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Email Signature / Footer Tips

Email Signature / Footer Tips


Posted By on Nov 5, 2013

  Your email signature is a marketing opportunity. Your original email may be forwarded, or carbon copied to someone who has never heard of your business before. Or, when making first contact with a customer, a professional looking email signature, can create the impression that your business is also professional – and potentially seal the deal.   Make a list of the information to include Obvious things like, contact phone numbers, email address, website URL, your name and your business name seem like common sense – but it’s amazing how easy it can be to finish your email signature and discover you’ve forgotten something vitally important. As the footer is at the bottom of the email – you can really make it as long as you like. So you can include your products and services – or a latest special offer – or an up-sell for existing customers.   You don’t need to know HTML I won’t lie to you, a little HTML knowledge will come in handy, but it is not essential. As most businesses use Microsoft Outlook, (which doesn’t believe in listening to your code anyway) Microsoft Word can be used to edit and create an adequate email signature. If you want something really fancy, then you’re going to need some fancy HTML and CSS code.   So where do I start? Colours, Fonts and Layout. If you already have a branding kit / style guide – then use the colours and fonts specified in there. But bear in mind that not every device will have your specific font – so choose one that’s either very close, or very neutral. Arial, Helvetica, Times New Roman, Verdana and Trebuchet are the most widely supported neutral fonts. They should be able to be viewed on any device. You can view a full list of fonts supported in apple mobile devices, here. Android devices will likely convert your font to theirs anyway, so there is nothing much you can do except to test and see how it will look.   To edit your signature for Outlook 2007, go through the following menus | Message (tab)| Include (group)| Signatures |  And finally, click Signatures. You can create, or modify signatures from within here. To edit your signature for Outlook 2010 & 2013, go through the following menus | create a new Message | Include (group) | Signature | and then click Signatures. You should arrive at a screen similar to the Office 2010/2013 screen below, where you can create a new signature, edit an existing one and paste your signature from Microsoft Word.   Design tips Images can be inserted using...

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Top 20 Welcome Pages From the 90s

Top 20 Welcome Pages From the 90s


Posted By on Sep 20, 2013

In the 90s, if your brand was big and important, you could show off by having a welcome page. Characterized by little text, pretty images and a big “enter here” button – these welcome pages were horrible for search engines – but because you don’t need to be searched for if you are “Coca Cola”, you could get away with it. Today, 0f course, if you want to be found on the internet, welcome pages are a big no no. Search Engines hate them, and your Google Ranking will be punished. Thanks to the wayback machine, here are 20 of the top welcome and landing pages from the big brands of the 90s, in no particular order.   20. Coca Cola. Designed by their ad agency, it looks nice, but fails SEO.   19. Adidas. Pictures, pictures, pictures – but no text. At least it had a menu   18. Lego. Made by my little brother for a primary school computer project, Technically not a welcome page.   17. Sony. It’s a, errr Sony. It’s probably the best example from this period of “good looks” and usable content for Search Engines.   16. Qantas. Qantas choosing a combination approach: with the initial page view being quite pretty, but filled with text beneath, to enhance SEO.   15. Atari. The 80s icon, together with Jagwire (a cable company) trying to keep up appearances in the 90s.   14. Hewlett-Packard Do you remember when a screen resolution of 640×480 was the norm? HP remembers.   13. Sega The classic welcome page approach from Sega, little information for users on this screen. Luckily they had heaps of gold rings to spend on upgrading it in the years ahead.   12. The BBC Compared to today, the BBC’s front page is stark and nakedly minimalist.   11. IBM Surprisingly, the tech giant did not feel the need to have much branding on their welcome page, although they do have lead stories.(some images are missing from this page)   10. US Robotics My 56K US Robotics modem helped me play online, although I could never get enough speed out of my phone line.   09. Umbro Umbro was a really big brand in the 90s, but they weren’t big enough to finish their website. “Under Construction”  is web developer speak for, “I’ll get to it one day”. To be fair, they eventually did.   08. Casio I loved my Casio watch in year 7, and the coolest kid in school had a Calculator watch, by Casio. At least the Casio welcome page was colourful.   07. Nokia The Nokia 5110 was the ultimate phone...

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What is repeating content? It’s basically another page on your site, (internal repeating content) or on another site (external repeating content). Repeating content is bad because Google and other search engines, treat the repeating content with contempt! Any repeating content is particularly targeted by Google’s robots, indexing your site, displaying the following message: “Search Results Omitted”. The short of it is that instead of getting two or more rankings on one page, you have one. Less presence. So how do you know if you have duplicate content? Look for warnings in Google Webmaster. Google Webmaster is a free service that gives you an inside view into how Google sees your website. Google Webmaster will tell you if you are being penalised for duplicate content. Alternatively, use http://www.copyscape.com to check you site for external sites, copying your content. Obviously, you need to write your own copy, for your own benefit. Make it unique, interesting and full of key words and search engines will optimise your...

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Welcome pages and SEO

Welcome pages and SEO


Posted By on Aug 16, 2013

In the early days of the internet, welcome pages were as popular as the Spice Girls. What’s a welcome page? It’s a page with little content except for a “welcome to our site” message, an image and a few buttons to click on to give you access to the site. Big companies (like Coca Cola and Nike) didn’t really need to be visible in Google – people knew where to find them. Welcome pages are bad for SEO, and bad for your Google ranking, and they annoy people. Why would you make time poor people have to work to find the information they are looking for? It makes no sense to me, and more importantly it makes life hard for the Google robots crawling your site. Don’t do it. Feed the Google robots lashings of text rich content on your home page, served with alt tags on all your images with a side serving of meta tags…...

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An idea can change your life. Sometimes a problem needs to be reversed in order for a solution to present itself… Stuck on ideas for a problem? After trying to solve it and getting stuck: How would you go about doing the opposite? How would you oppose someone trying to fix your problem? Say you want to get people to sign up for your company newsletter, and they’re not. You’ve tried working out a solution and you’re stuck. If you ask a different question, you may get closer to the answer. Why not ask instead, “why would people want to leave my list” or “how can I stop people signing up to my list”, or “how do I make my list undesirable”. This can get you out of your old way of thinking and into a new one. Maybe the solution is making your list exclusive, so that not everyone can join. Create some urgency to join. Or you could suddenly discover that there are some undesirable elements in your sign up, or positioning of your list already there, that will help you make a change. Again, it’s about shifting your thinking out of the rut of the ordinary by asking better questions. Happy...

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