Quiz: The Super-Difficult Website Speed Quiz

Users expect websites to load quickly. As a result, companies like Amazon and Target spend millions of dollars optimizing their sites to make them load as fast as possible because there is a direct correlation between site speed and conversions.

Websites typically don’t have load bars, so a user waiting for a site to load cannot know that it will be one more second or even that the site will load at all.

The best load time for a website is 0 seconds, an instantaneous load. However, that’s not possible with current technology. So how fast is fast enough? What will users really accept? Take our website speed quiz and see if you know…

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The Secret to Creating Compelling Product Packaging Designs

Your product’s packaging plays a vital role in determining its success in a highly competitive market. For example, one survey found that 70 per cent of consumers said that their purchasing decisions are influenced by well-designed packaging. So whether you’re packaging your product in plastic pouches, boxes, bottles or wrappers, you should follow packaging design best practices to increase the likelihood your products fly off the shelves!

Product Packaging Design Top Tips

There are several steps to take to ensure that your product stands out from competitors. For example, your product’s packaging needs to appeal to your target audience, showcase brand identity and portray the product inside honestly. Your product packaging design should also communicate clear messages with easy-to-read fonts and suitable colours.

Here are our top tips for creating compelling product packaging designs that result in more sales:

Know your target audience

Before you start the design process, you must know who your target customers are. By doing this, you can develop a packaging design that appeals to them. Often, different demographics prefer different types of designs. Does your audience want trendy packaging consisting of bright colours and elaborate graphics? Or is your audience more functional in their design preferences, favouring classic and timeless packaging? While it is not always the case, the former design is generally preferred by teens and young adults, and the latter design is typically favoured by adults and the elderly.

Showcase brand identity

Your packaging should showcase your brand’s identity. As a result, you need to consider the messages your brand wishes to send to consumers through product packaging. For example, if your brand is high-end, you must communicate this in your packaging by creating a sleek design with a luxurious feel printed on high-quality packaging materials. Consumers will make their own judgements about the perceived value of your product, and packaging plays a key role. Consequently, product packaging that looks cheap will make consumers think your product is low-quality.

Be wary of fonts and colours

If the goal is to capture the attention of as many consumers as possible, you may be tempted to create product packaging full of elaborate fonts and bright, eye-catching colours. However, this strategy may backfire. Designs that are too busy, garish and overcrowded may overwhelm consumers, making it harder for them to digest key information. If they cannot quickly gauge the purpose and benefits of your product, they are likely to pick up a competitor’s product instead.

Maximise shelf impact

Whether your product is going to be stacked on a physical shelf or listed on a website, you need to maximise its physical and digital shelf impact. The best way to do this is to make your packaging stand out from competitors. The packaging design should be clear and eye-catching without being too overcrowded. The purpose of the product should be clear, especially because the average consumer spends a maximum of four seconds eyeing a product before deciding whether to purchase it or not.

Study competitor designs

Whenever a brand is creating a new product, it is good practice to conduct competitor analysis. What works about their product packaging designs? What is their design missing? Studying competitor packaging designs gives your brand the opportunity to learn from their mistakes, allowing your product packaging to stand out from the crowd.

Be mindful of sustainability

A growing number of consumers want products in sustainable, eco-friendly packaging. One survey found that almost 70 per cent of consumers believe it is important that the products they purchase are in recyclable packaging. Additionally, more than half of consumers take sustainable packaging into consideration when choosing a product. These statistics show that brands can differentiate themselves from less environmentally conscious competitors by selling products in sustainable packaging.

Be honest and authentic

Over the last few years, honesty and authenticity in branding have become incredibly important. Now more than ever, brands need to communicate to their customers that their products can be trusted and relied upon. The only way your brand is going to be successful is if your customers trust you. For this reason, the design of your product’s packaging must communicate that your brand is trustworthy and the product inside meets consumer expectations. Some brands even take it a step further by injecting humour into their packaging, often in the form of extreme honesty. However, this strategy isn’t always appropriate.

Final Thoughts

Creating compelling product packaging that sets your brand apart from competitors is no easy task. The market is incredibly competitive in many industries, and getting new products noticed is a significant challenge. However, by appealing to your product’s target audience through sleek design and clear and honest messaging, brands can differentiate themselves from their competitors and increase their market share in the process.

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A Complete Guide for HR Managing Hybrid Teams in Marketing Agencies

A significantly high number of businesses were forced to rearrange their operations because of the Covid-19 pandemic and thousands of workers had to step out of the office and adapt to a remote working environment.

Although things are slowly returning to normal, many companies started to implement a hybrid work model in which their employees can opt to work part-time from home and part-time in the office.
Although this could improve the work-life balance, it has still brought the challenge of managing hybrid teams in marketing agencies into focus.

Marketing agencies are often inundated with time-consuming processes, duplication of work, and miscommunication, and these issues can become even more exacerbated as the marketing teams work remotely.

However, hybrid work is here to stay, so below, we provide a mini-guide for HR managing hybrid teams in marketing agencies and how they can ensure the business is moving in the right direction.

Build Trust and Inclusivity

One of the main challenges when managing hybrid marketing teams is building trust among the scattered team members. It is very difficult to create boundaries of respect and impartiality when most people aren’t present in the same space for most of the working week.

A good way to overcome this challenge is for the marketing leader to try to involve every team member in online or in-person meetings, which can significantly help toward building a sense of belonging and safety. It gives the managers a way to recognize the employees’ efforts, whether they are working remotely or in the office.

Monitor Your Employees’ Work

You want to build trust and inclusivity when managing a hybrid marketing team, but to hold remote employees to high work standards and ensure that assignments are completed on time, you must monitor their work. Since monitoring their work isn’t that easy when they are not under the same roof in the office, you might want to consider using a monitoring software for employees that can ensure that mistakes and misunderstandings are avoided, that deadlines are met, and check how everyone on the marketing team is doing separately.

This type of software solution will tell you exactly how each employee is using their time, you’ll be able to track and analyze their efficiency and behavior. By collecting this useful data, you can also establish good strategies on how to create an even more productive and efficient team.

Offer Flexibility

The marketing landscape is continuously undergoing significant transformations and the HR department that manages hybrid teams in marketing agencies must always be prepared for the changing circumstances and undertake measures to facilitate flexibility and independence.

HR reps should always make it their mission to provide flexibility to everyone on the team by allowing them to select a schedule that works both for the agency and the individual team members.
What is even more important is for every member of the team to clearly understand that progress and results are more important than when and where they work.

Build a Sense of Accountability

HR reps can achieve accountability by working closely with staff and providing continuous support and coaching. So, it’s crucial that employees know their exact job descriptions.
As a result, HR representatives should be clear about setting priorities, clearly articulating goals, and focusing on productivity when managing hybrid teams. In this way, the team members will be able to build commitment and focus on accomplishing shared goals no matter what the working schedules look like.


As we mentioned above, marketing is a challenging field, and miscommunication in hybrid marketing teams is one of the biggest concerns. For this reason, HR should strive to establish good communication, transparency, and collaboration rules and guidelines among remote and in-person team members. Feedback is just as important as it collectively boosts efficiency and eliminates obstacles related to the job.

The HR departments should pay close attention to the personal goals of employees and try to show empathy and genuine care for everyone’s wellbeing and satisfaction. Hybrid team members may worry about not being included in spontaneous workplace discussions and activities and this can lead to them feeling unappreciated and less valued. So, making remote and in-person employees feel seen and included is an important skill that HR reps should have.  

Final Thoughts

The HR department managing hybrid teams faces many diverse challenges but most of those can be easily overcome by implementing the above-mentioned tips. Building trust and inclusivity, using employee monitoring solutions, and ensuring good communication and collaboration among in-house and remote workers can be the key to the success of the hybrid working model in the marketing field.

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10 Great Places to Find Music for Videos

Creating videos for social media or to embed on your site can be a fun and creative way to promote your brand or business. More importantly, time spent on a page is a significant SEO ranking factor, so providing a video to watch is of enormous benefit.

However, coming up with the music for your videos can be challenging. You want something catchy that fits your video’s tone but don’t want to violate copyright laws.

Music licensing can be tricky, but if you’re smart about it and know what license your needs fall into, things will go swimmingly. Many different types of licenses cover differing budgets or use cases.

Public Domain: Public domain music is music that is not protected by copyright and can be used by anyone for any purpose. This includes traditional folk songs, classical music, and works released explicitly into the public domain.

Creative Commons: Creative Commons is a license that allows you to use someone else’s work for free, as long as you give credit to the creator. There are several Creative Commons licenses, so read the terms before using any music in your videos.

Royalty-Free: Royalty-free music is music you can use without paying royalties. This means you can use the music in your videos without getting permission from the artist or paying for a license. You can usually find royalty-free music on stock audio websites.


10 Places to Find Music for Videos

Below you’ll find the ten most common places to find music for your videos, including Youtube, Instagram, and TikTok videos.

1. YouTube Audio Library

The first place to look for music is YouTube’s Audio Library. This is an excellent resource for finding free, high-quality music for your videos. You can search by genre, instrument, mood, or duration and preview the tracks before downloading them.

You can use music from the YouTube Audio Library in your Instagram and Youtube videos. Just make sure you follow the copyright guidelines specified on the YouTube website.

2. AudioJungle

AudioJungle from EnvatoMarket is an excellent resource for finding high-quality music for your videos. You can search by genre or mood and listen to previews of the songs before you download them.

AudioJungle offers a variety of paid plans that give you access to more features and higher-quality audio files. Prices start at $12 per month for the basic plan and go up to $48 per month for the premium plan.

3. Free Music Archive

The Free Music Archive is another resource to search for free music. It’s a little more eclectic than the YouTube Audio Library, so you’ll find a broader range of genres and styles here. 

However, all of the music on the site is licensed under Creative Commons, so you’re free to use it in your videos. In addition, you can search by genre or artist and even listen to previews of the songs before you download them.

4. Incompetech

The next website to find royalty-free music for videos is Incompetech. You can search by genre, mood, or instrument, but also read about music licenses. Besides, the site has a handy “music for video” section that features tracks that are specifically designed for use in videos.

Incompetech is free for users, but the company still earns money on display ads and Patreon donations.

5. Bensound

Bensound is a website where you can find high-quality music for your social media videos. It has a library of music that you can choose from, and you can also create custom playlists. The site is easy to use, and you can search for music by genre, mood, or artist. 

All of the music on the site is licensed under Creative Commons, so you’re free to use it in your videos. Prices start from approximately $12/mo subscription, or you can pay $34 per track.

6. ccMixter

ccMixter was created as a Creative Commons Project. It is a collaboration platform for musicians who want to promote their work. The site also has a handy “music for video” section that features tracks that are specifically designed for use in videos.

ccMixter offers a variety of paid plans that give you access to more features and higher-quality audio files. Prices start at $12 per month for the basic plan and go up to $48 per month for the premium plan.

7. Epidemic Sound

Epidemic Sound is a music company with a rich history dating back to 2009. They provide high-quality music for social media videos, and their library is constantly expanding. Epidemic Sound was founded by three friends working in the music industry. They were frustrated with the quality of stock music available, so they decided to create their own. 

Epidemic Sound has since become a go-to source for high-quality music. In recent years, the company has been working hard to expand its library and make it easier for people to find the perfect song for their videos. As a result, they now have over 30,000 tracks available.

Epidemic Sound’s monthly subscription service starts at $15/month. This gives you access to all of the site’s music, and you can download as many tracks as you want.

8. Musopen

Musopen is a perfect website for finding classical music for your videos. The site has various tracks to choose from; you can filter them by composer, orchestra, period, mood, length, and more. In addition, all of the music on the site is licensed under Creative Commons, so you’re free to use it in your videos.

Musopen offers a subscription plan that gives you access to high-quality music for your social media videos. You can choose from three different pricing plans, and each plan comes with a different number of downloads per month.

9. Jamendo Music

Jamendo is a website where you can find royalty-free music for your social media videos. The music on the website ranges from rock to electronica, and there is something for everyone. 

You can either browse the music by genre or use the search function to find the perfect song for your video.

10. StoryBlocks

StoryBlocks is a website created by two brothers, Aaron and Evan Sharp. It has a royalty-free music library with various music genres to choose from. You can find everything from pop to classical on this website. 

There is also a section of the website devoted to social media-friendly tracks. This means you can find music perfect for your videos without worrying about copyright issues.


Featured image via Unsplash.

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4 SEO Tips to Improve Your Website in 2022

About 53% of all the website traffic arrives from organic search, so it’s time to grab your opportunity by reviewing and improving your SEO strategy. Investing in SEO for your website makes you more visible to your target audience and it’s a valuable investment. This way, you can grow your brand and attract more visitors.

Everybody wants to be ranked higher on search engines, but this is now more challenging than ever. It’s very important to do it right because, without a proper strategy, your business doesn’t have a chance to flourish. So, follow these four tips for improving your SEO strategy and watch your business flourish.

Don’t forget about local SEO

Local SEO enables smaller and medium-size businesses to grow and allows them to target people from their area. For example, if you own a hair salon and optimize a website for local search, whenever somebody searches “hair salons near me’’, you would appear high on Google.

This helps your company to reach out to your target audience near you. It’s not hard to optimize either, because all you need to do is backlinking to local websites and popular events, and use phrases specific to your location in the keywords.

Local SEO has many benefits for your business. It enhances traffic and encourages people to visit your website, which leads to more sales. When potential customers go to your website, it improves your conversion rate. Many people wish to have their favorite shop near them rather than searching the internet and having to purchase online.

You can save money by optimizing for local search because most people look at local products and services, using the “near me’’ choice. This way, you reduce advertisement costs like banners, pamphlets, or local TV commercials.

Your local SEO agency can help you in optimizing your local SEO. For example, if your business is in Melbourne, search for a Melbourne SEO agency and they will help you develop your SEO easily and efficiently.

Consider SEO hosting

With SEO hosting, you can protect your website in case you’re using multiple websites for interlinking. This way, you will have the safety and protection for your website, and control all your digital footprints.

It lets you make your domain names unique and separate from each other. It also has features that allow you to manage your IPs, like the site and network tools, backup, FTP and email accounts, and others.

The purpose of SEO hosting is to increase your searchability and link value in search engines. If you use traditional web hosting, the search engines will penalize you quickly.

Your website has to look unique and on different C Class IPs. Being unique and separated from others will have more value. SEO hosting offers you IPs from various C classes and lets you manage many IP addresses for different websites from one single account.

With everything interlinked and on the same IP range, search engines recognize that everything is owned by the same company. Luckily, SEO hosting dismisses this risk with multiple IPs.

This is more affordable than dealing with different web hosting providers and you can use unique name servers for all of your websites, keeping them independent from each other and leaving no track for search engines to ban you.

Use internal links and backlinking

Internal links help you connect one page of your website to another, and help visitors to go from page to page. The source page is the one you should link from, you link to the target page, and the keyword should be a suggested anchor test.

High ranking is crucial for every website. Getting backlinks can be the best and fastest way to see results in rankings and is a very important part of your SEO strategy. If you don’t have an SEO or content marketing team searching for backlinks possibilities, you are missing out on the opportunity to improve your position on Google.

Moreover, you should collaborate with respectable publications in your industry. This will help you earn press coverage, have authoritative referring domains, and add backlinks that will contribute to your website authority.

Optimize FAQ sections

You should mark up frequently asked questions with structured data because this will lead to more traffic to your website. Having a FAQ schema is important. It’s not that hard to qualify for it and use it on your website, and you can gain a lot from it.

You can use FAQ pages to get links and answer all the relevant questions so that your visitors would what you and your company are all about.

When optimizing your FAQ sections, focus on the first two because on average, they will appear on the search engine most. Strategically implemented FAQ schema will maximize positive outcomes.

Final words

Implementing these SEO tips will improve your website significantly, but don’t do it all at once. Instead, start slowly. Pick one or two tips and start from there, upgrading in time.

Don’t forget to prioritize quality content, as you can outrank your competitors even if they have a higher domain ranking than you.

Remember that it takes time and effort to create a high-performing website that will thrive. By following these strategies, you are on the right track to success.

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20 Best New Websites, July 2022

Welcome to our guide to the best new websites this month. If subtle, minimal sites are your thing, either look away now or prepare to have your preconceptions challenged because this month, we are going maximalist.

Lots of elements fill up the screen, lots of color, lots of big fonts, lots of illustration, and plenty of in-your-face personality. This is a tricky style to get right: if elements are not chosen and placed well, the result is simply annoying clutter. If done well, the result can be impactful and memorable.

[And Happy Independence Day to all of our American readers!]


screenagers & the incredible machine

screenagers & the incredible machine’s site puts illustration front and center, creating a look that evokes various mystic ideas. It sounds strange, but it works.


Anna Jóna

This prelaunch teaser site for Anna Jóna café and cinema has an elegant yet modern feel.



This site for Hardpops (alcoholic) ice pops takes its cue from the product flavors, and the bright, fruity colors give it a real zing.


Daniel Spatzek

Daniel Spatzek’s portfolio site takes the rules-are-made-to-be-broken approach. The result has attitude and a nice touch of humor.


Ander Agency

Plenty of color, large type, and illustration make a bold statement for Ander Agency’s single-page site.


Pretty Damn Quick

Colorful illustration on this site for Pretty Damn Quick’s Shopify app creates an impression of friendliness about the company and ease of use of the product itself.


Know Your Beetle

Know Your Beetle is a showcase page for Kaploom creative studio. Color and type combinations make a big impact.



While many of the sites featured here have a sense of fun about them, WTFFF tackles a somber subject: online sexual abuse and harassment. Artwork and audio create an immersive experience in which five young people share their experiences with the aim of helping others.


BelArosa Chalet

Full-screen illustrations with a hint of vintage style create an ideal impression of what future guests can expect from the currently under construction BelArosa Chalet.



The color scheme on the Paradam site is on the pastel end of the scale, but there is still lots going on to entrance the eye.


Tilton Group

The scrolling color panels on the Tilton Group site are a thing to behold.



Fresco uses a standard layout design, but the colors and quarter-circles instantly lift it.


Museum of Pink Art

Museum of Pink Art is an immersive experience celebrating the color pink. Undoubtedly worth a virtual wander around.


Icons by Menu

OK, this somewhat more minimalist site slipped through the net, but Icons by Menu is so pleasing to look at and use that we had to include it.



With an illustration that could be ideally at home on an Arthur C. Clarke book jacket and that rich, deep red background, this site for Glare DB is a world away from what might be expected.


Alex Beige

While the overall style and accent illustrations are pleasing on Alex Beige’s site, the Our Team section is guaranteed to raise a smile and stick in the user’s mind.



Careful spacing means busy elements (like on scroll animated illustrations) don’t become overwhelming on the Snickerdoodle site.


Grisly’s Cosmic Black

The site for Grisly’s Cosmic Black is fun, bright, and joyful. Plus, it’s nice to see an alcohol site going a bit further than the usual ‘drink responsibly’ and actually providing helpful links.


The Perennial

Not just floorplans and (lots of) images, but virtual walkthroughs too. The Perennial doesn’t feel like a standard office building.

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