SEO — Search Engine Optimization — is the process of setting up a website so the search engines know what it is about and can find everything easily. By doing this your website is prepared to rank highly when someone does a search for what you sell.
Ideally the SEO work is done as part of a new website project because it is much easier (and faster!) to do everything as a site is being built rather than dig around an existing site, so what is below is based on doing it this way.
The above can generally be done to existing sites, with the possible exception of #3. Sometimes the platform the site is built on does not allow this part to be fully developed. The rest can be done, but it will be time consuming and expensive to complete.
Local Search is focused on the maps listings each search engine has (Google Places, Bing Business Portal, Yahoo Local). Other maps like MapQuest and local directories are also used, but the search engine maps are the focus.
When a search is being done for a product or service local to where the searcher is, the map is prominently displayed in the search results. Having a well-ranked listing is critical to being found by potential new customers.
SEO is focused on the search terms (e.g. house painters) and is all about making sure your website is set-up to go after your target keywords. this is making sure content is relevant and written well and also making sure some behind-the-scenes items are addressed to help the search engines learn about your site.
Local Search adds a location element to the search term (e.g. house painters in Pittsburgh) and is geared towards performing well the search results for people who are looking for a local business. This will show up not only in the search engine results, but also in the maps that pop up in many of those types of searches (Google+ Local, Bing, Yahoo).
Our primary service is Marketing Consulting –making sure your business has the right marketing elements in place for your needs.
A lot of traditional “offline” marketing methods do not work as they used to and in some cases they really do not work at all (i.e. Yellow Pages ads). What we do is help businesses get online and maximize their use of the Internet in their marketing plan.
What are you currently doing? What’s working? What isn’t? What do you want to achieve?
Once we know this we can craft your marketing blueprint. What goes into the blueprint may use some (or maybe all) of the following:
From the basics of getting a website to setting up and managing a mobile marketing campaign, SweetWater SEO helps our customers make the best use of their marketing budget. By incorporating online marketing with offline marketing programs, our customers reach the greatest number of customers possible for their marketing dollar, which means a greater return on their investment is realized.
We go after what we like to call a Dominant Online Presence to makeyour business easy to find online. There are two components to this:
First Page Domination – for each targeted search term we want to get your name and website in as many spots as possible on the first page.
Keyword Domination – because different people will use different terms when looking for the same service we target multiple search terms that are relevant and important to your business.
By approaching it this way, we make your business easy to find for a wide range of keywords that someone may search when they need the services you provide. It is good to dominate for the most popular search term, but even better to dominate the search results for as many related keywords as possible because you never know what search terms people may use.
We start by targeting the most important terms first, then work from there until you have a well-rounded ranking profile.
When it comes to claiming those spots in the search results, much more than just your website’s homepage can be ranked. The following items all have the potential to be ranked:
We have clients who are found up to 7 times on the first page (we like to call that dominating). Because their business stands out from their competition they are easily found by anyone who is searching the keywords we are targeting.
A big benefit to such a presence is that many of our clients have either scaled back or entirely eliminated other forms of advertising (Yellow Pages, Direct Mail, Service Magic, etc.) because they found an economical replacement that completely replaces the leads generated by those other lead sources.
There is no guarantee.
No one can guarantee any specific ranking. The search engines are constantly tweaking their ranking algorithms, so it is impossible to know exactly what it will take to achieve a specific ranking. In fact, Google says no one can guarantee a #1 ranking.
No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google.
Beware of SEOs that claim to:
- Guarantee rankings
- Allege a “special relationship” with Google
- Advertise a “priority submit” to Google
There is no priority submit for Google. In fact, the only way to submit a site to Google directly is through our Add URL page or by submitting a Sitemap and you can do this yourself at no cost whatsoever.
If you have spoken to someone who has made a specific organic ranking guarantee, please read this to determine whether you should do business with that person/company.
From past experience we know what has worked and can tell when there are changes. We can also point to current and past successes to demonstrate the ability to get great rankings for our clients. While we cannot guarantee anything specific, we are confident that you can get rankings that will help your business be found by more potential customers.
An exact amount is impossible to predict. This is not said to dodge the question. If you are ranked #1 on the first page we cannot guarantee how many people will actually visit your site or visit your site and follow up with a call to you.
There are any number of reasons why someone will or will not decide to click on a link or make contact with a business. Unfortunately, the reasons for this are generally beyond our control. That said, from our clients experiences this is what we have seen:
Our mission is to make your business as visible as possible so potential customers will be able to easily find you.
While we cannot guarantee you will see an increase in your business, we can guarantee is that we will do everything possible to get your business as easy to find as it can be. By doing this your business is seen by people who are currently only finding your competitors.
We can also help you put a process in place that helps convert visitors into customers. This does not guarantee that they will buy from you, but it does make it more likely that they will. Getting visitors to your site is important, but converting them into customers is what matters.
Having a website is the bare minimum requirement for establishing a web presence and we can help businesses that do not have one. But having a website is not enough to be found, even if it is the best looking site on the Internet.
Websites are not ranked by how nice they look or how big the business is, they are ranked by what the search engines determine them to be about and how relevant they are for various search terms. The key is to make sure the site is human visitor-friendly and search engine optimized for the terms important to your business so it can get ranked highly.
If you have already have a website we can review it to make sure it is set up to rank for the search terms that are important to your business. If it is an older site, a free website provided by your hosting company or a cookie-cuttter site hosted by a marketing company, then you will need to consider replacing that with a new website
If this sounds like your current arrangement:
then you need to get a domain and site that is 100% yours.
We can talk about this more if you are in this situation and are not sure what to do.
Once your site is optimized we can work on the other items listed in Question #1.
Website Ranking & Online Marketing Service packages are custom to each client based on their needs, so a specific cost cannot be quoted here.
Some businesses want/need just a little bit of help in improving their position, while others need everything that is available. Some businesses are in a small, non-competitive niche while others are in a large, competitive marketplace. As you can imagine, the costs will be different based on each business’ circumstances.
To give you a ballpark idea of what the cost may be for you, the businesses we work with typically spend $700/mo – $2,500/mo.
Websites are priced based on what you want to include. If you want to get a website, we will discuss your needs and get you a price. Pricing on websites can be as low as $1,500 and as high as $20,000, depending on features and functions needed.
Generally, the majority of websites we create for our clients falls in the range of $2,300 – $3,800.
Mobile websites start at $975 for a basic site and go up from there based on requirements.
The short answer is “yes”, but there is something to consider…
One of the things that makes SweetWater SEO different from most of our competitors is that we only work with one type of trade/business in a targeted area. Meaning, as long as we are working with you we will not work with a direct competitor.
However, if monthly services are suspended our working relationship is not “active” and that changes the arrangement.
It is quite possible that one of your competitors could contact us about working with them. If you are not an active client at that time, we will be open to working with that other business.
We are based in Pittsburgh, but certainly not limited to working with only Pittsburgh-based clients. We do a lot of work in the Pittsburgh area because it is an under-served market. Plus, a lot of business owners like working with someone they can sit down with if needed (we have gotten business simply because we are local), so we are a natural fit for many of our clients.
But we are certainly not tied to just working in one city.
If you are comfortable with doing everything over the phone and via email, there is no reason why we cannot work together. We provide Internet-related services and the principles are the same no matter where your business is located, so we can help you whether you are down the street or half way around the world.