Birthday cake with 6 candle

6 Years In The 6

Today is the 6 year anniversary of Logical Mix.

It has been an awesome ride. Helping small to mid sized businesses grow their online presence has been one of the most rewarding things our company has offered the world. We pride ourselves on customer service and reliability, and that is what has kept us alive and well. Spending our clients money like it’s our own is our secret to success.

The online marketing world is an ever-changing one. We are constantly reading, listening, educating and going to conferences to learn about the digital world. We pass this knowledge on to our existing and new customers. We don’t focus as much as we should on our brand, because we are so focused on your brand. If your brand grows… Logical Mix grows.

SEO marketing in Toronto has been our bread and butter, but we do whatever it takes to get companies the exposure they deserve online. Whether it is web design, getting on local listings or directories, pay-per-click or social media…search engine marketing is what we do! (We stated that six years ago).

6 years in the 6 just sounded like the right title for this article.

This adventure has been incredible. We owe everyone we have had the opportunity to work with everything.

Thank you Toronto and the GTA (and Vancouver, USA, England, Thailand and China), for allowing us to work and build your economies.

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Logical Mix

Time to Upgrade

KEEP YOUR WEBSITE UPDATED

So you have a website; while that is a great start to having a successful search engine marketing platform for your business, having that and only that won’t quite cut it to increase your overall business revenue and customers. Almost every business has a website, in fact, according to the latest version of Business 2012; seventy-eight percent of businesses have a website, over two-thirds.  Now the question to ask is this: What makes a website flourish? What are the main tools and necessary steps one needs to take to ensure that they are hosting a fast moving and highly visited website? Fortunately, the answer is neither difficult nor complex, but rather business savvy – keep you and your company updated. Websites are a social platform built to inform potential customers and current customers what you are offering and why they should be interested in what you provide. However, it is not going to be effective if your latest and greatest deals, promotions, and products were from last month or perhaps even last year. Keeping your online presence updated secures repeat website visitors; just as repeat customers are profitable and desired for your business, so are repeat website visitors. If a previous customer has enjoyed your product and would like more information on what else you may offer or promotions you are holding, instead of calling, they are much more likely to visit your website. Now, just as it is essential to have a well laid out and well managed website, keeping this information fresh with new displays, pictures, and text is important to having a repeat internet visitor.

In addition, if your website is being featured on a search engine, you’re main goal is to have it appear on the first page of Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. If your website isn’t being frequently updated, these search engines will automatically assume that your site is not achieving a high number of hits and this can be extremely detrimental to your overall marketing scheme.  Just as important as it is for a business to have a website, it is even more important to have it being updated on a continuous basis with fresh new layouts and information to keep your customers wanting more. An even better marketing idea is to have an email subscription page set up on your website to invite your customers to receive weekly emails from your company providing them with the latest deals your business has to offer. Not only does this keep your business committed to updating on a weekly basis at minimum, but you’re directly hitting and targeting customers at a personal level. It is vital for the success of your business to have a visible online presence in this day and age where online media is being used as a primary tool for advertising. It’s crucial that your business is doing everything to promote yourself online, and by keeping your website stocked with new information on a regular basis, your customers will feel that your website can be the one stop shop to finding what they are looking for and need. So rather than focusing all your time and effort into plastering your windows with your special promotions, open your internet browser and begin with informing everyone there. It may take time to get used to as you may feel as though you are throwing information into a web of space (no pun intended), that space is built up of your customers, and even though they are not visible and you are not watching them drive by, their online presence is immense, and reaching that should be the ultimate goal for your business.
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Logical Mix

Spices with seafood

THE PERFECT SEO BLOG RECIPE

Blogging is an art, just as writing can be a form of art. For the last decade plus, blogging has slowly taken an upward transition to paving the way as a medium that is both interactive, informative and SEO friendly. However, just like writing is an acquired skill, blogging is a form of writing that targets a specific audience to engage them in an online source which is well written and insightful. There are various ways to grow a following on the internet, blogging being one of those ways; however, many may wonder in which ways one makes a blog to be as successful and well read that it can be.
1.       Content vs. Frequency
When creating a blog, especially in the initial stages, frequency is extremely vital. Not only does it show your reader that you are committed to updating your site, but it acts as a way to develop a following on the internet. It allows Google to crawl your website regularly to improve your SEO properly. Whether you are annoying your readers by posting and updating on a daily basis or whether you are updating once a month, frequency plays a crucial role in the number of readers your blog will encounter. However, this being said, rich content is of even more importance. For instance, having a friend on Facebook who updates their status multiple times a day stating exactly what they are doing such as “making a sandwich” or “doing laundry” is annoying and can even cause you to unfriend that person. However, say you like a news page on Facebook and they post the exact same number of times as your Facebook friend, but their updates are informative and interesting. The chance that you will unlike the news page because of their frequency is not as likely as the option of unfriending the annoying Facebook user who posts multiple pointless statuses. This shows the importance of content – your frequency can be often if your blog is informative and educational; this is solely because readers want to read what they find is most interesting. Content is central to having a solid base of followers who view your blog on a continuous basis. The content created on your blog will have a direct and powerful impact to your ongoing SEO efforts. Update regularly, but have quality content, content that will drive your reader to want and to need more. Content that you can link within your website will add SEO value as well.
2.       Original vs. Generic
How often do you see news channels retelling the same news stories over and over again, and then see a different channel retelling what you just heard on the previous station? To be original is to be unique and different, and as it was once stated by Coco Channel, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” You want your blog to be irreplaceable, you want it to be so that when a reader chooses whose blog they should visit first to be most informed, it should be none other than the one you have created.  Nevertheless, to be irreplaceable is to be different, and to be different means that one must take the initiative to dig deep for things that others may not see as important. It is your job to make the interesting important, and the important interesting. Original pieces of art attract attention, just as original and unique writing attracts a reader to want to know and read more. A generic blog post about the new iPhone 7 is not as interesting as the latest malfunction that has been found within the Galaxy 7. Don’t be generic writer, but rather, be a unique writer and write to entertain, write to capture your audience.  Following headlines is boring, every other person has done that, instead, take a unique angle on an already popular story and give it a twist.
3.       Blog Struggle vs. Blog Triumph
Blogging is a form of writing, and as any writer will know, “writers block” is a troubling and sometimes stressful form of block that can detour a writer from their ultimate vision. As a blogger, you know where you want to see your blog and how you want it to develop over time, however, “bloggers block” can sometimes distract you from your goals. The easiest way to deal with this is to continuously be watchful of what around you can be used within your blog. Whether it is a quote you recently heard or even the phone conversation the man next to you is having, if it can correlate into your blog, write it down. Once something is written down, you then have the ability to expand on that and to take the small piece of information and transform it into any direction you want it to go. Use the note pad function in your phone or carry a pad and pen on you at all times, write your thoughts and your ideas when they come to you on paper.
Creating a blog takes time and diligence, but if done correctly, you will quickly reap the rewards. By targeting the needs of your specific audience, creating quality blogs, and updating them to suit your readers, you will have a blog that catches eyes and dominates the search engines.

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Logical Mix

Santa reading

Have A Great Holiday Season

It’s been a great year! Internet marketing is such a joy for us.

We’ll be working hard, but everyone at Logical Mix wishes you all a great holiday season.

Happy Holidays.

 

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Logical Mix

Toronto Blue Jays 1978 Team Photo

ALT or Ault? Alt Attributes Are As Important As Doug Ault

If you follow @logicalmix on Twitter, you already know Logical Mix is a big fan of the Toronto Blue Jays. There was no way to avoid the SEO pun that is alt…Doug Ault.

Doug Ault hit the first home run in Toronto Blue Jays history way back in 1977, but I bet you couldn’t pick him out of this grainy 1978 team photo. Frustrating right? Think of an individual with low vision on a daily basis having to deal without being able to see the image being shown. You can hit the first SEO home run for your company and be seen (unlike Blue Jays in the team photo), by providing incredible accessibility for those with visual disadvantages at the same time.

ALT image text or ALT tags or more accurately: alt attributes allow those with a visual impairment to understand an image.

Joost de Valk is the founder and CEO of Yoast and says, “the alt tag is used by screen readers, the browsers used by blind and visually impaired people, to tell them what is on the image. The title attribute is shown as a tooltip when you hover over the element…”

Always remember, screen readers will be used for your website. Build your website to accommodate the blind. This is a win-win for all parties involved.

The beauty of helping create a more accessible website for people with blindness or low vision is getting the benefits of search engine optimization as well. As time goes on, it will become more common practice to properly label images (as it should be already).

Be a responsible web developer and design your websites with proper alt attributes. All you ever have to remember to say to yourself when publishing an image, “if I was blind, how would I want that image to read?”

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Logical Mix

seo buttons

SOME TAGS NEEDED FOR SEO

On-Page search engine optimization (SEO) is certainly an important part of the website building process. If you want to show up on the first page of any search engine’s search results, on-page SEO is a must. Logical Mix outlines the 3 most crucial elements needed to improve your on-page search engine optimization.
1) Title Tags: Can also be called ‘title elements’. The title tag is the text used to define an online document or the website page. Other than the relevant content on a web page, the title tag is the most important component to on-page search engine optimization.
2) Meta Description Tags: This is where your description is shown when getting search engine results. Your website’s content will be described exactly how you want the reader to interpret it on the search engine results page of Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. This is created on the back-end of your website using the HTML tags properly. Ask your developer to code this accurately to your specifications.
3) Alt Image Tags:  Alt Image Tags allow search engines to understand the attributes of an image by describing them in text form. Search engine robots/spiders have a hard time crawling images for SEO purposes without text on them. Another advantage to Alt Image Tags is if the picture doesn’t load on a website, at least there will be a description of what image should be shown. Again, these tags should be applied by whoever is building your website (whether it is you or a developer).
Two extra things to mention are using ‘Header Tags’ (accurate descriptions to summarize the content on a web page) properly and applying proper ‘descriptions/ file names to the images’ you will be displaying on your website. For example, PICTURE-DESCRIPTION.jpeg or PICTURE-DESCRIPTION.gif.
We hope this helps with your internet marketing efforts now and in the future.
Please write us or post if you want to discuss more.
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Logical Mix

Business road sign

WHY IS SIGNAGE SO IMPORTANT FOR BUSINESS

Let me share a personal story regarding business signage I encountered a few years back. When I was living in Vancouver, BC, there was a unique and delicious family owned pizza restaurant. It was a pizza place where they prepared the pizza for you, and you took it home and cooked it, making your entire kitchen smell like freshly baked pizza. The idea was brilliant, the pizza was amazing, and the customer service was out of this world. I visited the restaurant on a regular basis until a year after opening the owners moved north, and they ended up selling the business to a new set of owners. The new owners kept the same idea, used the same ingredients, and appeased the already existing customers, yet one simple poor marketing choice cost them their business as it ended any potential for attracting new customers – they changed the signage. The original owner had a simple but bright sign that could be seen from the nearest intersection, as well as handed out flyers and coupons door to door every Saturday morning. Their strategy was simple, but it worked. The new owners however did not upkeep these strategies and changed the sign to a black and white, non-visible, size 10, Arial font banner.  They then complained about not reaching people, but the reasons were evidently clear. Simply put, their signage cost them the entire success of their business.  Soon after their six month of opening, they shut the business down as it was costing them too much to operate and they were making little to zero revenue. The spot still remains empty and vacant to this day.
Now you may believe this case to be an extreme and rare, but the experience taught me at a young age the importance of signage, especially if you are taking over an already existing business. A sign can either attract someone in such a way they want to enter your business and learn more about what you offer, or in the case of the pizza store, your sign may cause them to laugh in embarrassment at the printed paper you have draping over your windows. The importance of advertising is vital to the overall success of a business, especially with small businesses. Signage is extremely important and can end up being the make or break in the overall success of your business. Here are some simple questions you should ask about your current signage on a monthly basis:
1.      Does this sign send the right message to my customer?
2.      Is the message relevant and eye-catching?
3.      Are the colors and design bright, vibrant, and noticeable?
4.      Is the sign visible in the early morning or late evening? Does it light up in the dark hours?
5.      Is the signage in tip top condition?
If your answer to any of these questions is no, then it is time to either invest in new signage or fix your current signage to accommodate the needs of your customers. If your signage does light up, but some of the bulbs are burnt out, the overall first impression from your customer is that your business does not have the time or care to replace the bulbs and update the sign.  More often than not, customers base a business purely off of their signage because it is the first thing they notice and it is their first impression. By ensuring that your signage is noticeable and in good condition, you will have a better chance at attracting the customers you desire to attract. Have good signage (logos/branding) online too. Get noticed.
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water on rocks

Blog About Needed Content

When blogging, you want to be the expert in your field. Own it!

Create content people are looking for or have a need for. If you are missing quality content to write about…avoid writing altogether and repost other peoples interesting articles.

Try searching your topics before writing. If they are already saturated with blogs, maybe rethink another strategy.

People want to be entertained and/or educated. Sometimes both. Get outside of the box if you have to.

Even though we should be taking our own advice. Blog on a schedule. Once per week, bi-weekly, per month, etc.

Write about relevant content.

Blogging can be done anywhere you want. This blog was written in the woods after working remotely around Ontario.

Remember…

Be the expert in your field!

Mouse for computer

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

So you want the most for your business, you want it to be seen, heard, and advertised to its best capability. While competition stands at the edge with the latest and greatest technologies, you want your business to draw the public in, and for the words on your site to be read. How does one improve their internet publicity in the best possible way? While there are various ways of doing so, managing your keywords is among the most important. Keywords are the crucial words that describe what you are offering and help determine where your ad will appear.

Choosing the most accurate keyword can help draw customers to your site as it targets exactly what they want. If you use specific keywords, and they search for a specific text, your advertisement or website has a better chance of appearing; by making it more specific, you are making it more viewable to the public and potential customers.  It is vital to think like your customers when you’re creating an initial list of terms or phrases that customers will use to describe your product or service. It is critical that the list of keywords you choose are the words that your customers will be searching when they want to find what you are offering. While it is important to make your words specific, it is helpful to bear in mind that sometimes making words too specific can be negatively impacting rather than positive. By making your keywords too specific you may find it harder to reach a vast amount of people. However, by combining general words along with specific phrases, you will be able to target the largest amount of people in an online community. Picking the accurate number of keywords is also crucial to achieving the highest amount of publicity. Google Support states that, “Most advertisers find it useful to have somewhere between five and twenty keywords per ad group, although you can have more than twenty keywords in an ad group”. In addition, grouping your keywords into themes can positively affect a customer’s search as it opens variety, which can therefore open your service or product up to potential customers.
While improving keywords is a vital part to having a successful online identity, creating better landing pages can also aid to improving search optimization. Your Google Adwords Quality Score is an estimate of how relative your ads and keywords are in helping Google users find what they are looking for and seeing your ad. Achieving a high quality score is the overall intention of any company as they want keywords that are helpful and useful to someone viewing their ad. Your landing page is the page your website visitors first view after clicking on a link that directs them to your landing page. In order to improve the performance of your search results, there are a few techniques that can be used to improve your page rank and quality score. By adding your top performing keywords and merging them together onto your landing page you can increase your search optimization and thus improve your Google quality score. In addition, by changing you landing page’s meta tags and title tags you can create a keyword density that works well with your landing page, as well as it acting as an aid in producing better search engine results.

Finally, a vital step is taking full advantage of what Google calls their Site-Related Keywords Tool. This tool is used to view how exactly Google ranks your landing page in regards to the relevance it has to the keywords you are trying to target. By using this tool, you can better understand how Google distinguishes between a website whose keywords work well for their landing pages, and a website that has poor keywords that do not directly target their associated landing page. By accurately using keywords that help to best optimize search engine results, you can get the most out of using online resources as a way to advertise for your company. Online sources are one of the most effective ways to advertise, and by using them accurately you can create an online profile for your company that aids in the development of your overall client base.

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Logical Mix

Beer popping

NEW YEAR’S EVALUATION

Another new year is upon us. It’s the perfect time of year to reevaluate your company’s goals and marketing efforts. You should be looking introspectively at your company’s results through marketing and make changes accordingly.

Questions to ask yourself:
1) Are we meeting or have we met the sales goal we set at the beginning of the year?
2) Are we on the first page on major search engines (For keywords & key phrases relevant to our business)?
3) How can we improve our overall exposure to potential clients or prospects?

The Answers:
1) If you said “yes” to meeting your goals, keep doing what you’re doing. Don’t mess up a good thing. You may want to add to your current efforts, but certainly don’t let them interfere with what is working.
If your answer was “no”, you need to ramp up your activity to drive new business for your organization. Let’s assume you’re happy with your sales staff (if not, it’s time to increase training or let them go), here are some tips to help increase sales:
Do a PPC (Pay-Per-Click) campaign: Drive traffic to your website. Create landing pages to aid in improving search optimization and watch the leads role in for your sales team.
Create a New Website or edit old Website: Make sure it looks professional and has the right “call to action”.
Search Engine Optimize: More on this in the 2) section. Create an Email Campaign or Direct Mail campaign: These are older methods to drive leads for your business, but can sometimes work wonders.

2) With regards to getting your company’s website on the first page of Google, Bing and/or Yahoo, write down a list of 10 key words or key phrases you want your company to show up for. Think like your prospects would think for this list. Write down a list of 10 (or the relevant number) geographic locations you want to be found in, if applicable. Take those lists to an internet marketing expert who can get you to the top of those pages desired (wink, wink, Logical Mix). Items to make sure are accurate on your website are: Title Tags, Alt Image Tags, Relevant Text and the Meta Description to name a few.

3) In the case of not seeming redundant, do all of the the above and you will be well on your way to improving your overall exposure to potential clients or prospects. Take it seriously, your business depends on it.

Enjoy the holiday season, recharge the batteries and always be thinking of strategies to grow your company (because, we are).

Wishing your organization a prosperous 2015!

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Logical Mix