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eCommerce Tips: Avoiding Magento’s Duplicate Content Problem

August 15, 2012 - Posted by Rilee Chastain, 1 Comment

Utilize the Magento platform without producing duplicate content pages. With the overwhelming growth of digital media and social marketing occurring within the last decade, many large businesses and corporations have slowly began taking to the web more and more in order to complete a good amount of their corporate sales and research online, while also utilizing this beneficial medium as a way to connect with colleagues and other industry professionals digitally. However, it has only been within the past few years that both large and small businesses alike are truly starting to understand just how effectively they can compete online, especially for those who are looking to get their feet wet with online retailing. Whether you are a new company who is looking to start their very own retail business online, or you are a veteran business owner who is just now starting to explore the benefits of a great… read more

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How Nonprofits are Succeeding with Social Media

August 14, 2012 - Posted by Amanda Norris, 2 Comments

As social media networks began to shed their limited niche appeal and were embraced by the general public, many businesses began to take note and quickly followed suit, using the sites as an effective networking and marketing tool. But for-profit corporations and businesses aren’t the only ones who realized the marketing potential of social media. As the recently released “4th Annual Nonprofit Social Network Benchmark Report – 2012” from NTEN, Common Knowledge and Blackbaud shows, nonprofits have also found success using social media to promote awareness and raise funds for their causes. Below are some key findings from the report that show how nonprofits are using social media effectively. General Trends According to the report, 93% of nonprofits are currently using social media marketing on commercial social networks (as opposed to private, in-house social networks) as part of their strategy. This number is relatively stable, increasing only 1% over 2011…. read more

Shama Kabani, Idan Shanll

Why Review Sites Matter For Your Business

August 14, 2012 - Posted by Shama Kabani, No Comments

Transcription of “Why Review Sites Matter For Your Business”: Shama: I know you also stress a lot about review sites. What is it about review sites like Yelp and others that are important to search engine optimization? Idan: Users gather information on the Internet. If it’s from your Website, from a competitor, from Yelp, from another citation, like Google Plus or Google Places or even Bing. All these citations, people go on and they place their view. If you’re not there, your competitors are. Shama: What’s a citation? Idan: A citation is basically a website, a directory, that people have their place of business. Shama: Ok so your information is linked in it. It’s kind of like a yellow pages on the Web and you have so many directories. That’s a citation. Idan: Exactly and there are so many of them. Shama: I love SEO speak. Idan: There are so… read more

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Why Google Plus Matters For SEO

August 13, 2012 - Posted by Shama Kabani, No Comments

Transcription of “Why Google+ Matters For SEO”: Shama: So, Idan, let’s talk about your favorite recent social networking site, because I know you’ve been drilling all of us here at the Marketing Zen Group, and our clients should really amp up their efforts with the infamous Google+ because a lot of people still haven’t figured it out. So tell me, what, why all of this importance on Google+, and from an SEO perspective, why are you so gung-ho about it? Idan: Well, personalized search has been a long coming. We always knew that it’s going to happen. We just didn’t know when. Even before Google+, we saw Twitter had a partnership with Google and you saw a bunch of tweets for specific keyword. Shama: I like that, yeah. Idan: Yeah, so Google definitely wants to be in the arena of social. I mean, you can get a lot of valuable… read more

6 Apps That Can Help Small Businesses Compete Against the Big(ger) Guys

August 13, 2012 - Posted by Amanda Norris, 7 Comments

Guest post by Jim Belosic, CEO of ShortStack One of the most awesome things about being a small business owner today is the number of apps that are available to help make running a business so much easier than it was just a few years ago. It used to be really difficult for many small businesses to compete, especially in the online space. Back in the day, circa 2008 or so, if you wanted a cool website, you’d have to shell out thousands of dollars to hire a designer/programmer. An e-commerce site could cost six figures! Then you’d need a bookkeeper, a point-of-sale provider, an attorney, and the list goes on. Not any more. Today you can build a website for free using WordPress, you can get an LLC set up for a couple hundred bucks with LegalZoom and you can use QuickBooks for bookkeeping. If you have a good… read more

Automation, Keywords, and Rankings! Oh, my!

Automation, Keywords, and Rankings! Oh, my!

August 10, 2012 - Posted by Shama Kabani, No Comments

Transcription of “Automation, Keywords, and Rankings! Oh, My!”: Shama: One of the things I know is, there are a lot of companies out there and a lot of folks, I know you’re totally against this is, automated SEO. Idan: Right. Shama: Where there is a software, and there is a place and time where you can use software to assist with your efforts, but there’s things out there that people will say, it’s a software, you set it up and it will optimize the website for you. What are your thoughts on that? Is that legit? Idan: One of the things that Google absolutely told us every time is they’re not looking for something that another website can do. We don’t want the same thing on our search engine result page, with the same content, with the same title, with same METAS, same review. Shama: Duplicates are a big no-no… read more

What does it really take to rank well on Google?

What does it really take to rank well on Google today?

August 9, 2012 - Posted by Shama Kabani, 1 Comment

Transcription of “What does it really take to rank well on Google today?”: Shama: This stuff has been going on for a long time. People have been keyword stuffing, wrong link building techniques. A lot of the times sadly people don’t know any better. What’s changed now that Google is all of a sudden catching these things a lot better? Idan: Over the years a lot of people said, content is the king, content is the king, content is the king. Shama: Right. Idan: People said, all right, I’ll just create a bunch of content, stuff some keywords in there, if it’s a good content that people can actually read or not, it doesn’t really matter. Shama: There’s words. Idan: Yes, it’s a bunch of words cramped together, does it make sense or not, whatever, it really doesn’t matter. That’s not what Google wants. They start penalizing websites that threw… read more

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Facebook Insights You Can’t Afford to Ignore

August 9, 2012 - Posted by Rilee Chastain, No Comments

Facebook Insights can help you improve your social media marketing efforts. We all know how important Facebook business pages can be for connecting with consumers and establishing a relationship with the people who follow your brand. Through creative status updates, personal photos and informative links, Facebook can truly be the ultimate content-sharing platform for your business… if you know how to successfully measure all of the hard work you are putting in. Facebook Insights had always notorious for being a complete mess. Sure, there was a ton of valuable data hidden within graphs, charts and spread sheets, but it had always been a complicated maze of clicks and downloads trying to separate the helpful information from the useless data. Luckily, in early 2012, Facebook rolled out some new metrics that help to give businesses better insight into how to improve their results and how to create better experiences on their… read more

How to: Twitter Advertising

How To: Twitter Advertising for Business

August 8, 2012 - Posted by Shama Kabani, 1 Comment

“How To: Twitter Advertising for Business” video transcription: Hello this is Shama Kabani, CEO of the Marketing Zen Group, and I’d like to talk to you about Twitter Advertising. Twitter Advertising has evolved a lot in the last couple of years, short couple of years. I’d like to call this the third generation of Twitter advertising. The first phase was where Twitter allowed only companies with a certain budget to be able to advertise on their platform, and that was for companies with a minimum of a $5,000 ad budget, just for Twitter alone. Then Twitter opened it up for certain American Express Card holders and they got emails to be able to participate in the Twitter advertising program. Very recently, I received an invitation for my Twitter account @shama to use Twitter advertising and I’ve noticed that this is a trend, and more and more people are getting these… read more

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The Importance of Using “rel=author” For Your Web Content

August 8, 2012 - Posted by Rilee Chastain, No Comments

Google’s authorship program promotes enhanced search result listings. Over the last few years, Google has been taking a long, hard look at social media’s effect on personal and company branding, and have been working hard to add a more human element to search engine rankings and―the newest industry buzzword of the moment―author rankings. As Google slowly began implementing these changes into their search engine, they began to realize just how important social media is as an indicator towards evaluating the quality of a given website. To help reinforce the importance of credible authority and personal branding, Google introduced its authorship program into the world just a few years ago. This rel=author tag is used to rank web content that is written by real people, while also helping Google determine the authenticity of the content by verifying that it was written by someone who has credible expertise in the subject. Implementing… read more

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