The Apogee Results Blog

Is SEO a Good Investment for Your Small Business?

In our blog post, SEO Tips for Small Businesses, we addressed the importance of developing your SEO strategy for your small business and provided tips to help get you started. Today I want to discuss the next big question every small business owner asks: is SEO a good investment? The answer may seem readily apparent to most people, but when you run a small business you don’t often have the luxury of disposable income. We understand that every dollar counts and we want to make your dollar count, but there are a few things one must understand before investing in a SEO campaign to better your business. Let’s start with expectations. MANAGING EXPECTATIONS For business owners new to SEO, managing expectations can be difficult when one doesn’t even know what one wants. Some business owners may not know where to begin. Some feel that they need leads, not SEO, but this would be the equivalent of building a house without laying a foundation. Other owners may feel that investing in link building services is the way to go, but often find that the services they’ve used have only caused penalties and wasted money. Regardless of what an owner might know or not know, it is important to have realistic expectations of the SEO process. Achieving a coveted position in first page results in a search engine may take several months and there are no guarantees that your business will stay at the top. While many business owners will expect immediate and enduring SEO results, consumer trends fluctuate rapidly and repeatedly, which causes changes in keyword ranks. It comes with... read more

SEO Tips for Small Business

The term SEO, or “Search Engine Optimization,” is likely to produce a glazed-over look for a lot of people who just don’t know what you are talking about, but if you have a business or are thinking of developing a business, this is a term you need to know. SEO is a process which affects the visibility of a website or web page in a search engine’s search results. Whether through natural or organic (un-paid) search results, SEO is what gives rank to your website, and rank is everything when it comes to the success of your business. If your company has already established a web page or website, you might be asking, “Well, isn’t that enough?” The plain and simple answer is “no.” It is not enough for a web page or website to simply exist; it must be structured in certain ways in order for search engines to read them properly according to their algorithms, i.e. get the most information out of your website and into your consumers’ hands. How your web page or website is structured, by the addition of keywords and descriptions added to titles, headings, and links, is what boosts a search engine’s ability to find and index things. This is the basis of SEO, and this process of organizing and indexing data is what allows search engines like Bing, Google, and Yahoo to find your pages. The search engine then uses various metrics and popularity indicators to determine page ranking. Now you may be thinking, “This sounds expensive.” To this I say: it all depends on what you are trying to accomplish in... read more

Putting Out Fires—Is Your Company Prepared for a Social Media Crisis?

With nearly three billion internet users worldwide, internet users today spend more time on social media than on any other site. A study conducted in July of 2014 showed that Facebook alone has over 1.3 billion active accounts, while Google+ and Linkedin both listed 300 million, and Twitter followed with 255 million. These numbers are staggering and they only continue to grow, not only for personal accounts, but also in the workplace. Social media is a great tool for finding a job, furthering a career, launching a product, or just testing a brand’s market, to name a few options, but it can also reveal a negative, less professional side of an employee and cast a pernicious glow over an employer’s head. Some recent social posts that led employers to fire their employees for their comments range from a waitress shaming customers on Facebook for being bad tippers, to a nurse’s insensitive share on Instagram, a Detective’s comments on Facebook about people on public assistance, and a PR-rep’s racist tweet on AIDS. Although these are just a few, it is obvious that social media users are taking to the internet in droves to voice their opinions with little concern for their audience or privacy, little thought on how their post might reflect on their affiliations, or the ramifications from such impulsive and public posts. This is bad news for your business. In cases such as these it is important to recognize that the rules of social media are changing when it comes to business relations. While it is nearly impossible to control the rapid social evolution of a culture, steps can... read more

How to Recover from a Google Backlinks Penalty – Webinar Archive

How to Recover from a Google Backlinks Penalty – Webinar Archive Did you know that Google gives over 400,000 penalties every month? Your site could be next. Check out this webinar if you have a penalty, or if you’d like to make sure to avoid a penalty in the future. Josh Butler, SEO Manager with Apogee Results covers how you should react to a linking penalty message from Google. In this webinar archive you’ll learn: Types of link penalties from Google Actions to take once you know your situation Tools and processes to help you recover from a penalty Transcript: This is a subject we’ve been dealing with at Apogee Results quite a bit, how to recover from a Google backlink penalty. And this has been a very important subject to some of our clients because they’ve been put in a penalty box by Google that has greatly affected their business and they came to us unfortunately too late, after they’ve been feeling the pain of the penalty. What I mean by too late is there’s a time that if you suspect you could be at risk for a penalty you want to address it before get the actual penalty. But we’ll go into more detail of that later. But first I want to introduce myself. If you’re new to Apogee or me, my name is Joshua Butler. I’m the SEO Manager for Apogee Results. I’ve been leading the SEO services team. I’ve been involved in learning SEO since 2004. And I started in marketing a multi-local franchisor. I was the resident designer and became the marketing manager leading... read more

Wildfires Rage In Central Texas

As you may or may not have heard by now, there are some pretty serious wildfires going on around our beautiful city. While no one at Apogee has been directly affected by any of the fires, our hearts still go out to those who have lost their homes, livestock, pets, livelihoods, and unfortunately, lives. For anyone who may be wondering, the largest fire, known as the Bastrop Complex Fire, is about 25 miles east of downtown Austin. Smoke has hung heavy over the area for the past couple of days, due to thankfully calm winds. The smoke should blow out today due to a weak front we have pushing through, but that also means higher winds that increase the risk of flareups, new fires, or exacerbating the situation for the fires that still aren’t contained. At this point, we desperately need rain, but the entire state will gladly accept prayers, rain dances, good vibes–whatever you’ve got. Capt. Alan Donaldson of the Bastrop Fire Department looks at his his destroyed firefighting helmet at his burned down home on Tonkawa Drive in Bastrop’s Circle D Estates neighborhood on Wednesday Sept. 7, 2011. Photo courtesy of Austin American Statesman These fires, though, have prompted a lot of people to ask: What SHOULD/WOULD you grab if a fireman knocked on your door and told you to evacuate immediately? The Austin-American Statesman has compiled a list of things it would be nice to be able to take in case of an evacuation (let’s face it, though, if you have two minutes to get out odds are you’re thinking, pets, underwear, purse, cell phone and... read more

Post-Holiday PPC Clean Up

Ahhh, holidays. I’m guessing that about 50% of the country is hung over this chilly Monday morning due to either romantic champagne &  wine with a loved one, or contrary tequila shots & beer with friends or the TV. As you try to shake off the after-effects this holiday, remember to shake off any after-effects that various holidays may have left on your PPC campaigns. A lot of PPC campaigns are probably hung over from Valentine’s campaigns today, and many are still hung over from Christmas! Roses are red Violets are blue Valentine’s is over And Christmas is too A couple of weeks before valentine’s day I was searching for gourmet chocolates – probably a competitive keyword this time of year. Ad #4 was a an ad talking about Christmas Chocoaltes [sic] and chocolate santas. Time and again I come across outdated holiday promotions in PPC ads. And yes, I’ve had slip-ups myself over the years, but let this valentine’s day remind you to show your PPC ads some love. Scan through your ads for references to Christmases past (or any other holiday that’s not around the corner) Do a search for terms like Christmas, holiday, valentine, etc. & edit anything that comes up While you’re at it, go ahead and spell-check & grammar-check your ads... read more