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Seo help

Discussion in 'Business Management' started by lmasontreeservice, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. ValleyFirewood

    ValleyFirewood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Google business. It will put your company on Google Maps, and in the search.

    Like if I search "firewood" on Google my company is the 1st listing. (I'm guessing Google uses location to see what's closest?)

    $700/month is nuts for that website they made. I don't pay that for a year and my site is quite a bit that that simple "cookie cutter" page. (Not trying g to be rude, but for that kind of money I'd expect a VERY NICE website)

    Facebook helps... pics of work, updates, etc...

    Craigslist, Angie's List, etc.

    Craigslist works real well. I put some ads up for lumber about 2 months ago and the shop has done more in the last 3 months for lumber sales than ALL of last year.


    I got a mailer from YP today to get listed in the Yellow Pages. Can't say I've used a yellow pages phone book in 10+ years... does anyone anymore vs Google?

    Anyhow they wanted about $225 per quarter to be listed in the phone book. Yeah... no thanks!

    I did a radio ad 2 years ago and it worked too well. Even with 3 guys working at least 12hr days I still had to turn away a lot of business as I was backlogged so bad!

    Hope that helps.
     
  2. blades

    blades Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Depending on your business and time of year- radio can be ok- for me it has not panned out. This is another black hole for dollars as prime advertising time is quite pricy. With radio as with TV it is repetition that gets the job done- and that there is the gottcha part that will drain your wallet faster than my V10 truck drains its gas tank.
     
  3. Druidess

    Druidess ArboristSite Lurker

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    Looks like L. Mason's site is down (I'm late to the conversation). I tend to think less in terms of SEO as I do in "Embrace the Google" since frankly this is how you are going to get found. No company can guarantee top of the heap placement as Google is always changing its strategies and search algorithms to determine what will be relevant to someone's search. So the top thing you have to have is a mobile-supported website, or you might as well walk away. Second thing is to Google Your Business.

    After that, the more organic your site is to your locale, the content uses terms that people are going to search for, and keeping it updated and fresh with a blog or some other newsy-update helps. Social media and directories that get you reviews from users will also boost you in relevance.

    That said, the hundreds of dollars a month for services is probably overkill. Social media attention is only a necessary 1-2 hours a week to post something interesting. Most website platforms like Wordpress and Weebly do a good job and you can probably get a decent site for $1,500-2,500 initial development of the site. Ask for a breakout of what the site work costs, added features like Mailchimp newsletter management, or posting to social media two times a week.

    YP is actually outsourced to a company in the UK called Hibu. Run away!

    Carol
     
  4. HLSupply

    HLSupply Outdoor Power Equipment Parts

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    Think of YP the way you'd think of a tree service that hires innercity kids out of high school who haven't seen trees before. It's like a sweat shop of cheap labor. Now think of Adwords as "rented" listings, and think of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) of your own Web properties (Web site, social page, forum like this one) as "owned" listings that you earn (and that may change slightly over some time). They change because of conditions outside of your control i.e. search engine algorithm changes, or things that your competitors do to bump you. Changes can happen in both Adwords (or any PPC system for that matter), and in your SEM. Neither is permanent. Neither is "set it and forget it." Both take constant work and management. Doing your own SEM is very time consuming and you have to know what to do and how & where to do it. Still there are no guarantees. You get out what you put in (or pay in).

    It is important to note that if you spend thousands on Adwords and quit, you will disappear. Do the same in SEM and you will still exist at whatever position in the searches you had earned up to the time you quit, until competitors knock you down lower in ranking or an algo change deems you to be less relevant for whatever KEY TERMINOLOGY you were ranking for.

    Therein lies the rub. It's all about the terminology used by the people conducting the searches. They don't all use the same wording to find companies that do the work you do. You have to know (not guess) the key words before you even begin. I can give you tons more on this subject if you ask.
     
    ATH likes this.
  5. ATH

    ATH Addicted to ArboristSite

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    HL: So how to "normal" folk search for a professional arborist and tree care services? I have always taken guesses, but it sounds like you have done more research into it that I.
     
  6. Druidess

    Druidess ArboristSite Lurker

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    You probably will want to get the phrases that match your business and what you write for you website, for example, you might do better with "tree removal" than you would with "arborist" or "tree service" if that is the bulk of your business. Designated "Tree Cities" around America may associate an "arborist" with "tree care" more so than a non-Tree City designated town. So perhaps thinking of your main service as the likeliest search first, and perhaps pick a couple of alternatives to go with it--if 80% of your business is "tree removal" you might partner it with "stump grinding". Then make sure that your text has the phrases occurring on the pages at least once, maybe twice. Don't get carried away with usage of the phrase, it just doesn't read naturally to a normal person.

    You can try terms and phrases out on Google's Keyword Planner to see how much a term is searched, and you don't necessarily have to have a campaign set up and paid for to do so. Check it out here: https://adwords.google.com/KeywordPlanner.
     
    ATH likes this.
  7. ATH

    ATH Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Thanks...that is a great resource on Google. I know what I do...but what do normal people call what I do? That link will help.
     
  8. HLSupply

    HLSupply Outdoor Power Equipment Parts

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    @ATH, remember to use "longtails" in your writing and "theme" a page around an idea. Don't try to write in, "stump grinding" several times on a page (I'm just guessing that you provide that service). It is certainly about what the searchers think to type in a search engine, and not what the industry jargon may be. As I wrote above, "They don't all use the same wording to find companies that do the work you do." Some may search for "stump grinding services" or "stump grinding" and some might look for "stump grinders in Detroit, MI" and some might look for "stump grinders Detroit" and some might want to see listings for "Detroit stump grinders" or just "stump grinders" or "tree stump grinders". (Yes, those are each different in the search engines' "eyes"!) You won't be able to win listings for all of those phrases with just one Web page.

    What's a Web page? You have to write a minimum of 300 words, and have a fair density of existence of the targeted phrase. That's why you cannot have too many various phrases targeted to one page. You can write blog posts that are thousands of words long and target longtails along with some root words for the "theme" of it all. Still, three or four targeted key terms would be the limit in a lengthy post. Include them in the HEADINGS, the main targeted one in the TITLE and in the URL. There's more to it than just writing, because if it's a competitive niche you'd have to know where in the code and filenames and meta tags to insert key terms too. If it's not a competitive niche market, then you may get away with just writing and not any tricky code stuff.

    @ATH I see you are using WordPress and have Yoast SEO Plugin installed. Great beginning! Start blogging! Write a Post at least once a week. Log into your dashboard, hover Posts, click Add New, then just fill in the form. The TITLE you provide at the top, becomes the URL of the Post. That is way important and should contain key words that are targeted within the Post. Watch your grading in the Yoast part of the Add New Post. Go for the green light on your target phrase! Provide good, helpful, honest, informative content about what you do and related things. Provide updates on jobs you've done with photos.

    Want to know more? Keep asking or Private Message me!
     
    ATH likes this.
  9. Druidess

    Druidess ArboristSite Lurker

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    @HLSupply , you make some good points (I said the same thing in my earlier post, don't go overboard on the keywords in the content of your website). As a former librarian and someone who also worked at a company that did database search and retrieval, I have observed that many people who are not trained in searching online will go to the general concept first and then refine. Lots of folks HATE typing much! So the "long tail" HL refers to is that phrases are more refined than broad single word concepts. Google usually defaults geographically to where it detects someone is via their computer settings so having a very long phrase like "tree removal company in Kokomo" is probably too much compared with "tree removal" and having your location in Kokomo appear on the site. Again, the keyword planner Google offers should help show how much traffic and proposed bid for ads you would get per phrase.

    A big part of Google's search ties in with having your presence appear in other ways such as social media, reviewing sites like Angie's List, etc... Other sites that sort of validate you as being an expert help. Blogging is a good way to keep the content of your site fresh (makes the search engines indexing 'robots' that look for stuff to index want to keep coming back to your site and note that it is active and all that). You could call it something else, like "Tree Tip of the Day", "Wood Wisdom"--it doesn't have to be called "Blog". Might make people look at it more likely.

    Websites that have an inherent data structure under the hood, like Wordpress and Weebly, are going to be better at search and retrieval than Wix and some other platforms. Wordpress allows you to write several blog entries at one time and then schedule them to publish themselves on the date you have indicated they should go live. Here is a blog post I wrote based on an article I found: http://www.yourvirtualsherpa.com/ab...s-site-heres-what-you-need-to-know-about-seo/

    I notice @ATH that you're in Findlay, Ohio! My late aunt was born there--Saunders on her father's side and Bair on her mother's side. Wow, small world!
     
  10. nywalleye

    nywalleye ArboristSite Member

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    As I heard YP Advertising programs working well on local businesses. But I am not sure.
     
  11. HLSupply

    HLSupply Outdoor Power Equipment Parts

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    We are giving much better ideas, @nywalleye. You can read previous ideas to gather some for yourself, if you want!
     
  12. RyanM

    RyanM New Member

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    What they don't tell you is that it takes more than just having a website and sticking some keywords on it to make it rank on the first page of google. In big cities like Atlanta, there are 50+ tree services with websites, many with just OK sites competing for 10 slots on the first page, a few of which are filled by big sites such as Yelp.

    The tree company's that are on the first page aren't there by luck. They see the long term value in having a top 3 listing on google for top keywords. And in most cases, they've hire someone to do exactly that.

    While many are sold on the benefits of a YP website based on looks, the true value of any website/marketing/seo service is not only what they do on-site but off-site as well, most importantly link building. And they just simply aren't going to do this for you.

    Tip: It is very easy to over optimize your website. For example, if your website is treeserviceatlanta.com and you've got that exact keyword "Tree Service Atlanta" plastered all over your site (more than once is too many) then its doing more harm than good. Google is not dumb and they use an algorithm to punish websites they feel are trying to game/manipulate the search results which in this case would be over-optimization via keyword stuffing + EMD (exact match keyword domain).
     
  13. Tess Davis

    Tess Davis New Member

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    I agree with Ryan, - SEO is very competitive, especially if you live in a larger city. I work for a company that does SEO full-time, and it is challenging. Google is constantly changing their algorithm, so it is difficult to keep up. For us, we don't charge any SEO fees, but rather only charge after a valid lead has been delivered. We went with that model because it was so challenging charging a monthly fee for SEO. Clients always felt like they were just paying for nothing, or for the promise of future rankings. It took pressure off everyone, both clients and us, once we went to a pay only for results model.
     
  14. treeremovalalbany

    treeremovalalbany ArboristSite Lurker

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    I would agree that $700 is ridiculous if you get nothing in return. However, I pay my SEO guy $1,500 a month and he has delivered on average $16,000 in business a month. I would say he's more than worth what I paid. I've tried YP, Dext, and a ton of other services, but they never gave me results. My new guy actually cold called me and I thought what the heck, we'll see what he has to say. I'm glad I listened. He redid my website and turned it mobile-friendly, and now I no longer spend a dime on Google Ads because he got me to the top spot in organic search for my area, Albany, NY. I had a website for 6 years and it was on page 4. He got me to page 1 and the difference in volume is crazy. Albany has a population of 90k and has other cities close by that are 30-60k in size.
     
  15. domonick

    domonick ArboristSite Lurker

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    Wow i know this post is 2 years old i cant believe that YP was charging that much back then. I do my own SEO and site building if anyone needs any help contact me if you would like. Back link building is essential but so are keywords. The more you love your website the better google will like it as well.
    This is my Tree service.
     
  16. Notestinestreeservice

    Notestinestreeservice New Member

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    I used YP for a year and didn't get anywhere. I have great luck with HomeAdvisor and Google Adwords. I also started working with a local guy for SEO stuff on my tree service website. We've only been at it a few months and normally the first lead or two in a month the service pays for itself.
     
  17. domonick

    domonick ArboristSite Lurker

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  18. M.D. Vaden

    M.D. Vaden vadenphotography.com

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    There certainly would be less expensive and equal or better.

    But I'm taking a whole new view on websites and SEO these days. Back in 2006, I did SEO myself and had my site on the first page for Portland, and then Medford when we moved there the first time for a while.

    But since then, the market became saturated. At first, there were fewer sites.

    So look at it this way to put it in a nutshell. If there are now 20 to 80 companies, or more, doing what we do in an area and all have websites, what happens if all of them hire GOOD knowledgable SEO outfits? Suppose all those SEO gurus use the same brilliant methods for all 80 websites? Who will be on the first page? And more important, the first 5 slots? Who will stay consistent? Who can promise Google won't change something that knocks them off a page or two each week?

    In a nutshell, everybody can't be on top. And at the moment, the number of sites is growing.

    So my approach, and what I'm suggesting, is to maintain a good website that is readable with good content for REFERENCE and contact. Then taking that $700 a month ... or whatever ... and putting it into good "old school" advertising too. Social media can work, but it's not that great for sure.

    When website started to rise, everybody started leaving old school advertising like it would go by the wayside, and FAILED to realize that the internet's first page would run out steam to handle the flow in the same way people stampeded for gold rushes, when the mines only had a limited suppply.
     
  19. Druidess

    Druidess ArboristSite Lurker

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    Being on the first page is only a start, and you're right, you have to have a site that engages people and gets freshened up on a regular schedule (blogging is still key here). Getting reviews is important so what you can do to have people rate your service where that rating is then linked back to your website it also important.

    If you look at your online marketing like a tree, you have to accept that it needs on-going care; so many people who aren't versed in tree biology and care like you are think once it has matured, it's fine, and your job is done and you can ignore it forever. Arborists and tree care specialists know differently. Trick is to set realistic goals of how much new business you need on an monthly basis and use the tools that get you there. Your best PR is also the quality of service and how people feel about working with you when they hire you. The biggest complaint I hear from home owners is when a particular company doesn't respond to messages. Even just telling someone you have to get back to them in a day or two (and then do it) is better than silence.

    Carol
     

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