Sunday, March 8, 2015

Google Announcement: Search Algorithms Adds Mobile Friendly Elements & App Indexing to Improve Ranking On April 21, 2015

In recent months, Google has been talking about, “expanding on previous ranking changes such as addressing faulty redirects.” In August of 2014, Google made algorithm changes to Penguin and Panda to target websites that were false directing through hosting copied content on websites and sneakily using competitor tags behind their sites. These practices are now red flagged by these algorithms and could damage your Search Engine Ranking Placement (SERP).

As predicted in 2015, the mobile user percentage has surpassed the personal computer for information searches. Therefore, the goal in 2015 is to address mobile algorithms so users are receiving relevant information on their phones.

Google reps, Yoshikiyo Kato and Pierre Far noted “To improve the search experience for smartphone users and address their pain points, we plan to roll out several ranking changes in the near future that address sites that are not configured for smartphone users.”
Google also said “users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”

On a mobile search, users should receive the most relevant results, no matter if the information resides on mobile-friendly web pages or apps. Google explained, “As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns. In the past, we’ve made updates to ensure a site is configured properly and viewable on modern devices. We’ve made it easier for users to find mobile-friendly web pages and we’ve introduced App Indexing to surface useful content from apps. Today, we’re announcing two important changes to help users discover more mobile-friendly content.”

1. Mobile-friendly websites in search results
April 21, 2015 Google will be expanding their use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages and will have a significant impact on search outcomes. In turn, users will find it effortless to get appropriate, quality search outcomes that are optimized for all mobile devices.
If you are interested in a mobile-friendly site, Google offers a guide to make your site mobile-friendly. You can get ready for this change by using the following tools to see how Googlebot views your pages:

To test web pages, use the Mobile-Friendly Test.
If you have a website, you can use your Webmaster Tools account to get a full list of mobile usability issues across your site using the Mobile Usability Report. There are other free online test services on the web to explore the results of your mobile friendly results, but they may not be effective as Google’s tools.

2. Add relevant app content.
Google is currently using information from indexed apps as a factor in ranking for signed-in users who have the app installed. As a result, Google may now surface content from indexed apps more prominently in search. To find out how to implement App Indexing, which allows us to surface this information in search results, have a look at our step-by-step guide.
Simply summarized, if your website is not mobile friendly today, it will not rank high in a mobile search and mobile searches now far exceed the personal computer. Take action today and contact your web master to make these improvements to your website. 
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Saturday, March 7, 2015

Why is it Important to Update Your Website?

The Internet was introduced to consumers in 1969, however, it wasn’t until 1990 when one of the largest advancements was written, called the World Wide Web. This progression led to the first web page in 1991. With the nature of technology, it seems impossible to keep up. As a business owner, it’s essential to pay attention to the changes that could affect your company. For most consumers today, the first impression of a company is usually through their website. Ask yourself, “When was the last time I reviewed my website and does it speak well for my product or service?” Also, if a company’s website does not appear on the first page in a specific search, you may want to schedule a review. The following checklist should help with your analysis.
Updating Your Content 
Site content is a reflection of a company and keeping the content fresh may be the determining factor as to whether a consumer chooses your company or a competitor. Not only is current content good for business, but it keeps search engines happy as well. This also helps improve SERPs (Search Engine Ranking Page) – search engine algorithms that are designed to determine page rankings by checking for new, relevant and fresh content on sites.

Social Media Icons
Utilizing social media is just as important as having a website. A great online marketing strategy is to link your website with your company’s social media networks. Incorporating social media may help your web presence and assist with search engine optimization.

Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a methodology of strategies and algorithms used to increase the visitor traffic to a website by acquiring a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine. When applied to web pages appropriately, it adds relevance to the web page in a user search. If you are wondering how your website SEO ranks, you can check your status through among other resources.

Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?
Internet users have gravitated to their mobile devices since the birth of the smart phone. The accessibility to smart phones has made exploring the Internet much easier; therefore it is very important that your website transfers well to a mobile device. Statistics provided by Pew Research Center (May 2013) show that 91 percent of Americans own a cell phone, 56 percent have a smartphone – 28 percent of cell owners own an Android, 25 percent own an iPhone, and four percent own a Blackberry. For a minimal fee, there are services out there that can make a website mobile friendly like

Website Speed
There could be many issues contributing to slow web page speed.
The speed of a page is made up of both front-end and server-side components.
When a user requests a website, the front-end and server-side both take time to pull up the web page. The average time to call for a website is one to three seconds. Check your website’s speed at If you are not thrilled with your website’s performance, investigate the front-end and server-side components to see if there are any real issues.

Cross-Browser Compatibility
With the multiple browsers out there, be sure your website’s coding will translate on the most commonly used browsers. Some of the more popular browsers include Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Netscape and Opera. When your webmaster prepares the coding for your company’s website, it is best to use only standard compliant coding to make a website cross-browser compatible. Test your website’s browser compatibility at
These are just a few common practices to consider when reviewing the success of your company’s website. However, it could be useful to meet with your webmaster to find out about the latest and greatest applications for websites. Take control of your business and make 2014 the year to embrace the latest online marketing practices for your company. 
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Friday, March 6, 2015

Why Is It Important to Claim Your Online Business Listings?

 Northern AZ Social

Have you ever Googled your own business to see what listing websites generate your company profile? Have you ever seen your business in an online directory like Manta or Yelp, yet you don’t recall adding yourself to this online listing service? As a business owner, you focus so much on how your company is marketed and branded through print, television and radio advertising, but what may be the most important media outlet is found digitally. Why, you ask? Online directory listings are on the Internet 24/7 and if you haven’t claimed these listings, you may have the wrong information reaching potential customers, not enough information on the web, or find bad reviews or comments that could be affecting your productivity.
In most cases, online directories already have your business address listed. If that is the circumstance, all you need to do is claim your listing. The steps to claim your business listing vary from site to site. Regardless of the process, verifying your business listings allows you to provide a complete and accurate profile for your customers. Claiming your online listing will allow you to edit your company information, customize your profile, respond to reviews, reap the benefits of promotional offers and, best of all, increase your website’s search engine optimization (SEO). If you don’t have time to manage all of your directory listings, there are also digital marketing services that can claim and update all of youonline business profiles on a continuing basis for a fee.
Sixty percent of consumers are on Google every month to help them find a quality business. Also, 70 percent of Internet search inquiries are for business products or services. There are hundreds of listing websites on the web. If you plan to claim your listings yourself, there are a few things to consider.
1) Create an outline of the content you will use for your listings. This includes company name, company description, address, website, logo, contact information, video links and social media links. Make the most of expanded listing offerings to provide as much information as customers could want to help them make the decision to choose your business.
2) Begin with the top 20 listing websites most commonly used by consumers.
3) Claim your listings
Some listing websites allow you to click on a button that sends a verification code to your phone for immediate action. Others may send you information through the mail about how to claim your listing. Regardless of the process, it’s important to verify your business listings in order to provide an accurate profile for your customers.

4) Respond to reviews
With so much online competition, reviews play an important role with business purchases. Many online directory websites allow customers to submit reviews. If you’ve claimed your profile, you’ll have the opportunity to respond to online reviews. Responding to these reviews professionally may help you build stronger relationships with your customers. Also, thank customers for their positive feedback. Look at negative reviews as an opportunity to resolve any issues. Customers will appreciate your desire to achieve customer satisfaction, and your sales revenue may increase as a result.
5) Utilize promotional offers
Take advantage of promotional opportunities for your business. These promotions are usually by way of coupon offers. For example, a potential customer may have the chance to claim a 15 percent off their purchase if they visit your business within a window of time. A small cost is usually incorporated to participate, but promotional offers can increase conversions and get more customers through the door. You can also track your promotion so your business can modify the promotion or try something different.
Whether you are in a small town or located in the big city – realize the web reaches all consumers. It also applies to all businesses, and all industries. Steve Bracety, general manager of the Prescott Resort Conference Center, increases his annual revenues by his proactive marketing approach when managing his brand, reviews and promotions through online directories. “Managing your online reputation is mandatory in today’s market. Undesirable reviews could steer new business away from your service or product. Personalizing our responses to the customer’s experience in a timely fashion is critical, whether it be a positive or negative review.”
As a business owner, you should be aware of how your brand is represented online. Be proactive. If you are in control of your brand and image – you are more in control of your revenue. 
Written by Northern AZ Social 
 Learn more about what you should be doing online for your business by contacting at