First 5 things you should do with the OnePlus 5

So you’ve taken the plunge and bought yourself a OnePlus 5: congratulations. Once you’re done running your hands over that lovely metal finish, what should you do next? As with most OnePlus phones, the OnePlus 5 has a lot to offer if you know where to look. So here are the first five things you should do with your new OnePlus 5 to get the most of out it.

Set up the fingerprint sensor

This one’s a gimme really. You’ll be prompted to set up the OnePlus 5 fingerprint scanner during initial setup, but if you skipped that step in your rush to have a play around the software, be sure to go back and register your digits.

The OnePlus 5 fingerprint scanner is crazy fast and accurate, making unlocking your phone a breeze. It’s even located in a logical place. The scratch-resistant ceramic scanner doubles as a home button when using the capacitive keys but can still be used to unlock your phone if you switch to on-screen navigation buttons.

Remember, each digit you register slows down the unlocking process, but you can always mix and match two different fingers in one fingerprint scan and (usually) not lose any accuracy. Give it a shot and if you don’t like the results, just register separate fingerprints, but only as many as you actually plan to use. Just go to Settings > Security & fingerprint > Add fingerprint.

Enable dark mode

Don’t forget that, unlike many Android phones, OnePlus has full support for a system-wide dark theme. The fact that the OnePlus 5 has an AMOLED screen means you should strongly consider switching to the dark theme as your default, right out of the box.

That’s because AMOLED displays can actually save some battery life by using dark backgrounds and themes. Black pixels on an OLED display are actually turned off, unlike black pixels on an LCD panel, which are still backlit. The fewer pixels requiring power, the longer your battery will last. Plus it looks the business because OLED screens have great contrast and inky blacks. Just go to Settings > Display > Theme > Default/light/dark.

Set up gestures

Off-screen gestures are nothing new, but, just like double tap to wake, they’re incredibly useful to know. It’s just that it can be pretty easy to forget they’re on your phone unless you’re actively using them. Learning all the shortcuts the OnePlus 5 offers doesn’t take long, but making use of them will really speed up your experience and add to your enjoyment.

Some are enabled by default, while others will need to be switched on or set up. There’s double tap to wake, a camera shortcut (just double press the power button), or you can draw letters when the screen is off to launch an app or start the flashlight. The best thing of all is that these are fully customizable, just go to Settings > Gestures to set them all set up.

Enable battery percentage in the status bar

Really. This is super useful because you can quickly glance at your status bar rather than having to take a guess or pull down the notifications shade to see what battery percentage you have left. Just head to Settings > Status bar > Show battery percentage.

Set vibration intensity setting

OnePlus’ previous phones had horrible vibration motors, but that has now been fixed in the OnePlus 5. Not only that but you now have the option to tweak the intensity to exactly how you like it (light/medium/strong) for incoming calls, notifications and for general interactions like typing on the keyboard or pressing the capacitive keys.

Remember that while the stronger the intensity of the vibration (and the more places it is used) the greater the drain on your battery, haptic feedback barely consumes any power. Just jump into Settings > Sound & vibration > Vibration intensity > Incoming call/notifications/vibrate on tap to set it up. Don’t forget to use the Alert Slider to quickly and easily switch between your various sound profiles too.

What’s the first thing you did with your OnePlus 5? What else should new owners do?

[“Source-androidauthority”]

6 Bitcoin Apps You Need to Know About

top bitcoin appstop bitcoin apps

If you are a bitcoin enthusiast, there are a few bitcoin apps you need to know about, as they might come in handy. Whether you want to earn a few free satoshis playing games in your free time, or whether you want to constantly keep track of bitcoin’s price, there is an app out there that will take care of your needs. Here are a few examples:

6. CRYPTONATOR

This free app allows you to check conversion rates for over 500 different cryptocurrencies, in over 40 different exchanges. Essentially, Cryptonator makes it easy for users to find out how much cryptocurrencies people own are worth.

It also includes a portfolio tool that allows users to see how their selected coins perform over a specific period of time, as well a “winners & losers” section that shows which coins are doing good, and which aren’t.

5. BITCOIN TICKER WIDGET

Bitcoin Ticker Widget is exactly what it sounds like it is: a widget that gives you bitcoin’s price directly on your home screen. Widgets with the price of other cryptocurrencies can also be set up, showing conversion rates for a few different fiat currencies. The prices shown in the widgets are taken from some of the world’s top cryptocurrency exchanges, such as BTCC and Bitstamp.

4. BLOCKCHAIN GAME

If you want to introduce someone to bitcoin, you need to show them this game. Not only will it give you context to explain what blockchain technology is, but it will also help the other person earn a few satoshis and start playing around with bitcoin before they get serious about it. The game itself is pretty entertaining, and killing free time while earning bitcoin makes it a lot more enjoyable.

3. BITCOIN MAP

Bitcoin Map is a free app you can install on your smartphone that shows you where you can spend your bitcoins. This way you will be able to know whether the local burger joint accepts bitcoin or not. Even if you know every brick-and-mortar store accepting bitcoins in your area, the app may still come in handy when you decide to go for a road trip. There are other Bitcoin map apps out there, but most of them only give you the location of bitcoin ATMs, not actual brick-and-mortar stores accepting the cryptocurrency.

2. BLOCKFOLIO

Blockfolio is a free financial app aimed at cryptocurrency enthusiasts. Not only does it show price information for bitcoin and over 800 altcoins, it can be set to send the user a notification whenever a specific currency reaches a price threshold. Moreover, as if that insane number of altcoins wasn’t enough, it also features over 30 different fiat currencies so it can reach a global audience.

1. ZTRADER

zTrader is the trading client app every cryptocurrency trader needs. It features information from most major exchanges and can show in-depth analysis on different currencies, giving the user a great market overview. The app is pretty complex and gives users tons of information that can, at first, be overwhelming. It will, however, make traders’ lives easier.

The app features secure, encrypted storage of API keys, and even though it’s free to download, there is also a pro version.

[Source:-ME]

The Switch should finally let you back up your Nintendo games online

A couple of days ago we were treated to a sneak preview of the Nintendo Switch after one lucky gamer got his hands on the console early – and now an eagle-eyed viewer has spotted something rather interesting in the resulting clip.

Hidden in the small print is a paragraph that says your gaming purchases will be tied to your online Nintendo account, rather than the device you’re playing them on. Previously, Nintendo games had been locked to specific hardware, which meant a costly upgrade every time a new machine came out.

“Your Nintendo Account contains your Nintendo eShop purchase history and current balance,” reads the text. “By re-linking your Nintendo Account after initializing the console, it will be possible to redownload any software or DLC purchased using that account. (Software that has been discontinued may not be available to redownload in some cases.)”

Switch perfect

Good news for gamers then and another sign that Nintendo is finally getting to grips with gaming in the modern day – alongside all those games for mobile devices it’s suddenly decided to start releasing.

Nintendo itself hasn’t made any comment on the revelation so we’ll probably have to wait until the Switch finally goes on sale (March 3) for confirmation of exactly how this is going to work – will you be able to register multiple Switches with the same account, for example? Nevertheless it’s a promising development though.

Another unanswered question is whether or not compatible games from the Wii Uand 3DS also be available to download through the new system, thus saving money on new copies… but we just have to wait and see. In the meantime here’s everything we know about the Nintendo Switch so far.

[Source:-Tech Rader]

Tony Romo: More Valuable Than You Might Think

You will not find a person on this planet who wishes Tony Romo well more than I do. He has been one of the greatest football players I have ever seen and, from everything that I can see, one of the best public individuals, too. People should be pointing to Romo and telling their children “that’s how you do it.” The world would be a much better place.

But none of that should factor at all into what the Dallas Cowboys decide to do with him. While they could cut him loose and let him make his own choices as a favor to him, they really should not do that. While NFL history does have several examples of franchise quarterbacks moving for relatively low value, the circumstances around this year need consideration.

Most important is the Cowboys’ salary cap situation. The answer here is that it is not an issue. The Cowboys clearly intended to keep Romo on the roster for 2017 before the emergence of Dak Prescott. While they are currently (according to overthecap.com) $11 million over the 2017 cap, they have a number of moves available to them which put them in a very reasonable situation in short order without touching Tony Romo’s contract. The $5 million he could potentially save them is useful, but not necessary. The possibility of a June 1st cut is also out there, but if I’m the Cowboys, I’d prefer to take the hit now and not in 2018 where Zack Martin, La’el Collins, Anthony Hitchens, and DeMarcus Lawrence all await free agency simultaneously.

But what can’t be underestimated is the value of a top notch back-up. The Vikings, Raiders, and Dolphins all suffered for losing their quarterback last year, and we’ve seen other teams, including our own, lose seasons to injuries at the quarterback position. Not just the obvious 2015, but even quality backups like Kyle Orton and John Kitna were not enough to save Dallas seasons, and, in 2008, one victory from Brad Johnson against the 2-14 Rams might have saved the season. $5 million in cap space is worth it to have insurance against not being next year’s version of the Raiders. Dallas absolutely does have a reason to hold on to Tony Romo that goes beyond the wish-fulfillment scenario of him retiring here to coach.

So what is he worth? Well Cleveland wanted a second-rounder for Josh McCown. Certainly Romo is worth more than him. Some point to Sam Bradford’s trade value last year. Others will say Bradford is much younger, which is true, but he’s also much worse a quarterback and has been a significant injury risk himself, so perhaps that is not too far off after all. But people will say that Minnesota was over a barrel and Cleveland thought Dallas was as well. But this is just more incentive for Dallas to wait until the right opportunity comes along. Franchise quarterbacks are a rare thing and having one in your pocket should not be tossed aside lightly.

The people speaking to the inflated values of Bradford or McCown are correct, though. The market will set the value and what Dallas can get for Romo depends on who is bidding. So, the first question is “how many teams need a quarterback and how many might be looking to improve?”

Need a QB: Jets, Browns, Texans*, Jaguars, Broncos*, Rams, 49ers

Might want to improve: Dolphins, Bills, Bengals, Chiefs*, Vikings*, Bears, Cardinals*

I believe teams marked with an asterisk become immediate Super Bowl contenders with Romo at the helm. But what I believe isn’t important. Do they believe it?

There’s no way to know, but all that needs to happen is for two of these asterisk teams to feel that way and you have a bidding war. We haven’t really seen a bidding war for a franchise quarterback before. It could get into scary territory.

Why do I say we only need two teams? Because the 2017 quarterback class is getting roundly panned. Walterfootball.com only has one quarterback rated with a pure first-round grade. These teams are not going to draft someone to come in and carry them. But as ugly as the draft list is, the free agent list is even worse. You have Kirk Cousins, who the Redkins will either sign or confirm as the next Brock Osweiler (beware quarterbacks that are allowed to walk after a successful season). Then the next guy on the list is… Case Keenum? Shaun Hill? Matt McGloin? Any of those guys inspire you?

No, this is a unique situation. There are a number of teams looking for salvation at quarterback, and there’s only one guy out there who is anything like a proven commodity. And he happens to be fourth all-time post-merger in passer rating, yards per attempt, adjusted, net, and adjusted net yards per attempt, and tied for second in touchdown percentage with Peyton Manning. This is a unique opportunity for Dallas and they should not waste it. It’s not like early 90s San Francisco with Joe Montana and Steve Young both insistent on starting, or mid 2000s Green Bay with bad blood between Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers. Nor is it like Drew Brees or Peyton Manning, where injury concerns made the teams leery of spending large amounts of guaranteed money — Romo would come with no  guaranteed money and, unlike those men, his injuries do not come with attendant concerns of whether he can actually continue to throw a football. We’ve seen him do it.

Furthermore, Tony and Dak have shown that they co-exist well and put the team first, so Tony has real value to Dallas and they have no need to get rid of him.

As a post script, one dark horse possibility: I have publicly said that I am quitting the team if they trade Tony to Cleveland, but that was more a joke than anything. Cleveland has some interesting young talent and a ton of draft picks. With a weak 2017 quarterback class, Cleveland could use those picks to bolster its young talent, trade one of them for Romo, and use its multiple high 2018 picks on what they could reasonably hope to be a better quarterback class. In 2017, they have three picks in the top 33 (two in the top 12), and four in the top 52. They could trade one of those to Dallas along with, say, pick 128 (or one of their anticipated fourth-round compensatory picks) and still put a sizeable talent addition on their roster through the draft. Not an unreasonable possibility. Though I shudder to think of Romo at the end of that infamous jersey, perhaps he could be the end of said jersey. If I was Cleveland, I’d think about it.

[Source:-Blogging the Boys]

Wi-Fi Widget for iPhone Gives You Quick Access to Wi-Fi Router Info and Passwords

iPhone: If you want to get any information about the Wi-Fi network you’re connected to on your iPhone, you’d usually have to jump into the Settings. Wi-Fi Widget puts that info on the widgets screen.

With Wi-Fi Widget, you can easily see what network you’re connected to and what the latency is. This is nice if you tend to bounce between a lot of different networks throughout the day. You can also optionally enter Wi-Fi passwords into the app, and get a share menu to quickly send a password to a friend. Wi-Fi Widget is a simple little app, but it does what it’s supposed to do well, and it’s pretty handy for anyone who moves between routers a lot.

[Source:-Lifehacker]

SEO How-to, Part 1: Why Do You Need It?

Editor’s note: This post begins a weekly primer in SEO, with the goal of touching on all of the foundational aspects. At the end, you’ll be able to practice SEO more confidently and converse with others regarding important SEO challenges and opportunities.

Search engine optimization is part science and part art. But the foundational principles of SEO are straightforward. Still, before I can address how to practice SEO, I should explain what it is and why it’s important.

Google alone controls access to trillions of annual requests for information. Google, Yahoo, and Bing remain three of the U.S.’s top four trafficked websites, according to comScore, the research firm. Presence in search results is critical to generating brand awareness and preference. With an estimated $80 billion spent online in the 2016 holiday season alone, and the increasingly “micro-moment,” quick-search mentality of mobile consumers, SEO is more important than ever to driving shoppers to your site and away from the competition.

SEO is simply the practice of optimizing your search-engine presence to produce traffic and to your site. It is also called organic search or natural search. SEO should thread through every aspect of an organization — from product planning, traditional marketing, and customer support to the more obvious areas of digital planning, strategy, content, user experience, design, development, and deployment.

Search engines do not charge advertising fees for natural search results.

Visually, natural search results are always toward the top of the page at the left side. Depending on the search engine and the query, there will probably be ads above the natural listings, as shown below.

Google’s U.S. search results page for the query “canoe paddles.”

Google’s U.S. search results page for the query “canoe paddles.”

With all of the other boxes and components on the search results page, it is increasingly difficult to claim a visible spot in the first view. Google frequently places a Product Listing Ads box and up to four other ads above the first natural search listing, resulting in only one or two visible natural search listings when the page loads.

Regardless, natural search remains one of the top-performing digital marketing channels for most ecommerce businesses. Some studies put the average traffic driven by natural search at around 50 percent of the total, and average revenue driven at about 40 percent. But in my experience, it varies widely based on the size of the business, and the maturity and spend of their marketing mix.

The more balanced the marketing spend is for the various channels — such as social, email, video, display ads — the lower natural search performance will be as a percentage of the whole, especially as the other channels mature and perform.

I’ve seen businesses that drove 75 percent of their traffic and sales via natural search. This level of dependence on SEO is dangerous because a single algorithm update or SEO-impacting technical glitch could decimate your revenue stream. However, even a business with a mature marketing mix and a site truly search-engine optimized should drive 15 to 25 percent of its traffic and revenue via natural search.

Fortunately, SEO is also one of the least expensive marketing channels in terms of direct and recurring spend. Advertising stops sending referrals when you turn it off. But SEO involves enhancements, which should also be transparent to or beneficial to your shoppers, that improve the site’s ability to drive shoppers from natural search from that time forward. Consequently, while not free as many claim, SEO’s cost is rooted in the time it takes to plan and execute the improvements to your site.

Seemingly every couple of months someone will claim that SEO is dead. That’s certainly true with individual tactics that seek to gain a faster advantage in search results — essentially sneaky tricks or cheating. For example, the very old practice of hiding white text on a page with a white background has long been stamped out. Likewise posting volumes of low-value “articles” or “press releases” filled with over-optimized links to your site in repositories for other sites to use as free content no longer has any SEO value.

However, ethical SEO isn’t about tricks, short-term gains, and taking risks. Ethical SEO is what marketing has become: creating compelling content that shoppers value so much that they share and link to it. When combined with the technical and architectural components of designing and developing a site that is optimal for natural search, ethical SEO is an ever-changing discipline that will only die when consumers stop searching.

[Source:-Practical Ecommerce]

4 Simple Blogging Platforms You Should Know About

you don’t already know, content marketing is one of the most affordable and effective means of getting your brand out there. And in an age where the internet is increasingly dominated by social networks, is it still worth it to launch a blog? The answer may vary, but some people believe social networks have made blogging stronger, because they deliver content to more people.

Nowadays, creating a blog is a really easy thing to do, as there are services for all tastes and objectives. In addition, today’s major platforms offer numerous features, giving users the options to provide any kind of service.

Among the many tips necessary to launch a successful blog, choosing the right platform is important. WordPress, Medium and other platforms are quite well-known, but there are several other free options you should know about. Check out these four simple to use, alternative blogging platforms that will improve your content marketing strategy:

Pancake.io

Very simple and straightforward, Pancake.io is powered by Dropbox. To use it, simply drop a Markdown-formatted content file into the Dropbox folder the app creates for your site. Those files can use .md, .txt or .markdown as an extension.

If you are not familiar with Markdown, the default template comes with demo content, so you can get the gist of it before you get started.

Commaful

Formerly known as Pencil, Commaful is a blogging platform clearly dedicated to the new generation of millennials. It makes the reading experience much easier and intuitive, as stories there are shown in slides with character count limits.

With these engaging visuals and easy to read format, Commaful is a great option for those who want to share short stories in a new and more visual way.

Postach.io

Dubbed “the easiest way to blog,” Postach.io is a truly innovative blogging platform. Built by the people behind Evernote, it heavily relies on this system to function – in fact, it lives on Evernote.

In order to use Postach.io, users simply need to have Evernote installed and connect a notebook to Postach.io’s platform. Then, any notes inside that notebook that have the tag “published” will be posted, right after Evernote is synced. Easy as 1-2-3.

Pen.io

Pen.io system is quite different from what we are used to. Its sign up requires no personal information at all – you just need to choose a URL and establish a password. With that, your own page on Pen.io is created. Unlike other platforms, each page is really a single page, as there no individual posts.

Every time you want to add a new “post”, simply update your page or create a new one. To update your page, just go to yoururl.pen.io/edit and make your changes. It supports images as well which, to be uploaded, can just be dragged to the page.

[Source:-Tech co]

4 Social Analytics Tools You Can’t Do Without

Social Media Analytics

Websites analytics are well known, and every marketing blog seems to devote a few posts to Google Analytics, Piwik, Clicky and others.

However, data from your social channels is not less important than what comes from your website — in fact, the analysis social interactions and traffic is vital for a good marketing strategy because it indicates the interaction patterns of your audience on the channel, what they are interested in and what you could work on to increment it.

As precious as this data is, I selected 4 social analytics tools (that I personally tested) for this post that will help you get the most out of your channels with no extra effort.

1. Followerwonk (Twitter)

URL: https://moz.com/followerwonk/

In its free version, this tool by MOZ allows you to search for Twitter users and find influencers, followers, and other helpful statistics. In other words, you can do 2 things for free:

  • Analyze users a Twitter profile follows
  • Analyze the followers of that profile

The good news is that you can do that also with our own account! The screenshot below shows the report I obtained when I looked up my own Twitter profile:

image: http://cdn.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/followerwonk-overview.png.png

Followerwonk Twitter Profile Data Overview and Map

Followerwonk shows me some profile stats and my Social Authority (39 in my case), then it gives me a world map with the location of my followers, so I have an overview of their geolocation and I can decide if I want to use this information to create culturally diverse content.

I’m also given an overview of the times of the day my followers are mostly active, so I can know when to publish content for better visibility (6 PM for me).

Other data in the report include: keyword/word cloud of my followers’ interests (for example: marketing, blogger, social media), locations per keyword (example: US, UK, India, Italy, China), age and gender demographics, and distribution of social authority among your followers. All this data can help better targeting your marketing efforts.

The other tool is the Twitter profile and bio search. If I search for profiles talking about “digital marketing”, I get a list — ordered by followers and social authority — of users with similar interests. This is a good tool to use when you want to find influencers and professional contacts. Here is an example:

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/followerwonk-searches-1024×538.png.png

Followerwonk Search by Keyword or Topic

Recommended for YouWebcast, January 26th: Why and How to Hack Growth for Your SaaS with Conversion Rate Optimization

My advice is to start with high social authority but approachable users rather than VIPs, unless you can touch upon topics you know they’re really interested about and you have something to offer that they don’t already know.

You can look up max 50 profiles a day and up to 100 keyword searches a day.

2. SimplyMeasured

URL: http://simplymeasured.com/free-social-media-tools/

image: http://cdn.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/simplymeasured-tools-1024×537.png.png

SimplyMeasured Tools

SimplyMeasured offers a range of free social media analytics tools about all major social networks — Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Google+ — plus tools that connect to Google Analytics to find out how social media impact your website performance.

Here is an example report for my character blog EileenSON.org — I used the Google Analytics tool provided by SimplyMeasured to analyze the social impact of this blog:

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/simplymeasured-eileenson-analysis-1024×555.png.png

SimplyMeasured Twitter Analysis Example

If you choose the Facebook page analysis tool, you will get a report of the engagement and performance of your page for the last two weeks, how your content is faring and how engaged your audience is. The tool works with pages up to 150,000 likes.

All these tools are available after signing up for a free SimplyMeasured report and send a pay-with-a-tweet app tweet in lieu of payment.

3. Cyfe

URL: http://www.cyfe.com/

The tool has a simple dashboard with settings, users, and widgets — which are the core of the tool: there’s a widget for each social network you want to monitor.

Register a free account, go to your dashboard and click on Add Widget (the 4-squares icon on the top bar, next to the dashboard’s name, “Dashboard di Luana Spinetti” in my example below) and add the ones you want. In this example, I added widgets for my Facebook page and Twitter account:

image: http://cdn2.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/cyfe-dashboard-1024×517.png.png

Cyfe Dashboard

There are various widget categories you can choose from, not just social media: blogging and advertising are also included.

This is a very good tool for multiple account management, all free, so definitely a must-have among your analytics suites.

4. Klout

URL: https://klout.com/

I already wrote about Klout and how to use it to generate blog post ideas, but here I want to focus on its analytics features.

Under the Measure tab, Klout lets you have an overview of your performance across the major social networks and it gives you a score based on engagement, frequency of posting and an analysis of topics by in-content keywords or tags. On the sidebar, Klout also shows you a graph of your contributions per social network — that is, where you are mostly active overall.

Also under the Measure tab is the list of Expert Topics, ordered by rank, that you can use to target most of your marketing efforts and that you can offer more often on your blog and social channels.

The Explore tab gives you an insight into what content is relevant to your channel and it also gives suggestions on what experts you could get in touch. It’s a good idea to take the suggested content under this tab in consideration, because Klout calculated how much interest your audience may have in these topics. See the Disney Channel title in the example below, and Klout’s On Target label for it:

image: http://cdn.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/klout-topics-1024×508.png.png

Klout Explore Topics

Klout definitely provides plenty of data and suggestions to use for marketing and the development of your website.

Other Tools

Google Analytics is still your friend, whether you run it from SimplyMeasured or from your GA Dashboard. It’s all free and data is known to be reliable, so it’s good to exploit this tool.

Also, make use of social networks’ own analytics, like Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics and Pinterest Analytics. These suites come free to all platform users, and sometimes they also make their API available to create customized widgets for your website.

[Source:-B2C]

8 SEO Trends You Need to Pay Attention to in 2017

8 SEO Trends You Need to Pay Attention to in 2017

A new year means new SEO speculation and trends. While there are some components of search engine optimization that have worked for several years and will continue to work, there will always be new trends that you need to shift your focus to.

One of the most frequent questions I’m asked via direct message on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram is, “What’s new in terms of SEO?” It’s a constantly changing landscape that never sits idle long. Here are eight trends to be aware of as we start 2017.

1. HTTPS is no longer just an option.

HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) keeps data exchanged between your user’s computer and your website secure. Consumers are much more internet savvy than they were a few years ago, and now expect nothing less than a secure experience when visiting a website. The cost to switch to HTTPS is minimal and aside from the security benefits, Google has confirmed it’s a ranking signal. This guide explains the process very well.

Related: 4 Dumb SEO Tactics That Will Get Your Site Penalized

2. Long-form content will continue to perform well in the search results.

Long-form content, which I consider to be more than 2,000 words, has been shown to perform better in the search results. It’s something that many marketers adopted a couple years ago and it’s still the “sweet-spot” for those looking to rank organically and provide the value needed to convert website visitors into leads, sales and revenue.

3. Social media will be an even larger referral traffic goldmine.

Think about how much activity and engagement occurs on social media daily. Products and services are being discovered on social media, consumers are turning to social media when they need customer support and brands are active on multiple platforms daily — it’s a major source of quality referral traffic.

4. Home-based voice search will increase.

Google Home and Echo by Amazon allow consumers to search for anything they want without lifting a finger — literally. You can get the answers to almost anything, and these services will continue to evolve and add new features. You can already request an Uber and order pizza from Domino’s. I have a feeling we are going to see this technology grow rapidly this year, giving local businesses a new way to be found.

Related: SEO Growth Hacking Techniques to Scale Your Business

5. Google will show more love to Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP).

It’s no secret that Google is a fan of AMP. Webpages load instantly, therefore providing a much better user experience. Here’s an explanation directly from the AMP open source website: “AMP is a way to build web pages for static content that render fast. AMP in action consists of three different parts: AMP HTML is HTML with some restrictions for reliable performance and some extensions for building rich content beyond basic HTML. The AMP JS library ensures the fast rendering of AMP HTML pages. The Google AMP Cache can be used to serve cached AMP HTML pages.”

6. UX (user experience) will continue to provide trickle down benefits.

There are several benefits of providing a pleasant user experience that have a direct impact on your SEO. Visitors stay on your website longer and engage with more of your content, which reduces your bounce rate. This also increases the average time on site and odds of a conversion occurring, or at the very least a social share or follow.

7. Mobile-first strategies have become a necessity.

With so much traffic coming from mobile devices, it really causes you to think about the mobile user first when designing page layouts and offers. The good thing is that there is no question — mobile traffic percentages continue to grow. There will always be businesses that just don’t see a large percentage of mobile traffic. Take this chemical storage building web page for example — the majority of their traffic is going to come from a desktop user in an office setting. They have a mobile friendly contact option, which is good, but a full-on redesign isn’t as crucial as it would be for a consumer e-commerce website.

Related: These 9 SEO Tips Are All You’ll Ever Need to Rank in Google

8. Links will continue to be a by-product of excellent content.

Links aren’t going anywhere — they are still a key ranking signal. Rather than stress about how to secure them, create content that is so good that people share it and link to it without you having to ask. Infographics and detailed case studies and reports will tend to perform better than standard blog posts. There are infographics my agency did years ago for brands that continue to acquire them links every week naturally.

[Source:-Entrepreneur]

10 things you might not know about Apple’s AirPods

Apple fans, we have good news and bad news. The bad news is that if you want to get your hands on Apple’s hot new truly wireless earbuds anytime soon, it’s the same old story. You can either keep your eyes glued to one of several available AirPods inventory tracking websites, or you can pay a bit of a premium and order them on Amazon. The good news is that if you’re among the thousands upon thousands of people who have already managed to score a pair of AirPods, we’re going to show you some cool features that have been hiding under your nose — or rather, in your ears — this whole time.

You can pair AirPods with any Bluetooth device. Many people are under the impression that AirPods use special wireless technology enabled by Apple’s W1 chip, and they only work with iPhones and iPads. This is a classic example of Apple’s marketing magic sending the wrong message. The W1 is cool and it simplifies the pairing process with compatible Apple devices, but AirPods are Bluetooth headphones. That’s right, regular old Bluetooth headphones. They can be paired with any Bluetooth device.

You can see the AirPods’ remaining charge in Control Center. With your AirPods connected to your iPhone, swipe up from the bottom of any screen to open the Control Center, then swipe over to the music tab. Tap on your AirPods and you’ll see the remaining charge.

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You can see the AirPods’ remaining charge on the battery widget. Add the battery widget to your iPhone’s widgets page and you’ll always be a tap and a swipe away from knowing exactly how much juice is left in your AirPods. If you don’t see them listed in the widget right after you add it to your widgets page, tap the “show more” link on the widget.

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You can see remaining charge in your AirPods and your case by opening the case next to your iPhone. If you have an Apple device equipped with the W1 chip (iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus only, for now) you can see the remaining charge in your AirPods and the carrying case simply by opening the case next to your phone. You’ll then see a little pop up that looks like this:

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You can see the AirPods’ remaining charge on your Apple Watch. Have an Apple Watch? As long as your AirPods are connected to your iPhone, you can see the remaining charge in your AirPods by swiping up from the bottom of your Watch’s home screen and then tapping the battery button.

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You can rename your AirPods. Open the Settings app on your iPhone and then tap Bluetooth. Tap the “i” icon next to your AirPods while they’re connected, and then on the next page tap the “Name” field.

You can change the double-tap function on AirPods. On that same screen within the AirPods settings, you’ll see a section titled “double-tap on AirPods.” Beneath that, you can change the setting so that a double-tap on an AirPod will play/pause/answer/hang up instead of waking Siri. You can also turn double-tap off completely.

You can transfer voice calls from your iPhone to your AirPods automatically. One last time on the same screen in the Settings app, make sure “Automatic Ear Detection” is toggled to on. As long as it is, you can move a voice call from your iPhone to your AirPods simply by placing one of them in your ear.

You can adjust the volume on your AirPods using the Apple Watch’s digital crown. This is an awesome tip for AirPods users who also have an Apple Watch. Open the Music app on your Watch while music is streaming to your AirPods and you can increase or decrease the volume on your AirPods simply by twisting the digital crown in either direction.

No, the AirPods don’t feature contactless wireless charging. Apple’s AirPods design is fantastic, but there’s a misconception out there that the charging case features contactless wireless charging. Sadly, that’s simply not true. The metal tip at the bottom of each AirPod stem is more than just a sleek design feature. Those metal tips also touch charging contacts when the AirPods are seated in the case.

[Source:-BGR]