All posts by April Heavens- Woodcock

About April Heavens- Woodcock

Author: April Heavens–Woodcock , is the Chief Buzz Officer Touching Clients a Digital Marketing Firm that specializes in strategic online marketing development for businesses. She is passionate about helping businesses grow their bottom line with effective tools. She speaks regularly on social media, email marketing, and marketing around the East Coast.

5 Ways To Optimize Images For SEO

5 Ways To Optimize Images For SEO

 

5 Ways To Optimize Images For SEOYour competition is just one click away. This is especially true if your website takes a lot of time before it fully loads. Aside from potential customers leaving you, a slow-loading website also keeps you away from ranking on top of search engine results pages. To minimize the waiting time and increase loading speed, many of your website’s elements need to be optimized, including implementing work to optimize images for SEO.

While it may seem like a lengthy process, optimizing images for SEO can pay off for your website by making it more likely to be ranked in search engines. If you take the time to invest effort in optimizing the images on your website, you can give your pages an advantage over the rest of the web. Agencies that offer SEO services can also perform a site audit to determine which images and elements need optimizing.

How To Make Your Images Load Fast

There are many SEO strategies you can implement for your website. Some of these can be applied to your images as well. If you use images on your site, follow these tips to optimize them for search engines. 

1. Add Alt Tags For Your Images

An alt tag, also known as “alt attribute” or “alt definition,” is a HyperText Markup Language (HTML) attribute that one can add to image tags to give search engines a text alternative. Images aren’t interpretable by search engines, but by using alt tags, search engines can “read” the image through the text provided. As a result, images in alt tags can help a website rank higher in search engines—assuming the appropriate keywords are used. 

2. Compress Your Images

High-definition images are quite large in terms of file size. This contributes to slower load times that would affect user experience and consequently, the search engine ranking of your site. One technique to avoid this is to allow image compression. This process minimizes the size of image files in bytes without sacrificing their quality. 

The now smaller file size cuts down on the time it takes to send pictures over the internet or import them from web pages. This is a great way of optimizing your site for SEO because it allows your web pages to load faster. Remember that page speed and SEO are inextricably linked.

You can use well-known photoshop editing software and plugins to compress your images. But before doing this, it’s important to know that the key is to find the balance between the lowest file size and acceptable quality. You don’t want an overly compressed file that would affect the quality of the image as this would also affect the overall appeal of your website.

3. Use Vector Images If Possible

First, it’s vital to grasp the distinctions between image vectors and raster images. For complex scenes with irregular shapes and details, raster images are used. On the other hand, vector images are suitable for images that include geometric shapes. Knowing the differences between the two can help you decide which image type should you use in your website.

Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) is a vector format that’s usually used for logos, icons, text, and simple images. The good thing about them is they’re automatically scalable in all browsers and photo editing applications. They also get indexed by search engines similarly to other image formats like Portable Network Graphics (PNGs) and Joint Photographic Group (JPG). SVG files are usually smaller in size than PNG or JPG files. As a consequence, load times can be decreased.

If you want to know how great of an option vectors are when it comes to having fast loading images, performing an image optimization audit can help you.

5 Ways To Optimize Images For SEO

4. Name Your Image For Search Engines

Image file names also play an important role in SEO. Therefore, you should choose the correct keywords for them. You can change the filename by default to help search engines understand your images and improve their value. 

5. Remove Irrelevant Metadata

An image may contain a variety of data when it was taken. These can include its exposure time, the date it was taken, the author (photographer), camera specs, and other details. This information is known as the metadata, and it’s typically created automatically by the camera or device that was used to capture the shot. 

This type of information might be critical for some websites, but it may be entirely useless for others. By removing some of these unnecessary data, your image could load faster on your website.

Takeaways

Images give life and detail to your blog or website. And if optimized properly, they can bring a good amount of free traffic to your site. By optimizing your images for SEO, you can also enjoy the benefits of appearing higher in search engine rankings.

Top Marketing Tips for Beginners

Top Marketing Tips for Beginners

Top Marketing Tips for Beginners

Being a business professional or a successful startup doesn’t mean that you’re going to be naturally skilled at marketing. Marketing is a significant field and profession all in itself, and while good marketing can always be learned, many business professionals may feel on the back foot if they’re not familiar with effective marketing techniques.

While there are always ways to improve your marketing, such as employing someone else to do it for you or learning some key skills yourself, what matters more is that it’s not neglected, even if your expertise lies elsewhere.

To allow yourself to feel more confident and comfortable with marketing, here are some top tips for beginners.

Get to Know All Relevant Channels

In order to market effectively, you first need to know which platforms and channels are available to you to use as marketing. There are many great options, but it’s also important to hone in on the ones which are best suited for your particular business and then tailor each piece of content (rather than posting identical marketing content to every platform).

Some of the key marketing channels you should be aware of include:

  • Social Media (all platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube)
  • Your own website and blog
  • Your own SEO efforts for search engines
  • Free or paid advertising
  • Guest posting

Know Who You’re Marketing To

Success with marketing isn’t just about what you produce; it’s about knowing who you’re marketing to. You can’t hope to create relevant promotional material that packs a punch if you have no idea who your target consumer is.

Therefore, consumer research is just as crucial within your marketing strategy as the content itself. Take the time to get to know your target audience, how to engage with them, the type of advertising they like to see, and how you can best connect.

Perfect Your Website 

If you’re working hard to improve your SEO and have people land on your business website, then you want that website to be the best it can be as part of your marketing strategy. Getting consumers to land on your site is half the battle; keeping them there is where you need to take that one step further.

Concentrating on building and maintaining a business website with engaging content is therefore crucial to any marketing strategy. You can also find website support if you’re struggling with time management or need professional services to help you to ensure that even after your website is built that you help close on hand.

Using and Understanding Data is Key

Putting engaging and relevant content out there is great, but you need to know whether it’s working. Therefore, within your strategy, plan for data gathering and analysis to learn how your marketing material is doing within the consumer market.

Collecting data and knowing how to analyze it is key. You can use programs such as Google Analytics to better understand your business interactions. However, you should also pay attention to feedback data on posts you make, for example.

SEO is a Must

If you’ve only heard of SEO in passing, then it’s time to familiarize yourself with it in detail. This is crucial if you’re looking for long-term success. SEO means knowing exactly how to market your business and use the right keywords to get the right attention from search engines and your consumers.

You should implement SEO into everything you do. From website content, blog posts, product descriptions, to social media posts, to name a few.

Learn what your consumers are searching for and tailor your target keywords to that.

If you’re new to the field, then a lot of initial effort will be about research. But, once you’re comfortable and confident with who your target market is, marketing will become a lot easier.

4 Mobile Apps That Let You Earn While You Shop

4 Mobile Apps That Let You Earn While You Shop

4 Mobile Apps That Let You Earn While You Shop

E-commerce is driving the American economy and that of the rest of the world. It made possible the rise of such titans as Jeff Bezos, the first centibillionaire on the planet. And we totally understand that. These days mobile apps are core to e-commerce business.

At a time when the virus is still roaming at large, people prefer to shop online. What many do not realize is mobile shopping is at the center of online sales. As over 306 million Americans are stuck indoors and adversely affected by the virus, 72% of these consumers use their smartphones to shop online.

That certainly speaks of convenience. And as you shop in-store using your mobile device, there’s that bygone conclusion the relegates mobile shopping as a money-eating machine. You’re bound to wonder if there are ways your smartphone or any mobile device for that matter, can earn you cash. And save you some.

You’re in luck. As much as mobile shopping has become the next big thing in America, a slew of apps has made it their goal to give you a better shopping experience. This actually means you can earn some dollars using them. Or save some.

CamFind

Have you ever had that feeling when you see something you want but don’t know where to get it? Well, that problem right there is what CamFind is all about. And the solution is visual search. Indeed, this recognition technology is changing the way we shop. Small wonder it’s making waves online.

It’s one of the top mobile apps that is simple. CamFind makes shopping a cinch. You can get vital information on a product just by taking a picture of it. Not only will the app identify the product, but also, and perhaps most importantly, it will show you where to buy one.

Even better, you get price comparisons. That way you can buy a product at the best deal possible. You just have to take a picture of your desired product and voila, you get results. 

If you’re thinking CamFind, available free both on iOS and Android, is only good for consumer items, think again. You can also use it for real estate. It can provide key information with regard to houses and properties. By doing so, you get the price, address, and history of the house. But that’s no all. You even get pictures of the interior.

In a way, this can help lessen your burden when you want to zero in on a property. Also, it is a great tool so you can process your home loan from the best mortgage companies. In effect, buying a house becomes a breeze.

ShopSavvy

 And now for one of the top cash-earning mobile apps. Unlike CamFind, ShopSavvy relies on bar codes. So to get the best deals, you just have to scan a bar code of a product. And voila the app will show you which retailer can give you the best price. We’re talking about a bazillion products from over 40,000 stores, Amazon and Walmart including.

But that’s not all there is to it. You can also earn as much as 20% cashback when you buy through the app. Though not a regular feature, this scheme is deployed by some stores now and then. Additionally, you can also track the price of your favorite product. You can arrange an email to be sent to you every time a good deal comes. So you can buy the product at the best price.

Ibotta

If you want to enjoy some money back when you shop, then theIbottaapp is for you. The good news is this app is free for both Android and iOS. This app also works with top retailers in the country.

To get some cash, just scan your receipts. You can also save deals. Or better yet, access app-specific deals so you can save some. With Ibotta, you can scan your receipt so you can get bonus money back for featured offers. Take note that Ibotta can give you cents back for specific items. Instead of pictures or scan codes, you scan receipts here. A scanned receipt confirms your purchase. After which balance will be added to your buyer account (set it up). You get to cash out when the amount reaches $20.

Slickdeals

Wouldn’t you want to be notified when a prized item goes on sale? Of course. You would choose to be the first to know if you can, right? That’s what this app does.

5 Reasons Companies Are Investing In Podcasts

5 Reasons Companies Are Investing In Podcasts

5 Reasons Companies Are Investing In Podcasts

It hasn’t been long since podcasts first gained attention. A while back, they’re just another feature that mobile users tend to ignore; but, now, it’s an entirely different story.

So, what is a podcast exactly?

It came from the terms ‘iPod’ and ‘broadcast.’ It’s an informational type of audio meant to be a syndicated series that listeners can download all at once, per week, or even per season. The feature started in 2004, but was not in the best interest of listeners. However, it gained a fair amount of attention when the media itself sparked the beginning of its fame and popularity.

As of 2021, podcasting is one of the most effective advertisements used in business. Despite its existence somehow hidden and mostly discovered through word of mouth, it has already contributed significantly to the corporate world. Corporate groups have already ensured their businesses’ success through podcast investments.

How can audio information media be a vital player in industries?  It would seem questionable, but the most priceless asset is more than it meets the eye in hustling. Find out why below.

 

1. Podcast Listeners Belong To Higher Income Bracket 

 

According to blogger stats, 21% have a 100k household income or higher, and about 41% have a 75k heightened. Companies that aim to reach greater heights in terms of profit, shares, and territory will always strive for well-off households that can afford them. This reveals that there’s a higher chance of this set of demographics to purchase advertised content. Moreover, 51% of the listeners are four-year degree holders, strengthening the pool of prospects for competitive companies.

 

2. 93% Of Podcast Listeners Are Social Media Users

 

It’s no secret that social media influences the direction of the market—this has been proven time and time again. About podcasts, almost all the listeners are active on social media platforms, which are an excellent opportunity for engagement and promotion. Social interactions users can already affect the fluctuation of mentions. How much more if almost everyone does the same?  It’s an advertisement by the users for the users. It would be a waste for companies to pass up such a brilliant method of gaining potential customers.

 

3. The Podcast Is The Mainstream Of 2021

 

The podcast remodeled the field of content marketing. By the time it has begun to gain steady media progress, about 20% purchased products or services simply from hearing them on podcasts. From 2019 up to the present, leading podcast companies have made moves to expand and innovate.

A podcast is also one of the priorities in technological advancements. This seems to uphold the claim that podcasting soared at the top against other forms of content marketing. As it sets the standards, it could not also allow itself to fall behind the race. Concrete plans are already being made to allow podcasting to run most, if not all, of the marketing arena.

 

4. Revenues Reach Billions Of Dollars

 

Business Investment

Of course, the corporate world won’t easily invest in something. unless there’s absolute merit, and it just so happens that podcasts guarantee such extreme conditions. Last 2019, iHeart Media raked USD$3.68 billion in revenues, Spotify, €6.76 million, and the National Public Radio, USD$283.4 million. These numbers prove just how much companies get from this new form of audio information media. There’s no doubt that it’s worth investing in.

Aside from that, due to the taxes, subscriptions, and even the profit gained from those who purchase products due to podcasts’ influence, the circulation of money aids economic growth.

 

5. Podcast Is Portable 

 

What truly separates podcasting from usual promotion and advertisement is that it’s found almost anywhere. Unlike in televisions, billboards, and newspapers wherein there’s a designated area for promotion, podcasts are portable and user-friendly.

Statistics show that 52% listen to podcasts in their cars, 46% listen to them while traveling, and 40% do so during walks, runs, and even biking escapades. Aside from it having a broad scope of audience, podcasting also encompasses different types of locations and lifestyles. It is no wonder why companies are so eager to invest their money in podcasts.

Conclusion

The rise of podcasts has rocked both business and entertainment. With its growing popularity, podcasting still has a part to play in world economics for the next 20 years or more, if humans don’t get tired of it. Or, maybe, people could develop something better. Who knows?

But, as of now, podcasting is setting the bar higher when it comes to advertisements and promotions. As the leading source of revenues in the ad department, companies continue to invest in it in hopes of earning more and expanding their empire indefinitely.

The Best Ways To Save Time In Your Business

The Best Ways To Save Time In Your Business

The Best Ways To Save Time In Your Business

They say that time is money, and in most businesses, this is certainly the case. This means you need to divide up your time effectively. Especially as this will allow you to be productive. Which in turn, allows you to be successful, and make more money. When you can allocate your time in the right way, you’re able to do everything you need to do. Thereby, giving time to enhance your reputation, and make a profit.

However, it can be hard to use your time in the most effective way when you’re busy working on your business. Before you know it, you’ve spent far longer on one element than you should have, meaning there is less time for everything else. At some point, something will have to give. If this is how you’re feeling, it’s time to be more objective; step back and look at how you’re using your time. Then come up with ways to save more time in some areas so you can allocate more to others. Here are some of the ways you can do this.

Invest In New Tech 

New technology is emerging all the time, and much of it is specifically for business owners. There are many different kinds of technology that will enable you to free up time. Either because they take on the tasks you’re currently doing themselves, or they help you do the work in a more efficient, effective way.

Customer service is an ideal example of where new tech can be useful. You may not have time to answer every email and query as it comes in or even to respond to every order. Remember, you need to deal with the other day-to-day tasks of running your business, but your customers need you too. What can you do about this? You can invest in new tech that will help you; a chatbot on your site, and automate your email responses. Or, perhaps a bespoke answering service could help you keep your customers happy.

New technology can be helpful in every area of your business, and it’s the perfect way to free up time.

Prioritize Your Tasks 

Sometimes the reason you’re losing so much time is that you’re not able to prioritize your tasks and use the time you have effectively. You might even find you’re beginning to multitask in an effort to get everything done. However, since multitasking is ultimately not effective (and can even be damaging), it’s far better to prioritize your tasks and work in the most productive way for you and your business.

One of the best ways to do this is to use Gantt Chart tools. This chart can help you determine which tasks need to be done by when and create a digital to-do list that gives you a timeframe to work by. You can use this for yourself and your team. Thereby, ensuring that everyone is productive and doing what they are meant to do at all times.

Train Your Employees 

As a business owner, you really don’t have to do everything yourself. It may have begun that way, but as time has gone on and you’ve grown, you have employed people. Thereforem you need to use them in the most time-saving and effective way. Rather than trying to do everything yourself, it’s crucial that you are able to let go of a little control and delegate the work. You’ll be amazed at how much time you can save when you do this, allowing you to work on the areas of business that are going to help it grow while the day-to-day running can be left to your team.

Of course, in order for this to happen in the right way and to save you time rather than add to your burden (and to preserve the reputation of your business), training is key. Give your staff the training they need. Then ask them to do tasks that relate to that training, and everyone will be able to work in the right way, boosting your business hugely.