Thursday, May 4, 2017

Support Those Who Serve | May Charity Of The Month

This month our Check-in 4 Charity members are supporting the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is an amazing non-profit Check-in 4 Charity has had the privilege to benefit before. The mission of Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is to serve the United States military personnel wounded or injured in service to our nation, and their families. 100% of donations to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund go directly to their programs and no portion of contributions is deducted for administrative costs.

Beginning in the year 200, the Intrepid Fallen Heroes fund is a leader in supporting the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families. The Fund has provided nearly $200 million for families of military personnel lost in service, and for wounded military personnel too.

Explore their site here to understand more and find out how you can get more involved with this amazing charity. Interested in becoming a Check-in 4 Charity member? Visit our website or give us a call at 800-888-4084 and sign up today.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The Future Is Voice Search

A Burger King commercial caused a bit of controversy recently, not for anything racy or disturbing, but for being too invasive. The 15-second ad starts with a Burger King employee holding up the sandwich saying, “You’re watching a 15-second Burger King ad, which is unfortunately not enough time to explain all the fresh ingredients in the Whopper sandwich. But I’ve got an idea. OK, Google, what is the Whopper burger?”

If a viewer has the Google Home assistant or an Android phone with voice search enabled within listening range of the TV, that last phrase - “Hello Google, what is the Whopper burger?” - is intended to trigger the device to search for Whopper on Google and read out the finding from Wikipedia. Admittedly, it’s a clever marketing campaign and the first one to make use of what’s fast becoming a standard in many homes - the personal voice assistant.

Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Home assistants sold at a rapid pace last year, and this year the sales are expected to grow even more. With both assistants able to do everything from record notes to control lights and appliances by simply speaking to them, people are discovering the value in owning these assistants. And one of the biggest uses of these devices is the ability to search for information or businesses simply by speaking.

Moms can look up recipes and have the assistant read them back as she’s making dinner. Dads can ask the assistant for the nearest automotive store. The kids can ask about upcoming concerts or video game releases. The possibilities are endless - and convenient. All you do is simply speak.

And it’s not just these assistants that are becoming the go-to devices for voice search. Smartphones are now a big part of the voice search landscape. Voice search can be enabled on both Android and Apple smartphones, and Samsung is releasing their Bixby voice assistant with the new Galaxy S8 this month. Even Microsoft is entering the game with their Cortana voice assistant which can be enabled on computers and tablets.

What does this mean for your business? First of all, it’s important to have a solid SEO strategy in place that can capitalize on this emerging search arena. When people type a search phrase into their browsers, most of the time they use simple truncated phrases to save on typing. For example, if someone is searching for an orthodontist in Dallas they may simply enter, “orthodontists Dallas.” This is especially true on a mobile device where typing can be tedious.

But a voice search uses more natural language, and most people aren’t concerned about truncation. The same person searching for an orthodontist may say, “What is the closest orthodontist to Jefferson Elementary?”, or “What are the top five orthodontists nearest to my home?” Natural language searches like these open up new challenges for SEO.

Here at Solutions by Design, we are fully aware of this new future in search, and are positioning our SEO efforts to meet this new challenge. Part of our SEO strategy will be to make use of this new “natural language” search in our optimization efforts and guide our clients in understanding the implications and benefits. It’s an exciting transition in the world of search and we want our clients to be prepared.