Friday, April 29, 2016

Optimizing Your Site Content for Mobile Audience

A wide range of content including blogs, articles, video clippings, images and press updates are published on the Web every day. Today, more people are scanning and browsing this content on their mobile phone screens, which is tiny when compared to the screen of a desktop. A recent survey indicates that one out of five cell phone users in America use their phones while going online. 

The Reese News Lab functioning at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at UNC Chapel Hill has been studying ways and means for content creators to adapt to the increasing number of mobile phone users. They recently experimented with, which is a mobile-first news site. An in-house team comprising reporters, designers and programmers helped create content for the site. The experiment was about optimizing the content for mobile phone users. They also came out with an e-
publication entitled News on the Go: Field Notes on Storytelling for Mobile Devices that gives a concise idea about the findings. 

Designers are aware that the small screen in a mobile phone allows the users to view only a few lines of content at a time, creating the need for scrolling frequently. Although the research team assumed that the users would prefer short, specific content, they were surprised to find that almost 17% of the users were patient enough to scroll down to the last word, as compared to 22 percent of the desktop users, who did the same thing. 

The important difference between mobile and desktop users is that the former can view content anytime, anywhere, whereas desktop users need to be tethered to one place.  Moreover, anytime boredom takes over, phone users start fiddling with their phones, often browsing the Internet casually. 

Studies conducted by the Pew Internet & American Life Project indicate over 42% of the mobile phone users turn to their phones whenever they are bored, and catchy content will hold the attention of these bored folks. 

Avoid wide-shot frames in your video and photo stories, because what looks captivating on a movie screen is often lost on a tiny phone screen. Hence, stick to close-ups or medium shots that give you a chance to make a better impression. Moreover, just because the screen you have to contend with is small, you do not have to worry too much about having to shrink the content to match. Instead, focus on taking advantage of the device having immense potential due to its mobility. You could think about content pinpointing users’ location. 

Optimizing Your Mobile Site for Page Speed

There are several factors that need to be considered while designing a mobile-friendly website. There are several tools that you can use for this purpose in order to achieve the desired optimization levels. A very important factor you need to take into consideration is the time your page takes to load. If it is going to be painfully slow, you run the risk of losing customers. When compared to desktop sites, mobile versions of these sites are at a disadvantage. With mobile sites you need to contend with slower network connections, a browser cache memory that is comparatively smaller, JavaScript can parse very slowly, as will HTML as well. As early as 2012, Google developed an online tool for taking a mobile friendly test. Also, the Page Speed Insights tool which gives you the speed score of your website along with suggestions on how you can improve the load time. 

Mobile caches have a limitation, and cannot hold as much content as a desktop browser can. The slow page loading can be attributed to the mobile site’s browser caching. There is a solution for the problem now, thanks to HTML5 Web Storage Application, which most mobile browsers use. With the Chrome cache, on the other hand, the cache size is dependent on the amount of disk space at its disposal, because it is dynamic. Some mobile browsers are capable of using local memory for caching resources, thus doing away with the need for any server requests. 

Storing your mobile site’s resources externally or even linking them can be avoided when the site is not cached on mobile browsers. These can be embedded on the site’s HTML itself, though this could lead to an increased page size. This could directly affect the speed of your site, which is not desirable. To negate this, you’ll have to use any web application that lets you embed resources in the HTML itself. Try Mobile Optimizer, which is an application meant to do exactly this. Another way to speed up the loading of 
mobile web pages is to use mobile browsers. Here are some sites like TwitterBootstrapHTML5BoilerPlate and 52Framework which are good for documentation and downloading for CSS3 and HTML5 framework. 

It is not advisable to include images on a mobile website as the screen space crunch is a major disadvantage. Go for a simple layout that is free of images, in case there is a need to include images, opt 
for increased bandwidth space as well as processing time. Try using tools like JPEG & PNG, Online Image Optimizer, and SuperGIF to optimize images on your mobile site. It would also be a great idea to avoid using click buttons on your mobile site, as there is a painful wait after the users click. Instead use touch events that are a lot faster. Check out this link to know more about touch events. 

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Smartphones, and several other hand held devices do have some limitations that often put off users who will shun your website. Any user will look for an alternative site that is mobile-optimized, and the user is bound to go to your competitor. There are a few basic things that you need to remember in order to retain users, who are potential customers. One thing that is very irritating and can put off most users is when the scrolling never seems to end on a site. Similarly, the pinch-to-zoom feature can often misfire, and lead to frayed nerves. Any user will prefer a website that can be conveniently viewed on their mobile devices. They do not like the idea of having to adjust their devices to suit your site. Hence, if 
the content is too lengthy, split it into several web pages instead of making the user scroll on and on. Have a read at the common mobile friendly mistakes to avoid compiled by Toronto Web Designers, SEO Royals

Although there is limited space at your disposal, you need to display the CTAs or the calls-to-action buttons prominently. Whenever a user inquires about your services, signs up for a newsletter, or adds his or her name to a mailing list, it indicates the interest that is shown in purchasing a product or service. 

Hence make sure your CTA buttons are spread out on the web pages prominently, prompting the users to click instantly. It would be a great idea for ecommerce companies to ensure that the checking out process is rendered fast and user-friendly enough to be managed by lay people. Checkout pages too need to be optimized for mobile devices lest you lose on conversions and sales. 

Similarly, there are several website features that work brilliantly on a desktop or laptop, but are not the same when viewed on a mobile screen. These features include drop-down menus and menu bar 
functionality. The menu bar is the bread- and-butter of any website. It is the storehouse of navigational data that help Google or other search engines index the website properly. Importance has to be given to the menu bar when it is implemented into mobile optimization. Instead of a single menu bar, think of using an icon that can display three bars. This will tell the user that the menu is expandable, check out this responsive menu plugin called MeanMenu which tells you a lot about this option. 

Displaying contact information prominently is another important thing that most people miss out on while optimizing a mobile site. Other information regarding how to place an order, what to buy and when, need to be displayed clearly on the homepage. There is no point in jumbling too much irrelevant information in such a small space, and letting the user hunt for vital bits of information they actually need.

Also See:

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Local SEO Ranking Factors for 2016

As a business owner, you need to understand the importance of Local SEO because your business needs recognition in the area where it is established. If you are offering any service or selling any products, you need to make sure it is on the top list the Local SEO so that you can gain more customers. Normally when people are in need of a service or product in an area, they start searching by specifying the area and you need to make sure that your services are available to them when they search for it. Local SEO involves the optimization process for obtaining the local outputs.

How can Local SEO help you with your business?

Brand Visibility – You get a brand visibility for your products and services as many people get to see your company address and details.

Customers Visit – Once customer understands the products and services you deal with, they access your website to know more about the company. If it is not listing on the top of the search engine, your website might not be accessible to all customers.

Improvement in the Conversions – When many customers visit the website based on the local search, you can see a drastic improvement in the number of conversion rates.

Growth of the business – When you concentrate on Local SEO for your website, you can meet the requirements of the customers who are looking for products and services in a particular area and thus get more customer and your income increases.

Top Local SEO Ranking Factors for 2016

1- Accurate citations are critical to local search engine ranking.

2- Have a correct NAP (name, address and phone) and focus on building quality citations. Quality citations are the ones that are local to the business and have a higher domain authority. For example an attorney receiving a citation from an attorney review site is more useful.

3- Niche/Industry directory have the greatest authority when building citations.

4- Having a structured citation is important. A structured citation means using schema to define your business name, address & contact details on the listing page. 

5- Citations from industry associations or local news sites are also very helpful. 

6- Having duplicate citations harms the reputation so it is better to delete duplicate citations.

7- Richness of citations is extremely important. Rich citations means listing that contain additional data such as a description, photos, opening hours, payment details etc.

8- Website link, appropriate category of listing and opening hours are most crucial.

9- Presence of keywords in title and domain helps. 

10- Behavioural factors like CTR, mobile click to calls, check ins etc are also considered as ranking factors.

11- Social signals like FB likes, Tweets and Google plus ones should not be ignored.

12- Inbound anchor text, linking domain authority and linking domain quantity are also important factors.

13- Presence of physical address in the city of search.

14- Proximity of address to the point of search.

15- HTML NAP matching GMP location NAP.

16- A mobile responsive website

(Above factors are based on inputs from Brightlocal, BlueHatMarketing and Infront).

Also See:

WhiteSpark Local Citation Finder
Free Business Local Listings
Free Seo Tools
Rank Watch
Free Analytics Tools for Websites
Relevancy Score For Local Results
Google Patent to Identify Erroneous Business Listings
Mobile Seo Tutorial
How to do Local Seo?

Friday, April 15, 2016

The New Green Ad Label for Adwords

Google has started testing a new green ad label for Adwords. The previous version was the yellow label one and Google has decided to convert the yellow ones into green.

The experiment is in the testing phase and Google has still not pushed on the changes. There is still no official confirmation for it that Google will roll the new bright green ad labels or not

Here is a screenshot of the newly labelled green ads in the testing phase: 

Let's see when Google makes it live. The experiment might have been done to test the effectiveness of the new color in terms of more clicks. After all, Adwords is the main revenue generation wing of Google and the new color attribution solely aims at generating more revenue if not user experience. Kidding!

Also See: 

101 Free Resource for Learning Adwords

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Google Sends Messages to Webmasters for Unnatural Outbound Links

Google has started issuing messages to webmasters that their sites have been flagged for unnatural outbound links. The warning read "Unnatural outbound links from domain goes here violate Google Webmaster Guidelines."

Here is a screenshot of the applied manual spam action penalty: 

What To Do Next After You Have Received a Penalty?

All those site owners who have received such messages in the webmasters console must first try and detect all such low quality outbound links on their site then they must either remove them completely or no-follow themAt last, submit a reconsideration request to Google

How to Find Out All the Outbound Links on Your Site?

Download the screaming frog software from hereRun it and this will display all the outbound links your site is having. Identify all the low quality ones that can initiate Google penalty and no-follow them or remove them. 

Matt Cutts and Sandy Explain What It Means If Your Site Has A"Unnatural links From Your Site" Penalty and Also How to Fix it!! 

Also See:

Checking Whether Your Site is Manually Penalized by Google
How to Write a Reconsideration Request?
Why Paid Links Are a Violation of Webmaster Guidelines
Google Disavow Links Tool
Link Farms
Link Churning
Penguin 2.0 Recovery Guide
What Exactly is a High Quality Backlink?

Sunday, April 3, 2016

How to Leverage the Power of Social Reviews to Boost Online Sales

 “Online reviews have the power to make or break a business.” 

 A recent Nielsen study claims that “virtually all Yelp users (98%) have made a purchase at a business they found on Yelp, with nearly 90% of them doing so within a week”. Customers visit sites like Yelp only to find ratings and reviews about a company when they intend to buy any product or to use any service. 

The power of social reviews is growing and businesses who are failing to implement strategies to grow their online reviews are falling behind. A positive review is always great for the business. But on the other hand, criticized reviews defame the image of an organization. Before going for any recommendations, on social media, consumers often visit websites to read the reviews and then they compare prices. Reviews always permit businesses to approach new audiences and facilitate business to build up a positive reputation. 

What Does the Stats Suggests? 

 • 88% Of Consumers Trust Online Reviews As Much As Personal Recommendations

Customers are 31% more likely to spend on a business with “excellent reviews” 

 • 72% users will take action only after reading a positive review. 

• Around 78% of audiences use online reviews to gather information about communities at some point during the marketing funnel

 • As per a Moz survey , online reviews impact 67.7% of respondents' purchasing decisions. More than half of the respondents (54.7%) admitted that online reviews are fairly, very, or absolutely an important part of their decision-making process.

The Objective 

The objective of social reviews is to maintain dignity in the market so that more sales can be made. In this competitive environment, if your customers keep happiness with your brand, it matters a lot to you because positive reviews heighten the growth of your organization. 

How to Get Great Reviews to Boost Online Sales? 

Here are a few ways to get great reviews to boost online sales: 

1- Consumer Reviews on Your Website 

According to a research, around 90% individual believe the suggestions from a companion whereas around 75% of them believe a proposal from a person they do not even know. So, that is a big reason, every single enormous brand shows costumers reviews on their website. 

Yotpo is an excellent tool that is designed as a mobile first reviewing experience. It is the only tool that you will ever need to get more reviews on your website and turn them into sales. It allows you to get more conversions, help in customer retention and get more qualified traffic to your website by utilizing the power of rich snippets. 

Have a look at how Car Part Kings drive more traffic and sales with the help of Yotpo:

2- Media Endorsement 

If you have your brand or product specified in media, you surely will get good reviews. Media endorsement includes spontaneous audits, magazine highlights, out-cast interviews, or TV fragments etc. 

Visual promotions make a powerful association with your customers. You may also take selections from these segments and glue them on your site to build up powerful image of your brand. At the point, people find consumers using your items will surely convert themselves to use the same.

3- Getting Personal 

The more you get in touch with your customers, the more they will understand the value of your brand. Social media is a spot for certified engagements with shoppers and often these conversations result in loyal, long term clients. You can request your customers for reviews through social sites like Facebook or Twitter, and also to share their stories and experiences. In doing such things, consumers will feel more associated with you and your image and be more propelled to buy from you. 

4- Prioritizing Consumer Services 

To keep any negative effect away from your image, try to remain focused on client’s issues by resolving all their queries in time and rectify their problems as soon as possible. This way you will build up trust between you and your consumers. 

In case, you do not have workforce to organize this level of administration, acknowledge putting resources into social media monitoring tools. Moreover, when a consumer shares an excellent affair, try to make ways to consider re-sharing crosswise. 

5- Influencer Reach

Influencers and well known people can be great resources for your brand. The influencer advocacy can be either in paid form or in natural form, depending upon your brand’s nature. In the case of paid form advocacy, contract also can be made for assigned time duration in order to grow your business whereas natural advocacy includes the condition in which an individual freely affirms of your image and results on the basis of their desires. Trackr is an amazing tool that lets you find influencers quickly and easily. 

The strategies described above will surely be very helpful to gain more and more social reviews so that online sales boost up. By utilizing these suggestions, you may make a symbolic impression for your brand. These terms will surely provide you the seamless buying experience, the often customers look for.

Also See:

Social Media Business Demographics
How to Create Compelling Content That Generates Social Shares
Measuring Social Media ROI
How to Increase Traffic to Your Blog
How to Add Ratings and Review Stars on Google Search Results
How to Display Google Trusted Store Reviews in Adwords
How to Find the Best Day of Organic Conversions
Data Sampling in GA