How do you define your target audience?

How do you approach your website design and digital marketing?

While some will simply create a website and hope for the best, there’s a better way. By first defining your target audience – a more specific, targeted group of people that you want to reach – you can increase the chances of a good return on marketing investment.

What is a target audience?

To define your target audience, you need to look at a variety of demographic factors to establish the type of people that are most likely to be interested in your product or service. These factors could include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Marital status/whether they have children
  • Income
  • Profession
  • Education level
  • Location

Once you have established the types of people that are most likely to buy from you, you can start to work on marketing campaigns and methods, and the best style of communications that speaks to your audience. You have to make the target market aware that this product or service exactly what they need or want.

How to define your target audience

Defining your target audience is all about research. There are several different ways to work out who your target audience is, and the methods you choose will vary from company to company. These could include:

  1. Analyse your existing customers. Do you know who they are and whether there are any commonalities? If you don’t currently have demographic information about your existing customer base, consider adding questions to newsletter sign up forms, or use analysis tools to look at your social media following to find out who they are.

  2. Conduct a review of your competitors. Do you know who your biggest business competitors are? The likelihood is that their customer base will be the same target audience as yours. Analyse any information you have about their customers to help you to define your target audience.

  3. Look at customer needs/pain points. Which needs or pain points does your product aim to address? If you’re providing virtual PA services, for example, you’ll be aiming to target the owners of small businesses that don’t have this function in-house.

You may well find that you have multiple target audiences – perhaps, different audiences for different products, or different potential audiences for the same product, depending on how it is used. That’s why it’s so vital that you do your research, ensuring that your audience is clearly defined to give you the best chance of success.

For all web design services that help you get results from your target audience, contact Real Internet today.

 

 

How to Choose a Good Web Design Company

Picking the right web design company isn’t only about looking at their previous work to see if they can create a beautiful website. There’s far more to consider than just aesthetics, and a good web designer knows this. But how do you find one that suits you?

Here are three questions to consider ensuring you get a great looking site, as well as the support and forethought needed to make it valuable, too.

Do they offer the whole package?

Website design is just one piece of the puzzle. There are also things like hosting, security, and maintenance to consider. This work needs people with expertise too, so if you don’t have someone on staff who can take it on, you’ll be stuck if something goes wrong.

If you hire a company that can work with you every step of the way, you’ll be in a much better position. For example, what happens if your site goes down?

If your company is on hand to help, they’ll have all the access they need, and prior knowledge of the site, to identify the problem and fix it quickly.

This dramatically reduces downtime, especially compared to hiring a new person. That would mean getting them up to speed, digging up your domain and hosting details, and getting them access so they can make a fix. By this point, a lot of damage will have already been done.

Are you on the same page?

This is a less technical issue, but just as essential. You need to know you can work with the web design company you aim to hire, and that, while they are the experts, they’ll take your considerations and knowledge of your industry onboard too.

This means having in-depth and structured conversations with the web design team before anything gets started. Be sure to know what you want, what your customers want, and your red lines you don’t want to cross. It will be clear very quickly if the company wants to work with you, rather than drag you along with what they want.

If you’re getting the sense your prospective company falls into the latter camp, it’ll be time to look elsewhere.

Do they know their SEO?

A beautiful website that converts well is only valuable if people actually visit it. For many companies, this means ranking for relevant search terms in Google. The process and actions to achieve this is called ‘search engine optimisation’, or SEO.

How a website is built plays a huge role in this. For example, if it’s slow and doesn’t work on mobile screens, Google is never going to rank it highly no matter how good the content you put on there is.

It is integral your website design company not only consider SEO but have expertise in it. Be sure to ask them about this, and to hear their exact approach for building your site to standards search engines favour.

A good area to ask about (but by no means the only one) is Google’s Core Web Vitals. Going live in May 2021, they will be a major influence on how Google ranks websites. If your company has never heard them, this should sound alarm bells.

Here at Real Internet, we take the time to talk to you about, not only what you want, but what you need as well. Contact us to discuss how we can work with you to create a website that brings in visitors and converts them to paying customers.

Who Hosts this Website? How do I find out?

At Real Internet, we are passionate about creating vibrant websites that show your business at its best. We can also help you with your existing website, and one issue we often encounter is a client asking, “who hosts this website?” closely followed by “how do I find out?”. There are a few ways to discover this, so we’ve put together this blog post to help you.

Follow the money

Often the simplest way is to find out where your bills for website hosting are headed – your accounts department should be able to tell you. You may find that your website hosting is part of your internet company, so your website host may be your telephone company or internet service provider.

Online tools

You can use online tools to help you find out who’s hosting your website. These will give you lots of information about the IP address, netblock owner and server technology, as well as information about domain name registration and server technology.

Running one of these checks also gives you details of administration teams and tech guys, so you can get in touch to confirm if this is where your website is hosted.

What happens when you find out who the host is?

When you know who to contact, give them a call and tell them who you are and what you need. You will probably have to prove that you are who you say you are and that you are part of the company that the website belongs to. If you are not asked about this, it shows an alarming lack of security.

Need more help?

If you need more help finding the answer to the question “who hosts this website?”, just get in touch with our team. At Real Internet, we’re experts in website hosting, website design and build, and provide monthly maintenance packages so your website is always performing at its best. We can help you every step of the way, so you can look forward to having a website that really works for your business.

 

What is Digital Marketing?

The modern business world is a fast-moving place where companies have to be able to move with it. This is especially true in marketing, where new ways of reaching consumers are always emerging. One very popular method now is digital marketing. Most people have heard of this – but not everyone understands what it actually involves. It really is worth getting to grips with though, as it is a very important part of building your business in the modern age.

What is digital marketing?

In simple terms, digital marketing is any marketing that a company conducts online. This is the main way it differs from offline or print marketing, such as mailing letters, handing out flyers or putting up posters. Digital marketing happens only over the internet and uses online connectivity to work. Online tools like Google Analytics are also available to help track your digital campaigns and get the best return from them.

What are the most common forms of digital marketing?

When asking ‘what is digital marketing?’, it is worth pinning down what particular types of digital marketing there are and the online channels companies mostly use, although this is constantly evolving.

The most common forms of digital marketing you may come into contact with are web page content, blog posts and social media posts. Businesses use platforms like Facebook or Twitter, as well as their own company blog, to engage with consumers, and usually to signpost them back to their website in a carefully constructed way to help convert them into customers or subscribers. Email marketing is also very popular and allows organisations to easily communicate with consumers to generate leads via signposting them back to a targeted web page.

Paid advertising via channels like Google Ads is also commonly used by many companies now. This is where you pay for custom adverts to be shown when people search for selected terms. As a result, it can really help drive more traffic to your site and subsequently, more sales. Understanding SEO (search engine optimisation) is the key to online marketing. This refers to optimising your website with targeted keywords as well as easily navigable and readable layouts and content so that it shows up higher in search engine results.

Why use digital marketing?

This is the big question for all businesses. Digital marketing is a way of connecting with people that comes with a range of benefits which include:

  • low or no cost (social media accounts are free to use for example; the only cost is in time/staff to carry it out)
  • superb ROI (due to there being zero or low costs to run digital campaigns)
  • digital channels are easy to use and keep track of
  • allows you to engage consumers in a way they value and prefer

As you can see, this form of marketing comes with some great reasons to recommend it!

Contact Real Internet for more digital marketing help

Here at Real Internet, we have helped many businesses around the Bristol and Gloucestershire area get up to speed with digital marketing. While things like SEO website design and social media marketing are easy to grasp, you may need some extra assistance to use them effectively. Get in touch today on 01454 806570 for more details.

What is SEO in Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing refers to the process of using the internet and other digital media channels to promote a product, service or business. Search Engine Optimisation – more commonly known as SEO – is one of the most popular forms of digital marketing.

SEO is the process of increasing high-quality targeted traffic (visitors) to a website from search engines such as Google and Bing. SEO works by increasing a website’s visibility on search engine results pages (SERPS) when someone searches for a word or phrase (keyword) that relates to the product or service offered by the website.

There are many reasons why SEO is such a popular method of digital marketing. Firstly, the traffic is completely free, unlike PPC or media buying where each visitor has to be acquired. Secondly, the traffic is highly targeted because the visitors you acquire through SEO are specifically searching for the product or service that you offer. This makes SEO an inbound marketing method.

How do you successfully optimise a website?

Fundamentally, SEO can be broken down into on-site and off-site optimisation. The first part of on-site optimisation is ensuring the keyword(s) you want to rank for are placed strategically on the pages you wish to rank. This tells Google that you are serving the content that the prospect is searching for. The second part of on-site optimisation is ensuring your webpage is well coded, device responsive and fast. Your web designer or web design company should help you with that.

Off-site optimisation generally refers to showcasing that you are a trustworthy website, this can be done by obtaining backlinks from trusted sources and ensuring business listings and data such as name, address and postcode (NAPs) are accurate everywhere.

If you have a brick-and-mortar business or a business with a physical location/office, ensuring you have accurate profiles setup on business listing sites, such as Google My Business and Bing Places, is essential to ensure you rank for local search terms that provide map results. An example of a local search term could be ‘website design Gloucester’ or ‘website design near me’.

There is no better method of driving targeted traffic to your website than SEO, so we suggest you speak to us to ensure your site is fully optimised and ready to rank at the top of Google.

What is SEO Website Design?

SEO website design uses a website’s coding, link structure, appearance and development features to rank the site higher in search engine results pages. It gives you a website that’s beautiful, easy to find and enjoyable to use, making visitors more likely to convert.

SEO website design and SEO: what’s the difference?

SEO website design is just one component of an effective SEO strategy. SEO website design, as a one-time service, tends to be cheaper than continual search engine optimisation campaigns, but it’s also the perfect precursor to ongoing SEO projects, helping to further boost your online presence over time.

SEO, on the other hand, is the larger overall process of optimising a website and its online presence. For example, by improving its content, keywords, links, pages, load times and functionality, and by managing how the website interacts with search engines in the long-term. Effective, continual SEO work relies heavily on good SEO website design at the outset.

SEO website design optimises your website’s code, usability and link architecture, with fast and significant results. It also gives your ongoing SEO work, such as link building and content marketing, the greatest possible impact (and value for money).

What does SEO website design involve?

As a web design agency, one of the many web services we provide for our clients is SEO website design. To lay the foundations of great SEO web design for your website, we focus on two essentials first. These are search engine optimised code and search engine optimised link structure.

Search engine optimised code involves removing, or simplifying, any code that doesn’t absolutely have to be on your webpages. This cuts to the chase when the search engines crawl your website, making it clear that your site is all killer and no filler. Done professionally, with absolute attention to detail, this process can have dramatic results for a site’s SEO.

Precision SEO coding makes it clear to search engines that your first priority is providing valuable, highly useful content accessibly to your visitors – which is also faster, tidier and tastier for search engine spiders to crawl. This could really help your webpages to rank more highly in search.

Search engine optimised link structure involves a careful audit and re-work of your website’s page architecture. This helps to manage how search engines view your website, reorganising the links between items (such as page categories and subcategories) into the most search-friendly link hierarchies.

This process makes your site’s many webpages (like products and product options) as valuable, relevant, self-contained and search-appropriate as possible for search spiders to crawl easily, and effectively. Kind of like organising separate-but-related pages into combined SEO blocks.

More valuable, self-contained and appropriate link structures harness the built-in power of your website’s highest-quality pages, making the absolute most of your PageRank to boost your place in search engine results. It’s all down to the expert optimisation of your website’s fundamental link structure.

There’s so much more to great SEO website design!

The points above really just scratch the surface of world-class SEO website design, but we hope they help understand its complexities and the incredible results it could achieve for your website in the search results.

If you’d like to learn more about our SEO website design service, and what our wider end-to-end web services like website hosting, web development and digital marketing could do to dramatically boost your online presence, just get in touch – we’d love to help!

How to Design a Website

The thought of designing your own website may seem daunting. You may wonder where to start and how to get to the end result but don’t worry, we have put together a guide to help make your website a success!

First things first…

Before designing a website, you need to define what the purpose for it will be. For example, will it be an e-commerce site, a blog, a portfolio…? This is very important as it is the first step to creating your perfect site. You will also need to decide on your company branding, what colours you will use to represent the website, what layout you have in mind, and whether content will be text-heavy or more on the visual side.

It is also important to come up with a domain name; this must be unique to your website and represent what it is you are wanting to promote. Make it simple and easy to remember, to allow more driven traffic.

Different ways of designing and building your website

There are various ways to create a website that meets your desires. You can make it yourself from scratch – this is the most difficult way to build a website as it involves a lot of work and is time-consuming. However, it is very rewarding when you see the finished results!

Or, you could use a website design and developer company/agency. It doesn’t matter if you are building a brand new website or looking at updating one that already exists, they will help with your decision. You can usually find a variety of different packages on the websites catered to various levels of requirement, from standard brochure-style, service-based websites to more in-depth e-commerce sites. You get professional help and advice when choosing to design your website with an agency and the process is a lot more straight forward than designing a website yourself as you make all the decisions with none of the work. This saves you time which will be beneficial in the long run.

Other helpful tips

Some other things will need to be done to ensure your website runs smoothly and gets the recognition it deserves. Make sure the website is mobile-friendly is a must. 52% of website traffic is generated from mobile phones, so it is vital that your audience can access your website from their mobile devices.

Also, once it’s up and running, don’t forget to promote your website. This can be via social media, word of mouth or business cards etc. Make sure people know about your website and services and, last but not least, ensure you are using the correct tags and keywords in all the right places to drive traffic to your site.

Want to find out more about designing a website? We are an expert web design agency based in Gloucestershire. Get in touch today to talk through your ideas.

website-report

Monthly Website Reports

Today, we are talking about the Monthly Website Reports we issue to all our clients. We send these out at the beginning of the month for the previous month. So, at the beginning of November, we sent out October’s Report. 

We will go through the Report page by page.

Overview

The Overview page shows a breakdown of everything that’s in the Report. Thus, the number of updates completed, the uptime of the website, the analytics, the security issues, the performance, and any keywords we are tracking for SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Updates

The next page is a summary of the updates that we have completed over the previous month. It will show the plugins that have been updated, the theme updates etc.

For example, on the Real Internet Website Report for last month, the updraft plugin was updated, and the theme we use was updated. What is updated will vary on how many plugins are on your website, and the theme used to create it. There can be several updates each month, it just depends on what the developers send out to us.

The purpose of the updates is to make sure that our sites are running on the most secure versions, which protects our servers and customers’ websites/details from hacking attempts and to make sure that the sites are running smoothly and responsively.

As the sites are hosted on shared servers, a hacking attempt on a site that hasn’t been updated can put the other sites at risk. 

Optimization

The Optimization page shows what has been cleaned from the database. For example, spam comments, revisions, etc. The database is where all the information about your website is stored. It needs to be kept as optimized as possible to ensure that your website is looking good and performing well at all times.

Uptime

After that comes the Uptime statistics. As stated, this shows how long your website has been up on the internet live and functioning. Sometimes there can be a few glitches where it could go off for a couple of seconds and then come straight back up. These are just one of those things that happen in the wonderful world of technology. If we notice that a site has been down for more than five minutes, then we will investigate and sort it out.

One of the things that can cause a website to be down is if the security certificate is not up to date. These must be attached to your website, Google likes them and they show your site is secure to visitors. Therefore, we make sure they are up to date and active. All our websites should have a security certificate attached but, if you don’t have one, please let us know and we will install one.

Analytics

The next page is the Analytics page. It starts with an overview of the amount of traffic to your website broken down into sessions, pageviews and session duration. Analytics are measured using IP addresses, which is the unique address attached to a particular computer. When somebody, attached to an IP address, goes onto your website and how long they stay is a session.

You can see how many pages per session a visitor has looked at, and you can see how quickly they might leave your website if they don’t like it, for whatever reason. It also shows where the visitor has come from. For example, organic searches are when somebody has gone on to Google and put it in a specific search term. In our case, it would be website designers in Gloucestershire.

Following that is a breakdown of the figures where visitors came from, how long they stayed on each page, what they searched for to find your website and the countries they are based in. You will be surprised at the amount of traffic that comes from overseas! 

Security

Next, we come on to the Security page. For the Real Internet Website Report last month, we completed a total of six security checks. This shows any malware or any vulnerabilities that could be on the site, anything that would cause us concern e.g. whether hackers are trying to access the site.

Performance

The Performance page shows the number of performance checks we have completed on the website. We measure the PageSpeed and the YSlow grade that, together, indicate how well a website is performing.

The PageSpeed grade is the overall analysis of the performance of a page on both mobile and desktop devices. Several factors can affect the page speed, one of these is the number of images you have on your website. An image-heavy website will be slower to load than one that doesn’t have many images. But we can optimise the images to make sure that they load as quickly as possible.

As you can imagine, the better the score, the more you can assume your site is in good shape, and a good score is a fair in indicator of the wellbeing of your site in the eyes of Google.

The YSlow grade is defined by crawling your website and comparing it against a preset list of rules. A website is then scored against these rules and given an overall score based on the average. Each of the rules has a different weighting. Some rules have a bigger influence on your overall score than others.

Just like most scores, a higher score is better. But you don’t need to stress too much about having a perfect YSlow score. However, you do still want to improve your score as much as possible within reason, as improving your score would generally mean an increase in performance. If you would like to talk through your scores with us, then please do give us a ring we’re more than happy to help and make some suggestions on how we can improve the speed of your site and the overall important performance. 

SEO

The next page we come to is the SEO keywords we track. Now, you may not have as many keywords on your website, in which case, I suggest you have to think about this and what people may be searching for when they’re looking for whatever it is that you sell. We can then update your website to include those keywords. And again, this will improve your visibility on Google.

As well as monitoring keywords, we can also show the top four competitors you have for the same keywords. This is useful to help you keep track of your competition, and again, help you become more visible on Google. Which is what we all want after all!

So, that’s a very quick run-through of our Monthly Website Reports. We hope you find the information useful. By comparing your Reports month by month, you will see where things are going up or going down. You can have a think about what did I do this month that made my website go up or equally, what did I do that made my website go down? If you need help with any of this or you just have some questions, please give us a call or email us at support@realinternet.co.uk. We are more than happy to talk to you about this, the Reports or your website in general. We are here to help.

Why Digital Marketing is Essential for Business

If the Covid-19 pandemic has taught businesses one thing, it’s that to survive in the long term, they must fully embrace the digital world. Having a standalone bricks and mortar outlet is no longer enough – a website and online store are essential, as is being able to reach new consumers and increase your audience. If you don’t have a website or need to update an existing one, get in touch here.

If when you hear the word ‘marketing’, your thoughts veer towards posters, print advertisements and leaflets, you are liable to be massively missing out. For all businesses – but especially small ones – it has never been more vital to embrace more effective ways of marketing their services, products or solutions.

The online marketplace is vast, and if you embrace digital marketing in a manner that is effective and efficient, you could reap significant rewards.

Why Digital Marketing is so Vital

The digital environment offers your business the opportunity to reach just about anyone in the world, so the main benefit is that your potential audience immediately expands from people that happen to be in your hometown or city to everyone on the globe.

Some other major benefits include:

– Being able to target specific demographics. If you understand precisely who you want to reach – age, gender, location, wage etc. – then you will be able to ensure that your marketing materials reach the right people at the right time. This requires data and information, so the sooner you begin marketing online, the more accurate your data will be.

– You can interact directly with your audience. Social media and websites allow for immediate communications between business and potential customer. By being able to respond to queries quickly, you are marketing your company as one that genuinely cares for its customers.

– You can quickly assess how effective email campaigns have been. By checking clickthrough rate, email opens, enquiry numbers and the amount of time your target audience spends on your pages, you will be able to decide whether your campaigns are working. If you believe they can do better, you can modify text/images/exclusive offers to make the content more appealing. Many digital marketing platforms will also allow you to do A/B testing, enabling you to send out two different marketing campaigns at one time, which will end up giving you a clear idea of what type of content tends to work best.

If you are ignoring digital marketing, you are, quite simply, doing your business a significant disservice. The entire world is online, and if you want to make your business successful both in the short- and long-term, you cannot afford to ignore the online audience.

For more help with digital marketing, contact Real Internet here.

How Digital Marketing Affects Consumer Behaviour

Digital marketing has changed the way consumers now purchase goods and services. Businesses can no longer keep churning out generic marketing messages and hope for the best. Consumers are more sophisticated and tuned-in nowadays, so companies need to build relationships with their prospects through digital marketing channels.

Here are some examples of how digital marketing has changed consumer behaviour:

Analytics

Before the emergence of digital marketing, it was virtually impossible to understand customer trends and preferences fully. Now it’s possible to build consumer profiles based on analytical data gathered from website tracking and email marketing. This insight provides marketers with valuable information to enable them to create marketing campaigns built around consumer preferences and segmented audiences.

Content aimed at an audience that has already displayed and interest will improve open rates and so lead to increased purchases.

Social Media

Social media has transformed a brand’s ability to reach out to prospective purchasers. It provides all businesses with a channel in which to develop relationships and strengthen their brand. Consumers can now make an informed decision based on opinions from family, friends, and other users. They browse the internet, read reviews and testimonials, and then make a decision about a product or service.

Loyalty

Consumers seek value for money and won’t accept overpriced services or products, and neither will they accept poor customer service. They are less likely to remain loyal to a brand as they were before the onset of digital marketing. They will also happily switch brands if they think they are getting a better deal elsewhere.

Tolerance

Consumers today have limited patience, and they expect an immediate reply to queries. That’s the beauty of digital marketing channels – they can be fast and furious. It takes one tweet to build or destroy a brand’s reputation when consumers share their experiences online.

At Real Internet, we have bags of creative experience in the digital marketing world. We design thoughtful, responsive and practical websites in WordPress, which we host on secure, dedicated servers. We pride ourselves on our ability to take all of our clients based in Gloucestershire and Bristol on a successful journey into the digital marketing world.