How We Reduced Page Load Times by 70%

We recently custom-built an awesome-looking WordPress website that was a huge upgrade in quality from what the client had previously. Unfortunately, the high-quality images and functionality were taking at least 8-10 seconds to fully load. In today’s competitive market of limited attention spans and SEO rankings, 8-10 seconds is much too long.

To ensure an upgrade in website speed, we analyzed the site, identified the bottlenecks, and implemented a variety of changes, resulting in a final load time of 2-4 seconds: a reduction averaging 65-70%!

Want to know how we did it? Keep reading!

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How to create custom events in Google Analytics

Want specific data captured? Create custom events in Google Analytics to track the valuable actions users take on your website.

We’ll take it as a given that if you have your own website (or manage a website), you’re already familiar with the awesome amount of useful data provided by Google Analytics.  It’s an unsurpassed tool for collecting and analyzing user data, providing you with the necessary intel to really make your site work for your business. Most website owners are familiar with Google Analytics’ basic tracking metrics, such as:

  • New Users
  • Search Query (what users search for on the site)
  • Landing Pages
  • Average Session Duration
  • Bounce Rate

While all of this information is obviously very useful, it only scratches the surface of what Google Analytics is capable of providing — and most importantly, this general data doesn’t capture anything that may be more specific to your own site and your own business goals. Read more

Making it Official: Ascent Digital Media is now a Certified SharpSpring Partner

In official recognition of a relationship dating back to 2013, Ascent Digital Media has been recognized as a certified SharpSpring partner, with proven, extensive expertise in the world’s top-rated marketing automation platform. SharpSpring is a leading software platform utilized for marketing automation software, with features including anonymous visitor ID to email marketing to a web-based CRM, social media management, blogging & landing page generation. SharpSpring is similar in functionality to peers such as HubSpot, Pardot & Marketo, but is often a far more cost-effective and customer-friendly solution. Read more

Landing Page Design Best Practices: How to Make a Perfect Lead Generator

Before you spend a dime on PPC, spend some time… building an Effective Landing Page

While it takes a perfect combination of many factors from keyword research to bidding strategies to ad content to build a successful Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaign, they ultimately live & die with the landing page itself. When you’re paying for someone to see something, you’d better make sure they’re seeing something GREAT.

So how do you go about creating a landing page that reaches its maximum potential & makes it rain leads… how do you build your perfect landing page?

Aren’t you glad we’re here to tell you?

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5 Advantages of Hiring an SEO Agency Vs. In House

SEO Agency vs. In House: The decision might be easier than you think.

Businesses today need to have an online presence now more than ever.  Online advertisements, social media, email marketing, and user friendly websites are as important as magazine ads, newspaper ads, and letters were 25 years ago. More and more businesses today need digital marketing experts in place that understand all of the ins-and-outs of Search Engine Optimization. So which is better: hiring an SEO Agency to handle all of your search engine optimization needs, or creating a team from within your own ranks?

We’ve assembled a few reasons as to why you should consider hiring an SEO Agency vs. In House: Read more

Elevate Your Digital & Content Marketing Skills with These Free Courses & Certifications

If you’re a business owner, chances are you may have some knowledge or understanding of digital marketing and content marketing. Digital and content marketing realm (i.e. social media, SEO, blogging, eBook writing, etc.) can help your business grow and, when done right, will lead to increased brand awareness, sales, and more.

If you’re handling digital marketing on your own, below are several (over 65+) free online courses you can take to elevate your digital and content marketing skills and knowledge. I encourage you to take them at your leisure to improve your digital marketing skill-set.

If you’d rather get expert help from the pros, give us a shout – we’d be glad to help.

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9 Basic Internet Marketing Tips & Tricks for Businesses

It’s a good idea to grab all the low-hanging fruit in the realm of digital marketing. Why miss out on easy ways to improve your internet marketing? Before you go ahead and really dive into a full-fledged, comprehensive digital marketing program for your business, consider these basic internet marketing tips and tricks.

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The Digital Identity: A Guide to Online Branding, Marketing & Web Design

You may or may not have heard about digital identities, but you probably already intuitively know what makes up one.

What is a Digital Identity?

Think of a digital identity like you would your own real-life identity: it’s a collection of information that represents who you are, in this case, as an online entity.

Whether it’s a company, an organization, a brand or a person, a digital identity encompasses all of the things on the web that add up to who you are, including social media accounts, websites, Wiki information and more.

So why is it important to manage your digital identity? Well, like I said, it’s who you are.

If you’re a growing business, but you don’t have a website, think how that affects your digital identity. If you’re a large corporation, yet your Facebook page is practically inactive, how do you think your identity is impacted?

When you have your digital identity in check, you’re only helping your business in the modern digital age. Read more

How to Easily Create eBooks for Your Small Business Website

At Ascent, we like to help small businesses have the most awesome web presence possible. We particularly focus on the art of conversion optimization – maximizing a site’s ability to capture new leads that will help a business grow. We often recommend that small businesses try new tactics to provide value to their visitors while beginning to build a relationship with them. One way to do so, is to leverage your business’s unique expertise by offering an eBook for download – in exchange for an email address, of course, that can be used in your email marketing & marketing automation outreach. Read more

Best Practices for Website Carousel Sliders and Slideshows

Web design trends are constantly evolving, and as trends come & go, true best practices begin to emerge. For eons, using a slideshow/carousel as the main focal point of your site’s homepage was The Thing To Do. It has been accepted almost as a given, must-have element in the design process, as if on the web design 10 Commandments, “Thou Shalt Have Thee A Homepage Slider” was #2 on the list, sitting right after “Thou Shalt Place Thine Logo in the Upper Left” and before “Thou Shalt Not Use Comic Sans, for it is an Abomination Before the Lord.”

But the times, they are a-changing, and forward thinking, user-experience-focused geniuses like ourselves are starting to advise our clients to think twice about using one of the longest-standing, time-honored  page elements in web design history: the Holy Homepage Slider. Read more

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