December 28, 2020
In this era dominated by technology and the internet, making the most of an online presence is a must for any business owner. Not only does it help to maintain a presence on social networking sites, but it’s also recommended to create a website for you and your services. Thanks to WordPress, creating a site has never been easier.
A whopping thirty-nine percent of the World Wide Web is built on WordPress, and millions of bloggers, small business owners, and Fortune 500 companies are regular users of the site-developing platform. This isn’t surprising, really, as WordPress boasts countless themes and layouts that are easy to use. However, with that kind of popularity, it may be particularly difficult for users to stand out unless they keep up with yearly trends.
If you’re a WordPress user or plan to become one in the coming year, here are a few things to keep in mind as you create and maintain your site.
Prioritizing inclusivity is so important for business owners, even in an online space, which is why it’s so important to consider the needs of those who are differently-abled. This includes, but is not limited to, deafness or hearing impairment, blindness or vision impairment, cognitive impairment, or motor difficulties. How can you create a WordPress site that’s easily accessible for all? Keep things like title tags to describe what the page is about, closed-captioning on videos, and interfacing with assistive technology (like ARIA) in mind as you design the layout and content of your website.
2. Virtual Reality
Thanks to the need to stay inside for the majority of 2020, companies that rely on in-person interaction to stay afloat have had to find other ways to offer their services. Teleconferencing applications, like Zoom or LifeSize, have come in handy, but in other instances, the use of 3D virtual reality programs has proven to be a useful tool, especially for real estate agencies, museums, art galleries, and more.
Even as businesses begin to re-open physical locations and a sense of normalcy emerges in a post-COVID world, virtual reality does not appear to be going anywhere any time soon, which is why it’s a trend worth taking advantage of. Consider the use of a virtual reality plug-in on your WordPress site to allow customers from different locations to interact with your site and services in a way that feels a bit more interactive than simply scrolling through text.
3. Thumb-Scrolling for Mobile Users
We live in an age where the majority who access your website will most likely do so from a smartphone, so designing a WordPress site that’s accessible on a mobile device is a must. But it’s not enough to simply make sure you can access the site from a phone; you have to consider the placement of icons, photos, and links, too. More than likely, a mobile device user is scrolling down the screen with their thumb, so consider making little changes to your mobile site’s layout, like putting icons and links in the center of the screen so they can be easily reached with either thumb and adding an easily seen and accessible menu.
4. Hire a WordPress maintenance expert.
Nowadays, it’s not uncommon for web designers to declare WordPress sites as their area of expertise. So, when attempting to keep up with WordPress trends, wouldn’t it make sense to enlist the help of someone who makes it their business to know exactly what’s most popular at any given time?
Design services like Alt Creative use WordPress to help organizations, businesses, and individuals find online success. Alt Creative, for example, takes the time to learn about your site and company’s design needs to create a brand new online space or renovate and market an already existing one. These kinds of services do their part to guarantee an appealing design and provide a user-friendly website for you and your customers.
5. Minimalist Themes and White Space
A design style previously dubbed as boring by many has made its way to the forefront of web design. Minimalistic themes are not only visually appealing, but also easier to navigate, as they eliminate the distractions created by an over-filled screen.
But won’t a somewhat empty screen bore website visitors? No! Never underestimate the power of white space. While you might initially dismiss it as wasted space that will drive traffic away from your website, white space actually draws people in and gives their eyes a much-needed place to rest in the midst of brightly colored photos and black text. And perhaps the most important advantage of white space is its ability to eliminate distraction. Rather than surrounding the most important elements on your website with other content, consider leaving the space blank so the viewer’s eyes are directed to the focal point quickly.
September 28, 2020
Remember Black Friday door-buster deals that had people jamming their way through the front doors of retail stores in frenzies throughout the nation? Consider that a thing of the past.
Even Wal-Mart, which draws massive crowds each year for its holiday specials, is closing on Thanksgiving in 2020 — a decision that underscores both the changes in customer behavior as a result of COVID-19 as well as the increasing focus on online sales.
August 10, 2020
In a competitive digital landscape, it’s almost impossible to achieve desired website traffic and conversions without effective search engine optimization. Unfortunately, while SEO can drive impressive results, the optimization process is notoriously effort-intensive.
Many business owners lack the time and expertise needed to tackle the complications of SEO on their own. The right agency, however, can take over, providing the guidance and feedback needed to ensure that every digital marketing dollar is used effectively. While a variety of SEO companies provide valuable services, not all are capable of delivering an equally impressive ROI. The wrong agency could compromise digital efforts while wasting limited resources.
June 15, 2020
If you’ve done the math, you know that selling products and services online is a golden opportunity. eCommerce sales are expected to reach $4.8 trillion by 2021, nearly double the level they were at just three years ago.
But, if you run an online business, you know that finding ways to increase traffic and sales can be a tall order. The internet has become crowded, and consumer habits have changed.
The average eCommerce conversion rates are just 2-3%, so your business needs to find some ways to stand out. Here are eight methods you can use to boost eCommerce conversions and business results.
April 22, 2020
Workplaces all across the country are expanding remote work programs to help their employees work while social distancing. With the rise of COVID-19, working from home has become the new normal.
But when you’re working with a virtual team, you’ll be facing a unique set of challenges. Productivity, communication, and collaboration can be difficult without the face to face interaction of a typical workplace. Finding and using the best technology can make all the difference.
Here are five essential tools you’ll need to start working from home.
February 24, 2020
Social media might seem like top dog in today’s internet marketing sphere, but email continues to hold strong as one of the chief sources of digital communication.
Like online marketing in general, best practices for reaching customers via email have changed considerably in the last few years. The very tactics that drove website traffic and conversions just a few years ago risk turning away today’s discerning email recipients.
January 27, 2020
The vast majority of Americans now shop online at least occasionally, with some turning to eCommerce for the majority of their shopping needs. This presents a huge opportunity for modern businesses, but also, a few notable risks.
December 13, 2019
2019 has blazed by, and 2020 is already just around the corner. If you aren’t already, now is an excellent time to take a look back at what your business looked like this year. What were your benchmarks? Did you hit them? What ended up differently than you thought? What audience did you reach the most?
If you’re looking back on some of those benchmarks and coming up short, take it as an opportunity to figure out why and tighten up your game for next year. Here we’ll go over some ways you can do exactly that. Even if you crushed it in 2019, it can’t hurt to look through and see which of these digital marketing best practices could help you do even better next year.
September 23, 2019
One of the essential elements of any website is speed. And one of the best ways to ensure a speedy website is to use a fast WordPress theme. Sites that load quickly engage users and rank higher on search engines, while slow sites (those that take more than three seconds to load) lose 40% of visitors. Here are some of the fastest, most lightweight WordPress themes for you to try.
GeneratePress is one of the fastest WordPress themes available. The demo site loads in just over one second. It is a fully customizable, multi-purpose theme and can be used to build any website.
GeneratePress is available in free and premium versions. At $49.95 with a 30-day money-back guarantee, the premium version is hard to beat. It is a robust theme with 15 modules that you can activate or deactivate individually, which allows you to minimize load on your site further.
Key Features Include:
- Schema Markup support to improve your search engine rankings and click-through-rates.
- An Importable ready-to-use demo site library to jumpstart your WordPress site.
- A lightweight theme that loads quickly.
- Full support of WordPress Theme Customizer, allowing you to make on-the-fly design changes without writing code.
- Support for plugins like Elementor and Beaver Builder.
- Translation readiness for multiple languages.
- A fully responsive design that works on all devices.
- Advanced customization allowing you to disable features, build unique layouts, and create custom content. You can also customize every sidebar and footer for each page and post.
GeneratePress is rated one of WordPress.org’s top themes. It is easy-to-use, fast, responsive, and, at less than 1 MB zipped, indeed a lightweight theme.
Astra, designed by Brainstorm Force, is lightweight, fast, and user-friendly. How fast, you ask? Astra loads in less than half a second. Astra is also free. You can upgrade to Astra Pro Addon for an affordable $59 with a 14-day money-back guarantee. Astra Pro Addon extends customizations and adds features. There is also an Astra Agency package for $249 that offers pre-made websites and all associated plugins.
Key Features Include:
- Works with BeaverBuilder, WPBakery, Elementor, Divi, and other page builders.
- User-friendly admin interface.
- Elegant designs for all types of businesses.
- Predesigned, importable starter sites.
- Easily customizable without writing code.
- SEO friendly
- Easy integration with WooCommerce.
If you need an elegant, fast, and customizable WordPress theme, Astra might be right for you.
Elementor Hello is a lightweight starter theme for use with Elementor or Elementor Pro, the drag-and-drop page builder WordPress plugins. When used together, you can easily and quickly create beautiful websites. This theme is free.
Key Features Include:
- Lightweight. There are no extras like add-on modules or additional third-party scripts.
- Extendable with hooks.
- Must be used with Elementor and Elementor Pro.
Elementor Hello is a great lightweight starter theme offering 100% compatibility with Elementor.
Schema, designed by MyThemeShop, is another fast-loading WordPress theme. It is responsive, fully customizable, and lightweight. Schema is a particularly apt choice for creating a blog. This theme is available for $59 with a 30-day money-back guarantee. There is no free version.
Key Features Include:
- A responsive design that adapts to all screen sizes.
- An ad management panel to help manage the ads on your website.
- Google font support.
- Support for related posts built-in without any additional plugins.
- Support for rich snippets. If your post is a review, Google will show a star rating in your Search Engine result snippet.
Schema is a fast loading lightweight theme worth your attention, particularly if you are creating a blog.
These are a few of the fastest, most lightweight WordPress themes out there. Are you curious about which theme is best for you? Do you have other questions about your WordPress site? Contact us. We can help.
August 14, 2019
While effective content marketing demands both a solid strategy and a talented team, credit must also go to the right tools. Content marketing technology is growing every year and can streamline productivity, increase efficiency, and boost lead generation. Here are 7 content marketing tools to add to your content marketing strategy today. Read More