Your Website Visitors Come First, Not Google

your-website-visitors-come-firstBack in April Google released an update to their search algorithm. Many called it Mobilegeddon.

It was billed as one of their biggest algorithm updates yet. But it was only going to impact the mobile search rankings.

You may have heard about this through your Google Webmaster Tools account which is now called Search Console. By the way, when will Google stick to a name? Google My Business was Google Places for Business and Google Local before that.

Anyways, Google has a mobile friendly tool which tests your site to see if it was just that. So they tested everyone’s site early in the year and if yours wasn’t mobile friendly, you recieved a warning message like this.

Surely you got that message and that you pay attention to your Webmaster Tools account. Even if you didn’t, you have at some point thought about converting your site to a responsive design/making it mobile friendly. And if you haven’t you need to right away. Not to appease Google and their algorithm, but to give your visitors a better user experience on your site.

Care More About Your Visitors

Considering it’s 2015 and so many people (insert stat here) are using their mobile devices, your site should be mobile friendly. And it should be because you want to give your visitors a great user experience and not because you want better Google search rankings.

Care more about your visitors.

It’s common in SEO for business owners to think more about optimizing their sites for Google rather than the searcher. They look too deep into keyword density and writing content that was created for a search engine crawler and not a human being.

The Google mobilegeddon update brought the same.

Many business owners were focusing more on appeasing Google. It shouldn’t have taken a push and perhaps a threat that your mobile search rankings would plummet if your site wasn’t mobile friendly. All it should have taken was business owners to realize everyone has a mobile phone and everyone is browsing the web on them.

If you don’t a mobile friendly site, people will find a competitors site that is. So the bottom line is out care your competition and provide the best mobile experiece for your visitors.

The Mobilegeddon Update Hasn’t Had An Impact

We didn’t write about the mobilegeddon update because we didn’t think it would have much impact on the mobile search rankings. And as of today, November 19th, they’re still websites that are not mobile friendly ranking higher than mobile friendly ones.

Here are the search results from my mobile device for “care homes Victoria BC”.



There are four search results in the top seven that aren’t mobile friendly. Here are three of those sites.

Non-Mobile-Friendly-Site Non-Mobile-Friendly-Website Non-Mobile-Friendly

If you ask me, these sites provide a terrible mobile experience and shouldn’t be ranked where they are. I’m still in my 30’s and am having a hard time reading those sites! Nevermind their market which is mostly children with parents who are 70+ and needing a care home.

So we’ve yet to see the impact and big changes to the mobile search rankings. But that shouldn’t stop you from having a mobile friendly site.

Care more for your visitors and provide them with a great mobile experience on your site.

A Tool to Critique Your Internet Marketing Efforts

Hubspot's Marketing Grader

Today’s post is going to be short and sweet. It’s my fifth post in a series of the ten best free Internet marketing tools you should be using.

This post will cover Hubspot’s Marketing Grader. It’s like Webmaster tools but it analyzes much more. It grades your social media, SEO, blogging, mobile and lead generation.

To have all those areas graded, simply head over to Hubspot Marketing Grader then enter your website and email. Give it a couple of seconds and you’ll see where you’re strong and weak. Then what to do about the weaknesses’.

Pretty simple and like I said, it’s a short post. But a useful one.

As a side note I want you to learn about how Hubspot markets.

They provide valuable content and resources. This tool is no different. It’s a great way to provide value in exchange for someone’s email address. Then they send you more great learning tools through their email marketing.

Think about what valuable content you can give away in exchange for someone’s email address.

The Low Hanging Fruit Of SEO

Low Hanging Fruit of SEO

On Tuesday I talked about a few different ways you can get more people to your website.

I was going to add another point to that post. Then I thought it would be better to create a new post altogether. It comes from a suggestion I made to a client which they gave me the go ahead on.

The amount of time required to this is very little. And the ROI potential could be huge. That’s because your competitors aren’t thinking about the other small keywords. You don’t have be a lemming and try to rank for the big keywords in your city.

Go after the low hanging fruit.

There’s more value there. Especially when it comes to local search engine optimization.

Out Care The Competition

Since taking over the online marketing for Victoria Transmission and Auto Care, I thought we could get more traffic to the site if we tried to rank for all our services.

Part of our mission is to build awareness around the fact that we’re not just a transmission shop. We offer lots of other auto care services in Victoria.

My goal is to spread the awareness of our other services with the website.

But I didn’t want to just rank the main page for all of our services though. That would mean trying to rank well over 50 keywords for one page.

It’s not good practice to try and rank a webpage for more than five keywords per page.

Because of this the main page targets only transmission related keywords. So most of the traffic arriving to the website before I started working with them was all transmission based keywords.

And that’s where I knew we could get more people to the site.

Most, if not all of your competitors are only looking at ranking their main page instead of their inner pages. This is shortsighted. Just like they’re trying to only rank for a few big keywords.

This is what Meaningful Marketing isn’t about. Why? Because it’s not looking at other ways to get more prospects and clients. This example is following the competition.

Doing this won’t get you ahead.

Out caring the competition and Meaningful Marketing is the opposite. In this case, care more about those people that are searching for specific products or services you offer.

They’re people out there looking for you. They’re searching for the products and services you offer. They don’t know about you yet. But they will if you follow my advice in this post and the rest of my posts.

There is also a huge benefit of having people land on webpages that actually talk about what they searched for. I’ll explain this benefit in a bit.

Branching Out

Back to my Vic Trans example. I knew we wouldn’t be successful if we tried to keyword stuff the main page with 50+ keywords.

With over 16 services, I thought it would be best to create separate pages for each service. And target those services in our keywords.

So the oil change service page targets three keywords dealing with oil change and Victoria. Since creating these pages back on April 25th, more people are landing on the site with specific searches. It’s not transmission based searches anymore.

This is why it’s important to get specific with your keyword research. Even though Google said there wasn’t enough people searching for these specific auto care services, I still thought people were.

And they are. These pages have brought 45 new visitors to the site within the last 30 days. These pages aren’t ranking within the top 5 for each keyword either. Which is great news. Once I do some backlinking for those pages, they’ll rank higher and we’ll get more people to the site.

All it takes is a couple of these people to book online and get their bodies into the shop. From there the staff rely on their excellent service to retain that customer for life.

The amount of time spent on this is very little. Yet it doesn’t take much to earn lifetime clients from it.

Now to that benefit I mentioned earlier.

You’ll increase your conversion rates from website visitor to client if the searcher lands directly on a webpage that talks about that exact service they just searched. It annoys people when they land on your main page and have to navigate your site looking for the product or service they just searched.

If your site isn’t easy to navigate, people will leave quickly.

Makes it easy for them to find the information they’re looking for. But don’t forget this important step.

The Call To Action

We’ve also included online booking forms below each service description page. After all, what good is to to have people on your website and not ask for their business or contact details so you can market to them.

Once again, make it easy for them to call you or book online.

By creating separate pages for each service, having people land on those pages and placing online booking forms on those pages, we’ve made it easy for people to find and book the service they’re after.

I sound like a broken record but make it easy for people to do business with you!

Staples easy button

Take a look at your website and search engine optimization efforts and ask yourself, are you making it really easy for people to:

  1. Do business with you
  2. Or leave your website and do business with the competition

Hopefully it’s #1 and you’re out caring the competition.

How to Increase Client Retention

Word Of Mouth

I like to think the majority of my blog posts are quite in depth.

Today’s post is going to be short and simple.

Last month I purchased a 2012 Nissan Altima and of course I needed new insurance.

Most dealerships have the insurance portion contracted out to a local company. The Nissan dealership and insurance company I dealt with were no different.

Except one major service. Instead of having someone sit around waiting for cars to sale, Maxxam Insurance takes their business mobile. So when a car is sold the salesman will call one of the many Maxxam representatives and they’ll drive to the dealership.

This obviously increases their sales efficiency. But they also increase their client retention and word of mouth. Let me explain how.

Telemarketing Can Work


Fast forward to last week. I get a call from one of the Maxxam reps telling me my insurance is up. This is a nice touch because a few years ago, I actually drove around without insurance for a week!

ICBC sends a reminder notice but why can’t the insurance company I dealt with make a phone call as well? Follow up phone calls can provide a unique personalized touch after the sale. But what about the case of an expiring service?

This is something we agreed would work better when dealing with the customer service over at Victoria Transmission and Auto Care. Before our follow up and reminders were sent out by a company using automate post cards and emails. In the end we felt the phone call had more impact and was far more personal.

The reminder about my expiring insurance is the vital piece of information they need to make the next step. And that’s to retain me as a client.

But it’s the simple way they make that happen which helps increase word of mouth and their sales. Since they have mobile agents all over, they drive anywhere to meet you.

They’ll even make any changes to your insurance before you get there. It’s a painless transaction. So instead of having to drive to an insurance agent and deal with lineups, Maxxam drives to you.

The Meaningful Marketing Way


Why do I know this increases word of mouth? Because I hardly ever talk about businesses but I’m going to blog and post on Facebook about my positive experience with Maxxam. It’s the Meaningful Marketing way.

They’ve out cared their competition by;

  1. Reminding me my insurance was up
  2. Working around my schedule and meeting me my place of work

Really simple!

So my question to you is, what can you be doing better from a customer service standpoint that makes people talk about your business in a positive light?

Here’s another brief example from Jam Cafe in Victoria. Often busy, Jam provides coffee to patrons waiting for tables outside. A great touch that many don’t forget and mention when they talk about their experience there.

My mother mentioned this right away when we got there. And in a conversation with a friend a couple weeks ago, she mentioned right away the fact that they served coffee to her and her friend waiting outside.

PS. Do you see how being remarkable is one of 10 ways you can create a backlink to your site? I just gave Maxxam Insurance, Victoria Transmission and Jam Cafe backlinks for simply being awesome and caring.

Give Birth To Your Brands Personality Today!

Give birth to your brand personality

Brands are supposed to be things, not people right?


You see, all brands were the creative idea of a person. A real human.

So what about your brand?

Does it have a heart? A voice? A personality?

Is it faceless?

Here’s where I am going with this.

Lee Clow who is regarded as one of the top Advertising Creative Directors ever explains brand personality for you:

“Brands are very much like people. Do you think that brand is interesting? Would you like to have them over for dinner? Are they always the same or are they sometimes funny and sometimes serious?”

These were his words in the great documentary Art & Copy‘.

To sum it up, your brand is person. And it should start communicating like one.

If it speaks directly to your target market, even better.

Read on for two great examples of brands doing just that and how you can give birth to your brand.

Before you do that, tweet this link out for me if agree with what Lee and I have said so far.

Would anyone invite your brand over for dinner? – Click to Tweet


Brash To The Bone

Old Spice for years had always been, well, old. I never used any Old Spice products growing up. Neither did my friends. Probably because we weren’t their target market.

They also were pretty boring. Same sailing ad after another.

That changed in 2010 with the famous “Your man can smell like me” campaign. In case you’ve been living in cave, here’s one of the commercials.

Even though the ads were geared towards women, I decided to try some Old Spice body wash last year. When I turned the bottle around, I burst out laughing in the shower! Here’s why…

Old Spice Brand Personality Marketing

If you can’t read the picture taken from my crappy iPhone 3, here’s what it says.

“Cleans hair, cleans body then wails on it’s pecks. Does it’s job and drives away in a sports car.”

Talk about speaking directly to their target market in a fun and entertaining way!

What’s also interesting is they treated the body wash it self like a human. Doing human things like wailing on pecks and driving a sports car. Awesome stuff Old Spice and a nice touch.

Axe has dominated the hygiene world amongst males ages 15-34 for some time now. They speak to their customers like a person which creates a connection.

Because of this they’ve had a stranglehold on male hygiene products. That was until Old Spice decided they needed to humanize the brand.

Since then Old Spice has done a bang up job by giving the brand a personality. All because they communicated like a real person.

Another great example of brand personality is Newcastle’s Facebook timeline image

Newcastle Brand Personality Marketing

I really like the stand they’ve taken.

One of the things written in the Meaningful Marketing Manifesto is that you should support good causes because you want to and not because you want more followers. They’ve stated that in it a bold way.

The brand alignment is also bang on with their ‘No Bollocks’ tagline.

Both examples are bold and in your face. Shocking for most because brands were things and not people before.

They’ve made me laugh and created an emotional connection. All because they communicated to me like a real human being.

Don’t be boring and Forgettable

How often does this happen to you.

You click on a website or read an advertisement and after 10 seconds of reading, you’re bored and on to the next thing?

I’m sure it’s happened often.

Why does this happen? They don’t have a brand voice. They’re blurting out their message like a robot speaking monotone. I suppose robots can only speak monotone but you get the point.

Those brands don’t understand that people are craving a connection. It’s like being able to talk to your favorite actor, actress, athlete or someone you admire. If they’re boring face to face, they might be your favorite anymore.

You want to see their human side. It’s the same with brands in this socially connected digital world.

Many brands are creating meaningful connections. Simply by having a voice and a personality.

Giving Birth To Your Brand

It’s really simple.

Start talking like a human being in every marketing and advertising piece the public sees!

Let your hair down. Stop standing up straight and being all proper. Being polite will not generate an emotional connection with people.

It’s like this. The last thing you want to do is fit in. By giving your brand a personality and a voice, you’ll be a breath of fresh air and stand out from the competition.

What do you think?

Is there anything holding you back from giving birth to your brand?

If you’re already doing so, tell me about it!

I’ll be discussing more about brand personality in future posts. If you’ve liked this post, subscribe to my updates so you can receive them straight to your inbox.