Progressive Website Maintenance

Our Blog

One Sunday evening I sat down after a long day of yard work and house cleaning.  I contemplated the fact that yet another weekend had passed, and I spent it doing work.  Weekends are supposed to be for resting and doing things to enrich your lives, not work.  I do that every day of the week.  That was the day I vowed to start a progressive cleaning schedule and take small segments of chores and perform them throughout the week.

I take 20 minutes and vacuum the floors one evening, and then I am free to relax.   In the morning I may collect all of the trash in the house and take it out to the garbage.  That night I tackle another chore.

Long story short, I have not only regained weekends to do what I want, I have a cleaner house and better-looking yard.  The best part is it stays like that all week.  No more last minute rushing to clean up before a guest stops by.  Through teamwork my wife and I get a surprising amount done for a couple both working full time demanding jobs, and we have the weekends to spend time together not cleaning.

So what does this have to do with websites?  After regaining control of our house and free time, it was then that I realized I could do the same with my productivity time at work.   A website can be systematized like my house.  If a website is broken up into tasks, you can take small chunks and progressively make changes. Instead of doing a complete overhaul, you make small changes on a consistent schedule.  You may update the news one day, then update a small part of your SEO strategy the next.

Search Engine Optimization actually works best in a progressive maintenance cycle. Instead of shocking the search pool by making large changes all at once, you make small changes here and there and see how the search engines react.  If an SEO strategy does not pan out, you have lost traction on just one page, not the entire site.

By beginning a a progressive website maintenance schedule, you will have a cleaner site that is much more dynamic and fresh.  You will get into the habit of seeking out errors and inconsistencies as you break your site down into smaller chunks.  Major design changes will be a much smoother transition when the time comes.  You will drive your users to revisit your site more often to see ever-changing content.  This will give you the opportunity to target more conversions, and in the end you will have a much more successful business.

Cornerstone Media Group, Inc has maintenance plans tailored to allow you to do just this. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you regain control of your productivity and put your website onto a progressive maintenance plan.

Should I or Shouldn’t I?

Our Blog

With the Search Engine Marketing industry in North America generating more than $10 billion annually, most marketers know that search needs to be a part of their plan. What they seem less certain about, however, is SEM management – in-house, or outsource all SEM campaigns. How do you determine what’s best for your organization? Here are some questions you might want to ask:

Do you have, or can you get, the necessary personnel for a solid search effort? Effective SEM management of campaigns require a broad range of skills—from copywriting to programming.

Do you have someone who can dedicate the time to keep up with the constantly changing rules, trends and behaviors of search? Google, for example, releases small changes to its search algorithm weekly, and large changes monthly. Being aware of these changes can have a significant effect on results.

Can you afford the personnel you need? You can expect to pay an in-house professional $85,000/year; plus, you’ll need to fund other hiring, managing, benefits, equipment, and ongoing training.

Would a hybrid plan work best for you? A good solution might be to use an outside firm to develop a 12-month plan, and execute it using in-house resources, he suggests.

Our Point: Explore the “in’s and out’s” of search. Before you engage in your next campaign, research your SEM management options. In the end results matter most, not who is providing them.

It’s Time To Go Organic


According to comScore, Americans conducted 11.5 billion searches in June 2008, 61.5% of those searches using Google. This is living proof, if we still needed it, that marketers should not only be investing in paid search, they should be optimizing their sites to be picked up in unpaid, organic search results as well. The following tips will help you harness the power of organic search for your marketing efforts. The key? Freshening up your content:

  1. Pick good page titles (each one unique) that include keywords relevant to the target audience. Search engines look at these first to determine what the page is about.
  2. Be smart about URLs. Because the URL is how search engines track and manage your company’s reputation online, it’s best to have your own domain rather than to use a free one.
  3. Start a blog. If you run a blog correctly, you are updating content on a frequent basis—and search engines love fresh content. Also, blogs are magnets to links.
  4. Leverage your PR program. Make sure there are links that lead back to your Web site in all your press releases, and in online articles written about your company or products.
  5. Use social media to build links by contributing to conversations in online communities, groups, blogs and networks where your audience hangs out. But never give a sales pitch.

Our Po!nt: It’s time to freshen up and go organic! Competitors can outbid you for paid search listings, but by using a few smart tactics like the ones above, you can gain real power over organic results.

More Words Are Now The Key

Our Blog

It appears that a new trend is rapidly gaining ground in search methods being used by people conducting product research via the search engines.  Hitwise has revealed recently  that search queries on all major search engines are starting to use more and more words. In a recent study, the measurement firm found that when people type in words to search they are typing four or more words at an increasing rate to find what they’re looking for.  Hitwise found that searches using five words are up 6 percent, while those using eight or more words have risen by 22 percent. Overall, longer search queries are gaining traction to the point that they have increased 10 percent over the past year of tracking.

It appears that using one- and two-word search queries is dropping in popularity. Two-word queries are down 5 percent, while one-word searches dropped 3 percent. Searches using three words have stayed the same in terms of frequency.

“This is an interesting trend, and it could be interpreted in a variety of ways,” writes Frederic Lardinois in a ReadWriteWeb post. “This could mean that a growing number of users [are] finding less value in the search results they get from relatively unspecific, short queries. It could also indicate that users are becoming more sophisticated in how they structure their queries when they are looking for very specific answers.”

You need to take note of this since those that use four or more words to define their search are looking for a specific product or service to solve their problems.  Be sure that you use three, four and five word phrases as part of your SEO strategy so those that are qualified and ready to do business can find you.  The real advantage is that your comp[etition will not be using this technique!

As always we welcome your thoughts and comments on keywords and boosting SEO.