I posted over a year ago about how to save your company some extra bucks. With many things still equal in our economy, I thought an updated list of seo tips and general money saving tips would be worthwhile.
Spend Your Time on Actionable Items
We have numerous processes and documents delivered to clients across twelve months. Every so often we sit down and review what we're delivering. Really asking ourselves what kind of action can be taken from a specific document helps determine its value.
If only SEER can take action on it, do we need to flash it to the client? If both of us can't take action, what are we trying to get across?
Removing non-actionable documents could save hours a month. Time that could be spent improving more processes, getting better results for existing clients, or taking on a new client.
Trade in Your Old Printer Cartridges
I said this post was for any business and it definitely is. You can recycle cartridges or refill them for half the cost. At SEER, we bring our old cartridges to Staples whenever we're forced to go there. $3 credited to our account for every cartridge, big or small. If you work in a larger office and go through ten a month, that's $360/year in free supplies you could be getting.
Find the Right Group of Copywriters
SEER will hire multiple copywriters for projects requiring a lot of posts or pages rewritten. By hiring multiple ones, you'll be able to find out how much work you get for the hourly rate. A writer with a higher hourly rate might actually be better because they knock out more work in less time. Test a few out and it saves in the long run.
Bargain for Links
If you're sponsoring an event and you can get a valuable link for $40, see if you can get a multiple sponsor discount. TONS of events, non-profits, school clubs & even fraternities/sororities are strapped for cash, so make them an offer than can't refuse and keep reeling in links.
Use Your Big Words (longtail)
There's a small part of my heart that loves the unoptimized metal stamping industry. When searching for Metal Stamping, you'll see www.lyons.com/ show up as the second result. Metal Stamping has an estimated 15,000 exact searches each month. Search for Metal Stamping Service or Metal Stamping Companies and find Lyons again. They're lurking on the second page for "Companies" and they aren't on the first three pages for "Service."
While this is a site that has not been fully optimized, just a few small changes could probably get them ranked on the first page for these two terms. Just these two could add significant traffic & conversions. What words are you ranking well for that could help piggyback longtail keywords onto the first page?
Avoid Clients with the Wrong Questions
Give some serious consideration about taking on clients who ask one or all of the following questions:
1. How many links have you gotten this month? 2. Why haven't you gotten me in dmoz yet? 3. Why is my Pagerank still low? 4. What rank can you get me for this keyword? 5. How does my Adwords account impact my SEO rankings?
Answering these once is one thing, but many times the person asking these questions is more worried about aspects other than traffic & conversions. Unrealistic expectations and wanting to quantify all aspects of SEO are flags at the beginning of meetings that should warn you of a potential issue & potential waste of time. Even if the client is pleased with results, you may waste over an hour every 1-2 week detailing why dmoz really doesn't matter or why delivering a specified number of links each month is a poor metric of linkbuilding success.
Non-profit linking was mentioned above, but one reason these links are even more valuable is because you can write off many of these donations. Finding non-profit sites that link out to their donors is just another step in getting the most mileage out of your link spend.
Don't Be a Shady Company
We already spoke about recycling. There are several websites where you can report businesses that do not recycle. There are numerous counties that allow you to report places that don't recycle. While this may go hand in hand with treating your employees respectfully, knowing you just recycled 100+ small bottles & cans each week makes us feel good here.
Now for the really shady part; be on the up and up with your taxes. If you're under-reporting or trying to be sneaky, it may be worth it for an underpaid employee to blow the whistle on your business. The IRS will pay out 15% of the amount they collect up to $10 million. That's a whole lot of zeros.
Spend Your Time with High Level Data
It's probably not worth your time to go out and get directory links. Same goes for sending out link request emails, keyword ranking fluctuations, finding what terms dropped over 25% over a specific time period, or gathering as much data as possible about your clients without going crazy.
Automate as much as possible and when you can't automate any further, hire an intern or outsource a lot of the grunt work. Paying an intern $10/hour to churn through lower level tasks or to filter through linking opportunities will get you in front of data that may need some high level analysis or recommendations.
Hope some of these can help if things are down or make good situations even better. Add to the list if you've got them.