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Instagram & Vine – The Mobile Video Showdown

July 17th, 2013 by Erin Peters

blog-image-mobile-videoIf the Buggles had only known how forward thinking their lyrics were back in 1979, they may have danced to “Longer bite sized video with custom photo filters & editing features slowed down the other video app Star,” in their hit song. But it just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

The app best known for photo-sharing added video last month. Now, when any company with a large user base announces a major change to its app or site, the reaction can be both positive and negative. In this case, most of the negative reviews are due to amateur videos clogging up the users’ feeds or slowing down their ability to view photos.

Similar to Twitter’s Vine app, holding down the video icon will capture video. Releasing it will allow you to pause the video.

“It’s everything we know and love about Instagram, but it moves,” Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom said.

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Penguin 2.0 & What it Means for your Website!

June 25th, 2013 by Erin Peters

The long-anticipated Penguin 2.0 is an update aimed at combating web spam. The update was rolled out on Wednesday, May 22nd and is expected to affect 2.3% of English web queries.

To be clear, this is an update to the algorithm and not just a data refresh. The fourth penguin algorithm update can yield changes in the search results on the larger end of the spectrum.GRA penguin infographic 200px

Recent changes to Google’s search engine ranking algorithms are already having an impact. Aggressive link building tactics will be lost within Google’s search, while authenticity will be rewarded.

It is important that you be natural and authentic so you will be less likely affected by Google’s ongoing improvements to its algorithms. Your content should be fresh. There will be no ‘quick fixes’ or placeholder bandaids, forcing user-centric research and implementation of best practice SEO.

This is great news for companies (like Graphtek) who already are practicing good SEO, not so good for some other companies who aren’t practicing good SEO.

“The perfect search engine would understand exactly what you mean and give back exactly what you want,” Google’s cofounder and CEO, Larry Page Read the rest of this entry »

Graphtek sends well wishes to Justin!

June 17th, 2013 by Erin Peters


As a Web Support Technician with Graphtek, Justin Pulsifer is responsible for providing a variety of timely and accurate technical customer support. Graphtek hired Justin in 2012, recognizing his passion for technology and gadgetry.  Justin goes above and beyond to provide each of our customers the best possible website customer service. Justin Pulsifer

If you had email questions, an issue with your website or training for our content management system to update your website, it’s likely that you spoke to Justin.

At just 19 years old, he is leaving to pursue his education and find out what the next stage of his young life holds. Find out a little more about Graphtek’s support technician and help us wish him well!

Graphtek: How long have you been with Graphtek?

Justin: I’ve been with Graphtek for 10 and a half awesome months.

Graphtek: What exactly is your role with Graphtek?

Justin: I’m a Support Technician which means I answer Support calls and respond to Support tickets.

Grahtek: What are your plans for the summer?

Justin:  My plans for the summer are to work at a summer camp for 3 weeks. A few weeks after that I will be moving to Orance County to go to School.

Graphtek: When did you start getting interested in website support and computer technology?

Justin: I started to get extremely interested in technology around age seven. I was one of those curious kids who would end up taking apart the TV remote controller to see how it worked.

Graphtek: What do you appreciate/love about Graphtek?

Justin: I appreciate the people I work with so much and the amazing atmosphere they provide to work in.

Graphtek: Will you miss us? If so, what will you miss most?

Justin: I definitely will miss all of you! I will definitely miss the community here.

Graphtek: What do you find rewarding about your job?

Justin: I found the excited responses I received from clients to be the most rewarding. I always love making peoples days and if I can do that in the field I am most passionate about then I will probably be more excited than them.

Graphtek: Any funny/awesome moments since you’ve been here?

Justin: I think there are to many to count or remember. Almost every day working at Graphtek is funny and/or awesome! Like I said before the atmosphere here is amazing so every day here is  just as awesome as the previous.

Graphtek: Do you know if you’re coming back?

Justin: I have been in the Coachella Valley my whole life and I am dead set on living in a couple more places after Orange County so I just don’t know. Only time will tell, I won’t be coming back for at least another 5 years at minimum I can tell you that much.

Drupal: The Power Behind Your Website

June 7th, 2013 by Erin Peters

Drupal is an open source content management platform powering millions of websites and applications. It’s built, used, and supported by an active and diverse community of people around the world. At the simplest level, it’s a piece of software that allows someone to easily manage the content of their website. It allows you to edit the content through a web browser. Drupal was built in 2000 by Belgians and released as open source in 2001. dupal blog image resized 600

A node is the basic building block of Drupal. A node is the content that is being managed and is at the heart of Drupal’s design.  There can be many different types of discrete content. Users can be given different permissions for each type of content. The underlying framework of Drupal also allows additional functionality and capabilities with their numerous modules. Read the rest of this entry »

Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing

May 14th, 2013 by Erin Peters

A wise philosopher, Blaise Pascal, once said “the art of persuasion has a necessary relation to the manner in which men are lead to consent to that which is proposed to them.”Inbound marketing blog 3 resized 600

Your average person today is inundated with over 2,000 outbound marketing interruptions daily.  Cold calls do little more than annoy the prospective customer, and usually during dinner.  Outbound marketers are trying to attract and convert the very people who are actively blocking access. We are figuring out more and more creative ways to block them out, including Tivo, caller ID, spam filtering, and Sirius satellite radio.

This is where inbound marketing comes in.  It’s less obtrusive, highly accurate and attracts more qualified leads to your website, at a lower cost.  For the exeption of social media advertising/media & your valuable time, inbound marketing is earned media, not paid media. Read the rest of this entry »

Nicole Middleton Joins Graphtek as Account Manager

May 1st, 2013 by Erin Peters

PALM DESERT, CA (April 26, 2013)– Graphtek Interactive has named Nicole Middleton as an Account Manager for the digital marketing and website design agency. Middleton will be responsible for managing existing accounts, as well as working to acquire new ones. Read the rest of this entry »

Twitter is Big for Business

April 29th, 2013 by Erin Peters

With over 140 million active twitter accounts, and 340 million tweets a day, businesses can’t afford to ignore this leading social network. Twitter is a constant and flowing conversation that is happening and it’s your choice whether your business wants to be a part of it.Twitter Business resized 600

A robust social media presence enhances your SEO results. Your Twitter account is no exception; these tweets support your digital marketing efforts by helping your business rank in search.

How to get started?

  1. Update Your Bio: Make sure to include keywords in your bio for SEO purposes. This bio is often displayed on the search results pages, so make it descriptive and accurate.
  2. Build Your Reach: The two primary search crawlers said their algorithms check the authority of every user tweeting content.
  3. Tweet for Retweets: While Twitter allows for 140 characters, make sure your tweets have 10-20 characters of space for “RT @ username”. Also, data shows that 120-130 character tweets have the highest clickthrough-rates (CTR).
  4. Link placement: Place links about 25% of the way through the tweet.
  5. Use action words: More verbs, fewer nouns.
  6. Data show that 15-25 tweets per day is the sweet spot for increasing following.

Read the rest of this entry »

Why SEO is Crucial to Your Business

April 10th, 2013 by Erin Peters

Staying on top of search results can be an ongoing battle and to many, is a bit of a mystery. 80% of the US population – approximately 240 million people – are online.  There are over 600 million websites on the Internet and this number is growing steadily. SEO is not marketing of yesteryear. Newspaper syndication and tv media buys have declined at increasing rates over the past 7 years.

And one thing that will remain constant about Search Engine Optimization is change.  It’s vital to keep abreast of the latest news from leaders in SEO techniques. The role of SEO lies in the content of websites. In SEO, you not only need to know what competitorSEO blog resized 600s are doing, but also know how the industry is changing.

Do you want to increase awareness of your brand?

Do you want to bring relevant traffic to your website?

Then read on…

By using a combination of on-page and off-page techniques such as blogging, sitemaps and link building, search engines can index your site and start moving it up the listings.

Links or hyperlinks from other relevant websites, that link to your content, make up a percentage of how popular search engines perceive your website.

Along with Google’s “Penguin” update, the introduction of more social networks and the increased adoption among more age groups has changed the rules of SEO.

Now, social networks, blogs and email all compete to drive substantial visits.  The diversity and flexibility of social media are what make it the perfect supplement to any SEO campaign. The combination of these channels into an inbound strategy is a powerful force.

Social signals such as tweets, +1’s and “likes” can help you become more visible in search and get your content indexed quickly.  Simply, social activity can increase organic search traffic to your site.

As we are moving from social recommendations to recommendation engines, it’s becoming more important to not only share interesting and relevant content, but to listen to your audience. We have been subconsciously trained to value personal recommendations and expert opinions at a higher rate than paid advertising. When people search for you, your business, products, or services what do they find? Social SEO is particularly useful for online reputation management.small SEO infographic 200x695 resized 600

And what is at the root of social media and blogging? High-quality original content. With last year’s aquatic, flightless bird updates, they have eliminated the “tricks” and made it easier for people to find what they’re looking for. Content comes in many forms, including infographics, white papers, eBooks, blog entries and educational videos.

Do this and the links will come.

So, why should you care? And what does the latest Google update have to do with a penguin anyway?

The importance of SEO is about tapping into the addressable market potential in order to covert sales or garner a following.

Organic search engine results are 85% of all end users clicks, as opposed to only 15% for sponsored ads, like Pay Per Click (PPC).  SEO is an investment into the future of your business! In short, without SEO it will be far more difficult, if not impossible, to overcome your online competition. Search engine positioning is simply the best and most cost effective way to become visible on the Internet.

Mothers, sisters, sons, bloggers, businesses and industries are able to tap into feelings that hadn’t before been expressed, in public, on the internet. The opinions, news, information, products and services that are viewed more often are those that know how to create, curate, optimize and share valuable content, digitally.

In today’s society, all of us have the potential to be writers and publishers and for the first time in history, this communication is more collaborative than ever. While the digital world will not wait, the online world has empowered us to find new ideas, share our lives and grow our businesses beyond our imagination.

P.S. The “Penguin” update refers to the DC Comics supervillain, Batman’s oldest and persistent enemy. Webspammers are search engine supervillains. These ‘enemies’ use specialized tools to spam Google while hiding behind IP proxies. I just hope this doesn’t give penguins a bad rep.

Pinterest – The Social Media Darling

March 21st, 2013 by Erin Peters

Pinterest didn’t take the usual route of Web-based startups. Instead of seducing early adopters first, Pinterest grew a devoted base of users who enjoy “pinning” items they find around the Web. Pinterest

And as a woman, I was one of these ‘pin happy’ people. Call it a virtual bulletin board; instead of ripping out home improvement, clothing ads or vacation ideas and creating a bulky file, pin and organize images to your heart’s content!

Pinterest is proving that sharing in the social sphere is following some interesting trends.

–          Sharing involves less and less effort.
–          Social sites are becoming more visual.
–          “Topic-centric” networks are outweighing “people-centric” recommendations.

And before you say to yourself that this is just a passing fad, think again.

A whopping 47% of U.S. online consumers have made a purchase based on recommendations from Pinterest.  And back in December, the White House unveiled it’s Pinterest account. IBM and the American Red Cross also pin and share images regularly.

So, how will your Pinterest page translate into results for your business?

Pinterest buyers spend more money, more often, and on more items than any of the other top five social media sites.

Pinterest now has business accounts and has launched its new web analytics.  If you want to convert your personal account to a business account, go to business.pinterest.com and click the red ‘Convert your existing account’ button.

Pinterest will then guide you through the ‘Business Type’ choice that’s most appropriate for you by providing parenthetical examples next to each type.  Verifying your website lets you highlight your full website URL on your business account. To verify your account, follow these steps:

  1. Login to your account and go to ‘Settings.’
  2. Download the HTML verification file and follow Pinterest’s instructions
  3. Click the bold ‘Download the HTML verification file’ to down the file
  4. Upload the file you just downloaded to your web server.
  5. Click the bold ‘Click here’ text on the verification screen.

And now Pinterest has a new look! You will need to activate Pinterest’s new look if you want to access Pinterest’s analytics. This is definitely a step in the right direction for bloggers, businesses and companies wanting to find out what people are pinning from their sites. They will also show you a selection of your most repinned, most clicked, and most recent pins so you have a better idea of what’s popular.

Pinterest Analytics resized 600

Visits to your website from Pinterest are reflective of the amount of referral traffic your website has attracted from Pinterest. That’s why images on your website are a fantastic way to showcase your products or services.

Click on the profile menu located to the far right of your page. Scroll down to “Switch To The New Look.”

The big difference with the new look is:

–          Pins from the same board: You can explore the entire board without leaving the page you’re on.
–          Pins from the same source: Find other things pinned from the same website.
–          People who pinned this also pinned.

Now, when you scroll through pins and click on something that interests you, the back button lands you right back where you were no matter how far you’ve gone.

Pinterest offers four different types of buttons and widgets to add to your website:

  • Pin It Button: lets people pin an item from your website to Pinterest. It helps site visitors share your site’s visual content more easily on Pinterest.
  • Follow Button: Let site visitors follow your business on Pinterest and grow your social reach.
  • Profile Widget: This lets you show up to 30 of your latest pins anywhere on your website. It’s valuable to businesses trying to grow their Pinterest following.
  • Board Widget: This lets you show up to 30 of your favorite board’s latest pins.

Finally, like any social account or page, optimizing is an important factor.  Consider the following when optimizing your page. Descriptions play an integral role: place keywords in the descriptions of your images, with an accurate description. Don’t forget to describe the board!

Want help with Pinterest set up and creating an eye-catching account?  Call us!

Happy Pinning!

9 Ways to Get a Killer CTA & Attract Leads!

March 12th, 2013 by Erin Peters

What is a CTA and why should you care? A CTA is a clickable image or text that prompts visitors to do something next. Calls to actions urge or solicit a user to take an immediate action. And a call to action is not just limited to ecommerce sites. Every website should have a call to action.

calls to blog action graphic

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