Archive for protect your website

Stock photos; finding royalty free images

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We get questions about stock photos from our clients quite often. When it comes to photos for your website – especially content marketing, blogging and social media – you need that extra visual punch. But stock photo services are expensive for start-ups and small businesses. I regularly advise my customers to use free stock photo websites to keep these costs down, whenever possible.

But turning to Google Image Search for photos won’t cut it. The search engine doesn’t allow you to view user agreements and can trip you up if you go this route. Copyright and license infringement is no joke and can bring hefty fines.

You might think, “It’s just a photo!” However, digital products are big business today. Photo supplier, Getty Images has, “an archive of 80 million still images and illustrations” according to Wikipedia and they are known for their feverish pursuit to enforce their licenses. To avoid legal headaches, here are some simple steps to ensure your business is protected.

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When SEO Works Against You

Back in 2007, we had a client who needed a simple static website for her local small business. “Shelly” was thrilled with the design we created for her. The website was basic with location and service details, while the back-end was fully SEO’d.

In 2015, we caught up with Shelly to chat about her website. She told us that over the last year, she hired a SEO company who promised her the moon. Shelly was frustrated because customers were no longer coming to the website and she was looking for solutions. If only half of the promises came true, this would have been a win for Shelly and her business.

Unfortunately, not a single sale came from those services. Thousands of dollars later, Shelly fired the vendor, but that didn’t end her SEO troubles.
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You need a website. Why not do it yourself?

So you thought you’d find out more and googled do it yourself websites. From a commercial for WIX.com – “You need a website. Why not do it yourself?” and their home page says “Wix unites beauty and advanced technology to create your stunning website. It’s easy and free.” First I want to say that WIX, among others, does full a useful and needed niche on the internet. But I want to help business owners become informed about how services like theirs fit the small business owner.

So let’s answer the question “Why not DIY?”

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29 WordPress Plugins to Start Your Site With

Here is a list of WordPress Plugins that we use on almost every site we build. We see these as foundational to the process of building and maintaining a healthy, useful and productive WordPress site. We have had good experiences with all of these and recommend them for the purposes outlined here.

WordPress Plugins That We Use and Recommend

One caveat! Please don’t install a bunch of recommended WordPress plugins from anyone’s list without first learning what each one does and how to use each one. You will only frustrate yourself and have a really ugly time wrestling with your website.

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Why Should You Care About Password Strength?

Doubting the need to consider password strength is risky business. It’s like asking “Why do I need to show identification to take money out of my bank account?” Once, I even heard someone say “But nobody would want to hack into my site. There’s nothing worth stealing…”

I believe this points out that society today has an attitude of apathy. Take a few moments and think it through. The purpose of a key and lock is to protect whatever is valuable behind that lock. Your password (the key) is what lets you open the lock (login screen) and get at what’s being protected by the lock. If the your password is weak, how much protection does it afford you? IF you still don’t believe me, please, call me right after someone empties your bank accounts and ask that question again.

“The biggest security flaw today, according to Sean Ahrens, who heads Aon’s security practice from Chicago: “We’re in an era of complacency. We only get ratcheted up after something happens.” — Article ‘Complacency lets the bad guys in, workplace security expert says’ by Steve Jordan 11/10/2014

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The Nuts and Bolts of a Successful Business Website

There are a few essentials every organization or business should do to keep a positive web presence, but not every business owner knows them. Some of these ‘do’s’ are important to improving the confidence and comfort level of your visitors. Others increase the visibility or popularity of your company’s website and brand. All of these factors together create “Web Presence” and are essential to a successful business website.

What is Web Presence?

Webopedia defines Web Presence like this:

“The term Web presence refers to an individual or business having an established existence on the World Wide Web, through a Web site, e-mail, Internet advertising, blog, or a collection of Web files. Web presence is also called Internet presence.”  – Webopedia, Web Presence

In simple terms, your web presence is the living and breathing essence of your business online.

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