5 Reasons Why You Should Blog For SEO Sake
The rise of blogging came about in the late 1990s when websites like LiveJournal and Blogger made easy-to-use tools for non-technical users to share their thoughts, opinions and passions with simple presses of buttons. Over time, savvy businesses began blogging to demonstrate authoritative knowledge of their products and services. At the same time, well-written company blogs created more website engagement with their customers. When a company writes blog posts, the traffic and time spent on their website goes up and bounce rates have a tendency to drop.
Why is Blogging Important For SEO?
A major benefit search engine optimization (SEO) professionals see from blogging is that it can hypercharge optimization efforts. Blogs provide a site with fresh content, relevant internal links, more pages for other sites to link back to, a natural way to incorporate keywords and when shared on social media, it can create social signals that are evaluated in search engine ranking algorithms.
Let’s take ...
Posted in: Local SEO, Search Engine Optimization by Noah Lamson on December 5, 2019
What is the California Consumer Privacy Act?
The buzz about the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is on the rise, and businesses must be informed about the new law and what they need to do to prepare for it. Is it news to you? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. It was widely believed this bill wouldn’t end up passing, but here we are. The law will go into effect on January 1, 2020. It can affect your business, even if it is not located in California.
Keep in mind that this information is for discussion purposes only. The team at Foremost Media, Inc. are not qualified to provide legal advice of any kind. They are not an authority on the interpretation of the CCPA or any other rule or regulation. To understand how the CCPA or any other law impacts your business, you should seek independent advice or qualified legal counsel.
With the disclaimer out of the way, let’s dive into the details.
What is the California ...
Posted in: News by Abby Hughes on December 2, 2019
Second Annual DNN Awards Announced
(Janesville, Wis) Foremost Media has announced the second annual DNN Awards, a website design competition. DNN Awards was created for the DNN community to showcase the best websites each year that are powered by the DNN Platform. We aim to recognize their excellence in user experience and their innovation in applying DNN features and capabilities. This competition offers entrants a fantastic opportunity to showcase their talents among their peers and receive feedback from industry experts.
There is no fee or limit to how many sites can enter. This competition is open to all organizations and individuals involved in designing and developing DNN desktop and mobile websites. One winner will be chosen from each category, B2B, B2C, eCommerce, Gov/Non-profit, Self-Promotion, and Service Industry.
This year, DNN Awards is changing from a Facebook contest to an official juried awards competition. The competition will feature an expert panel of judges who have extensive experience in designing and/or developing DNN ...
Posted in: News by Seth Clayton on November 13, 2019
Remarketing with Google Ads
Remarketing is a term that you may have heard marketers throw around a lot lately. It is a very powerful asset to have in your advertising playbook, as it helps you reach people who have visited your website, interacted with your in-store business or talked to you at a trade show. These are just a few examples of ways that users can interact with your business. These are the users that you should try to target because they are familiar with your business and have already expressed interest in you. Remarketing allows your targeted users to see your ads while surfing the internet (Google Display Network) or searching on Google (Google Search Network).
Remarketing can be confusing because there are many types of remarketing options. This guide will help walk you through some of the remarketing options you can use with Google Ads:
Standard display remarketing
Dynamic display remarketing
Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSAs)
Standard Display ...
Posted in: General, Online Advertising by John Anderson on October 24, 2019
The Importance of Local SEO & How to Grow a Social Media Following
Having an online presence for your business is extremely important. A study conducted by Market Force found that 81% of consumer’s purchasing decisions are influenced by social media posts. Being active on social media will keep your current followers engaged and will grab the attention of potential followers. Taking advantage of Google My Business, using social media tools, and posting relevant content will increase your followers and help to grow your business.
Google My Business
Google My Business (GMB) is a free service through Google that allows business owners to keep updated information on their business. It is essentially the Yellow Pages of Google. When a business is searched on Google, this is all of the information that shows up about the business. It displays the business name, hours, location, reviews, and photos. GMB is a good place for business owners to start optimizing their local SEO. It is important to fill out all of the ...
Posted in: General, Local SEO, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, Social Media by Abby Hughes on October 22, 2019
Website Redesigns For Manufacturers
If you are considering a website redesign, it may feel overwhelming at first. However, some careful planning will ensure that your new and improved site provides optimum user experience and increased sales or lead generation.
Set the Bar
Before you begin your redesign, make sure to get a good idea of how your metrics are performing. Using a tool like Google analytics, analyze historical data like the number of visits to the website, amount of time spent on the website, form submissions and goal conversions, bounce rate, keyword rankings, and domain authority. If you do not have anything setup to measure metrics, make sure to do so immediately. Measuring the performance of your website, especially when transitioning to a new website, is crucial to your marketing efforts.
Define Your Audience and Goals
It is important to determine what your goals are as a manufacturing company and how your website will help to accomplish these goals. Perhaps you want ...
Posted in: General, Web Development by Seth Clayton on October 7, 2019
Return of Marketing Leader Brings Huge Upside
Mama, I’m comin’ home! (Sorry for the Ozzy Osbourne reference, we couldn’t help ourselves). Director of Sales and Marketing, Evan Facinger, has returned to Foremost Media at a time when the future couldn’t be brighter.
Facinger was a key piece of the Foremost Media team for over four years before founding his own consulting firm. However, the exciting direction of the business and the chance to work with an expanded team was an alluring sell.
Facinger, a forward-thinking marketing leader and speaker, brings over 10 years of industry experience. His return to the team is a huge value-add for clients looking to beef up their digital marketing strategies, including industry leading Amazon marketing services.
“It’s rare to find such a talented group of marketers, developers and project managers under one roof. I am looking forward to working with everybody again,” said Facinger.
Evan Facinger will be speaking at PubCon Pro Las Vegas 2019, October 8-10. If you plan ...
Posted in: News by Foremost Marketing on September 30, 2019
That Robocall From Google Is Not Google
Have you received an automated robocall that sounds something like:
“Hi, this is Julie, your local Google Specialist. Your business listing is about to expire … “
I’m not sure what “Julie” says next because I hang up and so should you. These calls are scams to claim or protect your free business listing (and rip you off in the meantime). The operators will claim they are Google representatives. Simply put, Google does not cold call about business listings. In fact, Google doesn’t call you at all unless you request them to.
Anyone can claim their free Google My Business listing. It’s not rocket science.
Robocalls Are Illegal (Mostly)
According to the FTC:
A robocall trying to sell you something is illegal unless a company has your written permission to call you that way. To get your permission, the company has to be clear it’s asking to call you with robocalls and it can’t make you agree to the calls ...
Posted in: Local SEO, Reputation Management, Search Engine Optimization by Noah Lamson on August 6, 2019
Is Bad Photography Hurting Your Business?
In terms of the web, content is still king and a large majority of that content is visual. So when it comes to images, I am surprised to hear more often than not - “just use what’s on our current website.” or “I’ll snap some photos with my phone.” In terms of redesigning your website and online presence, reusing what has already proven to be unsuccessful would leave us at a disadvantage. As for snapping some images with your phone, that can work with proper lighting, composition and professional editing, but those cases are very rare. There is a reason you see those tasty burgers in magazines or online and seem to get hungry instantly. Snapping a photo of that burger on a cell phone for your instagram page just doesn’t look as good though, does it?
It has been said that visual information is processed by the human brain 60,000 times faster than text ...
Posted in: Online Advertising, Web Development by Adam Zellmer on July 10, 2019
Getting The Attention Of The Industrial Buyer
What you need on your website to help them make a buying decision
Industrial buyers are interested in establishing a relationship with a vendor- with your company – and the information you have on your website is the key to helping them make that decision. Their time is valuable and whatever you can do on your website to help them make that decision efficiently is, well, good business practices. Foremost Media can help make sure your website brings the important information to the prospective buyer, efficiently and in a manner that will also make sure your website stays in the top search engine rankings.
Valuable Website Information
Take a look at your website and consider the following recommendations to make it more attractive to a potential buyer. These are listed in no particular order of importance because they all are important!
Associations – Highlight your membership in trade associations. They show you keep up ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Web Development by Foremost Marketing on July 8, 2019
Website Request For Proposal Process
Get through the hassles and headaches of finding a web developer by having a well thought-out Request For Proposal or RFP. If you haven’t been through the process before, this article should get your wheels spinning on how to begin.
“We need a new website!”
So, the boss just asked you to head up the project for a new website. Super! Depending on your business’ market, it’s going to be time consuming. Hiring the best web design and development company isn’t as easy as searching Google for “best website designer”. It’s important to understand who you are investing time and money with. A web design company worth their salt will know how to respond to a Request For Proposal (RFP).
Start With The RFP Process
Starting out a new web development project using the RFP process sets the ball rolling for success. An RFP helps your organization evaluate your actual needs, timeline and budget you have to allocate. ...
Posted in: General, Web Development by Noah Lamson on July 1, 2019
Your site is not ranking like it should on Google? Here's why...
Have you ever gone to Google and typed in a keyword that your business should be ranking for but your site is nowhere to be found? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Many businesses spend a lot of time and money building an amazing looking website but don’t give much thought to getting traffic to that site. If you could use some help fixing your rankings, keep reading as we walk you through 10 things you can do to rank higher in search results:
Does Google know you exist? If your website is new, it can take time for Google to find and index it. To help speed up this process, it’s important to let Google know you exist. Register your site with Google Search Console and submit your sitemap so Google can easily find all the pages in your website.
Posted in: Online Advertising, SEO by Jon Ballard on June 24, 2019
What is a conversion worth?
When working with clients, I often ask - "what is a conversion worth to you?" The response I get is typically "We don't know." You are probably asking yourself why this is important.
First, let's start by defining a conversion. A conversion is an important action that a user takes on your website, such as downloading a pdf, filling out a contact form or clicking on a phone number or email address to get in touch with a business. These are very important metrics to track. Let's use a "Request for Quote" form as an example. To begin measuring how much a conversion is worth, you need to know the following variables:
How many Request for Quote forms are filled out over the course of a year?
How many of those Request for Quote forms end up as sales?
What was the average dollar amount for ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, Inbound Marketing, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO by John Anderson on June 4, 2019
Best Practices for Manufacturing Websites
Your company’s website acts as an online storefront. It’s your chance to make a great first impression with potential new customers. Having a great website can be the difference between a growing business and spinning your wheels. Our recent post, Five Pillars of an Effective Digital Marketing Campaign for Manufacturers, introduced you to the five most important elements of growing a manufacturing business online. The first, and probably most important, is a mobile-friendly, responsive website.
Today’s buying process is complex, even in the B2B marketplace. Buyers, product developers, engineers, and even marketing staff may have input in the buying process. Designing a manufacturing website that informs and appeals to a range of backgrounds is imperative in 2019 and beyond. Prospective customers are looking for a website that performs well, is easy to navigate, and is loaded with helpful information presented in an easy to digest manner.
Your Website Beyond Web Design
Website performance is vital to getting a ...
Posted in: General, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, Web Development by Jon Ballard on May 7, 2019
5 Pillars of an effective digital marketing campaign for manufacturers
It’s no secret that building a digital marketing campaign for manufacturers or B2B companies is different than marketing for consumer goods. We often hear from clients that say their product isn’t “sexy” or doesn’t translate well to common marketing practices. Many of the same tactics used in B2C marketing are effective for B2B businesses, they just need to be tweaked. A B2B company is still selling to a person or group of people. In the next few weeks we’ll go into more detail on each of these points, but this five pillar plan for finding those people and helping them make a decision to buy from your company is a good start to an effective digital marketing campaign.
MOBILE FRIENDLY, RESPONSIVE WEBSITE
People are becoming more and more dependent on their smartphones. We’re not just talking about checking Facebook. In a 2017 survey by Boston Consulting Group, 60% of B2B buyers said mobile played a significant role in their purchasing ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, Marketing Automation, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO by Jon Ballard on May 7, 2019
What is remarketing and how does it work?
Have you ever been to the Home Depot website to look at a lawn mower and then realized that every ad you see on the internet is about Home Depot and their fine selection of lawn mowers? That’s not a coincidence, it’s remarketing.
Remarketing allows companies to follow you around the web with ads based on your behavior, in hopes that you will come back to their site and complete a purchase or request a quote.
Milwaukee Journal Website with Remarketed Home Depot Advertisement
Google and Bing both have robust remarketing programs, as does Facebook and LinkedIn. Remarketing is also commonly called “retargeting” depending on the platform but is basically the same thing. Each platform requires you to add a tracking code to your website, called a tag or a pixel, to identify what visitors are looking at. It also writes a cookie in their browser that allows you to serve up the ads as your past ...
Posted in: Local SEO, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, Social Media by Jon Ballard on April 26, 2019
Using UTM Parameters to Capture Lead Source
UTM parameters are tags you add to a URL. Marketers use them to be able to track traffic from a wide range of sources such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, email, display ads, paid ads and more. These specific UTM tags are sent back to Google Analytics and can track stats such as users, sessions, time on site, number of pages, bounce rate, conversions/goals from those campaigns. These metrics help see the effectiveness of the campaigns and which campaigns are driving the most conversions and assisting in the most conversions.
The five UTM parameters that Google Analytics can register are:
Utm_source (google, facebook, linkedin, youtube, pinterest, etc)
Utm_medium (post, pin, cpc etc)
Utm_campaign (name of campaign or specific promotion)
Utm_term (used for text ads to tell you which keyword)
Utm_content (used to differentiate ads)
You might already be using UTM parameters to ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, General, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, Social Media by John Anderson on April 19, 2019
Foremost Media Accepting College Scholarship Applications
Annual award supports U.S. students pursuing a degree in Marketing or Web Development
Janesville, Wis – Foremost Media, Inc., a website design and development company in Janesville, WI, is accepting applications for the Annual Foremost Media Scholarship Award. This new $500 scholarship will be awarded each year to one student pursuing or intending to pursue an undergraduate degree in Marketing or Web Development. High school seniors and current college students are invited to apply online now through May 1st, 2019 at www.foremostmedia.com/scholarship.
The Foremost Media Scholarship is open to high school seniors intending to attend classes at an accredited university, technical or trade school and to students already attending an accredited university, tech or trade school. Students must be pursuing a degree in Marketing or Web Development and must be a U.S. citizen. The scholarship will be awarded Aug 1, 2019.
Like many small businesses, Foremost Media is constantly looking for well-trained employees to fill job openings. ...
Posted in: News by Rose Stricker on April 2, 2019
The Importance of Technical SEO
Technical SEO is vital to the success of your website, and we can’t emphasis that enough. Think of it as the spine of your website; without it, your website is just a bunch of fluff and mush that won’t stand up to a good or even a mediocre search engine. You can build your own website, but if no one visits it, or if they don’t spend enough time on it to buy something or get acquainted with your business, it’s like a crack in the concrete that people quickly step over to go somewhere else. At Foremost Media, we recognize the importance of technical SEO. So, whether you are setting up a website on your own, or if you want one set up for you, go to a professional to either review it or build it.
It all adds up
Think of it this way, if you are selling Girl Scout cookies, you are ...
Posted in: Search Engine Optimization by Noah Lamson on January 25, 2019
[Webinar] Testing Your Way To More Web Sales - CRO
Originally presented at the NopCommerce show in Nov. 2018 in Las Vegas By Jon Ballard
CRO is Conversion Rate Optimization.
With CRO we use data, testing, and creativity to maximize the percentage of visitors who convert on a website. These conversions can be purchases, newsletter signups, quote requests, phone calls, or any other action you would like your visitors to take. Optimizing your website to increase the conversion rate (the percentage of visitors who take the desired action) ensures your website is not wasting any of the valuable traffic you are sending to it.
To get a high converting site, you may need to improve numerous aspects including design, content, and overall user experience. Before making these improvements, you must determine what obstacles are causing your visitors to leave and remove those obstacles.
Many marketers remove these obstacles by making opinion-based decisions relying on best practices. This is not CRO. Properly optimizing your site for conversions means ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization by Adam Zellmer on January 22, 2019
Marketing Tips To Get Engineers Engaging With Your Business
How can industrial marketers reach out to engineers now that communication has shifted to online and content marketing? TREW Marketing and IEEE GlobalSpec partnered to conduct a survey and discovered the best ways to interact with technical professionals. Let’s dive into some key findings.
Technical Content Is King
The survey found that engineers preferred datasheets, case studies, and product/how-to videos over other types of content such as trade publication articles or infographics. When creating marketing pieces, consider using white papers and other informational pieces that will engage and inform this technically-minded audience.
Keep It Fresh
Over 90 percent of engineers surveyed are more likely to do business with companies that regularly produce new and current content. Your website is not something you can just set up and forget. You need new content to keep visitors engaged and coming back. However, before you start adding blogs, calculators, and other cool content, here are some things you’ll want to consider.
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by John Tillotson on January 3, 2019
6 Online Marketing Articles You Should Read Heading Into 2019
As 2018 comes to a close and you're ramping up your marketing plans for 2019 we wanted to share our top 6 marketing article picks with you of things that should be on your radar for 2019:
14 ranking signals you need to optimize for in 2019
If you're looking to step up your search rankings for 2019 make sure you're looking at these items.
Facebook B2B Advertising Comes of Age
Thanks to its retargeting and similar audiences features, Facebook has become a powerful tool for B2B advertisers seeking new customers who are similar to their existing customer base.
9 Analytics Insights to Help Grow Your Business
Analytics data can go far beyond the number of visits and time on ...
Posted in: General, SEO by Jon Ballard on December 31, 2018
WHAT ARE UTM PARAMETERS? WHY ARE THEY IMPORTANT? AND HOW DO YOU IMPLEMENT THEM?
Have you ever run a campaign and wondered how effective it was at driving traffic to your website? You did append UTM tags to the links in the campaign, didn’t you? If not, Google Analytics reports will not contain the data you need to measure campaign performance.
That’s why UTM codes (also known as UTM tags or UTM parameters) are so important.
UTM Parameters: What Are They?
UTM parameters are attributes you append to hyperlinks (destination URLs) for marketing campaigns sending traffic to your website. When the link is clicked and the visitor arrives on your site, tags are sent back to your Google Analytics Account and appear in your Analytics metrics.
Here is a sample link we could use when this blog is shared in an email blast; the UTM parameters are appended to the URL):
Why Use Them?
Failure to append UTM tags to hyperlinks will do more than simply hinder your ability to do effective campaign ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, General, Inbound Marketing, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, Social Media by John Anderson on December 3, 2018
Top 5 Takeaways About Giveaways on Social Media
There’s a lot of information shared on social media. So, your message needs to stand out in a crowd to be successful. In a webinar hosted by SEMRush, social media experts highlighted key points to consider before, during, and after you launch a giveaway on social media.
1. Do it well.
A good giveaway involves more than just getting a “like” or a “follow”. A good giveaway actively involves your social media audience. Invite them to do something interactive such as take a selfie with your product or share a story. This is called user-generated content, and it is social gold.
2. Have realistic goals from the beginning.
Your first step is to determine what you want your giveaway to do for you. A good goal could be to attract like-minded followers who will convert to a purchase or another business goal. Another good goal might be to drive more traffic to your website. A not-so-good goal is to simply ...
Posted in: Social Media by Rose Stricker on November 26, 2018
How to Manage Negative Comments on Facebook
We get it at Foremost Media – you want your business on social media, but you are concerned about negative postings. Maybe you are thinking a Facebook page isn’t worth the trouble.
You may need to re-evaluate that line of thinking. A lot of millennials do their shopping and their sharing on Facebook where their family and friends are paying close attention, and you need to be there.
Comments can get pretty lively on Facebook – even on business pages – but you shouldn’t shy away from that. Debate, conversation and even some disagreements are good because it shows your business audience is engaged. There are ways to control the conversation on Facebook, even if it’s an unhappy customer posting. On the plus side, you have some control over comments on your Facebook versus people expressing their dissatisfaction on some other site that you have no control over. Remember, a slam against your business on a ...
Posted in: Reputation Management by Jon Ballard on November 26, 2018