Blog

My Website Optimization Journey - Part 3 - Speed

December 13, 2016

Welcome to another exciting edition of “Making My Website Suck Less”. Since I started this journey to re-align my goals and bring my website back from the depths I had gone from beyond page 11 when searching for “web design” green bay wi” to somewhere around page 6 depending on the day and time.

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My Website Optimization Journey - Part 2 - Meta Tags

November 29, 2016

In my last article I realized I had some issues with my website and taking my own advice I decided to act on them. I did that by first completing some pages that were either missing, unfinished, or didn't represent me or my capabilities properly. Today I am going to go through some meta tag issues.

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My Website Optimization Journey - Part 1

November 22, 2016

Recently I had decided that if I was going to make something of this business I had better get at it. The site had basically been sitting idle since the birth of my youngest daughter in January of 2014.

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SEO Scams and How to Avoid Them

January 28, 2014

Last week Expedia was hit with a 25% drop in search results for some of their most prominent keywords on Google. This was because of what Google deemed unnatural links. Similar to what happened to Rap Genius in December of 2013.

Unnatural links are artificial links such as purchased links or links in a bad neighborhood of the internet that point to your site. Examples of bad neighborhood sites include scraper sites (sites that copy all of its content from other websites), link farms (a group of sites that all link to one another) , sites with large amounts of spam, malware or illegal or pornographic material.

I noticed this event being reported in my news feed just as I finished a conversation with a client that said he was contacted by Google about his search results. Wait – what?

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A Simple Responsive Skeleton

January 10, 2014

When I first started to dabble with responsive design I looked at a lot of CSS frameworks. I was looking for something basic, lightweight, and easy to use in my CMS. I found that a lot of them required JavaScript or a CSS compiler to make the site work well on smaller devices and I wanted something that was mostly pure CSS.

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Your Website Isn't Doing Its Job. Now What?

January 1, 2014

A good portion of the time when I'm contacted to look at a website that's performing poorly the owner will have a tendency to want to throw the baby out with the bathwater and start from scratch.

There are a lot sites that come across my screen with their fair share of issues; code that doesn’t follow web standards, JavaScript drop-down menus, unorganized content and more but I rarely, if ever throw everything away. Even with the worst search rankings, unless you're not listed at all, it's easier to lift up poor performing pages than it is to rank new ones without some help from existing content.

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Getting Over Social Media Fear

May 22, 2013

Facebook launched to everyone in 2006. It has become the commercial image of what we think of social media today. Yet here we are seven years later and there are still organizations that fear social media like the Black Death of the mid 1300's. Why?

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The Fold Does Not Exist...Not Really

March 18, 2013

When I create a website home page I use it as a mapping tool. It should have just enough information to tell you what the page is about with links to other pages of the site for more information.

With so many pages indexed by search engines it stands to reason that any page can become the landing page and my projects are designed with that in mind. So to a degree the home page, while still important, caries much less weight alone than all the other pages as a whole.

Occasionally when I submit a home page design a client will approve it based on their idea that the visitor will see all the information fit within their screen. It's not until it becomes a web page that they realize this isn't necessarily the case and we have to have a conversation about the fold.

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What Makes A Good Website

January 28, 2013

When people find out I am a web developer, one of the first things website owners will ask me is if I have some time to  look at their site and see if it's any good. My follow up question to them is usually, "What do you mean?".

Most of the time when someone asks me to look at their site it's because it's not performing as well as they had hoped, for one reason or another and are trying to find a solution.

Looks comes up a lot. But the way a site looks really has nothing to do with how it performs. I have seen some rather poorly designed and unsavory sites do great things for their owners. I have also seen some really well designed sites perform very poorly.

There are some factors that determine whether a website is "good" or not. Let's go over them.

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Social Media Strategy For Beginners

January 4, 2013

I recently had a conversation several different clients that felt that social media was a mysterious complicated thing that they were not prepared for. While it does take a bit of time along with all the other things busy website and business owners have to deal with daily it's not rocket science and there's no magic involved. You can start using social media today by following a few basic steps.

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