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Web Design Blog

Googles "Mobilegeddon" and what it means for you

The Marketing and Web Design Industry is up in arms this week, with Google's latest algorithm update being dubbed 'Mobilegeddon.' The update that was rolled out on the 21st April is sending SEO experts and more into a frenzy with the worry that websites that do not have a mobile site or are not deemed "mobile friendly" will take a plunge in Google rankings.

Google's algorithm change aims to rank sites it labels as “mobile-friendly” higher on mobile search results, for mobile users only. The new change does not effect desktop searches at all. 

Google have said:

"We’re boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly pages on mobile search results. Now searchers can more easily find high-quality and relevant results where text is readable without tapping or zooming, tap targets are spaced appropriately, and the page avoids unplayable content or horizontal scrolling."

What you need to know: 

The new Google update only:
  •     Affects search rankings on mobile device
  •     Affects search results in all languages globally
  •     Applies to individual pages, not entire websites

Why are Google doing this? 

Google announced plans to roll out mobile ranking changes a few months ago and said that they had started labeling sites as “mobile-friendly” to determine which had been optimised specifically for mobile devices. 

Normally any changes to the Google algorithm are done subtly and without announcement, but in a move to make sure web developers and the web industry were well equipped, they gave the following criteria that websites need, in order to be deemed 'mobile friendly.' 

The Criteria:

In order for your website to be classed as "mobile friendly" it will need to meet the following criteria:

  • Avoids software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash Animation
  • Uses text that is readable without zooming
  • Sizes content to the screen so users don’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom
  • Places links far enough apart so that the correct one can be easily tapped

It's as simple as that. If your website meets those three criteria, Google gives your site the green light.

How do I know if my site is mobile friendly?

Google have provided a simple solution to those who want to know if Google deems their website as "mobile friendly" which you can visit and enter your website link into. 

If my site is not mobile friendly, how do I go about making it so?

'Mobilegeddon' shouldn't worry you right away because Google are rolling this out steadily over the coming weeks & months. However if your search rankings matter to you, and it's important for people browsing your website on their mobiles to have a good user experience, it is worth investing in a mobile site. 

The first thing to do is to get in touch with your web designer. Most web design companies (if not all) will have a mobile platform where you can purchase a mobile version of your website to be made.

Of course the mobile friendly label is just one of many signals that Google uses to rank search results, so we can safely say that Google isn't going to just start promoting sites because they're mobile friendly... they still have to be relevant and useful to the search terms given.

If you have any questions at all, do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

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Feeling Social?

When it comes to marketing your website, did you know that you have a FREE and very powerful tool at the tips of your fingers?

Social Media is the perfect way to reach your potential target audience, raise awareness of your brand, interact with your existing clients and more, without cost.

If you don’t have Social Media accounts for your company already, let us try and persuade you to give it a go. All you need to do is sign up!

You want to stay ahead of your competition right?

You can improve your market knowledge, and get ahead of your competitors by using Social Media accounts such as Facebook and Twitter.

How? Because you can monitor what your competitors are up to on Social Media too. Not only can you see what information they are posting but you can see how successful their Social Media pages are. With this kind of intel, it allows you to make decisions that will impact on your strategy. Whether it’s to follow in a similar vein or do something completely different, Social Media can be your insight into what others are getting out of your competitors and how you can get ahead of the game.

You want to increase your website traffic and search ranking.

Who doesn’t?

Social Media is the perfect place to promote and attempt to direct people to your website pages. You can use Social Media to advertise, entice and bring people over to take a look at what you have to offer, without giving all of the information away on your Social Media pages.

The more good quality and fresh, engaging content you put out there, the better your Search Engine ranking will be. It’s simple really.

You want to know what your customers/ clients want?

Okay, so Social Media isn’t going to give you the gift of reading minds, but it will give you a great deal of knowledge about your intended audience.

You can see what types of people you are attracting to your pages, what their interests are, what country they live in, whether they are male or female and you can even see at what time they are most active on Social Media… knowledge is power. And a brilliant thing to have when deciding on your next product/ service/ business strategy.

You want to hear your clients/ customers feedback?
But you want to have the ability to moderate it just in case…

No problem. You can interact with your clients or customers via Social Media and hear their feedback. Whether it’s constructive or simply a raving review, it’s a good thing for people to see how well you deal with criticism or praise. A swift and modest response will do you the world of good, and having complete control over your pages, and putting your stamp on how you run your business is key.

You want to bring about brand awareness and advertise your company

But you have a budget?

Social Media lets you increase brand awareness, advertise your business and all the services/ products you have, and it increases your audience reach with little to no cost. Social Media is a FREE marketing platform. And if you aren’t already taking advantage of it, you really should get started right away.

Want to see some examples?

Simply like our Facebook page,
Follow us on Twitter,
Or connect with us on Google+

We’re more than happy to follow/ like/ connect with you also… every like helps!
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Website of the Week - Geotech Soil Stabilisation Specialists

This week's favourite website goes to the Specialists at Geotech Soil Stabilisation. The Team in Southampton love the look of this website and had a lot of fun putting it together page by page. The end result is fun to explore and helps explain exactly what it is 'Geotech Soil Stabilisation Solutions' can do and why they are the best option in their field.

Just to give you a brief introduction into the Geotech method, and why they are different to other resurfacing options, you need to know that they use a chemical agent technology to make soil stronger and more stable so that the land can then be used for roads and buildings to be directly built on. The reason this is better than traditional methods (excavating and transporting old soil before laying and compacting new soil) is that with Geotech, there is less travel time needed for lorries, it takes less time overall, less material is needed and less harmful Carbon Dioxide is produced.

Back to the website - thanks to a clever logo and beautiful images taken and supplied by the team at Geotech themselves, it was a joy to decorate and many of the design elements, large and small, make reference to them. The arrows and soil textures in the background combined with the detailed, beautifully filtered photographs really make the panels a feature of their own and brings the pages to life while making each one individual and memorable.

It's also worth noting the custom social media icons in the top right hand corner which use a special 'style' to appear as if they rotate into colour. As the client is very active on Social Media and utilises everything from the more informal sites like Twitter to the business orientated ones like LinkedIn, it works well to have them all easily accessible and to ensure they stand out.

The main challenge with this website was to do justice the service that Geotech carries out. This website was built around that idea and uses everything from step by step 'story' carousels to visual graphs (created by the client) to explain to visitors of the website what it is they do. What we really wanted was to ensure that visitors to the website remember Geotech but also that they understood quickly the service being offered. This is in large part the reasoning behind the panel like layout and the number of visual aids that make memorable the understanding of everything from the process, the pros and the variations on the service they could ask for.

Geotech has actually been a long standing client of ours and has now gone through two redesigns. Let's have a look at the way the website has evolved over the years:

Original Design:

1st Redesign:

2nd Redesign:

If you need help making your website look the best it can be or just want a way to represent and explain your business to those on the web, don't hesitate to get in touch with us.

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Round up of April Fools Day Shenanigans

In the tech world, April Fools’ Day is welcomed with arms wide open. It’s expected more often than not from companies such as Google, Amazon and Microsoft typically techies search high and low for these pranks rather than be fooled by them. April Fools’ Day 2015 was no different as one of the greatest days of the year where companies big and small can show their humorous side.

There were many “new releases” our favourites include Reebok’s new fragrance Swět, The HTC Sok, Office 2016 for Cats by Microsoft, The FIAT 499, IKEAs KÄT sofa and Deviant’s new Stylus IRL.

We also found some great pranks from our friends down under. New, dedicated airport lounges for pets from Virgin Australia with pampering sessions and meals before you fly sound very cool but winner for digital marketing team members Tom and Max was Mount Gambier Airport installing a new cycle lane on the runway.

“Keeping at least 1.5 metres of separation between an aircraft’s powerful engines and the cyclists had previously been a challenge, with riders forced to take the perimeter roads rather than the most direct option via the runway.”

Google, with more than 100 products and teams meant many smart and well-produced product release videos – one well-received video ‘explained’ how the world is tilting and by 2055 Australia will be in the Northern Hemisphere.

Google Japan also jumped on board too (kindly using English subtitles on YouTube) with the new "keyless keyboard" – using a party horn to spell letters on smart devices - and the Google Panda, an invention so well designed and expertly covered you wouldn’t be alone to think it was real.

To add to the list Google also made com.google - an exact mirror of Google.com flipped horizontally, turned Google Maps into Pac Maps – a playable version of PacMan on Google Maps, announced the Smartbox “by Inbox, by Gmail, by Google” for your physical mail and Dial-up mode on Google Fiber to slow down your internet connection so you can “have more time doing the little things”.

 If you are a Redditor (visitor of link sharing website Reddit) you have probably already seen the Reddit button. The button is an online button with a 60 second timer. Whenever someone presses the button, the timer resets. Simple. Right? After users have clicked the button they get a number and colour assigned to them based on what time they clicked the button, and users can’t click more than once. Maybe not so simple. Even users on new Reddit accounts can’t click - to ensure the timer will run out someday. Best part is no one knows what will happen when the timer runs out. It's amazing how easily we are influenced by little things and how people love to get on trends.

Happy April!

With many pranks being very obvious that they aren’t real there was some confusion when Amazon released the latest enhancement to the Amazon experience, Amazon Dash. Dash is a physical button you can place anywhere in the house and which, when pressed, orders a product for you so you don't have to get it on your next shop. It will be simply delivered straight to your door. Run out of washing powder? Press the button. On social media some people were getting a bit confused. Whilst it was released on the 31st March most people didn't see it until the 1st of April – dismissing the product as an April Fools’ prank.

It was only after the confusion when visiting the Amazon homepage the official prank was in full swing. Amazon.com had reverted to its enduring (almost like the 2015 version) 1999 layout and design.

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