Archive for the ‘IT & Tech’ Category

Using a website as your marketing tool has been a go-to for businesses for more than 20 years, but now more than ever, having a good website vs. one that just exists is practically a necessity for any start-up. It’s easy to build and put up a mediocre website, but what does that effort really get you?

Without working with an expert website creator or having some knowledge about competitive fine-tuning, the website you have may be underperforming and costing you business. These are the five most common issues we find from clients that come to us, many of which who already have a website.

#1 You Don’t Have Any Content

When it comes to getting recognized on major search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo!, the truth is: content is key! The more you have to say, and the more spot-on that written content, social media posting, or video entry is to your businesses’ message is how people find you when they type their search phrase into the input box. Have multiple tiers of pages, posts, and videos explaining your products, your company’s goals, and how you relate to your customers.

Simply having a website does get your foot in the door, but that may be all it gets you. You need to frequently and consistently write, create, video, or design new content for your site on a weekly basis in order to stay ahead of the competition. Hire a content creator or social media influencer to help you build if you don’t have the time!

#2 You’re on an old, slow platform or have no mobile support

Yes, it’s possible to be falling behind even with a well-thought-out and well-executed content campaign! Technology moves fast, and so does people’s expectations. If your website is slow, buggy, broken on mobile, or just functioning improperly, your visitors will move on quickly. Start-up businesses often buy into low monthly payments or starter web packages, but these low-value products are often made for wide audiences and come with a lot of bloat and unnecessary bells and whistles.

Working with a professional website creator can not only take that job out of your busy entrepreneur hands, but it can also help you optimize your site to flow better for your visitors and render better results on search engines and for mobile devices which are a huge part of the marketplace.

#3 You’ve let your blog or your menus get outdated

In any industry your competition moves as fast, so content and product menus are easy to lose track of. However, if you’re not keeping your content up to date, it’s common for visitors to assume you’re no longer in business or simply don’t carry what they’re looking for.

In the information age, searching is ideally the easiest way for your visitors to locate what they’re shopping for, but if your website is not showing them what you have, you’re likely getting visits from people who won’t be coming back.

#4 Your website design sucks

Let’s be honest; in 2019 visitors can tell the difference between a “good” website and a “bad” website. While we’re not saying you need to spend a fortune on your marketing, we do believe that having a stylish design that speaks to your company’s brand and values speaks bounds to your audience. This is often hard to accomplish without the help of an expert.

If visitors arrive at your site and it appears dated, low quality, or hard to navigate, customers may straight up assume you’re not making any money and move on to a bigger and sharper looking competitor. A large part of website marketing is making sure your brand represents exactly who you are and who you want your audience to think you aspire to be.

#5 You need search engine optimization

It’s true: a lot of websites are accomplishing all of the above just fine. They look good, function well, and have plenty of content, but they’re still falling behind competitors. Once your website hits this point, it’s often time for some fine-tuning for search engine optimization (SEO).

SEO is a practice used specifically to net your website more traffic – either in general or to funnel the right audience to the right places. SEO practices can include things like:

  • speed optimizing your website for performance
  • making sure your page and link structure make sense from a user angle
  • re-working your content to make sure it has the right verbiage for your audience
  • creating a set of focus terms and phrases (keywords) that help match you with your visitors on Google and other search platforms better

Overall, having a website is essential to any new modern business – but simply owning one isn’t always the key to success. Make sure you hire the right team to bring the right strategy, SEO and content to your audience with every step.

 

Want to get the most out of your website? Contact the website design, SEO, and marketing experts at VectorDefector for a FREE consultation!

Creative Density

Upcoming in May – VectorDefector will team up with local co-working space Creative Density to participate in instructing continuing education classes for modern and creative professionals in Denver.

We’ll be participating with a number of other experts in offering various one-off training courses geared toward modern technology.

Stop by on May 24th to take my class on “CSS Frameworking”!

A topic of much discussion this week, the SOPA or Stop Online Piracy Act, is an unfair solution to a problem we can all agree exists. The U.S. government is currently debating censoring the sharing of intellectual properties owned by the entertainment industry by blocking ANY websites that they believe use their products without their permission with penalties as high as jail time. A tandem act is also being discussed which essentially could allow the government to block access to international sites as they choose. Below is a video explanation of these acts, describing the ACTA initiative – a conceptual global document that outlines SOPA-like bills around the world:

I wholeheartedly agree that online piracy and copyright infringement is an issue that needs to be handled, but policing the entire web and treating us all as if we were criminals is a step too far. I recommend anyone who agrees to check out this list of companies who support SOPA and discontinue your business with them.

Density Co-working

Last year, in order to get a change of scenery at work, I joined Creative Density – a co-working community here in Denver. Co-working environments are spaces where freelancers can gather to gain a more professional workspace and collaboration among other professionals.

Recenty Creative Density owner Craig Baute and I sat down to discuss what VectorDefector does along with the current state of the web in a section he’s called the Member Minute.

Check out the article here: http://densitycoworking.com/member-minute-tom-benway/ or watch the video right here:

Overall co-working has been a great experience! I have a new space to utilize for professional development and a wealth of new creative folks to bounce ideas with. I’d highly recommend it.

2012!

Happy New Year everyone! 2011 was a great year for VectorDefector and I’m hoping 2012 is even better!

In addition to continuing to provide the best possible customer care, eye for design and quality working products, VectorDefector will be releasing a few new services and products throughout the year: new “tag-along” mini sites specifically designed to work well with mobile devices, a new e-commerce package for folks seeking a total e-commerce store solution, and expanded features on our already great editable designs.

I also anticipate several new launches to kick off the new year, so please come back and check out our latest and greatest collaborations!

Wordpress 3.3

In their typical yearly fashion, the good folks at WordPress.org released a new version of their brilliant, free to license software yesterday.

Their latest version, 3.3 “Sonny” named after yet another jazz legend, includes a couple new features worth taking a look at: a new interface that’s more geared toward fluid layout for a range of different devices (good news for folks who edit their site on their phone or ‘pad), a new media library that is simpler to use, more thorough in-system help screens, and a small addition for developers that should help me build more flexible sites.

All and all, another great reason to continue using the best open-source content management system!

Wordpress 3.2

Today, the good folks at WordPress released the latest and greatest version of their amazing content management software – version 3.2 “Gershwin”.

This newest version focuses on speed and compatibility, which I feel was a strong focus for this release. The interface has been streamlined, the database is quicker, greater support for mobile updating has been added and updates only download the files you need instead of re-loading the entire software. Not too shabby, WordPress.

As a fan and follower of WordPress, VectorDefector will continue to offer quality websites that are light-loading, easy to update and are easy on the eyes. Contact us today to get started!

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Change Your Password!

This week, Sony’s Playstation Network was hacked on an unbelievably large scale resulting in outages of content, issues with online game play and, in some cases, users reporting missing dollars in their accounts.

As networks continue to grow and store our information for convenience, its important to remember that a lot of information is being stored about you on a day to day basis. While this is by no means malicious (and in fact adds to convenience), users need to remember to be careful. Make sure to choose a good password that is composed of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and even punctuation. Also try to minimize the amount of truely personal information that you share with these networks – that information is stored and can always, in the worst case scenarios, be stolen.

Personally, I made sure to remove any extra stored credit info from my XBOX Live account. While it makes life easier, I’d prefer to withold a little convenience for safety. And if you’re still using “admin” as your password, now is as good of a time as any to make that change!

Check out this article posted on Yahoo! Tech news today about some of the worst digital security breaches in history; many have taken place within the last 5 years.

Social Networks

Social Networks

According to an article posted on Yahoo! news and Mashable today, new studies are showing that Thursdays and Fridays may be the best days for businesses to interact with social media.

Studies produced by Buddy Media and Hubspot indicate a possible 18% increase in viewership on Facebook and Twitter growing at the end of the week. Their reasoning: people are starting to check out at the end of the week and spend more time browsing social networks. Furthermore, both companies note Monday as being a possible poor day to post business-related social network messages since its actually the most popular day for social network activity resulting in messages getting lost in the conversation threads.

While this doesn’t necessarily translate to traffic to a website, I encourage clients who utilize their social networks for marketing to keep this in mind. Fire off one last marketing message before heading out for the weekend and see how it returns!

 

Consumer Liason

Consumer Liason

Over the last couple of weeks, VectorDefector has joined with service provider Consumer Liason to help bolster some businesses in a variety of directions.

Consumer Liason specializes in connecting consumers with small business services providers in a wide variety of areas from graphic and web design to automotive, construction and real-estate.

A great source for anyone looking to find a local business to partner with- check out Consumer Laison!