Search Engines – A Reality Check
There’s a pervasive myth among Web site managers that merely submitting your Web site to hundreds, or even thousands, of search engines will result in thousands of new visitors. That is just not true.
Over 90% of the search engine traffic to most Web sites comes from just 8 to 10 major search engines and to get more than a trickle of traffic requires some individual, manual, targetted, smart, effort. So following the sheep and submitting automatically to 1200 or even 350,000 search engines is simply a waste of time and money – no matter how cheap. Do not be fooled by the junk mail vendors and the hype! Concentrate on the main game. The shotgun and hope method just does not work!
Search Engines Australian Chart
Furthermore, when someone queries a search engine for a keyword related to your site’s products or services, does your page appear in the top 10 matches for all the most relevant keywords for your site or does your competition? If you’re listed but not within the first two or three pages of results, you will never get a visit, no matter how many search engines you submitted your site to.
There are two obstacles to solving this problem. First you have to know the many factors that will move you into a top 10 position. It is NOT simply a matter of including as many keywords (eg in META tags) as possible in your HTML code! Indeed, this is often counter-productive as this reduces the keyword density.
Once you learn how to achieve a top 10 search position, you have to monitor your progress – a crucial step, and it normally takes many weeks or months to get it close to being right. This also assumes you have some worthy content, preferably relevant body text and some worthy sites that link to you. Reputation on the Internet is just as important as in the ‘real world’, it is just measured differently by the search engines, ie by the number and quality of links to your site. And circumstances change, including the way search engines rank their sites and individual pages, so you need an expert monitoring the changes from time to time in order to maintain your position.
WPS staff have many years of experience working with the search engines and Internet marketing in general. We can provide you with distinct advantage. We will:
- Develop Web pages designed to rank near the top of search engine results, ethically and effectively.
- Analyse your existing Web pages and give plain-English advice on how to improve them.
- Submit and re-submit your pages to the major search engines quickly and effectively.
- Report your positions on each search engine for each keyword you are targeting.
- Track the number of visitors to your site, where they came from, and what keywords and search engines they used to find you.
- Talk to the people that will make the most effective use of all the relevant (to you) means of marketing your site.
- Leverage you existing advertising material and marketing channels.
- Very few Web designers have the very specific SE knowledge or software to perform such detailed analysis, and so do not offer such services or do so in a superficial or unsustainable manner. WCR employs dedicated specialists in SEO and Web Marketing and they are fully devoted to these tasks and little else.
We guarantee the quality of our work. Indeed, we go much beyond this and state from the beginning that we have no fixed contracts or conditions. If a client wishes to terminate our services for any reason, at any time, they just have to give us 30 days notice.
Looking forward to getting qualified visitors to your Web site!!…
WPS specialises in addressing the people issues associated with IT or business and marketing driven change. Our entire focus is to improve SEO performance through quality website management. At WPS we respond with solutions to support organisational change to keep pace with online marketing innovation. Forces of change include:
Search Engine Optimisation system implementations
- internet marketing technologies
new online marketing technologies such as social media
business search engine optimisation
new product launches through social media
online marketing compliance
SEO training is not just about substituting online marketing modules for classroom training. A lot of organisations are finding that blending their own mixture to suit is easing the transition.
E-learning for SEO consultation and online marketing is now a major force to be considered in learning and development planning for business growth. Organisations that already have large and effective internal SEO departments are reviewing their programs to see which ones can be converted for online delivery. Others are suggesting that e-training is a natural vehicle for training in web-based marketing activities. At this moment of heightened interest, something called “blended learning”, or b-learning, is being mentioned more and more frequently.
This article takes a look at some of the possible meanings of the term blended learning, and why its moment has come.
Who is e-learning for?
When an organisation considers e-learning for its marketing workforce, it is typically driven by several of the following factors:
The workforce is spread across multiple locations, whether in a single city or across continents
There is a need to contain growing marketing costs of outsourced web development
Scheduled SEO training is not meeting increased demand for certain needs
On-the-job SEO is unmonitored and may be inconsistent
Releasing staff from their daily jobs for one or more days of training presents difficulties in planning
Learners have different needs that are not necessarily met by the necessary structure of a face-to-face course
There is a need to respond to changing training needs more rapidly than is currently possible in house
These are all good reasons for management to be considering e-solutions for SEO and the marketing needs of a corporation, and such solutions can deliver the benefits of just-in-time training, standardised and available at all locations, with certification of participants if required. The typically high costs of development for online programs is mitigated by the growing availability of ranges of generic materials in “soft” areas such as management training, client relations, occupational health and safety, and equal opportunity.
Trainers, however, may be much more reluctant than management to adopt an e-learning model, and learners even more so. Such reluctance can derail the best intentions, so we need to look carefully at the concerns of both of these stakeholder groups.
At call marketing trainers, firstly, put a high value on the intangibles that are not accounted for in the normal measures of training effectiveness. These are likely to include their own interaction with the learners and the opportunity to get to know them, building learner confidence, supportive networks created between learners, active feedback (in both directions), and the process of assimilation that takes place during a two or three day course.
Learners’ concerns are more likely to revolve around any uncertainty they may have about how to use the required technology, an unwillingness to be monitored remotely, the lack of an opportunity to connect with people who can give them ongoing support, and of course boredom if they are presented with too much information in an undifferentiated online format.
So an effective e-learning approach has to tackle these concerns, and this is where blended learning comes in.
The elements of the blend
Blended learning is simply a flexible approach to learning delivery that recognises the benefits of delivering some training and assessments online, but also uses other modes to make up a complete training delivery service. These other modes may range from classroom sessions to mentoring arrangements, or the support of a subject matter expert in the same office or area.
There are as many blended learning models as there are organisational challenges. You can blend your own mixture to meet the learning needs of the workforce, the monitoring and planning requirements of Learning and Development, and those management issues listed before. Combinations of e-learning and other modes can be developed to match the available technology, the distribution of the workforce and the availability of trainers.
Here are some typical examples of blended learning – you may recognise some of them from other contexts.
Course model: Learners complete a series of online modules that make up a course for certification. They are at remote locations, so they submit their assessment tasks by email to a tutor. An online forum provides for discussion of topics and shared feedback between learners and tutor. Periodically, if possible, they may meet as a group, ideally starting with a session where they can familiarise themselves with the format of the online material. If this is not possible, they may be “buddied” with another learner in their region and talk to their tutor by phone. This is a model often used by universities for distance learning.
Reference-based learning: On-job training is supplemented by procedures manuals deployed on an intranet. Learners are assigned a regular program of online or written assessments to confirm that they are acquiring the knowledge they require during their induction and follow-up. The required knowledge includes the ability to navigate the intranet and locate relevant information. The author of the manuals also maintains contact with the learners either directly or through the training department to ensure that the documents provide the necessary support for the job.
Pre-assessment: Learners of varying abilities complete an online pre-assessment to ascertain their level of knowledge in a certain area. Those assessed at a lower level may be nominated for a further online course to fill some of the information gaps. Once they have gained this pre-qualification, all the learners can be brought together in a face-to-face session that provides a forum for them to discuss their knowledge and practise their skills. This structure provides more targeted learning experiences for all levels of experience, and also gives meaning to the online tasks by making them stages in a process that will be practised and reviewed in the face-to-face session.
Blended learning along the lines of these examples may result in better outcomes than either a traditional classroom model or one that wholly embraces online delivery.
The concept recognises and where possible incorporates the intrinsic value for learners of face-to-face interaction and discussion with a trainer, other learners or a subject matter expert. At the same time, existing technologies are deliberately used to create and foster relationships between people with common interests when they are unable to meet. Such continuing support is rarely provided to participants as a planned component of classroom-based training.
Blended learning solutions establish and provide a continuing framework for new networks within the organisation, while also delivering the training to meet management’s goals of efficiency, availability and relevant data capture.
In the context of operational training, the costs of creating an online course may be prohibitive, both at initial development and in ongoing maintenance. A blended approach allows the organisation to utilise its existing knowledge base of manuals and other procedural resources, and to obtain efficiencies by a much smaller investment in, for example, updating manuals and putting them on the intranet. The procedural material is supported by the e-learning infrastructure to schedule, prompt and monitor course progress, and complemented by online assessments that can easily be developed in-house.
The blended learning concept is timely because its initiatives make an entry into the e-learning culture less daunting for all participants. Reference-based training can help to limit the costs of course development, trainers can develop communication and support arrangements that meet the needs of the workforce, and course participants are actively supported both in their work and in coming to terms with the technologies.
The intrinsic value is that an imaginative application of blended learning principles can result in wide-ranging organisational benefits, with individuals using their learning networks to become more active in process improvement, in mentoring new recruits, and in knowledge sharing.