Instagram Stories Vs Snapchat
Instagram Stories Vs Snapchat

Instagram Stories vs Snapchat for Business?

Instagram just launched a new platform very similar to Snapchat called Instagram Stories. Like Snapchat, Instagram Stories allows you to post short videos and photos to your Instagram followers that will self delete in 24 hours. The format is almost identical to Snapchat but with less filter options. For business owners, this new feature breaths new life into your Instagram account by allowing you connect with your followers in a more casual format than posting to your profile. In this video I discuss the pros and cons of the two platforms.

From our testing we have noticed our Instagram Stories posts are being viewed by 10% of our followers, which is a much better conversion rate than Facebook.  Another great feature is it keeps business owners from having to build up yet another social media account by combining Snapchat features onto Instagram.

How to Use Instagram Stories for Business

Research had suggested that over the last few years the amount of Instagram posts had dropped by almost 50%.  The reason was that your Instagram profile is usually your best content, and many users were afraid to post unless they had a really good photo or video.  Instagram stories gives business owners to share behind the scenes and low-quality content to their followers that otherwise would be unseen.  Now, your Instagram profile can be reserved for your best images and videos, while staying connected with your followers daily through Instagram Stories.  Many have criticized Instagram for copying Snapchat, and I agree that's what has happened here, but nevertheless this is a great tool for business owners.  Snapchat developed the best system for capturing quick and spontaneous content and Instagram capitalized on it.  For example, if you own a restaurant you could post short videos of your kitchen, bar, or dining room throughout the day giving your followers a behind the scenes perspective.  Video production companies can use Instagram Stories to showcase behind the scenes of their video shoots and adventures.  Small business owners can stay connected with customers by revealing hot discounts and specials on Instagram Stories and nowhere else.  This tactic would help you build a larger Instagram following and increase brand loyalty at the same time.  The possibilities for business owners is endless and it's up to you to decide the best approach for your niche and company.

New Instagram Features and View Count

Another great feature is the ability to see how many people have viewed your story.  Plus, Instagram now gives you the ability to see who has viewed your story.  One interesting thing we found was that the people who viewed our story were not the same people who like our photos.  Data suggests a large amount of people scroll through photos and videos on Instagram but don't actually engage with the post.  Unlike the Instagram feed where you can like or comment on photos, Instagram Stories can only be viewed.  The user does have the option to send you a private message, but nobody else viewing your feed would see the comment.

Instagram Stories vs Snapchat for Business Marketing

Recent data has suggested that Snapchat is the fastest growing social media platform in the world.  Unfortunately for business owners, Snapchat makes it hard to grow your following and connect with customers.  I believe this new Instagram update will bring a lot of people back to the platform who had become discouraged.  For me personally, I'm done with Snapchat for business and will be focusing the bulk of my social media efforts on the new stories feature.

Portland SEO Services

a picture of seo

According to new statistics, more than 8 Billion dollars will be spent this coming year on SEO services.

What does this mean? Well, if you are a business owner and you do not have a professional SEO helping your business grow then this likely means that your competition does and will eventually pass you in rankings if they hire a good company.

This might feel like you are getting pigeonholed but that is if you look at it negatively. You might feel like you now have to get search engine optimization, but this is good, not bad. Your return on investment for the long term will far outweigh any short-term costs of a professional company. If you are paying a company $2,000-3,000 a month for six months to help grow your business then you are investing $12,000-18,000 into your business. A lot of people will see that as big number and frown, but let us continue with an example of a client we have.

My friend (we will call him Tom) hire us purely because he trusts me as a long time friend. We ran numbers on his business and Google actually showed no traffic that searched for his construction company in this small town that he lived. We decided he needed to at least be above his competition  in case Google was wrong. Only 3 months into our 6-month term, he landed a job due to our work for a $800,000.00 project. Now he makes about 10% on something like that, so he will make $80,000.00 for spending roughly $16,000 with us. Do you think he is complaining? I'll mention that he landed another new client soon after that one as well. Google is always correct in traffic estimates.

Now you may not have a construction company that moves a high dollar client or product, but the same applies for a restaurant just in smaller terms. We have dealt with a few restaurant owners and generally know that the lifetime value of a client is around $100.00. Typically we can help generate (even in a small town) 20-50 new leads a month. If you only landed 10, that is an added $1,000 a month of lifetime value. If we are charging $16,000, then it will take you 16 months to pay it off.

Tell me, what investment can you tell me about right now that will give you 100% ROI in 16 months? Let's just be even more conservative and we will say 20 months. You can't give me one! If there was one, then everyone and their mom would be in it. The people who can grasp this simply by the numbers don't ever question the price. Most people get excited about a 10% a year return!

The key is, that what we do doesn't stop working when we are done. Most clients don't want to stop once they see the results and keep us on to keep targeting other keywords.

Search engine optimization and online marketing is a huge wave and you are either going to ride it to the bank or get crushed by it and still have to do it down the road at a higher cost.

Website Seo 101 For Beginners
Website Seo 101 For Beginners
Follow these simple tips to improve your websites organic search engine optimization.

Website SEO Tips For Startups

Search engine optimization can either make or break your company. Studies show that your potential customers search Google first when deciding where to eat, what to buy, and the services to use. The websites who position themselves on the first page of Google will naturally see an influx of new customers into their business. The public trusts Google rankings and will generally base major purchasing decisions on them. In order to rank well in Google, it’s critical that you set up your website and domain name correctly in the beginning. Follow these 7 simple steps to increase your chance of success dramatically.

1. Choosing a Company Name:

Picking your business name is the most crucial part of the entire process. There are a few different ways to go about naming your company, and one should first consider your end goal when picking a name. If you are looking to target only one specific city or geographical region then it’s best to pick an (EMD) Exact Match Domain. Examples of Exact Match Domains include Bend Video Production or Portland Dry Cleaning. These types of names are good for getting off to a quick start, but can limit growth possibilities down the line. The second option is to choose a branded domain name. These names don’t include a geographical region or city in their title. Branded names tend to be more difficult to start originally, but over time gives you more possibilities. Examples of branded names are things like Winzy Group or Blue Box Company. These names work great for companies that have a long-term growth strategy because they will be appropriate in any city or area. The downside is that your name doesn’t tell the customer exactly where service is. For each type of name, there are pros and cons and one should spend a great deal of time in the beginning deciding the future direction of their company.

2. Picking a Domain Name:

The next step is to choose the correct domain name. This will depend heavily on what you decided for your business name. If you chose to take the EMD route with a name like Bend Video Production then your ideal domain name would be BendVideoProduction.com. From a search engine optimization standpoint this is superior because Google can decipher what the website is about simply from the URL. If instead you choose a branded name like Winzy Group then the ideal domain name would be Winzy.com or WinzySEO.com. I would avoid using .Net or .ORG domains and stick with a .COM. If you are looking to spread awareness for your business through word of mouth, a .COM domain name will be easier to communicate to your customers.

3. Strategic Keyword Planning:

Once you have chosen your company name and purchased your domain name it’s time to plan your attack. Keyword research is an essential part of the search engine optimization process. Ranking #1 for a term that has no search volume will not yield results for your company. Instead, you should identify specific keywords that will convert into paying customers. These keywords could include your trade name and a city or geographical identifier. If you are looking to rank for national level keywords then this could simply be a trade or specific thing you're selling. For example, if you are looking to rank for video production in Bend Oregon the highest volume search term would be “Bend video production.” Remember, people search like they would speak, so don’t make assumptions on search volume. There are many different keyword planning tools available, but I would start with the Google Keyword Tool. Spend a few hours researching keywords before you move forward. I would suggest choosing 2-5 long tail keywords to target in beginning. As you have success with these keywords then you can expand your target group.

4. URL Structure and Planning:

Bend Video Production.” Next, Google will analyze the sub-URL to determine what a specific website page is about. For example, if your URL is Winzy.com/Portland-SEO-Company then the keywords “Winzy Portland SEO Company” will be given the highest power. If you are looking to rank for a specific keyword your best option is to put those keywords in the URL structure. The URL structure is not the only ranking factor, but it does play a huge roll. When designing your website you should carefully consider your URL structure in your design. After you have identified the most profitable keyword combinations for your business, the next step is to incorporate those into your sub-URL pages.

5. Social Media Strategy:

Social media is quickly becoming one of the bigger ranking factors for websites. Social Media shows Google that your website is relevant and prevalent around the internet. Large portions of business owners avoid social media because they fear that their business will be criticized or they don’t know how to put out quality content. The real power in social media comes from the back links you can place in your profile to your website. Our strategy is to set up 30 or more social media accounts and link them to your website. These links from high domain authority properties will help establish trust in your brand. Social media is also great for driving traffic and engagement to your website which is another major ranking factor. If your business can produce interesting content then posting on social media can help. Google is measuring this engagement and factoring it into their ranking algorithm.

6. Keyword Density and On Page Strategy:

Google carefully measures keyword density and content quality when determining your Google rankings. The latest studies show that your target keyword should not be mentioned more than a few times in your content throughout your page. Keyword stuffing and other old school SEO techniques no longer work and will result in poor rankings. Website owners should strive to have 500-1000 words of unique quality content on any page you would like ranked in Google. Furthermore, by adding original images and YouTube videos you can further increase your rankings. Remember, when adding images, Google is not just reading the text below the image, but is actually reading the image title when you uploaded it to your website. This is a great opportunity to get more relevant keywords into your website. Another often overlooked technique when targeting local search queries is to geo-tag your images with location data. This will give Google yet another signal that you relevant for your geographical region. Next, you can embed YouTube videos in your page to help index your page quicker and create more engagement from you views. Google owns YouTube, therefore, any website that has a YouTube video embedded is most likely going to receive better rankings.

7. Off-Page Strategy and Anchor Text:

The biggest ranking factors for Google are the ones website owners cannot control. When a website links to your site this is considered a backlink. You can think of a back link like a vote, and the more votes you have the higher your website will rank. One must also consider that not all backlinks are the same. Links from bigger and more trusted sites will have far more ranking power than those from new and untrusted sites. In fact, It can actually hurt your site to have other websites with low trust linking to you. As a good rule of thumb, you should only seek out links from sites far bigger and more trusted than your own. Google puts a large amount of weight on the quantity and quality of links coming to your web page and the anchor text used in the links. Anchor text is when a website links to another through the use of words and not a raw URL link. For example, a raw URL link would be www.Winzy.com and an anchor text link would be “Winzy SEO Company.” The anchor or keywords used to link to a website have a huge impact on search rankings. Website owners should seek to have a diverse website anchor text with a little redundancy on the exact keywords you're looking to rank for. For example, if your target keyword is “Bend video production” then the best strategy would be to have your top 2-3 highest power links contain that exact anchor text. The problem being it can be very difficult to get high-quality anchor text backlinks. This is why many website owners choose to higher a search engine optimization company to acquire such links.

The proceeding 7-steps are the foundation of website SEO. All 7 concepts are taken into consideration by the Google Algorithm and your website is ranked accordingly. There are potentially thousands of other ranking factors, but these are the primary ones. In most small to medium difficulty local markets, this could be enough to rank your website near the top of Google. As you move into more difficult keywords it will take these as well as many other tactics to get a #1 Google rankings.

a picture Oregon Web Solutions Logo horrid color seo portland

Oregon Web Solutions is a Portland OR based company that specializes in search engine optimization. You might have found us by searching “SEO Portland” in Google. Our philosophy is that ranking your company website and Google Business Listing organically is the best ROI on your marketing dollars. Spending money on traditional advertising mediums such as radio, TV, and print campaigns can have a positive effect and provide your company increased exposure. The problem with these traditional advertising videos is once your budget has run out the advertising stops. When running a Google Ad Words PPC campaign you run into the same problem, and as you budget dries up so do the clicks to your website. Rankings your website organically in Google on other big search engines provides results long after the payments end. In most cases, If you stay active on your website then your search engine rankings will stay consistent, and in some cases even improve. Another factor to consider is that most web searchers do not click on paid listings, and will instead opt for the natural listings. There are two main reasons for this:

Organic listings provide better results for searchers and better conversions for website owners.
Searchers are naturally distrusting of advertising in general and will avoid paid listings if possible.

This is why we believe the best use for your marketing budget is to focus on rankings your website naturally instead of paid campaigns. Achieving organic search engine rankings is not an easy task and that’s why it’s best to hire an experienced search engine optimization company. Computer literate small business owners that wish to attempt this undertaking should be forewarned that on occasion improper SEO work can cause more harm than good. If you choose to go it alone you should follow these rules to insure that you get the best results.

  • Only add high quality, relevant, and unique written content to your website.
  • Embed YouTube videos and maps into your pages to keep Google happy.
  • Build all social media platforms with content and backlinks to your homepage, even if you don’t plan on posting
  • regularly on the site.
  • Links to your homepage should only come from high Domain Authority Websites
  • Low-quality links should be avoided, or be filtered through social networks or tier two Web 2.0 sites.
  • Provide link bait for high domain authority sites by adding unique content consistently.
  • Use YouTube videos to add high DA backlinks, increase exposure, and drive traffic to your network.
  • Engage your social media followers to encourage loyalty.
  • Sign up for Google Web Master Tools to analyze your website.
  • Tag your posts, photos, and videos with descriptive language to let the Google bot know what your website is all about.

There is a basic rundown of some basic search engine optimization techniques that will help your website rank better. This is by no means an all-inclusive list, but instead a simple rundown to get you started. It’s important to note that it’s better to link to your site with a few high-quality links then thousands of low-quality spam links. I hope this helped get you thinking about  the importance of organic rankings. If you would rather hire an experienced SEO company to rank your website in Google then contact us at Oregon Web Solutions.

Search Engine Marketing Portland
Search Engine Marketing Portland
Oregon Web Solutions SEO is now offering Youtube SEO video ranking services. We have over 15 years experience building and ranking videos and websites. After ranking thousands of Youtube videos for our companies and our clients we have decided to offer this service to the public. Usually companies would have to pay for the full SEO package in order to receive our Youtube traffic and ranking package. For a limited time, we will rank your video for your desired keywords and send 1,000 real viewers. If you follow our instructions, this will boost your video rankings permanently and will help increase the domain authority of your Youtube channel, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and your primary website. The techniques we use to rank Youtube videos are 100% “white hat” and Google friendly. We have successfully ranked Youtube videos for thousands of happy customers. Plus, Youtube videos can drive thousands of new customers to your website and increase your online exposure. The other benefit of improving your organic search rankings through our Youtube Video Ranking Service is there’s no recurring fees but you will your benefits will continue year after year.
For a limited time get our Youtube Video Ranking Service at the introductory offer of:

$249.00

This is a limited time introductory offer and will expire soon. If your ready to improve your Youtube video rankings then contact us today!
This is a great, cost effective way to get your foot in the door for search engine marketing work. Sometimes the initial cost of SEO work is a lot for smaller businesses to take in, so giving you affordable options is what we wanted to give people to experience how much we can help your business grow and thrive online. I can talk numbers all day, but sometimes you just need to see for yourself and this is a great way to do just that. Contact us and let us know if you have a video you would like to get started with.
Oregon Web Solutions SEO Portland Logo
Oregon Web Solutions SEO Portland Logo

So if you go to google and type in “SEO Portland Oregon” Who pops up? I love that test as we pride ourselves in being at the top of our game. You want someone who can show results not just talk the talk. Actions speak louder than words. We have a target and we hit it or we don't quit until we do. I would think that you would want someone with that kind of tenacity on your side.

We hit road bumps like anyone else, but we don't give up and we fix whatever scenario that might be. We strive to make things great. We would be deluding ourselves to say everything goes perfect all the time. Just like life it doesn't. So what does your company do for you when things do go bad. Do they curl up, or fight on? We would like to think that you want a fighter in your corner and that is us. We pick one profession per one city/town and that is it for that profession. So if you are a dentist in Portland Oregon and we work with you, then we no longer will accept a dentist for all of Portland. That should be common practice, but I know that there are companies that will take on anyone and everyone creating inner ranking wars which they profit from the whole way. That is not how we work.

When we give a timeline for your project (which is based on ranking difficulty) but let's say 6 months which is average. We need that full 6 months to rank properly. To push things fast will only get you into trouble. Google now has a standard 30 day period where any work we may do won't even show rankings wise for 30 days. In the past, this process was a little bit faster, but it is purposely slowed down to prevent spam and black hat ranking tricks. Both of which could damage your site for good if done wrong. This is why we stick with the tried and true white hat techniques that take longer, but give you a more long-term power the will be around for years to come. We all want speed, but at times there is a cost to moving too fast.

If you live in another state, we would still be happy to work with you. Where you live these days isn't even a issue when it comes to SEO. Web conferences, phone calls and Skype make everything possible from anywhere in the world. That being said, there is still an easy plane flight to anywhere you need to go. If you would still like to work with someone in your local area, let us give you a few pointers to help out. Take your city or biggest neighboring city and type that with SEO “Portland SEO”, and see who comes up. the top 3 will all be strong. If you would like to weed it down further, add more like “Portland SEO Company”, or include the state “Portland Oregon SEO Company”. Normally a top company will be in the top 3 for all of these. You can feel safe if they are. Not to mention, they are outranking others in their field so you can be sure they are good at what they do.

If you would like to look into more with us, click out Discovery Form, and fill it out to your best ability. This will give us the information we need to give you a more accurate analysis of your website and a plan for future growth. We will send you a custom video analysis that will go over your site and how we can help improve your rankings.

We are excited for the future and look forward to working with you.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to call us or write us an email at:

[email protected]

Or call (503) 563-3028