Web Development: 3 Fast Ways For Business Of Any Size

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article |Web development|Web Development: 3 Fast Ways For Business Of Any SizeCan a business exist without a website? It all depends on the industry and services provided or products sold. Nevertheless, the website for the vast majority of companies is a showcase of what they offer, and the quality of its performance and content affects whether the user will make a contact or purchase attempt. Your brand needs to be seen for your business to gain interest, build trust and generate profit. Website development is the key to making these things happen.

Moreover, as of 2021, there are around 5.2 billion global internet users. It means that 65.6% of the population around the world is using the internet for a vast variety of reasons. If you want to capture people from different sources including social media, paid ads, and search engines you need to lead them to the website of your company.

The question is what is the best way to develop a website if there is nobody in your company who is capable of building it? By reading this article you will find out about 3 fast and effective solutions.

Web development: what does it include?

What does web development include? It can range from developing a simple single page of plain text to complex web applications, e-commerce sites, portals, and social network services. No matter its type website development includes:

  • web design – the process of designing graphics, user interfaces, and writing web markup (instructions to the software used for viewing a webpage on how the page should look and work);
  • web engineering – writing code for servers and applications using programming languages as well as building page integrations with content management system (CMS) and customer relationship management (CRM) platform.

Web development: what skills do you need?

First of all, you need to be aware that there is a difference between web and software development – different programs/programming languages are used and the final outcome of the developer’s work differs as well.

  • Web developers are mainly responsible for building web applications and websites that run on internet browsers.
  • Software developers, on the other hand, focus on computer programs for desktop and mobile devices.

Both specializations require a strong attention to detail, a knack for problem-solving and programming experience, however, they have different maintenance requirements, workflows, and levels of complexity.

Web development consists of two areas of work: front-end (the user-facing side) development and back-end (the server-side) development, so in most cases, you need at least two developers to build your website.

  • Front-end web developers take care of how a website looks and functions from the users’ perspective, make it easy to access and browse, and ensure the website is compatible with operating systems and devices that display content.
  • Back-end web developers are responsible for the technical aspects. They work on administrative components such as the server, the database, the operating system, and the software and make sure these components run smoothly together.

An alternative is to hire a full-stack developer who possesses knowledge in both front-end and back-end development. It requires years in the field to build the necessary experience and become such an expert but they can create a website from start to finish. The full-stack developer knows how to design a website, user experience and is able to use the necessary programming languages and technology stack.

Keep in mind that if you plan to build a great website you first and foremost need talented and effective developers who also understand the business perspective and represent a proactive approach.

What are the best options if you need to build a website?

Before you decide which of the available options are best for you, consider the needs of your project and company. If you need a web developer permanently to take care of your site and implement changes often or if you have more than one project in mind, you might be better off hiring full-time web developers.

In most cases, it might be a good idea for companies that have complex online stores, SaaS companies, or news sites. Otherwise, you risk investing a lot of money in the recruitment process, and later in the permanent salary of a specialist that you will not need.

What can you do instead? Below we mention 3 fast ways to web development:

Cooperate with Freelance Web Developers

Nowadays, there are many online job platforms, such as Upwork, Fiverr, YouTeam, Gigster, and others where you can find all types of developers with whom you can cooperate on a one-time project basis.

Pros: you can find freelancers from all over the world; developers are ready to work for a reasonable price; usually a short project implementation period; you can review the profiles of candidates and see examples of work; you don’t waste time on the recruitment process.

Cons: you are not guaranteed high-quality work – there are often no vetting processes; lower cost might mean that the project will be made in the simplest possible way, both technically and visually; you cannot count on the developer to advise you on the best solution; the chosen developer doesn’t need to be fully dedicated to your project; you risk losing money to build a website that will not meet your expectations.

Use a Dedicated Team service

When your project is complex you can quickly find a dedicated development team through an IT staffing company. You cooperate with a dedicated team that is not just a group of developers working on their tasks, but they act as a part of your company and support you.

Pros: such a team is fully allocated to you and dedicated to your project; you take an active part in a decision-making process; delivering results and high quality is ensured; the capacity of the team is set on the workload needed to finish the project until and must be delivered until the agreed time period; the fee is charged monthly and you only pay for worked-hours; you get access to work-proven and skilled developers.

Cons: not the right solution if you need to build a simple business website; even if you don’t need to manage tasks of the team, it requires some engagement from your side; cost might be higher compared to hiring freelancer due to high-quality and experience of developers.

Outsource the entire Web Development

Outsourcing has become a very popular process. Outsourcing web development means that
your project will be developed by a third-party company that acts as a contracted partner to perform and manage website development work.

Pros: you free up your time so you can focus on your business instead; the maintenance commitment of the website is usually a part of an outsourcing contract and lies on the side of the provider; software houses face higher liability than in cases of other services, which makes it less of a risk for your business.

Cons: besides contracted cost, the extra ones may occur so there is a risk of going over budget; developers who work for software houses usually have several projects to handle which may impact the quality; due to lack of proper communication you may receive a website that doesn’t fit your expectations; you don’t have an influence on your website development.
Summing up

Currently, thanks to the popularization of remote work, your business has the opportunity to use a much wider range of solutions. However, remember to analyze the needs of the project before deciding to cooperate with a freelancer, IT staffing company, or software house. Consider which of the solutions will bring you the most benefits and guarantee that your website will not only look good but also be technically adapted to your company’s needs.

Unique Ways To Make Your Website More Dynamic

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article |Dynamic Website|Unique Ways To Make Your Website More DynamicWebsite design has gotten quite stale over the past couple of years. Thanks to all of the easy-to-use website building services and applications, it’s never been easier to put together a website in just a few clicks. To make things easier, there are thousands of templates available online that will help you create a wonderful page that can be modified to your liking.

Unfortunately, many websites have become static pages of information that don’t provide much value or content to visitors. In this post, we’ll be covering a couple of unique ways to help make your website a lot more dynamic and interesting.

Add video and sound content

Video and sound content is easy to host on a website thanks to embeds with YouTube and other services. This can turn your website into a centralised location for all of the content you’ve put onto the internet and makes it easy for visitors to find your work. This also allows you to link your website with social media platforms and other similar services, allowing you to grow your audience on multiple different platforms at the same time.

Keep in mind that you can also add video and audio content to your website by uploading it directly, but this can use a lot of bandwidth so it’s usually best to host it somewhere else and link to it. This puts less strain on your server and means you’re less likely to reach a bandwidth cap.

Use an API to provide up-to-date information on things

An application programming interface (API) is essentially a way to interface between different kinds of software and hardware. In the context of a website, an API can help you grab data from another service, piece of software, or website which stays up to date, meaning you don’t manually need to change things.

For example, using a cryptocurrency API means you can display the latest prices for certain currencies that you choose. This is updated automatically so you don’t need to manually input the prices or how much it’s changed. This is a great way to provide live information to your visitors and is a great way to make your website more dynamic.

Use social media tools

You can easily add social media widgets that display the latest posts from your accounts. For instance, you can add a live Twitter feed that shows the latest messages from accounts that you choose, and there are also options for Instagram, Facebook, and other popular social media platforms.

This allows people to engage with your content on various social media platforms, thus increasing your exposure. You can even see where your pages are shared so that you can directly interact with your audience if you want to.

While building your own website can be tricky, it’s important to consider all of the unique features that you can add which makes your website stand out from the competition. Making a website more dynamic can provide a lot more value and generally makes your website a lot more interesting.

Using Digital Marketing To Line Your Own Pockets

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article |Digital Marketing|Using Digital Marketing To Line Your Own PocketsThere is a lot that needs to be considered when it comes to digital marketing today! If you want to make sure that your business stands out from the crowd, there are a number of things you must do.

Gathering consumer feedback is a must

When it comes to making sure that your business is a success, one thing you need to do is get a good handle regarding the thoughts and feelings of your target consumer base. At the end of the day, these are the individuals that will line your pockets if you do your job effectively, which is why it is imperative to consider their thoughts, feelings, and pain points with a lot of care.

There are a number of different ways that you can go about this. One of the most effective methods is to carry out a survey. You can use a ranking survey to find out what your customers think. This is a great way of finding out what matters most to the people you are targeting with your products and services.

Getting people to fill out surveys can be one of the most difficult and challenging things for a lot of people. Because of this, you need to try and find a way to entice people to take your surveys. You could decide to give everyone entry into a competition whereby the winner will win a voucher or one of your products, for example.

Make sure your website is responsive

Responsive web design has been around for at least a couple of years now. And in the online world whereby changes occur by the minute, this is definitely considered a long time. Nevertheless, a lot of designers are still experiencing problems with creating and/or updating their clients’ responsive websites. This ranges from troubles related to the implementation of images to changing the coding of old fixed-width websites. If you have experienced trouble with responsive web design, read on to discover three of the most common problems encountered and discover some recommended tips on how to solve them as well…

Poor quality images

When it comes to using images in responsive web design there is a high sense of ambiguity. Designers have to partake in their own guesswork and interpretations of how to use images effectively. This is because there has been no backed specification as of yet. If this wasn’t troublesome enough, new devices with high pixel density displays are being released onto the market every day. This means that if images aren’t dealt with properly then they can easily end up appearing blurry and of a low quality. One recommended solution is to use adaptive images. These actually detect the size of your visitor’s screen and will those create re-scaled version of your embedded HTML images.

Trouble converting fixed-width websites

Many designers seem to experience this problem. Not only do people struggle with how to change an old fixed-width website’s code basis, but a lot of designers are debating whether they even should. Is it worth the hassle? After all, responsive design coding is a lot more stringent. With regards to whether to convert the coding at all, it is probably best that you do. At the end of the day, these old websites had no consideration for new digital platforms, such as mobile internet. Therefore, they are not structured in a way that would be appropriate for a smartphone display.

Navigation issues

We are usually guilty of overcomplicating things in business, yet when it comes to navigation there is a general underestimation of the monumental number of considerations that need to be put into place. A lot of responsive website designs have a problem with navigation because of the fact that there has been a move away from your standard box along the top of the page or alternatively down the left-hand side. Instead, navigation placement needs to give a lot more thought.

There is no right or wrong answer. Nonetheless, finding the right solution for you revolves around considering your content, design factors, the architecture of your information, and the effectiveness when used on different platforms.

If you experience any of the common problems that have been mentioned regarding responsive website design, then hopefully you will now have the adequate solutions to combat them. No matter what issue you are trying to put right, remember that constant testing on various digital platforms is a must.

Give Your Startup A Great Start Online

StrategyDriven Starting Your Business Article |Startup|Give Your Startup A Great Start OnlineWhen you are setting up a new business, there are so many things that you need to be aware of in the first instance if you want to make it as successful as possible. One of the most important things that you will need to spend some time and effort on is the online side of things – your company’s presence, but also your ability to engage with people and convert their attention into sales and onward contacts. Let’s look at how you can give your startup a great start in the online world.

Build A Professional Website

The website is your major starting point, and the place that you are going to be aiming to direct people back to again and again. You need to therefore make sure that it is as professional as possible, and the best way to achieve that is to hire a professional to do it. You should absolutely be prepared to put some of your seed money towards this – as it will help to bring back plenty of revenue in the long run. A good website is going to help your business look the part online, so it is a sound investment.

Develop Your SEO

Now that you have a professional website, you are going to need to draw people’s attention to it as best as you can. All this comes down to a series of processes and methods known collectively as Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, and it’s something that is worth spending some time investing in, as it can really pay off in the long run. By hiring a good SEO company, you can expect your website to become hugely popular in the searches people carry out related to your business venture, and that will boost your visibility hugely over time.

Don’t Forget About Social Media

However you feel about social media, the fact is that it is an extremely effective marketing tool, and you would be foolish to ignore it. The main thing you can use it for, at the very least, is to provide plenty of backlinks to your website. You can also engage with customers and the general public there, and developing a brand identity which is somewhat socially aware or even just funny can really pay off very well on Twitter and Facebook and the like. Be sure to have a proper social media strategy, and dedicate someone to the task if you have the resources.

Forge Your Own Path

It’s important to bear in mind that these are just ideas, and you can achieve much more by making a point of forging your own path in some way. That means you should be unafraid to fail, if it means that you will ultimately come out better off for having tried. This is an important point that a lot of people overlook in their attempt to do all this ‘correctly’. Make sure you are doing what makes sense for your business above all. That is what is going to lead to results in the end.

Essential Elements Of A Business Website in 2021

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article, Essential Elements Of A Business Website in 2021

Early adopters of the internet will remember just how odd our early engagements with the web were. While there was increasing access to the web from the middle of the 1990s, Google didn’t arrive until 1998, and wasn’t in particularly widespread usage for a while after that. Often, as an early adopter, you would type in a URL from a piece of paper you’d scrawled it upon, and this would take you to a website with a background that made overly heavy use of graphics. It was probably a GeoCities effort, built by someone hoping to drive business by using the new, exciting World Wide Web.

How far we have come, when most businesses now have their own websites, and few of them are as migraine-inducingly messy as they used to be. Now, the issue is less one of wholesale changes, and more one of details. If you want your website to be all it can be now, it is a matter of finding a few tweaks here and there. However, those changes are still important, because everyone is on the internet these days, and a small change in the way your site works can give you a change in traffic that looks small – but which, in such a competitive atmosphere, can be monumental for your business. Such changes include the following:

Hooking the viewer within the first few seconds

There is something to be gained by remembering the eyesore websites of the mid-1990s when you are designing a website for the present day. One of the issues with early websites is that there was simply too much going on, and it wasn’t very well organised. The chances of someone staying for long on a website that does that today are next to none. If you want someone to stick around on your site, then the first thing they see needs to be clean, uncluttered and at the same time somehow informative.

Ideally, the home page will operate as a menu in the first instance. From here you should be able to navigate to anywhere else on the site within two clicks, and it should be easy to see how you do that. Here is not where you use a lot of pictures, text or graphics, because that can be visually off-putting, and the one rule of a decent home page is to not give anyone a reason to click away to something else right away. All you need on the first view of your site is a navigation menu, and potentially the basics of some content – if your site is an online store, perhaps have a banner that takes visitors straight to some of your most popular products or ranges. Nothing flashier than that, though – don’t overwhelm anyone.

Getting the ideal Content Management System in place

Continuing the theme of how different the internet was a couple of decades ago, it’s worth remembering that the websites back then were designed and often coded by people who put a lot of time into teaching themselves the tricks. While there were some drag-and-drop options that allowed you to build at least a home page, making a website was a labor of love – much though that may surprise a few people.

In the present day, it is easier than ever for someone with no real coding experience to create a website themselves. It’s still not necessarily always a good idea, but it is easier, and the range of options that we have for making it work is greater than ever. The level of choice we have is impressive, but you have to make sure that for you it is a blessing rather than a curse. Modern content management systems offer you the chance to radically change the look of your site and what it offers – but they can quickly become confusing if you try to do too much. Ensure you’re using a CMS that is easy to work with – because quite apart from anything, if something goes wrong and knocks your website offline, you want to be able to fix it without having to dig around for the fault.

Content is still king

A website is your own corner of the internet that allows people to learn about your business, communicate with you and maybe make a purchase or two. When people land on your website with the intention of engaging, there is a truth you need to recognize: they could, with a change of luck, have landed with any of your competitors. And if you don’t give them a user experience worthy of the name, there is still a very good chance that they will find your competitors after navigating away. You need to keep them interested with useful content, which takes time to create.

You’ll hear it said of website creation that “content is king”, and that’s an undeniably true statement. An attractive website with bad content is probably worth less than a garish website with good content, because if you can get past the visual assault at least you can enjoy reading the latter, and you’ll come back to it. If a website bores you, you’ll navigate away and not have a reason to come back. This is why website creators, or SEO agencies should focus on user engagement primarily. It could be informative blog posts, relevant video content or useful widgets, but you need to make sure your site hosts items your target customers want to see.

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article |Business Website|Essential Elements Of A Business Website in 2021Everything needs to work

This rule might sound obvious, but it’s surprising how often you’ll find a site that includes broken links, features red Xs where you should be seeing pictures, or just seems to have gone wrong somehow. This website is, as we have noted, your little corner of the internet, and it is more or less constantly receiving visitors (if the SEO basics have been done right, anyway). Now, if your home was repeatedly hosting visitors, most of them strangers to you up to now, would you feel comfortable if the carpets hadn’t been hoovered, or one of your chairs was upside down? Of course not, but it’s all too easy for the digital equivalent of this to damage things for you.

A regular audit of your site, picking up on and removing broken links and images, will make the site work faster and look better. Perhaps more importantly than either of these points, it will likely ensure that your visitors are more likely to return – and when they do, they’re likely to have brought money with them. If the broken links and images are in blog posts they will usually be very simple to remove, but remember that if they are generated by the CMS backend that they may take a lot more work to either fix or remove. Also, once removed, you need to make sure that they don’t leave a glaring empty space.

Old broken links and missing pictures have much the same effect for your site that boarded-up windows would for a brick-and-mortar store – you might be open for business, but it won’t look that way.

Your “About us” page isn’t just filler

If you’ve ever used WordPress or Joomla or a similar CMS, then you’ll be used to the presence of an “About us/me/the author” section in the backend of the system. It is possible to delete this from your site, and some people choose to do so thinking that it is an unnecessary addition to the bandwidth the site will need to use. They are mistaken.

The About Us section is where people will go if they are looking out for information that isn’t immediately obvious from the rest of the site. You can include an FAQ here, but of primary importance is that you set out some information about your company. When was it founded, how many people work for you, where are you based? All of these will be useful information for someone looking to learn more about you and potentially become a customer.

Equally, this is the chance to lay out something of a mission statement, or at least lay out certain policies that your business has. If you are selling cosmetics, for example, you can include in the “About us” statement that you only handle products that are cruelty-free. If you sell coffee, you can make clear here that all of your coffees are grown under Fair Trade rules. In a market that is increasingly concerned with living up to strict ethics, this is the kind of thing that people are going to want to know – and including it in the About Us section also makes you more likely to show up when people search for “fair trade coffee” or “cruelty-free cosmetics”.

We’ve come a long way in 25 years when it comes to website building. If it sometimes feels like we have a lot further to go, it’s because the internet is so powerful it can allow us to create wonderful things. It’s worth taking the time to ensure your website has everything it needs to succeed, because the results are worth the work.