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SEO is Changing, is Your Business Ready?


SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is synonymous with change. Every time you turn around, Google is prioritizing one thing over another, causing SEO professionals to shift their focus according to the algorithm for that time period. Although these changes might seem completely random, believe us, Google has a method to their madness. 

If you think about it, why do people use Google? Most of the time, it’s to find answers to their questions. Whether they’re searching for a location, product, service, or finding out how tall their favorite celebrity is, Google’s goal is to answer your questions. It does this by controlling what you see and how you see it, which is a little scary for a lot of people, but that’s a topic for another day. It analyzes trends and builds upon them to create changes, forging a path for the internet to move forward. 

From a bird’s eye view, Google is constantly changing based on the way users search for information. This doesn’t just impact billion-dollar companies, it affects small businesses all around you who invest in digital marketing and SEO. 

In this article, we’ll:

  • Review the basics of local SEO
  • Dig into the changes happening in local SEO
  • Explain What this means for small businesses
  • Define long-tail keywords
  • Explain how AI (Artificial Intelligence) is influencing the SEO landscape. 

What is Local SEO?

At its core, local SEO is when a business attempts to enhance their online presence without the use of ads in their local community. Companies who invest in local SEO generally have the same goal in mind: rank in one of the top three spots in Google’s local pack and organic listings. 

For those unfamiliar with the terms local pack and organic listings, the local pack is the section at the very top of the search engine results page with a short list of three companies that includes a link to their website, phone number, directions to their business, etc. To view more businesses, you click on the more places tab. The organic listings are a list of companies directly below the local pack, usually accompanied by Google Ads. 

Investing in local SEO means your business is targeting people who are searching with local intent, often using the term “near me” or the name of the city/town after the main keyword to find their desired results. 

Recent Changes in Local SEO

About 20 years ago, if a small business had one page with a few keywords sprinkled throughout the content, they were way ahead of the game. As time went on, companies had to adapt if they wanted to remain competitive, so web design and SEO strategies became more and more detailed. 

Let’s fast-forward to modern day SEO. Digital marketing has reached a state of relevancy to the point that 71% of all small businesses have a website and nearly half of small businesses invest in SEO. Staying up to date with the changes Google throws your way is essential to becoming or remaining relevant online. 

So, what are some of these recent changes?

    • Focusing on on-site and off-site SEO – It’s no longer enough to focus solely on what’s happening on your website, but it’s essential to establish an overall digital presence that complements your site. (social media, backlinking, Google Business Profile which was formerly known as Google My Business, etc.)
    • Creating an exceptional user experience on all devices – Having a website that looks good and functions at a high level on desktop, tablet, and mobile is critical to SEO efforts. In fact, in recent years, Google has prioritized mobile friendliness over desktop. 
    • Creating long-form content is a major priority in the eyes of Google – It wasn’t long ago where doing 400-500 word articles would help you rank online. Now the standard is 1,200-1,500 words. 
    • Optimize quality images throughout your site – For a while, imagery was seen as secondary content on a website, but producing high quality images is now a primary focus for Google. 
    • Last, but certainly not least, Google is falling in love with websites that are voice search friendly – Whether it’s via phone, Alexa, Siri or any other device, nearly 50% of all search queries are done via voice search.

What It Means For Small Businesses

Tracking and implementing Google updates into your SEO and digital marketing strategy can have groundbreaking effects on your business. Generally, people searching for products or services on Google are an untapped resource of potential customers. These individuals haven’t fully decided which company they want to go with, so they turn to the most powerful search engine in the world to guide them. 

Although Google is ever-changing, there’s one thing that hasn’t wavered: the results of those businesses who rank at the top of the local pack on organic results. Year after year, at least 50-60% of ALL clicks go to the top 3 search engine spots. 

Oftentimes, it doesn’t require landing a top three ranking for an entire city or region to yield the sought after results. Over the last 2 years, there has been a 200% increase in “near me” related searches. For example, users are searching for “salon near me,” “restaurants near me,” or “web design company near me,” now more than ever. For individuals who think this is a trend that will eventually fade, the number of near me related searches increased by 900% from 2017-2019! 

Thinking about ranking at the very top of an industry for an entire region might sound daunting for companies new to SEO. But these incredible statistics prove that outranking competitors within close proximity of your business can still provide astounding results. 

What Are Long-Tail Keywords?

Long-tail keywords are longer, more specific keywords or phrases that are used when the consumer is closer to the point of purchase or used with voice search. The more commonly used short-tail keywords are shorter phrases that generally refer to broad search topics. 

For example: 

Short-tail keyword – Cat food near me

Long-tail keyword – Organic cat food for sensitive stomachs near me

While long-tail keywords generally have a much lower search volume than short-tail keywords, they help the user find exactly what they are looking for. A great time to consider long-tail keywords is if the generic short-tail terms have extremely high competition and there’s minimal opportunity to rank for those terms. 

The key is discovering the long-tail keywords people are searching for and strategically using them throughout your on- and off-site content. If you offer a very niche product or service within your general scope of offerings, it might be worth it to research these long-tail keyword topics.  

What is AI and How Has it Changed SEO?

Long-tail keywords are growing in popularity because of the way people are searching online. Creating conversational-based content on your website is of growing importance. As previously mentioned, 50% of people are doing search queries via voice search. The more this number increases and the more data Google can gather from these searches, the more the emphasis on long-tail terms will increase. This has everything to do with Artificial Intelligence, or AI. 

Artificial Intelligence is a wide-ranging branch of computer science concerned with building smart machines capable of performing tasks that typically require human intelligence.

Yes, that sounds a little scary and iRobot-esque. But we’ve all been living with AI for years. The reality is that your smartphone, Alexa, Siri, email spam filter, and, yes, the Netflix recommendation setting you use on a daily basis, is AI. 

AI functions differently than normal search patterns. People ask Alexa, “Where should I go for dinner?” but they might search “dinner near me” while typing on their phone or computer. 

This ties in with how SEO is evolving around AI and voice search patterns. Think about it: when you ask Alexa or your phone a voice search question, it tends to be “long-tailed.” And if Google is evolving based on the searches people are inquiring about, it’s essential to be aware of this and adapt to the changes. 

Since people are continuing to search for products and services as if they’re having a conversation, creating conversational content is growing in importance. 

This means discovering what long-tail keywords people are searching for in your industry, and implementing these into your digital presence to create a personalized experience for the user. 

For some companies, adding long-tail keywords and AI voice search patterns into your digital strategy isn’t applicable yet. But some businesses in heavily searched, high-volume industries center their entire strategy around voice search and long-tail terms. 

No matter what boat you’re in, remaining vigilant of these changes will help your business remain relevant online. 

You Need a Trusted Partner

Things are changing in SEO, and unless you’re a full-time SEO professional, it’s nearly impossible to stay on top of all the trends. The fact is, SEO is just one piece to the digital marketing puzzle. 

If SEO makes sense for your brand, it’s essential to find a trusted partner to guide you through the process – and even let you know if SEO matches your company goals and overall business strategy. 



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Internet Businesses Tips

Best 30 Ways To Make Money Doing Easy Online Tasks


If you’ve ever wanted to find out how to easily earn a couple of extra dollars this is the blog post to read. You will learn where you can sign up and make money by doing easy online tasks.

The EASIEST Ways To Earn Extra Cash Online…

There are a whole lot of simple things you can do on your phone, tablet, or computer to make a few more dollars and with very little effort. All it will take is a few minutes of your time each day.

Today I’ll share with you 30 ways in which you can earn money online doing the simplest of tasks whether at home or on the move.

30 Simple Ways to Earn Doing Easy Online Tasks

User Testing

If you spend a lot of time surfing the net why not get paid to do so? With User Testing you can sign up and get paid to test websites by providing feedback and testing the usability of a site and sharing your honest opinions. 

To qualify you will need to complete a short test. You will then be assigned testing gigs and get paid via PayPal.

Read my full Review: UserTesting Review: Get Paid $10 to Test Websites from Home

Creations Rewards

Creations Rewards is a great site to not only earn extra money but you can earn gift cards too. Earn points by taking surveys, watching videos, and visiting websites. 

You can also earn cashback online and refer friends and family to make a small commission.

Swagbucks

This popular reward site is used by over 10 million users and each day over 7000 gift cards are sent out to participants. 

You can earn $5 on sign up and take part in surveys, quizzes, watch videos and make Swagbucks points that can be redeemed as cash via PayPal and gift cards.

You May Also Like: SwagBucks Review: 10 Fun Ways To Make Money Online in Your Downtime

Microsoft Rewards

If you’re already a Microsoft user take advantage and sign up to take part in games, quizzes, searches, and online shopping to earn points on Microsoft Rewards.

TopCashBack

Although this site is not about earning money directly, it definitely saves you money. 

TopCashBack allows you to make huge savings on thousands of well-known brands. 

All you have to do is sign up to your favorite retail stores through their platform to get great cashback deals.

Mr Rebates

This site follows the same principle as TopCashBack. You can join and shop from your favorite stores and earn cashback. 

The minimum payout amount is $10 via PayPal, Amazon gift card, Venmo or check. You can also earn money by joining their referral program.

Zoombucks

Take surveys, watch videos, and do small online tasks to make quick money online with Zoombucks. 

A points system is used that you redeem for cash via PayPal. You can also earn additional points when you refer others.

MyPoints

With MyPoints you can get paid with gift cards or Paypal by watching videos, reading emails, playing games, and taking surveys. This can all be done a few minutes a day.

Inbox Dollars

This is another well-known site that gives you the chance to make a few more dollars. On sign up you will get $5 as a first-time user. 

It follows the format of completing short surveys, playing games, watching videos, reading emails, receiving coupons, and getting cash back from well-known brands.

You can sign up for Inbox Dollars here.

Enroll

With Enroll you get to share your feedback by answering questions on how well a product or service website looks and works. You are then paid via PayPal for taking part.

Ibotta

There’s nothing like getting a great deal and using Ibotta will help you achieve that. 

With Ibotta you can earn cash back every time you shop. Just sign up and use the app to get the latest deals on top brands. The cash will go directly to your linked bank account.

You can sign up for Ibotta here.

Fusion Cash

Get $5 on sign up to Fusion Cash. On this site, you can complete surveys, get paid to watch videos, do simple online tasks, play games, and refer friends.

Second to None

If you enjoy shopping, becoming a mystery shopper for Second to None might be a good option for you. Choose your assignment according to your schedule and get paid for your fair assessment and feedback. 

You must have good observational and communication skills and have access to a smartphone and pc or laptop. High-speed internet is also a requirement.

Tada

You can save on everyday groceries and popular retail stores by using the Tada app. 

Sign up to get the automatic $5 bonus and get up to 20% cashback by scanning your receipts. Redeem your cash through PayPal or gift cards.

Extrabux

Earn cashback from popular retail outlets when you shop online with Extrabux. Get money-off coupons and also a $20 bonus on signing up. 

You can get paid to shop at over 20,000 stores and be rewarded with a payout via PayPal, gift cards, check, and directly to your card if you’re a Visa cardholder.

Rakuten

You may already be aware of this site as it was previously known as Ebates. You can get great cashback deals and refer-a-friend options to earn extra money.

You can cash out via Paypal and you and a friend can each earn $30 on the refer a friend referral program.

Be Frugal

The title says it all. Be Frugal helps you to save money when making any purchases. Choose from over 5000 stores to shop from and use the many methods to cash out your payment. Join for free to get a $10 bonus.

Cash4Offers

Another site where you can do the simple tasks of playing games, completing surveys, read emails and refer friends for extra money.

BestMark

You can sign up as a mystery shopper on BestMark and start earning a little extra money on the side  This company has a long history. To apply fill out the application form.

Survey Junkie

This is one of the well-known market research companies where you can fill out online surveys and get paid for your opinions. 

You can make money instantly on Survey Junkie and redeem your cash as gift cards or through PayPal.

You can sign up for Survey Junkie here.

Prize Rebel

Use a spare few minutes during your coffee break to make money doing easy tasks by filling out surveys online, watching videos, and sharing referrals. Get paid via PayPal or any of your favorite gift cards.

Opinion Outpost

Are you always offering your opinion or giving free reviews of products and services? Why not get paid for your thoughts instead by signing up to Opinion Outpost? 

You could earn points by filling out surveys and cash them out via PayPal, Visa prepaid card, or Amazon gift card. 

Go here to can sign up for Opinion Outpost here.

Dosh

The cashback app Dosh is a great way to save and get money back from eating out, travel and shopping. It’s super simple to use. 

Download the app and it will automatically give you cash back on your purchases straight to your PayPal, Venmo, or Jelli accounts or you can choose to donate your savings to charity.

Paribus

Paribus, a Capital One partner keeps an eye on your online purchases and gives you a refund if there is a reduction in price. You are then paid the price difference into your Paribus account.

AmazonMTurk

If you prefer a more gig-based task to do you can join Amazon Mechanical Turk. Here you can do simple tasks like short transcriptions, data entry, data tagging, image verification, content writing, translation, surveys and many more small tasks.

ClickWorker

Similar to AmazonMTurk but with a better rate of pay. You can join Clickworker and work from anywhere in the world and carry out basic tasks. 

You can do writing, translating, researching, and data processing. Payment is made to you via PayPal, Payoneer, and SEPA.

Microworkers

This is another site that offers micro-jobs that will only take you a few minutes. The more digital tasks you can do, the more you can earn.

JobBoy

This is an online marketplace that you can join to do micro-jobs. JobBoy also offers a referral program when you share their site with others and you get paid in cryptocurrency for doing small tasks.

Pinecone Research

You can test and research products and services through Pinecone Research. Share your ideas on how a brand can improve their new or existing products and get paid quickly via PayPal.

Analysia

To make a little cash on the side use the helpful guides that are on the Analysia site. You are provided with clear instructions on how to provide product testing, user testing, and take quick surveys. 

The site also helps you to avoid any pitfalls such as what to look for to avoid scam sites.

Final Thoughts on Doing Easy Online Tasks

Now that you have this list of 30 ways to get paid doing simple tasks why not start using your cell phone or laptop during your spare time to actually make or save money.

Although these sites and apps won’t make you rich you can still earn money. Most of these quick tasks don’t require any experience and are open to an international audience.

Take the time to look through each one and sign up to the ones that fit in with your schedule. 

As stated before these little tasks only take a few minutes of your time so while you’re watching your favorite TV program or listening to a podcast why not do a quick survey on your cell phone and earn a few extra dollars.

You might not make a full-time income from it but the payments can help towards paying off small expenses or go towards savings.

If you know someone who would be interested in this post why not share it with them?



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Internet Businesses Tips

All About Google Ads: What it is and How Can it Benefit My Business?


Google Ads may seem simple up front, but it’s evolved into a rather complex form of advertising, and it’s safe to say that anyone engaged in marketing in this day and age should have at least a basic understanding of Google Ads. So, how do we start to explain one of the largest portions of our industry? Let’s start with a hypothetical example.

The Road Trip and the Question

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved road trips. Family vacations often meant hours in a car, watching Titanic with my brother on a portable VHS player and annoying our parents to no end. While the old adage, “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey,” is a bit played out, it holds a lot of truth as I think back to my childhood. In some instances, those car rides are more memorable than the vacations themselves.

I still enjoy spending time on the road, taking in the countryside, and visiting new places, but sometimes the interstate is unforgiving. Going countless miles without an exit is torturous when you’re hungry, and when an exit finally appears you’re forced to eat whatever’s available. You’re given limited options in an untimely manner.

Now imagine: what if, the moment your stomach started growling, three restaurant signs automatically appeared in the distance?

These signs wouldn’t just be EASY to see, but would be for restaurants you were thinking about while driving. After looking at the signs and deciding on which restaurant is most appealing to you, the interstate would immediately present you with an exit leading to that restaurant. No obstacles, no waiting, just the immediate satisfaction of your needs.

This situation is obviously hypothetical, but it’s actually a good way to think about how Google Ads works. It’s worth noting that these ads have a lot of names — Google Ads, CPC, PPC, SEM — but for the sake of simplicity we’ll refer to them as Google Ads (formerly known as Adwords).

What Is Google Ads?

Whether you realize it or not, you’re familiar with Google Ads. Not only do they appear at the top of Google search results, meaning they’re the first thing you see when looking for a product or service, but they appear as display ads on countless websites across the internet. Multiple times a day, every day, you’re presented with Google Ads.

How Exactly do Google Ads Work?

As the name suggests, the ads you see at the top of Google search results are just that: ads. Businesses that want to advertise with Google choose a list of closely-related keywords to bid on—yes, bid, just like in a silent auction. But in this case, advertisers choose how much they’re willing to bid on each individual keyword. Then, every time a user searches for that keyword, Google analyzes the different bids from each advertiser and determines which ads “win” (based on the amount of the bid and their quality score, which helps determine which sites present users with the most relevant information) and can be shown at the top of search engine results. There are also lots of other places you can run similar ads, including Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more. Part of running an ads campaign is finding out what other online advertising platforms are out there and which one is right for you.

There are a lot of strengths when it comes to Google Ads, but there are two that stand out:

  • The ability to control who sees your ads (based on geographic location, bidding on specific keywords, etc.), and
  • The ability to reach customers at opportune moments, i.e. at the moment a user is actively looking for a product/service, meaning they’re much more likely to buy.

To continue our road trip analogy, Google Ads give you the control to put ready-made billboards in front of interested people. Without our hypothetical, automatically-appearing billboards, you’re at the mercy of how the road was built and what businesses decided to open shop along the way. Even if you want some food and are ready to buy it, you have to wait until you happen upon an exit. This can be frustrating and inconvenient—especially when you’re looking for something specific. Online users feel the same way regarding services and products. They want to find the solution to their issue, and they don’t want to dig through Google to find it.

If the interstate worked like Google ads, things would be very different.
And you wouldn’t have access to all the insightful metrics Google provides. Let’s say the above hypothetical were true: you’re driving along hungry and you begin to think about your options, realizing you’re really craving a burger. Instead of crossing your fingers and hoping that the next exit will have a good burger place — only to be let down by a Subway and a Starbucks — the Golden Arches appear on the horizon. A path opens up, and you make your way to the drive-thru.

This is a win for you because you were easily able to find what you were craving. It’s also a win for McDonald’s because they were easily able to capture your attention instead of wasting time on someone who was craving a turkey sandwich.

If McDonald’s decided they didn’t want to advertise in this way, they’d be at a big disadvantage on the road. Even if a consumer loves their food, they would only see the competition when they became hungry. And since McDonald’s is nowhere to be seen, they’ll go with another option — because ultimately they just want to feed themselves.



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