All Posts By

Editorial Staff

16 Website Designs with a Touch of Red

As technology slowly progresses in taking over the major areas of our lives, it begs the question of how it’s going to subtly integrate with our lives more so than just run it? In this roundup of website inspiration I decided to fixate my attention on subtle touches of red.

We don’t always realize it, but most of the time a touch or splash of color makes a big difference on a white canvas and in the era that simplicity is mostly overlooked, it’s something we should pay attention to.

Whilst there are tons of platforms and CMS’ to choose from, WordPress has become one of our favorite platforms to build websites on. WordPress gives you a range of flexibilities for developing your site over something that is static and require an engineer to help you setup. WordPress theme packages such as this one offer a great base from which to develop the aesthetics of your website.

If you need some ideas about what is needed for a website, check out the article on The Elements of an oustanding website design and if you need more inspiration than that, make sure to check out Abduzeedo’s daily inspiration.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

4 Google Analytics features which you must use

Google Analytics is one of the most useful online tools available that helps you track the performance of your website by determining how many visitors visited your website, their demographics, during which period they came, and how much time they spent browsing your website. It also helps you to monitor the effectiveness of your online marketing campaigns by delivering several useful insights.

This post shares the top 4 Google Analytics features which you must use in order to take optimum benefit from this incredible tool offered by search engine giant Google.

1. In-Page Analytics

It is an invaluable option offered by Google Analytics to provide detailed information pertaining to your website traffic. This feature provides exhaustive data about the key statistics related to each page of your website. Using this feature you can find out the links which get maximum attention from your visitors and how they interact with your website.

The In-Page Analytics feature also provides the insightful information about the vital website metrics including average time sent on the page by visitors, bounce rate, page views, conversion rates etc. You can use this information for improving the overall user experience of your website.

2. Custom Audience Segments

Visitor segmentation is another useful feature offered by Google Analytics. You may be missing crucial information related to your website visitors by not leveraging this useful feature. It helps you group and segregate your website visitors, according to distinct physiognomies such as age, gender, affinity, location and other demographic characteristics. In order to check the visitor segmentation data, all you need to do is select “Audience” from the main menu and then click “Interests” or Demographics. You can also create the custom segmentation reports using this feature.

3. Multi-Channel Funnels

If you are seeking insights pertaining to how your website visitors purchase the products and services offered online, then this is the feature you must start using. The online visitors come from various channels to your website and purchase the products. These channels may not always be your online advertisements but can be the link provided on your blog post or though organic search. This tool helps you to get relevant information about how your customers reached the website and using this information you can improve your online marketing strategy. You can also work on fine tuning the resources using which your visitors are coming to your website to purchase the products or services.

4. Tracking the Site Speed

One of the most imperative aspects of a website is its loading speed. Most of the SEO companies give great emphasis to site speed in order to improve the user experience and the overall rankings of the website. Using Google Analytics you can easily check your website’s speed by accessing the “Site Speed” metrics. Click on Behaviour -> Site Speed -> Overview to get information about the loading speed of your website.

Efficient Online Project Management Software for Teams of All Sizes

A big corporation has many separate departments to manage. The challenge is to make the whole organization fit together like a clock. Only when all the parts are functioning properly will the clock give right time. In this era of cutting edge technology and software, big corporations use project management software to properly handle all their separate parts and track the progress of ongoing projects.

Top-tier project management tools are multi-functional and versatile, offering features to cover every aspect of a project. These tools also make it easy to get insight into the status of ongoing processes, even if you are a remote team member, or away from your work station.

Wrike is revolutionizing work and how businesses handle data by offering the best software for project management. They’ve developed a platform to make getting work done easier. In our fast-paced world, a tool like this is becoming almost mandatory for all types of businesses. Here’s a preview of what Wrike offers to put it firmly at the top of the market:

1. Accessibility and task management

The project management software provides a work space for getting real work done, sharing document, and holding discussions. Keeping all work and conversations in one platform means it takes less time to get team members up to speed, and increases productivity substantially. Distance has been removed from between remote teams, and cross-functional teams have the visibility to check in on progress without extra emails or status update meetings.

wrike-1

2. Resource control and cost management

This software helps you nip project risks in the bud by available tracking resources and budgets. Managing your resources effectively means you can react to critical situations before it’s too late. The tool itself is very cost effective and doesn’t demand huge infrastructure installation.

3. Time management

Track where your employees’ time is going with their time management capabilities. You can use their time log to keep timesheets for your billable employees, or track productivity using their advanced reporting features.

4. Flexible platform to bend to your needs

Cloud-based project management tools are specifically built to evolve with needs of a growing organization; no need to go hunting for a new tool all over again just because your team has expanded. Wrike’s platform is flexible enough that it can be upgraded and adapted to suit your new business needs in no time.

5. Integrations with your other favorite tools

This software offers integrations with other popular work and management tools. Integrating all your tools into one easy-to-check space helps professionals stay organized and on-track with all their work. With the help of the Android and iOS apps, you can access work from your phone from wherever you’re standing.

wrike-2

6. Regular feature updates

When you invest your time and money into a new tool, you want to make sure they’re going to keep improving their software to make your experience better and better. Wrike regularly releases updates to give users more tools and improved experiences for existing features.

Wrike online project management software provides a system for transparency and proper communication throughout your organization. Choosing this platform to improve the way you run your business is almost a no-brainer.

Renting vs Buying Your Printer

Businesses all over the world in every industry are always looking at the best ways to save on costs. However, this has become even more essential in today’s economic climate where cost effective decisions can make or break the success of a company.

With the increased need to save money wherever possible, the idea of renting office equipment has gained increased interest and now third party companies specialise in renting equipment such as printers and photocopiers to companies that may not want to buy these expensive items.

The choice to either rent or buy your office printer should be based solely on what type of business you are and what are your printing requirements.

Multi-functional printers

Multi-functional printers can be a lifesaving tool in offices that need to be able to print, scan, copy and fax a large amount of files in a day. However, this comes at a price and usually quite a high one at that. For companies and businesses which are relatively small or are just starting out, there may not be room in the strict budget for such a high-end, high-cost item. While the benefits of having a multi-functional printer in the office may include increased efficiency and increased productivity; if the money isn’t there then the budget won’t allow for the purchase of such a printer.

Renting

renting
This is where renting a printer may be of most benefit. Renting a multi-functional printer can cost a fraction of the price each month than buying one would. Companies can choose to rent a printer for a set amount of time on short or long term plans. This can give your business time to become fully set up and functional so that saving can begin to buy a printer outright.

Renting a printer can also be very useful for businesses that are holding conventions, meeting or conferences. You can rent a printer to use at your location, allowing you to be able to print, scan or copy any important documents you may need or promotional material you would like to hand out. Printer renting is also beneficial for businesses that may not need the use of a multi-functional printer on to day to day level. If you have a large project approaching and need the additional technology to manage the workload then hiring a multi-functional printer may be your best option rather than spending a large amount of money buying something that you may only rarely use again.

Buying

buying
For larger businesses it almost seems a necessity to buy a fully featured multi-functional printer. In large, busy working environments where there is a constant need for printing, faxing and copying then renting a printer may not be your best option. If there is a high volume of document workflow in your offices then you will always be in need of a high quality printer. Renting one out on a permanent basis may cost you much more in the long run than simply buying one of your own.

For big businesses with a high volume of documented workflow the best solution is to buy a high quality multi-functional printer, such as those provided by Midshire. It may be a big outlay to begin with but can be much less costly than renting a printer long-term.

The decision of whether you choose to buy a multi-functional printer or whether you choose to rent one should be based upon what type of business you run, how big your company is and how much document workflow your company processes each day. What might suit one company may not suit another so make your decision based on what is most beneficial to your business.

How to Increase Your Business Fundraising Efforts This Christmas

Businesses can get involved with fund-raising efforts in a number of different ways. There is no right or wrong approach to raising funds for a good cause.

Here are a few of our suggestions for how to raise funds.

1. Hold a Casual Dress Day at Work

Will office staff prefer to be able to dress casually on an agreed upon date in exchange for a donation to the fundraising effort? You may discover that employees would be only too happy to sit in the office wearing more comfortable attire for the day for a modest fee.

2. Sell Through Amazon, Donate The Commissions

Businesses quite often use a blog to communicate with their customers. They also use email communication to keep in touch and update them with news and product releases. Companies can use either of these methods to promote related products that sell on Amazon.co.uk and pay a commission.

When promoting products on Amazon there is usually a tiered commission rate that can be earned for each referred sale within a given period of time. Other third party products that were bought at the same time as the referred product will also receive a commission too.

Commission revenue from Amazon can begin as a trickle, but build up as more customers are made aware that referral commissions are part of the fundraising efforts of the company. This is one tip that can continue to raise funds for good causes throughout the year, not just at Christmas time.

3. Print-on-demand Fundraising Cards

Instead of sending out traditional Christmas cards, Thank You cards, and other printed messages to customers, why not use IQ Cards? These can be used by any business that wants to help raise money for their local schools.

4. Cash Wash Service

Why not get the staff together one Saturday to offer a car wash service to anyone who wants one? Charge a reasonable fee for the car wash as part of the fund-raising efforts. Customers can be notified through the usual communication channels about the car wash event which gives their staff a chance to meet face-to-face in a more casual setting.

5. Fundraising Raffle at Work

Consider having a fundraising raffle where only half the sales of tickets go back into raffle prizes and the other half of the proceeds go towards the fund-raising goals? Staff are much more likely to participate when they know that half the proceeds go to the right cause.

6. Seek Donated Services

See if other companies will offer donated services where they provide the service for free on the understanding that the usual cost of their service goes to fundraising causes. This can have a feel-good factor for both companies concerned and also foster positive ongoing business relationships at the same time.

7. Hold a Staff Sports Day

Would your staff enjoy a chance to play a friendly game against either their own work colleagues or a local competitor? Take donations for each player who wishes to join in with the staff sports day.
Christmas time is a great opportunity to raise funds for worthy causes. People are feeling more generous and open to making donations than at other times of the year. What ideas can you come up with to increase your business fundraising this holiday season?

Digital Marketing Tips for Retailers This Christmas

Christmas is a busy time for most retailers. However, some fare better than others in the run-up to the festive season. Digital marketing provides access to a wider audience of potential customers who may be interested in what you have to offer. The lead to conversion rate at Christmas soars, but finding the leads in the first place is often a problem for retailers who don’t have a digital marketing plan. The following tips, provided by marketing agency Lead To Conversion, will help you with your digital marketing endeavors this Christmas.

Get Active on Social Media

Social media websites like Facebook and Twitter have the potential to change the fortunes of businesses, especially at Christmas. Posting regular, valuable content on all your social media channels reminds customers about your business. It also attracts a new audience. The power of social media really comes to light when you publish high quality content people are willing to share. Contests, relevant special offers, local events, in-depth product descriptions, buying guides and other useful information are examples of shareable content that leads to increased sales.

Leverage the Power of the Main Events in the Run-up to Christmas

Many retailers don’t realize that other organizations have indirectly done much of the marketing for them already. Two good example of this are Black Friday and Cyber Monday. As a retailer you can add your own touch to these events. Once again your website, blog and social media channels are the perfect tools to promote you version of these events.

Optimize your Content for Christmas

If you get a lot of traffic from the search engines, you know the power of SEO. However, many businesses don’t optimize their websites to avail of the huge increase in volume of Christmas-related and gift-related searches in November and December. Simply adding words like ‘Christmas’, ‘holidays’, ‘gifts’ and the year to website content and product descriptions can dramatically increase organic traffic that would not have found your website otherwise.

Give Your Website and Social Media Pages the Seasonal Touch

Following on from this, it’s important to get visitors into the Christmas spirit when they visit your website and social media channels. The easiest way to do this is to add a Christmas theme to your website or to at least add Christmas-themed images. Creating a Christmas feel and look on your website is a simple, yet effective way to improve each customers experience on your website. When they see that you’ve put in the effort, they may be more likely to purchase from you than a competitor who doesn’t go the extra mile.

Make it Easy for Shoppers

As Christmas day draws closer, shoppers become more anxious. Make shopping on your online store easy. Simple ways to make customer shopping experiences stress-free for customers are to de-clutter your website, have an easy-to-use checkout facility and offer free shipping, within reason.

There are many ways retailers will benefit from the power of digital marketing this Christmas. Some will do the work themselves, while others will call in a professional digital marketing agency. Unfortunately many other retailers are not aware of the benefits of digital marketing or don’t believe investing in it will increase their bottom line. However, for those who implement a well-thought out Christmas digital marketing strategy, the benefits can be huge.

How to Make a Killer Presentation

Very few people actually enjoy public speaking. At best it is nerve wracking; at worst you feel like a bug under a microscope with a million eyes staring at you. Anxiety comes with the territory when giving presentations, but there are ways to beat your nerves.

Practice makes perfect and you should find that the more presentations you have to give, the easier they become. However, if you want your presentations to be memorable for all the right reasons, here are a few tips to ensure your next one is a killer.

Be Prepared

There is nothing worse than arriving at the venue five minutes before your presentation begins, and then spending the next thirty minutes preparing the equipment while your audience is left waiting. Always allow plenty of time to prepare for a presentation, especially if you need to set up a projector or other equipment.

Make Eye Contact with the Audience

Standing at the front of the room, staring at a piece of paper and mumbling a lot is not going to endear you to your audience. Instead, speak with confidence and project your voice into the audience, making eye contact with everyone in the room at least once. People will trust you more if you talk directly to them – avoiding eye contact makes you look shifty.

Death by PowerPoint

powerpoint
PowerPoint presentations are very popular, but the slides should be a visual aid rather than the entire presentation. Too many slides with too much information on them will cause your audience to switch off completely.

Tell Stories

Reciting facts and figures for an hour is extremely boring. A presentation needs to be entertaining to keep an audience engaged. By all means included facts and figures, but try and present them in an interesting way. Use stories and anecdotes to keep the audience amused – they are more likely to pay attention.

Have a Sense of Humour

Amusing presentations with some humour thrown in are more memorable. If you can make your audience smile, great, but if you can make them laugh out loud, even better.

Show Some Passion

presenting
Be passionate about your subject. Don’t just read from a sheet of paper. This implies you don’t know the subject matter very well, which indicates you don’t care very much about it. You want the audience to care about what you are saying, but they won’t care one jot unless you make them feel an emotional connection.

Project Confidence

Try and act confident, even if you don’t feel confident. If you appear nervous, everyone in the room will feel deeply uncomfortable on your behalf.

Give Handouts

Prepare handouts for the audience so they can take the most important information away with them. Buy stylish presentation folders from showcasecreative.com. Include a business card and other useful marketing materials if you want to make it easier for interested individuals to contact you after the event.

Presentations are something you can’t avoid, so plan ahead, practice at every opportunity, and make every one of them count.

Why Pre-Built Websites Could be a Productivity Game Changer

Every so often, a new and innovative approach surfaces to make creating a website easier than ever. Up until now, website creators have always been faced with several choices: 1) Do the design, and turn the coding over to a developer, 2) do both the design and development, or 3), turn the entire project over to a professional.

Each has its pros and cons, but there is a new approach to building a website, and it can be a game-changer.

Instead of sketching out a conceptual design and creating a wireframe model, the starting point is a pre-built website. It is editable, and it is fully customizable.

  • Your conceptual design is only a click away, allowing you to get off to a rapid start.
  • The tools are affordable. They cost a small fraction of the cost of turning the project over to a professional developer.
  • The savings in time and effort will significantly increase your productivity.

Pick an example from the pre-built website pages shown below (source: Be WordPress Theme). Imagine how quickly you could create a website when you have the freedom to replace text and images with your own.

Christmas
1

Typo
2

Burger
3

Web Design
4

Digital
5

IT Service
6

Constructor
7

Journalist
8

Using Muffin Builder 3 to Edit a BeTheme Pre-built Website

Start with one of BeTheme’s more than 150 pre-built websites. It takes but 1 click to install. Having done that, the next step is to begin t build the website you have in mind with Muffin Builder 3. This latest version of the popular page builder enables Be, a ThemeForest top seller, to perform better than ever.

The video shows you why. Muffin Builder 3 has a cleaner, easier to follow user interface, improved navigation, and faster than ever data transfer. Muffin Builder has always been an intuitive tool to work with, but this newest version is something that you should look into.

The video shows a significant amount of design activity in less than two minutes. You can’t be expected to turn out a finished website in that short amount of time. You can however, expect to do some rapid-fire editing once you’ve taken Muffin Builder around the block a couple of times. Creating a website in a few hours that is guaranteed to please a client is definitely a realistic objective.

The content in your website can show significant improvement as well, thanks to Muffin Builder 3’s Wraps section. Its enhanced search capability will definitely cut down on the time it takes to find the design elements you need as you proceed.

BeTheme + Pre-Built Website + Muffin Builder 3 = A Highly Satisfied Client

What BeTheme Brings to the Table

9

BeTheme not only has the tools you need to get your project off to a rapid start; but those same tools will help you maintain your momentum until you’re ready to deliver a finished product to your client.

  • It starts with the choice of 155 pre-built websites, each of which takes but a single click to install, and any one of which can do double duty as a conceptual design for your website. 8 new pre-built websites are added every month.
  • 119 of these pre-built websites contain multiple pre-built, fully customizable pages. Select any one of these multi-page websites and you’ll be off to an even faster start.
  • Muffin Builder 3 helps you maintain your momentum. If you are a Visual Composer user, it can be used with BeTheme as well, or you can use both page builders.
  • Be’s 40 core features offer limitless website design possibilities. In addition to a selection of different grids, there are 13 header styles, 200 shortcodes, a variety of sidebars, portfolio and page layout choices, and a host of widgets, icons, and other design elements.
  • You will find the 1 click skin generator and the 12 skins choices invaluable. The same is true for Be’s layouts configurator and the Muffin Mega Menu.
  • If having your SEO, WooCommerce, Responsive, WPML, Retina, and RTL ready is important, the tools you need are at your fingertips.
10

As essential as these features can be for any project, their impact could be negated if the support you sometimes need to put them into practice is not there. Be’s support is not only reliable and dependable – it is rock solid.

What Users Have to Say

There has to be a reason why BeTheme is a ThemeForest top seller, and why more than 21,500 copies have been sold to date. There are in fact a number of reasons for Be’s widespread use and popularity, some of which have been touched on earlier.

It’s easy to elaborate on the benefits a WordPress theme delivers, but the proof of the pudding lies in what the users are thinking.
– typical examples of user’s comments and feedback:
11

12 13

You can Always Expect Top-of-the-Line Support

You have a question. Your only choice is to submit it via email, with a guarantee you will receive an answer within 2 business days. Sound familiar? You can be forgiven if you decide to look elsewhere for a solution to your website-building needs.

This will never happen to a BeTheme user. Customer service is only a click away. You can always expect to receive a prompt, courteous response by an expert. Be’s customer support team will go out of their way to give you the help you need.

14 15 16

The video gives a good illustration of how powerful the combination of a pre-built website and a premium page builder can be, and why BeTheme is suddenly creating a stir.

If you are not yet completely convinced, visit the BeTheme website, browse the selection of pre-built websites that are ready for you to use, and take advantage of a free demo. If you’ve been looking for an affordable website building approach that will enable you to deliver a quality product on or ahead of schedule time and again — this is the solution you’ve been looking for.

17

What Have Been the Biggest SME Web Design Trends of 2015?

When it comes to running a small business, your website is the face of your company. Often, the website is the first impression that potential customers will get of your business, so it’s important that it looks professional, reputable, and attractive. It often seems like design trends change too quickly to keep up, however keeping up to date with design trends and having a modern and attractive design will make a good impression on your customers.

Although it’s not necessary to follow every trend, it’s a good idea to re-evaluate your website if there are big changes in the web design industry. We’ve put together a list of the top web design trends for small and medium businesses in 2015.

Responsive Design

With reports that more and more people are choosing to do their online shopping from a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet rather than a PC or laptop, it’s no surprise that many small business owners have ensured that their website has a responsive design. Being responsive means that a website will be easy to see and use on mobile devices, making the customer experience more positive.

Minimalistic

Even nearing the end of 2015, the ‘minimalist’ style is still in full swing. This means fewer visual elements of a higher quality. More and more web design companies such as web design Tampa are using large, high-quality images on homepages thanks to the advancement of technology allowing images and videos to load faster. Image sliders are still high in popularity, and a large majority of sites are using large, high-quality videos, usually without sound, as their homepage header. Typography is becoming more prominent, and a large number of sites are using text alone as their headers, without any images at all. Solid blocks of vibrant color are also on trend, especially when drawing attention to features.

Grid Layouts

It is no wonder that grid layouts have been a long lasting trend, thanks to their advantage of being aesthetically pleasing and mobile-friendly. When a webpage has a grid layout, it is divided up into rows and columns, which divide the design into different sections. It is an effective way to declutter the homepage and organize content. Pinterest is just one example of an effective website with a grid layout.

Creative Navigation

Traditionally, navigation bars will appear at the top of the screen where they offer a clear roadmap of the site. This is for a reason – it’s clear and organized, and since it appears on most websites it’s also what users expect. However, the trend this year is a newer take on the navigation bar being at the top of the page – no matter how far down you scroll, it stays at the top, making for longer homepages without the need to lose the sense of structure and navigational roadmap at the top of the page. Many sites are also switching to one long, scrolling page which is navigated by creative sidebars and other visual storytelling features.

Which design trend do you think is the best?