The Problem With Digital Marketing and SEO

Creating a popular online website can seem impossible if you're trying to run your own business at the same time. All of the advice you see on Search Engine Optimisation can be really confusing and there are so many people out there promising instant SEO results and rarely delivering any benefit to your business in terms of increased sales.
If this sounds familiar and you're just sick to the back teeth of trying to get your website listed on Google and you want some no-nonsense, plain English advice on how Google, SEO, Social Media, and Digital Marketing really works for YOUR business, you're certainly in the right place.

I'm Steve Counsell and I've been in the SEO and Digital Marketing arena for the last 10 years. I've been where you are now, trying to run a business and get seen on Google with my initial venture as a professional photographer.

In fact as a photographer I was better at getting seen on google than I was a photographer; this is the reality of turning my hobby (photography) into a business.
I got so good at being seen at the top of google for my main keywords around photography that other local businesses started to ask "How come you got to the top of Google?".

The fact is it took me ages to get on top of the right keywords and to create the right sort of content that would get me on top of google. I admit that it was easier 8 to 10 years ago and that i did do some stuff that was well outside of the Google guidelines. Some of that stuff got me new business and some of it got me penalised and dropped from the rankings; but at least i was able to understand which was which. it was so interesting to see what worked an what did not work that I started to do lots of testing on "spare domain names" and simple websites that I set up.

This is what lead me to start providing SEO or Search Engine Optimisation for small businesses just like mine. I became pretty good, pretty quickly and so the income from SEO soon overtook the income from photography and to put it bluntly I followed the money!

These days I've been taking a break from the everyday grind (see below) and have decided to offer businesses just like yours, an Online Consultancy for SEO and Digital Marketing.

Search Engine Optimisation

I've spent over 10 years in the field of Search Engine Optimisation and have been referred to as an SEO Expert in my "home town" of Brighton and Hove. Of course this SEO Expert title bestowed on me is of little use if there are no demonstrable results for businesses I provide services to.
The basis of SEO is to provide more of the targeted traffic to the website in question through a process of Keyword identification, website content creation, web page optimisation for a target keyword set and to ensure that there is a good backlink profile and plenty of Social Signals in order that your ideal customers can easily find your website in the search engine results.
Over the last few years I've written a whole range of blog posts and articles on SEO detailing the process as I saw it at the time.
Most of the information in my blog posts is still relevant an accurate. Of course Google have clamped down on some of the practices that used to work but were outside of the main guidelines they like us all to work within for the SEO process.

Read my blog here

Social & Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing is different to SEO. You see SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is a narrow field of expertise that will make changes to web pages in order to make each piece of website content relevant to a specific set of keywords and key phrases.
Digital Marketing differs from SEO in that it covers a wide range of activities, including SEO, that will market your business in the digital arena.
Looking at the very basics of Digital Marketing we need to include some good keywords research, Social Media content and engagement along with the webpage optimisation and a great deal of link building in order to provide an excellent backlink profile.
It's important to get your website basics sorted out first and to make sure that the optimisation hits all the main points for your best keyword set. This in itself will improve the possibilities of getting your site ranked higher in the search results.
In addition to this basic SEO, the Digital Marketing processes will work through a content production schedule ensuring that the content produced is optimised for the main keywords and that it gets the publicity an exposure it needs to make your website more popular and attracts more of the relevant visitors your business needs.

Life Is Short, Enjoy It

March 2016 saw us purchase our very first caravan or RV as some people would call it. We had been planning to buy a caravan sometime in 2016 but had a fairly small budget.
We spent some time searching around for a caravan dealer who we felt would provide us with the best service and supply a used caravan that would suite the needs of our plans to travel more.
This website will, along side our YouTube Channel, will tell our story as we transition into Full Time Living in an RV or Caravan.

The RV / Caravan

On a fairly random visit to The Sussex Caravan Centre where we liked to go ann have a look around the used and new caravans and RVs. To our delight we found a Caravan that seemed just right for us. A 4 berth Coachman Pastiche 540/4 at just short of £7000.
After securing a deal on the caravan we bought it there and then and agreed to collect it after we'd had a chance to get a tower fitted to our car (Audi A6 Allroad)

Full Time RVers

Becoming full time RV'ers is a daunting process and one that has, at times, caused some conflict between me and Wendy. What we'd decided to do was to "sell up" completely, yes sell everything we owned, including our "home" while we travel and then to settle in a smaller bricks and mortar home in the future.
We collected the caravan on 23rd March 2016 and have been almost full time in it since then. I say almost full time because we had a few weeks where we had to go back to our home to clear it out and get it prepared for sale.

Now that we've done all of that and put the flat on the market we're traveling around the UK, living full time in an RV and loving every minute of it.

During April, May, June and July 2016 we're on our travels up the East Coast of England but have to be back in Sussex on 29th July 2016 for a few weeks to sort out some business with solicitors etc.

Bricks and Mortar

As I write this we're unsure about what to do about what could be called a permanent retirement property. Owning a property feels like the right thing to do in terms of a secure long term future. After all it's just not feasible to think that we can travel full time in an RV for the rest of our lives. At some point I'll not be allowed to drive due to age. OK that's probably not for another 20 or 30 years but there will come a day when the authorities tell me to stop or I decide that it's just not safe for me to drive any longer.

So what to do?

The options for us are:
  • Renovation project
  • Retirement flat is protected block
  • Bungalow with parking
  • Rentable flat to generate some income

I'm sure that this is not an exhaustive list but it's sort of where our thinking is. We're not currently considering buying property in Europe like many older people have done but it's not totally out of bounds.

You can keep up with our news over at our Youtube Channel and on the blog page here

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