Hey Industrial Manufacturer's, Rep's and Distributor's: Consider Web SEO When designing Your Literature!

Bad Web PDF SEO (click for larger)
Just about every company we deal with makes the same mistake with their online literature. SEO titles and meta information is commonly overlooked.

Literature is always done on some form of desktop publisher (Word, InDesign, Quark) and generally always done by people with print publishing backgrounds (not web design). The nicely designed brochures, line cards, and engineering documents are then sent to printers for handing out, and outputted to PDF versions for the Web.

The problem arises during the conversion to PDF from the desktop publishing software. These software packages almost always default the creator's file name as the "meta title" of the new PDF, leaving an often cryptic and useless SEO document title.  For instance, seeing a document name like "Jan 2017 Line Card" or Jan 2017 Eng Doc", or worse yet seeing "Doc.01012017.3425" is of no value at all for Web indexing.

Good Web PDF SEO
Good Web PDF SEO (click for larger)
While Google and Bing index a PDF's full content, adding a good title, description, author, and copyright to these documents is very important for SEO.

Creators of literature need to be aware of these items before and during their design, and either input them to the right fields in the desktop publishing software, or later edit them in Adobe Acrobat.

Recommendations for good SEO for Web literature:

  1. Start off with a good SEO title for the document including the company name and maybe even good search terms. Ex: "Line Card Jan 20, 2017" should be something like "ACME-Rep-Company-New-York-New-Jersey-Process-Control-Line-Card-1-20-2017"
  2. Start off with a good SEO description for the literature. Ex: "ACME Flowmeter provides more accurate control in low flow applications". 
  3. Make the company the author of the document.
  4. Assign a copyright statement referencing the company, such as "All rights reserved ACME Widget Company".
These small steps during the creation of the PDF will payoff in much better search results for your products and company brand.

To discuss in more detail, email info@cms4i.com and we'll start a dialog.

What is the Purpose of Your LinkedIn Company Page?

LinkedIn logo
LinkedIn Logo
So, Small Business Owner, your marketing people or your nephew that's a computer wizard told you to get a LinkedIn page for your company. Without full understanding, or maybe with what you think is a full understanding, you have your internet marketing provider create a page for you. Check the box next to that item....done.

No, not done. While you may have completed the task, what you may not know is what that company page is really for. What is it going to do for you? Is it "just there", or do you need to have some ongoing program of posting, like with your other social media sites?
What is the goal of a company LinkedIn page?
Sell stuff, right? We want to sell product or service, somehow, through the presence of that company page. Well.....no, that's wrong. Very wrong.

Let me get right to it. Your LinkedIn company page is a primary public facing part of your organization. Your physical location continues be of less importance to potential customers when they are evaluating whether to bring you in to consult on a project, or offer your solutions to their challenges. Your customers want to make an assessment, before they meet with you, about whether you can provide or accomplish what they need. How they do that is by browsing through your online presence. Potential customers are getting their first impression of your company without your awareness, without even interacting with anyone from your organization.

Your online presence is comprised of your website, social media pages, blog, and any other internet locations identifiable and discoverable with your company name. Your website is of your own creation, but social media pages have general themes associated with them, each presenting your company in a different fashion. For example, Twitter is heavily weighted toward current events with it's constantly rolling news feed. Each location says something about your company that is presented to a visitor without any interpretation of context provided by a live company representative. Make sure that these pages present a clear and positive picture of your organization.

Back to LinkedIn. LinkedIn is all business, all the time. With great and increasing frequency, you will be judged by your LinkedIn page. In answer to the question posed earlier..
The goal of your LinkedIn company page is to show your company is professional, knowledgeable, capable, current, and involved.
Let's break that down.

  • Professional - We all generally have a concept of what "professional" is, but it is important to display those aspects of your company and its people that support a professional image. That can range through publicizing charitable activities, project completions, trade shows, awards, and much more.
  • Knowledgeable - Customers want to work with the smart people to solve their problems. Find ways to showcase, through posts on your page and articles that you author and publish on your page (underlined because it is important), the high level of industry specific knowledge that your company brings to each and every customer encounter.
  • Capable - How do you show how capable your organization is? Having all your employees linked to the company page is one way. Make certain that every employee's profile is well done, providing a positive image of the person and their skills. Another way to highlight your company's abilities is to write your own case studies, articles that describe a real challenge and your company's part in solving it. Your creativity will help you discover more ways to portray your company's value.
  • Current - This one is very important. Content on your LinkedIn company page, or any social media account, should show activity in the very recent past. A page with the most recent post being from a year ago looks like it has been abandoned. Keep posting and publishing, even with small items.
  • Involved - Present content that shows participation in community activities, trade shows, standards committees, whatever endeavors and activities that pertain to your target market or industry. 
A LinkedIn company page should not be viewed by you, Small Business Owner, as a graphic poster about your company. Do not allow it to be static. LinkedIn is where other professionals, potential customers, and potential employees will go to make an evaluation of your company. Your time and effort invested in making and keeping up that online presence will reap dividends.

Follow, comment, contact me with your questions. I can be contacted directly at CMS4i by putting @TomO in the message section. At CMS4i, we help small companies build their brand and web presence, so contact us anytime.