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Category ArchiveGoogle for Business

Video Lab West, Sacramento Train Station

McClatchy Teams With Google, Opens Video Lab West inside Historic Train Depot

Video Lab West, Sacramento Train Station McClatchy unveiled its new collaborative space inside the historic train depot to a packed house of several hundred of Sacramento’s “who’s who,” from private and public sector spaces.

A long-time anchor in Sacramento’s downtown region, the Amtrak train station has been undergoing a 10-year revival. It is also home to the largest in-fill project in the United States.

McClatchy’s partnership with Google and Youtube is called Video Lab West. The 10,000 square foot development is designed to foster an environment committed to great storytelling using video. Emerging video technologies such as VR (virtual reality )and aerial drone videography are two areas the project is expected to push.

It’s an important part of storytelling that’s going to be big, but it’s also undefined and unclear from a revenue model and distribution standpoint, said Meghan Sims, McClatchy’s director of video products, who will be leading the lab.

The lab’s designers paid homage to the building’s rich and uniquely California history with roots dating back to 1863. The creative energy in the “history vs. high-tech,” environment is definitely promising.

McClatchy says that they intend to offer room for workshops, training and focus on working with fellows from outside the company.

Greg Taylor, the city project manager, said that the work has turned the once dilapidated and marginally usable old brick building into a modern structure. The entire project entails 25,000 square feet of office, restaurant and retail space just a hop away from the new arena and of course, Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor lines.

The rooftop terrace offers panoramic views and is sure to become one of the best places to decompress, recompress, network and socialize. Doors are expected to open late summer, 2017.

— — — —

Google Grants Sacramento

How-To Guide To Google For Nonprofits

According to Google, the tech giant has given $100,000,000 annually to nonprofits around the world in investments and grants every year since 2014. As a Google Partner, a big part of what I do at DC is to help nonprofits process their grant applications, setup their new AdWords accounts, install Google Analytics on their websites so I can analyze what’s working, what’s not and how to maximize clients’ advertising efforts with Google.

Organizations need more insights, not more data

Here is the outline of the process a 501(c)3 will experience when engaging the Google Grant process.

APPLY

The application process is a straightforward process. In late 2016, Google brought San Francisco nonprofit specialist, TechSoup aboard to review applications to the Google Grant system. Although the exra layer of security is more than what was required previously, it’s still a fairly simple action and should take no longer than 15 to 20 minutes to process. Click here to get started: https://www.google.com/grants/.

INSTALL ANALYTICS

Google Analytics is a very powerful application that users install on their website. If you’re using WordPress, there are some great plugin’s to make this process super simple. Here’s a full list of Google Analytics plugins for WordPress sites: https://wordpress.org/plugins/search.php?q=google+analytics.

This application will help you understand who is visiting your site, how they found the site, what keywords are being used and how frequently, when users visit, how long they stayed, what they clicked, and even more complex data depending on how diligently your webmaster or Google Partner setup your analytics system.

What Google Analytics does

  • Provide data on bounce-rates. If a lot of visitors to your site leave after visiting only one page, that’s going to be reflected in your analytics as bounce-rate. Poorly designed site with little relevant content are the most common cause of high bounce rates.
  • Helps webmasters identify new markets by providing detailed data on demographics.
  • Understand users’ behavior, (flow), with a graphical display. The more you understand what your users are doing on your site, the better you can arrange and create content and calls-to-action to heighten those actions.
  • Provide key data on trends. A good Google Partner can look at your site’s analytics and provide keen insights to trends. From day-to-day, week-to-week, and month-to-month, it’s critical to see the big picture and make adjustments to enhance your site’s engagement with users.
  • Identify traffic sources. One of the easiest and most useful metrics to understand with Google Analytics is traffic source. Whether it’s Facebook, or Twitter, organic or paid search – traffic sources is easily one of the most useful data sets that you should monitor carefully.

WRITE GREAT AD COPY and then some

Once you’ve been accepted into the Google Grant system, your organization is ready to run ads, for free. Sounds pretty simple, but this is probably the most critical part of your investment into this program. Even a well-written ad will fail miserably if you have not taken the time to do some homework. Here’s a checklist to ensure that your ads will be seen, even in a competitive market where some companies may be spending upwards of $10 per click (CPC); Google Grants limits your ad budget to $2 CPC, but not to worry. A savvy Google Partner or webmaster with Google AdWords experience can help you overcome this seemingly insurmountable hurdle.

  • Money is not the key to a great ad rank with Google.
  • Google ranks ads based on the ad content AND the page on your website that it links to.
  • Do not link ads to your homepage, unless the homepage has a call-to-action directly related to the ad.
  • Create custom pages that resonate well with the content of your new ad.
  • Create unique campaigns and test variations of ads with different keywords and negative keywords.
  • Do not max out your bid (CPC) from the get-go, start small and increase your bid incrementally over a short period of time.
  • Review your Google Analytics report every morning, at the least.

A nice and short presentation that puts all of the above into a perspective you can digest, easily.

Organic Google SEO Best Practices

You’ve got a website but it’s not ranking well on Google? This article is for you.

Google's SEO best practices for 2016

SEO by DC

Organic Search Engine Optimization is not tricky. Here’s a good definition from Wikipedia:

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine‘s unpaid results — often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results.

No SEO tricks – that’ll get your site penalized

Years ago, Google began installing software within their engines to filter websites they caught using “tricks and hacks.” Long gone are the days of “stuffing keywords,” or buying backlinks – to name a few “tricks.” Today, if you want your site to do well in organic search, you have to know the rules, follow them and then some. So, what are the rules?

The core SEO tactics you need to integrate into your site include producing original and relevant content, proper formatting and using natural language. Here are the main points Google shares in their publication – “Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide.”

Create unique, accurate page titles

Title tags let users and search engines know what the key topic of a web page is. As you can see, the title of this page is: “Organic Search Engine Optimization: SEO.” Notice that it matches the content.

Tags should be placed within the <head> tag of the HTML document. Create unique titles for all your pages. Pages that appear in search results will show the contents of the title tag. Words in the title are bold if they appear in the user’s search query. This will assist users recognize if the page is relevant to their search.

Using the “description” meta tag

The description meta tag provides Google, and other search engines, a snippet of the page’s content.  While a PAGE TITLE is limited to a few words, or short phrase, a page’s description meta tag should be a sentence or two, or even paragraph. Words in the snippet are boldewhen they appear in the user’s query. This gives the user clues about whether the content on the page matches with what he or she is looking for.

Use simple/clean URLs

Most web content management systems, including WordPress, automatically create page URLs that are frankly, gobbledygook. The good news is that most of them also provide an easy switch to turn “Greek,” into plain English. Using descriptive categories and filenames for your pages, posts, images and documents on your website; it not only helps you keep your site organized, but may lead to better crawling of your content by search engines. Visitors may also be put off by long and cryptic URLs and you can bet they won’t share that link if they won’t even click it.

The URL to any page, post or document shows in the search result in Google. If the words in the URL on a search result were used by the user, then they also appear in bold on Google’s search result(s), really helping boost the chance a user will click your link – see why it’s critical to produce great content? More info from the horses mouth is available here: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/76329

Make your site easier to navigate (Menus, Sitemaps and Breadcrumbs)

Your website’s navigation is like the table of contents of a book and even Google admits that they use a site’s navigation (sitemap), to put all the pieces together to help make sense of the big picture. In the last few years, breadcrumbs have become very popular. If you’re using WordPress, the option to install breadcrumbs is easily available to you.

A breadcrumb is a row of internal links at the top or bottom of the page that allows visitors to quickly navigate back to a previous section or the root page (1). Many breadcrumbs have the most general page (usually the root page) as the first, left-most link and list the more specific sections out to the right. ~ Google’s SEO stuff.

A site map is a page on your website that shows the structure of your website. Basically, it’s a hierarchical list of the pages on your site. Visitors can use this page when they can’t otherwise find content on your site they are looking for. Google will visit this page but they say, it’s mostly for users’ benefit, and we know we use them a lot around DC on big sites. They do come in handy.

Publish quality content

Content has always been king on the web, so it should come as no surprise that Google embraces this and has even gone on record stating that this is likely the most influential element of your website for great organic ranking on search.

Users know good content when they see it and will likely want to direct other users to it. This could be through blog posts, social media services, email, forums, or other means. Organic or word-of-mouth buzz is what helps build your site’s reputation with both users and Google, and it rarely comes without quality content. – Google.

Keys to good and basic search engine optimization

  • Write in plain English, unless you’re targeting a technical demographic
  • Keep your content organized, avoid “run-on pages.”
  • Create original content, copying will kill your SEO
  • Optimize your images: size, alt-text and descriptions all are used by Google
  • Use headings to help readers know what the topic(s) are about
  • Do not duplicate content – copy-and-paste from other sites

CT has been a Google SEO Specialist since 2006 and has managed several sites that generated millions of hits, annually in the Sacramento region. If you desire assistance in this field, please contact us.

 

Google Now Requires Mobile-Friendly Web Design, Or Else…

Google-MobileOn April 21, 2015, Google will begin removing non-mobile-friendly web pages and sites from showing up in their search results. This means that if a website doesn’t render nicely on a smart-phone, well, it won’t be seen in Google’s search results on smart-phones. Since half of all searches on Google are conducted from smart-phones, this is kind of a big deal.

You can check the status of your website’s “mobility,” or responsiveness on Google’s Mobile Friendly Test page.

If you need assistance, feel free to contact DC – we specialize in designing mobile-friendly sites that are guaranteed to qualify within Google’s new criteria.

GO MOBILE  with DC!

Our mobile-friendly sites can be built in Wix, Weebly, WordPress, Squarespace and of course, customized single-page layouts, and pricing starts at $400 and includes 3 months FREE HOSTING.

READ MORE on DC Founder’s LinkedIn Long Post.

 

Growing Your Business With Google

gpcdc


– REGISTER HERE –

WHO:  Deep Creatives and Google

WHAT:  A free and live event  called “Google Partners Connect.”

WHEN:  Wednesday, February 11, 9 a.m. PST

WHERE:  Sacramento but if you are not able to attend the fixed location, you can join us via our live stream, hosted on Youtube.

RSVP’s are required in either case.

What’s Google Partners Connect about?

You have a business.  You sell something, but you’d like to boost sales without breaking the bank. That’s where Google Partners can help. We’re certified advertising professionals with the knowledge and experience of running successful online advertising campaigns.  This event will review the essentials of growing a small  business using Google AdWords, Google’s advertising platform.  DC’s founder will follow up the 1 hour presentation with a 30 minute Q&A.

A well designed ad campaign can attain as much as a $10-to-$1 ROI.  How this is done will be outlined by DC at our Google Partners Connect event.

Attendees will receive special gifts from Google as well as vouchers to help you start advertising.   At our last event, we provided $125 in ad incentives for new clients.

Here are the speakers at the event:

Todd RoweManaging Director – Global Channel Sales

Leveraging Technology to Thrive
Todd will talk about how small businesses can differentiate themselves from their competitors through digital marketing.

Fred VallaeysAdWords Evangelist

Advertise your business online
Fred will cover how small businesses can navigate the web and expand their online presence through smarter insights.

DC currently manages Google Ad accounts with an aggregate annual budget of $50,000.

In 2012, Google’s Ad network generated revenues of $43 million USDs.  This growth would not be possible if it didn’t work, and work well.

Google reCaptcha

Google Humanizes Web Security

google-recaptchaSpam is a big issue for webmasters. Until now, there’s been one weapon to combat it called Captcha.  Google changed that today with their new product called RECAPTCHA.  Captcha has been known to be a bit difficult on the human eyeball and forcing us to make out twisted text and re-enter it.

Google is touting their new anti-spam product as a simplification of this process as such:

  • Tough on bots, easy on humans
  • Free service
  • Not just distorted text
  • Audio service for hearing impaired
  • Uses advanced risk analysis engine
  • Leverages human efforts to digitize text
  • Annotate images
  • Build machine learning datasets

All this, according Google,

helps preserve books, improve maps, and solve hard AI problems.

To learn more and install Google’s reCAPTCHA.

Google Partners Connect: Oct 15, 2014

DC wants your input about our hosted Google Partners Connect event held on October 15, 2014. Whether you attended in person, logged into the stream via Youtube or didn’t attend at all, your input helps us evolve into a better agency. We know that sounds vague and cloudy, but believe us when we say, your opinions matter to us.

The SURVEY

 

Google Partners Connect: Oct 15, 2014  re-broadcast: How to grow your business with Google AdWords.

Forwarding Email vs Fetching

I’m guilty of using the forward feature on my Cpanel.  But that’s going to stop because of the potential of being blacklisted for using this powerful and simply technique.  The proper method to have email sent to a “catch-all,” say your Gmail account is to use FETCH.

How to Set Up Google Mail Fetcher

To set up Google Mail Fetcher for an email account:

  1. Log into your Gmail account.
  2. Click the gear icon in the upper right corner of the page and select Settings.
  3. Click the Accounts tab and locate the Check mail from other accounts (using POP3) section.
  4. Click Add a POP3 mail account you own.
  5. Enter the full email address of the account from which you’d like mail fetched.
  6. Click Next Step.
  7. In the Password field, enter the password for the email address you provided.
  8. Select Port 110 for a POP3 connection. For a secure email connection, usePort 995.
  9. Click the checkboxes next to the options that best suit your needs:
    • Leave a copy of retrieved messages on the server
    • Always use a secure connection (SSL) when retrieving mail
    • Label incoming messages
    • Archive incoming messages
  10. Click Add Account.

After successfully adding your account, you’ll also have the option of making the added account a custom From address. This will allow you to compose messages in Gmail but have them appear to be sent from your other email account.

Google Shopping 101 – must upgrade by late August 2014

Notes from today’s Google Hangout by CT.

Streamed live on Jul 10, 2014

In the past few months our Shopping team has covered Merchant Center and Shopping campaigns. For this Google Partners HOA, we’d like to cover some best practices for Product Listing Ads to improve on the performance for existing campaigns. We’ll share tips and insights on how to optimize your ads by using tools such as the bid simulator or impression share.

This will be a live Hangout On Air with a Q&A. Ask your questions on the event page, or via the Q&A app in the Hangout to get them answered live by Googlers Nicole Premo and Chris Azalde

 

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For agencies in North America (required) we also invite you to join the Google Partners North America community where you can discuss tips and tricks for growing your business and making the most of Google products like AdWords, Analytics and YouTube – http://goo.gl/N3iIKQ

Agenda

  • June Recap
  • Shopping camp. optimized feed best practices
  • updated attributes
  • Adwords editor feature

Why change?

google best practice 1

How to transit to Shopping

  • Create Shopping camp
  • Segment inventory into prod groups
  • Pause regular PLA camp.

 Summary of takeaways

  •  upgrade to Shopping camps by late Aug.
  •  bid and budget based on relative retail value
  •  optimize for data quality and bidding effectiveness

 BEST PRACTICES

  • Product data is complete, fresh and accurate
  • Titles, descriptions and images are user-friendly.
  • Product type and custom labels are in good shape

 Product eligibility

  •  Ensure data feed is clean, fresh and accurate
  •  Provide all req’d and recommended attributes
  •  Align your data feed w info on your website
  •  Upload your data regularly (Content API or FTP)
  •  Submit your unique product identifiers:

  Attribute   Values

   gtin            Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs) include:
UPC, EAN (Eur), JAN in Japan, ISBN

   mpn           Manufacturer Part Number MPN – not SKEW

   brand         Manu’s brand name

 Be user-friendly, no stuffing!

  Talk to your customers in a way they’re familiar with.

Create glamour-shot images

 Show shoppers what they’re looking for.

Bid Based on your product group’s relative value

How to think about bidding on your prod’s.

Maximize efficiency on bidding

Organize your inventory w product_type

Make up whatever categorization system works for what YOU want to bid.

Client’s often reuse what’s used in their existing Ecomm system, but not tailored to SCM objectives.

Use custom labels for your own tagetable values

AdWord labels or groupings, Custom Labels are similar but more structured, and powerful.

Target sellers with high bids as BEST SELLER.  Define how to use each of the five labels and have clients’ input.

MORE:

 2014 Data Specification update

  • Update data feeds to new data feed specs
  • Allows us to send users’ directly to mobile site/landing pages.
  • Rules are same for mobile as standard. Items should be ON that landing page in either case.

is_bundle:  merchant defined, not manu. Camera+case = bundle. Previosly, no way to tell Google about bundles, now this allows a package deal. More info in help center. Only use bundle as a clear main item where CAMERA is main item, and case is secondary.

availability attrib: in stock is anything that can be delivered in a timely manner. Timely is determined by merchant. Custom couches might take 3 months, but electronics should be delivered within about one week. It’s about the standard in the industry for that particular item.

 Update data feeds to new data feed specs

New landing page policy, more at help/support

REVIEW to ensure familiarity on these policies.

USE white background, clear, pro-style shots.
This will have positive effects on sales.

Char limits are warnings thru Aug, then ERRORS in Sept.

UPDATE, UPDATE, UPDATE.

 AdWords Editor: 10.5 advertisers able to

  •   DL camps to edit offline
  •   mng bids and URLs of prod groups in bulk
  •   update promo text across ad groups
  •   bulk mng neg keywords

Q&A – personal notes.

Q It seems like most of my clients have to navigate into multi-store product listings to reverse engineer fields to get the right data into their feeds. Shouldn’t Google take the product name and auto-suggest these fields to save a TON of research time?

Q Should you have only one product per product group? For example, should you have a product in Bestsellers OR Mother’s Day? Or can a product be in both?

Q We update our feeds twice a day usually and have noticed ads being served with outdated data days later. There seems to be an alarming latency in updating the ad serving to reflect the latest feed info. Can you comment on this?

  Google Rep said this should not be the case. Google requested a ticket to address.

Q hi, is google shopping a good option for products like tradeshow displays or google adwords is a better route?

QMy company sells products that are built to order. These products can have very long lead times – 4-5 weeks is possible. What status do I use when submitting the items in my feed and Why? I want to keep advertising even though lead time is long. Thanks.

Both systems use the same algorythms. NO changes to back-end system if one changes.

if you don’t have a spec mobile link to submit, use LINK re: responsive sites.

Showing on Google vs Google/shopping

Search results vs Shopping result. More parity coming, but now, that data is not available.

Ad position: text ads, pos 1, vs 2, correlates to performance.

Google’s challenge here is that there a lot of dif ways PLA show.

CTR is not as correlated to pos (1-11) huge dif.

Google Partners Connect 2014 Success

Google Partners Connect

Some swag, that matches DC’s branding.

On May 21st, 2014, Google hosted a YouTube Live Streaming event called, Google Partners Now.  

By CT Perez
Founder, Deep Creatives
(916) 546-5707 or googler@deepcreatives.com

The panel was led by three leaders with deep knowledge of Google’s tools for growing businesses.   They discussed best-practices and essentials that professionals working with Google’s business development tools must know.

KEY POINTS:

  • Respond to reviews, negative and positive
  • Don’t duplicate reviews (copy to your website(s))
  • Maintain current copyright notices on your sites
  • If you’re an expert in a field, write, blog, publish
  • It takes 2 minutes to create copy for a Google Ad
  • 72% of consumers who search for a local business make a purchase within 5 minutes
  • Utilize Google’s remarketing technology to double conversion rates
  • Don’t try to “game,” Google, e.g., don’t ‘stuff’ your website with keywords
  • Get listed in directories, GET REVIEWS and GET ON GOOGLE MAPS
  • Establish ownership of your Google + page for business
  • Be consistent with your name, address and phone number
  • 94% of consumers research products online before making a purchase
  • Use Google Analytics to understand what’s working and what’s not
  • It can be complicated, hire a professional if you want to save time

One element that was not mentioned was the use of negative keywords. It’s an advanced technique, but one that will  maximize your ROI.

Unlike many other webinars that discuss what businesses can do to increase their effectiveness within their digital sales and marketing strategies, this presentation was to-the-point with no fluff.

The stream was live, so if you missed it, you’ll have to wait and see if Google decides to post it on YouTube.  My guess is that they probably will, but they want to ensure that those of us who took time to be present, in the now, are in the know, first.

If you would like assistance growing your business with Google’s tools, I’d be more than happy to to talk with you.

The speakers

Arjan Dijk, VP, Global Small Business Marketing

Help small businesses succeed on the webArjan, author of The Small Think Big Book, will share unique insights, inspirational stories, and actionable ideas to help small businesses thrive in a hyper-connected marketplace.

Fred Vallaeys, Google AdWords Evangelist

Maximize your business onlineFred will examine how businesses can navigate online advertising and expand their online presence through smarter insights—leading to greater customer engagement with digital ads.

Ben Wood, Director, Channel Sales Americas

Work and win with an agencyBen will discuss how small businesses should approach working with an agency, what resources the Google agency team provides, and the importance of working with an online professional.