Google’s Upcoming Transition to a Mobile-First Index

Google’s Upcoming Transition to a Mobile-First Index

In line with the world’s gradual switch from desktops and laptops to their mobile devices, Google announced that they will soon be rolling out a mobile-first index. This is good news for a lot of on-the-go users who struggle with the mobile version of most sites they frequent.

Mobile-First Index Coming to Google Search Engines

Here are some of the ways the Mobile-First index will change things for Google users.

Search Listing

Currently, Google ranks its search listings based on the desktop version of the content. So, if you’re a company who wants to do well in the world’s biggest search engine, you will tell your developers and copywriters to focus on the performance of the desktop version of the site instead of the mobile version.  Now, rankings will be based on the mobile version first, which will change things for both searchers and companies.

This move has not been a surprise. In fact, a lot of sites predicted this because more and more users are mobile only. What that means is they use no other way to access the internet than their phone. In contrast, a lot of desktop users also used their mobile devices to visit sites.

Changing Design Expectations

That fact has promoted a lot of companies to use a mobile first approach to designing their site. It seems that those companies’ decisions will now pay off because Google will be ranking based on the mobile version first, even for listings shown to desktop users. Although Google has confirmed that no changes will be made until 2018 at the earliest, some groups are already questioning this approach.

Improving Mobile Capability

For users, the most popular concern with mobile design is content and features. A lot of mobile first sites are stripped down. Even their desktop counterparts are very minimal, reducing what users can do on that site. Google encouraging companies to switch to a mobile-first design to rank higher in their search engine will encourage perfecting the mobile design and capabilities.

Conversely, site owners are worried that their ranking will fall just because they don’t have a mobile version of their site. While Google says not to worry because they’re a long way from implementing this approach, a lot of businesses are now scrambling to upgrade the mobile version of their site.

However, this is great news for mobile users. Businesses online have to learn new strategies and implement a lot of changes on their desktop first sites. They need to look at the content of their mobile site page per page and compare it to the desktop version. Expandable content needs to reassess. Even the graphics and the features of the sites will most likely change.

This is an exciting time for all sites, whether they’re mobile or desktop first. They get to revisit what makes them tick and try to translate that to the mobile version of their site, just in time for Google’s transition.

Sources:

FAQ: All about the Google mobile-first index

The Basics of AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)

The Basics of AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)

One of Google’s most recent additions to its successful products is AMP or the accelerated mobile pages. Launched last February 2016, an AMP is an open source initiative that allows sites to be beautiful, functional and profitable without compromising the user experience. It’s a lightweight version of HTML. Stripping it down allows sites to be so much faster than they once were.  If you want to understand search engines, understanding AMP is the next step.  Here’s what you need to know about Accelerated Mobile Pages.

 Understanding the Accelerated Mobile Pages Feature on Google

Since this project is expected to revolutionize mobile web surfing, Google had a lot of excited partners, including DNI (European Digital News Initiative), WordPress, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. The goal, since it was announced to the public in 2015, was to improve mobile user experience.  The idea is similar to Facebook Instant Article, only it’s available to more sites thanks to its open source format.

Because we now live in a mobile world, where people can’t wait to access information, speed is very important. Faster websites get more traffic because half of all users leave a site that doesn’t load after 3 seconds. Those which can’t keep up lose out on opportunities those users could have brought them.

Despite that fact, three-quarters of active sites take longer to load on mobile with a 3G connection than on a laptop. That means of businesses are losing users that they can convert because of how slow their page is on a mobile device. The biggest issues are slow loading pages, unresponsive functions, and ads that block the use of the page — further slowing it down.

Most people think that if the ads are removed, the site instantly so much faster. While that may be true, monetization is what’s keeping a lot of sites up. So, it’s important to strike a balance between performance and profit. That’s what AMP strives to do. It retains the quality user experience by speeding up the site, including loading all the graphics and making sure the functions work while retaining monetization.

This type of coding was designed for speed, which means it won’t be loading photos unless you scroll down to it. Incremental changes like this made all over the coding of a particular site can make so much difference.

When you use the AMP format, whatever type of site you have, your pages will load faster and it will avoid the usual user experience pitfalls — such having trouble scrolling or pressing the buttons. This format does not limit your ability to design the page to your liking, so you don’t need to compromise on the brand message or the vibe you wanted for the site.

Sources:

https://www.ampproject.org/

5 Tips for Building a Killer LinkedIn Profile

5 Tips for Building a Killer LinkedIn Profile

When it comes to social media, many professionals turn to LinkedIn to create quality connections that will advance their career and connections.  In order to stand out on LinkedIn, you need to have a killer profile.  This profile needs to work together with LinkedIn’s algorithm so that you are seen, and it needs to have the right information so that you are noticed!

Follow These 5 Social Media Tips for Building a Killer LinkedIn Profile

Here are some social media tips to ensure that your LinkedIn profile stands out in the crowd.

Be Relevant

Your summary is a brief introduction, and the first thing that employers and colleagues will see when they try to get to know you on LinkedIn.  The Headline is the first thing in your summary you need to focus on.  Your headline alone can pack quite a punch when it comes to intriguing potential followers.  Make sure it packs a punch and relates to your skills and profile.

Who Are You Looking to Reach? 

When writing your profile summary, you want to first consider your audience.  Who are you trying to reach?  Are you looking to appeal to job recruiters, a specific company you have in mind or are you an entrepreneur looking to create valuable connections?  Then, do some research on other profile summaries and see what they are saying to appeal to your audience.

Help Your Audience Find You

Use keywords you know are relevant in your profile.  People will look for those who they are trying to connect with, and if you want to be that person, you need to come up in their search.  Make sure you mention specific terms based on relevancy to your profile, so you can attract your ideal audience.

Stay Current

Make sure you are updating the information on your LinkedIn profile.  You want to use a current and professional profile picture and background photo. You also want to be sure that your languages, career skills, and position are up-to-date.  Information that doesn’t add up, or directly conflicts with what people can find on your other social media platforms, can look unprofessional and even deceitful.  Keeping your information current attracts the right people and keeps you relevant.

LinkedIn Recommendations

Social Media is all about networking, and the best way to get a recommendation is to give one.  Make sure you choose relevant people who you’ve actually worked with and don’t ever push for recommendations from people you don’t know.  

With these tips, you’ll be a LinkedIn expert in no time!  What is your favorite trick for getting noticed on LinkedIn?  Let us know in the comments below!

Sources:

https://www.thebalance.com/tips-to-make-a-better-linkedin-profile-2062332

Popular Social Media Platforms for Online Marketing

Popular Social Media Platforms for Online Marketing

When you have a business, social media is one of the fastest ways to start getting noticed.  It can also be an overwhelming adventure if you’re new to the online social scene.  The truth is, all social media platforms have their benefits and their own audience.  Eventually, the more platforms you can be seen on, the better.  However, you should always start at square one, and the best way to determine which platform is right for you is to know the major players and what they have to offer.  You could sign up for social media training courses, but a brief overview will help you learn the basics.

Social Media Training Courses Cover These Major Platforms

Here are the major social media platforms that can be used for online marketing.

Facebook

Facebook is a great platform for online marketing and the perfect stepping stone for those who are new.  You can easily transfer your personal audience to your business by inviting them to your business page, and Facebook offers a lot of features that are appealing to businesses.  Their ad campaigns have excellent targeting and are affordable, the algorithm rewards engagement, and they keep coming up with new ways to get your posts noticed by your ideal market.

Instagram

Instagram is made by the same people who bring you Facebook, but it revolves around photos!  If you are a photo-taker or in a creative field where showing is better than telling, Instagram is your jam.  This is a popular tool because it builds an audience very quickly and swiftly based on the audience that will be attracted to your account.  

YouTube

Videos are the news right now, and YouTube is arguably one of the best video platforms available.  It allows you to upload videos, do basic edits, and build a social audience of engagement through video.  Creating content and engaging with your following is the best way to build your YouTube audience.

Twitter

Can you say what you need to quickly?  Twitter is an amazing social media platform which works around “Tweets”, short simple bullets of copy that allow you to be to the point and clever with your audience.  Twitter is a great way to build an absolutely massive following because it makes engagement very easy.  If you like quick communication and have a service or product that appeals to the masses then Twitter may be for you.

SnapChat

SnapChat uses photos for people to communicate with each other on a day-to-day business.  At first, people were a little skeptical of how this could build a business, but lately, people have found massive marketing success using this platform.  The idea of people loving to do business with people they know is true, and SnapChat gives your audience an inside look at your life and your workflow.

What’s your favorite Social Media platform?  Let us know in the comments below!

Sources:

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/289286

 

Getting Seen First on Facebook

Getting Seen First on Facebook

Improving a brand’s Facebook Ad game can open a lot of doors. Social media has become one of the best strategies to promote your business, with minimal financial investment.  A strategic approach is able to increase the possibility of conversion by creating a warm market to promote your products to.

An Effective Facebook Ad Strategy Can Get You Seen Online

However, as effective as this approach is, it can be confusing for first time users. Some are not able to make full use of Facebook ads, simply because they don’t really understand how they work or how to strategize them. This is unfortunate because to truly reap the rewards of a Facebook ad strategy, you need to know what you’re doing and how to reach the people who will become buyers. To help you do that, here are some tips for targeting Facebook ads.

  • Use Basic Demographic Targeting.

This should be a no-brainer because even the most basic marketing campaigns will make sure that their targeting is limited between the bounds of age, gender, and location.  Facebook is no different.

Think of your ideal client.  Where do they live?  Are they a particular gender?  How old are they?

Although these are still broad groups, they are a great start. If you have a local plumbing company, it would reduce your cost and increase your conversion if you focused in your locality. The same goes for hair salons and clothing stores that don’t offer online ordering.

  • Seek out People who are Already Looking for What You’re Selling.

It’s a true waste of resources if you are not able to reach the people who are actively looking for your product. Fortunately, Facebook can tell you which users are in the process of purchasing a particular product or searching for a provider of a service, depending on their behavior online. You can easily target these people through the Behavior section of the ad settings.

For example, if you’re selling a mattress that promises optimal comfort, you can look up people who are looking for remedies for back pain or who have looked up “comfortable mattresses”. Taking advantage of this feature makes your ads more visible to your target audience.

  • Get to Know Your Client.

As people are diverse, so are their interests. If you have an effective profile of your customer, make sure you add in their common interests on your ad settings. Remember, this does not necessarily mean that it has to relate directly to your product.  Instead, try creating an avatar of your client. What do they like?  What are their interests?  Hobbies?

Some fashion brands, especially during winter in Europe and US add travel to the interest section of their ad settings because they want to be visible to people who might need to add to their wardrobe for their holiday plans. This section is very strategic to use and should not be confused with the “likes” targeting.

This is just a basic overview of all the possibilities with Facebook ads.  What else do you want to know about Facebook ad targeting?  Let us know in the comments below!

Sources:

http://emilyhirsh.com

Top Ways to Fail with Paid Search Ads

Top Ways to Fail with Paid Search Ads

Paid search ads are a necessary strategy when you are starting to form your SEO strategy.   As effective as pay per click ads are, they can be very intimidating for beginners. There are plenty of horror stories from small and medium enterprise owners who say that their attempt at paid search ads failed to generate.  This is primarily from a lack of experience and understanding when it comes to creating the ad itself.

Any marketing tool requires a certain skill set to pull off, and this includes paid search ads. There are a lot of benefits that come with paid search ads, and it has been effective for the companies that know what they’re doing. To help you better understand paid search ads, here are the top three ways to fail.  Keep reading and learn what to avoid!  

 Form Your SEO Strategy Avoiding These Paid Search Ad Mistakes

  • Not Understanding the Audience You Want to Target

The key here is balance and research. You really have to understand the behavior of the clients you want to target. Don’t use words that you think represent your business. Instead, use words that clients look up that may refer to your service, directly or indirectly. Remember that the prerequisite to success is being seen by an audience that is actively searching for something that you can offer them. This tool is made for a consumer centric approach, and you can use different tools (like a Keyword Planner app) to help you with that.

  • Keywords Are Not Strategic.

Finding the right keywords is half the battle with paid search ads. If you’re using generic keywords that every other brand uses, you’re bound to compete with most companies who may be spending more than you. Conversely, if you are using keywords that are too specific to your brand and don’t have historical search volumes, your paid search ad efforts will also fail.

  • Lack of Filters

You wouldn’t hand out flyers for a vegan restaurant to someone happily eating a double cheeseburger, right? Sure, some might try it, but the chances of conversion are lower. The same logic follows for paid search ads. You have to use negative keywords to filter where your paid ads show up. That way you are able to prevent them from popping up on irrelevant searched terms. That will just cost you money, with a low chance of converting the person who clicked your ad.

 Sources:

10 Common Mistakes In B2B Paid Search

 

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