SEO Strategies: Speedy Searches Yield Higher Rankings

In the age of the Internet, site speed is paramount. Smartphones and tablets, in particular, have revolutionized the way consumers search and shop for their goods and services. These days, consumers anywhere can, with a few quick keystrokes, connect with businesses both at home and abroad in a matter of seconds. Especially now that mobile search traffic has outpaced desktop search traffic, Google and other popular search engines expect all websites to load quickly on mobile devices of any kind. The bottom line, according to webmasters and SEO experts, is that optimizing for speed will enhance SEO and improve rank and visibility on results pages.

Google Unveils New “Speed Update”

Accounting for 3.5 billion searches daily, and approximately 1.2 trillion searches per year, Google has surpassed all platforms to become the leading online search engine. Every day, consumers rely on Google to answer questions, provide directions, and generate the most relevant and reliable results concordant with their searches.

To maintain its competitive edge, Google has been rolling out a series of policy changes and updates over the past several years that reflect the shift from desktops to mobile devices. In 2015, Google confirmed that mobile searches surpassed desktop searches for the first time, and as a response to this surge of mobile users, Google developed a “mobile-first” algorithm as a way to compel content developers to design their mobile sites first, prior to designing their desktop sites.

More recently, in June 2018, Google announced that site speed will be the primary ranking factor for mobile searches as well. Although site speed has been used as a ranking signal previously, it was focused exclusively on desktop searches. Google’s aptly named “Speed Update,” will prioritize page speed by down-ranking websites that deliver slow, low-quality loading experiences to users.

Although the “Speed Update” makes page speed a primary factor in determining the order of search results, Google has assured its users that page speed will not be the only criteria that websites need to meet. According to web analysts on Forbes, Google considers over 250 ranking factors to ensure that every website they index is delivering the highest quality results on the first page.*

Yet even with 250 ranking factors in play, webmasters agree that site speed and site design are two of the most important ranking factors Google takes into consideration, as they have the biggest impact on user experience. So let’s explore why site speed, specifically, is so important in more detail.

The Need for [Site] Speed

In today’s ever-changing and fast-paced world, speed is key. As consumers, we want everything—including food, information, money, and news—readily available to us with minimal wait time. This need for speed is most evident online, however, where consumers have even shorter attention spans and higher expectations than they do in the real world. Regardless of whether they are using a desktop or a mobile device, consumers expect the websites they visit to load quickly, without any issues or delays.

Recent surveys conducted by Google indicate that users expect websites to load within three to four seconds. Moreover, statistics show that 40% of users will likely abandon a website and attempt another search if the initial webpage doesn’t load within three seconds or less.** These statistics may seem unrealistic, but they underscore the fundamental truth that a fast site helps you rank higher among the competition.

The issue of site speed is most pronounced on mobile devices, where the average mobile webpage takes approximately fifteen seconds to load. For e-commerce businesses especially, time is truly of the essence when a faster website offering identical goods and services is only a click away.

****https://yoast.com/does-site-speed-influence-seo/#utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=social_buttons

The goal for web developers, then, is not only to create a fast loading site, but to create the fastest mobile site possible. In so doing, web developers will simultaneously decrease their bounce rate, increase their conversion rate, and establish trust and brand loyalty with their client base.

Still, optimizing for speed is about more than enhancing SEO and improving rank and visibility on results pages. Loading speed is the first experience users have with a site; so if the site loads slowly, that first impression will likely be a negative one. Poor page performance and slow loading speed signals, at worst, a lack of respect for your customers and their time.

In sum, prioritizing site speed is the single most important factor when it comes to improving user experience. Sites that load quickly make for an enjoyable browsing experience, which means customers will feel compelled to browse more, buy more, and even tell others about your website. Additionally, adopting the “Speed Update” will keep you in Google’s good graces — and rankings! Users who frequent your site are satisfied not only with the individual site experience, but also with the quality of results that Google provides.

SEO and Site Speed: Analyzing the Metrics

When analyzing the SEO of websites, site speed is one of the first metrics to be measured. Free resources like Chrome User Experience Report, GTMetrix, Lighthouse, and PageSpeed Insights can offer a more comprehensive picture of such metrics.

These resources provide valuable insights into site performance including: advertising impressions, affiliate clicks, engagement rates, and conversion and revenue rates.  Additionally, these metrics allow you to see how well your site is reaching your target demographic, as well as how users interact with your site on both desktop and mobile devices.

**** https://yoast.com/site-speed-tools-suggestions/

It is important to note that these speed tools do not always yield consistent results due to changes in location and internet access. When taken together, however, they offer a broad overview of who your users are, how they access your site, and what they do during their visit. They also measure page speed and optimization, and make suggestions about how performance can be improved.

For best results, you would do well to hire a professional marketing company with the expertise to develop websites that optimize for page speed on both mobile devices and desktops. If you need assistance making your website fast, responsive, and mobile-ready, Perfexion, Inc. is here to help! Our qualified professionals specialize in managing and maximizing clients’ web content, ranking, and search results traffic.

Contact Us for more information!

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* https://www.forbes.com/sites/jiawertz/2017/07/17/why-site-speed-design-can-make-or-break-your-google-ranking/#770de3a83ce9
** ^Same
*** https://yoast.com/does-site-speed-influence-seo/#utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=social_buttons
**** https://yoast.com/site-speed-tools-suggestions/

SEO Strategies: Mobile versus Desktop

Over the past decade, smartphones, tablets, and PCs have facilitated a vast and virtually ubiquitous online presence. Smartphones and tablets, in particular, have revolutionized the way consumers seek, search, and shop for their goods and services. These days, consumers anywhere can, with a few quick keystrokes, connect with local businesses at any point, and from any channel, in a matter of seconds. While mobile SEO, searches and  design have gained significant traction over the last couple of years, accounting for over half of all online traffic, the prevalence of desktop searches should not be overlooked or underestimated.

Mobile versus Desktop: How Do They Differ?

You might be surprised to learn that, despite the ongoing debate about which device is preferable, SEO for mobile and desktop adhere to the same basic principles and best practices. That said, there are some key differences that must be acknowledged and implemented into your overall strategy for each platform. Let’s begin by exploring why mobile and desktop have different rankings, how to compare them, and what these differences mean for your long-term SEO goals.

According to recent statistics gathered by web experts at BrightEdge, 79 percent of listings have a different rank on mobile devices compared with PCs or desktops. Furthermore, they found that the top-ranking result for a given query is different on desktop and mobile 35 percent of the time.* So, what do these statistics really suggest? First, that mobile and desktop searches use vastly different algorithms to determine SERP listing data, and second, that any successful Search Engine Optimization strategy requires a highly developed understanding of user intent.

Most popular browsing platforms—Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Google Chrome—are working to provide the best user experience for searchers, regardless of what device they are using to conduct the search. In order to do this, however, they need to establish some degree of user intent; in short, they need to anticipate the needs of the users and meet them accordingly. Although user intent differs per person (and device) the general consensus is that the intent of mobile users is more immediate and transactional, whereas the intent of desktop users is more generic and informational.

Based on the preceding generalizations, we can further surmise that users conducting searches on their mobile devices are more likely to seek and yield localized results, whereas users searching for products or services on a desktop are more likely to browse generally on various ecommerce sites.

Search Engine Optimization, SEO, is also inextricably linked to the conversions likely to occur on each device. Those of us with smartphones, for example, know firsthand how convenient the click-to-call feature is, which is what most users use. Conversely, desktop users are more inclined to send emails or submit contact forms regarding their specific inquiry.

Deciphering User Intent Through Micro-Moments

Google anticipates and interprets user intent by examining their micro-moments; that is, by analyzing the ways consumers behave online. Using these micro-moments, the search engine can process the incoming queries accordingly. If a user is searching for a product or service in Plymouth Meeting, a map proximate to their location will appear. Alternatively, if a user is searching for specific information, the Google “Quick” answer box will readily appear.**

Micro-moments are particularly telling for mobile users, who are generally in need of immediate results. As an example, a mobile user searching for “fresh produce” is likely looking to buy fresh produce right away, so SERP may return a local map showing grocery stores or farm stands nearby.

Alternatively, on a desktop, a user searching for “fresh produce” is more likely conducting a general search. The user could be looking to order fresh produce online, but they could also digress to researching the health benefits of fresh produce, searching for recipes, or looking at other pertinent content.

In sum, these micro-moments impact how SERP is constructed, and determine the relevancy of the content that appears. Site developers, marketers, and webmasters need to recognize how mobile users interact in these micro-moments—as well as how intent differs between mobile devices and desktop—if they want to ensure that the generated content corresponds to both device and user intent.

What Does the Future Hold for Online Searches?

In 2015, Google confirmed that mobile searches officially surpassed desktop searches worldwide. Two years later, in 2017, research conducted by BrightEdge showed that 57 percent of all online traffic comes from mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.*

Mobile SEO, Mobile Web Design
Mobile and Desktop Traffic

In 2018, mobile searches are continuing to outpace desktop searches, and this upward trend is projected to continue well into the future. As a response to this surge of mobile users, Google is developing a “mobile-first” algorithm as a way to compel webmasters to design their mobile sites first, prior to designing their desktop sites.

The popularity of mobile searches, however, does not diminish or negate the importance or prevalence of desktops, which account for 43 percent of all online traffic. Similar to mobile devices, desktops generate their own SERPs. Furthermore, descriptive keywords and longer articles are better suited, at least presently, for desktops and PCs.

Whatever the future holds for online searches, it is essential to have separate SEO strategies for both platforms and to track and monitor their performances regularly. Free resources like Google Analytics, for example, provide a fuller picture of such metrics — including advertising impressions, affiliate clicks, engagement rates, conversions and revenue rates, and even what percent of search traffic comes from mobile devices and desktop, respectively. These metrics will allow you to see how well you are reaching your target demographic, and also how users interact with your site on both platforms.

For best results, you would do well to hire a professional marketing company with the expertise to develop content that is compatible on both mobile devices and desktops. If you need assistance making your website responsive and mobile-ready, Perfexion, Inc. is here to help. Our qualified professionals specialize in managing and maximizing clients’ web content, ranking, and search results traffic.

Contact us to learn how we can make your website more secure and keep your SEO efforts and strategy strong.

WEBSITE pfxn.com
E-MAIL hello@pfxn.com
CALL 610-783-7660
SAY HELLO

 

* https://searchengineland.com/mobile-desktop-seo-different-results-different-content-strategies-281643
** https://searchenginewatch.com/2018/05/08/seo-strategies-and-keyword-rankings-mobile-versus-desktop/

Protect Your Website from Hackers

How to Protect Your Website from Hackers
(And Save Your SEO Efforts in the Process)

Website security has been garnering a lot of attention lately. More and more website owners and web developers are paying attention to the topic of security and to the very real potential that their website can get hacked. A website that is not well protected or properly optimized for search engine optimization (SEO) is at greater risk of being hacked than one that is. Your SEO results and search engine ranking can take a hit if the security of your website has been threatened.

What are the chances of your website getting hacked? What are the most usual types of website compromises? What steps can be taken to avoid getting hacked and subsequently penalized by Google with a lower search result ranking? When you understand the answers to these questions, you’ll know what steps to take to prevent future hacks and thus ensure your SEO strategy will remain sound.

In March 2017, Google presented information on the state of website security*. Most alarming is their statistic of a 32% increase from 2015 to 2016 of the number of websites that had been hacked. Even more alarming is that Google expects that number to rise as a result of websites becoming more and more outdated and hackers becoming more and more sophisticated and aggressive.

What Are the Most Common Ways a Website Can Be Hacked?

  • Spam – Hackers upload seemingly safe and innocent content and images on legitimate websites with the purpose of redirecting users to malicious websites. Links within the content, or even clicking on or opening a document, can cause damage to your own website.
  • Botnets – Cybercriminals – botmasters – develop a network of computers that are infected with malicious software that is often capable of getting around your antivirus software and other security tools. According to Google, “Botnets steal your resources in order to do malicious things like crack passwords or crack other sites.”
  • Malware – Malware is any type of software that harms people’s data and devices. Because malware can affect your users directly, it is critical to heed all warnings against it.
  • Credit Card Fraud – Of particular concern to e-commerce websites, hackers skim credit card information and steal users’ data. This type of compromise not only hurts your users, it is a sure sign that your website is not secure – and ultimately damages your reputation.

How to Minimize Your Chances of Getting Hacked

If your site has been hacked, finding a solution to the problem can be difficult because botmasters and hackers do their best to always stay a step ahead. When you make the security of your website a top priority, you reduce the potential of hackers, malware, and bots getting in and taking over your website and the data it contains. You can, however, take steps to make sure your website is as secure as it can be.

  • Get critical notices – Once you have added your website to Google’s Search Console and verified that you own it, you will receive important notifications from Google regarding security concerns, such as hacking events, that you will want to address promptly.
  • Prioritize the security of your website – Security should be your highest priority for your website – make sure everyone who contributes to your website operations understands how critically important security is.
  • Update software – Keep all software and plug-ins updated to the latest versions and releases to minimize hacks.
  • Back up your website – Regular back-ups of your website are critical. In the event you are hacked, reverting the site to its pre-hack version is easy and efficient. Update your content management system (CMS) such as WordPress and e-commerce software as necessary and apply all security patches as they are released.
  • Install security software and tools – For added peace of mind and an extra layer of security, install security software.

 

The security of your website should be your number one priority. Without the necessary safeguards on your website, the security of your customers is largely at risk, your own data and information is jeopardized, and your brand and reputation can take a serious hit from which it is difficult, if not impossible, to recover. And, the time and energy investment in developing and implementing your SEO strategy will all be for naught, as your search engine ranking will drop. Don’t become an unfavorable Google statistic. Address weak spots and vulnerabilities and keep the security of your website a top priority.

Perfexion, Inc. takes the security of every client’s website seriously. We use SEO to manage and maximize our clients’ web content, website ranking, and search engine results traffic. And, we take steps such as regularly backing up data and updating all software and plugins, including WordPress CMS, as needed – all to protect your website, which includes not only the content, but your clients’ data.

Contact us to learn how we can make your website more secure and keep your SEO efforts and strategy strong.

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* https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2017/03/nohacked-year-in-review.html

How to Avoid Google’s Manual Actions

Google has established general webmaster quality guidelines that serve to support Google’s efforts to find, index, and rank websites in search results listings. If you (or your web developer) perform an action on your website that Google views as negative or in violation of those guidelines – an illicit, deceptive, or manipulative practice – you will find yourself in trouble with Google sooner or later.

In cases where spam is the violation, Google’s own algorithms automatically detect the violation and demote the website in search rankings. Google also relies on humans to review web pages manually. If these reviewers find a violation of the quality guidelines, they take a manual action to address it. Depending on the circumstances, the manual action could be lowering your website’s ranking, removing specific web pages or content, or, in extreme cases, removing your website completely from Google’s search index.

Information relating to all manual actions taken can be found in your website’s Manual Actions Report. You might also receive the following message on the dashboard of your search console: “This site may not perform as well in Google results because it appears to be in violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.”

Google takes a manual action any time they detect that a website is attempting to trick or manipulate their search engine results and website rankings. While a manual action by Google may appear to be a negative for you or your website, it is not; manual actions are taken to ensure everyone plays by the same rules when it comes to website security, content, SEO, etc.

Manipulation of a website occurs in many forms. A few examples follow.

• Hacking of your website
• User-generated spam that appears on your site’s user profiles or guestbook or forum pages
• Artificial or deceptive external links that point to your site with the intention of manipulating your page ranking
• The content on your site is of little value, low quality, and not unique, such as occurs with content that is generated automatically or from blog posts from others
• Images and pages appearing differently on Google’s search results from those on the page or image where a user actually lands when they click on the image, an action called cloaking
• Overuse of keywords and phrases with the intent of manipulating search rankings

How to Handle a Manual Action

First and foremost, when building your website or developing content for it, understand and adhere to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. As long as you follow the rules, do nothing that intentionally attempts to manipulate your website’s search rankings, and take steps to keep your website secure, you should not be worried about your website receiving a manual action. In fact, web developers should be doing everything they can to avoid appearing to trick Google and instead provide the best possible experience for users and visitors to the website. Of critical importance is to ensure all aspects of the technical SEO for your website are set up and working optimally so that Google can find the website and be certain it is working well and within the guidelines.

Should you receive a manual action notification, review it and take steps to address the issue. Once you have fixed the problem, you can submit a reconsideration request to Google’s webmaster team to manually review your site again.

The web developers and designers at Perfexion, Inc. take the performance of every client’s website seriously. We manage websites and regularly monitor SEO and search results. If we find something off or unusual, we check all analytics and reports to find the issue and then take immediate steps to correct the problem. When your website is properly ranked and reaching your target audience, you can trust we are following the rules.

Contact us to learn how we keep your website safe, ranked appropriately in search engines, and out of cyber jail. We want customers and visitors to your website to find your content valuable and relevant to their needs. Most of all, we want them to feel they can trust you and your website and feel secure doing business with you.

Contact Us for more information!

WEBSITE pfxn.com
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* https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2017/03/nohacked-year-in-review.html

Home Page Must Haves

Website Home Page Must-Haves

The home page of a website has mere seconds to impress and engage those who visit it. People who visit a website for the first time are usually looking for certain information upfront – information that indicates they are in the right place. When users’ initial questions are addressed right away, they’ll be more likely to remain on the website, look around, and respond to a call to action. Think about what you look for or expect to find on the home page of a website you visit for the first time. Then think about what you do if you are unable to quickly or easily find the information you’re looking for. Chances are, you click away and search elsewhere.

The content on your website home page should inform, build reader confidence in your business, and showcase you as credible and trustworthy. Every business is different, so content will vary from one website to another. But the following nine elements are must-haves for every home page.

  1. Spell out what you do – Inform visitors in simple, straightforward terms exactly what your business does. If the purpose of your business is not immediately clear, people will leave your website and go to one that clearly spells out what they do.
  2. Explain how visitors benefit from using your products or services – Beyond saying what you do, make clear the main benefit (or benefits) your offering provides or the problem it solves.
  3. Client testimonials – Strategically place several customer reviews on the home page, as these highlight your experience and build trust. Testimonials that mention the service you provided and the clients’ satisfaction are all you need.
  4. Awards, recognitions, associations, certifications – These showcase your professionalism and expertise, and give you credibility in your industry.
  5. Overview of service offerings – Mentioning your products and services on your home page and linking them to more detailed information serves you three ways. You: 1) better inform visitors about what you do or sell, 2) make it easier for them to click the link for more detailed information, and 3) help your home page rank higher in search engine results.
  6. Contact information – Don’t hide or bury key information such as your phone number, email address, and mailing address. By providing this information, you let customers know your business is legitimate and that they can easily communicate with you. The footer of the page is where most companies place their contact information.
  7. Social media links – If you also market your business on social media platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, or Twitter, you probably want to get the word out as much and as often as possible. Your homepage should include clearly identifiable icons for each to make it easy for users to Like, Follow, Share, and Retweet!
  8. Images and graphics – Quality images that are unique to your business let visitors know what to expect and go far in building credibility. Use stock images sparingly, and make sure all images are high resolution and sized properly.
  9. Call to action – Decide what you want visitors to your website to do once they’re there. Do you want them to subscribe to your email list? Clip a coupon for the offer of the week? Complete a form for more information? Place a logical and clear call to action for whatever makes the most sense for your business.

A home page should provide upfront information about your business that your target customers most want and need to know. Incorrect or insufficient information either forces the user to click around to find what they want, or worse, causes them to leave the website without looking any further. Even if other pages on your website contain exactly what they are looking for, if the home page is unclear, visitors are more likely than not to click away. And when visitors click away after visiting just one page, the bounce rate for your website goes up.

Look at the home page of your website with a critical eye. Does it contain the information a new visitor needs to understand who you are, what you do, and the value you bring? If not, take time to update the home page to add these critical elements, or hire a professional web design and development company with the digital marketing expertise to make sure the home page for your business makes the best first impression it possibly can.

Philadelphia web design company Perfexion, Inc. specializes in web design and development, including search engine and digital marketing. They are experts at building websites that meet users’ needs and add value to the business they represent. Perfexion thrives on helping clients be as successful as possible. They collaborate closely with you to understand your business and put that information to work in every website they build.

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Technical SEO

Don’t Let Your SEO Efforts Go to Waste

Any web developer worth his or her salt is an expert at both off-page and on-page SEO. Simply put, good on-page SEO means a website contains content that is optimized for certain keywords and phrases so that the site’s search rankings and relevance to users are improved. Good off-page SEO means a site gains authority and relevance by building and effectively managing backlinks from other relevant, authoritative sources.

All that attention and focus on having just the right on- and off-page SEO will go to waste if the technical aspects of SEO are ignored or improperly handled. The following checklist contains recommendations for achieving the best results in terms of your site’s user experience, search engine crawling, indexing, and of course, ranking.

  • Set up and manage your website’s sitemap: A sitemap informs search engines about how your website is structured. Make sure your sitemap is clean/error-free, updated when content is posted or removed, concise so crawls can be more effective, and registered in Google Search Console.
  • Check the pages on your website that are indexed by the various search engines, including those that have been restricted from indexing, to make sure the number of pages indexed is about the same as the number of pages on your website.
  • Use an SEO crawler, not just robots.txt, to check that every critical resource on your website is crawlable and not blocked from indexing. An SEO crawler performs a more comprehensive check that includes CSS and JavaScript files, orphan pages (those that are on your site but are not internally linked), and more that might be restricted but should not be.
  • Enhance the frequency with which search engines crawl the pages of your website during a specific period of time – your crawl budget. Google statistics provide the average number of times the pages of your site are crawled daily, and from that you can calculate your monthly crawl budget. Use that intelligence to maximize the crawls that are being performed. How? By removing duplicate content, restricting indexing on pages that don’t support SEO, making crawling more efficient by adding URL parameters, and fixing broken links and redirects.
  • Audit your site’s internal links to make sure the structure of your site is both logical and shallow. For example, check to ensure your site’s important pages are reachable within three clicks of the homepage (the depth of your pages). When fixing broken links, look for those that could be hidden in link tags, sitemaps, and HTTP headers. Address linking on orphan pages to make it easier for visitors and search engines to find them.
  • Audit your website for HTTPS issues that could affect your site’s ranking. Check the different types of content on pages you believe are secure; if you have mixed content, it could be coming from an HTTP connection that is not secure which, in effect, makes your page less secure and can even stop a browser from loading it altogether. Make sure all the links, redirects, and canonical URLs point directly to HTTPS pages to reduce/eliminate the number of unnecessary redirects, which make a website appear slow and eat away at your crawl budget. If your site is still HTTP, consider migrating to HTTPS, given that Google uses HTTPS as one of its ranking signals.
  • Make sure your site’s pages load in two seconds or less. Google factors speed when ranking a site, and a page that loads quickly and efficiently provides an optimum user experience as well as improves your bounce and conversion rates because users will be less inclined to click away from a page that has loaded quickly.
  • Prioritize the mobile friendliness of your website and perform an in-depth audit of the site. With search queries from mobile devices on a steady rise, Google is planning to change how it indexes website pages. They will soon begin indexing mobile versions of websites first, rather than their desktop versions. Google provides a mobile-friendly test that lets you check a variety of criteria such as text size, plugins, how pages are viewed, and more. The key is to perform the test on every landing page of your site, since Google determines mobile friendliness on a page by page basis.
  • Just as you need to restart your computer for software updates to take effect, you should have search engines re-crawl your website to make sure fixes and changes you make to your site go immediately into effect. You can submit requests to Google and Bing to re-crawl and re-index on a URL basis or on your entire website.

By systematically addressing the technical areas of your website that impact SEO, you both improve the ability of your site to rank well in searches and enhance the user experience across the entire site. The end results are well worth the effort. At Perfexion, Inc. we specialize in making sure clients’ websites are technically sound and perform to the best of their ability.

Note: Thanks to Link-Assistant.com (https://www.link-assistant.com/news/technical-seo-audit.html) for the valuable tips presented here.

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Bad Website and Website Concerns

Website Issues – Technical SEO

Top 5 Website Issues

You’ve spent hours building and setting up your website. It’s finally done. You set up analytics to track how well your website performs. At the end of that arduous journey, you even give yourself a pat on the back as congratulations for your accomplishment. Unfortunately, you’re the only one passing out congratulations. Why? Because the average user finds the aesthetic presentation of your website unattractive and the organization and information lacking. Along the way, you failed to treat the design and development of your website the way you would build and design a bricks-and-mortar store.

A user’s experience on a website should be every bit as good as a customer’s physical in-store experience. Customers and potential customers who walk into a store off the street should feel welcome and be able to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily. If the products in your store are set up willy nilly on the shelves, sales people shout out to you from opposite sides of the building, and dust bunnies float around your ankles, chances are good you are going to turn around and walk right out. The same holds true for your website. One mistake on your site is all it takes to destroy credibility in your business and can keep a user away for life.

Most people have heard the phrase “Build it, and they will come,” and understand the meaning it espouses. But, the phrase “Build it well, and they will come” more correctly promotes the analogous idea that a website must be done well for people to not only come, but to stay and conduct business – shop, buy, call, contact – whatever you want them to do.

Most people look at a variety of websites on any given day, whether on their phones, their laptops, or their tablets. Most of these same people don’t give the websites they view a second thought because these sites look nice, feel comfortable, and function properly. The user achieves whatever it is they went to the site for in the first place. In a word, their user experience is optimum. And when user experience is good, the website’s bounce rate – the rate at which users leave a site after visiting just a single page – is low.

What do good websites have (or do) that bad ones don’t? Because your website is your virtual store, ease and convenience of use are not all that matter. Consider the distinct aspects of your website’s design and development, and how they might affect a user’s decision to stay or leave. By addressing these appropriately, you ensure visitors have the best possible experience and will want to keep coming back for more.

Top Website Issues

Top Website Technical Issues, Technical SEO
Top Website Technical Issues, Technical SEO

The design and function of your website is just as important as the information your site provides and the products and services you sell there. Professional web designers and developers are trained to build websites that appeal visually, function appropriately, attract users, and keep bounce rates down. Don’t jeopardize the profitability of your business by building your own website and missing the mark on any of these key details.

Philadelphia web design company Perfexion, Inc. specializes in web design and development, including monitoring and managing the performance of clients’ websites. They are experts at building brands and all types of online marketing. Because they thrive on helping clients be as successful as possible, they collaborate with you to understand your business and build a website that targets your ideal customer and increases relevant traffic.

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Responsive Web Design: Every Search, Click, and Scroll Matters

Responsive Web Design: Every Search, Click, and Scroll Matters

When it comes to responsive websites, customer service and user experience go hand in hand. If users have a good experience with a website that responds to their every search, click, and scroll – that is, with every interaction they have on that site – they will equate those interactions to good customer service. The opposite holds true as well. Your products and services may be the best in the business, but if a user can’t locate them on your website, or they click on a link and are taken to an error page, or worse, they can’t properly view your website on their mobile device, they will equate that to poor customer service. At which time, they will click away and never return.

Responsive websites should always be fully accessible, readable, and functional for people who view them (error-free goes without saying) – regardless of the type or size of screen the website is being viewed from. Statistics indicate that more than 65% of web searches performed today are done on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. If your website does not adjust dynamically for ease of reading on different devices, or images get blurry when a user pinches and expands them, your website is not responsive or mobile ready.

When building your website, responsiveness of design is one key factor to keep in mind. WordPress, the most popular tool for creating and managing websites and blogs, offers plenty of website themes with responsive design. That means that users will be able to easily read and use your website whether they’re looking at it on their desktop computer, their laptop, their tablet, or their mobile phone.

WordPress is popular for a variety of reasons, not the least of which are its ease of use and community forum that provides support on virtually any topic. In addition, WordPress as a content management system (CMS) offers:

  • Easy content creation and publication of web pages, posts, media, and more
  • Control over who can access/update your website and the functions they are permitted to perform
  • Drag-and-drop functionality to quickly and easily add images and other media to your website
  • Plugins to add other features such as calendars and social media
  • Search engine optimization so your website gets ranked and found on the internet

If your website is more informational and contains fewer functions than a website designed specifically for e-commerce, you can manage it perfectly well with WordPress CMS. As you build, change, and manage your WordPress website, with its responsive design functionality, new content and features will adapt to the responsive design, so you can be assured of always providing the best customer service and user experience to anyone who visits your website.

Two other content management systems assure website owners of responsiveness of design when used: Sitefinity™ and Kentico. If your website is complex, such as an extensive corporate website, and/or contains e-commerce (online shopping) functionality, Sitefinity and Kentico offer high-end CMS solutions to support the detailed and more technical needs these types of websites require.

Similar to WordPress in terms of the page management and user access features they offer, Sitefinity and Kentico offer additional functionality right out of the box:

  • Websites are mobile ready, which means you create your website once and it automatically adapts to a variety of devices and screen sizes. You can preview how your website will appear on different screen sizes, and adjust content if necessary.
  • With responsiveness of design, you present a unified brand message and you do so consistently across all types of devices and marketing channels such as social media, which makes for a singular user brand experience.

Beyond the direct website experience, a CMS can be set up for other functions you want as part of your user experience. For example, you probably want to include a series of automated emails to be sent as certain user activity triggers them: Welcome, abandoned cart, Thank You, delivery confirmation, and more. Or you want to send product news, sale information, or coupons. Given the mobile nature of our society, more people are doing business on their mobile devices than on desktop computers. Responsive design makes sure your entire message gets seen and is easy to respond to, so people will want to do business with you.

Website owners should choose the most appropriate content management system for their needs – based on the amount and level of functionality and complexity of their website. But, whether your website is simple or complex, if you want your website to display accurately on both desktop and mobile devices, make sure every aspect of your website contains responsiveness of design.

Responsive design is vital to engaging customers and users. If they can’t view and navigate around your site on their smartphone or tablet, they will move on to one they can. If you have limited expertise in website design and management, or you would rather spend time running your business than managing your website, consider consulting with a professional web design and development company.

We are a Philadelphia-based web design and development company located in Plymouth Meeting just outside King of Prussia.  We are a web design and development company that understands responsive design and how it interplays with content management systems – CMS.  Perfexion specializes in helping clients market their business online effectively – and profitably. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.

Contact Us Today!

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E-MAIL hello@pfxn.com
CALL 610-783-7660
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Why Hire a Professional Web Design Company

Why Hire a Professional Website Design Company

Few business owners dispute the need to have a website. How else will current and prospective customers know about the products and services their business offers and the unique value they bring to the market? Or the company’s history and mission? Or how to find or communicate with the business? Frequent changes and updates to a website support a company’s ability to attract new customers and expand into different markets, if desired.

Done right, a website also serves as a forum for business owners to target, reach, and communicate with, desired clients; educate and inform visitors to their site about topics related to business offerings via blogs, company updates, or a FAQ section; and receive feedback, inquiries, and concerns about customer needs.

Some business owners prefer to design and build their website themselves, via readily available user-friendly apps and platforms (although user-friendly is debatable). They might be looking to save money or already have a design in mind. Sound familiar? While these may seem like good reasons to build your own website, by doing your own, you risk losing business if your website comes across as unprofessional, disorganized, not secure—or worse, no one knows your website exists.

Your site may have eye-catching colors, attractive images, and easy-to-read/easy-to-understand content (text). But these are only a small portion of what goes into making an effective, high-performing website. For all the beauty and graphics your site displays, if your website is not coming up in internet searches, the weekend and evening hours you spent building the site were for naught.

Professional Web Design Company

The 4 Best Reasons to Hire a Professional Web  Development Firm
If you’re still not convinced your website needs a professional touch, consider these top 4 reasons to hire a professional web design company.

1. Visual appeal and function – The text, colors, and graphics on your website matter. The look and feel of your website, and how easily users can navigate the pages and find the information they’re looking for also matter. Professional designers will tie these elements together to make sure your website is attractive and functional, as well as user-centered.

2. Search engine optimization – Search engine optimization (SEO) is critical if your website is to be found when people perform an internet search for your type of business on one of the major search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, or Bing. This traffic, derived from organic searches rather than from a user clicking on an ad, is like gold. The the traffic is due to people looking for exactly what you have to offer! SEO involves using both the right keywords and phrases as well as the right creative elements to improve your search engine rankings and generate traffic to your website.

Web designers work in conjunction with web developers, who add the necessary ingredients behind the scenes to ensure a website not only gets found on the internet, but also ranks high in relevant searches.
What is more, web design, along with solid web development, makes use of programming language, behind-the-scenes codes and tags, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to set up all the technical aspects of a website.

3. Value-added technology – Every website can benefit from using additional technologies that help drive traffic to the site. These include videos that demonstrate how products work, an RSS feed that provides the latest industry updates, and links to other pages or relevant materials on the internet or on social media, among others. And, when properly positioned and coded, all enhance the ranking of your website for internet searches. Do-it-yourself web designers either don’t include these valuable technologies or they add or place them in a way that does not benefit the business.

4. Results tracking and analytics – A professional web designer will know how to design your website so you get more conversions.  Website developers will drive the actions you want visitors to your website to complete. This includes filling out a contact form, click to another page, call you, or buy a product. The pros will set up your Google Analytics so you can track results via a dashboard. To measure success, you’ll track such Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) as new visitors to your website vs. repeat visitors, number of visits to your site before a user makes a purchase. Other KPIs are bounce rate (how often a user clicks off a page),  time on a page —and many others. By understanding these metrics, you or your designer will know what is working and where you might need to make changes to improve performance.

Be Competitive

If you truly wish to be competitive in the online marketplace, use a professional web design service for your website. The vast majority of businesses today rely on their website—and its optimum performance—for the success of their operations. The value provided by a web design service far outweighs the results you might obtain by designing and managing your website on your own. For more information on how a professional web designer can help your business, contact Philadelphia based Perfexion, Inc. today. We specialize in helping clients market their business online effectively and profitably. We are a Philadelphia-based web design and development company located in Plymouth Meeting just outside King of Prussia. We specialize in making sure clients’ websites are technically sound and perform to the best of their ability at all times.

Contact Us Today!

WEBSITE pfxn.com
E-MAIL hello@pfxn.com
CALL 610-783-7660
SAY HELLO