5 Most Inspirational SEO Trainers In The World [infographic]

Our mini “5 most inspirational people” series continues. This time is about the most powerful SEO trainers in the world (at least in our opinion). There are so many out there that it’s hard to choose even 5 of them.

Probably you already know about our Udemy Course: Content Marketing by Squirrly Academy. We were curious to see other amazing trainers and take a look at who we found out. They are amazing people and you should take a look at their courses.

The most powerful seo trainers are:

 5 most inspirational seo trainers in the world

Have you ever attended one of their courses? They have really interesting training courses. You can check them out on Udemy and their personal sites.

Do you have other SEO trainers in your lists?


Also, if you want to review the other infographics, here you can find them:

5 Most Inspirational Bloggers In The World

5 Most Inspirational Bloggers In Asia

5 Most Inspirational Bloggers In Content Marketing World

3 things to learn from the most successful startups

I’ve already spoken to you about Successful startups. From dream to reality!. I told you how easy it can be to make your dream come true, by putting some few tips about content marketing, SEO, influencers, investments, etc. to good use.

Now, we all blink in ecstasy when we hear the great name of the glamorized success: SILICON VALLEY. What people love is the all encompassing, on the spot, wild success. When it comes to the “been there, done that” successful startups’ list, I guess Dave Kerpner has a point in saying: “Building a sustainable business takes more than a good idea.” (Read more…)

3 successful startups. Lesson taught. Lesson learned

successful startups

I want to go into 3 of his examples and provide you a detailed lesson of success. I want to show you how you can catch the gold fish of startups.

  • Kaltura. It is an open-source video platform. It enables its clients to host, manage, publish, monetize, analyze and distribute video content. It offers a wide range of video products across several areas, such as publishing, education and enterprise. It has also launched a new Media Go product, which allows clients to create their own Netflix-like video portal across multiple devices. Lesson taught: Target and cater for several niches: enterprise, education and media. Kaltura has built specific features and taken care of the needs of each of these fields. As they say on their site: “Over 300,000 websites are already using Kaltura’s flexible platform”, including Groupon, Bank of America, Harvard and HBO. They have recently raised $25 million.  Lesson learned: Don’t try to catch all the fish in the water, set in bait for only a few species.

     

  • Voxy. It is definitely one of the most successful startups. It is a mobile app that helps Spanish speakers learn English through bite-size, daily lessons based on real-life experiences. They wish to address the needs of each learner, as they know that no two people are the same. So, they personalize each of their courses to suit the needs of their clients. They update the courses on a daily basis and they offer pragmatic and realistic learning, by providing users with videos of people going along their daily tasks, audio recordings of real-life situations, and karaoke-like music lessons. They also provide up-to-date news stories, so as the learners can perfect a contemporary use of English. Lesson taught: Stick to your principles. Voxy could have expanded their service to other languages, but they decided to stay focused on teaching English, particularly to Spanish speakers. “By keeping this focus, Voxy has established great presence on the market and has over 3 million users and $15 million in funding.” Lesson learned: When you catch the gold fish, don’t trade it for any other.

     

  • Pandora. It is a personalized music-recommendation service, but it’s only available in the United States, Australia and New Zealand. It plays musical selections based on the user’s artists selection. When it has to select future songs, it does so by making use of the feedback provided by the user, be it positive or negative. Over 400 different musical attributes are considered when selecting the next songs, which are combined into larger groups called focus traits. In total, there are 2000 focus traits, such as rhythm syncopation, key tonality, vocal harmonies, and displayed instrumental proficiency. Lesson taught: Offer personalization. You benefit from a personalized listening experience, music selected just for you, so you enjoy a unique experience. Pandora is expected to raise $231 million in the sale of 10 million shares. Lesson learned: Design your gold fish’s water bowl.

What all of Dave Kerpner’s 10 Wildly Successful Startups teach us is that you don’t have to come from Silicon Valley to be great and successful. It takes something else. What do you think this is?

How to control crawling with robots.txt

What is crawling? Avoid it by using robots.txt.

When users surf the web, content is made available for them by search engines through 2 main ways: crawling and indexing.

The former takes place when search engine crawlers access publicly available webpages. So, it basically involves looking at the webpages and following the links on those pages.

Indexing, on the other hand, means gathering information about a page, so that it is made available through search engine results.

The problem with crawling is that sometimes you might not want to allow crawlers to access areas of your website. Such is the case with accessing pages that use limited server resources. That’s why you might want to use the robots.txt file.

What is the robots.txt file and why is it so important?

It is a text file which allows you to specify how you’d like your site to be crawled. Crawlers generally go through the robots.txt file from your website, before they crawl it. The robots.txt file is so great because you can specify which parts can and cannot be crawled.

It’s so important because it allows you to control access to the files and directories on your server. It’s like an electronic NO TRESPASSING sign. It tells the Googlebot and other crawlers which files and directories on your server should not be crawled (nor displayed in search engine results).

What is the file’s location?

In order for it to be valid, it must be located on the root of the website host.

For example, in order to control crawling on all URLs below http://www.yoursite.com/, the robots.txt file must be located at: http://www.yoursite.com/robots.txt.

A robots.txt file can be placed on subdomains: http://website.yoursite.com/robots.txt) or on non-standard ports: http://yoursite.com:8181/robots.txt, but it cannot be placed in a subdirectory: http://yoursite.com/pages/robots.txt.

 Add a robots.txt file to your webiste

It’s really easy to do it and I have a great source for you. Click here to learn how to create the file: http://www.robotstxt.org/robotstxt.html . You’ll find all the needed information.

If you want to re-check it, click here: http://www.frobee.com/robots-txt-check

And we’re done! Hope your robots.txt file will prevent your site for gathering unneeded annoying crawling!

The Social Media SEO Trick to Get More Traffic via Social Networks

With their humongous user counts, main social media networks seem like traffic gold mines.

But, the promise of thousands of users or followers comes with a downside – how are they supposed to get to all the content you’re publishing, appreciate it and maybe – hopefully! – eventually, convert?

The key concept I’m going to give you is this: “social media SEO”.

That’s right, SEO optimization is not just for the “overt” search engines like Google and Bing. Social networks also employ their own search algorithms, so the whole «great social presence will automatically gain me lots of brand awareness» rhetoric will only bring you disappointment.

Throw great, hard-worked content out there in the social tangle just like that and you’re practically asking your target audience to look for a needle in the haystack. Which, of course, they don’t have the time and the willingness to do.

So, before putting your AdWords or remarketing campaign in place, there is another step to be completed: taking into account the most basic elements of your shared content.

Like links, for instance. Or meta description. Or author display.

Simple tweaks like these could be decisive in getting a social traffic boost. So, it’s time I disclose the social media SEO trick you need to employ, in order to drive more people to click on your shared content.

It’s called the Open Graph Protocol and it grants you control over the look of your content on social platforms.

Making sure you have this Social Media SEO element within the overall SEO strategy is one step further towards driving the traffic you need from social networks.

social media seo

Understanding Social Objects

Just like a smart shopfront which compels passers-by without them realizing it, a neat social profile makes it easy for readers to notice your posts.

And by ‘neat’ I actually mean ‘flawless’. No weird-looking links, no inaccurate thumbnails, no issues within the social graph structure.

laptop-mockup

Social Graph is basically another name for Social Network. In other words, a map encompassing all its user interactions on social media, a medium which displays “social objects” like:

  1. media items
  2. properties (e.g. websites)
  3. links

For these objects to be ‘share’-able across websites and social networks, there needs to be a data structure enabling the whole process.

The connection between this structure and other websites is the Open Graph protocol.

What it essentially does is it takes object-related details and passes them to the graph. These details called Open Graph tags are necessary for an ‘object’ to be added to the social graph.

I know, it seems a tad too abstract. So let’s take a basic example.

You have your most recent blog post. The elements you’ll need Open Graph tags for are:

title
thumbnail
description
preview data

They will need to be integrated within social networks’ native environment. Otherwise, your shared link would look somehow like a nagging banner ad – something no one likes, right?

You’d want something like this:

social media seo

The Open Graph Protocol

“The Open Graph protocol enables any website to become a rich object in a social graph. For instance, this is used on Facebook to allow any web page to have the same functionality as any other object on Facebook.” – Opg.me

A rich object is an element (your website) which presents the same attributes as any object which is proprietary of Facebook. It allows for seamlessly integrating your webpage into the News Feed, so that you get a better representation of your content.

The second you paste a URL in your status box, Facebook starts searching for that page. It finds the page and it reads it.

It reads the meta tag which provides the image, title and a short snippet which gets shown in the post you’re sharing. Meta tags provide information relevant to search engines.

There are 5 attributes:

content
http-equiv
name
scheme
charset

They help Facebook find attributes of the content meta-tag to help it read the article properly.

Without the use of Open Graph, the Facebook crawler takes just the basics of your content to share and doesn’t get you the proper distribution or insights gathering.

Tags, Properties, and Other Attributes

Open Graph Meta tags were introduced by Facebook in 2010. What they do is they allow other websites to become rich “graph” objects and to function as other Facebook objects.

social media seo

So, you can control how information travels from a website to Facebook when you share a page, like it etc. The information is sent via Open Graph Meta tags in the <head> part of the website’s code.

Squirrly SEO will grab the data from your Page/Post content and will build the Open Graph, so that each social share will represent your article type.

In case you notice your URLs are not displayed as rich objects, you can check them in the Facebook for Developers section to check whether you have the right parameters set up.

The 8 Tags to Rule Social Media SEO

8 tags, one condition. The condition is you need to put them in the header of your page.

og:title – Pretty self-explanatory. You put your article title here.

og title

og:site_name – Your website’s name.

og:description – A short description about the linked content. Think of it as a google snippet.

og description, site name

og:url – The pages URL. Note that this acts like an identifier for Facebook’s crawler, so having the canonical URL allows you to track your links progress with analytics tools.

og url

og:image – The image associated with your article. It’s obligatory your image is .JPEG and has a size of at least 200×200. For the best results, your image should have a ratio of 1.91:1, otherwise Facebook will crop it or even worse revert to a less visible link preview.

og image

fb:app_id – The unique ID which lets Facebook know the identity of your site. This is crucial for Facebook Insights to work properly. Here’s a link to their documentation in case you want to learn more.

og fb app id

og:type – Specifies the type of media you’re linking. In our case, it’s an article.

og type

article: author – Links to the author of the article. It can link to either his Facebook Profile or Facebook Page. This allows for ‘expanding the current follower base of the author’.

These are the basics which will offer you a welcome social media boost.

If you want to go even further with Open-Graph, Opg.me has a list of all the currently available meta tags supported by Facebook.

One Setting, No Social Shares Trouble

As marketers, control is what we could very well use in our lives.

social media seo

It all starts with the attention we’re paying to details – and social media SEO is one of them. Checking that you have the Open Graph Protocol all set is pretty much the foundation of your social media marketing edifice.

Weave your posts in the social fabric and don’t allow any loose ends. A simple SEO setting will do the job and will make sure no reader is dissuaded from clicking on those links you worked so hard for.

In Squirrly SEO Plugin, here’s how you can take charge of your social-driven traffic, with a simple setting:

Control your brand to the smallest of details! 

In fact, at Squirrly, this is what we’re constantly working towards: helping everyone become #BetterMarketers with swift integrations and handy features.

Not long ago did we launch the latest, Quick Squirrly SEO, which also helps with your Open Graph integration. If you don’t already have it installed, you might want to click here and give it a try. It has never been easier for you to manage on-page SEO right from the WordPress editor.

41 FREE Marketing Tools that Are Actually Worth Your Time

41 FREE Marketing Tools that Are Actually Worth Your TimeIt’s hardly a secret: Tools are of excellent use when it comes to getting online marketing work done faster and often with less effort on your part.

But, at first glance, the say the best things in life are free doesn’t seem to apply to tools.

Free marketing tools that actually deliver results are often labeled the same as non-fattening chocolate or time travel – too good to be true. 

Brighten up. There’s good news coming your way.

The tools mentioned in this article cover a variety of different uses and needs. They will help you:

  • Save time
  • Work more efficiently
  • Be more consistent

And they have one more thing common.  They won’t cost you a cent! I hope you’re excited. I know FREE makes me happy.

So let’s get to it then.

The tools you need for content creation

1. SEO: Squirrly Plugin

free marketing tools

Want content that is both SEO-optimized and human-friendly? In other words, do you want your content to be appreciated by both Google and your human readers? Was that a Yes? Well, download Squirrly SEO now and increase your site ranking for free. See what’s included in our free plan.

See all the Squirrly SEO 2016 features here. Needless to say, we think it’s awesome.

2. Text Editor: Hemingway

free marketing tools

Hemingway app is an excellent tool to help make your writing bold and clear so that readers can easily navigate and understand your content. The app highlights dense, complicated sentences and unnecessary use of adverbs, among others.

3. Keyword Research: Ubersuggest

free marketing tools

You can use Ubbersuggest to find new keywords. Useful for SEO, PPC, and content marketing campaigns. The app also offers an easy way to visualize the most common terms associated with your query via “the world cloud” feature.

4. Design: Pic Monkey

free marketing tools

The app helps you create better images to illustrate your blog posts, stay active on your social media accounts, keep your site looking fresh, and more.

What’s great about Pic Monkey is that you don’t have to be a professional to make the most out of it. You can edit photos, make collages, and create attention-grabbing designs as fast as a monkey can eat a banana.

5. Video: Wistia

free marketing tools

Video and YouTube have almost become synonyms. But if you’re looking for a less competitive platform, Wistia is an alternative you should consider. Whether you want to improve your video marketing or just need a basic video hosting solution, you should check out Wistia.

6. Blogging: WordPress

free marketing tools

Maybe the most popular free marketing tool in the toolbox, WordPress couldn’t miss from our list.

Running your website or blog via WordPress is not only cost-efficient, but it also offers an easy way to build a new landing page to support your projects and strategies.

Also, there are many widgets, plugins, and themes to help you easily customize your site. Go WordPress!

7. Title Generator: Blog Topic Generator

free marketing tools

Content ideas – we could all use more of those, right? If you need inspiration, you should check out Hubspot’s blog topic generator. Simply write down the terms you’d like to write about. The tool will automatically generate several blog post titles you can choose from.

8. Grammar Checker: Grammarly

free marketing tools

No tool can replace a human editor. However, Grammarly – we’re talking about the free version here – is pretty good at spotting writing errors. It checks for grammatical, spelling, and punctuation mistakes. It does a pretty decent job at spotting verbosity.

9. Market Research: Answer the Public

free marketing tools

Any marketers’ desired superpower is to read their audience’s minds. This tool won’t exactly turn you into a psychic.

However, it will give you a hint of the motivations and emotions of the people you’re targeting. Enter a keyword, and the tool will give you a report of the most common questions people have regarding your query.

10. Content Ideas: Portent’s Content Idea Generator

free marketing tools

Stumped for ideas? This fun and easy-to-use tool can help you overcome writer’s block and get you excited about writing a new piece. What we like about this tool – besides the fact that it’s free – is its humor and creativity. Give it a try; you’ll see what I’m talking about.

11. Headline Analyzer: CoShedule

free marketing tools

Want more traffic to your blog, more click-throughs, and more social shares for your articles? Sure you do. This tool supports those goals by helping you write compelling headlines.

You just enter the title of your post, and the tool will grade its quality based on several criteria such as word balance, length, headline type, and more. We typically try to score at least 70 for our articles.

12. Photo Library: Pixabay

free marketing tools

Want free images and videos you can use everywhere without having to worry about someone suing you for copyright infringement? All pictures and videos on Pixabay are released free of copyrights.

This means you can download, modify, distribute, and use them royalty free to illustrate your posts, create marketing campaigns, and pretty much everything else you can think of.

The free plan offers a decent selection of photos, illustrations, vector images, and videos from a wide array of categories.

The tools you need for social media

13. Social Media Scheduling: Squirrly Social

Squirrly Social – If you want to have time to interact with your audience but never miss a social post this is the tool you need. From simple kinds of calendars and scheduling to super advanced schedules, profile posting rules, Squirrly Social has it all and it’s willing to grow as you grow. You’ll only ever get to the advanced stuff once you’re ready and it will be a breeze to set it all up.

Cool Feature: Squirrly Social doesn’t just help you schedule but also helps you find great resources to share and it enhances all your posts. What I mean is that with a click of a button you get automatic hashtags and emoji to any post you find or create. That’s amazing.

14. Reports: FollowerWonk

free marketing tools

FollowerWonk offers insightful reports to help you optimize your social profile, engage users and ultimately grow your brand. The free version lets you:

  • View Social Authority Rankings
  • See Followers and Their Locations
  • Find out when followers are active

15. Track Social Shares: SharesCount

free marketing tools

Online, content can spread in leaps and bounds. This tool helps you see how your content has diffused across the web. Of course, you can use it for other sites as well; it doesn’t just have to be your own.

It’s particularly useful for getting some information about sites that don’t show social media share button numbers.  Enter your web address into SharedCount to track URL shares, likes, and more.

16. Share Buttons: Digg Digg

free marketing tools

If you want to be seen across the Internet and get more traffic, you have to make it easy for others to share your content.  This free marketing tool from Buffer aims to help you do just that. You can install the Digg Digg plugin for free, and get different share buttons that include the latest social networks.

17. Twitter Engagement: Must Be Present

free marketing tools

This free marketing tool comes from Sprout Social. Must Be Present determines your Twitter engagement based on how quickly you respond to comments and questions on Twitter.

18. Find Trending Topics on Twitter: Trends 24

free marketing tools

Yep, your intuition is correct. This particular tool shows you trending terms from the last 24 hours, broken out hour-by-hour and country-by-country. Particularly useful for social media campaigns research.

19. Hashtag Recommender: RiteTag

free marketing tools

Write down your hashtag and get insight on the #’s popularity and reach. The cool thing about this tool is that it also offer suggestions to help you find better alternatives to your hashtags.

20. Facebook Performance: LikeAlyzer

free marketing tools

By evaluating your activity, this free marketing tool helps you measure and analyze the effectiveness of your Facebook Pages, as well as their potential.  You get detailed information and explanation of identified issues. As a bonus, the LikeAlyzer also provides tips on how you can fix those problems to help you improve your results on Facebook.

12. Growing Your Pinterest Community: Pin Groupie

free marketing tools

Pin Groupie is an excellent tool for finding group boards on – you’ve guessed it – Pinterest. You can filter the group boards based on category, their number of followers, likes, or repins. Use it to reach a broader audience for your pins.

22. Find Tweetable Snippets: SavePublishing

free marketing tools

Wrote an article and want to promote it on Twitter? Or what to share an article, but don’t know how to tweet about it? Save time with SavePublishing.  Once you install the bookmarklet, this free marketing tool will reveal any tweetable sentences (140 characters or fewer) from your article.

Overall Business Management

23. Web Analytic: Hotjar

free marketing tools

Free marketing tools like Hotjar are very efficient when it comes to helping you understand your web and mobile site visitors better, and make changes accordingly. Through heat-maps, click-maps, scroll-maps, and visitor recordings, you can “spy” on your visitors and find out more about how they are using your website.

24. Productivity: FreedCamp

free marketing tools

If you have to manage a team or work project, FreedCamp can help you stay organized and get things done faster. You can create task lists, work on a set of tasks using sticky notes, and more to get a clear overview of what you and your team are working on.

25. Team Management: Slack

free marketing tools

When it comes to free marketing tools, Slack is a clear favorite. The free version offers tons of functionalities to keep all team communication in one place. You can create groups and assign different members,  share files, instant message team members and more.

26. Task Management: Trello

free marketing tools

If you aren’t yet using Trello, we recommend giving it a try today. In a nutshell, the app is basically the modern version of a Kanban board on steroids. You can create lists, fill them with cards representing tasks. You can assign team members, add comments, attach files, add labels and due dates – all for free.

27. Usability Testing: Peek

free marketing tools

This free marketing tool lets you see and hear a 5-minute video of a real person using your site or app. It’s an excellent way to get insight on the visitors’ experience on your website. Getting a fresh, unbiased opinion will help build a better site.

28. Email Marketing: Rapportative

free marketing tools

Install  this Chrome extension to find out more details about your contacts without having to leave your inbox. You can see their job, company, photo and LinkedIn profile. Thus, you can create better, more personalized emails and grow your network.

29. Influencer Monitoring: MentionApp

free marketing tools

Similar to Google Alerts but more comprehensive, MentionApp is a tool that monitors the web and automatically informs you whenever someone mentions your name, brand, or other keywords you think are important (like the name of your competition).

However, you can also use this tool to keep track of influencers in your industry and join in on the conversation. Being at the right place at the right time can open up plenty of new opportunities. You can sign up for a free trial and explore more of this tool’s capabilities.

30. PR: Google Alerts

free marketing tools

Ignorance is bliss, but not when it comes to your business. With Google Alerts, you can monitor the web and get notified via email whenever there are new results for any topic you’d like to keep tabs on. This way, you can keep up to date without constantly having to do Google searches for the same words.

31. Never Forget an Idea: Evernote

free marketing tools

If you typically work using multiple devices, this is the tool for you. Evernote lets you capture, nurture, and share your ideas across any device. If inspiration strikes while you’re out to dinner and you get a cool marketing idea, you can make a note of it. It will become instantly available on all your devices.

32. Customer Relationship Management: Charlie

free marketing tools

Properly manage current, and future customers is no easy feat. But it’s paramount. Charlie can help you stay on top of your game and ease your workload. You can get started for free in exchange for your email.

33. Get Press Coverage: Haro

free marketing tools

A tool often used by journalists, Haro deserves a place among the best free marketing tools. You can use it two ways. You can ask questions and get leaders and specialists in your industry to share input on a certain topic and create insightful blog posts (it’s what we did for this article).

Alternatively, you can be the one offering to share your expertise, and maybe get some press coverage, or get featured on a site with authority.

34. Email Newsletter: Campayn

free marketing tools

How many emails do you send a day? With Campayn, you can send more.  The free version allows you to send up to 20,000 emails per month. They also offer a library of free email templates that can help you create better emails that reflect your brand. Not too shabby.

35. Measure Site Performance: ContentLook

free marketing tools

Use ContentLook to see how well your site is performing in terms of digital marketing. You can get all-around information for six significant categories: Blogging activity, SEO, Social Media Performance, Traffic, Links, and Authority.

Get to the bottom of your site’s problems and get inspired to find the best solutions.

36. File Storing: DropBox

free marketing tools

A veteran when it comes to free online tools, DropBox is still a reliable option for safely storing your files. Particularly useful for teams, DropBox lets you access file across multiple devices, create online documents, privately share and comment on files, and more.

37. Create Surveys: SurveyMonkey

free marketing tools

Gathering data for research purposes is essential for businesses of all shapes and sizes. In exchange for your email address, this tool allows you to create surveys and get answers to relevant questions easily. This way, you can take informed decisions and draw the best conclusions. The basic plan includes:

  • 10 questions
  • 100 responses
  • Standard email support

38. Track Your Projects: Asana

free marketing tools

This is an excellent tool that can help teams monitor their progress to increase efficiency. Asana lets you track projects from start to finish and ensure all members of your team known what they should be doing. You can get started for free using your email address.

39. Spy on Your Competition: MOZ

free marketing tools

You may have already used this addicting free tool to check out your website’s search engine authority. But that’s not the only way you can take advantage of the functionalities it offers for free.

It can also help you spot who is mentioning and linking to your competitor. Take inspiration to come up with better marketing strategies.

40. More Traffic to Your Site: SlideShare

free marketing tools

Upload your professional videos and SlideShare presentations. SlideShare averages 25 million views each month alone, so there’s an opportunity to increase the traffic flow to your site. Google is not the only traffic source out there.

You can check out one of our presentations named Top 7 SEO Tools to Boost Your Content Marketing right here.

41. Slow Down: Do Nothing for 2 Minutes

free marketing tools

We get that you want to go a mile-a-minute and reach as many of your goals as soon as possible (we’re like that too). But sometimes, the best way to get faster results is to slow down.

You’ve been a good sport and made it all the way to the end of this long post. Take up on the challenge to do absolutely nothing for two whole minutes.

Which of These Free Marketing Tools Will You Add to Your Arsenal Today?

The point of this article wasn’t to sugarcoat the truth. The reality is that some of the best tools out there don’t come cheap – but are well worth the money. If you can swing it, there are some definitely plenty of tools out there that can help you grow into a stronger marketer.

There are also those you will probably regret spending money on.

The point of this post was to inspire you and show you that you have options. Which kind of means that we as marketers have one less excuse to make up for our failures  and one more resource to succeed.

So shake up the belief that free automatically means low-quality, and take advantage of the benefits offered for free by the tools mentioned in this article.

To end this article, I want to point you towards another resource you can access. You can find more inspiration and learn more about the tools that power growth by watching our shows. They’re also FREE.

Heading out? Make sure to tell us what are some free tools you think should have made it on our list. We’d ♥ to hear your feedback.

5 Marketing Tools That Will Make Your Website an SEO Paradise

5 Marketing Tools That Will Make Your Website an SEO ParadiseAny discussion about marketing tools should start with three questions.

Do you know how many websites are there? The truth is, it’s pretty hard to tell the exact number because of the constant fluctuation, but there are more than one billion.

Do you know how many websites Google shows on the first page for any search? 9 or 10.

How can your site beat the other one billion websites to the first page?

Simple – with excellent SEO.

The problem is that getting the hang of how a search engine works is not precisely a cakewalk. There are a lot of variables and factors. Understanding all of them takes a lot of time, time that you don’t have. Luckily, there are better options now: you can use specialized marketing tools that can help in the process.

A big mistake many companies make when it comes to SEO is forgetting about the human element.

Search engines want to show people the most relevant results for their queries. That means search engines want you to create good content for the people, not for the bots.

Your primary SEO focus should be on creating quality content.

For this article, we’ve selected 5 tools that can help you achieve SEO Nirvana.

1. SEMrush – One of the Mightiest Marketing Tools

marketing tools

Before you start optimizing your website, you have to choose what to optimize it for. That means a lot of research on keywords and domains.

The goal is to find the most common search queries your target audience makes and learn who your competitors are, and what their strategy is. Once you know the lay of the land, it will be easier for you to start gaining organic traffic.

The problem is that understanding traffic isn’t as easy as it may seem at first. You’ve got to factor in ads, pay-per-click, social media shares and loads of other things.

marketing tools

And you’ll need powerful marketing tools to measure all that. Well, that’s something SEMrush can help you with. They create reports with all the little details you didn’t even know you needed.

Let’s go over these details:

  • Organic reach – Before you do anything, you need to identify some good keywords. If you sell furniture, some relevant keywords could be “custom cupboards” or “folding chairs.” If you operate in New York, add that into the mix as well. New Yorkers who are looking for furniture items are more likely to search for “folding chairs new york” than for “furniture”.
  • Analytics – insights into the advertising strategies of your competitors.
  • Domain comparison – the Domain vs. Domain feature gathers ‘competitive intelligence’ data regarding up to five competing domains performance. You’ll see what keywords fare the best or worst. Then you can select low-competition keywords that you can use.

2. SEO PowerSuite

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When optimizing a website, you don’t get to take shortcuts. It takes time and patience to achieve desired results.

By knowing that, you could be quite reluctant when a marketing tool promises to get “all the job done.”

Well, SEO PowerSuite integrates 4 SEO tools as an across-the-board mega pack that gets all the SEO job done.

So what are these four features for SEO excellence?

  • Rank Tracker – as the name says, you get rank tracking for your site, as well as for your competitors’. Plus keyword research with 17 tools.

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  • Seo SpyGlass – enables you to check your backlink profile, keep up with Google’s algorithm changes and discover the most effective link building patterns.

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  • WebSite Auditor – broken links reports, on-site optimization and crawl statistics for better site indexing.

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  • Link Assistant – manages all backlink data and digs for relevant link opportunities.

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Sounds too good to be true?

SEO PowerSuite is indeed a complete solution for a swift SEO performance.

What makes it so appealing to users is its easy-to-use and straightforward interface.

3. Screaming Frog

If you heard about Search Engine Optimization, you’ve sure bumped into terms like ‘bots’ and ‘crawlers.’ These are the small scanners that crawl your website and deliver data reports to a search engine. This is how Google indexes websites and decides how high a page will be ranked.

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That being said, it would be great if you owned a tool that made things easier, right? This is where Screaming Frog’s free SEO Spider Tool comes in. It helps to fetch the following:

  • Server/link errors
  • Status of internal and external links
  • Link security status
  • Redirects
  • Blocked URLs
  • Page title issues
  • Meta-data
  • Page response time

And these are just a few. The spider harvests all information necessary to create an XML Sitemap. This is a file that hierarchically outlines all links on your website so as to help bots crawl it more efficiently. That will reflect on your SEO metrics as well.

Once your page is made more accessible to crawlers, they will prioritize it and thus place it higher on the rankings.

4. Open Site Explorer

Open Site Explorer is the tool you need if you want to find out everything about links on your website or link building opportunities, both of which are important for SEO.

marketing tools

Just type in the URL of your website (or any other website for that matter), click on the “search” button, and, in a matter of seconds, you’ll discover plenty of insights about the website.

Here are the tool’s main sections:

  • Inbound links
  • Just-Discovered
  • Top Pages
  • Linking Domains
  • Anchor Text
  • Compare Link Metrics
  • Link Opportunities
  • Advanced Reports

5. MozBar

Kristina Kledzik, the SEO Manager at Rover.com, says that MozBar has been a critical part of her link building strategies and competition analysis for the last 5 years.

marketing tools

You know that you can’t have SEO without link building.

This nifty extension (as they call it) for Chrome and Firefox will show you the page authority and domain authority of every page you’re on. With the PRO version, you’re able to see the DA and PA for every website in Google search results.

Here’s the full list of features:

  • Custom Searches
  • Metrics That Matter
  • Social Metrics
  • Data Export
  • Page Overlay
  • On-Page Highlighter

Do You Fancy a Scenario Where SEO Is Done Seamlessly?

We’re sure you do. But for that to happen, you need to find the right tools. The five we outlined in this article are all free to try, until you figure out which ones are the most rank-boosting for your platform.

And remember! It takes a whole lot of patience to find the winning formula for SEO greatness.

Actually, you can start by trying out our own Squirrly SEO Plugin.

Feel free to leave us your questions in the comment section or share this article if you found it to be useful.

The value buying articles for your blog can bring to your business

Most of the time, when I find the website of a new company, I want to see whether they have a blog or not. I don’t know if this is a new habit now that I’m interested in content marketing (more than others maybe), but it’s like a reflex. For me, a blog is an important part of establishing a relationship with your clients/customers. So why not invest in buying articles?

Is Buying Articles a Good Idea?

Yes, it is, and I will tell you why. Let’s say that you started a startup, and, as a CEO, you don’t have that much time on your side to run a blog for your business as well. At the same time, you still want to provide value to your potential customers, and show them that you care about them, and that you are willing to teach them something new every day. If you decide to buy articles, you will save time, and you will also have the certainty that someone passionate will do an amazing job at creating valuable content for your blog.

buying articlesPhoto Credits: Paul L Dineen‘s Flickr

On the other hand, if you’ve been running a business for a while now, and you’ve never thought about buying articles, then this can be the special ingredient that can differentiate your business from all the similar ones out there.

Buying content is the best thing you can do to maximize the engagement between you and your customers, bringing them value, making them worth their while, and establishing a long term relationship.

Content has the potential of converting a visitor into a customer

As I was saying, if I see that a company has a blog on which it publishes content constantly, I will definitely browse through their articles, and see whether they can provide me any value, or if I there’s something I can learn from them. They can still have a blog on which they publish regularly, but the content doesn’t necessarily have to be good. Either way, I can tell almost immediately if the company is worth my time or not. And you can, too.

Think about this for a moment. If the content is engaging, people will obviously spend more time on your company’s website. And if they do that, there will be higher chances that they’ll be interested in your products/services. And that’s what you ultimately want, right? To turn your visitors into customers.

Another important aspect about content is that it makes you an expert in your field. Even if you don’t have time to write your own content, there are still plenty of writers or agencies out there, happy to provide their content writing services.

Standing out with a blog that provides quality content

buying articles

Providing content for your potential customers can be a decisive factor between you and the competition. Because today, time is passing so fast that we forget to just be, buying articles is the best thing you can do for your business, time-wise and money-wise.

Now tell us, what are your experiences with content writing services (if you have had any)? Would you be interested in them?

11 Actionable Steps That Will Help You Run A Daring Social Media Giveaway

Today, it’s a silly thing not to have at least one social media account for your brand. Billions of users use social media every single day.

If you clicked on this article, then I’m going to assume that your business is on social media. Since I’m also a mind-reader, I know that you’re here because you want to find out more about social media giveaways.

Did you know that the top reason why people choose to follow brands on social media is for promotions and discounts?

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Yes, I know, such a shocker! But don’t get this all wrong. People still want to find out the latest information about your product and services or contact you for customer service on social media.

Bearing that in mind, I want to go back in time a little bit.

I created my Facebook account in 2010. Back then, only a handful of big brands were on Facebook (I’m only talking about their presence on the Romanian market, not worldwide). What they did to acquire thousands of likes is they organized different contests and giveaways.

I participated in a couple of contests and even won some stuff (go me!). I almost never participate in social media contests, because they’re usually the ones where you have to like/share/comment. I’m not a fan of those. Those contests, however, were kind of interesting and creative. Even though they didn’t rely on the like and share method, they were still quite successful.

Now back to our days. 

Social media giveaways are used quite often as a strategy. Almost every big, medium and small company out there has organized one until one.

Let’s take a quick look to see why companies host giveaways on their social media profiles and what are their benefits.

Why Companies Organize Social Media Giveaways

social media giveaway

  • Exposure. Businesses that are just starting out or those that want to increase their following will do a giveaway so that more people will find out about them. It’s really easy to increase your exposure this way because people love free stuff, especially if it’s your products or services. They will act as a very attractive incentive in exchange for them following you on social media.
  • Engagement. One problem with social media today is that people follow so many brands today that it’s hard to keep up with them and react to what they post. I actually find myself guilty of this. I scroll on my Facebook feed; I read certain posts, but then, even if I liked a post or thought it was funny, I only react in my mind. Sounds weird, but many of you are probably doing the same thing. A giveaway can entice people to engage again with a certain brand. After all, the point of being on social media is opening a dialogue and not a monolog.
  • Understanding the audience. By asking a simple question for the giveaway, you can find out so many things about the people that follow your company on social media. It can be anything from their habits when it comes to your products, or what type of services they use most often from the ones you provide. The possibilities are endless here. It’s just a matter of figuring out what kind of information would be useful to you.
  • Free content. I’ve seen many creative giveaways out there, many of which were harnessing the power of user-generated content. Here’s how this works. If you sell cereal, you can ask your followers to submit a picture with their breakfast for a chance to win a yearly supply of your products. The guideline or the theme for the pictures can be to contain cereal. Just like that, you’ll have plenty of images for your upcoming posts that you can use (with the users’ approval, of course).
  • Grow your email list. Your weekly or monthly newsletter may be fascinating, but it doesn’t matter if no one is reading it. Email marketing is still, until this day, the most successful communication channel. To get the most out of it, you need a big email list. By running a giveaway and asking the participants to enter by simply entering their name and email address, you got this problem solved. However, don’t use this opportunity to spam them.
  • Promote a new product/service. This is one of the best ways to promote a new product or service. It is, of course, if it’s also the prize for the giveaway. Considering it is, people will be excited to be the first to try out your new stuff, and it will also create a lot of buzz.

These are the main reasons why companies do social media giveaways and also why you should too.

Next, we’ll discuss every step you need to consider when organizing a giveaway on social media.

Implementing a social media giveaway 101

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1. Why are you doing it? 

Do you want to gain more followers, do you want more engagement, or to obtain email addresses? Whatever the case may be, you need to address this question before you start planning anything.

Why? Because the answer to this question will determine the way, you create the strategy behind the giveaway.

2. Determine the type of giveaway

There are two types you can do:

  • A contest. The winner will be chosen based on criteria that were established beforehand. If you want to organize a contest, then you’ll have to figure out if you want to have a jury or if it’s going to be you the one to select the winner. Either way, the person or the group of individuals that get to make this call have to be experts in the particular industry.
  • A sweepstake. This is where the winners will be randomly selected with a tool like random.org. No one can interfere with the results. It’s just pure luck.

3. Where you’ll run it? 

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Even though you’ll promote the giveaway basically on all your channels, you still have to decide what is the main channel for running it. It can be Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. These are the most popular social media channels for giveaways.

The choice for the platform will be connected to the objectives you set in the first place. For example, if your goal is to increase your Instagram followers, then that is where you will run the giveaway.

4. What’s the prize?

Whatever you do, please don’t give away an iPad or an iPhone, unless you’re Apple. Assuming the social media team from Apple is not reading this post, I will give you some tips when it comes to choosing the prize(s) for the giveaway.

First of all, the prize has to be relatable to the profile of your company and your audience. Let’s say that you’re a skincare company. Depending on what is your objective, you can give away:

  • The new products you’re launching
  • A goodie bag that contains products worth $1,000
  • A facial treatment at a luxury SPA
  • Product supplies for an entire year

And the list can go on and on. If you have a bigger budget, you can, of course, have a more impressive prize, such as a trip to a dreamy destination.

5. Make it simple to enter

That being said, make sure that you explain very clearly for everyone how they can enter and what they need to do. For example, if they have to submit a photo, list every step they need to complete.

If it’s the case, create an entry form that will require for the participants to enter as little information as possible. Don’t ask for unnecessary information, like address or occupation, unless you need it for the giveaway.

Remember: even if the prize is extremely attractive, people may not be as eager to enter if the entering process looks like too much trouble.

6. Decide how long it will last

When you’re going to announce your giveaway, specify very clearly how long it will last.

If it’s a big giveaway, it’s usually recommended to run it for approximately four weeks. If it’s longer than that, then people will forget about it. You can make it shorter as well. However, try to run it for at least two weeks.

7. The concept

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For the giveaway to make sense to your audience and other people as well, it’s critical to link it to a future event. For example, it can be a back to school themed one, a giveaway for Thanksgiving, Halloween, or Christmas.

The idea has to be very clear and concise, and the content you’ll create around it have to make the connection to the event you’ll link it to.

8. Rules

No one likes rules, but we have to respect them.

Every social media platform has its set of rules, so after you’ve decided where to run the giveaway, make sure to read and apply them.

Also, when you announce it, you’ll have to display the rules on social media. Even though not many people will read them, it’s necessary for legal purposes. If you have the possibility, I would recommend asking an attorney to help you with this.

If you want to find out more about this topic, here’s an excellent article that was written by Sara Hawkins from SocialMedia Examiner.

9. Promotion

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This is the most important step for your giveaway. You now what they say: if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it actually make a sound?

That’s how it is with social media giveaways. Don’t keep it a secret. After all, you want as many people as possible to participate in it, right?

The first step is to use all of your communication channels to get the word out. This means email lists, all of your social media channels, website (pop-ups, blog), plus others that would greatly depend on the type of business you’re running.

It can be anything from in-app notifications to messages on mobile phones. Make a list with every channel you use, so that you don’t forget anything. Then, the next step is to create content for all of them. Articles, posts, videos, infographics, images – the wider the variety, the better.

It’s not enough to post the message announcing the giveaway only once. Remind people about it every single day, but don’t be spammy about it. Only one message per day will do the trick and even once every couple of days.

Promoting the giveaway on your communication channels is not enough, however.

You need to use influencers, partners, and sponsors for this. The chances are that if people see your giveaway being shared by someone else, they will be more likely to enter. Brand advocates are also a great fit for your promotion activities.

The last idea for promoting your giveaway is to submit it to giveaway sites. Here are the best ones:

These websites have hundreds of thousands of visitors every single day, so the visibility for your giveaway will be maximum.

10. Track and analyze

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Don’t wait until the giveaway is over to track and analyze what has happened during that period.

Make a habit of tracking the results every five days or so. That way, if you don’t have that many entries or if people don’t seem that interested in your giveaway, you will be able to analyze what’s wrong and adjust it.

At the end of the giveaway, you’ll also need to assess the results to see whether organizing it was worth it or not.

11. Don’t forget about the participants that didn’t win 

If you want to make your giveaway extra special, you can surprise all of your participants with something they wouldn’t expect. After the contest is over and the winner has been announced, you can contact the other participants, thank them for entering and offering them a discount for your products/services.

If you don’t want this to be a surprise, you can announce it for the giveaway. That way, every participant will now that even if they don’t win the big prize, they still get something.

Give It Away, Give It Away, Give It Away Now

(For some reason, Red Hot Chilli Peppers’s song Give It Away has popped into my mind.)

I’m pretty sure that if I scroll for a few minutes on my Facebook feed, I will find at least one post about a giveaway that’s happening right now.

Now multiply this by the number of social media channels that exist nowadays. You’ll see that social media giveaways have become hugely popular because they actually bring results.

You can see results as well if you decide to implement a giveaway. I do hope that the steps I presented above will help you get most of it.

If you have further questions on this topic, feel free to post them in the comment section below. And if you decide indeed to run a giveaway on social media, I look forward to hearing from you about the results you’ve got.

Your First Time Hanging Out with Squirrly’s

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But if you were to delete the words “live assistant” from the title thus also changing the permalink, that would no longer be the case. Go ahead, try it right now. (Yes, go ahead! It’s made for DEMO purposes and we want you to break it. Your site will suffer no changes.) By removing the phrase for which we’ve optimized this article from the title, you’ve lowered the optimization percentage. See how the box for Title is Google Friendly is no longer Green? Put the keyword back in the title to get it back to 100%. Good! The box is green again, right? Now, delete this image of an incredibly adorable puppy below (Be strong; don’t let those puppy eyes stop you in your tracks).
Delete the image? Wow, how could you? And also… notice how two of the panels are no longer green? The explanation is that the Live Assistant checks to see if you’ve added at least one image in your article and automatically adds the keyword in the alt text of the image (if you insert it using the Blogging Assistant). Did you happen to see the keyword in bold just above? Remove the bold and pay attention to what happens in the panel to the right. Caught it? Great! You’ll have to bold one of the keywords present in your text to get it back to green.

Now Delete the Words “Live Assistant” from this Heading: See What Happens!

Yep, this seemingly small change has caused the optimization percentage to go down! But if you follow the instructions from the assistant, you’ll never overlook this optimization step – or any other! Next, lets’ turn it up a notch and do something really outrageous. Try writing down the keyword for this article 5 more times. Starting now. The assistant caught on to that pretty fast, right? Notice the Red lights? It’s to signal that the content is no longer Google-friendly because you over-optimized it. Finally, try removing all the words Live Assistant from the text. That’s no good either, it’s important to have keywords spread throughout the body of the article. But don’t worry, the assistant will always be there to be your compass towards achieving a 100% optimized article or page every time you use it. Try it Today to Optimize Your First Post You can find it in any “Edit Post” or “Add New Post” interface in WordPress.