Google Search

Are you pushing or pulling your customers?

You may have heard of the terms push and pull marketing. If not, let me introduce you. Simply put, push marketing is sending your marketing efforts directly to the consumer. Another name for push marketing is outbound marketing and the idea is to send consumers your message and they respond if your offer meets their needs. As an example, think of a large billboard sign for Advil advertising it’s usefulness treating aches and pains. Unless you have pain, Advil probably won’t be that useful or necessary.

Other examples of push marketing include advertising such as online banners, television commercials and radio spots.

Pull marketing is also known as inbound marketing and uses a different strategy than push marketing. To create a “pull”, marketers use techniques that use brand awareness and work to generate leads. The idea here is to make it easier for consumers to find you when they need your services. A good example of pull marketing is search engine optimization and using hashtags and keywords to allow customers to easily find you when they’re searching for your type of product/service.

This simple diagram from digitize.com explains it clearly,

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Although both push and pull marketing strategies are effective when done properly, they each have their weaknesses.

Typically, push strategies require more money to build relationships with your product. And push strategies typically require more time and energy to do well. If you want customers to go looking for you, they need to know you exist (push marketing) and have to want the value of your product offering (pull marketing).

Why does this matter for restaurants? By using push strategies you’ll work to increase awareness about your business and attract attention. You’ll place yourself in your consumers mind and begin to build a relationship through association. You may remember my previous post and my search terms “best taco restaurant in Sacramento.” You can see how effective a billboard or signage that promotes your restaurant as the best taco in Sacramento would be.

A good pull strategy will work on that brand awareness to create engaging content that pulls in customers. If your website includes links to positive reviews of your tacos and enticing pictures, you’ll be able to position yourself as the best choice for tacos in the minds of consumers. Generally, pull strategies are more effective in creating long-lasting, beneficial relationships and brand loyalty because consumers are actively engaging with your brand. They’re drawn to you and put their own effort into engaging with you. This is incredibly valuable and can easily increase your RFM (recency, frequency, and monetary) scores with your patrons.

Thanks for reading this article and I hope you find my information useful. As usual, if you have any questions or comments please feel free to comment below.

Thanks for reading and be sure to follow me on Facebook and visit my website, robrosenblattconsulting.com to see what I can do for you.

~Rob

What happens when you “Just Google it?” Part 2

The following post is part 2 of 2 introducing the basics of how Google operates. Understanding these fundamentals is extremely important to knowing how and why Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is useful to businesses.

In part 1 I discussed more of the abstract theory and thought behind how search results are found for general questions. In part 2 I’ll discuss a little more about the mechanisms Google uses and how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can work wonders for your business. To be sure, the following is a very simplified explanation of Google’s search engine but I hope it’ll be useful to your business.

Googlebots aka Spiders

Google is constantly searching the web for new sites or updated pages to add to its index and it has developed a special program to aid in that; Googlebots (also known affectionately as spiders) are the tiny programs designed to crawl (basically a search) the internet. The information most likely to be gathered are things like keywords, tags and titles, so it’s important that you optimize your site to be found easier.

SEO Tip #1

By using meta-tags (an HTML tag containing keywords or phrases), keywords and proper formatting for your website, it becomes easier and more efficient for Google to filter your site into a list of possible search results. That means you need to make it easier to be found by using common words people often search for.

Penalties and Filters

After indexing information like keywords, tags and titles, Google then starts filtering out results. Penalties are things like known spam sites that have been reported and government requests to take down pirated work. Google removes those from your search results.

Next, filters are applied. These are things like your location, current trending topics, and your past search history results. Google places more importance on information that is popular (current news and search terms that have exploded in use), local to you (in your geographic area like country, state, city, neighbourhood, street) and you have a history with.

SEO Tip #2

Links to your website (Facebook page, Twitter account, Instagram, etc) not only increase the chances that you’ll be found by Googlebots quicker, but more links to your website increase the validity of your site. In other words, Google doesn’t think you’re a spam site because legitimate websites are linked to yours. That means your business needs to have a well-rounded and in-depth web presence.

Ad Time

Obviously Google is in it to make money, and they’re very successful at it. According to the website, The Motley Fool,

 In the first quarter of 2015 Google took in $17.3 billion in revenue, up 12%                                        year over year. Nearly all of it — $15.5 billion — came from advertising sales.

That means that the answer to your question comes with a healthy dose of ads. Now, to be fair, Google does use its search program to give ads that are directly related and correspond to your search terms. For example, our previous search in part 1 of this blog was “Where is the best taco restaurant in Sacramento”, and gave us this result. Notice what’s front and centre at the top of the search results.

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Results that show up because of a paid ad are referred to as not being “organic” in that they were purchased and pushed to the front and weren’t actually as a result of being the “best” answer to the search query. It’s generally considered better to be found organically although having a paid ad on Google does work and is effective in driving traffic to websites.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post and that you learned a little bit about how Google works. You can see just how important being optimized for search engines is.  According to a 2011 report from the Pew Research Centre, 55% of adults say they actively search out news and information about local restaurants, bars, and clubs and when they do 51% turn to the internet, including

  • search engines – 38% rely on them
  • specialty websites – 17% rely on them
  • social media – 3% rely on social networking sites

Thanks for reading and be sure to follow me on Facebook and visit my website to see what I can do for you.

~Rob

 

 

 

 

 

 

What happens when you “Just Google it”?

The following post is part 1 of 2 introducing the basics of how Google operates and understanding this is extremely important to knowing how and why Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is useful to businesses.

Google is everything and everywhere and is an indispensable part of the daily lives of billions of people around the world. And not too shockingly, most people have no idea exactly what happens when they type words in the search box and press enter.

Why is it important to know how Google works? Probably because we humans tend to be lazy and rely on others to do the work for us. If I want to know “Where is the best taco restaurant in Sacramento” all I have to do is type that exact phrase in Google and voila!

Screen Shot 2017-04-15 at 2.36.23 PM

After the paid advertisement, there’s a nice map and a list of tacos places in Sacramento. Now, if you owned a business selling tacos in Sacramento, wouldn’t you want to be on this list? That’s why knowing how Google works is so important for businesses.

How do we/you know they’re the best tho? Well, let’s pretend we’re looking for information to decide that. I assume that the “best places” are usually the most popular, the most talked about, the most shared and referenced. We might look for key words like “taco, best, Sacramento” and see how many of those words are grouped together. And in essence, that’s what Google does. Only the Google algorithm uses over 200 different criteria to decide what the answer to “Where is the best taco restaurant in Sacramento.”

Obviously, the process and algorithm Google uses to rank search results is complicated but I’ll try to simplify it to show the more important points. First, let’s do a little searching…on Google..for the answer to the question, “How does Google work”?

These are the rough steps google uses when analyzing a search query;

  1. Determine users needs such as location, country, and language
  2. Determine users intent and reason for the search including recent searches, past behaviour, popular search items,
  3. Rank search criteria such as the quantity, quality, reputation and relevancy
  4. Factor in penalties and filters such as online ads, untrustworthy sites, sites misusing or overusing keywords
  5. Display results 

There’s a great infographic on seobook that show’s a more in-depth breakdown of these steps.

Once you understand how Google works, it’s possible to optimize your website and increase your chances to be selected as the relevant answer to a search query. And by using simple search engine optimization (SEO) techniques and tips, I can help drive traffic to your website.

That’s the beauty of SEO.

~Rob

Follow my blog for part 2 when I’ll discuss ways that can increase your chances to be found first in a Google search query.