4 Easy Tips For Creating a Successful Small Business Website

4 Easy Tips For Creating a Successful Small Business Website

For small business, having a professional website is non-negotiable. A website is your single most valuable tool for establishing your brand, capturing leads and nurturing customers to the point of conversion. As a small business, there’s a lot riding on the quality and performance of your web design. Unfortunately, there are still many small businesses out there who are attempting to tread water without the benefit of a well designed website. This is a mistake, but it’s easy to see how it happens. Web design is complex, overwhelming and if it’s not your area of expertise, you likely have no idea where to begin. So, where do you start? Take a deep breath, take it slow and develop a web design strategy that includes these 4 tips for creating a small business site that your audience will love.   Breathing Room A mistake that some businesses make with their web design is that they try to accomplish too much. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t have high expectations for your site, but you don’t want to cram your web pages so full that it leaves the visitor without a visual point of focus.   Instead, choose web design that has a clean, fresh appearance. Avoid clutter and include enough “white space” to provide your visitors with a clear visual path to follow around your page. Clean design is also best from a mobile perspective, which brings us to our next point.   Responsive Design It’s important for both user experience and search engine optimization that your site be able to meet the demands of the mobile consumer. Responsive...
What Not to Do with Content and SEO

What Not to Do with Content and SEO

If you’ve devoted any amount of time to optimizing your online presence, you’ve without a doubt encountered endless advice about all the things you should be doing to get SEO “right”. Unfortunately, there’s not much out there about what you might be doing wrong and it could be damaging your chances at gaining any traction in the digital world. To help gain more visibility and traffic online, here are four things you should never be doing with SEO and content marketing strategies.   Taking Shortcuts with Keyword Optimization   Even with shifting priorities in Google’s algorithm, keywords will always remain relevant to SEO. We’re willing to bet that you already know that the right keywords help you get noticed. But, what you might not be getting right is how you’re using them. We know that at least half of search engine queries are 4 words or longer. If you’re stuck in a rut of using one or two keywords per page or piece of content, you’re not even close to optimizing your keyword strategy. Consumers today have become more savvy about how they search online. They’re using longer phrases and more detailed words to communicate what they’re looking for. The rise of voice search has contributed to this as well, to the point that longer phrases that match natural language patterns are winning out over the old standard approach to keywords.   Not Going Deep Enough with Content   Content is an essential delivery vehicle for your brand’s message and the value you provide to your market. Taking a wimpy approach to content marketing is like putting someone on...
3 Ways to Help Your Agency Create a Winning Marketing Plan

3 Ways to Help Your Agency Create a Winning Marketing Plan

You want your business to be successful and there’s one thing that you absolutely need for that to happen – customers. The problem that many businesses face isn’t a lack of a market who can be nurtured into customers, but that they don’t have a plan in place for reaching out to them. A marketing plan is the strongest tool you can have for connecting with your target audience and unfortunately, many businesses don’t have one. The U.S. Small Business Association estimates that about half of small businesses don’t have a marketing plan and nearly 20% of larger businesses are trying to navigate their way to success in the dark without a plan as well. Considering that a strong digital presence is something that’s so important today, a marketing strategy is a must. Don’t worry, a marketing agency can assist with this but there are some ways that you can help them and ensure that you’ll end up with a results driven strategy that works. Get to Know Each Other In order to create a marketing plan with an agency, the two of you need to have a relationship. If someone is promising you results based on a set of strategies that are “proven” to work but hasn’t taken the time to get to know you or your business, it’s a sure sign that they’re not going to generate the results you’re looking for. The agency you work with should want to get to know you, learn about your goals – both short term and long term, and want to know as much as possible about the audience you...
Why UNAP is Important for Your Business

Why UNAP is Important for Your Business

The world of digital marketing is filled with enough acronyms to make your head spin. Even if you’re new to optimizing your presence online, you’ve no doubt encountered the classics – like SEO, PPC, ROI, etc. While all these have a place in building up your business in the digital landscape, UNAP is one of the most important for also securing foot traffic through your door. Never heard of UNAP before? Let us tell you all about it and why it’s important for your business.   What Is UNAP?   UNAP stands for Universal (or URL) Name, Address and Phone number. It’s essentially an acronym for all of your essential contact information. Except for the URL, the UNAP sums up all the reasons why businesses loved their Yellow Pages listing in days gone by. There are multiple reasons that having easily accessible UNAP information is important for your business, but before we get into that, it’s necessary to first talk about the need for consistency.   UNAP Consistency and SEO   Having your UNAP information available on the top internet directories is a major step in the right direction for local SEO. The only problem is that your information might be out there in places you aren’t even aware of, and some of it might not be accurate. This is a huge ding to your SEO strategy because both search engines and your audience are looking for signals that you’re the real deal. Consistency across all your listings provides a level of trust that’s necessary for search engine approval and also for establishing validity with your local audience. Whether...
Create Success in 2019 with These Hot Web Design Trends

Create Success in 2019 with These Hot Web Design Trends

Building a presence online has become a necessity for practically every business, and there are many different components to doing so successfully. As more and more businesses flood the digital space, it’s easy to forget just how complex building a brand online can be – especially in an environment where advancements in technology and consumer behaviors spur constant fluctuations in digital trends. With all this movement, your website is the one place that stands as a consistent, reliable representation of your brand. It’s tempting to build a website that you love and call it good but if you really want to generate interest in your brand, and the traffic that comes with it, then you also need to be paying attention to the web design trends that are capturing the attention of your target audience. 2019 is almost here, and with it a new perspective on what effective web development looks like. To make the coming year your most successful yet, here are a few of the upcoming design trends that you want to pay attention to.   Making the Most of Video   The fact that the use of video is a leading trend is web design doesn’t come as surprise to anyone. What is changing is how video is being used to encourage engagement and longer visits on websites. Take for example, how video ties into the mobile user experience. The number of mobile visits to websites grew from 57% to 63% in one year’s time, and with that came an increase in the amount of time mobile visitors were spending on those sites and a drop...

Google Pigeon Update – What It Means To Your Business

What Happened? As many of you know, Google is working all the time on providing its users the best search engine results.  In order to do this, Google makes 500 – 600 algorithm updates each year with one or two major updates included in that.   On July 24th, it appears that Google made some changes to its local ranking algorithm. Currently called “Pigeon” by Search Engine Land, this new algorithm update is the largest one since last year’s Humming bird update and is ruffling some feathers per say. What the industry is seeing is that this update is affecting brick and mortar businesses than online retailers via modifying local directory listings.  What we’re finding is that search results seem to be more closely related to traditional search rankings.  It appears that Google is relying less on its Google Places listings as many business owners are seeing their map rankings lowering in the search engine result pages.  There has been some speculation that part of the reason for this change is due to the “Yelp Issue” noticed back in 2012 with the release of Google Places.  Many felt that Google was manipulating results to place its Google Places results ahead of other directories such as Yelp.  Many are finding with the new Pigeon update that Yelp and other directories are listing higher in the search engine ranks.   How Does Google’s Pigeon Update Affect My Business? There are pros and cons with any of Google’s update.  If your business has been following Google’s best practices regarding their off page search engine optimization and citation listing creation then this can be a...