budgeting

Honestly, this is probably my least favorite blog article to write in this blog series on Business Website Success.  This is because, unless I’m talking to you about your specific website project, it is impossible to actually provide accurate pricing for you.  Everything we do, and this is the case with most professional website development firms, is custom built. […]

Group of People Connection Digital Device Concept

It may seem odd that we are at the fifth stage of this blog series on Business Website Success for redesigning your website and we have yet to talk about website design or budgeting.  You may already have some initial design ideas in your head or a rough budget projection, but until you determine all aspects of what it takes to have a profitable business online – design AND marketing – your design concepts or budget may be off base from your true needs.

In this stage of the planning, we are going to look at initial marketing ideas.  I say initial marketing ideas as we are not locking anything down yet. Instead, we are getting a clearer assessment of what is needed to promote the website (or more importantly, your business) after launch and what options are available.  Marketing can be a hidden or overlooked expense for many business owners, so getting this information up front helps to avoid surprises later. […]

website-wireframe

If you have been following this blog series, you have spent time putting together your goals for your website and you have defined your needs for the site, as well as the needs of your customers.  Now is the time to take what you have distilled from that research, and begin mapping it all out.  This is what you could refer to as the blueprinting stage of your website. […]

want-need

There is much thought that goes into any new website, and the larger your site and the more features it has the more planning will be needed to ensure your goals are met.  But before we jump into determining your website needs, let’s start with the needs of your customers.

It is important to realize your website is not for you.  You are not marketing to yourself – you are marketing to potential customers.  You are not trying to sell products and services to yourself – you want THEM to buy from you.  To do this you need to know how to appeal to them.  What are their needs that you can serve with the products and/or services you offer? […]

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If you have determined your website is due for a redesign, now is the time to start setting your goals for it.  Before you think about color schemes, visual eye candy, or even a budget, determining what your website goals are will help guide all other aspects of the planning and design of the site.  Yes, even before determining your budget, you should set your goals.  Then based on your budget, you can scale your goals accordingly.

I speak to a lot of business owners about their websites.  There is a surprising variety of goals that I hear from these business owners as to what they are seeking.  While I’m no fan of design by committee, I do see that most of the best goal setting for a website redesign comes from a company where multiple staff or department heads are consulted.  Different departments have different vantage points on the business and thus can see different needs that may not be obvious to others – even the business owner.

To give you a head start on ideas for your goals, I’ll give you a peak into some of the most common goals I’ve heard from clients during my 17 years with NetSource: […]

Stethoscope on laptop - Computer protection and repairing maintenance concept

While the age of a website is a good indicator of whether it is time for it to be redesigned, in truth there are more indicators to consider.  Like us humans, some websites age better than others.  You can be 100 years old and still run a marathon (it’s very rare, but it’s been done) or 20 years old and an out of shape couch potato (probably not as rare, unfortunately).  A well designed site from a reputable development company can have a much longer and more productive lifespan than a poorly designed website.  That said, you should do a health report on your website each year to make sure it is still performing at it’s best for you.

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Pinterest-logo

Pinterest should be one of the top contenders as a marketing avenue for your business.

According to Salesforce, which has access to Pinterest’s user data, Pinterest accounts for approximately 23% of social media-inspired sales. Assuming your target market fits Pinterest’s demographic (70% female, average age of 40), here are 17 ways to use the service to promote your business in 2017 (and beyond).

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If you are hearing a lot of references to the phrases “mobile-friendly”, “responsive mobile” or “mobile responsive” in regards to website design and not quite sure what all this means, you are not alone.  You may also be aware that these phrases somehow play into your Google rankings but are not entirely sure how or why? Let’s review so we can come away with a clearer understanding.

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There are many reasons why customer service is important to your success as a company.  The main reason is customer service can cost you repeat and future business if it is bad.  No matter how niche your business may be, with the whole world online, competition is fierce.  It only takes one bad experience, no matter how trivial, for a customer to look elsewhere.  Fortunately, there are many preventative measures you can implement online to help your customers resolve issues and improve the level of service you offer.

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I hope you’re not superstitious, because if you are, you may not like this post.  I’m not superstitious, although I am writing this blog post on the 13th of January – and it is a Friday.

Friday the 13th is a scary day to many people, but not to me.  However, what IS scary to me is the concept of “design by committee.”  I get chills down my spine whenever a client or potential client refers to needing to have their committee review all design layouts.  I’m going into my 13th year with NetSource, and in all of these years of experience in the development of hundreds of website projects, I have never seen a project benefit from “design by committee.” […]

Years ago I was babysitting my nephew.  He was sitting on the floor in his diapers with a boatload of toys and I was sitting on the floor next to him doing my best to entertain him.  I noticed that whatever toy of his I was playing with he wanted.  He’d reach out his little hand for the toy I had, dropping his current toy in the process.  Doing what any good and caring uncle would do, I decided to experiment on him.  I started picking up random items nearby and playing with them like they were really cool toys too.

“Brrrrrrrr!  Bam Bam Bam!” I exclaimed as I made a rolled up extension cord fly by like it was a fighter jet.  Sure enough, the little hand reached out to grab it, dropping a perfectly good Star Wars X-Wing fighter in the process.  It wasn’t long until I had 2 more Star Wars toys and a Buzz Lightyear figure that shot laserbeams from his wrist while my nephew had various cardboard boxes and an old shoe to play with.

We are naturally inclined to reach for whatever the next big thing is.  Right now, social media is that thing, and for the most part, it is worth reaching for.  But what shiny toys might we be dropping in the process?  Likely it is email marketing. […]