During this unprecedented time, we have chosen to have our staff work from home to be sure they are there for their families, and to help mitigate the spread of virus. We are continuing to support our valued customers just the same as before. The recommended support channel is to send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org where it will be put in a queue for the appropriate person to respond to. Our phones are still being answered if you need to speak to somebody, and if we miss your call, please leave a message and we will call you back.
If we can be be of assistance in any way as it relates to your employees working from home or supporting your customers, please let us know. This could be needing to access e-mail remotely, creating an internal site to connect and support remote users, making more services available on your site, communicating with your customers via an bulk e-mail, or anything else you can think of, please let us know.
Michael Ioco & Rob Schoenmann
Advanced Media Solutions
Promote In-store: Add small signs to your registers or windows letting customers know they can get important info and even discounts by following your page.
Offer Incentives: In combination with the above point make sure to give customers a reason to follow your page, such as offering a small discount for followers.
Cross-promote your social media accounts: You most likely have multiple accounts and so do your customers. Make sure to tell your current followers about your other pages and to follow those as well.
Link to your social media accounts everywhere: Your accounts should appear on more then just your website. Add links to your emails, newsletters, business cards, etc. to make sure everyone knows.
Actively find and follow others: You can’t just expect others to find you. Go out and follow other business, follow your partners, follow regular customers then they are more likely to follow you back.
Re-share other people’s content: In combination with the above point, once you have followed a business share their page with your followers. If you pat their back they are likely to return the favor.
Use relevant hashtags: In the social world hashtags function like a quick search so make sure to use any popular hashtags like #nationalcoffeeday or #sharkweek. If your creative you can make any hashtag work for you. Not sure how to find trending hashtags? Well their are plenty of sites and tell you just that, like Hashtagify.me
Post viral content: Just like hastags stay up to date on posts that are going viral. Once again you might have to be creative in your post to make it relevant but it can be done. Try to stay away from religious or political topics though as this can easily bring arguments to your page.
Try Facebook’s promoted posts: Many social networks provide some form of promoted posts making sure people see your content and page. Though this might cost some money the return can easily be worth it, and how much you spend is up to you.
Stay Active: Make sure you are posting on a regular basis. This not only give reason for people to follow you but also helps with your rankings in search results. If you struggle with thinking of posts then hire someone to help out with that, in fact its a service we offer here at AMS.
This is a question we receive on a regular basis so we put together a short list of questions that can help you decide what actions are needed. If you can answer “yes” to any of these questions, it might be time to take action.
1. Is your website more than 4-5 years old?
If your site is more than 4-5 years old, you are due for a website overhaul. It’s likely that your design, your content, and the technology behind your website all need to be looked at. Internet technologies change very rapidly and a dated website is easy to spot.
2. Is your website “mobile friendly”?
You’ve likely heard this buzzword a lot over the past six months or so because in late spring, Google released a game changing update to their mobile search algorithms. Search results now favor sites that pass the mobile friendly test. In many verticals we have seen mobile devices making up more than 50% of a website’s traffic, so this is vital!
You can read more about mobile friendly here on our site. There you can also find a link to Google there where you can test your site. If your site is more than 3 years old, it may not be mobile friendly. In this case, contact us to discuss what options are available.
3. Do you get alerts that a WordPress update is available or that your plugins are out of date?
If you have WordPress website and you log in to your website admin screen from time to time to make changes, you may see a message that there is an update to WordPress available, or that you have plug-ins that are out of date. If you’ve never logged into your site, there are updates available, you just don’t know it.
Does this mean you need a new website? No.
Should you go in and run the updates on your own? NO!
Do you need the updates? Most likely, yes.
WordPress regularly rolls out updates to its core software and plug-in developers respond with updates to their scripts. Some of those updates add new features, some close security holes in your site. Those are the updates that you need to be worried about. Like many of our clients though, you likely don’t want to worry about these updates. You just want to know your site is safe and up-to-date. For that reason, earlier this year we began offering “Digital Care Plans” to help put your worries at ease.
You can learn more about this offering and find answers to questions you may have on our website at the link below;
Be sure to check out the Frequently Asked Questions on the link above. If you are ready to sign up for one of these plans, you can do so right online. If you wish to discuss the state of your website, feel free to reach out to us anytime. Please don’t hesitate to contact us!
Websites need to function on any device and on any screen size and that is what responsive design does. though there are many reason for responsive design when we are talking about SEO the biggest reason is because responsive design will increase your rankings on searches. You can read more about how google ranks responsive sites better on one of our previous posts titled “GOOGLE FORCES SITES TO BE RESPONSIVE”
2. The Important Parts Need to be in the Text
Though search engines like google can search through different media types text has always been the best option for search optimization. This is why successful content marketing strategies has written content on every page. Many companies recommend trying to hit at least 300 word count on web pages and at least 500 word count on blog posts. Also don’t forget to add the descriptions and titles to your web page.
In the past many web designers and developers used images to display fancy text and to create beautiful sliders. Today it has become very simple to include fancy fonts on websites and allowing search engines to use those words (headers and slider text) when ranking the page.
3. You Must Optimize Your Images
In the web world simply displaying an image is not enough, there are some back-end programming that needs to take place so those images will actually help towards your search engine rankings. First, make sure to the image file actually has a meaningful name and not just a series of random numbers. Secondly, make sure to include the html alt and title attributes on every image.
4. You Need a Clear, Text-Based Navigation Structure
This tip comes directly from Google Webmaster Guidelines is to “Make a site with a clear hierarchy and text links. Every page should be reachable from at least one static text link.”
5. Don’t Forget to Redirect
This tip is for when you are updating your website or removing old content. As many of you probably know through experience when content gets deleted anyone who tries to visit that page will receive an error, specifically a 404 error. Did you know that you can instead apply a 301 redirect to occur which will tell search engines that the old page URL is now the new page URL. This will allow you to keep the traffic that page might attract to your site.
Businesses today focus much of their marketing on Website Optimization, Google Ads, and Social Media Campaigns, but many times forget to spend the time to make a successful blog. So here are 11 tips that will help your blog become a powerful marketing tool to help convert followers into customers.
1) A Blog should be part of your site not it’s own identity
Though blogs are used like social media, they should be found directly on your website (www.example.com/blog). Many people host their blog on a separate URLs or forget to include it as part of their site main navigation.
2) Stay focused
Blogs should always circle around one major topic. For you, our clients, this should be your company’s industry. Try to include more than just information about your company by hitting on topics such as big news going on in the industry.
3) Get Social
Though it is easy to setup a blog and begin writing posts, that isn’t enough to get people reading. You need to begin sharing the article around the web. The easiest way to do this would be to post about the article on social media. You should also consider redesigning your homepage so that it include snippets of your latest articles.
4) Importance of titles
The first thing people will see on a new article is it’s title, so make sure it catches their eye. Try to make titles that are short and simple and use trending keywords.
5) Easy reading
People tend to skim articles over rather than reading every word. Make sure to format your post to include headers and bold text for important facts. Also make sure that the summary is well written and grabs the imagination of your audience, as this is the what they read to decide if they want to open the whole article.
6) Spell checking and proof-reading
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is posting an article that is filled with spelling and/or grammar mistakes. Seeing these will instantly turn of your audience and de-value your fact or opinion.
7) Images, images and more images
People always say a picture is worth 1,000 words and that is completely true when referring to blog writing. As mentioned above, people tend to skim through articles before deciding if they want to read the whole post and eye grabbing pictures is a great way to entice visitors to become followers.
8) On time and on track
Your blog is a tool for you to build an audience and to interact with your followers. This means keeping your blog active will keep your audience engaged. Make sure you post on your blog regularly ? once a month a minimum, but preferably once or twice a week.
9) Encourage interaction
You want your audience to be engaged on your blog and one of the bet ways to accomplish this is by encouraging them to share their own opinions. Try ending a post with a question or an invitation to your audience. Having a comment system helps with the blog but it does require more maintenance on your end. Comments are suppose to be like a discussion so it needs to go both ways so make sure to reply to every comment your audience posts. You will also want to monitor your blog for spam comments.
10) Don’t stress over negativity
Though you want to encourage your readers to share, you also need to expect that you are going to get both positive and negative opinions. Don’t avoid blogging because of this. You want your audience to be truthful so don’t block every person that doesn’t love your blog. In fact the negative views might be valid and show you ways to improve your writing or company as a whole.
11) Keep an eye on Analytics
Its important to keep track of what posts are the most popular and most viewed by your audience. All our clients have a wonderful and powerful tool called Google Anayltics built into their sites that shares this and more information for their site and blog.
If you want to learn more about utilizing your blog to the fullest potential or have questions about your site, please contact us today. We’d love to help!
In today’s digital world everything has a password, from important personal information such as credit cards to basic website accounts such as social media. Now with Identity Theft being a very serious crime it is important to protecting all our personal information no matter how insignificant it might feel. So next time you get frustrated with having to create another password remember that it is there for a reason and that it is protecting you. Also don’t get frustrated when the website forces you to create a complex password that involves uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and special characters because your password might be easier to find out then you would think, just ask these people.
Bigcommerce is one of the powerful tools we at Advanced Media Solutions use to create our clients websites. It is important for you to know why we use it and why it’s a great choice for your e-commerce site to be powered by and more importantly what it allows you to do with your store.
Bigcommerce was founded in 2009 as a digital shopping cart that ingrates with a wide range of payment gateways, most importantly Paypal. Bigcommerce gave it’s user everything they needed to create a successful online store, including a securely hosted site, shopping cart, product catalog and more. Bigcommerce today offers many more features then it did then and powers over 95,000 online stores and has processed over $5 Billion in transactions.
What is Bigcommerce used for?
Bigcommerce is a powerful e-commerce content management system, or CMS, that allows everyone and anyone to create a store online. Bigcommerce is aimed primarily at people without much if any web knowledge, but it also customizable allowing professionals, like ourselves, to create powerful and custom e-commerce websites. Bigcommerce takes tasks that every online store must have and streamlines it through it’s easy to use interface, automating a lot of day-to-day repeated tasks and free up time so you can focus on other important aspects of your business.
Why we use Bigcommerce?
There is a reason why these big names use Bigcommerce and that’s why we think your e-commerce store should too. Bigcommerce is adaptable to be a powerful tool whether you have a small, medium or large e-store that sales millions of dollars per year and has a beautiful interface that makes basic store functions easy to manage, such as automated email responses, sales, discounts, order fulfillment, web page content. To top it off Bigcommerce provides us with 24/7 phone support & live chat so that we can keep your stores running at all times!
WordPress is one of the powerful tools we at Advanced Media Solutions use to create our clients websites. It is important for you to know why we use it and why it’s a great choice for your site to be powered by and more importantly what it allows you to do with your site.
WordPress started in 2003 with a single bit of code to enhance the typography and allowed writers to format their writings for the web without knowing any coding, such as creating headers or bolding font. Today those writers are known as bloggers and WordPress is the most popular blogging platform, but it has grown far beyond a tool just for bloggers. WordPress now powers more then 74.6 Millon websites from simple blogs, to large E-commerce stores, to huge Business sites.
What is WordPress used for?
WordPress is used as a Content Management System, or CMS, which is a digital tool that provides a user interface enabling anyone and everyone to build a site. Through WordPress people with no coding knowledge are able to piece together a site through it’s user interface like a puzzle. WordPress became even more powerful by being completely customizable allowing professionals, like ourselves, to build dynamic, unique, and powerful sites that can be continue to be managed after launch by anyone, programmer or not.
Why We use WordPress?
There is a reason why 22% of all websites are built with WordPress, and why some of the biggest names use WordPress. For staters as we stated above WordPress is simple enough for amateur with no experience but completely customizable for professional. Allowing it to be a great tool to build sites in and then pass them to our clients while allowing them to update or add text, image, pages, and links to the website. Unlike some other content managment systems, that you have to pay monthly to use, WordPress is Completely Free for personal or commercial use, this makes the scary cost of building a site less scary.
Google Announced this past February that Google search results will now consider whether a site is mobile-friendly or not in how it ranks sites. This is a huge deal since 100 Billion google search occur each month! In the announcement they stated;
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.
What is does mobile-friendly mean?
Users access the web from a huge range of devices from small-screen phones to huge-screen televisions. Each device presents its own unique benefits and constraints, and your website is expected to work on them all! Website have always been designed for viewing on a computer monitor, that is until about 5 or so years ago when almost everyone and anyone had a smart phone in their pocket. So now websites are designed to be mobile-friendly to be view-able and accessible on these smart phones. Another term you might have heard a lot is Responsive design. Responsive design is the preferred way to program your site to be mobile-friendly, and is the method we use here at Advanced Media Solutions.
Why does Google Care?
Google is the most popular search engine in today’s world, and has become a household term around the world. It’s important to Google that its users find the correct and best content to meet their needs. This means Google needs to focus on how it ranks websites very seriously. In recent years, Google and many others, have been watching how people search the web on a mobile device, desktop, or a tablet and the results have begun to show that each year mobile continues to grow in use and desktop continues to drop. Some of those statistics would be that 80% of internet users own a smart phone and that US adults spend on average 34 hours per month using the internet on smartphones compared to the 27 hours they spend on the PC.
In simple terms this could change how your site is ranked in google search results. Here at Advanced Media Solutions all of our recent sites are designed to be responsive and all our newer clients should have nothing to worry about. For our older clients this means it might be time to update your site, we have many different options about how to go about making your site mobile friendly, so contact us today to get more specifics. Event if you watch the analytics of your site and know that your target audience only uses desktop computer to view your site this might be true precisely because your site is not mobile-friendly.
If all this is confusing and you are not sure what to do, no worries. Google has made it really easy to discover how your site ranks with this Mobile-Friendly Test. If your site does not pass the test, please contact us to talk about how we can change those results for you!