All Posts By

Michelle Goodisson

Influencer Marketing Agency Surrey

Influencer Marketing Strategy Wins The Super League

By | Insights

Super League Your Business With our Influencer Marketing Agency

Our Influencer Marketing Agency in Surrey, plays in the Super League of brand exposure, engagement and click-throughs, for the right reasons.  

The so called Big 6 English Premier League football clubs attempted and failed to conclude their long awaited dream of creating a European Super League.  An effort to combine 20 of the largest European teams with mid-week games to create more viewing numbers on TV, in stadiums, and ultimately driving more revenue from family’s, investors and subscription TV.  

However as an SEO focused Digital Marketing Agency, who handles marketing campaigns across the UK, why not keyword spin this news in favour of UK business.  What is becoming the super league of marketing? It’s Influencer Marketing.

Influencer Marketing Campaigns Are Here To Stay 

Brand partnerships with established creators and influencers are showing super league growth above traditional advertising and other digital planning.  

This is more apparent with those businesses with consumer products, where longer form content can present more of an emotional pull.  

Longer content with Influencers brings advantages due to more time spent showcasing features and benefits with your product.  No customer wants to be the first purchaser and whilst product reviews on your site (if you have any?) may help, watching a YouTuber or reading a blogger’s experience with your product will build more brand trust.

Why Go Super League with Influencer Marketing

All our retained customers have 50% of their marketing spend directed with Instagram and YouTube influencers.  Company owners want to showcase best practices for their European offices or US head office.  

It glorifies products and replicates what the end customer would actually feel.  It’s the best shareable content and some influencers do have exposure cross-market. 

Influencers Have Super League Production Capability

The advantages of Influencers are that they prepare and film from a ready-made home suite, or with a real family unit that is truly connected.  You get an instant best-prepared studio and a cast who show real emotional rapport, with the whit to make videos natural and engaging.

Influencer Marketing Will Super League Brand Exposure

Other forms of marketing take longer to connect with consumers.  TV commercials for instance need x 3.5 OTS (opportunity to see) for the message to connect, yes that’s 3.5 times to watch an advert before any consumer brand re-call develops.

Influencers can provide an instant tent pole boost to click throughs. Whereas Facebook / Instagram marketing will need at least a week, depending on budgets, to learn the algorithm /target market and deliver the communication objectives.

Influencers provide instant coverage for brands to their followers, there isn’t a lag or slow build as with social media advertising. Whatever ever your holiday target, Half-time Term, Book Week, Easter, Mothers Day/ Fathers Day, switching on an influencer partnership for 3 weeks prior can help your customer view the video, click through to your site, make a purchase and have it delivered to the recipient on time.  

You have not just brought your marketing into the super league, but super charged it for your tent pool selling periods.

Influencer Videos Provide The Best Flexibility

Whilst You Tube pre-rolls improve viewer attention vs TV, they must be edited to squeeze in the best 6 seconds of footage before the user usually skips.  Shot video content sometimes is not there to manage this and maybe the brand manager did not have this in mind at storyboard stage.

Influencers Have Played In The Super League Already 

Facebook and Instagram advertising all hangs on one post or video, but is the message clear, have you got at least 4 different adverts to test and have you placed enough marketing budget behind them?  Influencers briefed correctly will manage to deliver your key messages within their video length.  They understand the objectives and know what engagement is possible based on previous posts.

Influencers tap straight into their follower’s psychology, connection and relationship with them. Marketers can cut through the 3.5 OTS and bypass any time limits with prerolls.  The average person will watch YouTube videos for just under 12minutes, how about that for Super League consumer engagement, you can’t buy that anywhere else online.

Super League Influencer Marketing Can Be Shared 

Tik Tok shows how you can share influencer marketing content on an iPhone

Influencer content can also be shared instantly through their followers connections, where as other bought media cannot.  A creator with a funny video can easily be shared amongst across Facebook, Twitter or emailed via a link, in fact it can be shared almost 14 different ways from the YouTube page.

Tik Tok goes further by allowing shares via Snap Chat, WhatsApp, Instagram & Instagram Stories, Facebook, Twitter, and email.  This is where views can go virally big time and we have seen dizzy heights of 15m views with our brands.

Not only shared, but you can gain permission to re-use the creator content on your own social media channels to impress your own in-house followers and Super League it even more.  With more negotiation you can also fine tune the content into pre-roll ads adverts and use a recognised brand endorser.

How Much Does Super League Influencer Marketing Cost 

We’re not as expensive as those football clubs.  Our influencer packages start at around £2,000 – £3000 for a respected Instagram Influencer at around £250k followers.  

If you want to drive traffic to your ecommerce site and go for glory around a specific date in the year, do get in touch and we will build best practice around you.

CONTACT US

Email: support@creamsodamedia.com | Tel: 01276 490448

Voice Search is the New SEO Marketing for brands, with the rise of smart speakers and mobile phones with 5G

Voice Search Is The New SEO Marketing For Brands

By | Insights | No Comments

The use of voice search and smart speakers for SEO marketing is fast-becoming an opportunity for brands to target consumers in a new and convenient way at home. We are a leading SEO agency in Surrey and we believe this article will be a key subject to consider.

Command and be in demand – its the SEO of Content Marketing.

Voice Search is completely unique but it expands the potential for brands to connect with consumers in a way that is tailored to their verbal search behaviours. 

With technology and analytics has come an ability for marketers to drill down into the data. They can create marketing strategies that are specifically designed for consumers and their needs.

It’s a smart SEO approach that generates results and with the smart speaker industry likely to quadruple by 2022, marketers are going to have even more scope to target more consumers.

Voice Search being used on Alexa, it lights up in a purple room

What is Voice Search in Marketing?

Voice Search began in 2011 but was limited to Google Chrome. It wasn’t till 2014 that Google then made a 5 language rollout and by now most countries are included.

Nowadays adopting a voice search strategy could be one of the biggest things marketers could do at this moment in time. Why?

We have many choices of voice search with Siri on mobile and Ipad, Google Home, Amazon Alexa + Sonos Smart speakers. They are now extremely clever devices and are present ever more in the living room or also in bedrooms.

Voice Search being used with iPads, Mobiles and Google Assistant

They allow marketers to create strategies that are tailored to each customer age group, helping to build relationships and brand loyalty. 

With the likes of Alexa and Google Assistant both being able to differentiate between voices, they can deliver insight like never before. They have the ability to provide information about specific users and that means that personalised messages and content can be delivered at the right time.

Furthermore, brands can take a natural approach when it comes to interactions, and that seamless relationship aids retention and loyalty.

Voice search in marketing is also quicker and it provides convenience too, especially for those who are looking to do things quickly. What this means is that those brands that utilise it are more likely to deliver satisfaction.

Top brands have worked closely with smart devices to create intelligent appliances that can speak with customers, answer questions, and provide useful information at the same time.

Is Voice Search Being Used?

Absolutely. This new form of searching for things online is becoming a new norm for consumers because it’s simple and convenient.

Users no longer have to pick up their phone and input their queries by hand. They can now let their chosen smart device do it for them.  

With 5G approaching, mobile use and voice will be used with greater frequency and higher consumer expectations. Businesses are now even deliberating over designing an App or Website to take advantage.

Research has found that around 48% of people are now using voice in order to carry out general web searches while 39% are now using smart speakers. That least study was taken back in July 2019, so you can assume 2020 was even greater (Lockdown!) and 2021 will continue to grow.

What Makes Voice Search Important?

Google is constantly evolving to keep up with the ever-changing demands of users. As a result, voice technology is slowly becoming the face of SEO.

This is down to the fact that users are submitting queries that are no longer text searches. As a result, it means that businesses can now implement longer keyword phrases into their content.

Furthermore, voice searches are made mostly of full questions which means that brands can also use relevant question keyword phrases that mirror what they are asking. 

What this means is that brands should consider adopting a voice search strategy if they do not want to get left behind.

It’s not just important for ensuring that customers can find your website but it’s also crucial in helping people choose your brand over your competitors. 

If your competitors have a voice strategy and you don’t, then they have a higher chance of being found easily by searchers as a result of a more effective SEO strategy.

Voice search technology is still relatively new but it’s not going away any time soon and so, this is your chance to make sure you can get ahead of competitors.

Brands Embrace Voice Search With Smart Speakers

Brands now have an opportunity to embrace smart speakers and use them to enhance relationships, loyalty and sales.

Smart devices rely on skills and actions and that means that it can give customers the opportunity to tailor their purchasing experience to their needs. 

Users are now turning to smart devices to take care of many elements of their lives and that can include asking for news, obtaining bank updates and setting reminders, it’s fair to say that they can carry out almost anything we ask of them.

This has meant that brands like Domino’s have been taking advantage of skills and actions that allow people to order pizzas without needing to pick up the phone.

This can be done in as little as 6 spoken words, after you download the Domino’s Skill. Here’s their YouTube video.

(C) Dominos

This goes further because even cleaning brands are now taking advantage of this technology. As a result, consumers can follow step by step instructions to help them remove stains.

Gaming brands such as Trivial Pursuit Tap from Hasbro, can be played on Alexa. With the addition of Echo buttons which light up for player interaction.

Brands are providing recipes, pollen counts and even information about dog breeds that can help people to purchase the right food for their dogs.

This is building brand affinity, a relationship and delivering a uniquely tailored experience.

Everyone is driven by convenience and control because that’s what consumers want and need. 

Informational Voice Search Queries

Users are seeking convenience and if they are not purchasing then they need information.

Brands such as Capital One are now making it possible for customers to keep on top of their credit card balance. Despite this, the process is slightly long-winded and as users still need to provide their sign-in details and a pin, it might seem more of a hindrance than a help for many.

This clearly highlights that perhaps the use of voice search isn’t yet the right fit for brands.  Clearly, your thumbprint and face identity is still quicker via the credit card app on the phone.

As a result, brands are going to need to think more strategically when it comes to utilising voice search with skills and speakers.

Rather than give customers the ability to do things that they can already do, why not take an approach whereby they consider their needs and concerns.

This requires a wider approach that’s not so direct and more subtle. If a person asks Alexa “what is heartburn?”, which is a problem many people suffer from but it isn’t just a search that’s informational.

This is because the user might have a follow-up question that asks “how do I prevent it” and this is where brands can really take advantage.

Despite this, brands are going to need to own the right to operate at this level due to competition.

These informational voice search questions that are being asked are the perfect opportunity for brands to use smart speakers as an avenue for customer acquisition.

They can then build on this because it’s not just about using this as a way of offering a solution but also promoting other products. They can then begin to divert users towards products that are more valuable and trade up.

Who is the Consumer Target for Voice?

Voice Search or Voice Control with smart speakers are now becoming mainstream at home. It’s a new technology that has become particularly popular with the younger generation using voice.

They can turn homes into smart homes, keep people connected and offer a vast amount of convenience – something that millennials, in particular, are looking for. 

Furthermore, people are now using smart speakers to enrich their lives in ways that were once unknown.

They can create shopping lists, add previously bought items to their basket or just automatically order again.

Smart speakers also provide access to music streaming, once again, providing brands with an opportunity to build profiles based on their listening choices and the purchases that they are making.

It’s a generation that prefers to do things in an automated way instead of having to click through websites to make purchases.

Through targeted marketing, businesses can monitor their food choices, delve into their most cooked recipes and even identify interests. All of this data can be pulled together to create a detailed profile of almost every user. 

So, although smart speakers are available for everyone, it could be fair to say that those who are possible under the age of 40 are more than likely going to explore the full functionality of them. 

Don’t forget those 55+ or those even older who find it hard to type or even use a computer. Voice control could help bridge the digital canyon.

Voice Search SEO Tips

How can you be found on voice search? This begins by incorporating structured data using speakable markup, as almost 40% of voice search results will come from pages that have schema markup structured data.

Of course, many people carrying out voice searches are looking for local businesses so your Google My Business listing will need to be optimised. This involves making sure that all data is up-to-date. Do not underestimate this.

Google Mobile-First indexing and the number of “near me” searches are now making it extremely important to have a mobile-friendly website. 

You need to make sure your website is mobile-friendly because voice search and a mobile-friendly website go hand in hand. Hand-held devices will be used more often for voice search especially now with 5G being introduced.

We detail in this article how to optimise your website which is very relevant for voice search, it will open in another window.

Finally, you will need to make sure that all of your content is optimised for voice search queries. The average length of a voice search is 29 words, so you should place a focus on long-tail keywords.

Use this SEO for Voice search combined with solid website optimisation practices + content and you will be competitive. 

So, with all of this in mind, brands are now looking to target users in a new and immersive way. With the ability to tailor strategies on a personal level, it is undoubtedly shaping the future and the way in which brands and consumers connect.

CONTACT US

For any advice to increase the ranking of your website for voice search, contact Cream Soda Multimedia at support@creamsodamedia.com or Tel +44 (0)1276 490448 / Mob 07855 356393

animated visual showing two sites back linking, and why they improve SEO

Why Backlinks Help Your Website To be 10x More Juicy!

By | Insights | No Comments

Will Backlinks Help My Website?

If you have heard that backlinks help your website then you might be wondering what they are?

If you want your business to thrive online then backlinks will be the missing piece of the jigsaw that you have been looking for. Our Web Design Surrey UK team is all over this with their SEO counterparts.

Despite this, it’s important to understand that backlinks will boost your SEO rankings and help your business to grow. Whether you’re a start-up or an established small business that is looking to expand, you might think that backlinks are only for those who have a significant online presence or run a large, multi-million-pound business. 

They are critical for any website, so if you want to benefit from backlinks, it helps to understand how they can underpin the success of your business.

What Are Backlinks?

What are Backlinks? Backlinks are one-way external links from one website to another.  These links can take the form of a keyword link or a full URL displayed link within a page of another website.  For the receiving website, this inbound link is essentially the Backlink.  When clicked on, users will arrive at the other site.

However, the benefits are not just the extra referral visits to your website, rather it’s the vote of confidence you have gained from another site.  The more the merrier, because search engines love them and see them as verified support for your content.

Think of it like going for the leader of a political party.  You need the support of Members of Parliament.  Each supporting MP provides a vote to increase your ranking in the party and % share of the vote.  

That was just an analogy to explain how backlinks help your website and how it gains authority and rank within your larger universe/niche.  

Backlinks help your website as they increase organic search
Ref Ahrefs. Domain visibility increases with Backlink numbers

Backlinks Boost Your SEO and Help Website Authority

To improve rankings with search engines, your business has to get noticed and there are many SEO factors that feed into this.

The SEO industry agrees that backlinks help your website, it’s simply that they create authority and this can be compounded by the QTY of them and varying degrees of authority the links come from.

Research has found that over 99% of the top-ranking websites have at least one external link that points to their website. And these are not just business directory links, but solid relevant links.

Backlinks can take many forms but when Google comes across a backlink it makes a number of decisions. 

The first is to see if the link is relevant, i.e. is the link on a spammy blog website, is it simply placed on an irrelevant website with many other backlinks for other websites. If so, it could ignore it or it will penalise your ranking because it will consider it as manipulative. 

However, you can earn links whereby businesses naturally link back. This is where your website is used as a relevant reference to back up their article topic, these are considered blog backlinks.  

This will work in your favour if the linking website is authentic, relevant to your sector, and has a stronger SEO value. The SEO juice will flow onto your page and search engines will see that vote of confidence.

There are many strategies available to earn backlinks but ultimately, if you get it right, it’s likely that your business is going to rank well and that could be the difference between being on the 1st page of search or page 5.

Despite the influence that backlinks have on SEO, there is more to them and that’s why they are so important for your business.

Backlinks Are Clicked By Potential Customers

Backlinks are so much more than just links that connect back to your website. Of course, they boost SEO score and that helps organic search, but there is more to it. 

One of the most significant ways of increasing traffic and e-commerce profits is through potential customers clicking on backlinks.

If your website’s front page or your blog post has been linked to from a high-quality site then you are more than likely going to see a significant spike in traffic. 

Backlinks help your website only when from high-quality, popular sites, this drives traffic.

These sites have a large number of users and readers and so, the content that they provide is informative and useful. What this means is that readers are likely to click on backlinks and the traffic you receive is real. 

What’s more, the people who have clicked on the link to your website are feeling positive about your business or brand. After all, the publication that they have been reading has recognised you and that means that they trust you – it’s the reason they clicked the link. 

Users now become potential customers who might want to purchase your products or services.  These customers are now way down the marketing funnel, near the purchase intent phase.

Backlinks Help Your Website Long Term 

It can take time to create backlinks that work effectively.  But once you have high-quality backlinks they will always work hard for your business. 

This means that as long as backlinks are trustworthy, reliable and authoritative they will help your website rankings continuously over time.

It doesn’t matter whether this is weeks, months or years, mature backlinks have been around for many years and still successfully contribute to your ranking.

Once the content is out there on the internet, it is always reachable, readable, and relatable and that means that the long-term benefits are there to be seen.

If possible, it could be worth researching how to carry out link analysis on some of your posts that have seen the most success. This is regardless of whether they have been posted on your site or external sites.

Backlinks Help Your Website by Creating Trust

The way in which consumers behave and the decisions they make are mainly based around trust. 

It doesn’t matter whether you are a b2c small garage or a major b2b print company, there are going to be many other businesses out there doing exactly the same.

Therefore, consumers will do research and will choose the right brand based on whether they trust them or not. It’s vital that you do all you can to stand out from competitors.

The smallest % gains of originality with backlinks will stand you above the competitive set.

If potential customers see that you have been featured with backlinks on top, widely recognised blogs and news stories then trust is going to increase.

The reality is that consumers are always looking for a reason why they should use a brand.  When it comes to their priorities, trust is high up the list. 

The more people that trust your brand and business, the more they are likely to purchase from you. Along with this, complementary businesses are going to want to suggest business opportunities and partnerships. 

Furthermore, you might gain a lot of attention. Publishers might want to know more about your business through an interview, giving you more reach. They may also take more notice when you request a guest post or fire out a press release.

How To Get Backlinks

As we have mentioned, if you do things the wrong way, backlinks can work against you, so it simply isn’t worth cheating. Doing it the right way can prove challenging and you might need assistance but it’s worth the effort but how do you get them?

Make Use of Reputable Directories

It’s possible to place your business on human-edited directories as this will increase the number of backlinks helping your website.

While there are some useful free directories out there, you might find that you will need to pay to take advantage of trustworthy sites.  The results are wafer thin but should be considered as a minimum you can achieve yourself.

Create Backlink Bait That’s Effective

Creating Link Bait online to increase for backlinks to help your website

If you can create and publish content that is engaging, informative and well written then you are going to increase the likelihood of achieving backlinks naturally. 

The reason for this is that content that is considered to be of high quality, is likely to be shared and linked to.

To find success through this route, you should consider thinking about your audience and what they want to read as well as those within your industry. 

The content should be well written and easy to digest while ensuring you come across as an expert with your own research and findings. 

Build Backlinks With Guest Blogging

Guest blogging can be a highly successful way of achieving quality backlinks. However, one thing to remember is that you never pay to be a guest blogger. 

To do this successfully, you will need to make sure that you are involved with the targeted blog. You should comment where necessary and share posts that you believe are interesting. 

Essentially, the aim is to build a relationship with the blogger and when you are given the chance, you should make sure that the content you create is engaging and informative. If you do it the right way, guest blogging can prove to be extremely beneficial. 

The downside is that you have given up a quality piece of content for your own website.

You shouldn’t duplicate something you had written about before.  However if sacrificing it delivers the backlink from a better site than yours, then your SEO will improve.

Some journalists for example don’t allow backlinks. It’s best to watch a few sites for a while and study what their pattern of reciprocation. If a select few are backlinking, then approach them.

The guest site can provide a link to your website in the footer of the article or you could agree with them to allow, what is called a contextual link, deep in the body of the text.

Create Backlinks to Other Websites

Now, this approach must be used with caution, yet if the analysis is done correctly you may be fine.  This is basically like back-scratching or widely known as Link Exchanges.

From your website, you can link out to other websites, giving them a little help with Google and their ranking. If you do this and it becomes recognised then you are going to find that they might give you something back. This is one of those situations where you gain backlinks for doing something helpful. 

Also known as reciprocal linking, you will need to do it in moderation. So, avoid linking out to as many sites as possible just for the sake of it because it won’t always generate the response or the results you expect. 

What’s more, you will be losing a lot of authority in doing so and if a large portion of the websites link back to you then it could get picked up by Google, which could lead to you being penalised. What this means is that Google could deindex your website.

With algorithm updates comes new best practices for website owners, and the Google Penguin update put the nail in the coffin for manipulative backlinks.

How do I check for Backlinks for free

Log into your Google Search Console (GSC), click on Links 2/3 thirds down on the left.  Then review Top Linking Sites to see all visible back links to your website. 

Here you will find all your Business Directory listings, and backlinks to sites you were completely unaware of.  Contact site owners if you feel the backlink was unnecessary, ask them to delete our re-edit the links to ‘do not follow’.   

Keep monitoring backlinks from this page of GSC so you can keep track of the good, the bad, and the ugly. Some links can be toxic and they will drag your site down. 

There are many free backlink search tools out there, looking for you to subscribe, but you can get some minimum value from them, such as Moz, and SEMrush.

Simple Advice for Creating Backlinks for your Website 

We’ve written a fairly limited post and we hope it gives you the backstory on how backlinks help your website succeed.

Backlinks are clearly an important part of ensuring your business is getting recognised and noticed online.

It’s a highly competitive world and improving your search engine ranking could see you significantly increase traffic at the same time. 

There is a fine line between getting it right and getting it wrong.  Which means you might want to consider using a professional service to ensure that you reap the rewards.

Backlink packages are expensive because, to be honest, it does take time approaching website owners or journalists for approval to work with them.

Your best approach for backlink building is to continue releasing original content via blogs, spreading your content across social media, and building your website authority to eventually get backlinks for free. Make sure your website designers have these functions built-in.

However, make sure you correct your SEO basics fist i.e. Headers, before you start down the backlink road.

You can contact Cream Soda Media and we can show you how to check competitor backlinks, another level of understanding your competitors SEO.

CONTACT US

For any advice to increase the ranking of your website, contact Cream Soda Multimedia at support@creamsodamedia.com or Tel +44 (0)1276 490448 / Mob 07855 356393

Website maintenance is shown on a diagram as a mechanical digital engine

Website Maintenance – Learn 8 Reasons Why It Wins Big!

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Website Maintenance is like Car Servicing

It’s common for businesses to think that once their site is up and running that they can step away and ignore any website maintenance. However, your website is something that evolves with your business but also your customers and the ever-changing demands of search engines. 

We are a web development agency in Surrey with much experience in this area. If you choose to leave your website as it is then you are going to discover the common problems that arise as a result of not carrying out regular maintenance duties. 

You must not forget about the site once it’s up and running. Think of it as a digital engine compared to a car, one which needs its battery, tyres & fuel checked and at times replaced.

A car engines working parts are being maintained and this is similar to website maintenance

There are many different elements that feed into the overall performance, appearance and security of your website and all of that works collectively to help it achieve its goal.

As a business owner, your website is your shop window and so, the benefits of website maintenance cannot be ignored but failing to carry out maintenance will only result in it working against you.

With this in mind, what are the dangers of not maintaining your website, and what is a website maintenance plan?

Why Should You Always Maintain an Existing Website?

There are many different reasons why this has to be done. It’s important to look at it from a security perspective because security is constantly changing with risks.

Furthermore, customer retention is vital. As a result, updated content, repaired links, better content and functionality as well as speed all contribute to the user experience and satisfaction.

What this means is that a modern website is never truly “finished” and should be seen as work in progress. 

What Dangers Do Business Face If They Fail on Website Maintenace?

It’s quite clear over the years that a website services list is one that has to be followed. However, if businesses fail to maintain their website regularly they are going to experience a range of problems.

These oversights could be a thorn in their side and result in losing customers and profits. So, what are the dangers?

1. Missing out on Software Maintenance Updates

When you run a website, it’s likely to run on a specific platform. As an example, a large number of websites around the world are built on WordPress and so, that means that they are likely to need regular updates.

In WordPress, the core software that runs websites needs regular updating and these updates can be rolled out at any time. If these websites are not applied rapidly then websites functionalities might be lost as a result.

Furthermore, plugins require updating too as well as themes and on the whole, there is around one WordPress update each month.

The entire performance and functionality of your website will depend on running updates to the core software and any plugins that you might use.

This is a relatively simple process but is one that can be carried out quickly with the results being instantly noticed while helping your website to avoid future problems.

Check your CMS platform every day and watch out for any notifications for update notifications. Update and Activate the new file version.

However, make sure your site is backed up prior to updating the main WordPress software.

2. Failure to protect Customer Data without Website Maintenance

Website maintenance for security has to underpin everything you do as an online business. Believing that the security you have in place is enough is one of the biggest mistakes you could make.

Cyber threats are ongoing and as quickly as hackers are looking for new opportunities, security companies are finding solutions.

This means that a website that is considered secure today could be insecure tomorrow or even next week. It’s something that you have to take extremely seriously because these risks are a risk for your business but also your customers and users.

Hackers are constantly looking for vulnerabilities within your site and they often do this by finding vulnerabilities in code. They will attempt to take advantage of this and will spend huge amounts of time exploring sites that might be exploited.

However, you can avoid or reduce the risk of becoming a victim of cybercrime by ensuring you carry out maintenance on your website in relation to security.

If you are using a platform such as WordPress then you might want to consider updating plugins. If you have your own server then you will need to make sure that all of the relevant patches are installed.

Website maintenance statistics prove that security maintenance is probably the most important element of all and you need to keep on top of it.

Should you get hacked then you will need to remove the virus, clean up your website and then carry out a restore, all of which takes time but will also put your business out of action.

Also, remember that it’s important to consider your users. Their personal details are at risk, so it’s really important to make sure you are protected.

3.Content Goes Stale Without Website Maintenance

It’s not just about updates and security when it comes to your website maintenance services list.

Your content is key to engagement and you have to make sure that you engage with users. If you keep your content the same then what incentive do they have to return?

Below is a snippet from our client’s Google Search Console graph, who signed up for a content plan and a monthly competitive keyword tracker. Their site from the beginning of October rebounded and started to deliver with e-commerce sales and this is what our Web Design Surrey UK team is very good at.

Google Search Console graph showing website impressions increasing due to website maintenance package

Users are now looking for a fresh experience whereby they can access the latest products, news, or information. Outdated information is not going to prove helpful and you will also be giving the impression that you are a business that simply doesn’t care or isn’t around anymore.

Whether it’s a new look or regular blog posts, keeping content new and intriguing is all part of keeping your website relevant.

4. SEO Eventually Dilutes Without Website Maintenance

Search Engine Optimisation is ongoing and it is something that needs to be actively managed in order to experience the benefits of website maintenance.

SEO is all about ensuring your website is set up and ready for search engines to recognise it.

Site optimisation is wide and varied and can include many elements such as keywords, exploring competitors, streamlining design, and ensuring visitors stay on your site.

Search engines are extremely intelligent and they have the ability to rank your website based on all of these factors. Keeping keywords fresh and ensuring they target your customers based on what they are searching for will ensure your website ranks well.

Without up-to-date SEO, your website will simply slip down the rankings and that means that people won’t find you. That will result in reduced traffic and fewer profits.

Maintenance plans can include regular reporting from your Google Search Console and Analytics, to help pick up on Mobile errors, downgrades in Impressions.

Plans also maintain broken external page links, which can harm page SEO score.

5. Fail to Back Up, Prepare to Fail

One of the most crucial elements of website maintenance is to make sure you are prepared should anything fail.

Over time, your website will evolve. But if you are making backups months apart then you are going to lose vast amounts of data should you be relying on a past backup to get your site back up and running. 

Regular backups can be undertaken by website maintenance software but it is something that you should place a focus on.

Is your Web Hosting provider backing up every 2 hrs? Is your host provider giving value? These are features you can talk to them about to make sure these plans are scheduled.

Is your database also being backed-up every 24 hrs? Question the impact of such failure in accessing key data and what that does to your operational efficiency.

6. Miss Out on New Features That Maintenance Delivers

The technology that drives websites is evolving at an impressive rate and these features can help you to align your website with the needs of your users.

You might miss out on enriched social media integration features that can help your business reach new users and engage with current users.

SEO plug in’s rival each other and evolve to improve their interface, you may lose out on how to improve your DIY SEO for posts and new page updates.

Read what the updates are for every plug in or other software. Make sure you understand how they can help elevate your impact on the website.

Furthermore, you might also miss out on free security features such as an SSL certificate that helps to encrypt communications keeping user information safe.

7. User Experience Will Suffer Without Website Maintenance

The image of your brand will be reflected in your website and it is your website that will generate that first impression. It will be influential when helping people to determine whether you are a business worth trusting.

With a website that doesn’t function correctly, is slow and laborious it’s common to see people leave and go elsewhere. You will need to take a look at page speed and broken links but also ‘page not found’ errors and poor grammar or spelling errors.

Making sure maintenance is in place will ensure the user has an experience that leaves them engaged and keen to find out more.

8. Websites Not Maintained Won’t Reach Every Client

Think that a desktop website is enough? Think again because mobile devices are taking over and now search engines are considering this to be a crucial factor when ranking websites.

You might need to run regular updates to ensure that your mobile users have a seamless experience. With new devices and 5G technology comes a need to consider your website with active maintenance that keeps your website visible online.

Google runs new updates several times a year, if you don’t stay on top of these to maximise efficiencies you will slide in the rankings for your keywords.

Are Website Maintenace Packages Worth it?

If you were unsure how to do website maintenance or wanted to know what does maintenance packages include then now you have an idea.

Website maintenance is absolutely crucial to the success of your website and you have to keep on top of it. You can learn to use your chosen platform that allows you to run basic updates yourself but a plan of action can help you work through the list and avoid the problems listed above.

If you get it right, you can have confidence in your website and make sure that it is working hard for your business and delivering satisfaction.

Cream Soda media starts website maintenance packages off at £60 to £100 per month for the majority of small to medium-sized businesses and does scale up for more critical cloud-based hosted sites.

CONTACT US

For any advice for your website, contact Cream Soda Multimedia at support@creamsodamedia.com or Tel +44 (0)1276 490448.

chatbot for websites are they good for my business?

Using A Chatbot For Your Website – Good idea?

By | Insights | No Comments

Whether you embrace a chatbot for your website or not, technology that automates much of what we do is taking over.

When it comes to customer satisfaction, consumers want exceptional levels of communication and they want more than just the ability to pick up the phone and make a call. They want answers at the click of their fingers and the solution around that is to opt for chatbots.

What is a Chatbot?

We see Chatbots on social media accounts, website contact pages, but what are they? A Chatbot, which is short for Chat Robot, is an artificial intelligence program that interfaces and interacts with consumers online, whereby they can ask common questions to funnel down queries for internal customer service departments. Using pre-defined scripts they are a smart way to access human behaviour and common feature on many websites.  

They are now so good that many people might think that they have actually spoken with a real person due to the natural way they respond.

They work by responding to questions and answers which means that a human is not required to sit and respond to messages. The aim is to streamline the process of helping consumers find what they need and that means that they can provide answers and point them in the right direction.

Most of us use a Chat Bot every day, either on an Amazon Alexa or via Apple Siri.  As 5G grows and mobile phone online search expands, voice search will be a bigger factor.  Siri and Google Assistant will come more into play for the average user.

Why Should You Use a Chatbot for your Website?

The benefit of a chatbot becoming the online face of your brand or business is crucial because consumers need to feel as though they are receiving a personal experience. This is something our Web Design Surrey UK team values.

Chatbots Improve Customer Engagement

When businesses appear faceless, consumers are known to look elsewhere but a chatbot helps to overcome that problem and engage with them.

With a chatbot that is set up to answer questions about products or services, it enables consumers to feel as though a business is considering their needs and actually values them.

Chatbots Deliver Lead Generation

A chatbot is almost a form of lead generation because when people use a chatbot they might not yet be a part of the sales funnel. With the correct level of interaction and guidance, it’s possible for chatbots to encourage users to take action. 

Chatbots Improve Customer Service

Along with this customer service is also an imperative part of running an eCommerce website. Even customers who have a complaint can be turned around and become loyal with the correct customer service.

Customer service is about understanding and identifying the needs of consumers and a chatbot has to be exceptionally good if it is to excel.

While many businesses are still opting to use human interaction as part of their customer service more are spending money on implementing chatbots to elevate this. 

Chatbots can scale up your business, reach a wider audience, effectively answering queries that you otherwise missed or delayed in responding to on emails & phone calls.

Could Chatbots for your Website be bad?

Despite all of this, it’s crucial to remember just how much damage a chatbot can cause to your brand. Even the most advanced systems cannot handle a change in direction of conversation or pick up on the tone or users and react accordingly.

These are crucial elements that are lost when businesses switch from human interaction to chatbots. If a chatbot fails in delivering a satisfactory solution then there is no doubt that consumers are going to look elsewhere. 

With your pre determined script, you must always assume the customer wishes to phone or text a real person after a few minutes with a chatbot.

Chatbots Can Not Handle Complicated Consumer Queries

Most users of this technology get on fine when the question is direct and the answer is simple. But you will find that still, over 50% of customers do want real contact with you.

Every customer has a different query, complaint, or buying request. You must be flexible to pick these opportunities quickly.

You as a business owner or your customer services team should be there on the phone, to take on which is essentially a pre-filtered caller.

If you are marketing to an older demographic chatbots may not be the ideal solution for your website. A more traditional solution, yet more labour intensive, will be required.

How Much Does It Cost to Make a Chatbot for your website?

If businesses want to enhance customer satisfaction then providing them with information when they need it is vital.

This is where a Chatbot can help and so, they could be seen as an investment. Despite this, they are clever, and with that comes the cost of developing one that can work for your business. 

So, as with anything, there are different types and they range from basic to brilliant. 

A simple chatbot online is basic and responds to basic commands but if any questions are typed beyond the capabilities of then it will fail. 

An advanced ai chatbot uses artificial intelligence to communicate effectively. They can understand language and communicate using suggestions without relying on phrases or keywords being pre-programmed. It is this type of chatbot that can leave visitors feeling as though they have communicated with a real person.

In terms of cost, they can range from free to over £1,000 per month and this all depends on their capabilities.

Therefore, it’s possible to create a chatbot in-house with a basic function. Next, you could choose to blend your time with software to create a chatbot that works well and feels almost real but this will increase in price.

Finally, you could find a chatbot agency that takes care of creating and maintaining chatbots allowing you to benefit from enhanced communication capabilities with customers. However, this can cost several thousands of pounds per month.

For small businesses, we recommend the Chatbot with IBM Watson. An easily integrated plug-in for WordPress websites.  However, it’s very basic and does lag a little, read the reviews carefully.

If you want to start off somewhere it’s a fine place to go.  Cream Soda Media can however build you any bespoke platform that can fit with your brand personality, maintaining UX and Responsive Design of your site

Where Can Chatbots for your website be Used?

What makes chatbots so unique is that they are completely adaptable to a range of scenarios and situations. 

The capabilities of chatbots are wide and varied.  You can discuss products, arrange a meeting, and even find love with a sex chatbot, it’s a very diverse piece of technology.  

In fact, would you believe that during our keyword research for this article ‘dirty chatbot’ and ‘sex chatbot’ were one of the highest searched for? OMG!

Twitch broadcasters are now using chatbots, allowing them to post automatic timed messages about their other social media accounts, and enabling users to chose different types of music whilst viewing the video.

E-commerce shops are also investing in Facebook Chatbots, providing order delivery updates, order tracking, and even showing you another item you may like to buy.  These are clever AI-based programs which can be your motivated salesperson 24/7.

Ultimately, wherever there is interaction with consumers and users it’s possible to use bots and chatbots. So, this can be utilised in relation to food orders, product suggestions, customer support, arranging meetings, and even looking for a particular service.

As technology evolves, more businesses will have the scope to benefit from it.

What Large Websites Are Using Chatbots?

The desire to implement chatbots is growing and now a vast percentage of businesses and brands are turning to the technology to help grow their brand and awareness.

However, if you think that chatbots are used by small businesses then it’s time to think again. In fact, they are used by a vast array of brands, some of which are the biggest in the world.

Estee Lauder  – This brand might be leading the way in the cosmetics industry but they are also leading the way when it comes to chatbot technology. Example below:

Chatbot for your website in action

They have paired it up with augmented reality to allow users to try products before they purchase. It’s a very clever yet unique way of giving consumers even more power over the decisions they make.

Match.com – One of the biggest dating services in the world and yet, you might wonder how it would want or need a chatbot?

The truth is, they’re using this technology to help singles find matches. Known as Lara, she is actually helping people by asking them questions using a conversational approach to determine what they are looking for.

KLM – A big player in the airline industry, KLM uses the technology to help its employees, making it possible for people to find flights. It actually has a cheeky personality but helps take the effort out of booking flights and more.

How Do You Measure the Success of a Chat Bot?

The process of measuring the success of a chatbot is one that is hugely important when determining whether it is adding value to your business.

The activity volume alone will tell you whether people are using it and that is a good indicator. However, it is also worth noting that the time it takes for dialogue to take place is also a clear sign as to whether it is working.

Consider whether users are voluntarily using or are using it after being prompted to use it. 

Bounce rate is commonly related to websites and those users who leave a site without taking action. The same measure can be used for Chatbots. Consider the number of sessions that do not end with a satisfactory outcome. The higher the rate, the more that your bot is not doing the job you want it to.

There are many other considerations to make when measuring success. This can include conversation length, questions per conversation, usage distribution by the hour, and even the retention rate.

Ultimately, all of this data will provide a clear insight into the impact your chatbot is having.

Is a ChatBot the Future for your Website?

It’s a technology that is evolving at an incredible rate and one that is going to change the way that businesses interact with consumers.

As artificial intelligence improves, chatbots are going to become more efficient at dealing with consumers and their problems or queries.

However, at the moment, they are not a complete replacement for human interaction as that is vital for businesses if they are to retain consumers and build brand loyalty, both of which can help them to stand out among competitors.

CONTACT US

For any advice for your next project, contact Cream Soda Multimedia at support@creamsodamedia.com or Tel +44 (0)1276 490448.