Are Branding and SEO at Odds?

Several items have crossed my virtual desktop recently that had me wondering: “When did branding and SEO become opposing goals for a web site redesign?” For example, I recently read Hub Spot’s materials on Web site redesigns. I also listened to a podcast by SEO Rockstars called Branding versus SEO on Corporate Websites which used the Target web site as a case study. Both of these presentations seem to suggest that branding and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) were at odds with one another, and that SEO should be of primary importance. Let’s start with what we all agree on: You should build a web site so that search engines can easily find you. This means use of key words in content, titles and tags. Key content should be searchable. Which means it should not be embedded in graphic files or within a flash presentation. Content matters. You need to have lots of fresh and inviting content. Don’t redesign without good […]

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Twitter Would Have Failed Without Design

When I first heard about Twitter, I thought it was pretty stupid. I didn’t care to read the banalities of someone’s Tweets as they ate, waited, shopped, etc. I’m not alone in questioning its merit, there are many, many articles wondering what the long term impact of Twitter will be. However, in the short term, Twitter is growing like crazy, with more than 32 million accessing twitter.com in April of this year. So it is obviously appealing to some, at least enough to set up and test it out once or twice. Picture Twitter Without the Design Recently, Twitter has experienced frequent outages and over-capacity issues. The other day, I went to twitter.com and the page content (HTML) loaded but the CSS style sheet did not. Below is what the login screen looks like without the benefit of design. If you thought Twitter was mundane when it’s working correctly, it’s much worse without the benefit of design. Seeing this twitter.com […]

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5 Tips for More Readable RSS Feeds: Good Typography & Design

If you write a blog or have other content that people subscribe to in an RSS feed, read these 5 tips to make your feed more readable. Before the tips, ask yourself whether you want to have the entire post available in the feed, or if it will be truncated. If it’s truncated, readers are forced to click to your site to finish reading. Reasons to truncate: To increase revenues for advertisements that are only seen on your site To increase the chance that a reader will move from your blog post to another part of your site Reasons to provide a full feed: It is more likely that readers will actually read your content, as there is a significant drop off whenever you ask people to click through to read the full post If you are working to provide expertise and build brand presence, it’s more important that people actually read your thoughts, regardless of where they do it […]

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How PayPal's Brand Affects the Brand of Your E-Commerce Site

PayPal is an extremely popular tool that allows small business owners to be able to accept credit card payments on their web site. Their payment processing service has a much smaller entry price point than setting up a full-fledged shopping cart and establishing a merchant account with your bank. If you’re only selling occasionally, or selling only low cost items it is often one of the most cost effective ways to set up an e-commerce web site and allow your customers to pay online using a credit card. How it works & some history Just to explain… Originally, PayPal was a way to send and receive payments by linking one’s bank account to one’s PayPal account and paying using PayPal itself. This would be an alternative to using a credit card. This service is still offered and is touted by PayPal as a way to “Pay without revealing your credit card or bank information.” However, what I described above, is […]

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Starting a Blog: Tips Based on 60 Days of Blogging

It has been an interesting journey starting this blog. I actually have previously helped a few of my client’s with their own blogs, but this is a first for me personally. I thought I’d share my thoughts and tips now that I am at day 60 of running the blog. Start with a soft launch A soft launch means that you are using the blog tools and adding content, but you’re not screaming for attention yet. If you choose to use WordPress you can even turn off the ability for Google and other search engines to find you. (If you do this, make sure you remember to turn it back on later!) By adding content before you officially go live, you will have a few articles and entries to interest readers when they do arrive. For Visible Logic’s blog, I created posts before adding the link to the blog into the navigation of the site. That means the blog was […]

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