The Folly of Black Hat SEO

The Folly of Black Hat SEO

If you are a business owner who is thinking of employing an SEO agency to help boost your rankings, as with everything that might be done online, there is right way and a wrong way to do it. We’ll come on to the right way shortly, but first, it’s only fair that we outline what the wrong way is, and more importantly how it can seriously damage your business.

We are talking about ‘Black Hat’ SEO and as the name might suggest it is an area of SEO that attracts all kinds of undesirables from chancers to outright scammers. It must be said that if you were to speak to Google, they might tell you ‘All’ SEO is wrong, simply because they do not want to see any actions which influence their search results. That being said they actually rely on SEO and organic searches, as it allows them to also show their paid results, and in turn, earn the billions of dollars that they do.

Where Google most certainly come down hard is when they find websites that try to rank themselves using SEO techniques that they have explicitly stated is against their terms of service. In other words, you could say that these black hat SEO tactics are outlawed, and just as with outlaws in classic Western movies, websites that break Google’s ‘laws’ normally end up getting caught and being punished.

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How to Build an Effective Email Marketing

Email might seem like the ‘family car’ of online marketing sometimes. It’s been around a long time, it’s dependable, but it’s not flashy or attention-grabbing like some of the ‘newer models’ (like Instagram, Twitter and TikTok) are.

But writing off email marketing would be a mistake. It is a well-known problem that the true return on investment for social media for your business is hard to calculate. And it’s also equally well known that for most of us, checking our emails happens two or three times a day (if not more).

So, on those two points alone, it’s worth spending time on your email marketing. The question is, how best to do it. Here are some of the steps you can take to build an effective email marketing operation.

In the Inbox

First things first: get the basics right. The email should tell the recipient who it’s from (i.e. at the ‘From’ label) and also the topic before they even open it.

For the subject line avoiding spammy titles or those that create false urgency is also advisable. So, avoid shouting at your customer with things like ‘LAST CHANCE to get 30% off’. It works very occasionally, but soon, people get tired of it and tune out.

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Why People Don't Join Your Site

Web Design – This Is Why People Don’t Join Your Site

Possibly the most excellent post we’ve read this year: 8 Reasons Users Don’t Fill Out Sign Up Forms. Every website owner or maintainer ought to be required to read it and pass a comprehension test afterwards.

Newsletter-iconBriefly, the point is that users avoid signing up to become a member of a site unless they absolutely have to. Call it, if you will, “social media fatigue“. Ten years ago, the web was yours just like your TV set, and the only time you had to sign up for anything was if you were buying something. Now you can’t click a mouse button without logging in with a nick and password. Who can remember them all? Why does it feel like getting married every time you just want to leave a quick note somewhere?

Web marketing

Tim Berners-Lee Still Knows What’s Best For The Web

Sometimes you have to wonder what it’s like to be Tim Berners-Lee. To have coded out some basic piece of Internet technology that effectively made the other pieces come together, and then to see your baby become the new media for the whole  world and all of the effects it has. Is it working out the way he expected it to? Does he ever feel like Prometheus, perhaps having given us fire too soon?

Sir Tim recently gave a talk at the Nokia conference, cautioning us once again about the dangers of leaving privacy up to corporations and governments, and also about the importance of net neutrality.

Throughout the developed world we see the continued erosion of the idea that the web is a free zone for everyone. It’s starting to become a matter of where you live, what laws control the content, and from whom you buy access. Tim Berners-Lee, like Richard Stallman (founder of GNU), is one of our “Jiminy Crickets,” voices that can do little but talk, and so are out there quietly being the conscience of the tech world. The distressing thing is, their voices grow fainter as time goes on, and few are listening or taking up their cause. What that may spell for the continued level playing field of the web business market is anybody’s guess.

Web Audience Age Demographics

Web Designers – Know the Web Audience – Age Demographics

Every web designer should at least save a copy of this chart listing social media use by age. It’s a gold mine of information in a small image. Charting age brackets for young teens, young adults, Generation Y, Generation X, Baby Boomers, Older Boomers, and Seniors, it shows who’s using the features of the modern web, from creators to spectators.

Obviously, you can see the age range from 12 to 40 doing all of the web activity to speak of. After age 40, the dip falls off dramatically until you get to seniors whose extent of web use is email. One interesting exception: RSS usage is flat all the way across the age groups! As surprising as it may seem to those of us who simply can’t start our day without our news feed, syndication just may not be taking off like everybody expected it to.

The Very First Banner Ad

A Piece of Web History – The Very First Banner Ad

SCTimes brought up the very first web banner ad, created by none other than – AT&T! The American telecommunications company (and father of Unix and the C programming language, to boot) launched this ad in 1994.

For those of you who don’t remember, the banner ad’s phrase “you will” was the catch-phrase for AT&T’s early-’90s marketing campaign. TV commercials featured voice-overs asking “Have you ever…” followed by some Utopian visions of futuristic tech usage, and then closing with “you will! And the company that will bring it to you… AT&T!” It was so saturated that numerous parodies sprung up in computing culture. Some original AT&T ads on YouTube.

 

How To Avoid Costly Mistakes When Designing Your Website

How To Avoid Costly Mistakes When Designing Your Website

Designing a new website or making alterations to an existing one is fraught with the possibility of mistakes and sometimes even blunders. Therefore it is important that you take certain precautions before plunging into your web designing. Failure to do so may land you in delays rather than in quick success. The following guidelines would help you avoid the unnecessary fuss and frustration!

Know your prospective site user:
Acquire a good understanding of the expectations of your prospective site visitors. Analyze their needs. What do visitors of such websites look out for? What kind of websites do your prospective customers expect to see? What should be the layout and design of your website copy? Does it need photographs and graphics? Will you need to alter the content from time to time? A thorough customer research will answer all these questions

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Tips to avoid web designing mistakes

More Tips For How To Avoid Costly Mistakes When Designing Your Website

Keep the search engines in your focus:
All web surfers use search engines. Therefore, make sure your site is duly listed in a couple of popular search engines. It is also important that your site links up well internally, and all important pages open with a simple click of the mouse. Your website must be search-engine-friendly for which you must use keywords clearly not only in your website title but also repeatedly in the first paragraph of your web content and text. Remember your key words are the words that Internet users are expected to type in the search bar while looking out for your type of website.

Give usability top priority:
Make sure that your web design projects your brand very well. Your site’s usability is of vital importance. If it is not very user-friendly then web surfers will go elsewhere. It is the correct use of key words that makes your website user-friendly. Your texts should be clearly visible and site navigation smooth. Your fonts and colors should look pleasing to the eyes. Your link structure should help people find information quickly.

Remember that the usual top-level menu items are: Home, About Us, Products, Services, and Contact Information.