How to Easily Create a SlideShare Presentation

How to Easily Create a SlideShare Presentation

You know how hot visual content is, and you want to jump on board to enjoy the engagement, traffic, and leads that follow. But maybe you’re not keen on writing a blog post, and you don’t have the production resources to create videos. What to do? Create a SlideShare presentation.

→ Free Download: 4 PowerPoint Presentation Templates [Access Now]

I know, I know. You may have felt personally victimized by PowerPoint sometime in your career. When you open it up, you’re hit with stark black Calibri font on a white background, killing any creative spark you may have felt. It’s daunting enough to create a 10-slide deck to report your monthly marketing metrics — never mind putting together slides that can be seen by the large volume of SlideShare users.

Well, there’s good news: Creating a SlideShare presentation in PowerPoint doesn’t have to be that daunting. With the right templates and tools at your disposal, you could easily create an engaging, visual presentation — all without fancy design programs, huge budgets, or hiring contractors.

How to Create a Stunning  SlideShare Presentation in PowerPoint

To help you make a SlideShare of your own, we’ve created some free PowerPoint presentation templates for making awesome SlideShares. That way, your presentations will look great and be a breeze to put together.

Download the free PowerPoint templates, scroll down, and we’ll walk through how to use them. When we’re done, you’ll know exactly how to create a sexy presentation that gets featured on SlideShare’s homepage. Ready? Let’s dive in.

1. Get a feel for the types of presentations you can find on SlideShare. 

Just as you’d master any other medium, it helps to consume other content in that medium to get an idea of the format and what works. Go to SlideShare.net and discover SlideShares that interest you. You can view them on the platform or download them to your computer and peruse them on your local machine. 

SlideShare Presentation Download

Here’s how to download a PowerPoint from SlideShare:

  1. Sign up for a SlideShare account.
  2. Navigate to the SlideShare presentation that you want to download.
  3. Click the button labeled “Download.”
  4. When asked if you want to clip the slide, click “Continue to download.”
  5. Click “Save File” and then confirm by clicking “OK.”

Some may not download as a .ppt file, and some may not be available to download at all. However, this method works in all other cases.

2. Decide on fonts and a color scheme. 

Before you get too caught up in the specifics of your storyline, figure out which fonts and color scheme you want to use. (If you’re using our free templates, you can skip this part.) 

When you’re choosing fonts, consider two different ones to use throughout your presentation — one for your headers and one for your body text. Your header font should be bold and eye-catching, and your body text font should be simple and easy to read. The contrast between the two will make it much easier for your SlideShare viewers to grasp your core messages. 

For your color scheme, pick a scheme that will have enough contrast between colors to make colors stand out. Whether you decide to use two, three, or four different colors in your presentation is up to you — but certain color combinations go together better than others.

Below is an example of what certain fonts and color combinations can look like. Notice how the header fonts stand out much more than the body? You can also see what different color palettes might look like: The top is monochromatic, the middle is complementary, and the bottom is analogous. 

3 combinations of header and body fonts.

3. Outline main takeaways and crucial sub-bullets.

Next up: Creating an outline for your SlideShare’s narrative. I like to treat SlideShare outlines just like I would blog posts — you decide on the working title and main takeaways first. Then, you elaborate on those sections with a few supporting points.

For each of those components (title, section headers, and a few supporting points), create a slide. Below is an example of what those slides might look like: 

Title

title slide using hubspot powerpoint template

Headers

header slide using hubspot powerpoint template

Supporting Points

supporting point slide using hubspot powerpoint template

You’ll also want to create slide placeholders for the call-to-action and conclusion slides (you don’t need to elaborate on them just yet).

Keep in mind that these slides should not be complex — just a title and maybe a few details that you want to remember down the road. No paragraphs. No supporting images. Nothing that’s not built into your template already. 

4. Fill out the body of your presentation.

Then, fill in the meat of the content — all the slides between the headers. Just make sure you’re not relying too much on text. SlideShare is a primarily visual platform — people are used to breezing through presentations. So if your presentation reads like an ebook, you should edit down the text and rely more heavily on visual content. 

Another thing to remember is to switch up your format from slide to slide. Try doing a checklist slide followed by, say, a quote slide — it keeps people on their toes as they flip through your presentation.

checklist slide in hubspot powerpoint template

quote slide in hubspot powerpoint template

5. Add introduction slides. 

After you’ve created the majority of your SlideShare presentation, head back to the start. Wonder why we didn’t begin here? It’ll be much easier to tee up the bulk of your content if you already know what that content is about. In this step, just introduce what you just wrote about — it’ll be a breeze. 

6. Wrap up the conclusion.

Then, head to the end of your SlideShare and wrap it up in a slide or two. There is nothing more jarring than going from a body slide right to a CTA slide. You only need a slide or two to conclude your presentation, but it should naturally tee up the CTA that you will have next. 

7. Add a call-to-action slide.

At the verrrrrry end of your SlideShare, you want to keep your viewers engaged by providing a call-to-action. The CTA could be about downloading an ebook, attending an event, or even just visiting your website — pretty much any CTA you’d like to include. Here are two CTA slide examples that we included in the SlideShare template:

cta slide in hubspot powerpoint template

cta slide in hubspot powerpoint template

8. Edit, edit, edit.

You’re almost there! Next, you need to go through and edit your copy and design components. Try to get another coworker — marketer or not — to give it a once over. If you need some direction, you can use our ultimate editing checklist to make sure you’re catching everything you can.

9. Add “animated slides” and clickable links.

Though it’s easy to create a presentation in PowerPoint and upload it immediately to SlideShare, not all of the same features will appear in both programs. As a result, there are two things you’ll need to add in: “animated slides” and clickable links. 

As far as slide animation goes, SlideShare does not support PowerPoint animations. This means that all of those smooth entrances you planned for your text boxes and objects go out the window once you upload your presentation to SlideShare. But, it’s easy to manually introduce new elements on a series of slides to make it seem like it’s “animated.”

Once you’ve built in your animations, you’ll also need to make sure people can actually click on the CTAs in your presentation. 

10. Upload your PDF to SlideShare.

After you’re finished with your clickable links, your presentation will be in a PDF format. At this point, you’re ready for the final step: uploading your PDF to SlideShare. When you do this, you have the option to add a description and tags, and even schedule the SlideShare to go live at a certain time. Once your SlideShare is live, you should spend some time promoting it on your blog and social media accounts, and to your email lists. (For more SlideShare promotion tips, check out this blog post.)

Just follow this process when you need to create a SlideShare presentation, and you won’t have to fear that blank PowerPoint template ever again. 

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in August 2013 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

powerpoint slides


How to Get a Google Ads Certification

How to Get a Google Ads Certification

Google Ads is one of the most effective advertising tools to get more traffic to your website, and generate more leads. In fact, most businesses see an average of 200% ROI on their Google Ad spend.

To create better, more powerful ads on Google, it can be helpful to receive a Google Ads certificate. Additionally, it’s a great resume booster.

If you’re looking to get a Google Ads certificate, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we’ve created a guide that will explain why a Google Ads certification through Google’s Skillshop is helpful, and how you can prepare and get certified.

Free Guide, Template & Planner: How to Use Google Ads for Business

What is Google Skillshop?

Google Skillshop is the home for all e-learning courses offered by Google product experts. This is where you’ll head to become Google product certified, including in Google Ads, Google Ad Manager, and Analytics Academy.

Google-Skillshop

Whether you’re a beginner looking to dive into the world of Google products or an experienced marketing professional ready to up-level your skills, you’ll find what you need in Skillshop.

Increase your knowledge in Google Ads Display, Ads Video, Shopping Ads, or even Google Ads measurement. Not sure why you’d go deeper than a working understanding of Google’s product suite? Let’s talk the “why” of getting certified, below.

Why get a Google Ads certification?

Years ago when I was applying for work, I interviewed a couple dozen people who worked in the digital marketing industry to learn about their jobs and the application process. Many emphasized the importance of getting a Google Ads certification.

The truth is that many employers search for people with this certification on LinkedIn to find employees for their marketing team. LinkedIn generally offers a talent pool of higher-quality than standard job boards like Indeed. Plus, the demand for marketers skilled in Google Ads is high, while the supply of qualifying candidates is relatively low.

Thanks to the internet, it’s easier than ever before to apply for a job with little effort, so employers are swimming in low-quality choices.

To find qualified employees, then, many hiring managers use LinkedIn’s search engine to find anyone with a Google Ads certification because it’s one of the few defining qualifications that can show proven knowledge and skill. The certification shows the hiring manager that you’re somewhat savvy about the industry.

The good news is that a lot of fresh talent don’t have a certification on their LinkedIn profile or resume since they don’t know the value of it. In other words, you can easily stand out if you get certified.

Even if you don’t want a role in PPC, the certification is still helpful for any marketer. PPC advertising, especially through Google Ads, makes up the bulk of online advertising. If you understand the principles of Google Ads, you can translate those principles to other marketing efforts.

Additionally, having an understanding of neighboring areas of marketing helps with your communication among team members, and empathy. Ultimately, having that certification under your tool belt will only make you look better to employers.

How Applicable is the Certification in the Marketing Industry?

To be fair and objective, let’s acknowledge the case against getting certified.

First, in terms of actual skill and practice, a certification isn’t entirely applicable in a real marketing role. It’s possible to score well or even perfectly on this exam without having actual experience with the platform, especially when there are exam answers online.

The exam can, at times, teach you the best answer in theory, which isn’t close to the best answer in practice.

Having been in the Google Ads platform myself, I know that a few questions are unnecessarily complicated, not applicable, or biased toward a response focused on spending as much money as possible on Google’s platform. Google makes money when you spend money on ads, regardless of whether the ad leads to a sale, so their intentions make sense.

With all that said, most of the questions are still valuable because they help you learn how to navigate the platform and make accurate calculations. You can grow a lot through preparing for this exam even if you initially have little to no knowledge of Google Ads.

You should take the test without cheating, learn from your incorrect answers, and retake it to improve. Otherwise, you may have a tough time with the platform later on, which can seem detailed and intimidating to beginners.

Here’s another huge reason why you should get certified and make sure you learn a lot during the preparation process, rather than speed through it — any decent marketing agency or department that you’d like to work for is going to test you on your understanding of terminology and pay-per-click reasoning during the application process. They’re going to find out whether you really know what you’re talking about.

Therefore, the knowledge that the exams offer does have some real-world value. That doesn’t mean you have to be a total whiz. But you should understand most of the concepts tested.

Treat the Google Ads exam as an opportunity to learn rather than a task to check-off a list. Your mindset shift will make all the difference because you’ll be learning from every question asked, while others rush through the exam just to finish it.

Topics and Exam Duration of the Google Ads Certifications

Google Ads Exam Topics

There are Google Ads certifications for different topics, including video, mobile, display, and shopping advertising. The most important version is the search advertising exam since that’s the area marketers use most often on the platform. The second most applicable Google Ads test for marketers is likely Google Ads display certification.

Google Ads Certification Exam Duration

Each exam has a different time limit, but it’s usually between 60 minutes and two hours. I’ve got a good sense for how long it actually takes since I’ve sat in a classroom with a dozen people taking the exam and have seen how quickly people finish. It usually takes 50–75% of the allotted time. A small percentage of people will use up to all the time if they’re new or focused on learning from each question.

Google Ads Certification Badges

Once you’ve passed the exam, you get a certification badge that you can show off on your LinkedIn profile. Adding this badge to your profile adds credibility and makes your profile more search-engine friendly. As mentioned, recruiters look for this certification and care about it, so you’ll be showing up more often when they search.

Google Ads Certification Training

The training resources that Google offers are a handy starting point. You can learn a lot about the testing format, style of questions, and concepts that’ll show up on the exam.

Additionally, one of the best ways to prepare for the exams is through YouTube tutorials, demonstrations, and tutorial articles. Most people are visual learners, and they will learn better when they see the platform itself with a video, rather than reading about it. That said, some blog posts have great screenshots throughout to help you better understand their tutorial.

It’s important to note — many of the resources online are overkill. It’s easy for beginners to feel overwhelmed by the details. However, try to focus on learning the fundamental principles — like what to tweak to make a big impact on performance.

If a tutorial article is 5,000 words long, then it’s covering every detail of the platform, which is too much for the certification exam.

Additionally, the exams themselves can be training tools. If you don’t pass the first time, you can learn from your incorrect answers and retake it. You can use your first attempt to get familiar with the format and duration. Reflect on why you got a question wrong so that you can remember the right answer for next time.

Some of the questions asked are recycled and randomized with different numbers. You can gain a lot of applicable math skills by learning the principles behind calculations. Unfortunately, many marketers skip learning from the exam itself and miss out on the bulk of where they can grow.

Take the exam with an attitude of learning, rather than completing.

Tips for When You’re Taking the Exam

1. Take notes.

Have printed notes on hand that you can consult quickly whenever you forget minor details here and there (don’t expect to rely on these for the entire exam, though). These notes are useful in case Google decides to implement restrictive browsing limits for exam takers in the future.

2. Plan for plenty of battery.

Make sure your computer is plugged in so it doesn’t run out of battery life while you’re taking the exam. This tip may seem obvious, but you don’t want to find yourself in that painful situation.

3. Pace yourself, while answering.

Take your time with each question. Most people end up with extra time. Remember — it’s a marathon, not a sprint. You’ll be answering multiple-choice questions for at least an hour.

4. Practice self-care, pre-test.

Hydrate. Get enough sleep. Some people overlook simple things, like making sure you have enough water and food before the exam, which can affect brain performance. Foods high in omega-3 are great for brain power.

Ultimately, getting a Google Ads certification is a worthwhile investment for your career growth. Digital marketing employers look for any valid evidence that you’re above entry-level applicants.

5. Don’t rush through without understanding the topics.

While it’s possible to pass the exam without understanding many of the principles, you’ll be doing yourself a disservice in the long run. Treat the exam as a learning process and an opportunity to shore up your knowledge and application of PPC terms and methodology because it’ll help you during the job interview, and in your career.

You don’t have to know everything about Google Ads since real-world experience can help you learn. But the knowledge you gain in preparing for this exam will give you a head start.

kit for how to use Google Ads

How to Successfully Migrate a Website Without Harming SEO [Checklist]

How to Successfully Migrate a Website Without Harming SEO [Checklist]

An outdated website won’t represent your brand well.

Web design experts recommend a site redesign every 2-3 years to keep up with web standards and design trends. This can often be accomplished with a simple facelift or re-skin. However, in some cases, you may be up against a site migration.

Access Now: 21 SEO Myths to Leave Behind in 2021

The end result of a site migration may include a cleaner interface, a new or improved user experience, an easier editing experience, and more. However, the choice to migrate your website should not be taken lightly. If executed poorly, you could end up with status code errors, negatively impacted SEO performance, and even irritated website visitors.

Why might you migrate a website?

Here are the circumstances in which you might need a site migration over a simple redesign:

  • You need to move your site’s location from one server to another.
  • You are changing the CMS platform your site operates on.
  • You are changing your domain name or URLs.
  • You need to make major changes to your site’s architecture (not just aesthetics).

Website migrations can be done on your own or professionally. (For example, HubSpot offers migration services to customers switching to HubSpot’s CMS.)

If you’re considering a website migration, keep in mind that you must leave yourself time to prepare and execute. Migration specialists usually take about three weeks, so plan accordingly. Now, let’s get into the details of migrating a website.

Pre-Migration

1. Crawl the existing site.

A website crawler retrieves the URLs and markup on your site, “seeing” this information similarly to how Google would.

Performing a crawl gives you a starting point for your URL mapping (more on that later) as well as a list to refer to in case something gets lost in translation. You can crawl your website yourself with a third-party tool such as Screaming Frog.

2. Record your benchmarks.

In some cases, analytics data can get erased during a site migration, and this historical benchmarks can be valuable, so it’s best to retain it.

You should also take the time to review your analytics and ensure you know how visitors currently navigate the site and which pages are your most valuable. This context can help inform your redesign and site architecture decisions.

3. Map your URLs.

If you’re making major changes to the URLs on your site, you’ll need redirections in place to guide Google and your website users from your old URLs to your new URLs. 

  • From a usability standpoint, if a page no longer exists, you don’t want your users to get a 404 status code error. Instead, they should be guided to the page that has taken the old page’s place. 
  • Improper redirects can mean a big hit against your SEO. They tell search engines and visitors of your website that a page has changed, whether it’s been removed, or no longer exists. They also tell search engines what new pages have replaced old ones.
  • From an SEO perspective, you don’t want to lose all of the history, backlinks, and (in essence) “authority” that the old page built up. A redirect tells Google where to attribute those signals instead. 

To get redirects implemented, you must first strategize by mapping your URLs. This involves building a spreadsheet with two columns: one for the old URL and one for the corresponding new URL. 

Don’t be concerned if there aren’t “perfect” replacements for every piece of content. Just do the best you can to direct your users based on their original intent.

If you have tons of pages, manual mapping probably isn’t in the cards for you, so to save time, look for patterns in your URLs that can be redirected in groups or sections.

Existing redirects should be migrated as well. Try to keep as many existing redirects as possible to lessen the workload, and make sure your URLs are mapped before you test redirects, to make sure you have backups if you lose them.

For more information on how to update URLs, check out this article.

4. Make sure you’re retaining titles, meta descriptions, and HTML markup.

Recall that website migrations help with website organization. As such, pages should be uniform and contain the same information as they did before. To illustrate, if the HubSpot Marketing Blog underwent a site migration, the content and descriptions for each blog post would be the same, just look different.

You can always update or rewrite titles, meta descriptions, and HTML markup, but you should still ensure that each page includes the proper information. 

5. Try out the new build on a test server (aka sandbox).

Seeing mockups or testing in a local environment will not give you a full picture of the new site’s functionality and implementation. For a seamless transition, take it online for a test drive before the official migration.

6. Choose the right date for the migration.

Hiccups will happen no matter what, but you can minimize them by avoiding peak hours.

Day of Migration

7. Prepare to update your site’s DNS settings.

If you’re moving your site to a new server, part of the process will include “pointing” to the site’s new location. Coordinate with your web/IT team and/or your hosting providers (new and old) to accomplish this.

8. Launch.

Set up your forwarding redirects, unpublish, and implement.

If DNS changes were involved, the site may be down momentarily.

If you’re not switching servers or platforms, the migration should be nearly instantaneous.

9. Crawl the new site.

Once the new site is live, you can do a crawl to see if it has been migrated how you expected it to. One thing you want to look for is proper indexability and crawlability.

10. Identify and resolve missing and duplicate content.

Using the crawl report, see if you find any anomalies, including duplicate content or 404 errors and broken links. In addition, you should click around the new site and look for issues.

11. Check for redirect chains.

Now that your site has been migrated, you have a lot of new redirects on your hands. If redirects already existed, chains may have been created.

Here’s what I mean:

If you were already redirecting A to B, your migration may have added a redirect from B to C.

This creates a chain of redirects: A to B to C.

Redirect chains can slow your site down and impact performance. You can avoid this by breaking the chains, redirecting A to C and B to C.

12. Ensure Google Analytics and Google Search Console are implemented.

To avoid any gaps in data and reporting, these should be up and running the same day.

13. Mark the date in Analytics.

Google Analytics allows you to make “Annotations” of important dates or events. This can help you contextualize the data and measure performance pre-and post-migration (unless you opted for a new Analytics setup).

14. Submit sitemaps.

Once everything is up and running, ensure your XML site map has no errors. Then, you can submit the sitemap in Google Search Console to invite Google to crawl the new implementation.

Post-Migration

15. Monitor performance.

While temporary dips in traffic are common after a migration, you should still be keeping a pulse on your analytics to ensure nothing big was missed that could be affecting performance.

16. Run site audits.

Sometimes, third-party tools can find issues you didn’t know about. SEMrush’s site auditor is excellent in situations like this.

17. Update your platforms.

If you have ads running or other platforms that may be using old URLs, be sure to add fresh links.

18. Have publishers update backlinks.

If your redirects have been implemented correctly, you’ll still get traffic and authority from your backlinks. However, it’s still best practice to use the freshest URLs possible. With that in mind, reach out to the publishers of your highest value links to notify them of the swap.

Website migration can be a lengthy process, but it’s not impossible. With preparation, you can have a migration that’s successful and friendly with your existing SEO efforts. 

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

New Call-to-action