Happy April Fools’ Day! Don’t worry, we’re not going to waste your time by making you read some nonsense that turns out to be untrue at the end. We know that you have to use your time wisely these days. But we did want to take the time to address some things that marketers should never, ever joke about, even on April Fools’ Day. Save your pranks for something else, but not these three things.

Google Analytics

That new website you had built a couple of months ago – how do you know how much traffic it’s bringing in? Which pages do visitors stay on the longest? What keywords resonate with visitors? Who the heck are your visitors anyway? All of these questions can be answered using Google Analytics. It’s absolutely critical that you track and measure data, otherwise you’re basically throwing your money away. Today’s companies may be on tight budgets, but they have more flexibility to use their money in the right places. If you see something that’s not working – even in the middle of a marketing campaign – you can adjust your budget accordingly, save money and maximize ROI.

Google Algorithms and Updates

It may sound like a joke in itself that Google’s oh-so-serious algorithm updates are named after animals you see at the zoo, but these algorithms and their respective updates are no joke. You probably already know them – Panda, Penguin and the new search algorithm Hummingbird – and they continue to have a huge impact on your website’s placement in the search engines. Although Google’s algorithm updates can be a real pain, they really do make the Internet a better place for users.

Last year was a big year for Google updates, but don’t expect the coming years to be anything less. Updates will continue to be made; some big, some small. The best approach is to build a solid website that will adapt to these changes. Relevant content, quality links, fast loading times and good keywords are just a few of the ingredients to a Panda- and Penguin-proof site.

Websites Optimized for Mobile

Anyone who tells you that your website doesn’t have to be mobile optimized isn’t feeding you valid information. Each year, more people are accessing the web through their mobile devices. While it’s true that some companies will benefit from a mobile presence more than others, you can be certain that some percentage of your target audience will be visiting your site from their smartphone or tablet. A site that accommodates your mobile audience ensures that you don’t lose leads to your competitors. Thanks to responsive design, it’s easier and more affordable than ever before to have a site that adapts to all devices.