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We now continue our continuation of our Business Website Essentials series, where we go over simple tasks to improve your website. If you have not read Part I of this series posted last week, we recommend that you go and check it out; we discussed topics such as GDPR compliance and SSL certificates. This post will cover a few tips regarding social media integration and website speed; please keep in mind that we have a homework assignment for you at the end of this post.
If you own a business, social media is one of the most important marketing tools that you have next to your website; it is important to ensure that there is a connection between your website and any social media networks your business is currently using (for more information about using social media for your business, please check out our previous post: What Your Business Should Be Doing On Social Media). Each person will have their own preference of which network they want to use, so you should understand that marketing your business on only one or a few platforms will only reach a limited amount of people. Your business should create accounts for as many social media networks where relevant; this will help increase your business’ exposure across the web. For example, people who are not using Facebook may find you on Twitter; by marketing across different platforms you are alienating less people.
Remember that #socialmediamarketing is vital part of #smallbusinessmarketing. On your #business website, ensure that the #socialmedia icons are upfront and clear (preferably at the top of the website). This is an easy to increase the likes and follows on any social networks that you use for your business. #contentmarketing #contentmarketingtips #digitalmarketing #digitalmarketingtips #businessmarketing #businessmarketingtips #marketing #marketingtips #smallbusinessmarketingtips #webdesign #websitedesign #businessgrowth #socialmediamarketingtips #smallbusiness
Last week, we posted informative graphics related with tips for having the proper business website; one of those posts (above) discusses the use of social media icons on your website. This is one of the most important steps in bridging the gap between your business website and your social media accounts. Make sure that these icons are clear and upfront on your website; this is one of the best ways to gain followers on your accounts without having to ask people. We prefer to place them at the top of your website as it makes it harder to miss them versus placing them at the bottom; if you want them to be a little more “in your face” then we recommend trying the Social Media Flying Icons plugin by Acurax. The icons will float up and down as you scroll through the page, so your visitors will never miss them. See the plugin in action; we just implemented it in our latest website project that we just completed at the time of this posting: Stone Cold Meats. Additionally, you should place social media icons in your company email’s signature line to help gain some additional followers.
Today’s #blogging tip for #business. Make sure people have the ability to share your content on #socialmedia with a set of social sharing buttons. #blog #bloggingtips #socialmedia #socialmediatips #socialmediamarketing #socialmediamarketingtips #businesstips #businessmarketing #businessmarketingtips #smallbusiness #smallbusinessmarketing #smallbusinessmarketingtips #marketing #marketingtips #contentmarketing #contentmarketingtips #digitalmarketing #digitalmarketingtips #facebook #facebookmarketing #twitter #twittermarketing #linkedin #linkedinmarketing #pinterest #pinterestmarketing #instagram #instagrammarketing
Prevent those spam bots leaving ugly links and solicitations from leaving comments on your #blog by only allowing people with #socialmedia accounts to sign in and leave comments. #spambots #spam #contentmarketing #contentmarketingtips #digitalmarketing #digitalmarketingtips #bloggingtips #socialmedia #socialmediatips #socialmediamarketing #socialmediamarketingtips #marketing #marketingtips #business #businesstips #smallbusiness #smallbusinessmarketing #smallbusinessmarketingtips #cybersecurity #cybersecuritytips
Photos are an important part of your website; without them you would not be able to present information in an eye-catching manner as no one is going to look at a website that is only text. When you upload photos into your website, it is important to optimize them for both speed and quality. Large photo files can slow your website down, especially if they over 2MB large; additionally if your photos contain EXIF data (if they come straight from a camera) then this will also increase their file sizes as well. On WordPress, there are many plugins that you can use that will compress the images down to an appropriate size upon upload. We recommend either EWWW Image Optimizer or Smush; both of these plugins are great for compressing your photos’ file size upon uploading so you don’t have to worry about resizing each one yourself. Additionally, both of these plugins can remove the EXIF data from the photos upon upload to decrease their file sizes even more. When compression of your photos occurs, the file size is decreased but the not the quality of the photo. In addition to making sure that your photos are compressed to keep your site speed up, you will also want to ensure that any photos you upload will look good on Apple devices using Retina displays. Retina displays are of much higher quality than your typical monitor or TV screen; it is important to know that Retina renders pixel perfect graphics. Your photos and graphics might look nice on a standard display, but on Retina they may look extremely pixelated. There is a WordPress plugin to help solve such a problem: WP Retina 2x. This plugin generates the proper sizes for your uploaded photos and displays optimized sizes for Retina displays. There is no reason for you to not have this plugin installed on your website; it is important to keep in mind that this plugin is not compatible with Jetpack’s Image CDN (Content Delivery Network) as it moves the images away. They recommend that you use another CDN, such as Cloudflare which is what we will go over next.
Image from Wikipedia.
A content delivery network, or CDN is a service that distributes content from several servers across the world to the end users requesting the content. By serving your website’s content and files from a CDN, you can help increase your site speed and ensure that your files get served to the users in a timely manner. As we mentioned before, Jetpack has an Image CDN that is used for serving your website’s photos from their servers to help increase your site speed. While it is a great service, we already mentioned it is not compatible with WP Retina 2x (we recommend that you use this plugin). There is a free alternative that you can use: Cloudflare. They have a free plan and the service integrates with WordPress easily with their plugin; simply sign up at their website for a free account and follow the steps to set up your website. Then download the Cloudflare plugin, which has the option to optimize their service for your WordPress site on one click. Using a CDN is a vital step in optimizing your website; your SEO will be enhanced and your bounce rate will decrease due to lower load times.
Now that we have covered steps for optimizing your website for business, we have a homework assignment for you. We want you to try something new and exciting to help expand your business’ marketing footprint. Your website is one of your most important marketing tools, so you should use it to its fullest capacity. There are many ways you can market yourself that you may not have considered! Step out of your comfort zone and try one of these ideas. Why not educate your visitors with a company YouTube channel? You do not need a fancy TV or movie camera to do this; you can do this with your phone. How about a podcast educating your audience? People subscribe to podcasts all of the time and you do not need any fancy radio station equipment to do this. Android users, you can podcast straight from your phone with the new Google Podcasts app; iOS users can use the Opinion app. If you prefer to podcast by computer, then you can record using Avid’s Pro Tools First which is a free version of their professional Pro Tools software used widely in the music industry. It is available for both Windows and Mac and is extremely powerful with a lot of features from the paid version; for free software this cannot be beat. Adobe Creative Cloud subscribers, you can create podcasts using Adobe Audition (also available for Windows and Mac). You can also try to create engagement by holding live webinars, which you can easily do with Google Hangouts or Facebook Live. Your homework is to try one of these methods to increase both business exposure and user engagement. Try them out and let us know.
We will be happy to help you get started in trying a new marketing method!
Disclaimer: This post is for educational purposes only. Creativity Design Group does not have any connections or affiliations with any of the companies or brands mentioned in the post.
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