• FAQs

          Search engine optimization (SEO) helps businesses drive visits to their website through organic search traffic. Given that the top organic search results receive a third of the clicks, a decline in ranking could be detrimental for your business. Implementing SEO best practices on your website will help to ensure that your web content is seen by as many potential customers as possible. The more visitors you have, the better your chances are of converting those visits into sales!

          Local search engine optimization (SEO) helps local businesses gain visibility by optimizing their local business listings for local search. A business that leverages local SEO will include its address, phone number, local opening times, and exact location in the form of a local citation. The goal is to rank for local searches which are usually performed by people in a specific geographical region looking for a business near them.

          We typically see results within the first 30 to 60 days, but when it comes to SEO, there are many factors at play. It's important to remember that SEO is a long-term strategy and results may not come as fast at you wish.

        • FAQs

          Digital advertising uses the internet to send advertisements to customers who are online through different websites and social media platforms like Google, Bing, LinkedIn and Facebook.

          The price for Google Ads management depends on the monthly ad spend. For accounts with $1,000 in monthly ad spend, the price is $550/month. Between $1,000 and $5,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $950/month. For $5,000 to $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $2,000/month. For more than $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $4,500/month.

          The price for Social Media Ads management depends on the monthly ad spend. For accounts with $1,000 in monthly ad spend, the price is $550/month. Between $1,000 and $5,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $950/month. For $5,000 to $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $2,000/month. For more than $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $4,500/month.

        • FAQs

          This depends on the complexity and size of a redesign and if eCommerce is needed. On average, it takes around 14-18 weeks from the web design intensive stage to launch.

          If your website experiences the following issues: it’s not responsive on all devices, has a slow loading speed, the design appears old and tired, users don’t spend long on the site, sales are stagnant, or your business is going through a rebranding - your website needs a redesign to boost your brand awareness and sales.

          Sometimes there’s no need to rebuild a website. Minor edits, refreshing page content and images, or restructuring page layout for SEO best practices can boost traffic and sales.

        • FAQs

          Semantic search launched in 2013 with the release of Google's Hummingbird update. Since then, Google's search engine has become more complex. The integration of machine learning, with RankBrain, and NLP, with BERT, has enabled the search engine to better understand the context of a query and deliver more personalized and targeted results. Semantic SEO is the process of creating machine-readable content using structured data and linked open data to help search engines better understand your content.

          On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing individual web pages in order to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines. On-page SEO refers to both the content and HTML source code of a page that can be optimized, as opposed to off-page SEO which refers to links and other external signals. From meta tags to page content, website structure, and HTML, on-page optimization services are focused on making your website more visible to search engines.

          Structured data refers to any organized data that conforms to a certain format, such as information in a relational database. When information is highly structured and predictable, search engines can more easily organize and display it in creative ways. Structured data involves using a piece of code that is laid out in a specific format easily understood by search engines. The search engines read the code and use it to display search results in a more dynamic way.

        • FAQs

          An SEO agency has experts in different areas of search engine optimization that may be out of the realm of your marketing team's abilities. SEO can be very complex and time-consuming. Furthermore, as search engine algorithms change it can be difficult to stay current on the latest ranking factors and strategies for improving online visibility. You will likely see a greater return on investment and better results from using a professional SEO agency than you would from tackling this on your own.

          As a digital marketing agency, SMA Marketing provides products and services in four areas: SEO, Local SEO, Digital Advertising, and Web Design

          We focus on building authentic, long-lasting relationships with our clients. We’re goal oriented and results driven and believe in doing good and making a difference in the world.

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Looking for a Web Designer? 10 Things to Keep In Mind

For a majority of your customers, your website is typically the first place they come in contact with your brand. Learning how to find a web designer and having a strong online presence is essential for all businesses today. In a study done by MineWhat.com, they found that:

  • 81% of shoppers conduct online research before they make a purchase.
  • 60% begin by using a search engine to find the products they want.
  • 61% will read product reviews before making any purchase.
  • On average, a consumer will visit three stores before making their purchase.

Today’s shoppers are looking for more than just the best price, they also want a great user experience. If your website doesn’t engage your users or it’s hard to navigate, they are going somewhere else and quickly. Below are a few website user statistics that were compiled by the team over at Impact Brand:

  • 52% of users said that a bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company.
  • Mobile users are 5 times more likely to abandon a task if a site isn’t optimized for mobile.
  • Video helps persuade 73% of people to buy a product or a service.
  • 60% of consumers feel more positive about a brand after consuming content from it.
  • 79% of people who don’t like what they find on one site will go back and search for another site.
  • 48% of users say they feel frustrated and annoyed when on sites that are poorly optimized for mobile search.

So as you can see, giving your users and potential customers a great web experience is key. But how should you go about finding a web design company that can create the experience your business is looking to deliver? For many small businesses, they either build it themselves or have a friend’s son who took a class in high school do it. This is a risky move, considering the impact your website can have on your business.

While your website may not be where the transactions of your business take place, it is where your potential customers decide whether or not to do business with you. Taking the time to get it right and invest in your new website will pay off big in the long run.

10 Things to Keep in Mind When Hiring a Web Designer

Below are 10 things to keep in mind when looking for a freelance web designer or web design agency to help you build your new site.

1. A Good Reputation

Just like any other industry, having a good reputation speaks volumes. Ask designers for references from companies they’ve worked with. Check out their Google, Facebook, and other review sites to see what people have said about them and their work.

2. Respect Your Ideas

You know your business better than anyone else. Sharing your insight is extremely valuable. When interviewing designers, make sure they actually listen to your ideas. Sure, they are the “creatives” but your voice needs to be heard.

3. Willing to Give Suggestions

On the flip side, web designers should be able and willing to share their ideas. You are hiring them to design, so that is what they need to do. You don’t want a “yes man”, you want a creative partner to bring your company’s online presence alive.

4. Have an Understanding of SEO

Since having a website won’t give you more visibility on its own, Search Engine Optimization or SEO, is vital to a thriving website. In order for your site to show up in search, it needs to be optimized. Your web designer should have a basic, if not in-depth understanding of how to build and structure a website. This will ensure that your site will not only look great but also get crawled by the search engines and have a better chance of ranking.

For more on this topic check out: 10 SEO Mistakes to Avoid During Your Next Resign

5. Have a CMS they Work With

Having a Content Management System (or CMS) that allows you, the owner, to easily update your site will make your life much better. This is why we build our sites on HubSpot or WordPress. It allows the owner to make changes if needed. While static HTML works, unless you have a knowledge of it, you’ll have to go back to the designer over and over again for updates.

6. Know & Use Responsive Design

More than half of all searches are done on a mobile device. For most people, their phones are the typical way they interact online. This means your site must look and function great on mobile. Responsive design enables your website to adapt or respond to the size of a screen without losing its look and feel. Make sure any designer you connect with knows and uses responsive design.

7. Have Clear Timelines & Expectations

Knowing up front what the design process will look like will save you a ton of stress. Agency and freelance designers must have good project management skills. Ask prospective designers what the timeline and expectations for your project are. If they have none, I can assure you the process will be painful.

8. Understand Conversion

Having a “pretty” website is pointless unless it actually works. Conversions are actions you want your visitors to take such as filling out a form, clicking a link or calling your business. Conversion elements are an essential part of web design because they help your visitor engage with the site. Make sure you hire a designer or agency that knows how to optimize your conversion rate.

9. Keep Up With Trends

You want your site to be relevant. This is where you need a web designer that keeps up with trends. Professional web designers have portfolios that you can review to get a sense of their work. Compare their portfolio to what you like and see going on in your industry today. If they haven’t kept up with the trends, they’re probably a bad choice.

10. Aren’t Super Cheap

We all want a deal, but when it comes to web design services, the old “you get what you pay for” saying is true. There are a number of great low-cost options, but for a customized site expect to pay anywhere around $6000 and up. When investing this type of money into a site, you will typically have better function and a more secure site than if you use a free platform.

When it comes to building your brand online, your website is your digital front door. Make sure you take time and do your research before hiring a web designer. Investing in your company’s digital presence is money and time well spent. If you have questions about your web design projects or if you need a new site, contact us. We’d be more than happy to help you through the web design process.

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in 2017 and has been updated with fresh content.

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