July 2012 Newsletter

In This Issue:

Random Free Hosting Site

We'd like to congratulate Clacritter Designs for being the winner of this month's free site hosting. At the beginning of each month we will call up our own site's homepage. Whomever's site is the featured site when the page loads will get FREE hosting of one domain for one month. It's just our way of saying thank you.

A Better Way To Get Reviews

Review sites such as Yelp discourage review solicitation, but that doesn't mean you should shy away from letting consumers know about your Yelp presence? Ahhhhhhhhh, you DO have a Yelp page right??? If you don't, you need to make setting up a Yelp presence a priority. Hans religiously checks review sites before going to a restaurant, renting an apartment, or (it seems) just about anything else.

There is an important difference between aggressively asking for reviews and driving awareness about your business through platforms like Yelp. For example, you may want to think twice before telling every customer to “review me on Yelp,” because it can cause people to feel as if they’re being used as a promotional vehicle. This may leave some with a negative impression of your business. Also, those reviews might wind up getting filtered. A more subtle technique for driving awareness about your Yelp presence is just mentioning your site is on Yelp, but stopping short of asking for a review.

Here are a few simple strategies designed to increase Yelper engagement and build a solid online reputation without being overly solicitous:

  • Create a Check-in Offer - When mobile Yelpers check-in, they can let their friends on Yelp see what business they’re patronizing. Yelp users also have the option of sharing their check-ins on Facebook and Twitter. This means one check-in can simultaneously alert the user's fellow Yelpers, followers on Twitter, and friends on Facebook. A check-in offer is a great way to encourage your current customers to use this feature more often. Once someone checks in at your business we’ll prompt them to write a review when they log-in at www.yelp.com.

  • Use A Yelp Button - Ask us to stick a “Find us on Yelp” image on your Web site.

  • Add a Yelp Sign - Print a Yelp logo for your front counter or window. These have even been spotted on business-branded vehicles.

  • Update Your E-mail Signature - Include a link to your Yelp business listing in your e-mail signature with the words such as, “Check us out on Yelp.”

Ranking Tactics For A New Site

Google trusts Web sites more (and ranks them higher) that have been around for a long time. In addition, these Web sites had a lot of time to accrue good backlinks. If you have a new Web site, it will be difficult to compete with these established sites.

Fortunately, it is possible to compete with the big players if you have a new Web site. Here are a few tips that may help you to compete with established Web sites:

  1. Target the Right Keywords - If you have a new Web site, it's nearly impossible to get high rankings for competitive keyword phrases. Of course, you should include these keyword phrases on your Web pages but you should also optimize your Web pages for less popular keyword phrases not targeted by your competitors. If your competitors target the keyword "Fredericksburg TX bed and breakfast" you might optimize one of your pages for the keyword phrase "Texas Hill Country bed and breakfast". Even if your version of the keyword phrase gets only a fraction of the original keyword, you will still get more visitors than before.
    It is much better to rank number one for a slightly less popular keyword (you will get some visitors) than to rank number 60 for a very popular keyword (you will get no visitors).

  2. Target As Many Different Keyword Phrases As Possible - Repeat tip 1 with as many keywords as possible. For example, you might use "best Fredericksburg TX bed and breakfast", "recommended Fredericksburg TX bed and breakfast", etc. Even if each keyword delivers only some visitors, you will get many visitors with all keywords combined. Another advantage of getting high rankings for many of these long keyword phrases is that your Web site becomes relevant to a topic. The more high rankings your Web site has for keywords that are relevant to a topic, the easier it gets to get high rankings for more competitive keywords.

  3. Optimize Different Pages For Different Phrases - Optimize different pages of your Web site for different keyword phrases and optimize as many Web pages as possible. Persons who search for long keyword phrases (about 80% of searches) are usually persons who really care about the subject.

  4. Create Web Pages Ro Attract More Backlinks - Some Web pages on your site should generate revenue, others should help you to get backlinks. The more backlinks your Web site has, the higher your site's Link Popularity will be and the easier it is to get high rankings. One way to do this is to create Web pages that solve the problems of the Web searchers. Write "how to" articles or "what to do in our town" articles about a very special topic. These Web pages often get many backlinks. Of course, you should also actively build backlinks.

Getting high rankings for a new Web site may not be so difficult if you choose the correct way. Do not attack the competition directly. Start with many related keyword phrases and then proceed to the more competitive keyword phrases.

Old Article Worth Seeing Again

Other Ways To Get Back Links

1. Offer reasons to link to your Web site - What makes your company unique? How are you different to your competitors? Do you offer giveaways or competitions? Are there any news or stories about the people in your company? Create Web pages on your site that deal with that content so that other Web sites can link to these pages. Inform bloggers about your competitions or giveaways and let them review your products.

2. Check your business memberships - Are you a member in a business association? Have your company or your products received any awards? What are the governing bodies for your industry? Check if these Web sites link to your site and try to find new business associations that might be related to your business.

3. Leverage your offline relationships - Offline relationship you have with other businesses, people and publications can often be turned into online relationships that include links to your Web site.

4. Write testimonials - If you like the product of a company, send them a testimonial. Chances are the testimonial will be listed on the company Web site along with a link to your site.

5. Check your audience - Which Web sites, forums and networks are used by your customers? These Web sites and forums are the sites from which you should get links.

6. Benefit from sponsorships and social activities - Does your company sponsor any local activities? Do you support relief organizations? If you do, you can get direct links from the organizer of the activity and you can create linkworthy content on your Web site by writing about your activities.

7. Check your existing back links - Analyzing the Web sites that already link to your Web site can help you to get an idea of the linkworthy content on your Web site. You will also learn why other Web sites link to your site. It is very important that your Web site gets as many good back links as possible if you want to get high rankings on Google. Type "link: http://yourdomainname.com" into the Google search block to check who is linked to your site.

New Sites Joining Us Or Completed Recently/p>

Help these folks by visiting their site. All ya'll will remember how hard it is to get those initial "hits" so the search engines notice your site. So take a minute and visit their site.

  • Native Texan Horses - From his studio in Texas Hill Country, Master Craftsman Al Carr sculpts classic Victorian rocking horses, safety gliders, and carousel horses with a distinctive twist from his west Texas roots.

  • Serengeti Game Ranch - Serengeti Game Ranch located in the Texas Hill Country provides white-tailed deer and exotic game hunting. We are a private hunting preserve offering upland game bird hunting to include quail, pheasant and chukar. Our African hoofstock is used for reproduction and restocking purposes.