Website Design

Friday Fun Fact: Capture Consumers with a Website

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Just Launched: Andrew’s Arboriculture!

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What good timing! Due to the storms of this past weekend, many of you may have down trees, in great need of proper pruning or bracing for weakened trees

Andrew’s Arboriculture is a full service tree and shrub maintenance company servicing Connecticut. Russell Andrew is a fully insured, ISA certified, and CT licensed Arborist that can help you repair your trees and shrubs. Russell has been a leading expert with over ten years of experience, and has recently started his own company to personalize his services, and provide a better experience for his clients.

Infinite Web Designs helped Andrew’s Arboriculture with their first web design to make it easier for people to find them. With search engine optimization and the implementation of dynamic content, Andrew’s Arboriculture will be able to compete with the big companies, while still maintaining the personal touches of a small business.

So you only have 2 tasks to do today: look outside your window and survey the damage of your yard, then contact Andrew’s Arboriculture to get it looking like new again!

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New Website for TeamBrent

TeamBrent Website
Infinite Web Designs is proud to announce the website re-design of TeamBrent. TeamBrent started as a small organization to raise money and awareness for childhood cancer. In 7 years, TeamBrent has been able to raise 5.5 million dollars, and involve hundreds of people through events such as bake sales, triathlons, hockey tournaments, music festivals, PanMassChallenge and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation.

The donation of the new TeamBrent website is IWD’s way of showing our support to the local community and the ongoing efforts to help eliminate cancer in children. The re-design of their website will help them manage this site faster and easier. They will also have the capabilities to harness the power of social media to inform people about upcoming events. “By making it easy for people to access information on Brent’s courageous fight and the inspired efforts of TeamBrent members, we can engage more people in the battle,” says TeamBrent member, David B. Murphy . Please make sure to check out the TeamBrent website to see how you can get involved in this great cause.

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Make Your Website Smart Phone Friendly

Update: Hurricane Irene changing how you do business

The recent hurricane brought to light a major miss step by many businesses. With so many people out of power this past week many of them ran their business using their smart phones. We noticed here at IWD that there are many websites that are not smart phone friendly. If you do not have a smart friendly website you may be losing business every day, especially this past week. Check your website and see what you come up with. If it doesn’t look the way you want, read our tips below to make your website more smart phone friendly.

Check out these examples of websites that may look good on your computer screen, but not on your phone.

As you probably can tell just by looking around the office, smart phones are growing at an enormous rate. In 2009, 175 million smart phones were sold, which increased to 298 million in 2010. Now, IMS Research is predicting that by the end of 2011, smart phones sales will reach 420 million.

smart phone sales rising

These numbers demonstrate how important it is to have a smart phone friendly website. Here are our top 5 tips to help you have a smart phone friendly website.

1. No Flash!

Apple smart phones and iPads cannot read flash. This means an apple user who goes to your site will only see a blank screen. According to IMS Research, Apple controls almost 20% of the smart phone market, which is a lot of people seeing blank screens.

2. Design and Content Changes

The best way to see how your website looks on a smart phone is to go on a smart phone and look at it. The way a smart phone displays your information may convince you to change the design of your website or change the layout of your content. Different smart phones can read websites differently, so it is important to check different types of phones to get the whole picture.

3. Plug-ins

If you have a content management system site like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and others; you can download plug-ins to your website that will automatically re-size your website and make it more smart phone friendly.

4. Minimize Clicks

It is cumbersome for smart phone users to click through multiple pages on their phones to get to a page they want. When you are (re)designing your website, try and keep the navigation and internal links on your site as simple as possible.

5. Fast Load Times

Smart phones tend to take longer to load a website than a computer. If you have a site that takes several seconds to load on a computer, you better believe it will take a lot longer to load on a phone. People are very impatient these days, and you don’t want to lose a potential customer simply because your website didn’t load fast enough. If your site has long load times, work with a web development specialist to help your site load faster.

Infinite Web Designs is committed to designing websites that work for computers and smart phones alike. We know how important it is to stay ahead of your competition. Our experienced team has the industry knowledge to create a website that has the technology to help your business grow online. Please contact IWD today to get a free consultation.

Source: IMS Research

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Blogs: Same or Separate Domains

We get asked a lot of questions about website design and search engine optimization. One question that keeps coming up is the issue of creating a new domain or keeping the same domain when adding a blog to your business’s website. We are here to put this question to rest and help future businesses make the right decisions for their websites.

Unfortunately, there is not a one answer fits all with this question. Different types of blogs will have varying answers. To make it simple we have broken it down so it’s easy to determine what you should do with your future blog.

Same Domain…

If the topics discussed on your blog relate to your business and follow with the same general branding of your company than you should keep it under one domain. From an SEO standpoint, your blog can benefit from the current standing of your website and branding; and your website will benefit from the blog’s consistent and newly added content. This is the cheapest option, because you will not have to pay for an extra domain. It will also take less time to optimize and maintain, because it is an extension of your existing website. If you have made the decision to keep your blog with your website, you should keep in mind, you are representing your company as much as you are yourself. This means it should be less personal and focus only on general topics that relate to your business.

Blog Types: FAQ’s about your business, general industry news and tips, information about all company products or services.

Separate Domain…

If your blog is going to be about only one specific part of your business, it should be separate. For example, if you are focusing on one product, or target audience you should use a separate domain. This will allow you to target with very specific set of keywords instead of the more general keywords you would use for your business as a whole.

Another reason to separate a blog from your website would be if you don’t want the opinions/comments expressed on the blog to negatively affect people’s impression of your company.

Lastly, if you want a blog that is a trusted, un-biased source of industry knowledge, use a separate domain. This separation, will give the impression you are not out to benefit any particular company over another.

There are a few disadvantages to consider before taking the separate domain leap. First, you will have to start from square one when it comes to SEO and ranking in search engines. You will not be able to feed off the success of your current site rankings. This will equate to spending more time to build up and manage 2 separate domains. However, if your blog covers different topics from what your business site is about, then you will want to target a different audience altogether. It is also important to remember that creating a separate domain also means accruing the cost of another domain. Creating a subdomain or staying with your business’s domain are both cheaper options.

Blog Types: Opinion based, unbiased product reviews, blog about a specific product (when your company has many)

Subdomains…

This solution is often a compromise between the first 2 options. Even though you do not receive the same amount of separation from a separate domain, you do not have as many disadvantages. Subdomains will get some SEO benefit because they are connected with your main business site. They are less expensive to maintain. Make sure to examine how imperative separation of your website and blog is to the long-term success of your company. This will help determine if a subdomain is right for you.

Even though subdomains have their advantages over a separate domain, they come with their own problems. Currently, search engines see subdomains as less important than regular domains. This is due to the fact they have been abused in the past for SEO benefit. However, we believe this will change now that there are rules in place to prevent people from this type of black-hat SEO. As a result of these rules, any linking between a subdomain and your main domain will not count as a link factor. Therefore, you will not receive the same amount of SEO benefits than if you were to keep your blog under then main domain.

Blog Types: Opinion based blogs, blog about a specific product (when your company has many)

If you are still unsure about what you should do, explain your dilemma below in the comments, and our SEO specialist will help you determine what is right for you.

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Test Your Website for FREE

Do you know how good your website is? We look at our own websites too much to ever have an objective view of how good it is, or what needs to improve. Luckily, I found a website that will allow you to create a website test for free and get real feedback from people all around the country. This sort of feedback will be able to show you objectively what is working and what is not.

Here is How it Works:

Create an community plan account through Five Second Test. Once you have an account, you will want to spend a few minutes participating in other people’s tests. By participating in other peoples tests you receive karma points. These karma points will allow you to “pay” for your test to be published. Plus, by taking these tests you will get a better idea of what sort of test you would want to run for your website.

Once you have completed a few tests it is time to create your own test. There are 3 kinds of tests you can create.

  1. You can have people look at your website for 5 seconds and then ask them a series of questions.
  2. You can see where people would click on your website when asked a particular question.
  3. Lastly, you can see how participants would complete a particular process on your website.

To see an example, take IWD’s 5-second test, and see if it is something that you think would be beneficial for your company.

Good luck and thanks for your feedback!!

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Website Madness!

We have a couple of websites that we are very excited to share with you. IWD does their best to tailor their websites to fit the client’s needs. This month, IWD created a two more websites. One was custom designed for a local risk-management company and the other was transformed from a flash website into a maintainable shopping cart website.

The Hybrid Group, LLC

The Hybrid Group specializes in integrated risk-management solutions for businesses. This is The Hybrid Group’s first website, so it was important to build a foundation of search engine optimized content, effective design, and connections with their current social media communities.

The Hybrid GroupThe Hybrid GroupThe Hybrid Group

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The Hybrid Group Portfolio

Eco-Chic Essentials

Eco-Chic offers “eco friendly, recyclable, organic, green gift baskets for the home, baby, body and bath.” The main objective was to take their existing flash designed website and re-develop it in WordPress without losing the existing design elements. With the WordPress platform they will be able to maintain their own product catalog and checkout process, while being search engine and browser friendly.
Eco-Chic EssentialsEco-Chic EssentialsEco-Chic Essentials

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Eco-Chic Essentials Portfolio

If you are interested in creating your own website, or transforming the one you have now, please contact IWD today for your free consultation.

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Rowayton Library Presentation: Stand Out From Your Competition

Infinite Web Designs would like to thank everyone for attending the Business & Bagels presentation at the Rowayton Library put on by SCORE. We want to share our presentation with all of you who attended and continue the discussion from the presentation online. If you have any questions pertaining to the presentation, SEO, or web design, please leave a comment below. If you are interested in talking to IWD about a future project please contact us at info@infinitewebdesigns.com

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New Website for Stauss Builders!

Stauss Builders Website Design

Stauss Builders is making their big debut online with a brand new website! Stauss Builders has been designing, building, and remolding homes for the past 40 years. They also specialize in finish carpentry, built-ins, and floor & siding installation. Their master carpentry skills can be seen in many homes in Fairfield and Westport, Connecticut. This website will offer a new platform to advertise their design and master carpentry services to a new audience. Please make sure to check out Stauss Builders’ website for your future building needs. If you are looking to jump on the bandwagon and get you own website, contact IWD for a free consultation!

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Time for Spring Cleaning!

Tips to Clean Up Your Current Website

Time for some spring cleaning! Follow these simple steps to clean and update your website this spring.

1. Check Your Links

Go through your website and check all of your links to make sure they are working properly. For one reason or another links break or become out-dated. I find this happens often when I have added a link to a news story. Many online news websites will only keep the most current news on their site.  This is also a good time to see where you can add new links. Maybe you want to highlight your most recent news coverage or a new press release. The more links you have the more interactive it will be for the people visiting your site.

2. Read Your Content

It has probably been awhile since you looked at the content on your website. Keeping the information on your site up-to-date will show your customers that you care. This is especially important if you have a news section on your website. Something might have been breaking news…a year ago, but it is not anymore. If you are really ambitious you might want to also look at the focus of your website. Maybe you have services that you want to push more, or a product that you have blasted all over your site that is not as popular anymore. This is a great time to re-examine your website as a whole and potentially make some bigger content changes.

3. Add Content

Search engines like when they see websites continue to add new content. It shows that you are active on your website and that your information is current and relevant. The best way to add content to your website is by posting blogs or adding new products. Inconsistent blogger? Set goals to keep yourself on track. Or, you can hire someone like IWD to manage your blog for you.

4. Re-Design

For some of you, your website may need a little more than just a few updates here and there. You may need a total face lift. The internet has changed drastically over the last few years; and your website is becoming more and more important to how you function as a business online. Investing in this technology is investing in your future success. If you are not sure if you want to jump into a re-design, I recommend conducting a little experiment. Find a few different people who have not seen your website and ask them how your website makes them feel. I also recommend asking your tester to try to complete a task on your site (ex. buying a product). You might be surprised by the message your website is sending to people, and also how user friendly it is. If you are seriously considering a website re-design, IWD can definitely help you with all of your web design needs. Contact IWD today and have a better website for the future.

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