Web DesignWireless and Web has been established to help you and/or your business garner the global presence and power of the Internet to your advantage. For example, we can guarantee by indexing your website your business will be ranked in a much better position when potential clients search for your type of service/product on the internet. It is not enough to just have a live website. To optimise your website's presence, an indepth understanding of how the Internet operates and how the search engines work is vital for success. This is where we can help. The Internet has morphed from a system of education and research networks with remote access to information, files and collaboration, to a system of delivery for multimedia content, telephony, TV Broadcast and music. There are literally billions of websites providing information pertaining to services, communities, commercial enterprises and reference material. How will your website be found amongst the billions? We can significantly increase your website's chances of being found. Our Services Include:
- Website design and layout
- Ecommerce integration
- Content Management Systems
- Search Engine Optimisation
Web Design and Layout
The types of websites we generate tend to be based on "Content Management Systems", "CMS" which is all well and good but what does it mean to our customers? By using a CMS as the basis for your web site it opens up a number of features:
- An easy way to update the website with new content whilst maintaining a consistent look and feel
- Flexibility - as the design is modular, additional functionality can be added, such as shopping carts etc…
- They are database driven, so integration into existing directories and systems is possible using open standards.
- The layout of the site is separate from the content: There are thousands of "templates" available that dictate the look and feel, and these too can be customised.
Why are these features important?
- Web sites are not static media; they need to change and adapt as your business changes and adapts to an increasingly demanding market place.
- New ways of communicating your message become available periodically. Examples would be RSS feeds, Blogs. Adding these types of features is easy in a modular design without the need to totally re-write the site.
- By using open standards we can use readily available tools to support the site, for back up and restore etc rather than the proprietary route that most closed source products direct you towards.
We use a number of "Open Source" CMS products such as Joomla, Mambo, Drupal and PHP Nuke. The reason for this is not so much that they have a lower cost of ownership but rather that they have a wealth of support available to them and a proven robustness. This site is built with Joomla, www.joomla.org. The technologies behind it are Apache, PHP and MySQL. When combined, these are one of the major forces that drive a large proportion of the Internet sites today. So when planning to deploy a CMS site, consideration has to be given to the type of hosting service used and what control they give to their customers. Wireless and Web does not re-sell hosting but will advise and co-ordinate where necessary.
Almost all e-tailer (online retailers) analysts indicate a large growth in online sales and a change in buying habits in the market place. "UK shoppers splashed out a record £8.2bn in online shopping in 2005, according to a report by retail analysts Verdict. And with e-shopping within touching distance of the £9.4bn spent in UK department stores last year, analysts say retailers must take e-commerce seriously." * Selling online reduces your business expenses, provides added convenience for your customers and opens the door to a global market for your products and services. The latest studies of this online market show that not only are the sales growing but buying habits are changing. If you want to study this phenomenon further I would suggest Chris Anderson's The Long Tail. In this excellent book the concept of niche markets and the paradigm of choice is explored in great detail. www.thelongtail.com . To be a successful ecommerce site, the site must be well designed so it can be indexed correctly by the Search Engines in other words be optimised for Search Engines (SEO). Then there are other considerations to make:
- You must be selling the right product at the right price. If it doesn't sell normally, why should it sell online.
- Your site must look clean and stylish, be easy to navigate and the visitor must be able to find what they want quickly.
- Visitors must be able to buy the product with the minimum of fuss, ideally no more than three stages, select product, provide delivery details and payment information, confirm purchase.
- The site needs to be promoted in the same manner as you would a shop or any other retail outlet, i.e. direct marketing, advertising, PR etc. Obviously you will include online marketing and email etc.
- Finally, sales made online must exceed the customer expectations, if you say it will be delivered in 7 days, it MUST be delivered in 7 days. Reliable delivery and shipment will have a huge impact on whether customers return to your site and buy again.
* source Tim Richardson The Register Feb 2006 "UK e-tailing breaks new records"
Content Management Systems
are primarily used as Intranet/Extranet platforms to share content with a business's or corporation's internal and external customers. The key features would include:
- Configurable Templates Using a templates enables a consistent look and feel to the whole site with the ability to change the parameters centrally.
- Easily editable content When the content is separated from the look and feel of a site, it is easier to allow different users specific rights to edit, create and post content using WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editors. The content can be documentation, images or multi-media.
- Modular feature design Most CMS have modular architecture so modules can be easily installed to extend an existing site's features.
- Workflow management Having differing levels of authority built into the CMS, processes can be approved and progressed. For example, a content creator submits a story but it's not published on the website until the copy editor cleans it up, and the editor-in-chief approves it.
A web site should be designed to be both user- and search-engine friendly. Search engine optimisation (SEO) is vital if the web site is going to reach its target audience. However, it is incredible how many businesses still spend hundreds, often thousands, on creating a web site, but spend little or nothing on search engine optimisation. Search engine optimisation should be discussed and implemented at every stage of the web site design process from the directory structure and initial page layout to meta tags and keyword phrases. The majority of web designers don't fully understand the latest SEO techniques and therefore shy away from discussing or implemented search engine optimisation. As a result, the vast majority of business web sites attract very few visitors. Search engines send out "robots" to visit your web site and look for specific information which they use to summarise and categorise your web pages.Below is a typical list of what the search engine robots are looking for, however, you should remember that each individual engine has different criteria.
Each search engine places a different level of importance on each of these criteria and will rank your pages accordingly. The collective name given to the shifting weight of each criterion is Algorithms. Search engines are consistently changing their algorithms, however, web sites that apply the above criteria well can still hope to achieve high rankings for their selected keywords across a range of major search engines, despite the ever changing algorithms. The best way to ensure high, long-term rankings is to spend your time and money making your pages as search engine friendly as possible and of course interesting and useful to your target audience. You may also want to check out the Google search engine optmisation guidelines on what to consider when choosing a consultant to optimise your web site.