Engage - Plug and Play
Welcome to Engage, your portal to better marketing

by Gabrielle Richardson

We are excited to announce that we've just launched a new website for a global advertising production agency called ICP. ICP manages the digital assets for leadings brands from Tiffany & Co, Unilever, Estee Lauder to Calvin Klein. You can check the new site out here.

ICP website on iPad

Our Process

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by Gabrielle Richardson

We are very excited to announce that the new Save the Student website is now live!

http://www.savethestudent.org/

Save the Student is the number 1 student money website in the UK and they came to us last year to revitalise their site. Started in 2007 by savvy student Owen Burek, the site has gone from strength to strength over the years but was in need of an update.

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by Gabrielle Richardson

In honour of World Gin Day, we thought we’d take a look back on one of our favourite projects: building the new website for The City of London Gin Distillery.

Back in 2015, an existing client referred The City of London Distillery to us as they needed a new website. With a new gin about to be launched, a popular bar and in-demand distillery tours and classes, COLD needed a website that could take table bookings, tour bookings and sell their multiple award-winning bottles of gin.

Our process started by wireframing the website layout; planning the structure of each page and the key user journeys. With the blueprints agreed, the design of the website then begins, starting first with the homepage and then rolling out the concept to the rest of the website.

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by James Ward

In the industry of digital marketing, time is money. The faster tasks are completed the larger the profit at the end of the project. If you find yourself spending time repeating the same tasks over and over again - Grunt can certainly help take the weight off!

Grunt is an “automated task manager”, as the name suggests, it can do the “grunt” tasks for you while you get on with the more interesting stuff.

Every time you make a change to your Sass or CSS Grunt can recompile and minify everything for you without you having to lift a finger, simply refresh the browser and volia your changes are there. Inserted a new image? No problem! Grunt can compress the image down to save space and increase performance - all automatically.

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by James Ward

Usability can be a difficult challenge to overcome, not because it is particularly difficult to implement, but because it is subjective. What one person deems to be simple and easy to use may be someone else's nightmare; there are definite ‘better’ and ‘worse’ approaches but there is no best, specific way of overcoming a particular issue.

WordPress does a good job of making things simple out of the box, especially when compared to alternative Content Management Systems, but that doesn’t mean there’s no room for improvement.

In this article, we'll highlight some interesting ways your web development team can boost usability in WordPress.

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by Hélène Dedieu

2. E-commerce SVG Icon Set

Visits to shopping websites via smartphone or tablet now account for 45%1 of all ecommerce traffic in the UK. This is why it’s vital for every business to ensure their site is responsive.

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by Hélène Dedieu

To celebrate the Rugby World Cup being in full swing, we’ve created a free set of vector icons for you to download.

Available in JPG, PNG, AI, PDF, EPS, and SVG format, our Rugby World Cup Icon Set can be used for both commercial and personal purposes.

Enjoy!

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by Josanne Griffin-Mason

Stories have defined our world since the dawn of communication, from etchings carved into cave walls to long nights spent telling tales around a burning fire.

As we evolved, we invented new ways to entertain and teach, and our stories transformed into letters, books, film, theatre, song… And then came Twitter. Suddenly, our beautiful prose was so severely severed, it could be nothing more than 140 characters in a stream of other peoples’ erratic noise.

But that doesn’t spell a bloody end for stories. Quite the contrary; we just need to find new ways to tell them.

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by Farrell Coleman

Let’s start off by stating we’d all like our websites to generate tens of thousands of hits a day (albeit, maybe not the system admins). With traffic like that we’d be rich - surely! Assuming some of these users buy something or click an advert, of course. If not, then you’ll just have a nice, big hosting bill to pay.

The point is that traffic is only useful if it is relevant; a bot crawling your website or a user clicking the wrong link are nothing more than meaningless numbers arbitrarily growing the egos of the marketing and SEO managers responsible for increasing said traffic.

The purpose of this article is to take a look at the notion that sometimes, less is more, and how it’s all about quality over quantity when it comes to web traffic.

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by Peter Richman

The disconcerting truth is that most websites fail to deliver – make sure yours isn’t one of them by reading on, as we explore the key things to think about when commissioning your new website.

A WEBSITE'S PERFORMANCE ISN'T DEPENDENT ON HOW MUCH YOU SPEND ON IT.

That might sound like and odd thing for a web design agency to say, but it’s true. We look after hundreds of websites, and the ones that really work are the ones that have looked carefully at their marketing strategy before commissioning the site, and understand exactly how the website fits into their strategy.

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by Farrell Coleman

In economics, inflation is commonly seen as the growth in prices of goods and services, which consequently reduces the purchasing power of a currency. Or in layman's terms, Freddos no longer cost 15p and a can of Coke now costs more than a whole bottle used to in the good old days.

How does this relate to your website? Well, inflation is not limited to currency; traffic inflation is happening right now online, and on a much larger scale than you may be aware of.

There has been a 753% inflation of Internet users over the past 15 years.

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by Josanne Griffin-Mason

Undoubtedly, you’ve spent years warning your colleagues not to click on suspicious email links for fear of being phished, spammed, hacked, or infected with a business-killing virus.

Now, after all that hard convincing, you must go back to the office floor with your tail between your legs, and tell everyone that it’s imperative for them trawl through their spam folders and click on those email links they’ve spent their entire careers terrified of.

This isn’t a sick joke, and we’re not overreacting: this is ICANN’s Whois Accuracy Program (WAP).

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by Farrell Coleman

So you’ve opened your new shiny website, scrolled through your professionally structured content and your beautiful parallaxing imagery, and all is well; time to go live! But hang on a minute, when I scroll to the bottom of the page the navigation bar flickers and disappears…that wasn’t part of the original designs. Also, I don’t remember my contact email address being example@email.com… Something isn’t right here.

Whether you built your website yourself, hired a freelancer, or went professional with a web design agency, QA’ing (quality assuring) your own website is essential. In fact, setting aside some time to thoroughly investigate each page is just as important as adding the content or signing off the designs.

This guide will highlight five important rules you might not have considered when testing your website.

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by Farrell Coleman

There is no nicer feeling for a small website owner than signing into your Google Analytics account only to see a nice spike in traffic. You get all excited and drill down to try to analyse the source and see you have a new referral that has created 25 sessions in less than a week! Great news… Except, you don’t remember posting anything relevant to ‘buttons-for-your-website.com’ and upon inspecting the site you can’t find the back link anywhere.

Removing Google Analytics Spam - PlugAndPlayDesign

 

Analytics spam can be more than just a spatter of disappointment when you realise those 25 shiny new sessions were just a misbehaving bot crawling your website or spamming Google’s tracking service. Analytics spam can and does occur in huge quantities that can have a serious impact on your perceived data, creating or blocking patterns and trends on your website. For example, if last month your website generated 21,000 sessions and this month it generates 23,000 sessions then you may be inclined to start celebrating, your new marketing push has paid off! However if this month saw a 3,000 session increase in spam traffic then your actual meaningful traffic has reduced by 1,000. Spotting and removing analytics spam could be the difference between recognising a failing marketing effort and not, or at the very least it can stop you scratching your head over mysterious referral traffic.

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by Josanne Griffin-Mason

The Plug and Play social media calendar organises all the need-to-know dates – so all you have to do is pick the ones that suit your brand and start the conversation with your followers. After all, social media marketing is all about timing.

Monday 1st June 2015

Take the time on Say Something Nice Day to connect with your followers. Own a fashion label? Compliment your customers when they tag you in an #OOTD (outfit of the day) post – it’s a great way to build a positive representation of your brand.

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by Josanne Griffin-Mason

The general election had brands’ tongues wagging, the threat of Mobilegeddon Part 2 loomed and a certain little piglet captured hearts and minds around the globe. These were the best marketing campaigns of May 2015.

Vodafone introduced us to Piggy-Sue and Keith the Postie

Vodafone are the clear marketing winners this month, showing us the true power of their product through the tale of a connection formed between a lost piglet and postman.

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by Farrell Coleman

Everyone has heard the term ‘all publicity is good publicity’ and it’s a debate that has recently been revitalised by the controversial ad campaign launched by supplements brand ‘Protein World’.

Are You Beach Body Ready? - SEO Publicity

If you happen to be a London commuter or like to keep up with the latest social scandal, then you are probably already aware of the campaign in question. ‘Are You Beach Body Ready?’ A campaign almost certainly launched to create discussion and stir up a social media storm.

This article will be approaching the debate from a slightly different angle, the SEO benefits of going ‘viral’.

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by Farrell Coleman

As many of you will already know, earlier this week (April 21st 2015, to be precise) Google unleashed its first major algorithm update in years that wasn’t named after an animal; Mobilegeddon, though not the official name, has been the word on the lips of SEOs worldwide over the past few months, so what is it?

Black and White iPhones - Mobile Responsive Webdesign - Mobilegeddon

One of the reasons Google has risen to almost world dominating heights over the past 15 years has been their ability to adapt to the ever changing digital landscape, the Mobilegeddon update is simply Google doing what Google does best, ensuring their search engine serves its customers with the most relevant quality search results it possibly can.

The Mobilegeddon update will greatly favour mobile friendly websites to users searching via mobile. This means if your website is not responsive and you don’t happen to have the domain authority of Amazon or Wikipedia then you could see your website sliding down page rankings into the unreachable depths of page two.

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