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
Christchurch and Canterbury business Precision Kerbing have been operating their Value-Websites-Designed-and-Built Weebly website since December 2015 - just six months. While we have been aware that the addition of the website has been a useful marketing tool for this business, it was pleasing this week to get the following endorsement from owner/manager Paul Diver,
Hi Terry we have just completed a review of our kerbing business to find that since we have had our website up and running we have reached new heights. We have had a lot of inquiries due to the website. We now ask people how they found us and pleasing to say most from the website, with one inquiry saying it was the most professional site in kerbing. I would like to say thankyou for the time and effort that you gave me in achieving the growth of the business.
Value Websites have developed and launched MyURL.
MyURL is dedicated to ensuring that registrations and attendance at New Zealand events is maximised. They will assist in fine tuning Event Organisers' online organisational, promotional, registration and payment processes.
MyURL services will benefit the management of Reunions :: Conferences & Seminars :: Training Events & Days :: Retreats :: Industry Days :: and more.
Clients choose the MyURL online options needed to complete successful event management.
We have subtitled our new Links Service, "Helping One Another to Search Engine Optimise." If you (and your NZ website) offers an aspect of "Web Design" then you may be interested in mutually linking with us.
When I lived in Christchurch during the late 1980's I was struck at how many new grocery supermarkets sprung up around the corner of Moorhouse Ave. and Colombo St. Someone explained to me that, "business attracts business." While these large stores were in competition they knew they had their own niche and potential customer base, with a particular socio-economic demographic. While occasionally they would loose custom to the competition, it was advantageous to all be together and present as the "supermarket precinct!"
It is exactly this theory that underpins our new "Web Design" Mutual Links Service. If you are a NZ web design SME business then you may want to check out our reciprocal, mutual Links page - a mini-web-design online precinct! We believe this initiative will advance and benefit your SEO.
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.
SEO begins by paying attention to the internal options you have to build your website for search engine visibility.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) of a website takes focused time and some skill but you do not have to be a professional to get the basics right.
In our experience, and we have made the mistake too, we can be temped to take a deep breath when we have finished putting the words and images together to create our website, without paying needful attention to SEO.
Many of us are using content management systems to develop and edit our websites. Thankfully most of these do assist us greatly to get SEO started at least. However, we still need to complete the detailed work:
If you pay attention to getting these SEO factors done well, you be well on the way to making your website work for you as the marketing and promotional tool it should be.
By the way, why don't we swap links on our websites. Value Websites has PR4 with Google, so it may well be worth your while. Place the code below on your website and let us know. We will respond by linking back to you. Happy to do this as a freebie - win: win for both of us!
THE HTML CODE
<p><strong><a target="_blank" href="http://www.valuewebsites.co.nz/">Value Websites</a></strong>design, develop and edit professional websites.</p>
HOW IT MIGHT LOOK ON YOUR WEBSITE
Our June promotion is about adding value to your website or website assets like email list, email newsletter, copywriting, form assets, SEO, Adwords, imagery, audio visual resources, etc.
When we talk about adding value, we are essentially on about increasing:
Recently we have been thinking a lot about website valuations and the factors that contribute to an increasingly valuable website asset. As the web matures and as web owners consider selling their website/s and businesses with a website, our focus is moving more to ensuring that we work with web owners to establish and achieve both short and longer term goals. It is not just about getting a website up and running and optimised for immediate traffic, service delivery and sales. It is also about building in sustainability through testing, tweaking, editing, rewriting, improving SEO and generally taking a broad approach to improving the web/site asset value.
Two resources we offer clients are:
1. You Approach Value Websites
The process beginning will usually look like this:
Terry Alve - Value Websites Limited