Matt Hoffpauir Appointed To “The Adoptive Families Of Houston” Board Of Directors Marketing Chair

Matt Hoffpauir Appointed To “The Adoptive Families Of Houston” Board Of Directors Marketing Chair

15000 Cubit’s Managing Partner and CEO, Matt Hoffpauir, was voted in as the new Marketing Chair on The Adoptive Families Of Houston board of directors during the April 6th member meeting. Adoptive Families of Houston (AFH) is a 501c3 non-profit organization established to help adoptive families benefit from the education, guidance, and support of professionals and parents who have shared in the unique experience of adoption. With the needs of adoptive parents and children in mind, Adoptive Families of Houston offers a variety of activities each year including educational programs, monthly playgroups for the children and an annual family picnic.

When asked to comment on why The Adoptive Families of Houston was important to him, Matt replied that “The founder of The Adoptive Families of Houston, Kathie Otte, helped guide my family through the adoption process. The education she was able to give us was eye opening, and with her assistance we were able to navigate the difficult process of adopting our baby boy. Before we started working with Kathy and The Adoptive Families of Houston organization, there were so many aspects of the adoption process that seemed mysterious and finding answers was difficult. It shouldn’t be that way and I want to help others families to have the same support, before and after the adoption process, that my family had. I plan on using my 20 years of digital marketing experience to help them reach a greater number of adoptive families, potential adoptive families, and adoptees in the Houston area.”

The Adoptive Families Of Houston’s Goals

  • To educate parents on topics unique to adoptive families
  • To provide a supportive environment where adoptive parents and adoptees can feel comfortable discussing issues related to adoption
  • To provide opportunities for all members of the adoptive family to socialize with others who have been touched by adoption
  • To provide adopted children with a sense of belonging through friendships with other adoptees

When asked to comment on why The Adoptive Families of Houston was important to him, Matt replied that “The founder of The Adoptive Families of Houston, Kathie Otte, helped guide my family through the adoption process. The education she was able to give us was eye opening, and with her assistance we were able to navigate the difficult process of adopting our baby boy. Before we started working with Kathy and The Adoptive Families of Houston organization, there were so many aspects of the adoption process that seemed mysterious and finding answers was difficult. It shouldn’t be that way and I want to help others families to have the same support, before and after the adoption process, that my family had. I plan on using my 20 years of digital marketing experience to help them reach a greater number of adoptive families, potential adoptive families, and adoptees in the Houston area.”

Has Your Website Been Upgraded To Meet Google’s “Mobile Friendly” Requirements?

Has Your Website Been Upgraded To Meet Google’s “Mobile Friendly” Requirements?

Earlier this year Google made a major announcement that could be affecting your website rankings. Starting April 21, 2015, we (Google) will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.” What does it mean when they refer to “ranking signal”? Search engines use hundreds of metrics to determine your rank and one of them will now be the “mobile-friendliness” of your website. Is your site easy to read on small mobile devices or do users click away because it’s too hard to navigate? Does your site scale to fit all screen sizes or just display a small version of your desktop site? If your website is deemed not mobile-friendly, you will be experiencing a drop in mobile traffic as you’re are pushed down in rank.  If you are running a mobile-friendly site, then you will benefit by being included in Googles mobile search results and your users will have a much better user experience because they can easily locate and find the information they are looking for. Mobile use continues to climb and the search engines are taking notice. StatCounter reported a 67% increase in mobile users in 2014 alone. Now is the time to “future proof” your sites to ensure that they are delivering a great experience to mobile users and that you are not being penalized for having an outdated site. mobile-internet-usage-soars-by-67-perc

 

How do I know if my site is mobile-friendly?

Google has created a simple tool that evaluates your site and lets you know if your site qualifies as mobile-friendly. This test takes just moments to complete, click here to test your site and see your results.

What steps should I take to become mobile-friendly?

If you get a negative score on the mobile-friendly test, then it’s time to look closely at how people are using your site on mobile devices. Check your analytics to see if mobile devices have a higher bounce rate on certain pages. This could help indicate where people are having difficulty. If you do not have the technical expertise to correct these problems, we highly recommend working with a development team that understands responsive website design and development. We’ve helped many of our clients create mobile friendly sites, such as Dude’s Construction, and many others.

What is responsive web design?

Responsive web design is one of the best options for creating a website that looks great on all devices. Responsive design has a fluid grid layout that expands and contracts based on the size of the screen giving readers the ultimate viewing experience. No need for a separate mobile website. A good responsive design lets you edit a single site and have confidence that everyone can use your site without difficulty. Want an example of good responsive designs? Click here to view some award winning site designs that respond beautifully. Open each site and drag the width of your browser window down to see how the site reacts to various sizes. For more information on responsive design, or to have us suggest some recommendations on making your site mobile-friendly, contact the 15000 Cubits team today.

How Do Social Media Signals Affect Your SEO?

How Do Social Media Signals Affect Your SEO?

Increased Web Traffic

It’s easy to see how posting quality content to an audience that chooses to follow your business would result in increased web traffic. Your social media audience is full of prospective new business and it doesn’t cost you a cent to engage them. Search engines love to see increased web traffic from social sites. It’s evidence that your business is being talked about, is important and you are a leader in your industry.

Increased Domain Authority

Backlinko has stated that social signals “may increase a site’s overall authority.” When more traffic is directed to your site from trusted social networks, it starts to reinforce your site’s perceived value and authority. Google is likely recognizing these social signals as “brand signals,” which they love.

Link Building

As your awesome content is shared across the web, there are plenty of publishers that would love to pull a quote and link back to your articles. Perhaps you have a great infographic or video that is being shared regularly. These all turn into natural inbound links which are a very positive SEO signal that will move your site up the ranks.

Improved Rank On Social Search Engines

The social media platforms themselves are powerful search engines, so it makes perfect sense to optimize your posts to help your business show up at the top of their results. For example, local businesses would want to have a fully optimized Facebook page so that when people are searching on Facebook, they’ll have a strong shot at being ranked at the top of the list. One of the most popular search engines in the world is also a social media site – YouTube. Millions of searches are performed on YouTube every day and everyone wants to show up in those results. Having complete profiles, keywords in your video titles and descriptions, and a lot of shares, likes and comments will drive your video to the top of search results. This is a strong example of social signals affecting your rank. Managing your social media can be a time-consuming task. 43% of businesses spend more than 6 hours per week on social media, and it’s not uncommon to find more active businesses spending over 30 hours per week managing their social strategy. We’ve personally documented cases where lack of social media activity has caused businesses to fall below their competitors in organic search rank, so when we plan a complete inbound marketing campaign for a client, social media management is always part of our strategy. Social and SEO both thrive on content marketing and they go hand in hand. If you’d like help managing your social media, we offer an affordable social media service that fits just about every budget. Contact us for more information.

Social Media Calls-To-Action – Do They Really Work?

Social Media Calls-To-Action – Do They Really Work?

The power of the call-to-action can’t be ignored. Traditional marketers have asked for the sale for decades, but many people have feared putting call-to-actions into their social media posts in an effort to appear less “pushy.” It’s certainly true that you don’t want to constantly bombard your audience with sales messages and totally miss out on the point of “social media”, but there are a few simple words you can add to your social media posts to increase conversions with very little effort.

Here is a fantastic infographic from Hubspot that outlines how effective adding simple phrases to your posts can be.

 

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5 Resources For Finding Free Stock Photos

5 Resources For Finding Free Stock Photos

Businesses need photography for a variety of reasons. Professional original photography can never be beat, but some circumstances and budgets require us to look for “stock photos” to save time or money. The old saying “you get what you pay for” has never been more true than when discussing photography. Locating the perfect image with a free license for its use can be extremely challenging and may take a lot of searching, but we’ve compiled a list of resources that will get you started in the right direction.

Whether your business is service or product based, having a powerful visual image in your marketing campaign can give you a great advantage over your competitors. Strong visual content attracts attention, gets more social media interaction and can make your brand much more memorable.

Unsplash.com

Unsplash is a beautiful resource for people looking for incredible landscape and city photography. Their collection has very few photos of people, so if you are looking for that style, you might want to try elsewhere.

Pikwizard.com

Pikwizard has over 100,000 free images on their website and more are added daily. Unlike many free stock image sources, Pikwizard has a lot of photos of people.

MorgueFile.com

MorgueFile.com is another great source of photography. The term “morgueFile” is popular in the newspaper business to describe the file that holds past issues flats. Although the term has been used by illustrators, comic book artist, designers and teachers as well. The purpose of this site is to provide free image reference material for use in all creative pursuits. This is the world wide web’s morgueFile.

FreeImages.com

FreeImages.com has over 388,000 images on file and many of them are available at no charge.

Stocksnap.io

Stock Snap is one of my personal favorite photo sources when I’m looking for a generic “around the office” type of shot. These are great filler images for designers to use until you can have professional photos done.

Gratisography.com

Gratisography has some of the highest quality and most artistic images I’ve found. Looking for something a little out of the ordinary? This may be your best bet.

There are countless other great stock photography sources online. This is just a starting point so be sure to tell us about your favorite free stock photo sites. We’ll add them to our next list.