Landing Pages

5 Top Tips To Optimise Your Landing Pages

Optimising your landing pages can ensure users stay on your site for longer, interact with your content and most importantly convert into customers! Well thought out landing page content is not only essential for e-commerce websites or companies running PPC campaigns, but every business with an online presence.

Follow our top five tips to ensure your landing pages provide the best possible experience for your customers:

1. Start with the fundamentals


A great online experience starts with a great website, so before you look to optimise your landing pages make sure your site provides the best possible foundation. With mobile now contributing to 45% of all e-commerce traffic in the UK*, it is essential to ensure your pages are scalable to be read on mobile devices, as a failure to address this is likely to impair your rankings on Google, not to mention being detrimental to user experience.

Speak to your developer or SEO consultant about ensuring your site speed is not slow, by minimising the size of image files and scripts in the back-end, as studies have shown that slower page load times result in an increase in site abandonment*. Make sure consumers can see all of your great content quickly when they come through to your site.

Consider the accessibility of your content – is your text big enough? Do you sell internationally, if so, is it easy for consumers to navigate between different languages/currencies? If you sell products online, make sure consumers can easily access information about Deliveries and Rreturns, as  your website often serves as your first opportunity to provide great customer service.

2. Do your research


A good place to start is by looking at how users are navigating through your site. Which pages are the most popular? Which pages are people leaving without having made any interaction? Heat mapping software like Hotjar enables you to see how users interact with your pages, from the percentage of users scrolling down the page, to the areas of the page they typically hover over, to the most popular links. Tools like these will enable you to identify areas of improvement, and where the hot spots are to put the most important information or calls to action.

The next logical step is to look at your competitors. Which companies are currently ranking for your target keywords? Do they rank for their homepage or a specific landing page? Look at how the page is structured, and how easy it is to navigate through the site. Don’t just look at your direct competitors, be aspirational – look at the brand leaders in your industry and sites of other brands you know sell well, as you can pick up some inspiration from them too.

3. Make the most of your campaigns

Don’t just consider your landing pages in isolation, as they form a key part of any campaign. Make sure your sales messages are communicated across all marketing channels – from PPC ads, to emails and even offline media like print ads. Consistency is key; you want customers to be able to instantly locate and recognise your offer, to generate the best return. ASOS have done this particularly well with their seasonal offers.

They promote their campaign through PPC ads:

Campaigns PPC

Which is consistently communicated via email marketing campaigns:

Campaigns Email

Which follows the same design as their landing pages:

Campaigns Landing Page

Be sure to track your campaigns using custom landing pages or tracking URLs, so you can see how they perform and improve on this over time. Ensure you capture customer data wherever possible to broaden the reach of future campaigns, for example offering customers a discount in return for them signing up to your newsletter.

4. Keep it simple

Keep it simple

Make sure your content is easy to digest, by breaking up text with eye-catching images, illustrations or graphics (see more information about how important imagery is on a website here). Consider the fact that users in the UK read left to right, and ensure the most popular content is ‘above the fold’ (the segment of the page you can see without having to scroll down). Be clear on what makes your business unique and display this at the top of the page.

Calls to action are vitally important – make sure it’s immediately clear what you want users to do – be it to view a particular page, make a purchase, submit an online enquiry or call you. Ensure these stand out in their positioning and the colours and language you use. Consider how you can add a sense of urgency, such as an online countdown to the end of a sale. Make enquiry forms as short as possible; you have a short space of time to capture the customer’s interest, so don’t give them any reason to drop off the site.

5. Build trust


Finally, consider how you can prove your unique proposition – do you have any awards/accreditations/customer testimonials you can use to inspire trust in customers? Make sure these are displayed clearly, and ensure you build a culture in your business where you are asking customers for feedback – to both improve your site and campaigns, and provide positive reviews to encourage new customers to buy into your business.




Website Images: Are They Really That Important?

Humans are visual creatures, with 40% of people claiming they respond better to visual information than plain text*. For this reason, the design of your website and effective use of imagery is extremely important in engaging your customers and prompting them to make an enquiry or purchase.

With the rise of image central social networks like Instagram and Pinterest, we have learned to process information extremely quickly through visual cues, forming impressions within seconds. In order to make your message understood, it is therefore essential to accompany this with related imagery to ensure an almost instant understanding of what is being communicated.

We have identified some tips to ensure your images enhance – not hinder – your website:

Choose eye catching images

‘46% of consumers say a website’s design is the number one criteria for establishing the credibility of a company’ – Hubspot

It is essential to ensure the images used on your site reflect your company values, look professional and effectively frame your content.

Imagery should relate to your offering, but doesn’t have to be literal. For example, if you sell fire safety equipment, a static image of a fire extinguisher might not be as engaging as an image of a fire being extinguished. Consider how to best catch the eye of the consumer as soon as they land on your site.

Fire Image

Consistency is key – just as you should replicate your company’s tone of voice across all communication through the website and social media, the style of imagery you use should also be consistent to affirm your brand identity and build trust in your customers.

The Jaguar website is a great example of this – they only use high quality lifestyle shots of the cars on their homepage, enhanced in post-production to look as if they are moving, to infer the speed of the vehicles. They haven’t confused the message by including product shots of the cars on white backgrounds, or any imagery containing people – it’s all about the cars and it’s consistent.

Jaguar Photography

While you may not have the budget or resource to produce images of this high a quality, it is important to consider how all of the images on your site complement one another and represent your brand.

Use images to sell

‘67% of consumers said the quality of a product image is ‘very important’ in selecting and purchasing a product’ – Jeff Bullas

If you are selling products on your site, it is essential that you provide as much imagery as possible to give consumers the best possible sense of how the product looks. Mix lifestyle shots in with product shots where appropriate, i.e. if you’re selling a piece of furniture, show the product on it’s own but also include it in a decorated room to give an impression of how it can enhance this space, or if you are selling clothing show this on a model styled with other items to show how it fits a real person rather than just shots on mannequins. Victoria Plum offer a range of product images including shots of the furniture in use:

Victoria Plum Product Image
Victoria Plum Product Image

With the absence of the ability to touch and feel the product, give customers the opportunity to see the product from every angle where possible – 360 photography can enable you to let consumers rotate the product to see every angle.

People buy for emotional reasons, so consider how you can appeal to users’ emotions when selling your products – especially if they are high value purchases. For example, holiday companies often include smiling couples or families in their photographs, appealing to consumers’ emotional attachments to the loved ones they will be taking the holiday with.

Be selective with stock photography

Stock photography can be extremely hit or miss – it can be utilised by companies who do not have the budget or resource to take photos in-house, but it can often be misused when cliché or inconsistent imagery is used.

If you need to use stock images, take some time to browse the resources available – there are a wealth of websites offering free and paid images, of varying quality. Sites such as Stocksnap contain free images supplied by photographers, which are much more creative than some of the other platforms providing generic images. Shutterstock is a great resource for paid imagery, with packages available to save you money when buying in bulk.

Consider using iconography or illustrations instead of photography if you are struggling to find good images. Moz have produced an illustrated mascot, and use attractive iconography across the site which consistently communicates their brand values:

Moz Iconography

Add team and company photos

Including images of the team can give your brand a face and personality online. Browsing online is in the most part an impersonal experience, so help your customers to connect with you by showing images of the people who own and work at the company. People buy from people, so this is an effective way to convey your company’s culture. At Creare we feature colourful images of our staff to communicate our brand personality:

Creare Team

Images of the office can also help to attract customers and potential new employees, by giving a sense of the environment you work in. This enhances the legitimacy of the business, and can be much more engaging on your ‘Contact Us’ or ‘About Us’ page than a generic stock image of a call centre worker.

Studies have shown that on average, over half of users spend less than 15 seconds on a website*. This gives you an extremely short window through which to communicate your message; follow these tips to ensure your imagery helps you to convert visitors into customers.


Image sources:


How to Encourage Comments on Your WordPress Blog

Writing, managing and maintaining a well-read blog could be one of your biggest and best business assets. But how do you get that engagement? How do you create a conversation with your audience and woo them into giving you their thoughts, opinions and experiences?

We’ve put together 5 simple steps that you can easily put into action in order to get those comments flowing on your posts. Take a look and see what you think. I’d love to hear your views…


The Journey of Building a Website

What happens after a website order form has been signed and money has exchanged hands is a mystery to many people who have bought from various digital agencies in the past, but it really shouldn’t be.

We thought it would be useful to tell you how it works at our end so you know what to expect if you decide to take the plunge. Welcome to our guide to journeying with Creare through a web project. Enjoy!


  1. So first things first, your dedicated Project Manager will call to introduce themselves. They will confirm with you the details of your website and talk you through how it’s all going to work.
  1. From the information collected by your Business Development Manager we shall then get to work designing your homepage.
  1. The homepage will take us anywhere between seven to ten days to complete and once it’s ready, we’ll call you to take you through it. The initial homepage that we design for you is normally un-coded so you will see it as a PDF.

It’s worth noting this is a really important part of the process to get right, as it will then form the structure of your site moving forward.

  1. Once you’ve been presented the homepage, we would need sign-off and/or feedback from you within 48-72 hours, at this point we will also need all the items mentioned in step one. Then the exciting bit – once all of this information is collected we can then schedule the development of your whole website!
  1. When you’re in the diary, our Project Manager will call you to confirm the schedule and arrange a presentation date for the final site. We love to invite our clients to the Creare office for the presentation, it gives us a chance to meet you and it gives you a chance to see where your project has been built.
  1. From the day we present the site, you’ll then have approximately five days in which to check everything and ensure all the information is captured correctly and the call to actions are clear.
  1. Happy? Once you’ve sent us your email/signed approval of the site, we start the process of putting it through our rigorous Creare standards check. This checking process makes sure your site works effectively and efficiently. Our standards are high, the best in the market in fact, so you can rest assured that your site will be top of the range.
  1. Once the checking process has been completed, the site will then be set live to allow time for Google to ‘cache’ the new website.

When Google caches a website, it basically saves a copy of it allowing visitors to access this copy if there was ever an issue with your server. Clever stuff!

  1. After your site has gone live, you will receive a call around 30 days later to see how you and the site are getting on and for us to offer any additional help, advice and support. This is the perfect opportunity to pick our brains about ongoing online marketing. Now that you have a brand new, shiny and effective website, you want people to find it so together with our in-house SEO team, we will be able to work with you to provide a tailored solution that will help your business grow through its online presence.

Maybe you want to see how your current website is performing or you want to get a better idea of words and phrases your prospects may be searching for online, why not try the Creare Digital Health Check? It’s a free tool that takes your URL and checks your whole site for everything from its technical ability to its strength of content and social links. Have a go.

5 Ways Content Could Be Killing Your Website

5 Ways Content Could Be Killing Your Website

“Marketers allocate 28% of their total marketing budget, on average, to content marketing – the same percentage as last year. The most effective allocate 42, and the most sophisticated/mature allocate 46%” says the Content Marketing Institute. If we didn’t before, now we know that a strong content strategy is key to success. So, let’s look at the five ways in which your current content could be killing your website and your brand. Continue reading


Useful Planning Tips When Purchasing a New Website

If you are considering upgrading your website or commissioning an agency to design and develop a new site for you, stop! There’s some preparation work you can do first that will help your project run smoothly enabling you and your developers to ensure a timely launch date.

Before deciding to have a website designed, you need to decide on and set aside your ongoing marketing budget to promote your website. Why? Two reasons…

  1. Your website needs to be structured with the right pages in order to accommodate your online marketing. For businesses targeting a local area, this may mean a number of pages need to be created that showcase specific services or, for a business selling online, specific product and brand pages that attract the right sort of clientele may be crucial. It really does depend on your business goals.
  2. Secondly, there’s no point having a great looking website that never gets found. By setting aside a monthly budget for marketing, you are giving your site the best possible chance of generating maximum return on investment.

In advance of your meeting with your chosen agency, have a think about the following questions. They’ll save you some time and make the meeting more productive…

Your USP

What is it that makes you different, what are you promoting, why should I pick up the phone and call your company, why do people buy from you?

Website Structure

What you are trying to achieve, who’s your audience, how many pages do you need, do you want to be able to manage the content yourself or do you want your developer to look after that for you?


A fact that often gets missed relates to content. What content do you have available, can it easily be uplifted to put onto the pages of your website, do you want any animation or video to create interest, do you have written content is it ready or will you require content to be written and do you have a need for updated photography?

Shopping Online

If your site allows customers to buy online, how many products do you have, how are you uploading them and what shipping methods and rates do you want to offer?


How would you like your customers to contact you? What vital information needs to be captured on the initial enquiry?

Once you have got to grips with the information for these questions, remember that you need to get some information back from the agency too…

  • What you are getting for your money?
  • What’s the timeline in which you need to collate the above information to ensure a smooth process?
  • When will you need to be available to sign off designs?

By being fully prepared for this new business venture, you will not only make sure your site is delivered in a timely fashion, you will also be making sure that the site is fit for purpose and meets your businesses needs.

Work with your Agency/Developer and you assigned project manager. Together you both want the best looking and the best performing website. Don’t be intimidated if you’re not technical savvy, that’s why you have appointed a professional. Ask as many questions as you need to in order to feel comfortable and confident with the process and most importantly enjoy it! This is a really exciting moment for your business and its future.

Happy creating!


Creare Launches Digital Health Check Tool

Creare launches digital health check tool, helping SMEs to understand their digital presence and take action.

Today, Creare, one of the UK’s leading digital marketing agencies for small and medium businesses launched a brand new online tool for small and medium business at their Digital Demystified event in London; Creare’s Digital Health Check.

Creare believes that in order to flourish, our industry must remove the mystique of digital marketing and provide small and medium businesses with solutions that are simple to embrace and delivered with complete transparency.

For the first time, a tool of this kind has been designed specifically for the business owner or manager to use and take action on. Non techie, no jargon, simple yet comprehensive results detailing the performance of a business’ existing digital presence, with tips and advice on where to focus and how to improve, such as testing whether a business’ website is mobile friendly.

Creare’s Digital Health Check tool also features an innovative search marketing planning tool, helping the user discover the opportunity to embrace digital marketing. By simply inputting an industry type, location and market reach, the user is presented with the volume of searches, seasonal trends and an assessment of how competitive their market is. Creare’s Digital Health Check puts the power into the hands of the business owner.

Creare provides the Digital Health Check free for all to use, whether you are a Creare client, or any business looking to improve your online presence. The user will receive a free report detailing any recommendations on how to improve, plus information on how Creare can support them in achieving their ambitions online through our range of digital marketing solutions.

Tom Darnell, Creare’s Chief Commercial Officer said: “At Creare we have identified a clear need; demystifying the unnecessary complexity of digital marketing for the thousands of small and medium size businesses looking to build a fantastic online presence. Today we are excited to launch Creare’s new Digital Health Check and believe it is a game changer for SMEs, for the first time a tool of this kind has been specifically designed for the business owner, no jargon, clear recommendations, and what’s more, Creare’s Digital Health Check is available for any business to use for free, whether or not you are a Creare client.”

A media briefing pack on the Digital Health Check can be downloaded at complete with further information, images and quotes.



Notes to Editor

About Creare

Creare provide a holistic digital marketing solution for small and medium sized businesses in the UK, including websites, ecommerce stores, search engine optimisation and pay per click search marketing, social media and video. Established in 2007, Creare has provided websites, ecommerce solutions, search marketing, social media and video solutions to over 4,000 businesses.


For further information, please contact:

Tom Darnell, Chief Commercial Officer, Creare

Tel:                           +44 7595 075724

Email:                     [email protected]

shopping-650046_640 copy

Tips for Improving Your Online Shop

Maintaining an online presence and an online shop is no longer a quirk of business or a tech-trend; it is a necessity for survival.

Between 2011 and 2013, UK shoppers spent an extra £23bn online, and forecasts predict that the share of online retail sales will rise from 2012’s figure of 12.7 per cent to 21.5 per cent or even higher by 2018.

The figures underline the reality that the way we shop is, if not going through a revolution, certainly experiencing a large-scale overhaul as digital business takes hold. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past fifteen years, you’ll know that retail success no longer depends on physical stores.

Below are a few guidelines to take into consideration to maximise the impact of your online store.

  1. Images for substance and sparkle

More than a visual of your product, images offset text to bring balance and a more professional look to your page. Graphics allow you to present product stats in a more engaging and animated way than prose permits. Analysing sales each time you upload product images can give you a good idea of which pictures work best for your webpage.

  1. Develop customer trust

Your online shop showcases your company’s image; so present your best side. Include customer testimonials to establish yourself as a reliable firm. Use genuine correspondence that outlines how your service has helped the buyer; a comment stating how your product has promoted or helped a client will go further than a message describing your product as “amazing”.

  1. Qualify yourself

Let readers know that you are the best company for them by outlining your credentials clearly. Highlight key skills and background information in bullet point form, or integrated into a stylish paragraph that introduces your company as a solution-holder for clients.

  1. Flag up special offers

Most people know the online domain holds the cheapest deals, so special promotions should be clearly displayed. Make customers know they’re getting a good deal, so incentivise with lower rates made available when a certain amount is spent. Keep the shopping cart near the top of your page, as users tend not to scroll down the page too far – make sure the checkout remains clear and easy to identify. Rewards points and loyalty schemes are great ways of giving customers a tangible reason to bring repeat business and spread the word about the benefits of spending money at your store.

  1. Customer segmentation, targeted promotions & merchandising

From gender and age to interests and spending habits, the behaviours that make your customers unique should be factored into your marketing. Consider what data you want to collect, how it will be gathered and develop methods of data analysis for segmentation. You should also establish effective communication among relevant departments in your business to use this segmentation to best effect. The process should enable you to target smaller preference-specific consumer groups with relevant information and merchandising so that individuals find what they are looking for quicker and more easily.

  1. Be open and honest

Without a human to speak to, measures need to be taken by your online store to make processes clear, thereby promoting customer confidence. Ensure charges are not hidden but remain highlighted throughout a transaction. The checkout path must be completely linear – without sub-steps going to a previously shown page – so that customers are not confused or left thinking that there has been an error on the site. Give priority to delivery/returns policy and procedure to make sure people know where they stand at all stages of the purchase.

  1. Log customer behaviour

Harness the Internet’s forensic potential for tracking. CRM applications is an example of customer service software that will let you see how much time has passed since a customer last visited your online shop, and what they bought. You will be able to use this knowledge to suggest other items or services, giving your customers a streamlined experience and a personalised feel.

  1. Build a subscription base

Forge and reward customer loyalty by establishing a subscription list through which you can launch your company’s latest news and float special offers. Simply cataloguing client emails will allow you to send notes of thanks in the follow up to purchases to enquire about customer satisfaction. Many companies now use text messages to convey this extra token of customer service that will make the buyer feel more involved, cared for and ultimately more likely to return for business in the future.

People are busier than ever and today’s customers know that if a service doesn’t meet their expectations they have multiple platforms for broadcasting it to the world before they go elsewhere for what they need. This concept is magnified online where your clients can disappear with a click of the mouse. Ensure that maximising the customer experience is top of your agenda to build a solid client base and stay ahead of the online competition.




Where Can I Find Images For My Website?

In recent years images have become a vital content tool when it comes to creating a website.

However, finding images that you can use on your website can be a daunting task. The first stumbling block for many website owners is the uncertainty over whether or not an image can be used. This is a totally understandable reservation to have, as nobody wants to be on the bad end of a copyright claim.

So before we start, lets take a quick look at the most common licenses that you will come across when it comes to sourcing images:

Public Domain 

These are images in which the intellectual property rights attributed to the image have expired, or the owner of the image has released them into the public domain free of charge. Put simply, these images can be used any way you see fit.

Creative Commons

These images could be attributed to several available Creative Commons licenses. Some licenses require a credit to be given, whereas some allow the image to be used as long as it is unchanged. You need to ensure that you read the license attributed to an image before you use it, and follow the correct procedures where appropriate.

Royalty Free

Now, the name of this one can sometimes be deceiving. Just because it says ‘Royalty Free’, doesn’t mean that the image can be used for free. Simply put, it means that once you have purchased the image you can use it as many times as you want.

Rights Managed

With this license, the image can be used a limited amount of times. If you want to use the image more than the amount defined within the license, you will have to pay for the privilege.


There are numerous other licenses available online and ultimately it is down to the individual to ensure that they follow the correct procedure. However, if you are ever unsure, hold off using the image and email the owner or service to clarify – it is better to be safe than sorry.

It is also worth pointing out the importance of ensuring that you have the right account for the service that you are using. Some image services offer accounts for organisations whereas others don’t, so make sure that you have signed up for the type of account that is in keeping with your project and the work that you are going to be undertaking.

So, now that we have briefly covered the legal side of things, lets take a look at our top picks for sourcing images.



Shutterstock lets subscribers download a certain number of photos per day during the length of a subscription, for which you sign up for and will have to pay a fee. For example, as a one-month subscriber you can download 25 images per day.


iStock is another paid service that offers millions of royalty-free images. There are two different types of subscription services, the ‘essentials subscription’ and the ‘signature subscription’, that can be paid for either monthly or yearly. iStock also offers a pay per download service that offers credits for downloads.


Flickr is a site that continues to grow in popularity everyday. It is relatively simple to use; simply search using the creative commons license for free images and ensure that you provide attribution and a link back to the source.


Unsplash is a simple site to look at. However, they have a really great collection of fantastic high-res images that are updated every 10 days and can be downloaded for free.


Pixabay offers users use of a rapidly growing database of public domain images. These images can be included on your website without any attribution to the source.


Pexels is another great source for free images. The website is updated daily with 10 new, high quality images and the license for each image is also conveniently located to the right.

Bonus source – Your own images

An option for image sourcing that is often overlooked is to create them in-house. Whether you have a photographer on the team or you create the images personally; they are free and you own the rights, so it is well worth giving it a try.

And there you have it. Happy sourcing!


Your buddy building your website could be your first step towards business disaster

Don’t mix business and pleasure.

I am always intrigued by the answer to this question “Who built your website?” and the all too common answer “Oh, this guy I know built it for me…”

The follow up question – “how’s your website working for you?” (cue sharp intake of breath from small business owner and a look of embarrassment at their current online offering). Why is this? Why not fix it? The answer is simple; it’s always difficult to properly critique the efforts of a friend, relative, or the friendly web developer down the road you met down the pub.

You probably choose them because they were doing you a favour, saving you some money, getting your website knocked up quickly and now you’re stuck with an online shop front that doesn’t look very good and worse still, doesn’t work hard for you in driving traffic that could convert into valuable new customers.

The proliferation of what I call ‘web-co’; thousands of independent, one man band web designers who in the mid to late 2000’s created a huge graveyard of poorly built, horrifically designed websites which fester like relics in time. What’s more, the huge variations in service level, price and quality has left thousands of small business owners skeptical over whether they should ever trust a web designer again.

Does this sound like you?

Unfortunately in this increasingly digital world, your online presence is not something you should leave to chance. You need to work closely with a reputable web design company which has the expertise to help you build and manage your online brand, ensuring potential customers can quickly identify with your business and reach out to contact with an intention of making a purchase.

Here are my top tips to make sure you aren’t left with a new relic for the online graveyard:

  1. Check out some of their recent work, do you like the style of website they build?
  2. Does the web developers own website look any good?
  3. How do they rate on Google reviews?
  4. Do they use open source platforms for development such as WordPress? Important if you do ever want to move to another web development agency.

Don’t fall foul of the ‘guy down the road’ trap. Obey the good old rule to never mix business and pleasure.

Creares Advice Centre is full of helpful tips, tricks and advice to help your business succeed online. Take a read here.


Brands Bashed By Google #Mobilegeddon

April 21st 2015 saw the dawn of ‘Mobilegeddon,’ Google’s new search algorithm that penalises websites failing to offer mobile users an easy and enjoyable browsing experience.

The change saw many businesses drop search rankings due to sites that don’t make the most of responsive designs or take into account the high percentage of internet users on mobile devices. Here are some of the big brands that have already been affected…

The AA

While it does have an optimised mobile website and has earned the mobile friendly tag from Google, the AA lost some visibility due to the non-optimisation of pages for a number of  key terms, especially those relating to insurance. Without mobile optimised landing pages for many of its insurance products, the user experience is harmed.


Next experienced a 38% drop in mobile SEO visibility after Mobilegeddon, likely the result of poor technical implementation of their mobile site. The retailer’s online home fails to  respond correctly to a number of mobile devices (including Android and iOS phones).


While Barclays have a mobile website on their root domain, the bank directs users to a series of non-mobile landing pages for several high volume terms. This poor usability practice  is repeated throughout the Barclays site, leading to a number of ranking drops for high volume terms.

British Airways

British Airways has lost some visibility due to a series of poorly optimised pages, including those related to particular travel destinations. The site therefore appears below two of its rival operators, Virgin Atlantic and Emirates, when searching for certain holidays.

Sky Vegas

Sky Vegas lost a quarter of its mobile visibility in the week after Mobilegeddon took place, much of which appears to be attributable to slots related terms. For the term ‘slots’, Sky  Vegas fell from position two to position 11, whilst for ‘online slots’, it fell from position two to position seven.

Google were being serious with this change. Even the big guys haven’t escaped. Is your website mobile friendly? Use our Mobile Friendly Checker to see.


How to Create a New Post in WordPress

It’s no wonder so many companies decide to use WordPress for their websites. Creating an eye-catching blog post using its CMS is a piece of cake once you know how to do it. For those unfamiliar, here’s our five-step guide.

Step 1: Enter the dashboard

The dashboard is the central hub from which you can edit your WordPress website and add new content to it. In most cases you can access it by adding ‘/wp-admin’ to the end of your sites URL and logging in with your username and password.

Once you’re here, take a look down the sidebar on the left of the page and locate ‘posts.’ Hover over it and select ‘Add New.’

TOP TIP: For a web page that includes timeless information such as contact details or staff bios, create a page rather than a post. While posts are listed by date in the style of a blog or rolling news website, pages are static and can be reached via a permanent link in your sites navigation bar. For example, many company sites include an ‘about’ page with a designated section on the site, separate from blog posts containing relevant news items.

Step 2: Write your post

You will be taken to the text editor page, which is where you can enter the text and media you would like your new post to feature. Your post title should be entered into the narrow text box at the top of the page, and the main body of the post entered into the larger box below.

Two tabs on the top right of the text editor, ‘Visual’ and ‘Text’, select whether you would like to edit your post in a ‘preview’ mode (Visual) or as HTML (Text). While the latter option provides more versatility, Visual mode is easier to navigate and therefore more suited to beginners.

Step 3: Add images

Posts with images are much more engaging than ones comprised of block paragraphs. Add your images by first selecting the ‘Add Media’ button on the top left of the text editor, then uploading any images you wish to include and selecting them from the media library.

Take the time to carefully label each image you upload with titles, captions, alt text (the text your viewers will see when they hover over your image) and descriptions: this will improve your sites SEO (search engine optimisation), and once you have a large bank of images uploaded, it will also make them easier to find using the search function in the media library.

When you have decided which image you want to use, move the cursor on the text editor to a space you’d like the image to fill, select the image you want to use from your media library and the size you want it to appear, before hitting the blue button labelled ‘Insert into post’.

Step 4: Categorise and tag your post

Categorising and tagging your posts properly will improve your website, allowing users to find relevant content easily and improving your SEO.

To differentiate between categories and tags, it helps to think of your website like a book. While categories are like chapters that divide your site into its most fundamental concepts and themes, tags are the common words and phrases that might be found on an index page. For example, if a website about British wildlife included a category called ‘mammals’, its tags might be more specific terms such as ‘field mouse,’ ‘hedgehog’ and ‘badger’.

In order to assign categories to your blog post, you must first create them on the dashboard tab labelled ‘Categories’ (right under the ‘Add New’ link you clicked to reach the text editor). When you’ve done this, simply select the relevant categories on the right of the text editor page. Tags are easier – just type in the ones you want to include in the tags field. Between five and ten will do the trick.

Step 5: Preview and publish

When you’ve written your post, added images and chosen relevant tags and categories, check that you’re happy with how your post looks on your website by selecting ‘Preview’ on the top right of the text editor page. If you’re not, you can go back to the text editor and make the necessary changes; otherwise, all that’s left to do is hit the big blue ‘Publish’ button.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully created your first post using WordPress.


Guide: 10 Tips for Successful WordPress Posts

Do you really understand how to make a successful WordPress post? Read this guide for our top tips.

Used by millions, WordPress is expanding every day. Its user-friendly nature has allowed many new businesses to fast track their presence on the web and countless bloggers to establish a unique voice within their industry.

While WordPress offers a professional platform, you still have to put in a great deal of work to engineer content that is going to be consistently read in a way that builds the audience you crave. Below are ten techniques you need to be employing to maximise the reach of your blog posts:

Opening lines

Your post’s headline is the main pitch that sells the rest of your blog post. Make an attention-grabbing header and try to sustain its impact through the first lines of your blog post. A good way to start the post’s body is by posing a question – it makes you sound open and friendly and gives readers a direct opportunity to respond.

For example: ‘Can you build a successful blog with just one piece of writing a month?’, or ‘How do you get more people to read and share your content?’

A powerful statement will equally entice readers to continue investigating what you have to say. Alternatively a short anecdote is great for setting the scene – this should be a small story presenting a situation to which the reader will relate, or posing a problem to which your blog post will eventually find a solution.

Give something to your readers

Do not use your blog posts just to boost your SEO or as a way to funnel promotions down your readers’ necks. A blog’s primary role should give something to its audience – content that readers should find useful and engaging. Learn about what things your readers like by engaging with them in the comments sections, or by emailing contacts individually. Writing tutorial blogs or beginner-friendly advice are good ways to win the trust of, and to expand, your readership.

Make it yours

Avoid republishing someone else’s content on your blog. Rather, if you want readers to be aware of content that is not yours, provide a link to the content’s location. If you haven’t devised your content yourself, you should be offering more points of interest or a twist on the original concept.

Use widgets wisely

In WordPress a ‘widget’ is a small icon that sits in your sidebar. Whether it links to a Facebook ‘like’, a Twitter follow button, a short biography or information snippet, these little pathways have the power to add functionality and dynamism to your blog. Beware, however, if your blog has too many different feeds, updates and links to recent tweets, viewer fatigue will set in pretty quickly. Reduce your sidebars to the essentials by going into Appearance and Widgets and removing all the redundant items that threaten to undermine the calm and collected appearance of your cause.

Be on trend

What are people talking about now in your industry? Whether it’s the latest Jeremy Clarkson controversy, how the England cricket team is tumbling out of the world cup, or your office’s interpretation of the Harlem Shake, harnessing the cultural zeitgeist in your blog posts shows your finger is on the pulse. Be careful not to link every new blog to what’s going on, at the risk of being gimmicky, but this technique done properly will offer your readers familiarity and an easy way in to your content.

Organise permalinks

You’ve put your heart and soul into content for your site, so you want the major search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo to be picking up your creation. There’s a lot you can do to make this happen – signs you can put out to help point out what’s important to the search engine giants.

The built-in WordPress permalink field at the top of the editing page allows you to revise your links before you publish them. Take out unnecessary words and design your description with keywords in mind, ensuring that the final text is attractive to read.

For example:


You need compact permalinks that provide a concise outline of your post for search engines to understand, and this will help you rank a keyword that you’d like your page to be associated with.

Paint a thousand words

Images will enhance the look and feel of your page, but they should also be complementary to the content you have put up as well. They also work towards search engine optimisation. Keywords that you attach to your image’s caption and alternate text fields create text that appears when someone hovers the cursor over the image. Make sure the alternate text accurately describes the image you want to show, as this is what your readers will see if the image fails to load.

Moving pictures

A video provides a third dimension to the content you’re putting out. It’s a great way to strengthen links with existing audiences, as well as an effective means of giving new viewers a quick presentation of your blog’s personality. To embed a link to your YouTube video in WordPress, just start a new line in your post editor and paste in your link. The video will automatically appear in your post.

Have a landing page

A landing page acts as the face of your site and is your chance to present what you are about without the distractions of menus, sidebars and related iconography. Many premium themes will have a template-landing page complete with plenty of white space to build a frontage for your domain. A landing page lets you direct visitors to the most important part of your site, in a way that makes the reader feel they have chosen to go where they are being led.

The bottom line

A footer on your WordPress site will enable you to give a copyright message or publicise a link to an important associated page. This can be expanded to a full content section through many premium themes, where you can host a short bio or links to popular posts or pages. When people scroll down your page, they’ll be expecting to see who is behind your site, so be ready with a potted explanation of who you are and what you do so that readers are engaged with this space.

A great example is the one that can be found on WordPress itself:

WP Image

Even if you have devoted yourself to formulating ideas and opinions that will revolutionise modern society, they will fall flat unless equal attention is paid to how your information is presented.

Effective blogging calls on skills that need to be developed over time, so try not to be too overwhelmed by all the myriad possibilities when it comes to communicating your message in a way that works for you and your audience. You will have a more productive – and enjoyable – experience if you take your learning pathway slowly, recognise that Rome wasn’t built in a day, and invest time in experimenting with different methods and media until you start to see the desired results.