Tag: Business Tips

333 Websites

Ten Top Website Tips from www.333websites.co.uk / @333websites

Website Tips – 1. Have a strong Brand Message on your Website!

Your website should project an image of your business that you want the world to see. The great news is that through good web design you can control that image.

In terms of physical design this means positioning your logo or key message in the top left hand corner – the part of the screen where the eyes of the website visitors are most naturally drawn to.

Website Tips – 2. Provide a clear navigation system for your website.

A good web designer will ensure that they use design techniques to lead the user around the screen and site. Clearly differentiated sub-sections and even a site map can ensure a concise, easy to follow navigation route, while good use of position, colour, contrast and size can all help focus the eye. Stick to one main navigation menu, remain consistent throughout the site, use sub-navigation and keep it uncluttered by avoiding drop down menus.

Website Tips – 3. Make your web intuitive and extremely easy to use!

Website visitors can be fickle and if a website is hard to navigate (or slow to get around) they’ll be off.

Ensure your website navigation buttons are obvious and easy to identify.

Towards the top of the page is a good place to put your navigation buttons and they should have appropriate links directly linking from page to page so the user can quickly and easily switch pages when something catches their interest.

Finally, ensure your website adheres to the functionalities that people have come to expect from modern websites.

For example, if text is underlined your user will naturally expect it to be a link so don’t user underlining unless it is a link.

Website Tips – 4. Keep your website design consistent throughout your website.

Website users like to know where they are within a website and if the style of your website pages change dramatically or somehow feels different, your website visitors will become disengaged and could start to feel lost.

Maintaining consistency will prevent this and will give your website a professional image.

Ensuring that everything matches, from heading sizes and typefaces to design, colour and style of image.

Website Tips – 5. Keep your website design simple!

The whole draw of using a website is that it should be quick and easy to use.

To this end simplicity is key.

At the touch of a button, succinct and useful information should be available to your users.

Today’s Internet surfers won’t hang around, so you need to make sure that the page is scannable.

This means not being afraid to use or leave in plenty of white space.

There is a theory that our eyes do not naturally work in a linear fashion. Given the chance they will take in more and then zoom in to an area of interest from the bigger picture.

Website Tips – 6. Ensure your website and content is easy to understand.

Visitors coming to your website typically won’t want to spend much time so ensure that every aspect is easy to understand; from the navigation to the copy. There are design techniques that can help make the information on a page easier to understand – think shorter sentences, larger font, sections differentiated by contrast and colour and, as previously mentioned, good use of white space. To this end, there are some common rules of thumb: never use more than three typefaces, or more than three different point sizes for a font and keep lines of text to 18 words – 50-80 characters – max!

Website Tips – 7. Ensure that your website degrades gracefully!

Not everyone has the latest pc and the fastest broadband so you should make sure that your website and the code used, is as simple as it can be without compromising on the elements that you require.

HTML code needs to degrade gracefully and not slow down or cause problems to lower spec computers.

If you cause an IT issue on your visitors pc, you can be sure that the customer won’t be back again and would also not be recommending your business or website to anyone else!

Website Tips – 8. Write your content with your target audience in mind and keep it jargon free.

When writing or commissioning the copy for your website, you should bear in mind your target audience.

Tempting as it is to use the medium to bombard the user with all the information you can, so need to keep it succinct in style and use laymen’s terms if appropriate.

If you have to use technical terms include a glossary.

If you are hoping to attract visitors through search engine optimisation (SEO) you will need to consider the “key words” people will be using in their searches.

These “key words” should be weaved into the copy as often as is appropriate to help propel your website up the search engines page rankings.

Website Tips – 9. Consider the usability of your Website!

At the end of the day if your website isn’t usable visitors will be off – as quick as a mouse. So, when working on the web design, consider the end user’s experience of the site.
It can be a good idea to make a list of the things a user will want to use your site for and then checking that these are easy to achieve and if necessary are readily available from the homepage – e.g. Start shopping, Current offers, Book an appointment etc. Then test early and throughout the process test and test again. The only way to really check that your site is as user friendly as it can be is to test it out on people who know nothing about your business.

Website Tips – 10. Make sure that your new website is compliant.

A good website should adhere to certain guidelines. For example, all websites could comply with the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). This ensures that websites are suitable and accessible for people with disabilities and cover aspects of web design such as screen flickering – line with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA).

There are many other guideline that should be looking in to.

The Website Tips page was written “By Mike Armstrong” MD of UK Web Design Company 333 Websites and UK Web Marketing Agency MA Consultancy.

Twitter Marketing Tip 10

With 42% of Twitter’s users following brands, it’s a fertile ground of marketing opportunities. 

You may have mastered the basics by now and know your hashtags from your trends, but there are some next-level tricks and ideas that often get missed out. 

Step up your social media game with this Twitter marketing tip to get you standing out from the competition: 

Import Email Leads Into A Twitter List 

If you’ve worked hard to build up an email list, why not see if you can strengthen the connection on Twitter? 

With an email integration tool, you can match contacts in your email database with their corresponding Twitter accounts. 

You can then keep up with these warm leads on Twitter, strengthening the relationship you have built with them. 

If you like this Twitter Marketing Tip you might also like these Twitter Marketing Tips:

This Twitter Marketing Tip 10 page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”

Cardiff Marketing Company

Welsh Business Marketing

The Voice of Social Media

Technical Website Audit Checklist for 2015

New post on Online Marketing Hub
Technical Website Audit Checklist: 2015 Edition

by christopherjanb
Posted by GeoffKenyon

Back in 2011, I wrote a technical site audit checklist, and while it was thorough, there have been a lot of additions to what is encompassed in a site audit. I have gone through and updated that old checklist for 2015. Some of the biggest changes were the addition of sections for mobile, international, and site speed.

This checklist should help you put together a thorough site audit and determine what is holding back the organic performance of your site. At the end of your audit, don’t write a document that says what’s wrong with the website. Instead, create a document that says what needs to be done. Then explain why these actions need to be taken and why they are important. What I’ve found to really helpful is to provide a prioritized list along with your document of all the actions that you would like them to implement. This list can be handed off to a dev or content team to be implemented easily. These teams can refer to your more thorough document as needed.

Quick overview
Check BoxCheck indexed pages
Do a site: search.
How many pages are returned? (This can be way off so don’t put too much stock in this).
Is the homepage showing up as the first result?
If the homepage isn’t showing up as the first result, there could be issues, like a penalty or poor site architecture/internal linking, affecting the site. This may be less of a concern as Google’s John Mueller recently said that your homepage doesn’t need to be listed first.
Check BoxReview the number of organic landing pages in Google Analytics

Does this match with the number of results in a site: search?
This is often the best view of how many pages are in a search engine’s index that search engines find valuable.
Check BoxSearch for the brand and branded terms

Is the homepage showing up at the top, or are correct pages showing up?
If the proper pages aren’t showing up as the first result, there could be issues, like a penalty, in play.
Check BoxCheck Google’s cache for key pages
Is the content showing up?
Are navigation links present?
Are there links that aren’t visible on the site?
PRO Tip:
Don’t forget to check the text-only version of the cached page. Here is a
bookmarklet to help you do that.
Check BoxDo a mobile search for your brand and key landing pages

Does your listing have the “mobile friendly” label?
Are your landing pages mobile friendly?
If the answer is no to either of these, it may be costing you organic visits.
On-page optimization
Check BoxTitle tags are optimized
Title tags should be optimized and unique.
Your brand name should be included in your title tag to improve click-through rates.
Title tags are about 55-60 characters (512 pixels) to be fully displayed. You can test here or review title pixel widths in Screaming Frog.
Check BoxImportant pages have click-through rate optimized titles and meta descriptions
This will help improve your organic traffic independent of your rankings.
You can use SERP Turkey for this.
Check Box

Check for pages missing page titles and meta descriptions

Check BoxThe on-page content includes the primary keyword phrase multiple times as well as variations and alternate keyword phrases

Check BoxThere is a significant amount of optimized, unique content on key pages

Check BoxThe primary keyword phrase is contained in the H1 tag

Check Box

Images’ file names and alt text are optimized to include the primary keyword phrase associated with the page.

Check BoxURLs are descriptive and optimized
While it is beneficial to include your keyword phrase in URLs, changing your URLs can negatively impact traffic when you do a 301. As such, I typically recommend optimizing URLs when the current ones are really bad or when you don’t have to change URLs with existing external links.
Check BoxClean URLs
No excessive parameters or session IDs.
URLs exposed to search engines should be static.
Check BoxShort URLs
115 characters or shorter – this character limit isn’t set in stone, but shorter URLs are better for usability.
Additional reading:
Best Practices for URLs
URL Rewriting Tool
mod_rewrite Cheat Sheet
Creating 301 Redirects With .htaccess
Check BoxHomepage content is optimized
Does the homepage have at least one paragraph?
There has to be enough content on the page to give search engines an understanding of what a page is about. Based on my experience, I typically recommend at least 150 words.
Check BoxLanding pages are optimized
Do these pages have at least a few paragraphs of content? Is it enough to give search engines an understanding of what the page is about?
Is it template text or is it completely unique?
Check BoxSite contains real and substantial content
Is there real content on the site or is the “content” simply a list of links?
Check BoxProper keyword targeting
Does the intent behind the keyword match the intent of the landing page?
Are there pages targeting head terms, mid-tail, and long-tail keywords?
Check BoxKeyword cannibalization
Do a site: search in Google for important keyword phrases.
Check for duplicate content/page titles using the Moz Pro Crawl Test.
Check BoxContent to help users convert exists and is easily accessible to users
In addition to search engine driven content, there should be content to help educate users about the product or service.
Check BoxContent formatting
Is the content formatted well and easy to read quickly?
Are H tags used?
Are images used?
Is the text broken down into easy to read paragraphs?
Check BoxGood headlines on blog posts
Good headlines go a long way. Make sure the headlines are well written and draw users in.
Check BoxAmount of content versus ads
Since the implementation of Panda, the amount of ad-space on a page has become important to evaluate.
Make sure there is significant unique content above the fold.
If you have more ads than unique content, you are probably going to have a problem.
Additional reading:
How to Write Magnetic Headlines
SEO Copywriting Tips for Improved Link Building
The Ultimate Blogger Writing Guide
Tips to Earn Links and Tweets to Your Blog Post
Duplicate content
Check BoxThere should be one URL for each piece of content
Do URLs include parameters or tracking code? This will result in multiple URLs for a piece of content.
Does the same content reside on completely different URLs? This is often due to products/content being replicated across different categories.
Pro Tip:
Exclude common parameters, such as those used to designate tracking code, in Google Webmaster Tools. Read more at
Search Engine Land.
Check BoxDo a search to check for duplicate content
Take a content snippet, put it in quotes and search for it.
Does the content show up elsewhere on the domain?
Has it been scraped? If the content has been scraped, you should file a content removal request with Google.
Check BoxSub-domain duplicate content
Does the same content exist on different sub-domains?
Check BoxCheck for a secure version of the site
Does the content exist on a secure version of the site?
Check BoxCheck other sites owned by the company
Is the content replicated on other domains owned by the company?
Check BoxCheck for “print” pages
If there are “printer friendly” versions of pages, they may be causing duplicate content.
Site architecture and internal linking
Check BoxNumber of links on a page
100-200 is a good target, but not a rule.
Check BoxVertical linking structures are in place
Homepage links to category pages.
Category pages link to sub-category and product pages as appropriate.
Product pages link to relevant category pages.
Check BoxHorizontal linking structures are in place
Category pages link to other relevant category pages.
Product pages link to other relevant product pages.
Check BoxLinks are in content
Does not utilize massive blocks of links stuck in the content to do internal linking.
Check BoxFooter links
Does not use a block of footer links instead of proper navigation.
Does not link to landing pages with optimized anchors.
Check BoxGood internal anchor text

Check BoxCheck for broken links
Link Checker and Xenu are good tools for this.
Additional reading:
Importance of Internal Linking
Internal Linking Tactics
Using Anchor Links to Make Google Ignore The First Link
Successful Site Architecture for SEO
The SEO Guide to Site Architecture
Information Architecture and Faceted Navigation
Technical issues
Check BoxProper use of 301s
Are 301s being used for all redirects?
If the root is being directed to a landing page, are they using a 301 instead of a 302?
Use Live HTTP Headers Firefox plugin to check 301s.
Check Box”Bad” redirects are avoided
These include 302s, 307s, meta refresh, and JavaScript redirects as they pass little to no value.
These redirects can easily be identified with a tool like Screaming Frog.
Check BoxRedirects point directly to the final URL and do not leverage redirect chains
Redirect chains significantly diminish the amount of link equity associated with the final URL.
Google has said that they will stop following a redirect chain after several redirects.
Check BoxUse of JavaScript
Is content being served in JavaScript?
Are links being served in JavaScript? Is this to do PR sculpting or is it accidental?
Check BoxUse of iFrames
Is content being pulled in via iFrames?
Check BoxUse of Flash
Is the entire site done in Flash, or is Flash used sparingly in a way that doesn’t hinder crawling?
Check BoxCheck for errors in Google Webmaster Tools
Google WMT will give you a good list of technical problems that they are encountering on your site (such as: 4xx and 5xx errors, inaccessible pages in the XML sitemap, and soft 404s)
Check BoxXML Sitemaps
Are XML sitemaps in place?
Are XML sitemaps covering for poor site architecture?
Are XML sitemaps structured to show indexation problems?
Do the sitemaps follow proper XML protocols?
Check BoxCanonical version of the site established through 301s

Check BoxCanonical version of site is specified in Google Webmaster Tools

Check BoxRel canonical link tag is properly implemented across the site
Make sure it points to the correct page, and every page doesn’t point to the homepage.
Check BoxUses absolute URLs instead of relative URLs
This can cause a lot of problems if you have a root domain with secure sections.
Site speed
Check Box

Review page load time for key pages

Is it significant for users or search engines?
Check BoxMake sure compression is enabled
Gzip Test
Check Box

Enable caching

Check Box

Optimize your images for the web
Google’s guide to optimizing your images
Check Box

Minify your CSS/JS/HTML

Check BoxUse a good, fast host
Consider using a CDN for your images.
Check Box

Optimize your images for the web
Google’s guide to optimizing your images
Additional reading:
Google Page Speed Insights
Best Practices for Page Speed

Check BoxReview the mobile experience
Is there a mobile site set up?
If there is, is it a mobile site, responsive design, or dynamic serving?
Check Box

Make sure analytics are set up if separate mobile content exists

Check Box

If dynamic serving is being used, make sure the Vary HTTP header is being used

This helps alert search engines understand that the content is different for mobile users.
Google on dynamic serving.
Check BoxReview how the mobile experience matches up with the intent of mobile visitors
Do your mobile visitors have a different intent than desktop based visitors?
Check BoxEnsure faulty mobile redirects do not exist
If your site redirects mobile visitors away from their intended URL (typically to the homepage), you’re likely going to run into issues impacting your mobile organic performance.
Check BoxEnsure that the relationship between the mobile site and desktop site is established with proper markup
If a mobile site (m.) exists, does the desktop equivalent URL point to the mobile version with rel=”alternate”?
Does the mobile version canonical to the desktop version?
Official documentation.
Check BoxReview international versions indicated in the URL
ex: site.com/uk/ or uk.site.com
Check BoxEnable country based targeting in webmaster tools
If the site is targeted to one specific country, is this specified in webmaster tools?
If the site has international sections, are they targeted in webmaster tools?
Check BoxImplement hreflang / rel alternate if relevant
Check BoxIf there are multiple versions of a site in the same language (such as /us/ and /uk/, both in English), update the copy been updated so that they are both unique

Check BoxMake sure the currency reflects the country targeted

Check BoxEnsure the URL structure is in the native language
Try to avoid having all URLs in the default language
Check BoxAnalytics tracking code is on every page
You can check this using the “custom” filter in a Screaming Frog Crawl or by looking for self referrals.
Are there pages that should be blocked?
Check BoxThere is only one instance of a GA property on a page
Having the same Google Analytics property will create problems with pageview-related metrics such as inflating page views and pages per visit and reducing the bounce rate.
It is OK to have multiple GA properties listed, this won’t cause a problem.
Check BoxAnalytics is properly tracking and capturing internal searches

Check BoxDemographics tracking is set up
Check BoxAdwords and Adsense are properly linked if you are using these platforms
Instructions for linking AdWords
Instructions for linking AdSense
Check BoxInternal IP addresses are excluded
Official documentation
Check BoxUTM Campaign Parameters are used for other marketing efforts
Google URL Builder
Check BoxMeta refresh and JavaScript redirects are avoided
These can artificially lower bounce rates.
Check BoxEvent tracking is set up for key user interactions
Event Tracking Documentation
This audit covers the main technical elements of a site and should help you uncover any issues that are holding a site back. As with any project, the deliverable is critical. I’ve found focusing on the solution and impact (business case) is the best approach for site audit reports. While it is important to outline the problems, too much detail here can take away from the recommendations. If you’re looking for more resources on site audits, I recommend the following:

Helpful tools for doing a site audit:
Annie Cushing’s Site Audit
Web Developer Toolbar
User Agent Add-on
Link Checker
SEObook Toolbar
MozBar (Moz’s SEO toolbar)
Screaming Frog
Your own scraper
Inflow’s technical mobile best practices

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!

For more including images see:

Technical Website Audit Checklist for 2015 page posted “By Mike Armstrong”

Content Repurposing Tips

New post on Online Marketing Hub

Falling Behind on Content? Catch Up With These Content Repurposing Tips
by christopherjanb
content marketing repurposing

Remember all that content you were going to have completed before you left for holiday break? Remember the editorial calendar that was going to include all of Q1 2015 that you scaled back to be only January, 2015, that you scaled back to be … well … nothing?

The holidays were great, and you were able to only half occupy your mind with pending work deliverables scheduled for early January. If you are like me, you even planned to use some of your off time to work ahead on a few work tasks, then the holiday events and the family fun got in the way (in a good way, of course).

But you know content is important to your business, and you’re definitely not alone: 86% of B2B companies are using content marketing. If you find yourself behind in your planning of content for your company’s blog these first few weeks after the holidays, you should consider repurposing content that performed well in 2014.

Why Repurpose Content?
Sometimes it’s important to recognize that some of the best content marketing we can produce is already in the works and actually may have done quite well in 2014.

Repurposing can take the form of a summary of successful content, a breakdown of larger content into smaller blog posts, or even a wrap-up of smaller pieces of content into a larger presentation or eBook.

Our own Lee Odden has pointed out five ways to repurpose content. These five repurposing methods bear repeating here.

Turn Powerpoint decks into articles / blog posts
Aggregate email interviews
Break up a long article you’ve had published
Repurpose press releases
Revise old blog posts
Know What has Worked and Why
Have a handle on your analytics and see what is doing best for your blog. At TopRankBlog, Lee identified some of our best social media marketing content to feature in the post Our Top 10 Social Media Marketing Posts of 2014. In looking at our blog’s analytics, Lee saw that the top read blog posts pertaining to social media marketing told a story of varying social networks, as well as social media conference coverage. The post received more than 1,300 shares on social media.

As he compiled this post, it became evident that several of the posts that he was curating were written by different TopRank team members. This offered the opportunity to repurpose the content by asking for input from each of the contributors.

I asked each contributor to the top five posts in Lee’s top 10 list, to share what they learned from putting the post together. These quotes I then used in the post 5 Lessons From Our Top Social Media Marketing Posts of 2014. By bringing in a number of different perspectives into a new blog post, I was able to earn our blog another 1,100+ social shares.

Get It On A Calendar
If repurposing some content buys you time to look ahead a bit in your blogging schedule, we highly recommend that your next step be to put together an editorial calendar. By now you’ve probably learned that editorial calendars and planning are the key to producing consistent content. Many successful marketers are already working off a Q1 2015 editorial calendar and probably have been since just before the end of the year.

There are plenty of editorial plan templates available, and many content management systems and automated marketing tools offer free templates that vary enough so that you can certainly find one that fits your needs.

If you’re looking at basic editorial calendar setup, our friends at Content Marketing Institute provide a great resource to set you up on the right path.

Repurposing On Purpose
To learn more about content repurposing, be sure to check out Lee’s presentation at Social Media Marketing World in March 2015:

How to Create Personalized Content for Specific Target Audiences Without Breaking the Bank.
Creating original content takes resources many small and medium sized businesses don’t have. Content curation and repurposing are great ways to gain more value from content investments, but at what cost to quality? Learn how to plan social content repurposing as a form of personalization that increases content relevancy, efficiency and impact.

For more see:

The Content Repurposing Tips page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”

Introducing 20 of the most influential words in marketing

Please find 20 of the most influential words in marketing:


The Introducing 20 of the most influential words in marketing page was posted “By Mike Armstrong” – The Voice of Social Media


Popular Posts from Yesterday…

How to Triple your Twitter following in just 10 mins a week:


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The “Popular marketing posts from our Cardiff Marketing Blog from yesterday…” page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”


31 #Blogging Tips – #BusinessTips

New post on Online Marketing Hub

31 Advanced Blogging Tricks
by christopherjanb
Are You Taking Full Advantage of These Blogging Tactics?
It’s Halloween. While it’s easy to become a witch just by wearing a big hat and black clothes, it’s not so easy to create a unique look like Wicked’s green-skinned Elphaba.

Unlike Halloween, blogging doesn’t have to be scary and we’ve got 31 advanced blogging tricks to maximize your business blog’s measurable results. (If you’re first starting a blog, check out our newbie blogging guide.)

Regardless of how long you’ve been blogging, you may need some help. Here’s why:

Over 50% of businesses who’ve blogged for 5+ years don’t leverage the full power of their blogs to generate measurable success according to Curata. [Note: Curata defined success as 10,000 pageviews per month.]

The biggest benefit of blogging is developing owned media that supports sales, improves search results and builds your brand.

31 Advanced blogging tricks
Here are 31 advanced blogging tricks to improve your blog results.

1. Set measurable goals associated with your business objectives
Attempting to be a Top 100 blogger in 6 months is a daunting task and won’t necessarily enhance your business.

Choose achievable targets that contribute to your business. Be as specific as possible. For example, write 2 articles per week that answer a customer question. This is the Marcus Sheridan approach: “They ask, you answer.”
2. Know your audience
As with any content, it’s critical to understand the people you’re trying to reach so that your posts resonate with them and keep them returning for more. To this end create a targeted persona for your blog.

Ask new subscribers for input regarding their pain points. I borrowed this tip from Derek Halpern. If someone registered, they’ll love you’re asking for their input. Try to respond to these emails. They not only help you understand your audience but also provide ideas for posts.
3. Select your blog topic with care
Since you need to focus your blog content, the more specific your niche, the better.
Your blog shouldn’t be the Wikipedia of your category.

Assess your market to see where there are untapped opportunities. This can be difficult for newbies to do. After you’ve gotten the hang of blogging and know your topic, you can step back and refine the focus of your blog.
Evaluate your URL. This is your blog’s address. Is it memorable and how does it work with your company or brand names? Is there value to some of the newer top-level domains?
4. Invest in your blog
Many bloggers start with a great burst of energy then quickly burn out. Your business blog requires resources both human (including content creation, copyediting, promotion and technology) and financial. Neil Patel spends a minimum of $20,000 per month on Quick Sprout.

Write longer posts. Don’t add filler. Provide unique, quality content. Cover the topic completely. To maximize social shares, write 2,500+ words based on Buffer’s analysis. While more work, the increase is significant. Halpern spends 80% of his time promoting his content.
5. Choose your keywords based on analysis
Don’t leave your keywords to chance. Integrate your keyword research into your editorial calendar to ensure that you’ve got posts for each keyword and phrase.

Use a tool like SEMRush to research your competitors to find the keywords for which they rank. RazorSocial’s Ian Cleary recommends using SEMRush to see keywords, estimated percentage of search traffic from those keywords, cost per click (if you advertised those keywords), and estimated search volume. If competitors gets traffic for these keywords, write better content to attract some of it.
Link to new posts from popular past posts. Part of the strength of a blog post is how it connects to the whole.
6. Keep your blog post ideas flowing
If possible, don’t leave your blog writing until the last minute. I find that when I start too late, my blog posts take twice as long to write and are half as effective. The average blog post is 800 words and takes 2.5 hours to write according to Orbit Media’s blogging research.

Create research or data. Andy Crestodina did a great job of this with his Blog Research. Find something new everyone takes as the truth. Crestodina got lots of links to his website and great guest opportunities.
Mine your email outbox for post ideas. Oribt Media’s Andy Crestodina recommends looking in your sent mail folder for relevant topics. It’s full of content. It reveals what your audience is asking for and, even better, you’ve already got the rough draft!
Get sales and customer service into the process. As your firm’s front that interacts with prospects and customers, Sheridan recommends, “Have sales blind copy your head blogger to capture the question and answer.” In addition to reducing the need to answer it multiple times, this post will shorten the sales cycle.
Become the Oprah of your niche. Get out and interview your influencers, customers or others. Gini Dietrich used to spotlight a social media follower for #FollowFriday. Now she reaches out to influencers. These posts perform well! (She wouldn’t keep doing them if they didn’t!) The Orbit Media blog profiles their employees. Who can you interview?
Mention influencers in your blog posts. Don’t just focus on the top. Consider people who are at the start of their career. Take a page from me and gather input from other influencers.
7. Convince readers to dive deeper into your content
Extend your visitors’ time on your blog by getting them to scan through your entire article and seek other related information on your blog. To this end, make sure that your recommended content stands out.

Include links to related content. On the Nielsen Norman Group’s blog, Hoa Loranger suggests using 5–7 related links per article to avoid overwhelming users. Place links at the end of each article immediately after the post. Frontload links with keywords.
8. Expand your media empire.
Offer your audience content in a variety of formats to expand your reach and build new segments of your audience.

Start a podcast to provide audio. Mike Stelzner is the poster child for podcasting. It’s the Friday feature of Social Media Examiner’s blog. BTW: Social Media Examiner 2014 research highlighted the podcasting opportunity to get an edge.
Get into pictures. Jay Baer has a regular video clip on his Convince and Convert blog.
Let me teach you. Jon Loomer tested the potential of webinars with a weekly Q&A. [Jon has since moved his webinars to a paid product.]
9. Get involved with your readers
While many bloggers consider comments to be nirvana and other complain about the spam, the bottom line is that your audience wants to engage and get your feedback. Here’s what The University of Queensland’s Dr. Stephanie Tobin found:

“[F]eelings of belonging are threatened when users stop generating content or participating online, and when information they have posted does not receive a response from others.”

Big tip of my hat to Gini Dietrich; she continues to respond to her Spin Sucks blog.

Encourage the conversation somewhere. Blogging powerhouse, Copyblogger, moved their conversation to Google+.
Use comment software (such as Disqus) to deter spammers. The goal is to eliminate most spam but not to prevent conversation. The harder the hoops you need your audience to jump through, the less they’ll participate.
10. Promote your blog everywhere
Like any other form of advertising, it’s important to continually get your message out. Your audience needs to see a promotion 5-7 times before they believe it and take action.

Email people you mention in your blog posts. Appeal to their egos!
Repromote your older blog posts. Many bloggers are onto the new, new thing. Focus on your best content and where appropriate update it.
Include a link to your blog (or latest blog post) in your email signature file. Even better, change this universally for everyone in your firm for all outgoing email.
Add a link to your blog to your customer service and purchase emails. These communications go to primary email accounts, not unread folders.
Spotlight relevant blog posts on your product pages. The drawback of this option is that it must be done manually. Another option is to add this to your blog publishing checklist.
11. Maximize your blog post reach on social media
Once isn’t enough on social media. You’ve got to build your community and continue to be active and engaged. (For help with your social media shares, check out what you can learn from 2.6 billion social shares. Includes charts!)

Leverage the power of your employees’ social media connections. Share your blog content within your organization and encourage your employees to share it amongst their colleagues. Of course, this assumes that you’ve got social media guidelines in place.
Serve your blog post more than once on Twitter. Chop up your blog post to provide multiple opportunities for sharing over a longer period of time, Each subsequent retweet gains about 75% of the previous number of retweets according to Tomasz Tunguz.
Include ClickToTweet and other social sharing buttons to extend your blog post’s life on social media.
Tap into Pinterest’s curation power. Create a pinboard for your articles. Then craft attractive pins for each of your blog posts. I got this great blog tip from Peg Fitzpatrick. But you don’t have to take our word for it. Buzzfeed has 2 staff members who curate Buzzfeed’s content on Pinterest.
Extend your Facebook reach with advertising. Jon Loomer is the king of Facebook Advertising recommends doing this with every blog post.
12. Give your best content to other top blogs
Spread the wealth of your information to other platforms.

Be strategic with your guest blogging efforts. Andy Crestodina plans his guest blogging to yield quality links and traffic. He averages 1 guest post per week. Dietrich gives a great explanation of this (as well as how to write headlines)
Do your homework before you ask. Don’t just send a fill-in-the-blank email to every blog. Understand their audience and determine if they accept guest posts. (Note: Actionable Marketing Guide does NOT accept guest posts.)
Actively engage on your guest posts with social shares and comment responses. Schedule it for prime time sharing. Because they have larger audiences and help to build your reputation by association.
13. Catch your visitors before they leave
Install OptinMonster or a similar tool to capture email addresses of readers as they exit your blog. This is a relatively non-invasive way to build your housefile.
The bottom line is that every blogger can continue to improve their craft regardless of how good they are.

I know I do.

I also know I’m not alone since bloggers like Neil Patel continue to document what they’re doing that succeeds.

Use these 31 advanced blogging tricks to take advantage of the full power of your blog to achieve your business objectives.

What is your favorite advanced blogging trick?

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen

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Blogging basics 201
Heidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies.
You can find Heidi on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.
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Return on Authenticity:
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According to research by Nielsen, 70 percent of global consumers trust online consumer reviews and rate reviews as the second most trusted form of advertising. And according to BazaarVoice, when it comes to trust, marketers may as well eliminate their own brand websites as a fountain of customer trust as only 16 percent of US consumers said they trust the content on a brand’s website compared to the 51 percent who trust content generated by other users.

Today’s digital currency is arguably authenticity, and what attracts customers – especially the digitally dependent, savvy millennial – is not just content. It is the delivery of authentic, unvarnished content from their peers.

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