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There Are No Short Cuts To An Effective Google Maps Listing

Google My Business can be a very powerful tool for any business with a focus on their local area. If you can achieve a first page ranking for any of your chosen terms on Google Maps, it is all but guaranteed that prospective customers will view your business before almost any other.

Please see below for a recent example:

2016-05-24_1601

However it is very important to ensure that your listing is created correctly without cutting any corners.

A Common Mistake

Through the ‘Google My Business’ dashboard, users have the ability to set their radius of service around their physical address. This option is designed to allow customers to see how far a business is prepared to travel in order to visit a customer.

However, some business owners choose to be a little too greedy and instead of setting a realistic and accurate radius, set their radius to its maximum in the hope of ranking across several locations. The reality of the situation is that this will not work and you will instead find that you are only likely to rank around the actual, physical location of your business.

Setting A Realistic Radius

Rather than trying to trick Google into giving you rankings across a broader area than you should be eligible for, you should instead use a radius setting which realistically and accurately highlights the catchment area of your business. If your business legitimately covers a huge service area, that is fine, however you should not expect to receive any cross-location ranking boost just because of it.

The reality is that if you want to rank across several locations, you need a physical site in each major city that’s actually utilised and occupied by your team.

Please Note – There is a ‘black hat’ practice which involves purchasing virtual addresses purely for the location pin. This is something that should not be attempted as it goes directly against Google’s quality guidelines.

Further Information

Footprint specialise in creating individually tailored web marketing solutions designed to help take your business to another level. If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.

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By | June 8th, 2016|Google Maps|Comments Off on There Are No Short Cuts To An Effective Google Maps Listing

5 Facts To Prove the Importance of Mobile Marketing

The balance of power has been on the move for many years and in 2015, Google confirmed the following:

It’s Official: Google Says More Searches Now On Mobile Than On Desktop

Whilst this change has been anticipated for a number of years, confirmation from Google regarding a change in the browsing habits of internet users is huge news for businesses.

Google stated that “more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan.”

Whilst that statement does not officially include the UK, it is a fairly safe assumption that we will be included within this list.

For more on this story, please click here.

What Does This Mean For My Business?

With more and more customers using their mobile devices (either phones or tablets) to browse for products and services, taking the required steps to 5 Facts To Improve The Importance of Internet Marketingensure that visitors to your website receive the optimum experience has never been more important.

Whilst a ‘non-mobile optimised’ website will still retain its desktop search rankings, there is every chance that it will not rank well on mobile search rankings. Although a few years ago, this would not have been an issue, with the shift in balance in browsing power, mobile marketing has become essential for all businesses, especially for small and mid-sized businesses.

For more on this story, please click here.

Still Have Doubts?

If you still have doubts regarding the popularity of mobile Vs desktop searching, the following facts may help to change your mind.

1. Accessing The Internet Has Never Been Easier

80% of all online adults now own a Smartphone & 47% own a Tablet.

Source = GlobalWebIndex’s 2015 Q3 report on trends for smartphones, tablets, smart TVs and wearables.

2. Mobile Internet Usage Is More Popular Than Ever

More Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan.

Source = Google Official Blog

3. Mobile Usage Is Ideally Suited To Searching For Local Businesses

38% of mobile users search at least one time per month for a local business.

Source = BrightLocal Mobile Consumer Survey 2015

4. Mobile Internet Users Are Proactive Shoppers

70% of mobile searches lead to an online action within an hour (versus 1 month for 70% of PC users).

Source = Mobile Marketing Assoc. Mobile Marketing Forum 2010

5. Mobile Searches Also Lead To More ‘In-Shop’ Purchases

78% of Local Mobile searches result in offline purchases.

Source = ComScore, Neustar Localeze, 15 Miles, Local search study 2013

Further Information

Footprint specialise in creating bespoke websites, designed to help take your business to another level. If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.

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By | June 1st, 2016|Uncategorized|Comments Off on 5 Facts To Prove the Importance of Mobile Marketing

Why Your Small Business MUST Be Listed on Google Maps

Whilst big businesses may be able to call on a very large marketing budget, the great news for smaller businesses is that Google maps listings offer the perfect method of promoting your business in your local area and unlike Google Adwords, the service is free to use.

Understanding How It Works

Google-Maps

To access Google Maps, please visit the following link – https://www.google.co.uk/maps

Google Places (often referred to as Google + Business now) is a service which allows you to create a dedicated listing which will be displayed on Google Maps.

Business owners, who are listed with Google, can use their Google Places account to manage the information that they would like to display regarding their business.

Please Note – Considering the fact that Google usually blends the Google Places’ page and Maps along with the organic results for location specific searches, listing yourself in Google Places can be an excellent way to create brand awareness.

3 Step Guide To Getting Listed

Getting your business listed on Google Places simply could not be easier and by following our 3 step guide you can be live in just a few weeks.

  • Step 1 – The first step is register with Google and then add all of the relevant business information including your business address, Tel. No., E-Mail address, opening hours, images etc.
  • Step 2 – Once you have completed your listing, the next step is to verify your account. This is done via a postcard which will be sent to your business address (it normally arrives in 2 to 3 weeks).
  • Step 3 – Once the verification postcard arrives, you can take the final step, simply log in to your account, add the code and your listing will go live within a few hours.

Perhaps one of the best parts of creating this account is the fact that Google do not charge you to use it!

The Importance For Small Businesses

Your business listing on Google Maps offers a highly effective method of making the important details about your business visible and searchable on the internet. You don’t even need to have a website in order to make the most of it. If you are a small business owner, you really cannot afford to overlook this excellent form of free advertising.

How To Make The Most of Your Listing

Now we have explained how the listings can be set-up, we want to help you make the most of your listing once it goes live.

  • Choose Your Categories Wisely – Google provides a choice of categories to which you can add your listing and you are not limited to one. Simply type the first few letters of your services into the category box and select the most appropriate results which are provided.
  • Add Images– You can make your listing more attractive by adding a number of photos/images to your account. You can add a logo and background image to your homepage and up to 10 images in the listing itself.
  • More Than One Location? – If your business is based in more than one place (perhaps you have more than one branch?), make sure that each branch has a separate Google Places page with the location’s address and phone number.
  • Encourage Reviews– We cannot over emphasize the importance of this tip – ask your customers to review and rate on your listing. Online reviews play a crucial role in helping to separate competing businesses and the chances are, the more positive reviews on your account, the higher your listing may rank and the more likely undecided customers may be to opt for your products and services.

If you have any further questions about the importance of Google Maps listings for small businesses and how they can be used to help you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on Tel. No. 01883 372488.

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By | May 23rd, 2016|Google Maps|Comments Off on Why Your Small Business MUST Be Listed on Google Maps

Do Your Onsite Images Carry Any SEO Juice?

Did you know that the use of images and the addition of the correct tags can play a crucial role in achieving excellent search engine results? Search engines such as Google are trying to incorporate more images into their results and for e-commerce websites in particular, getting rankings on Google images can offer a great way of drawing visitors to your website.

How To Optimise Your Images?

By simply following a few basic guidelines, you will be able to take the required steps towards ensuring your images work for you. Following a few Do Your Onsite Images Carry Any SEO Juice?simple guidelines can help ensure your images are working hard for your SEO.

1) Choose The Right Image: Finding the most appropriate image is the most important part. A good image which attracts attention and describes itself can really do the job for you. Steer clear of irrelevant images – this can have the opposite effect.

2) Utilise The Alt Tags: Alt tags displays the text in-case the image is not able to load in the browser helping users to know the details of the image. It not only helps the users but also acts as a base for search engines in identifying what the image contains. The Alt tag must be direct and succinct – avoid lengthy descriptions and keyword stuffing.

3) Re-Name Your Images: Using a file name that is relevant but is none generic means you will ensure the right sort of traffic are coming across your content. If your file name is too generic, you may end up with non-relevant visitors to your site – potentially skewing your site stats. The above example has been named “Houses of Parliament at Night” – relevant, but not too generic a title.

4) Re-Size Your Images (Where Necessary): Google considers the page loading time as one of the important ranking factors, which will beDo Your Onsite Images Carry Any SEO Juice? dictated by the size of the page (image file size, video size, etc). Optimizing images in terms of size can really improve your site performance. File size depends on the resolution of the image, the higher the resolution the bigger the file size. So you need to maintain a balance between the size and the quality. There are different image types supported (JPEG, PNG, GIF) on the web, and choosing the best will depend on your requirement. Try and choose a image which is of good quality and lowest file size. Very high resolution images will be huge and, as such, should be avoided.

Why Is It Important To Do This?

  1. Search engines can detect an image but not what the image is. This makes it difficult for them to sort out images based on user query.
  2. Images have now been added to the main page search results in Google resulting in a potential for more traffic.
  3. Images can break up text blocks are are better at enticing people into your site.
  4. Images can also act as link bait if you allow image sharing in exchange of a link.
  5. Image sharing is more prolific among users with sites like Pinterest getting more popular.

Further Information

Footprint specialise in creating bespoke websites, designed to help take your business to another level. If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.

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By | May 16th, 2016|Images, SEO|Comments Off on Do Your Onsite Images Carry Any SEO Juice?

Shenise’s Wing Walking – 9th July!!

Saturday the 9th July 2016 is a momentous day for the Footprint family and Shenise in particular! On this day, Shenise takes to the skies to perform a ‘wing walk’ in an effort to raise money for a truly excellent cause.

To make a donation, please visit the following link to submit your details – https://www.justgiving.com/shenisewingwalking

For a look into why Shenise has decided to undertake this amazing feat, check out below for a little insight.

What Is The Back Story?

“I decided that I wanted to do something different this year so in a mad moment with friends I suggested Wing Walking (think wine was involved). Other than being shocked my friends said what a great idea. “But just one thing you don’t like heights Shenise” – oh yeah I forgot about that, but you know what it’s just a fear I can do this and overcome a fear I have had forever.”

“It’s for such a great cause and charity Matthew’s Friends. The staff & volunteers work so hard. Luckily I will be fitted with 4 different camera’s & a Go Pro so if I pass out then I’ll be able to watch the footage back. So I would really appreciate your donation for this great charity.”

Who Are Matthew’s Friends?

Matthew’s Friends provide information and support for children and adults using Ketogenic Dietary Therapies for epilepsy, Glut1, Brain Cancer and other neurological disorders.

The video below highlights some of the outstanding work that Matthew’s Friends have completed during the past 10 years

Please Dig Deep!!

Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs for the charity.

To make a donation, please visit the following link to submit your details – https://www.justgiving.com/shenisewingwalking – Don’t forget to dig deep!!

Offering a Helping Hand (From The Ground!!)

To help support Shenise, Footprint Web Design are very proud to donate the £500 costs which must be covered to allow the wing walk to take place.

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By | May 10th, 2016|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Shenise’s Wing Walking – 9th July!!
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