Your Destination for Key Largo Web Design

At Lakeview Studios, we offer the absolute best in Key Largo web design. No matter what business you’re in, we’ll modify or create a site that sets you apart from the crowd and keeps customers coming back. And how do we accomplish this, you might ask? Well, that’s an excellent question, one we hear all the time and are always happy to answer. All we need is a few minutes of your time– just long enough prove why we’re the top choice for Key Largo companies who demand a little bit more from their website.

Three Things that Every Great Key Largo Web Design Company Needs

Broadly speaking, a Key Largo Web design has to have three things going for it to help your company reach the next level. First, the designers have to understand the Key Largo area thoroughly. The last company you want designing your site is an outfit out of Miami that’s never bothered leaving the mainland. Your site needs a design team that knows Key Largo just as well as you do.

Second, the company you use has to have the most up to date technical expertise, good writing skills, and lots of creativity. There was a time when any old kind of website would do. It didn’t have to look good or function well; it just had to be out there for people to find. Unfortunately, those days are long gone. In fact, they’ve been gone for over a decade. The internet landscape changes drastically almost every day. That’s why you’ll need a design company that’s skilled enough to keep up.

Last but certainly not least, your web design has to be responsive. Responsive is an important term in internet marketing, one whose meaning depends upon the context it’s used in. Take the user interface, for instance. Your site has to function smoothly at all times, no matter what kind of device your potential customer is using.

A responsive site is also one that evolves and rolls with the changes. While this sometimes refers to functionality and appearance, consistent search engine optimization (SEO) is just as important. In case you’re not familiar with the term, SEO is a set of techniques a digital marketer uses to direct the right traffic to your site. And what is the right traffic? Well, that’s an easy one. The right traffic for your site consists of people who are most likely to buy your products or services. High traffic is fine as far as it goes, but you’ll need sophisticated local SEO for it to make a difference in your bottom line.

How Lakeview Studios Delivers All of This Simultaneously

Lakeview Studios operates out of the Florida Keys, right near where your business operates every day. Our designers and content writers know the Key Largo area very well, and we’ll use that knowledge to benefit your company directly. Working with us is like having a neighbor design and maintain your website. We have a rich foundation of knowledge already in place, and we’ll always ask if there’s anything more we need to find out.

As far as technical expertise goes, we’ve got all the know how we need right at our fingertips. Just as importantly, we keep up with all the constant changes that happen in the world of internet marketing. And whether you’re talking about our designers or content writers, Lakeview’s creativity is second to none. Your site will have a sleek look without going over the top. It will be easy to use even as it pleases the eye. This is just another way of saying we offer the perfect blend of the old, the new, and the effective.

Now let’s talk about responsiveness. We’ve already mentioned the easy user interface you’ll get with our Key Largo web design, but the responsiveness of our sites goes much further than simple usage. Again, it’s all about getting the right traffic. We understand the fundamentals of search engine optimization better than anyone in the business. And we’re talking local SEO, not using keywords that once worked in Alaska.

We’ll do the all the fundamental SEO research in advance. This means we’ll track down exactly what your target audience is searching for right now. Then, we’ll use our arsenal of techniques to put these keywords exactly where they need to be. We’ll weave them subtly into the text of your site, just how search engines like Google prefer them. We’ll also tuck them away in your images, where the search engine algorithms will use them to your benefit.

The end results are impressive. Your site will climb up the results page quicker than you think. Once we get your site up and running properly, it won’t be long before you have just the traffic you need– customers who want the exact products and services that you offer on your site. And this is when things go beyond amazing and become increasingly profitable. Contact us today and we’ll talk about your needs and everything Lakeview Studios can do to fulfill them.

Ask Yourself These 4 Things Before Hiring A Web Design Company!

So, you have plans to build a website?

A perfectly designed website is a face of your business. However, if you go down to choose the web design that is not perfect for your business, you may end up pushing back the customers.

Nevertheless, an attractive website should not only be visually appealing but should also be fully functional. While you can choose any template to build company’s website, hiring a professional will make the task less daunting and easy.

They will not only show you visually-appealing design, but will also look for the things like SEO (Search Engine Optimization), SMO (Social Media Marketing), branding, flexibility, scalability, and etc. that influence the success of a website design.

So, if you have plans to hire a website design company have a look at some of the things you need to know before hiring the one:

Is The Company Experienced?

Ask them, since how long they have been in the business, or how much experience they had in functional areas. You can look for the number of clients, testimonials, quality of their web design portfolio and many other things to gauge their overall experience.

The total business years of a web design service will tell you that the company is stable and is running successfully. Moreover, the number of clients will tell that the company is quite familiar with all kinds of website projects.

Since the professionals will have a good experience, you can rely on them for deadlines and time frames. You can also ask them about:

  • The total number of employees they have?
  • The clients they are working with?
  • Which other services they are offering?

Will You Get The Website Ownership?

If you have trusted an affordable web design company, make sure to ask them about copyright. You should have right to access graphics, texts, logo and other things that are designed for your website.

Ensure that you will get all access to edit and update the content whenever you need.

Do They Offer Ongoing Support?

Is the website design company you are hiring offer the ongoing support? A website has lot more things than just changing content and updating logos. It has so many functions that need professional assistance, so make sure to choose a website design company that offers generous and affordable search engine optimization on an ongoing basis.

With professional support, you won’t need to outsource an additional developer to fix the problems. A professional will help you with your emails

  • The domain name
  • Your website hosting
  • How you can make use of content management system of your website
  • In setting-up ecommerce and much more

Do They Offer The Choice of Platform?

The choice of platform is a must! Whether you want your business to work on CMS or you have plans to choose another platform for your business, there are many website design services like the Website Design and Digital Marketing for your business in Australia that offers ease to pick your platform. You can look for them and ask them to design your website.

So, those were some of the most important things you need to look for before hiring a web design company. Make sure to ask them before hiring the one!

How to Come Up With the Perfect Logo for Your New Business

Many businesses have failed to recognize the many benefits that are related to having the perfect logo. However, as an entrepreneur, this is not a mistake you can afford to make.

A business logo is usually the first visual interaction that your potential customers will have with your business. As such, there are many benefits you can get from having an informative and attractive logo such as brand loyalty and repeat sales.

Benefits of having a strong logo

First of all, your startup business logo can leave your target audience with an excellent first impression. This is especially important for those firms new to the marketplace who stand to gain a lot from creating a lasting impression. Therefore, a logo gives you the perfect opportunity to draw the attention of your target customers. Once you interest customers you then can work your way on building brand loyalty with them.

In addition, a great logo is an essential tool that can help you to a build brand identity. Think of the logos of companies like Apple, Mercedes, Audi, KFC, and Nike you can picture them in your mind because they have built strong brand identities. A vast majority of the population can quickly identify these companies through their logos. This goes to prove just how important a logo is towards a business’s identity.

Years ago, when these companies were startup companies, barely recognizable by anyone they began their brand journey with a good logo. They were able to grow into major companies with the winning combination of a compelling recognizable logo and delivering exceptional goods and services. Consequently, you should consider learning how to make a logo for your new business now at your launch stage.

Here are some helpful tips to help you come up with a great logo that will build your business;

1. Learn about the different type of logos

There is a variety of logos types that companies utilize.

Some only use a symbol as their preferred logo, think Apple. If you would like to use a symbol, it is essential that the symbol stays relevant to the type of services and products that you sell. This type of iconic symbol is popular in technology businesses.

On the other hand, there are some businesses which opt to use a wordmark as their logo, which is their company name in a stylized design. Examples include Coca-Cola and Ray-Ban. It is imperative that you identify which logotype that best fits your needs.

2. Look at your competitors brands

If you find yourself struggling to come up with ideas for your logo, you should borrow some inspiration from the logos of other businesses. Notice I said “borrow” “inspiration” not steal ideas, which you would never consider.

Given that you are competing for the same clients, this is the best way to get a feeling of how your logo should communicate.

However, it is crucial that you remain creative and unique. Do not plagiarize their logo as it will have a counteractive effect of confusing customers and lowering your sales. Instead, look at it in the sense of how much better and more creative their logo could be and make it your own.

3. Let your logo have a message

As you come up with a design for your business’s logo, you should ensure that it is backed by a message. Let the logo embody what your target audience would appreciate knowing about your business. (Remember that this is one of the first interactions that they will have with your company).

The red circle of Target’s logo came from an archery target which told customer that their stores where the perfect location to find all their shopping needs at one location.

This means that the logo needs to be meaningful in that when a customer looks at it, the logo passes a message of what industry you are in and the kind of services that you offer. Therefore, it would be better to keep in mind what your brand is about as you design your logo.

4. Your logo should be simple

It is wrong to have the perception that the more flashy and elaborate your logo is the better it serves its purpose. Simplicity is important both for customer perception and ability to use for multiple purposes such as websites, t-shirts and business cards.

It is true that your logo needs to stand out and be creative. However, it is equally important for people to understand your logo. This can only be achieved if the logo is easy and flexible.

Also, having a clean and functional logo is beneficial in that it can be used across different media. Keep in mind that your logo will not only be on your website but also on newspapers, your social media accounts and on your products. Consequently, the visual graphics of your logo should be functional.

Most professional graphic designers suggest that you view all your logo designs in plain black ink on a white background to be sure that it communicates with its design and not its fancy colors alone. If you like it in black you will love it in color.

5. Choose the logo colors carefully

Other than the image or name for your logo, the color that you choose plays a vital role. Do not hurriedly select a bright color because it entices more eyes. It would be better off if you pick a color that that is symbolic of what your business is about. Learn about how you can use color power to boost your marketing.

Also, when choosing colors, you should try and limit your logo to three colors. Having more than three colors will turn out to be costly when it comes to printing. For this reason, you should consider how much you would like to spend when creating your logo.

6. Seek help from professionals graphic designers

As an entrepreneur, generating a logo by yourself can prove daunting. Therefore, if you find yourself experiencing any difficulty, consider hiring a professional logo designer. Recently I had a logo made for my business using a logo design contest at the crowdsource site 99designs – read about my experience in my review of 99designs.

Whereas this means facing additional costs, it is beneficial in that you will do everything in the right way.

If you are on a budget, you should hire the services of freelance logo designers as opposed to going to a design firm. They are a cheaper alternative.

In conclusion, creating an impressive logo for your startup business is essential. As much as it will not guarantee you instant success, it is the perfect way to build your brand by attracting more customers. Ultimately, a good logo will ensure that your business experiences significant growth.

Bio:

Marsha Kelly is a serial entrepreneur who has done time in corporate America, selling her first business for more than a million dollars. She has learned what products and services work in business today, and she shares her experiences on her best4Business blog at https://best4businesses.com/. You can learn from her experiences from shopping the internet for tools, supplies, and information to build your business and improve your finances.

 

Why Less Is More Concept Gaining Grounds in the Web Design Landscape?

You are a core part of this evolving change. Aren’t you? Leading a simple life makes you more happy and joyous compared to the decorated life. The same is now implied in the web design landscape.

Simplicity is the key to the elegant website. The more you understand this, the less you focus on ornating it. “More the Better” concept is bygone. Today, “Less Is More” concept is gaining grounds. Users prefer clean designs which include less UI web components. Google homepage is the perfect example of this concept. The team focused more on what users are looking for and not on the design. So, they turned out with a plain design; company’s logo with a search bar. Hence, it is safe to say that minimalist web design offers higher user engagement rate, easy navigation, and makes it more appealing.

What all factors prove Less Is More concept is picking up the steam in the web design landscape”?

The Use of Whitespace

It is also known as the Negative space. Though being labeled as negative, it has a positive impact on the web visitors. For instance; Amazon, the #1 eCommerce site worldwide has millions of products of vivid brands to shelve in still, it provides a smooth experience to the users. The reason behind it is, Amazon focuses on minimalist design. Though the homepage displays featured products along with various offers and deals yet, the experience is good. Sufficient space to tour and let users know what is trending in the store.

Removing unnecessary elements from the website is not the designer’s goal. But doing so extends the click area for users. Also, the white space enables designers to highlight the key content to seize users’ attention. This automatically improves the user experience and upsurge the user-engagement rate. But remember; don’t eschew all the bells and whistles from the site. Doing so will thwart the purpose of using minimalist web design and it will lose its essence. As it is known as white space, it’s not white all the time, designers use various colors to add life to the vacant space.

Color Schemes

Each color defines its purpose of use and that’s why it has a great value while designing a website. Be wise in choosing the right color for your website. For instance; Facebook, the #1 social media networking site uses blue color to represent its domain because blue is the color for professionals and corporate. When you look at the Facebook homepage, it is simple. The use of the components is minimal. But the color blue used in the logo and other areas makes it look beautiful and elegant.

To focus on simplicity aspect, various web designers use contrasting colors. Therefore, when you have nothing to add, you have color palettes to play with. If a background color is darker in shade, the font color is dull or lighter in shade or it may be vice-a-versa. This is the best practice to enhance the look of the site and take the users’ focus to the significant information or required actions.

Font Styles

As said by Jeffrey Zeldman, “Content precedes design. Design in the absence of content is not design, it’s decoration”. You know this very well. Don’t you? To complement the modular design, apart from bold font styles, ornate or thin font styles also zest up the look of the website. This truly depends on the design template.

Just as contrasting color schemes, large or bold font style increases website’s readability resulting in enhancing the web experience. The main purpose of experimenting with different font style is to incline users’ attention towards the content and help them understand the context. Using large or bold font styles offers a clean line on the web page, the letters are exactly the same in stroke size while the white space between each letter enhances users’ reading ability. Also, using such font styles won’t affect the performance of the website. Therefore, it can be a better option in replacement to images.

Final Thoughts

User experience being the main focus, “More the Better” concept did not live up to the expectations. The use of unnecessary images on the homepage, animated videos and flashy elements not only slow down the performance but also ruined the web experience. That’s why designers adopted “Less Is More” concept. With fewer UI web components in use, it naturally enhances the experience of web making the website look refreshing and improves user interaction. Hence proved that “Less Is More” concept is picking the grounds in the web design arena.

Author Bio

Kim Smith is a Content Consultant at Goodfirms.co, a full-fledged research firm for top web design companies. She’s been journeying through the world of content marketing for more than 4 years. Her experience spans in areas like mobile apps, start-ups and social media. Online you can find her on twitter: @contactkim11

7 Reasons to Hire a Professional Graphic Designer

Graphic designing has become a fundamental part of today’s world. It’s surrounding us in a myriad of forms, both in a virtual sense and in print. Graphic designing can make your brand become distinguishable in the jam-packet market, making it look more professional and introduce your services or products to broad audiences.

With that in mind, a lot of companies decide to take the responsibility of graphic designing on themselves, with little or no knowledge at all. The internet offers many solutions for those who want to cut down their costs, so business owners go for free logo online creators, stock images and other quick fixes.

However, that might not be such a clever idea if you’re thinking about standing out in the crowd. If you want to maintain professionalism and raise uniqueness, you’re in the need of a professional graphic designer. We’ll provide you with some additional reasons to help you consider this idea.

1. Save your time

When you’re already overwhelmed by your work, why take another responsibility? Time is a valuable thing in today’s world and should be used cautiously. If you’re running a business, the chances are you won’t have enough time to be really dedicated to graphic designing, since it would take you years to master the complex graphic design work.

Having a professional handle this for you will take loads of work off your back. A professional already possesses all the necessary skills, leaving you room to be focused on other important tasks. Graphic design professionals can put all of their focus on your projects and deliver the desired results in less time.

2. Save your money

A professional can also prevent you from making sky-high costs as they are familiar with the most effective ways to keep your costs at a minimum. An experienced graphic designer would know where to find the best resources needed and which programs to use for the assigned projects.

3. Stand out

It is difficult to get attention in a crowded market, but a professional can assure your recognition amongst competitors. Following the latest trends and thinking outside the box can provide the much-needed uniqueness for your business. They can offer you creativeness and a fresh perspective and put an emphasis on the things you didn’t have in mind, which will help you attract the target audience along the way.

4. Maintain a professional image

This may be the most important factor when hiring a professional designer. Presenting your business in a visually appealing way is crucial because it guarantees a trustworthy image. Designers know how to combine all the essential elements to create a great visual representation of your company.

5. Achieve desired results

A professional designer will make sure to understand your business goals, as well as your audience, so you don’t need to leave anything to chance. Their responsibility is to brainstorm how to convey your message in the most effective way and deliver a wholesome and appealing website that represents your business in a good light.

6. Attract new clients

A successful website incorporates perfect load time, engaging imagery and good navigation, and will work properly on all devices and in different web browsers. All of these segments help you attract new clients, so it’s important to have a highly functional site to speak for itself. Without an expert dealing with your website, you could pass up a great opportunity for future customers as a result of a bad introduction.

7. Ensure consistency

Inconsistency in business can make you look rather unprofessional. A bad design may influence your clients to think you provide inconsistent services. Your brand is a reflection of your business, so you have to be careful about what kind of a message it sends. A professional graphic designer will pay attention to the smallest details and will have the right tools to ensure you credibility. Creating a style guide is highly important if you’re planning on expanding your business and a good designer can help you achieve that.

To conclude, appearance is crucial in the business world and communication is becoming progressively more visual every day, so online success is critical. Ultimately, if you want to wow your clients and beat down the competition, you should absolutely go for a professional to make your business really stand out!

8 Important Things To Consider Before Choosing The Right Color For Your Website

In today’s world, it’s very important to have a unique brand identity and for it to be visually recognizable. Not only will it help you build trust with your customers, but it will also help you spread brand awareness more easily. And there’s no better way to make yourself stand out from the crowd then through a smart choice of colors for your website.

Colors are extremely important when it comes to making your website likable for your customers and the choice of your color scheme should always be near the top of your priorities when it comes to web design. Here’s our list of eight things you need to know about when choosing the color scheme for your website.

Colors Affect Emotions

When users enter your website, they start judging it based on their subconscious and how the environment affects it. This basically means that upon entering the website, your users will be judging it mostly based on the color scheme you’re using. This is why it’s important to get familiar with the psychological effects different colors have. A good place to start is to get to know the right colors for your CTA buttons and how they affect the conversion rates.

Pick a Dominant Color

The color you pick as your dominant color is also your brand’s color and it should always be embedded into the website. A dominant color doesn’t mean it’s the color that’s represented the most, but the one that will hold its hue regardless of its surroundings. Coca Cola’s dominant color is red, but McDonald’s is actually yellow. This is the color you’ll be using on all your promotional material and how your target audience will remember you when they think about your brand. Picking a dominant color is a strategical choice and the one you’ll have to make with a lot of consideration.

Gender Differences

For this step, you’ll need to figure out whether your business is targeting women or men, or maybe even both. This is because different colors appeal to men and women, with some of the colors being in common.

Women like: Blue, Green, Purple

Women dislike: Orange, Gray, Brown

Men like: Blue, Black, Green

Men dislike: Orange, Purple, Brown

You can see that both genders are likely to be positively affected by blue and green color, while they both dislike orange and brown. This means that you’ll have a better chance hitting and affecting your targeted audience if you avoid orange and brown, while using green or blue. If you are favoring one gender over another as your target audience than it’s even easier to set up the color scheme according to this.

Accent Colors

Now that you have your dominant color picked out, it’s time to pick accent colors. These are used mostly to attract attention to certain parts of the website, while also giving the website more freshness compared to it being in single color. However, matching and mixing colors might prove a difficult task for most people, which is why almost any freelance web designer will get the hang of it through trial and error. With dominant and accent colors now on board, you are already half-way towards positively affecting your website visitors.

Choosing a Background Color

A background color is what creates the atmosphere on your website. It’s always chosen carefully based on the industry you’re in. An e-store will almost always use a neutral color so that they can draw attention to what really matters to them – products. On the other hand, design or fashion websites will usually be more graphic intensive because their agenda is to promote their creativity. Choose a background color that matches your industry and niche and make sure that it goes well with your dominant and accent colors.

Different Age Groups Prefer Different Colors

You probably didn’t know, but people change their color preferences over time and with age. Take a look at Joe Hallock’s Colour Assignment Study from 2003 which explains in detail how different age groups look on different colors. What you need to do is take it into consideration after you’ve figured out the age range of your target audience. Leave nothing to chance when it comes to picking colors for your website and you’ll be well on your way towards success.

Number of Colors Used

Most websites use three colors for maximum effect, but you can go for more than that if you feel the need. To break it down, it usually looks like this:

Dominant (or primary) color – around 60%

Secondary color – around 30%

Accent color – around 10%

Whatever your primary and secondary colors are, you’ll want your accent colors to be in contrast so they can do their job and highlight what’s important on the website.

Online Tools to Help You With Your Color Choice

If you’re still unsure about how to approach the issue (and even if you’re not), you can use a number of online tools to help you choose the best colors for your website. Adobe Color is a great tool which can help you choose your whole color scheme based on the dominant color that you picked. It takes a little time to get the hang of how the tool works, but once you do it will become absolutely invaluable. If you don’t like it, you can go with a tool like Colorspire instead.

Final Words

There’s no denying the fact that good usage of colors has helped build a number of brands throughout the decades and it can do the same for you. The choice of colors comes through careful consideration and strategy, and not by accident. By reading this guide you now have a good head start, but the most important thing is to experiment yourself and to do a lot of testing as well. Only that way you will come up with a uniquely colored website that is going to attract people’s attentions.

7 Do’s and Don’ts of Email Signature Marketing

Did you know that every single day, approximately 144.8 billion emails are exchanged? And what’s more mind-blowing is that 84% of this mails end up in your spam folder. Don’t you think this kind of makes it obvious that many people are totally unaware of the aspects that are accountable for great marketing strategy?

You may think nobody even notices an email signature but the smartest online entrepreneurs will tell you otherwise.

It is more than just a decoration, an email signature is your identity to somebody you want to build a professional collaboration with and who knows simply nothing about you.

In fact, reports have shown that successful email marketing campaigns can garner 4300 percent ROI. Below, we will discuss 7 do’s and don’ts that’ll help you reach your marketing goals.

Do Find a Good Layout: This is the first and most important step for creating an impressive email signature that’ll promote your business. A good email signature should be informative and neat.

What information you’d need to put in the signature will depend on the kind of business you are promoting. Remember that everyone is a fan of simplicity.

So, keep the information to-the-point.

Don’t Clutter It with Too Much Information: There is absolutely no point in using an email signature to write your autobiography. If you overstuff your signature with truckloads of links and information, that would be a major turn-off for your potential clients.

The chances of anyone opening the never-ending list of URLs in your signature is too less.

Do Include Social Media Links: 21st century is all about making your presence felt over the web and social media platforms have leveled the ground for everyone. If you or your company has no presence on social media, people will find your business shady. That’s plain psychology.

Adding Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin links to your signature will help you generate more traffic and most importantly, your business will be talked about, that’s the goal, right?

Don’t Use Multiple Fonts and Colors: Minimalism is in vogue right now. Treat your email signature like a signature only, it is not a medium to show-off your graphic designing skills.

In order to avoid making the design overly complicated, limit the number of color palettes in the signature and always use only one type of font.

Using the same font you use for writing the email for the signature as well gives it a nice touch of professionalism. Choose a type and size of font that’s easy to read, e.g. Ariel, Calibri, Tahoma, Verdana, Gill Sans and a few more.

Do not use Comic Sans at any cost because you wouldn’t want to come across as an unprofessional, unserious business person, would you? To make the design clean and eye-catching, again, opt for the minimalist approach.

A pro tip is to take inspiration from the colors present in your logo. This will help your clients and users connect to your brand more effectively.

Do Include Your Blogs: Including your blogs, Podcasts, Webinar in your signature is also a smart marketing tactic in the digital era. If you keep adding fresh content on your blog and hyperlink it to your email, the recipients will get an easy access to new content and will keep coming back for more.

Don’t Use Personal Quotes Unnecessarily: If you’re promoting a serious business, you have to create a solid impact on the email recipients. The best way to do is include information related to the brand only. Using personal quotes, unless you are a globally recognized celebrity, would be over-the-top and kick of tacky as well.

Do Keep the Font Palette Small: Previously, we spoke about keeping the color palette small, now we will talk about the importance of keeping the font palette even smaller. The whole point of chalking out an impressive email signature is to increase brand awareness.

Using different fonts for highlighting different texts would make it look like school project of a student who ran out of materials to write about. If you want to get a flexible typeface that can be customized according to your liking, the internet has a plethora of options for you.

Don’t Add Long Disclaimers: Inserting a long disclaimer in email signatures is a very common mistake people make. Now you might argue that it’s better to be safe than sorry. Well, sorry to pop the bubble here.

No legal advisor will ever tell you that email disclaimers hold any weight. Its function is strictly limited to just annoying people.

Do Use Dividers: Use dividers to keep the contents of the signature organized and maintain a strong hierarchy. Full-bleed dividers will help the most important pieces of information in your signature like Name, Contact Info highlighted so that they readily capture the attention.

Don’t Jam It with Social Media Buttons: This might counterintuitive to our suggestion to use your email signature as a medium to general more traffic to your social media pages. Having said that, overdoing anything in an email signature has more demerits than otherwise.

Tailor your signature according to your target customers and the brand. Use maximum 4 social media buttons (use icons instead of URLs) to keep the space uncluttered.

Do Use Professional Headshots: Using a headshot instead of a full body photo (do not use selfies) is another tip you must follow to create lasting impact on the recipients. Make sure to look professional in the photo, dress in formals and keep the hair well-groomed, look directly at the camera and pose against a not-so-flashy background.

Headshots are best of email signatures because it highlights your face and as the image size would be small, it will take less time to load.

Don’t Use Too Many Images: Once again, let’s stick to “the lesser, the better” policy. Including too many images in the signature can make the emails end up in the Spam folder. Limit it to maximum 2 images. The pictures you choose should be relevant to the service you’re promoting.

Do Make the Signature Mobile-friendly: Everyone has smartphones these days and the number of people opening emails from their phones is ever-increasing. Did you know that 48% of the total mails delivered everyday are opened on phones. That’s something to take note of.

To kickstart a successful email signature marketing, you have to pay attention to the scale of your design. For small screens, you need to optimize the size of the logos, images, shorten the long website links and email addresses. If you are going to use a wide logo, make sure to use a vertical template.

Don’t Overcrowd with Too Much Content: As you might have already remembered by heart now, less is more when it comes to designing a cool and catchy email signature. Including irrelevant content like quotes and sagas of your achievements will only backfire.

How to Make Your Business Blog Look More Professional

Your business blog has a lot of important jobs to do. You want to use it to establish your business as an authority in its niche, to keep in touch with current and future customers, and turn your readers into buyers. In order to do that, you need to have a blog that inspires trust. Your followers deserve a clean, professional looking blog. You’re trying to win them over, and how much care and attention you put into your blog just might be the most important factor in that process.

Choose the Right Color Scheme

Colors are more important than a lot of people realize. If they’re all mismatched, a cohesive theme is lost. If your blog is mostly black and white, it may look poorly maintained. Certain color schemes evoke certain feelings. Colors should match your brand and be consistent throughout your blog. You want enough contrast between your background and font colors in order to make the blog easy to read. Navigational features should be colored to stand out, and areas of interest should pop against plain content.

Improve Your Graphics

If you’re relying heavily on things like stock images and text tables, your readers are going to notice. You need custom graphics. For blog posts that feature a lot of information, it’s worth translating some of that information into an infographic. Since most people are visual learners, you want to make sure you’re paying enough attention to the visuals they’re getting. If you’re not a graphic designer, you can always hire one on Gumtree to refresh the graphics you currently have and generate new ones for posts.

Make Navigation Simple

You want your readers to click around on your business blog. The longer they’re there, the more interested they are in what you’re doing. If they can’t find the rest of your content, there’s no reason for them to stick around. Make sure your blog is highly organized. Get rid of clickables, widgets, and features that add no value to your blog. Keep your menus sleek and simple, and make sure all of your navigation is optimized for mobile. Since about half of your blog’s traffic will come from smartphones, you need to be sure everyone can use it.

Have a Thorough “About” Page

Who is behind your blog? How are your readers to know that you aren’t some lonesome guy or gal camping out in a basement? Make sure your “About Us” page features valuable information about your business. Let them see addresses, phone numbers, and contact information. Feature short profiles on the employees responsible for running the blog. It shows that you’re committed enough to what you do that you’re willing to put your name on it, and reinforces the concept that you’re all real people. This is great for both trust and professionalism.

Be Careful With Ads and Clutter

Blogs that are littered with advertisements, whether they’re for your own products and services or general ads placed for revenue, often translate as eyesores. If you have a lot of junk all over the place, your blog might seem less like a valuable resource and more like a clickbait scam. If you want people to take you seriously, you need to be very careful with your advertisements. If your readers feel like all you care about is making money, they’ll lose sight when it comes to the value you actually provide.

Always be willing to accept feedback from your readers. Make sure you’re active in the comments section. If they don’t like the way something looks or works on their blog, they’ll probably tell you. Be a good listener, and be willing to make improvements when your readers suggest them.

As part of a small marketing team, Margaret Austin, likes to write about digital marketing trends and anything that helps entrepreneurs to grow their businesses. She’s interested in photography and modern art.

6 Best Practices for Writing Mobile-friendly Content

Mobile-friendly content can make or break your message. No lie. The proof is in the stats below.

The year 2015 was when the US market hit the mobile tipping point , with mobile-only users exceeding desktop-only users for the first time. Globally, the number of mobile users overtook  folks on desktops for the first time in 2014.

Approximately 59% of smartphone users expect companies to make their websites mobile-friendly . Meanwhile, Google says 61% of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site they had trouble accessing, with 40% turning to a competitor’s site instead.

So here are the lessons we can take away from this:

a) Mobile is a very important way to consume content.

b) People expect their mobile journeys to be simple, intuitive and clever. They will punish sites that look bad on mobile.

Most conversations about mobile accessibility start with the design. Easy navigation, simpler templates, and adaptive fonts are all being employed to make things easier to read. But as a copywriter , it’s worth remembering that you too have a role to play.

It’s not just the design that needs to be mobile-friendly, but the content has to be, too. Your writing needs to work well with mobile. Here’s how:

No big words

Most wireframes and web mock-ups are designed for the big screen, and your vocabulary looks amazing sitting in the middle of an expansive page. But those big words will often get hyphenated in a smaller mobile screen, and will just look ugly. Throw a few of them in there, and they’ll disrupt the reading experience and increase bounce rates.

No long sentences

Same principle as above, really. Real estate for copy is really at a premium. Long sentences take up too much room. Try and keep your sentences short – and concise. This doesn’t mean mangling them. Instead, go over them repeatedly to weed out weak words and flab. Ask yourself how you can say the same thing elegantly in fewer words.

Chunk up your text

Broadsheet newspapers and print magazines get away with unbroken text. Marketing websites don’t have that luxury. Your viewers will want to get the gist of what you say in a hurry. Think of it as the bite, the snack and the meal approach.

The bite

Some readers just want the bottom line. So summarize everything you’re about to say in a heading carrying a strong message.

The snack

Some mobile readers have a bit more time. Think of them as slightly hungry for content. They’re happy to read a paragraph that gives them your main talking points. Here, never just take the top paragraph from your content and post just that. Instead, take the time to create a two- to three-line summary that captures the gist of what you’re saying.

The meal

Be hospitable and offer up a full meal for guests who are really hungry for your content. The meal is your full argument, presented well and carrying supporting facts and figures to make your case.

This approach is very powerful in that it lets users select how hungry they are (i.e., the amount of content they want to consume). You’ve got something for everyone, no matter their appetite.

The trick is to have the bite, the snack and the meal in the same screen or document. So, the bite can be the heading, the snack an introduction (or conclusion), and the meal the full body text.

Create lists and bullets

Your high school teacher might have thought numbered lists were a sign of laziness. But on mobile screens, lists and bullet points are a very effective way of linking together related content without using too many words. Lists also introduce white space, which tends to look good on a mobile screen.

Short paragraphs with sub-headings

You’ll see we’re developing a bit of a theme. On mobile – and in fact, on any device – it’s a good idea to structure well, so readers can skim. They will then spend more time on the bits that appeal, and speed-read the rest. Put breaks in the text. And write brief sub-heads that let readers know what they’re about to read.

Go simple

So, here’s your “snack” for this piece. If there’s one thing that you should take away, it’s the need to go simple . It’s the one great trick to writing more effective copy, and not just on mobile. Remember – your audience is reading your marketing copy because they want solutions to their pain points. So give them their answers – as directly and fluently as possible.

AUTHOR BIO

Hisham Wyne is an award-winning copywriter, brand consultant and content creator based in Dubai. He has over a decade’s experience in helping brands get their messages right. From crisp web copy and zippy brochures to in-depth company profiles and analytical annual reports, Hisham makes words work for you – so you can sell better, gain visibility, and give your brand a unique voice.

During his time in the Middle East, Hisham has collaborated extensively with blue-chip companies including Twitter, Microsoft, LinkedIn, Harley-Davidson and Aston Martin, and helped government concerns such as the Dubai Internet City, in5 and the Dubai Design District.

8 Online Resources to Learn Infographic Design

If you would have a choice between reading one page of content or scanning the information from a graph or pie chart, which one would you prefer? Seems like a question with very obvious answer, right? Well, your audience would give the same answer too!

No matter which segment of the population your readers/customers belong to or whether they are vigorous readers or not, everybody would rather have the entire information presented to them in a pictorial or summarized form than reading long paragraphs.

And it is actually ironic right now because I am going to tell you about the infographics through a content-based article. Well, at least you will know to use more of infographics and how to create them for your next piece of writing if you read this.

What are infographics?

A pictorial or visual representation of data and information is called infographic. It could be in the form of chart, map, graph, illustration, picture or image among other visual aids. Their attention requiring span is less, which makes them more preferable by the millennium. The reader can actually scan the entire data presented in the infographics within seconds and get a better understanding of the message that is being conveyed.

How are Infographics Created?

Since you are going to represent data in your infographics, the process is actually more about thinking how will you structure the data before you actually get to create a design. Just follow the following 5 steps and you will be able to create a perfect infographic for your audience:

  1. Conceptualize

The first and most significant step is to think of a good concept, the answer or explanation of which can be represented in the form of a story and which people would actually be interested in knowing about.

  1. Analyze Data

You would be required to extract the data that you have and simplify it in such a matter so that it can be presented in a few words or using symbols. If you will write long sentences in your infographic too, it will sabotage its purpose.

  1. Visual Structuring

It is very important that you choose a visual metaphor that goes well with your audience as well as the content that you are going to present. Don’t just make it easy for readers, it should be attractive too.

  1. Design

Once you have the image of how you want the infographic to look like and where will the information go, you can get started with designing it using many online tools, some of which are available for free also.

  1. Socialize

The major objective behind creating infographics is that they are easily shareable and often manage to create a viral effect as compared to plain content. So, publish it on major social media platforms with relevant captions.

Trending Infographic Tools

We just discussed above that you have many online tools available that can help you learn and create some really good infographics to serve your requirements. However, there are so many options that you might be confused that which one should you use.

You don’t have a reason to be doubtful anymore! Because after testing and using these tools, I have compiled a list of 8 best online resources that help in designing some amazing infographics.

  1. Easel.ly (https://www.easel.ly/)

With minimal data skills, you can create visuals using this tool by connecting with the huge community of designers, journalists, and developers. In fact, it is one of the most widely used online tool by the designers throughout the industry.

  1. Infogr.am (https://infogr.am/)

If you have the data that you want to present using an infographic stored in your system in an organized manner, then you certainly cannot find a tool that you let you import all the information and create visuals in the minimum span of time.

  1. Piktochart (https://piktochart.com/)

Even if you are new to designing, this tool will make you feel like a pro with its step-to-step guidance of how to create infographics. There are thousands of themes available to be used by everybody which are designed by the professionals.

  1. Wordle (http://www.wordle.net/)

Word clouds feel like the graffiti in the informatics world and you can create some really cool word clouds using this tool. You can make your clouds more appealing using different font styles, color schemes, and layouts before sharing them with the world.

  1. Photo Stats (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/photo-stat/id668484271?mt=8)

An exclusive app for iPhone users, this tool lets you create infographics using the photos present in your iPhone storage. Though it is a paid app with minimal charges, it is definitely worth trying owing to the fact that it is pretty fun and simple to use.

  1. Gliffy (https://www.gliffy.com/)

The statistical data can be quite boring to present and nobody really likes to read those boring figures too, right? This infographic tool lets you create network diagrams, floor plans, flow charts and other technical data executions in quite an easy manner.

  1. StatPlanet (https://www.statsilk.com/software/statplanet)

We are talking about actually a highly acclaimed tool by the professionals when we name StatPlanet. You can create interactive graphs and maps which are full of features and can be customized later with so much ease using this tool that you will have to use it to believe me.

  1. Canva (https://www.canva.com/)

If you are looking for an all-inclusive tool that would have a huge library of fonts and images to choose from, easy photo editing tools and drag-and-drop function so that you can easily import the data from your system, then Canva is certainly the perfect tool to match your requirements.

These tools will let you design infographics for your professional meetings, class presentations and your websites/blogs with so much of ease that you would not even require a seasoned designer to create the appealing informational images to serve your purpose. So, what are you waiting for? Install these tools and start creating!

About the Author:

Ashish Sharma is a Key Account Manager, looking after Marketing Strategies and building new business tie-ups at WeDigTech – One of the Top Rated Mobile App Development company in India with sales office in US and Europe. Focused on helping enterprises StartUps from domestic to MNCs.