Business Website Redesign

Business Website Redesign

Replace Outdated Websites

A large number of businesses have outdated websites. Too often they are neglected by the business but still found by visitors on the web. When these visitors go to the site they are normally able to tell, via content or structure, that the site has not been updated in a long time. A site with these problems needs to be redesigned as soon as possible.

Website Redesign

Websites that need to be redesigned typically need work on two elements. Those are content and structure. The redesign of a website uses existing elements of the old site to serve as a guide for the redesign of the new site.

This is a business website after redesign.

Website Redesigned to Fit Mobile Devices

Update Website Content

If a business has outdated website content, then it can be used as a guide for content on the new website. Text should be reviewed and edited. Images need to be reviewed. Poor images need to be replaced.

Website Structure

Sites that are hard to get around need a new structure. Many sites are not designed to be compatible with mobile devices. These need a structure redesign.

different screen treatments, desktop view, smart phone view, ipad view.

This Website Accommodates Multiple Size Screens

Simple Structure Redesigns

Some websites simply need to redesign their site’s structure. Sites that have kept their content up-to-date but do not have mobile friendly pages fall into this category. A redesign of this type of website normally costs a lot less than businesses expect. That’s because a major portion of the desired site already exists.

A company that has kept a site like this updated normally knows the sites shortfalls. With that knowledge they can quickly put together a plan for the redesign. And they have kept the content updated on a regular basis. So placing content on the new site is simple and easy to do.

Website Redesign and Content Updates

A large number of business websites have poor website designs and outdated content. This gives them the ideal opportunity to get everything updated. The fact that they have an existing website gives them an advantage over designing a site from scratch. Their poor website design serves as a guide for what not to do. And even a little experience with the old site gives them some direction for the new one.

While most of the content needs to be replaced, the existing content can still serve as a guide. And some portions can be reused. Most images are likely outdated and will need to be edited or replaced. And even if they need to use some of the old images, new tools make it easier to take those images and improve them.

New Business Websites

Too many businesses have websites that are totally outdated. In many cases these do more damage to the business than they do good. These sites need a total redesign. There is a slight advantage this business has over starting a site from scratch.  They at least know what the don’t want.

These businesses need to drop back and take a look at the sites of their competitors. And they can get some ideas on how to design their new site from those competing sites.

Redesign Costs Less Than A New Site

One advantage that all existing sites have, whether they are good or bad, is that they can give the designers some direction on the new site. Businesses can learn from their existing sites what works and what doesn’t on the web. The website designers can use what is good and eliminate what isn’t. Then they add higher quality content and the site is significantly improved.

Improve The Website Design at a Reasonable Price

As time passes web design tools have become more powerful and easier to use. Creating an attractive website design is much easier and costs less today than it did years ago. Too often, managers put off needed website redesigns because they have a misconception as to what it will cost. When they learn the truth, they regret not having started the process sooner.

Contact us if you need a website redesigned. We will be happy to review your existing site and make a proposal for redesigning it.

Social Media Management

Social Media Management Services

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social media are impacting businesses more than they ever have. And smart businesses are using these web assets to effectively improve their companies. While some hire expert employees, others turn the duties over to social media management services.

Today more and more businesses are using social media to reach their existing clients and to reach out to potential clients. The management of social media is becoming a bigger job. More businesses are hiring social media management services to do the work for them.

Creating a Social Media Plan

The first thing a social media manager needs to do is create long term plan. Setting goals and creating budgets is all a part of the process. Next comes the content strategy. To reach desired goals, the content needs to be posted that will meet those goals. A social media management company will create a system for the flow of content from its creation to its posting.

Planning Posts

Posting on social media needs to be carefully planned. The manager can use the long term plan to create a flow of posts that will be posted on a schedule. These postings can be automated through valuable tools like Hootsuite. Automated posting creates more time to focus on other company media management duties.

Keeping A Check On Posts

Social media venues need to be monitored. Someone needs to check for negative comments. And they need to reply to those comments. Ideally, there will be many more positive responses than negative. Those followers also need to be nurtured to insure future activity.

 

Keeping A Check On Comments

Just posting on your social media is not enough. Your social media assets need to be monitored for post responses. Most responses are normally positive. Although, there can be a range of negative comments.

Positive Comments

Businesses need to reply with at least a “Thank You!” to positive comments they receive in their social media. It encourages other positive comments. Don’t go overboard in correspondence with these posts. They can appear to be orchestrated and that will have a negative impact on your overall standing with visitors.

Negative Comments

Negative replies to your social media need to be attended to quickly. While they are a pain, they can become a resource of incredible value. This is where you learn about the shortcomings of your business. And you normally get those views from your clients.

Rude Comments

On occasions you are going to get comments that are just rude. The reasons for these can be many. But in most cases this is due to an individual with a personality problem. A simple comment like “I’m sorry your feel that way” shows other visitors that you at least paid attention to the comment. But it may encourage another rude comment from the subject. So no reply may be the best way to go. This is a judgement call.

Receiving Suggestions

Customers and visitors can provide an incredible benefit to a company through social media. That comes through suggestions and constructive criticism. That’s where the person monitoring the activity can be of value. The social media content manager will filter the incoming information and present it to upper management. Ideally, upper management will use the data to improve their goods and services.

Social Media Management Company

Small businesses often don’t have the resources to keep up with their social media the way they should and their lack of experience causes them to spend more time than is necessary to make posts and respond to comments. They should consider using a social media management company. These companies provide services that save time and create quality social media content. Their professionals have the experience necessary to deal with most negative comments. And they know which comments need to be forwarded to the business’s management. A social media management company can also train your staff to use social media more efficiently.

Website Re-skin

Website Re-skin

Web News

Re-skin Your Website

What Is a Website Re-skin?

Businesses change over time. Some change faster than others. A problem many businesses run into in this situation is that while their business has changed their website has not. A website “re-skin” can solve the problem of their (now outdated) website. A re-skin includes layout changes, updates to graphics, photo updates and a range of other modifications that fall short of a website redesign. And this costs far less than a new website.

When should you re-skin?

Time is not the issue when determining when to re-skin your site. Changes in your business and changes in your market are. A company that starts out in lawn maintenance may grow into landscaping in their first six months. If they continue into the next six months without making some serious modifications to their website, like putting it on their home page and adding a new page to their site, think about the business they are losing. A redesign to a little company like that may cost $300 to $500, but if they gain two landscaping jobs in that first six months then their investment should be paid for times over.

Opportunity Cost

It is hard to measure the cost of lost opportunities. But the longer a business waits on re-skinning, the greater the cost of the opportunities that have been lost. And for the landscaper that loses those two new clients in that second six months, that cost is multiplied because those clients went somewhere else and, in the future, they will get their landscaping and lawn work done with a different business.

Contact us and let’s discuss re-skinning your website.

Web Content Selection

Web Content Selection

Content is King

In January of 1996 Bill Gates, a co-founder of Microsoft, wrote an essay that holds true over two decades later, just in a slightly different context. The “Content is King” essay referred to the process of selling information over the Internet.  In 1996 less than one percent of the world population was using the Internet. The essay was written before most people knew anything about the web.

What is Web Content?

Web content is the textual, visual, or aural content that is encountered as part of the user experience on websites. It may include—among other things—text, images, sounds, videos, and animations.

Wikipedia

website content examples

A business has many options in the type of content it can present on the web.  The two primary elements of web content are text and media. We all know what text is. Media includes several elements. Those are images, video, animation and sound.

In creating web content, text is the first thing most of us think about. But, the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” rings as true on the web as anywhere. And the presentation of a quality video can raise a presentation to another paradigm.

Today, on the web, the impact of animation and sound can be very good or very bad. Poor animation can simply be ugly. Unexpected sound can catch visitors off guard and simply piss them off. Be extra careful when using these mediums for your web content.

Web Content Management

Content is king, especially on a website. A beautifully designed website is inviting to new visitors. But, quality content is what gets them to stay on the website and, in most cases, come back repeatedly.

Business Website Content

Content is the key element that makes a business website. It needs to be created thoughtfully and carefully through effective web content management.

Businesses need to update the content of their websites on a regular basis. Old content carries a range of liabilities. It chases away regular visitors to your site. It sends harmful signals to the search engines. And it brings your commitment into question. Updated content can be enticing and encourages them to visit in the future.

Blog Content

Blogs run on a timeline. Content is updated in younger blog posts. Older posts serve as a record of the past and don’t always need to be updated, especially if newer posts update content that is outdated on older posts. Creating a link from the older post to the newer one with a little explanation of the changes helps visitors and has a positive impact on your search engine ranks.

Republishing is another option for older posts. But, they need to be updated and the post should reveal that it is an update. Blog content that is no longer relevant, or out of date, should be deleted and/or replaced when republishing.

Selling Website Content

Many people consider “selling content” as selling a subscription to a blog or selling ad space on a blog. Gates predicted in his 1996 essay that this type of content provider could “expect a lot of disappointment in the short-term as content companies struggle to make money through advertising or subscriptions.”

He went on to predict:

In the long run, advertising is promising. An advantage of interactive advertising is that an initial message needs only to attract attention rather than convey much information. -Bill Gates

Today, that “initial message” comes in the form of the title and description of the website. These are the first things a searcher sees when they get results in the search engines. If their content quality attracts the attention, then the visitor will click through to the site. Next come the quality of the websites first headlines and text. Their quality determines whether the visitor scrolls further on the web page. Then the quality of the web page determines whether the visitor goes to additional pages.

deck of cards stacked up

As you can see website content can break down at many points. Quality web content management helps avoid this.

Contact us if you need help with your web content.

Affordable Websites

Affordable Websites

Small Businesses Need Affordable Websites

Too many small businesses got burned on their websites years ago. They were led to believe that a simple site would require a costly investment, an investment so high that many decided to go without. Those that took the risk got burned. Over time the costs of sites have gone down. Part of that is due to more competition, part is due to improved technology and a lot is due to the improved awareness of business management.

These photos are of businesses that use websites.

Different businesses have different website needs.

What Does A Website Cost?

This is the primary question we are asked when potential clients contact us. But before we can give them a number, we need some details. A website that has a single page with a few images and several paragraphs of text can run as little as $300. A site that sells 100,000 products online, posts regular blogs and manages social media can cost millions to build and requires the hiring of several employees to maintain it. Give us details and we can give you an estimate on the cost of a website.

What Do You Need?

The first thing you need to do is determine what kind of website best meets your needs. To do this you need to answer some basic questions. And the primary one is “What is the purpose of the website?”

Determining the Purpose of Your Website

The possible functions of websites for small businesses are great.  Different businesses have different motives for creating a website. Some use it as a tool to communicate with clients and/or employees. Others use it to promote their business. And some creates sites to do both. The sites required by most small business fall in three primary categories. Those categories are information, marketing and ecommerce.

Different websites have different functions.

Business website categories include information, marketing and ecommerce.

An Information Website

Some businesses simply want to use a website to get information to their clients. For example, a window treatment business may want to post PDF files that give the customers instruction on installing products. Creating such a site requires some effort on the way the website works and the process for posting content. Something like this could be done at low cost in a blog format.

A Marketing Website

If you are promoting goods and services on your site then one of the best places to start in determining what you need is other websites in your market. It is ideal to have the best site in your market. But, some businesses cannot afford to make that investment. Even so, it is a good idea for a business to create a site that is compatible with others in its market.

An Ecommerce Website

Selling products online normally requires the most significant investment. If it is managed properly in the right market, then it can also provide the greatest rewards. Creating such a site requires the design of a marketing website, the installation of a shopping cart and the process of posting products on the site. Deciding to create an ecommerce site should be reviewed carefully before putting significant resources at risk.

Starting Small Can Be a Good Option

For a business that has no history with a website, a relatively safe possibility is to start with a small website. From a single page site to one with several pages, a custom website can be created without putting too many resources at risk. And as you see the need you can always grow the site over time.