Value Websites have been working with the Weebly content management platform since 2006. We're still working with it because, despite all it's improvements and developments, it remains a very intuitive and easy to use website editor and development platform.
Having said, that I regularly work with Kiwis who have problems with their Weebly website. In this news post I isolate three common problems I have encountered.
Unfamiliarity with the wide range of design and content elements that are available to Weebly users. Back in 2006 the Weebly elements provided were few and basic. With the development of content management systems (like Weebly's) CMS developers had to keep up with the field and keep providing new options. I believe Weebly have done this well, while keeping the system as easy to use and intuitive as possible. However, for amateur users, the degree of sophistication available can feel intimidating and difficult to grasp. Today, to get the most out of Weebly, users are well-advised to seek help from experienced Weebly designers who know the system and who in a short time can edit or improve a website. My advice to many Weebly users has been to have a tutorial of two with us, develop your website content and come back and ask Value Websites to tweak it. While the outcome will be that you spend a little, the result will be an attractive and functional website.
Not using the search engine optimisation (SEO) feature built into the Weebly system. When incorporating an image into your web pages describe it in the image tag option. E.g. the image below has the image tag, "Value Websites offers you a FREE no obligation consultation". This was inserted in the advanced features section of the image options. The website as a whole and each page has options to describe the page content via Title, Description and Keyword tags. Help the Search Engine Bots do their work by making it easy for them and by accurately describing what you are trying to communicate. Completing this exercise can help you to stay focussed and say what you want and need to say to get visitors to your web pages.
Have as much control over your website as possible. Maintaining contact with your designer, or insisting that they keep contact with you is an important thing to do. Having ownership and control of your domain name is essential - some designers will look after your domain on their account. In effect they own it not you as you might expect! I have been aware of great difficulties and conflicts arising from this. With the passage of time we humans forget things, including logins and passwords, and paying bills which sometimes will go to no longer active email addresses. Within Weebly some sites have been built on the Designer Platform by web designers. These websites can become problematic if good relationship and contact does not exist between designer and client. Weebly bills the designer for these platforms. And the designer bills the client. What happens when the designer does not pay the bill, possibly continuing to bill the client? The site gets downgraded, if not lost. It can be a messy situation. Some so-called web designers have set up Weebly designer platforms as a money making endeavour and then moved on to other pursuits forgeting that they have clients very dependent on them. Weebly will rightly refer clients on such platforms to the designer with whom Weebly deals. Not surprising that there has been some bad press for Weebly about this. At its best this has been a valuable service; at its worst it is a service to be wary of.
As the image at the top of this page suggests, Weebly is, "The easiest way to create a website". I firmly believe this to be true. However, with all truth there are challenges that can work towards undermining that truth. Let's keep aware of the challenges and keep on top of the issues. That way our website experience will be pleasant and profitable.
Owner and Manager
With the launch in the last week of the AEAAustralasia ecommerce, small business web, Value Websites are having a breather after an intensive period of development. The other major development was the Alve Family History website that has been a long term development requiring research, interview, web writing and design.
Let's look at these two projects a little more closely.
Last week we did a review of Shopify Online Store Builder which we had been using on behalf a client for the first time. We had been spending time search engine optimising a tyvek wristbands site. It is pleasing to see that some of the search terms we optimised for are beginning to show up already on the first page of Google. Some of these shows are directly related tot he article we published here last week - one of the values of using this blog software!
Today, we want to return to the eCommerce builder we are more familiar with: Weebly and our own Designer Version we have on www.edityourwebs.com domain. This week much of our time has been spent upgrading www.louknzclothing.co.nz who are our major eCommerce client. In particular in addition to adding new products, we have been working on inventory. It had become apparent that some product variations were out-of-stock. So we are working with our client to make sure that where stock is unavailable or in transit, no one can order and pay for product that cannot be delivered promptly. At this point it is a customer relations issue.
We are also working with this client preparing to issue their first online eNewsletter. We have their client elist on Mail Chimp and are currently reviewing content, including a bonus reward for those on their list. If you visit their site, now might be a good time to join their elist. Whether we will use the Coupon redemption component of the software is undecided but that feature is there if needed. Either way there will be a subscriber benefit out within the week.
While we have talked about this website before in this eNews, you may enjoy visiting to see how it has developed nearly six months on from launch.
1. You Approach Value Websites
The process beginning will usually look like this:
NZ DIA Website Rebuilt by Value Websites
On Our Designer Platform
A digest of what's been happening at Value Websites this winter.
IN THIS ISSUE
It has been a pleasure recently to work with some wonderfully motivated people expressing their skills and passions through their websites. Take a look at our latest work and note the variety, sign the petition and see what we are achieving using Weebly resources and a little bit of design and development nous.
I've just emailed the Value Websites' eNews list with the following message:
Hi Business Contact
Our September eNews is available online here:
In it I comment on:
I always value your feedback.
Enjoy spring and we’ll offer another eNews before Christmas.
Value Websites Ltd
Weebly Drag & Drop Website Builder
The more Value Websites works with the Weebly drag & drop website builder, the more we know we have made a great choice.
We have been working with this website content manager and builder for over three years now and we continue to be impressive with both its range of built in functions and Weebly's commitment to improving the platform.
In recent months four very significant improvements have been launched with no change to the price.
Check out our new place!
Today Value Websites has relaunched on a new web platform.
With our relaunch and significant site upgrade, we offer clients a powerful new designer platform they can use to edit and host their website. This platform incorporates up to date web technology, including mobile compatibility.
As this post indicates, it has a built-in blog capacity with posts notified to Twitter and Facebook at the press of a button! Auto-linking to other social media like RSS and Linkedin ensures it is no hassle to share blog posts and any other website updates with your social media networks. Regular blog posting on your website domain ensures you will get more traction for your website with Google and other search engines.
All this before we start talking about features and functionalities of this web building platform. In subsequent posts, one by one, I will comment on these features. Not only are they so easy to use; they ensure your website is multi-media friendly and able to integrate all kinds of appealing content.
For the moment, I invite you to have a look around Value Websites' new place and observe what's here. Don't forget to have a good look at our Special Offer - a great way to get on to our designer platform. Frankly, we're incredibly excited by what we have been able to achieve using this new platform.
Terry Alve - Value Websites Limited