The App is here: Google Analytics and iPhone are now friends

The Google Analytics App has landed!

IPhone users rejoice! Google have finally released an official Google Analytics app. Released on Thursday, the free app is perfect for keeping tabs on your site’s analytics whilst on the move.

I’ve been playing around with the app for a few days now and am finding the real-time site information particularly compelling. For example, after a quick glance at my phone I could tell you; how many people are on our site, whether they’re returning or new visitors, what country they’ve come from and, in some cases, their keyword information. Wait… it’s now changed! Like I said, real time.

Search for “Google Analytics” when in the app store to download the app.

Interested in learning more about Google Analytics? Come to our London based training course. See here for more information: Google Analytics Training Course

This post was by Mathew Aitken at MadeSimpleFind Mathew on Google+

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How do I add a website to the “Contributor to” section on Google Plus?

The “Contributor to” section of Google Plus is great for letting followers know what websites and blogs you’re involved with. That’s mine there ->.

Adding links to this area is simple:

  1. Select the “Home” dropdown and click “Profile”
  2. Select “About”
  3. Scroll down to the “Links” section and select “Edit”
  4. Select “Add custom link”, enter the label and URL and then select “Save”

Just like this:

You can even add websites that you’re no longer involved with. To do this, when at step 4, select the “Current contributor” dropdown and click “Past contributor” instead. Alternatively, if the link has already been added, click the pen icon next to the relevant link and then click “Past contributor”.

Would you like to learn more about using Google Plus? See here for information on our
An Introduction to Google+” training course.

This post was by Mathew Aitken at MadeSimpleFind Mathew on Google+

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FAO Facebook: I want to see Most Recent, not Top Stories!

Most Recent please!

Last week happened to include the birthdays of four of my Facebook friends. No news there – that kind of stuff happens. Strange then that Facebook did deem it newsworthy. Let me explain.

I’m not talking about a birthday notification on the right of the screen reminding me it’s a friend’s birthday so I can then send my wishes to their wall (which while I’m on it… Birthday card > phone call > text message > don’t bother > wall post):

No, I’m talking about via my “News Feed”. All. Day. Long. You see Facebook seems to think the preferred setting for my News Feed is “Top Stories”. Even if I try and switch it to Most Recent, a few hours later it flips back to Top Stories.

Now this is a particular problem on birthdays when said birthday boy or girl’s wall gets a lot of activity; the kind of activity that makes it a Top Story and therefore a permanent fixture on my feed for the day. What can we do about this? Continue reading

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What can the Brazil – Chile game teach you about your business’s Twitter activity?

Get tactical with your business’s Twitter activity

On Saturday night Brazil and Chile played-out arguably the game of the World Cup.

And what’s that got to do with Social Media?

16.3 million Tweets were sent during the match – a record for a live event (the previous holder was the last Super Bowl). There’s no doubt about it, Twitter and Sport go together like Luis Suarez and… oh it’s too easy. Let’s just say they’re a perfect pairing.

And what’s that got to with using Twitter for Business?

Two words: Events - Hashtags

It reminded me of just how valuable hashtags can be for small businesses when they’re taking part in events. Pretty much every corporate event I’ve attended this year has been accompanied by a hashtag that I’ve been encouraged to use when Tweeting about the event. Continue reading

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4 ways Twitter can help your small business

If you’re in the process of setting up a small business, getting started on social media might not be at the top of your priority list.chick reisze for OG

However Twitter has proven to be one of the most effective tools available to business owners who are starting out and should definitely be given a go. If your business is only just starting to take off, Twitter can be one of the main ways people find out about you and what you can provide for them. Here are four other ways using Twitter can help your small business.

1. As a small business, you can have a more personal connection with customers. This is an advantage you have over bigger companies and Twitter is the most effective way to ensure this personal connection continues. You can show off the tone and personality of your business through the Tweets you send. Making Tweets funny (although obviously in an appropriate way), and Tweeting about what goes on behind the scenes at your company can help build a connection to your brand and the people behind it. Being able to interact with existing and potential customers through Twitter can strengthen that personal connection, making your small business seem approachable and appealing.

2. Twitter is an effective way to deal with queries or complaints. As well as reinforcing that all important personal connection, replying directly to any complaints or questions you get through Twitter can get them sorted easily and quickly. Generally, people will only Tweet a query that can be answered simply (within 140 characters!), so doing it this way can leave your time free for other important tasks. If anyone does need a more detailed answer, you can still use Twitter to assure them an email or phone call will be on its way. Publicly responding to criticism might seem like a wrong move, but as long as it stays polite, it can be a good way of proving to other customers that you can accept responsibility and grow from mistakes to provide great service.

3. Twitter can make people aware of what you’re selling. Perhaps the most useful thing Twitter can do for your small business is promote the product you are trying to sell in the hope that it will attract customers – this is probably the overall aim of your social media presence after all. It’s never a good look to constantly bombard your followers with promotional Tweets, but photos and video clips that subtlety promote your product are good ways to get some business. Other ways to Tweet into people’s consciousness could be mentioning changes that are happening within the company, highlighting any events that are coming up, or Tweeting about a new product line. This can all help to drum up sales for your business.

4. Use Twitter to make friends and keep an eye on the competition. Connecting with similar or local small businesses can help you to create a network of like-minded people who will always be available for advice on any issues or problems that may arise in your business, and you can do the same for them. You can also use Twitter to keep an eye on what these other businesses are up to, what seems to be working for them well and not so well, and use this knowledge to strengthen your own brand.

Twitter isn’t as scary as it first seems is it?! Let us know if you put any of our Twitter tips into practice.

If you want to learn more about using Twitter to help your business come along to our Twitter for Business training course.

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Top 10 apps for Glastonbury 2014

10 great apps for GlastonburyHeading to Glastonbury festival this weekend?

Get ready for one of the best weekends of your life! But while half the fun of Glasto is getting lost, confused and very muddy, there are always moments when you’ll need a little help to get your head straight. If you’re taking your smart phone with you, these apps will be life savers. You can thank us on Monday…

1. The Official Glastonbury App. The most informative app on the scene, the official offering from Glastonbury festival will ensure you don’t miss a moment of the action. It includes full stage listings, a map and real time festival news, as well as giving you the option to create your own schedules and set reminders. And for the first time this year, they’ve teamed up with the BBC to stream their live coverage of six stages through the app, so if you’re totally lost and nowhere near a stage, at least you could watch on your phone! Get the official Glastonbury Festival app .

2. GroupMe. It goes without saying that you’ll get separated from your friends over the weekend. Instead of trying to shout over the music down the phone to each other, use GroupMe to create a group messaging system that will help keep everyone together. You can share your location with your group, as well as photos or videos to make where you are even clearer. GroupMe will even work on older model phones if you’re one of the sensible few who leave their expensive smart phones at home! Download GroupMe.

3. Shazam. This music recognition app will be helpful if you’ve stumbled across an obscure tent and need to find out who’s playing. Equally useful in any of the bars or dance tents, when a song comes on that you KNOW you know, but the Glastonbury atmosphere has gone to your head and you just can’t remember… Get Shazam.

4. Instagram. Glastonbury Festival is one of the most photogenic events of the year and you’ll want to take a lot of photos: better to use Instagram than that disposable camera someone told you it would be a good idea to bring. The genius of Instagram is the filters, which will make cloudy skies look blue and make you look far less tired. You can share your photos to other social networks too, so your jealous friends at home can’t avoid them anywhere. Oh, and make sure you use Glastonbury related hash tags on your posts! Download Instagram.

5. Red Cross First Aid. Okay, so we’re not saying use this app in a serious emergency, but hopefully if there are any injuries or illnesses, they’ll only be very small ones. Use this app to save yourself a long trek to the medical tent. It gives you advice on what to do on a massive range of medical issues: you could use it if someone in your group gets sun stroke, or a bit of food poisoning from a dodgy burger van. Get the official Red Cross app.

6. TentFinder. Of all the Glastonbury horror stories, people forgetting where their tent is for the entire weekend is one of the most common. TentFinder can help you make sure you never have to tell this story for yourself! It uses GPS technology alongside a compass and a map of the festival site to guide you home after a long day and night. You can even upload a photo of your tent, so if things get so bad you can’t recognise it when it’s front of you, you’ll have a helping hand. Download TentFinder.

7. Festival Ready. This is definitely the most organised app. You can pretty much sort out any practical issues that arise over the weekend using Festival Ready, as it is probably the most packed app: festival essentials all in one place. Use it as another way to find your tent, check the weather forecast, and make lists of what to take with you. You can even use it to turn your phone into a torch for the walk back to the tent at the end of the night. The ‘one stop shop’ of festival apps, Festival Ready can help you have a good time without completely losing track of everything. Find Festival Ready.

8. Online Banking. Following the news that debit cards are now accepted at bars all over Glastonbury, your online banking app might be the most life saving you use all weekend. Set up alerts and alarms that remind you to stop buying drinks for strangers. Also a handy app if you run out of funds and need someone to emergency transfer money to you! Head to your bank’s website to find their app.

9. WaterIn. It might be a bit optimistic to say that you’ll need to drink lots of water because of the hot weather. But even if it’s raining, it’s a good idea to fill up on H2O at a festival; you’ll enjoy yourself a lot more if you’re feeling at least slightly healthy! Log the amount of water you drink throughout the day in WaterIn (you can put things like ‘small bottle’) and a chart will track your progress. And if you’re not drinking enough water, the app will send you a reminder. Get WaterIn.

10. Battery Doctor. Phone service EE have been kind enough to provide free phone charging tents at this year’s Glastonbury, but if you’re using all of these apps, you’re going to want to keep an eye on your battery life at all times. Using an app like Battery Doctor will keep your power in check, shutting down apps and services when you’re not using them to save juice. Download Battery Doctor.

Download these apps and you’ll survive Glastonbury in one piece. We hope you have a great weekend!

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Twitter Update: What’s a Pinned Tweet?

You know how Facebook lets your pin an update to the top of your Page (click the drop down arrow on the update and then select “Pin to Top”)? Well Twitter now lets you pin your Tweets to the top of your timeline. So if you’ve a Tweet that you really want people to see (it must be your own Tweet and you can only have one pinned at a time):

1. Hover over it and select the “More” icon

2. Select “Pin to your profile page”

3. Now the Tweet will be pinned to the top of your profile page!

Are you interested in learning more about using Twitter for Business? Why not come to our London based training course? See here for more information:

Twitter For Business Training Course

This post was by Mathew Aitken at MadeSimpleFind Mathew on Google+

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SEO: 5 super effective tips to improve the CTR of your Organic Listings

There are various ways you can increase the CTR (click-through rate) of your search Increase your organic CTRengine results. Below I have listed 5 of the most important ones that, if you get right, will make the biggest impact.

1. URL – Does your URL give context?

Let’s start with the most important factor – the way your URL looks in the SERPs. You can tweak and improve this to dramatically increase your CTR. With the introduction of rich snippet markup, you can now alter your URL so it provides context and leads people to direct pages.

Increase your organic click through rate

Tip: Use breadcrumb navigation on your pages. A breadcrumb trail is a set of links that can help a user understand and navigate your site’s hierarchy

increase your organic click through rate with breadcrumbs

2. Title Tag – Does it include a keyword?

The title tag is the first thing that people in the SERP (search engine results page), this makes it hugely important. Google displays the first 50-60 characters of a title tag – or as many characters that will fit into a 512 pixel display. It’s best to keep your titles under 55 characters to make sure they are fully presented without being cut off.

Improve your organic click through rateTip: Use keywords in your title tags as search engines will highlight them bold, this leads to a higher CTR.

3. Meta Description Tag – Free advertising space

Meta description tags do not affect your SEO, however they are a great piece of real estate to sell your content and increase that CTR. Keep in mind that your meta tag can be roughly 155 characters. Similar to title tags, if the search term is included in the meta tag it will be highlighted bold.

Increase your organic click through rate

Tip: Don’t just describe your products; sell them. Think carefully how you word your meta description tags. This is a prime opportunity to use the psychology of persuasion to increase your CTR and your conversion! Give people a reason why they should click. Tell them the benefits of choosing you, include a call to action and word it in a way that they can’t resist! Research proves that if people imagine they are holding a product, they are more likely to buy it. That’s a pretty strong reason to spend that bit of extra time writing your tags.

4. Rich Snippets – Give extra information 

Rich Snippets are a great addition to your business presence in the SERPs. You can add HTML markup to your web pages to allow search engines to identify specific elements on that page and display them in search results. You can also include breadcrumbs, product reviews, pricing and Google Authorship (Find out how to get Google Authorship here).

Increase your organic click through rates with rich snippetsGoogleAuthorship

 

 

 

Tip: Use the Google Structured data testing tool to test what markup is present on your pages and see a preview of how it will appear in Google search results.

5. Search Engine Results Page (SERP) – Get the page ranking higher for its keyword  

Matt Cutts’ most common question is ‘how to rank #1 on Google?.’ It seems digital marketers everywhere are obsessed with getting to number one. But is it really worth it? Does it make a difference? The answer is YES. A study by Nielsen shows that web users spend 80% of their time looking at information above the page fold. This means that if your website appears in the top 4 listings on the search results page, this will dramatically increase your CTR and you will see a significant increase in traffic and conversions.

Here’s some CTR stats by Google position:

click through rate by Google position

Tip: Listings for informational search queries will reach above the fold easier than your page listings. Write and optimise relevant blog content.

Well there you have it, 5 tips to make your organic listings awesome!

Learn more about SEO on our monthly training courses, click the link for more information or to book your spot.

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Google+ Update: A new dashboard for businesses on Google.

Yesterday Google announced an update to how people manage their business information on Google; ‘Google My Business.’

Google my Business

This new dashboard by Google allows businesses (whether they are a brand or local business) to easily manage their reviews, Google Analytics, YouTube account, local business information and their Google+ page all from one place.

What’s included in your dashboard?
If you are a ‘brand’ on Google, your dashboard will look like this:

Dashboard on Google My Business

 

This allows you to quickly share on your Google+ Page, see your Google+ Page insights for the past 30 days, view your YouTube insights for the past 30 days, have the option to pull in your Google Analytics information, and start a Google Hangout.

If you are a ‘local’ business on Google you will see an extended dashboard with the options to edit your business opening hours, add photos and manage your business reviews and AdWords.

Local

If your business is not already ‘On Google’
If you have just started your business (hopefully with Companies Made Simple) you can go to www.google.co.uk/MyBusiness to ‘Get on Google’

Get on Google

If you are a ‘local business’, Google will then give you an option to to see if your business is already on Google Maps by searching for your business name.

Get your local business on Google

If you don’t have a walk in store front or business and want to register as a ‘brand’ Google will ask you to choose your business type.

get your business on Google

Choose your business type on GoogleMobile Phone App
Google have also create an app to help you manage your dashboard whilst on the go – available now on Android, and coming soon on IOS.

Do you want to improve your business’s online presence? Book on to our Google+ course and make sure you are getting the most out of the platform.

Check out Google’s (very Amercian) video introducing ‘Google My Business’

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Facebook Pages now tells you who posted the update

Who made that Facebook update?

Are you part of a team that takes care of a Facebook Page? Have you ever seen an update and wondered who on your team was responsible for such a typo-filled load of rubbish thought-provoking and insightful post? Yes? Facebook obviously had you in mind when they rolled out their ‘Posted by’ update. Now, when a member of the team posts a status update or uploads a photo, Facebook will tell you and other managers – not fans – who is responsible. Like this (great post btw way Sarah :D ): Will this feature be useful to you? Let us know with a comment. Would you like more Facebook for Business tips? Why not come to our Facebook for Business training course? This post was by Mathew Aitken at MadeSimpleFind Mathew on Google+

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