Monday, August 18, 2014

The Tinsel Shop Wins Extraordinary Entrepreneur Video Contest



9DotStrategies, aside from being a full-service web development and digital marketing firm, has its support to people with entrepreneurial spirit.

It is with pride that we present you http://tinselshop.ph/, our newest project awarded to our Extraordinary Entrepreneur, Kristine Marie Padilla. Padilla won a 150,000Php worth of e-commerce website from 9DotStrategies upon winning from our Extraordinary Entrepreneur Facebook Video Contest last April of this year. Her website launched this August 15, 2014 with the help of our dedicated team of experts. Visit http://tinselshop.ph/!

Tinsel Shop Website Screenshot



The Tinsel Shop Wins Extraordinary Entrepreneur Video Contest

“We are all extraordinary as a person, but one will stand out beyond extra”


In the competitive world of business, an entrepreneur is not simply the person who starts and operates the business; an entrepreneur is someone who sees opportunities, grabs them while taking a tremendous amount of risk in between. He/she should be someone who is creative enough to imagine the future, wise enough to make decisions, and is brave enough to explore the unknown.

But what does being an extraordinary entrepreneur mean? That is what 9DotStrategies explored on when it launched its Extraordinary Entrepreneur Video Contest last January.

The mechanics of the contest is simple: upload a video, which defines what an extraordinary entrepreneur is, and show it. Whoever achieves the highest score based on the criteria for judging wins a dazzling P150, 000 worth of e-commerce website.

The search was long and hard, but among the entrants, one has depicted it more than the rest. She is a motion graphic artist for one of the top television networks in the Philippines for almost 10 years, the owner of the clothing store, “The Tinsel Shop”-- Mrs. Kristine Marie Padilla.

What inspired you to start the business?
“It is a family business,” Padilla said. Apparently, Padilla’s interest started while she was growing up since her family is engaged in the garments business as well. In 2008, she was able to launch The Tinsel Shop online. She joined some bazaars in 2009 in order to gain more sales and popularity in the market. By 2012, she was already able to put up a shop in Ali Mall and open up another one in Robinsons Metro East in 2013.
How were you able to manage your time between your family, friends, and business?

“When it comes to business, I have trusted my employees that is why I don’t have to visit my shops all the time”. She also added that she does not waste any time and she does multiple tasks. She makes designs for her Tinsel products during the dead hours of her job at the network. Tuesday is her rest day and she makes sure that Sunday would be nicely spent with her family. As someone with multiple roles in life, she was able to juggle them all through her sheer dedication and time management. 

What do you think is the hardest obstacle for an entrepreneur, and how were you able to surpass it?

“Of course, roller coaster sales. Also, funds”. As an entrepreneur, Padilla is aware that every business is a risk, but she overcomes problems with her thought of “kapit lang”. It is never an option to give up, and there is always a sign of relief once she realizes that she had already beaten the challenge.



In your video, what do you mean by ‘beyond extra’? What is it that you have more?

“We are all extraordinary as a person, but one will stand out beyond extra! And that’s me”, she stated. Padilla showed her youthful and creative outlook in life through her video that reflects how she manages her business. She explores the world through her imaginative mind and seeks to make her products unique. Padilla stated that unlike other entrepreneurs she is fully aware of the significance of new technologies, keeping up with the trends and relating with her market.

How do you become extraordinary or “beyond extra” as an entrepreneur?

“In business, I do not consider what I want, but what my market wants”, she said. Thinking in a way how her market would respond helped in the bloom of Padilla’s business. She also added that her past jobs had helped her develop art skills.

How do you stay at par with the competition? What serves as your competitive advantage?

“I make sure that my products come differently and with a twist that is why I personally design them (some are bought outside the country). I also want to be the first to offer the product in the market”. She also added that her product ideas evolve from watching shows and doing research related to the industry.


You mentioned that you started in the online business, so what do you think serves as the perks of having your own website?

“Aside from having no required permit, online purchasers cannot ask for discounts. It also saves my business, when there are few sales on shops”. Undeniably, websites and online shops create wider awareness and reach of the target market and it shows strong credibility in public, which she also mentioned.

What joy does entrepreneurship bring to you as an individual?

“There is joy each time I make a sale and I would think, “Yes! Alam ko ang uso!”. Basically, it is all about self-gratification. She would be flattered every time her customers say she looks young. Keeping a youthful appearance and attitude has helped her relate to teenage customers. Though she juggles a lot of work in her hands, it is all worth it at the end of the day.

What is your dream for your business?

“To dress up the whole world!”, exclaimed Padilla. She wanted her shop to be present in all malls and to see how people appreciate her craft. Though it may seem extravagant, she continually strives to turn this big dream into a reality. “Hindi ka din naman forever employee”, she answered when asked about plans of being a full time entrepreneur. In spite of her successful career as an artist, she is fully aware of the constraints of being an employee, especially in today's ever evolving and competitive world.

What is the “secret recipe” for your business to be successful?

“Well, success is subjective and it varies with different people’s perspectives; but for me, the secret recipe is to ‘keep going on’ and ‘staying young”. Since Padilla’s target market is teenage girls, she has to ‘think young, stay young, and be young’ in order to provide the right needs, wants, and trends. She also encountered a lot of challenges, but she just kept going on to arrive at where she is now and sit on her throne of success. 

With her story, being an entrepreneur may seem tough, but rewarding. You need to have a lot of courage to take risks, but along the way you would find it exciting and and worth it when all your hard work pays off in the end. As what Padilla had said, it is gratifying when people love and are pleased with all your hard works. In entrepreneurship, you are your own boss, you can control your own time, schedules, and is free in doing whatever you want, just never forget your values and business ethics. Business is a gamble, and sometimes even the smallest thing can make the difference, it can either make or break you, but in taking these risks, you learn to grow and expand your horizon.
                                                                                                                                           
Everyone is extraordinary, we have our own way of thinking, of working, of dreaming as we are all unique in this world. In this vast jungle we live in, being ordinary is out of the question, being extraordinary is a must. At times, to stand out among the rest; we must go beyond what is extra. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

#ChickenSad: ERP Transition That's Costing a Lot of Sad Faces for ChickenJoy Fans

Switching from one Enterprise Resoucre Planning (ERP) software from a new one, it has been since August 1 when Metro Manila citizens are having a shortage of Jollibee Chickenjoy and other food products from the largest food chain business in the Philippines. What caused such shortage in Chickenjoy of Jollibee? Is it due to the ERP migration glitch or the development company’s poor project management?




According to Rappler.com, about 72 Jollibee stores in Metro Manila were temporarily closed in the first two weeks of August due to the shortage of Chickenjoy supplies or none at all.

"Some of our stores are operating with a limited menu as we are currently upgrading our systems. Rest assured that we are committed to having all our products available again within a few days in all our affected stores", explained a representative of Jollibee through its Facebook fan page on August 7.

The Inquirer mentioned on its website that Jollibee Foods Corporation (JFC) filed a stock exchange report that the disruption of supply was due to a problem in the IT migration as they switch to a new system, but issues will be resolved within the next few days. JFC said that the transition affected their operations such as product loading, vehicle dispatching, and sales order taking.

The shortage of Chickenjoy, Spaghetti, and Yumburger among its food chain outlets received mixed reactions from local customers. The hashtag #ChickenSad went viral in social media channels and even caught the attention of leading newspaper media.

Rappler.com shared some insights on the JFC's system switch problem:

1. System migration- JFC reportedly switched from one ERP system to another to manage its database and operations. The sudden migration was conducted in one blow and affected 72 stores in Metro Manila or more. The sudden migration was thought to have glitches due to poor project management planning, User-Acceptance-Test (UAT), migration planning, back up planning, and overall staff expertise execution. Should the project implementation team conduct the ERP migration in test batches/parallel run, bugs could have been fixed easier and within a controlled environment. Also, the old ERP system should have served as a support, while the tests are being run and bugs are fixed during the UAT/migration/action plan.

2. Questionable staffing- Issues arise whether the IT team who handles the JFC project is equipped enough to execute a major ERP migration. Also, questions arise whether the team has the expertise to properly manage the JFC project.

3. Lack of back up planning- It has been two weeks, but JFC still struggles with the supply of its popular food products as well as its customer service management. Questions arise whether JFC has prepared for a probable operational lag while their system is in transition, and the need for alternative management support.

4. ERP- JFC as having nationwide supply chain stores as well international franchise stores, should have given more time in planning for the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software switch. The complexity of the processes involved in shifting the business operations system from one ERP to a new one should have allotted at least two to three years in completion instead of one year. Complications are expected to rise when User-Acceptance-Test (UAT), parallel run, migration series are rushed. Also, when the project is handled by developers who have no or minimal experience in ERP development-migration, disaster awaits the client.

5. Local IT support team- Nothing beats the dedication, competence, and reliable qualities of a neighbor.
When working on a big project, it is wise to seek the help of a trusted partner in the local industry. If you can find a qualified and experienced IT company in the Philippines who have trained staff to handle the ERP project, why go overseas? Business processes and corporate culture are better understood by a neighbor who knows how you operate for years. Thus, entrusting the core system of your business should be handled by a trustworthy colleague in the IT industry. Think of total quality, excellent project management, accurate result, and 24/7 IT support. It sounds difficult to find such IT company in the Philippines, but just search and you can have one. When you consider the value that these bring, price becomes a second priority. 

JFC's current situation prompts related IT companies in the Philippines to check their readiness in handling big companies who wish to shift from one ERP systemto another. This question brings into light the availability of professional ERP developers or IT personnel in the Philippines to accommodate local businesses. Also, the proposition that let Philippine-based IT companies work with local clients to facilitate a full-service development project with reputable quality standards.

Are you still #Chickensad? Let's help JFC overcome this system glitch by remaining loyal. Know more about Acumatica, an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) development company that 9DotStrategies are partnering with, call our Business Analyst at +1-510-936-8878 (US Direct) or +63 02 846-6845 (PH). We will be happy to guide you in your system transition plans.


Source: http://www.rappler.com/business/features/66087-jollibee-chickensad-costly-it-problem

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Designing Your Website - Upgrade Your Free Blogspot Website

Like to have custom website design? Can't you upload some songs for your online music store? Do you want to feature your product launch video? Does your category list needs a professional look? If you answer yes to all these questions, then it is time to upgrade your Free Blogpost website. You can seek the help of a Web design Company in the Philippines to do the further customization of your site.

If your business requires you to feature singles from the latest albums; then it will be a must to enable your music widget, and get more data storage to upload and showcase your audio files. You can only do this, if you will host your own website.






Another sign that you need to upgrade your blogspot website is when you have produced product launch videos as part of your new marketing campaign. You can either ask a friend to develop a fully-functional website for you, or hire a Web Design Company in the Philippines that is an expert to do the job for you.

The ultimate sign that you should get your own website hosted is when the Services list is scattered all over your main page. When you see posts, photos, and category tabs showcasing a repetitive or random featured products/services all over your main page, then you must consider a custom website redesign.

 If you need custom sales tools, try the e-Commerce that will enable integration of online payment gateway. This helps you install PayPal, DragonPay, and other software applications to boost sales management right on your website. The integration will require basic programming skills to connect API systems into your database software, and into the main website. 

Should you need a professional Web Design Company in the Philippines to help you implement your plans for your online business site, call 1510.936.8878 (US) or 632.846.6845 (PH). We will be glad to take your business into greater heights.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Responsive Web Design: What Are The Benefits

Why do you need to have a responsive web design for your website? Simply because you need to keep your page rank high in search engines, and then everything else will follow.

A responsive website design is the new requirement of search engines such as Google among websites. Search engines need to address the growing number of mobile users who daily conduct internet transactions through their smaller screen.




A responsive website design allows users to view websites fittingly on mostly 5-inch smartphone screens, and the images and texts adjust accordingly as you move your finger on the screen. The flexibility of responsive website design to adapt the movement of the finger allows heightened user-experience and improved functionality of visual content elements.

More than just a design, a responsive website reaches across all mobile devices, providing you a wider market to implement your internet marketing campaign for. With the growing smartphone subscribers, you can now reach your target market strategically, and provide them convenient ways to buy and pay for products/services online. The increasing value of responsive website design for search engines makes it the best tool for internet marketing campaign.

How can a responsive website design help your internet marketing campaign? Specifically, a responsive website design offers the following benefits:

1. More back links opportunity. If your website is responsive, you can build and spread links better. Through a responsive website, you can integrate your social media campaign with your on page and off page Search Engine Optimization strategies. For example, you can enable a software app version of your featured product on the Facebook fan page, then embed links towards the main website. Create an organic link building campaign to and fro your mobile app and promote it virally through your social media accounts. If your website is not responsive, then your mobile app and social media channels, cannot deliver optimum results.

 2. Prominence. If you want to be on top of the search results, you must adhere to the Google requirements of quality information and excellent user-experience. Redesigning your website into responsive helps you comply with Google standards and customer demands, thus keeping you on top of your field.

3. More inquiries and conversions. If you can keep the number one spot in search results, then more customers will be calling or sending you email to inquire about your featured product/service. If your website or social media page contains the necessary information for product description, price, and payment option; then you are on your way in increasing the revenue of your business.

More back links, prominence, and sales opportunities are what a responsive website design can do for your business. These benefits can improve your overall internet marketing campaign, and enable you to achieve higher revenue at the soonest possible time within minimum budget. 

To help you convert your website into responsive, call our Web Design and Development Consultant at 1510.936.8878 (US) or 632.846.6845 (PH).

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

How a Responsive Website and a Mobile Marketing Campaign can restore your Online Presence

If you are one of the online business owners whose website ranking fell, then your online sales could have been affected too. You might be looking for ways to regain your position among search engines as well as increase your sales. There are two ways to solve your problem: convert your website into responsive and implement a mobile marketing campaign. 




A responsive design lets you view your website perfectly across smaller screen sizes. This means, you don’t have to scroll to the left or to the right just to view the next part of the page. With a responsive web design, you can now browse your favorite sites on your Smartphone, tablet, or laptop with a perfect view and a readable content. You can easily see call-to-action buttons on top or side for quick e-commerce transactions. Also, the images and contents are minimal to facilitate faster downloading time.

 The convenience of surfing, shopping, and socializing through your Smartphone is getting more attractive among online users and is a demand nowadays in search engines.  No wonder why, Google/Yahoo/Bing is preferring websites, which are responsive. So, to regain your rankings, convert your website into responsive and start seeing improvement as you include social media, e-commerce, and other mobile software application features.

On the other hand, the mobile marketing campaign lets you maximize the features in your responsive website design. Start integrating your social media campaign into your mobile software application features. For example, you can feature the mobile application in your Facebook page, and allow users to play it/download it/ share it. This allows you to earn live links and enlarge your online presence, such an instant popularity for your brand. Also, you can easily send messages and post advertisements about your product/service through the social media sites without spending much. This lets you reach your online target market directly and create conversion fast. The mobile marketing strategy allows you to regain your online popularity and increase sales within minimal budget and time.

Converting your website into responsive and launching a mobile marketing campaign might need adjustment on your business, but the benefits are huge. It is worth considering, especially when you need to cope with the buying trends of your target market, and penetrate the growing population of Smartphone surfers. It is strategically wise to invest on updating the features in your website, and integrating social media strategies into your mobile marketing campaign. Being able to directly interact and share information with your target market online is a big step in recovering your business from the impact of search engine algorithm change. 


Monday, April 7, 2014

Will Your Business Benefit From SEO?

You know that your company needs an official website to make your brand known online, and Search Engine Optimization or SEO will take up a chunk of your marketing budget. But how will you know if this service will help your business? Are the funds better used on other offline or online marketing and advertising methods?




If you are thinking about hiring an SEO company for this task, ask yourself these questions before you make a decision. These inquiries should determine the viability of your ROI (return on investment):

What is my budget per month?

There are a lot of organizations that will take care of all aspects of SEO, including link building, organic optimization (this refers to the usual search results), and PPC (Pay Per Click) Management. Others would concentrate on a specialization based on their niche. These factors are customizable in a way that will allow you to reap rewards from them, whether you utilize them all at once or separately.

What is the goal of my business?

Inspect your official site. Will it only be used as an online brochure, or will it become a website for e-commerce? Collect a handful of quotes from different SEO providers and figure out how many conversions or visitors you will need to validate the value for money and its overall cost. For instance, if you are selling a niche item like a particular bolt that is compatible with only one type of door, will there be a demand for your merchandise? If your industry has a lot of competition, you will definitely need search engine optimization to attract customers.

Always remember that even if the SEO company you employ is successful in giving your website a high rank, the process is far from complete. Do not place all your investments on this process alone. Tread lightly, do your homework, and you will know if SEO will be worth the investment.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

New Features in Gmail for iPhone and Android

As Gmail has celebrated its 10th Anniversary, it gave away gifts to iPhone and Android users such as free "Shelfie" customized theme and new tabs for Purchase, Travel, and Finance. These new Gmail features for iPhone and Android are aimed to improve the mobile user interface experience. 

Image via Wired



The "Shelfie" feature in your gmail allows you to upload your personal photo as your wallpaper. You can now see your photo as you read email, chat with online friends, or browse for updates. The "Shelfie" feature notification will pop on your iPhone or Android screen as soon as you log in to your gmail account, assisting you throughout the process. Remember to go to the “Settings” tab, select “Themes”, tap “Custom Light or Custom Dark”, and then upload your photo.

More than a profile theme, "Shelfie" promotes community sharing as Gmail lets you distribute your photo through Google+. This means you can have your personal picture be seen by your friends in Gmail/Google+ and have them upload it as their own wallpaper. If you want your friends to see it, select the “Share your Theme” option and tap “Share on Google+”. This "Shelfie" Gmail feature for iPhone and Android adds itself in the loop of social media, strengthening its advantage of conducting media campaigns.

Another anniversary gift that Gmail gave away to iPhone and Android users is the Purchase/Travel/Finance new tabs. Gmail sorts your emails in a more organized way by categorizing the content further. If, previously, you see tabs such as forums, social, updates, and promotions; you will now see additional categories on your screen, with Gmail's intention of cleaning up your inbox. Simply glide through the categories, and select your priority mail to view desired message. This works better for 5" smartphones as the new tabs fits neatly within the size of your palm. These new tabs come in a fresh look, resembling the design of Gmail’s new batch of applications.

Researchers stated that Gmail is planning to launch "Pinned" and "Snooze" features soon after the 10th Anniversary celebration. Sources mentioned that the "Pinned" feature will allow you to pull similar messages together onto the upper screen for easy viewing, and move them back after reading. Again, this feature can be best experienced if you are browsing your emails through a smartphone. The fluidity of the gmail categories and the quick responses through touch are undoubtedly aimed to improve the mobile user interface.

On the other hand, the "Snooze" feature serves as a time tracking device among your important messages. You can set a time for a significant message to ring or buzz, and have it stop when you finally respond to it. This allows colleagues or co-workers to remind each other of urgent customer emails or correspondences. This feature also allows workers to remind their boss of an upcoming client meeting; vice versa, employers now can remind their employees of an upcoming project deadline. Alternatively, friends now can update each other of travel or band rehearsal schedule. These new Gmail features are also available in tablets, laptops, and personal computers.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Key mistakes to avoid for an SEO Company

You have read tips on what to do and what to expect when it comes to running your own SEO team but what about the things to avoid? It is best to learn from the mistakes of other people so that you don’t have to experience them yourselves. Every mistake that you make can mean a lost client or worse, actual money being drained from your bank accounts.



 
Here’s what we think are the top 5 worst mistakes you can ever make if you are running your own SEO company.

Mistake #1: No sense of ownership for the results

If there is no one person owning the data that comes out of SEO results, then you are screwed. Someone can easily blame another team member and the blame-passing never ends. At one point, one person must be held accountable for the SEO numbers and analytics per client of yours. That is simply non-negotiable. Then it is up to this person to help improve the numbers if it is negative or help maintain the velocity if things are doing well.

Mistake #2: Not using Google’s Rich Snippets tool

Most of your SEO changes takes time to take effect but there are a few things that you can check within a few days like the rich snippets support for Google hits. You must use this tool provided by Google so that you can provide quick links, at the results level, to important sections of your site. For example, if you are selling women’s shoes, you might want to have rich snippets for:

•    Running shoes
•    Same day delivery feature
•    SALE items

Mistake #3: Not knowing your top 5 conversion words

If you and your team do not know the top 5 words that lead the most conversions (not necessarily the most traffic) into your pages (or your client’s pages) then you are in trouble. How do you know which are your top 5 conversion words (words that lead to sales)?

•    List words that you aspire your team to be associated with
•    Create a focused list of words that correlate to one another
•    Check out your closest competitors words when you search them on Google

Mistake #4: Not investing in a good domain name

We cannot stress this enough – a lame sounding domain name is a recipe for disaster. Domains with hyphens, variations in spelling or worse, are difficult to read (think if you print the URL on a shirt – is it easy to read?) are less likely to be remembered by your customers. While we live in an age where you just have to click a link, it is STILL an advantage to have easy to remember domain names. Invest in them!

Mistake #5: Overdoing your SEO efforts

Lastly, overdoing your SEO efforts can land you in the blacklist of Google. Don’t keyword stuff, don’t overdo your link building at the expense of losing quality content.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Type of Content for Potential Customers

If you have been following SEO and digital marketing blogs this year, you may have already read the part that content is king, once again. What does this really mean? This means that more and more people put value on what they get out of your site, versus being sold a product directly.

Customer loyalty and recommendations are based on how the user thinks of your site and your brand – do you appear to be genuinely helping your customers? Do they think that there is more to your posts other than advertorials?




Think about these questions as you build up your content for your site. We also have some concrete and practical tips for you on how you can best serve the correct type of content for your potential customers.

8 seconds to Capture your Customers

According to a recent study, a viewer spends roughly 8 seconds on your site before it decides if it wants to spend more time within it or get out. This means, it is better for you to have shorter content versus longer ones.

If you have posts that needs more than 1,000 words, consider publishing them in parts. For example, you can do Basic SEO copywriting, part 1 of 3 as your first post.

Our tip? Write articles or posts in less than 800 words with:

•    Subheaders for easy skimming
•    Easily visible links (not just underlined) for easy clicking
•    Keep paragraphs to just three to four sentences long
•    Tag your posts per topic or type of content


Get to know the 4 Types of Content

There are four main types of content that you should be aware of. Those that:

•    Entertain
•    Inspire
•    Educate
•    Convince

Depending on your brand, you can focus more on entertaining people (like how TheChive.com does it). Or you can also convince your target audience that this is the perfect luxury car for you, much like how the sleek Lexus site. Keep your focus on at least one of these four types of content and see how it affects your traffic.

Keep your Focus: Know your Audience

At the end of the day, it’s all about bringing the right sort of content to your audience. Get to know them – observe your analytics data. What kind of demographics are you dealing with? Which type of posts gets the most views and recommendations? Put yourself into their shoes – what would you like to see on the website?

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Top 3 Qualities of a Winning SEO Company in the Philippines

Choosing the right SEO Company to strategize and then execute your tactics is a very important step to ensure that your business grows rapidly today. Without the right momentum, you can easily lose your business to your competitors who have the right support and machinery to execute digital campaigns.


It is easy to think that digital marketing and advertising is cheaper and easier compared to the traditional ones, there are still a lot of things to consider when partnering with a digital agency. We have the three most important attributes that your selected SEO company MUST have.

Always Aware of the Latest Trends

Look for a team that is always staying updated with the trends. It does not matter if the trend is proven true or not, as long as they are aware and fully understand what the latest news are, then that is a great first step.

Why is it important that the SEO company is updated with the latest news? It is important because news can bring potential changes to your overall SEO strategy. For example, the Google Hummingbird update down prioritizes keyword use in your content and instead, captures contextual words used together with some keywords. You wont be seeing the keywords in your Google Analytics data, too.

Always Using the Latest Technology

Observe through interviews and demonstrations of their portfolio if the team is using the latest technology. This applies not just for SEO practices but also for tools used for efficiency across the team.

When it comes to standard SEO practices, you don’t want to be associated with a team that is doing black hat or practices that most probably lead to penalties from Google. This will just burn your money quickly and worse, set you back in the SEO rankings instead of improving your score.

Always Using the Best Tools

What tools are needed to make sure that the SEO guys are able to do their jobs properly? Apart from Google analytics (the creation of funnels for goal conversion, checking of daily traffic and live data), your future team must use one of the following:

•    Adobe Site Catalyst
•    Your Eyes
•    Google Webmaster tools
•    Majestic SEO

There are free tools that are great and there are premium tools that are worth every penny that you invest in it. It is important that your SEO team understands which tools are worth investing in so that they can do and check their work quickly.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hottest SEO Consultancy jobs in 2014

There are many roles within an SEO team. It is not just a one-man team, for sure. If you are looking to hire an SEO consultant, know that there are specific roles that are often not merged, mostly because they require a very different set of skill sets and it is quite rare to find one person to have all of them combined. Plus, it is also not recommended to have a one-man team since you are increasing your dependency to just one person. Not very wise.




Here are the top 3 jobs that you should have in your SEO team either as full time members or on a consultancy basis.

Website Content Writer and Editor

Writers and editors make sure that your pages have compelling, interesting content for your readers. A steady flow of incoming published work is necessary either in your blog section or in the news section of your site. What are the qualities of a good writer or editor consultant?

•    Has an excellent written English skills
•    Can write in various tones from informal to factual and credible
•    Works fast since you also need quantity not just quality when it comes to SEO writing.

Most writers can work remotely and can just submit their work on a weekly basis.

WordPress Developer

You can choose to get a consultant or contractual team member for WordPress development. Your first step is to download the WordPress kit and understand how it can help improve your site or even just the blog section. Why do you need a WordPress developer?

•    To help customize the look of your chosen template
•  To help update the pages especially when you want new photo galleries, transitions or menu navigation bar design
•    To help you understand which sections can be edited, compressed or added plugins to

You can choose to hire your WordPress consultant at the beginning of the project and then take it from him after the setup. But if you want seamless update of your site and if you can afford it, get the developer for at least 6 months.

SEO and Data Specialist

Counting and understanding why certain pages get more traffic, why you are not seen by Google or why certain things keep you from getting a high SEO ranking and while others can drag you down.

Understanding what the numbers mean by Google Analytics can take you weeks to read through all of the data that they can give you by default. Then there are the customizations that you can do to make sure you are converting your traffic into money (which what we all aim to do).

Sunday, March 2, 2014

World-class Website Development Company Best Practices

Nearly every web development company and business in the world has an IT counterpart. Whether you are automating your billing, creating your first online ordering site or simply computerizing your payroll (like Payroll Hero), you need a developer sooner or later.


Even if you don’t have plans to have your own development team, it is still handy to know the best practices in terms of website development. There are a couple that you can apply to your day-to-day tasks.

Limit the work in progress

Nothing slows down work faster than being bogged down with too many things to do. One look at your to-do list and you already feel defeated. You don’t want this to happen to any kind of team, most especially to a software development team.

How do you do this?


•    Each developer or team member must only have at most 3 things working on at any given time.
•    Put things on hold if there are dependencies (like an upgrade, additional requirements are needed or you need images to complete a page)
•    Remove items that don’t have to be done ASAP
•    Mark things as done when you have seen that they are already done so that they are removed from the list.

Limiting work in progress is a value shared in the Kanban process popularized by Japan’s Mitsubishi motors.

Filter and Prioritize Requests!

A huge part of limiting your work in progress depends on being able to prioritize and filter the requests that your development team gets. From identifying which are the most crucial things to do to knowing which things can wait, it is best to categorize your very long wishlist.

What is the advantage of doing this? This helps your team focus on what is really necessary, making them fully understand that the work at hand is the most important task to finish. This also helps them understand that a delay in one task affects your backlog of items.

Non-stop R&D efforts

You found a great team if you know that there is constant R&D (research and development) efforts to initiate progress and innovation. It can be as simple as how to speed up the current content upload process to lowering the cost of servers to even creating new products to offer to existing customers.

Working Code Over Extensive Documentation!

At the end of the day, it is more important to have working code rather than lots and lots of specifications in neatly written documents. This is one of the cornerstones of the popular development method, Agile.

Photo By: Simplydone Tech Solutions

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tough Industries effective Link Building Strategies

If you are up against more established, well-funded and large companies who can spend thousands of dollars on SEO strategies, don’t lose hope. We have a couple of really good, targeted and proven effective link building strategies, even if you are entering a tough industry.



Link building strategies, if executed correctly, can give your site thousands of visits over a span of a few months, which you should convert to sales soon after. Want to learn how you can level the playing field against industry giants?

Build your own Q&A Forum

Allowing users to post questions and also contribute to answers, is a great way to invite user-generated content and at the same time, encourages sharing of information from other parts of the web. One person might post a link showing where you can get the best dog trainers in the city, while someone else might post a Facebook fan page of a local dog breed support group.

If you want your site to be the most talked about site and where people converge to share information, creating that Q&A forum is one of the best first steps for you. The good news is that there are plugins via Joomla or WordPress that can help you build your forum quickly.

Create Individual Product Pages


No matter what type of product you have, you must have first level URL’s for each product you offer. This makes it:

•    Easier to remember for your users to share
•    Easier for Google to read what your page really says
•    Simpler structure for your website, both for usability and search engine crawling purposes

So this means, your URL may look like this: 
www.yourdomain.com/party-packages-kiddie-birthday for a kiddie party birthday packages.

Create a Blog for your Products and Services


You may know this already but having a readable and engaging blog is one of the best things you can do for your site. A blog brings:

•    Fresh content every couple of days
•    Allows users to get to know your product more
•    Gives you a platform for content marketing

Give a blog 8 to 12 weeks to bring effect to your SEO rankings. Make sure you stock up on good, related posts that are no more than 800 words in length to keep things fast and interesting for your viewers. Remember to test your blog on mobile view to accommodate your mobile users.

Photo By:  Work with David Wood

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Social Media Improvement Case Studies

Case studies are a great way to observe what type of strategy and tactics work for specific market segments. We all start from the beginning and some times, it benefits our business if we learn from another team’s successes and mistakes. Case studies are excellent reading material to help you decide if a planned marketing plan will most likely work or not.



There are a couple of case studies that revolve around specific social media campaigns like those done on Facebook, both with and without the help of paid ads.

Sample Case Studies to Analyze


If you have a couple of marketing plans for your Facebook fan page, you can go over these sample case studies to help you understand what type of methods work. You can also understand that you don’t need to spend a lot of money in order to have a successful run on Facebook.

•    Social games always increase interest over a product, especially if they tie in smartly to your actual offering. A parking game launched in 2007 greatly increased the awareness of a TV show about parking. Inviting friends to get more points, sharing your accomplishments to get free upgrades are a fantastic way to gain free traction for a project.

•    The Ikea Facebook Showroom campaign launched last 2009 allowed people to tag their names onto pieces of furniture that they want to win in a raffle. It was a very successful and viral campaign that didn’t even involve spending for Facebook ads.

•    Oreo’s Twitter campaign in line with their 100th birthday pitted the cookie vs. cr√®me part of the popular snack. Their Twitter campaign was timed during Super Bowl, which helped increase their overall follows not just on Twitter but also on Instagram.

Create your own Case Studies

If you want to create your own case study for your own marketing campaigns, note the following 3 essential types of a good case:

•    Statement of the problem or current situation
•    Planned and implemented solution
•    Objective statement of the outcome (preferably in quantifiable and measurable facts)

Start recording data that you get from Facebook Insights with every campaign that you launch and remember to give your marketing plan a few days to mature in order to see the best results.

What makes a successful Social Media Campaign?

The key elements in making a good social media campaign are:

•    Have one focused face of your campaign
•    Pick a prioritized and primary platform for your campaign (most if the time, Facebook)
•    Think of your content first then conversion as a second priority

Remember that consumers are a lot smarter now and that they expect a lot more from the marketing teams today.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Hummingbird Apocalypse and Keyword Research

Google recently released the Hummingbird update, which changes the search algorithm in such a way that it down prioritizes keyword blocks in favor of related words occurring within the same context. You can say that the search algorithm got a bit smarter by understanding the context of the content, not just the actual words that it contains. 



This is bad news, however, for a lot of SEO practitioners out there. A huge chunk of the current SEO strategy is to rely heavily on carefully inserted or included keywords in:

•    URL’s
•    Articles
•    Text labels and content
•    Blog posts

So now that Hummingbird is released, how do you manage?

Alternate Keyword Data Sources

Along with the update of the search algorithm is the disappearance of the Google keyword data set in Google Analytics. You cannot see which keywords bring the most traffic to your site. Keywords are still important but they are not so central in the SEO game anymore.

Thankfully, there are alternate keyword data sources that you can still use, such as:

•    Everyday Conversation
•    Keyword Cloud Tools
•    PPC Campaign Planner
•    WordTracker

Remember that keyword use is just one of many ways you can bring more traffic into your site. In fact, you should change the way you think when it comes to bringing in traffic. You should rather ask yourself: How can I make my users see more of my content?

Make use of your qualifiers!

Make a list of your chosen keywords and make a word map of related terms or qualifiers. If you notice, Google also ranks high sites or sections of sites that have a lot of words related to one another. For example, if you are reselling women’s shoes, you might want to consider the following related terms:

•    Running
•    Work
•    Ballet flats
•    Pumps
•    Nike

And other related words such as:

•    Buy
•    Money back guarantee
•    Sizes
•    Free shipping
•    Ratings
•    Review
•    Customer feedback
•    wholesale

You can also try using synonyms of your chosen keywords, like in the example below:

•    Footwear
•    Slip-ons
•    Sling-backs
•    Sandals
•    Slippers
•    Boots

The important thing to remember is that Hummingbird was designed to get rid of keyword-stuffing as an SEO tactic. This just brings the wrong kind of information the user and is actually a disservice for everyone. So write your content as friendly and as informative as you can and your co-occurrence keywords will happen naturally. If not, try swapping your repeat mentions of the same keyword with it synonym. The thesaurus will be your best friend now!

Photo By: Searchengineland

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

4 Must-haves of an Effective Web Design Company

Are you looking for a trustworthy and extraordinary web design company? How do you know if you are getting a good deal or if they are ripping you off? What makes you think that they will deliver as promised? Should you trust them with confidential product information?


Answer these questions by reading through our major tips for considering candidates for a partner design company. What are the things that you should think about?

Complete and updated Contact Information

If a good design company has nothing to hide, it will gladly encourage people to get in touch with them to gather as many leads as possible. All of the information below must be easily visible from their corporate website:

•    Official Company Name
•    Office Address
•    Email Address
•    Phone Number
•    And if possible, a Google Places link to their office

Another good sign is if they get back to you within 24 hours of your inquiry whether it is via email, SMS or even via their Facebook fan page.

Fast-loading Pages

Any corporate website that loads for more than 4 seconds on normal internet speeds is a goner. Their corporate site is supposed to be one of their best products and if they cannot optimize their store front for fast loading, then you are better off elsewhere.

Leads-capturing Mechanism

If the corporate website has encouraged you to get in touch with them, leave them your email address or better yet, chat with their online team, then you are in good hands. Any web design company who takes online leads seriously shares the same value with you. Live foot traffic on your website is absolutely important and you must act immediately when there is someone on your site. Some good lead capturing mechanisms include:

•    Inviting email newsletter subscription forms
•    Free trials of products where your email address is required to process the trial
•    Online customer support popups like Zopim and Zendesk
•    Sign up sheet for free offers or discounts (again, making you leave your email address with them)
•    Interesting blog that encourages you to subscribe to its newsletter or RSS feed

Easy Navigation

Lastly, a web site for a design company that does not need tutorials or does not make you look for something for more than 5 seconds is a well-designed site. And you want that same editing eye for your projects. You don’t need all of the links you list for your product.

Oh and one last thing, the design team MUST have a mobile-responsive website or else, look somewhere else.

Photo By: Outsourceforce

Monday, February 10, 2014

Social Signals of Twitter and Facebook are not part of the Ranking Algorithms, says Matt Cutts

Being owned by Google, it is natural to expect that recommendations and posts on Google+ will positively affect your search engine ranking. But what about the other social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter? Will your carefully written spiels for your Facebook fan page affect your main website’s search engine ranking?

Maybe. Maybe not.


According to a statement from Google’s head of search Matt Cutts, there are evident exclusions that points to the fact that Facebook and Twitter content are not being considered by Google for your website. It is not a matter of Google not being able to read the contents from the top two networking sites. Because they clearly can. It’s just that these content are not given special weight just because they are from Facebook and Twitter.

There is too much personal content on Facebook and Twitter

Crawling or reading of social network pages to index your site means sifting through the tons of information listed in it and then making it accessible to the general public. Now we all know that Facebook and Twitter has tons of publishing settings (For friends? Friends of friends? Everyone?) And truth be told, there is simply too much personal information in these sites that we are not exactly sure which one is informative or not.

How personal recommendations can eventually help a site

What Google is working on now, is that Likes and Follows, as well as recommendations of pages, will eventually be considered in judging if a site is useful or not. Currently, Google + has a “plus” feature where you can recommend a site directly from the search result hits.

This is something that makes a lot of sense. If your published article is really helpful or at the very least, interesting and 89 people shared that in a span of a few days, then there must be something good going on there, right? And you should be effectively recognized (and rewarded) for it.

The best action for you is to be ready for it. Think about the following factors that Google is considering now:

•    Number of shares or retweets a certain URL has
•    How many +1 via Google + a certain URL has
•    The amount of following or credibility a person has when posting a URL

Rethink and reposition your SEO strategy to make the most out of your recent learnings regarding social media and how Google sees it.

Photo By: AmericabestSEO

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

How effective is Website Content Writing

Inviting visitors to your website is easier when there is compelling and relevant content written in your pages. If a person finds your page useful, your site is just one click away from being shared to the social networking feeds. From there, if at least one person finds it useful, then it can easily go viral. Before you know it, your whole article is trending on Facebook and Twitter.




How do you make this happen? You need to invest in good, creative website content writing.

Advantage of written web content – increased page views

Well-written content benefits your site not just today but in the next few months (or even years). With each good article that people share and read, that is a page view to your credit. Remember that Google counts the amount of time a person spends on your site. So if a user just bounces back (loads your page then quickly exits), then Google assumes that either they didn’t find what they are looking for or there is something wrong with the actual page. You don’t want this to happen.

Increase your page views by:

•    Making your articles easy to read. Avoid single articles that are more than 1,000 words long.
•    Provide a glossary for tech terms so that an average person can fully understand what your article is about.
•    Hyperlink references and resources.
•    Link back to old posts that are related to your current one for easier navigation.
•    Use an easy-on-the-eyes font across your entire site.


Value-added service for your product

You also boost the value of your product when you have well-written, thoughtful and insightful website content. Here’s an example on how an online vendor for iPhone 5s cases can boost its value through good articles:

•    Write about how you can prevent Home button damage to your iPhone 5s
•    Create infographics about which casing type is most popular in the country
•    Feature an update brought to you by the iOS update
•    Post a step-by-step tutorial on how to update apps using the iPhone 5s
•    Do a side-by-side comparison of an iPhone 5 vs. iPhone 5s

Improved brand credibility with relevant website content

Your brand also benefits from well-written content. It tells your customers that you spend time and money on cleaning up your content. You are staffed by educated people and you value each customer a lot, which is why you are providing them more than what they are paying for with value-added services.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Types of Graphic Designers

Being a graphic designer means knowing how to make the right kind of images for a particular project. Sometimes, these images are as large as tarpaulin advertisements on freeways and sometimes, they are as small as mobile ads on your iPhone 5.

Are you thinking of becoming a graphic designer? What sort of jobs are out there for you? We have compiled what we believe are the 4 most interesting job types for artists or graphic designers.
 
 

Job #1: UX designer

A designer focusing on how a user interacts with a website or application – from discovery to registration, logging in, playing or viewing pages to exiting the site, is called a UX or User Experience designer. Apart from creating attractive elements like buttons and images, it is also your job to:

•    Make sure elements are viewable from all platforms (mobile, tablet, desktop etc.)
•    Create an easy experience for buying or viewing the site (whichever are the goals of the site)
•    Design a smooth flow from one page to the next
•    Make sure there are no dead ends or errors in terms of page flow

Job #2: Entry-level graphics

Entry-level graphics are popular these days since they are affordable and can be tasked to do simple and yet important things like creating icons, cleaning up photographs, laying out images for publishing etc.

These types of graphics work can apply to the following industries:

•    Print and traditional media
•    Digital ads
•    Web design and development
•    Illustration houses
•    Schools and universities
•    Consumer goods and marketing teams


Job #3: Art or Creative director

For those wanting leadership apart from doing creative work, you can try being an art director or a creative director. What is the difference between the two?

•    Art director – focuses on graphical elements like fonts, overall layout, design flow and branding
•    Creative director – covers even the copy content (text), musical scoring and video production

So this means you are not just working on your own work now, you are responsible for a cohesive and compelling campaign for a product or brand.

Job #4: Digital advertising artist

A digital artist specializes on creating mobile and web images – making sure they are optimized for quick loading, follows web standards and are easily used by the web development team. This involves the following skills:

•    Optimizing file sizes without compromising on image quality
•    Using sprites to minimize repetitive files for a site
•    Using web fonts for maximum browser compatibility
•    Understanding mobile display requirements and standards

There are many options for a career in graphic design and there is no better time to start learning than today.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Social Media Marketing Mobile

Utilize today’s technology by thinking smart when it comes to your media marketing plans for mobile. Incorporate social elements such as encouraging people to Share, Like, Tag and Re-post articles, videos and images.

Being visible in a consumer’s social network feed is important – some companies choose to pay for a spot to be seen in the feed while others do it organically. It is up to you if you choose to use the paid or free mode. We have some tips for you, especially if you are just starting out your business, on how you can make the most out of social media marketing via mobile.




Make the most out of mobile alerts

One of the behaviors that you can maximize on mobile is that apps have the ability to produce alerts. This pushing of alerts into the mobile screen, even if an app is on idle or not active, is very powerful. Use this the right way, and consumers will appreciate you being proactive. Abuse it and you will be viewed as spam.

Maximize daily Social Media behavior

Another type of behavior seen on mobile and social networks is the addiction of people to check their social networks daily. This means, as a business, you have at least one chance every day to make an impression. Here are our tips:

•    Post your content early in the day, before 9:30 am so that when they are going to work or just before they start their day, they can see your post online.
•    Or you can also post during lunch break, where a lot of people check their social network feeds.
•    Keep your content short – videos should be 2 minutes long, so that they can easily view it on the go. Make a 3 or 4 part video series if you think 2 minutes is too short.

Social Media Marketing mobile tips

How else can you use social media on mobile to your advantage?

•    Create short and yet engaging content for easy viewing online
•    Invite users to subscribe to your email newsletter (since a lot of people view their emails via mobile)
•    Make sure your main website is mobile responsive.

Add a Google Analytics code to your pages and observe the traffic that comes into your site. From here you can also see how many customers are viewing your pages via mobile and you can adjust your strategy from there.

Photo By: Entrepreneur

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

How SEO is influenced by Social Media

Google levels the playing field and it is in favor of the smaller but smarter players. You can rank as high as how Amazon ranks if you know how to leverage and maximize the influence of social media into your search engine ranking.

Curious and excited to know how you can beat the big guys? Here’s how.


Google+ is your new best friend

Add a Google+ button in every single page of your site. Don’t have a Google+ account yet? Create one!

Google’s very own social media allows you to recommend links and content to your peers, and it shows up in their Google results when they are logged into their Gmail accounts. Even if you believe Facebook has the higher traction, it does not hurt to start sharing articles into your Google+ circles today.

Increase your index time

Boost the visibility of your content when you share them through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even Pinterest. It is easier to find content via these sites (and domains) as compared to ordinary blog posts. What this means for you is that Google finds you faster and therefore, ranks you faster, compared to doing things on your own.

How can you help yourself through social media?

•    Post a link of your latest update through Facebook and Twitter
•    Include a Facebook recommend or Twitter tweet button at the end of every page to encourage sharing
•    Create witty hashtags associated to your brand and use them with every photo and link you post
•    Ride on trending hashtags like #ootd and #tbt
•    Share other site’s contents on your own social media feeds, give them credit and then link it back to your own products

SEO via social media presence gives your brand more personality and brings you closer to your audience. It also strengthens (and creates) emotional connection to your products easily.

More shares = improved ranking

Resist the temptation to run promos that require people to share or re-post images from your site. This is viewed as a cheap way to get traffic. You can encourage sharing without being in your face by banking on UGC or User Generated Content.

How can you do this?

You can try running a promo where people can submit their own photos using a hashtag for your product. This will generate enough buzz for your product without being too much of a hard sell.

Shared contents within your pages rank higher in the eyes of Google. You will notice that in your typical Google search today, at least one item in the first page of hits has a social media link to it. SEO is really influenced by social media, especially when it comes to determining the relevance and credibility of a site.

Social bookmarks means more foot traffic

Liked pages of Facebook and followed Twitter feeds are disguised bookmarks to your pages. The more interesting your posts are, the more intrigued your readers will be and therefore, the more they will view their post.

Avoid being marked as spam by your audience by only posting about what is relevant and by not posting more than 4 updates within a day. Normally, just 2 per day is fine. Don’t force an update if you don’t have one.

You can still generate social media traffic by answering questions on posts, commenting on other people’s post and sharing links from other nice and yet related sites to your own.

Personalized search results

Probably one of the biggest reasons why Google thinks social media content is relevant in SEO today is that it provides a personalized search results list. Google prioritizes what your friends have recommended, what is trending in your current location and the like.

Photo By: Ted Nguyen USA

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Content Marketing Guide for 2014

Get ahead of the pack by forecasting what you need to do in 2014. Smart marketing and insightful decisions can really help improve your current web traffic and convert your viewers to paying buyers.

What do you need to plan for within 2014? What are the marketing trends that you need to consider? Do you need a guide on what’s hot and what’s not within the next 12 months?

We have compiled our expert advise on how you can create compelling marketing strategies to inspire your followers to become paying customers.




Create more visuals for 2014

Invest in good photos and publish them online regularly in 2014. The rise of Pinterest and Instragram gives you a clue that more and more people are drawn to visual content compared to text articles. Why is that?

It is because visual content creates a stronger bond, an emotional connection to the content. Plus, it is a lot quicker to convey your message via a single glance to your photo compared to reading a lengthy article.

Here’s a guide on how you can maximize your image content:

•    No matter how nice your photo is, if it does not describe your product in its file name, then it wouldn’t be found. Skip those image01.jpg file names. Be descriptive!

•    Optimize your image size for viewing online. You don’t need 2 MB photos online! Plus, this will slow down your site’s loading speed.

•    Give your viewers an idea on how they can use your product in at least 3 ways.

•    Think out of the box when it comes to images – images don’t need to be literal. You can convey emotions through the images you select.

•    Always find a way to link back the image to your site. Whether through the filename or a watermark or the actual product logo showing in the photo.

Aim for a Global Audience

Today, the world is your audience. It is not just New York City or Singapore – it is everyone who has Internet access (and that is nearly everyone in the world). If you find out (through Google Analytics) that your site is strong in particular parts of the world, then it might be worth it to include their currency into your shopping cart or better yet, translating your pages into their native language.

Content marketing for 2014 focuses on making everything reachable to everyone. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter make it extremely easy for someone in Tokyo to view live content all the way from Sydney.

Social Media and Content Marketing combined

Maximize your free tools like Facebook posts or Pinterest boards. While there are paid versions for these (like the Facebook ads), you need to start with the basics and create accounts on the most relevant social networks.

Regularly update your accounts and inject a bit of personality into them. Don’t be too formal!

One secret to your success for 2014 is to bring in everyone closer. Since your audience is global, make them feel like they are part of your branding family.

The rise of Email Newsletters in 2014

One very concrete trend in 2014 is the revival of email newsletters. Group buying sites like Groupon has started investing in more sleek, user-friendly and attractive email newsletters which are sent out at least twice a day.

What does an email newsletter give your brand?

•    Offline access to your catalog
•    Easier searching through content – no need to bookmark pages!
•    One-click buy function
•    No need to login to your website!
•    Your audience WANTS updates from you (since they subscribed to you!)

Content marketing via email newsletters is rapidly gaining popularity nowadays. And you can expect that trend to skyrocket within 2014. 

Photo By: Open Marketing


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Google Hummingbird Effects in SEO

What is Google Hummingbird?

It is the new update to the search logic of Google, which aims to understand the context of your content, rather than just reading and identifying the keywords that you use. Typically in SEO practice, content writers insert keywords into their written work (whether in a natural way or via stuffing it unnecessarily) so that when Google reads their page, it will see the keywords then display your link as a relevant page.

Of course, this is exploited and abused by other parties and Google wants to correct that. Apart from Penguin and Panda, the Hummingbird updates aims to:

•    Change the way how searches are done
•    Minimize the impact of actual keywords and instead, focus on the whole context of the page
•   Social media is included in the relevance of the search hits, so viral content weighs more than normal published content




Unlike Google Panda and Penguin, which are actually just updates to existing search logic, the Google Hummingbird is almost a rewrite. Google does not just penalize bad SEO practices, it also altered the way it does its real-time search.

If you are blogger who writes compelling and inspirational content, you need not worry about Hummingbird. In fact, you might be pleased to know that your most shared blog posts (especially from Google+) will rank higher when searched via Google.

Who will “suffer” or feel the dramatic change from Hummingbird? Those website who rely on:

•    Keyword-heavy “blog” posts and articles
•    Keyword-stuffed title tags and meta tags
•    Link farming
•    Doorway pages

And other abused SEO strategies.


Since this new search logic intends to read and understand the context of WHY you are searching using a particular search string, this means that Google is now going beyond the actual keywords typed. Google is implementing an artificial intelligence of sorts, trying to read your mind as to why you are searching for “mobile design tips”.

To help enhance your web site even with the Hummingbird roll out, we highly recommend the following actions:

•   Write longer content so that Google can further understand the context of your page. Skip 200-word entries and instead, write longer, 800-word articles with several subheadings (don’t forget to mark subheads as h2, h3 and h4).
•    Don’t use your keywords for more than twice or thrice in an article. Use synonyms or explain your terms in a natural way.
•    Make your content direct to the point and enhance it with images, links to relevant video files etc.
•   Always have social media plugins for sharing around your content for easier linking to social networking sites.
•    Always have a Google+ button for sharing
•  Always include a comments section (can be powered by Disqus as a plugin) to stimulate conversations from your readers and at the same time, to welcome links from your audience.
•    Create content that is not so time-sensitive. This is also called as “evergreen” content.
•    Be patient while waiting for your search ranking to improve. Do not resort to short cuts or worse, black hat SEO tricks.
•    Link your new posts to old posts to make navigation to old posts easier for your readers.
•    Allow for reviews for those who are in the eCommerce or online selling business.
•   If you are in the news industry, revive old news by coming up with a “related posts” section, visible when reading the latest news.

It is definitely not the end of the world and in fact, this new search rules help clean up the spam that you see when you search Google. This also means that Google values those who spend time in coming up with creative and useful content, versus those who just rewrite everything that they see online.

Your writing does not have to be perfect. The more important thing is if you provide useful, practical, unique and compelling content that your readers come back to view more. 

Photo By: Idio