Tag Archives: Google

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Minimalist Web Design

kartandtinki1_minimalism-wallpaper_07
The Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus defined “The bigger the better” as: how much you value or want something is decided how big it is. But does this really counts for everything in life?

No, definitely not when it comes to web design. Yes, I know there will always be that someone who “knows” better or “thinks” that he knows better.

 

Get rid of needless things

Why would you want to include unnecessary elements and content in your web design? Certain designs can affect the usability of a website so you need to focus on the things that are important to your target market. Keep it simple – decide whether you want to include images etc. but you also need to make sure that you don’t lose the impact that you originally had in mind.

 

Keep colour to the minimum

Bright colours definitely do stand out but black, white or grey can add significance when it comes to minimalism. Choosing the right accent colours is vital but there is always room for any colours of the rainbow. Just be careful when it comes to bright colours – you don’t want your website to look like the exterior walls of the nursery on the corner of the street.

 

White and Grey emphasize

Take your minimalist web design to a larger extent with white spaces. To emphasize some elements over others, it is critical to use white space but try to avoid “empty” spaces. Shades of grey can be used for backgrounds and works beautifully when combined with black, white or other colours.

 

 Make every detail count

When you decide on doing minimalist web design, it is important to realize that all the other details have significance. Borders, spaces, colours, – the overall look – must all come together when there are just a few other elements.

You can still put your individual “stamp” on your website despite the minimalism. It can basically be anything: elegant or sophisticated, modern, fresh or even funky.

 

Typography

This is one element of minimalism where bigger is allowed to be better. Making use of big typography can make a huge impact on a website. It is a popular choice for headers, accents, and to add visual interests.

Circles are also very popular for minimalist websites. It can be used as accents in headings, logos and for navigation.o, next time you are planning a web design, remember you can keep it simple but beautiful.

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Digital Marketing

Don’t want to see it? Just ‘click to exclude’

Google have increasingly been accused of listing lots of websites in their results pages that offer little or no value to people searching for products or information.

These websites often contain very ‘lite’ information, and have been developed purely to rank highly on Google and make the owner some advertising revenue.

Farmer time

Google have responded to these criticisms with an update to their search algorithm called ‘farmer’, which aims to weed out these built-for-ads sites, often called ‘content farms’.

Site Exclusion

To help with this Google are adding a feature called ‘Site Exclusion’. If you – as an individual – see websites that you think should not be ranking highly in the results page, you can add these to your site exclusion list and you will no longer see them.

This is what you’ll see:

The sites that you exclude will only be removed from your personal results pages – everyone else will continue to see them.

You can manage the list of sites that you’ve excluded from within your Google account:

A Ranking factor?

But what’s interesting is that Google may in the future take into account whether a site has been added to thousands of people’s exclusion lists, and use that information to reshape the results for all.

According to Google: “While we’re not currently using the domains people block as a signal in ranking, we’ll look at the data and see whether it would be useful as we continue to evaluate and improve our search results in the future”.

Once you have the site exclusion feature enabled let us know what you think. But please don’t exclude ‘webeden.uk’!

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Archive

The Internet adds £100bn to the UK bottom line

A study by the Boston Consulting group has revealed that the Internet is more than £100bn to the UK economy. Commissioned by Google, the research indicates that the Internet accounts for around 7.2% of the UK’s GDP.

As a sector that makes the Internet the 5th largest in the UK, bigger than construction, transport and utilities.

Around 60% of this £100bn value comes from online shopping, and the price we all pay to connect ourselves – and our websites – to the Internet. The remainder is attributed to spending on IT by the Government, and net exports too.

Not only is this contribution huge, the reports indicate that it is set to grow too, forecast to increase by 10% annually for the next 5 years. The study also showed that the UK is world’s leading nation for e-commerce.

Other top Internet nations include:

• Denmark
• Republic of Korea
• Japan
• Sweden
• Netherlands
• United Kingdom
• Norway
• Finland
• Germany
• Iceland

This economic contribution also involves the generation of around 250,000 jobs.

And what does this show for small business?

Well the good news for WebEden website builders is that those small businesses that actively use the Internet show sales growth that outstrips their reclusive competitors by around four times.

Here’s the comment:

Paul Zwillenberg, partner with BCG commented: “The internet is pervasive in the UK economy today, more so than in most advanced countries.”

“Several industries – including media, travel, insurance and fashion – are being transformed by it.”

Matt Brittin, of Google UK added: “The internet is a central pillar of the UK’s economy.

“The sector has come of age, and with great prospects for further growth the UK internet economy will be vital to the UK’s future prosperity”.

Well then WebEdeners

Give yourself a pat on the back. In part due to your efforts in building and running a website, you’re helping to add to the UK economy and transform it into one that leads the way in online.

Have you seen the benefit from turning to online? What ways has having a website helped your business? Leave us a comment below.

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How to

How to explain ‘this internet thing’ to friends

It’s now twenty years since a chap called Tim Berners-Lee first published his concept of the World Wide Web.

And where are we now? 47 bn web pages, 350 million different websites 500m domain names; a place where one company alone (Google) adds more than 20,000 servers a month to their data centers. We’ve got websites, blogs, photo sites, video, apps, email, Facebook, browsers, clouds, collaboration, open source, cookies… the list goes on. How can you explain all of that to someone who – up to now – has turned their back to the web?

Google have tried to do just that as easy chapter sized chunks in their new guidebook ’20 things I learned’ about browsers and the web, in collaboration with illustrator Christoph Niemann. It’s not just for beginners, but for anyone who wants to ‘better understand the technologies we use every day’.

Google wanted to give the guide the same feel as reading an actual book – holding the cover, flipping a page – and have used some very smart HTML5 programming to come up with it.

Once downloaded the book can be read offline too.

So next time one of your friends says to you “so, I hear you make those web wotsits” you know where to refer them to!

Take a look and let us know what you think.

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Digital Marketing

Google helps you find emergency information

What do you do in an emergency? Ask a passer by for help? Phone 999? Apparently some of us open up Google and search for help… which explains why they’ve just started displaying a combination of special search results for ’emergency’ searches.

The project started off last year by adding results for poison control.

Example of the poison control result in Spain

Following that is the US the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline was added to make it easier for suicidal Googlers to find help.

Example of the suicide prevention result in the U.K.

This proved a real boost for calls to the hotline to Google decided to widen the net. Now 13 countries will see one or more of these results; hotlines that are available nationally 24/7 have been added. The countries are:

Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK.

Google have also added a special search result for more common emergencies.

Example of the emergency number result in France

What do you think of the idea? Have you looked for critical help in times of need? Leave us a comment below.

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Google Products

So what’s new Google?

Any frequent visitor to the WebEden blog knows that we’re big fans of Google. As we discussed last year, Google innovates at a hectic pace, bringing out – and evolving – products at a pace unmatched by other businesses. In the last year alone Google launched 278 fully fledged products or services, each of which would have been a big launch for any other company.

To help keep up with all the new and exciting stuff going on Google have launched a new website called Google New.

They’re using this website to publish news about their latest products and services.

It includes an aggregation of all their blogs and pulls in their latest posts. You can also search Google products, and there’s a product of the day too.

The site also includes a directory every product, advert, developer tools and blogs.

Take a look google.com/newproducts. Or watch a video all about it below.

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Digital Marketing Social Media

Social Search is the future

Last year we brought you news of Google’s plans in Social Search. Take a look at that post to see Google’s Matt Cutts talk all about what it actually is.

Finding out what your friends think

Briefly, Social Search is when results and content posted by people in your social circle are surfaced in the search results page.

For example, lets says you’re searching for an ‘Italian Restaurant in Reading’. It might be that recently a friend of yours has visited an Italian Restaurant in Reading and has made a comment about it on Facebook. Social Search would return a set of results that included the comments made by your friend, since they are relevant to the search results.

All of us are more likely to follow the recommendation of a friend than someone we don’t know, so social search is also about making search more relevant to each one of us.

Facebook and Bing in on the act

Now its the turn of Facebook and Microsoft’s Bing to socialise search. In the US they have just completed a tie up to make search “more social”,

What they plan is that when a user searches for something on Bing or using the web results in Facebook, if any friends have ‘liked’ an item related to that search that person’s image will appear alongside the search results.

Bing has added more depth to its people search too, by making the results based on the user’s Facebook contacts. So when a user searches for an individual, friends or mutual friends get shown higher in the search results.

In a blog post Facebook commented “Everyday most of us make decisions with the input from people we trust and this is a way to bring friends’ recommendations to online search.”

At the moment the change is just in the US – we’re yet to see plans for the UK.

Try it out!

Try switching your settings on Bing to US and trying out social search. Do you think there’s a future in it, something genuinely useful to people? Or is this just another search gimmick? Leave us a comment below.

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Social Media

Facebook is now the most used website

The results are in, the numbers have been counted and verified. And the news? Well don’t hold your breath: according to online measurement firm ComScore, Facebook is where we all hang out. It racks up more time-spent than any other site, including all Google’s sites.

In August we spent 41.1m minutes on Facebook. which is 9.9% of total time online. That compares to 39.8m minutes on Google sites (which of course include YouTube).

Yahoo sites got up to 37.7m minutes of dwell time, which is down 12% on August 2009.

Both Facebook and Google are up massively -the pair received just 5% each in Auust 2009.

Both Google and Facebook have made a big effort to boost user time in the last year. Lots of businesses now use Facebook pages as a key way to interact with customers. It’s also a lot easier to share content on Facebook than a year ago.

Google for its part has broker deals with film studios, record labels, sporting bodies and broadcasters to show more long-form content on YouTube.

So is this a victory for great, engaging websites? Or a poor sign for the diversity of our interests in the web? are you using Facebook and YouTube more than you were a year ago? Leave us a comment below.

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Digital Marketing

Google Realtime now has its own homepage

Last year we brought you news about a new type of search engine results called ‘Real time‘. The whole point of realtime search was to let you search the web for stuff going on right now. This is in contrast to the normal search results, which can show you a list comprised of websites ranging from a couple of weeks to several years old.

Google and Bing stoked their real time arms race by including results for Twitter. We had some fun showing how our Tweets were showing up in live on the Google Results Page.

Getting Twitter Results in the main search results was a bit confusing. For that reason, and perhaps to highlight its commitment to realtime, Google have decided that these results deserve their very own homepage.


Google have also added a raft of tools to help customise the results.

To start with, you can refine the results to focus just on your location or a geographical area you specify. It also has a ‘conversation view’ which lets you follow an actual discussion on a real-time web service such as Twitter. The data is organised from oldest to newest.

Google has added real-time content to its Google Alerts service, so you can now be made aware if a subject appears on Twitter.

Here’s a video explaining how you can get more out of it.

Is realtime any worthwhile? Are you interested in seeing results for the real-time web? Is this just of passing interest or does it offer any practical help to your use of Google? Leave us a comment below.

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