5 ways to drive more traffic to your website

Every company’ mission statement probably says that they do everything with only one goal – to provide what’s best for their customers, I am sure. However, I am also sure that their primary goal is to HAVE the customers that they will work for, make happy or create products for, and of course – sell to. There, I said it, but I do not mean it in a bad way. Customer is king, a business without customers is no business at all and before making customers happy, every business needs to attract them.

 

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Website optimisation

Website optimisation is the first step every business should take to build their online presence. A website needs to offer a simple navigation, look good and comply with SEO rules, otherwise, the website will end up on who knows what page of search engines and won’t get any hits or visits.

Content optimisation

Content optimisation could be considered a part of website optimisation but I listed it as a separate item due to its importance. Why is content so important? There are two main reasons and the first of them is customers – website content needs to be well written and provide the necessary information, conveying the right message to the visitors (potential customers). And, it also needs to use the right keywords for the sake of better ranking on search engines. When both goals are achieved, when the content is optimised both for search engines and people, we can move on to the next step.

Mobile optimisation

The volume of mobile searches is constantly increasing, it is happening every minute. For that reason, search engines tend to rank responsive websites better. Such websites also get longer visits which additionally improves the rankings, ensuring even more future visits. When building a website for J3 Building Solutions Limited, a leading building and construction company based in Newcastle Upon Tyne, we strongly recommended mobile optimisation and the client listened, which was an important preparation for the future SEO work for this company.

Page load speed optimisation

It is needless to say how important the page load speed is. Imagine yourself visiting a website and eagerly looking to find some important information or contact details while it is taking ages to load a page. Not sure about you, but I would leave the website in a matter of seconds.

Social media activity

Having social media accounts as a must for every successful business, no matter if it is a B2B or B2C business. Potential customers will, as part of their research of the market, look into potential providers’ website, social media accounts and the ones with more active social media are said to be chosen by potential customers more often. So, what are you waiting for? Be active, post, share and you will be heard and found by potential customers!

Final thoughts

Yes, there are many ways to get noticed online and drive more website traffic and I listed 5 which I considered most important. If you want to go an extra mile, you can invest some time and efforts in email marketing, paid advertising, guest blogging and a number of other activities that will help you achieve this goal. It is always a good idea to start with a few activities, learn how to do these and then expand your list of activities further.

 

Graphic Illustrations – Why is it a good idea to use them?

Are you planning on building a new website or just looking for an idea to freshen up your existing one?  Colours, fonts, images, and videos are but a few design aspects to address. The tiniest detail could make a significant impact on the message you are sending to your audience. Before you rush into a decision and put a lot of time and resources into a specific style (that might not fit your brand), stop to consider what design technique would best fit your business and brand. Using graphic illustrations is a great technique and here is how they help and contribute to your website design, brand and business.

Storytelling

Graphics and illustrations are an excellent tool for storytelling. Let’s say you are looking to tell your clients about your exciting progress and how you first started the business 15 years ago. Doing that with graphic illustrations would be an excellent choice! People like stories, but it is critical how you tell them if you want to attract the attention of your target audience. It’s not always easy to engage your visitors just by writing your story and adding photos,  especially if you only have access to stock images.
Having illustrations is a much more intriguing and impressive way to take your visitors on a journey with you. An illustration would naturally bring attention to your story and make it easier for the audience to follow through. Graphic illustration could be a friendly and charming way to leave a warm feeling in your visitors, reminding them of their childhood. It is a massive bonus to have your brand associated with happy memories and funny stories from the careless childhood.

Simplifying complex subjects

Have you ever noticed that when trying to tell something difficult, we often draw or try to visualise our thoughts to provide others with a better understanding of the topic? Graphic illustrations are an enormous help in these situations. Using fewer words in a shorter time makes the subject you want to discuss much more engaging and easier to follow. Nowadays, online users don’t spend much time reading and trying to figure out what you want to say. That’s why you need to be sharp and to the point, but also make sure you simplify the subject without missing the essential details.

Unique Design

One of the best reasons for using graphic illustrations is that it can be truly unique to your business. A graphic designer can create personalised illustrations just to fit your brand and these could be your distinct trademark. If you want, you can provoke your potential customers with abstract graphics, which could raise questions and encourage conversations. Also, you can send your brand message with a sophisticated and elegant illustration with a perfect customised colours selection. In the example below, you can spot a great way of utilising the homepage screen and splitting into two parts. Graphic illustrations make this approach very distinctive and easy to navigate. Also, this technique creates subconscious reassurance that your private conversations will stay confidential, which is one of the reasons why Talk Works, a company offering talking therapies and counselling services In Newcastle & Gateshead uses illustrations and not photos on their website.

Summary

There are plenty of styles to consider when using graphic illustrations. If you are already thinking of this exciting design technique, but are not sure what would suit your brand best, get in touch – we love being creative!

How to boost your social media presence using Open Graph tags

Creating outstanding content is essential but it only truly matters if it reaches the audience it’s intended for.

Online presence has become a significant part of every marketing campaign. Websites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. facilitate a more personalised and less intrusive conversation-like interaction with potential customers. It enables companies to come across as more friendly and approachable which results in more well-disposed customers.

Once you have established that relationship with your visitors it’s even more important to keep them engaged and share interesting stories with them on a regular basis.

However, with so many businesses competing for our attention, there is only so much space at the top of the feed. That’s why it’s vital to talk about visibility and what can be done to increase it.

Search engines like Google aim to present information concisely and helpfully and while their sophisticated algorithms are doing a pretty good job, it’s always better to take control of what is to be displayed.

One way to do that is using Open Graph tags. These powerful tags are fundamental to every digital marketer, and it will enable any web page to display as rich, structured graph object.

This excellent tool was introduced in 2010 by Facebook, and its purpose was to offer an easier integration between Facebook and other websites. In other words, it presents rich graph objects with uniform features as Facebook objects. Nowadays, most of the social media platforms rely on it and is adopted by the major search engines.

Some of the main benefits of using Open Graph tags are:

Control

It’s fantastic that these tags give you a certain degree of control, for example when your post is shared by an outside user you can make sure it looks nice and bright as your original one. This wouldn’t happen without the Open Graph tags.

Click-through rates

Ever wonder what makes you click on certain posts than other on social media- very often that’s actually the photo or the description. A well structured and designed post can undoubtedly attract more click to your page.

Improved Conversion rates

The conversion rate is the percentage of visitors to your website that converts into customers/ subscribers etc. Once having gone through the hard work of creating great content and having a high number of click-throughs this organically will affect your conversion rate.

Open Graph Tags are easily overlooked, but they are an invaluable part of your online marketing strategy. If you are smart like our recent client Connect Insolvency, you will not underestimate these helpful tags and will be able to create rich and engaging social media posts and grow your audience.

Top 3 reasons for using video on your website

A common side-effect of today’s fast-living modern society is that people are used to getting things instantly, from fast food to information they need. Call us lazy, impatient or just slaves of today’s commercial world, it is the fact that we spend more time watching films than reading because it is easier and requires less attention or mental activities.

This phenomenon has started manifesting in all areas of our lives, resulting in changes in web design trends too!

User experience

“A picture is worth a thousand words” – someone must have come up with this saying before the invention of the video, so I am wondering how many words a video is worth.

Using video on a website is a great way to supplement user experience and it is being increasingly used in marketing to build a relationship with the target audience because it provides great user experience for the visitors.

SEO

Using video on your website is good for SEO for several reasons and the most important one is that websites and web pages with videos tend to be ranked higher on search engines. Adding this video to your company’s Youtube profile will additionally help with Google rankings, given that it is owned by Google.

Visual experience

The great thing about videos is that they are an audiovisual means of communication, so a good quality video on your website will help you achieve so many goals – it will engage your audience, they will learn more about your brand and most importantly (in today’s fast living way of life), it will save their time, so they don’t have to read a 300-word paragraph to learn what you offer.

In summary

When using a video on your website, you tell your visitors that you care about them, about quality, that you want to stand out and most importantly – that you listen to their needs.

Here is one great example of a website that is using a video on the homepage: a company offering forklift trucks for hire and sale throughout the North East, Forklift Solutions.

 

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The benefits of having a news page on your website

When building a new website, every website owner should carefully consider what pages will be included. Website with over 20 pages could be quite distracting and of course, you want to list all your services, and each of them deserves a separate page. But is the News or Blog page something you should exclude from your website to make it more user-friendly and less distracting?

I would say that the pages like a Blog or News page are actually one of the pages you should add to your list first, and the main reason is the website SEO, but it also adds value to the visitors.

 

 

If you are familiar with how search engines work and what are important factors in SERP rankings, you will know that if you post on your website regularly, it will increase the Google crawling frequency on your website and will lead to better rankings. The reason is simple – search engines tend to favour active websites with regularly updated and fresh content. So, when you rank better for certain keywords, it will lead to an increased number of visits and if your website content is equally great, no doubt your website will become a real lead generation machine.

Now, let’s talk about the value a blog or a news page adds to your visitors. Visitors, like search engines, also like to visit informative websites with fresh content and the News or Blog page is just the right page to give your visitors what they want.

So, use your News or Blog page to share your news and updates with your target audience. Add value to your business too by establishing yourself as an authority in your field through blog writing and you will be rewarded both in terms of better rankings and gaining your visitors’ trust.

 

Both our old clients, like J3 Building Solutions Limited and our new clients like Warm Zones, UK’s leading charity who is dealing with and helping to end fuel poverty, feature this very important page upon our advice.

Why are images important for your website?

Whether it is for a service, product or business – There are thousands of reasons why people browse the internet. For businesses, providing the relevant information is key to driving audiences to engage with your website as there are millions out there.

However, more and more people have become fixated in imagery when viewing websites. According to Bright Local, 60% of consumers give more consideration to local results that have images.

But what makes a good image on a website?

 

Image quality is one of the first things people notice when looking on a site. Poor images can reflect peoples perception of the professionalism of a business. Quality of an image can be determined by the pixels, size and overall relevance to the correlating information.

Images that represent your product, brand and service are key ways to communicate with your target market. Irrelevant images can cause miscommunication to the consumer.

Pictures are a lot easier for people to remember than copy according to Brain Rules. It is important your images are clear, bold and tell a story for your website. It is evident that copy is important for websites but images can be just as, if not more, valuable for increasing traffic and creating memorable information. Images can help create a dynamic with an audience – Without images, people are unable to see your products and services for themselves.

Though, if your website is too picture heavy the relevant information can get lost in your website. Balance is important! Articles with an image once every 75-100 words got double the number of social shares than articles with fewer images (Buzzsumo, 2015).

Metropolitan House are a business building in Gateshead who provide Office, Virtual and Meeting space for businesses. They created a brand new website with updated information and new images. They have a creative theme throughout, with consistent images in correlation with their copy. This flows well and gives audiences a feel for the site and engages the services with audiences through their copy and images. This should overall increase traffic to their site.

It is evident that images are becoming more and more essential for websites. More people engage with sites with images and are more likely to remember images over the copy, therefore, it is essential that businesses include these consistently on their websites.

What is the difference between onsite SEO and offsite SEO

Wikipedia defines SEO as the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a
web page in a web search engine’s unpaid result. There are two forms of search engine optimization: onsite SEO and offsite SEO. So, what is the difference between these two and what can you do to optimize your website both in terms of offsite and onsite SEO.

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Onsite SEO

Onsite SEO involves efforts that help your website be friendly and ‘loved’ by search engines. That means that certain elements of your website need to be adjusted to follow certain rules so that’s each engine can understand the purpose, content and structure of your website.

Content is and always will be king. Great content makes your website loved by both visitors and search engines. So, make sure it is unique and relevant to the products and services you offer.

Meta title and description are descriptions intended to help search engines understand the intent and topic of your website pages. These descriptions need to be short and concise. Relevant keywords need to be used in meta-tags, in order to make sure search engines can properly identify the topic of the page.

Header tags are not visible to visitors but are important for search engines. H1 tag is the title or the heading of your page, while H2 is the subheading.

All images used on your website need to have image alt text attributed to them as it helps search engines understand what the image is about. Again, using relevant keywords in the alt attribute helps both search engines understand the subject of the image.

Having a mobile-friendly website is a must nowadays. Not just because mobile-friendly websites are better ranked, but because of your website’s accessibility as well. We all know that most visitors will browse on their mobile ‘on the go’ before making the final purchase on their desktop or tablet and you do not want to miss the opportunity to be seen.

Website load speed is important because a website that loads quickly will be loved by both visitors and search engines.

Additional factors important for your website SEO are social media integration, website security and website links. This post provides some useful tips on onsite SEO optimization.

Offsite SEO

Offsite SEO focuses on the promotion of your website through external websites such as blogs, forums, social media, business directories and reviews. So what can you do to have more links pointing to your website from other websites?

Blogging is a great form of link building and guest blogging can not only generate new links to your website, it can also drive more traffic as well. The links coming from trusted websites help you increase the authority of your domain overall. So, what are you waiting for, be creative, express yourself through guest blogging now!

Social media marketing is probably the fastest way to promote your content. Social media platforms are free and easy to use; they help you increase brand awareness for your business and also help you boost inbound links to your website.

Online reviews on websites such as Google+ for example will help you boost your inbound links, but they also build trust among visitors.

Business listings are also a great form of link building and they help you establish your online presence and build your reputation. Sites like Yelp, Scoot, Factual are good examples of business directories where you can list your business and help both your SEO and sales efforts.

In summary

As you can see, onsite SEO and offsite SEO are equally important, but if you are wondering where to start, I’d say it’s onsite SEO. Once you take care of that, your website will be ready to be seen and loved by search engines and new visitors and you are ready to start this journey.

I am especially proud of the work we have done for our client, Derwent Healthcare, a company providing therapy chairs, blood pressure monitors and body analysers. We started the project by perfecting the onsite SEO and this work created a solid base for offsite SEO and digital marketing.

 

 

 

Offline marketing ideas to promote your business

Online marketing is usually prioritized over offline marketing and that’s reasonable. The Internet has changed everything, and businesses tend to focus on online marketing strategies since this is the best way to promote a business. However, there is still a lot of potential in offline marketing activities and based on our extensive experience, we can say that you can best promote your business with online and offline marketing efforts combined. We have talked a lot about online marketing and today, we’ll focus on some brilliant offline marketing ideas that will help you boost your website traffic and thus promote your business.

Advertise in printed media

This might be the age of the Internet, but people still read newspapers and magazines. Identify a magazine close to your target audience’s niche and advertise there. They will see you and hear about you and that’s a great start.

Printed marketing material

Flyers, pamphlets and brochures are a great way to promote your business offline. If you are selling products, you might want to add discount coupons to your flyers or if you are selling services, flyers are a great way to offer a free initial consultation. Don’t forget to be creative in your printed material design – that will catch the reader’s eye immediately.

Business cards

Business cards never get old really. So always make sure that your staff, especially the employees whose job involves a lot of networking or client facing activities, have them handy. And never forget that business cards are a great investment and it is important that they are designed by a professional.

Networking

Networking is a great opportunity to create a personal connection with people. So, pick a networking event that is relevant to your industry and start mingling with other guests. Networking events can help you meet potential customers, but you can also build strategic partnerships with other businesses. So, what are you waiting for, go mingle!

Attend tradeshows

Once you have identified a tradeshow relevant to your industry and taken care of your promotional material, you are good to go. You can either attend a trade show as an exhibitor or a visitor attendee and you can for sure generate some quality leads anyway. Tradeshows are also a great opportunity for personal interaction so have your business cards and promotional material handy!

Organize workshops

Workshops are a great opportunity to educate your potential customers. That way you build trust with them and establish yourself as an authority on the subject. And that’s exactly the core of the relationship you want to have with your customers. Don’t forget to use this opportunity to hand out promotional material!

Be seen

Be everywhere! Think about billboards as outdoor advertising or if you have a car, consider featuring your email address or your logo on it. Or what about having an office sign outside of your office? There are so many ways to get creative and be seen without spending too much money on advertising.

In summary

Yes, there are so many ways to promote your business offline. For most of these activities, the design is very important,  and you will need a professional designer to help with this. But we can help you just the way we helped Newcastle based Liquidators & Insolvency Practitioners, Connect Insolvency with branding and printing.

 

Connect Insolvency Business Cards

 

Getting Online Visibility for your Dental Practice

The Internet, as one of the most powerful mediums, has changed our lives – both personally and professionally. We instinctively turn to Google for any questions we have, whether it is a ‘How to..?’  question, ‘What is Bitcoin?’ or a question related to finding the closest dental practice.

Therefore, it is clear that just having a website is not enough if you want your dental practice to grow. In this article, I will list some important steps for building an impressive online reputation for your dental practice.

Website

As mentioned earlier, your website is a primary source of information for your potential customers. When building a website for your practice, you need to focus on branding, colour scheme and call to action buttons. Also, do not forget to make it mobile-friendly! When building a website for our client Ryton Dental, we chose blue as a dominant colour because it is a relaxing colour, often associated with trust and reliability. These are the primary emotions we wanted to welcome Ryton Dental’s visitors with. We carefully planned the arrangement of call to action buttons and made a perfect mixture of primary and secondary colours to make them visible. After your website is built, keeping it up to date is crucial for your online presence.

 

 

Local Business Listings

Now that you have a website that provokes the right emotions in your visitors, it is important to focus on local marketing. Get listed on online business listing directories, since this is one of the most effective ways to boost your business performance on local search.

Social Media

Set up your social media accounts and link them to your website. Social media like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram help you connect to and build relationships with your patients as they act as great social proof for your dental practice. Don’t forget to be active on social media and post regularly. Share news, publish relevant educational content and simply engage your social media followers.

SEO Optimization

Local Business Listings and Social Media efforts help your website SEO and to successfully complete these SEO efforts, make sure you work on onsite SEO as well. Your website pages, titles, tags, content and overall structure need to be optimized for your target keywords. Use Google Analytics for keyword research and utilize them efficiently through your website pages.

Email marketing 

Email marketing helps you mostly with the existing patients, which is as important is building relationships with the new ones. Use email marketing to remind your patients on their next check-ups or educate them on new medical services, oral health, hygiene techniques and the like. Don’t let them forget you!

Summary

Working together with the Ryton Dental team has been a great experience for us. This was more than just building a website. Instead, we were building an online presence strategy for their business which was a great opportunity for us to utilize our extensive knowledge in web design and digital marketing.