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Yearly Archives: 2014

/2014

WordPress 101: An Intro to Your Dashboard

You’ve got shiny new WordPress site, but how do you use it?

With such a huge variety of themes, visual options and add-ons, it’s no surprise that WordPress is nowWP Logo the most popular platform for building blogs and websites. It’s stylish, straightforward and simple to use. Over the next few blogs, we’re going to show you just how easy using WordPress really is. From finding your way around your dashboard, to editing images – and everything in between – we can help you take charge of editing and updating your own site.

Welcome to your Dashboard

When you log in to your WordPress account, you’ll be greeted by a screen similar to the below:

Wordpress 1

This is your dashboard!

From here, you can improve, update, edit and view everything to do with your website. You can even change the layout of your dashboard, to make things you use frequently easier to find and access.

Wordpress 2

 

In the top right of the screen, you’ll see “Howdy, (username)” – pretty useful to make sure you’re logged into the right site, with the right account. Just below this, you’ll see a link marked “Screen Options” (highlighted by the red arrow). This will allow you to Wordpress 3amend which boxes appear in your dashboard. By checking, or unchecking any of the boxes, you’ll be able to amend those that appear on the main screen of your dashboard – leaving room for those you find most useful.

You can also change the order of the boxes that appear in your dashboard, by dragging and dropping them. If there’s something you use all the time, and need it at the top, just hold your cursor on the title bar, click, hold and move it to where you want it.

To the left of your screen, you’ll see a list menu. This is your navigation menu. From here, you can do everything. Writing blogs, moderate comments, adding new webpages, etc. All things we’ll go into over the next few blogs. At the bottom of this list, you’ll see an option titled “Collapse Menu”. Clicking this will reduce your navigation menu down, allowing your main page to take up more room on your screen (particularly useful if you’re editing images). To reinstate it, simply click the right-pointing arrow.

In the next blog, we’ll cover creating posts & pages, as well as adding images to your image library. If there are any things you have queries on, or would like to know more about, please contact us and we’ll put that in the blog as well.

Intro to your blog, from WordPress.tv:

Further Information

Footprint Web Design have been at the forefront of web design and development for nearly 20 years. If you are looking for a website that truly represents your business, or advice on how to make your site stand out, then contact us today on 01883 372 488, or via email at info@footprint.co.uk.

 

By | February 27th, 2014|Bespoke website design, Wordpress, Wordpress Websites|Comments Off on WordPress 101: An Intro to Your Dashboard

Facebook to take on Google?

Facebook’s 10-year plan involves taking on the world’s largest (and most successful) search engine.

Clash of the titans, or a one-horse race?

Clash of the titans, or a one-horse race?

You heard correctly. In Facebook‘s Q4 2013 Earnings Conference Call (the transcript of which can be read here), Mark Zuckerberg outlined their plans to expand Facebook’s remit to include a comprehensive search function, one that would rival Google – the search engine that’s practically singlehandedly ruling the internet.

In his speech, he outlined 3 key areas that, he believes, would drive the success of this venture. These being:

  • Facebook has a bigger “index” of data on hand than any other search engine.
  • Facebook’s artificial intelligence unit is working to make that data available through Graph Search, Facebook’s search engine.
  • The final product will be rolled out on mobile devices so that people can ask Facebook for advice and solve their problems using voice recognition on their phones.

He’s anticipated that the final product will be rolled out over the next decade.

The idea was revealed after Zuckerberg was asked about Facebook’s Graph Search function (which hasn’t been particularly well-received, mostly due to the fact it’s not particularly easy to use).

His actual response was:

“So the first release [of Graph Search] indexed more than a trillion connections between all the people and interests and events and groups and things that everyone was connected to. The second release that we did recently was around all the updates. So there are more than a trillion status updates and unstructured text posts and photos and pieces of content that people have shared over the past 10 years, and indexing that was a really big deal, because as the number of people on the team who have worked on web search engines in the past have told me, a trillion pieces of content is more than the index in any web search engine.”

As you can see, a lot of it is open to interpretation – is Zuckerberg purposefully trash-talking Google’s “key-word only” results; what is he actually including when he refers to the “index” (if he’s including actual web pages, then Google might feel that THEY have the larger index)?

It’s a huge vision. Although, judging by Facebook’s stratospheric success in the past and the fact they are funding the introduction of reliable internet connections in the developing world, it’s pretty in line with how the Facebook team plan things. Think big.

But, how successful will it be, for Facebook to take on Google? There’s no doubt Google will have their own expansion plans, in order to retain their place at the top of the search engine charts. But, while they further mine the realms of ranking and internet “quality control”, will that leave a gap in the market for a more intuitive and holistic search function? Only time will tell.

Watch this space!

 

Further Information

Footprint Web Design have been at the forefront of web design and SEO for 18 years. Contact us for advice on how to get your business noticed online – we have packages to suit all business sizes and budgets.

 

By | February 13th, 2014|Social Media|Comments Off on Facebook to take on Google?

Hot SEO Predictions for 2014!

What can you do to stay ahead of the pack in 2014?

Ok, so January is over with. The post-festive glow has well and truly worn off, and it’s time to put into place all those big ideas you’ve been having over the last few weeks. seo

When it comes to SEO, what can you do to make sure you stay ahead of the curve?

Here’s a list of some of the most popular predictions for 2014.

Google will be announcing Google Hummingbird. This most recent Google update will force marketers to write in a more conversational style. Flooding web copy with forced in keywords, in order to rise to the top of the rankings, has not worked for a while now, but Google Hummingbird is going to make sure it stays dead and buried. A more conversational style in blogs & web copy, that is much more tailored towards your reader, is going to be encouraged and rewarded. Those still trying to shoehorn unwieldy key words in, as if they were writing for a robot, will find themselves slapped with a penalty pretty quickly. This also applies to buying links and those who steal content – so be warned!

Increased Mobile Marketing. MCommerce is is outstripping eCommerce by 200% at the moment, and 63 percent of consumers say they will shop on their phone more frequently in the next few years. By the tail-end of 2013, sales made on mobile phones and tablets accounted for $4.7 billion. How can your website be tailored for the mobile market?

Location-based content marketing. Targeting consumers through their GPS-enabled smartphones is expected to become mainstream by the end of 2014. This content marketing strategy allows businesses to identify each shopper’s preferences and location. When a consumer is near the store, the system simply sends them a deal based on the stored demographic information.

Bite-sized updates. Social Media, from Twitter’s 140-character limit, to Vine’s 6-second video limit, is recognising our desire for short, sharp snippets of information. Those who are able to concentrate their message into manageable chunks will find their content much more popular. That doesn’t mean, however, that you can neglect your longer content – there’ll always be someone waiting out there to fill your place if you let your content slip.

 

Interact with your followers. Most businesses know now that, if they’re not interacting with their customers on Social Media, they’re going to lose popularity pretty quickly. People today aren’t shy about sharing reviews, both good and bad. If you ignore either type of post, your brand is going to come across as uncaring or inattentive, neither of which will build your reputation.

Guest blogging is on the way out. Google’s recent crusade against poor-quality content means it’s on the lookout for serial spammers. Guest bloggers who use email sites to publish their content, or flog the same content over and over again, will seriously damage a site’s SEO rank.

Further Information

If you need help creating content, finding your Social Media voice, or creating a SEO strategy, then Footprint Web Design can help. We’ve been at the forefront of SEO for years, and are well-equipped at tailoring our SEO options to businesses of all sizes.

Give us a call on 01883 372488, or email us at info@footprint.co.uk and see what we can do to get your business to the top.

By | February 7th, 2014|SEO, Uncategorized|Comments Off on Hot SEO Predictions for 2014!

Do Facebook And Twitter Help With Google Rankings?

Do Facebook and Twitter Help with Google rankings? If my account only has 3 followers, am I wasting my time posting at all?

The answer here is definitely “no”! Facebook Adverts

Matt Cutts, Google’s head of search spam, answers a question about Google’s ability to rank pages and profiles based on their popularity on the platform at the time.

Basically, Google are sometimes restricted from searching particular areas of Facebook & Twitter. This is due to a historical blocking by the platforms themselves. However, on some occasions, it is possible for Google to search these pages (which they call “crawling”) – in these instances, a page’s success will then contribute towards its ranking.

Hear what he has to say here:

 

What he’s saying here is there is nothing in the ranking algorithms that put any weight on how many Facebook likes or Twitter followers a page has, at the moment.

This is mostly due to the historical blocking, mentioned above. It is also due to the personal and time sensitive nature of a page’s content. Google realise that a lot of personal content is easily accessible on Facebook and Twitter and this makes them wary of highlighting it in rankings.

Due to not being able to access some of these social platforms, there is an impression given that they don’t directly contribute to a site’s ranking. However, he does recognise that these types of social media platforms are good ways of diverting traffic through to your site, and therefore upping your ranking. Good content promotes activity! It’s also worth remembering that posting links on all your social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Stumbleupon, etc.) provides legitimate backlinks that will aid your page rankings.

He concludes by postulating that, in the future, Google anticipate being able to recognise authorship in a must more proactive manner; placing a much higher import on those who write quality content and pinpointing when, and where, they are posting.

What this tells us is that, it doesn’t matter if your page doesn’t have a whole lot of followers at the moment, as it’s not being ranked on that. What you need is good content!

Further Information

Footprint Web Design have been specialising in SEO and good quality content, helping our clients climb to the top of the search engine rankings, since we started 18 years ago. We have a number of highly experienced SEO professionals who can help your business realise its full potential. We offer bespoke SEO packages to fit even the smallest company.

Call us today on 01883 372488 or email us at info@footprint.co.uk and see how we can help you.

By | January 31st, 2014|SEO|Comments Off on Do Facebook And Twitter Help With Google Rankings?

Where’s your SEO going in 2014?

So, it’s 2014. The new year. Where are you going to be taking you business this year? Have you been thinking about taking the foray into SEO?

Well you need to do more than think about it. 2014 is the time for SEO action!

Your business will be left behind if you don’t. seo

For 2014, developing  strong SEO strategy will be what transforms businesses into social media champions. Want to leave your competitors in the dirt? Start thinking about your creative content now.

Here are a few starter points to think about:

Look into LinkedIn: Linkedin is the social media platform for professionals. It can not only connect you with millions of other people, from all over the world, but it is a mine of industry gossip and ideas. You can headhunt people and keep an eye on what your business rivals are doing. But that’s not all, creating a business account, or page, can make Linkedin a hub of activity for you. Show your followers how you’re keeping abreast of changes in your industry and invite professional discussion from peers.

Google+: In popular consciousness, Google+ appeared to have been relegated to that unholy territory of “the defunct social media” – this is most certainly not the case. Google+ has made significant progress and has recently seen a 225 percent increase in users age 35-44. With the introduction of a number of supporting applications (Google Hangouts being one of them), it seems Google+ is THE place to be in 2014, if you want to give your business the edge.

Interested in Pinterest: “A picture paints a thousand words”. Ring any bells? Want to show off a new product/office make-over/creative infographic? Pinterest in the place to do it. It’s been well-documented recently, that articles with images receive an additional 94 percent more views, and photo sharing platforms like Pinterest and Instagram significantly increasing their followership. With this in mind, can you afford NOT to?

Blog, blog and blog some more: Over the last year, you may have heard the term “content is king” bandied around more than once. With Google cracking down on duplicate content, backlinks and indiscriminate guest-blogging, the idea of quality content has never been more important. Getting yourself a content strategy, focused on making sure your web-copy is of the highest quality, will stand you in good stead when the next Google updates come to town. One of the best ways to do this is with your blog. This is the place where you can ensure your voice is heard by your customers, ensuring a steady stream of new content to your website, without the dangers of 1000 identical landing pages!

Further information

For more information on how Footprint Web Design can help you, or to inquire about a quote, please contact us on 01883 372488, or email us at: info@footprint.co.uk

 

By | January 9th, 2014|SEO|Comments Off on Where’s your SEO going in 2014?
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