The News-Gazette Digital Services team wants to help small businesses succeed in the online world. This collection of solutions present real answers to common questions asked throughout our business community. The Digital Services team also offers in-depth analysis of online marketing as it pertains to businesses in the Champaign, Urbana, and surrounding communities through our company blog.

The answer may be a combination of things. Your site may not be optimized for your business keywords. It may also be related to your site performance and usability. How fast do your pages load and does the web copy meet your customer's interest at a glance? How old is your website? Are you the first owner of the domain name? If it's a new website, you're best to submit your website to the search engines, continue building content, and find value links to help get your site indexed. A quality link from a trusted source can help have your site indexed overnight.

The Digital Advantage gives many websites an upper hand when it comes to optimizing for business keywords. Your site can gain traction quicker with a more solid link profile, like the one offered by the Digital Advantage. Your business profile listing will attract more visitors and bolster your site's reputation with search engines.

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This could be for a number of reasons. The age of a domain makes would be the first place to start. The next place would be to look if the site has been penalized by Google or the other search engines. The majority of the time, the domain will be in search results, but the problem is that the site doesn't appear for specific keyword searches. For instance, a plumbers website would ideally be shown when a user searches for "Champaign plumbers." But that's not always the case. If your website is not appearing for specific keywords then you'll need to optimize your site text and also receive valuable links to help position your site better in the future. It can take time, but with the right tools and support the best search visibility results can be achieved.

Consider the Digital Advantage product as a way to begin the journey towards online success. The identity management part of the package pushes your business contact information out to high traffic directories in minutes. Meaning you save time and energy by using our package deal. We also manually submit your business to various directories that can help you achieve a marked improvement in online visibility.

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You could do a regular Google search for your business name with the appended "+review" mechanic. This may return results, but it may miss crucial ones. The Digital Advantage package offers a robust reporting feature for businesses to monitor the far reaches of the web at a touch of a button. The reports include visibility and social parameters to monitor your business performance across social media sites and review websites.

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Every business needs a website. It's the starting block for the race to success. Without a website, it becomes difficult to promote your business. There are some exceptions, like businesses that live off a social media profile, but those test cases rarely work for every business type. The best place to start promotion for your business would have to be building a website.

If you build it, they may not come. A new website can struggle for attention, traffic, and conversions without a solid marketing campaign. It's first best to imagine where your customers spend their time online. Is your product something that answers a common question? If so, your prospective customers may be searching for your solution through search engines. In that case, you could either target keyword optimization on your site and work to improve your organic results or you could purchase Google Ads to start receiving traffic to your page.

Social media also offers a great way to connect with customers and potential clients. Savvy business owners using new technology like Twitter and Facebook have found plenty of new customers by using their powers of attraction.

A business needs a website. A smart business will optimize their business website for optimal keyword performance, supplementing organic traffic with paid advertising along the way. And then there's mobile and social media promotion that can truly take a business to the next level.

The News-Gazette promotes all of our Digital Advantage member websites each and every day of the week. We're constantly working to improve our customer's online visibility. When you sign up as a Digital Advantage customer, you're assigned a personal account manager who can help explain many of the topics discussed in this solution. If you want to do those things on your own, great! We'll help you get started. If you want some help with optimization, marketing campaigns, or other consulting areas, then give us a chance too.

One of the best places to start is with our Digital Advantage package. It provides the most comprehensive and valuable service for local businesses. We believe so strongly that you'll love the product, we're offering a no-contract, no-hassle sign-up and cancellation process. You handle your account through this website. Cancel anytime, but we believe you'll stick around because there's great value in more traffic to your website. Value that far exceeds the cost of doing business with us each month.

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A new website can be very exciting. Don't let the excitement turn to frustration by staring at traffic statistics every hour of the day. Get the word out by "pinging" the major search engines, notify your customers through your social media accounts, and send out an email to your valuable customer list. Don't have those things? We can help you build your marketing materials through our online marketing services.

Here's a few quick ideas to get your website more visibility...

1. Have you included your web address on your offline marketing materials? Did you update business cards? Did you include a link in your online profiles from LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter?

2. Write your web address into your email signature.

3. Let friendly bloggers in your industry know about your new website. They may feature your business.

These are just a few inexpensive ways to increase your site traffic.

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Your business name, address, and phone number (NAP) information can be difficult to keep up to date on hundreds of websites. Especially when many sites do not have you enter that information, but actually scrape it from websites and other online sources. To keep your data up-to-date, you would either need to manually visit those sites and petition for the information to be updated, and hope someone responded or use our solution to push the data out to multiple online sources. The identity management features come with the managed service we call the Digital Advantage.

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80% of users accessed the internet in the past 24 hours.

59% of all internet users in the area make use of online media.

75% of internet users in the area are aware of The News-Gazette website.

76% of individuals use the internet each day, according to a PEW Research poll.

½ of the total U.S. Internet audience visits a social networking site in a given day.

Google estimates more than 20% of all searches have a local component to them.