Starting a website to help your business or even to provide information should be done right and can involve many factors. Below are some items you should consider and have some understanding of.

Domain name: You need an address for people to go to, do some research and investigation on possible domain names for your site. If the obvious is taken think of the next best solution. Your domain name is very important and you want something that customers or visitors can remember. But it should also reflect your business name or your product and services.

Target Audience/Market: Who is your target audience and what is your goal with the site. Your website should speak to your audience and get them to do what they came there for.

Design: Crucial in the look and feel of the site, you may think you can design something – but there is more to design than getting a template and implementing it. There are some crucial factors that go into web design.

Content: Your information and how it is presented is very important. Are you trying to get people to buy stuff or are you providing information. It is key that you have a professional write your content, don’t just pull content from other marketing material you may have. It just won’t sound professional.

Hosting: Your site has to be somewhere on the web. Locate a company who can provide you excellent customer service, remember you pay for what you get.

Marketing: You should have a plan in place. How are you going to get people to your site, both online and offline. You should consider Search Engine Marketing and other marketing for your site. If you spend all this money on your site what good is it if no one can find you in the Google sandbox.

Did you know that visitors that come to your website end up forming an instant opinion. They form it about your company and what you are offering. They can’t help themselves, their instant opinion is formed in their subconscious. Why does this happen? This has nothing to do with your content or the imagery that is on your site, even if you spent a great amount of money on your site. 

The color scheme on your web page can tell your visitor different things. A particular color scheme could convey a certain emotion – good feeling, anger, depression. In essence, you might send a sense of trust, warmth and belonging. The following list can give you an idea of the emotions that are associated with colors:

 

RED Excitement, energy, danger, love, leadership, sense of power, strength

ORANGE Comfort, steadfastness, cheerfulness, courage, confidence, playfulness, friendliness 

YELLOW Curiosity, brightness, organization, intelligence, joy, amusement, caution 

GREEN Harmony, nature, money, healing, health, life, food 

BLUE Trustworthiness, stability, peace, tranquility, love, acceptance, patience 

PURPLE Nobility, dignity, independence, royalty, luxury, ambition, wisdom 

BROWN Reliability, nature, comfort, tribal, earthiness, durability, primitive 

BLACK Sophistication, dramatic, power, formality, style, health, elegance 

WHITE Innocence, cleanliness, fresh, goodness, easy, simplicity, purity 

When you decide to design your website, you need to ensure that the color scheme you decide to use is consistent with what you are trying to tell your visitors. The difference between the right and wrong color scheme on your website can mean the difference between someone staying or someone leaving your site right away. 

To keep up with my previous post on listing a few things that can make you a successful project manager I am going to highlight on of the items here today:

  • Communicate
  • Organize
  • Solve Problems/Make Decisions
  • Adaptability
  • Build Good Teams

Your team is the success of your project, actually your team is the backbone of your project. Without a team you will not have a successful project. We can’t always choose our team, sometimes we come into a situation where the team is already in place, but you can choose how to manage, develop and get stuff out of them. Really look at how vital your team is to the success of your project and you as a PM. The time you spend with them and the energy you provide them (engaging with them and motivating them) can give you a high level of performance which will produce a quality product.

Some people ask me how you motivate and engage with your team to produce high quality products? Make sure you understand the vision that you are trying to achieve and be able to communicate that clearly to your team. Also make sure you provide the team the expectations you want from them and what the client is looking for. By making sure you are clear and show the ig picture you will only have success. During the project process ask the team how they feel about the project, treat them like people not cogs in a machine. Show them testimonials from the client show them that their contribution matters to the project. Also be a team player – listen to the needs of the team, challenge them, build a sense of trust and stick with them through thick and thin – don’t just abandon your team to do the project be a part of the process.

To keep up with my previous post on listing a few things that can make you a successful project manager I am going to highlight on of the items here today:

  • Communicate
  • Organize
  • Solve Problems/Make Decisions
  • Adaptability
  • Build Good Teams

In a perfect world every client would be easy and understanding. If everyone had the same mind set and everyone was like a robot – than project management wouldn’t be as exciting. It is good to have a set plan and a set process in place – you can plan for foreseeable uncertainties with your experience, but what happens with the unforeseen uncertainties that come in. Having an adaptive team that learns continuously throughout the project, and takes that knowledge and utilizes it to make adjustments accordingly is a strong team and can help navigate them through the project successfully.

To keep up with my previous post on listing a few things that can make you a successful project manager I am going to highlight on of the items here today:

  • Communicate
  • Organize
  • Solve Problems/Make Decisions
  • Adaptability
  • Build Good Teams

Organize and Multi-tasking

In order to be successful you need to be able to track all components of all your projects, all milestones and be able to do this on multiple projects. To be able to do this you need to make sure you are organized, thorough, meticulous and can multi-task.

As a PM you need to keep track of your team’s workload, progress on a specific task, project documentation, work flow, completion dates, changes to project scope, support issues, and so much more. There is one thing to be able to multi-task, but the real rule here is making sure you can keep things on track and organized. If you lose organization you will become overwhelmed by the project creep and drown yourself with issues and documentations to a point that you can not get out of.

To help with this, make checklists to help remember where you are in a project process, understand the project process – either one that is set in place already or if you implemented one – if the process is not clear and not knowing what the next steps are or follow up on items how can you be successful or even finish a project in an orderly fashion.

 

To keep up with my previous post on listing a few things that can make you a successful project manager I am going to highlight on of the items here today:

  • Communicate
  • Organize
  • Solve Problems/Make Decisions
  • Adaptability
  • Build Good Teams

Communicate Effectively

Communication is the most component to project management and a skill for any successful project manager that needs to master. Communication is not just between the client and your team, its all about transferring knowledge, ideas, solving problems and providing new and/or updated information to the client or team. 

As a PM communicating effectively comes in many forms – writing emails, producing project documentation, specifications, reports, agendas, tasks updates and more. Not only is writing important being able to verbalize your thoughts and get important points across clearly. You need to make sure that your ideas and thoughts are understood, and not just agreed upon with open questions. 

If you can’t get he right information to the right person at the right time, you probably are not as successful as you want to be or could be. Work on your communication skills – you are dealing with people everyday and all the time during the project process.

As a senior project manager for a web design company, I get asked one question from my team or from other project managers a lot, “what does it take to be a successful project manager?” People think I am holding back some secret that I will never tell about being successful in the field of project management. People believe my experience counts in the field; others will favor training and certifications. Well nothing but the perfect balance of real-world experience and training.

But – what does it take to make it in the world of project management? Why does it come second nature to some and other struggle and flop around like a fish out of water? Well there is a whole list of skills, education, methodologies and more to consider. Well being a successful project manager, in my opinion, comes down to a few key things and making sure you do them really, really well:

  • Communicate
  • Organize
  • Solve Problems/Make Decisions
  • Adaptability
  • Build Good Teams

Are these items all it takes to be a successful project manager? Of course not. Be on the look out for more detail on the items above.

As a Web Designer and a Project Manager for a web design company I see a lot of mistakes on the web that people make. Let me share with you my 8 deadly web design mistakes that many designers make:

1. Building the website entirely with frames or Flash. This really complicates things and makes the website not user friendly – along with long loading time with Flash. There will be no unique URL to identify every page and some people might not have Flash player installed which can cause more headaches in the long run.

2. Too much animations and graphics. This will slow down the loading time of the website. People have very short tolerance towards websites that load very slowly. This can also be very distracting if things are not organized well – people are looking for information and want it fast and easy to find.

3. No navigation support or user-friendliness. You cannot expect visitors to figure out how to navigate through your site. You may find it easy to navigate, but visitors may not – there should not be instructions on what to do when you get to the site, it should just be natural. This will cause them to abandon your site and visit other websites if they can not understand the workings of your navigation.

4. No standardization. The look and feel should be the same across every page. Style sheets are key in helping with consistency throughout the web – don’t neglect them.

5. All pages should have a way to get back to the home page. People may enter your site through other page other than the home page (portfolio or services pages for example). Its as simple as having ‘home’ on the navigation or a small icon on the upper right hand corner.

6. Not enough or outdated information. Content is king when it comes to online commerce. If you want to do business online, you must have solid content. Also writing for the web is an art – you should consider hiring someone to write the content for your site rather than trying to chop and piece together content from other marketing materials that you already have. A website with outdated content and non-professional content will not attract visitors, and people will not take you seriously. To keep things fresh and alive on your site you should also consider adding a blog of some sorts.

7. You should avoid Horizontal scrolling bar – unless your design concept requires it.

8. Never testing in multiple versions of browsers. Your website may appear fine in Internet Explorer but not on Firefox. Make sure that you spend a little time testing your website for browsers compatibility. For browser statistics check out: http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp

Your website is an asset to you and your business so make sure that you treat it seriously. Your site should be a part of your overall marketing plan – not just something that you have because everyone else does. Spend the time, money and energy in making it one of your best sales tools and marketing pieces.

Is your website a design glutton? Does it lust after unnecessary rich internet applications? Here’s how to get it on the path to redemption.

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Marketing for the web is known by many names – it is used for promoting or advertising products and/or services using the online media (web, social networking, etc.), with the goal to increase sales and profits. Internet marketing brings together the creative and technical aspects of the web, including design, development, advertising and of course sales.

Your website is one among millions and you want your website to be seen and known by all of your target visitors or better yet, your customers. With thousands of websites spawning every day, that means that an additional million plus pages are also being generated based on the size of the site in question. This means that there is high traffic happening in the web world. This also means that your target audience is not getting to you fast enough, which is a problem. Having a great looking website and a great product means nothing if people are not looking at or even finding your site. This type of situation emphasizes the need for Search Engine Marketing for your website.

Having a website is not enough. You need to be seen to let the world know you exist.