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34 SEO

SEO Is Not Really That Complicated

LotusJumpSo, I know this post will draw the ire of some SEO folks, but that’s alright, some need their ire drawn. SEO can be a complex science and there are those, Aaron Wall and Lee Odden come to mind immediately, that have much to add to the field of SEO when it comes to highly sophisticated implementations.

In my experience however, the typical small business need only focus on three things to greatly improve their chances for showing up in search results for key phases. (There are many, many things that can be done, but get your head around these three first.)

1) Consistently create education based content that is optimized for important keyword phrases – another way of saying this might be write lots of useful information in blog posts and work the phrases that people might use searching for your business or the problems you solve in the title of the posts.

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38 2009 Will Be the Year for Small Businesses to . . .

With 2009 just around the corner I thought it would be fun to collect the thoughts of some of the leading marketing folks around the web, but do so in what I am calling snack size fashion – so welcome to Snackfest 2009.

In keeping with the current trend in social media for small bites of info, think twitter sized responses – Plain and simple, I asked some thought leaders this question:

2009 will be the year for small businesses to . . .

Want to play along? Here’s how, post your comment answer to the same question, comment on the snack answer of each expert and tweet your thoughts using #snack09. (Follow the Twitter thread)

Here’s how some thought leaders responded to my question.
Seth Godin, author of Tribes said . . Run/grow/compete like mad because the big bad companies that have been slowing you down are in such disarray.
Seth Godin – Sqidoo page

Aaron Wall, author of SEOBook said. . .buy great domain names, as their perceived value drops due to an ad slowdown and browsers eating type in traffic.
Aaron Wall – Twitter ID

Alan Weiss, author of Million Dollar Consulting said . . . to assertively reinvent their relationships with customers and prospects, because you can’t grow by cutting back, can’t improve if you’re afraid, and can’t lead from the back.

John Battelle, founder of Federated Media said . . . get closer to its best customers, add value to their lives, and build new business from that value. Twitter ID

Andy Beal, author of Radically Transparent said . . . take their head out of the sand and start listening to the social media conversations customers, employees, and other stakeholders are having about their brand. Twitter ID

Tim Ferriss, author of the Four-Hour Workweek said . . . get advertising at 70-90% off. Recessions mean budget cuts for larger corporations, which means advertising cancellations, just as in 2001 and 2002. There will be fire sales on remnant advertising, whether print, TV, radio, or online.Twitter ID

Dan Pink, author of Whole New Mind said . . . think boldly and push frontiers while the big guys run scared and retreat to safety. Twitter ID

Tim Berry, founder of Palo Alto Software said . . . refocus on fundamentals: core strategy of identity, market, and focus, plus specific metrics and milestones, basic numbers, and planning as management, with review and revisions. Twitter ID

Bob Bly, author of Persuasive Presentations for Business said . . . prove their unique value to their customers and earn rather than expect repeat orders. Twitter ID

David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing and PR said . . . stop spending $$ on marketing. Instead create interesting information people WANT to consume.Twitter ID

Chris Brogan, publisher of ChrisBrogan.com said . . . demystify the business effects of social tools, and bring real projects to light.Twitter ID

Bryan Eisenberg, co-author of Waiting for Your Cat to Bark said . . . stop waiting for a magic bullet and realize the magic comes from hard work they do.Twitter ID

Look for another helping of expert snacks tomorrow – Snackfest – a second helping!

34 A Rank Checking Tool

Aaron Wall of SEOBook puts out some very nice free tools to use in your SEO efforts.

One that I’ve recently started using is Rank Checker. This is a Firefox plug in that sits in your browser ready to go to work. If you visit a site and wonder how that site ranks for any of your target keyword phrases simply click on the plug in icon, type in the phrases or words and hit search. Very shortly you get the ranking of that site for all the phrases you entered on Google, Yahoo and MSNLive.

Of course you can easily keep tabs on how your site ranks for all your important phrases as well.

Side note – MSNLive is really starting to do a better job with search results and I’m experiencing more traffic from them all of a sudden. (See XML sitemap post too.)