Search Engine Marketing Expert is the personal blog of Richard Lee. Here you'll find the latest news and tips on Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Pay Per Click (PPC), as well as overall information and resources on Search Engine Marketing (SEM) as a whole, which now also includes components of Social Media Marketing (SMM).

Social Marketing Insights for Retailers

Social marketing is becoming increasingly more valuable for retailers. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram are some of the social networking platforms that are being used to grow business. The following are key Social Marketing insights for retailers.

Social Marketing can help build customer engagement and product awareness:

Social marketing can help you increase engagement with your online customers, but be sure to choose the appropriate channel based on your goal. For example, Pinterest is a must for retailers because it is excellent for sharing product images. As a visual network, it provides great value to retail brands. It is also important to reach the right people. Capture core fans and bring them into your social scape via website, emails, shares, and likes within a social network. To drive awareness to your brand, optimize content to meet brands by using social analytics. You can do this by determining which posts are receiving the most engagement and creating more content from that. Continually manage and keep track of your Likes, Shares, Followers, Retweets, and Comments.

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How to Rank in Facebook’s Social Search Engine

With the rise of social media, Facebook’s ability to sort social information has become just as important as Google’s ability to sort search information. Facebook’s importance as a social search engine must be considered for anyone searching for information.

Similar to Google’s PageRank, Facebook’s social search algorithm known as EdgeRank, determines the importance of content in Facebook’s search results; or in Facebook’s case, users’ newsfeeds. Newsfeeds contain the EdgeRank results of information Facebook considers most important to you. Appearing in your newsfeed are the connections deemed most important to you as well as the content they suggest or create.

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Facebook Likes are the New SEO Links

Links are such as huge part of search engines and the Internet that it is hard to imagine a time when they were not the main component of the Internet. From the great directories of yesteryear like Yahoo Directory to the king of search engines Google, links have been the main currency of the digital world.

Google’s first algorithm or formula to measure popularity of a website and ultimately it’s ranking position in the search engine revolved around counting the number of links to a website. This popularity score of links held as one of the standards of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for almost a decade. Wise to the importance of obtaining links to raise their websites standing in the search engines, webmasters sought to increase the number of links to their website, often by any means necessary. With links being such a vital part of search engines and Google’s dominance as a whole, it is hard to imagine anything in the online world that could one day surpass the importance of links.

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How to Optimize ROI for Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

When it comes to pay-per-click advertising, there are many things that you can optimize for, one of which includes ROI or Return on Investment. As an agency, we come across clients whose main goal is to optimize for such. So what are some of the ways you can go about this?


First, you’ll want to create an ROI Strategy. The main things to do in creating one are as follows:

  • Get a definition of what the advertiser’s ROI goal is
    You can’t really start strategizing for something unless you know what it is.
  • Get existing ROI data from the advertiser or an existing account
    You have to benchmark it against something.
  • Review the account
    Take a look over the account and identify any problem areas
  • Plan a Strategy and Optimize

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5 Best Practices for Landing Page Design

Landing pages are often the neglected parts of an online advertising campaign, but are an essential part of the conversion process. In fact, it is arguable that the landing page could be the most important element in helping conversion rates because no matter how good the outbound campaign is, once a user lands on the page, if there is a disconnect or if they do not find the sought after information in a timely manner, they are likely to abandon the process.

There are many factors to consider when designing a landing page. Some of them include:

1. Headline

This is the most important factor to a landing page. The headline is the first thing a viewer sees when coming to the landing page. As such, it needs to do the following in a concise manner:

  • Tell the user that they are either at the right or wrong place
  • If it is the right place, compel the user to continue the process

Try to keep the headline short, concise, and to the point, while at the same time, informative enough to keep the user within the funnel. Using keywords within the headline can help in both cases.

2. Call to Action

The Call to Action is anything on the landing page that tells the user to take action. Call to Actions should be obvious (if something looks clickable, it should be clickable) and visible above the fold and below the fold. The phrase used within the Call to Action should be active and concise.

Example: instead of “more info”, use, “get a free consultation today!”

It is also important to keep the number of Call to Actions to a minimum. If there are too many Call to Actions, it may become confusing for the user.

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Measuring Social Media ROI with Google Analytics

In the next few weeks, Google and its Google Analytics team will be rolling out a new initiative with social-focused reports. Its goal is to help individuals and businesses measure the ROI on social media marketing.

Social Media ROI

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How to Optimize a Blog in WordPress for Search Engines (WordPress SEO 101)

We’ve touched upon How to Optimize a Blog for Search Engines before, but that was mainly general information. There are specifics that can be done if you run a blog in various CMS or blog software, in this case, specifically, WordPress. WordPress is one of the most popular blogging software available. It’s open-source and acts as a relatively robust CMS.

One of the key ways to optimize WordPress is a built-in feature referred to as permalinks. Permalinks is what WordPress generates as the permanent URL for your blog posts. By default, it’s set to be a number, which is based on the id of the post and when it is created. To set your permalinks to something more SEO-friendly, do the following:

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Rewriting Dynamic URLs for SEO


For the last few years, most developers and site designers have been aware of the increased risk of using complex URLs. A complex URL tends to look something like:

This URL is a problem for both search engine spiders and, in some cases, the user of the site . Complex, non-user friendly URLs, also known as dirty URLs, are very common throughout the internet. Dirty URLs pose an array of problems. The most common problems with dirty URLs are:

  • they are hard to remember
  • they are not SEO friendly
  • they can be a security risk
  • they can just be a problem for ease of usability

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How to Optimize a Blog for Search Engines (Blog SEO 101)

Why should someone who “blogs” worry about Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? One of the most common myths about utilizing SEO in blog postings is that the text will appear to be written more for automated engines rather than for human beings. While this is possible, the proper use of SEO will help to increase readership by letting you reach more people, as well as improve your writing technique by requiring more creative ways to work with text.

Off-Site Techniques for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Off-Site techniques, also known as off page factors, are SEO techniques based on factors outside of your website that have a strong effect on search engines rankings. It’s good to know what these factors are, even if only to be aware of their effect, as it is possible to perform some simple action based on these factors that may push a website/blog up in the rankings.

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Preventing Duplicate Content in Google, Yahoo, and other Search Engines

Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines have come a long way in terms of indexing duplicate content. Although detected duplicate content doesn’t necessarily penalize your site in terms of how the search engines perceive the content, it can penalize your site by dividing users who access your site. Search engines will most likely still index your duplicate content, and thus, when a search is termed up, it could be directed towards any version of the duplicate content.

There are several ways of fixing duplicate content issues. We’ll create a scenario to determine how to fix it.

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