Author Archives: admin

Why your website urgently needs an SSL Certificate now!

Category: News
July 16, 2018

Does your website have an SSL Certificate? If the answer to this question is no then the success of your website is at serious risk! Google will flag your website from next month (August 2018) if you have not gotten an SSL Certificate. At the start of 2018 Google announced in its Speed Update set to roll out in July, that it will mark all sites that have not migrated to HTTPS as “not secure.”

This change has been brought in by google whose main goal is to ensure their users can safely and securely browse and purchase on the internet. As nowadays people turn to the internet for virtually everything ensuring that users can trust it to be safe is of paramount importance. Online security like having an SSL Certificate is no longer just a good option for a website to have, it’s a necessity.

An SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. If you don’t have the SSL certificate, a secure connection cannot be established, that means, your company information will not be digitally connected to a cryptographic key.

When google made this announcement they made it clear and sent a stark warning that if your website does not have an SSL Certificate your website will be marked as not secure in the url bar when people access it. This will of course have a detrimental effect on any website who is branded as such as virtually no user will proceed onto the site as they have lost all trust and they certainly will not buy anything in fear of their card details being used and abused.

Websites that have any kind of text input will need an SSL Certificate, If you are unsure whether your website needs an SSL Certificate (Chances are it does) just ask yourself the following two questions:

Does your website have forms or functions that require text to be inputted such as: Contact forms, Search Bars, Logins etc..?

Is your website on HTTP://?

If your answer to these questions is a resounding yes then you need to install an SSL Certificate. If you don’t implement SSL soon, your visitors will see a “Not Secure” warning on visiting your site which will damage your sites reputation irrevocably and will also cause your business to suffer.

To inquire about getting an SSL Certificate for your website to stop it being marked as non-secure please get in touch today!

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Content may be King, but Marketing is the Queen

Category: Tips and Tricks
July 3, 2018

A common saying in SEO circles is “Content is king, but marketing is queen, and runs the household.” Just like any good couple one can’t survive without the other and both help each other to succeed. Without marketing your content no matter how good it may be will never be noticed. Likewise if you don’t have enough good quality content then what are you going to advertise and promote in your marketing? Content and Marketing are both equally as important as each other. It’s vital that anyone wishing to be successful makes sure that great content is paired with a great marketing strategy, never sacrifice or prioritize one over the other, both are equally important and should always be treated with this respect.

Great content is king as people want to see something new that catches their attention when browsing the internet, Writing content in your own words with your own ideas ensures that your content is different and unique to you and this will be appreciated by users and the search engine itself when it comes to ranking. Also with great content you are more likely to get new and returning visitors to your site.

While you’re producing great content be sure to optimize it efficiently so that it will see a jump in the rankings on the SERP (Search Engine Results Page), when optimizing it make sure that your priority is that it reads well for users and gives them a great user experience, this is key. I can’t stress enough to not make the mistake of trying to over optimize your page just for search engines and not have the user experience in mind, this can be called trying to use blackhat methods and it will not work, in fact it will have an adverse effect on your ranking and your content will suffer, do not abuse the system with things such as keyword stuffing etc…

Marketing is queen because in today’s market you need both marketing and content working efficiently to be successful. While it’s of course great to have dozens of great quality well written articles, it isn’t enough in itself to rank highly, there is still another step required, which is of course the queen: Marketing.

Some great marketing techniques that can be used are as follows:

  • Writing articles on blogs and making sure to link to your other content

  • Be active on social media because you can funnel a huge amount of traffic from social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+ and Google My Business.

  • Have back-links and anchor text throughout your site to encourage further navigation and increase average session duration

In this article we established the power couple that is the king of content and queen of marketing and how both are as equally important and provide the most success when both are utilized successfully. Just like a game of chess, the king and queen are the most important parts, while you won’t win the game in your first, second or third move, if you use both effectively and make the right strategic moves and be patient your chance will come and you will see positive results, every game starts with the first move, make sure yours is the right one!

To find out the right move and strategy to take when it comes to content and/or marketing please contact 2Cubed today!

2Cubed work with clients on a monthly basis, content writing/management and marketing are two of the many services we offer. To improve SEO ranking through effective marketing and have produced excellent results for many businesses, we help clients to get them to number one for their specific keywords. To help provide the best SEO service, 2Cubed also has an in-house web content writer who will work with you to customize and optimize your content, making it fit your brand identity and corporate voice, as well as maximizing impact on search engines. We will ensure that your content is unique and tailored for search engines so that your website has the best possible chance of reaching and expanding your audience. We provide reports and strategic plans assessing search result performance, working diligently to improve your company’s search engine optimization so that it continues to climb Google rankings on a regular basis.

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Local SEO

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 29, 2018

Local SEO is an element of SEO which differs quite a lot to the standard SEO process people think of. Local search results also change more rapidly than any other type. National, international etc…

Before you start your targeting your local SEO campaign there is some prep work you should make sure you have done, by having this done beforehand it will maximise your chances for success and getting the best results possible so you will rank high within the local listings.

There are six things in particular that you should have done before launching your local SEO campaign and they are the following:

Have a working Google My Business Page Set Up

It’s important that in order to have a strong presence on google that you have set up your Google My Business page. Once you have set it up, you should make sure it includes the following elements:

  • A long, unique description that’s formatted correctly and includes links.
  • Choose the correct and appropriate categories for your business.
  • Upload as many photos as possible onto your google my business page of your business
  • Add a local phone number
  • Add your business address that’s consistent with that on your website and local directories.
  • Upload a high-resolution profile image and cover photo.
  • Add your opening times/days
  • Have real reviews from customers

Optimize all of your landing pages with local keyword data

Your landing page is the most important page on your website as it is the first impression a user gets of your website. You should make sure this page is optimized with the correct keywords. A good idea is to incorporate the page with some particular keywords which you think users will use to search with.

Ensure your NAP listings remain consistently across the web

NAP stands for Name, Address, and Phone Number. NAP is critical for businesses wishing to rank well in the local organic search results, because search engines like Google take the data into account when determining which companies to show for their searches. This becomes even more important for Local SEO. You need to ensure that you have your full NAP across your whole website (i.e. every page). Furthermore, you must use the exact same details/format when you mention your address on other websites (i.e. local citations). You should also use Schema.org markup on your NAP to give the search engines all they need to display your company information properly.

Generate genuine reviews from your customers on Google and Yelp

Local reviews will have a direct impact on your local search rankings, it’s pivotal that you try and gain as many real genuine ones as possible so you’ll want to spend some time acquiring them. Whilst there are many types of reviews from different platforms for now I would advise to focus on getting as many google reviews as possible.

Optimize your search engine snippets

Google Featured Snippets are very search friendly and they help users to get answers without having to click any pages. By making sure to optimize your search engine snippets you will increase your chances further for ranking as high as possible in the search rankings.

Focus on localized link building

When you are doing a local SEO campaign it is extremely important that you have done effective link building. Unlike traditional national SEO, Local SEO places a lot more importance on gaining links from other local websites that are relevant to your business and industry. National SEO places a greater importance on gaining as many links as possible from high authority websites and whilst of course that is still something to aim for, with Local SEO the links from websites local to you are what is the most important!

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Website Security | Give Your Site A Health Check

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 28, 2018

Everyday Websites are compromised, the majority of these security breaches are usually an attempt to use your server for things such as an email relay for spam emails, or to setup a temporary web server which would be used to serve files of an illegal nature. However depending on your website sometimes these breaches can be of an even more serious and dark nature such as hackers attempting to steal your data and/or to actually deface your entire website.

There will always be hackers unfortunately, that fact is out of your website’s control, what you can control however is your website’s security. Think of website security as the health of your site, when your website security is strong your site is in good health, when your website has poor or no security your site is in bad health, and just like human’s, when you are feeling weak, it’s harder to protect yourself from dangers. Hackers thrive on sites who are in weak health and vulnerable.

So how do I make sure my website is in good health? Well just like visiting the doctor for a check up your should get into the habit of regularly giving your site a health check to see how it’s performing. Two ways in particular of increasing your website security and keeping it in good health are switching to HTTPS and having a Website Security Seal.

A great way to protect your site is to make sure you switch to HTTPS hosting, to do this you will have to acquire an SSL certificate. Normally websites are hosted on just HTTP, this is a problem because HTTP is not secure and so hackers can ‘listen’ in on any data that is being passed between your site and a visitors browser. This data could be of a severely sensitive nature such as card details or login credentials such as username, passwords etc..

HTTPS however is stronger over HTTP as it is secure and has an encrypted connection between your website and a user’s browser. This encrypted connection makes it so that any data that may be passed can not be intercepted or “listened” on by hackers. Another reason why your site needs to have HTTPS is that it’s not only just good for security but google have actually made it clear that HTTPS is a ranking factor in their algorithm. Google favours websites who use HTTPS over HTTP.

Switching to HTTPS is simply the logical move, not only does it give your site more security, but it will also improve your rankings on the SERP as google favours sites who use it. To get your site to switch to HTTPS you will need to have an SSL Certificate. To inquire about getting an SSL certificate for your site get in touch with us today!

As well as switching to HTTPS another way of drastically improving your website security is by having a Website Security Seal. A Website Security Seal is a security feature that monitors your website and it looks for things such as malware in particular. Malware is viruses which have been uploaded by hackers. Think of a website security seal as being like anti-virus for your website. As a user you wouldn’t surf the web without having an anti-virus installed so why would you want to expose your website to potential threats.The seal constantly works in the background and monitors your files and if it comes across malware it will notify you so that you can remove it and keep your site safe.

Having your hosting, website security and maintenance looked after by a professional company is simply the smart decision, it will not only give you peace and mind that your site is being looked after by experts but you will also now be able to focus your time on your business and your customers. Also by having a maintenance agreement in place you won’t have to continually pay each and every time you need an update done, you can rest easy in the knowledge that it will be automatically covered by your agreement, it will save you money in the long run compared to having to go it by yourself.

Once you think you have done all you can in relation to improving your security then it’s time to actually test your website security and give your site a health check.The most effective way of doing this is via the use of some website security tools, often referred to as penetration testing or pen testing for short.

For more information about increasing your website security and making sure it’s in good health contact us today!

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The Importance of Google AMP

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 22, 2018


AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages, it is a Google-backed project designed for any publisher to have pages load quickly on mobile devices. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is designed to enable publishers to easily improve speed and by extension the user experience for their mobile users. Pages who make use of AMP coding actually appear within special places in the search results and with a special “AMP” designation.

Before AMP was introduced similar results were possible to achieve but it could only be done by experienced developers through quite specialized performance optimizations and it required a lot of time and was often simply not done as people found it too arduous and/or lack of resources played a factor. The great thing about AMP is that it allows businesses to now do these optimizations quite easily by themselves in quite a quick time.

By optimizing your site with AMP you are being proactive and putting yourself in a great position because chances are it’s going to become more and more popular in the future and google themselves are encouraging the use of AMP and are likely to favour pages with AMP when it comes to the search engine listings.

When using AMP there are some important considerations to make such as you will have to maintain at least two versions of any article page or post. One version will be the original version of your page or post that users will typically see, and then their will also be the AMP version of that page.

Also AMP doesn’t allow things such as form elements so you most likely won’t be able to have elements such as lead forms, on-page comments and other more common elements you may be used to incorporating on your standard page when optimizing them.

However despite this, one thing that can’t be denied about AMP is that it truly does provide quite an easy, fast and efficient way of improving your site speed on mobile devices and considering we live in a mobile first indexing world that is more important now than ever.

For more advice and information on having a successful website get in touch with 2Cubed today!

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MOBILE FIRST WEB DESIGN

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 20, 2018

Mobile first web design is exactly what it sounds like, it is the practice of designing first and foremost for the smallest screen compatibility possible and then working your way up from mobile to desktop etc..

The idea behind this practice is that by taking this approach you have designed your website to be a responsive and very adaptive design. This is because you would have taken the approach that is called ‘progressive enhancement’. Progressive enhancement is the strategy that since mobile design is generally the most difficult to do that you should actually do it first and then when you have to design for other devices you will find it a much easier process. The great thing about this approach is that since you have made mobile first web design a priority and since smaller designs will have only essential features you have at the core already the heart of the user experience you’re offering.

The opposite approach of progressive enhancement is called ‘graceful degradation’. This would be considered a more old-fashioned practice. Graceful degradation entails building a website that incorporates everything from the start and then starts to strip away parts at a later stage for compatibility on smaller devices. The bad thing about graceful degradation is that it treats mobile compatibility as an afterthought or almost a nuisance and you are cutting down on the quality for the mobile version so you nearly end up with two different websites. The one on desktop is a proper effective one whereas the mobile version ends up looking like a pale shadow of the former.

Google now actually indexes sites on a mobile first approach which means they are first ranking your site on how responsive and how well designed it is for mobile, so you can understand if you took the graceful degradation approach you have already shot yourself in the foot as your website will not rank as well as google will judge it poorly even though your desktop site might very well be perfect. We of course then like everyone else recommend that you always take the progressive enhancement mobile-first approach and make mobile a priority not an afterthought otherwise you will live to regret it.

When your site looks great on a mobile device, it will translate brilliantly to all other devices. Also when you design for mobile first it’s limitations are forcing you to cut to the heart of things and really prioritize your content. This is unintentionally helping you to make your website better and deliver the ultimate user experience as since you are designing under such tight parameters your site will be very content-focused which in turn means its user-focused. Google will look on you very favorably if you’re offering the user a great experience and you are because you have been forced to cut to the heart of things, and that’s what the user wants, not to be distracted with all the bells and whistles but access straight away to the content they were searching for!

What first seemed like a hindrance is actually an unlikely but extremely helpful ally, design your website with a mobile first approach and you have taken the first step to having a successful website, on all devices!

For more advice and information on having a successful website get in touch with 2Cubed today!

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Is your website struggling to convert? – Here’s 4 possible reasons why and what you can do about it!

Category: Tips and Tricks
June 19, 2018

The best way to measure how successful your site is to look at your conversion rate.

At the end of the day this is the most important statistic you have at your disposal when trying to decide if your site is a success..

Whilst it’s true that having as much traffic as possible is of course important, ultimately if you are not converting this traffic then what is the point?

The bottom-line is that the only traffic which truly matters are those who actually purchase your product or service, all other traffic is practically considered useless to helping your businesses profits and success as they have not been converted to spend money.

It’s vital that to judge success that you know and are aware of your traffic and conversion rates, the best way to measure this is to use a program like google analytics.

Generally a good conversion rate by industry standards would be considered between 2% – 3% . This rate can fluctuate depending on the value of the product or service being purchased. (e.g. you’d have more difficulty converting customers if you’re selling products or services that are very expensive compared to ones which are very cheap).

If you see that you have been getting a lot of traffic but the majority of it is not being converted then there may be a few particular reasons at play. Here are four common ones which could be causing this:

Your site speed is slow

If your site speed is slow people will get frustrated and leave, obviously since they have left they are lost and can no longer be converted. Also since they have had a bad user experience the chances of them coming back to visit are slim to none, this can be detrimental to your site as it’s very hard to ever recover these lost possible conversions. It’s vital that your site is fast and makes a positive first impression!

Some of the many issues that can cause your site to be slow are things such as:

  • Not being optimized for mobile
  • Broken links
  • Not optimizing your images
  • Poor or messy code
  • Not enabling the caching capability on the site

The biggest factor in many people’s opinion which causes slow speed is actually having poor hosting. To view our own excellent hosting packages please contact 2Cubed here.

Not using Call to Action effectively or at all

You have to make it as easy as possible for customers to purchase your product/service, they should never have to go searching to get to the stage where they can purchase which would make them a conversion for you.

Your calls to action need to be clear, easy to see and enticing to get the customer to click. Always make sure your users have at their disposal access to all the info they need before they make a decision to purchase, if they have to search for this content you will have users who drop out and you will miss out on possible conversions you otherwise could have had.

Where necessary you should make sure that there are relevant calls to action available on your most important pages on the site. Make sure to give these calls to action a prominent position on the page so that they stick out to the user.

Bottom-line is simple just make sure it is very easy for the user to convert when they are ready and willing to.

Poor Mobile Experience

As you should already be aware the use of mobiles to view sites is increasing each year. So it is absolutely imperative that your website is mobile friendly! If it’s not you have severely hampered your chances of success and in turn decreased your conversion rate and honestly you may not recover from it unless you rectify the issue, it’s simply that important and as our reliance on mobile technology increases this is only going to become more and more important in the future.

You must make sure your website has been designed specifically for mobile compatibility and not just that it is simply responsive.

A few key things that can be done to make sure your website is designed for mobile are things such as:

  • Using large and easily legible text
  • Using concise and short paragraphs
  • Making sure that every key feature is just a tap away
  • Having just a single call-to-action on pages

Make sure to regularly review your site’s mobile compatibility especially as you add new content to the site.

User experience is frustrating

Another vital issue that can be causing you not to capitalize on conversion opportunities is that you are offering the users who visit your site a poor of frustrating user experience. The best way to find out what is making your user experience frustrating is by asking the users themselves, note feedback and complaints! A few common annoyances that can contribute to a poor user experience are thing such as:

  • Navigation is a chore
  • Too many ads/pop-ups
  • Your site simply doesn’t look good (UX Design is poor)
  • Your site does not give the users the information they need

These issues can be fixed easily and it is important that they are.

When using analytics you should always pay close attention to your bounce rate. This is a key indicator of how good or bad your user experience is. If it is high, then you know there is something that is not appealing to users and needs to be fixed, if its low it means users are generally happy with your site as they are spending time on it.

There are many different possible reasons why your site may not be converting but those mentioned in this article are issues that would apply to all.

By making these changes if you haven’t already you should see a big difference and improvement in your conversion rates and your sites success.

For more advice and information on having a successful website get in touch with 2Cubed today!

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Web design Wexford

Our Design – Your Vision.

Category: Projects
June 6, 2018

At 2Cubed we specialize in delivering functional websites that exceed clients’ expectations and performance. We strive to use the very best industry practices provided by our in house web designers.

We believe that it’s ‘Your Web Strategy’ and we are here to deliver and guide you to achieving the very best website possible. Our creative web designers are always ready to design, code & market your project.

Whether you wish to improve or replace an existing site, or create one from scratch that will be everything you ever dreamed of, 2Cubed are here to make it a reality.

For further details and to ask any questions or queries you may have you can reach us through our contact page and we would be delighted to speak with you!

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GDPR is Here – What Now?

Category: News
May 28, 2018


Unless you were living under a rock it was hard to ignore anything and everything
GDPR Compliance related last week. Whether it was the constant inflow of “privacy policy updates” to your inbox or panicking over trying to make your own website compliant by the 25th, chances are the majority of your time during the week was taken up with GDPR related issues.

As you may be aware the 25th of May was the introduction of the GDPR law and it is these rules that are laid out as part of the regulation that will be enforced in the future. To protect your business from fines for non-compliance it is vital that you make sure you are meeting the standards set out by GDPR.

Whilst every website is unique and will require different changes to be implemented depending on their respective industry, there are a few things that every business must make sure they have done across the board to be in line with GDPR compliance. These are such things as:

Cookie Plugin
Your website must have a notification upon entering the site that alerts users that your site has cookies, the option to view and disable these cookies must be presented to the user to be GDPR compliant.

Privacy Policy
You must have a privacy policy and links to your policy enabled throughout site.

Cookie Policy
You must have a cookie policy and this must be linked to in the aforementioned cookie plugin notification.

Data Statements
Under any forms where user’s are inputting information to you such as contact forms you must have a visible statement below it which outlines what you will be using the data received for.

Terms and Conditions in checkout
If your site has an E-commerce element you must have an opt in box that user’s must tick that says “I have read and understand the terms and conditions” before they input their card details to complete a purchase. It must be mandatory for the box to be ticked to complete the purchase and a link to the terms and conditions should also be available.

These 5 are a few important elements that must be implemented in your quest towards GDPR compliance, it is not however the full exhaustive list. Depending on your website there may be many more changes which need to be made or a select few more may only required.

For a full comprehensive review of your Website by 2Cubed which will outline exactly in our opinion what is required to aid your website towards GDPR compliance please feel free to get in contact with us today!

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GDPR Compliance – Whose Responsibility is it?

Category: News
May 15, 2018

Hello,

This newsletter special will deal with the burning issue that is GDPR compliance. We have done many posts recently in relation to GDPR and have kept you updated with all the latest news regarding it.

While most businesses are aware of the upcoming GDPR regulation there is still a lot of confusion over who is actually responsible. If you aren’t already familiar with the issue, GDPR is a regulation that requires businesses to protect the personal data and privacy of EU citizens for transactions that occur within EU member states and non-compliance can result in fines.

GDPR comes into effect on the 25th May 2018.

It is vital that every business makes sure their site is GDPR compliant by this date.To this end please be aware that it is up to each individual business to ensure that their website is meeting the GDPR requirements in lieu of the aforementioned date. This means that it is each businesses own personal responsibility to ensure their website is GDPR compliant.

If you would like us to review your website and provide you with observations and recommendations that may aid you towards achieving GDPR compliance please feel free to get in touch with us.

You can reach us through our contact page.

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