The Best SEO Infographics on the Web Today 

By Steve Hoag

A strong SEO strategy is an integral part of any online business. It builds traffic, leads, and sales. And who doesn't like more sales? That being said, we've scoured the web for some of the best SEO related infographics for your viewing pleasure. Zooming in is recommended. Enjoy!

best SEO infographics

 

 

H/T to upcity.com , kpi100.com , mashable.com , dimbal.com , and searchengineland.com .

 

View User Profile for Steve Hoag Steve is a recent graduate from UW, and the Marketing Coordinator at Fast Track. He primarily has experience in the tech and start-up industries. When he's not busy promoting Fast Track, he's watching Huskies or Green Bay Packers football. You can find him on Twitter @steven_hoag .
Posted by Steve Hoag Friday, February 28, 2014 8:14:00 PM Categories: B2B inbound marketing landing pages SEO web trends website

Web Designers: Three Qualities of An Ideal Candidate 

By Steve Hoag

qualities of an ideal web designer

Finding a perfect client can be difficult. Nothing is ever perfect after all. However, you can establish criteria for an ‘ideal’ candidate so you can decide on which projects to take. So how do you do that? Read on!

The client knows their budget.

It’s important to have a client who knows exactly what they can and can’t pay for. A headache among designers is getting fully paid for all their services. No one likes having to hunt down people for money. It can end up hurting your business’ cash flow if you have too high of accounts receivable.  That can lead to even larger problems down the road. That’s why it’s very important for your client to clearly establish a budget that you can stay within, and consult with them about if there are problems.

The client has a clear timeline established.

Every client should ideally know when they need to receive their deliverables by. A clear deadline needs to be established in any business endeavor so things don’t get dragged on forever. Before starting a project, be sure to ask them when they need everything done by, and plan accordingly. Minimize any possible miscommunications at the beginning so that they can’t hurt you at the end with unwanted surprises.

The client can clearly communicate what they want.

Embarking on a project with someone who doesn’t know what they want can be a huge headache. You complete one aspect of the design and they shoot back that that’s not what was wanted at all. In order to sidestep these hurdles it’s important to focus on working with clients who know what they want, and can explain it. It helps to make a questionnaire and use other consultation meetings prior to the beginning of work so you can nail down exactly what needs to be done. Being pro-active on both sides will help a lot in the long run.

View User Profile for Steve Hoag Steve is a recent graduate from UW, and the Marketing Coordinator at Fast Track. He primarily has experience in the tech and start-up industries. When he's not busy promoting Fast Track, he's watching Huskies or Green Bay Packers football. You can find him on Twitter @steven_hoag .
Posted by Steve Hoag Wednesday, February 26, 2014 10:11:00 PM Categories: B2B B2C web design website

Social Media: How to Make People Feel Valued 

By Steve Hoag

social media marketing

 

Social media to many businesses is a numbers game. The focus is always on ROI even though that can be difficult to measure. So they use easy metrics like followers, retweets, shares, clickthroughs etc. What they fail to realize is it’s called SOCIAL media for a reason. Social media was, and always will be about people. And the best way to appeal to people is to make them feel valued. This will drastically boost engagement and online presence. And it will give you a nice warm, fuzzy feeling with all the thank you’s you receive. Which is nice. So how do you make people feel valued? Read on!

Share other people’s content or thank them for sharing.

People love feeling like what they have to say matters. The easiest way to do this on social media is to share their content, or thank them for sharing. These actions can feel like rewards for users. Not only that, but it keeps your company top of mind. These people are just networking with you for now, but can quickly become qualified leads and sales down the road. Even if they don’t, you have improved your brand reputation and that can lead to positive word of mouth.

Always respond to mentions and messages.

Part of making people feel valued ties into not ignoring them. Respond to every single mention, message, retweet, or share. And do it in a timely manner. People have very short term memory on social media, so it’s important to thank them or respond quickly. Again, this will help you to stay top of mind. Stop thinking of your business profiles as simply that, and treat them as if they are actual personas. That way when you interact with other users you can give them the sense that they are talking to a person versus a faceless company. Be personable in all your responses to user interactions!

Never ignore a chance to connect.

This goes beyond simply networking. If you see someone post a question that you can answer -- answer it. It doesn’t matter if they may or may not be someone you can easily turn into a sale. The only thing that matters is that they have a problem that your business has the opportunity of solving. Brand reputation and awareness are some of the most important things on social media. Going the extra mile and helping when you don’t HAVE to is a great way of improving in these areas. Remember, the point of social media is making people feel valued.

View User Profile for Steve Hoag Steve is a recent graduate from UW, and the Marketing Coordinator at Fast Track. He primarily has experience in the tech and start-up industries. When he's not busy promoting Fast Track, he's watching Huskies or Green Bay Packers football. You can find him on Twitter @steven_hoag .
Posted by Steve Hoag Monday, February 24, 2014 6:44:00 PM Categories: B2B B2C enterprise inbound marketing social media social media marketing

Social Media Marketing: 3 Overlooked Mistakes 

By Steve Hoag

social media marketing mistakes

Social media needs to be on every marketer’s radar. It also needs to be done the right way. It’s one of the easiest ways to boost your brand presence, as long as you properly manage it. There are many ‘how to’ articles on social media, but it’s also worth noting what NOT to do. Instead of mentioning the obvious pitfalls, this article will focus on some overlooked ones that can also derail your marketing program.

Not being active when your target segment is.

This really depends on what sort of business you are. If you operate only in the local market, by all means post entirely during standard business hours. If you are an internet business though, paying attention to your target segment’s hours of activity is trickier. Possible leads and sales can come at any time of the day. That’s why it’s important to take advantage of social media platforms like HootSuite or TweetDeck that allow you to schedule tweets ahead of time. Make sure your business has a steady stream of tweets throughout the day so that it is always in front of the right eyes, regardless of where they are in the world.

Not taking advantage of free analytics to track engagement.

A lot of people think the most important metrics on social media are follower counts. While these are important, they don’t give an accurate picture of what kind of engagement you are getting. There are many free tools out there that can track important metrics like engagement, influence, and clickthrough rates. For example, Klout measures your social media influence and what you are most influential in. Services like bit.ly not only shorten your URLS, but also track when and where people are clicking through on your links. Using services like these in conjunction with the standard metrics social media networks give you will help to paint a much more accurate picture. You don’t need a fancy analytics solution right off the bat to help give you insight!

Abusing hashtags.

#Don’t #Use #Hashtags #For #Every #Word. Hashtags used to only be used for Twitter, but they have since expanded to services like Facebook and Instagram. Instagram is notorious for people abusing hashtags like #nofilter etc. Don’t treat your business accounts like a teenage girl’s. Only use hashtags for appropriate phrases that reach out to your target segment. For example, #webdesign if you are in the web design business. Don’t use too many hashtags even if they are relevant in every post. That can turn people away from engaging with your posts. Finally, please avoid using hashtags in networks that can’t leverage them. There are many people on LinkedIn who post things that use hashtags even though they don’t serve any discernable business purpose. Use them when they’re appropriate and crucial to reaching your audience.

 

View User Profile for Steve Hoag Steve is a recent graduate from UW, and the Marketing Coordinator at Fast Track. He primarily has experience in the tech and start-up industries. When he's not busy promoting Fast Track, he's watching Huskies or Green Bay Packers football. You can find him on Twitter @steven_hoag .
Posted by Steve Hoag Friday, February 21, 2014 8:06:00 PM Categories: B2B B2C blogging enterprise inbound marketing SEO social media social media marketing

The Ultimate Website: Three Must-Haves 

By Steve Hoag

website must haves

 

Every website needs a few crucial components to be at the top of its game. Some of these change with new technology, but many stay the same. As a business, you need to ask yourself do you want the ultimate website? Or do you just want a run of the mill solution? If you are willing to make a serious business investment in your future then keep reading!

Responsive Design.

Responsive design was a trend, now it’s becoming a staple. People aren’t visiting websites with just a PC like they were before. Millions have smartphones, tablets, game consoles, and smart TV’s. It’s becoming increasingly important to ensure that anyone can view your website properly from any device. If one person can’t see your website, that means one less potential sale. It might not seem like much, but these numbers can add up quickly! By including responsive design you are helping to maximize your online reach. Don’t do the opposite by overlooking this feature.

A Clear, Intuitive Structure.

Another crucial component of every great website is a clear and intuitive structure. Confusion is one of the biggest enemies when it comes to web design. People need to quickly know exactly what they’re looking at, and where to go on every page. Too much clutter can lead to higher bounce rates and missed opportunities.  Don’t use too many menu items. Keep it as concise as possible.                                                                

A Compelling Story.

Storytelling goes back thousands of years. People have enjoyed hearing stories since the dawn of civilization. Storytelling doesn’t only happen in books or fireside stories. It happens on every business website too. It’s extremely important to tell a great, compelling story. You need to be able to guide every user through a persuasive narrative about your company, products, and value proposition. Don’t make them feel like they’re reading through a product spec sheet. You are selling your company as much as you are your product. In order for consumers to invest in you, they need to believe in your story and vision first. A compelling story that flows through every facet of your website is a major step towards accomplishing this.

View User Profile for Steve Hoag Steve is a recent graduate from UW, and the Marketing Coordinator at Fast Track. He primarily has experience in the tech and start-up industries. When he's not busy promoting Fast Track, he's watching Huskies or Green Bay Packers football. You can find him on Twitter @steven_hoag .
Posted by Steve Hoag Tuesday, February 18, 2014 4:36:00 PM Categories: B2B B2C enterprise SMB web design web development web trends website
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