Speaker 1 (00:20):
Are you a lady boss making 50 to a hundred thousand in your business, and you’re ready to break through that six figure barrier.
Have you done a great job of creating a nice life as the ultimate gig master, but no, your inner CEO is calling you to greater Heights. You’re in the right place. If you want to create and implement solid fundamentals in your business without sacrificing fun.
I’m Pam Ivey, I’m certified in small business management and I concentrate in the areas of training and certifying real estate assistance, coaching and mentoring entrepreneurs in online business, marketing growth and profit acceleration. And I take men and women business owners aged 40 plus two bucket list destinations around the world for a month at a time to work, explore, and live in community.
And I’m Jane, Garee known as the sales strategist for the non sales person. And I work with business owners who want to increase their conversion rate, shorten their sales cycle and have more impact and influence with the work they do all while having more fun with selling.
Hey everyone. And welcome back to the flourish and grow to CEO podcast. You’re in for a special treat today. Some may be groaning. Some may be saying woo, because we’re talking all about SEO with Eric Seropyan did I say that right?
You did it perfectly. Thank you. Woo.
Welcome Eric. We’re so happy to have you. I just want to tell the audience a little bit about you and then we’ll jump right in. Okay, great. So Eric has a long history in promoting small businesses online. Eric grew up and lives in the south bay area, which is south bay, Los Angeles. I made the mistake of San Francisco. So we get that clear and he’s an SEO and SEM expert. And founder of this is my south bay.com. Eric’s expertise is unique in that he specializes in both international and hyper-local SEO, helping founders, entrepreneurs, business leaders, and small business owners make sense of searchability and marketing on the web where it can help us understand the rapidly changing world of search engine optimization and search engine marketing, the value in SEO and SEM for small businesses and startups, how it varies between major corporations and small businesses and how it’s changed, where it’s going and what to do. So they’re not left behind. I love it so much. Welcome. Welcome. So great to have you here. Thank
You. Thank you for having me. I love the description. It’s a, it, you nailed it
Super well. Let’s start off with a super basic question, but I know if, if you can answer this, um, you know, really simply I think people are really going to catch on. So what is search engine optimization or SEO?
Of course. So, uh, SEO is short for search engine optimization. And basically what it is is if you think of a search engine, the big one being Google, uh, being Yahoo, et cetera. And so if you are sitting in front of your computer or you’re on your cell phone and you’re on Google and you type in something and you’re searching for it. And so what happens is you have the search engine results page that comes up with the results of your search, whether it’s a mechanic or a restaurant or whatever the case may be. And so usually the top two or three listings, it’ll say sponsored at the top of the page and at the bottom of the page, you’ll have a couple of them that it will say sponsored as well. Now the fat middle there that there’s 10 on a page is what is called organic search results that you can’t buy that real estate that is there because Google thinks that it’s a good match between the user and the website and the keyword that they’re searching with. And so you get that listing from Google essentially for free. And it’s a game changer for small businesses and mid-size businesses when you get that traffic coming in from Google consistently for your service or product. So search engine optimization is the task of optimizing and enticing, Google to give you that free traffic to give you that listing on that, uh, on that particular keyword, that series of keywords that you want to rank for.
Perfect, oh my God, that made it so easy. And you know, we’re always talking about attract with flourish and grow because we want to attract new audiences to us, have new people discover us. And we do mention search engine optimization. It’s free. I mean, it takes work. Absolutely. It’s not an overnight thing, but it is a really important component of attracting people to us. So can you maybe explain a little bit about what keywords are and how you use them?
So when we’re onboarding a client, what we do is we have some tools that we use. Um, there are anywhere from average $50 a month to $250 a month, you can get to SCM rush AA, Trex, MAs SpyFu, there’s, there’s a, a bunch of apps out there. So what we do when we’re onboarding a client is we want to do, um, a competitive, competitive analysis. So we want to take a look at competitors that someone has and see what they’re doing. We can take a look to see what these various apps we can see, what keywords the competitors rank for. What’s the average monthly volume for that keyword and certain metrics that will help us decide if we want to go after those keywords. And secondly, we look at our client that we’re onboarding and take a look at the keywords that they’re ranking for already and, and, uh, see if we want to go higher.
So what happens is a lot of the traffic, you know, when you search for something on Google, you really don’t go past the majority of people that are searching. Don’t go past the first page. Definitely not the second page. So after looking through 20 search results for a particular keyword, uh, you kind of move on. And so if someone is, if a website is ranked number 30 and it’s a keyword that we’d like to rank for, then we put that on the list of keywords to target. So we could take it from 30 to 10 or to five or a number one, hopefully. And so we put together a keyword strategy and that’s, that’s the first part of doing that is keyword research and competitor research. So
A keyword is sorry, I’m just thinking with flourish and grow to CEO, we would maybe thinking of keywords or a key phrase is grow your business to a hundred thousand dollars or does six figures.
Sure. You can do, uh, a good way to do it is because I have a lot of clients when we’re onboarding them that they take pencil to paper and they stare at the ceiling and try to come up with keywords and a good way to do it. A lot of times is to look at your competitors, your direct competitors, and see what they’re up to. And so once you start doing that, uh, you know, some of the keywords will work for your business and then some of the keywords that they have won’t work, but it’ll give you an idea for other keywords. And so that’s usually a good starting point. And also when you’re, you know, when you’re on your website, there should be the main category pages there that definitely you should, um, you should be ranking for. So if it’s grow, grow your business, for example, you want to make sure that you’re, uh, ranking for that, for that keyword. And
That actually would be a really tough one. Isn’t it? That example everybody would be going for grow your business.
So what happens is you find the lower, uh, a long tail keywords. Like for example, back in the day, I used to be a jewelry designer and I would be, uh, optimizing for the website. And instead of going for the keyword jewelry, we would go for keywords for men’s platinum diamond wedding bands. It’s very particular, but, and it gets maybe a hundred searches a month, but it’s very particular. We would have a landing page for that particular item and the conversions would be higher. Now, when you go after the keyword jewelry, is it watches? Is it pearls? Is it necklaces? Is it wedding rings? There are so many different categories, subcategories of jewelry that even if you’re ranked for it, which is almost impossible for a small business to just rank in the top 10 for jewelry, um, you, you don’t know what it’s about is it to repair a jewelry? Is it they want to sell their jewelry. And so you want to be very clear on, uh, the user, what their intent is when they’re searching for a particular keyword and be sure to keep that in mind when you’re creating content and tie Scougal to rank you,
Hey, lady boss, do you think like a CEO when your business starts taking off, you’re ready to scale up at this point, you’ve got to stop thinking of yourself as a solo preneur and start thinking of yourself as the CEO of your company. If you remain in the mindset of a one person operation, then you won’t be able to grow. You’ll never have the time, energy or expertise to do everything by yourself and your business. Won’t be the success that it has the potential to be. So are you thinking like a CEO take our free assessment to find out you can find email@example.com forward slash think that’s F L O U R I S H dot B I Z Ford slash T H I N K. Once again. That’s flourished.biz for slash think. All right, lady boss. Let’s get back to the show. Perfect. And I know Jane and I, you had us at not hello, but jewelry designer, right? Jane?
Yeah. So I’m the tech idiot here. I always struggle with technology. I’m like, well, I’m already over my head. What what’s that? What language are we speaking in terms of maybe like an actual old school visual, I kind of pictured this. If we were all at a county fair and all the little tents had whatever they were selling, popcorn shoes, jewelry, it doesn’t matter. But each one of those tents had a sign out on the front of their tent and the, the game would be who could come up with the most intriguing words that would catch somebody’s eye. Cause if you’re, if you’re physically wandering through something, that’s essentially what your eyes and your mind are doing is like, what, what words or what words are going to stand out? What words are going to stand out. So is that kind of the same thing? When we get on a search engine or Google and we type in cotton candy, it’s going to start popping up things that have the cotton candy in the, um, in the wording, right?
That’s correct. And so we’re, we’re trying to do a couple of things here. One is, um, we’re talking to two audiences. One is Google and one is when they click from Google and they come to your website, you’re talking in a different, you know, you have two audiences when you create content on your website. So, uh, when, when Google is drawing that data from your website, uh, you have to keep that in mind and you, you need to have the tags, the meta-tags and the meta-description, everything, uh, so that when your listing comes up on Google, there’s something enticing for them to click on, uh, the listing, you know, I’ll stick with the cotton candy example, uh, how to make the most delicious cotton candy, or we, we manufacture the, uh, a particular kind of cotton candy, or we do free shipping on cotton candy, something that’s gonna make the user click on that link to come to your site. Right? So one of the metrics that Google looks at is if people are looking at your listing and they skim over it and they click the person before you are asking you consistently, then it’s going to assume that what you’re offering is not a good match between the user and your website, and then your ranking is going to drop. So the description has to be something that’s engaging and enticing.
Yeah. When I w w so I have, um, a little bit of a background as a copywriter, and I would, it’d be funny whenever I got assignments, I’d say, no, no, I don’t. I don’t know how to do SEO, but if you have an SEO expert or person have them send me a list of words that they want worked into the copy, and that was a kind of fun. And B it really showed me the power of SEO ranking. So if I were writing about joy, for example, the SEO expert would send me that list of word, that platinum bands men’s wedding rings, um, tarnish free, you know, whatever they knew would catch the attention of Google. And then I had to work it into the copy. So there’s a real marriage between language or copy or content, and making sure that you can write the best copy or content in the world. But if it doesn’t have certain words or phrases, nobody’s going to find it. So you’re going to be reading your awesome copy and everybody else has never going to see it.
Exactly, exactly. I just Googled, uh, cotton candy. And, uh, it has cotton candy, floss, sugar, blue, raspberry, all these, uh, mentions of different types of cotton candy, because you only have, yeah. My mouth is watering also. No, you only have so much, so many characters to be able to exp uh, what it is that you’re offering, you know, nothing satisfies sweet tooth, quite like cotton candy, candy warehouses, your source, blah, blah, blah. Like it’s giving some kind of explanation what they do. And then hopefully, you know, if you’re interested, you go ahead and click on it and go over to their site and check it out. And these are organic listings that I’m reading off here. So these are, uh, you know, it’s kind of like Google is playing matchmaker saying that your, your, uh, what you’re searching for, I believe this website would be good. You know, these series of websites would be good for you. Go check it out. So it’s almost like Google is giving their seal of approval. Yeah.
And that’s a great analogy too, playing, playing matchmaker.
So we mentioned that you’re an SEO and an SEM expert. Can you explain the difference between the two Eric? Sure.
Uh, search engine optimization, uh, generally is, is the act of getting that traffic for free from Google. And so you’re not necessarily, uh, paying for it. So, um, it’s, you’re optimizing for, for that, uh, for that traffic coming in search engine marketing is a form of marketing that involves the promotion of a website through paid advertising. So Google ads, Bing ads, Yahoo ads, and things like that, where you’re, um, you’re, you’re getting the traffic by paying for it. You’re in the sponsored section,
Is that a really expensive endeavor,
More expensive every day as more companies are going online. So that’s why, what we try to do is for our clients, we want to create an online presence with their social media, with their website, with reviews, with, uh, content, with building a, uh, email list for, uh, potential clients that are wanting information and keep in touch. We do a monthly or quarterly email blast and certain things to kind of make our own community for our clients within the worldwide web. Because if you’re going to be constantly hunting for new business with Google ads, it’s getting more and more expensive every day. And probably, um, you know, five, 10 years later, it’s going to be even, you know, drastically more expensive. One of the reasons that we use Google ads for clients sometimes is that when we run as with Google ads, we can see what’s Google thinks of a particular keyword associated with our client’s website. So Google, when you set up a Google ads campaign, you have the, you upload the keywords in there, and then Google will come back and say, for this keyword, I give it a, um, ad rank five or ad rank 10 or zero. And so if there’s an ad rank, let’s say zero one or two, that Google is not even looking to sell you the traffic. It thinks that it’s not a good match.
Not enough people are searching for
It, right? Not necessarily. It, it basically means let’s say I have a website that I’m selling pencils. And I go for the key word jackets by mistake, or, or, you know, uh, on purpose, whatever my thinking was to do that. And so Google will, uh, spider my site, crawl through it and find that there’s nothing that I sell that is remotely close to jackets. So it won’t even sell me the traffic. So what happens is if we’re, if Google’s not going to sell me the traffic, they’re definitely not going to optimize me and give me the traffic for free organically. So I would just be wasting my time going through that exercise.
So it helps us a little bit too, so we don’t spend money on the
Wrong things. Exactly, exactly. So a lot of times what happens is, you know, people don’t want to buy traffic and spend all this money when they don’t have the, you know, they’re not going to convert. So what happens is sometimes the pages are tagged incorrectly or they need to go back and, um, work on the landing page for the particular keyword that they’re trying to rank for and things like that. So that gives us kind of a compass on, you know, what Google thinks or else, uh, the way search engine optimization works. It’s not like you can call Google and they tell you what to do. So you can get optimized. You’re kind of feeling your way around and looking at the analytics, I’m looking at the traffic coming in and the keyword ranking reports and trying to figure out what Google thinks of your websites associated with a particular keyword.
Right now, you mentioned something about Meda tags and meta description. Where do we find that stuff? How do we add that to say our WordPress website?
Sure. So on the backend of WordPress without getting too technical, um, when, when you’re uploading a page or you’re creating a blog post, there should be something on the backend that when you’re, um, setting things up, it’ll ask, you it’ll have boxes open. And it’ll say, here’s where you add the content. Here’s where you put the meta-tags, here’s where the alt image tag goes. Like, for example, if you have an image, Google, can’t read it. So you, you tell Google, this is a picture of a waterfall, um, in this part of the country. And so Google can understand what that picture is. And so there are places as you go down, uh, uh, the page creation, part of WordPress that you’re just filling in the forms. And there’s a tool that I use that’s called Yoast. And, uh, basically it gives us an idea. Um, it’s really geared towards the search engines to, um, guide us on building out a page.
And it’ll tell you sometimes, you know, Hey, you have, uh, three, uh, consecutive sentences that start with the same word. And Google’s not crazy about that. So you can change, you know, the sentence around a little bit, sometimes it’ll, um, you know, you haven’t mentioned the key, uh, the target keyword enough times in the body of your post. So it’ll give you some ideas on what to do. It’s not a exact metric, but it kind of guides you in a way that the reader will be, uh, you know, more enticed to continue reading. A lot of times, people forget, you’re supposed to break up the content because you go on a page sometimes, and there’s 5,000 words. And literally it looks like, it looks like just, it looks exhausting, max, your eyes, it just looks like one big blur. So it’s good to have breaks in the paragraph. Maybe have a picture in between, you know, several hundred or if it’s a 5,000 word, maybe every thousand you have a picture or a video or something to break things up, to make it a better user experience.
Exactly. Cause I think w we always want to be ranking in the search engines, but I think we really have to keep in mind that first and foremost, we’re writing for our audience.
And you mentioned a really good tool and it’s something that I use too. And for the listeners, there is a free version of it. You don’t have to pay for the pro it’s called Yoast, Y O A S T. And it, as Eric says, it gives you suggestions so that you can kind of shore your website up a little bit more. So Google likes it better. Is that a good way to describe
It? Perfect. So it’s, it’s, it’s not an ending than starting point, but it’s something that is making some suggestions for you.
Something else that I know that is really important for search engine optimization is backlinks. Can you talk a little bit about those?
So there are different kinds of links that you can have coming in. So one has, you can, um, submit on directories and you want to make sure that you submit on directories that are, you know, in the same vein as your business. So if I own a donut shop in Los Angeles and I get a link from a tire shop in Dallas, it’s not really gonna work, it’s not as powerful. So there has to be something, whether it’s geographically or whether it’s in the same, within the same, uh, type of business, it could be that, uh, you know, the two businesses are in the same business association or something. There has to be something tying the two businesses together. So if you rank, you know, you can go and you can submit your website and your business to online directories, a powerful and other powerful way to do this is let’s say, for example, I write a blog post about your company and inside of that blog post, I have a clickable link from, from my website pointing to your website. So that’s a very powerful link coming into, into your website. And the more websites you have pointing to your website, the more authority you’re going to have online in the eyes of Google. And obviously if you had a link coming in from me and you had a link coming in from Harvard or from NASA, obviously the power of that link is different. So not all links are created equal. Oh, that’s
An referral concept. So NASA says, you’re cool. That’s going to carry a lot of weight. Your next door neighbor is your cool, not as much weight.
Exactly. Yeah. So, and it’s good to have a mixed bag of things, you know, uh, it would be great if you could just choose between NASA and, you know, the white house or whatever, but, you know, realistically, those are difficult links to get. What you want to avoid is you want to avoid having a majority of your links that come in that are, there’s something called domain authority. That goes from zero to a hundred. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a hundred, but that’s the scale. And if you have the majority of your links that come in, that are zeros and fives and tens, even you want to have, you know, some that are, uh, you know, higher and it’s okay if some, some websites link to you and they’re a lower domain, what happens is just like how you hear stories of how people will go out and they’ll buy 10,000 Instagram followers for $50.
Uh, there are services out there that you can buy links and, you know, for $50 you could get a hundred or however many links. It is linking back to your site. Those links happen to be link farms where they’re usually zeros and ones. So you have to avoid that kind of stuff. Uh, you know, because it’s, it’s, uh, enticing for the marketer to get all these links and then to show the client, Hey, look, we got 50 links this month, but like I said, not all links are created equal. And when you have too many, when you have the majority of your links that are, you know, zeros, ones and fives, it’s actually going to do more damage than good. Anyway, you’re just shooting yourself in the foot when you do that.
Yeah. Cause you’re kind of letting Google know that you’re buying, it sounds like you’re you’re buying, or it looks like you’re buying if you’ve got a hundred zero or five links. So that makes a lot of it.
Yes. Google knows that something’s happening. Um, we’ve had this happen a couple of times now with clients where, uh, for whatever reason, somebody we assume their competitor, um, has gone and bought links and pointed it to our client without clients even knowing that. Yes, exactly. So we have tools that we keep track of that we see what links are coming in to our clients. And so there’s a way to tell Google, you know, we appreciate that these, uh, you know, you may, you put together a list on Excel and you submit it and you say, you know, we took Google, we appreciate these websites have linked to us, but we don’t know who they are. And we’d like to disengage, we’d like to disavow is the exact term. And so Google knows exactly, you know, but you have to stay on top of it. Otherwise, you know, some of these things happen. So
What I just learned from that whole run was number one, never buy your friends, which you shouldn’t anyway. And number two with the language in here, disavow, I mean, that’s kind of cool. That’s right. That’s right. So
We talked about the importance of links, but how do we get those links? And I know one really good way is guest posting. So, and having a bio with your link, that’s pointed back. So say Forbes, wouldn’t that be nice? Or what’s the other big one? Uh, yes. Forbes, Inc entrepreneur or something like that publishes one of your blog posts and your bio has your link in it. That’s pointing back to your website. That’s uh, has really, I know it’s called authority,
Authority, ranking authority, score, domain authority,
A place like entrepreneur in Google’s eyes would be highly ranked for business. So that’s what we mean by domain authority. So does trying to explain it for people, you know, who, who don’t hear these words all the time. That’s great. There are a lot of methods that you can use, but I know that guest posting is that, you know, guest blogging is a really good way to get some good, valuable, um, backlinks for you. Absolutely. That’s awesome. So can I find out which keywords my website ranks for
Sure. We can run up through some of the apps that I mentioned. So if I’m on, um, let’s say for example, right now I’m on SEM rush and I’ve mentioned them a couple of times. I, you know, I’m not promoting them. It’s just the app that I use. And so I can go, uh, and in the search box of SCM rush, I can put in the website address and it’ll spit out for me, the keywords that the website is ranked for what position they’re at and the monthly average volume of searches for that particular keyword,
Does Google provide that service? They used to have a keyword search,
Kind of, they have something on the, on the backend keyword planner. And it’s, it’s not as, um, uh, user-friendly or sophisticated as some of these other apps. But if someone wants to, you know, they don’t want to spend money on these apps, then there you can, they can start with the keyword planner, Google.
Perfect. Awesome. Well, this has been so interesting and enlightening Eric, where can people find you?
Uh, they can go to my website. This is my south bay.com. And if anybody wants to, um, if they have any questions on search engine optimization, or if they want to get a report on their competitor’s website or on their website and see what keywords they’re ranked for and opportunities and things like that, they can click on the book now button and schedule a 15 minute free consultation, and I will be happy to go over any of their questions and thoughts and strategies.
Super once again, thank you so much. All of Eric’s details will be included in our show notes. Of course, and this has been wonderful. So thank you so much for joining us, Eric, and until next time everyone keep on flourishing. Thanks everyone. Thank you. Well, that’s a wrap everyone. Thanks for joining us this week on the flourish and grow to CEO podcast. Be sure to visit our firstname.lastname@example.org. That’s F L O U R I S h.biz, where you can subscribe to the shows in iTunes, Stitcher, or via RSS. So you’ll never miss an episode. You can also find our show notes and resources there too. And while you’re at it, if you found value in the show, we’d love for you to leave a rating on iTunes, or if you’d simply tell a friend about the show that would sure help us out to now get out there and flourish.