Elvin Web Marketing shares some insights on local small business advertising. Check out our interview to learn more about their company, along with tips for success.
1. Hello! Please tell us about yourself and Onlinemarketinginct.com?
I started the 21st Century as the finance manager for a mid-size US Post Office. In 2003 I left that position and started a financial planning practice, specializing in the financial needs of local small business owners. The 2008-2009 market crash wiped out many of my clients and much of my business. I closed the practice in 2010 and started Elvin Web Marketing.
- What inspired you to launch this company?
Working with local small business made me aware of the disadvantage many of them faced in the digital world of today. The financial crash and running the financial planning practice during it left me in a dire financial position. Becoming an online marketing expert served the dual purpose of starting a business with very low overheads and serving the people I most like to work with, local business people.
- Your company prides itself on focusing on “local small business” (great!). Can you tell us more about that?
Local small business owners built America. They are the grunts that do the day to day tasks that keep our economy going. They supply gas at the pump, a hot meal at a reasonable cost and the parts that go into products larger companies sell. They are unappreciated, taken for granted and misunderstood. My goal is to help them thrive in a world and an environment that most didn’t expect nor understand. Many SBO’s are too busy to try to comprehend the internet and how it works. I am there to help.
- You also have a book out, “Online Marketing Fundamentals: Local Business Edition”, please tell us more about it?
We try to write articles that our audience and client base will find educational, interesting and useful. We realized that it would be just as helpful to put the ideas of the individual articles in a single place as kind of a reference tool for them. Hence the eBook.
- For anyone who doesn’t know, what is white hat SEO, and what are some of its main benefits?
First white hat is not black hat. Black hat involves trying to game the system. Black hatters use automated tools, weak and worthless or unrelated links, keyword stuffing techniques and other processes to rank sites quickly, with little effort or cost. Think of them as the “Give me a $1000 and I’ll make you a millionaire” salesman.
These techniques worked for a while and use of Google search started to drop. Google started fighting back against the pretenders with algorithm updates such as Penguin and Panda. Black hat websites started dropping hundreds of slots on search pages. Penalties for black hat sites can be significant and hard to overcome since the updates.
White hat SEO follows clearly defined rules set by Google that get websites ranked at the top of search pages. White hat strategies take a while to have an effect, we tell our clients 3 to 6 months on average. But once a website is at the top of a search page, staying there is much easier and there is almost no chance of penalization. We have clients who we haven’t worked with for some time still coming up on page one for many keywords in many localities. White hat SEO is neither cheap nor quick but the results are exceptional over time. While their algorithms are different, a website on the first page of Google will usually be on the first page or Yahoo or Bing as well.
- One expert marketing tip.
Remember the C’s, content and consistency. Google wants to see the same name, address and phone number across the web. Occasionally, businesses move. Updating online profiles is not something they consider so over time the web can show multiple address and contact information for the same business. This hurts SEO. Make sure the content on the website is fresh and up to date. If there are links on your website, check them on your website to make sure they still work. Broken links are bad for SEO and don’t show a business in a favorable light.
- Please share some of your future goals.
We want to be the go to agency for businesses operating in a local universe. We work hard to keep our overheads low so the smaller guys out there can afford us. Our goal is and will always be to help our clients make money. If they aren’t making money off of the results they pay us to provide, we are failing in our job.