Mobile Search Stats On The Rise: Are You Ready?

The number of people using their mobile phones today to find businesses, services, and products, are at an all-time high. In fact, according to Smart Insights, 80% of Internet users own a smartphone and use it to access the Internet. With mobile search stats on the rise, this makes having both a mobile-friendly website and an effective mobile marketing plan essential to your business and your conversion rates.

Mobile Design

Mobile websites are designed to serve as an adapted version of your desktop website, in order to fit the mobile device that your user is using. There are many advantages to using a mobile site including benefits such as: user-friendly navigation, clean visual design, operates at a faster navigation speed, and instant mobile marketability by attracting both new and repeat customers.

Responsive Design

Responsive websites are developed by using a single website that automatically adjusts itself to fit any device that your user is using, based on the screen size and platform. Responsive web design uses code like HTML5, which provides benefits such as: more fluid grids, flexible images, and better screen resolution.

Mobile Marketing

Due to the increase in number of smartphone and tablet usage, not only is it important to have a mobile-friendly website, but it is as equally important that you have an effective SEO and digital marketing strategy, especially since most of your traffic will be through the use of a mobile device.

According to Marketing Land, by 2019, mobile advertising will represent 72% of all US digital ad spending, making advertising online to desktops a thing of the past, strictly focusing on marketing to mobile devices.

If you are interested in learning more about how Windy City Web Designs can help you optimize for mobile, as well as create a mobile marketing strategy specific for your business, then contact us fir more information today.

Does Your Website Need A Redesign?

With websites playing an intricate role in today’s life, it is important for your business to have a good website. When your potential customers visit your site, they want to be able to easily navigate your site, which in turn will help you stand out from the competition.

While you may not recognize if your website needs a redesign or not, here are a few reasons you may wish to have Windy City Web Designs help you:

Make your website responsive. More people are viewing the web and looking for your businesses through mobile devices and tablets than they do through computers. When your website isn’t responsive, the likeliness your website will be visited decreases. With a responsive design, your website will detect the phone or tablet, automatically adjusting the screen to fit their specific device, which makes this a more pleasurable experience.

Add to your website. By adding things such as blogs and forums, the chances you will attract visitors will increase, especially when it is informational and beneficial to your visitors.

Keep it modern. With dated websites being clearly evident today, your visitors may choose modern over outdated, leaving your website for your competition.

Get connected. If your website is not utilizing social media, you are likely missing out on potential visitors, which can mean business. Social media is an effective way to keep in contact with your potential businesses, as well as keep them coming back for more.

Windy City Web Designs can help to ensure your website is fresh and modern, keeping you a step ahead of your competition. Contact us for more information today.

Defining Link Building And Why It’s Needed

With Windy City Web Designs we specialize in link-building for many companies, which we create websites for. It’s often impossible to build links if the website is not well optimized. Link building is the majority of what we do. We have many other things that are in between this process to make sure your site does show up on other sites.

The basic description of a link builder’s activity is depending upon tactics, strategies, linkable assets, and the target audience. Link Building is fairly simple, and sometimes people think it is too complicated to do. What you need to do first is to find a website you want a link from, and to figure out how to get the person behind the site to link.

It’s good to sit down with your team and go over your client’s websites and do a little brainstorming. Discuss other types of sites that would be both relevant and authoritative, that would have a captive audience within the target demographic. Everyday try to think of a new way to be creative way to engage your client’s target audiences and the websites that they are visiting frequently.

When you start to work with a variety of business from Orthodontics, Dermatology, Massage Therapist, Doctors, Adventure Camps. Many others you start to get to know who they are and finding out what there likes and dislikes are. You meet there needs and wants as to what they want for their website.

What link building does will determine a company’s intrinsic value, unique selling proposition, target audience, linkable assets and industry presence. Link building is the intelligent promotion of a website, page or asset that will give the primary intention of a building a link.

This is about the understanding of the website you’re representing. You the company know how valuable they are worth linking too. You also know and understand their target website, and their audience, and why it’s valuable for them to link to your client. Then lastly you contact them and specifically outline both why your client’s website has that certain value and why it helps their site or audience to link to your client.

For more information about Link Building contact, Windy City Web Designs.

How To Improve The Speed Of Your Website

It is a question that has had website owners asking for years, “how can I make my website run faster?” And there actually multiple ways to improve the speed of your website. After ruling out the main reasons why your website would be running slow: the server, the connection, and the client, its time to look at the design aspects. Making sure you have an optimized website will increase the chances of a viewer staying on your website longer. People don’t like waiting for a website to load and will leave if it is taking too long.

Images: The size of an image has a great impact on how fast or slow your website is performing. In order to get a faster website it is a good idea to compress the images that you put on your website and to remember to specify the image dimensions as well. Compressing these images will optimize your site, which will make it run at a faster speed.

Javascript: When running a javascript code on an HTML page it is important to remember where to put the code. Putting it in the wrong spot could increase the chances of your website to start running slower.  All javascript operations should be placed in the footer of your HTML page or just before the ending body tag. Doing this will allow your website to be displayed even if the javascript is still loading.

Using CSS3: Using an external style sheet can keep all of your code organized within your pages and can help your website run faster than if it was all coded in just HTML5.  Keeping all of your CSS code in one document will keep everything condensed and be easier to load for your server.

For more information regarding the speed of your website or if you need help with your website running at a faster speed, contact the professionals at Windy City Web Designs.

How Responsive Design Can Help Your Online Marketing Campaign

Responsive web design has gained in popularity and importance over the past year. Not only is it beneficial to your Internet presence, but is also critical because it allows for those millions of mobile and tablet users to have a more user-friendly experience when visiting your website, keeping you ahead of your competition.

What Is Responsive Design?

Responsive web design is an approach in which a website is designed to respond to the user’s behavior, regardless of what type of device is being used. For example, if someone is visiting your website from their mobile device, the will detect what device is being used and adjust itself for optimal viewing by the user.

How Responsive Design Will Help Your Online Marketing Efforts?

  • Content Marketing- When implementing content marketing campaigns such as blogs or newsletters, your users will be able to read your posts much easier with responsive design, as well as use their social sharing buttons.
  • Search Marketing- With responsive design, your users will be able to click on a specific page link, and be directed to the desired page, instead of being redirected to your homepage, allowing for a much more user-friendly experience.
  • Social Media Marketing- Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter are not only good ways to interact with your customers and build your brand, but they are perhaps the most inexpensive way to implement a marketing campaign. This can especially be effective when your users wish to visit your social media page from their mobile device.

The Other Benefits Of Responsive Design

  • Increase your sales and conversion rates.
  • Consolidate all of your tracking and analytics.
  • The ability to manage and maintain a single site.
  • Increase your audience.

Take your website to the next level with a compatible responsive web design, contact Windy City Web Designs to get a customized quote today!

The Best Web Design Tips For Small Businesses

Running a small business in today’s world is no small feat. In order to stay ahead of the competition it is best to be on top of how you are marketing your business, especially when it comes to running a website. If you do not have a website that will attract and hold your customers’ attention, you are in jeopardy of falling behind your competitors.

Without a website, you are missing an incredible opportunity to engage and connect with your customers. In order to ensure you are doing what is best for your business, here are some of the best web design tips when designing a website or your small business:

Your website should reflect your brand. What are you trying to sell? What do you want your customer’s first impression to be? Be sure to keep your design fresh, simple, and unique. If your site looks similar to others, especially your competition’s, then you risk he chance of being forgotten, instead of making that all-important lasting impression. Your homepage should do all of these things, while appropriately representing your brand and your message you wish to communicate to your customers and visitors.

Showcase your products and services. As with any product regardless if it is on the shelf or on the Internet, you have only a few seconds to capture your audience’s attention. In order to effectively do so, your services and products need to be easily found on your homepage in order to ensure there is no confusion to the customer, or difficulty finding what they are looking for. Easy navigation is a must and will help to provide your visitors with a user-friendly experience and keep them from leaving your site for another.

Make your content count. Content rules when it comes to finding your website amongst all the others in the search engines. Quality content and links on your website are key to helping your chances of being found in search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Since content does need to be fresh in order to be effective, it is important to keep all your information up-to-date and incorporate content rich items such as blogs on your site.

Use responsive design. In a world where smartphones and tablets rule, it is critical to ensure your website can be easily accessed by these types of devices. It is best to consult with a professional web design firm if you are interested in incorporating responsive design into your website.

Windy City Web Designs is a leader in web design and development, specializing in building search engine friendly websites, taking businesses to the next level. Contact us to get started on a unique solution to fit your business’s needs.

4 Reasons Your Business Needs A Responsive Website

Like many small business owners, you may believe your business cannot benefit from having a responsive website or that a website is not within your budget.  Or maybe you think because you don’t use a computer, neither do your potential customers.  These are misconceptions.  These 4 reasons show why your company NEEDS a professional website, no matter what size your business.

1. YOUR SMALL BUSINESS WILL GAIN CREDIBILITY

Today, more and more consumers use the internet to search for the products or services they need.  Your small business will gain credibility by having a website.  Without one, potential customers will go to your competitors.  If you already have a website but it is “home-made”, having it professionally redesigned will provide your business with a professional image which will inspire even greater confidence.  For home-based businesses, this is particularly beneficial since you do not have a store front to promote your products or services.

2. IT WILL ENABLE YOU TO KEEP YOUR CUSTOMERS INFORMED

Think of your website as being your online brochure or catalog.  It is much easier and quicker to update information about your products and services on your website than in print material, making it an effective way of letting your customers know about the arrival of new products, upcoming events, special promotions, or any new services you now offer.  Unlike print ads which quickly become outdated, your website can provide current information and news.

3. IT IS ALWAYS ACCESSIBLE

A website is available to both your regular and potential customers 24/7/365 providing them with the convenience of reviewing your products and services when your store or office is closed.  With today’s busy lifestyles, this is a great selling point when making a purchase decision.

4. A WEBSITE MAKES IT POSSIBLE TO TARGET A WIDER MARKET

Whether you provide products or services, your website will provide an alternative location to sell them.  As a retailer, a website (eCommerce) is a great place to sell your products to a wider market; even services can be made available globally.  Don’t think you’ll be able to sell your products or services online?  Don’t forget, even cars and houses sell online!

So call Windy City Webdesigns today to create the perfect website for your business!

Things On Your Website That Are Driving Your Customers Away

Often times, many websites have content, pictures, layout, color schemes and more that can negatively impact your website. The amount of people that are leaving your website, because it is aesthetically unpleasant, could be more than you think. In order to decrease the amount of visitors leaving your website, its important to know why they are leaving in the first place, and try to fix those problems.

Having a non-responsive website can cause visitors to wait for your website to load if they are on a mobile device. When a website doesn’t load or when a customer is waiting for a page to load because it is slow can result in a customer having a bad experience which means they will never want to come back. They will also most likely tell others of the bad experience they had which can cause damage to your company. To improve the speed of your website, make sure images are compressed and try to stay away from content management systems if at all possible because they take longer to load.

Providing quality content that is quick and to the point is what will keep customers coming to your website. Visitors come to your website and want to know what your business is about and what you can provide for them. The content that is on your website should reveal honest facts, whether it is about client testimonials or your customer satisfaction guarantee.

The layout of the overall website is the first thing customers see and it is their first impression of your company. You want to make sure it is a good one by making sure there is an equal amount of information and pictures in order to balance the website as a whole. Color schemes and font sizes and styles are equally important because the font size and style will express to your viewers the tone you are trying to get across to them. Using a more serious font would work well with content whereas a fun font would be ideal for a sales or promotion image on your website.

Windy City Web Designs has certified professionals that can help you increase the number of people who visit your website. We use special strategies in order for your website to succeed. For help to reach your goals and to maximize the number of new and returning customers to your website, contact a member from our web development team today.

What is responsive design and why do I need it?

For companies who are looking for a new website there are many questions to ask yourself as far as style, layout, colors, and number of pages you want or need. One question that you may forget to ask yourself or may not even know to ask is, “Do I need responsive design on my website?” The answer is yes. Responsive web design is a format that your website is created in using CCS and is highly recommended by many web designers and developers. Windy City Web Designs will be able to inform those companies with new websites what it is and why it is so important to create a website in this style.

It is a great idea to incorporate responsive web design when creating a new website because no matter what type of device you are using, it will be always be compatible. Responsive design has the ability to be read on a mobile phone, tablet, laptop or desktop and still looks good no matter what the screen size is or platform. With the alarming number of people who use their phones and tablets over a traditional laptop or desktop computer, it is important to have your website showing up on all devices. Not doing so, could result in a major loss of conversions, potential customers, and even returning customers.

If a customer is trying to access your website on their mobile device and does not have access to it, this can leave the user with an unpleasant and possibly negative experience. Customers don’t want to have to wait for anything to load or have half of the site appear when searching on a mobile device or desktop. This means the odds of them buying your product or service decreases and will most likely give their business to someone else, like your competitor.

Having a responsive website will also be a plus to have if you plan on doing any search engine optimization or internet marketing. It is said that google prefers responsive web design over the alternative because it is easier for google to scan your site and it reduces the chance of any on-page SEO errors. Responsive websites also perform better and are easier to maintain.

Windy City Web Designs creates responsive websites for all of our clients and is the method we recommend to most clients when they ask for our services. Check out our portfolio page to see what our responsive websites look like or contact us to learn more about our responsive website services.

Gain Customers with Responsive Web Design

Chances are, if you don’t have a responsive web design, then you are missing out on a lot of potential visitors and customers.  If this is the case, you are most likely losing some too.  Below you will see why a responsive web design will help you get more visitors, and how not implementing this design could be handicapping your business:

You cater to mobile platforms

As you probably know, people are always on their phones or other mobile devices.  Because of this, a lot of your current (and potential) visitors are probably accessing your site on the go.  A responsive web design automatically adapts and conforms to different screen sizes, perfect for mobile use.  If your web design is unresponsive, it could be shrinking the text too small for the visitor to see, distorting your images, or it may not properly fit into the screen at all.  This makes it hard to use and a turn off to all potential customers.

Improved visitor experience

Responsive design means no redirection, no duplicate content, no awkward site or page renditions that look different on every platform and that may not even translate properly half the time.  Responsive design translates into a site with a consistent look and feel that works on all devices, thus offering a better experience, which attracts more visitors and can lead to a higher conversion rate as well!

Optimized marketing

Every business wants to reach as many consumers as possible in their target market.  With responsive design, you seamlessly integrate your campaigns into all mediums, from desktop to cell phones, thereby reaching more consumers and attracting more visitors.

Increased visibility on search engines

Google and other search engines like responsive sites, and tend to feature them most prominently in the main SERPS (search engine result pages), as well as local searches.  That means not only increased overall visibility, but also increased community exposure for your website, equaling more local, national and even global visitors.

You stay relevant

Refusing to update your old website design is a great way to lose visitors and miss out on the opportunity to gain new ones.  Employing state of the art technology on your site that improves your visitor experience keeps you relevant and keeps your website looking great, and that’s a major step in helping you get more customers.

Your web design needs to be more than a polished, visual representation of your business and brand these days; it needs to work with whatever medium your potential visitors can find your site on, including their laptop, cell phone, tablets and other devices.  If you haven’t already implemented a responsive web design, then it’s time that you do so.  Contact Windy City Web Designs to get started on your responsive website!  It will help you get more visitors and help keep your business growing.