Digital Marketing Trends in 2019

Every year there are new and improved strategies in the digital marketing world. With new strategies, comes challenges for small businesses to keep ahead of the curb. We’ve reached out to the best local digital marketing experts to inform us what we should expect in 2019. Diversify Your Strategy “Our company focuses on digital marketing for local service based businesses,” says Rebekah Richards of JuceBox Local Marketing Partners. “With so much of the traditional page 1 real estate being taken up by ads and other Google features that push down traditional ranking spots, often below the fold, we focus on getting featured in four ways: 1) The Google Maps pack. Our clients need to show up in the top 3 and they must have Google reviews that beat their competition. Reputation marketing and SEO now go hand-in-hand. 2) Ranking YouTube videos for common questions in their niche as well as branded searches. The YouTube thumbnail really helps them stand out and videos that feature the business owners and their employees or customer testimonials increase trust and rapport. 3) Featured snippets. Content that is created has a heavy focus on answering questions and we use the FAQ schema to increase the likelihood of our answer being selected for the featured snippets. There is nothing quite like being featured at the very top of the Google search results. 4) Google Posts. By posting to Google we generate more organic clicks for our clients. Since Google posts come with CTA buttons visitors are encouraged to take action off the post.” Create In-Depth Content “Give readers and Google what they want to see; in-depth content. There’s been a bad habit circulating of sites writing blogs that seem to say the same thing post after post,” says Kelly Rossi of Marketing Magnitude. “What we’re finding now is that writing longer content with better information is performing better with visitors and on Google.” Find A Reputable Marketing Company “Work with a company that keeps you informed. Your digital presence is paramount, and can be your largest asset if utilized properly,” says Kelly Shoumate of AdCaffeine Marketing. Don’t Forget About Technical SEO “SEO used to balance on-page and off-page, but now technical SEO is a big piece of the pie,” echoes Shane Griffiths of Clarity Online. “We focus heavily on page speed, caching and rendering, Schema, site structure, and other technical factors when optimizing a website.” Long-Term Game “There isn’t a “magic bullet” with SEO. Each situation is different. Sometimes a client comes in with a mess that we can show improvement on rather quickly,” says Nick Fitzgerald of AuDSEO. “Many times, it’s the long haul. However, cleaning up messy...

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Charlottesville Novelists Say Making Them Pay Business Taxes Is Unconstitutional
Aug01

Charlottesville Novelists Say Making Them Pay Business Taxes Is Unconstitutional

As two people who make their living writing novels, Corban Addison and John Hart don’t have to follow the traditional system for paying taxes through an employer. After receiving sizable tax bills from the city of Charlottesville and Albemarle County, however, the two novelists have decided to take a stand against what they deem an unconstitutional act. The state code in Virginia exempts writers for newspapers and magazines from paying business license taxes but does not extend the same exemptions to novelists. While it is not completely unheard-of for businesses to lack knowledge on their own tax information — a CNBC Small Business Survey found that in 2016 22% of small business owners didn’t know their effective tax rate — Hart and Addison weren’t aware that the state considered them businesses at all. The Institute for Justice, a nonprofit civil rights organization, is representing the two men in the lawsuits they filed against the city and county on July 24. According to attorney Renée Flaherty, the city and county are participating in unconstitutional discrimination by exempting writers who write for newspapers and magazines from the tax code and not independent authors. These writers supply the 12 books per year that the average American reads. Yet they don’t receive the same tax exemptions writers who work for media organizations do, even though there is often crossover between the two types of writing. “Instead of protecting and supporting its creative community, Charlottesville and Albemarle County have decided to treat it like an ATM,” Flaherty said. The lawsuit specifically cites the city and county’s actions as breaking the writers’ First Amendment rights, as it is a discrepancy in treatment over speech. The suit contests that the business license tax doesn’t clearly state the types of businesses that need to pay, violating their 14th Amendment rights as well. Flaherty clarified in the press conference announcing the lawsuits on July 24 that the purpose of business license taxes is to account for the cost of infrastructure that supports business operations. This covers aspects like the roads businesses are located on and the parking lots, 90% of which in the U.S. are surfaced with asphalt pavement, customers park in. Flaherty says that her clients, however, don’t use the city’s infrastructure to turn profits or serve customers as other businesses do. Hart maintains that he doesn’t use anything from the city or county for his work. He doesn’t even need parking spaces from the city, just his laptop and his imagination. If he decided to remodel his entire home to accommodate his work life, which could take up to one year to complete, he could try...

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