4 Essential Questions to Ask Your Website Developer Before Getting Started

Posted by on May 10, 2019 in Website Content |

Building a brand-new website for your business is always an exciting time, but it can come with a few pitfalls and challenges if you do not make doubly certain that both you and your website developer are on the same page. Below, we highlight four important questions to ask regarding your website development before the project officially kicks off.   What Can I Expect from You in Terms of Communication?  You should both decide on a communication-based plan of action before getting started. There is nothing more distracting for a website developer than being hounded every hour by a client who is looking for an update. Agree to check in with each other at a certain time every day/every other day and choose a communication platform that works for you both, i.e. phone call, email, Skype, Slack, etc.   How Will You Handle Small Decisions?  Some website development professionals will insist on a certain amount of creative freedom when it comes to designing a website. This is usually regarding smaller details that most clients would not even really notice. However, if you would like to be consulted about every design-related decision, it is important that you let your developer know this to avoid any unexpected surprises.   Are You Able to Work According to a Deadline?  If you need your website completed on or before a specific date, highlight this to your developer from the get-go and make sure that they have the capacity necessary to accommodate the deadline.   What is the Scope of the Project?  Make sure that you have told your website development professional exactly what it is that you want from your new website’s design and ensure that he or she has quoted for all of this before commencing. You do not want to have to pay extra down the line!   Looking for a website development team that you can count on? Look no further than the experts at WSI OMS! We specialise in website development, website design, SEO and more. Contact us now for more info about how we can help you transform your company’s website into a conversion-ready customer-driven hub. Please follow and like...

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Are meta descriptions really that important?

Posted by on Oct 13, 2016 in Website Content |

Yes, yes and yes again. A powerful meta description can make or break, but first let’s go back a bit: What is a meta description? In tech talk, these are the HTML attributes that provide concise explanations of the contents of website pages. In plain language, the meta description is those couple of lines that come up under the title when you Google something – they describe the search result. What it does is help the person searching decide whether or not to click on the link. The words in bold in the description match back to the keywords used in the search. So why do we need them? Firstly, they increase the click-through rates and improve visits from organic search. Secondly, it gives the right people the right information: Google uses meta descriptions to return results when searchers use advanced search operators to match meta tag content. Thirdly, it increases visits from social media platforms – Facebook, for example, uses meta descriptions when the page is shared on their site – without meta descriptions, social sharing sites might just use the first text on your page instead. Lastly, you can use meta descriptions as a sales tool to promote your content – although they don’t affect the ranking, a well written meta description can increase the click-through rate and even the time spent on the page. How to write a convincing meta description  Here are the 5 steps to writing a good one: Make it compelling – a clear benefit of clicking though, to tell the searcher why they should read this post. Use 1-2 keywords – the title tag and meta description should contain one or two of the keywords relevant to the content. This helps the search engines identify and index your web pages accordingly. Aim for under 155 characters – anything longer will get cut off by Google. Avoid keyword duplication – there is no need to repeat keywords or phrases more than once. Eliminate non-alphanumerical characters – search engines sometimes see hyphens, plus signs and quotation marks as HTML code, so they will change your meta description. Stick to plain text. High quality meta descriptions that are explanatory are very important. Because this text is not displayed in the content, a lot of people ignore them, but they can go a long way to improving the quality and quantity of your search traffic. For more on blog writing, content creation and reaching your target audience, contact us. We’re The Business when it comes to digital marketing, so why not give us a try? Please follow and like...

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Use the improved Google Maps local search ads to promote your business

Posted by on Aug 11, 2016 in Website Content |

If you use local search ads on Google maps to attract customers in your area, there have been some improvements to this service that you should know about. Appearing on both desktops and mobile devices, the adverts you place on Google maps are a very powerful way to increase your exposure, making it easy for people to find you, contact you and make their way to your premises. The “new generation” Google maps ads are set to improve by introducing new ad formats and features, that will hopefully direct more traffic to your physical location. These include Promoted Pins, customizable business pages and in-store promotions. The aim is to make the ads more visible to the user, but without becoming intrusive. New local search ads will appear in the Google Maps app, on Google Maps mobile, desktop and tablet sites, as well as on google.com expanded map results. In the recent Google Performance Summit, some mobile statistics were revealed that should make you sit up and realise why people need to be able to find your business easily, both online and physically: Around 90% of all global sales happen in stores, not online. Three out of four people that use their mobile devices to search locally, end up visiting the store within a day, with 28% of those searches result in a purchase. Nearly one third of all mobile searches are related to location. 84% of consumers conduct local searches. Over a billion people use Google Maps. Promoted Pins, or branded pins, will help your business stand out on a map. Your logo will appear on the map search result, instead of the usual red dot. Below your business details and address, you can feature an in-store promotion, which could be the pull the user needs to select your business. So how does Google know which store listings to show, when there could be many in the area? Using a variety of signals, including search history, interests, time of day, demographics and query context, Google will show results that are relevant to the user, similar to what they’re doing on the Google Display Network. Local pages are set for an upgrade – when someone taps on a local search ad, they will be taken to a page that will include store hours, phone numbers, website address, directions and even a photo of the storefront. These changes are set to roll-out in the next few months, so in the meantime, you can make sure that you enable local extensions – only ads with location extensions enabled will be eligible to show. Check that all your information in Google My Business is up to date and accurate. The world of digital...

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What to think about when considering a website redesign

Posted by on Jul 28, 2016 in Website Content, Website Design, Website Development, Website Optimization |

More than ever, people go online to find out information about products, services, information and reputation checks before committing to a purchase. Every business understands the importance of having a website that fulfills these needs, but don’t always get it right. You need to take a hard look at your website, to see if you’re getting the most out of it and think about fixing it if you are not. It could mean a simple fix, or perhaps a complete revamp, but before you decide what route to take, ask yourself these five questions: 1. What is wrong with my current website? Ask your customers or friends who are far enough removed from your business to give you an honest opinion of your website and its functionality. Get reviews of your site and use analytics to determine which are your most viewed pages. Customers who spend a lot of time online, can give you insights into what your site may be missing or doing wrong. 2. What are the goals of the redesign? Think carefully if your website need refreshing, or if you are looking to rebrand your whole company – there’s a big difference. Websites do go out of style, so a visuals upgrade could be all it takes to keep people visiting your site. Remember to set goals and time frames for a redesign. 3. What are some features I want to include this time round? Do your research of other websites and see what you like in terms of look and feel, as well as what works for navigation. Not all the features you like may be suitable for your company’s product, or be what your customers are looking for. Check out your competitor’s websites and note which ones rank high for SEO and have high levels of engagement. Try not to copy outright – rather go beyond what other sites are doing. 4. Has my product or service offering changed? If the nature of your product or service offering has changed since your first website launch, use the opportunity to update your site while revealing product changes. Customers will respond well to a revamp, as it shows you are staying relevant and keeping up with trends. Be sure to include social media icons. 5. How do I want the website to function? Think of the specifics – do you want your website to be more content or information based, or is it about generating more leads? Do you want to drive sales, or bring customers to your physical location? Once you’ve determined this, the redesign can specifically focus on these areas. There’s a lot to think about when going through a website revamp or overhaul,...

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Eight ways to improve a web page

Posted by on Jul 14, 2016 in Content Marketing, Website Content, Website Optimization |

Creating an awesome web page that people will visit again and again isn’t easy, but there are some things you can do to improve your chances. Ultimately, you want your readers to experience a page that is user-friendly and quick to look at, as well as offering something interesting that your readers will pass on to others. Here are eight simple tips to try: Ensure your page loads fast Internet connections are getting faster and faster, but there’s always something more to download. Speed is something people only notice when it’s absent, so while you might feel your efforts at improving your loading speed go unnoticed, it goes a long way to improve experience. Make sure your images are optimised for speed and that the page has no broken links. Keep your page simple These days, people skim read, so get to the point and avoid excessive content. Show your readers what they want to see, but provide enough detail to keep them satisfied. Have clear navigation Your readers need to be able to navigate round your page with ease and speed, or they won’t stick around. If the page is long, use anchor links to lead the way around. Use small images Make sure your images are resized and optimised to be as small (quick to load) as possible. Write for a global market Consider your readers might be from all over the world, so make sure things like currencies, measurements, dates and times are clear and not specific to a particular country. Check your spelling People judge websites by the quality of the writing, so make sure you don’t have errors. Make sure your links work Broken links show readers that your site is not maintained and they’re unlikely to spend time on your page. Use a HTML validator and link checker to help check older pages for broken links. Provide your contact information It doesn’t have to be every detail, but supplying a way for your readers to contact you often creates a level of trust. Usually, they’ll only contact you if there’s a problem. If you need help with your website design, or want to know more about creating a great page, give us a shout and we’ll point you in the right direction. Please follow and like...

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Six compelling reasons to update your website

Posted by on Mar 10, 2016 in Online Marketing, Website Content, Website Optimization |

As website technology evolves (daily, it seems), so does the need to update your website. Most websites need updating every few years, sometimes more often, depending on your content. As one of your most valuable marketing tools, the need for a website that is up to date and user-friendly couldn’t be more important. Here are six compelling reasons to update your website, sooner rather than later: Make your site more responsive and adaptive If your website started as an online brochure, it’s unlikely to have the embedded tools needed to capture information from site visits. Online forms, Calls to Action and special offers can help to get your website visitors’ information that can convert into a sale. With mobile internet traffic on the rise (up to 40% of all traffic), it’s critically important to have Responsive Website Design, to ensure your site works on any size screen, or you will lose out to those competitors that do have it. Speed up your site Web surfers are notoriously impatient, so the time it takes for your site to load can be the difference between good steady traffic and a high bounce rate. Google will rank a faster loading website higher than a slow one. Get rid of old or unused content, reduce the file size of images or install some speed booster plugins. Increase security Moving from an HTTP site to a HTTPS is not just a Google ranking signal, it’s a way of ensuring that your website data is encrypted. E-commerce sites need to check their security every month, since hackers make it their mission in life to get into your site and muck it up. A hacked site could become infected with viruses, which you’ll then spread to your customers, or be blocked by search engines and browsers. It’s a hard place to come back from. Get rid of old or irrelevant content Check that your site does not contain broken links or outdated content. Blogs written several years back may not only be relics from the past, but downright embarrassing. A spring clean is an excellent opportunity to update client lists and testimonials, rewrite title and meta descriptions and make your site more SEO friendly. Rebrand and reposition Keeping up with your competition is vital, so a fresh look can go a long way. If you designed your website yourself the first time round, it may be time to get professional help with copywriting or design and photography. Your business strategy may also have evolved since you created your website and it’s important that your site is a good reflection of your company culture. Get more social Social media activity needs to be properly integrated with your...

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