Support local businesses and come check out this great event! Every Friday from 6-9pm in Fort Collins’ prestigious Old Town area, the local art galleries open their doors to the community to exhibit fresh new works of art. Feel free to read more about the event at their website: www.downtownfortcollins.com/.
Back in the 90’s, the internet was just beginning to flourish and people weren’t really sure if e-commerce and online stores would go anywhere, if at all. In today’s world however, that question has been answered by online giants like Amazon and eBay. Even if you’re a local business that doesn’t sell any goods online, you should still have some sort of online presence. If, however, your products are something that could be sold online easily, you should be considering the additional source of revenue because of the continuous increase in the number of online shoppers.
Let’s assume for the sake of this article though, that you’re just a small local business that is strictly a brick and mortar operation. Why should you have a website for your business, if you don’t plan on dealing with any online transactions? The most important answer to this, in my mind anyways, is that people are using online resources more than ever to find and products or services they’re looking to buy. Let’s say you are a small clothes store here in Fort Collins. Just imagine the amount of people that search online every month for Fort Collins clothes stores, finds the store’s website that sells what they’re looking to buy, writes down the store’s address that’s listed on their site, then goes there and buys what they’re looking for?
The second answer that comes to mind is how much a professionally designed website can help establish credibility for the business involved. I have seen countless websites for small businesses that look like they were designed by colorblind monkeys in the mid-90’s. What kind of image does that reflect on the business itself? Bad for them, good for you. If you have a website that not only looks good, but also stays in line with the branding of the business, it creates a feeling of stability and trustworthiness that could lead to increased revenue for your business.
Your website is an important part of your business’ brand. Treat it as such and you will notice an increase in store visits and, in turn, profit.
Whenever I tell my friends or family I do SEO( Search Engine Optimization) for a job, they usually stare at me with a confused face and ask about what that consists of. I’m sure that they aren’t the only people in the world that don’t know what it is, so I figured I’d write a quick post about it while I’m sipping my coffee.
Search Engine Optimization, in its purest sense, is a list of things you can do for a website to have to show up higher one the search engines when someone searches for a product, service, or piece of information. Let’s say that someone wanted some information on German Shepherd dogs, for instance. When someone goes to Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc, and searches that, the websites about German Shepherds that show up at the top will get more visits than the websites listed on the 3rd page of the searches results. Not too surprising, right?
This is where SEO can help those websites that aren’t listed on the front page move up a bit and notice an increase in visits. The very first part of starting an SEO campaign is finding a list of keywords that the site wants to rank for. Keyword analysis takes a bit of work and there are quite a few different things to take into account when deciding, mainly the competition for the keyword, and the potential number of visitors that keyword could get your website. After you have a small list of keywords, there are a variety of things that can be done to help the site rank for those keywords, and they’re usually divided into 2 groups, on-site SEO and off-site SEO.
On-site SEO are things that are done…you guessed it…on the website. These are things like relevant site headlines and content, an understandable website link structure, and the overall readability of the site (yes, search engines are able to tell if the site makes sense of not).
Off-site SEO are things like the creation and submission of the url and sitemap to search engines for indexing, social bookmarking, and one of the most important, the acquisition of backlinks, or links from other sites to yours. Backlinks are considered by many to be the most important factor in off-site SEO. Google finds these links to your site and if there are a lot of them, looks at your site as if it were an ‘expert’ in the field your site is involved in.
So what are the benefits and downsides of starting an SEO campaign for your business? First, I’ll list a few of the most important benefits. The first thing that comes to mind is the increase in site visibility your site could experience. How many people go back 3 pages in the search engines if they’re looking for something? Not many. Most stop at the end of the first page, and either revise the keyword they’re searching for or give up. Another thing is that once your site is ranked high, the traffic you get to your site is all FREE. No more paying for expensive ads or links to your site. This is why the return on investment is so high for SEO campaigns. So what about the bad stuff? The only two I can think of is the time involved in ranking for these search engines, and the fact that you’re ultimately at the mercy of search engines. Google can’t see all the links to your site, or constantly review your site for changes or additions, so most SEO firms will say that it might take up to 6 months before you notice an increase in rankings, depending on the keyword you’re trying to rank for of course. The second downside is that you’re at the mercy of these search engines. I’ve read multiple articles about how sites that were on the 1st page for months drop to the 3rd page+ after Google released a revision to their search algorithm. People who offer SEO services that guarantee you a #1 ranking are lying. That’s something they can’t guarantee, as Google, Yahoo, or Bing ultimately has the final say, whether you like it or not. What people who offer these services that promise though, is that they will provide these services to the best of their ability, and provide documentation to let you know what they’ve been working on.
I hope that helps clear up a little bit about what SEO is and what it consists of. I have a few more facts about it listed on our SEO page if you’re interested. If you have any questions about the services we offer, don’t hesitate to e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you with an answer. Also, has your business ever had an SEO campaign done for your website? How were the results? Good? Bad? Let us know in the comment section.
Product of Caffeine is now accepting client for the month of November and December! If you’d like to contact us for a quote or for any questions regarding our process and quality of work, please visit our Contact Us page.
Now would be a great time to check out our Marketing Packages and see what could potentially help your business the most. Being a newer business to Colorado, we are dedicated to making a name for ourselves. Please Check out our portfolio but definitely contact us for more information.
We pride ourselves not only in the high quality of the products and services we create and maintain, but also the level of communication and transparency we strive to sustain with our clients. Get a new website today!
I would like to thank you for visiting our new site. Glade and I have been working our butts off to get this web services business up and running (with the help of caffeine, of course), and are very excited to start taking on new clients. If you or someone you know is looking to create a new website, redesign a current one, or gain exposure to your site through online media, don’t hesitate to contact us via our Contact page and tell us all about it.