Mar 042016
 

From functionality and appearance to navigation and coding integrity, a lot goes into creating an eye-catching, user-friendly website. It doesn’t end there, either. Web developers and designers must work together to produce websites that will be located by search engines, engage customers, and stimulate conversions. Whew! That’s a lot of pressure. Fortunately, the following 24 tips will guide you through the process of creating a unique user experience that inspires viewers to become loyal brand advocates.

  1. Choosing a Domain and Host

Great domain names (take a look at Google and Yahoo, for two) say so much while saying so little. In addition to being memorable, a domain name needs to accurately reflect your brand’s voice and be nearly impossible to misspell. Finding the right name for your brand is crucial, because incorporating a combination of SEO, simple spelling, and brand identity into the domain name leads to a higher chance of being located in search engine results. Simply put, businesses that are easily accessed online get more customers.

When comparing hosting packages, it’s vital to consider the nature of your website and business. Will the website be media-rich, with loads of pictures, videos, and presentations? Do you have technical support in-house, or do you need reliable, responsive support from your hosting provider? Also think about the amount of traffic your website will receive. Does the hosting company offer scalable solutions? What backup, security, and additional features are offered? Don’t forget to research reviews about the company’s performance on social media and third party websites before making a final decision.

  1. Framework of your Website

It’s impossible to develop a great website without a functional program taking care of the backend. If you think of your website as a car, you can understand why. When friends see your shiny new sports car, they look at the sleek paint job, glistening tires, and luxurious leather seating. In the world of websites, this equates to the part of your site a user experiences directly. Just like the powerful engine in your sports car, the backend of your website is where the magic really happens. Without strong backend services, your website won’t be able to “wow” your guests. Similarly, a sports car without an engine is rendered useless. One of the best “engines” for ecommerce sites is Magento, while WordPress is a customizable CMS ideal for informational sites. Continue reading »

Jan 282015
 

Explainer Videos are 30 second advertisements, explaining a product, a service, or business.    Buyers understand advertisements.  Buyers are used to videos.   Your business can be better understood through an Explainer Video.

Explainer Videos are a must have if you want your company to get better visibility and conversions.   We are a nation of advertisements.   Advertisements are quick.   Advertisements work.  With an Explainer Video, a buyer can quickly determine whether your company, product or service is something he’s interested in.

There are many companies that develop Explainer Videos, and done correctly, they can be very effective for delivering your message and increasing conversions.   However, there are some simple mistakes that can crippled conversions.  These mistakes happen in both small to large businesses.   .   Here are some surefire mistakes.

Mistake #1.    No compelling reason to play the video.   Why should your buyer play your video?  Countless websites have a videos that are never played.   There are many reasons:  the website is faster to read, the video looks boring, the video looks long and tedious, the video looks like a sales job.

My advise:  Get back to basicsThe buyer has to have a reason to play the Explainer Video.  The static page should be very appealing and have a strong and compelling reason to play the video.  Not just a click icon, or play me but a compelling reason to play the video.

You can do this several ways, first creating a great static page and then surrounding it with a great head line, that compells a buyer to play the video.   Use words that sell.
Continue reading »

Feb 132013
 

GoogleLogo

As search momentum shifts towards mobile devices, the Wall Street Journal reports that Google will soon start charging for ads on some mobile devices, such as tablets. See full article: “Google Acts to Raise Mobile-Ad Prices” (7 February 2013, pB7).

Under Google’s change, called “enhanced campaigns,” the company also said it will require advertisers to pay for ads on tablets even if they only want to reach personal-computer users.  All AdWords advertisers will be “upgraded” to “enhanced campaigns” by mid-2013, Google said in its blog post alerting advertisers to the change.
Continue reading »

Feb 052013
 

WSJ-SocialMedia-UsevsUsefulnessOur Geeks came across an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal last week about the use of social media by small businesses:
“Small Firms Say LinkedIn Works, Twitter Doesn’t”   (31 January 2013)

Note: Unlike most WSJ articles, this story is unlocked, which means non-subscribers can read the whole story!  It’s worth the read!

The Wall Street Journal polled small business owners last month to better understand their use of social media.  Not surprisingly, owners of small firms generally have limited money and time to figure out the most useful ways to tap into social media.
Continue reading »

Jan 242013
 

WSJ-Logo
Our Geeks noticed some interesting statistics about increasing ad click volumes in a recent Wall Street Journal article, “Google Stems Ad-Price Fall” (23JAN13, pB1).

In particular:

  • The Trend Towards Mobile: Year over year, the number of ads clicked on mobile devices grew +152% on smartphones and +157% on tablets (while PC ad clicks were down 10%)
  • Value of Ads on Tablets: At 80 cents, the price of each clicked-through ad on a tablet was slightly higher than the 79 cent ad rate for PCs, showing the value companies see in tablet advertising
  • Mobile Device Share of Clicks Growing: There were 109.1 million ad clicks in 4Q 2012, with 76% of those on PCs, 16% on smartphones, and 8% on tablets

Continue reading »

Jan 152013
 

A January 14, 2013 Wall Street Journal article:
     “Stores Hunt for Tech: At NRF Conference, Mobile Strategies Become Major Focus”
Has an interesting statistic about in-store mobile device usage and its impact on retail sales.

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From the article:
Getting the mobile strategy right can make a big difference for retailers, said Alison Paul, leader of Deloitte’s retail and distribution practice.

When consumers use mobile devices in physical stores, there is a 72% chance they will turn their browsing into actual purchases, a 14% increase above those who don’t use mobile devices, Ms. Paul said.
Continue reading »

Jan 132013
 

“Do we own our website?”
It seems like the answer to this question should be obvious, but we have consistently found that small business owners do need to ask this question. Unfortunately, if the website was built by a typical web design company, they may be surprised to find that the answer is “no”.

Case in Point: We recently worked with a client who was disappointed (even horrified!) to find that they did not own any of the text, photos, or illustrations on their websites.   Even worse, they found that the web design firm had snuck in its own advertising

To help others avoid this bad surprise, our geek team came up with a short list of questions every small business should ask their website designer:
Continue reading »

Dec 272012
 

There are lots of things to remember when you manage your own website:
– Refresh content
– Ensure links are working
– Update for SEO
– Upload latest brochures
– etc.
However, the MOST IMPORTANT thing to remember is probably to renew your domain name registration.

Unfortunately, it seems that online grocer freshdirect.com recently forgot to do this, and their website was down for two days this week:
Continue reading »

Dec 222012
 

Wow… where to start?

Though the Holidays are upon us, we’re working furiously here at the Web Geek Group to prepare for 2013.

To existing clients:
Thank you for your support over this past year!
It’s great to see your projects come together.

To new and prospective clients:
We look forward to working with you next year!

Regards,
John Garay, CEO
Sue Davis, VP Sales
And the rest of the Geeks!