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COVID-19 Scams: What You Need To Know

It is disappointing but not surprising to learn that a whole new crop of scams are being unleashed on an unsuspecting and vulnerable public. As criminals develop schemes to take advantage of people’s fears, it is important to share warnings with the people in our lives who may be most at risk for attack. Older friends and family members who are feeling the most susceptible to the virus may also be the ones who will be most susceptible to COVID-19 scams. 

COVID-19 Scammers (more…)

Google Sets HTTPS Deadline

HTTPS DeadlineA deadline set by Google is one you won’t want to miss or forget. Mark your calendars for July 2018, because that is the deadline for when Chrome will begin to warn users if a site is insecure. The most used web browser, Chrome, is taking part in alerting users if websites are or are not secure. You may ask yourself, what difference does it make if a site is HTTP or HTTPS and the difference is big.

If your site is already a secure site then there is nothing for you to worry about. However, if your site is not secure then this is a task you’ll want to make sure gets completed. Chrome will clearly warn users if a site is not secure. Most people will not visit a secure website in fear of data being stolen, computer becoming hacked, etc. Even though your site is more than likely innocent of any internet wrongdoing, it will hurt your site visits and search results.

The entire purpose of a website for your business is to be found and to sell or promote product(s) or brand(s). If Google is penalizing your site in more ways than one and users are afraid to visit your site, then what is the point of your website? Elements of digital marketing have evolved and having a secure site is just one of the new normalities the industry will be facing going forward.

There are a handful paths you can take to make sure your site is secure and it can be a bit overwhelming. Upright Communications can help you diagnose your best method by scheduling a quick 15-minute phone call. Give us a call and let us help you choose your best HTTPS path.

Are All Hosting Environments the Same?

hosting environmentThe short answer is “No”, and the long answer is “Absolutely not”.

The business of web hosting is a cutthroat market where even the smallest details set vendors apart.  To someone not-so-familiar with all the available tech and and/or good knowledge of how the web is served to users, the lingo used is very difficult to understand.  Hopefully this article can shed some light on what to look for when browsing the plans of web hosting providers. (more…)

New Google Q&A Feature – 3 Things Local Businesses Should Do

Google is constantly rolling out new features to make online search more user-friendly, more informative, and more targeted to meet consumer needs. The latest development is a new question and answer feature that is now appearing on Google Maps for Android and mobile search.

How the Google Q&A Feature Works

When consumers use Google Maps or Search to find a product or service, local business listings appear. After clicking on a particular business listing the user will see a summary of information about the business, including location, hours, pictures, reviews, and more. This new listing feature will allow users to scroll down to a Question and Answer section, where they can browse FAQs or ask new questions about the business. (more…)

Upright Communications Earns Google Partner Agency Status

Google PartnerThe Upright team is proud to announce our newly acquired status as a certified Google Partner Agency. Google Partners are specially qualified to provide a variety of Google related services ranging from AdWords account management to website optimization services.

Extensive training is required to become a Google Partner Agency. As a Google Partner Agency, we are positioned to enhance and empower your online marketing program through our expertise in leveraging the many Google platforms, including Google Search, Google Analytics, Google AdWords, You Tube, and more. Google Partner Agencies have the advantage of access to the most current Google data acquired from a breadth of industries involved with Google search and digital advertising. (more…)

Who is Fred? About Google’s Latest Algorithm Update

FredAn unconfirmed Google algorithm update known as “Fred” began making its presence known on March 9th. This latest ranking update is reported to have impacted site rankings in a variety of ways.  As with the many other Google algorithm changes you hear about, Fred may have you wondering how your site may have been impacted and what you need to do.

The Fred update seems to be targeting the quality of links on a given website. These include the relevant online channels that link to the website – examples can include Yelp, Google+, LinkedIn, and more. Over time, a website will naturally acquire links, but the process of link building can also be assisted by services like MozLocal, which submit a website to a variety of online directories concurrently. Links are important in establishing your credibility with Google, which will result in Google showing your website more prominently and consistently in searches for your products and services. (more…)

Penguin 4.0 has arrived at Google, and it’s all grown up!

penguin updateThe last update to Google’s Penguin update was Version 3.0, which landed back in 2014.  Last time Google said penguin would affect less than 1% of US/UK searches.  With that being the case, then Penguin has definitely grown up in 4.0.  Google announced the new version on September 23rd, 2016, stating that Penguin is now part of their core algorithm. (more…)

Cyber Security for Small Business

Do you have a password that is easy to remember but you think is creative enough that it won’t get cracked? Think again. Small business owners have a lot of passwords to keep track of and we encourage you to choose a password that is creative and easy to guess. Hackers are getting more and more creative these days with logging into accounts to steal information and it’s our job as a small business owner to protect our databases.

If you have a lot of passwords to keep track of then consider writing them all down at your desk, storing them in an e-mail or on a Google Drive. Of course, there are positives and negatives of storing passwords but if you don’t lose your handy piece of paper and if you change the password to your e-mails and Google Drive every three – four months then you should be fine!

When choosing a password is important to not use a common password that is associated with others account logins. For example, the password to your e-mail, website, virtual banking and industry software shouldn’t all be the same.  Make sure the password is a combination of 12 letters, numbers and lowercase and uppercase letters to ensure maximum online security. (more…)

Google Launches Accelerated Mobile Pages

stopwatchGoogle has launched its latest initiative in moving toward an increasingly mobile-centric internet – Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP). The Google Accelerated Mobile Pages Project, announced last October, is an open source initiative that focuses on dramatically improving the performance of the mobile web.  The objective is to have web pages with rich content such as video, animations and graphics, to load instantaneously alongside smart ads. The AMP HTML platform removes  most elements, such as JavaScript, which cause web pages to load more slowly on mobile. As with any Google development, the question is what Accelerated Mobile Pages mean for online marketers.

AMPProject.org reports that AMP HTML pages load between 15% and 85% faster than non-AMP pages. Unfortunately this speed comes at a cost. According to Search Engine Watch, “by stripping down the experience of using the mobile web, Google is stripping out a lot of the infrastructure advertisers and marketers currently depend on to deliver impactful brand messages to users.” (more…)

What Google Removal of Right Column Ads Means for Organic Search

GoogleUPDATEAs of Friday, February 19th, Google stopped displaying AdWords ads in the right column on search engine results pages (SERPs). Users will now only see pay per click ads on the top and bottom of the page. Going along with the removal of the right column ad strip, reports indicate that there will be more SERPs showing four ads at the top of the page with commercial searches. The question for search engine marketers is how the removal of right column ads will impact their marketing strategies on Google. (more…)