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Search Engine Optimisation

Ideas, tips and advice regardsing Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • 50% Of page One Search Results Are HTTPS

    Moz report: 50% of page one search results are HTTPS

    Based on the trend of sites switching to HTTPS and what is ranking in Google, we may see 70% of the page one results going to HTTPS by the end of 2017. Continue reading

  • Google Mobile Intrusive Interstitials Penalty

    Google has officially confirmed they have begun rolling out the intrusive mobile interstitial penalty yesterday. Google warned us that this was coming almost a six months ago, and it did start rolling out on January 10, 2017, as Google promised.

    Continue reading
  • 6 Critical errors of SEO

    Are you making any of these critical SEO errors on your e-commerce site?

    A lot of people believe that when you create an e-commerce website and upload hundreds or even thousands of products, the search engine traffic will just start rolling in.

    Continue reading
  • What will blogging do for your SEO?

    How many of you can say that you have a blog on your website and it’s used correctly on a regular basis?

    Continue reading
  • How Long Does SEO Take To Work?

    This is one of the most common questions within the digital marketing world and the hardest to answer. Hopefully this blog post will give you a better understanding of today’s SEO practices.

    Old SEO used to purely focus on a small amount of ‘golden keywords’. These were the sole focus for SEO at one point, where everyone was fixated on if your business was ranking #1 for your most popular key phrase. Don’t get us wrong, this is important but with SEO changing at the speed it is, it’s not the only factor to focus on. If you are only focusing on a small group of generic keywords, the chances are that isn’t what people are searching for, therefore you’re not being found for what really matters. The emphasis should be on a much larger number of natural language search terms, especially with the use of Siri and Google Now becoming so popular.

    If by asking ‘How long does SEO take to work?’ you mean ‘How long will it be before I get top rankings?’ then you’re mistaking outputs for outcomes. Selling ‘top rankings’ is easy because it’s what every business wants to hear, but what good is a number #1 ranking in Google when your business doesn’t generate any sales or leads? SEO is focussed on optimising your website to ensure that people find your products/services and they convert.

    There are so many other factors to think about when trying to give someone an answer to ‘How long will the SEO take to work’ including

    • how long the site has been around for.
    • how much (if any) SEO you’ve had done on it previously.
    • what shape the website is in.
    • how much content is on it.
    • its link profile and a number of other SEO factors.

    No two websites are the same and that’s why it’s so important to get a unique review and audit of your site before starting any SEO service.

    Many experts, including ourselves, will tell you that it takes 4-6 months minimum to start seeing results from a good SEO practice. This is generally the case, however, like stated previously, every website is different and this figure can be more or less depending on the initial audit and review of your website.

    Many people expect to see all of their dreams come true within a week. With SEO, this isn’t the case. Studies have also shown that most companies underestimate the time and money that goes into good SEO services and unfortunately, a lot of them drop off after just a few short months or less as they weren’t getting the results they thought they would. If we could just ask you to take into consideration everything we’ve said here and give SEO a very bare minimum of 6 months before you expect to see good results.

    SEO, when properly invested in and done correctly is one of the best ROI’s (return on investments) out there. Just make sure you get all the information you need before making your decision.

    If you’d like to take a look around our SEO services, please visit www.seo365.eu and contact us today for your website review.

  • Responsive Web Design... Reasons to upgrade!

    landscape2

    Is your website in danger of dropping off the search engine results pages?

    Google launched an update last year stating that they were going to start to favour websites which were mobile friendly. According to Moz.com, the number of mobile-friendly web pages in mobile search results increased by two percentage points (from 70% to 72%) after the original update rolled out.

    Responsive Web Design can also improve SEO (search engine optimisation) and increase conversion rates. Local search is becoming increasingly popular (on mobile phones) so having a responsive website will increase the ability of your website to be found by local users.

    Responsive Web Design (RWD) is simply an approach of laying-out and coding a website so that the website provides an optimal viewing experience, ease of reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling across a wide range of devices (including desktop computer monitors, tablets and mobile phones).

    Having a responsive site can benefit you in a few ways:

    Google Factor:

    Google recommends a responsive approach for SEO. Managing the SEO for multiple mobile and desktop sites can be difficult and has been proven to be less effective compared to a responsive site. Responsive sites avoid duplicate content. Webmasters who create mobile versions of their website usually just duplicate the content from the main website. By doing so, this immediately removes all the credibility of the mobile site from an SEO perspective.

    Note from MD: There are also whisperings from Google that they will be creating a mobile only search engine for mobile devices which will have a massive effect on non-mobile friendly businesses.

    Better, faster, smarter user experience:

    Putting your customer first is key and ensuring that their experience on your site is the best it can possibly be. Having a responsive and mobile friendly site means that the user can enjoy the site to its full potential regardless of what device they're using to view it on.

    Cost effective:

    Even though initially responsive sites take a little longer to put together, they survive a lot longer and future management, support and upgrades only need to be applied to one place which saves time and money.

    Improve conversion rates:

    An optimised and consistent site, no matter what platform it’s viewed on, provides a better experience for the user which is more likely to lead to them engaging with you.

    If you want to see some of our recently launched responsive sites please visit our portfolio

    If you think it's time you finally made the change to your website, please contact us!

  • What are the benefits of Social Media Marketing?

    Over the past few years, social media has grown enormously, and more and more people are using it to benefit their business. To show how quickly social media has grown; Facebook was founded back in 2004 and now has over 44 billion monthly active users and 936 million active daily users. Twitter was founded in 2006 and currently has over 270 million active monthly users. Instagram launched in 2010 and now has over 300 million active monthly users. It has grown over 50% in a year and is now bigger than Twitter!

     

    Here are some benefits of social media for your business: 

     

    - An easy way to learn about your audience

    The key to success in any business is knowing your audience. Using social media makes this possible and very easy to do, with the use of Twitter Analytics and Facebook Insights. You have access to useful information right at your fingertips. You can learn dominant languages spoken by your social media audience as well as their age, gender and popular interests. By knowing this information it allows you to cater your campaigns and product offers to your target audience which will provide you a better return on investment.

    - Higher conversion rates

    It’s a very common fact that people like doing business with other people, not with companies. Having various social media networks for your business and being active and engaging on them humanizes your brand. In addition, studies have shown that “Social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing. (State of Inbound Marketing, 2012)”. Having a higher number of social media followers tends to improve trust and credibility in your brand, representing social proof.

    - Increases brand recognition

    Using social media for business has allowed companies to increase their brand awareness and the reach of their brand for a long time. Every tweet, post and image you send is just another opportunity for someone new to hear about your amazing brand and the products or service that you sell. Once your social followers grow and people start to share your content is when your brand awareness really grows. As soon as your post is seen by someone who does not currently follow you on the social network is when your post becomes ‘viral’… Cool hey!

    - Improved SEO

    SEO is the best way to capture relevant traffic from search engines, but the requirements for success are always changing. Social media helps you easily direct people to your site as well as acting as a “brand signal” to search engines that your brand is legitimate, credible, and trustworthy. Having a strong social media presence is almost mandatory as Google now takes your social media networks into consideration when calculation their rankings.

    - Customer service platform

    It’s a proven fact that the majority of customers will turn to social media when they’re had a really positive or a really negative experience with a company. Once a complaint is on their social media, you can’t delete it. The best thing you can do is respond to it in the best possible way and try to rectify the initial complaint. Whenever you receive positive feedback, we’d suggest that you try to engage with as many as you can, thank them for their positive feedback and possible suggest another similar product/service which you think they would also like!

    - Expand your audience

    Social networks allow you to engage with your current customers as well as seeking out potential customers. Twitter, for example, allows you to search or specific keywords and will pull up every single tweet with those keywords in. You can then choose to only see the tweets that were sent near to your location. Let’s say for instance that you’ve just opened a new coffee shop in a town centre, you could search in Twitter for people tweeting ‘I need a coffee’ and filter the results for your location. This allows you to then interact with all the people near you who are wanting what you sell – what more do you need?

    If you want more information or would like to jump on the Social Media band-wagon, Please contact us and we will see how we can help boost your enquiries and sales through the power of social media marketing!
  • Responsive Design… What’s It All About?

    Responsive Web Design is very important, mainly to reach a wider audience, improve SEO, increase conversion rates and to be in sync with the latest trends in web design.

    Responsive Web Design (RWD) is simply an approach of laying-out and coding a website so that the website provides an optimal viewing experience, ease of reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling across a wide range of devices (including desktop computer monitors, tablets and mobile phones).

    Having a responsive site can benefit you in a few ways:

    • Better, faster, smarter user experience

    Putting your customer first is key and ensuring that their experience on your site is the best it can possibly be. Having a responsive and mobile friendly site means that the user can enjoy the site to its full potential no regardless of what device their using to view it on.

    • Cost effective

    Even though initially, responsive sites take a little longer to put together, they survive a lot longer and management, support and upgrades only need to be applied to one place which saves time and money.

    • SEO optimised

    Google recommends a responsive approach for SEO. Managing the SEO for multiple mobile and desktop sites can be difficult and has been proven to be less effective compared to a responsive site.

    • Improve conversion rates

    An optimised and consistent site, no matter what platform it’s viewed on, provides a better experience for the user which is more likely to lead to them engaging with you.

     

    If you want to talk to us a little bit more about responsive web design or maybe you have a site that you’re wanting to make responsive, please contact us

     

    responsive1 responsive2 responsive3
  • How to choose the right web company

    Last week we received a phone call from a lady looking to transfer her services to us.  Whilst we are delighted to take on new customers a phrase she used set off a few alarm bells and got us thinking.  She said “you will be the 4th web company I have worked with in 3 years”.  So the big question is, has she been really unlucky and chosen the wrong companies, perhaps by not doing the right research or are her expectations and what she is being promised unrealistic?  I will let you know the answer to that later in the blog.

    So, how do you go about choosing the right web company?  Creating a quality website or upgrading your current site, if done correctly, won’t be cheap and this is a good place to start when choosing your web company.

    Know your budget

    We would suggest that you set out a budget of how much you are looking to spend and choose a company that can support this.  If you are a new starter, with limited funds then there are some companies that will do you a website for under £200.  This will give you a presence and may be a good starting point.  After all, with 50% of businesses failing in the first 12 months it makes sense not to stretch yourself too far.  That said, when dealing with the companies that produce this type of site we strongly suggest you read the small print and ensure there are no separation charges.  Also ensure the domain name is registered in your name as again there have been incidences of excessive fees to transfer the domain.

    When considering your budget, remember to factor in some ongoing marketing costs.  Whether this is for Search Engine Optimisation, Google AdWords, E-Mail campaigns or social media. It’s great to have a really nice website but if no one is seeing it and making enquiries then you will end up with a very nice folly.

    Do your research

    There are many web companies offering the world but sadly, the days of the .com millionaire are long gone, unless of course you come up with the next big App or new social media platform.  We suggest when choosing the company you want to work with, do your research and ask for the following;

    • Do they have any success stories of companies they have transformed and created a significant return on investment?
    • Do they have any testimonials or case studies they can share?
    • Can we contact ‘ANY’ of your clients for feedback? This is a great question as many businesses will point you towards their favoured clients and maybe not those who have posed challenges.

    Get Technical

    There are a lot of companies such as Graphic Designers and IT companies who have bolted web on as a service. Whilst this is not a bad thing we have seen many incidences where open source software such as WordPress, Drupal or Joomla has been used to create quick and easy websites. These can look good but if they are not hosted properly or the security is not updated then this leaves the site open to malicious software that can damage your reputation and in some cases get your site taken offline.  Always ensure the person designing your site understands the technical elements so ask them what security measures are in place? And what back up procedures do you have?

    Ask lots of questions

    When I started the business I was always mindful of what would happen to my customers if I got hit by a bus.  But more seriously when working on my own I was the sales guy, marketing chap, project manager, accounts department and PR and it amazed me how I actually got work done.  It occurred to me as I was sat in a meeting that I really wanted it to end quickly because I had another deadline to meet. My point is, it’s always good to know the answers to the ‘what if’ questions, especially when dealing with people who are working on their own.

    Here are some good questions to ask;

    • How do I get in touch out of hours if I have a problem?
    • What support do I have if you get Ill?
    • Who owns the website once completed?
    • Do I get a copy of my website or access to backups?
    • Where are your websites hosted? UK or Abroad?

    Ask for Recommendations

    Of course the best way to get the right company is to ask for recommendations. Business contacts and friends will be able to give you the low down on the right companies to use. They will also tell you their shortfalls which might not be a show stopper but certainly gives you a good insight into the company and ideas for the right questions to ask.  We have built our company on word of mouth recommendations and our aim when creating a site is for you to be so impressed that you refer us on.  This is our best and most effective marketing tool as it provides a win-win situation.

    Now I said I would answer the question about the lady who said we would be the 4th company in 3 years.  Well it turns out we won’t.  She mentioned a few web companies she had previously worked with, they were good companies with strong reputations. Unfortunately, we decided there was only one common denominator and politely declined.

  • Boost SEO With Social Signals!

    Bruce says… Recently at 365 Towers, we have noticed a rise in demand for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) services. As well as all the clever tricks that our in-house team apply to your website, we have observed that one of the biggest weightings on SEO is in fact the powerful tool of Social Media. Social Media boosts SEO in two different ways:

    • Social Signals
    • Backlinking

    So, if your website’s linked social media channels regularly do both of these SEO-boosting techniques, Google will reward you with a higher search engine rank. Backlinks are pretty self-explanatory – they are links that directly link back to your website from other websites. For example, if you write a tweet promoting one of the services or products and pop in a link to the relevant webpage, anyone who clicks on this link will be backlinked through to your website. This is effective because Google boosts your website’s creditability if it regularly sees a major website linking directly back to it. Social Signals, however, are a bit less talked about. In basic terms, if you want search engines to like your website, you need your social media channels (a.k.a your Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn profile) to give off good social signals. These are essentially the interaction and engagement that you provoke through your various social media networks. For example, on Facebook, if someone likes or shares your post, this is giving off excellent social signals from your page. It demonstrates that users are not only viewing your content but also sharing it with their network and essentially bookmarking it for future reference. In terms of Twitter, social signals can be given off from mentions, retweets and links within these distributed tweets. If your tweets are popular with a large number of high profile users, this bodes extremely well for your profile and the website it is linked to. Various other social media channels can give off various SEO-boosting Social Signals including LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest and Flickr. However, this is not something you can cheat your way through! Google will analyse the quality of any Social Signals and the channel they’ve derived from and if it appears you’ve simply bought your likes or spammed your way to a good following, they will as a result penalise your search engine ranking. So – what are you waiting for?! Get interacting, liking and sharing and before you know it you’ll be giving off excellent social signals that can effectively boost your search engine rank. If time is in short supply for you and your business, Design365 can offer Social Media Management to increase your social signals, backlinks and general engagement. If this is something you’d be interested in, please either call us on 01325 311 909 or email us at sales@design365.co.uk. We look forward to hearing from you :)

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