I had the opportunity to catch up with Adam Vest, President at My Denver Digital in Colorado about the current state of SEO and how Service-Based Businesses can use Search Engine Optimization to drive business leads.
Here is our conversation:
BIM: Hello and welcome to the show. This is your host Neil Howe, and today my special guest is Adam Vest, president of MyDenverDigital.com and he helps companies throughout Colorado and across the country, increase their online presence by offering customized digital marketing services, including search engine optimization, website development, and social media marketing at a fair and honest price. Welcome to the show Adam Vest.
Adam Vest: Neil, hello, an absolute pleasure to be with you today.
BIM: Well, tell us a little bit more about yourself, Adam and how My Denver Digital came about.
Adam Vest: Sure. So about three years ago I was working for a national advertising agency as an account executive, basically selling pay per click and directory placement. And at that time the company that I was working for did not offer SEO services. So, I would be running these appointments with my clients and you know, nine times out of 10 they would end up asking me how to rank their website organically on the major search engines.
Adam Vest: And you know, I realized pretty early on that I wasn’t necessarily in a position to be able to help my customers. And, that was very frustrating for me because as you know, pay per click leads can get pretty costly and search engine optimization, generally speaking, is a much lower cost per lead. It was also difficult not having control over the products that I was selling because I wasn’t actually the one running the campaign. At end of the day, that’s really what led me to start Denver Digital.
BIM: So you just wanted to take it on yourself and be your own boss and do what you knew needed to be done as far as the SEO? Is SEO the large part of your business or is that more web design?
Adam Vest: Yes. So, search engine optimization is kind of the core of what we do. However, website design and development certainly tie into that significantly.
BIM: Yeah, they all go hand in hand. You need one to work with the other. So tell me about your clients, Adam. What kind of clients is it that you help out? Is there any particular niche that you like to stick with?
Adam Vest: Well, we focus heavily on the service industry. We have clients that range from national hat companies to roofing companies to HVAC companies to eCommerce, a bow tie guy; so we kind of run the gambit as far as the clients that we’re able to help and that we’re interested in partnering with.
BIM: Let’s talk about the service industries because there are tons and tons of service industries out there and most of them, at least the big ones in the cities are times have digital marketing teams working on their sites. But, uh, tell me what kind of problems those kinds of service industries are having.
Adam Vest: Sure. And you’re absolutely right. I would say the majority of service industry businesses that have been around for awhile have certainly done SEO or pay per click or direct mail. But, as far as some of the biggest challenges that I see is really just a lack of online presence. I think most business owners at this point have figured out how to set up their Google My Business page and have a pretty good understanding of how to build or promote Facebook ads or posts, but I think one of the biggest challenges is really knowing how to accurately define their target market as well as their customers and that’s going to end up turning a click into an actual phone call or a sale.
BIM: Yes. That’s one of the biggest things that I hear from a lot of different SEO’s that I’ve talked with is, some companies say, well, I’ve got you more traffic and you have twice as much traffic going to your site right now. But, traffic in itself is useless unless it’s targeted traffic that has a problem that needs to be solved, right?
Adam Vest: That’s exactly right. Yeah. I mean, if I could bring you 500 visitors to your site and not one of them made the call, versus if we were to bring you one visitor that ended up turning into a customer, which one would be more powerful, obviously the one that would turn into an actual sale.
BIM: So what kinds of things do you do in order to really target the right audience?
Adam Vest: Well, I think the foundation of any good SEO campaign is the actual website. I hear a lot of people say, when they’re talking about the foundations of a campaign, I hear a lot of keyword analysis, things like that. But without a website, your keyword analysis doesn’t really matter. So I think having an easy to read, easy to navigate website, well coded, not having a lot of bloat within the code of the site is really important and it’s a great starting point. That’s really where the work begins is once we’ve developed a great website for a customer.
BIM: We talk about sites like WordPress where there’s a lot of companies using WordPress to design their websites. They have a ton of extra code that is not needed in there. Is that slowing down the load speeds?
Adam Vest: It absolutely does. It’s one of the biggest factors I think that affects the speed of a website, having all of that extra bloatware in the form of different plugins. So, I think a lot of folks will end up installing some kind of additional code into the site and then they just kind of forget it. They might not be using it and it’s just kind of staying on the site taking up space and really slowing down the site. We always try and target a three second or lower load time for websites just because of the fact that once you start getting into the four, five and six second range, you have a significant drop off from customers just backing out of the site or going into to the next site that will actually load a little bit faster.