Tag Archives: website-marketing

How to Have the Most Successful Blog

Internet marketing has been an arising and successful way to promote your business. To a further extent, keeping a blog updated with new information is an effective way to advance your brand. To ensure your blog is the best it can be, Windy City Strategies has some helpful tips for you.

 

Keep your blogs consistent – Ensure your blog information is up to date with the best content. Writing a blog a week for your website will boost your brand online as well as keep your customers updated with fresh information.

 

Produce links – Utilizing links within your blog’s content will make it easier for customers to find you through the search engine. In addition, it gives you the choice to send the reader back to the home page of your company’s website.

 

Generate pages – If you are posting blogs on a weekly basis, this means that you are creating another page to your website every week. This will rank your brand higher in search engines.

 

Have various types of information –  Having different types of information throughout your blogs is an important factor to keep your customer interested. Connecting back to your company’s service is the big idea, this will increase online visibility.

 

Establish a connection to your clients – A skill in adapting your blogs is to make sure they appear personalized. Creating a connection between the company and the customer is an important element, the reader will see there is a side to the company that is just not for promoting their business.

 

All of these tips are vital to have an effective blog, this will make your brand more well-known. Contact Windy City Strategies today for more information on how to have the most successful blog.

SEM or Search Engine Marketing

Search Engine Marketing is one of the things we do best here at Windy City Strategies.  But sometimes, people don’t exactly know what that is.  So this blog post is to help explain it to our clients who may not know for sure.

A search engine is something going to www.google.com and putting in a search term like “Chinese Food” in the search bar, or searching for something on the web on Yahoo, or Bing.  Google is the most popular search engine, so we will use this as our example.

According to Google:  “The primary objective of any search engine is to help users find the information, products or services they’re looking for online, quickly and accurately. When the user types a word or phrase, called a query, into the search engine, a set of results that are relevant to the query is displayed.”

So- if you wanted to find a law firm in Crystal Lake- you might type in the search field “Law Firm, Crystal Lake”.

Windy City Strategies provides consultation and services in all areas of Search Engine Marketing-

The shaded area at the top of the page is called Pay-Per-Click advertising- this is a paid section, where your advertising will be posted to the top of the search engine.

The paid results are in the pink area, and the organic  (or Google selected) results are in the green area.  You will notice that there are local listings first in this green area.  That is the location portion of Google’s results- which displays local results from where your computer is searching from.

Windy City Strategies will help your business soar in the ultra-competitive web marketplace through our proven Internet marketing campaigns. We manage Google, Yahoo, and Bing accounts and we offer pay per click campaign management services as well as search engine optimization, website development, and internet marketing consultation. Please contact us for a free proposal and analysis.

Does Your Business Need A Website?

Many small business owners make the mistake of not having a website to sell their products and services, often missing out on potential revenue by their ability to broaden their exposure and increasing their audience, giving them a competitive edge.

In today’s technological world, it is especially important that small businesses are using things such as social media and websites in to help their customers and clients find them on the internet. Failure to do so can be detrimental to their business.

If your business does not have a website, then you should get one immediately! There are so many advantages to having one, including the following:

The potential to gain more customers. Your small business can be missing out on a lot of customers, especially if they can’t reach you. In fact, about 80% of Internet users in the United States from the ages of 14 and up will use the Internet to look up products and/or services.

Gives your business much needed online presence. In today’s world, the likeliness that people are going to pick up a phone book to search for your business is not great, instead most will go straight to the Internet to search for it. If they don’t see you listed online, they may think you are no longer in business, or do not even know that your business exists. Having an online presence will show your customers you do care, and you want them to continue coming to you for merchandise. That’s why having a website is very important for your business!

Increase your profits. Simply by being visible online, you can exponentially increase your profits by making your products and services readily available to everyone. Have you thought about the profits that you can potentially be making if you increase your user base?

You can better market your business. With making yourself available online, you are better able to retrieve feedback from emails, online surveys and social media functions, telling you how good your marketing is doing. There is also technologies that you can use to determine the type of people who visit your site, and what products or services they are searching for, using this information to build better business marketing strategies.

If you are need of a website for your business or help with your Internet marketing strategy, contact Windy City Strategies for more information today!

Windy City Strategies Named One Of The Top Digital Marketing Agencies

Windy City Strategies was named one of the top 19 digital marketing agencies in the Chicago area for 2017 by Expertise.com.

In order to be at the top of the list, the digital marketing companies that were reviewed had to meet certain criteria, such as:

  1. Reputation- A history of outstanding customer service and happy customers.
  2. Credibility- Building customer confidence with licensing, accreditations, and awards.
  3. Experience- Based on years of experience and education.
  4. Availability- Approachable and responsive to their customers.
  5. Professionalism- Provides service with honesty, reliability, and respect.

According to Expertise, Windy City Strategies made the list due to the following:

“Windy City Strategies has been one of the city’s premier digital marketing firms for more than a decade, providing targets solutions and innovative tools designed to help businesses succeed and grow. The award-winning company’s range of services includes customized website design, local and national search engine optimization, and pay-per-click advertising to draw in revenue and reach broader markets. The company also offers a free AdWords audit to first-time customers, giving businesses valuable insights into ways to improve current online tools and strategies.”

If you are interested in learning more about why Windy City Strategies is one of the best digital marketing companies in the Chicagoland area, then contact us for more information today!

What Is Pay Per Click Advertising and How Can It Help My Business?

One of the most successful online marketing techniques utilized by businesses these days is Pay per click marketing (PPC). You may be asking two things right now: What is pay per click advertising, and how can it help my business?

Windy City Strategies has some helpful information about a pay per click advertising campaigns, which will help you to decide if PPC is right for you and your business:

What is Pay Per Click Advertising?

Pay per click marketing (PPC) are paid keyword search campaigns. Your business will pay to have an ad posted on search engines, making you easier to find. When an Internet user clicks on your business’ ad, they will automatically be directed to your website. You, the advertiser, will only pay a fee when your ad is clicked.

In order to have an effective PPC marketing campaign, it is important that you have the right keywords; otherwise your campaign will be less effective and will result in a loss of potential traffic to your site. This is why PPC is not something that can be done once, but will take time, thought, and effort in order to ensure success.

How Can Pay Per Click Advertising Help My Business?

An effective PPC marketing campaign will drive more traffic to your website, which will often result in increased business for you. Here are the ways a PPC marketing campaign will drive traffic to your website:

  • Change and improve your campaign ads
  • Expand your keyword lists
  • Organize your keywords and ad groups
  • Analyze the data, improving your actions based on these results
  • Filter unwanted keywords, create a negative keywords list to refrain from using these again
  • Continually monitor your campaign’s progress

How Do I Run a Successful Pay Per Click Advertising Campaign?

Pay per click and search engine optimization (SEO) require continuous updating. Not only it is critical to understand the importance of staying on top of managing your PPC campaign, but it will help you to stay ahead of your competition as well.

In order to do so, it may be essential to hire a PPC and Internet marketing firm, like Windy City Web Designs. We not only manage your AdWords account for you, but help you to ensure you are using the most effective and affordable keywords to drive traffic to your website.

Windy City Strategies is Chicagoland’s leader in Internet marketing and web design. From custom web designs, to successful Internet marketing and PPC campaigns, we are available to meet your business’ specific needs.

Basic Tips for Medical Web Design

  1. Make sure your medical website design looks professional and is visually pleasing to your visitors.  Use neat layouts, uniformed navigation and keep your text in colors and sizes that are easy to read and in a web friendly font.

  2. Make sure the website displays and behaves properly on all major web browsers in various versions:  Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Google Chrome and Safari.

  3. Be sure to optimize each page with include page titles and headings, use bullet points and shorter sentences when possible and include relevant keywords on all pages.

  4. Do not auto-play music or videos.  Users overwhelmingly prefer to start these actions on their own.  If they are forced on them, more often than not, they will leave your site.

  5. Be sure content for your medical website is relevant to what you do and include lay-friendly patient education on your services and treatments.  Double and triple check spelling and grammar.

  6. Be sure that the contact phone number is in the header of all pages on the website.  If you have multiple practice locations, each with a different phone number, have a clear ‘Contact Us’ section that is accessible from any page.  Have a clear call to action for Appointment Requests on your pages.

  7. Don’t overload the pages with heavy graphics and videos.  They may cause some user’s browsers to operate slowly or crash.

  8. Always remember the obvious.  Include office hours, information on after hours contact, and insurance information.  If your website features downloadable forms, make sure that they can be opened from any platform.

  9. Where possible, offer online appointment requests.  This insures that you capture those that visit your site during your off hours, at nights and on weekends.  If you are closed they can’t call, but if there is a form to complete, they will use it.

  10. Be sure that all hyperlinks (both internal and external) are clearly visible and that they function correctly.

  11. Add a mobile version of your medical website.  The latest statistics tell us that 1/3 of internet traffic is now done on a mobile device.  It is important to offer those visitors a version of your site that works within the phone, fits the phone screen and allows for easy tapping of phone numbers and maps.  Also be sure you use code that detects when a visitor is coming to your site from a phone and automatically directs them to that version.

  12. Contact Windy City Strategies today to get started on building or improving the website that belongs to your medical practice.

Ways to Implement Your Internet Marketing Strategy

An effective marketing strategy is essential in any business plan. Much like traditional marketing, Internet marketing can help to build customer relationships and create brand awareness. However, implementing an online marketing plan is not as easy as a traditional one. It is best to seek professional Internet marketers, like ours at Windy City Strategies, to ensure your strategy is not only effective, but is designed to your specific needs. Here are some types of strategies you may consider for your business:

1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)- A good SEO campaign can drive results and traffic to your site, but this happens over time. SEO works to make popular search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo recognized your website so that your organic search results will rank higher on search results pages.

2. Pay-Per-Click (PPC)- With PPC, you can be provided with almost immediate results. The main difference with PPC is that you essentially pay per click on your ad. This is a very cost-effective way to market your business since you can set a budgeted limit on clicks.

3. Content Marketing- Usually this method is used in combination with a good search engine marketing plan. By producing relevant content you can attract current and potential customers with information that they are looking for. Additionally, content is also effective when attractive images and videos are added to your site as well.

4. Social Media- Nothing is more important these days than being social media ready. By establishing a positive presence on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, you not only are able to promote your brand, but target a specific audience for your business.

5. Blogging- Another way to add more credibility with the search engines, increasing your rankings, is by creating a blog. When blogging about relevant information, your business will be looked to as a go-to professional, further developing long-lasting relationships with your customers.

Windy City Strategies will work with you to create an individualized marketing plan that fits your business needs. Contact us to speak with our team of professional marketers, writers, and designers to find out how we can help your business grow online and stand out amongst your competitors.

By Bjorn Torling

5 Internet Marketing Trends for 2014

With another year in the history books, it is time to reflect upon the past year and look ahead to see what we can expect for 2014. The last year seemed to have had many hot trends like social media growth, an increase in use of mobile devices and tablets, and the increased importance of relevant content on a website. While I don’t expect to see any of those trends to go anywhere over the next year, I do expect to see content continue it’s reign as king.

Here are a few other web marketing trends to look out for:

1. Mobile is a must. Since the use of mobile devices is on the rise, it is essential for businesses, especially small businesses, to consider responsive web design. By ensuring your website is mobile-friendly, you are able to stay competitive and increase the potential to be found and seen by mobile users.

2. Niche sites are growing. Due to media giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, websites will have a harder time being found organically. For this reason, niche sites are going to become more in demand, especially for smaller businesses looking to get connected to a more specific audience.

3. Write a blog. Blogging is a prime example of the use of relevant content and is an effective way to market your brand. Since blogging is becoming more popular, especially amongst smaller businesses, I think it is safe to say most businesses will have developed a blog by the end of 2014.

4. Get a Google+ account. Since the use of social media giant Facebook appears to be on the decline, other social media networks will be looking to take over. Google+ is a rapidly growing network that has added benefits, such as the search benefits that comes from using Google, that all businesses need to be taking advantage of.

5. Include videos on your website. In order to create a more meaningful relationship with your users, the use of educational videos is on the rise. By providing informational snippets, the consumer can better understand what you have to offer.

The way you market your brand is essential to your business. By hiring a professional Internet marketing firm, you can ensure that your users know your value all the while increasing your business’ profitability. Our team of Internet marketing professionals at Windy City Strategies will work with you to develop an individualized business plan that fits your needs, whether it be from search engine optimization to web design, we can help.

Get Rid of Unwanted, Negative SEO

How to Minimize Negative SEO

Negative SEO is a lot more art than science.  Making someone else “look bad” requires looking at their individual situation and identifying weaknesses.  However, there are some general tips you can take to minimize the amount of bad and low quality links your site will get, and stop handing things out on a silver platter.

RSS Advertising Links

RSS links are never strong and low quality at best.  Google usually ignored and discounted them.  Due to Google’s new lower threshold for negative links creating problems, it is recommended not to use this technique.

DMCA Take-down Notices

You don’t need to spend all of your time engaging in the pursuit of DMCA justice; just take care of the biggest offenders every 3-6 months.

Who Can Help

Windy City Strategies knows how to navigate the internet.  Being an internet marketing company, we specialize in SEO and other techniques to increase your listing, gaining more traffic to your website.  Unlike regular internet marketing firms, Windy City Strategies knows how to make your negative reviews a thing of the past!

The Overview

  • Understand Google’s algorithm is changing and sometimes you will need to adapt to accommodate those changes.

  • Stop making theft of your content easy.  Realize you can’t prevent it 100% but stop handing it to people on a silver platter.

  • Stop automatically manufacturing low quality links:  They will probably do more harm than good.

  • DMCA violations:  Go after the biggest offenders every few months.

  • Do everything within your power to resist the temptation to avoid low quality links.  Everyone gets them and it is unavoidable, but don’t encourage the practice.

  • Find an internet marketing company to help you with your site.

World Wide Optimization

The Internet has broadened websites’ audiences inevitably but some websites haven’t geared themselves up for the global stage. Our internet marketing team at Windy City Strategies has compiled a list of strategies that can help take you national.

1. Keep your audience in mind.

Now this may sound simple; it’s a skill basic to marketing. However when businesses decide to expand overseas, it’s best to find someone to help you understand how to localize properly. Find out about their pop culture, their trends, it’ll pay off in the long run. The slight differences can be missed, altering a campaign’s effectiveness immensely. If your business knows how to cater to certain audiences, your business will fit right it.

2. Speak their language.

Running your content through an online translator won’t cut it. Even moving State to State domestically can change the way the locals use words. To grasp how certain audiences find your products, a little research helps you figure out your impression on your new audiences. To start study your competitors, read their customers’ reviews, evaluate their campaign. To get really get local, talk to industry people abroad and ask their opinion. Make the effort to find out about a new audience, and they’ll gladly pay attention to your business.

3. Be visible abroad.

Showing up on foreign search engines is important to reaching a new audience. For example, in China Baidu reigns king, and without a clear strategy for tackling, listing yourself, and appearing on these sites, you won’t reach the audience you aim for. How do you get yourself seen though? Try incorporating different language options for your website. Use localized keywords. Most importantly, don’t forget the SEO basics.

To tap into a new market with your internet marketing campaign, contact Windy City Strategies today.