3RCertified is an innovative new program designed to provide credible public recognition to businesses and institutions that have made a meaningful commitment to achieving the following environmental goals.
Empire XI Blog
Adobe Systems halted development of its Flash Player for mobile browsers, surrendering to Apple Inc.n a war over Web standards as the company surprised investors with a restructuring plan.
The move is likely to improve the browsing experiences of tens of millions of iPhone and iPad users, who have trouble accessing sites built with Flash.
That is because Adobe’s decision means Web developers who currently use Flash tools to produce Web content will likely move over to the newer HTML5 technology, which Adobe embraced Wednesday.
1. Choose an effective domain name
Domains are the first place a search engine looks when beginning the indexing and ranking process.
Use a domain with short keywords that relate to your business,
Include relevant, researched keywords in your name will help rank your site above your competitors’.
2. Optimize your page titles
Each web page should have unique page titles, they are one of the first and places search engines reach when their indexing tools scan your site.
The best page titles are 67 characters or less, including blank spaces. Most search engines will not index anything beyond that, so including keywords within the first 67 characters is important.
3. Organize and prioritize your content
- Familiarize yourself with the different header tags that can be applied to your site content. There are 6 header tags in total.
- Header 1 (<h1>) is best used once per page, and is usually interpreted by search engines as what the page is about, allowing easier sorting.
- Each header after 1, down to 6, can be used to sort your remaining content, helping search engines organize all of it and display it in search results.
- Always try to include page specific keywords in your headers, especially in the H1 header.
4. Treat your images right
Use keywords in the file name of your image to help improve keyword density on your pages.
Give images alternate text, which can be read by text-based browsers, emails, etc. Images with alternate text are considered more user-friendly than images without.
Images are a great place to include page-relevant keywords that may otherwise not get included in your content.
Optimize each image. Smaller file sizes will help your page load faster, making it easier for people to access quickly. Slower loading pages result in a lower placement in search results.
5. Create user-friendly links
Thought out links that tell people what they’re being taken to, rather than generic ‘click here’ links are always better. The text used for a link is known as anchor text.
Try to include keywords related to the page you’re sending people to in your text link.
Include link title attributes on every text link on your site. Link title text functions much like alternate text on images, and can contribute to better search results.
6. Create SEO-friendly text based navigation
- If using an image based main menu make sure to include a secondary text-based navigation menu somewhere on the site, in the footer for example.
- Text based links are beneficial because they load faster than images, their anchor text can be read by search engines and their link title text can contribute to better search results.
7. Write effective content, formatted with the correct styling and keyword placement
Use keywords and phrases in your content. Using a keyword density on a page between 3-5% is considered the optimum percentage, anything higher may be considered search spam, resulting in lower rankings.
Make regular updates. Introduce relevant content regularly via a press release or blog. Stagnant content will eventually stopped being indexed regularly, telling search engines that the site is not current, resulting in lower results.
8. Consider working with professional photographers and writers
When it comes to designing your site and preparing its content, why not work with a professional? Relying on an expert team of designers, writers and photographers will make sure that your site is as effective at reaching your target audience as possible.
Relying on people that create web sites every day means you’re getting a level of quality and polish you may not accomplish on your own.
9. Publish new content on a regular basis and submit it to appropriate places on the web
Publish news articles, press releases, etc. about your business and the services you offer to online article directories, blogs, forums and other reputable places on the web.
Always include a link back to your website in any published materials, giving readers the option to learn more about your business.
10. Create a site map and submit it to search engines to get more pages indexed faster
Submitting a site map of your website to engines like Google means the pages on your site will be scanned, sorted and indexed much quicker than if you just waited for them to come to you.
There are many additional SEO tips that can help you achieve an effective edge over your competition. SEO is never a one-time process that can be done and then ignored for the rest of the life of your site, but requires constant monitoring and adjustment.
While taking into consideration any one of these tips will you improve your search results, combining all of them, along with many others, will provide the best results.
In the end, SEO is about creating a memorable user experience, giving using quick access to relevant, informative and properly organized content that will keep them coming back to you for new information, and not to your competitors.
So… just launched that brand new shiny website? Bet you’re excited. It looks great, functions perfectly, the visuals are just right and everything is just a click away. Right?
What about the content? Many times people will spend as little time as possible working on their web content. How will you be able to convince users and potential customers to purchase your product or service, when you’re not telling them anything about it? Worse yet, how does it look on screen?
With the introduction of content management systems, people are now able to manage their content on their own, and not rely on their web development company to handle updates for them. The question is, how do you make your content stand out? Here are some tips to improve the content on your site and help your visitors find exactly what they’re looking for.
Many users don’t read entire pages of content, they simply don’t have the time. You’re busy right? So are they. Many people will just scan a site, taking a few moments to read through anything that stands out on the page.
- To guide a reader through your site, keep your content to a minumum, Less is always more on the web.
- Use titles, headings and sub headings to separate blocks of content from each other.
- Bold your keywords and make sure to link any appropriate text to other parts of the site, where a user will be able to learn more about a specific product or service they’re interested in.
- Use lists to simply display key features or benefits
It’s amazing how many of our clients publish content with spelling and other grammatical errors. Always use a spell checker and read through your content several times before publishing it to the web. Poorly written or misspelled content reflects poorly on your site and your business.
Ask other people what they think
Sometimes when you’ve worked with content for long enough, you get a little too familiar with it, and can lose track of keeping it simple and concise. The solution is easy, run it by other people for some constructive criticism. They may very well catch something you’ve missed, or figure out how to shave off a few extra words while maintaining the overall focus.
On a recent trip to Europe I managed to take a few photos (just a few). Over the next few weeks I’ll be sure to release them on the blog for your viewing pleasure.
Is your website saying everything it should? Your website’s purpose is to attract, inform and inspire visitors and customers to keep coming back. Many times, too much attention is placed on visual design and functionality, that the actual content of a site is often overlooked. In the end, positioning your company as the right choice for your customers all comes down to what you say, and how clearly you say it. Is your site content achieving all it can? There are four key ways to tell.
Is it short and concise?
Studies show that cutting the content of a website in half increases readability and reader interest levels by about 60% - being concise pays off! Since most web readers scan websites (79% of readers in fact) vs reading the complete page (just 16% of readers) it’s vital that information be presented in a clear, direct manner, and any information not vital to the reader be removed. So, how do you tell if your web page copy needs a trim? If the majority of your pages will require scrolling to accommodate text, it’s time to start the editing process.
Is it organized?
Content organization is another factor that can hinder or help a reader’s ability to understand your message. Ensure readers find the information they need by organizing your web content using headings and sub-headings, bullet points, highlighted key words. Use short paragraphs containing only one theme or idea to keep content easy to digest and scan over. Try the inverted pyramid writing style – start each page or section with the conclusion to tell readers upfront what the page is about, then focus on how to go about achieving those end results.
Is it up to date?
The key difference between the internet and almost every other form of communication method is the speed at which it changes. Web visitors expect information to be relevant to the moment, and can easily find more up-to-date information from one of your competitors, if your own content is outdated. Your web content should reflect current facts about your services and products, your industry and your business - no prospect will come to you with their business based on outdated pricing, service offerings. If a potential customer dismisses you as an option based on your outdated website content, you will have lost business that could otherwise have been yours.
Is it perfect?
Visitors can find hundreds of alternatives to your business – in an instant. If your website appears outdated, has poor spelling and grammar or links that don’t work properly, it communicates sloppiness and a lack of professionalism. There’s no excuse for a website that doesn’t meet acceptable communication standards. Proof read, spell check, and edit - then do it again to make sure each web page reflects your company’s unique expertise in your industry.
Your website is a 24-hour business card, always available with the ability to attract or repel prospective customers at any time of day, anywhere in the world. Not only does it need an attractive design, intuitive navigation and functionality, web readers need the right content to makes decision-making easier. Review your website, then give us a call to make the most of your online business investment!
Your website’s home page is more often than not the very first place a user (and potential customer) will land, via a search result or referral or from any other method. It’s imperative that you fill the first few seconds of that user’s visit with a relevant message, or you’ll very likely have lost them as a potential consumer of your product or service.
Your home page can be used to effectively tell a visitor what you do, what service or product you provide, and most importantly, what your business can offer someone that nobody else can. Typically this can be done with powerful visuals and a short, compact message or tagline about the key benefits of choosing your business over another.
This special message needs to be featured as the most prominent and dominating piece of information on your home page, and most definitely needs to be placed above the fold (the area of a web page that can be viewed without scrolling, most commonly referring to a size of the screen usually no greater than 578 pixels high – based on the use of a 19” monitor. With the increase in monitor resolution this number is slowly getting larger).
Have a current special offer for a product? Display it! Use a slideshow or web sized advertisement to draw attention to your feature, and include a link to learn more about that offer where applicable. Guiding the user from your home page to the page they’re looking for with ease is what the web is all about, and it should be the goal of any business with a website.
The power of your home page doesn’t end there however. Below your feature there is prime real estate for additional services and messages. The area below your key message can be used for many purposes, from displaying a list of recent news, press releases or blog posts, to the inclusion of other featured services or products from your company that may not be as important as your main feature, but can still be used to direct web traffic to other parts of your website. Additional uses include testimonials, featuring service case studies, videos and more! The possibilities are truly endless.
To summarize, a home page has become more than a space for the simple ‘Welcome to my website’ message that is still so common. Your home page is very often the most important part of your site, and when treated as such, your business will reap the benefits and you’ll see web traffic and a better return on your online investment.
It’s been a while since we took some time for ourselves to spend on updating our look and adding a ton of new work for you to see.
We hope you like the new site, we’ve added a lot of cool new stuff, including this blog! We’re also on Facebook and Twitter, so feel free to join us and keep up to date on new projects, articles, web and design tips and more!