Tag Archives: Web Design

Web Design Trends 2020

Category: News
Now that 2020 is upon us, we’ve been focusing on the web design trends for the coming year to ensure we keep up to date with the latest and greatest in design and technology. It seems that gone are the days of drop shadows and fussy design elements and we look towards a year of more minimalist and simple design with the addition of beautiful and futuristic elements. We’ll take a look at some of the new trends below. web design trends 2020

Dark Mode

A big focus this year lies with dark mode design features. We’ve seen dark mode grow popularity across a wide range of platforms in the past year or so such as Twitter, YouTube, iOS and more. The dark backgrounds enhance the colours and elements on pages and are a great basis to showcase beautiful photography also. See a nice example by clicking here.

Minimalist Design

Having a simple basis again allows the elements on page to become the main feature as these are no longer lost within a wide array of clustered graphics. A minimal design is user friendly, easy on the eyes and straight to the point. Fussy menus and navigation are becoming outdated as they lead to end user frustration. Hidden navigations and desktop burger menus are an option as they maintain the required menu items but are only activated on user interaction. So in 2020, keep an eye out for lots of empty space simplifying website functionality.

Full Screen Forms

Continuing on with the minimalist design features, full screen forms and lead captures are likely to be a common theme across the web design industry in 2020. Big forms with clear and easy to read fields and surrounded with white space are both user friendly and effective building up leads and contact lists. There are a wide range of options and plugins out there to incorporate these onto your website.

Parallax

Parallax has been around for a number of years at this stage but seems to be sticking around more so than other techniques that have come and gone. For the next year, parallax looks to be a key player in terms of building functional yet interactive websites. The illusion of parallax scrolling enhances basic pages and brings them to life. A great example can be seen here. This is just a brief overview of what you can expect in 2020. Some more trends to look out for are as follows:
  • 3D Elements and Artwork
  • Split screen content
  • Solid frames
  • Combining photography and graphics
2Cubed are on hand to assist with any questions you may have. Check out a full list of services and our website process here – https://2cubed.ie/services/ You can use our dedicated quotation form below or contact us with any questions you may have here. Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon

SEO for SMEs

Category: News
If you’re a business owner and you’re looking to expand your online presence, having an SEO strategy in place is sure to bring many benefits. SEO is a complex subject and as the graph below shows, there are many elements that make up SEO overall.

SEO for your Business

A large number of SMEs tend to focus on traditional marketing practices and understandably so as these may have brought success over many years. However, SEO should now be a crucial consideration for any business with a website in order to meet targets and set business goals. This is especially true for SMEs looking to build an online presence. Competition is something we all deal with in business and SEO is no different. However, having a well planned and thought out SEO strategy can have a number of benefits.

Benefits of SEO

  • Increased traction on search engines (getting your site and brand out there)
  • High quality, relevant traffic to your website
  • A higher possibility to convert a website user into a sale or to convert a goal
  • Decreased budgets on other marketing activities
  • The opportunity to sit down and focus on priority keywords and phrases (how would you like your ideal user to find you?)
To summarise, by deciding SEO is a feasible option for your website, you are sure to see some benefits from doing so. As an SME, coming into 2020 this should be high on your list of marketing priorities moving forward. You can read more on our Digital Marketing service here – https://2cubed.ie/services/search-engine-optimisation/ Our expert team is on hand to assist with any questions you may have. Check out a full list of services and our website process here – https://2cubed.ie/services/ You can use our dedicated quotation form below or contact us with any questions you may have here. Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon

Which eCommerce Platform Should I Choose?

Category: News
If you run a business and are looking to sell online, there are multiple eCommerce platform options available in today’s market. It’s easier than ever to set up an online store to sell products nowadays but that doesn’t guarantee you will actually be successful.which ecommerce platform should I choose

Which eCommerce Platform is Right For My Business?

Once you have decided to begin the journey of selling your products or services online, you should note the many options to consider. Many platforms have varying degrees of options, functionality and cost. The most popular options may not always perhaps be the best option for your business and that’s why a good deal of thought should be factored into any considerations. Some examples of the more well-known eCommerce platforms are as follows – A good place to start is by mapping out what you would like to do with your store; multi-site, multi language, discounts & offers, cart abandonments etc etc. There’s a lot to consider so 2Cubed are on hand to assist you in this process. We have many years experience helping businesses in Ireland build a solid online presence in order to sell items successfully. Our expert team is on hand to assist with any questions you may have. Check out a full list of services and our website process here – https://2cubed.ie/services/ You can use our dedicated quotation form below or contact us with any questions you may have here. Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon  

Change Website Design Company

If you’ve been thinking of changing website design company recently, we have put together a list of requirements in order to make the transition an easy and stress free experience, whether you are looking to change website provider, change hosting company or just looking to have your website maintained.

What will I need?

Depending on the service you require, the list of items will differ. However, it’s always good practice to have, or at least know, where your website is hosted. In addition, where your domain name is registered and hosted, how your business emails are configured and knowing this information will save a huge amount of time when switching companies. Once the above items have been resolved (we can help with all of this), we will take over and work behind the scenes to enable your new service in a prompt and professional manner. At this point, you can sit back and relax! 2Cubed Web Design & Development offer a wide range of services to help you with your online presence. Some of these services include:
  • Website Hosting
  • Domain Management
  • Website Maintenance
  • Website Monitoring
  • Security Monitoring
  • Fixing website hacks
  • Improving website speed and performance
  • Plugin updates
  • Dedicated support channel between 9am-10:30am every morning (support@2cubed.ie)
Our expert team is on hand to assist with any questions you may have. Check out a full list of services and our website process here – https://2cubed.ie/services/ You can use our dedicated quotation form below or contact us with any questions you may have here. Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon  

Keyword Research

In order to grow your online business, to drive traffic toward your site and achieve set goals, a fundamental area is keyword research. Whether you plan on developing a solid SEO strategy or a PPC campaign, keyword research gives you the option to fully research and think about what your users may search for. keyword research

What are keywords?

Keywords are essentially the words or terms that you enter into a search engine when looking for an answer or a service. Put yourself in your ideal users’ shoes for a moment and think about the path they should take in order to see your website. Whether you are selling products, providing a service or providing information to users, you’ll see a huge benefit from developing a keyword strategy.

Where do I start?

Start by mapping out some broad terms related to your website. Keep them relevant to your sector and what you do. From here, you can begin to build out more long-tail keywords which are more specific to what you offer. Long-tail keywords are the three or four word terms that accurately describe your product. For example, take a store selling sporting goods. They would begin with some general but competitive keywords like sporting goodssport shop and so on. From here, narrow it down to more specific items such as hockey equipment Dublin, boys running shoes Kilkenny, Wexford kids GAA shirt etc. By developing and implementing these long-tail keywords in to your website content, you’ll have a much better chance of being found on the search engines. On top of this, more relevant traffic to your website and the chance to convert these users into sales. The long-tail keywords usually have less competition and a higher chance of conversion!

Useful Keyword Planner tools

There are many options online to assist with keyword research. Some free tools are available but may be quite limited. You’ll have far more features and options with some paid tools. Wordstream – https://www.wordstream.com/keywords Google Keyword Planner (connected to Adwords) – Keyword Planner Wordtracker – https://www.wordtracker.com/ By developing a keyword strategy for your website, you’ll give yourself every chance to be successful online. The importance of this can’t be understated. By using some of the keyword tools, you’ll get some fresh ideas for keywords that you may not have considered previously. Taking these terms and implementing them into your blogs, PPC, SEO and on-page content should enhance your online visibility greatly! At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we offer a number of options to help you develop and a keyword strategy. In addition, we also offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services and our website process – https://2cubed.ie/services/ Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon  

Website Specification

When you are deciding on a new website, it’s important to take into consideration a number of factors. As you can see on the graphic below, we’ve created a simple process to assist with this. This planning process is critical to ensure you have a clear picture in mind for a new website. Failing to cover these steps before a website is created can lead to items or processes to be overlooked and cause problems down the line. At 2Cubed, we want to ensure you have a clear picture in mind when considering a new website and we can assist you fully with this process to ensure success. 

What to consider?

Planning and building a new website is a complicated matter. Items can be overlooked and when a specification is not clear. A good starting point is to look at some websites you admire and list why you think so.  Design or Redesign? Are you looking for a completely new design or a refresh of what you currently have?  Expectations It’s crucial to consider your expectations when planning on a new website build. What is it that you are looking to achieve with the new site? Do you have any goals or ambitions for what you’re looking to achieve? Information What is your company all about? By documenting this, you can make it clear to your web design agency what you are all about and by using tag-lines, slogans, mottos etc to allow end users understand your ethos. Budget A new website is a huge investment and you’ll need to ensure you consider this carefully when developing a website specification. Defining a budget allows your agency to consider the expectations vs budget and help you plan accordingly. Timeline / Deadline Deadlines are a crucial are of the website specification. Setting a deadline firstly allows the entire project to be split into separate deliverables to keep all parties on the same page and to also ensure your expectations are met. Functionality Will your website users need to register? Are you selling products? At this point it’s beneficial to consider each and every element.  UI / UX After you decide on budgets, timelines and functionality, how will this all transition into front end user interface and user experience? Many times, consideration of these factors is left aside and may become an issue in future as the website is out the to the world. Further Information Thinking about any extra information or off topic items considered outside the above ensures clarity when moving forward with your web design project. At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we are on hand to assist you with developing your website specification, helping you to understand in detail what’s involved in a new website project. We also offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/ Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon

8 Great WordPress Plugins

wordpress plugins If your site uses WordPress, you’re probably familiar with plugins. Plugins are there to make life easier, essentially. We’ve gone through some of the top plugins on WordPress and picked out 8 that you may want to consider for your site.
  • Woocommerce – Woocommerce powers over 40% of all eCommerce websites on the web. Powerful and easy to use, it allows you to manage products, orders, discount codes and much more. You can read more on Woocommerce here
  • Yoast SEO – Yoast is a plugin to help with SEO on your site. Yoast is a free plugin but the premium version offers more features for advanced SEO. See here for more information.
  • WP Rocket – A number of caching tools are available for WordPress sites and WP Rocket is one of the most popular. Caching helps to maximise site performance and improve speed. The free version offers limited features but a premium version with more advanced options is available. You can read more on WP Rocket here
  • Elementor – This page builder has become one of the more popular tools out there in the past year and the reviews are outstanding. This powerful page builder allows you to easily manage page content and includes both a free and premium version. See here for more.
  • Smush – This plugin is mainly used for image compression and resizing. Having multiple large images on your site will cause issues with speed and performance. Smush helps with this by automatically compressing images once uploaded and again comes with either a free or premium version. You can view the full list of features here
  • Slider Revolution  – Powering over 2.5 million websites, Slider Revolution allows you to add sliders, carousels and more. Currently there isn’t a free version but it is cheap to purchase and includes a good deal of functionality but the premium version gives access to many more templates and features. View a full list of features here
  • Sucuri  – This security plugin helps to flag any security issues or breaches on your website and alerts you if anything does happen. Generally, your website host will look after security but this added layer of protection gives you peace of mind. See here for more info 
  • Redirection – This plugin allows you to easily manage 301s, 404s and more which can help reduce errors and improve site ranking. This plugin can be a useful tool but used incorrectly it can cause some issues. Take a look at more features here 
These are just some of the tools you can use to improve your WordPress site. *Please be aware that installing and updating plugins on your website may cause some issues* At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, helping you decide on and install / updating plugins. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/ Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon

A Quick Guide to Technical SEO

In this post, we’ll look at a critical element of search engine optimisation; Technical SEO. This has become a fundamental and sometimes overlooked area of SEO but we’ll explain why it’s more important than ever below. Technical SEO contains many topics we could dive in to, but by understanding the key elements, it should allow you to gain an understanding of what it is and best practices to follow. As you would have seen in or SEO Audit post, technical SEO was listed as a key element along with on-page and off-page optimisation. So, what exactly does it mean? Essentially, the technical health of your site indicates how well Google and other search engines can crawl and index the information on your website. If they encounter any issues, these will be flagged as errors or warnings in Google Search Console. By resolving these issues, you’ll ensure your site is in good standing from a technical sense and means that the site crawlers can index your site fully without any obstacles. Some of the common issues you’ll need to address are as follows:
  • 404 errors – nobody likes seeing these, especially soft 404s. You can manage 404s by implementing 301 redirects
  • 5XX errors – server errors or timeouts which are blocking access to pages
  • noindex issues – noindex is commonly used to block access to a page that you do not wish to be indexed (such as private or secure pages). If you submit a url in the sitemap but it includes a noindex tag then you’ll need to address this
  • blocked by robots.txt – another method to block access to a page. You can see more here – https://support.google.com/webmasters/
  • Mobile Usability – Google analyse each page and flag any anomalies that may cause a poor user experience on mobile. For example, if clickable elements are too close together, if a page is not fully mobile responsive, text is too small to read and so on. Keeping your site fully mobile responsive ensures a good user experience, decreased bounce rate and just an overall better experience for your website users.  
Most of the errors above can be viewed on the Index Coverage Status report within Google Search Console – https://support.google.com/webmasters/ This brief overview of technical SEO should hopefully give more understanding of the variables a search engine goes through in order to show your website on Google. At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, allowing you to ensure your website is in good technical standing. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/ Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon  

What is Structured Data?

As structured data becomes more important, you are likely to see the term more and more. So what exactly does it mean? And what does it mean for your website? We’ll explain in more detail below. Google and other search engines are always working hard to understand the content on your website. By implementing structured data, you can ensure you give the search engines clear and explicit information, allowing more accurate and descriptive search results for the end user. By doing this, your website visitors may see more rich and interactive results on the search page.   You can see more descriptions of these search results by clicking here – https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/search-gallery Most of the major search engines combined to create a special project Schema.org. The Schema.org website gives more info on how this data is populated and show examples of these ‘schemas’ and how they should be used.

Why does this matter?

Structured Data is an important element of SEO nowadays. Any information you provide to Google in a clear and easy manner, means they gain a better understanding of who you are what your website is about and can only help to increase rankings. At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, allowing you to take advantage of structured data best practices. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/ Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon Google+ icon

Importance of Google Reviews for SEO

Whether it’s from word of mouth or testimonials reviews have always been an integral part of a business’s success. The positive impact of great reviews for a business cannot be underestimated nor can the negative impact of bad reviews. Reviews help potential new customers to decide whether they should choose your business over another, having positive reviews from past clients will instill confidence in them that they will experience the same satisfaction as those before them who left the positive reviews. If your website for instance had no reviews then a customer may feel unsure whether they will receive a good service as they have no past precedent or frame of reference to base their decision off. Having reviews can provide this much needed clarity. While getting reviews from customers has always been an exercise that is beneficial to businesses, the importance of Google Reviews for SEO has never been greater. By having Google reviews you can actively improve the visibility of your business on Google so this means that Google reviews are good for your SEO. The reason Google reviews have become so important for SEO is that when people use the Google search engine Google will aim to generate the most relevant and beneficial results for local web searches as the quality and quantity of reviews on Google is one of the most important ranking factors for local SEO. Google looks to see how many reviews your business has and what your current average rating is and from here they will determine where exactly in the listings of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) you should appear. Google themselves have even stated in the past that the “highest-rated” businesses near you will be returned when you search with local intent. By having your listing appear high with a great rating and a lot of reviews potential customers will be a lot more likely to click on to your website over your competitors and you will be a lot more likely to get conversions from these people. A great part of any SEO strategy is to ensure that you can regularly get customers to give your business a review. The best way to encourage people to give your business a review is to ensure the following:
  • Great Customer Service
By offering all customers a great customer service they will be happy and happy customers are a lot more susceptible to give you a positive review and share their good experience.
  • Simple Review Process
As well as ensuring that the customer service you offer is great, the second thing you should do to encourage reviews is to make the actual process of leaving you a review simple, straightforward and easy. The easier the process is the more likely people will be to take a second and give you a review. Don’t make the customer work for it! 2Cubed provide award-winning web design and mobile app development services. If you would like to give 2Cubed Web Design a review please click the link below: CLICK HERE TO GIVE REVIEW For advice and information on having a successful website contact 2Cubed today! Please feel free to follow and interact with us on the following profiles. facebook icon twitter icon linkedin icon Instagram icon