Website Development – Mid-West Digital Marketing https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com Thu, 26 Jul 2018 14:20:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 75379469 Your Business Identity When Building a Website https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/02/business-website-branding/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/02/business-website-branding/#respond Tue, 17 Feb 2015 18:39:20 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=2994 If I had a dime for every business that hashed out its identity or business plan during instead of before the website development process, I’d be a rich woman. Secretly, I think it would be kind of refreshing to kick off website plans by asking the client: Just who do you think you are? Don’t... Read more »

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If I had a dime for every business that hashed out its identity or business plan during instead of before the website development process, I’d be a rich woman. Secretly, I think it would be kind of refreshing to kick off website plans by asking the client: Just who do you think you are? Don’t get me wrong. I love our clients, and I don’t like confrontation. But the answer to that question is incredibly important to successful website development. Great websites come about more easily for businesses that have a solid idea upfront of who they are and where they’re trying to go.

Business-website-brandingi-identity-Crisis

Copyright 2009 Helga Weber

 

Know thy business before you start building thy website.

My experience is that many business owners don’t even realize just how schizophrenic they seem as they work out what they want their website to be and do. Revision after revision after revision eventually fleshes out their true identity: We’re remodelers. I guess we’re builders, too. No, wait, we’re actually mostly remodelers but we work with builders. But we also do roofing. Actually, we mainly do roofing. But we’re going to start getting into vinyl siding this summer. Wait, scratch that. Can you add a section on basements? And mold remediation? We’ve decided to change our business name from Toilets Forever to Castlemakers. Never mind. We’re going to spin off the toilet side of the business and create a new business focused on remodeling. But only commercial remodeling…

We don’t tend to hear all this information at one sitting. It tends to arrive in fits and starts, like little revelations, well after copywriting, design, and programming are underway. So, in a very real way, the business’s image, brand, plan, model, or other foundational pieces are being created on the fly. When a business hashes itself out in the midst of website development, there are far more potholes in the development process, and so the process slows. The business’s identity crisis hobbles creativity, raises costs, delays launch, and can leave all parties feeling frustrated.

There is no surer sign that you’re having a business identity crisis than a third, fourth, or fifth round of substantial revisions 80 percent into the development process.

Some clients decide during the development process that they are trying to be too many things to too many people. Some realize they need to create separate spin-off businesses. Some even change their business name to better reflect what they do. While it’s wonderful to see them figuring out who they are, I must say that there’s a reason the website developer’s office isn’t furnished with a psychologist’s sofa. There’s a better time and place to resolve this stuff.

As a full-service marketing firm, Mid-West Family Marketing helps businesses resolve their identity crises before website development. It’s an efficiency that pays off in spades.

When authors submit a book proposal to agents or publishers, they have to boil down hundreds of pages into a paragraph-length synopsis. In theory, business owners need to be able to do something similar for their business. They need to have clarity about their business. And it’s best to get that clarity before trying to create a new website. So, let’s return to the question: Just who do you think you are?

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Are Image Sliders Killing Your Website Conversion? https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/01/image-sliders-killing-website-conversion/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/01/image-sliders-killing-website-conversion/#respond Tue, 27 Jan 2015 21:45:23 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=2935 Love ‘em or hate ‘em, sliders are found on a majority of websites these days and are not going away soon.  Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn’t mean your website has to follow suit.  Consider what the slider accomplishes in the grand scheme of your site in order to impact visitor conversion. Is... Read more »

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Love ‘em or hate ‘em, sliders are found on a majority of websites these days and are not going away soon.  Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn’t mean your website has to follow suit.  Consider what the slider accomplishes in the grand scheme of your site in order to impact visitor conversion.

web-design-website-layout-slider-shutterstockIs Movement Really That Great?

Movement on a website can be cool or it can be distracting. In the case of the rotating slider, it can easily become distracting and thus be ignored. It takes control away from the user and undermines their ability to find what they are looking for. It can detract from your most important message and cause visitors to leave your site.

Trying To Please Everyone

Sliders represent a way to communicate a lot of information in one modular area. It’s easy to get carried away. Develop your home page around a content strategy and place the most important message here. The slider area should not be used as a catch all and if that is your only goal, rethink it.

Strategy vs Bells and Whistles

They’re not just pretty things to look at. Sliders can be effective if you have a good strategy. Instead of putting up random images and text, create a few compelling calls to action that are relevant to your visitor. Slow down the slide speed and provide intuitive navigation so your visitor doesn’t have to hunt to get back to that last slide or move forward to the next offer.

So, how do you know if your site needs a slider or not? There’s no simple yes or no answer. When developing your website, don’t design it around a slider. Design it around your brand and the message or offer that will convert your visitor.

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Looking Forward . . . Business Strategy (Digital Platforms) https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/looking-forward-business-strategy-digital-platforms/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/looking-forward-business-strategy-digital-platforms/#respond Wed, 31 Dec 2014 15:49:36 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=2917 Committing to change is a tough challenge, but once you start it gets easier when you see the benefits. We have been talking about your website, now let’s talk about how people find your website, just because you built a website and you put it out there on some server, people are not going to... Read more »

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Digital-Platforms-MarketingCommitting to change is a tough challenge, but once you start it gets easier when you see the benefits. We have been talking about your website, now let’s talk about how people find your website, just because you built a website and you put it out there on some server, people are not going to flock to it.

People have more options available than ever before to them to search for stuff they may or may not need.

Some of the more popular options include:

  • Google,
  • Bing,
  • Yahoo,
  • You Tube,
  • AOL, Ask.com and whole bunch of other search engines.
  • Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and of lot of other social sites.
  • Shopzilla, eBay, Amazon, PriceGrabber and lots of other shopping sites.

Now, here come the questions:

  1. Are you using any of these platforms to market your company? If the answer is “YES”, please continue, if the answer is “NO”, then we should talk soon.
  2. What platforms are you using and which of their services are using? Why did you pick the platforms you are using?
  3. Who is managing these platforms? (If the answer is YOU, we should talk and SOON)
  4. How do you know what you are doing is working?

Points to consider when choosing which digital marketing platforms you should be using to help you drive traffic to your website and grow your business.

  1. Is your company a business that supplies products and services to other companies? If “YES”, are you using Twitter and LinkedIn?
  2. Does your company sell products people can buy on the internet? If “YES”, are you using the shopping engines and Google Merchant Feed?
  3. Is your company a business that offer services to consumers? If “YES”, how are you optimizing the content on your website? Are you bidding on industry specific keywords that consumers are searching on that could drive qualified traffic to your website?
  4. Is a weekly blog part of your marketing strategy? If “YES”, who is writing it? How are you promoting your blog through other digital platforms?
  5. What reports are you looking at on a regular basis? And even more important, what are you doing based on those reports?

Mid-West Digital Marketing is a full-service digital agency and a Google Partner who can work with you to develop an effective marketing strategy to help you get found on the web, improve the quality of traffic to your website and increase your bottom line. All important things in this digital age.

Give us a call, send us an email and let’s get started today.

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Looking Forward…Business Strategy (Your Website) https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/looking-forward-business-strategy-your-website/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/looking-forward-business-strategy-your-website/#respond Tue, 30 Dec 2014 15:42:46 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=2913 Resolutions are not just for New Year’s Day, but something we should be thinking about all year round. Especially if we are talking about a business strategy. Let’s take a couple of minutes to talk about your website. When was the last time you looked at your website like a potential customer seeing your website... Read more »

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websitesResolutions are not just for New Year’s Day, but something we should be thinking about all year round. Especially if we are talking about a business strategy.

Let’s take a couple of minutes to talk about your website.

When was the last time you looked at your website like a potential customer seeing your website for the very first time ever? Okay, let’s try another question, when was the last time you updated the content on your website?

Go to your computer and open your favorite browser, type in the URL of your business’ website, wait for it to open, now look at it . . . .

Here are a few questions you should answer:

  1. Without scrolling or changing the size of the window, are you able to see any of the following:
    1. The NAME of your business?
    2. A clear, concise statement of what you are about?
    3. A list of your social media platforms (or the little icons that will connect visitors to your social media pages)? Not doing social media? We should talk later.
    4. Are the colors reflective of your brand?
    5. Do you have a nice clean logo?
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page, are you able to see any of the following:
    1. Copyright date of your website? Is it the current year?
    2. A link to your website’s privacy policy? Do not have a privacy policy? Or know what a website privacy policy should be? We should talk. Later.
    3. Contact information – telephone number, email address, and street address; basic contact stuff?
  3. Is the content on your site laid out in a logical manner that is easy to follow? Can visitors to your site easily navigate around your website to find the information they need?
  4. In addition to good content that is easy to read and understand, is your website visually appealing with nice graphics, good colors and high quality images?

Think about this, think about your business, think about what you need to do, then, we should talk.

Before you go, I am going throw in a plug, a shameless one at that. We offer businesses a review of your website and how your current marketing efforts are doing in driving traffic to the website. It is a called a Strategy Developer and when you call to talk to an Account Executive let them know you read this blog and are interested in a Strategy Developer for your company’s website and how we can help grow your business.

Next time, we will be talking about what digital marketing platforms you are using.

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Why Choose WordPress for Your Next Website https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/choose-wordpress-next-website/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2014/12/choose-wordpress-next-website/#respond Mon, 08 Dec 2014 21:15:49 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=2883 WordPress began as a blogging platform and has cleverly evolved into a robust content management system. Here at Mid-West, it has become our web development platform of choice. Check out a few good reasons it should be your top choice when developing your next website. Easier Re-designs – WordPress content is maintained in a database... Read more »

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wordpressWordPress began as a blogging platform and has cleverly evolved into a robust content management system. Here at Mid-West, it has become our web development platform of choice. Check out a few good reasons it should be your top choice when developing your next website.

Easier Re-designs – WordPress content is maintained in a database so no matter how often you change your design, your content stays put. This means spending less time porting over content from another site and spending more time focusing on a great design.

Plethora of Plugins – Adding extra functionality to your site is easy through the use of plugins. Need a testimonials rotator? No problem, there is a plugin for that. How about a shopping cart? They have that too. The core installation of WordPress supports many other add-ons that can be found for free or at a reasonable fee. This allows your website to adapt as needed to meet your visitor’s requirements.

Supports Content Creation – Originally a blogging platform, WordPress easily allows content creation in the form of posts, which can be referred to as articles, recipes, blog entries – whatever fits with your site. Content creation supports SEO efforts and WordPress makes it easy.

Development Community – The developers at WordPress are continuously looking for ways to improve and keep up with security releases. In fact, with the latest version installed, your site now receives automatic updates immediately when a new security fix is released. If you need a custom function created, it’s not hard to find a skilled WordPress developer that can accomplish it.

Community Support – Hang out on the forums at wordpress.org to see how involved WordPress users are. There are hundreds of thousands of threads on just about any topic. If you need help, it’s not hard to find someone who has been there done that.

At Mid-West Digital, we are experts with the WordPress platform and have developed unique designs, custom functionality and content generating websites that work. If you are considering a new website, contact us today to get a free quote.

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