Apps vs Websites: What you need to know!

It can be confusing for a company to know what type of solution and functionality they need for their project. This can lead companies to choose the wrong option for them because they are unaware of the advantages and disadvantages of each choice. It’s important to know when making the decision between a web-based system and an app to correctly ascertain options so as to deploy the best solution. To see more of what we do, take a look at our website.

Meet two of our developers John & Adam. They are going to take you through a few details you need to know.

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John prefers a traditional website because it is easy for people to access, cost-effective to build, easily updated through CMS and will work on most platforms irrespective of operating system. This is a big plus for the web system as development costs and your budget can be kept down.

Adam enjoys developing apps as it gives him the ability to utilize the devices built-in features to give a more robust and effective solution to your project. While effectively being able to operate both online and offline, especially useful if you need to complete a task in an area where the internet is not available – something he would say is a major advantage over the web-based solution.

Does your project have a very specific purpose or operating requirements? Apps can fit this requirement perfectly, allowing the user access to native inbuilt features such as the camera or GPS and maintaining services whilst offline. An app will allow you to always keep up efficiency and productivity of the users.

If you’re planning a commercial project such as an e-commerce store with lots of products and options, a web solution is potentially a much better option, easily found via search engines and shareable on social media platforms. Not forgetting Search Engine Optimisation and Analytics to help track traffic flow to your site.

With a bespoke Content Management Systems (CMS) we can allow you to make your own edits and updates to content without a developer getting involved. This means that small updates are easily done by anyone with admin access. Enabling your website or app’s content stay up to date. Ideally you should look to refresh your website fully every 2-3 years to keep it up to date with the latest browsers and stop it falling behind your competitors, apps, on the other hand, require smaller interim updates more regularly due to updates to the operating systems (OS) of the device that the app runs on.

Making sure a website displays correctly over popular browsers is standard before launching the website. However developing your app to work with Apple, Android and Windows can take more work, but not always, some apps can be built from a single code base thus speeding up the process. Launching an app for one platform and then a second often creates a second opportunity to market the app!

Talk to us about websites!

Talk to us about Apps!

Email Marketing: Great design, great results

Email Marketing Graphic

Email marketing is one of the best advertising avenues and generates the highest ROI in comparison to other marketing options. Despite the success it offers, it is all too easy to fall into an email marketing rut, stick to the same templates and send out similar content to the same subscribers. Sometimes it’s best to press refresh on your design and content ideas.

That’s what some of our clients have done. Up until recently our Clients had been sending out standard email marketing campaigns, fitting comfortably within branding guidelines, but not peaking too much interest from subscribers. The results they were acquiring were reflective of the kind of campaigns they were sending out. But our Clients wanted better results.

4fx have created a number of email marketing campaigns which really engage with targeted subscribers. Within our most recent series, we wanted to share with you the fantastic results we have gained from a few of our campaigns.
Using engaging design, personalisation, breaking up heavy text passages, using exciting strap lines and keeping key details bright and exciting so that busy subscribers will only need to glance at the campaign to pull out swaying factors. We also tried to avoid stagnant images, steering more towards the people behind the demographics. We have also elected to add small, on brand features on each campaign which fineness the overall branding.

With open rates as high as 50.45%, and click-through rate of 15.74%, comfortably beating the average open rate of 4.19 %, you can see why we wanted to shout about our work!

So, how did we get such great results!?

As mentioned earlier, we revitalised the designs of our campaigns, but that’s not the only key to success. We also sent our campaigns out to more succinct lists of valued subscribers, all of whom were hand-selected as fitting the criteria of our chosen demographic for that campaign.
Not only was our design refreshed and our subscriber list more targeted, we also worked hard on creating well thought out Call To Action’s which managed expectations of the subscriber, allowing the buttons to take the subscriber to refined and specific content.

We know companies are able to produce email marketing in-house, and sometimes that can seem like the option which is most financially viable. But good design and good marketing pays. With higher Open and Click-through rates, we know that given the right brief and a good set of subscribers, success of the email marketing campaigns and in turn the ROI can be positively affected by good design.

If you would like to talk to me some more about our email marketing success, email me: getintouch@4fx.co.uk or call on 01908 375200.

W2GO App

W2GO-App

We have recently launched a fantastic website and app designed to help individuals find great places to go out, through recommendations and suggestions of other users. With its sleek design and easy to navigate user interface it is simple to find new venues in your area. You can also review each and every experience you have at your venue of choice as well as accessing current deals and discounts in your area.

Easily downloadable from the App Store, you’ll be able to find an evening out for everyone with W2GO. Whether it’s a comedy club, theatre, sports bar or health spa, W2GO provides loads of great new venues for you to chose from.

Once you have registered and logged in, you’ll be able to share your favorite spots as well as discount deals with your friends and other users. Easily divided into types of night on both the website and the app, you will never be short of a venue to suit your night.

Voice Assistants and Search Engine Optimization

SEO Twitter

It is clear that the way we use search engines is changing. A rise in freely available voice assistants such as Cortana, Siri and Alexa means it is inevitable that we will become more and more dependent on voice searches. Google has been working diligently to improve it’s user experience, which means that voice searching is becoming more efficient, allowing it to become more popular.

We use a completely different sentence structure when searching via Siri or Alexa. When using a typed language we are more likely to use shorter words and phrases. A sort of Google shorthand. When we use Siri to find something, we are more likely to use a question and use the word ‘my’. This meant that Google has had to become smarter, identifying ‘my’ as the person who is speaking, the question or request itself and the context surrounding it.

One of Google’s improvements allows it to have access to your location so when you search for you’re nearest coffee shop, Google brings up your closest options. To avoid your website not ranking on Google in this way, include a detailed location page on your website, questions about your location on a FAQ’s page and an embedded Google maps on your location page.

Google now retains more personal information about users than ever before. It saves regular locations, i.e. your doctors, your work, hairdressers and home. In order to benefit from this, businesses need to make sure they become regular locations. Using social media ‘check in’s’ at your locations and making sure your locations page is up to date is a good start.

Google can link previous searches with current searches. If you are already showing your friend a Wikipedia page of Charlotte Church and you ask Alexa “Show me pictures of ‘Charlotte’”. Google can use your previous searches to determine which ‘Charlotte’ you are talking about.

The language used to search for our questions is constantly changing so the words and phrases in our strategy for typed searches are now at risk of becoming out of date. If we consider a few simple points we are able to make our SEO strategy voice search ready:

  • Add a more conversational tone to our websites, doing this allows the conversational tone to match up with the voice of your searchers.
  • Cater for both typed and vocal searches. Someone who types a question may be ready to do a little research on your businesses someone who voice searches may be after short, quick and easy answers, provide both types of answer. So that your website will come up no matter of the type of search being used.
  • Make sure your website is easily readable by Google, especially directions to locations are readable by search engines, this is one of the most common voice request searches.
  • Make sure your FAQ’s page includes ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘why’, ‘where’, ‘when’ and ‘how’ as these are extremely common in a voice search.Businesses work hard to create a pro-active SEO strategies, that will enhance their companies ranking on Google. By ensuring that your SEO strategy is voice search ready your SEO strategy will remain current for longer.

Email Marketing Hits The Spot

Email Marketing Mockup Twitter & FBTalking about email marketing is one of our favourite things to do! Part of the reason we love to talk about it so much is because we sent around 300 email marketing campaigns in 2016. Email Marketing is by far one of the most popular advertising methods and usually most consistent when it comes to bringing a return.

We’ve had loads of exciting campaigns over the last few months, including MRN’s email that had a pre-filled out RSVP email to an event invitation, loads of seasonal emails, Christmas, spring and summer newsletters. Email marketing is not only a great way to drive sales; it’s also excellent to strengthen customer loyalty.

Sending campaigns with us means you get not only get great subscriber tracking breakdowns but your eshot looks good and is designed to reach your target market. Having opens, clicks, bounce rates and unsubscribe information right at your fingertips live and real time means you are able to get a thorough insight into the success of your campaign.

Using this information allows businesses to generate influential campaigns time and time again. Understand what the subscribers like to read about, how many images they like per campaign, how many links per campaign, which link out of all of them in the campaign are they most likely to click. All this information enables the businesses to study their subscribers and send the most successful campaign to get a greater return on investment.

Our campaigns have been extremely successful proving that good data, good design and a well thought out campaign brings good results. If you want to talk to us about how to get the most out of your marketing strategy by using us to create great email marketing campaigns, why not get in touch, to find out all about our exciting alternatives to basic campaigns?

Have you seen the latest wearable technology brought to you by Google and Levi’s?

Google is teaming up with Levi’s this year to work on Project Jacquard, which uses ‘Smart Fabric’. The denim jacket will connect to your smart phone at times that you are unable to hold your phone.

After multiple tests the project has created conductive yarns, which combine metallic alloys with natural and synthetic fibers making the yarns safe to be woven on any industrial loom. The alloy yarns look like any other type of fabric, which means they can be woven into almost any garment.

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Image by Google & Levi’s 

After the difficulty Google had with the ‘Google Glass’ Google has sought help with reputable fashion retailer Levi’s. Google says that the amalgamation of these two companies shows that the concept of their smart fabric can be applied to any garment from high end to freely accessible fashion. Something wearable technology has yet to fully accomplish.

Most of the jacket design remains a classic denim jacket, ­only the cuff is integrated with the digital functionality. This means the garment is almost fully machine washable, as long as you take off the removable smart tag.

The smart tag houses all the necessary electronics; it completes the circuit if you will. In terms of ascetics, it is reasonably un-offensive. Relatively small, the smart tag fits onto the jacket cuff with the bulk of it being about the size of a large button.

Here at 4fx we think this is really interesting, and we are always excited to see new developments within the world of technology, design and coding.

For more details and updates follow Project Jacquard here: https://atap.google.com/jacquard/

New Website With An Impact!

What’s more important than having a website? A well designed and well built website! Which is exactly what we did when we recently undertook the project of designing and building a new website for Janet Randle Recruitment.

Janet has experience of nearly 30 years working in executive support and from this she has built a company that delivers first class PA’s and Executive Assistants.

Having never had never had a website designed or built before, she wanted her big break to make an impact – which is exactly what we did! Our Design team worked along side Janet throughout ensuring all key features and elements were the exact way she envisioned.

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The new website includes:

– Content Management System
– Easy Navigation
– User Friendly
– Mobile/Tablet Responsive
– Upload CV Area
– Video

Janet herself is very pleased with her website and has had great feedback!

Take a look at the website here: www.janet-randle-recruitment.co.uk

Santa Paws Is Coming To Town

indiana-picThis year we’ve decided to spread our festive cheer a little differently, we’re sponsoring Indiana the puppy from Hearing Dogs for Deaf People! 

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People transform the life of deaf people and help reduce a deaf person’s isolation and loneliness. Indiana is a gorgeous Cocker Spaniel who will be trained to become a life-changing hearing dog.

We’re very excited to hear about Indiana’s progress so keep an eye out for updates!

Find out more about our chosen charity here

Want More From Your Social Media?

Social media has a HUGE part to play in the
online presence of any business.

It’s a fantastic way to connect with a worldwide audience meaning it’s vital to have a structured social media plan in place to maximise your business’s potential. 

So, whether you are completely new to social media or been around a few years and need a little boost, we can help!

Taming social media and making it work effectively for a business is an increasingly time consuming and specialist job.

Are you struggling with the demands of Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram? Why not let 4FX become your social media manager?

Starting at only £50 + VAT per month*

we can help you with our Super Saver Social Media Package for the following social media outlets; Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram.

OUR POPULAR SUPER SAVER SOCIAL MEDIA
PACKAGE INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:Social Media Services

 

Case Study – MRN

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It’s estimated over 100 billion emails are sent and received each day, and for businesses it can be one of the most cost effective ways of engaging and captivating the required audience. Whether it’s to inform current clients of a new product launch or to pitch services to new potential customers, email marketing can be beneficial to any business.

We’ve been working with Medical Research Network (MRN) for over 6 years now covering a wide range of services including website design and build, a fantastic array of design items for both web and print, search engine optimisation and bi weekly email marketing.

The MRN specialises in the conduct of clinical trial visits in the patient’s home and supporting clinical trial sites with nursing resources – so not quite your average product based email! As the majority of campaigns we send carry quite a serious tone and are particularly niche subjects, including ‘How Clinical Trials Affect Parents’ and ‘Home Healthcare – The evolving concept of healthcare provision’, it’s important to maintain this informative tone but also encourage potential leads.

Over time we have worked with the MRN team to create an email marketing style that is informative AND engaging for their readers.

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Our specially designed email marketing packages contain creative and captivating designs, thoughtful layout and build as well as list management, spam testing, delivery and online reviewing of sent campaigns.

Our team works with you to ensure you have a completely unique and professionally designed responsive eshot that can reach as many of your contacts as possible, on mobiles, pads and PCs.

To see more of our email marketing campaigns take a look at the portfolio on our website!