Welcome to the official website of "Landing Page Optimization: The Definitive Guide to Testing and Tuning for Conversions" by Tim Ash. This best-selling book covers the strategy and tactics of optimizing for conversions. It examines the skill-sets necessary, as well as the internal company support needed to make conversion testing a success.

LPO wiley coverPaperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Wiley Press - Sybex (January 29, 2008)
ISBN-10: 0470174625
ISBN-13: 978-047017462

Book Description

How much money are you losing because of poor landing page design? In this comprehensive step-by-step guide you will learn all of the skills necessary to dramatically improve your bottom line:

  • Identify mission critical landing pages & their true economic value
  • Gain insight on customer decisions & make your pages friction-free
  • Uncover problems with your page & decide what elements to test
  • Understand the power & limitations of common tuning approaches
  • Develop an action plan & get buy-in from all key players
  • Avoid common real-world pitfalls that can sabotage your test

Improving the Success Rate of Landing Pages

What Is a Landing Page?

Sometimes called a lead capture page, a landing page is the one that appears when a viewer click on a ad or a search engine link. The page displays content that is intended to cause an action on the part of the viewer and turn them into a customer.

If lots of people are visiting the landing page, but not completing the desired action. Then the page is not being successful. The purpose of the page is to convince the visitor to stay and either fill out a form, buy something, sign up for a newsletter, etc.

What Are Conversions?

A conversion is when the potential customer has taken the desired action on the landing page. In order for the viewer to complete the task given to them, the designer needs to make it as easy as possible – and as clear as possible – so the customer understands what is required of them.

Anatomy of a Successful Landing PageMake Landing Pages More Effective

Define the conversion activity. Make sure that there is an explicit action for the viewer to take. If the purpose of the page is to sell a product. Then there needs to be a clear “buy now” button.

Get rid of extra elements that are not connected to the purpose of the page. This is not a homepage so there should only be one message: the purpose of the landing page.

Keep the design between the landing page and the advertisement the same.The best way to let visitors know they have navigated to the correct site is to use the same creative elements from the ad.

Don’t promote to other areas of the site. Landing pages don’t want visitors to wander. By providing links to other areas of the website, the designer is encouraging the visitor to leave the page, most likely before the desired action is completed.

Lead the visitor to the place of conversion.Use all the elements of the designer’s toolbox (but don’t overdo it and distract the visitor) to lead the eye and the mouse to the conversion button.

Don’t misspell words or use incorrect grammar.First impressions are everything, and poor grammar can lessen the credibility of the site.

Convey trust and respect through testimonials and visible customer support. Not all viewers are going to be familiar with the brand the designer is selling, so it is critical to help the potential customer feel comfortable, especially if they are being asked to give personal information.

Defining Public Relations in the 21st Century

In 1978 at the inaugural World Assembly of Public Relations Associations, PR was defined as “the art and social science of analyzing trends, predicting their consequences, counseling organizational leaders, and implementing planned programs of action, which will serve both the organization and the public interest.”

It was a somewhat convoluted definition of PR and may be responsible, in part, for the difficulty the public relations industry has had in defining itself for decades. Today, a more widely accepted definition of PR is as a communication function that seeks “to foster and maintain mutually beneficial relationships between an organization and its target publics.”

What do Public Relations Practitioners Do?

PR practitioners help their clients to reach their target audience positively and often utilize the media to provide a third-party endorsement for a product, service, individual, business or organization.

PR helps you get noticed by your target marketWho Needs Public Relations?

Any individual, business or organization (party) that relies on public support for continued operation should implement some form of PR activity. Public relations will help to build reliable and consistent branding by working with a party to refine its public image, develop key messages, seek open communication with target publics, identify opportunities to solidify relationships and adapt as the market changes.

How do Public Relations Practitioners Reach Target Public?

Traditionally, PR practitioners help parties to shape news or feature-style story and sell it into the media using their knowledge of news values and the inner workings of the media. This tactic may include developing a media release, media alert, informative documents and spokesperson profiles; holding a media conference or event; media training spokespeople; and liaising with journalists.

PR practitioners also write speeches; letters; award, grant and tender submissions; website copy and printed materials.

How is the Public Relations Industry Evolving?

As media consumption moves away from newspapers and magazines to online and digital formats, PR practitioners are becoming very familiar with the benefits of social media in building relationships between parties and target market.

Many PR practitioners will recommend that traditional PR tactics be complemented newer ones such as social media presence and smartphone-compatible platforms.

What is the Difference Between Public Relations and Advertising?

In the eyes of the consumer, PR tends to carry more credibility than advertising because PR introduces a third-party – the media – to vouch for a product, service or party. While it is well known that all advertising space is paid for by the company behind it, many people don’t recognize when a PR company was the driving force behind a news story. However, even when people can identify a news story as the result of public relations activities, they also know that the story must have some merit for the media to cover it.

Public relations is a dynamic industry and an effective means of communication that many experts believe is yet to reach its full potential. Nonetheless, most large corporations and many smaller ones have embraced the PR function and are much better for it as they can continually gauge the attitudes of their target publics, adapt to them and build stronger, more sustainable relationships and better business.

Conversion Derived from Building Relationships with Your Customer

The goal of any website is to draw in visitors. But that is only the beginning. A one-shot visitor is just that, one shot at a sale or conversion. You have to connect and convert. When a visitor is one that returns, again and again, they are more than a visitor, they become a customer, and the customer has the potential to bring real returns.

The question then becomes what makes this person return? Of course, there is the content that the site provides to bring value that will make them want to return. But it can be more than that. The thing that will make someone want to return again and again is the sense of belonging. That is where the relationship begins. The connection that is established serves as a bridge between the customer and the site.

Trust is a factor for online successIt Takes Trust

The first thing in building a relationship is the building of trust. Too many sites collect email addresses and information with the intent to sell this information to others for profit. This sold information is then used as lists and possibly as spam. As a reputable site, this must be a no-brainer philosophy and is the first building block of trust is a privacy policy that information will never be sold, traded, or otherwise compromised and strictly enforced.

Ongoing Information Exchange

Most customers want to be informed about updated information on a topic of interest, new products on the market, and in general, news. What they do not want is the feeling of being spammed. Even in the best environments, there is an overabundance of information, and if the customer feels bombarded, it will not build a good foundation.

It is best if the site offers many options for an update. In general, email is the most common, but it can be the most derisive form of communications if not used correctly. If the site offers daily updates, it should also provide a weekly compilation so that the user can get the same information, but just once a week, or even once a month.

Keep Commitments

When using email for communication, keep the commitments that have been generated. If the site says it will send updates once a day, don’t send out more than that. If it means that it will send tips to make the user’s life easier, don’t send sales pitches. Nothing will anger a customer than to be taken advantage of.

Please, Feed the Customer

Better yet is to use RSS feeds. They are not as invasive, and the user can check on updates at their will. Freebies like eBooks or exclusive discounts when they signup for your newsletters could establish long-term connections that can be valuable. From an internet marketing standpoint, they give the site more latitude to provide more information, and they bestow the customer better ways filter the data they have to deal with.

Be True to Your Customer

To build an internet marketing program based on building relationships takes not only time but trust. It takes upholding a commitment to serving the customer and putting their needs first. It takes a lot to build trust and doesn’t entail a lot of effort to tear it down.

By putting the customer first and taking great care in monitoring that the site does not compromise this trust, the user will not only show the respect by returning, but also by recommending your landing page to others that they feel would benefit from the website.

SEO – Why People are So Afraid of It?

Every business could do with SEO…

Do you own a business? How often has someone come up to you with the suggestion for learning SEO or Search Engine Optimization that you can implement for developing an online business strategy? In the modern context, people first look at the Internet either on their computers or smartphones for locating a business or service.

Digital marketing resultsYou probably agree that you need a website and it needs some work put into it before it starts showing up on the search engines. You dedicate some time towards this – possibly outsource it to a reliable agency – and come up with a basic website to run for your business. There are pre-defined templates that you can use with which to get your website up and running.

…but few choose to tread that path

At the end of the day, however, the results fail to materialize. Though you have put in a lot of effort, turns out all of it was just not enough to make your website optimized. Now that’s something you understand, and you never wanted to deal with the SEO matter in the first place.

Your peers would have told you that it takes a lot of time, has too much technicality, and is not assured of giving significant outcomes. Why spend so much interest on something that does not guarantee results?

This happens to be the feeling of many small and medium business owners. They are told about the necessity of SEO but are found hesitating when it comes to hitting the start button or hiring an agency to do the job for them.

Why is everyone so scared?

Here is a look at some SEO aspects that make people scared and hesitant about embracing this asset.

  • People think it’s a magic formula

Most people think that SEO is a magic potion that will bring immediate profits and online success which is the root of their frustration and disappointment. SEO will help bring profits to your business, but the returns won’t be immediate.

Waiting for results to happen overnightBusinesses give a lot of importance to measurable results from strategies. Since SEO gives a slow ROI, many business owners develop the opinion that it is insignificant and relegate it to the backburner.

A person new to SEO puts in a lot of money and effort but is left frustrated by the results, or lack of it. They become reluctant to get started on an SEO campaign and stick to it for the long run. The right strategy will eventually bring results, but you cannot expect things to be immediate.

SEO makes an invaluable strategy that should be taken more seriously with a logical outlook rather than magical beliefs.

  • You have to wait, wait, and wait!

Newcomers believe SEO to be an online marketing strategy that has many parts to it and is long and complicated. True, numerous factors need to be considered while optimizing a website, but you need not to do all of it at the same time.

People shy away from SEO thinking it is expensive and time-consuming as soon as they get the feeling that all the effort has been in vain. Be patient, that’s the most important mantra.

SEO involves various tasks and responsibilities that can be delegated to professional digital marketing agencies. They will take care of the online side of things for you while you focus on running and managing your business.

  • There is too much technicality

People have a general perception that SEO is complicated and very technical that only web developers or computing geeks can handle. They feel they lack the qualification and don’t put in the effort to learn it. SEO has many elements that almost anyone can take care of – you don’t need a technical background or computer science degree for it.

It is easy to learn the basic nuances of SEO and can be done in a few hours. For a new and young company, the focus should be more on implementing the fundamental, simple SEO tactics and elements. The more technical aspects can be looked after by a specialized agency, and you can put all your queries in front of them.

  • You can get heavily punished and attract severe penalties

It cannot be denied that Google has put in place various penalties for poor SEO implementation. If you are doing it on your own, you would have read a lot about various foolproof techniques for getting good rankings but later realize that Google will red-flag that plan.

This is why every strategy should be based on the industry’s best practices and why many businesses turn to implementing agencies that have a good track record in this regard. The good SEO agency from NYC has the expertise, proven record, and sound knowledge of the right metrics that are needed to be used to create a complete SEO plan for your business.

You need to pay closer attention to their specifications to simplify everything, instead of getting scared of the technicalities of the SEO world.

Before you hire professional consultants, you must know what exactly will they be doing. Ask every little detail and don’t settle for the generic answers, instead, ask questions specific to your queries and about their strategies to be confident of the entire process.

  • It gives your brand an image of being gimmicky

SEO had a reputation of being a cheap trick for cheating the search engine and buying more online traffic, but things have since changed. It aims to provide valuable business information to the user and not merely drive traffic.

If you are wary that using such formula methods will create a negative brand image, you are wrong. It’s all about making yourself visible and easy to find for the potential customers.

  • You get a lot of traffic, but they don’t bring business

The keyword is a term that often floats around while doing SEO and if you are implementing on your own, running into the vast world of keywords can be overwhelming. Keyword analytics will help narrow down your focus, but you still don’t know what to choose. Look at the keywords that are most searched for and the buyer persona you intend to target.

What are they searching for online? The better analysis will help you find patterns and make it easier for you to identify the potential target audience who would be willing to convert into your paying customers.

To conclude, SEO is just complex business!

Nobody knows how many factors are considered while ranking websites and this gives a very complex image to SEO to start with. Is it possible for a single human being to tackle all these complex factors or should the focus be on a single ranking aspect that could hold the key to bringing success?

Most business owners are happy to learn about and implement only a few basic strategies for SEO which is a good place to start but won’t help you realize its full potential.

Many also complained about a lack of funds to implement a whole-hog strategy. There is no denying that SEO takes a lot of time, effort, and money to execute. However, people need to get rid of the misconceptions and implement an effective strategy for their business that will eventually help them realize the benefits.

Google and the Monopoly of Internet Search

A monopoly is a company which, according to Dictionary.com, has “exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market, or a control that makes possible the manipulation of prices.”

First, one must understand that Google made $5.7 billion dollars in net revenue and $6.63 billion in profit for the entire year. Their primary business, for those uninitiated, is charging “per click” for those links on the right-hand side of a search under the heading “Sponsored Links.” Advertisers pay between $0.10 to $20 or more for a single “click” which represents a qualified web site visitor.

Google is accused of monopolizing internet searchConsider this: Google receives 72% of all Internet searches. And, Google shows ads for almost half of Internet searches performed on its site.

Is Google a monopoly? Of course not. Is Microsoft a monopoly? Of course not. But they both are near-monopolies.

A monopoly has relevance when it pertains to a few things for consumers and businesses alike:

  • The lack of any choice in choosing a vendor for a particular service
  • The consolidation of power into the hands of a single entity with whom we must trust

So, given the above, where does Google stand?

For example, say I am a small business owner who wishes to attract customers to my web store. I would consider doing pay-per-click marketing and have a choice of Google AdWords, or Bing AdCenter, and some smaller players.

Given a limited budget and limited time to manage my advertising, which one would you choose? 72% of the market? Or 17%?

Now, let’s change the scenario and we’re a large company which wants to attract more customers: Would you NOT advertise on Google?

I think the “choices” above (or lack thereof) shows that Google is a near monopoly. In short, you have to advertise on Google to play in their space, because they are the dominant player in the market. You have no choice.

Now consider the volume of online traffic that Google “sees” through its servers:

  • Google sees 72% of internet searches out there
  • Any site which uses AdSense (which are those “Ads by Google”), including this site
  • Any site which uses their free analytics (Google Analytics)
  • Any web browser with the Google toolbar installed sends every page view back to Google
  • Any web browser which uses “auto-suggestions” in the search box sends the keys you type into that box to Google

Given the above: Can you estimate how much of the total internet traffic that passes through the Googleplex in Mountain View, California?

Some will state that Google can be trusted to be on the receiving end of so much browsing information (and personal information that is typed into a search engine). Would you want some engineer at Google to know that you search for “Yeast Infection?” How about “Divorce Lawyer?”

The question is not whether we can trust Google, it’s whether it’s a good thing to have so much power and information in the hands of a single company.

Finally, like other “near-monopolies” out there, when a company has 6 billion dollars in profit each year, it puts them in a position where they can buy other companies to cement their position further, making it almost impossible for them to have any reasonable competition. Google has recently purchased the number one video site on the internet, YouTube, the number one banner advertisement firm, DoubleClick.

Of course, calling Google a monopoly or near-monopoly does not discount what Google has accomplished, nor does it blame them for performing well. Google has exceptional technology, fast and comprehensive search, and they offer a myriad of tools which make many people’s lives easier and better.

This debate is also not about what the government should do about a monopoly or near-monopoly.

However, like the checks and balances of the United States Federal Government, it is important to have anti-trust laws which protect consumers and businesses alike when a company is in a position of power.

Realizing that Social Media is an Infrastructure

In a client marketing planning meeting at corporate HQ, we discussed Facebook strategy. The question came up on whether it was better to pursue a top-down content strategy when the client said:

About 50 percent of our local franchisees have already set up their own Facebook pages.

Be Seen on Social MediaFor better or worse, digital marketers need to stop looking at social media as simply a new marketing channel. It’s a communications infrastructure that marketers are in charge of R&D for. Corporate presences on Facebook fall flat most of all because they’re not offering the equivalent of your local branch. Corporate occurrences are too broad and provide no way for people at the company and people in the local community to connect; though they can offer a hub-like approach to the local presences.

It’s time to look at social media for what it is: the new phone system, but better.

Social media allows marketers to make campaigns personal. Using writing, design, and programming, marketers are able to affect a local one-to-one discourse introducing consumers to the people at your brand that can help them in that context most.

To many, that sounds like a sales channel, which it is. But it’s also eminently savable, trackable, and providing marketers with the rough brush strokes of the perceptions, realities, and time parameters held by your audience. Social media is already informing all your content for display, SEO, SEM, creative, and sales efforts. The question is: are you listening?

Making Your Landing Page Stand Out from the Rest

Everyone selling a product or service on the Internet should know what a landing page is and how to use it effectively. A good landing page could very well triple and quadruple the number of quality visitors to your website, where, of course, you have at least the opportunity to make new customers.

What makes a landing page outstanding? Well, add the word “static” into the title, and you have a good start. The static text will repeat keywords as it summarizes the description of your product or service. Remember, a valid landing page is narrow in scope, and very specific. You want to saturate the page with relevant content to the major search engines will recognize the page as being superior in importance for those keywords, and give it a higher placement in the search results.

Testing for a better landing page conversionYou also want the Internet visitor to “land” exactly where they wanted to land – on a page that is rich in content to what they are searching for, undiluted by irrelevant information and self-promotion.

Internet marketing opens the entire world to you at minimal cost. It does the same for your competitor so you must be at the top of your game to stand out. Here’s what you need to accomplish on the first visit:

  1. Capture and keep the interest of a web page visitor within the first 15 seconds.
  2. Compel the visitor to take some action.
  3. Offer something of real value for free – delivered to their email.

You can only do so much with a new visitor. If you have a product that is typically sold in Retail Stores and on Internet Stores, then a landing page specific to a category (toy cars, toy dolls, etc.) will likely increase those sales to a much higher level than otherwise could be realized. More expensive items (real cars, real estate, etc.) require that you develop trust and be considered somewhat of an expert on those items. The landing page establishes just that.

You will want to create some landing pages for each specialty or market segment so that a customer or client can always “land” according to their desired destination. If they want to land in New York, then they are arriving on a page that is specific to New York and has all the relevant information they need just for New York. You’re the New York expert.

The keyword there is New York. It could have been any other word, product, or description – the thing to remember is that a landing page has static text so specific that it allows you to repeat these keywords in context, resulting in higher search rankings, and also the more top notch in the mind of your unique Internet visitor.

This is why the right landing page (with good static text) is so vital to Internet marketing.

Why Outsourcing Your Business Accounting Can Save Your Sanity

Whether you’re a startup company as a “solopreneur” or a team of between five and ten, you need to keep track of your financial status. Large companies or multinationals are not spared from doing this because all business organizations are required to report their financial statements in compliance with government regulations.

Accounting entails more than getting your tax forms rightBut the real reason for keeping tabs of finance is for you to monitor how your business is doing, and how it profits from its assets and how it handles its obligations to stakeholders, owners, investors, and financiers. An accounting system takes care of this. It is advisable for a young company or a startup to outsource your accounting needs to allow you to focus on your business operations. Other SMBs are likewise doing the same.

But why outsource? Outsourcing accounting to professional providers will help you focus on your core business processes and lessen the stress on worrying how to go about managing your business finance, what accounting system to use, complying with the Internal Revenue agency, and how to record and accurately report your financial standing correctly. Why remote? Nowadays, many businesses utilize third-party providers of Outsourced Accounting Services for Startups and SMBs | tempCFO which may be holding offices outside yours. A remote one is a good idea.

Let’s first distinguish the meaning of outsourcing and remote. Outsourcing is the delegation of functions to another party that is not connected to the company. Usually, an outsourced provider is remote in the sense that the party operates outside the business premises or holds office elsewhere. Remote, however, as in the case of remote workers, are not necessarily outsources. Remote workers could be employees or contractual workers of the company operating from their offices or their homes.

Flexible working spaces

Innovations in office spaces have made outsourcing much easier nowadays, such as with shared working spaces. This is particularly practical especially when your business is still on the lookout for the best location in terms of accessibility, size, or ambience. It could also be a solution or alternative to expensive office rentals or when the construction of offices entails a lot of expenses, and your budget is limited.

Manual accounting procedures can be tediousChanging accounting trends

Innovation and current trends in information technology including cloud technology and accounting software have made life easier. It applies to every industry regardless of size and location. Innovation includes outsourcing activities like accounting outsourcing made more accessible and within reach. Accounting software such as Netsuite, Quickbooks, and the like have all evolved and have the capability to gather real-time financial data from different offices or locations. Thus, outsourcing has become within reach and more efficient. Outsourcing works in synergy with your business, plus you get to familiarize yourself with the latest in accounting software which your provider may allow you to use at a lower cost, if not for free. It gives you an overview of the software without having to purchase it outright, and waste money spending on training your team needs to learn it.

Lower expenses

Outsourced accounting providers operate at a lesser cost for the company because there is no overhead cost. The company spends only on the specific professional services or functions and not on the operational cost such as electricity and business space. Moreover, outsourced accounting service providers have a high degree of professionalism since they manage various clients. They have to maintain their integrity otherwise they will lose their clients. Also, the burden of getting a lousy hire employee is lessened.

Skilled accountants can be difficult to find in your locationIf local talents are not available

In cases where there are insufficient or non-qualified workers from the same region where your business operates, you can employ the services of remote workers who have expert knowledge of your industry or have specialist familiarity with your business culture. There are likewise providers of human resources that you may also opt for. They can lessen the burden of selecting the right candidate for your company as they have years of experience in handling various workers who may or may not be working remotely.

Better efficiency and professionalism

Certain tasks, such as check processing or payroll processing, eat so much time. Outsourcing takes away the headache and the hassles associated with this. Outsourced providers have a more efficient system that on-time payments of salaries reduce your workers’ stress and keep them motivated. Also, there are decreased chances of fraud or illegal activities since the providers are accountable for each transaction that they are responsible for.

There are many benefits to hiring remote workers and outsourcing your accounting to third-party professional providers. Moreover, your accounting provider could give you better advice regarding updates on business laws or the latest trend. Instead of thinking of it as a burden, try to see it as an efficient solution to your business woes. Various companies and organizations have outsourced their business needs and are working harmoniously without hurting their business pocket.

Why is Cheap Website Hosting Service Not Worth It?

You want to make the most of your investment when you are managing a startup. You want to cut costs but still be able to do the strategies that you want to do for your business. Some of the most prominent business expenses are for administrative, operational, and marketing aspects, among others.

In the past, businesses had to pay for slots in newspapers, magazines, yellow pages, and on the radio and TV, to advertise their brand and new products. These were costly but prove to effective marketing strategies.

Reliable hosting service means better uptime that benefits SEOIn this digital age, however, the website is king when it comes to advertising your business online. Your site is similar to your company business card. People get to judge you based on what you present to them, and your business card or website is the first thing that they see. It used to be the case that having a website was not compulsory among businesses. However, today, it is a must to have a site if you want to succeed in your enterprise.

Many website-building platforms make it easy for anyone to start their sites. Due to the ease of use, even business owners can launch their company’s website. And because many owners want to save money, they either do the job or do the web building in-house. There are now many themes to choose from, so even if you are not an expert, you can build professional-looking sites in minutes.

But even with the rise of DIY sites, website professionals are still here to stay. For one, there are lots of site features that amateurs do not know about, such as configuring the site to be SEO-optimized and putting in a high level of security features on the site. These are not readily inputted in website-building platforms, so technical know-how is a must.

It can be hard to choose a professional because there are lots of options to choose from. You must not only rely on gimmicks and fancy advertisements. Check the professional’s portfolio to check if this person or company can deliver the results that you want. Go with companies that tend to under-promise but over-deliver.

You don’t only want to save with how the website is built; but also, with how your site is hosted. There are now so many hosting companies to choose from, with varying costs across the board. You may think, “Why is there a big difference with the prices?” When you look at the advertisements, you will see that the services offered are almost the same. The difference goes with the storage capacity and general features such as free email hosting and a fast-loading site.

A cheap website hosting service may sound alluring, but there are hidden costs in the low price. For one, there is the high possibility of system breakdowns as mentioned in reviews of those who tried these affordable hosting services. Privacy is also not ensured since the site’s privacy certificates are not transparent. One feature that is not robust in cheap website hosting services is the email system, with reports of emails and attachments failing to get sent. There is also the danger of site content being lost, where lost data cannot be retrieved anymore.

A cheap website hosting service may appear affordable, but there are hidden costs that you do not know about. These hidden fees can be costly to your business, and you don’t want to undermine your company’s success just because of wanting to get a budget service for your site’s hosting.

Online Marketing Innovations of 2017

The year 2017 has brought in a lot of changes for online marketing. Search engines define and put forward the rules of what’s accepted and what should be trusted online, so the rules always change. If you want to be successful with your business, then you must keep in tide with the trends in online marketing.

2017 SEO strategiesThe marketing strategies we’ve seen for 2017 are either new or improvements of former tactics. Some are poised to stay for a while because of their success rates, while other tactics had ended before they even got famous. You may think, why do some strategies work while others do not?

One of the reasons why some tactics work is because they have a vision that looks far ahead. These do not only attempt to make your brand viral for now, but also for the future. Don’t get me wrong. These strategies are challenging to put into work. However, it is worth it if we’re talking long-term.

Some other tactics are way easier to pull through but are unsustainable. Therefore, you end up spending more on these tactics that would have been more effective if you chose the strategies that won’t work in the short-term but will, eventually, in the future.

What are the critical lessons for 2017? Authenticity is essential, and search engines are recognizing that now. In the past, fake likes, reviews, and links may have been useful, but search engines are now smarter than ever before. It is good news for everyone who wants more quality with what they see online.

What lessons have the year 2017 taught us about online marketing? Here are some of them:

1. You need a mobile site

It used to be optional to have a mobile version of your site. It is not the case anymore because it is now expected for every business owning a website to have both desktop and mobile versions of their sites. Many people now check for information on their phones or tablets, and usually, PCs and laptops are used for work. So, if you want to have a bigger audience, then you must publish an excellent mobile site for your brand.

Sticking to the best business practices2. Sponsored stories are now frowned upon

Hidden affiliate links on articles were accepted before by search engines. There’s been a crackdown on these this year, and it is great for everyone because it means this type of tacky behavior is not tolerated anymore. Search engines now make it compulsory for all websites to inform the audience adequately should there be a sponsor of the post.

The year 2017 has taught a lot of lessons for SEO marketing. The key takeaway? To succeed online, you need to be authentic and genuine. Search engines will always find a way to put holes on your faults. But if you remain faithful to the best business practices, then surely, your efforts will be rewarded.

Now is the time to revamp your site if you have any of these mistakes. It is not too late given that there are three more weeks before we welcome 2018.

Tim Ash’s Seven Deadly Landing Page Sins

Tim Ash, from Site Tuners gave a great presentation on landing page optimization. Tim’s presentation entitled, “The Seven Deadly Landing Page Sins” was so good we decided to pass along the information.

landing page sins

Here’s the list:

  1. Unclear Call To Action: Make sure your call to action is obvious. Clear, concise calls to action need to be the most prominent part of any landing page.
  2. Too Many Choices: Keep the number of links on your landing page to a minimum. Remember, we want the reader to click on the link that’s associated with the call to action, not everywhere else
  3. Asking For Too Much Information: Minimize the barrier to entry by not trying to capture all of the reader’s information. Quiz: How much info do we ask for to download TMC’s Digital Marketing eBook?
  4. Too Much Text: The marketing strategy behind your landing should always be for people to act. Muddling the page up with a lot of text is a great way to lose your audience.
  5. Not Keeping Your Promises: This one is simple; deliver on your call to action. What ever it says you are going to do, you must do.
  6. Visual Distractions: Whenever possible use a minimalist design. Tim remarked, “keep your designers on a short leash.” Makes sense to me.
  7. Lack of Trust: There is a good possibility that people don’t click because they don’t trust you. Publish who your company works with and what associations you are involved in prominently. Place logos or symbols of trust above the fold whenever possible.

Really, when you look down this list – it’s rather simple. You don’t need to be rocket scientist to optimize your landing page. Follow these steps and stay away from the Seven Deadly Landing Page Sins and watch your conversion rates increase.