Learn Search Engine Optimization Lingo to Help Customers Find You on the Web

By Jessica Bates , in Articles, SEO Tips, on March 12, 2012 | 4 comments

NASHVILLE, TN – Every industry has its own jargon. Doctors, marketing executives and journalists tend to speak in different languages when they’re in a room full of peers. The world of search engine optimization is no different. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the unfamiliar terms used in SEO tips and guidelines. Hopefully if you’ve found your way to our blog, then you at least know that SEO stands for “Search Engine Optimization”.

Here, we hope to demystify some of the terms that circulate frequently in SEO-speak. Once you understand the process, you can better develop your SEO strategy.

How People Find Your Site

Analytics shows how traffic finds a specific website. Analytics record how people find you, how long they stay on your site, and how many pages they visit within your website. This information is useful in further marketing your site. We’ve written before on Google Analytics, the free analytic service offered by Google. When a user types in a search query, the SERP is what pops up in response. SERP is an acronym for “Search Engine Results Page”.

Websites don’t appear magically in Google’s index. Or maybe they do! Websites are “crawled” by computer software programs. These crawlers, or spiders, find new and updated webpages and add them to their search engine’s index. Spiders crawl webpages for new content, cataloging keywords and adding new pages to each search engine’s index. Google uses GoogleBot to crawl its search engine, thus making GoogleBot a spider. The pages are collected in an index using over 1 Million computer servers for speedy retrieval, and having your page in an index allows users to potentially find your site through a search query.

Now on to the important explanation of how giving and receiving inbound and outbound links should happen. Building links should happen organically, and the use of link farms and link buying is considered black hat. When you see text on the web that links to a different page, that linked text is called “anchor text”.

The behind-the-scenes programming of your website can also determine how easily people find you. Meta tags are used in HTML, specifically in the <head> section, so that spiders can better categorize websites. Google’s Webmaster Tools gives helpful information on how to use these tags. By outlining your website’s structure in a sitemap, your website can be more easily directed by search engines.

Google utilizes PageRank to give different weights to different websites. It takes into account how many links a website has linking to it, though not all links are created equal. Some links are from more “respectable” sources, and therefore, these links have higher weight. PageRank alone isn’t the deciding factor in whether or not a website has relevant, valuable content.

How You Help People Find Your Site

Adding fresh content to your website helps potential customers find you on the web. Many people use blogs to keep their content fresh. The term “blog” first came from “web log”, as in an online journal or record with regular updates. The term evolved to “blog”. Blogs show the most recently added content at the top of the page, and the older content moves down as new content appears.

Master Google’s CEO Ali Husayni believes that WordPress blogs are an important factor in the SEO game. “Google feeds and survives on content. Google also loves sites that feed it more quality content on a regular basis,” Husayni says.

The best blogs are those that take shape organically, and keywords should follow that rule as well. Keywords are important to SEO, as all relevant websites should stay true to their audience. Keywords can happen organically. If you’re a software engineer, your website should discuss programming, code libraries, and other specific things relevant to your niche.

Black Hat and White Hat SEO

We’ve discussed the differences before, but here’s a refresher:

Black hat SEO is basically any unethical practice in SEO. One black hat technique is implementing hidden text. Hidden text is exactly what it sounds like: If a website’s background is white, hidden text that is stuffed with keywords in a color that is undetectable for people visiting the website. The hidden text is invisible, but it can still be crawled. Adding content that isn’t relevant or helpful to your customers, especially if that content is riddled with unnecessary keywords, is black hat as well. Cloaking is a black hat technique that veils the content that real humans see with keyword-stuffed content that only the spiders can see and crawl. This is considered a deceptive practice.

White Hat SEO is the ideal way to optimize your site for visitors. White hat techniques are organic, and its advocates believe that quality content, relevant linking, keyword analysis, and following search engines guidelines generate steady, meaningful results.

Unless you have loads of extra time to devote to learning SEO, an SEO firm, like our team here at Master Google, is probably the best bet to comprehensively market your business. The SEO game is always changing, and it’s a full time job to keep up with the latest trends. An army of search engine experts can spend more time and expertise optimizing your website for search engines than most entrepreneurs can allow. Contact Master Google to see how our SEO experts can help your business grow.

Retrofoam of Arizona Catches Top Spot in Google Places

SANTA MONICA, CA – The Master Google team is proud to announce another Top of Google Places announcement. The foam insulation company Retrofoam of Arizona has reached #1 on Google Places for “Phoenix Insulation.” Having an active SEO strategy is a vital part of the equation in the formula for business success, according to Retrofoam of Arizona Co-Owner Paul Kariniemi.

“SEO is something I always want to have. We also do radio and TV advertising [and other forms of advertising], and I will always have SEO running in the background,” Kariniemi said.

After all, it takes an active campaign effort to get results. Citing the sometimes maddening truth that there is no way to know exactly which part of your SEO efforts will take you to the top and exactly how long it will take, Kariniemi shared his humorous equation for Internet success:

A strong Internet presence is 1+1=3.

This joke is a great example of why it is so important to understand that Kariniemi’s success didn’t happen overnight. As with past clients, SEO results  took time, and were a part of an intricate plan by Master Google CEO Ali Husayni and the Master Google team. Still, the results happened relatively quickly, and Kariniemi’s comments echoed those of Doug Cooper, the VP of marketing for CariniAir.com, when their site hit #1 on Google Places.

“In a matter of about one to one-and-a-half months, Master Google helped us reach the top spot in the Google Places listing for the air conditioning keywords, while still retaining our #2 spot for heating,” Cooper said.

Reaching the top spot in Google Places is a good example as to why it is important to consider the full SEO picture to evaluate the return on investment, according to Husayni.

“We can precisely measure the increase in site traffic within the time the client signs up for SEO,” Husayni said. “The bottom line is higher ranks on Google result in more targeted traffic, which translates to more sales.”

Husayni continues to enjoy seeing these tangible results for each one of his clients. He advised Kariniemi to continue to work on his Google Places reviews, as the number and quality of the reviews matters for SEO efforts, according to Husayni.

Image Google Places Comic Strip

Comic Courtesy of Kayzoe.com.

To learn how to list your business on Google Places, watch this video for instructions. Once you’re listed, ask your returning customers to write a positive review for your business as Husayni advised Kariniemi to do. After all, the more your listing is rated, the higher your business will place in Google Places rankings. When done well, the combined efforts of an ambitious SEO team and the patience and trust of the client is what makes all the difference, according to Husayni.

“SEO takes the following three things: expertise, hard work, and patience. On average, our clients see the best results within six months to a year after we start a project. When we see results, it proves to us the fact that what we do actually works,” Husayni said.

Having an SEO company on your side that you can trust has been a refreshing experience for Kariniemi, who shared: “With all the used car sales types out there pushing SEO on business owners, I must say it’s been refreshing to deal with true SEO professionals who deliver real, quantifiable results.”

Contact Us to see if your site qualifies, and we look forward to continuing to work with Kariniemi and our other clients.

Becoming the Best SEO Company

By Ali Husayni , in Articles, SEO Tips, on March 6, 2012 | 23 comments

EVERGREEN, CO — The two most important people in anyone’s life are their parents. They are the first two people who start shaping your character and are the ones whose influence are everlasting. To a great extent, we are all products of who our parents are.

Among many things, I have learned honesty, integrity and kindness from my father, but it was my mom who shaped my entrepreneurial spirit and taught me to aim high and work hard to achieve my goals. She is an architect and a very successful entrepreneur herself. She was one of the first women to successfully own and operate a private vocational school in Tehran. She later moved back to the United States and pursued her Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering and is now pursuing her Ph.D. in the same field.

When I was sixteen, I started my first business under her supervision. I signed up a contract to draw some mechanical plans (using AutoCAD). I ended up making the equivalent of $16 and I managed to purchase a pair of jeans for myself. That will always be remembered by me as the best business experience of my life, no matter how much I go on to achieve.

Since then, I have entered and exited a number of business ventures. None of them suited me until I learned about SEO while working at Page1Solutions. In the one year that I worked there, I learned many invaluable business lessons from its Director, Dan Goldstein. When I left, I decided to start Master Google. With no financial backing (except my wife’s credit cards and student loans) and a downward economy, this was a big challenge.

It is thanks to hard work, support from family and friends, and having great employees and clients that we have a profitable SEO company, which is now one of the best in the industry. But that’s not where we want to stop. Aiming high to me means that we plan to become the #1 Google SEO provider in the world by 2018.

What does it mean to be #1?

Any business is given value based upon its profitability as well as revenue, but I want to add customer loyalty, satisfaction and beating our competition in any market as factors into the equation of what it means to be the best.

To become the best, we need to fully understand the big players in our industry, their strengths and what we need to improve upon to achieve our goals. The data below is what I have gathered through Alexa, as well as Top SEO’s.

The table shows where our company stands in comparison to the big SEO players in terms of Alexa rankings (traffic to the site) as well as inbound links. I’m fully aware that these two are not the only criterion for comparing companies. Other factors include sales, client retention rates, achieving SEO goals and having strong guarantees in place, as well as offering a diverse set of services.

According to Alexa, our company ranks above ALL of these companies in terms of traffic to the site. However, when comparing traffic from the US (next table), we rank AFTER most of them.

Due to offering numerous free services, including many SEO articles on our blog, our site has lots of visitors from many countries. We need to however work on attracting US based visitors to our site.

Also our site has less inbound links than most of our competitors (see below). One of our goals is to improve our site’s popularity within the next few years to have more sites refer us by linking to us.

If you’ve read this post, that means you care for our company. We appreciate your support. Please leave us your valuable feedback and what you think we should do to achieve our ‘becoming the best SEO company’ goal.

Building A Site Google Loves: Writing Great Content (Part Two)

By Vonya Griffin , in Articles, SEO Tips, on March 2, 2012 | 12 comments

ORLANDO, FLORIDA — Hopefully part one of Writing Great Content gave you a clear understanding of the main purpose of SEO Copywriting and how to choose relevant, interesting and helpful topics for blog posts, articles and press releases.

Part two will talk about how to include keywords naturally, why paying attention to detail matters, and reveal one of the must-haves needed for your website to do well in Google’s search algorithm. I will also advise you on two mistakes to avoid, which include the most common and deadly of missteps when it comes to ranking well with Google.

Including Keywords Without Sounding Spammy

Good content also includes keywords, but the keywords should flow naturally within the article or press release and be relevant to the piece. If the non-SEO savvy reader can scan an article or press release and pick out the keywords, then the content is not written well enough. Keywords help a search engine decide what pages are most relevant to a search, but readers do not need to be spoon-fed as to what a page is about, according to Ali Husayni.

“Ultimately, humans are more important than the search engine because they are the ones who buy, the ones who will share the content, and the ones who will get you the backlinks to the content, so always strive for a natural tone and relevant topics,” Husayni said.

Husayni uses a team of advanced SEO marketing researchers, the latest analytics reports and specialized formulas to find and prioritize clients’ keyword selection and link building. Businesses can find out their best keywords by doing their own research, or hiring an SEO consultant to analyze current SEO work or an SEO coach to train and hire in-house employees with the techniques they need to be successful.

Give Customers A Glimpse Of The Company’s Character

A company that pays attention to details within their website content is telling readers that they are thorough. People shopping around for services or goods like to know that their needs will be handled by a person or company that is thorough and attentive.

Misspelling and poor grammar are the most common mistakes that companies make in their SEO writing. Lanette Strong, an SEO copywriter, says overlooking details can give the impression that the writer is ignorant or does not care about his or her work. Blatantly false statements made because of lack of research or proofreading make a company look less reputable.

“Research, grammar and spelling are of the utmost importance for blogs,” she says. “You need to have all the facts first, and then re-read the post for grammar and spelling errors.”

Husayni stresses the importance of hiring a professional copywriter who is a native English-speaker.

“You are creating content to show your expertise in your particular field, and you don’t want to hinder your efforts because you don’t write well in English,” Husayni said.

Master Google’s Editor-in-Chief Lorrie Walker says this is an obstacle that is easily overcome with the help of an English-speaking writer. A professional copywriter helps companies and businesspeople accurately portray their knowledge and professional image.

The Freshness Component: Don’t Leave Your Blog Without It

Google loves fresh content. They recently added a component to their search algorithm that takes into account how recently information was published when determining how relevant it is to certain search queries.

Husayni suggests, “Site owners should write for their sites on a regular basis. The more you post fresh, quality and relevant content on a site, the more you improve the odds of exposure and inclusion on Google search results.”

A regular basis could mean once every month or every other day, but the most benefit comes from posting often because of Google’s freshness algorithm. Google wants to give searchers the most relevant and up-to-date results on a topic.

Companies debating their number of postings should consider their purpose for the articles, according to Walker, who is also the owner of a public relations firm in Lakeland, Florida.

“If you’re just writing for search engines, you might get the results you want from three ‘OK’ articles,” she said. “But if you want customers, you have to provide relevant, quality content that will encourage people to read on and take action.”

Plagiarism Can Be Deadly For RankingsMagnifying Glass Picture

Filling a website with interesting content is the goal, but the content has to be original, not copied from other sources.

Walker says the biggest mistake people make when it comes to SEO content generation is seeing similar sites and loving the content, then simply copying it to their own website.

Google views that as duplicate content, and they penalize sites that copy. Readers do not appreciate copied content either and can quickly deem a site not worth reading if it is just regurgitating content they have seen before.

“Strive to enlighten the clients or patients instead of rehashing material over and over again,” Husayni said. “And never copy and paste material directly to your own website.”

What creating the best SEO content comes down to is a balancing act. There are certain components that must be included, but the process is fluid. To be successful, companies and writers must be flexible and make continuous adjustments to keep everything working together to accomplish the goal of building a site that Google loves.

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Owner of The Content Factory Shares Advice for Writing Content That Sells

By , in Articles, SEO Tips, on February 29, 2012 | 3 comments

SANTA MONICA, CA – At Master Google, we have gone so far as to say that quality content matters so much that our SEO efforts are nothing… without a WordPress Blog (or wp-content). The importance of great content is crucial to a successful business, according to Kari DePhillips, the owner of The Content Factory. DePhillips said that her standards are very detailed when it comes to the quality of work expected from the writers on her team. After all, good or average work is not work that will set your website apart from the masses.

Set High Standards and Stick to Them to See Sales Soar

Your writing is your website’s silent salesman, the face of your website, and it ultimately converts browsers into buyers, according to DePhillips. She pointed out that website copy is in fact the most important employee of The Content Factory, and arguably of every other business that has a website, whether they realize it or not.

“You want that salesman to be amazing, because it’s likely going to interact with more potential clients and customers on a daily basis than everyone at your entire company, combined,” DePhillips said. “Whether that employee helps or hinders your business is entirely up to your writer, and up to you as the ultimate editor of the content.”

With writing taking such prominence in the world of great content, it is important to raise the bar up to a very high standard and put rules and practices in place to make sure that the quality sustains itself over time, according to DePhillips. After all, content produced by your company speaks to your company louder than any other sales tool you have.

“There are a bunch of different factors that all add up to great content, and if you have just one or two missing, the content will be downgraded to good or average,” DePhillips said.

DePhillips shared the basic building blocks of great content as defined by her standards for the writers working at The Content Factory. The goal of following the standards provided in the list is ultimately maximizing linkability, which means a big potential spike in readership, according to DePhillips.

“If you wouldn’t share your content with your network, chances are pretty good that nobody else will want to, either. You want your content to be as sharable as possible, because it’s going to result in more likes, tweets, +1s [for Google+], and clicks to your website,” DePhillips said.

Piggy Bank

Image Courtesy of Webylife.com

The Content Factory Standards for Great Content

    1. Extremely Catchy Title (preferably with a keyword): When your articles come up in Google search results pages, the title is almost all the reader has to go off of — and your article’s title is up against at least nine others on the page. If you rank #3 but your title is significantly better than #1 and #2, you’ll get more clicks. Titles really, really matter.
    2. Grabby First Sentence (also, preferably with a keyword): Internet users have ADD, whether they realize it or not. There are tons of shiny links to distract them and take them away from the page that you spent hours writing. So, you have to grab their interest and keep it — from the very first sentence. People usually figure out whether they want to read the rest of the article before they finish the first paragraph. If you make that first paragraph awesome, you’ll get ‘em hooked and they’ll keep reading (and you’ll see a spike in the time they spend on your site).
    3. Interesting, Funny or Informative Subject Matter: Before you come up with a must-click title or killer first sentence, you have to choose a subject to write about and figure out how you’re going to present the information. Nobody wants to read another iteration of what they’ve already seen a dozen times. If you don’t have new info to work with, you’ve got to be clever with how you present it. This goes a long way toward increasing the sharability of the article. These days, having people share your content should definitely be a top goal.
    4. Clean Copy: Did you really mean discreet when you said discrete? Was the wrong kind of they’re/their/there, your/you’re or it’s/its used? People who know better will be turned off by errors like that, and they definitely won’t want to pass the content on to a friend. Errors will silently kill your copy.
    5. Clean Formatting: The engineers, mathematicians and magicians at Google have trained the search engine to look for (and like) the same things that people like, so the content should be formatted appropriately. Don’t have 14-line long paragraphs, break up your copy with bold subheads and bulleted or numbered lists. The article should be organized in a logical way, and bolded subheads should be used as new ideas are introduced.

Great Content and SEO are Friends Not Foes

In a relatively recent blog post predicting the future of SEO, we quoted Richard J. Tofe’s article and his prediction about the end of SEO.

“Someday, the sun will set on SEO — and the business of news will be better for it,” Tofe said. “I look toward a future when search engine optimization has been rendered obsolete by advancing technology… [and] the implications for news.”

Tofe continued to say that placing a value on higher quality content and maintaining a committed readership and customer base would ultimately matter more than any other factors that most SEO companies have focused on. This is where Master Google differs from the rest, as quality content in regards to SEO has always been a big part of the mission of the company, according to Master Google’s CEO, Ali Husayni. Husayni understands that quality content is what provides longevity, not any kind of shortcut attempted by the use of black hat SEO techniques.

“While the role of SEO is constantly evolving, and there are those disreputable companies that may not survive, the use of SEO with quality Web content is solid,” Husayni said. “Google will always need white hat SEO, and is always going to be fighting black hat SEO.””

There is in fact an opportunity for SEO companies that maintain high standards of content and quality search results to get the recognition that they deserve for their clients, according to Husayni.

“If SEOs that practice higher standards rise to the top, and content farms and SEO companies that are low quality sink, that’s all right with us,” Husayni said.

DePhillips agrees with Husayni that there is great satisfaction in rising to the top of Google by producing quality work.

“There’s something really satisfying about taking ho-hum copy, throwing it out and building a new web presence from the ground up,” DePhillips said. “To me, there’s nothing cooler than when the client is thrilled with the content we’ve written and Google Analytics proves that it’s working significantly better than the old content.”

SEO Expert Reports: How To Use Social Media Marketing for Successful SEO

By , in Analysis, Articles, SEO Tips, on February 27, 2012 | 3 comments

SANTA MONICA, CA – As a writer and administrative assistant to the CEO of an SEO company that provides its customers with the tools for landing a top spot on the first page of Google, I have had the chance to meet many experts in the fields of search engine optimization and social media marketing. By working with them, I have learned that to master google, you must understand the many different factors required for effective Google SEO. Blog optimization is one important factor, but so is making sure that the online audience engages in the conversation, hence our constant examining of social media importance. After all, I have found myself repeatedly seeking new answers to these two recurring questions: how effective is social media marketing (SMM) for the bottom line and why does it matter for SEO?

Seeking some fresh insight, I decided to talk to an expert with a writing and marketing background similar to mine, Aaron Smyk, who is the Director of Web Marketing for Transparent Corporation. Before I delve into the details of what Transparent Corp. has done with SMM, I must first join with Smyk in issuing a disclaimer regarding my ‘new’ findings. Setting out to prove the effectiveness of social media marketing is nothing ‘new’, and has actually been the topic of countless debates over the years. One of the earliest and most public discussions took place at the Search Marketing Expo in Seattle, where moderator Danny Sullivan introduced the importance of SMM to SEO efforts.

Facebook Fans SEO

Image Courtesy of Kirkmktgblog.com.

“Search engine optimizers really need to understand social media. Social media traffic is great for a site. A lot of people are going to social media sites and are doing a basic behavior of discovery,” Sullivan said.

Rand Fishkin of SEOMoz.org pointed to YouTube as an example of the power of Social Media Marketing.

“What can viral media marketing do for you? Do you remember when there was no YouTube? In December of 2005, YouTube became more popular in a month. What did that? Lazy Sunday from Saturday Night Live was put there, and now YouTube dominates the market. Viral media gives you the ability to brand. Viral media causes search rankings through links. Viral media means that you are growing your fan base. RSS subscribers go up,”  Fishkin said.

New Money Making Opportunities With Social Media Marketing Platforms

Over the years, the effectiveness of SMM has lead to a plethora of online opportunities that just didn’t exist before, and they range from gaining clients and readers to finding a job. Sites that were once used primarily for link bait are now bringing job opportunities to the attention of qualified applicants.

Reddit is how Smyk became the Director of Web Marketing for Transparent Corporation, a developer of software aimed toward neural stimulation, mental training and biofeedback. Serving over 100 countries, Transparent’s products are used by therapists, businesses, M.D.’s, teachers, academic researchers and the masses. Smyk was immediately interested in the position and was happy to talk about the value of sites like Reddit.

“There is a sort of common culture that unites people on that site, and I think having that common base of interests carried over really nicely into this role,” Smyk said.

The Overlap Between SEO and SMM: Getting Results By Combining Them

Smyk has witnessed the overlap between SEO and SSM and said that while it has been hard for him to tell which set of techniques is more effective on their own, good content will always provide better SEO results.

“It’s a hazy area… is a site ranking well because they have lots of ‘likes’ on Facebook? Or is it ranking well because that content is good, has been linked to extensively, and as a result, has also picked up a bunch of positive social stats?” Smyk asked rhetorically, adding his opinion. “If something does well on a social platform, that shows you that you’ve created something that is actually meeting a need and getting attention, and also increases the exposure to that content.”

Jumping on the social media bandwagon is a topic that Master Google has been addressing from the beginning, and this fact remains the same: you need to have a Facebook account and a fan page for your business, says Master Google CEO Ali Husayni.

“You need to encourage your friends to ‘like’ the page, and you must post useful information, videos and photos to it on a regular basis,” Husayni said.

Of course, Google+ has come into the picture and provided another social media marketing platform.

Google+ Brings New Opportunities

In a recent blog post about Google+, we talked about how the benefits of Google plus are many, and if you don’t have a Google+ account, you are strongly advised to get one.

“It’s a real step in the right direction. They needed to have it from the get-go,” Husayni said.

Smyk sees the value in Google+ for business, but notes that Google+ has its limits.

“Google+ is a completely different story… a single +1 can have a huge impact on how that page is presented in Google SERPs, but that is only if you’re signed into Google,” Smyk said. “Safe to say, if your audience appears to be using Google Plus, you need to have a strategy for it by now.”

Smyk also made an important note about the role of SMM in his line of work, stating that everyone in the SEO industry should be keeping an eye on social media marketing, as best practices in the area are constantly evolving. Husayni agrees that SMM is evolving just as SEO is.

“As SEO continually evolves, so does the need for a dedicated team ready to meet the demands of an ever-changing market. After all, getting to the top of Google takes determination, hard work and a little bit of patience,” Husayni said. “You may not have the budget for a full-scale SEO campaign if you’re just starting out, but having an SEO consultant to get you started may very well be within your budget and well worth the expense.”

Apple Buys Chomp: Is your App’s Page Optimized for Search Engines?

By Jessica Bates , in Articles, News, SEO Tips, on February 24, 2012 | Comments off

NASHVILLE, TN – TechCrunch reported on February 23 that Apple acquired Chomp, a company founded in 2010 to provide a search engine for mobile apps. They started solely with improving iPhone app results, and in 2011 they expanded to the Android market.

Android and iPhone users can download the free Chomp app to search for apps with better results than simply using the respective mobile stores. Apple’s website states that more than 500,000 apps are on the App Store, but finding them is as daunting as finding a needle in a haystack. If you know the app you’re searching for by name, or if it’s a big corporation’s app like Twitter or Facebook, you’ll probably find what you need. But if you’re searching for something like “simulation games” or “fabric stash” or “hidden object”, your results may be murky.

Apple Chomp ImageThere are blogs that feature popular and underground-sensation apps, but why can’t we just search for them? Google makes it so incredibly easy to find information on anything that we get spoiled. We take it for granted. We wonder why these app markets doesn’t just know what we want.

Chomp’s algorithm reads an app’s specific functions, optimizing the results that users see. Even if the app has an obscure name, Chomp will be able to categorize it for you, to tell you what it’s for. This information is compiled just like Google compiles its index – by crawling. Chomp gives developers the chance to submit an app to their directory, but eventually they’ll get to it on their own. Their website states:

“Chomp’s advanced app crawling technology will automatically find and index your app once it is published to the Android Market, iTunes App Store or the Verizon V CAST Android store. However if you want to help us find it as fast as possible, you can submit your app below. You may also add keywords that describe your app.”

On Chomp’s website, visitors can see analytics for mobile Chomp users, which I personally find pretty awesome. For January 2012, 81% of Chomp searches for iOS apps were for the app’s function; only 19% of searches were for the app’s name. On the Android Chomp searches, only 14% of users searched for an app by name, while the remaining 86% was only searching in terms of function.

And now, with Apple’s acquisition of Chomp, it’s expected that the Chomp team will transform the Apple App Store into something organic, something that can read your mind. So why would an SEO company like Master Google really care? Why all the talk about mobile apps?

If your company has an app, your app’s description page now needs to be optimized for search engines, as Chomp is providing better results than you can see on the iOS or Android app stores.

The implementation of SEO in the app world is long overdue. Hopefully, with Apple’s acquisition of this two-year old search engine app and algorithm superstar, the App Store will step up their results to better serve their customers.

If you’re in the market for an SEO expert – for your website, blog, or app description page – Contact Us to see if the Master Google team can deliver results.

How to Combat Negative Reviews and Comments about Your Company

By Lorrie Walker , in Analysis, Articles, SEO Tips, on February 23, 2012 | No comments

TAMPA, FLORIDA — Perhaps Charles Dickens said it best in A Tale of Two Cities: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”

That is how many business owners feel about Google Places and other sources on the Internet that enable people to write reviews or leave comments about businesses. Favorable comments about your product or service can be one of the best ways to build your reputation. Negative comments can have some of the worst repercussions.

Let’s get this out of the way first: your chances of removing a negative review from Google Places are slim. Check out Google’s information on that popular question here. One way to combat the bad press is to use the “flag as inappropriate” option, in which case Google will look into the review to determine whether it violates Google’s guidelines.

So what else can you do when someone slams your business in a review? Growmap.com has a great example of how one business handled it. In short, a company that sells woodworking tools and educational materials got a negative review from a disgruntled customer. The CEO sent out an email blast to its customers that outlined the circumstances surrounding the disgruntled customer and provided a link to the negative complaint, which he answered, the Grow Map article states.

Additionally, he included a link to his company’s Google Places page so satisfied customers could leave their own reviews “so others would have a more balanced view” of the company, the article states. It wasn’t long before the negative review was buried by dozens of favorable reviews.

“No company is perfect, and an occasional negative review should be anticipated,” says Ali Husayni, CEO of Master Google, which specializes in marketing medical practices. “This CEO took a proactive approach to this discouraging situation and I would say he turned a negative into a positive.”

Looking at the situation strategically, you want to drown your negative reviews with positive ones. Essentially, having 50 favorable reviews to one negative one will work in your favor, according to Matthew Loop, a social media and Internet marketing expert.

Dilbert Comic Strip Multiple experts say it is wise to respond directly to a negative review, which you can do if you’ve claimed your Google Places listing. Be careful how you reply, though. Pop off a response in anger and you’re likely to do more harm than good. A professional, courteous response is what you want to shoot for.

In addition to knowing how to respond to a negative review, it’s important to understand just how important good reviews are to your business and more specifically, your website. Favorable reviews paint a favorable opinion of your business when potential customers find your Google Places page, according to Alex Eaton at Energypro.com. In terms of businesses’ overall SEO plans, the more reviews there are, the better businesses do in organic search results.

It’s also important to note that your Google Places page will list reviews from sources other than just Google places. It pulls reviews from sites including Yelp, Urban Spoon and Insider Pages, to name a few.

“I view this as yet another example of how Google constantly works to make user experiences better,” says Husayni, who works to achieve top SEO results for clients by offering guidance on how to manage their Google Places listings. “Pulling in reviews and comments from multiple sources gives those in search of information a broad picture of the company they are researching.”

I think Chris Robinson over at Giantseed Creative says it best when talking about negative reviews: “We can’t control the conversations taking place on social media platforms, but we can monitor and respond to what is being said.”

In closing, remember these key tips:

  • Monitor your reviews
  • Truly take note of what is being said
  • Respond professionally and compassionately
  • Take action if you believe a review is spammy or malicious in nature
  • By all means, reach out to your happy clients and customers and ask them to give their honest feedback.

I’m convinced if you take this approach, you can’t go wrong.

Why Google Likes White Hat SEO: How To Use SEO Tactics Effectively

By , in Articles, SEO Tips, on February 21, 2012 | 13 comments

SANTA MONICA, CA – Sometimes SEO gets a bad reputation. Naysayers are correct that there are two types of SEO strategies that are indeed bad for business, and those are gray hat and black hat SEO tactics. Gray hat SEO includes tactics such as reciprocal links, buying old or expired domains, and Google bombing/washing. Black hat techniques are even worse for business and include tactics ranging from keyword stuffing, using link farms, comment spamming and more.

Since Google can so easily spot these tactics, why do companies use black hat and gray hat SEO techniques? For starters, those tactics take less time. White hat techniques require creating quality content, careful site optimization, link baiting, guest blogging, internal linking and more. These techniques take a considerable amount of time, which is why to effectively use SEO tactics, you must hire an SEO team with a positive track record.

SEO Hats

Image Courtesy of Itsabacus.com.

Master Google only uses white hat SEO tactics because it is the only way to go for successful SEO, according to Ali Husayni, the CEO of Master Google. Husayni said to heed the warning of Google’s anti-spam strategy as your rankings will rise and fall accordingly to how well you implement the correct SEO strategies.

“The only thing not changing with SEO is that it’s always changing,” Husayni said. “Be diligent in keeping up with those changes as [you handle your] site’s SEO, or partner with a qualified SEO provider to handle that task.”

When done correctly, SEO is not spam at all, but a good tactic that Google recognizes, according to Google Software Engineer and head of Google’s web spam fighting team, Matt Cutts. Watch the video below to hear Cutts explain why Google appreciates SEO when done well.

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A focused SEO plan is a never-ending job, but one that will greatly increase the likelihood that your customers will find you on Google. Contact Us to see if we can provide SEO services for your website.

Easy Ways to Promote Your Blog: How To Make Your Blog More Popular Today

By , in Articles, SEO Tips, on February 20, 2012 | 1 comment

SANTA MONICA, CA – I received an urgent email from a friend this morning. She is extremely frustrated because her WordPress blog hasn’t been getting as much traffic as she has been hoping for. This is a common complaint that I have received from blog writers who have yet to benefit from understanding WordPress as it relates to SEO. Her question was straightforward but urgent in delivery:

“How do I make my blog better and more popular, and how do I get more people to read my blog posts?”

While ‘better’ is a subjective word, there are a plethora of things that you can do to improve your blog’s SEO for free, simply by using some basic tactics that don’t take very long to implement at all. Most of them are a matter of changing old habits and misconceptions. Below are three good starting points to make your WordPress blog more SEO friendly, interesting and ultimately more readable. The best part is that they are all things that you can start doing today.

Use Videos and Images in Your Blog to Attract More Readers

Courtesy of zenzi.com


We recently touted the importance of using videos and images in blog posts, which can help your site rank higher. Be sure to title your images correctly, as we discussed in a recent post about image SEO. Adding other media to your website can increase functionality for your users and, more importantly, help them find you. Want to know how Googlebot sees your images and videos? View your website in Lynx, a text-based browser. The more you take advantage of video and images (within reason), the more readership you are likely to receive.

Update Your Content Regularly with Quality Posts That People Want to Read

Yes, Master Google has repeated this point several times, but when it comes to SEO and blogs, quality content is king. I really can’t stress that point enough and it is especially true for blog posts. Don’t write for search engines, write for what audiences will search for. Be aware, though, that blogs are often crawled faster by Google than websites themselves, according to Google Software Engineer Matt Cutts, who talked about the importance of noting that any change to your blog can help or hurt your site in big ways in the video below.

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The challenge is to continually provide engaging content for your specific audience. The shifting of audiences leads me to a great point made about the importance of remembering that your audience might change frequently and you need to be prepared, according to a recent article posted on Business2Community.com.

Keep Track of Who Your Audience Is and Remain Relevant to That Audience

It is important to remember that audiences change, depending on factors ranging from your competition to your field of business. CEO Ali Husayni agrees that targeted writing is key, and recently talked about the importance of knowing your competition.

“If you are competing with strong rivals, you can have an advantage over them by simply writing and posting articles on your site’s blog on a regular basis. ‘Regular basis’ is a loose term – for some smaller businesses, writing once a month gives you that advantage. But the reality is that for most e-commerce sites, writing once a day may still not be enough. So, depending on your market, you need to decide how often you want to write,” Husayni said.

Remember, these blog tips can help you tremendously, but to get to a top spot with Google and stay there, hiring an SEO expert is the best way to ensure that you take your business to the next level, according to Husayni.

“You may not have the budget for a full-scale SEO campaign if you’re just starting out, but some time with an SEO consultant to get you started may be within your budget and well worth the expense,” Husayni said. “Call the office for a free consultation to find out.” Click here to contact us about our services.