Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Business Listings Scam

It has come up several times in discussions with my clients lately and I felt it needed to be addressed here so that those reading this do not fall victim. There are some individuals calling businesses and offering to register them on the maps section of Google and Yahoo for a considerable fee. I have heard for as much as $4,000.

The problem is that Google and Yahoo offer this as a free service and it only takes five minutes to set up. The individuals charging for this service are also asking businesses to acquire phone numbers and addresses that will trick the system into listing you high up on the map results. The search engines do not like this because the quality of the search results are corrupted. The more corrupt the search results become, the public will trust the search engine information less and the search engine's traffic will drop. This activity is on the search engines' radar and is being addressed. If you are approached by businesses engaged in this activity, Google would like you to report it at the following link http://maps.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=107528 .

Please let me know if you have been approached. How much did they want to charge? What did they promise you?

Friday, September 4, 2009

Honest Joe Needed Some Repair Work

Ever try to find a good, honest appliance and HVAC repair man? Well, you will soon be able to find that guy on Google, Yahoo, Bing, and yellowbook.com.

I had the recent pleasure of constructing a tailored internet marketing program for a repair man we'll call Joe. Joe had a very limited presence on the internet. He had listings on some small obscure industry directories and did not have a website to direct internet searches to. So, to increase his internet visibility and convert clicks to calls, I helped him with setting up an inexpensive full service website, a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) program, and a yellowbook.com ad with attached 30 second video.

Based on historical data of SEM programs in Joe's market area, click to call conversions for his business category have been through the roof. Joe is in one of those urgent service categories that folks are not searching the internet for unless they really need help. Coupling his SEM program with ad impressions from his yellowbook.com ad and 30 second video, should really make Joe's phone ring off the hook.

Joe's internet marketing plan was in real need of repair. I am glad I had the opportunity to work with him to construct a tailored program that will grow his business.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Stepping Out Of The Dog House With WebReach

I met with a new pet grooming and boarding business this past May. They had just opened up for business and needed to do whatever they could to drive business to their location as effectively and inexpensively as they possibly could. I have had the pleasure of crossing paths with many new business owners in this same situation. It is always a pleasure because I know how to help them and have done so for many others. It is as simple as "fishing where the fish are".

These folks spent several thousands of dollars on a beautiful website with functionality that is spectacular. On the site, a potential client can schedule a pet grooming appointment, book a pet kennel stay, and view their pet all day and overnight via online cameras. However, this online sales tool and butler was not being seen. Talk about being in the dog house . . . they needed their website to step out from obscurity and be place on the first page of Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

Fortunately, as we like to say in Texas . . . I helped them make that dog hunt. The solution was easy. I recommended using a search engine marketing (SEM) service offered by Yellow Book called WebReach. Based on phone call tracking reports that are part of the WebReach service, their website funnels appointments and calls every day of the month.

If needed, I can help you step out of the dog house too. Feel free to send me an e-mail or post your questions.