A New Site for a New Year

It’s nearly 2017, and we live in a world so technologically advanced that people don’t even bat an eye when they hear about technology like self-driving cars and pocket-sized mobile printers. However, even in a society of smart watches and home automation, many businesses are offering customers outdated, unsightly, and poorly-functioning webpages. In an increasingly competitive marketplace, your lackluster website may be the tipping point that drives consumers elsewhere.

This new year, in addition to your own list of goals, make a few for your business, including revamping your website. Responsive, attractive, and optimized websites can make a great first impression with web visitors, improve your conversion rates, and ultimately drive your sales.

Signs Your Website Needs A New Year’s Makeover

Wondering whether or not your website needs an update? Read through these signs that your site needs to be overhauled, and how working with the right web design company can help.

Pages Load Slowly

One of the hallmarks of an unprofessional website is pages that take forever to load. Loading problems are caused by a long list of offenders, ranging from music that plays automatically to the wrong image format to bulky, unnecessary code. Unfortunately, even a few seconds of lag could be enough to send potential customers running. Research has shown that 53% of web users abandon a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, which is why every business owner should spend the time to evaluate the load speed of their site.

If your website loads slowly, consider having your entire website rebuilt by a professional web design company like Infogenix. In addition to preserving and optimizing the content that you have produced over the years, the web experts here at Infogenix can help you to streamline your website, improve the flow of your pages, and update the look of your site.

Traffic Is Low

Web traffic isn’t always easy to come by, with the top Google listing nabbing nearly 33% of your potential customers. The further down your search ranking, the less likely clients are to find your website and research your company, which is why SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is so important.

Search engines like Google use a complex set of algorithms to determine which websites are relevant to any given search. Among other things, these web crawlers look for keyword usage, meta tags, headlines, and updated content. SEO services like Infogenix can carefully evaluate your website, updating your content, settings, and headlines to more closely align with what search engines are looking for—improving your search ranking and encouraging traffic.

Your Conversion Rates Are Terrible

When it comes to your website, what are your goals? Are you trying to encourage people to buy from your online store or do you want people to follow your blog? Your success or failure at being able to guide people towards your goals is known as your website’s conversion rate. The higher your conversion rate, the more likely your web visitors are to use your website like you want them to.

Unfortunately, poor conversion rates often mean that your website is non-functional, confusing, or filled with pages that fail to load properly. The national average for conversion rates across all industries is 2.35%, with the top 25% of businesses averaging about 5.31%. If your conversion rates are lower than the national average, or you simply want to strengthen your site’s performance, consider having a professional evaluate your website to check for problems.

Don’t let your website fall short of phenomenal. Enlist the help of our team at Infogenix. With over seventeen years of experience and a deep understanding of design, SEO, and conversion strategies, our innovative Utah web design company can make your business shine online.

What is Google Really Looking For?

What is Google Looking For

Google is the world’s most popular search engine by far, with over 75% of Internet users reporting Google as their first choice. Yahoo, which was once one of the most popular search engines on the market, came in at around 8%. Because of their vast market share, Google’s policies and protocols matter more to businesses than ever before. They essentially get to decide who is seen by consumers–and who isn’t. So what do they want from the web pages they sort?

Staying Ahead of Google Updates

Google is constantly tweaking its algorithms to deliver the most relevant results to web searchers. Since Google doesn’t usually come out and announce that they are changing their metrics, your page rank might drop suddenly without warning or explanation. With first page search results enjoying the lion’s share of traffic, placing on even the second page of Google listings means that your website is completely overlooked by the vast majority of web users.

The only way to protect your page rank is to constantly stay ahead of Google updates, which can be difficult to do. Previous Google updates have included changes to the way the system treats certain URLs, how local businesses are displayed, and which kinds of tags the system looks for when indexing sites. Some Google updates have targeted websites that use duplicate, redundant, or excessive information, since these pages are inherently less useful to web users. What used to bump your rankings up drastically may now shove them down.

Fortunately, websites like mozcast.com are dedicated to monitoring Google’s web traffic to give people an idea of when changes might be occurring. Beyond watching these sites, here are some tips to protecting your web traffic so that your website can stay viable, no matter what kinds of updates Google throws your way.

Tips for Improving Your Search Ranking

Google’s primary goal is to promote sites that actually provide what searchers are looking for. For this reason, all their updates are geared toward identifying useful content. While other tips and tricks can help you get Google’s attention, the best way to stay on their good side through any update is to provide genuinely useful information.

Provide Value to Searchers

There is a reason that web developers and SEO experts alike tout the phrase “content is king.” When it comes to building a truly successful website, offering genuine, useful content to readers is more important than anything else. This means that instead of simply filling your site with poorly written, irrelevant pieces, focus on your business or website goals and offer content that readers would find helpful.

Make it a priority to use relevant sources, a professional, intelligent tone, and information that web readers aren’t likely to find other places. Before writing content for your website, think carefully about what readers will be looking for, and whether or not the content would be a valuable addition to your website.

Update Material Frequently

One of the things that Google web crawlers look for when they scan for valuable pages is new content, which is why you should never leave your website stagnant. Focus on updating your website frequently, even multiple times a day if possible. Adding sections that focus on current events or new trends can also help, since people are likely to search for that kind of content.

Create Content Without Click-Bait

Google also evaluates your webpage based on the number of ties that it has to other pages, since professional sites and blogs frequently refer people to other helpful resources. In the past, web developers could improve their site ranking by simply stuffing their posts with links to irrelevant webpages, but recent Google updates have cracked down on these kinds of practices. For this reason, avoid click-bait content, such as link stuffing or phrases like “click here for more information!”

Use Alt Tags and Metadata

Contrary to popular belief, the Google algorithm isn’t an all-seeing virtual life form that can reasonably and responsibly detect different kinds of data. For example, if you upload pictures to your website or blog, Google can’t tell what they consist of—unless you include alt tags and metadata. These important pieces of information can be added easily and will improve your page rank, since they give Google a more accurate description of what your page includes.

The Value of Professional SEO Businesses

Unless you have several hours each and every day to take care of your webpage, it can be hard to do everything from monitoring your page ranking to updating that blog. To make things much easier, consider hiring a professional Utah SEO company. Professional SEO companies specialize in learning more about the latest Google updates so that we can design smarter websites for our clients. Contact Infogenix to find out how we can improve your website or blog.

The Next Big Google Search Update?

Years ago, all you needed for a top-listed website was a great URL and loads of content. If you wanted to create a high-ranking cooking website and you happened to snag the URL www.whatsfordinner.com, you didn’t have to worry much about pesky things like Internet traffic. Fast forward to 2016, however, and search ranking is all about the numbers, keywords, and Google’s interpretation of how well your business is doing—which can make it hard to rise in the ranks.

How Google Evaluates Your Webpage

To evaluate the quality, and ultimately the rank, of your website, Google uses complex algorithms to figure out where you should land. Their web crawlers inspect a wide range of different features about your website, including keywords, HTML tags, titles, and most importantly, your website’s sitemap. Unfortunately, even people who cracked the code on Google rankings a few years ago may find their site dead in the water these days. New updates to the Google algorithm are designed to spot things like duplicate content that isn’t useful to readers, bland meta descriptions, and much, much more.

Tip The Scales In Your Favor With SEO

Because all of this Internet mumbo-jumbo can be difficult for business owners to decode, especially since they are likely focusing on, well, running a business, many companies turn to SEO in Utah to improve their search listings. SEO businesses specialize in understanding the latest Google and other search engine updates in order to optimize your site and improve its ranking. Unfortunately, the ever-changing algorithm keeps SEO businesses on their toes.

Recent Google Algorithm Updates That Could Affect You

You would think that a business as vast and influential as Google would come right out and warn businesses before they go changing up their algorithm, but that just doesn’t happen. Because their goal is to improve the relevancy of what users see, the changes Google makes are often complete surprises—which can leave businesses and SEO companies scrambling to figure out what just happened.

Fortunately, some businesses monitor the “traffic” of the Google algorithm to make it easier to tell when something might be happening, and word on the street is that something went down on September 3rd, 2016. Industry experts noticed a giant spike in Google algorithm activity, and shortly after the change was made, Google acknowledged that they did, in fact, make some pretty significant changes to their search engine formula.

Local Pack Ranking Update

One big change that users started to notice on September 3rd was the way that Google was displaying local pack results. Traditionally, when you searched for a business or keyword, Google displayed seven local businesses that might be relevant to your query, along with their address, phone number, and directions to their storefront. This old model was known as the Google “7 pack,” but recently, those seven results were slashed to three. The new Google “3 pack” only displays the top three local hits for any search query, which means that businesses that come in fourth might suffer significant drops in traffic.

Most SEO experts chalk up this recent pack change to Google’s plan to eliminate spammy search results from the web, offering users three results instead of seven to sift through when looking for a local business. If your ranking has suffered because of this change, industry experts suggest registering your business with Google and optimizing your site for the user.

Core Search Update

Another big change that users noticed as of September 3rd was sweeping changes to the order of search rankings, probably due to a core search update performed by Google. Utah SEO experts noticed a huge change in ranking among all verticals, but the update doesn’t seem industry specific.

Quality Content: The Key To Staying Viable

Time and time again, Google has talked about the importance of quality in regards to maintaining your search ranking. As time goes on, they find more and more ways to distinguish helpful, relevant content. As they say in the industry, “content is king,” and there is really no way around it. Experts recommend filling your website with valid, helpful content, using great sources for information, and keeping your website up-to-date by working with SEO professionals. By making your website a priority and rolling with the Google changes, you can keep your business on top.

Why You Need SEO

Would you ignore a customer if they walked into your store? Absolutely not. In fact, you would probably make it a point to answer all of their questions, help them to feel welcome and comfortable, and direct them to new products—without a glimmer of hesitation. Unfortunately, when it comes to those same customers perusing your website in their free time, you might be coming off as less than hospitable.

All too often, business owners neglect their websites, overlook web traffic, and ignore problems that make their company look terrible online—which is why SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is so important. In 2016, businesses live and die on the web, making SEO a crucial expenditure. Here are two reasons you should seek out Utah SEO services today, and how the right company can help your business to flourish.

Search Ranking Matters—A Lot

When you search for your business online, where does your listing pop up amongst your slew of competitors? Although you might feel satisfied to secure that second page listing, it might not be enough to encourage new customers to visit your website. Research has shown that search engine ranking has a powerful role in dictating your opportunities for new traffic, with less than 10% of consumers visiting the second page of Google searches. To put that number into perspective, 90% of web visitors are only interested in the listings that show up on the first page of Google, and won’t even catch a glimpse of your website if it falls on the second page. Your chances for gaining organic traffic dim the further down the list you go, with less than 5% of web visitors venturing onto the third page.

To add insult to injury, even first-page listings aren’t guaranteed prolific traffic. Believe it or not, the first result listed in a Google search enjoys an astounding 34.35% of the page traffic—twice as much as the number two spot on the list. Third place search results average about 11% of the page traffic, with numbers growing increasingly dismal the further down you go. For example, sixth place only warrants about 5% of traffic, and the tenth spot offers a measly 2.71%.

Fortunately, SEO companies are dedicated to improving your search engine ranking, helping you to secure more traffic online. Companies offering SEO in Utah start by evaluating the strength of your website by looking for key indicators that play a role in your overall traffic. For example, since factors like keywords, links, and content on your website flag its importance to Google, SEO businesses can add elements to your website to make it more relevant, dramatically improving your ranking. SEO companies also constantly research Google analytics, practices, and policies to better serve their clients. For example, if Google changes an algorithm that alters the way search rankings are listed, the right SEO company can anticipate the changes and adjust your website so that your ranking remains viable.

Web Users Aren’t Patient

That website that you made with that cool online web builder might look pretty professional, but how are your page rankings? If your website looks nice but doesn’t command the traffic you want, it might be because of your DIY approach to website creation.

Online web builders commonly use complex software and coding to create webpages, which means that most of the time, DIY websites contain a lot more logged information than they should. In addition to signaling to Google that your website is unprofessional and instantly diminishing your search rank, this extra coding can make your website bulky and slow, which can frustrate users. Research has shown that most visitors abandon websites that take longer than 4 seconds to load, which means that a few mistakes on your part could spell disaster online.

To improve search engine rankings, some SEO companies also specialize in web design to create fast, functional pages that Google loves. By building websites from the ground up, SEO companies like Infogenix, can create websites that say all the right things to get Google’s attention—and move you up the list. Web designers can carefully evaluate and tweak different elements that determine relevancy, such as previously linked pages, content tags, page attributes, and the uniqueness of the written content.

With more people than ever before using the web to search for products and services, you can’t afford not to have a team of experts on your side. If your website could use a boost in traffic, contact Infogenix today.

New Head of Google Search

Amit Singhal  former head of Google Search

Some of you may not be familiar with this face, but those that are in the SEO world, this man is as recognizable as Michael Jackson as the king of pop music. His name is Amit Singhal and he has for the past 15 years been the head of Google Search.  Which is a big weight to have on your shoulders for so long, and he has made huge waves in changing the way that search works, and how results are factored into search queries we do on Google every day.  He actually even took the algorithm Larry Page, one of the founders of Google, created that made Google what it is, and improved it. It made Google better and was a key member in making it the powerhouse it is now.

He has been involved with a very hands on approach in all of these improvements and has actually for the last year only done searches through mobile searches on his phone. He has wanted to see just for himself how the algorithm is affecting the now most popular way that we search.  Over 50% of the searches that are now done on Google are done through mobile devices and will continue to move in that direction.  And with these changes, he also was the head of the SEO update known as Hummingbird, which changed the game for a lot of SEO “experts” that had been using poor links and improper tactics to game the Google algorithm. Their methods actually hurt their clients websites, and have been struggling to get back to where they once were since. If you feel you’ve been affected by algorithm updates we can help you fix it.

Who is taking over?

John Giannandrea who has been over the artificial intelligence and machine learning department at Google will be taking over.  It has been something forecasted by SEO’s for about a year now that AI would start to be a part of search, and help computers to learn how to think more like humans rather than a machine.  Which is kind of scary, but also very cool that science fiction is starting to become science fact.  A lot of the information that Google has been using for AI research and development is from mobile searches, and especially those that are voice searches to learn. A great example of what it does was explained by Danny Sullivan of Search Engine Land: “Humans don’t write code to identify all the things that make up what looks like a cat. They write code designed to help machines themselves learn what a cat is.” And that is from the algorithm that John helped build called “RankBrain” which has been a part of Google’s ranking factors for over a year now.

This is an exciting time for search, and a very confusing one at that for businesses who are wanting to show up for the services and products that they provide.  We at Infogenix can help your company improve your SEO and give you real results to increase visibility and rankings.  With this new change in Google’s hierarchy it will be intriguing to see how search will continue to evolve and how it affects businesses online.  If you want to learn more or have any questions for us, please reach out to us and we’ll be happy to talk to you about how Infogenix can help your business.

Jordan Colton

Jordan has worked in SEO for over 5 years on many local, national, and global campaigns. He is also Google Adwords Certified. When he is not working on client's sites he can be found working on various Halloween projects, or watching scary movies.

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