Friday, July 13, 2018

Voice Search: It’s Here To Stay. How Do You Capitalize?

Voice search whether through Siri, Alexa, Google Voice Search, Google Home and even Spotify is here to stay.

What is voice search? When people use a microphone based device to speak out their search rather than typing it into a search bar.

voice search seo

Here are three key articles on the emerging voice search trend.

From Nightwatch, an SEO ranking tool provider:

Then there are the stats coming in from Google itself, with one out of five queries now being a voice search.

The key takeaway from all of this is that your customers are using voice search because it’s easy. They can use it on the commute to work, at home, when they’re out with friends … and even when they’ve just got out of the shower and realize they want to order some food.

(Read the entire Nightwatch article.)

From Forbes regarding Voice Driven Searches:

Voice search is the real deal

Still skeptical about voice search? Consider this: Google reports that 55 percent of teens and 40 percent of adults use voice search daily; and, according to Google’s Behshad Behzadi, the ratio of voice search is growing faster than type search. Voice search calls for a whole new keyword research routine: Voice searchers use normal, conversational sentences instead of the odd-sounding query lingo. (Read the entire article here.)

And this additional Forbes article:

Smart Speakers

The voice search revolution has been catalyzed by the rise of smart speakers. Though similar technologies have been around for years, in 2017, sales of smart speakers more than tripled thanks to the rise of both Google Home and Amazon Echo. Smart speakers are almost exclusively reliant on voice commands to operate, conditioning people to resolve their questions and accomplish tasks using voice-based queries. (Read the entire article here.)

What does this mean in terms of voice search SEO?

You need content on your site, particularly articles and blog posts, that have a question as the title. People will ask questions in voice search much more often than if they type.

For example, let's say you were looking up a pool supply company.

If you typed the search, you'd probably type pool supply fort worth (or whatever city in which you lived.)

But if you voice searched it you might ask, "Where is a pool supply company in Fort Worth?"

You need a page or article on your website that reflects the phrasing of that question and answers it. The title of the page or article should be the actual question the voice searcher will likely ask.

Many of your articles will begin to be based on questions and answers. The good news is these are fairly easy to create.

As a second step, you can add schema code to the header of the page that tells the search engine this is a question and answer post or page.

We can help you with Voice Search SEO in three ways:

  1. Showing you what words and questions people are using in voice search.
  2. Helping you write a page or article that specifically addresses that question.
  3. Inserting the right schema code into the header of the page or article.

In this way, you can start to send some of that valuable voice search traffic to your website, convert them and land them as a customer, patient, or client.

Call us at 817-889-1487 for help with voice search SEO and Search Engine Optimization in general.

The following article Voice Search: It’s Here To Stay. How Do You Capitalize? is republished from: Moon and Owl

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Load Times: Before You Let Your Nephew Build You a Cheap Website

Your Website Load Time

We continue with the fifth installment of our series on questions to ask before you let your nephew build you a cheap website.

cheap website

Ask your potential website designer this...

How fast will my site’s load time be? What do you do specifically to ensure my site loads fast?

Why it Matters

Your visitors want to see their content fast! Many of your visitors will bail if your website’s load times are long.

In fact…

“A 1-second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.” (source: kissmetrics.com

That’s serious money. If something else was wasting 7% of your business' money needlessly, you’d repair it quickly!

Also, more and more search engines are measuring how fast your small business webpage loads in order to determine how high you rank in the search results. A slow site causes a lower ranking on Google, Bing and other engines. This means fewer people find you on the internet.

This results in less money in your pocket.

Your Nephew's Site Load Time

Your nephew (and some established designers) can build you a "pretty site."

What they probably won't do is go to through the painstaking task of testing and optimizing each element of your website. Thus, your site won’t be loading at its full potential and you’ll be losing out on customers. That's lost revenue.

FREE LOAD TIME REPORT

Is your current site slower than it could be?

FIND OUT! Fill in the information and we’ll send you a FREE report on your site’s speed bumps.

Your Lightning Fast Load Time Website with Moon & Owl

Your small business website will have screaming fast load times. Han Solo and Usain Bolt will be jealous of your site’s speed! Why?

Each element of your site will be isolated and checked for its required load time. Any element slowing it down will be individually optimized. Large images will be compressed and tweaked without affecting their beautiful appearance. Any code slowing down your website will be streamlined. Any caching settings—how your visitors store the webpage for repeat visits—will be set to decrease their load time. We are transparent about this process and will even share the results of your speed before and after we fix it.

You’ll know your small business website load time is fast--faster than your competitors. We spent the money to buy the analyzing software and take the extra website development time to perform this process on each of our client’s small business websites because we know, in the end, a happy client is our best client. When you succeed, so do we.

A cheap small business website with slow load time wastes your small businesses money no matter how cheaply your nephew develops it. Get great VALUE with a Moon & Owl small business website.

Call us @ 817-889-1487 to get started!

Our next Before You Let Your Nephew article will focus on customized landing pages to get increased conversions.

Load Times: Before You Let Your Nephew Build You a Cheap Website is available on: http://moonandowl.com

Thursday, June 21, 2018

How Much Does a Website Cost? How Much Does a Web Designer Charge?

The answer to this question is actually quite complex. Each website designer bids projects differently. This article will help you ask the right questions to get an apples-to-apples comparison on how much a website costs and how much the website designer will really be charging you.

How much does a website cost?

When ascertaining the cost of webite design make sure you are comparing the bids as apples-to-apples.

When you get a web designer's bid, you must first see what is, and what isn't included in the scope. You especially want to check this on the low price bids. There can be a lot of hidden costs not included in their bid. This article wll help you determine what questions to ask to determine what is and isn't being quoted in each web design proposal you receive.

Yes, you can probably find someone to grab a template, plop generic content in and launch it for a price of $500. Then it will sit there doing nothing beneficial for your business or organization.

Remember this web design mantra.

Cheap ≠ Affordable
If you get a cheap $500 website that gets you no leads, remember this is MORE expensive than a $4,000 site properly designed that gains you $6000 in leads.

how much does a website cost

Here are questions to consider to better understand the Web Designer’s charges for your website and the cost of of website.

Is keyword research included in website design cost?

Make sure keyword research is included in your website design costs:

Many web designers will completely skip the keyword research for your website. You’ll get the standard non-SEO optimized service pages, about us page and contact us page.

Unfortunately, you just built a website without any foundation.

Keyword research IS the strong foundation of your website. Nothing should be built without this being done and done correctly. You can’t build a site that truly targets potential clients, customers, and patients without it.

Once you know your keywords (and how much search volume and competition exists on each), only then can you truly create a sitemap (outline) of the pages of your site, knowing exactly what each page should be titled.

For example, should a page be called Dallas Breast Cancer Surgeon or Breast Cancer Surgeon Dallas? Each of these terms searches as entirely different keywords. One gets much more search volume with lower competition than the other.

Moon & Owl knows how to determine what each page should be called to generate the most traffic.

What platform will the site be built on?

You need to know whether the cost of your site design will cover a hard-coded, a limited-DIY platform, or a robust CMS.

If a web designer says he is going to hard code your site, run. Every time you want to change one little word or comma on the site, you will have to call him or her to make the change in the actual code.

You want your web designer to use a content management system (CMS). A CMS allows you to log in to change simple page texts, add pictures to galleries, and more.

If your designer is simply using a drag-and-drop content management system like Squarespace, Wix or Weebly, you are going to have some limitations as to what can be customized in your design.

These drag-and-drop platforms also limit your ability to do search engine optimization successfully. They are more designed for DIYers who don’t have the time or inclination to optimize a site for search and conversion. They look very pretty but lack the necessary features under the hood to make a site truly zing as an online conversion machine.

WordPress and Drupal are more robust content management systems that allow for full customization of design and have unlimited optimization horsepower under the hood. We tend to build in WordPress unless there is a reason another advanced CMS is needed for particular reasons.

A hard-coded site or site coded on a more DIY-oriented CMS will have more future costs than one built on a solid CMS platform. You are, in many senses, painting yourself into a corner when you chose to skimp in this area.

Does the price include testing different Call To Actions?

Testing is vital to the conversion rate of your website. Ongoing testing of CTAs should be included in the price.

Your call to action buttons and statements are the mechanism that moves potential customers towards enlisting your services or purchasing your products.

A lot of discount web-designers don’t have the call to action experience coupled with having tested 100’s of sites on how to best word and designer your call to actions. What should the copy be? What color should it be? How does it entice a click?

Once your site is built, it should be a “living organism” with constant testing and optimizing which starts with your call to actions.

If they simply add a “Learn More” button to every call to action, look elsewhere. (Note: Some of our buttons on this site are Learn More and others have a specific call to action statement. Each is tested. They are also super visible.)

Do they have A/B testing capability once the site is launched? If so, what does this ongoing testing cost and how is it priced–by month, by test or other means?

Is the price I am paying to make an online brochure?

There is a big difference between an online brochure and a website that converts visitors to customers, clients and patients.

Most cheap, low budget web designers approach your website as if it’s an online brochure. This is NOT the design principle you want working on your site.

A well designed (and typically more expensive site) has elements that build discovery, likeability, trust, and even foster referrals from current and previous clients. Each of these phases of the sales funnel can be tapped into with great site design. Intentional web design always moves people through the funnel.

A funnel moving site is more intentional in its design. Be prepared to pay more for it than an online brochure type site.

How many previous sites has the web designer built and does that affect cost?

If your web designer has completed less than 10 sites, beware, even if they offer you a steep discount.

If you’re a newbie site designers number 1-10 website to have built, be prepared for some big hiccups in exchange for a cheap cost.

There are simply some things that are learned best by doing. We have worked on hundreds of sites over the course of our careers. We’ve hit a few potholes along the way, repaired them, and know how to avoid them now. That’s good news for you.

Of course, the online and web environment is ever changing. New obstacles WILL present themselves to every designer. Knowing how to approach the problem will help generate the best future solution. We have the expertise and experience to approach even the most challenging technical problems.

We’ve built a custom e-commerce platform interface for a client who used an obscure, niche specific accounting program. We’ve rescued a site that was built by an inexperienced developer entirely in javascript to where Google couldn’t crawl a single page of the 3000+ page site…YIKES!

You will pay more an experienced designer, but it’s worth it! You’ll avoid a ton of headaches and problems with your project.

How does a web designer price his or her web design services?

Be wary if they say they charge by the hour.

Many web designers charge by the hour, with a recent report revealing on the low-end designer hourly rates hover around $40, while the high end is about though many designers charge $100 or more an hour.

But, should you be paying by the hour?
Paying by the hour for web design punishes you if the web designer isn’t efficient. If he or she is highly efficient, it punishes them. Either way and an ideal relationship soon can easily go sour.

You don’t buy an office or a home by the hours it takes to build, so why would you purchase a website, your virtual storefront, by the hour.

A website’s price should be built on its value to your business as it correlates to its value to your customers.

If a website makes enlisting your services or buying your products easier and faster for your customer it has more value to you than a site that doesn’t. Base price on the site's value to your business or organization.

Are you buying or leasing the website from the web designer?

Sometimes a cheap website is cheap because it really isn't yours. Make sure to read the contract before signing it.

Sometimes a cheap website is cheap because it really isn’t yours. You are simply leasing it from a design agency while you remain under some form of a maintenance agreement. If you quit that agreement, the site you depend on to deliver revenue goes away. Just like leasing a car, it’s cheaper but you have no site equity. A leased site is not really yours, and you are beholden to the designer for any changes or updates, even if they struggle to deliver on-time.

How many rounds of revisions are included in the web design costs?

Make sure you know how website revisions are made during the design portion of the website to avoid escalating costs.

"Sometimes a cheap designer will charge you by the hour for each and every revision. Others will not even consider the cost of additional revisions and make it up as they go. The worst-case scenario is you get a surprisingly large invoice you weren’t expecting.

You should know exactly how many rounds of revision are included in each phase. And because you provide us approvals at each phase, there are no bad surprises.

Can other costs enter into the website design price?

Be aware of what is and isn't covered in the formal scope of work.

Note what you pay for in the scope of work. Determine if custom photography, stock pictures, graphic design of infographics, writing the site, blog functionality, and other elements are addressed in the scope of work. If not get pricing clarity on these items.

Cheap or inexperienced designers often don’t realize what it will take to accomplish what your site needs to do. Then they find themselves stuck needing to use an API or plug-in or custom development that costs a great deal of money.

Because of our experience, we know the tools, API’s and plug-ins needed to accomplish your goals. All of the costs and potential costs are clearly stated in your initial scope of work.

How are the website design payments structured?

Ensure you have a clear understanding when each payment is due and the amount of each payment.

Many designers require a deposit of some type. This is actually a wise practice. It ensures you have skin in the game. This means your mind’s attention will be given to those elements on which the designer needs your input.

We have clients pay an initial deposit. Another payment is due when the sitemap, copywriting/content, and mockup is complete. Your final payment occurs when the site goes live. We’ve found this is the best way to keep the ball rolling with our clients. It also clearly demarks each phase of the design process for clarity in the site’s state of development.

Other Questions to Ask Regarding Web Pricing

• Is rollover to hosting included and what is the cost of hosting?
• What type of training is included?
• How sufficient will I be to make changes and in what areas after training is complete?
• How much does it cost if I need you, the designer, to make an update?
• What updates exist that I won’t be able to make as a site owner due to their complexity?
• Do you have a retainer minimum per month for ongoing maintenance? How is maintenance priced?
• What are the warranty terms and limits on the site once it is launched?

Moon & Owl Website Costs

We don’t have a standard price package because no site is one size fits all.

We’ll sit down with you in a free consultation, hear your story and help you determine what your site needs to accomplish. Then we’ll put together a tailored website package for you. No pre-fab templates or packages allowed! You’ll know how much you’ll pay and when along with a clear timeline for site development.

As a Starting Price Point

As a general point of reference, a Moon & Owl site that is a typical sized and about 10 pages, non-e-commerce starts at around $4,650. E-commerce sites start at approximately $5,600 and scale upwards depending on complexity and the number of products for sale at launch.

Of course, if you need a single page funnel or splash page, we’ll price it accordingly.

Highly Complex Site Design and Development Capability

A lot of discount web designer don’t have the team or expertise to build complex application based sites. There is a great deal going on under the hood on an application website.

We’ve created very complex, database oriented sites with deep applications and developments that cost $30,000+ but delivered capabilities the client was excited to have available for their brand.

We’re Here to Serve Your Unique Needs With A Fair Range of Web Design Rates

Whether you need a small, single-product one-page site or a large, complex data-querying site, we can serve your specific needs. You’ll have a site that is affordable, truly one-of-a-kind and provides true value to your business, practice, or organization.

How Much Does a Website Cost? How Much Does a Web Designer Charge? was originally published to: http://moonandowl.com

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Downtown Fort Worth Experiencing Lots of Changes

Downtown Fort Worth . . . we love it. And it’s growing!

downtown fort worth

New Downtown Fort Worth Apartments

A new study reports housing units downtown will increase 36 percent, allowing up to 8,000 people to be residents of the area.

The study, by Downtown Fort Worth, Inc., found 1,516 new apartments and condos were under construction or completed last year – a 36 percent increase.

The apartment occupancy rate was 96 percent – even with the larger number of units.

Interestingly, only 15 percent of people who live downtown also work downtown, the report said.

New residential and office buildings are going in. Downtown saw $466 million in new construction permits from 2015 to 2017. (Source)

Commercial Development

This new development is being matched by commercial development to serve those new residents to make life more convenient. For years, downtown residents didn’t even have a pharmacy walking distance. Soon, a new pharmacy is opening in downtown.

A two-story, "urban-style" CVS Pharmacy is on the verge of opening at Fifth and Houston streets, just outside the city's Sundance Square. A handwritten sign on the window of the store tells customers the CVS will be "opening June 24, 2018."

It will provide the center of downtown with its first full-service pharmacy within walking distance of Sundance Square since Eckerd Drug closed at 611 Houston St. (now the Library Bar) in 2001.

About 46,215 people work downtown, according to Downtown Fort Worth Inc. Another 7,612 people live downtown — many in the growing number of high-rise multifamily buildings. Also, downtown has 2,522 hotel rooms. (source)

Some critique has come in that most of the new apartments are upscale, offering little remedy for lower-middle-class people seeking residences.

But almost all of the apartments are being built for people who can afford quartz countertops, rooftop bars, concierge service for Amazon deliveries and remote-controlled stoves.

Almost nothing is being built for working class folks or recent college graduates moving to the area for an entry-level job.

Since 2010, 16,460 apartment units have been built in the Fort Worth area, according to RealPage, a real estate data company. But only 4 percent of these new units — a lowly 710 apartments — are now priced below the area's average rent price of $1,093 per month. (source)

Some Controversy in Downtown Fort Worth

But downtown and the surrounding area isn’t without its controversies. A recent lawsuit was filed against the city by a construction firm who says it’s employees were subjected to arsenic and benzene in a project.

The Fort Worth City Council is expected to vote Tuesday to spend $85,000 on outside lawyers to defend a lawsuit alleging the city has mishandled the cleanup of toxic chemicals along the Trinity River near the Panther Island project downtown.

A city attorney acknowledges ground water on the property is contaminated with hazardous materials and said the city has a plan to clean it up.

Michael Evangelista-Ysasaga, CEO of a construction company hired to do excavating work on the property, put the city on notice he plans to file a lawsuit.

Evangelista-Ysasaga said his company, PennaGroup, was never told before it started the 2010 project that the dirt contained hazardous chemicals, and his workers immediately complained of headaches and dizziness. (source)

Better Public Transit is Coming

Also, a new TEXrail station is planned for downtown Fort Worth to connect downtown Fort Worth to DFW airport and other areas.

A new 27-mile TEXRail line will run from downtown Fort Worth to DFW Airport. But developers are already making big bets on the blocks around the stations and some are taking a unique approach.

A two-acre site at the NW corner of South Main and Vickery will be home to the first transit-oriented development in Fort Worth. Plans include a ten-story apartment building with retail space on the ground floor and a hotel next door.

And the downtown Fort Worth station will address another of the city's biggest needs: affordable housing. Half the units to be built there will rent to people who make 60% of the area's median income through a partnership with Fort Worth Housing Solutions. (source.)

Rapid Home Sales

And homes appear to be flying off the shelf, too. One zip code just south of the Fort Worth downtown area is the fastest area in the nation to flip and sell a house.

The 76119 zip code, which is located southeast of downtown Fort Worth and also covers portions of Arlington and Forest Hill, is tied with a zip code in Memphis, Tennessee, for the fastest average time to flip a home – buy it, renovate it and sell it – at 93 days. (source)

We are proud to serve clients around the nation. We also very much love our marketing agency's hometown of Fort Worth.

 

The following article Downtown Fort Worth Experiencing Lots of Changes was originally published to: www.moonandowl.com

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Fort Worth Social Media Marketing Trends

Here are some current trends in Fort Worth social media marketing (commonly called, SMM). If you own a small business in the Fort Worth area, this article provides you straightforward social media strategies and tactics you must be using to up your game. We’ve even included your first action step in easy to read orange […]

See Full Article Here: Fort Worth Social Media Marketing Trends

Friday, June 3, 2016

Facebook Ad Targeting (One Simple Trick to Keep You From Wasting Money)

You Should Be Using Facebook Ad Targeting to Grow Your Business. Facebook is a VALUABLE social media marketing platform for small business marketing and promotion. For a fraction of the cost of print or SEO and often Google Adwords, you get access to people who are prone to engage your services or purchase your product. […]

See More Here: Facebook Ad Targeting (One Simple Trick to Keep You From Wasting Money)