Category Archives: Web tip

Web tip – Respond to Mobilegeddon with responsive design

Is Google’s mobilegeddon stressing you out? Are you one of the many brands scrambling to optimize their website for mobile users today, the day Google’s search update went into effect?

Today, we’ll demonstrate why responsive design is the best choice for your website to respond (get it?) to Google’s search update.

What’s all the fuss about?

Google is boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly sites on mobile search results starting today (April 21). Ignore the doomsayers asking whether your site will survive this update. We promise it will, but if your site isn’t mobile optimized, you’ll start seeing your traffic drop.

We broke down how Google’s change will affect your organic traffic last month, but to simplify: Google wants to deliver the best possible search results to every searcher and almost everyone is searching Google from their smartphones at one time or another. (According to GlobalWebIndex, 80% of online adults own a smartphone (50% own a tablet) and spend 1.85 hours a day online from their mobile devices.)

If someone is searching for a new blender, Google intends to deliver the best blender vendors and blender reviews available. That means relevant information, and yes, an optimized user experience on the site.

If Google has to pick between a blender vendor with a site optimized for easy shopping from a smartphone, or a site where the searcher has to pinch to zoom to see blender options, squint to see the text, and struggle to click the Buy Now button, Google is serving up the optimized site – starting today.

The non-mobile-optimized website can still be found on Google, of course, but it will be lower in rankings than the mobile-friendly vendor, and lose traffic as a result.

Responsive design is the best response to Mobilegeddon

Responsive design is a mobile-friendly design technique that serves the same code on the same URL regardless of device (desktop, tablet, mobile), but renders the display differently based on the screen size. Responsive design ensures that a website visitor receives a fantastic user experience, whether they are on a smartphone, tablet or desktop, like so:

Currey-Co-Responsive-Design-Example

Responsive is a set of choices a developer makes to ensure the site is easy to interact with from all devices. A simple design that isn’t cluttered or content heavy, and won’t take a decade to load on a cell phone is a safe start. Navigation is often streamlined to make finding information easier and imagery and icons can also guide the visitor to pertinent content without forcing them to scroll a lot.

There are other design techniques (dynamic serving and separate URLs are two approaches), but responsive design is Google’s recommended design pattern. We recommend responsive to our own clients because it’s easier to maintain (updating one site vs. two), and you get all the mobile-friendly enhanced usability. See how it’s just as easy to input contact information and sign up for our client Mud Pie’s emails from both the desktop and phone.

MudPie-Responsive-Design-Example

Takeaways

Google’s search update wasn’t a haphazard decision to decrease your organic traffic. Mobile is simply a channel embraced by everyday users. It’s a good thing. Every time someone searches for your site, regardless of the device they use, is an opportunity for you to capture their attention. Google is making it easier for brands to capture the attention of their mobile audience.

If you want to maintain optimal levels of search traffic, than you need a mobile-friendly website. We build mobile-friendly and responsive websites and emails for tons of clients. Reach out if we can help you map out your mobile strategy. We also write about both topics regularly, so we’ll keep you up to date.

Webinar Recap – The Store Of The Future

Did you sit in on yesterday’s webinar, Connecting Devices and Data to Create the Store of the Future? The webinar covered personalization and technology in retail and had us totally geeking out. A round of applause for the host, Alicia Fiorletta of Retail TouchPoints, and the awesome speakers:

Webinar-recap-panelists

How often do you sit in on a webinar that talks about delivering a tailored customer experience, while showing off super cool technologies like RFID, augmented reality, robots (I mean, ROBOTS)?

Check out just a few of the sci-fi-ish technologies that ambitious retailers are adding into their brick and mortar stores to bridge the gap between the digital and in-store experience:

The New StoreThe webinar covered a ton of information, but we summarized a few of our favorite points for you.

Digital isn’t killing retail

The speakers agree that digital isn’t replacing retail. In fact, 94% of total retail sales are still generated at brick and mortar stores (eMarketer). Consumers visit retail stores because they’re seeking a comfortable, familiar, sensory experience. They want to touch and see your products and get feedback from your sales reps. Smart retailers are using digital to enhance and augment the retail experience, not replace it.

Continue reading Webinar Recap – The Store Of The Future

Web tip – omni channel marketing increases revenue

Whereoware-Currey-Case-Study-The-Main-EventEach year, wholesale manufacturer of distinctive lighting and home furnishings Currey & Company discounts inventory at their very successful The Main Event sale. Their challenge is to consistently raise the bar to top the previous year’s success.

Currey teamed with digital agency Whereoware to develop an omni channel marketing strategy: showcasing the sale prominently on their website; leveraging customer data to segment, target, and personalize a series of email campaigns; and developing a sale-specific digital catalog in their mobile application, the Spotlight Sales iPad app.

The result? Compared to the previous successful year, Currey increased revenue 22%.

Get the case study to see how an omni channel marketing approach took Currey’s annual sale to the next level!

 

Web tip – Is your content epic? Get our content creation guide

Write quality contentAccording to Demand Metric, 93% of marketers rate interactive content effective for educating buyers. Interactive content educates and entertains your customers while familiarizing them with your brand and products. Customers are more likely to choose your product over an unknown competitor, because you’ve nurtured their relationship and consistently delivered value without asking for anything in return.

Not only does great content interest your leads and customers, but it also boosts your SEO rankings, keeps your website fresh and exciting, and provides you great resources to email your audience.

Getting started with interactive content

Your first step is figuring out the kind of content your buyers find meaningful. Talk with your sales team and use their experience interacting with customers to come up with initial topics.

Next, identify customer personas; a way of categorizing your audience based on variables like age, interest, buying history, position in the purchase lifecycle, etc. Personas help you better understand your audience, so you can identify and write content that’s more personal and relevant to their needs.

Let’s say you have a bike shop called Round&Round. After identifying your customer personas, map out their needs and interests at all the stages between finding your company and buying your products. You’ll use this list to develop content pieces to speak to their needs at each stage and guide them through the buying cycle.

Generally, browsing customers go through similar phases: awareness, consideration, purchase, and repurchase. Your “awareness” piece introduces your company and provide some background information to show you’re reputable. The “consideration” phase assists your customers in narrowing down their choices and offers key considerations. Content at the “purchase” phase makes the case for buying from your company, and lastly during the “repurchase” phase, you’ll follow up with opportunities to upsell.

For this example, see how we divided customers into personas and personalized content pieces to lead them through purchase stages:

bikerpersonas

Continue reading Web tip – Is your content epic? Get our content creation guide

Web tip – see personalization in action – infographic

Delivering personalized online experiences to your customers is NOT a buzzword or a passing trend – it’s a better way to do business.

What does personalization even mean?

Simply put, personalization is nurturing and connecting with your customers by giving them what they want, when they want it, and at the appropriate touchpoint (online + offline).  We know it’s tricky to visualize how personalization works in real life to attract lifetime customers. We hope our three personas can better demonstrate this smart approach :
Whereware's Faces of Online Personalization
Meet Wanda, a B2B e-commerce customer restocking her store shelves; Wendy, a  B2C e-commerce customer shopping for her family, and Wayne, a Services company customer hiring a receptionist. We hope our pals can help you understand how you can use personalization to consistently target, reach, and delight your customers at every touch point.

See Personalization in action.

Web tip – Content marketing from all angles

See Woodstock Chimes’
multi-channel marketing campaign
and national PR effort.

Woodstock Chimes, designer and distributor of windchimes, musical instruments, and toys, undertook a multi-channel marketing campaign and a national PR effort to raise awareness for autism.

From videos to a social media blitz to national news outreach, Woodstock Chimes did not quit until Chimes for Autism was picked up by popular media sites Huffington Post and Upworthy.

Find out how Woodstock Chimes marketed their Chimes for Autism campaign in an entirely new, dynamic way.

Web tip – 4 easy website updates to attract holiday shoppers

The hectic holiday shopping season is here! If you haven’t optimized your website for holiday shoppers, don’t fret, there’s still time! Procrastinators rejoice – follow our simple last minute tips to update your website for holiday shoppers.

Maximize your homepage – Update your hero image to show off top-selling products, special holiday sales, or gift guides. Place sales and special offers center stage. Grab browsers attention right away and compel them to shop.

Mud Pie Cyber Week Website Example
Create urgency – Tell visitors exactly how many days are left to ship their gifts in time for the holidays.

Crate + Barrel holiday website example
Land of Nod Holiday example
Make holiday items easy to find – Change up site navigation to include your best-selling gifts and holiday decorations. Similarly, call out gift guides in your navigation. Busy shoppers will appreciate how easily they can find “Gifts for Her” or “Gifts $25 + under” to cross everyone off their shopping list.

West Elm Holiday Deals
Make it mobile-friendly – Banana Republic Mobile WebsiteCyber Monday mobile traffic accounted for 41.2% of all online traffic, up 30.1% over 2013. Mobile sales were also strong, reaching 22% of total Cyber Monday online sales, an increase of 27.6% year-over-year.

This trend will continue, so make sure your site is ready to handle mobile shoppers! If you don’t have time to build a responsive site, simplify the site you have – remove clutter (tons of graphics + calls-to-action, text-heavy content), use larger fonts, place critical information above the fold, and utilize big buttons that are easy to press with clumsy fingers.

Takeaways

Optimize your website for the busy holiday shopping season – it pays off! By making it easy for customers to find gifts for everyone on their list, you’ll increase sales and boost their loyalty towards your brand. Happy shoppers are more likely to return to your site for their gift giving needs all year round.

Web tip: sweeten the deal to grow your email list

Your company’s email list is gold. Email converts at a higher rate than other marketing tactics and keeps your brand top of mind with customers and leads. In fact, according to an infograph by QuickSprout, email converts at almost 2x the rate of search and 8x the rate of social, so when you’re deciding where to focus marketing energy, email is a clear winner.

Building and maintaining an effective email list isn’t for the faint of heart – email lists grow stale fast unless they’re nurtured with new faces and scrubbed clean of outdated addresses. Today, we’ll show you how our client Transpac Imports, Inc. leveraged existing sales to breath fresh air into their email list.

Incentivize  email sign ups

Incentivizing web visitors to take action – like signing up for your email list – is proven to increase conversion. Both tangible incentives, like a coupon or a free gift, or a value exchange, like awesome research and other digital resources, helps grow your list. Even well-known brands like Ann Taylor, Dockers, and New York & Company sweeten the deal to motivate email signups.

Capture emails. Grow your email list

Recycle promotions to motivate email sign ups 

We know it isn’t always feasible to dedicate a promotion to email signups. With the holidays right around the corner, you must be offering a sale or discount on something, right? Follow Transpac’s lead and repurpose your existing promotion to motivate website visitors to sign up for your email list.

Continue reading Web tip: sweeten the deal to grow your email list