SEM or search engine marketing is a process that involves generating visitors from the search engines and converting them into customers. Most people now have some sort of SEM strategy but many people do this wrong. 80% of companies don’t use their online marketing budget effectively. This is primary due to corporate ladder levels and people not actually having any idea what their doing, but still 80%!!! That’s a big number.
1.) Write your site for yourself, not for search engines and not users – Credit this idea to Tom from HQ SEO He talks about not worrying about search engines and just writing how YOU want to write, not even how users might want to read it.
2.) Titles and H1s – These are the biggest on page factors and in my opinion still the biggest factors to ranking a website in Google and the SERPs.
3.) Links links links – This is the 2nd biggest ranking factor, and Google although they claim they are getting away from links, are infact still huge on them.
4.) Use paid advertising up front – Online paid advertising (PPC) is best utilised to TEST a website and to get initial customers in. If you spend £100 to get 1 client but they pay you £20 a month for at least 1 year, its worth it. Even if you lose in the first 6 months but have 20 clients after that, this across the life of your business will be positive.
5.) Sort Cash flow – Taking the above method as an example, cash flow is super important. Don’t try and “get by” taking a large salary early and buying nice things. Invest and reinvest until your business starts to explode. Taking hundreds early might result in you losing millions later on. Some of the richest people in the world were once working for free on there business, even when they were profitable!
6.) Invest early – Again similar to the above point, investing to grow your business is not throwing away money. Even if you invest in something that doesn’t work, you have now tested this and know it doesn’t work. You won’t make the same mistake again and although I’m not the person who says “a loss is a lesson learnt” a loss can help you to make better decisions in the future.
7.) Be nice – A wise man once told me that “the best referrals are from word of mouth” – This is 100% true. If you have someone or a group of people who are actively promoting your business, JUST BECAUSE your good at what you do and a nice person they enjoy working with, you simply have the best sales team in the world. A motto I created is that no one can create a billion dollar business without word of mouth. Every single billion dollar business has utilised word of mouth marketing without even knowing it.