Archive for December, 2013

How to Optimize Your Business Website for the Mobile Era

December 23rd, 2013

It’s a sure bet at least some of your readers are browsing your website or email newsletter on their mobile devices: Nine in ten American adults now own smartphones and a third of American adults own a tablet computer such as an iPad, up from 18 percent a year ago. For some marketers, mobile traffic is already outpacing desktop visitors, but adapting your web presence to the tablet era can be a challenge.

Having a mobile presence that works for people is really important, because if they’re frustrated with your site on their phone, they’re probably not going to go to their desktop computer and try to find your site there, especially if they’re doing something location-based

Hone in on your priorities. Start to optimize your web presence for mobile by looking at the top priorities you have for your business. Different companies interact differently with customers online. For example, a brick and-mortar business may primarily be concerned with making sure their location and hours remain highly visible. Professional offices may want clients to be able to easily schedule an appointment. Other businesses may value having their multimedia content be highly accessible in a mobile environment.

If you have a very dynamic site with a lot of moving parts, it may be hard to navigate the entire site on a tablet, let alone a mobile phone.

What would you most like your customers to be able to do on your site? Ask yourself. Then, take those priorities and make sure those features are easy to find, and use, on mobile devices.

One big obstacle to adapting your business’ web presence for mobile devices is that creating a dedicated mobile site can be expensive and complex. If you don’t have the resources to create an app or mobile site, responsive design may be just the solution.

Responsive design means that your website will be reconfigured and resized so it looks good on any screen, without having to design a website for each mobile device or browser.

Just make sure the theme you select is “responsive”—meaning that it responds or adapts to the size of the screen the visitor is viewing on. Typically, responsive themes mention this feature in their descriptions..

Unfortunately, there’s no simple plugin to make a non-responsive theme responsive. It really does require switching themes. An experienced web developer can help with the process so that the transition is smooth, without broken features on your site.

Create a dedicated mobile site.  What if you want the best mobile experience for your audience and have the resources to do it? If that’s the case, you’re going to create a dedicated mobile site for the small screen. This is a more expensive option than developing a responsive website, but can make sense for some businesses—for example, if you’d like people to be able to easily purchase from their mobile phone and your online catalog is extensive, a mobile site may yield a good return on your investment.

It’s tempting to add columns, sidebars and widgets on your mobile site, but very hard to click on the right thing when trying to scroll in and out on a mobile device. So remember to prioritize your features and layout around your business goals.

Test your site out on various devices.Whichever route you take—responsive design or dedicated mobile—here are a few steps you’ll need to follow up and make sure your customers have a great experience.

Test your site on various devices and with various operating systems. The mobile world comes in all shapes and sizes, with a variety of operating platforms including iOS, Android and Windows. A font that may look perfect on a desktop computer might be hard to read on a phone, for example. It’s a good idea to test out phone numbers, to make sure that clicking on them on your mobile device allows you to actually make a phone call. Something non-standard, like putting periods between numbers, doesn’t work. You can easily check whether it does or not right from your phone.

Compare your site to others. Looking at sites you like or wish to imitate on various devices can be helpful. Pay attention to which features improve your experience and which leave you frustrated. Get a sense for how your competitors, suppliers or vendors do mobile design by looking at a single site on multiple screen sizes and multiple devices.

Compare mobile visitors before and after. Google Analytics and other Web traffic tools make it a cinch to compare the percentage of traffic coming from mobile, so find out if your efforts are paying off. Other numbers to track if you choose to optimize for mobile traffic: time that mobile visitors spend on your site, and how many visitors are clicking on your calls-to-action or other conversion

How do you ensure you have a mobile optimized website? Contact Web Interactive today for a free evaluation of your current circumstances and how we can assist you.

TCC Web Interactive
A Division of the Computer Company, Inc.
Website Design
(800) 418 2358

10 Ways to Use Video in Your Marketing

December 5th, 2013

1. Add video to your LinkedIn profile I don’t know about you, but one of the first places I go when I meet someone new is LinkedIn. I want to find out more about them, their history, and who they know. Now you can include a video in your LinkedIn profile – the perfect place for new connections to get a better idea of what you’re all about and start bonding with you, anchoring good feelings about you from day one.

2. Put a link to your video in your email signature you never know who your emails might get forwarded to maybe one of your customers passes on your info to another prospect. By having your intro video in the signature, you make it easier for people to get to know you better (and that’s crucial!)

3. Feature a video in your email newsletter Whether you’re already sending out regular emails to your customers and prospects or you plan to start email marketing in the future, the question “what do I write about” always comes up. You can feature your intro video or a
content / tip / FAQ video in the email …. Just write a little bit of text to lead into it, include a picture of the video linking to it on your website or YouTube.

4. Post video in Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google +, etc. This works great, especially if you get into the habit of producing video on a regular basis (like once a month would be nice). It’s always tricky coming up with content to post in social media that is business related. FAQ and SAQ’s (should ask questions) are the solution. People love to watch and share videos, and it’s also a way to build up a formidable presence in Google (host your videos on YouTube AND embed on your website). A good strategy is to post a link to the YouTube video in Facebook one day, LinkedIn another day, Google + another day, etc. All this interlinking gets you exposure in lots of places, all of which strengthens your presence in Google.

5. Put an intro video on your website home page just having video on your website will give you a 50x better chance of ranking on Google. Besides that, you’ll better engage the people that come to your site so they stay longer and “bounce” less (which can hurt your google
rankings). Plus it makes the experience more personal and of course, helps prospects to better know, like, and trust you.

6. Turn your video into a blog post just like with the email newsletter, you can use the video as content for your blog. I recommend hosting it on YouTube, embedding it in the blog post, and also write some intro text. It’s also handy to include a transcript of the video (all that text is good for Google). AND – upload that transcript to YouTube! (Google is already “reading” your videos, so make it easier for them and ye shall be rewarded)

7. Run a video ad campaign on Google Adwords You may or may not be a fan of those video ads that show up before the real video plays – but it works. Did you know you can use those same $100 adwords credits that come in the mail for video ads too?

8. Ask each of your clients to share your video with at least one person. The whole video thing just makes you stand out.If you have a “real” video of you talking, being interviewed as the expert, it does a great job of positioning you in the eyes of the viewer.It’s not only easier for your clients to forward than the typical “hey, this guy does blah blah blah, you should call him”email, but it’s also more effective.

9. Send your video ahead before making that “cold call” If you email someone your video first, they will already know what to expect by the time you call them. Never make another cold call again

10. Do nothing – the video will likely show up in the search engines all by itself By hosting your video on YouTube, and spending a little time incorporating the right keywords (watch this) into the title, description, and tags section of the video, that video stands an excellent chance of showing up in a regular Google search. Why? Because Google owns YouTube, and videos are big right now – and they make money off of it!

Want to incorporate videos in your SEO strategy for your website? Please contact US today for a free evaluation of your website
and how we can improve your results.

TCC Web Interactive
A Division of the Computer Company, Inc.
Website Design CT
15 Commerce Drive, Cromwell, CT
(860) 635-0500










By Mike

Social Media Trends That Will Make You Rethink Your Social Strategy

December 2nd, 2013

Know what the fastest-growing demographic on Twitter is? Or how many new members join LinkedIn every second? The answers will surprise you!

If you’re managing social media for your business, it might be useful to know about some of the most surprising social media statistics this year. Here are some that might make you rethink the way you’re approaching social media.

The fastest growing demographic on Twitter is the 55–64 year age bracket.

This demographic has grown 79% since 2012.

The 45–54 year age bracket is the fastest growing demographic on both Facebook and Google+.

For Facebook, this group has jumped 46%.

For Google+, 56%.

Those are impressive numbers against the prevailing idea that social media is “just for teenagers.” It certainly points to the importance of having a solid social media strategy if these age brackets fit into your target demographic.

Rethink it: Keep older users in mind when using social media, particularly on these three platforms. Our age makes a difference to our taste and interests, so if you’re focusing on younger users with the content you post, you could be missing an important demographic.

189 million of Facebook’s users are “mobile only”

Not only does Facebook have millions of users who don’t access it from a desktop or laptop, but mobile use generates 30% of Facebook’s ad revenue as well. This is a 7% increase from the end of 2012 already.

Rethink it: There are probably more users accessing Facebook from mobile devices than you thought. It’s worth considering how your content displays on mobile devices and smaller screens before posting it, particularly if your target market is full of mobile users. Of course, make sure to make sharing to social media from mobile more straightforward.

YouTube reaches more U.S. adults aged 18–34 than any cable network

Did you think TV was the best way to reach the masses? Well if you’re after 18–34 year olds in the U.S., you’ll have more luck reaching them through YouTube. Of course, one video won’t necessarily reach more viewers than a cable network could, but utilizing a platform with such a wide user base makes a lot of sense.

Rethink it: If you’ve been putting off adding video to your strategy, now’s the time to give it a go. You could start small with simple five-minute videos explaining what your company does or introducing your team.

Every second two new members join LinkedIn

LinkedIn, the social network for professionals, continues to grow every second. From groups to blogs to job listings, this platform is a rich source of information and conversation for professionals who want to connect to others in their industry.

Rethink it: LinkedIn is definitely worth paying attention to. In particular, this is a place where you may want to focus more on new users. Making your group or community a great source of information and a newbie-friendly space can help you to make the most out of the growing userbase.

Make sure you share consistently to your LinkedIn company page and profile by, for example,scheduling your posts.

Social Media has overtaken porn as the No. 1 activity on the web

We all knew social media was popular, but this popular? Apparently it’s the most common thing we do online. Sonext time you find yourself watching Kitten vs. Watermelon videos on Facebook, you can at least console yourself with the fact that the majority of people online right now are doing something similar.

Social media carries more weight than ever. It’s clearly not a fad, or a phase. It continues to grow as a habit, and new platforms continue to appear and develop.

Rethink it: Putting time and effort into your social media strategy clearly makes sense in light of these stats. If you weren’t already serious about social media, you might want to give it a bitmore of your time now.

LinkedIn has a lower percentage of active users than Pinterest, Google+, Twitter and Facebook

Although LinkedIn is gathering new users at a fast rate, the number of active users is lower than most of the biggest social networks around. So more people are signing up, but they’re not participating. This means you’re probably not going to have as good a response with participatory content on LinkedIn, like contests or polls, as you might on Facebook or Twitter.

Rethink it: If you’re hoping to get people involved, think about which platforms are best for that. Looking at the latest Twitter statistics and Facebook statistics, these platforms might be a better place for your contest or survey, while passive content like blog posts or slide decks might be just right for your LinkedIn audience.

93% of marketers use social media for business

Only 7% of marketers say they don’t use social media for their business. That means there are lots of people out there getting involved and managing a social media strategy. It’s becoming more common to include social media as part of an overall marketing budget or strategy, as opposed to when it was the outlier that no one wanted to spend time or money on.

Rethink it: If you’re struggling to make your strategy work, or you just want some advice, you don’t have to go it alone. If 93% of marketers are using social media for business, you can probably find someone to give you a hand. Plus, there are lots of blogs, videos and slide decks around to help you out. Be sure to find the right social media management tool for you to stay on top of everything.

25% of smartphone owners ages 18–44 say they can’t recall the last time their smartphone wasn’t next to them

It’s pretty clear that mobile is a growing space that we need to pay attention to. And we’ve all heard the cliché of smartphone owners who don’t want to let go of their phones, even for five minutes. Well, apparently that’s not too far from the truth. If 25% of people aged 18–44 can’t remember not having their phone with them, there are probably very few times when they’re not connected to the web in some way.

Rethink it: While you can reach people almost anytime, since they have their smartphones with them almost always, this also means you can interrupt pretty much any part of their lives. Don’t forget that having a phone in your pocket all the time isn’t the same as being available all the time.

Even though 62% of marketers blog or plan to blog in 2013, only 9% of US marketing companies employ a full-time blogger

Blogging is clearly a big focus for marketers who want to take advantage of social media and content marketing. This is great, because blogging for your business has lots of advantages: you can control your company blog, you can set the tone and use it to market your product, share company news or provide interesting information for your customers. With only 9% of marketing companies hiring bloggers full-time, however, the pressure to produce high-quality content consistently will be a lot higher.

What a lot of people struggle here is how to write the best headlines for your articles, when the best time is to publish posts and lots of other blogging questions that arise when people are starting out.

(Of course, not all marketers work at marketing companies, but the stats are still interesting–how many companies in any industry can afford to hire–or already have–a full-time blogger?)

Rethink it: If you don’t have (or can’t afford) a full-time blogger for your business, be aware that having a content strategy that requires consistently posting on your blog will mean a lot of work for your marketing team and/or other team members in your company to keep up that volume. This can work, it’s just important to realize how big a task it is to run with a full-time content strategy without a full-time content creator.

25% of Facebook users don’t bother with privacy settings

We’ve seen a lot of news about social media companies and privacy. Facebook itself has been in the news several times over privacy issues, Instagram users recently got in a problem area over changing their terms of service, and the recent NSA news has seen people become more conscious of their privacy online.

But despite these high-profile cases of security-conscious users pushing back against social networks and web services, Velocity Digital reports that 25% of Facebook users don’t even look at their privacy settings.

Rethink it: Assuming that all of your customers are thinking along the same lines could be a big mistake. Especially if you’re basing that on what you’ve heard or read in the tech news. Remember that your customers might have very different priorities than what you expect.

Your social media strategy really comes down to what your goals are, and who your target customers are, but it doesn’t hurt to pay attention to the trends happening across the web. Hopefully these stats will help you to identify trends that will affect your strategy and your need to adjust accordingly.

Want to discuss these trends and see how they can maximize your website sales.

Contact Web Interactive at 800 418 2358

TCC Web Interactive
A Division of the Computer Company, Inc.
15 Commerce Drive, Cromwell, CT
(860) 635-0500






By Belle Beth Cooper