April’s Mobile Algorithm Update Exposed

As the New Year brings new technology, this next generation of technology shapes the way users interact with the world. Google is no stranger to tailoring their products to serve a good user experience (UX), and reward those that keep UX at the forefront of their mind. In doing so, Google is making some drastic steps to address the fact that more and more users are turning to their mobile devices and expecting sites to respond accordingly.

Google recently announced: “Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results.” The announcement was pre-empted with Google attempting to send a warning, sending webmasters notifications via Google Webmaster Tools that their site had crucial mobile usability issues.

As an SEO, you are trained to stay ahead of the curve, or at least stay up to date on Google’s frequent changes to avoid potential penalties to your site. Below, we go over the details on Google’s forthcoming mobile algorithm update, and how to identify whether you may be at risk.

Here is a quick breakdown of the most notable changes:

  • Googlebot must be allowed to crawl CSS & JavaScript to pass the “mobile-friendly” test
  • Responsive design does not have a ranking benefit
  • Mobile friendliness is determined at the page level, not site-wide
  • Tablets will not be affected by this update
  • Google is currently working on a dedicated mobile index.

There are multiple routes to combat these changes, but first and foremost is testing your mobile experience, and identifying any shortcomings. Check the user behavior in Analytics, and see if mobile users are converting, visiting multiple pages, or bouncing straight from the SERP. There’s a good chance that if you have a responsive site designed with mobile in mind, your site is already in good shape. If you don’t, it’s time to start troubleshooting.

The first route would be switching over to a mobile-friendly website design. Google recommends that a responsive site or mobile-friendly site that offer an optimized experience on any device is the best practice. These sites can handle any resolution with changes in CSS files, which affect how the elements on web pages are presented. Computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets will all display the website in the best way possible. Over time, it can be much more cost-effective to build a responsive website and optimize it for all standard resolutions. However, mobile-only sites are also a viable alternative. Mobile-only sites allow you to have a separate site that gives you the option to optimize it for mobile users. The upside to these sites is that they are easier to build and generally cost less to maintain.

Google also recently announced, via Twitter, a list of common oversights that hold websites back from achieving the “mobile-friendly” status. Google is notorious for omitting helpful details from their algorithm updates, so be sure to follow these seven fixes.

  • Googlebot Limitations – Always allow Googlebot access to the JavaScript, CSS, and image files used by your website so that Googlebot can see your site like an average user.  (Helpful tool: “Fetch as Google” feature in Google Webmaster Tools)
  • Unplayable content – Ensure your videos and other media are viewable on mobile devices.
  • Faulty redirects – If there is a separate mobile site, make sure there are proper redirects set up for each desktop URL.
  • Mobile-only 404s – Redirect all desktop URLs to the proper mobile URL instead of serving a 404 or a soft 404 page.
  • CTA’s & interstitials – Create your CTA’s and interstitials with the UX in mind. If not done properly can really hurt the overall UX.
  • Irrelevant cross-links – Check all internal and external links to ensure they point to the correct equivalent page.
  • Slow mobile pages – Use Google PageSpeed Insights to view the speed of your site.

The bottom line is that it truly depends on what your site is focused on for you to decide on a mobile-only or responsive design. As long as you make your website user-friendly, resourceful, and relevant, you will have the opportunity to rank in highly in Google’s organic search results, regardless of the website type.

Posted in Google Algorithm Update, Mobile, Mobile Compatibility, Mobile Search | Leave a comment

#TheDress, Wait! Keep Reading, We’re Talking Fads

So I know what you’re thinking, #TheDress came and went -what more can be said?  Well, there is plenty to learn about the trends of online content, so here goes.

#TheDress

The Dress was perfect click bait for brands and news organizations; We’ve seen articles on the science of the human eye and color, we’ve seen Ellen break down the events on TV that led to the online explosion, we’ve seen hundreds, if not thousands, of brands try to leverage the attention of the popular hashtag into their own benefit.  Heck, we’ve seen PSAs designed to use the popularity for some social good, and it even has it’s own WikiPedia entry! This was a prime example of organizations from Buzzfeed to CNN to AdWeek to Coca-Cola newsjacking the impossibly high interest for their own gain.

As with any fad, they show up and disappear just as quickly.  But with a little perspective, one can really see the value of jumping on the bandwagon.  Now as the nature of this fad was uncontroversial, there was little risk for brands to jump into the fray, but it should be noted not all online fads are created equal, and your marketing agency should be cognizant of possible repercussions prior to publishing tweets!

For example, we work with a well-known jewelry company, their inventory is fairly large with a wide variety of items coming in different colors.  On February 26, we noticed an unusual spike in the number of impressions.  Thousands of people, in their clamor to figure out if they were seeing straight, began searching for colors on Google.  On any other day, this wouldn’t make any sense, but this was the day of #TheDress.  As you can see, our client’s site – although not offering any dresses – ranked on Page 1 for many variations of search queries where users intended to learn about the dress, evident in the non-existent click-through-rate.

 #TheDress Search Queries

This is a great lesson for understanding the trajectory of a keyword, while a band or musician might enjoy an uptick in popularity, search traffic, or ranking when selected to perform at Coachella or the Super Bowl, this spike will inevitably drop off and is not a great indicator of future success.  Ensure the monthly search volume of keywords suggested by your SEO company are not too trendy, certainly if you’re writing a topical post, you’ll want to include the popular terms in the Title and Meta Description, but the window for link building to these timely pieces are short, and thus would not be part of a long-term ongoing SEO campaign.  Sound off in the comments below if you have any questions about the shelf-life of a keyword.  And while you’re there, are you Team White & Gold or Team Black & Blue?

Posted in Google, Google Trends, Google Webmasters Tools, Keyword Research, Keywords, SEO, Social Media, Traffic, Twitter, Web Marketing Tools | Tagged | Leave a comment

Valentine’s Day Cards for SEO Lovers (Literally)

Finding the perfect Valentine’s Day card is a challenge. You know what’s even more challenging? Finding the perfect Valentine for your co-worker. Because everyone does that, right? We decided that it was time to show a little love to the people we spend more time with than we’d like to admit. The relationships you establish during your 9 to 5, or in our case, 8 to 6, are everlasting. They will stand the test of time, blah blah blah.

Remember when you were in elementary school and everyone walked around the class and dropped Valentine’s Day cards into decorated cardboard boxes? This is our digital version. SEO love goes a long way.

IE Love

H1VALENTINE

Valentine

REFERRALOVE

Here's a link. Happy Valentine's Day.

HAPPY VALENTINE'S! (1)

Crawl Valentine Card

sending you lots of love

CANONICALOVE

V Day

To some good SEO

LOVE SITEMAP

LOVE.TXT

HAPPY VALENTINE'S!

404_valentines

 

 

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Why Mobile is Mandatory in 2015

Did you know that in a recent Google survey, it was found that 72 percent of mobile users say it is important to them that websites are mobile-friendly? And that of those 72 percent, a whopping 79% will return to search to find a mobile-optimized site? If that’s not enough for you to make sure your mobile strategy is on point, consider this: just last month Google began sending out mass emails to sites that aren’t mobile friendly, warning them that not going mobile carries the risk of rankings penalties. Mobile is now mandatory, especially if you’re running your business online.

A Steady Progression to a Mobile Priority

According to the PewResearchCenter, more than 58% of American adults had a smartphone in 2014, and 34% of American adults use their cell phone as their primary tool for mobile searches, rather than a laptop or desktop computer. And while it’s a no-brainer that having a mobile-friendly website creates a more favorable user experience for your target audience, what you may not know is that search engines are paying close attention to these statistics and changing their algorithms to follow suit. While reports last week of a mobile-targeted algorithm update proved to be a false alarm, it wouldn’t be shocking to see the headlines come to reality in early 2015.

Think about it. It’s ultimately the goal of search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing to deliver the best possible result for their users, one that is informative and helpful. So it’s only a natural progression that search engines would want to stop showing websites that aren’t mobile friendly. Their users don’t like it, why should they rank it?

Google’s announcement that they will no longer rank non-mobile friendly websites on smartphone searches is just the next step in their steady progression to supporting mobile usability.  Google has been slowly but surely gearing up for an all-mobile world over the past few years and kicked it into high gear in late 2014.  In September, the search giant tested smartphone-friendly icons in search results. Then, in October they took it in another direction by testing non-mobile friendly icons to give users a heads up that their user experience might be less than the best. They also incorporated a mobile usability section into Webmaster Tools to help site owners understand areas for improvement.

In November, Google released the mobile test tool, which allowed site owners to get a “grade” on their mobile usability and provided suggested quick-fixes to help them get up to snuff. This all culminated with the announcement that Google will in fact take usability into effect when ranking on mobile, and put to bed the long-standing mystery as to when Google would actually make the move.

More Reasons Why You Need to Go Mobile

While it remains to be seen if desktop rankings will also be affected by the change, it’s clear that to dominate in your business, your mobile strategy needs to be on point. As more and more consumers come to expect a streamlined experience on mobile and desktop, their buying behavior is reflecting it. Non-mobile sites can give an aura of being outdated, hurting the always-important “trust factor” of your website – and keeping users’ credit cards in their wallets. In the same Google survey mentioned above, 55% of respondents said that not having a mobile friendly website, damages their perception of the brand overall – meaning a brand’s slow adaptation to mobile commerce could result in reverberating repercussions.

So, How Do You Get There?

So now that you know you need a mobile strategy. Where to begin? The task can seem daunting for large and small businesses alike, but in fact taking even small steps toward mobile usability can lead to big returns.

Start with an Audit

If you’re looking to evaluate the health of your mobile strategy, one of the best places to start is with Google’s mobile test tool. This tool will grade your website on its mobile usability and specifically pinpoint areas for improvement. While some will require intensive technical work, others can actually be quick fixes.

Also, take a look at your mobile traffic in Google Analytics, and compare metrics such as time on site, bounce rate, and goal conversions to that of desktop traffic. Evaluating how your users are behaving on your website, as well as how you would actually like them to behave, is a great way to help you prioritize tasks in the mobile transition. For example, are users diving right into the contact page? Adding an immediate call to action on the homepage can eliminate an extra step and help you shore up more leads.

Put Yourself in Your Users’ Shoes

Though it can be difficult to objectively view your website, visiting the site on mobile and going through the actual steps you would like consumers to take it a great way to identify any pain points or areas of improvement. Chances are, if you find a particular item confusing or frustrating, your users are as well. Make this a task for your employees or trusted friends, as well, and have them identify what they felt was left to be desired. This allows you to collect data from different devices and different points of view.

Explore Your Options

After you’ve gathered this data, you will be able to make a more informed decision about the best way to pursue your mobile strategy – whether it requires a complete overhaul or some quick fixes. Businesses that are looking for a relatively quick and inexpensive solution can explore “converter” tools such as DudaMobile, bMobilized and WompMobile, which use their own software to serve up a responsive design to users. Other options include creating an app, creating a mobile subdomain or subfolder, or building a responsive website design. Often times, responsive design is the most comprehensive and best long-term solution for mobile, however each business has unique needs that must be taken into account.

At the rate of mobile growth and search engine changes in response, it appears the only real wrong decision for mobile is not making one. So if you’re looking for ways to boost revenue or even maintain revenue in 2015 and beyond, it all may just start with a look at your smartphone.

Posted in Mobile, Mobile Compatibility | Leave a comment

Landing Page Mistakes That Are Stopping Your Conversions Dead

You’ve done the market research, looked at endless columns of numbers and data, mapped out the right strategy to market to your target audience, and managed to get your audience to your site. Now the real work starts.

Landing pages. (dun dun dun)

Nothing can be more rewarding and vexing than creating a landing page for your site that converts well. A good landing page has every element of design, copy, and social working together to tell a narrative that guides the visitor toward your conversion goal. Weaving together that web of magic can be difficult but ultimately rewarding. As much as I’d like to offer you magic to solve your landing page problems, my time at Hogwarts won’t allow me to, but if you manage to avoid these 6 problems that plague most landing pages, you’ll be one step ahead of the herd.

1. A Disconnect Between the Ad and the Landing Page Copy

When you first grab your visitor’s attention, you’re teasing them with the promise of more information. When they click on the ad, they expect to see similar messaging on the landing page. You want to lay a trail of clues for your visitors to follow until they find what they’re looking for. The last thing a visitor wants is to click on your ad, which is promising them something, only to find themselves on a page that doesn’t have the same messaging as the initial ad. Keep things consistent.

2. Wrong Call to Action Color

Each landing page should have one specific objective—one thing that your story is leading them to. The placement and wording of your call to action is important, but we won’t get into that today. We’re going to focus on the coloring.

There are many theories out there regarding which color is best for your call to action button, but without testing your market audience, it would be difficult to tell which one works best. There have been many studies showing that there is no “one size fits all” color for calls to action. How the button color fits into the visual hierarchy or structure of the page is critical. The best color for call to action buttons is the one that works for you and converts highest on your site. The key is to test and test often.

With that in mind, certain colors do incite certain emotional responses from people.

  • Blue denotes professionalism. Blue is used by financial institutions for the trust it radiates and also by tech firms like Dell to show professionalism.
  • Green is the easiest color for the eye to process. It works well for budget-conscious shoppers. Green is also associated with the word “go.”
  • Orange brings to mind feelings of excitement, enthusiasm, and warmth. Sites like Amazon use orange in their calls to action.

3. Not Explaining Your Purpose Clearly

How much time does it take to figure out what you are offering? If the answer is anything more than “no time at all,” you need to change the messaging of the landing page. If you are offering a service, explain what is included. What makes your service unique? Why are you qualified to offer it? Confusing your visitors with unclear messaging is the easiest way to lose a lead.

4. Top Navigation is Not Removed

There has been some conflicting feelings about having top navigation on all landing pages, but recent studies are helping shed some light on why removing your site’s navigation is so important. Your landing page has one purpose: to drive leads. You want to keep the visitor focused on that purpose, which means that the visitor should only be in one place: that landing page. Nowhere else. A landing page is part of an external sales funnel. It’s intended to generate leads or score conversions, so keep the visitor on your landing page and don’t try to drive them anywhere else.

5. Use of Stock Photos

If you search Google right now, you’ll find dozens of landing pages that use stock photos (and in most cases, the same pictures). Stock photos are cheap and easy to get a hold of. Stock photos also look phony and can reduce your credibility. When a visitor gets to your landing page and sees a smiling young woman with a black headset on, what do you think her first impression will be? The simple solution to this is use images of people directly related to the company. By putting a “real face” on your landing page, you’re communicating value to your visitors and inspiring them to trust you more. Generalized stock photos won’t cut it for you anymore.

6. Your Opt-In Form Requires Too Much Thought

In many things, simple wins over complex. Your contact form should be simple. Hubspot researched 40,000 customers and found that conversion rate improves by almost half when the number of form fields are reduced from four to three. The less information you ask for, the easier it is to take action. In most cases, you don’t need more than an email address, maybe first name and phone number. You can always ask for the rest once you get their contact info. The fewer layers you put between your visitor and you, the better.

The great thing about these issues is that, with some elbow grease and moderate amount of work, they can all be solved and potentially lead to better conversions rates.

Posted in Onpage Optimization, Web Design | Leave a comment

Things New SEOs Won’t Understand In 10 Years

 

It became painfully clear to me recently that I am getting older. Older than I’d ever like to be. After a terrifying talk with my 13 year old cousin, who has never heard of such things like a floppy disk, overhead projector, or pogs, I came to realize that times change. This being said, I began to wonder what SEO gems will be forgotten in the future generation of SEOs.

Responsive & Adaptive Web Design

For those creating a website, one of the first decisions that must be made is whether to have an adaptive or responsive web design. Most people don’t know the difference. So, what is responsive design? RD is a website designed to adjust to any screen size and resolution. Due to this, adaptive web design is slowly heading out the window. What is adaptive web design? Adaptive web design that adapts to a screen size based on a piece of Java coding that dictates the layout. Now why do I say both will be gone in 10 years? Well, with technology heading towards the mobile world, eventually the adaptive design will be too complicated to maintain compared to the responsive design layouts. So at this rate in ten years, with adaptive design being gone, all web design will be responsive web design. Do people in China call their food “Chinese food”? You get my point.

Link Farming

Link farming is slowly becoming a thing of the past thanks to Googles search Algorithms. What is link farming, asks the innocently naïve SEOs of the future? Link farming is a group of sites that link to every other site in the group. This was used by companies to quickly and easily make tons of links for websites to increase page rank. With the internet becoming more and more sophisticated, Google eventually decided enough was enough of these low-quality links. While some still pop up here and there, Google is pretty quick to lay down the iron fist.

What Internet Explorer Is

How many of you remember AOL? Exactly. The familiar tone of the dial up modem. The ear-bleeding screech when you pick up the phone without knowing someone is online. Yes, the good ol’ days of AOL have come and gone, and it looks like Internet Explorer is heading that same direction. It’s hard to believe that we suffered through 11 different versions of Internet Exploder, but at long last, with mysterious disappearance of Windows 9, Microsoft announces that they will be launching a replacement for IE with the release of Windows 10. The new browser codenamed “Spartan” plans on kicking IE down the never ending whole of history 300 style.

300_kick

300 – Warner Brothers Studios

Google Plus

When Google launched Google Plus in 2011, they were only 7 years behind the social media bandwagon that is Facebook. Google Plus tried many things to be new and different from Facebook, such as…circles. That’s right, circles. The ability to organize your friends into circles to help you keep all 5 friends that were actually using Google Plus organized. It wasn’t until SEOs realized that links in G+ actually held more weight than other social media sources that G+ actually took off. That was the good year of Google Plus. Quickly after, Google’s Matt Cutts (who SEOs might not know in 10 years. BONUS FACT!) announced that Google Plus actually does not have any more weight than a normal social link. From that point forward, Google Plus slowly went downhill. While it is still hanging on for dear life now, there have been several rumors that Google will eventually get rid of Google Plus ol’ yeller style.

tran

Tropic Thunder – Dreamworks SKG   

Yes, things are changing. A new tide is rolling in. The sun is setting on this day. Insert whatever metaphors you would like, the hard truth is. At some point, you will be talking to a new bright eyed SEO fresh on the job, and he will say something to make you feel really…really old.

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How to Utilize and Benefit from a Custom 404 Page

 

404 Title

Photo courtesy of India7 Network

We live with 404 errors. They are that pesky neighbor that always shows up unexpected, and they will always keep coming and coming. It is always recommended to clear 404 site errors from your site when you find them, and more of them will appear, so what do you do? Ignore them? Sweep them under the rug? Or how about turning them into a prosperous opportunity!

Ok, so what do I do?

It is currently best practice to create an official 404 page on your site for whenever a user runs into them on your site. Google has offered some great advice as far as best practices for these page, and you can read more here.

I’m paraphrasing, but here are some of the highlights pulled from there:

  1. Tell visitors that the page they’re looking for can’t be found.
  2. Make sure that your webserver returns an actual 404 HTTP status code.
  3. Be sure to feature a navigation pathway back to your site, like a homepage link, as this will prevent exits, drop-offs and can encourage higher conversions.
  4. Have the same look/feel of your site on your 404 page.

How can I do this?

Keeping the above guidelines in mind, there are many different ways that you can create a great 404 page that not only keeps the user experience in tact, but also adds new elements to enhance it. I will break down a couple of ideas for you.

  • Add Some Personality to Your Site!

There are plenty of opportunities in the construction of a website where your business style, personality, and/or humor can truly shine. The 404 page is a great place for this. You can turn the unfortunate event of a page error into something that will put a smile on the user’s face. And remember, a happy consumer will practically already have their wallet out!

You can be artistic with your 404 page, like they did here:

colorblocks

Or you can be funny with your 404 page, like they did here:

Screen Shot 2015-01-15 at 4.30.10 PM

Or you can be obvious and to the point, like they did here at Propeller:

obvious

Got it. What else should I do?

  • Encourage More Site Engagement!

You can include features on the page that encourage a further action from the user. Examples of these are:

  1. A Search Box – This will give the user an opportunity to look for something specific on your site.
  2. Link to Homepage – when in doubt, send them home. This will reset the user experience and get the user to where they really want to be on your site.
  3. Link to Top Site Pages – You could include links to your homepage, your sitemap, or even include favorite or site pages in the attempt to encourage additional pageviews.
  • Promote Yourself!

Are you trying to push the sale of blue widgets this month? Or trying to get rid of the overstocked fruitcake supply after the holidays? You can use this opportunity to feature promotional items, discounts and seasonal incentives on this page to encourage a purchase or conversion!

  • Make it Your Own!

In conclusion, you can create a great 404 page for your website where both you and your business can truly shine. You can have a better user experience, gain more site traction, and even improve sales or conversions. That’s like having your cake, eating it, and then eating it again! Sound good? Now get to work on your own incredible 404 page!

Contributed by: Darryl Blank, SEO Account Manager at BrightHaus

Posted in Advice, Google, Marketing Tips, Onpage Optimization, Web Design, Web Marketing Tools | Leave a comment

Write meta descriptions that get clicks

Meta descriptions feel like old SEO. Not black hat, but boring. Plus, Google continues to maintain that it doesn’t consider them in ranking. So, why should I spend more time on meta descriptions?

Good meta descriptions improve CTR which improves your position is search results.

Think of them as a free little marketing pitch. Users don’t know what’s on the other side of the link, and descriptions provide a space to offer them a compelling reason to click. This will do more than increase traffic to your website; even though Google doesn’t consider meta description content in their search ranking algorithm, they will definitely be impressed with your improved click through rate. Search engines only give you a little window in the SERP and that 160 character description is your best opportunity to show ‘em what you got.

writing meta descriptions

Should I put keywords in the description?

Since this content isn’t a factor in the algorithm, you have creative freedom here. If it seems natural and it’s inline with a searcher’s expectations, then, absolutely. Don’t force keywords and don’t include keywords more than once.

Why is click through rate so important?

click

 
The CTR on a search engine results page is huge. If returned links don’t get clicks, they don’t get to stay. Google and Bing will replace unpopular URLs with new ones, which, if you’re on page 2, is great news.  Search engines want to return the most relevant results and the CTR proves to them that your page is relevant for that keyword.

How to write a compelling meta description?

Consider the audience’s expectations. It might make sense to offer a clear and concise description of the page’s content, or, you could take the opportunity to be a little more persuasive and write the description like a call to action. Put on your writer’s cap and experiment. Or, hire an agency 😉

SEOHaus Pro Tips

  1. Honesty is the best policy
    • Reduce your bounce rate by giving an honest representation of the page content or your businesses products or services.
  2. Know your limits
    • Google uses CSS to limit description length to about 920 pixels, which is roughly 155 characters. Use as much space as you can without going over.
  3. Inspire action
    • Some words get more clicks than others.
Posted in Marketing Tips, Onpage Optimization | Leave a comment

Our Internet Predictions for 2015

Happy (late) New Year! January is always a wonderful time of year! The holidays are over, a new year has come, and you have a fresh start. January is also a time when us bloggers, and people in general, like to pretend to be psychics and predict what’s in store for the year ahead. Here are 5 of our wild internet and SEO related predictions that might cause a giggle or two if they come true, and 5 more serious internet and SEO predictions that may actually seriously come true.

1. Coming off of Kim K’s big “Break the Internet” photo shoot in 2014, Betty White decided to throw caution to the wind, and break the internet even more so than Kim K with a photo shoot of her own (using Miley Cyrus as the photographer) and sadly, things got a little weird and a whole lot of wild, and Betty broke a hip :(

BettyWhite1

2. Facebook decides to change its privacy policy again. This time, to no policy. No privacy whatsoever. You think someone’s watching you in shower? Chances are it’s now Facebook.

3. Amazon makes some big moves in acquisition this year! Amazon decides to buy out Pinterest! Now all those outfits and cool trips you pin, actually get added to your Amazon cart! Shopaholics rejoice!
**Warning: WILL cause mass amounts of spending, putting you in loads of debt. Use with caution**

Sent from paradise

 

4. The world finds out the true identity of Google. And its… OPRAH! Satellites for everyone!!

oprahmeme

5. Robots take over the earth!! And it’s the ATMs that lead the revolution. Start hiding your cash in your mattress, before you never see it again!

 

All jokes aside. Now on to our more serious, and probable predictions for the Internet and SEO in 2015:

1. Shopping through social media will become even more common. With apps and programs becoming more easily available, your favorite brands will allow you to shop on Facebook and Instagram with just a “like” or a “double-tap”!
(Here is one of those platforms that can help you set up shopping through social media: http://shopsocially.com/)

2. Pinterest’s new promoted pins that were launched at the very tail-end of 2014, will continue to grow at a fast speed, giving Pinterest a stronghold in the online ad world. eCommerce sites especially should look into this new online paid advertising option.(https://ads.pinterest.com/)
Pinterest_ad_mockup1

3. Many in the field of online marketing believe that the importance of social media to businesses will continue to grow at incredibly fast speeds. With the current major social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc) continuously growing and changing to accommodate the growing number of users, more and more businesses and companies will find that making social media campaigns a priority is necessary. This will help bring in and keep customers, as companies 5 decades ago relied on advertising agencies and the boom of television.

4. The demand for conversion optimization will also continue to grow! Over the last couple of years the emphasis landed on content marketing. But now that that horse has been beat to death, and everyone understands you need good optimized content on your site, as well as used to acquire links, the focus now has shifted to conversion optimization. More and more companies will be on the lookout for skilled or experienced conversion optimization experts! The cost of good marketing and advertising is on the rise and companies will be looking to offset this by improving their conversion rates, the result will be more and more SEO or marketing firms offering conversion optimization as a service.
(http://www.seohaus.com/resources/conversion-optimization-tips.php)

5. For most businesses, mobile traffic will far surpass organic search traffic. In the age of the iPhone and Android war, it was just a matter of time before mobile traffic surpassed organic desktop traffic. Having a smart phone allows anyone to do a quick search anywhere anytime. In turn, we will probably see Google begin to reward sites that offer a great mobile experience to users. Definitely make mobile optimization a priority in the New Year, and you will have a major advantage over your non mobile friendly competitors.
Untitled design (1)

So what do all these predictions mean? Well if you haven’t already figured out, those first 5 predictions were just a joke. But those second 5 predictions really do have a high probability of coming true. Keep a look out, keep reading blogs, and keep educating yourself on the industry that is changing every day. Happy New Year from SEOHaus.

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The Verizon-AOL Deal.

The Verizon-AOL Deal.  Why and what it means for you.

imrs

nomad73/flickr

Verizon, has approached AOL about a possible acquisition/joint venture.  While the companies have some similar services the most usual result would be the access to Mobile and Digital-video ads.

Verizon has 100 Million mobile service users and 6.5 million broadband internet service users.  While AOL is the 3rd largest desktop video company (Google, Facebook lead video).  AOL is also the only company that is possibly up for sale.

Automatic Advertising in mobile videos is a high return revenue stream, AOL has a network that reaches almost half the US population and makes itself a great contender for growth.

As more and more advertisers are moving to online mobile content – Verizon wants to make its stamp and this could the way to do it.

While this deal is not complete this could lead to a market capitalization for Verizon, passing its mobile competitors in the ad revenue market.

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