What Metrics to Capture

Metrics

Much like doing laundry or walking the dog in sub-zero temperatures, analytics are a necessary evil.

They’re a bother to track and can be pretty dull (unless percentages really do it for you), but they’re also the foundation for a whole lot of your business and audience development strategy. Avoiding them can leave you with a big pile of… crap.

Understanding what’s happening in that digital space can inform the types of content you share, the products you sell, or the things you write about. But what numbers matter most?

To get started, track these key metrics each week:

Pageviews: How many times a page on your site was loaded by a browser.

Visits: The number of times a person came to your site from literally anywhere else on the internet.

Unique Visitors: The number of individuals who went to your website in a given time period — they only count once, so if they went to your site 100 times in a week, they still just count as one unique visitor.

Pageviews/Visit: The average number of pages visitors loaded while on your site.
Did they click around through pages or products?
Check out your About Me?
Or hit up your Contact Us page?
Those all count.

Time Spent: The average amount of time each visitor spent on your site.

Bounce Rate: The percentage of visitors who left your site after only checking out one page.

Referral Traffic: How much of your traffic came from other sources — ideally, you’d break this down by what those sources were (social media, other websites, partner sites, organic search).

Once you get a feel for these numbers, you’ll have a good idea of how people are using your site. That way, when you make changes, you can track whether they’re helping or hurting engagement.

Who knows, you may just develop a love for percentages after all.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is a platform on which websites can be built. Widely considered to be the most powerful content management platform on the web, WordPress powers nearly 25% of the Internet and almost a quarter of the top 10 million websites.

Trusted by CNN, Forbes, (Justin Bieber), and many others, WordPress allows users of any skill level to create a fantastic-looking blog or website with ease & on the quick.

Absolutely zero coding knowledge or experience is required in order to dive into WordPress.

This amazing technology is fully-customizable and designed with the latest web technologies in mind.

It can automatically adjust itself to reformat and look great on mobile devices like iPhones, iPads, Androids and others—of course a WordPress website will also look great on your desktop as well.

HOW DO I GET ONE?

WordPress sounds great, but how do I get started?

There are two generally accepted easy ways to get a WordPress site up and going with the minimum amount of effort.

First is https://wordpress.org/ (not .com).

Your other option is to register a domain name (such as https://yourcompanyname.com) with a company such as SiteGroud or WPEngine and have them help you install your new WordPress site.

Need more guidance? Feel fee to connect with us here: www.virtualpartnerwebdesign.com/connect/

How to Get Better Photos for Your Website

The difference between cheesy stock photos and unique, on-brand art on your company’s website is like the difference between a slice of pizza from the year-old frozen box in your fridge and an artisanal pie bubbling fresh out of the oven from a quaint little shop in Rome.

(Cheesy photos, bad. Cheesy pizza, good.)

What we’re saying is – Your site’s art counts for a lot. It’s how readers will view your brand and its degree of professionalism. But that doesn’t mean you need to hire an army of high-cost professional photographers.

Instead, try these photo hacks (and you may just save enough for a cheese-filled trip to Roma):

Find up-and-comers. Ask photographers’ assistants if they’re willing to shoot for a byline. The work of these young professionals is often top-notch, and they may share a bit of it in exchange for exposure and an addition to their portfolio.

Hone your stock search skills. On free photo sites like Pixabay (or paid ones like Getty or Corbis), always use the advanced search functions. Try searching for images without people in them, add the word “illustration” to your search terms to get more conceptual results, or look for black-and-white photography for a sophisticated feel.

Create custom templates for specific franchises you may have on your site. You can set them up in Photoshop or use free editors like CanvaPixlr, PicMonkey, or GIMP. They’ll make the content feel more consistent and the regular stories more easily recognizable to your audience.

3 Questions to Ask About Your Web Design

Every few years, web design trends seem to shift.

First, there were busy homepages with tons of headlines and graphics. Then the tide came in: clean pages that scrolled forever were hot. It’s easy to get caught up in what everyone else is doing, but the most important thing is to recognize what’s best for you and your business.

When you’re building (or redesigning) your site, ask yourself the following questions:

1. What’s more important: pretty or usable?

If your e-commerce site looks more like a blog or a billboard, that’s a problem. Customers should immediately know what they’re getting when they visit your page.

2. Is every page consistent?

We’re talking every page, from product info to order received. Your branding should be universal across them all.

3. Are you making users work for what they want?

If so, change that. Visitors shouldn’t have to navigate treacherous terrain to complete their task. Any hard sells or marketing should be subtle. You've already got them in the door, you don’t want to push them out.

Design 101: How to Set Up Your First Website

There’s nothing more oppressive and terrifying than a blank space. (And not just because Taylor Swift might use it to write a song about your relationship.)

Turning your brand-new, totally empty website into an attractive, functioning tool for growing your business is a big task.

You’ve claimed your URL and selected your design. So now what?

Here’s where to start

1. Decide how many pages you will have and what they will be. Home / About Us / FAQ / Services / Online Store and Contact Us are popular choices. Consider a blog or news page where you can provide useful information, press releases, or current events.

2. Gather the photos you want to display. A picture is worth a thousand words (and possibly actual moolah), so finding the right ones is crucial to honing in on your brand.

3. Help visitors find you & get in touch. Prominently post your contact info and link to directions on Google maps if you have a local business. You may also want to create a contact form to make it easy for visitors to reach out. Then, add links to your social media profiles. Communication is key, so use all possible options. Boost engagement by encouraging visitors to follow you.

4. Finally, make sure you include a way for visitors to join your email marketing list so you can follow up and keep in touch.

From there, you can add on important plugins that speak to your specific business (like ones that book appointments or let customers purchase from your site).

Ta-da! You’re now the proud owner of a gorgeous, working website.