Google knows what you type, watch, and say — unless you take these steps

You might laugh thinking about all the random Google searches you’ve done over the years. Imagine someone getting access to that list, and you might instead shudder in embarrassment.

Did you know your entire Google history is accessible online? If you’re signed in, a snoop can poke through it all. Tap or click here for steps to password protect that page and your private info.

There are, of course, ways to keep your searches private. Tap or click for some clever methods, including hiding your activity from your internet service provider and wiping your browser sessions.

When you rely on Google and its services, though, you know many things are being tracked. Here are three you can stop.


1. Every email you type

Google scans the contents of your inbox, from receipts and private messages to medical documents and bills.

The handy Smart Compose setting even allows Google to scan your emails as you type them. It’s an AI-powered feature that tries to help you write faster. It helps finish common phrases. “Let me” becomes “Let me know if you have any questions.”

Although it’s useful, it means Google is watching what you type as you type it. You can turn Smart Compose off. Here’s how:

  • Open Gmail.
  • Tap the gear icon in the upper right corner for Settings.
  • Select See all settings.
  • Choose the General tab near the top of the page.
  • Scroll to the Smart Compose section.
  • Turn Writing suggestions off by clicking on the circle next to it.
  • Scroll to the bottom and click Save Changes.

It’s worth noting: Google still has access to all the content in the emails you send and receive. If you want to stop that, you need to switch to a privacy-based email inbox.

2. OK, Google, are you listening?

Despite what Big Tech companies say, smart assistants often listen more than you intend. The reason is simple: Sometimes, your device hears one thing you say and interprets it as the wake word.

You can always turn Google Assistant off if you’re not using it.

How to turn off Google Assistant on Android:

  • Open the Settings app on your phone. Then, scroll down and tap Account Services.
  • Tap Search, Assistant & Voice. Then, tap Google Assistant.
  • Tap on Assistant. Then, scroll down to Assistant devices and tap Phone.
  • Tap the Google Assistant slider to turn it off.

How to turn off Google Assistant on iPhone:

  • Open Settings > Privacy.
  • Locate the menu labeled Microphone and tap it.
  • Find Assistant in the list of apps and toggle the green switch to the off position.
  • Go a step further and shut down every device that might be listening. Tap or click for steps to tell Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and others to butt out.

3. And then there are the videos you watch

After Google, YouTube is the second largest search engine on the web. And, of course, it is owned by Google. That means the company knows the videos you watch, the comments you leave, and who you interact with.

Clearing your YouTube history is simple. Head to My Google Activity, select YouTube History and switch the toggle to Off.

Be warned: YouTube will still track your search history. On the YouTube History page, you will see a section that says Filter by date. To the left, tap on the small down arrow next to Delete. A box will pop up and you can clear out your searches. Confirm by hitting Delete and you’re good to go.


Check out my podcast “Kim Komando Explains” on Apple, Google Podcasts, or your favorite podcast player.

We think of our gadgets as helpful tools that make our lives easier, but they can also be turned against us. The data your devices collect is so valuable it could be used against you in a criminal trial, requested by police or even bought by the government through a data broker. I sat down with technologist Bennett Cyphers from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, who reveals all the secrets you’re losing — and which devices do the most stealing.

Listen to the podcast here or wherever you get your podcasts. Just search for my last name, “Komando.”

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television, or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

Copyright 2021, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved. By clicking the shopping links, you’re supporting my research. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. I only recommend products I believe in.

How to Delete a Yelp Review

You know the feeling. That sinking feeling. You see you’ve got a new review, you pull it up expecting to see good things, and then bam! It’s a one-star bombshell. And then the disappointment grows when you realize the poor feedback has been shared on Yelp.

With over 31 million app users and millions more web visitors, Yelp is a platform with a high level of visibility. A poor experience amplified on Yelp can have immediate fallout and impact your bottom line.

Yelp’s own research suggests that 90% of Yelp users make a purchase within seven days of visiting the platform, so you’ll need to act quickly to protect your business.

So can you delete a Yelp review? The good news is that ‘yes it can be done’ (mostly), but with a caveat that users can’t do it themselves. It takes a little work and know-how, so either skip straight to the steps, or read on to find out more about bad reviews and the Yelp platform first.

Why You May Need to Remove a Bad Review

Whether a review is a fair assessment of a customer’s experience or not, any poor review is potentially problematic because peer feedback is so intrinsic to the modern decision-making process.

Today’s consumers use reviews to:

  • Create shortlists of businesses to buy from
  • Compare and contrast potential product/service providers
  • Decide between businesses offering the same thing
  • Weed out businesses that may provide a disappointing experience

Consumers reading positive reviews are more likely to interact with that business—by visiting the website (31%), traveling to the business location (17%), or contacting the business (12%).

Conversely, negative reviews make 92% of consumers less likely to use a business. Removing fake or malicious reviews can therefore have a very tangible real-world impact.

Yelp and Fake Reviews

The Harvard Business Review says there is a “large and thriving market” for fake reviews. Given that reviews not only influence consumers and sales figures but also search engine rankings, it’s no surprise that they’re big business.

As a real-life example, data cited as part of a 10-month study of restaurant reviews suggests that Yelp filters out about 16% of reviews as ‘being fake’ with its own algorithm. That leaves a high proportion of risk for local business owners in that industry.

Yelp also says that it is a “community-driven site” and doesn’t take the removal of third-party content such as images or reviews lightly. It also says it won’t take sides in factual disputes.

Clearly, it’s not a cut-and-dried process, so the best thing to do is to approach the review as genuine, whilst also looking for any evidence that it’s fake or malicious.

1. Responding to bad Yelp reviews

The temptation will be to rush in quickly with a strongly-worded reply. Resist that temptation!

Poorly worded review responses can quickly create a negative impression of your business and put other customers off using you. In the worst-case scenario, they could also go viral, creating exactly the kind of publicity you don’t want for your business.

You’ll need to keep a cool head, and show that you’ve tried addressing the bad review in a constructive and professional way.

  • If you have a record of that customer, try connecting with them offline to fully understand the issues that led to the poor review.
  • If you can’t find contact information, leave a (very) polite reply thanking the customer for their feedback, assure them that you wish to investigate further, and invite them to reach out so that you can work towards a resolution.

For a genuinely negative experience, this should impress the reviewer with your commitment to putting things right, allowing you to ask them to update (or even delete) the original review to give a more balanced opinion.

We’ve put together an article on dealing with negative reviews like a pro.

2. Deleting a malicious Yelp review

If the above fact-finding mission fails, then take comfort in knowing you’re now in a stronger position to report the review to Yelp as being false, defamatory or malicious in nature.

Yelp has clear guidelines governing reviews left on its site. It specifies that reviews:

  • Should not be exchanged for payment
  • Should be based on the reviewer’s own first-hand experience
  • Should be factually correct
  • Should not be based on previous brand interactions
  • Should not be promotional
  • Should not represent a conflict of interest (leaving a positive review for a friend’s business or a negative review of a competitor for example)

Start with “Should be factually correct”. Collate as much information from your business records as you can, including your documented attempts to address their concerns as genuine.

See if you can prove that the review has a clear conflict of interest, such as a review left by a disgruntled former employee or a competitor.

Highlight any examples of inappropriate material, such as threats, hate speech, or harassment—either in the original review or in subsequent communications.

You can now skip to the step-by-step process of requesting a review removal from Yelp.

3. Deleting a fake Yelp review

As noted above, fake reviews are big business in some corners of the internet, and they’re a pain to investigate if there’s no genuine information to cross-reference within your business.

Instead, make a strong case for removal by gathering evidence to present to Yelp:

  1. Dig into your client records to verify that they’re not a genuine customer. This shows that they’re in violation of Yelp’s requirement that all reviews relate to that person’s own experience of your business.
  2. Take a look at how many other reviews that person has left and for what businesses. A brand new account with just your review is a strong indicator that it’s fake.
  3. Study the language and tone of the review. Is this mirrored on other reviews posted at the same time? If so, it could be a part of a wider fake review campaign.
  4. Check if you have a series of other bad reviews, posted at the same time but by different usernames. This is a common tactic used by fake review spammers.

Once you’ve collected enough evidence of fakery to present to Yelp moderators, you’re ready to submit your request.

How to Get a Yelp Review Removed

Here’s the nitty-gritty of how to remove bad reviews from Yelp—and always keep in mind that the more evidence you can present here the better.

Step 1 – Claim your Yelp business profile

If you’ve not done so already, then the first step to remove Yelp reviews is to claim your Yelp business profile.

This is easy to do—go to Yelp For Business and follow the steps outlined. This Yelp blog post also provides more detailed instructions if you need help with this essential step.

Step 2 – Log in and find the review

Log into your Yelp business account. From your dashboard, navigate to “Reviews” and then scroll down to find the review you’re asking Yelp to remove.

Step 3 – Go to the “Report review” button

You’ll see three dots to the side of the review text. Click on those dots to pull up a menu and from there, select “Report review”.

Step 4 – Complete the form

Select the most appropriate reason for requesting the Yelp review removal, and complete the form with as much information as possible. It will then be reviewed by the platform’s Moderators.

Step 5 – Be patient!

Now comes the hard part…the wait! Yelp will inform you of the outcome of their investigation, and in the event that the Yelp review is removed, the original author will also be notified.

This process can take up to a week, but either way, you should be notified of the result. If you don’t hear anything, then contact Yelp directly with your case number to try and secure an update.

What if the Yelp Review Isn’t Removed?

Yelp may not uphold your complaint. If that’s the case, then the negative review will remain on your profile.

While this is frustrating, your best course of action is to learn what you can from the feedback so that future reviews will be more positive.

Our complete guide to building positive reviews is packed with tips, strategies and advice to help you do just that.

Got any tips on how to remove reviews from Yelp? Let the community know in our comments section below.

How to Calculate Your SEO ROI Using Google Analytics

You’ve spent hours learning the most effective SEO tactics, but they won’t be useful if you can’t measure them.

Measuring SEO return on investment (ROI) involves two factors: KPIs (key performance indicators) and the cost of your current SEO campaigns. Tracking these key metrics monthly enables you to tweak and optimize your strategy, as well as make educated business decisions.

To get the most bang for your buck (or time), consider using Google Analytics (GA) to calculate your ROI. With GA, you can pinpoint where your audience is coming from, set goals to stay on track, and incorporate the most attractive keywords to rank better in search engines.

Ways to calculate your SEO ROI using Google Analytics

#1 Page value

Page value is an important aspect to consider when talking about ROI.

Think about it like money. In the US, paper money has been dated back to the late 1600s as a way of symbolizing the value of something. Instead of bartering, citizens began attaching a value to a 10 dollar bill or a 100 dollar bill to obtain an item they needed that was worth the equivalent value.

Page value assigns an average monetary value to all pages viewed in a session where a transaction took place. Specifically for e-commerce sites, it helps assign a value to non-transactional pages such as articles and landing pages. This is useful to understand because although a blog didn’t necessarily produce revenue, that doesn’t mean it didn’t contribute to a customer’s buying decision in the future.

With lead generation pages, a value can be assigned to a goal like the contact form submission, so you can more accurately measure whether or not you’re on track.

Below is a visual that depicts how page value is calculated according to Google:

In the first example, Page B is visited once by a user before continuing to the Goal page D (which was assigned a value of $10) and Receipt page E (which generated $100). That means a single pageview of Page B generated $110, which gives us its Page Value.

In equation form, this is how it looks:

Page Value for Page B =
E-commerce Revenue ($100) + Total Goal Value ($10)
Number of Unique Pageviews for Page B (1)
= $110

But not all pageviews lead to a conversion. That’s why it’s important to keep track of data and recalculate your Page Value as more information comes in. Let’s see how this works with the second example.

Here we see two sessions but only one converted to an e-commerce transaction (session 1). So even if we have two unique pageviews for Page B, the e-commerce revenue stays the same. We can then recalculate our Page B’s Page Value using this new information.

Page Value for Page B =
e-commerce revenue ($100) + Total Goal Value ($10 x 2 sessions)
Number of Unique Pageviews for Page B (2)
= $60

With more sessions and more data, you’ll get a better idea of which pages contribute most to your site’s revenue.

#2 E-commerce settings

If you’re not managing an e-commerce business, skip this section. For those of you who do, there’s a more advanced feature on Google Analytics that can prove extremely useful. By turning on the e-commerce settings, you can track sales amounts, the number of orders, billing locations, and even the average order value. In this way, you can equate website usage to sales information and better understand which landing pages or campaigns are performing the best.

How to turn on e-commerce settings

  • In your Google Analytics left sidebar panel, click on ADMIN > under the VIEW panel (rightmost panel), click on “E-commerce Settings” > Enable E-Commerce > Enable Enhanced E-commerce Reporting.

To finalize this go over to where it says, “Checkout Labeling” underneath the Enhanced E-commerce settings, and under “funnel steps” type in:

  1. Checkout view

  2. Billing info

  3. Proceed to payment

Below is a picture to better explain these steps:

If you have Shopify or Woocommerce, make sure to set up tracking over there, too, so that Google Analytics can communicate and relay this crucial information to you.

Once you have the E-commerce tracking setup, you’ll have access to the following data:

  • An overview of your revenue, E-commerce conversion rate, transactions, average order value, and other metrics

  • Product and sales performance

  • Shopping and checkout behavior

These give you a better understanding of how your customers are interacting with your site and which products are selling the most. In terms of calculating SEO ROI, knowing the steps that your customers take and the pages they view before making a purchase helps you analyze the value of individual pages and also the effectiveness of your overall SEO content strategy.

#3 Sales Performance

Again, this is for e-commerce only. The sales performance feature shows sales from all sources and mediums. You can view data for organic traffic only and identify its revenue.

How to view your sales performance

  • In your Google Analytics’ left panel, click on “Conversions” > “E-commerce” > “Sales Performance”.

This gives you an overview of your revenue and a breakdown of each transaction. Tracking this through time and seeing how it trends guides your content strategy.

What is the average transaction amount and what does it tell you about your customers? Does tweaking your copy to promote up-sells or cross-sells have an impact on your per-transaction revenue?

Another set of data that helps you calculate your SEO ROI and optimize your content strategy is your customers’ shopping behavior.

How to see your customers’ shopping behavior in-depth

  • Click over to “Conversions” > “E-Commerce” > “Shopping Behavior”

At a glance, you can see how effective your purchase funnel is – how many sessions continue from one step to the next? How many people went to your page and didn’t purchase, or added to the cart but didn’t follow through with payment?

This helps you identify areas that need more SEO attention. This also helps you draw projections on how much your revenue can increase by optimizing your copy and implementing SEO to boost organic traffic, which helps you get a better idea of your SEO ROI.

For instance, if there’s a high percentage of users visiting your page but not going through the buying cycle, maybe you need to tweak your copy to include searchable keywords or copy that resonates better with your audience.

Additionally, it’s worth remembering that while this does show organic sales, you can’t identify the keyword that led to that sale, but organic traffic can be an indicator of holistic marketing efforts working. For example, PR may increase brand searches on Google.

Quick tip: you can get an idea of which keywords bring in the most traffic to your website with Google Search Console and then follow the navigation history from Google Analytics in order to connect specific keywords with sales.

Overall, to truly measure the ROI of your SEO you need to discover which keywords are working for your business, because although people may be interested in your business due to some amazing PR exposure, they might not actually be interested in your services. To really hit this one home, select keywords that have purchase intent. That way you can attract more qualified leads to your site.

#4 Engagement Events

If you’re not working on an e-commerce site (hint, hint, my fellow B2B marketers), here’s where you’ll want to pay attention. Both e-commerce and lead generation sites can make use of engagement events.

Align with your sales team to assign a value to a goal based on average order value, the average number of sign-ups, and conversion rate. Although useful for e-commerce, these analytics are likely to be most beneficial for lead generation sites who have longer sales cycles and transactions that occur off-site or after multiple sessions (for example, B2B SaaS or a marketing agency).

Examples of engagement events include:

  • Newsletter sign up

  • Contact form submission

  • Downloads

  • Adding to a cart

How to view your campaign engagement data

  • Click on “Behavior” > “Events” > “Top Events”

Below is an image so you can follow along:

This type of tracking gives greater insight into how people are interacting with parts of your website, and how engaged they are at different parts of the journey. Use it to set goals for your lead generation and investigate whether or not your SEO efforts are paying off.

Let’s say you find that your website gets a ton of traffic to your services page, and a high percentage of those visitors download a case study. This means they’re interested in what you have to offer and would like to see more case studies from you.

Use ROI calculations to make better strategic decisions for your business

Ultimately, when using Google Analytics for SEO, you should work to align business goals with specific measurable metrics so that you can create a long-term plan for sustainable growth. It’s no secret SEO is a powerful tool for your business, but putting it into an actionable and personalized plan to get the train continuously going uphill is what counts.

How much does a website design or redesign cost in 2021?

Website Design Cost
Designing a website yourself is the cheapest option. The cost can range anywhere from a $100 to $3,000 or more. A simple custom website design from an agency can range from $15,000 to $30,000, whereas bigger and more complicated websites will cost between $40,000 to $75,000+.

How much will your new website cost?

Your website is the most important sales and marketing tool you have. It’s the hub of your inbound marketing strategy and it’s the number one thing your prospects want to explore before making a purchase, or even talking to a human.

Now that most businesses understand the value of inbound marketing, business websites overall are getting better. They’re faster, sleeker, mobile-friendly, and expected to be more useful. This is great for the consumer but makes the job of a marketer that much harder.

In this environment, we’re all forced to step our game up if we want to stand out from our competitors, which leads us to the inevitable project all modern businesses will face at one point or another — a website redesign.

The cost of a website redesign can vary tremendously from as low as a few hundred dollars if you do it yourself to millions of dollars for an advanced, custom-built website.

Since businesses often have no idea how much they should pay for a website redesign and what to expect for their money, we’ve decided to answer that question once and for all.

Why web design costs have increased

Like everything else, the price of a website redesign largely comes down to supply and demand. When the internet was still relatively new, businesses didn’t understand how valuable a website really was, so they weren’t willing to pay a high price.

Today, a website is one of the first considerations a business makes when planning their launch. In fact, many entrepreneurs narrow down their potential business names based on which domains are available and how the URL will look.

Of course, increased demand isn’t the only factor, however.

Websites must be more advanced now

As time has passed, web designers have improved their techniques and they have access to much better tools. On one hand, pumping out a decent-looking website is easier than ever with builders like Squarespace and WIX. On the other hand, building a truly first-class, strategic website requires more work.

The digital landscape is rapidly evolving — even more than in the first decade of the internet. For example, it wasn’t until 2015 that Google announced that their search algorithms would show preference to mobile-friendly websites, even though web designers were preaching its importance since around 2009;

They knew that not only did businesses need to deliver a better user experience, but eventually Google would raise the standards looking at the growth of mobile buyer behavior. At the time, mobile design was more difficult than it is today, and it was much easier for designers (and cheaper for their clients) to avoid it.

In today’s world, if your website doesn’t include mobile optimization Google is going to penalize you for it.

Now websites also contain live chat so users can instantly get in contact with your company, self-selection tools to show them the right services and products to solve their problems, and even calculators to show them how much they can save/grow/transform (insert your word here) when working with your team.

Not only has functionality changed, but the requirements to have an optimized website have become more rigorous. Focusing on page speed, accessibility, and user experience are more important than ever.

All of these factors can affect the cost of your website redesign, but another major is the process or method behind its execution.

In this article, we’ll look at three of the most popular methods: building your website yourself with an online tool, hiring a freelancer, or hiring an agency.

The cost of doing your own website redesign

Building or redesigning a website yourself with a template is usually the cheapest option. It can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars to $3,000 or more, but the real “cost” here is the time and hassle required.

Generally speaking, the less money you spend, the more time and hassle you can expect to deal with to get the site how you want it — and it likely won’t be exactly how you want it to be without the ability to code.

New startups with limited budgets and no web developer often have to start small. ThemeForest offers tons of affordable website themes (especially for WordPress) to choose from that usually cost around $30 to $100.

Functionality, performance, and ease-of-use from those themes vary widely including the level of customization you can achieve, how easily it is to update the theme, and out of the box templates that are included. Once you find a theme that meets your needs, you’ll also have to make sure that it’s received a lot of positive reviews, has a strong track record, and allows you to make edits without any technical skill.

Another popular option is a website builder such as Elementor, which is essentially an updated back-end editor for your website that you install on WordPress. This allows you to create content and edit the visual features of your theme with ease by giving you a variety of modules and widgets to level, each with its own unique formatting and styling options.

Once you’ve installed the framework, you’ll be able to select a theme to match the aesthetic you’re looking to achieve.

Their framework is a huge step up from the average, lower-priced themes on the market. They look great, are mobile-friendly, optimized for search engines, and easy to use. Take a look at their themes here — a lot of them will look familiar because tons of websites use them.

You can start using Elementor for free, but the Pro level of $49 per year for one site gives you more robust widgets, templates, support, and more.

However, if you want more marketing capabilities and integration, there’s an even better option.

We recommend using HubSpot’s CMS Hub, which costs $300 per month. They have many customizable themes to choose from or you can build one from scratch using their drag-and-drop builder. CMS Hub also has everything you need built-in, from SEO to content management so there is little need for add-ons.

Our own website runs on CMS Hub and we’ve loved it.

The cost of hiring a freelancer for a website redesign

The next level up from building your own website is hiring a freelance website designer. Freelancers have various levels of talent and will charge accordingly.

Depending on what your goals are, you’ll be able to find a freelancer that will charge anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 for a simple website and upwards of $10,000 to $20,000+ for a bigger website with a variety of template designs, custom features, and a more professional aesthetic than you may be able to create on your own.

They will vary further depending on the experience of your freelancer and your project details.

For example, if your freelancer is extremely talented and can build you a custom self-selection tool such as a product configurator, or you opt to go through a branding exercise with them your costs may go even higher than that.

When working with a freelancer, you can likely expect a design that looks good and functions well without any glaring flaws. They will likely take your ideas, come up with a few mock-ups for you to consider, and then they’ll build off of the one you like best.

In most cases, the freelance designer is primarily focused on delivering the aesthetic appeal you describe to them while suggesting certain features to improve user experience.

However, the downsides are that freelancers tend to be more hit-or-miss. The project might take longer if they are doing everything by themselves or are juggling multiple projects, and they might not offer much insight outside of design and development knowledge.

At the end of the day, if you’re not in the DIY type of mood, you’ll likely be able to find a freelancer to fit your budget, just keep in mind that it will go up or down based on how big and complex your project is.

The cost of hiring an agency for a website redesign

The other option is hiring an agency to handle your website redesign, which gives you access to a team of seasoned experts who likely have experience with goals like yours and designing a website around them. s. However, as you would expect, a website redesign from an agency costs the most.

A simpler website redesign can run anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000 depending on the size of the site, whereas websites with a large page count, custom functionality, and more unique needs can cost between $40,000 and $75,000+.

This may seem absurd compared to the other options, but  working with an agency goes much further than superficial design. Agencies spend equal time on content, user experience, conversion rate optimization, and everything else that makes your website a valuable asset to your company and to actually achieve your goals.

What sets an agency apart from most freelance web designers is the amount of strategy that goes into building a powerful and effective lead-generating machine for your business.

A typical agency will work with you to map your sitemap architecture so you can understand the structure of your website and how the users will navigate through it to their goals. They’ll also look at your historical data to make recommendations on what will work best for your specific users — all with the goal of removing friction in the user’s journey.

You’re gaining access to a range of experts who can pull from their combined years of experience across design, development, strategy, content, testing, and more, not just a single, finite resource.

If you have the budget to hire an agency, it’s well worth your time to talk with some to see what options you have available.

Continuous improvement through growth-driven design

Your website design or redesign launching, while a cause for celebration, doesn’t mean you should move on to new projects until you redesign again in three years.

That’s another reason to consider an agency, and the team of experts you get access to — Growth-driven design. Growth-driven design is a website redesign process that helps you build a stronger website month over month using user data to help improve the user journey.

Just like a plant needs water, light, care and attention to grow strong and thrive, so does your website. It needs to be monitored, regularly updated, and re-calibrated both to reflect the changes in your business and to meet the evolving needs of your buyer.

I know what you’re thinking, “This sounds expensive” and yes, there is an investment to make to continuously improve your website.

You can expect anywhere from $5,000 per month to $10,000 per month on growth-driven design with an agency depending on how aggressive your goals are and how much focus you’re willing to put into research and updates.

Each quarter you’ll work with the agency team to identify the biggest areas for improvement on your site based on user data, plan tests and experiments to drive better results, and execute on them through design, copy, and UX changes among other things.

It’s a collaborative process that enables your team to add to the roadmap of items to be worked on and prioritize it based on what will yield the most improvement to the user and metrics.

How does content affect the cost of your website redesign?

Content is one the most important parts of your website redesign.

It’s what gets your site to rank in the search engines, drives your user to take action, and sets your company up as a thought leader and expert that buyers should trust.

At the most basic level, your website exists to connect with your prospects and persuade them to buy what you offer. Unless you’re selling some type of design service, no one is going to be persuaded to buy based on your design alone — it’s the content that delivers your value proposition.

It’s also one of the more time-consuming aspects of a redesign.

To tackle it, we ideally recommend taking a content-first approach, where you build your website around your content, instead of designing your website and filling in the content afterwards.

However, in a world where most companies want their website redesigned yesterday, a more realistic approach is to focus on the 20% of your website that drives 80% of the value for your user — then continue to update the rest after your relaunch.

A great design is important as it helps deliver your message effectively and enhances the user experience — but without the content, the design won’t matter.

Content when building your website yourself

If you’re doing a website redesign yourself, start by mapping out all of the pages you want your website to include and then write the actual content for each of those pages. That way, when you’re comparing website themes, you can pick out one that accommodates your content strategy best.

Content when working with freelancers and agencies

A lot of freelance web designers will either have a copywriter they collaborate with or they’ll be happy to work with a copywriter that you hire yourself. Either way, you want to ensure that both individuals are on the same page because the process requires some back-and-forth communication.

Agencies will vary in how they support your content creation. Ranging from having an in-house content writer to create content for you to leveraging an outsourced network of writers.

Writing copy for a large website is no small undertaking — it’s basically writing the book about your business and should be treated with the same importance.

That’s why focusing on the most important pages for your redesign, then improving the rest over time versus doing all content at once can prove beneficial.

Content costs will widely range depending on the size of your site, the amount of content, and the level of expertise needed (and if you’re doing it yourself or having someone else do it). You can expect to pay anything from a few hundred to thousands of dollars for the right content for your website.

Putting the price of your website into perspective

Imagine you just hired a new salesperson who works around the clock, day and night, promoting your business to prospects with perfect consistency. Given the right tools, this salesperson continually improves with minimal supervision and intervention on your part.

Whenever a prospect wants information about your business at midnight, and you’re sleeping, your star employee is there with a big smile and all the information your prospect desires.

Now imagine this new sales rep doesn’t want to work on commission, doesn’t want a salary, and could care less about any of the benefits your company offers. All they want is an upfront fee of $40,000 and a few thousand each month to keep their skills sharpened.

Would that be worth it to you?

Of course, it would. Your company website is this dream sales rep — well, a great company website.

Inbound marketing is the premier form of marketing today and your website is the foundation of your inbound marketing strategy. Everything else revolves around bringing more people to it so it can work its magic on them.

No human alive can do what a great website can for your business, yet, so many businesses look at it as one of the first areas to cut corners.

Humans will always play invaluable roles in business, and remarkable employees deserve the high salaries they command, but where else can you get the incredible ROI that a powerful, well-designed website offers?

Your website is the smartest and cheapest salesperson you’ll ever hire. Treat it right.

What Is Website Maintenance and Why Is It so Important?

What Is Website Maintenance?

Website maintenance is the act of regularly checking your website for issues and mistakes and keeping it updated and relevant. This should be done on a consistent basis in order to keep your website healthy, encourage continued traffic growth, and strengthen your SEO and Google rankings.

Keeping a website well maintained and attractive is important to companies big and small in order to engage and retain customers. It’s easy for businesses, especially startups, to cut corners and let a few tasks slide.

Website maintenance can easily become one of those things as it doesn’t always present immediate issues. However, just like your health can fall apart if you go too long without a regular check up, so can the health of your website.

Regular monitoring of your website is a must for keeping your business running smoothly.

What Are the Steps in Website Maintenance? A Quick Checklist

There is a laundry list of tasks that should be done to keep your website running smoothly. The most time-sensitive of these are website security updates and patches. Without these, your website has the potential to be an actual danger to those who click on it.

With that in mind, here is a list of website maintenance tasks that should be completed regularly:

To be done weekly:

  • Check that all of your pages are loading without errors
  • Run a backup and make sure a previous version of your site is stored
  • Make updates to website software and plugins
  • Check that all of your forms are running properly
  • Remove any spam comments from pages and posts
  • Check your pages to see if there are any broken links
  • Search for 404 errors and fix or redirect
  • Write one or more blog posts to keep your community engaged and encourage SEO traffic.

To be done monthly

  • Check the load speed of your website and ensure that nothing is bogging it down
  • Review your security scans and make sure nothing is out of place
  • Analyze website statistics from the previous month
  • Check your blog to see if there are any articles that could be updated

To be done quarterly

  • Review your website design and structure – can be it improved?
  • Check graphics and images – should anything be updated?
  • Review SEO and meta titles and descriptions to ensure they are as effective as possible
  • Test and tweak popups, forms, and calls to action
  • Review your workload for efficiencies to see if anything can be automated
  • Test your website on all devices and browsers to see if it displays correctly
  • Review advertising and marketing campaigns to see if anything needs to be changed or updated.
  • Restore a previous version of the website to check your backup health

To be done yearly

  • Update any reference to the current year
  • Review each page for content accuracy, grammar, typos, and relevancy
  • Check any active email addresses and see if any are excessive and can be deleted
  • Ensure that your website domain name is renewed
  • Consider whether a website design update is due
  • Review all of your top performing blog articles and see if they can be updated with new content

A Proper Website Maintenance Plan Is a Circle

As you can see from our checklist, website maintenance should be a consistent part of your business. It grows on itself, and if not correctly implemented, can cause some serious problems and setbacks to your potential growth and business health.

Staying on top of website health takes awareness and organization. This is particularly the case for a large site with hundreds (or even thousands) of pages.

With the introduction of new tools to make website building easier, website sizes are growing each year. While it’s easy to add pages to most websites, it’s not as easy to keep all of your pages in a good state.

All that to say: keep on top of your website maintenance.

Why Is It Important to Do Website Maintenance?

Many new businesses already have a lot on their plates without worrying about constantly checking in on their website. It’s tempting to buy a domain name, throw up something temporary, and just worry about it later. There are many reasons why this is not a good idea. Maintaining a current, healthy, and active website is important for a number of reasons.


The whole point to starting a business is to have customers, clients, or an audience. To drive traffic to your website, you’ll need to keep it regularly updated.

Google wants to rank websites that have the most relevant and up-to-date information on their search engine results page . They may even de-index your website entirely if it hasn’t been updated recently enough and if they suspect it has been infected by malware. You must keep your website regularly updated with current content, news, keywords, and articles in order to rank well in search results.

Regularly website maintenance is invaluable for SEO strategy.

Customer Attraction/Engagement

If your website is gaining traction and traffic, it’s important to keep those potential customers. If they aren’t able to find what they are looking for, current information and relevant content, there is a good chance you’ll lose interest quickly. In order for your website to be the useful tool you want, you’ll need to ensure it is free from typos and grammar issues, has any and all information a customer could want, and looks engaging and consistent.


This is the single most important reason to keep website maintenance on your radar, particularly if your website is storing any form of customer information. If you are using a website building platform like WordPress or Wix, you must ensure that you are installing regular software updates and security patches. It can be easy and attractive for hackers to find and target websites that have sat dormant for too long.

Corporate Image

It’s becoming more and more simple to create a website that looks well-designed and professional. There is an expectation for a professional website from professional companies. If your website doesn’t deliver on the promise of professionalism, your customers will often go elsewhere.

Your Sanity

Your website is a very important element of your business. If it is up-to-date and running smoothly, it can be a valuable support and asset. If it is not in a good state, it can cost you dearly. Once you are behind on your maintenance needs, it can be quite the process to bring the website back up to speed. Sometimes, if your maintenance has been ignored for too long, it is easier just to scrap everything and rebuild from the scratch.

Do yourself and your business a favor by staying on top of your website. This will repay you with simple ease of mind.

Keep up with Trends in Design and Technology

The sleeker your website is, the more you’ll convince potential customers that you are their ultimate choice. If you’re staying on top of your website maintenance, you’ll also have the opportunity to be an early adopter of new website technology that will help the back-end run more smoothly. If you’re installing software updates regularly, you’ll be able to take advantage of new features that install along with the updates.

You’ll also be able to tweak your design to stay on top of the latest website looks. It’s far more tempting to employ a company with a polished and modern website than one that looks like it hopped on a time travel device from 2003.

How Much Does Website Maintenance Cost?

There are different cost expectations based on what your website is used for, the size of your audience, and how much content is hosted. We’ve discussed the different pricing brackets below.

Small Personal Blog

A small blog typically does not have a lot of traffic and has very few needs. This can be hosted on a blogging site like Google Blogger with no costs whatsoever. Or, it could be self-hosted using a platform like WordPress with low monthly costs stemming from domain name renewal and hosting service.

Medium-Large Sized Active Blog with a Wide Audience

If you have a blog that is bringing in an income with an active audience, you will likely want to be self hosted with some customizations. This will require more frequent maintenance, updates, marketing and backups and a slightly larger monetary investment.

Company Website for the Purpose of Marketing Only

Similar to the medium-large size blog, this will need to be self hosted with a simple design template and limited content. It will be low maintenance for upkeep with with regular updates, marketing, and backups.

Large Customized eCommerce Websites

This will be a larger financial investment as you’ll need to be vigilant about website maintenance. You’re handling a lot of content, code customization, and customer data. If you do not have an IT team on staff, we would recommend finding a web maintenance package to stay on top of your website needs.

Custom Built Web Application

This will be your largest financial investment. Your web application was custom built from the ground up for a specific purpose and it needs to be in top-notch working condition at all times or your company will suffer. This likely needs a dedicated staff of developers keeping a close eye on the maintenance.

Paying for Website Maintenance Services: The Advantages

Now that we’ve established that website maintenance is a must for websites of any size, it’s time to discuss the advantages to employing someone else to do that maintenance. You can, of course, take on these tasks yourself, but it will save time and stress to pay an agency for several reasons.

  • You’ll be hiring a team of experts who take care of these tasks every day. They know what to look for and what to expect.
  • You can focus on other areas of your business that need your attention.
  • Hiring an outside agency is cost-effective and can scale with your company. Your package will reflect the needs of your company.

Determining If You Should Buy Website Maintenance Packages

There are several elements that go into determining whether you should purchase a website maintenance package.

  • The size of your website
  • The purpose of your website
  • How much of your website is customized content
  • How quickly is your business growing?
  • How much experience do you have with website maintenance?
  • Is your website currently out-of-date?
  • How much time do you have to dedicate to website maintenance?

If you’ve read this whole article, you probably have a good idea if maintaining your own website is something you are currently capable of. If your website is simply sitting and taking up space on the internet, you should absolutely consider purchasing a website maintenance package. Your website should be a tool that is supporting and helping your business grow. It is a living and breathing entity that deserves your time and attention in order to fulfill its potential.

Let Us Help You

At Team Debello we offer reliable and affordable website maintenance packages with no long term contracts. We offer SEO, hosting, security and updates, backups, support, and peace of mind.

Ask yourself honestly whether you are keeping your website in good health and consider contacting us. If you were to drive a car miles every day without regular tune-ups, you wouldn’t expect it to work for you long-term would you? Your website is the same. . But don’t worry, We’ve got your back.

5 Email Marketing Benefits for New Businesses

Why Email Marketing Is Crucial For Businesses

Google: Moving Links Around On A Page Won’t Boost Your Search Rankings

John Mueller of Google said that by just moving a link from one position on a page to another position on a page – you likely won’t see any ranking boost from that action. He said on Twitter “I wouldn’t assume that you’d get a boost out of just moving links from one part of the page to another part though.”

Sure, moving links around from a usability perspective might make sense. But for SEO purposes alone, it probably won’t make a huge difference in your rankings.

There are probably exceptions to this, like having a link in your footer’s legal disclaimer versus your body content – that probably is a bigger change from Google’s perspective.

4 Simple Marketing Rules that Drove $370 Million in Sales

These four simple steps can help you ensure your sales and marketing efforts are successful instead of a waste of time and resources.

Define your audience

Who are you targeting? Are there specific roles or titles you’re going after? Do these people come from a certain industry or companies of a specific size? Maybe you have decision-makers at 100 targeted accounts you want to engage. Or perhaps it’s a specific age group you’re trying to reach.

Whatever you’re marketing or selling, you need to clearly define who your audience is as much as possible. Without that, you’re bound to fail.

Target them with a specific message

Generic messaging is never effective. I’ve seen many marketers be indecisive about which value proposition they should focus on. Instead of being laser-focused about one core benefit or use case, they try to do five different things. However, this leaves your audience distracted and confused about what to focus on.

Other times, inept marketers will just opt for a generic message that vaguely describes everything. But this just leaves people bored and uninterested since it doesn’t apply to any specific pain point or desired outcome.

Instead, make your message as specific and simplified as possible. Focus on one core benefit or pain point, and try to think about a common use case for your prospective customers.

Test and measure to see what works

Effective sales and marketing are always data-driven. I personally recommend always testing multiple variants whenever running any campaign. It’s important to measure the right variables, though.

With outbound email campaigns, for example, you can look at email deliverability (how many emails bounced versus were successfully delivered) and open rates. But the most important metrics are positive response rates, as well as qualified appointments set. I also like to analyze the entire sales funnel to see which emails drove the biggest deals or fastest closes.

Keep iterating to stay effective

The hustle never ends. Marketers and salespeople who get complacent fall behind fast. Even if you had a really successful ad campaign or email template one day doesn’t mean it will keep working for you in two months.

Markets change. Your customers’ needs change. How your competition is targeting your prospective audience will also change and evolve. Eventually, everything gets stale and ineffective.

You must constantly be testing and analyzing data in order to stay on top and keep ahead of trends.  If you don’t, your efforts and your business can quickly become obsolete.

Google Link Spam Update Is Here

Google said it began rolling out a new algorithm update for Google Search named the link spam update. This update “is even more effective at identifying and nullifying link spam more broadly, across multiple languages,” Google wrote. It will roll out from yesterday, July 26th, over a two week period or so.

So Google writes this long blog post named “a reminder on qualifying links and our link spam update.” The whole blog post is mostly a reminder on what types of links is against Google’s webmaster guidelines. There is more of an emphasis on this blog post around links with a “commercial nature.” But it goes through best practices, affiliate links and how they should use nofollow or rel=sponsored, it talks about sponsored and guest posts, and more.

Then Google announces at the bottom of the blog post the new link spam update with this paragaph:

In our continued efforts to improve the quality of the search results, we’re launching a new link spam fighting change today — which we call the “link spam update.” This algorithm update, which will rollout across the next two weeks, is even more effective at identifying and nullifying link spam more broadly, across multiple languages. Sites taking part in link spam will see changes in Search as those links are re-assessed by our algorithms.

Some points here:

  • Link Spam Update is the name (not with a date, like Link Spam Update July 2021)
  • Started Monday, July 26th
  • Will take two weeks to roll out
  • Global and multilingual update
  • Nullify spammy links but not penalize them (just not count them versus not penalize the site)
  • Ignoring links will feel like a penalty
  • Nofollow is fine, you do not need to use rel sponsored
  • Google won’t say how much this will impact the search results

So if you see a drop in your rankings over the next couple of weeks, it might be related to this link spam update. Was this related to what we saw over the weekend? I am not sure, but when I was writing it, I thought, wow – the black hat link builder types of communities are noticing this much more than others. Again, Google said it started rolling out on Monday and what I wrote about was spotted on the previous Friday and Saturday.

In any event, I’ll keep an eye on the SEO chatter and let you know what I see with this update. Right now, the chatter and tracking tools are not showing much. At least not yet… Stay tuned.

How to Set the Right SEO Goals with 3 Examples

As SEOs, we tend to generalize goals because there is so much outside our control. “We can’t promise results.”
The problem is that without a clear vision of what a win is, we’re unlikely to achieve results at all.

The same is true if we set vague and arbitrary goals.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to set the right SEO goals using the SEO goal pyramid.

  • What SEO goals are
  • Why SEO goals are important
  • How to set SEO goals
  • 3 SEO goal examples
  • What are SEO goals?

What are SEO goals?

SEO goals are specific and measurable objectives that you aim to achieve over a period of time. Each goal should contribute to the purpose of SEO: reach more prospective users through organic search and turn them into customers.

Why are SEO goals important?

SEO goals are important because they bring focus and clarity to your strategy by providing a clear target. If you don’t have SEO goals, you’re shooting in the dark. That’s never a good idea because you’re unlikely to achieve something unless you aim for it.

How to set SEO goals

Marketers often make the mistake of setting arbitrary SEO goals like “get more traffic.”

The main issue with this type of goal is that it completely disregards the what and the how. What are you going to do to make it happen? How are you going to get there?

Here’s how to use it:

  1. Create an outcome goal. This is the thing you want to achieve and the timeframe you want to achieve it in. Think of it as the tournament you’re trying to win.
  2. Break the outcome goal down into performance goals. These are smaller goals that each contribute towards the outcome. Think of these as the individual matches in the tournament.
  3. Break performance goals into process goals. These are even smaller goals that are 100% within your control. Continuing with the soccer analogy, this is who you’re going to play and where you’re going to play them.

The idea is to break things down into stepping stones to make your overall goal more achievable. As you complete process goals, you’re well-positioned to meet your performance goals. As you complete your performance goals, you’re likely to achieve your outcome goal.

Let’s take a closer look at what each step entails and create our first framework.

1. Create an outcome goal

Your outcome goal should directly align your SEO efforts with company goals, so ask yourself:
What SEO outcome contributes towards the company’s broader goals?

Looking at mission statements, frequently asked questions in meetings, etc., can help answer this. If you get stuck, ask your boss or client.

Whatever you do, don’t fall into the trap of saying “get more traffic.” While getting more traffic may help the company achieve its goals, it’s far too broad. Your outcome goal needs to be SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.

So, a better goal than “get more traffic” would be to “rank in the top 3 for [high-value keyword] in 6 months.”

This goal is specific and relevant because ranking for [high value keyword] will increase revenue. It’s measurable because you can track keyword rankings with any good rank tracking tool, such as Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker. It’s achievable because you already assessed keyword difficulty. And it’s time-based because you specified the timeframe.

2. Set performance goal(s)

Performance goals are the goalposts you set for yourself, so start by answering the question:
What short-term wins will most likely get us to our outcome goal?

You can have one or multiple performance goals. What they are will depend on your outcome goal and bandwidth. Just be careful not to fall into that same trap of setting arbitrary goals like “increase backlinks.” This may help you achieve your outcome, but it isn’t SMART. There’s no way of knowing when or if you’ve achieved the goal.

Continuing with our example outcome goal of “rank in the top 3 for [high-value keyword] in 6 months,” a SMART performance goal might be to “get 40 high-quality backlinks to the page within six months.”

It’s specific because we’re aiming for a certain number of backlinks.

It’s measurable using the referring domains graph in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer.

It’s achievable because it’s realistic. There are tasks within our control that will get us one step closer to achieving the goal.

It’s relevant because we know backlinks are a ranking factor, and there’s evidence that our target page is underperforming in terms of backlinks.

It’s time-based because it has a set ending point of six months.

Most importantly, achieving this performance goal will help position us well for achieving our outcome goal.

3. Set process goal(s)

Process goals are measurable actions that are 100% under your control. It’s where you answer the question:
What will I need to do to achieve our performance goal(s)?

Continuing our example, we have an outcome goal to rank in the top 3 for keyword “x” within six months. And we have a performance goal to get 40 high-quality backlinks to the page.

What will we need to do to get 40 high-quality backlinks to the page within six months?

Let’s say that we plan to run a ‘skyscraper’ campaign. If we get a 5% conversion rate on average from our outreach emails, we can work backwards to create a process goal that will put us in an excellent position to achieve our performance goal.

Let’s do the math:
40 backlinks / 5% average conversion rate = 800 emails
800 emails / 6 months = ~133 emails/month

So our process goal is to send 133 ‘skyscraper’ outreach emails per month for six months.

3 SEO goal examples

Because your SEO goals should align with company goals, I can’t say precisely what SEO goals to set. Your industry, how established your brand is, and the competitiveness of your niche all factor into the equation—among other things.

But what I can do is walk through a few more examples to get you comfortable using the SEO goal framework.

  1. Increase organic share of voice by 20% in 12 months
  2. Increase organic engagement rate by 10% in 6 months
  3. Achieve $10,000 in sales from organic traffic in month 6

Example SEO goal #1: Increase organic share of voice by 20% in 12 months

Search engine optimization is a highly competitive form of marketing. Essentially we are all vying for a spot (and attention) within a limited field of space.

You may hear your boss or clients saying, “just crush the competition.”

What does this mean? How will this be achieved? What determines whether or not we are successful?

“Crush the competition” is far too broad.

Using the SEO goal framework, you can turn “crush the competition” into a specific, measurable goal.

The first step is to align SEO efforts with company goals. What outcome contributes towards the company’s broader goal of “crushing the competition? In this case, something like “increase organic share of voice by 20% in 12 months” would be a SMART outcome goal.

It’s specific because we’re specifying a percentage in a timeframe—not an open-ended goal.

It’s measurable using the Competitors Overview report in Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker.

It’s achievable because 20% in 12 months is far from a ‘pie in the sky’ proposal.

It’s relevant to company goals because it’s essentially our site’s organic search visibility compared to competitors.

And it’s time-based because we specified a timeframe.

Now for the second step: setting performance goals.

Remember, this should also be a SMART goal. To keep things simple, we’ll set just one: “win 50 featured snippets for high-volume tracked keywords in 12 months.”

Featured snippets are pieces of information that generally display at the top of search results for a search query. Getting more featured snippets is a simple way to get more SERP visibility and clicks.

Here’s how to find the best featured snippet opportunities:

  1. Go to Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker
  2. Select your project
  3. Choose the Overview report
  4. Filter for keywords with featured snippets that you don’t rank for
  5. Filter keywords where you rank in positions 2–5
  6. Sort the keywords by traffic volume from highest to lowest

You’re in the home stretch now. The third and final step is to break out performance goal(s) into process goals by outlining the how.

Because it’s often possible to win featured snippets with a simple on-page change, a process goal would be to “make on-page changes to 50 pages to increase our chances of winning the snippet.” We can measure progress by tracking the number of owned featured snippets in Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker:

Example SEO goal #2: Increase organic engagement rate by 10% in 6 months

You may be thinking user engagement is a CRO metric. But remember, Google’s own SEO Starter guide says, “any optimization should be geared toward making the user experience better.”

Historically, SEOs measured engagement using bounce rate and time on page. These are poor metrics to use because they often don’t align with user behavior.

For example, let’s say that you sit down to read a ~2K word blog post. This website says that even a slow reader would get through that in 20 minutes. If you close the browser as soon as you’re done, that session would technically count as a bounce.

Luckily, Google Analytics 4 has a more robust metric we can use to measure UX: Engagement rate.

Engagement rate more accurately measures whether a user interacted with your website or left, so a good outcome goal would be to “increase organic engagement rate by 10% in 6 months.”

It’s specific because it specifies a percentage and timeframe.

It’s measurable using the User Acquisition report in GA4

It’s achievable because there are things within our control we can change to impact this metric.

It’s relevant because we want to improve UX, and engagement rate measures this more accurately than bounce rate or time on page.

It’s time-based because we specified a timeframe (6 months).

Now for the performance goal(s).

Let’s keep things simple again and just set one: “increase the number of unique user scrolls by 30% on low scroll pages that have high-value to our company.”

To find the pages where we need to improve UX, we can check the Engagement Pages and screens report in GA4, filter to organic users, and view the table by unique user scrolls.

Given our performance goal, our process goal may be rewriting introductory paragraphs on low scroll pages so that more people are sold on the article and stick around to read it. Again, this can be measured manually.

Example SEO goal #3: Achieve $10,000 in sales from organic traffic in month 6

Making more money is the ultimate goal of SEO. To stand the best chance of this happening, we need to convert the vague goal of “make more money” into a SMART outcome goal like “achieve $10,000 in sales from organic traffic in month 6.”

This goal is specific because we’ve specified the amount and timeframe.

It’s easily measurable with Google Analytics.

It’s achievable because our hypothetical site isn’t particularly seasonal and is already doing ~$9K/month in sales from organic—so this is only an increase of ~11%.

It’s relevant because, again, making more money is the ultimate goal of SEO.

It’s time-based because we specified a timeframe.

Now for the game plan: performance goal(s):

Keeping things simple and setting just one performance goal again, we’ll go for “increase organic traffic to high-value pages by 20% in 6 months.”

The simplest way to find “high-value pages” is to ask which products are the most profitable for the company. Consider the cost of production, cost of shipping, rate of returns, etc.

Measuring whether we meet our performance goal is easy enough in Google Analytics. Just head to Behaviour > All Pages, compare periods, segment by organic traffic, and look at the entrances metric:

Finally, the process goal(s)…

I can’t outline exactly what the process goals will be as these will vary depending on what type of product or service, search intent, business resources, etc.

Here are just a few examples of actionable process goals that may help increase organic traffic:

  • write product schema for target pages
  • optimize products in an organic product feed
  • optimize all images on the target pages

Because process goals are tasks that you or your team carries out, completing the goal is measured manually using your personal project management style.

For example, if the process goal is to optimize all images on every high-value page, we would manually check that each image has an optimized file name, descriptive alt text, and meets file size requirements.

Final thoughts

Setting SEO goals may seem like an impossible task, but a strong framework is all you need to get started.

If you stay on track and complete your process tasks, you have a good chance at meeting your performance goals. When you meet your performance goals, you are very well positioned to hit your outcome goal.

Success is in the details.

How Does Geofencing Technology Work?

If you’re pleasantly surprised with the local ads you’ve seen lately, geofencing technology could be to blame. Competitor geofencing is a marketing strategy that has taken businesses by storm.

Geofencing technology allows businesses to target their most qualified audience by simply providing virtual boundaries. When target customers step into that boundary, they activate ads or push notifications for a specific business — enticing potential customers within that boundary to visit a storefront.

It sounds like a story straight out of a science fiction magazine, but it’s actually real life — and more and more businesses use the technology every day. Geofencing technology can be used on Facebook, with PPC ads, and so much more.

But how does it work?

In this post, we’ll take a look into the world of geofencing technology and talk about how it can work for your business.

What is geofencing technology?

A location-based marketing strategy, geofencing technology uses GPS signals to determine when a target customer enters a boundary.

Businesses set boundaries around locations where they want to target customers near their physical locations, and they can be set up virtually anywhere.

Geofencing is an extremely granular marketing strategy that allows businesses to target customers based on where they are in relation to that business. Typically, businesses set up geofences around a particular business, specific event, or even a conference. It all depends on who the business wants to target.

To provide a geofencing example, if a business has a sale, and they want to let potential customers know, they could set up an automated text message for when that customer enters the geofence.

If there is a specific event that attracts potential customers in your target market, you can set up a geofence around that event and target attendees with your ads, push notifications, or text messages.

What is a geofence?

When a business decides to use geofencing technology, it means they’re looking to specifically target an audience within a certain boundary.

That boundary is completely invisible and is created using GPS technology. It’s easiest to image when thought of as a fence because on a GPS map, that’s what it looks like!

How does geofencing target my specific audience?

Geofencing targets your most qualified audience by serving them ads for your products and services when they step inside your geofence. Those advertisements could take the form of push notifications, text messages, or PPC ads served in a web browser.

Example of geofencing with push notifications

Let’s say that you’ve just opened a women’s boutique and created a shopping app to go with it. When users download your app and you also have a geofencing campaign, you can opt to serve them push notifications when they’re in your area.

A push notification is a message that appears on your smartphone screen via an app — but the app doesn’t have to be open to receive push notifications.

For example, if you’re having a sale on jeans, and someone with your app walks by, a push notification will appear that lets them know about your promotion.

Example of geofencing with text messages

If you obtain your customers’ contact information, including their phone number, you can target them with text messages, too.

If you’re using geofencing technology, you can send an automated text message to your customers when they’re in your geofence location.

It could be to let them know about a sale you’re having, what’s new in your store, or just reminding them that they’re close to one of your locations.

Example of geofencing with PPC ads

A typical PPC campaign is a great way to reach target customers. Platforms like Google Ads offer location targeting, which is similar to geofencing — just without the virtual boundaries.

Ads work very similarly for geofencing — except the ads become available when a potential customer physically crosses into one of the geofences.

For example, let’s say you own a seafood restaurant. A couple walks down your block, and they’re in search of the best crab legs in town.

You know you’re one of the few seafood restaurants in the area, and you want to target the keyword “crab legs” in your ads.

Your restaurant uses geofencing technology to place a box around a three-block radius in every direction from your location. This means that your ads are served to patrons who search for keywords that you target while they’re in your vicinity.

However, just because you target specific keywords in your campaign doesn’t mean that your customers will automatically see your ads. You first have to determine how much you’re willing to pay when someone clicks on your ad that targets a specific keyword, and if it’s less than your competitors, your ad won’t be visible to passersby.

So in short, geofencing serves ads to your target customers within your invisible boundary — if you outbid your competitors for a specific keyword.

How accurate is geofencing?

To ensure that geofences are as accurate as possible, the technology utilizes a combination of GPS, cellular data and Wi-Fi data.

In environments where cell phone towers and Wi-Fi routers are everywhere — urban environments provide a good example — the accuracy of geofencing can reach anywhere from 100 to 200 meters.

In rural areas where there aren’t as many towers or Wi-Fi hotspots, accuracy can reach a few hundred meters.

Keep in mind that geofencing will always work best when you enable a smartphone’s Wi-Fi enabled and activate GPS services.

How expensive is geofencing technology?

Many businesses are quick to adopt this new form of marketing, but one of the first questions they have is “how much does it cost?”

Being that geofencing is a newer strategy to the market, it’s difficult to put an exact price tag on the service. Not to mention, every agency is different and tends to charge different amounts for services.

However, there are a few things that can help you determine how much a geofencing campaign will cost your company.

How much do you want to pay per month for ads?

If you’re opting to use PPC ads for your geofencing campaign, you’ll need to decide how much you’re willing to spend on ads per month.

If you’re targeting keywords that are more specific and long-tail, you’ll likely pay much less than you would if you want to target more general keywords. That’s because there’s a much higher concentration of general keywords, which means more competition and a higher cost-per-click.

A good estimate for monthly ad spend for a geofencing campaign is anywhere from $1000 to upwards of $10,000, depending on your industry and competition.

How many business locations do you have?

The cost of your geofencing campaign can also fluctuate depending on how many locations your business has. If you have five main locations that you want to target with geofencing, you’ll pay for each of those locations.

That being said, the fewer locations you have, the cheaper the campaign.

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