Bing Ads has been fervently working to become a realistic competitor and alternative to AdWords. Recently, they debuted their own location targeting tool, similar to one AdWords trotted out last month.

Just like AdWords, Bing users can now target only those in specific geographic locations or only those visiting specific websites.

So far, Bing has simply been trying to keep up with AdWords innovations, but they obviously are attempting to become a real competitor to Google.

Head over to CMS Wire for the details on the Bing Ads location targeting tool.

I’ve heard this question asked a few times, and it is a pretty fair question. Should I invest my limited resources to a mobile website or an app? The debate is a complicated one.

Mobile optimized websites offer different looks, functionality, and content based on what device is viewing them. Many companies seem to treat mobile websites as “lite” versions of their desktop pages. They have less links, but are still hopefully filled with content.

Mobile applications on the other hand can allow more integrated experiences, offering compatibility with smartphone cameras and information on the phone. They are platform specific, but not necessarily device specific.

The answer to which you should invest in relies on what your needs are. If you aim to deliver steady content to your users, a mobile website is the obvious choice for its ability to be steadily updated. Entertainment businesses on the other hand will likely find applications advantageous because you can control the interface more fully.

Rohit Singhal from Designer Fix has a list of positives and negatives, but a quick look at the trend in your specific market will likely help guide you toward the best choice.


All designers have concepts or designs that have ended up on the cutting room floor. The reasons vary; maybe a client didn’t like the color you chose to work with. But, sometimes, the reasons the design didn’t get chosen is perfectly reasonable.

Maybe you didn’t understand what the client wants. Some clients aren’t looking for a complete overhaul. If a client wants a small area or one aspect of a page changed, don’t let yourself run away with your concept. It is also possible to just go too far technologically. I think every designer has come up with some “masterpiece” only to realize it is not entirely feasible.

There are lots of different reasons a design can not be selected. Issac Pinnock from Made By Many has an article where he pulls out specific examples from his portfolio that never made it to publish. The main reason is usually the same, however. The designs don’t give the client what they wanted.

Understand your client, and ask plenty of questions to make sure you know what they want. That is the secret to making a design that gets chosen.


With every new bit of analysis that comes out, it becomes more and more clear how quickly mobile browsing is becoming a huge source of search traffic. One study shows that up to 25-30% of all paid search traffic now comes from mobile devices. Here we will explore the latest trends in mobile browsing that search marketers should know.

Tablets Have a Much Higher ROI Than Desktops

The cost per click (CPC) of any ad is supposed to be proportional to the return on the investment (ROI). That seems like common marketing logic. However, it seems the web market is not so logical.

Smart phones have a lower cost per click because they do not convert as well as desktops. Because of this, the ROI from smartphones or desktops are about equal. According to Siddharth Shah from Search Engine Land however, the CPC for tablets is currently 30% lower, even though they have a 20% higher conversion rate than desktops. That means the ROI from tablets is actualy 70% more than desktops. This is a huge opening for search marketers.

ROIs Vary Significantly By Mobile Device

Because of different demographics, user experiences, and varying contexts different devices offer, the ROI for different mobile devices vary significantly. For example, the most current data suggests the ROI from iOS users is roughly double that of Android users. When creating marketing campaigns, be specific to what devices you are marketing to, especially designating between tablet and smartphone. Being specific with who you are marketing will allow you to get the highest ROI possible for your market.

Mobile browsing has no sign of stopping as new and cheaper devices are being offered every day for consumers. Nearly everyone now has a smartphone, and tablets are becoming more and more common. The market will only be more important in the future.


On-page optimization goes back to the very beginning of SEO. It has also changed a lot since then. In the old days, on-page SEO was mostly about keyword usage. While you can still use this aspect to create some optimization, it won’t do as much as you would like. This is because on-page SEO has been expanding.

Instead of focusing on keywords, focus on what your users want. You don’t need to repeat keywords your users may be searching for, you just need to have the answers to their questions. The keywords you do use, should be more circled around a theme than they should be trying to exactly match what your users are looking for.

Basically what I’m saying is, if you are still trying to exactly match what your users are looking for, you are as likely to be penalized as you are rewarded. However, if you have content talking about every facit of a topic, users looking for that topic will find you.

It is also important that every bit of information offered on the results page reflect your business and your brand. If the title says the article is about guitars, but the description is about amplifiers – or worse, completely off topic, like kittens – people will be confused and move on.

If you want to see how on-page optimization has gotten here, Almog Ramrajkar has an article on the evolution of the topic. What is important to note is, the old ways are not dead. They still work, but they are no longer all you can do. The few tips I offered here are just the tip of the iceberg to what on-page optimzation offers now.


The tablet market looks like it is getting crowded from a distance, but the data from a new study from mobile publishing platform Onswipe suggests there really is no contest as to what tablet is driving meaningful amounts of web traffic.

According to Onswipe’s study, the iPad is the source of a whopping 98 percent of all tablet based traffic. Now, before the Android lovers begin sharpening their pitchforks, this data is supported by other recent studies as well.

The data also shows that iPad owners spend more time online per session compared to their iPhones, and are more active. Also interesting is the iPad creates more traffic than iPhone and Android devices combined, despite there being hugely more iPhones and Androids out in consumers’ hands.

Slowly, we are beginning to see a trend in mobile browsing, and what is resulting is a very complex picture, despite these seemingly clear-cut findings. Onswipe also found that Kindle Fire users spend more time with their devices than iPad users, however they do not spend as much time online for obvious reasons.

Marketing Land has some graphs to help you visualize the Onswipe’s findings.


I’ve discussed ways to use social media in your job search before. Not surprisingly, the tips for creating a successful social media profile for job seekers are not so different from the tips for small business owners.

Jane Turkewitz has a list of suggestions at iMediaConnection, but I’ll summarize for you here.

Just like a small business owner, job seekers should use Facebook and Twitter to make themselves sound like an expert. Be a part of the conversation and maybe someone will take notice. Also, target the people you want to be in business with, in this case, the people you want to work for and track their social media activity. Chances are, they’ll post something about job openings.

Don’t be desperate and overbearing. Your message gets glossed over if people are bombarded with it and you alienate the people you are trying to reach. Also, make sure you have contact info posted on your profiles so interested parties can easily reach you.

You should always remember that you can’t expect social media to find a job for you. You can’t simply tweet out a link to your resume, then sit back and wait. You have to be proactive, but social media can be a great tool for your arsenal.

Here we are, gathered around again for another article on responsive design. You’ve heard me say why responsive design is great, how easy it is to implement, and the different ways you can approach it. Now I’m going to tell you why you shouldn’t use it.

Okay, not quite, but I am going to focus on the pros and cons of using responsive design. Every design system has its drawbacks, and this is no different. The question, of course, is do the positives outweigh the negatives? And the answer to that is, it depends what resources you have and what your needs are.

The Positives

  1. Low Maintenance – One of the biggest upsides to responsive design is the need to only maintain one website. Every device gets a different layout, but the same content simultaneously. This is important if your website goes through frequent content updates. If you are updating numerous times a day, this makes your work much more streamlined than having to update your desktop page, your mobile page, and maybe even a tablet or middle range page.
  2. Brand Consistency – Having only one webpage to maintain allows you to also keep an incredibly uniform brand representation across your pages. The look and feel of your page, and all of the brand image imbued within it, will remain consistent for all screen sizes, and you won’t have to spend time ensuring similar representations across different versions of your site.
  3. Usability – Responsive design is known for being user friendly, mainly because visitors only have to learn your site once. Their navigational abilities aren’t stunted when they decide to visit your page on another platform, and they get a uniform experience from anywhere.
  4. No redirects – This aspect seems insignificant at first glance, but helps ensure your users always have a positive experience with your site, especially if you are sharing content on social media platforms. Having a uniform URL for all versions of your site means that you can link to content elsewhere with one link, and no longer worry if users will have compatibility issues. Mobile users won’t be directed to the desktop version, and vice-versa.

The Negatives

  1. Development Time – Obviously a responsive website can take more time than a regular page, and require more testing than others. It also takes longer to convert an old website than to create a new one from the ground up. You will still likely spend less time than building multiple versions of one page, but if you outsource your mobile page to a seperate designer, you may actually end up increasing your load by taking on a responsive page.
  2. Different Devices are Still Different – While responsive design allows users to have a more uniform experience than different versions of the same page, there is no way any website will ever work equally well on every platform or device. Different platforms have different needs associated with them, and having only one version of your page actually limits the ways you can tailor your content to their needs. Sabina Idler from Webdesigner Depot uses the scenario of a public transportation website. Desktop users will either be planning trips or looking for deals, with plenty of time to look at options and explore. A mobile user on the other hand, may be relying on the mobile site to get on the correct train at the last second. If you only have one version of the page, you can’t cater to both.
  3. Scalable Images Lose Details – Scaled images lose detail, which strips them of meaning. With responsive design, images and text are scaled by screen size rather than context, so things you want to be big may not be. There are ways to get around this issue, but it still takes time and planning to avoid.
  4. Designing Menus – Desktop pages anymore tend to have fairly complex menus with multiple layers. Trying to design a seperate version of this for a mobile user is hard enough, but designing one menu for both is downright intimidating. The rule to follow is to try to find a balance between easy access to info and unobtrusive design.


If you have the time to invest in responsive design, it is very possible it will benefit you. To know if it will however, you have to take a long look at your business and decide what is needs are. Do you have customers who may have drastically different wants based on what platform they are on? Do you have numerous updates going out every day? Answer these questions, and you will be much closer to knowing what path to take.


New data from ad network Chitika compares click through rates (CTRs) and query lengths on the different desktop and mobile browsers among the millions of impressions on their network. The results show Opera browser users as the highest demographic of click-through’s compared to other browser users.

Generally, Opera users are considered to be more tech savvy, so it is interesting that they would have the highest CTR rate. The second highest demographic are mobile Safari users.

Greg Sterling from Marketing Land has all the data from the report for more information.


Do you ever find yourself wondering how to achieve that perfect design you see in your mind? You can get it. You just need a design brief. If you are a designer or a client, the design brief will be the largest determining factor in deciding the success of a project.

This guide will help you understand the benefits of a design brief as well how to create an effective one.

What is a Design Brief?

A design brief provides your designer wth all of the information needed to reach or exceed your expectations. It should focus on the results and outcomes of the design you would like to achieve. Business objectives and goals are important to make sure your designer knows what to strive for. A design brief however shouldn’t deal with aesthetics. That is the role of the designer.

How To Write an Effective Brief?

Jacob Cass, writer for Just Creative, has a list of great questions that will help you make a great brief. If you can answer the questions I’ve compiled here, you will be 90% done. Don’t try to think of one sentence answers, but think of the questions as jumping off points.

What does your business do? Your designer will not necessarily know anything about your business. Avoid jargon, and address what your company does, as well as its history.

What are your goals? Why are you hoping to achieve those goals? The designer needs to know what you are trying to communicate, as well as your motive to decide how the design should address these issues. Let them know what makes you different from competitors. A good idea is to also provide old promotional materials to give them an idea of your promotion history.

You designer should also be given knowledge of your target audience. What is your target markets demographic? Which audiences are more important than others?

What is your budget? Knowing this will help designers reach benchmarks without wasting time or resources, as well as helping inform what size and specifications you desire.


Give the designer as much information as you can to help inform them. You won’t get what you want, unless you inform them.