Tag Archives: web developer agency

Point of Contact: 4 Reasons Why Having a Website is Essential for Small Businesses in 2019

why website is important

I have what I call a low-profile Instagram account. I use this mostly to keep myself in the loop of what people I admire (mostly musicians) is up to and for the endless stream of jokes. I still set my profile to public and used my real name for the account but I’ve never told a single soul about my profile and yet, barely a week after I set up the account, people I went to high school and college with began following my account. It can be really easy to find people or businesses you’re looking for online.

Given this, it’s common to see businesses forgoing website entirely and simply limit their presence to the various social media platforms available. With the sheer amount of social media platforms available, you can bet that each slice of the population is properly served by at least one platform and on a purely technical level; businesses don’t need a website for customer’s reference. Then again, I don’t technically need Spotify to listen to music but there’s no way I’m cancelling my Premium subscription. In a way, website and web development occupies that same position in that they’re vital to the success of your business.

Having a place to call your own

For me personally, having my own personal space is important, both metaphorically and physically. Every month, I always try to dedicate a single weekend where I can be in a place where no one I know will ever find me. Even if it’s technically a public place, it’s always nice to carve your own corner of the world that just for a moment belongs to you. There’s this unassuming coffee shop near where I live for example that even on the weekends is never full that I regularly use if I don’t feel like making a trip.

In a way, this is what I consider websites to be, your own little corner of the internet that belongs to you. Your business’ website is your business’ personal space while by comparison; your Instagram or Facebook page is like your seat in the theater. Yes, technically it’s your space but it’s also cramped and you’re still very much in close proximity with the other patrons. Websites could offer your business the kind of freedom and flexibility that social media platforms couldn’t, and this freedom could help your business in 4 different ways.

Websites help lend a sense of professionalism

Anyone can open Instagram/Facebook/Twitter/(Insert social media platform here) and open an account there but to set up a website and everything that goes with a website requires considerably more commitment. Of course, there’s an ocean of difference between a well-thought-out and properly designed website and something that looks like as if it’s been assembled together in less than 10 minutes so having a website for the sake of having website won’t be enough. Think of having a website as going to a job interview wearing your best clothes and you won’t be too far off the mark.

Websites give you the freedom on contents

For example, many moons ago Instagram requires every image uploaded on the platform to have the shape of a square. That restriction no longer applies but there are still some limitations on what you could post on Instagram, like video lengths and how you can’t include external links on your post. Yes, you could argue that for videos, you have access to YouTube and Vimeo but those platforms have limitations of their own and there’s not a single social media that could reliably accommodate everything you’ll ever need.

Websites aren’t perfect, especially if you’re sticking to a pre-existing theme, but they have much less restrictions on what you could do compared to social media platforms and you could still include contents from your social media feed to your website if you want to. Dedicated websites are especially useful if you have the capability to create interactive contents. For those working in the creative industry, the restrictions on social media platforms can be particularly suffocating.

They’re practically required for businesses dealing in e-commerce

Have you ever tried ordering stuff online through e-mails or texts? I have and it was a bit annoying. There was this boutique watchmaker I’m interested in but it turns out that one of the items they have on display on their Instagram account isn’t available on their website. I asked them about this over text and it turns out they do have that particular item available, just not on their website. I ended up having to order it through text where I have to write the detailed specification of the item, my personal details, etc.

If you’re in the business of selling things, you are practically required to have a website and regularly updates said website when you have new things in stock or when a particular product is sold out. Having to go through that laborious process of ordering through text over and over again is just annoying. For example, take a look at what Undone Watches have done, where customers and potential customers could customize their watches through their website and see how it’d look like in real time instead of having to list their preferred specifications.

They’re now made easier with website builders

There’s the ubiquitous WordPress for one but if you’re looking for something more minimalist and classy, take a look at what Squarespace or Wix is capable of. Squarespace and Wix highly values simplicity and accessibility while being aesthetically pleasing. Both Squarespace and Wix are very easy to use but you’re going to have to sacrifice some degree of customization, which is somewhat similar to how Apple controls their platforms. These platforms also comes equipped with a tool to help with the more complex idea of SEO or to set up an e-commerce site, which can be a boon for business owners that have a limited understanding of web development.

Develop A Successful Business Through Making Creative To-Do Lists

Creative to-do list

I never consider myself a diligent person, but when it comes to paying attention to details, I am that person. When I am planning to do something, I have to know the details first. My friend and I kind of have this idea of starting a business but I refuse to start it if we don’t have enough resources and time for the branding. I said to him, “We ought to conduct several researches and we don’t just randomly name our business out of spontaneity. Branding is the Queen. Content is the King. Also, we have to have our own social media presence and a website as well.” And he replied, “Leave the web design and development to me. You do social media.” Having discussed the first step, we realised that both of us are not considered as a diligent person. Sometimes we forgot things and other times we did not keep our priorities straight. Since we love this coming-soon business and we want to succeed, we have read so many articles, watched inspiring YouTube videos and read books written by famous entrepreneurs and finally, summed it up into one final solution; the to-do list. I’m sure most of you are aware about to-do list because almost (but not all) everyone has it. However, not all people know the values that to-do list can give to those who are ambitious, especially if the to-do list is creatively made. How do we make creative to-do list to develop a successful business? Keep reading to find out!

Write down the To-Do, the Not-To-Do and the Need to Know

Before planning to write your assignments, first you need to write down what you need to do, what you should not do and what you need to know. Whatever it is that comes into your mind, write it down until you feel there is nothing left to write. It’s okay if it sounds so random at first. You can do the next step to arrange it.

Meet the MITs

After writing down your list, start arranging them from the Most Important Tasks (MITs). Make sure you’ve got the MITs listed as the top priorities. This will remind you every day that you must finish the prioritised tasks first. That way, you will keep your priorities straight and consistent.

Make it public

Well, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to show off your to-do list to everyone on social media. Make your list “known” by the people around you – your house maybe. You can do simple things like putting a sticky note on your refrigerator containing your MITs. This will let the people in your house know about your goals and when notice that you forget, they will remind you about it. This will also help you get yourself on track and motivate you to finish it.

Be specific

When you are writing a to-do list, make sure you avoid writing something like “work on research paper”. That will sound too vague to process. Instead, break it down into more specific actions. For example, write “conduct a research on competitors’ social media presence for 15 days and learn from them,” and “work on the report.”

Make unique In-game Quest-like goals

I don’t know about you, but what makes me stay interested in playing a game is the quest completing. A human mind is somewhat simple; as a human we’d like to collect things. When I see quests and the rewards I can get from finishing the quests, I feel so motivated to play the game. The reward is simple; a badge. There is something about merit badges that make me want to achieve one by one by completing the quests. Not only does this give me more badges, collecting those badges alone also makes me feel satisfied. Moreover, it’s not just about the badges. Collecting a certain number of badges will also get me promoted to the next higher level or at least boost my status in that game. Perhaps, you can also do the same thing for your to-do list. Make your to-do list fun game-like quests that you wish to achieve, only in a more serious way than just a game with an addition of some fun in it. Add some rewards like badges and treat yourself when you are one step ahead. For example, you create this badge called “The Super Owner Badge” and in order to achieve that badge, you have to complete 10 quests at the starting level. And those quests are your first MITs in your to-do list. After achieving that badge, you can move to the next level. It is fun, isn’t it? I do that too every day and it gets me motivated. If I can, you can too.

The main important thing about to-do list is your determination to do your best to finish your tasks one by one and create new plans to deal with the future. Business owners are always faced with new things in the future and the better way to overcome it is by being prepared for what is to come. Creating to-do list is one of the ways to get you prepared.

Like Moths to a Flame: 4 Ways in How to Attract More Customers to Your Website

web development tips

We’ve arrived at an age where quality is actually not a primary concern; it’s discoverability that’s the issue. A couple of months ago, I was looking for a new pair of shoes to wear semi-daily for work. Since I’m going to be abusing this pair of shoes, so to speak, for an extended period of time, I was looking for something that would look good on a meeting while still being rugged enough to handle my commute and cheap enough that I won’t feel guilty when I have to step into a puddle or whatever. Clearly, I was up for quite a challenge.

To my surprise, I actually managed to find a pair that fits most of the above requirements while being somewhat above of my intended price range. Still, I ended up buying that pair of shoes only to later on find another pair from another brand that also meets the above requirements while still being considerably cheaper. Given the amount of things available on the internet, it’s very likely that it has everything you’re looking for, the issue in web development is how to make it so that you’re easier to find in the first place.

Getting some time on the spotlight

Take for example the online dating app Tinder. In the app, there’s a premium feature named ‘Boost’ that would enable your profile to jump ahead of the queue and be instantly displayed on other Tinder users around you. It costs money and since I’m cheap, I’ve never personally used it and I’ve been regularly getting matches anyway but a close friend of mine have a Tinder Plus account and I’ve seen firsthand just how useful this Boost feature can be.

Of course, getting a match is far easier than to land an actual date but you’d be in a much better place compared to those still swiping for matches and the same thing applies to web development. Sure, having a high-quality website, products and contents are definitely important but those are a moot point if you can’t even get people to actually see your website in the first place. There’s so much data floating around the internet that I don’t think anyone has actually come up with an estimate, which is why you should seriously consider these ways in attracting more potential customers to your website.

Blogging

Yep, you read that right. What used to be an outlet for angsty and emotional teenagers to rile against the collective world is now considered one of the primary drivers for traffic. This isn’t much of a surprise, one of the main things people learn to use the internet for is to look up things on Google and when you’re looking for answers to a question that Wikipedia can’t answer, search engines would usually lead you to blog posts. To this day, the majority of websites I visit are blogs.

I regularly visit music blogs like Stereogum and Pitchfork because their website came up when I was looking for reviews on a particular album and that’s just one example. Blogs are a great way of showcasing your knowledge or point of view in your own terms and people are always looking for writings on a topic they care about, making blogging a valuable channel to introduce yourself to people. I found that people are all natural writers when it comes to things they care about so if you haven’t tried blogging yet, now would be a good time to start.

Having a presence on social media

The likes of the Kardashian-Jenner clan managed to build a multi-million dollar empire thanks to their presence on social media. It doesn’t matter where your opinion lies on their existence because you can’t deny just how much social media have helped them to where they are now. For a more conventional example, look at how the watch brand Daniel Wellington became the poster boy for 21st century marketing through their clever use of social media.

Of course, learning to do social media properly can be a bit tricky and even with the amount of time and effort you’re putting into this, it’s actually very possible that you might not hit the target you set out for yourself when it comes to social media. Still, given the outsized success of the examples I’ve mentioned above, social media is definitely something worth trying out and there are a bucketload of tips you could find online you could use to help you with this. It’s not like it’s going to hurt your business anyway.

Use promotions and giveaways

When Epic, the company behind the global video game hit Fortnite decided to open up a digital video game platform of their own, the aptly named Epic Games Store, they did so by offering gamers one free game every two weeks. The free games are decided by Epic and given the still-limited offering available at their stores, it probably won’t be to everybody’s liking but so far, I found the offering to be more than decent. Still, everybody likes free stuffs and if they like what you’re giving, there’s a good chance they’ll come back for a second round.

Leverage the power of YouTube and video marketing

A report from the entertainment publication Variety that came out in 2014 details just how popular YouTube celebrities are among the younger member of the population. Do you even recognize the name Smosh, The Fine Bros., PewDiePie, KSI and Ryan Higa? I’m ashamed to say that I don’t and I have it on good authority that I’m better read than the majority of my peers. I wouldn’t even know who Logan Paul was if it wasn’t for that Aokigahara scandal. My point is, YouTube can feel like a world unto its own and it would be a huge waste for businesses to not try and tap into that world.