Superior Web Design Philadelphia | ProStrategix

Bruce Emmerling, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

Philadelphia: Largest Major City You Rarely Hear About

Philadelphia is an amazing city that often gets overshadowed by its noisy neighbors to the north (New York City) and the south (Washington DC). With New York City and Washington taking up the oxygen, Philly can get overlooked. That's a shame because Philadelphia has so much to offer.

Philadelphia is the sixth largest city in the US, and the second largest city on the East Coast. This is right. It is bigger than DC and Boston. Maybe it is part of its Quaker history, but Philly does blare its own horn as much as its sister cities on the coast.

There are 3 million jobs in Philadelphia. Many of which are highly skilled in industries such as medicine, technology, financial services, renewables, and many others. In fact, it's the 6th largest workforce in the nation.

With all this diversity, the marketing challenge most small businesses face is one of awareness.

Why Superior Web Design Matters in Philadelphia?

With so much choice packed into such a small area, the key to success in Philadelphia is standing out and being noticed. A great mobile site can do just that. 

  1. So much of marketing in Philly is about differentiating and owning a niche. You're unique selling proposition. Few people truly take advance of the best marketing tool, their website.
  2. In high mobile-use areas like Philadelphia, you just can't afford a slow site. If you're mobile site takes longer than as second or two, that opportunity is lost.
  3. A great website helps people find what they need quickly. A smart website can serve up different copy for customers who live in Center City to those on the Mainline or in New Jersey.

User Experience (UX): User’s Value Finding Information Fast.

When you ask users what they want, they will tell you. They want information fast. They care about finding information over 7 times more than the care about appearance.

Important factors of web design

Therefore, your design elements should focus on helping the user find pages on your site versus just creating visual impact. Otherwise,  60% of users leave a site if they can’t find what they need easily.

The 1 to 3-Second Rule

If a page takes over 3 seconds to load, mobile users bounce as the Pingdom chart below suggests.

Pingdom Bounce Rate vs. Page Speed

SEMRush gauges page speed using a 1 second rule. I would argue they are closer. My personal experience suggests that the widow has continued to narrow.

Main Drag on Page Speed is Unnecessary Code

If you are not a web designer or web developer, terms like render blocking ccs or unused JavaScript, will be very foreign. Knowing the terms are not as important as understanding the cause

Google Page Insights Illustrating render blocking resources

The root cause of most speed issues is the content management system (CMS) that you choose for your website. 

Themes Will Slow You Down

If your site is built on Wordpress or Wix, you are using a theme. Every theme carries a set of instructions (CSS), which tell the browser how to render the page. Every theme has customization options, drop-down menus, animations, and such.

When a page is rendered, the browser has to sort through all this code to see what your content requires. The unused features can stop the page from rendering, creating render-blocking resources or unused CSS. 

Theme Are Easy But Come at a Cost

A theme is user friendly. They are faster to build, easier to maintain, and simpler to update. You do not need to understand coding or even basic HTML or CSS commands to get great looking results. However, there is a big trade-off, and that is page speed.

Why Local Digital Marketing Matters in Philadelphia?

With so much choice packed into such a small area, the key to success in Philadelphia is standing out and being noticed. Local digital marketing can help you do just that. 

  1. Local digital marketing in Philadelphia is about differentiating and owning a small niche. Then, exploring how you might expand from it.
  2. Digital is important to raise awareness among both Philadelphia residents and those from the suburbs, who commute into the city daily. 
  3. It lets both Philadelphia and nearby towns and regions, such as the Main Line and New Jersey suburbs, etc. know you are nearby, open, and accessible.

Simple Navigation That is Clear and Easy to Follow

To have a navigation that is easy to follow requires that you understand how your user is likely to search for information. It is very important to remember that your user may search for information very differently from you, especially if you are an expert in the field and they are not.

Importance of Page Mapping

To keep the communication focused, each page should be designed to answer a given set of questions around a core theme. Since we know the core theme, we can link these pages to keywords or key phrases. 

The key reasons why it is worth the effort to map pages to key words are:

  1. Helps to minimize confusion as each page has a clear answer or a means to reach that answer quickly.
  2. Helps indicate to the user and the bot what the page is about.

This is a key step in any design and development process.  

Measure & Monitor Your User Flow

People can be difficult to predict. Even with the best planning, sometimes the flow isn’t quite right. User flow on Google Analytics can really help. You can see how users are browsing the site. 

Optimizing

If you find users are acting differently versus how you intended. It’s important to take note and make changes. Web design is never “a set it and forget it” activity. Monthly monitoring and testing are recommended. 

Mobile friendly

A high-quality user experience is important on all devices. This is just the cost of entry these days.

Most themes and common website builders are responsive, which means it adapts the code (html and ccs) to suit the device. 

There are several ways to achieve a responsive design. The main tradeoff between the options is page speed.

We recommend custom sites because they are designed as mobile first. They use only the code that you need, so they are fast. Lastly, the lost revenue from bounces and poor conversions generally more than offset the cost.

All themes will require “fixing”. Without some way to weeding out that excess code, page speed load times will likely cause you to perform poorly on mobile. 

Data show page speed is a key indicator bounce rate. If your page takes over three seconds to load, bounce rates balloon. Any bounce is a lost opportunity to influence your user.

There are plugins and other solutions. But, again, there is a trade-off between cost and performance.

Summary

Your website is the most important communication tool in digital marketing. Therefore, you want it to be its best.

Users value finding information quickly. Finding the information quickly is seven times more important than fancy features.

To help users find the information they want quickly requires a simple navigation that is clear and easy to follow. 

A high-quality user experience is important on all devices. Therefore, you want a design that can meet these demands without sacrificing quality or speed. Both affect your website metrics.

This can be challenging to attempt this on your own, and there are numerous digital marketing companies that can help.

ProStraegix is a web design agency with offices in New York City. We also provide SEO and pay per click advertising support to our clients.

Things to Remember…

If you're thinking about finding help in Philadelphia for your small business, here are some things to keep in mind.

  1. Find a firm that knows your area. If your small business is marketing in Philadelphia, you'll want help from someone who understands how Philadelphia works. The best marketing firms understand the differences among the regions, towns, and cities of Philadelphia
  2. Find a company you can trust. If you can't trust a business to have your best interests, you're already going to be left in the lurch. Make sure you have a guarantee that your business will be treated fairly by all parties.
  3. Get the size of help you need. A larger firm can provide more resources and can do more things. A smaller firm, on the other hand, can feel like a neighbor, with the added benefit of one-on-one help from the best the company can offer.

How to Adapt Our Small Business SEO Tips for Philadelphia

Aside from all the general tips above, here are some specific actions you can take based on the three key elements of local search algorithms:

Proximity 

All of this assumes that you have completed your keyword research and developed your keyword list. If you have not, this section will be more effective once you do. Please see our previous post on digital marketing in Philadelphia and then come back.

Go through your keywords list and select those which are good descriptors of your business. If it were me, I would use something like “digital marketing agency”, “seo services”, for example. Then make a list of the neighborhoods you service, for example “seo services Center City”, or “seo service Chester County”.

Now comes the harder part, that is frankly a bit tedious. For each combination, see if you can create a somewhat unique post that’s 500-1000 words for that keyword. For us, it is a post like this. I try to write a post that helps my potential clients learn something or do something they didn’t know they could. 

Prominence 

Now, this is the good part. If you do write quality posts for these keywords, you will be raising your prominence. Google knows that all these neighborhoods are in the Philadelphia region. So, for each good post you write, you help raise your prominence on a given topic in a given location.

Prominence is also helped by the basic techniques I mentioned earlier, such as being a part of local business groups. Please see the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce or JobStars for listings that might pertain to you. Any local listing helps.

Relevance

This is why I like the blog technique because it hits all three key areas. If your keyword is a descriptor of what you do and the neighborhood is one you serve, it is highly likely that you will score points on relevance.

Finding the right SEO for your small business in a neighborhood like Philadelphia can be a crucial way to get your company noticed online.

If you are interested in what more we do, check out Small Business Marketing in Philadelphia and also in NJ.