A Simple yet Complete Infographic to Web Page Speed

While browsing the Internet, you visit various websites for collecting information. When you visit a specific page and see it loading slowly, you will naturally tend to move to a faster website, which can save you seconds. So, when doing business online, you must possess fast websites to stay in the game for long. If your page speed is less than your competitors, you may experience high bounce rates and your page ranking will tend to go down. 

Here we will learn more about the impact page speed has and how we can smartly optimize webpages for better results!

What exactly is page speed?

We can define page speed to be the total time taken by a website to display all of its content on a specific page or the time taken for a browser to receive a web server’s first byte. Many confuse page speed with “site speed,” which is, in fact, the page speed for a sample of page views on a site!

There are many reasons for a page to load slowly, such as unoptimized content, server configuration, unnecessary redirects, CSS, JavaScript, etc.

Your website’s page speed can be evaluated with Google’s PageSpeed Insights.  It is a free tool provided by Google, which allows you to analyze the performance of your website on desktop as well as mobile!

It’s Impacts

We can all agree to the simple fact that we all prefer sites that load quickly to the ones that load slowly. Every second is important. Slow page speed can negatively affect your online business and competitors with faster webpages will get an upper edge over you. Page speed has great significance in user experience.

However, it is not a problem too difficult to solve. With a proper understanding of the issues slowing your sites down and its solutions, you are good to go! 

An infographic developed by TechWyse, an internet marketing agency based in Toronto, is designed to show the best practices to boost your page load speed. This cheat sheet is a must for marketers looking to up their business online by improving their site’s performance and rankings. 

In the initial days of the Internet, people expected sites to load slowly because that was how the world wide web was, and people also never expected much. But today, the story is different. Websites today need to load faster, and Google values fast sites more. It is not just about your search rankings. Your site’s speed can significantly contribute to the fall or improving your conversion rates

To improve your site load time, you will have to first identify the problem that is affecting your speed. If you are using PageSpeed Insight, you will get an idea of what needs to be done. Moreover, the infographic can guide you in fixing them!

Once you have done fixing the basics, you will have to start working on advanced strategies to improve the loading time of your page. Even a small fraction of a second can matter!

Author Bio

Author BioFaiz Varghese is a social media marketer at TechWyse who is a knowledge craving techy. He loves to write quality content on the internet and has a passion for his job.

The dynamics of Influencer authenticity on Instagram to drive social media marketing: A brand’s perspective 

It’s not an uphill task to acquire massive follower base if you really have the intent to do that. As things turn out, followers are generally insufficient and there’s paucity of audience, regardless of your brand or image. 

When interacting or working on a deal with influencers, corporate needs to pay minute attention to their authenticity. It starts with their very approach to influencer marketing and the messaging process. 

  • PianoHunters, one of the most professional and esteemed influencers in the industry have real followers and fans, who have genuine interest in their work/content.
  • It’s crucial to understand that a true and professional influencer will have a pervading influence over their target audience and followers. 
  • Taking social media’s growing needs into account, you need to take some time to research on the influencer you choose to rope in. 
  • You need to know more about their social media clout and influence. Following the total number of likes on their posts or their fan-following is not enough.
  • The objective is to see whether these people are fetching your desired engagement level or not.

The audience’s feedback on the influencer’s opinions is also important. As a brand, study the other companies the influencer has worked with before. Try to know the output of their marketing campaigns. Your general focus should be to establish the ingenuity and propriety of that influencer, or debunk it. 

Authenticity is the way forward

With sites like Stormlikes to get you real likes in no time, boosting the reach of an Instagram handle is a cakewalk these days. 

  • Authenticity and engagement matter more than likes and numbers. If these two are substandard, you are risking losing fans and wasting your budget. 
  • You think that the biggest asset to being an esteemed name is not to be timely, accurate or glitzy, but just to have a large fan base or/and the bandwidth to influence and lead? It’s not so. 
  • Authenticity is a very pivotal aspect of any social media marketing campaign, especially when it has an influencer in the loop. 
  • If consumers feel an obscure celebrity endorsement is duping them, your campaign will lose steam and drain your resources.

Technologically savvy consumers know the ball game of influencer marketing. They know that their beloved celeb is out there to pocket a few dollars by just uttering about a product or service on social media.

Credential checking is a must

The concept of social media marketing vis-à-vis influencer marketing is nothing new. As a brand, you need to evaluate certain attributes to get the right influencers on board. Engagement should be your main yardstick to know the reach of a celeb. 

  • A person who engages a large number of followers, propelling them to like, and comment and share posts is definitely commercially viable. 
  • To gain the followers’ trust, influencers have to be authentic. The content must showcase their true passions and forte, highlighting their niche. 

Their sponsored content shouldn’t be a sales promotion. Expertise, leadership and activity are three other crucial attributes to check in this regard.

How to Build In-Content Backlinks Effectively

Backlinks are the websites that link to your website. It is one of the most powerful ranking factors for most search engines. It will help your website to attract more organic traffic. It is one of the services you will get from top blogging services. 

It is good to get authority sites linking back to your website. The reason is that traffic that is directly related to high-quality backlinks results to better rankings. 

You should keep a close eye on Google rankings for your website. As Google crawls through the web, it particularly looks at the backlinks of your website. Therefore, you need to understand how your pages connect to each other. 

Backlinks remain as one of the most important metrics in SEO. It is tricky to get high-quality backlinks but you can use guest blogging services to overcome the challenge. Here are some tips that will help you build in-content backlinks effectively. 

Using Broken Links

One of the best ways to create one-way backlinks is by using the broken-link method. You should contact a webmaster and report the broken links on his website. You also need to recommend other websites that can replace the broken link. 

There is a high chance of getting backlinks back to your website. The reason is that you are doing the webmaster a favor by reporting the broken links. These are things that would have a negative impact on his ranking in the search engine. 

You can use special tools to discover broken links for a particular website. Introduce yourself and be friendly as you reach out to the webmaster. Inform him that some of the resources he is linking to are no longer available. 

You need to give him the actual location of the broken links so that he can find them with a lot of ease. Your website should be among the alternative to replace the broken links. Don’t be greedy but rather helpful if you want to earn a backlink from the blogger.

However, the webmaster may refuse to link back to you for one reason or another. The good thing is that most of the cases will always be successful. 

Backlinks through Infographics

Backlinks will help you bring valuable traffic to your website and gain valuable backlinks. The beauty about infographics is that they are easy to share and understand. 

All internet users love visual data which increases the demand for infographics. You have to be careful when choosing infographics. Each of them should have an interesting and unique story for your target audience. 

Follow the topics that are currently trending to understand the type of information internet users want to hear. Use this statistical data to create your infographics. 

You can start by researching and gathering the data that you will use for the content. From here, get someone to help you with the visuals. Creating infographics should not be that expensive. 

You can earn more than ten backlinks from each infographics piece. It is one of the cheapest ways to get high-quality backlinks. So many freelancers will help you create great infographics for your outreach. 

Once the infographics stand out on your website, you can begin to distribute it. There are so many infographics directories where you can make your submissions.  

Look for webmaster who have linked to similar infographics and do an email outreach to them. Also check for people who have shared similar infographics in their social media platforms. Look for an intelligent way of getting feedback about your infographics from them. 

You will end up getting high quality backlinks for your infographics and hence website. If you are not sure of the best starting point, you will need to hire reputable guest blogging services for assistance. 

Use Guest Articles to Your Advantage

The most effective way to reach out to a new audience is guest blogging. When you publish articles on authoritative sites, you will bring your content to new readers and increase your exposure. Apart from gaining backlinks, guest posting will also increase your online reputation and social media followers. 

Guest blogging leverages your relations and expands your audience. Once readers get to know about your website, they will begin to link back to it. Guest blogging services use this approach to help you get high-quality backlinks. 

Spy on Your Competitors

Any person who seriously wants to gain organic traffic should stay up to date with the competition. Spy your competitors online and look for the techniques they are using to build or earn links. 

You can choose to follow them on social media or subscribe to their email newsletters. You can also catch up with the new content of the competitors by setting Google alerts for “site: yourcompetitor.com” keyword. 

You should also know what and when backlinks your competitors are earning or building. It will help you replicate their quality backlinks and get to know the techniques they use to promote their website. It they use guest blogging to get link, try and become a guest author on similar websites. 

If guest reviews is the source of their links, contact the bloggers and let them try your tools. You may end up getting some reviews from then. 

One of the tools to use in monitoring your competitors is Monitor Backlinks. It can expose you to so many link building opportunities. However, the best way forward is to use reputable link building services. 

Building Internal Links

Internal links play a critical role in running a successful blog. These are passing juice and you can utilize your anchor text. If you have an excellent internal linking structure in place, users will be able to navigate through your website. 

It is an excellent way of increasing the overall experience that you give to your users. Even though you need to add internal links on your blog manually, there are some tools that can help you out. Most guest blogging services use this technique to help customers get high-quality in-content backlinks. 

Conclusion

The other techniques to build in-content backlinks are promoting your content, writing testimonials, contacting important bloggers and journalists, get interviewed, and donating among others. These strategies produce excellent results as long as you use them well. 

You will not fail to earn high-quality links as long as you use the right resources. After building the backlinks, you have to do all you can to retain them. Use tools like Majestic, Ahrefs, and Monitor backlinks to track the links on your website. 

Capture Your Instagram Audience And Engage With Them Through Gleam

If you want to organize powerful and pervading Instagram giveaways and contests, you know you’re on the right track of engaging your audience. Gleam helps you run syncopated campaigns that attract viewers, engage them and grow your brand. 

  • There are 10 ways to enter the groove. These are logging in or entering using Instagram, telling them about your idea of IG contest, see over 40 gleam tips and tricks for your next contest, and visiting Nike on IG and viewing the photo on Instagram.
  • You can also view the same video on the platform, select video or image from Instagram, see or set an example from UGC Instagram Gallery, and refer pals for additional entries and signup to build a similar campaign. 
  • So, why should you use Gleam for your IG contests? The app has been around since its very advent. 
  • It has been working closely with a large following to bring the best features.
  • It has powerful and pro-active Instagram options. By building exposure, you can reward your followers, invariably growing your base with compelling IG-entry actions.
  • You can track entries and select the winners. You can run smooth campaigns with an automated process of entry selection and validation.
  • It has a manual or random winner assortment. You can collect entries devoid of friction. 
  • Collect them from comments, mentions and hashtags sans users having to leave the section.
  • You can also present your submissions by using the stylish and compact galleries, and displaying a variety of contest entries. 

The business growth engine

Gleam provides a more engaging and robust content. The app features sweepstakes, which you will not find in Rafflecopter. 

  • Gleam ensures each customer that in every contest you participate in, it will result in the growth and cultivation of your prospects. 
  • You can launch a contest with this tool to achieve your objectives, regardless of it having anything to do with your social media followers or email list. Many users pay for Instagram views by registering as active members in sites like stormlikes.
  • It’s easy to add entry methods. The method is quick and simple. The drag-to-drop functionality is very quick. 
  • You can select the type of entries you seek. They offer an assortment of entry modalities. You can then order them as your preference.
  • One of its unique features is that, unlike most other platforms, Gleam entails a verification for each action. The app tracks you on the basis of your completion of giveaway actions.
  • It helps you obtain qualified and real data, saving you time. You don’t need to dig through the avalanche of entries that are yet to fulfill their requirements.
  • If you want, you can set certain entry actions as repeatable stuff each day. You can reward your active viewers by allowing them to share or tweet on FB regularly for more points.
  • Gleam also helps you to embed or mark a YouTube video to develop its interactive features. It shows your visitors what they can clinch or how they can step into your giveaway.

Entering Gleam giveaways

If you have seen numerous online competitions, you probably know about Gleam tools and widgets. You use them on websites, blogs, and FB pages. 

  • Gleam giveaways entail 1-20 entry tasks, which can be both optional and mandatory.
  • When a giveaway ends, it randomly chooses a winner from its entries. The concerned promoter connects the person via email. 
  • The promoter can also display the name and picture of the winner on Gleam widget.
  • Gleam giveaways are comparatively a lot quicker because you can perform tweeting tasks with just one click. 
  • You don’t need to copy and paste links for that matter. 
  • As an entrant, although it’s for you, it also makes things harder for the concerned promoter to evaluate entries after the procedure.
  • That’s precisely why bloggers who want to run multi-tasking giveaways, generally prefer Rafflecopter. 
  • However, the majority of promoters and compers prefer the feel and look of Gleam. 

Know the viability

You can find many marketers using giveaways as a primetime tool for building their lists. Although it’s good and reliable strategy, it doesn’t guarantee high ROI because these lists also comprise individuals with zero interest in your product/niche.

They only participated because of the free nature of the giveaway. Considering this backdrop, experts ask you to use Gleam contests to grow and sustain your social media following. 

  • If your contest is getting sponsors, you can also use it as an incentive to give more social media space and exposure to those sponsors.
  • In addition to creating an email list, Gleam also provides you with an option to expand your social media engagement or/and following. 
  • It supports every major social networking domain, which include Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook, and others.
  • You need to remember that Bleam is not just a blogging tool. It’s the perfect choice for internet marketers and entrepreneurs, who are either promoting a product (SaaS) or launching a tool/product.
  • The best part is it has numerous sample contests that can give you a good idea of possible components for your next and first giveaway.
  • With the superb Gleam features, you have endless possibilities. 
  • A contest starts by creating a Gleam account. After entering the dashboard, you can start giving a giveaway in two main ways.
  • You can copy a proper giveaway idea from underlying competitions. You can also create a brand-new contest from scratch. 

It only takes a few steps to set up a giveaway. Use the locations and language bar to confine your giveaway to a specific area or geo-location. It can really be useful for you in certain scenarios.

Accelerating interactions on social media

If you do a market survey, you’ll find that Gleam is the most common software for budding entrepreneurs on Instagram. The thriving giveaway platform engages your current followers, propelling them to post about your giveaway. 

It also causes new followers and customers to interact with the process and share the product. It’s share entry option is truly viral. It’s an option that drives your followers or customers to invite their pals to join in on your giveaway. 

Author bio

Karen Anthony is an Instagram and social media marketing analyst having years of experience and knowledge. She is passionate about new gadgets & technology.

Top 5 Mistakes Businesses Make Before Starting SEO

The astute business owner doesn’t know all the technical details about Accounting, Compliance Laws or Search Engine Optimisation, but they have taken the time to read enough to make an informed business decision. Many businesses fail SEO before they even start due to one or more of these top 5 mistakes. 

Mistake #1: You’re Not Prepared To Invest Enough

Some businesses are too afraid to take the plunge and invest a reasonable amount of money in their business to see a reasonable return on their investment. Rather than investing enough to facilitate a decent digital marketing campaign which includes blogging, link building, paid ads they choose the cheap option, they dip their toes in before they leap (if they ever do), only to generate mediocre results at best. Then to complain about digital marketing, SEO, paid ads don’t work. Business, like your savings account, requires investment to grow. 

Your competition are more dedicated to building their business than you are, they’re investing more time and more money in getting ahead of you which is why they rank higher than you do. Often you’ll find a few key businesses in each industry who know how valuable the top 3 

rankings are and will invest a significant portion of their profits to stay there. The question is, how do you expect to beat them? 

Mistake #2: You haven’t done your due diligence.

In every industry, there are good and bad, ethical and unethical, hardworking and lazy, overpriced and underpriced SEO providers. It’s your job to navigate through the cowboys and hobbyists to find a good, reliable, trustworthy marketing agency who can deliver your business results. 

Your Due Diligence:

Do your due diligence before you start SEO, you owe it to yourself and your business deserves it. 

  • Obtain at least 3 proposals 
  • Research the company you’re planning to use 
  • Meet with them and get to know them 
  • Understand the strategy they’re going to use to get you to the top 
  • Find out why you’re ranked where you are and more importantly why your competition are ranked where they are 

Once you’ve ticked all the boxes, invest and commit to your marketing strategy for the medium to long term. 

How to mitigate your risk of choosing a bad company and wasting money?

  • Don’t sign a lengthy contract, most SEO companies offer month to month contracts. 
  • Read your reports thoroughly each month (you absolutely must know what Click- Through Rates, Conversion Rates, Impressions, Clicks and Rankings mean). 
  • Speak to your account manager each month, ask questions about the campaign. 

Mistake #3: Your Expectations Are Unrealistic

Expecting SEO Can Be Finished

SEO is not a one-off expense, it requires ongoing work and maintenance. Once you reach rank 1, it won’t stop your competition coming after you. You need to maintain your rankings and break as far ahead of them as you can to hold them. 

Expecting Cheap SEO To Work

‘You get what you pay for’ is particularly true for Search Engine Optimisation. When your competition is investing in a quality, experienced and qualified SEO agency and you’re investing in the cheapest SEO program you could find. Chances are they’re going to beat you, time and time again. 

Expecting Results Too Soon

If you’re not committed to results medium-long term, SEO is not for you. Many businesses give up far too early and complain SEO is dead, or SEO doesn’t work. It’s often when they are so close to breaking through. You must first break through the entry barrier to reach page 1. 

Expecting SEO To Work Like Magic

SEO is a revolutionary for businesses, it has the power to transform the backyard business into a booming national company. It’s not a magic wand, it’s backed by experience, education, dedicated and habitual hard work. 

Expecting You’re The Only Business Doing SEO

SEO does not happen in a vacuum. Your competition are hiring SEO’s and they are performing SEO. The question is, how are you going to outsmart them? How are you going to outperform them? Don’t panic. Your rankings will go down as they go up. 

Mistake #4: Not Knowing Enough About What You’re Investing In

If you don’t know enough about what you’re investing in, how will you know whether the work being done is any good or not? You should understand the basics of SEO. Whether your business is moving in a positive direction (improved rankings, increased traffic, more customers) and whether the SEO methods being used to promote your business are compliant with Search Engines and best practices 

Not All SEO Is Good

There is SEO that will build your business an SEO that will break it, sometimes irreversibly. SEO companies employ different methods to improve businesses rankings. Some companies employ methods that are disapproved of by Search Engines, methods that are used to artificially improve your rankings. Buying links from low-quality websites is one of these methods, which can cause your website to be penalised in the search results. Worse if these methods are used for an extended period of time the links may be too time-consuming to remove, or not able to be removed at all. You must know and understand what methods will be used to rank your website before you start. 

Mistake #5 Not committing medium-long term

The Entry Barrier

There is a minimum amount of time and money required to be spent optimising and marketing your website to reach page 1 and the top 3 positions. Take for example the top 10 businesses on 

the first page of Google in your industry have spent on average 4-12 months performing SEO. To compete with them, you will also need to spend the same amount of time and money, the Gold Coast SEO Experts call this the ‘entry barrier’ (unless of course, you hire a more experienced and qualified Search Engine Optimiser than they did – even though the best SEO have their limitations). 

The entry barrier is different for each industry and is greatly determined by the type of service, competition and profitability of the service. We find in high-profit industries businesses are more prepared to invest time, money and resources in their marketing as the returns for their investment are higher. To beat your competition you need to break through the entry barrier by investing more time, money and resources than they have. 

SEO takes time. Google advises 4-12 months before you start seeing results! This is because Google has anti-spam factors built into their system to stop unethical businesses gaming the system and the entry barrier made up by existing businesses. 

Nothing in business is guaranteed, failures happen but also great successes. Don’t expect to invest your spare change into SEO and believe you’re going to take over the market just because you’ve ticked the SEO box on your to-do list. Give your business and SEO the respect and attention it deserves. 

seo

3 Ways of Boosting SEO for the Long-Term

seo

Search engine optimization is a vital concern for any website operating today. Without a coherent and consistent SEO strategy, businesses are doomed to languish in online obscurity. Below are 3 ways of boosting your SEO that lead to a long-term increase that you can easily sustain.

Produce Engaging Content

Producing legitimately useful and high-quality content is one of the most effective ways of raising your SEO in a sustainable way. Once you have cracked the formula for producing popular content within your space, you then need to develop a regular schedule for publishing it. Good content that is published regularly will maximize audience engagement and encourage your readers to like and share your content with others.

If you can convince other reputable websites to link back to yours, then this will further enhance your SEO and is another measure you can take that is relatively easy to sustain over the long term.

Write for Your Target Audience

In order to produce content that is engaging and which captivates your audience, you need to have a good idea of exactly who your audience is. The better your understanding of your target demographics, the easier it will be to target your blog posts towards these people.

Note that producing more targeted content does not mean that you can’t still try to reach out to different people with your website content. By producing targeted articles on a diverse range of different subjects, you can cater equally well to both your idealized target audience and to similar audiences who may also be interested in your content.

Add a Blog to Your Website

Adding a blog to your website provides you with a simple way of giving your SEO and organic boost. If you take the time to cultivate a following for your blog, you can end up with a significant and long-lasting search engine optimization boost. A blog that is constantly adding new quality content will draw in traffic all on its own. It also presents you with a perfect opportunity to boost your SEO for your most important target keywords.

Adding a blog to a website is easy; it requires only a small initial investment in time and money. You will need to regularly update your blog in order for it to be effective, but the benefits of a healthy blog are more than worth it.

Adding a blog to your website can elevate it from a simple e-commerce store or business website to an authoritative source of information for your users. Take the example of Altium, developers of PCB design software. Their website contains lots of content like this article for those who want to learn PCB layout design online. This kind of content, that is relevant to the target niche and which provides value to them, is the kind of content that you want to be producing.

Ensuring that you maintain as high an SEO score as possible should be an ongoing concern for any business website. Don’t settle for short-term SEO improvements; focus on cultivating a sustainable long-term approach. After a while, your SEO will become self-sustaining. However, you need to continue to keep an eye on it and intervene if it starts to slip.

Investing in SEO website design: The right step towards high sales, more conversions, and lower bounce rates

When you check out a business online, what do you notice first? The website design is the first thing that speaks to us about the brand.

Say, a prominent brand like H&M suddenly changed its website colors, typography, logo, and layout. Would you feel the same way about the brand like you do now?

It is easy to say “Yes,” but think about a site that has recently undergone a significant overhaul. Maybe you loved to spend time on the site browsing the product, reading the blogs, and commenting on them too. Now that the layout has changed and the navigation is different, it feels like an alien space.

The website of an organization is a significant part of its identity. Think of it as the recognizable face of your business that can directly interact with your target consumers. 

Well-designed websites assume higher ranks as compared to the sites with complex navigation or scattered elements. Simpler navigation and design are ideal for search engine friendliness. Google search engine bots will always be able to access your pages, content, and information. That makes it much easier for the search engine to rank your site for relevant search terms.

Does website design influence your site traffic?

Business sites and eCommerce sites require organic traffic. Research shows that the traffic that comes directly from the Google SERP is much easier to convert as compared to the traffic from paid ads or sponsored placements. Your website design can directly influence your site SEO before you even realize it!

High organic traffic, high dwell time, and impressive conversion rates create a positive feedback loop. These factors strengthen the ranking signal with further boosts the ranking and visibility of a website.

How does your site design influence your visitors?

Your website design influences more than you apparently notice. It will determine how fast or slow your site loads. The loading time is inversely proportional to the number of value-adding visitors. 

That means – over 64% of your visitors will leave if your website takes longer than 4 seconds to load. Any site that manages to finish loading in the first 3 seconds manages to hold on to the organic traffic for conversion. With a high bounce rate, you may have to say goodbye to most of your contributing visitors.

Smartphone users don’t have the time to wait around, especially when hundreds of businesses based out of Toronto are offering similar products.

How do some sites rank higher than more prominent company sites?

Google only cares about companies that care about its customers. Therefore, it is not unusual to see some of the not-so-well-known companies from Toronto line up at the top of a SERP if they have impressive website designs. Finally, smaller businesses and startups can one-up the corporate giants of Toronto, Canada.

With easy-to-afford, but highly diverse website designs, even you can impress your target customers without blowing through your entire business capital. You should target offering your customers a satisfying navigation experience. Their experience will reflect in the average session per user, average dwell time, number of pages they visited from the initial page, number of links they clicked in the sidebars, or internal links they visited.

How will your site’s design influence your UX?

The user experience (UX) will contribute to the SEO of a website. Working with a dedicated Toronto SEO team can get your site the smoothness, simplicity, and sophistication it deserves. Hiring a new team of designers and SEO experts can seem like a costly decision for any business. If you are second-guessing your choice, here’s what you should remind yourself – 

  • Investing in UX will cut down conversion costs
  • The length of the buying cycle will shorten as your UX improves 
  • You will acquire and retain more customers due to enhanced experience
  • The positive reviews of your satisfied customers will attract more buyers
  • It will increase your sales, cross-sells and upsells. 
  • You will gain more leads as you improve your UX
  • If you engage in affiliate ad revenues, you can be sure to receive more affiliate clicks

Your website is the heart of your business. Let SEO become the pulse of your website design!

Why can’t you afford a bad website design right now?

More than 44% of your visitors will always warn their friends and family about a bad experience. More than 79% will never revisit the same website. That is in addition to the average 45-50% that already bounce off your website. More than 80% of mobile users check reviews before buying a product or a service from a business site.

A single bad review can cost your site more than 70% of the business. That is what saving a few bucks or going with a pre-designed, free website design template can do for your site. More than 90% of the ready-to-use templates use cookie-cutter coding and designs. 

Why should you consider SEO website design in 2019?

SEO website design is not a new concept. It gives SEO the credibility it deserves while keeping the aesthetics of design in mind. A high ranking website is never ugly or cluttered. That is the primary reason brutalist design never made a comeback in 2017. 

We have left the days of clumsy fonts, shocking neon banners, and cluttered webpages far behind. We are already living in a mobile-first era, where our target customers have an indomitable hunger for simplicity and speed.

Who are we kidding? We love fast-loading sites too. Every extra second we have to spend on DoorDash, or Foodora exponentially increases our “hanger.” So, it wouldn’t hurt for us to step back and take another look at how fast or slow our own sites are.  

Our website speed, layout, and design will influence more than the customer’s aesthetics. It will inspire the first impression and his or her decision to extend the stay. For a high dwell time and conversion rate, you should consider spending a few extra bucks on SEO website design instead of going with the ready-to-use templates you can find across the web.

6 Best Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses For 2019

As a savvy small business owner, you most likely know the importance of properly planned and targeted marketing for the success of your brand. However, the myriad of marketing options available means that it can be challenging to settle for a specific marketing strategy. Throw in the fact that you are in a war with more settled, larger brands with a deeper purse, and it gets even more challenging.

While designing your small business marketing strategies, it is essential to note that there is no single magic bullet that will yield all the results you need. For the best results, combine some of the best marketing strategies proven to work for businesses such as yours.  Here are some of these strategies.

Design a Logo and Build Your Business Website

As a local small business owner, 97% of your target audience will hear about your brand online. It could be from a social media post or a classified ad listing. If they are interested in your offerings, the next step after they’ve heard about the brand is to check out your website. More than 80% of people put businesses through this vetting process. 

A professionally designed website and a clean, clutter-free logo instantly enhance your brand’s reputation.  The logo also makes it easy for your audience to identify your brand online anywhere it appears. A website is the foundation of all your online marketing efforts. Don’t have a proper website? Here are a few reasons why you need one:

  • You get to control the information shared about your brand
  • You can compete with the biggest brands in your niche
  • Websites are easier to keep up to date
  • It is cheaper to run a website than to engage in traditional advertising
  • You will attract your existing customers and continually find new ones
  • Your website is available round the clock, answering customer questions (through website content) thus saving you a lot of time.

So, to start your marketing on the right footing, you need a logo and a website. Fortunately, technological advancements today means that the entry barrier to owning a properly optimized website is lower than ever.

Check Your Competitors

By understanding the competition, you can find their areas of weakness and capitalise on them in your marketing efforts.  Can you offer better pricing? Do you have a more inclusive product offering? Do you have a better marketing campaign idea?  You’ll probably never know until you analyze your competition.

How can you find your competition?

A quick search online using the same keywords that describe your business is usually enough. You can also find them through local business listings and classified ads.

For Customer Service Use Social Media

67% of consumers have reached out to businesses on social media before.  Each social mention your brand receives is more exposure and a juicy marketing opportunity.  When a consumer mentions your brand on social media, either during a complaint or a positive remark, they introduce you to their immediate social circle. How you react to that mention can go a long way to foster more goodwill with that consumer, and to generate more leads from their social circle.

To properly use social media for customer service, here are a few things you should do:

  • Respond to ALL social media comments (questions, feedback, complaints).
  • Respond as quickly as possible.
  • With complaints, have a clear plan for which ones to respond to in public or offline.
  • Social media users hate automated responses from brands. Humanise your interaction by addressing the user by their name if visible and using your initials.
  • Resist the impulse to react negatively even in the face of unwarranted provocation.
  • Use tools such as Hootsuite and Buffer to keep your social media customer service in one place.

Combine Micro Strategies

A lot of micro strategies form the crux of digital marketing for small businesses. Combine as many of them as you can for the best results.  Some of these strategies include the following:

Email Marketing

73% of millenials prefer communications from businesses in their email.  You need to use email to communicate with both your existing and new customers.  Find an email marketing tool that appeals to you and then create compelling email newsletters for your audience.  You can use email marketing to generate leads, increase sales or keep in touch with your clientele. 

PPC Advertising

When you initiate a search on Google for “wedding photography tips” for instance, the top centre, bottom left, and right-hand corners of your screen will contain adverts delivered alongside the organic search results. These adverts will most likely be from wedding photographers in your area or other businesses in the wedding niche.  When you click on the advert, the business owner pays a specific cost, hence the name Pay Per Click advertising (PPC). 

PPC is a quick way to spread the word about your business.  However, it can be costly. To ensure you are getting a good return on your investment, spend time to create a compelling landing page and target the right keywords. 

Facebook Marketing

More than two million businesses are using Facebook advertising. It is another affordable way to spread the word about your brand regardless of your target audience.  Facebook marketing works because you can target people based on their sex, location, age and other such metrics. The entire process may be overwhelming at first, but once you get the hang of it, Facebook marketing is a massive weapon in any marketing Arsenal.

Instagram Marketing

Instagram is the platform with the highest rates of engagement across all social media.  Research shows that Instagram engagement rates beat the results on other social platforms, email marketing and more.  If your business is highly visual, (think Fashion, Food and Drinks, Travel, etc.), you need to take your Instagram marketing seriously. Apart from having a solid business profile here, you should consider Instagram sponsored ads.

Other forms of micro marketing you should consider, include:

  • Twitter Marketing
  • Pinterest Marketing
  • Linkedin Marketing

A combination of these strategies will deliver immense and long term results.

Write Optimized Blog Posts

Blogging is an inexpensive way to draw traffic to your website as a small business. According to research, 80% of companies that incorporate optimized blog posts into their marketing strategy reported customer acquisition through these posts.  Optimized blogs are a powerful boost to your website’s search engine rankings. They also allow you to form relationships with new and existing customers, especially when the posts address pain-points, educate or entertain. When these customers enjoy your posts, they will share them with their audience, extending your brand’s reach.  With properly optimized blog posts, you can also quickly set up your brand as a thought leader in the niche.

Offer a Free Service

Most people are always on the hunt for bargains. A marketing message that promises free service will always garner attention. So consider offering free consultations, free quotes, buy-one-get-one-free deals and general discounts from time to time.  When done correctly, this can significantly increase your bottom line while spreading the word about your brand.

Marketing strategies need to be approached from a holistic standpoint to yield results.  With the right combinations the strategies discussed here, you can put your brand on the path to success. Remember; give your strategies enough time to blossom. Social media-based strategies and paid advertising can yield results quicker, but others like the use of blog posts will take longer.

Competitor Backlink Analysis – The Easy Way To Build Backlinks

Building backlinks is a fundamental part of any SEO strategy. 

There are lots of different methods in which to do this however there is one method that stands out from the rest and has stood the test of time.

Competitor backlink analysis.

With this method you are essentially analysing your competitors backlinks and figuring out exactly how they built their best ones. Then… you do it too.

You are taking the hard work that competitors have done and using it to create your link building strategy.

What Is Competitor Backlink Analysis?

Your competitors are more than likely bigger and have better funding than you. They will probably have teams that are dedicated to building links with a huge budget. So can you really compete with them?

Instead you can use their research against them to build the same links they have.

For example, I can run a competitor through the Ahrefs tool and I can see a list of all their backlinks and where they are coming from:

I can figure out how that link was won, whether it was a guest post or an expert roundup etc… then I can reach out to those sites with my pitch. But just make sure it’s a great pitch.

This can be done for your competitor’s whole link profile or just specific URLs you would like to outrank in the SERPs.

How To Steal Your Competitors Backlinks

There are a couple of really good backlink checker tools you can choose from and I will also give you access to my free backlink analysis spreadsheet which will tell you exactly which backlinks you should go after.

 Let’s take a closer look at the process using Ahrefs.

#1 Find Your Competitors

The first thing you need to do is find your competitors for the keyword you are wishing to rank. Just head to Google and enter your keyword:

Then make a note of the top 10 URLs of your competitors.

#2 Research Your Competitors

Now you have a list of competitors you need to find their best backlinks by using a backlink checker tool.

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a fantastic SEO tool and has become known as one of the best backlink checkers on the market. You can see a lot of data and they have a database that is usually the most often updated so you’ll be as near to realtime data as available.

Enter the first competitor URL into the search bar and once loaded, click ‘Backlinks’

Then you will see a comprehensive list of all the links that are currently pointing to that URL.

You can either use the filters to find the best backlinks to replicate or use my intelligent backlink analysis spreadsheet that will do all this for you.

#3 Analysing The Data

Ahrefs has some great filters that you can play around with to see the strongest backlinks pointing to that URL.

You can filter by:

  • Link type
  • Platform
  • Language
  • Traffic
  • Specific keywords or phrases

And even order the results to your priority. This could be:

  • Domain rating
  • URL rating
  • Referring domains
  • Linked domains
  • External links of referring page
  • Traffic
  • Keywords ranked in the top 100

Or you can load the data into my backlink analysis spreadsheet and it will do all this work for you.

Just download my spreadsheet and follow the instructions to get started. You will then have a list of the best backlinks that you should target and in what format.

This could be:

  • Guest post
  • Forum post
  • Blog comment
  • Infographic
  • Resource page
  • Expert roundup
  • Interview/podcast

#4 Creating Better Content

Leaving blog comments and contributing to forum posts are quick easy wins but for a lot of high authority links you are going to need to put in some extra effort.

So you have a list of websites to reach out to and what format you need to pitch them with…

It’s time to create some awesome content that is going to win over the website owner and add along side or even replace your competitors link.

If you already have the perfect content you can skip this step.

If not, I find the “Skyscraper” method to be particularly effective here. All you gotta do is take your competitors existing content and make something even better.

For example

  • If they have a list blog post, you can add more items and more information.
  • If they have a how to post, you can go even more in depth with lots of examples.
  • If they have a case study, you can do your own with more relevant and up to date data.

Once you have golden content ready to go – it’s time to pitch your content.

#5 Pitch The Website Owner

The way you pitch your content is really important. 

You need to grab their attention and get them to view your content without sending your email straight to the trash bin. You can guarantee that these websites receive requests like this all the time. So you need to stand out!

You can use tools like Hunter.io and Find That Lead to get the right email address to reach out to…

You will then want to create a pitch that shows them exactly why they should be linking to your content. 

Remember, people respond well to humour and they like to know they are receiving and email from another human being, not an automated program. 

So find the right balance between professional, polite and humorous.

And if you want them to even open your email you must grab their attention with an awesome subject line.

#6 Wash, Rinse & Repeat

The more you do the better the process will become as you get a good feel for each step.

You will see what kind of content gets the most attention and can use this information when creating your content strategy.

Once you have exhausted all opportunities for one keyword, you can then move onto another and start this process again.

Wrapping It Up

Taking a peek at how your competitors are building their backlinks and replicating them is an easy technique which wins you those links that are currently responsible for ranking your competitors highly in the SERPs.

Just follow the steps above and then repeat for each keyword you wish to rank for.

mattWriter: Matthew Woodward owns an award winning marketing blog which publishes SEO tutorials & case studies that help people improve their online business. He began this blog in 2012 and has been able to reach thousands of people across the world who need help with their websites.’ 

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Are you ignoring online reputation management? Ways to course correct

As a start-up business owner or successful entrepreneur, are you guilty of overlooking your brand’s online reputation management (ORM)? If yes, then you must consider it at the earliest. Most customers research a brand today before making a purchase. Hence, if the search engine has too little information or harmful information about your brand, your sales will take a bad hit.

You can conjecture several scenarios here, such as:

  • The online users might come across very little to zero data about your brand. Here the users can depend on your brand’s sales writing skills along with the guarantee you provide. Else, they also have the chance to search for any other brand that provides, what you offer. This brand might have an online reputation and presence that commands more confidence. 
  • If you have good reviews, your potential customers might conclude your brand of having an excellent reputation. 
  • The customers can come across any negative reviews from past users.

These are all the pros and cons that you need to consider. Ignoring ORM will ultimately affect your business negatively. You need to join hands with an agency to implement a productive ORM strategy. To know more, you can get in touch with an online reputation management company New York. Some of the best steps to go about it also include:

1. Leverage both negative and positive reviews

Count on the productive discussions to highlight your best services and instill more confidence in people. When it comes to the negative reviews, take them as checkpoints for improvement. When a customer writes a negative comment on social media, don’t defend it. Instead, address it and understand if there’s a scope to improve. Even the one who wrote the comment will have a positive take away from the entire experience. 

2. Leverage your favorable reputation

Do you have customers saying good things about your brand? If yes, you need to acknowledge the same publicly and express your gratitude as well. It will make the customers who share their positive feedback feel counted.  And once the customers are happy, they will promote your brand through word of mouth publicity. Hence, you will add more to your favorable ORM and customer good-will.

The ideal way to go about it is not to get fearful of asking for feedback and reviews. Your customers might have good things to share about you. Until you request and provide them a platform to share, you wouldn’t know. You can list the reviews on your social media page or website.

3. Address online complaints, low stars and bad reviews at the earliest

Don’t get complacent with low stars, bad reviews, and online complaints. Even if the ratio of complaints is less than appreciation! That will come across as a sign of over-confidence, and it might go well with your audience at large. You can ask the customer who complained as to what went wrong for him/her in the customer journey. Take note of the valid points and assure him/her of better service. 

Forgetting to pay attention to your ORM strategy will go against your brand name. Online users must have a positive image of your company and contribute to more sales.