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Latest Posts

Walk Away from an SEO Firm That Isn’t Transparent

Written by Nick Stamoulis

A significant number of potential SEO clients that we speak with have worked with an SEO company in some capacity in the past. They are getting in touch with us because that previous partnership didn’t work out as planned. When we ask what went wrong we are shocked to hear the number of prospects ...

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Getting Your SEO Campaign Ready for 2014

Written by Nick Stamoulis

I’ve been in the SEO world for over 13 years at this point, and in my opinion 2013 was arguably the craziest year in SEO that I have ever seen. In addition to Penguin 2.0 and 2.1, which plenty of websites will be dealing with well into 2014, Google also updated the Webmaster Guidelines significant...

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Decide Who Takes Ownership of Your B2B Blog

Written by Nick Stamoulis

A B2B blog is an important marketing tool. B2B marketing success online largely depends on the amount of quality content that is being published on behalf of a business on a regular basis. Content is what showcases a business as a thought leader and what gives decision makers the information that th...

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A Theory on Google’s Not Provided

Written by Nick Stamoulis

According to (Not Provided) Count, “not provided” data in Google Analytics will hit 100% on December 16th, 2013. We’ve been watching not provided crawl from the originally reported and promised 10% to 40, 50, 60 and 70+% over the last few months. Recently, Google announced that they would be s...

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B2B Content Quality Shouldn’t Suffer to Meet Quotas

Written by Nick Stamoulis

B2B marketing, specifically online, requires ongoing publication of quality content. B2B decision makers are deciding what product or solution is best for their business and the result will impact the entire organization. It’s not a decision that is taken lightly, especially if the product or solu...

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Interview with Jessica Lee of bizbuzzcontent

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Recently I had the chance to interview Jessica Lee, the Founder and chief creative of bizbuzzcontent. Before launching bizbuzzcontent Jessica earned her SEO stripes at Bruce Clay Inc., where she was responsible for content strategy, development and marketing. She also contributed to the book “Sear...

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SEO Items to Understand Before Outsourcing SEO

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Since many businesses don’t have the budget to hire an in house SEO professional, outsourcing the work to an SEO firm is the next best option. However, in order to select the right SEO partner the business/website owner or the person or team that is responsible for hiring the SEO firm must have a ...

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Conducting a 10 Minute Link Audit

Written by Shawna Wright

Every few months you really should conduct a full and in-depth link audit to get a clear understanding of what kind of links you have created/earned. Hopefully you’re following a strictly white hat link building program but you can’t control who links to you (or how they link) and the last thing...

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Additional Metrics That Measure SEO Success

Written by Nick Stamoulis

The primary metric that we use to measure the success of an SEO campaign are the number of visitors delivered to a site through organic search over time. There won’t be a quick jump overnight at the onset of an SEO campaign but gradually that number should increase. Unfortunately, that increase is...

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What Kind Of Impact Has Your Blog Had?

Written by Shawna Wright

Just like SEO, business blogging is a long-term marketing campaign that requires consistency, dedication, and enough time to really work. Producing great content that informs, engages, and resonates with your audience day in and day out means really focusing on what you are trying to say and giving ...

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What White Hat Link Building Looks Like Today

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Due to the Google Penguin algorithm update and all of the subsequent updates to the update, website owners have become fearful of link building. While understandable, what website owners need to comprehend is that links still play an important role in how a website is viewed by the search engines. Y...

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Can You Recognize SEO Success When You See It?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

A few months ago I got an email from one of our full-service SEO clients asking me if I had any suggestions on how they could ramp up their SEO efforts. He was looking in Moz at their site’s domain rank compared to some of their competitors and felt the gap wasn’t closing fast enough. So I did a...

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Realistic B2B SEO Goals

Written by Nick Stamoulis

It’s necessary to take a strategic approach to B2B SEO. In the campaign planning process a business needs to determine what the goals of the campaign will be to measure the success of the campaign as it moves along. The important thing to remember when setting B2B SEO goals is that they need to be...

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Timing Can Make or Break Your Social Media Marketing

Written by Shawna Wright

During the last SuperBowl Oreo spent $4 million on a 30 second commercial. Do you remember it? Maybe not but I bet you heard about their “dunk in the dark” tweet that went out during the 34 minute blackout. That simple image and social update garnered 10,000 retweets in an hour and probably hund...

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A B2B Social Media Connection Is Far From a Sale

Written by Nick Stamoulis

B2Bs have always had a much trickier relationship with social media than B2Cs have. B2Cs typically have a much larger target audience than B2Bs, which tend to operate on a niche scale. The broad target audience is much better suited for the major social media outlets, which also appeal to the masses...

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Search Volume Running Low? Tap Into New Avenues

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Depending on what industry you work in, your priority keywords could have a very large search volume (10s of thousands of searches a month), or a relatively small search volume (maybe only a few hundred). If your website is sitting fairly comfortably towards the top of page 1 in the SERPs how much r...

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Focus on One Niche to Succeed with SEO

Written by Nick Stamoulis

There are many factors that contribute towards SEO success. You need to have a quality site with great content that’s going to generate inbound links, the site needs to become trusted, the right keywords need to be used etc. There’s one more thing that isn’t talked about as much, but from year...

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Bigger Isn’t Always Better When it Comes to SEO

Written by Shawna Wright

Many small business owners feel like if only they had a bigger budget and a bigger team they could really make huge strides with their SEO campaigns. But thousands of businesses are one-man-shows or two-man teams at best, and their SEO “budget” is really whatever funds they can pull together to ...

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Stop Asking About Your Rank Already

Written by Nick Stamoulis

We are always upfront with prospective SEO clients regarding how we measure the success of an SEO campaign. We explain that SEO is a long term process and that it will take time to start seeing an ROI, especially in a competitive niche. We measure the success of an SEO campaign by looking at many fa...

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Great Referral Links Don’t Fall Out of the Sky

Written by Nick Stamoulis

I’ve seen it happen plenty of times on the Brick Marketing website—one lowly link on a popular industry site or blog can drive hundreds of visitors in a few short hours…and deliver a steady trickle of traffic for months to come. The exact thing happened when we did an interview with link build...

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What You Offer Dictates Keywords

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Even though it’s important to take a natural approach to SEO today, keywords still play an important role in generating visitors from the search engines. It’s not about stuffing keywords into your content- that will get your site flagged as spam. But the keywords that you want your content to ap...

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SEO Won’t Work Unless Your Product is Consistent

Written by Nick Stamoulis

When first speaking with a potential SEO client to get a sense of the history of their business and their business website there are certain things that stand out that tell us either 1. This website and company will be great to work with and we will be able to get them SEO results or 2. There are re...

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A Theory On Penguin and Manual Action Penalties

Written by Nick Stamoulis

In August Google announced they would be notifying websites affected by manual webspam actions in their Webmaster Tools account. Sites could be flagged for a number of reasons, including unnatural links, which could be mistaken for a Penguin penalty if site owners didn’t double check. Penguin is a...

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Merging Businesses? Think Before Merging Websites

Written by Nick Stamoulis

While some small business owners may prefer to remain a “small business”, for most business owners the goal is to grow the business over time. There are many ways to grow a business and one of them is the opportunity to merge with another business. Mergers often make sense from a business perspe...

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How to Make Your Blog Work for SEO

Written by Nick Stamoulis

One of the most important components of a search engine optimization campaign is content since it’s what can be optimized using keywords and is what generates natural links. That’s why a blog should be incorporated onto your website. However, just adding a blog to the site isn’t going to magic...

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Filling in the Content Void

Written by Nick Stamoulis

I came across this great post by Julie Joyce on Search Engine Land about using the YouTube keyword tool as a way to find link building opportunities. As Julie says; Never mind the awesome fact that you can get keywords and easily import them into Google AdWords for your PPC campaigns. What’s re...

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Does Your Web Developer Understand SEO?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

As SEO professionals we can’t help but cringe a little bit when one of our clients mentions that they want to redesign their site. If the website is generating a significant amount of traffic from the search engines and other sources, and those visitors are converting we would prefer that a client...

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Rank May Matter, But Don’t Let It Blind You to Reality

Written by Shawna Wright

There is no denying that websites that rank towards the top of page one for a particular keyword are going to drive more traffic to their website for that keyword than a site that is on the top of page two. And while it’s important to monitor your rankings as part of the bigger scheme of things (a...

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How to Earn a Guest Author Opportunity

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Online marketing success depends on many factors, but if we had to pick just one- we’d say that it’s determined by content. The businesses that are creating quality content on a consistent basis are able to improve their presence in the search engines and generate traffic from links to the conte...

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Be Good to Your Social Influencers

Written by Nick Stamoulis

There is no denying that social media marketing has become a critical component of your online marketing success. A strong social presence helps get your content in front of a wider audience, which in turn can create more natural links. A strong social presence also lends credibility and authority t...

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Think Like a PR Pro to Execute SEO

Written by Nick Stamoulis

The shifts that have occurred in the SEO industry also mean that SEO professionals need to have a shift in their mindset too. SEO is no longer simply about adding some keywords to your existing content and looking for any opportunity to get a link. It needs to be much more strategic than that. In...

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The Penguin 2.1 Punch

Written by Shawna Wright

We started working with a new client back in May/June 2013, right after Penguin 2.0 was pushed live. This client came to us knowing their website has been negatively affected by Penguin 2.0. A little digging through their link portfolio and we found that an easy 75+% of their inbound links were from...

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Consider the B2B Sales Cycle When Measuring SEO Success

Written by Nick Stamoulis

During initial conversations with potential new SEO clients we always try our best to convey that an SEO strategy is built for the long term. A client might not see much movement within the first few months, or even within the first year if it’s a competitive niche. New clients often claim that ...

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Interview with Jeffrey Rohrs of ExactTarget

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Recently I had the chance to interview Jeffrey Rohrs, VP of ExactTarget’s Marketing Insights Team. His first book, AUDIENCE: Marketing In the Age of Subscribers, Fans & Followers, will be published by Wiley this December (2013). He also co-created and produces the award-winning SUBSCRIBERS, FA...

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Visitors Should Come From Many Traffic Sources

Written by Nick Stamoulis

As an SEO company we are obviously going to tout the importance of SEO. When target audience members are looking for a product or a service that you sell, there’s a good chance that they will turn to the search engines. If your SEO campaign is working and you have content that matches their search...

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Social Signals and Their Impact on Link Building

Written by Shawna Wright

There is no denying that traditional link building is getting harder and harder. Earning “natural” or “editorial” links relies heavily on your content marketing and content promotion efforts. But site owners and bloggers may be more likely to link to established industry sites and authority ...

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How to Measure SEO Campaign Success with Analytics

Written by Nick Stamoulis

SEO is an online marketing function that is built for the long term. If you start SEO one month, there’s a very small chance that you are going to see much improvement the next month. However, as the SEO campaign moves along and you are producing SEO content and generating quality inbound links ...

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Can You Ever Have Too Much Website Security?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

A few weeks ago I was poking around in a client’s Google Analytics account, just to see how things were progressing when I noticed a distributing drop in organic traffic. I quickly logged into their Google Webmaster Tools account to see if there were any messages and sure enough, there was an aler...

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Blog Posts Should Be Lead Generation Tools

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Blog posts serve many purposes for a business or organization. They provide current and prospective clients or customers with information that can assist with their decision making. It’s an avenue to share some brand personality and showcase specific employees within the organization, allowing tar...

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Why Content Matters for the B2B Sales Cycle

Written by Shawna Wright

According to The Corporate Executive Board, 60% of the sales cycle is over before you speak with a prospect. This means that long before you ever know that potential customer exists, before they download a white paper, register for a webinar or signup for a demo, they are well aware of your company ...

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5 Things the Best SEO Clients Understand

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Just like there are good and bad SEO firms, there are also good and bad SEO clients. When a prospective client comes running to us complaining about their current or former SEO firm, we always make sure to ask the right questions to determine whether it actually was the SEO firm’s fault that the ...

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Don’t Let the Approval Process Hinder SEO Success

Written by Nick Stamoulis

One of the most important things that a website owner needs to understand about SEO is that it is a long term process. Unlike other marketing activities in which there might be an immediate return, like direct mail or a short term promotion, it takes time to see SEO results. This is mostly due to th...

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Why Blogging Matters for SEO

Written by Nick Stamoulis

When considering whether a new potential SEO client is a good fit there are a number of things that we take a look at. When reviewing the site one of the first things that we do is check the navigation to see if the site has a blog. If the site already has an active blog up and running, that’s a...

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Additional Ways to Be Social Online

Written by Nick Stamoulis

When you think of the word “social” in an online context, you probably associate that word with the big social networks that exist- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, etc. So when your marketing team suggests that your business or brand become more social, you automatically think ...

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Making People Want to Link to Your Content

Written by Shawna Wright

With Google’s changes to the Webmaster Guidelines regarding link schemes, creating informative, engaging, and useful content that people want to share and link to is more important than ever. If you look at Google’s announcements over the last few weeks it seems like pretty much any content you ...

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Content Marketing is a Two Step Process

Written by Nick Stamoulis

If you’re talking about SEO today, content marketing needs to be a part of the conversation. An SEO campaign is severely limited without a steady stream of content that can be published on the web on a regular basis. Content that is written for target audience members (first priority) AND the sear...

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Time to Throw Your SEO Firm Under the Bus

Written by Nick Stamoulis

In the last few months I have started working with two different companies in two very different fields that were negatively impacted by the work done by their previous SEO firm. The first company was hit when Penguin 2.0 came down the pipeline in May 2013 and lost about ½ of their organic traffic ...

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Business Changes That Your SEO Firm Needs to Know About

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Many companies choose to outsource SEO work because they don’t have the resources to handle all of the work that needs to be done in house. However, it’s imperative that an SEO firm still be viewed as a part of the team. A successful SEO firm/SEO client relationship is like a partnership and o...

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Can Social Media Marketing Really Generate Revenue?

Written by Shawna Wright

There is no denying that being active on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and other niche networks has tons of benefits. Not only does social media marketing help connect you with your existing customer base, it can also be used to introduce your brand to new potential cust...

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SEO is Earned Media

Written by Nick Stamoulis

When you think of “media” you tend to think about TV, radio, and newspapers (do people still read those?). However, the media really refers to any outlet where you can get attention by the masses and the Internet is one of those outlets. There are two types of media: paid and earned. Paid media ...

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Interview with Lisa Raehsler of Big Click Co.

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Recently I had the chance to interview Lisa Raehsler, the founder and principal strategist at Big Click Co. , an online advertising company and Google AdWords Certified Partner. In addition to agency work, she has led successful online marketing programs at Thomson Reuters in search marketing, merch...

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Short or Long Form Content for SEO?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

One of the things that we find ourselves saying to clients over and over is that they need to be creating a steady stream of content on an ongoing basis if they want to see their SEO efforts succeed. Optimizing a site and building some great inbound links might result in a small improvement over tim...

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The New Rules of Link Building

Written by Nick Stamoulis

As the battle between Google and the spammers rages on, the range of acceptable, white hat link building activities is getting smaller and smaller. It’s not that link building is dead or pointless, but rather that many of the old ways no longer work. That’s one of the things I love most about SE...

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When Will SEO Equal Sales?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

The primary purpose of any marketing campaign is to improve awareness of a company, product, or service, in order to generate more sales. There are many different types of marketing tactics that can be implemented. Some marketing tactics work to generate business in the short term, like advertisemen...

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The Organic Power of One Blog Post

Written by Shawna Wright

Back in July when I was pulling organic traffic reports for one of our full-service SEO clients I noticed there was a huge upswing in search, social, and referral traffic. Their site had seen some good growth in the previous months but nothing quite as drastic as this! From June to July organic traf...

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The Wrong Reasons to Redesign Your Website

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Website owners are faced with many decisions as their website grows and their company and or industry undergoes changes both online and offline. One of the most important decisions to make is whether or not it is time for a website redesign. It’s important that your website looks current and is ...

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What Kind of Active Link Building Is Left?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

With the changes to the Google Webmaster Guidelines regarding links in press releases and guest blog posts, the number of active link building opportunities available is shrinking. And while great content can earn links naturally overtime most sites can’t afford to wait the year+ it takes to build...

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Trade Shows As a Source of B2B SEO Content

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Perhaps the most difficult part of delivering B2B SEO content on a regular basis isn’t the actual writing itself, it’s mostly deciding what to write about. B2B SEO clients often over think the content marketing component of SEO. What it really comes down to is simply creating content that your...

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3 Ways to Find Your Latest Inbound Links

Written by Shawna Wright

Google has made it very clear that sites should focus more on “earning” natural links through great content marketing and an active social media presence. However, you can’t control who links to you and sometimes those earned inbound links are ones you wish weren’t pointing towards your webs...

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Interview with Christian Arno of Lingo24

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Recently I had the chance to interview Christian Arno, the founder of translation services provider Lingo24. Christian started Lingo24 when he was just 22 in 2001. He won the Shell LiveWIRE ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ award in 2003. In  2009 he as a finalist in the ‘Entrepreneur of the Y...

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Penguin 5.0, aka 2.1, Is Live

Written by Shawna Wright

On Friday, October 4th Matt Cutts tweeted that Penguin 2.1 launched, affecting about 1% of search queries. For the record, some SEOs are referring to Penguin 2.1 as Penguin 5.0 so know that they are talking about the same update. Why the naming confusion? As Danny Sullivan over at Search Engine Land...

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3 Reasons Your Organic Growth Has Flat Lined

Written by Shawna Wright

Obviously every site owner, and their SEO partners, would like to see a steadily upward increase in organic traffic once they get their SEO campaign underway. While you need to give things a few months to take hold and build momentum (remember, just because you make changes to your site that doesn...

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What You Must Have Before Pitching Guest Content

Written by Nick Stamoulis

An essential component of an SEO link building strategy today is content. Websites that are worth getting links from aren’t just going to link over to your site for no good reason. You’ll have to give something to get something (in this case, a link) in return. In many cases, specifically in ...

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Keeping Your Social Profiles Under Control

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Facebook, Twitter, Vine, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon…and those are only some of the biggest social networking sites out there! If you’re like many of us, chances are you’ve got a couple dozen social profiles floating around, spread across a dozen more social sites. May...

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The White Hat Approach to Targeting Multiple Cities

Written by Nick Stamoulis

As a local business, you are targeting potential customers in a specific area - but that might include cities and towns outside of the city in which you are physically located. So, how does this work from an SEO perspective? Even if you are located in City A, you might be very close to city B, so ...

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Are You Dealing with a Partial Manual Action?

Written by Shawna Wright

In early August, Google announced that they would be sending messages to site owners about manual actions being taken on the site. The messages will let site owner know if they have been affected by site-wide manual actions or just partial actions. In his example below, Matt Cutts shows how a partia...

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3 Types of Posts to Share to Keep Your Blog Active

Written by Nick Stamoulis

There are numerous benefits to operating a business blog. It’s an avenue to share your expertise with target audience members and be viewed as a trusted source of information. It helps SEO efforts by adding an additional page of content to the site each time a blog post is published that can be c...

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The New Hummingbird Search Algorithm from Google

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Google announced their new search algorithm at the end of September, although they have reportedly been running the new algorithm for a month or so already. The new algorithm is called “hummingbird” and was so named because it was designed to be “precise and fast.” Danny Sullivan at Search E...

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