The Internet is a place that’s always changing and evolving. As a business owner, you want to keep your website up to date. Not only is this important for potential customers’ perception of your business, but also to help with marketing. For example, as more searches have shifted to mobile devices, Google has adjusted their algorithm to reward sites that load quickly and work properly on those devices. Businesses that haven’t kept their sites up to date are missing out on a very important marketing channel.
Since the above issue is just one example of why web design trends matter a lot, we want to highlight five of the most notable for 2017:
There was a time when many design trends revolved around utilizing lots of flashy elements to make sites highly interactive. While it’s still important to have an engaging design, huge platforms like Facebook have set people’s expectations with modern but understated design. Since content is what people truly care about on social media, as well as when they visit individual websites, it’s important for design to play a supporting role that makes it easy for content to be consumed on devices of all sizes.
In the past, it was often quite challenging to support anything other than very basic typography across different devices and operating systems. But thanks to advancements in technologies like CSS and web fonts, it’s now possible to create a consistent experience with custom fonts. By emphasizing typography, a business can establish strong brand recognition online.
Plenty of Color
As you may have noticed from what we’ve covered so far, a lot of the current trends in web design are driven by using fewer elements but making the most of every one that is used. This can be seen in how color is being used. Instead of the muted palettes that became quite common several years ago, many current designs are using strategic pops of color to grab people’s attention and strengthen brand recognition.
Focus on Conversions
At Web Strategy Plus, we’ve always approached web design and development from the perspective of accomplishing business goals. More people are starting to understand the importance of using design as a conversion tool, which we’re very happy to see.
Given all the content that bombards people whenever they pull out their phone or open their laptop, it’s easy for marketing messages to get lost in the noise. One way that businesses are trying to combat this is using design as a way to weave compelling narratives throughout entire websites.
If going over the trends above reminded you that your business website is in need of an update, be sure to take a look at how we can help you execute a successful website redesign.
This session will be presented by Michelle Hummel who was recently nominated for the Women Owned Business of the Year!
Michelle is a passionate Internet Marketer with 15+ years of successful online marketing experience. Recently nominated for Woman Owned Business of the Year. She holds a valuable Internet Marketing Degree and travels Nationwide providing social media keynotes and in-depth training. CEO and founder of Web Strategy Plus a full service digital marketing agency assisting clients with branding initiatives Nationwide. Founder of Web Media University offering virtual and in-person social media training to corporations. Also a current contributing editor to The Social Media Monthly Magazine. A few of her specialties are Social Media Marketing, Web Design/Development, Content Creation, Brand Development and Public Speaking. She also specializes in helping Franchisors and Franchisees develop an integrated web marketing program to drive leads. She’s available for interviews via email, telephone, Skype video, news segments on location and more. Just let her know how she can help!
When people go online, there’s a good chance they’re doing it from a mobile device. Whether it’s on their phone while they’re out or using a tablet from the comfort of their couch, these devices are changing the way people of all ages interact with online content. What’s interesting about this behavior is it may not always be mirrored by the people creating the content that’s so often consumed on mobile devices.
Many content creators prefer to use laptops or even dual monitors as they create content that will be published online. While there’s nothing wrong with that type of workflow, it is important for creators and businesses to remember that the content they publish may be accessed on small screens with slower mobile connections.
To ensure that the hard work put into producing content doesn’t go to waste because someone wants to look at it on a smaller screen, here are the top content marketing strategies I’ve found for engaging mobile readers:
Direct mail copywriters use to spend a significant percentage of their time honing the headlines of their letters. This is just as important with mobile devices. Given that people are always a single tap away from games and other entertainment, taking time to perfect the headlines of your content is crucial for anyone to notice and care about it.
Start with a Bang
Once someone is drawn to a piece of content by the headline, you want to keep the momentum going. The best way to do that is by diving right into at least some of the meat of what you’re writing about. Even if it’s just a teaser, this will keep people moving deeper into your content.
Keep Paragraphs Short
No one wants to deal with reading a wall of text on a phone or tablet screen. You can make the reading experience a pleasant one by keeping paragraphs short and using subheadings throughout the body of your content.
Wrap It Up
Even if people are interested in a piece of content, they may still quickly scan through to the bottom. The good news is you can still connect with those types of readers by wrapping up what you’ve talked about at the end and including a relevant call to action.
Use Media Strategically
Images can be a great way to augment content and even make it more likely that people will share. The same can be true for embedding a video. Just be sure that these things are done in a way that will keep the content mobile friendly. With images, use a program to compress the size prior to embedding. And check a video once it’s embedded to ensure it’s not dramatically slowing down how long a post takes to load on a mobile connection or causing a weird sizing issue.
If you would like professional guidance for your content marketing, I’m here to help. Learn more about Web Strategy Plus and the content marketing services we offer.
When businesses start using social media, they usually reach a point where they’re interested in getting even more out of these channels. When that point is reached, one option that may come up is utilizing a social media community manager. Since this type of role is still something that’s fairly new, many businesses have questions about what exactly it means.
5 Things That a Great Social Media Community Manager Does
Another reason that it can be a little challenging to figure out what someone in this role does is they generally do quite a bit. The first task on the list of a social media community manager is creating content. While you may already have writers, designers or other individuals that help you produce content, it’s important to remember that every social platform is different. What a community manager can do is take existing pieces of content and properly optimize them to the unique nature of each platform.
The next thing a community manager for social media does is market analysis. Because individuals filling this type of role are interacting with prospects on a daily basis, they’re able to spot trends that can help a business improve their online marketing efforts. Additionally, a community manager can take the analytics collected for different social platforms and translate them into actionable information.
The third thing that a great social media manager will do is stay on top of the news. This includes news surrounding the industry a business is in, along with broader news that’s relevant to the business. There are a few reasons why this type of activity is important. Not only does it provide content and things for a manager to engage with social users about, but it can also expose opportunities where it makes sense for a business to create their own content around a specific event.
Fourth on the list is providing customer service. When a business is on social media, they’re going to interact with both prospects and existing customers. As social media becomes a primary form of communication for more people, providing customer service through these platforms is going from something that’s helpful to a mandatory benchmark. Having an active community manager can help a business stay on top of any customer service issues that come up via social.
Last but certainly not least, a social manager facilitates opportunities. From collaborating with influencers to highlighting especially passionate customers on social media, having someone consistently focused on this type of social interaction can create a lot of interesting opportunities.
If you’re interested in reaping all the benefits that the right social media community manager can offer but don’t want to hire a full-time employee for this role, learn more about the solution Web Strategy Plus can provide.
If you’ve spent any amount of time reading about social media marketing, you’ve probably come across the phrase “content is king.” While we fully agree with that statement, it’s important to understand that there is a big caveat. Far too many businesses are under the assumption that if they create a great piece of content and then put it out into the world, it will perform great. Continue reading
Blogging is a critical component of any successful web strategy. With an engaging blog, your business can attract new prospects and reach existing consumers with content that will improve brand value and awareness. Learn how to get more readers to your Blog: Continue reading
Do you know who your target audience is? Now ask yourself, why would they care about what you have to say? Learn how to build a successful Content Strategy: Continue reading
How do you keep your audience engaged on a regular basis? By providing quality and fresh blog content. Learn how to keep your audience engaged with your Blog Content: Continue reading
Establishing your brand voice and style starts by clarifying who you are, who you want to be, and what you want to accomplish. How do you think people perceive your brand? Learn how to define your brand voice and style: Continue reading
Content strategy covers the entire life cycle of content. Learn how to develop a better Content Strategy for your Blog: Continue reading