Mobile Website Design, Facebook Contest Rules and EdgeRank #FridayFinds

by Sherryl Perry on August 30, 2013

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Did you know that a poorly designed website that causes “faulty redirects” and “smartphone-only” errors could potentially hurt you when it comes to where Google places your website in the search engine results? Are you aware of the recent changes to Facebook contests that could make it easier for you to run a contest or special promotion? Are you interested in what your Facebook EdgeRank is? Find out more about these topics and check out an article that highlights 7 impressive mobile website designs in this week’s #FridayFinds.

Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?

According to MarketingCharts.com, website traffic from smartphones has grown 10 times more quickly (over the last year) than desktop traffic. So, it should come as no surprise to any of us that back in June of this year, Google started lowering websites in the search results if they don’t display properly for smartphone users. To learn more about this recent move, check out Google pushes to improve mobile website quality by Scott Matteson.

Bonus Tip: If you’re looking for inspirational mobile website designs, you need to look no further than 7 Brands Doing Mobile Design Right on WebsiteMagazine.com.

New Facebook Rules for Contests, Promotions & Giveaways

Up until now, running a Facebook contest or offering an exclusive promotional offer has been tricky. If anything, Facebook has been extremely -cautious to protect itself legally. This week, FB changed their rules.

What does this mean to you?

  • Previously, you could not ask someone to “like” your page as a way of entering a contest. (You had to put your contest behind a “Fan Gate” either by coding it or running a 3rd party application.)
  • You need to be extremely careful about using image tagging as a way to enter a contest. (This is meant to prevent people from tagging images that the person is actually not in.)
  • You still cannot run promotions on personal pages.

To learn more, check out Facebook Changes Contest Rules – Businesses Win!  by Kimberly Castleberry (soon to be Kimberly Jean Brink) and you can read Facebook’s official announcement here.

EdgeRank: Facebook’s News-Feed Algorithm

Ever wonder why some posts appear in your News Feed while others don’t? Facebook uses an algorithm (referred to as EdgeRank) to determine what users see and when. Therefore, a brand that has a lot of user engagement is more likely to be seen than a post that has few comments. (Truth of the matter is that most consumers do not revisit brand pages that they “like”. So, engagement plays a big role in getting your Facebook posts seen.)

Earlier this month, Facebook announced changes to their EdgeRank algorithm. Basically, Facebook is attempting to deliver high-quality content. If you want to find out more about how FB determines rank, check out: How Does Facebook Determine Whether Posts From Pages Are High-Quality?  by  David Cohen on AllFacebook.com.

Bonus Tip: You can find out what your EdgeRank is by using either a free or pro plan on EdgeRankChecker.com.

Over To You:

What do you think? Had you heard that Google now considers whether or not your website is mobile-friendly when it ranks your website in the search results? Are you more apt to run a special contest or promotion on Facebook now that Facebook has relaxed the rules? Are you concerned with EdgeRank? As always, feel free to share your thoughts, ideas and experiences below in the comment section.

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

karan oberoi September 8, 2013 at 10:10 am

Hi Sherryl,Really, this is such a important thing that a site should be a user friendly because in some countries I don\’t to mention here, Internet speed is low as compared to other countries so its very important to maintain a blog mobile friendly. Thanks a lot for sharing it.

Regards
Karan Oberoi

Reply

Sherryl Perry September 8, 2013 at 5:27 pm

Karan,
That’s a great point about internet speed and site load time for both mobile and desktop.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Friday Finds: Social Media Branding, Color in Website Design and ImagesMy Profile

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Silviu
Twitter:
September 5, 2013 at 12:30 pm

Hi Sherryl,

I honestly don’t think the mobiles will replace desktops. There is a trend and there is fashion, indeed. Unfortunately, for those companies, you cannot use a mobile to do everything. I bet they are very sad because a mobile cannot be transformed into a fridge or used as a car or plane. :) :)

Seriously, a mobile has a powerful disadvantage: it must be portable so the screen cannot be very big. The same with the keyboard. I think of all those old people… . I will be one of them. Their vision is not so great as it was years ago. Poor vision, shaking hands etc. It is more and more difficult to use a mobile. I know from experience. More and more of them will stick to a desktop computer with a screen reader software, magnifying glass and other aids. This will create a need for desktops.

However, I acknowledge the importance of mobiles and I am interested to know more about responsive design. I know there are sites that can test your blog and tell you if your design is well adapted for mobiles. Do you know such sites?

Have a wonderful day
Silviu recently posted..How to Clean Your PC and Make it Run Like the WindMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 6, 2013 at 7:07 pm

Hi Silviu,

I just recently bought my first smartphone and I’m not a big fan of reading blogs online. When I do, I find myself increasing the size to accommodate my eyesight. I can honestly say that I would never attempt to leave a comment using my Android. If I were on a tablet, possibly but when I look at my Google analytics, I see very few people accessing my site with tablets.

Check out this site to test your site: mattkersley.com/responsive/.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Friday Finds: Social Media Branding, Color in Website Design and ImagesMy Profile

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Harish Dahima September 3, 2013 at 10:47 am

Hey Sherryl,Another great round up here. Thanks for sharing these finds. I’m heading over to Kim’s post right now to check out more about Facebook contests. Have a great weekend!

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Sherryl Perry September 4, 2013 at 5:54 pm

Thanks for taking the time to let me know that you enjoyed my post. Like Adrienne, I have no plan on running a Facebook contest but I believe there are opportunities there depending on what your niche is and how your target market is. Good luck if you decide to run them!

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Adrienne
Twitter:
September 2, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Hey Sherryl,

Great round up here girl and these are topics that we all need to be aware of whether we like it or not.

I learned about having a mobile friendly site over a year ago so I definitely jumped on that band wagon to make my blog more mobile friendly. Google still doesn’t like me much, my rankings have remained the same for over two years now. Guess what! I don’t care, people love my content and that’s all that matters.

I’ve never run a contest and I never intended to on Facebook because of how strict hey were. I mean it is their site but I’m not getting into trouble over something like that. They change so often that what we do today won’t be okay six months from now.

Ah, Facebook’s good old edgerank. That still confuses me to this day so I’ve just given up. Honestly, I don’t have time to spend on Facebook these days so as long as I’m interacting with my fans then I think that’s about the best I can do.

Thanks for sharing these topics with us Sherryl and have a great week.

~Adrienne
Adrienne recently posted..How To Change Your WordPress UsernameMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 3, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Hi Adrienne,
It’s great to see you back in the swing of things. I hope all is well with you.

My page rank has remained stagnant for quite a while now. The good news is that (according to Fruition.net), after having a huge negative impact by the Google algorithm changes 4 times in a row (May, June and July), I finally got a +88% affect in August. My traffic has not reflected that yet but summer is always notoriously slower for me.

You do have a popular site and you get lots of comments. So, keep up the good work! :)

BTW – I have no intentions of running a Facebook contest either but I’m sure there must be someone here who will give it a shot.

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Susan Cooper
Twitter:
September 1, 2013 at 3:04 pm

Hi Sherryl, I had heard about Google’s position on mobile friendly websites. I had read somewhere that I was important to have a mobile friendliness site to help with your rankings. The fact is, it’s really hard to keep up with all the changing they make. It makes one a bit weary, doesn’t it? The fact is regardless of google having a mobile friendly site just makes good sense. For me it is where a little under half of my readers are coming from.

The stuff about Facebook is interesting and certainly worth me checking it out.
Susan Cooper recently posted..Priming The Pump: Story (Podcast)My Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 3, 2013 at 6:44 pm

I can picture you running a Facebook contest Susan! :)

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Ileane
Twitter:
August 31, 2013 at 11:09 am

Hi Sherryl!

Last month I purchased my first SmartPhone ever, and it’s only because I lost the old flip phone I had.
I was pretty surprised to find the my blog was more mobile friendly than I thought it would be. There was one big problem that I didn’t know about though. The Digg Digg plugin doesn’t work on mobile, so I had to add another sharing plugin. I opted for the Pinterest Plugin (pro version) and that also covers the major sites like Twitter, Facebook, Google + and LinkedIn.

Watching YouTube on my phone is much easier than I thought it would be too, and last week they updated the app so that you can watch one video while scrolling to find the next.

Thanks for the info about Facebook contests, now I’m all up to speed. :)
Ileane recently posted..5 YouTube One Channel Designs That Will Inspire You To ActionMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 1, 2013 at 6:15 pm

Hi Ileane,
It’s great seeing you here! I bought my first smartphone last month too. My SIM card was so old that it was giving me errors. The tech had to transfer all my numbers manually because my card was too old to be read by their machine! :)

I switched from Digg Digg to the Floating Social Bar plugin because Digg Digg was not displaying properly for me either.

I thought that my site was displaying fine on mobile but apparently it’s not. So, I need to address that soon. So much to do! Thanks for the info on the Pinterest Pro plugin. Someone may find that helpful.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Facebook Graph Search Privacy Concerns – Be Careful What You LikeMy Profile

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Catarina
Twitter:
August 31, 2013 at 10:46 am

Hope my sites look fine on all kinds of smartphones and tablets. Installed the Jetpack that should make sure they do:-)

By the way, installed the Google Plus badge on my Swedish websites. Thanks for that information. Should be appreciated by Google?:-)
Catarina recently posted..What’s your strategy?My Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 1, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Catarina,
I just looked at your site on my Android and it looked fine. I then went to it on my computer and it looks like your theme isn’t displaying properly (no sidebars are showing at all). I checked it on both Chrome and Firefox and it looked the same). I’ll check it again later or tomorrow but you may want to take a peek at it too.

That’s great that you installed the Google Plus badge. I am so far behind lately on doing things like this myself!

Reply

Jeannette Paladino
Twitter:
August 30, 2013 at 11:18 pm

Sherryl — well, I’m glad, then, that I’ve had my website set up for mobile for over two years now. I’m not surprised that Google penalizes poorly designed websites. I’d like it if we knew what their criteria is for a “good” website design. Sometimes it’s in the eye of the beholder but the only beholder that counts in this case is Google!
Jeannette Paladino recently posted..Keyword Tools for Blogs and Websites: Wordtracker and SEMrushMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 1, 2013 at 5:26 pm

That’s true Jeannette. I’m glad your site has been mobile too. I had been using a WP plugin but I think I’m going back to the drawing board on this one.

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Leora Wenger
Twitter:
August 30, 2013 at 3:09 pm

It’s funny – I originally read your post on my smart phone. It would be better if your sidebar floated down on the smart phone – that’s how responsive web works. In the CSS code, it’s a simple media-query that says if your browser is 768px or less, #sidebar should be float: none;. And then your main content should be 100% width or auto.

The alternative, of course, is a more responsive theme.

Hope you don’t mind my saying so! Have a great weekend.
Leora Wenger recently posted..Feedly Review: One Way to Cope with Information OverloadMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry August 30, 2013 at 4:39 pm

Thanks Leora. I appreciate your letting me know. I checked my site on my smart phone and thought it looked okay. Then, I checked your site and liked it a lot better than mine. When I went back to my site to check again, it was displaying complete differently. So, something strange is happening. CSS is something that I really have never mastered. When I get a chance, I’ll look at the site that Jeannette Paladino recommends.

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Leora Wenger
Twitter:
August 30, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Would love to learn what Jeannette is recommending.

I really enjoyed learning media-queries – it makes a lot of sense. You basically set one set of CSS rules as standard, but then you tell the browser if you are between this width and this width, please do these rules instead. I now set them up whenever I start a new WordPress site.
Leora Wenger recently posted..Feedly Review: One Way to Cope with Information OverloadMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry August 30, 2013 at 10:08 pm

Leora,
Jeannette had recommended Dudamobile. I checked it out but it’s $9 a month and I really need to cut costs right now. I may need to learn CSS.

Reply

Leora Wenger
Twitter:
August 31, 2013 at 8:33 pm

That sounds pricey for something that can be solved with a responsive theme! If you need help with CSS, feel free to ask.
Leora Wenger recently posted..Feedly Review: One Way to Cope with Information OverloadMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry September 1, 2013 at 5:24 pm

I agree. Thanks Leora. You may be hearing from me. :)

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Tom Jamieson
Twitter:
August 30, 2013 at 1:24 pm

Hey Sherryl,

Another great round up here. Thanks for sharing these finds. I’m heading over to Kim’s post right now to check out more about Facebook contests. Have a great weekend!
Tom Jamieson recently posted..How To Change Permalinks on an Existing WordPress BlogMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry August 30, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Thanks for dropping by and letting me know that you enjoyed the roundups. I think you’ll enjoy Kim’s post. You have a great weekend too!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Friday Finds: Mobile Website Design, Facebook Contest Rules and EdgeRankMy Profile

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Reginald
Twitter:
August 30, 2013 at 9:42 am

Hi Sherryl,

Thanks for writing this up. Let me see. My site is mobile friendly thanks to Genesis Framework.

It is pretty cool especially when it comes to browsing through mobile phones or iPads. Nowadays, how many of us actually uses a computer to view the web? :)

I have yet to hear about EdgeRank and definitely, going to check it out right after this.

Have a great weekend.
Reginald recently posted..5 Insights You Should Know About Make Money BloggingMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry August 30, 2013 at 4:45 pm

I continue to hear good things about the Genesis Framework Reginald. Thanks for letting us know that it’s what you use. I had heard about EdgeRank before but I honestly never paid much attention to it. I have mixed feelings about Facebook. Although, some bloggers are very active there.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..2 Steps to Stalking the Popular Kids and Getting More TrafficMy Profile

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