Anna Preston 's Entries

2 blogs
  • 06 Aug 2019
    According to a technical SEO specialist I know, adding images to a website used to be so simple, now you’ve got to worry about conforming to the recommendations of your search engine as well as ensuring your browser allows Google’s recommendation. Once you could just serve your image as a JPG, GIF or PNG and Google wouldn’t bat an eyelid. However, in 2019 things have changed as search engines seem to want images in a “next-gen” format which, according to Google are: “Image formats like JPEG 2000, JPEG XR, and WebP [which] often provide better compression than PNG or JPEG, which means faster downloads and less data consumption” In English this means that traditional image formats such as JPGs, GIFs, and PNGs will now slow down your website. In contrast, “next-gen” formats will speed up your site which is crucial if the SEO services you are employing are to have the fullest effect. So, all you need to di is change the format of your served images to either JPEG 2000s, JPEG XRs, or WebPs. Easy right. Well it’s actually not that simple - some browsers don’t actually support these new formats. Don’t worry though, there is a relatively simple trick to serve images as WebPs (the most supported and popular of the next-gen images) and it requires you to follow two simple steps: Add plugins (if your site is Wordpress) Serve new WebP images Adding Plugins Required to Serve Images in Next-Gen Formats: There are two plugins you’ll need for your Wordpress site: WebP Express ShortPixel (make sure you have an account for this one) The first of these, WebP Express plugin, is essentially a tool that adds some code to your WordPress site that ensures WebP images are properly and fully served in browsers that support WebP images. Additionally, in other browsers where WebP images aren’t supported, this plugin will serve the default image (e.g. JPEG, GIF, or PNG). The other required plugin is ShortPixel which compresses and optimises images using various different tools. You’ll be using the ShortPixel Image Optimisation Plugin. To install both of the plugins simply go to your WordPress website and: Select plugins from the Dashboard menu Select add new Search for the plugin Click Install Click Activate Serving Images in the Next-Gen Format WebP: Unlike WebP Express, the ShortPixel plugin needs some configuration to work. Before we do this, however, you should make sure you have a ShortPixel account. There is a free option as well as a paid option either of which will be acceptable. However, if you can afford to spend a bit more, the paid option will provide a better experience than the free version as you’ll get more support. But don’t feel like you have to spend money. Once logged-in, find your API key from the menu and take a note of it. Now we’ll configure ShortPixel: Under Settings go to ShortPixel Go to General Paste your API key into the correct field Save changes Go to the Advanced tab Check that “Also create WebP versions of the images, for free” is selected Check that “Deliver WebP versions of the images in the front-end” is selected Select the “Only via WordPress hooks” option Save and Go to Bulk Process Your website will now begin bulk processing all of your images. This will usually take three to four hours to finish. Congratulations, you’ve successfully set up the plugins and now your website will run smoothly, efficiently and in accordance with your search engines preferences.
    151 Posted by Anna Preston
  • According to a technical SEO specialist I know, adding images to a website used to be so simple, now you’ve got to worry about conforming to the recommendations of your search engine as well as ensuring your browser allows Google’s recommendation. Once you could just serve your image as a JPG, GIF or PNG and Google wouldn’t bat an eyelid. However, in 2019 things have changed as search engines seem to want images in a “next-gen” format which, according to Google are: “Image formats like JPEG 2000, JPEG XR, and WebP [which] often provide better compression than PNG or JPEG, which means faster downloads and less data consumption” In English this means that traditional image formats such as JPGs, GIFs, and PNGs will now slow down your website. In contrast, “next-gen” formats will speed up your site which is crucial if the SEO services you are employing are to have the fullest effect. So, all you need to di is change the format of your served images to either JPEG 2000s, JPEG XRs, or WebPs. Easy right. Well it’s actually not that simple - some browsers don’t actually support these new formats. Don’t worry though, there is a relatively simple trick to serve images as WebPs (the most supported and popular of the next-gen images) and it requires you to follow two simple steps: Add plugins (if your site is Wordpress) Serve new WebP images Adding Plugins Required to Serve Images in Next-Gen Formats: There are two plugins you’ll need for your Wordpress site: WebP Express ShortPixel (make sure you have an account for this one) The first of these, WebP Express plugin, is essentially a tool that adds some code to your WordPress site that ensures WebP images are properly and fully served in browsers that support WebP images. Additionally, in other browsers where WebP images aren’t supported, this plugin will serve the default image (e.g. JPEG, GIF, or PNG). The other required plugin is ShortPixel which compresses and optimises images using various different tools. You’ll be using the ShortPixel Image Optimisation Plugin. To install both of the plugins simply go to your WordPress website and: Select plugins from the Dashboard menu Select add new Search for the plugin Click Install Click Activate Serving Images in the Next-Gen Format WebP: Unlike WebP Express, the ShortPixel plugin needs some configuration to work. Before we do this, however, you should make sure you have a ShortPixel account. There is a free option as well as a paid option either of which will be acceptable. However, if you can afford to spend a bit more, the paid option will provide a better experience than the free version as you’ll get more support. But don’t feel like you have to spend money. Once logged-in, find your API key from the menu and take a note of it. Now we’ll configure ShortPixel: Under Settings go to ShortPixel Go to General Paste your API key into the correct field Save changes Go to the Advanced tab Check that “Also create WebP versions of the images, for free” is selected Check that “Deliver WebP versions of the images in the front-end” is selected Select the “Only via WordPress hooks” option Save and Go to Bulk Process Your website will now begin bulk processing all of your images. This will usually take three to four hours to finish. Congratulations, you’ve successfully set up the plugins and now your website will run smoothly, efficiently and in accordance with your search engines preferences.
    Aug 06, 2019 151
  • 10 May 2018
    By their very nature sales forecasts can be something of an inaccuracy but there are some things that you can do to make sure that you are forecasting your sales as accurately as possible. As part of a critical management strategy you need to make sure that you have a system of sales forecasting in place as well as robust sales management training. The inexact nature of sales forecasting can make it tricky, but the trick is of course to know which direction things went wrong in and then turn your sales forecasts into an accurate picture of how your business is in fact doing Separate numbers It is widely believed that you should use one set of numbers to show the truth of how your business is doing, but this is a misconception. However, using multiple forecasts is the best way forward and will give you a far more accurate picture. Sales teams benefit from forecasts that are designed to meet a specific number whilst product management are more likely to be interested in a forecast that looks at a specific product. The only time that these different forecasts need to be put together are when someone at the top of the company wants to look at the overall picture. Make time to update Your forecasts are only going to work in your favour if you put the time into working on them, and this means making the time to keep tabs on them. You need to make sure that you set aside regular amounts of time to review your forecasts; this will help you identify any areas of potential issues before they have a major impact on your sales as a whole. Be flexible You can’t use just one single test when it comes to tracking all the information relating to all of your sales. You need to be able to develop a sales process that can adapt and modify itself to your targets as conditions change. In order to do this, you need to make sure that not only do you ensure that your sales forecasts are updated on a regular basis but also that you have a good understanding of all aspects of your sales system including the history of any individual sales person, product delivery and customer history. The more you understand the easier it is to make a better and more accurate assessment of your sales forecasts. Don’t make it too complicated It’s very easy to start adding complex projections and maths to your forecasting but there really is no need and in the long run it isn’t really going to help you to produce a more accurate sales forecast. You need to understand what you are looking at, and you need these figures to be understood by the other employees within your company, so sometimes simple is definitely better. There are specific software programs that can really help you to make your forecasts easier to understand and more accurate, building up a better picture of what is really going on within your business.
    74 Posted by Anna Preston
  • By their very nature sales forecasts can be something of an inaccuracy but there are some things that you can do to make sure that you are forecasting your sales as accurately as possible. As part of a critical management strategy you need to make sure that you have a system of sales forecasting in place as well as robust sales management training. The inexact nature of sales forecasting can make it tricky, but the trick is of course to know which direction things went wrong in and then turn your sales forecasts into an accurate picture of how your business is in fact doing Separate numbers It is widely believed that you should use one set of numbers to show the truth of how your business is doing, but this is a misconception. However, using multiple forecasts is the best way forward and will give you a far more accurate picture. Sales teams benefit from forecasts that are designed to meet a specific number whilst product management are more likely to be interested in a forecast that looks at a specific product. The only time that these different forecasts need to be put together are when someone at the top of the company wants to look at the overall picture. Make time to update Your forecasts are only going to work in your favour if you put the time into working on them, and this means making the time to keep tabs on them. You need to make sure that you set aside regular amounts of time to review your forecasts; this will help you identify any areas of potential issues before they have a major impact on your sales as a whole. Be flexible You can’t use just one single test when it comes to tracking all the information relating to all of your sales. You need to be able to develop a sales process that can adapt and modify itself to your targets as conditions change. In order to do this, you need to make sure that not only do you ensure that your sales forecasts are updated on a regular basis but also that you have a good understanding of all aspects of your sales system including the history of any individual sales person, product delivery and customer history. The more you understand the easier it is to make a better and more accurate assessment of your sales forecasts. Don’t make it too complicated It’s very easy to start adding complex projections and maths to your forecasting but there really is no need and in the long run it isn’t really going to help you to produce a more accurate sales forecast. You need to understand what you are looking at, and you need these figures to be understood by the other employees within your company, so sometimes simple is definitely better. There are specific software programs that can really help you to make your forecasts easier to understand and more accurate, building up a better picture of what is really going on within your business.
    May 10, 2018 74