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Tips and Advice

We build websites for small business owners. Over the 12 years we've been doing this, we've experienced and learnt quite a bit when it comes to websites and internet marketing.

Building a website is a new experience for most people. So we decided to put our various articles and comments about all things website related in one place to make them easy to find. :-) Use the menu at the top of the page or follow these links for info in different sections. Enjoy!

What to give your website to help it grow

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Give your website a home page makeover to help it growIf you had to ask any business what it wants and would always appreciate, I'm convinced it would say “More sales, please!” But as with any gift, you stand the chance of getting it wrong.

How exactly do you go about giving your business exactly what it wants? Actually, it's a whole lot easier than spending a day in the mall with the kids! You spend some time on the first thing visitors see when coming to your website: your home page.

How to use keywords to help your search engine rankings

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Using keywords properly can help your search engine rankings.If you're looking at keywords as a way of improving your search engine rankings, it helps to remember that the main issue is not about the keywords but about the content they refer to.Search engines are interested in your content; your keywords help them decide what it's about and if it's useful enough to give to searchers.

Your keywords need to reflect themain messageconveyed in the content on a specific page. It doesn't help to list a long string of keywords that aren't used anywhere on that specific page.

The dangers of using Outlook to send e-mail newsletters

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Using Outlook for mass e-mailing can result in disaster.Why can't I use my normal e-mail program to send out my newsletter?

Normal e-mail programs (Outlook or Outlook Express - indeed, most desktop e-mail programs) can cause problems if you send an e-mail to more than 15 to 20 people at the same time.

What happens is that the e-mails all go out together and it can cause your Internet Service Provider (ISP) or other server hosting and sending your e-mail to think you're spamming. This can very negatively influence the way your mail is delivered.

Your ISP or hosting provider can block your entire e-mail address as that of a spammer and worse, can list you as a spammer. This will result in none of your mail getting delivered. You won't know, they won't inform you and you can't do much about it.

The IP address of the domain the e-mail is linked to may also be blocked. This may also negatively affect your website and you may have trouble with any subscriptions for auto responders or other lists you may be offering on your website. All in all, not a situation to get into.

Why do bad websites exist? Reason 1

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Bad websites exist - and this is the number one reason why.Reason number one:

See if this makes sense to you...

One day Bob walked into a car dealership and went up to Tom, the salesman.

“Good morning. I'd like a vehicle, please,” Bob said.

“Good morning, Sir. What do you have in mind?” said Tom.

“I don't really know. Just a vehicle,” said Bob a bit impatiently.

Why do bad websites exist? Reason 2

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Reason 2 why bad websites exist.The little word “free” accounts for a fair number of bad websites floating around on the web. How so?

First let's consider all the “free stuff” available on the net. From info to games to ebooks to video clips to software, a lot of things are available for you to acquire without spending any money. Among all these free goodies are free website builder programs.

“Whoo-Hoo!” yells George, a delighted business owner. “Now I can build my own website and not have to pay a web developer!”

And so he downloads the program, installs it on his computer and spends hours learning how to make the program create a page, put his text where he thinks it must go, building a menu and adding some pictures.

Eventually he manages to upload his website to a hosting provider and then he sits back and waits for the sales to start rolling in while he's sleeping. (And it better happen soon because all the hours and hours he spent on making his own website meant that he couldn't really pay attention to his business and cashflow is now a bit tight!)

The do's and don'ts of business e-mail - Part 1

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Business email - what to do and what not to doE-mail has become such a large part of our lives so quickly that many of us haven't really had time to consider the impact it's made on us and the way we communicate with each other.

The main thing we're aware of is that our inboxes are getting fuller each day. This means more to read and more e-mails to answer.

We used to be able to describe our work frustrations with little pictures of people buried under mountains of paperwork piled up on their desks. Now we need to draw people drowning in their PC's!

Pretending that e-mail is going to get less or go away won't help. It's definitely here to stay. To use it to communicate effectively with as many people as possible, e-mail, especially business e-mail, needs to follow certain guidelines.

The do's and don'ts of business e-mail - Part 2

Written by Lerynne Verster.

The do's and don'ts of business email - Part 2A few more pointers to consider to make your business e-mail as polished and professional as possible. (Part 1 is here.)

Your English teacher was right

  • Grammar & spelling may bring back bad memories from high school but they are still important. Bad grammar and spelling can quickly create the impression that the writer is sloppy, careless, lazy, doesn’t pay attention to detail (or doesn’t care about it) or a host of other negative ideas. Definitely not the image you want to portray when you’re doing business.

Why do I need a website? Top 15 reasons

Written by Lerynne Verster.

Questions to answer when deciding if you need a website."Every business must have a website."

By now you've heard or read this somewhere but you're not sure. Will a website work for your business, in your industry? How do you know if internet marketing is one of the marketing methods you should be using?

You’ll know you need a website if you answer yes to any of the following 15 questions.

The 7 basic building blocks of any website

Written by Lerynne Verster.

The 7 basic building blocks of any websiteWhen it comes to websites, many of our current clients have admitted that the first time they asked someone for a website quote, they ended up feeling so confused and that they were about to be ripped off that they decided not to get involved in internet marketing at all. This is a sad state of affairs and in the long run it can cause a firm that really needs a website to lose money.

We've found that by providing some background info about what a website entails and what its basic blocks are, we help our clients to have a better understanding of what they are getting and how it all works.

This is a chat I had with Michael Cowen, Strategic Director at Brandsocial, about the building blocks that you need to follow through on to get your website up and running.

We spoke about starting a website, what to consider, what to put on it, what it must look like, how to get visitors and more. The conversation is based on the article below this video.

 

The basic building blocks of any website are the following:

  1. A domain name
  2. The "look and feel" of the website (also called the design of the site)
  3. The development of the site
  4. The content to appear on the site
  5. The layout of the content
  6. The navigation / menu structure of the site (how to move between different pages, articles etc)
  7. Hosting

A number of other aspects can also be added to a website to add to what it can do and to achieve special purposes (e.g. image gallery, forms, e-commerce, etc), but the above list contains the basics for any site. 

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Office Tel: 051 444 0799
Cell: 082 807 9232

Email: info@elite-ideas.com
Skype: lerynne (Our Marketing Manager)

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