Category Archives: Graphic Design and Web design

Posts cover tips and resources on graphic design and website design innovations. Software, tools and products available to enhance creativity and design projects for graphic designers and website designers. Stories that recognize award winning and creative design solutions for print design, web design and internet marketing.

Small Business Responsive Website Design is Easy

 

Free website design Michigan

We all see the ads in our feeds and on tv,  commercials from GoDaddy and WIX and others, with claims to build a small business responsive website design… in a day… for free. We get the business calls and emails daily from companies that say can build custom websites for less than if we shop local.

Thus far this year, 83% of new small business responsive website design orders have been from entrepreneurs who tried building their websites internally.  Some customers have bought into monthly payment plans with a local media outlet promising do-it-yourself training, regular updates and local SEO.  Six months later, the local business owners website is out of date, they can’t  fix it, and they don’t even own the website they paid thousands of dollars for! A quick glance at reviews could have saved them money and time.

Small business responsive website design , tired of pushy sales people? Check online reviews ...When small businesses know it’s time for a professional website design:

  • Website is out of date and there is no time to make updates.
  • Business has grown but the professionalism of the online presence has not.
  • When their “free” website gets hacked and they can’t access it anymore
  • When their customers experience confusion or frustration when visiting the site
  • They have spent more of their time attempting to build a functioning site instead of building their business.
  • Junior or Intern or ____ gets a life and can’t be bothered to keep it current.

There is no easy button to create a fully functional, attractive, and responsive website design. It takes an understanding of graphic design, color, website navigation, user interface, marketing and coding — yes, knowing a bit of code is a lifesaver!

All content management systems (CMS) are not equal.

Some CMS, like WIX, are proprietary and can’t grow with you, or  take them with you if you go. There are some online registrars with CMS responsive website builders that limit features depending on your monthly budget. You can’t make custom changes or additions. And just try and get them on the phone.

Our customers have come from these examples and more. Our own research  landed us on WordPress as the most comprehensive website CMS choice for us and many of our customers.

Why is WordPress a good choice for responsive website design?

  • Wordpress logo Plethora of plug-ins available to customize and automate features
  • 1,000s of responsive website design  themes
  • Features targeted to e-commerce and events
  • Features connecting social activity and news
  • Attractive user interface (UI)
  • Popular format for developers
  • Ease of updating
  • Hours of YouTube WordPress How-To videosLastly, the ease of training customers for DIY edits is invaluable to those who invest time in keeping content current. For those who choose monthly website maintenance, WordPress administration is fairly standard and  experienced staff can quickly implement most changes and updates.

What are the drawbacks to choosing WordPress for a small business responsive website design?

With all of the capabilities and features offered for small business responsive website design today, the more you add on a limited budget some

  • Software needs to be updated
  • Can be susceptible to hacking if software is not maintained and updated when required
  • Plug ins don’t always play well together
  • Custom plug ins can add one -time or monthly fees
  • Pre-purchased themes do not include support or troubleshooting
  • Can load slow on shared servers

If you’d like a professional website design, shoot us an email or call today.  Let’s connect, you won’t be overwhelmed by the process.

Resort and Vacation Rental Website Designs

 

Love of travel and web savviness had us viewing resort and vacation rental website designs long before it was the standard that it is today. As timeshare owners, we search resort and vacation rental websites regularly for new travel experiences. We seldom stay at the same venue twice – not even our home resorts. Why bother when of timeshare exchange companies like RCI and Interval International and vacation clubs such as Global Connections, offer web portals and we can view thousands of resort and vacation rental website designs all in one spot.

In addition to our timeshare travels and online vacation planning, we list our own vacation rental property. Our vacation property guests book online through our Michigan cottage rental website. We are not in a highly-sought Up-North Michigan location. We are not on any of the Michigan Great Lakes. Lake Michigan is at least an hour and a half away from our rental cottage. Our rental is just a kitschy one bedroom cottage on a small lake in mid-Michigan. Yet, each season we have to turn people away because we get booked up so early.

Amateur or professional, when it comes to resort and vacation rental website designs seeing is believing

Responsive website design for resortWith resort reviews, beautiful photos of every suite, villa, view, and amenity offered, finding a premium vacation rental is just a click away. Sadly, many very desirable resort destinations neglect to present their property and amenities effectively. When resort and vacation rental websites show views of a pristine beach or bright lights of the city with luxury designer furnishings, travelers feel confident booking their stay. When another beachfront resort has a website that doesn’t function on mobile devices, lacks standard features, or has outdated content and photos, visitors are not as confident and they search other options.

Many vacation properties and resorts assume listing with RCI, II, Travelocity, TripAdvisor, Homeaway, AirBnB, etc. can serve as their online marketing. When travel or vacation rental referral sites suggest a property, visitors will still visit the actual resort and vacation property website. Even when photos and property descriptions are posted on the referral site, vacationers practice due diligence.

vacation rental property website designRecently, we were seeking a resort destination for spring break. We searched for a resort within driving distance and planned to use some of our RCI points. I searched through RCI and found a resort with availability. When I showed the photos and the resort website to the 13 year old she was mortified. “Look how old the furniture is! Ewww they probably have bedbugs!.”

Granted we stretch our points and seldom stay at 5 star resorts, but this kid has never stayed at a resort where there was a concern about cleanliness, let alone bugs. I share her response only to demonstrate how important visuals are in this world of internet shoppers. Even if resort furnishings aren’t top-of-the-line updating your resort and vacation property website designs can go a long way.

Work with a company who gets you.

It’s time to take charge of your online brand and improve your resort and vacation rental website designs. Give us a call today and let’s review your current website design and functionality. We can put together a cost effective, timely solution, within budget that exceeds your goals.

A Fresh, Smarter Website On A Safer, Friendlier Internet ?

A Safer, Friendlier Internet AND Discounted Website Maintenance

WordPress rocks as a responsive website solution that non-coders can update easily, the challenge is that, it eats up space. It’s popularity also leaves it susceptible to hackers when it is not maintained properly. New website hosting features, discounted website maintenance and website security solutions are affordable and necessary solutions for small business websites.

Safe surfing for everyone 

Earlier this year we penned a blog about Google’s plans for a safer, friendlier internet. In short, member-based websites, e-commerce sites, any website that requests customer log-in or visitor information will be required to have a secure website (https vs http).  Beginning in 2017, Google will begin putting warnings on all non-secure websites that request log in information or websites that offer items or services for sale. As a result, these warnings will effectively shut down website visitors.

Google prefers all sites be trusted and certified.

Finally, after the initial phase, the plan is to target other websites in an effort to increase security across all of the internet. As a result, it is recommended all websites include an SSL certificate and choose secure website hosting.

Cost for SSL Certificates and Set up

Secure Security Socket (SSL) certificates for small business websites vary from 128/256 bit to 2048 bit encryption. If your website doesn’t retrieve personal information you could choose a lower level of coverage and see a cost savings. If your website accepts payments, customer or member information, and if you have a large amount of visitors monthly we recommend the highest security level.

Additional Benefits of Secure Websites:

  • Higher search engine rankings
  • Increased credibility and relevancy ratings
  • Referrer data – creating more accurate website analytics

Discounted Website Maintenance for Hosting Customers

Website hosting means your website and domain emails are stored on web servers. Web servers share your website content with the world. That is all basic website hosting is. If you would also like to reduce susceptibility to hackers, have regular back ups, and assistance with website updates and staff emails, a website maintenance plan should be added .

Connection Group offers our hosting customers  an exclusive quarterly maintenance plan . Small business customers who do not need a lot of updates or who don’t receive 1000s of visitors each month are eligible for the discounted website maintenance. Small website hosting customers can receive the benefits of website maintenance with all of the services listed in our basic plan for $100 per quarter ($400 annually) instead of paying $75 per month or ($900 annually). Please review the quarterly plan to see if it suits your company.

Benefits of Website Maintenance

  • Increased search engine placement (SEO)
  • Current content on your website helps your visitor stay informed
  • Website updates show visitors that your company is progressive (and still in business!)
  • WordPress version updates helps to keep your website running smoothly
  • Google Analytics integration and access helps you see website visitor trends
  • Daily back ups help protect you in case of unforeseen issues
  • 3rd party plug-in updates keeps your website safer from hack attacks and compatibility issues
  • Email control allows you to create, delete, back up all company email or ask us to help you

Reap the benefits and savings of discounted website maintenance. Websites that have current information instill visitor trust. The majority of websites that get hacked are those that are not maintained. In conclusion, take precautions, maintain your website, have staff check it regularly or outsource the service. The time to clean up a hacked website can take many hours or days. If you sell directly from your website the cost in lost sales alone can be devastating.

Please give us a call today. We’re here to help.

Lansing and Charlotte, Michigan Small Business Marketing Solutions

small-business-marketing-solutions-lansing-michigan

Looking for small business marketing solutions? We receive calls everyday from small businesses looking for answers to their marketing needs. We also receive phone calls from other marketing companies trying to sell to us! I am amazed by the volume of calls (some robo calls, don’t get me started on those-ugh!) from marketing companies. Each call promises increased  Google rankings, website visitors, social media followers, decreased pounds   – wait, no, that is a call that could actually be helpful…

I met with a customer this week who received one of these calls. The call spurred a discussion about Google rankings and how we could help. We’ve also met with a couple of small businesses in Lansing and Charlotte, Michigan have monthly marketing package agreements with Town Square Media. Town Square Media have a large sales forcey, targeting small businesses in mid-Michigan and throughout the country who need help with web design and marketing. They build responsive websites and offer social media management. They also promise search engine optimization (SEO) and monthly edits to small business websites for a set monthly fee.

Marketing Packages for Small Business

Marketing packages are beneficial small business marketing solutions if they offer consistent, fresh, customized content, at a set affordable cost. We were surprised to hear Town Square Media customers were paying twice as much per month as we charge. Plus, their customers were getting a very  small percentage of the service we provide. Some of the small businesses who had WordPress responsive websites built were paying over $200 a month. They also told us that if they wanted to cancel they would lose their website. After over a year of paying for a website the didn’t even own their website!

Fortunately, we have been able to help these Lansing and Charlotte, Michigan businesses. They now own their website designs and have control of their internet marketing. Can we help your small business save money and get more ROI and higher brand recognition?

If you are a Town Square Media customer in Lansing or in the surrounding small towns please give us a call today. We believe in small businesses and we relish the opportunity to help you grow. For those of you who are paying monthly for a responsive e-commerce website or other small business website that you will never own – cut your losses.

Affordable Small Business Marketing Solutions

We will build a custom website for similar or less cost than you have paid and you will own it once paid in full. We will also train you on how to edit your responsive website. Have problems with edits? Call us, we’re here to help and we will walk you through updating your website. We’re here for you if you have major changes you prefer not to attempt. We will provide an accurate time-based estimate to get your website design developed quickly. You don’t have to take our word for it, our reviews speak for themselves.

For small businesses with professional websites who need answers about social media management, email marketing, SEO and getting reviews posted on Google, etc. please give us a call. Don’t sign on with a company you haven’t researched or with a company who doesn’t know you, or your local area.  We will meet with you over the phone or face to face. After the meeting, we can develop a custom plan. Plans can include fee based services, or we train you how to achieve similar results. Take back ownership of your brand, connect with us today!

Get Website Security In Place or Get Penalized by Google

website security for small business michigan

As of January, 2017 website security for member log in websites and all websites that accept and/or store credit card information must be secure (HTTPS). Google will begin to penalize e-commerce and member-based websites if they are not secure.

Main difference between HTTP and HTTPS

HTTP is the protocol that allows the web server to communicate with a web browser. HTTP web data is transferred as plain text. Credit card numbers, passwords and social security numbers can be mined by hackers. Alternatively, HTTPS is not text based. Instead, HTTPS uses SSL (secure socket layer) and TLS (Transport Layer Security), data is encrypted and is impenetrable to the outside world. Another benefit of website security is faster page loads.

Website Security Increases Online Sales and Business Credibility

A 2014 survey by Global Sign indicated 85% of people who buy items online will only buy from websites they know are secure. Chrome and Firefox web browsers show a lock in the title bar on secure websites. The lock graphic assures the website is secure and the company is credible.


eventual-google-red-triangleGoogle will begin flagging non secure websites that gather log in and or financial data with a red triangle “Not secure” warning. By adding the red triangle to non-secure websites, Google will effectively shut your website traffic off.

Have you seen a Google warning to stay out or “harm may come to your computer” on a website? As web developers, we know that these sites have been hacked. Even though they may already be cleaned, we still respect the warning and stay away. Often, if a site is hacked once, it will be targeted again. Similarly, the red triangle will be a digital stop sign.

Will Your Company Website be Affected?

Eventually all HTTP pages will be labeled as non-secure. Even if your small business website doesn’t collect member or financial data you’ll need to have website security. Hackers are becoming more sophisticated and even small websites with low traffic are targets.

Google has not released the date in which they will be marking all non HTTPS compliant websites as insecure. They have set January, 2017 as the date they will begin rolling out the penalties to websites that gather personal or financial information. We will share critical dates in emails.

How do you know if your website is part of this first phase?

Organizations and small business websites that accept payments online and websites with membership portals, are required to have website security.

Types of Member-Based Websites:

Trade association websites, non-profit organization websites, website directories, web forums, all websites that ask for a log in. This includes small business websites that may not receive payments. For instance, if you have a website that sells yarn or fabric and all of your sales go to Paypal you wouldn’t need HTTP right away. That same website can be aa member-based website if it requires a member account for free access to pattern downloads. You will need HTTPS designation for your small business website.

E-Commerce Websites or Web Shops

An e-Commerce website is any website that offers products or services for purchase on the website. Selling products online such as photos, handmade art, hunting supplies, and any product available for purchase online falls under e-Commerce. In addition, services like our individual brand consultation and our monthly website maintenance are also. If a website maintenance customer chose to pay online through our website and not through snail mail or Paypal, our site would need website security.

As you can see, it doesn’t matter what items you offer. Your items for sale can be a products or services, as large as an RV or as small as a brand consultation. If customers log in to your site or if they can send payment through your website you need a secure website. If you do not have website security, call and  connect with us today. Don’t wait until your customers get scared away.

 

Business Card Design for Small Business

business card design for small business

As a graphic designer I have been known to break a few corporate rules. However, I choose to play by the rules when it comes to business card design. At least when it comes to the shape and size of business cards. As in most industries, there are standards to follow that help consumers and industry professionals.  Challenges, expense and frustration occur when products vary from  industry standards.  An innovative product may be deemed unusable. A company who chooses to break from the norm may be striving to create a new standard (Hello Apple iphone7 headphone). In other instances they may not have compiled the proper research. Or they are just going rogue!

Lately, when attending networking events the business cards I have garnered are in a variety of shapes and sizes. Creative business card design is a valuable investment for start ups as well as established corporations. But, it is important not to get too far away from the norm.  It is your logo and business card design that people see most. Business cards will be exchanged at networking events, one on one meetings, and cold calls. If your card looks unprofessional, then so do you.

What is the size of business cards?

The standard dimensions of a business card design is 2” x 3.5”. Traditionally the 3.5” is the longer, horizontal measurement. Over the years vertical business card designs have made a mark as well. The most widely accepted business card shape is a horizontal version. Industries such as banking, insurance, manufacturing, and education use traditional, clean designs. Comparatively, vertical business card designs, tend to be used by creative industries such as architects, interior or graphic designers, crafters or arts and craft products, etc.

Business card design styles

Business card designs that break away from the normal business card size stand out. But, having an outstanding design is different than having a design that stands out. The goal of a professional business card design is to be memorable, communicate clearly and be easy for the recipient hold onto it. When a vendor hands me a square business card that are all the rage right now I don’t know what to do with it. It doesn’t fit in my business card holder, it doesn’t fit in a pocket folder slit, it doesn’t fit in my phone case! Plus, with square business card design, nearly all are two sided – so now you’ve created more work for the recipient.

Don’t get me started on the small business card designs that resemble the size of keychain loyalty cards. Why would someone choose these to promote their business? Does the small business card save that much on paper cost? I will confess, I do not know the actual printing cost of business cards in this format. Why? The answer is because I would never recommend them to my customers. Consider using them as a small product insert but please don’t use them as a professional business card.

Size matters

In closing, I will share that it is common practice to scan business cards into a customer relationship management (CRM) system. All of those tiny business cards get stuck in the scanner. Additionally, square, two sided business cards must be scanned twice. In one sense you have achieved the goal in standing out to me by choosing an odd shaped business card design. Increased scanning and input time has been created for me. This doesn’t leave me with a good impression of you and your company. Isn’t leaving a good impression the first goal of networking?

We’re happy to take a look at your business card and offer feedback. Fair warning- it will be honest feedback! Email or give us a call today.

Stay connected!

The Hall Charlotte Michigan Website Design

Charlotte Michigan Website design for The Hall

Connection Group recently worked on a Charlotte Michigan website design for  the newly established, The Hall. Charlotte Michigan based, The Hall, is an entertainment and group rental space located in downtown Charlotte, Michigan. The Hall proprietor, Jon Hall, recently purchased the historic building located at 127 S. Cochran Ave., Charlotte, Michigan.

Connection Group owner, Connie Sweet consulted with Hall at the venue to discuss web and integrative marketing. The historic building features exposed brick walls, original tin ceilings that tower over the wide open space. Hall plans to book personal events such as weddings, anniversaries, birthday parties, showers, etc. In addition,

The Hall rental venue Charlotte Michigan logo designThe Hall is well suited for corporate business groups. Business retreats, meetings, business expos, award dinners, board meetings and more will find the space welcoming. A select group of local caterers have been chosen to serve The Hall attendees. Guests may also hire their own caterer.

Jon Hall owner of The Hall Charlotte, Michigan

Jon Hall proprietor of The Hall

In addition to being Charlotte Michigan’s solely designated event space for parties and meetings, Jon is also encouraging instructors to use the space for classes. From cardio drumming to yoga to wine and paint classes, The Hall will conform to fit each guest’s needs.

Another type of venue downtown Charlotte, Michigan was missing prior to The Hall was a dance and entertainment space. Individuals and groups can rent the hall and make use of the special lighting and sound board. From dance parties to fundraisers, The Hall is ready to rent one time, multiple nights or in regular intervals .

Charlotte Michigan Website Design for The Hall

Connection Group is proud to be a part of the The Hall launch. Jon Hall hired Connection Group to design and develop a responsive website for The Hall.  A chance meeting at a downtown networking event spurred the partnership. The Hall and Connection Group are both Charlotte Chamber of Commerce members. An advocate and strong supporter of local businesses, Hall chose Connection Group for The Hall Charlotte Michigan website design.

If you have an event coming up in the mid-Michigan area, why not check out The Hall? Visit the website for more information on venue rental and availability.

Hall also has space next to The Hall that is available for lease. A prime downtown Charlotte location, the space is well suited for retail or service businesses. Give Jon Hall a call today (517) 712-0772 for specifics on the retail space available in downtown Charlotte, Michigan.

Looking for a new responsive website to be designed and developed for your business? Connection Group provides marketing and design solutions for customers across the United States and Canada for a plethora of industries – we offer consultations and design services all over, not just Charlotte, Michigan website design services!

Please check back for future blog posts featuring customer projects  and be sure to visit The Hall in Charlotte, Michigan. Supporting local entrepreneurs who are keeping it real and saving the original character of our small town historical buildings need our support, recognition, and patronage.

Stay connected! #charlotterising

10 More Event Marketing Elements for Successful Event

event marketing elements

In the previous blog we touched on the first 10 event marketing elements needed for successful event marketing. For a successful campaign you can’t stop at just the first 10.  Following are 10 more event marketing elements every event marketer or event planner should include in all personal and corporate event planning.

internet-event-advertising-social-media-advertising11. Social Media Graphics / Banners

Create a variety of social media event graphics that include the event logo, main sponsor logos, plus date and location of event for large to medium size graphics. If you will have a keynote speaker or celebrity performer use their photo, logo or other visuals to highlight them. Create cover photos, banners, memes, videos if available, for all social media platforms. Post them for download to your website and encourage attendees to post on their profiles.

12. Social Media Posts / Hashtag

Have a handful of social media posts scheduled for the different planning stages. Save the date posts, exhibitors posts, sponsor posts, reminders, new information such as added speakers, vendors, etc. Include visuals as much as you can. Also think of a unique event hashtag for your event and encourage people to use it before, during and after the event. If you have an annual event include he year in your tag:  #EventBranding2016

13. Order Promotional Products

If gift items, give aways or other event tchotchkes are needed determine what you will be giving away or selling and order them well in advance!

14.  Advertising

If you budget allows purchase print or online advertising. Many options to choose from including trade magazines, local newspapers, e-news and social media advertising and Google adwords.

15. Blogs / Articles

If you maintain a blog on your even website post new information regularly, interview speakers, etc. Send more press releases and build interest from media to create articles about your event.

fundraising event poster / flyer16. Event Signage

Exterior banners, interior directional signage from the parking lot to each breakout session, the expo floor, etc. Include event logo, directional arrows, room names or numbers, etc.

17. Reminder and Confirmation Emails

Drip email campaigns should be utilized for all events. Save the dates, announcements, register, have you registered? did you forget to register? , thank you for registering, etc. Confirm registrations and schedule an email before the event with specifics for each attendee and if invoice reminders are needed. Share details of the event – location, map, time, location and times for scheduled workshops or break out sessions

18. Event Program

Include a welcome, agenda, sponsor information, advertisements, break out sessions, FAQs, area information, map of location, map of expo floor and exhibit hall, times, titles and locations of each break out session, etc.

19. Thank you Plus a Survey for Event Attendees / Exhibitors, etc.

At the end or after the event follow up with a thank you for 6attending with a survey that asks pertinent questions about specific elements of the event you want to know about, Where can you improve? What worked? What could be added?… etc,

20. Create Next Year’s Planning Calendar

If you are wooing sponsors for the next event… the best time to do so is during the current event… event marketing never really ends.

Need Help Design Your Event Marketing Elements?

Connection Group has been developing and designing all of the above marketing items. We have delivered event marketing elements needed for successful events for over 20 years. Connect with us today. Let’s discuss how we can work together to make your next event, large, or small, successful. Good luck with your event!

How Websites Are Like Hairstyles [or…]

… understanding the importance of updating websites

I often joke that outdated websites are like hairstyles, one glimpse and you know from which decade they came.

Connection Group started offering website design for businesses and organizations in 1998.  Sadly, some of the cutting-edge companies and organizations who jumped into the internet then are still working with the same, but now very outdated, website! Others who didn’t understand the importance of updating websites have long since closed their doors. Take a look at these outdated websites from a web design and developers eye.  We’re going to poke fun at ourselves… so as not to offend anyone…(truthfully the first screencap doesn’t follow the ‘crew cut type’ that it is linked to … we never had a crew cut type website… we’re designers with many fonts… we must rebel…)

The Crew Cut of Pixie – All buttoned up and Proper

outdated website design from 2001This website follows all the corporate rules. The company name is in the upper left corner, as text in helvetica, arial or times. The navigation is straight across the top with no drop downs, colors are pristine, and web fonts are clean and clear. There is no guessing where the content you are seeking is, just keep reading through the pages of copy and, if you stay awake long enough, you will get the answers you seek. There are no photos or graphics to add interest or break up the mountains of copy. Because ‘no truly serious business person wants artwork to distract them from their task.’ Internal staff can not touch these site, updates that are required must go through the code nerds in IT only.

The Spiked Out Punk – Loud, creative and difficult

screen cap of Connection Group Adobe Flash websiteOnce the cool-kid website that was all flash and no content. Once launched graphics thrust toward you accompanied by swooshing sounds or music as each bursting circle or star thrashed to the next. The creative animation software that was Flash and made these site designs so popular in the millennium was considered difficult to deal with from the beginning. Mobile developers have further ostracized the use of Flash websites and now refuse to support them. Calling one up on your mobile device just brings conflict and remorse. Those that survived are underground, hidden from all attempts of search engine results.

The Mullet – Business in the front and party in the back

Connection Group Lansing website design old home pageWe’ve all seen this one. The website with all the right elements on the home page but once you get in deeper all you see is code or you have to jump through multiple pages to get a short answer on the question you had way back on the home page. Appearances are everything with these websites. The owners believe nobody really buys on the web, a website is just to help appear credible.

The 80’s hairband – All fluff and no substance

Connection Group home pages 2009You’ve seen them, laden with dark colors, embossed buttons, every graphic and photo has multiple drop shadows and effects. Moving gifs are dancing erratically across the screen screaming for attention. The site navigation is strung out here and there with no sense of purpose or reasoning. Mobile responsive website? Not even close.

Ombre Hair – Trendy and Independent

connection graphics responsive website design.psdThese website designs are trendy and work hard to stand out from the crowd. With splashy artwork, handwritten fonts, scrolling themes, and social linking they’re ready to take on the world. Every mommy-blogger or small business can create a free Weebly or WordPress website, make their own changes and updates, post blogs and photos and be individually unique. But wait… didn’t I just see that same site theme used for the local art gallery website or was it the online fabric or yarn shop website or the Lansing, Michigan cannabis caretaker dispensary website? There’s no shock value or envy of cutting edge creativity, everyone’s doing it. The straight off the shelf free website themes are everywhere and they are all beginning to look the same. Plus the novelty wares off all too quickly. Once trendy small business websites are off on their own away from the original stylist, roots start to show up as broken links that take you nowhere and the last posted blog from two years ago starts with “Sorry it’s been so long… I’ve been so busy I don’t have time to update my own website… ”

Buzzcut with Shaved Design – You’ve been hacked

These websites may have started out fine with a few fancy plug-ins with extra features or added interests were included. It looked and sent the desired message so there was not need to change it or look at it again. The only problem is hackers love to attack websites that do not get updated regularly. These are the sites that you land on that automatically come up with a Google caution that says, “Go back – we have detected malware that may harm your computer… proceed at your own risk. Even you are not adding new photos or text or regular blogs, website maintenance and updates are important for security reasons as well as the benefit of increased SEO.

What decade or style do you find your company website in?

 Technology and websites are ever changing and it can be hard to keep up. Now that you understand the importance of updating websites, you need a completely new website design or just need help updating your website, connect with us today. New website designs and website updating is 15% off through June 15. Hurry and get on our schedule today.

If you are interested in seeing throwback from websites-gone-by, visit archive.org. This website has chronicled website crawls since the year 1990s.