Did You Update Your Website Per Google's Changes in 2015?

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Did You Update Your Website Per Google’s Changes in 2015?

Google’s 2015 Update Affects Mobile Search Results. Is Your Website Ready?

Stop what you’re doing now and read this. It’s THAT important!

These 3 Quick Steps Will Increase Your Mobile Search Results on Google and you need to be in compliance.

On April 21st, 2015, Google rolled out an update that will make mobile friendliness a bigger part of its algorithm. If you don’t think this is a big deal, think again.

Why? Because Google is saying the mobile update will have a bigger impact than its Panda update.

Should you be concerned about this update? Absolutely!
google-update-hits-site-rankings-300x180

Here’s why, and a few suggestions to implement to make sure you can take full advantage of this very important Google update.

Step #1: Make sure your website is mobile-friendly and responsive. It’s a morale imperative!

It’s generally not the best idea to create a separate website just for mobile visitors. The main reason you will want to avoid this approach is because updates to your main site won’t appear on your mobile site.

With responsive design, this is no longer a concern. A responsive design will automatically adapt your site to the size of a person’s screen, including all mobile devices.

When you begin creating or update a responsive web design, I suggest you read this blog post as it will guide you on how to properly design a site that works the best.

Step #2: Speed up your site

Although there are 4G cellular networks, the Internet connection on your mobile device will never be as fast as a cable connection—at least not for the next year or two.

Also, since 4G signals aren’t everywhere, some people may be loading your website over a 3G connection.

For this reason, you need your site to load quickly. Keep in mind your entire site needs to adjust its size and layout, based on the device used to access the site.

So, how do you speed up your site? I recommend you first start with testing your site using Google PageSpeed. This is Google’s own service that will check your site and offer suggestions to improve your site speed and make it load faster. The faster, the better.

If you don’t believe that site speed is important, check out this infographic that breaks down how slow site speed affects Google’s rankings. If you’re still not convinced, you can read a case study I wrote years ago on how I doubled my traffic by cleaning up my code and speeding up my site.

Google pagespeed

Here are some tips for improving site speed:

  • Content delivery network – your hosting company should have this feature. Call them to get it enabled. It puts your site on servers all over the world so that your site loads faster.
  • Fast server – pick a good hosting provider like RackSpace or WPengine. This makes the world of difference when it comes to site speed.
  • Clean up your code – hiring a good developer is well worth it as it will make your code cleaner. Messy code usually means a slower site.

Step #3: Make these changes as soon as possible.

Although Google’s update rolled out in April, you can’t expect to ignore these changes and how they will impact your ranking on Google search pages.

Why? Because Google will crawl and index any changes to your site, which takes time. The longer you wait to update your site with mobile responsiveness, the more detrimental search rankings will be for your website. If you haven’t done so already, you need to make mobile changes ASAP. This will ensure that your website gets crawled by Google with your changes in place so that you will no longer be penalized for not having a mobile-friendly website. Most importantly, your search traffic should go up when you have completed this upgrade.

Once you make enhancements and changes, you should log into Google Webmaster Tools and select your website profile to confirm your changes are acceptable per Google’s guidelines.

Once you do that, click “Crawl” in the sidebar, then click on “Fetch as Google.”

Your URL should already be there, but you can also enter subdirectories. But before you click “fetch and render,” select the drop-down menu that says “Desktop,” and select the relevant mobile option (if you are unsure, you can select all of them—one by one).

Let’s summarize…

Your time is limited. The sooner you make your website compatible with mobile devices and the sooner you reduce your load time, the higher your probability of gaining traffic during Google’s next update will be.

If you are struggling to make these changes yourself, contact us now and hire us to do it for you in a flash.

Your website has to stay in compliance with Google’s search criteria and constantly be evolving as fast as technology changes.

How do you think Google’s next update will effect websites?

I welcome your feedback and suggestions. Please leave your comments below…

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Why You Should Use Pinterest to Market Your Products and Services

Wouldn’t you just love to harness the power of a viral social media site that can send you more traffic than Twitter? How about the potential to bring you more leads than LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube combined? That’s an impressive feat. What about converting more visitors into paying customers while watching your content get repeatedly shared by fans and seeing your traffic and exposure increase exponentially? Well, that’s what Pinterest can do.

If you haven’t heard of Pinterest by know, then you’ve been living under a rock and you need to climb out from under it.

It’s one of the top 100 sites in the world with over 70 million users and it’s a visual bookmarking phenomenom. You can use Pinterest to collect ideas for projects and special interests, or just gather and share images for your guilty pleasure.

Pinterest Viewersip Chart
Take a quick look at the sheer statistical numbers of Pinterest. It’s mind-blowing how popular they are.

But should a business use Pinterest? Absolutely! Here’s several ways people are using Pinterest:

  • RECIPES
  • HOW-TO GUIDES
  • JOKES AND HUMOR
  • PROJECT WISH LIST
  • NEW PRODUCT RELEASES
  • HEALTH AND FITNESS TIPS
  • COUPONS AND DISCOUNTS
  • VISUAL PRODUCT CATALOG
  • EXCLUSIVE PRODUCT OFFERING
  • WEDDINGS, PARTIES AND EVENTS
  • THE LIST GOES ON AND ON…

Here’s a great video by MDG Advertising that provides an excellent and comprehensive review of Pinterest.

We’ve been on Pinterest for a few years. Check out our boards:

Visit Gallery Sites’s profile on Pinterest.

Hire us to get your business on Pinterest and start you off on a strategic social media marketing campaign that’s sure to bring you a steady stream of traffic right to your business.

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Reputation Management

Studies show that over 73% of people do research on a company or person before doing business with them.

What happens if a potential customer finds an untrue or slanderous statement about you or your business on the first page of Google?  Statistics indicate that you are losing business because of these bad reviews. Businesses all over the globe have been losing millions of dollars annually due to bad online reviews.

 

We all know that bad reviews can happen, even to the most successful businesses.  When they do, we can help you deal with them in a positive manner.  Negative reviews are very detrimental to a business, so you can’t afford not to fix them.  Don’t ignore them, RESTORE them with our Reputation Management services.

We offer a simple and easy solution to create positive reviews about your business and restore negative reviews for your reputation online.

Your reputation depends on it!

 

 

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SEO

If customers can’t find your business online, they will most certainly find your competition!

Search Engine Optimization, known as SEO for short, is simply onsite and offsite enhancements and strategies to help your website rank better in the search engine results pages.

It’s a known fact that people will visit websites that are at the very top of this list.  Let’s face it, we’re lazy. Nobody is going to take the time to browse through 6 or 7 pages of website results to find your business buried way down the list.  You need to be on page 1 if you have any chance at all of reaching new customers.  Top page listings are perceived by search engines as more popular, more credible, more relevant to the person doing the search.

Ever wondered why some websites rank higher than others?  It’s due to proper SEO and powerful online marketing techniques .  SEO, when used properly, will get more traffic to your business from search engines.

There are many different products, tips, tools and tricks for using SEO properly and gaining better website rankings in the process.

Our SEO services will implement everything necessary to help propel your website to the top of page one.  We’ll also promote your website throughout the vast web ecosystem as shown here:
local-search-ecosystem

 Thanks to David Mihm at GetListed.org for the updated infographic.

 

In borrowing The 6 Million Dollar Man’s famous tagline, “We can rebuild him. We have the technology. We can make him better than he was. Better…stronger…faster.”  This is what we can offer your business, by sowing your SEO seeds so you can watch your business grow.

We’ll make sure you’re splattered all over the internet.  But in a good way!

 

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QR Codes

 

What are QR codes and how can they help your business?

Quick Response codes, known as QR codes for short, have grown rapidly in popularity among the internet hemisphere and every business who has a website should be using them for marketing.

QR codes are similar to barcodes used by retailers to track inventory and price products at stores.

However, QR codes are two-dimensional (2D) matrix barcodes that can hold thousands of alphanumeric characters of information. Their ability to hold more information and their ease of use makes them practical for small businesses.

When you scan or read a QR code with your iPhone, Android or other camera-enabled Smartphone, this links to content elsewhere on the web.

QR Codes will help you engage with your customers and visitors.  They can also be used for sharing, call-to-action, tracking and marketing of many different methods.

Consumers want immediate access to what’s relevant and QR codes will make that happen.

If you’re considering using QR codes in any of your marketing campaigns, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Don’t print your QR code on glossy paper.  The reflection from the camera’s flash or overhead lighting will make reading the code impossible
  • Use an appropriate size for your code.  Sizes smaller than 1.5 inches are too hard to read.  Too big is just obnoxious and not needed.
  • Screen resolution for mobile devices range from 240×320 pixels for older BlackBerrys to 640×960 pixels for the iPhone 4.
  • Keep your mobile website lightweight, fast-loading, and don’t use Flash.  Most iOS devices can’t read it .  Also, not all smartphone users have a 4G device.
  • Keep JavaScript and HTML5 to a minimum.  Some older mobile devices still struggle with this.
  • Keep your Call-to-Action simple.  Don’t ask to fill out any long forms.  People don’t have the patience and they will end up leaving your page.

Here are a few samples of how you can use QR codes.

First and foremost, your call-to-action needs to be compelling or enticing enough to get clicked, and you should always offer one or more of the following to the visitor upon scanning in your code as the ‘prize’:

  • Exclusive content, videos or photos
  • Time-sensitive access
  • Free downloads or swag
  • “Instant Win” contests
  • Special offers, coupons or gifts
  • “Secret” information

Secret tip:  Always direct your QR code to a URL page with campaign tracking parameters so you can monitor the results.  If you send your mobile users to any website page they can’t access, it will kill your ROI and just waste your time and money, plus it will make you look stupid in the process.

Think about how your customer will see and feel with the process and keep it simple, stupid.

Here’s a great example of thinking outside the box with QR code marketing:

 

 

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Reviews and Citations

Reviews and Citations – What’s the difference?

A review is a comment, either positive, neutral, or negative that are posted in many places online.

Examples of places you can find and post reviews are: Google Places, Yelp, epinions, Yahoo Local, CitiSearch, Bing, MSN, BBB, MerchantCircle, YellowPages, SuperPages, Kudzu, Angie’s List, PowerProfiles, Localeze and more.

A citation is simply a listing in one of these s directories using exactly the same business name, address, and phone number (NAP) that was used in claiming the business listing.

Some examples of citation directories are: Judysbook, Citysearch, Insiderpages, Yellowbot, and Kudzu.

Our Reputation Management services will create reviews and citations for you on autopilot!

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What the Frick is Geotagging?

 

To best take advantage of Google Places AND your business website, you MUST implement GeoTagging! 

If you are not familiar with Geotagging, here is the quick Wikipedia definition:

“Geotagging is the process of adding geographical identification metadata to various media such as a photographs, videos, or websites. These data usually consist of latitude and longitude coordinates… “

 

Geotagging helps users find a wide variety of location-specific information. An example is finding images taken near a specific location.  Geotagging-enabled information services can be used to potentially find location-based websites, news, or other resources. In Layman’s Terms: Geotagging quite simply lets Google know where your website is located in the world.  Since Google  wants a positive “user experience” in the search results, they certainly don’t want to get a  Blockbuster Video in Brownstown, Michigan mixed up with one in Brownstown, Indiana.

Here is what you need to solve that problem.

A Geo Sitemap is usually created manually and not very easy to implement.  You will also need to have a locations.kml file.  Have you even heard of this?  Probably not.  Then you also need an accurately coded hCard address which needs to be visible on your website in the proper Google micro-format.

Still don’t have a clue?  Next, you have to let Google know you have made these essential changes to your website. Sounds real easy doesn’t it? I’m sure you’re still scratching your head!  The end result means Geotagging will maximize your Google Places listing right to the top of the search results!  And that’s what you want, right?

>> We have a push button solution for GeoTagging <<

Our Geotagging service now comes included with all of our Painted Canvas™ website packages.  You won’t have to worry about implementing this complicated process yourself.  We have a fast and easy solution for your website!

Our Geotagging solution can also be purchased separately, but it requires your website to be using the  WordPress platform in order for it to work seamlessly.

If you have a Google Places business page, this is a MUST HAVE to keep up with the latest and greatest technology tricks!

 

 

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Mobile Marketing

 

Mobile marketing isn’t the future, its NOW.  Here are some stupid  crazy stats on Mobile Marketing:

  • 4 Billion+ cellphones in the world
  • 1.08 Billion are Smartphones with internet
  • 3.05 Billion have SMS text messaging
  • By 2014 there should be more Smartphones than Desktop computers
  • Over HALF of ALL local searches are made from Smartphones!
  • 91% of Smartphone users use phones to get on social sites
  • 50% use Smartphones as primary source to search online
  • SMS lists are super powerful because unlike emails…
  • 99% of SMS messages get through to the receiver.
  • 95% + messages are read within 10 minutes of being sent
  • 91% of people who download an app will actually use it
  • Over $2.4 Billion dollars in Starbucks mobile purchases alone in 2011
  • You don’t need to be a fancy copywriter to make SMS campaigns work!

We can help you create a successful mobile marketing campaign to attract new customers and retain loyal repeat customers by using our various mobile services.  We can get your business in hands of thousands of smartphone users who need and want your services.

Get your business into the hands of your customers now. 

The question is no longer if, but WHEN our phones will become our only computer!

 

 

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Facebook Pages

Creating your own social network is easy with our services. 

Every business should use the phrase “Like” us! Facebook fan pages are easy to build, manage and update, but do you know how to market your pages? Let us create and maintain your Facebook fan page and watch your popularity grow. There are so many cool new gadgets and apps for Facebook that you probably never knew about. We know them all, and we make them work for you. Facebook is here to stay. Everyone’s on it so you should be, too.

Fan pages are free, but they are also invaluable. Have you noticed television commercials lately? There are companies out there that don’t even list a website anymore… they ask you to find them on Facebook! Think of the endless networking possibilities. There are many ways to get your name out there. You need to market yourself in every possible internet avenue. But it’s only effective if you keep up with it, and we know that’s not always easy.

Customization Options:

  • Fan Gate / iFrame Landing Page
  • iFrame mini website
  • Contest tabs/sweepstakes
  • Twitter tab
  • YouTube tab
  • Blog tab

Our social networking packages are taylor-made for the busy business owner!

 

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Social Media

Every Business Needs to Socialize to Reap New Business

Benefits of social Media

  • You can’t go anywhere these days without having a person or organization ask you to “friend” them on Facebook or without hearing about the latest “tweet” from a celebrity.  Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have become a huge phenomenon, and their function isn’t limited to social purposes alone.
  • Social networking sites are becoming increasingly applicable to businesses, particularly entrepreneurs and small business owners trying to reach new and exciting customers.  Social media has a role in the business marketplace as well.  In a business that emphasizes the importance of developing client relationships, cultivating the potential of social media can play a big role in your online presence and client attraction.
  • Establishing a presence on these sites can demonstrate your relevancy to clients and help you stay in touch with their lives.  When used appropriately, social media outlet can be a way to identify potential opportunities for new business from existing clients and build referral business.
  • As us how you should become interactive on the internet and use social media to your advantage. We will explain the potential that exists for your business and how you are leaving money on the table by ignoring an easy networking solution.

 

Social Media
Social media continues to grow rapidly, providing new ways for people and businesses to connect, share, shop, and network. 

New Users – In 2011, approximately two-thirds (65%) of adult internet users said that they use a social networking site, more than double the percentage that reported social network usage in 2008 (29%) (Pew Research Center).

Time Online – According to a 2011 Pew Internet Research survey of internet users, only email and search engine use make up a greater portion of “time online” than social networking sites.

Mobile Use – Increase in mobile phone usage has propelled social media, with nearly 40% of social media users accessing social media content directly from their mobile phones (Nielsen, 2011).

Global Users – “Across a snapshot of 10 major global markets, social networks and blogs reach over three-quarters of active internet users” (Nielsen, 2011).

 

Business Adoption of Social Media:

Direct Connections – Social media allows businesses to connect directly with customers, a potentially valuable tool that is contributing to the increase in social media advertising (Social Media Examiner, 2011).

Global Businesses – Approximately 84% of Fortune 100 companies utilize branded social media channels, while nearly 81% of the top Asian companies have expanded into branded social media channels (Burson-Marsteller, 2011).

Small Business Benefits – Social media use by small businesses in the U.S. has grown to include nearly one out of every three businesses, demonstrating rapid growth with room for further expansion (Network Solutions, 2011).

 

Our social media services will get you connected to new and existing customers on all the hottest social websites.

 

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