Mobile devices account for around half of the total global web traffic, as per Statista. So, it’s pretty apparent that you are losing out on a lot if you haven’t optimized your website for mobile devices yet.
If you are not serving your potential customers on their chosen device, it’s pretty simple for them to just tap that back button and check out your competition.
And what about your search engine visibility? Well, they don’t really like websites that aren’t mobile-friendly, so they might just drop them down in the search rankings a bit.
But here’s the real question: Does all of that mean you should only care about mobile devices?
Absolutely not—desktop is still winning the race to get potential customers to convert, sitting at 3.7% as per Contentsquare, while mobile traffic hangs around at 2.2%.
So, the right approach is to make your website responsive (adaptable to all screen sizes and resolutions).
Therefore, to help you, we are here to share the best practices and expert advice for making your website more responsive. So, read on.
Help Users Complete Their Objective by Removing Friction
When designing a website, take the mobile-first approach. This will help you figure out how you can help the users with what’s really important for them to do—their primary objective.
As you add features for tablets and then desktop computers, you can think about secondary objectives users might want to do that’ll lead them to the primary one, like user flows and CTAs (calls to action). But keep your main focus on what users want to do first and get rid of stuff that makes it harder for them to achieve their primary objective.
For instance, buying a product might be the primary objective for users. Signing up for a newsletter, which could lead to buying something later, might be less important.
So, it’s a good idea to make buying stuff super easy on mobiles, like having a simple one-page checkout. On desktops, you can have a more detailed checkout process since folks might find it easier to use. This way, you’re making sure users can do what they came to your website for without any unnecessary hurdles.
Optimize for Thumb-Friendly Usage
Creating a user-friendly design that works well on both desktop and mobile devices can be a bit tricky. You see, folks use their desktops with a mouse, but they’re tapping and swiping with their fingers on their mobiles.
Also, the way people hold these devices is different: desktops sit on a table, but mobile phones are held in our hands. These differences matter because they affect how designers whip up elements like buttons and menus that users need to interact with.
For example, on a desktop, it makes sense to have the main menu up on top. But on a mobile UX/UI, it’s better to chuck it down low because it’s easier for your thumb to reach.
For elements that users need to tap on frequently, keep them in the middle of the screen. Your thumb can easily reach the middle, but it’s hard for it to reach the sides and corners.
To ensure users can tap on important links and buttons without much effort, they should be at least as tall as your thumb when holding your phone (44px). If they’re too small, it gets pretty frustrating.
Prioritize Fluid/Adaptive Layouts by Default
Not everyone will be using their desktop browsers in full-screen mode. So, consider not only the responsive breakpoints of current devices but also the things that happen between those breakpoints.
Now, there’s this whole thing about fluid and fixed layouts in responsive design. Responsive breakpoints are great for sorting out how stuff appears on different devices, but make sure that your designs can kind of flow and adjust when the browser window changes size.
Here are some tips to remember when you’re working on designs that can adapt and change:
Use percentage-based measurements for elements so they can adjust smoothly.
Set minimum and maximum width limits to prevent things from getting too cramped or spread out.
Consider using SVG images. They stay sharp when you make them bigger or smaller, unlike JPGs and PNGs, which can get a bit pixelated.
Typography Can Also Be Adaptive
While UX designers typically use pixel units for website design, the modern web introduces a dynamic relationship between points and pixels. This change comes from the various resolutions found on different devices. For example, the iPhone 14 has a high 460 PPI (Pixels Per Inch).
As pixel sizes shrink, we can deliver crisper graphics in the same dimension. Apple calls this “Retina” tech, while Android calls it “HDPI.”
So, what’s the go? Depending on their resolutions, a 16px font size might look bigger or smaller on different devices. To tackle this challenge, web developers often use em units to set font sizes. Em units give us a responsive approach, with 1em being the same as 1 point.
Tools like Zeplin, Sympli, Marvel, and InVision facilitate communication and cooperation between designers and developers. While designers knock up the visual design and developers bring it to life with code, the whole product design workflow thrives on effective teamwork and communication.
Testing from Different Geographical Locations & Across Different Resolutions
Just like analyzing traffic from different devices visiting your website, segment the data by location to align with the user demographics you’re targeting or expecting.
Good VPNs can come in handy for simulating different geographic locations. This can be quite useful for testing your website’s responsiveness across various regions or countries.
While responsive design ensures your website looks and works smoothly on different devices and screen sizes, assessing how it performs in different network conditions and locations is equally crucial.
Consider screen resolutions that are becoming more popular. Even if they’re not very common right now, they might become more popular in the future. This way, designers can create user experiences (UX) that will stay good even if the types of screens people use change.
Create a detailed plan to sort things out right from the get-go in the design journey, especially if you are focused on the mobile-first approach for responsive web design.
You might come across a point where the design needs a bit more tweaking or see something that doesn’t work well on mobile screens.
Finding these issues early on is much better than dealing with them later—ideally before you add any visual aesthetics.
If you need help in boosting your small business site, contact us for responsive web development, and we will help you captivate customers and achieve your goals.
Imagine your business as a finely crafted jigsaw puzzle. Each piece represents a crucial element, intricately designed and strategically placed to create a complete, captivating picture. Now, consider your website as the centerpiece of this puzzle, the one piece that ties everything together. Welcome to the world of web design for business – a captivating journey where creativity meets functionality to shape your online identity. You are convinced that you need a website, but you are grappling with one question: Should I hire a web designer or build the website by myself?
In this digital age, a well-designed website is the cornerstone of your business’s online presence. It’s not just a virtual storefront but a dynamic platform where potential customers, partners, and the world come to engage with your brand. From the initial concept to the final pixel, every step is crucial to creating a website that not only impresses but also converts visitors into loyal customers.
To get that perfect website, you have two options. The first is to build a website yourself using online tools. This is called DIY or do it yourself. You are essentially making the website all by yourself. The other line to take is hiring either a professional web designer or handing over the task to a web design company with a background in creating effective websites. Let’s explore these two routes.
DIY your website
DIYing your website involves several key steps. First, you’ll need to define your website’s purpose and target audience. Next comes the difficult part – selecting a unique online address (domain name) that suits your brand. Now, you have to choose a platform or service to build your site and start crafting its structure and design to match your brand identity. Here, you will be creating and organizing the content, ensuring it’s engaging and relevant to your audience. When you are done, you will have to optimize your website for visibility on the web. Finally, you have to test the site to see if all the elements are working and if it is user-friendly. Once you make it live, you will have to remain on the lookout for any lags or errors and regularly update and maintain the website to keep it fresh and appealing to visitors.
Choosing the right tool to create your website is vital in the whole DIY process, as there are several software and online platforms available for the purpose. However, all of them differ in terms of the scope of their functionality and the complexity of the tool. Some of these website builders don’t require the users to have any coding experience. All codes are built in, and the process is more of a drag-and-drop. There are also tools with inbuilt code editors for more complex and personalized design. Here’s a list of some of the most popular web design tools:
Hiring a web designer
The flip side to this coin is outsourcing the task of website design to a professional web designer or a web development company. To be honest, this has several benefits which are quite enticing. For example, experts bring a wealth of specialized skills to the table. They know what they are dealing with. Throw anything from graphic design to user experience (UX) design to coding or website SEO at them, and they’d have the skills to tackle it and do it fast. In short, they have everything you need for your website to not only look aesthetic but also function seamlessly.
Outsourcing this task also frees up your time and resources. Website design is intense and time-consuming and requires a fair bit of technical know-how. Letting the pros deal with it leaves you with a lot of free time to concentrate on what you do best – running your business or focusing on your job.
So, this tells you that outsourcing could be a smarter choice compared to DIY. But, if you are still iffy between the two, we will delve into more details and compare them based on several factors to give you a clearer perspective.
Should I hire a web designer or DIY the website? – The answer
The first consideration while looking for the answer to “should I hire a web designer or not?” is to consider the cost. The cost of building a site can vary significantly depending on whether you choose between a website builder vs web developer. Building a website on your own could be cost-effective, especially if you have some technical skills, however, there are some fixed expenses you’d have to pay for during the process.
Here’s a cost estimate by Forbes if you are thinking of building the website yourself. You’ll need to purchase a domain name, which typically costs around $10 to $20 per year. Web hosting fees vary widely depending on the provider and the type of hosting (shared, VPS, dedicated). It will range between $30 to $500 per year. The theme and template will be a one-time fee and could cost up to $100. The cost of a web design tool will vary as per the functionality and complexity of your site. Some offer basic features for free, but premium features like themes and plug-ins will cost you money in subscription fees. The average cost could range between $100 and $500 a year.
There is also a cost for a secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate to make sure that your website is safe and secure. This is not optional for businesses, as an SSL certificate is a Google ranking factor. Also, if your business accepts online payments, you need the encryption certificate, as you won’t be able to function without it. The fee for SSL is around $249 a year. But if you are DIYing, look for website builders that offer free SSL certificates. This will save you the additional cost.
Web designers, on the other hand, either charge a per-hour fee or a flat rate for the entire project. Both costs will depend on the designer/ company’s portfolio. Hiring someone with considerable past experience will deliver you a website that will probably not need many reworks. The rate of a professional designer on Upwork ranges between $15–$30 per hour. Hiring a professional web design company might cost you between $5,000 – $30,000, but it would also mean you’ll be putting your work in the hands of pros, so there will be fewer chances of gaffes, and the cost would be totally justified.
Another factor for you to consider when you’re thinking, “should I build my own website or pay someone?” is the time it would take to build the website. The time varies significantly depending on various factors, including the complexity of the project, your level of expertise, and the specific requirements of the website.
Building a website on your own can be a rewarding experience, especially if you have some web development skills. For a basic personal or small business website with minimal customization, it may take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks to get a functional site up and running. This is in situations where you have a clear plan, content ready, and know what you are doing. However, if you’re new to web development or have ambitious design and functionality goals, it can take much longer—several weeks or even months.
When you hire blog designers, web designers, or a web design agency, you’re tapping into their expertise and experience. The time it takes them to deliver a website would be considerably lower as their workflow would be more efficient than a DIY approach.
A basic business website with custom design and features could be up and running within a few weeks. Larger, more complex projects, such as e-commerce websites, may require several months to complete. But remember that professional designers follow a structured workflow, starting with discovery and planning, followed by design, development, testing, and deployment. They can also manage the project timeline more effectively, ensuring the website is delivered on schedule and with high-quality results.
When you’re wondering, “should I hire a web designer or not?” just remember that web design is an extremely complex process that requires certain level of skills and technical knowledge to get through it. Someone who lacks this knowledge will have to rely on their research or learn from trial and error before coming up with a functional website. This consumes a lot of time and might often not yield the desired product.
However, an experienced web designer understands coding languages, content management systems, UI and UX, and web development tools. Professional web development companies have separate resources for each part, thus enabling a more focused approach for each segment, which combines to take the shape of a functional website.
So, while beginners can certainly learn and create websites, there is a significant gap in terms of knowledge, skills, and efficiency compared to professional web designers.
DIY offers a lot of room for customization, and the process of building a website is simpler as website builders offer templates and drag-and-drop tools which can produce decent-looking websites. However, the design may lack finesse, originality, and uniqueness. This is because the generalized nature of these tools and their features are the same for everybody opting to create their own website.
A professional web designer can create a personalized, visually appealing, customized website tailored to your brand. They can ensure that your website not only looks great but also aligns perfectly with your business’s identity and goals.
Moreover, website builder tools usually have limitations when it comes to implementing complex features and optimizing user experience. Your website may lack certain functionalities or responsiveness on various devices. A professional can handle these issues and build websites with advanced features, seamless navigation, and responsive design. They can optimize the user experience, making it easy for visitors to find information, engage with your content, and take desired actions.
In DIY web designs, you are responsible for maintaining and updating your site, which can be time-consuming and may require technical knowledge. Professional web designers and companies offer maintenance packages that keep your website safe, up-to-date, and free of technical issues.
It’s time to sum up our answer to the question, ‘should I hire a web designer?’ While DIY web design can be a cost-effective route for small businesses or personal projects, it often falls short in terms of design quality, functionality, and scalability when compared to a website created by a professional. Hiring an expert web designer or a professional agency can provide you with a polished, high-performing website that efficiently represents your brand and helps you achieve your goals. We hope you found the answer to “Is it better to build your own website or use a website builder?” in this blog. Share your thoughts in the comments about the method you prefer.
When was the last time you clicked on page 2 of Google search results? The answer is probably never, or a very long time ago when you were desperate to find relevant research papers for your college assignment. The point is you’re not alone in this disdain for page 2 results. There are over 8.5 billion searches on Google each day, and less than 1 percent of users click on page 2, according to Backlinko. So, what about your weblinks that are ranking for keywords on page 2? They are within striking distance of finding a position on page 1. This discussion gives us the route to our topic: striking distance keywords.
In simple terms, striking distance keywords are the keywords that a website ranks for between positions 11 and 30. Basically, they are the results on pages after page 1. We have established in the introduction that this ranking is as good as useless. No one is clicking on them.
It’s not all doom and gloom. There’s a silver lining to this dark cloud. See, these keywords are already ranking in search results. They are not just ranking at the ideal position, which results in high CTR on your web pages. But they present an opportunity. Improving an existing thing is far easier than creating something from scratch. This principle fits here, too. Instead of starting SEO from zero and trying to rank a new web page, it is much easier to improve the web page’s ranking for striking distance keywords.
Ways to optimize SEO using striking distance keywords
Finding striking distance keywords is an important aspect of the Search Engine Optimization strategy. This gives you an idea about keywords that are well within your ranking range and have the potential to be moved to the first page. If you are already stressing over how to identify striking distance keywords, worry not. Today’s world is all about ease and automation. There are several tools you can use to identify striking distance keywords.
Google Search Console: Google Search Console provides valuable data on how your website is performing in search results. You can identify keywords that are already bringing some traffic to your site and see which ones are outside the top page.
Ahrefs: Ahrefs is another powerful SEO tool that offers a “Keyword Explorer” feature. Start by logging in to your Ahrefs account and go to the “Keywords Explorer” tool. Enter a keyword to get a list of its variants. This database lists keywords based on several factors, including keyword difficulty (KD), search volume, and clicks. To narrow down the list to striking distance keywords, apply the filter to include only keywords with KD scores that are below your website’s current authority level. These are the keywords you would want to target here.
SEMrush: It offers a keyword research tool that provides insights into KD, search volume, and related keywords. It also has a “Keyword Gap” feature that allows you to compare your website’s keyword performance with competitors. It also gives you an insight into the blended rank of striking distance keywords.
Moz: “Moz Keyword Explorer” is also a valuable resource for finding striking distance keywords. After logging into your Moz account, navigate to the Moz Keyword Explorer tool. In the dashboard, you’ll enter your target keyword or phrase. After entering your target keyword, you’ll be presented with a keyword overview. Scroll down to the “Keyword Suggestions” section. Here, you will have a list of keyword suggestions related to your target keyword. These suggestions can include long-tail keywords, latent semantic indexing (LSI) keywords, synonyms, and variations, basically your striking distance keywords.
Now that you have a list of keywords that you can target, the next stage is to start implementing a strategy to benefit from them.
This includes a number of steps, which vary in terms of work and deliverables, but some of the methods guarantee a sure-shot success at getting dividends of targeting the striking distance keywords. Let’s discuss some of those steps here:
Repurpose old content
Editing old content is always an effective way to improve SEO without putting in much effort. This is also true for striking distance keywords. Here’s how to go about this process step-by-step:
Content gap analysis: Before starting to edit your old content, it is wise to conduct an analysis about what are currently the discussion points in your industry or what topics are being talked over by your peers. This can be done by analyzing the top-ranking content for the striking distance keywords. Now, see if you have any old content that can be repurposed to strike a chord with the more recent and contemporary ideas and notions.
Content audit: The content audit starts with reviewing your existing content, like identifying blog posts, articles, or pages that could potentially be updated or repurposed to target the striking distance keywords you’ve identified. After a thorough review, select the content that is most closely related to the striking distance keywords you want to target. Look for articles or pages that have some existing authority or relevance in your niche.
Update the content: The process of updating the content starts with adding fresh information and removing outdated data, statistics, or references. Once you have done that, the next step is to carefully incorporate your target striking distance keywords into the content. Ensure that the keywords are added naturally and don’t disrupt the flow of the text.
Adjust content length: Expand the content if necessary. Longer, more comprehensive articles tend to perform better in search results. Research by SEMrush showed that articles with 3,000+ words generate the most organic traffic.
Add media and visuals: Add or update images, videos, infographics, or other visuals to make the content more engaging. According to Search Engine Journal, online content that has visuals like videos, images, infographics, and GIFs, on average, gets up to 94% more views.
Improve other page elements
Editing and repurposing old content was only the first step in utilizing striking distance keywords. Before sending your updated content out in the world, there are a few SEO tweaks you might want to make to ensure the content outperforms other links trying to take a shot at the same keywords. So, before publishing the content, use this SEO checklist to ensure all adjustments have been properly made.
Title tag: The title tag plays a role in attracting viewers to click on your page and contribute to a higher CTR. So, it is a no-brainer that your content must have a compelling and concise title that includes the primary keyword.
Meta description: It is the most important nitty-gritty detail that goes a long way in placing your content on the position it deserves. It appears in search engine results just below the page title and provides a brief preview of what the page is about, which tells users – before clicking the link – what it is about. So, add a concise and engaging meta description that includes the primary keyword and provides a summary of the page’s content.
Headings (H1, H2, H3, etc.): Headings or header tags help give structure to your content by providing users with necessary breaks to make sense of the content. Make sure that header tags are part of your content. The H1 tag is generally reserved for the main page title and should include your primary keyword. Subsequent headings (H2, H3, etc.) can be used to break content into sections.
Image optimization: This is another SEO trick that gives a boost to your page’s ranking. If your old content includes images or multimedia, optimize them for SEO. For this, use descriptive file names and alt text that includes your target keywords.
Mobile optimization: Ensure that your repurposed content is mobile-friendly and responsive. Search engines, including Google, give preference to mobile-friendly websites in their rankings.
Page speed: Focus on optimizing the loading speed of your content, as faster-loading pages often perform better in search engine rankings. Compress images, leverage browser caching, and minimize HTTP requests to improve page speed.
Schema markup: Add schema markup to your content, especially if it’s informational or contains structured data. This can boost the appearance of your content in search results and improve click-through rates.
Quality links are SEO fuels as they turbocharge your page’s rankings. This happens because when an authoritative website links to your webpage, it gives a boost to its credibility, and the link automatically improves positioning within the SERP. With the content redone after adding striking distance keywords, you should add both internal and external links to optimize the content for search engines.
The way to go about it is to find a webpage that has the same – or more or less same – content as your new article or blog. Now, find a relevant anchor text on which you could place the link to your targeted page. When creating internal links, use descriptive and relevant anchor text that includes variations of the striking distance keyword and related terms. Avoid generic anchor text like “click here” or “read more.”
Add the internal link to the identified anchor text and ensure that it is inserted in a natural and contextually relevant way. The goal is to provide additional information to the reader while also signaling to search engines that the target page is important for the keyword. For external links, reach out to other sites in your niche and request them to link back to your updated content.
Analyze and repeat
Like everything else in SEO, optimization using striking distance keywords is also a constant process of trial and error. You need to be patient to see the results, continuously track the performance of your repurposed content, and make adjustments as needed. Keep track of the performance of your updated content using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console. It will tell you how much traffic do striking distance and LSI keywords get.
Remember that SEO is an ongoing process, and it may take some time to see significant results. By repurposing old content to target striking distance keywords, you can improve your chances of ranking higher in search engine results and driving more organic traffic to your website.
Asking in 2023 why your business needs a website is like asking in the 80s or 60s why you need a brick-and-mortar store to sell your goods. It’s unfathomable, right? Today, having a business without a website is like throwing a party without sending out invitations. Imagine you have spent a lot of time and energy on bringing together everything for the party, you are chuffed about it, but in reality, no one knows you’re throwing a party. Maybe one of two of your closest people who, from word of mouth, know there’s a party would show up. But what about the wider circle of people? Do they know about the party? No, because you made no effort to tell them about it.
Until a few years ago, a website was an add-on for businesses to expand their consumer base. But now the tides have turned. Now, online presence has become the first step in attracting customers. Why? Because the majority of your consumers are starting their buying journeys online. Very few of them are out there on the streets contemplating which hair conditioner is better. Consider this: According to Zippia, 21% of global retail sales were online as of 2022, and this year, the projection is that 22.3% of total global retail sales will be online. Moreover, 63% of all shopping journeys begin online, irrespective of whether the consumer ends up buying something or not.
How can you look at those numbers and still be iffy about the utility of a website?
Why your business needs a website
What would it take to convince you that your business needs a website to flourish? Would “10 reasons to create a website” be sufficient to convince you? In that case, here are more than 10 reasons why the absence of a website might be standing between your brand being a local name or a global sensation.
A website is a stamp of approval on a business’s credibility. It offers a face to an otherwise faceless business. Since the COVID-19 pandemic altered our lifestyles and shopping behaviors, more people first like to get a feel of the brand online before visiting its physical location.
A well-functioning website is a conversion goldmine that turns passive visitors into active buyers – a survey showed almost 45% of customers are likely to visit a company’s physical location after finding a strong online presence.
Even brands with a strong retail presence have to rely on a website to forge customers’ perceptions. ZARA has physical outlets all over the world, but can you imagine a ZARA without a website? No.
Merely having a website is not enough in today’s day and age. It must be up-to-date, functional, and responsive on both PC and mobile devices. Since most users are accessing websites on smartphones, it is vital to factor it into your web design considerations. Sweor states that 57% of internet users say they won’t suggest or recommend a business with a poorly designed website on mobile.
When we say a website ensures the credibility of a business, we mean it is so vital that it can make or break a brand’s perception. Numbers show that 88% of online customers are less likely to return to a website after a bad experience.
So, not only does a website provide a legitimate front to a business, but it also makes sure that customers find what they are looking for so that they convert into long-term and recurring consumers. A functional website ensures that your business is accessible to a broader audience. It shows you are willing to meet potential customers where they are and provide them with valuable information and services.
The Internet is everyone’s oasis. It has no bounds. There are 5.3 billion internet users in the world as of 2023 – over 65% of the world’s population. It means, you only need a good and viable product and a medium to sell it without worrying about where your next customer will come from because if you’re online, they would come from everywhere. Here’s how a website broadens a brand’s reach to a diverse consumer base:
No time zone barriers: Unlike physical stores or offices with opening and closing hours, a website is accessible 24/7. This means that anyone, regardless of their time zone, can visit your website, learn about your brand, and engage with your content at their convenience. This continuous accessibility breaks down geographical barriers and allows you to reach a global audience around the clock.
Multi-lingual content: A brand cognizant of diverse consumer needs creates a website with content in multiple languages to cater to a global audience. This also answers the question, “Why is content important in a website”. It is because by offering content in multiple languages, brands effectively communicate with speakers of different languages, thus giving the impression that they are committed to making their business more inclusive and aware of cultural sensitivities.
International sales: A brand with global aspirations creates an e-commerce website to serve as a global storefront. By enabling international shipping and multiple payment options, it makes it possible for customers from various countries to purchase products or services. This expands the customer base beyond your local market and into international markets.
Autonomy and customization
The importance of a website is often confused with the reach of social media pages. Businesses ask: “I have Facebook and Instagram pages, why do I need a website?” If you’re also wondering why your business needs a website, let’s first understand one thing: While social media pages can be valuable for businesses to connect with customers, they offer very limited autonomy to businesses compared to a dedicated website. Here are several reasons why a website remains essential for businesses and cannot be entirely replaced by social media pages:
Control and ownership: A website gives you full control and ownership of your online presence. With a website, you dictate the design, content, and functionality. On social media platforms, you’re subject to their rules and algorithms. They can change their policies, limit your reach, or even suspend your account without warning, potentially disrupting your online presence.
Branding and customization: Your website is a canvas for your brand identity. You can customize it as per your branding guidelines and convey a message through branding elements. On a website, you’re the artist of your branding. This is not the case with social media platforms. They offer the same limited options to every user, thus taking out the element of customization, which is vital for brands to stand out.
Comprehensive information: Websites allow you to provide comprehensive information about your business, products, services, and contact details. Social media pages typically have limited space and may not accommodate all the information potential customers need to make informed decisions.
Long-term stability: A website provides long-term stability for your online presence. Social media platforms may rise and fall in popularity, and your audience may shift between platforms. Your website remains a constant anchor in the digital landscape.
Improved Customer Service
A website considerably improves a business’ customer service. Without a website, people have to reach out to the proprietor for any information they might need about the product or service. However, a website will have a FAQ page and product description for customers’ questions.
Do you know among all people who contact a brand or company via social media for customer support, more than 30% expect a response within 30 minutes (according to Brand24), while nearly half expect a response in an hour? Handling this load of customers’ queries manually is a hassle, and as a result, 50% of customer calls go unresolved or require escalation. A business website solves this problem as well. Web designs now come with AI chatbots, which nullify the need to hire humans to reply to customers’ questions. These chatbots can do it far more effectively. The advantage of chatbots is that while humans have limited work hours, the website-integrated assistants are available 24/7 to respond to customers. This has significantly cut the customer-care costs for brands. According to an IBM report, AI-infused virtual agents can cut customer support service fees by as much as 30%.
Data Collection and Analysis
Websites provide in-depth analytics tools that give you insights into your website’s performance, user behavior, and conversion rates. These insights are crucial for refining your marketing strategies and improving user experience. Some of the invaluable insights provided by a website include:
Visitor numbers: Website analytics tools like Google Analytics provide comprehensive data about your website visitors. You can track metrics such as the number of visitors, their geographical locations, devices used, referral sources, and more. This information enables you to understand your audience better and mold your content and marketing strategies accordingly.
User behavior: Website analytics also reveal how visitors interact with your site. You can track which pages are most popular, where visitors spend the most time, and where they tend to drop off. This data helps you identify user preferences, optimize user experience, and make data-driven decisions to improve your website’s performance.
Conversion tracking: Websites allow you to set up conversion tracking, such as e-commerce transactions or specific actions like signing up for a newsletter. By analyzing the data collected from your website, you can map out the customer’s journey. This includes identifying touchpoints, conversion paths, and potential drop-off points. Understanding this journey helps you create a more seamless and persuasive user experience.
Predictive analytics: Over time, as you accumulate data, you can apply predictive analytics to forecast trends and customer behavior. This can assist in making proactive business decisions and anticipating market shifts.
Feedback and surveys: Incorporating feedback forms or surveys on your website allows you to gather direct input from visitors. This qualitative data provides insights into customer satisfaction, pain points, and areas for improvement. It helps you make informed decisions to enhance user experience and overall satisfaction.
API integrations: Websites can connect to external systems and APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) to gather additional data. For example, e-commerce websites might integrate with payment gateways to collect transaction data, which can then be used for sales analysis and financial reporting.
There are many reasons to start an online business, and the cost-effectiveness of a website is one of them. It costs less to set up a website than to build a brick-and-mortar store. It also cuts overhead costs like renting or purchasing physical retail space, human resources, and other bills. It not only cuts these costs but also saves the chunk of money a business would have otherwise spent on Property Insurance and Taxes. According to a breakdown of expenses, the cost of opening a retail store in the US could vary from $10,000 to a few hundred thousand dollars. These include the costs of registering your business, product sourcing, finding and purchasing a retail space, licenses, permits, and insurance and operating costs.
Compare this with the total cost to design an e-commerce website, which ranges from $30 to $30,000 depending on your business needs, as per Statrys. Add to it the domain cost, branding budget, and monthly maintenance fees, you’d still be spending less compared to the expense of a physical retail store. The point here is not to shun the physical retail store altogether and move fully to the website. The idea is to utilize both, which in every way complement each other.
The question to ask here is not why your business needs a website. The question should be what avenues of expansion a website would open for your business. With more potential customers, lower operating costs, and invaluable data to make informed decisions, there should be no doubt about the utility of a website for big and small businesses. It provides you with a credible online face and helps form the customers’ first impression about your brand or service.
The process of designing logos dates back to not decades, but centuries. It started with ancient Egyptians, who used carvings to create, and in a sense, immortalize logos. Fast forward to many decades when innovation, color printing came, and logos became the visually appealing graphic we know them today. Now logos designing is an elaborate work of art that makes use of complex software, which takes care of everything from color to fonts and finally the logo file format to save it.
The process of logo design
The first step of the logo design process is research. It is also the initial moment when clients and designers start sharing ideas, the process which goes on till the last moment until the logo is designed. Here, the research teams gather information from the client to gain a deep understanding of the brand, its values, its industry, and its target audience.
Conceptualization is a crucial stage in the entire process as designers brainstorm and explore various ideas, concepts, and visual directions for the logo.
Design, color, and typography
At this stage, both designers and clients are, to a certain extent, on the same page on how the final logo would turn out. Now, the process of designing varies from designer to designer. Some start with sketching, others directly take their canvas on digital software. Once sketches are in, they are digitally rendered on tools like Adobe Illustrator to create more polished and refined versions of the logo. Here, the choice of colors, typography, and other details are made.
Feedback and changes
This is an interactive stage where the client provides input and suggestions for improvements. The initial logo design is presented to the client for feedback. Designers take this feedback into account and iterate the design to refine it further. After several rounds of feedback and refinement, the logo design is finalized. After the clients are satisfied with the design, the logo is handed over to them for marketing and promotional purposes.
What to consider before choosing a logo file format
A successful logo is simple, memorable, and versatile. It should work well across different mediums – from business cards to billboards, from websites to promotional materials. Designers ensure that the logo retains its impact and clarity at various sizes and in various contexts.
This means you have to choose a logo file format that is perfect for your design and maintains its features when used in various dimensions and across platforms.
Different file formats support different levels of image quality and resolution. For logos, it’s important to maintain high quality and sharpness, especially for printing purposes. The chosen format must preserve the details and clarity of the logo and ensure it looks professional and visually appealing.
Some formats support a wider range of colors and better color accuracy than others. For logos with specific brand colors, using a format that maintains color consistency is crucial to maintaining brand identity.
Logos are used in various sizes – from tiny icons on a website to large banners on billboards. The file format for the logo should allow it to be scaled up or down without any loss of quality.
File formats significantly impact file sharing due to their characteristics and compatibility with different devices, software, and platforms. Choosing the best file format for a logo ensures that the recipient can access and use the logo effectively. It is also important as not all devices and software support every format.
Logo format guide
PNG – Portable network graphic
PNG is a versatile and widely used format for logos in digital contexts, where transparency, image quality, and compatibility are important. It is ideal for logos without a background, icons, symbols, or designs with limited color.
Transparency: PNG supports transparency, allowing logos to have a transparent background. This is particularly useful for placing logos on various backgrounds without a visible white or colored box.
Quality: PNG files retain high image quality, making them suitable for logos with intricate details, gradients, and sharp edges.
Compatibility: PNG is widely supported by most web browsers and design software, making it easy to share and open.
File size: PNG files tend to be larger in size compared to some other formats like JPEG, which could impact loading times, especially for larger images.
Print quality: While PNG can be suitable for small-scale print projects, it might not be the best choice for large-scale print applications due to the potential for larger file sizes and limited color profiles.
Limited color palette: Although PNG supports up to 16 million colors, it might not be the best choice for logos with extremely complex color gradients or a vast range of colors.
SVG – Scalable vector graphic
SVG files are an excellent choice for a text-heavy or vector format logo with a complex or intricate design. It is a vector-based format that allows for scalable and high-quality graphics, making it particularly suitable for logos.
Scalability: SVG files are vector-based, allowing them to be scaled up or down without any loss of quality. This is especially important for logos that need to appear across a wide range of sizes, from tiny icons to large banners.
Responsive web design: SVG is perfect for responsive web design, as it adapts seamlessly to different screen sizes and orientations. Logos in SVG format maintain their visual appeal across various devices and orientations.
Small file size: SVG files are typically smaller in size compared to raster formats like JPEG or PNG, especially for simpler logo designs. This benefits website loading times and reduces data consumption for digital use.
Complexity: Extremely complex or detailed logos with numerous elements might become too large in file size as an SVG. While this can be mitigated to some extent, overly complex designs may still encounter limitations.
Limited design elements: While SVG is great for logos composed of shapes, lines, and text, it may not be the best choice for logos with intricate photographic elements.
Lack of software support: Not all graphic design software supports SVG editing to the same extent as other formats, although this is becoming less of an issue over time.
EPS – Encapsulated postscript
EPS files are widely used in graphic design, especially for logos that need to be used in various professional and print-related contexts. They are vector-based, which means they are resolution-independent and can be scaled without any loss of quality.
Various types of vector file formats: EPS files are vector-based, which means they are resolution-independent and can be scaled to any size without loss of quality. This makes EPS ideal for logos that need to be used across various sizes, from small icons to large banners.
High-quality printing: EPS files are commonly used for professional printing purposes. They provide sharp and clear images, making them suitable for high-quality print materials like brochures, business cards, and billboards.
Editability: EPS files retain the editable vector data of the logo’s elements. This is advantageous for designers who may need to make changes or modifications to the logo without losing quality.
Software compatibility: Some basic software and online platforms may not support EPS files. While professional design software can open EPS files, non-design applications might struggle.
Large file size: EPS files can be larger in size compared to raster formats like JPEG or PNG, which can lead to challenges in storage and sharing, especially for email attachments.
Limited web use: While EPS files can be converted to other formats for web use, they aren’t directly supported by web browsers. For online purposes, other formats like PNG or SVG might be more suitable.
PDF – Portable document format
PDF format offers a balance between quality, versatility, and compatibility. It’s particularly useful when you need to share logos for both print and digital purposes while retaining editability and color accuracy.
Versatility: PDF is a universal file format that can be opened and viewed on various devices and operating systems without the need for specialized software.
Image compression: PDF supports various compression methods, allowing you to balance image quality and file size. You can create PDFs with high-quality images while keeping the file size manageable.
Secure sharing: PDF files can be password protected and encrypted, providing a level of security when sharing sensitive logo designs.
File Size: Depending on the content and compression settings, PDF files can become large, which might impact loading times for digital use.
Complexity: While PDF files can support vector graphics, complex vector elements with gradients and intricate details might not always render as accurately as in original design software.
Editing: While the text remains editable in PDF files, other design elements might not be as easily editable or modifiable as they would be in their original design software.
PSD – Photoshop Document
PSD file formats are for logos which are a blend of intricate visual elements and require the advanced editing capabilities that Adobe Photoshop offers. PSD files are preferred by designers as they preserve complex compositions and raster images while enabling detailed adjustments.
Layered editing: PSD files allow you to save different elements of the logo on separate layers. This makes it easy to edit and modify individual parts of the logo without affecting the rest.
Raster and vector elements: PSD files support both raster (pixel-based) and vector elements. This can be helpful if your logo combines both types of elements, allowing you to work with different design components within a single file.
Non-destructive editing: PSD files support non-destructive editing through adjustment layers and smart objects. This means you can make changes without permanently altering the original image data.
Compatibility: PSD files are specific to Adobe Photoshop, which means that recipients who don’t have access to this software might have difficulty opening or editing the logo.
File size: PSD files can become quite large, especially when containing high-resolution images and multiple layers. Large file sizes can make sharing and transferring the logo more challenging.
Editing limitations: While PSD files can be opened in some other graphic design software, not all editing capabilities translate seamlessly. Some effects and features specific to Photoshop might not be editable in other programs.
JPG/JPEG – Joint Photographic Experts Group
JPEG/JPG is suitable for photographs and types of image files with complex color gradients. However, when it comes to logos, JPEG is not typically the ideal choice due to its compression method, which can lead to a loss of quality.
File size: JPEG files are known for their efficient compression, which results in relatively small file sizes. This makes them suitable for web use and situations where file size matters, such as email attachments.
Widely supported: JPEG is a universally supported format. Virtually all devices, software, and platforms can open and display JPEG files without any compatibility issues.
Web usage: For logos that will primarily be displayed on websites and digital platforms, JPEG can be suitable. Web environments often use compression techniques anyway, so using a compressed format like JPEG aligns well with the online display.
Compression: JPEG compression discards some image data to achieve smaller file sizes. This can result in a loss of image quality, especially for logos with sharp edges, text, and solid colors.
Lack of transparency: JPEG does not support transparency. If your logo needs to be placed on different backgrounds without a visible background color, JPEG might not be suitable.
Quality degradation: Repeatedly resizing a JPEG logo can lead to a degradation of quality due to the lossy compression. Enlarging a JPEG logo beyond its original dimensions can result in a loss of sharpness and clarity.
Multiple factors affect the quality and display of a logo, and choosing the correct logo file format is one of them. The right format ensures the logo appears just as the client envisaged it. We hope this guide will help you in understanding various file formats and how they preserve a logo’s qualities.
It is said that ‘Imitation is the best form of flattery’. This is only true if you’re copying the style of your favorite actor or if you’re copying the good work ethic of your elder sister. But, not all imitations flatter people. If you copy a classmate’s assignment in school and submit it as yours, it will hardly flatter that person. Similarly, plagiarism in graphic design – like if you copy someone’s art – will never ever flatter the creator. Instead, you will be called out on social media and, worse, embroiled in legal proceedings.
Schemes of logo design plagiarism
A logo helps a brand differentiate itself from competitors. When a logo is copied, the copied brand gains an unfair advantage by leveraging the benefits that might come with mass recognition of the original. Logo design plagiarism is nothing new. From amateur designers to multinational design firms, they all have been guilty of this theft – the extent of the theft varies, but the practice is more rife than you think. There are many ways to rip off someone’s work and present it as yours, but three ways that are common include:
Logo plagiarism can vary from being a complete rip-off to a copy that shares an uncanny resemblance to your logo. Sometimes, artists claim they only take inspiration from a piece of art, but in reality, the artist might have taken more than “just inspiration” in creating something that resembles eerily with your patented creation.
For example, in 2019, rapper Lil Nas X released a sneaker design in collaboration with MSCHF, an art collective. It had all the rights features, but one thing stuck out like a luminescent light in the dark – Nike’s Swoosh logo. Nike sued Lil Naz for trademark infringement, and the two parties settled, with MSCHF agreeing to recall the sneakers and offer refunds to buyers.
Reflections or similarities
There is a very slim line between inspiration vs plagiarism, and sometimes brands have logos that aren’t a complete rip off of someone else’s work but still share a lot of similarities. It could be anything from the typography to color or even the style, while the intention wouldn’t be to copy the logo, the end product turns out to be something that forces consumers to put both pictures side by side and point out similarities. Take this example of Airbnb and Automation Anywhere.
Airbnb officially launched a new logo in 2014. The iconic A, which we all instantly recognize today was created after a lot of thought. But there was just one problem. The logo was very similar to the one being used by a – then – small startup Automation Anywhere. It got to a point where both companies released a joint statement.
In early 2014 both Airbnb and Automation Anywhere began use of new logos that, by coincidence, have similar designs. Airbnb and Automation Anywhere are working cooperatively to address this issue, and Automation Anywhere is in the process of transitioning to a new logo design that is not similar to the Airbnb logo.
Well, the matter was resolved. Airbnb still uses its iconic A, but Automation Anywhere has a slightly different A now.
If you create a product that turns into something big, you get the right to call dibs on it. It’s yours now. You own it in the sense that none of your rivals can lay claim to that product/ marking in the future. For example, if today you invent a teleportation machine, and name it ‘Telepast’, it will be your trademark. Now no other teleportation device can use this name.
Trademarks lead to certain disputes as well because whatever you are creating, someone else has done it in the past, and some will do it in the future. So, labeling a trademark becomes trickier. Take the example of Apple. Do you know Apple is actually Apple Inc? And did you know before Steve Jobs founded Apple, there existed another company named Apple? Yes, The Beatles had already been running a multimedia company called Apple Corps Ltd. There was a dispute when Apple, the iPhone company, tried trademarking the use of the “Apple” name and logo. After multiple rounds of legal battles, the two companies reached a final agreement in 2007.
Legal standing for plagiarism in graphic design
Laws governing logo plagiarism, also known as trademark infringement or logo copying, can vary significantly from country to country. Trademark laws are generally designed to protect the rights of brand owners and prevent confusion among consumers.
In the United States, logo plagiarism is primarily addressed through trademark law, which aims to protect the rights of brand owners and prevent confusion among consumers. The main legislation governing trademark rights and protection is the Lanham Act (also known as the Trademark Act of 1946). Some of the key aspects of the law are:
Trademark owners can register their logos with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It provides certain benefits, such as a presumption of ownership and the exclusive right to use the trademark nationwide in connection with the goods or services for which it’s registered. A trademark owner can take legal action against someone using a similar or identical logo if it’s likely to confuse consumers about the source of the goods or services.
To establish a trademark infringement claim, the owner of the original logo needs to demonstrate that the alleged infringing logo is causing or is likely to cause consumer confusion. This might involve showing that consumers could mistakenly believe that the products or services associated with the infringing logo are connected to the trademark owner.
If a trademark owner successfully proves infringement, they can seek various remedies, including:
Injunctive relief: A law court can issue an injunction to stop the infringing use of the logo.
Damages: The trademark owner can claim monetary damages, which might include the defendant’s profits from the infringing use or actual damages suffered by the trademark owner.
Destruction of infringing goods: In some cases, the court can order the destruction of goods bearing the infringing logo.
How logo plagiarism hurts brands
Brands and companies stand to lose a lot in the case of logo design plagiarism. From the loss of credibility to a financial hit, the copy of a company’s branding elements can significantly impact its business. Here are some ways businesses stand to lose in case of logo plagiarism.
Damage to brand identity
Logo plagiarism can have a significant impact on a brand’s identity and reputation. A brand’s logo is not just a visual representation, it’s a symbol of the brand’s values and personality and is its overall identity. When another entity copies or plagiarizes a logo, several damaging consequences can occur.
Any case of logo plagiarism brings with it a set of legal consequences. It depends on whether you are the victim in the situation or not. In case you are aggrieved by intellectual property theft, you can take a number of actions to not only stop the use of your graphic elements but also recover the cost of any damage caused to your brand’s reputation or finances.
The brand can send a cease-and-desist letter to the infringing party, commanding that they stop using the copied logo and take corrective actions. The company can also file a trademark infringement lawsuit against the party that copied the logo. If the court determines that infringement has occurred, it can order the infringing party to stop using the copied logo.
The owner may seek monetary damages to compensate for any financial harm caused by the infringement. Damages can include the brand owner’s actual losses and the infringing party’s profits gained from the infringement, and even the legal fee accrued by the victim on legal proceedings.
Loss of trust and credibility
Logo plagiarism tarnishes the reputation of brands and results in the loss of customer loyalty by creating confusion and diminishing trust. Consumers may become confused by the similarity of logos, questioning the authenticity of products or services. This confusion erodes consumer trust as the genuine brand’s reputation is jeopardized by association with potentially lower-quality imitations.
Logo plagiarism can seriously generate negative publicity for brands and leads to a slump in consumer perception at a time when this perception is a valued asset for any brand to stay relevant and popular. According to research, 88 percent of consumers say authenticity is a key factor when deciding what brands they like and support. So clearly, in this day and age, no brand can afford to take a hit on its reputation.
But the logo of a popular brand on any shoddy product can seriously dent consumer trust and cause significant harm to the business. This puts doubts in consumers’ minds about the brand’s commitment to delivering genuine, reliable products or services. This negative attention can damage the brand’s reputation and public image, leading consumers to view the brand in a negative light.
Lost business opportunities
The losses incurred by a brand victim of plagiarism in design are short-term and long-term, while in the immediate aftermath, the brand might see a hit in reputation and financial losses, in the long-term future, it leads to a permanent loss of credibility and missed business opportunities that would have otherwise resulted in accelerated growth.
Plagiarism in graphic design leads to confusion among consumers about the authenticity and credibility of products or services. Consumers may hesitate to engage with a brand if they are uncertain about its legitimacy, leading to a loss of potential customers and business opportunities. Moreover, the decision to fight it out in court can also lead to legal costs and financial liabilities, diverting a huge pool of resources that could have otherwise gone into R&D or growth.
Another way logo plagiarism stifles a brand’s growth is by breaking the bond of trust. Brands spend a large amount of time cultivating trust with their business partners and customers, and any loss of reputation can break down this mutual trust which then takes a lot of rebuilding and results in loss of potential business opportunities.
Like a human cell is the building block of life, a URL is the most basic element of the entire online world. And just like everything else on today’s internet, URLs are also optimized. After all, if a URL appears at the top of searches, the website is seen. URL optimization includes several strategies, including the best permalink structure for SEO.
A permalink, short for permanent link, is a URL that points to a particular web page or resource on the internet. Basically, it is www.yourwebsite.com/category/product or www.youwesbite.com/blog/title. Permalinks are permanent because it remains accessible even if the content of the page is moved within the website’s structure.
Permalinks are everywhere. From blogging platforms, e-commerce websites, news websites, etc. They are your way into all nooks and crannies of your website. They are there to ensure no content gets lost in the intricate web structure. Here are some examples to understand the structure of a permalink.
Blog Post Permalink: https://www.referenceblog.com/my-blog-post
Wikipedia Entry Permalink: https://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/topic-title
If you ask me what the best permalink structure for SEO is, I won’t be able to answer it. The reason: there are many CMS out there, and each one of them has a different method to determine a permalink, provided you don’t customize it according to your liking.
Here’s the breakdown for major CMS on how they curate a permalink.
WordPress uses a combination of the post title, post slug, and post type to generate a permalink. The post title is the main title of the post, the post slug is a short, descriptive name for the post, and the post type is the “category” or “article.” But WordPress also allows you to customize permalink through its built-in permalink settings. You can define the permalink structure based on the post title, post ID, category, or a combination of these elements. It generates SEO-friendly permalinks automatically based on your chosen structure.
WooCommerce uses the post name by default, but this can be customized in the settings. For example, if you have a post called “My Blog Post,” the permalink would be “my-blog-post.”
Wix uses a combination of the page title and the URL slug, which can be customized in the settings. The URL slug can be up to 64 characters long and can include letters, numbers, and hyphens. For example, if you have a page called “My Pet Dog,” created in 2023, the URL slug might be “my-pet-dog-2023.”
Magento uses the product Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) by default, but this can be customized in the settings.
But all these CMS also offer in-built tools to customize permalinks for a uniform structure. You can modify these settings to create a structure of a URL the way you like.
Here are some of the best practices for best permalink structure for SEO
Permalinks can be created in a number of styles. You can add category titles, keywords, dates, years, numbers, etc. The important thing is that whatever style you choose, apply it to all pages so all permalinks have a consistent structure. Here are some examples of that:
Say you want to use the post title. Then the permalink will be www.example.com/post-title. If you want to add a category, then example.com/category/post-title. For post ID: www.example.com/post-id. Permalinks based on years look like this: www.example.com/year/post-title. You can also label pages numerically so that the permalink becomes something like this: www.example.com/category/numeric-id.
There are obvious benefits to maintaining a consistent style for your permalinks. It makes it easier for users to remember and bookmark your pages. If all of your pages have the same format, users will be able to easily find them again in the future.
Search engine-friendly URLs are the ones with a consistent style. It helps search engines index your pages more effectively as crawlers use the permalinks to understand the page’s content. It also improves the SEO as consistent permalink styles make it easier for people to find your pages.
A consistent style also makes your website more presentable and professional. A consistent permalink style is one of the small details that can make a big difference in the overall look and feel of your website.
Slugs are short, URL-friendly versions of the page title used to omit unnecessary words or characters. They help create concise and descriptive permalinks optimized for both users and search engines.
Adding slugs improves the readability of URLs by removing unnecessary characters or words from the permalink. They can:
make URLs more user-friendly and easier to remember
organize content on a website by making it easier to find specific pages
help to track the performance of individual pages on a website
Permalinks with slugs also help users easily share your content or create backlinks to your webpage. A concise and descriptive slug makes it easier for them to reference and link to the specific page.
Slugs can follow a variety of styles. They should be short and easy to remember. The URL slug best practices involve avoiding the use of special characters or spaces in slugs and using hyphens instead of underscores to separate the words.
The process of adding a slug to permalinks can vary depending on your CMS.
In WordPress, a permalink can be modified to add a slug by editing the post or page URL directly. When creating or editing a post, locate the Permalink or URL field, and modify the text to include your desired slug. WordPress will automatically generate a slug based on the post title, but you can customize it as needed.
In Magento, you can add slug in permalinks in the admin panel. From the admin panel, go to Stores > Configuration > Catalog > Search Engine Optimization. From there, you can enable URL rewrites and customize the URL Key field to include the desired slug.
In Wix, permalinks are automatically generated based on the page title. While you cannot directly modify the permalink structure, you can customize the page title to include the desired slug.
Adding keywords is a bit of an extension of adding slugs, but they are more specific and give a considerable boost to your search engine rankings for specific keywords.
Like your web content, targeted keywords can be added to your permalink. They can be the primary keywords or key phrases relevant to the content. Incorporate these keywords into the permalink to give search engines a clear signal about the page’s topic. For example, if your target keyword is “best lawn mower,” your permalink could be myonlinestore.com/best-lawn-mower.
Some of the best practices to add keywords in the permalink are:
place keywords closer to the beginning of the permalink
avoid keyword stuffing and maintain a natural and readable structure
Although Google’s maximum character limit is 255 characters, the average permalinks still stand at 32 characters. The reason is that even though the search engine giant allows you to add over 250 characters, it cannot display all of them on the SERP. If you exceed the maximum character limit, Google will truncate your permalink and add ellipsis (…) to the end or in the middle.
Not only from the SEO point of view, long and complex URLs are also a turnoff for humans. They are impossible to remember, and honestly, URLs with numerous parameters, query strings, or unnecessary characters look damn ugly.
Don’t add redundant words
Permalinks are like the headline of a newspaper, you will rarely find any article, preposition, and helping verbs in them. Reason? These words eat up valuable character limits. Articles, prepositions, pronouns, and verbs are called ‘stop words’ and should be removed from permalinks. Repetitive Keywords and unnecessary descriptors should also not be a part of permalinks. No one wants a black-suede-leather-jacket-with-black-shoulder-patch-in-medium-size. Use black-suede-leather-jacket instead.
Here are some examples of permalinks with redundant words that have been improved to create the best SEO URL structure.
Adding hyphens in the permalink is important because it makes the permalink more readable and easier to remember. It also helps to prevent confusion with other similar links. Additionally, hyphens can help to improve the SEO of your website by making your links more relevant to search engines.
Hyphens are also a preferred separator in permalinks as they improve overall readability. Other characters like underscores, spaces, or special characters in permalinks can lead to readability issues, and potential misinterpretation, and may also not be search engine friendly.
Tools to create the best permalink structure for SEO
If this all seems like a lot of work to you, don’t worry. You don’t have to do it all by yourself. There are built-in permalink modifiers in CMS like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, etc. They allow you to customize permalinks. These tools offer settings to define the permalink structure, automatically generate permalinks based on post titles, and allow you to edit or customize the generated permalinks.
There are also plugins for CMS like Yoast SEO, Rank Math, SEOPress, The SEO Framework, Squirrly SEO, or All in One SEO Pack. These plugins provide advanced permalink settings and optimization features, allowing you to customize permalinks, add keywords, and ensure SEO best practices.
For more complex and customized permalinks, you may need the services of a web developer to cater to your custom requirements. Working with web developers or utilizing programming languages like PHP, you can create custom permalink structures tailored to your needs and integrate them into your website.
These are the tips to create the best permalink structure for SEO. They can help you ensure that all your web pages are optimized for search engines as well as for the users. A simple URL is an attractive sight that looks clean in the URL box and improves the users overall experience.
Time and again, it has been proved that a logo design can turn the tables for any company. A carefully designed logo not only identifies a brand but also becomes the identity of a company. You may not think of it as much, but you immediately think of Nike whenever you see a big check sign.
This is how powerful a logo is. Anyways, we are not going to indulge in jotting down the pros of a logo. This article is all about the evolution of one of the most infamous online movie streaming platforms. Yes! We certainly are talking about Netflix.
We will go as far as to say that Netflix does not need any introduction. We all familiar with the streaming service, and some of us are quite addicted to it.
But did you know Netflix had a very different logo at first from the big, bold one in red you see today? If we are diving that far into history, the streaming service was not even named Netflix at first. Instead, it was named Kibble by the creators Marc and Reed.
Since then, the two masterminds behind this brilliant idea have not looked back, and Netflix itself has gone through quite some changes.
Let’s have a look at the changes in the Netflix logo over the years.
The First One
In the year 1997, when Netflix was born, the logo was completely different from what we see today. When we say different, it means the logo had a different approach and an entire colour scheme.
The logo was hues of purple and violet, with a film wrapped around the text “Netflix” separating “Net” from the “Flix”. This logo was used until 2000.
The 360O Change
In 2000, the designers took a 360O change. They changed the logo entirely, and instead of using lighter tones such as purple and violet, this time bold colours were used.
A red background carrying the bold letters in white font with a black outline was used. The red colour in the background was supposed to make the logo pop out. And honestly, it did a pretty good job at popping out and getting stuck in our heads.
But the story doesn’t end here. There have been further changes in the Netflix logo. Let’s find out.
The One We See Today
The logo with a red background, white font, and bold black outline was changed in 2014. This time, the red background was changed to white, and the font was red.
The designers decided to keep the red colour as it had already become the brand identity of Netflix. This also the logo we see today on our screens.
But the creativity of designers at Netflix does not stop here. To immortalise the logo in the heads of audience, a big bright N is flashed on the screen before the start of movies and series. This is another way of marking Netflix’s identity. Because to recognise the logo of Netflix, we don’t have to see the whole logo.
We see the flashy red N on-screen and bam, our mind immediately recognises it. This is how powerful a logo is when done right.
I remember when I started doing Search Engine Optimization, life was simple. There was only SEO for Google rankings. We all were happy. Now you look around, and there is a separate optimization guide for everything – YouTube SEO, PlayStore SEO, SEO for mobile apps, and even an Amazon SEO guide.
You knew it, didn’t you, that whatever you see on Amazon is there for a reason. It is a science. It is tailored for every user so that they keep spending their money. The listings are optimized to such a level that customers don’t even have to type what they’re looking for. You want a couch? How about these curtains that go with it? Or this rug that will uplift the look of your entire room? And just like that, the cart is full, and now the customers are hanging between guilt and fulfillment.
It’s not only the buyers who throng Amazon for convenience, for sellers, too, this is a land of opportunity. The place makes over $500 billion in a year. The pie is humongous for every seller to have an ample share. Amazon’s 300 million active users, plus the 2.2 billion who visit Amazon.com each month, are always looking for things to buy. Now if your products jump in front of them, then Boom! Jackpot.
Selling on Amazon
To bring your product up on Amazon, you first need to understand how the website lists products. Amazon uses a unique algorithm to determine the ranking of products in the search results. The latest iteration is the A10 algorithm. With this update, the customer’s convenience, which has always been Amazon’s priority, has become more paramount.
Research shows that the A10 algorithm takes customers straight to their desired products, bypassing any recommended or other search products in the process. It promotes sellers who are bringing new users to the site. The company also rewards sellers whose products generate more impressions or views and have high click-through and conversion rates.
Every product on the website must be relevant to what people want. Only then does it stands a chance to appear above the millions of other products in the same category. This doesn’t only mean adding keywords to the title. There are a host of other factors like product description, photography, categorization, conversion rate, reviews, and, most importantly, pricing.
The complete Amazon SEO guide
In this blog, we will delve deep into how to optimize these metrics and also let you in on a few secret tools that are not explored by many sellers.
The title, description, and details
Any product listing is nothing without its accompanying details. They are the first, and the most important piece of your entire Amazon SEO strategy. This part includes optimization of your titles and product descriptions.
Titles are the most basic element of a good Amazon listing. It’s common sense, right? After all, buyers, search for a product by putting up terms in the search box. How closely those terms relate to your products’ title will decide the placement of your product. The title must define your product’s brand, key features, and benefits.
Here’s a snapshot of the first result which appears when I search for ‘Sephora Eyeliner’
Look at the title. It has the brand’s name, the quantity, and a key feature, ‘liquid intense ink liner’.
Title length and composition
The recipe to craft the perfect title starts with staying within the character limit – 200, including spaces.
The first five words of the title are the most important, as Amazon uses them for your product’s URL. The link for the above Sephora eyeliner is amazon.com/Sephora-Collection-Eyeliner-Liquide-Intenese. Amazon’s other guidelines for ideal titles are:
Don’t use special characters
Don’t mention rewards like “free shipping” or “discount”
Don’t use ALL CAPS, and capitalize each word of the title
Use the number ‘2’ instead of two
Don’t include the merchant’s name
Keywords are central to every Amazon SEO guide. The easiest way to do keyword research is by looking at other sellers’ listings and seeing what words they are targeting.
However, a more elaborate way to go about it is by benefitting from Amazon’s ample resources. One of them is the Amazon ASIN Lookup Tool. It is a hub of business intelligence to provide sellers with the data to improve their sales. ASIN, or Amazon Standard Identification Number, is a unique identifier of 10 letters and/or numbers for a product assigned by Amazon.com. No two products have the same ASIN
In this tool, sellers can enter the ASIN number of their products and get a list of high search volume and trending keywords in Amazon search ranking.
There are also several other tools for looking for ideal keywords to improve your Amazon ranking. My favorite among them is the Keyword Tool. It is a paid tool, but the in-depth information it provides makes every penny worth it. Other tools are Google Keyword Planner, Ahref’s keyword tool, SellerApp, and Keyword Inspector.
Bullet points and description
Ideal bullet points are clear, concise, and within the limit of 1000 characters. Relevant keywords can also be added here to optimize the product listing. Use the first bullet point to highlight the USP of your product. Second and third, to address questions that might be on people’s minds. Fourth, to state any offer, discount, or gift, and fifth, for telling the customers why buying from you will be convenient.
Search terms are there to stop you from keyword stuffing in the title. They are part of a product’s description to improve its discoverability. Search terms are optional, however, adding them can give a serious boost to your products.
Here, you can add generic words and synonyms for your product. For example, if you are selling electronic products, you can add synonyms like appliances or related terms like light bulbs, energy-efficient products, etc., in your search terms.
Product listings can also be optimized using Brand Content or A+ Content. Sellers registered with Amazon Brand Registry can benefit from Enhanced Brand Content (EBC) by using engaging multimedia, detailed product descriptions, and storytelling for a richer shopping experience.
According to Amazon statistics, more than two-thirds (68%) of Amazon sellers operate with profit margins higher than 10%. This is despite the fact that Amazon only allows the most competitive and the lowest price to sell on the platform.
Varun Soni, Amazon’s Product Manager for Pricing, said that Amazon ranking system considers a price as competitive if it is equal to or less than the product’s price offered by reputable retailers outside Amazon.
This price must include the cost of:
Additional Product Cost for FBM – warehousing and shipping to customers
Amazon Fees – commission and payment wiring
Amazon Fees for FBA – storage, customer returns
Miscellaneous Expenses – transportation, digital tools, employees
Amazon wants its customers to pay the lowest possible price, and it only offers its coveted Buy Box to sellers who help it achieve the goal. Buy Box is a place where your ‘Add to Cart’ and ‘Buy Now’ buttons appear. For sellers who don’t offer competitive prices, Amazon, under their listing, simply shows a list of sellers who are offering a lower price for the same product. So, if your price is not the lowest, you are not even in the game.
How to set competitive prices
Amazon sends out an email every time a price is uncompetitive. The email contains all ASINs that are not competitively priced. It means none of these products will have the Buy Box. Sellers will have to modify these prices to sell their products.
In Amazon Seller Centre, there is a Pricing Health Page under the Pricing tab. It has all the information a seller needs to competitively price their goods. It also mentions all products which have a higher price than other sellers.
Another tool is automating pricing. It allows retailers to update pricing in a fast and simpler way. Sellers only need to add their products to the tool, and their prices will be updated as soon as other sellers or retailers outside Amazon modify their prices. The tool is fully customizable, and sellers can set the limit for their listing’s lowest possible price.
Amazon also offers APIs for those who don’t frequently log into their Seller Central account. The Amazon Marketplace Web Service (MWS) APIs enable sellers to set prices through third-party repricing tools. It sends a notification anytime a price is changed for the top 20 offers on a particular ASIN.
One thing is that AWS APIs will not be available from March 31, 2024. So, if you are using MWS API, you must move to Selling Partner API (SP-API) to keep benefiting from the tool.
Use Amazon PPC to Rank Higher
According to experts, Amazon is giving more importance to PPC in its new A10 algorithm, allowing for more visibility and a better chance to convert into a sale. These products appear with a ‘Sponsored’ tag when a customer enters a related term in the search box and also in the competitor’s listings.
For example, in the below example, we typed the term ‘fit bit’ in the search box. In the listing, these products appeared with Sponsored tag, meaning that they have been advertised for the keyword. These ads are ideal to appear among the top listings for a particular keyword. In the image below, all listings
Amazon will only run your ads for the exact keyword. It is very precise and target oriented. Here, you can use your keyword research for title optimization. The trick is to find the most high-volume keywords that are also closely linked to your product.
Amazon will show a list of price ranges for all keywords. You have to bid for each keyword. The higher the bid is, the more chance a seller has to appear on the first search page.
No Amazon SEO guide is complete without image optimization. A good image is a make or break for buyers in deciding whether to buy or dump a product. Images are so important for products that Amazon has a set of guidelines and even style guides for sellers.
An optimized product image is one that matches the product title, and the product must cover at least 85% of the image. The image’s file names must include the product identifier or ASIN number. Amazon strictly forbids text, borders, logos, mannequins, insets, and watermarks in images.
For every listing, a seller can upload one main product image and up to eight supporting images. The supporting images can also include a video. Text and product features can be added to supporting images.
Get Positive Reviews
Every online seller is hungry for reviews. Numbers show that approximately 95% of consumers read product reviews before buying on Amazon. Sellers can leverage this important tool to improve their authenticity. Thus it becomes vital when doing SEO for Amazon products.
Brands enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry can use the in-built tool to review, track and reply to reviews. Sellers can log in to their accounts and hover over the Brands tab. Click on Build Your Brand and select Customer Reviews. This will display all reviews on your products in chronological order.
There are also ways to seek customer reviews. For example, SellerApp has a Chrome extension that allows sellers to ask customers for reviews.
We hope this Amazon SEO guide would have helped you as the competition is stiff, and rules tight. There are tons of things that go into a brand listing that appears on the first page or even the first product. It is a process that never stops because Amazon never stops innovating. To sell more, your listings must be fully optimized not only in accordance with the customer’s needs but also with algorithm requirements. This will be decided whether you’re among the top sellers or just one of the millions already on the platform.