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By Phase 3 Digital Agency 26 Jul, 2017
After spending time, money and effort building a website, you'll want to make sure it has the greatest possible chance of being found. In the modern era, it's unlikely your customers are just going to guess your website address. Instead, they're likely to stumble across your website thanks to the help of a search engine.

Search engines check websites and use a number of 'rules' to decide on how they should rank each website. For example, if you're a law firm in London, you'll want to show up on search engines when someone searches for 'law firms in London'. If you've followed the rules, you'll show up among the early search results, but if not, you're not going to appear.

What are the top five golden rules to be aware of when it comes to website optimization?

Give Search Engines a Map

If you're looking for the best route to a new restaurant, then it's likely you'll have a look at a map of some sort. Search engines, like humans, like having a map when they're exploring. If you can set up an XML sitemap, you'll be giving search engines information on how best to explore and then list your website in their rankings. Sites without them do not have a good chance of being ranked highly on search engine results.

What's your Keyword?

Each page on your website should have a focus keyword or phrase. Keywords and phrases are a short summary of the content of a page. For example, 'Website Optimization' could be a good keyword for this article. When creating a page, the titles, body text and images should all include the keyword you set per page.

It is not enough to stuff a page full of the keyword repeatedly in the hope search engines will rank it higher. They won't, and they'll punish you for it instead. You need a more delicate approach. Authentic content and keyword use work best.

URLs are Important

Many people forget the URL structure that you use can play an important role when it comes to optimizing your website. The URLs used for pages should include the keyword from the page they represent, and they should have a file/folder type structure - just like those in your 'My Documents' have on your PC. Both these little tips will help search engines work out how relevant your page is and figure out what the content is on the page in question.

Stay Fresh

Search engines are constantly searching to check up on websites they've already included in their rankings. Ranked websites are searched to make sure that new content is found and listed. Search engines look favorably on websites that produce fresh content on a regular basis. That means once you have a site set up, you need to put a plan in place to keep developing and adding new content.

The Battle is Never Over

SEO rules seem to change all the time as search engines change their criteria and come up with new ways of ranking websites regularly. These shifting goal posts mean even a perfectly optimized website can slip down search engine rankings if the optimization isn't kept up to date with the new rules. For the best results, you need to make sure you're always keeping on top of the news coming out of search engine companies.

Which one of those five SEO essentials for website optimization have you not been following? Which one are you going to start straight away? Contact us for a free website analysis of your business.
By Phase 3 Digital Agency 25 Jul, 2017

Having a responsive website is imperative, since mobile web browsing has overtaken desktop usage. But when your website appears completely different on a desktop than it does on a small phone screen, it’s hard to shift from catering the design for the desktop to making sure your website is designed for mobile first.  

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when creating a mobile website.

1. Keep your navigation short. Reorganize your menu so that you have as few items as possible. With the small screen size you have limited real estate above the fold, so you don’t want users having to scroll down very much when going through your navigation. You also want to make sure you are using clear and conventional icons to convey information to your users. For example, use an intuitive symbol like the plus sign to inform users that they can tap to display more options.

2. Link your contact information.  Mobile websites allow users to conveniently tap to call or tap to get directions directly from your site. Use that opportunity to your benefit to increase the chance that your visitors will interact with your business.

3. Make sure your site is fast. Mobile users have a very small attention span and have been found to be less patient when waiting for sites to load than desktop users. When designing your site, make sure you keep it as basic as possible to ensure that mobile users don’t leave your site while waiting for it to load. 

4. Your design should be simple. Mobile users are more easily distracted, since they generally visit mobile sites with a purpose and want to move on as fast as they can.  People searching on their phones are also more likely to be in an environment with a lot of distractions and do not have the patience for complicated sites.

5. Keep your content short and put more focus on visuals. It is always a good idea to include a lot of visuals on any website, but the importance of them increases for mobile visitors. More visuals will help to keep your content short, and you can communicate better with people who are on a small device with images, graphics and videos.

Need help making sure your website is designed for mobile? Contact us for a free website analysis of your business.

 

By Phase 3 Digital Agency 16 Jun, 2017

A primary business goal is always to strive for growth in the ever-changing market economy, and what better way to grow than to invest in marketing to enhance your business’ brand awareness? Better yet, why not invest in the fastest growing, and most profitable marketing sector? Digital marketing.

Digital marketing reaches the largest audiences because viewers attention is predominantly focused on the internet. People today are constantly surfing the web researching, shopping, emailing, and certainly maintaining an active presence on social media. We stay connected with our friends, family, community, and even our favorite brands and companies on social media.

Social media provides an environment in which people can interact with businesses unlike ever before. For better or worse, the public can broadcast their reviews of companies, products, services, and so much more for all to see and read. And likewise, businesses can respond to their active customers and engage with potential new clientele in an immediate fashion. This type of connectivity provides significant, and perhaps unmatched opportunities for companies to grow their brand and foster positive relationships with their customers. Here are a few concepts to keep in mind as your business ventures into the social media space:

  • Chose your channels wisely : The number of platforms and profiles available to market to your audiences on can be overwhelming, but play to your strengths and don’t spread your efforts out too thin. Establish clear outcomes and viewer demos for optimal social media success.
  • Master your bandwidth : On a related note: when selecting Facebook vs. Twitter or Instagram vs. Snapchat, be sure that you have the ability to constantly monitor, navigate and know the various best practices of each platform. Demonstrate social media savviness and avoid a #fail for your business’ presence.
  • Stimulate Shares: The key to successful social media activity for any business is to encourage engagement with your content. Generate simple, eye-catching, and most-importantly shareable posts that truly resonate with your ideal viewers.
  • Be Consistent: In order to grow your business’s brand using social media, a regular flow of familiar, yet interesting material is imperative.
    • Increase recognition by incorporating your logo or alternative branding imagery into every piece of content
    • Multiply your audience by posting regularly at alternating times, with fresh subject matter
    • Plan ahead! Reduce stress and manage your time by organizing a social media posting calendar, but be flexible enough to align with trending topics and popular news. 
By Phase 3 Digital Agency 09 Jun, 2017

In this blog entry we break down the basics of SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.

Search Engine Optimization is the process of achieving free, organic search results in Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search portals. Well-executed SEO drives site traffic to a website from general web searches.

Search engines such as Google send crawlers out to millions and millions of websites to read data and store it, in order to materialize the site later when a consumer looks for information matching that data.

While there isn’t an exact formula for making it to the top of the search engine results page (SERP), marketers and web designers alike should be focused on these key SEO factors:

  • Focus on your customer. In the most general sense, create the best web experience for your customer. What’s best for your customer inherently yields quality SEO.
  • Consistently produce robust, quality content. The quantity of links on your domain matters—make sure you are balancing quantity with trusted, keyword-friendly content.
  • Be relevant. The number of websites that link back to your site affect your page rank, though not all links are created equal. You want to be organically connected to websites that have influence in your content category.
  • Make sure your content loads quickly and securely.
  • Drive audience via other marketing channels. The more visitors to your website, the more relevant search engines will see you.
  • Understand how people are searching for your content or product offerings. Utilize common keywords at the page and domain levels.

None of these factors works exclusively. Even if your website has a solid foundation, SEO must be cultivated over time. Search Engine Land has a great Periodic Table of SEO , which visually breaks down the many contributing factors to organic search optimization.

Questions? Contact one of the experts at Phase 3 Digital Agency for a free SEO or other digital analysis of your business.


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