Doing business online is a virtual battlefield with businesses and individuals all fighting for the top spots amount the search engines like Google, Yahoo, and MSN. Online reputation management is an important part of staying on top of the internet marketing game.

There is a price to pay for making your way to the top and you can do it with either time or money. While bigger corporations and online business have the money to hire agencies to push their business to the top of the totem pole, smaller businesses and individuals often rely on trial and error or hiring fly by night companies who promise them the world and deliver nothing.

If you thought getting to the top of the search engines cost a lot of money, think again. In fact, if you have the patience you can get to the top of the search engines without depleting your bank account. The first step is online reputation management and that starts with keeping your word, providing quality products or services, and go above and beyond to satisfy your customers. Word of mouth holds more weight than any amount of money you could spend and it lasts longer too.

One happy customer will tell their friends, they will let others know, and so on. Before long, your customer base will grow, you name will become known in your niche, and customers will come back to you because they trust in you.

With our economy in such a bad state, businesses don’t have extra money use for advertising, so the smart marketers are thinking of more innovative ways to build an online reputation and increase their customer base. It is possible to create a campaign and run it yourself even on a tight budget. Creative marketing can consist of joining forums and networking groups, social bookmarking, and even blogging.

Other creative ways to build an online presence and become well known in your niche is through networking both online and offline. Article marketing, video marketing, Question and Answer sites such as Yahoo Answers, are all great places to start.

Online reputation management is simply keeping a handle on what you do and never leaving a customer dissatisfied. Get feedback from your customers, create polls or mini-surveys and ask what you can do better. The best way to keep a positive online reputation is to not develop a bad reputation.

About the Author:

Search engine marketing is the most powerful way to drive traffic on the web. With Content Syndication you can control your internet brand. For more info on reputation management go to http://www.directhorizon.com

Maryland Internet Marketing Consultant David Bruce Jr of Frederick Web Promotions

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Why a Maryland Business website needs to improve it’s link popularity:

What is it and why you’d better start thinking in these terms.

There can be only one number one. Google has to pick one, just one… everyone else is second place or worse.

How does Google Decide who gets to be #1?

What if it comes down to Coke or Pepsi?
lets say both sites are equal in every metric you can think of… There still has to be one number one…

If Coke has 110,000 other sites linking to it, and Pepsi has 180,000 other sites linking to it… guess who wins?

It’s time to improve you link popularity!
Why bother with link building?

Link popularity and link quality are very important because every major search engine now considers them as a part of their ranking algorithms. If you don’t have links, you won’t rank well for competitive keywords.
If your page includes all the important on-the-page criteria and scores well with Page Primer, it’s time to focus on your links. Good inbound links can move your page up the ranking ladder and act as new entry points to your site. But how does your site get those coveted inbound links we hear so much about?

First off, let’s make sure we understand the basics. Link popularity is the measure of inbound links to your web site. Link analysis evaluates which sites are linking to you and the link text itself.
Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to improve your link quality and popularity, which will give you a boost in the rankings. Here are some guidelines to help you set up your own linking campaign:

1. Prepare your site first
Before you start your link building campaign, take time to get your site in shape. Make sure your site looks professional, has good content and is easy to navigate. Validate your HTML code and check your links with a tool like HTML Toolbox. If a potential linker goes to your site and finds broken pages, they are not going to want to link to you.
In addition, directories have gone on record saying they may exclude sites with broken links and page errors. Directories want only professional looking sites in their databases, so do your homework on your site before you start promoting it and your linking campaign will be more effective.

2. Budget time for link building
Don’t expect to grow your link popularity overnight. Budget time every week to work on link building. If you force yourself to spend a couple hours a week on link building, it will become part of your routine. Pick one day a week and set aside time as your “link building time.” If you don’t make it a priority, it won’t get done.
Link building is an incremental activity. Over time these one or two new links start adding up until they are hundreds or even thousands of links.

3. Establish realistic link goals
Don’t expect to see instant results. Link building is difficult, frustrating and time intensive. Convincing another web site to link to you can be exasperating. If you get one good quality link a month you’re doing better than the majority of sites out there.
Patience and creativity are key to link building. Track your progress so you know who you’ve asked already. It could be embarrassing to ask a site for a link if they’ve already given you one.
If a company initially declines your link request, wait a while and then ask again. Their company focus may change over time. A “no” today may change into a “yes” 6 – 9 months later.

4. Develop internal management support
If you’re link building in-house, build support from your company’s internal management for your link building. This usually means educating management about the benefits of link building.
Link popularity is unique to the search engine industry – it’s not taught in graduate schools (not yet, anyway). Sit down with your management and explain the concept behind link building – don’t assume they understand it or have even heard of the term. In fact, most won’t have a clue what you’re talking about.
Explain link building in terms they will understand and in ways that will get their attention, such as describing the relationship of link building and increased revenue. Talking about making more money usually gets management’s attention.
Why worry about management support? You will need it to provide the time and money you need to get into search engines or directories.

5. Link popularity is all about quality
Be selective about the sites from which you request links. Search engines use sophisticated rules when judging the importance of a link, and the popularity of the site linking to you is a key criteria. One link from CNet is worth far more than a link from a personal web site.
And don’t even think of using a link farm! Link farms are sites that exist solely to link to other web sites. Link farms are a blatant attempt to inflate your link popularity, and search engines take a dim view of them. Google in particular has been known to ban sites found using a link farm.
Try to identify non-competitive sites in the same field as your site. Links from sites that are related to your area carry more weight than sites from Aunt Sue’s favorite horse site. That doesn’t mean you should refuse a link from Aunt Sue, just be aware it won’t help you much in link quality terms. On the other hand, links from sites within your industry are strong endorsements for your site.

6. Develop a relationship with a site
Before you ask for the link, get to know the web site. Establish yourself as a real human first. That way, when you ask for a link, it’s harder for them to say no.
Impersonal broadcast emails asking for links are spam. Sure, it’s easier, but it will only result in making another company mad at you. Spam link requests do not work and waste everyone’s time. Don’t do it!

7. Provide the linking code
Make it easy for other sites to link to you. Send the prospective linker the exact HTML code you want in the link and suggest which page you want the link from. This ensures the right words are used in the link and reduces the burden in setting up the link. Everybody on the Internet is pressed for time and if you don’t make it “drop-in simple” by giving them the exact HTML, you’ve made their job too hard. Make it easy and your success rate will go up.

8. Get directory listings
Jumpstart your link campaign by getting directory links first. This is especially important if you have a new site or a site with no inbound links. A shortage of inbound links puts your site at a severe disadvantage because link analysis is an important part of every search engine’s ranking algorithm.
The way to overcome this disadvantage is to get a few quality links. A good way to start is to get listed in as many directories as you can. There are many directories out there, and the more you can get into the better.
A few to target include:
• Open Directory
• Yahoo
• LookSmart
• Zeal.com
• Joeant.com
• Business.com
Be aware that most of these directories require you to pay for a listing. It’s worth the expense.

9. Consider bartering for links
It’s a good idea to have something to offer in return for a link. Many sites won’t link to you unless you link back to them or otherwise make it worth their while. Create a Resources or Partner page that allows you to have a place from which you can easily link to them.
You might also offer to work a barter arrangement with them. If you have a popular site with their target market, they might consider free advertisements in exchange for a link. If the link is of great value to you, be prepared to give something back.

10. Link building alternatives
If time constraints keep you from link building, consider outsourcing your link popularity work. Link building is undoubtedly the most time consuming part of search engine optimization. You may find it is not cost effective to do it in house. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it, it just means you hire someone else to do it for you.
Many top SEO firms have turned to outsourcing this function. For example: Jill Whalen of highrankings.com uses Debra O’Neil-Mastaler’s link building firm.
Outsourcing to a reputable link building firm ensures good links and could be a more efficient model for you if you are already time limited.
One word of caution if you do chose to hire a company specializing in link building: make sure any firm you hire follows good link building practices. Ask them to describe the process they use to request links Make sure they follow a personalized approach, and don’t simply spam sites with requests for links.

If they refuse to discuss their link building methods you can assume they use impersonal widespread email drops or link farms – that’s spam. They may call it a fancy name, but if the process involves sending out large numbers of form emails, it’s still spam and will only set your campaign backwards and injure your company’s professional reputation. Go find a different company or develop your links in house.
Just do it!
Link popularity is important and the link building process needs to be given high priority. Link analysis is only going to get more important to search engines, not less. Search engines have found it highly resistant to manipulation and a legitimate way to measure the importance of a site. Since link building takes time, the sooner you start the better.

So think of link building as a long-term investment in your site. Put in a little time now to improve your linking today to insure a good search engine ranking in the future.

Frederick Web Promotions provided this article (I didn’t write it, I wish I did but the author said it so well I decided not to try to ‘top it’) for free to help you improve your company website’s local search engine ranking

If you find you WANT and NEED to improve your companies position in Google and don’t have the time, skills or expertise to do it your self.

Contact David Bruce Jr @
davidbrucejr@frederickwebpromotions.com
or call 240 397-9804for a free evaluation.

Fees for Search Engine Optimization start at $1500 annually for local Countywide top ten listings in local Google search results.

Fees for Search Engine Marketing involving an entire multi media online advertising campaign and Guaranteed top ten listing in State Wide Google search results start at $2500 annually. More competitive keyword combinations involve an additional monthly fee for each listing.

Fees for Nationwide top ten listings in Google for more competitive keyword combinations start at $12,000 down and a monthly fee for continued results.

Search Engine Optimization for MD small business

Search engine optimization is one of the most complex aspects of running a website. Designing and publishing is easy.

 

Getting people to visit…well that’s another story.

If your company doesn’t get more work, you might not keep your job. You need your company website to outrank your competitors. How about filling half the Google/ Yahoo/ MSN/ AOL page with YOUR website?

Most Web surfers find business and services by searching on one of the search engines, such as Yahoo and Google. You can maximize the sales that come through your Web site by optimizing how you are listed on these search engines

Visible proof of just that for Maryland small businesses

The ONLY MD Search Engine Optimization firm that Guarantees MULTIPLE rankings in top ten is Frederick Web Promotions

SEO= I get you to occupy the high ground (useful in any battlefield situation) what YOU do with the high ground is up to you. (if your sales copy sucks or your offer sucks I cant do anything about that, all I did was get you to out rank your competitor) You paid me for that and I gave it to you. the rest is up to you

Fee for Nationwide Ranking: $12,000, Fee for Statewide Ranking: $2500, Fee for ranking county wide: $1500

For Example if you work for a small business and want your companies website to rank at the top of Google and Yahoo, ON THE FRONT PAGE, meaning in the top ten search results given by the search engines,

… and you were wanting LOCAL Customers

People from YOUR county, people that lived close enough to hop in their car and buy your widget/order your service and put MONEY IN YOUR CASH REGISTER TODAY…

Multiple listings in the top ten search results

Free Blogspot blog to support your existing company website

Free Sales Copy writing

Free customer service included with your website

 

Best Return on Investment for advertising online you’re going to get ANYWHERE

and did I mention all of this is Guaranteed (or your money back?)

What is meant by the term:Social Network or Social Media?
Starting with MySpace’s popularity, social media is the type of online communication where people often shift fluidly and flexibly between the role of audience and author. In the not too distant past, only people with the webmastering skills of html and javascript could hand code a webpage, WEB.2.0 tools enable anyone without knowledge of coding, to post, comment on, share content and to
form communities around shared interests.

Off-Page Optimization is a fancy way of saying this:

“If you want a website to RANK, you’ve got to build hundreds of ‘Other Websites’ that link TO the website you want Ranked in the first place”

AKA Link Building to maximize the original website’s performance in the search engines for target keywords related to the page content.

A Blog – Social networks are the new mini-sites. It is good to spread your content around. Hording all of it on your blog is not a good move. Readers have to find your blog first and one way they do is by reading what you have written on a social network that already has traffic. Now if only I could practice more what I preach.

 

So if you are a blogger that wants to learn more about blogging or a blogger who wants to build your network and traffic to your site. Advertiser or marketer? You can continue to reach bloggers one at a time through contact forms or you can reach thousands at Bloghology. In these economic times, the two things corporations increased their budget on is creating content and social media marketing. A membership at Bloghology is free and is at the intersection of both.
Article by Stephen Miller

Maryland Internet Advertising: Search Engine Optimization for MD small business

Frederick Maryland Moving

Google Search Results Pages (or SERPs) have 10 listings per page

As you can see Frederick Web Promotions took 5 of the 10 available listings.

NO OTHER SEO firm is taking ‘half the page’.

NO OTHER SEO firm Guarantees MULTIPLE rankings IN THE TOP TEN or YOUR MONEY BACK!!!

Does YOUR SEO company Get YOU this kind of results?

Would you like YOUR COMPANIES website to PERFORM in Google like this?

Frederick Web Promotions secures MULTIPLE listings in all the major search engines for it’s clients.

Offering SEO or Search Engine Optimization services for under $600 per year. Best ROI (Return on Investment) of any advertising you could possibly secure for your small business.

Frederick Moving Companies 3_28_09

Move to Frederick
FOUR listings in the top ten Google Results, #1, #2, #9, #10 for keyword ‘move to frederick’
Don’t take my word for it, Google it yourself

Does YOUR SEO company Get YOU this kind of results?

Frederick Web Promotions secures MULTIPLE listings in all the major search engines for it’s clients.

Offering SEO or Search Engine Optimization services for under $600 per year. Best ROI (Return on Investment) of any advertising you could possibly secure for your small business.

Move to Frederick 3_28_09 on Google

Ok, go Google this phrase: Frederick Moving Companies

Frederick Maryland Moving

Google Search Results Pages (or SERPs) have 10 listings per page

As you can see Frederick Web Promotions took 5 of the 10 available listings.

NO OTHER SEO firm is taking ‘half the page’.

NO OTHER SEO firm Guarantees MULTIPLE rankings IN THE TOP TEN or YOUR MONEY BACK!!!

Does YOUR SEO company Get YOU this kind of results?

Would you like YOUR COMPANIES website to PERFORM in Google like this?

Frederick Web Promotions secures MULTIPLE listings in all the major search engines for it’s clients.

Offering SEO or Search Engine Optimization services for under $600 per year. Best ROI (Return on Investment) of any advertising you could possibly secure for your small business.

Frederick Moving Companies 3_28_09

If you can’t spit out ONE

230 character blurb about your Local Internet Advertising offer

and make that sexy, your site is doomed to oblivion.

I don’t care if a site is better than mine or prettier than mine, all the fancy flash graphics and esthetically pleasing layout is totally worthless if…

If you can’t describe in ONE sentence

what makes your offer above your competitors, the entire site is useless.

What good is a site, fancy or not if it’s found on page 13 in Google?

All of my sites, sparse as they may be… rank at the top of Google, often multiple listings out of the top ten.

Fancy pictures and nifty layout do NOT put money in your cash register… words do.

Sales Copy

And… being found within the top 10 of the serps (search engine results pages).

If you’re not in the top 10 (or at least the top 20) you’re invisible.

Credibility

If Google Thinks Enough of YOUR site to put it at the top…

Just the implication of being found in the top 10 search results means instant credibility:

  • Maryland Internet Advertising
    Google that
  • MSN Live type in Maryland Internet Advertising
  • Yahoo search for Maryland Internet Advertising
  • Aol Search for Maryland Internet Advertising
  • Multiple listings in each

    Notice my competitors all have a single listing…
    Do you want YOUR corporate site to perform in Google/Yahoo/MSN Live/Aol Search like that?

    call David Bruce at 240 397-9804 for a no obligation consultation
    Frederick Web Promotions (we work outside of Frederick btw)
    davidbrucejr@frederickwebpromotions.com