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User Experience is a crucial consideration for any web developer or designer; the only way to ensure that you’re delivering a successful website is to ensure that the end-user or customer will feel comfortable using it. 

A strong user experience increases your client’s chances of successful audience engagement and conversions.

What you might not realize, however, is that the strategies you use to enhance UX as a web developer or designer can also influence how the search engines respond to a website. 

Though many designers assume that SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the work of a copywriter or content producer, there are design elements to consider too. 

After all, the definition of optimization is “the action of making the best version of a resource.”

So, how are UX and SEO connected?

Adding UX to a Successful SEO Strategy

SEO used to be easy. To stand out on the search results, you just needed to stuff a page full of as many keywords and phrases as possible. Now, it’s a little more complicated. 

Leaders in search engine development, like Google and Bing, know that they need to offer their customers excellent experiences to keep them. In this new experience-focused landscape, SEO and UX share common goals. 

Search engines don’t just want to provide customers with any answers to their questions. Instead, Google and its competitors are using everything from artificial intelligence to machine learning algorithms to ensure that search results are accurate, relevant, and engaging. 

In the same way, user experience is about providing users with easy access to the information and resources they want. 

Now that SEO is a multi-disciplined approach, UX is just one of the essential tools that makes it possible for developers to optimize their websites properly. 

Where UX Developers Influence SEO 

There are plenty of connections between UX and site indexability

We all know that since 2018, site speed has become a crucial ranking factor for companies in search of better search results. As a developer, it’s up to you to ensure that there aren’t too many elements weighing a website down that would prevent it from delivering fast results. 

Bounce rate is another critical factor in search engine ranking algorithms. When customers click on a website, Google wants to see that they get the answers they want. If your navigation is difficult to understand, or the correct information isn’t easy to see on a page, end-users will just hit the back button. 

Let’s take a closer look at how developers can influence SEO with their UX strategies. 

1. Site Navigation and Ease of Use

It’s no secret that today’s digital consumers crave easy-to-use sites.

A complex website with pages ranking for different terms might seem like an excellent idea for SEO. However, from a UX perspective, the easier it is to navigate your website, the more your end-users will benefit. 

According to a study from Ahrefs, well-optimized pages that rank for several keywords can be more beneficial than dozens of pages ranking for similar terms. At the same time, if the search engines have difficulty crawling all your pages due to a poor site navigation strategy, then some pages won’t get indexed. 

So, how do you improve navigation and SEO at once? Follow the proper structure for your site first, categories and subcategories on the retail page help customers find exactly what they need. A solid internal linking structure allows the crawlers to examine your website and index each essential page individually.

Keep navigation simple when designing a website for both UX and SEO potential. 

2. User-Friendly Page Layouts

There are countless cases where poor layout design and formatting disrupts SEO potential. For example, cluttering a page with too much information makes it tougher to read and index. At the same time, if your pages aren’t attractive and easy to navigate, customers are more likely to hit the back button. 

If customers come to a website and immediately leave it again, this tells the search engines that they’re not finding what they need on those pages. That means Google will bump you to a lower position on the SERPs. 

So, how do you make your layouts more UX and SEO-friendly?

  • Get your category pages right: Say you’re creating a blog page for your client. They want to list all of their blogs on one main page while linking to separate locations for each article. A design that puts a large chunk of content from each blog on the main page can be problematic for UX and SEO. It means your customers have to scroll further to find what they need. At the same time, the search engines never know which words to rank that main page for. On the other hand, listing blogs on smaller cards, as Fabrik does in this example, makes sorting through content easier. 
  • Leverage headers and tags: Your customers and the search engines habitually “scan” your pages. When trying to improve UX and SEO simultaneously, you must ensure that it’s easy to find crucial information quickly. Header 1 or H1 tags can help by showing your audience your website’s critical sections. Title tags also give search engines more information on the term you want to rank for. Organizing your content into a structure that draws the eye down the page also means your customers are more likely to stay on your website for longer. That shows the search engines that you have quality, relevant content. 
  • Make the most of images and videos: Visual media isn’t just an excellent way to engage your audience. With videos and pictures, you can convey more vital information in a quick and convenient format. This leads to greater satisfaction from your audience from a UX perspective. However, visual content is also great for SEO. You can optimize every image with alt text and meta descriptions. That means you have a higher chance of ranking both in the main search results and the image searches on Google. 

3. Using Search Data to Inform Site Architecture

Today, SEO is less about building hundreds of landing pages for individual queries. Now, it’s more important to take a simple, de-cluttered approach with your website. SEO can determine what kind of architecture you need to create for a successful website. 

For instance, say you wanted to rank for eCommerce SEO. There are tons of related words that connect to that primary search term. Rather than making dozens of different pages that try to rank for distinct phrases, you can cover a lot of other ideas at once with a larger, more detailed piece of content. 

If a topic is too big to cover everything on a single page, then you might decide to create something called “pillar” content out of your main terms. This involves using one main page where you discuss all of the topics you will cover. Then, you design several smaller sub-pages that link back to that central pillar. 

Once again, this helps the search engines to navigate your website and index your pages while assisting the customers in finding the correct information. At the same time, you combine more pages on a website and remove anything that might be detracting from your site’s authority or not offering enough value. 

4. Improving Website SERP Listings

It’s easy to forget as a developer that a customer’s first experience with a website won’t always happen on that site’s homepage. Usually, when your customers are looking for solutions to a problem, they’ll find your website on the search engine results instead. 

This means that you need to ensure that you make the right impression here:

There are a few ways that developers can ensure the search engine listings they create for their clients are up to scratch. For instance, a reasonable title tag for each page that includes appropriate keywords is excellent for SEO and UX. A title tag lets your customers know they’re in the right place and helps them find the information they need. 

Remember, around eight out of ten users on search engines say that they’ll click a title if it’s compelling. 

Another component you have control over as a developer or designer is the “rich snippet.” Rich snippets are the informative chunks of content that Google adds to a search listing to help it stand out. You can use rich snippet plugins on a website to tell Google what kind of extra information you want to include on a page. 

For instance, you might want a company’s ratings to show up on your search results, so customers can see how trustworthy they are:

5. Local Business Rankings

When you’re creating a website for a company, it’s easy to forget about local rankings. We see the digital world as a way of reaching countless people worldwide. Local orders are easier to overlook when you have a global scope to work with. 

However, as a developer, you can boost a company’s chances of attracting the right local audience and boosting its credibility. For instance, you can start by ensuring that the correct directory information appears on your client’s website and social media profiles.

Another option is to create dedicated location pages for each area the company serves. This will make it easier for clients to find the contact details they need for their specific location. 

At the same time, pages that have been carefully optimized to rank for specific locations will earn more attention, specifically from search engines. The more of the search engine landscape your client can cover, the more chances they have to attract new customers and leads. 

Combing SEO and UX

In a world where experience is crucial for every business, it’s no wonder that UX and SEO are blending more closely together. There are a lot of areas where SEO and UX work in harmony together if you know where to find them. Improving your client’s SEO ranking with UX doesn’t just mean ensuring that their pages load quickly anymore. 

Simple strategies, like making sure a call-to-action button is clickable on a mobile page, can simultaneously boost a website’s UX potential and SEO performance. At the same time, adding images and alt text to a website provides search engines with more information while adding context to your content. 

The key to success is understanding how SEO and UX work together. If you look at SEO and UX as part of the same comprehensive strategy to give end-users a better online experience, achieving the right design goals is much easier. 

Of course, just like any strategy, it’s also worth making sure that you take the time to track the results of your UX and SEO campaigns. Examine which systems help you, and examine customers from an SEO perspective with design and development strategies.

 

Features image by gstudioimagen on Freepik

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Cyber threats have become more sophisticated. Hence, it is a good idea to utilize the expertise of public cloud providers to better manage assets against security threats. Cloud security is a collection of proactive measures to protect your cloud assets from internal and external threats. In this Refcard, we will walk through common cloud security challenges, continuous security for cloud infrastructure, and advanced strategies for securing cloud workloads.
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Personalized marketing is when you attune your marketing efforts based on customer data. This data can be anything from the first and last name to purchase intent, concerns, and history.

Personalized marketing has revolutionized the way businesses market their product and service to their audience. It brings value to people’s lives, spiking the sales graph for brands and businesses. So it’s a win-win situation for both the company and the consumer.

Even big companies do this for their campaigns. They do so because it gives them great results and ROI for their marketing initiatives. If these multinational businesses do this, it’s a good idea to incorporate this strategy and learn from a top resource on digital marketing.

This article aims to explain every nook and cranny of personalized marketing. By the end of this 5-minute read, you will know the impact of personalized marketing on our lives. And how you can integrate this into your marketing strategy to benefit your business.

What Is Personalized Marketing?

Have you ever encountered a business that knows what you’re going through? Or did you see an ad online that you closely relate to? Chances are, you were one of the target markets of those marketing materials. And if you could associate yourself with the ad, their marketing strategy worked.

That is what personalized marketing does to your audience, market, or particular demographic. This style of advertising leverages personalization in your marketing materials. The details of your marketing content are tailored to a specific audience and address the issues or real-time problems of a particular segment in your market.

Personalized marketing has become popular because more people demand it from businesses. Once the people have experienced what it felt like, they want to feel more of it.

To objectively see the demand for personalization, here are some statistics to back it up.

Accenture reported that 91% of consumers are likelier to shop with businesses that offer them relevant content. This shows that the right product recommendations can increase the chances of shopping with you.

Salesforce mentioned that 66% of consumers expect companies to understand their individual needs. This statement proves that a generalized way of marketing isn’t as effective as before. The consumer mindset has already developed, and they demand more personalization from businesses.

A striking piece of data from Statista showed that 90% of consumers in the US find the idea of personalization appealing. If that figure is accurate, almost all businesses should start incorporating this into their strategies. There’s no reason for them not to try this out.

Given the high positive demand for personalized marketing, it’s no secret why more and more businesses are doing this. However, not every company out there is doing this right. A wrong way of doing this can bring a loss of clients and a negative ROI.

To help you go on the right track of using personalization in your marketing, read up on the next section of this article.

Know These 6 Tips To Correctly Do Personalized Marketing

You’d agree that knowing your customer’s first and last name is essential. But with the dynamically changing strategies, personalized marketing is going beyond that. It’s actually about understanding what your targeted consumers need, merging with a way to convey the message that your business is the solution.

To help you achieve this, take note of the things below:

1. Leverage Your Customer Data

The foundation of personalized marketing is laid on customer data. The best marketing professionals and strategists emphasize gathering relevant data if you want to scale. Excellent digital marketing courses will teach you that customer data will help you build a solid foundation for your content and campaigns.

Consumer behavior has always been the most important detail for target marketing. With every click, it has become easier to gather data about individual customers, their interests, hobbies, purchase history, buying behavior, and more.

You’ll be able to get this information if you’ve practiced data management and collecting customer data throughout the years of your operation. However, it’s not too late to begin if you haven’t started with this yet. There is a lot of marketing automation software that aids marketing teams in doing this. For example, many businesses use lead scoring software to gain insight into their clients’ needs and categorize them appropriately.

For your personalization efforts, you can use questionnaires, surveys, and feedback forms to capture personal data on the internet. A customer will happily fill out a survey form if a reward in return entices him. This reward can be in any form– a voucher, a first buy discount, free shipping, or more.

This initiative will help you get more data in a shorter time frame.

2. Understand Your Customer’s Needs

Hoarding data will be a complete waste of marketing efforts, capital, and efficiency if you do not extract consumer behavior from it. When you have access to a rich set of data, you have the privilege to understand your customers’ trending needs deeply. After gaining insights from the data, create a marketing strategy based on those findings to target your audience.

Doing this doesn’t just apply to B2C; it also works for B2B companies, which is why the demand for custom software development, tailored services, personalized packages, and B2B data providers have been on the rise in these recent years.

It is a two-way road. While you are on the lookout for your target market, at the same time, the customers expect businesses to know what they need. The market you’re currently serving expects you to know what products or services are fit for them.

So this is where it gets crucial: you have to dig deeper into your niche and find the specs of your audience’s needs. Having a general idea about the needs of your target audience and personalized marketing usually don’t go harmoniously.

Planning a better-personalized marketing strategy will not be a piece of cake but will be much more rewarding for every aspect of your business. May it be sales, return on investments, customer relationships, or personalized marketing campaigns.

3. Personalize Every Stage Of The Customer Journey

The first rule of business is convincing the customer that you are their best friend. Now that you know what they want, you pledge to provide them with whatever best you can. Limiting personalization to marketing is not the solution. You have to be vigilant in meeting these individual requirements at every stage. And remember that consistency is the name of the game. That is how you bring your business into the running.

You can integrate CRM automation, email marketing tools and deploy other content marketing strategies to help make this process a lot simpler. Personalized live chat and chatbots, such as those offered by ThriveDesk, allow businesses to personalize their offerings and build their brand reputation.

As a customer, my requirement would be reading content, browsing, and experiencing products that would hit home. A personalized experience is what every consumer demands. And this is what makes them want to go back and do business with you again.

By creating helpful and relevant content, recommending the right products to them, and giving out convenient payment options, you are setting your business apart from the rest. Doing this allows you to have personalized every touchpoint that your customers do with your business.

4. Present In An Engaging Way

Consider customer engagement as absolutely necessary. Having the best data set and knowing what your customers want is not enough. In the competitive space of business and marketing, everyone is trying to get the attention of one another. And this is what you are supposed to do. This helps in building consumer-brand relations.

When a consumer engages, meaningful things happen. Engaging content pushes the consumer through the funnel and hence promotes conversions. Your content should be creative and eye-catching.

Engaging content blended with personalization boosts the brand experience. Increased loyalty, trust-building, and improved customer experience enhance the conversion and sales speed.

A great way to use personalization in an engaging manner that most businesses overlook would be through exit-intent popups.

5. Be Where Your Customers Are

This is an element that some businesses miss out on. They have created excellent social media marketing content but only distributed it on the wrong channel. For personalized marketing to be effective, it needs to be seen by people.

Are you questioning your marketing techniques because all you see is stagnancy? You have set up an engaging online store on Shopify or Wix, collected all the relevant data, your content is engaging enough, and your marketing strategy is top-notch. But you are still unable to reach your clientele.

You start wondering what you are missing out on. Your content and your strategies will not be prolific if you are on the wrong channel. Remember: the message of your content has to reach the right people for it to be effective.

Should you be on social media? If so, which one? Do you get more traction with email campaigns? Or do you have more engagements on forums?

Find out where your market is, then spend your focus there. Now the next step is how to know where they spend most of their time?

This is where we go back in the loop. And hence we again emphasize that data collection is the foundation of any great marketing strategy.

6. Improve Marketing Content

Don’t rest on your laurels when you’ve gotten everything down to a tee and have attained your desired marketing analytics behind your personalized marketing content. Always think of ways how you can improve.

Evolving at every step will keep you in the running. Don’t be misguided into thinking that your work is done if you feel like you have reached the pinnacle. Keep looking for ways to get better. Set bigger goals and status for your business.

Always go back to the drawing board and brainstorm with your team on how you can change and strive with the dynamically changing world and mindsets. In the end, all you want is to build better relationships with your customers, new and existing.

For enhanced productivity, your marketing team should always look for new strategies. This is how fresh and great marketing ideas are made.

See How You Can Benefit From Personalized Marketing

Irrelevant information can waste energy and time for both customers and the business. Personalized marketing hits the bull’s eye 99% of the time. It brings immeasurable value to the company as well as the customer.

Here are some of the top benefits of personalized marketing:

1. Better Engagement

The first target personalized marketing aims at is grabbing an individual’s attention. And this results in better engagement eventually. If you are presenting your customer with something that wows them, needless to say, it will grab their attention.

This will help bridge the gap between your customer and your brand. Identifying customers’ needs and then giving them what they want will help improve customer interaction with your brand.

It can even be enough for them to follow your call to action. The next thing you know, they will be checking your website, signing up for a list, or even purchasing a product right then and there.

2. Higher Conversions

Are you there for your customer at the right time and place? One-on-one marketing provides easy solutions to customers because you hit them with just what they are looking for at the right time.

When potential customers realize that you understand what they’re going through and provide the solution, most won’t hesitate to try your business out.

Personalization isn’t just focused on content. It can also be integrated into your processes. This results in aiding the increase of higher conversion rates.

3. Improved Customer Experience

Offering personalization will significantly improve the user experience. Once you provide the products, services, and content that meet their needs, their opinion of your business automatically improves.

Considering the statistics about personalized experiences, it is evident that consumers demand personalization strategies from companies. And if you offer such an experience, you increase the chance of making them do more business with you. Personalization helps businesses in reducing cart abandonment rates, better customer journey, increased customer satisfaction, and many more.

4. Customer Retention

Retaining persisting customers is equally important to your business as bringing new ones. Most businesses face low customer retention. It’s also a factor that some companies overlook. You must understand that it’s not all about converting prospects into paying customers. Your focus should also be on retaining those customers to make them loyal advocates of your brand.

One of the major benefits of consistent personalization is an improved customer retention rate. Consumers tend to stay with a business that understands their needs and provides solutions to their problems.

Once you can transfer a customer to a loyal advocate, you can also receive a ton of benefits. These are people that are going to defend your brand from critics. These are the same people who will give you free marketing via word of mouth and positive reviews.

5. Better Customer Relationships

Personalized experience leads to customer retention, eventually building better relationships with your nurtured customers. These entities are connected in a loop.

Customer relationships are an aspect of business that significantly helps with scalability and higher revenue. So connecting with your customers and building a relationship with them is as important as the product you are selling. This is why strengthening customer relationships should be a top priority for businesses.

Personalization makes you an expert on your target market trends. You get to know your audience deeper, which helps you build a foundation for creating a great customer relationship. And this requires marketing and customer experience teams to work together in a symphony.

For this, you can use team collaboration software which aids in the optimization of content and your approach toward the market. You’ll have a better strategy in getting their attention, providing what they want, and recommending things they’ll be interested in.

All of these things help in building customer rapport. When a customer feels that you treat them as more than just a paying customer, their customer loyalty goes to your business.

Best Examples Personalization Marketing

To inspire you to integrate this marketing strategy into your operations, below are different personalization marketing campaigns done exceptionally by various businesses. Grab inspiration, ideas, and motivation from these examples.

1. Coca-Cola

We all know the most basic form of personalization is addressing your customers’ names, but Coca-Cola took this simple idea into a massive global campaign. Their “Share a Coke” campaign started in 2011, wherein they printed different popular names on their Coke bottles and cans.

It seemed like a regular campaign at first, but it started getting traction as more customers wanted to get the name of their family, friends, and themselves. Coca-Cola said the campaign’s purpose was “to create a more personal relationship with consumers and inspire shared moments of happiness.”

The soft drinks giant used personalization and tied such a strategy with its mission: to bring memories and happiness to its consumers. You, too, can do the same – combine your mission and personalization strategy to create a unique campaign.

2. Spotify

Spotify leverages user data in its marketing strategy. They have several campaigns that make users want to use their application more often because it gives out a more tailored experience.

Other than their year-end campaign( #spotifywrapped), where they show the most played songs and podcasts their users listen to (which was a viral hit), they now also have an #OnlyYou campaign that shows your unique listening taste partnered with a musical astrology reading.

3. Nike

Nike has consistently been recognized for authentic, personalized, and heartfelt ad campaigns. This personalization always makes them capture an audience who can relate and those who start connecting to the brand. So Nike isn’t new to personalization. Their aim is robust community engagement.

Their highly inspirational campaigns with real-life heroes induce inspiration in their audience. Nike is great at converting people because of its excellent storytelling ability while adding personalization to the mix.

Nike’s just launched a new app that offers personalized content and rewards for committed fans. They tackle challenges and issues head-on, but they always make their marketing messages relatable to their audience. That is why they “just do it.”

Conclusion

Personalized marketing is the secret sauce to thriving businesses in the world today. However, incorporating this marketing strategy and finding success is not as simple as you might think. You will face challenges, but with enough perseverance and brainstorming, you can surpass them and successfully create a great campaign.

Remember, this marketing approach can be a hit or a miss. The first step to making it a success is relevant data collection followed by judicious implementation. This isn’t an overnight activity that you can do. It requires months of diligence in the right direction with the proper guidance. And you can gain valuable insights into this guidance via the content marketing strategies outlined in this article. But remember, once you start rolling, there is no looking back.

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Starting your own business is a process with a fair share of challenges. Even in the web design world, where you can potentially minimize costs by working from home and collaborating with freelance contractors, many expenses exist. 

To run a successful web design business, you need enough money to invest in everything from skilled colleagues to resources (like fonts and themes), software subscriptions, and technology tools. Finding a way to fund your company can be the most complicated part of ensuring its success.

For most new companies, the easiest option to generate opportunities is “bootstrapping.” Learning how to bootstrap a web design business means knowing how to bring your business to life with virtually no starting capital. 

Here’s how to get started.

What is Bootstrapping? 

Successful bootstrappers take an idea, such as creating a web design company and create a fantastic company without the backing of investors. It takes significant dedication, commitment, and single-mindedness to accomplish your goals, but some of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs, like Steve Jobs and Sam Walton, got their start this way. 

The term “bootstrapping” comes from the phrase “to pull yourself up by the bootstraps,” which indicates overcoming challenges on your own without any external support. 

The pros and cons of bootstrapping include:

Pros:

  • Full control: Bootstrapping allows entrepreneurs to retain full ownership over their business. Alternatively, engaging with investors means allowing other professionals to own a portion of your company or make a share of the decisions. 
  • Innovation: Business owners in a bootstrapping model are forced to invest in agile and innovative business models. You must develop processes to produce immediate, lasting cash flow from day one. 
  • Accomplishment: Building something from the ground up creates a powerful sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. 
  • Ownership: You won’t have to sell any equity in your business to other investors, which means you can benefit fully from the company as it grows.

Cons:

  • Risks: Self-funded businesses generally run out of funds faster and struggle to scale as quickly as other companies, limiting the brand’s ability to reach its potential.
  • Limited support: Traditional financing methods (like working with investors) also provide networking opportunities and support from specialists who want to see your company succeed. 
  • Pressure: Bootstrapping businesses need to be meticulous about everything from keeping books to making the right decisions for brand growth. 
  • Hard work: With limited resources, connections, and options, bootstrapping entrepreneurs need to work harder than most and take on more roles.

How to Bootstrap Your Web Design Business: Step by Step

Bootstrapping a web design business can be complicated, but it works for many companies if you follow the right strategy. The good news is web design companies generally don’t require as much initial capital as some other types of companies, like standard retail brands or companies with a need for brick and mortar offices.

However, there are still steps you’ll need to follow to ensure success.

Step 1: Source Some Initial Funds

While you might not work with investors when bootstrapping your web design business, you’ll still need some essential initial funds. To run a web design business, you won’t necessarily need a massive initial investment, but you will need something. 

To determine how much capital you need to raise from your income, savings, a line of credit, or other common bootstrapping sources, think about:

  • Where you’re going to work: The upfront costs of operating your own web design business will be a lot lower if you choose to work from home and with remote specialists. The less you have to pay for office space, the better.
  • Business fees: You may need to pay fees for registering your business name, hosting your own website for advertising, and dealing with any registration costs.
  • Equipment and software: Think about what you will use daily for web design. Subscription-based services like Adobe Creative Cloud can cost quite a bit to access. You’ll also need a good computer, and perhaps a tablet for sketching.

Step 2: Find a USP 

The easiest way to ensure a bootstrapped web design business is a success is to ensure you are offering specific clients something they genuinely need. In a service-based landscape like web design, you need to know what your customers want and offer something they can’t get elsewhere.

For instance, can you differentiate yourself from other web design companies by helping with modern trends like 360-degree video and XR-ready design? Can you build apps for companies from scratch and provide ongoing maintenance for the websites you make?

An excellent way to find your USP is to examine your competitors. Find out what other companies in your area are offering their customers, and listen to consumers in your industry when they talk about what they need from a website designer. 

Step 3: Choose a Cash Flow Optimized Model 

Since you’re relying only on your cash and the money you make from your web design business to fuel its growth, choosing a model optimized for consistent cash flow is essential. Bootstrapping a business often means you place most of the profit you gain from your company back into the development of the brand. 

With this in mind, consider how you’ll offer services and charge your customers. Are you going to ask for a portion of the fees up-front before starting a web design project? Can you provide your customers with subscription models to improve your revenue consistently?

For instance, you could provide help with ongoing maintenance, development, and support rather than just offering to build websites for companies. Another way to make additional income is with professional services, like consulting. 

Make sure there’s a market for the services you’ll offer before launching your business by examining the surrounding environments and services your competitors provide.

Step 4: Keep Costs Low and Profits High

Keeping costs low will be essential to ensuring your success when bootstrapping a business. Fortunately for web designers, it’s relatively easy to cut down on fees. For instance, WordPress is free to use for your development projects, making it an excellent choice for many web design strategies. 

You can also look into common free and cheap alternatives to web design tools online, like GIMP. Shop around for the things you will be paying ongoing fees with. For instance, it’s best to check out multiple vendors when looking for web hosting and marketing support. 

While keeping your costs low, it’s also essential to accelerate profits as much as possible. You can look for ways to boost customer retention by building stronger relationships with your clients and offering them deals on long-term subscriptions. 

If you have time outside of your web design business, you can also try taking on some side hustles. Options include:

  • Selling web design assets on sites like ThemeForest
  • Offering your services on a freelance basis with sites like Dribbble and Toptal
  • Designing and selling NFTs for the metaverse
  • Teaching web design or selling webinars

Step 5: Grow Cautiously

Finally, while the goal of successfully bootstrapping your web design business will be to grow as rapidly and consistently as possible, it’s important to be cautious. For instance, you’ll need to be able to afford the fees of every new designer you bring onto your team, so consider looking for freelancers and contractors rather than permanent hires.

Use organic channels for marketing your services, like blogging and content marketing which can help improve your SEO standing and attract attention among clients. Plus, encourage your customers to recommend your services to other brands. 

As new clients approach your business, ensure you only take on as many customers as you can reasonably handle. Compromising on quality will damage your relationships with customers and harm your reputation. 

Good Luck Bootstrapping Your Business

When you’re bootstrapping a business, you get the benefit of being able to eliminate any outside influences from your growth. You’re free to focus on building relationships with companies of your choice, and you get to make decisions about your growth. However, there are downsides, too, like significant stress and limited financial opportunities.

While bootstrapping your business is tough, if you manage to complete the process successfully, the results can be fantastic. 

 

Featured image via Unsplash.

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WordPress has made it easy for everyone to launch a blog, but even though launching a blog isn’t a difficult task any longer, driving traffic to your blog certainly is!

In this article, I’ll share some tried and tested strategies that have worked well for my clients’ blogs. You do not have to be an expert or a marketing guru to get traffic to your WordPress website. Follow the helpful tips I share in this article and watch the visitors start pouring in.

Tip 1: Use Powerful Headlines

The first thing related to your blog that a user reads in the search engine results is your article headlines. Of course, nobody wants to click on a boring article title. But a powerful headline stands out from the rest and gets you more clicks. 

In most themes, your article headlines are translated into meta titles for the pages. Meta titles indicate the topic of your articles to Google and other search engines. 

Tip 2: Build an Email List

Consider offering your visitors a newsletter signup form through which they can subscribe and get notified about new posts on your blog. You can offer them an incentive for free to persuade them to subscribe to your blog. It can be anything from an e-book, membership, useful templates, or an e-course. 

Building an email list gives access to the inboxes of your visitors. You can share your blog content with this prospective audience every time you post a new article. This will help you get consistent traffic to your WordPress blog.

Tip 3: Use Free Giveaways and Contests

Free giveaways work as an incentive for your WordPress blog visitors. To offer an entry to your blog’s free giveaway, you can ask your visitors for an email subscription, comment on your blog posts, share it on their social media channels, and ask for other such things. 

The trick is to think about the actions of your visitors that will increase traffic to your blog and provide them with one or multiple giveaway entries for such actions. 

Tip 4: Optimize For Keywords

All successful bloggers optimize their content for keywords. You need to perform proper keyword research to find sentences and words that your target audience is typing in Google and other top search engines. 

Instead of guessing the keywords for your articles, consider using some helpful tools like SEMrush’s Keyword Magic Tool and Google Ads Keyword Planner. This way, you can find the terms people are genuinely interested in and the keywords that do not have too much competition.

You must ensure to choose the keywords that have some excellent traffic volume but, at the same time, have less competition. Such keywords will help in the better ranking of each of your articles.

Tip 5: Optimize WordPress Site Speed

It has been proven that loading time is a ranking factor for SEO, as Google tends to assume that fast sites are high-quality sites.

Signing up for a hosting provider specializing in WordPress guarantees you get the best optimization features for your WordPress site. However, that alone is not enough because you need a hosting provider that can also handle a high volume of visitors.

Optimizing your WordPress website will help in the faster loading of your blog pages. Images are generally the biggest culprit in slowing down your website. So you must first optimize them through an image optimization plugin like Smush, Imagify, or Optimus. 

Enabling caching on your WordPress blog will considerably improve its speed. You can store your website data locally with caching, thereby reducing your server load to a large extent. Your website will, therefore, load faster on your visitors’ end, especially when they are repeat visitors.

Tip 6: Take Advantage of Social Media

Try building your presence on some of the top platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Post multiple times a day on these websites and share your blog articles.

You must also include social sharing buttons with your blog posts to make sharing easier for your audience. It will allow your blog visitors to share your post on different social platforms. This dramatically increases the chances of your blog post going viral.

Tip 7: Internal Linking Strategy

The only key here is to link articles that are closely related to each other. Your visitors might be interested in such related content and read more of your blog posts, thereby increasing your page views. It also increases the chances of visitors sharing your blog content since they find it valuable.

Tip 8: Be a Guest Blogger

Guest blogging involves creating content for other websites for mutual benefits. It helps you establish your authority in the blogging world while attracting more visitors to your WordPress website. 

Becoming a guest blogger allows you to spread the word about your blog to a new set of audiences and bring in organic traffic. It expands your work portfolio and helps build or enhance your online reputation.

Tip 9: Pay for Traffic

Consider using Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Microsoft advertising, and other top advertising platforms when paying to bring traffic to your blog. Be aware of your blog audience and use the most suitable criteria to target it. 

I’d recommend setting a weekly budget for paid ads and tracking the ad performance at the end of the week.

If you are satisfied with the traffic results, use the same criteria for the next week. On the other hand, if the ad performance is not as per your expectations, try different criteria to reach your target audience.

Conclusion

Getting traffic to your WordPress blog is an incentive for all the hard work that you do in creating content and managing your website. It builds a name for your blog and improves its search engine ranking. All this leads to better user engagement and revenue.

 

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The term “web design” refers to the process of planning, organizing, and editing content online. On the surface, it seems like a simple enough concept. However, the reality is what we consider “web design” can change over time, influenced by our perception of the “web.” 

In 2022, a professional web designer might create custom websites from scratch, but they may also be responsible for: 

  • UX Design: Creating elements focused on user experience
  • App design: Building digital components of a website or online experience.
  • Theme design: Creating visual tools for supplementing web design. 

Web design isn’t just about making a site look attractive anymore. The definition goes beyond the aesthetic to include a complete consideration of the functionality, performance, and abilities of countless assets we engage within the digital world.

What is Web Design? The Definition Today

Web design is the practice responsible for creating a website’s overall look and feel or web asset (such as web and mobile apps). It involves the process of planning and building elements of your project, from structure and layout choices to graphics and presentation. 

Web design has various components that work together to create the final “experience” of a website, including graphic design, interface design, user experience design, search engine optimization, content creation, etc. These elements determine how a web asset looks, feels and performs on various devices. 

Though the definition of web design in 2022 has evolved, it’s still different from web development, which refers to the actual coding which makes a website work. When you’re building a website, you’ll need web design and web development. 

Elements of Web Design in 2022 

When designing a website, modern designers need to consider two overlapping concepts: the overall appearance of the website and its functionality. The proper connection between these elements will maximize the site’s overall performance and usability, and make a design more memorable (for all of the right reasons). 

Let’s break down the elements of web design into its visual and functional components.

Visual Elements of Web Design

Visual elements of web design influence how a design looks. The various visual components of a design should still follow the basic principles of graphic design. In other words, designers should be thinking about contrast, balance, unity, and alignment simultaneously. The visual elements of web design include: 

  • Written copy and fonts: A website’s appearance and the text on the site often go hand in hand. Designers need to work together with content writers to ensure written copy makes sense structurally and uses the correct fonts for legibility. 
  • Colors: Colors for web design are usually chosen based on factors like color psychology, which demonstrates a color’s ability to affect how someone feels, and branding. Most brands have specific colors they use consistently throughout their visual assets; this helps create a sense of cohesion and unity in designs.
  • Layout and spacing: Layout and spacing influence how content is arranged in an app, website, or another visual asset. The right layout helps to create a visual hierarchy, guiding a viewer through a page and drawing their attention to the correct information in order. Spacing helps to separate components on a page and create legibility. 
  • Images, icons, and shapes: Images, icons, and shapes help convey significant amounts of information. The right ideas and icons can strengthen a brand message, direct a customer’s attention using a web app, and bring context to a design. 
  • Videos and animations: Videos and animations are becoming increasingly common in today’s web design strategies. Videos can include 360-degree videos, which help immerse someone in a space, video streams, and short content clips.

Functional Elements of Web Design

Functional elements in web design are the practical components designers need to consider to ensure websites and assets work as they’re supposed to. A website, app, or any other web asset needs to function correctly to be accessible to users.

Functional elements of web design may include:

  • Navigation: The navigation elements of a website or app are among the main components determining whether a site is functioning properly and ensuring a good user experience. Audiences need to be able to move around the app or website quickly. 
  • User interactions: Your site visitors may have multiple ways of communicating with your web app or website, depending on their device. You’ll need to make sure people can scroll and swipe on smartphones and tablets and click on desktops. If your website has VR or AR elements, you’ll also need to consider these immersive components in your design.
  • Speed and performance: While web development elements can also influence a web design’s speed or performance, it’s also essential for a designer to show elements of the composition don’t weigh down the functionality. Designs need to load quickly and correspond with the demands of browsers on various devices.
  • Structure: A website’s structure plays a critical role in user experience and SEO requirements. Users need to easily navigate through a website without encountering any issues like getting lost or ending up on broken pages.
  • Compatibility: A good design should look perfect on all devices, from a wide range of browsers to the various devices users might leverage today. 

What Does Good Web Design Look Like in 2022?

More than ever, achieving high-quality web design is crucial to success in any industry or landscape. More than half of the world’s population is active online. If you’re not appealing to this audience correctly, you’re missing out on endless opportunities.

Notably, while elements of good web design can be subjective, such as which themes or colors someone might prefer for their website, the underlying foundations of strong web design are the same for everyone in 2022.  

Good web design is any design that looks good, performs as it should, and delivers the best possible experience to your target audience. Effective web design should include components like:

  • Effective use of white space for organization and structure.
  • Clearly presented choices and navigation options for the user.
  • Clear calls to action to drive user activities from one page to another.
  • Limited distractions and a straightforward user journey. 
  • No clutter or unnecessary components irrelevant to the needs of the user. 
  • Responsive, flexible design accessible on any browser or device.
  • High-quality content and images are designed to hook a reader’s attention.
  • Appropriately sized fonts and legible typography.
  • A good balance between images and text on a page. 

Other elements like eye-catching imagery and professional photography can help your web design stand out. Using the right building blocks, like a strong color palette and the right shapes or icons in your design is helpful. 

Of course, there is some scope for variation in good web design. A web designer in 2022 needs to be able to adapt their use of the various essential elements of design to suit a specific target audience or the unique identity of a brand.

What Doesn’t Work for Web Design in 2022?

Just as web design elements seem to appear consistently in all excellent examples, there are also parts of web design we’ve left behind over the years. Simpler, more straightforward designs have replaced cluttered spaces, flashing images, and endless animations. 

The focus in 2022 is on creating an experience that’s simple, engaging, and intuitive, capable of speaking to the right audience without confusion or being visually overwhelming. In most cases, some of the top components to avoid include:

  • Clunky performance: Non-responsive website design, slow pages, and other examples of clunky functionality are a no-go in 2022. Websites need to be quick and responsive.
  • Distracting content: Flashing images, animations, and complex backgrounds are a thing of the past for a good reason. Websites today need to be clean, simple, and clear. Any elements which don’t add to the value of the design should be removed.
  • Generic content: Filler text, irrelevant stock photos, unclear buttons, and links can be removed from today’s website designs. A web design should be specific to the audience’s needs and the brand’s identity. Generic components don’t work.

Creating Web Designs in 2022

Today, the underlying definition of web design has a lot of similarities to the definition we’ve known for several years already. Creating a great website or web asset still requires focusing on user experience, aesthetic appeal, and functionality. However, today’s web designers generally have more components and different devices. 

Web design in 2022 is about creating high-quality experiences for customers that can support various environments and devices. The best web designs are aesthetically appealing, functionally reliable, and capable of adhering to the latest trends in web creation, like augmented reality, 360-degree video, and ultra-high resolution. 

 

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A career as a web designer can be extremely lucrative. The average web designer in the US makes around $50-55,000 per year, equating to an hourly rate of around $25. Of course, not every designer will automatically get a full-time, high-paying job as soon as they earn their web design credentials.

Sometimes, you might need to generate a little extra cash, perhaps to supplement your part-time income or keep the lights on while you’re taking some new courses. You can even use your web design skills to earn some extra money on the side while working a standard 9-to-5.

Today, we will be looking at some of the most effective ways to make extra cash on your web design skills.

1. Freelance

Starting with the simplest option, working as a freelancer is one of the best ways to start making cash with your design skills. There are dozens of websites out there to help freelancers find clients these days. Some of the best options include:

  • Toptal: For web developers, designers, and software experts;
  • Upwork: For all kinds of design freelancing;
  • 99Designs: Excellent for selling your designs whenever you like;
  • Dribbble: Display your work and find new clients;
  • Behance: Sell everything from animations to videos;
  • Envato Studio: Sell packages for web design.

As a freelancer, you’ll be able to choose which hours you want to work, and which projects to work on. You can make money from all kinds of design skills this way, from making pages for a website to designing widgets and applications.

However, you’ll also be responsible for tracking down potential leads, building your portfolio, and managing your own taxes, so keep this in mind.

2. Sell Design Assets

As a web design professional, you’ll end up with a lot of assets over the years. Whether you’re working freelance or full-time, not every asset you create is going to be picked up by your customers. Sometimes, you’ll end up with unused content sitting on your computer.

Fortunately, you can leverage these assets for some extra cash. You can sell things like icons, backgrounds, UI assets, and more. You can even sell themes on sites like ThemeForest if you’ve built something your clients weren’t happy with.

There’s a market out there for just about every asset, from icons and PSD templates to documents, fonts, UI assets, backgrounds, and brushes. You might even build your own website where you can sell assets in the future.

3. Design and Sell NFTs

Feel like getting in on the cutting-edge of a new marketplace? NFTs are probably one of the hottest topics in the digital world today. As concepts like Web 3.0 and the metaverse gain traction, NFTs will only become more valuable.

Countless companies and innovators are looking for people to design their NFTs for them these days. If you don’t mind dedicating some of your free time to creating digital graphics, you’re in for a significant amount of earning potential.

If you learn enough about the NFT landscape and blockchain, you could even create your own NFTs. However, this would probably require a lot of time and research. You can learn more about the NFT design and art landscape here.

4. Become a Consultant

Don’t have time to build endless new websites right now? No problem, just help other people build their sites instead. Consultants are people in any industry with expertise and insights they can share to support other people. As a web design consultant, you can offer your expertise to other upcoming freelance designers or business leaders.

You’ll need to invest some time into building your personal brand as a consultant. This means developing your social media pages (like LinkedIn) and creating a portfolio. It also helps to have an air of thought leadership. This usually means you’ll need to share at least some content online.

Consulting can be an excellent way to share your skills with other people without having to do all the work of building a design course.

5. Teach Web Design

On the other hand, if you like the idea of being a teacher, you can make money almost passively with web design courses and webinars these days. While you do have the option of selling one-on-one education to students, this will usually take up a lot of your time.

If your focus right now is on a side hustle to increase your earnings, it’s often much easier to use a site like Udemy or Skillshare. The great thing about teaching web design these days, it’s much easier than you might expect. The majority of solutions on the web allow you to drip content to your clients automatically. This means you only have to create the content once.

You can create a handful of videos, quizzes, and downloadable assets, and make money off your educational resources while you sleep.

6. Create a Web Design Blog

Blogging is still a surprisingly lucrative way to make money. If you have a creative streak and you know how to write about web design in a way other people can understand, you can turn this into an excellent side hustle.

Start by building your own website using your design skills, then start publishing regular blogs with the content you know your customers would be interested in. It’s a good idea to cover a range of topics, from Photoshop, to how to design widgets and more. You can even share reviews of various web design tools and add affiliate links to earn money that way.

Make sure you use SEO strategies to improve your chances of customers actually seeing your blog and promote your content as often as you can across social media. Once you have your blog, you can make money from it by:

  • Working as an affiliate and promoting design products;
  • Showing banner ads or sponsored posts on your website;
  • Selling digital products through your blog (like themes).

If you decide to take the affiliate route, here are some excellent programs to consider.

7. Contribute to other Websites

If you don’t have time to launch your own website and build a following for your blog, you can still make money from writing in other ways. Becoming a freelance web design writer means you can sell your blogs and content to other leading publications.

Many popular websites are constantly looking for new content to add to their blog. If you develop a strong relationship with some of these site owners, you could get yourself a regular gig.

Contributing to other sites as a writer helps you to develop your thought leadership. Many companies will even allow you to link back to your social media pages or profile.

At the same time, you get to earn some extra money writing about things you enjoy.

8. Sell Themes and Templates

A lot of web designers today rely on other themes and templates created for WordPress to help them build their websites. Access to themes and templates can make building a new website a much easier, straightforward process.

If you’ve got some excellent coding prowess, you can develop and sell a host of website themes and templates, and sell them wherever you choose. As mentioned above, there are a number of websites available for selling web design assets. Alternatively, you can sell your own packages and templates on your website, depending on your needs.

If you create a particularly valuable theme, you can actually earn a full-time passive income over time. Placing your themes and templates on marketplace sites will also get you a lot of attention from potential clients in the future.

9. Flip Websites

If you’ve ever seen one of those shows where someone buys a house, makes it look great, and then sells it for a higher price, you’ll understand the basic premise of flipping websites. The idea is to purchase an existing website for a low price (preferably with a good domain name), then fix it up to sell on a website selling directory.

If you want to earn a decent amount of money for your website, you’ll need to dedicate a decent amount of time to building traffic, improving the appearance of the site, and so on. However, it can be fun to take on these projects in your free time if you’re looking for a way to hone your skills.

You might learn some important lessons about how to make websites more profitable while you’re flipping your various sites, which could make you more appealing to customers in the long term.

10. Write a Book

Similar to flipping websites or producing an income from a high-traffic blog, writing a book isn’t something that’s going to give you a lot of extra income overnight. However, it can be an excellent source of passive income in time if you know how to use this strategy correctly.

If you have a specialist skill in web design, or you serve a specific niche, you can generate a lot of attention for an eBook or physical book sharing plenty of accurate and specific information. Remember, writing about web design, in general, will usually make it harder to earn money because there’s already a lot of competition out there.

Writing a book is a fantastic way to create a possible extra source of income as a side hustle, and it can also make you more credible if you decide to go full-time with your web design skills in the future. It’s definitely more impressive to present yourself to clients as a published author.

Remember to advertise your book whenever you can to improve your chances of additional sales.

Find Your Side Hustle

Web design skills are highly sought after in various parts of the digital world. If you’re willing to devote a little time and creativity to exploring the various avenues above, they can all deliver an excellent source of income to you and your potential business. All you need to do is figure out which side hustle makes the most sense for you.

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all. In some cases, you might even be able to run multiple side hustles at the same time, particularly if you’re using strategies for passive income, like writing your own book or selling your own course.

 

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Introduction

In the field of app testing, QA managers and other senior testing professionals must implement different test management approaches such as test monitoring and control to ensure that the test suite runs smoothly. These essential management strategies are required by the managers to track and align the test progress for optimal accuracy and efficiency.

What Is Test Monitoring?

Test monitoring is a test execution process in which all testing activities and efforts are evaluated to:

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Introduction

The Internet is inevitable in the current time. It is everywhere, and the entire world depends on it to function, perform day-to-day activities and stay connected with people from different corners. Gone are the days when testers only chose to create websites for selected browsers and hardly faced issues maintaining a website on a few browsers. As the technology matured, many significant players entered the browser market. Even the users evolved, became tech-savvy, and improved their browsing habits. Now was a time when businesses were in critical need of cross-browser testing and responsive testing to stay ahead of the competition. Cross-browser testing focuses on the website’s overall functionality; responsive web testing verifies the look and feel of the web application. Cross-browser testing deals with the analysis of the web browsers that their users use, and responsive testing deals with the devices where the company’s user base visits the websites. Let us shed some light and understand cross-browser and responsive testing in detail.

What Is Cross Browser Testing?

We all know that testing cross-browser compatibility of websites « is of utmost importance. It helps understand how stable your web application is across various technologies, browsers, operating systems, and devices. The adoption of cross-browser testing is to provide a better user experience irrespective of which browser-OS-device combination your users use to access your website. In cross-browser testing, the testers generally validate the web application’s functionality and ensure its user-friendliness and performance are up to the mark across the web browsers. Businesses can also take the help of cloud-based automated cross-browser testing tools to have access to a wide range of real devices to test their web and mobile applications. Different browser engines render websites differently; even the version of each browser causes the code uniquely. It means the code behind the websites is read differently by every browser. So, various cross-browser testing strategies are critical for website accessibility. It is how different browsers render a web page:

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