for your industry. I then use these words and phrases to create content that will jump out to your website visitors who are actively seeking a business or product, to ‘suggest’ to them that your company is a good match they should feel comfortable interacting with.

Suggestion and SEO go hand in hand. They are so closely associated, that I would not do my job properly as a marketer, if I did not know how to suggest your products or services to your customers.

Creating Content on your Website to Suggest to Your Customers They Should “Act Now”.

Your website should always contain a CTA or Call to Action. A CTA can be something as simple as filling out a contact form, prompting a telephone call, sending you an email or using a promotional code to purchase a product. Your website should always have at least one, if not many CTA’s throughout your site’s pages and content.

A CTA is a suggestion to a website visitor that if they do ‘x’, they’ll get ‘y’. Basically, if they do something, they’ll get something.

CTA (Call to Action) Examples:

  • Fill out a contact form to receive a free download or pdf catalog
  • Call a phone number to request free information or a consultation
  • Sign up for an email newsletter to receive a discount on a product or service.
  • Buy Now button on your shopping cart to incite a product purchase

The objective of a CTA is to guide your visitor to complete an action. Once they do, they become a ‘lead’. A lead is a potential customer who may purchase your products or services in the future, which ‘leads’ to a sale. (See the play on words there? Clever, right?) The point is, isn’t that what every business wants? More sales?

Suggestion Plays a Vital Role in Making Your Marketing Campaigns a Success.

As stated by Siri Hustvedt’s quote, “no one is immune to suggestion…”, she is absolutely true. But that does not mean that we should not use the power of suggestion to our fullest. After all, it’s not manipulation if you direct a potential buyer to a product or service they are actively seeking out. You are just making it easier for the customer to find you, and to reap the rewards your company has to offer.

I Work With My Customers to Make ‘Suggestions’ through Web Design, Internet Marketing and More…

If you need an internet marketing expert who understands the process of gaining a lead or guiding a visitor to purchase your products or services, contact me for a free consultation. I welcome the call or email.

Contact Lisa Caterbone, Digital Marketer in Las Vegas

Motivational Monday: Steve Jobs Quote + Building Your Web Presence

Steve Jobs Quote about Overnight Success

If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.

Steve Jobs, American Business Magnate

This quote rings just rings true. Most people think if someone is an overnight success, they came out of nowhere. But truth is, it takes a long time to become successful. How long? There’s no time limit. It’s more about the process of what you are working on, how you’ve built yourself, your products or services, your skills. Over time, they meld into one and they make you the person you are. It takes years to become who you are, so don’t feel that because you failed at one thing, one time, that you won’t be successful down the line. As Steve Jobs said, “most successes took a long time.”

Internet Marketing Success

This is also true with marketing your business. In most cases, businesses succeed by working hard, building relationships, servicing their customers, and standing by their products and services. They build a reputation and they hope this reputation helps them to attract new customers. When I consult my clients for internet marketing, I remind them of this fact. Just because you build a website today, doesn’t mean you’ll be a millionaire tomorrow. It takes time to cultivate your website. Just like any business, you need to market that website to attract more customers.

Increase your chances of success with Internet Marketing Strategies

Marketing a website consists of many layers. I am not going to go into a lot of details on these layers, but instead remind you that to succeed, you do need to remember a few key ways that will help your business expand online.

There is free marketing and then there is paid marketing. Inside both of these categories are many layers of ad types that fit either into the ‘free’ model or ‘paid’ model. Most businesses that are successful use both forms of marketing.

For this moment, I am only going to focus on two web marketing strategies that most of my customers ask about.

SEO

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a process a web marketer uses to code your website and build content that will ‘hopefully’ be indexed in the major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc…

PPC

PPC or Pay-Per-Click Marketing, in simple form, is an advertising campaign you set up inside a search engine or other website that allows you to pay any time your ad is clicked on.

Both SEO and PPC are valuable for businesses and each one serves a different purpose.

With SEO, the hope is that your website will attract customers ‘organically’ by matching your website’s content, products or services with a query that a customer will type into a search engine. SEO used to be much more simpler in the older days of the web, therefore, it’s referred to many times as ‘free’ marketing. But SEO has changed. There is a cost to set up and maintain a website to increase your chances of being visible in search engines.

With PPC, you directly bid on your ad being seen by a customer in a search engine (or other website) offering PPC advertising. Ex: Google Adwords or Microsoft Advertising. This is normally referred to as the ‘paid’ marketing strategy since you are directly paying for an advertisement on a search engine.

The point I am making, which ties in with the quote by Steve Jobs above, is that website success does not come overnight. You need both of these types of marketing strategies to build your business visibility online. What will work for you? Businesses are different and the internet constantly changes, but over time you will find a marketing plan that works well for you combining these two, and other marketing strategies ( social media, etc..) . But, the main point is… you do need time. It doesn’t come overnight.

If you would like to discuss building a marketing plan for your online business, contact me for a free consultation.

Contact Lisa Caterbone, Digital Marketer in Las Vegas

4 Website Content + SEO Ideas You Can Do During The Coronavirus (Covid-19) Downtime

Bored? Check out these 4 Website Content & SEO Ideas to do during the Covid-19 Downtime

These content marketing and SEO audit ideas can help to make a few hours (or days) go by, as well as help your search engine ranking pages.

We all know that the Coronavirus threw us a curve and forced us out of our normal routines, creating havoc on our otherwise organized lifestyles. I know some of you may have had to temporarily close down your businesses as we await the ‘flattening of the curve’ and our Governor’s issues to re-open. During this downtime, one of the best things you can do is take a look at your current website’s content and make some easy tweaks that can help your overall SEO strategy and SERP’s (pages displayed by search engines in response to a query by a user.)

  1. CONTENT UPDATES TO YOUR PAGES
    This may seem like a daunting task, but you’ll be surprised at how easy it can be if you just sit down and tackle it. Click page by page on your website and look at the copy on your pages. Look for the following:
    • Make updates to existing copy if outdated.
      Everyone’s business changes throughout the years. If you haven’t taken a look at your content to make sure it’s updated with your current business goals and services, now is a great time to make these content updates.
    • Website Structure and Navigation
      Look at the navigation links from a potential visitor’s point of view. Does the way you display your linking structure make sense and is it easy to navigate your website? If not, make some changes. You want the user to be able to come onto any page and know exactly how to get the information on the next pages they want to view. It sounds silly, but sometimes what seems obvious to you is not quite so obvious to a visitor.
    • Check all your outbound article or content links to make sure they work and are going to the right places.
      When you link to an outside website, it normally means that you value their content and want the visitor to also get value from that source. Many times a business will change their website and pages and links that were on the old site could change. If you are linking to any outbound source, click the links in your content and make sure they still go to the pages or information you want to share. If not, go to the outbound site’s website homepage and find the new link, or remove the link altogether if it no longer exists. Broken links can be very frustrating for both website owners as it looks like your site is not working properly, and visitors don’t like to waste their time clicking on links that go nowhere.

  2. ADD IMAGES TO YOUR PAGES FOR DESIGN + SEO
    Adding images to your text heavy pages can help break up the monotony of the text, and can also be a great value to your SEO. Many business owners don’t realize that adding images to your site can actually enhance your SEO. Images are helpful because they add the ability to capture attention and you can add key SEO information to the code of the website that directs search engine bots like Google and Bing, the ability to know what that image is. Remember, searchbots can’t read a picture, but they can read text. By adding SEO code to your image, you are providing valuable content to searchbots to know what that image is and the context of the image on the page:
    • Alt-Text: Alt-text is shortened for Alternate Text. It is an attribute for an image in HTML that is used to help searchbots know what your image is so it can better crawl your website and know your relevant content information. It’s also helpful for sight-impaired visitors and is used by screen reading tools to describe the images. One other key value to Alt-Text is it will display on your page if an image fails to load on a visitor’s screen.
    • Image Title: An image title attribute is shown with the image, normally when you hover over the image as a tooltip.
    • Image Caption: An image caption will display publicly to your visitor and can provide you the ability to detail what the specific photo is and who is in it.

  3. RE-FORMAT YOUR PAGE LAYOUTS TO INCLUDE BULLET POINTS AND NUMBERED LISTS.
    A page full of words without any images and formatting display options like bullet points and numbered lists may have great, important information, but… when you change the layout and make it easier to read, people may ‘stick around’ longer and read your whole article. Visitors normally like to skim a page and read ‘chunks’ of information.

    Give the visitor an ‘easy to digest’ page layout; they will read more and become more familiar with your business or service because they read more of the content.

  4. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A CLEAR CTA (CALL TO ACTION) ON ALL YOUR PAGES.
    In marketing you have what is called a CTA or Call to Action. The CTA is an item or event that is designed to influence your visitor to complete an action. CTA’s can be many things:
    • You may want a visitor of your ecommerce store to purchase a product. A Buy Now button or Add to Cart button is a call to action.
    • Asking a user of your website to contact you is a CTA.
    • If your business relies heavily on someone filling out a contact form to engage, make that contact form stand out on the page as a call to action.
    • If you want the phone to ring after someone views a page on your website, add a phone icon to the page with your phone number and make it a clickable link so that it rings your business when they click it.
    • If you have a new product and you are wanting to entice users to learn more about it, add a video to your website as a call to action to learn more about the product. CTA’s are vital in getting visitors to do what you want them to do when they visit your website.

      CTA’s are best done when they are clearly defined and laid out on your page.

Need help with your content marketing & SEO? Call me or fill out my contact form. I’d be happy to work with you and develop a marketing strategy for your business website.

SEO Audit Reporting

SEO Audit Reporting

What is an SEO Audit?

An SEO Audit is the process of evaluating your website as to how well it relates to maximizing your presence in search engines. An SEO audit will reveal technical SEO data, website structure information, on and off page SEO data, as well as keyword ranking reporting and content optimization opportunities.

Sample of an SEO Audit Summary Score
Sample of an SEO Audit Summary Score

SEO Audits are a great way to keep your website healthy and optimized for search engines.

Every website should have regular 'check-ups' that help to identify technical or structural issues, as well as opportunities to maximize your content for search engine optimization. By committing to these regular audits, you are increasing your chances of finding and fixing errors that could ultimately affect your rankings (SERP).

SEO Audit Prioritized Hints

What you will get with your SEO Audit

Every SEO Audit Reporting will show you:

  • Prioritized Hints that affect your site's SEO score
  • Recommendations to correct or optimize your site's technical, structural, and content data
  • Expert analysis and help to make the necessary changes to get your site as close to 100 percent as possible.

Interested in having your website audit? Click the "I Want an SEO Audit"
button below and fill out the contact form to get the process started.