Why Your Website Should Be Mobile Friendly

The more you learn about your website and your business online the more you will hear people say things like you need a responsive website and your website needs to be mobile friendly. These suggestions are great, however should you really worry about your website being friendly to mobile visitors? The simple answer is yes you should. There are a variety of reasons why you should create a website that is functional, easy to navigate and aesthetically pleasing on mobile. The upwards trend of mobile growth in website traffic and e-commerce is not slowing down anytime soon and the capabilities of people to search for and visit anything online at anytime means that you should be creating a website to take advantage of it. We are going to run through some simple reasons why you should optimise your website for mobile, tablet and desktop.

Usability

People today have less time and they are in a rush to find the things they are searching for. The harder you make it for them the more likely they are to leave your website without them doing what you wanted them to do when they visited. There is nothing more frustrating for a potential visitor then having to zoom, modify and squint to read the text on your website while browsing on their phone. Presenting your website and the critical information you are providing to people to get them to engage in an action on your website becomes even more important as the screen size reduces. You need to make it clear, simple and easy to browse. Creating a website that is responsive to the changing screen size will allow you to easily optimise the view no matter the device.

Search engine optimisation

During 2014 mobile internet browsing exceeded PC for the first time ever and this represents an ever growing trend. More and more people search for products and services online now more than ever before. Google, the most popular search engine in the world is always trying to deliver the best content to visitors using their algorithms. They are now taking into account how mobile friendly your website is and guess what? If you want to rank highly for mobile search results on Google you need to have a website that is optimised and responsive to view on smaller devices. It makes sense for Google to deliver content that is not only valuable for people searching for particular information but also in a way that is easy to read. If you're lacking mobile traffic which is likely to be close to 50% of your overall site visits you should definitely review how optimised your website is for mobile.

Conversions

Whenever visitors hit your website you should always be asking them to do something, whether it be giving you their details, contacting you or buying something. Given what we have discussed regarding the growing trend of mobile traffic and searches you have a ten fold better chance to convert potential visitors on mobile and tablet if your website is optimised for smaller screens. Your information will present better and your calls to action will have a far greater impact and chance to convert a visitor into a customer.

Don't Do's

Like anything there is a couple of things you should avoid when optimising your website for mobile:

1) Don't create a separate mobile website - Google doesn't like this and it isn't necessary with fluid designs that can now adapt to the screen size. You are also missing out on optimising for tablet which is a growing market as well.

2) Don't tear your website down. There may be some simple ways you can implement responsive design into your existing framework depending on how your website is built

The benefits of having a responsive website far outweigh the potential negatives. The cost to build your new website or to adapt your existing one should pay itself off over the long term because you have a far better chance to rank higher in mobile search results and convert potential visitors into customers.

Related Tags: Web Developer Newcastle | Website Design Newcastle


How To Increase Conversions With 3 Simple Techniques

Sometimes the hardest part of any kind of online presence or growth strategy for your website is not only getting traffic but also how you convert that traffic to do something once they visit. People have short attention spans these days with the rise of social media so if you instantly don't have what they need they will be gone before you can get your best sales pitch out of the bag. First impressions count and your website should be a reflection of your business profile and brand. Ultimately your website should be an extension of your broad marketing plan and the centre of your digital strategy. With these three simple techniques you will learn how you can increase conversions on your website.

Create Goals & Measure Results

Typically businesses and small business owners don't have much of a plan after they've launched their website. Time can also play a huge part as the owner of the business you are usually juggling multiple hats at once to keep your business operating smoothly. One of the simplest things you can do is develop some goals for your website & track your results. Not only will this give you an understanding of how your website is performing but it will enable you to look at ways to improve your content, images, design and flow of your website. Some simple ways you could achieve this:

  • Every time you or a sales persons receives a direct call ask where they heard about you from e.g. was it your website? Dig deeper and find out how they got to your website. Keep track of each phone call as you may start to see a pattern as to how people are finding you. If something is working invest money into it and track the return on investment. It may be that people are finding you through social media, Google search results or paid advertising. If you can find a cost vs return that is profitable for your business on a strategy that is working it makes sense to invest time and money into it.
  • Use Google Analytics. It's free and is a useful tool to find out where your website traffic is coming from, how long they are staying and what pages on your website they are visiting. This will arm you with information around what potential customers are doing and why they are or aren't converting

First Impressions Count

How people perceive your business and can have a lasting impact in the mind of a person making a purchasing decision. Some simple things you can do to ensure you won't miss out on those potential customers:

  • Make your website mobile friendly. Over 50% of people today use their phone to browse services and buy products. If you aren't mobile friendly you are missing out on a huge chunk of potential customers
  • Make your website fast. Speed is one of the most critical factors in converting visitors and it also helps your search engine rankings
  • Analyse your competitors and always try to improve upon what they are doing

What's In It For Me?

There is so much information online today you need to be telling your potential customers what's in it for them. You need to translate your sales pitch and marketing onto your website to translate what you do and to engage visitors. Some simple ways you can do this include:

  • Create consistent calls to action throughout your website that asks/tells customers what to do - e.g. call you, email you, buy this
  • Develop landing pages that create a funnel from your calls to action. Simple landing pages that deliver a concise message and offer the customer something in return are a perfect example. You can then easily track who visits and when they convert.

Some of our favourite landing pages include:

Unbounce - It's pretty obvious they should have a good landing page as that's what they do, however this is the prime example of what you should show on a landing page and how you should structure it. Tell them what you do, sell the benefits and back it up with evidence. If you can offer something that is also a bonus as well.

WebDAM - Straight to the point and asks for your information above the fold

BasecampThe simplicity is what makes it so good and goes to show you don't need to go overboard to capture peoples attention

Useful Tools

Increasing conversions is a continual process that requires effort and a clear cut strategy to track results and improve. Here are some useful tools that may help:

Optimizepress

Google Analytics

Hootsuite

 

Related Tags: Social Media Marketing Newcastle | Website Design Newcastle


Search Engine Optimisation vs Search Engine Marketing

Many businesses ask the question of how quick can they get to the top of Google and what is the best way to do it. There are two proven strategies that will help your visibility in search engines including Google, Yahoo and Bing. Search engine optimisation is a term to describe optimising your website to appear organically in search engines based on certain keywords people are searching for. Search engine marketing on the other hand is optimised advertising that appears at the top and left hand side of search engines and when clicked on, links to a page on your website. With search engine optimisation (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) you are always targeting keywords but the way you appear on search engines is different in each scenario and the associated cost vs return is measured differently.

 

As an individual or business what strategy is best for you. Let's just start out by saying that there isn't a one size fits all and SEO now falls into a broad category that includes content and social media marketing as both contribute to your overall search engine position. Any good digital marketing strategy has detailed research and a plan to deliver on measurable goals. Whatever your business is you should always plan your goals for your website just like you do for your everyday operations. Your goal may be to generate 4 enquiries a month through your website or if you are running an e-commerce store it may be to convert your search engine marketing to 10 actual customers through checkout each month. Having goals at the start aids with developing and refining your plan as you move along and grow your website.

SEO and SEM have the term 'keywords' in common. The more competitive the keywords the more you should expect to pay as there are more people actively trying to acquire visitors and traffic for these search terms. Ultimately this will make it more difficult for you to rank higher in a short amount of time. With both strategies you can put your business in front by doing detailed research or having your digital partner undertake research to uncover niche pockets or underutilised keywords that fall within your target audience. While targeting broad terms are okay for loads of traffic you may be missing out on those customers that are actively in the buying cycle. For example if you are trying to target the keyword "shoes" compared to "buy running shoes" you will find that while your traffic may be good you may be missing out on a high conversion rate as you are targeting the wrong search terms. Any good plan will have a mix of active longtail keywords and broader terms that are relevant to your industry.

What Strategy Should I Use?

It's a question that many businesses will ask themselves. Why should I pay for search engine optimisation when I can just run some Google Adwords. Many people fall into the trap of trying to do everything especially when they run a small business. Effective search engine marketing requires research, time and effort to optimise ads and split test results to measure conversions. Typically we would recommend to a client to use a combination of both SEO and SEM if their market is big enough and if there is significant competition.

SEO can be your best friend! Think about whenever you search for a restaurant or a service or if you want to buy something online. Where is the first place you head to? I'm sure 99% of people would say Google. If your business isn't on the first page unfortunately it's unlikely that you will see 95% of these potential customers looking for your goods and services. Sure you can run some Google Adwords but you are investing money for each click through to your website and do you have a plan to track conversions, what pages people are searching on your website and when they are leaving. In the long term the return on investment for SEO is better than a do it yourself search engine marketing plan. Why? With solid first page rankings you aren't paying everytime somebody clicks on your website and you have the capacity to outperform those ads that appear and not pay each time someone clicks on your website. Think about how much you will spend on advertising your website in comparision to how many new customers you will obtain and their average overall spend. Being on the first page will drive more traffic, more enquiries and sales while maintaining a fixed cost. Search engine marketing requires detailed optimisation of bids and managing of costs on a daily and weekly basis. If you are in a very competitive market you can be looking at upwards of $10 - $20 per click. While sustainable in some industries you need to have a plan to track conversion and optimise your ads and landing pages.

SEM is an important component of any business and is a perfect strategy for an e-commerce store where you can track the cost of a click and a potential sale. E.g. if a click costs you $2.00 and you make $10.00 off that customer there is a decent margin and good return on investment for the business. Another scenario is a specific landing page aimed at converting visitors. If you are running a campaign or a special promotion it is the perfect opportunity to run an Adwords campaign and track how your landing pages are performing. It is highly important though that you are not just throwing up some Adwords without managing their performance. While traffic is great you would prefer highly targeted traffic that is more likely to convert so you aren't wasting your money. The importance of conversions goes ten fold whenever you run a search engine marketing campaign as you have paid money to get the customer to your website and if they leave before they do what you want them to you need to know why. This is where many businesses fall down when it comes to advertising their website.

Think long term and get your business ranking for targeted keywords and build a search engine marketing campaign that compliments your organic position on search engines and as a way to create special landing pages for promotions and specials.

Related Tags: Social Media Marketing Newcastle | SEO Newcastle