Welcome Whitson Digital Media!
Let’s be honest, whatever business you are in, you are most likely the subject matter expert of that business. You know your product or service inside and out. You know your business like no one else and you know how to provide whatever service or product or combination of both to your customers. Internet marketing, search engine optimization, website design, social media marketing, and Google Ads are probably not high on that list. Here at Whitson Digital Media we strive to make sure whatever business you are in, we provide you with the best service that we can provide by being the subject matter experts of our business, just like you do for your own customers. We invite you to contact us and become our customer and We promise to provide you with the best customer service possible.
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Top 10 Internet Marketing Questions and Answers
WHY ARE MY COMPETITOR’S WEBSITE OUT RANKING ME?
Simply put, it has to do with your keywords. Search engine optimization is how businesses can increase traffic to their website with quality search results. It is the practice of putting the most searched keywords for your business on your webpage so, when your potential customer searches for your type of business, you come up on the first page and close to the top.
Think about your own searches. You look for a specific type of business. You enter into the search bar the business and the location. For example: You need a plumber. You enter “Plumber, City & State” right? Now, thinking a little further, when you put in your search, how often do you go past the first or second page of the Google search? Unless you are looking for a specific business, not very often, right? Google is very smart in its analysis of each website for specific “keywords” people will use to search for any business. The more keywords you have on your website, the higher you will rank.
This is how SEO (Search Engine Optimization) works. The more keywords you have, the better you will rank, but it is a little more complicated than just throwing a whole bunch of words on the first page of your website. Google also has the intelligence to “scan” the website to make sure, not only if the keywords are there, but also to make sure they make sense. Meaning, the keywords are spread out within you page, sound natural and flowing as a natural conversation. It is for this reason that a quality SEO strategy is required for your business website to rank on the first page.
It isn’t all about the keywords, though. Google also looks at the security of your webpage. The more secure your site is, the better Google “likes” you. If you have a website with no security Google is likely to suppress your site in the search engine. To ensure this doesn’t happen it is important that you have SSL encryption, data integrity, and authentication security so that your website and any information your customer put in are secure.
They also look at mobile phone compatibility. What does this mean? Very simply put, it means your website needs to be responsive to tablets and mobile phone screens. If it isn’t it won’t display properly and not only will your potential customer not stay on your site, they may never come back. Google algorithm knows this and if you don’t have a responsive website, google will again suppress your website in the search.
The quality of your content is important as well. As stated before, Google is smart. They are able to scan every site for unique content. If your website “steals” its content from a competitor’s page, Google knows, and doesn’t like it. Your webpage will not get ranked and could get “blocked” by Google.
The length of your content is important as well. The more you can say about your business, with the most searched keywords, with a natural feel and unique content, the more authoritative you are, the better Google will rank you.
The speed of your website is important as well. If a webpage takes too long to load, or if the information they are looking for isn’t easy to get to, a potential customer will go to another site. People are impatient as a species. Our attention span is about 7 seconds. A website has to grab the attention of a customer within that 7 seconds or they will move on.
I know this all sounds very difficult. You are probably thinking, “How am I going to do business when I’m spending all my time updating my website, managing my keywords and making sure I’m at the top of the Google search?” That’s where we come in. At Whitson Digital Media, we have a dedicated team who will manage your website for you so you can concentrate on what’s important, your customers.
IS IT IMPORTANT TO BE LIST MY BUSINESS IN GOOGLE MY BUSINESS?
Short answer is “YES”. The why and how take a bit more to explain.
When a potential customer looks for a business, the first place they look is the “Map pack.” The first three businesses that show up next to the map on the Google search. About 30% of all searches don’t go past those first three. It is for this reason it’s very important to get your business listed in google business.
How is this accomplished? There are a few things a business owner can do to get their business listed in the Map Pack.
1: Google My Business: Also referred to as GMB, allows a company to be found by Google on Google Maps. With a GMB, your business listing is more detailed, accessible and easily found.
2: Add or claim your business: When you do a Google search for a business, Google will list a few suggestions based on the keywords you search for. If your business shows up in the suggestions, there is an option to “claim.” When you “claim” your business, you will be asked to fill out a form. By filling out the information requested, you are making sure your business is optimized for a Google search.
If your business doesn’t show up under the suggestions, you can add your business, fill out the form and get your business recognized by Google My Business. It really is that simple.
3: Filling out your business information form: It is important the information you put into the form matches your website. The name, address, business phone number, website and business name all match your webpage and any social media sites you want your business to be found. Pay close attention to the category you choose for your business. Google will use this information to classify your business. Depending on your business you may be able to choose different categories, but make sure that you use the category that best fits your business.
4: Verification: Once your form is filled out, Google will list your business where you said it should be. How they do this is simple. Google will send you a postcard with a pin number. It will take about 14 business days to receive the GMB postcard.
5: Confirmation: After you receive your postcard, follow the instructions on the letter you will receive with the post card. It will take 24 hours once you complete the instructions for the verification to be complete. Once the verification is complete, there isn’t anything else you need to do with the GMB. Simply search your business name, and there you are. To ensure your business shows up in the top three will require you to complete your GMB information completely and then get your business cited around the web. This should be part of your overall SEO strategy.
6: Check the details and SEO your google my business listing. This is where maintenance of your website comes in. Occasionally, you would have to go in and make sure all your information is up to date. Did you change addresses, phone number or web address? If so, the new information needs to be updated on your GMB.
If you would like assistance with GMB, Whitson Digital Media is here to help.
HOW CAN I USE SOCIAL MEDIA TO GROW MY BUSINESS?
Social media is a great tool business owners use to get there business more digital real-estate. Local businesses are using social media to get their name out to even more potential customers than ever before. By using social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and others correctly, local businesses can grow by leaps and bounds.
There are a few simple steps to follow to make sure your business succeeds in the social media market place. If done correctly, it will work for you. If done wrong, it could backfire.
Building a strong audience can be very profitable for any business. People love to share opinions with other like-minded people. Think about your own circle of friends. You probably surround yourself with people who like the same kinds of things you do. You share hobbies, like the same movies, book, music or sports. As the saying goes, “Birds of a feather flock together.” It is the same for business. You can attract like-minded individuals by creating groups and inviting people to join said groups to create a brand for your business.
Think about your own personal likes. Your favorite brand of coffee or soda, the cars you prefer or brand of clothing you purchase. Why do you like these brands over others out there? The answer is probably simple. You have tried others and weren’t happy with the results. The same is true for your customers. Your returning customers come back because they trust the service you offer and more than likely will suggest your services to others when asked. Having a strong social media presence allows you to get your name out there faster than word of mouth alone. It’s never too late to build your social media footprint.
As you know, Facebook has many different features and options available to the average person. As a business owner, you can utilize these options to your advantage. Fun fact, about 80% of the U.S. population has a Facebook profile. If you know how, Facebook ads can reach millions of people a day. Knowing how to use Facebook ads correctly can be a great tool for your business, but if it isn’t done correctly, it can cripple your budget. Seeking out expert advice will allow you to use this valuable tool to your advantage.
Just like any tool, you have to use it correctly. If you need a hammer, you wouldn’t use a screwdriver. It wouldn’t make sense. The social media tools are no exception. When the tools are used correctly, two things will happen. You will see growth in your business you could only imagine was possible, and the demands on your time will increase exponentially. One is a great thing! The other can become overwhelming. With the added social media presence comes the daunting task of keeping up with the added traffic. It is important to engage with your new perspective customers with responses, updated content on a regular basis, likes and personal engagement. One great thing about it is, there are a lot of available software and tools available for all social media platforms. Some of these tools include landing pages, filters, post schedulers and so much more. The important thing is knowing how to use these tools to your benefit.
If need be, hire someone to help you. Having an expert in your corner can only benefit your business. If you needed a dentist, you wouldn’t go to an optometrist, would you? Of course not. It wouldn’t make sense. Don’t be afraid to ask an expert in social media marketing to help your business grow. Social media marketing for businesses is very different than your personal profile. They are worlds apart and if you don’t have the knowledge or the time, it may be time to call in the experts.
HOW CAN I GET FOUND WITH THE RIGHT KEYWORDS?
You have spent weeks or even months getting your website up and running. You have improved the look, layout, content, and articles for your business. You publish your website and wait, hoping all your hard work, time and money pays off in the long run.
After all the work, however, you still find yourself struggling to get the desired response. You haven’t seen an increase in customers. It can be frustrating. We understand. We have been in your shoes. It may mean that you just need to be patience, organic listing isn’t an instant process it can take months for Google to start ranking your website high in the search results, then again if it has been months maybe it’s time to re-evaluate your website.
There could be many reasons for this. One of the biggest reasons in business for this is, when it comes to SEO, many businesses aren’t using the keywords suitable to properly represent the businesses message to the public. Keywords are vital to the success or failure to a business’s website. The right keywords are…well…key. You want to put the best keywords in your content so your business will be found by Google.
I know what you’re thinking, “Okay, keywords are important, but how do I get found for the right keywords?” Great question. There are a couple things to keep in mind when looking for the right keywords. First, stick to the keywords that are most relevant to your business, your services offered and relatable to your clients. You aren’t looking to attract customers who aren’t looking for the services you aren’t offering.
Second, content, content, content. You want content that is going to satisfy the users’ intent. There is nothing more harmful to your website then not have the proper content or what most people do, not having enough content. I know this has happened to me at least once, I search for a specific service, click on a website only to find out they aren’t offering the service or product I wanted at all. In internet terms, this is called “clickbait”, and it is the worst thing a business can do. Not only is it misleading, but it also lowers your credibility. It is hard to recover from something like that. Take a closer look at your keywords. Some of them may be too long, too generic or irrelevant altogether. There are plenty of keyword search tools available. An effective website can have articles and pages with more than 1000 words stuffed full of authoritative content. By authoritative I mean that not only do you need quantity, you need quality content. You want to provide quality content in a transparent manner and natural language. You want to make sure you are writing for your clients and potential prospects. Don’t focus on writing for search engines. When the content flows naturally with relevant information, the search engines will find you.
The research can be tasking and time consuming. It is for this reason, as mentioned before, it could make sense to bring in an expert team to do the work for you. Whitson Digital Media and our team are dedicated to your success.
SHOULD I USE VIDEO ON MY BUSINESS PAGE?
There are studies showing, by 2024, about 80% of all online sales will utilize video platform. There are already several businesses using video on their landing pages, YouTube, Facebook and Instagram accounts.
As a species, we are more drawn to moving objects rather than stationary. Think about this for a minute. You are scrolling through your Facebook feed and stop on an advertisement. What drew you to that advertisement? 9 times out of 10 it’s because it was a video of some sort. We are simply wired to be attracted to movement. It is for this reason video is used so frequently. Why do you think YouTube, Instagram, and TicTok are so popular? They are videos.
I know what you may be thinking, “I don’t think video is for me.” We understand how you feel. Don’t worry. The more real you are with your customers the more they will respond to the message you have to give. Being natural and transparent is key.
Video is a wonderful tool to have in your toolbox. A video grabs an audience’s attention better than text. With the emergence of social media in the 21st century, it is easier than ever to get your voice heard…literally.
Video helps you, as a business owner, tell YOUR story and connect with your audience on a personal level. It is the best thing a business can do to attract customers to them. I can almost guarantee your competition is utilizing video to attract customers, why not use it yourself? You don’t need a huge staff. You just need the right environment.
WILL SEO WORK FOR MY BUSINESS?
SEO or Search Engine Optimization has received a bad reputation over the last several years. The reason for this is because a small group of people thought they would try to “game” the system with dishonest practices. The result of these “bad apples” is it makes it harder for the honest ones to get ahead in the game. You know the saying, “One bad apple spoils the bunch” and it’s true.
The question shouldn’t be, “Will SEO work?” The questions should be, “HOW do I make SEO work for my business?” And, “Why is it so important?” Search Engine Optimization is important for one simple reason, to be ranked on the first page of Google. Think about it. When was the last time you clicked on the second or third page of a search result in Google? I bet it doesn’t happen very often if at all. It is for this reason a proper SEO is so important.
Because the algorithms are constantly changing, it is more important than ever to be able to change with them to continue to work with them and not against them. This is one arena where working with the system is better than working against the system. As Google changes, your website should change to match. Your business website must change as Google changes. What worked 10, 5 or even 3 years ago won’t necessarily work today. Businesses have to “keep up with the times” and evolve as the internet changes.
With the right team in place, you can have a functioning, clean and successful website that will stand the test of time. This can be done by the business owner, but it can be very time consuming. As the saying goes, “Time is money.” Business owners don’t have time to update their websites constantly. This is where we come in. The team at Whitson Digital Media do the work and updates for you so you can concentrate on what’s important to you, your business and customers.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR SEO TO WORK?
The answer to this question is complicated. Because the internet is constantly evolving, improving changing and updating, putting a specific timeframe on it is very difficult. Every website is different based on the client, nature of the business and the customer base being targeted. Based on these factors, however and estimation can be figured. Knowing that no two websites are created equal, the success of your SEO depends on a few factors. The layout of your page, the amount of robust and relevant content, the longevity (age) of your page, the amount of quality links embedded in your pages, the keywords used and the list goes on.
If you are just getting started, the age of your site is going to be a moot point. When you’re first getting started, the main thing to focus on are research and discovery. Research your competitors, audit your own site for the keywords you’re looking to get found for and the key phrases that are being searched most frequently to make sure you are covering all your digital bases.
The foundation is the starting point, and your website is your foundation. When the foundation is strong, then it will stand the test of time. Think of it as a house. If you build your house on the sand, it may not stand, but if you build your house on a solid foundation, it will stand for years to come.
You can start with authoritative content, adding and creating blog posts, relevant articles, company information, FAQ pages, etc. This part takes the longest and is the most time consuming. It could take weeks and even months to complete the process. This is fine if you have the time and resources to invest, but most businesses want to get their websites up and running quickly.
It is a slow process, but the results are worth the wait. If the adequate research has been done, keywords and content are robust, and your social media campaign are implemented correctly, your backlink building will start and nurture the authority of your website automatically.
It truly is a long term investment of time and effort. Most experts will tell you it may take 4 – 6 months to start seeing a return on your investment, but the reality is, it could take as long as 12 months to see a positive different. Think of SEO as a marketing tactic with the best return on your investment. If you would like assistance with your SEO needs Whitson Digital Media is here to help.
WHAT ARE BACKLINKS?
Being new to the world of SEO, there are probably several terms you don’t understand. Backlinking or link building may be one of them. You may not know why link building is important, how to get started or why links are so important.
Of course the big question remains, what are backlinks? What is the difference between a good backlink and a bad backlink? And why are they so important? So, let’s take a quick look.
Search engines use backlinks in two different ways. First, they use backlinks to discover new webpages or websites. They are looking for other webpages or websites that point back to your page. The more links you have pointing back to you, the better you look to Google. The search engine uses this information to determine the quality and strength of your webpage. It allows them to rank your site well based on the number of relevant keywords and to decide the quality of your page. In short backlinks are votes for your site, it’s a popularity contest and websites need to win it to rank in the search engines.
Second, the search engine uses the information gathered to determine the rank of a certain page and its position in the search results. This means, the more links you have pointing back to your website from creditable sources, the better your site will rank.
If your website is mentioned by Forbes, the mention would be considered a backlink. Because Forbes has authority in its own right, your page will rank higher. If the captain of the football team sat at your table at lunch, you would automatically be one of the “cool kids.” Backlinks work the same way.
The importance of high quality links is simple, to build relationships. Reaching out to other businesses in your industry is a great way to build a good reputation for both sites. It allows your website to be held in high regard as a trustworthy source for both search engines.
Another good way to create links is referrals. Taking advantage of this link building strategy allows you to promote similar products and services in your industry. Sharing guest posts and blogs within the industry helps you build your authority and acceptance.
Earlier I mention writing articles, using articles that are published on other websites is a great way to get good backlinks to your website and websites all over the internet are using this method.
You want to build your brand authority for your website. Link building is the best way to accomplish this.
This can be a daunting task. It is time consuming and requires a lot of research.
WILL PAID ADS HELP GROW MY CLIENT BASE?
If done correctly, yes. There are a few things to consider when thinking about taking out ads. There are probably a few questions you are asking yourself. How and where do I start an ad campaign? What platform should I use? How much should I spend?
You first want to define your specific goals for the ads. The method will be different depending on your goals. For example, if you are looking to generate interest in your business up front, then Facebook ads may be the way to go. The benefits with this is you get your brand out there for little expense relative to other platforms.
If you are looking for the upfront sale rather than the website traffic, then Google Ads is the better option. This option is the more expensive way to go. One of the benefits to Google Ads is you are paying Google to put your website in or near the top of the search results. This gets your business in front of more potential customers faster. The first thing you have to do as a business owner is determine the traffic you are looking for and then set your budget accordingly. Google Ads can be a great strategy to use while waiting for your website to rank organically, however we don’t recommend using Google Ads long term as it will take a huge part of your budget unnecessarily if you make sure take the time to design your website correctly.
Ad copy and targeting can be very beneficial to your business if it is done correctly. One important thing to remember with this process is creating good, engaging copy to grab the attention of your target audience. This can be a frustration and time consuming task. The next thing you need to focus on is WHO your target audience is. If you’re too broad, you will run through your advertising budget in no time. If you are too narrow, you will miss out on some, if not a lot of potential customers.
So, yes ads can absolutely benefit your business if executed correctly. Set your goal, create your copy, define your target audience and most important, set your budget accordingly. Our team of experts have helped over 2000 clients with their advertising needs.
HOW OFTEN DOES GOOGLE UPDATE THEIR SEARCH RESULTS AND HOW?
The answer to this question isn’t cut and dry. It depends on a few different factors. How often is new content added to your website? Are the keywords being updated? Are new links being added?
I’m going to answer the second part of this question first. It is important to understand the process in order to understand the timeline. Google uses a software program called a Googlebot. The Googlebot “crawls” the internet looking for all data.
There are several factors that go into how often Google crawls a few of these are how authoritative your website is, the number of quality backlinks your site has, if the site is mobile friendly, the load speed of the site and several others. When Google crawls your website, it updates the Search engine results page (SERP) and bases its results on the previously mentioned criteria. The more traffic to your website directly impacts the crawl rate. The more traffic, the more frequently the crawls.
Once the bot has done its crawl, Google indexes the results of all the data collected to rank your website where Google feels it should be. The information gathered is then updated to a searchable index as long as Google finds good quality content.
This process could happen as often as every few days all the way up to every few weeks depending on the frequency of traffic, updates to the site, the quality of the content and other factors. The important thing to remember is the more your website is out there, updated and visited, the more Google will crawl your site to update your status. You want to update your content at least once a month with new, relevant and strong content and links.
We search each client’s website looking for the key indicators Google looks for to rank a web page on the first page, in the top three and get the most traffic to their website from the Google search. We provide an in depth website analysis to help our clients to target areas we may be able to enhance to ensure the most traffic to their websites.
We have a team who specializes in local lead generation, search engine optimization (SEO) and website optimization. We look for the keywords Google looks for when ranking websites to be found easily by the individual who is searching to a specific service. We search the specific AdWords Google looks for.
We want to be looked at as one of the leading agencies in the Oklahoma City area for advertising services. We are dedicated to helping our clients grow and thrive. We want to be recognized not only for our local lead generation services, but also for our website design, SEO services, and our ability to gain a strong internet presence for our client. We feel the better our clients do reflects directly on how well we are able to create an online presence.
We want to work with our clients as a team to ensure the most traffic is driven to their pages. We can even work on creating a strong social media presence for our clients, if they this is something they want to do. A lot of businesses want to be recognized on Facebook, Pinterest, and other social media platforms. We want to work alongside our clients to create a custom website, optimization of their web page and a dominating internet presence to elevate our clients to the top of the pack.
We believe a strong digital presence is more important today than ever before. Not only that, but we believe an online presence is only going to become more important in the future. We want to make sure our clients continue to grow and thrive far into the future.
Social media plays an even bigger role in a business’s success than ever before. With more and more people utilizing the social media platforms, it has never been more important to get their business out there. The days of picking up the yellow pages to find a business is quickly coming to an end.
Let us help you with all your digital marketing, social media, SEO, website analysis and website building needs. Let our team work with you to help you grow far into the future. We look forward to talking to, and helping you with all you internet marketing needs in the Oklahoma City area.