Archive for December, 2016

The Five Most Important Website Design Trends That Will Emerge In 2017

For non-website designers, it is nearly impossible to stay on top of the technological advances and countless new design options emerging almost daily. But you know that your website must be user-friendly and engaging on any device.

As a business owner in the digital marketing space, it is comm to become the translator for designers and coders. Here are five of the most important website design trends to help you engage visitors and achieve your website conversion goals in 2017, all of which are included in TotalWeb Partners Website Design Strategies:

  1. Responsive Website Design
  2. Semi-Flat Design
  3. Minimalism Paired with Micro-Interactions
  4. Parallax Scrolling and Interactivity
  5. Stronger Use of Typography

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Forbes – 7 SEO Trends That Will Dominate 2017

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a game that’s all about staying one step ahead of your opponents.

One of the best ways to accomplish this competitive dominance is to be aware of how search engines are changing, and adjust your content and SEO strategy before your competitors have a chance to catch up. The SEO industry is always moving, so it pays to be aware of these evolutions.

It looks like 2017 will be an interesting year for SEO, with the following trends dominating the arena:

1. The Rise of Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs).

2. The Rise of “Dense” Content.

3. Machine Learning Will Change the Way the Algorithm Works.

4. Personal Branding Will Become an SEO Secret Weapon.

5. User Experience Optimization (UEO) Will Start to Blur the Lines with SEO.

6. Apps Will Feel the Love.

7. Personal Digital Assistants will Become More Sophisticated, Changing the Way Many of us Perform Search Queries.

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How To Use Email Marketing To Boost Your SEO

There are two main components of search engine optimization (SEO): on-site and off-site optimization. With on-site optimization, you’ll be improving your site’s layout and performance, producing high-quality content, and targeting specific keywords that are relevant to your business and your audience. With off-site optimization, you’ll be posting content on external publications and building inbound links to your website.

However, there are peripheral ways to complement and enhance these efforts; for example, you can use social media to increase the popularity of your content and earn more links as a result of that increased visibility. Similarly, you can harness the power of email marketing to support and improve your campaign.

Here’s how.

Primary Goals

These primary goals are ways for your email marketing campaign to directly influence factors that have significant bearing on your rankings in search engines:

  • Inbound links. The more links you have pointing to your site, and the more diverse and high-authority sources that are hosting them, the higher your domain authority will be. Domain authority, according to Moz, “is a score (on a 100-point scale) developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engines.” As such, acquiring strong inbound links is a crucial factor in improving your SEO. You can use your email marketing campaign to specifically encourage other users to link to your latest posts, or specific pages of your site. For example, let’s say you’ve recently published a whitepaper with a truckload of important statistics you’ve gained from conducting original research. Getting this information in the hands of other users will make them more likely to link to it in the future.
  • Content promotion. You can also user your email marketing campaign to increase the visibility and performance of your content in general. For example, you can send a weekly or monthly newsletter that recaps some of your blog’s most popular posts. This increases both the visibility of these posts (potentially leading to more inbound links) as well as general traffic to your site.
  • On-site engagement. Google uses a plethora of individual traffic and engagement metrics to determine the relative “value” of a given webpage. Though the exact significance and influence of these metrics is often debated, it’s clear that having more active, engaged users (with lower bounce rates, higher time spent on page, etc.) is better for your search rankings. Keeping your email audience engaged and coming back to your site with valuable offers can help you maintain a more engaged overall audience.

Read more: How To Use Email Marketing To Boost Your SEO

Don’t Overestimate the Power of Social Media Marketing

Social media can be a great way to grow your company if you know how to go about it. People today spend a majority of their time scanning their feeds on these popular platforms. Because of this, companies are doing what they can to connect as much as possible with potential customers.

That being said, there’s a lot of information out there that suggests social media is the “be all end all” to a company’s success. Before you hop on board, though, there are a few things you need to know. We just hope you won’t get too disappointed…

Social Media Can Be a Hot Lead Generation Tool

When we tell you not to overestimate the power of social media, what we’re really saying is don’t believe what all the buzz says. Yes, if treated right, taking advantage of it can do a lot for your company. It’s certainly a great way to get a good idea of who your audience is and what they like to see from you. But, as with anything in the marketing world, it’s more about producing quality over quantity. Don’t invest so much time into possibly gaining leads from social media that you don’t have time for other things.

Likes Don’t Always Mean Leads

Getting a lot of likes on your content? That’s great, but don’t let that fool you. After all, likes are just “likes.” What you do with them says a lot more about how your company operates. Despite the popularity of social media, email marketing is still the number one way to bring in leads. You can try to engage with these potential leads via Facebook or Twitter, but the rest of the relationship building needs to be done elsewhere.

Read more: Don’t Overestimate the Power of Social Media Marketing

7 Suggestions for Better Mobile-Friendly Web Design

Recently, Google made a statement that the volume of search queries on mobile devices has now surpassed desktop. This along with their most recent algorithm updates means that much more value is being given to well-designed mobile websites. Desktop sites failing to conform to the standard are likely to witness a marked decline in SEO rankings and traffic.

So what does this mean for mobile web designers & marketers?

Well for starters, if you haven’t created a mobile website or introduced responsive features into your existing one, you are likely missing out on valuable SERPs rankings and traffic since the majority of your users will likely be visiting on their phones.

Here are 7 suggestions you need to know to update your website to modern mobile standards.

1. Understand usability
Usability is arguably the most important aspect of a mobile website, after all; would you buy an unsteerable car? The same point can be made for your website, your users don’t want to visit a site they can’t use.

You should start off by viewing your current website on your mobile. If you have to pinch in and zoom around to read everything, and it takes several attempts to navigate to a new page, you’ve gotten a clear view of the mobile experience you are offering your users.

2. A responsive website isn’t always the best answer
Depending on your current website, you may want to consider developing a responsive theme that adapts to your users’ browser or device resolution. However, sometimes this isn’t achievable and you may want to opt for a dedicated mobile website instead.

Building a separate mobile site has its benefits, for example they are often easier to develop than integrating responsiveness into your existing site and costs can often be significantly less (especially when using a third-party mobile website builder), however a separate mobile page means you will have to maintain 2 different code bases and upload content to both.

Whichever route you decide to go down, research is needed to ensure which option is more suited to your marketing and business model in the long run.

Read more: 7 Suggestions for Better Mobile-Friendly Web Design