Pippas Web

Web Design & Local SEO for Small Businesses

5 thing to consider when naming your new business

It’s January a New Year, New Year, maybe a New company?
So you’ve decided to launch a new company. A company name is likely to be the first thing a potential clients knows about you and what you offer, so picking just the right name is important, here are a few things to consider when choosing the name.

1) Make it memorable, you want you potential clients to remember your business name, for example the name Cuts for a hairdresser is pretty common but it”s you’d remember it quickly. However be careful with unusual or difficult spelling. If the client goes to find you in the phone book, or even Google your name, would they be able to still find you or would the spelling of your company make you too difficult to find.

2) A positive response when a client reads / hears the name of your company they’ll automatically try visualize something about the company, a company name that allows this for example pampered pets, would be more memorable than for example shizam. You need to find a name that gives the potential client a positive impression or feeling rather than a negative one. For example cosy toes gives a more positive impression than cold feet.

chose a name the conjures up a positive impression of your business
Make your business name something visual and positive.

3) Future Expansion, if you make earrings and call your self Red earrings, what happens in the future if you want to expand to other items of jewelry.

4) Domain name, Do a search on Google, check for other companies with the same or similar name? From an SEO point of view consider using a keyword that you will want your company to be found using Google, for example if you’re going to sell books, then you’ll want it somewhere in the company and domain name. Check if the domain name you would want is still available.

5) Sound it out and write it down some times when words are said or written down next to each other they create new words or sounds that will for Example Low hypnotherapy when written as a domain name lowhypnotherapy with the new word of why?

Ask the opinion of friends, and family. At the end of the day go with your gut feeling, if you like / don’t like it see where it takes you.

So what was your thinking when you chose the name of your business, why not leave me a comment and share? All the best with your new venture.

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

Link building and Page Rank

When creating links to your sites, it’s generally accepted that you want to be looking for site relevance and the higher the pages Google page rank the more influence it has.

However Google must be working on a new plan, and it’s still anyones guess what it’ll involve.

Normally Google update sites page ranks approx every 3-4 months, but this year there’s not been an update since April 2010. So SEO experts and users are going to have to re-think their approach. At the end of a the day a link is a link. Some have more sway than others, but I find a balance of links works better than all perfect, do follow, high ranking.
links.

So for now just build your links and watch this space.

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

Pippas Web 1st Birthday

Wow it’s now been just over a year since Pippas Web first paying customer. I’m so happy, I couldn’t have had a better start to running my own business.

A quick round up.

1) Customers came with ideas and I made them into reality, into real sites that have helped them to generate more business.

2) Customers we’re so impressed they told their friends, and a lot of business has come recently from referrals

3) I have increased my services from just web design to include regional SEO and even more recently hosting for the sites created using flash-based technology.

Things are now slowing down for Christmas, although I do have some work lined up for early in the new year, so no time to relax. It also gives me time to stop and re-focus my efforts for the Pippas Web site, plan the blogs I want to do, that I never got around to this year.

I would like to thank, everyone that’s been involved with Pippas Web during this last year, and Wish that 2011, is a prosperous time for us all.

To see how Pippas Web could help your business, check us out.

Broken links and Sitemaps

During a quiet Sunday I was working through some background checks on my own website to make sure things were all running smoothly and I came across two useful sites.

The first is a Broken link checker, it checks both internal and external links to ensure all your links are to active pages.

So Why check bad links ?

Bad links are bad for users, they may take people away from your site totally and they may be left in link limbo.
If you go to a site and the links don’t go to where they’re supposed to, does this give you a good or bad impression of the care given to the site.
But the big one is search engines like Google crawl through sites using the links, and finding dead ends will count against your site.

How to check for broken links?

There are many different site that offer this service but I came across this one http://www.web-site-map.com.
I liked this one because
1) it worked through the full domain, no need to go page by page, which some of the ones I looked at today did.
2) It listed only the links that had a problem, some listed every link and I needed to scroll through to find any issues.

The second tool which is very useful from a search engine point of view is the site map. The site map of a site uses links to show the layout of the site, and then the spiders that crawl the sites for Google can crawl your site accordingly. They are particularly useful if you’ve got a new site, or added pages, or made changes to your sites structure.

1) go to http://www.xml-sitemaps.com
2) Enter your web site url.
3)Change frequency, how often do you update your site?, weekly monthly?, yearly? Or you can just leave this set to none.
4) Last modification, when was the last change made to the site. set the date .
5) Set the priority, The priority of a particular URL relative to other pages on the same site.
6) click start
7) Click on the link to download the file and save on your computer.
8) FTP the xml file onto the root file of your website.
9) log into Google webmaster tools > Site configuration > Sitemaps
10) Add the address where you uploaded the sitemap and submit.
11) To submit to Bing.com copy and paste url into address bar of your browser
http://www.bing.com/webmaster/ping.aspx?sitemap=www.YourWebAddress.com/sitemap.xml
12)Change “www.YourWebAddress.com” to your domain name
13)Press ENTER

So how did you spend your Sunday?

Happy Customer – Bright Eyes Pet sitting

Let me introduce you to Bright Eyes Pet Sitting run by Sue & Joan.

Bright Eyes Pet sitting offers pet sitting and dog walking services between Bromsgrove & Hagley . Caring for a range of animals including, horses, cat, dogs and small animals. Pippas Web designed their website earlier this year, when they launched their new company.

This is what Sue has to say.

“We are delighted with the website that Pippa has designed or use. Its an easy to use, informative and eye catching website. In fact the various links and wording that Pippa incorporated gave use our first customers within week one of going live. The customer base has grown month on month since the creation of the website. We want our website to evolve as time goes on and this is being left in Pippa’s very capable hands.”

On Google – Nov 2010 Bright eyes currently occupies 2nd, 7th and 9th position for “pet sitting bromsgrove” from over 4000 sites.

Bright Eyes Pet Sitting screen shot

Customer: Sue & Joan – Bright Eyes Pet Sitting.
Service: Original site design and some inital SEO.
Site: http://www.brighteyespetsitting.co.uk

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

Happy Customer – OvenMagic

Having relocated in the summer I needed to change my sites SEO to Stafford
as part of this on going project in betwen client work I have also been asking for some reviews from some of my clients on Google places to let others know what my clients think of me. I am pleased to say that several responded so I would like to share them on my blog over the next few posts.

Let me introduce you to OvenMagic run by Kevin Kemp.

OvenMagic is an oven cleaning company based Droitwich, Worcestershire.
Cleaning residential and commercial oven, hobs and ranges in Worcestershire and south Birmingham. Making greasy, dirty ovens, sparkle again like new.
Kevin had a site that he’d launched early last year and wanted some SEO work carrying out. Having re-coded his site into CSS rather than it’s original table format making it easier to make future changes.

This is what Kevin had to say about my work.

“OvenMagic would like to thank Pippasweb for the continued support with the www.ovenmagic.me web site on keeping it at page One on google in the worcestershire area for all of 2010. Pippa has given me a better understanding of how seo works and i would without hesitation recommend pippas web service to any start up company looking for affordable seo. pippa has also up dated my web site with a super fast turn round time thank you pippa”

As Kevin said for most locations in his target area for the term “Oven Cleaning” he is on the 1st page of results and for “oven cleaning Worcester” as of Nov 2010 he actually occupied the No1# slot from over 53,000 results.

Customer: Kevin Kemp – OvenMagic.
Service: SEO and site Maintenance.
Site: www.ovenmagic.me

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

 

Who is your site for?

When designing your website (whether you are doing it yourself or getting someone else to do it for you), it is important to consider who your site is for and what is it’s purpose.

I’m guessing the answer will be your site is to attract customers, but who are your customers, and what do they want.

For example are you selling to business to business, providing information that organisations, councils etc might want to read, or directly to the client. The style of the site could possibly reflect the content, for example if you’re providing something to help people relax, for example hypnotherapy etc then a calming style to your site. Sites do look good when kept simple and spacious, however you still need to ensure that all the relevant content is present. Google relies on content to help it decide your keywords and when to return your site in the results. Therefore the more information you put onto your site, will only help.
The balance you need to find is keeping the content user-friendly for the people reading your site and using the relevant keywords in the relevant places for search engines to find you too. Remember your site may look aesthetically pleasing but unless you have the information your users are looking for, or using keywords for search engines then it’s unlikely to be found by your potential buyers, site users.

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

Happy Customer – Lucy Owen Catering Company

I know it’s been a while since I posted anything, but I’m still busy working on sites, SEO for others and of course my own site, as well as preparing to move house in the next two weeks, looking after the children……  Therefore the blog I’m afraid does tend to suffer.   I do try and keep my fan page updated every couple of days so if you need a short fix come check us out.

However I got a wonderful email last night, that helped me to see it is all worth it.  What I do, the site I create help other people and their businesses.

Let me introduce you to Lucy Owen Catering Company run by Debbie Saunders.

Lucy Owen Catering Company is a family run, home-based catering company in Hampshire.  Creating wonderful food using locally sourced produce where possible. So whatever your event; business, party, engagement, christening, baptism, wedding, civil ceremony or funeral they have a buffet menu for you.

We designed the website at the end of last year and due the company doing well Debbie needed to add additional menus onto to the site a few months later.

This is what Debbie has to say.

“Thank you so much for all the help and guidance you have given me. I have been singing your praises to anyone who has commented on the website. I’ve had nothing but complimentary things said about it.”

Customer: Debbie Saunders- Lucy Owen Catering Company.
Service: Original site design and additional pages.
Site: NO Longer live

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

 

 

The Advantages of Professional Web Design vs Doing it Yourself

OK so you’ve decided that your business needs a website.  Congratulations!
You’ve probably got ideas running through your head about what you want to go on YOUR site, but the next choice is, who will create your site?
The two options
1) Hire someone to create your site.
2) Do it yourself.

OK firstly lets look at the idea of you creating your site.

There are many sites out there, that can help you to build without the need for learning any code, for example, http://www.doyourownsite.co.uk/ or http://www.webs.com/ or http://www.moonfruit.com/ .
Building your own site will Save you Money, and it will give you a great sense of achievement watching your site appear before you. However, depending on how you decide to create your site, you will need to learn about how to design a site, and then how to promote it afterwards, in order to make it work for you.  A big positive is You can use your own ideas. You don’t have to try and explain to a web designer, how you want your site to look like.

Choosing a designer has its advantages.

You may have your ideas about what you want on the site and how you want it to look, but the designer has more experience about what does and doesn’t work.  It sounds strange but just choosing a different site colour and logo could stop someone from leaving your site immediately, a designer can help with this.
Getting professional help may include SEO (search engine optimisation) preparing your site ready for Google and the other search engines to help get a better ranking.  You can do this yourself, and my facebook page and this blog will offer ideas of you can, however it can be very time consuming so do you have the time?

OK so a designer will cost you money, and that amount may vary depending on who you get to do it.  As with anything else I suggest you get some quotes.  If you’re a new start up company or a sole trader then you budget is likely to be tight, (This is where Pippas Web comes in).  So the cheaper option of doing it yourself may appeal, but weigh this up against the time it will take you, to learn to do and to promote your site. This is all time that may we be better spent  doing what you know best, running your business, and let the designers do what they do.

 

Happy Customer – Freelance Proofreader Claire Arnold BA (Hons)

I’ve not really added my own testimonials yet, tending to rely more on visual examples of my work than peoples’ responses. But this week I received a wonderful testimonial that I thought I should share with you.

In a world where my computer guesses what word I want to use and then tells me how to spell it, a whole host of arguments between me and my spell checker about the differences between spellings in the USA and the UK just add to my confusion.

Now let me introduce you to Claire Arnold BA (Hons), who is a Freelance Proofreader.
A proofreader is someone who will read your documents, your website; indeed, anything you write, including checking it for errors and, most importantly, give you the corrections. (Personally, I usually get my poor hubby to read my posts or pages before they go live to get him to pick up the worst, but he doesn’t have that much interest in what I’m writing.)
The documents can be essays or dissertation for students, company documents or advertising. Documents can be paper (hard copy), digital or even online. Even websites and blogs can corrected before going live.

I’ve been helping Claire make some small changes to her website to get it ready for customers and hopefully optimising it ready for Google to find and list it.

This is what Claire has to say.

“I recently employed Pippa’s services for help with my website. I was extremely happy with the professional, friendly service I received. She was always there with brilliant advice and suggestions, as well as making amendments to my site that greatly improved all aspects of my site. I would not hesitate to recommend her for her skills in web design, as well as fantastic customer service.”

If you’re interested in using Claire’s proofreading services, she has kindly made the following discounted offer:
*If you mention “pippasweb” when you contact Claire, you will receive 25% off.

Customer: Claire Arnold – Proofreader.
Service: Current Site – Update.
Site: http://www.proofreaderpro.moonfruit.com/

To see how Pippasweb could help your business, check us out.

Testimonials

I can highly recommend Pippas Web very friendly service & everything explained clearly & without jargon. You won’t regret your investment

Lynne WakefieldMozo Jewellery

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