Issue 014 March – Grow Smart Growth Bites

Welcome to the latest issue of the Grow Smart Growth Bites, your monthly newsletter dedicated to business growth and development. In this issue:

How To Know If Your SEO Is Working
Make Your Emails Mobile Ready

How To Know If Your SEO Is Working

cd-newsletter-article1-mar-14Many are of the opinion that SEO is one of the “dark arts”, and as such we can never really know what’s going on with our efforts to make inroads with our SEO campaigns.

While there are many unscrupulous SEO practitioners who would be only too happy if that were true, there are some ways we can look behind the curtain and determine whether or not our SEO efforts are paying off. Let’s look at a few of these.

What to look for under the hood!

There are a few key metrics that you need to look at to get a good view whether or not your SEO is working for you or against you.

  • Getting search visitors? – One key factor is whether or not you’re actually getting a significant portion of your traffic from the search engines. And not just for your company name, either. You need to be acquiring visitors for key search terms as well.
  • Is your site converting? – It’s all well and good to get loads of visitors to your site, but if they aren’t the right kind of visitors, in other words people who are predisposed to have an interest in your products or services, then you have little hope of converting them to sales. Low conversion rates often point to the wrong search phrases being sought after.
  • Are your pages ranking? – Of course your pages need to rank well for your chosen keywords, and a sure sign your SEO is weak is when you are unable to find your pages anywhere even after optimization. Your data will show you a variety of reasons why you may be having trouble ranking.

Tools that are helpful

It’s not always easy to find the data you need to make determinations of this sort. Fortunately, there are many tools available to help, some free and others paid, that do a bang-up job of giving you more data than you can safely digest!

Here are ten that will do the job!

  1. Google Analytics – Free or paid, lots of raw data
  2. SproutSocial – An awesome free option to get you started
  3. Raven Tools – Great tools and a comprehensive view of SEO
  4. – Good for keywords and competition
  5. Open Site Explorer – A versatile tool, good for competitive analysis
  6. SEO PowerSuite – A great tool you can have on your desktop
  7. – The best automated tool for monitoring backlinks
  8. MajesticSEO – A well-rounded too also good for backlinks
  9. Ahrefs – Possibly the best link data available
  10. Positionly – Easy to use and understand

Getting the data is one thing; acting upon it is the next step in making sure you are getting your money’s worth when it comes to SEO!

Could your business be generating more customers online?

Contact us today for your free marketing assessment!

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Make Your Emails Mobile Ready

cd-newsletter-article2-mar-14With the most recent Holiday shopping season not even a blur in the rear-view mirror yet, we are seeing data that has quantified the performance of mobile during the buying frenzy.

Retailers benefited from a monstrous 55 percent of sales emanating from a mobile device, and a full 25 percent of those from smartphones, according to eConsultancy. While these are UK numbers, they represent the apparent willingness for consumers to abandon their reticence toward purchasing from a mobile device.

What’s more, with more than 51 percent of emails being opened on a mobile device, it’s very strong evidence that if your emails are not optimized for mobile, you are definitely missing the boat!

How to make sure your emails are mobile-ready!

Here are some great tips for making sure that your emails are not only rendering well on a mobile device, but that they convert as well!

  • Keep it brief! – Since so many of our emails are opened by users out and about, keeping them brief and to the point is mandatory! A large block of text will, at best, be saved for later on a bigger screen, which is of course exactly the opposite of what you want. Use bullet points, and summarize.
  • Shorter subject lines as well! – Keeping your subject lines under 40 characters drastically increases the chance of them being opened on a mobile device.
  • Use single column layouts – Avoid problems that can sometimes arise with CSS by making your emails render in a single column. Also, a sidebar can tend to overwhelm by virtue of larger, more image heavy content.
  • Use larger fonts – Make text at least 14 points with a semi-bold font, and headlines should be 22 points. Don’t use colored backgrounds if at all possible. Black on white is far easier to read on a small screen.
  • Make calls to action prominent – Make your calls to action unmistakable and impossible to miss! Also, having them near the top can result in better results.
  • Spread out your links – Clicking a link on a phone is hard enough without you putting them right above another. Space them out!
  • Don’t go wider than 300 pixels – This means all text and images.
  • Keep your thumbs in mind – Make your buttons thumb-sized; at least 44 pixels wide and high.
  • Give thought to the Sender name – On many email clients, especially Apple (43%) the Sender name is more prominent than the subject line, so give a thought as to what you want to say here.

Since the share of our audience in mobile is only going to rise for the foreseeable future, it’s high time to take the initiative and spend a little time optimizing your emails for mobile success.

Thanks for Reading!

We welcome your ideas and feedback to make our content more applicable to your needs. Contact us anytime!

Best wishes for much success!

Neil Gass
Grow Smart Marketing