Titan Digital and Google swept into Port Macquarie for a presentation event at Rydges on 25 October. John Boseley and Fernanda Rivera gave us an eye-opening and occasionally eye-popping presentation on the current trends in Internet searching, how people use their mobile devices and what works best in website designs and social media for success in the search ladder.
A live display of internet users (http://www.internetlivestats.com/) showed us that approximately 3½ billion connections were active on the internet, looking at just over 1 billion web addresses. Businesses wanting to be noticed in that massive crowd need to have many aspects of their web presence clear and targeted to their main audience. Google clarified that the search algorithm can distinguish websites that give the best customer experiencing when cruising around them, and puts them up the search results ladder.
Good user experience is evaluated in the 5 following ways:
- Mobile responsive sites score highly because 50% of searches are now done on smart phones
- Content must be targeted to the search – particularly if a paid campaign like AdWords is employed. Clicking on the Ad and finding oneself on the Home page, requiring crucial seconds of intelligent navigation to find the actual topic of interest, is off-putting, scores the site downwards and loses potential customers rapidly.
- Content must be relevant to the user and easy to read. Stuffing the content with key phrases, heavy use of capitals and inverted commas, pop-up calls to action (Subscribe now!) all have a negative effect on search ratings. What was fashionable only 3 years ago is sooo passé now…
- Content must be fresh, and refreshed frequently. Who believes a site that hasn’t been updated for those 3 years? Something as simple as a blog (like this one!) is sufficient to improve the freshness of the site.
- FaceBook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn as a minimum need to be coordinated with the business website and kept up to date. Savvy computer users check out any business of interest in the social media before even contacting them.
It’s not enough anymore to put up a shop window – you have to keep it polished and well arranged, refreshed, promoted, relevant.