The following are the top articles we are reading in the world of design, marketing, and technology that might give you a good idea that can apply to your business or Government agency. These include new website design ideas and why you should employ ethical SEO tactics to ensure your website rankings do not get dinged.
Bad SEO Habits That May Get Your Burned
In this article from Search Engine Land, the author Stephen Spencer provides several examples of black-hat and grey-hat SEO techniques that could hurt your websites rankings in the eyes of Google and Bing
Read the article here: searchengineland.com/flying-close-to-the-sun-seo-tactics-that-may-get-you-burned-304233
20 New Web Design Ideas for August 2018
If you are looking for good ideas for your website redesign, Web Design Depot has a great article from Paddi MacDonnell that provides 20 examples of new sites or website refreshes. These include a new game from MailChimp, a guide to plants for people who do not have a green thumb and some new designs that might make you motion sick. These examples include ideas with new animations bold colors and scrolling effects.
Read the article here: www.webdesignerdepot.com/2018/08/20-freshest-web-designs-august-2018/
5 Brands Using Illustration in There Branding Efforts
Here is an article from Creative Bloq that gives five examples of how some brands are using Illustration to enhance their brand.
Read the article here: www.creativebloq.com/inspiration/5-mesmerising-uses-of-illustration-in-branding
43 Inspiring Street Art Examples
Another cool article from Creative Bloq that is more related to artistic inspiration is an article that provides 43 samples of street art from around the world.
Read the article here: www.creativebloq.com/street-art/examples-street-art-612334
New Google G Suite Update for Businesses
Read the latest article from Google with information on the latest updates to the G Suite service that includes better collaboration features and more secure email capabilities.
Read the article here: www.blog.google/products/g-suite/helping-enterprises-stay-competitive-with-new-updates-in-g-suite/
Please contact us if you need assistance with our design or online technology project.
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For a long time, we worked with many San Francisco Bay Area businesses and Government Agencies where the IT Department was always in charge of the organization's website. The reason for this was because it was technology and when the internet started taking off, it required the expertise of the IT department to build the server to host the website, and they needed to code or install any web applications. Government Web Design
There are still some Government agencies and companies out there that still believe the IT department should manage their website if they are still hosting their website or if the organization thinks the IT Department should handle it because they believe it is too hard to update the site that was built by the IT department.
IT Department's central role should be to ensure the organizations' infrastructure (Network, servers, workstations, email, printer, phones, etc...) works and that end-users have no issues accessing the IT infrastructure. There should be no reason now that an organization or agency hosts there own website in-house. There are many hosting options out there that allow organizations to host websites offsite and that do not require the complex software infrastructure needed to host sites.
A company's website is a marketing and business development tool for businesses, especially B2B business. For government agencies, it is a marketing and customer service tool for its constituents and other stakeholders. Because of the above requirements, this requires the individual or team member managing websites to have different skill sets than what the IT staff has. IT staff are trained in technical skill sets and are focused on achieving technical success. Sites these days should be focused on achieving business goals.
For businesses, the Marketing and Sales Teams should be in charge of managing the website and making sure it is delivering on the strategy your organizations requires. If they do not have the expertise in-house, they can outsource web development and design to an outside agency but direct the strategy they want from the website. The Marketing Team can manage it on an ongoing basis since most Content Management Systems (CMS) are easy to use.
For Government Agencies, the internal Public Relations Department, or the different Department Managers in charge service delivery should be in charge of the strategy of the website and what they require from it. Administrative staff can then manage updates on an ongoing basis since as mentioned before, CMS systems are straightforward to use these days.
With our society's reliance on the web, especially in the mobile space, web technology has become more accessible to more people and is no longer a technology that can just be left to the side. Your website can be a critical part of your business organizations success.
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A few times a year, Google performs a "core" update to its search Algorithm each year. This month, they released a pretty big "Core" update that affected quite a few websites. This update is being nicknamed the Medic update, because of the type of sites it may have changed. Originally based upon different forums this update affected the ranking of Medical websites, but after the dust has settled, it has touched a broad spectrum of websites. I know our site got hit and for a period of time, rankings for some keywords dropped back a couple of pages, but now we are back where we were before August 1st on those keywords.
Google's statement about this update was that there is no real fix if your rankings dropped and they went with their boiler point comment of continue to provide great content. That got a lot of SEO experts rushing to guesses on what the update affected, and because it is a broad one, it is really hard to tell.
Two of the areas that most people were guessing were websites that were lacking Expertise, Authoritativeness, or Trustworthiness (E-A-T). Now, this is a guideline from Google's "Search Quality Evaluator's Guide." Google hires these Evaluators to scour the world wide web and manually rank sites based on these guidelines. Now Google mentions that these guidelines do not directly affect there search algorithm, immediately, but it is a great tool to help you with making sure your site is considered quality in the eyes of Google.
Now going back to E-A-T, here is the definition of E-A-T form the Guideline:
"Low quality pages often lack an appropriate level of E-A-T for the purpose of the page. Here are some examples:
Note: Websites with user-generated content span the Page Quality rating spectrum. Please pay careful attention to websites that allow users to publish content with little oversight, such as social networking pages, video sharing websites, volunteer-created encyclopedias, article sharing websites, forums, etc. Depending on the topic, pages on these websites
may lack E-A-T. Important: The Low rating should be used if the page lacks appropriate E-A-T for its purpose."
Now the lack of E-A-T to YMYL pages (Your Money or Your Life) as termed by Google seemed to be the pages hit hardest. If you are not familar with this term, here is the definition from Google's Search Quality Guidlines.
"Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) Pages
Some types of pages could potentially impact the future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety of users. We call
such pages “Your Money or Your Life” pages, or YMYL. The following are examples of YMYL pages:
We have very high Page Quality rating standards for YMYL pages because low quality YMYL pages could potentially"
In a nutshell, the benefit I got from this update was the fact that we need to always keep up with our SEO Optimization tasks and we need to really incorporate these guidelines into our website builds even though they may not affect Google Search Algoythim ;-)
To access this guideline your self, you can go here:
Here is another article with more info on the August core update:
As always please contact us if you have any questions or need any assistance with your website and graphic efforts.
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As a web designer and online marketer for several San Francisco Bay Area small businesses, we are always scouring the world wide web for resources and training that will help us with maximizing our client's online marketing investments.
A big part of building a marketing strategy is performing a proper discovery to find out what is possible. In a recent veg out session on Google, I stumbled upon a site from Google called Consumer Barometer. Google Consumer Barometer essentially is a survey that Google performed with internet users, and this site shows how people around the world (45 countries) use the internet. The tool provides information using downloadable charts that show country-specific information, digital trends over time and what devices people are using to access the internet.
Here are some of the specific insights we found interesting.
Graph Builder Which devices do people use?
In the graph, it shows that 90% of people use a basic mobile phone + smartphone and 78% use a smartphone which is pretty close to the 89% of people who use a TV. Now I am not 100% sure if that is 89% of people who access the internet using a TV, but I am sure because this includes offline people, I am guessing not all of teh 89% users access the internet via there TV. However, it is telling that the Smart Phone will soon over take the TV for devices people use.
Within the Millennials Audience Stories, based upon there survey if you are trying to reach Millennials it will help to know that 90% go online daily, 75% of Millennials go online via a smartphone at least as often as a computer and 55% of Millennials use search engines to learn about products.
To play with tool yourself, go to the following link: www.consumerbarometer.com/en/