Let this blog be a place of sharing and learning. We are sending out an all-points bulletin to business professionals, industry leaders and game changers. It is our goal that we all work as a team to pass along helpful information, insights, lessons, intrigues and thoughts. Let's discuss the vast world of web design, marketing, advertising, investments and anything else that will help us all keep our tools sharp.

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This article is meant for not only business owners, but individuals who provide search engine optimization services as well.  From our many years of providing SEO services in Utah, and the rest of the United States, we have taught the must haves in order to decide if you or your client is truly ready for internet marketing.  The key is to make sure that everyone has a mutual understanding of commitment, expectations and dedication.  By qualifying the situation you can make sure that both the client and the SEO expert are in positions to succeed.  After all the most successful campaigns are supposed to be a complete win-win scenario for everyone.

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Are Your Ready For SEO

1. Establish The Understanding And Benefits Of A Strong Online Presence:

Many times business owners or general decision makers do not fully appreciate the benefits to a strong online presence that high search engine rankings can help create.  In order for everyone to be happy it is important that the client realizes that a search engine optimization campaign is really about making a sound long-term business investment.  If you are a business owner considering adding SEO to your marketing strategies make sure that you do proper research.  We suggest looking at case studies online, finding examples of not only direct financial benefits, but also the increase in brand awareness SEO can provide.  If you are looking to provide internet marketing services to someone it is very necessary to analyze the expectations and understandings of a prospective client.

2. Have A Desire To Invest Long Term:

Some businessmen/companies want to simply dip their toe in the pool of online marketing.  We have found that people who want to try SEO for a couple months are rarely, if ever someone that you can work with.  Simply put search engine optimization takes time.  Very few industries and websites are in a position where there can be a return in just a few months.  As much as you may want to say “yes”, it is important to resist this temptation.  In general the clients who are only looking to invest for a couple of months to see if it works are not putting themselves in a position to succeed.  We would suggest waiting for the clients who have the desire and patience to see the results they want.  If you are a business owner please understand that SEO is not a flash in the pan, instant gratification marketing avenue.

3. Do Not Look At SEO As Life Or Death:

In a nutshell this means to make sure that you/they have the budget set aside.  Yes, every company and search engine expert has different rates and commitment times, but regardless to make money you need to spend money.  This concern however is not just limited to those who have smaller budgets.  As a Utah SEO Firm we have seen several multi-million dollar companies who have the budget, yet do not see the importance of SEO.

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Seo Death

When performing these types of services it is essential to avoid two situations.

1. The first situation is someone who is starting a company and wants SEO to start bringing in revenue.  The problem here is that they usually do not have the budget or patience for search engines to bring them the financial results they need.  Typically these clients are very antsy about the situation, and if they do not see money coming in the doors within the first few months they either do not have the patience or money to continue their campaign.  Avoid a situation like this, not because you do not want to help, but because ninety percent of the time they will feel like you wasted their time and they got nothing to show for it.

2. The second situation is working with a company that does have the budget but only wants to half-heartedly invest in SEO.  There is nothing more frustrating than trying to please a CEO who is constantly down your throat, and who looks at internet marketing as an expense, not an investment.  The truth of the matter is that unfortunately things like company prestige, worth and reputation do not always mean they are willing to give respect to their online presence.  Make sure that you are not working with people who are constantly looking for a reason to cut their campaign short.

Final Thoughts                                                                    

SEO takes time, love, dedication, patience and budget.  If you are providing these services be selective of your clientele and only work with people who will give you the resources you need for your skills to shine.

Business owners: make sure that you have the understanding and desire to engage in an online campaign.  If it is something you are unsure of ask yourself: “Is this a marketing decision that I am willing to invest in for at least a year?”

Share your thoughts, lessons and understandings below:

Posted:business|internet|search engine optimization|seo|Tags:business|engine|optimizaiton|roi|search|seo|

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We love navigating the waters of the web and commenting on what we find. Web designers are starting to strip down websites, favoring images far more than text. The latest and greatest trend in image centric design has to be the hero image.

What is a hero image you ask?

A hero image is located front and center in the webpage banner, or top portion of the website before the scroll break. Hero images can either be static, or dynamic, for example rotating between different images. What all hero images have in common is that, if done correctly are extremely captivating. This gives the user an instant understanding of the tone and content to be expected throughout the rest of the website. Let’s look at a few examples and discuss the benefits of a great hero image in web design.

1. Hero Images Keep Things Simple, And Guide The User Towards An Action

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The simplicity of this hero image helps guide users to the call to action.

This is the most current landing page for Twitter. As you can see there is not a whole lot you can do on the website besides either signing-up or logging in. This helps to keep even the most novice internet user right on track.

2. Captivate Your Audience With Grabbing Imagery

Our team has found that there are times we are inspired to explore a website further just because we like the hero image so much. At this point it is regarded as common knowledge that human beings respond stronger and faster with images than they do with text. Why not take advantage of this fact and stand out amongst all your other competition?

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Give in to the seductive power of the goats and use Bing.

3. Hero Images Help With Responsive Design

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A responsive hero design that will look beautiful across all platforms.

Look at how this website is setup. Because of the great hero image they have used as part of the design it is geared to seamlessly transfer across browsing platforms. Depending on the resolution of screen the image will stretch to make sure that the website is being viewed at optimal levels.
Well that is it for now. If you are in the market for a new website perhaps requesting a design that utilizes a great hero image is something you should consider.

Posted:design|design tips|internet|Salt Lake City web design|UT web design|utah web design|web design|Tags:background images|big images in web design|blown out images|Hero image|images above the fold|images above the scroll break|

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What do you think about social media?  Throughout the years I have seen a pattern in my various social circles.  A social media avenue will arise, and many people will jump onboard.  This process varies from site to site.  Sometimes the support is slow and it takes time for a strong following to manifest.  Other times the popularity of a social site spreads like wildfire.  Regardless, there seems to be a rise, peak, plateau and finally a decline.  Why is that?

Perhaps it is just human nature to get bored with things and want to change after a few years.  True as this may seem, it also makes sense that once you have invested years into your social account that you would not want to redo the work of finding all your friends and building your profile again.  The largest reason I can think for the change is a corruption of the environment.  Once you have over a billion people visiting a website on a daily basis people are going to want to capitalize on that website.  So we get marketers ruining these social outlets, at the same time we find more and more advertisements invading our space.

As a web design company of course we want to participate in these social outlets.  The key is to not spam our followers with constant sales oriented posts.  Rather, provide your followers with helpful and entertaining content and your number of followers is sure to grow.  These principles make total sense to me.  At that point then the responsibility should be in our hands to protect our social environments so that we are not polluting that space with self-serving spam.  The best advice I have ever heard about social media is to remember that these are humans we are dealing with, not a means to an end.  Treat your social profiles like a giant party, act like you would in real life to make connections and start conversations.

The last point of interest I want to bring up is the idea of paying for your page posts on Facebook to be seen by all your fans.  So here is the scenario.  We have a web design page up and running for The Lightwurx on Facebook.  We work hard to get our number of followers up to a point that is respectable and thriving.  Now when we make a post we must pay Facebook anywhere from five to twenty dollars to have that post be seen by all of our fans, as opposed to just a small fraction of them.  What are your thoughts on this?  Personally I feel that it is unfair.  We work hard to make those connections and now in order to communicate with them we must pay for every post.

Comments and thoughts are appreciated below.

Posted:Salt Lake City web design|social media|Tags:SLC|social media|ut|web design|

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I had the pleasure of interviewing an amazing speaker, phenomenal entrepreneur and a great friend of mine: CEO of Sentry Financial Corporation – Jonathan Ruga. Since he co-founded Sentry in 1986 they have loaned over 2 billion dollars to Fortune 1000 companies for equipment financing. He has also authored several professional books and leans himself to several worthy causes as a philanthropist, public speaker and a promoter of a greater well being in the world.

Here’s what he had to say about business, entrepreneurs, and overall doing what you love in life (below is a transcript in written text):

Benjamin: “So yeah, tell us your name and your occupation and the business or businesses you own?”
Jonathan: “Ok, so. My name is Jonathan Ruga. And I’m the Chief Executive Officer on a company called Sentry Financial Corporation. We focus on providing equipment financing to large companies.”

Benjamin: “Do you have advice that you would give to up and coming entrepreneurs or businessmen?
Jonathan: “Really give thought to what is really important to you. What do you really want to do? You know, and so that takes an assessment of what your skills are. Because you tend to like what you’re good at. You do that which you’re passionate about. So, you know, when you’re young you often times don’t know that so you have to explore. But after you’ve done some exploration, then one, I think, key element of advice is, don’t do something, don’t select a career path just because you think it will pay you the most money. That’s very short sighted.”

“I do think it’s important to know who you are and what you’re good at. And then you know, focus on that in an entrepreneurial environment, knowing that if you’re this capable now you, probably with a little effort, can be this capable. What your strengths are and what your weaknesses are. And then when you are face with opportunities you can assess them in light of what you have described as your strategic planning process. So now, because you’ve gone through a planning process you’re more knowledgeable about what you can and can’t do and what you should and shouldn’t do.”

“I was able to learn what I was passionate about through some fortuity and some trial and error. What you really want to do, every day you get up you want to be excited about what you’re doing.”

Benjamin: “Do you have certain strategies when you’re networking when meeting new people?”
Jonathan: “So if I’m in a business setting then absolutely. You have to do your homework. You have to know who you’re going to meet and why you’re going to meet with them. And what you can provide for them and what they can provide for you. But if it’s a social setting it’s very different.”

Benjamin: “So is there a strategy that you use or perhaps used when you first wanted to remember certain peoples’ names?”
Jonathan: “Very common is to repeat it. “Benjamin I’m Jonathanathan Ruga, pleased to meet you.” If you’re introduced to ten people within 15 seconds that’s a little harder to do but many times you’ll be like “Ok, This is Benjamin this is Fergy, this is Scott, this is Kirk.” And then you’re making that imprint. In a more formal business setting getting business cards what I do is; I line them up on my folder or my part of the conference table as they’re seated. So, then when I’m addressing them I’m making contact etcetera, then that solidifies that. So, it’s important to not just be introduced to people but remember who they are and understand who they are.”

Benjamin: “You’re a great speaker, phenomenal speaker; how did you become such?”
Jonathan: “Being successful in anything Benjamin is practicing. And sometimes it’s just natural. You’re not thinking about the fact that I’ve got to practice this, but you just are in situations where that is naturally occurring. So for example when I have to give presentations I prepare and in many cases, not all, but in many cases if it’s a speech in front of a number of people then you can ask my family how many times they get sick of hearing the speech before I’m making it. You’ve got to read, that’s just one of the virtues that exists in our world today. You can learn a lot about a lot of different things through that kind of exploration.”

Benjamin: “So we’ve both heard the expression dress to impress and what that carries. Would you say there is a perfect attire when selling?”
Jonathan: “Understand your audience and dress in accordance with the objectives you seek to achieve with that audience. You never get a second chance to make a good first impression, but appearance is just the first screening and then you get more to the substance. But don’t diminish the ability to make a good first impression.”

Benjamin: “Would you like to tell us a little bit about some of the troubles you’ve experienced through Century and more specifically the lessons you’ve learned from those troubles.”
Jonathan: “One is that if you work hard and you work together that you can overcome all challenges. Not one person can do it. One person can have a material and substantial effect and role, but it takes a team of people to march through challenging circumstances and end up in a positive place. You’ve got to care about other people. So if you really do that, I mean there are some life philosophies that you can’t just separate business from life right? I mean it is all part of the same thing. So if you’re going to be doing good things then, my view is, much more likely good things are going to happen to you. That isn’t the reason to do good things, but it may very well be the consequence. We should all look beyond ourselves and determine how we can positively impact others.”

Benjamin: “Would you say there are myths in business to be aware of?”
Jonathan: “So when you see a deal or some opportunity that sounds too good to be true, it probably is. In other words it probably is a scam. The general rule is, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is too good to be true and therefore it’s not true, so don’t do it. Don’t participate in it.”

Benjamin: “In closing would you say you have anything else you’d like to give?”
Jonathan: “As much as a person knows, whoever the smartest person and the most knowledgeable person in the world is, knows a thimble of the available knowledge. Know your limitations know what you don’t know so that you can fill that void.”

Big thank you to Jonathan for all he does in this world and for sitting down and spending time with us for this interview. Visit us for more marketing, business and web design tips.

Posted:business|entrepreneurs|Fortune 1000|internet|interviews|marketing|Tags:Benjamin Dara|business|dara|entrepreneurs|jonathan ruga|marketing|philanthropy|ruga|ruga sentry|salt lake city|salt lake city business|salt lake city marketing|sentry|sentry financial|sentry financial corporation|SLC|slc business|slc entrepreneur|slc marketing|ut|utah|utah business|utah entrepreneur|utah entrepreneurs|utah marketing|utah philanthropy|

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Whenever you need a service based project done, communication is the key to your success. If you live in Utah then it would be most effective for you to hire a local company first and foremost. The benefits to this are numerous, but most importantly, when you are working with a company that is local you will have a much more streamlined approach to getting your business done.

Web Design In Utah?

Perhaps the greatest benefit is that you will be able to have a face to face consultation with your web designers should you so desire.

To further compliment the effective communication that you will have with your Utah web design company you can also be further guaranteed that the final project will be of your satisfaction. If you do a little research online you can easily find web designers that will be lower priced than many of the local Utah design companies that you can hire. The problem with this of course is that web design is no different than any other product or service that you can pay for. Think of it this way, if you go to the dollar store then you are going to get dollar store quality.

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If you live in metropolis centers such as Los Angeles, New York, etc, going with a web firm based in the Salt Lake Valley makes sense. The differential between cost of living is so vast that literally Utah has a significant advantage over a good portion of the nation due to much lower costs for the same beautiful designs/programming you would get in New York.

The final and perhaps most critical reason for you to hire a web design company centralized in Utah is that you can create relationships. You want a web designer that will keep in contact with you over the years. They need to be able to understand you specific business and what your business will need in order to succeed. If you need future modifications or touch ups to your design than it is always great to be able to have someone that can help you. You want your Utah website design company to be as trusted as your family dentist or a mechanic that you can trust to take care of your vehicle. No matter who you choose to do business with you must make sure that you can be able to trust them above all.

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Salt Lake City Web Design Client Adventures

Our Salt Lake City web designers had a fun weekend blasting cannons off at Coaches Club Cannons in Helper, Utah! The tour guide was quite the tall man. We thought Cody was tall, but he only reached the shoulders of this man. Here’s a video of Benjamin launching off one of the cannons. The video doesn’t do justice as to how loud these things were. The whistling sound is from the bowling ball moving so fast.

Here are some pictures of the trip. Benjamin and Cody got a boost of manliness from the whole experience. They really enjoyed the old western style set-up they had out there.

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Benjamin lighting the cannon

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Cody loading a cannon

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Yo ho yo ho! A pirate’s life for me!

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Boom!

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Now that’s a bang!

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Benjamin and Cody getting ready to blast off some cannons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So if you’re ever in the Salt Lake City area, this is a great activity to check out! We love the people that we get to meet in this website business. Such a variety of folks contact us and all of them have really intrigued us. Stay in tune for more Lightwurx adventures!

 

 

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There are two things you should be focusing on during the process of having a website designed for your or your business. The first point to keep in mind is that you want a well-structured website that meets the needs of your audience, all while properly promoting your brand, product or business. The second aspect to keep in mind is that you want this whole process to be as efficient and cost effective as possible. In order to keep achieve these goals you will need to gather some vital information before-hand. This information will give your website designer in Utah a better understanding of your project needs.

Come up with the goal of your website:

In order for you to find the success you are looking for you must first understand what success means for your website. Maybe the website that you need created is meant to be a sales vehicle, if that is the case then your Utah web designer will take the necessary actions of design and functionality into account. Perhaps your website is meant for entertainment, a project like this will require a lot of java script and flash based mechanisms, again your web design company will take these needs into account. It is up to you to decide the main reason of why your website is being created.

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Decide who your main visitor or target audience is:

There are many subtle nuances that need to be taken into consideration when designing a website to fit the expectations and wants of a certain demographic. For example an older demographic will most likely appreciate a website that is simple in layout, easy to navigate, and above all large buttons for them to easily see while clicking between pages. If you can hone in one who will be accessing your website then your success rate for design will be extremely elevated.

Do your best to decide the theme and feel of your website:

Sure, you are probably not a designer, but that does not mean that you should not have some kind of an idea of what you will want the final presentation of your website to look like. All too often people work with designers. Yet have no idea what they want their website to look like. Give your designer a sense of direction, feel, colors, ideas, and themes so that they can create something to fit your desires. Think about it, you wouldn’t go into subway with the simple instruction of “make me a sandwich please.” You know exactly what kind of sandwich you want, and they make it for you. Your Utah web design experience should be quite similar to this kind of mutual understanding and teamwork.

Finally, get an understanding of your website content:

This means to not only understand how many pages you would like to have created, but also what you want those pages to do. If you would like a blog let your Utah web design expert know. The same is true for if you would like a contact sign-up sheet, a video, a Google Maps page, about us section, company history, or virtually any other page of information you would like to give your visitors. It is a great idea to research companies or products that are similar to yours to see what your competitors are doing. Your Utah website design company will undoubtedly do this research as well. However, the more educated you are about your needs, wants and goals the more time and energy you will save to achieve your goals.

Posted:utah web design|Tags:utah web design|utah website design|utah website design company|

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The evolution of the business world is constant and ever changing. What was once an industry standard can quickly become an archaic tactic that has been cast aside for something new, easier and faster. Unfortunately the world of marketing and advertising is competitive. You cannot just throw money at a problem or think that you have a self-sustaining plan and your focus can now go back to other projects. Internet marketing takes time, energy and commitment to be successful. We are here to give you 5 crucial components that need to be part of any great web marketing strategy.

  1. A Great Web Design: This one may sound obvious, but it is a lot deeper than just having a good looking website. Successful website today has key components in common. The largest is that people are spending a great amount of time on these websites. Having a website that visitors quickly leave will not help your success at all. In fact with the current algorithm for search results it will hurt your ranking to have visitors leave your website within the first few seconds of entering it. It is like we always say, a great website should be somewhere between a painting and a useful tool. Make your website not only pleasing to the eye but pleasing to the brain as well.
  2. Social Media: People do not want to do business with a faceless corporation anymore. Quite the opposite, the internet has become a haven of connectivity and communication. For most businesses it is now a crucial part of their marketing campaigns to have a working and maintained Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn account. When you think about it a company or even small business owner has never before had opportunities like this to connect with their current and future customers.
  3. Search Engine Optimization: If you have heard about this multifaceted approach then you understand this for most industries this is no walk in the park. Ultimately however the benefits are worth the time and energy that it takes to become successful in your search engine rankings. Not only will it bring you more business when your website is on the first page of search engine results for a desired keyword term, it will make your business look more legitimate to searchers and let your competitors know that you are here to stay.
  4. Offline Marketing: You cannot forget about the oldies and goldies. Put your company name, logo and web address on everything. The list includes but is not limited to fliers, advertisements, business cards, emails, letterhead and any other papers goods you can think of. To supplement those efforts, a well maintained list of contacts and email addresses will help you stay organized and understand who it is exactly that you can network with. Tactics like handing out business cards still have a place in marketing. The benefits they have are not only do they make you and your company appears more established, it will bring traffic to your website. With the advent of QR codes you can now have people effortlessly scan the code and be taken to your website on their mobile device.
  5. 5. Always Stay Relevant: The final aspect of any great online marketing strategy is to stay up to date with the changes in your industry. Always compare and contrast what other successful individuals are doing in your particular niche. This includes but is not limited to how functional their website is, how professional it looks, the language and tone they use, if they have photographs and videos, and what graphics your competitors are using. Taking all these aspects into account will assure quality and competitiveness as you move forward with your online marketing and internet strategy campaign.

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My main purpose at the company I work for is SEO. Given the fast paced evolution and competiveness of online marketing, 2/3 of my time is spent on research. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love my job, but sometimes this can get a little dry. So you can imagine my excitement when I was told that I would be attending a conference at the Adobe campus with my colleague and best friend Cody Lueck.

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Cody and myself at the Adobe campus.

I expected a gloomy boring meeting in a bland building. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The moment I entered the building I was mesmerized by what I saw. It was a very modern take on a mixture of the social and educational experience of a campus with the technological pinnacle that is Adobe. The beauty that they accomplished through simplicity was a great experience. Allowing their few art pieces and murals to have a space all their own to impact their viewers. It was a statement; the future of technological design. My favorite part, however, had to be the NASA-like control room.

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I don’t know what exactly this room was for but it was awesome!

When we walked into the conference room, we were so happy to see that they were offering a complimentary dinner because we were starved. Dank burritos, Crunchy chips and salsa, and sweet mother of churros! Adobe knows how to throw a conference. As more people started to show up the excitement grew. The feeling of being surrounded by people who are excited about the field you’re in is electric. If you’re a social person, there is no better way to network and gain contacts.

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A cool indoor fire pit at the adobe campus.

Now, as far as the actual conference presentation goes, it was very in depth. There was no holding your hand here. It was full of very straight forward facts about current trends and ideas to be aware of and research. However, all the information made me realize something. The industry of SEO and internet marketing is growing and changing as fast as technology. And if you’re not willing to take action and learn about the new advances and strategies you’re not going to have the edge to deliver the product to your clients. Needless to say, Cody and I had a lot to talk about on the car ride home.

Posted:business|internet|seo|web design|Tags:Adobe campus Lehi Utah|SEO conference|SEO conference Lehi Utah|

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Just like a garden needs proper preparation to bring crops into fruition, so too does a SEO campaign. We all know a garden doesn’t grow by itself. It takes conscientious planning, energy, and effort to put together an all-star farmers market. Think of SEO and your website in the same fashion.

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The new age of business is an organic one, in which growth is measured not by how quickly you can get somewhere, but how deep rooted your foundation is. Many businesses come and go, yet why is it that some stick?

Our belief is that they have taken the time to properly analyze, market, and relate to their customer base in a way that sets the tone for perennial business to bloom. Let’s pick up a hoe, re-purpose some sod and clear the way for some solid SEO seeds to grow.

Five Things To Prepare Your Website’s SEO Garden:

  1. Research your market & competition.
  2. Do keyword research.
  3. Fill a need.
  4. Know your angle.
  5. Do work son!

For more website tips and tricks visit us again!

Posted:utah web design|Tags:web design|website|website design|

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Following right along with our recent post about flat web design, let’s talk about a vastly different approach to design, skeuomorphism. Skeuomorphism design has basically been around since the very first images were digitally rendered. Skeuomorphism has been defined by Wikipedia as “a physical ornament or design on an object made to resemble another materials or technique.” Um ok… another way of explain this is looking at a classic. Remember the old wood-panel car from National Lampoon’s Vacation movies?

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Skuomorph design at its not so finest.

This incredibly ugly station wagon is a great example of skeuomorph design gone wrong.
A more laymen terms approach to skeuomorphism design is to explain it like this, “to create a design or physical work to resemble a real-life interpretation of a familiar object.” In the above example of the wood-paneled car, they did not use real wood in the construction of this vehicle. Rather, fake, plastic panels were created to mimic the real thing. So what does this have to do with web design?

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Looking back in time to the old user interface designs.

When computers were a new idea, skeuomorphism was used to help people learn how to work their machines by leveraging common everyday items. For example, deleting an item you would throw it in the waste basket, to file things you would put them in a digital manila folder.

So if skeuomorphism is “old” does that mean that it is no longer going to be relevant today? The answer is no. As we mentioned in our blog about flat design, there will always be trends and standards in the world of web design. A few years ago skeuomorphism design was huge. Talented designers were doing everything they could to show off their skills and make physical items come to life in a digital realm.

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Apple’s famous digital calculator is an example of great, skeuomorph design, while Microsoft’s flat designed calculator is keeping things simple and fresh.

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Skeuomorph design used to create a digital soundboard for audio engineers.

There are pros and cons to each design trend. Skeuomorphism can help bridge the gaps between the physical and digital world. While flat design is keeping things simple and easy to use without distractions. In all honesty once an innovative idea gets recognition; it starts to become copied and finally becomes a trend. Once that happens there is a need for a new innovation. Much like clothing and fashion, the world of web design has a lot of players that are constantly changing the game. It is up to great designers to keep apprised of modern standards, while at the same time creating designs that serve a purpose as well. The key is to not get so caught up in trends that you forget to create designs that achieve a goal.

Posted:Creativity|design|design tips|internet|UT web design|utah web design|web design|Tags:Flat design|realistic design|skeuomorph|Skeuomorphism|

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Social Media has become the fastest way for news to hit the general public.  In fact when you stop and think about it, you can acquire huge amounts of news through your social media channels.  I am sure that you have heard: “don’t believe everything you see, hear or read online.”

“False information spreads even more quickly than a high school filled with social butterflies.”

Internet users have to remember that false information spreads even more quickly than a high school filled with social butterflies, desperately trying to get the latest news out about their fellow students.

Below are just a few examples of times when incorrect social media news has gotten the better of the public:

You may or may not have heard that a single tweet for the Twitter account of The Associated Press caused brief, but powerful fear and confusion.  According to the USA TODAY, a tweet was sent out that stated the following: “Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured.”

When that message was sent out, the stock market went crazy, The Dow Jones for example temporarily dropped 143 points.  Granted, this information came from a source that is usually reliable for information.  However it does go to show that no one, not even the president of the United States is safe from false information and the impact that those rumors can have.

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There are countless reasons why this false information is released.  Sometimes people are just bored and want to spread rumors.  Other times it can have malicious intent and someone wants the reputation of another to suffer.  Regardless of the reasons, false information in any sense is generally a bad thing.  Because of the nature of social media it is unlikely that a solution can arise that will validate news as it happens.

So, it is up to us as internet users to not spread around, share or like anything that sounds suspicious or too crazy to be true.  Credibility is important, wait until you can validate something with reliable sources before telling your friends.

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One thing every contractor knows is that marketing your business is important. Whether your website is selling a product or a construction service, people won’t buy it if they don’t know about it. Even if they know about it that doesn’t mean that they will buy it. Not only do you need to get your name out there in the market place, you need to make people who see it want to buy it. How you go about marketing your business is an important aspect of how you will do in the industry. The AIDA funnel is both a simple concept, and a powerful tool.

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AIDA is an acronym that stands for Awareness, Interest, Decision, and Action. Already you may be able to see how this simple acronym can change the way you think about marketing your business, both at your brick and mortar location, and in your web design. By breaking up the idea of marketing into some smaller steps it makes it not only less daunting, but also lays a clear path from where you are to where you want to be. Perhaps more importantly, AIDA is a system you can put in place to continuously generate leads and sales. So let’s break down the AIDA funnel.

  1. Awareness
  2. Awareness is number one in the funnel. The best marketing, through web design or any other medium, all starts from awareness. After all, how are people going to buy from you if they aren’t even aware you exist? Essentially marketing can be construed of your ability to create awareness of your brand. Think about the biggest brands in the world. Even if you don’t drink soda, you know who Coke is. That is because they’ve done such a good job of creating awareness that the entire world is in their funnel. They are certainly an extreme example of awareness, and you can’t expect to build a brand like theirs with just an understanding of the AIDA funnel, but they are certainly someone to learn from. By creating awareness you are taking the first step towards making a sale and growing your business.

  3. Interest
  4. The next step in the AIDA funnel is creating interest. It may seem obvious, but even if you create all the awareness in the world no one will want to use your construction company if they aren’t interested in it. This next step is where you may want to get creative in your strategies. Another brand we can use as an example is Apple. How did they create interest in their products? They had been around for quite some time before they released the ipod. Until the ipod was released though, they were not seen as the technology giant that they are today. What changed? When they released the ipod they came out with something that people hadn’t seen before, and so they were interested.

    From there, Apple was able to build intense customer loyalty and entirely recreate their brand based on the public’s interest in their one product. Any contractor you ask will tell you that customer loyalty and repeat clients are the back bone of a business. So how do you use web design to create interest? That can be anything from showing your value, as Apple did with their ability to innovate, to maybe creating a bit of mystery. When GoDaddy.com came out the commercials didn’t even say what it was they did. They relied entirely on creating awareness, then allowing people to investigate on their own to find out what they did. How your website creates interest in your construction company is up to you, but it is essential that it does.

  5. Decision
  6. Once someone is interested in your service or product, you need to get them to decide on that product. This is often done by demonstrating value. What are you providing them that will make their life better? In the construction industry often the need for a remodel other service is already desired. Your potential client knows that they need a general contractor to get their bathroom redone, or have a new wing put onto the school they run. You don’t need to sell them on that, you need to make them decide on your construction company. What value can you add to their project that the other guy can’t? What do you do better than everyone else? Why do they want to work with YOU? By having a website that shows them that you not only do what they need done, but that you are unique within the construction industry, you create desire for YOUR services. There are many ways to create this desire, but the bottom line is that you need to create that decision on you and your service, instead the rest.

  7. Action

The final step in the AIDA funnel is the action phase. This step is possibly the most important. After they’ve decided that they want your product, they then must act on that decision for you to turn it into a sale. If they don’t act on the decision then you’ve essentially lost the business. On many websites there is what is known in web design as a “call to action” button. This can be as simple as a contact form, or a link to a shopping cart function. Think about it, you’ve seen it on a million websites. “Contact Us,” Order Now,” even as simple as “Download” are all calls to action. In the case of the contact form, you’ve gotten them to reach out to you. All you have to do is close the deal. The best web design companies create effective calls to action. If your s is designed well, you will gain many leads from the traffic on your website. Even if your call to action is as simple as “call us,” when it’s done right, your phone will begin to ring. Once you begin to get those calls it opens up a whole new source for leads that you may not have even known existed before your construction company ever looked into effective web design.

Implementing the AIDA Funnel

With these simple guidelines you can begin to grow your understanding of marketing your construction company online by using the best web design techniques available. How you use the AIDA funnel can be as varied as the fish in the sea. What you do with this knowledge is dependent on your own needs, resources, and creativity. The framework of the AIDA funnel is very simple, but that makes it very flexible and effective when applied intelligently. Hopefully you have learned a little something about online marketing and now have a new tool you can use to build your business.

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There is so much content out there on the internet that sometimes it can feel like a huge challenge just to stand out.  Amongst the never-ending sea of blogs, articles, forums, and social communication how does one get their message across?  Content writing is just like anything, there is no magical secret that has eluded you.  However, there are sound principles that can greatly increase the quality of your content.  Proper implementation of these principles can lead you to success.  Below are some of the greatest lessons I have learned while working for a Salt Lake City web design company.

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Become a Storyteller

Whenever you think about making a point through verbal communication there is a pattern that can be easily viewed.  In logical arguments, there are three steps: premise, inference, and conclusion.  The same is true for an essay.  You have the intro, body and conclusion.  Finally, the same is true for storytelling with the beginning, middle and end.

The main point here is to remember to tell a captivating story the follows a logical pattern.  Remember a gripping climax is the most important.  Your story needs to go somewhere in order for your reader to feel as though they went on a journey with you.

Write Content That People Actually Want to Read

Many times blogging and article writing becomes routine and un-creative.  It is all too easy to write about an esoteric subject just to throw in some more keywords to your website.  I am here to tell you today that this is no longer beneficial.  Not only is the internet becoming more social and share worthy content is getting praised.  Google has made significant changes as of late to help ensure that only high quality content gets recognized.

Diversification

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Throughout the years we have found that writing about several different subjects will do a lot more benefit than covering one subject to the point of ad nauseum.  Cover a wide range of interesting and helpful topics. Remember you want to entertain, inform or just straight up make your readers laugh.  Don’t be afraid to break out of your industry and every once in a while talk about something that may not even be directly related to your business.

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There are many different reasons as to why you need a website designed and developed for you. Perhaps you have a friend who has a basic knowledge and they offer to do a design for you for free. Maybe you prefer to try and do something yourself with a content management system like WordPress. Or even still, you are representing a company that needs a great looking professional website. Regardless of why you require a website, the thing to remember is that you want it to be effective with your goals. The remainder of this blog is to help those who are looking for a professionally made website.

What to look for in a website design company in Utah

If you are still looking for just the right person to do your website, then there is a good chance that you typed something into a search engine and started looking at the top results. This is a great way to start. If a company is showing up on the top of specific keyword searches it helps to show credibility and it shows that they have taken the necessary time with their search engine optimization campaign. Most importantly it shows that these design companies can actually get results. It wasn’t just by random luck that these companies got to the top, they fought for it.

Make sure that when you are looking at these websites for utah web design companies, first and foremost you look at the quality of their own website.

From our perspective their company website should be one of their finest pieces of work, after all it was work done for them. The next step is to look at their projects or portfolio section. Look at the work that they have done in the past. Any reputable designer will have large sections of their previous work available for you to see and go over. Make sure to note the industries that they have worked with in the past as well. It is a huge bonus if the design company you are considering has done work that is relevant to you.

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