Web Design and Drupal Development Blog

5 Tips to Improve Website Usability

Confused User - Improve Website Usability

Improving website usability is really important to maximise the enjoyment of the site for users. If you're unsure of what usability is then you can read more from the king of Usability Jacob Neilsen.

In short, good usability allows you to have a successful site by increasing its' effectiveness allowing the user a good experience and smooth interaction.

I was looking online for a pair of shoes the other day and came across a site that made me stick around just to see how annoying it was! It didn't take long to get my goat. As you will see I've got great taste ;)

http://www.pointerfootwear.com

Pointer hompage, poor website usability example

This site has some great shoes to browse through but a number of usability issues that should be addressed.

5 Tips To Improve Website Usability

#1 - Alt Tags on Imagery

Social Media Optimization: Optimize Your Social Media Marketing

Social Media Optimization: How to Optimize Your Social Media Marketing

If you're not familiar with my last post, Social Media Marketing: Are You Wasting Your Time?, do read it before going on.

In it I discuss the issue of social media marketing and how if not channelled correctly can cost you valuable time from your work day. Are you prone to trying out the next new social site without having any goals or aims in sight?

If you are, then you need to consider how much time you're putting into Social Media Marketing (SMM) and what you're getting out. If your ROI is small then you need to optimize your SMM.

"The best thing I ever did was shut off my Digg account. I gained a few hours a week and after 6 months have never noticed any negative impact on my site or my business."

Social Media Marketing: Are You Wasting Your Time?

social media marketing: are you wasting your time?

If you own your own business then you're always thinking of ways to gain new clients or customers and how to spread the word. One of the best ways is via Social Media Marketing (SMM). You can get your business in front of those people you most want to target and converse with them in ways no other medium can.

But, it's also one of the biggest wastes of your valuable time. Due to its' natural tendency to make you play the game and chase the numbers SMM can distract you from what's important.

Technology provides us with more opportunity, more opportunity to waste time.

"Oh I got 100 maybe 1,000 or more visitors to my site yesterday from Digg, what a triumph, wait til I tell my colleagues."

Whoopie do well done you! All that time sending shouts really paid off. All those messages on other social sites got so much attention for your site.

Blogger Appreciation Day

blog monkey

Today is (un)officially Blogger Appreciation day, well Darren Rowse started the worthy cause and Chris Garrett developed it into appreciation of those that comment on your blog.

It's your comments that highlight points missed or subjects to cover so keep them coming.

So here are the great and good that have all so far commented on my blog, it's only a new born monkey creation so props (respect cause I'm hip, on the cutting edge ouch!) to my early adopters:

Ed Rouch
Barry Welford
Rachel Phillips
Rob Safuto
Mel
Patricia Skinner
SexySEO

I'm not a brand, am I?!

personal branding

Branding is a waste of money, who needs it. I certainly don't. I'll leave it to the big boys, the Starbucks, Apples and Coca Colas of this world.

These companies spend huge amounts of money on packaging and staff training, something I certainly can't afford to do.

All my spare cash goes on advertising and marketing my company.

If this is you Stop right there, you need to realise everything you or your company does is affecting your brand.

If you've been reading this article so far and agreeing with everything I've written then you're not fully grasping what constitutes a brand.

You may be a sole trader, a new startup business or even an established company but one thing you all have in common is that you all own a brand.

Branding is not just plastering your logo across every piece of marketing you produce. It's not just getting colour coordinated clothing for your staff.

A brand is all these things and more.

6 Actions To Get Your Website Off The Ground

6 Actions To Get Your Website Off The Ground

Just started out? Opened a bank account, registered at Companies House and now want a website but not sure what you need?

Often I have new business owners come to me with wide eyes and bright ideas but soon become tongue tied when the word website is mentioned.

Technology can be a frightening thing for a number of people which is why I've written this post to help explain exactly what is required.

6 Actions To Get Your Website Off The Ground

#1 Domain Name: eg. www.example.com

First off you need a domain name which is the name given to your website and would normally be your company name. Some thought should be given to this and research done into availability.

Free Publicity For Your Business

Free Publicity For Your Business Using Press Releases

We all crave publicity for our business and when it doesn't dent the bank balance then all the better.

We can all spend hundreds or even thousands of pounds on advertising but do you know if you will get a decent return on investment?

The answer to that question is invariably no. So where does this free marketing come from?

The Business Press Release

I've found that the press release is such an under used source of free marketing and that is such a shame as it can really boost your brand.

Whether you've got a product to launch or a recent project to promote a press release can be a great starting point in your marketing plan.

Local Exposure

Why not contact your local newspaper and see if they have a particular section you could feature in. Or even better than that make yourself available for an interview or photograph.

I've had great success with this for a number of client's and it's a tried and tested method for many companies.

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