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By OppGenetix

Time to Switch to HTTPS: Google Chrome 86 to Disrupt Sites with Insecure Forms

On August 17, 2020, Google announced that Chrome 86 will start to crack down on websites that send forms via HTTP protocol and not HTTPS. This also includes websites that have mixed forms — forms on HTTPS sites that do not submit over HTTPS.

Chrome 86 will deter its users from submitting forms over non-HTTPS protocol by disabling its autofill feature and alerting users that these forms are not secure. When users ignore the first warning and submit a mixed form or form over HTTP, they will also see a full page warning that alerts them to the risks of submitting that form. 

For those using forms for lead generation, this update may result in fewer earnings and leads generated.

Chrome 86 is expected to be released October 6, 2020, but its beta release is currently scheduled to roll out during the first week of September. This means website developers have a little over a month to ensure all forms on their sites are migrated to HTTPS to protect users’ privacy and data.

By OppGenetix

Creating A Website That Meets Consumers’ Expectations 

The majority of consumers don’t understand how search engine results work, according to BrandVerity’s Online Consumer Search Trends 2020 study. 63% of consumers think that search engines categorize results by advertising spend or relevance, or they don’t know how the search engines work.

The study also found that nearly half of consumers felt misled by a site in the search results; a quarter of them reported feeling like they were “often” or “always” misled by a result. 25% also said that the page a search engine directs them to does not show them what they were looking for.

There may not be a whole lot to do in terms of educating consumers about how search engines work; however, there are some things businesses can do: meet consumers’ high expectations and improve user experience. 

Larger, more established businesses typically have more resources, so it’s easier for them to meet those expectations and create a better user experience. Growing businesses may lack some of those resources, but that doesn’t mean they can’t do the same thing for their website in similar ways. Even the smallest change has the potential to make a big impact on your consumers.

 

Optimize your business’s website for multiple devices

People use their phones nowadays for the majority of their consuming, including shopping and educational content. So, it only makes sense to have a website that runs smoothly on a smartphone, or any other mobile devices, for that matter.

When (re)designing a website, it’s critical to implement a mobile-first website with responsive design. Responsive design uses HTML and CSS to resize websites based on the device a site is being viewed on. It works for phones, tablets, and desktops of various resolutions.

Many web hosting and CMS platforms, such as WordPress, have features with built-in responsive design code. As an added bonus, a custom platform like Prismic offers CMS capabilities in a more efficient manner, giving businesses the ability to create mobile-first and fast websites, that will in turn boost SEO. It’s a win for everyone involved.

It’s 2020, and there shouldn’t be any more excuses for having a website that isn’t mobile-friendly.

 

Use a well-designed website layout

It’s tempting to go all out and use every single cool feature as seen on other businesses’ websites. But here’s the thing: a busy-looking website can be too much to follow, resulting in higher bounce rates and less information retained from your consumers.

Don’t be afraid to use white space. It gives content breathing room and can help users find where to focus, or even to look for a product or page. That said, choose a focal point or two and use color or images to draw consumers’ attention. Think about size, too. The bigger an element, the more attention-grabbing it is.

Visit a website and take note of the first item you notice, then the second, third, and so one. Ask yourself what exactly drew you in. Was it color? An image? Text? Was it the biggest element on the page? Or the brightest-colored?

 

Choose fonts, colors, and images wisely

Fonts, colors, and images can make powerful focal points that direct consumers’ attention from one part of the page to the next. 

 

Font

Paragraphs, please! Write paragraphs that are ideally no more than five sentences long. Longer content is good for SEO, but one giant blob of text is not good for readers’ eyes. You must balance form and function, with the rise of smartphones many readers are now trained to digest content in smaller blocks.

Be sure to make use of different heading sizes to divide up sections. It helps readers skim to find what they’re looking for. Headings are also useful for outlining content before writing it, making them a win-win! Typical site headings scale from H1 down to H5, with each heading being smaller than the previous to help set a visual hierarchy in the content. We recommend starting your H1 font size around 36px (pixels) to 50px. These headings will also factor into your search engine optimization strategy. 

Text size is important and so is the readability of the font. Cursive scripts may look elegant, but they can be difficult to read. Save those fun fonts for headings or titles, or maybe even the business’s logo. Don’t use them for the main body text. For most websites, start with a body font size of 14px or 16px depending on body font style. 

Use no more than two or three fonts on the same page and make sure it’s legible. Also, consider what’s being marketed on a website to help select the fonts that are most appropriate for the products. Advertising IT services or medical treatments with Comic Sans would interject more questions than provide credibility, but that font may be more acceptable for a preschool’s website. If you do not have an agency or creative person in-house, simply start with a neutral font such as Open Sans that can be industry agnostic. 

 

Colors

Assuming your small business already has certain colors selected for its branding or logo, try to implement those colors on your website — but don’t overdo it.

Consider keeping the overall background white, gray, or black. Neutral colors go with everything and are less likely to clash with other colors.

Highlighting focal points with colored sections on top of that neutral background can really make your website pop.

Make sure that your font is readable. Black font on a black background is not accessible to readers.

 

Images

Use professional-looking images — even stock photos. Yes, stock photos can appear too fake, but at least they look clean, crisp, and professional.

If possible, get a professional photo taken of you and your team. Seeing the “real faces” behind a small business makes it more personable and approachable. Even including small headshots, a very brief bio or quote (no more than a sentence or two), and contact information for each employee in the “about us” section helps.

 

Keep an organized navigation bar or menu

If your horizontal navigation bar at the top of the page contains more than five or six elements, it’s time to start consolidating, especially if it’s a dropdown menu.

Navigation bars typically include links to the following pages:

  • Home: Bring users back to where they started: your small business’s home page. You can simply use the word “home” or link your logo back to the home page.
  • What We Do/Solutions/Treatments/Products: Essentially, this page features what your small business does. Pretty simple, right?
  • Resources: What extra resources could your small business offer? Product sheets or white papers? Client testimonials? Case studies? Blog posts? These are all items you can include in a dropdown menu, and in some cases, one or two elements can be separate elements on the navigation bar.
  • About/Team: What’s your small business’s mission statement? What are your goals? Write a brief bio or quote with professional headshots for each employee. Include professionally taken photos of your business or products. You may want to include hiring information in this section, too, or at least as part of a dropdown menu.
  • Contact: Depending on what services or products you’re offering, this may be the most important page. It’s where users will take the next step and schedule an appointment or learn more about the service or product.

 

Create authoritative content

Show consumers that you know what you’re doing by creating in-depth content. Content comes in many forms: podcasts, videos, and blog posts. It’s easier than ever to start getting into any of these mediums.

Become the authority in your industry — or at least the expert in your neighborhood. Showing your knowledge doesn’t make you a know-it-all; it shows everyone else that you are a great resource who knows their business and industry.

Building up trust and meeting (and eventually, exceeding) consumers’ expectations takes time and effort, but that effort will pay off for you and your small business.

Website redesigns can be a lot to take on, especially while you’re trying to run and manage your business operations. This is why we specialize in helping growing businesses design and develop better website experiences built for their unique consumers.

By OppGenetix

Medical Practice Marketing Multi-Channel Investment

There are so many different ways to market your medical practice. Digital marketing has grown immensely over the past several years. Splitting budgets between traditional marketing tactics and digital marketing, ppc, and other online marketing efforts can seem daunting. So the question becomes “How does my business achieve the max ROI for our marketing efforts?” We’ve worked with a number of medical practices who have taken the multi-channel approach investment.  By diversifying your marketing budget across multiple channels, your practice will have the opportunity to increase its web presence, drive brand awareness in your local market, and generate a healthy pipeline of prospective patients. When using this marketing approach it’s important to keep your logo, name, and general branding consistent across all channels. If you know your audience, it will be much easier to select channels people are more comfortable with and more likely to interact with your brand. 

Paid Search: If users want to learn more about your medical practice, chances are they will Google you before doing anything else. Targeted advertising can help your team generate a higher quality lead volume. Results and tracking can be implemented to help you measure an ROI for these efforts. This type of digital marketing works for all budget types and can be paused and restarted at anytime. Our team has worked with a number of local medical practices and has helped drive qualified traffic to medical practice websites.

Paid Social:  Social advertising also has targeting features to make sure your ads are being shown to the correct audience. Social media advertising can help build relationships with prospective patients and encourage engagement from those who could be interested in your practice. There are a number of different solutions for advertising on social media. You can create successful campaigns that drive results on any type of budget that’s available. 

Search Engine Optimization: Content is king. Having lots of content revolving around your practice and services can be a huge factor in organic search results and improving search engine optimization (SEO). If your strained for time hiring a free-lance content writer can be a great addition to your blog or other web pages. The more information you can provide around your medical practice, the better informed your potential patients will be. 

Direct Mail: Although digital marketing has taken part of the direct mail market share its still an important aspect for any marketing campaign. One of the first things you should do is select an audience you are trying to target and make sure there is a clear call to action on the mailing piece. Adding a promo code for a free consultation or visit can help support your multi-channel efforts.  

TV/Radio: If you know your target audience consumes television and radio this could be a great way to reach them. By using a hashtag on a television ads or calling out a website in radio ad copy could help support the other multi channel functions of your marketing campaign.

Email: To round out the multi channel approach marketing strategy email marketing can help drive engagement. Grab the attention of readers with compelling call to action, images, videos, and  GIFS. You can send special offers and program details to help promote your business. Feature a section of your website for active users to subscribe to your newsletter or other email communications to continue communications with patients.

Multi-channel marketing is not a one size fits all approach for your business. Some channels might not fit your target audience. It’s figuring out which tactics will work for your medical practice marketing strategy for max ROI. This approach can grow your brand recognition, bring higher conversion rates, and untimely bring in more patients. 

By OppGenetix

5/30 – This Week In Digital Advertising

This Week In Digital Advertising

We’ve moved!

We are happy to announce our move to 1105 Schrock Road in Suite 200. As our team continues to grow we needed more space to better serve our clients. Everyone at OppGenetix is excited for what’s to come and we are so happy you are along for the ride with us.

Google’s Mobile First Indexing for New Web Pages Starts in July

Google has announced that mobile first indexing will now become the default for all new, previously unknown to Google Search, websites starting July 1, 2019. Ever since mobile indexing was announced, Google has been pushing developers to create websites with a mobile first mentality. Most websites have been modified and content has been updated for both desktop and mobile.

If your not sure what mobile first means it’s the way Google crawls and indexes your website and pages on the web. Google will look at the mobile version of your website first, instead of looking at the desktop version. Now over 50% of what Google indexes is indexed over mobile-first indexing.

It’s important to make sure your developer team and marketing teams are aligned on this change. If a new web page is launched and has a low mobile score, your search ranking and indexing from Google could be impacted.  

Microsoft Acquires Data Platform Drawbridge to Improved LinkedIn Ad Targeting

This week, LinkedIn announced the acquisition of Drawbridge, the advanced machine learning tool. This is all in an effort to continue to grow and improve paid advertising tools within the platform.

LinkedIn has said “We believe Drawbridge’s team and technology will allow us to accelerate the capabilities of our Marketing Solutions platform, helping our customers better reach and understand their professional audiences and measure the ROI of their campaigns across mobile and desktop.”

Drawbridge will work with LinkedIn to integrate the AI tools into the platform over the coming months. This will lead to a larger set of targeting and data options being made available to LinkedIn marketers.

LinkedIn shows several types of ads to users, including native “sponsored content” ads that appear on the platforms main feed, personalized “dynamic” ads and sponsored InMail messages.

This merger is exciting for marketers looking for more targeting options and tools. LinkedIn has unique data available for targeting. We will continue to target sets of users who you are specifically looking to convert to customers.

By OppGenetix

5/23 – This Week In Digital Advertising

This Week In Digital Advertising

Google Search Results Page Getting New Design

Over the next few days be on the lookout for changes to Google’s search results page on mobile. Google announced on Wednesday that the search results page will start to feature the favicon at the top of results cards on organic listings. Google says this will help users to identify results and scan pages.

If Google is showing you a relevant advertisement you will start to see a bolded ad label at the top of the card alongside the web address so you can quickly identify where the information is coming from.

This update shows that Google will continue to evolve how we look at the search results and even more. “As we continue to make new content formats and useful actions available—from buying movie tickets to playing podcasts—this new design allows us to add more action buttons and helpful previews to search results cards, all while giving you a better sense of the web page’s content with clear attribution back to the source.”

Our team internally will be watching traffic numbers for mobile as this roll out happens. As search continues to develop we want to make sure our clients information is quick and easy to identify. Adding the favicon to search results can bring your brand front and center in this digital space.

Hey Siri! Let’s talk voice search.

Using voice search and digital personal assistants is becoming second nature to many of us.

A new study released this week finds that 21% of people use voice search on a weekly basis. We all know how convenient it is to say “Hey Google, What restaurants are near me?”

With the power of Artificial Intelligence, these searches grow smarter with every interaction. The conversational phrases we ask these machines start to understand the context of messages and continue to build on the information we provide.

The study also found that among those who use voice search frequently, most are using it in their home (37%), in the car (34%), or while walking to a destination (11%).

Our team has had many internal conversations around voice search. Something we’ve considered is that voice search uses more conversational and longer words for searches. These type of searches are more likely to contain questions phrases. With voice search optimization taking off, it’s important to make sure you understand how your end user speaks about your brand. Ask yourself, what questions are people asking about my brand?

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Time to Switch to HTTPS: Google Chrome 86 to Disrupt Sites with Insecure Forms
Creating A Website That Meets Consumers’ Expectations 
Medical Practice Marketing Multi-Channel Investment
5/30 – This Week In Digital Advertising
5/23 – This Week In Digital Advertising