Google announced April 21, Google will use mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal in search results, rewarding websites that are fully optimized for mobile platforms.
Starting on April 21, 2015, Expect More Mobile-Friendly Sites in Google’s Search Results
According to the latest comScore (@comScore) report on smartphone subscriber market share, 184 million people in the United States owned smartphones during the three months ending in January 2015, up 4% since October 2014. With the smartphone market now comprising 75.8% of the total mobile subscriber population, marketers cannot afford to ignore mobile-friendly websites.
In line with the growth of mobile, Google announced on February 26, 2015, via its Webmaster Central Blog, that it would be expanding the use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal:
Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.
To help webmasters create more mobile-friendly sites, Google recommends consulting its helpful guide to creating mobile-friendly sites. Webmasters who want to test a few pages can utilize the Mobile-Friendly Test, while webmasters who want to determine how Googlebot views their entire site can use their Webmaster Tools account “to get a full list of mobile usability issues across [their] site using the Mobile Usability Report.”
Additionally, on February 26, 2015, Google began using information from indexed apps as a factor in ranking for signed-in users who happen to have the app installed. In other words, indexed apps are more likely to be surfaced and displayed in search results following the algorithm’s rollout.
Webmasters who want to enable App Indexing for Google Search can consult this helpful guide.
Mobile Site or Responsive Web Design?
Webmasters who are scrambling to update websites that aren’t mobile-friendly before the algorithm’s rollout would have to decide between creating dedicated mobile sites or implementing responsive web design.
Each option, of course, has its pros and cons. While mobile sites can be customized specifically for mobile users, and is initially more affordable to design and launch, mobile sites also require reoccurring maintenance. Moreover, as mobile devices come in a bewildering assortment of standard resolutions, it is not particularly cost-effective to create separate versions for each resolution.
Responsive web design, on the other hand, is highly flexible as it strives to create an optimal viewing experience for users across a wide range of devices. Unlike dedicated mobile sites, only one site needs to be created and maintained. (Here are Google’s recommended configurations.)
While responsive web design requires a higher upfront investment, it can yield greater ROI as it won’t require as much future maintenance to comply with new browsers.
Are you planning to upgrade your website to make it more mobile-friendly?]]>
Short videos are becoming more and more popular with online adverting. Branded Video Content from like Instgram and vine tell great stories and reflected the message being displayed. People are busy and don’t want to spend a lot of time watching bad videos. So watching short 6 sec or 15 sec videos isn’t a huge time investment. There for people are more likely to view your content.
Helping clients get the content and message across in an entertainment way where viewers will share with friends is what a service we provide. Do gain content, we manage an online video contest where contestants make videos about your product or brand then vote on the best video. Checkout our media kit
If you like to know more about branded content (native ads) please checkout sharethrough.com]]>
What is CSS?
CSS is an important tool in web design will beneficial to your website design. CSS is Cascading Style Sheet and was created to help developers design webpages maintaining company styles. CSS allows a website layout and content to be consistent as wells as separate from the HTML doc.
There are three types of CSS
1. Internal (embed) Styles
2. Inline Styles
3. External Styles
Each of these CSS style formats allows a web page to tell a browser how to render the page. Responsive design is a new term allowing for different screen sizes. Every website has at least one style sheet to the browser default which my instruct a default rendering to a font like Times New Roman.
When looking to hire someone to help with your css needs, look at their web designs work to see if they know your content management style. Most designers will have a portfolio of website they have design. Check if they know responsive design. If you need help with your css design contact us below for a free consultation or call 678-368-3214.]]>
A great business card design right can start a great first impressions for your company. Business Cards needs a great looking logo, beautiful positive colors, nice size text, texture and print professional printing. Remember a creative professional business card design cards will leave give your services the look that people feel conferrable doing business with.
Having a well-designed logo will give a visual and memorable interest for your business. The logo that goes on your cards should be design at 300dpi and nice size. Also, the logo should not be to close the edge where it may get cut off during printing. 1/8 inch is the standard for bleed, but I like 1/4 inch from the edge.
When design a business card I usually design the colors around the logo. If the logo is design with colors that are bright and vibrant, then I try not to use too much to make it too busy. I also like using vector graphics are transparent for corporate design, but for entertainment anything goes. Know that logos must look good in black and white and should be design 1″ x 1″ unless entertainment logo.
I personally think that when design a business card that the phone number needs to be big so that people can read it. Some people may need glasses or just can’t see very will. So making sure that the number is big enough for everyone to see it is my main thing. Another thing is your a marketer or in sales then I think your picture is good on there too.
On the back of the card I like to add my logo, a qr code for videos and a list of services so that people can see everything I do. Some design should just have additional information about your company such as philosophy of the color. Another idea is to leave it blank so you can write down notes when you give the card out.
When your done with the business card then you’ll want to print them right away. I like using 12pt and 14pt for my cards. They look and feel strong. I don’t use UV coasting on the back of my cards so that I can write on the back of the card.
If your looking for a logo, business card, flyer and/or website design, try dpeacockstudios.com for all your design needs.
by Jacqueline Woerner
Social Media Manager
Five years ago, there was no Vine, Instagram or Snapchat. There wasn’t even Pinterest. In fact, in 2009 Facebook had just created the “Like” Button and MySpace was still the second most popular social network.
Since then, social media has come a long way. A recent study states that one quarter of the world’s population uses social media. This means that 1,730,000,000 people are posting, pinning, tweeting, vining, instagraming: Every 60 seconds 20,000 pictures are uploaded on Tumblr; 104,000 pictures are shared on Snapchat; 2,460,000 posts are sent on Facebook. So not only is there a greater diversity of social platforms, there are also more people using them.
Naturally, this phenomenon has greatly affected business: What was considered best practice five years ago is not good enough for marketers in 2014.
Considering the sea of social networks and the millions of people using them, brands nowadays can’t just hop on Facebook: They have to make informed decisions in which networks to invest their financial and personnel resources to achieve the best results. Social media is no longer about following the masses, it’s about following your target audience.
The explosion of networks and users inevitably led to an exponential growth of user data, which opened up endless opportunities but left marketers rather puzzled. A major challenge which arose for companies over the last five years is how to collect, analyse, and interpret the data, and in 2014, companies have still only scratched the tip of the iceberg.
If marketers want to succeed, they need a coherent and engaging content strategy with compelling visuals and authentic stories. Its tough out there. 2014 will see the already competitive environment step it up a notch, improving on last year’s campaigns; take WaterisLife’s #FirstWorldProblems-campaign as an example, or the highly successful Share a Coke with…-campaign.
And while brands were busy creating outstanding campaigns, users themselves became more confident in interacting with big companies, generating both positive and negative buzz.
Mostly due to Twitter, the barriers between powerful corporations and the common user were broken down and we’ve seen numerous examples of the public venting their anger online, causing a lot of pain for individuals and brands.
Retrospectively, some brands faced rough times. While some failed and some succeeded, we’re still all in the same boat, trying to steer social media. And if we want to conquer new territory, we have to stay on top of things and see the bigger picture.
These are the seven trends I see dominating 2014/2015:
It’s been a hot topic for the past couple of months, and we’ve probably all had enough of this buzzword. But 2014 will be the year we professionalise our approach and brands will learn to tell truly captivating and beautifully-crafted stories that centre around the user, and not the product.
If Oreo’s “Dunk in the Dark” tweet during the SuperBowl 2013 taught us one thing, it’s that real-time marketing is the future. Real-time marketing as in monitoring trends on both a large, general and small, audience-targeted scale, every minute of every day.
Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Snapchat – all of these networks foresaw the significance of visual content and reacted accordingly. We will see a sharp rise in pictures, graphics and micro-clips, but not all visual content will be relevant; targeted and sophisticated visuals will dominate the scene.
With a worldwide mobile penetration of 93%, optimised web- and social media sites will become the norm and geo-targeted, contextualised real-time content will become an indispensable component in every digital marketing strategy.
Be prepared to invest more of your budget in social advertising. Social media is a gold mine and with the recent developments (Facebook’s algorithm changes, Twitter’s IPO, the introduction of Instagram ads, promoted pins, and so on) this trend is likely to stay around.
So far, Google Plus is mainly a hub for digital & tech-minded people. But despite Google’s desperate and so far rather doomed attempts to further popularise its social networking service, companies don’t have a choice but to join, if they want to improve their SEO and remain relevant in Search.
Though progress in terms of big data, wearable tech and the Internet of Things pushes the boundaries of people’s perceptions of privacy, anonymous social media will find its place. The only question that remains is in how far people’s need for anonymity can challenge the tech giants dominating the field.
What are your thoughts on the recent developments? Feel free to leave a comment, I’d love to hear your opinion on this topic!
1. Flat UI will continue to grow
2. ‘Mobile first’
Smartphone and tablet usage has skyrocketed in recent years, and is overtaking desktop traffic for many websites. In 2014 mobile devices will continue to dominate, forcing designers to rethink the user experience for smaller screens (they should think about bigger ones too). The need to adapt to a growing mobile-enabled user base can make a company more agile, driving innovation within organisations.
Of course the reality – for most firms – is that ‘mobile first’ doesn’t really apply. It is still very much ‘mobile second’, at least for now, but for those that embrace responsive and / or adaptive design, the ROI can be nothing short of majestic.
3. Yet more scrolling
I explored scrolling websites back in 2012, when it was a relatively nascent trend. It has grown a lot since then. Partly I think it is because scrolling is easy enough to execute, and partly it’s because designers are thinking about mobile and tablet devices, and about how to design with the swipe in mind.
Parallax scrolling, horizontal scrolling, column-based scrolling and infinite scrolling are all things that we’ll probably see more of in 2014 and beyond. There are a few things to be wary of though,particularly around infinite scrolling.
4. More HTML5 goodness
Rather than listening to me bang on about the joys of HTML5 I suggest that you visit Codepen and play around with some of the examples, to see what’s possible. Alternatively, check out a few of these rather creative agency websites, which blend dollops of HTML5 with sprinklings of CSS3 and jQuery.
5. More HTML5 badness
I have already complained at length about the bastardisation of web design and crimes committed against the user experience by people with little restraint. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
For example, if your sexy new website starts off with a one minute wait then you’re doing it wrong, no matter how slick your ‘please wait’ loading icon is. Waiting always sucks, and I’m with Brad Frost: performance is design.
The return of Flash-era showiness and ego over a pristine user experience is something I hope doesn’t happen at any kind of scale.
6. Micro UX
Microscopic attention to detail can really make a website stand out from the crowd. Used sparingly, micro UX effects can help bring a website to life, with menus, transitions and hover states all pleasing the senses.
For example, check out this lovely progress indicator from the Daily Beast.
7. Less text
The web seems to becoming a lot less text-heavy, and some apps and websites have almost no visible text, instead relying on images and icons to convey information to the user.
In some cases this works really well, but in others I think the absolute avoidance of text is unhelpful. For example, the Snapchat homepage, which contains less than 10 words, and requires visitors to watch a video to make sense of things.
Medical dashboard concept
ELI – this kind of display makes sense for portfolio sites
8. Minimalist navigation
Stripped-down navigation is a trend that looks set to grow in popularity. Partly influenced by the need to design condensed navigation for mobile, we’re seeing a lot more focus on icons, rolldowns, and navigation that shrinks as you start to scroll down the page.
9. CSS replaces images
Why use an image as an icon when you can use CSS? Who wouldn’t want a set of lovely CSS checkboxes on their website?
10. Video / moving backgrounds
This is definitely something I think we’ll be seeing a lot more of. The Guardian’s ‘Firestorm‘ provides a good example, and I reckon more brands – rather than content sites – will make the most of dynamic backgrounds in 2014.
The House of Eyewear
11. Richer content experiences
This follows on nicely from Firestorm. Some publishers are moving towards far more engaging online content experiences, which combine text, images, video, interactive functionality, and a fair amount of scrolling.
12. Making the most of one page
More and more sites avoid loading new pages, preferring instead to present additional content on the current page. Lightboxes, overlays, and expanding / repositioned tiles can all reduce the amount of clicks in an average user journey.
Stories by H&M
13. Varied typography
Web fonts are on the rise, designers are favouring bigger font sizes than ever, and mix and matchis proving to be very popular. In addition, responsive typography should become a bigger part of responsive web design.
14. Monochromatic design
Why use three colours when two – and shades thereof – will do? I’ve seen some lovely monochromatic palettes recently…
Then again, why use two colours when the whole rainbow is available? A multicoloured approach doesn’t need to be garish, or distracting, and it seems to work particularly well with flat design.
Here are some very colourful websites and apps for you to take a look at.
16. Cards / tiles
This is something I’ve been meaning to write about in a lot more detail, but for now aim here for an overview of why cards ‘are the future of the web’. I happen to think that they’re the past and present too.
17. Bigger, better imagery
Massive pictures and background images – as opposed to patterns for texture – seem to be increasingly popular, and they certainly look nice on retina displays. Take a look at the recentAwwwards ‘Site Of The Day’ gallery and you’ll see what I mean.
Publishers are also using bigger images more than ever, with mixed results.
18. Fixed position content / navigation
This is when you scroll down and the navigation (or some other content unit) stays on the page. Sometimes the navigation will reduce in height into a narrow bar, or a small icon that can be expanded (as per point eight). This is now becoming fairly commonplace among freshly-designed websites, and let’s stick with Awwwards for an example.