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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. […]

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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: […]

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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 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. […]

Last month I had the extreme privilege of being selected by NASA to report live at the launch of STS-132, the last scheduled mission for the space shuttle Atlantis.  After a thorough screening process I was issued press credentials and allowed 2 day access to the historic NASA Launch Complex 39 Press Site next to the Vehicle Assembly Building where they prep the shuttles (and the Apollo Saturn V rockets back in the 60’s and 70’s), put them on a giant crawler and move them out to the launch pad.  The funny thing is: I’m not a reporter.  But here I am at the final launch of Atlantis with news crews and media outlets from around the globe.  I’m meeting astronauts, NASA engineers and getting up close and personal viewing at the launch pad where Atlantis proudly stands getting final prepping for launch. How did I, a non-reporter, manage to trick NASA into giving me press credentials for a shuttle launch?  It’s simple: Twitter.

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We all know about Twitter and Facebook – how could we not as they have been beaten into our brains over the last year.  Most of us are likely fatigued from the overload of media attention they have generated – Facebook this, Twitter that.  Yet if you use these tools to help promote your business, you know the importance of keeping up with any news related to these two social media giants.

On a smaller scale, Twitter and Facebook are not the only games in town to pay attention to as there are newer players on the social media field.  These newer players are helping to define the future trends in social media and networking.  Here are 4 trends to watch and the web apps that are behind them: […]